Rubbing to edges and corners bumped. Spine and covers creased.
There on the dusty floor was a little iron chest. In front of it lay a black, iron sword.
In the half-light of the hidden room their faces were pale and tense. John took the chest and rested it so that the light fell on it. There was no key. His fingers were shaking as he tried the lid.
Hilary was breathing down his neck. Merrily's hair tickled his cheek. Harry's teeth were chattering. Even Lundy, the dog, watching through the secret panel, was whinning with excitement.
No word was spoken as John lifted the lid.