I bought a haunted Samurai sword off eBay

Ok, it’s not the smartest thing I’ve ever done, but I get bored easily and I’m always fishing around for something new to get interested in. I saw Kill Bill a while back and thought – yeah! That’s what I want to do! Samurais rock! The first thing to do was obviously to buy a pair of Onitsuka Tiger Mexico 66 trainers, just like Kiddos. They’re sold out in most places but if you don’t mind a cheap knock-off from the internet then they’re easy to get hold of. It was a bit different with the sword.

Turns out that selling or importing samurai swords is illegal in the UK. Since 2008! Very annoying. But if you’re crafty enough, there are ways around it. Antique sword collectors are exempt so, a bit of dodgy paperwork later, I found my very own katana on eBay. This guy who collects them was selling it – said it was the best one in his whole collection and it was only 50 quid. I gave him a bell and asked  him why he was selling it so cheaply. He went a bit quiet for a while and said the sword just didn’t suit him, that it was time it had a new owner. Well, it didn’t suit me to ask any probing questions so we fixed up a time to meet in a pub round the back of Waterloo.

He wasn’t what I was expecting, a kind of nerdy guy with a twitch and glasses. Really shy. But I handed over the 50 quid, he bought us both a pint and – boom! – I had my very own katana.

A couple of drinks in and I asked him why he was really selling, that I didn’t care if the sword was hot, I wouldn’t tell anyone where I got it from. He shook his head. “No,” he said, “it’s not nicked. I imported it just before the ban came in – from a genuine dealer in Japan. It’s the real deal, used by an actual samurai and everything – it’s donkey’s years old, even though it looks nearly brand new. It’s…well, it’s got some unusual properties.”

Exciting! I leaned forward, “What’s unusual about it?”

He swallowed and got a bit sweaty. “You’re gonna think I’m nuts.”

“Try me.”

“Well, I used to keep it in the display case with the others – I’ve got about a dozen. But every morning when I woke up, it had moved. And I don’t mean that it had fallen off its stand. I mean that it was out of the locked case and on the floor by the window. Or sometimes even on my bed. At first I thought I’d forgotten to put it away, or got it out when I was pissed or something, but the same thing happened night after night when I knew I’d locked it up. Then, one night, about a fortnight ago, I woke up and it was beside me on the pillow. And it was covered in blood. Not only that,” he went on, his hands shaking, “but I was wearing my trainers in bed – and I’d definitely taken them off the night before – and they were covered in mud like I’d been out running through flowerbeds.”

He suddenly shot backwards in his chair and leapt up, downing his pint as he went. “But you’ve bought it now, it belongs to you – it’s nothing to do with me anymore. You can’t have a refund.” And with that he shot off out of the pub. A refund? He must be joking – I’m over the moon about my haunted samurai sword. I love an adventure!

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Alex Jury

Alex Jury

Alex Jury is a retired cowgirl, now working as a copywriter in London. She loves working with words but misses all the lassoing.
Alex Jury

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