i wasn't implying you could remove the cable without breaking it .. just that a bike's brakes are important. A cable's strength should be an known quantity.. I would guess your cable is ok since you got it moving so quickly and easily.
But since you mention it the metal barrel on a cable's end might be removed and replaced.. (a very recent thread here went into that). The cable could then be pulled and inspected. And if the cable needs to be slightly shortened to do this, the sheath could be cut shorter to make up the difference.