Child Of Destiny
The Joining Of Two Kingdoms
King Runolf noticed that Astrid was holding Thorvald's hand, and turned King Olaf around to see it as well. " And what will we do about these two, King Olaf of Hedemark ? " Runolf said with a smile. " Love is a matter as complex as war King of Romerike ! We must proceed with caution ! " Olaf said with a laugh. " Queen Grima will never approve of their marriage ! " Runolf told them. " Nor will my Queen Gudrun agree to such a union ! " Olaf replied holding back a laugh. Astrid and Thorvald glanced at each other, before lowering their heads in disappointment at what they were hearing. Astrid moved closer to Thorvald, and rested her head on his chest, as the prince put his arms around her. " Honestly though," King Runolf said with a laugh, " I would rather risk a war with my wife then continue our centuries old conflict. " King Olaf shook his head in agreement. " I agree ! I can put up with my wife' s anger for the sake of peace. Besides, Gudrun will eventually come around and accept their marriage. " Olaf said smiling at the couple. " Then we are agreed that they should be married ? " King Runolf asked. " Yes ! I think as soon as possible would be best ! " Olaf said pointing to the loving couple. Thorvald and Astrid kissed, and held each other, when they heard that their marriage was agreed upon. Suddenly, a roaring cheer rose up from the warriors surrounding them. Onund stepped forward, thrust his drinking horn into the air, and shouted : " All hail Princess Astrid and Prince Thorvald ! " When the cheers died down Magnus stepped forward, and added his toast : " May their union bring peace to both Romerike and Hedemark ! " Warriors from both armies held up their horns and toasted each other throughout the evening.
The wedding was held in Hedemark during the next full moon. It was a lavish affair ! The great hall was richly decorated, and the amount of food that was put out for the feast impressed even the most greedy of visitors who attended. Kings and queens came from almost every realm in Norge. All that is except King Kjardan's old ally of Hordaland. They came from as far south as Ranrike, as far west as Soga, and as far north as Halogaland. The kings of Svearike, and Danmark did not attend personally, but felt the marriage was important enough to send emissaries with presents to honor the royal couple.
Queen Gunnlod of Hedemark, and Queen Grima of Romerike, did not speak to each other the entire day of the wedding, and barely looked at each other all night. They did not like the marriage, and hated each other. Their constant protests had done nothing to change the minds of their husbands, and once their subjects made it known that they were tired of war, and wanted this marriage of peace to take place, their objections faded into the background. They both hated the thought of their child marrying the child of a people they had hated for centuries, but their anger was tempered by the knowledge that this marriage was not just a union of a man and a woman, but the joining of two kingdoms, in friendship and peace.The queen mothers may have not liked the marriage, but they were powerless to prevent what everyone else wanted, so they sat there and greeted all those in attendance, and pretended that this was a joyful day for them.
As everyone was leaving, Queen Grima tried to start a little trouble by asking in which kingdom the royal couple would live ? Grima felt that as the mother of the bride they should live in Romerike with her. Queen Gunnlod quickly shot back that the woman always came to live with the husband' s family. It was tradition she pointed out. As the exchange began to heat up, Prince Thorvald smiled at both of them, and said without malice towards either : " Mother Grima, Mother Gunnlod, Astrid and I have decided to live in our own hall that we are building by the cave where we sheltered from that fateful storm. " Queen Grima's eyes narrowed as she asked : " And whose land will this hall be built on ? " Astrid laughed as she replied: " The hall is on Romerike's side of the border, but the stables, and the growing fields, will be on the Hedemark side. " Queen Gunnlod then placed her hands on her hips. " And who will rule which kingdoms when we are gone ? " she asked. " We will rule both mother ! " Thorvald replied boldly. " Well, I don' t know about you Olaf, but I intend to live a long life ! " Runolf told them with a laugh. Olaf put his hand on Thorvald's shoulder, and looked him in the eye. " You will have to wait a long time for my death also son ! " he told him with a chuckle.
End Chapter 11
- Glenn Bergen, Copyright, 2014.
Next : Chapter 12 : The Child Of Destiny.