A Father's Watchful Eye
Odin had been observing Midgard from his high seat at Hlidskjalf for some time, and he was becoming very concerned with what he saw. Thor, and his one time mistress Jord, had always been able to deal with the occasional incursion by the Jotuns, but this time they had come en masse, and were overwhelming the mother and son.
Valfather considered helping his son in the fight against the invading Jotuns, but Thor had been conceived to protect the Midgardian world, and if he succeeded or failed Odin had decided to leave it up to the fate that was written at the time of his divine birth. He would hold his son responsible, however, if he failed in his duty to safeguard the descendants of Ask and Embla. Besides, Odin told himself, neither the Goddess born from the cosmos, or Thor had asked for his help.
Odin was intrigued with the Midgardian called Sigvaldi, who was the new Chieftain of the village of Tofte. He was braver than any Midgardian he had ever seen before, and Odin had watched them all from Hlidskjalf. All - Father could feel the honor emanating from this human when he refused to run away and abandon the village his ancestors had founded. When Odin witnessed Sigvaldi killing the father of the woman he loved to gain the right to stay and defend his village, the Father of Man felt a pride in this human that he usually reserved only for his fellow Asgardians.
Odin sat for days upon Hlidskjalf, and silently contemplated what was the wisest choice he could make concerning this human he had grown so fond of. If he intervened on Thor's behalf he might dishonor his son, who he was certain would eventually force the Jotuns out of Midgard. On the other hand he had gained a great respect for this new Chieftain of Tofte and he did not want him, or his people, to perish,
As he sat there quietly in reflection he suddenly smiled.
" If a father cannot help his son ....... then maybe a son can help his father ! " he whispered to himself.
Then Odin laughed.
" And two heads are always better than one ! "
Odin rose up off of his high seat, left Hlidskjalf, and entered the main hall. There, as always, stood his faithful messenger Hermod ready and willing to follow any command given to him.
" I wish you to ride with great haste and bring my grandsons Magni and Modi here to my hall ! " he ordered the messenger.
Hermod nodded dutifully.
" Yes, my Lord ! " he replied and then quickly left the hall.
Odin was feeding Geri and Freki when he heard the doors to his great hall burst open. He grinned, for he knew that only his son Thor, and his grandson Modi were brash enough to enter his hall in such a disrespectful manner. Magni, on the other hand , was nothing like his older brother. Despite his young age Magni was always calm and serene. Odin knew that this peaceful attitude was due to the fact that he might very well be the strongest being in all the nine worlds. As loud, angry, and annoying as Modi would often act, Magni, with a mere narrowing of his eyes, could demand much more respect than his brother.
Both boys, to honor their grandfather, knelt before the Lord of Asgard. Odin nodded his greetings to his grandsons, and then spoke.
" Rise up my boys, for I have a great task that I would like you to perform for me ! " he told them.
Modi, always the more vociferous of the brothers, jumped up and shouted joyfully.
" What is it that you wish us to do for you grandfather ! ? " he asked.
Odin chuckled at the older boys' exuberance, but he admired more the quiet demeanor of Magni, who stood patiently with his arms folded waiting to hear what he had to say. Odin thought to himself that many millennium from now, when he, Thor, and Balder were all gone, it would be Magni who would rule Asgard with his quiet confidence, and his unmatched strength.
" I would like you both to travel to Midgard and go to a village in the Northway called Tofte. There you will observe the Midgardians who are about to do battle with a band of marauding Giants. You are not to interfere unless it appears that the Jotuns may defeat the humans who live there...... or until I command you to ! I do not wish any harm to come to these Midgardians ! " he told them.
Odin looked both boys in the eyes one by one.
" Are my wishes understood ? " Valfather asked.
Modi shrugged his shoulders.
" Are we not to be allowed to kill any of the Giants ? " Modi asked sarcastically.
Magni grimaced at his brother words, and then he spoke softly.
" Grandfather is not denying us the honor of killing Jotuns. He simply wishes us to wait for his order . " he replied .
Odin's eye narrowed, and he thought about scolding Modi for a moment. Then All- Father shook his head and smiled. He could never remain angry at his grandsons for more than a short time.
" If you boys do as I wish ..... I may let you join your father in chasing the Jotuns out of Midgard once and for all ! " Odin told them with a little grin.
Modi smacked his right fist into the open palm of his left hand.
" Yes ! Now that is a task worth our honor ! " he shouted boldly.
Odin paid little attention to Modi. He watched Magni' s reaction instead. The youngster simply shook his head in affirmation, bowed, and then began to walk towards the doors. Odin was once again impressed by the maturity of someone so young.
Modi on the other hand saw his brother turn and walk away, and without acknowledging Great Odin at all, spun around and followed his younger brother out.
" Hey ! Where are you going brother ! ? " Modi shouted.
" Midgard. " Magni replied quietly.
Odin laughed as his grandsons left the hall.
" Yes ! Magni was born to lead ! " he whispered to himself.
- End Chapter 5
- Next : Chapter 6 : The Jotuns Are Coming !
- Glenn Bergen, ( Ravensheart ), © Copyright, 2016.