The Fire Dragon's Quest
( Part Three Of The Ítreksjóð Trilogy )
Something Not Quite Right
" Father, why did you not punish the Earth Dwarves more harshly for their attack on our world ? " Ítreksjóð had asked.
Odin, mired in deep contemplation as he often was, took a moment before responding to his son's question.
" If you place a kettle over a fire and do not watch it,... should you blame the kettle when it boils over ? " he asked in return.
" Of course not ! You blame yourself for not tending to the pot sooner ! " the Dragon God replied.
Odin nodded proudly at his son's concise answer.
" Exactly ! And then you clean up the mess yourself. And we Asgardians, myself included, did not tend to our friends the Earth Dwarves. We treated them poorly, and then wondered why their tempers boiled over into anger and resentment. " he explained to his son.
Ítreksjóð abruptly stopped walking as a great realization came over him.
" And that is why you allowed me to step in to stop the Dwarve Civil War . " he told his father.
Odin stopped and turned to face his son.
" Yes ! And what we have been doing to all the Dwarves lately, the Earth Dwarves have been doing to the Rock Dwarves for many years. " he explained.
" Perhaps they will now work together to form a better future for themselves. " he said hopefully.
Odin looked away from his son, and off into the distance, as though he were searching for something just out of sight.
" Unfortunately Ítreksjóð hatred and prejudice can sometimes be forces that are much stronger than reason and wisdom. " he told his son.
As they reached the golden steps of Valhalla Odin invited his son to stay.
" Vidar and Vali can guard Asgard's treasure a little longer. " he assured his son.
Ítreksjóð patted his father on the shoulder as he replied to the offer.
" It is kind of you to invite me father, but I think I have spent enough time in this world. I think I will return to my home now. " he informed the All- Father.
Odin grabbed his son's wrist and pulled him close.
" Be well my son,... and do not spend all of your time in the cavern. " he whispered in his son's ear.
Vali greeted Ítreksjóð as he approached, while Vidar simply nodded his greeting.
" Good day Ítreksjóð ! " Vali said, happy to see his new brother.
" I take it that you have come to relieve us and to once again guard the treasure yourself. " Vali asked to be sure that they could leave.
" Yes ! The situation in Svartalfheim has stabilized, and I have returned to my rightful place. " he assured both Vali and Vidar.
Vali thumped his strong hand onto Ítreksjóð's back.
" Then I will be off to see my mother Rindr in the Western Halls, and Vidar will return to his land of brushwood and tall grass. " he told the Dragon God before he and his brother turned and left.
Before entering the cave Ítreksjóð returned himself to dragon form. As he slithered through the tunnels the silence of the empty caverns was as comforting as an old friend, and it made him feel right at home once again.
" The beings on the surface do talk an awful lot ! " he thought to himself as he slithered into the chamber that held the glittering hoard of Asgardian wealth.
After he climbed up onto the great mound of gold, silver, and precious gemstones, he circled around several times to find a comfortable position for which to rest. When he finally found the spot that suited him best he lay down his head upon the gold hoard, and slowly closed his eyes.
Ítreksjóð sniffed the air a few times before opening one of his golden eyes. He wasn't sure exactly what was wrong, but he was absolutely positive that something was not quite right. His other eye popped open the moment he realized what it was that was bothering him !
" There is coin missing ! " he bellowed out along with a flare of angry flames.
The great Dragon God rose up off of the mound and looked around the chamber, but the coin was not there. He immediately assumed that one of the Dwarves had taken it with them, and dropped it in one of the tunnels as they fled. With his ire up he began to slither up and down every tunnel, including the one that the Dwarves had become trapped in. When he did not find what he was looking for it made him twice as mad !
As he emerged once again out into the Asgardian sunshine he decided to follow the path that the Dwarves had taken to try and escape the Golden Realm. When he reached Bifrost, however, and still had not found the coin, he was left with only one conclusion to make :
" The Dwarves must still possess my coin ! " he repeated several times before flying off to Valhalla.
Odin was resting upon Hlidskjalf when the doors suddenly flew open, knocking the hall's guard Syn to the ground.
" Who dares such an intrusion ! " Odin bellowed.
Without so much as a greeting Ítreksjóð transformed and told his father why he had come back so soon.
" All - Father, the Dwarves have stolen one of my coins and I wish to go to Svartalfheim to get it back ! " he told his father in the form of a demand.
Odin frowned over his son's sudden burst of anger.
" It is but one gold piece among many tens of thousands of coins. Do not bother yourself over such a trifle. " he lectured his son.
Ítreksjóð, already angered by the situation, was made all the more furious by his father's callous attitude, and demanded that he have some one guard the treasure while he went to the land of the Dwarves to retrieve his property. Odin, dismayed by his son's inflexibility finally agreed to post Thrudr and Hlin at the cavern entrance. Before his son left, however, Odin had a question for Ítreksjóð.
" Is one coin worth killing for ? " he asked.
Ítreksjóð gave his father a cold stare.
" Evil deeds must be accounted for or they will multiply like Draupnir ! " he shot back.
Odin nodded, for he could not deny his son's simple logic. The All - Father waved his son away without another word to him.
After Ítreksjóð left, Syn, who was brushing herself off from being knocked to the ground, walked up to Hlidskjalf and spoke to the Lord of Asgard.
" If your son is not careful, my Lord, this could potentially get out of hand ! " she informed Odin.
The All - Father sat down and covered his face with his hands for a moment. Then with a nod he opened up the window to the nine worlds.
" You are right, my friend ! I will keep a close eye on the situation ! " he assured Syn.
- End Chapter 1
- Next : Chapter 2 : Now You See It, Now You Don't !
- Glenn Bergen, ( Ravensheart ), © Copyright, 2017.