The Rune Stone
Svartalfheim And Ljosalfheim
" Why is this happening ! ? "
Bente ran her hand over her forehead and ignored his question.
" That was way too close ! " she said angrily.
Terje nodded and tapped the notepad that was now back in his pocket.
" Sorry ! My nerves are a little on edge, and my hands were shaking when I dropped the pad. " he replied.
" Why is this happening ? " he asked again as he looked around at his new surroundings.
Bente narrowed her eyes and took a deep breath.
" Well ! Since you are asking me, I will tell you. I believe that this is happening because you ignore the ancient Gods, while at the same time placing scientific reasoning above the faith of your ancestors. " she replied in a scolding manner.
Terje tried to keep a stoic expression on his face in front of his student, but he was much too upset to remain calm.
" Well,.... how was I suppose to know that this was all real ! I have studied religions from many cultures, but the Egyptian Gods,.... the Greek Gods,.... and the Celtic Gods did not send me to their realms ! " he blurted out like a child who had been unfairly reprimanded.
" That my dear professor is why they call it faith. To believe in something that cannot,.... and should not be real, takes a great leap of faith. One that I believe you are now about to take. " she explained as though she were the teacher and he was the student.
Terje nodded and then pointed to the stone walls that glowed with light from the luminescent moss that grew on it's surface.
" I don't need proof anymore ! I just hope the Dwarves, or Dark Elves if you prefer, are friendlier than the Frost Giants, because my dear we are under ground in a cave, and therefore we must be in Svartalfheim. " he told her.
Bente and Terje stopped their conversation when they heard the echo of shuffling of feet coming their way. Despite the glow shining off of the walls of the cave, it was too dark for either of them to make out the creature that was approaching.
" You do not belong here ! No, no, no !! How can humans come to Svartalfheim ? That is not right ! Not right at all ! You must go ! Now ! " the old hairy Dwarf said almost as one continuous sentence as he stopped in front of them.
Terje did not know whether to laugh or cry as he studied the Dark Elf. What an odd creature it was ! A big head, with scraggly uncombed hair and a big nose, sat upon it's chest with little or no neck to connect the two. Wide strong shoulders, powerful arms, small waist, big hips, and short stubby legs made the Dwarf look more like a cartoon character than a being from another world. Despite wanting to laugh Terje remained without expression as he addressed the little fellow.
" If we are intruding we will leave at once. " he informed the little creature.
The Dwarf looked Terje up and down, and then turned to Bente to do the same. Suddenly the Dwarf's attitude changed dramatically.
" Intruding ! No !! You are most welcome ! My name is Brokk, and if you will follow me I will take you to my home ! " he told them in a most friendly tone.
Terje had been ready to recite the magical incantation, but the offer caught him off guard, and he responded as most humans do.
" I am Terje, and this is my assistant Bente. " he offered somewhat reluctantly.
" Bente ? How strange ! " the Dwarf replied as he walked away shaking his head.
Terje and Bente fell in behind the Dwarf and followed the waddling little being. They walked only a short distance before the tunnel opened up into a huge cavern. Terje could not believe his eyes as he looked around ! Rows of little rock huts seemed to go on for miles. Stalagmites, of varying colors, surrounded the little homes like lawn ornaments placed in front of human dwellings. And behind the huts were small gardens with various types of mushrooms growing in them. As his eyes darted up at the roof of the cave Terje noticed huge stalactites hanging precariously downward like great spears ready to impale the unsuspecting.
" I am no geologist, but it must have taken many centuries for them to form to that size ! " he whispered to himself.
Along the way they passed several Dwarves, who either ran into their huts, or stepped to the side to let them go by as if they were royalty. The startled looks on their distorted faces said it all to Terje. They did not belong here in this world of rock and earth, and as they continued it made him feel more and more uncomfortable.
At the end of the farm huts the path intersected with another and Brokk turned left. At the third rock hut on the right the Dwarf left the path and walked up to the front door of a dwelling and opened it.
" Come inside ! " he told his visitors.
" Are you hungry ? " he asked.
" My brother makes a really fine portobello mushroom soup. I think you will like it ! " the Dwarf told them.
Terje felt his stomach rumble, and rubbed it gently.
" I am very hungry. Would you mind ? " Terje asked in return.
"Not at all ! Not at all ! For distinguished guest such as yourselves it would be a great honor ! " the Dwarf told them.
Brokk placed two bowls on the table and filled them with soup. He then placed a rock cup in front of each of them and filled them with a brown liquid.
" This is a special beer made from roots. I think you will like it very much ! " he told them.
While Terje and Bente ate Brokk told them all about himself and his brother.
" Ivaldi's sons made the ship Skidbladnir, Odin's spear Gungnir, and Sif's hair. " Brokk told them as he pointed to Bente, which was missed by Terje, who was too busy eating the delicious soup.
" Loki bet my brother and I that we could not make three items of equal or greater value. But we got the better of the Mischief Maker. My brother and I made a boar with golden bristles, a golden arm ring that replicates itself, and of course Thor's mighty hammer Mjolnir ! We of course won the bet,.... and Loki paid the price ! " he explained happily.
After his guests finished their meal Brokk pointed to the rear door, and asked :
" Eitri is working in the shop right now ! Would you like to meet my brother ? "
Terje, who enjoyed the beer and soup very much, did not wish to insult his kind host, and agreed to see his brother.
Behind the hut was a workshop which had only one opening as an entrance. As they were about to walk through the doorway, into the blacksmith shop, they saw a Dwarf who was working with a piece of metal in the furnace. Startled by the sound of their arrival the Dark Elf quickly spun around. With a look of total horror etched upon his face, the one who was surely Eitri, grabbed a sword off of a nearby table and went after the intruders.
This time Terje did not fumble as he grabbed at the pad with nimble fingers and shouted :
" FROEM, BYNAR, WILLOP, DANIRA, PISTIL, MISTIL, KISTIL ! " he yelled out as though he now understood that it was he who controlled it's power.
The flash of light and boom of thunder seemed twice as intense in the confines of the cavern, but in the blink of an eye they were transported to the next world.
As the blinding light faded Terje and Bente found themselves in a beautiful meadow that was nestled in between two rolling hills. What a wonderful place ! They were surrounded by the lovely scents of thousands of fragrant flowers that were in full bloom for as far as their eyes could see. A waterfall, which had no cliff from which to cascade from, seemingly fell from the sky and poured into a little brook that ran along the edge of the meadow. And the sky was filled with the warming light of not one, but four suns, three of which were half the size of the largest.
" Paradise ! " Terje whispered joyfully.
When they turned around, however, they saw a group of ' little beings ' standing in a circle holding hands. And all of them were staring up at the newcomers with a look of curiosity etched upon their faces. Terje was about to say the chant again when a pretty little female Elf broke the circle and reached up her hand to him. Her smile melted his heart, and calmed his fears. Terje put away his notepad, and in a leap of faith, took hold of her hand. Another Elf, a male, grabbed hold of Bente's hand, and then completed the circle by holding each other's hands.
Then the Light Elves began to sing. The lovely melody was heard not only by Terje and Bente's ears, but in their hearts, and souls as well. As the singing rose in tone the elves lifted themselves, and their visitors, off of the ground, and began to dance around in a circle. First they went around in one direction, and then slowed and switched to go around the other way. Terje had never felt anything so wonderful ! It was like being drunk, and in love at the same time ! They danced in a circle all together, then with a partner, and finally with two or three elves at once.
How long they danced in the meadow Terje never could quite recall later. He did remember, and would never forget, that he never wanted to leave such a magical and enchanting place. Terje knew that he was in Ljosalfheim, but to him it felt like heaven !
- End Chapter 9
- Next : Chapter 10 : Vanaheim
- Glenn Bergen, ( Ravensheart ), © Copyright, 2017.