Búri : The Beginning Of The Golden Age
Unbeknownst to Búri, Odin had taken his boys aside before their great grandfather arrived and told them that they needed to ask him questions about the beginning time, and the events that had transpired since. Balder, like his father, loved knowledge, and was very happy to help learn about the ancient times before Asgard was established. Thor, on the other hand, did not like to be confined. The son of Jord and Odin was an adventurous sort, and even at his young age loved to explore the nine worlds, to the the dismay of his father. Thor protested ! He did not want to sit on the golden hall' s lawn all day listening to boring stories. Odin, however, sat his rebellious son down and explained the importance of what he was being asked to do. When this did not persuade the boy, Odin promised to give Thor a golden cart pulled by two magical goats that could ride upon the air if he promised to help. Thor jumped at the offer and changed his mind. For a gift so grand he was more than willing to play his part for one afternoon. Frigga had the final role in Odin's plan. She would record every word that Búri said as she pretended to be spinning thread.
Shining Balder asked the first question of his great grandfather. " Father has told us that you are the first of the Aesir Gods. Is this true great grandfather ? " he asked in an excited tone. Búri reached down and stroked Balder' s golden hair. As the Aesir patriarch looked out over present day Asgard he remembered back to a time when the years were not yet counted. As he spoke he did not look at the boys, but into the past. A past that could only be seen and explained by the one who had been present for these events. " There was a time boys when nothing existed. There was only Muspellheim with its great fires, and Niflheim with its cold and misty fog. In between these two great forces sat a void known as Ginnungagap . It was here, where the heat of Muspellheim met the cold air of Niflheim, that the ice began to melt. It was there in those drops of running water that life began. This was the birth of the first Jotun. " he told the boys.
Thor suddenly sat up from his dozing and asked : " You mean Ymir don' t you great grandfather ? " Thor said with a touch of excitement in his voice. " Father has told us about him ! " Thor added. Balder shot his brother a cross look ! " Thor..... let great grandfather tell the story ! " Balder told him angrily. Thor's eyes narrowed as they often did when he was angered, but not even Thor could remain mad at Balder for very long. " I am sorry great grandfather. Tell us more ! " Thor said, trying to sound excited.
Búri smiled at Thor, and then continued. " Ymir was fed by suckling on what is now known as the proto - cow Audhumla's teats. Audhumla itself emerged from the drips of rime not long after Ymir came to life. From Audhumla flowed four streams of milk from her rich udders. " he told the boys slowly trying to remember the details. " Everything I have told you so far was told to me by Ymir himself. For I had not come to be yet. " he added. Then Búri stroked the beard on his chin as though he could pull the memories out of the growth, and then as if a bolt of lightning had hit him he began again. " My first memory I ever had was the feeling of a rough object rubbing against my forehead. It seemed to spark my mind into thought, though I could not yet see. This rough object was the cow's tongue, and it took a great many years for the great cow Audhumla to completely free me from the salt block that I had formed in. The first vision that I had was of the Giant Ymir lying down suckling from the milk that flowed from the great cow. Every day was the same for a millennium. Ymir fed and grew, while I was very slowly licked from the salt womb that held me. " he told the boys as the vision faded.
" That must have been boring ! " Thor shouted . Búri laughed. " Actually it was all that I knew at that point . It was all new and exciting for me ! To be bored my boy , you have to know that you are missing out on something else. I did not yet have any other experiences, and therefore was content. " he told Thor. Balder grew tired of Thor grabbing all of great grandfather's attention, and tapped him on the shoulder to ask a question. " Did this change when you were freed from the salt block ? " he asked. " Yes ! " Búri replied.
Búri once again looked out over the Asgardian fields as though he were searching for something. When he found what he was looking for he slowly began again. " Once I was free I did not want to stay with Ymir and Audhumla . I left them and explored the wilderness. " he explained. Búri stopped for a moment and then pointed to the fields before them. " The wilderness that is now becoming the realm known as Asgard ! While I was away Ymir had, through his own sweat, produced offspring. They are what we call the Jotun race. One of these Jotuns was a Giantess ..... I can still see her face ..... but I can no longer remember her name ..... an eon of passing time will do that to your memory I suppose. I was looking for a mate when we saw each other, and when our eyes met we knew it was right for us to be together. From this ..... " joining " ..... was born our son Borr, your grandfather, who is now helping your father in the wheat fields. " he explained.
" Wow ! Grandfather must be very old as well ! " Thor said interrupting his great grandfather. The elder Aesir laughed. " Yes ! Almost, but not quite as old as myself ! " he told Thor. Balder then chimed in : " The birth of grandfather must have made you very happy ! " Búri' s face dropped into a grimace of painful memories. " My wife and I were very happy, but Ymir was not happy at all with our union. Ymir, who was still mad at me for leaving him, now was furious, and sent his kin Bergelmir to kill our little family. He came in the middle of the night and surprised us ! I was able to fight off Bergelmir and escape with my son, but my lovely Jotun wife was killed in the fight . " he said softly.
Thor, who had been so far playing a part, now spoke from the heart. " I am sorry great grandfather ! " I did not know that she was killed by a Jotun. " Thor told him. " And now you have given me another reason to hate that evil race ! " he added angrily. Balder remembering Odin' s words asked another question to keep the story going. " Where did you go to get away from the Jotuns great grandfather ? " he asked.
Búri tensed his body as he answered balder's question. " I traveled as far away from Jotunheim as I could. With the Jotuns living in the lands that turn north, and are covered in darkness, frost, and ice, and are battered with relentless winds, I sought sanctuary in the south where the sparks from Muspellheim gave light and warmth to this desolate land. This place where Ymir had been born from drops of thawing ice was now where I made a home for myself and my son. " Búri told him.
Búri stopped and looked over at Frigga. " Would you mind granddaughter very much if I were to ask for a horn of mead? " he asked. " I am afraid that my throat has become parched from speaking. " he told her. Frigga smiled and nodded politely to her elder. " It is not a bother at all. In fact it is an honor to serve you ! " she told him. As she left to go into the great hall she shot Balder a telling glance. Balder immediately poked Thor which provoked a small fight. Thor did not understand why his brother had poked him, but the fight only lasted until Frigga came back. When his mother was back in place to listen and record what Búri had to say Balder again asked a question.
- End Chapter 1
- Glenn Bergen, ( Ravensheart ), © Copyright, 2014.
Next : Chapter 2 : The Next Generation