( Gna's Glory )
A Return To Normality
Gna picked up the severed head, and brought it over to Hofvarpnir, who had landed, and was faithfully waiting for her.
" Ugly damn thing, wasn't he ? ! " she asked her horse.
Hofvarpnir flinched and rose up on its hind legs at the sight of the bloody head.
" Yes, you are right my friend ! It would be better if this hideous thing were covered. " she told Hofvarpnir.
Gna took from beneath her saddle a cloth bag, and placed the head in it. The Messenger Goddess then mounted Hofvarpnir, and kicked it into flight. After circling the area several times Gna sighted a large hut partially hidden by a few tall trees. As Hofvarpnir quietly landed by the side of the hut she drew her sword and slid quickly from the saddle. Carefully she approached the front door of the dilapidated dwelling. With a steady hand she unlatched the door, and after a deep breath, she kicked it open !
Gna was relieved to see that the hut was empty. As she looked around the main room she spotted a large chest near the fireplace. The messenger walked over to the chest, knelt down, and put away her sword. Slowly Gna opened the massive chest with both hands. She smiled from ear to ear when she saw the sun brooch, and the golden sword that Frigga had given to Fulla to deliver, lying on top of some linens. As she removed the gifts she wrapped them in the linen to protect them. It was then she saw something at the bottom of the chest that made her very angry ! There, up against the side of the chest, was Fulla's sword. Gna gathered up the contents of the chest , including Fulla's sword, and then ran back outside to Hofvarpnir. As she mounted she barked out commands to her horse.
" First we must go back to where Vipar attacked me, find Grid's staff, and return in to Vidar' s mother. Then we will present Freyr and Gerd with their anniversary gifts at Gymir's hall ! " she shouted as she reined her horse around.
After locating Gridarvol at the pass Gna pointed Hofvarpnir straight for Grid's hall, where she proudly returned her staff with Thor's complements. Grid asked the messenger to stay for a drink, but Gna declined telling the Giantess that she had other errands to run for Frigga.
Hofvarpnir did not waste any time making its way to Gymir's great hall. Within a very short time she was dismounting at the steps of the Jotun's great abode. As she stood there pounding on the great doors, with Frigga's presents in hand, she could not help but smile. And as Gymir himself opened the door the warrior messenger took great pride in stating :
" I am Gna, and I am here on an official errand for the Goddess Frigga ! " she exclaimed boldly.
As Gymir motioned for her to enter Gna saw that Freyr and Gerd were standing just behind the Giant. Gerd placed her hands over her mouth, and gasped in horror, and even brave Freyr winced when he saw the Goddess.
" Are you hurt ?! " Freyr asked deeply concerned for Gna's welfare.
It was then that Gna realized that she was covered in blood.
" Do not worry yourselves ! The blood is not mine ! " she told them with a grin.
Freyr and Gerd were very pleased with their presents, and asked that Gna thank the All - Mother when she returned to Fensalir.
" I will tell her at once ! " Gna said happily.
As she turned to leave, however, Freyr grabbed her by the arm and stopped her.
" I insist that you stay for a drink of ale and a bite to eat ! " Freyr insisted.
Gerd clapped her hands together, and two Jotun servants came rushing in.
" Heat a bath for our guest, and I want Gna's clothes cleaned before she leaves ! " Gerd ordered.
Gna attempted to protest, but Gymir, along with Freyr and Gerd, were very persuasive. After getting herself cleaned up, she sat down with her hosts and had a hearty meal. For the first time Gna realized that she was not merely a handmaiden any longer, but a respected and honored warrior of Asgard. And she enjoyed the role very much !
As the afternoon turned into evening Gna made her apologies, and left the great hall. When she approached the stables Gna was pleased to see that one of Gymir's servants was feeding Hofvarpnir a large bag of oats. She had worried that Hofvarpnir might have been neglected in her absence. Gna thanked the servant, then mounted her steed, and kicked it into flight. With the breeze blowing through her hair she thought to herself that this was the best day of her life.
Hofvarpnir reached Bifrost in what seemed like the blink of an eye. Off in the distance Gna could see Heimdall standing proudly with the gates open. As she passed the stoic sentinel raised his great spear high in the air as a salute.
" All Hail Gna the Great Warrior Messenger ! " he shouted.
Hofvarpnir was moving too fast for Gna to thank Heimdall for the great honor, but she did nod her appreciation as she passed.
At the steps of Fensalir Gna reined in Hofvarpnir, and quickly dismounted. She untied the bloody sack from her saddle, and then ran up the stairs two at a time. She was about to knock, but then remembered that Hermod, Odin's messenger, was not expected to knock, so she threw open the doors with a great force. With one hand holding the sack with the Jotun's head, and the other gripping her mighty spear, Gna strutted confidently up the aisle.
At the other end of the hall Frigga sat on her high - seat surrounded by her handmaidens. Odin stood just outside of this circle as she approached. After a slight bow to Frigga, and a polite nod to Odin, Gna addressed the All- Mother.
" I have done as you commanded and returned Gridarvol to Grid, my lady.... and my Lord ! " she said as she nodded once again to Odin.
Gna smiled before continuing.
" I also retrieved the golden sword, and the sun brooch, and presented them to Freyr and Gerd with your compliments ! " she explained proudly.
Then Gna reached behind her back and pulled out Fulla's sword. With great pride she walked over to the recovering maiden and handed her the sword that the Jotun had taken from her. Fulla's eyes welled up with tears as she held tightly up against her chest the sword that Frigga had long ago given to her as a present. Fulla then kissed Gna on both cheeks.
" From the bottom of my heart I thank you so very much for the return of my sword ! " she told Gna happily before sitting back down next to Frigga on the floor.
Odin grinned from ear to ear.
" And the perpetrator of this dastardly crime ? " Odin asked already suspecting the answer.
Gna reached into the bloody bag, and grabbed a hold of the dead Jotun's hair. As she held up the bloody mess that was the Jotun's head she replied :
" I brought him with me ! His name was Vipar ! " she told the God and Goddesses proudly.
The handmaidens all turned their backs or looked away ! Even Frigga could not bear to look at the horrid decapitated head. Only Odin gazed upon the Jotun.
" My wife has chosen wisely ! " he told Gna with a little smile.
" Let it be remembered that you Gna are truly one of the best of all messengers ! " Odin said proudly.
Seeing his wife's discomfort Odin walked over to Gna and took the head away from her.
" Geri and Freki are hungry. I think this will satisfy their blood lust ! " he told Gna as he walked toward the doors of Fensalir.
As Odin reached the hall's exit he turned back to Gna and shouted :
" Come to Valhalla tonight for the feast ! "
Gna's smiled disappeared.
" I am not a serving maiden, my Lord ! " she shouted back angrily.
Odin chuckled and shook his head.
" Warriors do not serve my dear ! They are SERVED ! " he told Gna.
That night Gna dressed in full battle armor, and traveled to Valhalla on Hofvarpnir. The Messenger Goddess was a little nervous as she knocked upon the golden doors of the great hall. To be invited to Valhalla was a great honor. Especially for a female ! When the doors slowly opened Gna was surprised to see Syn guarding the doors. She too was dressed in battle armor.
" Odin has been waiting for you Gna ! " she stated proudly.
Syn closed the doors, then turned toward the feasting Einherjar, and announced the new arrival.
" Einherjar ! I present to you the killer of Giants ! The Great Messenger Goddess Gna ! "
Everyone stopped feasting ! Then the Eiherjar all stood up as one, grabbed their drinking horns, and raised them high in the air.
" All Hail Gna ! All Hail the Great Messenger Goddess !! " they shouted in unison.
Although there were literally thousands of warriors in the golden hall Gna's eyes became fixed on only one warrior. Standing at his bench, with his horn held high in her honor, was Valfather ! And next to him stood a Valkyrie who motioned to her...... Gna of Asgard..... to come and sit next to Great Odin as his guest of honor !
- The End
- My Next Story : ( Just in time for All Hallows Eve ) 'The Dark Witch ! '
- Glenn Bergen, ( Ravensheart ), © Copyright, 2015.