It was a cold but quiet night in Midgard. The stars shone brightly in the night sky as Thor, and his companions Thjalfi and Roskva, warmed themselves by a raging fire. Thor and Thjalfi talked quietly together while Roskva cooked the deer meat that Thor had obtained for them in a large pot. Thor was telling one of his many exciting tales of his travels when suddenly the earth shook beneath their feet. Thjalfi and Roskva looked anxiously around, and then at each other, with fear in their eyes. Thor, knowing the meaning of the tremors calmly stood up and said, " Hello Mother ! How are you this evening ? Slowly an evergreen tree next to their fire took the shape of a woman. She looked old in years, but was still very pleasant to look at. " I am fine my son", replied Jord, " But there are troubling events occurring in the lands of Midgard. The Frost Giants have found a way through the stronghold, and have invaded the lands of Midgard. I have felt the dead upon my earth, and know that many of the children of Odin have fallen to the Ice Giant's spears. I made the earth quake, and caused a rock slide that killed the initial raiding party of Jotuns, but they will be back soon, and in much greater numbers than I could ever hope to defeat. Odin is very concerned for his children, and wishes you to help the humans to expell these Jotun intruders from Midgard. "
Thor looked at his mother and asked : " Why did not Odin ask me himself for my help mother? " Jord smiled and said, " You know your father does not like to ask for help Thor. Know that his thoughts are with you in this endeavor my son, and he will help you when he can. " Jord continued : " I asked Skadhi for help against the Jotuns. I felt that her experience living in the mountains, and skiing through lands of deep snow would be helpful against the Frost Giants. Skadhi, however, does not feel comfortable at this time raising her hand against her own people. Unfortunately my son you are on your own." Thor answered quickly and with his usual tone of pride : " I need not the help of others, mother. " Jord shook her head and smiled. " You are truly brave my son." she replied. Jord then reached down with one of her hands and picked what looked to be snow off of the ground and held it up. " Odin sent a Valkyrie to me last night with this coat made of the whitest of swan feathers. " Jord turned it around and then continued," As you can see it blends in perfectly with the snow, and will hide whomever wears it. " " Brynhild said that it will help in the battle with the Frost Giants." Thor looked at his mother with a frown on his face and replied : " I will not hide from my enemies mother ! " Jord shook her head and quietly said: " The coat is not for you my son. " Jord then reached the coat out in the direction of Roskva and said: " The coat is for her." Roskva looked at the coat, and that at Jord, but said nothing. Jord bent down to the young girls level and said with a smile, " Take it child. It is a gift from Odin himself ! " Roskva looked at Jord with fear in her teary eyes as she took the pure white coat. With trembling lips Roskva asked: " For me ? " Jord fully understood her expression, and replied in a soothing voice: " Yes, you child. " Roskva hugged the coat as though it were a person, and wondered if this meant she would be going on this journey with her brother and Thor. Normally she would be left behind when things became uncertain. The thought both thrilled and scared her at the same time.
Jord then turned to Thor and said in a stern voice: " Now Thor you must travel with your companions to the land of the Northway, and see for yourself what these vial creatures have done. You must find the breech in the stronghold, and from there go forth into the lands of the Frost Giants, and make them pay for what they have done. Defeat them decisively, and they will think twice about coming back to Midgard with ill intent. " With these last words the image of Jord slowly changed, and formed once again into an evergreen tree. Thor ate in silence that night while Thjalfi and Roskva talked nervously among themselves. Thor stayed by the fire in deep thought long after the children had gone to sleep. At one point he walked over to where Roskva was sleeping. As she quietly slept he saw that she was hugging the feather coat as though it were a doll, which made Thor wonder to himself why the Gods had given a little girl such a gift ?
The next morning they awoke early, and ate a quick breakfast of oatmeal, and left just as the sun was peeking over the horizon. They traveled for many miles, over white mountains, through frosty valleys, and across frozen lakes until they came to a village Thor knew as Nordkapp. Or maybe it is more appropriate to say that they reached what remained of the village known as Nordkapp. As his mother had said there were bodies lying on the ground everywhere around the outskirts of the village. Apparently they had tried to make a last stand before the Jotuns entered their village. Some lay in a perfect line which showed the position they held when they fell defending their village, while others had been thrown great distances. A few of the bodies still had the remnants, that is the part that had not melted, of the ice spears sticking out of them. The village itself had been burned to the ground, and the bodies of women and children were lying among the ashes. Thjalfi stepped foward and reached down next to a child's blackened body, and pulled out a small stone doll, which he then turned over to Thor. Thor looked at the body of the fallen child, then at the doll, and in an instance his beard began to crackle, his eyes flashed red, and his hand reached down and pulled out his hammer from his belt. He raised the hammer to the heavens, and the clouds grew dark, lightning flashed across the sky, and struck the earth repeatedly. Thjalfi and Roskva threw themselves behind a rock, and waited for Thor's anger to subside.
When Thor saw that Thjalfi and Roskva had hidden themselves behind some rocks to escape the wrath of his lightning, he put his hammer back in his belt, and shouted to his companions that it was time to go and visit the land of the Frost Giants. As Thjalfi emerged from behind the rocks he asked Thor what they were going to do. Thor' s eyes which were still red with anger shot back: " Kill them ! Kill them All !! " Roskva gasped in horror when she heard Thor's angry words. As they walked away from the destroyed village of Nordkapp Thor looked at the little stone doll and placed it in his bag. His thoughts were of Sif and his children Magni, Modi, and his little girl Thrud. The doll would always be a reminder of what he had seen this day !
- Glenn Bergen, Copyright, 2012.
Next : Part 3 : To The Lands Of The Frost Giants
Go with Odin's wisdom, Freyja's love, and Thor' s protection !