“Wake up, my child. You are needed for the great Ragnarok, go now.” Hertha grabbed her torch and flung it around. “Who’s there? Come out!”
“What are you doing? Why do you have a torch near your head? Go back to sleep, Hertha, and give me that torch. The men will be needing it when they go for their next hunt. We have a few more hours before the sky brightens up,” moaned Erica as she pulled the thick elk’s skin, over her shoulders.
“Nei, someone called out to me. The voice said I was needed for the Ragnarok.”
“The Ragnarok, and a twig of a girl,” snorted Erica. “I’m sure you are hearing things, Hertha. What can a skinny girl like yourself do in the great battle? You my dear, are letting all of the elders get to you with their Odin talk.”
“I am not and I am not that skinny. What about our ma’s vision? She said we were destined to be special. Do you not recall it? I know what I heard. I heard it in my own ears. I could feel his cold breath on my neck.”
“Go back to sleep, Hertha.”
Hertha shook her head and put on a large pair of trousers. “I know what I heard. I’m not going to bed, I’m going for a walk.”
As the sun came up in the morning sky Hertha was able to take in an unbridled look at the land. The snow was ankle deep and the branches were covered with snow. The white blanket was so heavy that it bent the branches of the trees, causing them to brush against the ground. While the branches were cracking loudly underneath the heavy snow, animals were trying to escape with their very lives.
“Go to the river,” whispered a voice from the wind.
Hertha turned around and looked for the owner of the voice. “Who’s there? Say it again.”
“Go to the river, and stick your hand in the icy waters until your fingers start to burn,” demanded the voice.
“Why should I? Why would I do such a stupid thing? You wish to mangle my hand,” snorted Hertha.