I'm working on Hertha's lineage.
The sky was darkened with shiny beads of light, racing towards the ground. With each collision, the little fat rain circlets chimed into the wind.
“The people have forgotten us,” insisted Ares as he walked to the back of the garden and rested his hands on a small wet glistening pillar.
“No, that’s not it. The people have no need for us. They have not forgotten us, they have shrines with our likeness centered in their gardens. Our people believe us to be dead and gone because they are defeated,” explained Phobos as he took a small circlet into captivity. “Yet, there are mortals who still believe in Gods. Those mortals are panicking because they feel a great war is about to open up and pour chaos onto their grounds. Some are worried about never being able to join their brothers in the great Valhalla. Our people are silent. I have summoned you here because their panic gives life to me and it makes me wonder, father. We can be great again. We can silence the other Gods by taking their believers. We need only one follower who can perform magical works by way of us, and bring back the Greek Gods.”
“We are dead, Phobos, are we not? Zeus wanted all of the Gods forgotten and buried. He wanted us to stay out of the human’s problems.”
“Zeus, is weak. He gave his power up to protect the mount. Are we to waste away because he is no longer great? Ares, you still have the power over war. You can become the new leader over Mount Olympus. We are not dead, we are not weak, and we did not give up who we are to be forgotten by these mindless people. What if we can make new followers and bring people back to us, would it not be worth more than anything we have seen? I feel alive again, and I feel the need to thrive. Are you with me, father?”
Ares looked down at his dark trousers and picked up a small bug. “Yes, and I know exactly what to do.”
Scandinavia Eve of Mischief
The sky was almost fully darkened by a vast shade of darkness as Aase ran behind a tall swollen tree. With small branches cracking around her in every direction, Aase froze once again. There she stood, holding her relics in her hands while Vikings circled her domain. She closed her eyes and prayed the Gods would bless the darkness to come with haste. After finishing up her prayer, she opened her eyes to cold blue orbs beaming up at her lips. “Get away from me, Hafling.”
The blue orbs grew larger as the Viking came closer and pressed his hand against her breast. “I like tall ones.”
“Do you?” Aase plunged her knee into his ribs until he hit the ground with a loud thud. “Do you like tall lasses now?” Before she was able to deliver another blow a large hand grabbed her by the hair and pushed her against the tree.
“Do it! Show this sackless whore what we do to bitches.”
Aase felt her face being scraped against the tree’s bark. Before she was able to take a breath, she felt her dress being ripped from behind. The tall warrior grunted and pumped her hips over and over, Aase slowly felt her legs give way. She tried to brace herself once more, but she was caught off balance by the stirring of a hot liquid bursting into her body. After it was over, she pulled her dress together and rubbed the bark out of her eyes.
The small man walked up to Aase and grabbed a handful of her golden hair. “Don’t you want to know, whose barn you carry?”
Aase tried to pull away, but he wouldn’t let her. He motioned for his servant to come into sight. “Meet my slave!”
Aase felt sick once again. She had been raped by someone who wasn’t even a Viking. She looked at the stranger and noticed his dark flowing hair. He frowned as she threw up near the Viking.
“You vile creature, you allowed someone to rape a Laird’s daughter. Odin will kill you for this.”
“Worry about your womb,” grunted the Viking as he knocked her head into the tree.
A few hours later Aase woke up to a group of women standing around her. “Who did this to you?”
“I don’t know. It happened very fast,” lied Aase as she tried to cover herself.
“We have to tell father. Surely he will make him marry you,” demanded her sister.
“Nei, there is no need. I killed him.”
“Aase, what if you’re pregnant?”
“I’ll think about that when the time comes.”
Scandinavia Present Day
“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!”
“Go back to sleep, you sackless gurl. The men will be needing that torch soon. You better figure out how you plan to replace it before they figure out it is missing. We have a few more hours before the sky brightens up,” snapped 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, like yourself,” snorted Erica. “You are hearing things. What can a skinny twig of a gurl like yourself, do in the great battle? You my dear, are letting all of the elders get to you with their Odin talk.”
“We all have a place in saving our people’s future. My slenderness makes me quicker than most. What about our ma’s vision? She said we were destined to be special. Do you not recall it? Besides, I know what I heard. I heard it in my own ears. I could even feel his cold breath on my neck,” whispered Hertha as she ran her fingers across the side of neck.
“Aase, this is your doing,” insisted Erica as she frowned. “Our Aase said a lot of things, and none of them made any sense.”
Hertha shook her head and put on a long dress with a thick brown cloak. “I know what I heard, and I believe her. She was always right and she knew about the Gods. I’m not sleepy anymore, 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 a heavy sheet of icy 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.
The wind blew violently forcing Hertha’s braid to unravel and fall below her shoulders like a river of gold. Hertha held her cloak tighter against her body and held her head down. “Who are you?”
“I am your protector, your leader,” whispered the wind.
“Are you Thor? Are you sending me into battle, Mighty Thor?”
The voice was quiet for a few seconds. “Just go, Hertha. We are depending on you.”
Hertha moved faster through the thick snow until she came upon the river. “Nei, it’s frozen. I can’t do anything. It’s hard as a rock.”
A large boulder started to roll from the mountain beside the river. Hertha ran behind a large tree as the rock hit the icy river just adjacent to her body. “Go now, swim to the bottom of the rock and there you will find it.”
Hertha placed her cloak on the ground and mumbled a silent prayer. “Gods save me now.” She rushed down into the icy river. As she was swimming downward the waters started to harden. “I’m going to die.” She pushed forward until she made it to the rock. By the time she made it, the water was quickly turning back to ice. Near the ground she saw something shiny shimmering. With her strength fading, she swam deeper until she was on top of the long shiny metal. “It’s a sword.” She grabbed the sword and began her journey to the top of the river. With each movement she could feel her life slipping away. The sword was cutting away at the ice until finally she was near the top. Her body floated to the bank and her eyes closed.
“Now that you have found my gift, we must talk.” The tall man bent down and brushed his long dark cloak against Hertha’s face. “Hertha, hear me now. Listen not with your trained eyes, but with your heart. You are needed for a great cause. The Ragnarok will soon be upon us, and only the best of feigra manna, will make it to great Valhalla. I need a guardian like yourself. I will give you the gift of life and you will vow to serve us always.”
“Anything you say, Great Thor,” whispered Hertha weakly.
Ares held his cloak together and smiled. “You have been chosen to die a great death for your people, but you will be reborn. You will no longer be just Hertha. You are now be Hertha the Great Valkyrie and this sword will be your protector, it is called ULFBERHT.”
A wave of confusion washed across Hertha’s face as she slowly placed her hand around the sword's uniquely shaped hilt. The sword was longer than her arm with oddly shaped letters running down the fuller. With shaking arms, Hertha tried to hold the sword upwards in the air, but the blade was too heavy to maintain.
Ares took hold of the sword, and smiled. "Be patient, we are not finished yet.” Ares grabbed Hertha by the face and looked into her eyes. Before her head hit the ground, he was off once again.
The snow started falling once again, covering both Hertha and the sword. The coldest prompted Hertha to open her eyes once again. “Thor, give me strength,” demanded Hertha. She grabbed the sword and thrust it into the cold frozen ground. “Nei, I can do this.” She pulled herself up by pressing her weight on top of the hilt. After she made it to her feet she looked around. Her eyes were now focused. She no longer had problems with seeing objects far away from her. She grabbed the sword and flung it in the air. “By the Gods, I am great.”
Erica reached down for the wooden knob sticking out from the door as Hertha was nearing the entrance. “Are you mad, gurl? I was about to send the men for you. If you don’t want to be treated like a barn, you need to act your age.”
“I’m going to fight in the next battle,” insisted Hertha as she pulled her wet clothes off and placed them in a corner.
“Not this again—we have talked about this. You are not fighting. You are not a warrior. You need to gain the attention of one of the Lord’s sons. He has plenty and you can gain honor.”
Hertha looked at Erica sternly. “The Lord’s sons are all sackless.”
“You can be beaten for that,” grunted an older man holding a stein in his hand.
Hertha laughed and stepped into a pair of trousers.
“What are you doing, gurl?” Erica grabbed a dress and pressed it against Hertha’s chest. “Are you looking for a fight?”
Hertha pushed the dress back in Erica’s arms. “You wear it. I will not wear another dress. Why must I feel a draft drifting up my arse every moment of the day? I can’t fight with a dress. They have on trousers and thick cloaks. They have warm boots. I want warm boots too.”
Erica smiled nervously as the men started to gather around. “For the love of Odin. Just go before you can’t go.”
With a big grin springing across Hertha’s face, she reached for the door. Before she could open it, a large arm landed on her shoulder. “Let me go.”
“Take off those trousers,” hissed a tall man with his hair hanging below his chin.
“Let go of me.” As the words came tumbling out of Hertha’s mouth, the man struck her across the cheek. Hertha reached up and grabbed the man’s beard. She continued to pull him closer until he grabbed her by the shoulder. She placed one leg firmly behind her and grabbed him once again with both hands on his chin. “I said, let me go.”
The man reached down and placed his hand on Hertha’s hip causing her sword to fall to the ground. Before she could grab the sword the man picked it up and held it to the light. Hertha frowned deeply and reached for the warrior’s arm. “Give me that, it isn’t yours.”
“It isn’t yours either. Who did you take this sword from? You’re a thieving little, twit. I’ll show you.”
Ares looked down and shook his head. “Phobos, this is your idea. You might want to help your little warrior.”
Phobos smiled as he looked down at the warrior. “Done.”
The warrior grabbed his head and looked around the room. “Where am I? “Who are you?”
Hertha grabbed the sword as the men stood around looking confused. “I have to go.”
Erica looked at the door. “I’ll come with you.”
Hertha pushed the door open and grabbed a nearby torch. “You better hurry, I feel a storm brewing our way.”
“Quickly, come this way,” whispered a tall man with brown wavy curls flowing down his back.
Erica pushed Hertha towards the side of the building. “Who are you?”
“The gods have sent me to escort you to safety.” Phobos pulled Hertha near his chest as other Viking warriors were coming from the inn. “Come now.”