A Long Time Ago
You can’t escape your fate.
I have heard the words so many times in the last few centuries, words to live by. But not to die by.
I surveyed the battlefield, searching for any sign of Fenrir. Warriors from both sides lay dead around me. They fought bravely, of course they did, you don’t enter Valhalla without being brave, loyal and an undisputed bad ass. They will all be honored during tonight’s feast in the Great Hall.
Their deaths were not in vain, I have defeated Fenrir in battle, proving to him and everyone else, that my fate at Ragnarök, that I would fall at his hands, is wrong.
“Mighty Odin,” a voice called. I turned to find one of my warriors rushing toward me.
“What word is there of Fenrir?” I asked.
“Sire, he appears to have fled the battlefield. When the tide turned, he transformed and left through a portal.”
“Coward,” I muttered. He made me ashamed to call him my grandson. For all his posturing, his sense of self-importance, he was nothing more than a cowardly snake.
“If he returns, have him executed on sight,” I said. He wasn’t even worthy of smiting. Let the fool run.
I returned home, weary from the battle. I wanted nothing more than to wash the bloodstains from my skin and drink until I slipped into slumber.
While my servants prepared the feast, I changed out of my armor, leaving it on the floor for someone to collect.
As I was leaving the bath, I noticed them. Paw prints on the floor, leading from my bloody armor to the window and out onto the balcony.
“Come out, Fenrir. Or do you fear your king?” I said.
Fenrir stepped into the room, his armor damaged, his face twisted in anger. “I do not fear you. How could I fear a man who would start a war in an attempt to outrun his fate?”
“You say that word like you have the first clue what it means. Ragnarök has passed and the prophecy did not come to pass.”
Fenrir started to laugh, the sound verging on hysterical. “That was not Ragnarök. That was a war you started. You sacrificed all of those men because you think you are better than the rest of us. The real battle is yet to come and you will die at my hands.”
I took a step toward him. “The prophecy says that you will die too.”
“Yes, and I have accepted that. No matter what you do, Odin, you cannot escape this. Every God will fall, as will Midgard. It is written. From the ashes of the old world, a new one will be born.”
I was sick of listening to him talk. “Guards!” I bellowed.
“‘Til we meet again, Grandfather,” he said, before leaping from the balcony.
The guards rushed into the room. “He went over the balcony. Find him! I want Fenrir eliminated. And send me Loki.”
The guards left the room and I dressed in my celebration robes. Loki entered the chamber a few minutes later.
“Fenrir was here. I gave you specific instructions to ensure that he was killed in battle, no matter what.”
Loki bowed his head. “He escaped me. He shares my ability to shapeshift, there was nothing I could do.”
“You are his father! And I am yours. When I give you an order, you will follow it.”
“I will set out to find him now. I won’t rest until he is dead.”
“Take Tyr and Angraboda with you. He will most likely head for Midgard, he seems to like it there. Bring me his head, Loki.”
Loki left to fetch the others. If anyone knew Fenrir’s tricks, it was Loki. I feared that he would side with is son, but after everything Fenrir had done, he saw him for what he really was. An angry fanatic.
I walked out to the balcony, staring out at Valhalla. My kingdom. I wasn’t just tasked with keeping Valhalla safe, but the other realms too. I had visited the human world many times, they did not need our war spilling over onto their world. They were weak creatures, fragile. Beautiful women though. Some to rival the Gods themselves.
“Run, Fenrir. Run as fast as you can. I swear if I cannot catch you, I will do whatever it takes to save my home. Whatever it takes.”
About the Author:
S. K. Gregory is an author, editor and blogger. She currently resides in Northern Ireland.
“Description begins in the writer’s imagination, but should finish in the reader’s.”