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Thread: Tales from Asheim

  1. #1

    Default Tales from Asheim

    The King's Story..

    "Do you know how I tamed Biter?" King Ragnerr looked at the thrall. Hugna looked back at the King, slowly shaking her head. "The trick catch them while they're young you see... "

    He began with a nod.

    "It was a cold and dark winter's night. I was out hunting with a few of my hirdsmen and we came across this den... it was no ordinary den of wolves, not at all." He smiled to himself as he had her full attention, not at all recognizing that he had told it to her before.

    "This was a den of a great, big Giant she-wolf. The pups were a few weeks old but bigger than what you would see in regular wolves. Huge beast it was, teeth bigger than my arm it was... I had my spear ready and went for the attack, she attacked and I feigned right, then left and thrusted my spear, skewering the wolf but it did nay stop her, she slammed Olaf with a giant paw and threw him far away!"

    Ragnerr flailed slightly with his arms to show how the she-wolf had hit his hirdsman across the den. "He flew into the side of the den and only then did he stop. The others came towards it but I roared at them to hold..." He nodded to himself and grinned brightly. "I went at the wolf with my bare hands, with a thumb I pushed in one of it's eyes and then I rolled away. Grabbing a piece of bone from the ground...

    - "I hit her over the head with the bone, and saw her crash down onto the ground before I took the sharp end of it and ended her life. That's... when I noticed one of the pups biting my shin... Strong little one it was, so I took it by the scruff of the neck and carried it home with me... Biter I named him..."

    Last edited by Asfrid; 25th March 2013 at 11:10.

  2. #2


    The King's Story..

    "Fine! Harr... I can tell you the story of how I bested that big old bear who's head mounts the wall in the tavern...!"

    Ragnerr nodded to himself.

    "It was a cold night... many years ago. I and a few of my comrades were out on the hunt for a bear that had been harassing the folk on a farm not far from here... it had come in the night and taken a baby, so the father had come asking for our help..."

    "We were out for many a mile, for many a day searching for the child and the bear that took it... we followed it's marks but were always behind it, somehow it always seemed to be slightly ahead of us..."

    "A dark crow called above our heads during our wanderings, when we thought we were close... "Kraa, kraaa" it would say, and when my hirdsman tried to shoot it down it flew too high for us... We let the bird fly and kraa while we hunted... we knew, that it was a matter of time before the babe's time was done, so we made haste as much as we could..."

    "I sent one of my men on an alternate route... and he got the bear to make a wrong turn... the crow called louder as we came close enough to hear the baby's cries... We were close... we could smell the foul beast as we entered a ravine... The ravine, however...proved to be longer than we thought... so we ran for two straight days in...before! ....we caught up with the beast..."

    "And there it was also, the crow that had been following us... it was in league with the bear! It dawned on me, that it must have been warning the bear all along... So I took my hirdsman's bow and I shot an arrow through it's throat to end it's days..."

    Ragnerr made a wide gesture with his arm. Making a dramatic gesture.

    "The bear went wild, I saw the child and made the only decision I knew... I went toward the bear, head-on! Roaring as loudly as it did. was a clever ruise however, for when I attacked the bear my hirdsmen went around and took the child to safety!"

    "I fought, jumped clear of it's giant paws and ducked and parried, thrusted and spilled it's blood onto the rocks!"

    Ragnerr waved his arm eagerly as he told his tale.

    "It's claws almost claiming my face, as you can see... It was a clever beast, never coming close enough for me to thrust the killing blow... and when it did move, it moved with a speed I have never seen in a beast..."

    "It caught my spear in it's teeth and ripped it from my hands, I flew against the rocks and fell, stumbling to get up again as the furious beast came at me to end me..."

    "There I was... stumbling to my feet, my head pounding with agony and my very body aching as I saw the great beast come running forward... It's claws were as long as your forearm... And by now, I had no real weapon, all I had... was a knife, which I drew... watching the thing come at me."

    "It roared, I roared and then it took a great leap, it's jaws open - I saw death and I held up my arm toward it and with a great deep thump! It lay over me. Dead... the point of a knife sticking out from behind it's neck..."

    "I got out from under it, and roared my victory to the world... I brought the bear back to the farm... where the baby was safe and sound... they named the child after me, you know... a little girl... Ragness!"

    "I took the bear's head back home and mounted it on the wall of the tavern...and there it still hangs.."


  3. #3


    The Summer Raid (By Wrede)

    Wrede had been curiously absent lately. Not that he was much of a
    courtier generally, but lately he was only seen on his way in or
    out of the settlement and the most common life sign when he was
    home was the faint light from his study which indicated that he was
    working longer into the evening than usual.

    Not that any other than his closest companions really noticed, the
    whole settlement was an ant hill of activity. The sound of
    blacksmiths' hammers striking metal rung all through the days,
    accompanied by carpenters' saws, animals squealing as they were
    slaughtered for meat and hides and the nauseating smell from the
    tanners made parts of the settlement unbearable for those not of the
    trade. All of Asheim, from the lowest thrall to the king felt
    invigorated by the energy radiating from the midnight sun and the
    feeling of purpose; Asheim was preparing for a raid!

    Part I

    The Asheimers moved quickly over the Asgardian tundra on their way
    south. Stores had been set up along the way to provide the men and
    beasts with food and clean water, two things often in scarce supply
    for an army on the march. The warriors were in high spirits, the
    veterans telling the young warriors of previous raids they had been
    on and the young warriors bragging of victories to come.

    Wrede rode in the vanguard, his long blonde mane flowing in the wind
    as he wore no helmet on this day. Eager to keep the speed up, he had
    insisted that they would all ride. This also meant that they could not bring as many warriors as usual. This was the first raid with Wrede's command since he became commander over Asheim's forces and a cautious commander would choose an easy target to cement his position with the men and in society. But Wrede was not a man to play it safe. Instead of choosing a soft, easy target, he chose to march against his old enemies, the Hyperborean witch cult, the White Hand.

    Though their numbers were few, around a hundred strong, Wrede had
    made careful plans and with him rode some of Asheim's finest;
    Braakens, Conwulf 'the Bull', Ulwfir and Tallec.

    Part II

    The twisted body of the Ghurnaki guard slumped silently to the ground with the edge of an axe buried in it's head. Pulling the axe free, Braakens steps out of the shadows and signals to the men behind him to follow silently. The White hand keep remained unaware of their presence as they infiltrated the gate house, quickly killing the guards before they could raise the alarm.

    Having secured the gate, the main force moves in to take position for the next step. A horn sounds through the night and a mammoth trumpets in reply as it charges forward with it's head lowered towards the heavy door of the keep. The impact is tremendous as wood splinters and the Ghurnaki inside are tossed aside or impaled on the mammoth's spiked tusks as it shakes is large head. Leaping out of the saddle of his mammoth, Wrede calls out for his men to charge. An unnecessary order, as they are pouring into the hall, Tallec and Ulwfir leading the group, cutting, stabbing and bludgeoning the Ghurnaki to death.

    Jerked awake as by a thunderbolt, Asfrid opened her eyes and looked around her bedroom. Eskil was still in his cradle and Isylde was sleeping soundly beside her in bed. Sitting up and pulling her warm, woolen socks on, she roused Isylde and mumbled "There is still time" to herself as she lit a candle and hurried downstairs in just her socks and linen nightgown.

    Suddenly a door flies open and hundreds of small projectiles made out of ice perforate the few Aesir standing near the door, only Tallec manages to survive as the ice breaks against his thick shield, but not without injury. As Aesir blood pour onto the floor, three Ghurnaki witch men walk into the room, casting death and ice around them. For a second it seems that panic is about to start among the superstitious Aesir as many freeze in terror.

    Asfrid stood alone in the dark room with the candle in her hand, looking at the weave in her loom, a cold look upon her face. Calling out to Isylde to bring more light, she seated herself at her loom and began to work. "I won't let it happen" she said to herself, shuttle flying back and forth among the threads.

    Part III

    A chill breeze sweeps across the room as terror clings to the back of their minds, it's cold fingers far reaching and telling them to flee. Frozen in place, they are doomed. Then suddenly, with a roar, one of the heavy doors flies across the room and crushes one of the witch men with a sickening crunch and a surprised scream. All eyes turn to see Conwulf recover from the throw. Roused from their frozen state of terror and fuelled by anger and deep hate for such foul and cowardly magic, the Aesir quickly leap at the witch men, who obviously shaken by their brother's death try to retreat deeper into the keep.

    The Aesir are fast at their heels and quickly to catch up to the
    slower of the pair, a spear piercing his chest and pinning him to a
    wall. The metallic sound of men in armour echoes through the narrow
    passages of the keep as they chase the last one. Wrede tosses one of
    his axes at the witch man, only to see him slip away through a
    massive oak door, the axe missing by a hair and burying itself in the door. Recovering his axe, Wrede looks at the massive door. It will not be easy to break down. Time for some alternative methods.

    Asfrid relaxed at her loom. She had been weaving all night and she was growing weary. As the early morning light shone through a window, she looked down at the floor beside her, where Isylde was playing with Eskil and smiled at him for a moment, before she regained her more cold and conformed demeanor. "Everything is as it should be." she said without going into more detail as Kareth entered the room, carrying a tray of food for her exhausted matron.

    Part IV

    Wrede steps out of the burning keep, with the witch man trapped inside his room where he will burn nicely. He then muses at the fate of such a wicked creature and wipes his forehead after removing his heavy bronze helmet, when he happens to look up at the quickly brightening morning sky. Closing his eyes, he enjoys the feeling of the suns warm glow. Opening his eyes again, he spots the familiar shape of a hawk up among the clouds and smiles to himself.

    Meanwhile the men are gathering at the assembly area, carrying with them their hard earned loot consisting of clothes, jewellery and most importantly thralls. The thralls mostly consist of Hyperborean commoners, as the Aesir want nothing to do with the twisted Ghurnaki, but there are others there too, other races kept in bondage by the Hyperboreans, as thralls or to be twisted into the hated Ghurnaki-servants of the White hand.

    Conwulf observes the thralls as they are rounded up and relieved of any valuables when he spots the golden locks of a young Aesir girl among the thralls. Calling out to Ulwfir, the two huge men wade through the thralls, much to the displeasure of the men currently tethering the thralls to each other for the march home. Picking her up unceremoniously, Ulwfir leads the way as Conwulf slings her over his shoulder and carries her over to the makeshift camp where they tend to their wounded.

    As Wrede walks over to talk to Conwulf, he finds him and Ulwfir involved in a coin toss. Asking what it concerns, Ulwfir simply nods at the girl and grins hungrily. "You are well aware that everything won this day will divided fairly once we have returned to Asheim" Wrede says with a commanding voice. He then looks at the young girl and ponders for a moment, casting a glance at both Conwulf and Ulwfir. "Tallec" he then calls out "Make sure this girl is brought unsullied to Asheim. I am sure the king would like to decide her fate personally". Both Conwulf and Ulwfir seem rather disappointed, having lost their plaything, but the prospect of their share of the loot once they return to Asheim brightens their mood.


    Wrede had been leading a wounded and tired group of 37 Asgardian horsemen as they arrived at the walls of Asheim one evening, six days after the main group had come home. After they left the keep, Conwulf had been put in charge for the main group, with the order to get home as quickly and safely as possible. While Wrede took command of 40 horsemen and fought a rearguard action to keep the Hyperborean reinforcements away from the heavily laden and slow moving main group.

    The tactic had worked and the main group made it home safely, laden with the spoils of war in the form of thralls, fancy clothes, gold and jewels. There was much cheering and everyone waited with great anticipation for the rearguard force to arrive so that the loot could be divided publicly among the king and the raiders.

    Yet it took them almost a week to arrive. Tired, tattered and torn, with three men dead and tied to their saddles and some so stiff or hurt that they had to be lifted off their horses and treated by Asfrid before they could move about again. The fighting had been fierce, where Braakens had laid ambush after ambush and Wrede harassed the Hyperboreans baggage, burning their food supplies and killing their horses to slow them down until they could no longer follow the Aesir.

    It had been a hellish march back, but they were finally home and the spoils of war was yet to be divided with great celebrations to follow. The summer raid was over.


  4. #4


    The Siege..

    Winter was upon them, yet it did not stop the Hyperboreans from seeking revenge for the summer's raid. Everyone who had been present still had the victory and bounties fresh in mind, the mere memory and the chance for a battle keeping the spirits of the warriors high. Again would the sounds of war echo through Asheim as the warriors prepared for the approaching army that marched against them.

    "Those who are not fit to do battle- women, children and the old- will be escorted to safety among our Cimmerian allies."

    Those were the words she had told the women, and those that would leave with the first group. And there would be many groups leaving Asheim in the dead of night for many nights to come. Everyone taking with them what they needed, and what they could carry for the journey to Cimmeria.

    "Tonight the first group will leave Asheim, and you will be part of it."

    As would her own son Eskil. The small boy held safely by Birsa as the group of women left the King's halls after saying their goodbyes. But Asfrid would not go with them, no, she would stay with her family. Stay with her Father and Husband to whatever end. Isylde and Kareth had been tasked with caring for Almveig and Birsa.

    Saying her prayers to Ymir for their safety, as she hours later watched the group depart into the night. The outcome of the approaching siege unknown, even to her.

    "Ymir's blessings upon you..."


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