Thunor and the Helldraca

Cold was the chill that gripped the nose of the Éoten Queller. From his long sleep from the Géol Feast, he stirred. His wife, worry struck, had went to wake him. “Husband, you can sleep no longer! To wake you cannot be done! Our cows are gone! Taken in the dark of night. Not even Hama saw it!”

“Does Hama not see all, dear wife? It is like them to stay together if they are cold. Might it be that you did not look long enough?”, Thunor spoke to calm his wife, but his words did not do this. They made it worse! Her face was becoming a hot red not unlike his own in anger. “I trust you, my dear.”, he spoke swiftly. “Let me speak to Hama, and see if he saw anything.” Hama did see all that went through the gates. Had his steers and cows been lost, he should know.

Thunor stepped out to look over the fields. His wife was right, as always, it seemed. It was now his face that burned, and he made his way to Hama, to get to the bottom of this. “I saw nothing, Thunor. Your hot heartedness is more a burden than it is worth, at times! We must sit, and think.”, Hama spoke. “Nay, Hama! We must do!”, Thunor sharply said.

“Do what about which you know nothing?”, with that, Thunor flashed his hammer, but he knew he would not hurt the All Watcher. “Aye. Watch your tongue, though, before I tear it from your mouth.”. A threat for a threat, but it did little to quell his anger and restlessness. “I shall speak to the Folk Mothers.”, Thunor at last had such a thought. He parted from Hama, and went to see them.

“We saw your coming. There may be one who sneaks with shadows, that none may see. An old foe from the first days, outlawed by Woden to the depths.”, the Idesa spoke. “The Deep Dweller, Foul Hoarder, The Draca under the Worlds. Under Hell.”, Thunor knew tales of his misdeeds. He was not a foe that Thunor, even, was wanting to fight. He could wend shape, and it was only thought that the Draca was his true body. Though, none really knew. “What you must do shows itself, Hammer Holder, son of Eorthe.”, the Idesa had a speech that brought stillness him. Second only to Sibbe.

“I care not who he is! He comes to my home, takes from me. He takes from all to whom I give. He will die!”, Thunor bristled with anger. There are two goats in Thunor’s care that even the Helldraca dare not take. Those two are the goats who pull his cart, Grinda and Grista. Steadfast and loyal, they are. “Come forth, and let us go down Eormensyl, my friends! A well meant slap on their backs, and they were on their way down.

They went wind swift, and in a short time they were in Middangeard. What they saw was a most saddening sight. The land was teeming with Ice Éotens, and Eorthe was hidden amongst them. He would look to find her, as all Men hid in their homes. She was unwell. “What has happened here, in this place that was at one time so green? How have Ice Éotens come to hold so much ground since my rest?”, Thunor asked Eorthe when he saw her. “Ice Éotens have hold over the land. To keep your oxen hidden, the Helldraca lets them have lordship.”

“They shall have lordship no longer!”, Thunor bellowed with a war cry! His goats went forth, wind swift, and with the might of Heofonfŷr, he smashed into Éoten hoards! They came forward to meet him, but met their end. They yelled and howled, cursing his name! Without fear, Thunor kept going. Stout Hearted onward, and Ice Éotens yelling as they were caught in the horns of the goats, and were in the path of Thunor’s hammer.

The Ice Éotens fought back. Their lord would not back down without a fight. They shoved Thunor back, and he shoved forward. Back and forth, Thunor and the Ice Éotens fought. A woman watched the fight, and called Thunor’s name. She had for him a vat. “Come, Thunor! Take this, and drink!”, she shouted. “The sweet smell of mead, I’d never turn it away! But who are you, lady?”, Thunor asked her.

“I’m a friend of your wife’s. They call me Hrethe. I’ve come to give you this to help you fight. My sister, Eastre, will not come home until these Eotens fall.” , and Thunor picked up the vat, and drank the golden brew. Warmed and readied for war, he stepped forth again to meet his foes. He swung Heofonfŷr with all of his might, and the Ice Éotens fell all about him.

As he made his way, one Éoten, so great that even Thunor in mead love had second thoughts about fighting him, stepped in his path to meet him. “So, it is you who have slain my children? How dare you! Foul and ugly swine!”, Freóriga, the Ice Éoten King, yelled.

“Your home is atop the stone hills, and far in the North. You have no right to be here!”, Thunor shouted back. Freóriga picked up Thunor’s goats, and hurled them a furlong away. This made Thunor more angry than before, Freóriga struck Thunor, and Thunor hit the ground. However, Thunor gripped his heavy frost arm, and twisted it, and then with Heofonfŷr, smashed his head! Freóriga was shattered!

What he saw after this was what he knew was coming. From a hole that went deep into the ground came the World Bane himself. The noises of Thunor’s bulls could be heard. They were in worry, but Thunor stilled them. They could hear him from high above.

The Helldraca spoke. “You take a world away from me, Thunor. I try to lord over this world, and you will not allow it.” “You have neither the right to be lord of anything, nor the good deeds to your name! You have no right to this land, nor right to anything of mine! You have my herd of bulls and cows. If you do not give them back to me, you will die here!” Thunor bellowed, and had no wish to hear anything else the Helldraca had to say. For the Great Outlawed, Eormensyl gnawer, lord of Wyrmsele, spoke, atter breathed, when his mouth was open. He of foul deed.

The Helldraca was so long that it was said he could fly around the world in a few strokes of his wings! His eyes were like looking into death, trapping his foes. Only he had the Mægen to match Thunor, ill Mægen though it was. His skin was like a snake, but hard as stone, and his wings foreboding. His claws were sharper than swords, and his breath was fire. This, the only foe that did not at all fear the Hammer Holder. Thunor, though, had no room for worry.

He struck Thunor with his tail, and Thunor struck it with his hammer. Then he tried to grab it away with his claws, and Thunor struck his hand! He thrusted, clipped his mouth shut to bit off Thunor’s head, but Middangeard’s Warder held it open! Then the Foul Wyrm closed them, but too late! Thunor backed away, and they looked each other in the eyes. Thunor spun and struck at the Helldraca!

Around and around he went, and just as he stopped for but a moment, the Helldraca tried to clamp his teeth again, but Thunor backed away, and struck the top of the Foul Wyrm’s head with all his might! Heofonfŷr struck true! The Helldraca was dead!

Thunor pulled his body away with all of his might, and his oxen ran to him! Thunor felt weary and tired, he went to his cart, and his goats pulled him home. Behind him, the birds that once filled the land with their song were flying back! The Dawn Maiden, Eastre followed them, and even Sunne looked to be coming back from her trip south.

With Eastre came the worts that healed men, that Woden taught them long ago how to use, and many more. Thunor made his way through, and they followed. He made his way home to a gladdened hall. He ate a few his bulls, and drank many vats of mead. He then went into the arms of his wife, and together they went to their bed.

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