ostro_goth: (Gotland)
Teja son of Tagila ([personal profile] ostro_goth) wrote2014-09-10 01:22 am

OOM: A strange visitor in Gotland

It's harvest time in Gotland -- the grain has already come in off the fields, but there are fruit and vegetables, to harvest and store and pickle and cook and dry, everybody is very busy.

Teja has come with Egil, to show him how everything works and how people grow food -- it is all very down-to-earth here. In Italy, he'll see trucks of olives and tanks full of wine, but here, there are buckets and baskets and pitch-forks.

The Gotland children are very happy to show little Egil everything; they love the little fellow. Of course they have all their own chores in this, but they proudly show off the chores as well.
home_fires_burning: (close)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-09 11:45 pm (UTC)(link)
Her husband was right. Is right. Will have been right.

Souls aren't destroyed, not even by the Gambanteinn. They just go somewhere else, pass through to some other world--maybe this one. It's as good as any, and there's something that draws her, some trace of something familiar...

So here's a young-looking woman, clothing unremarkable, wreath of autumn flowers in her hair. She's not from here, but she may not feel like a stranger.

It's harvest time, and there's work to be done.
home_fires_burning: (close)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-10 06:58 am (UTC)(link)
Her husband had spent so long out among the people, traveled among them, lived with them, enjoyed their hospitality. She'd never had the chance herself, but he'd told her stories--what else was there to do, in the cave? He saw the world, and she saw it through his words.

But now she's here, and with her, close to her, the feeling she brings. Where he is energy, excitement, she is stillness: the warmth and quiet of lying near the hearth-fire, when the feasting and chores are all done and it's just family content with each other's company.

All her gifts are humble, but then most people do not achieve greatness.

"Thank you," she says with a smile.
home_fires_burning: (smile)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-19 06:13 pm (UTC)(link)
"It is," she agrees. "I always did love this time of year--so much work to do, but everyone does it together. One big family, helping each other prepare for the coming winter."

Winter is a necessary thing. She doesn't mind it, even given her history; it's a welcome change from living in places where the seasons don't change.
home_fires_burning: (looking down)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-21 12:26 am (UTC)(link)
She knows that look.

There's really no mistaking it, is there? He looks so much like her own sons, who looked so much like their father--and he even shines like her husband always did, more full of life than other people.

Just like her boys.

So bear with her while she stares at him a moment.

"...yes, a very nice apple," she says eventually, reaching out to him.
home_fires_burning: (looking down)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-21 12:56 am (UTC)(link)
"Thank you very much," she says, and ruffles his hair a bit, just like she used to with her own boys.

"I was remembering when my sons were that age--they grow up so quickly."

Or they never grow up at all. One day you're singing them to sleep, and the next you're watching them die.

"And his hair... such a precious boy."
home_fires_burning: (looking down)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-21 01:38 am (UTC)(link)
"All children are, everywhere," she nods. "I just haven't seen hair that red since my husband, may he walk ever in glory."

Wherever he is. Not in this world, not that she's seen, but she'll find him. He's out there.

"Will you come sit with me, little one? I know stories of a man named Egil, a brave archer."
home_fires_burning: (close)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-22 01:11 am (UTC)(link)
That first Egil is a slightly sensitive subject for Sigyn, all things considered--she's not about to sing the praises of the man for guarding the borders and killing her people, and many of the other stories she knows about him aren't exactly suitable for children. She'd never met him, herself; he was dead before she was born. But she knows someone who had known him very well, and so she knows a few other stories.

"You may have heard," she begins, "that he was the finest archer who ever lived, that he could hit any target from impossible distances. And you may have heard how he was a friend to the gods, how Thor used to stay at his house on his way to the land of the giants. But before all of those things, he was a boy--not much older than you, love, I'd say."

She beckons to the boy in the doorway, and the girls as well.
home_fires_burning: (close)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-24 05:55 pm (UTC)(link)
"They are lovely," she smiles, motioning for them to settle in to listen if they want.

She always did love children. Her own, and other people's.

So she continues, in her about-to-tell-a-story tone.

"We forget sometimes that the people in our stories, our brave heroes and our wise women, were almost all children once. Even the All-Father himself was once a baby, or so I hear. You may be small now, but someday you may be great--if you listen to your elders, learn as much as you can, and trust yourselves."
home_fires_burning: (close)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-24 08:50 pm (UTC)(link)
"He did," she says. "He was born with two--he was just the same as anyone else, but more clever maybe, and it wasn't until he wanted to be lord over all that he gave up one of his eyes. He made a sacrifice to get the wisdom he would need.

"These days, there are more people, and you can find someone who can teach you what you might need to know. They may not be in your village, you might need to travel to find them, but someone somewhere has the knowledge. They didn't have that, then. That was why he did what he did."
home_fires_burning: (close)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-24 09:49 pm (UTC)(link)
"He gained too much wisdom, and all at once," she says. "It's much better to learn a little more each day, the same way as you grow. If you were suddenly grown, all at once, you'd be clumsy--your body wouldn't feel like your body anymore. That's how it is with learning. You learn a little, you rest on it, you adjust, and then you learn a little more."

Otherwise you've got the power and wisdom equivalents of get-rich-quick schemes, and those don't end well.
home_fires_burning: (smile)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-24 11:03 pm (UTC)(link)
"Exactly that," she says with a solemn nod.

"Now, when the archer Egil was a boy, long before he ever picked up a bow, he lived on a farm in the land of the giants. He lived with his two brothers, their mother, her sister and their father. The farm wasn't too different from this one, but the sisters were wise women--their garden had plants that don't grow here, plants that do magic. But they also had herbs they used for seasonings, and one day Egil's mother sent him out to gather one to put in the food she was cooking. Even heroes have to listen to their mothers."
home_fires_burning: (smile)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-25 01:22 am (UTC)(link)
"The best heroes have strong mothers and, later, many of them, strong wives. And they take their counsel. They do chores. They know that no man ever succeeds alone, that we all contribute. Like the harvest."

Her sons had helped with chores, and her husband--when he was home, he insisted on doing all of hers. He already knew women's work.

"Egil himself had a very wise wife, and their son respected her wisdom so much that he sought it out even after she had passed into the next world. She saved his life--but that's another story."
home_fires_burning: (close)

[personal profile] home_fires_burning 2014-09-25 04:15 pm (UTC)(link)
"Our story," she says. "So young Egil went outside to get the plants his mother wanted, but when he got out to the garden, he saw that it wasn't the way it should be--that something had gotten through their fence and trampled the plants, and the one in particular he'd been sent to fetch was gone. There was no trace of it anywhere, no fallen leaves, nothing. He looked around, and he thought about what to do.

"It seemed to him that he could follow the tracks of whatever it was, and maybe it had taken the plant. Maybe he could get it back. What he should have done was go back inside and tell his mother; today, he would have done that. But the world was very different then, and he knew his grandfather's lands, so he set off in search of this intruder."

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