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Viking Sagas. 10: Apples of Iduna - part 4

Viking Sagas. 10: Apples of Iduna - part 4

Loki and Iduna are flying back to Asgard - he as a falcon, she as a sparrow.

The story may be heading for a rather boring it's just as well that eagle-giant Thiassi is after them...

As Loki and Iduna near Asgard they can see Odin and Heimdall standing on the battlements. Heimdall appears to think it's bonfire night because, at an instruction from Odin, he gathers firewood and sets it ablaze.

Thiassi is almost upon them. Loki and Iduna dive into the smoke caused by the bonfire...they can see nothing...collide with eachother and fall at Odin's feet...where Loki turns himself back into his normal shape and Iduna into hers.

Then Heimdall fans the flames. Thiassi's wings are scorched...he flaps them furiously...but he can't stay up...and he is swallowed in the fire.

Thiassi is defeated but Loki still has a problem: Iduna has been nowhere near him and he's still growing older and weaker. So Odin, Loki and Heimdall go to find Iduna. But when Loki asks for an apple she hesitates...

What should happen to Loki? What would be the best ending? Forgiveness for Loki...or punishment?

Viking Sagas - supporting resources:

  1. Viking Sagas - text of Part 10 to print

Viking Sagas - text of Part 10

10. Apples of Iduna: part 4

Story by Nigel Bryant

Iduna: Oh, Loki, look! The tower and the walls of Asgard! There’s Odin waving to us and Heimdall too! I’m home! Oh, what happiness!

Loki: Yes - we were also most there! Safe and sound. Not much of an ending is it? A bit boring really. So if you thought the story needed another twist you’ll be glad to know that:

Thiassi: I’ll get you, Loki!

Loki: Yep, Thiassi was back in eagle shape and speeding after us. And he was catching up fast!

Iduna: Oh, Loki, what are we going to do?

Loki: How should I know? Flap your wings and pray that Odin can think of something!

And down on the city walls of Asgard Odin and Heimdall could see it all...

Odin: Heimdall, look! An eagle swooping after them!

Heimdall: It must be the giant, Thiassi!

Odin: There’s no time to lose. Gather every twig and branch you can.

Heimdall: Twigs and branches?

Odin: Just do it. Quickly! Hurry, hurry!

Loki: And mean while back in the sky...

Keep going, Iduna, faster.

Iduna: He’s getting closer every second!

Loki: Eh, what’s Heimdall doing down there?

In the distance Heimdall seemed to think it was bonfire night. He’d put all the wood he could find in a big pile.

Heimdall: There, that’s the lot.

Odin: Splendid, Heimdall, now light it, light it as fast as you can.

Loki: And I shouted to Iduna:

A bonfire - what’s the use of that?

Thiassi: Loki, you dirty double-crosser.

Iduna: Thiassi is almost on us!

Loki: Into the smoke Iduna quickly!

We plunged into the smoke, while back on the walls...

Odin: Heimdall, when I give the word fan the flames!

Heimdall: Yes my lord!

Odin: Let the falcon and the sparrow fly through the smoke then make the fire roar!

Heimdall: Here they come!

Loki: We flew straight through the thick black smoke. Iduna coughed and gasped for air! We could see nothing; we crashed together and fell to the ground at Odin’s feet. Where I turned myself back into my real shape -

Odin: Loki!

Loki: Iduna into her real shape -

Odin: And lovely Iduna!

Loki: And the apple pip into the basket of apples once again.

Heimdall: Look out - Thiassi is swooping down!

Odin: Now’s the moment - make the fire blaze!

Loki: The flames roared and flared high and as Thiassi swept towards us they scorched his wings and he began to lose height!

Thiassi: What have you done to me?

Loki: He couldn’t stay up. He beat his wings but he couldn’t fly! And his huge body was swallowed in the fire.

Loki: A little later Iduna returned to her garden and all the gods and goddesses gathered round holding out their hands to receive an apple. And as they bit into the fruit their eyes light up and their faces brightened. The lines and the wrinkles melted away.

So is that the ending of my story? After all, everything is sorted out, isn’t it? The gods are young and beautiful again; Iduna has been rescued; the wicked giant is dead. We’re back to where we started, everything is prefect. Or is it?

Loki: Perhaps you feel there is a question hasn’t been answered - what punishment Odin was going to give me for helping the giant Thiassi and, if that wasn’t bad enough, I had a problem with Iduna as well. She hadn’t given me an apple yet. In fact she hadn’t been anywhere near me. I was feeling terrible. I was on my last legs. So I went with Odin and Heimdall to find her.

Odin: Iduna one of us haven’t had an apple yet...

Iduna: Oh, who my lord?

Loki: Who’d you think? Me!

Odin: Yes, Iduna, Loki.

Loki: But she didn’t move. And then Heimdall said:

Heimdall: Thanks to Loki we almost died.

Odin: But thanks to Loki we’re back to health.

Heimdall: Only because our bonfire saved them. Leave the traitor to die.

Odin: Mmm, what do you say Iduna?

Loki: How do you think she answered? If you could decide the end of my story what would you like Iduna to say? What would be the best ending? Forgiveness for Loki? Or punishment?

As for me - I shan't forget what Heimdall said. I’m off to get my own back on him as soon as I can! Bye!

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