2019-06-15 - The North Wind Blows In


Fenris goes looking for the North Wind

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Sat Jun 15 06:43:53 2019
Location: Norway

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Fenris is hunting. A great black wolf moving among the mountains of Norway. These are snow capped even in the summer and great glaciers dominate the upper altitudes of the country. He's in the hills, not far from the village of Glomfjord, sniffing for clues.

Someone has been attacking his brood. The descendants of a period of time he spent with the North Wind, and while he'd had more pressing problems when he first heard about it, he has not forgotten it.

Nor has he forgiven it. So. Here he is. In the snow. In the summer. Nose to the ground. Growling softly.

An overly large raven flies over head, wings beating to allow her to follow the wolf as it runs. The wolf sets a good pace and she has to work to keep up. When she tires, she'll land and ride on his back.

"Anything, my heart?" They've been doing this for some time now and she hadn't expected results quickly. Her black feathers are dusted with snow as eddies on the wind, not that she seems to notice.

"Many scents, but none of them anything I'm looking for." Fenris says as he turns to head further up the mountain. They've been at this for hours. Fenris is relatively sure that there IS something to be found. What it is though? That he has no idea. No precisely where. Hence the 'doing this for hours'.

The snow gets deeper as he trudges up hill. He's a massive wolf though he's still more or less animal sized (the animal is a horse but who is counting?). Fortunately there's no one really to see him up here. Which is why it makes it odd that both of them feel as though they're being watched.

The raven wings beat down hard, putting the bird several feet in front of the wolf. She circles wide before coming back and landing on a branch in a tall tree. "Do you feel it, Fenris?"

The voice is squawky, but it's Astryds.

"The witch, she is around here, I think."

Fenris stops and sniffs. There's magic in the air. A witch. Yes. A witch he likely knows.

"This way." He says finally. The path Fenris takes is right over the spine of a particularly steep ridge and then down. It's only though as they descend down the reverse slope that they pass through something that makes both of them tingle. And then there it is. A large mansion made entirely of ice. Not a castle really, but a house for sure. A REALLY big house.

"Well. I think that should have rung the doorbell. Shall we see if anyone is home?"

There's a sparkle of light at the front door and Astryd can feel the wind pick up. It's cold.

Astryd drops from the branch, landing between the wolfs shoulder blades and balancing easily. If they're going to face a witch, even an ex-lover of Fenris', she wants to be fresh. "I should have bought Cuan, my heart. Do you want me to summon him?"

Cuan, Fenris Grand son from the North Wind.

As they approach the mansion the bird takes wing again, but only long enough to transform. It's not long before a tall, stern blonde is on the steps of the mansion - with a fur wrap pulled about her. "She's coming. I can feel it."

Indeed she is. There's a rush of wind that resolves into a whirlwind, kicking up snow which piles onto itself in the shape of a woman. Soon enough that takes on the appearance of pale flesh and nearly white hair. She looks over Fenris and Astryd.

"Fenris." She says in a tone that might either be stern or perplexed. "I told you I didn't want further entanglements with your fate. What are you doing here with your woman? No mortal, this one. Who is she?"

"Astryd. My Raven. I spoke of her I believe."

The Witch looks Astryd over more carefully. "So this is she. I expected something… different."

Astryd takes her place at Fenris' shoulder, chin tilted up just a little. "My lady." she answers, bobbing the smallest of curtseys. Fenris has named has named her, no need for more.

"Might I ask what you did expect, my lady?" she's intrigued. Then again, the Raven and the Wolf are an unusual pair. "Please forgive our intrusion. It is I who suggested we find you, there is something afoot that is stalking your bloodlines and I fear for my friend, Cuan."

The Witch should know that name but the news itself should startle her. "Cuan has told me that some of the Pack have gone missing."

"Someone more… traditional, I suppose." The Witch says. Aurora is her name, Fenris had mentioned that before. As in 'Borealis'. Who gave her that name is unclear. She is to many simply 'The North Wind'.

"Cuan. I remember my darling Cuan. What is this she speaks of, Fenris?"

"Someone has been targeting my descendants. I'm trying to find out who."

The wind blows chill. Very chill.

"What have you found out?" The woman asks darkly.

"More traditional?" That stops Astryd and she glances at the wolf beside her. More … traditional.

"A little, my lady, but nowhere near enough. Someone seeks to unbalance things, to hasten the arrival of Ragnarok. We can feel the threads of Fate tighten about us. They sought to set the pantheons against each other. For the meantime, that's been handled. But there's a Sluagh been summoned. It is this, we believe, that is targetting Fenris' get. Seeking to unbalance him."

"Cuan can get a trail, of course, but sending the Pack after this is dangerous."

"Traditional Valkyrie. Armor. Marks of Odin. Sprinkling your sentences with thees and thous." Aurora peers at Astryd. "But you're not are you? Fenris didn't mention when we were together but you're… not a creature of Asgard anymore are you?"

Is she? She's not a servant of Asgard anymore, certainly.

"A Slaugh. I have not seen or heard of such a thing here." She says, arms folded. "However… I have heard tell of strange happenings in the area of Galdhopiggen…"

Fenris lets out a breath. That's at the other end of Norway from here. "Highest peak. What kinds of strange things."

"Lights mostly. Strange lights. And encounters with… odd beings. The locals are saying it's haunted."

Haunted. Might be a Slaugh. Might be something else.

"I haven't been in Asgard for most of my life and I've lived on Midgard for nearly twice as long as lived there, so I suppose my language is different." Is she not a creature of Asgard any longer? Astryd hasn't thought on that. But if she isn't, then what is she?

"It might be a Sluagh, my Lady, though that's the most likely in our estimation." The Valkyr listens carefully and nearly groans at the mention of the location. Thank goodness that Fenris can open Ways.

"Then it seems that's where we need to travel." Astryd is, as ever, practical and action oriented. "We won't know what's there till we get there. Will you accompany us, Lady?"

"I shall yes. I think I might be offended if you did not ask." She smiles a little. "But why your children Fenris? And why now? It's not like you've ever had much to do with them."

Fenris is indeed not a close relative. After a few generations he's often little but a legend if he's remembered at all. So why now indeed?

"Astryd mentioned, possibly to attempt to unbalance me."

"Mmm, perhaps, but they'd be better off attacking something you're closer to for that. However… there are… rituals that make use of the blood of powerful beings. Have you considered that you, or others, might be targeted through the blood of your progeny?"

Fenris had not. And that's a little frightening.

"I am not stupid, Lady" Astryd murmurs. "Three is better than two, when facing the unknown." Fenris knows the Valkyr, his Valkyr, is still a little unsettled after her recent brushes with the Pantheons.

And there's the matter of the mark that is burnt into her chest.

"Rituals?" Astryd pales, if that's possible, at the thought of that. Aurora is right though - a good way to unbalance The Destroyer is to attack his Valkyrie. That had bought the Destroyer closer to the surface than anything had in many decades, if not a century or more.

"What sort of things are we talking about?"

"Depends on the ritualist really." Aurora says. "It could conceivably be used to attempt to kill Fenris or drive him mad. Or it could be used to track him. Or find other members of his bloodline."

The North Wind presses her lips into a line. "Blood is very powerful and the blood of beings such as you two is more powerful than most. You cannot escape your blood. The link will find you no matter where it is. I'm not saying that IS what's happening but it is a possibility that should be considered."

Fenris grunts. He's considering it now and clearly doesn't like what he's thinking of.

Astryd lets out a growl as she considers the possibility. Like Fenris, she has descendants scattered across the world. She's just less … in touch with them.

Were they being hunted as well? She doesn't know and her inquiries were proving harder to prove.

"Could they use the blood of descendants to cause things to happen?" Astryd wonders, gesturing for Fenris to open the Way to Galdhopiggen. "If our blood is strong, as you say, is it strong enough in our line to meet prophecies?"

Because if it is, that's a scary thought.

Fenris extends his hand and a tear in reality opens up. He steps through onto a path of stardust amid the winds of the in between. After the other two follow through it shuts behind them.

"If they have the knowledge yes. You could be targeted via a sympathetic link. Or fatebound, possibly. It would depend on how good the practitioner with the blood is. But I don't think anyone small time would do this, Astryd." Aurora makes a 'small' gesture with her finger and thumb. "The risk of Fenris showing up and being upset is too great."

"The risk of me showing up and being upset is getting greater by the moment." The Wolf-God says as they walk.

"Did you have a prophesy in mind, Astryd?" Aurora asks.

Fenris' growly demeanour doesn't seem to upset his Valkyrie. She takes his arm as they step through the Way, reaching up to press a kiss to his cheek when they exit.

"I certainly wouldn't complain if you were to show up and be upset. You saved me from Tammuz when he would have bound me. And I know what it cost you when you did." She's keeping it light, but it's worrying.

How many times could Fenris be pushed before goes full Destroyer?

"Nothing solid, Lady Aurora, just an inkling. The prophecy surrounding Ragnarok is my concern. If they could drive one or more of Fenris' to embrace their nature and wreak havok and drive my Daughters to enter battle with them, in a way that part of the prophecy is met."

There's something niggling at her. "I might like to read more about us before I say more."

"The prophesies surrounding Ragnarok are one of the trickiest. They're layered, not just in meaning but in number. So many dominos that all depend on the one before it falling just right. It would seem to be an easy thing to derail, but there is an active hand that pushes it back onto course."

Fenris and Astryd have both experienced that, Aurora knows.

"I think your Wolf can certainly arrange that."

Fenris smirks slightly and looks at Astryd. "Read about us? Not in the papers? How novel. You know we are rarely mentioned by name, yes?"

"I can't think of any other reason to involve Fenris or his get." Astryd speaks quietly as the head in the direction that Aurora has sent them. "I know for a fact that I am not mentioned by name. I'm sure Odin struck that from our histories when he sent me packing. But the Valkyries are, are they not?"

"Reading about us in the papers is only fun if someone is upset or offended by our actions." They're well enough, they circulate in society when the fancy takes them. And normally the both generate a lot of jealousy.

"How far to our destination?"

"You know how the ways are." Fenris murmurs as they move. The swirling stardust gives way to a forest path. This is the more familair Neverwhere and sometimes when here alone woth Astryd Fenris will stray off the path amd see where it takes them. He has often wished to remain here but it is too dangerous to ignore fate.

"There are records of the sagas that the humans wrote in this nation and nearby ones." Aurora notes. "Though acting here risks drawing the attention of Asgard. What is it that you hope to find? A loophole? Or some accidentally recorded plan that was let slip to the mortals?"

"I'm wondering, why target Fenris descendants." Astryd answers "We don't know if my descendants have been targetted. But what if they could the be coopted to act in our place?"

"And I do, my heart." She's very easy around Fenris. Aurora will notice that. Astryd loves Neverwhere and is more than happy to wander the forests but today, they have a destination in mind.

"Only if Asgard recognises the pattern." Astryd points out. "We only really became aware of it because my heart read the weaves of Fate. I'm not sure, Lady Aurora. But the latter seems entirely possible, doesn't it? Some puffed up deity or demi-deity boasting about their plans to an ordinary mortal - what's the danger in that?"

"Well it pisses me off. That may well be the point." Fenris mutters. "But it is a good question all the same. We should see if your descendents are under threat." The Old Wolf likely knows the direction in which his raven ahs been thinking. They walk continues. Its early summer in this forest and smells like it. There's even bird somg to listen to.

"What if they had both?" Aurora frowns. "Forget having your descendents reenact your battles by proxy. They might try to force one of you to kill the other."

Fenris does not at all like that thought.

"Oh gods let things slip all the time, Sometimes on purpose, You canbe sure it was not the Aesir who let slip all of their foibles. The Tuatha or the Oylmpians likely did that."

"When did you get older than me?" Astryd squeezes Fenris' arm. "And whoever is this, knows that you have me at your shoulder. They've likely worked out if they've been watching us long enough, that I have an interesting effect on you when you call the Destroyer."

"I shall, my heart, find out what's left of my family. Perhaps Miss Brandt might be able to assist there." Tracking Daughters is often more difficult that tracking Sons. Daughters names change through the years.

"It would take a lot to force my hand against Fenris, Aurora." Astryd frowns and glances at the man she's walking with. She didn't say impossible but it's nearly that. Could he raise a paw against her?

"If we assume it's a leak of information done on purpose, we might also assume it was done some time ago, waiting for the right threads of fate to converge."

"Or that it was done without a thought for fate, and fate is just really sneaky about making threads line up." Fenris makes a face. Because fate is sneaky like that. "And I've always been older than you."

No. He hasn't. Fenris has in fact NEVER been older than Astryd but he likes to tease. He does have a sense of humor, the God Wolf. It's understated and sometimes quite wicked but it IS there. It's just that not many people get to see it.

"It would. But if you had a sufficiently powerful being, they might. You are both potent but neither of you are magi and there are gods out there who most certainly ARE."

Odin is one of them. But there are most certainly others.

"What effect do you have on him when he rages?" Aurora asks.

"Only in Mindset." Astryd pokes the man before resting her cheek on his shoulder a moment. "And you might well be right, that it was done on a whim."

"You think we might be influenced by a suitably powered spellcaster?" Astryd considers that and she doesn't like the implication. "It wouldn't even have to be an enemy, just someone convinced that our partnership is a danger to the weave and continuation of the Realms as we know them."

There's enough out there like that. Who would weigh the good and the bad and act accordingly.

Aurora gets a faint smile at her question. "A mild one really and he's never really pushed the boundaries." she looks to Fenris to see if he will answer as well "I call him back, remind him there's something worth saving the Realms for, I think." Which is why, when she's threatened is a dangerous thing.

"That is also possible." Aurora says, inclining her head somewhat. "The fact that it hasn't happened yet should tell you how difficult it would be, but it's not impossible. Very few things are, as Fenris well knows."

Fenris nods at that statement. In all his study of magic he has found that there is only one real rule: Anything is possible if you're willing to pay the price. It's the price that usually keep people from messing with reality - or one another - too badly.

Astryds explanation gets a rather surprisingly grim look. "Then you are at the most risk of all. If Fenris has nothing left to fight or live for…"

"… I become what I hate." Fenris finishes the thought.

Astryd stops moving. She might drag Fenris to a stop, given her arm is still looped through his. She hadn't considered that angle and her grey eyes are worried.

"I am the biggest risk, you mean." she says quietly. "Perhaps, my heart, I should take a journey within the Realms. Sequester myself away so that no harm can come to you."

She's spent time away from him before. Decades at time, on a number of occassions. This wouldn't be very different, would it?

Fenris stops - rather abruptly - when Astryd does and looks back at her with dark, concerned eyes. "That also makes you the most vulnerable."

Which it does. Taking a journey might do well if done in enough secrecy but how exactly does one hide from fate or it's agents? And what might happen to him while she is gone?

"No, I think that this is not safe right now, raven." The Wolf God finally says. Aurora doesn't add anything. She just stops and watches the other two.

Astryd returns Fenris concerned look with one of her own. "It does, there is that." the Valkyr answers softly casting Aurora a very faint smile. "Forgive my rudeness, Lady."

She has been rude and she knows it.

"I will not go then, my heart, but I must be vigilant." She wonders now if that bow wasn't with Tamuz for good reason.

"Well we have several places where we might be attacked. Is there anything we can do in the meantime?"

"Well I think it starts with figuring out who is attacking Fenris' kin. And why." Aurora says.

Fenris nods in agreement. "If I can get a scent I can tell much. In the mean time it might be about the right moment to call a few favors in. We're owed a number, as I recall."

Both Fenris and Astryd can be quite helpful either individually or together and consequently they have resources they can call on among their peers. It's always a good question who will pay up when the time comes, but it might be time to find out.

"And do not worry about it, Astryd." The North Wind says as they begin moving again.

"Then we are doing everything we can at the moment. Let us head to Galdhopiggen and see what we can find. I will visit Cuan and the Pack, I think you should too, my heart and Lady Aurora. It will do the young ones good to see you both."

That she's accepted Aurora so readily and easily might boggle mortals minds.

"And a number of favours and then some." Not that she expects them all to deliver and finding some of them, is going to be difficult.

The North Winds acceptance is met with a nod.

The Valkyr is still worried though, she can't help it.

"Well start with Bast. She at least likes us." Fenris mutters. It won't be long before they've made it to the other end of the path, but after that they'll still have more walking to do he's sure. It's a good thing none of them really mind the cold.

Because even in the height of summer the far north is frigid.

"A visit sounds like an excellent idea. Just as soon as we've seen to business here. Now. Let's go see what's waiting for us."

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