2019-07-17 - In Need Of A Swordarm


Fenris invites Sif over to talk about Astryds small challenge

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Wed Jul 17 05:45:42 2019
Location: 74-36 62nd Street

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Sif has a standing invitation to come enjoy Fenris and Astryd's hospitality but this evening they have actually requested her presence. The dinner tonight is a roast. It's a simple recipe, with herbs and carrots and potatoes, but the meat is good (possibly relatively fresh) and it is cooked with skill and care.

Fenris is, as is often the case recently, sitting at the table reading a book titled 'Tales of Old Japan.' It's topical, as it happens but he looks quite an interesting sight. The Destroyer. At the table. With a pair of reading glasses on.

He doesn't need them but he uses them sometimes in this persona.

Arriving at the exact time she'd said she would, Sif knocks and carefully shifts the sack containing her visiting gift for this time around. It's mead again, but also something that can serve multiple uses for her hosts: a set of knives that, while of Migardian make, are of a quality almost approaching that of standard Aesir-made cutlery.

She waits patiently, both glad for the chance to visit and curious as to why she was sent the summons.

Astryd is setting the food on the table when Sif arrives, moving far more slowly than she usually does. Fenris gets a smile as the knock sounds "You look … distinguished … when you wear those glasses." She murmurs, going to answer the door.

When she opens the door, Sif will see a tired and drawn blonde Valkyrie. "Come in, Lady Sif. Welcome to our home, you are of course, just in time." The brunette is shown in and offered a glass of mead before going to stand by Fenris, her hand resting lightly on his shoulder.

Fenris chuckles. "That's why I wear them." He looks older too. Which is sometimes useful given that he doesn't generally visibly age past a certain point and there's only so much he can stretch the 'I just have good genes' excuse.

"Sif. Welcome." Fenris rises. "Come in, please. It's good to see you again."

He gestures to the table, and the food. "All is well in Asgard and with the Embassy I trust? We've some news, I'm afraid."

Is it possibly related to the way Astryd looks so tired?

Sif offers the sack of gifts — mostly the knives, but the mead is likely going to be an every time she visits thing — and settles at the table. "Well, there is something unusual happening of late, but I get the impression that your news is more crucial at this moment." She looks at Astryd, most definitely noticing how the Valkyr seems … diminished.

"Should I get some grey dye and put it through your hair, then?" Astryd teases Fenris as she accepts the gifts. Those are laid out on the table so everyone can see them. "These are exquisite, Lady Sif. They are midgardian crafted? They look nearly the equal of what I might have found in Asgard."

The food is soon served, by the Valkyr herself before she settles at the table with the other two. "Do you remember when we stood against Balor, Lady Sif and I took his light bolt when I was in Raven form?" The brunette shouldn't forget that - the blonde had stopped the bolt from killing Baldur or Hod after all.

"It laid a geas on me, one that … my Lord here, can't remove."

Fenris smiles at the gift and retrieves the mead out of it, putting the knives on the kitchen counter so that they can be put in their places. Well made, those will probably replace some of the knives already there. "Thank you Sif."

Once seated again Fenris pours drinks and passes them around. "As Astryd says, she has been marked and that mark is weakening her. We've done some investigation and it turns out that marks like this have been seen before, in many fabled incidents across many pantheons. Amaterasu hiding her face from the world? One of these marks. Eris tossing an apple that eventually destroys Troy? A mark like this. It's possible that some of this has even played a part in how the Aesir have… acted over the centuries." He can't be certain but it's a chilling possibility.

"We have discovered an avenue of investigation but… it's risky."

A geas? Of a sort that has caused havoc on Midgard repeatedly? This is truly bad news indeed. "Anything I may do to assist. You have my sword." No, she doesn't hesitate to offer her assistance, even before knowing exactly what it is they'll ask of her. They have both proven to be honorable warriors and committed to protecting Midgard and the humans that live here. That's enough for her.

"What is this risky avenue?"

"Thank you Lady Sif, though you might want to hear the quest before offering." Astryd murmurs, rather grateful that Fenris had taken the gift and put it aside.

"We spoke with Tsuku-Yomi, who told us how they eventually heal Amaterasu." There's a sadness to the usually stern blonde. "He said they compelled Mikaboshi to aid them. A God of the Underworlds. Fenris thinks we might do similar, though not with Mikaboshi of course."

He's quite mad.

Those cool grey eyes settle on Sif. "Do you remember Sedna, from when we fought in the street?" The Inuit goddess of the underworld that really, really didn't like Astryd.

"Mikaboshi is not a very pleasant being." Fenris says, making a face. "Then again, gods of darkness and death tend not to be. It's possible that a few of them may aid Astryd but the one I think most likely, Sedna, is a goddess of both death and secrets."

The Old Wolf takes a sip of his drink and lets that hang in the air for a moment.

"Unfortunately… she also kind of hates Astryd and that means going there might be a fight. And in her present condition…"

"You need a champion," Sif finishes for Fenris. I have yet to hear anything that would warrant a refusal." If this is as dangerous as the couple seem to think, perhaps she could persuade Steven to let her borrow his oversized shield. It'd likely be ungainly at first, but she's nothing if not adaptable.

"My sword is still yours."

Sif dropped Vambrace.

"What?" That takes Astryd by surprise and she spills the spoonful of vegetables she was serving across the table. "No. I … no. I couldn't do that to you." She shakes her head as she begins to clean up the mess she's made.

Her grey eyes meet Fenris', accusingly. He hadn't mentioned this part of the plan to her. He may need to … convince … his Raven to accept what's on offer.

"I'm not even sure Sedna would accept a challenge from anyone but me. Her hatred runs deep, perhaps with reason."

"We either need a champion or another sword and we're happy to have yours either way." Fenris looks back at Astryd with a look that says 'they'll talk'. He doesn't think Sedna would accept an outright duel request though that would considerably simplify matters. He IS however expecting a brawl when they step into her realm and he knows that Sif is good for a brawl. She ran one of Asgard's premier groups of brawlers after all.

"When we have something more like a plan we'll contact you, Sif. In the mean time, the news I've heard from the Embassy is unsettling. Something is amiss there I take it. Pray, tell us what it is?"

Despite Astryd's very apparent expression of surprise, Sif nods. "You have it, then, either as a champion or simply a companion on your quest." She helps clean up the spilled vegetables, then takes a mild swig of her beverage.

"It was brought to my attention recently that several of the Embassy staff have taken ill, and they seem to believe that the point of commonality with the people affected is a common ancestry. I … could find no valid reason to refute their claims. Especially as those affected have a fair chance of never recovering." She rugs her forehead with one hand. "I know almost nothing about the healing arts, and yet they have asked me to assist."

Astryd lets out a breath as Sif helps clean up the spill. "Another sword and companion will be appreciated." She can be gracious at least. It probably speaks volumes as to the effects of the geas she's under that she'd allow her surprise to be so obvious.

Fenris' look gets the slightest of nods. Anyone's guess how that might go.

"A common ancestry? All of them? Was it sorcery then that did this?" Astryd frowns at that news as she takes her seat again. "What is it they've asked you assist with?"

"A common ancestry as in 'they're all Asgardian?' Or was it more specific than that?" Astryd has asked the other important question so Fenris sits back and listens. Patient hunters need to be good at that and the Old Wolf has had centuries to practice.

Astryd, though, can see that his mind is already spinning. Anything that touches on Asgard immediately has him wondering 'what fates are active here and are they closing in again?'

"They all do seem to have a shared Aesir relation. And more than one of them bears a rather striking resemblance to, well, Fandral." Sif resists the urge to wrinkle her nose at that revelation.

"But, I have been asked to consult with the healers on Asgard to see if there is anything that can be done to help." It's honestly worrying her that she has to wait for the next time the Bifrost is scheduled to exchange people and goods in order to go back to Asgard. Though… could she perhaps relate the information to Heimdall? Would he consider it important enough to share? She's never entirely sure and thus hesitate to impose on the guardian.

"A common ancestor. That can't be good. Can they can test for the commonalities, Lady Sif? And who, may I ask, is they?"

The blonde frowns a little "From what I know of Midgard investigations, they might well be looking to you to smooth the way so they can speak with families and such. See what might have prompted such an attack, don't you think." Fenris thoughts are as clear to her as if he was speaking them.

"And now the Old Wolf is wondering who might be tinkering with Fate. Pulling threads in the patterns to nudge it back on course. Or to change it completely."

"You have to admit, attacking people's families is a very old world kind of move." Fenris points out. "Whatever the source of the attack it's possible it's being used by Those Who Sit Above…"

The Old Wolf shakes his head. "I'd offer to help and if you need it Sif, we will both be there. But I tend to bring instability and not stability to these kinds of things."

If it is a certain pointy bearded swordsman… who is upset with him? That's an excellent place to start. Has he had any bad romances lately?

No. Stop singing that song. Not that kind of bad romance.

"I believe that that is what the Midgardian healers hope to determine. And it is a group known as 'SHIELD', though I have yet to see any of them actually carrying shields."

She shakes her head a bit at the mention of attacking people's families. "This is another reason I wish to return to Asgard to ask about this. If someone is targeting Fandral personally, that is something that the AllFather might not allow to proceed unanswered." Which could be more bad than good for Manhattan.

"SHIELD." Astryd smiles at Sif. "They … it's an acronym, Lady Sif. The individiual letters of the word are the first letter of the real work. There's some debate as to the exact the name in this case however, it's something like Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division. Though there is one famous member who does carry a shield, I believe."

The benefits of living on Earth for all these centuries. "Do you remember when it was a new agency, Fenris?"

"I am not in a position to offer assistance either. I think the last you want is a sickly Valkyr sticking her wing in where it might upset things."

"It would be… inconvenient if the Allfather got particularly upset about this." Fenris says after wrinkling his nose. Inconvenient is the least of it. The last thing he wants is a diplomatic incident. That will inevitably draw attention here and might make his living situation uncomfortable. Or untenable.

"I do, yes. They called it something else, but these mortals do like changing names. They've come far. Or… they have by their standards."

He pauses. "I could… get you to Asgard." Fenris says slowly, looking at Astryd. The Ways can take him there. It's just, you know, risky. It's not like he'd have to stay though. The three of them could go if they had to.

It might be a slightly disturbing thought that Fenris could get there any time he wanted though.

"I appreciate that you are both willing to assist, but I cannot ask that of you, especially not that you risk what you have here by transporting me to Asgard." She considers the couple for a moment longer. "But I will most certainly keep you informed in case this odd illness spread beyond the one family connection."

She's quiet for a moment, as if contemplating something, and then she speaks up again. "Perhaps… you are more familiar with Midgardian medicine and science than I am. If I acquire information from the SHIELD people to share with the healers on Asgard, could you help me translate it to terms that the healers would readily comprehend?"

"The Old Wolf does not offer lightly, Lady Sif." Astryd returns Fenris' look. It does put them at risk. "Maybe it's worth it for a glimpse of the shining city once more. It has been two thousands years since …" Would she go? Quite likely. Who knows what trouble Fenris might find without her?

"Maybe the All Father should take an interest in something, my heart." It's been an ongoing discussion between the pair, just how 'hands off' Odin is.

"Translate the information, Lady Sif? I'm no medical professional but …" Fenris gets another look "… I'd be willing to try."

"I would ask nothing more than that you try," Sif acknowledges with a grateful smile. "And if you truly do wish to visit Asgard, I will not say no to accompanying you. And you will both be there as my guests." The 'not Odin's' is left unspoken but is still very clearly implied.

If nothing else, she can try asking Frigga to intercede. She's usually the more understanding of the two.

Astryd hasn't been 'Odins' for a while and recently, Fenris had earned her devotion. A trip to Asgard might indeed be thrilling.

"Then let us finish the meal. I have another Midgardian delight for dessert, Lady Sif. Peach Cobbler. Served with clotted cream. I'm sure you'll find it delightful."

It's night like these the blonde cherishes. Surrounded by friends with good food and drink.

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