2019-11-24 - You Can Beat People With It Too


Dinner to say thank you and … ask another favour

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Sun Nov 24 03:16:13 2019
Location: Tavern on the Green

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Theme Song



Betty Brant had contacted Astryd, advising she had something for the Asgardians. Lunch was decided. At the Tavern on the Park. A nice place where they could in peace.

Astryd is wearing a dress for a change, her long blonde hair hanging down her back. She's already at the table that's been booked and is drinking wine. Not like that is going to affect her any.

It was a wonder she had kept it in her safe-keeping for so long. It was a wonderous thing and the journey to get it was…trying. The message was sent and a location was decided. Making her way to the Tavern, Betty arrives with the parcel carefully wrapped in a bundle of fabric. Her own attire is fitting of the light nip in the air; jeans, boots and a sweater dress of deep navy. Her hair is partially braided, decorated with beadwork of runes and shapes. Upon seeing Astryd, she smiles adoringly.

Fenris is present, drinking whisky rather than wine. He smiles when Betty appears and waves her over. "Hello there Betty. Come have a seat. I have heard whispers through the grapevine that you had quite a time of it on your adventure. And that you came away successful." And alive. And not missing any metaphysical bits. All of these all good things, really.

"Come. Sit and take your ease. We have a gift for you. Ardul looked for a long time to dig it up."

Which she did. Ardul had wanted to properly thank Betty for helping them and Fenris had agreed that they should.

"Hello Betty." Astryd rises and gestures to the chair that Fenris indicates. "I do have a gift for you. I heard that your trip was not easy." The blonde waits till Betty takes a seat and draws a small package from her bag, sliding it across the table to the other woman.

It's elegantly wrapped in gold paper, tied with a silver bow. The paper has nordic like runes on it - probably decorative - but it speaks to the care that was taken. Inside, when Betty opens it, is a jewellers box the size of a necklace box - and inside that is a hair clip, similar to Astryds.

"Are you well, Little Sister?"

Betty Brant softens all the more when laying eyes on Fenris. She gives both a deep nod before stepping forward and claiming the seat offered to her. "A present? You shouldn't have, really. I just did as I promised to do." Looking at the bundle in her lap, she sets it on the table and sighs. "No, it wasn't easy. I'm still not sure what my mind is settling it as. I know that…if I can go the rest of my life without working with Hod again, I will." That was a lie, at least a little one with a sliver of truth to it.

Looking at the box, she smiles to the pair and then carefully peels away the bow and wrapping. Blinking, the velvet box pops open to show the clip. Closing it back again, she shifts enough to move from her seat and embraces Astryd.

"I'm well enough. Thank you."

Sif arrives a few moments after Betty, pausing a few steps away from the table as the gift is presented and opened so as to not get in the way. While waiting, she offers Fenris a respectful nod hello.

This tavern seems much more … affluent than the eateries she tends to frequent, and she's being extra careful not to bump into or even brush against any of the other tables around her. She's broken things before, and Midgardian tavernkeeps aren't always understanding.

"Ah Sif. Hello. Come, take your ease." Fenris says, gesturing to the open seat. They're supporting his weight so they'll probably support hers right?

The Old Wolf grins as the hair pin is revealed and he holds out a hand. "May I?" Once he has the pin the takes it out of the 'basket'. "Arcanum."

The pin glimmers and is instantly a rod, a sturdy three quarters of an inch around and two and a bit feet long. It's lined with nordic runes having to do with magic and focus.

"Mundis." Then it's a pin again.

"I understand you're learning magic. We thought this might help. Dwarf forged, from a long time ago." Beat. "Also you can hit things with it and it won't break. This was very important to Astryd."

The hug returned, Astryd squeezes Betty, the blonde sits and offers a bright smile to Sif as the other Asgardian approaches. "Sif! Have a drink!" Oh dear. That can bode well for the strait-laced Asgardian. "I have wine, which is nothing like our mead but it is quite nice."

"Hod can be a trial. Did he treat you well, Betty?" There's concern there "We really appreciate what you did for us. For the Asgardians. Is that the item you retrieved?"

As Fenris demonstrates the gift, the older blonde watches eagerly. "The runes are protective as well, if you believe in that sort of thing."

"Sif, you went with them, didn't you?"

And yes, having something to hit with is important.

"I did, yes," Sif replies as she claims the vacant seat at the table. No ominous creaking from the chair. That's a pleasant change. She seems intrigued by the wine, and will accept a glass knowing that Midgardian spirits are nowhere near potent enough to affect her in any detrimental manner.

"The quest was … not at all what I expected it to be." It was far less pleasant. She doesn't comment on Hod's treatment of either of them as it's not her place to say.

Betty Brant watches the item shift with his words. Her eyes widen all the more. Once back to something pin like and decorative, she reaches out and timidly reclaims it. Brushing the pads of her thumbs across it, she keeps her smile and flashes it toward Sif. Silent about the item, for now, she sweeps some of her hair and braids back and sets the ornament into place.

Sitting, she nods and rests a hand on the gem. "Yes, it is. I wasn't sure what to do with it and I…it never felt safe to touch. I wrapped it up and I hope it hasn't caused any trouble." Watching after Sif, she nods gently, a hint of pride and thanks in her gaze. "She was with us. I don't think we could have made it without her. I know I couldn't have."

Back to the pair, she swallows. "Hod was…Hod, I suppose. By the end of it all, I was just tired. He helped me not lose my mind and helped us get to where we needed to be. He helped save us and I cannot deny that. But…I know he lashes out for things he cannot change. He continues to allow his past to darken his present. Perhaps I shouldn't have snapped at him, but I couldn't take it anymore."

Betty's reaction to the gift gets a small, pleased, smile from Astryd. She doesn't offer to help set it in place - the other blonde has that well in hand. "It looks well on you, Betty."

Taking the package, the Valkyr cradles it in her palms for a moment before sliding it into her bag. "We will ensure this sent somewhere where it is difficult to find." She murmurs. "In and of itself, it is not bad but it can confer a lot of power on someone. Power which might be wielded poorly."

Handing a glass of sparkling white wine to Sif, Astryd pauses. "Hod has his challenges but I fear you are right. He will follow his path until he decides he doesn't have to. That, however, is not why we invited you. We did indeed primarily wish to thank you for your efforts."

Menu's are passed around for them to choose and order and from. "I'm afraid though, we have another request for your aid if you are willing to give it. Both of you."

"Apologies." Betty begins, and then nods gently. "And thank you. You don't have to thank me. I promised I would help you and I still do. Besides, you've helped me enough as well." Reaching up, she gently touches at the new pin before accepting her menu and glancing over it. At the request, her eyes roll upward and find the warrior's face.

"Of course I'm willing. What can I do for you?"

"It's been bought to our attention that at least two more artifacts of the Octessence are needed to complete the weapon against the Asgardians. The Crimson Gem was one but there are others." Astryd shakes her head and lets out a sigh. "We can find the location of both but for one, we need to recover an artifact that was stored long ago. The 'Feather of a Valkyrie', to be exact." That's what Sif was asked to find, wasn't it?

"Tell me, the two of you, what do you know of the Morrigan?" The Morrigan, a Celtic Death Goddess, yes? But perhaps she is more.

Betty Brant glances toward Sif and then back to Astryd. Another look about at the menu and the woman decides on her order for the evening. Setting it aside and reaching for a glass of water, she drinks calmly and considers in silence. "I can help find the others if you need me to." She offers. Then comes a name.

"Morrigan? Keeper of Avalon or…was that a mix up in story telling, too?"

"I'm not sure a mix up in story telling as much as muddled in the passage of time." Astryd answers quietly. "The Morrigan has many guises however to me, she's most familiar as the Death Goddess of the Celts. To Fenris, she's in the company of the Wolf Gods - a goddess who has taken the Wolf as one of her symbols, if you like."

There's a faint smile. "The reason I bring this up is two fold. The first is one the warriors in her keeping has a favour of mine." In the Morrigans keeping? That must mean he's a shade. "Eoghan is his name and I need that favour to find the location of one of the artifacts. I … would appreciate your help in retrieving it, which means seeking an audience with the Goddess herself."

"Fenris and I have discussed it and we feel that a representative of ours would be better received than the two of us. Someone … like a priestess."

Another drink of water down, Brant rests her sights on Astryd alone. Attentive and silent, she keeps to her drink and little else. She was making down names, items of importance. "Eoghan," she repeats, finishing off her glass. Blinking, the woman's expression turns sheepish. "I'd be honored. Point me in the right direction and tell me what I need to ask for, and I'll do so. I'll speak in your best favor."

"Did I not tell you, my heart, that Betty would aid us?" Astryd smiles. "You're assistance won't be forgotten, Little Sister. There are some things you will need to do to prepare though. Part of that is learning to use the rod we gifted you."

Astryd tops the glasses up as they sit there. The waiter arrives and takes their orders - a little timidly, Fenris does have an awfully strong … aura, after all - and then withdraws.

"I can show you how to open the path to the Morrigans Underworld Kingdom, but you will need magic to perform it yourself."

"It won't be easy, getting there but I doubt it will be as difficult as retrieving the Crystal Gem."

"Do you think you can work with Loki, to master the magic you will need to perform this?"

A subtle shift in her seat, she looks away only to place her order and murmur a kind 'thank you' to the staff. "Underworld, right…that doesn't sound intimidating at all." Low sarcasm doesn't carry well. Swallowing, she shifts once more and then nods.

"I didn't think it would be easy, but if it's lik what we did to claim the gem, that was honestly maddening. I'm still dealing with everything I saw."

"Loki? Yes, I can do that. He and his wife are teaching me magic. We've made baby steps, but steps none the less."

"You've walked the paths before for us, Betty and I wouldn't leave my Little Sister to go unguarded. Which is why I'm asking Sif to accompany you, if she will. Or assign Warriors that she trusts to walk the paths with you."

Astryd shakes her head and touches Betty's shoulder gently "The Underways are dangerous and foreboding, you are right to be worried. If you weren't, it meant we hadn't chosen wisely. You are courageous though, Betty and steadfast in your loyalty. You will succeed where many would fail, simply because of that."

"I doubt you will see anything near as bad as you saw on your path through the roots of Yggdrasil or as you entered Surturs realm. You will be tested by the shades that lurk in the shadows though - they will tempt you to join them. I have no doubt that they will fail."

With a glance to Fenris who seems to be lost in his own thoughts, Astryd smiles softly. "We may have one more thing that we will ask you to speak with the Morrigan of. When we know for certain, we will tell you."

No more is said on Loki, and yet Astryd and Fenris both knew Betty was learning magic from the Trickster.

"Before we put the 'business' part of the evening behind us, is there anything you wish to ask or speak of?"

Betty Brant glances to her shoulder and back to the warrior's face properly. Shaking her head, she gives a sad smile. "No, not really. I'm just letting it all settle, I suppose. How soon will you need me to go and will you provide me the magic I need to learn?" Apparently, she did have questions. "What should I take with me? Last time…I had my bag and was wearing flats. It…there was a lot of blood." And so there was.

With pause, she sits back and questions, "Is there a way for us to aid Hod?"

"No questions, hmmm? Not really?" Astryd teases a little and breaks open a bun to butter it. Clearly she's hungry and whilst food will be here soon, she's not prepared to wait. "Yes, of course I will. We will. We will tell you and Loki both, so you can learn and practice it."

At the mention of flats and blood, Astryd chuckles. "Come shopping with me. I will see you outfitted appropriately as a Priestess and a Little Sister to the Valkyrie." Combat boots, likely. But what else, Betty may wonder. "You'll need to go soon, but not before you're ready. We have a little time yet and I won't put you in danger if we can avoid it."

The mention of Hod gets a snort. "Hod has to want to help himself and not be so fatalistic about his Fate." Astryd leans against Fenris' shoulder as she says that. "Everything my Lord and I do to nudge Fate is to ensure that Hod, Baldur and Fenris as well as the others are not trapped on that Wheel again. How else do you think we may aid him, Betty?"

"Shopping? Um, sure, if you think that will help." That bun did look good. Reaching out, she snags one for herself and rips it into small pieces, popping one into her mouth. Good, she had time.

"I know and I feel the same way, too. He was…so amazed when I said I had converted, and not the good type of amazed, either. I understand, well, not completely, what he's gone through. But that happened and nothing will change those things." Sighing, she falls silent. "I've wanted to try talking to him again but the idea of seeing him makes me angry. Like that one friend who keeps taking their sorry ex back."

"Hod makes most of us mad…" Astryd smiles. Oh she'll take Betty shopping just not where the younger blonde might think. "You are right that nothing will change those things but even Fenris and I, hold our … grudges against those of Asgard."

Perhaps not as strongly as others, though. Or perhaps differently.

"Being exiled from ones home because of what one is Fated to do. Or being sentenced to be chained for life … It is not easy. Hod has suffered, been alone for most of his life. He is bitter though and that bitterness colours things."

"What would you say to Hod should you see him, Betty? I think you're analogy is not too far incorrect. Though I rather think there is a depth to Hod that will allow him to realise how much hurt he caused you and be sorry for it."

"I understand that. I'm not saying it's not warranted, either. To be judged on a possibility instead of a certainty. To suffer loss as he has, I can never feel that depth of pain, and I know that. It's not about matching suffering, but trying to understand it and help it settle. Share the burden."

More bread gone, she reaches for her napkin and cleans off her finger tips gently. "What would I say? I'm not sure. I'd want to slap him first, I think, but that wouldn't be what I should do. I'm not sure he'd honestly talk to me about anything. It…comes up a lot. Even in that realm it came down to some odd show of expressing his pain and guilt to a Giant. He hates his father, what he's been forced to live through, so why does he still give him power by suffering?"

"Slapping him might be amusing." Astryd smirks, pushing the basket of rolls closer to Betty. "It might make him shut up long enough for you to get a word edgewise. I'm not sure I'm really recommending that." The older blonde blinks though "He … confessed this to … Surtur?"

The cold grey eyes glitter. "Hmmm. Do you think that perhaps the old goat was putting on an act? Playing up things that without doubt do hurt but might not hurt as much as he made it seem?"

"If you wish to speak with him, I will go with you. He works at Lukes most days from what I can tell. If you don't, then I understand."

With a shake of her head, Astryd lets out a sigh. "Perhaps that's all Hod thinks he has, his suffering, so he clings to it."

They can see the waiters making their way to the table. Food is about to arrive.

"Hod has allowed prophesy to make his identity. Or defying it to make his identity." Fenris finally speaks up. "It's an easy trap to fall into. A prophesy is made. Do you embrace it or defy it. Few seem to understand that doing either gives it power. Even I am not entirely free from that trap. I spend a lot of time making sure I cannot be trapped into becoming what it was said I would one day be."

The Old Wolf takes a breath and lets it go. "Though Hod in particular has always been something of a… what's the phrase? Wet blanket."

"I couldn't tell you. At the time, it didn't matter. I know I was scared and in pain. I was worried, too, and that worry turned to anger. I had heard enough and told him to give it a rest. He yelled at me, in my face, I could feel the chill off his breath. So, I'm going to assume he wasn't acting up completely."

A couple more rolls down, she smiles. "No, no need to go with me. I've heard good things about Luke's, so maybe I'll visit sometime. For now I'm just going to leave him alone." A beat, "I have a feeling he only sees me as a pawn. Some stupid mortal getting mixed up in things I shouldn't bother with. I've never taken kindly to people telling me what I can or can't do with my life."

"Hod has some fondness for midgardians. He could hardly have otherwise. He's lived among them for so long, I think he'd have rather gone mad if he had not." The Old Wolf snorts at the thought. A mad Hod would be a bad thing indeed. Very, very bad.

"Ironically Hod hasn't taken well to that kind of thing either. His exile here has at least in part been one long quest for independence. Being free of the prohpesy. Other's expectation. Even I think his nature as an asgardian. Blind King of Winter and all that."

Fenris sighs and shakes his head. "Anyway. He means well. It's just that mostly he means well for himself."

Betty Brant looks to the food presented to them. Another smile and thanks given, she looks at the gathering and exhales smoothly. "We should eat and enjoy each other's company, I think. Tell me all I need to do for you and I shall." Utensils in hand, she beams. "Oh! I had Mead, too."

"When you are ready, Betty, your path will cross with Hod again. I am sorry if our request caused you pain, though." Astryd murmurs, leaning back so the food can be placed on the table.

"I will be in touch to get you outfitted appropriately. And will leave the rest in Loki's hands to begin with."

"Now, sit back and enjoy this repast, Little Sister and Sif. You both have earned it. And I'm afraid will earn again before we're through."

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