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Category: Writing and Poetry

my book - chapter one - part 2

it was too long for just one blog so i split it up into three parts (the other parts are in my blog)

part one    part two    part three

Bilskirnir was a heavenly place of light and beauty, where the powerful Thor and the radiant Sif lived together.” 

Sigyn was seven years old, curled up in her mother’s lap and attentively listening to the story. The bitter cold that worked its way through the floorboards of their small home was warded off by the blazing fire in the hearth. “When the thunder god was away, Sif spent her time tending to her hair and awaiting her husband’s return.”

“One day, the mischievous Loki spied Sif alone in her home. They created a snake, with a venomous bite deadly to mortals.” Sigyn’s mother raised her hands as though she was the snake, poised to strike Sigyn. Sigyn’s eyes widened. 

“But to an immortal goddess, the snake would inflict only sleep- heavy, dream-filled sleep.” Sigyn frowned.

“Why would Loki only put her to sleep?” Sigyn inquired.

“It was not Sif’s life that Loki was after,” Sigyn’s mother whispered conspiratorially, as though it were a secret she was sharing, “but rather her hair.”

“Loki sent the snake to Sif, and as the goddess slumbered on, they cut her hair.” At this, her mother tugged gently on Sigyn’s unbound curls. Sigyn giggled.

“Sif’s hair was made of pure gold, and certainly valuable to the god of tricks. They snuck away, leaving Sif bald and snoring.” Her mother paused, the corners of her mouth curving at Sigyn’s gleeful expression. 

“The next day,” she continued, “Loki’s act was discovered by none other than Thor himself, as he came home to his sleeping wife. The couple were, understandably, upset. They searched across the realms for Loki, but could not find them, for of course, the god was a master of hiding. 

“Finally, Thor and Sif turned to the All-Father himself. Odin, upon hearing the story, summoned Loki to face their punishment. 

“Thor demanded that each one of Loki’s godly bones be broken three times over for his deeds.”

Sigyn drew back and opened her mouth to interrupt, but her mother pressed a finger to her lips and carried on with the tale.

“Loki pleaded with Odin, and the wise All-Father proposed a compromise. Loki was to pay the cost of Sif’s hair thricefold, and all would be forgiven. Sif and Thor grudgingly accepted, and Loki was left to fulfill their debt.”

“Loki traveled deep underground to Svartalfheim, for where else could one go to find gifts suitable for a goddess? 

“Upon arriving, the god met with two of the most skilled dwarves; Brokkr and Sindri. Brokkr and Sindri were brothers, with unrivaled talent in metalcraft. The brothers forged three pieces for Loki. Gungnir, a spear so deadly a single sweep was all that was needed to slay an entire army. Skidbladnir, a boat that could withstand even the harshest storms. And finally, a full head of woven golden hair as a replacement for the locks Loki had stolen.

“When it came time to pay the dwarf brothers, Loki emptied their pockets only to find Sif’s original glowing tresses. They offered to pay the brothers with this, but it was not enough to cover the full cost.”

“Loki should have magicked something to pay with,” Sigyn said. “If they could create a snake, surely they could find a few crowns!” Her mother nodded thoughtfully.

“Even the gods themselves have limits,” she said. 

“Maybe they used all their power on the snake.”

“Perhaps. Nonetheless, Loki could not afford the dwarves’ work. The god knew better than to let them know. Instead, they criticized the items- saying that their value was far less than the hair.

“This shocked the dwarves greatly, but they had not yet heard of Loki’s tricks and cunning. Believing the god’s words, they decided to show the god one more item; Mjolnir. Mjolnir was a great and mighty hammer, fit for a great and mighty god.

“Upon seeing the hammer, Loki agreed to the trade. They took Gungnir, Skidbladnir, the golden hair, and Mjolnir. In return, they gave the brothers Sif’s hair.

“When Sindri and Brokkr grasped the hair, however, it fell through their fingers as plain straw.  Loki had placed a spell on ordinary hay. The brothers became enraged, but as they turned to make their demands to Loki, they discovered the god was long gone, having already raced back to Asgard to meet Odin for the trade. 

“Loki presented Odin with the spear, the boat, and the golden hair. The hammer they withheld- for the trickster god had coveted it for themself. Odin examined the items, and declaring it a worthy price, called for Thor to collect them. 

“The noble Thor gifted the spear to Odin and the boat to Frey, keeping only the hair for his wife. All was well between the gods, when the brothers Brokkr and Sindri arrived on Asgard’s door. 

“They accused Loki of theft, and insisted that their justice be given in the form of Loki’s head. Loki, under watch of the All-Father, agreed. The dwarves brought their sharpest axe for the occasion, and all the gods of Asgard gathered to watch the spectacle.”

Sigyn, who had been falling asleep, shifted in her mother’s lap with newfound interest.

“Just as Brokkr placed the blade above Loki’s nape, the god called out- 


‘It was only my head I gifted to you, not my neck!’

“All heads turned to Odin, who sat deliberating the weight of Loki’s words. 

‘The god of lies speaks true,’ he announced.

“The dwarves’ fury could not be placated even by the All-Father. They bound Loki in chains before the crowd, ensnaring them so they could not change their shape to flee. 

“The hammer Loki had hidden away was discovered, and given to Thor. It was used to guard Midgard from the giants forever, until the battle of Ragnarok.

“The brothers advanced on Loki. A needle and thread were produced, and the brothers-”

Sigyn’s mother coughed and looked down.

“What happened next?” Sigyn questioned. 

“Are you sure you want to know?” her mother said in reply. Sigyn nodded eagerly.

“The dwarves took their needle, and sewed Loki’s mouth shut, so that their silver tongue could speak no more.”

Sigyn wrinkled her nose.

“All because of Sif’s hair?”

“All because of her hair.” 

“Sif deserved it.” Her mother laughed.

“Loki was freed eventually, but that is for another night.”

Her mother gathered Sigyn in her arms and declared it was time to sleep. She pulled the hand-sewn quilt tight around Sigyn’s small body.

Sigyn watched the fire with tired eyes as it burned down to glowing embers, casting strange shadows around the room.

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