|| Asymmetry | Role-Playing | What If | Over the Rainbow ||
"We are from Midgard and have come to reclaim the spoils that were gained from us in the raid that Asgard hath performed. We seek to gain our females back whether it be by force or tribute noble bridge guardian." Victor hopes that talking on the Viking's level will gain his ear. He sizes up the large man before him.
Emerald walks slowly towards the man, hands open. "I would seek an audience with Odin, to learn why Loki and others under him were allowed to leave your realm for ours and take mortals against their wishes. May I pass, Heimdall?"
As they speak, Aegis is quietly trying to be ready for anything, scanning the weirdly lit skies around them for any sign of additional threats. *So much for sneaking in.* If Dumas or Emerald can talk their way around this guardian, so much the better, but she's not going to count on it. *Let's hope they prefer an audience over force OR tribute.*
Captain America, not wishing to add any confusion to this already (as near as he can figure) tenuous standoff, remains silent. Doing his best to strike a noble stance under the rainbow, his eyes carefully watch Heimdall. Particularly, he watches for any sign that the bridge guardian may sound his horn again, this time in alarm rather than greeting. Cap is ready to do his best Big Billy Goat Gruff impression if need be.
Union floats to a slow halt, bringing himself abreast with Aegis, about fifty feet or so behind Dumas and Emerald (and consequently Delta V, held within Emerald's telekinetic field). He mutters under his breath, just loudly enough for the armored heroine to overhear, "There just had to be a bridge guardian, didn't there? Look who elected himself spokesperson..."
*On the other hand* Adrian thought *His sort of brash self assurance might go over really well with a warrior culture. And Emerald seems to know enough about these people to give him some capable backup.* He glanced over his shoulder to see the Captain hovering to his left, and he assumed Darkangel was gliding about to his right, the group unconsciously forming a phalanx to back up their point men if this turned into a fight.
*And if it comes to a fight, I'd best be ready to help out.* Union brings his magnetic systems to full readiness, feeling the metal around Heimdall's body through his sensors and being ready to grab the guardian's sword as soon as it gets put into play. *Don't actually touch anything, AdrianLord alone knows whether this Heimdall guy can sense that or notbut just be ready to throw off any attacks he makes so we can quickly subdue him.*
Heimdall stares hard at the assembled, hovering heroes, his face an impassive mask. Union's magnetic probe of Heimdall's sword and armor elicits no response, much to Union's relief. Then, Heimdall speaks:
"Listen with care, mortals. If thou hath the power to pierce the dimensional barrier betwixt Asgard and Midgard, then thou may hath the power to free thine captured women. But beware. The All-Father hath departed Asgard for some mysterious purpose known only to himself. Thor ruleth in Odin's stead, but he will not listen to thine entreaties. Thou shouldst continue across Bifrost to yon gatehouse. Thou shalt be unmolested. Asketh the gate guard for Ravdna. She be one of the few thou canst trust during these dark times. Go anon, brave mortals."
Victor floats around the bridge and not through it deciding against giving the Asgardians any knowledge they do not need to know.
"Thank y'kindly, pardner," Captain America gives an earnest smile and dips an imaginary hat brim to Heimdall as he passes, and soars to the far side of the bridge. He looks around for the gatehouse. Seeing it, hovers above it. "Looks okay!" he calls back to his companions. He touches down before the door of the gatehouse and calls inside, "Ravdna?"
Emerald turns his attention to Heimdall as he passes. "We thank you for the warning, great warrior. I fear Loki may be up to no good. We shall do what we can to rescue our own people."
Dumas sees Captain America fly out to the end of the bridge. The Doctor lands on top of the bridge, sure of a steady footing and then materializes and walks over the bridge enjoying this truly epic moment for mankind. The very thought of them traversing the bridge made his skin tingle. He hoped he wasn't asleep and dreaming.
*Well, that certainly went better than I'd feared...not very reassuring, but so far, so good.* Aegis follows the Captain's lead -- albeit a bit more seriously, with a grave nod to the guardian before following the brash young man across the bridge to the gatehouse.
She does not, however, relax her guard for an instant, her gaze constantly moving as she keeps track of the others and watches for anything that might belie the gracious welcome they have so far received. Victor sees Aegis. "Aegis, what is your opinion on whether this is a trap or not?"
She replies with a midair shrug, somewhat surprised by the question. "I don't know much about Vikings or their mythology, but from what we saw yesterday that doesn't seem to be their style. They don't have any *need* to trap us, frankly. That doesn't mean we should relax, though," she adds conscientiously, "especially not if there's some sort of internal conflict going on here that we might run afoul of. Heimdall didn't sound all that thrilled about their little raiding party. You know anything about Ravdna? I don't recognize the name." *You play nice and I'll play nice,* she thinks to herself, somewhat amused.
"Never heard the name before," Emerald tells the armored woman.
"As far as I can remember from my college days," Dumas spoke again "Ravdna was the Swedish/Finnish name for the wife of their god of thunder, Ukko. Who of course is also known as Thor in some texts. She has been called the goddess of the fertility, thunder, easing of pain and Midgard, or Earth, that also which ties her even closer to Thor. Others pointed towards her being one in the same as Sif. Apparently she was named by the Lapps for the rowan tree. The Lapps believed that the red berries of the rowan were sacred to Ravdna. The tree was also responsible for saving Thor when he was washed down a river or something similar. He pulled himself out by a branch of a rowan tree."
He walks on a for a moment. "Now only if we had some of those berries."
A voice from the shadows inside the gatehouse says "It is indeed not a trap. If Heimdall has allowed you passage than your cause must be just. Many changes have occurred in yon Asgard whilst the All-Father has been away but Heimdall's judgement will be pure even beyond Ragnorok."
"You seek to rescue the captured mortals? I, Ravdna the Valkryrie, will aid you" the voice continues to say as a 6 foot plus well muscled Asgardian woman steps forward. She is wearing red banded leather with occasional silver plate mail coverage. Her helmet is winged and silver as well. Long blonde braids are tossed across her back and adorning the helmet are pairs of Raven's feathers on both sides. She wields a large spear.
Dumas eyes the Amazonian woman with admiration. Now what would they want with our women if they have ones like this up here he asks himself within his own thoughts.
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© 1999 Mark L. Chance et al