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Halfdan Ragnarsson

Hvitserk is one of the sons of Ragnar Lothbrok

0 · 155 views · located in Iskjerne Bay

a character in “The Multiverse”, as played by Ivar the Boneless

Description

Halfdan "Hvitserk" Ragnarsson is the son of Ragnar Lothbrok and Queen Aslaug, and the brother of Ivar the Boneless. Hvitserk is a nickname meaning White Shirt, but its unknown why. Queen Aslaug was a powerful seeress, and warned Ragnar that they should wait to sleep together until they were married, otherwise their sons would have the curse of the dragon. Ragnar had ignored the prophecy however, and so their illegitimate children were all born with abnormalities. Hvitserk was born with an addiction to medicine, which gives him hallucinations on occasion. With a snake in his vision, he sometimes mistakes someone or something for someone else or something else.

So begins...

Halfdan Ragnarsson's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ivar the Boneless Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Fulgar Thornheim Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Thorvald the Great Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black
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As they moved through the gates, Livia continued to closely observe the defenses, and how the city was set up. She made a mental note of the positions of every man in the city, their weapons and equipment, and their general demeanor.

"We'll start digging tomorrow at first light." Livia commented, as she moved into the great mead hall, her eyes on the Decanus behind her.

Livia turned her attention to Lagertha, and offered a nod, before she turned to her Decanus. "Have the men unload the cart, stage the tools at the dig site, and bring in a sled to carry the body out. See to it the mule is kept warm at a stable or something, I don't want it to freeze to death out here in the cold."

The Decanus nodded, and turned back to relay the orders to his men, They would find a place, or be shown a place to store the mule cart, before they began to unload the tools to bring inside.

Once inside the mead hall, Livia smiled at the warmth, and she nodded to one of the Legionaries that came inside with her. She held her arms out to her side, and the Legionary began to undo the fasteners that secured her Paenula, pulling the plush, velvety red cloak off of the Legata, revealing her Lorica armor, which shimmered in the orange flame. The Lorica armor was worn over a heavy red, and white tunica, which extended down to the mid thigh, protected by armored strips of leather. Livia also had her sword, which was encased in a silver, gold imbued scabbard that bore ornate geometric designs. There was another strange weapon holstered on Livia's back. It was a flintlock pistol, with an engraved wooden handle with poured gold inlaid designs.

There was a dagger sheathed in Livia's left boot, and a second weapon holstered in her right boot. This weapon was even stranger in appearance from the weapon holstered at her back. Sheathed in a black kydex holster, the Seburo BoBson Centennial edition semi-automatic pistol was secured snugly in her boot.

The Legionary took her Paenula cloak, and began to delicately fold it up, as Livia took a step forward. She was somewhat lithe in build, but years of combat gave her a toned appearance that was evidenced in the muscles of her arms, and legs.

She dared not take a seat, or do anything else that might offend those before her. So she inclined her head.

"Such a magnificent hall, and warm too. Thank you for your hospitality." Livia said. "If it's not too much trouble, is there somewhere I can have my legionaries draw me a warm bath? I'm not used to the cold, here."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ivar the Boneless Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Fulgar Thornheim Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Thorvald the Great Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black
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Iskjerne Bay, year unknown...
Inside the Ring Fort, just outside the Mead Hall...


As the troops continued to march through the gates, Lagertha's shield-maidens kept a sharp eye on Livia the Legata and her small band of Praetorians, stopping at the foot of the bridge as the Argosians made their way up the large suspended ramp to the innermost stone wall. Livia would look around, observing the positions of every man in the city, as the guards near the wooden palisade stared back at her silently, taking a mental note of Livia and her legionaries as well. The berserkers at the head of the suspension bridge would part ways and make a path for Lagertha and her guests as they started to make their way through the spiked metal gate.

"Who are they? And why does that one there keep looking over here?" one of the workers asked the guards beside him as he shoveled snow and dirt away from the place where Ivar's Keep was being built. "I have no idea who they are, friends of Queen Lagertha I assume," the guard answered. "She looks oftly interested in our defenses," another guard commented. "What should we do?" another one of the shirtless workers asked, his hands and face dirty from digging trenches all day. "I'll take care of it. Just keep your teeth together and go back to work," the guard said, before walking casually back to the Mead Hall.

"We'll start digging tomorrow at first light." Livia commented, as she moved into the great mead hall, her eyes on the Decanus behind her. Livia turned her attention to Lagertha, and offered a nod, before she turned to her Decanus. "Have the men unload the cart, stage the tools at the dig site, and bring in a sled to carry the body out. See to it the mule is kept warm at a stable or something, I don't want it to freeze to death out here in the cold." Livia's words did not fall on deaf ears. "I will have one of my maid-servants show you the way," Lagertha said, nodding to one of the young slave girls who was standing nearby. The Decanus nodded, and turned back to relay the orders to his men. The young girl would show them to the stables, pointing to a place inside where they could store their mule cart, before the Argosians began to unload the tools to bring them inside. The young girl just stood there quietly by the doorway, watching them with curiosity and a hint of fear or shyness. She couldn't be more than 12-years-old, with blue eyes, blonde hair and a dirty face.

As the legata and her crew stepped out of the freezing cold and into Iskjerne's large Mead Hall, the berserkers closed the spiked metal gate at the stone wall behind them, stopping all traffic to and from the suspension bridge. A small band of hornuglars would guard the foot of the bridge below the scarp, while the small band of berserkers would take up positions outside the Mead Hall, guarding the spiked metal gate. All the while, Queen Aslaug was still standing on the earth mound outside the ring fortress, gazing into the distance with a blank expression, never moving an inch as the kattrfylking sitting on the ground below her continued to spin their threads and weave spindles of yarn to be used in the future.


Iskjerne Bay, moments later...
Just as a single guard was leaving the Mead Hall...


"Listen here little brother, you were chosen by runes to be the commander of this expedition, but I am still older than you. Don't forget that" Bjorn Ironside said calmly, looking down at Prince Ivar who was smiling patiently. "Is that why our father left you in Kattegat, and took me raiding with him instead?" Ivar the Boneless grinned, still gripping the knife he had concealed under the table. Bjorn Ironside leaned forward, suddenly slamming his fist down on the table, and was about to grab Prince Ivar by his neck when suddenly the Mead Hall doors opened up and Queen Lagertha stepped in, accompanied by Livia and her most personal guards. Bjorn stared sternly at Ivar for a brief moment before regaining his composure. Ivar smirked quietly, putting his knife away before anyone could see it. Bjorn would crink his neck and shoulders, relaxing his nerves and loosening up before turning around to greet his mother and their guests, all of whom oblivious to the tensions between the two legendary viking brothers. Ivar just kept smiling, his eyes trailing over to the legata as his very tall and very large brother breathed deeply and turned to greet everyone while being calm and maintaining his resolve.

"Well? Welcome to our mead hall" Bjorn said impatiently, raising his hands at his sides with his palms open before taking a seat next to Ivar. Lagertha smiled softly and walked over to to her son, placing her hand gently on his shoulder before taking her place on the queen's throne beside Prince Ivar, looking at her guests.

Once inside the mead hall, Livia smiled at the warmth, and she nodded to one of the legionaries that came inside with her. She held her arms out to her side, and the legionary began to undo the fasteners that secured her red cloak, revealing her lorica, which was worn over a red and white tunic, protected by armored strips of leather. Livia also had her sword, which was encased in a silver, gold imbued scabbard that bore ornate geometrical designs. There was another strange weapon holstered on her back. It was a flintlock pistol, with an engraved wooden handle with poured gold inlaid designs. There was a dagger sheathed in Livia's left boot, and a second weapon holstered in her right boot. This weapon was even stranger in appearance from the weapon holstered at her back. Sheathed in a black kydex holster, the Seburo BoBson Centennial edition semi-automatic pistol was secured snugly in her boot as she stepped forward. She dared not take a seat, or do anything else that might offend those before her. So she just inclined her head instead.

"Such a magnificent hall, and warm too. Thank you for your hospitality." Livia said. Ivar the Boneless just kept smiling quietly, glancing over to Bjorn Ironside, who kept his composure and his thoughts to himself. "Please, come on in, take a seat" Prince Ivar said, motioning for everyone to gather around the long heavy wooden table carved from a single tree. "If it's not too much trouble, is there somewhere I can have my legionaries draw me a warm bath? I'm not used to the cold, here." Livia added. Bjorn just gritted his teeth. "Why of course," Queen Lagertha assured her with a smile. "What? Do they not know what tomorrow is?" Bjorn Ironside asked his mother. Queen Lagertha scorned him silently with her eyes before smiling again to Livia and her guards. "It will be Bath Day very shortly. By the time we're done eating, your bath will be ready. In the meantime, sit down and warm yourself by the fire. Eat. Drink. Enjoy." the viking prince Ivar the Boneless insisted as his slaves suddenly started walking in with plates and dishes, food and mead horns already filled and ready to be served.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ivar the Boneless Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Fulgar Thornheim Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Thorvald the Great Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black
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Nobody at Iskjerne Bay was aware of it yet, but Sigurd Hring was watching. His spirit moved across the waters, over the mounds and hills, the prayers of his descendants being heard from down beneath the earth. Sigurd Hring had become One with Gaia, and now looked down upon Iskjerne Bay as a titan and a god. The Spirit of Sigurd swept over the Weargtooth Mountains, a cold swift breeze sweeping through the viking settlement. All non-magical, non-medieval technology was instantly disabled without any sign, indication or warning, and would be permanently disabled at Iskjerne Bay forever, or until the gods decided to change their minds.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ivar the Boneless Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Fulgar Thornheim Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Thorvald the Great Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black
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Livia slowly lowered herself at the table with the other Vikings, her Decanus taking a position directly behind her. But something else was on the Legata's mind as she surveyed the demeanor of the inhabitants.

She looked to the food that was set out before her. Was it poisoned? Livia regarded the plates before her with narrowed eyes, before she reached for a piece of fowl, pulling some of the meat off of the bone, she passed it back to her Decanus, who took the meat from her hands, and placed it in his mouth, chewing on it thoughtfully.

He leaned forward, and whispered something in her ear, and at that moment, Livia took the food, and began to pile it onto her plate. Her trek across the vast gulf of space, and her journey here from the gateway left her, and her men famished, having subsisted on MRE's given to them by the Taiyou Military, along with their own pickled fish paste, and hard tack bread.

After finishing her portion of savory meat, Livia once again gestured for her Decanus' ear, where she quietly whispered.

"I do not trust these savages, send a messenger to Argos with all haste, deliver this to Admiral Lanius." She whispered in the Decanus' ear, while passing him a small rolled piece of paper from a leather pouch on her tunica. The small message indicated the current time, and date, and instructed Admiral Lanius to begin his operation if Livia did not contact the Taiyou in four days.

The Decanus slid the rolled piece of paper into his own armored leather pouch on his belt, and secured it to deliver to the messenger. He quietly remained at Livia's side as she politely ate her meal. She was civilized, and her mannerisms showed it. Her eyes seemed to watch the room though. Quietly, the Decanus passed the note to one of the Indigo robed Praetorians, who turned to leave the mead hall.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ivar the Boneless Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Fulgar Thornheim Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Thorvald the Great Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black
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As the Legata narrowed her eyes at the food in front of her, Ivar the Boneless just smiled quietly. Lagertha patiently waited for the wine servants to finish pouring mead for everyone before picking up her own drinking horn and smiling to Livia, and her praetorians. Bjorn wasn't even paying any attention to any of them. Bjorn Ironside was hungry, as he leaned over everybody in the path between him and the potatoes. The other vikings at the table didn't seem to mind, however, or mind their own manners much either, but Bjorn stood out among them, perhaps because he was just bigger than most of the other people in the mead hall. He had a better reach, his large skull-crushing hands equal to his pig-eating appetite as he ambidextrously reached for the red apple in the pork's mouth and plucked it out with his other hand, biting into the apple with his own teeth. Ivar the Boneless just grinned.

As the vikings in the mead hall started loading their plates with food, never bothering to wait for their guests, Lagertha suddenly raised her drinking horn, and her voice so that everyone could hear her inside the hall. "I want to give a toast," she said loudly, causing a majority of the vikings to simmer down and raise their drinking vessels as well. But as they did, Livia would notice that all of the viking's many different dishes and silverwear were highly unusual and very stylistic, as if each plate and bowl had come from a different market rather than all from the same set. These were not primitive savages like the many smaller tribes and clans that had proceeded them. Ivar's Army was a highly culturalized, highly civilized force. Prince Ivar had brought actual expert Vikings on his voyage, men who were vikings by profession, not just by title or stereotype. These were people who made a living by raiding other people. Every silver spoon, cast iron pan, golden chalice, bronze plate, tin cup, and steel knife was very diverse in shape and design, some more expensive and valuable than others.

Nobody at the feast even noticed that Livia's decanus had handed a small scroll to one of the praetorians. They were all too focused on the mead and festivities, as Lagertha called for a toast. Prince Ivar tapped a metal spoon against his crystal goblet lightly a few times, helping Lagertha to get everyone's attention at the large wooden table that had been carved from a single giant tree, before picking up his own glass of wine. "To Frigg the All-Mother, may she bless this feast... And to our guests, may she bring us all much peace and prosperity while you are here." Lagertha smiled, raising her drinking horn into the air. "SKAL!!" Bjorn Ironside bellowed, quickly chugging his large metal tankard of ale with foam running down his beard. "Skal!" others soon echoed over one another as they took a swig of whatever was poured. "Skal," Lagertha said, calmly and more quietly as she smiled to Livia and her crew, raising her drinking horn again while nodding to Livia with respect.

Livia's praetorian messenger in the night blue robes would leave the mead hall discreetly and quietly. It wasn't even so much that the vikings at the table didn't notice him leave. They just didn't seem to care. They were all more lost in the moment, focusing on the red wine, the golden mead, the amber ale, the freshly cooked ham and cow steak with steaming hot carrots, onions and sliced potatoes. All except for Ivar the Boneless, he was still grinning silently, twirling his spoon on the table while looking at Livia, staring at her quietly from the king's throne. As the praetorian messenger left the mead hall and walked outside into the chilly snow, he would notice that the spiked gate attached to the stone wall was now locked and closed, and there were large bear-skinned berserkers blocking all traffic to and from the suspension bridge, for reasons unknown. These were tall, built warriors with painted faces and bodies, carrying large heavy weapons, full fledged bear-hides flung over their heads, backs and shoulders, keeping them nice and warm as they stared at the indigo robed messenger quietly, waiting to see if he would approach the wall.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ivar the Boneless Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Fulgar Thornheim Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Thorvald the Great Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black
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The moment the Praetorian slipped out of the mead hall, while everyone seemed to be focused on their own revelry, Livia reached into her velvet red tunica, and slid it into a small cloth pocket that was fastened securely under her lorica armor. She grasped her slender fingers around something, and slowly she pulled it out. She held it up, and the other Vikings would see a unique piece of brass jewelry, almost like a pendant with a small silver chain that was fastened securely to the woman's steel armor strap, affixed to a small metal loop that was riveted into the armor segment.

Curiously, with her thumb, she flipped the pendant open, to reveal a white facing with numbers all around it, and small pointers that seemed to point towards different numbers. She put her thumb, and index finger around a small knob near the top chain, and began to twist, the strange piece making a winding sound with each twist of her fingers. Once she finished, the strange pendant made a soft, rhythmic, but rapid ticking sound, that was drowned out by the revelry of the mead hall.

She felt eyes on her, but she didn't react right away, rather she turned her attention over to Lagertha, and raised her own glass. She called out the word. "Bibe!" As she raised her own, taking a drink of the liquid inside. Livia returned her own respectful nod to Lagertha, the timepiece still held snugly in her hand, as her eyes moved back to the face of the timepiece that had been softly ticking away, mechanical gears powered by a tightly wound mainspring, it was fine Taiyou craftsmanship, a gift from Prime Minister Kayabuki during one of the many peace summits that Livia had attended in the past.

She stared at the brass timepiece, before she flipped the cover closed over the face, sliding it back into it's pouch as her steely eyes rose up to meet Ivar's.

Livia's own eyes narrowed suspiciously as she seemed to engage in a staring contest with Ivar, who would flinch first? Livia had multiple contingencies, which were upon contingencies, and contingencies. Twenty four hours was what she had given General Hama back at the gate, if she didn't contact him in twenty four hours, he was going to send a rescue party, and Livia knew that would further inflame an already tense situation. She had left an entire Evocati cohort back on Niihama, armed with some of the best equipment that Argosian denarii could buy.

---

Outside in the chilly air, the lone Praetorian rubbed his hands, trying to garner some warmth in the frigid bay. He took a quick survey of his surroundings, they had the gate shut, and the doors locked with bearskin warriors guarding it. The Praetorian guardsman grimaced, and then quietly shook his head. He opted to make no further disruption, and return to the mead hall.

He opened the door just wide enough to let himself in, and if unobstructed, would return to Livia's side, leaning forward to whisper quietly in her ear.

Livia didn't seem to react, rather she took a piece of venison from a nearby plate, before dismissing the Praetorian back to his post.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ivar the Boneless Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Fulgar Thornheim Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Thorvald the Great Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black
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Sigurd Hring was dead.

He had been dead for two generations, yet his legacy had lived on long after he was gone. Sigurd had become One with Gaia, and had transcended the physical realm. He was more than just a man. To the native inhabitants, he was now a Titan, and to his viking descendants in Iskjerne Bay, he was now a god. He was the founder and first patriarch of the greatest viking settlement in the universe, the seed from which all the rest had blossomed. All he ever wanted was to live in peace, to create a free society, and help to cultivate the land which loved him so dearly. He had fought tooth and nail to establish a sanctuary where people would be treated equally, where they would have the freedom of religion, the freedom to change their social status and role in society, where they would have the opportunity to make a difference, rather than being slaves.

Sigurd Hring had a dream, and he had spent his entire life fighting for it, all the way up to the time of his death. Sigurd's son had a similar dream, a similar goal in mind. Ragnar was captured, or rather, had willingly turned himself in, for reasons unknown. Ragnar was not spared from torture and torment. He had been bound and chained, humiliated, prodded with spears and whips, his flesh burned and marked, his face disfigured, his body disgarded into a chamber of serpents, so that Ragnar's own sons could hardly recognize him. Oh how the little piggies would squeel when they heard how the old boar had suffered. Never before in history would Vikings be so wrathful and eager for revenge. Ragnar Lothbrok was a legend, and he still is to this very day, just like his father and their fathers before them.

But even Ragnar was not as great as his predecessor King Sigurd, the Ringtaker, the man who married Ragnar's mother. Sigurd Hring, slayer of dragons, giants and dwarfs alike, successor to his own uncle Harald Wartooth, whom he had battled honorably and killed at King Harald's own request. King Sigurd was a legend from the very beginning, a legend which grew over time as he defeated one rival after another, facing monsters and demons, and gods greater than himself, never once surrendering or bowing a knee.

Who wants to be King?

Sigurd Hring was sick of fighting. He wanted only to retire peacefully, to create a marvel for all the worlds to see. He was not so much interested in fame, as he was in glory. Sigurd did not care about riches, wealth, or great expansion. He had no intentions of building an empire, or creating a magnificent army. Sigurd was more interested in the black earth, and fertile soil. He planted a farm, and built a fortified ring around his kingdom where Vikings and pagans could coexist together and find sanctuary. Iskjerne Bay was to be a remote safe haven, far away from all the wars, violence, torture, rape, death and crucifixions that Sigurd Hring and his family had experienced for centuries. His intentions were great, and his dreams were greater, but his timing was off and his fate was fixed. It was only a matter of time before this undefeated rebel met his inevitable doom.

Emperor Shimizu of the Taiyou Empire was not a friend of the Norse kings. Sigurd Hring had a run-in with the Taiyou, and what started as a peaceful encounter soon was wrought with confusion and misunderstanding which escalated into violent warfare between them. The Taiyou Empire, and their fear-driven galactic technology. The greatest civilization that ever lived, heh. Sigurd Hring would put their reputation to the test. Never before in the history of the cosmos had a rebellion been so adamant and strong willed. Never before would such a tiny primitive civilization make such a dramatic impact. Sigurd's army not only fought the Taiyou back, off of their own land, but had dared to attack the Taiyou on their own soil, with enough success that King Sigurd would warrant a visit from the Taiyou Emperor himself.

It wasn't enough. King Sigurd slaughtered the Emperor's army, killed one his advising mages, and sent the emperor crawling home with broken legs and injuries. It was a defeat the Taiyou Empire simply could not allow to go public. They amassed a great space army, and would be hell-bent on taking revenge. Sigurd's actions had endangered the entire planet of Gaia, and his fate was now fixed. It was only a matter of time before the Taiyou returned to make his life miserable.

Sigurd Hring looked around at the kingdom he had established. Women, children, vary a man between 15 and 50, good paganfolk who were not deserving of such ill-fated tyranny. His heart grieved with great sorrow, for he knew the future, and the horrible things that would happen to his people once their enemies had returned. He wept silently by himself, before re-gathering his composure and going out to face his kingdom. King Sigurd was a just and honest man. He told the Vikings what had happened, and what would happen as a result. But the people did not hate him for it. They praised him, erecting a magical permanent statue of King Sigurd from enchanted stone, and worshipping him as a living god. He promised them, that whoever came to him and called on his name, and followed him in death, would be with him in paradise.

The entire viking settlement had committed suicide, following Sigurd Hring in death, and sparing themselves from capture or torture in the hands of their enemies. Adding insult to injury, the Taiyou ships had wasted their journey. The Taiyou Empire was robbed of its chance at revenge, as King Sigurd and his loyal subjects took their own lives, leaving nothing but their memories. It was the ultimate act of defiance, an act of selflessness that would inspire rebels for generations to come.

Many years later, Ivar the Boneless, the son of King Ragnar and grandson of King Sigurd would arrive in Iskjerne Bay, influenced by Norse mythology and Taiyou propaganda, and driven by the spirits of his own ancestors. Sigurd Hring's ghost would come to Prince Ivar in his dreams, giving him spiritual advice and guidance, and instructions on how to rebuild the kingdom. But the young man was too bold and arrogant. He had inherited the same thick headedness as his father and grandfather. Ivar had not followed Sigurd's instructions, but had set his heart towards greed and selfishness. He had formed the Great Heathen Army and had plunged the Norse civilization into endless warfare, perverting everything that his grandfather King Sigurd had held sacred for decades.

That was a mistake...

Suddenly the ground in Iskjerne Bay would shake and tremble as bodies tossed and turned in their graves. Everyone in the great Hall, Viking and Argosian alike, would feel the earth tremble beneath their feet. At that moment, an invisible force seemed to unseat the crippled prince as he was suddenly thrown from the throne, with such force that if he did not catch himself, his bones would surely shatter. Meanwhile, the material wooden statue of Prince Ivar would be uprooted and split in half vertically, so that one half remained standing while the other half fell to the ground. Queen Aslaug would feel the mound below her start to tremble as well. The moment she had been waiting for had arrived.

Sigurd Hring had returned.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Fulgar Thornheim Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Thorvald the Great Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson
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#, as written by Remæus
Thorvald the Great sensed the drum of the aeon, and perked up at the noise.

Man the sails, Fulgar. The horsemen ride at down.
he said solemnly, signaling his next intent.

The heave of oars was heard over the shouting disarray of the crowds, and he turned back towards his ships in a furor. The purpose of his step revealed an aggressive demeanor, almost hungry for war.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Fulgar Thornheim Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Thorvald the Great Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson
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The sudden trembling within the Mead Hall caught the Legata by suprise, getting quickly to her feet, she stopped with just enough time to see Ivar thrown from his throne. There was an overwhelming sense of danger as the Legata turned to her Praetorian. "Let's go, we need to get the bodies, and get out of here." She ordered, as the Praetorian guards all nodded in unison.

Livia, and every one of the Praetorian Guards inside the great mead hall stood up, and one by one moved out the great door, the First Praetorian opened the door for her, while the rest of her Praetorian Guards followed her out. The cold air of Iskjerne Bay greeted them once more, Livia tried to stifle a shiver, but they were going to take their leave of this place. If these new settlers wanted to take them prisoner, then she would make them earn it.

Livia unsheathed her sword and pointed it at the gate, shouting so the magical translator would convert her words. "Open the gate, now! We're leaving." She ordered, while all of her Praetorian Guardsmen surrounded her, and watched their surroundings to see what would happen next.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Fulgar Thornheim Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson
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#, as written by Remæus
Fulgar Thornheim nodded in agreement with Thorvald, his second-in-command apt as always. Turning towards the docks, he signaled to his men that it was time again to depart.

Gather what supplies you can, we depart in one hour.
he stated sternly, pulling his fur cloak over his armor and stomping back towards his ship.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Fulgar's Forward Force Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson
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#, as written by Remæus
Fulgar's Forward Force heard their leader's command, and roared in raucous reply. They spread out into the settlement, commandeering the food stores and any armaments they could find. While not an act of aggression, the noble cause of their unified vision for the Vikings' future gave way to easy requisition of Iskjerne's most abundant resources.

Upon collecting their bounty, they too followed Fulgar back to their vessels for departure onto the next leg of their journey.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson Character Portrait: Erik Thorvaldsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Sigurdsson
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The burial mound beneath Queen Aslaug would tremble and move, like a pregnant mother with groaning pains as suddenly, the dirt and grass began to shift. Soon, fingers emerged from beneath the soil. But these were not skeletal fingers, nor the blueish pale rotten appendages of a Draugr, rather they were of pinkish lively hue and covered with living flesh and nails.

Moments later, a whole arm would emerge from beneath the dark black rich fertile soil, and soon an entire man would dig his way out from the earth, his head and torso emerging to reveal a living human being, as if Gaia herself had just given birth.

The man would immediately gasp for air as he coughed up a mouth full of dirt, inhaling and exhaling as if it was his first time breathing fresh air. Soon he pulled his whole body out from beneath the fertile mound and rolled over on to his back, breathing heavily, exhausted and without any energy. He was a Norseman with dirty hair and mud stained clothes. His face, his shirt, his entire body was covered with brown mud and black dirt. He wore shaggy trousers, completely devoid of any shoes or armour. His feet and nails were dirty, and to everyone else nearby who could witness this spectacle, he looked like one of the goblins or uruk-hai who had been fashioned from earth.

But this was no orc or goblin, as soon they would see, for as he opened his eyelids to stare up at the skies, his eyes were bright blue and full of life. The man who had just crawled out from underground was a human, and not just any human. It was the long lost son of Sigurd Hring, who had been presumed dead for a very long time. The now very weak, very vulnerable man who was sprawled out on the ground in Iskjerne Bay was none other than Ragnar Lothbrok, the Ghost of England, a legendary Viking from whom many a Norseman, both in Iskjerne Bay and surrounding counties were all descended and had written many poems about.

It was as if Sigurd the Ringtaker himself had returned. But this was not King Sigurd, nor was he a god with divine powers. This was a man of flesh and blood, a mortal being in dire need of food, drink, and medical conditioning.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson Character Portrait: Erik Thorvaldsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Sigurdsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Sigurdsson
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Livia had assembled her guards to leave, and were well on the way to doing so until they passed a mule cart. The Praetorians had been marching in formation as they left the settlement. Though they didn't seem to pay any heed to it as they all marched. However, Livia had caught the wounded man in the back of the cart, and she stopped then, and there in the moment. She didn't know what compelled her to help, but she figured if she was going to start digging up burial mounds, she would have to earn these people's trust.

She held up her hand, and made a fist, causing her Praetorians to stop in their tracks as well, their armor making a clanking sound as they abruptly stopped, and the men clenched their weapons closely.

"Julius, fetch the medical kit from our cart." Livia instructed. The Praetorian offered a sharp nod, before starting off towards what was left of the stables, and the Argosian mule cart, which had been guarded by two vigilant Praetorians since Ivar's fall.

Livia turned to face the Mule Cart, before she called out to it. "Hætta!" Livia called out, moving swiftly after the mule cart, towards it even, though her nordic words were twisted by a Latin style accent, the word itself was clear, and the moment Livia managed to catch up to the mule cart, was the moment that the Praetorian returned with a large white briefcase, that had a large red cross emblazoned on it. The Praetorian looked around, confused for a moment as he handed it towards the Legata, another Praetorian approaching with a large bidon of water, which sloshed inside the plastic container.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson Character Portrait: Erik Thorvaldsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Sigurdsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Sigurdsson
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Thorvald Asvaldsson and his son Erik Thorvaldsson were just about to enter the final spiked gate and approach the Iskjerne Castle in their slow moving mule wagon when suddenly they heard someone call out behind them.

"Hætta!" Livia commanded as she quickly started to approach the back of the stopping cart. Erik would discreetly move his hand towards his waistline to grab his small curved seax, but his father Thorvald would seize his arm and stop him, glancing at him quietly for a brief moment before turning around to look at Livia the Legata and her approaching guards. "Let me handle this," he whispered to his son. Thorvald Asvaldsson would remove his hat and nod quietly to the Praetorians, without making any sudden moves. Erik followed suit, easing up and and bowing his head quietly.

Erik watched distrustfully but curiously as one of the Praetorians walked up to Livia with a large white briefcase with a bright red cross on it, gazing at the wounded passenger in the back of the hay wagon before looking around. Soon another Praetorian approached the mule cart with a plastic water container. Thorvald and Erik glanced at one another silently before turning to look again at the Praetorian guards and their female leader. They understood Livia just fine, but they did not recognize her Latinized accent. Thorvald decided to try and speak to her and find out what she wanted as he looked down at the injured person in the back of his wagon before looking at her.

"Kveðja sómakona mín. Ég er Þorvaldur, sonur Asvalds víðs vegar um haf, og þetta er sonur minn Erik, sem er að ferðast mér við hlið. Þekkir þú þennan mann aftan í kerrunni? Við fundum hann á einni hæðinni, eins og hann er núna. Við vitum ekki hvernig hann komst á þennan hátt. En ég get fullvissað þig um að það vorum ekki við sem rændum hann. Við ætluðum bara að koma honum í musterið og skilja hann eftir. Við erum bara fátækir bændur, eins og þú sérð. Við höfum enga peninga en þér er velkomið að líta í kringum þig og taka það sem þú vilt. Vinsamlegast vinsamlegast ekki meiða okkur." the fifty-year-old man said, still holding his hat in his hands.

Thorvald's accent was just as bad as Livia's accent, it seemed, and although he had the appearance and makings of a true Norseman, and could speak fluently, it was apparent to the sharply tuned ears that Thorvald Bloodyfist was not a native to this northernmost part of the land. Nor was Erik, for they both had redder skin than the Iskjerne Vikings, as if they had been traveling for a very long time in the hot sun. Thorvald and Erik watched quietly with widened eyes, obviously very alert and aware of their surroundings, if not a little intimidated and confused by the well dressed Praetorians who outnumbered them considerably. What did they want with two poor farmers and a wounded man? Were they planning to highjack the wagon? Thorvald swallowed and lowered his head, making himself appear as humble as possible while hoping not to offend Livia and her guards as they examined the wagon.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson Character Portrait: Erik Thorvaldsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Sigurdsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Sigurdsson
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Livia quietly reached out to Ragnar in the back of the cart, she was trying to take a look at his wounds, and unlike the beserkers, and the other impoverished inhabitants of this village, Livia's hands would be clean, her fingernails well manicured, and slightly polished, her hands were calloused not from labor, but from years of battle, it was clear she knew how to wield a sword. She looked up and over towards Thorvald, and then back towards one of the Praetorians who was not otherwise occupied.

"Claudius, revertetur per viam portae, non potest dicere Generalis Hama reversus cum hospite." She instructed in Argosian, which sounded a great deal like ancient Latin, the same Latin spoken by the Romans.

"Etiam, Legata." The Praetorian said, bringing his hand across his chest, and bowing briefly. He turned swiftly, and began to move up towards the mountain, his footfalls heavy, and carefully disciplined.

After giving her instructions, Livia reached a slender hand out towards the back of the mule cart, and she placed an armored boot on the back to pull herself up and into the back of the cart, while turning her head towards Thorvald.

"Ég er Livia, fyrsta Legate. Ég vil ekki hlutina þína, ég vil hjálpa þessum manni." She said, her words once more being twisted by her accent, while she directed her attention to Ragnar, grimacing at the wounds he sustained while the Praetorian tossed the white briefcase into the back of the cart, and the second hefted the jug of water up into the back of the cart as well.

"Ef við komumst hann ekki læknishjálp, hann mun deyja." Livia added, this strange language which she had spent the latter part of her time here studying was broken, and difficult to pronounce but she kept trying. She looked over Ragnar, and noted the wounds covering his body, several puncture wounds of different types, lacerations, and he appeared to be succumbing to the effects of some kind of toxin. Livia was no doctor, but she had attended classes offered by the Taiyou in first aid techniques. If she could stabilize him, they could take him to Niihama to receive medical attention. She reached down to her waist, and pulled a pugio from it's sheath, the shiny, clean blade glinted in the sunlight, while Livia started to cut away at the leather straps, or fabric that held Ragnar's shirt on, if he had one. The blade sliced through the shirt fabric almost effortlessly, and Livia noted the wounds were packed with dirt, and festering.

She opened the white briefcase, which revealed dozens of stainless steel tools of various types, scalpels, forceps, scissors, hemostats, bandage scissors, and all manner of different tools, which glimmered in the sunlight.

Livia opened a bottle of a clear liquid which had some unusual symbols on it, a bottle of alcohol disinfectant printed in Taiyou. Once Livia opened it up, the strong smell permeated the back of the cart. She first doused her Spatha with it, and then her hands, rubbing the alcohol before rinsing with the water container. Once dry, she pulled a pair of latex gloves from the kit, snapping them onto her hands, she started with the larger, more obvious wounds.

She worked the spear wounds first, digging the dirt and mud from the deep lacerations, and then flushing them with alcohol, which stung, and then water, until the wounds appeared clean, Two of the Praetorians moved into the back of the cart to restrain Ragnar if necessary.

The Legata worked quickly, flushing the wound clean, and then packing it with gauze, with the larger wounds stabilized, Livia moved to the smaller wounds, flushing with water to clean the dirt from them, and then disinfecting them with the alcohol. Some of the smaller cuts, Livia began to take some thread, and a curved needle, and suture them closed.

"What happened to this man?" She remarked at first in English, and then she stopped herself. "Hvað gerðist"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson Character Portrait: Erik Thorvaldsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Sigurdsson
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Ragnar Sigurdsson suddenly jumped as Livia reached out to touch him. The wide icey blue gaze of his one good eye stared at her with a look of hatred and madness, not just at her but at the whole entire world in general. His other eye had been swollen shut. His forehead had an open gash in it, in the shape of a cross, and there was blood running down his face. His left side had been pierced with a sharp object, causing a trail of blood which soaked his tattered brown shirt and trousers. His right hand was swelled up from being bitten by a viper. He had bare feet with dirty toenails, and his left foot, also swollen, had two puncture wounds on it from snake's fangs. His neck was also bruised, as if he had been choked or strangled by a large python. The whole back of his shirt had been ripped open by being whipped constantly, and there were several lashings on his backside. Both of his wrists and ankles were scraped up and lacerated from being shackled, and from the holes in his hands and feet, it seemed that at some point in time, Ragnar had been crucified. He had been through hell and back, and had every right to be skittish and jumpy at the stranger before him.

But as she slowly lifted his sticky shirt up to examine the gash in his side, Ragnar stared at Livia quietly, his face void of expression as he tried to relax. Even in this horrible state, Ragnar still had the gaze of a very fierce and strong individual. There was hardly any fear in him at all, only a deep sense of hatred and contempt for those who had placed him in his current condition. It was amazing he was even still alive at all, but the badly injured Danish Viking showed no sign of remorse or weakness as he winced in pain, gritting his teeth as Livia examined his many wounds. She would also notice many scars and other former injuries which had healed over time. It appeared that Ragnar had not only been beaten, robbed and left for dead, but had been brutally tortured for many days, perhaps even weeks. Yet his resilience still held. Clearly he was no ordinary human being, as he stared fiercely at the Praetorians who were carrying out their orders from the Argosian commander.

"Claudius, revertetur per viam portae, non potest dicere Generalis Hama reversus cum hospite." She instructed in her native language. Thorvald Asvaldsson and his son didn't understand a single word of it, but Ragnar Lothbrok understood the gist of it, having learned some English and stylized Latin from a Christian priest he had once captured and made friends with long ago.

Ragnar laid there quietly with his head propped up against the back of the wagon seat as Livia climbed up into the mule cart next to him. He didn't say anything, only gritting in pain while hiding his agony and refusing to show fear as she spoke to Thorvald in a language all four of them could understand. "I'm Livia, the first Legate. I do not want your things, I want to help this man." She said, once again with her strangely delicate accent. Thorvald Asvaldsson just nodded quietly.

The Norsemen watched helplessly as the two Praetorian Guards tossed the white medical field kit into the back of the parked mule cart along with the jug of water that Livia had requested. "If we do not get him medical help, he will die." She said, as she began to examine Ragnar's injuries more closely, using her pugio to cut his shirt open and expose the festering dirt covered wounds. The young man Erik would grimace at the sight of so much blood and pain. He had never seen someone so badly injured before, and it surprised him that Ragnar wasn't crying or screaming for mercy.

Thorvald Bloodyfist and Erik the Red watched silently as Livia opened the white briefcase, exposing an array of shining tools and medical equipment. Ragnar just glanced for a second at the tool kit before looking into Livia's eyes again, as if gazing into her soul as she snapped on her latex gloves and proceeded to clean out his wounds. He winced in pain as the alcohol touched his skin, but he made no efforts to stop her. In fact, he seemed more curious and interested in what Livia was doing, as if he was almost taking mental notes in his mind and learning from it as she flushed his injuries with water and alcohol before stitching him up. Ragnar remained somewhat conscious throughout the entire process, but the viper's venom was still slowly taking effect as his vision started to go blurry from the snake bites.

"What happened to this man?" She asked, a bit alarmed it would seem that Ragnar was still breathing. She then repeated herself in their native language. Thorvald and Erik, just like Ragnar, had understood both East Anglish and Old Norse, so Thorvald decided to respond in the Empyrean English dialect instead to make it slightly easier for Livia, seeing as she appeared to be struggling with their more Nordic pronunciations.

"I don't know. Like I said, we just found him like this," the old man answered, speaking directly to the Legata now as his red-haired son continued to examine the shining tools and equipment inside the white briefcase. "Vipera berus," the injured patient suddenly chimed in Latin before closing his eyes and falling limp. He was still breathing slowly, but he was starting to lose consciousness. Thorvald and Erik looked at one another ackwardly, confused again by the strange words before turning to gaze at Livia and the Iskjerne Viking in the back of the wagon who was fading quickly.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson Character Portrait: Erik Thorvaldsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Sigurdsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Sigurdsson
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Livia took brief notes of the ligature marks on the wrists, and the legs, and she took brief note of the cross etched into his forehead. Livia did not move to flush this wound with alcohol, as she didn’t want to risk injury to the eyes, rather she reached up slowly to flush the cross shaped gash with some water.

“Hold still.” She said slowly, dabbing at the gash with a piece of gauze, cleaning the dirt from it, and slowly, and carefully moving to suture the wound close. This close, the faint floral smell of perfume wafted from the heavy armor, and verdant indigo cape that the woman was wearing, her arms were slender, and lacked many of the scars that someone of her stature should have. Of course, not being cut was part of her skill.

When Ragnar gazed into Livia’s piercing blue eyes, he would see the soul of a cunning warrior, a brilliant strategist, and a woman who was wise beyond her years, touring the galaxy and representing her people on the council afforded her knowledge beyond what a simple primitive could ever hope to attain. Her service to both her own country, and the Taiyou allowed her to see battles that were beyond comprehension. She had the weathered look of a great general, or king, someone who had been used to leading their people in battle.

“I’m going to take him with me.” Livia answered, while she began to fish around inside the briefcase, reaching in to pull out a small box that contained a small syringe. The text on this box was printed in a different alien language, one that resembled a cross between runic, and cuneiform. Livia inspected the vial of dark purple liquid and then the label which was printed in Taiyou. The label stated the chemical was only to be used in case of extreme emergency, and that it was highly addictive. Fortunately, she didn’t use it, rather she fished around inside the box, digging deep until she pulled out another small box, this one had a picture of a stylized rattlesnake on it. The rattlesnake had a helmet on it with a red cross, and the text was typed in some strange eastern language.

Livia figured it was worth a try as she drew the yellowish liquid into a needle, she made sure to look at the correct dosage from the instructions, and using the instructions as a reference point, she slid the needle into Ragnar’s deltoid muscle, and pushed the plunger to inject the contents, a potent polyvalent antivenin that was designed to counteract the venoms of vipers and their related species. Livia didn’t know if it would work, as the Taiyou engineered the antivenin from snake species they knew of, but she figured it couldn’t hurt.

Once the needle was empty, she capped it and placed it in a small red plastic sharps box, just at the moment the Praetorians returned with their own mule cart.

“General Hama is expecting us, he said there is an ambulance standing by.” One of the Praetorians remarked in an English dialect this time, while Livia nodded, reaching into a leather pouch and producing a small handful of silver denarius coins, passing them to Thorvald.

“There is a cave in the mountains north of here, can you take us there? I will pay you for your trouble.” Livia asked.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Livia Caesarius Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson Character Portrait: Erik Thorvaldsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Sigurdsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Sigurdsson
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Thorvald Asvaldsson took the small handful of silver denarius coins in the palm of his hand, looking down at them before looking back up at Livia for a moment. He then turned and handed the silver coins to his son Erik the Red, who picked up one of the coins and bit into it to see if it was real. Thorvald then rested his hand on Erik's shoulder.

"Thank you kindly Your Grace, but this old man has already sworn his allegiances to another. Besides, I will only slow your haste. These old bones have been traveling for many weeks, and I am in need of some rest. I will send my son with you instead, he can take you to the mountains." Thorvald said, squeezing his son's shoulder gently before patting him on the shoulder and climbing down out of the mule wagon.

The red-headed young man stared at his father quietly before nodding and placing the silver denarii into his belt pouch and grabbing the reigns. Thorvald nodded respectfully to Livia and her Praetorian guards before putting his hat back on and slapping the mule's ass with his open hand. "Go now my boy, and be quick." Thorvald said as the four-wheeled cart started moving.

Erik the Red nodded and whipped the reigns, shouting loudly. "Yah!!" He yelled as the wagon started to pull away, gaining speed with Livia and Ragnar in the back of it as he carried out the Legata's wishes, taking her north towards the mountains. Ragnar began fading in and out at that moment, talking nonsensically in a way that was incomprehensible to both Livia and Erik.

"Aethelstan... Aethelstan don't leave me." Ragnar said weakly as he squinted his one good eye open and reached out to Thorvald, but the old man was already beginning to walk back towards the castle. Ragnar would blink slightly, beginning to feel nauseated and dizzy from the polyvalent antivenin Livia had injected into his shoulder. He tried to squint and blink, turning his head to look up at Livia again. With his blurry vision, he thought for a moment that she was a valkyrie. The sun's rays cascading over her head and shoulders with brilliant rainbow colors appeared to him like a halo, winged helmet or like the wings of an angel as he smiled very slightly at Livia before laying his head back and closing his eyes again. "Eir, beloved Eir, don't let my wife find out that I'm dead or she'll kill me." Ragnar muttered softly before losing consciousness and passing out.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Thorvald Asvaldsson Character Portrait: Erik Thorvaldsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Sigurdsson Character Portrait: Robert I of Ellaria
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About a week later, give or take...

One day while Thorvald "Bloodyfist" Asvaldsson was playing a game of tossing his cork bottle plug into his empty cow horn drinking cup while sitting in the public mead hall deep in the center of Iskjerne Bay's old viking ring fortress on the natural dirt floor on top of a thin cloth butt cushion in front of the open fire pit, three distinguished characters walked through the door into the mead hall, gaining attention from everyone at the mead gathering. Thorvald would mind his own business while listening to all the gossip in and around the village.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Erik Thorvaldsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Sigurdsson Character Portrait: Robert I of Ellaria
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Iskjerne Bay...

About two weeks later...



Iskjerne Bay, a once marvelous Viking kingdom far in the frozen north, which despite its tiny size had been for a time one of the most powerful terrestrial kingdoms in the universe, having rebuilt itself from war after war, was now nothing more than a kingless shattered settlement once again. The once vibrant and powerful kingdom of Sigurd Hring, and his predecessor King Egil who had established its first colony at least a century before that, was now in turmoil.

Sigurd Hring had expanded greatly upon the establishment of Iskjerne Bay, along with his grandson Ivar the Boneless, and the once broken Aether Docks, the only remnant left of the original settlement, had now grown into a mighty city with a village, shipyard, mead hall, arena, watch tower, sawmill, forge, and even a castle. Iskjerne Bay's ring fortress featured a motte and bailey structure with a concentrical ring of circular wooden and stone walls surrounded by large moats, and reinforced with battlements, draw bridges and boobytraps. The magically endowed divine statue of Sigurd Hring still guarded one side of the gateway, while the broken wooden statue of Ivar the Boneless, still split down the middle with one side laying facedown on the ground, was still partially standing on the other side of the gateway, so that both statues towered above the main entrance, flanking anyone who crossed through the Younger Futhark rune-inscripted gates.

At first glance, Iskjerne Bay appeared to still be holding strong, as most of the structures, despite being partially damaged by many battles, foreign raiders and earthquakes, were still standing and for the most part remained inhabitable or occupied. But the outskirts and suburban landscape outside the once great settlement were now riddled with many burial mounds which looked like a cluster of wavering hills. Once again, winter fell upon the land just as it had in previous years. Iskjerne Bay was especially cold and dark, having no sun at all for an entire week of nightshade as the aurora provided its only light, streaming with colorful hues of green, blue, purple and violet. Gaia's moons and stars would shimmer like diamonds in the sky, appearing closer to the residents of Iskjerne Bay than anywhere else in Ellaria, and the heavens above would seem surreal to them at this time of the year. But the land at their feet told quite a different story, as the thick white snowcaps covered the stone walls, houses, halls, fences, mountains and dead forest. Iskjerne Bay was beginning to turn snow white again, but this year brought gloom and sadness, famine, plague and death.

There was a shortage of useful wood in Iskjerne Bay, which would greatly devastate the economy. This meant no wood for ship building, woodworking, earthen home improvements and repairs. No wood also meant no sustainable forest, causing a decline in the natural animals who had once flourished but had now migrated away, which resulted in a scarcity of food and furs for which to make clothing and provide other needs for the winter. To make matters worse, a bubonic plague had started to sweep across Iskjerne Bay, slowly and silently like a thief in the night, caused by lice and fleas and brought upon by all the wars and rotten corpses who had now laid buried all over the land. It would be easy to think that the mass suicide of the Iskjerne Vikings under Sigurd Hring, or the arrogance and neglect of Ivar the Boneless, had been the cause of Iskjerne Bay's misfortune. But the sad fact of the matter was that it had been the alfar, dvergar, ljosalfar, sjoalfar, svartalfar, dokkalfar, dissir, einherjar, gnomes, faeries, dragons and landvaettir which had abandoned the Viking kingdom and went elsewhere.

The Iskjerne residents had all gathered in the public mead hall. The days following the full week of darkness would return to the normal endless days of sunlight, cast by Gaia's three local stars, but in this remote region of the north, horseshoed by the Weargtooth Mountains, winters were still just as cold and relentless as they had been in previous years. Iskjerne Bay was located in the arctic northern region of Ellaria, where the winters had seemed almost like a small medieval Ice Age.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Hrafn-Floki Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Erik Thorvaldsson Character Portrait: Robert I of Ellaria
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Hrollaug the Walker, now dubbed Duke Robert I of the Tartarean Normans, a vassal and earl of the Tartarean Kingdom of Ellaria, had gathered an army of Frankish Christian warriors of mixed descent. Hrollaug had married a Tartarean princess, who had refused to marry the Iskjerne Viking savage unless he turned from his heathen ways, learned to speak French, and convert to Christianity, something which Duke Rollo surprisingly consented to. This would alienate him from his Iskjerne Viking fellowmen, but it also brought him great power and wealth, and his influence in Iskjerne Bay remained strong. He was, after all, the son of Sigurd Hring, the greatest king the Iskjerne Vikings had ever known.

But Robert I of Ellaria was not there to just recruit new heads for his growing Norman army. He had vowed to restore Iskjerne Bay to its former glory. He was there to take the throne, and remodel the kingdom according to his own strategy. This would not sit well with Hrafn-Floki and his leidang, for they had not risked their lives at sea to watch the Iskjerne Kingdom fall into Norman hands. The kingdom was split between both jarls, with Robert I, the former Vikingr prince, gaining the upper hand as more and more people flocked to his side.

During the midst of this political chaos, the ambitious King Harald Fairhair had also risen to prominence. While the bulk of the Vikings seemed more eager to join Rollo, the greatest and most powerful people among them had decided to support King Harald instead. This included Queen Lagertha, the former wife and widow of Ragnar Lothbrok, who was now married to King Harald, and Lagertha's sons Bjorn Ironside, and Ubbe Ragnarsson were now devoted to their cause, preferring a Norse pagan ruler over a Norman monotheistic one. King Harald would consult with Duke Rollo and discuss business, attempting to persuade him back to his corner. They shared drinks together and engaged in civil conversation, but Rollo refused to join the pagans.

Afterwards, the Norwegian king would meet up with Floki at the burial mounds, where he had been silently weeping by himself at the gravesite of his young deceased daughter. Harald Finehair would glance over the burial mounds, taking note of the presence of the Argosians who had come to collect their own dead and take them back to their homeland. Indeed, it seemed that Iskjerne Bay was not at all the place it had once been. Harald placed his hand on Floki's shoulder and consulted him, sympathizing with his loss. But his true purpose for reaching out to Floki was to inform him of Rollo's intentions in hopes of bringing Floki and his leidang to the other side. King Harald knew that Hrafn-Floki would be more apt to join the Norse pagan Vikings, and with his help, he was hoping to establish a large enough army to expel the foreigners from the kingdom, both Norman and Argosian alike.

"I don't want to stay here anymore, King Harald, this is no longer my home," Floki said, gazing up at him. Harald Finehair would scoff a smirk, glancing around them again before looking back down at him.

"Where will you go?" Finehair asked him, his voice overtoned by a deep Norwegian accent. Floki chuckled, wept, wiped his nose on his shirt sleeve and stood up, looking at him with black eyeliner trailing down his cheeks.

"I want to go there," Floki said, pointing up at one of the moons of Gaia with his index finger. King Harald would glance up at Colossa, the small red glowing moon, before quirking a brow in confusion just as King Harald's brother Halfdan "the Black" Halfdansson approached them, accompanied by Erik "the Red" Thorvaldsson from the mead hall.

"And how will you get there, Floki? We have no boats that can fly. We have no technology, everything has been destroyed or stolen." King Harald reminded him. But Floki just giggled, looking around cautiously before showing him the small transparent milky white sunstone in his pocket.

"I don't need boats that can fly, King Harald, I have the gods, and I have this" Floki smiled, placing the small sunstone crystal back into his pocket. It was the easily overlooked sunstone that Sigurd Hring and his predecessors had once used to locate the sun on cloudy days, and which did not have the same magical abilities as the pinkish purple crystals which had enabled the Empyrean Norsemen to fly their ships, but it was apparent that Floki knew something that the others did not as he chuckled lightly, looking at the ground as if lost in his thoughts.

"So that's it then. You're just going to leave on some dangerous god-fearing quest for the moon. You plan to go alone on this journey?" Harald asked, a hint of obvious doubt in his voice, beginning to think that Hrafn-Floki was starting to lose his mind and his wits over the loss of his daughter. Floki always was a bit overly superstitious and crazy in his way of thinking. But suddenly, Harald's brother stepped forward.

"Nay, he's not alone..." Halfdan Halfdansson said with a pause, looking at his brother King Harald before turning and nodding to Floki. "I will go with you," Halfdan the Black said confidently. At that moment, Erik Thorvaldsson would also step forward, nodding his head in affirmation.

"Aye... I will go too," Erik the Red followed, stepping beside Hrafn-Floki before looking at King Harald with a bold expression on his face. Harald Finehair would snicker a brief laugh before looking at his own brother, then nodding quietly. What could he say or do to stop them? They were all freemen after all, and in their hearts, Harald, Halfdan, Hrafn-Floki and Erik knew that Iskjerne Bay could only have one king. There was no need for any of them to fight, especially since all of them were Norse pagans, related in some way or another with a common enemy.

That evening, Hrafn-Floki and his small leidang would get ready to leave again. They were accompanied by Halfdan Halfdansson, Erik Thorvaldsson and Hrafn-Floki's loyal wife Helga, along with a small crew of Iskjerne Vikings as they packed their bags and prepared to set sail, heading for the Crystal Nexus of Gaia, the only other place that Floki knew of that could take him to Colossa, or anywhere else his accomplices wanted to go from there.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Ragnar Sigurdsson Character Portrait: Robert I of Ellaria
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The attack came without warning in the middle of the night. Without even offering so much as a challenge, without mercy or respect, the shadowy figures snuck their way around the ring fortress, entering people's homes and without hesitation, noise or resistance, proceeded to massacre people in their beds while they were sleeping. For bigger families, the dark shadowy figures stood over their beds in number. The only sound they made was the soft thump and splash of the axe as they aimed for people's necks and heads, being more brutal than tactful, but with a certain way that seemed almost organized, or even strategized. As some people were still awake, even a great many of them had been kneeling in prayer with their eyes closed, only for someone to walk up silently behind them and slit their throats, or even just to hit them in the head with an axe.

The homes were burned and billowed with smoke, dry grass and bed sheets set on fire slowly and quietly, as King Harald Finehair walked up casually to the guards outside the castle where Duke Robert of Ellaria had been staying. Harald Fairhair looked calm and unaware of the impending danger as he stood outside the gatehouse, and gazed up at the battlements, where archers had been standing. He noticed that the archers were high up, but had a limited view to the horizon and the castle's circular moat, rather than the guards who were directly below them. King Harald nodded to one of the guards, walking up to him with a smile, folding his boar skinned cape back with one hand while resting his other hand on the hilt of his sword. The guards watched him quietly, as Harald casually stopped in front of them and looked around, smiling.

"It's a good night tonight. Not too cold," King Harald said, hoping to initiate a conversation. He was still briefly thinking about his brother Halfdan's decision to go with Hrafn-Floki as the dark shadowy figures continued to move around the ring fort, villages and camps, their indoor fires being temporarily cloaked by the billowing waves of smoke, and a lack of witnesses in the surrounding area as they engaged in stealthy mass murder, nearing their way slowly closer and closer to the castle while slaughtering ruthlessly, men, women and children of all ages and ethnicities. These cloaked assassins would kill the Iskjerne Vikings, and the Argosians, and the Taiyou, and the Tartarean Normans, or whoever else might jeopardize their guerilla operation, seemingly without biased, hidden under the cover of the increasing smoke and darkness as they made their way around the ring fortress and into the battlements, either sneaking around the guards or proceeding to quickly pick them off one by one.

"C'est une bonne nuit pour une promenade, ouais?" the guard asked, watching King Harald gaze up at the stars for a moment. Upon seeing this, the guard would look up at the night sky for a moment also, taking note of the stars. At that moment, as if by pure chance or irony, there was a shooting star in the dark blue heavens. This trailblazing phenomenon caught the attention of everyone who would notice it, including the archers and the guards, except for those who weren't facing that same direction. King Harald stepped closer to the guard who had spoken to him, smiling and nodding quietly while keeping his hand rested on the hilt of his sheathed sword, obviously not intending to use it, as that would be extremely difficult to draw from its sheath at such close range anyway. But Harald had another plan, instead using the arm he had used to hold his cape back, as he had unsheathed the knife on the back of his waist belt. He had to be quick now, and he would be, as King Harald turned abruptly and drove the knife into the guard's chain-mail throat protector.

The second guard would jump slightly and turn to look at Harald Finehair, being caught completely off guard by the sudden attack. He tried to react, but before he could even make any more sudden moves, the second guard was struck by an arrow to the throat by someone in the shadows. Soon, a small band of black-painted Vikings would step out of the shadows and accompany King Harald into the Iskjerne Castle, their axes still dripping with the blood of the many people they had just murdered in their sleep without prejudice. They had been the dark shadowy figures, and there were many more, as the inhabitants of Iskjerne Bay would soon discover as Harald's Vikings suddenly came pouring out into the streets, beginning to roar and shout as they revealed themselves to everyone in the area, gaining a little bit more attention as Duke Rollo woke up during the ensuing chaos and, upon smelling smoke, would look outside his castle window to see the blazing fires and running figures below. The kingdom was being raized and raided once again, only this time by King Harald, who was already inside the castle with him.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Argosian Soldier Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Ragnar Sigurdsson Character Portrait: Robert I of Ellaria
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To the Argosians, it seemed that the treachery if savages knew no bounds, and was without limits for the small band of Praetorian guards, and thermir servants, and the small encampment they maintained outside of the main settlement, beyond its walls, where they could come and go without relying on someone to open the gates for them.

That fateful night, the contubernium of Argosian Praetorians slept in shifts as they normally did, four were asleep, two were charged with maintaining their equipment, and two stood watch on each end of the tent, which flapped and fluttered in the frigid wind. Two fires burned where each of the soldiers sat, making their home atop some stones, and one even managed to drag a piece of driftwood to serve as a makeshift bench.

The Praetorian on the south side of the tent was busy oiling his sword, applying a thin coat of synthetic oil on his sword, it was a practice given to them by the Taiyou to keep the razors edge on the nanosteel blade, the same synthetic oils kept their armor from rusting, and kept it's sheen.

The Praetorian happened to avert his gaze from the orange glow that reflected from his sword to see smoke billowing from the city. He acted quickly, moving into the tent and quietly rousing the inhabitants inside.

"The city is under siege, quickly to arms!" He hissed, rousting the other Praetorians whom all wore nothing but their purple tunics, without time to don their armor, they grabbed their swords and shields, and swiftly moved out of the tent, each of the eight Praetorians formed a defensive circle around the tent with their shields, each held their swords out, and over their shields while the my crouched, their eyes focusing into the darkness.

The first painted viking warriors would find themselves charging into the circle, and when they closed the distance, the Praetorians struck, using their large shields to block incoming axe blows, which clashed with the enameled nanosteel with a deafening metallic clang, the Praetorians drove their swords deep into their bellies, the razor sharp gladius swords slicing, and disemboweling efficiently as their honed edges sliced through flesh.

Once impaled by sword they were shoved back by shield, Argosian sandals digging into the mud, and blood soaked dirt.

"Hold the formation!" The Decanus called out. Anticipating the next wave any moment.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Argosian Soldier Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Robert I of Ellaria
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As the Argosian Praetorians slept in shifts, going about their normal routine, suddenly the Iskjerne Vikings swept upon them from out of the darkness, their bodies painted and covered with black ashy soot, in great number. They had widened eyes and white roaring teeth, as their silence suddenly turned to fury. They had no armour whatsoever, and no shirts either. They fought bare chested, even with a number of women who were partially exposed and also covered in paint beside them. These heathens were waving daggers, pitchforks, rakes and spears, howling and gnashing as they fearlessly came in waves, lunging and leaping, raking and pommeling their way through the Argosian encampment.

No sooner did the Praetorians brace themselves before a wave of vikings came out of the darkness and charged at them on foot. Like animals on the hunt, they remained stealthy and silent until they neared the Argosian tent, at which point they began making noises like jackals and hyenas, roaring like bears, grunting like pigs, and howling like ravenous wolves, bearing their white eyes and teeth, contrasted to their axes, rakes and pitchforks, and bodies which they had painted black. The terror of the north, which had long been suspected but not at that particular moment, had arrived. The isolated pagans, with no fear of death, slammed into the Praetorian shields and swords like a Mack truck, hitting them with great number.

Death was instant and quick, as the Vikings sacrificed their own lives to open the lines, being crushed by shields or thrust through with a gladius, those brave spirits destined for Odin's halls. But the Vikings would use those rakes and spears, axes and pitchforks to hook the Praetorian shields and counter with remarkable savagery. Opening the defenses, flaming arrows suddenly came out of nowhere. They were not raining down from the sky, but coming from directly straight ahead behind the first wave of vikings, arrows which would be specifically aimed at hitting these openings in the praetorian's line, and striking the men who were holding the Praetorian shields.

Without time to don their armor, the Argosian ranks soon began to falter. But timing was of the essence for the greater scheme, and some of those flaming arrows would perch themselves in the tents, haystacks and wood pile reserves around the Argosian encampment, setting the entire camp ablaze just as they were doing to the rest of the smokey village. More Vikings appeared, another wave from behind the enemy camp on the other side. They would descend upon the Praetorian camp from behind and greet anyone who tried to retreat as they started to surround the smoking tents, a few hardy Vikings already entering the burning shelters to investigate and kill all of its occupants, while others went around the sides of the encampment and flanked the Praetorian guards from both sides, squeezing them in.

The Vikings were not looking for a drawn out war or battle. They were intending to massacre the foreigners and eliminate their bloodlines from Iskjerne Bay, in order to restore full power and security back to the Viking territory. More axes and pitchforks, hooked spears, rakes and arrows came directly for the praetorian's in every direction. Once a big enough gap was made, some of the Vikings would step over their own dead and breech the Argosian shield wall, hacking through the center line with their axes, swords and brute strength, flaming arrows grazing past their heads and just over their shoulders towards the invading enemies. The flanks drew heavy as the Vikings outnumbered them, while those who had descended from behind were walking around quickly with swords, axes and lit torches, looting and setting fire to everything in the small camp. The decanus would watch as his formation crumbled, quickly and unexpectedly as the Vikings hacked their way through in small numbers.

Just then, an arrow would whizz towards the chest of the decanus, it's flaming point being sharp, narrow and true. It sailed straight towards him, without curving or arching trajectory, as if it had been meant specifically for him. Heads rolled around the encampment as bodies hit the dry burned grass and wet sloshy snow. "No slaves!" a voice commanded, as Ubbe Ragnarsson stepped out of the darkness holding a bloody axe. He began walking up towards the camp with a bit of haste, examining the situation as if he had just arrived from another short massacre nearby, and was preparing himself to do it again as he joined his fellowmen at the front lines, a cascaded curtain of fire and smoke billowing in the background behind him as he walked calmly towards his enemy without thought or hesitation.

This was only a taste of the terror of the north...

King Harald was not making plans or trying to think irrationally. King Harald already had a plan, and he was going through with it. While Ubbe's forces were invading the Argosians, King Harald was invading Duke Rollo at the castle. Harald had a strategy for dealing with the Rikkisopi Cave System, and he knew he needed to secure the entirety of Iskjerne Bay in order to follow through with it. He was on limited time, and every moment would count, as a few other disassociated tribes of Vikings proceeded to pass the hemmed up enemies and villagers towards the northeastern mountains. Harald's guerilla warriors had already seized the watch tower on the rock face, and were eager to set their attention on the caves.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Seno Miyagi Character Portrait: Yoko Kayabuki Character Portrait: Argosian Soldier Character Portrait: Imperial Taiyou Army Character Portrait: The Berserkers Character Portrait: The Svinfylking Character Portrait: Sigurd Hring Character Portrait: Erling Snake Character Portrait: Uhtred the Godless Character Portrait: Takao Eguchi Character Portrait: Dainn Character Portrait: Dibble Character Portrait: The Ljosalfar Character Portrait: Ragnar Lothbrok Character Portrait: Bjorn Ironside Character Portrait: Ubbe Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Lagertha Character Portrait: Aslaug Sigurdsdottir Character Portrait: Harald Fairhair Character Portrait: Indisla The Beautiful Character Portrait: Ivaldi Character Portrait: Volund Character Portrait: Iskjerne Ulfhednar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Berserkers Character Portrait: Iskjerne Svinfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hrafnfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Kattrfylking Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hornuglar Character Portrait: Iskjerne Hestahar Character Portrait: Halfdan Ragnarsson Character Portrait: Halfdan the Black Character Portrait: Ragnar Sigurdsson Character Portrait: Robert I of Ellaria
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When bodies slammed against shields with audible thunks, immediately followed by the sickening crunches of swords impaling flesh, and then the now dying viking warriors shoved back, there was yet another wave, slamming against the shields to meet their death, and then shoved back, slowly forming a ring of bodies that began to pile up, one after another as viking warriors fell against Argosian shields, and Argosian swords. The shield wall did not yield, for a time as the warriors slammed against them, only to be killed. The Decanus was there, in the fight, bracing against the weight of muscle, and flesh only to drive his sword into the belly of his enemy. This however could not go on forever. The never-ending sea of torches, pitchforks, and arrows were dauntless, but the Praetorians held fast, as the bodies around them piled up.

Seconds dragged on to minutes, minutes dragged on to almost thirty before the first Praetorian soldier began to waver, his muscles were taxed, and the constant onslaught of bodies against his impermeable shield drew upon his muscles, as he struggled to maintain his composure. He jabbed his blade, impaling yet another savage warrior and sending him to his death, with all of his reserves, he shoved the barbarian back, into the piling mound of his brothers only for a flaming arrow to sail past him, and into the tent. The deafening clatter of pig iron on nanosteel echoed through Iskjerne Bay as the arrows struck shields, bouncing harmlessly into the ground, but with the tent behind them ablaze, the Praetorians were now no longer defending an objective, they were going to take as many of these savages as they could before they succumbed to greater number.

The Praetorian formation broke, and the individual Praetorians moved into the savage swarm, driving their blade into as many as they could before they were overtaken, each Praetorian fought valiantly, deflecting incoming blows with his large shield, and driving his blood coated blade deep into the belly of the nearest ash covered savage, it was a battle that would earn them titles on the highest Argosian honors once the legion learned of the betrayals here.

The Decanus too fought bravely, feeling what felt like someone punching his chest as an arrow seared into his armor, striking it with an audible 'tink' and a small shower of sparks, the Arrow stuck harmlessly into the ground as the Decanus held his blade firmly, staring directly into the eyes of Ubbe Ragnarsson as he drove his gladius into the throat of a nearby warrior, and immediately deflecting another axe blow with his shield, before impaling yet another, and kicking him off his glistening sword.

There was a brief lull as the Decanus stared with hatred at Ubbe, the Decanus spoke in carefully chosen Argosian words.

"Alea iacta est."

Immediately after uttering those words, the Decanus fell into his sword, which impaled him, and killed himself instantly, denying Ubbe and his savages the satisfaction of killing him, one last act of defiance secure in the knowledge that the Argosian legion would avenge their deaths, and with his last act of defiance, he left the flaming camp to the pillaging vikings, until the powder stores inside the tent blew, and a massive explosion engulfed all who were nearby, sending splinters of wood, iron, and nanosteel flying in all directions, and a plume of flame began to mushroom into the sky with the acrid smell of gunpowder.

nearly a hundred savages lay dead, or dying in a ring around the formation of Argosian Praetorians, and dozens lie dead around each individual Praetorian, whose purple robes were covered in the blood of their enemies. Fueled by light woods, and gunpowder, the blaze burned hot, intensely so, the orange glow reflecting off of blood coated blades.