Vikingr Taster

Crow

Here’s an excerpt from my novel, Vikingr

Erikr looked down at his right arm, swinging limply by his side. He did not think that he would be able to use it properly again any time soon. Holmegeirr looked across at him and noticed his expression.

“Cheer up, lad.” He said. “That’s a wound you can talk about for years to come. Stories about injuries are very popular. Words bring men fame, and fame brings men immortality. Don’t you want to be immortal?”

Erikr thought about what the merchant had said. Something about immortality appealed to him. The thought of his current life going on forever depressed him, but having generations to come tell his story was very appealing.

“How do I do it?” Erikr asked. “How do I get fame?”

“Word-fame comes from what you do. Each of us has to try to do great deeds which people will be impressed by and talk about. Truly great deeds inspire great stories, which are told from person to person. Maybe one day, they’re even carved somewhere for everyone to see, with pictures and runes explaining your achievements.”

“Are there any stories about you?”

“There were once.” Holmgeirr said, looking up at a passing cloud. “I rowed for half a day without rest on an expedition one time. And there was one raid where I brought back this great candle-holder made out of silver. It was almost as tall as you are.”

“That’s not possible. There aren’t any places with so many candles that they’d need such a big thing to hold them.”

“You haven’t seen a monks’ fort, have you?”

“What’s a monk?”

“Monks are a strange people. They wear long dresses and live without any women.” Holmgeirr said, shaking his head. “Their forts have high stone walls, glass windows and more treasure inside than you can imagine. But not one of them can fight. Can you believe that? They sit on their wealth like fat hens, waiting to be robbed. We just walked into one of those places, took their treasures and left.”

“Don’t they have a jarl to protect them?”

“They have a king.” Holmgeirr replied. “His name is Christus and these monks would wail at us that he would protect them from us, that he was coming to avenge them. Well, I never saw him or one of his karls come after us. But he must be powerful to own so much gold and silver.”

“How many longboats does he have?”

“That’s enough about King Christus. We’re almost at the gate. Remember, you’re supposed to be a fearless vikingr. Try to look confident and don’t say anything. I drive a hard bargain and there’ll be some who will take offence, you’re here to make them think twice before doing anything about it.”

You can find the whole book on Amazon Kindle here.

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