Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Sudden Short Story 25

One man lay upon the battlefield, alive yet bleeding.  Around him were the slain bodies of countless men and angels.  In his right hand he gripped his sword, its blade nearly three feet in length and its pommel featuring what appeared to be a snow globe, which had been vigorously stirred from the melee.  He propped himself up on his left arm, for over him stood an angel with a sword of its own.
"Congratulations," said the angel, "You are the last human left alive.  Trust when I say that it will be of little comfort where you are going."
"I rather doubt that," said the human, managing a smirk despite the pain.  "Tell me, angel, what do they call you?"
"I am called Alphael."
"Well, that seems appropriate, since you'll be the first to die."
"I see that your sin is vainglory, for that while you managed to slay many of us with that ridiculous sword of yours, you are mortally wounded, and your comrades lay dead.  Prepare to die."
The man muttered a name and, though the angel could not hear it, it somehow sent chills through him.
"What?" he asked.
"I said that this sword, secreted from myth and history alike, the key to the ultimate plan, has a name.  I know the secret that even you have forgotten, for you, angels, are jotun, and this," he said, raising his sword, "is Fimbulvintersverð!"  The jotun prepared to strike, but the human swiftly smashed the pommel against a rock, and from it sprang forth the most bitter cold that Midgard has ever known.
The winged jotun attempted to fly away, but the cold and wind made it impossible.  In a panicked attempt, he dropped his sword, but he may as well have picked up a boulder for all the good that it did him.  The cold bit so bitterly that all that he could do was wrap his wings around himself as he huddled into a ball for what little warmth he could get.
"It was Loki who devised the plan.  Let you go long enough, and you'd start to believe your own lies.  Eventually, you would fulfill your own prophecies, which included raising the dead to fight amongst the living."  Winter spread past the horizon, and kept going.  "What could you have done more foolish?  Now, they have all died warriors' deaths!  The Aesir's army could not be any stronger, and it's all thanks to the jotun.  There is only one thing left to do now."  And with a gut-wrenching leap, the last man alive on Midgard leapt through the air with the last of his strength, felling the now-frail Alphael in one blow.  And there he died, too, though he was soon taken to Fólkvangr.  

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