Episode 29/Chapter 3: Idun’s commander (3)
Freya was stunned.
Her shock came from the fact that there was no change in Tae Ho’s face even though she’d approached him directly.
No, there was a change.
His look was one you’d wear after seeing something beautiful.
Tae Ho’s expression revealed as much. The face of someone who just spotted a beautiful person.
But it was a bit different. Should she relate it to an expression one held when viewing something beautiful in nature? It was obvious that Tae Ho hadn’t fallen head over heels for Freya.
Freya suppressed her bewilderment and focused on making her gaze even more coquettish. Again, Tae Ho faced her eyes, but he still didn’t fall over her beauty like a slobbering idiot.
‘Ah. Isn’t he impotent?’
Or he likes men.
However, Freya discarded that thought as her beauty didn’t only affect men but also women.
She was certain that the reason Idun’s warrior could be so calm in her presence was because he was thinking of another woman.
Freya laughed inwardly and then put on her usual, bright expression instead of a seductive one and spoke.
“Commander of Idun. I’m called Freya.”
“Idun’s warrior greets the Goddess of Magic and Beauty.”
Tae Ho had been educated about the Gods of Asgard by the Valkyries, Bracky, Siri, and others. As he called out the fields of Freya’s divinity, she put on a satisfied smile.
But it was then-
A shrill voice pierced through the air. A corner of the cozy room cracked to reveal plains behind it. The next second, the whole wall broke down to unveil a very familiar apple tree.
Two opposing domains became mixed in one spot; however, the plains couldn’t completely overtake the bedroom. Freya, who’d sat up on her bed, let out a sigh before speaking to the Goddess standing there.
“Hi. It’s been a while.”
“Just what are you doing?”
A really indignant voice.
Although her face was obscured by the light shrouding her, one could clearly feel the anger radiating off her.
Tae Ho was a bit frightened at her unfamiliar visage, but Freya merely waved her hands as if she’d expected it.
“Calm down, calm down. As the chief of the Valkyries, I just came here to compliment the warrior that had performed many great merits. I wasn’t planning on taking him or anything.”
Her words were as if addressing a kindly junior of hers.
Idun didn’t respond and only glared at Freya. The latter just shrugged.
“Well, it doesn’t even look like he’s interested in swapping legions. It really hurts my pride, you know.”
Of course, if Freya grew determined and went all out, the story may have changed, but as she had said, it wasn’t her intention.
It appeared that Idun had grown even more agitated at Freya’s words, as she walked to stand firmly between Tae Ho and the bewitching goddess. Her aura was like a cat’s whose hair had bristled.
Freya continued to smile as she slowly crawled toward the end of her bed to look at Idun and Tae Ho.
“Idun’s warrior, as your Goddess is so brusque, I’ll get straight to the point.”
Idun still didn’t say anything. As Tae Ho nodded behind her, Freya crossed her legs to show her sensual curves before continuing.
“You should already know, but I’m the chief of the Valkyries. I aid Odin, the King of Gods, in ruling over Valhalla.”
The one at the apex of Valhalla’s command was obviously Odin, but his next direct subordinate wasn’t Thor, but Freya.
Among other things, the rune growth system which was every warrior of Valhalla’s roots was created by her.
Although she’d collaborated heavily with Odin, no one could dispute the notion that she was the true creator of Valhalla.
“Idun’s commander, the achievements you’ve earned this time aren’t small. You must have already received praise from the Valkyries, but I came to this place because I wanted to compliment you directly. A great warrior deserves treatment suitable to their accomplishments.”
Freya’s beauty changed based on the situation, just like a fairy pitt.
At this moment, Freya’s beauty emanated a stark nobility and air of high standing.
After Frigg, Odin’s wife and Asgard’s landlady, died, Freya assumed her role as adminstrator of Asgard.
As a result, she was accustomed to the role of a queen and gave off a profound dignity alongside her usual brightness.
Freya stopped talking for a moment and flicked her eyes between Idun and Tae Ho. At that, anger appeared in Idun’s eyes for a moment, but she expertly regained her composure.
“Idun’s commander, while I was thinking of what reward to bestow you with, I heard something fun. After hearing, I knew exactly what to prepare. Apparently, you’re called the ‘Valkyrie Master’ by the warriors of Valhalla?”
Tae Ho was at a complete loss for words and couldn’t speak.
It may have been his imagination, but he felt a bit of resentment from Idun’s back.
Whatever the case, Freya laughed gracefully as if finding Tae Ho’s reaction amusing and then crossed her legs the other way.
“Extend your hands. I will bestow upon you something suitable for a Valkyrie master.”
At Freya’s words, Tae Ho extended his two hands and light seemed to condense in the air. A white, flawless horn appeared within them.
“It’s a Valkyrie Horn, something like the sibling of Gjallarhorn which Heimdal possesses. When you blow it once, the Valkyries nearby will gather at your side. This horn holds my decree as Valkyrie chief, so all those who gather will follow your orders without question.”
Originally, a superior-ranked warrior held higher authority than a Valkyrie, but that didn’t mean they could order them around.
Of course, if a superior rank became a commander of a legion, they could obviously give orders to the legion’s Valkyries, but it wasn’t that they could do the same to the Valkyries in other legions.
There were many cases of Valkyries following and respecting the orders of a legion’s commander, but strictly speaking, there weren’t obligated to follow the orders of a commander from another legion.
What Freya gave was an object that granted him the right to gather and order any Valkyries on a whim.
It was a reward that only the real Valkyrie master could grant.
Tae Ho suppressed his happiness and thanked her politely.
As Freya nodded lightly, Idun, who’d been staring, spoke up casually.
“Freya, you’re finished with your business, right?”
Her voice was still on guard even if it was less than before.
“Don’t rush me too much. After all, you’re in front of none other than your warrior.”
Idun’s mouth clamped shut at her words. Such was the integrity of honor between Gods. Regardless of how she’d meant her words, they were still true.
Actually, Tae Ho was really surprised about Idun’s behavior. Her actions, expressions, and words were quite different from her usual self.
“You really are being favored.”
“I’m always thankful.”
As Tae Ho gave a suitable answer immediately, Freya laughed and nodded. She turned towards Idun once more.
“Come closer. I will give you a blessing before the divine message ends.”
She was speaking to Tae Ho, but her eyes were directed at Idun. Tae Ho also turned to look at Idun.
Idun pressed her lips inside the light at the eyes of the two people and then stood to the side and opened a path.
Freya smiled cutely at her silent permission before switching her gaze to Tae Ho. He gulped dryly and then stood in front of Freya and lowered his posture.
“Raise your head.”
Tae Ho raised his head as Freya approached him. She arched her back to bless him on the forehead.
Suddenly, Freya turned to look at Idun with a malicious smile. She then blessed Tae Ho’s lips instead of his forehead.
“May my blessing accompany you.”
The time their lips touched was merely an instant; however, it was a really vivid and memorable one.
Tae Ho opened his eyes widely in surprise, and Idun exploded in anger.
“Let’s meet another time.”
Freya laughed and then waved her hand. Both Freya and the bedroom disappeared like a lie and the plains swept over the entire surrounding area.
It was a perfect hit and run.
After a few seconds had passed-
Tae Ho wasn’t happy even though he’d just been kissed by the Goddess of Beauty. No, he rather felt that he was faced with misfortune.
As Tae Ho struggled awkwardly, Idun took a deep breath and then spoke as if nothing had happened.
“Hmhm, my warrior Tae Ho. It’s good to see that you are healthy.”
She acted as usual but also felt incredibly uneasy.
“Um, me too.”
Tae Ho just made it worse. All of a sudden, Idun swooped down in front of Tae Ho and spoke urgently.
“Why are you like that? Did she use a strange magic on you? Is that it?”
Freya was the Goddess of Magic. Whatever Idun’s thoughts were, several warriors of various legions had indeed migrated to Freya’s while vying desperately for her love.
The light obscuring Idun’s face revealed traces of shock, worry, rage, and fear all at once.
Tae Ho peered at the light and then opened his mouth gradually.
“I was just wondering why you’re always hiding behind the light.”
It went without saying that their awkwardness was a result of the recent situation, but Tae Ho also hadn’t made his question up.
When he first faced Idun, he thought that all the Gods were like this.
But Thor was different. He could clearly see his face.
It wasn’t that weird until now since Tae Ho only had two references.
But after seeing Freya, he became certain that there was something strange. While Freya seemed to glow from her charm, there wasn’t any bright light on her like Idun.
Like Thor, she’d been clearly visible.
Idun flinched at Tae Ho’s words and then answered with a low voice.
“If….If you want to see what’s beyond the light, I can show it to you.”
Idun didn’t particularly wait for Tae Ho’s answer. As she finished speaking, she raised her right hand and touched her face. The light covering her face subsequently disappeared.
Beautiful, blond hair that seemed woven from countless strands of gold was revealed atop her translucent face.
However, he could only see half of her face. Across the rest, Idun wore a encompassing, black mask that contrasted her fair features.
Of course, it wasn’t that the mask covered her entire face, so he could still see her expression clearly. Her sharp chin and pretty lips were also clear.
“Hm, it seems like you are somewhat disappointed.”
As Idun spoke with a sulky voice, Tae Ho flinched and shook his head hurriedly. To be frank, he’d merely been baffled to see a mask appear under the light. Regardless of what he saw, Idun had still listened to his request. It wasn’t something he should be disappointed about.
Idun covered her mouth with her hand and laughed.
“I’m joking. Joking.”
Although she was wearing a mask, it was much easier to read her emotions and expressions than when she was hidden behind the light.
‘But what did she hide herself for in the first place?’
He couldn’t imagine any reason for it.
In addition, by looking at Idun’s movements, it didn’t seem like a normal mask. It was like a veil or a pair of sunglasses that the wearer could use to look from the inside.
While Tae Ho was pondering it, Idun looked up at the sky and pouted.
“My warrior, Tae Ho, it’s unfortunate, but I will have to return today.”
Of course, she hadn’t originally planned to send a divine message at all.
Tae Ho nodded and then lowered his posture like he did with Freya. Idun thought for a moment after seeing Tae Ho kneel, but she ended up blessing him on his forehead like always.
“May my blessing accompany you.”
Idun revealed a gentle smile and Tae Ho answered in kind. He then blinked and woke from his dream.
The number of warriors that’d remained behind in Valhalla to eradicate the remaining fomoires were exactly a hundred. This included Tae Ho’s group.
The number decided upon after guessing that it wasn’t a good influence for existences of Asgard to roam Midgard for longer than necessary.
Ingrid stayed back in Kalliv Castle with a few warriors.
It was to dissuade some neighboring countries from invading the now leaderless Kalliv Ahim.
It wasn’t that acceptable for the existences of Asgard to provoke to politics in Midgard, but it was only to prevent Kalliv Ahim from suffering any further damage.
It was a really irresponsible thing to step back saying that human affairs should be handled among themselves.
Tae Ho split up some forces with Rasgrid as she had the most leadership experience out of the Valkyries who’d remained behind.
It was also to exterminate the few fomoires that were left effectively.
And a month later-
As the mopping up of the fomoires was ending, a change occurred.
The smoke coming from the fragments of Garmr’s soul that Ingrid had stored away started to blow in a specific direction.
Valhalla showed an immediate reaction, as this phenomenon had already happened in the first expedition in Midgard.
Tae Ho and Rasgrid received a heavenly order and paused the cleanup of the remaining fomoires to make haste towards another location.
They rushed to where Ingrid and the soul fragments were at.
The Giant of Earth, Balgad, didn’t personally witness the battle that occurred in Kalliv Castle, but he knew what happened.
The Giant of the Night, Avalt, thought of the Giant of Strength, Harad, at the last moments of Bress the Tyrant’s life.
The one that had slain the Giant of Strength was Thor; however, Avalt remembered what Harad was trying to do before he died. He tried to kill the high-named Ragnar Lodbrok and the warrior of Idun that wasn’t even at the intermediate rank.
It was then that he’d thought that Idun’s warrior may very well become a great enemy for the Magician King one day.
The day of Bress’ death, Avalt was able to confirm his belief.
Idun’s warrior was dangerous. There was a dire need to sever the roots before the flower bloomed entirely.
The Giant of the Night, Avalt, opened his eyes in the darkness. At that moment, there was a voice that called out to him like an illusion.
The Giant of Earth, Balgad.
It was him.
The Magician King, Utgard Loki, sat upon his throne and looked off to a distant place. He rolled his fingers across his armrest and sent out two streams of his magic carrying orders.
One was sent to the front lines and the other to Midgard.
The magician king took a deep breath. He felt like the old wound in his shoulder by the Prince of Light, Cuchulainn, was itching.
A hundred years since the Great War.
Soon,, the time to stand on the battlefield would come again.
The Gods on par with Thor couldn’t enter through the Great Barrier. The possibility of their immense power influencing the barrier was too high.
Loki was certainly a strong existence; however, he was the God of Lies and could portray his level of strength however he wished.
Loki was now inside the Great Barrier. He, who stood in a place cast in shadow, was glaring at the sky like a statue. Far above, a flock of crows were traveling through the air.
Loki took his eyes off the flock. He analyzed the message of the Magician King that had grown faint after having passed through several territories.
“Let everything happen as the King wishes.”
Loki mumbled in a low voice before moving with vigor.
The biggest country of humans in Midgard, Ironside, was now his target.
< Episode 29 – Idun’s commander (3) > End
TL note: Thanks for reading~