Thor: Everyone, let’s drink heartily! To our future victories, cheers!
Thrud hid behind the door, eavesdropping on the conversation between her father and his comrades. Glass cups clinked one after another, the sound echoing through the room. Thrud looked at her father’s glass and was immediately attracted to the rippling golden-colored wine which looked like honey. Since all of them laughed heartily as they drank, Thrud became even more curious about what they were drinking.
The drinking party went on until midnight. Everyone was drunk, except Thor, who was still sober and drinking alone. Thrud sneaked out of her room, picked up one of the glasses on the table, and stealthily took a sip…
Young Thrud: Ugh! So bitter!
Thor: Thrud? Why aren’t you asleep?
Young Thrud: Father, this tastes bad…
Thor: Haha! You’re still too young to know what is so good about wine.
Young Thrud: Wine? What’s wine?
Thor: Wine is the most magical thing in the world. It allows people to forget their worries, tears, and other people’s deaths…
Young Thrud: Then, are you going to forget me? Please don’t!
Thor: Silly girl! I’ll never forget my own daughter.
Holding little Thrud in his arms, Thor told her about his adventures on the battlefield: how to start a fire in the snow, the strange outfit of Demons’ army, the sound of their ship sailing along the wind and waves, and the thrilling moments he and his comrades fought their way out of encirclement…
Every time Thor returned home, he came back with his brave comrades and bitter tears. Every glass of wine symbolized their blood, sweat, and memories. To them, drinking was a ritual to forget the deaths of their brave companions and death itself. But Thor always told Thrud only the good news and interesting stories.
However, Thrud clearly knew that her father endured intense pain. He always kept his suffering to himself and tried hard to put on a smiling face. Then, Thor recalled the time he discouraged the demonic dragons by striking lightning bolts at them with his hammer...
Young Thrud: Father? Father, are you asleep?
Young Thrud: My dear father… From now on, I’ll brew your favorite wine for you. I'm sure that will make you happy...
Thrud: Father, come taste the wine I brewed. I started the fermentation of these barrels of wine on the day you left.
Thor: Very nice wine!
Since Thrud's first sip of barley wine and understanding why her father liked drinking so much, she decided to start brewing wine so that her father could heartily feast on it when he returned. At first, the wine she brewed was bitter and coarse, but Thor always drank it with no complaint.
As time passed, Thrud mastered wine brewing skills; the wine she brewed was sweet and mellow. Unfortunately, things did not go her way. As the battle between the Northern Alliance and Demons became more intense, Thor rarely came home, leaving Thrud alone with the countless wine barrels.
She began to think: apart from brewing wine, what else could she do for her father? She racked her brains to figure out the answer but to no avail; and gradually, she developed a habit of drinking whenever she felt frustrated. Things did not change until one day Thor returned…
Warrior: Madam Thrud, you are becoming quite a master of wine brewing!
Thrud: Thank you. I’m glad everyone enjoys it.
Warrior: With such meticulousness, you could be qualified to be a valkyrie if you harness fighting techniques.
Thrud: Valkyrie? What is that?
Warrior: Oh, you have no knowledge of this. It is a frequently discussed topic these days!
The Pawn of Light: Odin will grant divine wine to the chosen valkyries, so that they could obtain power to fight off Demons alongside the Northern Alliance.
Thrud: Fight against Demons with the Northern Alliance… That means valkyries can go on expeditions with my father?
Warrior: Of course!
Thrud’s eyes immediately gleamed with joy as she heard the warrior's reply, since she knew what else she could do apart from brewing wine…
Thrud: In order to go on an expedition with father, I must strengthen my body…
Thrud: And after physical training, I need to familiarize myself with battle strategies by reading father’s strategic maps...…
Warrior: Madam Thrud, may the honor of valkyries fall upon you.
Thrud: Thank you for sending me to this bootcamp.
Under the nomination of Thrud’s comrade, Thrud successfully entered the bootcamp of the Northern Alliance. Her wisdom and talent in fighting enabled her to stand out among the royal princesses and female warriors. And finally, she was granted the divine wine in Asgard.
Thrud: ‘The taste of this wine… Can I brew it for father?’
Odin: Thrud, you have yet to comprehend the purpose of valkyries’ existence, but I am sure you will understand it in the future.
Thrud: ... Lord Odin, thank you for your bestowment.
Warrior: Lady Thrud, our scouts have just reported: there are no traces of any Demon in the forest. We should be able to pass through it safely.
Thrud: No. We will make a detour.
Warrior: But… if we make a detour, it will take an extra day for us to arrive at the battlefield… I am afraid by then, Lord Freyr would be…
Thrud: We must have faith in Lord Freyr. He can hold on a while longer.
Thrud: Meanwhile, if our troop are annihilated in the forest, we would not be able to provide any reinforcements at all.
The warrior could do nothing but comply with Thrud’s command and followed as the troop skirt around the forest. It was a difficult path as the soldiers soldiers were required to walk on a narrow road along the cliff edge, wade through weeds, and climb up rocks…
They swiftly arrived at the battlefield in a day, where Humans and Demons were fighting a fierce battle. Violently wielding his Sword of Victory, Freyr killed Demon soldiers one after another. The Demon general was shocked to see Thrud and the reinforcement troop arrive at the battlefield. He immediately asked his subordinate: “Isn't there a team hiding in the forest to ambush them?”
With a cold smile, Thrud quickly lifted her hammer and summoned a flow of Light elements which then struck the Demon general.
Freyr: Nice strike!
Thrud: Lord Freyr, Fa… Lord Thor is not coming?
Freyr: He’s detained at the glacier. Let’s talk about this later. Wipe out these bastards first!
Thrud: ‘My dear father, when can I see you again…’
After Thrud was formally selected as a valkyrie, she was appointed to lead a commando and was responsible for raiding Demons’ forts in the North. However, since Demons’ forts and colonies were scattered all over the realm, Thrud was forced to journey across the North. As both Thor and Thrud needed to move from place to place, they did not have a chance to meet.
That day, Thrud heard from soldiers’ report that Freyr needed military support. She immediately gathered not only soldiers in her commando, but also warriors of nearby camps. The more the better. Under her leadership, the army hurried to the battlefield as reinforcements for Freyr.
Thrud: ‘I have not seen father since I became a valkyrie. The chances of us meeting is even lower than when I was at home… ’
Thrud: ‘Maybe I should go home after this battle…’
Freyr: The honor of victory shall always belong to Vanir!
Thrud’s reinforcement turned the tides of the battle. The Demon army was overpowered by evening, leaving flickers of flame and dead bodies on the barren battlefield. All the warriors fell to the ground from exhaustion, while some of them sobbed and prayed for the heroic spirits. The only one who still looked lively was Freyr, who started sharpening his sword for the next battle.
Warrior: Lady Thrud, we avoided an ambush thanks to your decision. I should not have doubted you; I’m sorry.
Thrud: It was just a coincidence. Lord Freyr is definitely a better warrior than me, especially when it comes to the bravery in battles.
Joy behind Victory - Thrud: You should follow him from now on. I have to leave.
Thrud: Or you can return to our camp with the other warriors. I will explain everything to Lord Odin. Farewell.
Thrud left her commando on the battlefield without looking back. She wished to go to the glacier to help her father, but sadness filled her heart when she thought of her father embarking on another expedition soon.
Thrud: ‘I should first find a place to rest and then head to Asgard to submit my resignation from the army to Lord Odin.
As night fell, Thrud sped up her steps, hoping to get out of the wild faster. Her hammer was shimmering with Light elements. She soon arrived at a small village that was surrounded by withered plants and no trees stood. Just as she stepped into the village, she heard a woman’s scream of fear. She ran to the source of the sound, only to see a Demon soldier behead a woman with his sharp blade.
Thrud: How could this be… Darned Demons!
Thrud almost could not believe what happened before her eyes — she witnessed the death of an innocent woman. Her heart filled with rage as she was not only angry at the Demon soldier, but also at herself. She gathered all her strength and struck the Demon soldier with her hammer. Unable to dodge the powerful attack, the soldier was struck to death with his brains splattered across the ground.
Thrud: Darned Demons… Darned Demons! Why wasn't I able to save her life… I have brought shame upon my father's reputation…
Thrud: ...Leaves? There isn’t a single tree here. Why are there leaves on his body? Is he... one of the soldiers who was supposed to ambush us before?
A sense of fear gripped Thrud as this idea hit her. She recalled the recent battle and how the Demon army arranged an ambush in the forest. It was highly possible that the Demon soldiers of the ambush took advantage of the fierce battle and successfully fled. She just caught one of them; there were still many on the run…
While Thrud was contemplating over this matter, another scream interrupted her. Thrud ran to the scream's location, but only to witness a Demon soldier kill another innocent person. Again, she was too late.
Thrud: ‘They scatter all over the place and I do not even know the exact number. It is impossible for me to wipe them out alone…’
Thrud: ‘I am sorry, father. Your daughter is such an incapable…’
Then, another scream broke the silence again…
Thrud: Well, I guess I have no choice but to follow the screams.
Thrud: Why are you here?!
Again, Thrud hurried to the next location. To her surprise, the first group of people she saw was her companions — the team members of her commando! A few Demon soldiers lied dead on the ground, with some of their bodies trodden by the warriors of her team.
Warrior: I am sorry, Lady Thrud. We still want you as our leader, so we secretly followed you…
Warrior: Other teammates are also searching for the Demons. We will soon exterminate them all.
Thrud: No. I should be the one apologizing. My willfulness has let everyone down… And I cannot even save a few villagers…
Warrior: Lady Thrud, your concerns for the deceased and your self-reflection already prove that,
Warrior: Lord Odin has made the right decision of selecting you as a valkyrie.
Odin had said to Thrud before: “you have yet to comprehend the purpose of valkyries’ existence, but I am sure you will understand it in the future.”
Odin’s words echoed in Thrud’s head. She gazed at the hammer in her hand and then looked at the warriors of the commando. She finally realized that she was no longer the same — not only was she Thor’s daughter, but she was also a valkyrie of the Northern Alliance, who bore the responsibility of rescuing people in the realm.