Since she became aware, Urd had followed her father through his drift in the realm of Humans, far from their home. Urd, held her younger sister’s hand as she walked behind her father, who was still carrying his swaddling clothes. They wandered in the war-ravaged realm. Little Urd asked her father the reason of their travels. He patted her head:
Father: Because your father does not want to be numb.
Father: And they want me to understand,
: so they exiled me and let me experience this realm in person.
Listening to her father, Urd only nodded. At the time, she was still familiarizing with the changes. Urd was stupefied by the life in heaven. Therefore, all in the realm of Humans interested her. She felt intrigued but did not have the courage to leave her father’s side.
Father: Don’t be afraid. Relax and learn. From now on, we are staying in this realm.
Every time they passed a place, Urd’s father would tell her its history, as if he had deep feeling towards every inch of the land. However, no matter how nice they were treated, her father never planned to stay. Urd once wondered: if they did so reluctantly, why did they have to leave at all, rather than staying at a place.
Father: No, we cannot settle. This is my punishment.
: But, father, why do you have to punish yourself?
Hearing her words of caring, her father hugged Urd for her and expressed sentiments she, as a child, could not understand:
Father: You are right, my little princess. You have looked right through me...
Father: Because I remained non-interventionist, my heart now aches.
Father: But if I try hard now, not only can I not help but rather, I would spread pain...
Urd looked after her sisters along with her father. Witnessing her father’s intentional distancing from all, Urd subconsciously imitated him. However, Urd was not hiding from anything, but instead, aimed to gain knowledge in an objective manner; this way, she could understand what the world was to her father.
Even though their roaming was aimless, Urd proceeded with her father, gradually away from war zones.
Mimir: These werewolves are simply controlled by Demons.
Mimir: There is no need to harm them.
Mimir: We are near the town. Stall them and they will retreat.
Later, they reached the edge of the war zones. There stood a Northern city unaffected by the wars. Deserted soldiers and refugees occupied in every corner of the city. Urd and her father searched for vacancies in almost every inn but failed; this had forced them to seek stables as an alternative, but even that was unsuccessful. They could only sit in a table of a messy inn and rest on the half-crooked chairs. Urd, till today, remembers the song sung by drunk men, the song that finally changed her father.
Dejected Drunk Man: ‘Gods’ gardens filled with chirps; our lands filled with wars.’
Dreamy Drunk Man: ‘Gods enjoy relish on the rainbow; we lie dead under the bridge.’
Excited Drunk Man: ‘Gods’ wives are holy angels; our wives are evil demons.’
Urd’s always-calm father was triggered by the words of the drunk men and started giggling strangely. The second sister saw her father’s weird face and laughed, while Urd was scared by it. Their youngest sister was frightened and even started crying.
From then on, their father had an aim. He proactively communicated with leaders in the North and warned them of the wars’ trends. Urd, in her childhood, thought that her father finally seemed reinvigorated. However, she later understood that he was succumbing to reality and decided to live like a Human.
Unfortunately, the clans showed no trust to Urd’s father. They received him for his information, but none agreed to his requests.
: Why would they ask us for information,
: but refuse to send patrols on reconnaissance?
Mimir: Northern clans are now in a balance.
: You cannot blame them for withholding their forces.
: Won’t they be worried?
Mimir: They are too concerned with the present.
: Hence, they have forgotten the future.
Nevertheless, the clans promised to let Urd’s family stay in the North. The head of the Aesir clan admired her father’s knowledge. He built a hut for him on infertile soil, giving him an accommodation; so, he could teach the clansmen as a savant...
Mimir: Seek the source of water on the deserted land.
: Direct the water elements at a correct position.
Urd sat under a tree by the lake, observing representatives of different clans argue at the entrance of her house. They gathered in the square between the house and the garden.
At first, few came and learnt from her father. However, when wars approached from the South, people came asking varying questions hoping to ease their mind. Urd’s father then advised them to group into an alliance. Nevertheless, the clans argued about who would lead. The fight continued for days and Urd lost her interest in feeding her swans.
Mimir: Urd, do not speak like that.
The passing by Mimir, holding his map and books, was going to join the people when he heard her daughter. Urd was puzzled and asked him.
Urd: I was right.
Urd: They worship abstract values and pretend to be part of the great endeavor.
Urd: But they could only end up living and dying ordinarily,
Urd: just like beasts who can talk.
Mimir: But they are happy, Urd.
Mimir: Happy beasts are still beasts, but happy Humans are not just Humans.
Urd: I do not understand. The way they behave, do you call that happy?
Mimir: Of course not. They refuse to follow one another to avoid future unhappiness.
Urd: Should they not value the alliance more? Why are they so silly?
Mimir: Sentiments cause obsession, but they experience more pleasure with them —
Urd: But also more sadness and hatred. You have told me this before.
Mimir: Right. Hence Gods are not superior. Compared to Humans, we cold Gods —
Urd: It is “they cold Gods”, father.
Urd said, frowning. Mimir forced a smile and shook his head, saying:
Mimir: Right. It is “they”.
Urd looked at her father as he approached the crowd. Just then, a voice came from the tree. Urd’s second sister hung upside down on a branch and mimicked her word with a smile.
Urd wanted to scold her sister. However, hearing her own words through Verthandi, she felt regret within her. Urd turned to look at the crowd again. They settled down and listened closely to her father. She recalled her father’s defiance in heaven; but now, he was content with teaching Humans. She felt an urge to repeat the words in her heart.
Urd: ‘Right...all are idiots.’
: Urd, what are you thinking about?
: Nothing. Let’s keep working.
: Let us tend to father’s last possessions and tame the power of sorrow.
Odin pierced his gungnir through the armor’s crack, releasing the soul inside the Armor of Runes. He picked up the armor which once belonged to Mimir. Odin touched and felt the armor forged by Gods with the power of ancient Humans. Before wearing the armor, Odin asked Urd with his eyes.
: You should have known that I never stop anything from happening.
Odin: You said you never prophesy.
Odin: It’s just because you never utter a word and participate in anything.
: I once mentioned. I am waiting for you to act.
Odin: You can’t always be a bystander.
: Right. Therefore I would help you become part of history.
Odin smiled to Urd. Now she remembered; in the past, Odin always showed his straight face. His smile now meant he thought he found the key to peace...hence, Urd stopped smiling.
: You will suffer, Odin.
Odin: I know. Mimir told me before. But my will shall never waver.
Therefore, Odin received his painful ending. To seal the Dragon of Poison, Odin was consumed by the power of Gods. He then asked the Valkyries, including Urd, to seal his berserk self...
: Thank You.
: Shall I kill you?
: No. I shall live forever in the seal as a warning to others.
: You would prefer this?
: At least I still do not wish to give up.
: Odin, you do not have to do this.
: Do you know what lies ahead of you?
: I do. As Mimir and you have mentioned.
: I will be imprisoned in the tower forever, to be condemned by all spirits.
Gods are immortal because their power keep death away. However, their offsprings are not born with their power. They have to immerse prolongedly in the power of Gods to possess it. Then they will receive the complete power from their parents. Yet, if their power is exhausted, their body perish.
Mimir did not merely give his power to his daughters, but also channeled it into their weapons. He also told Odin of the Armor’s whereabouts. People eulogized his sacrifice for peace. But only Urd knew that Mimir had intended his own death.
: He nurtured Odin to fulfill his wishes.
: He looked for a successor of his will, like a Human would.
: Father knew of the result. He knew that history repeats itself.
: Heroes and sages will always be forgotten...
: But he insisted and, in this way, became one of the Humans.