“The sea is angry, Lord,” my second in command muttered.
I agreed with his assessment, “the ships are strong, the men are ready.”
In the early hours of our 40th day at sea, we had no choice but to enter the storm. Ominous clouds expanded across the whole horizon. No way round, only through.
I’ve spent half my life at sea. I’ve seen angry swells and vicious white caps, but nothing like this. Njord must have disagreed with Odin on our journey, and he was doing his damnedest to stop us.
I gave the order to leave the sail up. Our armada was losing ships fast, and I would rather risk a couple more than face certain death of all my men. If the sail was down, we would be relying solely on man power. Viking or not, no man could power through these seas. The wind to our advantage, some damage was acceptable. We could get out of this mess faster with the power of the sea behind us.
For 3 days and 3 nights we fought the storm. Never in my life had a seen a storm last through the following day. We could not see the sun, nor birds or any sea dwelling mammal. Constant rain and wind became our chanting tune. With our armada dwindling, something had to change. Something had to release us from this salt-drenched fury. A rogue wave appeared on our starboard side…
“Og það er það síðasta sem ég man eftir. Hvar eru menn mínir!” (“And that, is the last thing I remember. Where are my men!”) I shouted ferociously.
“Keep this man chained, I’ll have more questions soon. Get the priest! We need a translator for this, thing.” King Edward scolded.
I spent several days tied to a cage, hanging just high enough from the ground so I couldn’t stand. I had no idea what had happened to my men. Had they survived, or drowned. Were they tied to cages? Or plotting my rescue? It killed me inside not to know. Why had Odin betrayed us so? We were on his path of glory. The Wise One blessed our journey. I had so many questions, with no one to answer them.