fialleril: [the fires and the black river of loss whose other side is salvation] (everything I have ever learned)
[personal profile] fialleril
Title: the birds have all flown away
Characters: Nerthus (Freyr and Freyja's mother), implied Loki at the end
Rating: G
Word Count: 200
Summary: They call her a widow now, although her husband still lives.
Warnings: Background incest (Njord/Nerthus)
Notes: Companion piece to Numbered Among the Aesir

the birds have all flown away

Nerthus is called a widow now, although her husband still lives. She watches the sea, sometimes, and thinks of him, far away and lost to her more surely than any dead man. She has heard that Njord is called one of the most eligible men in Asgard. No doubt they will marry him soon.

A shadow crosses her face at the thought. She remembers far off days spent laughing in bed, and days further still spent chasing one another through the ripe barley, playing at adventure until their mother came to collect them for sleep. She misses her husband, and her brother perhaps more so. But she does not allow herself sorrow.

She keeps Freyja’s necklace, the one she left behind when she went to teach seid to the Aesir. She doesn’t wear it, but she takes it out sometimes and traces her fingers lightly over the glass beads. It’s an old necklace, a child’s necklace. She remembers giving it to her daughter, and Freyja’s childish glee – now she could look like Mother. Nerthus wonders how her daughter looks now.

She fingers the necklace and smiles her soft widow’s smile.

Outside, a falcon banks steeply and lands at her doorstep.



1. Freyr and Freyja's mother is never named in the myths. Nerthus is the name of a Germanic goddess recorded by Tacitus, and the name is linguistically related to Njord, making it a reasonable guess for a name in a Vanir brother-sister pair. Modern pagans usually take Nerthus as the name of Freyja and Freyr's mother.

2. Seid is a particular form of women's magic at which Freyja was an expert.

October 2012

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