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- A VIKING FAIRY TALE - PART 4 -
"Weíll take the village," the chief shouted to Knud, "you and the slaves can take the monastery. Thatís a job for you."
Knud felt strange. He was proud to get that task and yet he was also afraid to kill. It wasnít just something you did.
He found himself in front of a locked door. The monks had obviously seen them arrive.
"Thor, help me!" he cried and hit the lock with his sword. Nothing happened. "Where are Thorís powers?" he thought. "The sword is dedicated to him. He is the god of victory. Odin is the god of wisdom and riches. The only one left was the god of war, Tyr. He hit the lock again and shouted "Tyr!" The lock broke. Whether it was Tyrís power or his own anger that helped, he didnít know.
He ran in to the monastery with his sword held high. The gods had to help him.
Suddenly he noticed a figure hanging on the wall. He was like a god, with a crown on his head and scars on his hands and feet. There was also a scar near his heart.
Knud was sure it must have been evil people who caused the death of this god. Knud got angry at himself for thinking like this. It was only a figure made of wood hanging on a wall. With a strong grip he swung the sword towards the figure. At that moment he heard a powerful crack and the sword was torn from his hand.
He looked at the sword, then he looked at the figure on the wall and saw there were tears near the eyes. Was he dreaming? No, it was real. Was he face to face with a god that was stronger than his childhood gods?
They had left on a Wednesday, Odinís Day, and crossed the ocean on a Thursday, Thorís day. They had done everything as they were supposed to, so what was this?
He noticed the altar where a frightened monk was standing watching him. Knud left the sword lying on the ground. He was afraid to pick it up.
"What do you want, stranger?" asked the monk. "To win victories and conquer gold," said Knud. "I recommend wisdom. It is better than gold", added the monk.
Knud didnít understand. Was there a wisdom better than Odinís, the god of wisdom?
"What do you mean?" Knud was curious.
"The heart is stronger than the sword. That is what happened to you when you lost the sword. You are standing on soil that is dedicated to the one with the bleeding heart," the monk said with authority. Knud felt helpless. His Viking courage had left him.
The monk was talking about the man on the wall, about his doings on earth, his death and resurrection. "Stronger than death," Knud repeated to himself. "Then he must be stronger than all the gods I know.
"What about the sword," he said. "Youíll get it back but first it will be dedicated to another god. Bring it and I will bless it with holy water.
Knud walked slowly to the sword and picked it up with trembling hands. He then quickly walked back to the monk and handed it to him.
"Look, Iíll dedicate it to the god on the wall, the King of Heaven," said the monk. "And whoever holds it will belong to him."
Knud wanted to say no, but he couldnít. The new god was stronger.