In Search of Frigga's Soul

Recorded: December 27, 2013
Characters: Balder, Heimdall (NPC), Leggith (NPC), Loki, Thor, Frigga
Location: Jotunheim
Summary: The sons of Odin head to Jotunheim to further investigate their mother's disappearance.

The Bifrost lets Balder off at the edge of a field of ice and snow, a distance away from the craggy mountains of Jotunheim. The clouded sky would make this land impossibly dim if not for the snow's constant reflection of what little light there is. The main source of light in the area comes from the midst of the unnatural cyclone that keeps its contents well concealed by churning up the icy landscape around it. The cyclone itself is a powerful wall of magic that will not allow itself to be bypassed, even by teleportation. In the midst of the dimly lit cyclone, a female figure can be made out in the distance.

Loki doesn't need to wear special clothes to travel to Jotunheim, but he holds up a hand to make sure nobody goes running off before he casts an illusion to make them look like proper mostly naked Jotuns. Keeping one hand near his dagger, Loki narrows his eyes at the female in the distance. "I suspect that is where we need to go first."

Balder trudged several steps ahead. He chewed the inside of his cheek for a moment in silent thought. "I suppose you're right," Balder agreed. Each step was a labor in the snow. He made his way slowly towards the woman and the cyclone concealing any detail about her.

The brothers will find themselves already at the edge of the storm. Its edge acts as a wall preventing any forward movement, although every once in a while a spark of light glides through the snowy windstorm and joins the accumulation in the eye of the storm. The wind in the area is nearly deafening, but as they grow accustomed to it, they will hear the sound of shouted chanting coming from somewhere nearby, outside of the barrier.

"She's casting a spell." Loki says in a low Jotun voice, narrowing his blood red eyes. Being in disguise will allow them some recon time rather than being detected and jumped on right away. Loki's eyes are already looking around to see what he can use to break through the wind barrier. "We're going to have to make a jump through the barrier, or find a way to disrupt it."

Balder stood, then. His eyes darted about, focusing on nothing in particular… But he was picking out that chanting, and started in the direction, skirting the edge of the swirling storm. "You hear that chanting?" He waved for Loki to follow. "Perhaps the interruption of that chant is the only interruption we need to get inside." His left hand fell to the scabbard of his sword and he thumbed the hilt forward, only readying it in case that interruption needed to be violent.

"Eht wons rehtom sesira… Eht wons rehtom sesira…" The voice of the chanter should become more familiar to Loki in particular as they move closer to the source. Leggith stands on a jagged stone of ice that has been carved with stairs and a flat top. The Giantess wears the same rags as she did when she attacked the palace, only she has added a few pieces of Frost Giant opulence: Bones and strips of leather that arranged in a ceremonial neckpiece, and a headdress made of giant snow owl feathers. She is chanting from an altar with blue flames casting light on several ripped pages laying in front of her. If the Asgardians attempt to approach the altar, they will find another invisible barrier prevents her ceremony from being interrupted. This one will react violently to any attempts to touch it.

"Allow me to make a sufficient distraction, then, brother." Loki says with a devious smirk. He doesn't give Balder a chance to answer before he seems to disappear, then reappear running toward the maelstrom. In the distance, it looks like a herd of Asgardians are heading right toward them. "Asgardians are approaching! We are under attack!" he leaves the illusion of his giant self there while his regular small self tries to penetrate the invisible barrier, able to sense it but not see exactly where it is. It is his hope that there is enough confusion that they won't get captured just yet.

Balder turned. He could feel, deep down in his very soul, that Loki was about to expose them. "Loki!" he yelled, hand outstretched. It was too late, however, and Balder turned back to the witch. He let Loki worry with whatever magic was going on. "Stop this madness!" he tried to yell over the howling winds.

Leggith stops her chanting and turns to watch this crowd of illusionary Asgardians rush into the cyclone and dissipate. She chuckles to herself from behind her barrier and calls out to no one in particular, "(Is that you, Mutt Prince? I had hoped you would be here to witness this.)" Speaking in her native tongue, the gravel-voiced shaman has a much more intelligent speaking voice than her attempt to talk in Asgardian. "(Have you also brought a friend, or friends? Good. Borgeth commanded that I prepare our tribute alone, but I prefer to have witnesses to my success.)" Neither barriers seem ready to give despite the current attempts to make them yield.

Loki growls and thrusts his hands out, bombarding the barrier with all the magic he can muster, even the blackest magic from his darkest depths. "Yes, the Asgardian army is here and prepared to lay siege to the entire realm until our queen is found." He keeps conjuring illusions of the building army of guards, hoping Balder will find a way to jump in while he keeps her distracted.

Balder pushed his sword back into the scabbard. He turns to watch Loki, a single hand on his hip and the corners of his lips pursed. Balder can't particularly see the barrier, much less any openings there might be. The warrior just thumbs behind himself at the witch, "Sorry, brother. Sounds like a bunch of stuff you need to talk about."

The scene on Jotunheim is a strange one. Stranger than usual. The Asgardian brothers have landed in the middle of nowhere, in a wide field of ice and snow which has purposefully been occupied by a cyclone of impenetrable magic. No other Jotun seems to be around except for Leggith, the shaman witch who stands on an ice rock altar on the outer edge of barrier. Her own platform is surrounded by an invisible barrier that would violently react if someone attempted to attack it. Loki's own magic is being thrust in different directions.

A single point of light flares to life in the distance and slices across the air like a falling star. The ball of fire spews out a wake of smoke and thunderous hatred as a stormfront trails in its wake. The path it carves, at this point, is clear: Leggith and the platform that supports her.

Thor becomes visible for a moment as the fire peels from his form and he slams a calamitous scar through the frozen tundra and annihilating the platform, sending a shower of stone tumbling down as the primitive altar collapses. Though he has found himself unable to control the storm, his voice still manages to roar across the sky and explode across the plain with deafening force. "Charge the ruin and seize her!"

Loki's roll is effectively slowed when Thor comes barreling into the platform, turning to look just in time as the ground disappears out from under him. He flails his arms and legs, trying to grab onto something as he yells in surprise, disappearing with the rest of the debris. Fortunately, he's small, and doesn't get crushed when the rock falls, simply trapped between a trio of frozen chunks. "Dammit, Thor!" he growls, bringing his legs up to his chest and trying to push one of the stones away from him, holding one hand up and illuminating the dark space with magic.

Balder took a few steps forward, stepping high over the snow that reached to his knees. Each step became higher until he leapt several feet, then several meters, until he landed where the altar once stood. His sword is drawn, now, and his head swivels constantly, looking for their target. "Come out, witch!" He called, expecting no answer. He even recognized there was a good chance she met her demise at the hands of the Asgarden Tiller.

The window for bragging rights is quickly closed for the Jotun witch, for as she fixed her mouth to spout more words of hate to the Asgardians, the God of Thunder made his entrance. The barrier protects her from the impact but as the platform falls, so does she, and the Giantess is quickly lost beneath the rubble of the altar. It is very timely, then, that the cyclone in the midst of the field begins to weaken. The wind dies down and the light in the center of the field fades away. The snow and frost still make it hard to see more than a few inches forward but with the disappearance of the Jotun witch, it all seems to be settling. What's more, the figure of the woman can still be vaguely made out in the distance.

A torrent of lightning rushes from Thor at a single swipe of Mjolnir, colliding with the rubble with an explosive crack and sending a significant portion of the stone shooting away. The condition of the storm, however, steals his attention from the search and he turns to stomp a path through the heavy snow towards the cyclone. "I do not feel remorse for you failing to realize you can teleport." He growls to Loki as a seeming afterthought.

"Shut up!" comes a voice from beneath the rubble, then a flare of magic as he blows his way out so he can see where he is. Teleporting to Thor's side, he pats his ruffled hair down and growls, "It's not MY fault you're always late and come rushing in like a rabid bilgesnipe to make a mess of things."

Balder scowled at the absence of the witch. He waited a moment longer before taking several leaps by using the rubble as stepping stones. Once at the last stone, he pauses to survey the cyclone. Balder takes a few more leaps, both feet funding purchase a many inches below the snow's surface, until he's caught up with his brothers. He keeps his distance, however, several feet behind them, and off to one side.

The frost and snow settles as the quiet sets in, creating a clear path to the figure in the middle of the field. The woman is tall like a Frost Giantess, but her clothes are far more royal in appearance: An ice blue gown with white fur trim and diamonds that sparkle in patterns down her sleeves. Her hair is long and white, kept out of her face by a crown of silver with a single sapphire opal pressed firmly in its center. The very snow that continuously wafts around her body seems to come from her hair.

As the brothers come close enough to view the woman fully, her true identity would become known. Though her stature tall, skin a pale blue and brow downturned in a subtle frown, the All-Mother's facial features cannot be mistaken. Even her gaze keeps its regal bearing as her eyelids open to reveal the blood red color native to the Frost Giants' heritage. Frigga, the All-Mother of Asgard, now stands in the unmistakable form of a Frost Giant.

"What…mockery is this?!" Thor roars, his great crimson cloak beginning to flutter as he rises into the air. He turns from Frigga to scrutinize the surrounding area. "Seize the witch! Where did she go?"

"That…appears to be our queen." Loki says, stunned. He takes a few steps forward, allowing himself to turn blue again. "My queen, we have come to speak with you, if you will grant us an audience." he says, lowering his red eyes as he would any other queen. "Please forgive our hostile intrusion, we knew not your current state."

Balder remained in the open, surveying. His eyes cut to Loki and he gives a little shake of his head, but says nothing. Seeing nothing in the icy white landscape, Balder turns and begins walking back to the rubble to search for the witch. He wants no part in the Jotun mockery of his mother.

The words from the brothers causes a stir in the All-Mother and her gaze focuses on their location. "Asgardians. In my realm. How dare you." She extends her left arm forward and sends a trail of spikes shooting upwards from where she stands in a direct path to Loki, meaning to impale him if he does not move. With her right hand, she flicks two fingers in Thor's direction and shards of ice rush at him on the wind, ready to cut him and his armor to pieces. Balder has done himself a temporary service by staying at a distance but as he searches the altar's rubble, he will find no trace of Leggith.

Mjolnir spins in a swift circle before Thor, destroying the shards of ice before they can destroy the prince. Loki earns the most weary of glares as the thunderous voice calls down from the heavens. "We need to disable her! Heimdall, send a runner to the Allfather! Tell him what happened!"

Loki takes a deep breath and allows some of those shards to hit him and drops to the ground dramatically. Loki really should get an Oscar someday. It is a bit of a test to see if there is ANYTHING inside of that Jotun that resembles Frigga. He lifts a blue hand to her, putting on his best pathetic voice. "M…mother?" the Jotun version of Loki asks while an illusory version of himself stands off to the side, laughing at her inability to hit him.

Balder turned back with all the commotion. Upon seeing the Jotun doppelganger of his mother attacking his brothers, he would spring into action and take several large leaps back into the action, sword still drawn and held at the ready. Each landing cleared several feet of snow around him, then he leapt again and again until one last leap would have him pouncing on the Jotun Frigga. He announced himself in the air, however, with a yell fit for an Asgardian warrior. He simply wanted her attention.

"Your feigned weakness is far from helpful!" Thor bellows, swinging his hammer towards Frigga to send himself hurtling towards her, a wrathful cry filling his lungs as he closes the distance.

Frigga rests her arms at her sides as she studies at Loki's true form. "I know you," she states in a calm tone, her words carrying on a magical echo. "You are the cursed, bastard runt of my king, Laufey." She raises one arm and a chunk of ice dislodges itself from the field behind her. It careens into Balder just as he comes forward and expertly thrusts him on a collision course for Thor. While the brothers are pitched aside so casually, the All-Mother takes several dangerous strides in Loki's true direction. Unlike other Jotuns or Asgardians, the sorceress is not so easily fooled by the very illusion magic she taught her adopted son to use. "I am not your mother, whelp. I am Fanndis, the Snow-Mother of Jotunheim." Her hair spreads behind her, creating a cone of snow that whips forward to strike Loki in the chest. "I will put an end to your sniveling existence, then bear my king a legion of sons he can be proud of."

Balder careened into Thor and he grabbed the neck of his chest armor, "Grab Loki," he yelled! It wouldn't make much sense until Balder's sword grew blindingly white and the pair were teleported, still moving through the air with that same momentum. Loki would be in arm's reach for Thor. If successful, the brothers would go for a third teleportation that placed them several hundred meters above Jotunheim. The momentum died and they hung in the air for a quiet moment. "Heimdall!" Balder yelled as loudly as he could. His sword was thrust upwards, though for no real reason at all. He was just deeply praying that this wasn't the one time Heimdall wasn't paying attention.

Opportunity is seized as is Loki's hair as the pile of Odinson rushes past the trickster God. Thor clutches firmly as the trio appear in the skies of Jotunnheim. "Now, Heimdall! Now!"

Looking up with a grin, the trickster says, "Thank you for the information, Snow-Mother. We—URK!" Loki then yells profanity in Old Norse as he's seized by the hair, scrabbling to grab Thor's hand and arm properly.

It is fortunate that the brothers are fleeing, for the Snow-Mother lifts her arms in preparation for another attack. Several more chunks of ice are hurled in their direction and one that seems ready to make its mark sails past the glowing trail left by the Bifrost's retrieval. All three Asgardians are dumped into the observatory and Heimdall stands over their pile with a calm gaze. "That did not appear to go so well."

Balder was finally laying on the floor of the chamber, sword still thrust upward. He sighed and let his arm fall, blade clanging against the stone. "Not well at all, Heimdall." Balder just continued to lay.

Thor shows no signs of movement. His grip on Loki's hair, as well, is as steadfast as it had been. "When I let go of your hair you need to study that casting I had brought to your quarters, Loki." He grunts.

Loki pulls shards of ice out of his chest and throws them to the ground with an annoyed grumble. "When you let go of my hair, you had better hope I don't run you through with my own dagger. Now let go!"

Heimdall leans forward and offers a hand to lift Balder to his feet. "It would seem that the Jotun witch has corrupted the All-Mother. This situation is beyond grave. If they were to march on Asgard with her power at their disposal…"

Balder sits up and shoves his sword back into its scabbard. "Well then. Our mother is an ice giant. I would like to have spoken with the witch to discern a motive… But I guess coming away with nothing is just as good, yes?" He moves to stand, taking Heimdall's hand. "Study what you need to study, Loki." He brushes snow off his clothes. "You have some blanks to fill in."

"Do you have a dagger? I thought you fought by weeping like a maiden." Thor snarls, clenching his fists and gathering himself to his feet. Hair is still firmly gripped in his palm. "We need to move swiftly. The jotunn I spoke with told me their motive: revenge. Revenge for the loss of Loki. The power mother wields was secondary."

Loki stifles a yelp as he's dragged to his feet by his hair. "Thank you both for your concern," he grunts, trying to pry himself free from Thor. "I will go study the casting and see what I can find. Let go of my hair!"

Heimdall bows his head, his celestial visage dimming in his helmet. "She did mention bearing Laufey new sons. We are honorbound to spare the All-Mother that shame." The galaxy of his gaze brightens as he focuses on Loki. "No offense." Then he returns to his post, turning only to look at all three brothers at the same time. "What will you have me do?"

"None taken." The dark haired Jotun prince grumbles.

Balder took a step towards Heimdall. "Keep your eyes on Jotunheim, I think. Make sure the All-Mother remains unharmed and perhaps try to find the witch. We still have questions for her."

A few strands of greasy hair are brushed from his palms as Thor marches towards the door. "I will explain the situation to father. We can save her though. We must. Loki, your study will be of the utmost importance. Balder, I have a jotunn still in the prison. I want you to see if you can get more out of him than I did."

Loki flattens out his hair with a scowl. "Oh, so I don't get the opportunity to interrogate the Jotun that attempted to murder me, just you two muscle bound idiots? I see how it is. Well," he says, smoothing down his armor, ignoring the blood from the wounds already healing from the ice. "while you two are flexing about like a couple of buffoons, I will be using my brain." and with that , he begins stomping off toward his chambers.

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