Concerning Vikings

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Original Source Zarous' Webpage

One day, long ago, Tokugawa, Jaator, Daris, and Zarous in a smaller but somehow not kinder age, were confabulating of things they had seen that day in the relm, over some ale in the Loth Lorien Inn.

Jaator: "Elrandir and Rigel let me fight with them today. I learned much from their expert skills, although, they dont move quickly enough..."

Daris laughed raucously: "Coming from anyone else I would rebut that brazen comment"

The group at the table laughed, Jaator is well known, even abroad to have the lightning speed of a mongoose in battle.

Zarous: "Yeah I dont know how many times I've stopped to adjust my pouch, look up, there's Jaator over a pile of corpses down the road say'n 'Hurry it up slowpoke!' "

Tokugawa noded knowingly and chuckled as Jaator looked sheepish.

Nevyn the bard radiated into the Inn just then. Old and wise from a lifetime on the road, to this day, has not dispirited him from caroling across the land. The innkeeper cleared a place at a long counter for the minstrel.

While our band of young travellers swapped lies and braggadocio, Nevyn put down his bedroll an bag and began to play... Nevyn said, 'I'm a Elfrida the Landless.' He strumed his lute and sang:

'Oh, I come from Scandanavia with my helm upon my head,' 'And I won't be going home again 'till all of you are dead!'

From the very first bar... Zarous was transfixed.

The group bantered and Tokugawa pushed at Zarous playfully: "Dont you think so mage?... Zarous?" But it was as if the song had snapped something inside the young mage... He was possesed by the muse and aspirations of the sounds.

'I'm a Viking! For that's the thing to be!' 'There's no greater joy than fighting for a berserker like me!'

'Oh, we had a raid the other night when everything was still' 'We waited until moonrise and came shrieking down the hill!' 'The blood was pouring down the streets, the women ran and screamed;' 'It was better fun than anyone could possibly have dreamed!'

Jaator moved his head between Zarous and the bard: "Hey, Zarous, snap out of it..." But The mage sat there and stared right through him as if he wasn't there.

Daris: "Maybe hes possesed?"

Tokugawa chuckled: "How would we tell the difference anyway?"

'I'm a Viking! For that's the thing to be!' 'There's no greater joy than fighting for a berserker like me!'

'The loot we loaded on the ships was too great to be told' 'The slaves we towed behind on rafts, for ballast we had gold!' 'We took home herds of cows and pigs, we took home chests of jewels' 'Why should we work, when we can loot from futile, puny fools?'

'I'm a Viking! For that's the thing to be!' 'There's no greater joy than fighting for a berserker like me!'

'Oh, we're hairy-chested fighters and we have no time for games' 'What we don't take back home with us we leave behind in flames' 'And if you see a Viking ship, there's nothing you can do' 'Just kiss your wife, and cross yourself, and bid the world adieu!'

'I'm a Viking! For that's the thing to be!' 'There's no greater joy than fighting for a berserker like me!'

Nevyn bowed: 'Thank ye!'

As Nevyns lute quieted at the end of the Ballad, Zarous lept onto the table, donned an ancient horned helmet from the rafters and excalimed: "I'm a Viking for thats the thing to be!!"

The group, half looped from much ale lept to the adjoining tables, raised their mugs and exclaimed: "I'm a Viking for thats the thing to be!!"

Then Zarous unsheathed his longsword and leapt at the patrons... obviously intent on reducing them to tiny bits... Tokugawa dropped his mug and grabbed for a rope: "Hes a fruitcake! jump him!!"

Daris, Jaator and Tokugawa dived at Zarous.

Fortunately for the patrons, Zarous was a bit looped too, they easily dodged his wild and agitated state. Jaators reflexes took over, he smartly rapped Zarous on the head with his mace... bending the helmets regal ornamentation into a twisty propeller shape which squeaked as it spun and Zarous fell to the floor.

Daris took the longsword and stuck it in the door, barring the exit

Tokugawa: "Ok, hold him down" Jaator deftly tossed Zarous on a nearby table and revived him.

Jaator: "Now, You're not going to start at the locals again are you?"

Zarous: "unnh.. my head, how'd we get over here?" looking around: "Who trashed the place? did I lose another barfight?"

Daris: "No, you trashed the place"

Tokugawa: "You started the fight, although you couldn't've injured much more than an inanimate object, and that would've been a stretch." Daris looked around the inn to see if anything other than decor was injured

Zarous: "I'm a Viking... for thats the thing to be."

Tokugawa did a doubletake: "Oh, not that again!"

Zarous: "No, It's clear now... who I am."

The group looked at each other to reassure themselves that it was Zarous that was of the fried grey-matter, and not themselves.

Tokugawa to Zarous: "Oh, ok.. whatever you say Zarous, lets find some lodging for the night"

Tokugawa to the others: "I say we lock him up"

The others nodded in agreement... Zarous was locked in a room for the night, but never was the same thereafter.