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Thursian Gallows


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Ulfheimr was in general a closed off society even from its neighbors. Radio and media traffic was always plentiful from Ulfheimr, but on this day all radio transmission stopped. All media towers and internet service to the outside wurld was abruptly cut. Ulfheimr had gone dark. Air traffic was halted and warnings were sent to neighboring countries and anyone who frequents Ulfan airports to steer clear of their borders. Several hours later, planes from Ulfheimr flew across the Western border and over the empty lands between Nyanstan and Magnus. Minutes later, the river valleys exploded in fire and brimstone. The night sky was lit with red and orange. Radio transmissions leaked out into listening posts. They could only pick out several words, "Jormungandr... hryðjuverkamaður... Thurses..." The planes returned to Ulfan territory and returned to the skies an hour later, setting the land ablaze with hellfire once more. A line of APC's swarmed out of the Ulfan border and singular berserker forces crawled across the land like ants. Gunfire would echo of the taiga and outskirt cities of the neighboring countries would occasionally see a wild berserkergangr stalk through the napalm fires, covered in blood and filth and gone just as quickly. By morning all was silent once again.

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  • 3 months later...

    It had come to the attention of Erilaz Kromeus that a bordering nation Nyantastan was sending forest inspectors and lumber officials to appraise the treescape to the west of Ulfheimr. Though Ulfheimr’s interests lay in the North, there was no brotherly love lost between the taiga pagans and the strangers that lived next door to them. 

    The orders went out, “And Surtr’s children did march upon the western Bifrost bridge, and they shook it with all manner of flashings from their swords and dreadful burning eyes,” over the radio to one of the air bases in Ulfheimr. A large bomber took off in the darkness of the night and flew over the empty land. Small dark shapes fell in a line from the plane like dewdrops and the forests erupted in ash and flame. Napalm fire exploded in the forests and consumed plant and animal and any unlucky traveler while the pilots chanted, “Sky falling rolling thunder here comes Jormungandr, brings the end of you and me! Holmgang, Holmgang, Holmgang!”

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Over the course of several days, 80% of all communication within Ulfheimr converted to encryption following the events of the napalm bombing. “verða eins falin og karp loki varð” was the commanding broadcast from the office of the Erilaz, clearly a hidden meaning in the words as communication drastically altered. English was dropped as communication within the country aside from some news broadcasts in favor of using the twenty ancestral languages of the tribes, who none but the Ulfans knew for now. Any electronic data was also communicated with these scripts and was encrypted with a combination of stream encryptions and steganography. 

 

Every tribe rallied their fighting men and alliances formed between previous rivals faster than had been seen on Argis. Weapons and armament now flowed in free trade between the tribes and allowed for the fighting forces to begin immediate drills. The berserkergangr danced around bonfires at night and fired rifles during the day. Packs of berserkergangrs could now be seen roaming the wilds of Ulfheimr, howling at the night and erecting wooden statues to Thor, Odin, Tyr, and Freyr. 

 

Laws were passed in a matter of hours that a study of military and war would be added to each community learning center. Collegiate level courses were led by berserkergangr to familiarize the youth of Ulfheimr with medicinal and lethal plants in Argis and other continents. They were then trained to fight with firearms, axe, and fist. The younger children were taught military theory and studied the lands around them and tactics. 

 

An english news broadcast was streamed from the hall of Erilaz Kromeus as he addressed the nation, “ In the times that we live now full of its own strife, we find ourselves nevertheless in a different wurld than that of our ancestors. Our veterans grow old and die. Our warriors die surrounded by their families. This may be good for some for they shall see their loving families in Hel. Others are robbed of the opportunity to see their brothers again in Valhol. And they will never know the glories of Odin’s hall. Therefore from this point on, no military is permitted to bar the old or sickly from fighting. No one is permitted to keep them from dying with a weapon in their hand. Let our old enter the hall of the slain. They have my utter protection, and anyone found guilty of blocking entry to our aged or sick will they themselves be locked in a cell until they waste away so that they themselves may never enter Odin’s hall. They shall die as they please.”

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