I blame the existence of this missive on having too many pictures of half-naked Tom Hiddleston on my feed. Thanks, ladies. You know who you are.

Standard caveat: don’t really work with Norse deities. No claims about accuracy and all that.

One time, there was this asshole in Germany who orchestrated an attempt at genocide. Opposing him meant certain death, or a miserable life, rather than a comfortable one. Do you know what we called the people who stood against him?

Heroes.

Long before Thorgeir, I saw it coming. I saw the malcontent. I saw people feeling alienated by deities and powers they felt were not doing right by them. I knew they were ripe for the taking by another religion.

I stood before my pantheon, and I objected. I told each deity their faults, announced their particular brand of stupidity, dragged out their broken promises, their tarnished vows, their short-sightedness and arrogance. I mocked them until they cried. I shoved it in their faces, with the vain hope that they’d see it. They didn’t. You know the rest of the story.

It was stupid. It was childish. It was suicidal. I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

Win or lose, consequences or no, it was the right thing to do. Holding up the mirror to the ugliest bits of them was a gift. Had they accepted it, Heathenry would, today, have an unbroken tradition, and more recorded accounts of our myths written by someone other than (fucking) Snorri.

Bear that in mind the next time you fail to stand up to people purportedly speaking for deities, who bear messages of oppression, tyranny, powerlessness and pain. Think of what it has cost our people. Think of me, trapped beneath the Earth, with poison dripping on my face, and hear my words: I’d do it again. I would do it all over again.