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Rhona Odinsdóttir
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Age : 26 y/o
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PostSubject: The Hunt (open) Sun Jun 04, 2017 1:05 am




Damn Bears



Rhona held her bow away from her body. She had an arrow already set up to fire, and she walked as softly as she could. She had left her house when it was still dark outside, wanting to get in to the forest to hunt for more meat, and fur as well. She did not know what she would find, but she was prepared. Besides her bow and a quiver of arrows on her back, she carried her axes in her belt; she had ordered them from the new blacksmith, and they were of the finest Uddevallian craftmanship. Rhona kept creeping through the forest, listening for signs of prey or predator near. She paused and looked at the ground, seeing large wolf prints. Strange. She had not seen wolves in the forest, and she had been hunting there for years. They seemed to be older, so she walked on. She saw signs of rabbit and deer, and chose to go after the deer. More meat, even though the furs were not as warm as rabbit.
Rhona crouched by a tree quickly as she could; she had heard a twig crunching from being stepped on. She slowed her breathing, and focused on calming herself down so she could listen for more noise. She heard another crack; it was coming from her left. She turned and adjusted her body, drawing the arrow back as far as it would go. She aimed, and waited for whatever it was to clear the trees that were blocking it from her sight.
   
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Thora Haraldsdóttir
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PostSubject: Re: The Hunt (open) Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:19 pm

Thora apparently had a knack for stumbling upon hunters in the woods, she thought ruefully. So much for the solitude she'd been hoping for when she set out this morning. She was dressed for a hunt, wearing soft brown trousers, leather boots, and a dark green tunic. She'd arranged the beads braided in her hair so they wouldn't clink together as she walked, and although she carried a quiver of arrows and her bow slung across her back, her favorite ax resting at her hip, she had no intention of seeking out prey. If it happened to find her, well, then so be it, but for today her primary purpose was exploration.

She stepped on a twig to alert the woman to her presence. Thora could tell from her movements the woman was formidable, and she had no desire to be shot by her. Rustling leaves a few leaves so the woman would know exactly where she was coming from, Thora stepped out between two trees, hands held down by her side, palms forward and open to show no weapon was in her hands.

Thora shot her a friendly smile, racking her brain to try to figure out where she had seen this woman before. She'd only been in Kattegat a little while, herself.... The training ground, perhaps? Thora wouldn't be surprised if this woman was a shieldmaiden, too. "Sorry to startle you, I seem to have a knack for surprising hunters lately." Her smile widened, the corners of her light green eyes crinkling as she followed up with an attempt to ease some of the tension in the air. "It's a bad habit. I'm Thora." Hopefully she hadn't disturbed the woman's hunt too much.
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Rhona Odinsdóttir
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PostSubject: Re: The Hunt (open) Mon Jul 31, 2017 12:55 am




DAMN BEARS



Rhona watched as a female figure cleared the trees, and waited a moment before lowering her bow. She saw that the woman had her hands out and away from the axe at her belt, with her bow slung across her back. Standing up, she relaxed her grip on her weapon, and listened as the stranger introduced herself. Thora. She looked familiar, and then Rhona realized that she had seen her on the training fields. Coming back to the present moment, she introduced herself. "Thora. My name is Rhona. I have seen you before, training, right?" She watched as the smile stayed on Thora's face. She seemed to be a pleasant woman, and though they were in the forest, Thora didn't look to be there just for hunting, since her bow was not at the ready. Rhona walked up to her, admiring the beads braided throughout the womans long blonde hair. Giving her a smile, she asked"Have you come across any game? I have seen tracks, but no animals yet." Waiting for a response, Rhona scanned the area, looking to see if their conversation had caused any animals to flee.

Rhona loved the forest. The type of quiet you couldn't find anywhere else, the only noise that usually surrounded her was the sound of birds and bugs going about their lives, combined with the sound of a breeze moving branches and foliage around. Turning her attention back to Thora, she wondered about her motives for being in the forest today. Perhaps she was getting to know the area? Rhona waited for a response, while numerous questions ran through her mind.

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PostSubject: Re: The Hunt (open) Mon Jul 31, 2017 5:27 pm

She was glad the woman didn't seem too upset at the intrusion. "I thought I'd seen you before, but couldn't remember where. You're right though, it was at the training grounds." She remembered now, and was glad Rhona wasn't upset with her. Thora was tough, born and trained in Uddevalla, but even so she had no desire to cross the woman before her, not right now at least. She would gladly challenge her on the training field next time she saw her there--Thora loved a good spar and thought Rhona would be a good match-up.

She thought for a moment, trying to recall if she'd seen anything noteworthy to pass on. "I did scare a big stag back that way." She jerked her thumb over her shoulder. "There were some fox tracks near the stream, too. They're fresh, probably from last night. I was following them when I interrupted you." She didn't add that she'd only been following them from curiosity, just to see where they led. Thora had no intention of shooting anything today, not really. Today she just wanted to learn the woods around Kattegat, so when she did have to hunt, she would have some idea where the game hid.

A bird called nearby and Thora scanned the treetops until she found the little brown creature, perched on a branch a little behind Rhona. "It seems we have some company." She studied the bird for a moment before turning her attention back to the other woman. "Where are the good hunting spots here? I haven't been in Kattegat long enough to know."
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PostSubject: Re: The Hunt (open) Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:44 pm




DAMN BEARS



Rhona was looking around at the green colors surrounding them both, when she heard Thora reply.
Watching her motions, she glanced in the direction that the young woman indicated, searching for any sign of the probably long gone stag. There were some fox tracks near the stream, too. They're fresh, probably from last night. I was following them when I interrupted you. Rhona chuckled, looking down at the ground and around her immediate vicinity before replying,"You didn't interrupt much besides sightseeing, I'm afraid. The larger game seems to have moved on, for the most part."
Stepping to the side and relaxing slightly, Rhona scanned the woods once more before her gaze came back to Thora. Answering her question about good hunting spots, she said,"Early in the season, this is usually a good spot to begin hunting, as you can slowly creep to the stream and find a small herd of deer drinking. Other animals quench their thirst here as well."
Rhona was surprised to hear that Thora had not been in Kattegat long. The influx of newcomers was exacerbated by their increased level of trading, due to success from raids. Bjorn must be going crazy, and Rhona smiled, knowing the look he would surely have when thinking about the fact that they were no longer a small, quiet town that they had grown up in.
"What brings you to Kattegat? Since you are asking about good hunting spots, I assume you mean to stay awhile. Perhaps we can train together after you've met Bjorn?" Rhona remembered the admonishment he had given her for training with Svart, and had wisely decided not to make the same mistake with Thora.

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PostSubject: Re: The Hunt (open) Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:09 pm

Thora was alternating between watching Rhona and watching the little bird perched in the tree above the other woman's shoulder. She did have a soft spot for the singing of birds. Where she was from, birdsong meant springtime, meant foals running alongside their dams and the thaw of spring. And then not long after, it meant her and her brother knocking each other into the dirt, preparing for the raiding season. Spring was a time for fun and training, for being carefree after the farmwork was done. Not like winter, with its constant cold and drudgery.

She listened when Rhona spoke, a rueful smile creeping onto her face. "You can blame it on me anyway. You're the second hunter I've interrupted today." She nodded as Rhona answered her question. Streams were generally good hunting spots, that was true. Maybe here was too close to the town, though, she considered. Kattegat was a large town, much larger than Uddevalla, and she had been a little shocked upon her arrival. Most people seemed to be friendly though, and so settling in wasn't so bad.

She considered Rhona's question a moment before answering, simply trying to think of a way to explain herself. Her reasons for coming to Kattegat were sentimental, and she felt a bit silly saying them out loud. "When I was growing up, my father always said he would have liked to fight for King Ragnar. He died not too long ago. I know it is silly, but since I carry his sword, I thought if I used it to fight for Ragnar's sons, then at least in some way my father would get to fight for Ragnar." She shrugged, looking down as she dug the toe of her boot into the ground, fidgeting.

She looked up quickly at Rhona's offer, smiling. "I look forward to training with you. I've met Ubbe so far, but not Bjorn." She stretched idly, not liking to be still for so long. Thora was one who was constantly moving. "And you? Have you been in Kattegat long? You seem familiar with it." She gave the other shieldmaiden another easy smile, curious about her.
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PostSubject: Re: The Hunt (open) Mon Oct 30, 2017 12:23 am




DAMN BEARS



Rhona shifted as Thora answered her. The chirping bird behind them might indicate that there was no game or predators nearby, which had her relaxing slightly. Upon hearing that Thora had met Ubbe but not Bjorn, she looked down. What was remarkable about the new woman was how closely she resembled Rhona's past shieldsister, þorunn. At the memory of her, a wave of sadness crept up on Rhona. Pushing it away, she looked back up at the woman. Seeing her would be hard for Bjorn, but there was nothing to be done for it.
"I was born in Kattegat, and have lived here my whole life. And I believe that your reason for fighting is a good one. At least there is a passion and depth behind it, instead of just the search for riches."

Looking around, trying to quell the discomfort of old memories, Rhona shifted again.

"Are you planning on making your permanent home in Kattegat?"
Rhona did not want to seem unwelcoming, but the protective part of her was worried that Thora's presence would only add more worry for Bjorn. Although it would be nice to have a close shield sister once again. Her feelings were starting to confuse her, and Rhona hated that the most. She decided that whatever the Gods had chosen to happen, she would accept. Perhaps Bjorn needed Thora, if she could be stronger than þorunn had been?

   
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PostSubject: Re: The Hunt (open) Tue Oct 31, 2017 5:32 pm

Thora watches Rhona shifting, and she can't help the smile. She recognizes that part of her, the part that can't be still for too long. It's n impulse she's found is common among those who fight in the shield wall. It isn't surprising, since warriors tend to be a certain type of people, share certain beliefs and personality traits. She only offers the other woman a small, sad smile at the mention of her father, shrugging. [b"]My siblingss thought it was silly. They wanted me to stay in Uddevalla with them."[/b] She did miss them. Coming here on her own was hard, but it was something she needed to do. There was more she was running from, but she isn't going to tell Rhona that. She hasn't told anyone, not yet. It's her shame, she wants to keep it to herself a while longer. Maybe in time, she'll tell.

She senses some unspoken tension in the girl, or maybe apprehension, but she does her best to ignore it. Rhona's been here her whole life, watched Kattegat grow into a flourishing trade center. She's probably suspicious of all newcomers. Thora has no idea what pain she may someday uncover, of the reason behind Bjorn's glaring eyes on her whenever he sees her. All she knows is that the eldest prince hates her, but Ubbe has promised to be a friend to her. Time will tell in what ways the three spinners wove her fate. "I've heard Kattegat has grown very much in recent years, it must be strange to see so many new faces." She gives her an easy smile, idly stretching her shoulders. "I would like to stay here for a while. I like Kattegat so far, it is good land and the people are friendly. I do miss my family, though." She wants to ask about Bjorn, to see if she can uncover the meaning behind his dislike of her--she's never even spoken to the man. But she doesn't. It isn't her business to know, and so she shoves her curiosity down. "How long have you been fighting in the shield wall? I was told there are not many shieldmaidens in Kattegat, I'm glad to meet another." She grins, plainly excited.
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PostSubject: Re: The Hunt (open) Tue Oct 31, 2017 6:28 pm




DAMN BEARS



My siblings thought it was silly. They wanted me to stay in Uddevalla with them.

Rhona listened as Thora spoke, trying to imagine what it must be like having a family and then leaving your home. Wondering what could have caused this departure, she shrugged her curiosity off, knowing it was none of her business as long as the female did not prove to be a threat.

"It must have been hard leaving your siblings, especially if you were close with them."    Rhona watched Thora for a reaction to her words, trying to discern anger or pain that might show on her face at the mention of family. A flash of sadness was replaced by a look of determination. Rhona found that extremely interesting, and also slightly alarming. She decided to mull on that later, and listened as Thora changed the subject.

Yes, it has been exciting and...unnerving, to watch Kattegat grow so quickly. More newcomers means more risk, but I cannot deny that our people are prospering. There, again, the mention of family. Rhona decided to spend time getting to know this woman, and it would be interesting to see what happened when she finally met Bjorn. Rhona was there when Þorunn and Bjorn fell in love, and she also saw what became of Bjorn after his world had been shattered. Rhona would stand by for word, hoping that seeing Thora, and eventually speaking to her, would not be the final breaking point in all of the stress that he already carried.

How long have you been fighting in the shield wall? I was told there are not many shield maidens in Kattegat, I'm glad to meet another.

Rhona chuckled before she answered, her battle prowess was something she was extremely proud of. Thora was either very smart to bring it up, or was just truly friendly. I have been on many raids now, a part of the shield wall for many raiding seasons. It is where I belong. And you? Again, her curiosity flared up, wondering how Thora fought. She looked strong enough, if slightly less scarred than Rhona. It would be interesting to train with her. Nodding, Rhona listened as Thora spoke.


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PostSubject: Re: The Hunt (open) Wed Nov 01, 2017 6:11 pm

Thora sees no reason to hide the things she's feeling. She's seldom good at it, anyway, unless she's focusing on it. She tends to be an open person, easy to read, and trusting. Maybe a little too trusting, but she's learned that trust can be a matter of life or death in the shield wall. It's a life she was born to, older brothers thrusting wooden swords into her hands when she's barely old enough to walk. Uddevallan families train their children for the shield wall from early childhood. She grew up fighting with her fists and her wits, then later with sword, shield, and ax. She was taught to be open, to be honest, to be trusting. To be one part of a whole.

Her father and her brothers fought in the shield wall before her. She remembers watching her father with his one good arm, carefully tattooing intricate knotwork around the first scars Eirik and Audun took, and dreaming of the day he would do the same for her. She's wearing long sleeves right now, concealing the long, pink scar that runs the length of her left forearm and the looping swirls of knotwork that surround the scar. She isn't hiding it out of shame, simply because it was cold when she left her house. There's other, smaller, undecorated scars covered by her clothing; the usual for those who stand in the shield wall.

She grins at the mention of her siblings, shrugging. "I do miss them, but I did it for my father's memory. I want to be worthy of his sword, and he greatly admired Ragnar Lothbrok," she admits. There's nothing angry or sad in her bright green eyes, no indication of a terrible fight, for there had been none. The trouble had been within Thora herself, with the fear that grew in her like a poison whenever she thought of her ex-husband. There's no trace of that fear now, only a relaxed, almost lazy smile. She's only telling Rhona what she told her before--about coming here with her father's sword. Anything about her ex-husband she'll keep to herself. The woman seems friendly enough, but she's still a stranger. Thora's beginning to learn that maybe trusting too easily isn't always a good thing. "It is very different here. I was surprised by its size. Uddevalla doesn't care for trade, only for forging weapons and fighting." She grins, tinged with an edge of something almost savage. "It is a good place to be a warrior, although not the best place to be a woman." That's the closest she'll come today to admitting at what she hides in her past, and she hopes Rhona is sharp enough to pick up on it.

She can't help but chuckle when Rhona answers, her bright green eyes glimmering happily. Rhona's words are something Thora feels in her bones: the rightness of knowing where you belong. She feels it, too, about the shield wall, about crossing the wide and empty seas for new lands. "It's been three raiding seasons since I came of age, and for three raiding seasons I've stood in the shield wall. I was born for the shield wall and for fast ships." She smiles at Rhona again, wondering if they fought differently in Kattegat than in Uddevalla. A shield wall is a shield wall, but how do they make warriors here? How do they teach them not to crumple beneath an enemy onslaught, to welcome the killing and the embrace of the Valkyries? How do they fight when the shield splinters on their arm, and perhaps most important of all: why do they fight?
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PostSubject: Re: The Hunt (open) Wed Nov 01, 2017 6:59 pm




DAMN BEARS



Rhona watched as a smile graced the face of the woman standing opposite her. It reached her eyes as she spoke about her siblings, so Rhona guessed that family was not the reason she left. But strangely, as much as she seemed to love them, it was not enough to keep her there either. Thora began to speak of Uddevalla, and something caught Rhona's ear. "...It is a good place to be a warrior, although not the best place to be a woman."

Nodding, Rhona said,"Mm that is true of quite a few places, unless a woman can defend herself." With a wink, her hand slowly patted her ever present axes. She thought that maybe Thora was running from something she had done, or perhaps even running from someone. "But the men that would prey upon us find little to hunt in Kattegat. One just needs to shout, and a shield-sibling will usually come running." She looked directly at Thora, hoping to convey that if Thora was innocent of wrong-doing, then Rhona would stand with her if she needed.

After some more discussion, Rhona had decided that Thora was more similar to her than she might have first believed. Perhaps stronger than the one that had left them all. She could only hope. And there was a sure way to find out.

"I would enjoy training with you, I think. We both have a clear sense of where we belong, and it seems you are strong enough to go after what you really want. Perhaps soon? If you're not busy after the upcoming feast, that would be perfect."


Rhona tilted her head, all hopes of hunting gone. No matter, she could buy some meat on this day. Smiling at Thora, she waited for a response.

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