It was mid winter, and the celebration of the turn of the darkness had already started. The children were waiting for Odin to come with gifts, as they all thought they had been nice this year. But Freidis knew Solvar had not. She was the only one who knew. She hadn’t told anyone.
Solvar looked at her, with a nasty grin. He knew as well. He knew. And he would do it again, she was sure of it. She hated him, but most of all she was scared. He would not get any gifts this year, she thought. He wouldn’t get any gifts at all.
The pig was slaughtered. The fire burned in the fireplace, and the smoke rose up towards the hole in the roof. The smell of grilled grease filled the room, like it did every winter at this time. They were all ready to eat when the heard the noise on the roof: Odin’s eight legged horse. They ran outside to look for the gifts. There were no gifts there.
Solvar got upset. Stupid Odin, he said.
But, Solvar, be careful! Said his mum. One should not speak badly of the gods. They could hear you.
Solvar didn’t care. He went inside, into the big room which was their house. Someone was there. A huge man, with a soft, pointed hat on his head. Red clothes. He turned slowly around. Solvar could see him now. Odin. His big, white beard. The sack of gifts he always carried. But the sack was empty.
I know what you did to your sister, said Odin. His one eye lit up in lust for punishment. The other was an empty socket. Solvar started backing towards the door.
Ho ho ho! Laughed Odin as Solvar turned and ran towards the door. It shut. He slammed on the door, shouting for his mum. No answer.
No one can hear you! You’re already gone! Solvar could see his horse now as well. The living room was diffuse, somehow. Fading. He was cold. Odin grabbed him. Solvar tried to fight, but Odin was a god. He threw Solvar into the sack.
Ho ho ho! He jumped on his horse. They flew into the night and disappeared.
Freidis came into the room. There were gifts all over. Her brother was not there. She had already known. He wouldn’t get any gifts this year. He wouldn’t get any gifts at all.