Mythology Monday: The Kidnapping Of Idun

I haven’t talked about a Norse myth for a while. Let’s remedy that.

So, to start off, Odin, Loki, and Hoenir are schlepping around some mountains a pretty fair distance from Asgard, doing god stuff. There’s not a lot growing around here, and they’re getting pretty hungry. Thankfully, there’s a herd of oxen nearby, so they kill one and set about preparing it.

There’s just one small problem: the meat absolutely refuses to cook.

They hear an “aHEM” from somewhere nearby, and turn to find a big-ass eagle staring down at them. The eagle says, “So, I’m the one that’s keeping your meat from cooking, but I’ll stop doing that if you let me have some.” The gods reluctantly agree, and the eagle comes down and grabs all the good bits.

This causes Loki to charge at the creature with a stick, which the eagle grabs and flies off with. With Loki still attached to the stick.

And here’s where we find out that the eagle isn’t actually an eagle, but a giant named Thjazi, disguised as an eagle.

Loki’s like, “Hey, not cool, bro, let me down.”

To which Thjazi responds, “I’ll let you down if you bring me Idun and her magic immortality apples.”

Loki, who is mostly interested in self-preservation at this point, responds, “OK,” and Thjazi lets him down.

So the trio make their way back to Asgard, and Loki goes up to Idun. “Hey, Idun,” he says. “So, we found this really awesome forest while we were out that has all kinds of fruit like your apples. Want to come check that out?”

Idun, who apparently never received the memo to not trust a word out of Loki’s mouth, says, “DO I?” and the two head out to the forest. Where Idun is immediately scooped up by Thjazi and taken to his realm of Thrymheim.

Some time passes, and the gods notice something strange: they’re getting older. Now, this is obviously something that’s not supposed to be happening, so Odin calls a meeting. They discuss the issue for a bit and realize 2 things:

1) Idun is missing, and

2) She was last seen with Loki.

Coming to the 100% correct conclusion that this is Loki’s fault, they tell him to fix this mess, or they’ll kill him. Again, since Loki is all about self-preservation, he agrees. With the help of some hawk feathers from Freya, he turns into a hawk and flies over to Thrymheim.

Forunately, Thjazi isn’t at home at the moment, so he uses his magic to turn Idun into a nut and flies off with her.

Unfornuately, Thjazi wasn’t all that far away and sees the whole thing.

So, Loki is flying back to Asgard with Idun, and Thjazi is in hot pursuit. The Aesir, though, are well prepared and have placed a barrier of kindling around their borders. As soon as Loki makes it past, they set the barrier on fire and roast Thjazi’s ass.

And the moral of the story, as with many Norse myths, is to not trust what Loki says under any circumstances.

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