Chapter Four

I headed out of the building and down the street, heading past numerous houses and buildings, past the pack house and into the trees surrounding the packs town, towards the campsite that we had made when we first arrived here.

I walked up to our site, and Bryja appeared in front of me.

“So General, what did Alpha Rawlins say?” She asked, her blonde hair falling in braids around her face, blue eyes piercing into mine.

“He wants us to stay until the target gives up the location to the Berserkers.” I paused, “And just call me Nerine, it’s only around people that are not our team that you need to be formal. I reminded her.

“Sorry, I forget sometimes. Did he say what he had stolen?”

I shook my head, “No, I still have no idea why we were sent here, or why the order won’t divulge the information. The pack must have paid the order a fortune.”

“Yeah, or they just wanted to get you out of Norway.” Thana spat, disgusted, as she walked over.

I sighed, “This again, really? I already told you that nothing happened, and they blew it out of proportion.”

“If I get punished for something you did, I will kill you, Nerine.”

“So, you keep saying, and I keep telling you, that they won’t punish you for something I did. Really, where is the love for you, sister?” I scolded her and she stuck out her tongue in response.

“You lead our squad so it is only natural they would punish all of us.” Sáta put in.

"they wouldn't punish you. Maybe question you that is it." I told her.

Each Valkyrie or Berserker squad consisted of ten members and to be a leader or general of a squad was an honor bestowed only on the best, but because Valkyries where competitive beings there were constant challenges among them to earn the role as leader. I picked my squad carefully and made sure they were people I could trust, but even still, I was wary of betrayers among me. I had one Valkyrie on my team that I kept because I knew she was against me and refused to let her out of my sight.

“Where is everyone?” I asked when I looked around for the other members of my team. Only Bryja, Sáta and Thana were here. I was hoping to spot the coward who left me alone in battle. I wanted to speak to her.

“They went into town. They figured we finished our mission so they could go get a drink.” Thana shared.

I nodded, “They did well and technically, we completed our mission. We just have to wait for the Alpha Rawlins to tell that to Valhalla Bridge.”

“Sáta remind them not to cause trouble or draw attention, we are, after all, representatives of our order, and they will punish anyone who makes them look bad.”

She nodded and headed out of the forest to track them down.

I unbuckled my sword belt from and placed it against a log before sitting down in front of the fire.

“Did that vampire bite you?” Thana asked, worried.

"No." I lied; I did not want my team to think I was weak enough to let a vampire bite me. Thana looked at my suspicious but didn't say anything.

A vampire bite could poison a Valkyrie depending on what type of vampire it was and his intent. Considering he called me his fucken bride, I’m pretty sure I am safe. All I had to worry about were the voices. A vampire, once he has bitten you, can talk into your mind and try to overpower you to do his bidding. Lucky for me, they covered that in training, some potent herbs once a day would keep him from taking control of my body but wouldn’t stop the voices.

“How long is your arm going to be stuck like that?” Bryja asked, her green eyes eyeing up my cast. Her blonde hair falling over her shoulder as she watched me. She was petite and curvy like Sáta, if I didn’t know better, I would think they were sisters.

“Should be fine in a few hours, no later than tomorrow. Dr Aura from the wolf pack said it should be healed by then.”

“Well, at least we completed our part of the mission. The rest is up to the Berserkers.” She frowned.

“These woods are going to get very loud.”

“I know, they love to party.” I laughed. “We better enjoy our last night of quiet.”

“Things used to be so simple, we would collect fallen warriors and bring them back to Valhalla. Now we are sent on missions to destroy vampires and track down people and things for our clients.” Bryja shared, shaking her head.

“We do as Freyja and Odin ask that is our job and why we are here.”

“Don’t you ever want more?”

“Wanting more? We serve the God Odin and our Queen Goddess Freyja. We should be content with that.” I scolded her, although I agreed it would be nice to have a say in our lives and how we decided to live it, or who we decided to live it with.”

“I know.” She looked down ashamed, pulling out her dagger and stone, she started sharpening it. “Sometimes I just wish we were able to live as the humans do, find love have families.”

“You could, but you know the cost.” I reminded her as I stood up, grabbing a pot and dumping a can of food into it before placing it over the fire.” Crouching down to cook it. I added, “unless you can get Odin’s blessing.”

“Maybe the cost would be worth it if you find someone you love.”

“Quit talking about things that will get us punished.” Thana scolded as she sat down next to Bryja.

“You never know who might be listening.” I pointed out.

Bryja nodded, “So what are we going to do with our spare time while the Berserkers get the information from the Vamp?”

“What do we do whenever we have spare time?” I asked her, then replied, “We train.”

Valhalla Bride was famous for sending us on one mission after another downtime to train would be a welcome change.

“Really?” Bryja asked, disappointed.

“We wouldn’t want to get rusty, would we?” I asked with a smile.

“You are evil.” Thana pouted.

“No, I am prepared, and that is what keeps us alive on the battlefield.”

“Valkyries were created to help Odin with his army. What good would it do if we were killed in the process?” I scolded them.

After Odin sacrificed his eye to see the future, he saw the final battle, Ragnarök, and decided he needed help to build his army.

There had been a huge war between the Germanic tribes and many shield maidens had died in battle. He decided female warriors with their beautiful faces were the best ones to guide his new warriors to Valhalla because they would be better able to convince the fallen soldiers to come with them.

His decision made, he filled the rain with his essence and as the rain fell from the sky soaking the dead shield maidens; they rose, becoming immortal warriors, wings spray from their backs and they flew to Valhalla to meet their new father. Odin ordered them to travel to battle fields and gather powerful warriors for his army and bring them to him, to wait in his hall Valhalla until the final battle.

The Valkyries did as they were told and gathered many warriors, they also learned who the strongest generals were, when they delivered the warriors, they informed Odin of what they had learned. The Generals who worshipped Odin and had gained a name for themselves with their strength and intelligence in the battlefield, were made into immortal beings that would later become known as the Berserkers.

Valkyries later learned to control their abilities and could hide their wings from humanity so they could blend in. Hundreds of years ago, Odin and Freyja created Valhalla Bridge, to help with the plague of vampires that had begun to spread across the earth. They ordered half of the Valkyries to continue their duties and collect warriors for the army, while the other half and the Berserkers were ordered to serve in the order and help protect humanity.

"Nerine?" a hand waved in my face. “Are you there?” Bryja asked

“Yeah, sorry, lost in thought.”

“No shit. You burned the pot.” Thana laughed, pointing at the smoking handle in my hand.

I threw the pot to the side. “I wasn’t that hungry, anyway.”

Noise erupted nearby, yelling and fighting could be heard. Then I heard him.

“Nerine, tell these fucks who the hell I am.” a man ordered.

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