There was once a city in rolling green plains. It was larger than any city known to Hurskfjell and had massive walls made of iron, not stone. They believed in wisdom and had forsaken both strength and the ancestors. Upset with the people turning away, the ancestors banished man and charged the spirits with taking the races far from the city in the rolling green plains.
Vitr, spirit of wind, water, ice, and winter, was sent north. It was a cold and frigid place, and the spirits and ancestors knew this, so Vitr was given the hardiest races.
Man had to split between the four spirits. Though he was ill suited for the land, he had no choice. So was the price of the sin committed.
The ulfr, or wolf tribes, went due to their thick fur and ability to commune with nature. They were dear friends with man while in the city, and in the far north they would advise how best to live.
Craefga, a tall insectoid race, had built the walls of the city. They created all sorts of wonders, and it was said Hurskfjell was a vault of rare materials for them to dabble in. They went eagerly, no matter the risk to life.
Finally, the giants went along for their great size. Why would a giant of a man not go to a giant of a hill? They were twice the size of a man and had tremendous strength.
Vitr was not yet a wyrm, and its heart had not frozen over to man. When they arrived at the base of Hurskfjell, the mountain’s icy peaks off in the distance, Vitr said, “This is a place you may settle. It will have harsh winters, but there will be summer, where you can grow your food as you did in the south. Man, would you take this as yours?”
Shodnr was the leader of men. He consulted the ulfr and they said, “It is good that Vitr offers us this land. It will only get more vile the farther we ascend. Take it and live a good life.”
But Shodnr was a fool. His heart was closed off to the advice out of pride, and he said, “We are not soft. We will climb.”
The giants said, “We tire. Our heavy bodies take so much to move. Please let us rest.”
Vitr was disappointed in Shodnr’s answer, but it granted the giants the plains at the foot of Hurskfjell.
As they reached the Mid Climes, Vitr said, “These mountains are filled with metal and mineral. The metals can help build a great civilization despite the weather. The minerals will break apart in stew to give you nutrients, though there is little to hunt or gather. Man, do you want this place as yours?”
The ulfr again said, “Take it, you fool. We live and die beside you, and if you do not take this, surely not even Vitr’s kindness and power can save us from an eternal winter.”
Again Shodnr was proud. “We are not smiths. Leave it to the insects. We will continue north.” Shodnr spat, and it froze before striking the snow covered ground.
The craefga said, “We thank man for his kindness and will burrow deep within the mountain. Here we will craft great things and create a city even better than where we had been.”
At the peak of Hurskfjell, where even Vitr shivered from the cold, the small group came to a halt again. At this point man and ulfr were furious with Shodnr and the few he took council with. Vitr saw it, and pitied them.
Vitr said, “There is no farther to go. This will be your grave, but I am kind to your people. I will create a land where winter does not touch. It will have four seasons, and each will take an equal share of the year. Outside of that land you will find death. Winter never ceases here, and even the blizzards rarely hold out. May man and ulfr find life survivable.”
Shodnr boasted, “This does us well. We will colonize this entire mountain, from the top down, and the ulfr will guide us to victory. We are not as weak as you think.”
Vitr said nothing more. It created the realm for man to live and went off. Ulfr and man both griped about Shodnr, but warriors were on his side and silenced them harshly. Then Shodnr said, “We will start here. This will be known as the city of Shodnr, for I have founded it with a great vision. Once we have gained our strength, we will head out and create more homesteads. Man and ulfr will be great, like we were before.”
So did Vitr bring his people to Hurskfjell. So did man decide to suffer greatly by their own hand. So did ulfr ponder if they truly wished to stand beside man.