Sons of Thorvald: The Epic Saga
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Part I: Thorvald's YouthOnce upon a time, there was Thorvald Thorvaldsson, a young man who lived in an old village whose people were well known for their unbreakable sp...spirits. In this village contortion has been an old tradition, enjoyed by many and passed from generation to generation among those who practiced it.
A very very long time ago, this village was founded around a sacred shrine of Sveigja, the goddess who was believed to have given people the knowledge of how to relax their back muscles after a day of hard work. It's because of her gift that people were able to do hard work day after day without getting exhausted and keep their bodies feeling young and agile.
"Somewhere in Midgard
There was an old yard,
Belonging to Sveigja
The goddess of bendies;
People approached it,
And built a village,
No longer lonely
Was the One and Only."
The shrine in the middle of the village has always been the center for all celebrations. It was believed that it's the goddess who keeps the spirits of the villagers so high that there's always good harvest and very low alcohol consumption ratio, so praising the goddess was a honorable deed.
For a long time Thorvald was one of the boys who performed contortion at festivals dedicated to Sveigja as it was considered a very faithful way of worshipping her, not to mention that he loved his contortions to no end and always thought of it as a blessing, to be born in this village, as he knew that contortion was seen as very uncommon in all other villages and their village was quite unique for it...
Part II: Of Setting Up The BusinessBut one day his practice was stopped as young Thorvald was recruited to become a soldier. He spent several years in the barracks, which turned him into an experienced city guard. When he got back home he was in his 30s and had already long lost everything he gained as a child, contortion-wise.
"By twisting and bending
But there was an ending:
He, too, retired;
In Thor's honor
He gained new skills,
A whole new profession
Helped paying his bills."
Yes, during the military training he also gained skills as a blacksmith and upon his return he opened a small smithy for the needs of the village. Back when he was a kid his village often lacked nails and many tools were getting very old and rusty. They always had to use the services of a nearby village's blacksmith so the villagers were very happy to hear Thorvald's decision.
After opening the business, he married a beautiful blond girl named Inga whom he couldn't stop loving day and night and so very shortly his three sons were born, one after another: Bjorn (21 years old in the middle of the picture), Leif (19 years old on the left side) and Eirik (18 years old on the right side).
"Bjorn got born,
Leif gained life,
Eirik was here
And so was Thorvald's wife;
Looking at his brood,
He'd had a great time
As he'd conclude."
So Thorvald Thorvaldsson's life changed a lot since the days of his youth and he was now raising his sons, preparing them to inherit his house and the smithy one day. He almost said goodbye to yesterday and he never imagined that one day his son Leif, the dark haired young man who looked like a copy of his father back in the days, would also become interested in contortionism...
Part III: Of Leif And EirikLeif always had the character and passion of his father for everything. His father wanted him to become a blacksmith one day because Leif was always very interested in his work and always watched him in the smithy, but it did not surprise the father either when his son became so curious about contortion.
Then Thorvald told his son the story of his childhood, about the years that were still dear to him, and even though young Leif couldn't believe that his massive father once used to be a slender and lithe contortionist, but he was very honored to hear the story and made up his mind to re-discover and follow his father's long lost steps.
His father willingly started to help him with the training. He constructed a small sauna next to the smithy, where they could exercise every evening. The youngest brother Eirik also joined them on the first day of training and was very excited by the whole idea.
Eirik was only busy with keeping the house and the yard clean and taking cake of their little garden. So he had a lot of free time and would often run off to watch the performing boys near the Sveigja's shrine. Something always attracted him to the goddess and her shrine. He loved the unusual way in which she was being worshipped, but he could never dream that contortion would one day become part of his life as well.
After their training started, he put his heart into keeping the sauna an always clean and lovely place and making sure it's ready for the intense practice every evening.
Of a boy to be born
Who'd bend his body
Like a ram's horn;
Many days passed
Changing many Suns,
The rare bird was found
Among Thorvald's sons."
So to everyone's surprise Eirik also proved to be the bendiest of the brothers, and over time surpassed the entire village, so it was often told that the boy was blessed by the goddess herself. Leif was very close but it took him a lot of dedication to keep up with the progress of his younger brother, who indeed always seemed to have been blessed...
Part IV: Of Bjorn The WoodcutterThe older brother, Bjorn, who's depicted in the middle, might seem smaller in the picture due to the effect of perspective distortion... That aside, he is the oldest of them and, being the woodcutter he is, he is actually the most broad-shouldered and manly-looking among the brothers. As they always need a lot of wood for the smithy, Bjorn's position in the family is well respected.
Bjorn helped to build the sauna and also really loved watching his younger brothers getting trained and would come to watch every day. The way their torsos bent reminded him of his beloved trees and how their trunks bend to the wind. Despite being a woodcutter, he loved trees on many levels: he loved their beauty and he loved how much they help men every single day in their lives, so for every tree he cut he always planted several new ones and took care of their growth.
So watching contortion pleased him to no end and he even learned a couple of bendy moves himself, although he didn't want to get in his brothers' way, he really enjoyed watching how they compete with each other, getting more and more skilled as the time passes by...
Part V: AfterwordI'm sorry if this saga was a little too long but I really enjoyed writing it as well as working on this picture ^-^ I wanted to make something about baths and contortion for a long time and I'm very happy with how this picture turned out ^-^
Thank you so much for looking/reading and I hope you enjoyed this picture and story... ^_^