Thanya of Norda

While Roger at Woebegone but Hopeful (

is entertaining us with his hilarious history of the British Isles, his 12th part with the arrival of the Vikings reminded me of this story I wrote some time back, based on a past life remembrance.  Unlike Roger’s stories however, this one is not humorous.

Thanya of Norda
          a short story – by Sha’Tara

My name is Thanya.  I live on the coast of Norda, in a poorly fortified village.  My people are woodsmen, fisherfolk and farmers.  We constitute one of the main centers on the coast and my father and mother are considered to be the Chiefs.  I have an older brother who is a great hunter and whom I admire.

This part of my story begins when I am fourteen years, according to the Christian calendar.  In the late Summer the feared and hated Norsemen raid our village.  Our men are overwhelmed and put to the sword.  I see by father and brother die.  I pick up a sword to defend myself but I cannot handle the weight of it.  I’m quickly disarmed and brought to the leader of the raiders.  I can hear the cries of the women and the children, some being raped and killed, others rounded up, tied and put aboard the boats to be sold as slaves down the coast.  I can see and smell the smoke as our homes are systematically destroyed and burned.

A tall, red-haired and red-faced man stands in front of me.  He tears my clothes off and has me put to my knees, my wrists pulled back and tied to my ankles.  He straddles me and lifts his sword.  Laughing, he brings it down as if to cut me in half but swings it aside.  I curse him for letting me live.  He rapes me.  I scream a “prophecy” at him:  “I will have your son and when you return here he will kill you!”  He laughs again, has me untied and held away from him.  He says to me: “For that I will let you live and go free.  If indeed you have my son and if indeed he lives to defeat me in battle, I shall freely confer my title and properties to him.  I am King Garthul.  If you survive, remember that name, wench.”

They rowed off the shore, then sailed away with their spoils.  I found some rags to cover myself and tried to cover the bodies of the dead.  I covered my father and brother.  I found no trace of my mother so assumed she had been taken prisoner.   I did not have the strength to drag them onto a pyre and burn them, so I left and entered the forest.  I found shelter in a cave made from a hollow windfall and survived my first winter on nuts, roots and dried husks of fruit hanging from branches or lying in clumps of grass.  I gave birth to a healthy son in the Spring and took him deep into the forest, not knowing what to do.  I found other survivors and eventually convinced most of them to return to the coast, to my village.  We gathered the bones of the dead and burned them, then performed the ritual of cleansing for the land.  Then began the task of re-building.

Throughout the years I directed the re-construction based on villages and strongholds I studied during inland wanderings.  First an inner fort made of stone, not of material that could burn.  Then an outer palisade made of strong timbers and deadly stakes.  Finally, near the beach another fence made of non-burnable materials, whatever we could find.  I trained the people, young and old, male and female, to bear and use arms of all kinds.  I designed new weapons, especially for the females.  Shoes were basic wooden sandals equipped with a sharp spearhead at the front and sometimes at the back.  Armbands made of wood were equipped with a deadly dagger that could be flipped and locked in a forward position, the tip of the blade extending past the hand.  We made bows that were longer than hunting bows and much more accurate, using longer arrows.  I made them leave crenellations in the walls, and holes that looked natural but through which arrows could be shot.  And I trained the tallest men to use long spears that could be thrust through cracks deliberately left in the walls but concealed from anyone looking from the outside.

As more and more survivors and disgruntled serfs from other parts joined us our village grew and surpassed the numbers and strength of the past.  My son became a fearsome warrior, I made sure of that.  He was tall and had red hair.  There was no doubt who his father was.

Among those who joined us came two Christian monks.  They claimed they had special knowledge they wished to impart to certain chosen people among the village.  I asked them to share their knowledge with all of us, offered to give them a special place at our regular meeting day, but they insisted their knowledge was only for the chosen.  They also insisted that we give up worshipping our gods and learned of their one god and accept him as our only god.  This I refused to do.  I gave them a hut and made the people aware of their offer.  Anyone who chose the Christian god over the land’s gods was free to do so.  Some did but it did not matter.  Christians made good warriors too, there was no conflict among us.

In time my prophecy was fulfilled.  The raiders returned and an older Garthul still led them.  As soon as the alarm was given all the people who could not fight and all the younger children with as many goats and fowl as could be taken, were sent deep into the woods in preselected hiding places.  Then we waited.  My son was then eighteen years of the Christian calendar, and eager to fight this Garthul.  I had not told him this was his father, just what he had done to his family.

Yelling their taunts, the raiders rushed our first slender defenses.  We killed several of them before we retreated to the next defensive position.  The raiders crashed through our first wall only to encounter a much more effective defense.  They had no place to hide and we defeated them there.  Garthul gave the signal for surrender and my son jumped forward to put a sword to his throat.  I ran behind him and stopped him:  “Well Garthul, we meet again.  Remember the prophecy of the young girl whose parents and brother you killed.  Remember her taunt, “I will have your son and he will kill you!”  Well here I am, and here is he, your son, Garth.”

He remembered, and believing he was about to die, he called his second and swore that his title and lands were now the property of his son, this son, my son, Garth of Norda.

And this is where my life turned.  For Garth said, “He is my father, and I cannot kill him.  Therefore, since he has so grievously harmed you, mother, here is my sword.  You must avenge your parents and your village.  This is not for me to do.”

I took the sword and held it aloft unflinchingly.  I could have easily cut his head off, but instead I laid the sword on his shoulder and said, “Life has taught me this, Garthul: That there comes a point where it becomes necessary to let go of the past and to forgive.  For as heavy as the burden of loss is, the burden of vengeance is twice as heavy.  I have reached that point.  Today I have redeemed what was lost.  I have defeated you and I am your master, I, a mere woman.  Furthermore, I have something of yours that I know is more precious to you than your own life: your son.  So here’s my proposal – listen to me well.  I wish that you should take Garth with you.  Make him into a sailor and take him back to your own land and train him in the arts of being a King there, as you are.  When the time comes, I wish for you to pass your power on to him.  Further, I wish that your country should enter into a  permanent peace with us.  We have much to trade with you, especially of hardwoods.

And it came to pass.  Garth became ruler of both Norda and his father’s land.  There were no more raids on our coasts.  We remained at peace until a new trouble began to brew from the hinterlands.  But that is a story attached to a future that is not mine nor Garth’s.


7 thoughts on “Thanya of Norda

    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Thank you for the comment. It seems real because it is real. Infinite stories are encapsulated inside bits and pieces of “time” like insects in amber which require work to extract. Time travel, or remembering past lives, is a form of archaeology, only done with the mind, not picks, shovels and brooms. Though it is available to anyone, beckoning to raise understanding outside of stilted pronouncements from a conservative and dead academia, not many want to put in the effort. Not many want to break out of their programming; their faith in their status quo to walk the “marshes of the dead” and find themselves in their own histories. Is it because of fear, laziness or pride? All three?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The Grateful Dead

        In my case, it might be because of stupidity. I have tried, I really have. But I cannot differentiate between fact and fiction. Between what could be the truth and what I wish were the truth. How to break free of these restraints?


      2. Sha'Tara Post author

        Earthians are all born with a deadly addiction called faith. They are taught to believe in basic, simplistic concepts, the three major ones being Religion, the State, and Money. These are Powers and the programming demands that an individual believes in one, or better, all three of them. What the programming “teaches” is called facts. Any information an individual comes across that does not come from the programming, the individual is taught to reject outright. That’s the problem. To break free of the programming one has to practice the art of self-empowerment. The way I did it is, if it comes from the Matrix-System-Status quo-Academia-Church-Government-Business, then it’s automatically a lie. Whether there is any truth in it doesn’t matter, the point is to reject it out of hand and “imagine” an alternative to everything the System offers. If, on the other hand, it comes from you, then it’s the truth because it’s yours. It cannot be a lie because you invented it, you own it, and you use it.

        There is no miracle; there is no easy way to do this: one just does it. Think of it as an absolute necessity. OK, imagine you have a couple of children and yourself to feed. Imagine that you already know your money is going to run out and you won’t be able to buy food. But, you have a bit of land, and you can get seeds. You may know nothing about gardening, or growing food, but you possess the basic ingredients to get you started. And basically the soil and the seeds will do most of the work for you. Till the soil, plant the seeds, water and weed, and harvest the crop. So it is with memories and breaking of programming. Grow your own “mind food” with you own imagination – and believe only in you. Forget all the rest, let it go. It will be there when you need it to interact with Matrix-programmed people, but now you need to remember yourself and the best way to do that is to re-invent your thought process. To re-create yourself. People can believe “IN” all kinds of truly stupid things like invisible sky wizards they call gods; corrupt leaders and rulers who somehow are supposed to make life easier and safer; numbers written on bits of paper or notes or just bounced around the planet which are called “money” and somehow are supposed to be worth something. Insane yet that’s how their world is managed. Why not instead believe in one’s own awareness; person-hood; value and power?

        I’ll just add this: when I set out to cancel Matrix belief from my life I did it in two ways. One, I got rid of my “soul” which is a Matrix controlling implant, and two: I created for myself a life’s purpose. The purpose is my Power because it reminds me constantly of that which I must become in order to accomplish my purpose. Such a purpose has to be of an order that cannot be accessed or touched by Matrix programming. For that I chose compassion because that is the one force you cannot find within Matrix teaching and controlling.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Sha'Tara Post author

    Once the realization is made, and accepted as a personal truth, that there is no justice; that what passes itself off as justice is merely a convenience; a means to an end for politicians, lawyers, judges and police, then one is left with but one option: to create, within one’s own sphere of influence, one’s own concept of justice. For me, being Libran, I don’t see justice as emerging from a set of rules men and gods call laws. Justice isn’t black and white, nor does it apply unilaterally, like a machine plowing or harvesting a field. Justice is not a technicality but a mind/heart approach to problems. Take that recent event, the murder of a 13 year old girl by a sadistic stalker who shot her 14 times. In my world of justice, that individual would be put in front of a firing squad of 14 peers and fired at, one shot at a time. That is justice, whatever any bleeding heart may have to say about it. Publicizing this execution may even have deep salutary effects on others thinking of perpetrating similar crimes. Society kills tens of thousands of innocents each day, allowing them to die of preventable causes because their death is convenient to the military-industrial complex that reaps profit and power from those deaths. And we should feel some obligation to keep alive a vicious murderer at public expense? But of course it’s not compassion that dictates keeping murderers alive, again, it’s the profit or publicity motive for certain individuals and groups.



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