“We can talk because, O mortal child—do not be afraid—beneath these animal disguises we wear…well, not actual disguises, I mean we are actually a bear and a fox and a big bird, which is a rotten sort of thing to happen, but where was I…?”
“Gods!” screeched the eagle.
“Gods?” said Odd.
“Aye. Gods,” said the bear. “I was just getting to that. I am great Thor, Lord of the Thunders. The eagle is Lord Odin, All-father, greatest of the Gods. And this runt-eared meddling fox is—”
“Loki,” said the fox smoothly. “Blood-brother to the Gods. Smartest, sharpest, most brilliant of all the inhabitants of Asgard, or so they say—”
“Brilliant?” snorted the bear.
“You would have fallen for it. Anyone would,” said the fox.
“Fallen for what?” said Odd.
A flash of green eyes, a sigh and the fox began. “I’ll tell you. And you’ll see. It could have happened to anyone. So, Asgard. Home of the mighty. In the middle of a plain, surrounded by an impregnable wall built for us by a Frost Giant. And it was due to me, I should add, that that wall did not cost us the Giant’s fee, which was unreasonably high.”
“Freya,” said the bear. “The Giant wanted Freya. Most lovely of the Goddesses—with, obviously, the exception of Sif, my own little love. And it wanted the Sun and the Moon.”
“If you interrupt me one more time,” said the fox, “one more time, I will not only stop talking, but I shall go off on my own and leave the two of you to fend for yourselves.”
The bear said, “Yes, but—”
“Not one word.”
The bear was silent.
odd and the frost giants (color) by lunchboxmonkey (dA)