The Children of Odin The Book of Northern Myths

Page: 74

Suddenly the river began to rise. Loki and the young Giant would have been swept away only Thor gripped both of them. Higher and higher the river rose, and rougher and rougher it became. Thor had to plant his feet firmly on the bottom or he and the two he held would have been swept down by the flood. He struggled[Pg 160] across, holding Loki and the young Giant. A mountain ash grew out of the bank, and, while the two held to him, he grasped it with his hands. The river rose still higher, but Thor was able to draw Loki and the young Giant to the bank, and then he himself scrambled up on it.

Now looking up the river he saw a sight that filled him with rage. A Giantess was pouring a flood into it. This it was that was making the river rise and seethe. Thor pulled a rock out of the bank and hurled it at her. It struck her and flung her into the flood. Then she struggled out of the water and went yelping away. This Giantess was Gialp, Gerriöd's ugly and evil daughter.

Nothing would do the young Giant whom Thor had helped across but that the pair would go and visit Grid, his mother, who lived in a cave in the hillside. Loki would not go and was angered to hear that Thor thought of going. But Thor, seeing that the Giant youth was friendly, was willing enough to go to Grid's dwelling.

"Go then, but get soon to Gerriöd's dwelling yonder. I will wait for you there," said Loki. He watched Thor go up the hillside to Grid's cave. He waited until he saw Thor come back down the hillside and go toward Gerriöd's dwelling. He watched Thor go into the house where, as he thought, death awaited him. Then in a madness for what he had done, Loki, with his head drawn down on his shoulders, started running like a bird along the ground.

Grid, the old Giantess, was seated on the floor of the cave grinding corn between two stones. "Who is it?" she[Pg 161] said, as her son led Thor within. "One of the Æsir! What Giant do you go to injure now, Asa Thor?"

"I go to injure no Giant, old Grid," Thor replied. "Look upon me! Cannot you see that I have not Miölnir, my mighty hammer, with me, nor my belt, nor my gloves of iron?"

"But where in Jötunheim do you go?"

"To the house of a friendly Giant, old Grid—to the house of Gerriöd."

"Gerriöd a friendly Giant! You are out of your wits, Asa Thor. Is he not out of his wits, my son—this one who saved you from the flood, as you say?"

"Tell him of Gerriöd, old mother," said the Giant youth.

"Do not go to his house, Asa Thor. Do not go to his house."