“Contract Negotiations” by Field T. Mouse
I really enjoyed this “trickster tale” of sorts, even if Ratatoskr’s goal was a humbling one. Usually, with trickster tales, the main intention of the “trickster” is to cause mischief and come out on top (they usually don’t). These also tend to be humorous stories as well. In Norse mythology, while Ratatoskr is more of a messenger than a trickster figure, he does tend to spread gossip or lies–be it for the hell of it or out of anger. (This information is based on the short introduction that gave some context on the characters and how they fit within their culture’s mythos). The author integrated this well.
I don’t claim to know much about Norse mythology aside from the few major gods or worlds, such as Thor, Odin, Loki, Valhalla, Midgard, Odin’s ravens, the giant tree Yggdrasil, and the Nidhogg. (The latter two are included in this story). Thankfully, you don’t need to know much about Norse mythology to enjoy the characters. I liked Nidhogg’s clueless, and might I say adorable, character, despite being a scaling, soul-eating, feral dragon. I liked how the unnamed Eagle was puffed-up, stoic, egotistical, yet at the end of the story, you get a sense that he has a heart. Again, I’m not mythology buff, but I wouldn’t be surprised if these portrayals of these gods aren’t too far off from their original counterparts.
This was an enjoyable story overall. It was funny, sweet, had relatable characters, has a simple yet semi-familiar setting, and integrated a cool mythology.