Chapter 24 - Kveldulf's grief.

Kveldulf heard of his son Thorolf's death, and so deeply grieved was he at the tidings that he took to his bed from sorrow and age. Skallagrim came often to him, and talked with him; he bade him cheer up. 'Anything,' (he said) ' was more fitting than to become worthless and lie bedridden; better counsel is it that we seek to avenge Thorolf. Maybe we shall come across some of those who took part in his slaying; but if not that, yet there will be men whom we can reach, and thereby displease the king.'

Kveldulf sang a stave:

      'Thorolf in northern isle
      (O cruel Norns!) is dead:
      Too soon the Thunder-god
      Hath ta'en my warrior son.
      Thor's heavy wrestler, age,
      Holds my weak limbs from fray:
      Though keen my spirit spurs,
      No speedy vengeance mine.'

King Harold went that summer to Upland, and in the autumn westwards to Valres, and as far as Vors. Aulvir Hnuf was with the king, and often spoke with him about whether he would pay atonement for Thorolf, granting to Kveldulf and Skallagrim money compensation, or such honour as would content them. The king did not altogether refuse this, if father and son would come to him. Whereupon Aulvir started northwards for the Firths, nor stayed his journey till he came one evening to these twain. They received him gratefully, and he remained there for some time. Kveldulf questioned Aulvir closely about the doings at Sandness when Thorolf fell, what doughty deeds Thorolf had wrought before he fell, who smote him with weapon, where he received most wounds, what was the manner of his fall. Aulvir told him all that he asked; and that king Harold gave him the wound that was alone enough for his bane, and that Thorolf fell forward at the very feet of the king.

Then answered Kveldulf: 'Good is that thou tellest; for 'tis an old saw that he will be avenged who falls forward, and that vengeance will reach him who stands before him when he falls; yet is it unlikely that such good-fortune will be ours.'

Aulvir told father and son that he hoped, if they would go to the king and crave atonement, that it would be a journey to their honour; and he bade them venture this, adding many words to that end.

Kveldulf said he was too old to travel: 'I shall sit at home,' said he.

'Wilt thou go, Grim?' said Aulvir.

'I think I have no errand thither,' said Grim; 'I shall seem to the king not fluent in speech; nor do I think I shall long pray for atonement.'

Aulvir said that he would not need to do so: 'We will do all the speaking for thee as well as we can.'

And seeing that Aulvir pressed this matter strongly, Grim promised to go when he thought he could be ready. He and Aulvir set them a time when Grim should come to the king. Then Aulvir went away first, and returned to the king.


 



24. kafli - Hrygg Kveld-lfs.

Kveld-lfr spuri fall rlfs, sonar sns. Var hann hryggr vi essi tendi, sv at hann lagist rekkju af harmi ok elli.

Skalla-Grmr kom oft til hans ok tali fyrir honum, ba hann hressa sik, sagi, at allt var annat athfiligra en at at auvirast ok leggjast kr. "Er hitt heldr r, at vr leitim til hefnda eftir rlf. M vera, at vr komim fri vi nkkura menn, er verit hafa at falli rlfs. En ef at er eigi, munu eir vera menn, er vr munum n, er konungi mun sr ykkja mti skapi."

Kveld-lfr kva vsu:

      N frk norr eyju,
      norn erum grimm, til snimma
      undr kaus remja skyndi,
      rlf und lok fru.
      Ltumk ung at ingi
      rs fangvina at ganga,
      skjtt munat hefnt, tt hvettimk
      hugr, malm-Gnar brugit.

Haraldr konungr fr at sumar til Upplanda ok fr um haustit vestr Valdres ok allt Vors. lvir hnfa var me konungi ok kom oft ml vi konung, ef hann myndi vilja bta rlf, veita Kveld-lfi ok Skalla-Grmi fbtr ea mannsma ann nkkurn, er eir mtti vi una. Konungr varnai ess eigi me llu, ef eir fegar fri fund hans.

San byrjai lvir fer sna norr Fjru, ltti eigi fyrr en hann kom at kveldi dags til eira fega. Tku eir akksamliga vi honum. Dvalist hann ar nkkura hr.

Kveld-lfr spuri lvi vandliga fr atburum eim, er gerzt hfu Sandnesi, er rlfr fell, sv at v, hvat rlfr vann til frama, r hann felli, sv ok, hverir vpn bru hann ea hvar ,hann hafi mest sr ea hvernig fall hans yri. lvir sagi allt at, er hann spuri, sv at, at Haraldr konungr veitti honum sr at, er rit myndi eitt til bana, ok rlfr fell nr ftr konungi grfu.

svarar Kveld-lfr: "Vel hefir sagt, v at at hafa gamlir menn mlt, at ess manns myndi hefnt vera, ef hann felli grfu, ok eim nr koma hefndin, er fyrir yri, er hinn felli. En lklegt er, at oss veri eirar hamingju auit."

lvir sagi eim fegum, at hann vnti, ef eir vildi fara fund konungs ok leita eftir btum, at at myndi smafr vera, ok ba til ess htta ok lagi mrg or til.

Kveld-lfr sagi, at hann var hvergi frr fyrir elli sakar. "Mun ek vera heima," sagi hann.

"Vill fara, Grmr?" sagi lvir.

"Ekki erendi tla ek mik eiga," sagi Grmr. "Mun konungi ek ykkja ekki orsnjallr. tla ek mik ekki lengi munu bija btanna."

lvir sagi, at hann myndi ess eigi urfa. "Skulum vr mla allt fyrir hnd na, slkt er vr kunnum."

En me v at lvir stti at ml mjk, ht Grmr fer sinni, er hann ttist binn. Kvu eir lvir me sr stund, er Grmr skyldi koma konungs fund. Fr lvir fyrst brott ok til konungs.

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