Chapter 26 - Sigurd comes to the Giukings and is wedded to Gudrun
Now Sigurd goes his ways with all that great treasure, and in friendly wise he departs from them; and on Grani he rides with all his war-gear and the burden
withal; and thus he rides until he comes to the hall of King Giuki; there he rides into the burg, and that sees one of the king's men, and he spake withal--
"Sure it may be deemed that here is come one of the Gods, for his array is all done with gold, and his horse is far mightier than other horses, and the manner
of his weapons is most exceeding goodly, and most of all the man himself far excels all other men ever seen."
So the king goes out with his court and greets the man, and asks--
"Who art thou who thus ridest into my burg, as none has durst hitherto without the leave of my sons?"
He answered, "I am called Sigurd, son of King Sigmund."
Then said King Giuki, "Be thou welcome here then, and take at our hands whatso thou wiliest."
So he went into the king's hall, and all men seemed little beside him, and all men served him, and there he abode in great joyance.
Now oft they all ride abroad together, Sigurd and Gunnar and Hogni, and ever is Sigurd far the foremost of them, mighty men of their hands though they were.
But Grimhild finds how heartily Sigurd loved Brynhild, and how oft he talks of her; and she falls to thinking how well it were, if he might abide there and wed
the daughter of King Giuki, for she saw that none might come anigh to his goodliness, and what faith and goodhelp there was in him, and how that he had more
wealth withal than folk might tell of any man; and the king did to him even as unto his own sons, and they for their parts held him of more worth than
So on a night as they sat at the drink, the queen arose, and went before Sigurd, and said--
"Great joy we have in thine abiding here, and all good things will we put before thee to take of us; lo now, take this horn and drink thereof."
So he took it and drank, and therewithal she said, "Thy father shall be Giuki the king, and I shall be thy mother, and Gunnar and Hogni shall be thy brethren,
and all this shall be sworn with oaths each to each; and then surely shall the like of you never be found on earth."
Sigurd took her speech well, for with the drinking of that drink all memory of Brynhild departed from him. So there he abode awhile.
And on a day went Grimhild to Giuki the king, and cast her arms about his neck, and spake--
"Behold, there has now come to us the greatest of great hearts that the world holds; and needs must he be trusty and of great avail; give him thy daughter then,
with plenteous wealth, and as much of rule as he will; perchance thereby he will be well content to abide here ever."
The king answered, "Seldom does it befall that kings offer their daughters to any; yet in higher wise will it be done to offer her to this man, than to take
lowly prayers to her from others."
On a night Gudrun pours out the drink, and Sigurd beholds her how fair she is and how full of all courtesy.
Five seasons Sigurd abode there, and ever they passed their days together in good honour and friendship.
And so it befell that the king held talk together, and Giuki said--
"Great good thou givest us, Sigurd, and with exceeding strength thou strengthenest our realm."
Then Gunnar said, "All things that may be will we do for thee, so thou abidest here long; both dominion shall thou have, and our sister freely and unprayed
for, whom another man would not get for all his prayers."
Sigurd says, "Thanks have ye for this wherewith; ye honour me, and gladly will I take the same."
Therewith they swore brotherhood together, and to be even as if they were children of one father and one mother; and a noble feast was holden, and endured many
days, and Sigurd drank at the wedding of him and Gudrun; and there might men behold all manner of game and glee, and each day the feast was better and better.
Now fare these folk wide over the world, and do many great deeds, and slay many kings' sons, and no man has ever done such works of prowess as did they; then
home they come again with much wealth won in war.
Sigurd gave of the serpent's heart to Gudrun, and she ate thereof, and became greater-hearted, and wiser than ere before: and the son of these twain was called
Now on a time went Grimhild to Gunnar her son, and spake--
"Fair blooms the life and fortune of thee, but for one thing only, and namely whereas thou art unwedded; go woo Brynhild; good rede is this, and Sigurd will
ride with thee."
Gunnar answered, "Fair in she certes, and I am fain enow to win her;" and therewith he tells his father, and his brethren, and Sigurd, and they all prick him
on to that wooing.
Sigurðr ríðr nú í brott með þat mikla gull. Skiljast þeir nú vinir. Hann ríðr Grana með öllum sínum herbúnaði ok farmi. Hann ríðr, þar til er hann kom at höll
Gjúka konungs; ríðr nú í borgina, ok þat sér einn af konungsmönnum ok mælti:
"Þat hygg ek, at hér fari einn af goðunum. Þessi maðr er allr við gull búinn. Hestr hans er miklu meiri en aðrir hestar, ok afburðarvænn vápnabúnaðr. Hann er langt
um aðra menn fram, en sjálfr berr hann þó mest af öðrum mönnum."
Konungrinn gengr út með hirð sína ok kvaddi manninn ok spyrr:
"Hverr ertu, er ríðr í borgina, er engi þorði nema at leyfi sona minna?"
Hann svarar: "Ek heiti Sigurðr, ok em ek sonr Sigmundar konungs."
Gjúki konungr mælti: "Vel skaltu hér kominn með oss, ok þigg hér slíkt, sem þú vilt."
Ok hann gengr inn í höllina, ok váru allir lágir hjá honum, ok allir þjónuðu honum, ok var hann þar í miklu yfirlæti. Þeir ríða allir saman, Sigurðr ok Gunnarr ok
Högni, ok þó er Sigurðr fyrir þeim um alla atgervi, ok eru þó allir miklir menn fyrir sér. Þat finnr Grímhildr, hvé mikit Sigurðr ann Brynhildi ok hvé opt hann
getr hennar; hugsar fyrir sér, at þat væri meiri gifta, at hann staðfestist þar ok ætti dóttur Gjúka konungs, ok sá, at engi mátti við hann jafnast, sá ok, hvert
traust at honum var, ok hafði ofr fjár, miklu meira en menn vissi dæmi til. Konungr var við hann sem við sonu sína, en þeir virðu hann framar en sik.
Eitt kveld, er þeir sátu við drykk, ríss drottning upp ok gekk fyrir Sigurð ok kvaddi hann ok mælti:
"Fögnuðr er oss á þinni hérvist, ok allt gott viljum vér til yðar leggja. Tak hér við horni ok drekk."
Hann tók við ok drakk af. Hún mælti:
"Þinn faðir skal vera Gjúki konungr, en ek móðir, bræðr þínir Gunnarr ok Högni ok allir, er eiða vinnið, ok munu þá eigi yðrir jafningjar fást."
Sigurðr tók því vel, ok við þann drykk mundi hann ekki til Brynhildar. Hann dvaldist þar um hríð. Ok eitt sinn gekk Grímhildr fyrir Gjúka konung ok lagði hendr um
háls honum ok mælti:
"Hér er nú kominn inn mesti kappi, er finnast mun í veröldu. Væri at honum mikit traust. Gift honum dóttur þína með miklu fé ok slíku ríki sem hann vill, ok mætti
hann hér yndi nema."
"Fátítt er þat at bjóða fram dætr sínar, en meiri vegr er at bjóða honum en aðrir biði."
Ok eitt kveld skenkir Guðrún. Sigurðr sér, at hún er væn kona ok at öllu in kurteisasta.
Fimm misseri var Sigurðr þar, svá at þeir sátu með frægð ok vingan, ok ræðast konungar nú við. Gjúki konungr mælti:
"Margt gott veitir þú oss, Sigurðr, ok mjök hefir þú styrkt várt ríki."
Gunnarr mælti: "Allt viljum vér til vinna, at þér dvelizt hér lengi, bæði ríki ok vára systur með boði, en eigi mundi annarr fá, þótt bæði."
Sigurðr svarar: "Hafið þökk fyrir yðra sæmd, ok þetta skal þiggja."
Þeir sverjast nú í bræðralag, sem þeir sé sambornir bræðr. Nú er ger ágætlig veizla ok stóð marga daga. Drekkr Sigurðr nú brúðlaup til Guðrúnar. Mátti þar sjá margs
konar gleði ok skemmtan, ok var hvern dag veitt öðrum betr. Þeir fóru nú víða um lönd ok vinna mörg frægðarverk, drápu marga konungasonu, ok engir menn gerðu slík
afrek sem þeir; fara nú heim með miklu herfangi.
Sigurðr gaf Guðrúnu at eta af Fáfnis hjarta, ok síðan var hún miklu grimmari en áðr ok vitrari. Þeira sonr hét Sigmundr. Ok eitt sinn gekk Grímhildr at Gunnari,
syni sínum, ok mælti:
"Yðart ráð stendr með miklum blóma fyrir utan einn hlut, er þér eruð kvánlausir. Biðið Brynhildar. Þat er göfgast ráð, ok mun Sigurðr ríða með yðr."
Gunnarr svarar: "Víst er hún væn, ok eigi em ek þessa ófúss," ok segir nú feðr sínum ok bræðrum ok Sigurði, ok eru allir fýsandi.