Trying to get back into writing and doing a dozen other things at the same time. This is inspired by Sue Vincent’s photo prompt.
It also fits the Daily Post prompt, voyage, so here goes, killing two birds with one stone.
Their fathers had slaughtered the monks when they arrived at the settlement. Their longship had glided up the estuary on the windswept coast like a grass snake through the rushes, and the battle was short and fierce. It was a good place, hidden from sight of the sea by a line of low hills, and sentinels had such a view across the broad river valley that invaders would never surprise it. If, of course they thought to keep watch, which the previous inhabitants hadn’t.
Times were quieter now and the sons of the sea wolves were farmers and homesteaders in this peaceful place, where the winters were mild and the land rich. They had even adopted some of the local beliefs and built their own place of worship of the dead god, the man on the tree, because he reminded them of Thor, the oak tree god. They worked dragons and sea serpents, longships and merpeople into the carvings that decorated the entrance to the holy place, and they set amulets and spells into the great door that protected it.
Twenty years after the invasion, the first monks dared to return, brandishing their crucifixes of the dead god. They chopped down the holy oak tree that grew by the door and flung open the heavy door. The tree god was angry, and the amulets screamed vengeance, but the monks, in their ignorance, couldn’t hear. Pale-faced and hostile, they marched into the holy place, and the door, when it closed behind them, muffled the sound of their screaming.