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More Mushrooms

A Valheim Inspired One Shot

By Amanda StarksPublished 8 months ago Updated 8 months ago 4 min read
Official art work by IronGate Studios.

The heavy weight of the staff of frost in Izzoradelle’s hands made her arms shake. Again, she lifted it waist-height, channeling the foreign substance of eitr through her body and onto the cold surface of the wooden handle.

Again, nothing came out of the icy crystal adorning the staff’s tip.

A throaty laugh echoed in the empty meadow. “Norsemen and their silly expectations. Must you conquer every obstacle before you?”

Shut it, Dwarf!” Izzora snapped, grunting as she tried to summon the ice magic once more, but to no avail.

The dwarf in question chewed on a stalk of wheat, his mage’s hat drooping on the left side of his head. His light blue eyes glowed with mirth.

“Maybe if we stuff you full of those magical mushrooms, you will be able to summon a little breeze.”

Izzora groaned, dropping the staff like it was several cut logs. Her arms sagged at her sides. “Gods, no more mushrooms, please.”

The dwarf laughed once more. “Ah, let me see the staff, girl.”

Izzora glared at the magical weapon and kicked it in the dwarf’s direction, flattening the meadow grass as it went. “It’s gotta be defective. That’s the only explanation-”

As soon as the Dwarf touched the staff, the crystal lit up. Holding it high at his side, the light continued to pour from the crystal until a sound like heavy arrows firing off signaled the release of the frost magic. The shards of ice sang over Izzora’s head and pierced a tree on the far side of the meadow, leaving blue marks on the trunk.

“Nope. It’s the mushrooms,” the dwarven mage confirmed, grinning from ear to ear.

Izzora sagged further and sat, a long defeated sigh leaving her chest. “It’s hopeless then.”

“Hmm,” the dwarf regarded the Norse woman and the staff in one sweep of his eyes. “Might I ask a personal question?”

Izzora waved her hand, her white hair sticking to the sides of her head and face in wild tangles. “Sure.”

“What drives you to use this staff?”

Izzora narrowed her gaze, her glowing blue eyes dimming. “To defeat Odin’s enemies. Why else?”

“I’ve only known you for a short time, but you’ve never given off the impression that you were Odin’s puppet.”

Izzora flinched, remaining silent.

The dwarf walked to her side, eyeing the yellow cloak on her back. “As a...Skalding, you seek the truth of the realm, yes? Odin and his warriors are of little concern to you.”

“They shouldn’t be,” Izzora said. “I should be wanting the fight, the glory, the comradery of being with other Vikings day in and day out.”

“But you do not?”

“No, I don’t...and then I do. If only to feel like I belong, but I don’t like it.”

The dwarf sits, resting the staff in his lap and considering the woman’s contrasting words. “You prefer to be alone then? It’s not an uncommon thing for my people. Think of Haldor! He’s doing fine!

The corner of Izzora’s lips quirked up, but her gaze remained heavy and dark.

“Is Haldor still welcome? In your villages? In your homes?”

“Of course, he is-”

“Does anyone ask after him? Think about him? Heed his words or his presence after weeks, months, years away?”

The dwarf paused for a long while, and Izzora had her answer.

But the Dwarf was not finished. “Haldor is still happy. He has found purpose, and knows the love of his own heart, even when alone.”

Izzora was silent for several heartbeats, watching the sunlight play on the blades of grass around her legs and feet.

“So...problems of the heart...can they stifle magic?”

The dwarf nodded, his red beard shifting on his chin as he spoke. “Oh yes. Very much so. It’s not as easy as eating some mushrooms and pumping out eitr, despite what your comrades believed. There is a personal component as well.”

Izzora sighed and pushed up onto her knees, eyeing the frost staff once more. “Well, it won’t help just sitting here. Where should I start, dwarf?”

The dwarf huffed, passing the staff to Izzora’s hands. “First, more mushrooms.”

____

AUTHOR'S NOTE:

Another little Valheim inspired story. This one was one of the last I wrote before I left the server I was a member of. I hope you enjoyed this fun character study! c:

Also ( editing Amanda here ) forgot to link my catalogue here for those who haven't read my other Valheim-inspired pieces! Enjoy!

SeriesShort StoryHumorFantasy

About the Creator

Amanda Starks

Lover of the dark, fantastical, and heart-wrenching. Fantasy writer, poet, and hopefully soon-to-be novelist who wants to create safe spaces to talk about mental health. Subscribe to my free newsletter at www.amandastarks.com for updates!

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Comments (3)

  • Kenny Penn7 months ago

    Love this little story, Amanda! Really get a sense of the larger world beyond it, and of course mushrooms will help with magic! 😂

  • Problems of the heart stifle magic. I wonder if it's physically or emotionally. Loved your story and the name Izzoradelle!

  • Mackenzie Davis8 months ago

    How mysterious. I’m intrigued what matter of the heart ails Izzora. The magic, all of the details, it’s all so vivid and I want more!

Amanda StarksWritten by Amanda Starks

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