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Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 02 Jul 2020 3:45 AM Title: Chapter 23

She has really grown into her role in her new culture:  


‘I knew I had to witness this, if nothing else than to relay it to Tonna, whose injuries were being tended to and to assure her that her tormentor of a husband was truly gone…’


 


An absolutely chilling speech by Edvard over Jamarr’s corpse.  And THEN, the corpse not only gets beheaded, but has an iron stake driven through it.  Echoes of all sorts of vampire and zombie legends.    


 


It made me wonder what the burial of Jamarr’s co-conspirators was like.  Would Edvard and the others only have paid this much attention to the leader?


 


I liked Bella’s solution to Edvard and Beni arguing over who should carry Bella back to Einarr’s house.  


 


Poor Jutta!  Not only has she turned out to be one of several bed thralls for Miki, but she’s been through this horrible time with Jamarr’s men – no wonder she misses her mother!


Wonderful:  ‘ I knew I had no power to order her released from Miki’s service, but Jutta wanted to be with her mother, and I would be damned if I did not at least attempt to bring her home with us.’


And it’s good that Edvard notices this:  “She cringes away from men now . . . even me.”


 


Lovely, at the assembly:  ‘He was standing, holding out his hand for me to join him at the head of the long table. He had risen for me – in front of everyone.’


 


Wow, the role of an ally is demanding:  “I will remain until Einarr’s return and help him dispense justice on the traitors before returning.”


No matter how much Edvard would rather go home.  But it’s true, Einarr’s village has been so decimated and traumatized, it doesn’t seem wise to leave them on their own.


 


That’s nice that at least the wedding has been moved up.  The original plan was to give them something to celebrate in the dark days of winter, but the village could use something to celebrate now.


 


Sweet, Bella to Edvard:  “You are . . . so very kind. I wish more people knew it.”


 


Interesting, Edvard thinks some of his men will stay at Einarr’s village:


“The unwed ones, most likely,” he confirmed, “the ones who have few attachments or no land of their own. There are widows here now and lands that need farming.”


 


Tonna certainly had an inventive idea of how to escape the future she doesn’t want. 


 


Ugh:  “Tonna is an unwed woman and therefore under [Miki’s] authority.”  So even a widowed woman has no autonomy.  They would probably think of it as protection.


 


I’m sure Bella’s right about how Tonna’s story will be told:  ‘Such a rare event would make for a good story to tell around the hearth in the deep of winter— its conclusion, obviously, being the death of a foolhardy woman who behaved too much like a man.’


 


I loved that when Bella tries to plead Tonna’s case, what she gets from Edvard is “Trust me”.  A test for her.  


 


Beautifully described:  ‘Edvard was a sight to behold: Tall, well-muscled and broad shouldered, his green eyes alert and his hair pulled back at the nape of his neck, he was dressed simply in a tunic and trousers to ease his movements, feeling no need for armor or padded clothing against such an obviously inferior opponent.’


 


Good exchange with Jutta before the combat:


“What are the rules?” … 


“The strongest, luckiest one survives.”


Oh.


 


I wonder if the offer for someone to barter for Tonna’s forfeited life was a common practice, or Edvard’s invention for the moment.  This is good:  ‘If Miki bartered for his sister’s life it would not change her circumstances, but rather force her to remain in a place where she was despised by nearly everyone.’


I enjoyed that Bella and Edvard made a performance of the bartering, adding to the story that would be told.


 


Sniffle:  ‘…Jutta and I tended to the defeated warrior within the privacy of our bed chamber, feeding her and urging her to rest, promising her that she could let herself sleep without fear, that all three of us could.’  The things we take for granted today!


 


A lovely final image, the three women in the ship looking toward home.  So well done!!


 


As you say, we’re so close to the end!  I hope your health, your circumstances, and your muse provide you the time and motivation to keep writing.  Whenever you get to it, we’ll be here eagerly waiting.

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 22 Jun 2020 5:33 AM Title: Chapter 22

Poor baby:  ‘I was finally able to force this chapter out, one excruciating word after another.’  I hope you realize how much we appreciate the effort!  And for the record, the chapter doesn’t show any signs of being dragged through a knot-hole (maybe I should find a less folksy idiom?).


 


I was intrigued by all the strategy the men have to deal with.  I’m sure the bit about capturing the party looking for Bella before they find out Edvard’s party is around, is a minor one.  Their approach to Einarr’s village – while minimizing casualties - is pretty complicated.  Clearly strength and bravery aren’t enough, they have to be clever too.


 


That was nerve-wracking when Beni and Bella are waiting – in the dark – while Edvard and his men go after the search party.  


 


This is an awful thought:    "You would have passed me by had the dogs not sniffed me out.”  It’s hard to imagine how that could have ended well.  


 


Aww, how sad that Lina didn’t survive the outlaws’ attack on Edvard’s village.  ‘Lina would rather have died than be taken away.’  Understandable.


 


It was also interesting to watch Edvard’s group put together details from Bella’s and Emundi’s knowledge of the attackers, to come up with the best plan.


 


That was a good parallel to the Eclipse notion that Edward and Bella should not be separated when circumstances are dangerous.


 


Good for Bella, asking for her own weapon:  ‘I had killed before, and if I had to, I would again. I would stop at nothing to free the women held by the outlaws.’ 


(Even better later when she demands Jutta get a weapon too.)


 


Well said:  ‘I had seen too much to remain unaltered, but I believed this to be a good thing. Once I wed Edvard, I would assume a position of at least a little power, and I intended to put it to good use.’


 


What a relief when Bella comes up with a way to calm the terrified women and children.


 


There’s something so sexy about this image:  ‘"Are your husbands away with Einarr?" Edvard asked, taking a knee at my side.’


Of course this is not the moment to get distracted by the hotness…


 


Interesting:  the men ‘were swiftly dealt with, the outlaws killed and the traitors restrained and gagged. Their fate would be decided by Einarr upon his return…’  I guess that’s what Edvard would want in Einarr’s place, to have the final say if any of his men betrayed him.


 


Brilliant, when Beni has been drawn away and another outlaw is headed for Bella and Jutta:  ‘Edvard charged him so fast, it seemed as though his feet never touched the ground, and he looked every bit an avenging god.’


 


Wow, this is a pretty damning fate on its own, re Jamarr:


"He is cursed. No one will speak his name again. Ever."


 


Impressive that Edvard leaves Laugi’s fate in Bella’s hands, since she saw firsthand how he behaved.  She asks Laugi how well he treated Jutta:


"But she is only a thrall."


With those words, he sealed his own fate. …


"Kill him," I simply said. "A man like him does not deserve to live."


Whoa.  And then Jutta gets to choose the method of execution.  


 


Such a sweet ending when Bella asks Edvard to take her home:


"My beauty," he said, his voice low and soft and meant only for me, "the gods themselves could not stop me."


 

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 13 Jun 2020 3:44 AM Title: Chapter 21

Yes, Bella’s really in a pickle now, in Jamarr’s bedroom with his dead body and blood all over her.  ‘The men had not seemed particularly loyal to Jamarr, but I found it difficult to believe they would congratulate me on killing their leader.’  We’d probably be back to the principle of Einarr’s men being glad to see Tonna put in her place.


 


Wonderful, it even made me tear up a little:  “May the gods be with you, Tonna. Valhalla will gain a fierce shield maiden.”


How ironic that the one person to really understand and value Tonna was one she thought of as a “foreign whore”.


 


Geez, I can hardly imagine wearing a long dress, wrapped in a fur, running through unfamiliar fields and forests as it grows dark.  Oh yes, while notably pregnant!  Must be pure adrenaline.


 


It made me smile that Bella assumes she must have died in her sleep – and Edvard too on his journey - to see him again.  ‘Was this Heaven or Valhalla? I did not care.’


 


What a time for Edvard to find out about Bella’s pregnancy!


 


Oh, Edvard and his men think it was Einarr who attacked their village.  What a story Bella has to tell.  And finally, she gets to collapse in Edvard’s safe arms as she relives the last few days.


 


Lovely:  ‘In the moonlight, his eyes looked silver, his face taking on an other-earthly glow. In that moment I would have believed him, had he told me he were, in fact, a god come down to earth. No mortal man could possibly be built so strongly with a face so beautifully sculpted as his. It did not seem plausible that he should be real, that he should be mine.’


 


And then Edvard’s story, that Bella had called to him in his dreams!  A nice echo back to canon, that Edvard tried to keep her safe from Jamarr but ultimately failed.  Shudder, he thinks Jamarr may even have succeeded in violating her.  


 


Aww:  ‘All that remained was bliss as he kissed me, his mouth gently tentative, his scent and warmth reviving almost forgotten parts of me.’


 


Go, Bella!  “I am well. But there are others who are not. We must save them, Edvard. All of them.”


 


A most welcome chapter, ending with Bella and baby safe with Edvard and Emundi.  

Reviewer: BKris29 Signed [Report This]
Date: 07 Jun 2020 7:58 PM Title: Chapter 23

It has been one hell of a journey with your vikings..... I hope you have been doing well in these difficult times... I hope you and your family are safe and healthy.

This review is just a reminder and I would love if you could reply as to how you are doing right..... It's almost like you are the Loki to our Edvard and Bella and to us.

But still we loved this long and ardous journey.

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 30 May 2020 5:22 AM Title: Chapter 20

I forgot how fast this story moves!  Two chapters ago Bella’s main problem was having to send Edvard away if he wanted a booty call.  Now she’s not only been kidnapped along with other village women, but there’s this unholy alliance of Tonna and Jamarr!


 


For hardly knowing any of these people, Bella does a good job scoping out who’s who.  So this must be Einarr’s village she’s been taken to.  


 


This is so tough, but she manages:


‘Never before had I felt such a surge of rage in my blood, and I clenched my fists, forcing myself to stand still before [Jamarr] and not foolishly launch myself at him to scratch his eyes out.’


Her family would be proud.


 


OMG, Jamarr had wanted Ro-se too!  


 


Interesting twist, that the men did not bargain for abducting the betrothed of the chieftain!  Thank goodness Laugi stood his ground and argued for his own strategy.  “We will vote on it.”  Not part of Jamarr’s plan!  A good sign:  ‘…all them seemingly unafraid of ridiculing their so-called chieftain.’


 


Hmm, if Bella had not managed to get free of Jamarr in that moment, who knows how differently this might all have gone?  


 


A welcome moment of levity:  “This one here is likely to bite your kokkr off, in any event. Let Edvard Karlsson worry about losing his manhood.”


 


Oh geez, Tonna married Jamarr??  I’m guessing she really wanted no part of HIS kokkr. 


 


Jutta provides some valuable perspective, having seen the takeover of Einarr’s house.  How scary that Miki has been “injured”.  I can imagine him standing up for his master.  


 


So Tonna has made a heroic choice:  “…Jamarr betrayed her. He made her choose who was to marry him, her or her younger sister. Tonna chose herself. She would not subject her sister to his violent ways.”


 


Aggravating but entirely believable:  Einarr’s remaining men were not loyal to Tonna.  


“No man will follow the leadership of a woman, Bella. They like that she has been subdued. They have no honor.”


I bet they are happy to see her “put in her place”.


 


Hmm, so Jutta is skeptical that Edvard will fight the outlaws:


“They have taken mostly thralls and will ransom you and the few other free women.”


So that thing about having to compensate the owner for a thrall doesn’t apply when they’re kidnapped?  


 


I hope Bella’s right:  ‘I knew his heart. He would not abandon anyone – free or thrall – to the cruelty of Jamarr’s leadership.’


 


Yikes:  ‘The men here were nothing but animals, every bit the savages I had believed Vikings to be before coming to Edvard’s village.’


 


And now Bella understands that to protect her pregnancy she has to escape as soon as possible.  That won’t be easy.


 


The description of Tonna’s state after being alone with Jamarr was chilling.  It must have been extreme to draw this reaction from Bella:


‘She had tried to separate me from Edvard, called me a foreign whore, and even formed an alliance with Jamarr to obtain power for herself, but all I could feel was pity when I looked upon her now, the husk of a woman she had become under the foot of a cruel and violent husband. I knew her life. I had lived it myself.’


 


Jamarr seems to enjoy telling Bella what Tonna’s role was in his rise to power.  Quite a moment:  


“She deserves this, does she not?” he asked me, his eyes glinting with madness, “for betraying her own family.”


… “No one deserves this. No one.”


 


I bet:  ‘…having to witness the cruelty of Jamarr and the rest of the men and being unable to stop them was soul-shattering…’


 


Makes sense that some of the other outlaws who have been called to join Jamarr, would rather have a fresh start in a new land than an ongoing feud with the other chieftains.


 


Tonna’s desperation seems understandable.  She must believe that it would matter to the other men if it was known how cruel Jamarr was to her?  After all she is a free woman, from a prominent family.  


 


Good perspective, compared to what we think of as freedom:


“You are a free woman,” I said.


“I am free to marry and free to bear children, nothing more.”


I’ll take my life, thank you very much!


 


Definitely an unexpected twist, that Tonna agrees to help Bella get away.  Then she fights like a tiger – a skilled tiger.  Wow, what an action scene!  And who knew having had to sacrifice the goat would come in so handy.  A shallow cut would have been useless.


 


Yeah, Annie and Aretha are the perfect soundtrack for this moment.  But Tonna and Bella are definitely not out of the woods yet.  “Eeek” is somewhat of an understatement!


 

Reviewer: Mannco Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 May 2020 6:29 PM Title: Chapter 23

I have come back to this story to reread it with the hope that you will finish the last three chapters (from what you have said, two chapters and the epilogue). I hope that you are safe and healthy with all that is going on in the world today. I pray that you are able to bring this story to it's  rightful Viking closure so much sooner rather than later. Prayers for you and your family to be safe and healthy!! 

Reviewer: Mannco Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 May 2020 6:29 PM Title: Chapter 23

I have come back to this story to reread it with the hope that you will finish the last three chapters (from what you have said, two chapters and the epilogue). I hope that you are safe and healthy with all that is going on in the world today. I pray that you are able to bring this story to it's  rightful Viking closure so much sooner rather than later. Prayers for you and your family to be safe and healthy!! 

Reviewer: charlieromeo Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 May 2020 9:18 PM Title: Chapter 1

I love re reading this story 

 

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 23 May 2020 4:27 AM Title: Chapter 19

I’m so sorry to hear about your Mom.  However hard it may have been, I bet you will never regret having been there with her.


 


I sure remember THIS chapter, too.  Edvard slips away on the ship, and by the end of the next chapter all hell breaks loose!


 


Aarrggh, it’s so unfair that she has to keep her pregnancy to herself!  Thankfully, though, by the end of the chapter, she finds a friendly confidante.


 


Sweet, for Arndis’s child:  ‘We sewed and wove tiny shifts and soft hats together, and I delighted secretly in the knowledge that I would soon do the same for my own child. ‘


 


‘Men had no place in the house when a child came into the world.’  That was true enough in Western cultures a few decades ago!


 


Oh that’s right, this is Beni’s first biological child.


 


Clever, an escape route!  If the attackers were Vikings from other villages, though, they might have known and guarded these other exits.  Didn’t seem to happen this time.  


 


Wow, Bella showed such courage, giving Arndis and her children a chance to escape. 


 


Smart girl:  ‘Let them believe me meek and docile. Perhaps that would make escape possible later.’


This is the second time in her brief life that she’s been kidnapped from her home.


 


Do I understand this right, some of the attackers were just keeping the village men busy, and ran back into the forest instead of boarding the ships?  Allies, then.  Ugh.


 


Sigh, after she defends the other captured woman:  ‘I had saved neither her nor myself. I had only delayed the inevitable.’


 


Tonna and Jamarr!  What are they doing together??  This can't be good.

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 17 May 2020 4:47 AM Title: Chapter 18

Oh I’ve been dreading this chapter!  But you couldn’t very well write a historically informed story about stay-at-home Vikings!


 


Good question, Bella to Arndis:  ‘“What did you say to Beni the first time he left?” I asked.’


Really she’s so lucky to have Arndis to model the appropriate behavior, plus she’s smart enough to learn from Arndis.


 


So difficult:  ‘Edvard would not experience having to leave a feeble, wailing girl. He would depart knowing that he would return to a strong Norse woman, who would spend their time apart preparing their wedding and learning her role of being a chief’s wife.  Yes. It had to be so.’


Plus, she has a lot to prove to the village, that’s she’s suited to be their chief’s wife.


 


Fun scene at the kvenna hus, especially once Bella realizes they really are interested in her back story.  But OMG, when she says in Britain women can “give her life to her god”, they think she means being sacrificed!  


 


I enjoyed that when Bella acknowledged that she was raised with only one god, and a male at that:


“Then it is no wonder our gods brought you here.  …  Here you have Freja to pray to and she has helped you win the affection of our chief.”


 


Excellent:  “…no man would dare enter this dangerous place.” 


 


Things have changed so much – their parting conversation:  ‘This was all wrong! We were behaving like strangers, having polite conversation.’  How refreshing that he was the one to break:


“My beauty,” he whispered. “Are you not at all sad to see me go? Do you not feel as I do?”


 


Interesting that Bella has not been to the harbor since her arrival.  She certainly sees it through new eyes now.  Thankfully she manages to hold it together as the ships leave.


 


Oh, sad that she can’t even tell Arndis she’s pregnant, since she has been officially re-virginized.  I imagine Ester and Ro-se would want to know too!

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 12 May 2020 4:55 AM Title: Chapter 17

This chapter is such fun, because Bella gets an entirely new angle on her new life and her homeland.


 


A nice scene with Bella and Arndis:  ‘I felt immense gratitude for her kindness and vowed to myself that I would find time to make a beautiful dress for her to replace the one she had given me.’


 


Interesting:  ‘Arndis spoke no cruel or harsh words when giving orders, but was not as friendly with the thralls as Ester and Ro-se had been. Perhaps she needed that distance, having had once been a thrall herself?’


Bella seems to be wise enough to take her cue from Arndis’ behavior.


 


How strange it would be to live in the same house as Edvard’s son by Arndis!


 


Wow, a real do-over:  "Bella," Arndis said quietly. "You are, for all intents and purposes, a maiden once more."


 


It’s fairly shocking, though, that as a “maiden”, her honor, her sexual choices, belong to her brother more than to her. Not that this is unusual, of course, just such a contrast to her status as a thrall.


 


Well thank goodness Arndis tells her what is expected of her, before she can make a mistake:  ‘Now I knew that it would be my responsibility to keep all of us safe by denying Edvard.’  I like how she reasons through what Edvard’s ultimate motivation would be.


 


Yeah:  ‘I was now a free woman, and yet I had never felt more as a piece of livestock being auctioned off.’


 


Nicely said:  ‘My heart pounded furiously and my thoughts flitted about as though they had sprouted wings.’


 


Geez what a complicated set of transactions!  But it’s heartening that the three parts of the bride price work to her advantage.


 


This made me smile:  ‘However, we were now betrothed, soon to be married. How could I possibly be expected to return to my bread dough after such a momentous occasion?’


 


Smart girl.


From Arndis:  ‘“Now he must celebrate with the men. That is our way."


"Then it is my way, as well," I agreed.’

Reviewer: artemisviolet Signed [Report This]
Date: 03 May 2020 8:44 PM Title: Chapter 23

I read the first 18(?) chapters of My Viking in my early teens on FFN. Recently, I had the urge to reread, even though I thought it had been abandoned. Imagine my surprise to find that not only was it not on FFN any more, but that it had been updated too! A very wonderful surprise.

I love this story, and it's been such a fun opportunity to learn about viking culture from Bella's point of view. Your Bella is such a wonderful character -- the way women flock to her loyalty is really such a strong symbol of her kindness and strength - something often lacking in fandom!Bellas.

I can't wait for your next update! I hope you're well, and happy!

Reviewer: artemisviolet Signed [Report This]
Date: 03 May 2020 8:43 PM Title: Chapter 23

I read the first 18(?) chapters of My Viking in my early teens on FFN. Recently, I had the urge to reread, even though I thought it had been abandoned. Imagine my surprise to find that not only was it not on FFN any more, but that it had been updated too! A very wonderful surprise.

I love this story, and it's been such a fun opportunity to learn about viking culture from Bella's point of view. Your Bella is such a wonderful character -- the way women flock to her loyalty is really such a strong symbol of her kindness and strength - something often lacking in fandom!Bellas.

I can't wait for your next update! I hope you're well, and happy!

Reviewer: artemisviolet Signed [Report This]
Date: 03 May 2020 8:43 PM Title: Chapter 23

I read the first 18(?) chapters of My Viking in my early teens on FFN. Recently, I had the urge to reread, even though I thought it had been abandoned. Imagine my surprise to find that not only was it not on FFN any more, but that it had been updated too! A very wonderful surprise.

I love this story, and it's been such a fun opportunity to learn about viking culture from Bella's point of view. Your Bella is such a wonderful character -- the way women flock to her loyalty is really such a strong symbol of her kindness and strength - something often lacking in fandom!Bellas.

I can't wait for your next update! I hope you're well, and happy!

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 03 May 2020 2:56 AM Title: Chapter 16

Yeah, he’s a guy all right:  "I will not deny how much I enjoy having you serve me and tend to all my needs. It makes me happy to know that it is enjoyable to you, as well.”


 


It’s nice that Edvard seems to understand that this could be hard for Bella:


"I have changed my mind," my Viking said, unexpectedly. "Jakob will come here to speak with you. I would not have you entering Jamarr's former house."


 


I like that Bella is smart enough to see it is in her own best interests to follow the customs that apply as a member of Beni’s household.  And that she decides to be discreet by not asking Jacob too openly about how/whether she could lie with Edvard again.


 


And yet:


"I will have you again before I leave," he said, eyes burning with unfulfilled lust.


"How?" I gasped.


"I am chief," he boasted with a grin. "I shall find my way between your thighs and none will be the wiser."


Promising!


 


Sweet:


‘"I believed my life to become a living hell upon my arrival. I never expected to find affection…or friendship."


Jakob returned my smile tenfold.’


 


Uh oh, Jakob re Jamarr’s household:   "There will be trouble if I am away for long."  He has already observed how everyone was treated like children.  I’m guessing there’s not a lot of maturity and hardly any selflessness.


 


Sigh, later in the day ‘I saw that Edvard had returned to the house and felt the greatest desire to rush to him, to embrace him, but I knew that I could not. Not anymore.’  Damn!  Also she realizes she should not interfere with this:  ‘I knew that he was now playing the part he had perfected so well over the years; the strong and unaffected chief.’


 


Interesting ceremony.  Especially when Bella realizes that the contents of the purse which will buy her freedom are ‘Plunderage! These were stolen!’


An uncomfortable reminder of who these people are, however civilized much of their society has proved to be.  It also reassures her that Edvard shares the bounty from his “expeditions” with the village.


 


Wow:  "It would please this thrall greatly if my master would sit in the seat of honor and have me serve him one last time."


True in Bella’s case, but how often might this be an outright lie?


 


Good lord, the goat slaughter takes place in the house??  Sounds messy.  And then holy crap, she has to actually chop off the head!  Bad ass indeed.  Of course in that time nobody had any illusions about meat coming from supermarkets.


 


This was unexpectedly funny, from Ro-se:  “You cannot attend your own feast looking as though you have been in battle."


 


Well described:  ‘Until this moment, I had not been regarded as a person in Viking society. I had been property of my master, plain and simple. Now that had changed. I was a free woman and I had rights.’


 


Empowering advice from Ro-se:  "Always hold your head high, Bella. You are a daughter of Vikings now and we do not cower."


 


Nice:  ‘Saying farewell to Isabella from Swan cottage had been a long and painful process but now it was done. I was her no longer. I was Bella Benadóttir, future wife of Edvard Karlsson, and I would one day help him lead our people.’


 


Amusing that once Bella is a free woman, the unattached men from the village are suddenly buzzing around.  ‘I did not care for their words, nor did I like the manner in which they looked upon me…’


 


And then Beni tells her that until Edvard declares his intentions to the whole village, “I am free to receive offers on your behalf. I suspect the first suitors will arrive in the morning seeing how you have enamored them so."


No wonder Edvard is scowling into his ale.


 


Interesting that Bella realizes a suitor ‘was not looking for affection in a wife. To him, as it was for most, marriage was a means of making alliances and now I belonged to a rich family.’  Not so different from her own first marriage, although at least she has something to say about the choice (thanks to Beni).


 


Smile:  ‘Edvard possessed no skills in this area and yet I treasured our stumbling dance even more, knowing that he did this to be close to me.’


And to keep others from getting too close!


 


Oh, and he has at least as much trouble as she does with sending her away from his bed!  That was a good scene, a drunken Edvard’s public behavior being restrained by Beni.


 


Quite a conundrum:  ‘Now my only worry regarding Edvard was to decide whether or not I should allow him access to my very willing body or if I should keep him at a distance as propriety dictated.’


I’m guessing she will surprise herself and Edvard by choosing propriety.  She has developed some pride in her own standing.


 


Quite a day for Bella!

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 26 Apr 2020 5:01 AM Title: Chapter 15

Bella’s fierce (if unspoken) objection to Einarr’s final suggestion that Edvard marry Kata, made me smile:  ‘No, shall be a good wife onto Edvard! I and none other!’ 


 


Aww:  "Do you not see, old friend? I have the best of everything already."


 


Interesting:  ‘In Edvard's absence I would diligently sacrifice to the goddesses who had already protected me from Jamarr for I remembered well how I had called upon them in my darkest hour…’


That’s true, she was calling on the goddesses when Ro-se turned up to rescue her from Jamarr.  Quite a change from her earlier days in the village, fighting to hold on to the religion of her birth.


 


I was a little surprised that Edvard asked Miki to speak to Kata for him.  But Miki is of that household and can assure her of Edvard’s intentions, with a little more detail than Einarr might provide.


 


I love that word, “youngling”.  That’s promising that Miki is already instructing Jutta to call him by his name rather than “master”.  


 


Grimace, your Bella has more sense than canon Bella about how her affection for Jacob might hurt or shame (or anger) Edvard.  


 


Jacob seems to really be earning his place in the village by managing Jamarr’s household.  A very grown-up responsibility for him.


 


Interesting discussion that a peaceful life in a secluded cottage is just not something Edvard can offer.  Of course Bella has just the right answer.


 


Oh yay, Ro-se is recovered enough to come out for dinner. 


 


Oh, so Bella was not the only one to be confused by Edvard’s intentions in freeing her.  Apparently he hasn’t clarified things with his family either.  Until tonight, anyway.


 


Sniffle:  ‘The look upon his face as he received well wishes from all was a thing of wonder; his eyes shone so brightly, and seeing his smile caused my heart to flutter.’


 


So when Edvard talks about the reward of a warrior’s death, it seems to be a total boys’ club, nothing about being reunited with his female loved ones.  


 


‘An unmarried daughter of Beni's house did not spend her nights with a man.’  Well, when you put it that way, I guess it makes sense.


 


Nice:  “Do you not see, my beauty?" he asked. "You are the one who have overpowered me. I am yours to do with what you will."


 


It really must be a struggle to not waste time and energy mourning their separation to come.  

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 17 Apr 2020 12:26 AM Title: Chapter 14

I smiled at Edward’s catalog of his shortcomings, even after Bella has stated so clearly “I am yours”.

 

Yikes:  “I will love you until the day my life is claimed by a warrior superior to me."

A little dose of reality among his romantic promises.

 

The thing most people don’t understand about dowries is that they can be called back by the wife if the marriage fails.  It’s kind of like her own escape fund.  At least this is true in many places.  Now on a practical level, whether that can be enforced might be a different matter.

 

Smile again:  ‘"When may we be wed?" I asked, failing in my effort not to seem overly eager.’  Too bad she is disappointed in the answer.  

 

Excellent conversation about why he did not free her immediately.  Good for him for being honest enough to admit the truth.  We also learn his intentions in that fateful conversation with Jamarr, and how her resulting fury affected him:

"I wished for your adoration and affection but saw only resentment and anger when you looked upon me that day," he said quietly. "I could not free you. You would no longer be mine. I could not keep you by my side if you were free. You would have chosen another man and I could not risk that.”

 

And while we ALL wish he had explained to her about the conversation with Jamarr, he is not perfect:  "I am a stubborn, proud fool at times. I did not want to show you how much power you wielded over me then.”

I bet Ester and Ro-se wanted to smack him.

 

That is a sad back-story with Jamarr.  It’s easy to see how he might have expected to become chief when Karl died.  Interesting that the “Ting” (all men, of course) had a say in whether Edvard or Jamarr became chief.  

 

And the story about Jamarr assaulting Lina when she was still so young:  “He has not touched any of our thralls since that night and I foolishly believed that would also apply to you."

 

Awesome:  "Not that I am opposed to debauchery," he clarified and claimed my lips in a heated kiss. "But not at the expense of our thriving and all of us surviving the winter."

 

‘For a brief moment I contemplated asking Edvard how many women he had claimed but decided that I had no desire to know.’

Good choice!  You really don’t want to know.

 

Interesting, and good news:  “Einarr will not risk Jamarr assaulting any of his people. He wishes to catch him almost as much as Emundi and I. Our alliance stands, despite my refusal to marry their sister."

 

Fun, Beni’s teasing:

‘"You are welcome in this house always. Even after your marriage, should you tire of this one."
He motioned to my Viking, who scowled fiercely upon hearing Beni's playful words.’

 

A nice domestic scene with Beni and Arndis and Bella beginning to learn about each other.  It does sound like a good home for Bella.

 

Aww:  ‘I took my place behind Edvard, as it was fitting for a thrall, but before we walked home he turned and smiled at me.

"Tomorrow you will walk by my side, beautiful one. As it was always meant to be."’

That could be a hard habit to break!

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 10 Apr 2020 2:59 AM Title: Chapter 13

My goodness, what a heap of miscommunication they have to work through!  I have total sympathy for the way Bella interpreted her “sale”, though.  Between her not understanding Viking customs, and him feeling guilty for having failed to protect her, yikes.


 


“I would never again subject you to the danger of being un-free.”


Ah, that makes sense.


 


Did not see this twist coming:  "To see you each day, to be in the presence of your sweetness and beauty knowing that I must think of you as a sister? It is not possible, Bella! I cannot do it."


 


Lovely:


‘"Tell me," he ordered softly and drew back to look upon my face. "Can you forgive me for putting you in harm's way? Can you trust me to touch you and know that I shall never harm you?"


I nodded and he drew a stuttering breath. For the first time I saw my Viking looking both anxious and hopeful at once.’


 


Also well said:  “I thought it an impossible dream; that you could ever care so deeply for the man who enslaved you. It seemed a fool's hope at best."


 


This is easy to forget:  ‘… we had had so few nights together…’  So much has happened, so fast.


 


Oh, it was good to hear Ro-se’s story of how she came to be at Jamarr’s house.  Interesting:  “You belong to my house, Bella, and so you are also my thrall. I thought that I could perhaps forbid Jamarr to use you…”


Bella has been treated so much like family that it’s jarring to think of Emundi and Ro-se and Ester owning her.


 


Also I was surprised that Ro-se had been captured from another Viking village!  Although I should have noticed that she didn’t speak English and couldn’t have been from Bella’s homeland.  Ro-se was lucky too to have a father who gave a damn whether the proposed marriage was “to her liking”.


 


Smile:  "Well, perhaps not wholly untouched, but a maiden nonetheless."


Seems to me we heard earlier that Ro-se was quite the spitfire early on, so I assume any touching would have been consensual.


 


Poor Bella, confused not only about local customs and Edvard’s intentions, but also feeling like there’s no one she can ask.


 


Aww:  "How can I sleep when my Viking does not?"


And this:  "You have returned to me, safe, and that is most important."


 


She sure has figured out how to soothe the savage beast.  And surprise him!  


 


Nice, considering how agitated he was when he got home:


‘He gave me a boyish grin, and his face now appeared so young and without care that I could not stop my lips from curving up upon witnessing his unusual playfulness.’


 


Charming:  "And when you smile you become as radiant as the sun."


 


Yay:  ‘My lustful body took over…’  Yumm:  ‘Our joining on the chair had been for my pleasure alone.’  No wonder her body is lustful!


 


Big progress:  ‘With Edvard there was no shame in giving into my desires and now I wished for him to quell the ache I felt.’


 


Now that’s a cliffhanger!  I hope he’s going to say their future is up to her, but somehow I doubt that.


 

Reviewer: Dogrosie Signed [Report This]
Date: 04 Apr 2020 7:30 PM Title: Chapter 10

I like this because it's not just about sex but a love story with some humour but I like some lemons haha;

 

 

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 04 Apr 2020 5:12 AM Title: Chapter 12

Oh my gosh, starting the chapter with Bella’s nightmare scared me!  I thought maybe we missed something that Jamarr did.


 


That was a touching detail, that the whole household was still up, but silent, upset over what had happened to Ro-se and Bella.


 


As much as I hate to think of women being cooped up in their houses in order to be safe, Bella may at least need to be more cautious:  ‘Had I not acted foolishly and left the safety of Edvard's house none of this would have come to pass. … I had always thought myself a clever girl but clearly that was not the case, after all.’


When I think about it, she’s only been out of the house with Edvard or Jacob, and who’s going to cross either of them?


 


This was affecting too:  "She is in pain," Ester said to Edvard. "Sit her down gently and have Lina fetch a remedy for your Bella."


Your Bella, indeed.


 


Oh, good for Ester:  "Bella," Ester said, following my gaze. "I do not deny that my son has a strong need for female company, but you are his chosen woman. Behave as such."


Oh dear, Ester’s story:  "I was not a maiden, and for a free woman that is of the utmost importance when entering a marriage," Ester explained. "It was not my choice to lie with the man who took me first, and while all were sympathetic it did not change the fact that my options were limited.”


So fracking unfair, then and not so long ago here!


 


Ah, that explains the house rules that we heard earlier:  “Still, I do not tolerate such actions in this house and I make sure the thralls and my sons know this."


 


Sigh, wonderful description of Edvard’s personal care, helping her clean up after the assault.  


Her reactions are not going to be rational for a while:


‘"You…you must not fear me, Bella. I could never…"


"I know," I nodded and blinked back the tears in my eyes.’


Aww:  ‘I slipped off the dresses myself, desperate for Edvard to leave and equally desperate for him to stay.’


 


What suspense when he asks whether Jamarr actually managed to rape her.  Very well written.


 


Sniffle:  "My brave woman," Edvard whispered. "You possess such strength in both mind and body."


 


OMG, and then he gets in the bath with her!  He’s such a stunning blend of tough guy and sweetness.


 


Can’t even think of the right word – sad? Terrifying?  Hopeless? when she realizes ‘I was property, through and through; a favored pet.’    And ‘Even if I birthed Edvard’s children I would still only be a glorified whore in the eyes of Viking society.’


Edvard wants her not to say these things, but it’s true!


 


Uh oh, so what does Edvard blame himself for?   


“Gods, what have I done?” I heard him whisper. “Forgive me, my Bella. Forgive me.”


 


Shudder:  ‘Any free man could force himself upon me and would suffer no consequences so long as he had silver to pay my master for lending me a short while.’


 


Interesting, when Lina brings her breakfast in the morning:  ‘…I immediately felt guilty for having felt jealous that she had smiled when Edvard spoke to her the night before. She lived for pleasing her master, same as me…’


 


A wonderful portrayal of Emundi’s devotion to Ro-se.  And his continued kindness to Bella.


 


Ester hits the nail on the head:  "There is nothing to forgive," Ester said. "Ro-se made the decision to rescue you and while it has cost her dearly I very much doubt she regrets it."


 


Interesting that the herbal remedies are the province of women.  It gives them some power, anyway.


 


Ominous when Edvard returns home and is obviously tense about talking to Bella.  ‘All I wanted was to run to him, to embrace him now that we were alone, but his stance told me that I should not.’ 


 


What a twist, Bella’s change of home and of status!  Not at all surprising that she’s confused about Edvard’s intent.  So because she will now be free, the consequences if Jamarr or anyone else should come after her are drastically different.  I’m not clear why she had to leave Edvard’s house, though.  She couldn’t live in his house as a free woman because … she’s not a relative?  He thinks she’d be safer while he’s gone?  And no longer being his bed thrall – what an exchange.  


 


And as with Jutta, no one asked her, or even explained it to her till after it was done!  Good intentions, I’m sure, but arrrgghh!   

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 Mar 2020 4:51 AM Title: Chapter 11

Oh yes, I remember this chart from the first time I read this story, long ago.  It’s still just as hard to read.


 


What a nice, and unexpected, apology from Emundi to Bella.  The recognition from him and from Ro-se lends a different kind of solidity to E&B’s relationship.


 


I laughed out loud at Emundi’s fear that Ro-se might hex him.  


 


Unexpected parallel with Bella’s homeland:  ‘I shivered lightly at the thought of the kinds of dark magic that might dwell in this land for I did believe in it.’


 


What a relief that Bella is finally confident of the difference between the behavior between them in public and in private.  I actually liked that she said “As you wish”, to acknowledge Edvard’s public status.  It sure didn’t fool Emundi, though!


 


Smile:  ‘… my new favorite task of warming our bed and pleasing my Viking.’  She even begins to take pride in her place in Edvard's house.


 


I like too that she is deferential with Ester, asking for permission to go talk to Jakob.  


 


Whoa, I guess Edvard has been very successful at maintaining his fearsome public image, if the other thrall (who turns out to be Jamarr’s) is grateful she’s not in Bella’s position.  She thinks of Edvard as ‘a terrible beast with his large muscles and cold eyes’.  I wonder if her shock at Bella being on her own out of the house, is partly due to Bella using Edvard’s given name.


 


Ah, yes:  "Do not speak his name!" she hissed. "He does not allow it!"


 


What an evil dude, implying a threat toward Ester or Ro-se to distract Emundi, while Edvard is travelling.  Bella surprises even herself:  ‘Never before had I encountered such a craving for violence, and though it startled me greatly, I did not regret my harsh words.’


 


I imagine this is sadly true of a slave:  “I could kill you this instant and all your master could do was demand payment."


 


This could have been over very quickly if Bella hadn’t fought so hard.  Sad but useful that ‘I had grown accustomed to pain from the hands of my cruel husband’.  Ugh:  ‘My husband always spared my face during his abuse but Jamarr had no such reservations.’


 


I liked that when Ro-se jumped on Jamarr, Bella wondered if she might be Freja.  But after he injures Ro-se he knows he has made a fatal error.  I loved that in Ro-se’s reply to him, she doesn’t back down one bit.  


 


Do not mess with Ester!  "No!" Ester said with authority. "You will find the one who did this to my daughters and you will bring him back here, preferably alive that I might witness as you claim his worthless life."


Of course it’s great that she says “daughters”.


 


Amazing scenes between Edvard and Bella after the brothers rescue the women from Jamarr’s house.  

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 16 Mar 2020 5:11 AM Title: Chapter 10

Yummy description of their middle-of-the-night coupling.


 


Smart girl:  ‘I was also of the impression that he loved me but I was not so foolish to think that my future was set. To the best of my knowledge many men were fickle creatures and as long as Edvard had not asked me to marry him I could not rest easy.’


 


She fully appreciates that life with Edvard ‘was beyond anything I had dared to dream for myself. Safety from harm was all I had hoped for …’


 


‘I gazed lovingly at the man beside me who was resting peacefully, naked and beautiful, and the sight made me smile.’


Me, too!


 


A lovely moment in the morning:  


‘"You are here," he simply uttered before tightening his arms around me and burying his face in my hair. "My beauty."


"I am," I whispered and rubbed my cheek against his chest.’ 


 


Wonderful, when Ester and Ro-se bring her new clothing:


‘"If he was not completely inept with a needle and thread I would ask Edvard to mend this himself for this looks to be the handiwork of my impatient son," she said.’


 


Uh-oh, Bella takes this to mean this is something he has done regularly, with many other women.  She could be right.


 


But this is sweet, from Ester:  "I shall happily mend any dresses that require[s] it to see my son smiling as he did just now."


 


Bella is understandably rattled when Edvard gives Jutta as a gift to Miki.  ‘Jutta would now be taken away from all she knew here simply because she had caught the eye of a visiting Viking.’  


I was impressed by Edvard’s insistence on how Jutta was to be treated.  I suppose it would have been unthinkable to ask Jutta what she wanted. 


A jolting reality check:  ‘I suppose I had somehow deluded myself into believing that we were like a large family when in reality we were slaves whose fate was controlled entirely by one man…’


 


I remain amazed at the things Bella has the nerve to ask directly, including why he never considered Jutta as a permanent bed thrall.  Interesting that his answer boiled down to “The gods wanted it that way, I suppose.”


 


True!  ‘After all, if Edvard had not taken a special liking to me I might have been the one who was being given away as a gift.’


 


She’s smart, too, that as delighted as she was to be called “my sister” by Ro-se, 


‘I did not want to tell him of Ro-se's assumption if it was not accurate. I did not want to seem presumptuous and I knew that simply being Edvard's woman was a great privilege…’


 


Good girl!


‘"I shall enjoy coaxing [your secrets] out of you, sweet Bella," he murmured. "I have many ways to persuade you." …


"I…I look forward to it," I whispered boldly, feeling my cheeks flame.’


 


But she could not possibly have expected him to start at the table in public!  


There’s that “heathen magic” again!


‘I found that my absolute mortification and dread that Edvard's ministrations might be discovered was mixing with desire and my mind clouded.’


 


When she admits that part of the reason she would not deny him is that she cares for him,


‘Where his eyes before held mirth and lust, they were now filled with warmth and tenderness. He smiled at me.


"My beauty," he said softly. "You may keep the rest of your secrets. That was all I truly desired to know."’


Wow!


 


Geez, then Edvard all but pisses on her leg over Jacob.  He even wants to know what she’d do if he denied her Jacob’s friendship.  Not his best moment.


 


Hmm, Edvard’s icy calm manner in denying Tonna and Einarr’s wish that he marry their sister is very effective.  Tonna sure does not like being told no!  And yikes, Edvard’s response is entirely misogynistic toward Tonna. 


 


It really is shocking how calmly they discuss the practicality of marrying Kata for the alliance and keeping Bella on the side.  And then how young Kata is - even Bella is shocked at that.


 


What a clash this turns into, neither side giving in.  When they’re alone and Edvard still does not calm down, this is a huge peacemaking concession from Bella:  


"I will still be yours," I whispered. "Even if you marry her."


 


But he doesn’t want to hear it.  “You are mine and I am yours. Is that clear?"


Those have got to be incredibly welcome words to Bella.


 


That was not even “makeup sex”, it seemed like pure “mine” sex.  ‘For the first time he seemed to focus solely on himself.’  At least she managed not to be frightened, and not to resist him.


 


She’s learning a lot about Edvard, or maybe about men:  ‘I understood that this was not the time for affection. His immediate need seemed too strong for something like that. …Surprisingly, I found that I did not mind being taken like this; so roughly and wildly and solely for his pleasure. I was his and he needed me.’


 


Nice:  ‘"I promised you joy each time we lay together and I shall honor it."


I remembered the vow of which he spoke and it made me smile that he did too.’


 


Yeah, he ‘honors it’ all right!  Whew!


 


An interesting situation:   "Einarr has a family of his own and desires peace. It is easy for Tonna to speak of war since she has no children.”


 


A good echo of canon:  "I have waited so long for you and I will not let you go now that I have you."


 


A scary moment at the pond when she thinks someone is watching her from the tree line.  ‘…they would know that I was alone here. Unprotected.


As I will be when Edvard leaves for his journey.’


When Edvard returns, she sees that despite his reassuring words, he too believes someone was there.  


 


A lovely concluding paragraph, showing Bella’s confidence in their growing relationship.

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 08 Mar 2020 3:22 AM Title: Chapter 9

‘I had known for some time that I harbored affection for Edvard and wanted to serve his every need. I wanted to ease his troubled mind, be his friendly harbor and make him smile.'

Aww, if that's not love, it's awfully close.  It's sobering to remember how true this is:

‘The sensation was unfamiliar to me and the notion even more so.' 

 

Nasty memories:  ‘I went into my marriage thinking that if I performed my duties perfectly, my new husband would treat me kindly and feelings might emerge.'  

Ugh, "performed my duties perfectly".  A standard that women of my mother's generation still believed in.  It probably haunts more of us today than we even know.  And it doesn't work now any better than it did in Bella's day.  The person hoping that being "perfect" will draw affection from the person with all the power, has no power.

 

Another layer:  ‘I did not even know the Viking word for love.

Does it exist at all?'

It's probably smart of her not to assume the concept is part of Viking culture.

 

Sigh, she's still ultimately powerless:  ‘Now I could only do my best to please Edvard so that he would follow his brother's example and make me his wife.'

But at least she has reason to be confident in his good character.  Not to mention the stellar sex!

 

Also, of course, she has to convince him that any children she might bear will be his.  How convenient that he had his spy.  And even though my feminist heart squeals in protest, this is sweet:

"Though you please me greatly by telling me this. I know that you are a good and honest woman and I am happy that you want to put my mind at ease now that you are in my bed once more."

 

OK, so she does have some leverage - even while she was not his bed thrall, he couldn't tolerate "the mere thought of another man touching you".   

 

This was chilling, the reason he completely trusted Jakob:

"I know of his wishes for the future and I control them."

 

Well-imagined scene in the main room, when E&B head to the bathroom.  I smiled when Bella saw Miki and Jutta:  ‘I found myself wondering if Edvard and I looked the same when we were together...' 

 

This is so much of what draws Bella to him:

‘I took all of him in with my eyes as I reached him and not too long ago I would have been terrified of the sight in front of me: A strong and powerful naked man with lust burning in his eyes was reaching for me. He could so easily hold me down and violate me should he want to do so, and no one would come to my rescue if he did. I knew this and yet I felt no fear.'

 

Good girl, getting inspired to bring her skills up to Jutta's.  The jealousy doesn't run only in one direction:  ‘I alone would be in Edvard's bed from this day forth. I alone would bring him joy.'

 

Interesting, although she has worked very hard, she has also eaten better than she did in her homeland, and her body has filled out.  ‘Not once had I gone to bed with an empty stomach...'  It makes me wonder how often that happened before.

 

Wonderful, when she asks if she can touch him:  ‘Edvard broke into a grin, lay back on the bed and raised his arms above his head thus giving me complete access to his naked form.  ..."Do with me what you will."'

Such a tempting invitation, and one suited to calm a novice.

 

Very good:  ‘I realized just how passive I had been during our previous encounters. That would change after tonight. He would never be in doubt of my desire for him again.'

 

Oh, poor baby, so frightened of fellatio.  He handles it just right, of course, including staying still.  This was particularly encouraging:  

‘"Do you recall how it felt when I did it to you?"
My eyes snapped up to his and my face flushed.

"Yes, you remember," he chuckled at my reaction.'

 

Re her husband's treatment of her:  ‘"I wish he were still alive that I might have the pleasure of killing him," Edvard said in a low and frightening voice.'

Go, Edvard.  Interesting too that he doesn't understand why she didn't / couldn't leave him.

 

Oh my, and when he talks about being sad about her weeping at night in the communal beds:

"I do miss my family," I admitted. "But mostly I...I longed for you."

Quite an admission.

 

She is so on the right track!

‘I surprised both him and myself when I grasped his wrists, pushed him back on the bed and raised his arms above his head. He surrendered easily and closed his eyes which prompted me to take a moment to admire him.'

 

It's chilling, though, how she keeps looking up to check that his hands are nowhere near her.

 

Ha ha:  ‘His lips sought mine immediately and it did not seem to bother him that I had just had his manhood in my mouth.'

A benefit of being clean!

 

Delightfully playful:

"All night?" I questioned. "Is such a thing possible?"

"Let us find out..."

 

Nicely said:  ‘I felt lost in his mossy gaze; so warm, so tender, and I never wished to be found again.'

 

I enjoy that your Bella can be so literal-minded.  When he asked if she enjoyed her orgasm,

‘I did not know why he asked for I thought it was evident that I did enjoy it very much.'

 

This is an interesting statement of why she feels safe with him:  ‘Edvard would not be careless with me and he would not harm me.'

That conscious carefulness is even more to be valued than lack of intent to harm.

 

Sniffle:  ""Bless her, Freja..."

Reviewer: charlieromeo Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 28 Feb 2020 9:48 PM Title: Chapter 22

i love this story 

Reviewer: charlieromeo Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Feb 2020 9:48 PM Title: Chapter 22

i love this story 

Reviewer: charlieromeo Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Feb 2020 9:47 PM Title: Chapter 22

i love this story 

Reviewer: charlieromeo Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 Feb 2020 9:42 PM Title: Chapter 23

I love this story so much 

Reviewer: fabiolagmtz Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 Feb 2020 8:08 PM Title: Chapter 23

I feel like I've been following you and this story forever... Thank you for not giving up on it in spite of your very hectic life. I proclaim myself as your #1 mexican fan. Lots of love from a thousand miles away!!

Reviewer: charlieromeo Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 Feb 2020 6:06 PM Title: Chapter 23

I love this story so much 

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 26 Feb 2020 5:53 AM Title: Chapter 8

Hmm, I wonder if Edvard was showing off a little, or at least taking some pride, by speaking to Bella in his language in front of his guests.  This is reassuring too:  He spoke to her slowly because ‘He did not want me to appear incompetent in front of his guests…’


Wow that would be a shock that one of the presumed warriors turns out to be female!  I hope you will comment in your notes on whether this really happened.


I guess she has to get used to this:  ‘He began stroking my side again and I stood awkwardly by as they continued to speak of me, almost as though I was not there.’  At least he doesn’t repeat the sort of crude comments he exchanged with Jamarr.


Interesting, her observation of the sense of community among the visiting thralls and Edvard’s.  Yes, who would your friends be except people who shared a life similar to yours.


Aww, so sweet:  ‘He looked so handsome in his new tunic which matched the exact color of his eyes. I was the one who had made it for him and this was the first night he had ever worn it.’


 


Wow, she’s solving some of the mystery:  


‘I had spent enough nights around the fire watching Edvard interact with both his family and the other thralls to know that he was at heart a good and kind man. The powerful chief in front of me was not the genuine Edvard but rather one he had to portray in front of his guests and I would help him keep up his deception this night because it mattered to him.’


Wise choice, for a wise reason.


 


An interesting puzzle:  ‘Each time he would stroke my hair or touch my hand affectionately I wondered if he did it because he enjoyed it or because he knew that we were under observation [from his guests].’


Lovely that he chooses to comfort her about her sadness from missing her sisters, rather than lecturing her about her life being here now.


 


This was a fun exchange with Emundi:


“Will you bring my brother enjoyment this night?"


…I blushed furiously at the implication but nodded just the same since Emundi was my master as well and I would not offend him by not answering his query.


"Freja be praised!" he grinned. "Then you make me happy as well."


Also just a bit startling, as it’s easy to forget Emundi is also Bella’s master.


 


OK, so what the heck was that conversation with Tonna and her companion?  “I trust that you will value our friendship higher.”  Higher than what, exactly??


This might be dangerously willful for Bella:  ‘I knew that something was the matter which he was not sharing with me. I vowed to make him talk to me once we were alone…’  Make him talk?


Yes, thank goodness for this, as the evening’s carousing ratchets up:  ‘I was happy to see that none of my fellow thralls seemed distressed…’


The strictures from Bella’s homeland seem to be loosening:  ‘I knew that the way into his heart went through his bed…’  This makes sense too:  ‘Perhaps not being surrounded by people who were constantly telling me that my body was sinful had also changed my outlook on the matter.’


She seems to be reconciled to keeping her true religious convictions and practices to herself, as well.


Definitely not good:  ‘Edvard simply took off his tunic and slumped down in his chair in front of the fire, looking as though all the burdens of the world were on his shoulders.’  It’s delightful that Bella takes the initiative to do what she can to soothe him.


Oh!  Edvard’s wife had been the sister of Tonna and Einarr.  That explains some of their familiarity with him.  So he’s being pressured to marry again to strengthen their alliance.  Makes sense, a single man of his rank would be quite a prize.


 


This would have been such good news before tonight:  


"Why will you not leave me be? Why do you visit my dreams at night? Why are you in my thoughts before I sleep?"


But now:  "Will you continue to vex me when I am married?”  Yikes!


 


Well finally, Bella gets to say exactly what she’s been feeling.  That’s a relief.  Some excellent dialog:


“Can you not see how you wounded me that day? I have only rejected you because I fear that you will hurt me again if I confess that I want you still and that you are in my thoughts and dreams as well! I desire you and it terrifies me!"


 


Wow she gets straight to the point:


‘There was but one thing I needed to know before surrendering myself to our mutual desire.


"You will not marry another?"’


 


This made me chuckle, her use of such a formal word:  ‘I had never done this standing up and gasped in surprise that it was even possible to fornicate in this manner.’


Perfect make-up sex!


 


Uh, Bella, you might be getting ahead of yourself just a bit:  ‘This is why the good Lord brought me here. To be with Edvard, for both of us to have a happy second marriage and have children with one another.’  


He only said he wouldn’t marry someone else, not that he would marry Bella.

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 18 Feb 2020 6:30 AM Title: Chapter 7

It’s a pleasure to watch Bella’s knowledge of the world expand.  Specifically she talks about the Vikings’ industriousness and their personal cleanliness.  (That certainly fits with my Norwegian mother – she wore us out with cleaning and chores!)  And later she learns about their “strange heathen religion”, an oral rather than written tradition.


She also finds that Edvard has many virtues besides being handsome and wielding heathen magic.  I like these specifics:  ‘We ate as well as the family, the children were allowed to play and did not have many chores and never once did I witness violence.’  How many enslaved people throughout history had that much?


What a great moment:  ‘I was sitting on the edge of the bed, combing out my hair while lost in my own thoughts when I had the distinct feeling of being watched. I looked up and nearly dropped my comb when my sleepy eyes met the burning dark gaze which was Edvard's. On some level I knew that he had still wanted me even after I rejected him, but up until that moment I had felt assured that he had moved on, since he still took Jutta to his bed every once in a while.’  


And ‘even though it was no concern of mine, it still pleased me to know that they did not share affection.’  


Smile, after her erotic dreams ‘I always found it extremely difficult to take my eyes off him the following day and if he caught me looking at him I could not hide the blush on my cheeks.’


I’m sure he noticed!


Aww:  ‘But I did miss him, my Viking, and there were some nights when I was so lonesome that I considered running to his bed chamber to beg him to take me back…’


Jacob was kind to think of warning Bella what to expect with the visitors and the feast.  


Once again we run into a limit to Edvard’s power:  "It would be considered an insult if Edvard forbade them to touch his thralls during and after a feast. Not many Vikings treat their serfs as well as Edvard does, and they certainly do not care about consent from female slaves."


Oh geez:  "If you do not struggle they will not harm you," [Jacob] said... "And if you drink plenty of mead it will make you drowsy and not care so much."


Interesting that she thinks about “submitting” to her husband in much the same way.


Surprising – the Vikings treated one another the same as their offshore targets:  ‘Without the alliances we would every day face the risk of being attacked by other Vikings, and if they were victorious we thralls would be snatched up and brought back with the victors…’  I can imagine the “alliances” being carefully maintained from one generation to the next.


Her bafflement made me smile:  ‘I gaped at him. Was Edvard giving me a bath? What would ever possess him to do such a thing?’


Funny that he’s inept at washing her hair.  I suppose his wife always had servants to do it.  He certainly has figured out the pleasure of the bathing part!


Such a vivid image:  ‘The only sounds in the room were the crackling of the fire and our breathing. Mine; shallow and fast with nerves and Edvard's; deep and slightly ragged.’


A particularly well-done exchange, as he instructs her on what he expects at and after the feast:


‘"You will spend the whole night with me!" he growled.


My eyes snapped open in shock and I sat up straight. I was saved! I would not be violated by the strangers!


"Do not fight me on this, woman," Edvard warned, as he mistook my reaction to the news.’


And when he abruptly walks away, ‘I sat in the cooling water with the very distinct feeling that I had somehow displeased Edvard, but I could not for the life of me figure out how.’


I agree – he confuses me too!


The plot thickens:


‘I had thought it enough to merely dwell in Edvard's house to remain unharmed... I needed to be Edvard's woman to feel completely safe and this was what he wanted.


I want it too.’


Considering that she walked away from him mere days after arriving, this must certainly be true:  ‘I now had a slightly better understanding of the ways of this world and I confess that the more I learned, the more I realized how good and noble Edvard was.’


A sweet and hopeful moment, while he’s at the table drinking with his guests:


‘He must have sensed my eyes on him because he suddenly looked straight at me and I found myself lost in his mossy green gaze for a moment or two. Heat rose to my cheeks and my lips curved up in a smile. He regarded me with what seemed like caution at first but then his eyes warmed and he returned the smile that I had given him.’


Great wording:  ‘He was still in there, my Viking.’


I like her resolve:  ‘It would not be an easy feat to let go of my apprehension and fear of being hurt once more, but for my Viking I would try.’


Good for her:  ‘If I was to have even the slightest chance of becoming his wife I needed behave like a grown woman he would want by his side all the time and not merely use for pleasure.’


I wish she could say this to him out loud, although at the moment it’s progress that she even admits it to herself:


Be my Viking once more, Edvard, and I will gladly be your woman. Show me kindness, open your heart to me. Share your thoughts, please, and I will tie myself to you and never leave your side again.


I laughed at your author’s note that ‘We might just get a lemon if these two don't screw things up again.’  So it’s up to them rather than you, is it?  I believe you!

Reviewer: RHEE Signed [Report This]
Date: 16 Feb 2020 10:54 PM Title: Chapter 23

Love this story can't wait for the next chapter!!!! 

Reviewer: Celebrityhound Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 13 Feb 2020 12:36 AM Title: Chapter 23

i read this years ago and when the updates stopped I gave up. However I started watching The Vikings and thought of this I was so pleased that you had started to write again. I hope you finish it. Great Story

Reviewer: Celebrityhound Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 12 Feb 2020 11:29 PM Title: Chapter 22

i read this years ago and when the updates stopped I gave up. However I started watching The Vikings and thought of this I was so pleased that you had started to write again. I hope you finish it. Great Story

Reviewer: Celebrityhound Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 10 Feb 2020 4:53 PM Title: Chapter 3

I read this years ago but gave up waiting for updates but recently started watching The Vikings and remembered this. I was very pleased you were working on it again and hope to see it completed. I am re-reading and loving it.

Reviewer: Celebrityhound Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 10 Feb 2020 1:49 PM Title: Chapter 1

I read this many years ago but you stopped updating. It was a favorite. Recently I started watching The Voking and it made me remember this. When I went searching I was pleased to see you started updating again so have started to reread, I still love it looking forward to you finishing it.

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 09 Feb 2020 5:29 AM Title: Chapter 6

We’re on tenterhooks now, wondering what Bella’s post-bed-thrall life will be like.


 


Worrisome:  Ester ‘greeted me with a warm smile which made my insides ache, for I knew that it would most likely be the last one I was ever to receive once she learned that I had rejected her son.’


That’s a good distinction, that it was Bella who rejected him, not the other way around which must have happened before.  I wonder how Edvard will “spin” this with others in the household and town.  But Bella does believe that others in the household know what happened, at least the outcome.


 


I was a little surprised that she was still expected to serve him meals.  Maybe any thrall might be assigned to do that?  


 


I love the way she says this:  "Edvard, I…I am sorry," I whispered and shifted my weight. "That I could not be what you wanted."


 


Interesting way to look at it:  ‘I almost envied these heathens their ignorance that they may fornicate without a care in the world and simply enjoy the pleasure they felt.’  But she would be convinced the “heathens” were destined for hell, so it’s not a simple trade!


 


I liked your making Jacob a countryman of Bella’s, a great reason for a warm friendship.  Good story about his mother refusing to let go of him when she was captured.  


 


Ooh, fun to get a glimpse of Edvard and Emundi’s father!  Nice, Edvard and Jacob "grew up together and were as close to friends as two children of different stations in life can be.”


 


Jacob certainly encapsulates Bella’s dilemma re being Edvard’s woman, and suggests she has misjudged him.  Ah, she is surprised that Jacob describes Edvard as being “lonesome” after his wife’s death.  


 


She really has a puzzle to mull over now, with the paradox of Jacob’s view of how Edvard views his woman – plus her own sweet experience – versus the way he had spoken of her to Jamarr.  ‘But what would be the purpose of Edvard's slander if he did not care about Jamarr's opinion? Why had he felt the need to demean me in such a humiliating way, tainting everything we had done together?’


I’m confused too!  But I bet he has no idea how strongly she reacted to that encounter.


 


She tells Jacob ‘”I wish to remain in Edvard's house."


It was the only steady point in my life, and the mere thought of being married off to a stranger made me quiver with fear. At least here I knew what to expect... And I would still be able to see Edvard every day.’  


Aha!


 


Smile:  ‘…a handsome man who knew the wickedness of my flesh before even I did.’


That’s the best kind!


 


Hmm, interesting opportunity for a private conversation after she “swoons” out of exhaustion while cooking and burns her hand.  This was a great line:  ‘"What happened?" I whispered and closed my eyes, not wanting to see the cold amidst all the beautiful mossy green.’


 


I have to hand it to Bella, she takes advantage of every chance to tell Edward what’s on her mind.  What a relief, being reassured that he has reconsidered his initial words:  "I spoke too soon when I said that you did not have a place here in my house.”


 


On the other hand, she learns ‘I must not touch Edvard again.


I felt a pang of sadness at the thought of never feeling his arms around me but it could be no other way with us.’


 


A nice moment:  ‘…the women began to sew and make wool into yarn. I could not help but smile a little when I settled among them with a needle and thread of my own. This was familiar to me. This I could do without worry or fear.’


 


Oh, he has heard from someone about Jamarr’s approach to Bella during the feast.


‘I raised my face carefully and fought the urge to wince for I felt certain that I would be struck.


Edvard had a most foul temper and no matter what I did, I ended up displeasing and disobeying him.’


Hard to argue about that.


 


Oh my, when she questions his intentions with Jutta, 


‘He was out of his chair immediately and pinned me against the door with his large firm body.


"What I do with her or any other woman is no concern of yours!" he hissed angrily. "You are but a serf! You…you do not mean anything to me!"’


Huh, just a moment before I would have sworn something different…  And then I laughed out loud when the door closed behind Bella and he ‘let out an angry roar which caused me to flinch followed by the sound of furniture breaking’.  


 


Ugh, so much more consequential than all the boys swarming around at Forks High:


‘…when I saw a few of the other male thralls give me hopeful looks and make room next to them, I found myself moving towards Jacob with a thundering heart.’


 


Good to know:  "Edvard only allows fornication among the thralls so long as both are willing."


 


Sigh:  ‘I could certainly not obtain rest with such impropriety going on all around me and attempted to think of something else.’  


 


Aggravating to think about:  Jutta ‘would never think to reject [Edvard] and would gladly lie with him without feeling so much as a shred of guilt.’


But it’s not as bad as it could have been, when Jutta returns to the common room to sleep:  ‘Edvard slept alone tonight and I could not stop myself from foolishly hoping that perhaps he would think of me a little while before falling asleep.’


 


Oh my gosh what a lovely moment when Edvard comes by her bed:  ‘I felt his eyes on me and next my cover being pulled up around my shoulder to better keep me warm. His hand stroked my hair gently for a moment before I heard him stand up and walk away.’


 

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 01 Feb 2020 6:19 AM Title: Chapter 5

I’m enjoying her regard for Emundi:  ‘I found it beyond difficult to think anything negative about him even though he was the one who had brought me here.’  It no doubt makes it easier for her to be among these strange people, when she likes one of the key men.


 


So let me get this straight, Bella has to sit attendance on Edvard while he’s eating, just in case he wants something, and doesn’t get to eat until he’s finished?  Grrr.  But not that different from my parents’ household, where mom never really settled into her dinner until dad left the table.


(Actually, we ALL enjoyed ourselves more after dad left the table.)


 


When she doesn’t take a big portion for herself, and he asks if she’s OK.  ‘It was not my body that was weary but rather my soul. I wished that I could be perfectly truthful with him and tell him exactly how I felt, but I did not want him to know how badly he had wounded me and how much power he wielded over me.’


Not only that, he’s made it pretty clear he doesn’t want to hear about her weary soul.  


 


No doubt!  ‘… it was also my impression of most men that they were not prone to dwell on emotions, and perhaps he thought that I would forget our altercation.’  


More like, felt entitled to demand that she forget it!


 


Ooh, creepy:  ‘…I made the mistake of raising my eyes to the room. I startled when I realized that almost every man in the room had his eyes fixed on me.’  That would not make her feel safe at all.


 


This seems to be a cultural difference, too:  


"Everyone is looking at me," I said quietly.


"Naturally, my beauty," he said with a smile. "You are a joy to gaze upon and I cannot take my eyes off you myself."


In much Twific we get a ridiculously possessive Edward.  Not that this Edvard would tolerate anyone touching the goods, but he practically enjoys their looking and their envy.


 


That was a nice moment when he feeds her the pear cooked in honey.  ‘I had never enjoyed a meal so much in my life.’  I suspect if he had just given her the bowl and sent her off to eat it in a corner, it would not have tasted nearly as yummy.


 


This would have unnerved any woman, but with Bella’s experience…


‘I looked up into icy blue eyes and immediately I felt an all too familiar sense of dread. It was the same feeling I got every time my late husband returned home and I smelled the drink on him. I was in peril.’


What a time for her to find out that sometimes Edvard will be travelling for a while, leaving her to cope with others who might want her.  


And what a nasty prospect:


“Perhaps he will return from his journey with a new bed thrall for himself and you will be passed on."


 


Sad but true, they’re so new to each other:  ‘I did not know anything about Edvard's character or how loyal he was towards his woman.’


 


A fun light moment when Emundi drags Bella onto the dance floor.  And an abrupt (and potentially hot) end to the dance:


Emundi ‘swung me around one last time when the music came to an end but before he could put my feet on the ground, Edvard appeared out of nowhere and threw me over his shoulder. He walked hastily towards his bedchamber and behind us I heard laughing and cheering as he carried me off.’


 


Aww…  ‘…thankfully he still handled me with care and there was no pain to be found. But there was not much in the way of pleasure either. My mind was too occupied with dismal thoughts and my heart to[o] heavy with hurt to enjoy what he did to me.’


 


Oh, sad:  ‘He genuinely seemed to care and it broke me because I realized that I truly did want him to. .... I wanted to be his adored and cherished woman, but I knew that I was no such thing to him.’


 


Well, at least he stayed in the room with her while she sobbed her heart out.  He could so easily have run off.  But then, though he doesn’t display a temper tantrum, he is quite cold to her.


Uh oh:  "You have said quite enough, Bella.”


 


I was a little surprised that she begged him to let her stay in the household, but what other alternative did she have?  


 


This could have gone worse too:  "Go to bed, Bella," he said. "It is not your place any longer but I will not have you humiliate me in front of my men by going out there to sleep tonight.”  His fear of his own humiliation spares her a worse fate, but he doesn’t even seem to think of that.


 


Quite a moment when she wants to say “one more thing” and he shuts her up.  At least he took out his temper by throwing some innocent object against the wall rather than Bella.


 


‘All I knew was that I was no longer Edvard's bed thrall and my life was only going to get harder now that I was not in his favor.’  Certainly true.  And she doesn’t seem to have realized yet how painful it will be to see him with a new bed thrall.


 


Her character is remarkably consistent, that even at this dire turn of events, she is grateful that she will not be tempted to “sin” again.  


 


Is this really true?  ‘I would have to remind myself that at least I was not being beaten and abused as I undoubtedly would have been by another Viking.’  Of course slaves and serfs the world over had/have precious few (if any) rights, but is Edvard that much of an exception?


 


Sniffle:  "Farewell, my Viking.”


 


So NOW what???


 

Reviewer: beaandmarco Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 30 Jan 2020 4:00 AM Title: Chapter 23

Really missed you!!!  Welcome back!

Reviewer: loulounana Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Jan 2020 8:34 PM Title: Chapter 23

I was so happy you updated ! Happy new year to you too !

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 25 Jan 2020 4:39 AM Title: Chapter 4

Poor Bella:  ‘What has become of me?


In such a short time, too.


 


Ouch, her husband ‘had hurt me in the most brutal of ways but he had never made me a sinner. … Now I would burn in Hell and for what? A savage heathen, who brought me pleasure only to betray me, humiliate me and mock me for giving in to him easily?’


I’m skeptical that it would even be possible for Bella to communicate to Edvard how he had hurt her.  (Thinking of the struggles modern women have faced on the same issues over the last 50 years – impossible in her situation.)


 


Uh oh!


‘No more! He could take me daily but I would never again grant him access to my body willingly. ... He admired my bodily strength? Fine, let him feel my struggle against his advances then. He did not want a mindless woman? Good, for he would hear exactly what I thought of him!’


 


Oh, she got a good shot in here:


‘"You said that I was allowed to speak freely when we are alone!" I reminded him.


"If you were respectful about it, yes!" he growled.


"How do you expect a lowly whore such as me to know the difference?" I asked, with venom dripping from my voice.’


 


This is really the bottom line, isn’t it?  “Do not forget your place, Bella!”


She might have gotten very lucky in the master who chose her, but she is far from free.


 


‘And finally my fear overrode my anger. …  My tender and playful Viking with the beautiful smile had vanished and the man who remained was a stranger to me; a livid stranger who looked as though he was more than capable of inflicting bodily harm.’


But when she “cowers” before him, that seem to bother him more than her defiance.  Interesting!


 


A heart-wrenching line:  ‘I felt so alone and frightened that for several minutes I could not stand but merely rocked back and forth on the floor while holding myself because I had no arms but my own to find comfort in.’


OMG, then Ester remarks on not only Edvard’s but also Bella’s temper, and concludes:  "Bad thrall."  …   "You, good wife…"  And then observes that Edvard needs a strong wife, and Bella is strong in body and mind.  Totally unexpected!


I laughed out loud when Ester imitated Edward’s roar.  


 


Ester is remarkably cool-headed:  ‘I was slightly stunned that she trusted me to wield a blade already. Did it not concern her to hand me a weapon?’


She seems to trust her own intuition.


 


I enjoyed the scene of the women gathering for lunch, and commenting on Edvard’s assets.  ‘They all roared with laughter whereas I gasped at their impropriety and hid my face.’


But Bella manages to join in, good for her.


Hmm:  ‘The thought of seeing him every day but never again being alone with him almost brought tears to my eyes and this shocked me greatly. How had I become so attached this quickly?’


Oh shoot, and of course Edvard overheard her comment to the other women.  


Ouch:  ‘"You will spend the rest of the day in my mother's company for you have not earned the right to be in mine," he said without emotion.’


 


Wonderful:  


‘The tiniest of whimpers escaped my throat and he smiled triumphantly against my lips before covering them again with his own. When he finally released me I was panting, my face was flushed and I felt lightheaded as I stumbled away from him as if in a daze.


His magic has grown stronger still! Perhaps he was making a spell in his absence?


Heathen dazzling!


 


I wonder if this was Ester’s decision or Edvard’s?  ‘I was slightly stunned to discover that I was to dress as nicely as them for the feast.’


 


Dang it:  ‘"It is comforting to know that my beauty has no skills in the art of deception," he said with a grin.’


 


Wow, it is SO hard for her to distinguish who the "real" Edvard is, and how to deal with him:


‘I nodded wordlessly and swallowed back my tears. He would no longer see how weak I was, how I longed for his gentler side.’


 


This is Edvard, after all, so I don’t quibble with it – but it makes me think of all the women in lesser positions throughout history, and now:  “You will find life much easier when I am pleased with you.”  How many have felt they had no choice but to yield, and abandon their true selves?


 


Interesting backstory about how her parents had struggled to feed her family.  Downright creepy though:  ‘I had noticed that food had not been lacking this past winter when I had returned to my family's house after my husband's demise and I felt certain that my father had received a pretty penny for me when he gave me away.’


When he sold her, in other words.  Marriage is so romantic...


 


At least he expresses some sympathy for her sadness at the loss of her family.  Even though he and his crew were the ones that took her from them.  Aaarrrgghh!


 


But then, a charming story about Ro-se and Emundi's early days.  She still didn’t have the choice to go home, though.


 


I’m with Bella on her final thoughts:


‘”Let us have a wonderful night."


Yes, master, I thought darkly.’


 

Reviewer: CentauRita Signed [Report This]
Date: 22 Jan 2020 5:50 AM Title: Chapter 23

Dearest She_Viking,

 

A point of clarification in this chappie 23 here on StarsLibrary Site.

note:(Chappie 5 on  the FanFiction Site is correct)

 

"...As if on cue, they began circling each other. Around me, the crowd shouted comments as Jutta lunged again and again, each time missing her target...

Q:I believe that the name Tonna should be used vs. the name Jutta.

 

And yes, I read the last 5 chappies, again...Because your Writing and Story are just THAT good!

 

Simply a Fan of your Words and Fiction...

CentauRita, NorCal Gal

 

Reviewer: cheleyk8 Signed [Report This]
Date: 20 Jan 2020 5:34 PM Title: Chapter 23

Such a good chapter! I love happy endings for all, as sappy as that is. Also, I’ve read this story since you started it and I was so pleased to see you didn’t abandon it.

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 15 Jan 2020 4:50 AM Title: Chapter 3

I have to admit that just having seen the new Dior Homme commercial, I have a particularly vivid image of this first scene, especially once it gets steamy!


 


Whew, poor girl, and he reacts so perfectly:  


‘Had I been of sound mind I felt certain that I would not have reacted so fiercely but as it were, my only thought was getting him off me. …


His weight was gone instantly…’


 


Wonderful:  ‘…he must be a great practitioner of their lustful heathen magic.’


And ‘He has the gift of words!’  Totally unexpected in a “savage”.


 


But there really is a conundrum:


‘When he gazed upon me with such adoration it was difficult to believe that he contained any coldness or that I could ever be frightened of him, but I knew that side was also in him and I would most likely witness it again when we returned to the village where he was master.’


I imagine if Bella had ever gotten close to the nobility in her own land, she might have found the same paradox.


 


This train of thought makes sense:


Why is he doing this? To humble me? To demonstrate his power over me? Is this a punishment?


But as soon as he began licking me those foolish thoughts vanished instantly.’


 


Smile:  "You do not truly wish for me to stop, do you, Bella?"


And yet this is true, when it’s done:  ‘… trying to catch my breath and filled with equal parts wonder and shame.’


 


I love your Bella:  ‘I knew that it was indecent to speak of such things but I had always been overly inquisitive and seemed to crave knowledge.’


 


I love this too:  “…the innocence in your statement only makes you more appealing to a wild savage such as myself."


 


And he finally gets the smile he has been hoping for!  (Well duh, he sure did earn it!)


 


Regarding Ro-se:


‘"She was a gift?" I asked.


I did not enjoy the thought of women being treated as objects that could be passed around and frowned.’


I wholeheartedly agree!  And yet our disapproval does nothing to change the world she finds herself in.


 


Aww:  ‘He reached for my gown and draped it over me before he spoke again. The small gesture to keep me warm pleased me beyond words. When Edvard did something so caring without even realizing it, I was convinced of the goodness of his heart.’


 


Interesting:  “I need a strong and able woman, as well as a beautiful one.”  And surprising, although no more surprising than it would be in Bella’s homeland:


"I also enjoy speaking with you and I hold your curious mind in high regard.”


 


Creepy, re the man in the village who beat his thrall:


"I am afraid he is most attached," Edvard said. "But he does not show it the way I and other men do by treating our women with kindness.”


And later when they encounter him:  ‘There was something unmistakably sinister about him, much as there had been in my late husband and I found myself wondering if all cruel men were somehow related.’


 


Boy would this be tough:


"If you witness something you must not meddle, do you understand?" he added after a while. "If you do I will be forced to punish you and I do not wish for it to ever come to that."


 


I liked that she’s honest with him about wanting to see his “manhood”.  


 


Sweet:


‘"You are a source of constant joy and wonder," he said and pulled me out into the deeper water.


"As are you," I whispered truthfully.’


 


A well-described transition:


‘We walked hand in hand until the village once again came into view and a look of regret came upon Edvard's face. Slowly, he released my hand and as I placed myself behind him with my head down I could sense a change in the way he carried himself. He walked purposely among his people, ignoring me the entire time as I struggled to keep up.’


 


I was as horrified as Bella by what Edvard said about her to the curious wife-beater.  


‘Tears stung in my eyes and I looked down on the ground, praying that it would swallow me whole. How could my Viking say such a thing?’


 


Sigh.  What a sad end to what was mostly a charming chapter.  Good job conveying Bella’s disappointment and confusion.  He had done so much to build her trust, and then *pouf*.

Reviewer: Lela Noah Signed [Report This]
Date: 14 Jan 2020 3:43 AM Title: Chapter 23

I thought u were joking when u said u will get this story ended by 2021 but it looks like u mote us e been serious .I love all ur stories and would love to see this one done. 

Reviewer: Lela Noah Signed [Report This]
Date: 14 Jan 2020 3:43 AM Title: Chapter 23

I thought u were joking when u said u will get this story ended by 2021 but it looks like u mote us e been serious .I love all ur stories and would love to see this one done. 

Reviewer: Lela Noah Signed [Report This]
Date: 14 Jan 2020 3:42 AM Title: Chapter 23

I thought u were joking when u said u will get this story ended by 2021 but it looks like u mote us e been serious .I love all ur stories and would love to see this one done. 

Reviewer: Lela Noah Signed [Report This]
Date: 14 Jan 2020 3:42 AM Title: Chapter 23

I thought u were joking when u said u will get this story ended by 2021 but it looks like u mote us e been serious .I love all ur stories and would love to see this one done. 

Reviewer: shehazi Signed [Report This]
Date: 12 Jan 2020 8:55 PM Title: Chapter 23

Thank you. What a wonderful way to begin 2020. I went back to chapter one, and am so glad I did. This is such a rich tapestry of words. Thank you so much for your perseverance throughout your own saga. Thank you for sharing.

Reviewer: Belighted Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 09 Jan 2020 12:24 PM Title: Chapter 23

I squealed when I saw an update. I think if you continued the story with quarterly updates for ten more years, I’d be in Valhalla! Lol. So glad the decade is starting on a positive note for you.

Annie B

Reviewer: Belighted Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 09 Jan 2020 12:23 PM Title: Chapter 23

I squealed when I saw an update. I think if you continued the story with quarterly updates for ten more years, I’d be in Valhalla! Lol. So glad the decade is starting on a positive note for you.

Annie B

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 06 Jan 2020 5:42 AM Title: Chapter 2

Boy, Bella’s husband was such a jerk!  And really, she had no more protection in her marriage than the unfortunate slave we encounter later.


 


But with Edvard, ‘rather than feeling terrified that he would have his way with me, I found my body relaxing and enjoying his touch.’  


Yaay!


 


A nice surprise for her:  ‘the thought of me occupying his mind even at night pleased me to no end.’  Also a surprise in that she welcomed his interest.


 


I enjoyed her frequent speculation about his “heathen magic”.  Well, her experience with Edvard was so different from everything she had known, that magic might seem a good explanation.  


 


It’s a little sad that she’s so worried about sin.  ‘I felt as though I had become a stranger to myself, no longer knowing what had happened to the virtuous, good Christian woman that I had been just yesterday…’


 


I like that she’s honest when he asks if she’s OK:  "I do not know what is to become of me.”  It will be a while before she feels any confidence in her new place.


 


Aww, when she intends to get up and help his mother with morning chores: 


"You please me, woman," he said. "You are as kind as you are beautiful. A rare combination, indeed."


 


Interesting:  ‘Grown women did not wear their hair down except for sleep and most kept it covered…’  


 


Chuckle – on the ship ‘In truth all of the men had looked alike to me…’


 


Well said – and dangerous!  ‘Everything was so strange here and I did not like that I had to worry about making the wrong decision at every turn.’


 


Yes, this would be difficult to get used to:  ‘I was beyond mortified when I finally realized that they had heard the sounds of our coupling this morning and my eyes watered.’


 


Sigh:  ‘I had never been prone to weeping but since coming here it seemed that it was all I could do. I felt useless, scared and utterly miserable.’


 


That was startling when Bella didn’t know how to explain to Ester why she was upset, but Edvard wouldn’t let it go:  ‘"You will answer my mother, serf," he said with severity in his voice.’  Yikes.


 


Interesting perspective:  "Your husband gave you no joy and you gave him no children. The gods were not pleased with your union. I give you joy and you will soon give me children.”


 


Apparently he’s not intending to be patient about this:  “But no more talk of your god, understand? That part of your life is over."


 


Well this gives us something to look forward to:  "I do not enjoy your tears. I wish that you would smile for me. I have yet to see that."  Hopefully he WILL be patient on this score.


 


Wow, when they hear a woman being beaten/abused:


"There is nothing I can do," he said without emotion. "She is his property and he can do with her as he pleases. Be thankful that you were not given to him."


 


Seeing Edvard’s son sure brought up a whole host of social lessons, didn’t it?


 


Puzzling indeed:  ‘Who was genuine? The man I spent the night with who was affectionate whenever we were alone together, or the cold master who treated me as a slave when we were in the company of others?’


 


It was interesting (and scary) that if Arndis had been cheating on Edvard with Beni, she would have been severely punished, but because she followed the rules she was released to  marry Beni.  


 


In addition to the rational divorce rules, this is a big improvement over the world Bella came from (and that we are still recovering from):  ‘Illegitimate children were outcasts in the society where I had been raised but here they were revered!’


 


This is bound to eventually cause problems:  ‘I felt a spark of anger towards Edvard for wanting something so utterly indecent.’


 


A fun scene, the race to the tree after Edward strips.  Unfortunately Bella isn’t able to fully enjoy his playfulness.  ‘I am a good Christian woman and I will not fornicate in a field as though I were a beast!’


 

Reviewer: Oruga86 Signed [Report This]
Date: 06 Jan 2020 5:36 AM Title: Chapter 23

:D

Reviewer: 30somethingmom Signed [Report This]
Date: 06 Jan 2020 1:00 AM Title: Chapter 23

I am so happy that you are back to finish the story. I look forward to reading the rest of this story and reading any others that you write.

Reviewer: 30somethingmom Signed [Report This]
Date: 06 Jan 2020 12:59 AM Title: Chapter 23

I am so happy that you are back to finish the story. I look forward to reading the rest of this story and reading any others that you write.

Reviewer: Little Strega Signed [Report This]
Date: 05 Jan 2020 6:17 AM Title: Chapter 23

This was a nice Christmas/New Years gift. Glad to hear your in a better place in your life and hope this year bring more stability for you. I'll be waiting for the next chapter. 

Reviewer: Shante17 Signed [Report This]
Date: 04 Jan 2020 1:40 AM Title: Chapter 22

Love that you still post! Makes me so happy to see this post in my email

Reviewer: wolfmantff Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 03 Jan 2020 9:13 PM Title: Chapter 23

great update

Reviewer: Lulutbo Signed [Report This]
Date: 03 Jan 2020 5:10 PM Title: Chapter 23

Over a long car ride I was able to enjoy reading this story...only hope for an update soon 🥰

Reviewer: Gelsa Signed [Report This]
Date: 02 Jan 2020 3:09 PM Title: Chapter 23

Welcome back

Reviewer: RHEE Signed [Report This]
Date: 01 Jan 2020 9:29 PM Title: Chapter 23

Ahhhj thank you for the update!!! I can't wait for the wedding festivities and birth of their baby. Merry Christmas and Happy New year!!! May this year be better than the last!

Reviewer: charlieromeo Signed [Report This]
Date: 01 Jan 2020 3:15 AM Title: Chapter 23

I love this story 

Reviewer: srw0032 Signed [Report This]
Date: 01 Jan 2020 3:09 AM Title: Chapter 23

Thank you so much for continuing with this story! This is my favorite fan fiction that I’ve ever read!!!! You are very talented and I’m thankful you’re sharing your talent with us. This chapter was great and I’m so glad Tonna and Jutta are heading back to the village with Bella 

Reviewer: sonogal Signed [Report This]
Date: 31 Dec 2019 2:09 PM Title: Chapter 23

I hope Tonna finds happiness with Bella.

Reviewer: sonogal Signed [Report This]
Date: 31 Dec 2019 12:44 PM Title: Chapter 19

I know Bella thought she was doing right, but she was stupid again. 

Reviewer: cina24 Signed [Report This]
Date: 30 Dec 2019 9:43 PM Title: Chapter 23

I went back and reread the story as it is one of my favorites.  I just love me a Viking like Edvard.  

Reviewer: cina24 Signed [Report This]
Date: 30 Dec 2019 9:43 PM Title: Chapter 23

I went back and reread the story as it is one of my favorites.  I just love me a Viking like Edvard.  

Reviewer: sonogal Signed [Report This]
Date: 30 Dec 2019 8:14 PM Title: Chapter 5

I am angry at Bella, not Edvard. He was kind, but she chose not to be grateful. She could have a cruel man again. 

Reviewer: sonogal Signed [Report This]
Date: 30 Dec 2019 7:57 PM Title: Chapter 4

Bella causes her own problems.

Reviewer: Hollywood_Twore Signed starstarstarstarhalf-star [Report This]
Date: 30 Dec 2019 4:07 AM Title: Chapter 23

I first read this story years ago on ff.net, which I haven't been on in forever as I has a twilight fic haitus. That said, I recently remembered it and went searching for it. Once I realised it wasn't on ff.net I started reading other fics instead, and fell in love with this world again. 

 

Eventually I managed to find this, and I'm so glad I did! I remembered it well, but now view it differently. Thank you so much for sharing your story, and continuing to do so, despite whatever happened to make you remove it. You're a talented writer and this is a fabulous piece of work, well written and as historically accurate as you can make it, which always helps if things are believable. I'm glad you're still writing, despite your long gaps, and I hope 2020 treats your better and brings good things. 

 

So here's thanks to writing/sharing this amazing story - I wish you sucess with finishing it. And thanks for making me return to the world of fics! Oh, and happy New year!! 

Reviewer: Moltz Signed starstarstarstarhalf-star [Report This]
Date: 29 Dec 2019 11:49 PM Title: Chapter 23

Happy New Year!
Here's to a new book deal in 2020!
Thank you for continuing to share your gift with us.
This story is so engaging. It feels like the reader can insert themselves into the background and personally observe this clan in action.

Reviewer: atina10 Signed [Report This]
Date: 29 Dec 2019 8:06 PM Title: Chapter 23

Thanks for the update ... I loved it! And have a very Happy Year! xoxo

Reviewer: atina10 Signed [Report This]
Date: 29 Dec 2019 8:06 PM Title: Chapter 23

Thanks for the update ... I loved it! And have a very Happy Year! xoxo

Reviewer: renee aubin Signed [Report This]
Date: 29 Dec 2019 4:08 AM Title: Chapter 1

Oh, SheViking, it’s so much fun to revisit this story from the beginning!


Your description of Bella’s captors was so interesting.  My favorites were ‘no better than animals walking on hind legs’ and ‘wild eyes that burned with the fires of hell’.  


 


Her thought processes between her capture and landing at the village were well imagined too.  It would be so terrifying not to be able to even understand their speech.


 


That lineup after landing is just one of the horrors of slavery that humans have inflicted on each other in so many places and times.  At least she was reasonably well treated up to that point.  I can understand why she wished ‘Murder me, vile creature!’


 


A good detail:  ‘I did hear both the laughter of children and dogs barking and I tried to hang on to those familiar sounds…’


 


Both surprising and strangely reassuring:  ‘Then I was most startled when a young fair-haired beauty came rushing in and jumped straight into the large man's arms with no fear.’  Whoa, Bella definitely has her own cultural blinders:  ‘could such heathens be capable of love?’


 


Clearly Es-ter has experience with captives, wasting no time arguing with Bella over her clothing or her bath.  There’s also comic relief that Bella’s not the only one repelled:  ‘She regarded my filthy dress with obvious disgust and threw it aside.’


 


Bella doesn’t seem to waste energy hoping to be rescued:  ‘The women back home who were taken by Vikings were never heard from again and I knew that I would not see my parents or my sisters…’ until after death.


An interesting question:


“You are a rare dark beauty," he said pensively. "And yet your skin is the color of fresh milk. Tell me, are you ill?"


This made me smile - she pushes back:


‘”Are you untouched?"


I did not want to answer his rude inquiry and remained silent.’


Edvard’s patience is limited as well:  ‘"You will not deny me what is rightfully mine," he threatened in a low voice.’


 


Truly good news:  ‘I will not be shared with others? Thank you, Lord!


 


Something I wouldn’t even have thought of:  Edvard is glad her husband has been dead for half a year.  "Then you are not with his child and I will welcome any children that you will birth."


Patriarchy is everywhere!  (rolls eyes)


 


Another thing I wouldn’t have thought of, Bella’s rights to her children:  "But what will happen to them?" I asked anxiously. "Will they be taken from me? Will they be mine?"  A little disturbing that Edvard says “they will be free because that is my will”.  Apparently the quality of their lives is entirely up to him.


 


Emundi and Ro-se ‘"have a great deal of affection for one another," he added wistfully.


Was he truly hoping for the same with me? I could not imagine it. Marriage was not something that I associated with mutual affection but rather the continuation of the family line and as a source of business.’


No doubt often true in his world as well.


Oh, good for her!  ‘"Why are you not married?" I asked boldly.’  His explanation of the liberal divorce rules was astonishing compared to the Catholic rules I grew up with!


 


Smile, very canon:  ‘"You have many questions," he observed.’


 


She was even brave enough to call him on having stolen her from her life.  He says “I feel no remorse."  I guess he wouldn’t if he were simply doing what he had seen all around him all his life.


 


Unlike her husband:  "I will not harm you, Bella. I gain no pleasure from witnessing your tears. Why are you so afraid?”  Boy, if he hadn’t had at least rudimentary English, they could not have had this conversation and he would not have understood the reason for her fear.  Wonderful:  “Thor's hammer, woman! Why would I strike you?"


 


Nor surprising that she asks “why do you care”, and I liked his answer:  “I prefer a warm and willing woman in my arms. I want you to smile when you see me and embrace me eagerly when we are alone."


 


There’s a lot of this:  ‘I did not understand the feeling but it was certainly not unpleasant.’  Her husband must have been totally indifferent/incompetent.


Good description:  she ‘chased a feeling that I did not fully comprehend.  I only knew that with each stroke of my Viking's fingers, my body wanted more and more…’


 


This made me laugh out loud:  ‘…everything in my upbringing told me that Vikings were wild and dangerous creatures who used human skulls for drinking mugs and were covered in filth. But Edvard was clean and so far I had only seen ordinary cups and mugs.’


 


Nice:  ‘His enjoyment in taking me should not be any concern of mine, and yet I found that I wanted to bring him pleasure just as he had bestowed it on me.’


Funny how it works that way!


Giggle:  ‘his heathen magic of kisses and touches.’


 


Unexpectedly sweet:  ‘He moved down my body and rested his head on my chest, his arms now around my middle. I weaved my fingers through his long hair and drew a deep breath.’


 


Poor baby:  ‘I felt so lost all of a sudden and my tears finally spilled over into sobs that I could not hide from Edvard.’  At least he has the kindness to hold her and let her cry.  Again, these folks have plenty of experience with captives.


 


Poor baby again:  “Do not leave me out there. Let me sleep here on your floor…”


 


Aww:  ‘I could not make heads or tails of my thoughts anymore. Too much had happened too fast and I started weeping again while I tried to explain myself in between sobs.’


 


Thank you!  ‘Bella's fear of being passed around to all the men is probably much more of an accurate depiction of the life of a slave girl, but I am neither interested in reading nor writing something like that.’  Thanks also for your research!


 

Reviewer: rodeinti Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 8:32 PM Title: Chapter 23

Welcome back..Thank you for the updates...I hope Edward makes it back to his village to marry Bella..Well done..until you post again

Reviewer: rodeinti Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 8:32 PM Title: Chapter 23

Welcome back..Thank you for the updates...I hope Edward makes it back to his village to marry Bella..Well done..until you post again

Reviewer: rodeinti Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 8:32 PM Title: Chapter 23

Welcome back..Thank you for the updates...I hope Edward makes it back to his village to marry Bella..Well done..until you post again

Reviewer: troberts Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 3:20 PM Title: Chapter 23

I was so excited thanks so much I have missed you so much

Reviewer: troberts Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 6:58 AM Title: Chapter 23

I was so excited thanks so much I have missed you so much

Reviewer: troberts Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 6:48 AM Title: Chapter 23

I was so excited thanks so much I have missed you so much

Reviewer: troberts Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 6:48 AM Title: Chapter 23

I was so excited thanks so much I have missed you so much

Reviewer: MaryMary Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 6:32 AM Title: Chapter 20

Now after killing him stage it as he accidently fell on the knife while fighting. LOL

Reviewer: MaryMary Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 6:32 AM Title: Chapter 20

Now after killing him stage it as he accidently fell on the knife while fighting. LOL

Reviewer: MaryMary Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 3:24 AM Title: Chapter 16

I am rereading. Bad Edvard.. lol

Reviewer: MaryMary Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 3:24 AM Title: Chapter 16

I am rereading. Bad Edvard.. lol

Reviewer: MaryMary Signed [Report This]
Date: 28 Dec 2019 3:24 AM Title: Chapter 16

I am rereading. Bad Edvard.. lol

Reviewer: Azlady2003 Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 Dec 2019 11:58 PM Title: Chapter 23

Love the update. Can't wait for more....glad life settled down for you

Reviewer: Jane3105 Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 27 Dec 2019 12:53 PM Title: Chapter 23

Great chapter

its good to see you writing again

Reviewer: Lilygirl88 Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 Dec 2019 7:32 AM Title: Chapter 23

Happy holidays to you too!! Sorry to hear the deal for the book fell thru. Hopefully sometime better is in the works for it and you.

So happy for an update and even if it does take 3 years for the rest I’ll still be here. I’ve been with you from the very beginning back on ffn and have followed the story here after it was pulled so I’m sticking to see it’s ending.
Glad Tonna survived, I was left wondering last chapter if she was going to be killed or not. Can’t wait to see if she finds her better half or not in the next couple of chapters.

Happy New Years and hope 2020 brings you and your family many joys.

Reviewer: Lilygirl88 Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 Dec 2019 7:32 AM Title: Chapter 23

Happy holidays to you too!! Sorry to hear the deal for the book fell thru. Hopefully sometime better is in the works for it and you.

So happy for an update and even if it does take 3 years for the rest I’ll still be here. I’ve been with you from the very beginning back on ffn and have followed the story here after it was pulled so I’m sticking to see it’s ending.
Glad Tonna survived, I was left wondering last chapter if she was going to be killed or not. Can’t wait to see if she finds her better half or not in the next couple of chapters.

Happy New Years and hope 2020 brings you and your family many joys.

Reviewer: movieandbookgirl Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 Dec 2019 1:01 AM Title: Chapter 23

Thanks for the update! I was happy they were able

to save/protect jutta and tonna. Look forward to the fitire

chapters! 

Reviewer: movieandbookgirl Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 Dec 2019 1:00 AM Title: Chapter 23

Thanks for the update! I was happy they were able

to save/protect jutta and tonna. Look forward to the fitire

chapters! 

Reviewer: movieandbookgirl Signed [Report This]
Date: 27 Dec 2019 1:00 AM Title: Chapter 23

Thanks for the update! I was happy they were able

to save/protect jutta and tonna. Look forward to the fitire

chapters! 

Reviewer: Luereetwilitejunki Signed [Report This]
Date: 26 Dec 2019 9:34 PM Title: Chapter 23

I was so happy to see you were back!! I love this story and can't wait for the Wedding!!!

Reviewer: debslmac Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 26 Dec 2019 2:37 PM Title: Chapter 23

:)

Reviewer: flyrbrd Signed [Report This]
Date: 26 Dec 2019 12:23 PM Title: Chapter 23

Thanks! I love this story

Reviewer: tiggerlady Signed [Report This]
Date: 26 Dec 2019 10:23 AM Title: Chapter 1

All the best for 2020!

Reviewer: RHEE Signed [Report This]
Date: 01 Dec 2019 7:21 PM Title: Chapter 22

Noooo not a cliffy I need an update...

Reviewer: RHEE Signed [Report This]
Date: 01 Dec 2019 7:21 PM Title: Chapter 22

Noooo not a cliffy I need an update...

Reviewer: Nikkiekierans Signed starstarstarstarstar [Report This]
Date: 15 Nov 2019 4:40 PM Title: Chapter 22

Love this story hope you update soon. 

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