Rated: ASR · Letter/Memo · Fanfiction · #2235382
Alvin, Stalka, Stoick, Spitelout
§ § §
Even though Spitelout is part of clan Jorgenson, Halvar considers him as a blood son. To Halvar, he is Spitelout Clan Haddock Clan Jorgenson. It is never stated, but all the Haddocks treat him as such. Even before Floplout’s death, Halvar saw Spitelout as another son, and upon Floplout’s death, Halvar considered him blood kin. Veronika saw him as the same. Spitelout and Gobber are Haddock children, and Gobber was recruited to be a big brother to Stoick. After Spitelout’s birth, Ragna gets new insight into having and raising children, and after her husband’s death, begins considering the Haddock children her own, too. Veronika and Ragna, once rivals, become increasingly close, with both women knowing the children are shared. As Veronika falls ill and declines in health, they become the closest of friends. Ragna protects Veronika, continues the pretense that she is fine, and spends a lot of time at the house. Steered by Veronika, Ragna instructs Brenna in her women’s work, and encourages all the children. The boys she gently prods into line, under a facade of sternness. She helps Veronika fulfill her final desires. Veronika orders weapons made for all four of her sons, to be presented to them at certain times. She teaches them to dance. Flint is too young to properly remember the steps, but the women drill them into the older children, who can teach him and Spitelout.
Veronika teaches Ragna her secret recipe for cider, so she can make it and continue to pass it down. It is a family secret, brought from Meathead and given freely to Veronika’s dearest friend. They form a bond, one they agree will transcend death. Veronika tells Ragna that she is overjoyed Ragna will look after their family. She then insists Ragna “take and enjoy” Halvar, the man they both love, who loves them both back. She wants them to marry, and gives her blessing.It comforts them both. They work to keep the children nearby, setting up a training ground for Stoick close to Haddock House, but do not trap them. Brenna has a hiatus from formal lessons to focus on women’s work. Stoick assists tradesmen, learning how to mend nets and haul fish, make nails and sharpen weapons, and other such tasks. He trains, and his schooling becomes centered on things an heir needs to know. All his reading, writing, figuring, geography are based around this. He can do this at home, where the material, records, and Chief’s family live. Flint is given more responsibilities when at home. Veronika no longer helps the women of the tribe. The cannier ones know why, and create a network of women within Berk to do as she did to serve the tribe. Ragna is used as a pipeline to provide for the Haddocks in this time, bringing items into their home. As Veronika’s time shortens, Ragna and Spitelout spend nights at Haddock House. She and Veronika are friends as close as sisters. Veronika has occasional visitors, and chases the children and sometimes everyone, out of the house so she may speak privately. Coalie comes and she places weapons orders for the boys and an excellent staff for Brenna. The seamstress purchases and holds in reserve beautiful fabric for Brenna, for her wedding gown or other special event. Everywhere she leaves traces of herself, and commissions a family portrait, with Ragna, Spitelout, and Gobber included. She spends hours writing and sewing, especially for Halvar. She loves her family with all she has, while both women watch Halvar’s heart break a bit at a time.
§ § §
Spitelout is a member of clan Jorgenson, and Halvar makes certain Spitelout knows about his clan. The history, the heroes, the warrior tradition, and the place his clan holds in the tribe, are all taught by Halvar, with assistance from Ragna and Stoick. Spitelout learns about the drive to succeed, the will to fight, and the search for justice and parity clan Jorgenson embodies. He learns of his clan’s generosity in bringing Valka’s family into the Jorgenson fold. He hears how his father Floplout and Ragna sacrificed for the good of the tribe. (The truth is more complex. Floplout should have prospered; as a fisherman, he could easily feed his family. With the ongoing dragon raids, the tribe expected him to give up more of his share to them. He did, but received no support from his clanhead, because he had no children to feed). Spitelout is trained, much as Stoick, in the history and culture of the tribe. Spitelout learns things outside of a typical child’s education, because Halvar is Chief. Some in clan Jorgenson are wary, thinking the chief will want him to join clan Haddock. One of Halvar’s generals is a Jorgenson, and doesn’t challenge Halvar’s intentions, but questions remain. The most recent clanhead is taking a wait-and-see attitude, and does not question what goes on.
One day, the clanhead decides to speak with Spitelout and suss out the situation. Spitelout is respectful, stopping, standing in the manner Halvar taught him: feet planted firmly, shoulders squared, chest forward, spine straight, look at the person in front of you, don’t fidget. He calls his clanhead sir, and inclines his head in a fitting manner. Spitelout refers to Halvar as the Chief, not his father. Over time, the clanhead meets multiple times with Spitelout, and realizes the Haddock Chief is raising his stepson with chieftain training and a thorough knowledge of his clan.
§ § §