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Recap / A Thing of Vikings Chapter 16 "Bindings..."

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Book I, Chapter 16

It is generally agreed upon by historians that the moment where King Magnus Olofsson began to truly assert his own authority over Einar Thambarskelfir's was the first attempted assassination of Hiccup Haddock and Astrid Hofferson, on their first state visit to Magnus's court in 1041. While Einar remained high in the young monarch's councils with his considerable political power and influence, his grip on the young king only continued to loosen. Given Einar's desires for power, this became the primary source of conflict between the two of them over the ensuing years.

Magnus's growth away from Einar's control, however, took time. There is no significant debate that Einar's decisions were the instigating force behind, for example, the marital alliances for both Magnus and Wulfhild. In that specific case, while Magnus could have resisted the directives of his regent, it is generally agreed that doing so would have caused an open rift within his court, especially given the later developments and innovations by Haddock that openly terrified Einar and the other nobles.

Corpus Historiae Berkiae, 1396


Tropes That Appear In This Chapter:

  • Batman Gambit: Jørgen is in the habit of questioning a warrior's toughness just to make sure said warriors actually take their medicine. He is pleased Astrid reacted to his prodding by drinking the remedy just like nearly every other warrior he pulled this on.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me:
    Fishlegs: Why'd you bring me [food]? You could have given it to Gobber, or to one of the other cooks, or just eaten it yourself. Why?
    Heather: I... um... well... Hi, Fishlegs. I'm Heather, former thrall of a brutal king, and you're the guy that they said that I was going to be given to.
    Fishlegs: So why do you ever want to see me again?
    Heather: Because... Because you were nice to me. And it's a small island. And because, even before the Chief said I was free... you were being kind and polite.
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  • Berserk Button: When Jørgen questions Astrid's Heroic Willpower as a warrior when she is unwilling to drink his home-remedy, Hiccup is quick to start backing away. Turns out the healer is in the habit of pushing buttons just to make sure the warriors actually take their medicine and is pleased Astrid reacted by drinking the remedy just like nearly every other warrior he pulled this on.
  • The Fundamentalist: When Magnus asks Father Michael to bless Astrid to ensure a speedy recovery, he denies his request because she isn't Christian. It takes Magnus to remind him that Jesus taught people to provide for strangers regardless of such things before the priest relents and begrudgingly go through with it.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: In the assassin's attempts on Hiccup and Astrid's lives while they were under Sacred Hospitality only further solidifies his growing loyalties to his new friends, Magnus bending the knee in-front of his court to ensure they do not take offense and going so far as to swear upon the blood of Christ for this (with Father Michale officially bearing witness).
    Hiccup: That was a bit foolish.
    Magnus: Meant every word.


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