…It was midnight before the Evil One came down
out of the mountains and made his way to Baugi’s farm.
He introduced himself, claimed he had been walking all day,
then asked for a meal, and to stop over in one of Baugi’s barns.
“What a time to come calling,” snorted Baugi.
“Is something wrong,” asked the Evil One, affecting concern.
“My farmhands have been killed,” said Baugi banging his fist into a wall.
The farmhouse shuddered.
“All nine of them!”
“I have an idea,” said the Evil One, “I will cover for them.”
Baugi looked the Evil One up and down, incredulously,
and then he grinned, “What wages would you want?”
“One sip of Suttung’s mead,” said the Evil One.
Baugi shook his head, “the mead is my brother’s, I have no claim on it.”
“To be a poet,” mused the Evil One, ignoring him, “is by far the finest thing.”
“No one save Gunnlod has ever seen a drop of the mead,” said Baugi firmly, “that is how it is.”
“Those are my terms,” said the Evil One, turning to leave.
“I could talk to Suttung,” said Baugi, “Work
the summer through and I’ll see what I can do.”