"ERIK THE VIKING"
Flames begin to lick upwards from the bottom of the screen.
Suddenly all hell breaks loose. Screaming, yelling. Black
figures flash across the foreground, with the flames still
burning behind. There follows a confusion of burning, raping,
killing and looting -- we don't clearly see what's going on.
Suddenly we cut to the interior of a hut. The door is in the
process of being broken down. The camera pans onto the close-
up face of an attractive girl who is staring in horrified
fascination at the door. Her arms are white with fresh dough
Suddenly the door bursts open and a wild-looking Viking leaps
into the hut. He holds a sword. He looks around wildly and
then his eyes come to rest on the girl.
This Viking, I'm afraid, is Erik. We are about to see him in
the worst possible light so be prepared. The girl, whose
name is Helga, cowers, and looks terrified but resolute.
Erik glances round.
Then slowly he advances on the girl, forcing her back onto a
chest. Erik holds his sword to Helga's throat with his right
hand, while his left hand searches to find the thongs holding
up his trousers.
He is clearly having difficulties trying to hold his heavy
sword to Helga's throat at he same time as undoing his
trousers. He fumbles and lowers his sword for a moment.
Have you done this sort of thing
Me? Of course! I've been looting and
pillaging up and down the coast.
Looting and pillaging, eh?
(on the defensive)
What about the raping?
It's obvious you haven't raped anyone
in your life.
He covers her mouth with his free hand, and looks round to
make sure no one's heard. Then he carries on trying to undo
his trousers, but he is now somewhat more than half-hearted
about it. Helga watches suspiciously.
Do you LIKE women?
Erik is clearly shocked and stung by the insinuation. He
Of course I like women... I LOVE
(pointing out the
You don't love ME.
No... right... this is RAPE... Mark
you, I'm not saying I couldn't get
to like you... in fact... well, to
be quite honest, I prefer it when
there's some sort of mutual feeling
between two people...
What -- rape?
No. It isn't rape then, is it?
Oh, get it over with.
I don't suppose... no...
I don't suppose you... you DO like
me at all?
What d'you expect? You come in here,
burn my village, kill my family and
try to rape me...
This is too much for Erik. We withers under the irony.
I'll kill you if you say anything
about this to anyone.
About raping me?
About NOT raping you...
You DON'T like it, do you?
Well it just seems a little bit crude,
What about the killing and looting?
That's just as crude, isn't it?
Oh well -- you've GOT to do them.
Why? Why have you got to go round
killing and looting?
To pay for the next expedition, of
But that's a circular argument! If
the only reason for going on an
expedition is the killing and looting
and the only reason for the killing
and looting is to pay for the next
expedition, they cancel each other
Oh! Stop talking as if we were
Well you started it.
I just said I didn't feel like raping
And I was just saying that rape is
no MORE pointless or crude than all
the killing and looting that goes
Erik vents of his frustration on the already shattered door.
(he'd forgotten about
Two more Vikings burst in with eyes blazing. They have the
very unfortunate names of Ernest and Jennifer, but it doesn't
really matter, for reasons which will become obvious very
quickly. They are also slightly drunk.
Jennifer the Viking sways and leans against a door post. The
marauder's eyes come to rest on Erik and Helga who are
standing, fully clothed, about six feet apart. They look
He raped me standing up.
There is a pause. Erik looks up at Helga. Why has she saved
his face by telling this lie? Jennifer the Viking turns to
You finished, then?
Oh... yes... I suppose so...
Right! Me first!
No! I asked!
Ernest leaps on top of Helga and pins her to the ground.
Jennifer joins in. Erik looks stunned for a moment. Then he
suddenly leaps to Helga's defense.
Leave her alone!
He pulls Jennifer off, but Jennifer fights back. Erik forces
Jennifer back until he falls into the kneading trough. They
fight in the dough for some moments, until Erik runs Jennifer
through. The dough is stained red, and the film is rid of
such an inappropriately named Viking once and for all.
Erik then turns his attention on Ernest who is still on top
of Helga. Without a moment's hesitation, Erik runs him through
the back. Ernest screams. So does Helga. Erik turns white,
and pulls out his sword. Ernest falls over into a heap with
his co-misnomer, and Erik kneels beside Helga to find a
bloodstain under her breast where he has inadvertently run
her through. She is clearly not long for this world.
Thanks for saving me from a fate
worse than death.
I didn't mean to!
(gasping for breath)
Oh, that's all right then... it's
the thought... that counts...
Erik cradles her head and tries helplessly to staunch the
You told them I raped you -- why?
I dunno... you looked so... so
Why should you care?
Why... should YOU care?
Tell me your name?
Helga looks up at him, but dies in his arms, without ever
saying her name.
Tell me... what IS it...?
Erik realizes she has gone. He gazes at her for some time.
He looks around at the two dead bodies beside them. Then he
listens to the sound of raping and slaughter continuing on
the outside. Screams and bloodthirsty shuts echo alongside
the roar of flames and the cries of animals. The camera tracks
into a big close-up on Erik.
SUPERIMPOSE THE TITLE: "ERIK THE VIKING"
SECOND TITLE: "TIM ROBBINS"
Mix through to wide shot of the burning village. Figures
running here and there.
Superimpose the rest of the opening titles.
By the last of the opening titles the last of the flames are
Cut to a close-up of a very loud-looking Viking screaming
into the camera, as he hurls an axe. This Viking's name is
The axe thuds into the wall a few inches away from the face
of a frightened girl, Unn, who is pinned to the wall with
her braids spread out. The Vikings are hurling axes at her a
la Kirk Douglas in "The Vikings".
Several Vikings sitting at ale-bench, laugh in a rather
unpleasant way. Erik, however, frowns. He is sitting at a
table on a dais, next to his grandfather, the chief of the
village. His grandfather almost chokes with merriment. Erik's
mother glances at him with some hostility. Meanwhile the
drunken Thorfinn has just lifted the totally legless Ivar
the Boneless up off the floor and presses an axe into his
hand. A tremor of nervousness ripples round the females in
the Mead Hall. Ivar is clearly in no condition to throw
anything, except, perhaps, the contents of his stomach. Unn
Finally, amidst much giggling, Ivar throws wildly, and the
axe smashes into a jug being carried by one of the serving
girls. The menfolk erupt into drunken hysterics at this. The
women clearly feel that the occasion is getting out of hand.
But before any of them can work up enough courage to
intervene, Thorfinn Skull-Splitter has thrust an axe into
the hands of the even more plastered Sven the Berserk. Now
Sven is not the Viking to let a little matter like not being
able to see straight stop him heaving the axe at a young
maiden. He takes the axe and whirls it wildly over his head.
Even the other drunken Vikings realize this could be
dangerous, and they cower behind the table. Sven lets go of
the axe. Unn shuts her eyes prepared for the worst. There is
a dull thud and a grunt and then a whoop of mirth. Unn opens
her eyes to find that the axe has come to rest in the back
of a totally stupefied Viking who merely slumps forward onto
the table he is sitting at. On the opposite side sits Harald
Missionary, a rather seedy cleric who has long since given
up trying to convert the pagans and found solace in their
mead. He thinks about intervening, but decides that it's a
bit late really and that he might as well finish off his ale-
cup instead. Grimhild Housewife (his only admirer) refills
it for him.
At this moment, however, the axe-throwers have run out of
axes, so, as they go to retrieve the ones they've thrown,
Harald Missionary salves his conscience by lurching across
to the unfortunate Unn. He pokes his dog-eared bible under
If you were thinking of converting,
my dear, this would be an... ideal
(who is used to rebuffs)
No, of course not...
You might not get another chance,
At this moment another axe thuds into the wall, speeding up
Harald's desire to get back to the ale-bench.
Yes, of course... I'll pray for you
anyway, my dear...
Suddenly an axe shatters a large earthware vessel.
Yes.. That's what I'll do...
Harald scuttles back to the ale-bench as fast as he can.
Erik meanwhile, stares in astonishment as, for a fleeting
moment, he sees Helga, the girl he accidentally killed,
standing there with her braids spread out in place of Unn.
He shakes his head and the vision passes.
In the meantime, however, Ivar's mum (perhaps the toughest
lady in the village) has decided that enough is enough.
Let her go!
SVEN THE BERSERK
Why should we let her go?
We haven't hit a single braid yet!
The Vikings all guffaw.
Ivar's mum has had enough. She throws the contents of a jug
of ale over Thorfinn. He is shocked, but after the first
shock he grins evilly, because now he's been given carte
blanche to do the thing he enjoys doing most. Without another
thought he throws a vicious right hook at Ivar's mum and
lays her out cold.
Erik reacts with disgust.
His granddad, however, gives a whoop of glee.
Whoah! Heee! That showed her!
Meanwhile a little shriveled old man is jumping up and down.
INGEMUND THE OLD
Hey! He hit my wife!
Ingemund starts to go for Thorfinn, but Thorhild beats him
to it. She grabs one of the long-handled cooking griddles
from the fires and swings it at Thorfinn.
Thorfinn, however, ducks, and the red-hot griddle hits Sven
the Berserk, who is standing with his back to Thorfinn.
Sven screams and goes berserk, turning round and hitting
Thorfinn who is now standing upright again.
INGEMUND THE OLD
Leave him alone.
Ingemund hits Sven. Thangbrand hits Ingemund and a general
fight breaks out.
Erik's granddad clearly considers this the highlights of the
evening, but Erik looks at it in disgust and at his granddad
in despair. Eventually he gets up and walk out of the Mead
His granddad notices and frowns. He knows something's wrong
with his grandson but hasn't a clue what it could be. Erik's
mother frowns and nods to his granddad.
Grandad gets up and fights his way through the melee to follow
Erik out of the Hall.
The snow lies thick over the village as Erik's grandfather
joins his grandson beside the little quay. Erik is staring
broodily into the night.
What's the matter, son?
Erik doesn't reply. His grandfather glances back at the Mead
Hall, whence the sound of the fight drift across the snow.
We're missing all the fun...
What's it all about?
We toil and labor, we loot and
pillage, rape and kill... and yet...
You talking piffle, son?
Where does it all get us, Grandpa?
Who have you been talking to?
I met this girl...
It's always the women that start the
She got me thinking...
So? What'd you do to her?
Erik stops in his tracks -- as if brought up short by the
horror of what he has done.
I... I... KILLED her...
That's my boy!
Erik's grandfather gives him a paternal hug. Erik looks at
him and thinks about the generation gap.
FEET RUNNING IN THE SNOW - DAY
Erik looks around him and calls out again.
Erik runs into the distance -- a small figure against the
dramatic wintry landscape.
REMOTE, BARREN MOUNTAINSIDE
Erik climbs up into shot, and continues climbing until he
reaches a cave. He enters it. As his eyes get used to the
dark he can make out a few signs of life: a cooking pot on a
fire, a straw bed, a pile of rune-sticks.
There is a bundle of rags behind Erik. A head rises from it.
This is Freya.
Ah... Erik... Erik the "Viking"...
It is not clear whether her words are not a little mocking.
Now what CAN you want with me, Erik
I shouldn't have come.
They will make fun of you for
listening to an old woman's stories?
Erik doesn't reply. Freya watches him craftily.
Young men are only interested in
fighting and killing.
Erik looks up at her sharply. It is as if she has read his
But has it always been like that,
Freya? From the beginning of time?
Freya doesn't reply. Instead she walks to the mouth of the
cave. Erik follows her. They look out at the grey, desolate
landscape. Nothing but arctic wastes, snow and desolation.
Above them the black clouds boil ceaselessly.
What do you see, Erik?
I see the world.
Is it night or day, Erik?
It is day, of course, Freya.
Is it summer or winter, Erik?
Erik looks round at the snowy wastes and ten back at Freya,
The winter is past, thank goodness,
Freya. It is summer.
Freya puts her face close to Erik's and peers into his eyes.
Have you ever seen the sun, Erik?
The sun is up beyond the clouds --
where it always is.
But have you ever seen it? Think
Of course not... but... when I was a
child... I remember a dream.... it
was as if the whole sky was blue...
The sky WAS blue, Erik... once.
Erik looks at her.
The Old Stories tell of an age that
would come such as this -- when Fenrir
the Wolf would swallow the sun, and
a Great Winter would settle upon the
world. It was to be an axe age, a
sword age, a storm age, when brother
would turn against brother, and men
would fight each other until the
world would finally be destroyed.
Erik looks out across the bleak and gloomy landscape and the
black, boiling clouds in the sky.
(almost to himself)
Then... this is the Age of Ragnarok?
Freya turns to go back into the cave.
Erik re-enters the cave.
Is there nothing men can do?
The Gods are asleep, Erik.
I will go and wake them up!
Freya turns and looks at him. She clearly enjoys his earnest
enthusiasm, but is afraid he doesn't know what he is talking
Tell me what I must do, Freya!
Freya thinks for some moments. The she speaks.
Erik... Far out in the midst of the
Western Ocean there is a land... men
call it Hy-Brasil. There you will
find a horn that is called Resounding.
You must take the Horn Resounding,
and three times you must blow it.
The first note will take you to
Asgaard. The second will awaken the
Gods, and the third note will bring
you home. But remember... once you
are in the spell of the Horn, hatred
will destroy you.
Erik turns to go and then hesitates.
And will the dead ever return, Freya?
That I cannot tell you.
A BIG CLOSEUP OF A HEAD BEING BANGED ON THE GROUND
It is Thorfinn Skull-Splitter's. The person doing the banging
is an enraged Sven the Berserk.
Suddenly Erik pushes his way through the crowd and separates
them. There is general disgruntlement all round, and murmurs
of: "Who does he think he is?"
What are you doing, Erik? Thorfinn
just said Sven's grandfather died of
INGEMUND THE OLD
They must fight to the death.
That's right! Sven must kill me.
Stay out of this.
What's it to do with you?
Sven grids his teeth and struggles to get at Thorfinn, but
Erik still keeps them apart.
Aren't you afraid of death, Thorfinn
Not death by the sword! It means I
shall drink in Valhalla with the
Engaged in his usual business of chatting up any available
You don't still believe in all that
Valhalla stuff, do you?
THORHILD THE FEMALE
Fine... right... just checking.
He moves off.
And you, Sven, aren't you afraid of
crossing the Rainbow Bridge to
I will join my grandfather there.
He's not in Valhalla! He died of old
They start trying to kill each other again, and crash through
a fence into the pig-sty. Pigs squeal and run in all
Leave them alone! Keep out of it,
The others pull Erik away.
There's only one way to settle it.
He MUST kill me!
Yes! That's right!
Sven struggles again to oblige, and they both topple into
the duck pond. Erik dives back to keep them apart.
There is another way.
Who gets killed?
Nobody gets killed.
He starts attacking Sven again. Erik decides there is only
one way to make his point. He lets fly with his fists and
lays both the antagonists out for a moment.
But it will be dangerous. Maybe none
of us will return.
SNORRI THE MISERABLE
Ah well, that's much more sensible
than just Thorfinn getting killed.
Shall we all go and pack now?
What are you talking about, Erik?
What if we could find Bi-Frost the
This causes a sensation amongst everyone watching, on the
lines of "You can't do that" and so on. They scoff at Erik.
FIND the Rainbow Bridge?
Find it... AND cross it!
Super-sensation amongst everyone -- except for Harald
Missionary who shakes his head sadly.
Look! You can't find somewhere that
Only the dead reach Asgaard, Erik.
What's the matter? Are you afraid to
Thorfinn and Sven are put on the defensive.
Of course we're not afraid to try,
Erik rounds on Thorfinn, sensing he had the advantage.
Thorfinn's mental powers find it hard to articulate any
proposition on such a vast metaphysical concept. Sven comes
to his rescue.
Nobody's ever crossed the Rainbow
Bridge to Asgaard.
We'd be the first!
You mean we'd be dead?
No! We'd be the first living men to
set foot in the Halls of the Gods.
Pause. Uncomfortable shifting.
I don't know -- but I'm not afraid
Well I'M certainly not, either.
Neither am I.
Then you'll come.
But there isn't such a place as...
THORFINN & SVEN
What d'you say?
Well... I'm game.
Erik grins. He has persuaded them against their will.
Aren't you going to go on fighting?
SVEN & THORFINN
There is general disappointment all around.
IVAR THE BONELESS
Oh, go on...
Just have a bit of a fight.
INGEMUND THE OLD
I'll fight someone.
You're too old.
INGEMUND THE OLD
No, I ain't.
AN ADZE STRIKING TIMBER
The Viking's ship, Golden Dragon, is being repaired and fitted
out for a journey. Erik is there, directing operations.
The camera tracks through all the activity and finally comes
to rest on Keitel Blacksmith. He is a magnificent mountain
of a man in an Arnold Schwarzeneggerish sort of way. He
hammers a sword, and sparks fly, but his eyes keep returning
to the preparations for the voyage. Clearly something is
His assistant, Loki, sidles up to him.
Wish you were going too?
Keitel grunts angrily and plunges the sword into cold water.
Steam and bubbles.
But you CAN'T because you're too
Keitel pulls the sword out of the water and tests it. It
slices like as razor, Loki watches.
Ooh, that's a good one! You could
charge Halfdan fifteen for that one.
Yes, it is good. But I told him ten.
You could charge him what you like.
Loki takes the sword from Keitel and stacks it alongside a
lot more freshly made swords.
You just can't make enough swords
and spears and knives and daggers to
satisfy the demand. You could charge
Halfdan twenty and he'd pay it.
Oh, I couldn't do that! The
Blacksmith's Code says...
Yes yes... of course.... the
Keitel goes back to his forge and pulls out a fresh dollop
of white-hot ore. Loki comes up behind him.
If this IS the Age of Ragnarok, Keitel
Blacksmith, it is GOOD to us.
(banging with his
Can't make enough swords!
BANG! BANG! BANG!
Can't make enough axe-heads!
BANG! BANG! BANG!
But, Keitel, if Erik ever finds the
Horn Resounding... if he ever crosses
Bi-Frost, the Rainbow Bridge... if
he ever wakens the gods..
Keitel stops smiting the metal on his forge. He stares into
They chase Fenrir the Wolf from the
The Age of Ragnarok ends...
The bottom falls out of the sword
It's not just YOUR livelihood that's
at stake but your son's, and the
livelihood of ALL blacksmiths.
(this touches a nerve
in his muscular mind)
My brother blacksmiths!
The Blacksmith's Code says I must...
Honour and protect all blacksmiths.
(as if reciting his
Together we stand!
You can't let Erik do THAT.
Loki smiles. He has Keitel playing into his hands, although
Keitel doesn't realize it.
SOME DAYS LATER
The expedition is set to leave. Thorfinn Skull-Splitter taking
leave of his mum and dad.
And you've got BOTH axes?
And something to sharpen them with?
And don't forget: never let your
enemy get behind you.
And keep your sword greased.
Yes, Mother. Goodbye, Dad.
And don't forget to wash -- you know --
And if you have to kill somebody,
KILL them! Don't stop to think about
I never do...
SVEN THE BERSERK
Who is also being lectured. The lecture is coming from his
father -- Ulf the Maddeningly Calm.
It's a tradition.
I know, Dad.
I was a Berserk for King Harald
You went berserk...
I went berserk in every battle I
ever fought for King Harald...
So did your father...
So did my father and his father before
But it's a responsibility...
But it's a responsibility being a
I must only let the red rage...
You must only let the red rage take
hold of you in the thick of battle.
(losing his temper)
I KNOW! I'VE HEARD IT ALL 1 THOUSAND
A sudden silence falls, as all the village turns to stare
nervously at Sven. He goes berserk and demolishes a nearby
hut with his head. Ulf the Maddeningly Calm shakes his head.
No no... you'll never make a Berserk.
If you let it out now you'll have
nothing left for battle...
Besides... it's dangerous.
It's the end of a family tradition.
In another corner of the village Leif the Lucky is standing
with his pregnant girlfriend.
You will wait?
What d'you expect me to do?
She takes a bracelet off her arm and gives it to Leif.
Wear this for luck.
Leif looks at it.
That's why they call me... Leif the
Dumping a bag on board the ship. Grimhild Housewife is helping
him. Snorri looks at him in surprise.
You coming? You don't even believe
I thought I might do a bit of business
on the way.
You're wasting your time.
Listen. I've been in this dump for
sixteen years and I haven't made a
There was Thorbjorn Vifilsson's wife.
You converted HER.
Thorbjorn Vifilsson's wife became a
Buddhist, not a Christian.
Same thing, isn't it?
No, it is NOT.
MEANWHILE IN ANOTHER PART OF THE VILLAGE
Loki is strapping a large consignment of swords onto a pony.
He glances round and then sneaks surreptitiously out of the
village, over the barren hills of Norway, under the boiling
black skies of Ragnarok. Back at the quayside, Golden Dragon
is ready for the journey. Erik addresses the villagers.
Well... we'll be off now...
Erik's grandad waits for some time before he realizes that
Erik isn't intending to say anything else.
You need to say a bit more than that!
Oh... er... yes...
The faces of the village-folk turn towards him. There are
many moist eyes. Erik's mother starts to cry.
Oh, there, Mum...
(he turns and addresses
Don't be sad.... You all know why
we're going, so don't grieve. Maybe
untold dangers do lie ahead of us,
and some of you may well be looking
at the one your love for the last
Someone bursts out sobbing. Erik desperately tries to rally
But don't grieve! Even though the
Hordes of Muspel tear us limb from
limb... or the Fire Giants burn each
and every one of us to a cinder...
...though we may be swallowed by the
Dragon of the North Sea or fall off
the Edge of the World... don't cry.
No! Don't cry....
By this time most of the village is blubbering profusely.
He has his arm round his weeping girlfriend.
Sh... There... it's all fantasy,
there's no Dragon of the North Sea,
no Edge of the World...
That's what YOU say.
(aside to his Grandad)
What's the matter with them?
Just say something cheerful.
(he can't think of
Well... CHEERS everybody!
Erik smiles broadly and waves. The entire village stares
back at him with tears in their eyes, and biting their lips.
Suddenly one mother can't hold it back any more.
Another mother rushes out and grabs Ivar the Boneless.
My son! I don't want you to go!
I don't want to go, either...
Oh gods! Please, everybody! Keep
calm! It's not certain ALL of us are
going to die... and in any case we
may not die HIDEOUS deaths...
More renewed sobbing. Grandad's eyes go heavenwards.
I think we should go...
(he turns for a last
Farewell... for the last time... may
the gods prevent...
No, don't say anything else!
Suddenly Keitel Blacksmith steps forward. His muscles ripple.
His handsome face radiates heroism and manliness.
They stop and turn.
You can't go without me. Who will
repair your swords and mend your
Renewed sobs from the women.
Oh, no! Ah, lackaday! Not HIM too!
What's the matter now?
If Keitel Blacksmith goes with you...
We'll have no one to do the things
he did for us.
THORKATLA THE INDISCRETE
Or sharpen our knives and make our
An awkward silence. The others all turn on her and frown --
a bit of shin-kicking goes on. It's clear that Keitel is
popular amongst the womenfolk. Erik doesn't notice.
You will have Keitel's assistant,
Loki, to do all that.
What's wrong with Loki? He's become
very good at blacksmithing.
He's so small and...
The others all shush her up. More shin-kicking.
Oh, yes... we've got Loki... That's
Leading his pony across a bleak landscape. He eventually
stops and looks ahead. There stands a gibbet with two corpses
dangling from it. He is nearing his destination.
CUT BACK TO:
ERIK AND HIS MEN
Getting into Golden Dragon.
Erik notices Thorfinn and Sven quarrelling over Leif the
Hey, you two! What's going on?
I was sitting there.
No, you weren't.
Leif's sitting here. I need a bit of
Look, I bagged it last week.
It doesn't matter WHERE you sit!
Yes it does! We could be at sea for
Well, what difference does it make
where you're SITTING?
I don't want to have to sit next to
Snorri all that time.
Sven nods towards Snorri the Miserable -- an Eeyore of a
Viking if ever there were one.
Thank you VERY much indeed.
Now stop it!
It's SO nice to feel wanted.
Leif, you sit there. Even, you sit
there. Harald, you'd better sit over
Trust me to get the missionary.
Suddenly Erik notices Sven's father climbing aboard.
What are YOU doing here?
You may need a real Berserk.
I AM one, Dad!
We haven't got a spare place.
He can have my place. I don't want
to go anyway.
Well, you ARE!
Bjorn's not. He could have Bjorn's
What's the matter with Bjorn?
Nothing... Halfdan the Black chopped
his hand off last night.
He was lucky...
(to Sven's dad)
You can't have Sven's father sitting
next to Sven. They'll argue the whole
You'd better sit there.
(to Sven's dad)
You there, and Ornulf there.
Now you've got all the big ones on
Erik looks around. It is true that all the tall burly ones
are on one side.
All right, you go there. You here...
Sven's dad and Ornulf swap places.
Ohh! I wanted to sit next to Leif.
Shut up. You there. You there and
Ivar and Ornulf swap places. Erik surveys this re-arrangement.
Now you've got all the ones with
beards on one side and all the
moustaches on the other.
This is true. Erik thinks some moments and then:
It doesn't matter.
They start to haul the sail up. Ropes are released. The boat
rocks. Suddenly a voice cuts through the crowd. It is Erik's
Wait! Wait! Wait!
What is it?
(he is clearly a little
She tries to hand Erik what looks unmistakably like a pillow.
Erik is dumbfounded.
Your father always made sure he could
rest his head at night.
Erik is mortified. The others snigger, though not without
some sympathy for Erik. They've ALL been embarrassed by their
mums at one time or another.
I can't take THAT on a voyage!
It was your father's!
Erik will find it hard to refuse now. But he hesitates.
It was the pillow HE took with him.
He said it once saved his life.
Erik reluctantly takes the precious object. His mother kisses
him. Everyone has fallen silent now. The relatives stand
helpless on the shore as Golden Dragon starts to drift away
from them. The Vikings sit in their places, hands on the
oars looking back at their loved ones. Erik stands at the
prow of Golden Dragon. For a moment he thinks he sees the
girl he killed, standing, white in death, the spear-wound
still fresh. Erik raises his hand in a half-goodbye. We cut
back to the loved ones, now the girl is no longer there.
They too half-raise their hands. Erik suddenly turns and
gives a shout:
The oars go up and then into the water, and GOLDEN DRAGON
commences her voyage.
CUT BACK TO:
GOLDEN DRAGON AT SEA
Snorri is feeling queasy and gazing gloomily at the receding
coastline of Norway. Thangbrand is sitting near him and
feeling equally queasy.
Have a good look... that's the last
we'll see of old Norway.
Snorri is desperately trying to control his insides.
Goodbye home... goodbye family...
goodbye loved ones...
(he starts to throw
Oh! Shut up.
Harald Missionary puts his arm around Snorri.
You know, my son, our lord said...
Quite... MY lord... said: "The Prayer
of Faith shall have the sick."
I hope the Dragon of the North Sea
gets YOU AND your lord.
Harald Missionary gives him a condescending smile and a weary
shake of the head. He knows the Dragon of the North Sea does
Darkness and ignorance...
Meanwhile Ivar the Boneless and Sven the Berserk are both
suffering from the effects of the sea.
(keeping a wave of
It's not so bad when you're rowing.
Thorfinn gobs onto the whetstone with which he is sharpening
his axe. Sven can control himself no longer. He rushes for
SVEN THE BERSERK
I want to die.
This sets off Ivar.
IVAR THE BONELESS
He leaps up and pukes over the side. Mass puking breaks out
all over the boat.
Keitel Blacksmith looks around at his preoccupied shipmates,
and it slowly dawns upon him that this might be the moment
to try a little sabotage.
He goes to the ship's lodestone, which is hanging from the
mast. Keitel glances around. No one is looking, but this
sort of covert behavior goes against his normally sunny and
The Blacksmith's Code...
He steels himself, takes down the lodestone, snaps out the
piece of metal in the base and throws it over the side. Keitel
hangs it up again on the mast.
Are you all right?
No, I'm not.
You don't need to feel bad about
being sea-sick, you know.
How can you help feeling bad when
I mean many of the greatest sailors
I know. I know.
Olaf Tryggvason used to throw up on
every single voyage... the whole
time... non-stop... puke... puke...
Look! I don't feel BAD about it. I
just feel ILL.
Thorfinn pauses and waits for a wave of nausea to creep up
He used to puke in his sleep.
He throws up.
Meanwhile Erik is in the stern, gazing out behind them.
Thorfinn... look over there.
Thorfinn leaves Ivar and joins Erik.
On the horizon a sinister sail is following them. Thorfinn
grins with evil pleasure. He scents a fight.
Erik turns to the crew.
Break out the oars!
Thorfinn's smile disappears and he spins round to confront
What are you talking about?
(to his reluctant
Come on, move it!
Most of the men are being sea-sick.
We've only just started cooking lunch.
The crew glance at Mord Fiddle and then throw up again.
Reluctantly the crew take up their rowing positions. Thorfinn
buttonholes Erik (except of course that he doesn't have any
It's Halfdan the Black!
I know. Snorri! Get your oar out!
Snorri is sitting in position but without his oar. Keitel
has meanwhile joined them. He, too, stares at the horizon.
He is a little puzzled by this turn of events. Loki has said
nothing about Halfdan coming after them.
Do you suppose he wants to stop us
waking the Gods?
Erik looks at Keitel with a certain amount of contempt. Keitel
is not renowned even amongst these Vikings for his brain-
What do you think?
But how could he know... unless...
Keitel stops in mid-sentence as he realizes it must be Loki's
So are you going to run away from
Erik turns to Thorfinn.
Row, Thorfinn Skull-Splitter.
And you, Keitel Blacksmith.
Keitel shrugs and turns to take up his rowing position. He
is still a little confused by this turn of events. Erik
I gave an order. Or didn't you hear?
There is something about Erik's manner that carries an
authority that Thorfinn cannot argue with.
Come on, Ivar.
Erik manhandles Ivar over to his drum and thrusts his
drumsticks into his hands.
Halfdan's ship is twice the size of Erik's and, as Erik is
only too well aware, consequently travels at twice the speed.
There is no real chance of them escaping, unless... Erik
suddenly catches sight of a thick bank of mist in the
distance, and steers his ship towards it.
(still feeling ill)
I want to die...
catching sight of
Halfdan's ship behind
No, I don't!
Row! Row! Row!
Ivar tries to get into the new rhythm, but has a bit of
difficult. As Halfdan's ship gains on them inexorably, GOLDEN
DRAGON glides into the sea mist. There is a tremendous roll
of thunder very close. All the Vikings look scared. Erik,
Row! Row! Row!
He doubles the speed. The drum beats faster.
(shouts out angrily)
We can't keep this up!
Erik grins and then leans on the steering oar. Golden Dragon
curves around to its left. Then Erik lays his hand on Ivar's
drum and silences it.
The Vikings ship their oars and sit there in the mist
listening to beating of Halfdan's drum getting closer and
At the final moment, however, Halfdan swings his ship in the
opposite direction from Erik's and the sound of his drum
disappears into the mist. Erik's men breathe a sigh of
relief... even Keitel Blacksmith...
SOME TIME LATER
Golden Dragon is still drifting in the mist. Erik has his
fish-lodestone and is trying the direction, but the lodestone
is just swinging round uselessly. After trying a few times,
Erik gives up and throws the lodestone away into the boat.
The men peer into the thick mist; they are lost. Suddenly
Erik sees something ahead.
The Gates of the World...
Golden Dragon silently guides between two weird islands.
We have passed through the Gates of
(he looks around at
Now we are in the Unknown...
Golden Dragon drifts on and the mist gets thicker. There is
a crash of thunder. Then a series of flashes lights up the
mist around them. The Vikings are uneasy, sensing a storm
brewing. Suddenly Erik points above them. The others look up
too. They all gasp.
(hardly daring to
So THAT is what the sun looks like!
Above them hangs a luminous yellow globe, its light just
breaking through the mist.
(to each other)
The sun! It's the sun! Look!
I never though I should live to see
the sun again.
The Vikings all gaze up above them in awe. Harald looks from
one to the other and then tries to follow their eyelines. He
clearly can't see it. Magic music fills the air. Suddenly
the "sun" swoops off to one side and starts swaying from one
side to another.
Should the sun do that?
What are you looking at?
The Vikings scream and flatten themselves against the sides
of the boat, as the "sun" suddenly lurches down on them out
of the sky, revealing for the first time that it is NOT the
sun at all but a strange monster with a long neck that
disappears off into the mist and a glowing globe for a head,
and huge chomping jaws. The Vikings are, understandably,
It's not the sun! It's not the sun!
What is it?
It's the Dragon of the North Sea!
Ah! THAT'S why I can't see it.
As the Dragon of the North Sea rises up again, however, its
jaw apparently drops off and falls to the deck, and lands on
Keitel nervously picks it up and holds it up for everyone to
see. It is a strand of sea-weed. The Vikings are non-plussed.
They look back at their now jawless monster. Harald Missionary
picks up the sea-weed.
Some dragon! Ooh!
He tosses it back amongst his terrifies companions. Suddenly
there is an incredibly loud clap of thunder and flames shoot
out of the mist.
As... unbelievably... a huge monstrous visage looms out of
the mist... It is a creature from the nethermost depths of
the ocean... and the incandescent globe is no more than a
sprouting on the end of its nose! More fire shoots out from
its nostrils and sends all the Vikings (and even Harald
Missionary) diving for the deck. Then the monstrous head
disappears back into the mist as quickly as it came, taking
its light with it...
The Vikings are paralyzed with fear for one brief moment.
They all scramble for the oars in a determined hysteria.
Ivar the drummer, in his panic, has set a ridiculously fast
rate and nobody can keep up with it.
Slower! Nobody can row at that speed!
What's all the panic about?
(in a panic, shouting
back over his shoulder)
Harald gives a patronizing smile.
Children afraid of the dark...
Suddenly there is another roar, and flames shoot out of the
mist and across the deck of Golden Dragon. One man, Ornolf
Fishdriver, who hasn't had much to say so far, is set on
fire. Another, Bjarni Jerusalem-Farer, who has and will have
even less to say then Ornolf Fishdriver, leaps out of the
way of the flames and falls over the side.
Man over board!
Thorfinn starts trying to fish him out. Ivar has started to
panic and is beating the drum too fast.
Slower! In... Out...
(his eyes showing
We're being attacked! KILL! Kill!
Not now, Sven...
I must KILL! Kill!
It's no good going berserk against a
Sven's dad slaps him around the face. There is another roar
from the monster. Erik turns to Ivar.
Make your mind up.
Suddenly the Dragon's head appears out of the mists above
them once again. There is panic amongst the Vikings as some
start to row faster than others. Screams.
Keep up the strike!
The Dragon's jaws open. Flame licks out, and down the center
of the vessel. There are screams as the Vikings leap out of
the way. Sven goes berserk again.
The Dragon's eyes dilate and its jaws open. The men throw
themselves to the deck as if expecting more fire. But instead
the creature's fangs crash into the wood of the stern of
Erik looks around at his terror-stricken crew. He realizes
this is an important moment. It is up to him to save the
situation. Suddenly an idea occurs to him, as he catches
sight of the pillow that his mother gave him.
Erik dashes to his sea-chest under the mast and pulls out
Erik! Row! What are you doing?
(holding up the pillow)
It saved my father!
Erik starts to shin up the mast.
Sven's dad is desperately holding Sven back.
HOLD it! HOLD it in!
DEATH TO DRAGONS!
Has anyone told him we've got a dragon
eating our boat?
Erik has reached the top of the mast and is now right up
with the incandescent globe on the end of the long stalk
that grows onto the monster's nose. He grabs hold of it and
swings across onto the monster's nose. At his moment Sven
breaks free of his dad and throws himself onto one of the
He bangs his head against the monstrous denture. Sven's dad
looks heavenward in despair.
Who is offering his bible to the petrifies Vikings in the
It's at time like this that you'll
find this book MOST useful, you
Keitel takes the bible from him and hits him over the head
Row! You idiot!
The monster's eyes dilate wildly as they try to focus on the
tiny figure of Erik on its snout. Erik shoves the pillow up
one of the Dragon's nostrils. Snorri watches Erik
incredulously. He shakes his head.
His father went crazy too... Used to
take forty winks in the middle of a
Thorfinn frowns -- he has a glimmering of an idea of what
Erik is doing. Erik now plunges his sword through the pillow
in the Dragon's nostril, and feathers immediately fly into
Now... take a deep breath.
The Dragon goes cross-eyed, trying to see what's going on on
Go on! Breathe in, you cod-brain!
Meanwhile the Dragon's tongue suddenly licks out around its
tooth. Sven instantly slices through it with his sword. The
bright blood spurts, like bursting a sausage. The Dragon
gives an agonized roar and a sharp intake of breath. The
feathers that have leaked out from the pillow are instantly
sucked inside and the whole pillow disappears right up the
For a moment everyone holds their breath. The Dragon's eye
dilate wildly. Then it wrinkles its snout. Then it starts
what is unmistakably a sneeze.
THE DRAGON OF THE NORTH SEA
Ah... ah... ah...
THE DRAGON OF THE NORTH SEA
Ah... ah... ah...
Erik leaps back across the mast.
THE DRAGON OF THE NORTH SEA
A hurricane of wind and feathers blasts out of the Dragon's
nostrils and hits all the Vikings at once. Everyone is
disgusted by the Dragon's breath.
Urgh! What's it been eating?
But the blast has already catapulted the boat into the sky,
and it hurtles through the clouds. leaving the Dragon of the
North Sea far behind. They all look up at Erik and cheer.
Shot of Erik. He doesn't look too happy.
Neither does Ivar the Boneless, because he too has just
noticed that they are now flying and the ocean is several
thousand feet below them. Ivar screams. The other all rush
to the side to look too.
No! No! Get back!
Unfortunately they all rush to the same side and the boat
tips over with far more instability than when it is in the
water. Leif and Thangbrand are catapulted down into the sea.
We watch them descend into tiny dots and tiny unheard splashes
Who was that?
Leif the Lucky.
Others are almost falling out. There is renewed panic.
Poor Erik is still up the mast but has been dislodged and is
now hanging on by his hands, dangling over the open sea.
Some of the men -- Thorfinn and Sven the Berserk amongst
them -- are hauling themselves up the almost vertical slope
of the deck, trying to redress the balance. Meanwhile Keitel
Blacksmith is dangling by one hand.
I can't hold on! I can't hold on!
Sven worms his way along the edge -- at great peril to himself --
and grabs Keitel's wrist just as his fingers slip.
Keitel looks up in Sven's eyes. He is totally at Sven's mercy.
What thoughts are going through his mind? How is he going to
betray Sven in future if he is rescued? Guilt suddenly
Let me go, Sven.
What are you talking about?
I'm not worth risking your life for.
I've got you, Keitel Blacksmith. If
you go... I go too...
For your own sake... For the others...
The boat begins to right itself just as Erik finally can't
hold on any more, and he plummets, straight into the ship,
and through the bottom up to his waist. His legs dangle.
At the same moment the prow of the boat tips and suddenly
they are plummeting down towards the ocean. They hit the
water with an almighty splash. Erik is thrown clear of the
hull by the force of the water now cascading up through the
hole he has made.
First we're flying -- now we're
Well, come on!
He whisks off his helmet and starts bailing. All follow suit.
SOME TIME LATER
The Vikings are still bailing out, but the water is up to
IVAR THE BONELESS
Who are we fooling? It's hopeless!
Ivar flings down the helmet with which he's been bailing.
The others look at each other. They are reconciled to the
fact that they are going to drown.
Let's sing something!
Anyone know any good drowning songs?
The suggestion falls flat.
Listen! Maybe we won't get to Hy-
Brasil! Maybe we won't find the Horn
Resounding... but at least we've
tried... and at least we shall have
died like men.
(raising his sword)
Erik's right! We'll all meet in
I don't want to die!
Isn't there ANYBODY who'd like to be
christened before we go down?
Silence. A distinct lack of enthusiasm.
It can't do you any HARM...
What do we have to do?
Nothing... I just immerse you in
THORFINN AND OTHERS
The ship creaks and starts to go under. Erik picks his up
his sword. The others follow suit.
Don't let me drown, Thorfinn!
Water starts to pour over the sides of the boat. Erik and
Thorfinn raise their swords to each other.
Till we meet in Valhalla.
They all prepare to run each other through. The boat sinks
IVAR THE BONELESS
I'm too young! Oh Odin! Not me! Please
not me! Perhaps I'd rather drown...
I do WISH you'd let me convert you.
Then Erik pauses in his attempt to kill Thorfinn and looks
around. The ship has sunk, but the prow and the stern posts
are still sticking up out of the water, and the Vikings
themselves are only up to their chests.
How deep IS the ocean?
Very deep... usually...
The realization gradually dawns on the Vikings that they're
not going to sink any more.
Wait! Nobody kill anybody!
THE SUN SHINING DOWN FROM A BLUE SKY
The Vikings have fallen asleep where we last saw them -- up
to their necks in water. Gradually the warmth of the sun
coaxes them awake -- Thorfinn is the first to look up and
see the brilliant shining orb in the sky.
What is it?
IVAR THE BONELESS
(he panics and turns)
It's the Dragon again!
No.. no, it isn't...
Ivar has turned and is staring at something else.
Look, the sky is blue...
The sun! That's it!
Ivar, meanwhile, is recovering from the amazement that has
immobilized him. He taps Erik on the shoulder. Erik turns
and he, too, gasps.
They all turn to see they are standing in the shallow waters
of a natural harbor. Above nestle the white walls of a
beautiful city set in a green and pleasant land.
The Vikings wade ashore, enchanted by the paradise they see
before them. All at once Thorfinn spies something. He draws
his sword and they all approach with caution to find that
under a weeping willow tree lies the most beautiful girl.
She is raven-haired, scantily dressed and fast asleep. The
Vikings approach her with trepidation, their swords and axes
drawn. They glance around uneasily.
She's got no clothes on!
Get her weapons.
Sven kneels quietly beside the girl. She stirs. Sven freezes.
The others look around fearfully.
She hasn't got any.
She MUST have a knife or something...
But they look. She hasn't.
What kind of place IS this?
IVAR THE BONELES
P... p... perhaps they've got weapons
we haven't even dreamed of...
Suddenly the girl stirs again in her sleep. The Vikings
retreat several paces and grip their weapons, and glance
around as if expecting an ambush.
Let's hack her to pieces.
Well, what else do we do?
How about making friends?
What's wrong with making friends?
You don't go through all the hardships
of an ocean voyage to make "friends".
We can make "friends" at home...
This conversation has woken the girl, Aud.
The Vikings react with terror, take a step back and raise
their swords and axes.
WHAT did you say?
I said welcome.
Well, of course. We always welcome
The Vikings look at each other and at their swords. They
don't think they look that much like friends themselves.
How d'you KNOW we're "friends"?
Well, EVERYONE is friends here on Hy-
Is THIS Hy-Brasil?
Well, of course.
The Vikings erupt into an impromptu dance of joy, hugging
each other and waving their swords in the air.
Please! Please! What are those?
What are what?
Those things in your hands.
These? What are THESE? They're swords.
Aud instantly recoils with terror.
Oh no! NO! Put them down! PUT THEM
The Vikings gradually cease their mock battles and turn to
look at Aud with incredulity.
What's the matter?
PLEASE! You don't know what you're
Put them down!
PLEASE make them put them down.
But surely you know...?
Er... n... no...
CLOSEUP OF KING ARNULF
The wonderful blessing under which
we live here on Hy-Brasil!
The king beams. The Vikings shift uneasily. They look out of
place and extremely scruffy in the midst of the scantily
dressed courtiers of Hy-Brasil. Aud sits beside her father
No... we don't...
The Gods decreed that if ever a sword
spills human blood upon these shores,
the whole of Hy-Brasil will sink
beneath the waves.
King Arnulf beams rapturously at the Vikings, expecting them
to be overjoyed. Instead they are horrified.
You mean if just ONE PERSON gets
(he thinks: isn't it
The Vikings look at each other,
feeling they haven't quite understood.
You mean... you can't kill ANYBODY?
Right! Isn't it wonderful?
The Vikings are non-plussed.
What? Not being able to kill anybody?
Well, of course.
(explaining the obvious)
Well... for a start... er... there's
Well, OBVIOUSLY there's no killing.
Well... isn't it great?
But how d'you take revenge?
How do you punish people?
How do you DEFEND yourselves?
(getting a little
We don't have to. We're all terribly
nice to each other. Aren't we?
Aud catches Erik's eye and gives him a dangerously slow wink.
A pause of disbelief from the Vikings.
ALL the time?
Well, of course! We HAVE to be.
He turns and conducts the courtiers, who chant in unison:
"Being nice to each other is what
it's all about."
(rising as if to sing)
You see? We're terribly nice to each
other We're friendly bold and free.
We never say anything nasty 'Cause
we dare not...
They hold the note while King Arnulf looks anxiously at the
Would you like us to sing to you?
That's very kind of you, but we're
in rather a hurry... We're...
King Arnulf claps and the court stop singing.
What's the matter, don't you WANT to
hear our singing?
Oh... well, yes, of course; it's
just we're looking for the Horn
Resounding and --
You don't think our singing's going
to be good enough for you?
Oh, no no no! It's just the Horn
A lot of people like our singing.
I'm sure it's lovely.
But you don't want to hear it.
(he looks at the others)
We'd love to hear it. Wouldn't we?
Well, you'll have to ask us REALLY
(realizing he has to
Er... well... we... we... would be
TERRIBLY grateful if you... all...
would sing for us.
You're just saying that.
Well, of course he is!
They restrain Sven.
Of course we're not; we'd genuinely
like to hear you sing.
And you're not just saying it because
you think we want you to?
Erik swallows hard.
(he bites the lie)
Right! Summon the musicians! We'll
do the one that goes "TUM-TUM-TUM-
It isn't the one we're BEST at.
Couldn't we do the one that goes "TI-
The rest of the court look hopeful.
Not when we've got guests.
VOICE FROM COURT
How about the one that goes "TI-TUM-
Don't be silly.
That was a stupid suggestion.
Sorry! I just thought they might
like to hear something that we can
Yes! At least we know that one.
YET ANOTHER VOICE
Nobody knows the "TUM-TUM-TUM-TUM-TI-
REST OF COURT
ODD MAN OUT
REST OF COURT
It's too difficult!
All right. We'll do the one that
TUM". Ah! The musicians!
The musicians are huge, unshaven, have broken noses and
tattoos, and are covered in black oil -- like mechanics.
Their instruments are like heavy industrial machinery, pushed
in large vats of black oil that drip all over the show.
Right... Oh dear...
(he glances across at
I'm sure you're not going to like
Erik and the others smile reassuringly.
There is a lot of coughing. The King raises his baton and
then brings it down, humming to himself as he does so. There
is a most awful din; caterwauling, crashing and banging,
The Vikings look at each other, trying to pick out some tune,
but it's impossible. Ivar the Boneless can't stop himself
bursting out into giggles and this eventually spreads to the
other Vikings. King Arnulf notices and bangs the throne for
Gradually the din stops. King Arnulf sinks down in despair.
We're just not a very musical
No, no... It was very... er, nice.
Now I want you to be ABSOLUTELY,
totally, genuinely honest with me.
Did you really, truly, honestly like
Erik thinks for some moments and then decides to make a clean
breast of it.
They didn't like it! Oh God! I want
The whole court looks as if it's about to commit mass HARA-
KIRI, while the musicians look rather dangerous. Erik takes
the moment to get down to business.
Your Majesty! We come from a world
where there IS no music. Where men
live and die by the axe and by the
Well, how d'you think I feel?
The Gods are asleep, King Arnulf.
YOU try to be nice to people, when
they're rude about your singing...
Erik feels he is making a mess of all this diplomacy.
We must find the Horn Resounding!
The King glares at Erik.
Is it HERE in Hy-Brasil?
King Arnulf thinks for a moment and then speaks.
I'll tell you what...
King Arnulf hesitates -- he bites his lip and then takes the
We'll do the one that goes "TUM-TUM-
TUM-TUM-TI-TUM-TUM". Perhaps you'll
like that better.
Erik gives up. A lot of throat clearing. Aud, the King's
daughter, gives Erik another dangerously slow wink. The
terrible "music" starts up, shattering the calm of the
THE GOLDEN DRAGON
Now afloat once more, riding at anchor in the bay. Ivar is
standing on guard in it. Suddenly he sees something that
makes him gabe in horror. We don't find out what it is,
however, because we immediately
He is deeply in love. He is also in bed with the King's nubile
Have you ever felt like this about
What... you mean "got into bed with"
No, of course not, silly -- I mean
FELT like this about them?
You mean... you HAVE got into bed
with somebody else?
No, I mean have you ever felt that
for the first time in your life you'd
met somebody you could believe in
with your whole heart... someone
whose goals suddenly seem to be YOUR
goals... whose dreams seem to be
HAVE you ever been to bed with anyone
What does that matter? But you've...
you've... FELT like this before...
It was different...
(just for a moment it
is Helga speaking)
What was she like?
Oh... oh, I didn't know her very
But you LOVED her all the same...
We never went to bed together.
Why do you go on about that? What
does it matter?
You've been to bed with somebody
else, haven't you?
I've never LOVED anybody!
I've never been to bed with anybody!
Suddenly there is a banging on he door.
KING ARNULF (V.O.)
Open up! I know you're in there!
Ah! It's my father!
KING ARNULF (V.O.)
Open up! I know you're in there!
Suddenly the note from Ivar's horn rings out across from the
bay. Erik rushes to the window and looks out to see what
Ivar saw previously: a black ship approaching on the horizon.
Oh, no! Halfdan!
There is more banging on the bedroom door.
KING ARNULF (V.O.)
Aud! You've got someone in there
again, haven't you?
Erik gives her a sharp look.
Quick! Throw this over you!
She throws a shabby bit of cloth over Erik and at that moment
the door bursts open, and King Arnulf enters.
Right! Where is he?
Who? Who? Whoever you've got in here
There IS no one.
The King starts prowling round the chamber. Erik stands there,
naked and petrified, with the cloak hanging over his head,
just where it landed.
I can SMELL one of those strangers...
That's who it is, isn't it?
Aud keeps mum.
This is the fifth one this week.
Before he can stop himself, Erik blurts out:
Aud motions him to be quiet, but it's too late. The King
spins round to see who she is signaling to. The King appears
to be looking straight at Erik. Erik can hardly bear the
Well... where is he?
There's nobody here, Father. Look
King Arnulf looks around the chamber carefully. He looks
straight through Erik as if he weren't there. Suddenly the
King strides over to Erik and Erik instinctively cowers out
of the way. The King walks straight over to a very small
cupboard no more than a foot high, flings the door of it
open, and starts throwing clothes around the room.
He wouldn't be a midget, Father!
The King turns on her.
Ah! So you admit there IS someone!
You're losing your temper!
Of course I'm not. I never lose my
Ivar's horn sounds again. A shadow passes over King Arnulf's
Oh dear... more visitors!
He strides to the window and sees Halfdan's ship. As he does
so, Erik has to leap out of the way, inadvertently knocking
a chest. The King spins round and addresses the chest.
Come out... come out like a man... I
know you're in there...
King Arnulf flings the chest open, revealing nothing but
clothes. He is baffled. He reluctantly starts to leave.
It's all in your own mind, Father...
It's YOU who imagine that I'm always
up here with some man or other....
I don't know how you do it, Aud... I
sometimes think you've got some of
your mother's magic...
He suddenly spies a small trinket-box and looks in that. But
he doesn't find any strange man in it.
There is no magic, Father... My mother
had no magic...
She did, I tell you! She could blind
me as easily as the night the day.
It's your fantasy...
But one day I'll catch you... Like I
He leaves. Aud closes the door. Erik throws the cloak off
and starts getting dressed.
The Cloak Invisible. It was my
mother's parting gift.
"The fifth one this week"!
Oh, for goodness' sake!
And I thought you said it was
Aud runs to his side and puts her arms around him.
That's just what I was trying to
tell you. You ARE...
Five this week; how many the week
You're as bad as my father.
And the week before that?
(she is really sincere)
I want to help you get to Asgaard.
Erik is torn. He doesn't know whether to believe her or not.
Ivar's horn sounds for a third time. Erik races to the window.
He looks out. Halfdan's ship is even closer.
We mustn't let him land!
Halfdan the Black.
But Erik is off out of the door.
No. Wait! My father will be --
There is a thump and a yell as Erik is set upon by the King's
I might have known it was you!
(pinning Erik's arms
I'm not hurting you, am I?
You WILL tell us if we hurt you?
They start to march Erik through the palace.
Let me go!
They're not supposed to hurt you.
You've got to let me go!
Oh no! We can hold onto you -- just
so long we don't squeeze too hard or
In the distance we hear the horn again.
Halfdan the Black's here!
They have reached a cell. The musicians starts to chain Erik
It's all part of our safety
regulations. You see if someone were
to get hurt they might get angry and
They'll be more than "hurt" if Halfdan
the Black lands! Ow!
Ooh! I'm terribly sorry.
Who is Halfdan the Black?
He's trying to stop us waking the
Because that's how he makes his money,
by war and plunder!
Don't talk nonsense.
He wants to kill US!
Not when we explain about the Great
You don't know Halfdan the Black.
I know that the Great Blessing has
kept the peace for a thousand years,
and will keep it for the next
The horn sounds again. Erik is about to argue this point
when Thorfinn suddenly bursts in.
We're not hurting him!
Just let me go!
Halfdan the Black's here!
(to the King)
He wants to KILL us.
They both look at King Arnulf. The King thinks.
You don't want him to kill us ON Hy-
Brasil! Do you?
The King thinks some more. The horn sounds once more.
THE GOLDEN DRAGON
Erik and the Vikings are scrambling into their war gear.
They glance nervously over to where Halfdan the Black's ship
is riding on the waves.
I feel strange.
Erik looks at Thorfinn, shocked.
IVAR THE BONELESS
(his throat dry)
Sort of wobbly and excited?
But Thorfinn doesn't know the meaning
Is it sort of... like a sinking
feeling in your stomach?
But. You're not even afraid of DEATH,
I know. I know.
I've heard stories of a magic that
strikes fear into the heart so you
Yes... I can feel it.
IVAR THE BONELESS
I always feel like this!
Suddenly Halfdan's ship rises up out of the water, and
revealing the secret of its hidden power. Under the water-
line is another line of oars! The Vikings are dumbfounded.
Ivar drops trembling to his knees. The rest go white. Thorfinn
draws his sword. Erik realizes his men are rapidly talking
themselves into a blue funk.
It's not magic! It's just a trick!
(turning on him angrily)
Don't you FEEL it?
Erik looks around at his paralyzed crew. He realizes he is
the only one who can save the situation.
Very well! It they're using magic --
we'll use magic of our own!
He leaps out of Golden Dragon and races up to the shore
towards the city of Hy-Brasil.
Erik races into the Forum and gazes up at the high walls of
the Palace. Without a thought he produces two daggers and
plunges them into the stonework. Then he hauls himself up
the sheer cliff of wall up to Aud's bedchamber fist over
fist. It is, indeed, a prodigious feat. He arrives at Aud's
window exhausted. Aud, who has appeared at the window, looks
at him curiously.
Why didn't you come up by the stairs?
Erik looks around and notices for the first time the
magnificent flights of stairs leading up to the top of Aud's
Just give me a hand.
I mean, you could have killed
Erik clambers into Aud's room.
Where's the Cloak Invisible?
Erik looks around and is suddenly suspicious.
I can't see it!
Have you got another man in here?
Erik starts feeling the air as if expecting to find an
It's in the chest.
Erik races over and grabs the cloak.
I'll bring it back.
Erik. You don't understand.
No. It's YOU who doesn't understand,
Aud. Halfdan has come to kill and
destroy. We brought him here. We
must stop him.
(pointing at the cloak)
But you don't realize....
Erik leaps out of the window. For a moment Aud is surprised
and then alarmed as she realizes he's jumped out of the
window, which is some forty feet off the ground.
She rushes to the window in time to see Erik parachuting
down, holding the four corners of the cloak. Erik lands safely
and waves with the cloak.
And thanks for the Cloak Invisible!
No! WAIT! ERIK! The Cloak! The Cloak
Invisible! It only seems to work on
But Erik cannot hear her. He is already racing back to his
BACK ON THE GOLDEN DRAGON
Thorfinn is taking "Being Scared" lessons from Ivar the
And a sort of slightly sick feeling?
That's it! AND you keep wanting to
go to the lavatory.
Oh, yes! I hadn't noticed that!
Oh, shut up, you two. You're making
us ALL nervous.
Erik leaps into Golden Dragon brandishing the Cloak Invisible.
So Halfdan the Black's using magic,
is he? Well, I have a magic to match
(he holds up the Cloak
What is it?
A magic dishcloth.
To the oars!
D'you think I've got time to go behind
Ivar starts to drum and the Vikings begin to row. Golden
Dragon heads out of the harbor.
HALFDAN THE BLACK
flanked by his advisers, Gisli Oddsson and Eilif the Mongul.
He gives a nod and Eilif bangs his staff of office on the
deck, as a signal for the galley slaves to speed up. Down in
the galley, the slave master (a diminutive Japanese) stalks
down the decks lashing the sweat-streaked galley slaves and
cursing them in incomprehensive Japanese.
Fortunately (or perhaps unfortunately) a translation appears
Row! You incomprehensible, horizontal-
eyed, Western trouser-wearers! Eurgh!
You all look the same to me! How I
despise your lack of subtlety and
your joined-up writing! You, who
have never committed ritual suicide
in your lives!
(whispering to his
You know, I don't think it would be
so bad, if we knew what he was
SILENCE! Unceremonious rice-pudding
eaters! How I abominate your milk-
drinking and your lack of ancestor-
worship and your failure to eat your
lunch out of little boxes!
Meanwhile the Vikings are growing increasingly uneasy as
they row towards Halfdan.
What "magic" have you brought, Erik?
At this point, back on the Black Ship, Halfdan gives another
nod and Eilif raps out yet another command with his staff.
This time the prow of the Black Ship opens up like a pair of
jaws. The Vikings see it and panic.
IVAR THE BONELESS
I've done it!
(he has too!)
Halfdan nods again and another order is rapped out. This
time a harpoon is fired from the prow. It thuds into GOLDEN
DRAGON and two of Halfdan's dog-soldiers start to winch the
line in. The two ships are hauled closer and closer.
The Vikings panic even more. Erik holds up the Cloak Invisible
and grins round at his men, knowing he is going to surprise
Here! Here is the magic from the
Erik's men watch, half skeptical and half hopeful. Erik enjoys
the moment of suspense. The he throws the Cloak Invisible
over his head and shoulders and grins round at his men
triumphantly, imagining he has vanished from their sight.
There! I have become the wind!
The Vikings look at him, rather puzzled. Only Harald seems
to be impressed.
How did he do that?
Vanish into thin air?
Well, where is he then?
Harald looks around. He is the only one who can't see Erik.
At this point Halfdan's ship suddenly bites into the side of
Golden Dragon. Erik leaps onto the side of Golden Dragon and
swings across onto Halfdan's ship. The Vikings react to the
horror of Halfdan's ship biting into Golden Dragon and to
Erik's blithe leap onto the enemy boat. Erik lands on the
deck of Halfdan's ship, and grins at the ferocious skull-
Ooh! Scary! Scary! Don't we look
Two dog-soldiers look at each other, totally non-plussed.
Erik grimaces at Halfdan's men, and does a little pirouette
to show them all that he's invisible from every angle.
You can't see me! But I can see you!
He breaks into a little dance. Halfdan glares at his advisers.
What's going on?
Well, why isn't he scared of us?
Erik, meanwhile approaches one of the dog-soldiers and makes
silly faces at him.
The dog-soldier topples overboard. The galley slaves watch
another dog-soldier fall into the hold amongst them and lie
there stunned. His sword falls onto the deck between the
slaves. One of the slaves throws down his oar, and picks up
the dog-soldier's sword. The slave-master suddenly appears.
Once again he speaks immaculate Japanese.
Hey! What's going on? Your big-
breasted women give me no pleasure
with their warmed-up fish and...
The slave-master strides down the ship to flay the offending
slave, but another slave trips him up and in a twinkling of
an eye four others have leapt on the slave-master (despite
their chains) and are extracting his keys.
What's the matter? Haven't you seen
anyone fight before?
They're usually too scared of us.
Erik, still thinking he's invisible, is running amongst the
dog-soldiers, having fun. He runs one dog-soldier through
and kicks another overboard, then he runs past a few more,
right up to Halfdan himself. He whisks the Cloak Invisible
off his head for an instant.
Here I am!
Then he turns and is off. Halfdan turns to his aides.
BACK ON THE GOLDEN DRAGON
The Vikings' disbelief has turned to admiration.
There! THAT'S a true Berserk.
I'm just building up to it, Dad.
Sven starts banging his head on the side of the boat.
He's gone batty!
No! The fear's gone!
Halfdan grabs a sword off one of his dead dog-soldiers and
thrusts it into the unwilling hands of his military adviser,
Fight, damn you! Fight!
CUT BACK TO:
THE GOLDEN DRAGON
Now Sven leaps across onto Halfdan's ship followed by Ivar,
yelling. Snorri looks back at Keitel.
Well! Come on!
Keitel is thinking: "Maybe I should let Halfdan win" but he
knows he can't let a thing like that happen, now he is faced
with the reality of it. The companionship of the voyage has
brought them all too close for that.
(under his breath)
Hang the Blacksmith's Code!
Keitel leaps to his feet and joins in the attack. Erik,
meanwhile, is swinging across the deck from a rope.
I am the air! I am the wind!
Keitel and Thorfinn are now fighting side by side.
This is life, eh?
Keitel grins and strikes out. Ivar turns on Eilif who has
reluctantly joined the fray. Maybe he's singled Ivar out as
the most harmless. Ivar suddenly realizes he's only armed
with drumsticks. Eilif smiles evilly.
Eilif's sword slices through Ivar's drumsticks. Ivar turns
to run, but is stopped by a dog-soldier. Eilif takes the
opportunity to run him through from behind.
(as he dies)
Erik sees Ivar's demise.
Erik leaps to take revenge. He jumps into the galley-pit and
out again a la Douglas Fairbanks in "The Thief of Baghdad"
and dispatches Eilif with a single thrust. Sven and his dad
are fighting surrounded by dog-soldiers.
Well, go on! Go berserk!
GIVE US A CHANCE, Dad!
Snorri appears from behind.
(to Sven's dad)
What about you? Why don't YOU go
I got to keep my eye on HIM...
Sven's dad looks uneasy. He is surrounded and, as a seasoned
campaigner, knows they haven't much chance. Halfdan smiles
to himself. The battle is going his way. Thorfinn meanwhile
is fighting two dog-soldiers but is attacked from behind by
Look out! Thorfinn!
But it's too late. Thorfinn is run through the back. Sven
goes berserk and kills all three dog-soldiers. Sven's dad
looks on, proud of his son for the first time. Maybe their
relationship will never be the same again.
Now Snorri sees something that cheers him up. Slaves are
coming up from below to join the battle. They are armed with
oars and swords. They join the fray, knocking dog-soldiers
overboard with their oars. The dog-soldier are suddenly
outnumbered. Halfdan's smile fades, and he looks around for
an escape route. The tide of battle has now turned
dramatically as dog-soldier after dog-soldier is tossed over
the side or laid low by the combination of Vikings and slaves.
Halfdan and Gisli slip into a lifeboat and sneak off. The
rats are leaving the sinking ship.
BACK ON THE DECK
All the dog-soldiers are dead or overboard. The slaves and
Vikings are cheering and embracing each other. At the other
end of the boat, Sven is cradling the dying Thorfinn in his
arms. All around are jubilant slaves celebrating their
Thorfinn! You can't die!
I'm not frightened... of anything...
You'll see my grandfather in Valhalla!
No... he's not... not... there...
Tell him I'm coming!
Thorfinn dies. Sven holds him and a tear comes down his face.
The danger has made comrades of the two rivals.
Erik, however, is still fighting a last lone dog-soldier;
but just as he is about to run him through the dog-soldier
is stabbed in the back. He sinks to the floor, revealing
another dog-soldier. Erik is outraged by this act of treachery
and turns on the assassin.
No! No! Wait! Please wait, Erik!
The dog-soldier pulls his mask off to reveal he is, in fact,
Loki. Erik is totally non-plussed.
LOKI! Where did YOU come from?
Halfdan wanted to stop you waking
the Gods... so... I disguised myself
to sabotage their plans.
Erik has meanwhile been joined by the remaining comrades.
To save YOU, Erik.
Erik is about to say "But how can you see me? I'm wearing
the Cloak Invisible."
It was my master Keitel's idea.
All eyes turn on Keitel who looks very uncomfortable.
Wasn't it, Keitel?
Well... I... I thought...
Keitel is overcome by the power of Loki's will, but he is
deeply ashamed of his complicity in Loki's deeds. Snorri
gazes at Keitel with growing suspicion.
But... How is it you can see me?
(he looks round)
You can all see me?
What d'you mean?
SNORRI AND OTHERS
Why shouldn't we see you?
I can't see him.
I'm wearing the Cloak Invisible....
Erik takes it off to demonstrate.
Oh! There you are!
(to the others)
You mean... you could see me all the
The Vikings look at each other, mystified.
Weren't we supposed to?
Oh... I feel a little... oh...
Erik's knees give way and he faints onto the deck.
KING'S HALL - SOME TIME LATER
A victory celebration is in progress. It is a little bit
like a Hampstead cocktail party, and the rough, battle-stained
Vikings look rather out of place holding their little canapés.
Suddenly the King claps for silence.
We are grateful to you, Erik, and to
Yes, we are...
And there is only ONE way we can
repay you... Musicians!
King Arnulf claps his hands. Erik rushes over to him, anxious
to avoid another Hy-Brasilian concert.
Well, we'd love to hear you sing
again, but what we'd really appreciate
would be if you could see your way
to lending... not giving of course...
but just lending us the... um...
the, well, to be quite blunt... the
All the time Erik is talking the doors of the hall behind
are opening and a vast lur or horn is carried in by six
bearers. One or two of the Vikings have turned to look and
are now standing speechless. King Arnulf beams at Erik.
Now Erik finally turns and looks at what everyone else is
looking at. Erik's jaw drops. Everyone in the court beams at
Erik, except Aud who is looking sad and disappointed.
(when he can find his
Is THAT it?
A cloud passes over King Arnulf's happy face.
Is there something the matter with
Oh! No! No... of course not... it's
just I hadn't expected it to be quite
Well, it's not called the Horn
Resounding for nothing.
You DO know how to play the horn,
Yes... oh, yes...
Then I expect you'll be leaving first
thing in the morning.
The King manhandles Erik away from his daughter. Perhaps we
have the feeling that she's isn't going to let Erik go as
easily as that... Mix through to later that night. The Vikings
are lying asleep on the Great Hall, beside the Horn
Resounding. The camera closes in on Keitel. Suddenly a voice
comes from the shadows:
Keitel! Keitel Blacksmith!
Keitel opens his eyes and finds Loki close beside him.
What's the matter, Keitel Blacksmith?
Have you forgotten why you came on
Keitel is silent.
Are you going to let Erik wake the
How can we stops him now?
Loki looks around and then opens his hand in front of Keitel.
In it is the mouthpiece from the Horn Resounding.
Take this and throw it from the cliff
heights. They'll never make the Horn
Resounding sound without it.
Keitel frowns. Then an obvious thought limps across his
But why me? Why don't you do it?
YOU do it!
You'll be able to throw it further
than I could.
Keitel thinks. This is true.
It must go far out to sea.
Loki presses the mouthpiece on Keitel. Keitel takes it, but
reluctantly. Another Viking stirs.
Surely you haven't forgotten the
Keitel is about to reply and say he's been having second
thoughts about it, but somehow he can't. Loki has such power
Suddenly another Viking stirs, and Loki hisses at him.
Loki pretend to go back to sleep. Keitel (feeling a bit
lumbered) thinks about his task and hesitates... Who knows?
Perhaps he is about to stand firm, but Loki plays his trump
(without opening his
Or I might have to tell Erik why you
really came on this voyage.
Keitel is caught. He closes his eyes in resignation and then
reluctantly starts to make his way out of the Hall. As he
gets to the doors he trips over Snorri, who wakes. The
mouthpiece falls a few feet away.
It's me. I'm just going to water the
(he gives a false
Snorri notices the silver mouthpiece on the floor, but he
pretends he hasn't.
Oh... clumsy idiot.
Snorri pretends to go back to sleep, but he opens one eye
and watches Keitel Blacksmith recover the mouthpiece, and
then follows Keitel out. Loki gets up too. He follows to
keep an eye on Snorri.
AUD ON THE SHORE
Gazing moodily out to sea. She is brooding in Erik's imminent
departure. Suddenly a stone falls from above; she looks up
and sees a figure appear on the cliff above. Hurriedly she
withdraws into the shadows. Keitel Blacksmith appears on the
cliff-top. In his hands he holds the mouthpiece of the Horn
Resounding. He examines it, turning over in his mind whether
he is doing the right thing or not. Then he decides he must.
My fellow blacksmiths.
He prepares to throw it.
Keitel jumps out of his skin.
What are you doing, Keitel Blacksmith?
Get away, Snorri.
What have you got there?
Snorri advances towards Keitel. Keitel backs away, dangerously
near to the edge of the cliff. His boot slips and he jerks
himself forward. At the same time Snorri makes a grab for
the mouthpiece. A scuffle ensues, during which the mouthpiece
of the Horn Resounding is dropped. It bounces off the cliff
and falls down to the shore below. Aud steps out of the shadow
and picks it up. She frowns and looks up, and then screams,
as she sees the men fighting.
But it's too late. Snorri goes white, gives a hideous gasp...
and sinks slowly to his knees -- revealing Loki standing
behind him with a bloody knife. As Keitel and Loki watch
Snorri die, a drop of blood from the knife falls to the
ground. The moment it lands, there is a deep subterranean
groan, and the earth begins to tremble violently. Keitel and
Loki look around in alarm.
Oh Gods! What have we done?
BACK IN THE KING'S HALL
Sven, Sven's dad and Harald are wide awake, but for the moment
paralyzed, as bits of masonry crash around them. The cheerful
figure of King Arnulf appears at the top of a stairway. He
raises his hands.
Stay calm! This is NOT happening.
The King then hurries out of a door at the top of the
What did he say?
The doors of the Great Hall burst open and a wall of water
crashes through, knocking the Vikings off their feet. There
is little doubt that the whole of Hy-Brasil is sinking see a
street go down, a statue sink and then we:
CLOSEUP OF KING ARNULF
He is standing at the top of the Forum steps addressing a
crowd of anxious citizens. They are keeping surprisingly
good order considering they are already standing ankle-deep
in water, and the whole town is rapidly sinking around them.
Now, I know what some of you must be
thinking... the day has come....
we're all going down, etc. etc. But
let's get away from the fantasy and
look at the FACTS. FACT ONE -- The
threat of total destruction has kept
the peace for one thousand years.
FACT TWO -- The chances of it failing
now are therefore one in three hundred
and sixty-five thousand. FACT THREE...
By this time the water is up to people's knees, and several
have crowded onto the lower steps to avoid getting wet.
FACT THREE -- Our safety regulations
are the most rigorous in the world.
We are all nice to each other, we
never rub each other up the wrong
way or contradict each other, do we?
Rumble. The buildings sink and masonry falls.
We... er... do seem to be going down
quite fast, Your Majesty -- not trying
to contradict you, course.
No, of course you're not, citizen.
But let's stick to the facts. There
has NEVER been a safer, more certain
way of keeping the peace. So
whatever's happening, you can rest
assured, Hy-Brasil is NOT sinking.
Repeat, NOT sinking.
AN UNFORTUNATE HY-BRASILIAN
Who looks out of a window to see if it's raining, but is
immersed before he can find out.
The citizens in the Forum, however, are reassured by the
King's words -- even though they are now up to their waists
in water. One of them steps forward.
May I just make a point in support
of what King Arnulf's just said?
We'd be delighted -- wouldn't we?
Yes, we'd certainly like to hear
what one of us has got to say...
Erik, Sven, Sven's dad and Harald struggle out of the Great
Hall, carrying their belongings and the Horn Resounding,
while the citizen is still speaking most articulately in
support of the King. They are ALMOST in a panic.
What are you all doing?
CITIZEN AT THE BACK
It's all right. It's not happening.
The place is sinking!
CITIZEN AT THE BACK
Yes... I thought it was too, but the
King's just pointed out that it can't
(still speaking in
support of the King)
...and, of course, we mustn't forget
King Arnulf's EXCELLENT eye for flower-
There is a smattering of applause. A few people pull their
robes up out of the wet. Erik leaps onto a wall and shouts
to the crowd.
Save yourselves! Hy-Brasil... is
There are a lot of knowing smiles amongst the citizens.
CITIZEN FROM MIDDLE
Look, you don't know our safety
It can't happen.
But it IS! Look!
The important thing is not to panic.
Quite... yes... we understand...
I've already appointed the Chancellor
as Chairman of a committee to find
out exactly what IS going on, and
meantime I suggest we have a sing-
Can we do the one that goes "TUM-TI-
Erik looks around in despair.
Meanwhile in another street someone is struggling in the
I can't swim! I can't swim!
I'm drowning! Help!
Loki grabs Keitel round the neck.
But Keitel is pulled under. He re-emerges spluttering.
Urrgh! Argh! Let go, you idiot!
You'll drown us bo...
But they go under again. At this point Erik, Sven, Sven's
dad and Harald swim round the corner, pushing the Horn
Resounding. They see the figures disappearing under the water.
Erik, Sven and Co. swim as fast as they can to rescue the
drowning pair. They struggle to overpower the panic-stricken
Loki, but he puts up a manic fight. Unexpectedly, Harald
Missionary suddenly unleashes a vicious right hook and lays
Loki out cold. There is a moment's stunned silence that is
no unmingled with indignation.
(with hurt surprise)
You hit him!
Well, it's what you're supposed to
do... isn't it?
They look up as Golden Dragon sails around a corner of the
street, piloted by Aud. As the Vikings scramble aboard, the
sound of the "sing-song" reaches a particularly noisy and
discordant climax attract their attention.
BACK IN WHAT WAS THE FORUM
A crowd of unconcerned-looking citizens is sitting on the
last roof and just coming to the end of another appalling
You know, I think we're getting
(with genuine interest)
How can you tell?
(a bit stumped)
The King looks up.
It's all right! It isn't happening!
But, Father, it IS!
Get on board!
Who do you think YOU are?
The roof is now sinking rapidly, though the citizens appear
as unperturbed as ever.
Leave us alone!
Yeah. Leave 'em alone.
It's sinking! Hy-Brasil is sinking!
Well, my dear, I think you'll find
it's all a question of what you want
to believe in.... I have slightly
more experience of these matters
Unfortunately, at this point, the entire gathering of
citizens, the King and the Forum Temple disappear below the
(tears spring to her
Harald Missionary has put his arm around Aud in a fatherly
There, my child... it's at times
like this that this book can be a
Erik shoos him away.
(with his usual
GOLDEN DRAGON spins alone in the wide ocean.
SOME TIME LATER
They are all gathered in front of the Horn Resounding.
We must blow the first note... he
note that will take us to Asgaard...
(nervously and with
awe in his voice)
Over the Edge of the World.
The other men look up at the Horn Resounding, and begin to
feel a bit nervous.
We are going where only the dead
have been before...
Erik takes a deep breath and then puts his lips to the Horn
Resounding. He blows. There is a splutter, and one or two of
the Vikings titter amongst themselves. He has another go.
But again, all he produces is a pathetic spluttering.
(not unkindly in his
Uh! Here! Give it to me!
Sven pushes Erik aside. Sven blow... he becomes redder and
redder. But all he produces is a splutter. He gets a bit
Sven's dad looks heavenwards.
You're not using the right technique.
Sven's dad tries to take it over.
No! I'm doing it!
They start to struggle.
You're always telling me... TELLING
Erik tries to separate them.
(to his dad)
Let me do something for myself for a
Suddenly Aud comes forward.
No! Don't quarrel!
Sven and his dad stop fighting, surprised by the vehement in
We'll never get where we want to go
if we fight.
Aud crosses to the Horn and inserts the mouthpiece. Loki
glances at Keitel. He hadn't bargained for this!
Er... don't blow it! You never know
WHAT might happen...
It has not spoken for a thousand
years... You must bring it to life
with a kiss...
She puts her lips to the mouthpiece and just touches it with
them... almost a kiss... then... very gently... she begins
to blow... a soft... slight note can just be heard... Aud
takes her mouth away from the mouthpiece... and the soft
note goes on... reverberating... A sweet note... a magic
note... the Vikings stand stock-still, enchanted by the
sound... and the sound all the time is getting louder and
the Horn begins to vibrate with the note. As the volume
increases the Golden Dragon itself begins to reverberate
with the sound. Rings of ripples begin to radiate out from
the boat across the calm water. The note grows louder and
louder, and the Vikings, who at first were laughing and
cheering at Aud's success, begin to get rather alarmed. Louder
and louder gets the note and the Horn shakes and the boat
vibrates. Things start to be shaken loose, and fall onto the
deck. Ropes uncoil and run loose. A heavy block suddenly
crashes down to the deck, crowning Harald and laying him out
flat. Louder and louder grows the note, and the Vikings have
to stop their ears for the pain. The water around the ship
becomes more and more agitated. And then another sound is
heard. It is the thunder of water in the distance like a
million distant waterfalls. And suddenly they notice the sea
is running like a river -- all in one direction... sweeping
the ship forward with incredible momentum. In no time they
are engulfed in a mist, still traveling at a rate of knots.
Almost at once an appointed rock looms out of the mist ahead
of them. Erik flings himself at the steering oar, and everyone
is thrown about as the ship veers wildly and just misses the
rock, only to see another looming up ahead of them. The ship
veers again, as a third rock looms ahead. This time Sven has
grabbed a coil of rope, and as they pass the third rock, he
throws it like a lasso over the rock. Loki and Keitel leap
to grab the rope just as the rope goes taut and the ship
comes to a lurching stop, anchored by the rope, but still
swaying and buffeted in the racing waters. Those on board
shout to each other, soaked to the skin. It is difficult to
make out what they are shouting.
What are you doing?
What d'you think? Help! Somebody
(pointing at Aud)
She wants to kill us!
She wants to take us over the Edge
of the World!
You want to get to Asgaard, don't
How do we know this is the way?
We blew the Horn Resounding.
(screaming and pointing
an accusing finger
SHE blew the Horn Resounding.
Don't you see, Erik! She wants
What are you talking about?
She knows it was our fault!
Keep your mouth shut, Keitel!
No! It's YOU, Loki! I should never
have listened to you!
Loki looks around desperately.
You've lost your mind.
We came to stop you waking the Gods,
Erik! But I didn't want anyone to
Suddenly Loki produces his stiletto and leaps onto Keitel,
stabbing at him.
I should have got rid of you long
Like you got rid of Snorri!
Erik tries to separate them.
No! No! We are in the spell of the
Horn! Hatred will destroy us.
For a split second Erik is distracted. He looks across at
Aud and for a moment he sees Freya standing there.
Once you are in the spell of the
Horn, hatred will destroy you...
Then it is Aud once more. But in that split second Loki has
Erik staggers back clutching his arm. Keitel gives a roar of
rage, and picks Loki up bodily and hurls him out of the boat
into the maelstrom. The other Vikings look on aghast. Keitel
turns on them.
He killed Snorri! He caused the land
of Hy-Brasil to sink! SHE knew!
I didn't know!
Now she wants to send us over the
Edge of the World!
How else d'you think we're going to
get to Asgaard?
The Vikings look at each other amidst the roaring waters and
the thick spray. Erik holds his bleeding arm and looks at
Aud. Should he trust her or not? Suddenly he turns on the
(shouting above the
Do YOU know the way to Asgaard, Keitel
Keitel shakes his head.
Do YOU know the way to Asgaard, Sven?
Sven shakes his head.
There is one road before us, and
that leads over the Edge of the World.
Harald sits up as he returns to consciousness.
There IS no Edge of the World.
Sven's dad bonks him again. Erik takes the rope and begins
paying it out. With grim faces the Vikings turn and face
towards the roaring of the waters, as Erik edge the ship
further into the mist. The noise is deafening. It would be
almost impossible to hear any voice above it.
The faces of the Vikings betray their fear as they find
themselves emerging from out of the mist at the Edge of the
World. They gape as they find themselves confronted by a
Waterfall of Seas -- stretching on either side of them -- as
far as the eye can see -- water falling and plunging over
the lip of the world. And in front of them -- the blue sky
continues on down and down until it shades into blackness
strewn with stars beneath their feet...
Sven, Sven's dad and Keitel edge to the prow and gasp.
No! Don't look over the Edge!
Erik lets out a little more rope, until the ship is protruding
over the edge. Sven, his dad and Keitel peer over the side,
and stare down into the abyss. They gasp. From above we see
the prow of Golden Dragon and the backs of the Vikings' heads
in plain view against a backdrop of stars below them.
Let me see!
Aud holds him back.
No. Don't look... The abyss will
suck away your strength.
I MUST look! Keitel! Hold this!
Erik turns to see Sven and Keitel trembling... They hold
onto the sides of the ship but their legs can barely support
There is nothing we can do...
Keitel start to laugh.
Ha ha... I believed Loki... I believed
I had a duty to blacksmiths! Ha ha
Keitel laughs a little hysterically. Aud turns urgently to
YOU still want to go to Asgaard?
Do you believe I love you?
I... but I...
You don't have to love me. Just: do
you believe I love YOU?
Yes -- I believe you do.
Then let go!
Erik hesitates, then he decides to believe in Aud. He throws
the rope away. At once the ship shoots off over the Edge of
the World into space... Everything seems to slow down, as
the longship drops down and down... the ship twists slowly
as it drops.... round and round. The Vikings gaze about them
in wonder, as they find their ship if falling in silence
amongst the stars. Harald comes to once again.
I'm still seeing stars.
Keitel looks round at him.
We're ALL seeing stars.
No! I was hit on the head.
The longship falls and falls through the star-strewn space
until it softly lands in a white wilderness.
On the deck the Vikings are huddles up, covered with rime-
frost. It seems as if they have been lying there half-frozen
for some time.
Perhaps the entire adventure has all been a dream, and they
have been stuck in the Arctic pack-ice the whole time. The
hallucinations of men near to death.
Aud tries to wake Erik.
Don't sleep... wake... Look!
Erik opens his eyes and, for an instant, he sees Helga. He
blinks and realizes it is Aud who is calling him back to
consciousness. Suddenly colored lights begin to play to his
Bi-Frost... The Rainbow Bridge.
Above them the Aurora Borealis stretches up, magnificent and
awesome in the sky. Erik makes his way through the other
The others slowly begin to rouse themselves from their icy
slumber and sit up, awed by the sight.
Are we dead?
The Rainbow Bridge.
They all peer up at the ever-changing colors of the Aurora
Borealis, hanging in the sky above them like organ-pipes.
But something is happening. The lights begin to fade to reveal
a magical city on a mountain. The Vikings realize that this
is journey's end... they have reached Asgaard... the City of
the Gods. The Vikings all catch their breaths and gaze in
Up there, you fathead.
Harald look round quizzically at the others. It is clear
that he can see nothing.
Look! It's real.
Harald looks around at the others.
Hallucinations are real.
It's no use; Harald can see nothing. The Vikings, transfixed
by the sight of their fabled home of the Gods, rise to their
feet. Aud whispers to Erik.
The second note.
The second note to wake the Gods...
Erik kneels in front of the Horn.
Erik blows... a soft gentle note... He takes his mouth away,
and smiles at Aud. Once again the Horn stars to vibrate and
the note gets louder... the ship starts to vibrate... louder
The whole landscape starts to vibrate... louder and louder
grows the note until even the stars in the sky are vibrating
and then a magical thing starts to happen... The note fades
as one by one the shimmering stars start to fall out of the
night sky... they fall like silver snow... until the ship...
the Vikings... Asgaard... the whole landscape is covered in
sparkling dust... then in the ensuing silence the first light
begins to glow in the Halls of Asgaard... then another...
and another... Erik stares as is bewitched and slowly begins
to climb out of Golden Dragon.... but Aud tries to pull him
Erik! You've done what you came to
Aud looks at him.
Blow the third note! The note to
take us home!
There is something I must ask the
No living man has ever set foot in
the Halls of Asgaard... The Gods
will never let you return.
Erik looks at her... for a moment... But he knows he has no
I came to find my grandfather.
I have to go...
Then I shall come too.
(stares at her)
I don't want to live WITHOUT you.
But, Aud... I... I came to find
Aud is about to say "Her?", but she bites the word back and
looks down at the ground.
I'm sorry, Aud... I really am.
Aud kisses Erik, who then turns and climbs out of Golden
Dragon and sets off across the ice. Sven follows.
Wait for me! I'll be dead soon
You can't go without me!
They follow. Even Harald Missionary starts to follow.
Where are they all going?
Aren't you afraid?
Oh... There's nothing for ME to be
Harald smiles and sets off after the others. Aud follows.
The stars have fallen to form a shining, winding pathway up
to the City of the Gods. This is what the Vikings head for.
Between them and the Citadel strange huge forms rise up. The
Vikings approach and find the vast skeletons of the slain
giants. The Vikings are but tiny gnat-sized figures wending
their way between the vast figures.
They climb the stairway-path of stars, up the winding road
and eventually fins themselves outside the massive doors of
Sven turns on Harald.
There! It's real! It's solid! Now do
you believe us?
He pats the wall of Valhalla -- the Great Hall. Harald reaches
out, but his hand goes right through the wall.
There isn't anything.
Harald Missionary walks straight through the wall and
disappears from sight. The Vikings gasp, and run up to feel
the point where he disappeared. The door is perfectly solid
to them, and they jump pout of their skins as Harald suddenly
You're having me on, aren't you?
It's Valhalla -- where the warriors
slain in battle go.
It doesn't exist for him.
He's just s cynic.
At this moment there is a creak and the great doors
mysteriously swing open. As if mesmerized, the Vikings enter
the Halls of Asgaard. The door slams behind them. They spin
round, but the doors have vanished... No man has ever entered
the Halls of Asgaard and left alive...
Erik slowly starts to cross the vast floor looking around
him as he does so. One by one the other Vikings follow. After
a while Erik stops.
The Vikings listen. They hear the sound of children laughing
and shouting. Erik and his men follow through the columns
towards a pool of light. The scene that greets their eyes is
not at all what they had been prepared for.
Valhalla is not full of the warriors slain in battle, quaffing
mead on the ale-bench and reliving old battles -- it is,
instead full of children romping, laughing, shouting,
quarreling and playing games... chess, fencing... dice...
tag, etc., around a wide hearth fire. Women are cooking and
doing other housewifely things... weaving, making bread,
etc. It is a thoroughly domestic scene. Suddenly one of them
turns at Erik. It is Helga, whom Erik accidentally killed in
Scene One. She is once again kneading dough. She has a red
stain under her breast.
Oh good! It's Mr. Wonderful!
Erik leaps to her side.
I've come to take you back to the
land of the living.
What a stupid idea.
What's the point of being dead in
the land of the living?
I'll ask the Gods to give you life
Helga looks at Erik very skeptically. She obviously thinks
he doesn't know what he's talking about. Aud reacts. Erik
takes Helga's hand -- and gets covered in dough.
Have you tried to ask the God for
Who is he talking to?
One of the children, throwing pennies against the wall, looks
The Vikings are recovering from their surprise.
(getting back to her
Is THAT Odin?
You'll have to wait till he's finished
Odin leaves his game and saunters towards Erik.
We have come from the world of
The child whom Odin is playing with points his hammer at the
ground near Erik and a lightning bolt zaps into it. Erik
No, wait, Thor.
You must help us.
We don't HAVE to help anybody.
Fenrir the Wolf covers the sun --
men fight and kill each other the
Why should WE care?
Because... you're... you're the
Bring the Age of Ragnarok to an end
and stop all this fighting and
Harald looks around at the Vikings in increasing desperation.
This is ridiculous.
The other Child-Gods have stopped playing around now and are
watching Erik and Odin.
Erik the Viking! The things you seek
are not in our power. We don't make
men love each other or hate each
But you're the Gods!
Odin whistles. The other children look over their shoulders.
From out of the darkness of the perimeter of the Hall, shadows
emerge... shadows that, as they shuffle and stumble into the
light, reveal themselves to be the heroes that the Vikings
had expected to find in Valhalla. But they are not hale and
hearty giants quaffing mead and reliving their great
battles... they are, in fact, a sorry lot... the slain-in-
battle still bearing the hideous deformities of their fatal
wounds. Most have a sword or an axe buried in some part of
their anatomy. One has been cleft in twain...
The Vikings react to this grisly gathering as more and more
of them emerge from the shadows. They gasp as they notice
Snorri, Ivar, Thorfinn, Loki and Leif the Lucky.
Here we are standing on a bare
mountain top talking to thin air.
We notice that Harald's cloak is being blown about as if he
were indeed on a bare mountain top. The other's cloaks are
still. Sven's dad is gazing across at one horribly mutilated
How can you tell?
I'll never forget him! The BASTARD!
Sven reacts. Sven's dad starts to go berserk.
He drove me mad!
And his "you'll never be a Berserk
if you lose your temper"...
I hate you! I hate you!
Sven's dad collapses against Sven and Sven comforts him,
understandingly. A figure emerges from the throng of dead.
It is Thorfinn. Sven looks up at him.
You won, Sven.
What right have YOU to try and stop
men fighting, Erik the Viking? There
is glory in battle. There are riches
to be made and won...
Made by YOU, Loki!
By YOU -- Keitel Blacksmith! Don't
you know, Erik, that is why he went
with you? Ragnarok was good for his
It's not my business any more!
Suddenly there is a howl... a bitter howl that echoes above
and around the Halls of Asgaard and that gets more distant
and more distant. Everyone (including the dead heroes and
the Gods) freezes and looks up, listening. Perhaps we cut
away to the boiling sky as it resolves itself into the shape
of a wolf that snarls and slinks away. Odin turns to Erik as
the howling recedes.
Fenrir the Wolf has gone, Erik. But
will men cease fighting each other?
THAT is not in our power...
Odin starts to laugh. All the other children start to laugh...
so do the dead heroes. Erik and his men look round uneasily.
I have one more request before we
Erik turns towards Helga, who is still standing at her trough
of dough with her arms up to her elbows in flour. Aud watches
Erik with sadness in her heart.
Return? You have set your foot in
the Halls of Asgaard, Erik. You cannot
Aud looks round to see how the others react. It is as she
had feared. Erik pales. The blood drains from the other's
faces. Aud whispers something to Harald. Harald looks at her
But you're all imagining this...
whatever it is.
You're the only one who can. PLEASE.
Harald look around at the dumbfounded Vikings. Then he shrugs
and wanders off, disappearing through the closed doors of
You mean... we must stay here forever?
As he says this Erik's eyes turn again towards Helga. He is
clearly thinking at least there are compensations... Odin,
however, is laughing again.
Stay HERE? Ha ha! This is Valhalla.
This is reserved for those slain-in-
HORRIBLY SLAIN WARRIOR
Yeah! We're the LUCKY ones!
HORRIBLY SLAIN FRIEND OF HIS
Yeah. It's much better than dying of
The ghastly and dismembered dead warriors all chortle no end
at the dismay written on the face of Erik and his men. At
the same time there is a grinding, wincing sound. All those
around the hearth-place fall back as a vast grating is winced
up from out of the flames. The Vikings look at each other.
For YOU there is only the Pit of
As Odin says this there is a roaring sound and the flames
and smoke are suddenly reversed and as the roaring increases
the flames are sucked down altogether to reveal the black
Pit of Hel itself. And now the Pit is sucking the Vikings
into it... their hair blows... they try to withstand the
force that is drawing them towards the abyss... The Gods
look on in some amusement. But some of the dead are concerned.
Son! My son!
Sven tries to reconcile his father and grandfather, but it's
no use. He is sucked towards the Pit.
I tried to save you!
Why should you care?
I don't know! I just did!
Erik can no longer withstand the force that is sucking him
down to the Pit of Hel. Suddenly, however, Snorri has leapt
from the ranks of the dead. He grabs Erik and tries to stop
him sliding towards the Pit of Hel. But it's no good.
No! Let go, Snorri!
I've got you!
You'll be sucked down too!
Meanwhile, Ivar and Thorfinn and Leif the Lucky have also
leapt forward to save their comrades. They put up a fantastic
struggle but remorselessly they are all sucked down.
The Vikings clutch at the stone floor, their fingers trace
blood as they try to cling on... but to no avail. The first
are already toppling into the Pit.
And the rest -- including Aud -- soon follow.
The mouth of the Pit of Hel, through which the Vikings are
now tumbling higgledy-piggledy, is a round white disc set in
the unutterable blackness of the pit. However, as the Vikings
free-fall slowly towards camera, they are lit up by a faint,
reddish glow from below. They are staring, wild-eyed and
screaming as they fall. As they fall, Erik manages to smash
his axe into the side of the Pit. Thorfinn grabs his leg and
holds onto Sven's foot. Leif clutches at Sven's belt. Sven's
dad hangs onto Sven's foot. Ivar clutches Thorfinn's foot.
Erik clutches Ivar's leg and Aud clutches Erik's. They dangle
like this for some seconds, and look fearfully beneath them.
Then they can see the Infernal Regions of flame and molten
lava... somehow suggesting the face of a huge and sinister
creature. No wonder they're scared out of their wits.
Meanwhile, Odin and Thor appear at the top of the Pit and
look down with mild amusement. Thor casually points his hammer
and a streak of lightning zaps Erik's axe. It instantly glows
red hot. Erik screams. Suddenly we hear a new sound -- a
long, high, sweet note.
Listen! LISTEN! The third note!
But it's no good. Erik has to let go of the red-hot axe.
Everyone screams as they start to plunge down towards the
Pit of Hel.
Harald Missionary is blowing the Horn Resounding.
I want to go home... Oooh!
Suddenly Golden Dragon, the Horn Resounding and Harald
Missionary shoot up into the air and disappear from sight.
CUT BACK TO:
THE PIT OF HEL
The Vikings are looking down as they fall -- they are still
scared but gradually start laughing... laughing as they fall
down and down and down until they fall out of sight. We are
left with a blackness and just the white disc of the mouth
of the Pit of Hel above, until the disc changes magically
into the moon. There is a series of splashes.
The note begins to fade and the camera slowly pans down to
reveal the Vikings all fallen into the duck pond back at
Ravensfjord. They are laughing and whooping and splashing
I don't believe it... Ha ha ha! It
brought us HOME!
But who BLEW it?
Oh! Who cares? We're HOME!
Sven embraces his father and dances him around with joy.
Yo hoo! We're here! We're...
Suddenly the joy drains from their faces and they each gape
in horror. What is it they see?
We cut to see that out of the huts the women and children
and old men are emerging -- but they are anything but happy.
In fact they are all bound and gagged. Behind them emerge
the sinister figures of Halfdan the Black, Gisli and maybe
half a dozen armed men. Halfdan and his cronies no longer
look sleek and self-assured. They are haggard and desperate.
Their faces are streaked with dirt and sweat, and their
clothes are torn and soiled. They have clearly been going
through a lean time, since Ragnarok ended, and have descended
on the village for revenge and for whatever plunder they can
find. They have a few sackfuls of booty with them. They herd
the women, children and old men into a pathetic huddle in
the middle of the village. Halfdan is spitting evil and
Throw down your weapons -- or we
shoot the children first.
Erik hesitates... The others look at him. What choice have
they? Reluctantly, Erik throws his weapons into the pond.
The others follow suit. Halfdan watches. His men stand around
him in a tight group with their backs to each other.
Good... Good... Right, now we'll
just shoot the children anyway...
Erik is paralyzed. What can they do? Half Halfdan's men are
aiming their crossbows at Erik and his comrades, and half
are aiming at the women and children. They raise the crossbows
to shoot. Their fingers tighten on the triggers.
Suddenly there is a scream from above.
Look out below!
Everyone looks up and, amazingly, out of the sky falls Golden
Dragon and lands fair and square on top of Halfdan and his
gang, squashing them flat. Harald Missionary staggers blearily
from the wreckage.
She rushes to Harald, while the Vikings rush to release their
loved ones. Great celebrations all round.
They all turn and see the sun rising. The villagers gasp in
wonder. They've never seen the sun before. Erik looks around
and sees Thorfinn and Sven with their arms round each other.
Aud looks up as Erik smiles at he and holds her to him. Then
they all turn and gaze at the spectacle of the sun returning
to the world.
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