The Golden Age

The Asa-gods kill Ymer, and the maids of the world-mill grind him up to form the world. And in the garden of the gods there are golden apples of immortality; and in the sky the wolves chase the sun and the moon; and there is chaos and mist and all things are beautiful.

The Earth in these days was a ball of oil, and socks, and innocent men, surrounded by a seething sea of greenhouse gas. Woe to the modern world; for every day, a few more socks are lost, a little more innocence, a bit of oil, a bit of gas. Soon we will have nothing, and even this paltry silver age will end.

At the well wise Udr kept a record in which were written the names of those who would commit fraud; those fell betrayers of the public trust; those foredoomed from the beginning of the world to abuse their office. And as each is chased from their office by the hounds of scandal, we know that Udr puts a mark beside their name; and it suffices to prove a man’s innocence to say, “His name was not in Udr’s record.”

In those days, the young were well-behaved; and standards of public morality were high; and no one wanted to write a book. We know of this age only because a skald would sometimes wake in the night to see the army of grim-faced inquisitors standing beside; and they would say, “We need you, skald. We need you to write a book.” And the skald would scream. But they were relentless. They’d even correct punctuation. And in the end, the books were written.

In those days before the first of the heightened terrorism alerts, terrorism was actually negative. There were bombs just laying around in the streets, in unmarked briefcases, and terrorists would hurry up to them and remove them before people could get hurt. It was not a destructive art, back then. Their terrible vengeance manifested in constructive urges: they would build, they would create, they would descend on people’s homes in great construction gangs and craft (occasionally unlicensed) extensions.

The music of those times was a kind of occult gargling. One had only to listen to it and feel all one’s urges for violence and sexuality instantly disappear.

In those days, everyone agreed with you. Even about that.

It was a golden time.

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