Baldr’s Bale part 3
And Frigg took oaths to this purport, that fire and water should spare Baldr, likewise iron and metal of all kinds, stones, earth, trees, sicknesses, beasts, birds, venom, serpents. And when that was done and made known, then it was a diversion of Baldr’s and the Tesir, that he should stand up in the Thing, and all the others should some shoot at him, some hew at him, some beat him with stones; but whatsoever was done hurt him not at all, and that seemed to them all a very worshipful thing.
But when Loki Laufeyarson saw this, it pleased him ill that Baldr took no hurt. He went to Fensalir to Frigg, and made himself into the likeness of a woman. Then Frigg asked if that woman knew what the iEsir did at the Thing. She said that all were shooting at Baldr, and moreover, that he took no hurt. Then said Frigg: “Neither weapons nor trees may hurt Baldr: I have taken oaths of them all.” Then the woman asked: “Have all things taken oaths to spare Baldr?” and Frigg answered: “There grows a tree-sprout alone westward of Valhall; it is called Mistletoe; I thought it too young to ask the oath of.” Then straightway the woman turned away; but Loki took Mistletoe and pulled it up and went to the Thing.
Hodr stood outside the ring of men, because he was blind. Then spike Loki to him: “Why dost thou not shoot at Baldr?” He answered: “Because I see not where Baldr is; and for this also, that I am weaponless.” Then said Loki: “Do thou also after the manner of other men, and show Baldr honor as the other men do. I will direct thee where he stands; shoot at him with this wand.” Hodr took Mistletoe and shot at Baldr, being guided by Loki: the shaft flew through Baldr, and he fell dead to the earth; and that was the greatest mischance that has ever befallen among gods and men.
Baldr was fallen
Then, when Baldr was fallen, words failed all the TEsir, and their hands likewise to lay hold of him; each looked at the other, and all were of one mind as to him who had wrought the work, but none might take vengeance, so great a sanctuary was in that place. But when the ALsir tried to speak, then it befell first that weeping broke out, so that none might speak to the others with words concerning his grief. But Odin bore that misfortune by so much the worst, as he had most perception of how great harm and loss for the TEsir were in the death of Baldr.
Now when the gods had come to themselves, Frigg spake, and asked who there might be among the TEsir, who would fain have for his own all her love and favor: let him ride the road to Hel, and seek if he may find Baldr, and offer Hel a ransom if she will let Baldr come home to Asgard. And he is named Hermodr the Bold, Odin’s son, who undertook that embassy. Then Sleipnir was taken, Odin’s steed, and led forward; and Hermodr mounted on that horse and galloped off.