One morning, Thor woke up and could not find his hammer Mjollnir. Mjollnir was very important to Thor. With his hammer, he made the thunder and the lightning. Mjollnir the hammer made Thor as strong as a hundred men.
Thor looked under his bed, but it was not there. He looked in the room where he had his swords and axes and helmets, but it was not there. He looked in every one of the five hundred rooms of his palace Bilskimir, but it was not there. There was no sign at all of Mjollnir, his magic hammer.
At first, Thor did not get worried. Thor was not the type of god who worried. Instead, Thor got angry, quickly. And when he could not find Mjollnir, he got very angry, very quickly. 'Where is it?' he shouted. 'Where's Mjollnir?'
Without Mjollnir, Thor could not make the thunder and lightning. Without Mjollnir, Thor was not the strongest of the gods.
Then, slowly, an idea came into his head: Loki! Loki was always playing tricks and jokes on the other gods. 'I know what's happening!' he thought to himself. 'I'm sure that Loki has taken my hammer for a joke!' Now, he got even more angry.
'Loki!' he shouted. 'Where are you? And what have you done with my hammer?'
Loki appeared. 'I have no idea!' he said.
'I don't believe you,' said Thor. 'You're playing a trick on me, aren't you? Where's my hammer Mjollnir? If you don't tell me, I'll...'
But Thor did not have time to finish his sentence. Loki did not like it when Thor was angry.
'I promise I don't know!' said Loki quickly. 'It's not me! I'm not playing a joke this time!'
'Then this is very serious,' said Thor. 'If the giants have taken Mjollnir, they can get into Asgard and attack our city of the gods!'
'You're right,' said Loki. 'We need to do something.' So Loki came up with a plan.
'Here's what I'll do,' he said, 'I'll borrow Freyja's falcon skin, and with that, I can pretend to be a bird! I'll fly all around the world and look for the hammer.'
'Very well,' said Thor. 'Off you go — and be quick!'
Loki took the goddess's magic falcon skin and when he put it on, he became a bird — a large falcon. He flew all around Asgard and Midgard looking for the hammer. But he did not find anything. Then he went to Jotunheim, where the giants lived, and there he saw the king of the giants — Thrym. Thrym was looking very happy. He was smiling, and singing a little song to himself.
Loki took off the falcon skin, and became himself again. 'So,' Loki asked the giant. 'Where is it?'
'Where is what?' replied Thrym.
'You know what I'm talking about,' said Loki. 'Where is Mjollnir, the magic hammer you've taken from Thor!'
The giant told the truth. 'Ha!' he laughed. 'Yes! It's true. I took the hammer from Thor while he was fast asleep! He didn't see a thing! He's not very clever for a god, is he?'
'It's ours!' said Loki, 'Return it to us! Right now!'
'No way!' replied Thrym.
'If you don't give it to us at once, the gods will attack you!' said Loki angrily.
'You know that you can't fight against me if I have the hammer Mjollnir!' said Thrym. 'I will be much stronger — I will win!'
Loki said nothing. He knew that Thrym was right. 'Very well, then,' he said. 'I have an idea. Listen, if we give you something else, then will you give us Mjollnir?'
'Hmmm...' said Thrym. 'That's not a bad idea. After all, it's not Mjollnir that I want...'
'No?' asked Loki. 'What is it that you want?'
'The goddess Freyja! She's the most beautiful woman I've ever seen,' said Thrym. 'I want to marry the goddess Freyja!'
'So,' said Loki, 'If you can marry Freyja, will you give us the hammer?'
'Exactly right!' said Thrym.
'I'll see what I can do,' said Loki, and flew off, to return to Asgard.
'Not a chance!' said Freyja. 'No way!'
'Please!' said Loki, and all the other gods with him. 'If you marry Thrym, he'll give us the hammer, and the giants won't attack Asgard.'
But Freyja did not want to hear of it. 'There's no way I'm going to marry an ugly, old giant only to make all of you happy,' she shouted.
It was impossible. Even though the gods asked and asked, Freyja simply refused to marry the giant Thrym.
'She's right,' said Odin, after a long time. 'We'll have to think of another plan. What can we do?'
The gods all thought hard for a long time, until Loki had an idea. 'I know!' he said. 'Why doesn't Thor marry Thrym?'
'What!?' said all the other gods. 'What are you talking about?'
'Thrym the giant wants to marry the most beautiful woman there is — not a big man with a beard like Thor!' said Odin.
'That's true,' said Loki, 'But listen — we know that giants are not very intelligent...'
'That's true,' said Odin.
'And Thrym is a very stupid giant,' continued Loki.
'That's true!' said the other gods.
'So what we do is this: we put a wedding dress on Thor, and a bride's veil so Thrym can't see his face,' said Loki. 'Then we go to Jotunheim, and tell him Thor is Freyja!'
The other gods all laughed at the idea, but they liked it. 'Yes!' they said. 'This could work!'
'Then when Thrym gives us Mjollnir,' Loki said, 'We take it quickly, and run away!'
The next day, the gods all laughed again when they saw Thor wearing a wedding dress and bride's veil to cover his red hair and big beard. They laughed even more when he put on Freyja's beautiful necklace.
'That's not a beautiful bride!' said Balder, 'Anyone can see that's a man wearing a wedding dress!'
'That's not important,' said Odin. 'That giant is so stupid, he'll never see!'
Thor was very angry. 'I'm not going to do this!' he shouted. 'This is stupid!' He started to take off the veil from his face.
'Listen, my son,' said Odin to Thor. 'If you don't do this, it means the giants have Mjollnir. And you know what could happen if they come and fight us in Asgard with that magic hammer!'
Thor was angry, but he knew his father was right. It was too dangerous. He had to say 'yes' to Loki's plan — and let all the other gods laugh at him.
Loki and Thor (pretending to be the beautiful goddess Freyja) went to Jotunheim where the giant Thrym lived. As soon as Thrym saw the bride, he was very happy. 'My goodness!' he said. 'She's very tall!'
'That's true,' said Loki. 'Goddesses are very tall!'
'Can I see her face?' asked Thrym.
'No!' said Loki. 'The bride cannot take off her veil until after the wedding!'
'Oh, of course,' said Thrym. 'But can I hear her speak? I want to hear her say words of love to me!'
'No, you can't!' said Loki. 'The bride will only talk to you after the wedding.'
'Very well then,' said Thrym. 'Let's sit down now, and have the wedding dinner. After the dinner, we'll get married!'
They all sat down at a big table with lots of food on it. Thor was famous because of how much he ate — and even though he was wearing a wedding dress and a bride's veil, it did not stop him eating. First, he ate a cow. Then he ate twelve fish. Then he ate all the rest of the food on the table.
'Goodness!' said Thrym. 'She's very hungry!'
'That's because she's thinking about the wedding so much — she's forgotten to eat!' said Loki. 'She hasn't eaten anything for over a week! But now she's seen you, she's hungry again!'
Thor ate lots, but under the veil, he was very angry. 'I don't like this at all!' he whispered to Loki, and he started to take off the veil.
'No!' shouted Loki, and pulled the veil on to Thor's face again. But Thrym saw Thor's eyes.
'My goodness!' he said. 'She has very red eyes! I thought Freyja had beautiful, blue eyes.'
'That's because the bride is thinking so much about the wedding! She hasn't slept for three nights!' said Loki.
'I understand,' said Thrym. 'So, now we have eaten, let's get married!'
'Very well,' said Loki. 'But first — remember your promise! You must return the hammer Mjollnir to us!'
'Of course!' said the giant. He took out the big magic hammer and put it on the table.
As soon as Thor saw his hammer again, he could not stop himself. He jumped up, took off the bride's veil, took his hammer and laughed.
'Ha!' he said to Thrym. 'Surprised now, are you?' He lifted the hammer, and hit the giant on the head with it. 'And don't try that again!' Thor shouted to Thrym.
Then Thor and Loki returned to Asgard with the hammer Mjollnir.
'Don't tell anyone that I wore a wedding dress!' said Thor to Loki. 'I looked stupid!'
'Ha!' laughed Loki. 'Sometimes, Thor, you are stupid! But not as stupid as that giant!'
— THE END -