Featured image by Oliwa, at: https://www.pixiv.net/en/artworks/78004693
By Maren, Head Liaison of Northuldra-Arendelle Relations
So far, so good. Anna says I’m doing a great job, apparently, but I have to say it doesn’t feel like I’m helping her mastermind all these political victories. Sure, I can whip votes in the houses of the Great Assembly, and I stand my ground against the ministers and jarls who are… less inclined to vote along with Anna’s many bills. The ones who do support Anna seem to like me, and some of them even say that they support re-integration with Northuldra, which I guess is something that no one would have said just a few years ago.
Still, I had to actively mask my nervousness a few weeknights ago, when I met Queen Victoria for the first time. I had many conversations with Anna about that state ball. It had to be grand and welcoming, but also show off that Arendelle wasn’t to be messed around with. A diplomatic balance. And now that Vic is gone, I can confess to you that she was as every bit as intimidating as other heads of state have said. But I managed to stare down that imperious young lady. Probably because Elsa happened to be with her and Anna. Something about Elsa’s presence loosens me, makes me less tense. More fearless.
I’m not a fan of Arendellian food, I must admit. Kristoff says the salmon is the best around here, but I kind of find the fish back home a bit fresher. At least we both agree that we don’t take kindly to reindeer meat. We prefer them alive and keeping us company, thanks very much.
I do miss the open steppe beyond the formerly enchanted forest. I’ve emerged from the mist that covered our world, from a lifetime of never seeing the blue sky, just to live in a small apartment above this new embassy for my tribe. My mind is filled every day with politics. Look, Arendelle’s beautiful, no doubt about it. In my free time I love visiting Oaken’s sauna and stocking up on Vera’s candy (and boy, do I love the sauna). For the first time in my life I feel like I’m part of something big, even if I never even had that ambition in me. Everyone’s saying this role is right for me because I have leadership instincts, and I’m grateful for that.
Still, even though I’m not complaining, it’s a lot to take in for a country, reindeer herding gal like me.
If Elsa wants it, I’ll gladly stay and fight for both of our homelands’ interests. Anna told this paper that she and I make a great team, and she’s right. She’s taken all my proposals very seriously, including a cultural exchange initiative that would send kids from my tribe on a field trip to Arendelle, and children from here for few nights of camping in Northuldra. We need to complete that great bridge that is being built atop the dam ruins, something that Anna started before recruiting me. We need to rally support in the Great Assembly for more engineering projects connecting Northuldra and Arendelle. And most of all, we need to hammer out what the legal relationship between my tribes and the Arendellian people will look like. Anna and I agree that has to be one of equality and unity.
This is a goal for the long haul. Anna and I recoil at how so many other empires are treating their colonial possessions: the things I’ve read about, the reports from our spies and The Arendelle Guardian’s journalists… the human heart can be very dark, can’t it? I shudder when I realize that only Northuldra and Arendelle seem to be the only two places trying to be a light to the world, rather than joining the imperial darkness.
No wonder why the legacy of Runeard keeps Anna up at night. There’s so much riding on this, chief among them the idealistic possibility that two worlds can even co-exist in love, with neither oppressing the other.
Is it really a pipe-dream? I don’t know. I don’t know how realistic Anna thinks it is. Perhaps she is doing this solely because of Elsa, which I can’t blame her for. But while that’s a part of it, I think she feels the call of history. She feels something inside her urging to be better than her fellow sovereigns, better than Vic, better than what the world thinks is possible. Elsa certainly believes that Anna can be that, and I definitely do too.
Whether we’re speaking in parliament, taking a walk along the docksides, or talking late into the night with chief at the Nokk Club, or having some personal talk in Oaken’s sauna… Elsa is with us. There’s nothing Anna and I wouldn’t do for her.
4 thoughts on “Northuldra Nights with Maren: What I’d Do For Her”
((First off, love the art used in this piece))
Very amazing article, Maren, I gotta say, you’re a natural. I’m glad that you’re a part of Arendelle now, both you and Northuldra itself. Its what’s meant to be, these two nations are supposed to be aligned this way. Reunard took that all away but you and Anna and Elsa have brought that back. I may only be a humble young man who writes an article for this paper every now and again, but I cherish the fact that, like myself, you guys would do anything for your people, for our people, for Elsa and Anna. Its a lot to take in, I know, it was interesting for me to adjust to living in Arendelle myself. But I would say its the best decision I could make, and I think you will find the same belief. No matter what, we must stand firm against those who want to destroy what Queen Anna has built thus far, following what former Queen Elsa started.
You are doing a wonderful job for Arendelle Maren. I am most excited to learn more about the Northuldra once the bridge is completed and the two worlds are connected. What is your favorite dish from back home?
You and Queen Anna are doing a bang-up job in moving the alliance between Arendelle and Northuldra forward.
What are some of your favorite naitve foods back home in Northuldra?
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Thank you! It’s been a crazy couple of months in my new post and loft in the kingdom. Well, the most celebrated meat among our tribe is reindeer and fish – you’ll love how fresh we make it. But my favourite are the berries of our forest – lingonberries, blackberries, and cloudberries. I think Anna’s chefs could learn a thing or two from how I make lingonberry jam…