• Published 16th Apr 2022
  • 1,043 Views, 54 Comments

Valhalla - DanishDash

It's been four years since Thor left Equestria and Applejack. Missing her beloved, Applejack decides to find a way to get to his world! (Not connected to the marvel universe)

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Chapter 4: Midgard

Author's Note:

I'm sorry if this chapter felt a little short, in terms of stuff happening. However I had a few troubles with this one, but I think it does add to some of the background. I still hope you enjoy this chapter and later chapters to come. :twilightsmile:

I'm still looking for an experienced editor/proofreader. I know there are mistakes in my chapters I simply do not catch, and there are things that sounds right to me even if they are wrong. So if any of you have good experience, please shoot me a PM if you like to help out. :derpytongue2:

The wind of the sea gently moved across the water, and up onto the beach. Applejack could feel stirred from her slumber. She didn't feel sore, or really exhausted, instead she calmly opened her eyes, as if just waking up from a light nap. Sitting up, she found herself on a sandy beach, the sun was gone, and the sky was filled with stars.

Her mind was clouded the first few seconds, as if she was trying to remember what she was doing here. The sound of a crackling fire caught her attention, and she looked to her right. A camp fire was burning, and on the other side sat a unicorn wearing a cloak and a dusty old hat. He had a large gray beard, and looked slightly burned out, as if having spent too many days working to near exhaustion.

"You have traveled far." The old stallion said. "You must be tired and cold, come, sit by the fire."

Applejack wasn't sure how she was here, she could not focus her memory, it was all jumbled up. Still, she got up, moved closer to the fire and sat down. The old stallion didn't look at her, his eyes hidden by the wide brim of the floppy hat. He looked into the fire, poking it with a stick now and again.

"Where am I?"

She asked, looking around. She could not look far, it seemed now that she had gotten closer to the light of the fire, the shadows grew stronger around her. She couldn't even see the sea, although she could hear the gentle waves and smell it.

The old stallion didn't look at her. "You are where you are supposed to be."

Applejack frowned, her mind seeming to slowly come around. "Am I dead?"

"We would not be talking if you were."

Then she gasped, "what about my family?"

"Safe." He simply answered calmly. "They are asleep, do not worry."

Strangely, Applejack believed him. She couldn't put her hoof on it, but when the stallion spoke he seemed to hit some part of her that made her relax. Trust may be too strong a word, but right now, she felt safe by his side, and she believed it when he said her siblings were safe.

"You are a long way from home," the stallion said. "Or perhaps it is the other way around?"

"What? No, I'm from Ponyville." Applejack corrected. "This world is not my home."

"And the next?"

Applejack let out a half pained and annoyed grunt, placing a hoof to her head. "I don't understand."

"Your home is where your heart is." The stallion answered, poking the fire again with his stick. "Is your heart in Ponyville?"

"What?" Applejack frowned. "All my family and friends are in Ponyville."

"All your friends? All your family?"

"Well, no. Some have moved, others travel a lot, and my entire family lives throughout Equestria." She clarified, getting a little frustrated at the stallion.

"Does your heart lie with the one you love?"

She didn't hesitate in her answer, however she did feel like an animal being led into a trap. "Of course it does."

"Then does your home not also lie with him?"


"Or do you love the memory of the stallion you knew as Astral, but not the stallion he really is?"


The old stallion did so, but seemed to study her. She still could not see his eyes, or see if he looked her way, but she could feel his eyes on her. "The life of a mortal is like a drop in the ocean for the gods. A mortal is born, grows old, and dies. While a god is bound by his duty, and lives to see a thousand mortals live and die. Could you live like that?"

"I.." She hesitated, then looked down into the flames. "I don't know."

"Then why continue? Why put yourself and your family through such a long journey when you don't even know what you want?"

Applejack sent him an angry glare. "I need to see him, I need to know."

The stallion didn't budge. "And when you find out? If he loves you, if you love him, what will you do?"

She looked away, trying to focus on anything else than this old annoying stallion. However a part of her could not deny the doubts. She loved Thor, she knew she did, but what exactly did that mean for them? Would she stay in Asgard? Could she stay in Asgard? If so, would she be willing to leave Equestria behind? If she couldn't stay, could she keep tying herself to him? All of these thoughts and scenarios made her head spin, and all she wanted to do was lay down and sleep.

Finally she let out a sigh and looked at him again. "I don't know what I'll do. I only know I need to see him, I need to find out what is the right path for me. I can't find out by staying in Ponyville."

The old stallion hummed thoughtfully. "Then your journey must continue. You must cross the Bifrost bridge, and reach the home of the gods. Only then will you find the answers you seek."

Applejack looked up at him. "Who are you?"

He still kept looking into the fire, but he did smile slightly. "I go by many names, but you can call me Fjǫlnir."

"Fjǫlnir?" She repeated, never hearing of such a name before. "Why are you here?"

"I am here because you are here." He simply said. "But now our encounter must come to an end, the road is long, and you do not have time to waste."

"What do you mean?"

Fjǫlnir poked the fire again, and this time the flames seemed to grow stronger, rising up and consuming the wood within moments. "You must follow your roots back to the halls of your ancestors." The flames started to die, and the darkness started to close in around them.

Applejack rose up. "Wait! What do you mean?! Where do I look?!"

"It is time to wake up.. Wake up." His voice grew fainter, and the darkness closed in.


"Wake up.. Wake up. Applejack, wake up."


"Huh?!" Applejack's eyes shot open, although she quickly shut them again as the bright morning almost blinded her. Apple Bloom was standing above her, smiling relieved. "Apple Bloom?" Applejack groaned, shielding her eyes with her hoof as she looked.

"You worried us." Apple Bloom said, helping her up.

"Wha? But, the ship?" As she sat up, she saw they were on a sandy beach. Unlike the one they had arrived at, which was stony and gray. This one was sunny, sandy, and warm. The sea was so blue and clear, unlike the cold gray water they had gotten used to. "Where are we?"

"In Midgard." Answered a raspy voice. As her eyes got used to the bright sunny day, Applejack looked over and saw Rainbow Dash trotting towards them. "Hey, how are you?"

Applejack sent her friend a tired smile. "I'll live. What happened to the ship?"

Rainbow shrugged. "Honestly we're not sure. Mac was the first one to wake up, and he says he saw Vragi vanish in the horizon."

"So he left us here?" Asked Applejack. "Wait, how do you know this is Midgard?"

Rainbow smirked a little. "Well, where else would he leave us?"

Apple Bloom giggled. "That, and Big Mac asked the two ponies over there."


Applejack looked behind Rainbow, and just as Apple Bloom had said, Big Mac was talking to two ponies. They looked friendly, a stallion and a mare, both of them carrying fishing poles. It was a bit of a strange sight, after having seen grand ships filled with the souls of almost all creatures, and crossing the vast sea dividing the worlds, it almost made Applejack laugh to see such a normal thing.

"They will take us into town," continued Rainbow. "It's not far from here."

"Right," sighed Applejack and stood. Her legs wobbled a bit, and she found herself swaying.

Rainbow hurried to one side and supported her. "Wow there, take it easy, you just woke up."

"Where's Fjǫlnir?" Applejack asked, feeling slightly dazed.


"The old stallion with the floppy hat and big beard."

Apple Bloom looked at Rainbow, who looked back at her with the same confused look. "Applejack, no one else has been here." Said Apple Bloom. "Maybe you were dreaming?"

"Probably about Starswirl." Rainbow Dash chuckled. "You're exhausted, come on, let's head to town."

Applejack nodded absently. Her eyes moved around the beach, hoping to see some evidence of the fire she had warmed herself at, or anything that could suggest she had been up and talking to somepony. However she saw nothing other than two ravens sitting in a tree.

As they approached Mac and the two ponies, the large stallion turned to them and smiled relieved. "Glad to see you're okay."

Applejack chuckled. "You too."

Mac chuckled back, and then turned to the two ponies. "This is Spring, and this is his wife Lily."

The two ponies nodded. Lily was a cream coated earth pony with a white mane and tail. "Your brother told us you were lost and slept out here tonight." Applejack eyed her brother. It wasn't a lie, they had no idea where they were, or where to go, and they had slept on the beach. "We can take you back to town."

The stallion nodded. He was a light blue unicorn with a black and blue mane. "We'll show you to the local inn. The owner is a good friend of ours, I'm sure he'll help you."

"Thank you kindly." Smiled Applejack.

The group started to move along the beach. What came after the beach looked to be grassy plains, and in the distance some forest. Everything around them was so clear, so healthy, so beautiful. The air itself felt fresher in a way, kind almost like when Applejack found herself in the middle of the orchard back home.

It seemed so much more alive than what they had seen when they arrived, almost bright. They continued to trot for maybe twenty minutes, when they could see the first cottages appear from around a hill. As they came around, a town came into view. The moved up from the beach itself and up on more solid ground, a small dirt road leading directly to the town.

The town was made up of cottages, straw roofs, thick wooden beams, logs, planks and stone. It was smaller than Ponyville, but it almost felt the same. Ponies moving around, going about their daily business. Stalls spread out here and there, merchants calling out for potential customers.

Near the beach were several long wooden jetties that stretched out into deeper waters. Along those jetties were several boats of varying sizes, secured to thick poles with rope. Some ponies were sitting on the jetties, some were preparing their boats, while others were already heading out.

There were foals jumping into the water, splashing their friends, while others played in the streets or helped their parents with the stalls. Something that quickly stuck out was that they could spot no old ponies, nopony who looked as old and thin as Granny Smith had been in her last years. There were elderly ponies, but in a more dignified way, like they could still handle themselves quite well. Ponies seemed to be either very young, in their prime, or gracefully old.

The couple took them down one of the streets, and moved towards a door with a sign hanging over it. Applejack looked up at the sign, and saw a golden apple painted on it. Under it was written with golden letters, The Golden Apple. Already before the three Apple siblings approached the door, a familiar aroma caught their attention.

Apple Bloom stopped, sniffing the air. "Is that..?"

Big Mac nodded, sniffing as well. "I think so."

Applejack's stomach growled. "Apple pie."

The door opened, and the wall of aromas hit them. The smells of familiar foods and pastries, it took them right back to Granny's kitchen. The group stepped inside into a large room, filled with tables and chairs. At the far end of the room was a big fireplace, although it wasn't burning at the moment. To the right side of the room was a bar, and a side door leading into another room. On the left side of the room was a stairway leading to the floor above.

The great room was pretty much empty, except for a couple of ponies scattered around. Suddenly a voice boomed from the right. "Spring! Lily! What brings you two around this early in the morning?" A stallion as big as Mac was standing by the door next to the bar, a large grin plastered onto his face. His coat was golden, and his mane blonde, just like his beard. "And who are your friends?"

The two ponies who had escorted them trotted closer, gesturing to the rest that they should follow. "Good morning, Pippin," said Lily. "Our friends here are a bit lost, and they slept on the beach. I think they could use a place to rest just until they have gotten back on their hooves."

The large stallion, known as Pippin, nodded. "Say no more, I'll get some food in ya, and I'll find you some rooms." He then pointed at Mac. "You there, you look big and strong. You can help me out as payment for your lodgings."

Mac nodded, taken aback a bit, but didn't complain. "Eeyup."

"Good, now why don't you all find a table. Me and my wife will fix you right up." Pippin grinned, reaching out and patted Apple Bloom on the head. They were just about to do as he said when he paused for a moment. "Wait," he suddenly said. "Are you from the Apple family?" He gestured to their cutie marks.

The three apple siblings looked at each other, then back at him, nodding. Pippin grinned. "Well I’ll be, I had no idea I had family in town!" He laughed, then without warning pulled all three of them into a massive bear hug. "It is good to see you!" Pippin grinned, then looked at Rainbow. "And what about you?"

Rainbow took a step back. "Oh, well, I'm with him." She said and pointed at Mac.

Pippin barked out another laugh, then released the three siblings. "You like them with feathers then?" He teased Mac, who turned even redder. "If you find the spot right between their wings, she will sing like a-"

"Pippin Apple!!" A voice suddenly interrupted. A mare with a blue coat and blonde mane trotted out from the door with a stern look about her. "You have been listening to gossip again, haven't ya?"

Pippin shrank for a moment. "No, my little buttercup.." He chuckled. "I would like you to meet my wife, Lucy Glow."

Lucy trotted up to them, eying the four ponies. "Well howdy, and welcome to The Golden Apple." She eyed her husband. "They're family?"

Pippin nodded. "I know an apple when I see one!"

"Well," Lucy mumbled, then eyed them again. "They don't look from around here. Something feels different about them."

Applejack looked at her brother, then Rainbow Dash. They had no idea where to go, and if they went off on their own, there was no telling how long they were going to be searching. Instead Applejack decided to take a chance, she didn't know if it would be a good idea to tell them the truth, but if they were family, they would be able to figure out a lie sooner or later.

"Well, that's because we're not." Applejack said, looking back at them.

"Then where are you from?" Asked Pippin.

"Well, it's a long story." Applejack admitted, feeling more tired than before.

Spring and Lily nodded. "Well, we should get going. Looks like you have a lot to talk about." Said Spring, turning to the door with his wife. "We'll see you tonight!"

Pippin and Lucy both said their goodbyes to their friends, and turned their attention back to the group. "Before you begin," said Lucy. "We can at least fix you some breakfast. You all look like you haven't had a proper meal for days."

"Thank you," said Rainbow, feeling a wave of relief coming over her.

In true Apple family tradition, the table was filled up with all sorts of dishes. This was no mere breakfast, this was the Apple hospitality breakfast with no expense spared. Applejack hadn't realized how hungry she was, and the same went for her siblings and Rainbow Dash.

It was only about 45 minutes later that they had slowed down enough to talk about it. Letting her companions go on, Applejack started to explain. "If I'm being honest, I'm not sure where to start."

"Try from the beginning, hon." Lucy said, sitting next to Pippin.

And so Applejack did, or at least the basics. She told them about how Thor had landed in their world, how his memory was lost, and how he stayed with them. She told him how close they got to him, and how he defended him from three Jotnars when they showed up to hunt him down. It was hard to avoid the topic of her becoming the lover of the thunder god himself, and despite speaking the truth, she could see that neither Pippin or Lucy had been prepared for that kind of story.

She continued to talk a little bit about how much she had missed him, and that now that she had the chance that she wanted to see him again. "And so we ended up here in your world." She finished, looking at them both as if expecting them to yell and throw them out.

Instead they just sat there, Lucy narrowing her eyes as she studied Applejack. "Well I be, have you really met the god of thunder?" All four nodded, and Lucy leaned back. "Well call me crazy, I believe you."

Pippin finally managed to close his shocked open mouth, looked at his wife startled, then back at Applejack. "So you are from the living world?" They nodded again. "Well, no wonder you look so different. You still have your mortal bodies."

Apple Bloom looked up. "What do you mean, mister Pippin?"

Pippin chuckled. "You don't need to call me mister," he said and patted her again. "But what I mean is, you all arrived here in your mortal bodies, you didn't die, right?" They shook their heads. "We all arrive here as souls, nobody. How to explain it, we have this energy around us you see."

Applejack nodded. "You mean the way you almost glow?"

Pippin nodded. "Exactly, it is faint, but it is there."

"And we don't have that." Mac finished.

"Exactly," Lucy said. "You kinda stand out."

"Wait, is that why ponies look so, I don't know, young?" Rainbow asked, putting down her mug of apple cider.

Lucy nodded. "Every soul arrives here as they see themselves, all in their prime. So ponies who died during old age will arrive here looking younger, but still with the beauty and graze of age, you could say."

Pippin grinned, scratching the back of his head. "It is kind of hard to explain. Some foals arrive as they are, finding their families here in Midgard. Other foals are reborn in the mortal world, while others are reborn here in Midgard."

Apple Bloom frowned. "So Granny Smith could be here," she suddenly said, looking up at her siblings. "And Ma and Pa."

Apple and Big Mac looked back at their sister, both startled. How come they had not thought about this themselves?? It seemed so silly that it hadn't crossed their minds. Of course their parents would be here, of course Granny would be too. If this was the afterlife, then surely they had to be here somewhere.

Lucy and Pippin looked at one another, a concerned look about them as they looked back at them. "You lost your family?" Pippin asked.

Applejack nodded. "Years ago, we were raised by our grandma. She passed away a year ago."

"I'm so sorry to hear that," said Lucy. "But your sister is right. If they have passed away, then they should be here."

"Are they in town?" Apple Bloom asked hopefully.

Lucy shook her head. "I'm sorry, hon. We are the only ones from the Apple family living in this town."

Pippin thought for a moment, then looked at his wife. "They could go to Apple Hall, if anypony knows where their parents are, it's them."

Lucy shook her head. "They can't waste time looking around Midgard if they are to reach the gods."

"But Apple Hall is on the way to the mountain, it wouldn't hurt." Pippin said back, frowning.

"Uhm, excuse me," said Big Mac. "What is Apple Hall?"

They both looked at him, then at the rest of their group. Lucy sighed. "I'm sorry, that was rude of us. Apple Hall is a massive orchard in the north. It is a place where all from the Apple Clan can gather."

Their mouths hung open as she explained. "Do we have a place like this?" Applejack asked.

"Some of the larger families do," answered Pippin. "We Apples gathered and built that place hundreds of years ago. We ship apples all over Midgard. They know where every member of the Apple family resides."

"But," interjected Lucy. "This would not be made for the living, you should not linger here for too long. You can't waste time traveling Midgard in search of your parents, you might not have time."

"Wait, what will happen if we stay too long?"

Again, Lucy and Pippin exchanged glances. "Well, you die."

A heavy silence filled the large room. After a while, Lucy continued. "You will be stuck here, and if you do, you won't be able to go home, or to Asgard, you will be here forever."

Applejack frowned. "How long do we have?"

Lucy quickly waved her hoof, smiling. "Oh, you don't have to worry! It won't happen for quite a while, but what I am saying is if your parents and your granny are far away, you may not have the time to go to Asgard, or home."

The tension vanished a little. "So how long then?"

Pippin thought about it. "Well it has been a long time since any mortals came to Midgard, long before our time here. I think you have about two weeks. Plenty of time to get to Apple Hall and the mountain of the heavens, but Lucy is right. It will be too short a time to have you go explore all around Midgard."

Applejack let out a long tired sigh. The day seemed to have barely begun, and in that time it seemed so much had happened. Lucy picked up on her thoughts, and smiled. "Listen, how about your four get some proper rest. I can fix you up in a bath, and then you should sleep. We will have plenty to talk about later."

Rainbow Dash could have kissed them both. "That sounds amazing," she admitted, stretching a bit. "I feel stiff all over."

"No wonder if you slept on the beach." Chuckled Lucy and got up. "Come, I'll show you to your rooms, and afterwards I get you all a nice hot bath ready."

To Applejack and the others, nothing seemed more inviting right now than a hot bath, and a soft bed. Without a word, they all just accepted their hospitality. There was a lot to process, and right now Applejack couldn't keep her thoughts straight. The realization that her parents were here along with Granny should have occurred to her much earlier, but it simply hadn't. It was like it was only now sinking in that she was in another world, in what they considered to be the afterlife. She had so many questions, and whenever she felt she got an answer to one, three more would pop up in its place.

For now all her worries could wait, she simply did not have the energy to go over it. She, Rainbow and Apple Bloom went into a large side room, where Lucy had prepared a very large wooden bathtub. It was filled to the brim with warm water, and the whole room felt like a sauna.

As the three of them slipped into water, they all let out a long, relieved sigh. To sink into the warm water, feeling it wash away the remains of the sea stuck in their coats. It was pure heaven, and for the first three minutes, they did nothing but relax. Mac wasn't in there with them, he had his own bath in the room next to theirs. If the wooden tub was as big as theirs, he could almost go for a mini swim.

Rainbow dunked her head under the water for a moment, coming up after a few seconds with a large smile. "Ahhhh, much better.. I'd forgotten what a proper bath feels like."

Apple Bloom giggled, letting herself float in the large tub. "It's so big."

The three laughed, and soon enough they started to clean their manes, and help each other scrub their backs. As Applejack helped her sister, Rainbow looked over at them. "So what's the plan now?"

Applejack eyed her friend, then sighed. "As much as I want to find our folks, I don't want to risk getting side tracked, not if we risk getting stuck here."

"But if you can see them, if you have time, would you?" Rainbow pushed.

Applejack didn't hesitate. "Of course I would. However if they are too far away from us, then we shouldn't risk it. I feel bad for getting you all here, to go through that crossing. I won't let you all be stranded here."

Rainbow chuckled. "I appreciate it.."


"What is it, Apple Bloom?"

The filly hesitated, moving her hoof around in the warm water as she considered her words. "Do you think they would remember me? Ma and Pa?"

Applejack frowned, Rainbow did the same, but kept out of it. "Of course they would, Apple Bloom." She reached out, wrapped her hooves around the filly and pulled her into a big sister embrace. Apple Bloom didn't answer, she just hugged her sister back tightly.

The rest of their day was mostly spent in their rooms sleeping. As interesting as this world was, they all felt exhausted and broken. Through most of the day they slept, only getting up once in a while to get something to drink, which their family gladly provided them.

However by evening the place seemed to get more lively, and the large main room they had sat in this morning filled up with ponies that just came through, or just wanted a drink. The noise didn't bother them, and as Applejack left her and Apple Bloom's room, she went downstairs to get something to drink.

She made her way through the crowd towards the bar, and to her surprise she found her older brother sitting there. Without a word of greeting, she trotted up and sat down beside him. Mac still looked tired, but otherwise okay. In front of him he had a wooden mug filled with what Applejack could see was apple cider.

"Is it any good here?" She asked.

"Eeyup," he replied, taking a swig of his mug. "Just like we make it."

She smiled, looked over at Pippin who worked behind the bar. When their eyes met, he knew exactly what she wanted, and he brought her mug. She thanked him, and took a sip. She let out a short laugh. It really tasted like the cider they made back home, it was almost uncanny.

"So what do we do now, Applejack?" Asked her brother. "We can't stay here forever."

He was thinking the same thing she was. Although she knew her brother did not blame her, she still felt guilty for bringing them all here. "We have to find this bridge that will take us to Asgard." She thought back at the dream she had before they woke up in this world. She thought back on what Fjǫlnir had said. Follow her roots back to the halls of her ancestors. She bit her lip, not sure if she was crazy or not, but they had very little else to go on. "We should go to Apple Hall."

Mac looked at her with a raised eyebrow. "Are you sure?"

She nodded. "Pippin said something about a mountain of the heavens, and that Apple Hall is on the way anyway. Perhaps the Bifrost bridge is there."

"Oh it's there alright," said Pippin who'd overheard their conversation. "Listen, if you really are trying to get to Asgard, then you need to go to that mountain. It's the highest known point in Midgard. It is not always there, but it is the most frequent place for the bridge to appear."

Applejack and Mac exchanged glances, and then looked back at him. "What do you mean appear?"

Pippin grinned. "You didn't know? The bridge is a rainbow, you can walk across it if the gods wills it, and once over, you should be in Asgard. At least, that's what the stories say."

Mac frowned. "Has anyone done it before?"

"Sure they have, but the dead are not allowed to cross it. Mortals used to do it way back when Equestria still believed in them." He shrugged. "They should know more about it at the family estate. I could take you there if you want."

"Excuse me?" Lucy said as she approached the bar with a tray. "Pippin Apple, will you please think before you open that big mouth of yours." She said and rolled her eyes. "Don't forget we have an Inn to run."

Pippin grinned at his wife. "We both know you can take care of this place blindfolded. Besides, would you rather I stayed behind and tended the Inn while you showed them to Apple Hall?"

Lucy adopted a stern expression, and her lips pressed into a thin line. "Point taken," she sighed. "Alright, but only because they're family."

"Well then, what do you say?"

Applejack looked from him to his wife and back again. "If it is no trouble."

Lucy shook her head. "None at all. This world is bigger than you could imagine, and if you are heading out, I would sleep easier knowing my husband is out there with you. He will get you to Apple Hall safely." Then her expression turned stern, and her eyes moved to her husband. "That said, I expect you to head straight home. I know you Pippin Apple, no surprise visits to your cousins and then show up a week later stinking of rotten apples and cider." She turned with a huff, and returned to her work.

Pippin chuckled. "She acts stern, but she loves me. Silly mare.." He let out a dreamy sigh and then smiled at Applejack and Mac. "Well then, we agree. Tomorrow morning I shall take you to Apple Hall! The home of our family, the hall of the Apple Clan."