Stina – A Story by VikingGirl26 (Chapter 2)

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Before I start, I do want to say that I will not be posting until Next year. I am only gonna post 2 more posts for December.

This chapter and an article on St Lucia Day (I am working on my research, it should come between the 10th and 14th of December)


I never thought I would ever see Henrik again. Henrik seems like life is too complicated for him, he has been involved in a lot of trouble, even though this year he officially became an adult, which is actually interesting.

Henrik, who recently arrived from Oslo for an upper education program, ran up to me and hugged me. 

Unlike Åsa, Henrik is a really big troublemaker. Åsa was the perfect sister, and Henrik was the annoying little brother. And I was the outcast sister.

Henrik is actually very happy he was in Norway. When he was young, he loved Norway a lot. He will always talk to his pen pal, who is a 14-year-old girl named Gunnhild.

However, she died 3 years ago due to a shipwreck, and Henrik doesn’t care about her anymore.

black and brown ship on sea during daytime

Henrik wore really basic clothes – a worn-down white long-sleeved polo shirt, with some worn-down dark green pants. He had frizzled blonde hair that made it look like he never cleaned it.

He swears he cleaned it, but the truth is he always goes to the river near our farm, stays there until dinnertime, and then blames it that one of our animals drowned. Once this trick resulted in us losing about 1,500 kroner worth of food.

Henrik’s troubles aren’t really huge, such as the time he taped everyone’s notebooks into a tree, but one of them almost landed him in prison when he ran away from home.

When I saw Erik, I wanted to talk to him about running away to Norway with him and Synne. 

Synne is very different from us. Synne was born with walking problems, AND she fell off a mountain when she was 13, so she had to wear a wooden prosthetic leg. But we still love her.

I gathered Synne, and we went to our house to talk about our plan.

“Henrik.” I ran to him, waiting for an answer.

“Yeah?” He said, bringing his luggage to the cabin.

“We need to talk about 2 things,” I told him, holding a letter from Ivar Johannsen and one from Håkan’s sister.

“Remember Håkan?” I asked him, smiling.

Henrik nodded. He found a box of cardboard letters Håkan, and Henrik sent each other when Henrik was forced to go to boarding school in Finland when he was 16.

opened envelopes


February 5, 1849

Dear Håkan Andersson

Finland is actually great

  • Henrik Nordberg Håkansen

March 20, 1849

Dear Henrik Nordberg Håkansen

What is your favorite thing about Finland

  • Håkan Andersson

“Håkan died,” I told him, sounding sad.

Henrik was actually crying. He decided to go to Halwya’s room.

Hawlya left a note in her room, saying that all of Håkan’s things had been given away to Øyonn, a Norwegian records manager. 

A lot of people don’t like Øyonn. One time 3 years ago, Everyone got mad at her because she filed the wrong records about her twin daughters, one of whom died yesterday from some disease.

Øyonn basically manages everything in our village. Every birth, every death, and every marriage is scheduled to Øyonn. Then, those records get sent to the government.

After a few minutes, Henrik came back to the room. He talked about his college life.

“So, we adopted a kid.” He told me. I was pretty excited.

He told us that his new “daughter” is named Freyja Henriksen.

Freyja is 4 years old, and he adopted her last year. They found her outside of a river since her mom couldn’t take care of her.

Henrik and his girlfriend, Alma Eriksdóttir, took really good care of her.

“She is starting preschool next month,” he said.

After talking with Henrik, Åsa came into the door.

“Henrik, Aren’t you coming to our wedding? It is in 2 days,” she said in Swedish.
Henrik laughed. “Is this a joke?” he said, falling down.

Åsa glared at him and walked away. When she returned, she got Ivar.

“This is Ivar Johanssen,” she said, Introducing Ivar. “We are getting married in 2 days.” 

“Hei,” Ivar said. Ivar looked a lot like Henrik – tall, blonde, and with worn-down clothes.

Ivar’s family was also poor. He lived with his 3 sisters and 2 brothers in a tiny, 2-room house. His siblings ranged in age from 4 years old to 25 years old. 

a living room with a couch and a fireplace

Ivar was the 5th oldest, at 22 years old. Since Ivar’s dad is currently arrested and her mom died of sickness 2 years ago, Ivar’s oldest sister, Astrid, takes care of the whole family, including Astrid’s 3-year-old son.

“Can we be friends?” Henrik said enthusiastically. Henrik was very social and friendly. Back in elementary school, Henrik was friends with almost everyone at the school.

He was famous. But before Ivar could shake hands with Henrik and say, “Ja!” Henrik remembered something about Ivar.

“I know you!” Ivar said.

Henrik gasped. He was wordless.

“That’s true,” he said.

“You were my best friend,” Ivar replied.

The two were shocked. Both of them never knew each other. 

The two talked about a lot of things – about college, about Ivar and Åsa’s Relationship.

But then Ivar pointed at me. “Who is this girl?” he said, confused.

Henrik held my hand. “This is my younger sister, Stina,” he said. “Stina is doing ok, except she sometimes steals food from us during dinner.”

I laughed. “I mean, I can’t blame it on anyone else. You used to do that as well.” I said.

Before Ivar had to leave, He went up to Henrik and asked him a question.

“Why is your sister not in an upper education class?” He asked.

Åsa sat down. “Well, I feel like I will make my parents proud if I keep working at the farm and taking care of Stina.” She said,

Åsa then decided to work on farming. She was working very hard until the bell rang, and it was dinner time. 

During dinner, everyone came to Ivar’s house. 

wooden house near pine trees and pond coated with snow during daytime

My mom, Halwya, also came, and she is not happy with Ivar.

“So, Ivar,” she said. “My Oldest daughter, Åsa Håkansdotter Nordberg, is marrying you in 2 days?” 

Ivar looked confused. Astrid, his older sister, was holding her son and preparing the plate.

“I’m sorry, but Ivar never had a history of negative things he has done.” She said.

One of Ivar’s younger siblings, a 14-year-old girl wearing a white hair covering and dark blue overalls, was explaining to Hawlya about Ivar’s dad.

“Hello, I am Lusi.” She introduced herself in a fluent manner. “Our dad has been arrested when Ivar was 18.” 

Halwya looked confused. “What did he do?” he asked Lusi.

Lusi held a compartment of money. “He stole 20,000 kroner worth of money and ran away to Denmark,” she explained.

“Then, they found him and won’t be released until one of his children got married.”

Halwya sat down and ate her food, which was fish caught by Lusi herself; she was quiet the whole time.

Halwya is quiet and barely speaks. She sometimes talks a lot, but that only happens a few times. 

After we finished eating, we said goodbye to Ivar and his siblings, and we left;

We walked from village to village, trying to find ourselves.

aerial photography of lighted concrete buildings at night time

2 hours later, we finally arrived at our home. We were super tired, and Henrik almost threw up on the way home.

When we arrived, I sat on my bed and let the fireplace warm my hands. Åsa was gonna take a bath down the river, and Henrik was going to help Hawlya with farming.

I looked at the clock; it was only 5 pm

Great, I said to myself.

I decided to wander around the village and try to find Synne. It turns out that Synne was sitting outside the village church, sketching some of the people.

black wooden house

“Hej Synne,” I told her and sat down with her.

Synne smiled. Her smile was beautiful, especially her dark green eyes, which looked like those of the Swedish forests.

Synne waved back. “Hej Stina,” she said in a timid voice.

She decided to walk around for a while. A lot of the villagers stared at her since she only had one leg.

As we went farther, a familiar voice yelled from behind. And that voice was no other but Henrik’s voice.

“Girls, Where have you been?” He said, sounding really worried.

I smiled and told him I was just hanging out with Synne.

Later, he guided us to a different room outside our cabin. He got a candle and sat us down.

empty gray wing chair

“This was my old room,” he explained. “I did a lot of things here.” 

He sat down. 

“While Åsa was helping with farming, I heard she was gonna leave the town once she marries Ivar.”

I tried not to cry, but I did. I lived in this town for 16 years, and it is an amazing town. Yes, there are better places, but this town is a part of me, and now I have to leave Synne.

“She is also gonna force us to move as well, or else we have to live with Ivar’s family.

I couldn’t imagine living with Ivar’s siblings, especially 1 adult sibling with her own son. Before I knew it, by the time I became an adult, Astrid’s son’s kids would also live in the house, which was a 2 room cabin.

Synne also looked worried as she was fidgeting with her sweater sleeve. “What will we do?” She asked.

Henrik moved us up close to a board he had. “We are gonna run away. Again!” He said.

Synne covered her face. “Didn’t you almost land in prison when you were 12 when you were running away?” She asked him, showing him a photo of 12-year-old Henrik in a forest.

“That was younger Henrik,” he said, folding his arms. “Older Henrik knows what’s best for both of you.”

We kept talking about Henrik’s plan. But when I came home, something really terrible happened.

Åsa’s  Wedding is rescheduled, and it is gonna be tomorrow. 

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