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Wulfric Ragnarson

Birth Place: Norðvegr


Wulfric was born along the mouth of a great fjord of Norðvegr near Sandefjord as the youngest of three sons of Ragnar Gata, a land-owner along the fjords. He was originally known as Ulfríkr Ragnarson, a strong name for a third son who would be unlikely to inherit his father’s lands and would be destined to make his name elsewhere.

As the son of a minor lord he was lucky and had access to an education, comfort and tutelage in sword and shield craft, he spent his youth training to venture further from his home and skirmish with local rivals with aspirations to seek wealth and fame.

As a young man that chance would present itself when the warship Herlið would sail into the port of Tønsberg to resupply its provisions and replace crew lost on a bloody venture further north. He asked Vandrad the leader of this proud ship to join his crew to replace his fallen comrades and was accepted, he packed some belongings and travel gear, and was presented a sword by his father and bade farewell to these Northern lands, Herlið would leave bound for Írland.

Over rough seas and biting winds the warship would sail to the dark inky waters of Dyflin, a longphort surrounding a dark Pool on the eastern coast of Írland, an established but often fought over Norse settlement in the wild lands of the Gaels. This is where Wulfric and the crew of Herlið would set out to make their riches, fighting bitter skirmishes carving out a tract of land to call their own. They would build a long hall and settle the land, gaining thralls to till the land and grow crop and raiding further inland for plunder.

For many years the coffers grew fat with coin and the new settlement became a successful home, but this would not last forever, the fortunes of Wulfric and the warband would turn when the Gealic leaders Cerball mac Muirecáin, king of Leinster, and Máel Findia mac Flannacáin, king of Brega, would unite and rise against the norse settlers driving them from their lands. The warband would be forced from their settlement back to the stronghold of Dyflin.

Our Lord Vandrad and twelve mail clad heroes (I among them), all that remained of his hearth guard who had escaped; board the long-ship Herlið. Spears and arrows clashed into the deck boards, shields held high over the rowers, the Herlið pulled away from the jetty. I hear the guttural jeers of our enemies as we row away, an arrow glances from my shield, our Lord stares back towards the land, his eyes dead, his face like ashen thunder.

I stare at the smoke as flames billow high over the once beautiful city as it burns to the ground, the fortunes that the Norns were weaving were changing, we and many other Norse ships would be exiled, we would have to sail east over the cold sea to the western seaboard of Saksland, the borderlands of Bretland, Danelaw and Strathclyde.

The smoke from the fire of a dying longhport disappeared over the horizon. Our Lord turned to his men and made an oath. "I swear by all the gods that I will return to these lands, retake my lands, slaughter my enemies, and take vengeance on all those who stood against me.

And so it was that the crew would land in Coupland, land would be claimed, a new hall would be built and a great cross would be commissioned to seek favour from both the new Christian god and the old gods for future ventures.

From here Wulfric would go on to make his own travels, with coin in store and his fate now his own, for a time he would be Ulfríkr the wanderer, travelling south into the Danelaw as a sword for hire. Eventually he would gain his own small warband and created a settlement within a forest clearing amongst seven hills by the rivers Sheaf and Don not far from Dore. But when messages were sent that the great ship Herlið would sail again he would be quick to respond to his battle brothers and fulfil his oath.

It is here that Wulfric would take his new name. Originally Named Ulfríkr, he changed his name to the Anglo-Saxon wulfric to assimilate into the local community as he had claimed swathes of land to call his own in the former lands of Saxons.

In the border lands of Mercia he made a name for himself as a minor lord and warrior for hire, a norse nightmare of war with a bloodied spear catching the attention of nobility wishing to shore up the border with Danelaw, it would be here that Wulfric would be accepted as an honoured huscarl of the king.

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