Chapter 8

Of the Banded Men.

Now is it told that Styrmir and Thorarin had speech together, and Styrmir said : "Great mocking and shame have we gotten from this case."

Thorarin said: "It was but what we might have looked for: but wise men must have been busy herein."

"Yea," said Styrmir; "seest thou any way now to set matters right?"

"I know not if it may be speedily done," said Thorarin.

"Well, what is best then?" said Styrmir.

Thorarin answers : "If the charge might be laid on them that money was brought into court, that would stick."

"Yea, yea," said Styrmir. Then they went their ways home to their booths.

Now they call together to council their friends and men allied to them; and thither came, first Hermund Illugison, secondly Gellir Thordson, thirdly Egil Skulison, fourthly Jarnskeggi Einar-son, fifthly Skeggbroddi Biarnson, sixthly Thor-geir Haldorason, and Styrmir and Thorarin withal. So these eight fall a-talking together, and Styrmir and Thorarin set forth the story of the case, and where it stood now, and what a booty would be Odd's wealth, whereby all their fortunes would be plenteously amended: so they determine to band together, and all to push the case to the awarding of outlawry or self-doom, and hereto they bind themselves by oath ; and they deem that this may not be overthrown, and that none may have heart or wisdom to rise up against it. With such talk they part, and men ride home from the Thing, and at first this is kept privy.

Odd was well pleased with his journey to the Thing, and the father and son are more at one now than heretofore: so Odd abideth in peace these seasons.

But in spring-tide he met his father, and Ufeig asked for tidings; but Odd said he had heard nought, and asked in turn what was toward; Ufeig says that Styrmir and Thorarin have gathered folk and are going to Mel a-summoning: Odd asks wherefore, and Ufeig tells him all their intent. Odd answers : "It seemeth to me no such heavy matter." Ufeig says : "Well, maybe it will not be beyond thy strength."

So weareth time to the summoning-days, and then come Thorarin and Styrmir to Mel with many men; and Odd also had a great company there. They put forth their case then, and summoned Odd to the Althing, for that he had caused money to be borne into the courts unlawfully: nought else betid to tell of there, and they rode away with their company. Yet again it befell that the father and son met, and talked together, and Ufeig asked if it still seemed a thing of nought; and Odd answers : "Nay, I deem it no such heavy matter." "Otherwise it seemeth to me," saith Ufeig; "knowest thou clearly to what pass things are come?"

Odd said he knew of what had come to pass,

Ufeig said : "More will come of it, meseemeth, because six other chieftains of the greatest have joined themselves to them."

"Great strength they seem to need against me," quoth Odd.

Said Ufeig : "What will thy rede be now?"

"What," said Odd, "save to ride to the Thing and seek aid."

Ufeig answers : "It seemeth to me nought hopeful, in such a plight as things now are, to stake our honour on having the greater number of folk."

"What is to be done then?" said Odd.

Ufeig says : "My rede it is that thou array thy ship while the Thing is toward, and be ready with all thy loose goods, and have them aboard by then men ride from the Thing. And now which of thy money deemest thou gone a worser road, that which these shall take from thee, or that which I shall have?"

"Well, that is something saved out of the fire that cometh to thee," saith Odd; and therewith he giveth his father a heavy purse of silver, and they part. Odd arrays his ship, and gets men thereto: and so weareth time toward the Thing. But these plots went on privily, so that few heard thereof.