"Tell me at once who you are and how you come here. I am Beorn, the Sea King's son, and I would know."
Life flared back into the frightened and exhausted girl. "And I am Ness, daughter of a chief, and I will tell you only if I please!"
She knelt in the boat, her face only a space away from his, and they glared fiercely, anger risen in them both. Slowly the boy moved his hand to the hilt of the long knife. "I am Beorn," he said again, "the son of Anlaf the Sea King, and you will tell me now!"
The Coast of Ireland in the 9th century is the prey of Viking marauders. Young Ness has been taken captive by Beorn, on his first raiding trip with his father's band of warriors. She must accompany them as they make their way back to Denmark, and so experience the dangerous tensions and misfortunes that threaten the entire fleet. Her faith in the Christian God—ridiculed by Beorn—helps sustain her during her captivity. But Beorn grows ever prouder and disaster threatens to sweep him, and Ness, away.
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