A previously untold Tale
The Battle for Asgard
For long millennia the great powers of the Multiverse, the cosmic entities, the gods, and others pondered what might happen if the greatest among them all were to clash. They wondered whether the Multiverse itself might survive a clash between the great Galactus and Allfather Odin.
History has it that in our reality these two true titans never met, yet there are other realities. As close to ours and at the same time more distant than the wildest imaginings. Nor should we ever presume that our own reality is somehow the most important.
In one of these realities, at a time when both titans were a little younger, the devourer of worlds did indeed come a calling on the Allfathers door step.
Yet Asgard is more than Odin and Galactus did not come alone.
The high place of Hlidskalf
Moving at the speed of thought the silver form streaked in high orbit around the Earth and returned whence it came in less than the blink of an eye.
Even so, it was not fast enough to escape the attention of Lord Odin, standing with his young adult, warrior son, in the place from which he can see all things.
Odin: "The Herald of Galactus has discovered Earth; we must presume his master will follow."
Thor: "The earth is under our protection father; surely he would not willingly challenge the power of Asgard."
Odin: "We must never underestimate Galactus my son."
Some time later – still at Hlidskalf
Odin, Thor and the Grand Vizier watch the approach of the worldship of Galactus, still several light years distant, with deepening apprehension. They are even briefly able to see inside the great vessel.
Grand Vizier: " He comes then my Lord, there can no longer be any doubt, the event we have all long feared is now almost upon us "
Odin: "Aye Vizier, and as you see, he doth not come alone."
Grand Vizier (shuddering): "The herald we would expect, but that abomination?"
Grand Vizier: "His power rivals yours my lord; can you stop him and prevent the destruction of Earth and Asgard?"
Odin: "In all truth I do not know, never before have I faced his like."
Deep Space – the Worldship of Galactus – several light years from Earth and Asgard
The gleaming silvery form of Galactus herald, the former Norrin Radd, raced toward Asgard at many times the speed of light.
Lagging not far behind came Galactus himself ensconced within his monstrous star ship, a law unto himself and totally unassailable. If this were not bad enough he was, for reasons unknown, accompanied by his first creation Tyrant.
Suddenly the Silver Surfer's speed slowed almost to a halt and the Worldship did likewise, both slowed by an unseen force.
A massive, if temporary, demonstration of the OdinPower. A huge audio-visual image of Odin, with Thor in the background, appeared before them.
Odin (audio-visual image): "What do you here Mighty Galactus? what business have you on course for Earth and golden Asgard?"
The world devourer left his ship to engage the image of Odin.
Galactus: "I do that which I must, great Odin, nor am I accustomed to having my actions questioned." "What I am, my purpose, the basis for my existence in the Multiverse, is already known to you."
Odin: "This is my first and my final warning to you Galactus cease from your present course and seek sustenance elsewhere or you shall feel the full force of the Odinpower."
Odin (continuing): "You could have chosen any world yet you come to Earth and Asgard and challenge me, I who am the will and the way and the only power capable of stopping you, truly your actions are incomprehensible to me!"
An unimpressed Galactus chose not to continue the communication and the audio-visual image of Odin disappeared.
Galactus and the Silver Surfer joined a similarly unimpressed Tyrant within the worldship.
Tyrant: "Odin is nothing but a blustering blowhard and a buffoon, his son still young and inexperienced, and Asgard and the pitiful world they protect, weak and ripe for the taking." "They have no true conception of the power they face."
Silver Surfer: "Should you reconsider Galactus? the OdinPower is spoken of in whispers in every corner of the cosmos and cannot be take lightly, and there are a multitude of other worlds "
Galactus: "I will allow none to dictate to me, Surfer; the godly energies of Asgard will satiate me for a long time. I need not know the hunger again for a millennium. This will be Asgard's gift to me. As to Odin, a clash between us was inevitable."
Galactus: "One more thing Surfer, I am augmenting your power cosmic to maximum level until Asgard falls!"
For the remainder of his journey to Earth and Asgard, Galactus had the defensive screens of his worldship at full capacity along with the ships detection devices focussing on Asgard for whatever attack Odin might launch.
While the path of the ship was monitored by Odin and was followed by Loki in astral form no other action was taken until the great ship's arrival. On route Galactus lashed out more than once at the astral form of Loki which was nothing more than an irritation to him. Loki finally retreated before Galactus could destroy his astral form.
Odin, the Grand Vizier and Thor, now joined by Lady Sif, Balder and the Warriors Three continued to monitor the approach of Galactus.
Odin: "Ready your hammer my son, in the place that is not a place, and prepare on my word, for the godblast you have tested, against Galactus or Tyrant". "Spare them not, let them feel your full might !"
Odin: "Balder, prepare the Destroyer armour and inhabit it and stand ready to receive the life forces of all other Asgardians should this be necessary"
Thor: "What of great Surtur my liege ? and Ymir, Hela and Karnilla – where stand they in this ? "
Odin " Alas, my son if Galactus doth only confine his efforts to Earth and Asgard proper, they will likely view him as an ally." "Yet it will be different if Galactus moves against all of the nine worlds." "For now, they do sit upon the fence as those of Midgard might say "
Lady Sif: " Milord, I hesitate to broach the matter, but if all else fails, how will you protect your children ? "
Odin: "If we look like failing, I will transport all living beings of Earth and Asgard, to another dimension. If I can no longer do this, Lord Zeus, while he will not join us in battle, will do it for me."
Thor: " Father you have allowed Galactus to approach close to Asgard, even if he is defeated there will surely be great damage? "
Odin "Attend my words all, for now am I to use a great defensive weapon, knowledge of which, I have held back from you. Yonder within the Great Hall stands the Shield of Odin,while it doth presently take the form of a physical shield, it is far, far more than that. The shield can take the form of a great force field large enough to protect all Asgard, at least for a time."
Grand Vizier: " All is in readiness then Milord Odin, there be no more that we can do"
Odin: "Just one more thing Vizier, the OdinAxe must be retrieved from the bowels of Asgard!"
Galactus Worldship arrived shortly thereafter and while staying many thousands of kilometre above Asgard City, it still loomed monstrously and menacingly large.
While such an arrival would normally cause great panic among a population the Asgardians were a hardy race and were angered more than cowed. They were confident in themselves that Odin would not allow the destruction of Asgard.
Many manned the city's various defences such as the mystical and electronic cannon dotted around various fortifications, although this was only a token gesture. Still more readied themselves for the possibility that Odin might summon their life energies to join Balder in the Destroyer construct.
Galactus, Tyrant, and the Surfer left the Worldship, descending too then levitating high above Asgard City. Odin mystically enhanced his own size to match Galactus and levitated forth to meet him. Alone among the city's defenders Galactus realised he could not locate the mighty Thor.
Galactus: "Surfer, I cannot locate the son of Odin, find him for me!"
With that the two great titans, Mighty Odin Allfather of Asgard and Great Galactus Devourer of Worlds came physically face to face. For a moment it seemed that the entire multiverse held its breath. Even Tyrant.
Odin: " It is not too late even now, great Galactus, for you to withdraw from Asgard, there are none who will think less of you for it"
Galactus: "I will, mighty Odin, I am here and I will wait no longer. You have made grand preparations to defend your realm but in the end they will prove to be useless"
Odin (telepathically): "Thor, Balder, strike at Tyrant now!"
From the place that both is and is not part of Asgard, where even Galactus could not detect him, Thor the mighty, as one with the hammer supreme unleashed a torrential outburst of pure Asgardian energy.
The Silver Surfer striving to locate Thor was at the edge of the godblast that was not meant for him and despite his augmented might was blasted from the skies of Asgard either dead or severely injured.
Tyrant raised what passed as an arm in defiance of the godblast as his own personal force shields groaned.
Yet even as the miscreant was forced back to the worldship he struck out multiple energy blasts at the locations of the physical bodies of the life forces that occupied the destroyer killing some. How had he known where they were?
It was sufficient to confuse and delay the Balder (and other Asgardians) Destroyer attack.
At that self same moment as Tyrant recoiled from the godblast of Thor, Odin and Galactus came to grips. Energies Asgardian and cosmic, dancing and writhing and even intermingling across the full length and breadth of their huge forms and for hundreds of metres around them. The opposing energies densest and strongest around their balled fists.
Odin: "Have at thee then Galactus, know that you shall not find the Lord of Asgard wanting"
As Odin pulled the white hot OdinAxe from his back and Galactus moved to take it from the Asgardian grasp.
Odin: "I gave you every opportunity to withdraw and you would have none of it, now face the consequences of defying the Allfather!"
Galactus: "What you say or do now Odin matters not at all!, even as I restrain you Tyrant will destroy Asgard."
Yet from the Allfathers perspective with Tyrant retreating into the Worldship from the godblast of Thor this looked no more than a vainglorious boast.
Yet in the next moment the two titans were flying though space and time far beyond Asgard, locked together as they continued to struggle for the OdinAxe. Odin seemed unable to break Galactus grip and the world destroyer seemed equally unable to wrest the axe from Lord of Asgard. Mystical energies competed with the power cosmic and at times seemed to almost merge with and become one with the power cosmic. To any capable of observing them they must have seemed like a blazing star hurtling through the heavens except that this "star" knew no constraints as to distance and time nor even as to inter-dimensional travel.
It has been said that Odin weakens the longer he might be away from Asgard and such must have been a concern for Thor as he saw his father disappear. Yet just one of Odin's reasons for long ago creating the OdinAxe was that it would always enable him to draw on those nearly inexhaustible reservoirs of Asgardian energy wherever he might be in the Multiverse. Thus as Galactus drew as required from various energy sources that they passed near so Odin in turn drew via the OdinAxe on the vast reservoirs of Asgardian energy that exist in and around Asgard and in certain other places.
At one point the path of the two titans and the axe led into the very core of Balderon largest of all the black holes of the Multiverse where they slowed under the most immense naturally occurring gravitational pull in existence. In this place Galactus released his grip on the axe and left the immediate vicinity of the black hole curious to see if Odin could escape it.
Odin: "Did you think one such as I could be defeated so easily, so cheaply, Galactus?"
Again Galactus grasped the Axe clearly thinking that wresting it from Odin was the key to defeating the Father of Asgard. Their journey through space and time continued.
There is a phenomenon not often encountered in the Multiverse. It is similar to a black hole but it's pull extends across all known dimensions. Anything held in its super gravitational pull is drawn into it and if it survives at all is thrown out into the ethereal void beyond the Multiverse. No one has as yet provided a name for this perhaps the greatest of all the Multiverse's natural phenomena since from the reference point of any particular dimension it seems only like an ordinary black hole.
Whether unknowingly or otherwise Odin and Galactus sped directly into one such. The forces acting upon them to expel them from the Multiverse were so great that for the merest instant they were forced to co-operate in order to escape those forces. It was a sobering experience for them both.
Both of the titans were developing a grudging respect for one another.
Odin: "I see that they do not call you the great Galactus without good reason."
Galactus: "Nor are you referred to as Odin the Almighty without justification worthy one."
At some point in their continuing journey Galactus and Odin began probing then actually entering each others mindscapes raising their struggle to a different level. The struggle moved from one mindscape to another. If Galactus found Odin's mindscape unusual Odin found the mindscape of Galactus utterly alien and difficult to deal with.
The struggle within the mindscapes seemed very physical in nature. Odin swung with the OdinAxe and though Galactus sought to avoid it the fearsome axe seemed to effortlessly rip not only through any personal force fields but also to rip away chest armour. When Galactus was in Odin's mindscape he was on the offensive and in his own he was on the defensive.
At one point Odin shouldered the OdinAxe and fists again balled and coruscating with energy he traded blows with Galactus for what seemed like all Eternity. The pain and tiredness both felt from the mental confrontation seemed every bit as real as if it were a purely physical contest. Eventually with Galactus on the attack in Odin's mindscape the Lord of Asgard landed a blow of such staggering might that Galactus found himself back in his own mindscape.
The battle continued to rage. Odin with his hands about the devourer's throat and Galactus responding with lancing beams of the power cosmic directly from his eyes into Odin's face.
Exactly when the conflict of the minds ceased and gave way to a purely physical confrontation seemed unclear. However at some point it became evident to both combatants that not only had their battle returned to the physical level but that their long journey had ceased.
They were back above Asgard city.
They moved apart from each other, both looking to gain some small respite.
While the two titans had been gone the fate of Asgard had rested with Thor and the Balder Destroyer.
Thor had forced Tyrant back into the worldship and the swathes of god force had damaged even the great ship. Yet the godblast had run it's course and Tyrant re-emerged from the ship of Galactus. His face leering with raw hatred.
Tyrant: "Are you done now little one?, has your small tirade run it's course?"
The mighty Thor rotated mjolnir and flew up at Tyrant intending to fell him with a flurry of hammer blows. Yet Tyrant's claws moving with unexpectedly frightening speed raked Thors battle armour penetrating it and ripping into dense Asgardian flesh and bone. Worse the claws contained both vicious alien toxins and searing alien energies.
Badly hurt Thor plummeted to the city below though he did not cry out. He would not give tyrant that satisfaction.
Yet the very land of Asgard below slowed the thunders descent and as he landed it both healed him and gave its power up to him even before he invoked it.
Tyrant descended to Earth his claws dripping with venomous physical and energy poisons.
Tyrant: "You still live little one, let us see how many alien toxins your small distasteful blood bag body can absorb!" Yet in a part of his mind the thing of evil knew that something was not right.
The mighty Thor mystically increasing his size to that of Tyrant drew even more energy and power from the very rocks and soil of Asgard funnelling it though his hammer and striking against Tyrant.
At that precise moment the Balder (and other Asgardian) Destroyer, energies still building atop its visor, finally overcome the confusion and disorientation of Tyrant's attack on its members physical bodies.
The Destroyers greatest weapon, its disintegration beam hit Tyrant full on just as Thor channelled almost all the energies of the land of Asgard at the same target.
It is said that the death screams of Tyrant could be heard in all of the nine worlds and even beyond.
By the time Galactus and Odin returned to Asgard, the world devourer's partner and creation was dead and his herald was at best injured and off the field of battle.
Galactus took in the overall situation:
Odin, with the white hot OdinAxe held high was preparing to launch a skyfather level godblast at him through the axe while Thor from below readied himself for a similar effort using mighty mjolnir. To add to this the Destroyer construct, energies building again atop its disintegration visor have levitated up to his level.
Near exhaustion the great Galactus, destroyer of worlds, third force of the Universe faced total annihilation.
Galactus looked for the option of retreat to his partially damaged worldship and then looked at Odin. The titan saw from the look of steel in Odin's eye that the Allfather would not allow of it. Something had hardened in the mind of Asgard's Lord and Odin's intent was clear. That Galactus would perish here today along with his abominable creation
Then Galactus managed a smile as he saw his fellow siblings materialise at a distance. Great Eternity and Mistress Death.
Still the godblast energies continued to form and still the disintegration energies built atop the Destroyers visor. Even Eternity could not save him.
Odin: "After what you have attempted this day Galactus, did you think I would allow your siblings to save you?"
Galactus: "I will not beg for mercy, Almighty One, such is not the way of Galactus, do what you must, and do it now!"
Yet even as he mouthed the words Galactus drew forth the ultimate nullifier that had been upon his person all through the battle with Odin. He held it high and threatening.
No further words were exchanged between the parties yet the look of disgust upon the faces of Odin and Thor said it all.
Galactus retreated to his worldship then left Asgard without delay. Though exhausted and humiliated he would at least live to fight another day.
That was all that mattered he kept telling himself. He had survived.
Both Odin and Thor knew that he would never come this way again.