So, I'm elbows deep in writing a little post-RotG fic when a little research on the origin of Jack Frost brought up the name Jökul Frosti.
And this popped out. Consider it a prequel or a spin-off of the main story, since the topic is raised but never addressed in the other. I'd love to hear your opinions of my reasoning!
The Evolution of Belief
Thousands of years ago, the world was different. People were different. Belief was different.
And so, those who thrived on belief, were different too.
Once Upon a Time, there existed beings who were as Gods. Some protected the humans who believed in them, others played with them for sport. All of them ruled their fragile little creators.
But, time changes all things - humans most of all. Belief faded, shifted, twisted. The Moon cast light into the darkness, stirring bravery in those who needed it. Belief in better things - better Gods - was nourished, quietly and steadily, until one day the Gods were merely spirits. Then, stories. Then, echoes.
Some sought to survive at any cost. They bent the last of their powers and became Kings of Men, rather than Gods, forgetting that even Kings pass on from life and memory alike. Having bound themselves to mortality, they died more thoroughly than any other and left behind a blood-soaked legacy perpetuated by half-human children.
Others relied on their past kindness - or neutrality - to keep them as they were. They clung to reality, reduced but never gone. They became spirits, subordinate to their creators in almost every way, no longer able to shape the world in their image. Some continued to be kind. Others grew bitter and strove to be known again, no matter the method. Most lost themselves entirely, and became little more than a flicker of awareness on the tattered outskirts of human belief.
One such being, first God, then spirit, now barely self-aware, was Kári. Heir-apparent to one of the first and greatest of Gods, worshipped by many names and neither cruel nor kind, Kári accepted that his fate was to be forgotten. One brother, Ægir, stirred the seas in rage, lashing out at the people he'd once fiercely supported, fighting to preserve his existence. Another brother, Logi, whose power over fire had long been stolen by humans, slipped away into his own flame and forever more existed only as the hunger that drove fire to consume its new masters.
But Kári… Kári chose a different path. A different battle to win. Before his power left him, before he slipped from God to Spirit to Nothing, he worked to create for himself a lasting legacy.
Kári, God of the Wind, created a son.
Known as Jökul to some, Frosti to others, the son of the Wind was born of the frozen knife edge of his Father's power and carried with him always that deadly cold. Half human and yet half not, he was feared and loved and followed and hated. He begat children, and his children begat children, each more human than the last. Too human, perhaps, as all too soon - only three hundred years after his creation, with his Father now no more than a voice on the wind - Jökul Frosti was slain by one of the rare few who could. By one of his own diluted blood.
Though his children's children quarrelled still, more human than ever before as they slaughtered each other for land and power, vengeance and honour, something of Jökul Frosti yet remained. For he, unlike his children, was only half human. He was born from the deadly cold edge of Kári's harshest winds and in that cold an imprint of him remained like a hand print in snow.
Like his father before him, what was once known became lost, with only traces of truth left to linger in the collective consciousness of humanity. Until, glacier-slow, those truths came together to form a new truth. Different from before, but no less real.
Until, a thousand years later, The Moon - which had so long ago scattered the old beliefs and brought forth new ones - found an echo of Jökul in one of his descendants - a descendant who carried joy within him and gave it freely to all he encountered. A descendant who gave his life protecting - guarding - another.
And so the Moon gathered the human and inhuman elements of what was once Jökul Frosti and bound them together again. Aided by what was once Kári (for The Wind had lost his own name in order to keep his son's) a new being of belief was born.
And Jack Frost awoke, cold as the knife edge of the wind, with a core of joy and no memories to stifle it.
And though he no longer knew The Wind, The Wind knew him.
And The Wind laughed, because of all the old Gods, only The Wind had won.