Honor is a tricky thing. It is, essentially, about respect. Are you respected, have you done stuff to be respected, have you done things that cost you the respect of others.
I hurts when that respect is not returned. It hurts when you try to be an honorable, decent person, and the person who you treated as family, who you honored and held your oaths to turns around and considers you not even worth it.
I mentioned in my post this morning that I was finally sending a list of grievances to the man I once called my brother. A man who I kept my oaths too, who I respected, and who I stood beside even as it cost me greatly. But that was okay. Honor was given, honor was supposedly returned, and even great cost is not a reason to break one’s oaths.
I gave him nine days to respond. Actually I said to reply in nine days. I wanted him to have time to think over the list, to see if our friendship, our brotherhood was worth it to him. True, the price he would have to pay was high, but then his ills to me, and more importantly Hel and Skadi were great indeed. But such is honor, when you lose it you must work twice as hard to regain that which you lost. But one can always work to regain that honor as long as you are alive.
In the end though, he responded within hours. That response was simple. “If that is how you feel, then we should part ways, farewell.”
Perhaps brother does not mean what I thought it meant. Perhaps standing beside each other on the battlefield does not mean what I thought it meant. But I had good reason to believe it meant what I thought it meant. After all, it was Thor who taught me the meaning, Hel who instructed me as to Honor, Odin on what it meant to be brotherband.
The grand irony is of course the one time I insulted him by accident…he went running to Hel and basically told mommy on me. Which left me a bit incredulous, because, well, were we not men? Could he not have come to me with his grievance, rather than run to my queen and seek to get me in trouble? Yet when I come to him with an issue of deeds, not a misunderstood word…there is no treate. No discussion. “Oh, you feel you were mistreated, I guess we should just go our separate ways.”
Now I fully admit I do not get much of modern society, or interpersonal stuff, but I didn’t think that was how it was supposed to work between friends. If I hurt my friend, and he calls me on it, I try my best to treat his call with respect. That is the honorable thing to do. I have given insult and must make amends, or at least seek to show my actions meant no offense. I have tried never to just say “tough, oh well, too bad.”
I once called him brother…but now I wonder if I was ever truly brother to him…