The Heron Crew

Hal Mikkelson:
The leader of the Heron brotherband and builder of the boat by the same name, Hal may not be your textbook definition of a Skandian. But what he lacks in fighting skill and strength, he more than makes up for with his intelligence, ingenuity and drive. Hal is the son of one of Skandia’s greatest warriors, Mikkel, but having such a revered father hasn’t stopped his peers from taunting him for having an Araluen mother. Hal wants more than anything to win the brotherband competition to prove to everyone that he is a true Skandian.

Stig Olafson:
Hal’s first mate and best friend, Stig is known for his strength, loyalty, but most of all, his hot-temper. He’s unpredictable in nearly every way, but the one thing you can count on is that he will always be there for Hal.

Easily overlooked, Edvin is the very definition of average. He’s neither good nor bad at most things, but he does understand basic mathematics. He can often be found off on his own reading a book.

Unlike Edvin, Ingvar is not so easily missed. Large and very strong, Ingvar would be a valuable addition to any brotherband, were he not clumsy and as blind as a bat. Still, he is kind-hearted and is invaluable in battle . . . just so long as someone points him in the right direction.

Jesper is the fastest on the team-in more ways than one. His quickness in a running race is matched only by the speed and skill in which he steals from others. Still, unlike most thieves, Jesper is not at all interested in keeping the possessions he takes. He gains satisfaction from the challenge of stealing them.

Stefan is a jokester, but his clownish nature makes him unpopular with his peers who think well of themselves, as they are often the targets of his biting wit. He is also skilled in mimicry, able to impersonate anyone.

Ulf and Wulf:
It’s impossible to tell these identical twin brothers apart. Even their own mother often has difficulty figuring out who is who. Of course, they don’t make identifying them any easier, as they often pretend to be the other brother. And unlike most twins who seem to share a special bond, these two are in a perpetual state of bickering.

Rest of the Cast

At first glance, Thorn is nothing more than a homeless drunk who’s missing an arm. But what most people don’t know is that he was once the Maktig or “The Mighty One”-the title Skandians bestow each year on their champion of all warriors-for three years running. His life spiraled out of control when Mikkel, his best friend, died and he lost his arm in a boating accident. Only with Karina’s help was he able to turn his life around and find value in himself. He now serves as a second father to Hal and works at Karina’s eating house.

Karina Mikkelswife:
Once an Araluen slave, Karina was freed by and married to Mikkel. In addition to raising her son, Hal, after her husband’s death, she runs a local eating house.

Erak Starfollower:
Once the skirl (captain) of Wolfwind, Erak is now the Oberjarl of Skandia. He fought alongside Hal’s father and Thorn.

Erak’s second in command (first mate) aboard Wolfwind and now its skirl.

head instructor of brotherband training and former ship skirl.

assistant instructor to the Herons.

Leader of the brotherband called the Sharks, Tursgud is tall, muscular, handsome, and confident-although most would say pompous. He is the ideal young Skandian and is the son of the current Maktig. He is willing to do anything to win the brotherband competition, including intimidate and cheat. He finds pleasure in harassing Hal.

Popular among his peers and the son of a successful wolfship captain, Rollond is the leader of Wolves, the third brotherband. Athletic and skilled in wrestling, he believes in fair play and has no pretentions about his own importance.

Pirate captain of the Raven, Zavac catches the Skandians, and especially the Herons, off guard by stealing the Andomal, the Skandians most prized artifact.