Dedicated to a 15th February birthday.
Asta's Bird Shadows
A series of learning resource videos to support school assemblies, social studies lesson plans, and awareness of resilience.
Based upon a fictional ninth century narrative based in the north of England, the plot can easily be referenced to events and news stories happening in the present.
As in James Joyce's Ulysses or quantum theory physics, viewers may pursue numerous paths in gaining insights through critical thinking. The content puts demands on the audience.
These videos are part of an ongoing series. They comprise of teaser and trailer videos for Asta's journey and longer features outlining the story.
Full access to all the resilience, emotional well-being videos are available on Vimeo via VOD and OTT.
“Once upon a time, a long time ago, there was ………..”
MAP SETTING THE SCENE FOR ABOVE
Located in the Morecambe Bay and its physical geographical features. The scope includes the IOM, Walney Island, Peil Island, the Lune and Wyre, Bowland Fells and Ingleboro.
MAIN CHARACTER & HEROIN
Asta (Ash -ta) is a diminutive of Astrid. Astrid originates in Old Norse languages and means "divine beauty".
SAVIOUR OF ASTA & HER FAMILY
Gyda is a Danish variant of Gytha. Gytha originates on Old Norse and means "God is gorgeous".
HEROIC SCHOOL FRIEND WHO LEADS EVERYONE TO SAFETY
Leif. Descendant of Leif Erickson
KEY SUPPORTING CHARACTER WHO IS THE GREAT THINKER THAT BRINGS PEACE
Nordic hamlet raided by Celts from the Cumbrian Mountains
Tell their story(ies)
Include key ethical/moral/learning points:
- Telling a personal voyage of discovery
- Overcoming challenges
- Having a powerful epiphany
- Redemption and learning point(s).
Asta's Bird Shadows
Shivering, shaking, blinking, I suddenly woke from deep sleep to a nightmare. Hearing terrifying cries, filling the nights’s darkness with violent echoing chaos, I put my head under a pillow.
Arrows took the last breath away from the night watch and silenced the guards.
The silent northern blue tattoed raiding Celts, skilfully scaling the hamlet’s wooded defences and breeching the battlement, were now howling for blood. Swinging, flashing silver blades, struck the heart of my community.
Now howling and screaming, the violators charged, kicking in doors, entering, and ending the lives of families stumbling from their last slumbering movements. Oozing blood flowing from the living signaled the ending their conscious existence. Final screams and gurgling from surpised gaping mouths signalled their ending. They had no chance.
The burning hamlet on Priory Hill sent flaming fingers upwards. Relecting clouds lit up an image of bedlam and hell.
Grabbing my hands, with the tattoed raiders storming up the stairs, Leif and Magnus, were lowering me out of the window, as the old world was ending. Capturing Gyda and dragging her away, the torched the wooden house and cremating the inturned bodies.
These are worst scene from the nightmares haunting my early life. May you never experience the misasma from hells infernos of the burning stench of human flesh panicking, baying animals escaping flaming barns.
Stumbling along a hidden forest path with night birds guiding and flanking our paths to safety, a parliament of tawney owls were scouting the escape route. Bats sonic screeching helped by spotting hazards and fallen trees. A chorus of hooting was guiding the fleeing refugees. Silent, sure footed roe deer guarding the flanks, helped by propping us up, stopping us falling.
Away to the North West, on Priory Hill, evil skies were reflecting angry red and yellow flames started by the evil night raiders.
At the ending of the escapade from the raiders, the trooping deer, who had been skilfully, and very, very quietly escorting my frail party, led us into a secret hunting lodge hidden high in the foothills of the fabled Table Top Mountains.
The refuge was guarded by dense thickets, fast flowing rivers and small lakes. Only the best and fittest survived here. Eagles and birds of pray, carrying out high level reconnaissance from the skies, were searching, scanning, and circling the hidden refuge for signs approach from the marauding kidnappers.
For two days, laying low, we spent sleeping, talking, planning, and discussing escaping from our catastrophic nightmare. Staying locked in the warmth security of our safe house would have been the easy option. The will and the desire to save Gyda and try to do something positive was the winning option.
Again with the roe deer silently guiding us through the thickets we found a small coracle tied to the moss covered bank of the fast flowing river bank. With salmon and otters escorting us, the leather craft was soon quickly bobbing down the winding river. Birds, wrens, robins and crows were keeping a sharp look out. Ferrying past rocky rapids, valley troughs, deep pools with swirling whirlpools, we escaped to the sandy estuary where the river entered the bay. Here the deer and bird friends handed over the watching brief to gannets, petrels and black backed gulls. Darting, dancing, glinting dolphins began towing the tiny craft over the blue seas to the magical castle on the island in the west where the sun sets.
As the moon was waxing, the dolphins were safely guiding us into a sheltered cove hidden from prying eyes and the evil raiders.
Scheming how to rescue Gyda in the magical island castle, Magnus, the wise, began slowly evolving his cunning plan with the horned, helmeted Norsemen. Leif used his heroic fathers links to build up new friendships with the clans, families and alliances that had evolved from his families proud heritage exploring distant lands across the ocean toward the setting sun.
Constantly, the petrels and swallows, were bringing news of sightings and developments on the movements of the the northern raiders. A drugged and tied up Gyda was being taken north into the Purple Mountains and the home of the Celt marauders.
Circling high over the hill route to the northern, purple mountains, buzzards following the raiders, were constantly informing on the raiders movement. Magnus, thinking, working hard, and mapping out the information, was developing a courageous plan to save Gyda. In the briefing for the raid to save Gyda, Magnus was delegating duties and tasks. Whales and dolphins for aiding the rescue party across the blues seas and into the sandy estuary. Flights of birds were the eyes and ears with deer and hares leading the heroic rescuers to the brigands camp.
Tawney owls coordinating the rescue, hooting as dawn was breaking, were secretly scouting the approach route to the brigands den. Asta, Magnus and Lief riding on the backs of the deer, knowing the otters were breaching the stockade, prepared their stun granades and laser swords. Creeping through the silent, sleeping enemy den with snoring Celts, quietly waking a trembling Gyda, Leif treading silently led the brave raiders to the safety of the surrounding forest.
The animal friends, escorting the rescuers, gave no clues away to the drunken Celts. At the estuary, a school of whales, towing the long boat, ploughing the gentle waves, sped the rescuers to safety.
Gyda, crying, laughing, speaking, was telling the party of her ordeal when the golden eagle landing on the balcony, told how the Celts, fighting a loosing battle with the forest animals, were being driven out of their mountain dens.
Celebrating the victory, Asta, proclaiming peace, made a declaration of independence for the animals and the people the magical land of the Winding River.
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