display | more...
Mythical. Squirrel.

Why yes, there is a mythical uber-squirrel in Norse mythology.

Packed in there with Fenrir the wolf, and the world encircling Midgard serpent, And the great cow of the Universe, is a squirrel name Ratatoskr (called Ratatosk by some, but sounding soooo much better with the ending r, which is correct; although autocorrect apparently thinks its name is Reddit Tasker....)

In Norse myth, you may know, there is a world tree called Yggdrasil, which has a serpent or dragon by the name of Nidhogg ever annoyingly gnawing at its roots, and an eagle ever perching upon its upper branches. And, since they apparently have no Wi-Fi (Tree-Fi?), in order to communicate, they pass messages via squirrel mail. Some claim these are simply observations from the watchful eagle; others, that they are insults passed between them -- as in "your mama doth be so fat, that like unto the Midgard serpent, she sitteth around the world." And this squirrel mail is carried by one squirrel, in particular. And she's a her, and her name is Ratatoskr. This tidbit appears in various sources of the Norsemen, and would pass little notice except for the fact that Marvel Comics, in their wisdom, have on a couple occasions seen fit to bring Ratatoskr from her mythic Asgardian home down to Earth. Once to cause problems for Thor, another time to make trouble for Squirrel Girl, who then recruited Thor (who at the time was the female Thor) and the previous Thor (now calling himself Odinson) and Loki (who for bizarre reasons assumed a feline head for the duration of the adventure). In Squirrel Girl's encounter, Ratatoskr was depicted as having the power to grow to an elephantine size, and to project some kind of mind control onto persons in its vicinity. This is currently relevant, by the way, because a live action Squirrel Girl character is slated to appear in the next Marvel TV series, New Warriors, casting Milana Vayntrub as the bucktoothed heroine, for which it is entirely plausible that Ratatoskr will be tasked as a foe.

In some depictions, Ratatoskr has a ridiculously long horn. This is so for no other reason than that one time (in the Seventeenth century) some Icelandic manuscript writer thought it a keen thing to draw Ratatoskr so. Ratatoskr has nothing to do with ratatouille, which the divine squirrel precedes by nearly a millennium, or with that most idiotic of Pokemon, Rattata.



----

I tried calling Ratatoskr as one for the We All Float Down Here: The 2017 Halloween Horrorquest, it being the closest thing in squirreldom to an Eldritch Horror, but alas I haven't the wherewithal to pull it off.