Some things are not beautiful, but thinking makes them so.
He turns up the volume of the TV for the third time during the same programme to drown out the cacophony of hammering, drilling and sawing emanating from the spare room, and tries to concentrate on the narrator's low mellifluous voice. Heimdall agrees that television is the opiate of the masses, but he makes an exception for nature documentaries on Monday nights. Unfortunately, Freyr considers Mondays the best time to work on his "inventions" after the "long weekend break."
Though where Freyr's work is concerned, the weekend begins on Tuesday.
The door of the workroom is slightly ajar, so that Heimdall's appreciation of the soaring flight of a majestic golden eagle is marred by off-key humming. With the adroitness of frequent practice, he hooks a claw around the handle without taking his eye off the screen and slams the door shut. After a brief pause, the humming resumes on a slightly less jarring note.
Experience has taught Heimdall that asking about Freyr's latest endeavour is rarely worth the effort of shouting above the din and making his way through the spare parts and bits of unidentifiable impedimenta strewn haphazardly about the place, so he uses the commercial break to go outside and clear his head.
The air is clean and crisp, the stars visible for once in the murky nights of Midgard, and Heimdall finds himself sitting in the garden for longer than he intended, gazing up at the bright points of light in the velvet darkness, and trying not to think of a rainbow arching across the expanse of sky as far as his eye could see.
The sound of a power drill reminds him where he is, and he returns to the house just in time to see the end credits scroll down the screen.
His finger stops in the act of pressing the "off" button on the remote control preparatory to an early bedtime (since tomorrow will be another long day at the juku, and he needs rather more sleep than a bird in his present form): his eye is drawn to a boy playing with his dog, laughing in childish delight at the antics of his pet while his father looks on indulgently. A casual observer would have called the expression on Heimdall's face wistful, but Freyr, watching unnoticed, knows better.
Heimdall's exposure to advertising is limited; the logo of an insurance company flashes on the screen, and his frustrated sigh as he hits the "off" button is audible in the silence that follows. When he looks up at Freyr standing in the doorway, his familiar sardonic smile is back in place.
"Finished so early? I thought you would be going on all night, from the mess and the noise."
Freyr's grin is even more unbalanced than usual as he whips out a covered object from behind his back, unveiling it with a flourish.
"This project is a small one, for a small person. Freyr trusts that Hemu will be as satisfied with his pet as Loki is with his!"
The black spheroid rises slowly from Freyr's palm, two floppy appendages trailing awkwardly in its wake as it floats over to Heimdall unsteadily, the twin red lights on its front blinking eerily in tandem with the rhythmic opening and closing of the aperture below them. It settles itself on Heimdall's lap, emitting a mechanical sound which his startled ears interpret as "punyan, punya~an".
The surface is rough where the metal sheets have been bolted togther, and cold where it touches his knees, but Heimdall thinks that it is the most wonderful thing Freyr has made here, and the smile on his face reminds Freyr of someone else.