The 13th Warrior (1999) Script

I am Ahmed Ibn Fahdlan, Ibn Al Abbas, Ibn Rasid, Ibn Hammad.

And things were not always thus.

At one time, I was a poet... in the greatest city in the world.

Life was easy, and I lived without care... until one fateful day...

I met a beautiful woman... who belonged to another man.

Her jealous husband complained to the Caliph... who made me the ambassador to the land of the Tossuk Vlad... a country far to the north.

I was banished from my home... and from all that I knew.

So, I journeyed by camelback many months into the lands of barbarian peoples... accompanied by Melchisidek, an old friend of my father... through the lands of the Ogus, the Khazars and the Bulgars, into the lands of murderous bandits, called "Tartars," who attack caravans, slaughtering everyone.

The Tartars are coming!

The Tartars are coming!

The Tartars...

Run! Run for your life!

They have stopped. They are not following.

- A boat! A boat! They're Northmen! A boat!

A boat! Over there!

Look! They are going!

They are leaving!

Move! Move! Keep moving!

Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi. Wait, wait, wait!

Those men in the boat, who are they?

The Northmen. Keep moving and keep quiet!

Why? Are they dangerous?

It depends. Maybe they'll let us go, or maybe they'll kill us.

I am an ambassador, damn it!

I am supposed to talk to people!

You may yet have the opportunity.

What do you suppose the potentate of this encampment calls himself?

Oh, emperor, at the very least.

Hmm. Emperor.

We seek your...

We seek your headman, your king.

Try Greek.


He says their king is out there in that tent.

He says the king will not speak to us.

Apparently, the king won't speak to us because he's dead.

This is his funeral.

You are being introduced to one of the heirs apparent...


"Buliwyf wishes a song of glory."

Recite a poem, a tale.

Surely you remember something.


In the beginning, the Earth was void, and the spirits of God passed...

Now that there was a new king, the Northmen prepared for the funeral of their old king.

"We will burn him. In one moment, he and all he owns can be in paradise.

These are our gifts to our lord to support his kingdom in paradise.

To take with him?

Lo there do I see my father.

'Lo there do I see my mother, my sisters and my brothers.

- 'Lo there do I see the line of my people... back to the beginning.

'Lo they do call to me.

They bid me take my place among them in the halls of Valhalla, where the brave may live forever.

"She will travel with him.

You will not see this again. It is the old way."

Another ship arrived during the night.

There's a boy standing out there on the bow like he's a statue.

The boy is letting them see him.

He's in plain sight!

They do not know if what they see is real.

Something to do with the mist.

Apparently, they find dangerous things, spirits in the mist.

The boy was being polite, giving them time to decide if he's real.

He's a messenger.

He comes from their homeland in the north with a message for Buliwyf.

He is Wulfgar, son of King Hrothgar, a great king from the north.

He comes to ask Buliwyf for help.

His father's kingdom is under attack. Their village is destroyed.

They are menaced by an ancient evil, a terror.

A terror that has no name.

A terror that must not be named.

Look at them. What thing would affect them so?

"The name cannot be said."

"He calls for the Angel of Death.

"He calls for the bones. She's an oracle.

She calls for men, a number of them.

Thirteen. The number of months in the year.

She says 13 men must go."





"She says the 13th man must be no Northman."

What the hell are you saying?

The 13th warrior is you.

He thinks your horse is too small.

Something about, "Only an Arab would bring a dog to war."

"He wishes to know your name."

I am Ahmed Ibn Fahdlan, Ibn Al Abbas, Ibn Rasid...

- "Eban." No, no.

Listen. Ahmed Ibn Fahdlan. Ibn means "son of."


Hyah! Hup!

What is he saying?

"Hurry to meet death before your place is taken."

I will not forget you. Go with God.

You listening?


... sneak up to steal ten or twelve horses.

... we can find some geese.

So then he says, "Do not foretell me wife, for I will get to know so-proven aye komin home tonight."

I don't sound like that.

Roneth slept with her while we took the horses.

Blowhards, both of you.

She probably was some smoke-colored camp girl.

Looked like that one's mother.

My mother...

was a pure woman...

from a noble family.

And I, at least, know who my father is, you...

pig-eating son of a whore.

No, no, no, no, no! Wait!

Come on, come on, come on, come on. Come.

Come on. Where did you learn our language?

I listened!

You can draw... sounds?

"Draw sounds"?

Yes, I can draw sounds, and I can speak them back.

Show me.

There is only one God... and Muhammad (peace be upon him) is His prophet.

Bring me those sacks.

Hey! Mind yourself.

Be quiet.

Only an "Arob"... would bring...

A dog to war?

I heard this the first time.

Good going, "Arabe."

Come on.

The dog can jump.


No, no. Eat!

Shouldn't we stay closer to land?

No, boy! This is no day to be close to land!





What did you... What is that... Be silent.



"Arabe," speak what I draw.

There is only one God... and Muhammad (peace be upon him) is his...




You'll need this.

I cannot lift this.

Grow stronger.


Well-fed on a light mount.


A woman.

A herald.

It's a silk-swaddled messenger boy.

Tell me your names! Quickly!

I am Son to Hygiliak, called Buliwyf.

We all know your worthy lord.

We come on an errand to serve him.

My Lord Hrothgar will want to welcome you himself.

No wall, no moat, not even a presentable fence.

You couldn't keep a cow out of this place.

Women and children.

Barely a man between 15 and 50.

My lord, this is Buliwyf, son of Hygiliak, come from across the sea.

I know the man. I sent for him.

Knew him as a boy, knew his father, and I know him now.

Grown to a man.

Grown to a fine, fine man.

What troubles this place, old man?

You know he might be mad.

Be in the mist.

Has anyone seen one?

Has anyone seen one in a hundred years? Hyah!

They say they used to be all over this countryside... and worse further north.

People say many things.

Whatever they are, unless we can track them, we need a proper fence and some sort of moat...

We could fashion a gate from a wagon.

I don't want to build a fence. I'm not a farmer.

- Let's go track the bastards... Gentlemen!

- Boy! Speak to me, boy! Who did this?

- Speak to me! Find someone who knows him. - Wait!

I know him.

It's a farmstead, just up the glen.

I will take you.

Don't step in front of me.

So it's true.

No horse tracks.

- They were afoot. Their heads are missing.

The child must have crawled into a hole to escape.

They have been... gnawed upon.

It is said they eat the dead.

Wh-What kind of a man... could do that?

It was not man.

It's the Wendol. Shh!

They are here.

What is it?

The mother of the Wendol.

The trail? Dies in the rocks, two miles up.

So they are clever.

And cautious.

And there's more.

To the right. The ridge near the watchtower.

And to the south.

The edge of the trees near the first ridgeline.

Something drove them out.

Put your hand down, little brother.

I believe they watch us.

Even now.

If we chase?

They melt. Will they come to us?

The farmers say they come with the mist.

So, if there's a fog, they will come.

We are hunted now in our own land.

It wasn't always such.

At first we thought to build, to leave something, farms as far as the eye could see.

What of the settlements to the north and upcountry?

Estwyck was burned.

Two years. Two years... ago.

And the others, we had no word.

Not for some months.

At night, with the drink upon them...

You do not drink tonight?

No, we don't drink tonight.

But let the dawn come, and they see the bodies.

This gentleman has the look of a great warrior. No doubt he's very brave.

But to face the Wen... he'll need some amazing luck.

Luck often enough will save a man, if his courage hold.

That's as may be.

Who is that man? King's son.

But wait for the Wendol one night's time... and then talk to us of courage.

I thank the lord for his advice, though I don't recall hearing any exploits of his... apart from killing his brothers.

You sit down and be silent!

These are guests at what is still my table!

There is a man who was at Estwyck.

I saw the thing that did this clear enough!

Teeth like a lion, head like a bear, claws that could tear a plank to kindling.

They come in the night, in the mist.

Always in the darkest, like they could see in the black.

Did they go on two legs or four?

It seems they did both, like a thing that was both man and bear.

Though, myself, I cannot tell.

I saw the glowworm, though.

Saw it clear. We all did on the last night.

Saw it come down out of the hills, through the mist.

Slithering this way and that. Long as a hundred ships.

Spitting fire at us as it came.

My father's father always warned of it.

Said it was a hate from old times.

There will be fog.

Bring me my armour!

I will stand the watch with you.

My lord, the children will need protection.

Should they pass us, then you and yours must stop them.

Luck in battle, boy.

How can you sleep at a time like this?

The Old Father wound the skeane of your life a long time ago.

Go and hide in a hole if you wish.

But you won't live one instant longer.

Your fate is fixed.

Fear profits man nothing.

When they come, we form a circle in the center of the room, backs to one another.

I am not a warrior.

Very soon you will be.


Well, he didn't run!


You appear none the worse for wear.

Rognar is here. His head?


They take the heads. They always take the heads.

What about Hyglak?

It's the same.

- I see none of them. What?

None of them.

None of the ones we killed.

Nor do I.

Not one.

I took two at least that could not have lived.

As did I. As did we all.

Even the Arab gutted one. There was some life left in him.

They carried them off. They must have.

They are demons.

Their blood looks real enough.

Ow! You complain much.


Help me carry Ragnar out.

What is that?

Cow urine.

"Cow urine"?

Boiled down. No.

No, no, no. Don't put that filth on me. No, no.

Water. Clean water.

As you wish.

Tomorrow the pus will run and you'll have a fever.

Come, friend.

Your head has gone looking for your hands.

They will meet you in paradise.

No bodies, but here perhaps... is one of their claws.

Let's go, little brother.

We have the fences to build.

Keep 'em comin' down.

Come in here. Line up there.

Over here. It'll be a long day.

You, in here. You, over here.


Stand there. I'll cut this pole.

Keep your eye on the pole, all right?


Now you do it.


Is there a metal worker?

A metal worker!

He insisted.

Give an Arab a sword, he makes a knife.

It works.

When you die, can I give that to me daughter?

Are you thirsty?

Mead? Water.

Thank you.


Ow! That's a woman's sound.

Do that again and you'll make it.

You'll heal.

I think my nose is ruined.

A small price. Ow!

People are very quiet today.

The peasants fear you will bring the fireworm down on us. - What?

The fireworm. The fire-serpent.

"The fire-serpent."

A dragon?

I do not believe in dragons.

Beware of Prince Wigliff.

He poisons the king's ear, says your Buliwyf has plans to take his kingdom.

Is there truth in this?


You may believe me.

Then be cautious.

She would say no more.

She doesn't need to.

Prince, aah!

We'll need an example.

The redhead?


I'll do it.

You shouldn't be involved.

What should I do? Keep your teeth together and go back to work.

Watch where you throw that.

You dig like a dog.

Did you call me a dog?

I said you dig like one, flinging earth carelessly like an animal.

So, now I'm an animal?

You're not listening.

I'm deaf?

You're a fool, little man.

That is because, boy, your words are feeble... and twisted as an old woman's!

This old woman'll send you to the next world, old man!

What happened?

An engineering dispute.

- You notice he's bigger than you? Yes.

And younger? Yes.

Bet on him, if you like. I may!



You must stop it.

He's going to get killed. That is possible.

But you can't... you can't...

You stupid fools!

See to your friend.

He was a brave man.

You... you could have killed him at will. Yes?

Wh-wh-why the deception? Deception is the point!

Any fool can calculate strength.

That one has been doing it from the moment he saw us.

Now he has to calculate what he can't see.

And fear what he doesn't know.

As you say, foolish and expensive.

We'll miss Angus tonight. We will miss his sword.



Stifle your racket. I hear you.

I thought to find you in the tower. Yeah.

- Why I'm not in it. Brought your food.

- It's going to rain. Surf.

Three miles up there's a cliff.

Tide's right, waves make thunder.

Farmers call it the "thunder cliffs."

The mist is forming.

I see it.

The worm. They've roused the fireworm.


No time to waste. Outside! Go!

Quickly! Move!

Come on!

Go get the water.

A serpent of fire.

Breathing fire.

What's that in the field below the tower?

It's a child. Look at her.

Open the gate. Get the gate!

Open the gate! Push!

No! You need to raise the spikes first! Help me!

Come on! Down.

Push it now!


So you saw the fireworm?

It's cavalry.

I rather prefer a dragon. Hundreds.

With torches.

Take the north.

Let's go, little brother. It's beginning.

"Arabe"! Here!


Allah, be merciful.

Ja! Did you see that? Hold this.

I got you! Ja!


It's a man.

It's a man.

It's a man. It's a man.

It's a man! It's a man!

It's all right, little brother.

There are more.



Aah! Aah!



Get 'em over!


They've breeched the gate!



They've breeched the gate!

Fight them! Turn and fight them!


Come on! Come on!


What do I do with it?

Put your foot on it and stand!







Skeld, Halga, Roneth... and Rethel will be joining them.

I cannot... taste neither the fermentation of grape... nor of wheat.


Why do you laugh?


It's made from honey.

We will die here.

It is...



Come on.

She finish you, or bring you back to life?

A gentleman doesn't discuss such things.

Three more on the fence.

Looks like the mating of a man and some beast.

It's a man.

If it's a man, it must sleep.

If it sleeps, it has a lair and we have a trail.

Attack them?

Is there a choice?

Come with me. There is a woman who can help.

Bring the Arab.

There's one down here who was old... when my grandmother was a girl.

She's quite mad.

The perfect advisor.

Oh, Weilew. Oh.

Shame, shame, shame.

It's a Queen Weilew fronts me now, does she not?

We seek your counsel, Madam.

We or he?

Step closer, Buliwyf.


You know me?

I have ears. "Warrior," says the wind.

"Chieftain," says the rain.

But why seek you me?

Met you your match?

Met you your match... with the eaters of the dead?

We seek your wisdom.

Wars are won in the will.

Perhaps you've been fighting in the wrong field.

Have you a token? A thing.

A thing of them. Yes.


They show you the way you will not see.

Slaughter them till you rot.

You'll accomplish nothing.

Find the root.

- Strike the will. How?

This is the mother of the Wen.

She they revere.

She is the will.

Where do I seek her?

She is the earth. Seek her in the earth.

And Buliwyf, beware the leader of their warriors.

He wears the horns of power.

He, too, you must kill.

Have we anything resembling a plan?

Uh-huh. Ride till we find them, kill them all.

A child could follow this.

They have no fear, no fear of us at all.

The dog does not approve.

Bear skulls.

I don't think they like company.

The claws.

The headdresses.


They think they are bears.

They want us to think they are bears.

Hey, how do you hunt a bear?

Chase it down with dogs. What...

How do you hunt a bear in winter?

Go in his cave with spears.

Where is a cave?

It's in the earth.

The next glen, many fires.

Is there a cave?

But there's no cave.

Yes, there is.

- Straight into the rock face. Can we get to it?

If they don't keep dogs, maybe.

You'd have to kiss me first, dearie.

Let's go.

Oh, how deep in the Earth are we?

Deep enough to fall out the bottom. Come on!

Look at your feet.

I was wrong.

These are not men.

If we cut our way through them, we will have the other lot on us.

Down the wall, and we swim.

I go.

Let's go, little brother. I do not enjoy heights.



Go! Kill her!

Do it!



Damn it!

It is done?

It is.

A hard fight to get clear of here?

Hey, there's a passage leading down.

I've run about as far as I care to.

Today was a good day.

A good day.

Get along, lad.



We'll just keep following this stream.

It has to come out somewhere.

Stream disappears under the rocks.

Buliwyf! I'm all right.

We fight by twos. Give the other pair a chance to rest.

Here they come.

Go on, make it worse.

Now it's gonna rain.

It's gonna rain. It's gonna rain.

Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait!

Thunder. Waves make thunder.

The thunder cliffs. Surf. Surf.

There's a surf out there.

Can we swim it? Do we drown trying?

Try it.

Breathe! Breathe! Deep breath!

Now, one, two, three!

The way we'll know is... if they don't follow us, it's too far to swim!

Not through the night.

- His fate is sealed. You don't know that.

The skeane is tied.

The weave was settled long ago.

You're wearing that long face for me?

I cannot help it.

I have only these hands.

I will die a pauper.

You will be buried as a king.

A man might be thought wealthy... if someone were to draw... the story of his deeds... that they may be remembered.

Such a man might be thought wealthy indeed.

He's traveling to the other side.

He grips his sword as if afraid he will not wake.

Think no more of these things. You must rest now.

- I'm not tired. Rest.

The Wendol want vengeance for killing their mother.

They will come soon.


We killed the mother but not the leader.

As long as he lives, they will come back to fight us.



The evening lasts so long here.

Not like home.

I don't think tonight there will be... fog.

"Kill the mother," she said.

"Kill their leader and they will break."

We'll soon find out if she was right.

At least we don't have to worry about fire.

They're all terrified, ready to break and run.

I wish we had Buliwyf with us.

It's a small matter.


Prepare yourselves.

Merciful Father, I have squandered my days with plans of many things.

This was not among them.

But at this moment, I beg only... to live the next few minutes well.

When the time comes.

Don't let them be taken.

For all we ought to have thought... and have not thought, all we ought to have said... and have not said, all we ought to have done... and have not done,

I pray Thee, God, for forgiveness.

They're coming!

'Lo there do I see my father.

- 'Lo there do I see my mother and my sisters... Mother and my sisters...

- and my brothers. And my brothers.

'Lo there do I see the line of my people, back to the beginning.

'Lo they do call to me.

They bid me take my place among them.

In the halls of Valhalla, where the brave... may live... forever.





It's over.

We shall make prayers for your safe passage.

Prayers to who?

In your land one god is perhaps enough, but we have need of many.

I will pray to all of them for you. Do not be offended.

I'll be in your debt.

Good-bye, Arab!

Good-bye, Northman.

Across seas of monsters and forests of demons we traveled.

Praise be to Allah, the merciful and compassionate.

May His blessing be upon pagan men... who loved other gods, who shared their food... and shed their blood... that his servant, Ahmed Ibn Fahdlan, might become a man... and a useful servant of God.