2. How did you become first aware of this deity?
When I was first beginning to research and deciding that I wanted to walk this path years ago, I remember being on a “Real Magick” guild in Gaia Online. Trust me, when I say years, I mean years. This was back in middle school. I’m 20 now and look back on those days with some degree of horrendous shuddering and snarling. Anyway, one of the bigwigs in the guild was one of Loki’s devotees — how things come around in the end — and I was really interested in learning more about the Norse gods after I read a thing she posted about blowing up marshmallow peeps in the microwave for him. I can attest that this keeps him amused for far longer than it should. So, I looked up the names of the Norse gods, and this was back before Wikipedia, so there wasn’t one Big Ass List of Germanic Deities that I could go to. I ended up on a site that just gave the basics on some of the gods. Off the top of my head I remember seeing Thor, Odin, Frigga, Freyja, Frey, and Tyr on that list, and probably Idunna as well but I’m not sure. I remember what the site looked like rather vividly, and I’m not sure why. At the time, though, I couldn’t for the life of me keep any of their names straight, so I ended up kinda giving up on them completely for a while and attempting contact with the Greco-Roman pantheon, which was how I learned that Poseidon and I do not get along. 😀 I hate his guts, to be honest. And he knows it.
So, I pantheon-hopped for a while, trying to make friends wherever I went. I ended up meeting Hecate and Selene at one point and getting along rather famously with them, although they kept telling me i wasn’t “theirs.” So I moved on to the Celtic pantheon. Or, tried, anyway. I couldn’t keep any of their names straight either, and still only have an acquaintance-level understanding of Ceridwen, Cernunnos, Lugh, and the Morrigan, the four that I ever actually met. Then hopped to the Egyptian pantheon and tried to make friends with Bast, only to find out that she really didn’t like me and ended up calling Set my patron for a long time. Horus actually was very curious about me during that period, probably because Red-Tailed Hawk is one of my life-long animal guides, but even Set kept his distance. He led me to the runes, and I took up researching them.
After I made my first set of runes, the Norse gods started creeping slowly into my life again. I became slightly familiar with Odin due to his connection with the runes, and from there started learning the pantheon, one name at a time. Then I watched the first Thor movie, because I thought it would be funny, and got gut-smacked with the Mjollnir of Feels at the end sequence with all the galactic clusters forming into Yggdrasil.
After that, things started happening, and I realized I found my path. My mother once asked me how I knew I was a heathen, and my answer was, “because they were the only gods who answered,” which is true. I lost my phone once, and kept saying, “Odin, please, help me find this damn thing, I actually do need it, please help,” and when I got home to tell my mom, all in tears, she started laughing and said that an elderly couple had returned the phone to the store it came from. That was the first of the Really Weird Stuff.
As for how Frey specifically got introduced… I have no idea. He just sort of… appeared? I had a bunch of Them appear to me all at the same time, while I was trying to talk to them for other people, which wasn’t fun. Tyr telling you that your friend isn’t worth it is not something anyone wants to hear, but he was right, in the end. Actually, I suspect Loki brought Frey along once when I was calling deities for a circle on Halloween my first year of college. I was so surprised when all of them actually showed up! So, I suspect that’s where I met him. Nowadays, he pops by to… um… say hello every once in a while.
Tl:dr: Basically I don’t know where Frey came from specifically, but I remember how I found the rest of the Aesier, Vanir, and Loki, so, he couldn’t have been too far behind.