Odin was the head of the ancient North Family of Mither Mages residing in Northern Virginia. Born under the name Alf, he inherited the head-of-family title and role from Zog when it became clear he was the most powerful Mage in the Family, a Rockbrother with an affinity for pure metals. His ability to allow machines, such as car engines, to run with nearly no friction allowed him to be an incredible mage.
Odin had been given permission to marry Gerd, the next most powerful Mage in the Family, a Lightmage, with hopes of their offspring being a powerful Mage—perhaps even a much sought after, but openly denied and pledged to kill, Gatemage. This was exactly what their son, Danny was.
Gerd and Odin purposefully distanced themselves from Danny during his upbringing in the event he was a Gatemage so that they might appear impartial in a decision about his survival or usefulness to the Family. Ultimately, this is what contributed to Danny's mistrust of his Family and his running away from the compound at age thirteen. It turned out that the proper thing to do was to get close to his as he trusted a aunt and a uncle