Service under Soma
Lif began training to become a raider at a young age, quickly becoming a master shipbuilder and skald. He joined the Great Heathen Army some time in the late 860s or early 870s, falling under the command of the Viking leader Guthrum. It was around this time that Lif met Soma, striking up a quick friendship with the ambitious warrior. This friendship was strained when Guthrum placed Soma in command of the Grantebridgescire garrison, a duty Lif believed he was better suited to carry out. Lif soon became one of Soma’s primary advisors, alongside Galinn and Birna. 
In 873, shortly before the establishment of Ravensthorpe, Wigmund, a lesser nobleman and member of the Order of Ancients, staged a successful raid of Grantebridge. During the ensuing retreat, Lif was captured by Wigmund’s men. He was later freed by Eivor Varinsdottir, and regrouped with the rest of Soma's clan. 
Lif took part in the retaking of Grantebridge, and fought valiantly for the city. After the city was reclaimed, Lif took up his old position as Soma's advisor and master shipbuilder.