"Nothing was changed, everything was changed." In the passage from Gardner's book, Grendel, the speaker, relays his bitter and confused opinion and attitude towards the dragon, men, and the shaper who have all affected the way he views life situations. Gardner shows, through Grendel's views and connections with other's, how when someone else has a different opinion than one's own, many times one's opinion can be altered to accommodate theirs, whether for better or worse.
Grendel went to visit the dragon to seek advice after hearing the Shaper's song. After Grendel saw and spoke with the dragon, unbeknownst to him, the dragon put a charm on him so that no sword or weapon would be able to pierce his skin. In the passage Grendel seems almost disappointed in the charm after he realizes it is not a blessing and will change who he is. Grendel is angry and upset with the dragon because of this. His "heart became darker" and he began to realize the truths of his world. The fear and respect that was always present when he was fighting men was no longer there because they couldn't harm him with their weapons. He seems to miss the danger and chance of battle rather than basically being handed his fleshy-snack every night. .
Grendel's attitude towards the men changes dramatically when he realizes they can't hurt him; he now feels lost without the connection he had before when he was able to fight with men. Grendel's fear of humans, what little he showed, was reduced to nothing and his respect for this group of men also dropped dramatically. He "scorned them, sometimes hated them." He became almost bored so he "killed stragglers every now and then - with a certain grim pleasure." Their confidence, "their blissful, swinish ignorance their bumptious self-satisfaction, and their hope," made Grendel angry. Before this discovery he had never attempted to show himself at the mead-hall except for one time when he had attempted to join them after hearing the Shaper's song.