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In a heartbeat

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In a heartbeat

 In a heartbeat COVER

Það er aldrei of seint fyrir ást.
It's never too late for love.

 

Chapter 1

“We are going to be late!” You ranted, stomping your foot when Susan started to flirt with the questionably young taxi driver that had brought you here. New York City was crazy, especially if you were in a hurry. Note to self—leave at least two hours earlier next time. This job interview would determine what direction your hopefully successful future would take, so you were definitely not having your friends ruin this one opportunity for you… even if you had to act all bitchy and bossy.

“Please, (Y/N), calm your tits, we’re gonna be on time. We still have…” —Karen looked at her fancy watch— “…twenty minutes.”

“So I can call you?”

“Anytime,” Susan bat her long eyelashes at the taxi driver before waving him goodbye like a spoiled princess, making you roll your eyes in plain annoyance.

“Why did I even bother bringing you two?” You asked, rather yourself than your friends when they giggled. They decided to answer you anyway.

“Because you love us? The building is only three blocks away, don’t worry.” Susan appeased. Her long black hair was falling over her shoulders like a wave of shimmering pitch when she loosened her tight ponytail. A sigh escaped her lips.

“Let’s go then.” You mumbled, seeking to distract yourself with your surroundings as you wandered along the busy pavement. This city was insane. Luxurious and important, it screamed career and success like a euphoric fury. How you would adapt to living here if you actually got that job today, you were unsure of. As for now, you were staying with Susan and her younger sister Karen, who had generously offered you a place to crash.

You were grateful, really—but sometimes, the siblings were a pain in the arse. Susan was right though. You still loved them and you three had experienced amazing things together already. You were best friends for life.

“Excuse me? Can you help me?” No. You could not. Being a tourist yourself, you would be of no help to anyone and besides, you were way too focused on your upcoming job interview. Two more blocks and your future would, if you got lucky, change for the better forever.

You flinched when Karen let out a scream, turning around in an instant to kick whoever had scared or attacked her right in the balls. The self-defence class, which you attended thrice a week, had been training you for situations like that. It made you feel safe when you were walking on the streets on your own, especially when it was dark out already. The slow progress you made with your personal trainer was paying off and making you vigilant, when you found her jumping up and down like a gummy ball and fangirling as if to react to spotting One Direction on the street, however, you frowned.

“OMG!” Susan spelled out, her jaw dropping. Her eyes were fixed on the long-haired blonde, who had addressed you. A tall and broad man dressed in battered clothes that reminded you of a homeless person. It was his face that made you realise your friends’ excitement though.

“You are Thor! OMG! You are Thor! You are the Thor! I love you! May we take a selfie with you? Please?”

The Thunderer smiled cordially and despite his confusion (welcome to the club, mate), he nodded. You didn’t care about the Norse God at all. Crushing on superheroes was Susan’s thing. You were fine dating normal men.

“Of course,” You doubted Thor knew what a selfie was in the first place but it was the least of your problems right now. Standing a few steps away, you scratched the back of your hand like you always did when you were nervous.

“Guys, we’re going to be late, for Fuck’s sake, please hurry!”

There was another person waiting. Clothed in a plain black suit that looked like it had been tailored for him, he dug his hands into the pockets of his pants. He appeared to be as irritated as you were, however, when you looked up to study his face, your heart skipped a beat.

This… was Loki. This was the very man who had tried to take over the world and caused mayhem all over New York City a couple of years ago. The man who had killed hundreds of innocent people and fought against the Avengers! His raven hair framed his flawless features, his stinging blue eyes boring right into yours. It seemed like with a single glance, he learned all of your darkest secrets and deepest desires.

You blinked, frantically, and looked away quickly when you noticed you were staring each other down, though you could still feel his scrutinising gaze on you when you brought your attention back to your friends who were now snapping crazy pictures with the God of Thunder.

You would never make it in time if they kept dawdling. Susan and Karen were both busy ignoring Loki completely as they talked to Thor, although Karen shot him one disgusted peek when she spotted him standing next to him.

“How can we help you, Thor?” Susan smiled and for just a brief moment you feared she would faint from pure delight.

Ten minutes.

“I am looking for a man.”

“Ha, I could swear most men are looking for a woman.” You muttered to yourself, scratching the back of your hand even fiercer.

“(Y/N)!” Susan admonished embarrassed. A careless shrug was all she received in return.

“Well, can you be a little more specific?” You continued. “Half of the population of New York is male.”

“(Y/N)!” Susan repeated. You shrugged once more all the while sudden curiosity hit you. What was he doing here in New York City and much more importantly, why had he brought Loki? For all you knew from watching the news, the God of Mischief had been called back to Asgard where he would have had to face justice and a proper punishment for his actions. Your curiosity was directed at him, fascination washing through your veins like a gushing wave of hot water. He just stood there, watching you, with a barely visible smirk playing on his thin lips.

Thor took a deep breath. You could tell he was irritated by your scornful remarks, clenching his fist repeatedly to assumingly keep calm, the other hand fumbling around with the ridiculous umbrella he was carrying despite the sunshine. Something was bothering him when he scowled, this much was obvious. But as were you—you had approximately five minutes left to show up for your job interview. Thor was a self-proclaimed superhero. Surely, he could take care of his problems himself and on top of it, deal with a few cocky insults.

“We are looking for my father,” he tried again, speaking slowly as if he was scolding an immature and young child who had stolen biscuits from the kitchen before supper. “Odin. He disappeared.” Following his dark words, he glared at his brother angrily from the corner of his eye. So he had something to do with it. You were not surprised he was, you had read the articles in the newspapers where they had described him as a mischievous, evil and witty cockroach from outer space.

“What does he look like?” Susan tossed in eagerly, playing with a strand of her black hair.

“He has… grey hair, a beard… he is one-eyed and wearing an eye patch and—“

“Thor…” It was the first time you heard him speak. Instantly, you turned your head to face Loki. His smooth voice was seducing, alluring and enchanting and nothing like what you imagined what a man who tried to conquer and subjugate the planet would sound like. You wished he would say more. You wanted to see how well-chosen and witty words left those thin lips.

No wonder he had succeeded in making a crowd kneel before him in fear… or had it been awe in the end? Loki wasn’t what SHIELD had let the world know he was. He didn’t seem like the monster they had described him as at all… was this the fatal mistake they had made back then?

Better stay away from him, you thought to yourself, withdrawing your gaze to stare longingly at the busy street in front of you. You were only a few blocks away now. Maybe you should just leave and let your friends deal with the strange Asgardian brothers.

Sighing, you moved to step away when you realised the reason for Loki’s unnerving comment. The mist crept up right behind you. Black, green and silver, it spread on the busy pavement, scaring passengers away and alarming a few pigeons. Wind was blowing where there appeared a black and gaping portal, promising dread, fear and death. Your blood ran cold. What was this sorcery?

Susan and Karen were frozen in place. Not daring to move, their eyes widened. They barely noticed Thor striding forward to shield them from the unidentified threat in the heart of New York City. Loki stood idly by, his lips slightly parted. Concern was present on his face, along with the undeniable expression of thinking hard. A plan was forming in his mind already.

Out of the green fog stepped a woman. Long and black hair framed her pale face, her stinging blue eyes even more intense with the black eye shadow she was wearing. In fact, she was abusing it but still, it suited her eerie appearance.

Smiling cruelly, she moved towards you.

“Who are you? Identify yourself!” Thor demanded, his right fist bringing up the umbrella. A weird sound erupted from it when he did and you understood with a start it was his famous hammer Mjölnir. This attire had merely been a disguise, hence Loki’s black suit.

“Me?” The woman replied, shrugging. “I am Hela. I am the Goddess of Death. And I am your queen.” She shrugged once more, her wicked grin widening. “Kneel.”

“I beg your pardon?” Loki narrowed his eyes, leaning forward ever so slightly.

She was another power-hungry sociopath then. Narcissistic and self-driven, with an inexplicable desire to rule a people. You needed to get away. Now.

“I don’t think so.”

What happened next was too fast for your mind to comprehend. Thor threw his hammer at Hela, a swift movement of his umbrella which had turned back to its original form within the blinking of an eye—and a lightning bolt swallowing him whole for the fraction of a second but instead of it colliding with her body, all covered in black leather, she… she caught it.

Hela sighed—she sounded almost disappointed. “Very well,”

An explosion erupted, knocking you to the ground. Simultaneously, you were pushed aside by someone and something hit your head—whether it was a body part or a piece of debris you did not know, for the only thing you could hear was the staggered screams of passengers and the high-pitched ringing in your ears. There was a sticky liquid running down your forehead and staining your cheeks. It was burning in your right eye, you could hardly see anything. Blood? Were you bleeding?

“(Y/N)…” It was Susan who croaked your name. She was lying on the ground, it was her foot that had connected with your head when you fell and when you looked up to meet her terrified gaze, you saw fear and anguish glistening in them.

A piece of metal was buried deep inside her chest, reddening her revealing outfit. There wasn’t much you knew about anatomy but with the blade being plunged into her body this close to her heart, you knew she would not survive even if an ambulance brought her to the hospital this instant.

Hela had killed her. Her absurd wrath had snuffed an innocent, one of your best friends.

“Susan… Susan, open your eyes, look at me! We’re gonna get you help!” You cried, biting back your tears.

Anger, fear and panic flooded your veins, paralysing every last limb of yours. Frozen and dumbfounded, you lay there, struggling to get up and breathing heavily all the while the goddess of death kept attacking Thor and Loki.

Thor was powerless without his hammer. He was surprised and confused and even Loki seemed startled. He flipped his daggers gracefully before flinging them at Hela so smoothly you could barely see it but even he would, on the long term, be defenceless against the ruthless goddess.

You attempted to get up and run, save yourself and Karen for as long as it was still possible. Was it? You doubted it. Momentarily, your important job interview was forgotten. If you died today… would the last thing you felt be worry about showing up on time?

It was then you heard an ear-piercing hiss. Out of thin air, orange sparks extended on the pavement. They created a circle through which suddenly, you spotted the head of a man. Dark hair and a neatly trimmed beard framed his face, a red cloak complementing the colour of it.

“Get in there! Quick!” He spoke, urging you on to… step through the portal? You could barely believe such a thing existed when Thor frowned and jumped inside without hesitation, quickly followed by Loki but then again… Hela had stepped out of a cloud made of green and black fog.

“Karen! Karen!” You bestowed frantically. She had realised now that Susan was dead too. She was kneeling next to her on the ground, her watering eyes empty and lost. She was bleeding too but at least, so you figured, she would be able to heal.

“Karen!”

“We don’t have time! Leave her, you can’t help her!” The head of the strange man shouted severely as it appeared once more. A foreign hand wrapped around your upper arm, pulling you inside the orange portal.

With a start, the streets of New York City, Karen’s kneeling form and Susan’s dead body were gone.

Chapter Text

Several seconds passed until the play of warm colours ceased. You were standing in what resembled the stairwell of an ancient mansion, with valuable sculptures in the corners and artistic paintings on the walls. In front of you there was the man who had saved your life. His red cloak seemed to be moving and floating on its own when he stepped forward to properly introduce himself. Thor was even faster to speak.

“So Earth has wizards now, huh?”

“Something like that. My name is Doctor Stephen Strange.”

Frowning, you looked around you. Stephen Strange. You had heard of his name before. He used to be a famous neurosurgeon before… there had been this atrocious accident.

You let out a breath you didn’t realise you were holding, your limbs still shaking. The shock of what had happened sat deep—clinging to your heart like claws, stabbing you from the inside out.

“W-whatever just happened? Who was that? What does she want?” Why did she kill my best friend, you added silently, swallowing thickly to suppress a sob. Your heart was still pounding like a steam hammer—it almost hurt.

Strange nodded. “Yes, what does she want, Thor? You seemed familiar.”

“We are not. I know as much about her as you do but we need to stop her now. My hammer…”

“A shame,” the wizard said, pouting in approval before turning to you. “I’m sorry about your friend.” Fighting back your tears once more, you nodded.

“Look, sorcerer, we need to find my father.” Thor continued sternly. “He’ll know what to do, he is the Allfather, the protector of the nine realms.”

“What brought him this title, I wonder?” Strange remarked sarcastically. “I know who your father is, we met shortly before he disappeared.”

“Disappeared?”

“Yes,” Strange said. “He chose to remain in exile when your brother Loki…” —he put a suspicious emphasis on his name— “…banished him to Earth.”

“But why would he do that?”

Loki. Where was he? Your thoughts drifted away from the weirdly calm conversation Strange and Thor were having. You didn’t want to be here—you didn’t belong here. You had just missed your job interview and then, even worse, lost one of your best friends to a powerful black-haired witch. This wasn’t right. None of this was.

“You should probably stay the night.” Strange suggested when you turned back to them again reluctantly. “It will take me some time to locate your father and in this house, you will be safe from Hela. I will personally bring you to your rooms. Don’t enter any of the others without me, they’re—uh—out of order.”

“Stay the night?” You chirped, terrified. “What about me? I can’t stay the night, I need to go back this instant! I have… had a job interview! I demand to leave immediately!” Although you tried to sound intimidating, your words were weak and exhausted.

The past hour had taken its toll on you and with the realisation of your best friend being gone sinking in more with every minute that passed, it was getting harder to even stand upright without throwing up or fainting like a pathetic little school girl.

“You can’t leave… what’s your name?”

“(Y/N),” you choked out.

“(Y/N),” Strange repeated gently. “You can’t leave. I’m sorry. Hela knows who you are and what you look like, she saw you with Thor and Loki.”

“He’s right,” Thor added with a deep voice. “For all I know she will try and kill you once she gets the chance.”

Of course, he had a point there. Thanks to Karen and Susan, Hela might be thinking you were in on the game. The danger you were in was tangible. Perhaps you should stay the night. Only tonight and then tomorrow, you would make your leave, making sure to find Karen and mourn her sister together. Organising a beautiful funeral to honour her would be the least you could do after this terrible incident—it was, naturally, even more important than your spoiled chance to become a famous journalist one day.

“I will need my brother back.” Thor stated when you said nothing, clearing his throat audibly.

“Oh yeah, right,” With a flick of his fingers, there were eerie orange sparkles spreading on his fingertips again and then, having you flinch and jump aside, the wizard opened a portal on the ceiling through which a yelling Loki fell straight to the hard ground.

“I have been falling… for thirty minutes!” He complained crossly. Panting, he got up on his feet. The situation would have been funny, caused you to giggle even if you hadn’t just escaped death by only a heartbeat.

“Handle me…” He started, eyes narrowing as he fixated Strange. His voice was dangerously low, breathless even when out of thin air, he conjured two razor-sharp daggers. “Who are you? You think you are some kind of sorcerer. Don’t think for one minute you second-rate—“

Loki started at Strange before he had even finished his threat. Maybe it was the adrenaline that was still cursing through your veins and stopping you from collapsing; most of all, however, it made you brave.

“No! No, stop it!” You screamed, blocking his way. Your palms connected with his chest and despite of the nice feeling fabric of his black suit, it felt like trying to fight off a solid rock. The God of Mischief hesitated. Looking down at you in a confused manner, his blue eyes met yours. Whatever he saw in them—fear, exhaustion, desperation—it made him halt.

“No more fighting, I’m fed up with it! I just… I just want to go home!” Tears. Hot, salty and stinging, they worsened your sight. You quickly buried your face in your hands to hide your crying to keep at least some dignity. You should have all right to cry though. You were human, you were no supernatural witch…

“I don’t want anything to do with all of that spooky magic stuff! Life is exhausting enough! I just lost my best friend to a psychotic alien bitch for absolutely no reason!” You shouted out of breath, your words barely comprehensible in between frantic sobs.

“Okay, okay, (Y/N), you need to calm down, you’re having a panic attack.”

Strange was probably right with the amount of oxygen entering your windpipe. Trembling, you let him take a hold of your wrist—it wasn’t like you could have reacted in the first place—in the next moment, your environment once more changed within the twinkling of an eye.

In midst of an old-fashioned room with what looked like ancient furniture, the wizard switched on the lights and led you over to a surprisingly soft and comfortable bed.

“I know this is too much for you right now. It’s no less than what I felt when I first learned about magic and realms and… give yourself some time. Is there anyone you want me to contact for you? Your friend, maybe? She will have alerted the police by now.”

You decided to like the bearded man. His voice was relaxing and comforting and the way he kneeled down to look you in the eye all the while covering one of your hands with his, you felt safe.

It was only then you realised you had lost your bag during the explosion. Your phone, your wallet, your passport, even your car keys… everything was gone. If you did leave tomorrow, without your documents and any money, you wouldn’t even be able to leave the state.

“I… I don’t know Karen’s number by heart.”

“I will find a way to let her know you’re alive. Until then, you should rest. Are you hungry? There’s a bathroom opposite the room, it’s equipped with a first aid box so you can take care of the cut on your forehead. I will have some tea brought up, it will help you sleep.” As soon as he finished his proposal, a tray carrying a silver tea pot and a pretty porcelain mug appeared on your nightstand. It was steaming with a dark liquid, tempting you to taste it.

“Thank you.” You mumbled. For the tea or his comforting words, you did not know.

 

It must have been past midnight by now. The tea hadn’t helped. For hours on end, you had been thrashing around in bed, turning from side to side restlessly, for every time you closed your eyes to sleep, you saw Susan lying on the ground before you. She was reaching out, pleading you to save her instead of running away and stepping through that portal.

The smell of the fresh blood drowning her clothes was so vivid you gagged when your eyes flew open once again. Sweat was running down your back, your knees had turned to jelly and your heart… it seemed to be skipping so many beats you wondered how you were still alive.

You knew you wouldn’t be getting any rest tonight but at least, your tears had dried. You had no energy left to cry and relieve yourself from the grief rioting inside you. Maybe a short walk would take your mind off things and distract you from the gruesome picture that just wouldn’t go away.

Strange had told you not to explore the other rooms on your own and after what you had experienced today, you were fine with listening to his advice. Out of order probably meant hazard of any kind of magical origin. So you simply wandered through the empty hallways barefoot, inspecting the art in the house as you desperately tried not to think about Susan and the fact you would never see her again.

After a while, you came by another closed door, through this one, however, candle light shone to the wooden ground, illuminating a few feet in front of you. Either Doctor Strange, Thor or Loki would be inside the room, clearly not sleeping either, you assumed.

So you entered, making sure to knock quietly before opening the door to peek inside. It was the God of Mischief you spotted lying on the bed, reading a book whose title you couldn’t quite make out from the distance. He had replaced his clothes as well. Instead of the black suit, he was now wearing foreign garments made of green fabric which looked way more comfortable for reading in bed than his previous outfit.

He instantly noticed your presence before you even let the door fall shut behind you. Alarmed, he looked up to meet your tired gaze, his blue eyes sending pleasant shivers up and down your spine. There was something about his eyes… something intriguing.

“I can’t sleep,” you explained before he could open his mouth to dismiss you rudely. There wasn’t much you expected from him, after all. After what you had heard of he had done, you doubted he would show any sympathy for a human girl.

Loki tilted his head. He frowned, his lips parting ever so slightly. “Strange said the door was locked.” He stated wondrously.

Your eyes widened. “No, it was open, I mean, I just…” Grabbing the door knob in an irritated manner, you attempted to open it once more. It didn’t move. Not a smidge.

Oh no.

“It was open.” You corrected, turning around in an apologising manner all the while Loki rolled his eyes. Annoyance, so you figured, was safer than anger. Carefully, you approached his bed. “Why did he lock you in here?” You asked before you gave it a second thought. The answer was clear. Loki was a war criminal—unguarded… what would he do? You had just trapped yourself in this room with a very, very dangerous man. Of course your day was getting even better.

“Strange does not trust me. His sorcery is more advanced than I thought—sloppy but quite affective. I am yet to figure out how to break the spell, though I believe it is the house that blocks most of my magic.” He said, setting his book aside. Now, you had his full attention but whether that was a good or a bad thing, you could not tell.

“You can’t sleep?” He asked then, raising his eyebrows a little. For just a brief moment, you believed there was actual interest flaming up in his eyes, it was, however, quickly replaced by the most inconspicuous hint of mockery. It stung even though you tried not to let it get to you.

“Quite frankly, I will not be sleeping either now that you have so brilliantly locked us in here.”

“You could have told me the door was locked before I closed it, you vengeful idiot!” Dubiously, you usually ran out of cruel insults when you were angry and right now, Loki was provoking you. You were grieving, you were in pain and he… he was distracting you.

Nervously, you scratched the back of your hand, with the God of Mischief tilting his head once more upon seeing your skin turning all red. If you continued like this, you would be bleeding by tomorrow and yet, it felt good to do at least something with your hands.

Loki was staring at you in an almost scrutinising manner. It was like his intimidating glance went right through you.

What you didn’t understand was how you hadn’t just left after seeing Loki in this room. You could have bolted and returned to your own, searching for Strange or Thor instead but for some incomprehensible reason, you had stayed and entered. Again, you were reminded of how there was something about the God of Mischief that intrigued you. If only you knew what it was.

“Can I please just… lie down? I really am exhausted.” There was no point in standing at the edge of his bed any longer anyway. Given you would be locked in here for the rest of the night, you might as well make the best out of the situation. Perhaps now, you would even fall asleep.

Loki was dangerous and unpredictable, this much you were very well aware of, however, with him by your side… you felt oddly protected.

Watching him nod mutely and biting back another scornful remark to express his plain annoyance, you slid under the warm bed sheets all the while remembering how he had attempted to lunge at Strange today. What had induced him to listen to you? Was it compassion? Pity?

“Good night, Loki.” You whispered, sighing quietly before turning to face the wall. When he replied nothing in return, you simply forced your eyes shut. Despite the dim light in the room, it took you in fact only a couple of minutes to fall into a relatively peaceful slumber.

Chapter Text

When you woke up the next morning, the space to your right was empty, the bed unmade. Loki was gone. Bright sunlight shone into the room, illuminating the elegant furniture in the room. It all came crashing down on you then, like heavy rocks burying you underneath their weight.

Hela. Susan. Karen. Your job interview. Stephen Strange, Thor, Loki… uncountable thoughts were tumbling around in your head, making your brain all fuzzy and stealing away your balance when you first threw back your covers and stood.

Expecting the worst, you tried for the door and let out a relieved sigh when it opened, tiptoeing barefoot through the hallways. There was no way you would be finding your way back to your own room. You decided to get your shoes later.

Following the voices coming from downstairs, you soon found a large kitchen area. You blushed upon realising you had slept the longest.

“Good morning, (Y/N). How have you slept?” Strange asked cordially, gesturing for you to take a seat at the vast kitchen table. Loki was there too. He was dressed in his black suit yet again, his expression severe and unimpressed. Briefly, your eyes locked with his and for the first time since you first met, he looked away first.

Strange’s question confused you as you sat down at the opposite end of the table to bring about as much distance between the God of Mischief and you as possible. So he had not told them about your nightly visit and your most unfortunate mishap that had forced you to spend the night together.

“I… g-good. Surprisingly good,” you murmured honestly, watching how a plate full of scrambled eggs, toast and tomatoes appeared before you while at the same time, frantically avoiding Loki’s intent gaze.

“Karen knows you’re alright by the way. She’s with her parents in New Jersey right now and the police is aware you are staying with me, so you won’t be in any trouble once you leave.”

Once you leave. You still harboured the wish to do exactly that today, right after breakfast. Instead of complaining, however, you chose to invest your energy for a hopefully successful escape. You nodded gratefully.

“So, Thor, you say once you find your father, all parties involved will promptly return to Asgard?”

“Promptly,” the God of Thunder reinforced, smiling at the wizard.

“Great. Then I will help you. He is in Norway.”

“Norway? Why would he go to Norway?” You tossed in, looking at your plate rather disgusted. In spite of your stomach complaining, you had no appetite whatsoever. You didn’t even want to touch that cup of coffee Strange had set on the table for you.

“Thor can ask him that himself. I will need a strand of your hair, then I can create a portal that will lead you two right to him. Take this with you.” Despite his incredulousness, he handed Loki a strangely shaped ring.

“And then what happens to me in the meantime?” Crossing your arms in a defiant manner, you leaned back, trying to hide your shaking fingers.

“You stay here with me, (Y/N). As long as Hela is out there, your life is in danger. You are free to go as soon as she’s gone.”

Disappointment spread in your body. So he was intending to keep you here for an even longer period of time than just a couple of days. Strange was a likeable man, his company would be bearable to say the least but without Thor and Loki around, it would be, in fact, strange.

The two of them were the reason you had gotten into this horrible shemozzle in the first place. And Loki would be gone. Why on Earth would you bother if Loki would be gone?

“I object.” You muttered quietly, taking a deep breath to remain calm. What made it even worse was that you could practically feel Loki’s hypnotising blue eyes on you. It urged you to scratch the back of your hand.

Strange shot you a compassionate look before turning back to Thor to discuss details. If anything happened, so they concluded, Loki could open a portal with the ring Strange had given him so they could bring Odin back safely and flee and then, within mere moments, they were gone, having stepped through an orange portal leading to an open landscape in the heart of Norway.

“How’s your forehead?”

A weak pounding reminded you of the healing cut on your head. You had already forgotten about it.

“Fine, I suppose.”

“Good. Let me know if you need someone to take a closer look at it.”

He sighed when you said nothing, didn’t even look him in the eye.

“I’m sorry this happened to you, (Y/N) but you really should eat something.” Strange proposed when you gave your food another disgusted glance.

“I’m not hungry.”

“At least drink some water then.”

Gnashing your teeth, you started to scratch the back of your hand. Drink some water. As if drinking some water would help you deal with all of this. As if drinking some water would stop this madness.

“I just want to go home,” you whispered barely audible, adding a sigh. There was an unpleasant headache creeping up your skull, making you massage your temples. “I never wanted to be part of any of this.”

“I know. I trust Thor to take care of Hela. I’m sure you can leave soon. There is nothing personal about—“

“Susan is dead because of Hela.” You interrupted. “Of course, it is personal, Stephen. And I hope Thor and Loki will kick her bloody arse and send her back to wherever the hell she came from.”

Strange nodded. “Helheim. She came straight from Helheim, that’s all I know.”

Helheim. What was that? Hell? Was Hela Satan? His wife or daughter? For all you knew, she could be. You wanted her suffering and you wanted her dead, even if you had to be the one to bring about her demise.

You almost gasped at your wrathful thoughts and you realised only then that your grief had been replaced by a burning, gloating anger boiling up deep in your stomach. It felt good to be angry, way better than to be sad and terrified, though with your mere self-defence skills, you had but your spiteful words.

You spend the next hour forcing the eggs down your throat. Much to your surprise, they tasted abnormally delicious and with every bite you took, your appetite came back. Soon, you had emptied the whole plate, earning you an approved nod by Strange. Only when you watched in awe how the cutlery and the dishes disappeared from the table and had him summon your shoes for you, he suddenly frowned.

“What? What is it?”

“Something’s not right…”

“What do you mean?”

“They’re in trouble. Hela must have found them, I can feel Loki trying to use the ring.” Fear flooded your body, your blood running ice cold. You had seen her fight before but now, Stephen Strange was here with you.

If she harmed them, then… where was that biting sorrow coming from? You should be scared for your own life and mourning your best friend but instead, you dreaded what could happen to Thor and most of all Loki—and that after how distastefully he had treated you yesterday night!

“I’m gonna help them. You stay here exactly where you are, so I can—“

The orange portal opened right before him, the impact knocking him into the kitchen counter while at the same time, you jumped up from your seat so forcefully the wooden chair crashed to the ground audibly.

Hela had found them. Her crude smile was horrifying when she stepped through the portal and studied her new surroundings interestedly. The ring Loki had used had slipped under the kitchen table, the man who had used it himself was stumbling to his feet as graceful as he could muster, quickly followed by Thor who, clenching his fists, turned around angrily to fight the intruder.

“Bring us back!” Loki shouted up to the ceiling. He sounded frightened, triggering your own fear. If the God of Mischief was afraid… Bring us back? Where to?

“No!” Thor roared.

Bright light came smashing through the ceiling, ripping apart several floors in the process. It formed a circle right around the area Thor, Loki, Hela and you were standing before a strong invisible force pulled you off the ground and sucked you up into the sky.

Ice cold air flushed past you, the colours of the rainbow blinding you as you flew, higher and higher. It felt like all air was being pressed out of your body, making you nauseous and dizzy. Panicking, you looked around you, spotting Loki a few feet underneath your own form.

“Loki!” You yelled, barely able to properly open your mouth to shout. Perhaps he was a war criminal but whatever was happening in this very moment, you were not supposed to be here, that you were sure of—he had to help you, somehow, anyhow!

Growling mutely, Loki turned his head around to face you, endeavour glistening in his blue eyes. He seemed to stomp his foot then—and within a matter of seconds, he was next to you, allowing you to wrap your arms around his middle. Cool leather pressed against your cheek, filling your nostrils with a sharp but alluring scent as you squeezed your eyes shut tightly, hoping this terrible ride would end soon.

It did even sooner than you anticipated. Reluctantly, you opened your eyes again in the hopes of finding Thor in the bright chaos of colours but not matter how hard you tried, you were unable to lift your head. Instead, you looked down, sensing how Loki’s muscles clenched when he flung a dagger down at a very enraged Goddess of Death. She dodged it easily and then threw one of her own swords at the God of Mischief in return.

You screamed when you realised that it would kill you both, closed your eyes again to die seeing peaceful darkness instead of this ferocious monster beneath you but the painful intrusion of a pointy blade never came.

Loki ducked just in time, pulling you with him as the impact of the bright light scattered around him and sent him flying through the cosmos. Pain shot through your body, the firm jerk rippling through your limbs like jolts of electricity and then, after what felt like minutes of falling, you clunked to the ground, your nails digging into moist earth and pieces of debris and litter.

It took you a while to manage to breathe again, forcing yourself not to get lost in another panic attack as you rolled off Loki, who had, fortunately, absorbed most of your fall and checked your body for any injuries. Your left elbow felt like it was sprained, other than that, however, you were fine.

Loki moaned as he propped himself up, taking a suspicious look around himself before locking eyes with you.

“Are you alright?” He asked, surprising you with his sudden care. Even if you wanted to, you were incapable of responding in a full sentence.

“Physically,” you stated out of breath, your voice shaking along with your trembling body as you followed his example and examined the place you had landed on.

You came to one conclusion. This was not Earth anymore.

Chapter Text

Thor fell from the sky like a poor little bird that had lost its wings. He rose from the dirty ground only a few feet away from Loki and you—his eyes darkened visibly, his fingertips crackling with what looked like surging blue electricity.

“Brother…” Loki started insecurely.

“This was your doing!” He roared. He was going to lunge at him, you could practically feel the tension between them when Thor took a threatening step forward. You didn’t exactly know what Loki had done to anger the God of Thunder this much but if they killed each other now, things—wherever they stood—would get even worse.

“Will you two stop fighting for just a minute?!” You shrieked, panting. “Where are we?!” With a start, your voice grew more anxious. “This doesn’t look like… like Earth.”

“It is not,” Loki confirmed. He was surprisingly calm for someone who just had just flown through an unknown part of space to land on foreign territory. It probably wasn’t the first time he ended up in an unpleasant situation like this.

“No, it’s not, we’re stranded and it’s your fault, you foul—“

“Thor, shut up! What happened?” Naturally, you had absolutely no reason to defend the God of Mischief, it was what you tried to convince yourself of when he frowned in surprise. The thought of Thor breaking his jaw, however, was oddly unbearable.

“What happened? He killed our father, that’s what happened! Hela on the loose, Asgard in danger and it is all your fault!” He yelled enraged, attracting the attention of a few cloaked and masked figures camping on a hill. You discovered them just then. Whoever they were, they did not seem friendly—and now, they were heading towards you curiously, their weapons, which looked like strangely shaped swords and guns, raised, ready for attack.

“Thor, I’m sure there’s an explanation for all of this but we should… run.” You said as peacefully as possible. Whether you failed, you could not tell but right there, Loki noticed the hostile inhabitants of this funny place too and clearly, he did not trust them either.

“I do not run, I will fight whoever dares to—“

Thor paused, remembering with a start when he stretched out his right hand to call for his hammer, that it was gone, destroyed by the Goddess of Death.

“Thor, we must go!” Loki urged him on energetically. At this point, you didn’t even care they called him the Trickster. You followed him like a blind and helpless puppy, almost reaching for his hand when you stumbled over a rusty piece of machinery.

Thor only reluctantly joined you when you disappeared behind one of the many massive hills of trash and debris, looking for a place to hide. Loki found it soon after. What resembled a cave and towered up into the sky like a vast mountain made of grey and brown rock, you took shelter inside what used to be some kind of spaceship. A few of the leather seats were still intact, other than that, however, everything had been utterly destroyed and torn apart. At least the furniture was clean—a little dusty maybe—but other than that, bearable. It would do until you found a way to leave this eerie place again.

“This is ridiculous, I am going to find us a way back now.” Thor growled impatiently, not even bothering to sit down and rest for a while. You, on the other hand, were in desperate need of a break. Travelling by what you assumed must have been the infamous Bifrost from Norse Mythology, had taken its toll on you, especially after falling right out of it to mercilessly be hurled through the universe.

The fact you had involuntarily accompanied them in the first place didn’t seem to affect the brothers at all. Now that you had shut your mouth and crawled into a corner, they even ceased to acknowledge your presence.

“Thor, listen to reason. If you go on a rampage now and demand a free ride back to Asgard, these people, whoever they are, will most likely execute you. This is not on Midgard.” Loki mooted, still careful about how to behave around the Thunderer. One wrong word, so you figured, and he would explode.

“You both stay here.” Loki ordered thoughtfully. “I am going to explore the place. Surely, someone here is responsible. I will get us out of here. Leave it to me.” He winked at you confidently when you looked up with a worried frown. Your heart skipped a beat upon the gesture, causing you to lean back against the metal wall of the cave-like shelter. His god-damn eyes…

“Loki, don’t you dare leaving n—“ The God of Mischief disappeared in a shimmer of green light before Thor even had a chance to fling a piece of debris at him. It flew right through him, making him scream out in hot anger that vibrated through the whole cave and made you shiver.

Thor’s rage was understandable but what choice did you have other than to pray that Loki was indeed going to find you help? You had read about his silver tongue. If Loki was as skilled with words as you believed he was… could you trust him enough to get you all back to Earth alive? Your breathing quickened.

Heaven, what had you gotten yourself into? Scratching the back of your hand so fiercely you drew blood, you thought about your spoiled job interview and the tense cab ride with Susan and Karen yesterday afternoon. Susan who was now dead. All of that… had it all really happened only less than twenty-four hours ago?! This was madness, it was insane! Moaning, you buried your face in your hands, your fingers shaking.

“(Y/N)!”

Then, everything went black.


“Why not? This place is not so bad after all.” His voice was so smooth, so alluring and… almost… yes… it was seductive. Blinking tiredly, you opened your eyes only to realise you must have fallen asleep. How on Earth was this possible? With all the excitement, the fear and the panic pumping through your very veins, how had your body been able to claim a few hours of peace? “Don’t worry, brother. I have this all worked out.”

“Loki, we need to get back to Asgard now, we need to stop Hela before it’s too late.”

“And then do what? Our sister…” Loki paused. “…destroyed your hammer like a piece of glass. She is stronger than both of us. How would you think for even one second that we could still save Asgard or its people? You’re not seriously thinking of going back, are you?”

“What are you saying, that we do nothing and stay here on Sakaar?!” Thor stood, the noise of leather rubbing against clothing items gave him away. You stretched, suppressing a yawn. You didn’t want to be caught eavesdropping but then again, whatever the two of them were discussing, if it involved getting back home, it was your business too.

Sakaar. Was this what this place was called?

“If we both want a chance to survive, then yes, that is what I’m saying.”

“Y-you want to stay? What about me?” You tossed in nervously, wrapping your arms around yourself to fight the cold. It had crept up your limbs when you woke up, tickling your skin and creating goose bumps all over it.

“(Y/N), are you alright?” Thor said. “You passed out, I had to catch you before you collapsed to the ground.”

“I did what?” So you hadn’t slept after all. You had had another panic attack and simply fainted. Shit. How long had you been out? According to the eerie darkness outside when you shot a glance over to the entrance to the cave… for several hours.

“You wouldn’t wake up, so I lay you down and checked for your pulse every hour.”

“Thanks.” You muttered, massaging your temples. “So… Loki… c-could you… I mean, find out where exactly we are?”

“Indeed I could. The planet we are on is called Sakaar, it is some kind of collecting void for things that get lost in the vastness of space. I met the man who owns this place. He is… a lunatic but he will come in handy. It will take me a while to gain his trust.”

“So you can get us back?” Your eyes lit up, hope spreading in your chest. It almost loosened the right knot Susan’s death and the constant fear inside you had entangled there.

“Not exactly. Tomorrow, I have an appointment with the Grandmaster’s finest tailor.”

Scoffing, you narrowed your eyes. “Really? Getting new clothes, is that really a priority right now?!”

“We will need to blend in if my plan is supposed to work out, little minx. You would be well advised to do the same.”

Little minx.

“What plan? What plan of yours, Loki?” Thor roared.

Little minx. Why would he call you that? It was hard to tell if he was mocking you or simply using a tender nickname. You… doubted it would be the latter.

“In time, brother, the Grandmaster will, perhaps, befall an accident and then you and me…” He raised his thumbs, his lips pressed together to a thin line.

“Who is this Grandmaster?”

“He… kind of runs this place,”

“Loki, no. I will not play your games any longer.”

“Of course not, why would you? I guess I will just have to do it alone, you know. Like I’ve always done.”

A painful expression washed over your face, making you frown. Why was it so easy to feel compassion for this man when he said things like that? You didn’t even know him.

“Loki, I want to leave too.” You said gently, forcing your voice to sound strong.

Thor simply ignored you. “I can’t believe it, we have been here for a few hours and you already have thoughts about ruling this place yourself, do you even hear yourself, brother? You cannot be selfless just for once?”

“What did I do on Svartalfheim to protect your petty mortal girlfriend?!” Loki yelled. You flinched when he suddenly raised his voice, biting your lower lip.

What had happened on Svartalfheim? The Edda spoke of dark elves when it came to this realm, and you had heard of the incident in Greenwich. You didn’t know Loki had been there too.

“Then do what you did for Jane for our own people!” Thor demanded, clenching his fists.

“To what end?!” They were both screaming now, eliciting a scared whimper from you. If they continued like this, the scavengers—at least that’s what they looked like—would find you before the moon rose to its peak. If this planet had a moon in the first place, that was.

“M-m-maybe w-w-we should try to sleep a little, there isn’t much we can do right now, especially when it’s dark outside and you two fighting won’t get us anywhere either.” You managed to choke out, hoping your voice wasn’t shaking too much when you spoke.

All of your bones were aching and complaining anyway, the weakening state of unconsciousness not having helped you to recover at all.

“She is right. I would appreciate lying down for a while too.” Loki stated, pursing his lips in a superior manner.

“Fine. Go rest, (Y/N). I do the watch, it’s way too quiet out here.”

“Yes, about that…” Loki began when you lay down on two of the battered leather seats, using your jacket as a blanket.  “Mind those scavengers. They capture strays and sell them to the Grandmaster as gladiators or slaves.”

Your eyes widened. Slaves. You needed to get off this planet.


 

 

About an hour passed until you woke up again from your light slumber, panting heavily as you did. Your face was wet, your eyes were burning. Had you been crying in your sleep?

A sob escaped your lips, the ache in your chest clouding your mind. It took you a moment to orientate yourself but when you did, only a stone’s throw away, you found Loki, lying comfortably on a couple of old leather seats which he had converted to a provisory bed.

“Then I guess I will have to do it alone, you know. Like I always do.”

The déjà-vu of yesterday night flooded your brain.

“I can come with you tomorrow,” you suddenly heard yourself whispering, using the sleeves of your jacket to dry the last of your tears. Loki took a deep breath.

“You will get yourself killed, little minx.”

There it was again. Little minx. So he was awake too. Perhaps he had even heard you crying.

“It’s short of a miracle I’m alive now, if I were to die, it would have happened already.” You countered defiantly. “I’m done with being treated like a poor and defenceless child and I am certainly not going to root here in this broken plane until you decide it might be time to go home.”

If you were to fight Loki… no, you wouldn’t stand a chance, not in a million years and not even with your self-defence skills. The God of Mischief turned around to face you. His blue eyes met yours, freezing you in place.

“Look, I am not very keen on having landed here as well. I don’t know how to get away from here yet but for now, I believe it might be a good idea to simply stay. I have seen how the… upper class people live in this place and it does not repel me.” He hissed.

You swallowed thickly. “So Thor is right? All you ever care about is saving your own skin? To think that I was actually worried for you when you went to Norway through that spooky portal...”

Loki frowned. He seemed almost confused but as were you. Now that you had admitted it, it felt even more off. This wasn’t right, definitely not. Loki seemed to share your opinion.

“He’s your brother!” You continued quickly. “Maybe I’m not that important but your home—Asgard—it is. Hela killed one of my best friends and she was an innocent. What will she do to your home planet then?”

Talking to him calmed you down, it felt like yesterday night. He had an inexplicable talent for distracting you from the dull ache in your heart, even if he triggered your anger.

“Asgard is all but lost already. The sooner Thor realises that, the sooner he will listen to reason.” He simply said.

You paused, considering his words.

“What did he mean by… you killed your father?”

The God of Mischief sighed. He was very well aware by now that you were merely curious, attempting to understand him. It had been a while since anyone had tried to do that and it was a nice change for once, even if usually, he praised the fact he could not be riddled.

“I did not kill him. I banished him to Earth after erasing his memories with a spell but he managed to break free from it.”

“Why a-and… and how? They said you were locked away in Asgard, expiating in a prison cell for what you did in New York.”

A smirk crept up on his lips, quickening your breathing. His damn eyes were sparkling mischievously in the dim light, promising tricks and charming words. It was irksome how you reacted this intensely to him after learning he was indeed a very selfish god, admitting himself he would rather stay on Sakaar than help his own people.

“That I did.” He went on. “Until Thor freed me because he was in desperate need for my help.” He explained triumphantly. “After that, he remained on Earth, believing I had died in Svartalfheim and I was free to claim the throne.”

“You mean…”

“Yes, little minx, I am, as of now, the rightful king of Asgard.”

Swallowing again, you looked up at him.

“If you are, then tell me what kind of king leaves his own people behind? Aren’t you supposed to protect the nine realms?” You said it because it was the right thing to say. What Loki did was wrong, in a way but somehow…

“What am I supposed to do?” He spat through gritted teeth. “You have seen with your own eyes what Hela is capable of. By now, and until we find a way back, Asgard will be in ruins already.”

You replied nothing to that. You hated to admit it but Loki had a point. What would you do in his shoes? Surely, you wouldn’t dare to take on Hela alone, you would try and hide yourself, to survive by any means necessary. Yes, you concluded. You… you agreed with him.

“Alright,”

“What?”

“I said alright. But you can’t stop Thor from trying to defeat Hela.”

“I know.”

“Will you help me get back home?” It wasn’t a question, not really. You were sleepy already and glad for Loki’s presence this close to you. It lured you into believing you were safe, at least for this very moment. Shortly before your eyes fell shut and you drifted off, you imagined him saying Yes. I promise.

Chapter Text

Loki was still reluctant of letting you join him to meet that tailor he had been speaking of but unless he could magically let water and food appear in front of you, he would be confronted with how stubborn you could be. You hadn’t eaten or drunk anything since the morning at Strange’s house, shortly before Hela had attacked yet again and unlike the two gods you were stranded with, you would be dehydrating a lot quicker.

“You know I can bring you some food here.” He said in an annoyed manner when you followed him outside, demanding once more to come with him. “You will only cause me more trouble than you are worth.”

Your lips parted. That stung, though you had phrased it yourself—you were not that important. Silently, you looked up at him, attempting to convince him with a single, desperate glance. It had worked before when he tried to snuff the very man who had saved you from Hela so perhaps, it would be working now too.

Loki sighed, closing his eyes for just a moment as if he was trying to keep up an act.

“You let me do the talking. Do not open that pretty little mouth of yours unless I give you a sign, is that understood? And don’t wander off.”

“Loki, you will not take her with you. It’s too dangerous.” Thor interrupted. He entered the broken plane with a grumpy expression on his face, his lips pursed.

“I have not made the decision.” The God of Mischief countered, suppressing a mocking smirk. He knew Thor couldn’t forbid you to explore the planet yourself. Strange had tried to keep you in his house and frankly, he had failed. Hopefully, this was a good idea, after all. You doubted Loki would go to your rescue if you screwed up.

“I will be fine, Thor. My mother always said it’s better to face your fears than to run away from them.” You doubted she had ever been on a different planet.

The God of Thunder gnashed his teeth, staring daggers at his brother. “I will be trying to reach out to Heimdall.” There was an audible judgement in his voice when he spoke, turning his back to you to face the broken window of the plane wreck.

“Good luck with that.” Loki responded sarcastically, heading towards the collection of vast buildings that stretched out about a mile away. They were strange constellations and unlike anything you had ever seen on Earth when you followed him across the disgusting mountains of debris and dirt. You realised only then that you were in fact, surrounded by what resembled a city. The colours of the rainbow blinded your eyes as you followed Loki through the streets, passing more and more scavengers that shot you greedy and incredulous looks.

This place was so… awfully strange. The colours, the people… it seemed like thousands of species and cultures clustered together on one planet where there was chaos, no order and no law. You didn’t exactly know who this Grandmaster Loki had mentioned was but you doubted he would be a very reasonable fellow.

Swallowing thickly, you resisted the urge to reach for Loki’s hand and kept as close to him as possible until you entered the Grandmaster’s house.

“And you are?” He was… orange. His skin was orange. Crudely, the guard crossed his arms before his chest, blocking the hallway.

“King Loki,” the God of Mischief stated smugly. “Of Asgard. The Grandmaster awaits me.”

“Well, get in then. He hates tardiness. Who is that?” Almost disgusted, the orange man pointed at you. He was the one talking. At least your skin didn’t glow in the dark.

“Is the Grandmaster awaiting her too?”

“Not exactly,” Loki began but the guard cut him off.

“Well, if she’s not, she’s to stay put. The Grandmaster doesn’t allow any stray dogs in his place.”

“Stray dogs? Are you kidding me? Listen well, you orange little fu—“

Scoffing, Loki suddenly grabbed your wrist so tightly you winced from his sheer strength, making you shut your mouth instantly. He laughed uncomfortably.

“I understand. I shall pick her up after.” Then, he turned to you, growling quietly so the orange man could not hear his words. “Have I not told you to shut your mouth? You stay exactly where you are and do not move until I come back to get you.”

“Excuse me?! I thought you gained the Grandmaster’s favour! I want to come with you, I’m starving and I’m thirsty!” You hissed. “Did you think I came here for amusement?! Because I can ensure you, I am not amused.”

Stay where you are, little minx,” he threatened darkly. “I will come and get you as soon as I can. Now… can we leave?” He asked the orange man, louder this time.

Glaring angrily at the two of them, you watched him nod and lead Loki to a metal gull-wing door around the corner. They disappeared and you stood there, all alone on a foreign planet with about nothing to defend yourself, cursing yourself for trusting the God of Mischief. You should have known. You should have bloody known!

For about thirty minutes, you sat there on the floor with crossed legs, curled up in the hopes no one would pass by and rocking back and forth slowly. You were close to getting another panic attack and with every second that Loki was gone, you freaked out more.

“The last one only brought me five-thousand units. I’m telling ya, the Grandmaster’s getting picky with what we bring him.”

Footsteps. Voices. There was more than one person approaching you in the long and dimly lit hallway, making you jump up with shaking hands. Hide! Hide! All of your instincts screamed for you to find a cover but other than endless walls and that stupid gull-wing door, there was not much this damn house offered.

“Well look at that!” One of the man shouted, a shit-eating grin revealing a row of brown teeth. Breathing in and out slowly, you fought to hold back your gag reflex.

“Who are you?”

“I… uh… I am… I am…”

“A stray!” He concluded triumphantly, raising his fist high up in the air. “Such a pretty girl. You’ll make a good slave.”

Your blood ran ice cold. Slave. Slave?! Quickly, you pondered your options. Run? No, where to? They would find you sooner or later and even if they didn’t, you would get lost. Fight them? There were three of them. With two men, you might stand a chance, knowing how to place a blow to knock all air out of someone’s body but three? They would subdue you in mere seconds.

Thinking frantically, you took a step back when they started to stroll towards you, a disgusting hunger glistening in their eyes.

“I belong to Loki!” You screamed then, clenching your fists defiantly. Your eyes narrowed. “I belong to King Loki. You better keep your hands off me. He does not like it when people touch his property.”

Smart move, you complimented yourself, taking a deep breath. Crazy bitch!

“Loki?” One of the men repeated dumbfounded.

“He’s the Grandmaster’s guest.” Another explained. “King of a realm, this… Asmart, Astart, Asfart…”

“Asgard,” You corrected, lifting your chin.

“Yeah that. You know, we should take her with us. Just to be sure. I mean, she made it to the Grandmaster’s house without permission, he should know about this… lack of security, if you get my saying. He might even reward us if he’s in a good mood.”

The two other men chuckled—it sounded, to be fair, crazy. Not for a second did you doubt that they were.

“No! I am to wait here for the king! Stop it!”

You struggled fiercely when they wrapped their dirty hands around your upper arms, almost lifting you off the ground and leaving you kicking around helplessly. You even managed to hit one of the men in the shin but fairly, it did nothing. They aren’t human, of course. A mortal man would have screamed in pain, your blows were all but gentle, your self-defence teacher had made sure of that.

So your wild thrashing was all in vain when they dragged you through the gull-wing door Loki had stepped through only thirty minutes ago. A vast room presented itself to you, with a comfortable looking set of colourful leather couches right in the middle of it, surrounded by fluffy carpets. The walls were made of glass—giant windows that offered a marvellous view over… the litter. Beautiful.

Guards were standing mutely in the corners, staring sternly into thin air. You recognised the orange man from earlier and concluded that in the middle of the room—with an oddly interested sparkling in his eyes—sat the Grandmaster. A yellow cloak emphasised his height and grey hair, a straight stripe of blue colour decorating his chin. If this was considered beauty and make-up here on Sakaar, you suddenly started appreciating the compulsion to always look “on fleek” in New York. Mascara was way more bearable compared to this.

Loki was sitting right next to him. His clothing had changed, the green garments replaced by black leather, a yellow cape and blue accents on the fabric. Much to your surprise, the colours suited him well. Loki was a man who could practically wear anything and still look gorgeously handsome in it. His lips were parted slightly when he recognised you, unsure of whether he should let the Grandmaster see that he knew you.

“I’m sorry for disturbin’. We found this one in your hallway, Grandmaster.” The scavenger snarled. Blue eyes met your own. I told you so, you tried to tell him. You shouldn’t have left me all alone.

“When we tried to take her, she claimed to be King Loki’s slave already.” Instantly, his head shot up, alarmed.

“Oh my, you brought your own pet?” The Grandmaster exclaimed, grinning like a lunatic. “My friend, we will be getting along really well.”

“Yes…” Loki mumbled, looking you straight in the eye. You could tell he wanted to strangle you for this. “I believe so too. As I was saying, can I just say it is an honour to be considered a friend? I thought my kingdom was great but here on Sakaar, I cannot help but be astonished by what you have built yourself here.”

“Oh, don’t flatter me! Bring her closer, let her sit at Loki’s feet, I don’t mind. You’re in interesting man, Loki. Very interesting indeed,”

Without forewarning, you were yanked forward once more until you stood only mere inches from them, the two men pushing you on your knees roughly. God, this was humiliating but… better than being dead or sold as a slave, mind you.

Loki leaned down immediately.

“What were you thinking?!” He hissed, whispering.

“I panicked, I didn’t know what else to say!”

The God of Mischief rolled his eyes before turning back to the Grandmaster. “I decided I would leave her outside, for I wasn’t exactly sure you would take kindly in the presence of a lower-ranked being.” He went on, smirking once more. If you brought your fist down to his foot, would it hurt him? Probably not. Quietly, you growled.

“So very considerate! For how long have you had her?” Apparently, slaves were a topic the Grandmaster was widely interested in and Loki, enjoying the power it gave him, was only all too happy to make up juicy details. With every word that left his thin lips, he started another lie, playing along with what you had started in the first place.

“Not too long, actually. She is very exciting company, however. Would you mind bringing her something to drink? Water, perhaps? It brings, unfortunately, one disadvantage to keep a mortal for your amusement.”

“Ah!” The Grandmaster snapped his fingers. Instantly, one of the guards rushed away to get you what Loki had asked for.

Oh dear God, thank you! Sighing, you moistened your lips with the tip of your tongue, imagining how the cool water would run down your throat and freshen up your senses.

“A mortal you say! They are so rare here on Sakaar. Mortals are so… so sensitive. Listen here, Loki, I host regular orgies in one of my most impressive space ships, the Commodore. Would you, perhaps, be interested in sharing her? I can guarantee you, you would enjoy it a lot, you’re in fact very welcome to join!”

Your eyes widened. With your heart in your mouth, you bit your tongue when you took the glass of water one of the guards handed you, forcing yourself not to lash out. Helplessly, you sought out Loki’s gaze. He returned it for only a brief second.

“I don’t usually share my property, if you don’t mind. Mortals are… easily broken.”

“No, no, of course not, I agree with you.” The Grandmaster nodded, pausing. “So, Loki, how long are you planning to stay?”

“I do intend to stay for a while—only of course, if I am welcome.”

The Grandmaster let out a short, hysteric laugh. “I don’t have royal company often, I like that! I will provide you with your own quarters, how about that?”

“There is no need for any additional effort…” Loki started, slowly luring him right to where he wanted him. You were impressed by the God of Mischief’s ability to play with words; a true Trickster—despite your embarrassing kneeling position right now.

“Oh no, no, no, please, I insist, I insist. Your pet, would you like to keep her in your room? I must confess, our cells are completely overcrowded at the moment.”

Loki’s eyes, once more, drifted over to your form next to his seat. Don’t you dare.  “She will stay with me.”

“Excellent. There are no locks, shall I provide you with a collar for the nights?”

“Why not,” he mumbled through gritted teeth so quietly only you could hear it, once more expressing his dismay about your little white lie. “Thank you. But she is very well trained and obedient. I trust her not to run.”

The Grandmaster clapped his hands. “Tell me your secret! So, Loki, do you keep her as your servant only or do you use her for your pleasure as well?” Leaning forward, his eyes widened to hear his reply. You felt like throwing up.

“Occasionally,” Loki smirked mischievously. Fucking arsehole. You already dreaded the worst. “She might be quiet now but she certainly knows how to use that pretty little mouth of hers well.”

You almost spitted out the greedy gulp of water you were attempting to swallow.

“Oh yeah, perhaps she can teach one of mine, how does that sound? I am sure she would be thrilled to share her talents, isn’t that right?” The Grandmaster grinned, imagining the lie Loki had conjured out of thin air in his mind. At least you hoped it was a lie. Yet once again you bit your tongue and said nothing.

“She certainly won’t be going anywhere.” He replied, smiling sweetly. This time you actually kicked him, acting as innocent and inconspicuous as possible. Loki didn’t even flinch.

“No one leaves this place, eh?”

“Oh, about that, I was wondering whether there were, in fact, any convenient ways out of here. I have to admit, your hospitality flatters me and I would like to return the favour someday. Asgard has treasures of which most beings can only dream of—I would gladly present you some of those items as a gesture of my gratitude. Surely, they would enrich this planet’s wealth.”

Damn. He really did possess a silver tongue. Subtly, and without raising any suspicion, he would get the Grandmaster to tell him everything he wanted. Loki was charming—he could have all the women in the room, including you, and even the men, falling to his feet if he wanted to.

“That sounds wonderful! You see, the planet is surrounded by gateways. Yeah, the big one we call the Devil’s Anus. But before you leave, you have to watch my gladiators fight. The contest of champions is what I am most proud of here, you will love it!”

Loki nodded, pretending to show interest—or perhaps he really was. After all, he did intend to stay but then again, why had he asked the Grandmaster about the gateways? For Thor? For… you?

It was then the metal doors of the gull-wing door opened for a third time, now revealing a confident woman with a beautiful face, gorgeous lips, brown skin and dark hair. The armour she wore made her look powerful and intimidating. Jealousy washed over you as you checked her out from head to toe, deciding in the twinkling of an eye that you did not like her.

“Ah! Scrapper 142! Here, meet my guest. This is… uh, this is Loki. King Loki from… from Asgard.”

Scrapper. So this was what those filthy scavengers were called. Of course she had to be the one who shone out. Loki leaned forward, mustering her quietly and when their eyes met, you almost broke the glass of water in your hands. And what was up with those ridiculous white stripes on her face? If she liked dressing up as a zebra, she would be better off in a zoo.

God, how pathetic did you have to look with your dirty clothes, kneeling at Loki’s feet?

“Asgard?”

“Yeah, isn’t that where you’re from?”

Loki raised his eyebrows. “Is it?”

“It was a long time ago,” the girl replied unaffected. Who was she? Did she recognise him? No, she was merely shocked to have met another Asgardian and clearly, she was not pleased with that.

“Scrapper 142 is the best. She always brings me the best contenders.” The Grandmaster explained, eliciting a forced smile from the dark-skinned girl. She hadn’t paid any attention to you yet and quite frankly, you hoped it would remain that way. You’d had enough humiliation for today.

“Is that so?” Loki mused. He was still staring at her. What was so special about her, for Fuck’s sake and, much more importantly, why did you care if he liked what he saw?

“Oh yes. It seems like she knows exactly which lost soul that ends up here on my planet can fight. It made her rich. She brought me my beloved champion, you know.”

Great, so she was smart, skilled and successful. Gnashing your teeth, you took another sip of your water.

“So what do you need, Scrapper 142?”

“I wanted to speak with you but I see you’re busy, I can come back later.”

“No, no, no! It’s fine, we were done for today anyway. Loki, if you need anything else, let my employees know. They will show you to your room and later bring dinner for you and your little pet.”

Finally. You would so kick his arse now.

The Grandmaster stood, quickly followed by Loki who, tilting his head, indicated to you to do the same. You tried to kill him with a single glance when you did, fawning after him like an obedient puppy when one of the guards led him out of the room and through the hallway to what resembled empty quarters.

It was breath-taking. A giant king-size bed dominated the studio apartment, the large windows displaying the horizon. The furniture—new and modern—complimented the fluffy carpet on the floor and the attached bathroom had an actual whirlpool in addition to a shower, with more buttons and functions than any facility on Earth could ever offer.

As soon as the door fell shut behind you and the guard disappeared, you turned around, exploding.

“Was that really necessary? Making me your bloody whore?”

“Oh, I am sorry, should I not have said that? You brought this to yourself, little minx.” He gnarled. His voice was dripping with mockery.

“Would you stop calling me that?!” You snapped. “I am not little, this was your fault! You were the one who just left me there all alone, they were going to sell me as a slave, for Fuck’s sake, what was I supposed to say? I don’t have supernatural fighting skills like you do!”

“In any case I should have concealed you!” He yelled, shaking his head in the process. “If I had known you are too stupid to hide or at least come up with a proper excuse for your presence!”

I am stupid?! I was freaking out, you selfish prick!”

Taking a deep breath, you massaged your temples until automatically, you reached for your hand to scratch the back of it frantically. Do not panic, not again, not again. Your fingernails bloody by the time you realised what you were doing, pulling away quickly.

Still, Loki noticed, frowning.

“Either way, there is no way out now,” he said then, surprisingly gentle. “We stay the night and I contact Thor tomorrow.”

Slouching your shoulders, you took a deep breath.

“You’re going to help him, aren’t you?”

“Am I?” Tilting his head, Loki sought out your gaze, stealing yet another heartbeat from you. What was it about him? You were so angry with him you wanted to slap him over and over until he begged you to stop, hurt him for being this selfish when in fact, you would act no different.

“What changed your mind?”

“A very interesting conversation,” he replied. Flattered, you bit your lower lip. Had what you had told him yesterday night in fact altered his point of view? Perhaps you hadn’t dreamed when hearing Loki promise to bring you back home safely after all. Was it okay to hope for that?

Letting out a shaky breath, you closed your eyes to calm down.

“Go to sleep, little minx.” He ordered tenderly.

You just didn’t understand him. One moment, he was so provocative and cruel you wanted to hate him and then in the next… he was charming and almost considerate. Was this what had brought him the nickname Trickster? Did he play everyone’s feelings like an instrument?

“Please don’t leave me alone here.”

Loki sighed. “I won’t. I will be here when you wake up. Now go to sleep.”

He had proven you he was not to trust. But did you do it, against all reason? Truth was, you didn’t know.

I belong to King Loki. Well, maybe you did after all. So you obliged.

Chapter Text

A warm body was pressed against yours under the soft blanket when you woke up the next morning, the first sunbeams of the day tickling your skin. The numbing feeling of ease and protection flooded your senses as you blinked to get used to the brightness in the room, calming you down.

There was an arm wrapped around your waist, pressing you close in an almost possessive manner. Your eyes flew open when you realised whose arm it was.

Right after hungrily forcing down the strangely colourful dinner they had brought, you’d dropped into the surprisingly comfortable bed, falling asleep almost instantly. Loki must have joined you at some point, and for some odd reason, your heart sped up upon feeling his strong body this tightly against yours.

You swallowed rather nervously when he suddenly stirred, mumbling something incomprehensible before opening his eyes.

“Good morning,” you murmured quietly, unsure of how he would react. For just a brief moment, Loki only frowned, then pulled away from you slowly as if he were confused by his actions himself.

“Good morning.” He finally replied then, climbing out of bed to walk over to the window. Sakaar didn’t exactly look beautiful in the morning—it rather reminded you of how you were not on Earth anymore. Immediately, the familiar feeling of fear dug its claws deep into your heart, making you nauseous.

Calm down, you scolded yourself. Another panic attack was the last thing you needed right now, not in front of Loki. Not again.

“What are we going to do now?” You whispered, facing Loki’s back. The God of Mischief turned around.

We aren’t going to do anything, little minx. I will continue to work on gaining the Grandmaster’s trust and you will go back to Thor where you can’t cause any more trouble.” Frankly, he didn’t sound angry anymore. Rather… teasing. Scoffing, you crossed your arms before your chest.

“Are you still blaming me? The Grandmaster seemed to be rather fond of me, I technically helped you.”

Loki shot you a warning glare. “Did you now? You were never supposed to be here in the first place, little minx.

You were wide awake in an instant.

“Don’t you think I know that? Did you think for even a second that I want to be here? I’m on an alien planet whose inhabitants want to enslave me and with gods I read about in books on Norse Mythology, I never wanted any of this!” You bellowed, breathing frantically.

Damn those tears! Burning hot and salty, they transformed Loki into a black spot before your field of view.

“Did you think I did? I finally had what I wanted. A throne, a kingdom, recognition… Hela took it all away from me all because my humble brother decided to come back and play the hero again. Don’t you think I’d too rather be in Asgard, eating grapes and not worrying about Ragnarok?!” He was yelling now too, making you slump back into bed. Ragnarok. What was Ragnarok? It sounded fairly familiar.

“Loki…”

“I will ask for something to eat for you, then I shall bring you back to Thor.” He decided. You barely stopped yourself from saying I want to stay with you. You were probably better off staying with Thor. Unlike Loki, he would actually care about your well-being and make sure you stayed safe.

Loki has kept you safe thus far, you thought, biting your lower lip.

Still, a simple “Okay,” was all you managed to answer.


Loki made sure to let you pay for lumber him a slave. During breakfast with the Grandmaster, he constantly ranted about how you were in fact so needy you had to be treated like a cherished pet. Upon being asked, however, if he had, perhaps, emotionally gotten attached to you, he gave you an undecided look.

“Perhaps I have,” he had said thoughtfully, and although it had sounded like yet another lie, your heart had skipped another painful beat.

When he sneaked you out, this time concealing you as to not attract any unwanted attention, neither of you spoke a word until you arrived at the wreck of the space ship Thor was hiding in, the impact of what had happened the day before as well as how you had slept cuddled up against each other strong and heavy like a chain of rocks.

Something was happening between the two of you, though you couldn’t exactly tell what it was. Perhaps it was some kind of understanding, a mutual agreement of accepting each other, tolerating each other’s ways. Whatever it was, it surely felt different from how humans usually treated him, that you were certain of.

You almost regretted calling him selfish and vain the other night, even though you knew that it was, to some extent at least, the truth.

“Where have you been so long, brother?” Thor complained when you entered the cave-like shelter, causing the God of Mischief to roll his eyes at the Thunderer.

“I told you I was going to settle down here, however, I did find out some pretty interesting things.” He mused. That he had. You held back a nod as you sat down in a corner, attempting to digest the previous day.

“Well, so have I.” Thor grunted moodily.

“So does this mean you don’t want my help? I couldn’t jeopardise my position with the Grandmaster.” Not once did he mention what role you had played in all of that. Shaking your head, you leaned back and watched the brothers discuss.

Loki was just provoking him now. He knew Thor would, in the end, need his skills to survive, let alone get away from here—and so did you.

“Hela has invaded Asgard. She took the throne and killed the whole of Asgard’s defence, including Volstagg, Fandral and Hogan. Heimdall said she used to draw her power from Helheim before she came back, from the very core of the planet.”

“So you did reach him?” Loki replied unimpressed. Thor nodded. “And I have a plan.”

“So have I.”

“Really? How many times have your plans worked out, Loki?”

“Compared to yours? I am going to help you, so be grateful, brother. What do you suggest we do?” He sneered, sitting down next to you. The Thunderer sighed, ignoring Loki’s question but he might as well admit that he didn’t know.

“(Y/N), how are you feeling?”

“I’m alive,” you answered, raising your eyebrows just a little.

“I will make sure to bring you back home as soon as possible and as soon as we have put an end to Hela’s schemes, then you’ll be safe to go. The Sorcerer will help, I am sure.”

“And what if that takes several months?” You interrupted hastily. “The Grandmaster told Loki the planet was surrounded by gateways. Just send me through one that leads back to Earth.”

“It would tear you apart,” Loki said calmly. “You will need a spaceship. I doubt you can fly one of them.”

The flattering hope that had flooded your body faded as quickly as it had erupted in your heart.

“I’m sorry, (Y/N), but there is nothing I can do for you as of now. I will protect you with my life but Hela has to be our first priority. We have to stop her.”

Disappointed, you sunk back into the battered leather seat. It felt like with every conversation, you were moving in circles.

“Then let me help you and do something. The faster this stupid bitch is gone, the faster I can go home.”

It was selfish—offering your help just to save yourself—it was no less than what Loki was doing in this very moment and perhaps this was the reason you were this intrigued by him. You knew he wouldn’t judge you for this.

“(Y/N), that is too dangerous. We don’t know these people.”

Loki stared into the distance, fixating the broken wall of the space ship at the other end of the shelter.

“Let her spy on the Grandmaster.” He suggested, referring to what you had told his scrappers. You bit your lower lip. At least you would get to spend more time with Loki that way. It was almost strange you preferred him over Thor.

“I knew there was something foul about you.” Alarmed, you all turned around, facing the entrance of the plane wreck. It was Valkyrie, standing in the middle of it with clenched fists and narrowed eyes, a suspicious glistening in them. Her lips were pursed.

“How were you able to follow me?” Loki demanded to know, sounding stern and severe.

The dark-skinned woman shrugged. “I know what magic smells like. So? Who are you and where are you really from? All of you? Tell me the truth and I might consider not telling the Grandmaster right away, Lackey.”

“It’s Loki. And I am of Asgard.”

“The king?” She asked, clearly not convinced. Given she was Asgardian as well, she must have known Odin as the rightful king of Asgard… with her absence, however, not that he had died.

Loki smiled sweetly—it was a threatening, dark and fake smile. “The one and only,”

“Not if I have a say in that. I am Thor, son of Odin. Who are you?”

“A Scrapper,” She shrugged once more. “Son of Odin, huh? If that’s true, your majesty, then why would Odin leave the throne to some vain would-be royal like him?”

“Hey!”

“Loki is my brother. He’s adopted and Odin… Odin is dead.” Thor murmured darkly. His voice was hoarse and full of pain. You hadn’t even thought about it yet. With the Allfather dead, the Thunderer had lost his father… and in a way, Loki had too. It was getting to him, you could tell. If he had wanted to, he would have killed him long ago already.

“Something you would know if you didn’t hide here on Sakaar like a coward. Or a traitor,” Loki cooed. He was eerily calm given she had just discovered them planning something behind the Grandmaster’s back. He definitely has done this before, you thought.

Again, you bit your lower lip, scratching the back of your hand. It hurt—the wound you had caused yourself last night was still healing.

“Loki, what are you talking about?”

“She’s Asgardian.” You chirped, staring her down spitefully. Now that she was threatening to bust you, you hated her all the more. It was pretty clear she had no respect whatsoever for the royal brothers in front of her. Well, this wasn’t Asgard, after all. She was in charge here on Sakaar.

“Asgardian?”

The Scrapper rolled her eyes. “I was. A long time ago before the both of you ever saw the light of the day. I am someone else now.”

“Then you need to help us. Asgard is in danger—“ Thor started, taking a step towards her. She was quick to react, drawing a pointy dagger within the twinkling of an eye and pointing it at him incredulously.

“I don’t help anyone. If it is, be lucky you’re stuck here because no one leaves this place.”

It was Loki who leaned forward then, his lips parting in surprise.

“You’re a Valkyrie,” he stated, his eyes locking with a barely visible tattoo on her arm which, now that she was stretching out her hand, impossible to overlook.

A Valkyrie? You had heard of them. Read about them in books and seen remarkable, breath-taking pictures. Fierce female warriors, protecting the throne of Asgard with their lives, looking both alluring, powerful and stunning. No wonder she was so… so… so beautiful and strong. Jealousy punched you in the stomach, making you slouch your shoulders and wonder once more what you had done to deserve all of this.

A sigh escaped your lips.

Chapter Text

“Look, forget it. I have. That’s long in the past.” There was more than she let on, both Loki and you noticed in the very same moment. Still, you kept your mouth shut, observing quietly. “Go ahead, try to find a way to escape this place and get yourself killed. I won’t be a witness of that.”

“Odin is dead.”

The Valkyrie froze dead in her tracks.

“Hela, the Goddess of Death has invaded Asgard. Heimdall showed me. She is bringing death and destruction over the entire realm and I need to stop her.”

“Hela,” she repeated, turning around again slowly. “If Hela’s back, Asgard’s already lost. Trust me that if there were an opportunity to drive my sword through the guts of that murderous hag, I would take it. But there isn’t.”

Loki opened his mouth, frowning. You could tell he was already working Valkyrie into his plans.

“There is in fact a way out. The gateways surrounding this planet. Surely one of them will lead us straight to Asgard.” He suggested triumphantly.

“Not Asgard,” Thor interrupted determined. “Helheim.”

The God of Mischief tilted his head in disbelief. “You can’t be serious.”

“I am. Heimdall said Hela draws her power from Helheim, the place she was banished to, she brought the realm under her control. If we destroy that source of strength, she will be vulnerable for us to attack and then, we return to Asgard.”

“You want to destroy Helheim?” Valkyrie tossed in, unbelieving.

“No, I want to shut down the very core of the planet. It will not affect life there… I mean, there’s no life on Helheim, only death anyway.”

Loki rolled his eyes.

“We’d need a stronger ship. Those gateways will tear mine to pieces.” She then continued.

What was happening here? You didn’t trust this woman. Only moments before, she had been threatening you and now, all of a sudden, she wanted to help?

“Why would you want to help us? You came here to report us to the Grandmaster, didn’t you? What makes you think we can trust you?” It was ironic, really, since for the last couple of days, you had been spending time with none other than the God of Lies himself. If anyone wasn’t to trust, it was him but, quite frankly, the fact you were stranded on an alien planet was stressing you out and eating you up from the inside. Loki was all you had, given that even Thor was focusing on bringing peace to his home realm. Loki had allowed you to come with him despite his obvious annoyance, not storing you away safely in a corner until everything was over.

Until then, Valkyrie had been ignoring you completely. There was no reason for her to pay any attention to you, after all, she had gotten to know you as an obedient—more or less—pet kneeling at Loki’s feet. Hot anger boiled in your stomach upon remembering how humiliating it had been.

“I am a Valkyrie.”

“Yes, pretty tragic, you died a virgin,” you murmured groggily, remembering what you had read in Norse Mythology books. Loki smirked when she rolled her eyes and then went on unaffected. “Odin once sent the Valkyrie to fight Hela back when she escaped her banishment. We lost back then…” For a brief moment, painful memories flashed in her dark eyes. “If there is even a slight chance we kill her once and for all, I’m in.”

“I don’t mean to impose,” Loki added, clearly amused. The tension between the Valkyrie and you was tangible, your ugly dislike mutual.

“…but before we can even think about stealing a ship—with which I can be of big help I can ensure you—we need to find out which gateway will bring us to Helheim in the first place.”

“The Grandmaster knows them all,” Valkyrie replied, shooting him a hateful look. “He doesn’t ever talk about them though.”

“I can make sure he will.” Loki promised. “(Y/N) will come with me to spy on him, it will be less conspicuous.”

Valkyrie raised her eyebrows, unbelieving. “Your slave?”

“I’m not his slave.” You grumbled, clenching your fists. Loki held back a chuckle, you could practically feel it.

“Slave? What are you talking about?”

The God of Mischief shrugged, unaffected.

“I will not let you put (Y/N) in any more danger, Loki.”

“Very well,” he sighed. “I shall go alone. Let’s get to work.”


They had it all planned out within two days, excluding you completely. Of course, what help could you have been, being here entirely by accident in the first place? Valkyrie kept shooting you scornful glances whenever you approached Loki, noticing with slight distaste how you sought out protection by his side.

Perhaps it was a natural reaction, her disliking him because you, more or less, got along with him. Every time she was near you, however, you felt like a nasty and unnecessary insect and it made you wanting to throw up.

As if the end of a career that hadn’t ever properly started, Susan’s death, the humiliation of pretending to be Loki’s pet before the Grandmaster’s nosey eyes and this bloody and way too colourful planet wasn’t enough yet, she decided it would be fun to try and bully you.

Her smug smile was disgusting when she returned from a private conversation with Loki, having figured out exactly how to steal the Grandmaster’s access codes to “borrow” a ship.

“This is madness.” He concluded when Valkyrie opened another bottle of what resembled beer. She had left twice to get new supplies, making you wonder how one body could absorb this much alcohol without perishing. But then again, she wasn’t entirely human. God, how you hated her. “It’s worked before, it will work again. Don’t be such a spoilsport.”

With that, she went outside to get some fresh air. It was dark out already, the sun having gone down hours ago and making space for a full moon. Soon, you would have to start counting the days you were here. You had lost too much already. You didn’t want to let go of your sense of time as well.

“What were you talking about, Loki?” You asked casually, sitting down next to him. The God of Mischief smirked.

“Nothing you would have to worry about, little minx.”

“Do you trust her? I mean… she changed her mind pretty quickly.”

“She will be helpful. Just be vigilant around her.”

Of course you would be. After what little time you had spent with Loki already, you knew it was essential to survive. He could have gotten you killed several times already and yet, he hadn’t. Even if he claimed you were but an unimportant mortal—your own words, to be exact—he seemed to care.

He was so… different than what the media had made him out to be, different from how Thor had described him. Bad traits like egoism, this unbelievable smugness and his constant urge to be worshipped, you clearly saw too when you looked at him… and perhaps it was just the fact you were lonely in this godforsaken place but deep inside, so you figured, Loki did have a good heart. It was strange how it had taken you only a couple of days to find out, to convince yourself of how easy it was to trust him.

Whether it was a grave mistake, you were yet to find out but you were willing to take the risk. You hadn’t exactly anything left to lose.

“Thank you,” you suddenly heard yourself whispering, locking eyes with him only to have airplanes take off in your stomach. Heavens, what was happening to you? You couldn’t possibly like him that much. He was intriguing, fascinating, charming and excitingly dangerous even… it was what drew you to him this much, right? There was no way in hell your liking for him could go beyond a casual acquaintance that would end after you had both made it out of here safe and alive.

Loki looked surprised, almost as if no one had ever thanked him for his actions. Softness was reflecting in his mesmerising blue eyes, threatening to melt your knees into a useless puddle of feelings. Tell me this isn’t happening. What was it about him?

“For what?” He finally replied. If anything, he sounded utterly taken aback.

“I mean, you kind of protected me and you didn’t have to do that. I’m not dead.”

Loki pursed his lips, sighing loudly. Your eyes instantly wondered to his mouth and you wondered quietly what it would feel like to… no, stop it.

“You’re welcome.”