Thor does not like fighting with his brother.
Loki is too clever by half, and he holds grudges, hoards them and hones them until they're sharp. Fights between them tend to escalate, beyond shouting and insults. Loki is inventive and almost as stubborn as he is. It's rare for his brother to admit he was wrong, rarer still for him to recant words said in anger. And Thor has never once known Loki to admit that Thor was right.
It's different now, Loki's flare of cruelty is not hidden so well, and Thor sees more than he used to, has learnt to see more. They fight more often, push each other, sometimes all the way to the edge. But brothers have done worse to each other, in the long histories of all the worlds.
That would be simple enough to accept, only fighting is not the only thing between them now, there's more to their rivalry than games of conflict. Loki has suggested that they are two sides of the same coin. But Loki says a lot of things that turn out not to be true.
His brother is heavier than he looks. Thor has to wonder - can't help but wonder, now he knows the truth - if it's his heritage. If his bones are different beneath the skin. Though he doesn't remember noticing it before, and he has hauled Loki against his chest in celebration more times than he could count. Mostly to his displeasure. Though not always. Loki is unfairly regal and majestic straddling Thor's lap, looking every inch a prince while Thor plays dishevelled warrior beneath him. His brother is as unconcerned by his nudity as he is by Thor's impatience.
Loki has spent a great deal of time in his rooms, since they learned how to hurt each other. Thor doesn't know what it means. He can only be selfishly, confusingly grateful. When he is not being vexed beyond measure.
"Do you intend to let us expire from old age?" he complains, resisting the urge to press Loki down into the sheets by force, and see how long it takes for his snarling, spitting mouth to become friendly and agreeable.
Loki's hands are suddenly ice cold against the muscle of Thor's stomach. He inhales away from the spread of fingers, then laughs, and stills Loki's hands. He suspects he's being punished for the half-formed thought. He pulls Loki's hands back to rest, still laughing, lets them settle against his breastbone. Loki smirks, never slow to discover a weakness, and fingertips slowly trail the shape of muscles and ribs beneath the skin, leaving numb little shivers in their wake.
Thor relaxes into the bed, hands tight on Loki's pale thighs. There's a bored expression on his brother's face, which is an obvious lie. His cold hands slide up Thor's ribcage, thumbs pulling both nipples to hardness with a swift, delicate brush.
"Loki, stop teasing," Thor says, thoughtless and strained. He groans and pulls a knee up, braces Loki's back - before tugging himself upright, catching the narrow shoulders of his brother and stealing a messy, biting kiss.
Loki shoves him back down, and Thor lets him. He goes willingly back to the sheets, as he always does. Loki flattens a hand on Thor's chest, smile still regal and careless. But the cold doesn't come alone. They both watch colour flow up Loki's arm, blue smearing everything else away. Loki's fingers immediately crawl away from Thor's body, taking the rasp of frigid cold with them. His expression sharpens, and retreats into nothing.
"No," Thor catches his wrist as he lifts it, holds it bare inches from his skin.
"I don't think you want that near you." Loki pulls at his grip, but Thor doesn't let go.
"That, is you brother," he reminds him.
Loki's mouth twists in distaste. "You never met anything you couldn't learn to embrace wholeheartedly, did you? I don't know whether to mock you, or fear for your survival." He moves, a sudden shift of weight, as if he might lift from his seat, and take his cold hands and blue skin into the night.
Thor wraps large hands around Loki's waist, and pulls, until he's forced to sway forward, lay his hands on Thor's chest and scowl at him.
"Some things are worth embracing," he says firmly.
"Stupid," Loki tells him, and Thor pretends there's fondness there. There's the brief sting of nails as Loki pushes himself upright again. But he doesn't try and pull away, the chilled edges of his thumbs stroking curiously at Thor's last ribs. "You should know your enemy."
"You're not my enemy," Thor counters, though it comes out more disappointment than objection. There's hurt there too, that he would separate them so ruthlessly. When Thor would never think of it.
"Perhaps I will be, one day."
Thor shakes his head. "You can't be my enemy if I refuse."
"Sometimes I wonder if you hear what comes out of your mouth." There's a bitter flavour of amusement to the words.
"I know well enough what I mean, and so do you." Thor can claim to know some things about his infuriating, frustratingly complicated brother. They grew up together, after all.
Loki makes a noise that means nothing at all to Thor, but he thinks that it should. He thinks there are still falsehoods to untangle, by force if necessary.
"Do you wish to be my enemy?" It escapes without his intention, soft and hurt. But if Thor could drag it back then he would. He does not wish the answer to be 'yes.' For all the worlds in existence.
The ice against his skin deepens. Thor knows well that Loki is making his skin colder just to vex him now, to distract him from his questions. To make him draw away, repulsed. But he finds that he likes the way blue flares over the hard curves of Loki's hips, the fine, smooth skin of his stomach. The colour follows his fingers, spreading out from his hands like he's chasing it. There's a shiver under the skin, everywhere he touches, muscles pulling in, and twitching under the press of his fingers. Loki's face may lie with ease, but his skin defies all attempts at subterfuge. It twists and stretches in Thor's hands, turning cold under his palms. He follows it up, the curves of Loki's ribs, the long, slender lines of his arms, nipples going dark under the slow wash of blue. It reaches Loki's throat in a wave, then keeps going.
Thor can't resist touching. He can't help but reach up to lay his thumb against the strange, darker hue of Loki's mouth. Red eyes lift to meet his own, before narrowing ever so slightly, at whatever shows in Thor's expression.
"Am I everything you thought I would be?" Loki's voice is a blend of so many things. None of them happy, or kind.
"You are my brother," Thor says simply. Because it's the only explanation he knows. The only one which makes sense.
The hard edges in Loki's expression are gone, as quickly as they appeared. There's a curious contemplation instead, eyes liquid and strange, but still unmistakably the same eyes he's been looking at his whole life.
"Loki." Thor's voice is impatience, complaint, a tone he's used with his brother since before he could see over a table. It pulls a smile from somewhere, and Loki's hands are moving again.
He's still cold, and heavy, fingertips dragging frost wherever they touch, and they touch everywhere. The sensitive bends of his arms and thighs, leaving the chill so deep it almost burns. Fingertips on his throat leave him swallowing cold air, and the slow drag of palms along his thighs, makes him grunt a curse of surprise. Thor has never been one to hold his tongue, but Loki seems to know - always seems to know - what he wants. Even when coherency fails him, he knows exactly where to touch, when to be gentle, when to be rough.
Thor exhales, surprised to find his breath half visible, even in the warmth of his room. As if his brother has crawled his way inside him. He finds the idea does not displease him.
"I could fuck you like this," Loki says lazily.
Thor's grumble of protest is a contradiction to the greedy jerk of his hips, the way they tense and widen. Loki's eyes go dark, the wet richness of blood. Thor could protest further, should protest further. But his body mocks him, presses up into Loki's weight like it's accepting a challenge. No one has ever questioned Thor's bravery.
"Push cold so deep inside you, you couldn't breathe."
Thor barely has time to work an answer onto his tongue, before Loki has slipped a hand between his thighs, fingers slick somehow, and pressed into him. It's a spike of cold that doesn't stop, doesn't go gentle but eases in deep and spreads. The gasp it pulls out of him is honest and raw.
He can feel the low burn of amusement, his brother, so certain he will win this. Thor sighs, spreads his legs and arches his hips. He watches Loki's nostrils flare, watches him react to the movement, and draw out his name, soft but warning, as if he's chastising him for something he hasn't done yet.
Thor's hands end up snarled in Loki's hair, and there's a brief, surprised moment of resistance, before Loki relaxes, and lets Thor pull him down and kiss him. The inside of his mouth is freezing, every slide of his tongue a chill that leaves a shiver crawling down his spine. But he still kisses like Loki, layers and secrets and demands. Willing to let Thor have what he wants, within reason. A smile breaks the perfection of it, promising that he will pay for his inability to think later. His fingers are still moving, three now, pressing in slowly, indulgently. As if he's relishing the opportunity.
"If you don't stop smiling like a lion, and fuck me," Thor growls. "I shall put you on your back and claim you myself."
There's a moment of perfect honesty, where Loki's expression is challenge and lust. Thor catches at Loki's waist, fingers tight, drags him close. Because when he decides upon something, he can do nothing else but follow it through. Loki laughs and smacks his hands away, and Thor allows it. He lets Loki slip into the warm space between his legs, cold waist and colder hips, that he clutches at instinctively.
He's already slick, as hard and chilled as the rest of him. He pauses, pressed against the soft warmth of his opening, cold spreading. Thor grunts, grasps him with his hands, and pulls.
It's so cold it burns. So cold that his entire body wants to cringe away from it. But instead Thor throws his hands over his head, grips the metal of the bed frame and demands, in the lift of his hips and the rough groan in his throat that Loki give him more. Loki's watching him with a terrifying, dark intensity, slipping inside him, inch by freezing inch. Thor's stomach clenches, and shudders, cold crawling through his veins - though never quite reaching the burn of heat that keeps him hard, a centre of furious arousal which Loki has never once touched.
He thinks to voice complaint, or suggestion. But Loki shifts up on his knees, spreads Thor wide and drives in hard, knocking the words out of his throat, and leaving a stunned, shaken-apart groan in their place. It's rough, rougher than Thor has ever been, with male, or female. He's strong enough to take it, more than strong enough. Though he can't pretend that the force of it doesn't drive the breath out of him, thighs taut, arms tensed to hold him, or to brace against, pushing back when he can. Because they've never done anything apart when they can do it together.
Loki is still cold wherever they press together, but it's a duller, less jagged sensation now. Like the warmth of Thor is melting him. Or perhaps he's simply become used to the chill, to the slide and grip of Loki's hands. Thor wonders if he knows what expression shows on his face. Possessive, and angry, and a dozen layers in-between. As if he doesn't know how to wear this new face as well as his old. Thor finds he likes this selfish side to his brother. This other side to the coin, that he hides beneath false smiles.
Thor says his name, over and over, turns the hard edges in his eyes into something simpler, something hotter. Until Thor can't even manage his name. But he knows there's little shame in being broken open so completely that there's nothing left to do but surrender. Not here.
He comes, hard and messy across the warmth of his own skin, hands twisting the frame under his fingers beyond repair. Loki stills at the screech of metal, gives the faintest gasp, and Thor tightens his thighs around his waist, drags Loki down with him. He refuses to release him, until the shivers of pleasure have subsided. But his brother sinks down into him, rather than pry himself free.
Thor's breathing like he's fought an army, his brother's weight settled untidily over him. A careless sprawl of limbs. Loki's skin returns to a shade Thor is more familiar with, warming slowly where it presses into his own. There are fine lines of dark hair across one eye, and a curl of narrow fingers folded - caught - round Thor's shoulder.
"We love you, you know that," Thor reminds him, in the silence after. Because he doesn't think they say that enough. They don't say it often enough for Loki to believe it.
Loki's fingers lift and press against his mouth, warm and firm, and final.