Loki woke up with a start. I must have dozed off, he thought to himself. Someone was banging on the front door and Thor was no where to be found. He sighed and turned off his iPod, rubbing his eyes as Stupid MF was cut off and got up, stretching with his arms above his head. He walked over to the door yawning, and opened it. Two men in uniform were standing before him.
"Can I help you?" Loki's voice was deep. He was still half asleep and it showed.
"Uh yeah. We're looking for a Mr. Na...Nale?" The one with the clipboard scratched his head and looked at the paper.
"It's Nál. Do you want Laufey, or me?"
"Laufey, please...I think."
Loki sighed and leaned against the door frame, crossing his arms as he did so.
"May I ask who wants him?"
"Oh we're from the moving company." The clipboard man smiled at Loki gently.
"No you're not. I met the movers. You two," he pointed at each of them. "Are not the ones we hired." Loki stood up straight, inspecting them with a suspicious gaze. They had the same uniform as the other two, but most definitely not the same faces.
"Oh well you see..." He trailed off, looking up at something behind Loki that visibly scared him. Someone cleared their throat.
"Loki, I can handle this. Go find Thor and help him with dinner." Loki looked over his shoulder and saw his father glaring down at the men, Odin was standing not too far off conversing with Thor. The blonde oaf looked at him with something akin to amusement and walked into the kitchen.
"Yes father." He said hello to Odin as he passed, not expecting the surprise hug his father's lover pulled him into.
"It's good to see you, Loki. I'm happy you chose to live with us." Odin held him at arms length.
"Yes well, mother wasn't very easy to deal with after the divorce, and though I do love her, I felt as though it'd be better if I wasn't there." Loki pulled away and looked Odin in the eye before excusing himself to help Thor. He walked into the kitchen and found his kinda-almost-step-brother hovering over a cookbook. There was chicken defrosting the sink and tomatoes on the counter. A pot of almost boiling water was on the stove with a bag of bowtie noodles next to it. Thor had a large knife in hand as he read the directions.
"What are you doing?" Loki walked to the sink and poked the chicken. It was thoroughly defrosted already.
"Making dinner. What does it look like?" Thor glanced up at him briefly.
"It looks like," Loki grabbed the book from its place on the counter and flipped through the pages. "Like you have no idea how to make such a simple recipe. Really? You can't make tomato basil chicken pasta without detailed instructions?" Loki closed the book and dropped it with a thump! on the counter. Thor made a squawking noise and moved out of the way as Loki grabbed his knife and reached for a cutting board.
"What are you doing? I can do it myself!" Thor tried to grab the knife back but Loki grabbed his face with his hand and held him back. His palm covered Thor's face and he could feel the too-much-to-be-five-o'clock-shadow-but-too-little-to-be-a-beard stubble on his cheeks and jaw. Thor's blue eyes glared at him from between his fingers.
"If you have to follow a book recipe to make something, then you're not doing it right." Loki gave a forceful shove and chuckled as Thor fell backwards, crashing into the fridge. "Cooking, unlike baking, should never be done by book. Measure the ingredients with taste and your eyes, not by units. Make it with love, not ink." Thor grumbled and sat down on a stool near the counter. He continued glaring at Loki, chin in his hand and pride bruised. He watched as Loki pulled the chicken from the sink and diced it in little cubes, accomplishing the feat in record time. He pushed the meat into the corner of the board close to the edge as he bent down to get a cooking pan. He set the metal device on the stove and lit the burner. Thor saw the flames lick the bottom of the pan. Loki uncorked the cooking oil bottle and poured an unknown amount into the pan.
Loki opened the fridge and pulled out a jar of minced garlic, using his knife to scoop out some and plop it into the pan. Within minutes, the rooms smelled of garlic, something that made Thor's mouth water. Two tomatoes were diced up and added to the pan, the chicken still on the cutting board. Onions were next, one half used and tossed in the pan. The water was boiling by this time, taking to the added noodles with ease. Thor noticed that Loki swayed his hips as he moved around the kitchen, dancing to some tune in his head. He pretended that the heat spreading to his face was just the temperature in the room rising.
Loki added the last few ingredients to the pan and finally added the chicken, seasoning it with salt, pepper, chopped, fresh basil, and dried oregano. He put a lid over both the pan and the pot and let the foods cook to perfection. He washed his hands and cleaned up his work space, depositing the paper towels into the trash bin.
"Cooking is a labor of love. Following the directions only gives it a taste of a blah. No one wants blah in their mouths." Thor stared at him as he walked away. Loki raised one hand above his shoulder.
"Turn off the heat on the noodles in fifteen minutes, then the chicken in twenty."
Thor was left with that tantalizing smell of food and the memory of Loki's swaying hips, wanting more.
More of what, however, he wasn't quite sure on.