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Loki had returned to Asgard.

The words seemed stuck in Sif’s mind, locked into an endless loop that refused to leave her. Thor had found him and brought him home. Was it home? He was not the son of Odin after all; he was the son of Laufey, a prince of Jotunheim not Asgard. Yet, they all still cared for him in some way. Sif considered if she still cared for him, still loved him. It had not been love she told herself, it had been nothing more than lust. She had desired him and had gone to bed with him; it was nothing more than that. Then he had brought such chaos down upon Asgard, and now upon Midgard as well. It scared her to have him so close after all he had done. Thor had visited her chambers after things had been dealt with to assure her that Loki could not get free, he could not harm anyone. He was gagged and bound and imprisoned.

It still did not put her mind at ease. As she looked at her face in the mirror on her dressing table, she could see the worry so plain on her own face. She knew Thor had seen it too when he had arrived at her door, he had swept her up into a tight hug that she had not been expecting. As soon as it had been announced they had returned, she had retreated to her chambers. The others had gone rushing off to see the prisoner, but she had gone and hidden. She could not face it, not yet at least. Her eyes moved away from her mirror to stare at the goblet on the table. Frigga had brought the powder, to be mixed with wine, in order to help her sleep. The queen was not a fool; she knew the past and knew it’s affect on the present. Sif was thankful for it and at the same time resentful she would need to resort to such things. Nothing had ever shaken her as badly as this.

Standing up, she moved away from the table, slipping off her robe and placing it on the back of the chair. She smoothed down her nightgown; an act she knew was born out of her nerves. Without another hesitation, she grabbed the goblet and gulped down the wine. She slammed the goblet back down on the table and listened to the noise as it echoed around her bedroom. Tonight she would sleep well and tomorrow she would decide what to do.

The powder began to affect her faster than she had expected, her eyelids already feeling heavy as she lay down in the bed. It seemed she barely had time to pull the covers up before she drifted off.

--

The breeze was gentle, blowing lightly across her skin. The sun was starting to set and the sky a myriad of colours. At the edge of the lake, Sif stood and waited. He had promised to meet her there, at sunset, and they could talk. They could talk privately here of the things that could not be said in the palace. They could be themselves here.

“My goodness Lady Sif, this is more romantic than I expected for the great warrior maiden.”

The voice behind her seemed to freeze her in place for a second, the disdain dripping from that silver tongue. Then she spun round, her hand going for the dagger at her side that just was not there. Of course it wasn’t, she wasn’t armed in this dream.

This dream? She was asleep, this was a dream, and yet she aware of it.

“Loki, what is this?”

For the first time in what felt like an eternity, she looked upon Loki. He was dressed like he had been before, in green and gold, but his hair was longer. His face seemed thinner, more drawn. His eyes, there was something about his eyes that did not feel right. Still, he was Loki as she had always known him, a prince of Asgard and her friend.

“This is your dream my dear Sif. I merely came to visit.” He looked around as he began to walk towards her, her mind racing for ways to defend herself should he attack. They had sparred in the past, but his trickery often got the upper hand on her strength. “Quite the beauty spot you have created here, quite the place to dream of a love that will never be.” His face twisted into an ugly sneer as he fixed his eyes upon her. “Still pining for the one you cannot have, seems you’ve already forgotten the one you settled for.”

“Get out of my mind,” commanded Sif, refusing to back down as he stood so close to her. “You should not even be able to do this; Thor said your magic had been bound.”

“Yes, they bound my tongue and hands, but they cannot stop my mind. All I had to do was seek out the mind of the one who knows me most...intimately.” He stretched the word out, a wicked glint in his eyes, watching as Sif found herself unable to meet his gaze any longer. “Our minds are linked in a very unique way now Lady Sif, you cannot get rid of me so easily.”

That was when the panic set in, a blind panic that she could not contain. Her mind forever linked to Loki’s in some way she could not understand, it was too much to consider. With a wild cry, she launched herself at Loki, quite happy to kill him with her bare hands. Of course, she fell right through him as the apparition faded before her eyes. She heard him laugh behind her and turned her head to glare at him. He just stood there mocking her as tears threatened to fall. She would not be beaten by him. Jumping to her feet, she ran at him again, but this time he grabbed her arms and pushed her back as hard as possible. When she slammed into a wall, it was so unexpected that she cried out at the sudden pain in her back. In an instant, Loki was in front of her with a hand on her throat. He forced her head up, his other hand batting away her weak attempts to fight back. She was trapped by him.

“I have not fully tested these powers Sif, I do not know the extent of them yet. I do not know what would happen if one of us was to die in this dream, so I suggest we try not to kill each other.”

“I do not care,” she growled back at him, desperately trying to squirm free of his grasp. “I will kill you with my own hands.”

“To kill me,” he began, his hand tightening around her throat just a little. “Would be a blessing. You would free me then. You would take away all the pain and suffering I feel. All the turmoil. And let us be honest, it could only be you who could do it.”

He released her then, letting her drop to her knees as she fought to get her breath back and regain any kind of composure. As she knelt, she looked at the gold tiled floor in confusion. Looking around she could see that Loki had changed their location, now they were in his bed chamber. She wanted nothing more than to jump to her feet and confront him, but she was winded and all she could do was slowly pull herself up and lean against the wall behind her.

“Why me then?” she asked, her voice sounding more hoarse than she expected. As she looked at Loki, she found he had changed his clothes too. No longer was he wearing the elaborate clothing he usually took too, instead he wore just the simple tunic and breeches they used to wear for training. He looked so much smaller in those clothes, so much like the Loki she had known all her life.

“Thor could not do it, nor could Odin, nor could Frigga. They still love me. They still believe I can be saved. Perhaps they can save me, who knows. Now the Warriors Three, they would do it. They would do it slowly and painfully to make me suffer for my treachery. Then who could we look to but you.” Loki began to walk towards her then, a soft smile playing on his lips. His face was calm and his eyes seemed to have lost that crazed gleam. Sif could almost remember why she had come so willingly to his chambers now, the way he had charmed her with that silver tongue and handsome looks. “You would be so kind in your killing. You would be swift, perhaps a dagger right to the heart.”

There was a weight in Sif’s hand that wasn’t there before, a cold metal against her hand. She raised her right hand to find a dagger sitting there. Her eyes drifted from it to Loki to find him still just smiling at her like nothing in the world is wrong. Reaching out, he wrapped a hand around hers, keeping the dagger tight in her grip before he moved her hand so that the point of the dagger was pointed towards his heart.

“A swift kill, a merciful kill, would you do that if you had the chance?”

For a moment, Sif found herself considering it. It would have been so easy to plunge the dagger into his chest, to leave him bleeding on his own floor. It would be the end of it all. Then she could be free of him. But the memories would remain. The memories of those happier times they shared together. The memories of those nights spent in his arms.

“No.” With a sharp tug, she pulled her hand away and the dagger clattered to the floor. “I will not end your life.”

A curious look crossed Loki’s face then, at first inquisitive and then just a smirk. “Do you perhaps still care for me Sif? Still have feelings? Still desire me?” Sif heard a voice then, her own softly whispering Loki’s name as she had done in the past. Her voice then rose in volume and intensity until it was the cry she uttered when she had reached her climax. A blush rose on her cheeks as she found herself confronted with her past actions, yet strangely she did not feel so ashamed about her past intimacy with him. But there was a fury rising within her.

“You are a monster. You are a traitor. You are a murderer.” As she spoke, she fixed her eyes upon his. Each accusation was spat out as she began to walk towards him. “I despise everything you are. You do not deserve a swift death; you deserve to be punished for all eternity.”

“And how would you punish me Lady Sif? What would you do to make me see the error of my ways?” Loki did not back down as she stalked towards him, instead standing his ground as she forced her way into his personal space. “How could you hurt me?”

Sif felt the hairs rise on the back of her neck as he spoke and found herself licking her lips. He had taken great care to emphasise ‘punish’ and ‘hurt’. It seemed his mind had turned back to their more intimate escapades as well. Their relationship had never been the most stable and they had enjoyed their fair share of disagreements. She hated him for all he had done and yet all she could think of was how much she had missed this sparring.

“You know very well how I can hurt you.” She replied, her heart hammering in her chest.

“Is that an invitation my lady?”

Her mind was in turmoil, the rational part trying desperately to remain in control. But frustration and desire was running rampant and it seemed there was no stopping the inevitable. With both hands, she reached out and pulled his head towards her, their lips crashing together harder than she had intended. Loki was not shy in responding, grabbing her round the hips to pull her body flush against his. Her hands snaked up into his longer hair and she gave a short, sharp tug. He pulled his head back with a hiss, breaking the kiss.

“I see,” he said slowly as she released his hair. Both of them were breathing hard and there was a wicked gleam in their eyes. Without another word, he dipped his head down and began to kiss her neck. She let out a little moan of pleasure which turned to a sharp gasp in turn as he suddenly bit down on that same spot. This was their favourite game, to bring pain and pleasure together in whatever way they could. She knew how to hurt him just the way he liked, just as he did to her. Her eyelids fluttered as he continued a path down to her collarbone, kissing and biting, marking her in his own way.

Sif’s hands worked their way under his shirt, nails digging into his back enough to make him gasp too. He moved his head to look at her once more, pupils wide as he stared at her. She nodded at him and him at her in return, the agreement in place with no words needed. Loki turned Sif and began to walk her backwards towards the bed. When they reached the edge, he waved a hand and with that their clothes vanished. In what small rational part of her mind that was still working, she thought she should feel ashamed or concerned by these events, but it was drowned out by a desperate need. She pulled him onto the bed with her and he gladly followed after her.

The kisses became frantic again. Sif’s ran her hands down his back, letting her nails gently graze his pale skin. In reply, Loki returned to his assault on her necks which only lead to those grazes becoming deeper scratches. It was a fine balance of pleasure and pain that made them both happier than they had been in such a long time.

“Now,” Sif gasped at one point, that desperate need had become overwhelming. Even so, she was not entirely prepared when he thrust into her, her back arching at the suddenness of it. Above her, Loki laughed softly, thrusting hard into her again to watch her reaction. Her nails were dug into his shoulders, he was sure she was about to draw blood but he did not care. He had missed this and he was revelling in it. Each thrust brought out a loud gasp or moan from her and it made his heart soar. Soon he had built up an almost punishing rhythm, the sting of scratches crisscrossing his back seeming to spur him on. Leaning down, he kissed her fiercely, teeth scraping across her lips so harshly as to draw blood. The coppery taste filled his mouth and it nearly finished him there and then.

Both of them could feel their climax building and as Sif licked her lips to taste her own blood, she felt it hit her. Her back arched up as she cried out, her first climax in so long was more intense than she had expected. Within seconds Loki reached his and let out a hoarse groan, remaining very still as they came together. As they began to come down, he pulled out and collapsed onto the bed next to her. Their breathing was fast and hard, their skin was sticky with sweat. Loki reached out and began to trace the path between his marks on her neck with his long fingers.

“Such a shame those marks won’t last, I would have loved to know how you would explain them.” He spoke softly, smirking as she turned to look at him in confusion. “Such a pleasant dream, my dear Sif, I will have to come and visit you tomorrow night.”

A dream? This was a dream? Sif’s mind seemed clouded as she continued to come down from her climax.

“Goodnight my love.”

--

Sif’s eyes snapped open and she stared up at the ceiling. She sat up quickly to find that she was indeed in her own bed in her own room. It was starting to get light, the rising sun allowing her to see quite clearly that this was not Loki’s chambers. Suddenly she felt cold and wrapped her arms around herself. Her skin was damp with sweat, her breathing was still fast and her heart was still hammering in her chest. It had been so vivid, so real and yet it really had just been a dream. A dream Loki had been able to enter. Pushing off the covers, she rushed to her dressing table. She began to inspect her neck and just as he had said, there were no marks at all. There was no sign at all of what had happened. She sank down into her chair as she tried to process what was going on, but quickly jumped up. Now she was acutely aware of the wetness between her legs and she was not sure she wanted to be reminded of it.

It was simple what she had to do; she had to inform Thor and Odin that he had invaded her mind. Of course that would mean having to admit to what she had done with him because she imagined Loki would take great joy in telling them. Yet if she told them, would they trust her? Her mind was so easy to manipulate it seemed, and she had so gladly lain with Loki. It did not bear thinking about in reality. Her mind was in turmoil. She had no idea if Loki intended to use her for anything terrible, so perhaps she should not tell them yet. Perhaps she could extract some information from him if he was planning something. Perhaps she could help to heal the hurt that had been caused.

The thought of seeing him again in her dreams made her lick her lips. She could not deny it had been a very pleasant dream, just as Loki said. It seemed she had missed him more than she had expected, or had at least missed sharing his bed. Reaching up, she gently touched her neck, tracing the same line he had drawn.

For now, she would remain quiet. For now.