It's the Captain who approaches first. He walks across the debriefing area, no longer in his blue uniform, an already fading bruise on his cheek and taps Thor's shoulder. The others are sitting around the table all in various states of exhaustion or healing and Thor cannot help how his eyes drift to the new person in the room.
Pepper Potts had rushed into the meeting room not long after SHIELD's Commander Fury had brought them all back to his flying fortress and attached herself to Stark's side. Thor watched as she received the news of Agent Coulson and how her fingers had twined with Starks, her eyes misting over. It had made him think of Jane and how she had rushed to him back when she had seen him felled. How she had held his head and begged him to live. It is interesting to Thor that this woman has him thinking of Jane. Pepper Potts -- an amusing name, that Thor had learned shortly after her entrance to the meeting her as Stark had levered himself up, clearly still in pain, to reach for her -- does not look at all like Jane. She is tall and willowy, with hair and a sharp discerning gaze that reminds Thor of his mother, whereas Jane is small and while sweet and clever -- far more clever in Thor's mind than Stark, who he's noted is considered a bright mind among his Midgardian allies -- she does not command the presence of space Lady Pepper does so innately. Still, Thor thinks of Jane as he watches the Lady Pepper's hands absently touch Stark's bruises and how Stark leans into her touch.
With the meeting over and Fury ordering extra guards to his brother's cell they are all dispersing. It is clear Fury that wants him and Loki to be gone as soon as possible and a great part of Thor is relieved to finally be taking his brother home, even under the circumstances.
Thoughts on Loki and how much darker and broken he seems pricks at Thor and he can only hope that taking him home, back to mother who always understood Loki best, will help soothe whatever pains his brother. He knows the others do not think there is any redemption for Loki and his deeds. Thor does not allow himself to let his thoughts follow theirs. He cannot yet think of his brother the way the others do. Thor remembers of Barton's, the Hawk Eyed, face not even a day ago when he had pushed his arrow in Loki's face as his brother laid on Stark's broken floor, quipping away his deeds with for a drink. Thor had felt disappointment and relief at his brother's words. Barton's arrow never lowered. It had taken a command from the Captain for Barton to stand down, but Thor knows Barton would have taken the shot had the Captain and Thor not been in the room. Stark, Banner's Hulk, and the Widow would not have stopped him.
It is difficult for Thor to think of Loki as the enemy, but to Midgard it is clear that is what his brother is. Thor fears that this might not change overly much once they return to Asgard where they now call him Loki World-Killer, and it weighs on him.
Sighing at these thoughts, Thor looks towards the table where he catches as Lady Pepper's thumb swipes against Stark's cheek as he says something that make her smile and roll her eyes. The affection between them is easier than Thor would have thought of Stark.
It is now his thoughts turn back to Jane.
Jane, who smiled so readily at him in those few days in the desert. Jane, who drove him in her metal chariot to Mjölnir and stood at his side when she had no reason to believe what he spoke was true. They were too few days, Thor thinks, but they are precious days to Thor, if only for Jane's smiles. Thinking of this, he does not notice Rogers approach.
"Hey, Thor, you okay?" Rogers' hand touches Thor's shoulder.
Thor looks to Rogers, a sincere look on the man's face -- thinks Steven The True -- and nods. "Yes, I am well. My thoughts have gotten away from me."
Rogers nods, then rubs at his neck. "You sure? You seemed… well, like you were thinking of someone."
Looking at Rogers, who stood stronger and steady next to him in battle, Thor does not even consider lying. "I was, my friend."
"Look, if you're worried about your br--um, Loki, and what Fury had to do restrain him then--"
Thor clasps a hand over the Captain's shoulder, touched by words, even if they are not what his immediate thoughts dwell on. "I will always worry about my brother, but that's not who I was thinking of."
"Oh." Rogers' flushes and Thor grins. This a good man.
"I was thinking of Jane."
"Jane?" Rogers echoes. Thor forgets that save Philip Son of Coul, may he live forever on in the halls of Valhalla, these people do not know Jane.
Thor doesn't know why but his eyes travel to where Pepper is helping Stark stand up, an arm going around his waist and feels Steven's eyes follow his gaze.
"Ah. She your girl? Jane?"
Thor thinks on that. Is Jane his lady? They only had a few days together and from the beginning there had been one trial after the other, but he thinks of her roof and how her face glowed in the fire. Of how her eyes had lit up when he presented her book, how her fingers touches his cheek as he died, and her lips pressed against his like she wanted to memorise his breath. There had been no official declarations, on his part or hers, save the kiss, but--
"Yes; it was complicated." Thor says, thinking of coffee and the fires the Destroyer set. "She was at my side during my last journey to your realm before I left for Asgard once more and the Bifrost was lost to the stars preventing me from returning." To her stays unsaid but it seems Rogers understands what Thor does not say.
An odd look crosses Rogers' face and he swallows, thickly. "Yeah, I know how that is believe it or not." He leans against the wall next to Thor. "And is she… I mean, she's okay, right?"
"Phillip Son of Coul assured me of her safety, but she is far and I have not been able to speak to her."
"Oh that's--wait," Steven pushes off the wall and calls out to Stark who is standing by the doorway, the Lady Pepper at his side, speaking to Banner, "Stark, hey, you got one of those cellphones?"
Thor thinks of Darcy holding a device to his face asking him to smile.
Across the room Stark blinks and then tilts his head towards Rogers as if he's unsure the question is being directed to him. Thor would find it amusing if he was not wondering what the Captain is planning.
"You talkin' to me?"
Next to him Pepper smacks his shoulder with a hiss, "Tony!"
"What? It's a legitimate question."
Rogers ignores the back and forth, "Yes, I'm talking to you Tony."
"Oh, okay! Lay it on me." Stark's eyes go comically wide, waggling his brows to Lady Pepper who only rolls her eyes.
"Do you have a cell phone?" Steven repeats.
Starks only gives another wide eyed look, eyes darting between Pepper and Banner. "Is that a serious question?"
Rogers huffs and is about to retort when the Lady Pepper steps half in front of Stark and smiles gently. "Sure, Captain. You can use mine." She slides the bag she has on her shoulder off, opens it and pulls out a thin, and almost clear, device. "Can I ask what's it's for?"
Rogers looks at Thor and at Thor's nods, which is mostly out of curiosity on how this will help him reach Jane, he answers Pepper. "Thor needs to make a call."
This has Stark, Banner and even the Widow look at Thor with bewildered expressions ranging from shock to outright confusion.
"Wait," Starks starts, "who the hell does Point Break need to call, and more importantly is it even on planet because while I can assure you that Stark Phones have a great range, I don't think outer space is on our calling plans. Though now I'm thinking it should be." There is a look in his eyes that surprisingly reminds Thor of both Jane and his brother.
The answer surprisingly comes from Barton.
"Oh, Doctor Foster."
Thor turns to him, "You know Jane?"
Barton shifts in his chair and rolls one shoulder, "Uh, kinda, I was assigned to the New Mexico detail where you first showed up and then I was on Selvig's detail. Before we had to cut him off he would get a lot of calls and emails from Doctor Foster."
"You mean to tell me that you had a closer encounter of the personal kind when you got here, big guy?" Stark's eyes are practically glowing with glee at the news and Thor reminds himself it would not do to hurt his new allies. Also while he can glean the implication of Stark's words…
"I do not know what that means."
Stark sighs, deflated, "Of course you don't."
The lady Pepper shoves him down to a chair, where he goes willingly, as she turns to Thor. She smiles warmly and while he finds Tony amusing Thor thinks he likes Lady Potts much better. "Do you know her number?"
"Her number? Do you mean her age?"
There's a snort, and Thor is sure it's from Stark even if he blocked from his view. Banner comes in with the explanation though. Banner is a fine man.
"No, she means the number where to reach Jane. We have to call her and-- think of it as coordinates. We need to know her coordinates so we can reach her."
Thor frowns at this. "I do not know her number then. Phillip Son of Coul told me he transferred Jane to a safe location as soon as my brother showed on Midgard, but he did not give me any such number." Everyone stiffens slightly at Coulson's name and Thor understands that no more jests will take place for the moment.
It's the Widow that speaks up first, "He would have moved her to a SHIELD facility. Remote."
Thor nods, "Indeed he did. He called the place: Tromso."
"Norway," Stark says. He looks at Thor, "Apt."
Barton adds, "There's a SHIELD facility there. The Observatory."
Rogers springs into action then, turning towards where the stairs that lead to the lower levels of the fortress where the other SHIELD agents work and calls out to Agent Hill.
"Agent Hill, can you get us a number for Jane Foster in Tromso?"
Hill's voice drifts up, skeptical, "And why do you need that number, Captain?"
Thor thinks he can hear the smile in Steven's voice. "Don't you believe in happy endings, agent?"
In his seat Stark chuckles and rolls his eyes, but his hand finds Pepper's once more and their fingers twine. Bruce smiles softly and privately to himself, and Thor takes note of how Natasha's eyes soften and Barton's lips curl.
It is however Agent Hill's answer to their Captain that makes Thor smile. "Any other day and I wouldn't, sir."
Three minutes later Steven has a number in his hand, and recounts it to Lady Pepper, as she grins at Thor. In that second Thor feels grateful to have found such allies. Five rings later the voice of Darcy lightens Thor's heart.
"Dr. Jane 'Gonna Build Myself a Rainbow Bridge' Foster's lab, Darcy 'Graduated With Honors' Lewis speaking!"
There's muffled laughter around the room, and Thor can't help himself. "Darcy! It is good to hear your voice!" As he speaks Pepper turns the phone to him and Midgard's magic will never cease to amaze him as he can hear Darcy's familiar voice filters in.
"Oh holy crap, THOR! JANE!" he hears her voice raise sharply making him laugh. Pepper gently hands him the phone with a whispered 'be careful' and Thor hold the delicate piece of technology as if it's a one of his mother's golden flowers. He senses the others quietly stepping away from him to allow him some degree privacy. He is grateful.
Darcy is still speaking as she calls Jane over. "Jane! Get your skinny butt over here now!" Her voice comes in clear and strong, "We just saw the news like an hour ago and we've been trying to call Special Agent iPod Stealer--Jane!"
"I'm here!" Thor hears Jane's voice and the weight in his heart that never forgot's Loki taunt on the Bifrost finally disappears. Her voice comes in stronger as Darcy's voice quiets, "Thor?"
He pulls the phone closer to his face like Pepper is signalling him too and he nods his thanks. By the table Stark has pulled out a small device and seems to be typing furiously on it. Thor pays it no mind.
"It is I, Jane."
"Hi," her voice is thick with what he suspects are tears and he wishes he could see her face, touch her cheeks. "I saw you on the news. I saw-- are you okay?"
"I am unharmed."
"Good, that's good."
"And yourself, are you well? I have worried over you and that somehow this has touched you."
"No, I'm okay. I mean I thought it was a little weird that SHIELD suddenly moved us but I guess now it makes sense."
"It heartens me to hear this," Thor says, and suddenly wishes Mjölnir's speed was greater so that he could see her face. "I have missed you Jane."
"Me too, so--OH HOLY SHIT." Darcy's voice comes in loudly over the line and it sounds very close to Thor too.
Through the phone Thor can hear Jane say something to Darcy but he can't make it out because Bruce taps on Thor's shoulder again.
He's smiling and points to Tony. "I think Tony just did something very illegal with his computer and hacked your girlfriend's webcam."
"I do not take you meaning."
Bruce only pulls him forward and even though Jane's voice is muffled over the phone it's coming in clearer through the machine that Tony has in front on him. Thor moves to stand by Tony's side and his eyes wide as he watches Darcy pull Jane into view.
"JANE, I THINK IRON MAN JUST HACKED MY LAPTOP. HOLY SHIT."
Tony's grin is smug as he waves to the screen where Jane and Darcy's images lay, "Hey, ladies, I hear we got a Norse God you've been looking for."
Jane laughs and Darcy slaps her hands over her mouth a high sound still escaping.
Thor absently lets Pepper take the phone back as he pushes Tony out of the way and in front of the computer, as Bruce called it. "Jane, I must admit your Midgardian technology is far exceeding Asgard's in my favour." Next to him Tony mutters something self satisfying Thor chooses to ignore.
"I'm liking it too." She grins and he can't help but study the lines of her face.
"It is good to see you, Jane. I only wish it were in person."
"I--" she trails off, looking at him then away for a beat. "You're not staying, are you? You wouldn't be calling if you were staying. Right?" She's facing him straight on and he can pick up on the wet sheen in her eyes.
Thor touches the edge of the screen and feels the others move away from her. Thinks he feels Pepper's hand touch his shoulder. Darcy disappears from the screen.
"I must return my brother home."
"Your brother--Oh, New York."
Thor has never underestimated how clever Jane is and now is only too glad for her cleverness because it he can see how quickly her mind in working.It prevents him from having to share things he would rather speak to her in private about.
"He must be returned to Asgard, where he will face trial."
She licks her lips, "Right. And are you okay? Is he okay?"
Thor wants nothing more than to take her in his arms and press kisses to her face if only for asking after Loki's wellbeing. She is the first.
"We are well."
She nods and he watches as she tucks her hair behind her ears. "Thor, how did you get here?" Her question rushes out and he smiles privately at the flush in her cheeks. "God, sorry, that sounds horrible, but I've been monitoring almost every energy signature that matches the Bridge and nothing has come up. We only found about New York as quickly as we did because whatever energy was being used to hold that portal open has some similarities to the one the Bifrost gives when it's open but it was so unstable not to mention the amount of radiation it would have been giving out--"
"It was controlled," Thor says, even as he notices Tony and Bruce's attention turn to Jane's words. "My brother had a machine built to open his portal." Thor lowers his voice. "You should speak to Selvig." On the screen Jane's eyes widen, narrow, and once again he sees how quickly her mind work.
Her voice is hard but understanding when she answers. "I will."
"You are okay, aren't you?"
His heart warms. "I am."
"And you'll get back to Asgard okay, won't you?"
He grins at her and wants to touch the curve of her lips with his fingers. "Yes, we will be using some of Yggdrasill's darker paths, but we will be safe."
"I will return once again, Jane. I promised you this once and I do so again."
Jane's lips soften and she nods softly on the screen. "I believe you. And don't worry, I won't stop trying to open the Bifrost this end."
He knows she won't. She is not the type to give up. But he feels he must protect her all the same.
"Be careful with that, Jane. There are many dangers within the Nine Realms; not all paths lead to Asgard."
She nods again, more seriously this time. "I'll remember."
Thor slides his eyes to where the other are standing away from him and sighs. "Jane, I must go now, but I am glad I was able to see you before I left."
"I'm happy you got Tony Stark to hack Darcy's laptop too." He watches as he touches her fingers to her lips and then as the screen goes dark as she presses them to whatever decide is along her image through before she takes her hand away and what he reads in her face, in her eyes, humbles him. He lays his palm flat on his chest and says something in the Old Tongue. Thor knows she will not understand the words, but hopefully grasp their meaning. Her smile tells him she does.
Standing, he gently closes the top of the computer, turning to the others. His eyes meet Rogers.
"Thank you for that, friends."
Rogers nods, and Stark goes on about something 'nothing getting in the way of true love' as Pepper smiles and touches her lips to his unbruised cheek while Banner smiles, and Natasha and Barton only smirk.
"You know, if you really wanted, we could get on my plane and be in Norway in about five hours. Give your lady love a real goodbye," Tony says, rather lecherously, but Thor chooses to ignore that the implications of his words because a part of him would want nothing more than to hold Jane in his arms. It is only the knowledge of Loki muzzled and shackled in a cell a few levels below from where Thor stands with his comrades that gives him pause.
He smiles at Stark, walking over and slapping the man on the back enough from him to stumble into his lady. Too hard then.
"Perhaps another time, Anthony."
Tony scowls at him, Pepper grins at him and Thor is gladdened. It has not been he looked for when he returned to Midgard, but he is taking Loki home, and Jane is safe, bright and brilliant. It is enough.