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Spoils of War

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Thor's first impression of Jotunheim is in the midst of a battle charge and it was a very poor one indeed. At first glance the realm of the frost giants was nothing but a jagged wasteland, hatefully frigid, rich in nothing but ice, snow, and blue-faced, red-eyed warriors bent on slaughter. As the battle rages Thor is impressed by the stubbornness of the Jotnar; they are hard to injure, tougher to kill, and yield for little else but death. More than once Thor finds himself thinking that truly this is an evil race. What else but hatred could spur them to fight so hard for so little?

It's only after - after Laufey's thigh is speared through with Gungnir and his arm shattered by Mjolnir, after a grudging order to surrender is given - that Thor learns that Jotnar have anything other than hatred to call their own.

By tradition a tribute must be made, a price paid equal amount to the folly of their defiance of Asgard. While their humbled king watches, the Jotnar lay at Odin's feet first their greatest treasure, the terrible Casket of Ancient Winters. It's to the relief of every Aesir, and to the pain Jotnar to see the casket pass into Odin's hands. The Jotnar vaults are opened and the hoards given over, gold and rubies primarily, rings, armlets, gold chains as long as Thor is tall, and headpieces with great sweeping golden horns. Then the frost giants lay down pelts in three piles even taller than Thor, great rugs of soft fur in colors snow white, ebony, blue-grey and dun. After this follows the bones of the slain animals, ivory columns yet to be carved, smooth and white. It would take a hundred craftsman their whole lifetime to fashion every bone into a priceless artifact.

Then comes the slaves, three rows, seven deep, of women finer than Thor would have expected. They are giantesses, still tall, still blue, but shorter and paler than their male companions, and with blue-black hair they've braided elaborately. They wear clothing fashioned from leather and fur that exposes enough skin to show that the swirls and markings on their faces extend down to the rest of their bodies in intriguing patterns. Not a one of them could be called fine or dainty, but their curves are abundant in a way that is pleasing to the right kind of man. Thor spies Volstagg making a poor show of appearing uninterested in them, yet to Thor the women's gazes are off putting. They stare back at their new masters with a level gaze showing no emotion.

Th women seem to be the end of the tribute, and Thor looks to see if his father is satisfied. Odin's face is still grim, and his one eye gazes across the open, frozen field to meet Laufey's resentful glare.

After a moment filled with no sound but the howling of the wind, Laufey lowers his gaze to the ground and gestures with his uninjured arm. The women part and a final gift comes forward.

It's another Jotun slave, a man, but small for a race of giants, coming up only to the women's shoulders as he passes between them. Like his female counterparts he has a thick mane of dark hair, but he's left it loose to trail behind him as the wind sifts through it. As he comes to stand before Odin, Thor can see the man is no more than a shade shorter than he. He is not delicate precisely, certainly not to be compared to a highborn Aesir maiden. He is, however, slender and lean in all the ways that Thor himself is broad and heavy. He has long, clever-looking fingers, feet that step silently through the snow, and a sinewy way of moving, graceful and threatening. He is cloaked in white fur secured with a necklace fashioned from a broad curve of gold, and atop his head he wears one of the tall, horned headpieces.

His face is sharp and cold, thin lipped and taut with obvious fury. Thor should not find it lovely, but he does, the prominent cheekbones, the lines swooping across his forehead and trailing down from his lips. Thor wants to transform that face, turn that mouth from a thin line into a soft 'o' of pleasure, bow the proud, straight back. Thor's hands ball into fists as the man kneels before Odin, arms spread wide and neck bent down vulnerably in perfect supplication, yet done with such flourish as to seem sarcastic.

Odin regards the slave for a long time, before finally he nods. "We are satisfied."

Laufey turns his face away from the All-father in futile anguish. The man stands and is led away with the women. Thor's gut twists at seeing him go, but he knows no claim will be laid upon them until they are back on Asgard. He has until tomorrow's feast to convince his father that the man must be his.


For all his famed ferocity on the fields of battle, Thor knows that few fear to meet him in a debate. He must win his war against his father's will in much the same way he often does in a fight of fists rather than words, by tiring his opponent with the steadfast refusal to ever admit defeat. A hundred times Odin shakes his head, and a hundred times Thor insists he will accept no tribute other than the slave.

"Give my gold and other prizes away. Throw them to peasants," he shouts. "I do not care. The only price I will accept for my aid in the war against Jotunheim is Laufey's slave."

"Laufey's slave," Odin repeats. He looks at Thor for some time, measuring his son's sincerity. Finally he sighs, "You shall have as you desire. Your tribute shall be distributed among the other warriors. Your only reward will be the slave."

Thor is unwilling to admit that he did not believe his father would truly refuse him the gold or other riches in exchange for the slave, but he holds true to his word and is satisfied. "Thank you, Father."

At the feast held that night the gifts are divided with much cheering and raising of cups. In good spirits, the All-father gives the Jotnar women as concubines to men "brave enough to distinguish themselves in battle, and fool enough to bite off more than they can chew." To the sound of much bawdy laughter the women are led to their masters, glaring down at their feet as they are appraised with drunken lewdness. Thor expects that when next he sees Volstagg it will be with a black eye.

When the crowd settles, Odin's smile lessens to something more mannered. It is a smile of ceremony.

"To my son, Thor, heir to the throne, who dealt a blow to the Jotun king, Laufey-" he pauses unwillingly at the cheer that goes through the crowd. The All-father raises his hand to ask for silence but it is a long time before he gets it. "And who has seen his gold and gifts given to other men with greater need, I grant a jewel finer than any ever before discovered on Jotunheim."

Odin fixes his one eye upon his son, "I grant you, Thor Odinson, your most humble request of Laufey's most prized possession. I grant you," his father pauses for a moment, Thor squares his shoulders and waits for his due. "Loki."

The doors of the hall open and Thor looks eagerly to them only to be shocked at what he sees. It is the same slave, recognizable in an instant, but his blue, embellished skin is gone, replaced by white skin as smooth as milk. His eyes remain ever as spiteful, yet they are no longer red, but glittering green. He is the very picture of an Aesir in every way but for his obvious distaste for his surroundings.

Flanked by two castle guards he enters the hall like a visiting king in a slow, elegant march that lets each dumbfounded warrior he passes see his full glory. His fur cloak is pushed back behind his shoulders to display the light coverings of leather and gold, banded around his wrists and ankles, and secured about his waist. He still wears his horns, tall, golden curves that sprout from his circlet and arch smoothly over his head to end in sharp points.

He comes to a stop before Odin and bows, somehow making a mockery of the gesture with just a flick of his wrists. "All-father."

"Loki," Odin says. "You may take your place at Thor's side."

Loki's eyes shift from the father to son, and Thor has never once before been afraid to be met and found wanting. He meets Loki's eyes and the heat of the Jotun's gaze is certainly fueled by hatred and not desire. Yet Thor is strangely relieved. Better to be despised by this creature than left unacknowledged like nearly every other person in the room.

For the rest of the feast Loki sits beside Thor, straight-backed and staring ever forward. He does not touch the food and mead offered to him, nor acknowledge Thor's presence again. Thor bides his time as patiently as possible, knowing that the cold marble facade will crack the very moment he reaches for his prize. He prefers that to happen in private where he may respond without the comment of onlookers.

After some time, Odin stands and declares the feast to be over. Thor motions to a servant, "Have Loki taken to my quarters. I would bid my friends farewell."

He would clear his head as well, stepping outside to breathe the night's chilled, clean air and speak freely with his friends. He laughs at Fandral's many jests at Volstagg's expense, and is forced to heed Sif's stern warnings.

"He looks as though he'd just as soon gut you, Thor, than let you bed him."

Thor attempts to keep his face neutral as he shrugs a shoulder. Instead of scolded he feels warmth pool in low in his belly. He decides he's had enough fresh air, and says a final good night to his friends and makes for his chambers in as quick a manner as may become a prince.

He finds guards at his doors and dismisses them with a frown as he steps past his threshold. Thor shuts the doors behind him, turning a heavy lock that sounds across his room, large at as it is.

His prize is sitting upon his bed with arms crossed over his chest, blue-skinned once more. Despite having shed his cloak, he is still wearing his horned crown. The Jotun stares at him with open contempt, and it occurs to Thor that he must be the first to find something to say.

A few possibilities come to mind, but none that will spare him any wrath so he merely states the obvious. Thor takes off his mantle, and hangs it carelessly over a chair. "Blue again, I see."

Loki scoffs, "And here I feared I'd been gifted to an idiot."

The disrespectful sarcasm matters nothing to Thor upon hearing Loki's voice speaking only for him.

"Jotun, then Aesir, and Jotun again. Do you change by the hour?" He continues removing his armor. If Loki were a proper slave, Thor would have ordered him to assist, but he suspects Loki would prove to be of little help.

"I am not Aesir," Loki hisses at him. "I am always Jotun, no matter what the parlor trick."

"Magic then." Thor has always thought of sorcerers and mages as old men bent over and murmuring over dusty scrolls. It's his understanding that it takes a long time for a person to master magic, but perhaps the Jotun is only an apprentice yet. He lays his chest piece upon its rack, and lifts his under-tunic up and over his shoulders.

Loki does not respond to his comment and turns his face away from Thor's exposed chest.

Down to his trousers and boots Thor comes to stand before Loki. He does not reach for him, not yet, but speaks to Loki again. "So why appear as Aesir in the grand hall and Jotun before me now?"

Loki glares up at him for a moment before his features arrange themselves into falsely soft shapes. "If my true form disgusts you, master," and oh, how his voice turns that word into a curse, "I can leave. The night is young and you may yet call for someone more enticing."

Thor sits down upon his bed and pulls a boot off forcing Loki to shift away to avoid Thor's elbow. "I did not say I was disgusted. Answer the question that I asked you."

Loki huffs, annoyed, "A request from the All-father. He felt it best I appear in a form the dull masses of Asgard could understand."

Thor frowns in confusion as he pulls off his other boot. "What difficulty do the Aesir have in understanding a Jotun slave?"

Loki is fast as a cat, springing at Thor with an outraged cry, but Thor has been waiting for the attack since the moment he stepped in the door. Easily he diverts the force of Loki's lunge at him to one side, rolling them over so that he can pin Loki to the bed. Loki struggles against his hold, far stronger than he looks, but still unable to break free.

"Slave," Loki spits, incredulous. "I am a prince, you brainless oaf. Defeat does not suddenly change that I am Laufey's son, second in line for his throne." He sees Thor's brow lift in surprise and his hands, held securely down by Thor's grip on his wrists, curl into claws. "You did not even know. By the moon and stars, you thought me some thrall." Loki throws his head back, shaking it in anguish. "Prince of Asgard? You are but an ignorant beast with noble title, anyone can see that."

"And here I feared I'd been gifted a slave who would be silent the whole night," Thor says, echoing Loki's first words to him.

Loki bites his teeth together and does not say a word more. He lies under Thor's weight for a time, breathing deeply through his anger. Eventually Thor loosens his grip a bit and Loki does not fly at him, remembering perhaps that an attack will gain him only but a brief victory and a long punishment.

"Prince," Thor mutters to himself, spreading his palm over Loki's chest. Loki's skin is cool to the touch, as though the past minutes' struggle were no exertion to him at all. "I suppose there's no flattering you by pointing out that I wanted you when I knew nothing of your status?"

The flash of Loki's blood-colored eyes tell him his answer, but he remains, for the moment, docile under the spread of Thor's thighs.

Thor takes one of Loki's wrists in his hands and pulls free a buckle to slip the guard off, he repeats the action with its opposite, and tosses them both from the bed. He plants the heel of his hand carefully into the sheets beside Loki's head and leans down slowly, eyes open to allow Loki no element of surprise. He brushes Loki's lips with his own and gets no rebuke, indeed no response at all. Loki has again become a statue, deciding to rob Thor of his spirit. Thor can be patient, patient enough to wait out an opponent's surrender at least, and he touches their mouths together more firmly this time. He takes Loki's lower lip gently between his teeth, and that gains him some ground, though nothing more than the clench of Loki's jaw.

He sucks instead, forcing the lip to swell under his and smooths a hand up the side of Loki's cheek to the golden horns he wears to push them off.

Loki growls and comes suddenly alive, pushing him back violently. Thor is caught off guard and thrown against the headboard. "What is this? Don't tell me you sleep in those?"

"Am I asleep now, master? Is this what you call sleep?"

Thor shakes his head, "No but-"

"I earned these, they are mine. Your father let me keep them, and you, a lesser being, shall not take them from me."

Thor's temper rises at the comparison to his father. He does not wish to debate the truth of the statement, but nor does he want to hear it hurled at him like a dagger from his war prize rightfully earned while at his father's side.

He takes a breath before speaking, mindful that he has gotten what he wanted, Loki's spirit once more up to the surface. "It's not a matter of pride, little Jotun Prince, but of practicality. What I would do to you while you wear them, you'll tear holes in the mattress. Do you enjoy sleeping with feathers finding their way into your mouth?"

"I would see your palace burned to the ground," Loki says, hotly. "Destroying something of yours will be a small consolation."

Thor shakes his head, tired of the argument. He longs to taste more of his prize than a few chaste kisses. "So be it," he allows, moving to grab Loki and pull him close, but his hands close over air as Loki pulls away from him.

Thor grabs again and catches Loki's wrist and pulls him across the bed as Loki scrabbles fruitlessly at the sheets.

"Stop," Thor warns, pulling Loki against him only to have the breath knocked out of him with an elbow to his stomach. He tries to take Loki's other wrist to quiet him, but Loki twists it free immediately. Changing tactics Thor shoves his shoulder forward knocking into Loki's chest as he tries get him flat on the bed again and calm him. "I will be as kind as you will let me. Stop."

Loki laughs, spiteful and wild. "And I will spit on your kindness."

He has gotten a knee up into Thor's stomach, trying to leverage Thor off again. Thor briefly lets go of one of Loki's arms to shove at his leg instead. This a mistake for as soon as Loki's arm is freed he brings it up sharply and bashes against Thor's mouth and chin with enough force that had Thor's tongue been between his teeth he might have a little less of it to call his own. His first thought is only to restrain Loki's hands, and it's not until he is grinding the bones of each wrist in his grasp that he realizes that his lip bleeding. Thor swipes his tongue over it and comes away with the iron tang of his own blood, familiar to him as mead. He looks down and Loki tips his chin up, acknowledging the injury with a mean smile.

He does not seem to expect Thor to answer it with a grin of his own.

Thor settles his weight down, pinning Loki's arms to the bed, stilling his hips from attempting to buck him off. He forgoes all thought of a kiss, does not doubt for a second that Loki would savage his split lip until Thor howled. Instead he tucks his head against the long, slim column of Loki's throat and drags his bleeding lip across flesh that is as cool and dry as an autumn morning. He does this until there is a dark streak across Loki's blue flesh, a claim of blood that Thor would leave for all to see if he could. It's a foolish thought, impractical and pointless, and Thor chases it away by sucking the mark from Loki's skin. He worries at the flesh long after the stain is gone, bringing up a bruise of even darker blue to replace it.

Loki still struggles under him, but he is becoming either tired or complacent, and Thor grows thoughtless as he tastes more of him. He can just hear Loki's breathing when he pulls away, soft, little pants rushing past bared teeth, and Thor shuts his eyes to listen. His awareness slips away from him and Loki pulls a hand suddenly free from his hold. He grabs a handful of Thor's hair to pull his head away, but Thor is no stranger to an unfair fighting. Before Loki can really pull, he sinks his teeth into the junction of Loki's throat and shoulder.

Loki cries out, high and startled, tugging on Thor's hair as he goes taut as bow string, but not hard enough to do damage to either of them.

Thor grunts and relents, reaching one hand back to untangle Loki's fingers from his hair. "I will tie you down," Thor threatens.

"If I don't submit?" Loki says, breathless. He gasps as Thor bends his thumb back and finally lets go.

"If you continue to risk harm to yourself."

Loki turns his face away and growls, and it's on the tip of Thor's tongue to point out who now is acting more beast-like, but he decides against it. He laces his fingers with Loki's. Though it lets the Jotun bite his blue nails into Thor's skin it also means that Loki has a harder time twisting away.

He returns to his praise of Loki's throat, using lips, tongue, or teeth at random to hear the sounds Loki fights not to make. Loki's hands squeeze his painfully tight, but Thor pays him no heed. His steady progress downward leads him to the markings the decorate Loki's chest, there are circles on his shoulders, and three lines descend from his collarbone down toward his navel.

His shoulders are burning from the hold he has on Loki, having strained for too long to keep him still. He wishes to relax them, to have his hands free to explore his prize further, to see if Loki's nipples will pebble under his fingers. It's a risk, Loki is a wolf he's holding by the ears, and to let him go may have him flying to Thor's throat, but it's a risk he takes in the name of greater pleasure. He touches his mouth to the marks on Loki's shoulders, the furthest place he can currently reach without moving and loosens his grasp. Loki does not notice, but grips Thor's hands just as tightly before while Thor sucks at his skin.

Eventually Thor sits up, tugging at their interlocked fingers until he is at last freed. Loki's eyes fly open and he starts to lunge once more, but finds Thor's hand at his neck pressing him back down. It's no more than gentle pressure to remind Loki of the benefits of behaving. Loki is still beneath him, breathing smoothly under his palm, gripping Thor's forearm with both hands.

Thor holds his gaze for a moment, and places his other hand over Loki's heart and drags it down until each finger tip has rubbed over the dark blue circle of Loki's nipple. Loki lets go of his arm, shuts his eyes and tips his head up as if suddenly deciding Thor's ministrations do not merit his attention. Thor slides his hand further down to touch the smooth, lean muscles of Loki's stomach, the curve of each hip. He leans down, careful to put no further weight against Loki's throat and takes peaked nipple between his lips. Thor drags his tongue across it again and again as Loki's chest rises a little faster beneath him, and he slowly, slowly begins to slide his hand down from Loki's throat.

Thor has both hands on Loki's hips, nudging them up and more comfortably against his own, before Loki notices he is unfettered, jerking suddenly beneath him. Thor uses his teeth again to stay his attack, biting down on the sensitive nub of flesh between his teeth until Loki tenses with a sharp inhale of breath. Loki concedes still more obedience, perhaps having had enough examples of Thor's willingness to meet his attacks in kind. His hands still curl into fists, but they remain harmlessly at his side for now.

Thor relaxes his bite and attempts to soothe away any pain by laving his tongue across the slight indentations left by his teeth. Loki's fists begin to tremble.

Thor explores the rest of Loki's slim torso uninterrupted, and deems every part of him to be as fine or finer as anything Thor has ever had. For his part, Loki gives every pretense of being bored by the gentle cataloging of the contours of his abdominal muscles, the pattern of lines around his navel. He does startle, however, when Thor grips the leather skirt wrapped around Loki's waist and pulls it open. Loki lays bare beneath Thor but for his horned crown and the strips of leather braided with gold at his ankles.

Thor sits back a moment to regard him, particularly curious of the cock lying plump but not yet hard against Loki's thigh and the balls drawn tightly up beneath it. Thor has seen a fair number of examples in his time, but never any that were a shade of midnight blue. Thor's eyes travel further down Loki's body and spies twin lines wrapped high up around each of Loki's thighs.

He rubs his palm over them, over skin perfectly smooth but for these embellishments and long muscles beneath that tense as he strokes them. Thor pushes Loki's legs apart, slides down the bed to lower his head down to inspect them further. Loki tries to push him away, but Thor shushes him and presses his lips to them, feeling the raised texture of the lines against the skin. Next he touches his tongue to them, first tracing over them, then settling the tip of his tongue between each line and following the furrow down to the inside of Loki's thigh.

Loki shivers out a breath as if he'd been holding it in. "You are a dog," Loki grits out.

Thor bites him gently in mild reproach, teeth bumping over each band. "And you are shaking."

Thor reaches blindly over to a table at the end of the bed and takes the oil that had been set aside. While he pays equal attention to the other thigh, he flips the top of the bottle and dips a finger inside to coat it.

He sits up to the set the bottle down where it will be safe from being upended, and when he glances back to Loki he discovers that for all his denigration his cock has taken interest in the proceedings, eager in a way his master would never confess but cannot hide. Thor does not think he can yet acknowledge it, instead passing over it to slip his hand back and under Loki's backside and press lightly against the cleft.

Loki inhales a sharp breath and yet again makes to throw Thor off.

"You can fight this if you like, little prince," Thor grips Loki's hip tightly to to guarantee his undivided attention. "But it is to your greater benefit than mine. Only a fool would refuse it."

"And how would you know what would benefit me?" Loki asks, insulted.

Thor shrugs one shoulder and circles his finger again, "I know enough to do this for you, if you'll stop fighting me."

Loki gives no clear sign of his choice but for his silence. Thor presses in slowly, blunt, insistent force until he's buried up to the last knuckle. Loki grunts unhappily, and takes his bottom lip between his teeth to put a stopper on any other sound from escaping. Thor rubs his palm low over Loki's belly, and realizes that it should not be so still.

"Breathe," he orders.

Thor is sure Loki's body obeys him on instinct alone, gulping air before Loki returns to himself and tries again to hide all reaction from him.

"Breathe," Thor says again, stroking the stubborn Jotun's side to encourage him. Loki pushes at his arm without thinking, trying to shove Thor away in wordless frustration. It's clear that his attempts to dislodge him results in a rather painful tug in a delicate place as he cries out. Thor presses his hand firmly down on Loki's hips and holds still until Loki's breath is coming evenly again and his eyes are not screwed so tightly shut.

"You'll become accustomed soon enough. In time this may not offend you."

"This?" Loki asks in outrage. "You think it your awkward fumbling that offends me? It's your stupidity I find so offensive. You could choose any of your own maidens and have them come willingly. Despite all attempts to appear good and proper before the other realms I know that Asgard has its own courtesans. All manner of women you could easily fuck till exhausted, and yet you mistake for a lover someone who will never submit and prays every moment for your death. Do you season your food with poison? Keep bilgesnipe as pets?"

"It's not I who insisted on your slavery," Thor points out. Thor withdraws his finger and presses in again; it slides home far easier than before. "I did not know of you until my father insisted Laufey give you as tribute. I only claimed you as my own once you were given."

"And what a prize you have," Loki sneers. "A hateful toy that will not play nicely with you. Your father would have made me a weapon."

"You are a weapon." Thor does not mean to sound so fond.

"A sorcerer at the beck and call of Asgard," Loki hurls back. "He knows-" Loki's take two handfuls of Thor's sheets as Thor presses in again, twisting them tightly in his fists as he swallows a gasp. "Knows of my potential. You would be content to have me a whore."

"Whores are for anyone to have," Thor says, reasonably. "You are mine. No one may touch you but me."

"Better to be a whore, then. Whores are for those who can pay the price," Loki counters.

Thor frowns, pulling his hand away to wet a second finger. Loki's legs reflexively close and he must spread them again before pressing both fingers in. Loki clenches his teeth at the breach but does not forget to breathe.

"I have paid a price," Thor tells him, holding still while Loki breathes through the stretch. "A dear one. My share of the gold, gems, and ivory, my father's disappointment. It will take a long time to earn back the difference."

Loki throws his head back and laughs at Thor, tendons in his throat in sharp relief. "What good is that to me? Did the treasure pass to my hands?"

"It may yet." Thor spreads his fingers and Loki cannot stop his whine. He searches with his fingertips, rubbing small circles until Loki's hips suddenly snap up. "Perhaps you will curry my favor and demand I bring back gifts for you from when I campaign. I think you could manage it if you tried."

When Loki can catch his breath he glares up Thor and opens his mouth to let loose more insults, but Thor rubs the same spot again and the words never form beyond choked vowels.

Thor is happy to abandon talking, to work until two fingers and then a third encounter no resistance as they push in and out. Loki does in fact tear Thor's sheets by throwing his head back with too much force, the sharp tips of his golden horns digging into the mattress. Thor would chastise him, but the way Loki's throat works as he does it is too thrilling a sight to interrupt.

Thor has been hard and waiting for anything more satisfying than muted friction since the struggle with Loki that split his lip. Coming to the end of his patience, he shifts away from Loki to finally undress completely. He throws his legs over the side of the bed and pushes off his breeches in haste, tossing them away. He turns just as Loki has gathered his wits up enough to realize what is coming to him next. Thor takes up the oil, wetting his palm, and Loki pulls his knees up, chest rising and falling too quickly as he lifts himself up onto his elbows.

The expression on Loki's face as Thor finally allows himself to cup his erection can only be called calculating. Thor cannot know the nature of the plan Loki is forming, be it a physical attack, or one of words, or even magic, but he cups his dry hand around Loki's knee and drags him across the blankets until their hips collide with a quick, sharp tug to topple Loki's thoughts if he can. Perhaps it works because Loki's grand scheme turns out to be to go for Thor's eyes.

Thor turns his face up and away from prying fingers and gathers Loki's wrists together in an iron grip as quickly as he can. Loki manages to slip free several times and when Thor has the both of them pinned back beneath one hand they are both panting like horses after a race. Their grappling has frayed Thor's nerves and he cannot stop himself from desperately rubbing his cock against Loki's hips, shivering at the contact of Loki's constantly cool skin against his own overheated flesh.

With his free hand he arranges Loki's hips to better please him, spreading his thighs widely between Loki's to grant him enough room to reach down and take himself in hand.

Loki seems surprised to discover that this is how Thor shall mount him. His hips buck angrily, "What are you doing?"

Thor grunts, missing his mark and dragging the tip of his cock over the smooth flesh of Loki's backside. He takes a deep breath, needing to center himself again. "I cannot quite decide if you are yet untouched or too stubborn to understand, but still yourself as I would have you."

Loki, of course, does not cease his squirming. "To take me like a wife? Fool."

"If this is how the Jotnar take to being married," Thor says, pressing his weight down harder to pin him, "I suppose I should not have been surprised they were so fierce in battle."

"You're no more high minded than a beast," Loki hisses as Thor's hips thrust forward a few blind times as they struggle, "you should rut like one."

"On any other night I will gladly listen to your suggestions on how I should take you, but tonight I will have you this way and no other." Thor grips the base of his cock and finally, finally fucks in.

Loki cannot respond, taking great gasping breaths as Thor seats himself in the shallowest shoves he can manage. He groans, open mouthed, against Loki's collarbone when their hips connect and he can go no further. Thor's panting is almost as fast as Loki's beneath him, though his is a struggle of too much pleasure rather than too much strain. When the wave recedes and Thor can think with some clarity he hooks his elbow behind one of Loki's knees and pulls it up, folding Loki beneath him and giving the Jotun no leverage to retreat from him.

He starts to thrust, and the pleasure, though long delayed, is simply exquisite.

Loki jostles beneath him, bent nearly in half and still restrained at the wrists. "I cannot breathe," Loki whines.

"You have breath enough to speak," Thor says, quoting an old wrestling master he had once trained with. He lessens the angle of Loki's leg a scant few degrees, and shoves his hips forward again. And then again.

"Animal," Loki tries to say, but it's broken with the force of Thor's thrusts. He does not try to speak further through the steady slap of Thor's body against his.

By now Thor is covered in a sheen of sweat, but everywhere they touch the press of Loki's skin is refreshing. He rubs his forehead against Loki's cheek to cool it. He counts it a victory that Loki does not shirk him, only keeps huffing small breaths out with every thrust while doing a poor job of keeping his hips from rocking minutely under Thor. As heat begins to build even higher within him Thor raises himself up from Loki's throat to search his face, but Loki's head is turned into the sheets.

"Look at me," he demands breathlessly.

Loki only curses him, words muffled. He does not appear the least bit chastened when Thor fucks harder for the insult.

Despite the assurance of submission it affords him, and for all that pitting his strength against Loki's anger first excited him, holding Loki down prevents him from finding the best angle to drive himself to the end. Thor makes the call to let go both of Loki's wrists and knee so that he may fully brace himself against the bed with both arms. Loki's hands fly immediately, landing first on Thor's shoulders, digging his nails into the skin, not so much scratching at his sweat-slick skin as tearing at it. Thor hisses but does not stop his thrusts or want to. Loki's thighs squeeze around his middle painfully tight and Thor's groans as his breath is pushed from his lungs. Yet again he bites his teeth into Loki's skin, this time into the meat of his shoulder.

Loki whimpers before taking a fistful of Thor's hair and tugging it sharply. Thor relents and still Loki pulls, bending his neck up and back. No doubt he means it to ruin Thor's pleasure, but it only spurs a harder thrust. Loki makes a soft, punched noise that makes Thor look down. Loki's mouth open and rounded, his eyes tightly shut. Thor slows his hips, distracted by having achieved what his heart first desired upon seeing Loki standing before him, lithe and proud and so very angry. Beauty like a knife's edge, iron forged will and royal blood, and it's his.

Loki's eyes blink open, and Thor wonders if he will ever stop being startled at their crimson color. Loki scowls under Thor's scrutiny and pulls meanly at his hair again. As before Thor's hips snap faster and harder, his own eyes shutting at the feel of it, burying himself so far, and Loki keens out as quietly at the back of his throat and pulls again. Thor grunts and obliges him, thrusting hard enough that the bed and its heavy frame of oak and brass starts to scrape slightly on the floor.

Thor cannot speak, cannot think beyond the jolt of pleasure that courses through him with every thrust, bright and powerful as lightning, so of course Loki begins to taunt him.

"This is what you really are," Loki says. His voice is rough and broken, but he forms his words carefully, determined to be heard. "This is your truth, Odinson. Strip away the gold and glory and you're just a base animal, a groaning, sweating, selfish, stupid-"

Loki cuts off with a cry and Thor looks between their bodies and sees that one of Loki's hand has stolen down and Loki has taken himself in his hand. The knowledge that Loki is taking his own pleasure makes Thor's hips stutter their rhythm, rolling in tight circles as he tries to bury himself as deep as possible.

Defiant even now Loki insists, "You're no master of me." Then he moans and the sound feels like velvet sliding over Thor's brittle control.

"Finish," Thor says, and even he is unsure if it's an order or plea. He's desperate for his own release, can feel it rising up, too strong to deny but he would have Loki fall with him.

"I can't-" Loki's legs tighten around him, as he throws his head back, heaving and sobbing for breath. "I cannot stand you."

It sounds true enough coming from his bitten lips but the mewling noises that follow sound just as sincere. Thor is willing to accept both as truths, he'll take Loki's pleasure now and hope that affection may come after.

"Finish," he says again, "Loki-" He might have begged had Loki made him wait any longer to feel the sudden spill of Loki's seed across his stomach.

With a sigh, Thor lets himself go, hips moving as hard and as fast as they're able. The pleasure of each thrust hits him like physical blows, echoing through his entire body, down to his toes, to the top of his head. Thor's breath catches in his throat as he slams headlong into his climax, fucking twice more before staying buried to the hilt. Loki does not hold or soothe him, and he certainly whispers no praise, but he lets Thor push his face into his throat and groan as he is wrung out and drained.

Thor is left with almost nothing, no thought, no strength, no words, no care that he ever once thought he needed such things. He is content simply to rest and be aware of only the lingering tremors of pleasure in his body, the pounding of his blood in his veins.

Loki's patience, if it even exists at all, runs out quickly. "Get off," he says, shoving at Thor's shoulder in a feeble attempt to unseat him.

Thor marshals up enough strength to roll onto his back beside Loki. He heaves a great sigh as he enjoys the slight breeze from the open doors to the balcony.

"Sweaty boor," Loki says, but there is little heat in his words. Certainly no more fondness, but the blaze of his indignant anger seems to have finally burned itself down to embers.

"We cannot all be cold-blooded, little prince." Thor scrubs a hand through the sparse patch of hair beneath his navel and comes away with traces of Loki's release. He smirks, "Were breaking a sweat the only gauge of your pleasure, I would be disappointed."

After a moment of resentful silence, Loki promises, vehemently, "I'm going to murder you in your sleep." Yet for all his conviction, Loki is still on his back, legs spread open carelessly with one knee raised.

Thor's laughter rises up to the ceiling, "Needless as you have already slain me."

Loki grumbles something unintelligible as he sits up gingerly and finally removes his horns, shaking his hair out as he does. Thor watches him as he sets the headpiece carefully on the table beside Thor's bed, the way his toes dig into the blankets, knee bent and the firm, smooth muscle of his thigh, rounded backside and the curve of his spine up to where his shoulders disappear into his raven hair. Thor is gripped with some strange flavor of happiness he's never tasted before. He raises up on one elbow and reaches out to fold his hand over Loki's waist. Loki smacks his hand, but Thor holds fast and pulls him across the bed until Loki is pressed against him.

Loki pushes against Thor's chest, but Thor locks his arms around securely Loki's waist as he nuzzles his cool cheek. Loki ducks his kiss, and Thor reaches up one hand to his hair and grips it gently as a warning. Loki submits to his next attempt, though he does not stop pushing against chest the entire time Thor places insistent, searching kisses over and over upon his lips. Thor refuses to release him until Loki's mouth begins to move, ever so slightly under his, small presses of his lips, and the slight scrape of teeth in what could be concession or a spiteful accident.

When Thor pulls away, both of their mouths have smears of fresh blood across them. Thor's split lip has re-opened. He sucks on it to stem the bleeding, and watches the tip of Loki's tongue sneak out to taste the smear of crimson.

His startling red eyes flick up to meet Thor's as he swallows.

"Sleep now," Thor says, cupping Loki's face. "Murder me in the morning."

Loki bids him goodnight by blowing out a breath in irritation and rolling over to show Thor his back, shoulder raised defensively as if to ward away any attempt to touch him.

Thor searches the sheets for a corner and, finding one, tugs it until they are both covered. He tucks arm under his head and soon falls asleep. The torches burn themselves out.


The next morning Loki is no sweeter or more demure, but he is starving and apparently unwilling to start a fight before breakfast is brought to them. He keeps his back to Thor but does not shirk Thor's fingers as they trace across his skin. A servant knocks, and enters at Thor's call. When he turns his head back to face Loki, he finds the Jotun in his arms has become an Aesir again.

Thor knows he himself is covered, but Loki makes no move to pull the sheets any higher on his now-pale hips. Instead Loki notices that servant's eyes dart several times to him, and stretches languidly in Thor's sheets, shameless of his nudity. He laughs meanly when the servant's hands falter as he pours the tea.

Thor sighs, and dismisses him. "I shall manage the rest."

The servant disappears with a whispered apology.

"Lech," Loki sneers, as his skin blushes from white to blue. He crawls across the bed and takes two handfuls of fruit. "Do the Aesir expect no decorum from your servants?"

"Clearly not, as I expect none from my slaves," Thor says, displeased with Loki's display.

Loki pays no attention to Thor's annoyance and takes too large a bite from his apple. Juice runs down his wrist and he flicks it off onto Thor's sheets. Thor would be angry but his bed is already in need of new ones. He will need to warn all that come in with a mind to serve to give Loki a wide berth and to take their inevitable grievances directly to Thor himself and not his father.

They do not speak any more as they eat. Loki consumes twice as much as Thor, preferring fruit and sweet breads, but he leaves nothing untried.

After taking his fill, Thor leaves to bathe quickly while Loki reclines against his pillows, sipping his tea and sampling a few more morsels at random. Afterward, Thor catches a glimpse of himself in the mirror and carefully tongues the bright red split down his bottom lip. It's as subtle as a waving flag in an empty field, but he does not mind.

He comes back into the bedroom and Loki is wearing his horns again, though they do help him look more foreboding, they do not fully hide the fact that he seems ill at ease. Under Loki's feigned disinterest, Thor dresses in clothes meant for practice in a dusty arena.

"I would train with my friends," he tells Loki as he takes up Mjolnir. "But I will return before the evening."

"I shall lie here breathless for your return," Loki says sourly.

"You'd do better having a bath," Thor teases. Loki takes more offense than is due, and throws an apple core. He throws it wide and it flies harmlessly by Thor's shoulder and skitters across the floor. Thor frowns, but Loki's face gives him pause

He hesitates a moment, grip twisting a bit on his hammer's handle. He cannot take Loki with him, but he tries to think of what would be kind. "What would you like to occupy you while I am gone?"

Loki looks at him for a long time, as if measuring Thor's sincerity and the merits of a hundred requests. Finally, he says, "Books. I think I could bear the hateful boredom with a few books."

Thor nods, "Then they will be sent."

Loki gives no sign of gratitude, but rises to head in the direction of the baths. Thor leaves with no further promises or farewells.


His friends are already assembled. Sif is clear-eyed, standing with her feet spread apart and her hands on her hips. Fandral is telling a meandering story, a sure sign that he is feeling last night's cups, and trying to delay the start of training as long as possible. Hogun reclines against a pillar, half hidden in shadow while he listens. And as for Volstagg, his eye is indeed swollen and black, and taking too deep a breath causes him to curse and hold his side.

He greets Thor, taking in his split lip and the red marks on his neck, with a nod of understanding.

Sif sees the gesture and glances away, annoyed. "You will be worthless today, I see."

"Come now," Fandrall insists, no doubt seeing the opportunity to delay training with more conversation. "We cannot all be content to celebrate a victory by weighing gold and counting gems from our share of the tribute."

Sif ignores him entirely. "I will spar with Hogun. You two may pretend with each other that you wish to train instead of return to bed to dally."

Volstagg raises his eyebrows at her. "You think I wish to return to bed? Lady Sif, I barely escaped it with my life. Already weary from one battle I found myself locked in another with an even meaner opponent than any I faced on Jotunheim. I managed to negotiate a truce when I offered her ale. She drank every drop in my house and my neighbor's, and then broke my bed."

Volstagg endures their laughter with his usual good nature. "Frankly, lady, I'd prefer one of your beatings to another round with the giantess, Seldwar." He nods again at Thor, seeking his agreement. "Like bridling a force of nature."

Thor laughs, and tightens his hand around Mjolnir. He finds he likes the comparison, Loki as a force of nature, vicious and unpredictable as thunder and lightning, Thor's storms. It explains some of the attraction at least.

"And you, Thor?" Fandral asks. "How did you fare against that lovely runt your father was so reluctant to give you?"

Thor smiles readily, but finds he is unwilling to say. He sees in his friends' faces well-meant assumptions, but has no desire to explain why they are false. He will share no part of Loki, not even with them.

"I would leave talk of what happens in bed in my chambers and talk of fighting when I am in an arena." His friends hoot at him, but Thor stands his ground. "Lady Sif? A round?"

Sif raises an unconvinced eyebrow at him, but takes up her staff anyway.


On top of the many other annoyances Loki must endure, the bathwater on Asgard can apparently only be drawn in two temperatures, too hot and merely tepid. Loki swirls his fingers in the water and whispers a child's spell to cool it before he steps down into the water. The cold is a soothing balm on all his many aches, and he slips down into the water until his chin is just touching its surface, dipping his head back to wet his hair. He rolls his wrists, carefully feeling where the bone and sinew are sore with a slight wince. There's a dull ache, too, in his lower back and his thighs are sore as if he spent last night at a dead run for hours. They are the after effects of Thor's handiwork, his marks, and yet Loki is not truly bothered to name them.

He rests for a time with his eyes closed, happy to be alone and to need answer only to himself. The novelty, however precious, soon wears of and Loki opens his eyes and begins to learn the details of the room, curious and bored. Nearly every surface his gaze falls upon is covered in marble or gold. Loki sighs. Would that the battle had turned another direction, and all this had been laid at his family's feet. His father would not have been satisfied until even the golden taps of the bath Loki now found himself in were added to the pile. Odin would have wept at his ruin and Thor-

Loki pauses, turning that thought over in his mind.

Proud, strong, stupid Thor would surely have railed foolishly against what he believed to be an outrage and offense. Graceless in what would be his first defeat, willfully ignorant of the truth that he showed no sympathy when the war price was paid to him and his father. Thor being a first born son, the All-father would not have been expected to part with him. Not unless Helblindi had been killed. An unpleasant thought, though it would have Loki next in line for the throne. Loki considers the idea, a first born for a first born. His father would surely have taken Thor with the intention of killing him, meaning to break Odin's heart. Loki would have needed to speak quickly and shrewdly to stay his father's hand.

And he would have. Alone and with no one's eyes upon him, he can admit that. He would have seen the heir to the throne of Asgard clothed in tawny furs, and bound in chains of gold to match his hair. He would have paraded his golden prize through Jotunheim's ice halls, let him glitter and shine in all the dark shadows of Loki's homeland.

Then taken him to his chambers, pushed him down to his knees and forced him to take Loki between his lips. Loki would have made himself the master of all that arrogance and impulsiveness. Likely Thor would have fought him, just as Loki had, but in chains his struggle would have proved just as futile. Perhaps he would have eventually come to find the position pleasurable, just as Loki had.

Loki shivers, and it owes nothing to the cold water. Seeing the Odinson on the field of his people's defeat, garish in his red cape and yellow hair, chest puffed up and chin thrust forward, and his hands still flecked with Jotnar blood, he could not have known the role he would come to play in Loki's fate. Loki had dismissed him as the simply most vainglorious of a pompous people, and quickly returned to the far more important puzzle of the reason for his bondage. He was wholly unprepared for the abject humiliation of discovering that Odin's grand plan for Jotunheim's stolen son was to make him a play thing for his own.

He was sure that he would die of shame, or else murder the Aesir prince and be killed for the crime. But everything about Thor was at once so base and beautiful. Everything Thor had, he had in abundance. Strength and desire, kindness and carelessness, good humor and foul temper in amounts fit to overwhelm Loki completely. In the end, nearly all the promises Loki had made to himself at the start of the night were soon broken because Thor simply wanted them to be. Reason anew to die of shame.

Loki sighs and rises from the water.

He leaves the baths and comes out into the bedroom where the mattress and sheets have been replaced. His own clothes have been taken away and new ones are draped across the blankets, loose, filmy things meant for a concubine, not a prince. He refuses to put them on. Thor's clothes are bulky and far too large, but Loki finds a pair of trousers that fit well enough to suffice.

As Thor had promised a pile of books has been placed on the table for him and Loki chooses one at random to take with him back to the bed. He flips the pages while lying on his stomach, at times rolling his eyes at the dry, florid prose the Aesir author favors. Some ways into the book he comes across a description of a spell, and frowns. He cannot know if it is real or imagined magic, and no details are given on how to perform the incantation. His own magic is still developing, but its based purely on natural talent and tenacity. Jotunheim is no realm of mages, and he'd fast outpaced his teachers. The scholars of Asgard could teach him, would have taught him if he's guessed Odin's plan correctly.

Now what fate awaits him but to grow soft and lazy lying in bed all day and waiting Thor's prodigious pleasure.

Useless anger rises up in him again, but he forces it down. He thinks instead of the options available to him. There is always the vague hope that Laufey will wage a war of revenge. Yet at their parting Loki saw his father's spirit was all but broken, and Loki does not find much comfort in the idea of waiting to be rescued. Loki had obviously made a grave miscalculation in thinking he could make himself enough of a nuisance to be rejected. Having learned what he has of Thor it certainly stands to reason that Loki could seduce him into granting him more and more indulgences, yet Loki's pride rebels wholeheartedly at the thought. He will not risk degrading himself only to be cast aside should Odin's brat become bored. Worse still, if Thor remained infatuated. What further concessions Thor could get Loki to allow with years to make the attempt, Loki does not want to know.

Loki thinks of the casket, well kept in a vault, but still close by. If he could only manage to get to it he could teach the Aesir a lesson about the dangers of thinking Jotnar could be kept as pets.

He drops his head in frustration, there is no course of action available but to wait. He must bide his time and see what information he may pry from Thor or his father, must wait to learn how the casket may be reached. He must learn all the weaknesses of his captors and exploit them. With patience and cunning there may yet be a time when he will see Thor in chains. For now, though, Loki will take his pleasure as he can.

He falls asleep while reading as the sun climbs toward to its noonday peak and wakes to the press of Thor's mouth to the back of his neck. Loki is groggy from the unexpected nap, limbs heavy and slow to move. Thor sucks lightly at his skin, and Loki hums before he can stop himself. Thor chuckles, a low rolling sound from deep in his chest, and goosebumps raise on Loki's skin, hearing it so close to his ear.

Loki scowls, "Finished bashing out what little of your brains still remains already?"

"My friends are too kind to finish the job." He presses more kisses to Loki's spine, and takes Loki's hips in his broad hands. His mouth and hands are like brands, hotter than anything Loki has ever known. "I'm sure that you, however, will spare me no mercy."

"None, Odinson." The muscles in Loki's back coil, ready to release into action and start the contest with Thor anew. "None at all."