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Morning After Dark

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Loki has a way of drinking wine that enraptures Thor. It is all elegance and grace – the fluidity of the fingers curling around the stem of the cup, the flick of the wrist as he lifts it to his mouth, and the gentle tilt of a chin to drink.

Thor thinks he shouldn’t watch his brother this closely – because, of course, they are brothers. Yet, each time, at dinner, when Loki reaches out for his wine, to sip, to drink, to drain – it didn’t matter which – Thor would pause and track him, like a good hunter might.

The exposition of skin as he raises his head, the bobbing of Loki’s throat as he swallows, the green-blue veins running down to disappear under a black tunic and gold chain – all of it details that stick to his mind like the sweetest honey.

He would sink his teeth into the side of the neck, tonguing at the vein under his brother’s jaw to feel the flutter of a pulse, and press his nose right against Loki’s skin and smell him, all ice and peppermint and Thor’s own heavy ozone draped over them both like the thickest of furs.

Loki glances over him. ‘Yes, brother?’ he says, mouth obstinately turned downwards in a frown.

Ah, but Loki would never let him, knows Thor, who smiles in turn, ‘a little wine on your tunic, brother. Your table manners are quite bad.’

‘And this coming from an oaf,’ mutters his brother as he checks his clothes, only to be scolded along with Thor by Frigga.

-

Thor is a sensual person – he touches to learn, and perhaps that is why he knows Loki best for they have spent a good half of a millennia as children playing, wrestling, sleeping alongside one another. Yet now, Thor feels the years – without touch or warm embrace – as a yawning gap between them both.

No longer does Thor know how Loki’s heart beats or how Loki’s chest goes concave at each breath, nor the way Loki can fold himself pressed against Thor’s side.

He sometimes finds himself reaching out – a hand ruffling Loki’s hair which his brother immediately shrugs off with an irritated scoff or Thor’s fingers curled around Loki’s shoulder, pulling him closer, that his brother squirms to get out of as soon as he can.

He is delighted to find that Loki does not mind when Thor catches him around the neck, digits pressed along his throat, pads of his fingers on the first vertebrae of his spine, thumb tucked underneath the jawbone to where it curves to his ear, and he uses it as if he would an embrace, the closest he will ever get.

Sometimes Thor aches with want, and Loki’s smile makes him want to crush his mouth against his brother – god, his brother – until he can only recognize the tang of the wine from dinner, the bloom of blood from Loki’s cut lip after he bites down dripping down his throat, reminding him how good sin tastes.

-

A millennia later or perhaps longer than that, it is hard to keep track in the mess that are Thor’s feelings for his brother, he is thrown into Earth and resurrected as a new man. Yet, when he comes to Asgard, it is not his brother he sees, but someone who has stolen his face and still – still, for an unexplainable moment, when Loki yells at him, Thor aches.

Later, Odin and Frigga tell him very quietly of Loki’s heritage and it is a wave of relief that crashes over Thor. Something like – I can feel these things, I can have these things, these things are within my reach –

Which is a laughable thought, in hindsight, when he is reminded that they have still been bonded through love as brothers – not lovers, not friends – but the one relationship that lets the drips of offence taste honey-sweet and hurt poison-good on Thor’s tongue.

-

(Take this memory of Loki’s perfect abstinence:

He reads and Thor seats himself beside his brother, arm sliding over Loki’s shoulderblades around him. Loki groans and tries to squirm out of the touch until the arm is reluctantly dropped and pouts at his blonde brother.

‘Will you come to the feast after I have returned from the hunt?’ asks Thor genially, tucking his hand beside the other into his lap. One rejection is enough.

Loki glances at him, closing his book, thumb in between the pages to mark his place. ‘I do not like feasts.’

‘But you must like me.’

Thor can see the string of thoughts slip-slide through Loki’s head, waiting for the sharp retort but Loki gets up from the table in the library, and smiles. ‘Perhaps if you can keep your hands off me till then. And during the feast as well.’

Thor grins through gritted teeth and accepts.

Loki – ever wary of touch and entirely clean of incestuous feelings, of course. How could Thor think of him as anything less?)

-

Then his little brother tries to kill him, with some unrestrained violence that Thor has never witnessed in Loki to this day. It certainly dulls down any wanting for Loki as a physical lover, but, being the victim of sentiment, Thor still wants Loki with him – beside him.

He thinks that perhaps his feelings are pure if he can erase the lust in them. That it is very natural for a sibling to want his brother close to him, smiling with him, laughing with him, held close and tight in an embrace that would break bones and suffocate them both.

Yet, even that is a product of incest, he knows. Siblings fall apart, grow distanced, spend life on amicable terms when they go their separate ways. They do no crave one another as Thor wants Loki, and nor do they pray for soul-crushing embraces and semi-worship.

Thor buries the ache under physicality and violence and destruction. Loki screams, blood on his mouth, blood on his teeth, blood on him, and Thor beats him down.

He joins The Avengers soon after that, and waits for Loki to return to him.

-

(If Thor was to trace his feelings in a linear manner with Midgardian ages as equivalents for the centuries hidden in Aesir lives, it may have started like this:

At three, he receives a little brother – squalling and pouting and adoring in that he curls right up into Thor’s hands and is a warm bundle in his arms, and from then on, they are inseparable. Thor spoils Loki rotten, brings him everything, amuses him, loves him as fiercely as the brightest flames in the pits of Nidavellier. Undying and dangerous - sometimes, Thor wonders if Loki had ever loved him with as much passion as his brother did, but it is a moot point now.

At twelve, Thor discovers sexuality from a hasty tutoring session and his own dreams, and then drifts along till Loki is fourteen and he seventeen that he looks at his brother once more, again, with that perfect adoration, until the first hint of lust drops into his blood. It collides well with his love for Loki, for that love is still something like brotherly instinct instead of incest. Yet, night after night, day after day, nightmares, daydreams, fantasies and a hand on his cock tell him, quickly enough, that he has fallen into sin, and quite deeply too.

From then on, life is an aching, wanting torture, relieved only by Loki’s quiet distancing of himself through touch and seidr, teasing Thor, resenting him in the recesses of his mind as Thor learns later. War and hunt and camaraderie are heady distractions, of course, and perhaps it was Thor too who distances himself from his brother.

Years become decades become centuries become millennia. In my youth, Thor likes to say now. In my youth. As if he has changed. As if anything about him is now purified from separation. The only thing different about his life, thinks Thor with a twist of a grin, is that self-loathing is now a familiar taste in the back of his throat.)

-

He lives in a sleepy apartment building tucked away in a corner of other sleepy, brick-built buildings, with a bakery across the street and a small grocery store around the corner. Stark buys it for him when Thor requests for separate living accommodations.

His teammates are fine people, and he visits them in the Stark Tower each day. He simply wishes to keep his nights to himself. His nights are to Loki and quiet desires, like bringing him home, kissing his neck, curling up beside him, face tucked in the crook of a bony shoulder and thin neck, until he can only smell the Jotun ice scent of his brother.

It comes during the eve of summer, a stuttering knock on his door, then a thud and a long scraping noise as if something collapsed and dragged itself down his front door. Thor opens it, of course, after some trepidation, but Mjolnir is with him and a god can easily quell any danger.

He does not expect his little brother to fall into his apartment, and Thor catches him around the shoulders, bringing him up to see Loki’s fluttering eyes and a whispered, ‘Thor,’ before his eyes roll up into his head and he’s unconscious.

Thor drapes his brother onto his bed, stripping him of his golden, Aesir armor, lust a bygone thought when he has more things to worry about. Loki lies, breathing shallow – but still breathing – in his black trousers and tunic, and Thor can see remnants of an injury that ripped through the side of the tunic, baring white skin coloured with blood.

He can string together the facts in his head – Loki, injured, healed himself with his seidr, but did not take in the fact that it would drain him of energy, and so had to find refuge to rest up and recharge before he could continue.

He wonders if it was some fancy that leads Loki to him, or some instinct. Thor is his brother after all – and while the ties are not solidified by blood, they are by time. For the Aesir and Jotuns have always had time. Time to play, to hunt, to fight, to war, to bleed, to die.

How Loki finds his apartment is a mystery, and why Loki is injured a bigger one. Thor does not question these things. He has Loki safe with him, and Thor savours having a moment with him that does not involve violence or hate. He brings a chair beside the bed and seats himself to wait until his brother wakes. He places water on the bedside table, along with a First Aid kit that Rogers had given him – you never know, Thor, even demigods bleed (and Thor has no heart to correct him on his lineage) – and some soup leftover from his earlier dinner if Loki wishes to have sustenance.

It is not an unfamiliar feeling to wait. Thor has waited for a long time for his brother. It is not a task to him anymore, yet nor does he take any pleasure from the activity. It simply is. He presses his fingers against Loki’s neck, feels the flutter of a pulse, and breathes.

-

Loki awakes in the middle of the night, poison green eyes flying open to take in the room around him and slide his gaze onto a half-asleep Thor in his chair. Thor smiles languidly when he sees his brother has come to and stretches his arms high up over his head to get out the kinks from sitting in a chair so long. Then he notices it – with a spike of longing – how Loki’s eyes trace down from his face to his torso and down, before sliding back up again, mouth curling.

‘There is water here, brother. I can bring you food,’ says Thor, feeling obscenely loud as he tries to ignore what he is sure he has half-imagined. He stands up, and then sees Loki reach out and curl his fingers around his wrist.

‘Stay,’ breathes Loki, definitely smirking now, his face cast in a blue-white glow from the Midgardian light outside the bedroom window. Thor nods, slowly, and seats himself back down on the chair.

‘Water,’ says his brother, and Thor hands him the glass, now warm, but Loki drains it anyway, propping himself up on an elbow. He places the glass back on the table and looks at his ripped tunic, crusted in blood from an injury that has now disappeared. Loki turns his head to Thor, expression pleading, and Thor sees it then – a hazy, out of focus glaze over the poison green eyes. He’s half-awake, thinks Thor, he doesn’t know what he’s doing.

‘Brother, please, help me out of this,’ murmurs Loki, stretching his arms to hook around the headboard of the bed, ‘this tunic is truly disgusting.’ Thor swallows down any spike of lust and does so – surprised how evenly his fingers move as they peel off the tunic and toss it aside.

Loki arches his back, sliding a hand down his torso slowly, fingers curled just so for his nails to leave almost imperceptible red lines. ‘Hm, no wound here anymore. Want to check for me, brother?’ He’s laughing, Thor is sure, and he has no idea what he is doing.

But Thor has better restraint than that. Thor has waited for millennia; he can handle a few semi-hallucinatory come-ons by a brother who he knows wants to kill him on a good day. He shakes his head, smiling, ‘go back to sleep, I shall prepare some food for when you wake.’

No,’ snaps Loki, vehement, reaching out again to grasp Thor’s wrist. ‘Stay.’ So, Thor reluctantly sits himself back down, and watches his brother curl up on his side, facing Thor with his hand still a hot brand against his brother’s skin.

‘Do you remember,’ starts Loki, eyes half-open, voice a bit dreamy, ‘what I would do after we were put in separate rooms when we were young?’

Thor knows Loki’s reminiscing will lead him to more hate, so he remains still and silent, not willing to encourage the slow drop back into those feelings. Loki continues to speak, however, as if he has not noticed Thor’s obstinate silence.

‘Whenever there would be storm with lightning and thunder and the palace would tremble, I would hurry to your room, and slip under the covers, right next to you, shaking. Do you remember that?’ He looks up at his brother, and Thor nods.

‘I thought you were scared of the storms,’ he says quietly.

Loki finds this amusing for he laughs, loud and unabashed. Once the mirth disappears, he grins. ‘No. I just wanted to be with you. I would shake from anticipation. If you would let me in or not.’

‘Of course I would,’ replies Thor mindlessly, feeling surprised at the admission. Loki’s face turns pleading again.

‘Come lay yourself then, beside me, please, Thor,’ he begs softly, ‘big brother, please.’ Loki slides to the far side of the bed, carefully, as if he is still injured – he must be sore, thinks Thor – and gestures for Thor to lie down.

Gingerly, Thor slides from his chair onto the bed, feeling the warmth left behind by his brother, and grits his teeth to keep his body still. He does not know what is going to happen, nor what his brother has in mind, but he imagines it will be painful.

Instead, Loki presses against him, body lining up, mouth tucked in the space between Thor’s neck and shoulder, a leg slung over Thor’s thighs and an arm over the chest, fingers slipping into the fine, long, golden hair.

‘You’re so warm, brother,’ hums Loki, evidently happily, but his eyes gleam in the dark, with that glaze, and Thor wonders – almost hysterically – what his brother is thinking. ‘Perhaps you should lose this Midgard clothing. It is unseemly.’

‘I’m quite fine, Loki,’ replies Thor tersely, yet he can’t help the way his fingers trace along the white forearm slung across his chest, fingers tracing lithe muscle to the knob of Loki’s wrist and his spider-fingers. Loki makes a sound of pleasure.

‘Always so stubborn,’ he says, and vaults himself onto Thor, straddling him with an unprecedented speed that Thor thought he would be incapable of while drugged on his own seidr.

But, now, there are fingers skirting the hem of his shirt and Loki pulling it up and off him. Thor does not think – simply raises his arms and lets it end up tossed on the floor along with Loki’s tunic. He hopes his brother can’t feel the way his cock twitches in want at the pressure against his groin. The sight is stunning to him, to say the least – Loki half-naked in the electric light, hair mussed, eyes glittering.

Then, Loki rolls his hips.

‘Brother,’ stutters Thor, hands fitting around Loki’s waist to lift him off but Loki squirms, batting at his hands like a petulant child.

‘Why won’t you have this, brother?’ whines Loki, bending over, his breath skimming over Thor’s cheek, ‘look at me. Look. I’m here – ’ punctuated by another rut against Thor, ‘god, brother.’

‘You don’t know what you’re doing, Loki,’ says Thor, his voice firm, despite the way Loki drags his nails down his chest, catching a nipple and sending a jolt down to his cock.

‘Yes, I do,’ snarls Loki in turn, nails turning vicious as they dig into Thor’s skin at his hips. ‘You want this.’

‘We were raised as brothers,’ tries Thor helplessly.

Loki cocks his head, face turning contemplative. ‘That never stopped you, did it? Always touching me. Always. How long have you wanted this, hm, big brother?’ He smirks, and Thor’s eyes are wide.

‘You knew,’ he says flatly.

Loki doesn’t reply but he brings his hands to his own breeches and unties them, bringing his cock out into the heated air, curved and flushed, a hand grasping the base. ‘Thor, please,’ moans Loki in a breath, stroking his cock once, twice, again, hips rolling as he fucks into his own fist, ‘Oh, to imagine your hand on me, your calloused fingers – uhn – all rough and tight – brother.’

Thor’s mouth is dry as he watches his brother’s dick appear and disappear, the head gleaming wet from precome that beads out and is spread along the length. ‘Loki,’ he tries, but his voice is faint, and his hands on Loki’s waist have turned clammy with sweat. He lets go, his hard cock pressing into Loki’s backside insistently now, and – almost shyly – presses the pad of his thumb against Loki’s weeping cockhead.

The reaction is instantaneous – Loki arches, gasping, and he grabs Thor’s fingers to wrap them around his prick, ‘please, Thor, I’ve waited so long – ’

Thor doesn’t understand, but he is too busy feeling the thickness and heat of Loki’s cock in his hand, jerking him off roughly, twisting his wrist and flicking his thumb over the head to smear the precome over the rest to ease his stroking into something more slick and fast.

Loki continues to speak, as if the daze he’s in has let go of all his formal predilections of keeping his thoughts close, ‘I’d watch you want me, brother, eyes on my fingers – hah – on my neck, did you think of – uh – my c-cock, Thor, did you – ’

Thor flips them – Loki pressed on his back against the bed, his hair a mess, his mouth gaping open as he moans, and Thor kisses him shut, just to keep him quiet, just to muffle the words that brings his dick into aching hardness.

Loki’s mouth is wet and warm and tastes a bit like spices from the seidr that he has coursing through his body. Thor nips at his bottom lip, feeling it swell and bites down just to taste the blood, just to make it thorough and real – we are brothers, but I don’t care. He traces the sharp ridges of Loki’s teeth and feels him moan and Loki’s own tongue sneak out to do the same. Loki tastes him with the same eagerness that Thor has, and it shoots more than arousal in his spine. He warms up to it – the notion that maybe, just maybe, Loki has wanted this too.

But, he remembers the glaze of seidr over the green of his brother’s eyes and knows that Loki is not in his right mind. Thor pulls away, slowing the stroking on his brother’s cock, watching him whine and buck to get back the rhythm.

‘You’re not yourself,’ says Thor softly, and Loki scowls.

‘If you won’t fuck me, I’ll do it myself.’ And, just to prove his point, Loki slides two of his own fingers into his mouth and slicks them up before reaching down, past Thor’s hand, to his entrance, working himself open.

Thor groans at the sight, and Loki is laughing. ‘I want to see your cock, brother, want to know if it’s as – oh – big as they say.’ Loki’s other hand is fumbling with the waist of Thor’s pants, and Thor undoes them, shimmies out quickly, and tosses it, before sliding the rest of Loki’s trousers off as well.

His cock is leaking, and he sees Loki eye the drool of precome before touching it gently and then grasping Thor’s cock firmly into his hand, green irises snapping up to watch his blonde brother. ‘I want this – ’ he squeezes once, ‘in my hole, do you understand?’

‘Loki,’ pants Thor, ‘you’re – ’ but Loki cuts him off swiftly. ‘In me.’

Thor obeys, pressing a kiss to his brother’s throat, his hand letting go of Loki’s cock and grasping his own, lining it up to the slick entrance. His other hand thumbs at Loki’s hardened nipple, watching him squirm, as he slowly works in the head of his cock past the ring of muscle.

It takes an achingly long time to slide into Loki, but Thor is distracted by the way Loki shivers and writhes on the sheets, his pale skin flushed, fingers curled tightly into the muscle of Thor’s shoulders, his eyes wide and blown, the green only a faint ring now around the pupils.

Finally, Thor is in, balls pressed hot against Loki’s behind, and he’s breathing shallowly, aroused beyond belief.

‘Loki,’ murmurs Thor, and Loki arches in turn. His face is open, his expression vulnerable – he seems almost anguished, but there is something else hidden in the curve of his mouth. Something like relief, or perhaps adoration, Thor cannot tell.

Thor,’ says Loki in a breath, sounding almost reverent, before his voice tightens, and he’s back to being severe – ‘c’mon, then, fuck me, brother.’

The first thrust is shallow, as is the second, and third, until Loki locks his ankles at the small of Thor’s back and shoves himself on his brother’s cock, moaning loudly and unabashedly.

He fucks into his brother harshly; one hand grasping the headboard and the other on Loki’s hip to lift him as he pounds into the sweet, tight heat. He is ruthless as he fucks into his brother – he has waited, so long, for a moment like this, and it is headier and better than he has ever dreamt of in his torturous wait.

Loki’s back is curved, and his hand jerks himself off in counterpoint to the deep, penetrating thrusts his brother shoves into him with, mouth running on, ‘fuck, brother – Thor – more, yes, don’t stop – don’t – ah – ’

Thor does not – it is the last thing on his mind. It feels exhilarating to finally have this and he will savour it for as long as he can, shoving on and on into Loki without rest. Seeing his brother’s hand move rapidly over his own cock, he groans, grinding up against Loki, pressed deep and tight, until Loki lets out a long whine, body stilling, before Thor’s hips begin to piston in and out of him once more.

They’re loud – or Loki is anyway, his mouth a running commentary of expletives like ‘yes, hard, fuck me hard with your cock, brother,’ – and the air seems to grow heavy and electric. Thor has never properly learned to control his power in a place with a gravitational pull as weak as Earth, which seems to react to each of Thor’s tempers.

The storm clouds amass outside the window and Loki notices it too, grinning, ‘oh – brother – a god – ’ he stutters out, seemingly incoherent, and rolls his hips eagerly against Thor, trying to get him deeper and faster.

Orgasm comes quickly enough – Thor fucks into Loki just as harsh as always, his fingers leaving bruises against the pale skin, his other hand splintering the headboard, as he grinds once more – deep and insistent against Loki’s prostate – until Loki comes with a shout, clamping down and milking Thor’s cock.

There is thunder, a flash of lightning, Loki’s mouth – ‘I’ve waited for you for so long’ as if these weren’t the words that should be coming out of Thor’s lips – and Thor comes, filling Loki up, hips trembling with aftershocks, until he empties out and drops with a thump onto the side of the bed, listening to the patter of rain against his window.

He slides a hand over Loki’s side, and Loki looks at him, before sighing and closing his eyes, and Thor wishes they had been open long enough to see whether Loki was still drugged or not. He feels almost sick then. What if he had taken Loki without consent? What if he’d been an unwilling participant in a seidr-controlled body?

Then: ‘stop thinking, Thor.’

‘Loki?’

Loki cracks his eyes open – the green of the iris clear and glimmering as always. ‘It’s fine.’

‘You were drugged,’ says Thor helplessly, but the other rolls his eyes.

‘On my own seidr, Thor, so I did have some control over myself.’ The is a silence where Loki reaches out, curling his fingers around Thor’s neck, his voice coming again, soft, ‘I only accepted this gesture on your part, remember?’

‘Yes.’

‘Do you know why – no, of course you wouldn’t.’ Loki pauses, licks his mouth. ‘It was the only gesture that I perceived as for a lover, and not a brother.’

Thor gapes. ‘If you knew how I – ’

‘You were the perfect image of brotherly charm, Thor, how was I to know,’ snaps Loki.

‘Then today, what was that, brother? A gamble?’

‘A loss of my restraint and inhibitions, much like having too much mead. A feeling I’m sure you’d be familiar with,’ drawls the other, fingers tracing patterns over Thor’s neck, ‘but your eagerness aroused my suspicions. In a way, I suppose I always knew. Perhaps it was too good to be truth in my eyes.’

‘I love you,’ blurts Thor, and Loki smiles, the edges tinted with bitterness.

‘Also too good to be the truth.’

Thor tries again, because that’s all he can do when it comes to his brother. ‘Don’t leave.’

Loki arches his eyebrows at the desperation in Thor’s voice. ‘I always do, brother. Do not take it to heart. Next time, I shall ply you with seidr and see what a wanton slut you are inside.’

The blonde man pauses. ‘Next time?’

Loki quirks a half-smile and murmurs, ‘sleep, brother,’ and Thor sees his brother’s mouth run over a rune or two before he feels a heaviness overcome his eyelids and body, and he is asleep.

-

Thor wakes to an empty room and warm sheets and the smell of coffee he finds in a cup on the bedside table, a piece of paper tucked underneath with Loki’s handwriting scrawled over it – I was feeling sentimental, it seems. Do know I hate you, brother. But, perhaps, not as much as I would like.

It’s the closest he will get to Loki’s feelings, Thor knows, so he tucks the note into his bedside table drawer and drinks the coffee with a smile.

-