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To Love is to Lose

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Cheering could be heard for miles down the busy New York street as Loki dropped down between Thor and an innocent bystander. His staff clashed against the might of Mjolnir. His brother's eyes, the eyes that used to show love even as their only interaction involved blood and death, were filled with a cold fury.

Loki repressed a shiver that tried to overtake his body. The cold never bothered him, the thought of the shiver left his mind though as the fight with his bro-his nemesis started.

Shoving Thor back with his staff, Loki straightened to his full height. “What do you think you could possibly accomplish today, other than a new imprint on your face that matches my boot?” Loki smirked as he started to circle.

“If I shall get marked by your boot today it will be only as you fall down under my hammer,” Thor grinned as he began swinging Mjolnir.

“Such confidence Thor, you know that fails to serve you well in the end,” Loki said. Creating doubles of himself, he surrounded Thor. The real him appearing behind Thor, out of sight.

“Not today!” Thor roared as he swung around, ignoring all the doubles in favor of the real Loki behind him. Mjolnir flung out of Thor's hand and rammed into Loki's chest. He soared through the air as Thor's strength behind the hammer forced him back.

Loki's face was thunderous as he hobbled up from the ground. Using his staff he sent a pulse of energy straight at Thor, sending him back in the same manner as him. He quirked a grin at the crashing sound that Thor's body made as it impacted with a nearby car, completely totaling it.

Their eyes locked as Thor dusted himself off. They launched at each other, without a car for surroundings. A singular purpose of defeating the other. A shockwave pushed out from them as they met head on.

This was a new world. A world he had created. He would not lose. It was not possible. Not with how he had rewritten the very fabric of the universe. His grin stretched manically as he fought Thor. Loki had his rightful place as a hero to the masses while Thor was seen as the wretch Loki knew him to be.

With a final blow with his staff to Thor's head, the blonde fell hard to the ground. Blood seeped from Thor's head as he blinked back trying to get the breath back in him.

Slowly, Loki approached Thor's prone body. The gravel crunched beneath his boots as he made his steadied approach. The crowds that had been witness to Thor's defeat clapped and cheered for Loki. FOR Loki. He spared a glance for the masses around him. He lifted his staff high in the air, the crowd roared in response.

He threw his head back in laughter as he let the Midgardian's praise rush through him. Twirling his staff, Loki brought it down to level with Thor's throat. “Any last words, brother?” Loki spat. He finally had his chance to kill Thor.

Thor looked at Loki with determined eyes, “You're bluffing.”

“Am I?” Loki asked before he hit Thor again with a pulse of magic, flattening Thor against the broken ground at his back.

There was a deafening silence around Loki, noticeable as just before the crowds had been chanting his name. With his staff still trained on Thor, Loki looked up towards the crowds. There was fear on their faces. Fear and betrayal. Some where covering nearby child's eyes. Others had tears in their eyes.

Loki took a step back as if struck. He felt a coldness seep through his skin as he clenched his hands. Ice formed where his hands met his staff. Blue skin was slowly revealed from the point of contact.

Looking down suddenly, Loki dropped his staff like it was the problem. His eyes did not leave his blue hands as he spoke quietly, “Even when I'm the hero, you're still better than me.”

He teleported away without acknowledging Thor. He went to where him as a hero in this new world took residence. The former Stark tower, now Hammer tower if the name in large letters was anything to go by, was made with a worse sense of gaudiness that Loki should not have been surprised that the lettering for “Hammer” took up most of the building.

It did not take long to find his place in the tower. A floor to himself filled with items of his magic and a few trinkets from home. Loki teleported to his floor.

Shucking off his helmet and using magic to divest himself of his armor, Loki tried to take calming breathes. His blue skin was now completely revealed. The reflection against the glass window showed Loki his true face. He exerted his magic once more to reinstate his glamour.

Closing his eyes, Loki felt rage well up within him. The heroes are supposed to win in the world, yet only being in this new world for but an hour and Loki had already lost.

A loud bang brought Loki out of his thoughts. He quietly went to investigate. Another sound echoed through the otherwise quiet floor. Using his magic, Loki blasted the door leading to the room that the sound originated from open.

Captain America was on the floor, wearing nothing but the sheet that seemed to have wrapped around only his lower body.

Loki opened his mouth to say something, to say anything, but he was at a complete loss looking at Captain America naked in his bedroom.

“Loki,” Steve breathed out as if he was relieved and happy to see Loki standing there before him. “A little help?” He smirked as he looked pointedly at the tangled mess at his feet.

It took a moment for Loki to come back to himself enough to jump to action. With a snap of his fingers, the Captain was back on the bed but this time the sheet tied his arms to the bed posts.

“Is this my reward for not going out and causing havoc? You might be able to get more villains to reform if these are the methods you use,” Steve teased.

“What are you doing here?” Loki snarled as his staff materialized in his hand and he held it up to the Captain's neck.

A frown marred Steve's face as he looked between Loki and his staff. “Loki? Is everything alright?” He asked tentatively. Steve flexed against the sheets keeping him bound.

With a blink of his eye the soft sheets holding the Captain became steel chains. “Answer me,” Loki said.

Worry crossed Steve's face as he tried sitting up to get closer to Loki, “Did you hit your head in a fight? Did Thor hurt you? You know I can put him on henchmen duty for a month if he hurt you in a permanent way.” Concern laced Steve's words as his gaze dragged down Loki's body.

Loki suddenly dropped his staff from the attacking position as he let loose manic laughter. His hand came to hold his stomach as he continued. Bending over from the exertion. “We-” he gasped out, “are together?”

Steve looked angry at Loki's outburst, “Only when I can get out of SHIELD's sight.”

Stepping up to the bed, Loki sat down by Steve's hip. He let his eyes drift down Steve's body in a way he had not let himself when he perceived the Captain as a threat.

His laughter died down. They sat in silence. Steve not even fidgeting in his bared position.

“I must apologize but my memory has seem to leave me for the moment. What exactly are we to each other?” Loki asked. He brought his hand up to graze Steve's chest with a fleeting touch.

Steve shivered involuntarily at the touch before his eyes flashed with a challenge, “Why don't you come over here and find out?”

“Maybe this world does have it's merits,” Loki muttered under his breath before he came into Steve's space.