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meditation in an emergency

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"You and your own will be blotted out," Malekith pronounces, and his voice is a metallic chorus of echoes. "You recall what became of mine, Odin, son of Bor; you wiped them out yourself, and were glad."

Loki casts about, looking between the two of them for something -- sudden rescue, further denouncement, anything. This will hurt less (as exile did, as did the inexpert probings of mere beasts) if he believes they do not care about him; if he could interpret mother Frigga's incensed horror as a mere show, and that she did not really care what became of him, he could hate her too. He could hate all of them, reckon them all together. (His breath comes quick and he grinds his teeth, striving to dislocate one of the many small bones in his hands if it will allow him to slip free of his bonds, but cannot do it. The Aether restrains him and keeps him upright, coursing over the surface of his skin like the evil cousin of the force fields which sealed his unhappy prison cell in Asgard; but it is not glittering threads of subtle magic, woven by mother herself, it is monstrous and raw and electrifying, every unnatural sensation made into one and twisted into ropes that bind.)

"You will release my son," Frigga says, having paled completely, "or by all Nine Realms--"

"Why make such a protest, for a child who was not even your own?"

His hand twists in Loki's hair and his protesting cry is cut short before it can escape his mouth. Malekith is playing with him, rolling a strand of his still-grimy hair between his fingers, murmuring something in quicksilver elf-tongue that is -- Loki knows, and a mad laugh nearly bursts out of him instead like a scream -- not very nice at at all. He pulls his hair away from the nape of his neck (his very bare, incredibly bare neck) and Loki's eyes are shut, he is waiting for the blade. Malekith presses his face to the naked expanse of skin there. He might even smell him. Loki isn't certain, but he feels the scarcely-veiled threat of his teeth and the poisonous touch of his tongue.

"Then," Malekith says, in words like chiming metal, and calls him a word Loki can only approximate via translation into cuckoo, parasite, interloper: "Odin will watch you be broken."

Frigga is gasping. He can hear that from here, above the occult hum of the containment field that separates them. He does not want to think of what Odin is doing, what must be written plainly on his face -- he doesn't care if it's as his father or his king or his jailer but the shame makes him ready to die. His quick tongue has abandoned him; all is lost.

The queen Allmother steels herself against weeping, and he will not think of the Allfather's face.

"Do it," Loki says hoarsely, "do it and be damned," and Malekith's body is pressing on him fit to suffocate, all stabbing points of metal, he says nothing, he says nothing at all -- "do it."

The muscles in Loki's thighs are spasming, making him kick at the ground even when he knows it's no use. His breeches are torn down, all their belts snapping and breaking open as easily as if they were never fastened, and he is thrown onto his front like an animal; it knocks the breath out of him and he arches up with a groan, the next breath filling his lungs with ash.


His legs are knocked apart with a kick that dislocates one of his knees. He hears the bone cracking before he feels the pain.

If he can turn himself over, he can spit in Malekith's face. If he can turn himself over he can cast out some illusion to cover himself, or to stagger his captors for as long as it takes for Frigga and Odin to act, even a split second might earn them the upper hand. He strains his neck struggling under incomprehensible weight as he is nearly mounted, while his heavy coat jingles and his tunic is yanked up. (How is this happening to him? How had he ever thought captivity alone unbearable?)

"You really believe I'm defenseless? You really believe I'd let myself be seized upon by the likes of you without a plan up my sleeve? I wouldn't do that if I were you--" He is bluffing and all of these words add up to nothing; even to himself his voice sounds high and crazed. Foiled illusions crackle at his fingertips; the green light is there but it fizzles impotently and is drowned out.

"No bravery today, child," Malekith says. His voice is completely dispassionate, nearly bored, as he undoes his own armor. His fingers track down Loki's bared back onto his buttocks, thumbing patiently as if his touch wasn't already enough to bruise.

Something yields with a sickening readiness and before he knows it his glamor is melting away like a snake tugs free of its skin, like a lady sheds her mantle. That which shines through underneath is his own miserable flesh; his skin prickles as it's revealed cobalt-blue and line-marked. He lies there unspeakably ugly. He thinks desperately of Frigga -- she can't see this, she's never seen him for what he really is, let alone like this -- and of Malekith, whether he knew all along of the source of his weakness or if he thought him a mere bastard, but from the hardness pressing into him he scarcely seems to mind. Perhaps he has a fondness for other monsters.

This way is as old as war. It could be worse, some part of him spits out, Malekith could be taking him like a woman. He almost certainly wouldn't live to see a belly gotten big with spiteful offspring; Malekith must not know about that little foible, or surely he would. Loki's brain devises further elaborations on the theme of poetic justice for slain kin while he's being fucked into like a thing.

His body screams against being used thus, the muscles and bones of his arms crying out at the unnatural position his body is twisted into, torso twisted and hands and arms wrenched up to the side by his tear-lined cheek while his hips are held in place as they are, flat to the ground. He is being fucked on top of his own coat. He's never felt his own fragility more; he struggles vainly and earns himself a sharper jostle or a harder thrust. Thus subdued, his limberness is his own enemy, and he can stare at his own accursed hands at his leisure. If there were anything he could withhold from this position, out of spite, it would not be possible for long; Malekith's grip is strong and the energy coursing just under the surface of him (just near enough that it crackles against Loki's skin, discharging like the subtlest lightning) is torture. He knows him more intimately than any lover (forcing his legs up, the pain in his knee that had nearly abated in the interest of focusing on the pain elsewhere surges back full-force and it is only by luck that Loki doesn't faint) and every second of his shame is seen.

Malekith releases him like a doll he's grown tired of and Loki scarcely has time to think before it begins again. Malekith may be their captain, but there are others in attendance; the violation is prolonged only by a little. Loki doesn't know if they act on orders or of their own free will.

One of them does not even enter him in order to violate him; (it must be a woman, taking her part, registers on him like the first drop of rain out of a clear sky, as gloved hands force apart his filthy thighs while another pair brace his shoulders. All their faces are the same. They all smell the same, burnt and wet.) The touch is enough, their presence and the monstrous weight lent them by numbers. Their unidentifiable masks are silent, seen only out of the corner of one scarcely-open eye. Every one of his stifled groans can be heard, until he can cry out no more and makes only noise.

He does not remember clearly where, exactly, or when his debasement ends, only that when he is thrown down again on the unworked stone beyond the compass of the containment field it registers as a very great relief.


He is propped up at a sickly angle against the steps of the dais from which they watched. His body is swept with trembling, and there is dampness on his face that he can't identify, insignificant in comparison to the dampness dripping down his legs. His lips part and press together again but no words will come with it.

He will not look at them. He will not look at her nor him. Perhaps now he will die. Frigga carries a hidden blade with her, always; the retrieving of it must be causing this delay because he is still not dead and his teeth are chattering in his head like rolling dice.

A set of strong arms enfolds him carefully-- the feel of the armor against his body makes him stiffen but he is not strong enough to pull free, only to shudder. His father is speaking words, soft ones and gentle; he is wrapped, then, in the fullness of the folds of Odin's cloak like when he was very small. He is losing consciousness now, truly. The dark beckons. He feels something brush against his face.

"Father," he says threadily, "have I done well?"

His father's hands worry at his brow; salt-tears stain Odin's beard. "My son. My son."


A stir of skirts, a breath of wind kicked up by her passing. "Malekith, animal." No trembling now. This is what he hears as awareness leaves him, sight first (only a flash of the gilt of her robe) and hearing last. Frigga's voice sounds out like a clarion, like the edge of a sword. "There will be no quarter. You will burn on a pyre of your kinsmen's corpses. I'll do it myself. You will burn."