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In a heartbeat

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In a heartbeat

 In a heartbeat COVER

Það er aldrei of seint fyrir ást.
It's never too late for love.

 

Chapter 1

“We are going to be late!” You ranted, stomping your foot when Susan started to flirt with the questionably young taxi driver that had brought you here. New York City was crazy, especially if you were in a hurry. Note to self—leave at least two hours earlier next time. This job interview would determine what direction your hopefully successful future would take, so you were definitely not having your friends ruin this one opportunity for you… even if you had to act all bitchy and bossy.

“Please, (Y/N), calm your tits, we’re gonna be on time. We still have…” —Karen looked at her fancy watch— “…twenty minutes.”

“So I can call you?”

“Anytime,” Susan bat her long eyelashes at the taxi driver before waving him goodbye like a spoiled princess, making you roll your eyes in plain annoyance.

“Why did I even bother bringing you two?” You asked, rather yourself than your friends when they giggled. They decided to answer you anyway.

“Because you love us? The building is only three blocks away, don’t worry.” Susan appeased. Her long black hair was falling over her shoulders like a wave of shimmering pitch when she loosened her tight ponytail. A sigh escaped her lips.

“Let’s go then.” You mumbled, seeking to distract yourself with your surroundings as you wandered along the busy pavement. This city was insane. Luxurious and important, it screamed career and success like a euphoric fury. How you would adapt to living here if you actually got that job today, you were unsure of. As for now, you were staying with Susan and her younger sister Karen, who had generously offered you a place to crash.

You were grateful, really—but sometimes, the siblings were a pain in the arse. Susan was right though. You still loved them and you three had experienced amazing things together already. You were best friends for life.

“Excuse me? Can you help me?” No. You could not. Being a tourist yourself, you would be of no help to anyone and besides, you were way too focused on your upcoming job interview. Two more blocks and your future would, if you got lucky, change for the better forever.

You flinched when Karen let out a scream, turning around in an instant to kick whoever had scared or attacked her right in the balls. The self-defence class, which you attended thrice a week, had been training you for situations like that. It made you feel safe when you were walking on the streets on your own, especially when it was dark out already. The slow progress you made with your personal trainer was paying off and making you vigilant, when you found her jumping up and down like a gummy ball and fangirling as if to react to spotting One Direction on the street, however, you frowned.

“OMG!” Susan spelled out, her jaw dropping. Her eyes were fixed on the long-haired blonde, who had addressed you. A tall and broad man dressed in battered clothes that reminded you of a homeless person. It was his face that made you realise your friends’ excitement though.

“You are Thor! OMG! You are Thor! You are the Thor! I love you! May we take a selfie with you? Please?”

The Thunderer smiled cordially and despite his confusion (welcome to the club, mate), he nodded. You didn’t care about the Norse God at all. Crushing on superheroes was Susan’s thing. You were fine dating normal men.

“Of course,” You doubted Thor knew what a selfie was in the first place but it was the least of your problems right now. Standing a few steps away, you scratched the back of your hand like you always did when you were nervous.

“Guys, we’re going to be late, for Fuck’s sake, please hurry!”

There was another person waiting. Clothed in a plain black suit that looked like it had been tailored for him, he dug his hands into the pockets of his pants. He appeared to be as irritated as you were, however, when you looked up to study his face, your heart skipped a beat.

This… was Loki. This was the very man who had tried to take over the world and caused mayhem all over New York City a couple of years ago. The man who had killed hundreds of innocent people and fought against the Avengers! His raven hair framed his flawless features, his stinging blue eyes boring right into yours. It seemed like with a single glance, he learned all of your darkest secrets and deepest desires.

You blinked, frantically, and looked away quickly when you noticed you were staring each other down, though you could still feel his scrutinising gaze on you when you brought your attention back to your friends who were now snapping crazy pictures with the God of Thunder.

You would never make it in time if they kept dawdling. Susan and Karen were both busy ignoring Loki completely as they talked to Thor, although Karen shot him one disgusted peek when she spotted him standing next to him.

“How can we help you, Thor?” Susan smiled and for just a brief moment you feared she would faint from pure delight.

Ten minutes.

“I am looking for a man.”

“Ha, I could swear most men are looking for a woman.” You muttered to yourself, scratching the back of your hand even fiercer.

“(Y/N)!” Susan admonished embarrassed. A careless shrug was all she received in return.

“Well, can you be a little more specific?” You continued. “Half of the population of New York is male.”

“(Y/N)!” Susan repeated. You shrugged once more all the while sudden curiosity hit you. What was he doing here in New York City and much more importantly, why had he brought Loki? For all you knew from watching the news, the God of Mischief had been called back to Asgard where he would have had to face justice and a proper punishment for his actions. Your curiosity was directed at him, fascination washing through your veins like a gushing wave of hot water. He just stood there, watching you, with a barely visible smirk playing on his thin lips.

Thor took a deep breath. You could tell he was irritated by your scornful remarks, clenching his fist repeatedly to assumingly keep calm, the other hand fumbling around with the ridiculous umbrella he was carrying despite the sunshine. Something was bothering him when he scowled, this much was obvious. But as were you—you had approximately five minutes left to show up for your job interview. Thor was a self-proclaimed superhero. Surely, he could take care of his problems himself and on top of it, deal with a few cocky insults.

“We are looking for my father,” he tried again, speaking slowly as if he was scolding an immature and young child who had stolen biscuits from the kitchen before supper. “Odin. He disappeared.” Following his dark words, he glared at his brother angrily from the corner of his eye. So he had something to do with it. You were not surprised he was, you had read the articles in the newspapers where they had described him as a mischievous, evil and witty cockroach from outer space.

“What does he look like?” Susan tossed in eagerly, playing with a strand of her black hair.

“He has… grey hair, a beard… he is one-eyed and wearing an eye patch and—“

“Thor…” It was the first time you heard him speak. Instantly, you turned your head to face Loki. His smooth voice was seducing, alluring and enchanting and nothing like what you imagined what a man who tried to conquer and subjugate the planet would sound like. You wished he would say more. You wanted to see how well-chosen and witty words left those thin lips.

No wonder he had succeeded in making a crowd kneel before him in fear… or had it been awe in the end? Loki wasn’t what SHIELD had let the world know he was. He didn’t seem like the monster they had described him as at all… was this the fatal mistake they had made back then?

Better stay away from him, you thought to yourself, withdrawing your gaze to stare longingly at the busy street in front of you. You were only a few blocks away now. Maybe you should just leave and let your friends deal with the strange Asgardian brothers.

Sighing, you moved to step away when you realised the reason for Loki’s unnerving comment. The mist crept up right behind you. Black, green and silver, it spread on the busy pavement, scaring passengers away and alarming a few pigeons. Wind was blowing where there appeared a black and gaping portal, promising dread, fear and death. Your blood ran cold. What was this sorcery?

Susan and Karen were frozen in place. Not daring to move, their eyes widened. They barely noticed Thor striding forward to shield them from the unidentified threat in the heart of New York City. Loki stood idly by, his lips slightly parted. Concern was present on his face, along with the undeniable expression of thinking hard. A plan was forming in his mind already.

Out of the green fog stepped a woman. Long and black hair framed her pale face, her stinging blue eyes even more intense with the black eye shadow she was wearing. In fact, she was abusing it but still, it suited her eerie appearance.

Smiling cruelly, she moved towards you.

“Who are you? Identify yourself!” Thor demanded, his right fist bringing up the umbrella. A weird sound erupted from it when he did and you understood with a start it was his famous hammer Mjölnir. This attire had merely been a disguise, hence Loki’s black suit.

“Me?” The woman replied, shrugging. “I am Hela. I am the Goddess of Death. And I am your queen.” She shrugged once more, her wicked grin widening. “Kneel.”

“I beg your pardon?” Loki narrowed his eyes, leaning forward ever so slightly.

She was another power-hungry sociopath then. Narcissistic and self-driven, with an inexplicable desire to rule a people. You needed to get away. Now.

“I don’t think so.”

What happened next was too fast for your mind to comprehend. Thor threw his hammer at Hela, a swift movement of his umbrella which had turned back to its original form within the blinking of an eye—and a lightning bolt swallowing him whole for the fraction of a second but instead of it colliding with her body, all covered in black leather, she… she caught it.

Hela sighed—she sounded almost disappointed. “Very well,”

An explosion erupted, knocking you to the ground. Simultaneously, you were pushed aside by someone and something hit your head—whether it was a body part or a piece of debris you did not know, for the only thing you could hear was the staggered screams of passengers and the high-pitched ringing in your ears. There was a sticky liquid running down your forehead and staining your cheeks. It was burning in your right eye, you could hardly see anything. Blood? Were you bleeding?

“(Y/N)…” It was Susan who croaked your name. She was lying on the ground, it was her foot that had connected with your head when you fell and when you looked up to meet her terrified gaze, you saw fear and anguish glistening in them.

A piece of metal was buried deep inside her chest, reddening her revealing outfit. There wasn’t much you knew about anatomy but with the blade being plunged into her body this close to her heart, you knew she would not survive even if an ambulance brought her to the hospital this instant.

Hela had killed her. Her absurd wrath had snuffed an innocent, one of your best friends.

“Susan… Susan, open your eyes, look at me! We’re gonna get you help!” You cried, biting back your tears.

Anger, fear and panic flooded your veins, paralysing every last limb of yours. Frozen and dumbfounded, you lay there, struggling to get up and breathing heavily all the while the goddess of death kept attacking Thor and Loki.

Thor was powerless without his hammer. He was surprised and confused and even Loki seemed startled. He flipped his daggers gracefully before flinging them at Hela so smoothly you could barely see it but even he would, on the long term, be defenceless against the ruthless goddess.

You attempted to get up and run, save yourself and Karen for as long as it was still possible. Was it? You doubted it. Momentarily, your important job interview was forgotten. If you died today… would the last thing you felt be worry about showing up on time?

It was then you heard an ear-piercing hiss. Out of thin air, orange sparks extended on the pavement. They created a circle through which suddenly, you spotted the head of a man. Dark hair and a neatly trimmed beard framed his face, a red cloak complementing the colour of it.

“Get in there! Quick!” He spoke, urging you on to… step through the portal? You could barely believe such a thing existed when Thor frowned and jumped inside without hesitation, quickly followed by Loki but then again… Hela had stepped out of a cloud made of green and black fog.

“Karen! Karen!” You bestowed frantically. She had realised now that Susan was dead too. She was kneeling next to her on the ground, her watering eyes empty and lost. She was bleeding too but at least, so you figured, she would be able to heal.

“Karen!”

“We don’t have time! Leave her, you can’t help her!” The head of the strange man shouted severely as it appeared once more. A foreign hand wrapped around your upper arm, pulling you inside the orange portal.

With a start, the streets of New York City, Karen’s kneeling form and Susan’s dead body were gone.

Chapter Text

Several seconds passed until the play of warm colours ceased. You were standing in what resembled the stairwell of an ancient mansion, with valuable sculptures in the corners and artistic paintings on the walls. In front of you there was the man who had saved your life. His red cloak seemed to be moving and floating on its own when he stepped forward to properly introduce himself. Thor was even faster to speak.

“So Earth has wizards now, huh?”

“Something like that. My name is Doctor Stephen Strange.”

Frowning, you looked around you. Stephen Strange. You had heard of his name before. He used to be a famous neurosurgeon before… there had been this atrocious accident.

You let out a breath you didn’t realise you were holding, your limbs still shaking. The shock of what had happened sat deep—clinging to your heart like claws, stabbing you from the inside out.

“W-whatever just happened? Who was that? What does she want?” Why did she kill my best friend, you added silently, swallowing thickly to suppress a sob. Your heart was still pounding like a steam hammer—it almost hurt.

Strange nodded. “Yes, what does she want, Thor? You seemed familiar.”

“We are not. I know as much about her as you do but we need to stop her now. My hammer…”

“A shame,” the wizard said, pouting in approval before turning to you. “I’m sorry about your friend.” Fighting back your tears once more, you nodded.

“Look, sorcerer, we need to find my father.” Thor continued sternly. “He’ll know what to do, he is the Allfather, the protector of the nine realms.”

“What brought him this title, I wonder?” Strange remarked sarcastically. “I know who your father is, we met shortly before he disappeared.”

“Disappeared?”

“Yes,” Strange said. “He chose to remain in exile when your brother Loki…” —he put a suspicious emphasis on his name— “…banished him to Earth.”

“But why would he do that?”

Loki. Where was he? Your thoughts drifted away from the weirdly calm conversation Strange and Thor were having. You didn’t want to be here—you didn’t belong here. You had just missed your job interview and then, even worse, lost one of your best friends to a powerful black-haired witch. This wasn’t right. None of this was.

“You should probably stay the night.” Strange suggested when you turned back to them again reluctantly. “It will take me some time to locate your father and in this house, you will be safe from Hela. I will personally bring you to your rooms. Don’t enter any of the others without me, they’re—uh—out of order.”

“Stay the night?” You chirped, terrified. “What about me? I can’t stay the night, I need to go back this instant! I have… had a job interview! I demand to leave immediately!” Although you tried to sound intimidating, your words were weak and exhausted.

The past hour had taken its toll on you and with the realisation of your best friend being gone sinking in more with every minute that passed, it was getting harder to even stand upright without throwing up or fainting like a pathetic little school girl.

“You can’t leave… what’s your name?”

“(Y/N),” you choked out.

“(Y/N),” Strange repeated gently. “You can’t leave. I’m sorry. Hela knows who you are and what you look like, she saw you with Thor and Loki.”

“He’s right,” Thor added with a deep voice. “For all I know she will try and kill you once she gets the chance.”

Of course, he had a point there. Thanks to Karen and Susan, Hela might be thinking you were in on the game. The danger you were in was tangible. Perhaps you should stay the night. Only tonight and then tomorrow, you would make your leave, making sure to find Karen and mourn her sister together. Organising a beautiful funeral to honour her would be the least you could do after this terrible incident—it was, naturally, even more important than your spoiled chance to become a famous journalist one day.

“I will need my brother back.” Thor stated when you said nothing, clearing his throat audibly.

“Oh yeah, right,” With a flick of his fingers, there were eerie orange sparkles spreading on his fingertips again and then, having you flinch and jump aside, the wizard opened a portal on the ceiling through which a yelling Loki fell straight to the hard ground.

“I have been falling… for thirty minutes!” He complained crossly. Panting, he got up on his feet. The situation would have been funny, caused you to giggle even if you hadn’t just escaped death by only a heartbeat.

“Handle me…” He started, eyes narrowing as he fixated Strange. His voice was dangerously low, breathless even when out of thin air, he conjured two razor-sharp daggers. “Who are you? You think you are some kind of sorcerer. Don’t think for one minute you second-rate—“

Loki started at Strange before he had even finished his threat. Maybe it was the adrenaline that was still cursing through your veins and stopping you from collapsing; most of all, however, it made you brave.

“No! No, stop it!” You screamed, blocking his way. Your palms connected with his chest and despite of the nice feeling fabric of his black suit, it felt like trying to fight off a solid rock. The God of Mischief hesitated. Looking down at you in a confused manner, his blue eyes met yours. Whatever he saw in them—fear, exhaustion, desperation—it made him halt.

“No more fighting, I’m fed up with it! I just… I just want to go home!” Tears. Hot, salty and stinging, they worsened your sight. You quickly buried your face in your hands to hide your crying to keep at least some dignity. You should have all right to cry though. You were human, you were no supernatural witch…

“I don’t want anything to do with all of that spooky magic stuff! Life is exhausting enough! I just lost my best friend to a psychotic alien bitch for absolutely no reason!” You shouted out of breath, your words barely comprehensible in between frantic sobs.

“Okay, okay, (Y/N), you need to calm down, you’re having a panic attack.”

Strange was probably right with the amount of oxygen entering your windpipe. Trembling, you let him take a hold of your wrist—it wasn’t like you could have reacted in the first place—in the next moment, your environment once more changed within the twinkling of an eye.

In midst of an old-fashioned room with what looked like ancient furniture, the wizard switched on the lights and led you over to a surprisingly soft and comfortable bed.

“I know this is too much for you right now. It’s no less than what I felt when I first learned about magic and realms and… give yourself some time. Is there anyone you want me to contact for you? Your friend, maybe? She will have alerted the police by now.”

You decided to like the bearded man. His voice was relaxing and comforting and the way he kneeled down to look you in the eye all the while covering one of your hands with his, you felt safe.

It was only then you realised you had lost your bag during the explosion. Your phone, your wallet, your passport, even your car keys… everything was gone. If you did leave tomorrow, without your documents and any money, you wouldn’t even be able to leave the state.

“I… I don’t know Karen’s number by heart.”

“I will find a way to let her know you’re alive. Until then, you should rest. Are you hungry? There’s a bathroom opposite the room, it’s equipped with a first aid box so you can take care of the cut on your forehead. I will have some tea brought up, it will help you sleep.” As soon as he finished his proposal, a tray carrying a silver tea pot and a pretty porcelain mug appeared on your nightstand. It was steaming with a dark liquid, tempting you to taste it.

“Thank you.” You mumbled. For the tea or his comforting words, you did not know.

 

It must have been past midnight by now. The tea hadn’t helped. For hours on end, you had been thrashing around in bed, turning from side to side restlessly, for every time you closed your eyes to sleep, you saw Susan lying on the ground before you. She was reaching out, pleading you to save her instead of running away and stepping through that portal.

The smell of the fresh blood drowning her clothes was so vivid you gagged when your eyes flew open once again. Sweat was running down your back, your knees had turned to jelly and your heart… it seemed to be skipping so many beats you wondered how you were still alive.

You knew you wouldn’t be getting any rest tonight but at least, your tears had dried. You had no energy left to cry and relieve yourself from the grief rioting inside you. Maybe a short walk would take your mind off things and distract you from the gruesome picture that just wouldn’t go away.

Strange had told you not to explore the other rooms on your own and after what you had experienced today, you were fine with listening to his advice. Out of order probably meant hazard of any kind of magical origin. So you simply wandered through the empty hallways barefoot, inspecting the art in the house as you desperately tried not to think about Susan and the fact you would never see her again.

After a while, you came by another closed door, through this one, however, candle light shone to the wooden ground, illuminating a few feet in front of you. Either Doctor Strange, Thor or Loki would be inside the room, clearly not sleeping either, you assumed.

So you entered, making sure to knock quietly before opening the door to peek inside. It was the God of Mischief you spotted lying on the bed, reading a book whose title you couldn’t quite make out from the distance. He had replaced his clothes as well. Instead of the black suit, he was now wearing foreign garments made of green fabric which looked way more comfortable for reading in bed than his previous outfit.

He instantly noticed your presence before you even let the door fall shut behind you. Alarmed, he looked up to meet your tired gaze, his blue eyes sending pleasant shivers up and down your spine. There was something about his eyes… something intriguing.

“I can’t sleep,” you explained before he could open his mouth to dismiss you rudely. There wasn’t much you expected from him, after all. After what you had heard of he had done, you doubted he would show any sympathy for a human girl.

Loki tilted his head. He frowned, his lips parting ever so slightly. “Strange said the door was locked.” He stated wondrously.

Your eyes widened. “No, it was open, I mean, I just…” Grabbing the door knob in an irritated manner, you attempted to open it once more. It didn’t move. Not a smidge.

Oh no.

“It was open.” You corrected, turning around in an apologising manner all the while Loki rolled his eyes. Annoyance, so you figured, was safer than anger. Carefully, you approached his bed. “Why did he lock you in here?” You asked before you gave it a second thought. The answer was clear. Loki was a war criminal—unguarded… what would he do? You had just trapped yourself in this room with a very, very dangerous man. Of course your day was getting even better.

“Strange does not trust me. His sorcery is more advanced than I thought—sloppy but quite affective. I am yet to figure out how to break the spell, though I believe it is the house that blocks most of my magic.” He said, setting his book aside. Now, you had his full attention but whether that was a good or a bad thing, you could not tell.

“You can’t sleep?” He asked then, raising his eyebrows a little. For just a brief moment, you believed there was actual interest flaming up in his eyes, it was, however, quickly replaced by the most inconspicuous hint of mockery. It stung even though you tried not to let it get to you.

“Quite frankly, I will not be sleeping either now that you have so brilliantly locked us in here.”

“You could have told me the door was locked before I closed it, you vengeful idiot!” Dubiously, you usually ran out of cruel insults when you were angry and right now, Loki was provoking you. You were grieving, you were in pain and he… he was distracting you.

Nervously, you scratched the back of your hand, with the God of Mischief tilting his head once more upon seeing your skin turning all red. If you continued like this, you would be bleeding by tomorrow and yet, it felt good to do at least something with your hands.

Loki was staring at you in an almost scrutinising manner. It was like his intimidating glance went right through you.

What you didn’t understand was how you hadn’t just left after seeing Loki in this room. You could have bolted and returned to your own, searching for Strange or Thor instead but for some incomprehensible reason, you had stayed and entered. Again, you were reminded of how there was something about the God of Mischief that intrigued you. If only you knew what it was.

“Can I please just… lie down? I really am exhausted.” There was no point in standing at the edge of his bed any longer anyway. Given you would be locked in here for the rest of the night, you might as well make the best out of the situation. Perhaps now, you would even fall asleep.

Loki was dangerous and unpredictable, this much you were very well aware of, however, with him by your side… you felt oddly protected.

Watching him nod mutely and biting back another scornful remark to express his plain annoyance, you slid under the warm bed sheets all the while remembering how he had attempted to lunge at Strange today. What had induced him to listen to you? Was it compassion? Pity?

“Good night, Loki.” You whispered, sighing quietly before turning to face the wall. When he replied nothing in return, you simply forced your eyes shut. Despite the dim light in the room, it took you in fact only a couple of minutes to fall into a relatively peaceful slumber.

Chapter Text

When you woke up the next morning, the space to your right was empty, the bed unmade. Loki was gone. Bright sunlight shone into the room, illuminating the elegant furniture in the room. It all came crashing down on you then, like heavy rocks burying you underneath their weight.

Hela. Susan. Karen. Your job interview. Stephen Strange, Thor, Loki… uncountable thoughts were tumbling around in your head, making your brain all fuzzy and stealing away your balance when you first threw back your covers and stood.

Expecting the worst, you tried for the door and let out a relieved sigh when it opened, tiptoeing barefoot through the hallways. There was no way you would be finding your way back to your own room. You decided to get your shoes later.

Following the voices coming from downstairs, you soon found a large kitchen area. You blushed upon realising you had slept the longest.

“Good morning, (Y/N). How have you slept?” Strange asked cordially, gesturing for you to take a seat at the vast kitchen table. Loki was there too. He was dressed in his black suit yet again, his expression severe and unimpressed. Briefly, your eyes locked with his and for the first time since you first met, he looked away first.

Strange’s question confused you as you sat down at the opposite end of the table to bring about as much distance between the God of Mischief and you as possible. So he had not told them about your nightly visit and your most unfortunate mishap that had forced you to spend the night together.

“I… g-good. Surprisingly good,” you murmured honestly, watching how a plate full of scrambled eggs, toast and tomatoes appeared before you while at the same time, frantically avoiding Loki’s intent gaze.

“Karen knows you’re alright by the way. She’s with her parents in New Jersey right now and the police is aware you are staying with me, so you won’t be in any trouble once you leave.”

Once you leave. You still harboured the wish to do exactly that today, right after breakfast. Instead of complaining, however, you chose to invest your energy for a hopefully successful escape. You nodded gratefully.

“So, Thor, you say once you find your father, all parties involved will promptly return to Asgard?”

“Promptly,” the God of Thunder reinforced, smiling at the wizard.

“Great. Then I will help you. He is in Norway.”

“Norway? Why would he go to Norway?” You tossed in, looking at your plate rather disgusted. In spite of your stomach complaining, you had no appetite whatsoever. You didn’t even want to touch that cup of coffee Strange had set on the table for you.

“Thor can ask him that himself. I will need a strand of your hair, then I can create a portal that will lead you two right to him. Take this with you.” Despite his incredulousness, he handed Loki a strangely shaped ring.

“And then what happens to me in the meantime?” Crossing your arms in a defiant manner, you leaned back, trying to hide your shaking fingers.

“You stay here with me, (Y/N). As long as Hela is out there, your life is in danger. You are free to go as soon as she’s gone.”

Disappointment spread in your body. So he was intending to keep you here for an even longer period of time than just a couple of days. Strange was a likeable man, his company would be bearable to say the least but without Thor and Loki around, it would be, in fact, strange.

The two of them were the reason you had gotten into this horrible shemozzle in the first place. And Loki would be gone. Why on Earth would you bother if Loki would be gone?

“I object.” You muttered quietly, taking a deep breath to remain calm. What made it even worse was that you could practically feel Loki’s hypnotising blue eyes on you. It urged you to scratch the back of your hand.

Strange shot you a compassionate look before turning back to Thor to discuss details. If anything happened, so they concluded, Loki could open a portal with the ring Strange had given him so they could bring Odin back safely and flee and then, within mere moments, they were gone, having stepped through an orange portal leading to an open landscape in the heart of Norway.

“How’s your forehead?”

A weak pounding reminded you of the healing cut on your head. You had already forgotten about it.

“Fine, I suppose.”

“Good. Let me know if you need someone to take a closer look at it.”

He sighed when you said nothing, didn’t even look him in the eye.

“I’m sorry this happened to you, (Y/N) but you really should eat something.” Strange proposed when you gave your food another disgusted glance.

“I’m not hungry.”

“At least drink some water then.”

Gnashing your teeth, you started to scratch the back of your hand. Drink some water. As if drinking some water would help you deal with all of this. As if drinking some water would stop this madness.

“I just want to go home,” you whispered barely audible, adding a sigh. There was an unpleasant headache creeping up your skull, making you massage your temples. “I never wanted to be part of any of this.”

“I know. I trust Thor to take care of Hela. I’m sure you can leave soon. There is nothing personal about—“

“Susan is dead because of Hela.” You interrupted. “Of course, it is personal, Stephen. And I hope Thor and Loki will kick her bloody arse and send her back to wherever the hell she came from.”

Strange nodded. “Helheim. She came straight from Helheim, that’s all I know.”

Helheim. What was that? Hell? Was Hela Satan? His wife or daughter? For all you knew, she could be. You wanted her suffering and you wanted her dead, even if you had to be the one to bring about her demise.

You almost gasped at your wrathful thoughts and you realised only then that your grief had been replaced by a burning, gloating anger boiling up deep in your stomach. It felt good to be angry, way better than to be sad and terrified, though with your mere self-defence skills, you had but your spiteful words.

You spend the next hour forcing the eggs down your throat. Much to your surprise, they tasted abnormally delicious and with every bite you took, your appetite came back. Soon, you had emptied the whole plate, earning you an approved nod by Strange. Only when you watched in awe how the cutlery and the dishes disappeared from the table and had him summon your shoes for you, he suddenly frowned.

“What? What is it?”

“Something’s not right…”

“What do you mean?”

“They’re in trouble. Hela must have found them, I can feel Loki trying to use the ring.” Fear flooded your body, your blood running ice cold. You had seen her fight before but now, Stephen Strange was here with you.

If she harmed them, then… where was that biting sorrow coming from? You should be scared for your own life and mourning your best friend but instead, you dreaded what could happen to Thor and most of all Loki—and that after how distastefully he had treated you yesterday night!

“I’m gonna help them. You stay here exactly where you are, so I can—“

The orange portal opened right before him, the impact knocking him into the kitchen counter while at the same time, you jumped up from your seat so forcefully the wooden chair crashed to the ground audibly.

Hela had found them. Her crude smile was horrifying when she stepped through the portal and studied her new surroundings interestedly. The ring Loki had used had slipped under the kitchen table, the man who had used it himself was stumbling to his feet as graceful as he could muster, quickly followed by Thor who, clenching his fists, turned around angrily to fight the intruder.

“Bring us back!” Loki shouted up to the ceiling. He sounded frightened, triggering your own fear. If the God of Mischief was afraid… Bring us back? Where to?

“No!” Thor roared.

Bright light came smashing through the ceiling, ripping apart several floors in the process. It formed a circle right around the area Thor, Loki, Hela and you were standing before a strong invisible force pulled you off the ground and sucked you up into the sky.

Ice cold air flushed past you, the colours of the rainbow blinding you as you flew, higher and higher. It felt like all air was being pressed out of your body, making you nauseous and dizzy. Panicking, you looked around you, spotting Loki a few feet underneath your own form.

“Loki!” You yelled, barely able to properly open your mouth to shout. Perhaps he was a war criminal but whatever was happening in this very moment, you were not supposed to be here, that you were sure of—he had to help you, somehow, anyhow!

Growling mutely, Loki turned his head around to face you, endeavour glistening in his blue eyes. He seemed to stomp his foot then—and within a matter of seconds, he was next to you, allowing you to wrap your arms around his middle. Cool leather pressed against your cheek, filling your nostrils with a sharp but alluring scent as you squeezed your eyes shut tightly, hoping this terrible ride would end soon.

It did even sooner than you anticipated. Reluctantly, you opened your eyes again in the hopes of finding Thor in the bright chaos of colours but not matter how hard you tried, you were unable to lift your head. Instead, you looked down, sensing how Loki’s muscles clenched when he flung a dagger down at a very enraged Goddess of Death. She dodged it easily and then threw one of her own swords at the God of Mischief in return.

You screamed when you realised that it would kill you both, closed your eyes again to die seeing peaceful darkness instead of this ferocious monster beneath you but the painful intrusion of a pointy blade never came.

Loki ducked just in time, pulling you with him as the impact of the bright light scattered around him and sent him flying through the cosmos. Pain shot through your body, the firm jerk rippling through your limbs like jolts of electricity and then, after what felt like minutes of falling, you clunked to the ground, your nails digging into moist earth and pieces of debris and litter.

It took you a while to manage to breathe again, forcing yourself not to get lost in another panic attack as you rolled off Loki, who had, fortunately, absorbed most of your fall and checked your body for any injuries. Your left elbow felt like it was sprained, other than that, however, you were fine.

Loki moaned as he propped himself up, taking a suspicious look around himself before locking eyes with you.

“Are you alright?” He asked, surprising you with his sudden care. Even if you wanted to, you were incapable of responding in a full sentence.

“Physically,” you stated out of breath, your voice shaking along with your trembling body as you followed his example and examined the place you had landed on.

You came to one conclusion. This was not Earth anymore.

Chapter Text

Thor fell from the sky like a poor little bird that had lost its wings. He rose from the dirty ground only a few feet away from Loki and you—his eyes darkened visibly, his fingertips crackling with what looked like surging blue electricity.

“Brother…” Loki started insecurely.

“This was your doing!” He roared. He was going to lunge at him, you could practically feel the tension between them when Thor took a threatening step forward. You didn’t exactly know what Loki had done to anger the God of Thunder this much but if they killed each other now, things—wherever they stood—would get even worse.

“Will you two stop fighting for just a minute?!” You shrieked, panting. “Where are we?!” With a start, your voice grew more anxious. “This doesn’t look like… like Earth.”

“It is not,” Loki confirmed. He was surprisingly calm for someone who just had just flown through an unknown part of space to land on foreign territory. It probably wasn’t the first time he ended up in an unpleasant situation like this.

“No, it’s not, we’re stranded and it’s your fault, you foul—“

“Thor, shut up! What happened?” Naturally, you had absolutely no reason to defend the God of Mischief, it was what you tried to convince yourself of when he frowned in surprise. The thought of Thor breaking his jaw, however, was oddly unbearable.

“What happened? He killed our father, that’s what happened! Hela on the loose, Asgard in danger and it is all your fault!” He yelled enraged, attracting the attention of a few cloaked and masked figures camping on a hill. You discovered them just then. Whoever they were, they did not seem friendly—and now, they were heading towards you curiously, their weapons, which looked like strangely shaped swords and guns, raised, ready for attack.

“Thor, I’m sure there’s an explanation for all of this but we should… run.” You said as peacefully as possible. Whether you failed, you could not tell but right there, Loki noticed the hostile inhabitants of this funny place too and clearly, he did not trust them either.

“I do not run, I will fight whoever dares to—“

Thor paused, remembering with a start when he stretched out his right hand to call for his hammer, that it was gone, destroyed by the Goddess of Death.

“Thor, we must go!” Loki urged him on energetically. At this point, you didn’t even care they called him the Trickster. You followed him like a blind and helpless puppy, almost reaching for his hand when you stumbled over a rusty piece of machinery.

Thor only reluctantly joined you when you disappeared behind one of the many massive hills of trash and debris, looking for a place to hide. Loki found it soon after. What resembled a cave and towered up into the sky like a vast mountain made of grey and brown rock, you took shelter inside what used to be some kind of spaceship. A few of the leather seats were still intact, other than that, however, everything had been utterly destroyed and torn apart. At least the furniture was clean—a little dusty maybe—but other than that, bearable. It would do until you found a way to leave this eerie place again.

“This is ridiculous, I am going to find us a way back now.” Thor growled impatiently, not even bothering to sit down and rest for a while. You, on the other hand, were in desperate need of a break. Travelling by what you assumed must have been the infamous Bifrost from Norse Mythology, had taken its toll on you, especially after falling right out of it to mercilessly be hurled through the universe.

The fact you had involuntarily accompanied them in the first place didn’t seem to affect the brothers at all. Now that you had shut your mouth and crawled into a corner, they even ceased to acknowledge your presence.

“Thor, listen to reason. If you go on a rampage now and demand a free ride back to Asgard, these people, whoever they are, will most likely execute you. This is not on Midgard.” Loki mooted, still careful about how to behave around the Thunderer. One wrong word, so you figured, and he would explode.

“You both stay here.” Loki ordered thoughtfully. “I am going to explore the place. Surely, someone here is responsible. I will get us out of here. Leave it to me.” He winked at you confidently when you looked up with a worried frown. Your heart skipped a beat upon the gesture, causing you to lean back against the metal wall of the cave-like shelter. His god-damn eyes…

“Loki, don’t you dare leaving n—“ The God of Mischief disappeared in a shimmer of green light before Thor even had a chance to fling a piece of debris at him. It flew right through him, making him scream out in hot anger that vibrated through the whole cave and made you shiver.

Thor’s rage was understandable but what choice did you have other than to pray that Loki was indeed going to find you help? You had read about his silver tongue. If Loki was as skilled with words as you believed he was… could you trust him enough to get you all back to Earth alive? Your breathing quickened.

Heaven, what had you gotten yourself into? Scratching the back of your hand so fiercely you drew blood, you thought about your spoiled job interview and the tense cab ride with Susan and Karen yesterday afternoon. Susan who was now dead. All of that… had it all really happened only less than twenty-four hours ago?! This was madness, it was insane! Moaning, you buried your face in your hands, your fingers shaking.

“(Y/N)!”

Then, everything went black.


“Why not? This place is not so bad after all.” His voice was so smooth, so alluring and… almost… yes… it was seductive. Blinking tiredly, you opened your eyes only to realise you must have fallen asleep. How on Earth was this possible? With all the excitement, the fear and the panic pumping through your very veins, how had your body been able to claim a few hours of peace? “Don’t worry, brother. I have this all worked out.”

“Loki, we need to get back to Asgard now, we need to stop Hela before it’s too late.”

“And then do what? Our sister…” Loki paused. “…destroyed your hammer like a piece of glass. She is stronger than both of us. How would you think for even one second that we could still save Asgard or its people? You’re not seriously thinking of going back, are you?”

“What are you saying, that we do nothing and stay here on Sakaar?!” Thor stood, the noise of leather rubbing against clothing items gave him away. You stretched, suppressing a yawn. You didn’t want to be caught eavesdropping but then again, whatever the two of them were discussing, if it involved getting back home, it was your business too.

Sakaar. Was this what this place was called?

“If we both want a chance to survive, then yes, that is what I’m saying.”

“Y-you want to stay? What about me?” You tossed in nervously, wrapping your arms around yourself to fight the cold. It had crept up your limbs when you woke up, tickling your skin and creating goose bumps all over it.

“(Y/N), are you alright?” Thor said. “You passed out, I had to catch you before you collapsed to the ground.”

“I did what?” So you hadn’t slept after all. You had had another panic attack and simply fainted. Shit. How long had you been out? According to the eerie darkness outside when you shot a glance over to the entrance to the cave… for several hours.

“You wouldn’t wake up, so I lay you down and checked for your pulse every hour.”

“Thanks.” You muttered, massaging your temples. “So… Loki… c-could you… I mean, find out where exactly we are?”

“Indeed I could. The planet we are on is called Sakaar, it is some kind of collecting void for things that get lost in the vastness of space. I met the man who owns this place. He is… a lunatic but he will come in handy. It will take me a while to gain his trust.”

“So you can get us back?” Your eyes lit up, hope spreading in your chest. It almost loosened the right knot Susan’s death and the constant fear inside you had entangled there.

“Not exactly. Tomorrow, I have an appointment with the Grandmaster’s finest tailor.”

Scoffing, you narrowed your eyes. “Really? Getting new clothes, is that really a priority right now?!”

“We will need to blend in if my plan is supposed to work out, little minx. You would be well advised to do the same.”

Little minx.

“What plan? What plan of yours, Loki?” Thor roared.

Little minx. Why would he call you that? It was hard to tell if he was mocking you or simply using a tender nickname. You… doubted it would be the latter.

“In time, brother, the Grandmaster will, perhaps, befall an accident and then you and me…” He raised his thumbs, his lips pressed together to a thin line.

“Who is this Grandmaster?”

“He… kind of runs this place,”

“Loki, no. I will not play your games any longer.”

“Of course not, why would you? I guess I will just have to do it alone, you know. Like I’ve always done.”

A painful expression washed over your face, making you frown. Why was it so easy to feel compassion for this man when he said things like that? You didn’t even know him.

“Loki, I want to leave too.” You said gently, forcing your voice to sound strong.

Thor simply ignored you. “I can’t believe it, we have been here for a few hours and you already have thoughts about ruling this place yourself, do you even hear yourself, brother? You cannot be selfless just for once?”

“What did I do on Svartalfheim to protect your petty mortal girlfriend?!” Loki yelled. You flinched when he suddenly raised his voice, biting your lower lip.

What had happened on Svartalfheim? The Edda spoke of dark elves when it came to this realm, and you had heard of the incident in Greenwich. You didn’t know Loki had been there too.

“Then do what you did for Jane for our own people!” Thor demanded, clenching his fists.

“To what end?!” They were both screaming now, eliciting a scared whimper from you. If they continued like this, the scavengers—at least that’s what they looked like—would find you before the moon rose to its peak. If this planet had a moon in the first place, that was.

“M-m-maybe w-w-we should try to sleep a little, there isn’t much we can do right now, especially when it’s dark outside and you two fighting won’t get us anywhere either.” You managed to choke out, hoping your voice wasn’t shaking too much when you spoke.

All of your bones were aching and complaining anyway, the weakening state of unconsciousness not having helped you to recover at all.

“She is right. I would appreciate lying down for a while too.” Loki stated, pursing his lips in a superior manner.

“Fine. Go rest, (Y/N). I do the watch, it’s way too quiet out here.”

“Yes, about that…” Loki began when you lay down on two of the battered leather seats, using your jacket as a blanket.  “Mind those scavengers. They capture strays and sell them to the Grandmaster as gladiators or slaves.”

Your eyes widened. Slaves. You needed to get off this planet.


 

 

About an hour passed until you woke up again from your light slumber, panting heavily as you did. Your face was wet, your eyes were burning. Had you been crying in your sleep?

A sob escaped your lips, the ache in your chest clouding your mind. It took you a moment to orientate yourself but when you did, only a stone’s throw away, you found Loki, lying comfortably on a couple of old leather seats which he had converted to a provisory bed.

“Then I guess I will have to do it alone, you know. Like I always do.”

The déjà-vu of yesterday night flooded your brain.

“I can come with you tomorrow,” you suddenly heard yourself whispering, using the sleeves of your jacket to dry the last of your tears. Loki took a deep breath.

“You will get yourself killed, little minx.”

There it was again. Little minx. So he was awake too. Perhaps he had even heard you crying.

“It’s short of a miracle I’m alive now, if I were to die, it would have happened already.” You countered defiantly. “I’m done with being treated like a poor and defenceless child and I am certainly not going to root here in this broken plane until you decide it might be time to go home.”

If you were to fight Loki… no, you wouldn’t stand a chance, not in a million years and not even with your self-defence skills. The God of Mischief turned around to face you. His blue eyes met yours, freezing you in place.

“Look, I am not very keen on having landed here as well. I don’t know how to get away from here yet but for now, I believe it might be a good idea to simply stay. I have seen how the… upper class people live in this place and it does not repel me.” He hissed.

You swallowed thickly. “So Thor is right? All you ever care about is saving your own skin? To think that I was actually worried for you when you went to Norway through that spooky portal...”

Loki frowned. He seemed almost confused but as were you. Now that you had admitted it, it felt even more off. This wasn’t right, definitely not. Loki seemed to share your opinion.

“He’s your brother!” You continued quickly. “Maybe I’m not that important but your home—Asgard—it is. Hela killed one of my best friends and she was an innocent. What will she do to your home planet then?”

Talking to him calmed you down, it felt like yesterday night. He had an inexplicable talent for distracting you from the dull ache in your heart, even if he triggered your anger.

“Asgard is all but lost already. The sooner Thor realises that, the sooner he will listen to reason.” He simply said.

You paused, considering his words.

“What did he mean by… you killed your father?”

The God of Mischief sighed. He was very well aware by now that you were merely curious, attempting to understand him. It had been a while since anyone had tried to do that and it was a nice change for once, even if usually, he praised the fact he could not be riddled.

“I did not kill him. I banished him to Earth after erasing his memories with a spell but he managed to break free from it.”

“Why a-and… and how? They said you were locked away in Asgard, expiating in a prison cell for what you did in New York.”

A smirk crept up on his lips, quickening your breathing. His damn eyes were sparkling mischievously in the dim light, promising tricks and charming words. It was irksome how you reacted this intensely to him after learning he was indeed a very selfish god, admitting himself he would rather stay on Sakaar than help his own people.

“That I did.” He went on. “Until Thor freed me because he was in desperate need for my help.” He explained triumphantly. “After that, he remained on Earth, believing I had died in Svartalfheim and I was free to claim the throne.”

“You mean…”

“Yes, little minx, I am, as of now, the rightful king of Asgard.”

Swallowing again, you looked up at him.

“If you are, then tell me what kind of king leaves his own people behind? Aren’t you supposed to protect the nine realms?” You said it because it was the right thing to say. What Loki did was wrong, in a way but somehow…

“What am I supposed to do?” He spat through gritted teeth. “You have seen with your own eyes what Hela is capable of. By now, and until we find a way back, Asgard will be in ruins already.”

You replied nothing to that. You hated to admit it but Loki had a point. What would you do in his shoes? Surely, you wouldn’t dare to take on Hela alone, you would try and hide yourself, to survive by any means necessary. Yes, you concluded. You… you agreed with him.

“Alright,”

“What?”

“I said alright. But you can’t stop Thor from trying to defeat Hela.”

“I know.”

“Will you help me get back home?” It wasn’t a question, not really. You were sleepy already and glad for Loki’s presence this close to you. It lured you into believing you were safe, at least for this very moment. Shortly before your eyes fell shut and you drifted off, you imagined him saying Yes. I promise.

Chapter Text

Loki was still reluctant of letting you join him to meet that tailor he had been speaking of but unless he could magically let water and food appear in front of you, he would be confronted with how stubborn you could be. You hadn’t eaten or drunk anything since the morning at Strange’s house, shortly before Hela had attacked yet again and unlike the two gods you were stranded with, you would be dehydrating a lot quicker.

“You know I can bring you some food here.” He said in an annoyed manner when you followed him outside, demanding once more to come with him. “You will only cause me more trouble than you are worth.”

Your lips parted. That stung, though you had phrased it yourself—you were not that important. Silently, you looked up at him, attempting to convince him with a single, desperate glance. It had worked before when he tried to snuff the very man who had saved you from Hela so perhaps, it would be working now too.

Loki sighed, closing his eyes for just a moment as if he was trying to keep up an act.

“You let me do the talking. Do not open that pretty little mouth of yours unless I give you a sign, is that understood? And don’t wander off.”

“Loki, you will not take her with you. It’s too dangerous.” Thor interrupted. He entered the broken plane with a grumpy expression on his face, his lips pursed.

“I have not made the decision.” The God of Mischief countered, suppressing a mocking smirk. He knew Thor couldn’t forbid you to explore the planet yourself. Strange had tried to keep you in his house and frankly, he had failed. Hopefully, this was a good idea, after all. You doubted Loki would go to your rescue if you screwed up.

“I will be fine, Thor. My mother always said it’s better to face your fears than to run away from them.” You doubted she had ever been on a different planet.

The God of Thunder gnashed his teeth, staring daggers at his brother. “I will be trying to reach out to Heimdall.” There was an audible judgement in his voice when he spoke, turning his back to you to face the broken window of the plane wreck.

“Good luck with that.” Loki responded sarcastically, heading towards the collection of vast buildings that stretched out about a mile away. They were strange constellations and unlike anything you had ever seen on Earth when you followed him across the disgusting mountains of debris and dirt. You realised only then that you were in fact, surrounded by what resembled a city. The colours of the rainbow blinded your eyes as you followed Loki through the streets, passing more and more scavengers that shot you greedy and incredulous looks.

This place was so… awfully strange. The colours, the people… it seemed like thousands of species and cultures clustered together on one planet where there was chaos, no order and no law. You didn’t exactly know who this Grandmaster Loki had mentioned was but you doubted he would be a very reasonable fellow.

Swallowing thickly, you resisted the urge to reach for Loki’s hand and kept as close to him as possible until you entered the Grandmaster’s house.

“And you are?” He was… orange. His skin was orange. Crudely, the guard crossed his arms before his chest, blocking the hallway.

“King Loki,” the God of Mischief stated smugly. “Of Asgard. The Grandmaster awaits me.”

“Well, get in then. He hates tardiness. Who is that?” Almost disgusted, the orange man pointed at you. He was the one talking. At least your skin didn’t glow in the dark.

“Is the Grandmaster awaiting her too?”

“Not exactly,” Loki began but the guard cut him off.

“Well, if she’s not, she’s to stay put. The Grandmaster doesn’t allow any stray dogs in his place.”

“Stray dogs? Are you kidding me? Listen well, you orange little fu—“

Scoffing, Loki suddenly grabbed your wrist so tightly you winced from his sheer strength, making you shut your mouth instantly. He laughed uncomfortably.

“I understand. I shall pick her up after.” Then, he turned to you, growling quietly so the orange man could not hear his words. “Have I not told you to shut your mouth? You stay exactly where you are and do not move until I come back to get you.”

“Excuse me?! I thought you gained the Grandmaster’s favour! I want to come with you, I’m starving and I’m thirsty!” You hissed. “Did you think I came here for amusement?! Because I can ensure you, I am not amused.”

Stay where you are, little minx,” he threatened darkly. “I will come and get you as soon as I can. Now… can we leave?” He asked the orange man, louder this time.

Glaring angrily at the two of them, you watched him nod and lead Loki to a metal gull-wing door around the corner. They disappeared and you stood there, all alone on a foreign planet with about nothing to defend yourself, cursing yourself for trusting the God of Mischief. You should have known. You should have bloody known!

For about thirty minutes, you sat there on the floor with crossed legs, curled up in the hopes no one would pass by and rocking back and forth slowly. You were close to getting another panic attack and with every second that Loki was gone, you freaked out more.

“The last one only brought me five-thousand units. I’m telling ya, the Grandmaster’s getting picky with what we bring him.”

Footsteps. Voices. There was more than one person approaching you in the long and dimly lit hallway, making you jump up with shaking hands. Hide! Hide! All of your instincts screamed for you to find a cover but other than endless walls and that stupid gull-wing door, there was not much this damn house offered.

“Well look at that!” One of the man shouted, a shit-eating grin revealing a row of brown teeth. Breathing in and out slowly, you fought to hold back your gag reflex.

“Who are you?”

“I… uh… I am… I am…”

“A stray!” He concluded triumphantly, raising his fist high up in the air. “Such a pretty girl. You’ll make a good slave.”

Your blood ran ice cold. Slave. Slave?! Quickly, you pondered your options. Run? No, where to? They would find you sooner or later and even if they didn’t, you would get lost. Fight them? There were three of them. With two men, you might stand a chance, knowing how to place a blow to knock all air out of someone’s body but three? They would subdue you in mere seconds.

Thinking frantically, you took a step back when they started to stroll towards you, a disgusting hunger glistening in their eyes.

“I belong to Loki!” You screamed then, clenching your fists defiantly. Your eyes narrowed. “I belong to King Loki. You better keep your hands off me. He does not like it when people touch his property.”

Smart move, you complimented yourself, taking a deep breath. Crazy bitch!

“Loki?” One of the men repeated dumbfounded.

“He’s the Grandmaster’s guest.” Another explained. “King of a realm, this… Asmart, Astart, Asfart…”

“Asgard,” You corrected, lifting your chin.

“Yeah that. You know, we should take her with us. Just to be sure. I mean, she made it to the Grandmaster’s house without permission, he should know about this… lack of security, if you get my saying. He might even reward us if he’s in a good mood.”

The two other men chuckled—it sounded, to be fair, crazy. Not for a second did you doubt that they were.

“No! I am to wait here for the king! Stop it!”

You struggled fiercely when they wrapped their dirty hands around your upper arms, almost lifting you off the ground and leaving you kicking around helplessly. You even managed to hit one of the men in the shin but fairly, it did nothing. They aren’t human, of course. A mortal man would have screamed in pain, your blows were all but gentle, your self-defence teacher had made sure of that.

So your wild thrashing was all in vain when they dragged you through the gull-wing door Loki had stepped through only thirty minutes ago. A vast room presented itself to you, with a comfortable looking set of colourful leather couches right in the middle of it, surrounded by fluffy carpets. The walls were made of glass—giant windows that offered a marvellous view over… the litter. Beautiful.

Guards were standing mutely in the corners, staring sternly into thin air. You recognised the orange man from earlier and concluded that in the middle of the room—with an oddly interested sparkling in his eyes—sat the Grandmaster. A yellow cloak emphasised his height and grey hair, a straight stripe of blue colour decorating his chin. If this was considered beauty and make-up here on Sakaar, you suddenly started appreciating the compulsion to always look “on fleek” in New York. Mascara was way more bearable compared to this.

Loki was sitting right next to him. His clothing had changed, the green garments replaced by black leather, a yellow cape and blue accents on the fabric. Much to your surprise, the colours suited him well. Loki was a man who could practically wear anything and still look gorgeously handsome in it. His lips were parted slightly when he recognised you, unsure of whether he should let the Grandmaster see that he knew you.

“I’m sorry for disturbin’. We found this one in your hallway, Grandmaster.” The scavenger snarled. Blue eyes met your own. I told you so, you tried to tell him. You shouldn’t have left me all alone.

“When we tried to take her, she claimed to be King Loki’s slave already.” Instantly, his head shot up, alarmed.

“Oh my, you brought your own pet?” The Grandmaster exclaimed, grinning like a lunatic. “My friend, we will be getting along really well.”

“Yes…” Loki mumbled, looking you straight in the eye. You could tell he wanted to strangle you for this. “I believe so too. As I was saying, can I just say it is an honour to be considered a friend? I thought my kingdom was great but here on Sakaar, I cannot help but be astonished by what you have built yourself here.”

“Oh, don’t flatter me! Bring her closer, let her sit at Loki’s feet, I don’t mind. You’re in interesting man, Loki. Very interesting indeed,”

Without forewarning, you were yanked forward once more until you stood only mere inches from them, the two men pushing you on your knees roughly. God, this was humiliating but… better than being dead or sold as a slave, mind you.

Loki leaned down immediately.

“What were you thinking?!” He hissed, whispering.

“I panicked, I didn’t know what else to say!”

The God of Mischief rolled his eyes before turning back to the Grandmaster. “I decided I would leave her outside, for I wasn’t exactly sure you would take kindly in the presence of a lower-ranked being.” He went on, smirking once more. If you brought your fist down to his foot, would it hurt him? Probably not. Quietly, you growled.

“So very considerate! For how long have you had her?” Apparently, slaves were a topic the Grandmaster was widely interested in and Loki, enjoying the power it gave him, was only all too happy to make up juicy details. With every word that left his thin lips, he started another lie, playing along with what you had started in the first place.

“Not too long, actually. She is very exciting company, however. Would you mind bringing her something to drink? Water, perhaps? It brings, unfortunately, one disadvantage to keep a mortal for your amusement.”

“Ah!” The Grandmaster snapped his fingers. Instantly, one of the guards rushed away to get you what Loki had asked for.

Oh dear God, thank you! Sighing, you moistened your lips with the tip of your tongue, imagining how the cool water would run down your throat and freshen up your senses.

“A mortal you say! They are so rare here on Sakaar. Mortals are so… so sensitive. Listen here, Loki, I host regular orgies in one of my most impressive space ships, the Commodore. Would you, perhaps, be interested in sharing her? I can guarantee you, you would enjoy it a lot, you’re in fact very welcome to join!”

Your eyes widened. With your heart in your mouth, you bit your tongue when you took the glass of water one of the guards handed you, forcing yourself not to lash out. Helplessly, you sought out Loki’s gaze. He returned it for only a brief second.

“I don’t usually share my property, if you don’t mind. Mortals are… easily broken.”

“No, no, of course not, I agree with you.” The Grandmaster nodded, pausing. “So, Loki, how long are you planning to stay?”

“I do intend to stay for a while—only of course, if I am welcome.”

The Grandmaster let out a short, hysteric laugh. “I don’t have royal company often, I like that! I will provide you with your own quarters, how about that?”

“There is no need for any additional effort…” Loki started, slowly luring him right to where he wanted him. You were impressed by the God of Mischief’s ability to play with words; a true Trickster—despite your embarrassing kneeling position right now.

“Oh no, no, no, please, I insist, I insist. Your pet, would you like to keep her in your room? I must confess, our cells are completely overcrowded at the moment.”

Loki’s eyes, once more, drifted over to your form next to his seat. Don’t you dare.  “She will stay with me.”

“Excellent. There are no locks, shall I provide you with a collar for the nights?”

“Why not,” he mumbled through gritted teeth so quietly only you could hear it, once more expressing his dismay about your little white lie. “Thank you. But she is very well trained and obedient. I trust her not to run.”

The Grandmaster clapped his hands. “Tell me your secret! So, Loki, do you keep her as your servant only or do you use her for your pleasure as well?” Leaning forward, his eyes widened to hear his reply. You felt like throwing up.

“Occasionally,” Loki smirked mischievously. Fucking arsehole. You already dreaded the worst. “She might be quiet now but she certainly knows how to use that pretty little mouth of hers well.”

You almost spitted out the greedy gulp of water you were attempting to swallow.

“Oh yeah, perhaps she can teach one of mine, how does that sound? I am sure she would be thrilled to share her talents, isn’t that right?” The Grandmaster grinned, imagining the lie Loki had conjured out of thin air in his mind. At least you hoped it was a lie. Yet once again you bit your tongue and said nothing.

“She certainly won’t be going anywhere.” He replied, smiling sweetly. This time you actually kicked him, acting as innocent and inconspicuous as possible. Loki didn’t even flinch.

“No one leaves this place, eh?”

“Oh, about that, I was wondering whether there were, in fact, any convenient ways out of here. I have to admit, your hospitality flatters me and I would like to return the favour someday. Asgard has treasures of which most beings can only dream of—I would gladly present you some of those items as a gesture of my gratitude. Surely, they would enrich this planet’s wealth.”

Damn. He really did possess a silver tongue. Subtly, and without raising any suspicion, he would get the Grandmaster to tell him everything he wanted. Loki was charming—he could have all the women in the room, including you, and even the men, falling to his feet if he wanted to.

“That sounds wonderful! You see, the planet is surrounded by gateways. Yeah, the big one we call the Devil’s Anus. But before you leave, you have to watch my gladiators fight. The contest of champions is what I am most proud of here, you will love it!”

Loki nodded, pretending to show interest—or perhaps he really was. After all, he did intend to stay but then again, why had he asked the Grandmaster about the gateways? For Thor? For… you?

It was then the metal doors of the gull-wing door opened for a third time, now revealing a confident woman with a beautiful face, gorgeous lips, brown skin and dark hair. The armour she wore made her look powerful and intimidating. Jealousy washed over you as you checked her out from head to toe, deciding in the twinkling of an eye that you did not like her.

“Ah! Scrapper 142! Here, meet my guest. This is… uh, this is Loki. King Loki from… from Asgard.”

Scrapper. So this was what those filthy scavengers were called. Of course she had to be the one who shone out. Loki leaned forward, mustering her quietly and when their eyes met, you almost broke the glass of water in your hands. And what was up with those ridiculous white stripes on her face? If she liked dressing up as a zebra, she would be better off in a zoo.

God, how pathetic did you have to look with your dirty clothes, kneeling at Loki’s feet?

“Asgard?”

“Yeah, isn’t that where you’re from?”

Loki raised his eyebrows. “Is it?”

“It was a long time ago,” the girl replied unaffected. Who was she? Did she recognise him? No, she was merely shocked to have met another Asgardian and clearly, she was not pleased with that.

“Scrapper 142 is the best. She always brings me the best contenders.” The Grandmaster explained, eliciting a forced smile from the dark-skinned girl. She hadn’t paid any attention to you yet and quite frankly, you hoped it would remain that way. You’d had enough humiliation for today.

“Is that so?” Loki mused. He was still staring at her. What was so special about her, for Fuck’s sake and, much more importantly, why did you care if he liked what he saw?

“Oh yes. It seems like she knows exactly which lost soul that ends up here on my planet can fight. It made her rich. She brought me my beloved champion, you know.”

Great, so she was smart, skilled and successful. Gnashing your teeth, you took another sip of your water.

“So what do you need, Scrapper 142?”

“I wanted to speak with you but I see you’re busy, I can come back later.”

“No, no, no! It’s fine, we were done for today anyway. Loki, if you need anything else, let my employees know. They will show you to your room and later bring dinner for you and your little pet.”

Finally. You would so kick his arse now.

The Grandmaster stood, quickly followed by Loki who, tilting his head, indicated to you to do the same. You tried to kill him with a single glance when you did, fawning after him like an obedient puppy when one of the guards led him out of the room and through the hallway to what resembled empty quarters.

It was breath-taking. A giant king-size bed dominated the studio apartment, the large windows displaying the horizon. The furniture—new and modern—complimented the fluffy carpet on the floor and the attached bathroom had an actual whirlpool in addition to a shower, with more buttons and functions than any facility on Earth could ever offer.

As soon as the door fell shut behind you and the guard disappeared, you turned around, exploding.

“Was that really necessary? Making me your bloody whore?”

“Oh, I am sorry, should I not have said that? You brought this to yourself, little minx.” He gnarled. His voice was dripping with mockery.

“Would you stop calling me that?!” You snapped. “I am not little, this was your fault! You were the one who just left me there all alone, they were going to sell me as a slave, for Fuck’s sake, what was I supposed to say? I don’t have supernatural fighting skills like you do!”

“In any case I should have concealed you!” He yelled, shaking his head in the process. “If I had known you are too stupid to hide or at least come up with a proper excuse for your presence!”

I am stupid?! I was freaking out, you selfish prick!”

Taking a deep breath, you massaged your temples until automatically, you reached for your hand to scratch the back of it frantically. Do not panic, not again, not again. Your fingernails bloody by the time you realised what you were doing, pulling away quickly.

Still, Loki noticed, frowning.

“Either way, there is no way out now,” he said then, surprisingly gentle. “We stay the night and I contact Thor tomorrow.”

Slouching your shoulders, you took a deep breath.

“You’re going to help him, aren’t you?”

“Am I?” Tilting his head, Loki sought out your gaze, stealing yet another heartbeat from you. What was it about him? You were so angry with him you wanted to slap him over and over until he begged you to stop, hurt him for being this selfish when in fact, you would act no different.

“What changed your mind?”

“A very interesting conversation,” he replied. Flattered, you bit your lower lip. Had what you had told him yesterday night in fact altered his point of view? Perhaps you hadn’t dreamed when hearing Loki promise to bring you back home safely after all. Was it okay to hope for that?

Letting out a shaky breath, you closed your eyes to calm down.

“Go to sleep, little minx.” He ordered tenderly.

You just didn’t understand him. One moment, he was so provocative and cruel you wanted to hate him and then in the next… he was charming and almost considerate. Was this what had brought him the nickname Trickster? Did he play everyone’s feelings like an instrument?

“Please don’t leave me alone here.”

Loki sighed. “I won’t. I will be here when you wake up. Now go to sleep.”

He had proven you he was not to trust. But did you do it, against all reason? Truth was, you didn’t know.

I belong to King Loki. Well, maybe you did after all. So you obliged.

Chapter Text

A warm body was pressed against yours under the soft blanket when you woke up the next morning, the first sunbeams of the day tickling your skin. The numbing feeling of ease and protection flooded your senses as you blinked to get used to the brightness in the room, calming you down.

There was an arm wrapped around your waist, pressing you close in an almost possessive manner. Your eyes flew open when you realised whose arm it was.

Right after hungrily forcing down the strangely colourful dinner they had brought, you’d dropped into the surprisingly comfortable bed, falling asleep almost instantly. Loki must have joined you at some point, and for some odd reason, your heart sped up upon feeling his strong body this tightly against yours.

You swallowed rather nervously when he suddenly stirred, mumbling something incomprehensible before opening his eyes.

“Good morning,” you murmured quietly, unsure of how he would react. For just a brief moment, Loki only frowned, then pulled away from you slowly as if he were confused by his actions himself.

“Good morning.” He finally replied then, climbing out of bed to walk over to the window. Sakaar didn’t exactly look beautiful in the morning—it rather reminded you of how you were not on Earth anymore. Immediately, the familiar feeling of fear dug its claws deep into your heart, making you nauseous.

Calm down, you scolded yourself. Another panic attack was the last thing you needed right now, not in front of Loki. Not again.

“What are we going to do now?” You whispered, facing Loki’s back. The God of Mischief turned around.

We aren’t going to do anything, little minx. I will continue to work on gaining the Grandmaster’s trust and you will go back to Thor where you can’t cause any more trouble.” Frankly, he didn’t sound angry anymore. Rather… teasing. Scoffing, you crossed your arms before your chest.

“Are you still blaming me? The Grandmaster seemed to be rather fond of me, I technically helped you.”

Loki shot you a warning glare. “Did you now? You were never supposed to be here in the first place, little minx.

You were wide awake in an instant.

“Don’t you think I know that? Did you think for even a second that I want to be here? I’m on an alien planet whose inhabitants want to enslave me and with gods I read about in books on Norse Mythology, I never wanted any of this!” You bellowed, breathing frantically.

Damn those tears! Burning hot and salty, they transformed Loki into a black spot before your field of view.

“Did you think I did? I finally had what I wanted. A throne, a kingdom, recognition… Hela took it all away from me all because my humble brother decided to come back and play the hero again. Don’t you think I’d too rather be in Asgard, eating grapes and not worrying about Ragnarok?!” He was yelling now too, making you slump back into bed. Ragnarok. What was Ragnarok? It sounded fairly familiar.

“Loki…”

“I will ask for something to eat for you, then I shall bring you back to Thor.” He decided. You barely stopped yourself from saying I want to stay with you. You were probably better off staying with Thor. Unlike Loki, he would actually care about your well-being and make sure you stayed safe.

Loki has kept you safe thus far, you thought, biting your lower lip.

Still, a simple “Okay,” was all you managed to answer.


Loki made sure to let you pay for lumber him a slave. During breakfast with the Grandmaster, he constantly ranted about how you were in fact so needy you had to be treated like a cherished pet. Upon being asked, however, if he had, perhaps, emotionally gotten attached to you, he gave you an undecided look.

“Perhaps I have,” he had said thoughtfully, and although it had sounded like yet another lie, your heart had skipped another painful beat.

When he sneaked you out, this time concealing you as to not attract any unwanted attention, neither of you spoke a word until you arrived at the wreck of the space ship Thor was hiding in, the impact of what had happened the day before as well as how you had slept cuddled up against each other strong and heavy like a chain of rocks.

Something was happening between the two of you, though you couldn’t exactly tell what it was. Perhaps it was some kind of understanding, a mutual agreement of accepting each other, tolerating each other’s ways. Whatever it was, it surely felt different from how humans usually treated him, that you were certain of.

You almost regretted calling him selfish and vain the other night, even though you knew that it was, to some extent at least, the truth.

“Where have you been so long, brother?” Thor complained when you entered the cave-like shelter, causing the God of Mischief to roll his eyes at the Thunderer.

“I told you I was going to settle down here, however, I did find out some pretty interesting things.” He mused. That he had. You held back a nod as you sat down in a corner, attempting to digest the previous day.

“Well, so have I.” Thor grunted moodily.

“So does this mean you don’t want my help? I couldn’t jeopardise my position with the Grandmaster.” Not once did he mention what role you had played in all of that. Shaking your head, you leaned back and watched the brothers discuss.

Loki was just provoking him now. He knew Thor would, in the end, need his skills to survive, let alone get away from here—and so did you.

“Hela has invaded Asgard. She took the throne and killed the whole of Asgard’s defence, including Volstagg, Fandral and Hogan. Heimdall said she used to draw her power from Helheim before she came back, from the very core of the planet.”

“So you did reach him?” Loki replied unimpressed. Thor nodded. “And I have a plan.”

“So have I.”

“Really? How many times have your plans worked out, Loki?”

“Compared to yours? I am going to help you, so be grateful, brother. What do you suggest we do?” He sneered, sitting down next to you. The Thunderer sighed, ignoring Loki’s question but he might as well admit that he didn’t know.

“(Y/N), how are you feeling?”

“I’m alive,” you answered, raising your eyebrows just a little.

“I will make sure to bring you back home as soon as possible and as soon as we have put an end to Hela’s schemes, then you’ll be safe to go. The Sorcerer will help, I am sure.”

“And what if that takes several months?” You interrupted hastily. “The Grandmaster told Loki the planet was surrounded by gateways. Just send me through one that leads back to Earth.”

“It would tear you apart,” Loki said calmly. “You will need a spaceship. I doubt you can fly one of them.”

The flattering hope that had flooded your body faded as quickly as it had erupted in your heart.

“I’m sorry, (Y/N), but there is nothing I can do for you as of now. I will protect you with my life but Hela has to be our first priority. We have to stop her.”

Disappointed, you sunk back into the battered leather seat. It felt like with every conversation, you were moving in circles.

“Then let me help you and do something. The faster this stupid bitch is gone, the faster I can go home.”

It was selfish—offering your help just to save yourself—it was no less than what Loki was doing in this very moment and perhaps this was the reason you were this intrigued by him. You knew he wouldn’t judge you for this.

“(Y/N), that is too dangerous. We don’t know these people.”

Loki stared into the distance, fixating the broken wall of the space ship at the other end of the shelter.

“Let her spy on the Grandmaster.” He suggested, referring to what you had told his scrappers. You bit your lower lip. At least you would get to spend more time with Loki that way. It was almost strange you preferred him over Thor.

“I knew there was something foul about you.” Alarmed, you all turned around, facing the entrance of the plane wreck. It was Valkyrie, standing in the middle of it with clenched fists and narrowed eyes, a suspicious glistening in them. Her lips were pursed.

“How were you able to follow me?” Loki demanded to know, sounding stern and severe.

The dark-skinned woman shrugged. “I know what magic smells like. So? Who are you and where are you really from? All of you? Tell me the truth and I might consider not telling the Grandmaster right away, Lackey.”

“It’s Loki. And I am of Asgard.”

“The king?” She asked, clearly not convinced. Given she was Asgardian as well, she must have known Odin as the rightful king of Asgard… with her absence, however, not that he had died.

Loki smiled sweetly—it was a threatening, dark and fake smile. “The one and only,”

“Not if I have a say in that. I am Thor, son of Odin. Who are you?”

“A Scrapper,” She shrugged once more. “Son of Odin, huh? If that’s true, your majesty, then why would Odin leave the throne to some vain would-be royal like him?”

“Hey!”

“Loki is my brother. He’s adopted.” Thor murmured darkly. His voice was hoarse and full of pain. You hadn’t even thought about it yet. With the Allfather dead, the Thunderer had lost his father… and in a way, Loki had too. It was getting to him, you could tell. If he had wanted to, he would have killed him long ago already.

“Something you would know if you didn’t hide here on Sakaar like a coward. Or a traitor,” Loki cooed. He was eerily calm given she had just discovered them planning something behind the Grandmaster’s back. He definitely has done this before, you thought.

Again, you bit your lower lip, scratching the back of your hand. It hurt—the wound you had caused yourself last night was still healing.

“Loki, what are you talking about?”

“She’s Asgardian.” You chirped, staring her down spitefully. Now that she was threatening to bust you, you hated her all the more. It was pretty clear she had no respect whatsoever for the royal brothers in front of her. Well, this wasn’t Asgard, after all. She was in charge here on Sakaar.

“Asgardian?”

The Scrapper rolled her eyes. “I was. A long time ago before the both of you ever saw the light of the day. I am someone else now.”

“Then you need to help us. Asgard is in danger—“ Thor started, taking a step towards her. She was quick to react, drawing a pointy dagger within the twinkling of an eye and pointing it at him incredulously.

“I don’t help anyone. If it is, be lucky you’re stuck here because no one leaves this place.”

It was Loki who leaned forward then, his lips parting in surprise.

“You’re a Valkyrie,” he stated, his eyes locking with a barely visible tattoo on her arm which, now that she was stretching out her hand, impossible to overlook.

A Valkyrie? You had heard of them. Read about them in books and seen remarkable, breath-taking pictures. Fierce female warriors, protecting the throne of Asgard with their lives, looking both alluring, powerful and stunning. No wonder she was so… so… so beautiful and strong. Jealousy punched you in the stomach, making you slouch your shoulders and wonder once more what you had done to deserve all of this.

A sigh escaped your lips.

Chapter Text

“Look, forget it. I have. That’s long in the past.” There was more than she let on, both Loki and you noticed in the very same moment. Still, you kept your mouth shut, observing quietly. “Go ahead, try to find a way to escape this place and get yourself killed. I won’t be a witness of that.”

“Odin is dead.”

The Valkyrie froze dead in her tracks.

“Hela, the Goddess of Death has invaded Asgard. Heimdall showed me. She is bringing death and destruction over the entire realm and I need to stop her.”

“Hela,” she repeated, turning around again slowly. “If Hela’s back, Asgard’s already lost. Trust me that if there were an opportunity to drive my sword through the guts of that murderous hag, I would take it. But there isn’t.”

Loki opened his mouth, frowning. You could tell he was already working Valkyrie into his plans.

“There is in fact a way out. The gateways surrounding this planet. Surely one of them will lead us straight to Asgard.” He suggested triumphantly.

“Not Asgard,” Thor interrupted determined. “Helheim.”

The God of Mischief tilted his head in disbelief. “You can’t be serious.”

“I am. Heimdall said Hela draws her power from Helheim, the place she was banished to, she brought the realm under her control. If we destroy that source of strength, she will be vulnerable for us to attack and then, we return to Asgard.”

“You want to destroy Helheim?” Valkyrie tossed in, unbelieving.

“No, I want to shut down the very core of the planet. It will not affect life there… I mean, there’s no life on Helheim, only death anyway.”

Loki rolled his eyes.

“We’d need a stronger ship. Those gateways will tear mine to pieces.” She then continued.

What was happening here? You didn’t trust this woman. Only moments before, she had been threatening you and now, all of a sudden, she wanted to help?

“Why would you want to help us? You came here to report us to the Grandmaster, didn’t you? What makes you think we can trust you?” It was ironic, really, since for the last couple of days, you had been spending time with none other than the God of Lies himself. If anyone wasn’t to trust, it was him but, quite frankly, the fact you were stranded on an alien planet was stressing you out and eating you up from the inside. Loki was all you had, given that even Thor was focusing on bringing peace to his home realm. Loki had allowed you to come with him despite his obvious annoyance, not storing you away safely in a corner until everything was over.

Until then, Valkyrie had been ignoring you completely. There was no reason for her to pay any attention to you, after all, she had gotten to know you as an obedient—more or less—pet kneeling at Loki’s feet. Hot anger boiled in your stomach upon remembering how humiliating it had been.

“I am a Valkyrie.”

“Yes, pretty tragic, you died a virgin,” you murmured groggily, remembering what you had read in Norse Mythology books. Loki smirked when she rolled her eyes and then went on unaffected. “Odin once sent the Valkyrie to fight Hela back when she escaped her banishment. We lost back then…” For a brief moment, painful memories flashed in her dark eyes. “If there is even a slight chance we kill her once and for all, I’m in.”

“I don’t mean to impose,” Loki added, clearly amused. The tension between the Valkyrie and you was tangible, your ugly dislike mutual.

“…but before we can even think about stealing a ship—with which I can be of big help I can ensure you—we need to find out which gateway will bring us to Helheim in the first place.”

“The Grandmaster knows them all,” Valkyrie replied, shooting him a hateful look. “He doesn’t ever talk about them though.”

“I can make sure he will.” Loki promised. “(Y/N) will come with me to spy on him, it will be less conspicuous.”

Valkyrie raised her eyebrows, unbelieving. “Your slave?”

“I’m not his slave.” You grumbled, clenching your fists. Loki held back a chuckle, you could practically feel it.

“Slave? What are you talking about?”

The God of Mischief shrugged, unaffected.

“I will not let you put (Y/N) in any more danger, Loki.”

“Very well,” he sighed. “I shall go alone. Let’s get to work.”


They had it all planned out within two days, excluding you completely. Of course, what help could you have been, being here entirely by accident in the first place? Valkyrie kept shooting you scornful glances whenever you approached Loki, noticing with slight distaste how you sought out protection by his side.

Perhaps it was a natural reaction, her disliking him because you, more or less, got along with him. Every time she was near you, however, you felt like a nasty and unnecessary insect and it made you wanting to throw up.

As if the end of a career that hadn’t ever properly started, Susan’s death, the humiliation of pretending to be Loki’s pet before the Grandmaster’s nosey eyes and this bloody and way too colourful planet wasn’t enough yet, she decided it would be fun to try and bully you.

Her smug smile was disgusting when she returned from a private conversation with Loki, having figured out exactly how to steal the Grandmaster’s access codes to “borrow” a ship.

“This is madness.” He concluded when Valkyrie opened another bottle of what resembled beer. She had left twice to get new supplies, making you wonder how one body could absorb this much alcohol without perishing. But then again, she wasn’t entirely human. God, how you hated her. “It’s worked before, it will work again. Don’t be such a spoilsport.”

With that, she went outside to get some fresh air. It was dark out already, the sun having gone down hours ago and making space for a full moon. Soon, you would have to start counting the days you were here. You had lost too much already. You didn’t want to let go of your sense of time as well.

“What were you talking about, Loki?” You asked casually, sitting down next to him. The God of Mischief smirked.

“Nothing you would have to worry about, little minx.”

“Do you trust her? I mean… she changed her mind pretty quickly.”

“She will be helpful. Just be vigilant around her.”

Of course you would be. After what little time you had spent with Loki already, you knew it was essential to survive. He could have gotten you killed several times already and yet, he hadn’t. Even if he claimed you were but an unimportant mortal—your own words, to be exact—he seemed to care.

He was so… different than what the media had made him out to be, different from how Thor had described him. Bad traits like egoism, this unbelievable smugness and his constant urge to be worshipped, you clearly saw too when you looked at him… and perhaps it was just the fact you were lonely in this godforsaken place but deep inside, so you figured, Loki did have a good heart. It was strange how it had taken you only a couple of days to find out, to convince yourself of how easy it was to trust him.

Whether it was a grave mistake, you were yet to find out but you were willing to take the risk. You hadn’t exactly anything left to lose.

“Thank you,” you suddenly heard yourself whispering, locking eyes with him only to have airplanes take off in your stomach. Heavens, what was happening to you? You couldn’t possibly like him that much. He was intriguing, fascinating, charming and excitingly dangerous even… it was what drew you to him this much, right? There was no way in hell your liking for him could go beyond a casual acquaintance that would end after you had both made it out of here safe and alive.

Loki looked surprised, almost as if no one had ever thanked him for his actions. Softness was reflecting in his mesmerising blue eyes, threatening to melt your knees into a useless puddle of feelings. Tell me this isn’t happening. What was it about him?

“For what?” He finally replied. If anything, he sounded utterly taken aback.

“I mean, you kind of protected me and you didn’t have to do that. I’m not dead.”

Loki pursed his lips, sighing loudly. Your eyes instantly wondered to his mouth and you wondered quietly what it would feel like to… no, stop it.

“You’re welcome.”

Chapter Text

The next day was all but a haste. You had barely slept on your pathetic excuse for a bed, restlessly turning from side to side in the hopes of finding a relatively comfortable position but no matter how hard you tried, sleep would not come. Too stirred up were your bloody emotions and confusing feelings for the God of Mischief, who had spent the rest of the night with Valkyrie, riddling out a diabolic plan.

Your heart ached upon seeing them together, exchanging their skills, knowledge and experience. What was that? Jealousy? That was impossible. Loki was a god and you were but a “mere” mortal, unimportant, like you had phrased it yourself. How would he ever even look at you twice? How would you ever want him to look at you twice?

Last night… you had shared something. No, you had shared something every night, if only by sleeping next to each other and accepting each other’s presence regardless of your origins and actions. Mute agreement and understanding bonded the two of you, even if neither Loki nor you wanted to admit that but of course, your stupid heart had to make yet another awful decision to shatter to pieces even further. First, Susan’s death, then, your involuntary farewell to your home planet and now, feelings for Loki.

Were they feelings? Real feelings? Were you honestly developing a crush on this man?

It was like you summoned him like a demon when suddenly, he entered the remnants of the plane… topless. You hadn’t seen him all morning, most likely he had gone back to the Grandmaster’s quarters to not raise any suspicion and now, nothing more than black and tight leather pants and boots covered his well-defined body, making your mouth water in an instant.

Unwillingly, your eyes roamed over his form, taking in every detail for… for what? Were you honestly committed enough to remember this marvellous view? Oh but you were… Loki was… the term handsome didn’t even come close. He really did live up to his smug “I-am-a-god” attitude. He had all right to claim to be one with these not prominent but clearly visible muscles, the rather pale and flawless skin and the raven hair falling over his shoulders to create a breath-taking contrast.

You swallowed, forcing yourself to tear your gaze away and focusing on the back of your hand instead. You had unconsciously started to scratch it again last night before going to bed, all the while begrudgingly watching Valkyrie and Loki talking for what felt like hours on end and now, your reddened and irritated skin was burning from the pressure of your nails. Well, it was the least of your problems now, including your growing liking for Loki. Your sprained arm had turned out not to be sprained at all too, after all, the pain forgotten and gone soon after your not so graceful landing on Loki.

The God of Mischief chuckled, not bothering to hide his amused smirk as he walked further into the provisory shelter and used his seidr to magically wrap clothes around his body. Green silk with ridiculous yellow accents hid his chest then, causing you to blink and turn your attention to his eyes. His damn blue eyes… bad idea.

He had noticed your staring but still, he said nothing when he mused a teasing “Good morning” before waving his hand. The green shimmering light never ceased to impress you, especially for this time, a tray of fruits and fresh bread appeared before you on the battered leather seat. It looked a lot more appealing and edible like what you had had for dinner two nights before, the smell luring you to take a bite and ravish the taste. Breakfast. Normal breakfast… oh heaven.

“The Grandmaster sends his best wishes to my ‘pet’. He is still very determined to persuade you to teach his slaves how to properly pleasure a man with their mouth.” He explained.

Pleasure a man… how could something so dirty (and disgusting in the context) sound so sensual and… sexy out of his mouth? The way his thin lips had moved to form them made you imagine how his mouth would pleasure you.

Oh fucking shit, what was happening to you?

You growled to express your dismay and scare the thoughts away, rolling your eyes insolently. “Well, at least he gave me some proper food. Thank you.”

Loki nodded. For just a split second, his expression turned somewhat… gentle, soft even as he watched you dig into the fruits and bread almost… caringly but then, as quickly as you had assumed to have spotted it, it was gone again, replaced by sternness and curious… irksome interest for who entered the cave next.

Valkyrie yawned, a half empty glass bottle in her hands as she stalked past him and came to a halt in the middle of the vast space, arms akimbo and, as usual, completely ignoring your presence. Had she sensed yet that you hated her with a passion? She must have. You were painstakingly trying to be obvious. Not having her talk to you was, actually, a blessing.

You desperately wanted to ask him what they had been talking about last night. Hell, you wanted to know if there was something else between them as well, even if it would humiliate you. Loki was a smart man, he would instantly know you were into him.

The thought made you drop the grape you were about to eat, your mouth agape with utter shock. You were into him. You were not into him, for Fuck’s sake.

“We’re gonna get ourselves killed,” she started, her voice a little slurry already. You rolled your eyes once more. Oh, drunk this early already? How ladylike. “Thor’s crazy if he thinks we’ll be able to destroy the core of a planet just like that. Even if we do it for the sake of stopping Ragnarok.” Snapping her fingers to emphasise her words, she cocked her head to mutely ask him to join her outside. Her eyes flickered over to you for a brief moment. The message was clear. She didn’t want you to hear whatever they were about to discuss—that, or she wanted to talk about you. This time, it was probably the latter.

You barely resisted the urge to throw a warm bread roll at her. No. This bread roll was more valuable than this stupid drunk woman. Were you being childish? Maybe; but right now, you didn’t care.

“You will stay exactly where you are while we are gone, yes?” Loki suddenly spoke. Taken aback, you set down the bread roll and crossed your arms defiantly.

“What else am I supposed to do?”

“There is a range of things I could imagine.” He replied with a smirk, winking at you as he did. Your heart skipped a beat. Fuck you, god damn it! There was no space in your body to feel things such as lust, desire and romance. You had lost one of your best friends, you were stranded on a different planet… the only thing you should focus on was how to survive and instead, your breathing sped up as if you had run a marathon as soon as Loki gifted you with his presence. You were outraged by yourself and yet, you wouldn’t have it any other way… letting the grief consume you like you had before accidentally seeking out Loki at Doctor Strange’s house a few days ago was the far less pleasing option.

“I will make sure to keep an eye on you and conceal you from the scrappers.”

His words stole yet another heartbeat from you. Why would he care?

“H-how?”

“Magic, little minx.”

Your whole body filled with warmth at the thought of it. I will make sure to keep an eye on you. Thor had not proposed that, he had not offered that. Swallowing thickly, you bit your lower lip, facing your food once more as if that banana would provide you with answers to all of the crazy questions racing through your mind.

What am I feeling? Why is Loki being so thoughtful? Why am I jealous of Valkyrie? What the fuck is wrong with me?!

Loki smirked again before leaving the cave without a word of good bye, replacing his presence with confusion and fear. Your anxiety of this planet seemed to have ceased, especially because he was with you—sure, you were still afraid the scrappers would catch you and sell you to the Grandmaster but strangely, the thought of Loki eased and got you worked up at the very same time.

You needed to tell him to be careful, even if it was unnecessary but something inside you wanted him to know you cared and were grateful for his actions the days before—except of course, for the pleasure slave part. You could still kick him in his royal balls for that one.

Smiling to yourself sweetly and lost in thought, you got up on your feet, abandoning your breakfast to step out into the more or less fresh Sakaarian air—and froze in mid-action when your lips parted to call him back.

You saw Valkyrie before you saw him, her mouth pressed tightly against Loki’s. Both her hands were clutching at his robes as she pushed him against the battered corpus of the plane wreck. You were desperately hoping that the silent moan that escaped his lips was from surprise and anger and not pleasure when you stumbled back, bolting to where you came from.

Chapter Text

This shouldn’t bother you. Loki was a god, Valkyrie was just that—a Valkyrie. They were perfect for each other, strong, fierce, confident… you couldn’t have possibly thought for even a second that you’d stand a chance of winning more than just his friendship? Hell, Loki wasn’t even a friend, to him you were probably nothing more than useless luggage he had to carry around on this goddamn planet.

The first sob escaped your lips after Thor announced their departure. Loki did not come back inside. You were glad he didn’t—the pain of seeing him again now, imagining how he had been snogging that gruesome Asgardian woman stung in your heart like someone had shoved a glowing dagger inside it.

How was this even possible? How could you feel this broken and hurt? You barely knew the God of Mischief, hadn’t known him for longer than a couple of days and still… the tears wouldn’t stop rolling. Not when you tried to finish what was left of his breakfast, not when you tried to lie down and rest for a while and not even when you peeked outside in the hopes of finding something interesting or useful.

All those tears… all those tears for a man you couldn’t have. Crying shamelessly into the silence of the plane wreck, you buried your face in your hands. You came to one decision. Loki mustn’t ever learn about your feelings for him. Your ridiculous, unreasonable and dangerous feelings that were all but painful, annoying and as unnecessary as your presence here on Sakaar.

And then the anger came. The urge to toss Valkyrie down an abyss, to rip out her flawless hair and wipe that smug grin off her face grew with every second you dried your tears with your jacket, cursing your absurd feelings once more. Stupid, stupid, stupid!

Maybe you should just leave on your own, abandon this fucked up place for good. Thor made no effort to get you back to Earth, after all, which was understandable, given he had to save his own people and still… you wanted to knock him over with his broken hammer for neglecting your desire to return home.

It felt like a warm summer day, when everyone was hot, drinking ice cold water—but no one around willing to share some of the soothing liquid with you. Sighing, you examined the back of your hand. The wound was itching, the scratches reddened and still a little bloody. If only you were back in that apartment they had given Loki… you could take a shower.

Why on Earth hadn’t you thought about that before? All of a sudden, you felt dirty. Not just because of your excessive crying session and snot you had had to wipe into your jacket rather than a tissue but also because of your damn feelings that clawed at you like nasty parasites.

Those feelings for this mischievous man you wanted to hate—but couldn’t, even after seeing him… no. Stop thinking about it.

You were tempted to just leave the plane wreck, ignoring the promise Loki had wrung from you and find his quarters to enjoy a warm bath. It was partially your doing the Grandmaster was so fond of him, after all. You might as well draw an advantage out of your fucked up situation.

But you were scared. Scared to run into some more scrappers, scared to be sold, scared to be killed. No. Staying here was for the best. Even if it took hours of boredom and pain.

 

It did take hours. Hours, in which you kept forcing back tears, pacing up and down until you were sure to have left a trace on the ground and then finally, lying down again, trying to sleep. It would not come. Instead, with every minute that passed, with every inch the sun disappeared a little more behind the endless piles of debris, concern rose deep inside your chest.

There was still no sign of them, still no sign of Loki. What if something had happened to them? With a start, nerve-wrecking concern mixed with your heartache, memories of you lying next to him awakening and bombarding your body until your mind begged you for release.

When you closed your eyes, you could still feel his strong arms around your waist, protective and possessive, luring you into safety. You wanted to be the one kissing him, the one making him moan in pure bliss.

Who had initiated this kiss? Loki himself? Valkyrie? Upon their first meeting, it had seemed like they loathed each other. They probably still did, so what was this? Part of Loki’s crazy plan? A love-hate-relationship that did no good to anyone? No, wait… you didn’t want to know, not really.

Not if all that it did was causing you more agony and—

The tortured grunting in the distance made you halt and hurl to your feet. Your vision went black for a second but you ignored the dizziness overcoming you when you staggered outside, the ability to breathe leaving you for a full thirty seconds at what you saw.

Valkyrie was limping. A bleeding wound decorated her forehead right above her right eye—she didn’t seem weakened, instead, she was on fire. Furious, screaming, disgusted and indignant. Her words were but a blur to you, almost as if deafness took over, for all you focused on only the fraction of a second after was Loki.

Tired and exhausted, he climbed up the piles of debris towards you—towards the plane wreck—and let himself fall on his provisory bed without a word. He barely made it as he was panting and coughing, holding back cries of pain. Had he even noticed your presence?

He was injured too. His right hand was covered in nasty burns, bleeding heavily and already forming blisters. A shocked whimper escaped your lips.

“W-what happened?” You didn’t pay much attention to Thor and Valkyrie once they were close enough as well, instead rushed over to Loki’s side and knelt down before him. His hand looked even worse up close. Resisting the urge to gag when the smell of burned flesh filled your nostrils, you bit your lower lip and watched him close his eyes to restore his energy.

“We got surprised by that stupid dog…” Valkyrie started, shooting Loki a disgusted glance.

“Dog? What dog?”

Loki growled. “Fenris. Hela’s wolf. He was guarding her source of power.”

“Yeah, only he was merely a distraction.” Thor tossed in. He too was covered in blood, dirt and grime, yet he seemed hardly affected by the recent events. “With the fire demons, the wolf was the least of our problems.”

“Forget the fire demons!” Valkyrie suddenly shrieked. “Your adopted brother is a monster!”

So this was what this was about. Not the fight. Not the probably failed mission that had almost killed them.

A monster? Your heart stung as if the Asgardian had plunged a dagger into the muscle, only this time, the drowning sadness you had pitied yourself with for the last couple of hours, made space for an undying and seething rage.

“What are you talking about, Valkyrie?”

“He is a Frost Giant.” She spat.

Loki hissed. “I saved your life! And Thor’s! The fire would have swallowed you up as a whole!”

“I don’t care! You’re a monster. All the grief and pain your race has brought over Asgard after I left… how would you let someone like him rule our people?” She said then, turning to Thor for a moment. “I can’t believe we… you can consider yourself lucky I didn’t kill you then and there.”

A Frost Giant. You remembered the stories. Rulers of ice bringing cold and death over Earth, centuries ago. Forerunners of Ragnarök. So Loki wasn’t Asgardian after all. He was a Jötun, he… he could turn blue and create ice and snow with his bare hands.

“I am honoured you let me live.” Loki replied, sarcasm dripping from his voice. He was still in pain—it was prominent in the tone of every word he spoke. But there was more to it than that.

What difference did it make? With a start you recalled what you had seen before their departure. Valkyrie kissing Loki like her life depended on it, losing herself in his touches and the sensation of his soft lips… how could all of this be insignificant now just because he was of a different race? Humans had brought a lot of pain to their own planet too in the past. They still did now and yet, here you all were, falling for each other.

He was still the man you had, against all reason, developed feelings for.

You enslave people for a disgusting old geezer after leaving the place you have sworn to protect and now you threaten Loki for saving your life with his abilities?! What the fuck is wrong with you, Valkyrie?!” Fuming, you rose to your feet and clenched your fists.

His pain was yours. The anxious glistening in Loki’s eyes was barely visible but when you had looked up at him, you noticed.

“Get the fuck out of my sight before I scratch out your eyes.” You spat through gritted teeth. Valkyrie instantly took a threatening and combative step forward, only to be held back by Thor who sensed she would indeed attack and make you pay for your bold choice of words and Loki… Loki simply stared, his hand still aching and taking up most of his attention, though you could tell he still listened to every single word being exchanged. If he was impressed by your tantrum, he did not show.

Valkyrie mumbled something you couldn’t quite understand before she left the plane wreck again, stomping off to her ship. No one dared stop her, not even Thor who knew they could still use all the help he could get.

“I’m sorry,” you finally whispered, kneeling down once more to carefully examine Loki’s hand. You knew he had extraordinary healing abilities, yet the process seemed to slow down whenever you laid your eyes upon his injury.

“It will heal, little minx.”

“I know. I mean Valkyrie. She had no right to say that. I’m sorry.”

The God of Mischief frowned, surprised by your words. Leaning back just a little, he settled for a nod.

“If she can’t accept who… or what you really are, no matter what it is, she’s not the one.” You continued, enhancing his confusion. “I mean… I saw you kiss.” You explained quickly.

Loki smirked weakly. “We did a lot more than kiss over the last two days.”

Your heart skipped a beat, his words punching you in the guts mercilessly, mocking you as they did.

“You… you had sex?”

“Several times,”

“Oh.”

He had slept with her. Loki had… he might as well rip your heart out. What was that about being his pleasure slave again? Right now, in this very moment, you longed for your shared lies to be real. Would it hurt less then? Hardly.

“Now, don’t act so coy, little minx. It was just sex but I doubt she will go near me again after today.” It was just sex. Sex with a real Valkyrie. No feelings? No strings attached? Your tongue itched to ask him and pry into that personal matter even further, your lips, however, seemed to be glued together as you recalled how Valkyrie had called him a vain would-be royal. Had she changed her mind? Or was she simply as attracted to his looks and cheeky attitude as you were?

In the end, it was shame that held you back. Shame that although you felt sorry for Loki and the spiteful words Valkyrie had said, whatever they had been seems to now have ended before it had even properly begun… right? Was it okay to be glad? No.

No, it was absolutely not okay and yet… you didn’t feel guilty. You were actually beyond happy about it.

Chapter Text

“Where is Loki? I need to talk to him.”

Loki had explained that burns usually took him a lot longer to heal than regular injuries. Given he was a Frost Giant, the coldness’ biggest enemy was, after all, fire. You had watched in awe how he had frozen the piece of cloth you had found to wrap around his palm to cool it and then asked him how exactly he had saved Valkyrie’s life.

She was being ungrateful, racist even. And now she was back, bragging with her fierce appearance and staring you down like a venomous little insect.

“You’ve said enough today, don’t you think?” You spat in response, your lips curling.

“What business is that of yours, you’re just a slave. Know your place, for Valhalla’s sake.”

“Oh my God, for the last time, I am not a slave! We just made that up, okay?!”

“Okay,” Valkyrie shrugged, proceeding to step even closer to you. “Then why are you even here?”

“It’s complicated.”

“Is it?” She replied unbelievably. “Well then, I need to talk to Loki. Where is he?”

“Right now? I don’t know. He disappeared shortly after you called him a monster.” She would be stupid not to hear the judgement in your voice. She did, of course—and when she simply raised an eyebrow seemingly unimpressed, you opted to lunge at her and scratch off her face until she was crying like a little school girl.

“He is a monster. I won’t apologise to him for that. That’s not what I’m here for,” Valkyrie sighed, leaning against the battered wall of the plane wreck. “But I realise he has saved my life and I owe him. Might as well work with him as long as Hela’s still out there.”

“Wow,” you breathed out. “So you want to tell him that he doesn’t deserve an apology but that you could still use him on your revenge trip?” Growling, you stood, facing her with gritted teeth. “Is there a specific reason for why you are so bitter? A traumatic childhood experience, maybe?”

Valkyrie stared daggers at you.

“Choose your next words wisely.”

“Oh, have I hit a nerve? Now you know how disgusting Loki feels, especially after you slept with him! If you can’t swallow your own medicine, you better shut the fuck up and suck it in!”

Her battle cry was all but terrifying. Like a fury she pounced on you, daggers drawn faster than the twinkling of an eye. You docked down with a scream when she reached back to slice you open—your kick against her shin did little to nothing.

Instead, she brought her foot to your stomach, sending you slithering across the floor like a drunken snake. Grunting in pain, you staggered back to your feet, clenching your fist in the process. You actually managed to hit her upper arm before she hauled off once more, this time cutting your cheek.

Stinging agony spread on your face, your skin burning like fire as you felt a red liquid dripping down your neck. The smell of blood made your stomach curl but even worse, it made your aggressiveness and anger seethe.

Your wrist collided with her neck and had her gasp for air, satisfaction flooding your body for just a brief second before you were roughly pulled back and practically thrown against the wall.

Loki’s lips were parted as he pressed his whole body against yours, his hands effortlessly catching your wrists to stop your childish struggling. You were powerless against him, you knew, and still, the adrenaline in your body died down only slowly.

“Are you out of your mind?” He hissed, his voice an angry collection of words in a heavy British accent.

An indignant scoff escaped your lips. “She was the one who attacked me!”

It was only then you noticed how close he was to you. His muscles danced against your body, his face only mere inches from yours as he narrowed his eyes and then fixed his eyes on the injury on your cheek.

You didn’t put up a fight when he brought his fingers to your face to examine it, instead bathed in the sensation of his hand on your skin. It was cool and soft… like the ice cold kiss of a snowflake. Your lips parted. Should you apologise? You had defended him. There was nothing to apologise for, especially since Thor was, as you could see from the corners of your eye, occupied with calming down Valkyrie and explaining to her that you were under his protection and she was not to attack you again.

“It doesn’t hurt,” you stated bravely, right before Loki wiped away a bit of blood. You flinched when the pain struck across your face, stunning you for a brief moment. He raised his eyebrows. “It doesn’t hurt much.” You corrected yourself.

The God of Mischief only rolled his eyes in response.

“Where were you?” You asked when he retreated, letting go of you. The loss of his warmth was tragic, the urge to fling yourself into his arms growing with every second that passed. “Are you okay?”

Frowning, he nodded. “I am. I was with the Grandmaster and I will return to my apartment tonight. You will come with me.” Your heart skipped a beat. He wanted you to join him? “They have seen us together and they will become suspicious if you suddenly disappear on me.”

Oh. Well, he had a point there. The servants bringing dinner to Loki every night would idly wonder where his precious pleasure slave had gone. Biting your lower lip, you nodded. Besides, that way, you would finally get to take a shower.

“So? Are you going to explain why you believed you could take on a Valkyrie alone, little minx?”

You gnashed your teeth before wrapping your arms around yourself. Because I think I am falling for you and hate her insulting you, that’s why. Instead, you shrugged.

“I know why.” He then suddenly said calmly. His voice was provoking, mocking even. Panicking, you looked up to meet his blue gaze, your heart skipping a beat.

“Y-you know?”

“Yes. I know jealousy when I see it.” What? No! “The feeling has plagued me myself for many years… growing up with Thor.”

You couldn’t be more wrong, Loki, you thought, sighing as you did. Jealous? Well, maybe yes but not in the way he thought. The fact he had slept with her was still nagging at you and ripping a big hole into your chest. But that was not what he saw. He saw a young mortal girl jealous of the powerful woman whose race went down in history.

“I can teach you,” Loki continued. Stopping dead in your tracks, you stared at him, your eyes widened.

“Teach me? Hang on a second… teach me what?”

“How to fight. If you are to stay here, you will have to be able to defend yourself. So I will teach you. Anything violent can be taught. Valkyrie only has a little head start.”

Oh Loki…

“Y-you… you really want to teach me?”

“Yes. But we will return here tomorrow to do so. If anyone sees me training my ‘slave’, they will ask questions I do not want to bother answering.”

Chapter Text

“I’m not a champ at physics but if the hold of the dagger is heavier than the blade, shouldn’t I throw the knife by gripping the light end?”

Loki chuckled darkly. He was standing so close to you the body heat radiating off of him clouded your conscience. Every movement he made posed yet another distraction to what he was trying to teach you, regardless of how interested you were.

He had had a point—it was essential you knew how to properly defend yourself and oddly, when you had gone to sleep in Loki’s apartment next to each other after a wonderful hot shower, you had been looking forward to some adventurous hand-to-hand combat, where you finally had an excuse to touch him and explore his body.

Were you naughty for thinking that? In this very situation? Your life was in danger, one of your best friends had died, you had almost died and been enslaved and all you could do before falling asleep was wondering about how godly Loki would look naked. What was this? Some kind of self-defence mechanism your mind was developing? A tame version of Stockholm syndrome? Loki wasn’t your captor, you were very well aware of that, however.

“Theoretically, you are right. But if I let you throw these daggers with the blade in hand, you are going to cut yourself, little minx.” He explained tauntingly.

“You’re acting like I have never known violence before. I told you I am taking self-defence classes. Why aren’t we doing that first? Teach me how to throw a punch the way you would do it.”

“The people we are dealing with on this planet are, if anything, humanoid. They will crush you with their thumb, (Y/N), that is why you will be staying away from the battlefield.”

“I wasn’t planning on going at war, Loki.”

Pausing, he looked you directly in the eye and pressed his lips together to a thin line.

“You are already in one,” His expression darkened and for just a split second, you believed to have caught regret sparkling in his blue eyes. It was gone as soon as you noticed.

“Bend your wrist back toward your forearm.” Loki then commanded, pushing your legs apart for better balance. You almost moaned when his hands touched your thighs, his hips bumping against your back.

“Which is your dominant leg?”

“Right one,” you whispered.

The God of Mischief nodded.

“Place your weight on it like this.” Again, he reached for your thighs. You swallowed thickly, starting to believe that he was doing that just to tease you. He couldn’t know, of course, about your growing feelings for him, still, however, he seemed to be using you to fight his own boredom in between trying to figure out how to get back to Asgard and defeat Hela.

Well, if he continued like this, you certainly didn’t mind.

“When you swing the knife forward, you shift your weight from your dominant leg to your non-dominant leg. And make sure to keep enough distance between the blade and your head unless you fancy a new haircut.”

“Funny, really,” you grumbled, rolling your eyes all the while fighting a smile.

“Now throw. Let the dagger slip from your grasp and let your body follow forward. Throw.

You did. Loki’s dagger slashed through the air, rotating more or less horizontally until hitting the plane wreck—only did it not stick like the one he himself had thrown to demonstrate it to you. Granted, you had focused on the dancing of those gorgeous muscles under his dark leather armour of his in the process, still, the result had been impressive.

“You will need to apply more strength,” he remarked when he tilted his head and watched the dagger fall to the ground.

“Really? No ‘well done for your first try’?”

Smirking, his blue eyes locked with yours. You couldn’t tell whether it was a minute or an hour that passed until Thor made an appearance. Valkyrie was right behind him. She only shot you a disgusted glance, raising an eyebrow at the dagger on the dirty ground.

“Any news from Heimdall?” Loki turned away from you just long enough for you to figure out by yourself how to throw the next dagger at the back of the plane wreck as he handed it to you.

Out of the corner of your eye, you saw Thor shaking his head.

“Not yet. Thanks to you, he is on the run. He might be busy,” he replied sarcastically. The God of Mischief rolled his eyes.

Valkyrie opened a bottle of beer. “We need to get to Asgard as soon as possible.”

“Yes, I know but Heimdall is keeping an eye on Hela. We need to be careful and attack when she is least prepared.”

Sighing, you turned back to Loki.

“Did you two talk? I mean… did she apologise?”

Frowning, he opened his mouth. “She did not,”

“But is she still acting this… cold?” A great pun you had not intended to use. You resisted the urge to slap your palm against your forehead.

“I don’t believe that should be any concern of yours, little minx.”

“If you two don’t get along, you are hardly in the condition to save the world together and thus, it affects me as well,” you lied, your tone smug and teasing.

Loki took the hint. He smirked mischievously at you.

“Throw the dagger.” He said, ending the conversation.

It was then you overheard Valkyrie’s voice, turning your attention back to her and Thor.

“…if we keep that stupid mortal girl around.”

Growling, you gripped the hold of the dagger tighter and resumed the correct position. Place your weight on your dominant leg, bend your wrist back toward your forearm.

Just when you were about to throw the dagger, however, you turned, focusing all of your anger on the fierce Valkyrie only a few feet away from you. There was a slight chance you were going to hit Thor but you were willing to take the risk.

You let the blade slip from your grasp—and hit Valkyrie right in her thigh.

A painful scream escaped her lips, followed by a fake gasp on your behalf. Loki’s eyes widened as he stared at the bleeding wound his dagger had caused, then turned his gaze back to you to shoot you a reproachful look.

“Stupid girl, you did that on purpose!” Valkyrie shrieked.

“I swear I didn’t, I’m so sorry! I’ve just learned how to do that. I’m so sorry.” You fought hard to hold back a laugh. You knew of course that Valkyrie just like Thor and Loki possessed supernatural healing abilities and that it wouldn’t take long for her to recover—you hadn’t actually planned on killing her, after all.

Still, and that was the part that scared you the most, the sight of her injury filled you with satisfaction, your revenge soothed for now. She deserved it. She had insulted Loki after using his body for her pleasure and she had offended you. There was no excuse. This woman was a nightmare.

Valkyrie stormed off, muttering vulgar curses in the process. Loki let out a taunting sigh.

“You did that on purpose, did you not?”

“No,” you answered, sounding entirely unaffected. “I was aiming for her head.” He chuckled when you shrugged.


You were sweating by the time Loki was done with your training. It had taken you another three hours of throwing knives on end, your arm aching and protesting with every movement, that he finally agreed on showing you the basic strategies of combat.

Three seconds in, he had thrown you to the ground effortlessly, mocking you for all the mistakes you were making. Apparently, your self-defence teacher hadn’t been so good, after all.

Grumbling, you scratched the back of your hand as you followed the God of Mischief back inside, ready to fall onto your provisory bed and rest your limbs until you had recovered.

You even ignored Valkyrie who, appalled by yours and Loki’s arrival, was lost in a heated conversation with Thor. Her thigh had healed already… unfortunately.

“I need a shower,” you murmured, eyeing your wet clothes in a disgusted manner as you looked down at yourself. Loki chuckled.

“What you need are new clothes. A shower will do nothing if you keep walking around in these garments. You have not changed them since the day I met you.” He stated dryly, as if the explanation was logical.

“I can’t just snap my fingers and magic some new clothes on me, Loki. If I could, I wouldn’t be complaining.”

The God of Mischief only tilted his head in response. You had learned by now he always did that when he pondered over something, intrigued, fascinated or alerted.

“Loki?” Thor waved at him, urging him on to join their conversation. “I know how we will get back to Asgard.”

Loki frowned. “Do tell.”

“You see that gateway? The big one?” He briefly pointed at the red glowing smoke pipe outside, outshining the sun. It was hideous.

Valkyrie nodded. “It’s the Devil’s Anus.”

“The what?” Blinking, the Thunderer shook his head.

“I have heard of it before. The Grandmaster mentioned it briefly when he invited me to his house.” Loki explained thoughtfully.

“Well, I didn’t know it was called that when I picked it. I was able to reach Heimdall again, Loki, that gateway will take us straight to Asgard. It will take us home.” All of a sudden, Thor sounded hopeful—dreamy, even. As if finally, he was going to this city he had been dreaming of for years. If only this were the case.

Silently, your gaze wandered back and forth between the two brothers.

“You do realise we will need a ship a lot stronger than the ones we used to get to Helheim? And even then it’s still risky. We might as well get ourselves killed.” Valkyrie tossed in. It seemed like the only thing this woman ever did was opening beer bottles. So she did now, taking a big gulp and then shooting you an evil glare.

Rolling your eyes, you crossed your arms and leaned back. Your arm was still throbbing like someone had trampled on it.

“Yes, I know, I know. That’s where Loki comes in. I have a plan, brother.”

“That doesn’t sound good,” he mumbled in response. You barely managed to hold back your giggling. Even if his joke was, given the circumstances, anything but nice or funny… you caught yourself laughing quietly.

You really had fallen for this man. When the realisation hit you, you gasped for air like a drowning kitten.

“You made friends with the Grandmaster. Loki, we need one of his ships. One that is big enough to get us back home safely.”

You would actually get to see Asgard then. The place you had read about in books about Norse Mythology… it was impressive. Perhaps… perhaps this was, apart from meeting the God of Mischief, the only positive thing about the miserable situation you were in.

“You are talking about stealing the access codes to his security system…” He trailed of, frowning at the ground.

Thor nodded. “Could you do that?”

“The Grandmaster will hold one of his famous contests of champions tonight. He will be distracted. It will not be too difficult.”

“Then do it,” Valkyrie spat wrathfully. You resisted the urge to steal one of Loki’s daggers and stab her once more.

Loki simply ignored her harsh words and instead smiled at Thor as if he were about to steal cookies from the kitchen. Your heart skipped a beat when he suddenly turned to you.

“You come with me, little minx.”

He didn’t need to tell you twice.

Chapter Text

The prospect of a hot shower was numbing the pain in your limbs as you eagerly followed Loki back to his apartment.

“You know… you didn’t have to hit me so hard.” You started to break the peaceful silence between you—never an uncomfortable one. Knowing this filled you with pride, the butterflies in your stomach swallowing imaginary LSD.

Loki laughed quietly, instantly sending a shiver down your spine as he opened the door to his apartment and moved to let you step inside first. At this time of the day, the hallways were nearly empty. The few guards you had come across, so you figured, would never harm you as long as he was right next to you—you were his property, after all.

“Pain is a good teacher, little minx. Tomorrow, you won’t be making the same mistakes.”

“Sure. Laugh at me. The day will come where I will pin you to the ground.” You teased him in response, grinning wildly as you headed for the bathroom and got rid of your mangled jacket.

Loki smirked. “Is that so? Well, in this case, with me as your teacher, you might manage in a couple of centuries.”

“Great. Motivating… just you wait, you’ll see.” You replied playfully, winking as you did before disappearing into the bathroom and closing the door behind you to remove the rest of your clothes, throwing them to the floor in an untidy pile.

They were ruined already. There was no need to treat them with care, besides, what instead kept your mind busy when you stepped under the shower and enjoyed how instantly, warm water tickled your naked skin, was the fact you realised with a start what you’d just done. You had been flirting with him. You had been flirting with Loki! If the God of Mischief noticed, he did not tell but quite certainly, you had to be more careful, for if you continued like this, he would notice your excessive liking into him faster than you could say mischief.

After what felt like an hour of washing yourself with the scented foam and soaps, you were finally ready to leave the now steaming shower again, your naked and still moist form wrapped in a turquoise towel. You wanted to enjoy the feeling of being clean for a while longer before putting your dirty clothes back on. You almost gagged at the thought of it.

“Do you think they have washing machines on this planet?” You called, hoping Loki would hear you.

He smirked when he appeared in the threshold, his blue gaze boldly roaming over your half naked form. It made you flush so furiously you resembled a mellow tomato.

“I doubt that,” he replied amused, then briefly looked to the dirty pile of fabric on the tiles to your feet. “You won’t be needing them. Now you stay here and get ready. I will… take care of my brother’s… task.”

Get ready? Ready for what? Oh.

“Wait… I’ll be joining you?” The contest of champions. Loki would be one of the Grandmaster’s cherished VIP guests. “Do you really think that’s a good idea?”

“It certainly is an idea. You know he is very fond of you.” It was then you actually did gag. Loki chuckled. “Now get ready.” And with that, he vanished.

You were just about to open your mouth once more and ask him how you were supposed to get ready without any clothes when you suddenly spotted an emerald green dress made of the softest fabric you had ever seen right on the bed sheets.

Your lips parted when you reached for it to properly examine it. It was beyond beautiful, revealing just enough to be sexy but still appear modest. Had he asked the Grandmaster’s lackeys to bring it for you… or had he created it himself? Pouting in awe, you made a mental note to ask him later and dropped your towel to put it on. It fit like a glove. Yes, you thought. Definitely magic.

It took you a while until you riddled out what to do with your hair until you decided to simply let them fall over your shoulders. In one of the bathroom drawers, you even found some utensils resembling make-up among a few bottles of nail polish, remembering that the Grandmaster himself had… blue nails.

You shook your head and instead settled for framing your eyes with the dark coal. You didn’t recognise yourself once your eyes met your reflexion in the mirror. This woman didn’t look like Loki’s beloved pleasure slave wearing his colours. This woman… looked like his queen.

Taking a deep breath, you suppressed what the delicious thought did to your mind and body and then flinched, alarmed, when Loki appeared right behind you. Perhaps you were unconsciously summoning him whenever you daydreamed about him.

The corners of his thin mouth twitched as he eyed you down from head to toe, approving of your appearance with a court nod. You didn’t know what you had expected. A compliment, maybe, an impressed gasp at the very least but of course, you were hardly as ravishing as Valkyrie.

“Your shoes will not do. Put on these.” He said, handing you pair of golden sandals. You simply nodded, grateful for not having to leave barefoot.

It left you wondering if he still thought about her naked body under his. You knew Loki was hurting, his trust issues putting stokes in his wheels. You could barely imagine he would sleep with someone simply for the fun of it… the way his blue eyes had sparkled that day they had returned from Helheim… Valkyrie calling him a monster had hurt him. Perhaps he was not in love with her—hell, you sincerely hoped so—but he certainly didn’t hate her either. Not like you did.

“Did you… did you get the access codes?” You asked him when he led you outside, shortly before one of the Grandmaster’s servants picked you up to escort you to the arena.

Loki winked at you in response. So he did. A shy smile spread on your lips. You did love his playfulness, after all.

“Loki! Come here, come here, sit with me on the couch, are you excited? I am, I am, oh and you brought your pet! Hello there, little pet. Come on, let’s sit now.” The Grandmaster was fuming with enthusiasm when you entered a large VIP lounge. Loki was handed a glass of expensive wine upon your arrival and, much to your surprise, he offered it to you before taking the first sip.

No. Alcohol would make your brain even fuzzier than it already was. Your wit had to be crystal clear if you wanted to survive this evening.

Soon, the Grandmaster grabbed the God of Mischief and seated him on a long and white leather couch. The VIP lounge was located dozens of feet high up in the air, the large window protected by a transparent glass pane bragging with a marvellous view over the entire arena.

You were just about to kneel down on the floor and swallow your pride to not get him in trouble, when suddenly, Loki firmly wrapped his hand around your wrist and yanked you close until you came to sit on his lap. Your heart skipped several beats at once.

“What are you doing?” You hissed quietly—not that you were complaining. The sensation of his strong thigh on your backside and his arm around your hips felt like Valhalla.

“Keep up the act, little minx.”

His smooth voice instantly sent pleasant shivers up and down your spine.

“You will love this. Have you made your bet yet? Between the two of us, my champion is invincible. You can make a lot of money if you trust my judgement.”

Loki laughed, yet you could tell it was fake and so unlike you had laughed together back in his apartment.

“I cannot wait to see him fight.” He responded politely, shifting nervously on his seat. He was struggling. Struggling with… what? Frowning, you opened your mouth to ask if he was okay when you were precipitously interrupted by a cheering crowd.

A broad man made of… stone? Yes. A stone man entered the arena. The fights were about to begin, leaving you no time to pry into Loki’s bets with the Grandmaster.

 

“This is barbaric,” you murmured quietly. Three battles in, you watched a couple of scrappers dragging a bloody and half-dead body away from the arena, a red trail following after them. “Why would anyone enjoy this?”

Loki sighed. “He is a lunatic, I know. Just… pretend you are fascinated.”

Nodding, you bit your lower lip. The Grandmaster turned his head, his greedy eyes widening with curiosity. “What are you whispering about?”

The God of Mischief faked another content laugh. “Forgive me, she is… not used to spectacles like these, it flusters her being allowed to watch.” He explained rapidly, making you dig your nails into his left knee. His hand covered yours in an instant, stopping your attempted payback and making you suck in the cool air as his warm skin touched yours. His palm was soft, his long fingers intertwining with yours to remove your nails from his knee.

“Ah, yeah, I can imagine that!” The Grandmaster mused with a smug grin on his face. His blue make-up looked even more ridiculous today and you were beyond grateful Loki only settled for yellow accents on his clothing instead of painting his face with body paint as well.

“Well, I will be right back. We always take a short break before the final fight.”

Relieved, you watched the crazy old man getting up and leaving the VIP lounge, his yellow cloak flattering behind him. All of his guests made space for him to pass, making you shake your head in disbelief. Finally, you allowed yourself to slide off of Loki’s lap, still, however, kept so close to him your legs were touching.

“You think they have a bathroom here somewhere?”

The God of Mischief rolled his eyes. “Really, now? Can’t that wait?”

“Not exactly. I don’t have the bladder of a god, unfortunately.” You spared him from threatening you would actually piss on him if you didn’t find a toilet.

“Fine,” he spat. He wasn’t angry with you—that you would have known. Much more did you feel like a motherless little girl he had to babysit.

He never let go of your arm when you stepped into the hallway full of oddly dressed people. Scrappers were rushing through, accompanied by the gladiators who had been spared of tonight’s contest and, much to your dismay, new contenders they had snatched for a handful of coins.

Another lost soul caught and sold as a doll, his short hair wild and stubby. He moaned in pain when one of the scrappers buried his shoe in his stomach, the blue obedience disk, which you had learned were attached to all of the Grandmaster’s slaves, ready to stun him. Turning his head, his blue eyes roamed around defencelessly in the hopes of support, help or a way out.

The Grandmaster, appearing beside you both enthusiastically, clapped his hands. “Ah, Loki, look, there he is! If he proves to be as skilled as you promised, you will be greatly rewarded.”

Your hand flew up to cover your mouth when you recognised his face. It was Thor.

Chapter Text

“Loki…” Panicking, you turned to him and grabbed his arm, frantically shaking it. “Loki, what is…”

The God of Mischief pressed his lips together tightly. His brother had not spotted him yet and Loki made no advances whatsoever to help him out of his risky misery.

“I doubt he can beat my beloved champion but if he does… I will double your bounty.” The Grandmaster continued with a satisfied grin.

What? Your lips parted in shock as you began to tremble. Double his bounty?

Snarling, the scrappers dragged Thor around the corner until he was out of sight. He was barely conscious now and without his hammer… you had seen men made of stone today. What if…? Your sorrow for him was different from your fear of losing Loki but still, you were worried Thor might not survive this.

What had gone wrong? How had he been caught? Had Loki… not supplied him with access codes after all? When he had winked at you… he hadn’t exactly told you a lie but…

“Loki, what is all of this?!” You winced, keeping your voice low to not raise the Grandmaster’s suspicion. He was still close, talking to his most faithful Topaz.

“The reward for his capture will set me up nicely,” he answered equally quiet. Forgotten was your urge to pee. Loki had betrayed his own brother, again. He might as well stab you in the chest.

“I have told him I would want to stay here on Sakaar. I have already risked my life once and for what? Hela is more powerful than ever. It is about time Thor too realises that Asgard is lost.”

“You told me you were going to help him! You promised me you were gonna bring me home!” You yelled, your composure forgotten as hot tears worsened your sight and made you forget everything around you, the God of Mischief turning into a black dot before you.

“Shhh!” Loki hissed quietly.

“You lied to me.” You whispered, crying freely now. With a start, you remembered what he had told you the night you had asked him about his brother’s mission.

“What changed your mind?”

“A very interesting conversation,” he had replied and you, naïve and stupid, had believed he meant the conversation he had held with you, instead… instead he had been talking about his ridiculous chat with the Grandmaster.

“You are a fool if you thought I would not.” Loki said severely, his blue gaze never leaving yours. Sobbing, you wiped a few of your tears from your cheeks, noticing with dismay that your black make-up had smeared. You were a mess. A complete and utter mess. How could you have been so blind?

Why, it was almost funny! You knew what they all said about Loki, knew of all the warnings they whispered to each other and yet, you had blindly let your feelings get the better of you. Feelings that, and this was the worst part, paired with devastating disappointment, had not changed in the slightest.

You still longed to be with this man, despite his betrayal. Despite the fact he had let you down. Knowing this caused even more salty tears to run down your cheeks and paint dirty streaks of black coal onto your skin.

“What about me?” You muttered breathlessly.

“I am sorry.”

Was he really? Sorry? Perhaps he was. Be careful what you wish for, your mother always said. You had wanted to be with Loki… and now you were going to be stuck with him on a strange planet, enjoying the reputation of a mere and silly pleasure slave for the rest of your life.

“Take me back to your apartment,” you begged, facing the ground as you did. Meeting his blue eyes—his beautiful blue eyes—again right now… it would tear you apart. “I don’t want to stay here.”

Loki slightly shook his head. “We cannot leave now. I placed a large wager against Thor. The Grandmaster counts on my presence.”

“Then bring me back and enjoy the rest of this ridiculous and brutal show alone!” This time, the Grandmaster turned his head. Whether he had heard your exact words, you did not know but even if he did, Loki would talk his way out of it. He always did, after all. The famous silver tongue that deceived them all… including you.

“Your slave is raising her voice against you? Tsk,” Topaz shook her head in a disgusted manner. “Perhaps you didn’t train her as well as you thought you have.”

Loki gave her an embarrassed smile. “Maybe not,” he muttered under his breath. It was then you scoffed and kicked him in the shin, eliciting a silent grunt from him—your second mistake.

Tilting his head threateningly, he narrowed his blue eyes at you and then jerked you forward by wrapping his hand firmly around your upper arm. It hurt. You could already feel the bruises forming as he dragged you through the hallway, making sure the Grandmaster and Topaz saw how he treated you in response to your boldness. You didn’t blame him for it; they didn’t know the truth—to them, it had to seem like Loki was angry at you for your actions when in reality… you were angry with his.

“You promised!” You bellowed as soon as he had closed the vast door forming the entrance to his apartment. “You promised you would get me home! Do you have any idea how homesick I am? What it means for me to be stranded here? I’m all alone, nobody understands me and all Thor cares about is overpowering that stupid goddess of death!”

“I know!” Loki yelled back, leaning forward slightly. You had never seen him this agitated. “I saw you crying the day we left for Helheim, (Y/N)!”

You wanted to strangle him. I will make sure to keep an eye on you. He thought you were desperate to get away from here. You were, of course… but Loki saw only half the picture. He was as blind as you. Blind enough to betray you.

“You promised.” You repeated, your voice shaking. “You promised me!!!”

Electricity shocks were rippling through your body, rational brain cells exploding and shattering to a million pieces—just like your heart. A desperate scream escaped your lips when you bolted forward, throwing wild and uncontrolled punches at him.

Breathing heavily, you clenched your fists, swinging at his chest repeatedly. Again, again, again and again until Loki snatched your wrists and forced you to think.

You traded your boiling wrath with fresh tears as fast as the numbing anger had come over you. Next thing you knew, your cheek collided with his body as you wrapped your arms around him, crying rivers against his muscly body.

Maybe he just couldn’t help himself? Maybe this was what he was? Constantly condemned to live up to his mischievous reputation? His arms around you were soothing. For a couple of minutes, you just stood there in silence as he stroked over your hair and held you tightly, comforting you.

His embrace was so calming. Just like the day you had woken up in his hug, you couldn’t believe this was the man who had brought death and destruction over New York—or the man who had sold his own brother as a gladiator.

What was happening to you? How could you forgive him? Were you… were you really in love? Loki had disappointed you and here you were, clinging onto him as if your life depended on it.

“You’re all I have left,” you sobbed out of breath, your own words scaring you shitless when you spoke them out loud and you realised… they were true. You trusted Loki. “Don’t let me down.”

The God of Mischief sighed—surprised and taken aback by your vulnerable confession and for the first time in the history of humanity… he didn’t know what to say.

He settled for a simple, gentle “Go to sleep, little minx.”

“You’ll leave if I do.”

“I have to go back. But I promise I will join you later.” There it was again. I promise.

Taking a deep breath, you fought the last of your tears and wiped your cheeks to dry them. “How can I believe you?”

You knew the answer of course. You couldn’t. You had to. You had no other choice.

“Have I not kept you safe?” Loki finally said. His dark voice was but a whisper, yet every single sound that escaped his lips cursed through your body like adrenaline. All you managed was a nod in response. He was caressing you with a tender gaze—his blue eyes sparkling—when you finally pulled away and started at the bed as calmly and composed as you could muster.

Loki watched until you had slid under the covers as if to make sure you did as you were told, then, with a final nod and one last, thoughtful look, he left the apartment.


The sleepless night announced itself by the clock striking midnight. Sighing sadly, you shifted on the soft mattress and buried yourself under the covers, missing Loki’s warmth next to you, his arms around your waist, keeping any harm away from you.

He still hadn’t returned, your twisted thoughts imagining him drinking, dancing and celebrating with a bunch of beautiful young women the Grandmaster paid to seduce him. Real pleasure slaves that would actually satisfy his… primal needs. Like a lightning bold, the image of Valkyrie kissing him returned to you and struck you like a painful slap in the face.

You’d much rather willingly become his whore if only it meant you would never have to see something like that ever again.

Another sigh escaped your lips as you turned to the other side to hug Loki’s pillow. It smelled like him—leather, firewood and molten metal—and if you closed your eyes tightly… you could imagine it was actually him.

It was then you heard a silent “psss”, followed by a creaking door. Loki? Was he back? Why would he… hiss?

“(Y/N)? Are you here?” Valkyrie breathed.

Chapter Text

“What the hell are you doing here?“ Sleepily, you sat up and drowsily glared into the darkness around you before switching on the lamp on the nightstand. Greenish light filled the room.

“Thor got captured.” She stated dryly, crossing her strong arms before her chest. You don’t say. “They found us—him. They found him. Whatever you do, tell Loki not to return to the plane wreck, they are still searching the area for more stowaways. I have no idea how they found us, they’re all usually very dull… something must have given us away. Or a routine inspection, what the hell do I know what orders Topaz yells around when the Grandmaster is not around.”

Willing to explain her you knew exactly how the scrappers had found him, you opened your mouth only to close it again the fraction of a second after. Don’t betray him like he had, a soft voice whispered in your head, making you dizzy.

“Anyway, I’m gonna get him out of there.” She continued with an arrogant smile. “So as soon as you see Loki, tell him to meet me in the arena’s mainframe tomorrow at noon.”

Gasping for air, you grabbed the bedpost. This was ridiculous. Valkyrie was here to help Thor and there you were, struggling with yourself and downright refusing to tell her how the God of Thunder had ended up as a gladiator in the first place. Granted, the fact you hated the woman before you with a passion made it a lot easier, especially after how she had treated Loki. And now you were defending him yet again. You were getting a headache from this.

“Will you tell him?!” Valkyrie repeated impatiently. You simply nodded in response, watching with relief how she took her leave again. You had no idea how she had made it into the apartment in the first place but that you didn’t even want to know. As of now, you had much more difficult and complicated problems that you needed to attend to.

There were only two options. One, you let Valkyrie rescue Thor so he could save Asgard and get you home eventually or two, you could support your ridiculous feelings for Loki and tell him the Valkyrie had a plan, that she had broken into his apartment in the middle of the night, hoping for his help and accepting that you would never return home. No. There was a third option too. What if Loki brought you back to Earth?


Thrashing, you opened your eyes, clawing at your attacker. There was someone covering your mouth to prevent you from screaming, their raven hair hanging into your face and their blue eyes… their blue eyes instantly ready to take you back to the place of your wildest dreams. Loki.

“What do you think you are doing?!” You shrieked when he finally released you, placing your palm on your chest to feel your rapid heartbeat. “You scared me. Why don’t you just wake me up like mortal beings would?” It wasn’t a question, yet he answered with a smirk.

“Because I am not mortal… Get up now, little minx. It is time for your training.”

Training?! Millions of questions tumbled through your head like dominos when you rose from the bed, noticing with dismay you were wearing nothing but your underwear. It had been too inconvenient, sleeping with a dress, so you had taken it off.

“Training? What are you talking about?”

Loki raised his eyebrows. “I promised to teach you how to fight—and I will keep my promise.”

“Is this why you agreed to teach me in the first place? Because I knew that I would have to be able to handle myself when you betray your brother and cut off my only chance of getting away from this planet?”

The God of Mischief paused. For just a split second, a sad shimmer was visible in his beautiful blue eyes but it vanished when you blinked.

“I have told you why I did what I have done, (Y/N). Going back would be suicide. For Thor, for me and especially for you. Hela would crush you like an ant.”

If only… if only you knew… if he really liked you. Ignoring the flattering of your heart, you bit your lower lip and stood before him, uncaring of how you were barely dressed. Loki’s curious gaze drifted over your entire form for a moment before focusing on your face.

He had kept you safe. He could have gotten rid of you, he could have had you killed or sold you as a pleasure slave to the Grandmaster… but he hadn’t. You were still incredibly thankful for everything he had done for you, still unconditionally in love with him but ever since yesterday… ever since yesterday you kept questioning every single one of his actions, every heartbeat and every little breath.

You didn’t understand it. Did you want to stay here with him? Yes. Did you want to go home? Yes. Did you want to trust Loki? Yes. Did you know it was absurd to do so? Yes. So why was it all so complicated?

“Loki, I just… I’m scared.”

“I told you I would not leave you here all by yourself.” Your heart skipped a beat, the butterflies in your stomach going crazy.

“It’s not that… I’m… I’m scared of you. I want to believe you, I want to trust you, you have proven me that you care, that you don’t… but… but how do I know you won’t just vanish one day? Or change your mind about me and sell me as well?” Tears welled up in your eyes, threatening to crush your windpipe. “And what’s even worse is that even though I want to go home, I…” Startled, you stopped yourself, stumbling over your own words. To Loki it seemed you were fighting hard not to cry when in reality it was keeping yourself from saying I also want to be with you.

Loki never ceased to impress you. He pursed his lips slightly, then lifted his hand to cup your cheek. Lost in thought, his thumb traced the cut Valkyrie’s knife had caused. Gently. Softly. Your lips parted.

You didn’t want to focus on his lips but… they were distracting, inviting and suddenly, telling Loki, or, not telling Loki about Valkyrie became all but insignificant. What you desired to do instead…

“You cannot trust me,” he suddenly said sternly, interrupting your erotic thoughts and dragging yourself back to reality, the problems at hand. “Never. But I always keep my promises, little minx.”

All you managed to do was nod in response, still numbed by his palm touching your face. His eyes were hypnotising, just like boarding a ship and then gaping down at the countless waves capturing you with their beauty.

“Valkyrie was in your apartment last night.” You suddenly heard yourself admitting. All of this—whatever this was—had one giant catch. You did trust Loki even if doing the exact opposite promised more chance of survival. “She is trying to break Thor out.” You continued.

With the God of Mischief this close… you weren’t even sure if you actually wanted to return to Earth in the first place anyway. No, of course you wanted to. Or you didn’t. You… you didn’t understand yourself. If you returned to Earth, you would never see this man—god—again. Would your love for him fade? Were you even allowed to call it love yet?

“Did she hurt you?” Taken aback, you felt your jaw drop.

“I-I, n-no, she didn’t. She… asked me to tell you to meet her. She… doesn’t know it was you who… you know.”

“When? And where?”

Finally, he let go of your cheek and instead wrapped his hands around your bare arms. A shiver went up and down your spine.

“Today, at noon, in the arena’s mainframe.”

“What is it she is planning?” Loki was being persistent, frantic even. It felt strange to see him like that.

“She didn’t say, Loki.” You tried soothingly. Only then did you realise that Thor had probably no idea it was his own brother who had turned him in and neither, so you knew, did Valkyrie. You were the only one.

“Loki… does Thor know that you betrayed him?”

The God of Mischief shook his head. “He might… suspect it. But he doesn’t know.”

“If he hopes that you will come to rescue him in vain, that’s even worse, Loki!”

“Is it?” The God of Mischief replied quietly, his blue eyes focusing on the back of your hand. You had started scratching it again. “The Grandmaster wishes to have breakfast with us. Get dressed, after we will continue your training.”

“Loki, I don’t have anything to wear.”

Smirking, he tilted his head before waving his hand, impressing you once more with a shimmer of green magic. Next thing you knew, you were wearing dark green pants complimenting your thighs and a comfortable bustier, both pieces of clothing decorated with black ribbons sewn into them. When you looked down, you spotted Loki’s symbol—his golden helmet—embroidered in the fabric.

You resisted the urge to roll your eyes, if anything because your lips parted in awe. The outfit was incredible.

“Thank you.”

Loki nodded.

“Then let’s go.”

Chapter Text

Right after breakfast and a few really uncomfortable questions on the Grandmaster’s behalf, you were finally free to go again. Loki wasted no time in leading you out of the giant and colourful building unnoticed, returning to the plane wreck to train with you.

“Do you really think it’s a good idea for us to come here? I mean, the scrappers…”

“I have concealed us. None of them is going to even hear us.”

You had no idea how he managed to keep up this much magic all the while focusing on not getting kicked by you but then again, you were hardly difficult to overwhelm.

Although Loki had been right—you did not make the same mistakes all over again. He was, naturally, still a lot smarter, stronger and faster than you but you improved. You improved so much that by the second half of your training, when the sun had almost reached its highest point in the grey sky, he handed you one of his daggers and commanded you to attack him.

Shrugging a little doubtful, you obeyed.

One, two, three steps and he had disarmed you again. Four, five, six steps and he had pressed you against the corpus of the plane and threatened to slice your throat with your own weapon.

He was dangerously close. Stunned, you could feel his hot and moist breath against your lips, his panting the only thing you were still able to hear. Your flustered gaze automatically wandered to his thin lips, tempted to touch them with your own.

“Let go of me…” You whispered, your voice barely audible as you struggled a little in a weak attempt to break free. In response, Loki shifted his entire body weight on you, making it impossible for you to escape.

Smirking mischievously, he tilted his head in a mocking manner.

“If you let your opponent force you into a corner, you have already lost. You cannot expect of them to let go of you again either.”

“G-great, so what do I do?” You swallowed thickly, feeling each and every one of his muscles tensing against your barely covered skin. You were sweating again, the tips of your hair a little wet and your cheeks reddened from the effort. Compared to Valkyrie, not exactly attractive. If only you could move your arms to just wrap your arms around his neck, bury your fingers in his raven hair and kiss him until he dropped that stupid dagger to make love to you, right there on the ground—well, maybe at least on one of the old leather seats inside of the plane wreck…

“You may hope I shall be merciful, little minx.” He breathed, his smirk widening. What he did then scared you a lot more than the pointy blade of his dagger, for suddenly, he let go of your hip to brush a strand of your hair out of your face, his cool fingers gently grazing your cheek.

Your lips parted.

“It is almost noon.” He uttered quietly. Peeking briefly at the sun, you nodded. Valkyrie!

“What are you gonna do?”

Loki smirked.

“I will sabotage her ship and foil her little plan. That will buy us some time.”

“Time for what?”

“My brother will not give up until he has found a way out of here. Sooner or later, he will be back asking me for help.”

“And then you will do what?” You began, hopeful.

“You are asking too many questions, little minx. Keep training. I shall pick you up later.” And with that, he disappeared, the only evidence of his presence the invisible charm he kept above you to keep you safe. Something had happened. Something he had found out or gotten confronted with yesterday. Loki was restless—but you knew of course he wouldn’t share his concerns with you.

Picking up his dagger, you got into the position to throw. There wasn’t really much else to do anyway.


Sizzling through the air, the blade sliced through the thin piece of metal, making you nod triumphantly. Your hard work was finally showing some success—or maybe Loki was just a good teacher. It was probably the latter.

Your arm was hurting again by the time you took a short break and sat down on the ground, playing with Loki’s dagger in your hands.

He hadn’t answered your question and although you did not doubt he was going to do what he told you about foiling Valkyrie’s plans (your ego cheering at the thought), you kept wondering what his next move was going to be. There was no way he would finally speak up and tell you clearly whether he was going to bring you home or not—even if right now, you felt like your precious hope was shrinking.

Sighing, you examined the back of your hand. Still full of scratches from your very own nails, some of it freshly healed, others still bleeding a little when touched them.

What had that been just then? Him tucking a streak of your hair behind your ear like you were a cherished lover? The way his blue eyes had glanced at you… was it wrong to pretend he was into you too? Hell, you couldn’t even tell if he was annoyed by your presence, after all… but no. You had talked about this yesterday. Loki could have sold you to the Grandmaster as well, especially after learning he was so fond of you. He hadn’t.

An indignant laugh mixed with an absurd scoff escaped your lips. You wanted to hug him again. It was true. You wanted to hug your God of Mischief and tell him it was alright, that you still loved him.

“I love you,” you whispered out loud, testing the words. You had never used them on a man before. Your parents, best friends and pets, yes but never a man. It felt… strange, unusual but if it did anything, it proved you one thing—it also felt right.

Well… back to training. That way, you wouldn’t have to worry if it was too early to even think about those three words. A little clumsily, you rose from your sitting position and turned around, only to feel your heart sink to the very bottom of your body.

“Well, well, well… if it isn’t Loki’s precious little slave.”

Scrappers. The very same scrappers that had picked you up and dragged you to the Grandmaster last time. Shit.

Clutching your dagger tighter, you recalled what Loki had taught you. If you let your opponent force you into a corner, you have already lost. Keep your balance. Never give up on your weapon.

His smooth voice sounded like an echo in your head—only your body failed to react.

“Haven’t been too honest with us, now have you? Where’s your king now, huh?” One of them snarled.

What on Earth had happened to the concealment charm?

“If you even think about touching me, Loki will rip you apart.”

“Oh yeah? Not if I kill him first. Is it true what the Grandmaster says about you? That you know damn well how to give head? I’d like to put that to the test.”

Panic flooded your veins, numbing your senses even more. Where was the adrenaline when you needed it? There were three of them and you only had one dagger… even if you did manage to stab the one in the middle, the other two would lunge at you before you even had a chance to make a run for it.

Loki, please, where are you?!

Last time he had left, he had promised to keep an eye on you with magic. Was he watching you now, too? Was he already on his way to aid you? Did he care? What if he wanted to see if you heeded what he had taught you about fighting thus far? Was he mad?! You were far away from being ready to handle three scrappers all by yourself!

“Loki! Loki, help me! Loki!!!” You bellowed, your throat burning. Not once in your life had you needed the full capacity of your vocal chords this much. You screamed until you hoarsened, the scrappers, who were now slowly approaching you, grinning dirtily.

“Get behind me.” My saviour. Relieved, you let out a breath you didn’t realise you were holding. Loki’s voice was right behind you.

Glaring at the scrappers threateningly, his heavy breathing intimidated not only them but also you when he pushed you behind his back for you to be shielded.

“You allowing her runs once in a while or what? You should be careful, others might take advantage of the opportunity.”

The daggers appeared in his hands the moment the first scrapper lunged at him. Loki’s fist hit him unprepared, the fraction of a second after, he had already rammed his dagger into his stomach, causing a bleeding wound as he fell to the ground with a painful moan.

The second scrapper attacking was smarter. Gnashing his teeth and hissing like a snake, he attempted to throw one of those obedience disks at Loki, who simply dodged it with the blade of his dagger. He threw it effortlessly and hit him right in the throat. He as well slumped to the ground, the blood drowning the dirty ground beneath him. Simultaneously, Loki plunged his other dagger into the last scrapper’s chest. He had barely fallen to the ground when he pounced on him, holding on to him for dear life. Loki simply kicked him off.

Your heart was beating like a steam hammer when the God of Mischief wrapped his arms around you and pulled you close, realising with horror on his face that you had started crying. When, you did not know, only that your tears were wetting your cheeks and staining Loki’s black leather armour, your ugly sobbing echoing through the air.

“I’m sorry,” he whispered into the curtain of your hair, his grip tightening even more as a loud sigh escaped his lips. He was… apologising? For what? For leaving you here all alone? For getting you into this situation?

All you managed to do in response was pressing your face against his muscly chest and closing your eyes shut until your tears had dried and he gently pushed you an arm-length away from him. Compassion was glistening in his eyes and with it… with it what felt like care.

“Let’s go.”

You followed him back to his apartment mutely, his hand never letting go of your wrist. Tenderly, he led you back into the Grandmaster’s house and through the endless hallways straight to his bedroom. Only when he had finally seated you on the bed, he mustered you in a scrutinising manner and spoke again.

“Did they harm you?”

He didn’t believe you the first time you shook your head.

“I promise. Loki, I’m okay, I’m just… it’s the shock, I guess. I’m not exactly used to life-threatening situations every now and then.”

The God of Mischief smiled. “You will get used to them rather quickly. Rest a little. I will be back shortly.”

He was going to leave you alone again? No! Panic flooded your veins along with stinging fear clawing at your guts.

“Please, no… don’t go. Loki, please, don’t leave me alone now.  Lie with me? Please?” It was the first time you acted on your feelings—towards him, that was and if he realised what your actions built on, he did not let on. Instead, he sighed once more, his lips pressed together to a thin line.

After what felt like a full minute, he finally moved and relaxed on the mattress, allowed you to cuddle up against him on the bed. Whether it was an instinct for you to seek his closeness? His presence was soothing you. You needed to know.

“Loki? Will you answer me one question? Will you bring me home?”

The God of Mischief sighed.

“I will.” And you believed him.

This man was no monster. If anything, Loki possessed a broken heart he barely ever showed. But he had to you and you were so honoured you felt new tears welling up in your eyes and worsening your sight as you hugged him tightly and attempted to calm your heart beat.

Silence spread in the room and for the first time, you considered telling him about your feelings.

“Loki… I…”

It was the Grandmaster’s voice that foiled your plan.

“Loyal Sakaarians, Lord of Thunder has stolen my ship and my favourite champion. Sakaarians, take to the skies. Bring him down. Do not let him leave this planet!”

Loki growled. “For Valhalla’s sake, Thor…

Chapter Text

“What’s happening?” Loki shot up from the bed, with you almost falling out of it in the process. Grumbling, you got on your feet as well, crossing your arms as a sudden chill washed over your body like an ice cold wind.

“You heard the Grandmaster. Thor has escaped.”

“That was… quick? I thought you stopped Valkyrie!”

The God of Mischief glared at you, angered as he tilted his head. “That is what I have thought too. That stupid oaf is going to get himself killed.”

He cared. He cared after all. Biting your lower lip unsure of what to do, you relinquished saying another word as Loki started pacing up and down the colourfully furnished room.

“Where did he even get the access codes from?”

“From me. He was never supposed to make it this far.”

You frowned. “Then why didn’t you just give him false codes?”

Loki glared at you. He was impressed.

“I will go talk to the Grandmaster.” He decided sternly, stopping dead in his tracks. “I was the one who sold Thor as a champion, if I don’t go sweet-talking him now, he will blame me. The last thing we need right now is running out of favour with him.” We.

You opened your mouth and took a deep breath. Words never came. He was right. If the Grandmaster punished Loki for causing him this much trouble, things would not end well.

“I need to take care of this right now. Come on.”

Your eyes widened. “What?”

“The Grandmaster has taken a considerable liking into you. You need to come with me, it will be easier for me to persuade him if you are present to bat your eyelashes at him.”

Several seconds passed until you were done blinking blankly at him, your face distorting in a disgusted manner. Joining him at the Grandmaster’s side meant another gracious portion of humiliation. Perhaps it wasn’t a good idea to tell Loki you were in love with him, after all.

The Grandmaster was furious. Upset, to say the least. Harshly, he gave Loki a long harangue before deciding he would let him speak up as well.

“Grandmaster, I cannot phrase with words how terribly sorry I am about this incident. If you gave me twenty-four hours, I could bring them both back to you alive.”

“Alone? Loki!” The Grandmaster began tauntingly. “Sakaar is big. But! Loki, Loki, Loki…” The Grandmaster pointed his finger at him. “You can redeem yourself. I like you—and I pardon you.” Pausing, he gave him a seductive look.

“I want her.” He said, turning to you and making you stop breathing altogether. This was it. Now he would sell you as well to save himself. Fighting back your tears, you attempted to calm your rapidly beating heart as panic flooded your veins. “Lend her to me. One orgy is all it will take for my girls to—“

“Absolutely not,” Loki interrupted, staring at him sternly. Your eyes widened. He sounded intimidating. Nervously, you began scratching your hand. He noticed the movement out of the corners of his eyes and when he grabbed your wrist to make you stop, you glanced up in surprise and awe.

“I have told you before, Grandmaster, that I can offer you your weight in gold—Asgard has uncountable treasures. This girl, however, is mine. I believe to have told you that I do not share.”

“That is a pity…” The Grandmaster pouted, nodding his head approvingly. “Loki, Loki… do you really want the main actor of a public execution? I would consider—”

“Grandmaster—“

“Hey, hey, don’t interrupt me! Loki, I will not—“

But he was interrupted yet again when suddenly, the entire wall broke down, debris and pieces of rock flying through the air. Flinching with a scream, you jumped to your right only to bump right into Loki, clinging onto him as if he was a piece of floating wood in the sea.

There was a ship in the giant hall you all stood in, the guards going wild, drawing their guns and shooting aimlessly at the metal in the hopes of hitting the culprits.

“Oops, sorry!” Thor screamed.

Loki rolled his eyes. He was all but unaffected, yet also not surprised. “Out of the two of us, he has never been the better pilot, let me tell you this.” He murmured. It was then the Thunderer spotted his brother lurking in front of the Grandmaster’s wrath.

“Loki! Over here! Loki!” With but a few blows, he knocked out the guards approaching and trying to overpower him and was quickly followed by Valkyrie. She was all but delighted to see Loki seemingly joining their risky mission, after all, but she did not protest when the God of Mischief shot you a warning glare and then lifted you off the ground to help you climb on the spaceship. A yellow and red beast, its insides utterly empty.

What the…? And what now? Would he stay behind? The Grandmaster would kill him—he was already screaming bloody murder. He couldn’t possibly…

“Loki!” You yelled, your expression so anxious Thor frowned at you in confusion.

You felt relief washing over your body when Loki jumped on the spaceship as well, abandoning the Grandmaster, his creepy public execution thoughts and this spooky planet—right towards the Devil’s anus and to Asgard, a realm you had only admiringly read of in books.

Just now, he had made a choice. He was going to help, he was going to join Thor. Loki wasn’t evil. Never. The way he had looked at you before lifting you onto the spaceship… so hopeful. Was it dangerous to believe it?

Panting, you leaned against the metal wall, clutching your chest as if you feared a heart attack. If anything, it was a panic attack rising in your body and teasing you relentlessly but before you could even reach for your hand and scratch your wounds open yet again, Loki started at Thor like an angry berserker.

“What do you think are you doing here?”

“Escaping!” The God of Thunder screamed, amusement present on his face.

“The Grandmaster possesses at least two dozen battleships, all of them flown by even twice as much guards and soldiers! They will catch us, or even worse, shoot us out of the sky before we can even make it out of the city!” Loki was furious—no, he was… actually flustered.

“Nope, they won’t. They’ll be busy. I kind of started a revolution on my way out.” Thor responded, avoiding a few gunshots. The sudden movement of the ship had you crash into Loki once more.

The God of Mischief rolled his eyes—not at you, however. When he noticed you holding on to him, he simply wrapped an arm around your waist to keep you steady. Your heart was beating even faster now.

“And now what? You will march into Asgard and ask Hela for ceasefire?”

“By the time we’re done with her, she will be the one asking for ceasefire, I can promise you that.” Frowning, you turned your head. This voice was new. It belonged to a middle-aged man, a scientist, you knew. This was Bruce Banner—the Hulk and one of the Avengers! How on Earth had he ended up on Sakaar?

“So,” he continued, glaring daggers at Loki. “Last time I saw you, you were trying to kill everybody. Where’re you at these days?”

“It varies from moment to moment.” He growled, his dark and threatening voice sending shivers up and down your spine.

Was this why Loki had been so uneasy after returning from the contest of champions? You remembered hearing on the news the Hulk had beaten him up after his unsuccessful New York invasion. It all made sense now.

“Thor told me about you, you must be (Y/N)?” Bruce asked then, offering his hand. You took it with a smile, nodding in the process. This was crazy. Only a few weeks ago you had never thought you’d even meet one Avenger and now two of them knew your name already.

“How exactly did you get here?”

“It’s a long story, really. There were some, um, complications.” If anything, he sounded a lot more insecure than you had initially assumed he would be but when he shot Valkyrie a secret glance, you realised with a start she did not know he occasionally turned into a giant green monster. It’s alright. I can shut up.

“’A few complications’ is a nice way to put it. Stealing the ships would have been a lot easier if you hadn’t gotten caught.” Valkyrie snarled, not quite angry but still annoyed. “How did they find you anyway? Those scrappers are usually as thick as bread.”

“Maybe because of the stolen ships the Grandmaster commanded for the area to be searched for more stowaways,” you tossed in, shrugging lightly in the process.

Loki gave you a startled look, his expression clueless. What was this supposed to be? You were vouching for Loki. It almost scared you how right it felt. Your own safety must be the only reason for you to do it. Any other option would be plain ridiculous… right? You could practically feel the trouble inside of him, that painstaking unease of not being able to wrap his finger around something. You resisted the urge to reach for his hand. Only Banner noticed the twitch of your hand towards him.

“Now?” Loki began then. “Are you going to tell me how you managed to escape?”

“I told you, I started a revolution. The gladiators I was locked in with are on the way to the ship hangar right now. They should be—look, there they are!”

There was another spaceship zooming right past you, big, black and a lot more impressive than the orange monstrosity you were in and distracting a few of the Grandmaster’s forces.

“They are not heading for the Devil’s Anus.”

“No, they’re not, they’re heading for freedom.”

“Thor, we might need them.” Loki said. His expression said it all—he was cursing his brother for not planning this heroic escape more precisely.

Valkyrie raised her eyebrows. “For what?”

“Do you truly think Hela will be facing us alone?”

“She has an army,” Thor added, nodding approvingly. “Loki is right.”

“So what do we do?”

The God of Mischief smiled cheekily. “I have a plan.” A plan. Loki’s plans were usually risky. Where did this sudden urge to help Thor come from? Was he feeling regret for selling him?

“Don’t take too long brother.”

“You’re going to leave?” You chirped.

“You stay here,” he started, adding a warning glare to his tone. When you still took a step forward, Loki took a deep breath. “Do not tempt me, little minx.”

But will you come back? You didn’t dare to ask. Instead, you simply nodded bravely and formed the words with your eyes.

“Be careful.”

The God of Mischief nodded, handing you one of his shiny daggers with a warning glare. Then, with a green shimmering light and a reckless jump right out of the spaceship, he was gone.

Chapter Text

It felt good to have another human around. Banner might be a mutation at some point but at least, he was from Earth as well.

You were cowering in a corner, talking to Bruce all the while Thor and Valkyrie steered the ship right towards Asgard. Your fingers never ceased to play with the dagger Loki had given you to protect yourself. It posed a great distraction to not scratch the back of your hand either. He knew about that too, so you figured.

“So… how did you end up here?”

“I’m not exactly sure. I just… woke up and suddenly there’s Thor telling me I’ve been the Hulk for two years, working as a gladiator for that lunatic.”

Nodding, you faced the ground. It must be terrible, your mind being compressed like that.

“What about you?”

“One of my best friends was killed when Hela attacked Thor and Loki on Earth. I kind of… got dragged into all of it and now… I’m just trying to survive this, I guess.”

“I’m sorry.”

“Thank you.”

Silence spread and for a while, only the roaring sounds of the space ship were audible, hovering in the air loudly.

“So, you and Loki, huh?” Banner suddenly said then. “How did this happen?”

“Excuse me?”

“You and Loki? Madly in love?” What? How would he even know?

“I-I’m… I’m not…” You stuttered.

“I saw the way you looked at him before he left. (Y/N), I have seven PhDs, I think I can tell when someone has feelings for another.”

Your eyes widened in pure horror.

“Don’t you dare tell anyone. Please. It’s bad as is.”

“Quite right you are. Loki is a criminal.”

“He’s a lot more than you concede to him.” You spat, a wave of anger washing over you.

Banner only snorted. “Does anyone else know?”

Frowning, you leaned back. “Of course not. Loki himself doesn’t know. I tried to tell him, once… but it’s probably a bad idea. I mean, I’m just me.”

Banner shot you an unbelieving look.

“Will you… will you tell Thor?”

“No,” Bruce reassured gently, shaking his head in the process. “I can keep a secret.”

“Thank you.”

Once more, silence spread between the two of you, with you hugging your knees and wondering if Loki was alright. Your heart skipped a beat when Thor spoke up.

“Guys… we’re here.”

Both Bruce and you jumped up, filled with both excitement and nervousness. The vast view of the planet before you, with the gushing waterfalls, the sparkling rainbow bridge and the golden palace towering high up into the sky… it was simply breath-taking and this… this was the place Loki had grown up in? It would be beyond wonderful—if it weren’t for that evil witch attempting to take over the entire universe.

“What’s the plan?”

“Here, up in the mountains,” Valkyrie began, pointing at the console screen with a frown. “Heat signatures. People clustered together.”

“Asgardians?” You asked.

She nodded. “Hela’s coming for them.”

“Okay, drop me off at the palace and I’ll draw her away.” Your eyes widened. If Thor was going to face her alone, he might as well stab himself. For the first time, Valkyrie agreed with you.

“And get yourself killed?”

The Thunderer shook his head, his lips pursed tightly.

“The people trapped down there are all that matters. While I’m dealing with Hela, I need you two to help get everyone off Asgard. (Y/N), you stay with Valkyrie.” His flustered gaze wandered over to Loki’s dagger in your hands. “I don’t want you to get hurt.”

Nodding, you took a step back. Well, what else were you supposed to do? Flailing around defencelessly would hardly help the God of Thunder succeed and instead have you get killed yourself.

“Hang on, what do you mean, get everyone off Asgard? How the hell are we supposed to do that?” Bruce threw in agitatedly.

“Wait for Loki.” Thor answered severely. Breathing out slowly, you briefly closed your eyes. If only he knew Loki had been the one who to betray him in the first place. You were praying the God of Mischief would actually come back. It was a silly hope, really but if it wasn’t for his own brother, then maybe it was for you.

Valkyrie’s face distorted in a disgusted manner. “And then what?”

“If Odin could imprison Hela, then we can too.” Thor roared enthusiastically. He was right. They had Loki’s magic but… Hela was very powerful as well, you had seen her killing Susan. Gulping, forced the bloody image from your mind.

You watched them providing the spaceship with a proper weapon, witnessed mutely how Thor disappeared and asked for Valkyrie and Bruce to meet him on the bridge and then, how you took off again, hovering right above the Rainbow Bridge. A dark skinned man with orange glowing eyes led a vast group of people towards the Bifrost, determination plastered on his face. Was this Heimdall? The man who could see anything? He would know if Loki was fine. The urge to rush down and ask him grew, yet your rational thinking stopped you. Don’t be ridiculous.

You had no idea where Thor was. He had disappeared into the palace and now, faint battle cries were audible, sizzling through the air like poisonous gas.

Then you saw it. The giant wolf breathing heavily and cowering on the ground, ready to pounce. Saliva was dripping from his agape mouth, his growling loud enough to reach you safe up on the spaceship. You had considered the scrappers on Sakaar to be a danger but this… another panic attack fought to break free.

You had managed to go without them for so long but now, Loki was gone. No one was there to promise to keep you safe, no one was there to hug you. You threw a quick glance at Valkyrie. Absolutely not, you’d rather die than to tell her you were about to faint on her—especially when you first saw the numerous army Thor had spoken of. They were… dead. Skeletons, with green glowing holes for eyes and animalistic growling sounds instead of a human voice. Trembling, you stumbled back and sank down against the wall of the spaceship and while Valkyrie was still busy shooting at the giant wolf, Bruce shouted something at her and then… jumped. A scream escaped your lips but when you heard the Hulk yell and roar, you quickly calmed again.

“(Y/N), are you okay? We need to go down now.” Sneering, you nodded. That was by far the nicest thing she had ever said to you. Still, you said nothing when she stirred the spaceship towards the ground and finally landed it on the Rainbow Bridge.

Valkyrie instantly jumped off with her sword in hand, the fireworks going off again with the impact of her rather clumsy landing. And just like that, you were all alone, hiding behind the corner and glaring outside with your heart pounding like a steam hammer.

Heaven, what was happening here? Undead corpses, wolves straight from mythology, an evil goddess of death… how would anyone stand a chance to escape? Without—

You flinched when a strong wind ripped through your hair, accompanied by the ear-piercing rumbling of another spaceship—on it the gladiators Thor had helped to escape.

There was a man standing proudly at the entrance. His arms spread like those of a merciful angel.

“Your saviour is here!”

Just like that, his voice took a load off your mind. Your heart skipped a beat when you climbed off the spaceship and ran towards him as the Ark neared the bridge and allowed the God of Mischief to step out. He was wearing his helmet. His golden horned helmet that made you bite your lower lip—he looked incredibly handsome and… he had changed his armour too. Accented with green fabric, he had gone back to his typical colours. His cape fluttered behind him when he moved through the panicking crowd.

“Did you miss me?” Yes. Yes, so much. “Everybody, on that ship now!” He commanded sternly. You used your chance, wrestling your way through relieved Asgardians until you managed to reach for his hand.

Loki turned, alarmed, yet his expression softened when his blue gaze fell on you. You barely noticed Heimdall watching you holding hands for a moment that lasted way too long for him to consider you as just friends.

“Welcome home,” Heimdall started, nodding in his direction. “I saw you coming.”

“Of course you did.” Loki pursed his lips.

“Get on the ship and stay there until I come for you.” He whispered softly then. For a second it almost looked like he was going to cup your cheek again but he pulled away.

“But—“

Get on the ship, (Y/N).”

You gasped when he drew his daggers and ran straight towards the skeletons.

Chapter Text

Hidden in between two Asgardian teens, you flipped Loki’s dagger in your hand and kept peeking outside. He was gracious. You had seen him fight before but this… this was beyond impressive and although you knew Loki was closer to being invincible than anyone else could be in a battle, you feared for his life, flinching and jerking on the spot every single time he barely managed to dodge a deadly blow. One of the teens threw you a compassionate look.

You could hide here on this spaceship like a coward and have another panic attack… or you could go out there, make use of what Loki had taught you and fight with him.

Would that be wise? Would you be able to jump over your own shadow and defeat that little monster inside you, the one tossing you into numbing panic attacks? You couldn’t rely on Loki to protect you while he was busy saving his own arse. Those skeletons were merciless, yet the longer you watched the God of Mischief fight for his home planet, the more your own bravery grew.

Unceremoniously, you scattered away from your hiding spot. The Ark had not taken off yet, there were still people climbing on board. This was your chance. You slid off the ramp rather clumsily, your knee colliding with the hard ground. The Rainbow Bridge underneath your feet sparkled with the impact but there was no time to admire its beauty. Loki was only a few feet away, busy fighting off two skeletons at the very same time. There was another one behind him, growling angrily at him for killing its mates.

Focusing, you got in position. You can do this. Remember what Loki told you. When you threw the dagger, it sliced through the air like a samurai sword. Practising had paid off—the already dead soldier fell to the ground, his weapons falling to his feet with a loud clatter.

Loki turned on his heel. His reproachful look was both intimidating and arousing when he spotted you standing there only a few feet away from him.

“Did I not tell you to stay on the ship?!” He bellowed, hissing like a snake as he did.

“You did. Thank me later for saving your life.”

Loki rolled his eyes before boring his dagger into another skeleton. But then, with a start, he began to smirk and shake his head, causing electricity to curse through your veins and fill you with enough adrenaline to dodge one of Hela’s soldiers yourself and kick him in the guts. Loki’s teaching had paid off, after all.

“Look at you, little minx. You were but a terrified kitten when I first met you. Now you are a lioness.”

You were giggling. Giggling like a little school girl! Had Loki just complimented you? A lioness. He had called you a lioness. Biting your lower lip, you opened your mouth to reply, when suddenly, his face fell, startling you to the core.

He shot forward before you were able to react, his body forcing yours to the ground. You fell to the ground hard, the sparkling rainbow bridge beneath you almost cracking with the impact when you heard dozens of rocks tumbling to the very spot you had been standing in—Hela had driven swords into the Ark. Giant, massive blades which had torn them up in the water.

Gasping, you sought out his gaze. Now you were even.

He was hovering above you, his whole body covering yours. Running his fingers through your hair, his blue eyes locked with yours.

“T-thank you…” You breathed. Only mere inches separated his lips from yours, the whole world around you stopping. The noise of battle, explosion, weapons and devastated citizens melted to a dull background sound.

Kiss me, oh please… kiss me.

It was like he was bewitched, unable to draw away from you. Loki’s lips grazed yours in a desperate attempt to taste you, both of you captured in this bubble of emotions neither of you properly comprehended.

Kiss me… just kiss me!

Instead, another skeleton almost impaled him. “Loki, watch out!”

Breathing out loudly, he rolled you both over, missing the spear by only a foot.

“Get on the ship now!” He ordered again as he helped you back on your feet. Only this time you would listen. The Ark was attempting to take off, your magical moment was over and had cruelly been ripped from you.

Reality was slapping you in the face and awakening the adrenaline in your body once more. If you did not make it on the ship… you might not make it at all.

“Loki!” Pausing, he looked at you. “Be careful.” He nodded—then, he was gone again.

One of the Asgardians gladly helped you on board right before the pilot managed to free it from Hela’s swords to keep it from leaving.

Hopefully, Loki and the others would make it in time too.

Your fingers, absentmindedly, travelled to your lips to where Loki had touched them with his. He had wanted to kiss you. You had read it in his eyes—although he had not quite understood it himself, so it seemed, almost as if he did not comprehend his feelings for you. Did he have feelings for you? Or had it been the heat of the moment? Why was all of this so complicated?

You never noticed how your breathing grow heavier with every moment passing, not that an elder man lightly touched your shoulder to ask if you were alright—only that at some point, everything around you blackened.


When you woke up again, you felt a warm blanket wrapped around you tightly. Faint voices around you were talking to each other quietly, some of them relieved, others devastated and some tragically sad. Tediously, you opened your eyes to face a grey ceiling—the Ark! You were still on the spaceship. Had you had a panic attack, again? You cursed when you tried to stand. It took your body a while to regain its balance.

“You’re awake. Please, drink some water.” An elder woman with braids in her brown hair approached you with a sly smile, handing you a cup filled with water. You took it sheepishly, your fingers shaking a little in the process. Only now did you realise your hand was bandaged. She had to be a healer, presumably took care of the open wounds on the back of your hand. When you reached up to feel the cut on your cheek, there was nothing there either.

“What happened?” You creaked, your throat terribly dry. Quickly, you took a few sips, enjoying with relish how the cold water felt on your tongue.

“You fainted—all of this…” She motioned around her. “…it is much, I understand. I took care of your injuries. You are (Y/N), are you not? The human girl, you were with the princes.”

Nodding absentmindedly, you blushed, embarrassed by your ridiculous reaction. Panic attacks were one thing, you couldn’t exactly help them… but fainting like a little princess?

“At least we are safe. This is all that matters.”

Loki. Where was Loki? With your heart in your mouth, you thanked the healer for patching you up and then hurried out of the room back to the other Asgardians, ignoring her protest. You spotted the Hulk and Valkyrie among them, yet Thor or Loki were nowhere to be found.

“Valkyrie!” The dark-haired woman turned, her face darkening upon seeing you moving clumsily through the crowd. “Have you seen Thor? Is L—“

“East wing,” she interrupted you with a fake smile. Rolling your eyes, you disappeared again. Yes, you still hated that bitch.

Finding the east wing proved to be a lot harder than assumed though—where was east anyway? You were in bloody space!

When you finally reached a slim hallway with several metal doors leading to what you assumed to be bedrooms and en-suites, you tried the one that was open already, a small beam of light shining onto the metal floor.

“Thor?”

“(Y/N)!” Smiling weakly, the God of Thunder turned. He was wearing an eye patch.

“Your eye…?”

He simply shrugged it off. “It’s alright. How are you?”

“Thor… where is Loki?”

“He was in the vault when Surtur… I don’t know, (Y/N).”

When Surtur what? Who was Surtur? What had he done? I don’t know. Was he not on the ship?! Panic stroke your body like a tidal wave, your heart instantly speeding up to compete with a steam hammer.

“Tell me what happened. I blacked out, I… last thing I remember is that we took off and then… nothing.”

The Thunderer’s expression darkened. Resigned, he faced the metal ground when he spoke up again.

“Asgard was destroyed. We caused Ragnarok to stop Hela…”

“What happened to her? Is she…?”

“She is dead. Loki went to resurrect Surtur by putting his crown into the Eternal Flame, which Odin kept in the treasure vault…”

“And then?!” You shrieked. Thor frowned. You didn’t even care about him finding out about your true feelings for him, not right now, not anymore.

“He might have still been on the planet when it exploded.” There was something else he wanted to say but didn’t—probably only to spare you.

I don’t even know if he is still alive…

Shattered, you lost your balance once more. You leaned against the metal wall to keep yourself standing upright, fighting to keep your lower lip still all the while listening to your rapid panting.

“W-where is he?” Thor fell silent.

“I’m here.” Your heart jumped when you heard another, smooth and cheeky voice right behind you. Turning on your heel, you breathed out audibly before starting at him and throwing yourself straight into his arms. Loki smiled, you could feel his lips curling upwards against your neck when he wrapped you in a tight hug and buried his face in your hair for a while. Thor only stood there, amazed and flabbergasted by the odd image before his eye.

Loki still held you in his arms when he looked up to meet his curious gaze. “It suits you.” He said, referring to his eye patch.

“Perhaps you’re not so bad after all, brother.”

“Maybe not,” he gave back, smirking wickedly in the process.

“Thank you. You know, I might even give you a hug too.”

Loki’s smirk grew wider, playfully. “I’ll pass.”

Finally, you let go of the God of Mischief but still held on to him by placing your palm against his chest. You had grown to love the feeling of his leather armour underneath your hands so much, a relieved sigh escaped your lips.

“Thor told me Asgard was destroyed,” you murmured barely audible. “I’m so sorry.”

You could feel his arm around your waist, keeping you close and safe. It hit you once more—he’s alive. You were both alive. You had both made it out of this hell. It was over. Finally.

“How did you make it off the planet?” Thor continued then.

Loki’s smirk widened. “Some mysteries shall remain unsolved, brother.”

A childish giggle escaped your lips, your whole body filling up with happiness hormones. “Where are we going now?”

“You will be delighted, little minx. Valkyrie just kindly let me know that we are going back to Earth.”

Your heart jumped once more. He had kept his promise. “Norway, to be precise—the very place Odin died. Our people will settle on the fjord, there will be much to do.” He explained calmly. “Besides, Thor has to prepare for a coronation, am I right, brother?” The slight bitterness in his voice did not go unnoticed. Crestfallen, you remembered what he had told you all those nights ago in the battered plane wreck on Sakaar—how much he himself longed to be king.

Thor’s next words, however, surprised you. “There will not be one.”

“I beg your pardon?”

Frowning, your gaze wandered back to him. The Thunderer paused, his lips parting. For a while, he said nothing, only his desperate sighing filling the quiet room and somehow drowning out the deafening roaring of the engines of the spaceship.

When he finally opened his mouth again, both Loki’s and your heart seemed to stop altogether.

“I want you to keep the throne, Loki.”

Chapter Text

Norway was wonderful. A paradise compared to all the horrors you had been confronted with on Sakaar and most importantly, you were back on Earth. From now on, so you knew, you would appreciate this planet a lot more than in the past.

A few days had passed since your arrival, with both Thor and Loki being busy setting up an entire village for their people to live in. You hadn’t seen much of him lately and although you did not expect him to spend any more time with you, the thought of sleeping alone again, in the darkness of a tent, saddened you. On Sakaar, you hadn’t had much of a chance to stay away from each other—if anything, it had been Loki’s choice to keep you around and of course, keep you safe and alive. That didn’t automatically mean that you had formed a friendship during that time, let alone a relationship. Even though for you… for you it was the case.

You had come to one conclusion—not telling Loki you were in love with him had been the right decision, this one time in which Thor had so rudely interrupted you by escaping the Grandmaster’s clutches a cruel sign. What if he had told you that you were being delusional? That you only imagined things because of your somewhat forced proximity on Sakaar? Here, reunited with Asgard’s people, he was surrounded with beautiful, immortal women—a lot of which never missed an opportunity to bat their eyelashes at him, knowing that as the king, he would sooner or later choose a queen.

But then again there was your almost-kiss. His lips brushing against yours ever so slightly you sometimes at night still wondered if you had imagined him touching you in the first place.

You sighed. Loki had been able to save only a couple of books from Asgard—heavens knew how he had managed that. He stashed them all in a separate tent, some kind of provisory library in which you now spent most of your time. It was the only way to occupy yourself, really. Bruce helped Thor where he could and since you still didn’t have a phone or anything alike, you couldn’t even contact your family and friends.

Susan’s funeral… you had missed it for sure. Did your parents even believe you were still alive? Or had they given up on you already and bought a tombstone for you?

Sighing, you rubbed your eyes, your lids growing heavier with every second that passed. It was not new you fell asleep in Loki’s provisory library. It was a peaceful place, calm and quiet, being surrounded by books and ancient knowledge. So you didn’t even fight it when you drifted off, the book you were reading falling into your lap. You were grateful you were able to sleep at all—if anything, because in this tent, it felt like Loki was right with you.


Council meetings were the boring part of ruling a kingdom, even if its home planet had been destroyed. Loki had spent hours on end talking to the einherjer and ambassadors from other realms who lived among the Aesir to form new allegiances for his ruling. He had decided it was best if Thor took care of war-driven decisions like this. All he did was approving or, if he didn’t like the choices he made, declining and scolding him to come up with a cleverer idea. There had to be some advantage of finally being superior to his older brother, the rightful heir of the throne, after all.

He loved every second of being king. The freedom that came with it, the respect and the recognition he received not disguised as Odin but as himself, filled him with delight and joy; and as soon as everything formal and political was taken care of, he would finally retreat to his new library with some good ale and juicy grapes and read in peace—besides, so he knew, (Y/N) would be hiding there too, snuggled up on a pile of pillows in between crammed shelves. He could not quite explain it but he had come to enjoy your presence and company. The urge to protect you was so strong it practically tore at his heart, the thought of anyone harming you causing him physical pain. He realised he had started caring for you during all of this time on Sakaar and maybe… maybe there was even more than that.

Oh, scratch maybe. He had known the minute he had pulled you on his lap during the contest of champions. Your curves rubbing just against the right spots, your soft body curled up in bed right next to him, clutching at him like a helpless little kitten, drowning in the sea… so many of your actions had proved him you indeed trusted him with your life. And then, there was your feistiness, your temperament. You were quite the talented fighter, this much he had learned when training you, although he himself had not been able to figure out why he had continued keeping up the act after Thor’s capture. At first, he had done it to not raise any suspicion—his meetings with the Grandmaster, after all, were all but occasional. Then, however, knowing you could handle yourself with one of his daggers, somewhat calmed him. All those countless times he had saved your life… for Valhalla’s sake, he had almost kissed you. He had been so tempted… and in every single free minute, he somehow wished to finally finish what he had started on the battlefield.

For a mortal, you were incredibly strong. A strong and independent woman. There were your panic attacks, of course—your mind and body overwhelming your will under the circumstances Hela had tossed you in, it had nothing to do with weakness. You had dealt with so many catastrophes, put up with so much tragedy he admired you. Now, the Avengers, whom he had fought, after all, were used to death and war. You, on the other hand, were a young journalist ripped from her normal life only to spend it, constantly afraid, with the God of Mischief.

Not once had he imagined to put to the test just how strong you were. That day when he had caught you stepping out of the shower wearing nothing but a towel, to rip it off your body, tie you to the bed and have his way with you until you begged him to stop—until he had coaxed so many orgasms from you, you would become a trembling and soaking mess, ready for him to sink his rock-hard member into your wet warmth and own you the way he claimed he did when he met the Grandmaster.

This was a whim, it must be. He hadn’t had sex in so long, he was starving—after all, even a god was only a man with needs. He would soon accept the services of young Asgardian concubines if he ceased to concentrate on the royal problems on hand any longer. He would soon bring you and Bruce away from here anywhere. This was no place to live for two mortals, among Asgardians when they both had a life somewhere else. He didn’t care about Banner, really, but the delightful and hopeful glistening in your eyes when he had promised you to get you back home safely had been but a thrill he, for some unknown reason, wanted to experience again.

A sigh escaped his lips. Soon, he would not have to bother with these confusing feelings any longer anyway.

“Loki, think of what father said. Asgard’s people are scared. They know about your true heritage and many of them are still suspicious and don’t trust you.” The God of Mischief was still sitting in the provisory throne room, his fingertips tracing his soft lips. Restlessly, his gaze wandered around on the green grass until he brought it up to meet Thor’s.

“What do you suggest?” He offered. Though his words were sincere, there was a hint of a mocking tone in his voice. The Thunderer, of course, did not notice. Only Valkyrie did, who silently stood there in a corner with her arms crossed. The three of them were the only people in the room.

“You know I don’t want this throne but if I leave it to you, I must know for sure that you will take care of our folk. Regain their trust, show them you care for them.”

“Both you and I know I am highly unskilled in gaining people’s trust.” Loki’s thoughts jumped to you. You trusted him. How had he managed again?

“I am though,” Valkyrie tossed in. The God of Mischief shot her a pondering glare. “I could be of help. Smiling politely is all I’d have to do, the ruling I leave to you. We’ve grown quite… familiar anyway and we’re a lot more alike than I’d like to admit. Announce it tomorrow, before (Y/N) and Bruce leave us, during the feast.”

Thor nodded as an eerie silence filled the room once more. He was anxious; they must have talked about this before. Loki was a feisty man who took what he wanted without asking. Only this time, if he wanted to remain king of this realm, this might in fact be his only opportunity, he was very well aware of that, his brother surely wasn’t that stupid. Thus far, the council meetings had not been very successful in terms of new allegiances either. As much as he hated to admit it, Thor was probably right.

“So this is your plan?”

They both nodded. Finally, the God of Mischief sighed. A slight sting right in his heart followed his words when he spoke up again.

Very well. Then it is decided.”


It was your sweet sigh that caught his attention when he entered the library late at night. The moon and the stars were already out and illuminating the black sky above them, the sun long gone. Loki was tired, yet there was no way he would be able to sleep. Burying his nose in books, on the other hand, sounded tempting.

An involuntary smile crept up his lips when he spotted your sleeping form on the pile of pillows he had set up. There was a book resting on your lap, the very same he had wanted to read just now. Soundless, he approached you, his steps swallowed by the grass underneath the soles of his dark boots and then, before he could even properly think of what he was doing, he brought up his hand and gently brushed his fingers over your cheek as if to caress you.

He had done this before, much to his own surprise. It felt wonderful to stroke your face as if you were some cherished pet, a lover he deeply cared for. And it were actions he did not comprehend himself, especially when he tenderly lifted you up into his arms and carried you bridal style, through the utter darkness, back to your tent to have you sleep in a proper bed.