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who will make me fight?

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“Thor?” Bruce knocked on his door and kept the two bowls of soup balanced on the small platter in his other hand. After waiting for a moment with no response he tried the doorknob, opening it tentatively when he found it unlocked. “Thor, I was making myself some food, and I thought you might, uh, want some? I’m not sure if you need to eat, but you haven’t in a while, and…” He trailed off when he realized Thor was barely acknowledging him. The usually optimistic god of thunder was sitting on the edge of his bed with his head in his hands, taking measured breaths. Bruce put the tray down on the coffee table before crossing the room, sitting next to him, and extending his arms to Thor. With no hesitation he was pulled into a tight hug; Thor’s face buried in the crook of Bruce's neck and his own arms holding the taller man close.

They stayed like that until the setting sun had completely disappeared and given way to the night. The moon was full and orange-- A harvest moon, Bruce noticed. Looks like one of those damn stones. He sighed and slowly pulled away from Thor, but left a hand comfortingly on his back. Thor wiped at his eyes quickly-- Bruce had noticed he was crying but decided to not comment as they had hugged-- and cleared his throat.

“Sorry about that.” Was all Thor managed, not looking Bruce in the eyes.

“It’s alright. I mean that. We’ve all been through a lot, but uh, you more than most of us. Sometimes you just need to…” He gestured lamely. “let it out.”

“That I did,” Thor said and smiled weakly. “It’s been hard to… keep going, Banner. It’s a little frightening. I’ve always known it was my duty to protect the realms, but I couldn’t keep my family or my people safe.” His voice caught in his throat and Bruce felt his heart break a little. Thor was easily one of the strongest people Bruce knew and it hurt him more than expected to see Thor so upset.

“I know the feeling.” Bruce said quietly, taking his hand from Thor’s back and running it through his own hair anxiously. “I-I really do, Thor. But you have to keep going. Not just for the greater good, but for them.” The hypocrisy of his words was not lost on himself; had he not attempted to end his own suffering just a few years prior? Before their silence became awkward, he spoke up again. “Do you want the soup I made? There’s enough for both of us. We can heat it up if it’s gone cold.” He offered, standing and picking up the tray again.

Thor looked at him in a way that Bruce couldn’t quite discern before giving a slight nod and smiling once more. “I’d like that, Bruce. Thank you for checking in on me.”

“I-It’s nothing really, I mean,” he took a deep breath before he could start rambling. “It’s the least I can do.” With a half-smile, he walked out of the room behind Thor. As they walked to the common area, steps in sync, a faint warmth spread through his chest despite the grimness of their conversation. He couldn’t explain why he felt hopeful-- this was probably the most dire mission the Avengers had been tasked with yet. Somehow, though, they would get through it. They would keep fighting.