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Real Men Wear Pink (if their granddaughters tell them to)

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Disclaimer: I don't own Thor or any of the characters therein. Marvel and Disney own everything, and I'm just writing this story for fun, not profit.

 

Real Men Wear Pink (if their granddaughters tell them to)

 

Hela sat on the floor, watching her grandpa finish his homework.  Daddy and Uncle Thor were on a mission to Elfheim, and Grandma and Mommy were both in bed sick with something that had spread through the Healers' ward, so Hela had to sit with her grandpa while he worked until a nanny was available.  She loved her grandpa, she really did, but she had been sitting here quietly like a good girl for hours and she was bored out of her mind

Well, what was Grandpa here for, if not to entertain her?  Daddy always dropped whatever he was doing to play dolls with her and tell stories, and sometimes even Uncle Thor would join in, but she had learned, with much trial and error, that Grandpa didn't much like dolls or stories.  He was Much Too Important for that.  Nonetheless, she had learned that annoying him was a good way to either get sent to her room, or get him to drop everything and pay attention to her, depending on his mood.  All she had to do was be persistent enough.

"Grandpa."

No response.  He sighed and scratched his beard in annoyance.

"Grandpa."  Silence.  "Grandpa. Grandpa. Grandpa. GrandpaGrandpaGrandpaGrandpaGrandpaGrandpaGrand—"

"What, Hela?!"

"…Will you play with me?"

"I'm working right now, Hela.  I told you that you need to sit quietly like a good girl."

"But I have been!  It's been hours. I finished my book and I finished playing with my dolls and I finished my other book and now I don't have anything to do except watch you work and it's soooo boring."

"Hela, you know Grandpa has important work to do."

Hela widened her big green eyes slightly and made them fill with tears, just in the way her daddy had taught her.

"I know, and I'm trying to be good, but you always have important work and I—I just never get to see you!"

Grandpa just stared at her for a moment with an expression she couldn't work out before looking down at the parchment on his desk in despair and sighing, muttering something under his breath that she could have sworn sounded like "...had to inherit those eyes."  Whatever inherit meant.

"Alright, I'll play with you for awhile, but only for awhile.  I wasn't lying when I said I had important things to do."

Not able to remember when her grandpa had played with her last—she would bet it had been weeks, maybe even years and years since the last time—she grinned widely and raced around the desk to give him a big hug.

"Oof!" he said, and his voice sounded a little funny, maybe even a little bit wheezy, which made her worry he had caught a cold, too.  He didn't feel like he had a fever, though, so it probably wasn't a bad one.

"Thank you, thankyouthankyouthankyou!"

"You're very welcome.  You're right that it has been some time since we've gotten to spend time together, my girl, and I'm very sorry for that.  What would you like to do?"

"I want to play dress up!"

Grandpa blinked.

"Wouldn't you rather play that with Grandma?"

Hela frowned, puzzled. 

"Why?  Daddy plays dress-up with me just as much as Mommy does.  He looks very pretty in a dress.  He says that real men aren't afraid to put on women's clothing, because they are secure in their masc-u-lin-ity."

Grandpa coughed into his hand in that way he did when he was trying not to laugh.

"And some day, he will convince your uncle Thor of that.  Your daddy probably looks much prettier in a dress than I would, Sweetling.  Dresses made for a lady usually aren't of a size to fit old men like me."

"What's that mean?"

"It means I'm too fat," he said, laughter in his eyes.  Grandpa may have thought it was funny, but Hela was offended on his behalf.  He shouldn't be mean to himself like that.

"You're not fat!"

"I'm not?"  He made a show of looking around the room.  "You must be looking at a different grandpa!"

"You're not!  You're really strong."

"So someone can't be fat and strong at the same time?"

"…I just don't like it when you call yourself that, Grandpa.  It's mean."

His eyes softened.

"I'm sorry, Sweetling.  I didn't mean to upset you.  I won't say it anymore."

Hela sniffed with wounded dignity.

"Thank you."

He stifled another laugh for some reason and drew her into a hug.  Hela smiled, already feeling better.  Grandpa was always so warm, and his hugs made her feel warm, too.

"What should we do, today, then, if we can't find a dress to fit your old…strong Grandpa?"

"We can still play dress-up!"

"Oh?"  He smiled.

"Well, you do need a new hairstyle," she said with conviction.  She had thought this for a long time.

His eyes twinkled.

"Go on, child."

Hela grinned.  She was so glad that she had remembered to bring her entire collection of bows with her today.

 

Frigga made her way to her husband's study in haste, having just been released from the Healers' ward, her bottle of horrible-tasting medicinal potion in hand.  As much as Odin loved his granddaughter, she hoped Hela hadn't driven him to tear his hair out. She could be very…spirited, and a wee bit spoiled, which was totally Loki and Sigyn's fault and had nothing to do with her completely sensible grandparents.  She and Odin were much too level-headed to let the fact that Hela was their first grandchild cloud their judgment in any way.

With trepidation, she opened the study door, and, well…

I may have spoken too soon about clouded judgment, she thought, collapsing in giggles at the sight of her husband, the Ruler of the Nine Realms, decked out in dozens of tiny braids with pink bows on them.

"You look dashing, darling," she said.  He grinned.

"Why, thank you.  Someone's becoming quite the little hairstylist."

"Thank you, Grandpa!" Hela chirped from behind him, where she was tying off one last long white braid that was trying to curl despite her best efforts.  "Ooh, Grandma, can I do you next?" she said, running over to take her hand after she was done.

"Yes, Grandma, care to join the party?" Odin said with a wink.  She swatted him lightly on the arm, and turned back to her granddaughter.

"I would love that, Hela," she said, beginning the lengthy process of removing the dozens of hairpins that were holding up a hairstyle that her handmaidens had worked hours on, this morning.  Well, they would just have to deal.  There were more important things than courtly etiquette to even a queen of Asgard, after all.