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Clint and Loki settle down on the couch and the rest of the team retreats to the kitchen to make lunch and, Clint is sure, try to strategize a little. Thor attempts to stay in the living room with his brother and hover conspicuously, but Steve successfully steers him into the kitchen where he stands by the door and spends most of his time trying to watch Loki and Clint.

In Clint’s lap, Loki twitches and whimpers occasionally. When he looks, Clint can see Loki’s mouth moving silently, as if he’s arguing with himself.

“It’ll be all right,” Clint says when he can’t stand sitting there silently listening to Loki suffer any longer. “Don’t worry, kid, we’ll figure something out and it’ll be - “

The living room wall blows in, showering them both in debris. Clint has just enough time to take in the sight of a fucking army of those goddamn robot things when Thor’s arms grab both of them from behind and haul them bodily into the kitchen.

“Remain here. I leave my brother in your charge,” Thor says, depositing them behind the kitchen island, and then launches himself into the fray.

A moment later Bruce joins them, ducking as half of the living room coffee table smashes into the kitchen wall behind him.

“Too many,” he gasps. “Tony’s gone to get his armor and Coulson pulled a machine gun out of freaking nowhere but it took three of you guys to take out the last one - “

Clint struggles to his knees. “They must have been testing us out this whole time,” He says. “Take Loki, I have a spare bow in the cabinet - “

“No,” Bruce says calmly. “I can’t carry him and you’re going to have to run.” He opens one of the cabinets, digging out a frying pan, and stands up. “I’ll give you some cover.”

“Bruce, don’t be an idiot, you can’t - “ Clint breaks off, horrified, as a warped shimmer covers Bruce from head to toe. “Loki, no - “

There’s a bright flash of light, and Loki convulses in Clint’s arms. Bruce staggers, and then straightens with Natasha’s fluid grace.

“Stay down,” she says, and charges into battle.

Clint gathers Loki up as best he can while he’s still seizing and runs for the kitchen door. Something complicated shatters behind him and someone screams, but he’s sprinting flat-out for the containment cells and he doesn’t have time to turn and look.

He pounds down the stairs, skids around the corner, slams the door of Natasha’s containment cell open and throws himself to the side. Bruce sprints past a half-second later, Hulking out as he runs.

Loki’s convulsions have stopped. Clint slides down against the wall, frantically checking for his pulse.

“Come on. Come on, kid...”

Loki’s eyes snap open.

“Why, Hawkeye,” he purrs. “I didn’t know you cared.”