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A life for a life

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Thor rinsed the plates and put them to dry. Though the house Tony had found for them had most modern amenities ̶- including a dishwasher ̶- he preferred to do them by hand. His Avenger friends had been surprised to see him again, to say the least, but they had been very understanding. Stark had taught them how to turn their Asgardian gold into Midgard's currency, and had helped them find some place to settle down. Iceland was a good choice for both of them: cold enough that Loki would be comfortable but not so cold that Thor couldn’t stand it. Also, its Scandinavian roots, despite the late Christian layering, made it easier for them to relate and the landscape reminded them of the Asgardian mountains in which they used to hunt.

The house was isolated, but there was a village less than an hour away. It had plenty of space and they could hear the waves crashing against the seashore from their bedroom. It was the ideal place to raise a child.

Thor was entering the living room when he heard Kára’s delighted squeal.

“He kicked! Magni kicked!” Kára laid her small head against Loki's round belly, where her future brother was growing. Loki smiled indulgently at her, but he winced at their son's next kick.

“He is going to be a warrior like you.” He scowled at Thor, who chuckled while sitting on the couch. Thor laid his arms around his lover’s extended waist, and Loki settled against him. Kára was admonishing her brother to not hurt their mother, as seriously as only a three year-old could.

They had not renounced to free their mother from her deal with Hela, but leverage against someone as powerful as the Queen of Niflheim didn't come along easily or often. With enough time, they would find something, and thanks to their mother’s gift, they had a long time ahead of them. But until then, they would honor their mother's wishes.

Loki dozed against Thor’s shoulder, while slowly caressing their daughter's black hair. She had settled against her mother's stomach, humming softly to her unborn brother.

Thor hugged Loki tighter and smiled. For the first time in his very long life, he was truly at peace.

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