Actions

Work Header

plans and prophecies

Chapter Text

Loki always knew he was to marry one of Odin’s sons. And, in the same breath, Loki always knew it would be Thor.

It was why he’d been brought to Asgard in the beginning. The House of Laufey would give forth a child too small, and he, in turn, would be given to Asgard—an ancient prophecy. A babe swaddled from the frigid plains of Jotunheim; a bringer of peace and of permanent bridges. He was raised by the All-Father and Mother, alongside their own younglings. A son, and a brother, never a ward or hostage.

Still, Loki always remembered his purpose.

Baldr, the youngest, was closest to his age. There wasn’t much to say about him. Third in line for the throne; smart, but not clever; plain in looks and personality. He was a kind soul with a gentle heart, and Loki supposed it wasn’t the worst thing to call him brother. Still, Baldr’s freedom would lie in a marriage of his choosing. No one lined the gates of Asgard for a chance at the hand of a third prince; he held nothing but Odin’s name.

Tyr, the eldest, and the heir, was another story. Nearly a decade Loki’s senior, he was bred and groomed for politics and warfare. Tall, and broad, but with all of Odin’s worst features. He lacked beauty but held a fierce amount of power; which, Loki couldn’t deny was attractive in its own right. It more than made up for his stern demeanor and less-than-impressive conversation skills.

But Loki would not be wed to Tyr. He was still of Jotnar blood, no matter the glamor to pale his skin and bleed the red from his eyes. No, Odin would fashion a political marriage with a nice Vanir girl, someone who would sit pretty on the throne and not cause a revolt within the people.

Which, left Thor. Not that this was any shame.

Thor was the middle child and unburdened with tedious court affairs. He spent most of his days on the training grounds; sweating and cursing, fighting and winning. Loki spent long summer days in the sweltering sun just to study the maps of the muscle in his arms and back when he swung a broadsword. Thor was truly the most handsome creature he’d ever laid eyes on. Golden hair, and a golden tan, bright blue eyes that sparked a distant memory of an icy home.

And he wasn’t all brawn. Thor was clever and adventurous, and he made Loki laugh so hard his sides split.

That was to say, he did.

Something changed as the years crept on. Thor still called him brother but didn’t much act like it. He avoided Loki, scarcely even making eye contact at dinner. He planned more and more hunting trips, rejecting Loki and Baldr’s attempts to tag along. If brought up, he denied it and fled to pummel something with his fists or hammer.

It was all very frustrating. But, Loki supposed, could be chalked up to pre-wedding jitters. After all, he was coming of age soon, and the announcement would be ringing throughout the realm.

In this, Loki could be patient.

 

 

 

“What?” Loki lamented. “Lady Freyja—” Her glare cut him, and he quickly corrected himself. “Mother, please tell me this is a cruel joke.”

The line of her mouth flattened, and she fixed Loki with a stare that let him know she was vaguely insulted. He couldn’t find it in himself to care. This was quite possibly the worst news he had ever received. Loki dropped down and gathered the hem of her gown in his hands, pressing his forehead to her knees where she sat.

His world crashed down around him, everything he had ever known—a lie.

“Loki, dear,” Freyja took hold of his chin and tilted his head up to meet her eyes. Her touch gentle, but her voice stern. “You are born with the blood of kings. You were meant to rule, haven’t you said so yourself?”

Loki sniffed and blinked away his tears, fighting the urge to jerk away. How dare she use his own words against him. Of course, he was meant to rule— he was cleverer than half of Asgard’s court. But that didn’t mean…

“Tyr?” Loki moaned again, shoulders sagging in a sulk. “You truly wish to wed me to such a—”

“This is my son you speak of,” she warned, and Loki clamped his mouth shut. “Your brother and your betrothed.”

Betrothed. He could wretch.

A shiver ran down his spine at the thought of sharing a bed with Tyr. Beast was what he had planned on calling him. Rough, and with a mind only for politics and war tactics. What would they even discuss in the privacy of their bedchamber? He was dreadfully bored already.

“I thought, perhaps…” Loki swallowed, averted his gaze. It felt silly now. “Thor,” he finished dumbly.

Freyja laughed, but not unkindly. He felt his cheeks redden, and his eyes stung with newly-formed tears. She meant it not in mockery, but it felt that way all the same. What a fool he had been, to think they would marry him to their golden son?

“You were always meant to rule alongside Asgard, as a symbol of permanent peace,” she said softly, without knowledge of the impact in her words. The implication that he was no more than a symbol. He recoiled as if slapped.

Loki realized, then, that the sinking stone in the pit of his stomach was his heart.  

He couldn’t fulfill his prophecy with Thor, so they sold him to the future king. It mattered not what Loki wanted, what his heart desired. It only mattered that he slotted himself into the correct role and played his part.

Loki once cherished being chosen. But it was then he decided that prophecies were outdated, and useless in measure.

He, Loki of both Asgard and Jotunheim, would scribe his own fate and see it played out.

 

 

 

The breeze offered a cool respite from the dry Asgard air. Loki lay, solemn in state, along a grassy knoll overlooking the courtyard. Idly he tossed an apple in the air, caught it, and repeated the gesture until his palms stung.

“It won’t be so bad. At least you know him.”

Loki caught the apple one last time, it slapped against his skin, and he shot a dagger-like glare toward Baldr. His brother— his sweet, and naïve brother. He probably truly thought that. But of course, Baldr had never been in love; and one day, when he was, he would be allowed to marry the sorry sap.

For the fates had woven nothing into Baldr’s tapestry. He was free to do as he chose.

Loki sighed, propping himself up on his elbows. Baldr didn’t deserve the blunt force of his bitterness, so he forced a smile, which his brother returned in kind.

“Maybe not,” he lied. Loki actually knew little to nothing about his older brother.

“Are you nervous?”

Loki bit at his bottom lip, turning the apple in one hand, watching the way the sun gleamed off its skin. Was he? A loaded question, really. There was much to come with this marriage. He knew his fair share of politics, though he wasn’t groomed as excessively as Tyr. There was little chance he’d be needing much of it; his duties would most likely be domestic in nature.

“A little,” Loki said, this time the truth. “Nothing I can’t handle, I’m sure.”

For the strangest reason, Baldr’s cheeks grew red and ruddy. He picked at a blade of grass, seemingly interested in the way it twirled in his fingers.

Oh, Loki realized, perhaps they were speaking of different aspects of the marriage.

“Have you ever…?”

Ah, so they were.

“No,” Loki said. Another truth, surely a new record for him. “Have you?”

Baldr shook his head furiously. “No, of course not.”

“Of course,” Loki echoed; voice slightly distant.

A half-formed idea began to take shape. Loki knew himself to be attractive, desirable on most days. He lacked the bulk of his brothers, but there was a certain appeal held in his waif-like stature. Pale skin to hide his natural blue, eyes green, and with a retainment of his sharp Jotun features.

It would be in his best interest to use his natural beauties to his advantage.

And that interest was to seduce Thor into choosing him, and making it so neither Odin nor Freyja, would reject the proposal. To do this, he would need practice in the one art he wasn’t well-versed in.

There were plenty of stable boys that looked his way and a fair number that Loki may have considered. But he needed to learn to charm a brother—and there one so happened to be. Perfectly amenable.

Loki looked to Baldr, letting his eyes droop to a sultry gaze; the way same he’d seen the kitchen wenches ogle Thor.

He shifted so that he laid on his side, pillowing his head in his hand, and tilted slightly to expose his bare neck. Loki watched Baldr’s eyes glance over to him once or twice, the little blade of grass being wrung for all its worth between his fingers.

This was new and easy.

“What if I’m disappointing?” Loki asked with a slight pout.

“I don’t—” Baldr swallowed audibly, stammering through his sentence.  “I don’t think you would be.”

Loki felt a thrill ignite in him. Oh, this was fun. Had Baldr been harboring affection for him all this time? Did he also think Loki was set to marry the wrong Odinson?

He reached out, placing a hand on his brother’s knee. It jerked under his touch, and Loki gave him a sharp smile. “How can we know for sure?”

Baldr tensed and finally admired him properly. The poor thing looked like a rose from their mother’s garden, and Loki wagered the thin break of sweat on his forehead wasn’t all from the heat. Gears turning in his head, Baldr blinked and stared like a broken wind-up toy, mouth slightly unhinged.

“Baldr,” Loki chastised. “Would you like to practice?”

“With—with you?”

Loki rolled his eyes and hoped it passed for fondly. “Yes, with me.”

“Oh, well—uhm.”

“We don’t have to.”

“I want to!” Baldr blurted, hand coming to cover his mouth. He recovered moments later, leaning closer into Loki and looking earnestly into his eyes. Repeating, softer, “I want to.”

“Excellent.”

Chapter Text

“What if someone sees us?”

“They won’t.”

“Loki—”

Loki groaned and rolled off Baldr, lying flat on his back with his arms spread wide. This was going smoothly. Which was to say, it wasn’t going smoothly at all. They were high atop a hill overlooking the palace, shaded by a large apple tree. If anything, a passing guard would assume they were wrestling.

He just wanted to get this over with so he could move on to the real thing.

Next to him, Baldr whined. Loki had left him hard in his breeches, laces half-undone. He deserved it. Loki had just worked himself into a similar state when he decided a secluded spot in an empty acre was too public.

“Let’s just go back to the palace, we can go to my rooms,” Baldr suggested. “Or, we can go to yours.”

“Where anyone could walk in?”

His brother sighed, a defeated sound. It only brought a little satisfaction.

Loki reached over and patted Baldr’s lap until his fingers found the hard outline of his cock, and that sigh quickly morphed into a shaky moan. His legs fell apart wider, hips bucking up into the touch, and Loki squeezed until he milked another moan.

“We can stop,” Loki whispered, and perhaps it was cruel, for he continued to stroke at Baldr through his leathers.

He knew he wouldn’t stop him, not now.

“Okay,” Baldr breathed out, whimpering when Loki’s clever fingers found the head of his cock.

“Okay, stop?”

“No—Gods, Loki, no. Don’t stop.”  

Loki did, if only for a second, to roll back to his knees so that he could get a proper angle. The front of Baldr’s pants was damp, and the laces had come further undone.

“Look at that,” Loki mused in sincere awe. “I haven’t even freed you yet.”

Loki held no real attraction for Baldr, but the power in stripping someone to a panting mess was intoxicating. It was no wonder his own cock had plumped hard again, and further back with a blossoming slick.

Still, he pulled his hand away, despite the sob of protest it earned him. This wasn’t what he was interested in. Loki had a cock; he knew how to tug on one properly.

Loki unlaced his own pants and shoved them roughly to his ankles, struggling to get a boot free from the pant-leg. Baldr watched, eyes wide, and quickly followed suit, shucking off his own pants and tossing them aside. Loki looked over to catch sight of his cock, hard and curved toward his soft belly. Average in size and thickness, much like Baldr himself.

How were they to do this? Should Loki attempt to ride him? No, that seemed too ambitious for the first time.

Plus, it would be beneficial to his own pleasure if he found a position where he could easily fantasize about a different brother.

A memory of a page in a book, one he was not supposed to read, flickered in his mind.

Loki’s face heated, but he supposed it would work. Thor might like to take him that way, and the thought sparked arousal low in his belly.

“Okay,” Loki said confidently. He moved to get on his hands and knees.

A hand came to rest on his shoulder; it gripped him hard and tugged him back upright. “What are you doing?”

“Assuming the position,” Loki blinked.

Baldr looked absolutely horrified. “Like an animal?”

“Well, yes, I suppose,” he replied, not really seeing the problem. They were animals in the most literal of senses, weren’t they? “How would you do it?”

Baldr flushed impossibly brighter, worrying his lip between his teeth. He looked shy and younger than he was. A blushing virgin ready to be deflowered.

Loki scoffed, as if weren’t the same.

“Well,” Baldr started, humming and thinking. He sat back on his haunches, cock still on full display. “I think I would like to face you.”

“Oh, Loki replied a bit stiffly. “Alright.”

Loki maneuvered himself until he was once again laying on his back; the grass sticking uncomfortably to his backside, making his skin itch. Baldr came to slot himself between his legs, gingerly running his hands up and down his calves, and then higher to his thighs. He repressed a shiver and closed his eyes to keep himself from seeing the nervous smile on Baldr’s face.

“Is this okay?”

Loki only nodded, squeezing his thighs around Baldr’s middle to draw him in close. He braced himself for it, the initial push in. He’d read it hurt in books for Aesir women, though he was not a woman, he supposed it would be the same.

It never came. The wind only whistled coldly on his exposed nether-regions. Loki cracked one eye open to find Baldr staring at his crotch in comical fright.

“What’s the matter?” Loki asked with an edge of insecurity.

He knew he wasn’t built like his brothers, or like anyone else in Asgard. The biology of his true heritage lay between his legs, and he wasn’t ashamed, he wasn’t. But to have someone stare at you, fraught and frozen…

Baldr’s head snapped up, eyes wide, and Loki fought the urge to strike him with an open palm.

“Haven’t you seen a cunt before?” Loki snapped, dangerously close to calling the entire thing off. Baldr must have sensed his trepidation, because he spurred back into action.

“No,” he admitted. “I’m sorry, you’re just so lovely.”

Loki bristled, his face heating. “Just get on with it.”

No sooner than he said it, Loki felt the blunt head of Baldr’s cock nudge against him, slipping in the natural dampness his body so generously produced. Loki scrambled back, letting out a humiliating squeal, and clamped his legs closed.

“What?” Baldr asked. His thick brows knitted together in concern; a real worry present. “Did I hurt you?”

“Use your fingers first!”

Never mind that he was more than anticipating a cock before. But, somehow, the idea of Baldr breaking him in caused a bit of anxiety that he hadn’t expected. It was his first time. He didn’t want to rip or ruin himself on Baldr’s stupid prick.

“Oh.”

Baldr placed his hands atop Loki’s knees, and Loki nodded his head in permission. Slowly, he parted them again, sucking in a breath as he looked his fill.

Loki lay back on the grass, wincing slightly at the first prod of a finger.

“Tell me if it hurts,” he said. “I want to make you feel good.”

Norns bless, Loki believed him, he just lacked faith.

“You’re so tight,” Baldr whispered, his voice already shaky. He pushed his finger to the knuckle, and then further still, until Loki winced in discomfort. He pulled out, digit ram-rod straight, and plunged back in.

Loki had used his own fingers before, but it felt more like Baldr was poking at gelatin, not trying to finger a cunt. He squeezed his eyes shut tight and tried to at least focus on the in-and-out slide, until his body felt ready to request another. At least stuffed with two fingers, the burning stretch offered a pleasant sensation.

“Try this,” Loki said. He held up two fingers and crooked them. “Just a little—ahh. Yes, like that.”

“Good?”

Loki bit his lip, stifling back a moan, and nodded. His back arched into it, as the fingers deep inside him began to fuck with a little more finesse. He reached down and fisted his own cock, pulling slowly in time with Baldr.

This…wasn’t so bad. Perhaps he needed more guidance than Thor ever would, but it felt good.

Eventually.

“Loki,” Baldr whined. He’d dropped his head to Loki’s knee, panting as his fingers came to a stop. “Please, can we? Now?”

Loki, brain hazy with his looming release, had to agree that sounded like a good idea. He wanted to be filled, completely. His body yearned for it, and it mattered not who gave it to him. Baldr, Thor, Tyr. Loki just needed to be fucked.

“Yes,” he hissed out, leaning up and gently taking hold of Baldr’s wrist still between his legs. His brother seemed to understand, letting his fingers slip free, leaving Loki empty and wanting. He guided him to his cock, straining so hard up against his belly that Loki feared he might not last long enough to follow through.  “Slick yourself up.”

Baldr let out a low whine when he wrapped his hand around himself. Squeezing and stroking a mix of his own beading precome and Loki’s natural wetness to ease the way. “Gods, Loki.”

Loki lay back again, spreading his legs wide enough for Baldr fit completely between them. He did so, barely, planting a hand on the soft grass by Loki’s head and Loki had no choice but to stare up at his face. There was a resemblance there to Thor; the faint freckles on the bridge of his nose, the cornflower blue of his eyes. But his cheeks were far plumper, and his hair bordered brunette, darker even with the sweat that clung to the short strands.

“Are you ready?” Baldr asked.

“Just do it already.”

Baldr smiled in that same way he always did when Loki was being particularly troublesome. There was an unending giddiness radiating from him; anticipation for the act they were about to share together.

Consummation of a relationship Loki never planned to bring to fruition.

He felt bad. Almost.

Baldr’s cock wasn’t terribly thick, but the stretched burned when he pushed inside. Loki’s hand flew up to claw at his shoulders, wrapping his legs around his waist, letting out a sharp gasp. Baldr pushed through to the hilt, still and buried, as his head sagged in a breathy pant.

“Oh,” Loki said stupidly. He hadn’t known it would feel like this.

They both lay there unmoving in the grass, in only their summer tunics, connected together in the most intimate of places. Loki felt his stomach turn. It wasn’t supposed to be like this. He squeezed where his fingers dug into Baldr’s back, tried to imagine it was Thor mounting him. But Baldr, who spent his days in the library, not on the training grounds, was too soft.  

“Are you going to move?”

Let it be over.

“Just—” Baldr whined, tensing beneath Loki’s touch. “Just give me a moment, I’m afraid…”

Oh, Gods. Was he going to release before Loki even got a taste for it?

In those moments, Loki realized his miscalculation.

Baldr would never be the one to teach him how to fuck properly. He was going to need someone more experienced, someone older and with more stamina.

That particular train of thought died quickly. Baldr pulled back and thrust back in, a little too hard, and enough to make Loki cry out.

Finally.

Baldr, it seemed, was a man of little words when it came to his fucking. The only things Loki heard were shaky moans, breathy pants, and the distant sound of a bird chirping. He pounded into him at a near frantic speed, sometimes hitting that place inside that made Loki keen. And, more often than not, missing it completely.

Nevertheless, it did the trick.

Loki felt his body tense. The constant stimulation, doubled with the way he pulled and toyed at his own cock, had him close. He knew it was the same for Baldr, whose thrusts lost more and more control, and whose moans grew louder and hotter in his ear.

“I’m—” Baldr managed to get out. “I’m—”

He didn’t need to finish that thought, Loki knew what it meant. “Not in me!”

Loki closed his eyes when Baldr jerked out, imagining it was Thor’s hand on his knee as he spread him open wider. That it was Thor’s cock making that wet noises as he stroked himself to completion. And it was the feeling of Thor’s hot spend painting his belly, that had Loki tumbling over the edge.

It took everything in him not to whimper his name through the aftershocks.

When the dust settled, and pre-coital haze lifted from them, Loki felt his stomach flip for the umpteenth time. He imagined, in most cases, that one usually felt butterflies afterward. The dizziness associated with coupling with a lover that first time. That’s more than likely what Baldr felt, as he slumped forward and nuzzled his head against Loki’s neck.

Not Loki; he only felt the unwavering sense of dread.

“That was amazing,” his brother sighed happily.

Not the word he would have used, but fair enough.

Baldr leaned in, attempting to kiss him, and Loki turned his head just in time to feel his lips smash against his cheek. It didn’t seem to faze him, too high off his very recent orgasm, and the fact he was still half-sheathed within Loki. Even his panting sounded annoyingly happy.

“No one can know,” Baldr whispered, suddenly forlorn; his very recent happiness gone. “Father would have us both flogged.”

“Don’t worry.” Loki stared up past Baldr, into the cloudless sky. “No one will find out.”

It wasn’t for the sake of their purity, or their hides. Loki would positively die if a single soul in Asgard knew he let Baldr fuck him.

The heat from both body and sun soon had Loki panting and sweating fiercely. His skin was slick with it, a disgusting mixture of sweat and come drying between their bodies. The whole air around them reeked of dirt and sex, nearly causing Loki to retch.

He slapped at Baldr’s bare thigh. “Get off, you’ll smother me.”

Laughter rang in Loki’s ear, and Baldr rolled to the side, letting his head loll over to gaze upon him most intently. The lopsided, goofy smile on his face didn’t bode well. This wouldn’t be an easy thing to shake off, Loki saw that now. Baldr was already drooling like a love-sick pup.

“Hand me my pants,” Loki said, and Baldr obeyed, like the love-sick pup he was. He pulled them on, finding his boots he had somehow kicked off in the midst of their tumble, and buckled them up quickly. Beside him, Baldr did the same, but at a leisurely stroll.

“I could visit your rooms tonight,” he said idly.

Loki froze, fingers stilling where they failed to tie a knot in his leather breeches. “Perhaps not tonight.”

“Tomorrow?”

Loki squeezed his eyes shut, wishing his seidr was strong enough for teleportation. He looked over to find Baldr staring at him with hopeful anticipation, all cleaned up and tucked away. Loki hadn’t the heart to break his just yet.

“We don’t want to be too obvious, do we?” Baldr nodded, like that made sense. “Let us give it a week, and then I will visit you.”

“Loki?” he asked tepidly, ducking his head and leaning closer. “May I kiss you?”

Loki blinked, hummed indifferently. It was the least he could do, was it not? After all, Baldr had so willingly participated in his plan, botched as it was.

He feigned a smile. “Of course.”

Baldr kissed just as clumsy as he fucked, and Loki didn’t open for him, but let him work his lips against his own until he pulled away. He gave permission to be kissed, not a promise to kiss back. Unperturbed, Baldr gave him a chaste peck on the cheek.

“We should go now,” Loki told him. “Before someone catches us.”

 

 

 

Loki woke in the middle of the night, freezing cold and with his hearth fire burned to stray embers. He sat up on the edge of the bed, rubbing the sleep from his eyes and letting his sight adjust to the dark, with a vague pain in his stomach.

Hunger, he realized. He was hungry— starving.

Loki dressed in his night robes and cast a witch-light in the palm of his hand. It glowed as bright and green as his seidr and guided his way through the palace halls in a mindless mission for food.

Not a soul was awake, which made it all the more interesting to Loki that there was a strange racket coming from beyond the door of the kitchen.

He put out his light and pressed his ear against the keyhole. Pots rattling, cries, and loud thumping. Loki’s heart quickened. He knew he shouldn’t do it, but if the servants were bumping like rabbits where they prepared the food— well, he should stop it.

Loki burst through the door with a bravado that quickly died with the scene before him.

A dark-haired kitchen maid was bent over the island, hands scrambling to cover her naked breasts; her mouth, that was once hanging open in pleasure, gaping in fear. Loki felt his eyes go wide as his gaze traveled from her bosom to the masculine hands clutching at her hips and rucked up skirt. And then, to a naked chest, familiar because Loki had seen it many times before.

His heart threatened to leap from his throat when he finally caught sight of Thor’s face.

“Loki!”

But Loki was already turning to leave, hands fumbling on the handle until he was able to swing it open. Behind him, he heard the clamor of pots falling from their perch; the panicked cries of the maid; and Thor tripping over himself to get around the island.

“Loki, wait, Loki—”

Loki slammed the door in his face. He held his bulk up against it, sliding down until he sat on the cold, hard ground.

“Go away!” Loki shouted in response to Thor attempting to budge the door open. It stopped, abruptly.

“You weren’t meant to—”

“I said go away!” He buried his face in his hands, his palms coming away wet. Great, he was crying. Loki sniffed back his tears and thumped his head against the door. “Go finish her off,” he mumbled, though he doubted Thor could hear him now.

Loki sat there for a moment in the quiet. The noises never resumed, but he did hear hushed whispers, words he couldn’t quite make out. They were probably having a good laugh at his expense. Everyone did these days, it seemed.

Oh, there is Loki, with his silly crush.

He groaned and slammed his fist into the flagstone, cradling his hand to his chest when it hurt more than expected.

Stupid— Loki blinked back tears— he was stupid.

The image of Thor taking that maiden from behind entered his head without permission.

And strangely, the pull in his gut wasn’t entirely from sadness. At least he had been right in his guess of Thor’s preferences. Next time, when Baldr took him, he would make him do it that way, now that he knew what Thor looked and sounded like. Perhaps that was a bit perverse.

Loki stood up and brushed the front of his robe flat.

No, Baldr would not be fucking him again. He had nothing to offer, nothing to teach.

He needed someone with experience and grit, and someone who wouldn’t be afraid to take him like an animal or make him howl like one.

Who better to do that than his would-be husband? Surely Tyr had a thing or two up his sleeve.

Chapter Text

Morning found him bleary-eyed with sleep still clinging to him in the worst of ways. Loki found it difficult to haul himself out of bed, and he dressed in his casualwear at a sluggish pace, combing his hair with wisps of seidr through his fingertips.

The previous night played on a nightmarish loop in the back of his head.

Loki’s stomach lurched, twisted with gut-wrenching pain. And, as bad as seeing Thor with someone else felt, this particular ailment was due to hunger— thankfully easily solved.

He wandered to the kitchens, the palace a much livelier place in the light. Servants hustled by and armed Einherjar stood in rapt attention every few feet, most didn’t pay Loki any mind. Most days he found himself able to weave in and out of the shadows, undetected and reign to roam the palace unguarded. That was, when Baldr wasn’t nipping at his tail.

It made him feel free; at least, if he didn’t think too hard on the illusion.

Loki easily swiped a scone from the kitchens. He knew the kitchen-maid saw him, but she turned her head idly and whistled. Half of him thought he shouldn’t eat it at all, not after what he witnessed, but the rumbling in his stomach decided that was childish. He picked at it, wandering the halls that grew increasingly emptier until he was alone.

And then, until he wasn't.

Loki stopped abruptly, swallowing his bite of breakfast.

Thor.

“Loki, I’ve been looking everywhere for you,” Thor called to him. His walk turned to a jog; as if he was afraid Loki would take off running like a scared rabbit.

Tempting as it was, Loki held his ground, unflinching. Thor left a safe distance between them. One that Loki felt in his chest.

“Oh? You haven’t been concerned with my whereabouts in some time,” Loki said airily. He wasn’t bitter, he wasn’t. Except that he was, and Thor could no doubt taste it thick in the air.

“Brother—”

“Am I?” Loki snapped. The scone began to crumble in his fist, and so he made a show of stuffing it in his face.

Thor recoiled. “Of course.”

Loki hummed, noncommitted and unbelieving. That sparked something. Thor charged toward him, powerful swings of his arms, and Loki couldn’t help but stumble back.

But, as he approached, something in him softened. Loki's fingers relaxed where they were curled into defensive fists.

“I need to apologize,” Thor said quietly.

“For what?” Loki asked, knowing full well what he meant.

“Last night—”

Loki waved a hand, blowing a raspberry with his lips. Like he hadn’t flipped out. Like he hadn’t spent most of the night sobbing into his pillow with an ache in his heart. “It’s not a big deal. I only wish you wouldn’t fuck where I eat,” he said, popping another bite into his mouth.

Thor blinked and fell into step with Loki. “Oh, I thought…I thought I’d upset you.”

“Why?” Loki asked with a false air of curiosity. “You’re free to bed anyone you wish.”

“Is that what this is about?”

For a moment, Loki’s façade dropped, brows pinching together in confusion before he schooled it back to something more aloof. “What do you mean?”

“Well,” Thor started, and Loki could tell he was choosing his words carefully. “Because you aren’t given the same freedom. You belong to Tyr—”

“I belong to no one!”

Loki saw a red so bright, he feared his natural Jotun sight bled through. Thor stopped, mouth working wordlessly in a failed attempt to salvage the conversation. Through all that, Loki realized something most horrifying.

Thor knew he was to be married to Tyr.

“That’s not what I meant,” Thor started, but it quickly died off. He offered no further explanation. They both knew exactly what he meant.

Loki calmed his anger. This was the longest conversation they’d had in months, and as irritable as he was, he didn’t want to let it go just yet. Even if the sight of Thor’s handsome face spurred memories of what it looked like contorted in pleasure with someone other than him.

“So, do you love her?” Loki asked conversationally.

Thor’s eyebrows nearly rose to his hairline. “Who?”

“That maid you were fucking. Did you love her?”

He grew quiet. “You know the answer to that.”

Yes, but I need to hear you say it.

Loki needed to know that his mindless rolls through the hay were just that. That there was no one he had eyes for. After all, hadn’t he done the same with Baldr? Just someone to pass the time with. Loki could forgive him for that, as long as there was still hope in the end.

Thor sighed. “No, I don’t love her. To be honest, I can’t recall her name.”

Loki choked on the last bite of scone, blinking up at Thor with owlish eyes. A laugh bubbled out, relief beyond measure, and Thor smiled at him. The brilliant one, that showed his teeth and made his eyes crinkle. Loki felt his heart swoon, and for a moment he was a kindred spirit with the nameless, hopeless kitchen maid.

“You dog,” Loki accused. Thor had the decency to duck his head, embarrassed and shy.

They’d both wandered into an abandoned wing of the palace, only the whistle of the wind blowing through the archways and the faint sound of commotion in the courtyard. There could have been an Einherjar armed with a lance pointed straight at them, and Loki wouldn’t have cared a bit. Because Thor was turned to him, still smiling fondly, and so close he could smell the scented oil from his bath. He leaned into it.

Oh, how he wanted to touch.

“I missed you,” Thor said softly, and Loki’s heart constricted.

“Whose fault is that?” There was no venom in it, not really. A genuine question he wished to know the answer to. Loki could never pinpoint when things fell apart.

The softness vanished, a visible wall dropping in front of Thor’s face. He looked around, anywhere but Loki. “We should go, we wandered too far off.”

There wasn’t much left to do but agree, and together they made their way in uncomfortable silence back to the heart of the palace. There was a weird swirl left in Loki’s chest, and he couldn’t put a thumb on it. An empty feeling. It ate away at him their entire walk, and when he and Thor inevitably parted ways, it continued to do so.

He’d thought…maybe.

Loki shook his head, stamping down the millions of thoughts firing behind his eyes. He called on his handmaiden to draw him a bath and picked his nicest robe from his wardrobe. The green one, more sheer than opaque, and with the tiny gilded filigree laced throughout it.

He had an agenda to follow through.

 

 

Loki had a brief moment of self-reflection as he stood in front of Tyr’s study. Seeing Thor had waned his drive and reasoning for this. It seemed a much better idea when the image of Thor driving into a soft supple woman was fresh in his mind. But he’d come so far, and Loki wasn’t one to abandon a bit of mischief.

He took a deep breath and steeled himself.

Tyr barely looked up from his scrolls, only lifting his eyes once when Loki softly closed the door behind him. There was nothing unusual in it; it was rare he paid Loki any mind.

“Are you lost?”

Loki adjusted his robe, suddenly very self-conscious about his bare body underneath. Perhaps this wouldn’t work, and Tyr would scold him like a child. Worse yet, he could tell their parents. It would be difficult for him to worm his way out of this if it failed. He’d heard rumors though, of Tyr’s appetite.

“No.”

Tyr looked up, for the first time his attention locked right onto Loki, eyebrows furrowed. Slowly, he lowered his current ledger to steeple his fingers together. Beneath the irritation was something else—curiosity, perhaps. He was clearly vexed as to why Loki would come to him now. They’d only exchanged pleasantries and polite talk at dinners for the better part of a decade.

“Tell me, little Loki, why are you here then?” Tyr’s eyes roamed over Loki’s body, a tiny tick in the corner of his mouth. His gaze turned dark, hungry, and Loki shivered.

“I was told something the other day,” Loki said as he sauntered forward, renewed confidence in his step. He stopped short of the desk’s edge, sitting carefully, and toyed with the neck of his robe until it was obvious that he was bare beneath. “You are to be my husband.”

The air grew still and quiet, and Tyr placed his quill down to lean back in his chair. Loki watched him, looking for any sign of anger. There wasn’t a person in all of Asgard that wanted to be on the receiving end of Tyr’s temper. Himself included. And in his watching, Loki realized that perhaps he wasn’t as heinous as he once thought. He’d grown into his squared features, his blue eyes framed with dark lashes and set beneath thick brows. There was the same crook in his nose as Odin, but it fit his face nicely.

Fueled by bravery and adrenaline, Loki reached out and ran a knuckle along the scruff of Tyr’s cheek. Hair dark, like Baldr. “Is there disappointment in your silence?”

“At one time,” Tyr answered truthfully. He reached up and wrapped a hand around Loki’s wrist, and Loki sucked in a breath. His grip was strong, almost bruising, but he detected no rage in his actions. But, instead, something else.

“And now?”

Tyr snorted back a laugh, released Loki and relaxed into his seat. “That, brother, I am still deciding.”

To Loki’s ears, it was an invitation. He scooted from the desk and slowly, and what he hoped was seductive, to make himself a seat on Tyr’s thighs. Thick, and muscular— a warrior’s build, like Thor. Loki draped his arms over his shoulders and let out a sharp gasp when hands came to rest on his hips. Tyr watched him like a hunter might watch their prey.

Loki leaned in if only to escape that ravenous look. “Is there anything I could do that might sway your favor?”

There was a growl, low beneath Tyr’s breath, it came hot against Loki’s neck and there was a split-second of indecisiveness. Perhaps he’d made a grave miscalculation, and this was a mistake.

No sooner than he could change his mind, Tyr had him in an impressive hold, bruising where his fingers dug in his hips. A man like Tyr only knew how to be rough. That’s what Loki had wanted, right?

A hand left his side, and Loki sighed in relief, but quicker than it vanished, it came to grip firmly at his jaw. Tyr held his head in place, keeping Loki still while his eyes were forced to look upon him. “What could you possibly offer me?”

Loki’s jaws hurt to speak, but he managed, a bit weakly. “Only what is yours.”

The lie felt heavy on his tongue, but he knew it to be a necessary evil. Tyr could never know where his heart truly belonged— not that he was after Loki’s heart in the slightest. And, at the end of it all, Loki belonged only to himself. He couldn’t let Tyr know that either.

Loki grunted as his neck was tilted up, exposing the clean, bare flesh for hungry teeth. Tyr kissed him on his throat, biting and sucking in a way that made Loki’s body betrayed him. His grunt turned into a whine, and then a moan, as Tyr feasted upon him, hungry and unforgiving. Loki was left with nothing to do but hold onto broad shoulders and take it all in stride.

Tyr pulled back, licking at purpling bruise he created. “You are a presumptuous little minx to assume I would want it,” he growled.

All talk. Loki could feel how much he wanted beneath his leathers. He was hard and big, and Loki ground down on his lap to let him know. It earned him nothing but being dumped off Tyr’s lap, and Loki hit the edge of the desk with a sharp gasp. He looked up, on the verge of pleading for forgiveness for his misstep, when Tyr manhandled him around, pushing down until he was bent over a surface littered with documents. Strong fingers curled around the back on his beck, and another tickled its way up his thigh and beneath the hem of his robe.

"Fine then.  If this is what you want," Tyr said. Casual, like he was offering Loki a treat.

The worst part was, Loki did want. His cock was so hard it bordered painful, and his cunt throbbed as Tyr’s finger grew closer to find him wet and dripping. His sucked in a breath as that finger pushed into him without preamble. For the briefest of moments, he missed Baldr’s shy touches. Though, that quickly faded once Tyr began to finger-fuck him in earnest. Talented, and experienced, and what he needed in the first place.

“So eager,” Tyr was saying. Loki’s cheek was already plastered to the wood with sweat, his mouth open and panting fog onto the polished desk; he couldn’t argue. “Couldn’t even wait for our wedding night—had to come to disrupt my work.”

“I’m—ahhh—I’m sorry.”

“No,” Tyr mused, “but you will be.”

He roughly pushed another finger alongside the other, and Loki bit back a sob. There was no scurrying from it; Loki rocked his hips back to take more, his body craving even a third. A follow-up to the promise that he would be sorry. Practically begging him to make it so.

Tyr drew his hand back, yanking Loki up just long enough to rip the robe from his body, letting it pool around their feet before shoving him back down. There would be bruises on more than just his neck, he’d have to wear his winter wardrobe to cover them all. A poor deal for a Jotun, even with his glamor.

Behind him, Loki heard the unmistakable clink of buckles, and a long sigh as Tyr took himself in hand. Loki widened his stance, preparing himself. After it all, he still wanted this— more than he cared to admit. Loki knew Thor would never be so rough. This was only a lesson on how to take it.

Tyr rubbed the head of his cock against Loki, slicking himself on his cunt. A low rumble tremored through him. He wanted nothing more than to touch himself, relieve some of that pressure, but the awkward push of the desk stopped him, and Loki was forced to rock his hips against it.

“Is this what you have to offer?” Tyr asked, slapping his cock against Loki’s entrance. Filthy, and dirty; yet, he felt no shame. “A sweet little hole for me to fuck?”

Loki whined, tears prickly at his eyes. A fear present that he cared not to admit. That everything, the entire structure of his life was centered around his use to Asgard. A prophecy, a symbol, a hole. At least Tyr was upfront about his intentions.

“Yes,” Loki sobbed, pushing back only for Tyr to back away. He choked out another cry. “Please.”

“You said you only just found out you were to be my bride.” 

Loki gritted his teeth. Consort.

Tyr pulled him flush against his hips, his cock sliding thick and hot between his legs. Loki gasped, hands scrambling to fist at all of the precious ledgers, crumbling them in his hands. It didn’t earn him a slap, or a growl; Tyr far too amused with his little toy.

“How long had you known?” Loki asked.

“Since you were a babe brought in from the cold,” He ignored the way Loki tensed and froze. “You were an ugly little thing,” he continued casually, lining himself up once again. There wasn’t time for offense or insult. He slid in, unconcerned with the resistance he met, or the way Loki’s breaths grew into labored heaves. “Not anymore.”

Loki’s face heated, and he took the time Tyr wasted relishing the tight heat that engulfed him, to adjust to the stretch and burn. Baldr’s cock paled in comparison to the monster wedged between his thighs. He hadn’t the time to even consider how Thor might hold up, because the moment of respite ended, and Tyr pulled out to slam back in.

The ability to produce any noise other than strained whines, and shaky moans, was lost to him. Tyr was merciless, holding onto him and bringing Loki back to meet his thrusts pound for pound. It was ruthless and punishing in nature, every drag of Tyr’s cock inside him. Pent up years of aggression toward Loki, the one thing he had no control over. Tears stung at his eyes, and Loki hated, more than anything, how he didn’t hate it all.

“You’ve been waiting for this, haven’t you?”

Loki, unable to respond, reduced to a babbling mess being slammed against a desk, only cried out. For Tyr, it was good enough answer as any. His hand returned to the back of Loki’s neck, holding him down while he fucked him hard and quick with expert rolls of his hips. Each punch provoked an embarrassingly wanton noise from Loki. And when he tried to twist his arm down to take hold of his cock, he slapped away for his troubles.

“You’ll come on my cock,” Tyr growled, the hand on his neck moving further up to painfully twist a handful of hair. He craned Loki’s head up, until his throat was taut and sore, leaning over his body to bite at the tender lobe of his ear. “Won’t you?”

Loki nodded his head the best he could, body shaking with the brute force of Tyr, and the open sobs that now racked through him; his face wet with tears and drool. If he kept this up, it might even be true.

“Good boy,” Tyr said and planted a filthy kiss to the side of his neck.

Oh, that shouldn’t have done what it did. Loki clenched down involuntarily, and the hand in his hair tightened. At once, Tyr’s animalistic grunting became a lot less controlled. His thrusts grew quicker, more erratic, still managing to hit Loki right where he needed him. His own tension built and built, until his vision went fuzzy, black at the edges, literally seeing stars. Loki’s mind nothing but a mantra of more, more, more, more.

It was given to him in earnest; until Loki was sure all of the palace heard his shameful pleasure.

Tyr jerked back, cock slipping free and slapping against Loki’s back. He rutted against him, once and twice, and then Loki felt him spill hot and thick over him. He lay there, breathing heavy, face stuck to a scroll, trying to recollect the jumbled mess in his head.

It wasn’t until Loki tried to stand that he realized he’d came, the evidence dripping down his leg. He stood there blinking, in shock from what transpired. Not one of Baldr’s tender touches had prepared him for this. But he felt drunk off it, and had it been Thor— Loki would have sworn he died and gone to Valhalla.

But alas, it was Tyr who slapped his ass like he was a broodmare.

“What?” he asked, misjudging Loki’s stunned silence for something else. “Did you think I was going to come in you, you little wretch?” Tyr gave a hearty chuckle, picking up Loki’s robe and holding it out for him to slide his arms in before belting it up. It was more demeaning than helpful.

“No,” Loki hissed. Tyr cocked a brow at the audacity of his attitude, but the smug quirk of his lips remained. In another life, Loki might have smacked it off him, but he needed to play the part of subservient betrothed for now. “It’s nothing.”

Somehow, he doubted Tyr had even a single care to his thoughts. Only taking pleasure in observing the way Loki’s wobbled when he tried to walk.

“You should clean yourself,” Tyr said. He sat back at his desk, attention once again on the papers scattered about, some crumpled into balls from Loki’s fists. They were shuffled and stacked back into place as if they weren’t soaked with sweat. “Come by my chambers next time you need to be taken care of. When I’m not busy, of course.”

And just like that, Loki became invisible again.

Loki bristled and tightened his belt. Tyr would one day fantasize of this night, thinking remorsefully on how he let Loki slip from his fingers. He would regret treating Loki so indignantly. 

“Of course,” he echoed. 

Loki tried to run but settled for a brisk pace. Between his legs was much too sore, and he walked funny. Luckily, the halls were dark for no one to see his shame or lack thereof. For what Tyr didn’t know, is that he truly won. Sly a fox, he’d taken what he wanted.

And Tyr had been wrong— he wasn’t sorry.

 

Chapter Text

Loki stayed in bed for days.

He thwarted Baldr’s attempts to pull him from his chambers. He ignored the knocking, the questions, the concern. Fatigue, that was all he claimed. Disregarding the soreness in his muscles, his heart, and mind. Or, the questions and budding realizations about himself that he hadn’t the energy to face.

He used his time, instead, to think on his next move.

Thor was stubborn and unusually guarded as of late. This would require strategy, tactics, a sharp mind, and a certain degree of diligence and cunning wit. Thankfully, all which Loki felt he was blessed with.

It wasn’t until the sixth day that Loki slipped from his room for some much-needed fresh air. He picked a convenient hour where he knew Baldr would be kept away with lessons and Tyr would be otherwise occupied with whatever it was Tyr did.

It didn’t do Loki well to dwell on his eldest brother— with his venomous words dripped in honey, and the memories he wrought.

Absently, he sought out the gardens. A cool breeze combed through them; the aroma of his mother’s flowers sweet against his nose. Loki sat in comfortable silence beneath the shade of a large oak, knees drawn to his chest to act as a shelf for his sleepy head. He watched the servants scurry through the blossomed trails; they were all so busy, without the time to stop and admire the beauty around them.

A pang of sympathy strummed through Loki’s chest. He wasn’t so far off from their position; for he was also brought in to serve the royal family, just in a different manner. But here he could laze and waste away an entire day without anyone to question his whereabouts. He could coop himself for nearly a week, and the worry would eventually wane. He recognized his privilege, but never had he felt so trapped and suffocated in all his years on Asgard.

Loki let out a drawn-out sigh. He needed his mind to stay in a happier space.

Thor was a good place to start. Thor, and how Loki planned to make him fall in love— or at least fall in bed.

It seemed the problem with Thor, was that he felt Loki belonged to Tyr. That, somehow, Loki was Tyr’s property. And Thor was ever righteous in his loyalty, especially to family. It was one of the things that Loki admired most. Though the admiration quickly soured to jealousy when the loyalty strayed from him.

He wouldn’t be as easy to crack as his brothers. Baldr was already practically gagging for it, and Tyr relished anything where he could be in control.

Thor was tricky, but Loki liked tricks.

And, as if Yggdrasil itself heard the yearning of Loki’s heart, Thor came into view around the corner of a golden pillar, hauling a large pack over his shoulder. Loki recognized that get-up, he’d seen it many times when he was younger. Thor was going on a hunt.

Loki’s mopey state vanished, and he sprang to his feet with delight. This was perfect; precisely that catalyst he needed. He only needed to convince Thor to let him tag along.

“Thor!” Loki ran to catch up, quickly falling into step next to him.

Thor startled at first, offering a nervous smile. “Loki,” he greeted. Stiff, but not unkind.

Loki eyed Mjolnir strapped to his hip, and then took notice in how he was dressed. Much too warmly for Asgard, or even Vanaheim, this time of year. He dawned his thick wool wardrobe and his fur-trimmed red cloak. Strange. Loki lifted a brow. “Going somewhere chilly, brother?”

“A hunt.”

“Alone?”

“Aye.”

“Why?” Loki needled, and Thor let out a groan of frustration. They were at the stables now, and Thor side-stepped him to saddle and prepare one of the royal stallions for the trek to the Bifrost, where Heimdall would be sending him…? “Where are you going?”

“You’re being nosier than usual.”

Loki sniffed at that, reaching out and providing gentle pets to the horse’s muzzle. Thor paid him no mind, though the tension in the air had Loki’s hair standing on end. He hadn’t seen Thor in nearly a week, and he racked his brain for what might have caused the rift between them to widen.

Unless, perhaps— Loki froze, his heart seized, and panic slowly spread through him.

Had Tyr told him? They were closer as brothers. Thor sometimes accompanied him to meetings and often they trained together. It was completely plausible.

That had to be it. But what did that leave Loki to do? Apologize? And for what? Thor said himself that he was Tyr’s—though, Loki really wondered if he had known what that meant to Tyr. Because Loki recalled a dull ache between his legs and an awful shame that came with it. And later, when the memory didn’t make him recoil or wretch, Loki remembered how he’d looked back on that night and took himself in hand. Tears hot on his face when he came.

“Loki?” Thor’s voice snapped him out of his melancholy reverie. He looked up to see his brother already mounted on his horse, looking down with great concern. “Are you alright?”

“Yes,” Loki replied easily, a quick recovery. “I was only hoping I might go with you.”

Thor stalled, a pause long enough to poke at Loki’s confidence. “I’m not sure that’s a good idea. Not this time.”

“What would make this time any different from the next? I’ve hunted before, you know. I can be useful with my seidr. It’s not Mjolnir, but—"

Thor chuckled and held up a hand, effectively stopping Loki from his useless babble. “I would never think you anything but useful,” he said softly. “But I am going to Jotunheim.”

Loki paled at the word. His home; his true home. He was but a child the last time Odin had let him tag along on a diplomatic visit. Laufey, his birth father, had been cold and indifferent, barely looking his way. Loki never blamed him; he was a stranger in an even stranger land, he held the hand of the All-father and wore the face of an Aesir.

Never aloud did he admit the hurt it caused him, and never again did he return.

Loki swallowed and squared his shoulders. “So? I would like to go.”

Thor watched him carefully, nodding to the latch on the stable gate. Loki opened it for him, allowing Thor and his steed to trot through. See? He could be useful. Helpful, even, when he wanted to be. And, oh, how he wanted to be of use to Thor.

“You would have to dress warmly and pack your things quickly.”

Loki brightened, perking up with a childlike glee he hadn’t felt in ages. Because there Thor was, looking every bit the golden brother that he loved so much, smiling and inviting him on a hunt. Just like he used to. His plan, falling into action as if the Norns willed it so.

Loki could hardly contain himself.

 

 

 

His heart pounded in his chest, his breath coming out in quick pants as he skidded into his room.

How could he so lucky? To not only have the perfect opportunity with Thor alone, away from Asgard, away from Tyr, where he might convince him he was a worthy match— but also to have Thor agree, after dodging his attempts for years now.

Loki rummaged through his wardrobe, digging out his winter clothes and furs. An excessive amount wasn’t necessary; he was of still of Jotunheim, despite everything. It was likely the frozen lands would feel like home to him. While he collected his neglected hunting gear, Loki thought on what it might be like to wear his natural skin. Would Thor find him hideous? Or—perhaps enticing with exotic beauty?

Maybe, Thor would take him in his true form. A proper melding of the two realms.

“Furs?”

Loki whipped around to find Baldr watching him inquisitively. Such a nuisance. He really should have shut and locked the door.

“I’m going somewhere very cold,” Loki explained; and when he was met with a blank stare, he sighed. “Jotunheim.”

Baldr visibly balked, crossing the room to snatch the fur cloak from Loki’s fingers. As if the simple act alone would make Loki stay in Asgard. “You can’t go to Jotunheim!”

“And why not? Did you forget that’s my home?” Loki snatched it back, petulant and child-like as it was, and stuffed it into his knapsack.

“Yes, but—This is your home. It’s dangerous.”

“Asgard and Jotunheim have a treaty. We are free to cross into their lands.”

“That treaty rides on your safety,” Baldr said seriously, sterner than Loki had ever heard him before. For the briefest of moments, he almost sounded like the prince he was. “If something happens to you, the consequences could be dire.”

“Why would anything happen to me? I have been on many of hunts,” Loki snapped, his hackles rising. He thought better of Baldr. That, save Thor, he was one who had faith in him.

“Alone, in Jotunheim,” Baldr started. He twisted his fingers together, a sign of his nerves. The worry he expressed was sincere. If only Loki could find it endearing.

Though, it raised another question…

Why do you assume I’m going alone?” Loki blinked, packing the last of his things—strategically leaving behind his bedroll. “I’m going with Thor.”

The color drained from Baldr’s face, his mouth falling open to let out a pained, betrayed sound. “What?”

“Thor and I are going to Jotunheim for a hunt,” Loki said slowly. Honestly, what was with him? It wasn’t as if this were some new development, or that Baldr hadn’t done the same countless times. But Loki watched as his brother attempted to piece something together.

All at once, Baldr’s face read of heartbreak.

He wasn’t sure what came over him, or why he did it. Perhaps, maybe, to quell the pathetic look that bore into him. Loki reached out and grabbed at Baldr’s wrist, tugging him forward, and when he was within distance, leaned in and pressed their lips together. It was a chaste thing, but Loki pulled away to find him shell-shocked.

“I’ll be back soon,” Loki promised, and Baldr only nodded. He gathered up his necessities, slinging them over his shoulder with a light grunt. Thor would already be waiting for him at the Bifrost; he’d dawdled too long.

In his haste to leave, Loki missed the way Baldr stood frozen, watching him with an evident, and growing suspicion.

 

 

Jotunheim took his breath away. The moment the Bifrost landed them, Loki was enraptured. It’d been so long; the ice called to him, something shifting beneath his skin and begging to come out. He held onto his glamor, kept his skin peach and rosy, and breathed out through his nose. It was a strange feeling; like he both belonged and was a trespasser.

“Are you alright?” Thor asked. He didn’t mean for the cold. Loki was bundled in layers and his fur cloak was wrapped tight around his shoulders.

“Yes, I think so.”

Thor nodded, but Loki could tell he didn’t believe him. They were a long way from Utgard, the heart of Jotunheim. Even the towering ice spires of Laufey’s palace were invisible on the horizon. Loki wondered if Thor chose this location on purpose, to protect him, or if this was the lair of some ferocious beast he meant to kill and mount.

They trekked through the snowy plains, the wind harsh and unforgiving as they pushed through the resistance. There was little talking to be done. Thor had yelled over the roar of it, telling him that just over the mountain, in the valley, it would quiet again. Loki had to believe him, he wasn’t familiar with the geography of Jotunheim, or the way its land behaved.

As always, trusting Thor turned out to be the right thing to do. The moment they made it down the mountain into the low gully, the wind had receded into a bitter sting and Loki could hear again.

“We should set up camp here,” Thor told him. He slung off his pack and set to emptying it.

Loki followed suit, though his load was much lighter. Thor had packed the bulk of it all, the canvas tent and extra quilts and furs. He pulled out the logs he had picked up before heading to the Bifrost, calling forth his seidr to spark a fire that burned green before red. It would last throughout the night and provided warmth with double the strength a normal fire would.

After that, there wasn’t much left for him to do but bundle up and watch Thor work.

“What will we be hunting?” Loki eyed his pile of traps, all too small for the creatures that inhabited Jotunheim. It was not only her people that were giant.

“Jotun direwolf. I’m after a pelt.”

Loki inched forward from his makeshift seat. The direwolves of Jotunheim were legendary—huge beasts with fur whiter than the snow they lived in. A pelt was worth a fortune, seeing that they were notoriously hard to track and kill. Loki wasn’t much of a huntsman, he never really saw the appeal, but the thought of taking down something as impressive as a direwolf set off a thrill in his bones. Thor would get all the glory, but Thor would also look back on his great accomplishment and think of him. To Loki, that was worth it.

“Do you have a lead on one already?”

Thor sat back, driving the late stake of the tent into the ice with Mjolnir. “Aye. There have been sightings in these parts. I scoped out the surrounding land earlier this week and took a log of some tracks.” Thor grinned, his lips stretched to show his teeth—a spot of sun in the cold dark. “There’s a beast here somewhere.”

His enthusiasm was most contagious. Loki found himself genuinely excited for the hunt, just as he had when he was a boy, and not just at the prospect of spending an entire day and night alone with his brother.

Here he could be just Loki, free of the burdens back in Asgard, and the impending doom of his future.

Loki watched Thor pile the furs and blankets into the tent, setting out his bedroll with enough room for two. He popped his head out of the flap, a thin sheen of sweat on his brow despite the cold. “Toss me your sleeping mat, I’ll get you set up.”

Loki pretended to look in his knapsack, shuffling around the little odds and ends he brought and wouldn’t need. He made a show of frowning before giving Thor an apologetic look. “It’s not here.”

“What?”

Loki emptied the sack’s contents into the snow, giving it an extra shake to reassure it was empty. “I could have sworn I packed it.”

He knew he hadn’t. He’d seen it sitting dusty in the corner of his closet and left it there. Loki couldn’t think of any reason he would need to it begin with. This had all been part of the plan. Yet, why did feel guilty for lying?

Thor sat on his knees; brows drawn together in quiet concentration.

“I’ll just wrap myself in a quilt,” Loki said a bit sadly, batting his eyes. “I don’t want to be a bother.”

“No,” Thor sighed. “No, we can share. It’s too cold.”

It took a lot of power for Loki to keep his smile gracious and not triumphant. He picked at a loose thread on his breeches, keeping his eyes down, afraid the mischievous glint would give him away. The perfect picture of innocence. “Are you sure?”

“Of course, I can’t have you freezing to death. Mother would have my head.”

“I’m sure you’ll keep me very warm," Loki purred, but acting surprised when Thor's cheeks reddened. "For mother," he added thoughtfully.

 

 

 

“There he is,” Thor whispered. They were both hunkered behind a bank of snow and ice, peering over the ledge to witness the direwolf ripping apart a stag. Its maw dripped with blood, red spilling out over the white in a strange artistic glory. “Nervous?”

Loki wasn’t sure—this beast wasn’t like the creatures they hunted and trapped in the Asgard mountains. It was huge, a monster in a land of giants, ferocious and majestic. He looked to find Thor staring at him with a wild twinkle of adventure in his eye, smiling with unadulterated giddiness that set Loki’s heart racing for reasons other than the thrill of the hunt.

“What’s the plan of attack? Go in, hammer ablaze?”

“At first, yes. I’m going to knock it in the head with Mjolnir. Then that’s where you come in,” Thor said. He huddled close, words coming out in frosty breaths that felt warm to Loki’s cheek. “I know he’s big, but do you think you can hold him?”

Loki looked to the direwolf, sizing it up. He was large, yes, but by Jotunheim’s standards, more than likely still a pup. Loki had been practicing his seidr-weaving religiously; he felt confident and strong in his own skill. And he couldn’t discount the fact that the land sang to him, a gentle hum of power present beneath his skin that was otherwise absent in Asgard.

“Yes,” Loki said with certainty.

“Excellent. Once you have the hold, I will slay the beast.”

“That seems pretty cut and dry.”

“It should be,” Thor replied, excitement evident. He reached out and squeezed Loki’s shoulder with a gloved hand, but Loki felt all the weight of it. “Are you ready?”

Loki nodded, setting his attention on the unsuspecting direwolf still shredding the stag beneath its paw. When he called forth his seidr, it felt amplified, powerful and intoxicating. His fingers rolled the wisps of green between them. “After you, brother.”

Thor stood abruptly, leaping over the edge of the snowbank and skidding down it, hauling Mjolnir back and launching her forward. She sang in the air, a whistle that even Loki could hear. He soon followed, attempting to keep his footing down the steep incline until he stumbled next to Thor.

Mjolnir slammed into the side of the direwolf’s head with a sickening crack. The beast barely flinched, raising its head in their direction, a snarl on its muzzle that revealed a mouthful of blood-soaked, sharp teeth.

Direwolves, especially Jotun, were aggressive by nature. A threat wouldn’t be met with fleeing, and this one was no exception, and it began a steady, headfast charge toward them.

“Oh shit,” Thor said with a breathless laugh. There wasn’t a note of actual worry in his tone. Mjolnir came flying back until she smacked into his open palm. “I hope you’re right.”

“I’m always right.” Loki readied his stance, holding his arms out, fingers splayed. His seidr welled in him, swirling like a bomb of energy until ready to be released.

Thor readied Mjolnir. “I hope you’re right about that too.”

Loki cast a powerful wave of his magic, one that sent the ice shattering in its path. The direwolf stopped in its tracks, suddenly enveloped in a green glow, and hovering a few feet off the ground. It snapped its ravenous jaws, dripping with blood-tinted saliva, and struggled against the bind of seidr.

The laugh that bubbled out of Loki couldn’t be stopped. He’d done it. He turned to see Thor staring in wonder and awe, and soon he laughed too.

“This seems almost cruel,” Loki yelled over the wind. “Should I let it go and let you give it a fair fight?”

“If that beast is let loose, it won’t stop until we’re scattered across Jotunheim!” Thor called back, but there was a glint in his eye and a smile on his face. Almost as if he challenged Loki to do it.

“It would make a fine tale!”

“Aye,” Thor agreed. He turned toward the direwolf, still moving helplessly against the force that bound it, snapping and snarling with crazed red eyes. Mjolnir glinted in the Jotunheim’s dim sun when he raised her. “Drop him!”

A smile curled on Loki’s lips and he did just that.

 

 

 

Loki let Thor do most of the hard work when it came to breaking down the direwolf.

The act of skinning was barbaric, and he preferred to keep the contents of his stomach inside his stomach. He busied himself with preparing the meats they brought along for dinner over the fire. Loki wasn’t the best cook, but he was sure it would be more amenable than whatever Thor could do.

Thor came back bloodied and tired, his back stacked with large cuts of hide. Loki had asked him what he did with the rest of the animal and immediately regretted doing so when Thor launched himself into a spiel about the circle of life, vultures, and biodegradation.

Together they sat across from each other, the roaring fire between them, and ate their meal with polite enjoyment. Conversation flowed easy, and it felt…nice. A calm that washed over them, comfortable in all regards. Loki realized he’d missed Thor as his friend, and as his brother.

Perhaps he was staring because Thor looked at him peculiar and then smiled. Hesitating, Loki returned it.

Gods, he loved him.

“What do you aim to do with the pelt?” Loki asked, to change his mind’s focus from wistful musings. “Surely your pockets aren’t so empty.”

Across the fire, behind the dancing lick of flames, Thor ducked his head. “Don’t you think it will make a fine cloak?”

Loki recalled the softness of it beneath his fingers, fine like silk and pristine white. He’d understood immediately why they fetched such a high price in the market, why only nobility ever dawned them. “Of course, it would be beautiful. But red is your signature color. It would be a crime to dye it.”

Thor blinked at him, until the confusion broke and he laughed. “I mean for you to have it.”

Loki stilled, his heart leaping in his chest. He knew his cheeks were red, and he hoped Thor either couldn’t see in the darkness or assumed it was from sitting so close to the fireside. “That would be lovely,” he said, barely a whisper. He didn't trust the steadiness of his voice.

“I thought it would be nice for you to have something from your home,” Thor explained.

“You’re right, I’ll cherish it always.” Loki hadn’t the heart to tell him Jotunheim wasn’t his home anymore, the sentiment behind the gesture was much too touching.

“I was thinking,” Thor continued, but the mirth was gone as he stared blankly in the dark, star-dotted horizon. “It would be a wedding gift. Perhaps you could wear it during your ceremony.”

Just like that, the contents of their dinner curdled in his stomach. Loki swallowed down a lump in his throat, the manifestation of his heartbreak and disappointment. No matter what fantasy he conjured, he knew Thor spoke of his marriage to Tyr.

“Perhaps,” Loki echoed quietly, standing up. He needed to leave. “I think I’ll retire now.”

Thor watched him leave but didn’t move to follow him to the tent. It was nearly impossible to avoid the sinking feeling in his chest. Things had been going so well. They’d fought together, at each other’s sides, just as they were meant to. They’d laughed, traded stories, caught up, and Thor— Thor had looked at him with a warm fondness.

He’d thought, he’d really thought…

Loki wiped a stray tear from his cheek. Oh, how he hated when his body betrayed him. He sniffed back the rest and shucked his cloak off to use as an extra blanket. Strangely, or not strangely, enough, he didn’t feel all that cold. He could comfortably sleep outside the bedroll, but there wasn’t a chance he was going to throw away his last attempt to salvage the night.

Loki climbed in making himself cozy, it was a tight squeeze, even with just him. The thought of Thor nestling beside him almost cleared his brain of any residual heartbreak, leaving only a fog of a different kind of longing. Loki dared not to dwell on it, he could easily get himself into a worse situation. Plus, it wouldn’t do good to tucker himself out before Thor returned.

Time passed differently on Jotunheim; or, at least it seemed that way. Hours ticked by, maybe minutes, Loki couldn’t be sure. All he knew was that it was too long before he heard Thor putter around outside the tent. Longer even, until he heard the rustle of the flap.

Loki stayed very still, feigning sleep.

“Loki?”

Nothing, barely a breath.

Thor sighed, and his cloak dropped to the ground. He sat close, ridding himself of his boots, and seemed to hesitate before pulling back the top cover. Loki stayed frozen, slowing his breathing to a minimum to mimic slumber.

Loki still felt the crawl of eyes on him. And soon he was being nudged gently to the side, while Thor struggled to fit in the tiny bedroll. He let himself be jostled around until there was a solid weight pressed against his back. Thor’s chest, he realized with a quickened beat of his heart.

“Loki?” Thor tried again, voice barely above a murmur. “Whatever I said to upset you, I’m sorry.”

Whatever…? Thor should count himself lucky that Loki was deep in his ruse. He hadn’t the faintest idea what he was even apologizing for. Loki supposed this was his fault— Thor knew he’d sought out Tyr, maybe he thought it was because of some harbored affection?

Maybe, Thor truly didn’t realize that Loki loved him above all others.

Thor didn’t speak again, only let out a soft breath that ghosted against the top of Loki’s head before he placed a kiss there. A small gesture that set his whole body aflame.

Loki shifted, turning in his false sleep, until he was pressed into a wall of muscle, the top of his head tickling Thor’s chin. The heartbeat beneath his palm quickened, and he heard Thor suck in a sharp breath. Loki nuzzled his head into his chest, rubbing his cheek against soft wool, absorbing the warmth even though it left him torrid in the confines of furs draped over them.

Oh, this felt good; unlike any of his prior experiences. Baldr and Tyr hadn’t come close. Loki wanted Thor so deeply and so profoundly, that he felt he could crawl out of his skin.

An innate, animalistic desire in him took over. He pressed himself as close as he could, throwing a leg over Thor’s waist. Pawed at his chest, his shoulders, until he got a grip strong enough to haul himself up. In his surprise, Thor rolled to his back and Loki tumbled with him, straddling him and gasping outright when he felt the firm shape of a cock between his cheeks.

“Loki— what are you doing?” Thor grabbed at him, stopping him from rolling his hips down hard. “Stop this!”

Those words couldn’t possibly register in Loki’s lust-clouded mind. He felt like a cat in heat, so desperate to be held and had. Beyond reason. He tore at his shirt, attempting to rid himself of it, only to be stopped there too. Loki let out a growl of frustration, and it was then that he saw the look of utter fear in Thor’s eyes that the spell broke.

“Stop?” Loki asked; as if he’d never heard the word uttered before. Like he couldn’t comprehend the meaning.

Thor sat up, and for the briefest of moments their chests touched, and Loki ached all over again. A pause buzzed between them, a flash of an instant where Thor looked at him so intently, Loki thought he might actually get what he wanted.

His luck held no such cards; he was easily divested from Thor’s lap.

“What are you doing?” Thor asked. He sounded breathless, confused, among other things Loki wished he could explore. “What has gotten into you?”

Loki blinked and reality began to set in. “I—I thought—”

“No,” Thor growled. “You didn’t think.”

“Oh?” Anger rose in him, taking over all the embarrassment he felt from the cold rejection. How dare Thor accuse him of not thinking? As if this wasn’t the only thing that ever consumed his thoughts. “What didn’t I think about?”

“The consequences— the future. Your arrangement with my brother.”

Our brother,” Loki corrected. “Or am I only counted among you when it’s convenient?”

“That isn’t what I meant.”

“What did you mean, Thor?”

Thor reached out to him, and for once, Loki jerked away. He couldn’t accept that touch, it would do nothing but hurt. It didn’t matter how bad he wanted it.

“You and Tyr,” Thor started, sounding tired and defeated, and very much like he didn’t know how to continue his train of thought.

Loki felt as though he’d been slapped. So, this was about Tyr. He’d thought, perhaps, with Thor’s new penchant for bending maids over bar tops, the subject of pre-conceived purity didn’t mean much to him. Or, was the right to give yourself freely reserved to those bearing Odin’s true blood?

“I’m too sullied for you now?” Loki bit out. “Is that it?”

Thor had the nerve to look taken-back. Confused. “What?”

“You’re the one who keeps reminding me that I belong to Tyr—which, I don’t. Everyone in Asgard, and in Jotunheim, you’re all worried about where and to whom I belong. I am not a thing to be kept.” Loki was seething now, his chest rising and falling with his growing anger.

How many times must he say this?

Thor reached out again, this time taking Loki’s wrist by force, pulling him closer with a small jerk. “Did Tyr lay a hand on you?”

Loki squirmed in his grasp, wrenching himself away to cradle his hand to his chest. Panic drummed within him; the burn of Thor’s fingertips lingered hot on his skin. He felt sick.

Thor hadn’t known.

“What does it matter?” Loki asked weakly.

“Did he hurt you?”

Yes, Loki thought. But what good did it do now? He was in no mood to pacify. In fact, he felt compelled to do the opposite.

“Only when I asked,” he spit out, smug as possible.

The growl Thor let out sounded delicious, and it was there that Loki saw it. Jealously.

That, that he could work with.

Loki stood up, aiming to leave the tent. Thor let out a pained noise, but he didn’t dare look back. He couldn’t stand the thought of witnessing a look of sorrow. Or, worse yet, a look of relief at his leaving.

“Where are you going?” Thor asked. Loki ignored him and pushed through the flap, the overwhelming smack of fresh air knocking his breath away. “Loki,” he called from inside the tent. “It’s too cold, just come back.”

Loki didn’t want to come back. Couldn’t bear the thought of being cramped up with the one thing he wanted most in the world and couldn’t have. This was preferable, and besides, he couldn’t freeze to death even he wanted to.

Dropping his glamour was as easy as shedding his clothes. At once, the wool was too warm, suffocating in the world of snow and ice. And when Thor poked his head from the tent, Loki watched him stumble at the sight of his true face. Blue-skinned, horned, and a fiery red gaze.

“What were you saying about the cold, brother?” Loki let the endearment drip like venom, meant to sting and bite. Meant to cause pain.

He knew how he must look. Like another beast on the horizon, meant to be slain. The relations between their realms had been calmed in his birth, but there would always be the hostility between two worlds so different.

Loki might always wear the face of Asgard, but this was what he would always be underneath.

“Just come back inside.”

“No,” Loki said, knowing well he was being tetchy and irrational. “I don’t think I will.”

Thor vanished, and for a moment Loki thought maybe he’d given up. But he reappeared quickly, tossing a thick, fur pelt at him. “At least sleep on that, if you intend on being stubborn all night.”

Loki begrudgingly laid it out on the ground. If he were truly to be stubborn, he would have tossed it into the fire. He had to admit the prospect of sleeping in the snow was dismal, even as his body yearned to strip bare the layers of clothes he wore and wallow in it.

Thor didn’t wait for an acknowledgment of thanks, which was for the best, because Loki didn’t plan on giving one. He mumbled a polite goodnight and retreated back into the tent.

Loki couldn’t tell what it was that made it so easy for Thor to leave him. The fact that he now knew Loki had given himself to Tyr? Never mind that he did the same for Baldr; that particular tryst would go to his grave. Or, was it the glimpse of his Jotnar heritage— the rigid lines of his skin, and the horns that curved atop his head that made him look every bit the monster he was?

Loki lay quiet on the ground, trying to clear his head of all thoughts. He stared up at the quiet expanse of space, the sky unmarred with false lights leaving only the cosmos shining down, the shimmering edges of an aurora beyond tall mountain peaks.

Maybe Thor wouldn’t agree, but Loki found Jotunheim beautiful.

Chapter Text

The travel back to Asgard was a somber affair.

By the time Thor emerged from the tent, Loki had already shifted back to Aesir skin, packed his bag, and resolutely decided he wanted to discuss nothing about the previous night. Thor was hard-pressed to agree; but when his attempts at conversation were met with silence, he eventually gave up.

Loki couldn’t help that he didn’t fare well under the cruel sting of rejection. He knew he was being stubborn, childish even, but couldn’t muster up the energy to care.

The Bifrost had pulled them up in a vibrant beam of light, sending him home—or, home-adjacent.

They didn’t talk in Asgard either. Not when they stumbled through the Bifrost; not when they mounted the horses waiting on them; not on the gallop back; and not when they parted ways. Thor, on occasion, looked like he might try, but each attempt was quickly dismissed with a sharp glare.

He hurt, but Loki found himself growing used to the ache.

They would forget this trip ever happened. 

 

 

A parcel arrived at his chambers one week later. It was Baldr who answered the door, lugging a big box to the bed where Loki lay draped over the side. He eyed it suspiciously, sitting up and poking at it, as if it might explode. Strange. He hadn’t ordered any supplies recently.

“What’s that?”

Baldr shrugged. “How am I supposed to know?”

The look Loki gave him was bland at best. “Don’t get smart,” he said curtly. A flick of his wrist sent the twine unraveling and he cautiously lifted the lid.

Loki’s breath, pulse, and soul left his body.

Inside the box, folded neatly, was the white fur cloak of a Jotun direwolf. Thor had it commissioned after all. Something in Loki's chest thumped, then ached. For the briefest of moments, he had forgotten the cloak’s purpose as a wedding gift.

He racked his fingers through the fur and wordlessly pulled it out. A piece of paper fluttered from the folds, and Baldr picked it from the floor before Loki could reach it.

I’m sorry, Thor,” he read, frowning down at the little note.

Loki snatched it away, breath caught in his throat as he reread Thor’s poor chicken-scratch over and over.

“Sorry for what?”

“It was nothing,” Loki murmured, dragging his gift to his full-length mirror and tossing it around his shoulders. Thor had been right, it was beautiful. He pinned it closed under his chin, turning this way and that. He couldn’t help but think that the pure white of the fur would complement the blue of his Jotun skin nicely, perhaps even better than the face he wore now.

In the reflection of the mirror, he saw Baldr watching him.

“Nothing,” he echoed. There was a strange dejection in the way it was said. He sat on the edge of the bed, thumbs twiddling in his lap, head hanging low, but eyes ever searching. “It must have been something, for him to fetch you a gift so nice.”

Loki swallowed his pride. “It’s a wedding gift.”

“Oh,” Baldr almost whispered, and then, “I’m sorry.”

It was an odd thing for him to say, but Loki only nodded. Turning back to the mirror, he held out his arms, admiring the way it draped around him. He would wear it at his wedding, bad as it hurt. Tyr likely wouldn’t notice how nice it looked on him, but maybe from the corner, he’d catch Thor’s eye.

If only his plan had worked, then perhaps…

Loki turned to Baldr, who sat upright in attention. “Can I ask you a question?”

“Of course,” he answered, a little breathless. Starry-eyed as his gaze swept over Loki.

“Why did you sleep with me so easily?”

Baldr’s face turned an immediate shade of red. He worried his bottom lip and turned his eyes to the ground, fumbling quietly for a considerable amount of time until Loki huffed impatiently.

“Well,” he started, a private smile forming on his lips. “I always thought it would be us that would marry, seeing that we are closest in age. And, of course…” Baldr trailed off, head lifting to meet Loki’s shocked expression. “I always held a certain affection for you.”

“Oh,” Loki said, blinking away his horror.

Baldr deflated at his response—or lack thereof—but he trudged onward. “I was heartbroken when I learned of your marriage to Tyr.”

Loki turned abruptly, his heart hammering in his chest. He took a deep breath and let it out in a slow sigh. “That makes two of us,” he whispered.

When he caught Baldr’s reflection in the mirror, he was standing, hands balled into fists and hurt written across his features. He looked more like Thor when he was mad, but—why? Loki turned to him; head cocked in confusion.

“Can I ask you a question?” Baldr asked voice strained.

“If you must.”

“Why did you kiss me?”

“What?”

“When you left for Jotunheim. Why did you kiss me?”

Loki opened his mouth and found he had no words. There was something pleading written on his face. It was clear his brother had a preferred answer, one that Loki could technically give him. But it wouldn’t be honest. He found he didn’t have it in him to lie, not this time. Baldr had never shown him anything but kindness; Baldr would never intentionally hurt him. Loki knew the truth would do just that to him, but was it the lesser of two evils? It would scab, and possibly scar, but it would heal. Lying now would only require him to break the wound open again later.

“To shut you up,” Loki said quietly. Shamefully.

Baldr looked as though he’d been smacked, stumbling back until he hit the bed. He didn’t let himself fall but righted his stance and made his way briskly to the door.

“Wait, Baldr—”

“Don’t tell me you’re sorry,” he said, quick and sharp. “Not unless you mean it.”

Loki stayed silent, and Baldr shook his head in understanding.

“Tell me,” he said, taking a step toward Loki. “Would you do it again?”

“Yes.” Loki swallowed hard and then squared his shoulders. Ignored the sting in his eyes. “I would.”

The laugh Baldr gave was hollow, and Loki bristled, suddenly annoyed. “I’m telling the truth.”

“I know you are, Loki,” Baldr said, that broken chasm of a smile still on his face. “For once in my life, I wish that you weren’t.”

The crack in Loki’s armor worsened, it splintered and fractured and left him oddly vulnerable. He wasn’t going to cry; not in front of Baldr, and certainly not for him. The tears came anyway, and he blinked them back and away, refused to let them fall out of sheer spite.

“I don’t know what you want for me,” Loki said. It came out shaky, breathless and stuttering. “I don’t know what you expected.”

“I expected you not to use me,” Baldr snapped. He’d never raised his voice to him before, and Loki found himself flinching involuntarily. There was a fire in his eyes but cushioned with a strange softness. “I know my mistake now.”

So did Loki, but it was only spite and ice that his tongue could spit now. “What’s that?”

“I’m not the one you wanted.”

“No,” Loki said harshly. He wanted Baldr to feel as he did. “You aren’t.”

“Is it Thor?”

He felt a contrary tear escape, rolling hot down his face. “Does it matter? I can’t have him—just as you can’t have me.”

Baldr nodded, letting out another humorless laugh. It sounded like metal on stone to Loki’s ears. “You know, when we were younger, I used to stop the servant boys from calling you a monster—because of your Jotun blood.”

Loki’s eye twitched, and he tried to twist his frown into a snarl. “Let me guess, you regret it?”

“I do—because they were right,” Baldr said; much too calm, and much too sad. “But not because you are Jotun.”

Anger flared, ugly and red. He thought, for a moment, of showing Baldr just how much of a monster he could be. Let out his horns and claws. Freeze him where he stood so that he couldn’t escape the painful wrath that whirled inside him.

But, deep down, Loki knew this was not Baldr’s doing—that he wasn’t wrong.

“Get out,” he growled, baring his teeth. He hoped that was monster enough. Baldr was already to the door, leaving without a spared glance.

Loki fell to bed the moment he was alone. He grabbed the hem of the cloak, bringing it to his cheek. The tears that now flowed freely left it damp, but he continued to nuzzle into it, trying to conjure memories of before—when his life wasn’t falling apart at the seams.

Baldr hated him, and rightfully so. Thor didn’t hate him, but he also didn’t love him. Not in the way Loki wanted and needed. Tyr only wanted him for a fuck and an heir.

But at least that was something.

 

 

 

“Loki,” Tyr said, looking up from the top of a scroll. At his desk again, the same one that he’d bent Loki over just weeks ago. It felt like a lifetime. “I’m busy.”

That didn’t deter him. Tyr was always busy, and yet he seemed to do absolutely nothing of importance. If Loki knew him, he’d welcome the distraction he was offering. So, he entered anyway but left the door ajar.

The thing about Tyr’s study was, it was situated in the perfect location of the castle. One large window overlooked the gardens, letting a pleasant fragrance waft in on windy afternoons. The other, on the opposite side of the grand room, overlooked the training ground, providing entertainment in droughts of boredom. The only downside, Loki supposed, was the onslaught of warriors that would trek down the halls after a busy day in the arena.

Not that this mattered; not at all.

“Loki,” Tyr warned, but his gaze was curious. Dark in the way it watched Loki’s hands come to his neck, loosening the buttons at his collar as he walked.

“Do you want to fuck me or not?” Loki was in no mood to play the nervous wife; he didn’t care for the repercussions of speaking out of turn to his future king and husband. In fact, he welcomed them—and judging by the cruel twist of Tyr’s lips, so did he.

Tyr stood slowly, pacing around the desk like a predator stalking prey. Calculating, methodical. But Loki was no common hare in a trap. He stood his ground, fingers continuing to strip himself of his shirt, which he tossed in the floor, leaving him bare-chested and feeling small next to the towering height and bulk of his intended.

“So bold,” Tyr admonished, coming to stand before him. He reached out, his calloused fingers warm to the touch and spanning the width of Loki’s sternum. “Where did this come from, little Loki?”

It’s always been there, Loki wanted to say, but refrained.

Instead, he focused on the scorch of Tyr’s hand on his chest; focused on keeping his breathing even. If he wanted boldness, Loki could surely deliver. He took ahold of Tyr’s wrist and tugged his hand down toward his belly and the waistline of his pants.

“Well,” Loki asked with a raise of his eyebrow. “Do you?”

Tyr answered him by curling a fist into the hem of his leggings and hauling him close. A growl beneath his breath as he latched onto Loki’s neck with a painful, sharp bite. Loki let out a whine, tilting his head back for more while a hand weaseled into the front of his pants, grabbing at his half-hard cock and squeezing.

“Is this for me?” Tyr smirked when he slipped further back, finding him wet. He rubbed at the entrance of his cunt with the flat of his finger, just enough to gather slick. “No, but this is. Isn’t it?”

Loki couldn’t protest if he wanted to. A full-bodied shiver wrecked through him when Tyr pushed in knuckle-deep, and then bullied a second alongside it. His knees quaked, legs almost giving out, and Loki found himself lurching forward to find a hold on Tyr’s arm, keeping him upright and steady

“Please,” Loki said, voice hitching when Tyr hit a spot inside that made his vision blur. “Let me—”

“Why should I let you do anything?” Tyr growled. The hand that wasn’t currently fucking Loki came to wrap around his throat, applying a pressure that made him choke out a raspy cough. “I told you not to bother me when I was busy.”

Loki tried, and failed, to apologize; his vision now blurring in something other than pleasure. He clawed at the hand around his neck, wheezing out ragged breaths. It was the only thing that held him upright, his legs too weak to support him.

Tyr was up to three fingers, a tight burning stretch. It felt both overwhelming and perfect; too much, and just enough. Loki tried to rock down on them, but the barrier of his pants and the awkwardness of the angle allow much room for control.

“Indulge me, little Loki,” Tyr whispered, heavy with unspoken intent. He eased his hand from Loki’s neck. “Tell me what you wish to do.”

Through a haze of coughs and chokes, Loki regained his ability to breath. He let his eyes flicker to the half-opened door.

“I wish to ride you,” he attempted to purr, words coming out a little too rough. Then he turned his attention back to Tyr, a pleading pout on his lips. “Let me ride you.”

Loki tightened his fingers against the biceps they clung to as Tyr slipped his fingers free of his aching cunt.

“What makes you think you can do such a thing?” Tyr asked, a bit insulting. It seemed he didn’t believe Loki capable of such a feat. Not that it stopped him from unfastening his breeches and pulling out his cock, thick and monstrous in his hand.

Loki’s mouth watered at the sight, perhaps he had good reason to doubt him. His body tensed at the mere thought of sinking down on it.

Swallowing down all his apprehension, Loki squared his shoulders. “You don’t think I can?”

“We’re going to find out.”

Loki could only watch, transfixed, as Tyr kicked off his boots and pants, leaving himself in only his loose day shirt. He knelt on the ground and, oh, that was a sight to behold. For a brief moment, Loki allowed himself to wonder what it might be like to shove his cock in Tyr’s mouth.

The daydream didn’t last long. He was tugged to the floor and stripped of his pants with aggressive tugs. Tyr laid back on the hard ground, unfazed by the uncomfortable flagstone—for Loki, his knees already ached.

“Well,” Tyr said, settling back with his hands behind his head to prop himself up. His cock was hard, standing at full attention, looking every bit as menacing as the man it was attached to. “Ride me.”

Loki swallowed hard and, with shaky legs, straddled his brother’s waist. He felt the weeping head of Tyr’s cock slip against the sore edges of his cunt, and he reached down to take ahold of it, guiding it to where it needed to be. Loki closed his eyes and sank down, breath caught in his throat. Even Tyr wasn’t immune to the tight heat around him, groaning as Loki’s body took him so completely.

Fuck, he was big. He’d never give Tyr the satisfaction of saying so.

Loki didn’t let it take long for his body to adjust. He leaned forward and planted his hands against Tyr’s chest, raising his hips up, feeling the drag of a hot cock inside him and shivering, arms nearly giving out. He rocked back down; felt like his breath was punched from him.

Then, he did it again; and again; and again.

He found a rhythm, fucking himself on Tyr, who watched on with a deep crease in his brow; his mouth opening in sharp gasps every time Loki rocked down just right. There was almost a thrill in it; a power he couldn’t explain. And soon his own moans became enthusiastic and genuine with every slap of skin.

Loki found himself so caught up in mounting Tyr, that he almost didn’t hear the tell-tale sounds of footsteps from the hall.

He knew there were to be some causalities in this endeavor, that one or two Einherjar would see him in such an intimate and compromising position. Most passed by without a backward glance—the residents of the palace knew how to mind their business when necessary. The rest turned away with red cheeks when they caught sight of the two princes.

Thor stopped in his tracks.

Tyr chose that moment to grab onto Loki’s hips, holding him up and steady for him to thrust up with powerful legs. His pace was brutal and relentless, and when Loki’s mouth dropped open in a soundless moan, it was involuntary.

He didn’t look away from the door; didn’t look away from Thor who watched with silent horror and a sweaty brow. Loki wondered, in the midst of his pounding, if Thor’s face was red from exhaustion or something else—and what that something else was. Embarrassment? Anger? Lust?

Only when Loki took himself in hand and began to stroke, did Thor turn away and quickly vanish from the hall.

He took great pleasure in closing his eyes, picturing Thor’s eyes on him, and coming all over Tyr’s chest.

 

 

 

Loki found himself in Tyr’s company the very next day. He cut the demeaning banter and went straight for what he believed was his. It was all the same to Loki, he still burned bright on the memory of Thor’s face watching him. That anger and jealousy he saw there, and how it had sparked a twist in his cursed plan.

It served Thor right. This was what he wanted—for Loki to be chained to his tyrant brother, to be fucked just to be fucked. That’s what they all thought he deserved; or, at the very least, thought that’s what he wanted.

Loki had cornered Tyr in the library and flirted loosely and just long enough to get shoved against the bookcase detailing Vanir magic—which so happened to be located very close to the text on Vanir melee.

And, if Loki had overheard Thor discussing a research trip for just that—well, it was his own prerogative.  

Tyr’s thrusts were shallow between his legs, and his hands were clammy with sweat where they gripped his hips. They were only half-dressed, pants pulled to their knees, and Loki held his tunic between his teeth to save it from a mess and to muffle out the sounds of his moans. His cheek pressed painfully against the shelving, each forward jolt of his body knocking books loose and to the ground, creating holes where he could see next aisle over.

It wasn’t long until Loki caught a glimpse of golden hair, and then, blue eyes narrowed to furious slits and staring straight past the book in his hands—straight toward Loki. Thor’s nostrils flared, his face tinted pink. The poor thing.

Loki dropped the hem of his shirt from his mouth and gave a particularly filthy moan. Tyr soon slapped a hand over his face and shut him up, but the damage was done. He could make out Thor’s heaving chest, and his knuckles were white where he gripped the book in his hand. He probably had enough strength in those arms to rip that ancient text in half.

Fuck, with Thor’s eyes on him, he was close. He reached down and wrapped his hand around his neglected cock, bobbing between his legs, fisting it to jerk in quick movements. Just enough to send him over the edge.

“I’m coming,” Loki panted out. Tyr didn’t care, he never did. This was for Thor’s ears. “I’m—ahh!”

Then, he was coming, over his knuckles and over the books and floor, careful not to spill on his trousers. When he looked back up, Thor was gone, but it didn’t matter. Thor knew that Loki knew that he’d stayed too long. That he’d listened, and probably watched, Loki get fucked to completion.

There was no turning back now.

He barely registered when Tyr made his final grunts and pushed into him, only to pull out and come between his legs. Loki just looked down in annoyance at the mess dripping on his pants.

“Be more careful next time, would you?” he groused, wrenching himself from Tyr’s grasp.

Tyr chuckled and gave him an uncharacteristically playful slap to his rear. “Use your magic.”

“Seidr,” he corrected, and flicked his wrist, every drop of evidence vanishing. Easy enough, but it was the principle.

“Of course,” Tyr replied, mockingly so. “Now, I must get back to work.”

Loki gave a noncommittal hum and shrugged his shoulders, fumbling with the fastenings of his trousers. He didn’t care what Tyr had to get back to; he was too busy riding off the high of his success. Plans were a lot more fun when there was no endgame—when the only thing he wanted was to make Thor seethe in jealousy.

Before leaving the library, Loki picked up the book that had been haphazardly tossed to the floor and tucked it beneath his arm.

 

 

 

Tyr took him in the bathing chambers days later. Water sloshed around them, spilling onto the marble with every bounce of Loki in his lap.

They had their own private baths, of course. But Loki happened to know Thor preferred the big communal pools after a hard training session. Any unsuspecting passerby would flee at the sight before them, running in embarrassment.

Not Thor. He stood breathless in the door, eyes wide and shocked, but unable to look away from Loki. Tyr, the fool, was none-the-wiser; his back turned toward the door and backed against the ledge of the pool where he sat and blissfully enjoyed the ride on his cock.

Loki squeezed his fingers into Tyr’s shoulders, mouthing at the juncture of his neck while his eyes stayed locked with Thor. The distance was palpable, but Loki could still tell there was a distinct bulge in his training breeches, one that wasn’t there before.

He smiled wickedly and bit into Tyr’s flesh. Loki hoped it was Thor who felt it.

 

 

 

“I think you dropped this a while back.”

Thor spun around, face white like he’d seen a ghost or worse. Loki had a feeling he fell into the category of worse.

“What?”

Loki held out the book from the library. It’d been weeks ago, and Thor had caught him and Tyr in an unfortunate amount of compromising positions. Each time, Thor lingered a little longer. He never touched himself, never said a word, and was always gone by the time Loki crawled from beneath Tyr.

This was the first time they’d been alone, and adrenaline pumped through him. Loki felt giddy, mad with it all.

Thor eyed the book suspiciously and snatched it up. “Thanks,” he mumbled and made to side-step him. Loki only stepped in his path, sufficiently blocking him.

“Where are you going?”

“Why?” Thor growled, trying again to evade the ambush. “So, you can make it a point to—to—”

“To fuck my husband?”

“He’s not your husband!”

Loki pretended to be taken-back, placing a delicate hand over his chest, mouth hanging open in false surprise. “Is he not? You’re the one who was so adamant that I belonged to him.”

Silence. Loki watched Thor’s jaw tick and his eyes narrow, his gaze just somewhere past Loki’s head. Far away, and so, so close.

“Fine, Loki. Whatever you say. Can I go?”

He tried not to smile too smugly, and moved, giving Thor space to brush past him. Their shoulders knocked and for just a moment, Loki was a boy with a crush again. He shook that away immediately, steeling himself for one more proposition.

One more attempt.

“Oh, Thor?”

Thor stopped, hesitating, before turning around. “What?”

“I plan on visiting Tyr tomorrow, in his private chambers,” Loki said slowly. If Thor felt anything by the comment, he didn’t show it. “In case you want to steer clear.”

“Right,” Thor said, and Loki saw the bob of his throat as he swallowed. “Right, okay.”

Loki grinned and spun around on his heel; hands clasped tightly behind his back.

One more attempt.

Chapter Text

Loki found it safe to conclude that his plan had gone absolutely haywire.

If someone to ask him what exactly his vision was, he’d probably have to shrug and laugh. Jealousy, hurt, and confusion clouded his already hazy judgment. Looking back, what had he been trying to accomplish?

How did he end up here? In Tyr’s chambers, stark naked and on his hands and knees.

Why had he all but invited Thor?

Tyr pulled him back, flush against the cock already buried deep inside, and that had been for some time. He was growing used to that sensation, even quite enjoyed it. A large hand soothed up his spine, cradling the base of his neck and hauling him upright and against a hard flank of muscle. Tyr used his new position to press hot kisses to his neck, and Loki mewled for them.

Better yet—why did Thor accept?

In the doorway, Thor hovered, silent and shocked. This was no happenstance; he’d been there too long. The least Loki could do was provide a show. He kept his eyes on Thor, raising a hand to his mouth and licking his palm with the flat of his tongue, and reaching down to tug at his cock.

“Brother,” Loki said breathlessly. Thor jumped, but it was Tyr who acknowledged him with a grunt. With the hand that wasn’t otherwise toying with himself, he winded back to tug at the strands of dark hair, detaching Tyr from his neck and directing his attention toward the door. “We have a visitor.”

“Thor,” Tyr drawled, drunk off getting his cock wet, he didn’t seem mad at all. In fact, just the opposite. Delighted. Thor, on the other hand, looked like he was just five seconds from sprinting away. “Did you need something?”

Not once did Tyr cease fucking Loki, and Loki could tell he wasn’t even close to being finished. His thrusts were too timed and forceful, his breathing still even, but not coherent enough to realize Thor had been watching.

Thor’s jaw worked, open and closed, but no sound came out for some time. “No, I should—I should go.”

“Nonsense,” Tyr said and pushed Loki back to his hands. The bed creaked obscenely under their shifting combined weight. “He’s good entertainment when he begs. If you know how to fuck him just right.” Tyr used that opportunity to adjust his angle, pounding into Loki’s cunt with brutal thrusts, hitting it just right that Loki had no choice but to scream into the bend of his arm.

Loki weakly lifting his head, just enough so that his eyes met Thor’s. He wasn’t running, that was good. But the burning jealousy beneath his golden skin crackled like lightning. Yes, that’s right. That’s what he wanted.

“More,” he muttered, and Tyr pushed in deep, buried himself to the hilt and leaned closer.

“What was that?”

“More,” Loki repeated. He struggled to push himself back up on his hands, arms nearly buckling. It wasn’t a request for the brother mounting him; Thor knew that if the tick in his jaw was anything to go by.  

“Did you hear that, brother?” Tyr asked, a strange jovial lift in his voice. Loud, and not directed at him. “He wants more.”

Loki watched at Thor processed the situation. Honestly, he thought he was going to have to work harder at convincing Tyr to let Thor join—if Thor wanted. Though, judging by the unmistakable bulge between his thighs, he wanted.

“How many cocks do you suspect he could take?” Tyr asked, and this time he pulled out and slammed back in. Loki whimpered, twisting his hands in the quilts beneath him, and his body responded in earnest to that query.

“I don’t know,” Thor said quietly, barely a whispered noise in the background of slapping skin. But then something changed on his face, a sort of red-flushed bravado presenting itself. A confidence that was shaky at best. “We should ask him.”

Loki’s body shook at the simple implication that he even had a choice and that one of those options could include Thor. He wasted no time in answering. “Two,” he panted, driving his hips back to meet Tyr’s thrusts, letting him know he meant business. “I can take two.”

Tyr smirked, slapped Loki’s thigh. “You heard him.”

Thor took a hesitant, questioning step forward. Obviously afraid that he’d read the room wrong, that he was going to overstep and be punished or shamed for his desire to join his brother’s in something so intimate and filthy.

Loki reached out a hand, curled his fingers, beckoned him forward.

He followed, unable to resist. Poor, loyal Thor, so at odds with his own desire. What he might do once he could have a taste of taking what he wanted. Something selfish. He placed a knee on the edge of the bed, thought on it, and then crawled to meet them in the center.

Loki’s mouth watered at the sight of him straining against his leggings. For once, he felt allowed to touch, so he leaned as close as he could and nuzzled. He could smell the scent of him, could feel how big he was. A cock to match Tyr. Vaguely, he remembered how it felt, hard against his ass, and he now craved it elsewhere.

“Take his mouth,” Tyr grunted as if he read Loki’s mind. “I’ll make this wanton little beast moan around your cock.”

Thor leaned back, taking his warmth with him. Loki tried not to pout—but, then his hands were coming to undo his laces.

“Are you sure?” Thor asked. His eyes never left Loki, waiting for an answer.

“Go ahead,” Tyr answered.

But it wasn’t until Loki nodded minutely and opened his mouth, presenting his tongue, that Thor pulled himself out.

It was a glorious sight. Sure, Loki had sneaked a peek in the baths; or on hot summer days when they swam in Asgard’s lakes; or changing in each other’s company when they were younger. None of those instances could compare to seeing it hard, red and leaking so slightly at the tip. Thicker thanTyr, though not as long. A fine cock that Loki ached to have in his mouth; it could only taste as good as it looked.

Loki tried not to let the moan that escaped him sound too eager when Thor gave a shallow thrust inside. He didn’t have experience in this, which he supposed had a bittersweet irony. All this preparation and Thor took his mouth first. But Loki found he couldn’t complain, not when he instinctively sucked on the head and Thor wrapped his hand in his hair.

“How does he feel?” Tyr asked. “I haven’t had a chance to try out that pretty mouth.”

“Good,” Thor croaked out, and he sighed a bit breathlessly. “Perfect.”

Neither of them stirred, each brother buried in either end of him. A strange feeling curled within Loki, something akin to both dread and excitement.

It was Tyr that moved first, pushing in hard so that Loki lurched forward, nearly choking on the cock in his mouth. He could barely regain his composure before it happened again. Sensing his dilemma, Thor leaned back so that he wasn’t so hard to take when Tyr regained his earlier momentum.

Loki found he didn’t even care, though his throat burned, and his cock ached. He was in Valhalla, and his eyes watered with the crushing realization that he was finally with Thor. A strange, roundabout way of arriving to that point—but he was there.

They entered a push-and-pull rhythm. Loki’s mouth was stretched on Thor’s cock with every harsh fuck of Tyr behind him. He could do nothing but brace his hands on the mattress and take what they gave him. Worse yet, Loki wanted, so he took it greedy and desperate.

It worked, his asinine plan.

But if anything threatened to ruin it—it was the way Thor’s eyes never left him. That awed expression every time Loki gagged and drooled, moaned around him. The way he didn’t use the hand in Loki’s hair for force, but to anchor himself.  

Loki admitted he was also guilty. He stared right back. Tried to tell him something he could never do with words, though he’d tried.

For several, long moments, it was only the two of them on that four-post bed.

Then Tyr grunted, pulling out to slap his wet cock on Loki’s back, painting it white.

“You don’t have to pull out,” Tyr panted. “Go ahead.”

Loki glanced up with pleading eyes. He pushed forward on his own, taking as much as he possibly could until his eyes watered. Gods, this was all he wanted. He wanted every last drop. The only one to spill inside him.

Tyr had already laid back, exhausted on the bed. He couldn’t see when Loki pulled back, bringing a hand to wrap around the base of Thor’s cock. That touch sent a shudder through him, and his mouth opened in a silent cry and he came into Loki’s waiting mouth. Thick and salty, but Loki drank him down.

Thor fell back on his haunches, his blonde hair darkened with sweat, sticking to forehead and neck. He watched with great heaves of his chest, as Loki leaned up took himself in hand. It didn’t take long, not while his gaze stayed locked with Thor.

He was barely finished, lust-addled brain so close to tipping into insanity. He wanted to go to Thor, to plaster himself against him. Feel those arms. Skin-to-skin like back in Jotunheim.

But Tyr pulled him back, sending him toppling against the bed, and into the crook of his arm. Loki startled, feeling an arm wrap around him and hug him close. Somehow, this felt worse than anything else he’d done. Tyr never held him—but Loki realized at once what it really was.

A show of possession.

That Loki was his, no matter that is was Thor’s seed in his belly.

“That was fun,” Tyr commented, a strange edge to his voice. “He seemed to like it.”

Perhaps one day, Tyr would stop speaking like he wasn’t in the room. Loki frowned and flinched when he was tugged closer into his side.

Thor just watched him, a silent horror set in. “Aye, it seemed so.”

“You can join us again. If I’m feeling up to it.”

A weak nod, and a stretched silence. Loki could feel the tension building beneath Tyr’s skin; he was quickly growing tired of this game and Thor’s presence.

“Leave us now,” Loki said quietly. And then— “Please.”

“Of course,” Thor stumbled, tucking himself away and scrambling to tie up his breeches. “I’ll see myself out.”

“Please do,” Tyr commented drily. He pressed a sickening kiss to the top of Loki’s head.

Loki watched as Thor left, only glancing over his shoulder once with sorry eyes. There was an uneasiness in his stomach, the feeling one got before a bad fall. The second the door shut, a heavy slam that echoed through the room, Loki attempted to pry himself from Tyr’s grasp, only to be held tighter.

“Don’t think I didn’t notice, little Loki,” he growled, hot into his ear, then snapped a sharp bite to his lobe. “You aren’t as clever as you think.”

“I—” Loki started, but closed his mouth. What was the point in spinning in a lie? He could say he was sorry, but he wasn’t. He could say he didn’t know what he was talking about, but he did.

“I do hope you got it out of your system.”

He hadn’t.

Chapter Text

Only when Tyr fell asleep, Loki still locked in a crushing embrace, was he able to pry his way free and escape. He found sanctuary in his chambers, shutting the door heavy and leaning against it with giant, heaving breaths.

Oh, this was bad. This was very bad.

Loki pushed himself off the door, content that Tyr wasn’t going to burst through or send an Einherjar to drag him back kicking and screaming.

He paced the length of his room, back and forth, back and forth. Loki had been known to get into one or two weaselly situations, but always found a way out. This could be no different, he reasoned. Though he had to admit, he’d really stepped in it.

The pacing didn't work. He flung himself to the bed, burying his face into his furs and tried to think harder.

He could go to mother and father—lie and say Tyr took him unwillingly. No, that wouldn’t do. They likely wouldn’t care, not with the mindset they had regarding Loki’s personal wellbeing and sense of belonging.

He could go to Thor—confess everything and beg for him to convince said mother and father to abolish his arrangement with Tyr. No, that’s wouldn’t do either. Thor had made it very clear he respected the prophecy and all it entailed. Even if that meant a lifetime of adhering to Tyr’s whims.

He could go to Tyr—tell him that he was being delusional. That Loki held no fancy for Thor. He was utterly and completely devoted to him. No, that definitely wouldn’t work. Loki, silver-tongued as he was, couldn’t spin a lie that convincing. Perhaps he could convince him to share though, he did seem more than willing just earlier.

He put a pin in that one.

He could go to Baldr—No, what was he thinking? That was laughable. Though, he couldn’t deny he almost missed him. Loki hadn’t realized he considered Baldr a companion and friend until he was gone. That, in itself, was most troubling.

Frowning into his pillow, he quickly realized that he had no one to go to.

Loki rolled over and stared at the ceiling.

He only had himself, his one true alliance; and he had to admit that even that was questionable.

The only thing left to do was run.

 

 

 

Running away wasn’t as easy as the old tales their mother used to share.

There was no quick pack of a knapsack, heading off into a forest and stumbling upon a great adventure. This required special planning. Where was he to go? Who was he to be? Surely, he couldn’t be Loki. To be quite honest, he didn’t think he wanted to be.

Loki was a pawn and a tool in the grand plan of two kingdoms.

He would be Loptr, retreat back to Jotunheim to live in his true form, practice his seidr and grow powerful enough that no one would ever dare to challenge him. He’d live on the mountain range, far from Utgard. He’d use his hunting techniques taught to him by Thor. He would survive, become a great myth. The small Jotun in the white cloak on the mountainside.

It was all a great story, really.

In the dead of night, he sometimes weaved another.

A story of a huntsman who would track down this witch of the wasteland, only to find it to be his lost brother. Thor would be angry of course, for Loki leaving as such. He’d forgive him though, coming to understand Loki’s difficult decision. In turn, Thor would be forgiven too, and they would finally be free to love one another as they should.

Of course, that required Thor to love him at all—and Loki couldn’t be so presumptuous. He still wasn't able to shake the way Thor looked at him that night on Jotunheim, or the when he joined his little game with Tyr. There would always be that seed of hope, but Loki knew better than to water it.

He needed to push these thoughts aside, for now, focus on the present.

Tonight was the night he left, and he’d already slipped a letter beneath Baldr’s door. A heartfelt thing filled with apologies and excuses. It was the very least Loki owed him, and by the time his brother found it, he’d be gone.

But first—he must swipe some food for his journey.

Loki creaked open the door to the kitchens, peering around the empty room. No cooks, no servants, no brother’s fucking pretty maidens.

As quickly as he could, he made his way to the pantry, shoving loaves of bread into his sack, cloth-wrapped cheese, and dried meats. Things that would hold longer than the fresh fruits he eyed on the counters. Once satisfied in his selection, he snuck from the pantry, closing the door softly behind him. Freezing when he heard an obnoxious clear of a throat.

“Thor,” Loki said casually; like he wasn’t at all suspect. He turned to find Thor standing by the island, arms crossed over his chest like an irate mother. Loki made a show of looking around, blinking with false innocence. “All alone?”

“What are you doing?”

“Midnight snack,” Loki replied, giving the satchel bag a light tug. “I’m awfully hungry.”

“What are you doing?” Thor repeated, not at all amused with Loki’s charade. He narrowed his eyes at the sack, and then to Loki’s face, and then to…his stomach?

Loki self-consciously moved a hand over his belly, realized Thor’s assumption and laughed out loud. “Oh, no, I’m not—seriously, Thor? You think I would be that foolish?”

Thor’s face reddened and he stammered an ineloquent response, suddenly flustered. “You seem to be very tied up with your betrothed lately.”

Loki’s laughter fell from his lips in mere seconds. When would the sons of Odin stop underestimating him? He’d let Tyr put a cock in him, actually rather enjoyed it on several occasions, but he’d never put an heir. He was a sorcerer, after all. His body did nothing he didn’t want it to do.

“I hadn’t planned to do this so soon,” Loki sighed dramatically, lifting the satchel from over his chest and placing it carefully on the counter. “But here you are.”

He took a step toward Thor, and Thor fumbled back, bumping into the edge of the island. It was a strange sight to see his brave brother cowering at the advancement for someone as slight as him. Loki found he rather enjoyed it. And, whatever Thor was expecting, whether it be a strike or a spell, it certainly wasn’t an embrace. He tensed under Loki’s hold before melting into it and wrapping those strong arms around him in return.

Loki sopped up every once of warmth he was allowed. All his sharp edges dulled at that moment, smoothing out into something soft.

“Brother,” Thor whispered into his hair.

Loki only shushed him, not wanting to taint such a nice, tender moment between them.

“Goodbye, Thor,” he whispered at last, when he felt his face dampen the soft fabric beneath his cheek.

Thor snatched his wrist when he made to pull away. Loki met his eyes in a sharp jerk of his head. He expected to find anger, but only found a sad, pitiful heartbreak. That was infinitely worse. 

“Goodbye?”

Loki hesitated. Thor could run and tell father or mother his plan, stop it before it ever saw fruition. He needed a fix, and fast. “Metaphorically,” he replied confidently.

“Metaphorically?” Thor echoed, not sounding at all convinced.

“What are you? A mocking jay now?”

Thor ignored his venom, eyes narrowed in a scrutinizing glare. “What are you planning?”

“I plan to marry Tyr,” Loki spat. Thor’s face fell in an instant; he only wished it were satisfying. “And whatever is between us has to cease to exist. You can’t join us, you can’t watch me, you can’t—” Loki sniffed back his tears. “You can’t.”

“If that’s what you want,” Thor replied, defeated and grim.

Anger flared within him, burning hot against his icy heart. Thor would so readily accept this? A coward was all he was. Loki knew, he knew, that Thor loved him too. No more fantasies.

“No one has ever cared what I wanted!” Loki snapped. In his fit of rage, he pushed Thor hard against the chest, but he didn’t budge, already pressed against the kitchen island. Loki pushed again, and this time the flat of his hands turned to fists. “No one has ever once asked me!”

Thor didn’t stop him from pounding against him, wearing an expression of such sorrow that it curdled the pain inside his gut into something sour. He knew the meager throws of his fists did no damage against Thor, but at that moment, he wanted Thor to hit him back. He needed something, anything, that wasn’t sympathy.

“Fight me!” Loki pleaded, and slammed a weak fist into his chest. He cried now, fat tears rolling down his face, voice wet and broken with hiccups. “Fight me!

Finally, Thor moved into action, but it wasn’t with the aggression Loki craved. He gently took hold of Loki’s wrists, halting their relentless frenzy, and held them still.

“What do you want?”

Loki sniffed, tried to shrug into his shoulder to wipe the wetness from the corner of his eye. He didn’t know how to answer. Wasn’t even sure what good it would do if he was for once honest. Thor held his attention with his serious gaze, eye searching Loki’s face for any sort of crooked answer.

He couldn’t possibly say it, so he leaned forward and pressed their mouths together. It was quick, chaste, but when he rocked back to the flat of feet, Loki was breathless.

Electricity crackled between them, a static that sent his hairs on edge.

Thor dropped his arms and they fell limply to his side. Loki was sure the next move would be to shove him out of the way, to abandon him in his weakest moment like he’d done time and time again,. Bound with a loyalty to a decree made long ago by neither of them. But instead, he took Loki’s face in his hands and surged forward, kissing him ravenous and raw.

Loki opened up, the feeling of Thor’s lips on his setting a different kind of flame ablaze. He let Thor lick his way inside, let him consume every inch that Loki gave, with tongue and teeth and firm tugs of his hair. A dam broke, and the water was dangerous and rapid.

Thor took hold of him, hauling Loki up so that he could easily wrap his legs around Thor's waist. Firm hands kneaded where they held him, and when Loki rutted closer into the hungry kiss, he could feel an unmistakable hardness. One that wasn’t his own.

“If this is goodbye,” Thor panted against his mouth, “let us make it a good one.”

Loki was inclined to agree.

Thor turned them, dropping Loki onto the counter. They made do with the limited space, unwilling to break apart long enough to properly divest themselves of their clothing. In the end, Loki ended up with his pants hanging from one of his ankles, and Thor with his pulled down past his thighs.

Thor reached between them and ran his hands along Loki’s cunt, already dripping and wet in anticipation. The touch made him shiver, clenching and tensing, wanting nothing more than to be filled by the fingers so sweetly caressing him. Loki couldn’t be disappointed when Thor drew back, taking with him his warmth. Not when he used a now-slick hand to stroke himself. The sight alone was enough to make him moan something needy and desperate.

Loki had believed Thor’s cock to be large in his mouth, but it was nothing to the stretch of it inside him. He reached out and grabbed at Thor’s shoulders, digging his nails into the meat of them, knocked his head against Thor’s and panted as he slid home.

“You feel so good,” Loki sobbed. It was such a silly thing to say, but the only sentiment his brain allowed him to process. Thor felt so good inside him. Perfect even, like he was always meant to fit. He tilted his head so he could look between their bodies, where they joined, where Thor stretched him open. 

“You have no idea how long I’ve thought about this,” Thor whispered, kissing along his cheek and jaw, and finally his mouth.

Another sob racked through him. Loki did know, he’d thought about it too. Wanted it for as long as he could want. He wanted to tell Thor so, but the words were lost in soft gasps when Thor started to move. After that, all he could do was hang on and bask in the knowledge that he’d been right.

Thor loved him too—or at the very least, wanted him back.

It was difficult to kiss when his whole body shook with perfectly timed thrusts, but Loki managed. Kissing Thor was just as good as fucking him, and it might be a long time yet before he could do so again.

This, all of this, changed nothing. He would still need to leave. In fact, it only made it truer. He could never marry Tyr. Not after this. He’d never be satisfied again.

Every sound Thor made sent the pool of lust low in Loki's belly whirling. He was already so close, just about positive he could come on Thor’s cock alone. But it was Thor who snaked a hand down and took him in hand, squeezing the tip until it wept a bead of pre-come to slick down the length. Loki bit into Thor’s shoulder to muffle his cry.

His body seized; a pleasure building in his cunt and a release flooding from his cock. He came sticky and wet between them, and Thor stoked through the aftershocks until Loki whined in weak protest.

There was one more thing he needed.

“Don’t stop,” Loki gasped. “Don’t stop.”

Thor’s half moaned, half grunted, and buried his head into the crook of Loki’s neck. Loki reached to take hold of his ass, feeling the muscles flex under his palm with each thrust. Thor’s stomach rubbed against his sensitive prick, overwhelming but almost enough to coax him back to life. Everything was too much, and not enough; especially when Thor’s movements became jerky and sporadic.

“That’s it,” Loki cooed. “Come on.”

He left reassuring hands on Thor's backside to let him know what he wanted. That is was okay.

No one had ever come in him before, but when Thor did, Loki realized there was no feeling quite like being filled up. Thor pumped him full with every piston of his hips and with a cry muffled between his teeth.

When it was over and Thor had stilled, only breathing hard above him, Loki collapsed against the flat surface of the island. A pan clattered to the floor, making a racket, but he couldn’t find it in him to care. He was elated, adrenaline pumping through his body, and the only thing he could do was let the laugh that bubbled in his throat escape.

It was part humor, part sadness.

He’d finally got what he wanted—the irony of copulating in the same place he’d caught Thor, ages ago, not lost on him—but now he must give it all up.

“Loki?”

Loki raised up on his elbows, sloppy smile on his face, eyes unfocused and still shining with tears. “How long?”

“What?”

“You said you wanted this. How long?”

Thor, softening cock still sheathed inside, flushed pretty. He had the nerve to glace away shyly, like a swooning maiden, before returning to Loki's attention with a strange expression. “I tried to stay away when I learned of your marriage to Tyr. I thought I could stop my feelings for you from developing into more.”

Loki’s heart skipped. “Did it work?”

“No,” Thor shook his head. “They were already there.”

“Thor,” he breathed out. “I wish it didn’t have to be this way.”

His brother nodded his head in agreement, but he knew not the terms that Loki spoke of. Gods, he would miss him. It was truly a shame they couldn’t both get what they wanted. Perhaps in a less cruel world, they did.

They stayed joined together until Thor grew hard once more and he took Loki again. This time slowly, without urgency, and with just as many desperate kisses. And when they finally parted, breathless and giddy, Loki placed a hand on his cheek and gave him a bittersweet farewell.

 

 

 

He crept to the palace gate with only his satchel, his cloak, and a dull witch light. Einherjar guarded the exit, but he knew a few loose stones that would guarantee his escape—as well as a crack in Yggdrasil’s root that would allow him passage to Jotunheim.

Loki lay low behind a boulder, plotting and scheming his grand escape. Unaware of the figure that loomed behind him.

“What do you think you’re doing?” Baldr hissed.

Loki spun, heart in his mouth. He swallowed it back down and schooled his features. Baldr stood behind him, clad only in his sleep clothes, barefoot and with Loki’s letter clutched in his fist.

“I’m leaving, I told you that.”

“You can’t leave.”

Loki drew forth his seidr, magic wisped along his fingertips. He didn’t want to have to stun his brother, but he certainly would if it meant he saw his last plan succeed. “Can’t I?”

“No, our mother and father request an audience.”

The green of his seidr vanished, and Loki stood stone still. “What?”

“I can’t let you go,” Baldr told him. His bravado tumbled into something else. Stuttering and without confidence. “I mean, I can, and I will—but first—”

“What are you saying?” Loki pulled a face. Won’t let him leave? Will let him leave? He was talking in circles, and it did nothing but make him dizzy.

Baldr sighed. “Just come speak with us before you make your decision. Then, I swear, I won’t stop you if you still wish to flee.”

Loki eyed him skeptically, and Baldr held out a hand. “This isn’t a trick?”

“I was never much good at them.”

Loki smiled fondly, one which Baldr returned. He took the offered hand and allowed himself to be aided in standing. The moment they were on their feet, his brother pulled him into a hug. It was a different embrace than the one he'd shared with Thor. Friendly, and warm, and still comforting.

“I’m sorry,” Loki whispered, for he truly was.

“I know, I read your letter,” Baldr replied. There was an odd tone to his voice. “I’m sorry too.”

The embrace grew a little tighter, and an unpleasant fear made itself a home in Loki's belly. From over Baldr’s shoulder, he watched four Einherjar march over the hill. Armored, gilded, and branded with spears.

“I hope you can forgive me.”

Chapter Text

“Why couldn’t you just let me go?” Loki whispered through his teeth. Harsh and unforgiving, which was just what he planned to be the moment that he was able.

Baldr walked beside him, head held high and eyes focused on the rapidly approaching throne room door. The corner of his lips twitched just the slightest, an amused little quirk that set Loki’s blood on fire. “Don’t hate me just yet, brother.”

Loki growled under his breath, unable to produce words suitable for the amount of hate he truly felt. The large, gilded double doors swung open and Loki’s attention was immediately snatched by two sets of stern eyes on him. He paled, Lady Freyja’s gaze was somehow more unforgiving than Odin, who just looked tired by comparison.

The Einherjar escorted them to the base of the steps, each giving a slam of their spear hilt into the marble flooring. Its ring echoed shrill throughout the room, enough to make Loki wince.

“My sons,” Odin said, calm but grave. His one eye swept the floor, taking in Baldr and Loki—and then, further to the left, Thor and Tyr. Loki hadn’t even noticed them on entry, and he felt a thin break of sweat on his brow. Every one of them looked on the edge of panic, even Tyr, who kept a stoic face but tightened his fists at his side. “I expected more from each of you.”

“I wish that I could say the same,” Freyja chimed. Her gaze commanded Loki’s attention, and he knew she spoke to him directly.

“Couldn’t this wait until morning?” Tyr interrupted. A brave fool as always; so self-centered.

“Baldr seemed it the utmost importance to conduct this meeting now.”

All eyes turned to Baldr—some with annoyance, some with confusion, and Loki, with absolute murder. He cowered for half a second, and then he righted his shoulders and jutted his chin back up in the air. False bravado, all of it. Loki eyed the twitch of his jaw, recognized the fear in his eyes.

“Loki was running away!”

Rat, Loki thought. A sneaky rat. Oh, how he’d like to snap him between a trap, make him—

“Is that true?” Odin asked, and he was forced to tear his seething stare away from his brother, just in time to meet his father’s inquisitive eye.

It was very likely they knew it was true. No doubt Baldr had ran and told them his plans the moment his grubby fingers landed on the letter. Served him right, Loki supposed, for trying to give him a polite goodbye. A foolish move.

He sighed; no point in lying now. Maybe they would show mercy.

“Yes,” he confessed, though there wasn’t a note of happiness in it. He didn’t feel lighter for the truth, only bogged further down. Loki closed his eyes, listening to a few shocked, scandalized gasps, not really sure who made them. Family— or the court? Surely his family wasn’t shocked.

“Why?” Lady Freyja asked. “Have we not been kind to you?”

Loki gaped; eyes wide as he searched for an answer, only to find nothing on his tongue. Had this question not been so recent, there would have been one ready and waiting. Yes, of course, they were kind to him. They fed him, clothed him, gave him the title of prince—or, let him keep it, rather. But, as Loki stood there staring at the pair that he called mother and father, he found the answer did not come easily.

“You didn’t treat me kindly because you loved me,” Loki whispered, the realized truth of it stinging and burning on its way out. “You did so to keep me placate and amenable to your plans for me.”

Neither Freyja nor Odin blinked, strangely resolute in a way that hurt Loki more than any slight he could have imagined. More than Tyr’s cruel words, more than Thor’s rejection, and more than Baldr’s betrayal. They couldn’t even disagree.

Loki blinked back his tears, but it didn’t stop them from falling. “What? Aren’t you going to tell me I’m wrong?”

“Loki—”

He cut Baldr off with a quick turn of his head. “Shut up,” he snarled, under his breath. “Is this not what you wanted? For me to be trapped here and humiliated?”

It seemed his brother had nothing to say about that, and neither did the other two. Thor and Tyr stood silently at the corner, watching with varying degrees of horror.

“No one wants that, my son,” Odin said from the throne. “Though the intention of bringing you here from Jotunheim was to allow you to grow comfortable, and perhaps favorable, of Asgard—we do you love you.”

Loki felt as though his body was caving in on itself, that his heart was expanding too big for his ribcage; that it would explode, and he would die, and they’d kick him under the rug and shrug their shoulders. He didn’t believe them. Who did Odin speak for? Himself? Freyja? Perhaps Tyr, or Thor, or Baldr?

“The prophecy—” Lady Freyja stopped her sentence short, her brows knitted together in quiet confusion.

They were all staring.

Beneath him, Loki heard a crack, and when he looked, he found the marble under his foot had frozen and spiderwebbed in intricate splinters of ice. He brought his hands up, staring at the backs of them, finding the skin blue, raised white lines patterned against them, and his nails dark. It was then that he noticed the room had dropped a few degrees colder.

“Loki,” Thor whispered, the first words he’d spoken since Loki’s arrival. He held out a tentative hand, lowering it carefully when there was no attempt made to reach back.

“I don’t care about the prophecy. I wasn’t born merely to fulfill it,” Loki said slowly, keeping an icy red glare on Thor.

“You were!” Odin stood quickly from the throne, the first real thread of anger present. “You are unable to run from it.”

“I can, and—”

“If I may?” Baldr cleared his throat, fumbling from foot to foot. Every eye turned toward him, and he attempted to hide the effects of such scrutiny. “I believe I have found a solution.”

Loki dropped the fist he hadn’t realized he’d risen. He stared at Baldr, who gave him a small smile—and for a brief moment, there was a flash of the brother Loki remembered. Humble, and nice, loyal, and undeserving of the pain Loki had caused him.

“Continue,” Freyja said, stern.

She watched with a pointed brow, eyes never leaving Loki. It must jar them all, to see him in his true form. His horns sat heavy on his head, but he did not shift back. Let them gawk. Let them be reminded who and what he truly was.

Odin waved a hand, and Baldr nodded.

“I’ve been scouring tomes and ancient scrolls on the prophecy, trying to find some loophole to free the binding. And it seems, all the texts are the same—even down to the wording.”

Loki’s shoulders deflated. So, he hadn’t found anything at all. He was bound to this damn destiny, forced to marry and forge an allegiance with a father and home he never knew. What did it matter? Who was to say Laufey-King wouldn’t break that trust? What good was Loki’s life in the crossroads of conquest?

“But,” Baldr continued. “That prophecy speaks not of marriage.”

The throne room grew quiet and still. Tyr’s face finally cracking, a confused twist of his mouth present. “What?”

“It’s true,” Baldr insisted. “It only says that Loki should rule side-by-side with the King of Asgard.”

“As consort,” Odin corrected, though he sounded uncertain. “How else would he accomplish such a thing?”

“That’s archaic thinking,” Thor chimed it, striding across the floor to Loki’s side. He spared him the briefest of glances before slapping a reassuring hand on Loki’s shoulder, giving it a tight squeeze. “There are many ways for him to rule alongside Tyr without being married to him.”

Loki, stunned speechless, watched Odin and Freyja exchange a troubled look.

A laugh bubbled out and echoed through the great room. Only when everyone turned toward him once again, did Loki realize it was coming from him. That only sparked it further, he doubled over from it, great billowing heaves escaping him until tears formed in the corners of his eyes for a reason other than frustrated sadness.

“He’s lost it,” Tyr commented dully.

Loki dutifully ignored him. He had a feeling he’d be doing that quite often. “All this time, all this heartbreak I’ve caused myself,” he looked to Baldr, and to Thor, swallowing. “And that I’ve caused others—was all based on a technicality? You told me I had to marry Tyr when I didn’t at all.”

“Now, little Loki,” Tyr said, that condescending tone he always had when addressing his youngest brother. “Would marrying me be that bad?”

“Yes,” came the harmonized chorus of the remaining three sons of Odin.

“Mother,” Baldr started. “Tyr has countless paramours, some within other realms that could tie yet another political alliance.”

“All of the realms, save Jotunheim, are already loyal to Asgard,” Odin answered. Freyja held a hand up, stopping him from speaking further. He obeyed with a simple nod of his head.

She looked to Loki, and he knew that whatever left her next, was meant for his ears only. “What do you think of all this?”

Loki felt as though he’d been suspended in a time-lapse this entire hearing. That his body was frozen, the only thing keeping him grounded being Thor’s gentle hand on his shoulder. He struggled to find his voice. It seemed to retreat within him as Lady Freyja descended the stairs; glorious, statuesque, and fierce—how he’d always view her.

“I believe,” Loki’s voice came out little more than a squeak. He snapped his mouth shut, found his bearings, and tried again. “I believe that if you marry me to Tyr—you will never find the peace you crave. I will fight, every day. I will never give Asgard an heir.”

Loki grit his teeth as she bore down on him. He didn’t back away; he had nothing left to lose. Fight or flee, those were his only options…and fleeing, well, that hadn’t worked out as planned.

“I will start a war if I have to,” he whispered.

Freyja stopped just short of him, sizing him up. He hoped he looked menacing, like his Jotun brethren. She regarded him for a moment, stoic pull to her lips, before nodding and pulling him into an embrace that threw him off balance. He sank into it, wrapping his arms around her back and holding himself there. Loki buried his head as close as he could in her neck, though his horns soon became tangled in her hair, nearly knocking loose her helm.

“Hold on!” Tyr barked from across the room. Freyja pulled away, turning to her son with a set in her jaw that dared him to defy her. Though, Tyr had never been very smart when it came to displays of such pious bravery. “Loki was promised to me.”

“You fought this union just as much as Loki has!” Thor spoke up. “I cannot count the days on the training grounds that you lamented about being forced to marry him!”

Loki winced. That hurt, regardless of how this seemed to be swinging in his favor.

“It’s true,” Baldr agreed.

Ouch.

“Was it not just months ago that you came to me complaining?” Odin asked.

Double ouch.

Tyr fumbled, groaning under his breath. Unable to produce even the weakest of protests, he cast his gaze back down to the floor. Agitated, but defeated. For all his power, he was not king—and he still bent the knee to Odin and Freyja. Still just a stubborn, unruly prince.

“Let us think on it,” Freyja said, her eyes found Loki. “But, if it is a war you promise for being wed to Tyr, I would be a fool to think it would still end in peace.”

For the first time, Loki felt hope.

“Leave us.” All of Odin’s sons turned toward the door at his command. “Tyr, you stay.”

Loki looked quick enough to get a taste of immense satisfaction at the terror struck on Tyr’s face. Would it be terribly immature of him to stick his tongue out, like how he used to pester him when he was a child? Probably best not to muck up this favorable flow. Thor guided him out of the throne room, Baldr close at their heels.

Once they were finally out, the door shut, Loki let out a breath, sagging against Thor’s shoulder. It felt good not to have him shy away, or awkwardly push him upright, he let himself be an anchor for Loki, fingers squeezing into his hip. He never wanted to leave his side—but from the corner of his eye, he caught sight of another brother. One that looked slightly more troubled as he shifted his gaze to the floor and away from them.

“Baldr,” Loki said, catching his attention once again. “Thank you.”

“Why’d you do it?” Loki looked to Thor, shocked. It seemed he didn’t find sincerity in Baldr’s actions, or at the very least, was suspicious of hidden motives. Baldr only scoffed.

“Believe it or not, I care for Loki.” A pregnant pause, where Loki took the time to look between them and take in the daggered glare they exchanged. “In the same way that you do,” Baldr added. “But I think you know that.”

“So, you wish to marry him.”

Hold on.

“No—”

“What if I don’t wish to marry either of you!” Loki exclaimed. “Why does everyone in the damned realm think I’m jumping to get married?”

“Loki, I—”

“Did you not…?”

Loki stared at them both, shrugging from beneath Thor’s arm and backing away. Maybe he should just run after all. He turned his welling anger to Baldr first. “You only did this so that you could marry me instead?”

“No, Loki, I swear.” He sounded sincere at least, but then he fumbled. “I did, at first.”

“I knew it.”

“Shut up, Thor,” Loki warned.

“I thought maybe that’s what you had wanted too! But when I realized my mistake, I didn’t stop looking. If just one of those texts who have mentioned marriage, they would have never agreed. I needed to be thorough.”

Loki stayed still in stunned silence.

“I was the wrong brother,” Baldr finished quietly. “I know. But I love you both and I know the way that you love each other. So, please, just don’t let my hard work go to waste.”

He rushed to Baldr, flinging his arms around him and hugging him tightly. After a few stunned moments, he felt the embrace returned, Baldr burying his head into the crook of his neck and letting out a little laugh. When he pulled away, he thumbed a tear at the corner of Loki’s eye, looking him up and down with a crooked smile.

“You look good like this, by the way.”

Loki reached up and touched a horn. He’d almost forgotten. “Thanks.” He pulled back from the hug, ignored the way Baldr smiled, but his eyes still looked sad. He’d never given much thought to his feelings before—he almost wished he had sooner.

“Yes,” Thor said. He put an arm around Loki’s shoulder. “Thank you.”

Loki looked up, just in time for Thor to tilt his gaze down. It felt rude to kiss him in front of Baldr, but a quick peck wouldn’t hurt. His lips lit aflame when they met, just knowing this time he could keep him. If he wanted.

He may just let him stew a bit.

Their kiss broke with an awkward cough and the reopening of the double doors. Tyr looked not very pleased at all, red-faced and jaw muscles ticking. He didn’t even look their way as they entered.

“Loki!” Odin boomed.

It seemed they weren’t wasting any time. His stomach was in knots awaiting their verdict, even if Tyr’s sour mood seemed to tell it all.

“Would acting alongside Tyr, when he is king, as acting Ambassador for Jotunheim relations keep you complicit.”

Loki felt absolutely giddy, but he trained his voice to be calm and steady. “I would consider it.”

Freyja’s mouth twitched into the barest hint of a smile. “You have much training to do, and luckily Odin can hold off Tyr’s coronation while you are prepared.”

Ah, so that was why he looked so murderous. Good. He needed to be taught a little patience.

“That seems fair.” 

More than fair, really. If there was one thing Loki had learned on this journey of self-discovery, it was that he wasn't the best at relations. He'd really need to sink in, absorb all there was to know. It might take years, maybe longer. Oh, the thought of Tyr losing his plaything and his crown was simply delightful. 

“But,” Odin interjected. “Laufey-King has believed his son to marry a prince.”

“Oh.” Loki hoped he didn’t sound breathless. He pointedly didn’t look at Thor. “How troublesome.”

Freyja rolled her eyes.

“I’ll do it!”

Every eye in the court turned to Thor. His cheeks flushed at the attention, ducking his head in embarrassment at his readied eagerness.

“You’d be so brave?” Loki asked slyly.

“I’ve met beasts more fearsome than you,” Thor teased with a wry smile. They made eyes at each other, and a simmering heat curled his stomach. Loki doubted he cared at all if Thor decided to take him right there.

A cough broke that pleasant vision.

“Loki, would this please you?”

He made a show of thinking about it as if he hadn’t been gunning for this exact outcome. As if he hadn’t laid in bed nights after nights dreaming of Thor being his. Through all that, the thing that pleased him most of all was the choice. He could say no. He wouldn’t, but he could. That power, that freedom, made all the difference.

“Yes,” Loki said at last, eyes still on Thor. His consolation prize; his now betrothed. “I think it would.”