The whirring of the Bifrost calmed down and softened as the seven Asgardians gained footing on the floor of the Observatory. Without a single word or noise, Heimdall easily caught Hofund as King Odin dropped the sword from the pedestal. Immediately Thor puffed out his chest, in what Loki assumed to be an intimidating gesture.
“Why did you bring us back?” He demanded, his blue eyes practically glowing from rage.
“Do you realise what you have done? What you’ve started?” Odin immediately started, choosing not to answer Thor’s query. Loki was standing behind Odin and Thor, observing the whole area they were in. He could see Fandral being held up by Volstagg and Sif, Hogan standing beside them.
“I was protecting my home!” Thor growled, standing defiantly toward his father, with his hammer clenched in his hand.
“You cannot even protect your friends! How can you hope to protect a kingdom?” Odin asked, though Loki was sure he wasn’t actually expecting an answer from his firstborn. The Allfather then seemed to notice Fandral and his hole in his stomach, “Get him to the healing room. Now!” Sif and Volstagg helped Fandral out of the Bifrost, Heimdall following them in their wake.
Now it was just Thor and Odin. And Loki, but Odin seemed to just forget he was there. Loki would probably feel bad for tricking his brother and him getting the blame in any other situation, but this was his plan. Odin now had to see that Thor was still a reckless boy eager for war.
Thor probably should have dropped the situation, Odin seemingly hesitant to carry on the conversation. But he didn’t.
“There won’t be a kingdom to protect if you’re afraid to act!” When Odin didn’t think that deserved an answer, the thunderer continued with more fury ridden in his voice, “The Jotuns must learn to fear me, just as they once feared you.”
Loki fidgeted with his hands, taking in a deep breath silently as not to turn the attention to himself. That made him uneasy, from what he’d seen in Jötunheim. He didn’t have any proof, but there was something in his gut telling him that it made sense.
“That’s pride and vanity talking, not leadership.” Odin replied, staring down at Thor with many emotions flickering over his face. Loki could see anger the most, but there was something else behind it. Sadness? Disappointment? Guilt? “You’ve forgotten everything I taught you, about a warrior’s patience.”
Without even a beat to spare, Thor growled at their father, “While you wait and be patient, the Nine Realms laugh at us.” Well, that wasn’t exactly true. Only Jötunheim would be laughing at them, but they’re obviously not. Thor just went there and committed mass genocide to their people. They’d probably be more angry than amused.
Loki sighed silently, watching Thor continue to get himself in trouble, “The old ways are done. You’d stand giving speeches while Asgard falls-“
“You are a vain, greedy, cruel boy!” There went Odin’s temper,
“And you are an old man and a fool!” Thor snarled at The Allfather, the veins in his neck jutting out in poorly concealed rage. Loki’s brother had too much pride to let someone chastise him, even his father.
There was a long moment of silence, where Loki gazed at both his brother and father, for once not knowing what was going to happen.
“Yes,” said Odin, “I am a fool. To think that you were mature enough to think for yourself.”
Odin turned to Loki, his face suspiciously calm and open, “Loki. You twisted your brother’s head to your whim.” It wasn’t a question; it was a statement. The rounded roof of the Observatory suddenly seemed stifling and heavy upon his shoulders. How did Odin know it was him? Thor always acted like this.
“You have got to control that silver tongue of yours. I will not let you risk starting wars because of some silly feud between you too.”
“Father-“ Thor tried again to interrupt him and speak his mind, but was stopped and quietened by a horrific snarl by Odin, shock fluttering over his angered face as he fell silent. Loki could see that his lips were thinned, probably now seeing how big this actually was. When Thor turned his gaze upon his brother, Loki subtly looked away. His plans weren’t ruined, but he didn’t think that he would be punished.
There was another big pause, the air silent as everyone seemed to hold their breaths. Odin hung his head for a minute or two, probably going over punishments in his head.
“Loki Odinson.” Loki purposely kept his gaze blank, expression closed, “You have betrayed the command of your king. Through your skills of trickery and manipulation, you have played your role in opening these peaceful realms and innocent lives, to the horrors and desolation of war!” The king’s voice got louder as he talked, and Loki shuddered, his skin tingling with the anxiety of what was upon him.
Gungnir was placed in the Bifrost, flickers of lightning cackling up to the top and dispersing at the tunnel. The Observatory began its whirring once more, the golden walls spinning around them. Odin stared down at his youngest, his one blue eye narrowed in anger.
Things were just going too fast for him, completely barrelling out of control, and that hardly ever happened with him. The trickster preferred to have dominance in every conversation, never allowing anyone to get to him. This turn of events was so surprising to him he physically felt disoriented on his feet.
With a quick glance at his brother, Loki could see Thor looked lost, probably confused on how he got out of his punishment. But Loki could see betrayal in his eyes, surprised that his own brother had manipulated him into destroying his chance at the crown. Emotions ran freely across his face, allowing Loki to read whatever he wanted from him.
His legs almost buckled as Odin padded down the steps and stood before him, speaking up once again, “You are unworthy of these realms. Unworthy of your title! You’re unworthy- of the loved ones you have betrayed.” And that hurt Loki. It was nothing new to the trickster, being told he was unworthy, but to hear it from Odin. Something heated up behind his ribcage, and he couldn’t tell if it was anger, sadness or some other emotion.
“I now take from you your power!” Loki didn’t feel any different from before, but his guess was corrected as he attempted to grab at his magic from within him. It was still there, but it felt slippery to the touch, “In the name of my father, and his father before! I, Odin Allfather, cast you out!”
And with that, Loki felt a rush of pressure pushing him backwards through the Bifrost once again. The last thing he saw was Thor, his eyes wide in surprise as he looked down at his brother.
The night in Puente Antiguo was incredible. Breath-taking, in the desert. There wasn’t much to be seen for half a mile away, but the gentle wind in the air and the chirping of crickets dominated the darkness. The sky wasn’t completely black, a navy blue with thick clouds covering most of the sky.
Fingers clacked on a keyboard as the time ticked closer, predicting with scientific research. It was basically silent in their small van, nobody talking as they moved from monitor to monitor.
The devices started beeping in levelled tones as Jane Foster stood out of the large sunroof, soon accompanied by Erik Selvig. The device in her hand was still beeping, showing that it was time for the aurora to start.
The scientists looked up, their mouths slightly open as they waited.
Jane could see Erik look at her in the corner of her eye, a sceptical look on his face. She continued to look at the night sky for just a moment longer, giving him a quick look, “Wait for it,” She said, some uncertainty dripping into her voice. This was different to all the other auroras, she predicted them ones to point.
There was a mock silence in where Erik didn’t think to answer that. Darcy, her intern, turned around from the driver’s seat, “Can I turn on the radio?” She asked in a monotone voice, already knowing what the answer was gonna be. She was shown right when Jane immediately replied with a negative, still gazing at the stars.
There was another moments pause, where Darcy turned back round to the front of the car, staring at the ground in front of her, and Jane continued looking. Maybe her calculations were wrong? Maybe it was going to happen just a couple minutes afterwards?
It seemed Erik had given up, for the older man slumped, looking back at her, “Jane, you can’t keep doing this,” He stayed, as if it was a fact.
She thinned her lips and ducked back down into the van, “The last seventeen occurrences have been predictable to the second-”
“Jane, you’re an astrophysicist. Not some storm chaser.”
“-I’m telling you, there’s a connection between these atmospheric disturbances and my research. I wouldn’t have asked you to fly out here if I wasn’t absolutely sure.” She stared at her monitors, and when she found nothing that could explain her mistake, she fell back, sighing loudly.
“Jane?” The astrophysicist looked up as was called by her intern, a questioning worried note in her tone. Darcy was looking in the rear view mirror, up to the sky with wide eyes, “I think you might wanna see this.”
Jane Foster stared at the back window, at the colourful lights flooding the once dark sky. It was a blue, mostly, with flecks of gold and green almost shown out like a pattern. The storm lowered itself, creating a small funnel of light. Jane got up from the van and flew herself up the sunroof, entranced, “What is that?”
“I thought you said it was a subtle aurora,” Erik looked at her, joining her up the sunroof.
With a start, she yelled at her intern, “Go!” Darcy stepped on the accelerator, gripping the steering wheel as she turned round to drive towards it. The van hit a bump as they went and the front would defiantly have some sort of scratch on it. The scientists jumped back down, getting in their seats. Jane grabbed her camera and held it out the window, “Get closer.”
“Right, good one,” Darcy replied, before realising with a look of horror that she was completely serious. That’s what she gets for interning with a crazy astrophysicist. It just couldn’t ever be a normal day.
As they got closer and closer, the storm descended to the ground, almost like a tornado with blue tinted winds of sand flying past them. Darcy could hardly see anything and when the tornado-like storm of lights hit the ground in a large rumble, she twisted the steering wheel the other way.
“What are you doing?” Jane cried out.
“I am not dying for six college credits!”
They didn’t end up with going in the different direction, as Jane had reached over and steered with one hand, completely taking over Darcy’s job. Small snippets of screaming and yelping filled the van as they got closer and closer, inside the storm now.
There was smoke everywhere, blinding them in the noises and lights of the storm. The only warning they got before they struck him, was a faint figure of a man, stumbling around.
They all looked around at each other as they stopped the car, horrified expressions that had no idea what they were supposed to do. When the shock died down, they pushed the doors open, quickly jumping down into the sand of the New Mexico desert and turned on their flashlights.
“I think that was legally your fault!”
“Get the first aid kit!”
Jane ran over towards the man who was scrawled across the ground, flashing his light to see if he had been given any serious injuries. Surprisingly there were none, only a bruised scrape across his forehead and cheekbone, “Do me a favour and don’t be dead,” She said, even though she knew it was not going to help at all.
And with that thought in her mind, the man gasped in a breath as he suddenly opened his eyes, green like a forest. He elbowed himself up to look around him as much as he could, his lips thinning.
“Woah, does he need CPR? Because I totally know CPR,” Darcy explained from where she was standing, apparently not having bothered with the first aid kit when she saw there were little to no injuries on him. Erik stood a little far behind, looking around him and wondering where this man could’ve come from.
Jane seemed to stare at this man, her thoughts jumbled as everything seemed to catch up to her, realising how close they were. She blinked, as the man kept gazing at her with a blank expression. He suddenly slumped back into the ground and let out a soft groan, “Where’d he come from?” She looked at Erik, who gave a one handed shrug.
Deciding he had been sitting on the floor long enough, the black haired man then got up to his feet silently, looking around him as he seemed to observe the desert before him. Then he looked at the sky. The blank, dark sky with no traces of the storm left. With a muttered grumble, he kicked at the sand underneath his feet.
“You alright?” Darcy asked, her eyebrows drawn together.
There was no answer from the man, except a low snarling sound and another kick in the ground as he kept his eyes locked at the sky. A gasp from Jane caught everyone’s attention except him. She got closer to where he was standing, following the pattern as it went round in a circle, “Oh my God, Erik look at this!”
There, in the ground was a indent of some sort, clearly left here by the storm. How, she didn’t know, but this was exactly where it had hit the ground, and where the man was stumbling about.There were many intricate details in the design and she quickly crouched down to sketch them in her notebook.
It was rather peaceful to her, wondering why the man hadn’t spoken once after getting hit by their car. Which, yeah, they should probably do something about him – they can’t leave this man out here in the desert without any supervision.
That made him sound like a kid. But he did look pretty young, as she looked back at him. With a small start, the man quickly turned round and stared at her, or what she was doing. Was sketching the design considered weird to him?
“Jane,” called Erik Selvig from where he was standing, staring at the man, “Maybe we should get him to a hospital.”
“No, no. He’s fine, look at him!” She went back to work.
“What is this hospital you speak of?” The strange man suddenly spoke up, taking a step towards Jane, his accent surprising the three people around him. Jane realised that he sounded British, which was weird in New Mexico. Especially in the desert all alone.
With this thought in mind, Jane looked him over. He certainly looked different than any locals she’s seen in the town. He had black hair that reached just under his ears and curled ends, and a very angular face. His clothes were peculiar; a dark green tunic which was matted with dirt, and leather (leather?) trousers. Who was this man?
“You don’t know what a hospital is?”
The man shrugged, his eyes still narrowed to mere slits, “Am I supposed to?” He said slowly, “Maybe I hit my head when you and your machine drove straight into me.” His voice turned from polite to menacing so quickly, Jane thought from where she was still crouched beside the rune-like markings on the ground. Actually, she could feel the starting of muscle ache slipping into her legs and got up with a grimace.
She shook her legs out, relieving herself of the creeping numbness and hoping to god she didn’t get pins and needles. That was such an unpleasant feeling, she always tries to avoid that.
“What were you even doing out here in the middle of that storm? You literally just appeared out of nowhere dude!” Darcy eyed the man wearily, Jane noticing that her hand had instinctually gone to her purse. It was common knowledge between Jane and Erik that Darcy hides her taser in there. She sorely hoped that her assistant wouldn’t use it on this guy that they literally just ran over with their van. It could make things so much worse if the dude decided to press charges.
The black haired man sniffed, looking back at the sky like it was some great mystery to him, “Yeah well, it wasn’t my intention to get in the way of your race track here, but I really must be going.” He stalked forward. The guy gave off a weird vibe, Jane couldn’t deny that, but she was glad to let him go his own way while she does her research.
The storm above had dissipated long before now, but the markings were still engraved into the desert sand.
Obviously Darcy had different ideas.
The last thing Jane saw before she ducked her head down again was the dude in green walking towards, but not at, Darcy’s direction. She thought that her assistant would let him walk past her.
But when Erik cried out beside her, “Darcy!” and she heard the telltale sound of electricity cracking and a body hitting the ground, she whipped her head around. There on the ground was the man, clearly having been tased.
“Darcy.” She laid her disappointing eyes on the fellow woman. She turned back to Erik, who shrugged.
“Maybe we should take him back with us?”