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I was thinking of a son

Chapter Text

The first time Burt Hummel ever sees Kathryn Lorenson, she's sitting in the library, reading a book. He stumbles, staring at her as she turns a page.

He sees her again, two days later, leaving a store as he tows a car down the street.

The third time, she walks into his garage and asks him to fix her truck.

"Truck?" he repeats, eyes flicking from her curly black hair to her dainty boots. She's wearing a plain green shirt and a dark skirt, shoes that he thinks might be fashionable, but he isn't sure. Her eyes are bright blue, though as she steps closer, brow raised, they seem to shift into green.

"Is there some reason I shouldn't have a truck, Mr. Hummel?" she asks.

"Nah, of course not," he says. "I'll take a look."

Five months later, Burt asks her to marry him. He's honestly shocked she says yes. She's too smart for him, meant for so much bigger things, but she smiles at him, dances in his arms, whispers over and over what a good man he is.

He's twenty-nine, she's twenty-four, when Kurt is born. They've been married for seven months. Kathryn has no family, but Burt's mother is there. Ma doesn't like Kathryn, never has, but she adores little Kurt.

"He has your eyes," Kathryn whispers, smiling down at their boy. "He'll have your heart."

Burt is so happy, and the years pass, and then when Kurt is seven, he and Kathryn are in a car accident. Kurt sobs in Burt's arms, crying about Mama telling him to be brave and everything would be alright, and there was light, and Kurt doesn’t have a single scratch on him, but everyone promises Burt that Kathryn died on impact. She didn't suffer.

For three years, Kurt talks about his mother like she’s still there. He fills up notebooks with giant snakes, howling wolves, a half-skeleton woman, two boys always fighting each other, eight-legged horses, gigantic trees, snowstorms and rainbow bridges. He tells Burt that Mama will come back, and he knows things he shouldn’t know. That he has no way of knowing.

But eventually, the drawings stop. The stories taper off. Kurt moves on from his obsession with mythology to fashion and singing and plans on how to get out of Lima. Burt thinks they both might be able to start healing now, and if Kurt takes on more and more of the household chores, if he decides it’s his job to take care of Burt – well, Burt does his best, but Kurt is clever and stubborn and so much his mother’s son. He has her way with words, her determination, her occasionally very cruel wit.

The bullying really takes off when Kurt is twelve. Middle school is an exercise in not taking a flamethrower to adolescents, an uncaring administration, and the parents who should know better. Kurt is quieter at home, and Burt finds a sketchbook in the den, full of blizzards and blue giants and Kathryn. The last page, though, has a dark-haired man with green eyes, wearing odd clothes and curved antlers on his head.

Kurt slams the door behind him, stomping into the house, so Burt lets the sketchbook fall back onto the couch. “I hate this town!” Kurt shouts, storming past Burt to the basement, and he slams that door, too.

Burt rests his head on the door. “Kurt,” he calls. “Can I come down, kiddo?”

Kurt screams, “NO!” back up the stairs, so Burt just stays leaning against the door. Burt can’t really do anything he hasn’t already done, and if he kills anyone, he’ll be taken away from Kurt, and Kurt’s reached the age where he doesn’t turn to Burt for everything. He still does too much around the house, still fusses about food. He sings and designs, and joins glee, and introduces Burt to Carole, and he really believes things are so much better.

Kurt tells Burt he’s gay. Burt loves him, so things work out.

And then Burt collapses, falling into a dark void, and Kathryn says, “Oh, Burt.”

He looks at her, her curly dark hair, her brilliant, color-shifting eyes. “Kat,” he whispers.

She smiles, reaching up to touch his face. “I love you, Burt Hummel,” she says. “And our son – he’s such a good boy.” Kathryn steps closer, kissing his lips, his nose, arms wrapping around him as she buries her face in his neck.

“Am I dead?” Burt asks, holding her.

“No, my dear,” she says. “You will wake up. You’ll be whole and hale, and you’ll ask that lovely woman Carole to be your bride.”

When he wakes from his coma, he learns he’s been asleep for over a week. He remembers that he saw Kathryn, but he can’t recall what they said to each other.

He asks Carole to marry him three months later. Then he learns that some punk has been threatening his son.

When Kurt opens a package he ordered off the internet and pulls out two ninja knives – Sais, Kurt calls them, pronounced like sighs - Burt doesn’t tell him he can’t. Over the years, he’s enrolled Kurt in three self-defense classes, two jujitsu, one kickboxing, and Kurt always drops out, says fighting’s not for him, says he’ll defend himself with words and running. If he’s finally decided to learn, Burt is more than happy.

Burt finds some punk in Kurt’s bed, and Kurt’s drawing the man with the antlers and his mother, and he picks up those knives so quickly, and then he’s voted prom queen, and the glee club’s at Nationals, and somewhere along the way, the punk from his bed (who practically orders Burt to have the sex talk with his little boy) becomes Kurt’s boyfriend, and Kurt’s throwing the knives through the bull’s-eye every time, and then he asks Burt, on the first day his summer vacation, if he believes that gods are real.

Burt isn’t religious. He never has been. Carole goes to church on Christmas and that’s it. Finn was apparently praying to a grilled cheese sandwich while Burt was in a coma, and Kurt has never expressed interest in learning about Burt’s parents’ God.

“I don’t know what you mean by ‘gods,’” Burt says.

Kurt is twirling one of the knives in his left hand, so fast Burt can’t even follow it as it spins. “Mythology,” Kurt says. “Norse, to be specific.”

“No,” Burt says. “I think those are like fairy tales.”

“Okay,” Kurt says. The knife stills. Kurt lifts it to his eyes, tilting his head to stare at it. Burt feels worry start fluttering in his belly.

“Something wrong, Kurt?” he asks.

“No,” Kurt says, smiling at him.

Burt is not as smart as his son, but he’s not blind or stupid. He checks out a Norse mythology book from the library, and he finds a wolf, a giant snake, a half-dead girl, two boys who fight constantly, an eight-legged horse, a gigantic tree, and ice giants. Kurt had been obsessed with this stuff, just after the accident. He’d also talked about his mom like she was still there, and Kurt didn’t have a single mark from the crash.

“Kathryn,” he whispers, closing the book. “What the hell is going on?”

No answer, of course.

Kurt spends the summer with his boyfriend. He also orders other kinds of knives off the internet and picks up those even quicker than the Sais. He’s sketching Norse mythology more than ever, and he always bounces into the kitchen smiling, talking about his mother.

Carole asks Burt if something is wrong; Burt can only shrug.

Kurt is happy. He’s finally happy. Burt hasn’t seen him like this since before the accident, and he won’t do anything to take this from his son.

He’s not as surprised as he should be when Finn says at one of their engine lessons, “Burt? I thought Kurt’s mom was dead.”

“She is,” Burt says. “Why?”

Finn gives him a sidewise, nervous look. “I overheard him and Artie talking. Kurt used those ninja-knives at his audition for the play, and Artie wanted to know where he learned how.” He hesitates. “Kurt said his mother taught him.”

Burt sighs heavily. “Kurt taught himself,” he says. “His mom’s been dead for ten years.”

“Okay,” Finn says, turning back to the engine.

Burt doesn’t bring it up with Kurt. But he does ask to see Kurt’s newest sketches, and Kurt watches him page through them. He’s drawn the same man over and over, usually looking into a mirror, and Kathryn looking back.

Burt doesn’t believe in any god. But that night, before crawling into bed with Carole, Burt whispers, “Please be real. I don’t want our son to be crazy.”

That night, he dreams about Kathryn, holding Kurt, and she’s telling him about eternity and never-ending stars and how a sharp word can carve more easily than the sharpest blade.

Chapter Text

When Blaine introduces his father, Kurt smiles and says, “I’m a big fan, Mr. Stark.” He’s perfectly polite and unfailingly charming, but despite that, Blaine gets the feeling that Kurt’s laughing. Something about his eyes.

But Dad loves him. So do all of Dad’s teammates, when Kurt and Blaine are escorted to the SHIELD headquarters after an attempted kidnapping. Blaine hasn’t let go of Kurt’s hand since they were tossed into the back of a van, and Kurt’s only started to thaw now that they’re safe. His free hand has been clenched for hours, like he’s holding something no one else can feel or see, but Blaine is just so happy they’re not dead, and he pulls Kurt with him when he throws himself at Dad. Dad catches them both, and holds them, and he says, “This is why I didn’t want anyone to know, Blaine, I have so many enemies.”

“Hello,” Captain America says, stepping forward as Dad lets Blaine go. “I’m Steve Rogers.” He gives Blaine and Kurt each a firm handshake and a breathtaking smile. Dad introduces everyone else – Natasha, the scary redhead; Clint, the guy who can’t miss; Dr. Banner, the green rage monster; Thor, God of Thunder.

Kurt stares at Thor the longest, a small smile on his lips. Blaine doesn’t know why. He just follows Kurt, still linked by their hands, when Kurt walks over to Thor – he’s humongous, the biggest guy Blaine has ever seen in real life – and says, “I used to be fascinated by Norse mythology, sir. Is it alright… may I ask a question?”

“Of course,” Thor says. “If I have an answer, I shall give it.”

“Did Loki really have all those children?” Kurt asks. “In the books, all the kids were taken and had horrible fates… did it really happen like that?” He’s not smiling anymore.

None of Dad’s teammates move or speak, as Thor stares down at Kurt, face frozen. “He had the children,” Thor finally says. “Each of them grew and found their own way in the nine realms.”

Kurt’s smile blossoms, brighter than ever. “That’s good to hear. Thank you.” He turns back to Blaine and Mr. Coulson enters the room.

“Stark!” Mr. Coulson says, “Take the boys to a safe room. Loki’s attacking.”

Dad’s team hurry out the room, and Dad grabs Blaine, pulling him the other way. “Does anyone know why?” Dad yells back to Mr. Coulson. “I thought we were on better terms with Loki!”

If Mr. Coulson has an answer, no one hears over the alarms that start blaring.

0o0

Kurt seems captivated by the Iron Man armor. He asks Dad a dozen questions about the mechanics of it, things Blaine never understood or felt interest in. Dad answers them all, and then says, “Loki’s been captured. Stay here.”

“Alright,” Blaine says, at the same time as Kurt’s, “Of course, Mr. Stark.”

Dad heads out, slamming the door behind him. Neither Kurt nor Blaine makes a sound, crouching down in the far corner together, holding hands again. Blaine notices that Kurt’s free hand is clenched around something, and he doesn’t look afraid, not like Blaine is. Blaine’s watched Dad’s battles with Loki on TV, and if they caught him, it was because he wanted to be caught.

And why do villains want to be caught? It’s always a trick.

But eventually, Clint comes for them and takes them back to the original room, where Dad is waiting, still in his armor. “We’re still looking for intel about the kidnapping,” Dad says, but then his gaze goes past Blaine and he scowls. Blaine turns to look:

Loki is being escorted past the room, hands bound, and as he looks at them, his smirk drops, expression blanking for a moment before a fury the likes of which Blaine has never seen fills Loki’s face.

There’s some sort of explosion in the hall, all bright light and roaring, and then Loki is in the room with them, hand around Clint’s neck. “Why do you have this boy?” he demands, green fire wreathing around him.

Clint chokes. Dad shoves Blaine and Kurt behind him, raising his hand and powering up, but Loki lets Clint fall, turning to face Dad. He looks at Dad, at Blaine, and finally at Kurt.

“You protect him?” Loki asks. “He’s not a prisoner?”

Dad’s arm doesn’t drop, but he seems confused when he says, “Neither of ‘em are prisoners.”

Loki’s fire vanishes. “Good,” he says, smiling what might even be a real smile, and Blaine’s pretty sure he hasn’t looked away from Kurt. “Tell the rest that we’ll continue this at some other time. I have would-be kidnappers to eviscerate.”

“Uh, what?” Dad splutters, but Loki is gone.

 

0o0

Mr. Fury is terrifying, and Blaine answers every question he asks, but he doesn’t really know anything and it’s obvious.

Kurt asks, after Blaine’s words have run dry, “Did you really date Sue Sylvester?”

Mr. Fury shudders and Kurt grins triumphantly. “I knew it!” He claps his hands delightedly. “I’ll have to tell her you’re just as handsome as she said.”

“Mr. Hummel,” Mr. Fury starts, voice full of thunder and annoyance, but Kurt cuts him off.

Kurt interrupts Nick Fury. Blaine can only stare at him in wonder and lust.

“Call me Kurt, please, sir,” Kurt says politely, hands clasped demurely on his knee. “Mr. Hummel is my father. You’ll send a representative home with us, of course, to explain everything? Dad will not react well to whatever explanation Mr. Stark would provide.”

All of the Avengers, Mr. Coulson, Mr. Fury, and Blaine are staring at him. Kurt simply smiles his I’m innocent, why are you looking at me like that? smile.

“Kurt, then,” Mr. Fury continues with foreboding patience. “Do you know why Loki decided to go after the men who kidnapped you and Stark’s kid?”

Kurt shrugs. “He must not like kidnappers.”

Dad tilts his head, staring at Kurt like he’s some mechanical problem in need of solving. Blaine used to get that look sometimes. “You asked about Loki’s kids,” he muses. “Loki freaked out when he saw you. He attacked Clint, who had a hand on your shoulder. He stopped – completely stopped – when he realized I was protecting instead of threatening you.”

Kurt’s gotten steadily paler at everything Dad lists. “And then, he goes after those idiots who tried to snatch you?” Dad finishes. “I dunno. Boss, what do you think?” He glances at Mr. Fury.

“Kurt?” Blaine asks softly, reaching out for Kurt’s hand, surprised when Kurt actually clutches him right back.

Thor says, “You were fascinated by stories of my brother’s exploits, fiction most of them may be.”

“What of it?” Kurt asks quietly. “I liked Greek myths, too.” He stares directly at Mr. Fury. “May we go home now, sir? If a supervillain god has dealt with the kidnapers, I doubt there’s much danger left.”

“Sure,” Mr. Fury says. “Stark, Thor, Rogers – take the kids home.”

Kurt regally inclines his head.

0o0

Mr. Hummel yells himself hoarse, and even Thor backs away from him as he rages. Kurt waits, arms crossed, and when his father scoops him up, Kurt hugs him back just as fiercely.

“Dad,” he says, once he’s back on his feet, “this is the Norse God of Thunder, Thor.”

Mr. Hummel stares at Kurt, then at Thor. “Not a fairy tale or PR stunt?” Mr. Hummel asks.

“Nope,” Dad says, giving his cameras are watching, must show all teeth smile. “Not all the myths are true, of course, but Thor’s the real deal.”

“Well, alright then,” Mr. Hummel murmurs. He looks at Dad, at Blaine, at Captain America and Thor. And then he looks at Kurt. “You alright, Kurt?” he asks.

Kurt nods. “SHIELD saved us from the kidnappers,” he says. “And Loki’s dealt with them, anyway.”

A tiny smirk flits across his face.

“Loki?” Mr. Hummel repeats.

“That is why we have come to speak with you,” Thor says. “Loki showed an interest in your son.”

“An interest,” Mr. Hummel repeats again. “And not a fairy tale.” He sighs. “Ah, fuck.”

0o0

“So,” Kurt says, curled up on his bed with Blaine, “my mom’s a supervillain god. And your dad is a superhero.”

“Looks like,” Blaine agrees, watching in wonder and lust as Kurt twirls a knife in his hand. Kurt smirks when he throws it at the tiny scrap of cloth already pinned to the wall.

The knife lands just below the other one. Blaine swallows.

Kurt smiles at him, pulls him close, and whispers into his ear, “I love you.”

“I love you, too,” Blaine says, kissing him.

Chapter Text

"Love, come on," Kathryn calls. "It's your bedtime."

Kurt pouts at her; Burt smiles, standing in the doorway. He's home early tonight, and so happy to be able to finally see Kurt before he's all tucked up.

"Daddy's home," Kurt hisses at Kathryn. "I can't go to sleep!"

Burt muffles his laughter with his hand. Kathryn simply pats the bed beside her. "Up here, Kurt," she says. "Daddy will read to you."

Kurt lights up, rushing over and bouncing onto the bed. "Really?" he asks, looking over at Burt.

Nodding, Burt walks over, settling next to Kathryn. Kurt crawls onto his lap, shoving the book at him.

"Poetry?" Burt asks. Well, the kid likes 'sensible' heels (which, Burt still doesn't know what they are, but Kathryn picked out some Kurt loved, so.) so what's poetry after that.

"Jabberwocky!" Kurt demands, flipping the book open. His little face is so fierce, and Burt can hear the laughter Kathryn is holding in.

"I'll leave you boys to it," she says, kissing Kurt's forehead and Burt's lips.

Burt stretches out, holding the book in the air above him; Kurt settles along his side, listening avidly as Burt reads. The made-up words give him pause, but Kurt yells them with force, giggling.

“Daddy,” Kurt mumbles as Burt tucks the blanket around him. “Am I a beamish boy?”

“The beamiest,” Burt promises. “I’ll see you in the mornin’, kiddo.” He kisses Kurt’s forehead and flicks the light.

Kathryn is reading one of her murder-mysteries in their bed, and she grins up at him. “Your son is a good boy,” she announces. “He got in a fight protecting a garter snake today.”

“Really?” Burt asks in surprise, stripping off his shirt and jeans. “I wouldn’t expect our fussy kid to like creepy-crawlies.”

With a delicate shrug, Kathryn sets aside her book. “He favors the unlikable,” she says, eyes caught in the shadows and dark green for a moment. “He told me the snake was only trying to escape, anyway. He provided the distraction.” She smiles. “Burt, your son understands about allies.”

Burt gives her a quick glance, then looks at the book; it’s a historical murder-mystery. Well, that explains her odd mood.

“Come to bed,” Kathryn says. “A hard worker deserves a reward.”

(In a year, Kathryn and Kurt will be in accident. Kathryn will die on impact; Kurt will survive without a scratch.

In a year, Kurt will throw all his books around the room, and rip the children’s poetry volume apart.

In a year, Kurt will scream for his mother, will talk to her like she’s still there, and will often fall asleep on the floor of his parents’ room, curled up beside his mother’s wardrobe.

In a year, Kurt will find a garter snake in the yard and decide to adopt it. He’ll name it Jori and carry it around like a toy, and tell his father that one day, he’d ride the Jabberwock, wielding the vorpal blade, and his mother would rule the world.

“Of course, kiddo,” Burt will say, determined to be strong for his little boy.)

Chapter Text

Kurt does not pray. He sits in the chair next to Dad’s bed, and he holds Dad’s hand, and he closes his eyes, turning inward to grasp the tiny little flame at his core, and he calls, Mama?

Kurt! Mama replies, the flame shooting upwards and spreading out, filling his entire body with warmth. Some of it goes into Dad, through their joined hands, making him stronger. Oh, Kurt, Mama says. “Child, when is the last time you slept?” Kurt doesn’t flinch from the fingers suddenly on the crown of his head. He keeps his eyes closed.

“I’m here now,” Mama says, sounding like the Mama in his memory, the Mama in his dreams – not the villain on the evening news. The Mama Dad loved. “Rest, love,” Mama whispers, fingers trailing down Kurt’s cheek. “Your father will be fine, I swear it.”

Kurt is exhausted. He’s weary, and he hurts. So he sighs, rests his head on the blanket next to Dad, and listens to his mother hum a lullaby from his childhood. The little flame dances in time with the tune, and Mama will make everything better.

That afternoon, Kurt himself has been awake for only three hours when Dad finally stirs. Mama is gone, of course. Kurt stands back far enough to let the nurses and doctor do what they must, but close enough to see Dad, to hear Dad, to feel Dad, and he smiles, diving into the little flame, shouting, He’s awake, he’s awake, thank you, I love you!

Mama sends him a hug and a smile and, I’ll see you tonight for your lesson, godling.

Kurt will do anything Mama asks, because Dad’s awake and knows who they both are and anything Mama wants could never be wrong.

Chapter Text

On Blaine's first birthday as Kurt's boyfriend, he really doesn't know what to expect. They've been together for half a year, Kurt's so very happy and excited, and he's extravagant at the best of times. Blaine tried telling Kurt he didn't need or want much beyond maybe a birthday make-out session in privacy, but Kurt's been smirking all day and Blaine knows something is coming.

Dad's assistant/boss Ms. Potts already called to let Blaine know his present is on the way (and it might even be something he can use – Ms. Potts is much better than Dad at choosing appropriate gifts), the Warblers have claimed him for tomorrow since everyone knows Kurt has first claim, and Mom cooked all his favorite foods for breakfast. It’s been a good birthday so far.

But Kurt smiles and says, “Come with me.” Kurt leads him to the car and drives him out of town, to a quiet spot halfway between Lima and anywhere else, and Kurt hops out of the car and hurries around, opening Blaine’s door and holding out a hand.

Blaine grins, ducking his head shyly, but lets Kurt help him out. And then they stand, wrapped around each other, with only the sky and sun watching (unless Dad has the satellites pointing at Blaine again, but he still hasn’t told Kurt who his father is, so he won’t mention that yet), and Kurt says, “I made you something.”

He pulls back, reaching into his pocket for a small wooden box. “It’s not much,” Kurt says, balancing it on his palm.

It looks like a ring box. Blaine gently takes it and lifts the lid, and it is a ring: simple, silver, a slim band with a twisty design over the entirety of it. “What does it mean?” he asks, holding it up for a better look.

Kurt smiles brightly. “It’s supposedly a protection sigil,” he says, shrugging elegantly. “I just thought it was pretty.”

Blaine puts it on the third finger of his right hand, leaning back in to Kurt. “Thank you,” he whispers.

“There’s more back at your house,” Kurt tells him, arms going around him. “I have it all plotted out with your mom and the Warblers.”

Laughing, Blaine kisses him again and again and again.

(Blaine doesn’t notice the ring glow, or the silver streaks that shoot up his arm and then all throughout his body, flashing once before fading entirely.

He won’t notice anything at all odd until he’s thrown into the back of a van and lands badly, and his arm should be broken – but isn’t.

Of course, almost immediately after that, he learns that Kurt’s mother isn’t quite dead, so it all works out.)

Chapter Text

"Brother," Thor calls into the storm, "I would speak to you." No response, so he continues, "I met the boy today."

"And?" Loki demands, stepping out of the air. "Did he seem like a threat to you, brother?"

As is his wont lately, Loki twists Thor's favorite name for him. As it always does, something inside Thor's chest winces. He did – does - love his brother. He always will. But, with Jane's and human texts' help, Thor has come to see the part he - and so much of their childhood - played in Loki's fall.

"Both yes and no," Thor answers. "He has your way with words."

Loki smiles. For a moment, it is not his supervillain smile, but the one he wore when they were boys and Thor had caught some trick of his. "He is my son," Loki says quietly. "But his father is truly a good man."

Thor watches him; Loki is thinner than he should be. Thinner than he ever was at home. "Are you well?" he asks. "I noticed - your attack earlier. It seemed that your magic was lacking."

Laughing, Loki waves a careless hand. "That was a trick, brother," he says, almost warmly. "Had my son not been there, it would have been marvelous. But he was."

"We found the men," Thor says. "In pieces. That was well done of you." He, more than anyone on Midgard (save, perhaps, the boy) understands how possessive and protective Loki can be.

Loki nods in acknowledgment. A moment of silence passes, and then Loki asks, "What will your humans do with my son?"

More than anything, Thor wants to reach out, clasp his brother close, and make him realize that no one need be his enemy. Back when they were boys, it was so simple. "Nothing, Loki," he says softly. "The child is no threat."

He could be. Thor knows that well. But at the moment... he is simply the lover of Stark's son, and Loki's own flesh, young yet.

And if he were ever to become dangerous, Thor knows no human could touch him anyway.

"Thank you, Thor," Loki says, stepping back into the shadows.

"Fare thee well, brother," Thor calls after him, turning back to the storm.

Chapter Text

Loki knows that he is cursed. His children are cursed. Ragnarok will come, no matter what, and it is on his head, and his children, and the cycle shall continue on.

Liars are not to be trusted, even when they speak the truth. Children of the Liesmith are judged before ever they are met, for his blood runs true. So say all.

Even the most human of his children, son of a mechanic, raised in an eyesore of a town – now that they know, Thor’s companions will look for lies on his face, in his voice. They will look for falsehoods and twisted tales and all of the favor he gained before will be lost beneath the knowledge that Loki Silvertongue carried and bore him unto the world.

Mama, the child calls through shadows and flame. Stop worrying. He laughs, wolfsong thrumming in the sound. What will be, will be, the child says firmly.

Yes, Loki replies. He does not want to destroy the world, not at all. And whether the end comes or no, there are still plans and plots to be finalized, allies to woo, and mortals to mark as beyond touch.

Thank you, he says to his son, before turning his gaze again to the minions waiting for his command.

Chapter Text

"So," Blaine's dad says, "I hear you love my kid."

Kurt smiles, saying, "Yes, sir, I do. Quite a lot."

"Hmm." Mr. Stark stares at him for a long moment, then goes back to fiddling with something on his workbench.

Kurt thinks about asking what he's doing. About why Mr. Stark brought him down here; Blaine is upstairs with Ms. Potts, probably talking about the birthday party tonight. Blaine insisted on throwing his father a celebration and inviting... well, everyone. Kurt knows it can only go poorly, but he's been nothing but supportive.

"So, you bein' with him isn't some trick to get to my team?" Mr. Stark asks, almost off-handily.

“I didn’t know he was your son until after we started dating,” Kurt says, knowing it won’t be believed. Not now that everyone knows who his mother is. It’s the truth, anyway.

“My kid loves you,” Mr. Stark tells him. “And I like you. We all do.”

Kurt keeps quiet, waiting. Mr. Stark looks up, meets his eyes, and asks, “Can you promise not to break his heart?”

And no, Kurt can’t promise that. But he wishes he could.

Mr. Stark nods, twists his lips bitterly, and says, “Get back upstairs.”

Chapter Text

Six weeks after they meet, a week into Kurt’s enrollment at Dalton, the evening Blaine learns about Kurt’s fascination (and skill!) with Sais swords, Blaine asks him, “Why didn’t you ever use these to intimidate the bullies into leaving you alone?”

Kurt smiles down at the blade in his hand, twisting it around his fingers. “I’ve only been practicing for a little while,” he says. “I’d probably hurt myself.” The explanation sounds half-finished, so Blaine waits silently, watching Kurt watch the knife.

“If I started threatening people who hurt me,” Kurt finally says softly, the Sais going faster and faster, “I wouldn’t be able to stop at just words, at just caressing the skin.” He grips the knife suddenly, stopping all motion, turning his head to meet Blaine’s eyes. “I never fought back,” he says “because I knew it would spiral out of control.”

He spins around, letting the blade fly from his fingers. It hits the bulls-eye.

0o0

Blaine never saw his father much. Even before Iron Man, Tony Stark was a busy man and Blaine knew that. He actually feels guilty, now, for how little he felt when the world thought Dad was dead. He’d seen the man five times in ten years, and when Mom sat him down for ‘bad news,’ he expected her to say she had cancer, or Grandma had died, or they had to move to some little speck of nothing somewhere.

Instead, she said, “Blaine, your father went missing in Afghanistan. He’s… he’s dead, baby.” She was crying and pulled him into her arms.

He cried, of course. He was a sympathetic crier and always had been. But he didn’t know the man.

Three months later, he was crying with his mom again when the world learned that Tony Stark lived. And then Dad took him for the summer, determined to bond, even if it killed them both.

0o0

Kurt looks like his father, though Blaine didn’t see it at first – Mr. Hummel is broader in every sense, and harder, where Kurt is almost fragile-looking, except where he’s sharper.

Kurt is like a blade. His dad is a tire iron, or a crowbar.

The first time Blaine saw a picture of Kurt’s mother, he was shocked. She looked just like her son. They were both beautiful, all ice and angles, and Kurt had her cheekbones. When Blaine turned back to the picture after glancing at Kurt for a comparison, her eyes had changed from stormcloud grey to iridescent green; but he blinked and they were grey again.

Kurt had his father’s eyes, Blaine noticed that evening, when Mr. Hummel frowned at him from across the table. Kurt scowled at his father, Mr. Hummel raised an eyebrow, and Blaine said something nonsensical about football just to see the identical expressions cross their faces.

Kurt, physically, looks like his mother. But he mirrors his father, and they are so alike.

0o0

After Dad became Iron Man – and told the world, in that arrogant, irreverent way of his – he didn’t want Blaine to acknowledge him, and he didn’t acknowledge Blaine. After the summer of bonding, it was like Blaine didn’t even have a father anymore (falsely implying, of course, that he ever did).

Mom promised, “Baby, after all the fervor dies down, he’ll visit again.”

“I don’t care,” Blaine said. “He can do what he wants. I’ve gone this long without a dad – I don’t need one now.”

“Blaine,” she called as he stormed upstairs.

He ignored her.

0o0

 

Blaine wants to ask Kurt what his powers are. He knows about the improbably perfect aiming, and apparently some sort of shielding ability, but what else? Loki seems capable of everything.

Kurt’s mother is a shapeshifting supervillain god. Blaine’s father is a genius, billionaire, playboy philanthropist who is also a self-proclaimed and self-created superhero. Kurt inherited untold amounts of power and a silver tongue. Blaine got… messy dark hair.

Two days after Blaine learns just who Kathryn Hummel actually was, Loki appears in Blaine’s dreams. “Hello, Blaine,” he says. He’s wearing normal clothes – a suit like one of Dad’s, except Kurt would call it more fashionable and probably be impressed. His hair is slicked back, and a storm is swirling in his eyes.

Blaine is terrified. Loki smiles at him. “Don’t worry,” Loki says soothingly, reaching out to pat Blaine’s shoulder. “My son loves you. So long as he is content, you are mine to protect.”

Hearing that… doesn’t really help. At all. And Loki just keeps smiling. “I’m not here to threaten you,” Loki assures him, still smiling, hand still on Blaine’s shoulder. “I’d just like to get to know the human who managed to capture my youngest child’s heart.”

That pings something inside Blaine, deep down, in the tiny part that does stupid things and gets so angry and has no idea what the word ‘limits’ means.

His spine straightens. He meets those stormy eyes without flinching, and he demands in his most dangerous tone, “Why did you let the bullying get so bad?”

Loki had to have known. If he cares as much as he claims to. (He tore those kidnappers apart. Some pieces are still missing.)

“My son is strong, as you well know,” Loki says, voice sibilant and cold as ice. Blaine hears the woman from the pictures, Kurt’s mother. “Had anyone ever attempted what their puny little words threatened, they would have been summarily unmade.”

“Un-unmade?” Blaine echoes faintly, his anger gone and replaced by the complete understanding that this man is not human.

“Unmade,” Loki says succinctly, with a sharp, toothy smile. “Have pleasant dreams for the rest of the night, Starkson. You are a worthy match for my child.”

When he wakes up, the only thing he remembers is Loki’s smile.

Chapter Text

When Kurt is six, he falls out of a tree. He lands on the shovel Mama had been using to plant pretty flowers in the garden.

Kurt should've died. He'll realize that much later.

0o0

When Kathryn's baby boy is six, he falls out of a tree. She's on the other side of the yard, watching a dog across the street chase a cat up the fence, and she turns just in time to see Kurt land on the shovel.

Kurt should be dead on impact. The shovel bit deep into his jugular.

Kathryn throws herself forward, instantly at his side, hands on his neck, and seals the wound. She knits everything back together, until only a slight cut remains, mostly healed into a minor scar. Fatal wounds can’t be totally erased.

Kurt wakes up crying. Kathryn leaves everything in the yard and carries her son to his room, where she curls up with him on his bed, softly singing a lullaby.

0o0

Mercedes asks Kurt about the scar once. They’re in glee; Kurt’s been slushied three times since the first bell, locker-checked twice, and called fag so often it really doesn’t even matter –he doesn’t count name-calling anymore.

“Where’d you get this scar?” she asks, reaching out to touch it.

He leans out of reach, so casually it seems like he was moving before she even spoke. “Fell out of a tree,” he says, shrugging.

Mama’s been dead for ten years. Kurt’s been studying Norse mythology for seven.

Loki’s been on the news for thirteen months.

“Looks nasty,” Mercedes comments.

Kurt shrugs again. “Could’ve been worse.” He lifts a finger, tracing along the slightly raised line.

His back should be heavily bruised. His arm should’ve broken last year, when he landed on metal containers in the dumpster. His head should’ve split wide open, when he caught a stair after being shoved a month ago.

He’s lucky. If Mama was anyone else, he’d have died at six years old.

Chapter Text

"I'm dreaming," he says, kneeling on the dirt.

"Yes," his mother says.

"A warning?" he asks, looking up at her, then past her at the sky.

"Don't let this happen," she says, kneeling beside him. "You have the power, child. You have the knowledge." She kisses his temple, places a hand on his arm. "If this comes to pass..."

"It won't," he promises, icy determination and a pure, all-encompassing rage melding together inside him.

A dream. A warning.

A fresh grave and a stone with a name, a row of graves stretching from one horizon to another, a sky on fire and dirt full of ash.

“Don’t worry, Blaine,” he whispers, leaning forward to kiss the name. “This won’t happen.”

His mother pulls him into a strong, world-ending hug. He wraps his arms around her and asks, “Will you tell me who?”

She murmurs a name. The wind howls, thunder bellows, and the rage in Kurt’s heart has a target. He glances back at the stone. “I’ll save you,” he swears.

He wakes up.

Chapter Text

"Hail, Burtson," a deep voice calls. Kurt stops mid-step, then spins around to stare up at the God of Thunder.

"Thor?" he asks in disbelief, gaze darting around for the rest of his team.

How the hell did Thor sneak up on him?

"Nephew," Thor says, giving him the most delighted grin. Kurt's only ever seen its like on dogs, basking in their person's approval. “We have much to discuss.”

Kurt steps back (hopefully) out of reach. “I haven’t done anything worthy of arrest,” he announces. “Or detainment, or kidnapping to Asgard, so –”

Thor’s expression saddens. “I’m not here as an agent of SHIELD, or as Prince of Asgard, nephew,” he says gently. “I would like…” He sighs. “I’ve only seen my brother across the battlefield. Please. Join me and talk of Loki.”

“I,” Kurt begins, then pauses. “You,” he tries again. Then finally, “What?”

Inclining his head regally, an elegant move Kurt learned from his mother that’s apparently an Asgard royalty thing, Thor says, “I miss my brother. I see so much of him in you. Please, Kurt Hummel, son of Burt and Loki… share a meal with me and speak of the adventures shared with your mother, my brother.”

After a moment of just staring at Thor, completely shocked, he says, “So, to clarify: I’ll talk about my childhood with my mother. And you’ll talk about your childhood with your brother?”

“Yes,” Thor declares firmly, smiling again.

“Sure,” Kurt says. “C’mon home, I’ll throw something together.”

Thor continues to beam. Kurt finally understands why Mama always used to grin at any and all Golden Retrievers they ever saw.

Chapter Text

Later, much later, after SHIELD has come and gone, after Blaine and Finn are calmed down, after Mr. Stark has put away his checkbook and Uncle Thor lowered Mjölnir, after Dad pulls Kurt into his arms and mutters, "What the hell were you thinking?" Kurt will shudder out a sigh and just breathe.

0o0

Mama is in his dreams that night, threading her fingers in his hair, one hand pressed against his heartbeat. They are both soaked to the bone, holding each other in the rain.

"You are my son," Mama finally says. "We are possessive, and protective, and do not hesitate to find vengeance." The words aren't comforting, but Kurt nods, letting the truth flow through him anyway.

“I know,” he whispers, letting the little flame deep inside swell until every vein in his body is full of warmth.

Mama leans in closer, her own wildfire burning bright.

“I can make them all forget,” she says quietly.

Thunder booms. Lightning strikes.

Kurt says, “Don’t.”

0o0

SHIELD wants to bring Kurt in. Coach Sylvester, Thor Odinson, and Tony Stark refuse to let that happen.

Kurt thinks, though, and finally mentions it to Blaine (but no one else) that the only reason SHIELD leaves him alone is because nobody – nobody – wants to see what Loki might do if Kurt suddenly vanishes one night.

After all, Loki has a few other kids he could call on for help. No one is quite sure how much of the mythology is story and how much happened, but that’s not something SHIELD wants to find out, either.

(Not that SHIELD could vanish Kurt. But he doesn’t tell anyone that.)

0o0

A few days after the incident, Finn sits down next to Kurt. “I’m sorry,” he says. “I should’ve been a better brother. I’ve been acting like a douche.”

Kurt shrugs. “It wasn’t your fault, Finn. There’s nothing anyone could’ve done.”

That is a lie.

0o0

Coach Sylvester levels a sharp look at him. “You were slow, Porcelain. You let him get in a free shot. Why?”

Kurt has heavily considered that in the week since the incident. He’s finally back at school. Blaine isn’t glaring at everyone anymore. Finn’s still shadowing them to and from class, and probably will be for a few more weeks.

Nobody even looks at Kurt, if they can help it. He’s not invisible or hated anymore. Now he’s feared.

“I wanted to see if it hurt,” Kurt says.

That is a lie.

He really likes being feared.

That is not.

(Kurt is his mother’s son.)

0o0

Dad sits him down and asks quietly, “Kurt, what are you gonna to do after graduation?”

Blaine and Finn are arguing about videogames in the den. Carole is laughing her way through Hitchhiker’s Guide.

Kurt smiles at his dad and says, “Me and Blaine are going to New York.”

That is a truth.

Dad steadily looks at him. “Will you… are you gonna join Loki?”

Finn shouts something. Blaine laughs loudly. Carole shushes them, but she’s giggling too hard to be understood.

Kurt meets his father’s eyes and says, “Maybe one day.”

Dad lets out a deep sigh. “Gotta admit,” he says, “I hoped for an outright no.”

Glancing away, Kurt murmurs, “I hate lying to you.”

0o0

Blaine kisses Kurt beneath a cloudy sky, rain pounding down.

Kurt asks, “Will you love me forever?”

Thunder booms. Lightning flashes.

Blaine promises, “Till all the stars fall from the sky.”

Kurt smiles sadly, pulling Blaine back in for more kisses, ignoring the rain.

Blaine doesn’t think that’s a lie.

Chapter Text

When he first met Kurt Hummel, all Tony knew about the kid was that his father was a mechanic, he sang pretty damn high for a boy, and Blaine was head-over-heels about him.

Well, and that he conducted himself well as a hostage. Not a lot to go on.

Then Loki attacked headquarters for whatever insane reason that week, saw the kid in SHIELD’s custody, and proceeded to flip the fuck out. Tony had never seen Loki act like that before.

And Tony may not be the world’s best father (apparently, that’s Burt Hummel), but he can recognize another panicking parent, and holy fuck, right?

Holy fuck. Loki’s got a kid, and that kid is dating Tony’s kid, and there is not one goddamned thing Tony can do about it.

.

Tony does believe Kurt when he says he fell in love with Blaine before realizing whose son he was. The thing is, that’s not the case anymore.

Tony may not be the superest of superheroes, but he is on the Avengers. And Kurt is Loki’s son. Loki’s a supervillain.

No, it’s worse than that: Loki is an insane, shapshifting, supervillain god. A god, okay? And not the friendly kind, like Thor. Loki’s the kind who turns intestines to sludge and makes it rain, like, shit. He makes shit fall from the sky. That’s the kind of god he is.

And his son is dating Blaine.

And, still, not a thing Tony can do about it.

.

And despite his parentage (a god and a mechanic, in case you forgot), Tony does like the kid. He’s funny, he’s smart, he’s not afraid of Nick Fury. Anyone who can annoy Nick Fury by not being impressed by him? Is pretty cool.

And if Kurt was exactly the same, minus being Loki’s son? Tony would be thrilled about him dating Blaine.

But he is Loki’s son. And Tony knows the exact odds of Kurt following in Loki’s footsteps.

And Tony is terrified that his son will follow Kurt, and one day, SHIELD might arrest Blaine for something Kurt made him do… or Blaine might even end up dead, because of some trick, some plot of Loki’s.

And there’s not a single thing Tony can do about it.

Chapter Text

They vote him queen and they don’t know that he’s the son of the prince of two realms. They vote him queen, and while some may have meant well, most of them didn’t.

He feels a brief, sharp pain, and then it’s washed away by a tidal wave of rage that freezes him from the inside out, and he has to escape that room, that tiny little gym in a tiny little town, he has to get out before he obliterates them all.

Blaine follows him, Blaine with a silver ring on his finger.

Kurt is so cold. He’s taken the dumpster dives, the slushy facials, the locker slams, and even a goddamned kiss. (He really should have seen that coming, but, honestly, violence to simulate affection? That’s so Asgard.)

“Kurt, hey, wait!” Blaine calls after him, and Kurt stops in the middle of the hall, eyes closed tightly, hands clenched, breathing deeply, in out in out.

He is so cold. He’s never been this cold before. It shouldn’t be that big a deal.

Child? Mama asks from across the world, pausing in whatever he’s doing. What’s happened?

Wolfsong plays in the back of Kurt’s mind, and the crashing of waves upon the shore, and hoofbeats, and knives upon knives. So cold.

“Kurt,” Blaine says, grabbing Kurt’s hands. “Kurt.”

Will you kill them? Kurt’s sister asks and, for a moment, everything stops. Mama waits for his word.

“No,” Kurt whispers, and his heart thaws as he feels Blaine’s fingers tighten around his.

As you wish, his sister murmurs, and the world breathes again.

Kurt lifts his head to look into Blaine’s eyes. “I thought things had gotten better,” he says, and it’s not entirely a lie. They had all hidden it better, those petty children, but Karofsky had grown as a person, somehow. Was it such a stretch to think the rest had, as well?

Apparently, it was. He takes a deep breath and smiles at the sweet boy who’s tried so hard to save him, and he says, “I’m stronger than them, and I’m not going to let them win.” (Blaine won’t know how true that is for a few more months.)

If any of the students in this hellhole had any idea… You’re too forgiving, a wolf growls. You should punish them, a serpent hisses, surfacing for just a moment. A horse simply tosses his head with a snort, and twins tell him, A quick slice would end most of your problems.

Kurt looks Blaine in the eye and says, “I’m going to get coroneted and show them all.”

The Lady of the Dead laughs in the furthest corner of Kurt’s mind. I have noted every injury you should’ve had, godling.

Kurt walks back into that gym, holds his head high, makes some quip, and when Karofsky runs away, dances with his boyfriend in the middle of a crowd who looked the other way for the better part of three years. Who would still look the other way.

Blaine’s arms are warm around him, Blaine’s eyes are warm on him, and Blaine is so happy it drowns out his fear at simply being there.

If anyone else ever tries to hurt you, Kurt promises, they will be unmade.

(In a few months, Kurt’s mother will keep that promise for him.)

Kurt wants to kiss his boyfriend and not care who watches. But Blaine’s not ready for that yet, and as much as the fury is still seeking an outlet, Kurt’s not quite ready for mass-murder.

(Not yet.)

I love you, he thinks, looking at Blaine as his friends all join in dancing. You’re mine forever.

.

On Monday, he’ll walk into school and no one will know that part of him is frozen. A few people will call him Queenie or curtsy, but most will pretend it never happened. It shouldn’t be worse than the bruises or broken bones his mother saved him from, it shouldn’t be worse than a stolen kiss or a death threat that could never be carried out – but, somehow, it is.

.

They vote him queen, and for a moment, he thinks about killing them all. Not a single one of them knows how close he’s come before, or will again.

He stares at Figgins, and then he retreats, and the ice closes in on his soul.

.

He is Loki’s son, the youngest of Loki’s brood, and so far, nobody knows he exists. The ice melts as he holds Blaine, and for a few more months, Loki is able to keep him secret.

Chapter Text

Kurt Hummel had never in his life wanted a dog. They were loud and messy, and whatever comfort could be derived from cuddling a dog would pale in comparison to the mud tracked into the house.

After Mama’s death, Kurt started dreaming of a wolf. He knew it was a wolf and not a dog, but it stretched out next to him and nuzzled into his hesitant petting. Kurt had no idea how to touch a dog. Snakes he could pick up, no problem, but the furred creatures he’d avoided, and this wolf was bigger than Daddy’s truck. (That’s how Kurt knew it was a dream.)

The wolf lay beside him and said his name was Fenrir and spoke about Mama, though he called her Papa. At first Kurt had been confused, but after Fenrir explained about slipping and sliding skins (like a snake!), Kurt understood. He thought it’d be marvelous to shift his little boy shape into something different, something big and strong and beautiful. Something that could’ve kept Mama with him and Daddy.

After months of dreaming, Fenrir crouched before him and said, Climb on my back, little brother. The rest of our brood want to meet you.

.

Kurt dreamed of different adventures every night for a month.

He and Fenrir went first to a great plain full of horses and Fenrir howled until a magical horse thundered up to them, eight-legged and powerful, the King of Horses. He was Sleipnir, Mama’s youngest until Kurt. He was the only other one Mama had carried.

Fenrir took Kurt to the shore, where the ocean roared and the waves crashed, and Fenrir howled again, until a giant snake lifted his head out of the water, and he was Jörmungandr, the World Serpent, the oldest of Mama’s children.

They went to a tall apartment building and Fenrir shrank himself to the size of a large dog. Kurt pushed the button for the top floor and as they rode up, Kurt asked Fenrir rapid-fire questions, since the others lived in the wild. But it looked like New York outside, a place Kurt had wanted to visit for as long as he could remember. The Newsies sang there. (Kurt really liked Jack.)

Two men stood in the hall when the elevator opened. One had dark hair and blue eyes, the other blond and green, and they were both grinning.

“He’s delectable, Fenrir,” the brunet said.

“And so small!” the blond added.

Kurt glared up at them. “I’m eight!”

Both men and Fenrir laughed. “Well, c’mon, little man,” the blond said, holding out a hand. “I’m Nari, he’s Váli. We’ve got movies and cake waiting in the apartment.”

Daddy had warned Kurt about strangers, but Fenrir was with him (Fenrir had brought him), and if these two were in the adventure, then they were Mama’s kids, too.

Nari and Váli were funny and nice, and they taught Kurt how to fight with his fists, and the rest of his body. Like someone from those silly old kungfu movies Daddy watched. Fenrir had taught Kurt to go straight for the throat, to put someone down so hard they wouldn’t get back up. Sleipnir had taught Kurt to run faster than the wind, and Jörmungandr to breathe underwater and swim faster than lightning.

Kurt was still too little to really use their lessons, though. And when he asked for something really dangerous, Nari said, “Dad will teach you knives later.” He grinned. “Dad really likes teaching people how to use knives.”

Váli nodded. “It’s our favorite weapon, but Dad – ooh, he’s somethin’ else when he’s usin’ a blade.”

Fenrir gave a small growl and Váli held up his hand. “Hey, brother, I’m just tellin’ the truth.”

Nari smacked his twin upside the head. Kurt giggled.

“Fine, whatever,” Váli said, rolling his eyes. “Guess I shouldn’t mention that we’re assassins, either?”

Kurt looked at Fenrir. “What’s a assin?”

Fenrir growled again. Nari hissed, “Váli!”

Váli laughed.

.

When Kurt woke up, he told Daddy that he really wanted to go to New York.

“One day, kiddo,” Daddy promised.

.

The last adventure Fenrir took Kurt on was to a land of ice and darkness. Ghosts followed them but, bent low over Fenrir’s back, Kurt wasn’t afraid. He thought the landscape beautiful, and he told Fenrir so.

“He’s lovely, brother,” a voice whispered on the wind.

Kurt quieted, looking around, and stilled when he saw her, his only sister.

“I am Hel,” she said gently, voice like teardrops and starlight. “I am the Lady of the Dead and this is my realm, where all those who die spend eternity.”

“You’re wearing a mask,” Kurt said after a moment. She looked like Mama, but it was fake, and Kurt wasn’t sure how he knew that, or why he blurted it out so rudely.

But Hel laughed. It sounded sad. “I did not want to frighten you, Kurt. Most people find my true face – unappealing.”

Kurt slipped down Fenrir’s side and took a few steps toward her. “Show me, please, Lady. You can’t be scarier than Daddy after I redecorated the den.”

She laughed again, this time sounding like Mama, sounding happy, like the way laughter should. “What did you do to the den?”

Kurt smiled. “I painted the couch.”

Fenrir laughed, too, and Hel – changed. Kurt studied her for a long moment, tilting his head, before he realized what was different: half her face was dead.

She waited patiently for Kurt’s reaction, and he glanced back at Fenrir for direction, but Fenrir just sat there.

“Can you show me how to hide myself?” he asked. “It seems like a good trick.”

Hel stared at him, then she smiled and nodded. “I’m sure our brothers taught you useful things, Kurt, but I can show you magic.”

Kurt bounced in place. The kungfu was fun, the swimming was awesome, and the running was alright, but magic – magic was in another league entirely. When Hel slowly held out her hand, Kurt didn’t hesitate to take it.

.

As the years passed and Kurt grew, his dream-adventures with Fenrir dwindled. A part of him thought he’d gone crazy, but he researched the names he knew: Fenrir, Sleipnir, Jörmungandr, Váli, Nari, Hel – and Loki. Gods and the children of gods. Monsters and the Mother of Monsters.

But eventually, Kurt decided to believe, and so he embraced it. He started practicing what they had taught him in his spare time (which he had a great deal of), and when he was fifteen, Mama stepped into a dream and said, “It’s time, love.”

Mama taught him to throw knives, and how to slice neatly and quickly, and how to gut a man if needed. She refined his siblings’ lessons and promised to never vanish again. She praised Kurt’s iron control of his temper and abilities, since all his schools still stood and none of the kids had died yet.

Then she asked, “Would you like to meet your brothers and sister in the waking world?”

Kurt nodded, eyes wide and mouth open in excitement. Mama smiled and took his hand and they were somewhere else.

.

After Blaine learned the truth, he asked, “How many of the myths are real?”

Kurt shrugged. “The important ones.”

.

(One of Fury’s minions – very high up on the chain of command – suggested taking Kurt into ‘protective custody’ once his relationship to Loki was revealed. Kurt, he said, was the only one of Loki’s known kids they might be able to control.

Later that same day, the man’s head was found in Fury’s office, the rest of his body scattered throughout the building in obvious, highly visual places. However, like the attempted kidnappers who originally brought Kurt to SHIELD’s attention, parts of him were never found.

The warning was clear, as were the consequences.

Thor, along with researchers and mythology experts, explained about the forces Loki could bring to bear on anyone who tried to interfere with his youngest child. He left some things out, of course. And a couple things, the humans refused to believe.

But there is a Lady of the Dead. And the World Serpent.

And Kurt is happy in Ohio, pretending to be a normal teenager, with his normal teenager boyfriend (who will be immortal until Kurt no longer loves him).

A Great Wolf shadows his steps.)

Chapter Text

Kurt and Blaine’s first day back after the kidnapping is good. Finn and Puck shadow them the whole time, trading off with Dave as needed. Finn had trouble trusting Dave at first, but Kurt set him straight and now all Finn sees is someone trying to make up for past mistakes. Like Finn in a shower curtain dress, and Puck taking on the whole football team when it was already too late.

At school, no one knows what actually happened. Finn told the glee club that Kurt and Blaine came down with the same thing and had to stay home for a week. But they were kidnapped and brought home by SHIELD, and Finn can’t tell anyone. It really sucks. He still has no idea why they were taken, or why SHIELD decided to get involved. He’s just glad Kurt is back unhurt. Well, and Blaine, too, of course.

Most of the bullying has stopped this year, especially since word about Kurt’s knives got out. He’s never responded violently, but now the jocks are hesitant to push because there’s always a first time.

Finn convinces Puck to help him shadow Kurt and Blaine, just to be safe. It’s been a week since anyone saw McKinley’s only out gays. Finn wants the day to be perfect.

It is.

.

Tuesday and Wednesday are good. Nobody cares about Kurt or Blaine, and Kurt breaks all their hearts singing some Broadway song, and Blaine duets with Artie, and Kurt’s working on something spectacular for his first month as Class President.

But Thursday… Thursday goes horribly wrong.

Azimio’s been stewing since the start of the year, when Dave quit the football team to focus on academics and continued protecting Kurt instead of pushing him around. He’s gone along with Coach Bieste’s orders to join the play, and he’s been docile enough around the glee club, but something finally sets him off.

Later, Puck will tell Finn about the way Dave watches Kurt, and the shy little smile he gives Kurt whenever they talk, and how Azimio saw a conversation between them, and just… exploded.

Finn shows up at the tail-end, when Azimio is on the floor crying, and Dave’s unconscious, head in Kurt’s lap. Blaine gets there just after Finn and hurries to Kurt’s side, dropping next to him. Teachers come running, trying to make the kids get back to class, but everyone’s caught up by Kurt, by the look on his face, and Azimio shaking, and Kurt’s holding Dave, the kid who drove him out of school once.

Something’s not right here.

But Blaine pulls out this voice from somewhere, so much bigger than he is, and when he tells everyone to go, they do. Except Puck and Finn and the teachers.

And Blaine says, kneeling by Kurt, “It’s okay now, Kurt, please, Kurt –”

Kurt blinks. The dangerous, feral expression fades. His eyes dart around, from Finn to the teachers to Azimio, still on the floor, staring at Kurt with –

Finn can’t believe it. He looks at Puck, but Puck’s just as lost, and Azimio is cowering.

Kurt’s lips curve in the coldest, most terrifying smile Finn has ever seen. Worse than Quinn. Worse than Coach Sylvester.

But then Kurt looks at Dave, still unconscious, still spread across Kurt’s lap. “Wake up, Dave,” he whispers.

Finn shuffles forward, dragging Puck with him, as Mr. Schue and the school nurse run up. Everyone is focused on Azimio now, everyone but Finn and Blaine and Puck, and whatever the fuck SHIELD did with Kurt, Finn thinks it has something to do with Azimio – whimpering, crying, unable to look away from Kurt.

Kurt. Kurt and his knives, Kurt and his icy disregard, Kurt who looks so much like his mother (who he said taught him the knives, but she’s been dead for ten years). Kurt, Finn’s brother.

“When did Hummel get so fuckin’ scary?” Puck mutters. Finn shrugs, waiting for someone to tell him what to do.

.

Dave has a concussion. Azimio has a breakdown. Rumors run rampant at school, saying that Azimio attacked Kurt, and Dave took out Azimio, and no one witnessed what really happened. But Puck tells Finn about Dave’s soft smile, and a few conversations Dave and Kurt’ve had, and so much of last year makes sense now.

The authorities don’t do anything. There isn’t even an investigation, as far as Finn can tell. Dave’ll be okay. Azimio’s at the hospital. Azimio’s parents don’t raise a fuss – or if they do, no one at school knows about it.

Finn has no idea what’s going on, or why. Yeah, Kurt and Dave have been friendly (and, apparently, Dave has some kind of crush on Kurt?), but why would Kurt do – whatever he did – for the guy who chased him out of school?

He can’t ask Burt; Burt’s livid, about one rant away from storming the school. Mom’s as the in the dark as he is, it seems. Kurt’s in his room, door shut, with Blaine.

“Burt,” Mom finally says sharply. “Tell me, please. Tell us.” She looks toward Finn for a moment. “We’re part of this family.”

Burt slumps down, rubbing a hand across his face. “I don’t really know,” he says. “I thought – I hoped.” He tears his cap off, throwing it onto the couch.

“Just tell us,” Mom says. “I love that boy just as much as if I were his mother.”

Burt looks at Mom, at Finn, and he laughs sadly. “Life would be so much easier if that was the case.” He sighs, sinking down into his chair. “Kathryn wasn’t real,” he murmurs, holding out his hand to Mom. She settles next to him, under his arm. “She was… a vacation, I guess.”

“Not quite a vacation, Burt,” a low, smooth voice says from behind Finn. He spins in place to see a beautiful woman – familiar. His eyes widen as he recognizes her from pictures on the wall.

She is Kurt’s mother, and she’s dead, but she’s standing there, smirking, and she says, “He’s a gifted child, our son. Your eyes and your heart, but ice in his veins.” Her smirk smoothes out into that cold smile of Kurt’s, and she continues, “My ice in his veins.”

Mom says, “What?” but Finn has a terrible feeling in his stomach.

“Kathryn,” Burt whispers, as he and Mom stand up.

“You were the most fun I’d had since Svadilfari,” Kurt’s dead mother says, walking across the room to settle on the couch. “The years I spent with you were wonderful, my love. I did love you, whether or not you can believe it, now.” She looks at Mom, her smile thawing. “You, I like,” she says, and something in Finn unclenches.

“Who are you?” Mom asks, glancing from Burt to Finn and then back at Kurt’s dead mom. “Kathryn Hummel is dead – isn’t she?”

“Yes,” Kurt’s dead mom says. “She died ten years ago, when I had to leave.”

“You faked your death?” Finn blurts out, ducking his head when all three of them look over.

“Yes,” Kurt’s dead mother says again. She looks over her shoulder, and Finn follows her gaze: Kurt is standing in the doorway, Blaine peering around him. Kurt’s mother looks back at Finn, at Mom, and she says, “The name you would know is Loki.”

Loki.

Finn’s mouth drops open and he says, “Fuck.”

.

Well. Loki.

Of course Finn knows who that is.

And SHIELD’s involvement makes sense now. Holy fuck, with a side of fucking shit. He wants to call Puck, so damned bad.

But Loki is looking at Kurt, and they’re having a conversation with their eyes, and Mom is squeezing Burt’s hand so tight Finn can see both their fingers turning white. Kurt nods, Loki smiles, and then she’s gone.

Finn can’t think of a thing to say, and he’s gaping at his brother, his brother the supervillain’s son.

“Kurt,” Burt says.

“Not yet, Dad,” Kurt replies, and Finn has no idea what that means, but Burt sags with a sigh, muttering, “Thank fuck.”

“Burt,” Mom begins, her voice as sharp as she can make it. “Explain everything.”

Kurt turns and goes back up the stairs. Blaine follows without looking back.

Chapter Text

“You’re coming with me, right?” Kurt asks late one night, head resting on Blaine’s heart, their fingers tangled together.

Blaine’s heartbeat is slow and steady, his breath warm against the top of Kurt’s head. “Of course,” he says quietly, eyes closing.

“Even though…” Kurt’s voice trails off.

My mother. What’ll happen. Your father. I won’t turn away.

“Yes,” Blaine promises, clutching Kurt’s fingers, kissing his hair. “Even though. I’ll follow you, Kurt. I’ll follow you anywhere.”

Kurt lets out a small sigh of relief, tilting his head to smile at Blaine. “I love you,” he whispers.

I’ll keep you safe.

Chapter Text

Sometimes Kurt wishes he’d inherited his mother’s shapechanging abilities, just so he could shift into a cat and claw something to pieces. Whenever those moods hit him, he grabs the closest knife instead.

He always knew. Sure, for awhile he denied it, ignored it, pretended to be something else. But he always knew.

.

Graduation is right around the corner. The seniors are either panicking or excited, or something in-between. Kurt and Blaine have both gotten into NYU; Rachel managed to earn a spot at NYADA, apparently an amazing school neither of them had ever heard of before senior year, which – whatever. Blaine’s dad has a piece of real estate lined up for them, and Finn, too, whenever he makes up his mind what he wants to do.

Kurt will miss his dad, but it’s not like he can’t take a step and be home. And, more than likely, the only people he will ever talk to from McKinley are Finn and Rachel. And, to be perfectly honest, he’s fine with that. He’s relieved. He’s managed to keep from killing everyone for four years, including his ‘friends’ every time they decided to be judgmental or turn away when he needed someone. And once he’s in New York, he’ll come back for Dad.

He’s not sad to be leaving high school or moving on with his life. He’s been looking forward to graduation ever since he realized that it meant he could leave and go somewhere else, somewhere he’d be important and happy.

He even asked Mama to take him, once, not long before he joined New Directions. “I would, my love,” Mama had said, form flickering between the woman in his memories and the man who had just started making the news. “I would, but your father would be destroyed and I cannot guarantee your safety. Not yet.”

“Not yet?” Kurt parroted, latching onto that timorous possibility. There had been nothing in Lima at the point except for Dad.

“When the time is right,” Mama promised, smile as sharp as a knife. “When you are grown and ready. We’ll know.”

“Okay,” Kurt said, nodding resolutely. “I can stay in this cesspool ‘til then.”

Mama’s smile became a grin. “Now, pay close attention to this spell, Kurt. Transforming matter is no simple thing.”

Kurt rolled his eyes. “It is for you.”

Mama laughed, nodding in that arrogant way Kurt could still barely manage despite practicing for months. “Magic is in your blood, my boy, and the same ice that’s in mine.” Straightening up, Mama said, “Watch carefully.”

Kurt did.

He also successfully completes high school without murdering anyone, despite a deeply-in-the-closet homophobic bully with a crush threatening his life.

Kurt really should get credit for that, but only his boyfriend and family (sort of)know what he can do, so. He doesn’t get any accolades, except from Coach Sylvester, who commends his self-control.

But. High school ends. New York awaits.

Before graduation, though, Schue gives the seniors one last assignment: to sing a goodbye song. And while everyone else is panicking about having to go out into the big bad real world, Kurt sketches his siblings and drags Blaine into the corners for quick make-out sessions.

Kurt isn’t nervous at all. He knows what waits for him in New York, and while he knows the answer is still not yet, the day it will be finally grows ever closer.

.

“What song are you singing?” Blaine asks, smiling up at Kurt. Kurt flicks flour at him and Blaine ducks, laughing. “C’mon, you can tell me,” he wheedles, pouncing and wrapping himself around Kurt.

“Stop distracting me,” Kurt orders, rubbing flour into his hair. “Go shower. I’ll put these in the oven and meet you upstairs.”

“You’re the one who made me messy!” Blaine argues. “You should wash my hair.”

Kurt raises an eyebrow. “Get out of my kitchen,” he commands haughtily. “Or no cookies for you.”

“Fine,” Blaine pouts, and trudges upstairs. Kurt smiles after him before turning back to the almost-done dough.

.

Kurt sings last. He’s clapped for everyone else, and cried with them, and held them, and gone on shopping ventures. He’s tutored and cajoled, and after next week, he’ll know if it was enough.

Either way, he’ll be done.

But right now, he’s standing in front of his friends, about to sing the last song he’ll sing in this room. He lets his eyes trail over them all – Finn and Rachel, holding hands; Tina and Mike snuggling; Puck slouching on the back row, Lauren next to him; Brittany leaning forward and poking Rory in the back while Santana smirked; Sugar trailing her fingers along Artie’s arm; Quinn’s head resting on Joe’s shoulder; and Mercedes and Sam, fingers tangling together as the music builds.

And Blaine. Blaine smiling at him.

This is goodbye to most of these people. He’ll never see them again after next week, and he won’t miss them.

They will see him, though. That’s guaranteed.

“Today,” he begins softly, “you were far away, and I didn't ask you why.” He looks at Mercedes, then Artie, then Tina. He continues, “What could I say? I was far away. You just walked away, and I just watched you.” Smiling a little bit and shaking his head, he asks with a small shrug, “What could I say?” He looks at Brittany, for a moment, and then back to Blaine.

“How close am I to losing you?” he asks, softer still, but his voice strengthens a bit when Blaine firmly shakes his head.

He’s never sung this slow, and the words feel so strong. “Tonight you just close your eyes and I just watch you slip away.” The music is like a heartbeat, firm and slow, and he asks again, “How close am I to losing you?”

Blaine smiles at him and mouths, Not close at all.

Kurt raises his voice on, “Hey, are you awake? Yeah, I'm right here. Well, can I ask you about today?”

Looking around the room, at these children who don’t understand – except for Finn, who clutches Rachel’s hand tight – Kurt finishes, “How close am I to losing you? How close am I to losing?”

Not close at all, he thinks. They all clap, and some of them cry, and that’s Kurt’s final solo at McKinley.

.

Blaine and Kurt fly to New York together. Rachel and Finn will come a few days later. Blaine’s dad wants to give them the guided tour, and Fury wants them to visit SHIELD – just for a check-up, he says.

Fury looks long and hard at Kurt, before excusing them to go with Mr. Stark. “Be good, kid,” he orders.

Kurt simply smiles. “I’m the best, sir,” he says demurely, respectfully lowering his eyes.

Mr. Stark scoffs, though he tries to disguise it as a cough. Fury simply barks a laugh and waves them out.

.

After Blaine locks the door behind his dad and Ms. Potts, after Kurt lays down the protection sigils, after they’ve consecrated their bed – Kurt asks, “Would you like to meet my family?”

Blaine stares at him for a moment, then his eyes widen. “You mean? Really? Yes!”

“Only some of them can come here,” Kurt says. “We’ll visit the rest later, but.” He takes a deep breath and someone knocks on the door.

“That’s them,” Kurt whispers.

He’s in New York. Blaine hasn’t left yet. Oh, he wishes Blaine never will. Maybe, if he plays everything perfectly, Blaine won’t.

But for now. For now, Blaine is just on the edge of panic, and three of Kurt’s brothers are waiting in the hall. So Kurt laces his fingers with Blaine’s and leads him to the door.

.

Kurt can’t change his shape. He’s as immortal as his siblings, with a bit more standard magic than all but his sister, and he knows their fate as well as the rest.

But he’s in New York, and Blaine told the twins the worst jokes imaginable, and Fenrir approved of him. Life is as wonderful as it’s ever been, and tomorrow – well, tomorrow is tomorrow.

He trails his fingertip along the blade of his favorite knife and changes the channel when the newscaster starts talking about Loki.

Chapter Text

Sue Sylvester had known from the first moment she ever laid eyes on Porcelain that he was a truly dangerous child. The fact that McKinley is still standing and none of the bullying vermin have been turned into exploding pustules of blood is a testament of Kurt’s iron control.

So when, after a week’s absence, Porcelain pops into her office, his boytoy trailing after him, and tells her, “You were right about Nick Fury’s commanding presence. He’s absolutely stunning,” it’s not really a surprise.

“SHIELD finally got ahold of you, Porcelain?” she asks, giving him and the boytoy a thorough look-over. Porcelain looks the same as ever, except his smile is slightly sharper.

About damn time he decided to quit hiding. McKinley’s in for quite the shock.

.

Will Schuester has never quite known what to make of Kurt Hummel. Kurt was such an enigma – he appeared so fragile, but every time Will ever tried to help, Kurt looked at him with ice in his gaze. That was why Will started looking past the bullying.

Kurt was a smart kid. He never broke beneath the bullying, but he also never fought back. Not physically, anyway. He had a sarcastic, smartass response to every slushy, every locker-shove, and every dumpster-dive.

And then that whole thing with Dave Karofsky happened. Will had no idea what to do, so he did nothing, really. He does feel bad about that.

But now Kurt’s back. And he’s sharper. He doesn’t even really seem to notice Will anymore.

Will supposes that’s fair, if only for all the times he walked past the dumpster.

.

After SHIELD drops Kurt off, after Thor (the literal God of Thunder, what the fuck) explains about Loki (oh, Kathryn, seriously, what the flying fuck?), after Tony Stark and Captain America… Burt wishes he still drank. He really really wishes he still drank.

Kurt kisses Blaine goodbye, thanks Stark, Thor, and Captain America (Captain America! In Burt’s house! Holy fucking shit!) for their help, gives Burt another quick hug, and goes upstairs.

“Nice kid you got there,” Stark says, standing next to Blaine (his son, Burt’s kid has been dating Tony Stark’s son, what has his life become?).

Thor’s eyes look dewy, as he stares after Kurt. “I have another nephew,” he murmurs. “Oh, Brother. You need not hide him from us.”

“Thank you for your time,” Captain America says, smiling at Burt. “We’ll head out now.”

“Yeah, of course,” Burt replies. “Uh, thanks. You guys, you, uh – you do a good job. I feel better for knowin’ you’re out there.”

Captain America’s smile grows wider and brighter.

Stark claps Blaine on the shoulder. “C’mon, kid,” he says. “Let’s get you home.”

After they’re gone, Burt shakes his head. Then he goes upstairs to talk to his son.

.

When Loki woke up, he was surprised. That Váli and Nari were glaring at him was less of surprise, or Fenrir curled up next to him on the bed. “Our sister doesn’t want to see your face for a long time, old man,” Váli said.

Loki sighed, letting his eyes close again. Fenrir rested his head on Loki’s chest. The twins quietly left the room.

“I should’ve known,” he murmured, running his fingers along Fenrir’s ears. “I have never been like them.”

Oh, Papa, Fenrir rumbled. Just rest.

Loki reached out, feeling for this world he’d fallen to. Earth. Midgard. He’d been here before, of course, to see the place the twins lived.

Kurt’s beloved New York sang to him. Such a grand place. He started plotting immediately, knowing the twins would help him. He’d have to find a place away from New York, of course. Kurt would never forgive him if something happened to his dream city.

And now, Thor’s little band of heroes have learned of Kurt’s existence.

So Loki goes to him, that night, assuming Kathryn’s shape again, and sings Kurt’s favorite lullaby. She holds her son, her youngest, and makes all sorts of promises.

But Loki is the God of Lies, even to those she sired or bore.

“Don’t worry, Mama,” Kurt whispers, just before Loki leaves. “I know how it ends.” He kisses Loki’s forehead and burrows further under the comforter, and Loki’s heart burns colder than the heart of Jötunheimr.

SHIELD knows about Kurt. How long before Odin does?

It shouldn’t matter. Kurt’s father is a Midgardian. He was born on Midgard.

“What if we could rewrite the ending?” Loki asks, pausing.

Kurt looks up at her. “That’d be marvelous,” Kurt answers. “But can we?”

Loki smiles. “Trickery,” she says. “I’m good at that.”

Chapter Text

Blaine was snatched from his art history class by a group of gunmen who kept calling him Stark’s kid, so it hit the internet way before anyone thought to call Kurt.

Which was a mistake, actually, but Kurt would deal with SHIELD’s lollygagging later. After he roasted a few idiots alive.

Would you like some help? Mama asked, the twins chiming in their own offer just after.

No, thank you, Kurt replied. I’ve got this.

.

Kurt thought about doing subtle. Maybe calling Mr. Stark after he figured out where the kidnappers had taken Blaine. He really did think about it for almost twenty seconds before deciding he’d rather go in and massacre them all because he was so very tired of being ‘good.’

Giving in was easy. Refraining was hard. So Kurt – stopped. There were a dozen men in the building, and Blaine tied to a chair, barely conscious. It wasn’t clear if they wanted money or Blaine to make them something (which he couldn’t, because he didn’t inherit his dad’s technological genius), and they would get whatever ransom they demanded right before the Avengers arrived to arrest the lot of them.

And that… just wouldn’t do. Because they took something of Kurt’s, something he loved very much, and while Mr. Stark might kill the fuckers, he couldn’t when wearing the Iron Man armor. Something about being a hero. A good role model. Merciful.

Kurt wasn’t a hero, and he had no mercy to give. And he was done hiding.

They took Blaine, and Blaine was bleeding, and Kurt had made a promise.

So he called his knives to his hands, dropped the invisibility, and killed them all. And after it was done, when broken pieces littered the floor, Kurt asked, Mama, how do I unmake them?

And Mama was there, and he said, “Watch me, child,” as his fingers twisted and reality followed his will.

.

Kurt took Blaine home. He was woozy and didn’t remember much of the day. He should be far more wounded than he was, but he still wore Kurt’s ring and it protected him from everything but surface wounds. He cuddled against Kurt and wrapped his arms around Kurt’s middle, and grumbled when Kurt carefully pulled away, and Kurt pressed a kiss to Blaine’s lips, the tip of his nose, his forehead.

“I’ll be right back,” Kurt promised and rubbed at Fenrir’s ears as he walked out of the room. Váli and Nari were on the couch arguing about what to watch, wrestling for the remote; neither noticed when Kurt took it and put on the news.

All the talking heads knew was that Tony Stark had a kid and the kid had been kidnapped. Speculation ran rampant. Kurt shook his head in disgust, pulling out his phone.

“Kurt!” Mr. Stark said, sounding panicked and breathless. “Kurt, we haven’t found him yet, but we’re tracking the GPS - ”

“I have him, sir,” Kurt interrupted smoothly. “He’s safe and sleeping in our bed.”

Something exploded on the other end and then Mr. Stark demanded, “You have him? He’s alright?”

“Yes,” Kurt said. “You can come see for yourself, if you like – but just you, Mr. Stark. And his mom – can you arrange for her to come visit?”

“Sure, of course,” Mr. Stark agreed. “I’ll be there in a minute.”

“Sir!” Kurt said sharply. “Only you. That’s important.”

Mr. Stark was silent for a long moment. Kurt looked at his brothers, who looked back with dangerous smiles.

Kurt still wanted to kill something.

“Just me,” Mr. Stark said quietly. “Got it.”

.

Blaine’s secret was out, of course. SHIELD and Mr. Stark assured everyone that his kidnapping was a prank gone wrong, but Director Fury asked Kurt to come in for the debrief with Blaine.

He would’ve gone, anyway.

Of the kidnapping itself, Blaine only remembered distant shouting. He had bruises, a split lip, and a barely-sprained ankle. He didn’t know what the men wanted. He had no idea how he got home.

“And you, Kurt?” Director Fury asked. “Do you know how Anderson got home?”

Kurt smirked, just a little. “My mom and brothers, I believe,” he said, holding Blaine’s hand, stroking his thumb across Blaine’s knuckles.

“Loki and your brothers?” Director Fury repeated. “I don’t suppose you could tell me about these brothers?”

“No, sir,” Kurt said kindly. “I’m sure my uncle has regaled you about them at great length. I’d just be telling you the same things.”

Director Fury heaved a disgusted sigh. “Get outta here,” he ordered. “Kid, I’m glad you’re alright.”

“Thank you, sir,” Blaine said earnestly, catching his balance on Kurt. Mr. Stark met them at the door and Kurt paused, turning back. He waved Blaine and Mr. Stark on.

“The next time someone takes Blaine, don’t wait to tell me,” Kurt said.

“Will you wait for the Avengers to get there?” Director Fury asked, trying to intimidate him with a look. “Or the proper authorities?”

“Of course,” Kurt lied with a guileless smile.

Director Fury scoffed, rolling his eye. “Catch up with your boyfriend and be glad I’m not arrestin’ you for bein’ a pain in the ass.”

“Thank you, sir,” Kurt simpered. “As always, it’s been a pleasure.” He flounced out, playing the persona of McKinley’s drama queen to the hilt.

Blaine was in the cafeteria with the Avengers and Thor smiled brightly as Kurt sauntered in. “Nephew!” he called.

Most of the SHIELD minions didn’t know Kurt was anything but Stark’s future son-in-law. But everyone knew who Thor’s brother was. So Kurt figured he’d been well and truly outed now.

He glanced around the cafeteria, at all the dumbstruck stares, and he smiled the tiniest of smiles.

The Avengers made room for him at the table and Blaine curled into him, and Kurt didn’t have to hide anymore.

.

After Blaine fell asleep, Kurt settled onto the couch with Fenrir curled up next to him, head on Kurt’s knee. Váli sketched Jörmungandr while Nari straightened up the kitchen, and Kurt let the mundane noises lull him.

“Bedtime,” Váli said, scooping him up. “The first is always the most exhausting.”

Váli and Nari deposited him beside Blaine and tuck them both in. Nari told him, “Fenrir will stay the night again, but Váli and I have to head out.”

Kurt nodded, rolling over to drape himself around Blaine.

.

In the morning, Kurt texted Váli, Can I go on your next job?

Váli replied, ;).

Chapter Text

The first time Quinn Fabray saw Kurt Hummel on the news, a complex on fire behind him, and a supervillain she recognized beside him, before they both vanished – she thought, Oh. So much makes sense now.

.

Something about Kurt had always struck Quinn as off. He didn’t act like the rest of the peons, like what he was. At McKinley, he’d been the lowest of the low. Quinn didn’t notice him all that often, but when she did – he was adorable, in a dweeby sort of way. And he had such fire. Every time the jocks knocked him down, he got back up and held his head high. And when he finally decided to start being himself, well. Even when she was at the top, she could admit in the safety of her own head that Kurt Hummel had style.

A part of her had wanted to be his friend. A part of her wanted to tear him down just because she knew he’d rule the world someday.

But McKinley High was hers. And he was a nobody.

Watching the news – he wasn’t a nobody anymore.

The whole world saw him now.

.

Quinn thought about calling Santana, the only person from McKinley she still kept in contact with. Or trying to track down Finn. He had to know, right?

There was that incident, after Kurt and Blaine both missed a week of school. Azimio Adams did something, tried to attack Kurt, and no one ever agreed on what happened. As far as Quinn knows, no one ever got the whole story. But Azimio was gone after that. Azimio was gone, and Puck kept giving Kurt slightly apprehensive looks, though he couldn’t explain when Quinn asked.

And the knives. Artie couldn’t shut up about them after auditions for West Side Story. And the way Kurt just looked at people sometimes. Quinn didn’t notice at the time, but looking back, and flipping through the scrapbook of New Directions Rachel made for them all – something predatory in his smile. Like he could kill them all and refrained from the goodness of his heart.

She closed the album with a shudder. Then she rewound the news and watched it again.

.

She never called Santana, or tracked down Finn. But she read every article, watched every report, and never told anyone she had known Kurt Hummel, once upon a time, when he wore a rainbow of slushies and she’d ruled the world.

And when Kurt Hummel married Blaine Anderson-Stark, Quinn didn’t receive an invitation.

The foolish, pregnant girl she had once been felt hurt by that. The wise Yale graduate she’d become was only glad.

Chapter Text

The first person Kurt ever considered killing was Noah Puckerman. He’d suffer through days of bullying and go home, lie in bed, and imagine all the ways he could do it. Slowly. Cleanly. Bloodily. So very bloodily.

At the time, he still didn’t really believe what he already knew.

But in hindsight… in hindsight, it is truly amazing that anyone got out of McKinley alive.

.

Once, Blaine asked Kurt why he put up with bullying. It was after Blaine realized how good he was with knives, after the first time he actually thought Kurt could’ve stopped it all.

It was just a different facet of the same thing, so Kurt gave the same answer. Quite simply, he explained, “If I started, I’d never stop.” He’d shrugged. It really was that simple.

If he started killing everyone he wanted to, everyone who tried tearing him down, everyone who left momentary bruises or should have broken his bones, there would be almost no one left.

.

The eighteenth person Kurt thought about killing was Sebastian Smythe.

If Kurt’s reflexes weren’t so quick, if he hadn’t pulled Blaine out of the way even as Blaine tried to do the same to him –

Sebastian Smythe would’ve died in that parking garage, with two show choirs watching. He would’ve have died messily, and far too quickly.

But Kurt has preternaturally swift reflexes and the slushy hit only air.

Before the slushy, Sebastian was an annoyance. It was almost cute, the way he panted after Blaine. Everyone should want Blaine because Kurt was secure in being the only one to have him.

After the slushy, Sebastian was considered a threat. That... is always a bad place to be, regarding one of Loki's children.

But Sebastian was only another kind of bully, and while annoying, no true threat. And Blaine hadn’t actually been hurt.

So Kurt imagined a thousand different deaths for Sebastian, but let him live.

.

The first time Kurt Hummel takes a life, he is twenty, and men have kidnapped Blaine, terrified him, made him bleed. For that, there will never be forgiveness, and no mercy. The only fitting retribution is death, and Valhalla’s doors will be closed to these men. They will go to Hel’s realm and suffer there eternally.

Well done, dearest one, Mama says, and Kurt smiles down at the corpses.

.

Kurt’s father is a very good man. That is unquestionable.

Kurt thinks his mother is marvelous, but he knows not everyone would agree.

Kurt managed to go two decades without killing anyone, though, despite the best efforts of most of his classmates. He really should get an award for that.

Instead, he flips through the folder Váli gave him (“Seriously?” he’d asked, raising an eyebrow. “Actual paper?” Váli had just raised an eyebrow right back.) and begins plotting how to kill his thirteenth person.

“Lucky thirteen,” he chuckles, and just smiles when Blaine looks over from his brownie.

Chapter Text

“Blaine, you know how much I like your boyfriend, right?" Dad asks. He sounds almost hesitant, which is weird, since he's normally so exuberant.

“Yes, Dad,” Blaine says, looking up from Dummy. He’s been playing fetch with the robot for nearly an hour now, waiting for Dad to finish his project.

“And you know that the team all like your boyfriend, too?” Dad continues without glancing over.

“Yes,” Blaine says again, setting down the pen he’s been throwing for Dummy. “Why?”

Because Blaine is twenty-one years old and he’s spent more time without a father than with him. Because Kurt is his, and he’ll fight anything he has to, and he’s got a ring burning in his pocket and another on his finger (and he looked up that protection sigil, and it doesn’t exist anywhere on Earth, but Kurt’s brothers and mom smile every time they see it).

“Blaine,” Dad says carefully, “you know what Loki is.”

Blaine stands. He pats Dummy on the head and Dummy backs up with a whine. “Loki is your sometimes ally,” Blaine replies, with a valiant attempt to control his temper. “And he’s Kurt’s mother.”

Dad sighs so long-sufferingly Blaine’s control almost snaps. “Loki is not a good guy, Blaine. He’s not human. Even when he’s our ally, we can’t trust him.”

Taking a deep breath, Blaine counts to ten. Then he says, “And what does that have to do with Kurt?”

Dad finally looks at him, batting away the holographic designs. “I asked him if he could promise to not break your heart,” Dad tells him. “And he couldn’t.”

Blaine stares at him for a moment, waiting. When Dad doesn’t say anything else, Blaine demands, “And if I asked you the same about Ms. Potts? Could you promise to not break her heart, Dad?”

Dad winces because of course he can’t. But he shoots back defensively, “It’s not the same thing! Loki’s dangerous, Blaine, he’s so fucking dangerous, and tomorrow he could decide he wants us all dead again!”

Blaine bites back his first, instinctive response of I’m safe from him because it’s stupid and naïve, and wouldn’t help. It’s true, though. Blaine knows it is, because Loki had smiled at him, shaken his hand, told him You make my son very happy.

And as long as he keeps making Kurt happy, which he can’t really see ever stopping –

But how can he explain that to Dad? All Dad will ever see is how little governs Loki, which is totally hypocritical, but Blaine can’t explain that, either.

So he threads his fingers together and strokes the ring Kurt gave him for years ago, and tells Dad, “Don’t make me choose.”

He loves Dad. He loves Mom even more. He likes his friends, the ones he’s made at NYU and in coffee shops across Manhattan and the Warblers he still talks to weekly and Rachel and Finn. He likes Dad’s team and some of the SHIELD agents who shadowed him after he got kidnapped from class and Ms. Potts and most of Dad’s SI minions.

But. He loves Kurt with everything in him. He loves Kurt so much it terrifies him, sometimes, when he’s listening to Kurt’s heartbeat. He can barely remember his life before Kurt, before he looked at Kurt and saw.

So he tells Dad, “Don’t make me choose.” Because it isn’t a choice. And he’ll fight anything that tries to keep him from Kurt, and he’s got a ring burning in his pocket and another on his finger, and he was a dumb kid once but he’s a man now, and he’ll choose Kurt over anyone or anything else.

Dad closes his eyes and nods sadly.

Dummy clicks at Blaine, so Blaine picks up the pen and throws it into the corner.

Chapter Text

First: Loki No-one’s-son is not a supervillain. Well, he is a villain, and he is super – but he has no plans to conquer Midgard. And he’d rather not trigger the apocalypse, either, but one doesn’t always get what one wants, does one?

“You’re talking pretentiously again,” Vali mutters without looking up from his McGriddle.

Loki rolls his eyes.

.

Second: The worst thing Loki has done on Midgard is blow up a few buildings, rearrange the constellations (he put them back after), and kill three hundred humans. Not at the same time, of course. And it’s not like the humans couldn’t use some culling – they are far past a safe population for their little rock.

He regularly battles the Avengers, his brother’s latest band of fellows, but his heart isn’t in it. He likes them better than Sif and the Warriors 3, anyway.

Not that that’s difficult. He likes-liked Laufey more than he likes the Warriors 3 and Sif. A thousand years of imagined slights will do that to a fellow.

You’re brooding again, Sleipnir says, gently butting Loki in the side with his nose.

Loki pats his shoulder and focuses on pleasanter things.

.

Third: Loki, late of Asgard, never of Jötunheimr, will return to Asgard only to burn it.

The only thing from that golden cage he cares about currently resides on Midgard and protects the little rock most vigorously.

Loki does not like being played for a fool. And he should have realized when Angrboða bore a serpent instead of an infant –

Magic can only explain so much.

Loki has thought of himself as a monster. But his children? Never.

You're angry, Papa, Fenrir murmurs, brushing against Loki's legs.

Loki gently rubs at his son's ears and turns back to plotting.

.

Fourth: Loki loves each of his children. Each of them is special and beautiful and amazing in a way that only one aesir has ever learned to appreciate.

Outcasts and unwanted, the lot of them. Cursed, too.

Gifted. So very gifted.

Loki doesn't want to destroy anything except the so-called Realm Eternal, and that is entirely personal. The rest of the universe holds no interest for him. He has walked and mapped every road, learned secrets and moved on.

But Asgard... he has business there.

"You're smiling creepily again," Nari tells him, handing over a mug of coffee.

Loki's smile widens, so sharp it'll cut a realm to pieces.

.

Fifth: From the moment Loki brought Jörmungandr home and saw the courtiers' reactions (and Father's apprehension, and Mother's well-hidden disgust), Loki knew how things would end. Unlike the favored, golden prince, Loki studied history. Loki memorized everything said by the prophecies forgotten at the back of the library.

When Angrboða bore Hel, Loki visited the Norns and asked a simple question: is it too late for things to be undone?

The Norns answered in one voice, Yggdrasil towering over them: never.

Loki returned home and kissed his daughter.

"You're worrying," Hel says, patting his hand with her living one.

Loki pulls her in for a hug, as ever unafraid.

.

Sixth: The first person to ever tell Loki he was less, he was wrong, he was nothing, had been one of Thor's friends. He was a warrior, one of Asgard's best. He also made time, every day, to stalk and terrorize Fenrir.

Fenrir had been so small, then. Just a pup. And everyone thought it such a fine game. He was just an animal, after all. What did it matter if he were the son of the second prince?

(Oh, yes, Loki learned many lessons in Father's golden halls.)

Loki did his best, but finally, he couldn't take it anymore. He told Angrboða to take their children and go somewhere far away, somewhere hidden, somewhere safe.

(Nowhere is safe for the children of the Ragnarök-bringer.)

And five hundred years later, when Fenrir was grown and magnificent, when Tyr hunted him without recognizing him, Loki led everyone else away astray so Fenrir could finally have vengeance.

You're plotting, Jörmungandr muses, shrinking down enough to twine around Loki.

Loki chuckles, shifting into a serpent so they can race across the oceans.

.

Seventh: Loki has had many children. Those that didn't inherit his magic either grew old and died or died young from the myriad of ways mortals can find to die.

Each of them was special. Each of them was loved.

Each of them died, all the same.

Only seven have some of Loki's magic.

Only seven will live to see Asgard burn.

"You haven't fully healed yet, have you?" Kurt asks, but his eyes are tired, and it's not a question.

Loki stares up at the sky and replies softly, "Have you?"

Chapter Text

Whenever Blaine prays, it’s to Kurt. Not because he thinks Kurt is a god or The God or whatever – no, it’s because Kurt saved him. Continues to save him. Has been saving him since they were both sixteen and trying to find their way out.

Kurt is Blaine’s past, present, and future. And he doesn’t pray that often, but when he does, he addresses his prayers to Kurt. And later, when he’s curled up against Kurt’s side, he’ll whisper the prayers into Kurt’s skin, just breathing him in, and he’ll know they’ve been answered.

.

Kurt has never believed in his father’s god, and he’s only ever prayed to his mother (and, he supposes, his sister, if those detailed, never-carried-out plans of death and mayhem count, and they probably do).

All of Kurt’s prayers have been answered, and when Blaine pulls him in and tilts his head back invitingly, and then murmurs into Kurt’s mouth, Marry me, Kurt murmurs back, Yes.

.

Once upon a time, Mercedes Jones took Kurt to church with her. She prayed for him and his father, for healing and hope. She entreated him to pray, too, because it was the only way she thought things might get better. She held his hands, bowed her head, and did her best.

It did nothing for him, of course, except spark his temper, but he supposes it’s the thought that counts.

She’s in Los Angeles, now, with a record deal and her first album on the way. She’s exhausted and exhilarated, and sometimes she thinks about calling up her old friend Kurt Hummel. She misses him.

She never does, though, because there’s just never enough time in the day.

.

The Anderson-Stark and Hummel wedding is small. It’s not a media circus, although attempts are made. Only immediate family is invited, and that includes both the Avengers and a pair of assassins whose reputation rivals the Black Widow’s.

Kurt and Blaine aren’t married in a church. Their first dance as husbands is to Katy Perry’s old song about skintight jeans and never looking back.

Váli flirts up a storm with Natasha Romanova while Nari dances with Clint Barton; Fenrir, Jörmungandr, and Sleipnir are magicked into human shape by Loki for twenty-four hours, and Fenrir follows Bruce Banner around like a puppy; Hel spends the reception talking about ‘40s style art with Steve Rogers and Maria Anderson; and Loki shares one dance with Burt Hummel. As the music fades into the next song, Loki kisses him gently on the lips and steps back. She looks like Kathryn Hummel, like no time has passed at all.

“C’mon, kid, dance with your old man?” Tony Stark asks the only child he will ever have. Blaine laughs, but goes to him, having already danced with both his mom and Carole Hudson-Hummel (Hudmel? That sounds better to Tony). Tony wants to ask a thousand questions, all variations on the same argument they’ve been having ever since he realized his son’s boyfriend -husband- was Loki’s kid.

But Blaine’s answer won’t change. Blaine’s mind is made up, and probably has been since he first took Kurt’s hand on that stairway.

So instead, Tony says, “I’m happy for you, kiddo,” Blaine beams up at him, and when Tony hands him off to Kurt for the next song, Tony can even smile for him.

He likes Kurt Hummel, really he does. The kid impressed him the first time they ever met, and he’s sharp as a whip, sarcastic to a degree Tony can appreciate, and Tony can see how much Kurt loves Blaine.

But Loki can’t be trusted. He-she-whatever – yeah, Loki’s been better lately, but that just means something’s in the works. Tony and his team have learned that the hard way.

“Hello, Mr. Stark,” Loki purrs, stopping in front of him and looking up with a smirk. “Would you be so kind as to dance with me?”

Tony looks over at Blaine, completely wrapped up in Kurt, gazing up at him with hearts in his eyes.

Yeah, Loki is their enemy a good portion of the time. And, yeah, one day Blaine will probably die because of something Loki has done.

But tonight is for Blaine.

So Tony pastes on his smarmiest smirk and purrs right back, “Of course,” taking Loki’s hand and spinning her around.

Tonight’s for Blaine. Tony’ll do anything for him, even dance with Loki.

Chapter Text

When the bullying changes, Kurt doesn’t tell anyone because it doesn’t matter. It’s not like he has any bruises to show. None of his bones have ever broken because of the locker slams, or those few times he let himself get caught too close to the stairs. And he doesn’t care what anyone in this town thinks of him, though it would be nice if the jocks quit throwing slushies on his clothes. (He broke that stupid machine three times before he gave up. Someone kept fixing it.)

But Kurt can take it. He can take it all. None of it matters because he knows he’ll be leaving. And he knows, even if only in secret daydreams, that he could kill them all, every single bully, every single person who looked the other way, every. single. one. of. them. He could.

And he takes pride in the fact that, day in and day out, he doesn’t.

So when Karofsky starts looking at him, starts lingering, starts shoving him harder, Kurt doesn’t even notice. And then, when he does notice, he just shrugs it off. New level of the same old crap – so what? Two more years and Kurt’s gone.

Whatever Karofsky’s problem is, Kurt doesn’t care. He’s reached the point where McKinley is an annoyance, and he’s only putting up with it for his dad.

When Schuester finally notices that Karofsky is doing his damnedest to make Kurt miserable, Kurt decides to actually say something – because McKinley isn’t at all safe, and if Kurt didn’t have Mama… well. He’d be in serious danger.

He’s not sure if telling Schue how he feels will make any difference, but it seems to, and then when the boys let him know exactly how they see him, he thinks Fuck this and drives the two hours to Dalton Academy. Why the hell not.

It turns out to be the best decision Kurt’s ever made, but seeing the future isn’t one of his skills, so for the moment, he just enjoys watching a gorgeous boy sing.

.

Kurt gets home late that night. He’d spent hours in that coffee shop, talking to Blaine about anything that crossed either of their minds. Kurt had never, in his life, connected to anyone like that (except Fenrir, but he doesn’t think his older brother who’s actually an ancient, magical, alien wolf counts).

They actually exchanged phone numbers, and after Kurt gets home (and fudges the truth a little) they text till all hours of the night.

Blaine had mentioned a little of the bullying he suffered before Dalton. Kurt glossed over Karofsky (because it wasn’t a big deal, really, not like Blaine’s, because Blaine could actually get hurt, and the thought of that makes something inside Kurt clench), and the next day, when Karofsky knocks Kurt’s phone right out of his hand, Kurt snaps.

That’s the only explanation, really. Because Karofsky had done worse (hell, Puck had done worse, since Karofsky hasn’t actually dropped him in a dumpster yet) but maybe it’s just the final straw. So Kurt, fingers clenched so he doesn’t do something Lima will regret, storms after Karofsky, follows him into the locker room, and finally shouts at him everything he’s been wanting to say but held back.

And because he’s got everything locked down tight so he doesn’t explode, he lets Karofsky get in his space, grab his face, and kiss him.

In the back of his mind, a wolf growls. Mama hisses, What?

Karofsky moves back in for seconds and Kurt shoves himself away, shocked to his bones. He covers his lips, staring at Karofsky, who looks panicked, turns, and runs away.

“What?” Kurt whispers, hand still over his mouth. Kurt? Mama asks, but Kurt assures him, I’m fine. Just… confused.

He wants to call Blaine. He needs to anchor himself, to find something safe and human. And he can’t tell Dad about this; it’d break Dad’s heart.

So he calls Blaine. He goes home, settles against the tree he once fell out of, and talks until it’s time to start dinner.

That night, he convinces his siblings and mother to leave Karofsky alone. Why, he’s not sure. Maybe it was the panicked look on Karofsky’s face, or the fact that Karofsky is actually half a year younger than him. Whatever it is, Kurt is adamant.

And then Blaine drives two hours to try and help, and it’s just the cutest thing.

.

Things would’ve continued on like that, with Karofsky getting creepier by the day, except Dad sees Karofsky mock Kurt and Finn for dancing, and when Dad asks a direct question, Kurt just can’t lie to his face. He’s tried.

But he still can’t mention the kiss. Why he thinks death threats are somehow better than sexual assault, he’ll never figure out.

Either way, Dad freaks the fuck the out.

And when McKinley lets Karofsky back in, that’s it. Dad can’t handle the thought of them being in the same zip code, much less the same building, so Kurt gets sent to Dalton.

.

Dalton isn’t Utopia, but it’s refreshing. The classes are harder, the people are nicer, and there’s Blaine. Kurt still hasn’t found something he can’t discuss with Blaine (well, except for his mother. and his siblings. at least he found a reasonable explanation for his knives.) and Blaine keeps flirting with him. No boy has ever flirted with Kurt before.

Kurt still plans to leave after graduation, but now the time isn’t dragging anymore. He looks forward to class, to lunch, to glee – Warbler practice. He feels challenged, and it’s amazing. He gushes about it to Mama at their lessons, and the twins tease him, and Fenrir tells him it’d be no hardship to wipe McKinley off the face of the planet, that all he has to do is ask.

And then Blaine serenades a Gap employee, gets drunk, makes out with Rachel Berry - and Kurt realizes that, of course, Blaine’s not perfect. Blaine’s just a kid. He’s still learning, still growing, and if he sometimes hurts Kurt’s feelings... well, they have time.

And every day, Kurt just falls further in love. No, Blaine’s not perfect. And he doesn’t know everything about Kurt, of course he doesn’t. Maybe he never will. But being around him makes Kurt happy. Even when Blaine gets every solo, even when he serenades other people. The sun is brighter around him, and Mama just sighs, kisses his forehead, and murmurs, This boy had better be good to you, love.

Kurt grins at him and nods, and then accidently sets a tree on fire.

.

Pavarotti dies, Kurt sings his grief, and Blaine kisses him.

Santana terrorizes Karofsky into apologizing, Dad and Carole can’t really afford Dalton for the long haul, and Kurt assures Dad that Karofsky is sincere. (He can tell; his mother is the God of Lies.)

Dalton was refreshing. But McKinley is where Kurt will learn how to be strong.

.

While New Directions is in New York, Kurt slips away to visit his brothers.

“You really should let us punish those fuckers,” Váli grouses, portioning out the bacon.

Kurt shrugs. “They’re not worth it,” he replies. “Plus, I’ll be out of there soon.”

“Yeah.” Nari grins, ruffling Kurt’s hair. “Gonna come live with us, kid?”

Laughing, Kurt ducks towards the table, bringing his plate with him. “Maybe,” he says.

He still needs to talk to Blaine about the future. Because it might have just been a crush in the beginning, just him latching on to the first person (who wasn’t blood) that ever saw him. But now… now, he can’t imagine a world where he doesn’t wake up and know Blaine is his.

We are possessive, and protective, Mama has told him more than once.

But those are all thoughts for the future. Right now, Váli is trying to dump his eggs in Nari’s hair, and Kurt really should break up the brewing fight.

Instead, he smirks and throws his biscuit at Váli.

Chapter Text

When Kurt was thirteen and thought himself dreaming, he told Mama, “I’m gay.”

At least once a week, Kurt dreamed about his mother. They would do normal things, like bake cookies, or go on walks, or shop till they dropped. He told her everything, and he thought he should tell her this, too.

He always felt better after his dream-conversations, like a thousand-pound weight dropped off. Like the fire rising in him banked a little. He knew it was crazy – Mama was dead. But still, he had conversations with her every week.

So he told her, “I’m gay.”

.

In three years, when he’d tell his father the same thing, Dad would say the same thing.

“I know.”

.

In the dream, Mama sat him down on the couch with a mug of hot cocoa and said, “You love who you love, sweetie.”

 

Religion had never been important in the Hummel household. Kurt knew that his father’s parents went to church every Sunday, but Mama never talked about hers, and instead of sitting down for boring lectures about being good or going to a terrible place (like Mickey from next door said his family did every week), Mama (and sometimes Daddy!) would go on adventures on Sunday – to the park on the other side of town, or to the lake, or to Columbus or Cincinnati.

Kurt has never believed in the god his grandparents worship.

After he accepts just whose son he is, he realizes why.