A/N - Okay, guess who it is. Yup, it's me again, Ana of Asgard. If any of you readers bother to read through this whole messed up Author's Note, then I will be surprised. If you go beyond that and review, I'll be touched and you will have literally made my day, AND I will probably make this a multi-chapter fic (5 chapters-ish) depending on how much people like it.
Why am I not updating Of Thunder and Mischief? Well, about that…. *looks around with shifty eyes* I'm sort of braindead on that right now. Natalie Rushman, being the darling she is, sent me a bunch of AMAZING ideas, but I only got them after I was halfway through this story.
How did I get this idea? Well, after watching the GotG (It's finally streaming on Netflix! Yay!), I got inspired by Gamora and her relationship with Nebula. In a way, it was sort of like Thor and Loki's broken relationship, though I imagine Thor and Loki were closer than Gamora and Nebula back in the day. I really wanted to write a Gamora and Nebula fic, but I knew I would never finish it unless Loki was in there somehow. Then I got an idea, if Loki got taken in by Thanos after he fell from the Bifrost, wouldn't Gamora and Nebula be there with Thanos? I'm a bit rusty on my Guardians of the Galaxy knowledge.
Okay, I think I covered everything. PLEASE review, it's the reviews that keep me going! Thanks for reading, and enjoy!
It was over a week before the screams began.
Gamora sharpened her knife, face a calm, serene mask as she impassively listened. The first time, it had horrified her, but Gamora had tucked her swirling feelings away after a look from Thanos. The second time, she knew it was coming but had much more efficiently hid her true thoughts.
This was what, the hundredth time? Gamora used to try to drown out the screams, but now she just listened to them with a strange mixture of pity and acceptance. Thanos' new victim was different, though. Gamora had expected the screams to start in a couple of days, if the idiot clung to his pride. Thanos loved it when they screamed, and the pain was usually over far more sooner.
Gamora had learned from experience.
However, this prideful fool had suffered silently, until Thanos finally broke him. Gamora felt a sting of regret as the first of the sounds started—she'd secretly been hoping for this one, that he'd hold out. The fact that he'd struggled through so far was an incredible feat in itself, though.
Gamora felt curious as to who this new, unfortunate prisoner of Thanos was. She made up her mind to go visit him. Later.
The voice was frightened, but managed to hold itself together. Gamora eyed the Chitauri guard with disinterest, idly tossing the saccioku root in her hands up and catching it deftly.
"Yes?" she snapped at it, watching the Chitauri as though it were an insignificant piece of dirt. She'd never had much of a good opinion about the Chitauri. They were foolish cowards, and why Thanos bothered with them was a mystery to her. Well, not so much a mystery. The Chitauri were as numerous and annoying as ants, which was good for an army. They were terrible cowards and would rather flee from danger than fight it—the problem was, they were so stupid they never really knew if they were in danger or not.
"Lord Thanos did not say anyone could visit the prisoner," said the guard, his grotesque features wide with fear and amazement at his own daring.
Gamora raised an eyebrow. "Is that so?" she asked calmly, but there was a thinly veiled threat underneath her nonchalant voice.
The Chitauri wasn't a complete idiot, however. "But I'm sure I can make an exception for you," came the hurried answer, and Gamora smiled thinly.
"Wise choice," she murmured sinisterly, enjoying the terror radiating from the guard. She placed her hand on the door, and with a flick of the wrist Gamora flung it wide open.
She had been mentally preparing herself earlier. The prisoner's appearance was going to be horrific, at the very least, and Gamora had conjured up the most revolting images she could to get herself ready for the less-than-delightful sight. Yet she had braced herself for a terrible image sprawled on the ground, that the sight that met her eye was so much more alarming.
The prisoner didn't even have a fleck of blood on him.
Not even the smallest little bruise. Gamora was practiced in the art of hiding her emotions, so she carefully masked her face over as she walked into the room. Yet her mind was whirling with questions.
She closed the door behind her, before leaning against the wall, biting slowly into the saccioku root. Gamora made her eyes flicker lazily over the prisoner, while in reality she was dutifully drinking in every detail.
He was chained up, his wrists cuffed and held above him, fastened to a long, thick link of iron that was driven into the wall. His ankles were chained together too, allowing only the smallest bit of moving room. The prisoner was dressed in a oak-green, light tunic that had black leggings underneath—simple enough clothing.
Gamora's gaze dragged up to his face. The prisoner's surprisingly handsome features were pale, accented with high cheekbones, a strong jaw, and his thin lips were curved into a mocking, derisive smirk. Black hair was carefully and meticulously smoothed back, and burning emerald eyes were boring into her dark ones.
But how the hell did he manage to look to perfect and undamaged, instead of the mangled mess Gamora had imagined him to be? Then it struck her.
Thanos' latest prisoner was a sorcerer.
Of course. It made sense, now. Gamora herself had no magic within her, but she knew a lot about it. It could internally heal at a rapid rate, too. Thanos loved those who could do that, and that explained why he chose this one.
But it didn't make sense, though. He did healed himself far too fast….or did he actually heal himself? With a jolt, Gamora realized that it was probably an illusion shielding the prisoner. It most likely drew a lot away from his own healing, but then, it was his pride that refused to let him be seen in the pitiful state he probably was.
His clothing informed Gamora almost instantly that the prisoner was Asgardian. A proud Asgardian…well, that was nothing new. A proud Asgardian sorcerer, that was something different. There weren't terribly many sorcerers on Asgard from what Gamora heard. Asgard considered sorcerers to be cowardly, so whoever this was, he must've been an outcast. Was he? Or was Gamora jumping from one thing to another too fast?
"Are we just going to keep staring at each other?" began the prisoner suddenly, jerking Gamora out of her thoughts. "I can keep staring at you if you wish…it's just that you're getting the better deal of the bargain."
Gamora felt surprised at the cool, mocking way he spoke, for al of the other prisoners she bothered to visit usually greet her with spit and curses. Despite herself, Gamora felt herself smile ever so slightly.
"We can talk," answered Gamora simply, taking another slow bite out of the sweet root.
"Let's start with names," said the prisoner. "Who are you?"
Gamora raised an eyebrow. "I'd have thought the answer was fairly obvious," she said, adding the lightest touch of surprise. "Why, I'm your room service."
He grinned crookedly, appreciating the humor. "Your rooms are not quite to my taste," he commented, the understatement of the year. He then shook his chained wrists pointedly. "And I have had better bedding."
"Then I'll contact my manager," Gamora said sarcastically, playing along, "and we'll do our best to make your…experience with us as comfortable as possible, Mr…." her voice trailed off, looking at the prisoner expectantly.
He watched her, carefully contemplating his answer. "Loki," he replied finally. "Nothing else. Just Loki."
"Loki," Gamora repeated, testing out his name and getting the feel of it. The name was ringing faint, distant bells in her head. She'd heard it somewhere, but where?
Gamora prided herself on her strong memory, and she was going to figure out who Loki was. She studied him, painstakingly filing the facts she'd noticed about him.
Sorcerer. Asgardian. Strong sense of pride….sarcastic, clever. Gamora eyed him again, watching the almost elegant way Loki managed to slouch against the wall. The strong, angular features of his face, the almost demanding way he spoke, the prideful lift of his head. This was someone who'd tasted finer life, Gamora guessed. A noble? A lord?
Then it struck her.
Loki…Odinson. The Prince of Asgard, though not quite as famous as his brother Thor. He was commonly referred to as the god of mischief, the Liesmith, the trickster. There wasn't much good said about him, at least not as much as the golden, handsome Thor.
"You lied," said Gamora, not accusingly. "You said that you were 'just Loki,' but you're not. You're Prince Loki Odinson of Asgard, aren't you?"
Loki didn't seem stunned by her declaration. "Nay," he contradicted quietly, "not anymore." Then Loki considered what he'd said. "Forget what I just said," he amended, "I was never an Odinson in the first place."
Gamora didn't press, and she glanced curiously into his eyes. Eyes revealed the most emotion in a person, Gamora had figured out, yet Loki's entire face was blank and expressionless. He may have said it to wring pity from her, but even if he had, Gamora didn't waste any of her sympathy on him. When it came to family problems…well, Gamora had quite a few. She didn't bother sympathizing with Loki, fine, maybe she felt the tiniest bit of understanding for him.
Did he find out he was adopted? wondered Gamora. That was the only thing that made sense, anyway. If his father had died, then Loki wouldn't disown him. Anyway, Gamora doubted Loki would open up to her.
"How did you end up here, enjoying Thanos' hospitality?" Gamora said, changing the subject. Loki smiled faintly.
"It's a long story."
Gamora pulled for the interrogation chair that was always in the corner of that cell. But she wasn't really interrogating him, not really. "I've got all day," she replied.
Loki narrowed his green eyes, probably mentally debating whether or not to tell her. He chose the former. "Very well, I'll tell you," Loki said, and so he did.
He started from the beginning, about his brother's coronation. How Loki let the Frost Giants into Asgard to stop Thor being crowned king, and how Loki carefully planned for Thor and his friends to recklessly run off to Jotunheim, then about Odin's rescue. Next he told her about Thor's banishment to Earth, hammer-less and powerless. Loki's discovered adoption, how Loki managed to seize the throne, Loki's betrayal of Laufey—his biological father, his near victory over Thor using the Destroyer, the battle on the Bifrost, and finally, when Loki let go and fell into the Void. He told her all of it.
It was strange, the way Loki recounted the events. Not emotionally. When he spoke of his adoption, Loki simply said it. And he didn't tell her any of his reasons behind his mad urge to kill Thor, or why Loki ruined Thor's coronation in the first place. Loki didn't bother excusing himself, but he didn't excuse Thor, either. It was like hearing from a history book, or a neutral party.
So Gamora couldn't really said she'd gotten Loki to open up to her, because he hadn't. He stated the facts, facts that could be uncovered easily enough if Gamora knew the right places to look.
"Why did you ruin Thor's coronation day in the first place?" Gamora asked, not expecting an honest answer. Once again, she was surprised when Loki answered at all.
"Because I knew he wasn't ready," Loki said firmly. "Thor made brash decisions, and was an arrogant fool, guided by his heart and not his head. He was too proud and too rash to become king, and Frigga and Odin were blinded by their love for him to see it."
"I'm supposing the arrogant foolishness runs in the family," teased Gamora, looking at Loki.
Loki raised an eyebrow. "You forget I'm not part of their family," he said, and Gamora didn't reply.
Her gaze was drawn to Loki's feet, which he tried to hide without seeming to hide them. They were no longer booted, but now they were bare, bloody, and raw, and the flesh was burnt. Gamora didn't flinch, but she looked up at Loki. His magic must be depleting, she realized, and felt a spark of pity.
Loki wanted to hold on to his pride, at least for a bit longer. Gamora didn't want to strain him anymore, and she respected his wishes. "I'd better be going now," she said, abruptly standing up.
"Room service," called out Loki when Gamora was halfway to the door. She didn't turn, but paused waiting.
"You didn't tell me your name," said Loki. Gamora smiled faintly.
"Gamora," she answered. Then she put her hand on the doorknob, and slipped out silently, leaving behind no evidence of her being there at all.