I can't believe Infinity War comes out tomorrow! This movie is going to kill me, I swear. This chapter is a little shorter than normal, but it is an epilogue of sorts. Thank you so much to Poosa-ard and krazylicious for following! I hope you enjoy!
~Infinity War comes out tomorrow!~
As Stephen sank to the ground, Tony pulled something out of a pocket in the ship. It was a razor. At Doctor Strange's quizzical expression, he explained, "Well, I've got to keep my Facial Hair Bro in top condition, don't I️?" Stephen snorted in response, shaking his head. Tony ducked through a doorway, presumably to the cockpit of the ship.
The sorcerer wanted to travel further into the ship in an attempt to find a more comfortable place to rest his wounds, but his lack of ability to walk somewhat hindered that. His efforts were interrupted as Spider-Man passed him before doing a double-take and turning around to face him. He slipped off his mask, revealing a mop of messy brown hair and a young face. The kid blinked at the injured sorcerer.
"I️'m Peter, by the way," the teenager informed.
"Doctor Strange," the doctor returned wearily from the floor.
The kid seemed a little surprised. "Oh. We're using our made up names. Then I️ am Spider-Man."
Stephen just tilted his head. Peter turned back around and continued through the ship, and the doctor watched him go before focusing on the only person left in the underbelly of the shuttle.
Loki silently stretched out a hand, then glanced at it. His fingers were covered in oily-looking black blood, or at least, Stephen guessed that's what it was. Loki's eyes seemed somewhat apologetic, and he quickly retracted his limb, wiping most of the blood off on his robe. Stephen gathered that after the robed figure had separated the two, he had fought the mob with his fists.
Loki hesitantly crouched down to Stephen's level, offering to support him so he could move to follow the two superheroes. Stephen nodded, and the Trickster lifted him up. They limped through a random door, and soon the unlikely pair entered the cockpit of the ship to witness what Stephen considered a very strange group of individuals, even for his standards.
"Tony, you have some introductions to conduct," said a girl, breaking off a group conversation. She had long dark hair and a very humanoid form, but her skin was bright green. Tony turned and grinned.
"Hey Reindeer Games, care to introduce yourself?" Tony asked cheekily. Loki's eyes narrowed in anger, and his free hand curled into a fist, but he didn't respond to the teasing.
Stephen interrupted before anything could happen. "I'm Stephen Strange, and this is Loki," he stated.
"Gamora," the green girl returned. "This is Nebula, and this is Mantis." She gestured to the two closest beings, a shy-seeming girl with some sort of antennae and a blue skinned girl with what looked like a metal eye.
"Oh, don't worry. We get weirder," said a man standing next to Gamora, noticing Strange's quirked eyebrow. He looked human to Stephen, but he wasn't about to make assumptions. "Peter Quill, at your service," the guy smirked.
The next alien to introduce himself had grey skin with red markings. "I am Drax the Destroyer," he announced in a low voice.
"Wonderful!" A rude voice proclaimed from the driver's seat of the ship. "Your happy-go-lucky introductions just warmed my poor little heart," He scoffed, but then added, "I'm Rocket." He presses a button on the control panel and swiveled around in the seat. Stephen was expecting some other brightly colored humanoid, so he was surprised to find what appeared to be a raccoon in a blue jumpsuit. "Hey Groot," It continued, and Stephen's brain was forced to admit that he had just met a talking raccoon. "We have guests."
"I am Groot," came a whiny reply from a chair that Stephen had previously assumed to be empty. He craned his neck and glimpsed what seemed to be a teenager playing a video game of sorts. Except that teenager was made of wood. And appeared to be a living tree person. Stephen decided not to comment on that.
"Um, are we not gonna take that thing off?" Peter questioned, waving his hand towards the Trickster's mouth. Tony stepped forward with a fierce look on his face.
"If we take this off, will you betray us?" He demanded. Loki shook his head. "Will you lie to us? Will you be able to use magic?" The god shook his head to both questions. Tony stepped behind the two, and after a second he meticulously melted away the side of the bond. There was a slight hiss, and the muzzle dropped onto the floor. Loki yawned, teeth bared. He rubbed his jaw with his free hand.
"Stark, take Stephen," he suggested, voice raspy from disuse. "We have to get out of here, and when we get it of range of the compound, my magic will return. Thanos' power stone was only commanded to bind that place. His restrictions will dispel, and anyone who is touching me when that happens will get burnt alive when my magic is released." Tony was quick to help Stephen into the closest chair.
A second later, the raccoon, Rocket, gunned the ship, and they sped away from the compound. Doctor Strange finally allowed himself to release his pent up breath. He was free from his puppet master, and he couldn't feel more thankful. Doctor Strange sagged into the back of the seat in relief.
After a few seconds, Loki inhaled sharply, and a blinding flash of light surrounded him. Stephen threw his arms up, but the flash was gone as quickly as it had come. With the return of his magic, the cuts in the god's face closed as the sorcerer watched. Loki then swept over to Stephen and gently took the doctor's ruined hands in his own. He bowed his head, and a faint tickling sensation crept over Stephen's hands. They burned as the spell took hold, but soon the pain faded away, and the cuts from Ebony's knife knitted shut, like some thread was stitching them together. After a moment the god glanced up at Stephen.
"Would you like me to heal them all the way?"
An involuntary tear traced a curve down Stephen's face as he realized what the Trickster was offering. He could heal all of Stephen's old wounds, including the nerve damage, and was volunteering to. Stephen was taken aback by the kindness of a man to whom all the stories degraded. Thanks to him, Stephen could reclaim his lost life, if he so chose.
"Thank you Loki, but no." Stephen declined after a moment's hesitation. "Losing my hands was horrible, but I've accepted it. This is something that I must live with." Without his crash, Stephen would still be a stuck up doctor and wouldn't have become a sorcerer. Wouldn't be where he was, halfway across the galaxy and fighting for Earth with Avengers and aliens. Besides, his scars were a lesson and a reminder of the past.
"Very well," Loki nodded. He squeezed Strange's hands, and a rush of magic shot through him, healing all of his torture wounds in seconds. A wave of recurring agony swept through him, but that, too, faded and he sighed in relief. The Liesmith let go of Stephen's fingers and straightened to his full height. Stephen, now able to walk, stood too.
"Tony, exactly where are we going?" The sorcerer inquired.
Iron Man grinned maniacally before replying, "Straight into the heart of a war. A war against Thanos."
Doctor Strange groaned blatantly. The last thing he needed was to head straight back to the Mad Titan. But if he was being honest, was he really surprised? Just one problem to the next.
Certain death, here we come! He thought.
Thank you so much for reading this story! I hope you enjoyed! Love you all!