Chapter I: Don't. Get. Over. Confident
A/N: This my jump into the Thor fandom. I would love to thank MsMarvel21 for all of the help she's provided. Open to concrit. Enjoy the first chapter! Sparky She-Demon
Sif was used to being underestimated. When she first started her training to become a warrior, she not only suffered ridicule, but most men treated this as a passing obsession for her. Until Thor introduced her to the Warriors 3, she didn't really get opponents that would actually teach her properly.
Unfortunately, with the introduction to the Warriors 3, came the introduction of Prince Loki. For the most part he ignored her. Other times, when the mood struck him, he could be particularly snide and callous. Sif preferred his silence.
"Keep moving your feet, Sif. Standing still in battle will only make you an easy target." Volstaag growled in her direction, before continuing, "You wouldn't want to attract unwarranted attention."
"I do believe you are right, Volstaag," Loki said. "You would never want to attract unwarranted attention." In a moment of her venerability, he swung the mock weapon in her direction, knocking her to the ground. "It's dangerous." He added with a crooked smirk on his face.
The day came and went and nightfall was creeping into Asgard. Lady Sif walked along the now crowded street towards the most popular tavern. It was Thor's favorite, so the Warriors 3 and herself ended up there one way or another.
There had been a small rainstorm earlier, making the dirt between the cobblestones in the road turn to mud. It seeped through Sif's sandals as she wove her way around a few very tall men. A dark cloak hid her identity as she entered the small hole in the wall bar. She easily slipped past the guards at the door, who were probably there because of Thor.
As she entered in, the smell of mead and men filled her nose. It was a scent she had become accustomed to. Thor was not hard to spot. He was sitting up at the bar, a large frosty glass in one hand and his infamous hammer next to him on the counter. He was talking to a few men and the moment, probably about battles or war. Only the Norns knew.
Fandral, on the other hand, was seated at a table not too far from Thor. The seats were all filled with swooning women, which did not come as a surprise to Sif. For some reason, women were always attracted to him. Some say he possessed magic, but Sif knew better. Any real talent he had was with a sword, she would give him that.
Volstaag and Hogun were not in her sight as she approached Thor. Fandral gave her a nod as she passed by. She returned it as subtly as she could. Thor peered up from his glass to meet Sif's eyes. "Well, it is about time!" He boomed, causing some of the glasses on the counter to shake. "What took you so long, Lady Sif?"
Sif groaned and removed her hood. "I do not think you understand the concept of a disguise." She said, taking a seat next to him. "Disguise?" Thor asked. Clearly he already had a few more drinks than the one in his hand. "Why would you need that?" Sif rolled her eyes and removed her cloak. "Last time we were here, I got into a fight, which is still your fault, and I was told not to return to this place."
The memory was coming back to Thor and he let out a laugh. "Oh, how could I have forgotten? You broke a glass mug over that guy's head!" Sif couldn't help but smile. "He said that women cannot fight." Thor let out another laugh and patted Sif on the back, nearly sending her off the bar stool. "He got what he deserved."
"You forget your own strength, oaf." A quiet voice said. Sif turned her head and her jaw dropped. Before her stood Loki. Never before had she seen him join in this "barbaric merriment" as he called it. "You almost sent the lady across the room." Thor looked puzzled, but then grinned. "Loki! What are you doing here?"
That really was the question though. Loki was always up to something, and trouble followed everywhere he trotted. "You invited me, do you not remember?" Loki asked.
Sif could feel the spite in his voice as if it were a tangible presence. "Loki, he is drunk." Sif informed. Loki's eyes moved from Thor to Sif, causing her to shiver and look away. They were unnaturally green, and always made her feel uncomfortable.
"When is he not drunk?" Loki mused, finally looking away from Sif. "Oh, come on brother!" Thor shouted. "Live a little!" Loki looked annoyed as his brother's boisterous behavior. "What are you doing in a place like this, my lady?" Loki asked, taking a seat near Sif and Thor. "I should be asking you that myself." She replied.
Loki's eyes pierced hers again but this time she didn't look away. "This is not the most ideal place for you, now is it?" He said. What the devil was that supposed to mean, Sif thought. "Neither is the battlefield, yet alas, there I am." She retorted. "But where are you, Loki? When we practice, you are hardly ever present. Isn't that where a real man belongs, on the battlefield?"
Loki was a sorcerer, spending his days learning magic. Men on Asgard picked a trade or they fought, and that was basically it. Magic was looked down upon here, probably because it was feared and mysterious. Loki was not good with a weapon, other than a dagger, making him look like less of a man. Which he hated. "At least when I fight, Sif, I am not distracted." Loki's eyes fluttered to the unobservant Thor, and then back to her.
Anger welded up inside of Sif. "How dare you suggest that?" Sif hissed at him. Loki only smiled. "I may not be the best fighter, but I am intelligent." He said with a smirk, before continuing with,
"Compared to me, you are no more intelligent than a gnat."
Not rising to the bait in a manner that would please him, Sif decided to try a new tactic instead of arguing with Loki.
"You like a good game of riddles, do you not Loki?"
"I am known to partake in them from time to time," the insolent lie-smith smirked before asking, "What are the stakes?"
Thinking carefully for a moment before replying, Sif said, "If you win, I will not insult your preference for magic over weaponry…" She trailed off, unsure of what to do next.
"In the unlikely event of you winning this game Lady Sif, what would you have me do?" The grin he had made her want to smack it right off his face.
Remembering something that had been brought up in the past, Sif smirked saying, "You will have to take on an apprentice to train if you get one of the three riddles I come up with wrong."
Loki's eyes narrowed. That was not something he wanted to do, though his mother had been suggesting the idea with greater frequency. But if he won, there would be nothing to worry about.
"I could do this with my eyes shut and without even trying. Give it your best, Lady Sif."
It was a good thing that Sif had three riddles in mind, one she was pretty sure he'd get wrong.
"Here goes nothing," Sif thought before asking, "I only point in one direction but I guide people around the world. What am I?" Before she could even take a breath, Loki replied in a bored tone,
"It's a compass. Give me the second one."
"Some try to hide, some try to cheat, but time will show, we will always meet. Try as you might, to guess my name, I promise you'll know, when you I do claim. Who am I?"
This time she managed to get a breath in, before Loki responded, "Death." Before Sif could start the third one, he sneered, "These riddles are child's play. You're only digging yourself into a deeper hole. Give me a decent riddle."
Having sat on this riddle for last, Sif smirked before asking, "Oh clever Lie-Smith, answer this riddle: What is at the heart of everything?"
For the first time in long time, Loki was stumped. What the devil was the answer?
Thor had been watching the game of riddles with great interest, especially now that his brother appeared to be stumped. He hadn't seen this happen two centuries at least.
Sif had a most wicked grin on her face when she saw that Loki didn't know the answer.
Loki glared at her, he knew that he'd lost. But he wasn't going to beg. "I have better things to do than this," he growled before shoving past the guards.
As Sif sat down, Thor gave her a grin and said, "Good work Sif. It's been a very long time since someone has bested my brother at a game of riddles."
Sif returned the grin before replying, "Well before I possibly get thrown out of this establishment, I did come down here for a reason. We're going to Vanaheim for the Yule celebrations." She'd been noticed by a few of the idiots from the previous incident, and they were making their way over, again.
Fandral had come back saying, "If I recall correctly, the Vanir have a strong talent for magic. More so than in any of the other realms. Perhaps Loki will find his apprentice while we are there."
The idiots were back and raring for a fight. Sif went to draw her sword. When it didn't come out, she tried yanking with both hands. It still wouldn't budge.
As she drew a dagger from her boot, Sif thought,
"Damn you Loki!"
Hanna was just finishing up a book from her father's library. She must've read every book he had on magic several times over to try and learn anything about controlling her magic abilities.
Hanna was a pyrokinetic. Thankfully, she was a member of a family line that was strong in the art of magic. Her younger brother was a telepath, her father could use telekinesis. Her two oldest sisters, Ingrid and Ebba, had magical talents lay with precognition and healing. Astrid, the sister that was immediately older than her had very limited magical talent. It was one of the many reasons they did not get along very well.
Her magic was also not under the best of control. There were times where Hanna could be both a danger to herself and/or others. And they were becoming more and more frequent. Being "gifted" with elemental magic was rare, even in a family like hers. More often than not, elemental magic was seen as more of a curse, as it was particularly difficult to control.
As she placed the book back on the shelf, Hanna heard a slight cough. Turning around, she saw one of her father's guards, Alarik.
Nodding at him to continue, Alarik said, "My lady, I've come to escort you to your father's study. There are things he needs to discuss with you, your brother, and sister. I've come to bring you.
As they were walking towards her father Sven's study, Hanna asked, "Alarik, do you have any idea why my father is asking for all three of us?"
"I do not my lady. But it may have something to do with the letter he got from your uncle, the king."
That got her attention quickly. Her father rarely got letters from his older brother, King Haakon. While they had a reasonable relationship, it was common knowledge that their father had nearly changed the order of succession so that Sven, her father, would be heir to the throne. Her father had managed to talk his father out of it, saying that it would be better if he was advising Haakon, rather than Haakon advising him.
Once they got to her father's study, Hanna noticed that her brother and sister were already there, and sitting on opposite sides of the room. Their father was not there yet. Rolling her eyes, Hanna went and sat by her brother. That was another thing that she and her sister disagreed on. Their mother had died in childbirth with Ragnar. So, Astrid still blamed Ragnar for that, as wrong as she knew it was.
Sven sighed when he saw how his children were seated in his study. Despite the centuries, some things just never changed. And they more than likely wouldn't.
Getting down to business, Sven walked into the room saying, "Now that you're all here, I suppose that I should tell you why I called you all. I received a letter from your uncle."
All three of them nodded. The guards that had brought them there had shared that detail. And despite their best efforts, the guards wouldn't share any further details.
Sven continued with, "We will be going to his home for the Yule celebrations this year. What makes this year different from the previous times is that we will be hosting a group from Asgard for the duration of the festivities."
Sven watched his children's reactions. Astrid was obviously pleased, since it would give her a chance to show off more than usual. And to a larger audience. She left quickly to plan what how she would go and do just that.
Ragnar was excited for an entirely different reason. While the armory at home was well stocked, he always liked learning about different weapons and how they worked among other things. At his uncle's place, there would be a plethora of weapons Ragnar had only heard about, but never seen. There would also be books on telepathy, that Ragnar would pore over. He too left the study with some excitement in his step.
Hanna had always been the hardest of his children to read. But Sven could tell that Hanna was every bit as excited as her brother and sister. She had always loved when they'd travelled, even if it was just to her uncle's place. Hanna also loved the stories he'd told them about his adventures from when he was younger.
But there was one more reason that he was grateful that Hanna was the last to leave. As she got up to make her way back to her rooms, he asked,
"How is your control at the moment Hanna?"
Hanna wasn't too surprised that her father had asked her that question. It was something he asked her on a recurring basis. Her issues with control were common knowledge among the family, it wasn't something that needed to be advertised to others. When in a bad mood, Hanna could become a safety hazard to both herself and others.
After thinking for a moment, Hanna replied softly, "It's as good as ever, maybe a little bit better. As long as I keep my temper in check, there shouldn't be any issues."
"And if there are any issues?" Sven asked.
"If there are, I will find a way to leave the area as soon as possible." With that, Hanna gave her father a slight nod with her head and left.
Sven hoped to whoever was listening, that Hanna did not have any flareups with her abilities. For both her sake and others.
A/N 2: What do you guys think?
OC face claims:
Hanna: Katie McGrath as she looked in Merlin
Ragnar: Richard Madden
Sven: Gabriel Byrne
Astrid: Hayden Pannetiere