WOW. Oh god.

Readers of this fic, I so humbly apologize for leaving it in such a state. I was kidnapped by a mischievous green-eyed god of beautiful-evil and he would not let me go.

He still hasn't technically. I asked him to let me out to play with Thor a bit. ^.^

Sorry this is so short, but I do hope to finish it soon!

I forgot how silly this fic was...I hope you continue to enjoy! :)

Thor had never felt quite so out of place in his entire life.

The diner had been one thing: groups of normal-looking people, scarfing down normal-looking food in what seemed a normal-looking setting.

But this was something else entirely.

Pepper smiled at him from across the small table in the outdoor café.

A large 'umbrella' was situated in the middle of it, cutting sunlight from their eyes.

People in "Pepper"-looking suits sat at various tables around him. All eyed him curiously.

The redhead strongly suggested he try the tea.

Thor had never wanted a drink of alcohol so badly in all his days.

A tiny cup was set in front of him. It too had an umbrella in it.

They were still waiting on the third party to arrive. Thor silently cursed whomever Pepper had asked to meet them there.

He glanced around, smiled weakly at the people who passed them by. He was glad he had not come in full armor. Nevertheless, he felt strange, sitting there in regular human attire with Mjolnir situated on the ground by his foot.

Three children had already run up to him and asked to touch it.

Despite the stress of the previous few days, he'd happily obliged. Nothing brought him a sense of joy quite like the sight of a smiling child.

Except perhaps, the sight of a smiling Jane.

A shadow suddenly cast itself in front of them.

A leather-clad form ducked under the large umbrella and sat down, mumbling into a cell phone.

She snapped it closed and looked at them.

Natasha Romanoff was no-nonsense as usual.

"I just lied to Fury about what I was doing here. Told him I was looking into a rumor that Stark had built an unnecessarily large self-destruct option into one of his suits. I get to go back later and tell him it was false alarm. You owe me for this one, Potts." She waved a waiter over and then looked Thor in the eye.

She smiled.

Thor genuinely believed it was the first time he'd ever seen her do so.

"So…I hear you're having girl trouble?"

Thor looked at the two women smiling his way. Felt a sudden wave of foolishness come over him.

He fought the urge to throw Mjolnir into the air with all his might, catch the handle, and see where it took him.

He remained glued to the intricately-crafted wire chair.

Squeezed his cup of tea so hard he felt it crack slightly in his hand.


He retold the story for what had to be the fifth or sixth time in two days.

Thor sat rigidly, sipping the strange, nearly bland liquid and fiddling awkwardly with the green salad Pepper had ordered for him. He felt something beyond shame seep into his very soul. It was like the Jotunheim incident, multiplied by infinity.

What kind of warrior would eat this?

Easy, Odinson. Do it for Jane.

Pepper and Natasha had listened to his recount and were nodding at him slowly, smiling as if he were a child. It made the situation all the more miserable.

And then:

"I know what you intended to say. What you should have said. It's obvious…." Pepper shook her head at him and laughed a bit.

In any other instance he would have felt his face redden with shame and anger.

But not this day.

This day, the words, the smiles, and the laughs, were like the most beautiful chimes ringing in his ears with glad tidings.

"Thank Odin. Tell me—please!"

Natasha typed away at her phone, glancing at Pepper to show she was listening as well.

"You meant to say that the brown color of the blouse made her eyes lose their spark. Something brighter, like a blue tone, would have made them stand out more; made them shine….right?"

Thor felt his jaw slacken and wondered if the red-headed woman in front of him was a sorceress. Or a psychic. Or both.

He nodded almost dumbly, feeling as if he had finally found the one person in all the universe who understood him. In that moment, Thor wanted to hug Pepper Potts like she was his savior.

Because in many ways, she was.

"That…yes…yes. Precisely! I…how did….?"

He struggled to find his tongue and Natasha snickered a bit at him.

"We're women, Thor. I may not wear a lot of color, but I know how to coordinate them if I wanted to. It's basic stuff. I'm just kind of impressed that you know it…"

Thor smiled a bit and felt his spine straighten in the uncomfortable wire chair. A swell of pride filled his chest.

"I am royalty, Miss Romanoff. Do you think I wear the red cape for nothing?"

He felt relief flood through him as the women laughed and resumed their meal.

Shoveling a piece of lettuce into his mouth, Thor chewed with more vigor and joy than he ever had consumed a vegetable before in his hundreds of years.

He peered out from underneath the large umbrella at the blue sky.

While his female comrades were intelligent and helpful, he felt he could handle things from this point.

He glanced at the women and nodded slightly.

"Ladies. I will be making a trip home this day. Please call Jane and tell her I am in Asgaard for now, and that I will return soon. There is something I need to do…."