What you want to hear.
He didn't approach as quietly as he could have, she probably just picked up on the unsettling dust. Either way; he didn't draw off when the blonde head flickered up. He'd just wanted to humour morbid curiosity, so it was fine by him when she turned her glance away, and he seemed free to leave the little
Thordotter* to it.
"I lost my sword."
Halted step; damn.
"Yes, so I'd gathered," he droned though a sidelong glance "Quite a mess, really," but who was Loki to disapprove.
Torunn's brow furrowed as she crossed him with a distinctly morose glare "Well if you were there-"
"I wasn't," it wasn't really supposed to come out as sharp as it sounded but Torunn snorted at him all the same,
"Sure," he watched her slump further over; beginning to eye the sky with lowered brows "Just me."
"Not true," the girl didn't seem to regard the green-eyed one as he began to saunter over "If it was just you, you'd have ended up with pieces all over the street."
There was no movement as knelt, practically sinking as dust swirled and tangled in her now bronzing tresses; she'd likely have been buried by morning. Loki made no move to unearth his young niece.
As the night-long chill began to pick up, it looked as if Torunn was making a severe effort to swallow something back before blue eyes allayed up towards him, his emerald orbs splintered back into her; even in her condition she wasn't wavered off so he held his intrigue.
Half a croak later "You're Asgardian."
"In a sense,"
"Did-" Torrunn swiped at her front locks; drapes of debris clearing from within them as she reared up ever so slightly "Did my father-?"
"But you didn't let me-"
"I've had little to do with Thor in these past few years." his arms folded smoothly as her nose began to crease,
"So what's your buisness here?"
"Just a casual visit," oh what the Hel, he shrugged "I came to see my niece."
She merely fixed him with a glassy stare "Nice to meet you." a huff
"Charmed, " a thoughtful narrowing of the eyes "Truly."
"Well, if you do happen to run into my father," she took a deep heave before slumping once more "Tell him Torunn's not going to bother him any more." A shrug "He'll get it."
"Are you quite sure?" his slender form began to circle her's, slowly, methodically "The king of Asgard, Mighty Thor: with the demands of a realm that size resting on the weight of Mijolnir," She caught his attention mid-stride "What makes you think he even thought to drop everything just to watch you?" If her face could have fell any harder the girl would have surely been crushed
"I'm his daughter."
"He'd be watching, not raising: there's no obligation really," he halted before her; taking the opportunity to truly admire the splendour of a hazardous wasteland. Classy.
"So..." her lips seemed to tighten with the slightest of warbles, the tension once again knotting at the back of her throat "All those...times, prayers...?" he swore if she kept that up then she'd be choking "He never heard?" she dared not raise her head again, for if she did, she'd have been forced to confront a snide smirk upon his pale face. Loki raised a reprimanding finger,
"Now I didn't say that." a slight chuckle, he couldn't really help it; it just amused him how her brow set into a thoughtful grimace not completely unlike her father's. Torunn's airways did seem to clear, however shakilly, upon whatever conclusion she may have drawn,
"So he might have yet?"
"It's Thor; he doesn't abandon too easilly."
Now it was her turn to balk, scuffling on her knees over to the opposite direction "How do you figure?"
Loki's chin tilted with a quiet blink of consideration; he continued to eye the huddling girl as she continued to face the debris of the elements
"He liked Midgard," he offered with open palm "Thus, he left you with a magic sword for its' keep."
"Exactly. Now it's stuck right in there."
Oh touché. It was that moment that Loki decided to linger, just a little longer, over this one. Despite whatever promise she held that caused him to grin, he had to fight not to lose it at yet another sigh.
"Well if he didn't, maybe I'm glad. I mean..."
"Kicked you out all the same."
"Yeah." that shrug was far too tender for her.
"And for what, let's face it, we all know of Thor," he supressed a tense snigger "There was probably very little in terms of 'mysterious ways.'"
He noted that she began to finger quite a few deep, but atleast dry, scratches over her right forearm, seeming to squirm a little on her heels "Well," she tensed "I know it's not my place...for a child to question a father I mean,"
'Oh yes it is.' but he bit that one back down diligently
"But until yesterday, my brothers and I? We didn't even think this threat, this fight, was even real," she paused, her chin stiffening upwards as he hands clamped firmly in her lap "In the meantime; what was he thinking?"
"The classic response may be to point out something about best interests." Even if he was casting a critical glance around the wasteland, he still caught sight of how her own brow rose skeptically
"Like maybe I'm hardy?" her arms folded tightly across her chest, and Loki could tell that she meant whatever curse or call that was directed towards the sky "Or was it just supposed to be a convenient thought?"
"Look," Loki swept down to sit beside her; leering as she met the baiting glint of his eye "Twelve years go a mortal woman marched up to Thor and tried to beat her fists into his chest," a smirk "She didn't; but she tried to; today she still stands by him because she's as stubborn as you." he leaned further towards her "Stupidly; she trusts why he did what he did because, Odin only knows why, she thinks she knows he's right."
Torunn shook her head slowly "That makes no sense," her brow furrowed "Why would she think she could assault him?"
"Well he did take their baby girl." it wasn't surprising when Torunn's face began to cloud over, he remembered that look, another time, another place, but she seemed to handle the airiness as well as could be expected
"Mother." another distant wind crossed as her heart threatened to bubble up through a once loud mouth.
"Jane Foster. Nice lady." he flicked a pebble off into the clearing "A little rash, set in her theories, has a tendancy to stare at the sky," a shrug "But she see's enough logic, I suppose."
"That's why I'm here." the pre-teen was gaping like a goldfish starved of air "I mean, that's why he ditched me!" as fists pounded up more dust, Loki felt himself tapping fingers thoughtfully against his knee with a tilt of the head.
"Well; half a mortal runt," leaning back on an arm, a brow raised "Dime a dozen back in the day." a click of his silver tongue "Them and Jotuns."
"All this time I dared-" she broke herself off, hunching further over down into the dust, convulsing with an illegiable rush of emotion, probably somewhere between resentment and betrayal; before storming back up to her knees "I was just too breakable for Asgard!"
"Loud, shrieky," a familiar hand went to his forehead for a familiar headache; ah nostalgia.
"A sully upon his Asgardian name!"
"So that's why he keeps your mother in the castle!" a mock huff of indignity as he slapped a hand to his gaping maw "And here I was scorned for daring suggest she sleep on a bed of hay in the doghouse." a shake of the head "Some people."
That got her; she visably stumbled over her own rantings, perplexion crossing over her features before they appeared to darken in consideration.
"So I am meant to be-" she paused as she watched the man shrug, gesture dismissively, at this point she could tell he was just here for the show "You could take me there, I could clear this with father personally if you're bored."
"I could; but you'd have to stay with me." he matched her look for look "And I have a terrible callousness when it comes to attatchments."
"You'd have to if you don't want the wrath of thunder over your head." he began to inspect his nails "And that's just at Heimdall's post, don't even think you could get close to Asgard's gates."
"You make no sense, uncle!" Yellow boots stomped to stand, a threatening foot thrudding into his threshold "He wants me but he'll not have me at the gates; he cares so little for mortals but he'll court one for as long as he has," her fist thumped against her breast plate "He gives me a sword, a promise of protection," another painful swallow "But when I call, scream, beg for help-!"
"Now, now: I didn't say that." He stood over her once more "Any of that infact."
She tensed as he placed bony digits atop her shoulders, head sinking once more in abject frustration "Then what are you saying?"
"What you want to hear." his face was as blank as the slate he'd been working from; gaunt, coarse, grey "I'm a silvertongued wretch, I could help you convince yourself the world was triangle if I had the time."
The olive-skinned blonde was practically boring into the sand with that glare as her shoulders heaved stiffly beneath his grasp "Why be so kind, care that much?"
"No. Well," a flippant gesture to the vastness as their parched oasis sputtered on before them "Not for all this splendour everyone wants to be indulged and you've had your fill: I'm just here to fast track that."
"Simple: even if you lose it's important to know why."
"I know why I lost." a dry heave threatened to claw it's way through her suddenly very small frame "Why can I not just leave it at that?"
"Think of it this way," Loki tapped her cheek with yet another reprimanding finger "How can Thor care if you don't?" Torrun looked the trickster in the eye with far much more trust than need be "Daddy loves you; daddy left you high and dry."
She flinched off; eyes clenching shut as her teeth grit, practically about to burst,
"Call him." his grin flicked up tensely "I dare you."
Torunn would have struck him right in his horrid mouth had he not vanished.
Torunn spun on her heel; golden tresses beckoning triumphantly as she heaved the sword from where she knew her father had thrown it for her.
"I knew it!" tears streamed down her soft cheeks but she laughed loudly, brandishing her weapon with a warm, loving grip "He saw!" but she knew she'd not brood over those consequences, those insinuations that once plagued her; because as she strode over to the so-called silver-tongued wretch; all she could think with, just brim and spill over a thousand times more with was one simple fact; "Father watches over me!"
"Naturally." Loki's wry smirk seemed distant, detatched "Your's is just nicer about it." he knew she wouldn't care to pry him for such details right now.
Torunn stood before him, gazing curiously about his person as she came to stand beside where he sat upon a rock. He was stiff, focussed only upon the crater from where her sword had landed.
"Uncle," He turned, her blue eyes blazing against his "I know what you want to hear."
The daughter of Thor suddenly leaned down to wrap two strong, dangerously genuine arms around his neck, squeezing tight and clear.
He didn't need to hear it.