A/N: I am soooo sorry for the wait. Once again, school kicked my ass. I literally felt like I last updated like, a month ago, and then when I checked, yeah, six months is not two months. Also, the chapter I leave you with here is short as Hell, but it's more of an "I'm still alive"/Intro to the next chapter, so hopefully you can forgive me. Then again, when I had a giant wait I delivered a nice one, so that should be a vote of faith on my part for you people. Enjoy!
Jarvis glanced away from the row of spices that he had been looking over when he heard Logan mumble something from behind him and Loki had a similar sounding response.
Tony had invited them all for Christmas dinner, and as most of them had expected, it had gone terribly, terribly wrong. The man had introduced one of his latest projects: a suit of armor that would help him with various building projects and repairs on the projects. He had fired up the lasers in its hands and within seconds half the kitchen and dining room were two feet shorter.
But Tony, of course, refused to cancel the party and merely relocated it to one of the penthouse-turned-dance hall in one of his buildings, so the show was still on.
"You two aren't just going to stand there the entire time, are you? I need some semblance of help," he pointed out.
"We're helping, don't worry. We just… don't… particularly want to. And are questioning why we made the guest list," Loki admitted.
Logan arched an eyebrow and nodded.
"At least your entire family and your brothers friends weren't invited."
"At least Clint's decent… and your mom," Logan offered.
Loki shrugged in agreement. "You sure you don't need any help with the cooking part of this?"
"No. My sister and brother-in-law are coming to enjoy and help with the cooking, and once we're together we're like machines," Jarvis replied. "But, you're far welcome to volunteer with one of these," he added, reaching behind him into the cart to hand them =.
Logan took it. "Horse-drawn carriage… Stark Tech demonstration –clay pigeons, film, blah blah blah… tree re-lighting… dog adoption? Holy shit, he goes all out."
"'Spare no expense to be the best'," Jarvis recited.
"You tell us where to go, we'll help out," Logan replied, patting him on the back. "I'd bet the girls are gonna be all over the dog thing."
Loki looked over at Thor as the man paced across the living room for the twentieth time that day. "You're going to ruin the vacuuming job I did an hour ago, you know," he announced, setting his book down.
"Then redo it later. It will only take minutes."
Loki stopped reading and sighed dramatically. He wasn't going to give him the satisfaction. He wasn't going to give- damn it. "Fine then, what has you in such a tizzy?"
"I… think I'm going to propose to Jane on Christmas. I've been thinking about it for a while after Clint and Bobbi had their moment, and… I think it needs to be done."
Loki almost dropped his book this time. Him? Propose? Be mature? No. "I… what brought this about?"
"I was just thinking… it's… I've never met someone like her before."
Loki squinted and looked to the side, remembering several times he had heard that- two of them being exactly like Jane. He opened his mouth.
Thor caught the look and put his hand up. "This time I'm serious. I… she's… always been different than the rest, and… I love her, and I think we can better together, so that's the next step."
"And are you sure our wonderful father will approve of this?"
"Unlike you I really don't care what he thinks. Jane's in our lives- in mine, not his, and that's that," Thor replied.
Loki flinched initially as if stung at the first words. But as Thor continued, he realized he had a point. "Well then, if you were looking for your younger brother's blessing, you have it."
Thor grinned and grabbed Loki by the biceps. "Thank you. It means something. It really does. Now, I've asked Erik, I've run it by you… she claims her family isn't… exactly in the picture… should I run it by Darcy was well?"
"If you want to lose hearing from her screaming about it, sure," Loki replied.
Thor let out a bark of laughter, then sat back down. "I mean, she is her sister for all intents and purposes, is she not?"
"Good. Then do me a favor and come with me."
"Oh, I suppose it couldn't hurt. I just hope she's a little more welcoming than you."
Sure enough, within a couple of hours, Thor had broken the news to Darcy, with Loki at his side.
The young woman, as expected, let out an inhuman screech and gripped Loki's arm in a vicegrip before pointing at Thor repeatedly. "They're gonna get maaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrriiiieeeeddd!"
"Possibly. She still has to say 'yes' first," Thor broke into a smile.
"Oh, she's totally saying yes," Darcy replied, then paused. "Hold on. Didn't you two like, hate each other a couple of weeks ago?"
Thor coughed, then shrugged. "Well, couples fight. It's what they do,"
"Fair enough. Can I help plan everything?" Darcy asked.
"Of course," Thor nodded.
"Awesome. Now we just have to figure out how to make your wedding all sciency without being tacky… seriously dude, you're all set," she nodded.
"Oh? And how's that?"
"Well, now you have a planner, I can imagine all of the wedding party already, Tony can hook you guys up with venues for the reception, and the best man and maid of honor are just short of screwing anyway, so we all win!"
Loki went red and coughed again, figuring out just who she meant from that last bit. Then again, she made no attempt at hiding it, did she? But then the rest of it sunk in and he looked curiously at Thor, who looked just as momentarily uncomfortable as he did.
However, his older brother recovered quickly. "Come on. You really think I'm not going to have my little brother be my best man."
Loki blinked, then smiled weakly before it turned into a frown, then back. "Well, I assumed Clint, or 'Stag, or Andy…" He felt worse as he saw Thor look progressively more and more hurt as he rambled on. "Ahem… can we… delay this talk until after the woman's said 'yes'? I doubt she'd appreciate all of this being planned ahead of time and she feels forced into it because of all of our efforts."
Thor paused, then offered another unsure grin. Loki knew it was at his own mood change rather than his request. "I guess that would be best, wouldn't it?"
"Duh," Darcy nodded.
Thor laughed, then looked at her. "Look, I came to ask your blessing. I need your word that you won't go and blab all of this to Jane."
Darcy raised her hand, then pressed her pinky to her thumb so her pointer, middle and ring finger were up. "Scout's honor. Not a word. You fail to know that I've been in this spot before and even if the suspense kills me, my lips are sealed, Handsome."
Thor beamed, then pulled her forward and kissed her forehead.
"So, like, if this goes down, you guys are totally naming your first daughter after me, right? I mean, Darla's kind of cool anyway, but-"
"Darcy!" the two others groaned.
"… It was worth a shot. So, let me see what the rock looks like!"