Written for Tzadikim, because I apparently have latent masochistic tendencies. Done with the European quote style because reasons (cough my being too lazy to do html quote-codes for the English ones cough).

prompts: laundry day, see you there; with my freeze ray i will _; „i love your hair."/„what?"/„oh, er. i love the... air."; that's the plan. you and me rule the world.

#insert 'stddisclaimer.h'


now little Caroline is in here, too

by Incendiarist


I'd tell you to go to Hell, but I don't want to spend my eternity with you.


1.

„I," she says, „I..."

She hasn't the (courage to say the) words, so she fumbles awkwardly, trying to finish the sentence. „I'll see you next week?" a hopeful sort of thing, even if the reply comes the same every time.

„See you then!" says the other, pulling the oversized bag over a shoulder.

Her smile collapses as the door chimes and denim-clad legs fade from view.

Dammit.

2.

She has dreams of world domination, but she can't even ask someone out.

„Pathetic."

Her head slams against the plastic table—the folding sort with the aluminium legs—once, twice, thrice...

„Pathetic, pathetic, pathetic!"

She can't do-

„-any fucking thing right! Can't shoot, can't heal, can't even fucking recite shitty poetry godsbedamned-!"

Another slam against the table as coherency throws up its hands.

3.

„I," she says, „love your hair," and she's cheering inside, because she's finally worked up the courage to say something, and she keeps her mind on that—maybe the joy will mute the terror.

„What?" asks the other, looking up from the softcover novel, the spine folded back on itself so many times that the title can only barely be made out.

„Oh, er," she says, „I love the... air," and inside, she's cursing herself.

„That's nice," says the other, pulling absently at the frayed tape which holds down the sticker, Mystery. A beep comes from a finished cycle, and the other stands.

A minute later comes a „See you next week!" and she lets her head fall into her hands.

4.

„Look," says the other awkwardly, and her heart clenches, thinking the words coming are «I'm not going to be coming back», or something else that would break her heart, but instead it's „I've got this thing coming up for work, and I was thinking about who I should take, and... Wow, this is awkward, er, I thought of you. Would you maybe...?" and the question tapers off.

She's grinning like a loon, and she doesn't care, not a single bit.

5.

She feels so out of place here, among the rich and famous; she doesn't even have a washing machine, and her flat is about the size of a shoebox, while half of these people spend more money than she makes in a month on a bottle of wine. That'd be funny, if it weren't so sad.

She has no idea how she's supposed to mingle. The other does, though, in elegant clothes and a charming smile, and somehow an accountant—because even Stark Industries needs them, and working for Stark has benefits; great dental, ridiculously high-tech crap that's probably more powerful than a supercomputer and powered off an arc reactor, and invitations to soirées that would make kings green with envy—can talk to billionaires and super-soldiers and fucking Norse gods, and does it looking completely natural.

She's kind of jealous.

6.

She finds herself talking to one of her brothers, and even if he's a superhero, he's still her brother, and thus completely approachable.

She's jealous of him, too.

7.

Laundry day, and it's business as usual, except it isn't, because she and the other aren't quite friends anymore. They're something else entirely, because they got drunk at a fancy party, and then they were at the other's flat, groping and gasping out semi-coherent sentences as their lips broke apart long enough for them to breathe.

It's anything but business as usual, because she admitted to being a failure of a daughter, the self-hatred in the confession somewhat overshadowed by „Holy shit, you're a demigod?" and then „Holy shit, Clint Barton is your brother?" and by the time the whole thing is sorted out, the initial shock faded a bit, they're still on the topic, but the perspective has changed, and perspective is everything. They're so far beyond pissed when they start discussing the merits of supervillainy, it's amazing either of them remember it, but life isn't so kind as that, because the whole duologue runs in her head, where she said she empathised with Loki Laufeyjarson (or was it Odinson, still, or, for that matter, Laufeyjar/Odindottir?), of all people, and the other showed a surprising amount of bitterness when it came to anything regarding heroes at all, and she found herself looking back at earlier that night, with the display she retroactively saw was an act, and decided that the other was quite the talented grifter, and somehow telling the other that led to plotting.

The words ring in her head now, and, she's sure, in the other's, too: „That's the plan. You and me rule the world."

It's only business as usual if daydreams count.

8.

And now she'd love to say she doesn't know how she got here, only she's never been a good liar (a good anything), and it's clear as the emotions on her half-brother's face.

Because she's betrayed the gods, hasn't she? The Olympians, at least, because something tells her that Loki couldn't care less.

And the Olympians are the only ones she's supposed to respect, anyway, so that doesn't matter.

„Why?"

She doesn't dignify it with an answer.

o capăt.