None of them were quite sure how they came to be in the small room.
It was, indeed, small. There was one large window, with extremely thick glass panes. Two chairs and a desk were pushed up against the wall. Other than that, the room was empty.
In this simple room, there was a sudden explosion of bright light-not quite silver, but not quite gold either.
And then nine of the most powerful gods from mythology appeared.
All of them looked around in confusion. It took a few moments for them to notice one another.
Loki was the first to break the silence. He began to laugh, although nothing particularly funny had happened.
"Is this one of your schemes, Loki?" growled Odin, scowling.
Loki broke off laughing abruptly. "No, dear brother, it is not. I just find it funny. It's a sly trick, putting you, me, Thor, and-" He peered at the others, then shrugged. "-and them in the same room..." He started to laugh again.
Thor hefted his silver hammer onto his shoulder. "This is definitely not funny."
"Right, well, I would think introductions are in order, so that we can discuss this more clearly," Poseidon suggested.
There was an uncomfortable silence for a long minute, before Poseidon spoke up again. "I'm Poseidon." Uncontained amusement shone in his sea-blue eyes.
"I'm Anubis." The Egyptian god was in his favorite form; a man in his early-twenties with longish black hair and goatee.
"Odin is one of my more common names." Odin swept his hair out of his face.
"Loki the Trickster at your service." Loki gave the other gods a charismatic grin, eyes flashing from underneath shaggy blond hair.
"You can call me Ra," the Egyptian god said sullenly. There was a permanent frown on his face.
"I'm Zeus." The Greek god eyed everyone defiantly, stating with his entire being that he was the boss, and if anyone tried to prove otherwise they would get a faceful of lightning.
"And I'm Horus." Horus adjusted the eye patch he wore over one eye.
"Thor, the Thunderer." Thor lowered his hammer and rested it on the ground, leaning on the handle.
Hades was the last to speak. "You can call me Hades. Call me anything else and...well, let's just say you'll regret it."
Silence fell over the room again before Anubis broke it.
"I don't care how we got here or why. All I want is to get out." He crossed his arms, fixing everyone in the room with a steely glare.
"I'm sure that all of this is the ridiculous joke of some stupid author. They probably think this is hilarious," grumbled Hades.
"Yes, authors do tend to enjoy torturing us," remarked Odin, pulling one of the chairs away from the wall and sitting down. "We'll just have to stay calm until this one decides they're bored with us and put us back where we belong."
"I'm not going to spend hours in this room waiting for some lunatic to put me back in Asgard," complained Thor. He stalked over to the window.
"That's probably not-" Loki started.
Thor brought his hammer down on the glass. Instead of shattering, the hammer bounced back and careened across the room, eventually slamming to a stop on the opposite side of the room.
"-a good idea," Loki finished, smirking.
Thor growled a curse under his breath and went to retrieve his hammer.
"That thing is just a toy," Zeus said, waving a hand dismissively. "I'm sure one of my lightning bolts could break the window easily."
"All right, Mr. Know-It-All," Thor snapped. "Go ahead and try. Let's see if your lightning is stronger than my hammer."
Zeus complied. He raised his right hand, and a bolt of lightning streaked out of his hand and struck the window.
Instead of breaking the window, the lightning shot away and ricocheted from wall to wall. All of the gods ducked to avoid being hit; it wouldn't kill any of them, but it would still hurt.
"Splendid job," Thor taunted Zeus.
Zeus let out a frustrated growl and got ready to launch a bolt of lightning at Thor.
"All right, break it up. We don't need a thunder-and-lightning storm right now," Horus interrupted.
Zeus and Thor sullenly left for opposite sides of the room to sulk and throw glares at each other.
"I agree. We need to concentrate on figuring out how to get out of here, if that's even possible," Odin said from his chair.
"Well, what do you propose we do, then?" Poseidon, who was standing next to Odin, asked.
"I'm not sure yet, but those two battling each other is the last thing we need," Odin replied.
"That's true." Poseidon cast a glance at Zeus. "My brother has anger-management issues," he added in a low whisper.
"So does my son," Odin said in the same quiet tones.
At this point, Loki wandered over to the window and tapped on the glass with one finger.
"Does the almighty Trickster have any ideas?" Hades asked, his voice dripping with sarcasm.
"If I did, I wouldn't be telling the likes of you," replied Loki.
"The likes of me?" Hades roared. "I am a thousand-no, a million-times better than you, by all accounts!"
Loki honored Hades with a smirk. "Haters gonna hate."
"You are a mindless fool!" shouted Hades.
"Okay, then, if you're so powerful and smart, what do you think we should do to this window? Scream at it?" Loki inquired. "Your voice is certainly high-pitched enough to do the job."
Hades began bellowing curses in Ancient Greek. Loki, unfazed, simply watched, a grin on his face.
Poseidon sighed. "It seems that both of my brothers have anger-management issues," he told Odin.
"No, I wouldn't think so," Odin said, watching Loki and Hades. "Loki tends to make everyone angry. Besides, if you don't mind my saying so, Hades appears to be more...insane."
"I won't argue with that," Poseidon said, shrugging.
"We seem to be the only sane ones here," Anubis remarked to his fellow Egyptian gods. Ra and Horus nodded their agreement.