A/N: Hello all! So this is a prequel to my Loki/OC story 'Guardian of the Princes' which I recommend you check out if you haven't already!

The main reason I've written this is to distract myself from writing chapter 4 which I'm struggling with at the moment. However, it should be up by the end of the week!

So, in the mean time, I hope you enjoy reading about Loki's first glimpse of Herja!

The Angel of Asgard

Loki had never seen his father so joyous.

It was the first thing he noticed when he entered the dining room with his older brother that evening after their father had called them to a last minute dinner. Since the monthly open meeting he held with the poorer people of Asgard that morning, the All-Father had given strict instructions to all who would listen that he was not to be disturbed; that he was in the middle of important, unexpected business. It seemed he had found something - or rather someone - at that meeting that had made him inexplicably happy.

And he certainly looked happy now, Loki mused as he took his seat on the right of his father and opposite Thor. Odin acknowledged his children with a nod to each of them and turned to rush his other guests into sitting down. Frigga was amongst them, along with the All-Father's closest friends and advisors. Once they were all seated, Loki noticed that everyone was as clueless to the meaning of this late meeting as he was.

"My family, my friends. I have summoned you here with the upmost haste and I heartily apologise for any inconvenience...but I have been immersed in business most joyous all day and I could not find the moment to call you here earlier."

Odin paused rather dramatically and Loki couldn't help but wish he would just get on with it so he could go to his room and practise his magic before bed. He had been planning on tricking Thor into falling into the pond later that week and he wanted to make sure it went without a hitch.

"Call in the young lady!" Odin called to the doorman, sharply breaking Loki from his plotting. Loki glanced at Thor across the table, who was yawning widely and glaring down at his empty plate as though he was trying to conjure food out of thin air. Loki suddenly felt his own stomach growl with hunger. There was the quiet squeak of the wooden door to the dining room and a girl entered slowly, eyeing the small gathering of people with trepidation.

"Come into the light, my dear." Frigga said kindly, encouraging her closer to the table. Eventually, the girl stood next to the table, blushing wildly at everyone's gaze as they began to whisper excitedly.

Loki didn't understand the fuss about her.

She was just a girl, a poor one too, so she couldn't be a chancellor's daughter or anything. He could see that she had no shoes on and there was a layer of dried mud on her feet and her dress was heavily repaired. Though, Loki had to acknowledge with on odd shallowness in his breathing, her messy appearance didn't detract from her face which Loki thought was very pretty indeed. She didn't look as pristine as the other girls he had met; there was something about her that was raw – pure, even – like she had been untouched by the pressures of palace living.

But still. That didn't warrant audible gasps.

Frigga smiled at her and said, "What is your name, dear child?"

"Herja." The girl said quietly.

"And where are you from?"

"I am from Newedd, miss." The girl replied again, her words were rough, unpractised.

"From the slums?" Another of the guests said suddenly, raising her eyebrows and spluttering.

"Yes, miss." Herja said, her face reddening further.

"I think that is quite enough questioning." Odin interrupted. He gestured to the empty seat next to Thor. "Herja, why do you not join us for dinner? You must be hungry; you have had quite a day."

She sat down gratefully, smiling nervously at Thor who grinned at the dual prospect of sitting next to a girl and platters of food arriving at the table. It was obvious that girl was starving – and probably had been most of her life considering her background – but she ate politely, cutting her food up into small pieces and only sipping her wine.

"Herja," Odin began again. "Beside you is my first born, Thor. He is thirteen, just like you, so I am sure you will have plenty to converse about."

Loki felt a slight jolt of irritation at not being considered but it dissolved as he looked properly at the pretty girl across from him, only to choke on his potatoes a second later when she met his eyes suddenly and smiled sweetly. Thankfully, Thor was intent on keeping her attention on him and began regaling her with a tale of an accident he had when combat training last week. Loki felt himself grin when he saw Herja looked bored by the story. But now she was opposite him and preoccupied talking to Thor, Loki had the chance to study her properly.

The first thing he noticed was a long braid of golden hair, then smooth skin; and it was only after he had looked into her eyes, heard her voice and replayed her words three times in his head did he see those brilliant white wings folded behind her.

And then he understood the fuss.

I hope you all enjoyed that little one shot!

Please leave a review...I love them so much!