Warnings: manxman? There's not much in this chapter.

Disclaimer: I don't own Thor, but Norse myth is free for poetic licence last time I checked ;P

A/N: This is my first fanfiction of Thorki, and my first fanfiction in a long time. I apologize for any grammatical errors or spelling mistakes I have made. If you see any, please let me know! I also apologize for the shortness of this chapter, and I also apologize if something sounds weird when you read it. I'm trying out a different style of writing, so of course this isn't my best work.

Please review if it pleases you, but please no hate... I'm just trying to improve my writing and have fun with it!

The garden was Loki's private escape. It was well-kept under his pale hands, the flowers, few vegetables, and fruit seemed to lean toward him instead of recoiling away at his cold touch. The green areas were his favourite- how could they not be with his same-colored eyes? This was a place where he needed no magic to have things work out for him. He need not remember so many words or patterns for his plants as he did for his spells. He need not worry that he might overtax himself when tending to the garden. His hands would not dry with the delectable moist leaves as they did with the turning of pages.

Yes, he indeed did love reading, but gardening was more an escape than a pleasure. To care for life... To love these tender and small lives as none had ever done for him, well it only seemed most fitting.

He had been alone since he could remember, left in this small house filled to the brim with books and a small fortune, but he hadn't found out about the fortune till he had finished reading his first spell book.

Loki smiled, recalling that frustrating time. So young and barely able to read, but once he understood the strange markings, he found those words had a secret comfort hidden deep within the underlying context of riddles and poems. However, no matter how hard he pulled, no book would come loose from those shelves, save for one: a medium sized and unimpressive book in its simple, leather-bound state. No markings were upon the cover other than a crudely carved "Magic" that had been filled hastily with gold. The book had been used vigorously. The pages had been turned so often that they had gone from crisp to a soft thin state. The cover was scratched up from use and the title's gold filling was cracked in several places. All in all, an unimpressive book to the youth.

As Loki gently tended to the viridian leaves, he remembered flipping through those soft pages. Going through the book four times, throwing it to the side in frustration as none of it had made any sense. It would be a few months before he even looked at the book again.

It was a rainy night. It always was on the nights Loki felt most creative. Tonight also had thunder and lightning, booming and flashing mightily in the distance. He watched from the large window sill that overlooked a currently muddy patch of fertile dirt that had small plants growing in it here and there. He sat, hugging his knees against his chest, long white fingers gently swirling patterns across the top of his cold bare feet. His boots lay in a muddy mess by the door which was shaking and rattling in its frame thanks to the large gusts of wind accompanying the delightful storm that ravaged outside.

A crack was heard and Loki shuddered, his short black hair that he kept pushed and oiled back lightly grazed against his neck. He looked to the darkened room from his seat upon the sill and shuddered again. This house was magicked. He could tell. As he remembered nothing from early childhood at all, he knew he couldn't be here by accident. He'd been occupying this residence for a while, but time meant nothing to him. In this house, magic was dusted upon everything. Even the wooden beams which helped the interior have warmth against the cold stone that made up the exterior of the house.

Loki recalled waking up. He knew nothing. He could barely remember how to breathe when he opened his eyes, the sunlight pouring in on him from the small window by his bed. He shook his head at the recollection and instead focused on looking out past the muddied patch, past the town that glowed slightly nearly five miles out, and looked up at the large mountain which the kingdom's castle was situated upon. Even from such a distance, Loki could see the fires that lit up micro-sized windows. He smiled. It looked like a toy from his position.

Wait, a toy...? He'd read about those in...

Loki looked toward that corner. He saw the book there, laying in all of its unimpressive glory, mocking Loki with the secrets inside, but keeping the translation key far from him. There it was. Like it had been for a while now.

More thunderous noises and a flash of light illuminated the leather-bound pages. It then seemed to glow in Loki's green eyes.

"Come, come, Loki. Come, open these pages. Come close and become who you are meant to be."

Loki's spine tingled as he slowly unraveled from his position, placing one foot gingerly on the ground after the other, resting his hands on the wooden sill before he used those to push him up. He walked towards the beckoning book, slowly, warily.

"B-Become who I'm meant to be?" He whispered, voice cracking from its not being used often. The book seemed to have quivered when he spoke, it pages rustling slightly. Shaking hands picked up the book gingerly. He returned to his seat just as slowly as he had risen from it, and began to read.

"Through the decades past, there have always been those who were capable of wielding a force so great, so mystical, and so unpredictable. Its name is magic..."

Loki grimaced as a thorn pricked his left ring finger. All his instincts began to reach for that powerful force, but he calmed them.

"Better to let nature take her natural course, especially when surrounded by her earthy embrace." He said softly, staring at the small bead of blood that had swelled out of the prick. Turning away from the small wound, his eyes met with the brilliant face of a rose in bloom. White, and of course pure, his lips curled up in a slight scoff.

"Here we have the one who continuously blooms white amidst the throne of red. A stubborn one, aren't we?" He said to it, shaking his head as his smirk turned to a dazzling smile. "You and I are alike. Where is your white family? Where is your home? Will you continue to pull through the winters as I have? Will you continue your silent exile whilst shrouded in white with not but a staff of green to hold you up? My precious rose, you and I are alike."

Straightening his back, Loki rose and stood. His forest green tunic had a small smudge of dirt on it, while his brown breeches were covered with loose soil. His boots were becoming very dirty again, caked with mud. All this dirt, and yet he was still satisfied. His smile from talking to his rose counterpart was still on his face, but it quickly disappeared when he turned away and walked to the house.

His boots were taken off as soon as he stepped inside, and his tunic and breeches were exchanged for a dark green tunic, black breeches, and his house shoes. He sat at the table in his reading room, picking up the book which he'd left open on it.

His face, usually a blank slate, void of emotions, now showed he was concentrating.

"The spell in which one may, temporarily, become the other gender."

The sun was peeping at him from over the flat roof of the house as he worked in the late morning, weeding his garden. He inspected the leaves of his cabbages, making sure no pest had gotten through his spell that protected his precious garden. He smiled as his white rose. He breathed in the fresh morning air.

Life was so simple here in the garden.


Loud laughter and the sound of hooves interrupted Loki's studies. He stood from his chair, placing his hands on the desk and leaning on them slightly while looking out the window of the reading room. Two men upon horses were riding on the path that ran in front of Loki's home. It strayed slightly from the main traveling road which went unused for the most part. His face was void of emotion as usual, but inside, a small flame of curiosity had lit up. He'd never had much interaction with other people- not including the small exchanges he made between shop and stall owners when he went into town to buy the occasional item.

"Look ho, friend! A pretty little garden. Mayhap there be a pretty little maiden who tends it?" Said the bearded man, reaching out to punch the other, a blonde's arm. "Ah, Volstagg, you may be right yet!" Exclaimed the blonde as he jumped off his horse and made his way past the grass strip, hesitating before stepping over the raised soil Loki had arranged in order to make the garden barriers more aesthetically pleasing to his emerald eyes.

The pale man inside twitched, but dare not move. He stood stock-still, barely even breathing as he watched the tall, muscular man tread through the tidy dirt-floored isles of his private escape. His eyes flickered between the human and the white rose that was proudly growing taller than the rest in the far corner of the patch. Loki's heart stopped as the blonde's direction suddenly turned towards the rose.

"A beautiful flower! It shall make all women swoon no doubt." The blonde man yelled gleefully to his companion. Volstagg laughed in agreement, but his hand soon moving to the sword at his belt when he saw a tall, pale man storm out of the house right towards the man he was supposed to be guarding.

"Thor!" Volstagg said in warning. Loki managed to reach him just before the blonde's large hand had closed around the stem of the white rose. Thor looked over right as the man in green managed to slap him harshly across the face. Thor kept his balance, but in his hands was his sword, and it was at Loki's white neck. Their eyes met, cerulean irises against jade ones.

The sword-wielding man stepped back, lowering his sword slightly. Those same jade eyes watched him carefully, a spell already on the verge of being released.

"...You're no maiden." Thor said stupidly. Volstagg rolled his eyes and decided to watch. He was amused, for he had seen no man slap another before.

Jaw jutting up slightly, Loki used two careful fingers to push the threatening sword away from him. He moved instead to stand in front of his beloved rose bush, his stance defensive. Thor lowered the sword all the way, then sheathed it, keeping his brilliant blue eyes on Loki the entire time.

"Tell me your name." He said.

"... Loki." He hesitated before saying his name.

Trust didn't come easily to Loki- he had no one to show him how to trust after all. He was quite wary of the two strangers who wielded swords and talked loudly. Their attire suggested they came from the royal courts, and their gear on the horses went on further to imply they had been hunting. Volstagg looked on as Loki's eyes flitted about; he could tell the thin one was taking in the entire situation as fast as he possibly could. On the other hand, Thor was simply standing there, looking at the black-haired male in something akin to awe. He'd never seen skin so white, eyes so green and bright, legs so long, fingers so thin and trembling. Not realizing what he was doing until he'd done it, he took one of Loki's hands into both of his and kissed the pale skin on the back.

Eyes widening at his first encounter with intimate contact, Loki snatched his hand away. Volstagg just stared in some disbelief. Thor offered a small smile to the dumbstruck man in front of him before he was blown away by Loki's next move- quite literally.

The shock had turned to anger inside of Loki and he thrust a hand out towards Thor's chest, an invisible gust of wind forming and blowing the other off the ground and landing onto the grass strip.

"My Prince!" Volstagg exclaimed, failing as he tried to get off his horse swiftly to help the now winded man.

Loki watched as the bearded man helped the winded one up, holding his violated hand to his chest, eyes wide, looking as if he were about to cry. Volstagg shook Thor slightly, trying to get him to focus on his face. When Thor didn't respond to that or Volstagg's words, the bearded one turned to look at Loki with narrowed eyes.

"What have you done, sorcerer? What have you done to the Prince of Asgard?" He bellowed. Loki flinched at those words and did not look at Volstagg.

He instead looked to Thor and yelled at him.

"Leave! You aren't welcome! Leave!" He clutched his left hand closer to his chest that before, nearly cutting off circulation to the extremity, his knuckles turning white as he held it. Too scared to see what the stranger in the garden was also capable of, Volstagg threw Thor across his horse's saddle and rode off as quickly as possible. Loki remained standing there, watching as the pair stormed away.