Hello, this is the final chapter *screams internally*. I will post a proper author's note tomorrow because it's three am here and I want to sleep. See you then.
WARNING: talk about RAPE in this chapter as well but nothing graphic. And there is Sleipnir's story in here too, and talk about genocide.
Everything made sense now. Everything! Why he was always second best. Why Odin always looked at him with that look in his eyes. Why people avoided him. All these years, all this time, and there was nothing he could do about it. Everyone else had known, everyone had known what a disgusting monstrous abomination he was. Everyone but him.
A frost giant.
That's what he were, is and are always going to be. A Jötunn from Jötunnheim, a killing monster, never hesitating one second before killing something. Living only to see blood flow and life die.
And on top of that a runt! A disgrace to his biological father as well as his adoptive on because of what he is. And there was nothing at all he could do about it.
Loki sat down on his bed and rested his head in his hands, breathing deeply in order to keep himself in one piece and to stop himself from destroying his chambers, again. He wanted, his mother. No, Frigga. No- his mother, always his mother. But he was afraid that when he looked into her eyes he would see disgust, and horror.
He felt tears prickel in the corners of his eyes and furiously wiped his eyes. He felt so alone and so worthless and so disgusted with himself. His whole life had been a lie, he had never been Odin's son, he had never been Thor's brother, he had never been an Asir. He had never even had a chance of being worthy, of anything.
He felt a tear run down his cheek and once again wiped his eyes, angry at his own weakness. Of course he would never be worthy if he behaved like this. He felt more tear spill from the corners of his eyes and wiped them away as well, but for every tear he removed two others emerged. He soon gave up on trying to hide his weakness and collapse down on his bed, allowing the tears to run freely down his cheeks.
He just wanted his fath-, no Odin, to look at him with pride in his eye for once. Was that really too much to ask. To have Odin speaking the words 'Loki, I'm proud son'. Was it? Was he mad for wishing such a thing?
Didn't he have the opportunity now? Now when there was no Thor around who could outshine him, now that Odin lay resting and Asgard was unprotected, now that he was king.
Now was his chance, he would show them all he was worthy. He would show them that Loki was the rightful king of Asgard.
But how? How could he prove to Father, no Odin, that he was worthy? Loki's lips curled into a wicked smile as the answer revealed itself in his mind. Yes, it was perfect. He would destroy Jötunnheim, erase the frost giants home from existence.
Thor's words echoed in his ears. I'll hunt the monsters down and slay them all. That was exactly what he was going to do, but with more elegance of course. He would use the Bifrost, using its beam to rip the planet apart. He would destroy the race that had been Asgards nemesis for millenias, and he would do it alone. He would succeed where everyone else had failed.
It was easy, he was king and there were no one who could stop him. All he needed to do was to make sure Thor didn't interrupt. The destroyer would be enough to keep his so called 'brother' occupied for long enough. And then he would simply destroy all Jötunns. Simple and eloquent.
Father would be so proud.
Loki had spent little over an hour crying into Natasha's chest, at times wailing in utter despair and at times only whimpering, whispered words of hurt and anguish falling from his tongue. Natasha had sang, songs from her childhood. Foreign phrases dancing in the air, soothing the crying man in her arms.
It had been decided that whatever had happened to Loki it was too big and too severe for any of the Avengers to handle, and Loki was sent to a therapist. At first he had been spitting and sneering that he didn't need therapy, that he was perfectly alright and that if there indeed were any problem with him, which there wasn't, there was no way a simple mortal could help him.
However, Loki's hate couldn't last forever, although it did seem like it at the time being, and soon he warmed up to the therapist. Telling her about his childhood, his attack against earth and the attacks against him, his heritage. And found that even though it hurt to speak about it, he did feel better afterwards. The therapist never ridiculed him or told him to take it as a real man. He found that he could trust her with secrets he had never trusted anyone with ever. And it was nice, to not have to carry all that alone. His world felt brighter and it was easier to breathe, his nightmares became fewer and further apart, he didn't want to hurt and insult everyone he met.
His insult were changed to harmless, although extremely annoying pranks and his cold demeanor softened and he found that he could laugh and smile among people without having someone nagging him at the back of his head that this was all a lie and that they all hated him.
Three months into his therapy Thor reappeared and Loki locked himself in his room for the first time in three months. Thor was still loud and annoying and he took all attention and Loki was forgotten and it hurt again. His therapist had asked more questions about Thor but no matter how much Loki told her about Thor he still wanted to rip the big oaf's head off as soon as he saw him. She suggested family therapy. Loki scoffed. Tony laughed. Thor cheered. The next day the adoptive brothers found themselves in opposite ends of a comfy couch in a family therapist's office. Thor, who still hadn't really understood that all couldn't be solved with him giving his brother a hug and an exchange of apologizes sat with an excited smile on his face. Loki, who had already worked out four plans to kill Thor despite his lack of magic before the therapist had even entered the room, just wanted Thor to go back home.
The therapy had been slow in the beginning, Thor not realizing that treating Loki the way he had could have a connection to how Loki was and felt like now and constantly defending his and other's actions by explaining that this was how everyone was doing, and therefore right. And Loki simply refusing to answer any and all questions without a snappy remark.
This lasted until they came to the story about Sleipnir and Thor told it as if Loki was a weak coward for getting impregnated by the horse and that everything was really a humorous story to tell at feast.
When he told the therapist that he was still ashamed over the fact that Loki had 'lain with a steed' Loki practically explode, screaming at Thor about how it was really a shame that he was so embarrassed over having his brother being raped by a horse. He really apologized for his stupidity over choosing to have his dignity taken by Svaðilfari over death by torture. And not to mention the fact that despite having stopped the giant and saved Freya, the sun and the moon from being taken he was still blamed for all the trouble he caused, and then having to give birth to a foal only to have his child taken away from him to be locked in a stable and ridden by his own grandfather, it must have really pained Thor.
Loki had ended his rant by smashing the glass table in the room and then stormed out, leaving Thor looking after his brother with confusing in his gaze. The therapist had taken her time to properly ask Thor if he had ever tried to put himself in Loki's situation (No) and if he had ever thought about how Loki must feel (No here as well).
Thor had been given the task to think through every scenario he could come up with where Loki had seemed upset in any way, then try to put himself in Loki's seat. How would he feel to have his lips sewn shut while his own people laughed at him? How would he feel to have people making jest at his own children while he himself weren't even allowed to visit them? It wasn't until he asked himself what it would feel like to have to stand alone while his Loki stood on the other side, agreeing with the warriors three and not with his own brother, that Thor truly understood. He felt such anger over not having his brother on his side that he accidentally destroyed one of the man of iron's pads of eye. He understood why Loki hated him so. Loki was always there for Thor, saving him and helping him, even though he would mostly get a laugh out of it too, but most of all Thor could always trust that Loki would side with him. But when he thought back he had never done such a thing for Loki. He was filled with such guilt over which pain Loki must feel and that this kind of pain couldn't be dissipated by a hug and a feast.
So Thor chose his weakest point, words, and used these to apologize to Loki for every time he should have trusted his brother instead of his friends, every time he should have defended Loki when he stood alone against Father and the court of Asgard, every time he should have stopped people from laughing at him but didn't.
Loki had been so shocked over the sincerity of his brother's words and over how much pain and guilt there lay in his eyes that at the end of Thor's speech Loki had hugged him, their first hug for over two years. The two brothers had stayed like that for a long time, simply holding each other and whispering 'I'm sorry' over and over again.
A few week of therapy later Thor had to return to Asgard and when he once again set foot on earth Loki was given his magic back. Tony had been warily at first, thinking that Loki would turn batshit again and fly away on some killing spree. But Loki had simply tested out a few spells, thanked his brother and declined Odin's offer of him returning to Asgard before he walked out of the room to read in the library.
The only real difference from pre-magic Loki to magic Loki was that magic Loki's pranks were much more advanced, such as having left turn to right and right turn to left for an entire day in the tower, causing everyone to get lost, and moving everything five inches to the left so you bumped into everything, although now that Tony thought about it that one might have been done without magic. Apart from that magic Loki was very much as he had always been, well, not always but you know. He still helped Tony in the workshop, he still discussed books with Bruce, he still ate pancakes with Steve and he still drove everyone up the wall with his smug know it all attitude. Even Clint had softened up to Loki when they had bonded over pranks, and then started to prank the others in the tower together.
After some persuasion from Steve, some whining from Tony and with the consent from the other Avengers (and a few threats of removing his sponsoring from Tony but he would never admit to it if asked) Loki became one of them.
Although not officially, that would definitely not go well with anyone's image. Loki was a magic counselor, meaning as soon as soon as Dr Doom, Scarlet witch or Thanos, when he finally attacked (it was quite pathetic, the guy didn't really have an army) he was there to neutralise any spell that had been cast and to make sure that no one was cursed, all under cover of course.
When Natasha, Sunday the eleventh of Mars, walked into the kitchen the last thing she thought she would find was Loki sitting at the kitchen table, spooning in ice cream in his mouth and staring sadly at a small cake in front of him. The cake in question held one candle, not lit, and on the top a few complex runes were painted in frosting.
"I thought you didn't eat ice cream." Natasha commented. The last time he ate it his fingers had turned blue, Loki had been horrified and his therapist had had a field day in how Loki could hate himself so much and still be as narcissistic as he is.
"Well it looks like you were wrong again, no surprise there." He drawled in answer and spooned another chunk of ice cream in his mouth.
Natasha gave him a glare but found that instead of the smug smile Loki usually wore after a comeback the god was sighing into his ice cream. She frowned but decided to wait and see where things were going before making her move.
She opened a cupboard, chose a cup and turned on the coffee maker before once again turning to watch Loki. He was still eating ice cream, his eyes going from looking sadly at the cake to turning to the ice cream and glazing over to turning back to the cake with a sad look once again.
"Feeling okay or do I need to call in your therapist." Natasha didn't show it but she was worried, they had all heard some of Loki's stories, the true ones, not Tony's version, and she couldn't help but feeling bad for Loki. And the stories she had heard were the one Loki had agreed on talking about, which meant they were far from the worst. She should know, both she and Clint had some stories that no one would ever hear.
"'m fine." Loki sighed, looking all but fine. There were no bit to him. Odd he had been fine yesterday. From her experience Loki's mood changes had both disappeared and didn't include this lifeless sadness before.
"Who's the cake for?" Natasha asked, stretching her neck in order to better see the words written on the cake. It had something to do with the cake, she was sure.
Loki looked for a second like he might answer something sarcastic or like he wouldn't answer at all but then he sighed again and took another spoonful.
"It's for Hel" He thought about stopping but by now just talking about it had become second nature to Loki, and besides, he trusted Natasha.
"It's her day of birth. I feel regret over the fact that I never got to meet her, properly."
Natasha took her cup, which were now filled with delicious latte, and slid down into the chair opposite Loki. She stayed quiet and slowly sipped her cup, showing Loki that she was there for him if he wanted it, just like in the hospital room. She really did want to help Loki. She believed in second chances, she didn't know where she would be if Clint and Phil hadn't they offered her a second chance, probably at the bottom of the sea. She thought Loki deserved one after hearing what he had gone through and was trying her hardest to help Loki take full advantage of his second chance. And she wanted to hear about his daughter but no one needed to know that.
"I just miss her." Loki sighed and she could see that the hand gripping the spoon was shaking ever so slightly, and when she looked up Loki looked like he was fighting off tears. "I never got to meet her and I really miss her and it's not fair." His breath hitched once and he brought his had up to wipe the unshed tears from his eyes. Anger was now flashing through Loki's eyes, anger at himself, and Natasha knew she needed to distract him or thing would not end well.
"Hey, it's okay to be sad sometimes." She tried to sound reassuring, she really did, but it came out in her normal monotone voice.
"I'm fine." Loki answered and prodded at the half melted mush of ice cream in the box.
"You sure." She asked, mostly because that's the norm.
"Yeah." Loki told her and Natasha went back to her coffee, not seeing how Loki had stopped to think after his answer, the gears turning quickly in his mind.
It dawned on Loki that he did really feel fine. Sure he was sad now but otherwise he was genuinely happy, only experiencing small periods of self loathing and hatred but otherwise he felt fine. There was no longer a problem to find the energy to get out of bed in the mornings, there was no longer a problem to find the will to force himself through another day, there was no longer a problem to think of Thor, or Odin, or Asgard for that matter.
He smiled a little and gave Hel's cake another look, he would offer Natasha a piece, eat one himself and then leave the cake where everyone could see it and watch them trying to figure out whether it was safe to eat or not. He would be happy on Hel's birthday because that's what Hel would have wanted.
"Yeah I'm fine."
Reviews are highly appreciated