A Brother's Protection

Disclaimer: I don't own anything from the movie Thor and I'm not making any money from this fic

Summary: AU. When Loki falls from the rainbow bridge, Thor follows him, his first instinct to always protect his brother

Warning(s): Spanking (sort of); spoilers for the movie Thor; AU for any events afterwards; some mentions of violence

Author's Note: This story is written for the image Protection. Well... it's more like it was inspired by the picture. This came from that image

When Loki let go of the other end of the staff, the only thought that went through Thor's mind was the fact that he was about to lose his brother... the person he'd been closest to his entire life. He had no idea what had caused Loki to act in this way, but he only had a split second to make his decision.

Thor allowed his own body to go slack and he felt his father's grip on his ankle loosen. The AllFather was strong, but Thor had just made himself go limp and within moments, Odin let go entirely.

Thor felt air rushing past him. Falling - rather than flying - was a very strange feeling, but Thor was falling fast enough that he caught up with his brother fairly quickly. Although they were still falling, he reached out and grabbed hold of Loki, intending to do his best to break his brother's fall even if he wouldn't be able to shield Loki from the impact entirely.

As soon as Thor's hands came into contact with Loki, however, his brother reacted as if he'd just been burned. Loki struggled and writhed so violently that Thor had to pull him to himself in a tight embrace.

"Let me go!" Loki spat, unable to do anything but wriggle, since Thor had his arms trapped against his sides.

"Never." Even without his hammer, Thor still had his god powers. He used them to slow their descent as much as he could, but he couldn't stop them from being pulled into a swirling vortex. He pulled Loki in closer and tighter, shielding his brother's face from the harsh wind against his tunic.

The wind quickly grew stronger and harsher, making it impossible for even Thor to see anything. He closed his eyes and focused on just slowing their descent so they wouldn't slam into the ground with enough force to cause even them serious damage.

Presently, the rushing wind stopped and Thor became aware of the fact that he was now lying on a hard surface. He'd apparently collided with hard ground with enough force to make his whole body ache, but when he opened his eyes, he saw - with some relief - that Loki was lying on his stomach.

Apparently, Loki was absolutely fine, if the way he immediately began to struggle was any indication.

Thor tightened his arms around his brother and looked down into eyes the same shade green as emeralds. "I'm stronger than you, brother. You're not going to get anywhere unless I allow it - and I don't choose to yet."

"I'm not your brother!" Loki hissed, only increasing his struggles.

Thor frowned, pushing away the problem of just where they were to deal with the far more pressing one of dealing with his brother. "What are you talking about, Loki? We are brothers. I love you."

"Don't say that!"

There was a note of desperation in Loki's voice beneath the anger. Thor frowned, worry pricking at him. "Why? What's happened to you? We used to share everything, Loki. I could never see you as anything other than my beloved little brother."

Loki laughed - a harsh, bitter sound that had the edge of hysteria to it. "And they call me the one with a silver tongue. I tried to kill you. I lied to you. I took your place. Don't bother trying to trick the trickster, Thor."

"I don't lie to you, Loki. And I'm not trying to trick you. I wish you didn't feel like this, but all I can do is tell you that whatever else you might feel, my feelings for you are unchanged. I do love you. Nothing has changed that. Nothing could ever stop you from being my brother." Although most of Thor's attention was on his brother, he was still taking note of their surroundings and was ready to act if there appeared to any danger.

While it was quiet, though, he didn't need to worry.

"The AllFather took me from Laufey. Laufey is my true father. I am not of Asgard. I'm a Frost Giant. I'm your enemy. I'm a monster." The words poured out of Loki in a wave of anger - but underneath the anger, there was pain... fear.

Thor frowned, arms tightening around Loki. He took a deep breath, intending to express his disbelief. Then, he released it again. He'd wondered why Loki seemed so drawn to ice magic. He wasn't anywhere near as big as one of the Frost Giants, but although he was thin, he was tall. And when Loki got angry, it normally blew cold.

Most of those things Thor would have dismissed as being unimportant. They still weren't - not to him. Frost Giant or not, Loki was still his brother. It didn't matter that they weren't related by blood. They'd been raised as brothers. "Can't you see that doesn't make a difference to me? I love you, Loki. I don't see a monster when I look at you."

Loki was silent for several moments, but when he spoke, it wasn't in response to what Thor had just said. "You need to let me go. I need to see where we are."

Thor frowned. "There is no danger and I believe we're far from both Asgard and Midgard. You simply do not want to have this conversation, but I do not intend to just leave things as they are."

"Well, I've clearly learnt my lesson - and since you're not holding onto my staff, I assume you lost it. So you don't need to worry about me using my magic against you. Therefore, there is no need to hold me like this."

"Do you think that's the only reason I'm holding onto you?"

"I don't know what's going through that head of yours, but I don't want to be here when you finally return to your senses."

Thor pushed himself up slowly, his arms still wrapped around Loki, ignoring the slightly displeased sound his brother made. He took his time looking around, taking note of the fact that they seemed to be outside a forest, in an area that seemed fairly deserted. In reality, he was forcing himself not to raise his voice.

If anyone could match him for stubbornness, it was Loki.

Satisfied that there was truly no danger - or in fact anyone around at all - Thor returned his gaze to Loki. "Why do you think I fell off the rainbow bridge with you?"

Something impossible to read passed across Loki's face, but his voice when he replied was caustic. "Who can tell why the Crown Prince of Asgard does anything?"

"You sent the Destroyer after me." Thor saw the flash of pain and guilt that passed across Loki's face - hidden quickly, but it was there. "And then you tried to goad me into fighting you. I think you wanted to be stopped," he continued in a much quieter voice. "You were crying out for help... to me, the one person who has done nothing other than protect you as my brother since I first laid eyes on you." He deliberately didn't say born, choosing to let that distinction show how he felt about Loki.

"You assume too much." Loki sneered.

Thor nodded slowly. "I have no doubts that we will be able to return home eventually. In the meantime, it seems that I have to prove a few things to you." He was sitting up, so it was a simple matter to adjust his grip on Loki and turn his brother across his lap.

Loki tensed immediately under his brother's hands. That only lasted a moment, though, before he renewed his struggles. "Let go of me!"

"No, brother. And don't try to tell me that we are not brothers. Whatever blood you carry, we have been raised as brothers. And I will deal with this as your older brother." Getting a firmer grip on Loki, he raised his other hand and sharply smacked the backside across his lap.

The effect on Loki was immediate. He let out an indignant squeal and threw his hand back, grabbing Thor's arm and digging his nails in sharply.

Thor grunted with the pain and paused to pull Loki's hand free. "Surely you must have expected some form of punishment after everything you've done."

"Maybe so, but since I'll be getting banished anyway, I'd rather you left me in relatively good physical comfort, rather than trying to torture me further!"

"What do you mean, torture? It's merely a spanking, brother. You've experienced plenty of those while growing up."

There was no response in words from Loki, but Thor felt his brother's body beginning to shake. Surprised, he reached out a hand and touched Loki's shoulder just as the first gut-wrenching sobs started.

Loki cried so little that this was actually more disturbing than anything else he'd done. Thor didn't hesitate even so and pulled his brother up from across his lap, pulling him into a tight embrace and hugging him, silently thankful when his brother didn't pull away and just dropped his head to his shoulder, clutching Thor's tunic in both hands as he sobbed.

Rocking his brother gently and soothingly, Thor held him through the tears and continued to hold him even after the storm passed and Loki lay quietly in his arms, shuddering a little but not trying to pull away.

The two of them just stayed like that for several moments, Thor with his arms around his brother and Loki just laying against his chest, shuddering a little.

When Loki finally spoke, his voice was soft and a little hoarse from crying so hard. "I'm sorry."

"You don't need to apologise to me, brother. There's nothing wrong with crying."

Loki shook his head slowly. "That's not what I meant." He burrowed in closer to Thor. "I'm sorry... for all of it. For sending the Destroyer to kill you. For letting the Frost Giants into the palace in the first place. I just... you weren't ready to rule. And then when I found out what I... what I am... I guess I just lost control. You were gone and I couldn't handle that and the knowledge of... of what I really am. The only thing I can say is that I'm sorry... but that's not enough."

"Loki..." Thor hugged him tighter. "It's more than enough to have my brother back. You don't have to apologise. Just don't say that we're not brothers anymore."

Loki touched his hand to Thor's chest, his fingers opening wide. "I could never say that... my brother."

The End