Disclaimer: I own nothing of the Marvel's universes. I have, however, really had fun playing around and picking and choosing different things to throw in from different fanfic prompts, comics, movies, and one fanfic story which I can't remember the title gave me the chains Loki is confined with. Just please remember that if there is anything that you think you've probably read or seen before, it probably isn't mine and I fully admit it! Lol
Title: Hawkling or Say What?!
Hawkeye sat perched on the back of one of two couches, watching everything happening around him. 'Tony Stark has a strange concept of what a hospital suite should be,' Clint decided. Knowing that Stark hated doctors with a passion and knowing the reason for that, (the ARC reactor embedded in the man's chest) did explain why Stark had a private medical suite in his tower. The man wasn't stupid and he was well aware of how fragile his health could be if the ARC reactor was damaged, not to mention his alcoholism, etcetera, but if it wasn't for the remote sensors and bandages on Loki's belly, and the holographic screen floating in front of Doctor Banner, Clint would have thought that he was in one of Stark's luxury suites.
"Thor, are antibiotics going to work on Loki?" Banner asked, checking both the screen and Loki's incision site.
"You need not worry about infection, Doctor Banner," Thor said. He was standing at the end of the bed, watching his brother writhe in the chains and gag confining Loki to the bed. "It is but a minor wound and did not disturb any of his organs. We learned the healing of such injuries as children. I worry more for what poison that monster may have placed in my brother's blood through that afore we could set Loki free from the bondage that held him prisoner." Thor's glare at the three inch by five inch, glowing blue crystal shard Tony Stark was handling as he slumped in a recliner over by the floor to ceiling windows left no doubt about how Thor felt about whomever it was that had been controlling his brother.
Clint couldn't help but shudder at remembering having his bow drawn and ready to shoot Loki as he and the other Avengers entered the main living area of Stark's tower apartment, only to find the God of Mischief crying and trying to carve his own belly open. Thor had managed to stop him, only to have Loki waver back and forth between begging his older brother to get 'it' out of him and hurling insults. It had been Black Widow who had told them that Hawkeye had gone through the same thing when he was leveling out from the mind control that he'd been under after she had done her 'cognitive recalibration'. Her hand patting his calf brought Clint back to the present, and he petted the red hair between his knees to let Natasha know that he was ok. Natasha went back to flipping through a magazine, exhausted and thoroughly bored with watching the proceedings. She was far more interested in the food that they were all waiting for Steve to bring up.
"How long do you think this has been in him?" Stark wondered. He was flipping the container holding the shard over and over, idly glancing between the shard and yet another set of floating holographic screens. Clint thought that it was a good thing Stark was too tired to do any real investigation on the thing. There was no telling how big the explosion would be in that case.
"Three and a half to four centuries or so. It would have taken time for it to have grown large enough for its master to command Loki's actions, but it would need not be large to cause my nephew's deformity," Thor said solemnly. "Also the seed crystal must have been extremely small for not only Loki, but our mother to not have noticed it in his food."
Clint knew that story – but then he'd read up on Thor and his family when Thor had shown up in New Mexico and the brothers had nearly leveled the small town in their grudge match. There was nothing like having a front row seat to a disaster to get a guy interested in learning what he could about the combatants involved. He really wasn't sure how sensitive a topic it was though that Sleipnir had eight legs instead of four, and while he might be the sort of guy who would tease and prank, he wasn't a bully. Growing up in the circus and being friends with the side show freaks had done that much for him. It was also the real reason that he hadn't gone along with Trick Shot when he'd stolen the cash box from the circus. His one-time mentor had also killed Tracy the Legless Woman, who had done the circus' books as well as performed in the side show, in that robbery.
"How many kids does Loki have, and how are they doing?" Clint asked, his mind on the three kids that Tracy had left behind. He figured he'd better get his question in before Stark opened his mouth about Sleipnir.
"I know of four – Sleipnir, Jormungandr, Fenris, and Hella; and you, friend Clint, are a good man to think of them. They know not what has passed these last few days. All of Asgard and most of the other realms believe that Loki is dead, killed by his fall from the bifrost bridge last year. They only know that he is dead, and thus they grieve for the loss of their mother," Thor said.
"Wait, mother? I thought that Loki was a guy?" Tony asked. Men getting pregnant was a horrible situation to his way of thinking.
"The guy likes to shape shift and have kids according to the stories, Stark. It's none of our business if that's true," Clint pointed out.
"Well, that's a little better I guess," Tony muttered to himself.
"Yes and no," Thor told them, a sad expression on his face. "My brother is a Frost Giant by birth and they are able to choose if they will be sire or dam to their children. Loki prefers to be a mother. I think that this is because he and our mother, Frigga, have always been close."
"From what I read, the Frost Giants were your enemies," Natasha questioned.
Thor nodded. "I thought that learning the truth about his heritage was the cause of Loki's madness, but now I know that the blame lies with another."
"It couldn't have helped that's for sure, but that thing," Clint nodded in Tony's direction, "being inside the guy means that he was just as much of a puppet as I was. I'm still pissed about the whole mind control thing, don't get me wrong, but I'm not going to put an arrow in Loki's eye socket for something that wasn't his fault."
Natasha dropped her magazine and turned to look up at Clint with narrowed eyes. "You don't think that Loki is faking. Why?" she demanded to know.
Clint sighed. He knew that was why she was still here, still on alert but resting while she could instead of helping Steve get the shwarma or reporting back to SHIELD. "It was something he said to Selvig. It wasn't all fangirl squee…"
"Wait, fangirl squee? Where did you learn about that? I mean you two are all stealthy ninja types, that's not the kind of thing that would happen to you, unlike me," Tony interrupted.
Clint rolled his eyes. "We had a mark go to a convention, can't tell you more than that, but even up in the rafters I couldn't escape that pitch and it nearly fried my comms. Anyway, Loki wasn't talking like that. It was more like he was one of those adventure gamers who had been given a map to the entire game and he wanted to know what Selvig and I had gotten."
"I know the voice of which you speak," Thor said, a smile finally breaking through the gloom on his face. "Loki has always been one who valued knowledge above trophies when it came to our adventuring."
"Anyway, Selvig was going on about being shown more than mere knowledge, that he'd seen the truth. Then Loki said that 'The tesseract shows us all different things.' And he asked me what I'd seen," Clint finished.
"And what did the glowy blue cube show you, Barton?" Stark pestered.
Clint had absolutely no intention of telling Stark anything that would make him vulnerable to the billionaire. That was the same reason that he'd said that the high pitched squeal from the fangirls at the conference had nearly fried his comms instead of his hearing aids. It wasn't that they weren't both, but Stark did not need to know about his hearing loss. They might be on the same team, but they weren't teammates yet. The potential was there as the battle had shown, but it would be awhile before Clint could trust the other man the way he trusted Tasha.
So he gave Stark the same partial answer he'd given Loki. "My next target," Clint said. Then he turned to look at Bruce. "This is the way it works… I think. Whatever your focus is when it takes you over, that's what you stay focused on and everything else gets shoved back into the mental closet as not something important, and then whoever is in control uses that focus to turn you to his/its/her purpose. Selvig's was the tesseract. He'd been working on it for months. He was worried about Loki getting his hands on it. Mine was my target, my mission, because I was fighting Loki when he took me over. From what I saw, I'd guess that Loki was concentrating on being a king. He was obsessed with it the same way Selvig was the tesseract."
"My banishment," Thor cursed. He looked like he wanted to bring the full might of his hammer down on their unseen enemy. Noticing the stares coming from all around him, he explained. "Loki arranged for me to be punished for my arrogance. He was right to do so. I would have made a terrible king had I not been made aware of my own faults. I was little more than a childish bully who always thought he was right and spared no thought for other's feelings or rights. He was as shocked as I was when the Allfather banished me to Midgard as a mortal man.
"My father has a condition that we call the Odinsleep. When he falls into it, his body appears to sleep, but his mind sees all, in all of the realms. I was supposed to take the throne and rule in his stead while he slept, but my banishment made that impossible. He tried to hold the Odinsleep at bay until my return, but could not. He fell into the Odinsleep just after telling Loki about his adoption. Mother said that Loki looked shocked when she told him that he would have to take the throne in my place. He must have thought that she would do so as she had done before, but she insisted that it was his place to do so."
"And while he's having a bad case of stage fright, trying to convince himself that he is supposed to be king, that he is Odin's son, that he'll get the job done right and make his dad proud…" Steve said as he entered the room. He set the large package in his hands down and caught the disbelieving looks from his team. "Enhanced hearing," he shrugged.
"While that's going on our evil overlord wanna be triggers the crystal and Loki goes from nervous prince hoping the everything is going to work out the way he wants, to as crazy as a bag of cats obsessed with being a king, that it is his rightful place and everyone and everything is against him," Bruce finished Steve's speculation.
"It fits. Everything I ever heard him say, all his plans to kill Thor, get back at Odin and prove them wrong, even his little jaunts into lala land," Clint agreed.
"Lala land? And since when did you get stage fright? Didn't you tour with the USO for like months before you went to the front lines?" Tony asked.
"Tony, spending months as a dancing monkey is exactly why I know what stage fright is," Steve retorted, as he began passing out shwarma, French fries and drinks out to the team.
"And I don't know what else to call it when Loki would go transparent and have arguments with nothing that I could see. I figure that he was talking to whoever was in charge of the space whales," said Clint. He'd had shwarma before. It wasn't too bad in his opinion. He'd definitely had worse when he was growing up. Eric the strong man's stroganoff to name one; he'd barely been able to keep that down even as a starving teenaged boy.
"So he's probably not faking," Natasha sighed, accepting her share of the food from Steve.
"Probably not," Stark agreed.
"How long will he be forced to endure this?" Thor asked, as Loki's muffled screams took on a new intensity.
"Around ninety six hours assuming that he's had the crystal in him for four hundred years. So he should be fine in about four days or so. I guess we'll meet your real little brother then, Point Break," Tony said carelessly.
Thor shook his head. "Not for some time after that I fear."
"Hey! My math is never wrong. Two hours for Legolas to get clean after three days exposure means that ninety six hours for four centuries. I mean, it could be less going on the number of years you think Reindeer Games might have been under, but that's what the math says," Tony protested.
"I do not question your math my friend, but there is a factor that is missing from your equation. Loki wears the Bindings of Sannindi. He will be unable to speak anything but the truth for as many hours as he wears them. I believed that I would be bringing my brother back for the AllFather's judgment. Instead he wears the bindings so that he will neither hurt himself or others, but the effects will still be the same."
"So four days of guard duty and four days for the interrogations," Clint said. "That's not bad. Who wants the first watch?"
"Thor and I will take it. The rest of you need to get some sleep once you've finished eating," Steve said, sitting down with his own portion of the food.
"Yes Dad," Tony smarted off, but everyone knew Steve was right. The demi-god and the super soldier were the only ones not completely wiped out right now.