As he entered the clock tower and saw the trail of dark blood leading up the stairwell, Thor suddenly thought about cats.
Steve Rogers loved the little creatures and kept a few around in the mansion. One time, one of the older cats just up and left and never returned, and when he asked Rogers had explained that once they felt it coming, cats will go to face death alone. And this was how, when Loki had escaped confinement, he knew. The rest of the Avengers didn’t, but Thor knew. It was probably because of the strong bond they had shared during youth that he could sense just how faint, how immaterial, Loki felt, but he knew. He couldn’t explain it to the rest of the Avengers because they wouldn’t understand. Because they would have kept Loki as long as they could there and watch him wither and die and checked his pulse and cut off his head right after just to make sure he’s really dead.
So Thor had left and, making sure they wouldn’t be able to follow him, searched for his not-brother.
He found Loki hunched in a secluded corner just behind the giant clock face, breath strained and eyes half-lidded, staring through glass into the horizon outside. His robe, burnt and tattered, was discarded along bits of broken armor. The blood trail ended in a small pool beneath him, spilled from an unseen wound beneath a shattered breastplate. It took him a while to notice Thor standing just a few feet away and with a snarl, lashed out with the last reserves of magic he could manage. It was so weak Thor barely felt it as a gust.
Thor placed Mjölnir gently on the floor and as if approaching a skittish, wounded animal, slowly moved toward Loki with arms raised and their palms out. “I didn’t come to fight, brother.”
“That is unheard of,” Loki wheezed, face contorted in menace to hide a pained grimace. “Here to kick the Jötun dog while it’s down, then?”
Thor was used to the verbal whipping that is Loki’s definition of a conversation, but he couldn’t stand it right now. Not when Loki was waning even more by the second. “Why do you always say such things?”
“Nothing the flaccid tendrils of your intelligence would be able to grasp,” Loki hissed, recoiling when Thor got within arm’s reach. “I don’t need pity from a halfwit; leave me at peace and I will spare you the next time we meet.”
“There won’t be a next time,” Thor quietly said and saw Loki’s annoyed look replaced with shock. “This halfwit understands better than you think.”
Thor touched Loki’s arm and the latter jerked as if Thor’s skin was fire. “Don’t,” Loki protested with decreasing intensity, squirming as Thor sat behind him and held Loki to his chest. “Don’t,” Loki said again, “Why can’t you leave me be? You—you blathering oaf.” There was no more malice in his tone, only resigned ire.
“Because,” Thor whispered into the raven hair, locks matted with blood. It smelled of fire and steel. It smelled of Loki. “Because I love you.”
At that Loki made a sound that was not unlike a whimper.
“I love you,” Thor repeated. It was a confession too late, far too late; and he knew it was useless, but he needed Loki to hear it. “I love you. Love you.” Thor couldn’t stop. All the eternity he had wasted without saying anything culminated into this moment, into those three words; and they gushed from within him, riding rushed on frantic breaths. He held Loki tighter and felt the latter’s shoulders shook in heaving gasps. Loki was crying. He wanted to kiss the tears off Loki’s face and his hand moved to wipe them but the cheeks were cold and dry. It dawned on him that perhaps Loki had spent all his tears long ago, in silence, without witness.
His large hand moved to Loki’s jaw, cradling and comforting. Loki let out a short, quiet sigh and leaned into the touch. Thor felt sharper edges beneath his fingers and missed the time when the slopes were more curved, more forgiving. The gentler days when Loki’s whole body had been pliant and soft and warm and aglow under the sun, untouched by anything but Thor. It gutted him, how wiry and strung Loki had become. How quickly the madness had overtaken Loki and how belated his own remorse was.
He nuzzled deeper into Loki’s hair, closing his eyes so tight it hurt, branding his mind with the scent and the texture and the feel of Loki inside his arms, his heart thudding against the harsh of Loki’s spine, Loki’s slight frame heavy and pressing and alive and breathing in rhythm to him. Thor wanted to remember everything. He desperately needed to. Hurry, he prompted himself. Hurry.
Loki’s breathing was slowing.
“Sleep, brother,” the words were painful on his tongue, but Thor forced them out anyway. “Sleep knowing you are loved.”
A bony hand was on his, pale if not for the vivid streaks of blood painting it in a garish color.
“My brother,” Loki rasped, “my king.” The hand gave a slight squeeze, and then Loki stilled.
It took Thor a while to realize the long, keening sound ringing in his ears was actually his. “Slouching. You’re slouching, Loki,” Thor whined in-between sobs, swallowing his own tears, bitter with guilt and regret. “You’re—oh, the Nine. Loki. Loki.”
Outside the clock tower, a rainstorm poured and pounded.#have some free angst on me #loki #thor #thorki #thorloki #thor loki #thor x loki #thorxloki #le casual doodling #le casual typing