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12 December 2013 @ 11:22 am
Checkmate 1/1  
Gen, 1200 words

summary: This was not the plan.

Missing scene for Thor 2: The Dark World. Spec about an unseen player.



The storm of gravel and ash howled, and Thor huddled around Jane's fragile mortal skin as they retreated before the wind and away from Loki's fallen form. The fiercely blowing sand covered the plain where Loki's blood flowed yet, red dripping into the black dust.

Yet as soon as Thor and Jane had found sanctuary deep within the stone, the winds died around the body, making a strange calm in the center of the wind storm. The air shimmered and rippled, and a pair of armored figures emerged, moving with feral grace, then another and another, forming two rows straight to the fallen body.

Anyone who had been in New York would recognize the creatures as Chitauri, but no one else was there to see them.

Far Heimdall watched Thor, Jane, and Malekith the Accursed on Midgard and did not turn his eyes back to Svartalfheim to see the stranger who walked down the aisle formed by the Chitauri soldiers. The footsteps fell heavily, crunching stone beneath the massive body and armor that would have crushed any mortal to the ground beneath its weight. He approached the still body, and cold dark eyes observed the lifeforce ebbing away with his blood to the dry rocks beneath him. "Escape is not so easy for you, traitor."

He gestured with his free hand, and Loki rose from the ground in an invisible grip. His limbs and head hung limply in mid-air, and he did not breathe. In a few minutes nothing could have pulled him back.

But his time was not yet ended, and fell power rushed forth to grab him tightly, twining about him, digging into his flesh and forcing it to knit, his heart to beat, and the great immortal power within him to stay bound to his body and give it life once more. Loki let out a cry, burning as the healing rushed through him like fire, forcing him to return when he wanted to let go.

When it was done, his eyes opened. He saw the great figure facing him and his eyes widened in terror. He flinched backward but held tightly in his invisible bonds he could not move. "Thanos," he whispered. "No…"

"You failed to give me the tesseract," Thanos declared. "Did I not promise to punish failure?"

Loki pushed out through trembling lips, "It is safe. You will never reach it."

His defiance amused the Eternal, whose own lips widened in a terrible grin. "But you will."

Loki raised his chin and declared through gritted teeth, "Never."

Thanos raised the spear in his hand. It was short, curved, with a glowing stone at one end. Loki's eyes widened at the sight of it. "You recognize this. I made a new one, after you so carelessly lost my gift." His gaze fixed on the tip as Thanos extended it toward him. "I gave you an alliance, an army, and you repaid me with treachery."

"It … wasn't my fault," Loki protested, his voice high and tight. "The mortals--"

The tip touched his chest and his voice choked in his throat to silence. "You betrayed me, trickster." Thanos' eyes glinted with chill wrath. "You lie to others, but I know your heart. You sought to keep my prize from me. But this time, there shall be no room for trickery. No doors. No windows. No escape." The cruel gaze of unfathomable depth met Loki's. "You belong to me."

"No," Loki whispered, and shook his head, eyes fearful. "No." But he held back the plea for mercy, knowing there was none.

The blue gem of the scepter flared and Loki's spine arched as the agony sparked through him. The terrible compulsion settled into his mind, and his attempt to fight was swept away by the power, a leaf consumed in fire. There was nowhere to hide as it burned through flesh and bone and burrowed into his spirit, a foul invader seeking his very heart to take command of his will and turn it toward Thanos.

Loki's head snapped back as he screamed, but the noise went unheard beyond the storm.

When he fell quiet, Thanos lowered his arms, and Loki fell to both knees in the gravel. His head bowed, hair hanging in his face.

"Who do you serve?" Thanos demanded.

The answer came quiet but swift, in a voice hoarse with screaming, "You." His body shivered, some part of him remembering that he wanted to resist, but he otherwise did not move.

Thanos grinned, and with the tip of the scepter, he raised Loki's chin so he would look up. Loki's eyes shone a brilliant, unnatural blue. "I am not without generosity, my servant. You wished a Realm to rule, and a Realm you shall have."

"Which Realm?" Loki asked tonelessly.

"Asgard, of course. When Malekith falls, Asgard will be flush with chaos. Blind the seer's eyes and take Borson's place. It should be simple with your skills, trickster. Rule it well in Borson's name, and that shall be your reward. Protect my treasures, until I come for them."

"Yes, my lord."

"And remember, my hound, there is no Realm, no void, no death where you can flee. I will always find you and take you back. You are mine."

Without hesitation or objection, Loki answered, "Yes, my lord."

The large hand settled on the crown of Loki's head, at first lightly but the grip tightened, digging into his skin and the bones beneath tightly enough he would have cried out, if he could. Thanos pulled Loki's head back to look down into his face, pitiless gleaming eyes holding empty blue ones. "Be king of the vermin of Asgard. Serve me better, this time, my hound. Or your immortal life will be nothing but pain."

His lips shaped the words without voice, "Yes, my lord," and he took the offered scepter in one white hand that trembled. Thanos released him, and Loki bowed his head again. Thanos turned and walked back the same way he'd come, and the Chitauri gathered in behind him. They all disappeared into the wind storm and vanished.

Loki knelt, one hand clutching the scepter, as the gravel pelted him in the renewed wind, but he did not move until the storm had passed.

The blue faded from his eyes and he stirred, blinking himself to alertness and gathering the shards of his will. His eyes closed in pained, weary grief. "Forgive me, Mother," he whispered. "All I wanted was to avenge you and see you again. Yet that is denied me now."

His fingers tightened on the scepter, but would not release it, no matter how he tried to tell himself to let go. His eyes opened, gaze piercing beyond the clouds to the growing convergence. Malekith would make his move soon, to bring darkness to the Realms.

Destroy your own Realm first, Malekith. Please, if you do naught else, launch the aether here.

He could feel the inky serpent coiled around his will, much worse than before. Loki knew exactly what to do to obey that serpent, and he would, no matter how he pushed against it from within.

Please, Malekith. I have but minutes of freedom to beg for this end.

But the only one to ever hear his cries was gone, and there was no succor from Malekith or the ancestors or the fates. Loki watched as Malekith died never knowing that his vengeance on the House of Bor would come by another's hand mere steps away.

On Asgard, Loki took Odin's throne, but felt no glee knowing he ruled himself least of all. He transfigured the scepter into the appearance of Gungnir and put the guards under his control. Heimdall fought bravely, but as Loki's will was bound, soon Heimdall's was, too. Together they began to prepare the way for Thanos' conquest.

A scream of denial and rage built inside the darkness within. He clawed at the phantom chains that bound him, searching for a way out, but found none. The shadow held him more tightly than the cell in the dungeons, and his only recourse was to hope that Thor -- someone, anyone -- would uncover his deception.

When he stood in the shadows where the brighter lights of Asgard could not reach, his eyes gleamed a brighter blue than they should have. But, hidden behind the illusion of Odin's face, no one saw.

Crossposted from DW There are comment count unavailable comments over there. Feel free to comment wherever.
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