Both Tony and Thor were waiting at Banner’s secure cell. Maia was honestly surprised neither Hill nor Fury were present, but perhaps they were less worried than she thought they were about Loki having his powers unleashed. Thor escorted Loki in first to disable the cuff while Tony offered Maia a wrist strap of her own, having had her sign the consent form for her to be put to bed.
‘What’s this for?’ She asked even as she allowed him to attach it to her, positioned over her pulse.
‘It’ll keep track of your heart rate, will let us know how you’re holding up, and, double tap here,’ he pointed to a discreet panel, ‘and we send help.’
‘You really mistrust him that much?’ She asked quietly.
‘The upper echelons mistrust him that much. I trust him more than I did, but if anything happens to you I’m pretty sure I’m the one who will get it from Chuck.’
‘I trust him, if it helps.’
‘Really doesn’t.’ He pulled a face. ‘Cameras are on, you’re being monitored, sound and vision, in case you wondered, scream if you need us. We won’t be far.’
‘And if you get a code green?’
‘Alarms, lights, sirens. Thor will activate Loki’s cuff again and the door will release. Just get the hell out, hit the fire exit, but Banner’s hopefully not going to hulk out on us.’
‘I'm not sure we’ll be long anyway.’ She said as Tony activated her band.
‘You don’t think he’ll be able to help?’
‘Not immediately, if at all.’ She looked up at him. ‘Depends on how he’s going to try and succeed where Charles failed.’
‘Not exactly a confidence builder.’
‘Tell me about it.’
‘Just do what you can. If you can’t you haven’t really lost anything.’
Thor came out of the clear cell. ‘Lady Maia, my brother awaits.’
‘Thank you, Thor.’
‘Go get him, kid.’ Tony said as she started to walk away.
‘Okay, old man.’ She flashed him a smile.
‘Here she is.’ Loki smiled wickedly as the door closed behind her with a hiss. ‘The greatest beauty in the nine realms.’
‘God of Lies.’ She said in a sing-song voice. ‘Does that cuff also inhibit your mischief level, because I swear it’s gone up.’
‘Come sit beside me.’ He walked to the far wall and, crossing his legs at the ankles, lowered himself to the floor.
‘Should have asked for cushions.’ She said as she took a seat beside him, legs bent at the knee. ‘So, I’m assuming you have an idea of how you want to start?’ Maia felt herself raise slightly off the floor, her back pushed forward, as rich green cushions appeared all around them. She leant forward and frowned at him. ‘Talk to me, Loki.’
He didn’t make eye contact, rather he rolled his hands around one another, staring at the gap in between as a delicate gold chain with an emerald inlaid amulet appeared from nothing and Maia gasped at both its appearance and beauty. ‘This cuff does more than just limit my magical ability. It also prevents me from reaching my vault.’ He turned and put the chain around her neck, fastening it and untucking her hair, his fingers remaining in her red tresses but his eyes remained on the stone. ‘I would like you to have this.’
‘It’s beautiful.’ She looked down at the stone where it laid just below the hollow of her throat.
‘It was my mother’s.’
Her eyes went wide and she looked into his. ‘I can’t take this!’
‘Of course you can, it is mine to give, now I can access it again.’
‘Loki, this belongs in your family, on Asgard.’
‘It would please me greatly to have you wear it. No more discussion.’ He said it very deliberately, his eyes finally reaching hers. ‘I am going to toy with my powers, and I would like you to watch, sense what you can, memorise what you feel.’
‘Okay.’ She said uncertainly. She was still surprised by the necklace.
‘My mother taught me how to access the power within me, how to conjure what I wished, what I needed. He circled his hands again and a deep gold mist began to form. ‘I was never going to be brawny, like Thor, that much was clear, so she aided me as any good mother would. She was incredibly skilled and I could have had no better a teacher.’
Thor stood with Tony in the control room for the cell behind the two technicians, listening to Loki talk about their mother. It touched him to know after all he had been through he still held such fond memories.
‘Was that really your mom’s?’ Tony asked without looking away from the monitors.
‘It was. She had one crafted for each of us; she would wear the relevant one to commemorate any achievements we made, and the days of our birth.’
‘Doesn’t bother you, Loki giving away something so sentimental?’
‘As he said, it is his to give, and Lady Maia is dear to him. She will take care of it.’
‘She’s something alright.’ He patted one of the techs on the shoulder. ‘Let me know when something happens.’
‘You mean if, sir?’ He glanced back at The Avenger.
Okay, there are currently two chapter five's and the numbering is not synced (18 and 19 don't say chapter on them!) but my browser is crashing whenever I try and edit them! The second chapter 5 is, obviously, chapter 25. I will continue to keep trying to edit it!