‘You are such a fucking asshole!’ Darcy punched Loki as soon as she stalked into the conference room, throwing her whole weight behind it so his head snapped sideways. ‘How could you do that to her?’ Nat grabbed Darcy’s arm and pulled her back and away from him, despite wanting to do the same herself.
‘How else was I supposed to keep her safe?’ Loki argued, his appearance normal once again from the illusion he had replaced once Tony left and called the meeting.
‘Tell her the truth, you shit!’ She yelled. He had already had the same argument from the rest of the team, who were trying to work out a way to trace the energy signature the portal had left, and so far were having no luck. ‘You don’t dump her and tell her you don’t love her after all you two have been through! You protect her, if you’re that worried, you defend her to your last breath! You don’t kick her out, you stupid douche!’
‘Darcy,’ Steve started and she glared at him so hard he actually leant back in his seat.
‘Don’t “Darcy” me, Steven Grant Rogers! You didn’t see her this morning. He,’ she swung her finger at Loki, ‘is lucky I don’t rip his balls off for this!’
‘This won’t help us find her, Darce.’ Nat said to her quietly. ‘But I promise you his balls if anything happens to her.’
Darcy scowled at Loki. ‘She’d better be okay, you…’
‘Okay, enough!’ Tony yelled. ‘It’s been almost four hours since she was grabbed and we are no closer to finding her. Thor’s off world doing his Asgard thing,’ he referred to the fact that Thor had left immediately for Asgard on the realisation of what had happened and he was coordinating what he could from there. He only had Sif and The Warriors Three at his disposal, unless he wanted to go to Odin and reveal that Sigyn was reborn, but he hoped it would be enough. Heimdall would try and seek her out but it was a long drawn out process, not knowing where to look. ‘And it’s up to us to do what we can. Darce, can you use your computer skills to help the analysts? It would help.’
‘Fine.’ She growled. ‘But you’re not off the hook!’
‘I’ll go with her.’ Nat offered, leading the angry ex-intern from the room.
‘We are not making any progress.’ Loki looked around the table of Avengers. Everyone had been called in, even Scott Lang, in the hope of a lead. Tony considered Sigyn one of their own now and she would be treated as such.
‘As soon as we have a lead we’ll use it.’ Steve assured him.
‘And in the meantime she is suffering who knows what at the hands of whatever this mysterious magic user is!’ Loki said angrily, but it was at himself, not at the group. He was a fool to think he could protect her by turning her away. His arms were the safest place in all the nine realms for her.
‘We have the entire globe being scanned for reports of a portal opening, Xavier is utilising his resources worldwide, we have everything and everyone we can looking for her. We’ll find her.’ Tony tried to convince him but he knew it was slim, unless the power made another appearance.
‘And in the meantime?’
‘We be ready.’
Loki all but threw himself in the chair, growling as he did so. He had never felt so damn useless in his life.
Sigyn didn’t have long to wait, it was perhaps half an hour before she heard a lock thrown and the door start to open. She got off the bed as far from the door as she could, swallowing as her stomach turned in fear.
Loki came through the door, clad in black armour, stopping when he saw she was awake, his expression slipping into a smile that looked wrong.
‘I’m glad to see you’re awake, love.’ He said as he removed his gloves.
‘You have a nerve.’ She scowled as he came towards her and she moved as far from the bed as she could.
‘Always have.’ He shrugged.
‘Stay where you are.’ She told him warningly and he did stop, tilting his head to one side and regarding her curiously.
‘Not liking the shackles, beloved? Thought they’d be something you’d appreciate.’
‘If you want me to strangle the life out of you with them, then yeah. But leave the key out for when I’m done.’
‘Have I upset you?’ He narrowed his eyes as though he was trying to work it out and she gave him a surprised look.
‘Upset me? No. I’m way beyond upset.’
‘Hmm.’ He said thoughtfully before going to the fire and throwing on another log. ‘What did I do?’
‘If you don’t remember I’m not…’ She paused. His hair was shorter, his face younger. She rolled her eyes and sighed. Of course this wasn’t him. She had even had the dream to warn her about it. She glanced at the mirror in the corner, it looked normal enough, and the way she felt right now he could stay in the damn mirror if he got stuck in it, but still. This wasn’t him. She turned back as he faced her again, a small smile on his lips as he looked her over.
‘You were saying?’ He asked as he went to one of the cabinets and opened a drawer.
She shook her head. ‘Just that silly fight we had earlier. I shouldn’t hold a grudge, I guess.’
‘It’s not worth it.’ He brought her a red dress from the cabinet and she resisted the urge to back up, not wanting to be near the bed with Not-Loki. ‘Get changed, sweet. That Midgardian garb is ridiculous.’
‘How am I meant to do that with the shackle?’ She shook her wrist, jangling the chains.
‘Strapless.’ He drew a knife and fear spiked in her breast as he came towards her. He took hold of the chain and raised her arm, putting the blade under her sleeve and slitting the blouse up to her neck so she could remove it, then slicing her bra strap. ‘You won’t need the under garments either.’
‘How very thoughtful.’ She took the fabric from him. ‘You could just remove this.’ She shook the manacle again.
‘This way I know where you are.’ He went to the table and sat in the chair facing her.
‘You’re just going to watch?’
‘You can’t be shy?’ He said in amusement.
She shrugged and walked around the bed to the far side, shaking out the material until she worked out which way it went. The top was a boned corset, the skirt full, and it would clash with her hair. Her Loki, or the real one as he wasn’t really hers anymore, wouldn't have made that mistake. She stepped into the material without removing any clothes then held it to her chest while she unbuttoned the blouse, slipping it off then the bra, before turning enough to fasten the side zip without flashing whoever the hell this was before removing her skirt with her back to the room. ‘What about shoes?’ She asked as she threw the skirt with the blouse while he came towards her.
‘You won’t need any.’ He said, picking the clothes up and throwing them in the fire, much to her annoyance. Sure, the blouse was ruined but she had liked the skirt.
‘Did you burn them too?’ She asked as he came towards her and her pulse picked up with fear. She didn’t want him near her but other than clambering over the bed she didn’t have a lot of options open.
‘They were not befitting someone as beautiful as you.’
‘They were comfortable.’ She argued as she made herself stand her ground.
He shrugged. ‘It matters not. What matters is that my beautiful wife has been returned to me, and we shall live out our days together here with no distractions.’
‘Just one problem with that.’ She placed her hand on his chest as he reached her. ‘You’re not Loki.’
His smiled faltered, the hand he had been raising to caress her cheek freezing in the air. ‘Perceptive.’ His hand finished its path but she leant away, stepping to the side and back away from him. ‘But not smart.’ He closed the distance between them and grabbed a fistful of her hair, holding her still. He leant towards her as she pushed at him but then he froze, tilting his head as he seemed to hear something she couldn’t and he released her, walking away and to the door. ‘I’ll be back, love.’ He said before leaving, locking the door behind him.