Chapter 84 - Epilogue 12
Sigyn sat at the desk in Loki's, their, newly repaired room at the tower, the loading circle on her laptop moving in time to the purring ring as she waited for her parents to answer the call. They tried to speak at least once a month on schedule, more often by arrangement if they could, and this was the first chance she had to do so. To tell them about her change in circumstances. All of them. She wasn't nervous, well maybe a little; telling parents about a new relationship was always nerve wracking, let alone one that would firmly put her in the public eye, but not as nervous as Loki. He kept wandering in and out of the room, knowing she wanted to introduce him properly, once she had had a chance to soften the blow, so to speak. As much as she had reassured him they would be fine it still wasn't going to be an easy thing to explain, which was why Charles Xavier was waiting to be called in if necessary. They trusted him and his word, even if they doubted hers.
The call was answered and she was rewarded with a close up of her dad's shirt buttons as he took a seat, revealing her mom off to the side in another chair, smiling broadly at her.
'Hey, sweetie.' Her dad grinned as he got comfortable. 'How are you?'
'I'm good, how're you both?' She asked as she leant on the desk with her elbows, unable to keep the smile from her own lips.
'We're fine.' Her mom replied. 'Did you redecorate?'
She looked behind her automatically, having forgotten they knew her room at Xavier's so well. 'Oh! No, I moved. Actually a lot has changed. This might take a while.' She sighed, wondering how to start. She had laid awake most of the night wondering what she would say, until Loki realised and distracted her into blessed unconsciousness. But she wasn't nervous. No. Definitely not. 'I took another job in the city.'
'You're not at Xavier's?' Her dad said in surprise. She had been there for over ten years, not including her college years, and it was as much a home to her as theirs was.
'Nope. No more Xavier's. Charles recommended me for this other position and it's sort of spiralled.' She admitted, feeling like she was grossly under exaggerating.
'More teaching or counselling this time?' Her mom asked, leaning forward in her seat. They were always interested in what she was doing, but why wouldn't they be? She was their baby.
'Neither. Listen, I need you both to just hear me out, not jump to conclusions, and really not yell at me, because this is one hell of a story.'
Her dad frowned, his brows furrowing in concern. 'You're worrying me, sweetie. What did you move on to?'
'Erm,' she scratched her neck nervously, 'I kind of joined The Avengers.' They reacted pretty much as she expected. Her dad laughed and her mom repeated her words back to her in a slightly higher pitch. 'It's a lot more complicated than that. You're going to have to give me a chance to explain because it's pretty weird.'
'But Maia, The Avengers? You mean you're counselling at their tower, not you’re one of them, right?' Her mom laughed nervously.
'No, on the team. Which is why I need to explain.'
'Maia.' Her dad said sternly and she knew he was about to try and lecture her without all the facts, and she was pretty sure she knew what about. 'You aren't exactly in the same pay grade, shall we say, as Captain America, Tony Stark, not to mention they have Thor's maniacal brother working with them! This had better be some kind of joke.'
Of course Thor's "maniacal" brother chose that moment to walk back into the room and she waved him out again frantically. Thankfully he took the hint before he was in view of the camera. 'He's not maniacal.' She said defensively. 'He's actually really sweet.'
'What?' He laughed unfunnily. 'You've met him?'
She blushed. A lot. Her cheeks flamed and she knew they would see it. She bit her lip and gave them an apologetic smile. 'Yes?'
'She's crushing on him!' Her mom said in disbelief, assuming that was the reason for the blush.
'Not...crushing, not really. But that's another part of the reason you need to listen.’ She reminded them pointedly. They hadn't given her a chance to even start to explain yet. ‘The last few weeks have been pretty crazy, and I’m really not convinced you’ll believe it, but I have to try make you understand because my entire life has changed. Everything.’ She raised her hand and coated it in power, showing them the amber glow she had never had control over until recent days. Her mom gasped, her dad’s jaw dropped open, both bore wide eyes, and she continued to speak into their stunned silence. ‘Charles recommended me for a position at The Avengers Tower, helping Loki adjust to his new position. He’s helped me unlock my powers, which is a whole other story, but you’re going to have to get used to the idea he’s in my life.’ She said as she extinguished her hand again.
‘He’s in your life?’ Her dad repeated, his expression unimpressed. ‘You need to explain yourself, Maia.’
‘I don’t know if I can!’ She pushed the chair out and got up, walking back across the room before turning to face them again. ‘Charles will one-hundred percent back me up on this, so try not to freak out even more, but my powers are working because of Loki, because of what he’s…’ She growled in frustration and dropped back into her chair. ‘We’re an item, okay? A couple. And I know you’re going to bitch at me but just stow it for a minute because it’s going to get weirder.’
‘Weirder than you dating a genocidal maniac? Really? I don’t think we can imagine much weirder.’ Her dad said angrily and she shook her head.
‘How about the fact I’m his dead wife reincarnated? That weird enough for you, Dad?’ She realised she shouldn’t have been so blunt about two seconds before her dad cut her off, cancelled the call, hung up, whatever you want to call it. She closed her eyes as she sighed. She knew that the way to get him to listen was to not do exactly what she had done. He needed gentle coaxing, not things thrown in his face.
‘Not going well, sunbeam?’
‘Not going well, my prince.’ She turned in the chair to see him leaning against the doorway. ‘You been lurking in the hallway or in the room invisible?’
‘You know me so well.’ He came towards her with a small smile and knelt before her, taking both her hands in his. ‘You knew this wouldn’t be easy for them to hear, sweet, despite what you said. There is a lot of information for them to take in, least of all you and I.’
‘I want them to be happy for us, and to like you.’
‘I did try and enslave your planet.’ He reminded her.
‘Only once.’ She argued.
‘That was quite enough for most people.’ He leant up and kissed her softly. ‘It does little to endear me to the populace. You are perhaps the most forgiving person I have met thus far.’
‘I’m a sucker for a pretty face.’ She shrugged as her computer began to ring and he got to his feet to leave her again but she didn’t release his hand. ‘Stay?’
‘I don’t think that is such a good idea, princess.’ He shook his head.
‘I don’t care.’ She didn’t let him go and she reached over and answered the call. Now just her mom remained in the seat her dad had been in.
‘Maia, your dad…oh.’ She said as she realised he daughter wasn’t alone.
‘Mom, Loki; Loki, this is my mom.’
‘Mrs Tomson.’ Loki bowed his head respectfully. ‘It is an honour to make your acquaintance.’
‘You’re Loki.’ She stated, unsure what else to say.
‘Make a chair.’ Sigyn tugged on his hand and with a small sigh of resignation he created one to match her own before taking a seat. ‘Mom, I need you to understand, and maybe try explain to Dad. I know it doesn’t sound right, I really do, but I have Charles on standby ready to confirm everything is true, and I know you trust him. The reason my powers never worked right is because it’s not a mutation, it’s Asgardian sorcery. All those dreams I used to have when I was little, about being in battles with princes, they were past life memories, of Loki, and Thor, it was all true, and now I remember almost everything, I know who I was, and that was Sigyn, Loki’s wife.’
‘Goddess of Fidelity.’ Loki added. ‘Lady of Unyielding Gentleness.’
‘That’s enough.’ She squeezed his hand at her mom’s confused yet worried expression. ‘I can have Charles call you, if you want clarification, but it’s all true. Loki unlocked my powers for me, he’s helping me train them so I can be an Avenger. We’re living together and…’ she paused, knowing she might already have said too much. ‘And I know it’s sudden, and it’ll take some getting used to. And I know Dad’s mad, and it’s my fault, but talk to Charles, let him clear it up for you, and when you’re ready to talk about it, I’m here.’
‘Don’t hang up yet, love.’ Loki raised her hand and kissed her knuckles automatically. ‘I’ll be right back.’
She glanced at him as he left and her mom spoke again. ‘I don’t know what to say, honey. This is kind of a surprise.’
‘Tell me about it. I woke up to realise I was someone else.’ She sunk down in her seat. ‘Can you try convince Dad to listen to Charles? Even if he won’t listen to me? Charles has checked both our heads and he knows what’s gone on. He can probably put a better perspective on it than me.’
‘Have Charles call us.’ Her mom agreed. ‘If anyone can make your dad see sense it’ll be him.’
‘Thanks, Mom.’ She smiled but it was sad, and she was almost certain as soon as the call was over she would lock herself in the bathroom and have a cry. It certainly hadn’t gone the way she had hoped. ‘I know it’s a lot to take in, I’ve struggled with parts of it too, like you wouldn’t believe, but having Loki help me through it…’ she sighed, ‘you’ll like him, I promise you will.’
‘You’re a grown woman, we can’t ground you.’ She said lightly but there was seriousness to the words, as though they would if they could. ‘We’ll try understand.’
‘That’s all I ask.’ Sigyn glanced at the door as Loki came back through it, being followed by someone. ‘Steve?’ Sigyn frowned as he came into the room, Loki offering him the chair which he took with thanks.
‘Loki said you might want me to speak to your folks, set a few things straight?’ He glanced from her to the screen and nodded to her mom. ‘Ma’am. Steve Rogers, at your service.’
‘Uh…that’s Captain America.’ Her mom said without taking her eyes off him.
‘Yeah.’ Sigyn chuckled. ‘It is.’
Steve spent the next ten minutes explaining as best he could about the situation, how the team all now trusted Loki, the many things he had done for them, and for the second five minutes her dad returned, listening in disbelief as Captain America spoke animatedly about their daughter and how capable she was, what a difference she had made in a short space of time to the team, all the while Loki standing behind her with his hands on her shoulders, close but not distractingly so.
‘And if you need any further clarification from the team I’m sure I can arrange a meeting where we can ease your worries.’ Steve finished.
‘We’ll bear that in mind, thank you, Captain Rogers.’ Her dad said.
‘And I’ll get Charles to call you in a little bit.’ Sigyn added.
‘Thanks, sweetie.’ Her dad managed a small smile. ‘This wasn’t what we had in mind for you, you know that.’
‘Best laid plans.’ She shrugged. ‘If it helps I know you always wanted me to be happy, and Loki does make me happy.’
‘That’s what’s important.’ Her mom said before her dad could reply.
‘Thanks. I’ll speak to you soon? Maybe?’
‘We’ll talk after we’ve spoken to Charles.’ Her mom promised.
‘Okay.’ She nodded. ‘Speak to you soon.’ She kissed her fingertips and waved at them as she always did, then finished the call, her shoulders slumping.
‘You okay with how that went?’ Steve asked her, his face a mask of concern.
‘Really no.’ She sighed and got to her feet. ‘Excuse me, would you?’ She asked, and went and locked herself in the bathroom.
Loki left Sigyn in peace for a good ten minutes before making her a coffee and coming back to their room, knocking softly on the door, knowing she was there despite the silence.
‘Sig? Sunbeam?’ He asked quietly. ‘Can I come in? Or would you like to come out?’
‘No.’ Came the faint reply and he was not surprised.
There was a pause then the lock clicked and he took it as a sign, pushing down the handle with his free hand and opening the door, finding her sitting against the wall by the sink, her knees drawn up and eyes puffy. He didn’t say anything straight away, just passed her the cup he held and took a seat beside her.
‘That’s Tony’s special blend that he hides in the back of the freezer, in case you were wondering.’
She sipped it and smiled slightly. ‘It’s good.’
‘That’s why he hides it. At least I assume so. It could just be because he’s such a child.’
‘You’re all children. All men.’ She murmured into the cup.
‘I am assuming we are including your father in “all men”?’
She sighed and leant to the side until her head rested against his upper arm and shoulder. ‘Especially him.’
‘Oh, petal.’ He leant his cheek against her hair. ‘Do you think, if we are ever blessed with a daughter, that I will be any better? That any man who approaches her will reach my standard of what she deserves? I barely deserve you, yet here we are, and you cannot blame a father when his baby virtually brings home the enemy and expects acceptance with no real explanation.’
‘I tried to explain.’ She said defensively.
‘But it was never going to be straightforward.’ He reasoned. ‘You have, however, taken the first step, which will open the door further. And with Charles’ input they may be more understanding.’
‘And your idea to bring in Steve was pretty good.’ She moved and he raised his head, leaning closer to him until he closed the distance, allowing her to kiss him. ‘Thank you.’
‘Who better to support your claim than America’s own golden boy? If they suspect foul play of some kind then Steven is the least likely of us to be corrupted.’
‘True. Steve being caught lying when it mattered would be as likely as finding out he was HYDRA.’
Loki laughed. ‘Perhaps one of the most ridiculous notions I have ever heard.’ He bowed his head and kissed her again. ‘I do not wish to be the cause of troubles between you and your parents, buttercup, but I will fight for us, with every breath in my body.’
His words made another thought surface in her head, something she hadn’t considered, that her parents may never be okay with this, that they might not be able to accept Loki as part of her life, and when she spoke her voice was quiet and slow, as though each word were carefully constructed, deliberately thought through. ‘If they can’t accept you, accept us, even after they’ve spoken to Charles, I choose you, my prince.’
‘Your words mean more to me than you could ever know, love.’ He took her hand in his, lacing their fingers. ‘But you should not have to choose between me and your parents.’
‘But if I do,’ she sighed, ‘don’t get me wrong, I’ll feel awful, but what we have, what fate has brought us, we can’t squander it. We deserve this.’
‘Let us hope for the best.’ He raised her hand to his lips. ‘We can worry over the rest if it happens.’
She nodded, watching him as he kissed each of her knuckles in turn. ‘Would you like a daughter, or would you worry too much?’
‘Quite the subject change.’ He gave her a small smile. ‘If she were to be as much trouble as her mother, her taste in men as questionable, I do not doubt I will be grey prematurely, but any child we create will be the apple of my eye, the most loved being in the nine realms, along with its mother.’
‘I don’t have questionable taste in men.’ She nudged him. ‘I have wonderful taste.’
‘Merely stating what will be popular opinion.’
‘If Tony Stark can accept us then everyone else should be a breeze.’ She squeezed his hand.
‘He was rather stunned by our sudden betrothal.’ He reached across and wiped a thumb under her eye. ‘You have smudged your make up, darling girl.’
‘I’ll clean up.’
‘Drink your coffee first. Even if Charles has spoken with your parents making them wait may not be a bad thing. Give them a chance to mull it over somewhat.’
‘Make them stew, you mean?’ He shrugged dismissively in reply. ‘Okay.’
They sat together in complete silence as she drunk her coffee then he waited while she cleaned off her make up entirely. He didn’t like to say so but he loved when she was fresh faced. Admittedly she was still a little pink and puffy but the freckles he adored were more abundant without make up to hide them. By the time they went back out to the room she had a message from Charles on her phone, asking that she call him before she speak to her folks. She didn’t see that as a good sign.
Loki kissed her temple as she sat and turned to leave but she caught his hand, stopping him. ‘Please don’t go.’
‘Anything for you.’ He took the seat beside her, putting himself close enough that they could continue to hold hands.
She smiled sadly at him as she called Charles’ number, putting the phone on speaker on the desk in front of them.
‘Thank you for calling back, Sigyn.’ Charles said warmly in answer.
‘Hi, Charles. Loki’s on speaker with me, is that okay?’
‘Of course. Good afternoon to you, Loki.’
‘And you, Professor.’
‘I will get straight to the point. No doubt you want to know how it went with your parents?’
‘A little worried but yeah, please.’
‘Don’t be worried, they listened to the story and asked some informed questions. I think perhaps their initial reaction was out of surprise more than anything else.’
‘That’s something, I guess.’ She gave Loki a hopeful look.
‘They have also asked to meet with you both, here at the school.’
‘They want to meet Loki, in particular, and I suggested somewhere neutral. I thought here would be somewhere you would agree to.’
‘I appreciate it, thanks, Charles.’ She glanced at Loki. ‘That okay?’
‘It will be fine, I’m sure.’ He smiled at her encouragingly.
Sigyn sighed. She hoped it would be, she just wasn’t convinced.
Two days later Sigyn drove the two of them out to Westchester in a SHIELD SUV. Loki had never been to the school and he found the grounds and old building quite appealing. She parked out front and got out of the car, knowing they were deliberately early, and waited for Loki to come around to her side, slipping his hand into hers automatically. They were going to pack a few more of her things while they were here too. It was Jean Grey who met them just inside the doors with Scott Summers, who looked Loki over with suspicion. Loki was used to it and ignored it. Sigyn wasn’t and didn’t.
‘Just wipe that look off your face, Summers, before the wind changes and you stay like that.’ She warned him playfully as she and Jean broke their hug.
‘You always had interesting taste in men.’ He smiled at her before she hugged him.
‘I dated your brother once.’ She reminded him.
She punched him in the arm as they parted. She had missed them the last few weeks. ‘Loki, this is Jean Grey and Scott Summers. She’s a talented telepath, he’s a talented asshat.’ They shook hands, Loki nodding to each of them in turn. ‘Has Charles told you both the story?’
‘The great reincarnation romance? He has mentioned it.’ Jean grinned.
‘Just the teachers. He’s told your students you aren’t coming back and are joining The Avengers but not why. He wasn’t sure how much you wanted public.’
‘It’s all going public.’ She explained. ‘It’ll come out anyway but Darcy, one of the assistants, wants to make a website dedicated to us and our story.’
‘An entire website?’ Scott frowned.
‘Most of a website. She already has vines and the like of The Avengers doing weird and wonderful things, but she wants to share it and this way we don’t have to worry too much about everything being rumour.’
‘No one will truly believe it anyway, sunbeam.’ Loki reminded her. ‘This way people may debate with the facts all they wish.’
‘Is that my little Maia I hear?’
‘Hank!’ Sigyn said excitedly, turning to find her favourite debating partner coming towards her with a smile on his blue furry face. He picked her up and hugged her before putting her firmly back on her feet before more introductions were made.
‘Charles has asked that you go ahead to your room and he will be with you as soon as he is finished with the meeting he is in.’
‘Thanks.’ She turned back to Loki, holding her hand up. ‘Come on, Mischief, let’s go to my room.’
‘How can I refuse such an offer.’ He took her hand and let her lead him up the staircase.
‘We will definitely need a larger set of shelves.’ He commented as he took in all her books, from novels and plays to text books and references.
‘I can put some in storage.’ She offered as she packed a few things into a box from her bedside table.
‘You will do no such thing.’ He said, giving her a horrified look. ‘Midgardian storage is damp, cold and quite frankly too barbaric for such treasures.’ He curved his hands in the air in front of him and in seconds the books were gone. ‘Magical storage. Much more appropriate.’
‘Damn, do you have space for the whole room? Or at least that which I have to take?’
‘You could create your own vault, love.’ He smiled at her, sitting as she was on the simple double bed.
‘I never could before.’ She reminded him.
‘But you accessed my vault quite easily.’ He came and sat beside her. ‘Perhaps not now, when under pressure to do so, but it is something else we can experiment with.’
‘I’d like that.’
‘Until then of course,’ he waved his hands and everything in the room was suddenly empty; all her drawers, units, cleared, ‘we can experiment with other things.’
‘No funny business in the dorms.’ She smiled as he wrapped his arm around her waist and tugged her onto his lap.
‘Break the rules with me, Sig.’ He purred as he nuzzled at her neck. ‘Let’s make mischief.’
‘Why are you so hard to say no to?’ She groaned as he nipped at her skin.
‘I do so love it when you say yes.’ His hands tightened on her rear.
‘Not that I am any stranger to this sort of thing,’ Charles’ voice interrupted them and Sigyn tried to jump out of Loki’s lap in shock but he had such a tight grip on her all she succeeded in doing was flipping the pair of them so she was flat on her back with him on top of her.
Loki started laughing, he couldn’t help himself, it was so much like being caught as a youth again, and Sigyn’s panic only made matters worse as she pushed at him to get off her. ‘Good morning, Professor.’ He chuckled as he righted himself, enjoying the flush to her cheeks as she scrambled into a crosslegged position almost on the other side of the bed.
‘Good morning, Loki. I think you can call me Charles now, as we seem to keep meeting on such an intimate basis.’ Charles joined in his laughter. ‘Honestly, Maia, Sigyn, I have caught you in more compromising positions since you met Loki than in the last decade.’
‘There’s a reason for that.’ She muttered as she covered her face with her hands while Loki straightened his jacket before shaking Charles’ hand.
‘And I know a good many of them.’
‘Not that many.’ Loki assured him with a raised eyebrow. ‘Three hundred years worth is quiet a set of memories to relive and match.’
‘I’m going to die of exhaustion before that.’ She mumbled as she got off the bed and straightened her t-shirt.
‘Asgardian constitution, love. You’ll be fine.’
‘Can we not talk about this?’
‘I’m sorry, I have seen you blush many times, but never as much as you have lately.’ Charles smiled warmly.
‘She goes the most beautiful shade I have ever seen.’ Loki looked between them.
‘Okay, enough. How long until my folks get here?’
‘You must want to change the subject badly if that is your preferred distraction.’ Loki said apologetically before walking around the bed to stand before her.
‘You’re horrible to me.’ She poked him in the chest.
‘Out of love, sunbeam.’ He smiled. ‘The flush to your cheeks is adorable.’
‘You do it so damn easily.’ She complained as Charles came further into the room.
‘You have half an hour before your parents arrive.’ Charles answered her question. ‘I thought we may be best meeting in my office and,’ he glanced around, ‘as you seem to be packed already perhaps you would like to give Loki a tour?’
‘Above ground level only?’ She checked and Charles nodded.
‘For now. We can’t allow him to see all of our secrets on the first visit, can we?’ He smiled.
‘It would take me more than half an hour for that anyway.’ She slid her hand into Loki’s and looked up at him. ‘Come on, Chaos, let’s give you the two cent tour.
‘I’m sure it’s worth more than that, petal.’ He allowed her to pull him from the room.
‘I’ll see you in your office in a bit.’ She called back to Charles as they left.
Loki had to admire the craftsmanship of the old house, plenty of carved wood and paintings lined the walls and Sigyn pointed out certain features in hushed tones as class was still in session, the hallways silent.
‘This was my classroom.’ She whispered as they edged up to the door that stood part open, and she could just see Ororo Monroe at the front, speaking animatedly about the topic she had started before she left; Little Women, another of Sigyn’s favourite books, discussing the difference in ambitions between each of the March girls.
One of the students glanced up and spotted her, smiling broadly before nudging the boy beside him and soon the whisper of her name ran through the room until Ororo herself glanced at the door then beckoned her inside with a smile of her own.
‘Class, looks like we have a visitor. Oh, two.’ Her smile faltered slightly as Sigyn opened the door enough that she could step inside, meaning Ororo could see Loki beside her.
‘Just wait there a sec.’ Sigyn smiled at him as she stepped inside. ‘Hi, everyone.’ She waved but most of the kids were more interested in who she had left outside and soon his name was being whispered by the class as well and she sighed, pushed the door open and pulled him in by his sleeve. ‘Yes, this is Loki of Asgard, one of The Avengers.’ She glanced back to find his expression guarded but somewhat nervous.
One of the girls near to the back raised her hand and Sigyn smiled at her. ‘Yes, Emily?’
‘Professor X said you weren’t coming back.’ She pulled on her sleeve nervously as she lowered her hand.
‘Officially I’m not.’ Sigyn explained. ‘I have a meeting with the Professor and had to clear out my room. I’ll miss you all though.’
A boy raised his hand then, more confident in the light of his classmate breaking the ice, but didn’t wait to be asked. ‘Why are you with him?’ He said the last word as though it were a dirty word, one that left a bitter taste in his mouth.
‘Lance, change your tone. That’s not how we treat guests.’ Ororo pulled him up on it immediately but he continued to scowl at Loki.
‘Loki is,’ Sigyn sighed, ‘it’s complicated but will be public knowledge soon enough.’
‘He tried to take over the planet.’ The boy spat and Loki realised while he may be a student he was considerably on the large side, such as Thor was as they grew, broad and tall, but that didn’t stop Sigyn walking up to his desk confidently, completely nonplussed.
‘And the Professor has verified the story The Avengers released, that Loki was coerced into his actions.’ She said firmly. ‘If you accuse Loki of willingly partaking in events, Lance, you are calling the Professor a liar.’ He shifted uncomfortably under her gaze and Loki was impressed by how much respect her words seemed to command. He had not seen her fully in this capacity. ‘Is that what you meant?’
‘No, ma’am.’ He muttered reluctantly.
‘I’m sorry, I don’t think Loki heard your apology.’
‘Sorry.’ Lance said loudly, glancing up at the God in question.
‘None necessary, I quite understand.’ Loki replied diplomatically.
‘But accusations help no-one.’ Sigyn looked back at him. ‘You will all hear a lot of things over the next few weeks, about me and Loki, and the truth is very complicated, but no more complicated than having a teacher who can teleport.’ She walked to the front of the class where she and Ororo hugged briefly. ‘If you want to do some research then there will be official documentation online in due course, but if you want my side, our side,’ she beckoned Loki to her, ‘it’s something you’re going to have to take on trust for now, but you’re all old enough to make your own, informed decisions, if you want to hear it. If you don’t mind, Miss Monroe?’
‘Not at all.’ She smiled.
There was a general murmuring through the class of the positive kind and Ororo offered Loki a chair, which Sigyn encouraged him to take as she sat on the desk as she often did when teaching.
‘You all know that I have powers that I can’t use?’ She knew that was the line the school had always given, leaving it to the individual as to what they believed. ‘It turns out there was a really good reason for that, but you have to let me give you a little background. When I was young, I mean really young, just a kid, I had really vivid dreams where I was fighting mythical monsters with heroic princes, using magic and sword, and they were…amazing.’ She said animatedly and Loki smiled to himself. She was a delight to watch. ‘But then I reached my teens and, as a lot of you did, things changed.’ Loki noticed a lot of the pupils nodding their agreement, they knew what it was like, and as she hopped off the desk again and walked between the rows of desks she had their complete attention. ‘I started giving off powers in random bursts that left me unconscious. I couldn’t control it. Professor Xavier found me and brought me here, just like all of you. We tried for years to get my powers to behave…they wouldn’t.’ She laughed. ‘I lost count of how many times I passed out pretty quickly, and despite me being of no use as a mutant Professor X let me stay here and study, and then come back as a teacher once I finished college.’ One of the girls at the back of the class raised her hand slightly as she reached her and Sigyn gave her her full attention. ‘Sophie?’
‘Why did your powers do that? Does Professor X know?’
‘We do now.’ She nodded. ‘Good question, by the way.’ She patted the girl’s shoulder as she passed the girl she gained a proud smirk. ‘All we could put it down to before was that I lacked control, which is normal in the early days, Robert, put that gum away, but I never gained it, I could never stop my body shutting down whenever I used my powers, so we stopped trying.’ The boy who had been crinkling paper under his desk sat bolt upright when she caught him and handed her the gum as she held her hand out to him as she passed. Loki suppressed a laugh. She was such a natural with them. ‘A few weeks ago Professor X recommended me for a role at The Avengers Tower, being Loki’s guide to all things Earth. It was through this position that we met, obviously, but it soon became apparent something else was going on.’
Charles edged up to the door where he could hear Sigyn talking to the class, explaining what had happened between her and Loki in such a way that it was a matter of fact, and he beckoned her parents forward, as they had arrived early. They stood and watched as their little girl explained how they had discovered the truth behind her previous life, how Thor had known who she was from the moment he saw her, how Loki had helped her harness her powers once they realised what it was, offering a small display of what she was now capable of without breaking her speech; and finally how she and Loki had their second chance. She spoke so genuinely, obviously from the heart, her eyes drifting back to the man who would be her husband often, and his gaze never strayed from her, lovingly watching her every movement. It was so far from what they expected it surprised them, in a good way.
Sigyn took questions from the class, answering as best she could, even Loki replying to the few directed at him, his tone never becoming remotely harsh or disdainful as they would have expected. Finally they all seemed satisfied with what they had been told and Ororo dismissed the class.
‘I didn’t mean to disrupt your lesson.’ Sigyn apologised to Ororo as she came fully back to the front, Loki standing as she did.
‘I am very glad you did. I would not have been able to have explained your absence so succinctly, and I do not think the class were the only ones to appreciate such honesty.’ She nodded across the room to the door and Sigyn turned in time to see her parents come in followed by Charles, now that the class had finished leaving. She stepped back into Loki, his hand falling on her waist automatically as she watched them for their reaction, not knowing how much they had heard, or how much they believed, but when her mom stopped halfway across the room and opened her arms welcomingly Sigyn couldn’t stop her feet from taking her forward, didn’t want to try, and before she knew it she was in a tight hug with both her parents, each of them speaking softly about how sorry they were, how they were willing to try and accept these changes, and it was enough to make her well up, her throat constricting with so much positive emotion.
Ororo left the room and diverted her next class to the nearest exit; it was a nice day and they could take this one outside; Charles closed the door, allowing privacy for this moment and joined Loki at the desk, each of them waiting patiently. Eventually Sigyn released her folks, sliding her hands down their arms to take their hands and pulling them with her towards Loki.
‘Mom, Dad, this is Loki. Officially. You need to get used to him because he’s not going anywhere.’
Loki bowed his head and offered his hand, and to her surprise it was her dad who took it first. ‘You take care of her and we won’t have a problem.’
‘I intend on doing just that.’ Loki promised.
‘Told you.’ Sigyn smiled at him, despite the tears staining her cheeks.
‘You were correct, as always, sunbeam.’ He smiled at her before raising her mom’s hand to kiss her knuckles. ‘It is truly a great honour to meet the couple who brought my beautiful Sigyn back into the realms.’
‘Sigyn?’ Her dad looked at her curiously and she shrugged.
‘I like it.’
‘You’ll always be my little Maia.’ He said, wrapping an arm around her shoulders.