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Arturo is a 29-year-old male polar bear currently living in Argentina’s Mendoza Zoo. He is suffering in 40C (104F) heat in an enclosure that has just 20 inches of water for him to swim in and has as a consequence been displaying worrying behavior.

Please sign this petition or at least spread the word in order to have Arturo transferred to a zoo in Canada which has better facilities for an animal that is used to polar conditions.

sign this or die

SIGN THIS PLEASE, WE CAN DO SOMETHING FOR THIS BEAR SIGNING THIS!!!

This is embarrassing but it’s true. The problem is that now he is so ill that he probably wouldn’t survive a trip to Canada. If he stays here he would die anyway so sign this please!! We must try at least!

Winter’s Victim Chapter 79 (Last Chapter)

The next day, she awoke, with hope in heart, and listened. But she heard nothing. She sighed and turned over to face Loki sleeping next to her. She was so happy to have him back; she could barley stop herself from reaching out and touching his cheek softly. She ran her fingertips over his skin, letting her feather touch wake him. He moaned softly and then smiled, realising that this is how he would be woken today. 

“Morning.” she whispered to him, running her fingertips over his lips softly.

“Good morning.” he said, opening his sleepy eyes and looking at her. 
She smiled at his perfect blue eyes, remembering the day that they were white, and felt grateful they healed, and ran her fingers through his hair.

“It’s still not raining.” She whispered to him, laying her head back down on her pillow.

“It’ll take time. But I can feel the humidity rising, even just a little.” He whispered to her.

“We can’t stop making ice till it rains.” She whispered.

“Yes.” he confirmed.

“But we can’t do that every day. It’ll kill you.” She said, reaching out and laying her hand on his cheek.

“Immortal, remember?” he smirked at her.

“Immortal, not indestructible.” She made clear her thinking. 
“To get you back, just to have you die doing this for me, it would kill me.” she said, caressing his cheek softly. 

“I’ll be fine. I always manage with the pains that come my way.” He smiled.
That made her feel very guilty. Knowing that he might be in pain, bringing life to her realm. And it showed, in her eyes, as she dropped them from his gaze. But he wouldn’t have it.

“Hey.” He said, and she looked up at him.
“None of that. This is my home now too. Your people, my people. And I will do the kingly thing and do what’s right for them. And for my queen, and my prince and princess.” He said, telling her the real reason, without really saying it, why he wanted to work so hard to make Muspelheim a better place. 

“You would have made a good king.” She said, caressing his cheek again. 
He smirked and frowned. He had heard that he was born to a king, and he now understood why, being the crown prince of Jötunheim, but he had never heard anyone say he would have made a good king. 

“I’m not sure they would agree with you.” He said, dropping his gaze from her this time.

“Well, they are a land of monsters and dumb, inbred pets.” She joked with him and he let out a little chuckle.

“We’re not all bad.” He said, looking up at her sceptical face.

“They, are all bad. You, on the other hand, I don’t class you among them. Never have.” She said, as he began to play with a lock of her hair.

“Not even when you were the Ice Queen herself about, oh, four months ago.” He asked, referring to when he was trying to seduce her when he didn’t have his memories back yet. 

“No. I just had to protect what was mine.” She said, reaching out and touching his chest above his heart.
“I feared that if you remembered what you had done, what I had done, what Thor and Odin had done, you would hate us all. And then all those years of pain and longing would have been for naught.” She sighed.

“I feared it would have put you back on the warpath. The road to Ragnarök.” She stopped and looked up at him as he listened to her. 
“But I was wrong. To keep those memories from you, the kids, everything. I was scared. I didn’t want to lose you, so keeping you away from Ragnarök, meant you would still exist. Out there somewhere, but alive. I could never live, knowing you were dead.” She admitted her deepest, darkest fear to him.

“You could.” He said, reaching down and taking hold of her hand that was on his chest.
“You’re strong. Far stronger in mind that you know.” He said, playing with her fingers.
“But you have no reason to fear. All I wanted was to get out from under Thor’s shadow. And I’ve done that.” He smiled peacefully and she smiled widely. This is what she always wanted.
“Mission accomplished.” He added.
“I have a realm to rule, side by side with you, children that love me, and most of all, I have inner peace.” He added, sitting up and watching her as she took in the moment. Her dream had been realised, now all they had to do, was wait for the rain. Then everything would be okay. 

He got up and walked over to the flagon of water and held out his hand. He created a few ice blocks and dropped it into the flagon, and then a few into the two goblets at it side. He poured them each a goblet of water and gave one to her. She sat back and watched him, as things resumed as if they were in his, their, palace in Asgard. 
He walked round the bed again and sat down. He snuggled up to her and she to him, before they peacefully drank their cooling water, holding hands.

Over the course of the next week, they went back to the lake twice, topping it up with ice every time, and melting it just as soon. They noticed that the humidity seemed to increase more and more with every casting, and pretty soon, it was swelteringly humid, and the lake was full. Vara and Loki stood at the edge of the new lake, the water lapping at their feet. 

“Not long now.” Loki said, looking out over the lake, and the water evaporating off the surface as they watched.

The next morning, Vara awoke to shaking. Her eyes shot open and Loki was standing over her, smiling and shaking her awake.

“Vara, get up, quickly.” Loki yelled at her, under his breath.
She sprung awake. This was exactly what she was dreading. A riot caused from her people being scared and confused. She didn’t even have enough state of mind to open her ears and keep quiet.

“How many?” she asked, running to her staff in the corner of the room.

“Come again?” he asked, clearly confused. 

“The rioters. How many?” she asked, grabbing her staff and running out the door, and beginning to run down the steps. 

Loki rushed after her and grabbed her arm. She turned to look at him. Was it so dangerous that he wanted her gone? And where was Isa, had they attacked Eldur already? Oh no, was he dead. Was their son dead? Her mind was going a million miles an hour, and in seven different directions. 

“No, there are no rioters.” Loki said, smiling at her. 
She was just about to ask him about why he woke her the way he did when he answered her unasked question.
“Listen.” He said, reaching up and touching his ear.
She stopped, and breathed in deeply, the strangely earthy smell, hearing nothing but her heartbeat, and then she heard it. 

Rain.

A broad smile broke over her lips, and she rushed down the steps, running out into the throne room, heading for the door. But Loki stopped her once again. She looked to him and frowned. 

“With all the ash in the air, it might be dangerous. It could burn your skin.” Loki said, looking out into the storm. 

“I’ll be damned if I’m not going to dance in the first rain shower on Muspelheim of all time.” she said to him. 
He sighed at her stubbornness and let go of her hand.

“Okay, but let me go first. I’ll tell you if it’s safe.” He said, walking out into the rain in nothing but his armour under garments. 
He held out his hands and cupped them, letting water fill it. He then turned and smiled at her, water running down his curls.
“It’s okay.” He said, holding out his hand to her. 
“May I have this dance?” he smiled at her.

She jumped a little in excitement, dropped her staff that clanged on the stone floor, and ran out to him, leaping into his arms as he swung her around in the pouring rain.
They laughed and cried, and rejoiced. Life would soon flourish in Muspelheim. And it was all thanks to Loki.

“But there is one more problem we need to deal with.” Loki said, as he set her down on the ground and they began slow dancing in the rain. 
She looked out towards Eldur’s palace and there he was, standing on his balcony. He looked to them dancing and inclined his head to them. Vara waved to him and he carried on, being magnificent, taking in the first rain. 

“We’ll find a way to make him humanoid.” She said to Loki. 
He shook his head. He had already thought of a way, he just needed to find a gem big enough to hold that amount of magic. 

“Eldur, no, that’s no problem. I have a way.” He said, looking down at her. 
She looked up at him and frowned.

“What’s the other problem?” she asked him. 

“The Chitauri. They are most likely still looking for me. They wouldn’t have dreamt about attacking Asgard, but now that this realm is going to start cooling down, they might be brave enough to come here.” he explained to her and she stopped dancing. 

“Then there’s only one solution.” She said, looking up at him as water ran down his face and off the tip of his nose.
“I need to start getting my army ready for them. Trained up. New gear, new weapons.” She began to think.

“An education would help too. There is no substitution to intelligence.” He said, looking at her and she nodded.

“In fact, all my people could do with an education. It’s time for us to come out into the light.” She smiled at him. 

“I love you.” She said and smiled up at him.
He smiled peacefully.

“I love you too.” He said, saying the words he almost didn’t get a chance to say, once upon a time.

Winter’s Victim Chapter 78

“I’m not entirely sure this book is for little ears.” Loki said, reading the lines in advance before saying them out loud.

“Oh come on daddy, it’s my favourite part.” She whined next to him.

“The part where Thor breaks the bar-counter in a drunken stupor and sends everyone to the infirmary. Why?” he asked her, closing the book while she wasn’t looking. 
He knew exactly why Thor broke the counter; he was looking for Loki, who had just married Sigyn. Thor felt it was his place to dispense justice for the death of her true husband. 

“Uncle Thor is so funny.” She giggled and he smiled.

“Yes, he can be very funny.” Loki said, setting the book down on the bed next to her. 
She knee walked over to the book and opened it and began looking at the pictures as she paged through the story of Loki’s life on Asgardia. He never imagined his daughter would be reading about his misadventures. Then he heard the flapping of wings. Vara must have talked some sense into Eldur.

“Isa, listen…” he said, gesturing to his ear. She stopped what she was doing, and listened, and then she smiled, just as Eldur’s huge head poked into her balcony door.

“Hello princess.” Eldur smiled happily to his sister. 

“ELDUR!” she jumped up and ran to him, hugging him tightly on the nose. Vara jumped off his neck and onto the balcony, and walked up to Loki.

“It’s as we feared.” Vara said simply to him and he nodded. They had spoken in length about this day in the last week. Loki had already been thinking of a solution for his son, he just needed to speed up his thinking. 

“I’ll start thinking about the logistics of it.” he said, seeing Isa clamber up onto her brother’s face and down his neck.

“I’ll worry about the logistics; you just find a way to make our son humanoid.” She whispered to him, taking hold of his hand. 
“Come, we’re taking a family trip.” Vara said, leading him to Eldur. Vara jumped up onto the Eldur’s back, followed shortly by Loki. And then they took off, heading out towards the west of the palace.


“This is it, it should be deep enough to get everything kick-started.” Vara said, as they flew over a deep gorge that was so remote, it wasn’t even named yet. 

“Yes, it will work, but what about that village?” Loki asked her, pointing to a small village on the other side of the deep gorge. 

“When we have filled it with water, we’ll come over, and get them. Then we can start living a brighter future.” Vara nodded, looking to the deep gorge. The lava was sure to be near the surface, and it would melt the ice sufficiently. 
“Eldur, anywhere you can land, please do.” Vara called to him and he nodded, banking gently and landing on the edge of the gorge. 
They all dismounted, Isa jumping into Loki’s arms when he was on the ground.  They walked to edge of the gorge and looked into it.

“It’s going to hold a lot of water.” Loki warned her, that it might take some time to fill it.

“Good, we need it.” Vara said, looking around.

“What exactly are you two planning?” Eldur asked his parents. Vara smiled at Loki and they turned to explain it to them. 

“When I tried to invade Midgard, I noticed they had so much water on their planet, lying, on the ground, just like that. Forming huge oceans and lakes. And a few days ago, in Asgard, I realised what we needed to make our realm independent from Asgard. Able to sustain our own people, and maybe even help other realms.” Vara smiled at her two soon to be Ice Masters. 

“Water. We need water.” Loki finished her sentence. 

“Ice, melts into water, when exposed to heat.” Vara smiled.
“And we have plenty of heat.” Vara said, looking to Loki.

“I know it will be while still till you two can cast huge pieces of ice, and I will teach you all I know. But for now, I will begin creating glaciers for the lake.” Loki smiled.

“Lake, you’re going to make a lake here?” Eldur said, pointing into the deep gorge. They nodded and he smiled. There were some things to worry about, but all that could be fixed later. This plan was sure to work.

“And you two get to name it.” Vara gave them the privilege of naming the first lake in Muspelheim. Eldur looked to Isa and smiled.

“What ever Isa wants.” He said to her. She smiled widely at her mother and ran to the edge of the gorge.

“CRYSTAL LAKE!” she shouted out over the edge and it echoed off the walls of the gorge.

“Crystal Lake. Okay then. Let’s get started, shall we?” Loki said, leading Vara off away from the edge.

“Isa, come here, let your father do this.” Vara called to her daughter and she swiftly walked over to her mother.

“I’m going to whip up a storm, bring the temperature down a bit, and then I’ll start with the ice.” He explained to them, beginning to weave a storm with his blue magic. 

“And as soon as you stop, I’ll bring up the temperature of the ground, as soon as you and the kids are clear.” Vara smiled at him, seeing dark clouds forming above them, thicker than normal. 
Then a wind kicked up, bringing with it dark volcanic dust, blinding all who were uncovered. Eldur reached out with his wing, and wrapped it around Vara and Isa, protecting them from the sharp little shards. He tucked his head in under his wing as well, protecting himself. As they stood there, they could feel the temperature dropping and dropping, until the wind stopped. Eldur shook off the dust and opened his wings, and they all saw Loki beginning to weave a spell to create a massive glacier. Vara stepped up beside him to see the bottom of the gorge filling with at first a thin layer of ice, before being thickened more and more with every passing moment. She smiled as she saw the ice begin to take colour, a sign that it was becoming thicker yet. 

“Come look here.” Vara gestured to Isa and Eldur, and they stepped up beside her seeing the ice forming. 
Isa then held out her hand and made a tiny little ice spire. She grabbed it and threw it into the gorge, sending it clanging against the rock before pinging on the ice below. 

“That’s it, every little bit helps.” Loki smiled at her, continuing to weave his spell. 
Eldur began doing the same, although his ice spires were more like spears. They continued to throw them down into the gorge, which was rapidly filling with clear blue ice. Vara watched as her ice masters, began to take up their posts, without even knowing they existed. 

Soon the ice crept up to meet their feet at the edge and Loki stepped back, followed by Isa and Eldur. Then he stopped suddenly, sweat dripping from his brow. He faltered back and Vara rushed up behind him, catching him and laying him on the ground. He had warned her this might happen, but she never expected him to lose his footing.

“Are you okay?” she asked, slightly panicked, wiping the sweat from his brow and cheeks.

“It’s been a while since I did such a labour intensive spell.” He smirked at her. She sighed, and looked to Isa and Eldur. 

“Take him home, and then come back for me.” she asked Eldur as they neared.

“I’m not leaving you out here.” Eldur said, as Isa climbed up onto his neck.

“It’s my realm, what can they do to me?” she said, looking out to the village out on the edge of the glacier. 
She picked Loki up and Eldur lay down on his belly. She placed him in between two neck spikes and pulled a leather lash out of her bag. She tied Loki to the spikes and he looked at her.

“That’s not necessary, I’m fine.” he said, grasping her staff from her bag and handing it to her. He didn’t know when she had gotten it, but it was there.

“When I get home, I expect you to be in bed.” She said, not really letting her mind drift to dirtiness, but his clearly did.

“As you command my lady.” He said, winking at her. Eldur rolled his eyes and Isa was too young to understand, just yet.

“Now Eldur remember the air is still cold, so you need to put in more effort to get the same amount of height.” She lectured him on physics but he was having none of it.

“I’m not six months old mom.” He said, as she stepped back. 
He flapped his massive blue wings and took off, heading back home. 

As soon as Vara could see that they were clear, she turned to the glacier. She took her staff up in her right hand and tipped the end with the diamond in, to the ground, touching it lovingly. She then closed her eyes and began to concentrate, just as Loki had taught her, so long ago. At first, there was only a little tremor, but pretty soon, the ground began to glow bright red, the lava running just below the surface. She didn’t want it to break through the top crust, for fear of making the lake gorge smaller. Soon the glacier started to shrink, a vast pool of water forming at the bottom. The ice began to crack and slip on the wet surface, only adding haste to it’s melting. 
After a few minutes, she stopped, and lifted the staff off the ground. The glacier had shrunk and now filled only half the gorge. She didn’t care. There were tens of thousands of litres of water here. She stepped over the edge of the gorge and made her way down to the water’s edge. She found a ledge and sat down, wiping the sweat from her brow. She took off her shoes and reached out with her toes, the tips just touching the icy cold water. She sighed, and inched closer, letting the water engulf her feet.  

“The age of anguish is over.” She whispered to herself, leaning back, and just relaxing. 

After a while, Eldur showed up, landing up on the edge of the lake. Vara pulled her feet out of the lake, and put on her shoes. She made her way back up to him and they went home. It would take another session like this to fill up the lake, but that was for another day. Now they hoped their plan to kick-start the atmospheric cycle would actually happen. 

When they arrived back home, Eldur dropped Vara off on her balcony, bid her goodnight, and went off home. Isa was being read to by Astrid, and would soon be asleep. Vara walked into their room, seeing Loki just drifting off, sleeping under the sheets, shirtless. It was sight to behold. She walked around to his side and sat down. He opened his eyes and smiled at her.

“Darling.” He whispered to her, reaching out for her. She reached up and took hold of his hand, caressing it in her own. 

“Thank you.” She whispered to him, bringing his hand up to her lips and kissing his fingers tenderly.

“I just hope it works.” He whispered, seeing the colour was missing from her face. She usually had a blush after flying. 

“Come my love.” he said, shifting over and lifting the sheet. 
She stood up and got undressed while he poured her a goblet of water from the rations. It wasn’t as cool as the lake water, but he could fix that. He sat up in bed and put his hand around the goblet as she sat down. She saw him beginning to use his magic again.

“No Loki, please don’t tire yourself out again for me.” she whispered to him, putting her hand on his. 

“What good is my magic, if I can’t even give my wife a cool drink of water?” he said, before handing the goblet. 
The water was ice cold and she smiled, before putting her lips to the edge, drinking deeply, without stopping. She finished the goblet and set it down on their bedside table and he moved the sheet again. She climbed in next to him and he held her tightly, letting his coolness tame her heat. They fell asleep, without saying another word. Now all they could do was pray.

Winter’s Victim Chapter 77

After a week of rekindling their relationship, Vara and Loki met the children, Odin, Frigga, and Thor at the observatory.
Loki warped them in, as usual, when everyone had arrived. Vara smiled at him and planted a kiss on his lips as they walked towards the family. 

“Brother, sister.” Thor smiled at them, knowing exactly why they had been absent for the past week.

“Brother.” Loki smiled peacefully and held Vara closely around her waist. 

“Ready to go home?” Vara asked Isa and Eldur, with an evident glow about her. 
Isa smiled up at her and nodded. Vara noticed she had a green rucksack with something in it. She guessed that it was gifts from her grandparents and her uncle. Eldur too, had a large bag, clutched in his claws, but something seemed off about him. He was laying off to one side, not really participating in the farewell.

“So, brother, may I leave with my family?” Loki asked him and he reached out, putting his heavy hand on Loki’s shoulder.

“You may.” Thor smiled at him, and Frigga walked out from behind Thor.

“There’s something else as well.” She smiled at Loki and Vara both. 
Vara frowned and looked to Loki, who was just as confused with that statement. 

“Yes, I have decided to lift my rule on your permanent living situation.” Thor smiled at Loki. 
He knew exactly what that meant. Loki smiled wider than Vara had ever seen him smile.

“I can live in Muspelheim, permanently?” Loki thought out loud, hoping he was right.
Thor nodded. But Vara felt something coming on. Like this had conditions attached to it. Thor’s rules always had conditions.

“He’s not being exiled, is he?” Vara asked and Thor looked to her.

“No.” Thor chuckled. 
“He is welcome to come back when ever he wishes, as are all of you. All you need do is call upon Heimdallr.” Thor smiled widely. 
Vara didn’t know why he was in such a good mood, but she wasn’t going to argue with him. It was good news all round.

“Thank you. I only have one more thing to ask you, Thor.” Vara asked him. 
Thor nodded, and waited for her ask her ‘one more thing’. 

“With the next rations, could you include some seeds from the crops in season at that time?” she asked him. He frowned, but nodded.

“What for?” Odin asked him, now curious himself.

“I had a realisation while I was here, and I plan to implement it, and get my people back on their feet. So in the future, we can stop the rations altogether, and begin to live the life my father should have implemented for my people.” She said, looking to Loki. 
He smiled at her, he knew her plan exactly, and was planning on helping her any way he could. Muspelheim was his home now too, after all. Odin nodded, and Vara guessed he had already figured it out, or he wanted to keep it as a surprise. Either way, she now had a plan.

“So long as Ragnarök doesn’t come.” Thor turned serious suddenly.

“It won’t.” Vara said quickly quelling his fears. 
“Consider Muspelheim a loyal and honest friend to Asgard. Anything you need, we will be happy to oblige.” Vara smiled at him and his happy demeanour returned. 

“If everything goes as well as I hope, I will return your mother’s sword to you.” Thor gave her a little bit more good news and she smiled.

“Whenever you feel ready.” Vara said, leaning in and hugging him.
“We must really go now; I have to try out my new plan. It’s been eating at me.” Vara said, letting go of Thor and making her rounds with the others. 
She took hold of Isa’s hand and waved to the others as they walked into the observatory and towards Heimdallr and Eldur, who was waiting. Vara would ask him later what was wrong, or better yet, he would ask Loki to ask him. He guessed he wanted a few bonding sessions with his father. 

Heimdallr opened the disc and the light pulled them back down to Muspelheim and they landed in the dusty Bifrost site. Eldur began walking off to his palace, without saying anything. Vara frowned and looked to Loki, who nodded.

“I’ll do it, the bonding can wait for now.” Vara said, kissing Loki on the cheek before walking off after Eldur. Loki took Isa’s had that Vara had let go of and they walked off to the main palace, every now and then looking back at the massive blue dragon as his disappeared into his black palace. 

“Isa, did anything happen to Eldur I need to know about?” Loki asked his daughter. 
She shrugged and looked at her older brother’s tail as it slipped into his palace. 

“Two days ago, he went to go study with Odin, and when he came back, he was like that. He hasn’t said a word to me at all. Not even goodnight or good morning.” she moped. 
She was too young to understand that this wasn’t her fault, and that Odin had probably done something to anger Eldur, or hurt him. Loki had to cheer her up somehow.

“What do you have in that bag there?” Loki asked as the entered the throne room and turned left to go up the stairs to the living quarters of the palace. 

“Books, scrolls, things to read…” she began listing them off on her little white fingers. 
He loved watching her, this perfect little being brought to life from his and Vara’s longing for a child. 
“Oh, and some pretty things from grandma.” Isa jumped happily at his side as they reached the top landing.

“Grandma does make pretty things, doesn’t she?” Loki smiled, calling his mother a grandmother. 
Isa smiled and nodded as they walked down the hall towards Isa’s room.
“Why don’t you show me, maybe I can read to you.” Loki smiled at her and she beamed back at him. 
They went into her room and Loki helped her unpack her new things. Seeing all the things Frigga had made for her, made his heart glad. He finally had a normal family. One he had longed for.

“Here, here, begin with this one.” Isa said, grabbing a book from her bag and handing it to him. 
He looked at the red leather cover with silver writing on it and smiled. 

“The Story of the Vanishing Skyland, Asgardia.” He smiled, remembering running off to the very island in his youth, to get drunk and pick up girls. 

“It’s my favourite.” She smiled, sitting down on her bed.

“Yes, it’s mine too.” Loki said, sitting down beside her and opening the book in the front.


“Ok, out with it.” Vara said, stepping into Eldur’s entrance hall and following him up the steps to his room. 

“I don’t know what you mean.” he said, disappearing into his room. Vara followed him in; she wasn’t going to let him get away with this.

“You know exactly what I mean. What’s wrong? You didn’t even greet me or your father when we arrived.” Vara said, sitting down on a normal sized couch made for her. 
He turned and looked at her, and she could see nothing but anger in his eyes.

“Eldur?’ she asked, standing up and walking over to him. 
He then reached for his bag and undid the threads holding it closed. He then proceeded to dump all the books and scrolls in it onto the floor at Vara’s feet. She scanned through the covers, and they all had one thing in common, dragons. 

“All of them, I’ve read every one, front to back.” he said, flopping down on the floor with a thump. Vara bent down and picked one up.

“Some of these books are from Midgard. Eldur, did you steal these?” she asked, looking up at him.

“I asked Thor to go get them for me. I had to know. And Odin confirmed my fears.” He said, looking at Vara, with lava now running from his eyes.
“I’m the only dragon alive.” He said, looking at his mother.

“Not true, you have a half brother that’s a dragon.” She said, opening the book in her hands and looking at the first page. 

“Jörmungandr is a serpent, not a dragon. He has no wings.” Eldur pointed out.

“If you had read some of these Midgardian books, you would know that not all dragons have wings, or legs, or tails. Each one is different.” Vara said, closing the book.
“Some eat fish, others camels, some small ones eat rabbits. There are many different types of dragons in Midgardian myth.” She tried to ease his pain, what ever was causing it.

“I know, but now, I’m the only one.” he said, laying on his huge feet and moping.

“Yes, and so?” Vara asked him getting to the crux of his problem. 

“I was kind of hoping that one day, I could find a nice, white scaled dragoness with pink undertones, and that we could, well…” he stopped. 
She could see what he meant. He had no hope of ever finding a mate. Vara nodded, not very long ago, she felt the same, that she’d be stuck here, alone for her whole life. She had to inject a little lightness into this situation.

“Already have a type hey?” she smiled at him and she walked up to him. She saw him crack a little smile.
“I’ll talk to your father. He’s better at magic than me. He may know of a solution for you.” She comforted him and his smile grew wider.

“I hope so, the only solution is…” he said and she nodded. 
She knew this was coming, and she was glad Loki was here to help her and Eldur deal with it.

“To turn you into a mortal, or some form of one. Draconian, I think the humans call it.” she said, thinking back to her time on earth. 
“So stop moping, your sister thinks she did something wrong to make you mad.” Vara said to him and he picked up his head and looked at her.

“Did she tell you?” he asked and Vara shook her head.

“No, but I know my children. She’s hurt.” Vara said to him.

“Maybe I should take her flying. She likes that.” He said, looking to the big palace.

“Maybe we can take a family flight. I want to go looking for something. She can tag along for the fun.” Vara smiled at him and he smiled back.

“Let’s go.” He smiled his pearly grin.

Winter’s Victim Chapter 76

In the morning, they awoke to silence. No shouting or screaming of any sort. Just like they did back in the days before Eldur hatched. Vara woke first, as she always did and turned in Loki’s arms to see him sleeping in his Frost Giant form. She smiled sleepily and reached out and softly ran the tips on her fingers over his cuts. She wondered if this is what hers looked like when they were visible. She had never been angry and looking in a mirror at the same time. She smiled when she saw him move slightly, waking up. She propped herself up on one arm and watched him as he opened his eyes and looked at her with his red eyes.

“Morning.” she whispered to him, leaning in for a kiss, which he granted. 
He then faded back into his Asgardian form, not wanting to give her frost bite.

“Good morning, finally.” He added, turning and looking out the balcony at his back. 
“It’s a beautiful day, what do you want to do?” he asked, turning and looking back at her.

“Nothing.” She smiled. 
“For once, I want to do nothing.” She sighed and crept closer to him, cuddling up to his chest. 
She sighed in relief feeling his cool skin against hers.
It was nothing she had expected, but now, it felt like they were made for each other. Crafted from one piece of marble.
“Tell me what happened while I was gone.” She said softly to him. 

“Well, we rebuilt the Biforst, that I kinda broke, but didn’t, if you know what I mean.” He started, before kissing her on top of her head. 

“I do. Frigga and her magic.” Vara smiled, feeling his cold lips touch her skin.

“And then there was the Dark Elf invasion.” He sighed, remembering those dark times.
Vara leaned up and looked at him seriously.

“The what?” she asked, quickly checking him over for scars, but he didn’t have any new ones. 

“It’s a long story. Complicated.” He explained.

“We have time.” she smiled, cuddling back up to his chest.

“Well, where do I start?” Loki sighed and leaned back against the headboard looking up at the ceiling. 
“Kurse, snuck into Asgard, transformed in the cells, and well, went on a rampage through the palace.” He began to explain.

“Kurse, who’s Kurse?” she asked him, settling back in his arms.

“Malekith’s right hand bruiser, you could call him. He was a possessed creature of darkness.” Loki said, thinking back to that dark time, but also, it taught him things he needed to know. 
Things like how Thor really felt about him, and to what lengths even Loki would go to, to protect his family. 
“He killed my mother.” He said simply and Vara lifted herself off Loki’s chest and looked at him. 
Frigga was alive and well, how had the Asgardians managed that.
“And me.” he said, looking at her and catching her dulling red eyes.

“What, why didn’t Thor come to me, I would gladly have given him my army, to keep you safe.” She said, running her hand over his chest.

“I suppose he felt it was his place to defend Asgard, and he did. With the rage my and my mother’s death provided.” Loki smiled to himself. 
It was an ingenious plan to say the least. Giving Thor not only a reason to kill Malekith, but the rage to do it, it saved Asgard, and all the realms. He truly was a hero, for once. 

“But how…” she stopped, thinking how to word it.
“How are you and Frigga here, today, if you died?” she asked, looking him over again for scars, knowing he didn’t have any new ones. But there was a small, thin line of silver scar tissue that she had missed, on his chest, over his heart. The killing blow she guessed. She stared at it angrily, as if the scar itself had killed him. Was killing him, was going to kill him. In her mind, in her anger, that scar was the most dangerous enemy now. He caught her staring at it. He wondered how she had missed it, but then again, as a prince of Asgard, he was afforded the best care after the war.

“That’s another story entirely.” He smirked. 

“Go on.” She urged, breaking her stare down with his silver scar.

“I was never killed. My illusion was. I stood and watched from a distance as Thor mourned me, and disappeared into the cliffs of Svartalfheim with his mortal. They never came back out, I don’t know how they got back to Midgard, according to Thor.” he began to recall the story. 
He didn’t know how she would react to all this that was coming next. Smoke and mirrors was his game and she knew that, but to what extent?

“I came home, and pretended to be an Asgardian warrior, claiming Loki had been killed in Svartalfheim. Odin held an audience with me, long enough for me to send him somewhere where he wouldn’t interfere with my plans.” He said, not meeting her eyes till the very last moment. 
She stared at him incredulously. She had stopped herself from coming to him, and telling him the truth hoping he had followed the path of good and righteousness. It seemed it was all in vain. Loki was still Loki. Even when she wasn’t there to egg him on or to be his driving force. She lifted herself up off his chest and sat up in the bed, her back facing him. She curled her legs up to her chin and stared out into the blue.

“All these years. I hoped you’d be virtuous.” She said before looking over her shoulder.
“It seems it was time wasted.” She said sadly, looking away from him again. 
It was just a matter of time till he broke her heart again. Like he had on Midgard all those years ago, leaving her stranded in the hands of SHIELD and their excessive scientists. 

“I knew I had to get my mother back.” Loki said sitting up and moving over to Vara’s side vision. She couldn’t even bring herself to look at him as he explained.
“And there’s a book, in the royal library in the main palace. A book with a spell in could use to bring her back. To spare her my mistakes.” Loki quickly explained.
“I knew, Odin, or the guards, would never let me in there, unless I was Odin.” He explained. 
“I sent him on a vacation, while I brought back his wife and my mother.” He added, seeing her unchanging expression. 
He didn’t feel bad at all about what he did. And why should he. He saved his mother from the clutches of death itself, and Odin now loved him for that, and all was forgiven. So why was she still acting like he was evil.
“When he returned, he found his wife in his bed, his sons back to being brothers, and all was set right.” he added. 
He needed to keep talking. He needed to convince her he was good.

“I just thought…” Loki said but was stopped when Vara finally looked at him. 
He stopped, and her expression needed no other explanation. She was angry at him and hurt. But why? She then swiftly got out of bed and walked around to the balcony, where she stopped and stared out over the ocean. He sighed, grabbed a sheet from the bed and got out, before walking over to her and draping the sheet over her.

“Vara, I don’t understand, what’s going on?” he asked, tenderly, knowing better than to touch her right now.
She sighed and looked down and then he saw a tear fall to the golden floor.

“I longed everyday that you came down with the Bifrost, to tell you who you were, but I was afraid that if I did, that you would fall back into your mischievous ways.” She said, looking at him finally.
“But despite my bitten tongue, my aching heart, my hopeful mind, you did anyway.” She said, looking out over the water again.
“These last eleven years have been for nothing.” She said finally. 

“No.” he said, grabbing her by her shoulders and turning her to look at him.
“It gave me a reset, if you will. I am now, where I always should have been.” He said quickly.

“If not for your war on Midgard, I would never have met you, and I would have still been stuck in that dark hellhole alone, with no children, and no hope. Your, mischief, brought you to me, and brought me into the light. I was hoping that same light had found its way into your heart.” She explained to him, as another tear rolled down her cheek before she quickly wiped it away. 

“I still don’t understand. Mischief has always been my brand of entertainment. It’s nothing to be feared. Not by you anyway.” He explained that she would always be safe with him, and from his tricks. 

“But it doesn’t stop with mischief, does it? Not with you.” She said, looking away from him and then to him again.
“Before I can wipe my eyes out, I’ll be standing on Midgard again, reaching out for you as you warp away.” she said to him, her sadness now showing through her anger. Then he understood. All the anger she had suppressed when she first came to him in the dungeons after he left her on Earth, was coming out now. It was like poison and it had soured the moment.

“That’s what this is about. The Midgardian invasion.” He asked, letting go of her shoulders and stepping back.

“YOU LEFT ME THERE TO ROT!” she shouted at him suddenly and he was taken aback by her ferocity. 
This was like nothing before. Even her red cuts were clearly visible on her creamy skin. They slowly faded to thin red lines. 

“I know, I know, I’m sorry. But you know the reason. I tried to get back to you, you know I did. Just think my darling.” He tried to ease her tempest.

“YOUR MISCHIEF COST ME! HURT ME!” she shouted again before drawing back and leaning heavily on the rails in front of her. 
After a few deep breathes, she spoke calmly to him.
“We can never go back to that place Loki. That dark, tortuous place. You must never let that mischief become darkness. My heart won’t survive it.” she said, glancing at him over her shoulder. He nodded to her and walked up to her, placing his hand on her shoulder. She turned her head and looked at him.

“I will never hurt you. You are the mother of my children. The one that the fates have gifted to me. I will guard you with my life. As for your heart,” he said, turning her to look at him.
“I will protect it, as you have done for mine.” He whispered to her and before she could stop herself, all the tears she should have shed while she was missing him, flooded out. She pressed herself to his chest as he embraced her and he comforted her in her grief. 
“Anyway, that’s the highlights as to the past eleven years in my life.” he said, cracking a little joke and she giggled in between the tears.

“I’m sorry, I’m being completely irrational.” She said, lifting her head off his chest and wiping her tears away.

“I understand. It must have been hard, remembering everything, while I remembered nothing. And seeing me every month, it must have been torture.” He said, wiping the residual tears away as she eased out of crying. 

“No, just the opposite. Our conversations, our time that we spent together, no matter how short, gave me comfort.” She smiled up at him and he smiled back at her.
“And then you used you magic on me.” she fake pouted.
“You’ve never done that before. And I didn’t appreciate it. At all.” She went on faking.

“I know, but you know me and curiosity. There was this little girl, that you kept hidden from us, I just wondered what was wrong with her.” he said taking her hand and leading her back to the bed.

“I just couldn’t risk you seeing her eyes. You would’ve have known years ago if you did.” She said, willingly going with him.

“And that would have put you right in the middle of the Dark Elf invasion. Trust me, now that I know you were safe in Muspelheim, and away from here when they came, I’m glad you did that. I would not have made it if I had lost both my mother and you in one day.” he said, stopping at the edge of the bed.
“And as for my magic, I thought you’d find it amusing, a little glimmer in the darkness.” He smiled at her.

“I didn’t. And I never want you to use your magic on me again. You know I’m no match to you in the magical department.” She offered him one amendment to their wedding vows. 
But he wasn’t buying it. All he needed to do was convince her that magic could be fun, seductive. He smiled wickedly and dropped his eyes to the floor.

“Never again?” he asked her as she felt someone wrap his arms around her from behind. She jumped right into Loki’s arms and spun around, only to see another Loki standing there.  
“Wh… what…” she said looking over her shoulder at her Loki and then ahead of her again as the other Loki came closer and tenderly slipped his hands over her hips. 

“I’ve perfected my illusions.” Loki whispered into her ear and looked up at his double. 
“He can do everything I can.” He smiled, before biting her earlobe softly and pulling away gently.

“I don’t get it, so what?” she asked, calming slightly, but turning in his arms and turning her back on the other Loki.

“I want to try something new. If that’s acceptable to you?” he smiled, letting go of her and walking away to the seating in the room. He sat down and crossed his legs.
“Continue.” He waved his hand and the other Loki walked up behind her again, slipping his silky hands over her scarred body once again. 
She made to push his hands away, but the second she took them, it was Loki. His warmth, or lack there of, and silky skin, it was him. But it was confusing to her and she couldn’t get over the fact that he was sitting watching them. It felt like she was being unfaithful to him.

“Loki, no stop. I can’t.” she said, stepping away from the double and closer to him. He got up off the seat and walked up to her.

“It’s okay,” he said, turning her around to look at his double.
“See, it’s me. It’s a perfect copy. Not even you can tell the difference.” He said, easing her closer to his double. But she spun around and faced him.

“No, not like this…” she stopped. She didn’t know what game he was playing at, but she didn’t like it. 

“So you’re just going to sit there, and, watch?” she asked him and he smiled seductively. 

“For starters, yes.” he smiled.

“No, no. That’s just too weird.” She said, pulling away from him. 
She walked out onto the balcony and crossed her arms over her chest. What was her thinking? This wasn’t him. He had never suggested anything like this before. 
He looked at his double and he shrugged at Loki. He sighed and walked up to her and leaned onto the railing next to her, looking at her.

“Do you not find him attractive, is there a problem you see that I don’t with his form?” he asked her, looking over at his copy. 
There was nothing there to be seen.

“Yes, I do find him sexy, very sexy, just as I do you. And no, there’s nothing wrong with him. He’s perfect.” She said looking over at the real Loki as he turned back to look at her. 
“It’s just, with you watching. I can’t imagine it being him, you, I mean. Even if it looks like you.” She explained her grievances.

“Ah.” He said, turning his back to the railings and looking at his double as he stood silently in the room waiting for his next order. 
“It’s me watching that troubles you.” He said, looking back at her.

“What happened to you, you would never suggest something like this? This doesn’t even sound like you.” She said, turning and walking back into the room, waving away the illusion as he shimmered away in a glitter of green.
“Wait…” she thought suddenly. She turned and looked at him.
“It’s been eleven years that we’ve been apart. And I’ve told you what I’ve been doing, but you never told me what you were doing?” she asked, walking up to him.
“Or who, rather?” she corrected her statement, leading into her main idea. 
He had not plucked this from the sky, he would have used this somewhere before.
Now he understood. She thought that he had used this trick on some other woman. 
“Tell me, was it Sif? She never did like me.” she asked him again.

“Vara, my life has been as dry here as yours has been.” He said, walking up to her.
“There hasn’t been anyone else.” He soothed her with sweet words. 
He wasn’t lying. With his aching heart, and the minds of the Asgardians still remembering him as a bad guy, not even the bar wenches would have him. 

“Then why all this song and dance? Surly you know I would never agree to this. I would not sleep with Thor, why would I cheat on you with, you.” She said, looking at him, closing the distance between them.

“I…” he stumbled over his words. 
“I just wanted to please you. To the utmost.” He said, reaching of her hands and grasping them. They were hotter than normal; he guessed she had raised it unconsciously in her angered state. 

“But you already do.” She used her soft soothing voice. 
“I don’t need another you. One is quite enough.” She chuckled and he did too, a little. 

“I just wanted to try something we hadn’t before. To get the spark back.” he admitted and now she understood. She thought for a little while and sighed. 

“Okay, we can try.” She finally gave in. He looked up at her as if to ask her if she was sure and she nodded.
“But you don’t watch. I want you here, front and centre.” She said to him. 
He smiled but thought then about this double. What was he to do? 

“And the illusion?” he asked. 
She smiled and shrugged.
“What ever you want him to do. He is yours to command after all. But I do have one request.” She said, before leaning in and whispering to him. 
He heard her proposition and when she pulled away, he smiled.

“Agreed.” he said, waving his hand and creating his illusion, once again. 
She turned and smiled at him. She walked up to him and he took her around her hips, pulling her into his embrace as Loki watched. She reached up and he leaned down and she shared a tender yet steamy kiss with his illusion. She had to admit, it was exactly like her Loki. She broke the kiss and turned to Loki. 

“Now, what I wanted.” She smiled at her Loki. 
He nodded and slowly started turning blue. His cuts dug into his skin and when he opened his eyes, they were the blood red eyes of a Frost Giant. She smiled and let go of the illusion and walked up to her Loki.

“Beautiful.” She whispered to him, planting a kiss on his lips but pulling away shortly after. 
He was left pouting, preparing for a deep kiss, but was left wanting. They had not gotten dressed from last night, so she looked down to see if his scar looked different in his blue form. Much like his Asgardian form, it was hard to see, but with the dark blue scar standing out on his light blue skin, it was clear. She reached down and ran her finger tips over it and he looked down to follow her hand with his sight. 

“Thor should have come to me. I would have helped.” She whispered, sad that he had yet another scar to bear. He took her hand in his and she looked up to meet his eyes.

“It’s okay. Everything worked out in the end.” He whispered back to her.
“Can we focus on us now?” he whispered, lifting her hands to his lips and kissing them tenderly with his blue lips. 
She smiled and nodded, as the illusion walked up behind her. He tenderly and lovingly caressed her hips and she moaned slightly, breaking the kiss with Loki and looking at the illusion. 

“He’s going to lift you up now. Don’t be startled.” Her Loki whispered to her as the illusion ran his hands down her thighs and swiftly lifted her up into the air, her legs folding up and around her Loki. Despite her warning, she did let out a little squeak as he lifted her. She hung onto Loki and didn’t trust the illusion to hold her.

“Lean back, he’ll brace you.” He whispered to her and she took a moment, but eventually, she leant back, bracing herself against the illusion. She felt the both of them become excited and prodding against her. She looked to Loki and the illusion and wondered how this was going to work. 

“Slowly, please.” she said the both of them.

“Always, my love.” The illusion leaned in and kissed the side of her neck. 
She leaned back into him and reached up with her right hand, running her fingers through his hair as he began to seduce her, running his hands up and down her spine slowly, creating Goosebumps. Loki smiled and leaned forward, slowly pushing up into her as his lips met her collar bone. She sighed loudly out of both ecstasy and release. This just made them all the more excited. Loki smiled it his illusion over her shoulder and gave him a little wink, signalling it was time for him to take her as well. He nodded and looked down, following the curve of her spine down to the rounds of her butt. She leaned forward to Loki and kissed him feverishly as the illusion took his place closely behind her and thrust up into her. She moaned loudly, but this time in pain. She broke the kiss with Loki and looked back at the illusion.

“I don’t think things are supposed to go up there.” She whispered to them, blushing profusely.

“Shush, it’s okay.” Loki said to her and she paid her attention back to him.
“It’ll work. Nothing bad is going to happen.” He said, leaning in and stopping just before kissing her.
“Focus on us.” He said again, before kissing her deeply, beginning to thrust into her. 

The illusion kissed her shoulders and neck, while caressing her hips from behind.
At first she wasn’t sure about all this, but she was glad she agreed to it in the end. It was something new and it certainly was putting the spark back in their relationship.

Winter’s Victim Chapter 75

Loki knew that Frigga was probably tending to her roses in the back garden so he went to go look for her there. He was right, she was using her magic to make them grow slightly, and smell wonderful. 

“Mother.” Loki said, walking out to meet her. 
She stopped and looked up at him and smiled at him.

“Loki my love. Did the boat trip go well?” she asked him as he reached her and stopped, as she began to work again.

“As well as can be expected.” He said, sighing, putting his hands in his coat pockets. She frowned and stood up right again, looking at him.

“What happened?” she asked him. 
He looked at her from under his eye brows and chuckled.

“You always know when something is wrong.” Loki said to her, kicking at the ground.

“I do. I’ve been your mother for 1060 years, Loki. I can always tell. But I’m no mind reader.” She said, putting down her utensils and taking off her gardening gloves. 
“Tell me.” she added, taking his hand and walking towards the pergola. 
She set him down and sat down next to him, taking hold of his hand. 

“She still feels the need to reject my advances.” He sighed and told her.
“It’s like she’s put up this wall that I need to scale again.” he said, looking at his mother’s blue eyes. 
She smiled and nodded.

“11 years is a long time.” she said, nodding and looking at the flowers. 
“She needs time to heal.” She said, looking back at him.

“She said the same thing, but I can’t just stand back and let time run its course. I need to step in and do something.” he began to explain. 
“I wanted to take her to Midgard on a honeymoon, but apparently I’m still forbidden from going there.” He sighed. 
She nodded; she could see why Thor had forbidden it. 

“Well Loki, you are a master of magic, I’m sure you can find some way to create the most beautiful illusion.” She comforted him, and leaning in slightly. 
He smiled and nodded. He could, but she needed more. 
“Just win her over, like you did the first time.” she concluded.

“It took me six months last time.” he said, looking at his mother.
“We leave for Muspel in a week.” he said to her. 
Now she understood, he wanted her to baby-sit, so they could have an intense bonding session. 

“You two will never be forbidden from each other again, so take as long as it takes. And yes, I’ll look after the children. I’ll also make sure food will be delivered daily, pudding included. ” She said, nudging him again. 
He smiled and chuckled. 

“I thought you said you weren’t a mind reader?” he said, looking at her. 
She shrugged and looked out over the garden again, standing up and looking down at him.  

“1060 years, Loki.” she said, walking off to go do her gardening again. 
He smiled and stood up and walked after her. 
“Here.” she said, bending down and snipping off some of her prize roses, bunching them up, before magically tying a golden silk ribbon around the stems, making a bouquet of flowers. 
“Give this to her, she’ll love them.” she said to him as he took them from her.

“Are you sure you’re okay looking after them?” he asked her, smelling the sweet fragrance from the roses. 
She nodded and moved beside him, pushing him along to the back door of the palace.

“I am, now go to your wife. Win her back.” she said, pushing him off. 
He stopped and looked back at her.

“Thanks mom.” He smiled at her. 
She smiled and teared up. It had been a long time since he called her mom. Mother yes, but not mom. Not for a while. He opened up a portal under him and dropped through, disappearing from sight. 

Loki appeared back in his room to see Vara standing on the balcony, watching the setting sun, with Eldur and Isa beside her, looking out over the magnificent site. He stood and watched for a while. His family. 

“By the time I got to the pergola in the rose garden, the sun was setting, just like now. The roses were in full bloom and it was a perfect day, except for Sigyn. Your father looked so handsome, standing there, waiting for me.” she explained to them about the day she and Loki got married. 

“And she was breathtaking in her white gown.” Loki said as he walked up to her and wrapped his arms around her waist. 
“I’ve never seen the finest pearls in Asgard look so dull before.” He whispered to her as she leaned back into him, digging her hands under his.
“Did you enjoy your flight, my loves?” Loki asked Eldur and Isa, looking at them.
Isa nodded happily, hiking her bag up onto her shoulder.
“Was she well behaved Eldur?” he asked him, looking over at his son.

“She was.” He smiled his toothy grin at his father.

“Are you looking forward to your little holiday, with your grandparents and your uncle?” Loki asked them. 
Isa and Eldur nodded to them and Vara looked up at his face. He seemed calmer now than before. It seemed that Frigga still had a way with him.

“Everything has been arranged.” He said to them softly, handing her the flowers that his mother had given him. Eldur and Isa looked at him, as Vara looked at the roses before she then turned to look at Isa and Eldur.

“Off you go.” She said, kissing them goodbye. Loki kissed them goodbye too and they took off. She watched as Eldur flew off and smiled back at the two of them. She shook her head at her wicked son. He knew too much for his age.

But now that they had a week to themselves, but she had to let him know that he had hurt her feelings earlier.

“Good, now that we’re alone.” She said, turning in his arms and smiling.
“There’s just one problem.” She said, placing her hand on his chest and pushing him back into the room. 

He smirked, knowing where this was going. They would get there eventually, but for now, a good scolding was in order. She pushed him suddenly and violently back into the bed. She placed the roses on his bedside table and turned her attention back to him. She bent down and towered over him as he smirked back at her. 

“Never, and I mean, never, talk to me like that again.” She said to him, her red cuts fluttering as her mood switched between anger and seduction. He suddenly realised what he had done, but he was going to go with it. 

“Or what?” he propped himself up on his elbows and looked at her. 
She smiled and knelt on the bed, walking over to him. She reached down and put her hands on his chest, bunching the material up in her hands. She smiled and pulled, ripping the cloth and leather under her fingertips, sending buttons flying in every which way. She smiled, seeing his exposed chest.

“I’ll burn you.” She said, putting her hand down on his chest, palm down.
He looked at her hand and frowned. She had never burned him before. Was this how they were going to put the flame back in their relationship, literally? 

“Then I’ll just have to freeze you.” He said, smiling up at her, hoping she was joking. But she wasn’t. She smiled back at him and turned the temperature of her skin up a few degrees, just so that he could feel it. He looked down at her hand to see the heat mirage starting to come off his chest. 

“Vara, stop, you’ll burn me.” He said quickly, feeling that she was just getting hotter.

“Make me.” She said, smiling. 

He looked up at her to see that her red cuts had disappeared and they were now playing a game. She had asked for it, so why not play along. He reached up and grasped her wrist, before his hand began turning blue from his fingertips up. The blue crept to touch her skin. With her heat, being met with his coolness, there was a sizzling and steam began to rise off their skin that was touching. She wanted to pull away, but she needed to get her point across. 

“Surrender.” She said to him, turning up her temperature. 
He looked at her as the blue began to creep up his arm, up his neck and across his face, his red eyes popping into view. 

“No.” he said, letting go of her wrist and reaching up with both his hands, and placing them on her shoulders, pushing slightly, trying to push her over. She knew what he was doing so she pushed forward, resisting his hands.

“You think you can beat me?” she asked him, reverting back to their first real conversation. 
He looked up at her and smirked, before calling upon his Frost Giant nature and strength, and pushing her back with so much force, she was literally forced back onto her back with him towering over her, her head hanging off the end of the bed. 

“I do.” He smiled at her. 
She then surrendered to him and stopped fighting. She had never personally sampled his true power or strength, having only seen him displaying it on his enemies. And having tasted it, it scared her a little, knowing he could call upon it at will. She wrapped her hands around his wrists at her shoulders and smiled up at him.

“I give up.” She said softly to him. 
He smiled and then caught a glimpse of her blackened wrist where he had grabbed her. He eased up off her shoulders and leaned back slightly, reaching out and taking hold of her hand, having turned his temperature up to not burn her again. He lifted her wrist closer to see the burn in the failing light.

“I’m sorry.” He said, looking at her eyes. 

“For what?” She asked him, and then he brought her wrist into her view.
She frowned at him and looked at her wrist as he showed her. She scoffed and sat up, bracing herself on her elbows. 

“It’s just a little frost bite.” She said, looking up to meet his eyes. 
He frowned and looked at her, not believing how easily she was laughing this off. 
“No really, it doesn’t even hurt.” She said to him, pulling her hand out from his grasp and reaching up to touch his cheek. He leaned in as she cradled his left cheek and reached up to lay his right hand over hers. 
“I’m fine.” she whispered to him, trying to calm him down and take his mind off from what he was thinking, that he was a monster. 

“Does this happen to you, on the inside, when I have you like this?” he asked her, worried for her safety. She frowned and moved up a little closer.

“A little, but like I said, it’s not painful.” She said him. 
He sighed and pulled back from her, slowly turning away from her and phasing back into his normal state.

“Oh no, you don’t get to do this.” She said, getting up and crawling over to him. 
He looked over his shoulder at her and she could see a tear forming in his eye. She gasped inwardly and leaned against him, wrapping her arms around him. 

“Loki, please, don’t worry about me. I’m fine.” she whispered to him. 
He nodded and she could feel his ice cold teardrops falling onto her hands. It was the first time she had ever seen him cry. Even through all the torture, and the pain and the broken bones. He had always fought it. But not now. She didn’t know what to say to him, she knew she had to comfort him, but how. Then she remembered what she said to him, when he first showed her his Frost Giant form. 

“I love you through everything.” She said to him. 
He turned his head slightly, remembering that that line was significant to them.
“You saved me.” she whispered to him. 
He turned and little more and looked at her. She reached out and took hold of his hand. 
“You saved me from a life of loneliness and never knowing what love was. You gave me a family, Loki.” she said to him, reaching up and wiping his tears away.
“You opened my world. You saved my soul.” She said, beginning to cry as well. 
She had never told him this. This is what she truly felt. With all the pain she had experienced in knowing him, the joy he brought her was unfathomable in comparison.  
“And I love you, in all your forms.” She said to him, bringing it back round to making him see that she wasn’t scared of his Frost Giant form. A tear ran down her cheek and he reached up and wiped it away with the flick of a finger. 

“All my forms?” he asked her, thinking about all the forms he had taken in his long life. She chuckled, remembering the horse story.

“I bet you made a magnificent mare.” She eased out of her laugh. 
He smiled finally and squeezed her hand. 

“I love you; I never want to hurt you.” He said, inching closer to her. 
She smiled and shook her hand.

“You never do. Not really.” She whispered to him, thinking back to her time on Earth. The reason why she couldn’t wield her mother’s sword anymore was the fact that she loved him and hated him, all at the same time.
“So please don’t withdraw from me. Show me your real self, you know I love it.” she said, reaching out and cradling his cheek again. 

He looked at her and she confirmed with another nod. He sighed and slowly turned blue again. She smiled and inched closer to him.
“There’s my love.” She said, planting and soft, tender kiss on his lips. 
He kissed her back tenderly, and gently took hold of both her hands. They broke off and she smiled at him.
“How about we just relax tonight? We have a whole week to do other things.” She asked him and he nodded. 
She nodded and stood up on the bed, slowly taking all her clothes off. He pulled his shirt and pants off, throwing them aside. He moved up to the pillows and lay down, looking out over the ocean. She walked over to him and lay down beside him, looking out over the same view. 

That night, he was comfortable for the first time in his life, to sleep in his Frost Giant form. It might not have been the lusty, sweaty night they both had been hoping for, but it was special and intimate. The perfect thing to heal two breaking hearts.

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