Leah´s stomach growled taking her apart from her thoughts –“Damn! I´m so hungry …”- she thought, she didn´t wanted to face any of the Avengers at the moment, especially Thor. She had no way of knowing if they were all still in the kitchen, her stomach growled again to her dismay.
-Damn it, shut up! – She whirled in anger with such bad luck she hit one of her hands against the night table –What the…! Ouch! Fuck!-she nursed her wounded hand against her chest for a moment, once she had calm herself down she slowly took a look at her hand, she could see small blood stains on the white fabric, and then she smiled –Jarvis, can you patch me to Bruce, please?-
-Of course Mrs. Leah- the A.I. answered
-Bruce? – Leah asked trying to sound as innocent as she could, she had learned many things in the streets, it was about time she put them in practice.
-Yes Leah, is everything all right?-Bruce answered
-Umh … I´m afraid I might need a bandage change. I´m sorry, I forgot … could you please come? I´m so tired-
-Of course Leah, don´t worry I´ll be there in a moment-Bruce reassured her
-Thank you Bruce …and Bruce … could you please bring me something to eat? I´m starving.-Leah said trying on purpose to sound like a needy child.
Bruce couldn´t help to smile at her tone –Ok, I will-
Thor felt a bit jealous at Leah´s familiar tone with Bruce, and instantly felt ashamed, he was being a good friend to her, nothing else. Though he couldn´t help to ask –Do you need any assistance Doctor Banner?-
-Thank you Thor, but I don´t think it´s necessary, I can handle it –was Banner response, then he noticed Thor´s disappointment –I think is better I go alone and make sure she eats something before you talk to her. It´s been a hard day for her, we don´t know what will be her reaction to Loki´s revelations.-
-I guess you are right-Thor answered still annoyed at Bruce´s negative answer to join him.
It took Bruce about ten minutes to get down to Leah´s room carrying a tray with some food and a medical kit, which gave Leah sometime to think about what should her reactions be towards the news they were about to give her, she didn´t had a plan yet but she knew she couldn´t let them find out she had overheard them.
-Leah, is Bruce. Can I come in? – He said as he knocked on her door.
Leah remained on her bed, sitting over the edge and answered –Yes Bruce, please come in.-
After removing the now bloody bandage and getting a good look at the source of the blood he asked her –What happened?-
She sighed as she shrugged her shoulders – I knocked myself against the night table, It was so silly of me, I forgot it was there when I woke up – it wasn´t a complete lie he would notice if she lied about how that happened.
-The stitches are still in place, so no harm is done, don´t worry. I´ll clean it up and redress it, but you have to be more careful- Bruce motioned her
-I will- Leah answered as she anxiously eyed the sandwich Bruce had brought to her.
Bruce almost busted in laughter when he caught her –Come on grab it, I can work on your other hand while you eat.-
He hadn´t even finished his phrase when Leah had taken her first bite, while she was about half done she casually asked –Is Thor and the others back yet?-
-Yes, they arrived about an hour and a half ago-Bruce informed her
-And?-Leah asked in earnest
-Thor and Loki talked as you know ….-
-And? – Leah asked again trying to sound anxious
-I think it will be better if Thor explains everything to you, he wanted to tag along but I told him you should get something to eat first-
-You are worried about how I´m going to react.-Leah plainly stated
-Well, he finally has the answers you wanted, and after all that has happened today, can you blame me for being cautious?-
-I guess not – Leah answered –Where is he?-
-In the kitchen, finish your meal and I´ll walk you there.-Bruce offered
-“Damn!”- was Leah´s thought, why couldn´t Bruce just told her, she couldn´t refuse to go, it would be too suspicious so she just nodded her head as she agreed – All right, thank you Bruce.-This wasn´t going to be easy, she wasn´t used to lying, well not that much at least, she wondered how Loki managed to do it all the time, it didn´t seem to bother him.
-Hi Leah! – Tony greeted her as both she and Bruce walked in –We heard you had a “small incident”-
Leah blushed distraught by his comment as she unconsciously hide her hands under her arms while she answered –Um, yes. Nothing to worry about.-
-You think so? We almost had a heart attack when we walked into the kitchen, we thought someone had broken into the Tower.-Tony shamelessly answered
-Come on Tony, give her a break! She´s had a hard day, she doesn´t need you to remind her –Steve interrupted
-I´m sorry that came out the wrong way – Tony apologized -What I meant to say is that we were worried about you and we´re glad you are both ok-he ended giving Bruce a look that spelled help I´m dying in here.
-We are both all right, Tony. And we appreciate your concern-Bruce said trying to lessen the tension that Tony´s comment had built up.
Natasha came close to Leah and added while placing a hand on her shoulder –We really are glad to see you ok- then she motioned the rest of her teammates –I think you need some privacy, guys?-
-Certainly, you are right.-Steve answered dragging Tony away –We have things to do anyway.-
-Ok- Leah answered a bit concerned they might had decided to take her to Asgard right then, she wouldn´t have time to stop them if they had.
-Leah? – Thor called for her when she remained still.
-Oh, yes, sorry!-she snapped back-Bruce told me you had news for me-
She crouched on the opposite side of the couch where Thor was sitting, she didn’t wanted to be too close to him. Thor saw her defensive posture but decided to say nothing.
As Thor told her everything that had happened Leah realized she didn´t needed to fake her feelings, they were still to raw for her to hide so she cried again at Loki´s confession of Love and felt angry again at his negative to act on it, though she wasn´t sure if her anger was directed towards Loki or to herself.
-I´m sorry Leah- Thor said ending his story looking worryingly at her eyes.
She realized halfway Thor´s recollection that she hadn´t had time to react to the fact that Loki saving her was either an act of dumb luck or an act of brotherly love, either way it had nothing to do with her, so it took her a moment to answer Thor´s statement –Sorry for what Thor? – She asked as she tried to clean her tears with the back of her bandaged hands, which made Thor move towards her in concern.
-About everything, this morning … and Loki… and that.-Thor said pointing at her hands
-That was my fault Thor, I don´t know what was I thinking I overreacted.- Leah confessed angry at herself . -They will be all right in no time-
-Are you sure? Are you in pain? – He suddenly closed the gap between them as he tried to grab one of her hands.
Leah read his move and retrieve her hand before he could reach it –Thor, please don´t.-
-I´m sorry –Thor apologized –You must still be angry with me-
-No Thor, I´m not angry at you, I´m angry at myself –Leah sighed-I shouldn’t had given you false hopes, it was selfish of me, and I shouldn´t had been so mean to you earlier, you only wanted to help me. I´m sorry, I don’t want to make the same mistake twice, I do care about you Thor, just not that way.
Thor dropped his head in disappointment then asked in hope- Is there anything I can do to change your mind? Loki might not want a family, but I would.-
Leah´s heart cringed at his words –I … I am sorry Thor, I wish you could, but you can´t. Even with Loki out of the picture …the heart wants what the heart wants … and I can´t change it.-
-I understand –Thor heavily admitted – You can´t rule your heart- she couldn’t stop loving Loki as he couldn´t stop loving her.
-No you can´t –Leah sighed, it would have been so much easier if she could return Thor´s feelings and forget about Loki, she might even reconsider going to Asgard with him, but it had no point dwelling over it, it wasn’t going to happen. As she thought of Asgard she remembered her plan.
-Thor? Did Bruce told you about … our talk?-she asked in hope
-Yes, he did-Thor answered –We’ve been talking about it, we really don´t have another plan at the moment though I´m sure we´ll think of something before your baby is born, we won´t take you to Asgard if you don´t want to go. Though I hope you´ll reconsider, my Father would protect you, and my mother would be most pleased with your company, it has been a long time since the sound of baby footsteps was heard in the palace.
Leah sighed again as she thought –“So you´re not going to take me by force, but you won´t stop until you convince me. I´m sorry Thor, I have to go away.-
Thor cleared his throat snapping Leah of her thoughts –Oh! I´m sorry! You were saying?-
-Stark is working on a plan to get you safely outside for a couple of hours-Thor told her
Leah´s face lighted up as she heard the news, there was her chance to escape-Oh my god! For real?-
-Yes, Leah. You are not our prisoner, we don´t want you to feel that way and if this helps you we´ll all try to make it work.-Thor reassured her.
-Thank you so much, it will help me. I assure you.-Leah answered
-Though you´ll have to wait until your hands are fully healed-Thor added
-Ok, I can do that, I can wait-Leah said smiling, she had to start making plans on her own.
As the days went slowly waiting for her hands to heal Leah had time to come up with a plan, the only reason SHIELD had got to her was because Loki lured them to her, so she had no reason to believe they would be able to find her again should she choose to disappear. She knew fully well none of the Avengers would agree to her plan specially Thor, allowing her to leave alone wouldn´t be acceptable to them. If she was going to disappear she needed money, but it wasn´t as she could just ask Tony for it. At first she thought of taking something valuable and sell it, but she also needed it to be small and that no one noticed their absence, for a multimillionaire house it turned out to be a very difficult thing to find.
She also took on a mission to watch every spy or thieves’ movie she could get her hand into, she now had dozens of plans to escape on her mind; one of them had to work.
As days turned into weeks finally Bruce told her one day – I think we can remove the stitches, your wounds seem to have healed perfectly fine.-
That was all she had been waiting to hear, although she had plenty of ideas on how to escape the money part hadn´t come up as well as she thought it would, she had only managed to put together a couple hundred dollars. As she looked upon her scarce bounty she decided it would have to be enough, she was already on her fourth month, her clothes weren´t fitting anymore. That would make an excellent reason to go on a shopping trip.