Fireangel76

My Writtings

Month: August 2016

Ghosts

This time it was Steve who woke up first; as he stretched he mentally told himself while yawning. “I shouldn´t get used to this.” Next he looked at Loki who was still asleep. If he had his normal Asgardian strength his wounds would´ve been mostly healed by now. The delayed healing let Steve know just how weakened Loki was. With a disapproving sigh he carefully stood up and walked out.

He directed himself to the kitchen; once there he asked Jarvis. “Is Tony back yet?”

“No Sir.” The A.I. responded.

“Please inform me when he comes back Jarvis.” Steve requested patiently. “But not in front of Loki.”

“Certainly Sir.” Jarvis conceded.

It was late in the afternoon when Tony finally decided to turn up. Luckily Loki was asleep again when he did which allowed Steve to confront him.

“How dare you show up until now?” Steve reproached him vexed. He could feel his blood boiling, if he hadn´t promised Loki he wouldn´t nothing would make him happier than beating the crap out of Tony.

“Mind the yelling Cap. And what´s all the fuzz about? I needed some air.” Tony replied dismissing Steve´s tone as he rubbed his sore temples.

“I needed you yesterday! That´s what´s wrong asshole!” Steve growled furiously losing his patience.

“What for?” Tony whined. “To nurse Loki´s wounded feelings? I´m quite certain you are better than me with that sort of crap.” He looked at Steve irritated.

“You stupid son of a bitch!” Steve spat enraged “You almost killed him!”

“What? No, no, no. That can´t be.” Tony answered incredulous.

“I had to resuscitate him by myself.” Steve stomped the desk with his fist exasperated. “I needed you here, he needed you here. And you just …” He couldn´t even end his phrase.

“No, wait. What? I couldn´t … and even if I did … why didn´t he just healed himself?” Tony asked confused remembering seeing Loki do it before.

“I swear to God if he didn´t loved you.” Steve spat while using all his self-restrain; he wanted to hit him so much. “Jarvis, project Loki´s vitals on the screen.”

Tony skimmed through the data with a confused frown on his face. “That can´t be right.”

“Jarvis project the images of Loki´s injuries on the screen.” He needed Tony to understand the damage he had done.

“No, but how?” Tony rambled confused. “But … he seemed fine yesterday… how on earth he lost so much weight overnight?” He widened his eyes. “Is that … a plaster? Oh my God! I did that?” Tony looked genuinely horrified. “Why didn´t he healed himself?”

“Because he can´t.” Steve replied dryly. “Nor he wants to for what he has said.”

“What do you mean he doesn´t want to?” Tony huffed angrily.

Steve looked at him irked. “I know about Doom.” He crossed his arms while giving Tony an ice cold look. “What he really did to Loki.” His tone was accusatory. “I still can´t believe neither of you said anything. I understand Loki; but you … you are supposed to be in love with him! You are supposed to look out for him!”

“And you think I don´t know that! This is all my fault! If I hadn´t been distracted, he wouldn´t have had to shield me from the explosion …” He could hear his own heartbeat drumming in his ears. “He should´ve just let me die. Everything would´ve been better if he had.” Tony finally confessed. His indifference cracking down showing all the despair inside. “You always say I´ll drink myself to death. I had never wished more you were right. I just don´t know what to do anymore. I´m angry all the time, at Doom, at him, but mostly at myself for letting him down when it mattered the most. I can´t look at him without relieving that day … and … it just sickens me. I can´t even look at myself in the mirror without feeling disgusted. How can he stand to look at me day after day knowing I´m the reason Doom took him? I´ve tried to make him understand he deserves someone better than me, why doesn’t he understands?” He reached frantically for a bottle on his desk. It was too much reality to deal with while sober. “I´m too weak … I’ll only end up getting him killed.”

Steve sighed as he nodded his head in disbelief. “Have you told him what you just told me?”

“Not with that many words.” Tony reluctantly volunteered. “Talking about my feelings … it’s not my thing … I think you noticed.” Tony spat in irony before gulping the leftovers of the bottle he had found. “I ´genuinely tried … yesterday I mean; it didn´t end up well.” Tony leaned down into his hands frustrated. “I tried to end it before. To make him hate me. I wanted him to hate me as much as I hate myself.” He played idly with the empty bottle, suddenly he looked up at Steve. “Was breaking my heart too much to ask? From all the times he chose this to be unselfish …” He casted his eyes down as he asked in a reproach. “Why didn’t Doom took me instead?”

Steve frowned upset by Tony´s self-loathing and dryly asked. “You think that would´ve make this better?”

“At least for me.” Tony confessed. Being the victim, at least that was something he was familiar with.

“You …” Steve started to yell at him enraged.

“What? Selfish bastard? I think we have establish that. Why does it even surprise you? Yes; I´d rather be the one broken. That way I wouldn´t have to think.” He leaned into his palm distraught. “I can´t stop thinking … why didn’t he just leaved?

“Because he loves you, you moron.” Steve grunted.

“I don’t want him to.” Tony protested sulkily.

“It´s not your decision to make.” Steve pointed out harshly. “Don’t ask me why because I don’t understand it myself but he does. All he wants is for you to be with him.”

“I can’t.” Tony asseverated guiltily.

“Then tell it to his face, but you´d better explain him why.” Steve poked him in the chest firmly. “He is convinced you don’t love him anymore and it´s killing him, literally killing him. “He ran his hand through his hair in despair. “He´s been starving himself to death because he´s rather die than to live without you. He even went so far as to casting a spell so none of us would notice until it was too late.”

Tony kept nodding his head in denial. “I can´t. Not after what I did to him.”

Steve pulled Tony through his collar as he menaced him furiously. “I´ve had it with you Stark! You are going to see him and you´re going to explain him everything in full detail! I don’t care if I have to drag you kicking and screaming all the way.” As he let go of him asked. “What is it going to be?”

“I wouldn´t even know where to start.” Tony admitted nervously; knowing Steve wasn´t kidding.

“You´ll figure that out along the way.” Steve asseverated firmly.

“Shouldn’t we wait until I´m alcohol free? Or at least hangover free?” Tony asked in hope.

“That’s your problem.” Steve informed him looking grave.

“But …” Tony started to protest again thinking of some other pretext.

“Tony …” Steve warned him bluntly. “You are exhausting my patience.”

“You wouldn´t …” Tony said trying to feign disbelief.

“I´ve been consoling your heart broken boyfriend since yesterday …” Steve glared at him rabidly. “Do not test me.” A part of him wished Tony to keep resisting so he could go good on his word about dragging him to the infirmary. Finally, he asked at him irked. “Do you love him?

“Yes.” Tony asseverated quickly, he didn´t needed to think his answer, he knew it.

“Do you want him to die?” Steve yelled. “Cause that´s what it´s going to happen if you don´t do this.”

“I … I don´t.” Tony answered frightened, he didn’t felt he was capable of making things better. “But …”

“For crying out loud Tony!” Steve blurted madden. “If I had someone to love me like Loki loves you I wouldn’t hesitate. I would break myself in pieces trying to help him. No matter how much pain I would have to bear I wouldn’t desert him. Not even God would be able to keep me apart.” He was trembling in anger; suddenly he changed his tone as he took a step back adverting his eyes from Tony. “Regret is the worst part Tony.”

Tony didn’t need to see Steve´s face; he could hear the hurt in his voice as he continued. “Unsaid words will hunt you like ghosts.” Unexpectedly he looked back at him. “Don´t let that happen to you.”

Tony was taken back by Steve’s sincerity. It was so easy to forget how much he had lost; he seldomly showed it. “Steve … I am sorry. I didn’t know. Who?”

“It doesn´t matter.” Steve replied as he covertly dried his tears. “It´s too late for me. Don´t make the same mistake I did. You can still fix this. Don’t wait until it´s too late.”

“You really think he can forgive me, even when I can´t forgive myself?” Tony asked doubtfully. Steve’s´ confession had hit a nerve. What did he had to lose? His sanity? Worst case scenario Loki would truly hate him and leave him; best case scenario? He didn’t dare to hope.

“Why don’t you ask him that yourself?” Steve replied giving him a small sad smile.

“Probably I should.” Tony acknowledged; one way or the other it would be over. He started walking to the door when he turned back worryingly. “Seriously, what´s the worst that can happen? That he turns me into a toad?

Steve sighed as he nodded his head negatively; Tony always joked more when nervous. “If he does you would have well deserved it. But don´t worry if that happens I´ll get you a nice terrarium. I would even get you some friends.”

Tony considered it for a few moments. “Mmm … better not. I don’t want to wake up to learn I had tadpoles.”

“I guess not.” Steve couldn´t help to smirk to Tony´s comment. “Now stop stalling or …”

“I´m going, I´m going.” Tony asseverated, he had no desire of being unceremoniously dragged to Loki’s feet. Was there really hope? Or it was just Steve´s wishful thinking? Either way he was about to find out.

Clinging to Hope

It was the middle of the night when Loki suddenly woke up. He found Steve again sleeping next to him sitting on a chair. Just as before his arms and head were resting on his bed. He sighed. Would it really be so bad to give him a chance? He gently caressed his hair. Steve leaned to the warmth of his hand instinctively. For a moment he stood still wondering. Steve was so different from Tony; he had told him everything and it didn´t seemed to matter to him. He hadn´t looked at him any differently, well; he had but in a good way. He hadn´t even complained when Loki threw up the food he had brought for him. He just shrugged his shoulders and suggested to try again with something lighter when he felt better. Would it really be so bad? He could pretend … no, that wouldn´t be fair. Steve was both young and old at the same time; still struggling to find his place in the new world he had been thrown into. He now remembered catching him looking at him and Tony once; when things were still all right. He had a sort of lost child look in his eyes.

 

“Steve?” He asked softly hoping he wasn´t completely asleep.

“Mmm?” Steve drowsily opened his eyes and looked up.

“A while ago … was that your first kiss?” He couldn´t help to ask, me felt curious.

Steve blushed instantly. “I … well … umh yes.” Why did he ask him that? “Was it that obvious?” He asked in return concerned.

“Kind of, but I really just was wondering. “Am I your first crush?” He wanted to understand him.

Steve blushed even darker. “No, I …” He looked down visibly upset. “It doesn´t matter.”

“Why?” Loki asked intrigued.

“They are gone.” Steve answered with a heavy heart.

“I´m sorry. I didn´t meant …” Loki started to apologize. It must have happened before he got frozen.

“It doesn´t matter.” Steve shrugged. “I never had the courage to … do something about it. And now I can´t change it. Can´t we talk about anything else?” Steve asked trying to hide the hurt in his voice.

“I´m sorry, I didn´t thought.” Loki tried to apologize again.

“It´s not your fault. You couldn´t knew. I really don´t want to talk about it. Tell me about you and Tony.” Anything to drown down the memories.

“What do you want to know?” Loki asked intrigued.

“I don´t know. Why you love him so much I guess. He´s a complete pain in the ass for me.” Steve gingerly acknowledged.

Loki smirked amused. “You shouldn´t say that. He´s really fond of you, you know?”

“Well, he has a very strange way to show it.” Steve complained wryly.

“That he does.” Loki conceded. “But he respects you.”

“Sure! He´s full of respect. That´s why he put pink dye on my shampoo.” Steve remembered still feeling angry at the whole incident.

Loki couldn´t help to laugh. “Actually, that was me.”

“What?!” Steve spat surprised. “Why?”

“I just thought you would look good in pink.” He teased him.

“Well, I didn’t.” Steve pouted visibly offended.

“But you did, you looked like a cotton candy. Yummy enough to be eaten.” Loki joked without thinking.

Steve blushed again taken by surprise by Loki´s comment. Was he flirting with him? He looked up in hope he was.

Loki noticed his demeanor change and quickly apologized. “I´m sorry. I didn´t meant it that way. I really don´t want to give you any false hopes Steve. It´s just been so long since I had someone I could really talk to.” Looking at Steve´s sulking face he added. “Don´t get me wrong; you are a good man. Maybe … in a different lifetime.”

“But not in this one.” Steve finished his sentence looking grim. “Your heart it´s Tony´s I know. Maybe I should let you rest.” He stood up and walked to the door. Stopping without turning he added. “I´ll be on the next room so don´t get any ideas.” He left without waiting for Loki to answer. He knew it was foolish to hope, but he couldn´t help it. It was just too painful. As he closed the door behind him he turned back with tears on his eyes. He didn´t wanted to go; he just didn´t wanted Loki to see him cry over him anymore. He leaned on the opposite wall in the corridor and slid to the ground sobbing silently.

 

Loki didn´t needed to see Steve to know what had happened. He felt bad; but maybe it was for the best. Steve was right; his heart belonged to Tony regardless if he loved him or not. He felt miserable and lonely. Tears began to pour out of his eyes but unlike Steve he had no effort to silence his feelings.

It took only a couple of minutes for Steve to overhear Loki´s cries. He sniffled cleaning his nose with his sleeve. What could he do? He couldn´t leave him alone. What did it matter if his heart broke in the process? He had to help him. He stood up decided and walked back into the room.

Loki looked up startled; he hadn´t expected him to come back.

“I´m helping you to get Tony back even if it kills me!” He suddenly spat before cleaning his nose again with his other sleeve.

Loki looked at him too surprised to respond. He could see the tears still tracing Steve´s cheeks. His expression a mix of determination and pain. He opened his arms to him moved beyond words.

Steve doubted for an instant before running into Loki´s embrace. He couldn´t stop crying but he didn´t cared anymore.

Loki cried with him for a while overwhelmed by his gesture before calming down enough to try to comfort Steve who was still crying his heart out.

“Shhh. It´s ok. I´m sorry. I never meant to hurt you. Steve it´s ok. Don´t cry. You really don’t have to do it.” What could he tell him? That he would find someone else? If he believed that he would stop hoping for Tony to love him back. He sighed discouraged and warned him in a firm tone. “Stop crying right now or you´ll make me start crying again.”

“No.” Steve protested between sniffling’s. “I´m … trying.” He whined upset.

Loki sighed rubbing his back. “Try taking big breaths.” He knew that feeling; of not being able to stop.

Steve started taking long breaths between sniffling’s until he finally was able to stop. Loki kept hugging him until he did.

When he finally calmed himself down Loki loosen the embrace to look into Steve´s face. He still looked contrite and the fact that his eyes and nose were puffy and red didn´t helped.

“Look at us, we are a mess.” Loki finally acknowledged with a sigh.

Steve just looked at him still feeling miserable. Out of the sudden he asseverated. “I will keep my word.”

“You don’t have to.” Loki responded concerned; he couldn’t imagine doing something harder than what Steve had vowed.

“But I will.” Steve adamantly informed him. “If I can´t make you happy I´ll make sure he does. Even if I have to beat some sense into him.”

Loki looked at him slightly alarmed.

“I´m not going to hurt him.” Steve reassured him. “But he´s really thick headed. He might not want to listen to me; but I have to try. For your sake.”

“What have I done to deserve someone like you?” Loki thought but refrained from saying it out loud. Instead he answered. “I don’t know how to thank you …”

“Don´t thank me. At least not yet.” Steve replied.

“I´m sorry about your hair.” Loki suddenly apologized.

Steve couldn´t help to smile. “Just don’t do it again.”

“All right. No pink. How about blue?” Loki joked, it felt good to see him smile.

“No, unless you plan to paint the whole flag on my head.” Steve joked back. He loved seeing Loki smile.

Loki considered it for an instant. “That would make an interesting look.”

Steve backed down instantly. “I was only joking. Please don´t. I don´t want to look like …”

Loki´s laugh interrupted him. Steve was so naïve.

“You were only teasing me.” Steve realized.

“And you fell for it.” Loki smirked at him.

“I´m too serious for you.” Steve suddenly realized. “Tony would´ve played along.”

Loki frowned at Steve´s comment. Why would he do that to himself? “Stop that right now!” He scolded Steve.

“But he would.” Steve protested.

“I don´t want to hear you being sorry for yourself. I have the monopoly on that subject at the moment and you are not taking it away.” Loki added defiantly.

“But …” Steve started protesting again but Loki´s angry glare made him desist.

“As you wish.” He finally conceded with a sigh. Then he asked. “Why can´t you heal yourself?”

“I don’t have the strength.” Loki confessed. “And the pain killers you gave me aren´t helping either.”

Steve looked guiltily at him.

“They just make it harder to focus.  Don´t look so concern. I wouldn´t be able to heal myself even if you hadn´t given me any. And I’m not saying I would want to.”

Steve looked quizzically at him. Did Loki had a change of heart on the subject?

Loki didn´t really hoped Steve to be able to change Tony´s mind about their relationship; but that didn´t stopped him from wishing.

Not Valhalla

Bright white light hurt his eyes “Valhalla?” Loki mentally questioned himself while his unwounded eye adjusted to the fluorescent lights. Realizing his other eye wouldn´t open he sighed closing his eye again. “As if I were that lucky.” He wryly mocked himself before opening it again to scan his surroundings.

He was in the medical level for what he could see. His clothes had been replaced by a white hospital gown, his broken arm had been set right and plastered and his wounds taken care off. As he raised his uninjured arm to touch his wounded eye he noticed an IV strapped to it. Sighing he turn his head right and noticed Steve asleep by his side. He was sitting on a stool for what he could guess while his head and arms rested on the bed. Even asleep he had a worried frown on his face.

Loki sighed again, he hadn´t expected Tony to be by his side when he woke up; to say the truth he didn´t expected to wake up at all.

“Steve?” He called for him in a low tone.

A drowsy startled voice answered him back “Loki?” The frown disappeared into a relief smile. “You are awake.”

“I´m guessing thanks to you.” Loki dryly pointed out; although he had tried to hide it the bitterness in his tone betrayed his true feelings.

“I´m sorry.” Steve blurted out as he down casted his eyes ashamed.

“For…?” Loki asked intrigued by Steve’s demeanor.

“I should´ve …. I hesitated … I shouldn´t have … he broke your arm.” Steve raised his glistering eyes to meet Loki. “I´m sorry.”

Loki frowned confused while he studied Steve´s face. Why would he feel guilty? “It wasn´t your fault.” He finally told him.

“It is” Steve insisted. “I should´ve noticed sooner. I´m your leader, I´m supposed to take care of you all. Loki, I don´t understand. Why?” Steve looked extremely worried, tears threatening to pour out of his misty eyes.

“It´s not about my wounds.” Loki suddenly realized. He grunted displeased. How could he have forgotten? The glamour … it had faded away.”

“I´m not your responsibility.” Loki snapped angrily. “And if you are going to lecture me …”

“Stop it!” Steve raised his voice as he stood up. “I understand now you have a death wish and …” He bit his lower lip hard. “I stood in your way. And I will do it again, so you´d better …” He stared at him defiantly.

Loki interrupted him hissing vexed “You …. you arrogant mortal. You think you can stop me?” He tried to sit up but the effort lighted his body in pain.

Steve rushed to his side and help him lay down again as Loki coughed. “I´m sorry. I didn´t meant to upset you.” He sounded alarmed.

Loki sighed as his body was laid down carefully. Without the extra glamour he could notice just how thin he was. “Does he know?” He simply asked trying to sound uninterested.

“Tony? No. He … cut off communications, and … I really don´t know. I don´t think he has come back. Jarvis?” Steve asked feeling uncertain.

“Mr Stark is currently out of reach and he´s not monitoring the mansion.” Jarvis replied nonchalant.

“At least that´s something.” Loki replied somehow relieved.

Steve looked back at him confused. “He doesn´t? But how? Doesn´t he …?”

“It´s not of your business.” Loki snapped back cutting Steve’s´ questioning.

Steve´s fists turned white, he was squeezing them very hard trying to yell at Loki again. He closed his eyes as he mustered all the calmness he could as he asked: “Then why don´t you just heal yourself so I can stop being such a nuisance to you.” When he opened his eyes again Loki could see anger, but also pain, even sorrow. He felt guilty, Steve was trying to help him, he had saved his life and he was behaving like an ungrateful bastard.

“You should´ve let me die.” The words broke in his mouth. “You can´t help me, no one can.” Silent tears traced his injured features.

Steve felt his heart broke. What could´ve happened to make Loki feel that way? He was a powerful, skilled and resourceful man. What had happened to him?

“That won´t keep me from trying.” He replied with complete sincerity.

Loki looked warmly at him. “My sweet loyal Steve, sometimes I don´t know if that´s your biggest flaw or your best quality.”

“I hope it´s a quality.” Steve volunteered gingerly, before pleading. “Please, let me try to help you.”

“Don´t waste your time on me.” Was Loki´s response.

“Do you love him that much?” Steve asked feeling a knot in his stomach. “Enough to die for?” He fixated his blue eyes on him waiting for a response.

Loki stayed silent for a moment before surrendering his answer. “Yes.”

Steve couldn’t keep his composure after that, suddenly he made a muffled confession. “I want to hate him.”

“It´s not his fault.” Loki volunteered. “It was mine. I should’ve known better. A battle field is no place for love games. I was arrogant, careless … I distracted him. Then … what else could I’ve done? It was my fault he was unprepared. I had to save him. I didn´t thought …”

“But you saved him.” Steve acknowledged.

“Regardless the cost.” Loki agreed.

“I don´t understand.” Steve admitted. “You both seemed fine until that day. Maybe not the perfect couple, but a good one. And I know we all took it very hard when Doom captured and …” He swallowed hard, he hated saying it. “… tortured you.”

“He didn´t just … tortured me.” Loki confessed, he felt worn out, desperate. Maybe if Steve understood why maybe next time he would stay out of his way. “… he raped me.” The words burned like acid in his mouth, it was the first time he had said it out loud. Even his body rebelled in pain at his confession.

Steve gasped horrified; the knot on his stomach turned into a sharp pain. It didn´t made sense. “You never …”

“Said anything? I couldn´t … this is the first time I said it out loud.” He admitted laboriously.

“But … Tony. He knows, right?” He inquired anxiously, Loki seemed to be very good at hiding things.

“I assume that much, we never talked about it.” Loki confessed.

Steve felt totally baffled, how could they not talk about something like that?

Loki continued his story with complete disregard at Steve´s confusion. “He found me chained, naked, filthy, bleeding just where Doom left me after discarding me as if I were a broken toy. He freed me, dressed me up and took me back to you. He didn´t said a word, but; the hurt in his eyes as he cleaned me up. “He knew.”

“But he didn´t do anything … he should´ve help you. Say something. You were in pain.” Steve interrupted scandalized.

“So was he.” Loki sighed defeated. “I failed him, I wasn´t strong enough to defend myself. I allowed it to happen. I´m weak, unworthy….”

“Don´t you dare say that.” Steve scolded him. “You shielded Tony from the explosion, you saved his life. The damn thing knocked most of us down for a couple of minutes Doom could´ve taken any of us.”

“Too bad he had a grudge against me. I used to sleep with him Steve; I should´ve been more careful.” Loki huffed. “Changing sides on him over Tony. It was foolish of me not to anticipate his vengeance.” Loki admitted calmly.

Steve´s eyes widened appalled of Loki´s way to talk about the whole situation, so analytical.

“I tried to get over it, but I can´t.” Suddenly he looked right into Steve´s eyes. “I can´t sleep, I can´t eat, I can´t think, I can´t even be with tony any more. I can´t live like this anymore Steve, I just can´t.”

“Is that why?” Steve asked afraid of his answer.

Loki chuckled wryly. “I didn´t wanted any of you to know, not until it was too late at least. I still had my pride. You would be surprised how easily I deceived all of you.” What better way for the God of lies to depart than with a lie?

Steve nodded his head negatively in disbelief, he couldn´t understand how Loki had fooled them. According to Jarvis Loki was 44 pounds under his normal weight. “You couldn´t have fooled him … I mean, you sleep together.”

“We share a bed.” Loki confessed. “He never touched me again after that day, he tried, but he couldn´t hide the disgust in his eyes. Somewhere along the line we mad an unspoken understanding to maintain appearances. We tried to uphold that bargain, that until today.”

“What happened?” He asked inquisitive.

“Yesterday happened.” Loki answered as it was all the explanation it needed.

“The goblin?” Steve volunteered unsure.

“He threw a grenade at Tony. I tried to get him out of the way; I hoped to end it.”

“What?!” Steve gasped alarmed.

“Tony noticed. He got both of us out of harm’s way. That´s what started the fight. He wanted me to quit the team, to go back to Asgard. He went as far as to say I should´ve gone back to my books long ago, that I had no place in the battlefield … I couldn’t prove him wrong. Nevertheless, I tried to find my way out.”

Steve step back horrified, he really had tried to get Tony to kill him. He could play in his head the gruesome outcome if he hadn´t been in the mansion, Loki´s lifeless form on the floor …

“I told you all of this for a reason.” Loki interrupted his thoughts. “Help me end it. No one has to know … it can just be a lover´s quarrel gone wrong”

Steve felt like his heart threatening to break in his chest, his breathing grew swallow as blood drained out of his face. How could he ask him that? He had no right.

“Please Steve, it would be a better end than starving myself to death.” The sincerity of Loki´s plea frightened him more than anything.

“I can´t …” Steve mumbled in denial. “Please don´t ask me that.”

“You could just increase the painkillers …” Loki suggested plainly. “Let me go.”

Steve walked towards Loki´s bed timidly almost frightfully, he unavertable touched Loki´s fingertips with is as he leaned into the bed to tell him. “I´m sorry. He´s not worth it. I can´t.”

Loki broke down; it didn´t mattered he had confessed everything. He had done it for nothing. Steve wasn´t going to help him. Ignoring the pain he sat up as he screamed furiously at Steve. “So you are just going to stay there and watch me suffer? He´s gone! Don´t you understand? That was all the comfort I had left and know he is gone! I´m alone! Thor can´t help me! You can´t help me! No one can! He doesn´t love me anymore! And how could him? I´m worthless! I”

Steve couldn´t take it anymore, he had sworn to take the secret to his grave, for Loki´s sake, for Tony´s sake …. But it hurt too much.

 

Holding to Loki as if he was holding to dear life itself he tore the truth from his own lips as he allowed his withhold tears to flow unrestricted. “I love you. I know you´ll never love me back. And maybe I´m selfish but that´s the main reason why I can´t do it. Please, don´t make me. I love you.”

Loki was too stunned to react, after all he had told him … but Steve wasn´t lying. No one could fake such heartbroken sobs, not even him. Why hadn´t he noticed before?

For a couple of minutes they just stayed there in relative silence; the only sound was Steve trying to muffle down his own sobs. Suddenly Loki relaxed into Steve´s hug resting his head on the youngers man shoulder. He hadn´t been held that way since that fatidic day, it felt so comforting. For a moment he wished he could fade away into such a warm embrace. Steve froze as he felt Loki leaning into him; he felt scared, so scared.

“Your heart … does it always beast that fast?” Loki shamelessly asked. “It sounds like a scared rabbit.”

Steve tensed meaning to break their embrace.

“Not yet.” Loki protested immediately noticing Steve´s intentions.

Steve sighed deeply. “But ..”

“Shhh” Loki motioned him.

Another defeated sigh told Loki he had won. Steve decided to ignore all the arguments his brain was already working on. Whatever happens next at least I´ll have this. With that in mind he decided to risk it. Trembling nervously he turned his face towards Loki. “Loki …. I … I´ll understand if you say no, but I …” Loki looked up to find a flustered Steve fidgeting with his words. “I …” He could feel Steve´s heart beat raising again. He smirked. How could he not notice? He loathed himself for being cruel, but he longed for him so much. Knowingly he leaned into Steve´s kiss pretending it was Tony.

Steve was painfully aware of it but decided to ignore it. “It doesn´t matter.” He tried to convince himself.

But Steve wasn´t Tony, he was too sweet, too giving; he lacked the fire Tony´s kisses had.

Loki pulled apart apologetically. “I´m sorry. I shouldn´t have done that. You are not him.”

Steve casted his eyes down. “I shouldn´t have said anything; don´t apologize. I brought this upon myself. I just …” He sighed. “I don´t want you to go. “He looked up. “I would´ve made you happy if you could´ve found a way to accept me, I really would´ve tried.”

Loki smiled kindly at him, he knew he meant it. For a moment in his kiss he was tempted to let him. But that would only have prolonged his pain and viciously drag Steve along to his own personal hell.

“That fucking stupid selfish bastard doesn´t know how lucky he is.” Steve spat furiously.

Loki raised his eyebrows almost amused; Steve didn’t used to swear out loud.

“Yes, I can swear. I just don´t do it much.” Steve responded with irony. “Could you at least heal yourself so I can stop making a fool of myself?”

“I couldn´t even if I wanted to.” Loki confessed. “And I´m sorry Steve, but I don´t want to. My mind is made.”

“I wished you changed it.” Steve told him sorrowful.

“All I can promise is that it won’t happen under your watch. I´ve been cruel enough with you already. I could tell you I didn´t meant to, but it would be a lie.” Loki conceded almost ashamed, almost.

“I´ll just have to keep my eyes on you then.” Steve volunteered, afraid to give in into hope.

“Stop!” Loki reprimanded him. “You can´t fix this, let it go.”

Steve´s hopes crashed again.

“Can we just pretend everything is all right? For tonight? I could use some company.” Loki tried to smile. It didn’t matter what he did Steve’s heart would be broken; at least they could provide each other a measure of comfort, at least for a moment. “I could use a friend”
“I think I can do that.” Steve nodded sadly.

Broken

Steve sighed with satisfaction as he let himself drop into his bed. Finally he had all the mansion for himself.

“It´s not that I don´t enjoy their company” He thought feeling a pang of regret over his relief. “It´s just …”

A loud noise interrupted his thoughts making him jump out of the bed startled. “What …?” He was interrupted again by what sounded like a small explosion. “That´s just great.” He complained upset by the sudden turn of events as he grabbed his shield and ran to the lower level which seemed to be the source of the commotion.

Before he reached the end of the spiral staircase he recognized Loki and Tony´s raging voices. He stopped grunting upset. “They are at it again. I don´t understand why don´t they just break up. It´s not getting any better; not at least since …” Steve heart cringed at the memory. “not since Loki got hurt.”

He stood still undecided; considering if he should intervene in the lover´s quarrel when a loud painful shriek snapped him out of his thoughts. He covered the distance between the stairs and the living room in just a few seconds. His heart pounding loudly, painfully in his chest. Why had he hesitated?

He stopped dead in his tracks as he entered the room unprepared for the scene playing in front of him. Tony had both his gloves and boots from his Iron-Man suit on. His face distorted by the rage that shined rabidly in his eyes. Blood dripping from his mouth as well as from a wound on his side; several dark bruises marked the unprotected parts of his body. But even as bad as he looked it was nothing compared to Loki´s state. One of his eyes was too swollen to remain open anymore; blood dripped from his nostrils as well as from his mouth. He had his right arm bended protectively against his body. Something looked wrong about the angle it dangled; suddenly Steve realized, it was broken.

Even so Loki coursed and provoked Tony relentlessly calling him all sort of names. The cold fury in his voice made Tony´s rage paled in comparison. All of a sudden Tony growled irked; he had had enough. As he raised his arm preparing to fire his propeller against Loki Steve found his voice. “Stop! What on God´s name are you doing?” He was already standing between Loki and tony as he finished his sentence.

“Stay out of this Steve!” Tony grunted, his propeller still on. “He asked for it.”

“Coward!” Loki snarled. “You don´t have the guts.”

Steve remained still looking straight at Tony´s eyes; determination drilled in his face as he calmly added. “I´m not moving.”

“You want him Cap?” Tony retorted, anger oozing from every pore as he lowered his arm. “You can have him, I´m done with him.” Without expecting any response from either of them he fired his legs propellers and stormed away.

Steve stood too surprised to react for a couple of seconds; he could feel the adrenaline flowing all through his system when a low sob brought him back.

He turned around concerned and found Loki on his knees, tears pouring absentmindedly as he stared at the open door Tony had left on his abrupt departure.

Without any warning Loki turned his attention to him. “Why?” His tone was accusatory.

Steve wasn´t sure of what to say. “He …” He stuttered. “He would´ve …”

Loki didn’t need Steve to finish his sentence, he was full aware of what he was going to say. “And why didn´t you let him? Why?” Loki broke down. He couldn´t even tell which pain was more unbearable.

Suddenly he winced as he coughed loudly; when he removed his hand from his mouth he smirked. It was covered in blood, deep dark blood. He smiled almost peacefully before collapsing.

“Loki! Loki!” Steve tried to reanimate him in vain. Had he been too late? How could´ve this happened? How had things gotten so bad? His eyes had inadvertently filled with tears, he closed them for a second before pulling himself together. Cradling Loki’s body into his arms he dashed at top speed towards the infirmary.

Loki felt almost weightless, he pushed the thought down. There were more pressing matters at hand.

“Jarvis I need help. Patch me to Tony.” Steve almost shrieked as he reached the underground medical level. Everyone else was too far away to be able to return in time to help him.

“I´m sorry Sir, but it appears Mr Stark has cut off communications.” Jarvis informed him.

“Jarvis, an ambulance?” Steve asked nervously, he had basic training in first aid but nothing more.

“I´m afraid I don’t think you have the time if you want Mr. Laufeyson to survive.” The A.I. replied nonchalant as it monitored Loki´s life signs. “He´s going into cardiac arrest.”

“Jarvis!” Steve practically pleaded as he laid Loki in the examination table and started CPR. He had never envied the lack of emotions of the A.I. until that moment as Jarvis kept instructing him on what to do to save Loki´s life.

After what it seemed an eternity to Steve the A.I. suddenly stated. “Mr. Laufeyson pulse is steady now, you can stop the compressions Sir.”

“Thank you Jarvis.” Steve answered in a whisper as he leaned into the examination table emotionally exhausted.

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