ByAlia Sauthor, writer at Creators.co

Sequel to As One. Always.

Prologue:

Today was the day.

I absentmindedly tugged at the necklace around my neck, glittering in the light, like it’s done for the last two years.

I checked my appearance in the mirror for the hundredth time. I took in my now toned and slightly tanned arms, from hours outside training, and the months spent helping Thor restore the peace. I gently brushed my right shoulder, exposed from the cut of the dress. There was a scar there, almost like a gouge mark; an arrow had made its mark there during our battles in Nornheim.

Sometimes I didn’t recognise the person looking back at me in the mirror. She had curvier hips. Her hair was much longer. I swear the last time I had looked in the mirror, it had been just below my breasts. Now it was just below my ribs.

The woman in the mirror looked just that: a woman. I felt like I was still a teenager sometimes, even though I was twenty six. I had grown up in the last two years.

Two difficult, long, lonely years.

My head was spinning as I slipped on a shawl. Asgard was having a cold spell, and every day it became more and more necessary. I felt especially cold today, and part of me wished Thor wasn’t looking out for me, and sent me into battle with Sif on Vanaheim.

I hadn’t been permitted to go on account of my left thigh. A knife had sliced a deep gash in it during battle and had kept me from walking straight for a while. When we came home for a short rest period and new orders, the healers had stitched it up and wrapped it. It still bled for a bit, and Thor deemed it wise to keep me here. It would have been wiser to send me away.

But I think Thor knew what was to happen to today, and decided he was doing me a favour. My hands shook, and I left my room, locking the door, trying to calm my pounding heart. Anxiety gripped me, and I tried to take steady breaths. It didn’t calm me. Nothing could calm me.

As I passed the halls, I stopped in the middle of the main hall, leading to Odin’s throne room. I knew he wouldn’t let me in for this. He wasn’t even letting Thor in for it, much less me. So I leaned against a pillar lining the walls, and whispered an incantation.

A strange feeling spread through me, and I smiled, glad it worked. I was completely invisible. Or, I blended in, at least, casting an illusion over myself. I had practiced this trick for many years, and it helped the armies of Asgard gain information.

It seemed strange that this would be the first time I would see Loki in two years, and I didn’t want him to see me yet. I wasn’t sure if I was ready to even talk to him again.

I had spent two years waiting for him to come home. And that didn’t happen. Wherever Loki went, he had stayed there for a long time…until a few weeks ago. A few weeks ago Heimdall found him on Earth, wreaking havoc. We were all in shock from the news, and part of it still didn’t sink in yet, at least for me.

Many thought Loki was dead, or he had gone somewhere so far he couldn’t return again. I didn’t know what to believe for a while. When I began to lose hope he would ever come home again, he shows up. And kills tons of people, plans to take over the Earth. Thor had told me in private, and I remember I had stormed outside to scream: “What the hell!” So I hid because I had no idea what to expect from Loki. I had no idea what to expect from myself.

I heard footsteps approaching, and immediately turned my head towards the door. I waited, the minutes crawling by, until I heard something else: the clink of chains. I watched as four guards in rows of two entered the hallway, followed by two more guards behind them. Four more guards followed in. The group stopped before the doors, and that when I saw him, first glimpsing the black hair, then the glinting metal of his armour.

Surrounded by ten guards with chains around his feet, hands and neck, stood the man I fell in love with years ago. The man I still loved now, who owned half of my soul.

Loki of Asgard.

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