Beautiful. Your sneakers squeaked ever so slightly on the perfectly polished floors. You gazed in astonishment at the marbled pillars, the tapestries, the arched windows. Everything was inlaid with gold and silver and other precious metals, gleaming in the rosy glow of the setting sun. You had no idea where you were.
"You there!" a voice barked, deep and low and commanding. You halted in your tracks and whirled around to see a flash of red blue and silver before a large metal object stopped just short of your face. Upon closer inspection it was a large, square hammer, and it was wielded by a very tall, very muscular golden-haired man. The red was his cape; the blue his pants; the silver his armour. Deep blue eyes narrowed at you.
"Who are you and how have you come to walk the halls of Asgard!" he bellowed. "Answer quickly and wisely mortal!"
Your mouth dropped open. Asgard? Then this must be
"Thor!" Another voice entered the fray, this one soft and melodic, with the tones of a British aristocrat. You turned your gaze to another tall figure in armour of black, gold, and deep green. He wore a golden helmet with tall, gracefully sweeping horns. Icy blue-green eyes smiled upon you before turning back to the other man. He was pale and clean shaven in contrast to the Thor's ruddy, bearded face.
"Brother, you're terrifying her," he said softly, laying a hand on Thor's outstretched arm in an attempt to lower it.
"Loki, this mortal woman has somehow gotten past Heimdall's watch," Thor growled, glaring suspiciously at you.
"Yes," Loki agreed quickly, "mortal woman, Thor; in other words completely harmless to any of us should she try to challenge us, which," he added, looking you up and down, "without a weapon would be incredibly foolish of her."
Thor glanced sideways at him, gritting his teeth.
"Put Mjolnir down, brother. Please." Loki gazed unflinching into Thor's eyes until the bigger man finally lowered his arm. You realized you had been holding your breath and released it. Loki smiled. It was a rather dazzling smile.
"Now that wasn't so hard, was it?" He gently prodded Thor on the arm before turning to you and removing his helmet, revealing immaculately styled, shoulder length black hair. He dipped his head in a polite bow. "I am sorry if my brother frightened you. I am Loki Odinson, Prince of Asgard. This is Thor Odinson, also a Prince of Asgard. And you are?"
You awkwardly replied, and held out a hand for a handshake.
Loki took your hand in his and lifted it to his lips, pressing a gentle kiss to your knuckles. His skin and breath were oddly cool.
"A pleasure to make your acquaintance, my Lady," he murmured. You found yourself captivated by the mischievous sparkle in his blue-green eyes.
"Pleased to meet you too," you mumbled shyly, blushing under his gaze. He chuckled.
"Well then," he said, his emerald eyes twinkling, and released your hand, straightening up to his full height, "I welcome you to Asgard." You smiled in spite of yourself.
"Thank you." You attempted a curtsey, which in retrospect was ridiculous considering you were not wearing a dress.
"Brother, I would have a word with you," Thor said suddenly, clamping a hand on Loki's shoulder.
"Of course," Loki replied brightly. You detected a hint of sarcasm in his overly cheerful tone. They moved away, and you tried not to eavesdrop.
"Loki, this is madness," Thor was saying. "If one human could steal into our realm, who is to say there aren't hundreds? This must be reported to Father and dealt with immediately!"
"Then you report it to Father," Loki replied calmly, "although I personally do not see the threat. What is one human to us, or a hundred? We are Asgardians, Thor. Mortals cannot harm us."
"Mortals perhaps, but if there is a way for humans to enter unnoticed, then what else may enter our realm?" Thor turned with a swish of his cape. "I am going to speak to Father."
"Excellent!" Loki called after him. "And you may tell the Allfather that the human is under my watch. If she is a threat, I will dispose of her."
These words made your blood run cold. The fear was short-lived, however as Loki turned on his heel, smiling at you once more.
"My apologies if I alarmed you," he said softly, approaching you again. "A mortal in Asgard is a very odd occurrence indeed. Almost makes one question if she was intentionally brought here." At this he raised a dark brow at you and smiled. Then he extended an arm. "Well, shall we?"
You looked at his arm, rather perplexed.
"Shall we what?" you asked, awkwardly taking it, the leather of his armour smooth beneath your fingertips.
"Well, I see no reason to remaining standing here in this hall, and as you are now my charge, I thought I would take you on a bit of a tour." Loki cast a sideways glance at you that made your cheeks flush. He was shockingly handsome. You merely nodded, and the two of you set off.
Loki took longer strides than you, being as how he stood at least a head taller, and you found yourself struggling to keep pace with him. He showed you many rooms and halls, each one more magnificent than the last, until finally you stopped outside of a set of golden doors. He turned to you.
"Beyond these doors is my chamber, where you will likely be staying as well, unless other accommodations are made." He smiled warmly at you. "I hope you don't mind."
"Not at all," you blurted, perhaps a little too eagerly. He smirked and signalled for the guards to let you in.
His room was breathtaking. Not only was it enormous, but everything glistened with gold and silver. Black fur rugs adorned the floor, and a large four-poster bed stood in the centre, hung with gauzy golden curtains and draped in deep green, silken blankets. You gaped at the scene.
"This is easily the most gorgeous bedroom I have ever seen," you admitted, laughing nervously.
"I see you're admiring the bed," Loki said, sliding a mischievous grin your way. "It's even more comfortable than it looks." Striding casually over to it, he smoothed a hand over the curtains. You found yourself merely drinking in the sight of him, feeling a strange surge of excitement deep in your stomach. There was something dark and dangerous about this prince.
Noticing your glance but not saying word, Loki laid his helmet on the bed and slid out of his cloak. You watched with increasingly discomfort as he discarded a few more pieces of his armour until he was down to just a pair of black, leather, form-fitting pants and a soft, deep green tunic. Seeing your embarrassment he smiled and moved over to you. His movements were smooth and graceful, like a dancer.
Lifting a slender hand, he brushed a thumb over your cheek.
"Why so bashful?" he murmured softly. "If you react this way to me when I am still fully clothed, I am almost tempted to find out what you'd do if I removed my tunic."
Your eyes widened and you bit your lip, heart thudding.
"Please don't," you managed to choke out in a trembling voice, while mentally cursing your hormones.
"Or what?" Loki whispered, this time brushing the pad of his thumb over your lower lip. Cupping your chin in his fingers, he leaned down suddenly and paused mere centimetres from your lips. You held your breath, staring into his pale, piercing eyes and feeling a hot flush creeping into your cheeks.
He chuckled softly at your shocked expression. "I know I'm cruel, but you really shouldn't make it so easy." Thankfully, he let his hand drop to his side and stepped back. "Those garments are interesting, but they will attract far too much unwanted attention, I'm afraid," he mused, resting a finger ponderously to his lower lip and appraising your jeans and t-shirt. "I shall have to see if we can find some more suitable attire."
Almost on queue, there came a knock on the door. At Loki's invitation, a blonde-haired servant girl poked her head into the chamber. She looked momentarily stunned speechless when her eyes fell upon you, but she quickly recovered.
"My lord, the Allfather wishes for an audience with you immediately," she said shyly, gazing up at Loki through long, pale lashes. "He asks that you bring the mortal."
"Immediately?" Loki repeated with a flash of annoyance on his features. "That hardly gives any time to prepare her. Or would you think it wise to present her to my father dressed as such?"
The servant girl merely shrugged, staring at your jeans with mild curiosity.
"You are approximately the same size as her, are you not?" Loki continued, moving forward to take the bewildered girl by the arm and looking between the two of you, as if measuring with his eyes.
"I would think so, my lord," the girl whispered, her eyes widening as she realized his intent. "But my lord
"Excellent," Loki interrupted. "Then you will trade clothing, at least for an hour." He gave you both a sharp look. "I will be waiting in the hall." Pulling open the door, he left you alone.
You stared at her, and she at you.
"Well, this isn't awkward at all," you mumbled sarcastically. You looked her over. The dress she wore was a relatively simple design with a pale blue skirt and a brown corset tied over a white, fluffy blouse. On her feet was a pair of tiny brown boots.
"My name is Deirdre," she offered softly as she began to untie her corset, obviously less embarrassed by the situation than you were.
You mumbled your name in return, pulling your t-shirt over your head and trying not to feel self-conscious. No more words were exchanged as she helped you into her dress and you showed her how to button your jeans. Loki had been wrong; she was a little smaller than you. Luckily the corset could be loosened. A knock startled you and you tied up the boots.
"Are you almost finished?" Loki's voice drifted through the door.
"Yes, we're quite ready," Deirdre called back. Loki opened the door and beckoned you out.
"You will stay here until we return," he ordered Deirdre, who looked mildly distraught but nodded in compliance. Turning to you, he reached out a hand and tucked a strand of hair behind your ear.
"Your hair is very soft," he commented, causing you to avert your gaze, blushing.
"Thank you." You took the arm he extended and followed him down the halls once more; trying not to focus on how one boot was tied tighter than the other.