Author Topic: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (PG-13) chapter 15 FIN 06/11/2014  (Read 264 times)

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Offline ban sidhe

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Author: ban sidhe
Title: The Error of His Ways
Rating:  G (can you believe it?)
Fandom:  Loki/Marvel AU
Disclaimer:  Pictures were gathered from all over the Net and belong to their creators. Names and characters from the Marvel universe belong to them.  Liberty is all mine.  Summary: A young, not yet completely disillusioned god is sent to Earth to learn a lesson.  He does, but not in the way expected.
Pairing: Loki/OFC
Archive: Here only please, unless a specific request is made... just shoot me a pm.
Feedback: The more the merrier!  I love hearing your thoughts.
Author's Notes:  Just wanted to prove to myself that Loki wasn’t always evil.  He does have a heart, wounded though it may be.

The Error of His Ways

Wherein a son of Chaos learns that there can be good in Order and Order’s daughter comes to understand that her way isn’t the only one... and change can be enlightening.

His name was Loki.  That’s it, just Loki, no patronymic.  He was tall and slender and she thought him rather aristocratic and mysterious looking.  His clothes were elegant and too formal for school, but always new and dark and fashionable.  Then she wondered what someone like him was doing at her school.  He so obviously didn’t belong.  What kind of name was Loki anyway? 

His hair was a three inch, spiky cap, brushed straight back and gelled into points.  He had pale skin, so he didn’t spend much time outdoors and those long-fingered, soft hands had never picked up any sort of farm tool; she was certain.  When he looked down his long, straight nose at someone he almost always wore a frown, lips pressed together in distaste.  Those pale eyes, what colour are they? cold and distant. 

Her name was Liberty, unusual for a Patturn, but her mother had been a bit of a wild child in her youth.  Both her younger sisters bore perfectly normal, acceptable names; Harmony and  Patience.  The slight oddity made her even more structured than most, determined to prove she was just like everyone else.  Fit in, don’t stand out; that was her motto. 

The girl was the oldest of three, all of them slender, blue eyed and varying shades of blonde.  Liberty was gold, Harmony was honey and Patience was white-blonde, so pale she burned in the sun.  Both the older girls had more of their father’s complexion and they tanned to a lovely tawny colour.

Liberty lived in a small town in rolling rural countryside.  A pretty little place tucked neatly into a fold of the hills at the end of a shallow valley.  The rest of the bottom lands were given over to farming and related industry.  The entire area was a patchwork of fields, with small country lanes zigzagging neatly around the edges.  One main road arrowed directly down the center, following the path of the small lazy river.

Here and there, a cluster of blindingly white buildings snuggled together in a corner where several fields met.  Farm buildings, silos, barns and equipment sheds.  All neat and tidy, kept swept clean and whitewashed like the rest of the town.  Liberty’s folk believed cleanliness was next to godliness with a vengeance. 




So here she was, middle of term, sitting in science with a completely and utterly different sort of person as her lab partner.  A new student, from out of town... heck, he was probably from out of state if that accent meant anything.  And he’d brought nothing to class with him; not a book, notepad, pencil, not even a fancy voice recorder. 

He lounged on the lab stool like he hadn’t a care in the world, suit jacket unbuttoned.  How someone could lounge on one, she couldn’t understand, but he managed it.  His long limbs twined around the legs of his seat and his shiny, black loafers resting on the rungs.

He’d wiped one forefinger across the top of the counter and rubbed it with his thumb, a slight sneer appearing for an instant.  Then he pulled a silk, silk! hanky from a back pocket, wiped off his hand and the counter, dropped the cloth on the floor and planted his elbow where he had cleaned.  Now he gazed up at the teacher writing on the board, sharp chin in hand, looking for all the world like he was asleep with his eyes open.

Liberty frowned, confused and concerned.  There would be a quiz tomorrow and lab partners were expected to study together.  Did he think she was going to do all the work?  Just borrow her notes, which were rather copious and detailed, or did he not care about his grade?  Or maybe he didn’t realise they were linked, that his work reflected on hers. 

Should she say something?  He was not easily approachable.  She’d seen that earlier, at lunch.  Cord, the captain of the basketball team had asked if he played and gotten the coldest, most dismissive once-over, including a delicate snort, that she’d ever seen.  Loki’d turned away without a word. 

He ate weird, too.  Brought his own lunch, brown-bagging it like a lot of students, if you could call a white styrofoam containered, commercially prepared meal bringing your own.  At least she thought it was, though there was no stamped label on tray or bag. 

What was inside when he opened it made her gag.  Raw fish?  Yuck.  And some strange green paste that he smeared on the bite-sized pieces.  Finished with an apple, always a yellow one, precut and what looked like cider to drink.  Where’d it even come from?  Weird.

« Last Edit: Wed, Jun 11, 2014, 04:58 AM by ban sidhe »

Offline Tiberius

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 1 ONG 05/19/20114
« Reply #1 on: Mon, May 19, 2014, 12:11 PM »
Interesting start! Quite unusual, not what I thought you might write next about Loki.
What kind of school is it? A college?

Btw, what he's eating? Sushi? I'm wondering why Liberty doesn't know what that is.

Offline ban sidhe

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 1 ONG 05/19/20114
« Reply #2 on: Mon, May 19, 2014, 01:44 PM »
High school, (secondary school), Tib.  Yes, it's sushi and you'd be surprised what a lot of people don't know about. 

Middle of nowhere in middle America... she may know what it's called, but has never had any experience of it.

Offline Montgomery Burns 13

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 1 ONG 05/19/20114
« Reply #3 on: Tue, May 20, 2014, 10:29 AM »
Fascinating.  You've piqued my curiosity.

Please update SOON!!!

:wicked


Offline ban sidhe

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 2 ONG 05/19/20114
« Reply #4 on: Tue, May 20, 2014, 12:38 PM »
Loki dokey, Monty!

Loki was annoyed.  No, more than that.  He was royally pissed off.  This was his father’s idea of learning about the ‘little people’?  The ones he was likely to rule one day?  After his older brother got himself killed, that is.  Which was becoming more and more of a possibility every time Thor took up another extreme sport as a hobby.  What an idiot.

Innocent in his arrogance, the fool assumed he could do no wrong, never get hurt.  One might think he believed he was immortal, for gods’ sake.  Which they almost were, but still, it was so crass to flaunt it.  And they could be damaged, even if it took a lot.

Thor liked group activities, the more boisterous, the better.  Always the leader, pushing his bunch of friends to try ever more dangerous pursuits.  Racing in souped up vehicles, sailing experimental watercraft, hunting the largest, most dangerous predators in all the realms, climbing the highest peaks, fighting just for fun.  For fun!

Loki had stopped trying to compete with him in that manner a while ago.  Just as tall, but lighter of build, he was no match for Thor’s brute strength.  Their rivalry was just as fierce as it had always been, but now the younger brother waged a more subtle war for their father’s approval.  Loki was the smart one.  He used his brain and his ability with words to win his battles.
 
Dark where his brother was fair, Loki hid in shadow and watched the golden boy grow only more brash and overconfident with their father’s acceptance of his ridiculous behaviour.  Odin Borson seemed to actually like his first-born’s rashness, his willingness to jump right into a situation and put any wrong right.  Even if the fool didn’t bother to check to see if there was water in the pool before leaping. 

Sighing quietly as he thought about how to cut this ‘learning experience’ short, Loki glanced over at the girl sitting so primly beside him.  She was sort of cute, reminded him a bit of his girlfriend back home.  Same big, guileless blue eyes and golden blonde hair.  And just as shy.

What was her name?  She had stuttered an introduction when he’d first sat down.  Oh, Liberty, that was it.  Now she sat there, studiously scribbling away, like her life depended on taking down every single word of the drivel their teacher spouted.  In a monotone, no less.  Guaranteed to put him to sleep in another five minutes. 

He sighed again, bored and thoroughly disgusted with this place.  Everything smelled like fertilizer, to put it politely.  He quirked a half of a secret smile.  Thor would have simply called it  like it was... cow shit.  How vile.  And no one even seemed to notice.

Well, he noticed and he hated it, every minute of his exile in this backward, gods-forsaken Midgardian outland.  He already missed home with a deep ache in his gut that made his throat close and nausea threaten.  Looking out the window was no help, it only reminded him that here there were no real mountains with snow-capped peaks, no deep blue sea with its fresh, salty breeze, no bright city with all the cultured delights to be found therein.   

And now the girl was staring at him.  Sideways, as if she was afraid to openly show any interest.  Why?  Was he that strange?  Or was it just because he was new and different?  Who knew with mortals?  He sighed a third time and swallowed a sudden upwelling of self-pity.  He was Loki Odinson, prince of Asgard and better than this. 

“Are you alright?  You look very pale.”  The quiet whisper caught him off guard.  He turned to look directly at her for the first time.  Innocent concern was written all over her pretty face.

“Fine, thank you.  Just a bit tired.  Jet lag, you know.”  He murmured back.  Her eyes widened even more. 

“Oh.  I thought maybe you were, um, sick.  Maybe lunch?  Disagreed with you?”  Liberty tried to explain.  But she was thinking, Oh, wow!  Those eyes are the palest shade of green I’ve ever seen.  Like cat’s eyes.  How unusual.  Kinda pretty with the dark lashes.

“No, the sushi was quite fresh.  Flown in this morning.  I trust the restaurant owner knows better than to provide me with anything but his best.” 

“Oh.”  That was to be the extent of her response after a quiet little gasp of surprise? 

“Um, okay.  I just wondered.  You weren’t paying attention and... do you need to borrow my notes?” she said after a moment.  Liberty had just realised he was an aristocrat.  Maybe he really didn’t know how things were done around here.  Probably had private tutors wherever he came from.  Obviously, he had grown up rich.

Loki softly smiled down at the sweet little thing.  She was actually trying to be helpful.  And her concern was apparent and genuine.  How absolutely adorable.  Like a puppy. 

“I do not.  But I thank you for the kind offer, nonetheless.  If you should need assistance with understanding any of this... science, I would not be averse to explaining it.  You may simply ask.  Perhaps later if we have some time free, or after the day is finished.”

Wow!  He is so strange.  What an odd way of speaking.  I like it, though.  Sounds so elegant.  Like a fairytale prince or something.  Oh, my God!  Could he actually be one?  Liberty’s thoughts were going crazy, not like her at all. 

She shook her head once to try and get back on track.  “Well, actually, since we are going to be partners, we’re supposed to study together.  I hope you don’t mind?”   Please say you will, she prayed, fingers crossed in her lap. 

Loki thought he might have finally found a way to amuse himself until he was recalled home.  With a small tuck of his head, he murmured, “It would be a pleasure, Miss Liberty Patturn.  Shall we meet in this hall of study or would you prefer... dinner, perhaps?”

Yikes!  Did he just ask me out or am I imagining things?  Liberty smiled weakly and bit her lip.  “I’d love to, but I’m not sure if I can.  Have to check with the parents first, you know.  And, uh, I don’t know where you live?”

“Not to worry.  I will call for you at your residence, if that would be acceptable?”  Loki smiled graciously back.  “Here, allow me to give you the number of my cell phone.  So you may apprise me of their answer.”  He clarified when her mouth fell open and went as round as her eyes. 

“Oh, uh, right.  Of course.”  Loki reached over and calmly took her pen from numb fingers, quickly scribbling his number in the margin at the top of a page. Liberty jolted, looking shocked and embarrassed as their teacher admonished her to be quiet.

“Miss Patturn!  Private conversations have no place in my classroom.  You know that.  Eyes front, please.”  Liberty blushed and nodded, looking at her lap.  She was startled and even more embarrassed when Loki spoke up.

“Please forgive Miss Patturn,”  he drawled, rather superciliously.  “She was only trying to explain the requirements of the class to me.  I was unaware we were to work together, nor that I was expected to have writing materials on hand.  An offer to share her notes should not be a reason for chastisement.  You may blame me.  I accept responsibility for her temporary distraction.” 

Loki had even stood and now, with one hand centered on his chest, he gave a short, sharp little bow.

The teacher just stared blankly at him for a moment while the rest of the class snickered or outright laughed.  The man obviously couldn’t decide if Loki was sincere or putting him on.  He finally cleared his throat, harrumphing quietly.  “Very well, Mister, ah...”

“Loki.”  Liberty glanced up.  He pronounced his name LOO - kay, not the way it was spelled. 

Frowning, the teacher shuffled some papers.  “Your last name?”

Smiling serenely, Loki replied, “Unnecessary.  There is only one of me.”  He sat back down to more laughter. 

Liberty heard someone mutter, “that’s for sure,”  but quietly.  Then more giggles.

Fortunately for Liberty’s complexion, the bell signalling the end of class rang at that very moment.  Amid the scraping of seats and shuffling of papers and books, she lost track of the tall, slender boy with the odd accent and classy manners.  He had stunned her when he took responsibility for their little chat.  Even though she had started it.  She felt she should thank him and now he was gone.
« Last Edit: Wed, May 21, 2014, 05:47 AM by ban sidhe »

Offline Montgomery Burns 13

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 1 ONG 05/19/20114
« Reply #5 on: Tue, May 20, 2014, 01:37 PM »
Quote
She felt she should thank him and now he was gone.

I'm sure she'll see him again. :)

Loki at a high school in a backwater town in middle America.  How on earth did you get the idea? :giggle

Love the chapter.

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Offline ban sidhe

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 1 ONG 05/19/20114
« Reply #6 on: Tue, May 20, 2014, 03:47 PM »
It just seemed like something so totally foreign to anything in his nature.   ;D

Offline Tiberius

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 1 ONG 05/19/20114
« Reply #7 on: Wed, May 21, 2014, 03:04 AM »
Poor Loki!
He must hate the whole situation so much :grin

I can't wait to read more, please update soon.

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 3 ONG 05/19/20114
« Reply #8 on: Wed, May 21, 2014, 05:46 AM »
Other than the upcoming study hall, the last period of the day, Liberty shared only science and lunch with the new boy.  She had to try and catch him before the end of it if she wanted to let him know she appreciated his gesture.  So she hurried to get to the auditorium and stood by the door as all the other students wandered in and found seats. 

But she never did find him.  Finally just as the late bell rang, she dropped into the nearest empty seat.  Hopefully Mr. Waters wouldn’t write her up, but she had to be sure she didn’t get a late check, too.  Her parents would be so disappointed.  She was the perfect child, always straight A’s and faultless attendance.

She watched for him as school let out, too.  No sign of him getting onto one of the fleet of buses that took home the kids who lived far out of town.  Shrugging, Liberty turned to make the mile walk back to her house.  She lived just on the edge of the little community, her parents’ property backing up to the last farm. 

She’d only gone about half a block when a sleek, acid green, low-slung sports car pulled over to the side of the road just in front of her.  She’d never seen anything like it.  It looked like a wedge, higher in the back than the front and it only had two seats.  The car was facing the wrong way, into oncoming traffic.  Not that there was much and anyone coming around the bend would certainly see him a long way off.

 
 

The top was down and the driver smiled over at her, one arm resting on the door.  “Hello again, sweet Liberty.  Might I be so bold as to offer you a ride home?” 

She gasped in shock.  It was Loki.  Of course it was.  Why had she thought he would ever be so plebeian as to take a bus?  And who else would be driving a fancy car like that?

Speaking of, one of the big, yellow, diesel monsters chose that moment to pass by, spewing fumes and the driver honked angrily.  Kids’ faces were plastered to the glass, some just staring and others laughing and yelling out the open windows. 

Loki ignored them, only waving a languid hand in front of his face, a slightly pained expression crossing his features.   “Surely you would prefer not to breathe such noxious air?” he added, as she looked back at him.  “I’m fairly certain it is not conducive to maintaining the flawlessness of your complexion.  Hop in.  I’ll have you home in a flash.”

He reached across the cockpit and opened the passenger side.  Liberty was surprised again when the door lifted up like a wing rather than swinging open as she expected. He had a point, though.  The miasma left behind by the buses and other vehicles that passed usually had her washing her face and hands as soon as she walked in her door.  It would be nice to arrive home without feeling gritty and smelly for a change.

“Thank you, Loki.  That’s very kind.”  He jumped out and closed her door, too, after taking her books and handing her in.  She needed it; the seats were so low she felt like she was sitting right on the pavement. 

“Alright, my lovely,” he chirruped after he bounced back into the driver’s seat.  “Directions, please?”  He grinned over at her, his sparkling, changeable eyes now seeming a brighter teal, while in class she had thought them pale green.  He acted much more animated now away from school, too. 

Restarting the motor, Loki made sure she was belted in and with a wide smile, he gunned the engine and shifted into gear.  The car took off like a bird, the deep rumble almost not noticeable over the roar of the wind.  Liberty squeaked, it was so fast!  And surprisingly smooth as they careened around curves and cornered sharply. 

She had barely caught her breath and he was pulling into her driveway.  Twisting slightly in his seat, her new friend cocked his head and nonchalantly asked, “What time should I arrive?  Is seven too late?” 

“Um, well, I have to make sure it’s alright first.  This is a school night, after all.” 

Loki simply chuckled and jumped out of his side, without opening the door.  So he was athletic, even if he didn’t immediately appear it.  “I’m sure your parents will have no objection.  All we are doing is studying, correct?  Something that is a requirement for that class?”
 
He opened her door and easily lifted her out.  Before he relinquished her hand, he bent low over it and kissed the backs of her fingers.  “Later, lovely lady.  I shall return at eventide.”  Grinning again, he walked back around to his side of the car.  But she noticed he did not get in until she had climbed the front porch and was opening her door.

She was still standing there bemused, when her mother came up beside her.  “Who was that young man, Liberty?  Where did you meet him?  And why were you in his car?” 

“Oh, Mother!  You startled me,” she jumped a little.  “Um, he said his name is Loki.  He’s a new student in school.  Mr Waters made him my lab partner, so we have to study together.  He saw me walking home and offered me a ride, that’s all.  Just being polite.  He seems nice, even if he does have a funny accent.  Definitely not from around here.  He wants to study tonight, if that’s okay?  I’ll make sure all my chores are done first and the rest of my homework.  He’ll be here at seven, he said.” 

She put a hand over her mouth to shut herself up.  She never babbled like that.  What was wrong with her?

Her mother stared at her for a couple of minutes, almost long enough for her to become nervous.  Then she smiled.  “You like him, don’t you?  He seems quite the young gentleman.  Unusual these days.  Especially for someone of his circumstances.”  She patted Liberty’s arm.  “Yes, if you have everything done, you may study with him.  I will want to meet him first, though.  As will you father.” 

Liberty wondered what ‘circumstances’ her mother was talking about.  She figured she’d ask later when her sisters weren’t around.  She’d heard the two of them in the other room, obviously peeking out the front window and and giggling like a couple of silly fools.  Now, she had a lot to do if she was to be ready. 

                  
###

Liberty was almost finished with her chores, lugging in a full basket of laundry when she suddenly remembered she hadn’t called Loki back to say her parents had okayed their study date.  Rushing to get back in the house, she stumbled on the back steps and almost dropped the whole load.  “Darn it!” she muttered, hopping on one foot until her bruised toes stopped throbbing. 

“What was that, young lady?”  Liberty winced at the sound of her father’s rough voice.  She hadn’t thought he’d come in already.  He always seemed to know when his girls behaved ‘unladylike’ as he put it.  Young ladies did not swear. 

“Sorry, Dad.  Banged my foot on the step.”  She apologised.  “Almost dropped all the girls’ school clothes.”

Her father stood just inside the door, holding the screen open for her.  “Thanks,”  she smiled up at him. 

Major Patturn was a big man, with curly, unruly chestnut hair and bright blue eyes that saw right through any foolishness.  He smiled down at his eldest fondly.  She was turning into a real beauty and he feared this new young man would only be the first of many to decide she would be an asset to his reputation.

He intended to put the fear of God into him right from the start.  No treating his daughter as anything less than a lady.  She was his pride and joy and he would not stand for anything less than perfect behaviour. 

He knew what youth were like these days.  Always into instant gratification and selfish desires.  Well, not with his daughter.  Not that he didn’t trust his girls; he did.  But boys could be very convincing when they wanted something from a girl. 

And his Ginny had said this one had shown up in some fancy sports car, dressed to the nines.  Right from school?  Sounded fishy to him. 

Turning up her cheek for a quick kiss, Liberty brushed by her father and left the basket at the foot of the stairs.  She ran into the kitchen and picked up the phone.  At her mother’s lifted eyebrow, she blurted.  “Have to call Loki.  Tell him it’s okay.  Almost forgot.  I’ll be quick.” 

Her parents looked at each other over her bowed head and while her mother smiled, her father shook his head and frowned.  He was almost ready to not like the boy before he’d even met him.  Not if he made his sensible daughter act like this. 

Loki showed up right on time; well, actually a few minutes early.  Liberty was still upstairs getting ready and collecting her books.  She heard the car arrive and gasped.  She’d wanted to be at the door to let him in and maybe give a bit of warning.  Her father could be intimidating.  The town’s blacksmith and farrier, he was all muscle and fierce eyebrows. 

She heard her mother’s voice as she scrambled to collect what she thought she’d need.  And then Loki’s soft drawl in answer.  Whatever he’d said made her mother giggle like one of her sisters.  She was coming down the stairs and her mother was introducing him to her father. 

“You, sir, are the luckiest man I have met in quite some time,” Loki oozed charm.  “Not one, but four beauties to feast your eyes upon every day.  It must be difficult for you to even leave the house come mornings.  I must admit to being a bit stunned by all the feminine pulchritude that surrounds you.” 

Just as she came around the corner, Loki offered his hand to her father, with a slight bow.  “Loki Odinson, at your service.”   As he straightened, Liberty realised he was even taller than her father.  And now she knew his last name.

Major frowned, unused to looking up at anyone, let alone a youth who probably had not yet reached his full height.  He was polite, a smooth talker for sure.  But he seemed a gentleman; he’d even brought flowers... not for Liberty, but for Virginia.  It had certainly put her in his corner right away.  He shook the boy’s soft hand, surprised at the strength in his grip.

Now the young man turned to Liberty and bowed again. “My lady,” he murmured softly, and kissed her fingers as he’d done with Major’s wife.  Continental manners, the big, gruff man thought.  And that vehicle sitting, glowing in the dusk at the end of his driveway.  This kid came from money, a lot of it.  Not the first one to do so, Major wondered just what in heck he was doing here.

Offline Montgomery Burns 13

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 3 ONG 05/21/20114
« Reply #9 on: Wed, May 21, 2014, 11:26 AM »
Love the update!

So Loki drives a Lamborghini Aventador-V Roadster, huh?  Awesome!  Why can't I meet people like him? lol

Good for him that he's such a silver-tongued guy.

Can't wait to find out what his plans are though. :wicked

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Offline ban sidhe

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 3 ONG 05/21/20114
« Reply #10 on: Wed, May 21, 2014, 12:11 PM »
Did you really think he would drive anything less?

Offline Tiberius

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 3 ONG 05/21/20114
« Reply #11 on: Wed, May 21, 2014, 12:20 PM »
Cool car!
I think I would like one, too :grin

I'm most curious for Loki's plans, too :evillol

Offline Montgomery Burns 13

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 3 ONG 05/21/20114
« Reply #12 on: Wed, May 21, 2014, 12:34 PM »
Quote
Did you really think he would drive anything less?

To be honest, I hadn't given much thought to the question of what kind of car he'd be driving. But yeah, the car suits him, especially the green color. :grin




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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 3 ONG 05/21/20114
« Reply #13 on: Wed, May 21, 2014, 01:41 PM »
 ;D  Exactly the reason I chose it.

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 4 ONG 05/22/20114
« Reply #14 on: Thu, May 22, 2014, 10:37 AM »
After asking Liberty if she had a ‘wrap’ to protect her from the evening chill, Loki relieved her of her books and led her out.  He looked back as he opened the door for her.  “You need have no fear, Mr Patturn.  I will take the best possible care with your beautiful daughter.  And return her to you exactly as she is in this moment.”  He smiled again, nodding politely and closed the door behind them. 

“He’d better,” her father growled, watching Loki settle his eldest into that wild-coloured death machine.  He only hoped the kid could drive.  And wasn’t fooled when Loki sedately pulled out onto the street and drove off at a reasonable speed.  Major listened to the deep rumble of that very powerful engine get softer as distance increased.

Ginny curled herself into her husband’s side.  “Oh, relax, Maj.  I’m sure they’ll be just fine.  He seems a very nice boy.  Polite and thoughtful.  He even made sure I have his phone number if we needed to call for any reason.  How many boys would think to do that?” 

“Mmm,” he rumbled.  “I’m not so sure.  And I don’t think I care for the way Liberty looks at him.” 

Ginny just laughed and punched him gently on the arm.  “Rather like the way I look at you, dear?”

“Exactly.  She’s much too young.” 

“No, she’s not.  She’s seventeen and a half.  You’re just lucky this is the first time she's looked at  a boy like that.”  Ginny chuckled again.  “Go get washed up.  Dinner is almost ready.”

Liberty was shocked when she discovered where Loki planned on dining.  “But... but, it takes an hour to get there,’ she stuttered.  “Then an hour back and time to eat; we won’t have time to study and still get back before curfew!” 

He simply looked across at her with a mischievous little grin and winked.  Two minutes later, they made the highway and Liberty’s eyes went very wide.  She slid down further into her seat and clutched her seatbelt.  Then she made the mistake of glancing over at the dials of the instrument panel. 

If the one she thought was the speedometer was correct, they were going way too fast.  Literally fast enough to fly, if she remembered last year’s physics class correctly.  Her class had spent half a term studying aerodynamics and aeronautics; the take off speed for a big commercial jetliner was somewhere around 180 mph, depending on its weight. 




So they made it to the larger town in less than twenty minutes instead of the hour that was normal.  Loki pulled up to the restaurant with a final grumbling purr of machine and parked.  He leaped out and tossed keys at the open-mouthed valet with a pleased smirk. 

Swaggering around to her side, he chivalrously lifted her from the vehicle, then glanced back at the young man still standing there, staring at the car.  “Not a scratch, my man,” he warned him.  When the guy only nodded and gulped, he added in a slightly concerned tone, “You can drive a stick, I hope?” 

“Sure, mister.  But where is it?”  The valet was leaning over the driver’s side door, scratching his head. 

“Oh, dear.  Just a moment, Liberty.  It appears I will have to park her myself.”  Loki frowned in annoyance.  “You.  Stay with the car while I seat the lady.”  He swept Liberty inside, opening doors and looking for the maitre d’. 

Rather imperiously, she thought, Loki flicked a couple of fingers, hustling the eatery’s major domo to his side.  Leaning in slightly, he whispered something about seating his guest while he took care of a small matter outside.  “The usual table, please.  And what ever she wishes while she waits.” 

“Of course, sir.  Right this way, Miss,” the man bowed and waved a hand to Liberty.  “If you’ll just come with me?”

She was still walking into the dimly lit restaurant when she heard the engine rumble again.  This place is way too expensive; I won’t know what to order, she worried. I’m going to look like a complete idiot.  I should have said study hall.

Seated, Liberty was presented with a menu and realised the drinks were alcoholic.  “Um, sir?” she looked up at the waiter.  “Could I just have a Coke?” 

Without a blink, he smiled.  “Of course, Miss.  I’ll be right back with that for you.  Would you prefer it over ice or simply chilled?” 

“Uh, chilled, I guess,” she stuttered.  Even before he returned, another white-shirted person arrived with a frosty pitcher of iced water that had sliced lemons floating in it.  He smiled and turned her glass upright, pouring for her. 

Then he set the pitcher in the center of the table and lit the small, covered candle.  Loki came striding across the floor as if he owned the place just as the server straightened up.  The man glanced up and filled his glass, too, before silently disappearing into the kitchen.

Rather than take the seat opposite Liberty where it was set, Loki hauled his chair a quarter way round the table so he was sitting on her left.  Immediately, the second man came back and reset his place in front of him.  Then quickly rearranged the table so the candle, fresh flower bouquet and other serving items were out of the way.  Liberty smiled up at the man, but Loki ignored him.

Their waiter arrived with two glasses at that moment.  Her Coke and what looked like a glass of honey-coloured wine for Loki.  Liberty frowned and whispered, “Is that wine?  You shouldn’t be drinking if you’re driving, should you?”  She was afraid to ask if he was old enough.  She wasn’t sure if a fancy place like this would serve an underage patron even if they did obviously know him.

Loki chuckled, “No, my delightfully worried dove.  It’s only mead.  And I will be fine.  I drink it every day.  It keeps me young.”  He laughed again.  “Now, have you seen a menu, yet?” 

The waiter, who had been standing behind Loki’s right shoulder, stepped closer and handed each of them a leather-bound binder.  “Ah, here we are.”  Loki opened his while sipping his drink.

Liberty gulped at the items listed.  The least expensive ones cost as much as her family spent on a meal for all of them the few times they were able to eat out.  And she had no idea what half of the offerings were.  The names were not in English.

“So, my lovely, what are you in the mood for this evening?”  Loki’s low voice purred at her. 

Liberty shrugged and sighed.  “I’m sorry, Loki.  I don’t even know what half these things are.  I don’t speak... French?” she guessed.

“Don’t fret about it, sweet lady.  What would you like?”  He lifted one shoulder and one elegant brow with a smile.  It didn’t seem to bother him at all that she was so inept at this.  “The chef will prepare whatever you wish.” 

“Um, could I just have a burger and fries?” she squeaked softly.  “If that’s okay with you?”

“Of course it is.  This evening is all about you, sweet thing.”  He folded his menu and looked up.  The waiter appeared at his elbow like magic and he quietly ordered the same thing for both of them.  In perfect French.

“I’m embarrassing you, aren’t I?” she moaned. 

“No, never,” he frowned, smiling and shaking his head.  “Now, tell me about astronomy as you understand it.  It will help me to know where you may need assistance.”

“Oh, okay.”  Liberty was surprised.  Apparently they were going to work even through dinner. 

They sat, heads together, poring over her schoolbooks until their food arrived.  The waiter thoughtfully removed several things from the table, giving them room for plates as well as workpads and textbooks.  If Loki even noticed, he made no mention of it, so Liberty only smiled silently up at the man.  He smiled back, giving her a little wink as he whisked things out of their way.

It wasn’t long until they were deep in discussion, Loki explaining the differences between novas, supernovas, black holes and wormholes so clearly, Liberty couldn’t believe she had had trouble with it before.  His elucidation of gravity wells stunned her in its simplicity.  Where had he learned all this?  And why was he bothering sitting in that stupid class?  He could have taught it better than Mr Waters.

Food got eaten, Liberty laughing when he attempted to eat his fries with a fork.  He did leave to wash his hands when they were finished, so she felt she should, too.  Plates were removed and while neither of them noticed, the sky darkened and stars appeared.  Loki even joined her in an ice cream sundae for dessert, stealing spoonfuls from her dish and shivering at the cold.  Delicious, he said, but too sweet for a steady diet of it. 

She’d noticed during the first few days of school, before they had spoken, that he seemed to prefer fruit for a sweet.  Always the golden apple and sometimes, berries, grapes or dried plums, apricots or raisins at the end of his meal. 

Now, suddenly, he paused mid-sentence.  “Excuse me, Liberty.”  He reached into his jacket pocket and removed a buzzing cell phone.  “Oh, no.  Have I kept you out too long?”  A hand touched his lower lip and he answered quietly.  “This is Loki.”

Liberty looked out the window and realised it was full dark.  Oh, no!  She would hear it when she got home.  She’d be lucky not to be grounded for a month. 

“Yes, of course.  We are leaving the restaurant now.  I do apologise, sir, this was entirely my fault.  We simply lost track of the time in study.  I’ll have her at your door in no more than a half hour.”  With a sigh and instantly angry expression, he added, “I’m always careful.”  It never showed in his voice though and Liberty was stunned at how fast his face had changed, his eyes flashing darker.

Liberty felt sick.  Now her parents wouldn’t allow her to see him again.  She was sure of it. 

Loki glanced up at her and smiled, “It’ll be fine.  Don’t worry.  You father appears gruff, but I’m sure he is a reasonable man.  He’s just concerned for you.  Completely understandable,  he doesn’t know me yet.” 

Our waiter must be psychic, Liberty mused.  The man appeared at Loki’s elbow the instant he tapped the phone closed.  Tucking the phone back in a pocket, her date removed a soft, dark leather wallet and slipped a card out of it.  He handed it to the waiter who blinked, but made no other remark on it.  Liberty wondered at that.  She’d never seen a black credit card before.

Loki left her for a moment after collecting all her school supplies.  “Retrieving our ride,” he said.  And shortly after he went through the door, she did hear that deep rumble of his wild green vehicle.  The tall young man reappeared long enough to sign and take back his credit card, lift Liberty from her seat and chauffeur her out the door. 

They flew home at the same crazy speed as they had arrived, Loki taking the curves and corners of the country highway with ease.  He pulled up to her door in just under the promised half hour.  Again the gentleman, he opened her door and helped her out, then carried her books to the door. 

Where she was met by both parents, her mother hanging on her father’s arm.  It looked to Liberty like she was holding him back.  Loki handed her inside, but remained on the porch himself.  He stood calmly, waiting for her father to check his daughter, not in the least worried and looking totally unapologetic. 

Liberty could hear her father’s voice and occasionally a softly spoken answer from her date, but couldn’t make out their words.  Loki left after a few minutes, driving off the way he’d arrived, carefully and not too fast.  She took a deep breath to prepare herself for the coming lecture, but it never arrived.  She wasn’t sure what to make of that.

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 4 ONG 05/22/20114
« Reply #15 on: Thu, May 22, 2014, 11:01 AM »
Love it!!!

Quote
wild-coloured death machine

Hehe. :giggle

Don't wanna seem greedy, but I can hardly wait for the next chapter. :grin


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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 4 ONG 05/22/20114
« Reply #16 on: Thu, May 22, 2014, 11:06 AM »
Dang, you're quick! ;D

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 5 ONG 05/24/20114
« Reply #17 on: Sat, May 24, 2014, 07:59 AM »
The next day, school was the same as always.  There were some curious glances and a couple of pointed questions from her girlfriends, but that was all.  Loki was his usual aloof self.  Ignoring everyone in the halls and sitting by himself at his small table during lunch.  Today he had what appeared to be a container of yoghurt that he dumped another of small, dried red berries into and stirred them together.  And that ubiquitous yellow apple, of course.
 
lingonberries

They had a test today in science and he took a seat right in the front of the lecture hall, where no one ever sat, especially during tests.  Liberty wondered if she should sit with him, but her friend Chastity grabbed her arm with a whispered, “Sit by me.  I might need your help.”  Liberty looked at her; she would never cheat and Chastity knew that.  “You can just give me a hint if I’m wrong.  That’s not cheating.” 

She made a face, but went with her.  “This isn’t my best class either, you know,” was her only comment. 

Chastity laughed, “Even after you had Mr Perfect tutor you?”

Liberty looked at her, not understanding.  “What do you mean?” 

“You don’t have any other classes with him, do you?”  Chastity smirked.  “So you don’t know.  He’s never wrong.  Never studies, never takes notes, never even brings his books.  But he still has the right answer to every question.  Always gets 100 on his tests.  Skews the damn curve every time.” 

She sighed, “Too bad he’s so standoffish.  I could use a man like that.”  Laughing she added, “Especially in English.  Which he tested out of, by the way.  Spends the period in the library, reading encyclopedias and Ms. Bridges personal collection of the classics.”  Chastity shook her red-blonde head.  “So weird.”

Liberty glanced up at the front of the room.  So it wasn’t just science; he was really smart.  Anyone who could test out of a class had to be practically a genius. 

She wondered if that might have something to do with why he had trouble relating to the other students.  They couldn’t talk to him on the same level, probably had nothing in common.  Add being very wealthy to the mix and she could understand why he was a loner. 

She thought about it the rest of the day.  Being a basically kind and helpful person, Liberty wondered if there was any way she could make things easier for her new friend.  She really didn’t know much of anything about him, where he’d come from or why he was here.

The only thing she was sure of was that he didn’t bother to make any effort to make friends.  She seemed to be the only one he spoke to, and she had initiated that conversation.  Not a joiner, even though he’d been approached several times by various club members.  And of course, that disastrous meeting with Cord. 

After the basketball team captain got the brushoff, he had yelled after Loki’s back, asking if he thought the locals weren’t good enough for him.  The tall, slender, dark-haired boy had slowly turned and smiled icily.  “You’re not,”  he stated, quite calmly.  And walked away.

                  ###

LIberty tried inviting Loki to sit with her during lunch.  He replied that he had no wish to intrude upon her time with her friends.  “Would you like company at your table then?  You don’t have to eat alone; I could sit with you,” she offered. 

“Thank you, dear one, but no.  I prefer solitude.  It gives me time for contemplation and watching certain of our classmates shovel the swill served here like boars and masticate like yon bovines does nothing to improve my digestion.” 

Liberty frowned up at his smile.  “You are so strange sometimes, Loki.  You say the oddest things.  Who thinks about digesting their food properly at our age?  Who even thinks about what they’re eating?”  She shook her head and giggled.  “Most kids just want pizza, sweets and fried stuff.  Nobody eats like you; that’s for sure.” 

She did not say what she was really thinking.  Wow!  What a snob.  I hope he didn’t think that when we had dinner together.  A word her grandmother used when referring to ‘city slickers’ suddenly popped into her head; ‘fastidious’, that’s what he was.

Almost as if he’d read her mind, Loki lifted one brow and tucked his chin slightly.  “Present company excepted, of course.  I would have no qualms in seating you at my mother’s table at any time.”

“Really?  How kind of you,”  Liberty almost spat at him.  If that was meant as a compliment, it hadn’t worked.  “Sorry I asked,” she snapped and flounced away. 

Loki stood there, watching her cross the room and slap her tray onto the table with her friends.  He was genuinely confused; what had he done wrong?   Liberty said something and every girl at the table looked up at him and they all seemed annoyed. 

Mortals, he thought, so touchy.  He would find out later, in science, what had upset her.

But Liberty refused to speak to him unless it was related to the class.  Unused to being denied whatever he wished, Loki responded in kind and decided to simply ignore the foolish female.  He knew eventually she would come around.  His charm was irresistible.

The rest of the week was rather uncomfortable for Liberty.  Loki seemed quite content to be ignored and returned her silent treatment with one of his own.  He gave her the barest minimum of his attention in science and nothing outside of class. 

Of course word got around, since everyone had been surprised in the first place that he had responded to her at all.  Several of the more popular girls had tried to catch his interest and had been rebuffed just as quickly.  In fact, he’d been so rude to the head cheerleader and class president, that Purity had fled his chilly smile in tears.

His attitude did not make him any friends among the popular crowd; the pretty people and the sports-minded.  Cord especially was just looking for an excuse to get Loki alone somewhere and pound on him.  But the tall, dark-haired boy did not seem to stand out as he should have.  He was hard to find unless he decided to be seen. 

Even the adults were not proof against his disdain.  He’d corrected both his language and math teachers, in a tone of voice that left no question about his disaffection with their performance.  Some of his classmates were amused, but most were simply shocked.  One did not correct a teacher in front of the whole class.

When Mrs. Beiler had called him on his attitude, he looked innocently surprised and replied that he thought she was supposed to be a purveyor of fact and there was no excuse for lackadaisical performance in an instructor of youth.  Weren’t the students she taught to be the leaders of the future?  How could anyone expect any improvement in society if people were working with incorrect information?

He spent several class periods in the vice principal and guidance counselor’s offices.  It didn’t seem to affect him in any way.  If anything, his fellow students’ amusement in their teachers’ discomfiture appeared to egg him on.  The last time he had corrected his calculus instructor, the snickers from the class had engendered a graceful turn and chivalrous bow.  And gotten him thrown out, again.  He was getting a reputation as a bad boy amongst his peers and a troublemaker with the staff.

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 5 ONG 05/24/20114
« Reply #18 on: Sat, May 24, 2014, 12:11 PM »
Looks like Loki has a lot to learn about social conduct and manners in general if he doesn't want to alienate everybody.  Of course, being a norse god, he believes he's above these puny humans, and he probably is.  He probably thinks he doesn't need any friends during his stay on Earth.

Can't wait to find out where you're takin' this. :)


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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 5 ONG 05/24/20114
« Reply #19 on: Sat, May 24, 2014, 03:55 PM »
 :roll  Well, yeah.  That is why Odin sent him to Earth.

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 6 ONG 05/26/20114
« Reply #20 on: Mon, May 26, 2014, 06:14 AM »
Bored, Loki couldn’t seem to help himself.  And he’d played a couple of minor pranks that caused the students to wonder who was the new joker in school.  Several suspected, but nobody had any real clues.  It seemed there was a new caper every week. 

A basketball exploded in the coach’s hands, covering him in dye in the school’s rival’s colours.  Mr Waters’ chair was wired so he received a shock as he sat down.  When he leapt out of his seat with a yell, hands on his ass, the entire class had erupted in shocked mirth.  One lunch period, the main dish looked like meatloaf, but turned out to be dog food.  A movie classic in honors English was switched with a couple of cartoons and a porn flick.  And so on. 

Things only got worse as the semester wore on.  All the lab mice from biology were released in the girls’ locker room.  Seniors regularly found their cars with the tires flattened, batteries disconnected, ignition wires loose.  The principal’s car was found at the end of one day completely disassembled and spread across the football field.  The Monday before finals week, every lock in the school was discovered to have been filled with superglue. 

Staff were going crazy.  Whomever was behind the pranks was completely out of control.  Teachers asked everyone, not hopeful of getting any answers, but growing desperate.  Even the students were discussing not much else, everyone with their own theories.

Liberty and Loki were finally talking again.  She’d managed to screw up her courage and ask him if he was behind all the escapades.  With a shake of his head and a crooked smile, he’d asked if she really believed he would stoop so low. 

“No, I guess not.  But I had to ask, you know?” she sighed.

“Of course you did.  You are the only person brave enough... and I am the newest person in town.”  Then he asked her if she would mind explaining what he had done to cause her silence for so long.  He knew something had upset her. 

It led to another dinner ‘date’, half study and half Liberty trying to make him see himself as others did.  If she hadn’t been so frustrated, she would have been amused.  She wasn’t sure if Loki really had no clue how his behaviour affected others or if he just didn’t care.  By the end of the evening, she felt if she never heard ‘why not’ in that particular condescending tone again, she would die happy.

She did manage to learn a little about him.  He had a family; three brothers, one slightly older and two much younger.  When she called him arrogant, he’d laughed.  “If you want arrogance, I should introduce you to Thor, my father’s firstborn and heir.  Now, he’s arrogant.  And he’d fit right in with your, what did you call them?  Jocks?  He’s big and built and blonde, like a lot of your people here.” 

Since he was talking, Liberty asked about the rest of his family.  Loki sighed and glanced away.  “They are all fair, as are most of my kind.”  He looked back at her with a sad little twist of his lips.  “I’m just as different at home as I am here.”

Liberty bit her lip and put her hand on his arm.  “You are so alone.  I’m sorry, Loki.  I think I understand a little better now.”  ‘His kind’?  What does he mean by that?

He stiffened and smiled, coldly.  “You needn’t be, my lady.  I don’t mind really.  I’m different because I’m better.  It is a burden I bear gladly.  You see, I have a purpose.  I will rule one day, no matter that my brother is the elder son.  He is not fit to be king.”

Liberty gasped, her imagined prince was real.  She wondered what country still had a monarch as its head.  Someplace in Europe?  Loki blinked, realising he had said too much.  Taking Liberty’s hand, he stared intently into her eyes.  “You will say nothing of this.  To anyone.  Correct?” 

“Uh... I won’t tell anyone.  Of course I won’t.”  She hastened to reassure him.  She suddenly felt weird, dizzy and a bit faint.  She frowned, what had they been talking about?   And Loki’s eyes had changed colours again.  How did he do that?

“Are you alright, Liberty?  Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle can be difficult,”  Loki sounded so solicitous.  She shook her head and refocused on their shared notebook.  “Um, could you go over it one more time?”

He did, making sure she understood it, finally.  Then he returned her home, this time before her curfew.  Again, waiting for her to reach the door before hopping back into ‘the death machine’ as her father insisted on calling the green sports car. 

They were studying together several times a week now.  With finals coming up and the end of the year, everyone was a bit more conscious of the need to concentrate on work.  Not that it was easy, what with improving weather and thoughts of lazy summer days ahead.  A lot of the seniors were finalizing plans for college, too. 

Unfortunately, the prankster continued his assault on the school campus and inhabitants, as well.  Still a complete mystery to the administration, some of the students were becoming more certain, but with no evidence, no one would name names.  Cord and his group of jock friends were sure after seeing the pleased look on Loki’s handsome face after several of the more personal tricks. 

He’d even made the mistake of calling the newcomer on it when his girlfriend was the butt of one of the nastier ones.  The joker had added green dye to her shampoo bottle and after cheer practice, she’d showered and come screaming out of the locker room in hysterics.  The gym teacher had taken her straight to the nurse’s office and they’d had to call paramedics to calm her down.

Cord saw Loki in the hall, watching silently, a nasty little satisfied smile on his face.  When their eyes met, Loki had lifted a brow, given a tiny nod and the smile had widened into a positively evil grin.  It was enough to convince the basketball star of his guilt.

Cord charged after the slowly ambling dark-haired stranger, intent on mayhem.  All his cronies, of course, followed right behind.  Everyone in the hall turned to watch.  Nothing like a good fight to perk up flagging interest in academia. 

And it wasn’t like the new kid didn’t deserve a good beat down.  Most of the students thought he was a jerk.  A smart-mouthed, arrogant ass who thought he was better than everyone else, just because he had money. 

The fight was over almost before it got started.  Cord caught up to Loki and reached for his shoulder.  Figuring to swing a surprised opponent around and into his other fist, he already had his right hand clenched.

But Loki made a sudden little jig of his upper body to one side, avoiding the other boy’s grasp.  A half turn and his arm shot out, catching Cord’s fist in his own hand.  With a subtle twist, he simply held it suspended between them while they glared at each other. 

Then he smiled.  “Revenging your woman, boy?  Admirable sentiment.  But you should have facts to wield as well as weapons before you choose an adversary.  I don’t believe you have either in this case.  Perhaps you should rethink your strategy.” 

Cord just snarled wordlessly, and now it was becoming apparent he was fighting to take back his hand.  His friends, who started to move forward, stopped when Loki’s icy gaze flicked across them.  They’d all suddenly realised the new kid was more than just a snob. 

He was dangerously strong, even if he didn’t appear so.  And that look in his eye was lethally violent.  One thing for certain, the bunch of bullies that called itself the varsity team recognised a real predator when they saw one.  They backed off, dragging their leader with them. 

The incident didn’t pass the instructors unnoticed, but Loki had done nothing that anyone could claim as inflammatory.  In fact, he had stopped a fight and defended himself without injuring his challenger, (except for some bruised knuckles and ego).  All quietly and while remaining unruffled himself. 

And now he had an instant fan club.  Every geek in the school heard the story within the next two periods.  By the end of the day, he’d actually gotten two requests for his autograph.  Bemused, he’d laughed and signed the kids’ notebooks.

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 6 ONG 05/26/20114
« Reply #21 on: Mon, May 26, 2014, 11:19 AM »
Quote
He had a family; three brothers, one slightly older and two much younger.

Loki has three brothers?  I thought Thor was Loki's only brother?

I wonder who the prankster is.  Of course I suspect Loki.  I mean, he's bored, and he thinks himself better than the others, so why shouldn't he be the one who's playing these silly practical jokes on the others.  Pretty risky, considered that it's only a matter of time till he's found out.

Quote
I’m different because I’m better.  It is a burden I bear gladly.

He's pretty full of himself, huh? :giggle


 
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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 6 ONG 05/26/20114
« Reply #22 on: Mon, May 26, 2014, 06:22 PM »
He is Loki, even if a younger version.  Actually he has five brothers.

Two Frost giants and three adopted.  Balder and his blind brother, Hodr were Odin and Frigga's sons, Laufey and Jarbauti had Helblindi and Byleistr as well as Loki.  But this Loki doesn't know about the other Jotun.

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 7 ONG 05/28/20114
« Reply #23 on: Wed, May 28, 2014, 05:50 AM »

While Loki seemed to have forgotten the hallway incident, Cord had not.  The big senior seethed, wanting revenge against the odd, new kid.  He had embarrassed him, not only in front of his friends, but where everyone in school had seen it.  He was going to get even somehow, someway, somewhere.

Then he thought he had found the perfect time. 

Loki had begun coaching Liberty in other of her classes, even though they were not shared.  She had just passed an English exam, an essay, with flying colours and he felt they should celebrate.  He asked what she wished to do and she shyly mentioned a movie she wanted to see. 

“Easily accomplished, sweet lady.  Tomorrow evening?  I shall make the request of your parents tonight.”  Loki gave her his by now classic short bow and a real smile.  Then took his leave with a jaunty, “I will drive you home after school and ask my boon then.”  She just shook her head at his words.  He was so strange... and she was beginning to really like be treated like a lady.

So excited to be going on a real date, Liberty had whispered the particulars to Charity in math.  She’d completely forgotten Purity sat right behind them.  And she overheard.

The cheerleader naturally told her boyfriend and he was so delighted to find a place outside of school to confront Loki, he’d swung her off her feet and kissed her right in the hall.  Earning both of them giggles and comments, the loudest of which was from his friend, Stone Mason.

And no, no one ever made fun of his name; at least not to his face and not more than once.  Stone was a wrestler, built like an ox and just as strong, if not much brighter.  “Aw, geez, guys!  Get a room!” was his brilliant comment, delivered at the top of his lungs.

                                                               
###

Given Loki’s way with words, it came as no surprise to Liberty when her parents agreed to his proposal.  She hurried through her chores and a quick snack as they planned on eating after the movie.  Rushing upstairs to shower and change, she almost bowled her youngest sister over.  “Out of the way, Pay.  I’m gonna be late if I don’t hurry.”

“Ooh, don’t wanna make your sweetheart wait, huh?” the thirteen year old sneered cheerfully.  “You got it bad, sis.” 

“Shush.  What do you know about it, anyway,”  Liberty chuckled back.  “We’re just friends.”

“I know you like him a lot!” she stated emphatically.  “He is cute.  And rich.  And that car... mmm, mmm, mmm, yummy.”

“Patience!”  Liberty planted her hands on her hips.  The youngest Patturn just ran down the stairs, still laughing.

Loki picked her up as usual, coming to the door with a bouquet for her mother.  He gave her parents their itinerary for the evening and an approximate time for their return.  And a promise to call if they might be delayed.  Her father grumped something, but Liberty caught a small twitch of his lips and he winked at her as she kissed both parents goodnight.  He was coming around.

Liberty couldn’t help but smile at her friend.  He sat through the movie silently, a quizzical frown on his face and an occasional soft sigh escaped him.  She was pretty sure he didn’t understand what was going on at all.  Until the big scene near the end where the hero decides to sacrifice himself for the love of a good woman.

Loki suddenly slipped his arm over her shoulders and pulled her closer.  “Are you looking for a man like that, sweet Liberty?  Do most girls?  It is not very realistic.”

Putting a hand over her mouth to stifle her giggle, she whispered up at him, “Of course not, silly.  It’s a movie, not real life.  But we all do like to dream about our Prince Charming, you know.”

Loki smiled down on her.  “What if you were to really meet one?” 

“I... I don’t know.  I’d treat him like everyone else, I guess.  Nicely, but not special.”  She stared at his widening smile.  “Are you trying to tell me something?” 

Loki only chuckled and leaned in to kiss her forehead.  “You are adorable.  So innocent and sweet.”  He left his arm around her for the rest of the movie, though.  Liberty nearly missed the finale, she was so nonplussed by his words and actions.  And a strange thrill was making her breathe much too fast.  She almost felt dizzy. 

They were discussing where to go for dinner as they came out of the movie theatre. Halfway to the parking area, they ran into Cord and crew.  He stepped in front of the couple, blocking them from reaching Loki’s car.  His friends moving into a semicircle around the pair, there was nowhere to run. 

Liberty gasped, grabbing Loki’s arm in fear.  Cord could be mean and his friends wouldn’t stop him from attacking her date.  In fact, they’d probably encourage him. 

“Hey, asshole!  You think you’re pretty clever, don’t you?”  Cord snarled, hunched up and obviously spoiling for a fight. 

“No, I don’t think so,”  Loki answered calmly.  “I am clever.”  He smiled, “Apparently this displeases you?”

“You bet your foreign ass!  And I’m gonna take it outta your hide.  I know you’re the one’s been playing all those tricks at school.  Disrupting class, destroying equipment, embarrassing Purity.  I’m gonna make you pay for that.”

“Really?  How?”  Loki sounded totally unbelieving, as condescending as ever.

“You deaf?  I said I’m gonna beat you up.”  Cord was getting red in the face, never a good sign.

“Ah.  I should be careful, were I you.  Such uncontrolled anger will cause you severe ill health one day,”  Loki taunted the big senior. 

“Yeah?  Well it ain’t gonna help you right now.  I’d worry about my own health, were I you,” Cord spit back.  He ripped off his varsity jacket and threw it to one of his buddies.  Then he cracked his neck and rolled his shoulders with a mean glint in his eyes.

“You, sir, are a coward.  I wonder, would you be so brave without yon pack of jackals to back you up?”  Loki grinned nastily.  “You remind me of my brother.  He’s a bit of a bully, too.  Likes showing off for his cadre of sycophants.”  The dark-haired boy’s face and voice suddenly went very cold.  “But he’s learned to leave me alone.”

Liberty stood immobile, shocked and frightened.  She’d never heard Loki sound like that, vicious and seriously dangerous.  She touched his elbow again.  “Loki, there are six of them.  Maybe we should...”

He never looked at her, staring Cord right in the eye.  “Go back into the theatre and wait, Liberty.  You should not be near me now.  I will return for you shortly.”

“But, Loki.”

“Go!”  That commanding tone made her scurry instantly.  She didn’t even realise she had until she was right through the doors. A hand covering her mouth, Liberty watched through the glass as her date calmly removed his suit jacket and tie.  His head turned slightly toward the nearest of the growing crowd of onlookers, but he never took his eyes off the big senior. 

“If you would be so kind?”  He held out jacket and tie to the girl.  She shivered, but stepped forward and took the proffered items.  Her companion then pulled her back out of the way.

Loki calmly removed the links from his french cuffs and slipped them into a pocket.  Still staring  at Cord, he carefully rolled up his sleeves.  Then he laced his fingers together, turned his hands inside out and pushed his arms straight out in front of himself.   

“Whenever you’re ready, fool.  You may now attempt to avenge yourself for whatever wrong you think I’ve done you.  I accept your challenge.  The next move is yours.”  Loki gave one of his trademark short, sharp bows without looking away from Cord. 

Furious, the big senior roared and charged straight at Loki.  Who wasn’t there any more.  He’d danced nimbly out of the way and turned to follow Cord’s rush.  Cord bounced off the building in front of him and spun around, sure he was going to be hit from behind.

Loki simply stood there, relaxed, wearing a cheerful grin.  He cocked his head to one side, “Would you like to try again?” 

Cord’s eyes narrowed and he snorted like an enraged bull.  He charged again, this time throwing his arm out to the side to catch Loki as he spun out of the way.  Loki did spin, but with Cord’s arm trapped between one of his and his body.  It whipped the senior around, stumbling out of control and slammed him into his friends, knocking him and two of them to the ground.

Bouncing happily, Loki crooned, “Third time’s the charm, they say.  Up for it?” 

Getting to his feet, Cord growled, blind with rage now.  “Stand still and fight like a man, you freak!” 

“What, and let you hit me?  I don’t think I’d care for that,”  Loki laughed.  Instantly going icily quiet, he added, “and you would care for the consequences even less.”

They were surrounded by a crowd of kids now, not only Cord’s friends.  When he glanced from side to side at two of his buddies, Loki slitted his eyes and cocked his chin down at an angle.  He never stopped smiling, however.  The crowd knew he understood what was coming.  Cord would rush him again, but this time his friends would join him. 

Because the single combatant didn’t seem to be backing down one inch, several of the spectators decided he deserved a chance at a fair fight.  It was always more fun to see a bully get his comeuppance anyway.  Hands reached out and grabbed Cord’s friends, holding them back.  This fight was going to be mano e mano, not a massacre for a change.

Loki’s eyes brightened and his smile widened into a tooth-baring grin as he saw that.  Now, he planted his feet and lifted hands curled into fists, a boxer’s pose.  “Come on, Cord.  Give me your best shot.  Bet I won’t even feel it,”  he egged the livid basketball player on. 

Cord moved in, swinging straight at Loki’s jaw.  Stunning everyone, the darker boy suddenly dropped his hands and took the shot.  His head did jerk to the side, but his feet never moved and he was still smiling as his face came back around to the front. 

“My turn,” he murmured and raised both brows for a moment.  His left fist came up in an uppercut that was so fast no one could follow the movement.  Cord’s head snapped straight back, his arms dropped to his sides and he fell over backwards, out cold before he even hit the pavement. 

People’s mouths dropped open and there was a collective gasp.  Cord packed a pretty good wallop and the new kid had just absorbed it like it was nothing.  Heads swung back to Loki as he delicately touched the corner of his lips.  He rubbed a tiny drop of blood between his fingers, glanced around at the crowd and snickered.  “He hits like a girl.”

Sauntering off, he collected his jacket and tie, rolled down his cuffs and refastened them.  He brought Liberty back to the car and the group still milling around the downed ballplayer parted to let them through.  Looking down at his unconscious opponent, Loki sighed.  “Perhaps someone with a phone should call for medical assistance?  I would prefer it not be me.”

With no more interest than that, he turned to Liberty.  “Now, my sweet, I believe you were going to introduce me to the joys of pizza?” 

She glanced back over her shoulder as he led her away.  “Oh, my God, Loki!  What happened?”

“Yes, I’m right here.  Well, he insisted on engaging in physical combat, so I felt I must oblige him.  Apparently my technique is better than his.” 

Liberty stared at him, stunned silent.  “You knocked him out!” 

“I did, indeed.”  He grinned and she caught a little wince.  “But I allowed him to hit me first.  Only fair.”

“You... what?”  She shrieked softly.  “He hit you?  Where?  Are you okay?”

“I’m quite well.  My jaw may be a little sore for a bit.  Not to worry.  It’s nothing.  I’ve endured much worse from my brother in training and play.”

“Should you take me home?  How are you going to eat?”  Liberty was leaning forward, trying to look at the far side of his face.  “I could get my mother to make you some soup.  And you should put some ice on where he hit you.”

“Please sit back and relax, sweet child.  You may examine me when we arrive at this parlour of pizza.  Right now you are interfering with my peripheral vision.”   Loki shushed her gently.

                                                                                       
###

They did eat pizza, with sodas and zeppoles for dessert.  Loki only chuckled when she fussed over the reddened mark on his cheek, insisting he hold his can of soda on it.  “If it will please you,” he grinned.  “It will be healed by tomorrow.”

He thanked her for the education into ‘fast food’ as she called it.  Saying he found the taste enjoyable, but the method of presentation a bit too messy.  And the fried dough for after was too sweet, he would have preferred honey to the powdered sugar.  All in all, not a bad meal in a pinch. Fine, occasionally, when out with friends, but not what he would choose for a steady diet.

Liberty laughed at him and shook her head.  “Loki, you are every mother’s dream child.  You are always so neat and clean, you’re unfailingly polite, you eat well, you’re smart and thoughtful.  Where in the world did you come from?” 

They were standing on her front porch, saying goodnight.  He looked down with a pleased smile and took her hand.  Liberty knew he was about to bow and kiss her fingers again; he always did just before leaving.  Tonight she suddenly decided she wanted something different. 

She stepped closer and reached up to wrap her arms around his neck.  Up on tiptoe, she barely reached his face.  Loki obligingly tipped his head down and she kissed him.  He responded slowly at first, then slipped his arms around her waist and pulled her tight to him. 

His lips were cooler than she expected, but his mouth was sweet.  He tasted like apples and summer berries.  She took a deep breath and caught his own personal scent.  Like pine forests and campfires, intriguing and enticing. 

With a sigh, he let her go.  Taking both her hands, he led her to the old swing at one side.  “I... am sorry for that, sweet Liberty.  I should not have taken advantage of your caring.”  He lifted a hand, stopping her protest.  Looked at his lap.

“I like you... very much.  You are not like most hu... people here.  You are aware I am not one of you.  I will return home soon, to my own family.  I... would not see you hurt... by my leaving.”  She was surprised to see he was having difficulty finding words. 

Glancing up with a sad smile, Loki murmured, “I cannot be your Prince Charming, sweet Liberty.  But I would like to continue to be your friend.  I’ve never really had one of my own before.”

LIberty felt awful.  She had pushed him too far.  And she’d completely forgotten he’d told her he was not here permanently.  Now he was uncomfortable because he was afraid he had hurt her feelings. 

Liberty threw one hand over her mouth, gasping quietly, and tearing up.  Loki naturally misunderstood and the pain she saw reflected in his eyes, (they’ve gone teal again!), made her slightly sick.  “No, no!  This was my fault.  I forgot you can’t stay.  I would love to stay friends, Loki.  Really.” 

“I shall leave you now.  I regret ruining your evening.  Perhaps you will forgive me tomorrow, eh?”  Loki smiled and stood.  “Good night, sweet Liberty.”  Before she could say more he’d fled, jumping into his car, and for the first time, roaring off in a squeal of smoking rubber. 

Her father appeared in the doorway, scowling.  His face changed to parental concern when he saw his daughter’s tears.  Hand still over her face, Liberty just ran past him, shaking her head.  She ran upstairs and threw herself on her bed, finally allowing herself to sob her heart out into her pillow.

She had hard time falling asleep that night.  Just lay there, staring up at the stars through her window and remembering all the odd things he’d said.  He was so different.  She realised he was right; they were too unalike, from two different worlds. 

Liberty sat up with a start.  Two different worlds.  Could it be?  Literally?  No, it wasn’t possible.  She thought about all the things that made Loki unlike anyone else she’d ever known. 

His strange dining habits; the way he didn’t know about normal kids’ favourites... she’d had to show him how to eat a burger and the pizza.  For a boy his age and size, he ate very little.  Always eating those gold apples, too. 

He was really smart, so intelligent he was smarter than most, if not all of the teachers.  And he had no clue how to act around people, always so formal.  He never relaxed.  She suddenly remembered the way he always sat, silently watching, as if learning how to behave.  That odd comment at the movies, about meeting her Prince Charming, and then tonight, saying he couldn’t be because he was going to leave.

He had referred to his family as his ‘kind’.  She’d wondered at the time what he’d meant.   He was a prince, she suddenly remembered him saying so, right before he’d stared into her eyes and she got dizzy.  Could he affect her mind?  Then, again tonight, she would swear he had been about to say she wasn’t like most humans, before he’d corrected himself.   

After the fight, he’d laughed at her worry.  His bruised face would be healed by tomorrow?  People didn’t heal that fast.  And the shot to the jaw from Cord, who could knock out a horse with a punch, hadn’t even fazed him. 

He was cool to the touch; his body when she’d pressed up against him was so hard.  She’d thought it was just muscle, but maybe it wasn’t.  And while she really liked it, his scent was strange, too.  Wild, like being out in the woods, earthy and fresh, not the least sharp and on the sour side, like most boys.

His beautiful, changeable eyes.  That one really got her.  People’s eyes did not change colours from one instant to the next, but Loki’s did. 

“Oh, my God!”  Liberty whispered to herself.  She started, a shiver going through her.  Tonight, as he led her to his car and she asked what happened, she’d blurted that.  His answer had been lost in what he’d said afterward.  But his first response had been an acknowledgement.  “Yes, I’m here,” he’d said.  Had he meant what she was now thinking? 

Oh, that’s ridiculous, she mused.  It couldn’t be true.  But she lay back down and went to sleep to dream of Loki and stars and crowns.

Offline Montgomery Burns 13

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 7 ONG 05/28/20114
« Reply #24 on: Wed, May 28, 2014, 10:32 AM »
Quote
“Are you looking for a man like that, sweet Liberty?  Do most girls?  It is not very realistic.”

Poor Loki, it looks like he had to suffer through a typical chick flick. lol  But I guess it's something you have to experience at least once. :)

Love the fight scene. :giggle

So Liberty suspects that Loki's from a different realm?  Interesting. Can't wait to find out what Loki has to say about that.

Love it so far, and can hardly wait for the next update. :ggrin Yes, I am greedy.


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Offline ban sidhe

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 7 ONG 05/28/20114
« Reply #25 on: Wed, May 28, 2014, 10:53 AM »
yeah, can't you imagine how someone from a warrior culture would be confused?

He is young here and hasn't yet refined his 'mind-control' technique, so it sometimes wears off.
She remembers things he's accidentally let slip and they are beginning to add up.

It's ok, I like you greedy.

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 8 ONG 05/30/20114
« Reply #26 on: Fri, May 30, 2014, 04:48 AM »
Liberty got several more shocks the next day at school.  Cord was missing and she found out from Charity in English he’d been admitted to the hospital with a concussion.  They thought he would be fine, but were keeping him for a day or two for observation.  His jaw was cracked, so he’d be eating soft foods for a while.  And he refused to say how he’d gotten hurt.

Everyone knew anyway.  The kids at the theatre had spread the story immediately.  When Loki walked into lunch, she was embarrassed to see him get a round of applause.  He only smiled his secret little smirk and went to his usual, private table.  He wasn’t left alone today, though. 

Several guys went over and shook his hand.  His perfectly normal hand with no bruises on the knuckles.  His cheek looked completely normal, too.  So, he was serious, she realised.  He does heal overnight.  Well, that’s not normal.

Cord did return the following Monday, four days after the altercation outside the theatre.   He and Loki completely ignored each other.  His face was bruised, a lovely combination of purple, blue and greenish yellow.  He was quiet and sullen, not responding to taunts or solicitous questions.   And he might even miss the final game of the season unless Coach decided his hand had healed enough. 

               
###

Life settled down into relative normalcy.  Bored students, tired teachers, everyone just marking time until the year was over.  The weather wasn't helping, with warm nights and warmer, sunny days.  Now was planting and growing season, lots to do after school was finished for many of the students. 

Amazingly, the pranks stopped as suddenly as they had begun.  Not until the actual week of finals, but all the teachers breathed a sigh of relief.  It would have been impossible to keep the students concentrating on work with more of that insanity going on.  Not that anyone of them had the slightest clue of who the perpetrator might have been.

It was a lot more difficult to keep track of the senior students, too.  They only had to show up for the classes they had tests in that day.  Which meant that kids were coming and going all day long.  Some stayed for a while or came early, others showed up just before their exams and left immediately after.

Lunches and study halls were noisy, people exchanging summer information and signing yearbooks.  Everything normal until Loki walked into a room.  The underclassmen especially sought him out.  He’d become something of a cult phenomenon, just because he’d faced down a bully.  Now everyone wanted their book signed, even though he had no picture since he’d arrived so late in the year.  It amused him to hold court in front of school where all the seniors could see him, the little people’s new hero.

                  
###

Finally, all the testing was done.  Now, the only reason you saw a senior was because they’d shown up for gown fittings or commencement practice.  Graduation ceremonies would take place two weeks from the following Friday evening, on a Saturday afternoon, so everyone’s parents could attend. 

Liberty missed seeing him every day.  He did call her at home once or twice, but it was still a lonely two weeks for her.  Even though she was busy with practice and having her senior formal gown altered, chatting with her girlfriends and making summer plans, she still felt the loss of his quiet company. 

She had been asked to the dance by several boys, but hadn’t given anyone an answer yet.  She was hoping one special person would ask.  But he didn’t.  A horrible thought occurred to her one afternoon.  What if he didn’t know about it?

So she waited until everyone was out of the house and called him.  Stumbling around the question, nervous about finding out if he was going, if he knew there would be a final dance.  She was so tongue-tied, Loki had amusedly asked her if she had marbles in her mouth. 

It was such a mother-like question, she stopped and laughed.  “Is there a specific reason for this call, sweet Liberty, or did you just miss the sound of my voice?” he asked, chuckling too.

“Oh, I give up.  I'll just have to ask you.  Do you know about the prom?  Were you planning on going?  Do you need a... a date?”

His answer didn’t surprise her at all.  “What is a prom, lovely lady?” Even over the phone she could see his head tilt and that puzzled little smile, the lifted eyebrow. 

So she giggled and explained.  “Ah, I see.  Is it your wish that I should escort you?” 

Liberty hesitated, “Um, well, you know.  I... uh... thought...” 

Loki laughed again.  “I would be delighted.  Explain to me what I need to know.  When is this ball, where will it be held and what should I bring?  May I assume formal attire is required?  What time should I arrive at your home?”

“Are you sure?  You don’t have to go if you have other plans.  I only wondered if you knew...”

“I do now.  And no, I had no other plans.  I would be honoured to squire you to your ‘prom’.”  They spent another few minutes discussing details, like her dress and makeup colours so he wouldn't clash, whether she preferred a wrist or shoulder corsage, etc. 

She had just hung up, beaming like the sun, when her mother and sisters came in from the garden.  Ginny took one look at her daughter’s delighted face and she knew.  Liberty was squirming in happiness, she bounced where she stood and her mother knew if she didn’t ask and soon, the child was going to explode.

She smiled at her eldest and sighed.  “Loki?  He asked you to the prom?”  Liberty just squealed and grabbed her nearest sister, swinging Harmony around and flinging beans everywhere. 

“Yes, yes , yes!” she caroled.  She didn’t bother to correct her mother and say that she had asked him.  She knew many girls did these days, but that would not be acceptable to her parents.  They were so old fashioned in some ways. 

Liberty helped her sister pick up all the beans they’d spilled and even helped her wash and prepare them for freezing.  Harmony only laughed at her and let her help.  She had to burn off all that excitement somehow.  Might as well be in something useful.

The middle sister had recognised that Liberty had seemed a bit sad lately and she thought it might have been related to her charming, handsome, if slightly odd friend.  She was sure they’d had some kind of argument, but Liberty wouldn’t talk about the night she’d come home and after spending time on the porch with him, run upstairs in tears.  Harmony knew all about the theatre fight, too, since she was a sophomore. 

Now that things seemed better, she was happy for her older sister.  Liberty was always so... so good.  She never did anything wrong, always got her chores done, brought home excellent grades, listened to her sisters’ woes and helped them with homework and other things.  She was the best big sister anyone could want and it made Harmony glad to see her back to normal.

Offline Montgomery Burns 13

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 8 ONG 05/30/20114
« Reply #27 on: Fri, May 30, 2014, 10:05 AM »
Quote
It amused him to hold court in front of school where all the seniors could see him, the little people’s new hero.

 :giggle Looks like he has won his own little kingdom, huh?

Quote
Graduation ceremonies would take place two weeks from the following Friday evening, on a Saturday afternoon, so everyone’s parents could attend.

Will Loki's parents also attend?
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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 8 ONG 05/30/20114
« Reply #28 on: Fri, May 30, 2014, 10:31 AM »
 ;D  lol getting ahead of things, Monty.

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Re: [Loki] The Error of His Ways (G) chapter 8 ONG 05/30/20114
« Reply #29 on: Fri, May 30, 2014, 10:54 AM »
Odin might be kinda out of place at a high school graduation ceremony :grin