The Heatwave (Loki x Reader)
Or, That Time You Saw A Different Side of Loki
Word Count: 2.8k
A/N: It’s been a long time, but I’m slowly coming back :’) thanks for being patient with me folks. In return, I hope you enjoy this lil fic — it involves Jotun!Loki ;))
Out of all the days for the air conditioner to stop working, of course it had to happen during the hottest week of the year.
Tony had built countless Iron Man suits, engineered a new renewable energy source strong enough to power all of New York, and yet somehow — four days of attempted repairs later — he still wasn’t able to fix the Compound’s air conditioning system.
The temperatures were skyrocketing in New York, hovering steady in the 100s for the last few days. At first it was nice to have the strong heat filter through the building. After a summer that began mostly with cloudy days and sometimes stormy skies, the sunlight was a welcome gift to you and the rest of the Avengers. Sure the air conditioning was broken in the building, but at least it finally felt like summer, right? Going a few days in the heat wouldn't be all that bad.
Your optimism quickly melted away the longer the sun shone, however, and soon enough you found yourself in a completely different mood.
“Okay, who took all the ice?”
You shifted your gaze up from your sprawled-out position on the floor as you heard Bucky’s angry demand. He was leaning so far in the freezer, he was practically lying in it.
A few halfhearted shrugs rippled their way throughout the handful of Avengers scattered around the living room with you.
“The ice tray was full an hour ago!” Bucky jabbed a finger accusingly at the now-empty spot in the freezer. “And there were five ice packs in here as well. They're gone now. Where are they?"
As if on cue, Thor lumbered into the living room with an ice pack, which he had fastened around his head using a T-shirt to keep it in place. The other four remaining ice packs were attached in a similar fashion around his arms and legs, bearing an odd resemblance to the floaties toddlers wear while swimming. As if that wasn't enough, Thor was also hugging a bag containing all of the Compound's remaining ice against his chest, as if it were a teddy bear.
Thor looked like, in every way possible, an absolute child.
You could almost feel the prickling anger radiating off the Avengers' glares as everyone watched Thor plop himself into an empty armchair. Or... maybe that was the heat making you feel itchy. At this point, it was so hot that it was hard to tell where the sun ended and where your body began.
"I swear on the gods," Thor mumbled absentmindedly. "It was never even this hot on Muspelheim. I'll bet Surtur himself would've rather died than endure this heat..."
"Are five ice packs really necessary, though?" You demanded, propping your chin up on your hands as you glared at the Asgardian from your position on the floor. "What about the rest of us?"
Thor simply dismissed you with a noodle-like wave of his hand.
"Your mortal bodies burn far less energy than mine." Thor reclined back in his chair, moving his ice pack so it covered his eyes like a sleeping mask. "You'll be fine. Myself, on the other hand-"
"Those ice packs had my name on them!" Bucky exclaimed, stomping into the living room. "I specifically said not to touch them-"
"If anyone deserves ice packs right now," Tony interrupted with a sharp glare. "It's me. I bought the fridge, after all. My kitchen, my rules."
"Well then, what about me, huh?" Bruce nearly sprung off the couch, and your eyes widened in alarm as you noticed the edges of his skin had a sudden green tinge. "I was the one who made the ice, I deserve the bag."
"Absolutely not." Thor tightened his grip on the bag of ice in emphasis. "I found the bag first."
"Oh my god, you guys." You sighed, pushing yourself up off the floor as you rolled your eyes. Even the little amount of physical exertion it took to get back into a standing position made you feel tired. "Just make more ice, it'll be ready in a few hours."
"That's too long of a wait," Tony answered, sprawling dramatically over his section of a couch as if to emphasize his point. "I'll have melted right into the floor before the ice is done."
You shook your head, the fog of the heat sparking your irritation like a lit match to gasoline. "Maybe you should've invested in a faster ice maker then. Or at least a second freezer."
"Hey." Tony pointed a finger accusingly at you, only to be met by stifled giggles from the other Avengers.
"Better yet..." You swiped a hand over your forehead, cringing at the sheen of sweat that now stuck to your palm. It was too hot to even simply stand in one spot. "...you could've designed an air conditioning system that would, oh I don't know, actually work."
You must have uttered the magic words -- or perhaps 'cursed words' was a better term in this situation -- because a newfound wave of bickering emerged from your teammates, all of them buzzing in irritation like little mosquitoes.
Your patience had already been worn thin over the last few days. You didn't know how much more arguing you could tolerate.
You watched Thor angrily lob an ice pack at Bucky, only for his expression to morph into disappointed shame as Bucky triumphantly grasped the frozen treasure like a trophy, and you realized now would be a good time to go back to your own room.
It was a few degrees hotter in there, you thought to yourself bitterly as you walked down the hall, but at least you didn't have to share the space with these children.
As you passed by Loki's room, your pace faltered as you noticed his door had been left open.
He was hunched over on his bed, eyebrows furrowed in concentration as he lost himself in the worn paperback novel that sat in his lap. Your eyes widened as you took in the god's outfit.
He was wearing a thin sweater and jeans. Jeans. In 100 degree weather.
"You're insane." You couldn't help but splutter as you continued staring at Loki in disbelief from the doorway. Loki smirked, setting his book to the side before getting up to greet you with a friendly nod. You caught him look you up and down, before his features creased into a slight frown.
"And you... look like a wilted plant. Y/N, are you alright?”
You gave Loki a small shrug. "The kids are arguing in the living room again, Thor took all our ice packs, it feels like we have heated floors everywhere, and to be honest, I've started to feel a little dizzy."
Loki sighed as he took in your burst of information. With a small smile, he guided you into his room with a gentle hand on your shoulder.
"What about you?" You asked, gesturing to Loki's outfit. "Aren't you ready to pass out in that? Did you open a portal to New York in December and not tell me about it?"
Loki chuckled, the sound a warm gift to your ears compared to the screeching that had gone on earlier in the living room amongst the other Avengers.
"I'm different, I suppose."
"Well, whatever it is," you replied, stretching out on Loki's bedroom floor in an attempt to cool off as best as you could. "You and Thor certainly don't share the same temperature genes. You should see him, he's whining like a baby and he's got an icepack on each limb."
Loki smirked at your words, and you could've sworn you caught a flash of nervousness behind Loki's eyes. You couldn't help but wonder if you had said something wrong, but the emotion vanished as quickly as it came.
"I don't know how much longer I can survive in this heat." You mumbled as you laid down on your stomach and rested your head on your arms. "I haven't slept in nearly three days, I'm losing my mind."
Loki was sitting behind you, out of your range of vision, but you heard him let out a rather ragged and conflicted sigh. You frowned, unable to discern what exactly was going through the god's mind.
"I think I can help you," Loki began, his voice sounding rather constrained. Soft footsteps padded over to you, and you looked up just as he extended a hand towards you.
"How?" You asked with a frown as he helped you back up onto your feet. "Have you got a human-sized freezer you're hiding in your bathroom? Or better yet, a working air conditioner no one knows about?"
You laughed lightly at your own sarcasm, but your smile quickly faltered as you noticed how tense Loki had suddenly become. You were close enough to him now that you noticed he was clenching his jaw, and he kept picking at his hands.
"Icanhelpyou." Loki repeated, the words emerging out of his mouth in a jumbled mess. "I- I can help you. I can't bear watching you suffer in this heat. But you have to promise me something."
"Anything, Loki. You're my best friend, you know I'd do anything to help you in return."
"You must keep your eyes closed the entire time."
You blinked in surprise. You weren't sure what request you were expecting from the Asgardian, but it certainly wasn't that.
"Promise me that, Y/N." Loki demanded urgently. His hands gripped your shoulders tightly as his wide eyes searched your own. "Swear on the Nine Realms that you won't open your eyes, no matter what."
There was something so solemn, so incredibly fragile that had surfaced in Loki's eyes that you didn't even think to question him any further. Whatever this was about, you knew it was serious.
"Okay." You whispered. "I won't open my eyes, I promise."
Loki nodded, pressing his lips together into a thin line. It seemed as though the thoughts in his mind were close to being physically painful, and it hurt your heart to watch him go through this.
"You don't have to help me, you know." You closed your own hand over his for emphasis. "I'll be fine, the heat will subside in a few days."
"No." Loki's tone was stern. Final. There was no arguing with him. "I want to help you. I will help you."
You nodded, giving the Asgardian's hand one final squeeze as an attempt at comfort. With a deep breath, you closed your eyes.
You could feel your heart begin to pound in your chest as a thick silence enveloped the two of you. You waited for any sort of extreme event -- maybe a bright flash of light or sudden noise -- but nothing happened.
"Your eyes are closed?"
You couldn't help the small smile that formed on your lips when you heard Loki's question. His voice sounded so small, if it weren't for how serious he was being about this entire situation, you would've found it almost adorable.
"Yes, Loki, my eyes are closed. You can test me, if you like."
"...how many fingers am I holding up?"
You snickered, shaking your head at Loki's response.
The silence resurfaced once more, this time bringing with it a slight chill in the air. You sighed in relief, feeling your body relax ever-so-slightly as the air became cooler than it had been moments ago.
"If this is one of your illusions, I'm extremely impressed." You whispered. You were expecting Loki to chuckle, or perhaps boast even further about his powers, but all you got in reply was a bitter scoff.
"This does not merit awe or any such feelings." Loki mumbled. "Now, hold your hands out for me."
You extended your hands, perhaps a little faster than you had anticipated. Your fingers grazed something ice cold for a brief moment, the sensation feeling almost like a burn in contrast to the warmth of your hands.
You gasped as you jolted back, and as your reflexes kicked in, you accidentally opened your eyes.
The person in front of you was Loki, but then again... it wasn't.
His skin was now cobalt blue, with intricate markings spiralling their way up his hands and tracing the outlines of his cheekbones and forehead. His nails were such a dark shade of blue that they were almost black, and his eyes.
They were completely red, and filled with a mix of sadness and horror and betrayal as your gaze locked on his.
"I'm so sorry." You gasped, immediately squeezing shut your eyes once more. "I didn't mean to do that, it was a reflex, I didn't see anything-"
"Stop lying." Loki spat. "You can open your eyes. I know you saw."
Your eyes fluttered open slowly, but you kept your gaze glued to the ground.
"I'm really sorry, Loki." You whispered, feeling the sting of tears fill your eyes. It seemed as though his hurt expression had burned itself into your mind. "I broke my promise."
"Are you afraid?"
You looked up at Loki with a frown, his question catching you off guard.
"I'm sad that I hurt you. I regret moving as fast and as suddenly as I did, I regret not fighting my reflexes, but no. I'm not afraid."
Loki's gaze was unwavering, yet there was an absence in his eyes. It seemed as though he was somewhere far away in a memory.
"You should be."
You stepped forward, bridging the distance between the two of you, and held both of Loki's hands in your own. You inhaled sharply as your skin made contact with his and an icy chill coursed up your arms, but you didn't flinch away.
In fact, Loki was the one who tried to flinch away, but you kept your grip steady as you laced your fingers through his.
"I trust you with everything I am." You whispered. "I know you'll never hurt me. This is no exception."
"I'm a monster."
Loki's voice cracked almost imperceptibly on that last word. You shook your head, adamant to prove him wrong.
"This side of you is just as kind and loving as the other." You smiled softly, tracing a finger lightly across the ridges that marked his cheekbones. Loki turned his now-pained gaze to the ground as you caressed his cheek soothingly.
"You wanted to help me feel better, even if it meant revealing the side of you that you hated the most. No monster would do that, Loki. Hell, I don't even think some of the Avengers would be willing to risk their comfort levels the way you just did. And you did it all selflessly, because you didn't want me to overheat.
"In fact," you continued, smiling in awe as you studied the markings on Loki's face. "You're absolutely beautiful, both on the inside as well as the outside. You put Greek sculptures to shame, you're a work of art."
Loki let out a small choked gasp, and your heart skipped a beat as you noticed a few stray tears begin trailing their way down his cheeks. You brushed them away with a slow swipe of your thumb before leaning forward to kiss his cheek.
"Whatever events may have happened in the past to cause you to feel the way you do," you whispered, wrapping your arms around Loki and pulling him closer to you. "They're over now. The hurt ends here. I'll make sure of it."
"How?" Loki didn't even try to hide the disbelief in his voice. You pulled back from your hug, only to trail your hands down his arms and hold his hands tightly in your own.
"By being the first to love you as you are. Every part of you."
Silence passed between the two of you as Loki eyes allowed you to glimpse the war he was currently fighting internally with himself and his past. You knew this wasn't easy for him.
"You don't have to say anything, but I just want you to know that I'm here for you. This doesn't in any way change how I feel about you, Loki."
As silence settled between the two of you like little particles of dust, Loki stepped forward and caught you off guard. He pressed a delicate kiss to your forehead before wrapping you gently in his arms.
“Thank you for cooling me off, by the way.” You whispered with a small smile. “It’s only been a few minutes, but I’m already feeling much better.”
“I’m glad to hear that.”
“…Loki?” You asked as you rested your cheek against the god’s shoulder.
“This is way nicer than tying ice packs around my arms and legs. You give good hugs.”
That earned a genuine laugh from Loki, and although he didn’t reply, he gave you a gentle squeeze in acknowledgement.
Despite the chill that ran through your body as Loki remained pressed up against you in an embrace, you had never felt such intense warmth inside your heart.
This side of Loki — his true form — was more beautiful than you could’ve ever imagined.
TAGLIST: @startrekkingaroundasgard @justasmisunderstoodasloki @delightfulheartdream @pastyoverlord265 @lowkeytesss @levylovegood @that-little-zebunny
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