1963-09-06 - The Selfish One
Summary: After Loki's visit with his mother, Frigga, he goes to speak with the All-Father to bring him tidings from Midgard. Arguments ensue and accusation of treason is leveled at the Trickster. Punishment? Dungeon. (OOC note: Odin spoofed by Thor.)
Related: More Muspelheim/Asgard plot things.
Theme Song: None
louis thor 

The halls in this area of the palace, while familiar to the Prince, are a little emptier of the public, of courtiers, and even of those who directly serve within the palace. These are the more personal areas reserved for the ranks of Royalty; and even then, only for those near the All-Father and his Queen. Loki can easily tell that he's not being led to the Hall of Audiences, but rather a smaller room. It's Odin's 'war room', where he meets with his closest advisors and once they're dismissed, he mulls things over. Maps of the Realms hang there, and it is rare that even Frigga, the Queen, passes through those heavy doors. It is spartan, yet regally designed; a haven for warriors.

As the approach, Loki's guards begin to slow, allowing the Prince to continue on, encouraged with bows from the pair. In case he was wondering? "My Prince, the All-Father is within."

And within the All Father is. His voice sounds even through the closed doors, rising in heat that is no doubt due in part of the news recently received. Only in part, that is.

"If that is their answer, then we shall make answer to it." Close clipped words; each is seemingly bit off and sent on its way to its intended 'victim'. If there is response, well.. it isn't heard. How could it compete?


A solemn nod is given to the two guards as Loki accepts the relinquishing of their charge. He continues on the last of that distance to the doors and shifts his stance to one of relaxed poise, his hands resting at the small of his back with his fingers interlaced. Those green eyes are locked upon those huge double doors, and his gaze is rich with such focus that one might imagine even that great portal shattering under the weight of his regard.

Yet he waits.

For a moment when the voices falter, or perhaps when the doors open to admit him. It is all propriety now, precision in manner that is required. He holds precisely six feet away from those doors and directly in the middle of them…

And then when the voices come to a rest, or he is bidden. He'll enter. Will he speak? Not at first until addressed, especially considering with other individuals present. At the most he'll offer a single murmured, "All-Father." And make himself removed from the flow of conversation until hailed.


The view, now, is the All Father standing before a table with maps millennia old, and one of the older advisors there, looking a little concerned. He opens his mouth as if to give answer, anything to talk Odin from the path that it appears the King is taking, but when the entrance of the Prince? Well, it becomes something of a stalemate of rank and courtesy. Royalty trumps appointed advisors, even those that have been around for some time, and while the man wants to respond again he is silenced. Instead, Odin receives a deep bow from the man and the response is simply, "I will give you my report on the readiness, your Majesty, when I review the troops." A glance is given to Loki, and perhaps there is a touch of disappointment in those eyes that can be discerned? That son.

Odin waves the man away, not yet acknowledging the presence of Loki. The advisor does, of course, and after a sweeping bow to the All Father, gives a proper obeissance to the Prince before he departs.

One minute passes, two, and Odin is motionless, staring at the table now with his back turned towards the door and Loki before, "You've returned." It's a statement. "Why?" There's a moment before, "To torment your mother more? To have left without word, to hide yourself like a child."


"It is good to see you as well, 'father'." Loki keeps his stance as precise and as controlled as when he was without now that he is within. Oh those advisors were given the proper nods of acknowledgement, even a smile to elder Horik. Yet those minutes had passed in silence, barely a sound of breath and no shuffle of step nor signal of impatience. Feet flat, eyes forward, expression calm. It is so even now.

"I bring news from Midgard." He offers as an avenue of discussion, seeking to shift these words away from him, away from what passed the day before he left and what caused his century long absence. "Your son," Not his brother. "Presumed to be out of the shadow of your shielding hand has gained the attention of those in Muspelheim."

A pause, but then he adds quietly. "I stood with him. I feel I owed him. And you. That much."


Odin isn't done, not by a longshot, and he turns around finally to look at the Prince, his son yet so very distant from him as such. His expression is schooled, the single eye is looking at the Prince steadily. Loki has always been the better student in court; that had never gone unnoticed. Unremarked, yes. Expected, yes. Yet Thor always fell short due to his emotions.

'Your son.'

"Thor is beyond my shadow by his own choosing." Odin chooses his words carefully, picking them deliberately. "Yet Muspelheim is incapable of touching him." Thanks, apparently to Loki, but isn't that what they're supposed to do? "They are moving, thinking they have allies in the Jotun. Soon enough, we shall see if they do or not. It has been some time, but I am sure the sting is still felt on Jotunheim." Too afraid to fight, perhaps?

"It is some consolation that you continue to have a concept of family, Loki. Your brother does not doubt your devotion." Odin takes a deep breath and wanders, his path simply making him pace as his eye now stays turned away from him. "Is that where you've been all this time? Midgard?"


The acknowledgement of his words is a simple nod that is primarily from the eyes, held low as the All-Father speaks to signal agreement. Indeed such is so that Muspelheim has had its movement checked, yet the danger exists still, for Surtur is not one to be trusted. The mention of Jotun, however, causes Loki's eyebrows to rise slightly when he looks back up. The information is digested, collated, and already a few thoughts flit through his mind how to turn such to their advantage.

Yet it stumbles for him upon the concept of 'their' advantage. For is he of them? Odin can perhaps see that doubt, the faintest cloud flicker over Loki's features, barely there. Yet of his family only his mother knows him the better.

"Midgard. And beyond. Though most of my time has been spent amongst the mortals."

His jaw sets, and it' then his turn to break that so carefully cultivated illusion as for once… his emotions reach his eyes. "Why didn't you tell me?"

A pause.


"All those years… I wished only to be worthy of you. Only to know I never would… never could be."


It could have been a test, or it could be the truth, the mention of Jotunheim. Odin does very little, says very little unless there's purpose behind it, cruel or otherwise. He's a man born and raised in battle and in rule; his subjects can love him or hate him, but he is still the All Father. That eye studies Loki and there are undoubtedly gives that he simply doesn't catch. Couldn't catch. Only Frigga would know for sure, and in the battles fought over this boy grown to a man, her silence has defended and protected the young Prince.

"Midgard." The sound is one of disgust. He's quick, however, "I don't dislike Midgard, Loki. But this insistance that they're the least bit worthy of more that just a passing fancy." No. "You and your brother."

Odin is on the move, as it were, pacing, his hands behind his back, very much like his son's were. In fact, if Frigga was there, she'd do the maddening thing (yet again) and make note of the similarities in posture, in bearing, in speech.

"Why should I have told you, Loki?" Odin finds his steps taking him around the table; something to put between the pair. "So you could have felt an outsider in your youth, when all that you required was acceptance? Wasn't that enough? You are a Prince of Asgard, Loki. Raised as your brother was. Yet for some reason, some unknown reason, you feel slighted. Wronged." His voice rises in the room, the single blue eye not leaving him now.

"And at the moment when you discovered the truth, you left. Vanished. Disappeared, leaving your mother to worry as to what you would do in your misery. She'd taught you well, Loki. You even hid from Heimdall, so even he couldn't allay her fears." Disappointment indeed tinges his words, the tenor of his voice. Odin takes a deep breath, his jaw tensing before, "And you knew Thor was gone from us and still you hid. Imagine what your response would have been if we told you as an impetuous youth."


Jaw setting, and tendons bunching, Loki maintains that veneer of calm, though his brows knit together as he watches the man move and walk… and speak such words. The trickster god has no mirth in him now, there is no levity, no touch of wit. Now there is only that intense gaze and his marked frown that gives voice enough to what lies within his thoughts.

A moment passes once Odin finishes speaking, and then he gives a nod. "I left so I could make my peace. And I have. I left so I would not hurt… so I would do nothing brash."

But then he cuts off the conversation sharply, a hand lashing to the side as if cutting any protests from himself or from the All-Father as he says simply, sharply, "I come to find your mind in regards to Thor. To see if you still hold plans to force his return. I am aware you set Amora upon her task, and it is likely this conflict with Muspelheim is purely to create a pressure upon him to come to the defense of home and family."

Loki's eyes narrow. "I understand you must have your lone heir back within your control. The law of state is supreme. Yet what you engage in now is naught more save prideful conflict."


There is reason why many times, Odin has forbidden Loki to speak in court. He has a manner to him and an ability that brings conversations and thoughts around, but today simply is not that day. Instead, there must be something in those words that brings the All Father up sharply, blue eyed blazing.

"So you could make your peace. Selfish. Vanity. And you accuse me of prideful conflict, Loki? You leave, turning your back, and you accuse me of doing things out of pride?" Odin stares for a long moment and shakes his head, his voice firm. "Thor belongs here. Midgard is a dalliance and one that Asgard can ill afford. If Amora can bring him here, then she will be forgiven as she is serving in the interests of the Realm."

That eye narrows and his words rise again, "He belongs home. If you have chosen a life apart from Asgard, then so be it. That is for you. Your selfish needs, but we cannot afford two to be so self-serving, Loki. Not now."


"Pride… selfish?!" Loki's eyes blaze and it's only then that anger finally takes him as he advances a step towards Odin, his expression wild. "It is prideful to realize your life is a lie, and instead of hurting the family that sheltered you to try and control your dark urges?"

His hand lifts and tightens into a fist, then lashes to the side. "Selfish to withdraw from the succession so there would be no chaos, no confusion in the passing of reign from a father to a son?"

"You old fool!" His hands tighten, gnarling into fists. "If I had wished…" He turns his head to the side and only then bites down those words.

A moment passes as he breathes hard, looking down and to the side. Then he looks back up. "You, a man whose children despise him so that both have passed on the golden throne of Asgard, simply so they can be away from you accuse them… of pride, even as you prepare to thrust your realm into yet another war upon the altar of it."

Then, he adds, quieter now. "Fool." More perhaps… to himself.


"A lie?" Odin advances now, and he's mad, his voice rising to the heavens. "You dare tell me that your life here was a lie. That each and every day you were taught right and wrong, taught at the side of your brother what it meant to be a Prince of Asgard? Lies?! All lies?" There's a moment when the All Father seems to consider his words, but that tempo and anger simply isn't abating.

"You pulled yourself from that succession, Loki. You. You ran. You hid from your family. From those who took care in your education, your training on how to be a man. You are hiding still from your responsibility. But you know what? If that is what you wish, then Prince of Asgard, you tell me now that you no longer wish to be counted as such."

'If I had wished…'

"And if that is the case, then such words against the All Father and not one's father of one's youth deserves punishment as if for treason." Odin shakes his head and his voice lowers dangerously, "I won't have it, Loki. You make your decision and I will make that easier for you to think on it." He pauses for a long moment before he yells towards the door, "Guards!"


No more words come from Loki for the moment, his voice is held back as a blade sheathed as he holds Odin's gaze for the time that the man speaks to him. It's a steady gaze and it's clear more words should come, or would…

Yet he stands there silent until the guards are around them and he says simply, "Tell Mother to hold off on the feast." And then there's the smile again, everything is fine, everything is normal and in control for Loki. Even as the guards take him away.

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