1964-09-26 - Dire Warnings
Summary: A breach in Asgard's dimensional walls occurs… and another Thor comes bearing warnings.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
amora thor 

The first ripple of disturbance in Asgard plays against senses more mystical than mundane in nature. It's an odd frission, a sensation that's difficult to articulate. Nearly every Asgardian in the Golden City looks up at once— laborers from their work, youth from their games— and squint skywards at the stars overhead, searching the infinite sky and the stars beyond for the source of that influence.

Then, abruptly, nearly an entire city block of housing vanishes. Just that readily, as if an eraser were dragged over their exterior to reveal carnage beneath it. Screams rise from the destroyed area; the light that pours from the homes is a lurid red, and it reeks of smoke and ash.

Of death.

The soldiers who rush to aid the injured, worridly scanning for the source of the explosion, abruptly blunder to a halt six strides into the disaster zone. The light on their gleaming armor goes from warm yellow to a dark, sinister red, laced with shadows. They look up to the sky in horror at some sight only they can percieve.

Horns bray an alarm across Asgard— a warning to take shelter and a call to arms for Asgard's mightiest.

Thor, resting in his chambers, pauses for not even a moment. He flings himself into the sky, calling his armor to gird him, and soars towards the strange disturbance.

Amora had been lazily sprawled on Thor's bed, flipping through a series of pages on some obsecure magical text. She had intended to spend the day as she usually did these days; carefree and in the golden Princes' presence. She wore a slinky dress of gold and green, courtly in bead-work and embroidery. Her shoes had been kicked off at the door, forgotten sometime ago.

Golden hair halo'ed her features in the sunlight that streamed in from outside. The first hints of what was going on struck her well before the sounds of screams reached the palace. The magical buckling was the veils between the dimensions was ripped apart and destroyed had her grasping for air. Her hands clenching tightly at her head as the magical feedback struck first.

Her eyes went wide and she looked about in rising terror. Especially as Thor suited up and took off with his truty hammer in hand. "No!" She vanished and reappeared near the rip in reality, magic lighting her hands as she hurriedly started chanting. A magical barrier to hold the destruction wrought on one world to stay on that side of her protective barrier.

Amora's magics contain the fire, fury and smoke easily enough, but the hole in reality grows. There's nothing for her magic to grab on to, because reality /itself/ is eroding. The walls between worlds, washing away as surely as the ocean destroys sandbars.

Thor lands heavily and strides into the middle of the fray, only to come up short and balk at the devastation surrounding him. He turns in place, baffled confusion on his features.

From within the erosion, he can clearly see Asgard— golden, gleaming, blue-skied. And with a blurring, doubling of vision, another Asgard— one where the sky burns red, and the great castle has a full third of the parapets burned away. Screams echo, which only Thor and his men can hear, and he holds a hand out for Amora to stay back.

"What mysticism is this?" he roars, gripping Mjolnir tight. He turns in place, and starts as three haggard, battle-wounded Asgardian warriors stagger forward.

"Lord Thor!" one of them cheers— but when they get close, they balk, too. "Sorcery!" One of them cries. "Illusions!"

"Die, monster!" the third one snarls. She levels her spear at Thor and his retinue, and for once, the blonde God is too stunned to react swiftly. His warriors, however, see only a threat, and rush to meet their opponents with a clatter of flesh, metal, and will.

Amora force once, didn't seem content to stay put despite Thor's gesture. "Beloved! You must come back! The hole is widening the more that is consumed the stronger it shall grow! You must return!" She shouted, her arms spread wide as she pushed her magic to continue to bandage the ever-widening rip. Like a child trying to mop up a spill while the sink continued to overflow from the rim.

Pointless and in vain. She did not have the ability to mend the rips between dimensions to such an extent. Only the All-father would.

"Thor! Come back!"

"What /is/ it?" Thor asks, still looking baffled. He hefts his hammer, as if preparing to wield it— but he can't bring himself to lift arms against Asgardians, it seems, no matter how angry they are. They /are/ Asgardian warriors— but emaciated and exhausted, clearly at the end of their energy and rope. One is slain on the spot; his warriors manage to subdue the other two, and lash their wrists with bindings.

He gapes at the sight of a fallen, wrecked castle, and looks at Amora with visible shock on his sturdy features.

"ASGARD," booms a voice. It echoes across the rocks and stones and even every blade of grass. Odin, the All-Father. "ASGARD SHATTERS LIKE ICE OVER A LAKE. MY POWER COMPELS THESE GAPS TO HEAL— QUIT THEM, SWIFTLY!"

Thor obeys Odin's words, beckoning his men to follow him, and they move swiftly towards the edge of the tear in reality. Thor rests a hand on Amora's shoulder, looking into the torn reality.

"Our home, destroyed," he says, stricken. Several other holes have opened, and a flickering of crystalline power caps them off one by one. Only the largest of the rips remains, and worry and anxiety toys with Thor's features.

"Hurry! To me!" he bellows, spotting more Asgardians. The God of Thunder raises his hammer over his head to signal them, and the weary refugees starts running towards him with a haggard pace.

Behind them, slavering monsters armed with vast halberds and heavy laser cannons break into pursuit. Several of the fleeing refugees are shot in the back, falling and screaming, and Thor steps forward to help them despite Odin's admonitions.

Amora seemed to at least understand in a magical sense what was going on. She, who had studied far and wide, struggled to peer into alternative worlds. To see if she might steal power or happiness for herself from them. She understood on a basic level what was going on. Though she could not understand the why or the reason behind the sudden rips.

As Odin's voice echoed out over the realm she shuddered, her hand still out-stretched as she continued to sketch runes in hurried patterns, keeping her barrier up. A bright-ribbon of green that acted as a beacon in the darkness and flames of the ruined Asgard beyond.

"No! Thor! You must be upon this side! Come back!" As the Prince dove back into the gap despite his father's command. She screamed again for him to return, looking up at her barrier briefly as the hole continued to exist. Not closing. She cursed, unable to move beyond and pull him back. Not unless she wished to weaken her focus and the barrier too.

Thor halts at Amora's cries; consternation grips his features, but her words pierce the rage building behind his eyes. Fury at Asgardians being cut down.

Thor grits his teeth and sets his jaw, holding his position with a pacing fury. Fists clenched, he roars his anger and flings his hammer at the enemies. At least he can buy the fleeing Asgardians some time, and they start spilling over the gap into the glorious golden city.

The hammer smashes through three of the monsters, flying with that strange intelligence only that weapon has. It zips back towards Thor—

—and the man at the rear of the refugee pack snatches Mjolnir from the air.

Thor gawks in shock as the cloaked and hooded warrior fights a rearguard position, swatting away the attackers. There are too many of them, though; it is a losing battle, and he is swarmed, overrun.

Abruply Mjolnir explodes from the melee, sending bodies flying, and the man holding the hammer zips towards Thor and Amora with shocking velocity, barely conscious.

Thor catches man and weapon moments before the crystal veil slams shut, and the sounds and smells of that 'other' Asgard are sealed away.

They still must bear mute witness to the slaughtering carnage, though it seems at least the invaders are unaware of the breaches.

Thor rolls the bloodied lump of man in his arms onto his back and pulls away his hood, revealing a man who could be his twin. The other warrior refuses to surrender Mjolnir to Thor, to the point that the god must tear it from the other man's fingers by main strength.

Bedraggled, bloodied, and mortally wounded, the injured man opens his eyes and coughs, blood spattering on the ground.

"Wh- what trickery is this?" he rasps, looking around with bewilderment.

The Enchantress stood watching behind her barrier, her eyes wide a she watched the chaos of battle continue to rage on. Her eyes following the singing path of the Uru-hammer with increasing tension and worry. She gaped along with Thor when another snatches the hammer from his grip. Her mouth parting in shock as she stared.

Then they were beyond that other Asgard and the veil slammed shut. Her barrier crumbled as she ran forward on sharp sounding heels toward Thor's side. She came to a sliding halt, dropping down beside him. Her hand reaching out to grasp his arm. "Darling, are you hale? What happened, how can—" She broke off as the injured man in Thor's arms was revealed. She stared, her heart hammering hard in her chest.

"You… oh no. No.. no. He.. he must go back. The balance is broken." She whispered thickly. "He cannot die here."

Other-Thor recoils from Amora, trying to shove himself away— but he's weak. His arms have lost their bulk and his skin no longer glows with the subtle light of Asgard, of immortality.

"Witch! I'll ki—" his words end as he breaks off hacking and coughing. Blood runs readily from under his armor.

"Amora is an /ally/," Thor tells his counterpart, pinning the man's shoulders back with surprising ease. The two men stare at each other warily, but Mjolnir seems to respond to both— it settles many unanswered questions.

"No ally of mine," the haggard man wheezes. "No ally of Asgard. She and Loki," he coughs. "When the invaders came, they threw open our gates. Opened the vaults. Father— mother— dead," Other-Thor grates. He grips Thor's arms, feebly, blood smearing on Thor's armor.

"You cannot let him come here," Other-Thor gasps, turning an ashen grey in color. "Do not let him— do not let him destroy your home, as he destroyed m-mine…"

Thor exchanges worried looks with Amora. "What power could accomplish this?" Thor inquires of the Enchantress, stunned. "What could have undone Asgard's defenses so readily, even for an invader striking from within?"

Amora blanched, looking struck as the other Thor started to curse her, spitting how he'd kill her. She recoiled, shifting closer to her Thor, her Prince's side. Her hand tightened on Thor's arm, and she swallowed a hard lump in her throat that was forming at the tale that was spun from the dying man's lips.

"I would do no such thing." She hissed, her lips twisting back in a snarl. "My beloved speaks true." She looked toward the injured Thor, her lips pursed into a thin, white line. Her jaw clenching as she struggled with the inate desire to defend herself further from acts she had no committed.. though she had doubtlessly thought of them in the darkest of her moments….

Then Thor was speaking to her, asking questions.. Her mind worked over the possibilities. "Several things. Loki could've stolen your father's powers. There are.. objects of power that might give such power to the wielders. Well enough to contend with the All-father's magic, especially if he were in the Odin-sleep." She whispered, her voice thick. "They are not simple to get."

The Other-Thor laughs, a wet, gurgling sound, mocking her words. "Yes. /Things/," he coughs. "That which belongs not to Loki or his would-be Queen," he rasps. "Things even Odin was wise enough not to use, no matter how dire the peril. Now, it matters not," he says.

His trembling slows. A bad sign. He is dying, of mortal wounds that no magic can sustain. He's clearly been beyond the reach of the Golden Apples for too long, leaving him at the mercy of his attackers.

"Asgard has fallen," he tells Thor, looking back at his counterpart. His eyes start to dim. "The Mandalay Gem— taken. Loki sat on the throne long enough to take a spear through his ribs. Amora fled," he says, eyes flickering.

Thor grips Amora's hand with tight reassurance, face stony and impassive.

"I know not where. Gods below," he grunts, coughing, grip slacking. "Had it been but me that fell from the Bifrost… instead … Loki. The witch found… brother, and revived him… conspired…"

His eyes start to roll shut, and Thor shakes him. "Friend!" Thor shouts. "Thor! Prince! Who is it that wrought this destruction? Who seeks now to penetrate our world?"

Other-Thor looks at his unwounded counterpart and coughs, weakly. "He is coming. He is… on his.. way… you must be ready…"

"Thanos," Other-Thor whispers.

And then there are no longer two Princes on the hard stones. The surviving refugees weep and cling to each other, survivor's guilt mingling with anguish.

Amora stared, aghast, at the words that the dying Thor imparted to them. Her hand shook as it gripped at the still strong and hale prince beside her, he was her life line to the panic that lanced through her breast. Her breath stopped as he spoke of the where the world's diverged. Where her Thor had fallen, his Loki had. She closed her eyes, the old name of 'witch' stinging hard at her heart.

Then the other Thor was whispering, coughing his last warning. She stared, her eyes wide as her gaze shifted toward her still living Thunderer. She fell to her knees beside him, burying her features against his shoulder as she shuddered. Her breath escaping her in heaving gusts.

"I would not betray you. I would not betray Asgard so. I swear it. Oh, Thor. Thor.." She clung to him. "Beloved, I swear I would not do such things."

Thor draws his counterparts eyes shut and rises, turning to face Amora. His arms wrap around her immediately, and he hugs the woman to him. "I know, beloved, I know," he tells her, with firm reassurance. "This is not me. He has my mien, but it is not /our/ world," he reminds her— and reminds all the others nearby.

"We must be prepared for an invasion," Thor says, raising his voice. "One Asgard might fall, but Asgard is eternal— a beacon across all the universes. Where on falls, ten thousand will remain— and we will remain!"

His voice echoes nearly loudly as Odin's, and he keeps Amora's hand gripped firmly in his.

"Warriors! Patrols at all hours, until myself or Lord Odin orders otherwise," he says. "I want a full regiment at arms near this… breach, at all times."

He tugs Amora's hand. "Come. We must give report to my father, and determine Asgard's next step. Your wisdom will be required here."

He pauses to look down at the body on the stones. "And prepare him for funeral. He is a Prince, and deserves a burial worthy of one," Thor says, trying to shake the unease from his features. How does that saying go?

Someone just walked on his grave.

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