A jolt runs through my body as I stare at the piece of plastic in my hand. I can't be pregnant! I was sterilized at the age of seven! My blood runs cold as I realize that I am starting to show. I should have recognized the signs sooner: being sick in the morning, craving strange foods, and having to use the bathroom a lot more than often. A single tear slips down my face before I wipe it angrily away. I will not allow my mistake to take control of my life! In desperation, I search out our prisoner and magician, Loki.
I do a quick surveillance spell to make sure that I am alone in the Tower. Tony, Thor, Bruce, Steve, and Clint went out to get something to eat. Natasha stayed home. Currently, she is in the bathroom. I lock my door and lay down on my bed. With a sigh, I cast off the glamour that I have been wearing. It saps at my energy, and it is pointless. The curve of my belly strains at the tight leather Asgardian clothing. I sink back into my plush pillows, allowing myself to relax. A knock on the door causes me to sit up in annoyance. "Leave me in peace! I do not wish to talk to you, Black Widow," I sneer.
"Please! I need your help," she says, voice cracking. I smirk. I know exactly what she wants, but I am going to let her squirm for a while longer. Stupid mortals. They base everything on appearances. What she doesn't know is that she isn't really pregnant.
"Fine, come in," I growl, quickly recasting the glamour. She kicks down the door angrily. "Why did you do that?!" I demand angrily.
"I need your help, and you were taking too long," she says, trying to hide a smirk of her own. My emerald eyes flash with anger.
"What brought you to disturb me?" I ask, barely hiding the irritation that I am feeling. She sighs, shoulders slumping.
"I am pregnant," she blurts.
"Well now, isn't this interesting? The Black Widow is with child," I laugh. Natasha looks almost ready to cry, her professional demeanor gone. I almost take pity on her. Almost. I am not called the Trickster for nothing. "What do you expect me to do about it?" I snarl.
"I only ask that you help me disguise it."
"Why should I help you?"
"You shouldn't," she admits. "But I really need your help. Please! I can speak to Fury and Agent Coulson. I can have you released!" Natasha says desperately. I scoff.
"I quite like it here. It is not so bad. All I have to do is be good, and I get my own bedroom and everything," I say. Natasha's face falls.
"Loki, I'm begging you!" She finally breaks down. I watch her cry for a few seconds longer, before slowly nodding my head.
"I'll help you." Natasha lets out a sigh of relief. "Get over here," I sigh. I really don't like seeing her look so broken, despite what others may say. I just like to get a rise out of them. The Avengers can get so uptight sometimes. It's good to shake them up once in a while. She walks over to the bed, then sits down on the edge. I place my hand on her belly, only to end up on the floor with my arm twisted behind my back. I groan in pain, then use my magic to throw her off of me. "Do you want my help or not?" I gripe, rubbing my sore shoulder. Natasha slowly stands up, and walks over to the bed again.
"I'm sorry. It was instinct. I won't do it again," she whispers, depressed. I gently place my hand on her stomach again. She twitches, but doesn't harm me again. I allow my magic to get rid of the glamour. To her, it appears as if I am hiding her "baby bump." When the glamour is gone, she collapses against the bed, sighing contentedly. "Thank you," she whispers sincerely. I quickly offer her my hand, eager for her to leave. However, she takes it as an act of aggression. I am once again thrown to the floor, with my arm twisted behind my back.
"Get off of me!" I hiss angrily, shocked that she would think to attack me again. I quickly stand up and brush myself off. Natasha stares at my midriff, and I realize with horror that my glamour has disappeared as well. I wave my hand discreetly and recast the spell.
"Are you...?" she asks me.
"Am I what?" I snap.
"Never mind..." she trails off.
"The glamour may cause mild hallucinations," I warn her. She nods.
"Thank you, Loki. I really appreciate it," Natasha says, gratitude shining in her eyes. I feel guilty for my trick.
"Now, get out, before I throw you out," I growl. Natasha leaves quietly, without a fuss. I sigh and repair my door. When I am convinced that I am going to be undisturbed, I let the glamour drop once again. I sink into the soft pillows and fall asleep.
Loki finally agrees to conceal my pregnancy. I feel bad for attacking him twice, but old habits die hard. I swear I saw a baby bump after I attacked him the second time, but it must have been a trick of the light. I blinked, and the illusion disappeared. Loki seemed stressed after that, and I left in a hurry. Now, I am just sitting in my room, waiting for Clint and the guys to come home.
The sound of the Avengers entering the house disturbs me from my slumber. I recast my glamour, then go to greet them. They all seem worn out. "What was it this time?" I wonder, genuinely curious.
"It was some idiots that decided that they needed to rob a bank. They had almost 100 hostages," Steve groans, rubbing his back.
"Was everyone okay?"
"Why do you care? Wasn't it you that said that all humans crave dominance?" Clint sneers. I sigh. Even after multiple explanations, Clint still hates me. He doesn't understand that the Tesseract was controlling me.
"For the last time, that wasn't my fault. I wasn't in complete control of my actions. Nor were you," I remind him. His eyes harden.
"Yeah, whatever. I'm going to my room." I sigh as I watch him go. I want to be on good terms with my jailers, but some make it difficult.
"I'll go talk to him," Natasha offers. She glances at me as she says this, no doubt trying to pay back her "debt." I nod slightly, giving her the okay. She leaves the room and follows Clint. A short while later, I exit the room and teleport myself to Clint's room. I shroud myself so that Natasha and Clint can neither see nor hear me.
"...realize that Loki wasn't in control of his actions, don't you?" Clint sighs heavily.
"I do. I just have a hard time trusting him."
"He wasn't in his own mind when he was controlling you, Clint. He's really not that bad of a guy," Natasha defends me. A smile tugs at the corner of my lips.
"Why are you defending him?" Clint asks suspiciously. Natasha opens her mouth, then closes it quickly. I can see her wrestling with herself, deciding whether or not to tell him.
"I'm pregnant. Loki is helping me conceal it," Natasha says.
"That's not possible. You were sterilized at a very young age. You can't be pregnant," Clint argues.
"Try telling that to the pregnancy tests I took this morning," I snap. Clint's mouth gapes open.
"Am I the father?" he finally manages to ask. Natasha nods.
"I have never slept with anyone but you," she assures him. Clint relaxes slightly.
"Why would Loki agree to help you? He's evil!" I cringe. I wish the mortal would get it through his thick skull that I am not evil.
"For the last time, he is not evil!" Clint sighs heavily.
"I disagree, but I will give him another chance. First mess up though..." Clint trails off. An involuntary shudder runs up my back. I know that Clint wouldn't hesitate to put an arrow between my eyes. I don't blame him, after all I put him through. Without making a sound, I leave the room quietly.
I lay on my bed, exhausted over the day's events. The Other Guy had complete control over my body. I was so angry. Those criminals were threatening to kill children. Children! Nobody harms a child, no matter whose it is. I sigh wearily and close my eyes. I feel gentle hands kneading my shoulders, working out all of the knots. I groan quietly, before cracking my eyes open to see who it is. Jet black hair and emerald eyes come into focus. I flip over quickly, fighting to control my heartbeat. In a few seconds, I have my heart back in a manageable range. "Loki? What are you doing here?" I ask incredulously. He smirks, his slender hands working miracles on my tight shoulders.
"Am I making you uncomfortable?" he wonders. I nod slightly, closing my eyes despite myself. His hands feel wonderful. "Do you feel more comfortable with me like this?" a distinctly feminine voice asks me. My eyes shoot open. Straddling my back is a beautiful brunette. Her dark hair frames her sharp features, accentuating her bright green eyes. My blood runs cold.
"You were Lori?" I manage to gasp. Loki/Lori nods their head. My heartbeat races again, and I feel Loki shift back to his original form. Something seems different about him, although I can't place what it is. "Why?" I manage to gasp.
"I was bored," Loki replies cooly, although I can see the lie in his eyes.
"What's the real reason?" I see his eyes harden. At last, he sighs.
"Do you promise that you won't tell anyone else?" he asks wearily. I slowly nod. He waves his hand over his belly, and I feel the urge to blink. When my eyes refocus, there is a distinct bump sticking out from Loki's hips that wasn't there before.
"What-how?" I manage to ask. Loki settles against the bed.
"Before you ask, yes, I am pregnant. Yes, it is yours." My mouth opens and closes a few times, trying to put my feelings into words.
"I'm a Frost Giant. Therefore, I am neither male or female. When I slept with you, I was in heat. I needed to mate, or I would be in unbearable pain. That pain only goes away once I have conceived," Loki explains cooly. I stare at him. "I know it's a lot to process, but it is what it is. Do not worry about supporting the child. It will not be staying with me," Loki concludes.
"What are you going to do with it?"
"I will give it away to another realm, where my father will not be able to torture it." I can see the raw pain in Loki's eyes.
"This has happened before?" I ask gently. Loki nods, a single tear trickling down his cheek. He angrily wipes it away, before standing abruptly, causing me to blink in surprise. When I open my eyes again, he is gone.