Nuisance Next Door

Closeted

Loki leaned out of his window, glaring at the Stark house. The whole thing was brightly lit in every room and music was pouring through the walls. Tons of kids were gathered on Stark's lawn and inside the house, spilling out of every door. When Stark had said a party, Loki had assumed it would be a small party with Pepper and Steve and the rest of the lunatics Tony chose to hang out with. He hadn't expected this.

Why the hell had Stark invited him to a party full of people that Loki hated? Not to mention, they all hated Loki too. This was going to be a fucking disaster.

It was already ten. Tony had told him to be over at nine, but Loki refused to move an inch until Tony asked him to. Loki glanced down at his phone in anticipation.

"Loki," Thor said, appearing at the door. "Don't you think we should go?"

Loki shrugged. "I like to be fashionably late."

"Come on," Thor begged. "We don't want to miss the fun." Loki looked over at his brother and groaned. Thor was using the dreaded puppy eyes on him.

He stood, smoothed down his shirt, and tried to ignore his tingling nerves. He was wearing a plain blue t-shirt over dark jeans. Honestly, he didn't care what he looked like, but he wasn't about to make himself stick out.

He followed his brother into the hallway and down the stairs into the foyer. Loki's phone buzzed just then and he opened the message.

you coming or what?

Loki scoffed and pocketed his phone, not bothering to reply. He shoved his feet into his shoes while Thor waited, leaning against the wall. Frigga appeared from the living room. "Are you boys going to the party next door?"

Thor nodded enthusiastically. "Yeah, it's supposed to be the party of the year."

"No one told me that," Loki mumbled, struggling on his left shoe. He had this thing where he never tied his shoes.

"Well, be safe you two," she said. Her eyes purposefully settled on Loki. He ignored his mother; he could take of his self, thanks.

Frigga glanced back into the living room where Odin was focused on the TV, not paying any attention to his family. "You should be back around midnight, okay?" Frigga said, turning back.

"Got it," Thor said happily while Loki mumbled, "Don't count on it."

Frigga smiled at them none the less and waved them to the door. "Okay, go on," she said. "I don't want to keep you."

Loki smiled back at her. Warmth spread in his chest with her constant positivity and kindness. He was lucky to have her.

They exited the house and Loki's smile immediately disappeared as he noticed the kids gathered in the lawn. Instead, he composed himself as they stepped across the crisp grass towards the loud, blaring party.

Thor led the way past the other kids, some of which Loki recognized from class, and entered the front door. The house was filled with people, bodies everywhere, and the noise was horrendous. Loki grimaced and stepped in the hallway.

"Thor!" Fandral called excitedly, followed by Sif and Hogun. "You're here! Finally."

Thor attempted to glare at his friends but he was doing a piss-poor job of it. "I told you that until you accept Loki—"

Fandral interrupted, saying, "We know, Thor, and we're fine with little Loki." He stuck his hand in Loki's hair and ruffled it aggressively.

Loki ducked out of his grasp, glaring heavily. What an asshole. Fandral only continued to grin at Loki and then winked once at them. "Right, Loki? We can get along?"

"Piss off," Loki spat back, crossing his arms.

"See? That's the spirit," Fandral said, turning back to Thor. "But really, Thor, I need you to come with me. I have Jane waiting to meet you in the backyard." Fandral gestured to the kitchen behind him which was packed with teenagers.

Thor's face turned instantly red. He hesitated, looking at Loki.

"Go. You don't need to babysit me," Loki said, waving his brother away despite how uncomfortable he was growing.

Thor patted Loki's shoulder in hard strikes. "I really owe you one, brother," Thor said with a grateful smile.

Loki shrugged him off and watched him disappear into the crowd with his friends. Great. Now he was alone in the middle of a party. The only thing left to do was to find Tony and if he didn't find him, Loki would be happy to leave.

He moved through the sea of bodies as the music pulsed around him, vibrating through the frame of the house. He headed first towards the living room. Loki scanned the crowd and noticed Steve. He took a step towards his acquaintance, but Steve was already moving away from him, navigating the crowd a lot easier than Loki was.

Loki ventured further inside and was slammed into by another body. He turned as the girl laughed, slurring an apology. Loki glared at her before moving on.

He was back in the hallway a moment later, growing more impatient even though he'd only been there for less than ten minutes. He took out his phone and there were no new messages from Stark. Glaring at the blasted thing, Loki sent off a text message to Stark, telling him to meet him in the kitchen.

Suddenly, Loki felt something hit his feet and he was falling. His phone flew from his hand and it skid across the floor, disappearing into the crowd. Loki landed flat on his stomach just something wet sprayed over him, completely soaking him. It smelled like vodka. Loki groaned, feeling the vodka seep through his clothes and dripping through his hair.

Loki glanced up, glaring around, looking for the culprit. "You should really watch where you're walking," Thanos called, standing to his left with an empty glass. There were laughs from the people around Thanos but the rest of the crowd went back to whatever they were doing, continuing to ignore Loki who laid on the ground.

Loki struggled to his feet. "Fuck you," Loki growled back at Thanos.

Thanos laughed at Loki. Anger boiled up inside of Loki and he lunged at Thanos. He could kill him!

Someone grabbed onto him, holding him back from smashing Thanos's face in. "Get off of me," Loki said, trying to throw the other person off.

"Loki, stop!"

Loki turned his head in surprise, recognizing the voice that had just shouted in his ear. Bucky was standing there, holding onto Loki's middle, keeping him from moving, but Bucky was scowling at Thanos. "He's not worth it," Bucky continued.

He was beyond speechless, looking at the boy who had terrorized him for the last two years. "What the hell?" Loki said, not knowing what else to say.

Thanos glowered at the two of them. "I see you've been hanging out with Steve too much, Bucky," Thanos said. "You're getting soft."

"Shut up," Bucky warned, loosening his hold on Loki.

Thanos grinned. "What happened, Bucky? You're standing up for this loser now? Why? Because of Steve? Please tell me he's at least sucking your cock for you!"

Suddenly Bucky was shoving Loki aside, lunging at Thanos. The crowd erupted in loud shouts and cheers as the fight broke out. Bucky threw a heavy punch which connected with Thanos's face with a heavy crack. Thanos stumbled back a few feet, clutching at his nose but Thanos looked up, letting his bloody nose show.

"You have it coming!" Thanos barked back. He swung out his leg, tripping Bucky just as he did with Loki, and he went down with a thud. Thanos was on him instantly, punching Bucky right in the gut. Screams rose up over the party.

Loki grabbed onto Thanos's shoulders, shoving him away from Bucky. Thanos clocked him in the cheek. Loki gasped out at the eruption of pain but kneed the bastard in the gut. Thanos went down, clutching at his stomach.

Quickly, Loki turned to Bucky and threw out his hand to him. Without hesitation, Bucky grabbed on and hoisted himself up to his feet.

"Come on!" Bucky cried, clasping onto Loki's wrist and tugging him into the crowd, escaping while they had the chance.

"What are you doing?" Thanos yelled through his heavy gasps to the people around him. "Grab them!"

But Loki and Bucky were already disappearing through the crowd and down the hallway. Around the corner, Bucky threw open and closet and shoved Loki inside. He shut the door quietly after them.

The two of them slumped down in what appeared to be a coat closet. The coats above them swayed and Loki was pretty sure he was sitting on some shoes. Bucky laughed quietly as they watched shadows pass by the closet. Their stomping feet faded down the hallway.

Loki looked at Bucky. Bucky was smiling, still watching the door. This is probably the happiest Loki had seen Bucky since 9th grade.

"Why did you help me?" Loki asked, shifting uncomfortably in his wet clothes.

Bucky turned halfway toward him and suddenly his smile became fonder. "Steve is starting to grow on me…"

Loki nodded, drawing his knees up to his chest.

"I'm sorry."

Loki's head shot up at that, staring at Bucky with wide eyes. "…what?"

"I'm sorry for being a dick," Bucky continued, refusing to look at Loki. "Steve told me to say that…"

Loki figured. Bucky wasn't the type to apologize on his own, but just the fact that he did was beyond anything Loki had expected.

"Don't get me wrong," Bucky continued. "We aren't friends. But I know that I overreacted now, okay? So let's just, I don't know, forget about everything."

"You're the one who started all of this," Loki replied, feeling a little annoyed. "And you're stupid if you think I'll just forget about everything."

"I know." Bucky said, looking at him. He was frowning deeply, looking at Loki as if he were a kicked puppy. "I was angry about what your dad did. He threatened my family! I hated you for that. But now… I'm going to let go."

"For Steve," Loki finished for him.

Bucky didn't respond to that; not really confirming nor denying what Loki said. "I'll try to make up for it, I promise." He glanced at Loki, completely serious.

"No," Loki said firmly. "Don't do anything. I don't want your help. Like you said, we're not friends and it's probably not going to change any time soon."

The two just looked at each other, not knowing what to make of each other. Bucky's sudden change of heart didn't sit well with Loki but at least he was starting to realize what an asshole he's been.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Tony went to the kitchen as soon as he got Loki's text to meet him there. A lot more people had shown up at the party than Tony had expected but he had yet to find the one person he'd thrown this damn party for. Actually, scratch that, this party wasn't for anyone in particular. Nope. Definitely not for Loki.

He cursed under his breath and pushed his way to the kitchen island where all of the booze was set out. Tony snatched up the bourbon and poured himself a glass, before turning to the rest of the people. He scanned the crowd for shaggy black hair, but Loki was nowhere in sight.

Loki took a swig of his drink, not even wincing as the alcohol seared down his throat. It was his father's incredibly strong bourbon.

A girl stumbled into the kitchen, looking excited. "There's a fight in the front!" she cried out.

"Ah, hell," Tony groaned. They better not break anything.

He sat back against the counter and watched as a good portion of the kids went to watch the fight. Tony tapped his fingers on the counter as he waited, growing impatient. How long was Loki going to keep him waiting?

Suddenly there were people running down the hall and Thanos, the renowned idiot of the senior class, came bursting into the kitchen yelling, "Loki! Bucky!"

Tony froze mid-drink. Thanos fought his way through a group of girls and ran out the back door, followed by a few of his friends. "Shit," Tony said, discarding the bourbon with a clink of his glass.

Tony slipped his way into a group of girls who had just entered the kitchen and turned on his award-winning smile. "Hey girls, do you know what was happening with Thanos and Loki?" he asked.

The girls smiled back and one blonde spoke up, "There was a big fight between Thanos, Loki, and Bucky and now Thanos is on a man hunt for them."

Tony felt his smile slip and he nodded, pushing away without even saying a thank you. His heart thudded as he stepped out into the hallway, searching for Loki.

He grabbed onto a girl walking by. "Have you seen Loki?"

She pointed back in the direction of the kitchen. "Thanos is probably killing him as we speak," she said before stepping around him.

Tony backtracked, heading for the kitchen. He was worried out of his mind.

Just as he was about to walk back into the kitchen, he paused, noticing the closet. Tony went to it immediately and threw it open, revealing Loki and Bucky sitting side by side on the bottom of his closet.

Loki was drenched and there was a darkening mark growing on his cheek. "Jesus Christ," Tony said, squatting down by Loki, taking a good look at his injured face. "What happened?"

"A fight," Loki said simply. Tony looked into Loki's soft green eyes and his heart stuttered.

"You scared the shit out of me," Tony said, not able to take his eyes off Loki's spanking new injury.

"I'm fine too, thanks for asking," Bucky said, standing and looking down at the two on the floor.

Tony glared up at Bucky. "Did you do something to Loki? Because I swear to God, I'll—"

"He helped me," Loki said casually, standing. Tony followed him to his feet but kept close. "Thanos poured a drink on me and he threw Thanos a punch in his face." He caught Tony's still worried expression. "I'm fine."

Tony looked at him closely, making sure that Loki was telling the truth. Besides the growing bruise and his soggy wet clothes, Loki seemed otherwise unharmed. "That doesn't explain your bruise though." Tony had the urge to touch him but he restrained his self.

"I made sure that I got a few punches in too," Loki said, as if that were enough explanation.

"Well next time invite me to the fun," Tony said. He glanced back to Bucky but Bucky was gone. "And since when are you friends with Bucky?" He didn't like that Loki was even close to Bucky after all that he'd done to Loki.

"I'm not, so you can stop looking like you are going to have a fit," Loki said. He smiled slightly with a hint of humor. God, Tony hated Loki right now. His heart was working in overdrive. "Steve made him be nice to me."

Everything clicked in place and Tony relaxed. "Ah, that makes a lot more sense. I thought something was wrong with the universe, like the world was imploding." He gestured for Loki to follow him with the flick of his hand. "Come on; let's get you some fresh clothes."

But before Loki could respond, Thor came thundering into the hallway, followed by a small petite girl and Thor's friends. "Loki! Are you hurt?"

Loki slapped a hand over his face, clearly embarrassed. "He's fine, Thor," Tony said, grabbing onto Thor and steering him back towards his friends. "Now leave us alone, okay?"

"But Tony," Thor began.

"Go," Tony said, pushing him toward the girl. He lowered his voice for only Thor to hear. "I've got him."

After that, he disappeared upstairs with Loki. He tried not to notice any of the obvious stares from the party-goers as he pulled the school's outcast up the stairs to his room. Fuck them all. Loki's awesome.

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