Ozymandias: King of Kings


Jane was on Earth. Puente Antiguo, to be exact. Except it wasn't quite the small town in the desert of New Mexico that she remembered, because everything was blue, a deep, icy, glistening blue. The buildings, just as she remembered them, were shades of blue and grey that stretched upward to the dimly lit sky. Underfoot, light blue sand crunched and smooth pebbles of grey slid beside her bare feet. She looked around. The silence was deafening, the empty streets filled her with both dread and curiosity. She stepped away from the main street and started walking toward the outskirts of town, following a streak of deep blue that slashed across the greying sky, dotted with stars and three large silver moons.

She moved as though in a dream, but everything was so real. Her feet carried her swiftly away from the town and into the deep blue desert, where, on the horizon, beneath the streak of deep blue, Jane could make out hazy figures walking toward her. She tried to turn away, but her feet overruled, and she continued toward the figures, which were grower larger and more defined. The sky grew lighter, illuminating a soft glow around their bodies. Closer, closer, now nearly close enough to shake hands, Jane fairly floated up to the figures. Half were human. They were men and women both, old and young, And every human was holding the hand of another figure, something that looked human but was very alien.

The alien figures were a deep blue, a blue that matched the streak overhead in the lightening sky. Their faces and visible bodies were marked with lines and symbols that formed some sort of writing, a form of ancient ruins that Jane could not read. She recognized these creatures; somewhere in her memory, she realized they were the frost giants of Jotunheim. And they were holding hands with humans.

She approached the nearest pair. There were nearly twenty total. This pair consisted of an elderly human woman and a frost giant with sad eyes. The woman was clearly of Indian descent. Her long, white hair was braided behind a smiling face, and her body was wrapped in fabrics of red and gold. Jane floated to the woman and felt herself smiling, felt herself warming from within and drawn to the couple. She wanted to form words and ask so many questions, but her mouth wouldn't work. All she could do was gesture at the pair, prompting the frost giant to firmly grab her hands and shake his head, glancing at the woman beside him. She smiled, then gently took Jane's head in her hands and leaned forward until their foreheads were touching.

Jane gasped. Through her head pulsed images, flashing like those of the memory marker. She saw this elderly woman as young and vibrant, her beautiful smile flashing through a haze of colors and chanting. She saw the old frost giant with sad eyes as young and proud, his eyes flashing with excitement. The two were meeting in an alley between buildings of red clay. The woman didn't seem to care about the frost giant's appearance. She saw them dashing through streets at night, visiting the temples and performing puja when the rest of the world was sleeping. She felt the love and the connection and the bond and the pain.

The woman released her and Jane floated back, shaking her head violently at the couple before her. A human and a frost giant. Impossible, but yet, here in front of her, their bond actually physically palpable and observable in the blue haze surrounding their bodies, stood nearly ten couples of that very combination. It wasn't the thing that bothered her the most. What scared Jane was the feeling emanating from their bodies and surrounding her own. It was the same sensation she felt around Loki; the combination of fear and curiosity and connection that drew her to him. She felt it here, surrounding these couples.

She wanted to ask so many questions, needed so many answers. She wanted to experience the stories of all these pairs, to understand their past, to determine exactly where she was. She wanted to know about her and about Thor and about Loki, and she felt these people held the answers. But overhead, coming from some gaping hole in the sky, she heard voices calling her name. The deep blue streak was opening, and through its crack she saw the sky of Asgard and the stretching trees of the garden. She was being pulled upward, her feet flying high above the ground. She looked back; the couples were smiling and fading away into the blueness of the desert sands.


She heard the voices calling through the crack in the sky, which was moving ever closer and pulling her through to Asgard. Jane called back, shouting a name to come and save her from this strange blue world. She shouted and shouted the name, hoping for someone to grab her hands and pull her through the crack.

Suddenly, she felt the strong arms surrounding her body and lifting her up. The blue world disappeared and everything was Asgard and the glowing night sky and the smell of honeysuckle. She continued saying the name until she felt the darkness creeping into the corners of her eyes, and she let it take her away from the worlds.

Thor and Loki had found Jane underneath a grove of pale trees, resting on green grass that illuminated her sleeping form. They rushed over to her, Thor tossing his hammer aside and shouting Jane's name while shaking her body. Loki had remained aside and stayed silent while his brother cried out for his betrothed. Suddenly, Jane's eyes had fluttered, and she started mumbling something Loki couldn't hear. Thor leaned down, his ear held near her barely-moving lips. Suddenly, his head jerked away, and his eyes snapped to Loki's. He beckoned Loki over, and carefully passed Jane's slowly awakening body into his arms. He then stood and called for Mjolnir, and walked away from the pair, stalking back toward the palace.

Loki stared after his brother, then snapped back to Jane. Her lips were still mumbling something incoherent, and her eyes were fluttering with rapid movement. Loki leaned closer, just as his brother had done, hoping to hear her muttered words. He did not expect what he heard.

"Loki…Loki…Loki," the mortal woman repeated his name over and over, as though pleading he would appear.

Suddenly, her eyes opened, and Loki gasped. They were a bright blue, a blue he had only seen in his own skin, in his true form. Although he nearly shouted her name, she seemed not to hear. She only stared upward toward the nighttime sky, then sighed and closed her eyes against the darkness. Loki's eyes snapped up again, searching for his brother, then again returned to Jane. He sighed and clasped a hand to his eyes, wondering at the situation they found themselves trapped within.

Then he lifted Jane's sleeping form into his arms and carried her toward the palace. He did not notice that, overhead, the night sky had become brighter, illuminated by a bright blue streak that flashed through the stars and glowed with a hidden passion.

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