Stranger at the Door 22: Loki’s Ending
Warnings: this fic will include dark content including rape/noncon, predatory behaviour, just on the border of stepdad fic (this is a one time exception because this dynamic isn’t really for me but you know, brain makes no sense), mentions of mental health, bullying, isolation, bad parenting, age gap, self-harm, blood, depression, suicidal thoughts, dissociation, substance abuse. My warnings are not exhaustive, enter at your own risk.
This is a dark!fic and explicit. 18+ only. Your media consumption is your own responsibility. Warnings have been given. DO NOT PROCEED if these matters upset you.
Summary: You’re nineteen and life is standing still, that is until your mother meets her dream man, then everything changes. (innocent!reader)
Characters: Loki (silverfox)
Note: Before you proceed, please check the warnings a second time as new triggers have been added.
As per usual, I humbly request your thoughts! Reblogs are always appreciated and welcomed, not only do I see them easier but it lets other people see my work. Thanks to everyone who reads this one and thank you for all your energy.<3
Love you all like Donkey love Waffles. Take care. 💖
Home. Your singular haven. All your life, you hid in your room, thought yourself safe from the horrors of the world. But there was nowhere safe from the monsters you feared for so long. No, they came and sought you out.
You realise now that you have no home. No where to truly hide.
That old town, those streets you knew and didn't, the stores you saw in passing, and those few you ventured into, flicker by as you stare without seeing. You're going back, but not going home. To a woman you once thought of as a protector, revealed to be a liar and betrayer. As bad as the man beside you, steering with one hand as his other rests on your thigh.
You're not used to his touch, only indifferent. As you are to most things. It might be the meds but you think maybe it's just you. You can't let yourself feel or you'll feel too much.
"We can go again," Loki offers, "somewhere else, maybe? Somewhere you've always wanted to go."
"Sure," you shrug.
He waits and kneads through your jeans, "no suggestions?"
"I've never wanted to go anywhere," you say.
He doesn't say anything else as he lifts his knuckles to your cheek, "now you can go anywhere you wish, precious. With me."
You nod and grab his hand, refraining from snatching it away and instead, holding it gently. He twines his fingers through yours and lets you lower it to your seat as he watches the road.
"Marlena can't know... about the cuts, do you understand?" he says as he turns into the suburbs, those sprawling white picket fences which put your rundown childhood home to shame.
"I know," you say.
"Good girl," he squeezes your hand, "I'll knock on your door once she's asleep and we can spend some time together--"
"She knows. You said so," you sit rigid and glance at him in the rearview.
"Oh, she does but that was another condition," he rubs his thumb along your hand, "we can't... do anything in front of her."
You sink down in the seat. Your stomach curdles. Your dread mounts as you recognise the cul de sac. Your mother weighs heavier on you than anything else; than his relentless hands and endless desire, his sickly sweet lies designed to coax you. A sliver of emotion spikes in your chest but quickly subsides.
"Another of her little fantasies," he says as he pulls his hand away and turns up his drive, "she likes to pretend, we both know that."
"Alright," you utter as he shuts off the engine.
He gets out first as you reluctantly do the same. He grabs the bags and winks at you as he nods you towards the house. You cross your arms and match up the walk to the front door. Inside, the house is quiet.
Loki closes the door with his foot and sighs as he sets the bags down. You scratch your neck as you look around. This place is both strange and familiar. Like yourself. The same yet completely changed.
"Sweetheart!" Your mother startles you as she appears from the front room, "oh, you're finally home! How was your trip?"
She latches onto Loki and pulls him by the front of his jacket to kiss her. He grunts quietly as she does, forcing her tongue into his mouth. You look up the stairs as you try not to hear the nasty noise of their kissing. Finally he frees himself and coughs.
"Honeybun, were you good?" your mother asks as she faces you.
You nod and tuck your hands in your pocket, the cuffs of the blouse concealing the bandages.
"She was very good," Loki intones, "as always. She's a quick learner."
"Oh, I missed you," she turns back to Loki and hangs off him, "you should get this coat off and I can welcome you back."
You glance away and work at getting your boots off. You put them on the mat as Loki removes his coat, but not urgently despite your mother's impatience.
"I'm going to unpack," you grab the handle of your suitcase and roll it past her.
"You must be so tired," she chirps after you, "make sure you lay down. Get some rest."
"Sure," you say as you stop by the stairs and retract the handle. You lift the bag by the handle and drag it up step by step.
"Your brother finally left," your mother's birdlike voice carries after you, "thank god. I could hardly stand him hanging around. You know I caught him in her room, snooping around. I told him I wouldn't put up with that."
"Be quiet, Marley," he sneers, "I've driven all day, I don't need you yapping at me like a dog."
"Go look at your magazines and pour another glass," his voice barely reaches you at the top of the stairs.
"Oh, don't be like that," you stop and listen, knowing you should, "I'll suck it. Sweetie, please, I'll do whatever you want."
"I want you to leave me alone," he rebuffs, "shouldn't you be shopping for a white dress? Or do you think the colour might darken at your very sight?"
You continue down the hall and let yourself into the bedroom. You can't even pity her. She chose this. She knew what she was doing and for what? Exactly what Loki said; a white dress and this damned house.
You don't even pity yourself. You don't have the energy. You just want to sleep.
Acceptance is the final stage of grief but the life you had before is hardly worth mourning. A locked door, old movies, and a mother who only ever wanted to be validated by your shortcomings. Acceptance is easier than regret.
Your new life keeps to a routine. There’s that at least.
Wake up, pills, dress in clothes you hate, eat without tasting, go to ‘work’ with Loki, another pill, hide your spite for your mother when you must face her, some other meals in between, two pills in the evening, an hour or two alone to fill with schoolwork or catatonic indifference, then the knock at your door. Him, again. He’s the constant, the only stability in your life. You feel nothing but the dread that resonates through that house.
That day is a new day. Your mother’s through her final two weeks and jovial at her newly claimed freedom.
She wakes you and doesn’t even acknowledge that you’re naked beneath the covers. She trills at you to get up and get going. She’s impatient and completely oblivious of the condom wrapper beside your pillow. Or pretending to be.
“I managed to pick up an appointment at the boutique,” she says as she sways to the door dreamily, “they had a cancellation and called me early this morning. I’m going to need a second opinion. Oh, and your Aunt Moira will meet us there.”
“Moira?” you bat your lashes as you stay hidden beneath the layers of frilly pink, “she’s talking to you again?”
“We’ve reconnected! She’s going to be a bridesmaid. Of course, you can still be maid of honour,” she grips the door handle, “chop, chop, honeybun, we don’t want to be late. We miss this appointment and I’ll be waiting months for the next one.”
You grumble your assurance and wait for her to close the door. You sit up and rub your shoulders as your thighs ache. Last night, Loki was particularly rough. He was angry about something. Odd how you’ve come to read his emotions when you were never very good at that. Silva said that was one of your issues.
You unwrap the bandages and clean the healing cuts. Mostly scabbed now. You put on new dressings, just how Zemo told you, and pull on a lilac coloured dress and swishy kimono with sleeves well past your hands. You look normal even if you don’t feel it. Like a real person.
As you emerge from your room, there’s a shadow just down the hall. You pause and look over at Loki, arms crossed as he watches from outside his office. He’s not happy.
“I’ll miss you today,” he says, “but you must go with Marlena. Make her happy or this…”
“Miss you too,” you lie as you clasp your hands together and bounce on your heels.
“You’ll be cold,” he nods to your dress.
“I know,” you say coolly, “you don’t like it?”
He smirks, “I love it. I want to lift it up right now and… go before that thought gets the best of me.”
You do as he says. That’s always easier. In that week since your return, you’ve learned. To obey, to appease, to recite all the sweet words he wants. You don’t have to mean them. You were naive to ever think that honesty existed.
Your Aunt Moira is a vague memory from your childhood. You haven’t seen her since before your father died. Like most of your family.
She doesn’t look much different than you remember, what you can remember. She sits beside you in the bridal lounge on a long, ivory bench cushioned with velvet. You pick at your sleeves as you wait for your mother to appear after a tedious hour of choosing gowns to try on.
“So…” her smoky voice startles you, “how is school?”
“Okay,” you answer, “I’m passing.”
“Hmm,” she frowns, “just passing.”
“Yep,” you bend your fingers around the edge of the sleeve, “what are you up to, Aunt Moira?”
“I’m here,” she replies, “I had plans to fly out to Barbados but… Marlena finally has her show.”
“This man, Loki,” she interjects, “do you like him?”
You look at her and tilt your head, letting your eyes drift away.
“I don’t really know him too well,” you lie, that feels good. “You know, my mom didn’t introduce us until Christmas, so–”
“Of course she didn’t,” she scowls, “she springs this on me last week. Oh, Moira, I’m getting married. And he’s rich! Can’t tell me another thing about him. At least you’ll be taken care of, I suppose.”
“Yeah, at least,” you agree thinly and hold back a yawn, “I’ve never been to a wedding.”
“Mm, don’t let this one set your expectations,” she rolls her eyes.
“I don’t think I’ll get married,” you confess.
“My advice, don’t,” she laughs dryly, “I never bothered and I’m happy for it. Especially after seeing your mother and all her disasters… sorry, I don’t mean… your father was… conflicted–”
“I barely remember him,” you smile, that extra pill helped.
She doesn’t respond as you hear a rustle and your mother’s voice. She comes out in a large princess gown with too many skirts. Strapless and too young for her. She preens as she steps up on the platform in front of the mirrors as the attendant arranges the heavy fabric around her.
“You don’t think that’s a bit much, Marley?” Moira stands and peers past her sister into the mirrors.
“It’s within budget,” your mother chirps.
“It’s a bit… young for you,” Moira reproaches, “you should at least have some straps–”
“I think it looks nice, besides, I’ve been losing weight,” your mother argues, “honeybun, what do you think?”
You glance over at her, the white tulle and satin makes you sick. “I like it, you should get that one.”
“Not my day,” Moira raises her hands, “I’m gonna go out and have a smoke.”
“Right,” your mother’s tone drops to disappointment, “I’ll… try on another one. When you get back, you can tell me what you think.”
“You’re fifty-two, Mar,” Moira says, “you shouldn’t be wearing white.”
Your mother’s face falls and she nods, “well, maybe I’ll have them pull that dark blue one you liked.”
“Eh,” Moira pulls out her pack of lights, “be back.”
She leaves and your mother deflates. She quickly raises her shoulder and forces a smile at the attendant.
“I think white suits any age,” the redhead assures her, “maybe the silk sheath? I think it’s very elegant.”
“Sure,” your mother steps down, “we’ll try that one.”
You watch her and her eye meets yours. Her throat constricts and her lip curls. Her mask slips in that moment. That’s why she brought you; to make it clear she’s still in charge. She’ll marry Loki and be the lady of the house and you’ll be his whore.
The wedding comes quickly.
The first day of spring brings with it a sense of renewal though life remains much the same. With the season’s beginning comes the semester’s end. You’re failing. You haven’t told your mother or Loki, you don’t think either of them care. It doesn’t matter, you’re not going anywhere.
The ceremony is everything your mother wanted. A mirror image of those magazines across the dining table, pages flipping and flicking, phone calls, venues, tastings. All of it culminates in her special day; a day all for her.
Long white benches and tall vases of pure ivory lilies across a carpet of rich green grass. An arch decorated in ribbons and vines under which she swore herself to Loki, made her deal with the devil; her daughter, her deceit, for designer clothes and vintage wines. A fine theatre for the rows of guests, similarly feigning their happiness for the couple.
The reception occurs in a large tent. Bouquets on every table, the scent of pollen heavy in the air and the buzz of flies irritating guests as they try to enjoy the overpriced but sparse portions. You sit with the bridesmaids, your aunts, Moira and Andrea, and Thor’s two daughters, Tinsley and Tiffany, both blond and tall like their father. They have boyfriends, their plus ones, as you pick at the soy glazed trout.
The night progresses, your mother basking in the attention; the scripted speeches and the couple's first dance. Loki maintains a facade of content but you see those moments his eyes narrow at her sappy shows of elation. You feel okay about it all, the champagne mixes with your pills wonderfully.
The dance floor opens up as Loki leads your mother away and greets his parents in an unheard conversation. They all seem so happy even if you know they’re not.
You sit alone as the table empties and watch Tinsley and Tiffany at the bar, their drink tickets handed over eagerly. Your aunts have gone to glower over your mother and languish in their envy; much of the night they complained of the tacky decor and extravagant taste. You finish the bubbly alcohol and place the glass down, your head swirling pleasantly.
“Princess,” Thor’s voice gives you a start. You laugh at yourself and look up at him. His suit seems absurdly large though it fits him snugly. “How are you?”
“Oh, hi,” you stand and hug him. He stiffens, surprised by your forward gesture, “I’m just wonderful.”
He pulls back and pats your arm, “and school?”
“Great,” you smile, “how are you? Your daughters are so nice!”
“Are they?” he chuckles, “I’m good. I… I’m sorry I left without a goodbye.”
“What? No. It’s okay. I didn’t expect…” your shoulders slump and your cheek twitches. He left you all alone. With Loki. “It’s fine.”
He’s quiet as he stares at you. You avoid his eyes and fumble with the corsage on your wrist, a heavy golden cuff on your other. The scars are hidden well.
“Will you dance with me?” he breaks the lull.
You look at him and raise your brows, “dance? I don’t… I’ve never danced with anyone before.”
“I’ll lead, you follow,” he offers his hand, “so?”
You take his hand and let him guide you amidst the dancing bodies. The music slows as if on cue and he sets your hands on his shoulders, rather chest as he towers over you. You sway to the rhythm, though you struggle to follow the beat. You’re silent as the alcohol distorts the music in your ears and the motion makes you dizzy. You’re sleepy.
You lean into Thor and put your head on his chest as you hug him and listen to his heart.
“You sure you’re okay?” he asks.
“I like dancing like this,” you slur as your eyes wander past his dark sleeve. Loki’s watching you as he keeps his arm through your mother’s. That’s not good but you’re too drunk to care.
You wake up in your room. You don’t remember how the night ended. How many things you forget. It’s kinda silly, like nothing ever happens.
There was music and lights and voices. You remember the exhilaration in your chest as you danced and Thor’s booming tones. Then nothing. Just this. This room. Alone.
You stare at the canopy above. The house is quiet and still, even though several opted to claim a guest room over forking out for a hotel suite. After such a long day, after the final twist of the key in your prison door, it’s so calm. Like nothing’s changed.
It hasn’t really. You’re the same girl. Quiet, weak, afraid. You won’t do anything to stop it. You’ll just let life happen around you. To you. Powerless.
You close your eyes but before the concoction of pills and wine can take over, you’re roused by a noise. Familiar but not comforting. The one you expect, the one that keeps you awake and drives you to drugged detachment.
There’s a stranger at the door. You better let him in.