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Between Darkness and DawnDrip drip drip .
Darkness thick as binding pitch did little to stifle the ceaselessly damnable echoes in Loki's prison beneath the mountain. He tried to shut it out, dozing fitfully when he dared to close his eyes. Endless, the stream of poison dropped (drip drip ) into the bowl held above his head, a steady rain of vengeance....
He'd liked the rain, once. He used to sit outside all afternoon some days watching the downpour, wondering what adventures Thor had gone off on, wishing he'd come along. But today .
"Father?" Frightened and sleepy, Loki's youngest son padded over to him on cat-silent feet, folded himself into his lap.
"Narvi?" Loki was surprised; Sigyn had put the children to bed hours ago. "What is it?"
The child buried his small face in his father's shoulder. "Th-the storm s-scares me."
Loki almost laughed, but restrained himself.
The Coffee GodThe Coffee God behind the counter shuffles foot to foot, a dance of steam and espresso. Black painted fingernails, inch gauged ears and a gray striped sweatshirt, hood crooked on his back. There's a cigarette tucked behind one ear; it bobs and twitches with each step.
“Non-fat caramel latte,” he calls, just as he always does, part of a spell, part of a mantra, toneless (just a tuck at the end). I reach. He looks up.
The espresso maker hisses.
There's something like a grin, something like a spark, something like a shared secret linked eye to eye. When he passes over the drink (rough cardboard sleeve hot to the touch), he lingers. Our fingers brush, a shiver, a jolt, a ten-watt shock.
The Coffee God tilts his chin, shouts, “Hey, mind if I take my break now?”
and ducks around the counter without waiting for a reply.
He slips his cigarette between his lips without taking his eyes from mine. I follow him out the door.
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