Warnings/Notes: WIP, Crossover/AU. Methos/OC, Clint Barton/Natasha Romanov implied, Methos & Duncan. This is probably set after The Avengers, but trying to avoid getting totally Jossed, so I'll withhold a firm decision till May.
Character(s): Methos, Loki, Nick Fury, Duncan MacLeod, Clint Barton, Thor, Phil Coulson, Natasha Romanov, Charlotte Sparrow
Summary: Methos doesn't believe in fairy tales – or gods.
Loki didn't believe in playing fair. He'd given MacLeod a spear to fight with, but against the magician's power, it was of little use.
As it began, there was only Loki, armed similarly. But that Loki was soon joined by a dozen doppelgängers, surrounding the Highlander on the metal platform, his weapon useless against them. But his foes had a bite, their spears slashing at the Immortal 'til his shirt was in shreds, drenched in blood.
Methos stood silently next to Barton, wishing for the hundredth time that Mac had done as he'd promised, and had remained with Charlotte. Barton clenched his fists, and Methos knew that he was having a difficult time restraining his anger. "We'll get through this," he said softly. "He's had worse; so have I."
Barton glanced up at Methos, lips tight. Then he said, "It's like a cat playing with a mouse. If I could just—"
"But you can't!" Methos interrupted with a fierce whisper. "Loki holds all the cards, holds Charlotte's life in his hands. That is reality; I shouldn't have to remind you."
"Wise words, ancient one," said Loki from behind them.
The two men whirled, both reaching for weapons they no longer had. The god laughed, striding past them, waving his hand, the doppelgängers disappearing. Duncan had fallen to his knees, spent from the battle, lungs heaving. Loki crouched next to him, holding what appeared to be a polished rectangle of crystal, which glowed a deep violet light from within.
"Well fought. Even Thor would have been impressed. Think what you might be if you only embraced what you are." The last was said softly, as if Loki weren't quite sure what exactly that might be. Standing, he motioned for Methos to join them.
Methos held out a hand, helping Duncan to his feet. "I'm sorry, for all of it," he told his friend quietly.
"Yeah, I know." Duncan shot him a crooked grin. "You had to be a secret agent."
Methos snorted. "Like you haven't always harboured a desire to be James Bond."
"This all very touching." Loki pushed between the Immortals. He pointed to the spear that was still in Duncan's hand. "Kill him."
"Now, wait just a minute," Duncan sputtered.
"You'd prefer that Jeeves take his place?" Loki motioned back at Barton.
"He'll do as you ask," Methos interjected, before Duncan could respond to Loki's threat. Clint Barton was a warrior, and a credit to SHIELD, but he was also very mortal. Keeping his friend alive was paramount to Methos. And Romanov would take his head herself if he didn't.
Loki smirked. "I wasn't asking, Methos, but as long as he complies—"
Methos curled his hand over the one that Duncan held the spear in. "Just do it." He gave the Highlander what he hoped was a reassuring smile, before stepping back, holding his arms wide.
"Methos, I'm sorry." Duncan raised the spear.
"You and me both."
Charlotte was alone, or so it seemed. Loki had wished her fair dreams at her chamber door the evening before, telling her she must rest, but this morning, he was nowhere to be found. On waking, she had dressed—another grey silk gown, covered with a cloak of soft black fur—beginning a methodical search of all the rooms, mapping the place in her mind. Everywhere she was reminded of winter, be it out the windows that it seemed every room had, or the furnishings and draperies. There was no colour; all was black, white, or grey. Occasionally, there was the gleam of silver, or the reflection of firelight on glass, but it was as if this place were merely an extension of the desolation that lay beyond its walls. No laughter, no joy, no warmth. She did not know how the woman that Loki claimed she was could bear such a barren existence.
Ebony doors, three times her height, gleamed at the end of the corridor. She had not been here before. Placing her palms against them, she pushed, and despite their massive size, they opened with barely a whisper. The room beyond equaled the doors in size, walls of glistening marble, the colour of fresh fallen snow, reaching up to the heavens, curving above to meet almost beyond her view. In the center, the only thing in the room, a round table, small, not more than two feet across. It had been carved from one piece of the same marble as the walls. On it was a black vase, brimming with white roses.
Approaching, Charlotte reached out a hand, fingertips brushing the petals. Something seemed so familiar, whatever the memory might be, constricting her heart. A voice, not her King's, echoed from somewhere in her past, 'What did he do to you?'. "What did he do to me?" she whispered, hand pressing against her throat. Pulling it away, she looked at her palm, expecting to see blood, yet there was none. She drew a rose from the vase, staring at it, willing it to give the answers she sought. A thorn pierced her finger, blood welling up, the red of it almost brilliant in the monochrome of her surroundings; she was transfixed.
One drop of blood, then another, fell onto the pristine white of the marble. It seemed to her as if time froze. Her heart beat once, and then once more—it was the only sound she heard. Panic overtook reasoned thought. Crushing the rose in her hand, she whirled, knowing she had to escape this place of winter, escape the man who claimed to be her husband. A scream escaped her lips, Loki seeming to materialize from nowhere. He grasped her wrist, twisting it, the rose falling to the ground. It was if her blood had turned ice.
As she collapsed into unconsciousness at his feet, he smiled. "I am not quite ready for you to remember, little Immortal. For a while yet, it pleases me that you remain my queen."
Nick Fury looked around the hospital room. Between Stark and Standish, the place was practically an arboretum crossed with an exploding gift shop. He knew they both felt as helpless as he did, all hopes pinned to the three men who had made it their mission to bring back an antidote.
A gleam drew his attention. Moving closer to the table by Charlotte's bed, he reached down, picking up a snow globe that had been practically obscured by the greenery around it. Shaking it, he watched the fake snow as it fell over a forest encased in glass. Then he sighed, setting it down between a stuffed hedgehog and a dragon figurine, where she would be able to see it when she woke; Charlotte would like the snow globe. He didn't see the spark of fire from within—one that was swiftly smothered as the falling snow seemed to become a blizzard, raging across a world trapped in glass.