|Cristobal Rodriguez ♦ Coyote (coyoti) wrote in paxletalelogs,|
@ 2017-02-20 10:42:00
|Entry tags:||coyote, loki|
check one check two, you know what to do
Who: Nish [Loki] & Chris [Coyote].
What: Loki is making a getaway and Coyote gives him a leg ... paw? ... up.
When: Here and later.
Being the moon had become far too dull too quickly. Sure, at first it had seemed like great fun -- all he had to do was curl into a little ball and reflect light from the sun. Coyote, ever the good-natured sort, was eager to help others, always amenable to suggestions. Plus, it was far too fun to show up Fox and Raven, when both had failed in their roles as the moon. But the repetitiveness of the endeavor was starting to drive him a little mad; who could really blame him for looking for some kind of entertainment?
But people yelled and grumbled at him when he was caught spying on them in their baths; a man stealing cured meat for food cursed Coyote for being caught. Another group of men who were gambling were upset when Coyote happily congratulated the man who was cheating. More and more this job was turning out to be no fun in the slightest, up until Coyote spied a bird flying with something in its talons. Not just any bird, but an eagle; not his friend, Eagle, but someone or something different. Something much bigger. Coyote narrowed his eyes from his place in the sky, trying to figure out just what he was seeing.
Loki had stopped to rest, perched high in a tree, covered by the top branches. He looked up, his hawk-eyes scanning the skies even in the darkness, spotting the giant eagle circling high above, searching for him. The moon shone high above him, illuminating everything between his tree and Asgard - if he left its cover, he’d be exposed, and both him and his charge would be killed.
He looked down, inspecting the tiny nut clutched tightly in his talons. It was inert, but she could feel the power nestled within its shell, thrumming against his claws with the warmth of life. ‘I’m sorry,’ he thought, but would never say. ‘I didn’t mean for this to happen.’
‘You’re just sorry you got caught,’ the goddess seemed to reply, ‘you’re sorry that now your life is now forfeit without me.’
‘Do not anger me, lady,’ he replied, his eyes hardening, his talons gripping the nut tighter, almost tight enough to crack it, ‘I hold your life in my hands.’
‘And yours as well,’ she replied calmly. ‘Bring me to Asgard,’ she ordered. He forced his anger back, loosening his grip on the nut.
‘We’re too exposed,’ he said, ‘the moon is too bright tonight, he’ll spot us the second I take flight.’ He poked his head above the branches, just enough to have a clear view of the sky, glaring at the moon. But then he saw something strange...it wasn’t the moon he knew. It was something...else. “Who are you?” he demanded of it angrily. “You are not the moon! Why must you impede my flight?”
Coyote shrugged. "I'm not stopping you from anything, friend. Why is that eagle chasing you?"
Loki’s eyes flitted between the eagle and the moon, both fearful and angry. “I took something back that he stole,” he said, gripping the nut in his talons more securely, protectively. “And now he looks for revenge.”
Coyote nodded; it sounded like a truthful enough tale, and if he were honest, he didn't rightly care what this other bird had done. If he was serving the greater good, no further information was needed, and Coyote quickly saw a fun game in the making.
"Tell you what, friend," he offered, uncurling a little from his place in the sky. "I can't do much about the light; the people need it. If I didn't do it, they'd skin me," which was a lie, but Coyote made it sound convincing enough. "But I can do this for you instead; take off, and let the eagle see you. When he does, he'll make himself a nice big target. See, I can reach these stones in the sky easily from here, and I can try to slow him down so you can make it back to wherever you need to go." With one paw, he motioned at the stars around him, even reaching out to grasp one and pluck it from its velvety black moorings. He bounced it in-paw, giving evidence to his suggestion.
It seemed far too good to be true, and in his experience, those things usually were. His pupils contracted into slits, watching the animal with distrust. “How do I know you will do this for me?” he asked. “How do I know that you won’t just lure me out of hiding, only to make sport of my death?” He wanted to trust the Coyote, but trust didn’t come easily to one who so often breaks it with others.
Coyote shrugged again, tossing the star in his paw like a ball. "You don't. But you also don't have much of a choice, do you? Either you can wait there and wither away until the eagle leaves, or you can run now, and hope he doesn't catch you.
"Tell you what, though. I'm so bored up here, and I need some kind of amusement. This would be a fine game for me, to make sure you get to this place you need to go. I swear on my father's head that I won't strike you, and you know that's a bond worth keeping. How many people would offer up their parents so easily?" Of course, Coyote didn't have any parents, but this bird didn't know that. And all Coyote really wanted was some fun; he hoped his words would be explanation enough to goad the bird into flight.
Loki laughed. “My parents are long dead, friend,” he said, “And gods slew theirs to form the world. So you'll forgive me if that does not create much assurance for me.”
He paused, considering. “But you are right, I cannot stay here. I have no choice but to accept your offer. And if you succeed, you will have earned the gratitude of Loki.” He didn't offer it up lightly; it would further ensure his safety, if the Coyote was owed a favour.
Coyote smiled with his long muzzle full of carnivore teeth. He liked this offer, inasmuch as it was true. He didn't know this Loki fellow, but it sounded like a promising idea in the very least. He tossed the star once more, and then palmed it, nodding.
"We will begin once you take flight, then, friend. Whenever you're ready."
Loki braced himself. He was not accustomed to relying on others, though taking advantage of them was a different matter. But he was in a bind - if he didn’t make it back to Asgard with the goddess, alive and unharmed, his life would be forfeit. Freya had helped him though, so he supposed she at least of the gods could be trusted to aid him if necessary. Even now her cloak protected him, shifting his form into that of the hawk he now appeared to be.
With a flex of his powerful legs, he pushed himself airborn, his powerful wings spreading out as he burst from the tree like a rocket. Immediately, he heard the cry of the eagle behind him, and knew he’d been spotted. Eyes wide and watchful, he sped off towards Asgard, talons gripping the precious nut containing the goddess tightly, not daring to look right or left, but listening hard for what would happen behind him.
Coyote watched and waited, seeing the eagle sight its prey and dive in for the kill. He took careful aim with the star in his paw, and let loose with a strong throw. The star streaked across the sky, catching the attention of many below.
"Coyote's up to something again," one of the people muttered, shaking his head. Coyote took no offense, though he heard their grumblings, instead having too much fun after seeing the star make contact with the precise spot he'd pinpointed -- the eagle's head. The bird was knocked askew from the sky, the strike completely unseen. Coyote howled, pleased with himself, and quickly grabbed another star to see what more mischief he could cook up.
Loki heard the hit, and braced for impact, but it was behind him, not on him. He’d half expected the Coyote to have his fun with him instead of the giant chasing him, but to his delight, a quick glance behind him revealed that the eagle had slowed down significantly, giving him a much better lead than he would have otherwise. He heard the whoop of laughter above him and smiled to himself, though his current form wouldn’t allow for a real one. He would make it now, he had been given enough lead time that he doubted the giant would catch him before he made it to the city.
He risked a glance up to the sky, to the moon, and now he saw clearly the Coyote dancing inside the giant shining disc. He laughed with the same glee as his new friend, changing his trajectory to glide higher up, effortlessly through the sky, gaining speed. “Thank you, my friend,” he said, “your help will not be forgotten.” He doubted the Coyote truly understood what a boon a favour from Loki could be, but he would learn.
Coyote turned back to congratulate Loki in turn, but over the bird's winged shoulder he saw the eagle regaining its flight.
"Don't leave the work half-finished, bird," he cautioned, plucking another star from the sky. "Also, you may want to move slightly to the left, or this next throw might singe your feathers."
Loki banked left and felt the heat of the star flying past him, followed by a satisfying screech behind him. He laughed again, feeling free and giddy with flight and excitement and the certainty that he would actually make it back to Asgard, and that the price would be lifted from his head.
“Your aim is true, my friend. I am glad you are on my side!”
Coyote's laughter mingled with Loki's, so pleased was he with the outcome of their little game. He grew so amused that he turned his back for a moment to see how the people were responding -- their confusion regarding the mess of falling stars left them frightened and unsure. They were cowering in their huts, waiting for whatever was transpiring to be over.
Behind him, the charred, much-abused eagle redoubled his efforts, climbing into the sky once more, unwilling to allow his prize to escape.
Overconfident, Loki began taunting the eagle, flying with loops and twirls, toying with the giant who was becoming increasingly frustrated with every passing moment. He could see Asgard up ahead, the shining city drawing closer with every second, bringing hope to him that soon he would be free once more.
Up ahead, he could see with his superior hawk vision that the gods were setting up a gigantic pyre directly in his path. He laughed and called out to Coyote. “Look, my friend, the gods are preparing a welcome mat for my pursuer!” he could see their plan as clearly as if he'd devised it, and he steered directly towards the growing flames.
The eagle brought its talons to bear, desperate to reach Loki before the god in hawk form escaped from his clutches. Coyote turned back, and saw the sight. He quickly grabbed another start from the sky and hurled it in the eagle's direction, hitting the bird squarely on his feathery behind. The bird of prey was so surprised that it jumped up into the air, and then went spiraling down into the flames. Whether or not that was the gods' intention was beyond Coyote, but he found the sight to be hilarious all the same. He fell over laughing.
Loki’s laugh mingled with that of Coyote, and he flew high above the flames, the heat only just barely tickling his underside. The way was clear, and far below he could see the commotion on the ground, the giant shedding his feathered form and the gods sending him off to Hel. Loki flew high into the air, a victory loop that brought him high enough that the moon filled his vision. “Many thanks, my friend,” he said. “If ever you find yourself in trouble, Loki will come to your aid.” And with that he glided back down to the ground, placing the precious nut on the ground and shedding Freya’s cloak. With a touch of his now human finger, the nut transformed into the form of the beautiful goddess, and she was again reunited with her family.