Silence surrounded the God of Thunder. He wasn't sure whether he was alive or dead. Considering what was happening the last time he remembered having thoughts, dead was the most likely answer. Still, being dead would be a welcomed respite to Ragnarok. So much fire, noise, and death had consumed him there. Even to a legendary warrior like himself it was nearly too much to bear.
Through the void he remembered the sight of Surtur standing as tall as a mountain, towering above Asgard. He could feel it when the demon plunged his fiery sword into the heart of his home, ending it in the blink of an eye. Around Thor his friends and family fought valiantly against the invading hordes, but it was all for not. They were not prepared. Ragnarok was not to come for years, yet it had happened just that day.
The faces of the dead floated through his consciousness. The Warriors Three laid hewn on the steps of the palace. Lady Sif slumped over in his arms. His father Odin yelled defiantly as Sutur's blade pierced through the skin of Asgard and into its heart. The Allfather was consumed by blinding light as Asgard was obliterated.
And Loki...Loki was in the great library when the attack came. It was where Sutur's hordes breached the wall. Thor knew his brother had perished, even if he did not see the body himself. While he and Loki had often not seen eye-to-eye, often leading to some prolific clashes, he was still Thor's brother. He was still family.
Now he was gone. All of them were gone.
Thor had no idea how he survived. He was strong, of course. Possibly the greatest warrior Asgard have ever known. But how he could survive when so many other brave and worthy warriors did not made no sense. He was no more honorable than another Asgardian warrior.
Someone had defied prophecy. Someone had moved the cogs of the universe forward. Whoever had the power to do that was a threat...A threat worthy of a battle with the mighty Thor. Yes. That was what he would do. He would find the one responsible and he would extract revenge. Revenge for the warriors he lost and the destiny that was stolen from him. Asgard and its people were his to protect, and they were taken from him.
A bump into a rocky surface let him know it was time to take stock of his surroundings. Thor cautiously opened his eyes to find himself stuck to a large asteroid in some god forsaken spit of space. The explosion of Asgard was powerful and vast. For all he knew he was on the other side of the cosmos.
Luckily for him, he heard the hum a familiar tool nearby. His heart skipped like a child with anticipation. He may have been nowhere, but he had Mjolnir. The great hammer had never failed him. It was nearly as feared as he was in the Nine Realms. It had taken him from one side of the universe to the other countless times, and had slain ten times as many foes. As long as he had it, he had hope.
Thor stood on shaky legs. He must have been unconscious for longer than he thought. His muscles were far more out of work than expected. It took him a few moments to gain his footing, but then remembered that Mjolnir always made him feel stronger. Holding the hammer would do him good at a time like this.
His hand shot out to the side and he called for the legendary weapon. But it did not come. He waited for far longer than it should have taken, and peered down at his hand.
He began a trek towards where he sensed the hammer was. The rocky, uneven terrain of the asteroid made it a tough time, but he had been worse places. Jotunheim was just as rocky, but everything there was also covered in a maddening layer of ice. It made sticking one's feet for a proper blow on a Frost Giant tricky. But he could do that with little effort. Few others could. As far as Thor knew, Odin was the only other one as adept at fighting there as anywhere else.
After a short trek, he saw the hammer's metallic, brick-shaped head glisten in the starlight. Its dragon-leather wrapped handle pointed up like a sign post pointing Thor the way. He could see the runes carved into the Uru metal that comprised the hammer. They were the spells Odin and the Dwarves had inlaid into the hammer at its creation.
The God of Thunder smiled and approached. He bent down to pick up the weapon, but as his hand pulled he felt the weight of the universe pull back against him. Confused, he pulled again but the hammer did not budge. Thor attempted to pull with both arms and still it did not shift. Becoming panicked, he pulled with all his considerable might. His feet began to dig into the hard rock of the asteroid. He felt its crust cracking beneath him.
Yet Mjolnir did not budge."Unworthy."
The word slipped from his tongue as a whisper. Mjolnir was not like other weapons. The various spells and incantations that had been placed on it gave it something of a mind of its own. If it did not feel its bearer was worthy, it could not be picked up. And Thor had now been deemed unworthy.
The Asgardian prince fell to his knees in despair.
**********The alarm went off
, rousing Peter Quill from his bunk on the Milano. He fumbled for the switch, but decided to let the song play instead. It had been too long since he had heard it, and for whatever reason it helped nurse his hangover. He needed to remember to stop drinking with Skrull outriders. They could change their tolerance levels on a whim. It wasn't fair."Ugh,"
the Ravager grumbled. "Status report."
He squinted through blurry eyes at the display screen. The ship's sensors had picked up something valuable in the nearby asteroid field. Didn't look like much according to the readout. But maybe it was some sort of ancient crap that some collector would spend way too many units on. Those were Quill's favorite things to find. Something that took no effort to collect and paid off enough to satisfy Yondu and allow Peter to pocket some money on the side."Quill!" "Speak of the devil,"
Peter groaned to himself as the blue face of the Ravager leader appeared on the screen."You're late in getting your share. We don't get no profits, we don't enjoy life. So what you waitin' on?""Yondu,"
Quill rubbed his temples in an effort to quell the headache that was rising back up in his head, "I've got something coming in later today. I'm about to pick it up. Once I do, we'll be square.""You best be right, boy,"
Yondu sneered as the feed cut out.
The human flashed an obscene gesture at the screen as it went black. Yondu may have saved Quill's skin years ago, but he was a gigantic prick. Still, life as a Ravager wasn't half bad. He got to see the stars, drink, steal, and screw whatever the hell he wanted to. There were worse ways to spend ones time as an insignificant speck in an unforgiving cosmos.
Now it was time to collect his trinket and get paid far too much money for far too little work.
Quill allowed the Milano to track into the location of the object, and brought the ship down deftly onto the surface of the asteroid. He slapped on his breather mask and sauntered down the ramp. At the end of it, he saw whatever the ship's sensors had picked up. It was some sort of warhammer. Whatever it was it looked ancient. Definitely something some crusty old collector would pay top dollar for. He couldn't believe his luck on that."Well my friend, you are coming with me,"
he chuckled to himself as he bent down to pick up the hammer.
Before his hand touched the pommel, however, he felt a presence move behind him. Not much could survive in the vacuum of space, and whatever did wasn't friendly, generally. In a fluid motion he pulled the Element Guns from his belt and pointed them at whatever drew his attention.
Standing there between him and the landing ramp of the Milano was the most impressive figure Quill had ever seen. Standing at a solid six-foot-five at the very least and with broad muscular build, a blond guy that looked like he fell off the cover of a trashy romance novel glared at Quill with grossed arms. His hair seemed to billow in the wind, which of course was impossible because there was no wind.
Peter cocked his head to the side, "I clearly have been in space for far too long.""Thou shalt not defile Mjolnir with your touch, mortal,"
the blond bodybuilder replied. "How did you find us?""Okay, first of all, Hasselhoff, I wouldn't be defiling anything. I just washed my hands,"
Quill didn't drop his guns. "Second of all, my ship picked up your, what did you call it, Mojang? So relax. If it's yours I'll just-"
He fired with the Element Guns, but the half-linebacker, half-model dove out of the way with frightening speed. Before Quill could react, the man had slapped the guns out of his hands and had the pirate by the throat."That was a grave mistake,"
the other growled through the blond beard on his face. "Not many attack the God of Thunder and live. So give me a reason not to crush your throat.""*Ack*,"
Quill struggled against the strength of the man. He was stronger than he had any right to be. He was big, but this was superhuman. Through a struggled, horse tone he explained, "Because you're clearly stuck here. I have a ship. I know how to fly it. I can get you where you want to go."
The mountain of a man considered his words while staring him down with narrowed eyes. After a few moments, he dropped Peter back to the rocky crust of the asteroid. He turned and began to board the Milano, "Be warned, pirate. If thou darest to fire on me again, thou shall receive a swift chariot to Hel.""Yea, sure Shakespeare,"
Peter responded with a chuckled. Before he went to join the hulking individual on the ship, he bent down to pick up the hammer. But it was heavier than a freaking elephant. "Geez..."
A few moments later, the Milano took back off into the far reaches of space.