Sigyn loved the fire.
She sat in front of the fireplace. While sitting there she felt so much more than just the heat of the flames. Her hands played with the sparks that leapt about, but they never burned her.
Fire had always a special meaning for the blind woman, because it was the only thing her eyes could see. Even if the whole world around her was hidden in the depths of darkness, for some reason it didn`t count for the golden flames. She loved to watch them dancing. Sometimes it felt like they were dancing just for her.
Since their birth Sigyn was blind and deaf, she had never seen her mother, never the sun nor the moon, but she saw herself every night in her dreams. Since the beginning of her time, she had only one dream, over and over again. Back then as a child, now as a woman she saw herself on fire. Although she had never seen herself in any reflection, Sigyn always knew that it was her who was ablaze in her dreams. But instead of pain, fear and suffering she felt nothing but an incredible joy, an inward feeling of happiness, a security that she had never felt before. Even not in her mother's arms.
Although if most feared an uncontrolled fire, even if it was known of destroying everything and often bringing death and suffering, for Sigyn it meant nothing like that, but lif. A feeling of home, of arrival. She never had felt fear of flames. Indeed they were magically attracted to the woman, as they would call after her. Once she was asleep in her dream she saw herself dancing with the fire, as if they were one and she awake in a desire no one could took it away from her.
Why was she like that? Why she could see the fire, but otherwise only darkness? Why could hear the crackle when everything else around her remained in silence?
The flames curled around her slender fingers as if they wanted to take Sigyn by hand. The fire had always been nice to her, since she could think. The young woman smiled. How much she loved the fire. It pleased her heart.
Outside, a storm had come up. Although it was day, the thunder clouds darkened the sky. Lightning flashed across the sky, followed by a rumble. The storm was right over the little huts. Loki, knowing what that meant did not respond. For days he just sat there, barely moving, and if he did, he only did to give Sigyn some food or rekindle the fire again.
He had neither eaten nor drunk. But also felt no desire for it. Apathetic he sat in a corner of the room. His eyes focused on Sigyn, who sat in front of a fireplace. She smiled all the time. Such a wonderful smile.
With a loud bang the door was opened. Loki did not move when men of Asgard came in.
"He's here," shouted one of them out. "He's alive," said another one, "At least I think so," he added, after he took a second look at the cowering Loki. At that moment, another man entered the room, larger and stronger than all of the other, dressed in a heavy armor. In his hand he held a mighty hammer. Thor looked down to Loki. Even if it was not noticable the God of Thunder was shocked by the way Loki presented himself to him. He was only a shadow of himself. His bones wore hardly a pound of meat and his face was haggard, dark circles around his eyes let Thor only imagine how many sleepless nights Loki might had. Even in prison of Asgard the God had looked far more alive than now.
"Loki," Thor's voice sounded like thunder, but even now there was no reaction in Loki's face, not even when Thor was bending down in front of him. It seemed as if Loki saw right through him with glazed eyes. "It was your magic that you once betrayed again," said Thor. "Even Odin did not believe in your death. He sends me to bring you back to Asgard again. "
Loki`s pupils moved, seemed to fix Thor shortly, but then they went on again. Thor followed his gaze. Sigyn was still sitting by the fire. She seemed to be oblivious to everything around her. As if nothing had happened she stretched out her hands to the crackling fire, only her fingers moved shrugging, as if she was summoned the flames.
Thor twisted his expression thoughtful and looked back at Loki. His eyes were glazed and empty, almost in a trance. His half opened mouth fought for air. His weak breathing sounded more like a pathetic gasp. Even as Thor repeatedly tapped his bony cheeks with his hand, Loki did not respond. Only when the thunder god seized him by the shoulders, Loki pushed powerless his hands away from him and stood up unsteadily. The men, who accompanied Thor pulled their weapons, but the God in the heavy armor just raised his hand and let Loki grant his tottering steps. He crawled to Sigyn, who sat still smiling in front of the fireplace and played with the flames. But once she realized that Loki approached, her face contorted. The smile faded into a rigid, expressionless mask and her fingers sank motionless in her lap. All her childish beauty had faded and just a serious figure, motionless and without any signs of joy was left.
Loki stopped his moving and went back to his place. As soon as he turned away from her, Sigyn began to smile again and stretched her arms after the fire.
Loki whimpering squatted down again, almost looking for help he glanced up at Thor before his eyes felt back into apathy.
Quickly the men seized him, pulled the pathetic figure high on their shoulders. Loki did not fight them. His head hung weak down to shoulders when they dragged him out of the hut, but Thor stood in their way. "Leave him," he said. The guards looked at him in disbelieve. "But Thor, he needed to be punished! He must return to Asgard! You know Odin's words! "
"Better than any other", the God answered. "Which eternal prison could be better than Midgard?"
Confused, the men looked at each other.
"Leave him!" Repeated the God, this time with more vigor.
Immediately the men left their grip of Loki, who felt to the ground like a stone. Even now he did not want to move. He just turned his body toward Sigyn and still remained himself at the feet of the guards.
"Look at him mow," cried Thor to his suite. "Is that the same Loki, who we have feared? Even in chains, we could not stop him! Weren`t we always defeated by his malice? Over and over again?" Thor looked down at Loki. "If no chains in Asgard were able to arrest him, so Midgard will be. From now on, this world will be his prison. He will never be able to leave it. On Midgard the time passed much faster. Here his hair will turn into gray soon and his flesh will rot, even then Hel could not help him anymore."
"But Thor" one of the men spoke. "He is a master of magic. He needed guards."
Thor laughed. "Those same guards who allowed him to escape from Asgard? No, my loyal friends, the guard he needs is already here." The God of Thunder pointed to Sigyn. "For some reason she controls him better than any guard or any god could. Just look what she has made out of him in such a short time. Even during his imprisonment in Asgard, we were unable to do something like that. This place is his destiny. So we leave him here. We will not have to complain his actions anymore."
Thor made a gesture to the men to leave the hut they followed immediately. But the god himself still needed a moment.
Sighing he bent down to Loki and helped him sit up again. Thor looked directly in his eyes. There was nothing of the once blazing light, nothing of the strength, but emptiness.
"What happened to you?" Thor asked himself. His eyes strayed to Sigyn. She was just a woman. How was she able to do something what even not the gods were able to? She had taken Loki in invisible chains, which were stronger than any magicals bonds of Asgard. She had turned Loki into a true prisoner, a helpless man.
Before Thor left the hut and returned to Asgard, he pressed Loki close to him once and patted him gently on the shoulder. "Good luck," he whispered in his ear.
Thor knew that he would never see Loki again as he left the hut.