Summary: Post- Avengers. Loki was sent to Earth as part of his punishment and has nightmares. Non slash. Brotherly love. Characters/Pairings: Loki, Thor Rating: K+ A/N: I intended this fic to be a song-fic based on a song "Falling Inside the Black" by Skillet, but I don't think I succeeded in doing that. I would constructive criticism, please. Enjoy. Inside the BlackWith a gasp, he shot upright. He looked frantically around his surroundings, breathing hard from terror, trying to comfort himself with the semi- familiar room.Loki heaved a shaking breath and held his head in his hands. He feared the Chitauri- even worse Thanos- were near. He feared that his jailors would be only too happy to hand him to his former allies. That this is what his nightmares are telling him.It had been a few weeks ago when Loki was sent back to Midgard with Thor to serve out his sentence. He was to obey the commands given to him by the Avengers, living in Stark Tower. To ensure he would cooperate, he had been stripped of his magic. In essence, Loki was at the mercy of this small band and Pepper.After a week of servitude, the nightmares started. Loki tried to convince himself that they were not real. They were only his fears amplified. Whatever he told himself, the terror caused him do his work silently. The nightmares had only grown worse since.In them, Loki had been captured by the Chitauri. He would be bound to something that felt like a pole ad be tortured until all rational, intelligent thought had been driven out of his head by the agony and cruelty.The worst of the nightmares, however, is when he could see Thor. He would scream and beg for the god of thunder to help him. Thor's only response would be to laugh and encourage Loki's tormentor to mete out greater agony. Loki would, then, feel hopeless and abandoned. At the end of the dream, he would hear the Other's voice hissing in his ear, "He will make you long for something sweet as pain." His tormenter would morph from a Chitauri into Thanos.It was from this nightmare, Loki had woken from tonight.In the privacy of his dark room, Loki allowed himself to shed a few terrified tears. He feared his nightmare is becoming a reality.Ever since Loki had refused to stop the war on what the mortals called New York, Thor was cold whenever Loki was in his presence. When he entered the room, Thor would become silent and ignore him. It surprised Loki how much it hurt him, but he buried it and pretended he wasn't affected. He told himself that he was used to being ignored. After all, he had always been the shadow in Thor's brilliance. Somehow, he could never make himself believe he was unhurt.Loki berated himself for becoming soft and sentimental when the tears wouldn't stop. If anything, they seemed to fall harder. With an angry groan, Loki pressed the heel of his palms against his eyes and flopped back down on his pillow. He, then, started cursing Thor in his mind.If only that fool had listened to Odin's words and had not grown arrogant, the Jotun, the Chitauri, the destruction of this Midgardian city… none of these events would have happened, he thought, angrily.However, he knew deep down that he would have still made certain some of these events would have happened due to his own pride and fierce desire to be considered Thor's equal. Though, blaming Thor did stop the tears and helped him regain a very small calm.Before Loki could calm himself further, his door opened and a blonde head poked inside. "Loki?" the person asked. Loki groaned silently. It was just his luck that Thor would come to him at such a time.Thor opened the door wider and stepped inside, not fooled by Loki's silence. He closed the door and made his way to Loki's side.He had been dreaming of the past, of how his relationship with Loki had been different. When they were children, they were as close as two brothers could possibly be. However as they grew up, they grew apart. Thor preferred to fight than to study. Loki was the opposite. As Thor fought with Mjolnir, Loki fought with illusions and daggers, both suiting his personality. They were opposite sides of a coin, but complimenting each other nicely.When Thor had awoken, he had had a sudden urge to see Loki, to make certain he was alright. Even if his caution earned him a mocking laugh."Loki," he said quietly, once he stood over Loki. "You do not fool me, brother. I could always tell when you were faking slumber."He was rewarded with an irritated growl. "I am not your brother, Thor. No matter how many times you profess the term, it will not change that fact."Thor shook his head. "You are wrong, Loki. We may not have the same blood, but we have still grown up together and share many experiences."Loki opened his eyes and Thor was startled to see his eyes were rimmed red. "What is wrong, Loki?" Thor asked.Loki quickly turned his head away. "This is the evidence of you interrupting my much needed sleep," he said, angrily."No, brother, something bad troubles you."When Loki remained silent, Thor sighed. "Alright, if you do not tell me, I shall stay here until you do." To prove his point, he sat on the edge of Loki's bed.Loki sighed in annoyance. He knew Thor was stubborn and meant what he said. All most against his will, he sat up and dropped the false bravado. "Nightmares," he whispered, terrified. Thor looked at him with concern as Loki proceeded to tell him about the nightmares.When Loki stopped, Thor asked him, "How long have the nightmares plagued you?""Two weeks," Loki responded, trying to keep his voice steady."Loki, why have you kept these to yourself? Surely you could have told-""Told whom?" Loki spat. "I am here as a servant, brother, to yourself and your mortals. To whom would you suggest I tell my weakness? Stark, perhaps? Barton? No, they would tear me apart if I have told even one of their number."Thor gently placed his hand on Loki's upper arm. "Yet, you have told me."Loki snorted. "Only because you forced me.""Have I betrayed you confidence before, Loki? When we were children, even if it got us both into trouble?"Loki dropped his gaze. "You have not," he admitted, grudgingly."So shall it be now. You have nothing to fear from me," Thor promised.Loki met Thor's gaze, searchingly. He, soon, felt himself relax, knowing that Thor had not lied. He gave a nod and looked away again.A smile bloomed on Thor's lips as he wordlessly rose to leave. He was now sure that his brother was still there.He stopped, suddenly, when he felt a hand on his wrist. Thor looked down and saw Loki gripping his wrist with fear in his eyes. "Don't leave me alone. Please… help me."Thor resumed his seat and covered his brother's hand with his own. "Fear not, brother," he whispered.Thor kept watch over his Loki until the morning, making sure his brother did not fall into the black abyss of his nightmares.EndA/N: I apologize for the weird formatting. This site and FFN are, apparently, not that compatible. I'll try to fix it at a later date.