I’m a huge Kiss fan, but even for me this was a weird purchase. Basically, I saw Smashes, Thrashes & Hits in my local record store for $2 and I wanted to hear Let’s Put the X in Sex and (You Make Me) Rock Hard for the first time in many years, as those two songs were recorded specifically for this release in 1988. Both songs are rather silly, but still fun of course. I didn’t realize until now how similar Rock Hard sounded to Silver Spoon from Hot in the Shade.
The rest of the album is essentially a greatest hits package, but the mixes of each of the 70s songs were completely re-done, which makes for an interesting listen as a change-up every now and then. Also, the song Beth was re-recorded featuring Eric Carr on vocals.
You were sitting on the floor next to him when the light
left his eyes, your hand over his when it dropped away lifelessly. Reaching up slowly, you touched the side of
his neck, waiting…waiting…waiting to feel something, but there was no pulse
there, no heart beat that would give you or Fury any hope. “Nick…”
“Medical team is on it’s way to your location.”
“They’re here. They
called it,” Fury replied in a solemn tone.
He looked at you, watching you wipe Coulson’s blood from your hands and
onto your uniform, feeling completely helpless.
“So now what, agent (Y/L/N)? I’m
open to ideas.”
You took a deep breath, clearing your mind of the anger and
hatred that filled you in this moment, having watched as Loki cut your friend
down. Remembering the audacity of him
trying to lure you away with him, and the look in his eyes when he was
rejected. The only reason that you were
still alive was because he believed that he cared for you. Right now, you couldn’t believe that Loki was
capable of anything more than evil.
“Director, this was never going to work if they didn’t have
something…” you paused, searching your mind for the answer, “if they didn’t
have something to bring them together.
Something that made the fight worth it enough to be a team.” You glanced down as the medics lifted your
friend from the floor and onto the gurney to take him away, suddenly seeing the
answer clearly in front of you.
“I think we might have it now.”
This had to work. If
the team had any chance of stopping Loki or this army that he had ready, you
needed to get the Avengers to work together.
“Alright, Phil, help me out,” you mumbled to yourself as you opened his
locker, pulling the small pile of Captain America trading cards out and into
your pocket. You closed the door gently,
leaning forward to rest your forehead against it, taking a moment alone to say
goodbye to your friend and mentor.
Your spine stiffened at the sound of Loki’s voice behind you,
and your blood ran cold. When you turned
to face him he was nothing more than a hologram, faltering in its image
slightly as the distance between you grew greater. “What would you know of sentiment? You tried to trick me into thinking that you
cared about me somehow,” you snapped, “which I never really believed
anyway. You were going to use me against
my own team. You know nothing of
feelings, of sentiment, of love. You’re
The image of him stomped towards you with an angry
expression, making you step back reflexively, even though he wasn’t real. “I am not nothing, (Y/N). You shall see that soon enough. When this is done, you will see that by my
side is where you belong. You will see.” Loki’s image was now directly in front of
you, so close that your bodies would be touching if he were real. “And I do care for you, darling. Very much.
From the very first moment, I knew.
I think that you did as well.”
His false hand reached up to touch your cheek, but it passed through
you; in that moment you swore that you felt it, and against your better
judgment, all you wanted was more.
Nick had given quite the speech about the team, using the
cards you had retrieved from Phil’s locker as the dramatic point maker that you
hoped it would be, but you didn’t know if it had worked. You followed Tony to the holding area,
standing silently as you watched him stare at where the cage had been,
wondering what could be playing out in that genius mind of his.
“Call me Tony.”
“Tony,” you agreed silently, “he was just doing his job.”
“He was an idiot.”
You smiled slightly, not really finding a valid point to
argue that with. “I’m starting to feel
like we all are. How the hell are we
supposed to do this? The team is
scattered, if it’s even a team…” Your
voice faded as Steve entered the room, crossing his arms and leaning against
the bulkhead, watching the two of you from across the room.
“(Y/N), I need to know what’s going on between you and Loki.”
“You and Loki?” Tony asked in total surprise, turning to you
with wide eyes. “What the hell does that
“It doesn’t mean anything,” you replied, holding your hands
up in surrender, “he seems to think he has feelings for me, if he’s even
capable. I think his play is to get
inside my head to help him keep this team apart.”
“Is it working?”
Steve’s tone became deeper as he moved towards you, glancing up at Tony
as he approached. He stood close,
backing you up into the wall with his proximity and his towering height over
you. “I need to know where your
loyalties are, (Y/N).”
Tony responded, putting his hand on the Captain’s chest and
pushing him back slightly, “hey, maybe lay off the kid, huh? If her loyalties were with Loki, why would
she be standing here trying to help? I
think we’ve lost enough people in one day; we don’t need to start pushing more
out.” Tony looked at you with
anticipation, wanting you to back him up.
“Believe me, Captain, I’m on your side. Loki means to start a war, and we are nowhere
near ready. He made this personal when
he took out Coulson.” You pulled
yourself away from the wall, ducking under Steve’s arm, pacing back and forth
as you voiced your inner monologue. “He
hit us all right where we live, why?”
“To tear us apart,” Steve offered.
“Yeah, divide and conquer is great, but he has to take us
out to win,” Tony agreed. “He wants to
beat us; he wants to be seen doing it.”
You continued to pace past the two men, trying to find any
clue that would lead you to Loki, anything that would get you to him so you
could try to convince him to stop. If he
really cared about you like he claimed, then you might be the only hope of
avoiding an all-out war. “Loki’s a
full-tilt diva, right? He wants flowers,
he wants parades, he wants a monument built to the skies with his name
plastered…” your voice faded as your gaze shifted to Tony, both of you immediately
“Son of a bitch.”
“This is why we strap in, Cap,” you groaned, your stomach
flipping and feeling full of knots as Clint tried to land the jet as safely as
possible, still barely maintaining control.
Steve had grabbed onto a roll bar on its roof, struggling to keep his
grip as his body swayed with each movement of the plane. “I swear if you fall and land on me, I’m
throwing up on you, Steve.”
You did your best to keep your mind off of the building
nausea waves with each motion as Clint finally brought the jet to the
ground. Throwing off your harness you
rushed behind Steve from the back of the jet and stood marveling at the war
zone around you. At the limits of your
vision you could see Thor and Loki atop Stark tower, fighting for control. “We need to get back up there!” you shouted
above the commotion.
“Hey sweetheart, let’s not keep your boyfriend waiting!” Tony swooped down and grabbed you around the waist,
hurrying to get you to the roof of his building. He lowered himself just enough to release you
safely, moving quickly to avoid a blast from Loki’s scepter and returning to
the battle below.
“What are you doing here?” Loki asked angrily, reaching down
to grab you and pull you to stand between him and Thor. “You are not meant to be here, (Y/N).”
“Then release her, Loki,” Thor commanded. “Release her now and put an end to this.”
You could feel a low growl and a laughter in Loki’s chest as
he held you to him, beginning to back away towards the tower’s ledge. “Loki, please, you don’t want to do
this. You need to stop it.”
“No, it’s too late,” Loki sneered, pulling the two of you
over the edge and onto a Chitauri speeder passing by. “Hold on tightly, my love. I should not wish to drop you now that I finally
“I won’t be yours as long as this continues, Loki.”
“Do you not see, (Y/N)?
This is now for you as much as it is for me. We will rule together, as I have said all
along.” His attention quickly shifted to
his left, his eyes focused on something in the distance that you couldn’t
see. “Such valiant effort, but so
wasted,” he mumbled, reaching out to grab Hawkeyes arrow from the sky just
before it connected.
You heard the small beep from the arrowhead and clutched
around Loki’s waist tighter, knowing what was about to happen. Seconds later you felt pain throughout your
body as you landed on the roof of the tower, rolling to a stop when you hit the
wall. Natasha landed right behind you,
positioning herself between you and the Asgardian.
“Come on, we need to shut this down!”
“You are all of you beneath me!” You pulled from Nat’s grasp
at the sound of Loki, rushing towards him to see the Hulk holding him back from
getting to you. “I am a god, you dull
creature, and I will not be bullied by-“
You winced watching him be thrashed by Hulk, seeing the
ground smash beneath him with each hit.
Once it stopped and the Hulk left him, you rushed to his side to both
keep him in control and to check on him.
“I told you, there was no way to win,” you said quietly, your eyes
deliberately kept up from him, watching Natasha as she closed the portal once
and for all. “We never would have worked
out, Loki. You don’t listen to me.”
“You were chosen for me centuries ago, my love. Do not give up on me so quickly.”
Your eyes widened as you finally looked at him, seeing a mischievous
grin cross his lips. Before you could
ask him to elaborate, Steve’s hands were around your arms, pulling you up and
into the group, separating you for the last time.
You wanted to know what Loki had meant, but the answer
wouldn’t be coming today, not that he would have been likely to tell you
anyway. He seemed to take a great deal
of pleasure in leaving you with the questions that now consumed you. Watching as Thor led him away in shackles and
muzzled, it felt as if you would never have your answers.
“I can return, if you should need me to, (Y/N),” Thor said
quietly, glancing back to his brother. “If
I learn anything, I will contact you.”
You nodded wordlessly, your eyes still on Loki. You watched as his fingers wrapped around the
casing that held the Tesseract, the thing that brought him to Earth in the
first place, but now you wondered if there was more to it; if he had come for
you as well. Looking around the circle
to each member of the team, you stopped to hold your gaze with him for just a
moment before turning your back to him, holding your breath as you heard him
disappear, not knowing if you would ever see him again.
“Hey, you okay, kid?”
“Never better, Mr. Stark,” you replied with your best
convincing voice, grabbing your gear to head to your car. Your phone buzzed in your pocket so you
stopped briefly, reading the message quickly and trying to hold in your
excitement as he watched you.