[You may remember Thor and Amalia's Adventures from The Wheels on the Bus AKA Thor in Zombie Land (and if you don't, no time like the present!), and you may even remember Amalia making mention of the Aesir Legal Defense in episode V point V. Well, today is your lucky day, because it is time to revisit our friends Thor and Amalia , and it is MORE than time we learned more about the Aesir Legal Defense, charged with making sure Amalia does not end up in jail for Thor's offenses, and taking care of all matters roughly ambassadorial at the Asgardian Embassy. Because it isn't just the Zombies with whom treaties have been signed!]
The trouble with associating with thunder gods is the terrible time they have controlling their tempers. As a result, you are inevitably involved in brawls, being charged with assault, and sitting around hand-cuffed to chairs by the desks of police officers while said thunder god, impossible to mistake for anything but a citizen of Asgard, and granted Diplomatic and Divine Immunity, is released free and clear to go on about his business. Needless to say I've been getting to know the other frequent offenders pretty well, so when one Z. Tringali dropped into the seat next to mine, nursing a bandaged hand and several bruises (as usual), I gave him a friendly nod.
"Satyrs hitting on your girlfriend again?"
"Stupid Satyr treaty never should have been ratified," he grumbled, slouching in his chair. It was just a formality to bring someone in after they punched a Satyr -- no one ever pressed charges for it. Inevitably the Satyr was too drunk to remember and didn’t care, even if he did. Z’d had at least a dozen run ins with them as far as I could tell. "What about you? Waiting for the Aesir Legal Defense to spring you?"
"Yup," I said, glowering as Thor ducked out of the interrogation room. He was too tall and too wide to fit through the doorway without turning just slightly, and when he grinned at me, I didn’t return it. He wasn’t getting off that easily. Not this time.
"Zombies again?" Z asked.
"Vampires,” I sighed. “Apparently he was smelling my hair or something. I didn't even realize the guy wasn't human until Thor knocked out his teeth, and then the other vampires in the bar got involved and it just kind of escalated from there. You know how it goes."
He nodded and flexed his bandaged hand. "Well at least the Aesir have your back, pro-bono. My legal fees are getting ridiculous. Hey!"
He sat up so suddenly the movement caught Thor's eye from across the room, and a growl of thunder rumbled through the police station. Thunder gods are kind of over protective, when they're not the ones getting you into trouble, and even more so when they're feeling guilty for having gotten you into trouble to begin with. Again. And unlike Satyrs, vampires ALWAYS pressed charges. Lucky me.
This was what I got for agreeing to meet a friend of a friend and show them around town without letting the Asgardian Embassy vet them first. But how should I have known said friend might be a vampire? Knowing Mia, I’d figured it would have been some kind of zombie, and I had plenty of practice dealing with them, by now. No sweat.
"Sorry," Z said, sitting back carefully, hands raised in surrender as he eyed Thor warily. The thunder softened to a purr and Thor turned back to the officer with my paperwork. "I forgot how touchy he can be."
"Don't worry about it," I assured him, waving off the semi-regular threat to others of thunder-god-beat-down that came with my daily life. "He's not allowed to start fights in the police station. You were saying?"
"Well,” he cleared his throat. “I was just wondering if you knew how a person could get in.”
“You know, to immigrate? I hear they have good health care. There." He jerked his chin up just slightly, as if to indicate somewhere above.
Technically speaking, Asgard wasn’t “above” anything, but I caught his meaning. Asgardian citizenship. Thor had been pressing me to start the process for myself for years, but I didn’t really want to encourage his tendency to rise to my defense, even if it would have made all these trips downtown go a lot faster. Z wouldn't have that problem at least, and he was a fighter, too. The Aesir loved fighters. But there were other reasons the embassy wasn’t overrun with applicants. The forms were impossible, for starters.
"It depends, really. But since you’re obviously not planning to marry a Valkyrie –”
“How do you know?”
I raised both eyebrows. “Valkyries don’t exactly let anyone throw punches for them. The Satyr would be pulp before you realized he’d said anything offensive to begin with.”
“Oh.” He frowned. “Point taken.”
“Exactly,” I said. “So, can you swing a sword?"
"Sure, why not?"
I tried not to look skeptical. "What about holding your liquor?"
He shrugged. "No problem there."
"There's just one more thing, then," I said.
Bragi had just walked in the door, and Thor hailed him, grinning. One thing you could say for thunder gods, they were never less than enthusiastic to see their family and friends, but Bragi wasn't exactly the Aesir's best lawyer, by any stretch. Sure, he was smooth, well-dressed in his business suit, and even mesmerizing when he spoke. Except he did this thing where everything he said was riddles and rhyming verse and used metaphors that were four steps removed from whatever the point really was, and the officer in charge was already getting that glazed look on his face that meant I was going to be here all night. At least I had company, and Z might as well experience the truth before he got involved.
"Poetry," I told him. "Not this modern stuff either. Skaldic verse or bust."
He laughed. “Yeah, I’m sure.”
Whether he believed me or not, he couldn’t say I didn’t warn him.
(An extra thanks to special guest star Z. Tringali, and special guest Mia-from-whom-all-calamitous-ideas-involving-zombies-originate.)