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Origin

Leah and Loki

Loyal handmaiden and servant to Hela, Leah is an Asgardian and denizen of Hel. She can be relied on to be a sounding board, and advisor to Hela. When the all father Odin's brother the Serpent Cul returns from millennia long exiles and launches a global wide terror campaign by making lieutenants out of powerful Earth heroes, it is Leah that seems to advise Hela to consider the offer by the Serpent. That it might be better to ally under him in a subservient role, as Hela and Hel owe no allegiance to Odin and the Asgardians. That Asgard and Odin owes Hela a debt they will never pay. Leah is also quick to alert her master Hela, when Loki informs her of possible war between Hela's forces and Mephisto's forces, and the involvement of the Disir. In one incident Loki would try and endear himself to Hela with sweet words of compliments before Leah would play along before attacking the trickster god's groins. Yet that moment would start the machinations of an eventual friendship between the two, both noting how their names are interesting in the context of their constant companions Ikol and Hela.

Loki would also manipulate Leah by getting her to get word to Leah that Mephisto has the Disir after manipulating Mephisto into confronting Hela over a possible alliance with Cul, whilst he and Tyr killed the Serpents servant. After the defeat of the Serpent at the hands of Thor, Hela decides to relocate Leah to Earth, Broxton, Oklahoma, where Asgard is current located. This seems to bother Leah, but she does as she is ordered. Leah is to live in a cave nearby. She and Loki have a loose form of friendship, that can be complicated at times. Leah is foreign to many of Earths ways, so is on a learning curve for human habits and stylings. Leah would also be a founding member of the short lived Magic Secret Action Squad alongside Loki, Tyr, the Destroyer and the Disir. Leah is especially fond of milkshakes.

Creation

Leah is a Marvel Comics character created by writer Kieron Gillen and artist Dougie Braithwaite appearing for the first time in Journey into Mystery issue 624 (2011). Leah is an anagram for Hela. Leah will also occasionally act as the narrator for the issue recap page.

Character Evolution

Introduced as a part of the Fear Itself series Journey Into Mystery tie in issues, Leah was introduced in a small and humble role as Hela's hand maiden and assistant. However her writer Kieron Gillen would have much more planned for the character and rather than stay as a minor one off character, Leah quickly developed into one of the main supporting characters of Journey. With a much younger reincarnated Loki as the protagonist of the series, Leah who was of a similar age and stature would become very important to his development as well, with Leah serving as not only a potential romantic interesting but a character to clash with at times. Leah would also have her own story as she would be transported from her familiar location of Hel to Earth and experience the idiosyncrasies of humans first hand.

Seemingly an aged version of Leah eventually finds herself in the Young Avengers book, also written by her creator Kieron Gillen. Describing what she is up to Kieron notes "Leah is the therapist, and she’s up to something. She’s definitely been pro-splitting Teddy and Billy. I mentioned that he had a therapist two issues ago so she’s been involved with Teddy for some time. Oh, and of course, Loki. To what level Loki is a villain is up to you. That’s what the next issues is about. Leah talks about a group; a group of people who have been similarly hurt by the super hero lifestyle. I imagine we’ll be meeting them quite soon."

Major Story Arcs

Fear Itself

When the Tongue of the Serpent arrives in Hela's domain of Hell, to discuss which side of the upcoming war Hela stands, it is Leah who announces him and stands at the right hand of her mistress Hela. After the Tongue has been shown to his quarters, Hela seeks counsel with Leah and Tyr about which side they should take Asgard's or The Serpent. Tyr is for Asgard while Leah feels that they owe the Aesir nothing. Hela seems to side with Hela and dismisses Tyr.

Later unknown to Hela, Loki has made a deal with both Tyr and Mephisto, so when Loki shows up screaming about Mephisto's betrayal Hela leaves to confront him and leaves Leah in charge of Loki. Leah later reads Loki's mind and learns that Mephisto has the Disir under his control and spirits away to warn Hela. That is how she came to be present when Loki arrives with "Direst News" that the Serpent planned on taking the underworld no matter what Hela or Mephisto did. Mephisto, Hela and Loki make a deal, and Leah's assissance is part of it. Leah must help Loki stop the Serpent and along with Tyr and 4 of the Disir obey his every command.

Magic Secret Action Squad

Once Loki returns from Limbo with the Sword Twilight's shadow and the Destroyer, Leah uses her magic to help Loki's Magic Secret Action Squad, a team name she hates. She sneaks them into the Serpent's Dark Asgard and helps Loki locate the book that has the Serpent's history. There Loki uses Twilight's Shadow, which it turns out is a pen, to change the Serpent's history by adding Leah as a girl from his past who tended to his wounds, and a girl that gives him a bit of goodness.

Then while Loki runs off to do his own mischief Leah opens a portal to get Loki's Magic Secret Squad out of the Dark Asgard before Surtur destroys it. Leah is the last one trough the portal, after pushing Tyr through saving his life. Back in Midgar Leah is present to witness Thor fall from the sky after battleing and defeating the Serpent.

Aftermath

Leah versus Hellstorm, Son of Satan

Leah is ordered by Hela to remain at Loki's side for the duration and help him in his quests. This much to the dislike of Leah herself. Loki takes her to a milkshake bar in Broxton, where she gets to experience milkshakes for the first time. When the Son of Satan heads to Broxton to find the cause of several dream related possessions and deaths, Leah initially aids in protecting Loki from the powerful mystic, but after the individuals realize they are fighting on the same side, Leah ends up assisting both Loki and Son of Satan in trying to stop the powerful Nightmare from becoming the King of the Fear Lords.

Loki and Leah are then sent off to help the magical realms of Britain in a battle against some new magical creatures that get their power from modern machines. At one point, Loki makes a deal with Hela, and at the end of the adventure, Hela collects. It turns out that Leah is actually the personification of Hela's missing hand, which was cut off by the Disir some time before. Leah is merged with Hela, and disappears. Loki is greatly saddened at this, for Leah was his one and only BFF.

Everything Burns

However, a mysterious female figure is later seen working with Surtur. Surtur is using the same British gods of modernity that Loki helped earlier as his pawns. He plans to use their fire and connection to Otherworld to destroy everything. This woman, who turns out to be a resurrected Leah, is helping him. She confronts Loki, telling him that she is the version of Leah that he wrote into the Serpent's story, and because he did such a poor job writing her, she is forever a one-dimensional character, unable to evolve. She tries to kill him, but after a variety of tricks, Loki is determined to help her, and ends up going back in time to write more of her story into the history book, fleshing out her character with all the details he has come to know and appreciate about her. When he comes back, she is able to be her own person, and feels more like his old BFF once again. In order to protect her from the evil that may be coming, Loki has Hela send Leah far back in time. Leah wishes Loki had never given her a heart because now she will hate him forever. Hela states when she grows up Leah will have the power to deal with him. Hela also mentions that Loki is not Hela's father, but the word made flesh. Both hinting that Leah actually grows up to be Hela.

The University of Multiple Lives

Older Leah as Teddy's therapist

The Young Avengers including Loki, are passing through multiple alternate realities and dimensions trying to escape and battle against the Mother parasite. They come across a particularly barren reality where Loki is shocked to find Leah. Leah spooks Loki and confuses his team mates as to who Leah was and what was going on. Miss America and Kate Bishop tell her they could save her somehow, but Leah dismisses their best efforts and departs. An aged Leah contacts the Mother parasite as well as manipulates Hulkling, Teddy Altman, into getting away from Wiccan, working as Teddy's therapist.

Powers and Abilities

The extent of Leah's powers are unknown, however she has proven herself a capable magic user and has even been able to temporary fend off powerful opponents such as Daimon Hellstorm with protective castings. She appears to function well without food, water or protection from weather extremities. Leah does not require sleep.

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