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Rescue Rewards

So this is my entry for Nalu week prompt 2: Fairytale. I’m actually a lot happier with this one, but I will admit that I didn’t expect it to be this long. I guess I got a bit carried away.

Ah well. 

{I’m in love with a fairy tale, even though it hurts}

—-

            Natsu Dragneel knew what a book was. He knew it a bundle of pages bound together with words pieced together to create a story or to share information. He knew that there were hundreds – no, thousands at least – in all of Fiore. He also knew of both Levy’s and Lucy’s fascination with the things and how when they got together it was a majority of what they’d talk about.

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Acalypha wilkesiana

So this is my entry for the first Nalu prompt. I don’t know how many more days I’ll do, but I definitely have something planned for day 4 (now it’s just a matter of getting it done)

Well anyway, I hope you enjoy!

—————

{When you let your heart be the compass; You won’t get lost, not if you trust it}

—-

            Lucy hummed to herself with a smile on her face and skip to her step as she walked down the spacious street, mostly devoid of life. In such a small town like this one couldn’t expect the streets to be overflowing with people, but the blonde was perfectly content with this. She reached her intended destination within a reasonable time and without incident.

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Korra fic idea

Alright. I’ve had this idea for a korra fic for…quite awhile actually. I only play around with it occasionally but when I first got it I had quite a few ideas to actually take it somewhere. I wrote a basic outline with undetailed plot points and all that jazz.

This story is a sort of AU/crossover thing. I kind of combined Canaan/LOK/Maximum Ride into one story. So if you liked any of those series, this might actually interest you. If you’ve only heard of one of them, here’s the basic summary.

The White Lotus is an organization dedicated the research and enhancement of ordinary people. They alter their DNA and train them to become what they like to call “the perfect soldier”.

Unfortunately for them, they’ve never been able to achieve that with all of their past subjects. Nevertheless, they record all their data and try different combinations of tests, chemicals, and what have you until they achieve their ultimate goal.

In order to keep everything balanced out, they cycle through each element, always taking a test subject from each element. Once that test subject dies a failure, they set out for a new one. For years they’ve been unsuccessful, never being able to create their perfect soldier.

Until they find Korra that is.

A small Southern Water Tribe child who has discovered her water bending abilities at a premature age of 4 years old. They take her in and begin running tests, injecting chemicals and altering her inner nerves and DNA to create “the Avatar”.

Well, this time it actually works. Finally they have created someone who can bend all four elements. They begin to train her in the ways of the elements as well as hand-to-hand combat, wielding weaponry, and shooting guns. (This will most likely be past a time of the 20’s because I want to use more modernized guns.)

Anyway, blah blah blah, stuff happens, Korra thinks her parents are dead, Katara’s in this somewhere, Korra realizes that she has a faint connection to those tested before her stuff like that.

She goes to Republic City and realizes that Amon threatens the White Lotus and her as well. (So there might be some bender vs. non-bender stuff but it’s mainly between the White Lotus/Korra and Amon.)

Anyway, there’s fighting, Korra shoots fucking guns and kicks ass, maybe some romance, suspense, mystery, and a couple of plot twists.

Not convinced yet?

I’ll include the rough and unedited prologue beneath the cut.

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Warmth

technoskittles:

Rating: T
Info: Makorra, angst, violence, blood, death

Just a little something that came to mind out of nowhere. I know I promised I’d write fluff or smut but it seems I can’t escape the angst.

Summary: A near-death experience leads to cuddling in an alley and sharing some much needed warmth.

——————————

Korra winced as she waded through the rubble, taking in the amount of damage done by the recent battle that took place in awe. It was hard to process any of it; she’d been hanging out with her friends, messing and joking around like a normal teenager for the first time in a long time. Their outing was meant to be simple and innocent, but when she was spotted by some non-benders who weren’t too fond of her, things got a little out of hand. One thing led to another and the next thing she was aware of, Equalists were crowding in all directions, backing up the non-benders harassing them. An all-out brawl broke out and everything became chaotic and confusing. Korra vaguely remembers Bolin and Asami fleeing to go find their Satomobile and she was so sure that Mako had gone with them while she distracted the Equalists. Unfortunately, she found him too late when an explosion went off and she heard his scream as a wall of the building over them collapsed on him.

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I’m just gonna casually reblog one of my old fics that isn’t crap woo

Remodel

Rating: T
Pairing: Makorra
Summary: All adventures had to start off somewhere. For instance, remodeling rooms.

—————-

"So I was thinking about redoing the guest room."

Mako paused in stroking his wife’s hair and glanced down. Blue eyes locked into his, waiting for his answer patiently, something he hardly ever saw in the impulsive waterbender. He quirked an eyebrow and pressed his forehead to hers, never breaking eye contact. “Oh really now?”

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Hell of a Dance

Oh hey here’s that chapter story that I wanted to write last year and possibly get published but this was all I ever did for it. This wasn’t even going to be part of the original story but I had to do an English project and this story was all that was on my brain so I just came up with something random.

So here’s an original piece by moi.

Maybe if people actually like this I may continue.

Note: This is the rough draft because my teacher cancelled the project due to personal issues and just gave us all grades based on our rough drafts.

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Stupid

I wrote this after watching episode 4 months ago. I just now found it. Oops.

Rating: T

Pairing: Eh, slight Makorra I guess? Technically he is dating Asami at this point though…

Summary: Let’s say Mako had heard Korra challenge Amon while listening to the radio that morning. He confronts her about it, but things don’t go exactly as planned.

—————-

This had to be the dumbest stunt pulled by the stupidest person in the history of idiocy.

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Secret Bonds

A/N: Alright so the other day this idea kind of just popped in my head and I couldn’t say no to it…

No pairings except some implied Makorra. This is mainly just a Rohan/Korra bonding thing.

Summary: They shared a bond but Korra couldn’t quite place why they shared it or why it was so strong. Finally Rohan gives her the answer.

Soooo. Enjoy I guess?

Rated T for implied sexy time…I guess

Btw, wanna help me out with Korra Nation?

—————

“Rohan really has taken a liking to you, Korra,” Pema remarked,

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Mako drummed his fingers on the tabletop, watching as his girlfriend chatted it up with one of the Lotus sentries (Howl she had called him - what kind of name was that?). A light dinner laid out in front of them, just some white rice and spicy miso soup, but Mako couldn’t help but pout over the fact that it was only meant to be shared with two people. 

Korra laughed loudly before being shushed by Howl, reminded that the rest of the island was asleep. She blushed and covered her mouth, giggling quietly into her hand with Howl chuckling beside her. Mako rolled his eyes and picked at the few grains of rice left in his bowl, wondering how exactly their night turned in this direction.

All he wanted was a quiet dinner with his girlfriend. Just his girlfriend. He purposely kept her out in the city past the usual dinner time that Tenzin had arranged for his family and refused to buy any food while they were out. He wanted a quiet dinner with just the two of them, no airbabies, no strangers in the same restaurant, just him and her. It wasn’t normal for him to go this far to be romantic, but he figured he would for her. After the stress of returning everyone’s bending after they returned and his own absence since joining the police force, they didn’t see each other often. Private times dwindled to nonexistence.

Mako tried to fix that and arrange a night for the two of them, a date night of sorts, but then she invited him.

"He’s been working really hard today, Mako! I’m sure he’s starving! Besides, he helped all of escape that one day and he’s been watching over me practically my whole life, it’s the least I can do for him."

Only she could coax him into giving up their date night for someone who was now stealing all of her attention. He looked up at them again to see Howl yawn and excuse himself to bed, assuring Korra that other sentries were on the alert. She thanked him and wished him a goodnight and smiled as he left. Once Howl was completely gone, she turned to him with wide eyes, almost forgetting his presence. He quirked an eyebrow as if to ask if she had seriously forgotten him and she answered with a shy smile, faint pink blush dusting her dark cheeks.

"Sorry about that. We go way back."

Mako hummed and began collecting his and Howl’s dishes, noticing that Korra had hardly touched her own. The brunette looked down at her dinner, seeming to notice the same thing and awkwardly poking her rice with her chopsticks.

Mako acted indifferent to how she’d tossed him aside for their whole dinner and walked out of the room. “See you tomorrow,” he offered, concluding his sentence with his own yawn. He almost paused when he saw her guilty look and how she gnawed on her lower lip, wanting to go back to her to tell her to stop, maybe kiss her tonight, but he was still sore over being ignored and continued onto the kitchen.

He didn’t even hear her get up and run over to him because he definitely wasn’t prepared for the sudden hug from behind that caused him to nearly drop all the dishes in his hands. He felt her rise to her tiptoes and brush his ear with her breath, unable to suppress the shudder from the sensation.

"Maybe," she whispered, "We could still have our private night together?" Her arms tightened around him and she placed feathered kisses on his neck and shoulder. Mako blinked and shrugged her off so he could turn around and face her.

She had that look.

He returned it with a smirk and leaned down to kiss her lips.

Haircut

Pairing: Makorra

Rating: M for smutty goodness

Summary: The best oral sex ever has some explosive results.

A/N: I saw someone send in a headcanon where Korra would accidentally burn Mako’s hair while he was giving her head. I decided to put that headcanon into story form.

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Ignored

Pairing: KatnissxPeeta

Rating: T-ish

Summary: n/a It’s just a short drabble I wrote after finishing the first book

HEY GUYS GUESS WHAT I SHIP YEP BRING ON THE PAIN I’M USED TO IT

/curls up in a ball and cries

Please excuse this word vomit that really doesn’t make sense and I’m sorry if I damaged your eyes if you read this. It sucks.

——————

Before the Games, before the reaping, before everything, Katniss was never really aware of Peeta’s existence. Besides the bread incident, where he saw her at one of her weakest moments, she’d never even given the baker’s son a second thought. But now, after everything they’ve been through, everything they’ve seen and heard and done, after all of the confusion and the unexpected feelings and sudden emotions, Katniss was now too aware of him.

Their return to District 12 was loud and welcoming; Katniss recalled the cheers everyone gave at welcoming home not just one, but two victors, something that had never occurred in the history of the Hunger Games. She remembered Prim’s deathly tight embrace and the tears rolling down both of their faces. Seeing her sister after such a long time and after so many gruesome experiences reminded Katniss of the last time she’d seen her, of the promise she made. An elated feeling that could’ve lifted her into the sky took over at the realization that she kept her promise and that she was here. She had returned home to Prim and her mother, just as she had said she would.

But once all of the excitement died down, she realized how distant Peeta was being. They hadn’t spoken properly since Haymitch confronted the both of them and Katniss couldn’t stand how much she dreaded Peeta’s absence from her life. She wasn’t supposed to feel this way; it was all an act to ensure their survival. She hadn’t noticed him before, so it should’ve been easy to let him go and ignore his existence now. To go back to how things were before. (Which was a silly notion considering everything she’s been through and everything she’s seen that really opened her eyes to what cruelties humans were capable of.) But it wasn’t and Katniss hated this fact with such a burning passion and hated these feelings that he brought out of her that no one had managed before.

Hopes that Gale would makes her forget were crushed to a pulp when he began to get distant from her as well and Katniss couldn’t help think that he was angry for the same reason that Peeta was: she had fooled them both. With Peeta she had acted out the whole thing and pretended to be in love for the entertainment of the Capitol and for the survival of them both. With Gale, she possibly led him on into believing he had some future with her, which he should’ve never had in the first place and should’ve definitely abandoned the minute she stepped in Prim’s place (no before that).

She just couldn’t seem to please anyone. She was too unstable and, ironically, distant. Plans for marriage and a family were things she typically avoided, but now she couldn’t help but imagine a simple future with a companion for life. Children was still something she was adamant on not having for the sake of never putting them in the position she once was in and never forcing them to experience what she had to. But maybe marriage wouldn’t be awful.

But of course, now she was on the opposite end of this “love” thing.

She was always aware of the boy with the bread, but he never seemed to acknowledge her anymore.

Just great.

I spoil you guys but…here’s another snippet from my Makorra fic

Prompt given to me by poisonousstrawberries (forever ago it seems) and I got a lot of writing done today (and I’m still going!) but I thought I’d spoil you guys a bit more and let you read some more.

Notes: This takes place after the last snippet. Also, this is all unedited I literally just wrote this part not even 2 minutes ago.

———

            Mako saw her again the next day during his break between classes. He was sitting on a bench, glaring at the foreign text in his mythology textbook, trying his best to memorize all he could to prepare for the quiz. After his fiasco with Bolin last night, he deemed himself too exhausted to do much else and conked out on the couch. In the morning he woke with a sore neck, a bitter memory of his altercation with his little brother who did nothing but innocently ask a question, and the realization that he had an important quiz he didn’t study for at all that afternoon.

            Mako groaned and ran his hand through his hair in frustration, gripping the spiked locks, ready to yank them from his scalp. How in the hell did he survive the first year of college with a sane head?

            “Hey, City Boy!”

            He looked up to see her jogging towards him from across the vast field set in the middle of campus, “the mall” people called it. She waved and sped up when he half-heartedly waved back, still worrying in the back of his mind that he only had eleven minutes to cram all of this into his head before heading off to class. It may have only been one quiz, but he was sure with how badly he was doing in the class it would heavily affect him in the long run.

            Korra plopped down beside him, playfully nudging him with her elbow. “Whatcha got there?” With no regards to his personal space, she leaned over and put her chin on his shoulder, peering down at the textbook. “Oh mythology.” She stuck her tongue and scrunched up her nose. “Been there, done that. Not going there again.”

            He dryly chuckled. “You didn’t get it either?”

            Korra shook her head and reached into her backpack. “Nah I understood it just fine. But my teachers down in the South Pole made it the most boring experience ever!” She pulled out a bag of candy, a closer look told Mako that they were fire gummies. She popped one in her mouth and off-handedly offered him the bag, shaking it when he just sat there. “Well take one, dummy.”

            Mako shook his head. “I don’t have time to be eating snacks. I have a quiz to study for.”

            She groaned and he looked over to see her staring at him with a disgusted face. “Oh god you’re a nerd, aren’t you? You hot guys are good at hiding that kind of crap!”

            Mako stumbled over her “hot guy” comment – but noticed the way his heart skipped and the tips of his ears heated up – and managed a scowl, snapping the book shut. It was useless anyway, he was going to fail and end up dropping out of the class anyway. “If I were really a nerd I’d be passing the class!”

            “It’s really not a hard subject.”

            Somewhere in the back of his mind Mako noted that if these were her feelings towards mythology she would’ve made an excellent tutor but the blinding anger took over and he felt a vein bulge in his forehead. It was upsetting that some girl who had just moved here months ago and barged into his life unexpectedly and without invitation could just come trampling even further into his personal life and going as far as to ridicule him on his stupidity. Okay, so maybe she wasn’t doing all of that intentionally but with all of this stress that had been piling on his plate and after what had happened last night he found that he was easily ticked off at just about anything at the moment.

            “Well if you’re so smart why are you attending college in the first place? Why don’t you just demand your diploma now and go off and be some successful billionaire or something?”

            Korra blinked at his outburst and ate another fire gummy, hardly changing her expression. It took him a moment to calm down enough that she was unfazed by his explosion as she sat and chewed leisurely on her snack, even daring to dump a few more in her mouth and chewing them all while looking at him with this look that made him shrink within himself and feel shamed like a child who threw a temper tantrum and still didn’t get what they wanted.

            “Well now that that’s out of the way,” she began, tucking the rest of the fire gummies back in her bag. “It’s obvious you’re stressed-“

            “Pfft. You don’t know the half of it,” he interrupted.

            “But,” she continued, giving him a pointed look that made him shut his mouth. Dammit how was she so good at these non-verbal warnings that actually got him to obey her? That wouldn’t be good for him in the future. “I’ve got the solution.”

            He was almost afraid to ask, remembering her many stories from last night but… “And that would be?”

            She grinned.

            His stomach dropped.

            “Let’s skip.”

"Maybe you should take a break."

Korra huffed in frustration and shook her head, going through another motion for the umpteenth time that night, frowning when she didn’t receive any results. “If I take a break then I’ll never get it.”

"And if you don’t take a break you’ll wear yourself out," Mako argued. She ignored him and repeated the airbending motion, still coming up with nothing. He sighed and put his chin in his propped up hand, watching her without much interest. The sun was setting in the distance the night was growing cold, yet she insisted on training out here until she successfully completed one airbending move.

Considering her past luck with airbending, Mako figured they’d be out there all night.

Maybe longer.

A chilled breeze blew past the two of them, chilling Mako underneath his light jacket. He shivered and pulled his scarf tighter around his neck. Heat coursed through his veins as he concentrated on staying warm, his inner-fire coming in handy.

Korra scowled as the wind played with her hair. “Oh just mock me why don’t you?” she shouted into the sky. 

Mako stared at her as he adjusted his scarf so it wasn’t cutting off his air. “You realize you’re yelling into the air which can’t answer you.”

She rounded on him, heated glare burning into his very skin and bones. “I don’t want to hear you right now.”

He didn’t answer as she turned back around, taking a deep breath and getting into the stance once again. He sat and watched as she concentrated on her flowing energy and moved gracefully and with light feet as she went through the movements carefully. She looked enough like an expert at this but had yet to show any results for her efforts.

She whipped around with outstretched arms towards him and splayed out fingers to conclude the bending move and Mako felt more wind grace his cheekbones and ruff up his hair.

It wasn’t the wind this time.

Korra stood stunned for a split second before she retracted her hands and pushed them out again, bending more wind into Mako’s face. He reached up to fix his hair as Korra began to slowly grin and look at her hands like they had suddenly turned to gold.

"Mako!" she laughed. "Mako I can airbend!" She laughed again and pumped her fist in the air before running over to him. "You saw it right? I just totally airbended!”

Mako nodded and smiled for her sake. “Yes I saw it, Korra. It was-mmph!”

He guessed that she got a little caught up in her excitement because her lips were now pressed to his and he could just feel her bright smile on his lips. She kissed him fiercely, hands clutching to the back of his neck and pulling at his hair. 

Tentatively, Mako placed his hands lightly on her arms and kissed her back.

He kind of wished he had known her when she learned the other three elements. Because the celebrations that followed…

Well, they definitely left him winded.

—————-

((Not only do I get this out really late but then I end it on a really bad joke. xD Ah well. Hope you enjoyed it anon who’s probably already forgotten about this prompt.))

Makorra Prompt WIP

Because obviously this is going to take forever for me to finish so I’m going to go ahead and give you all a snippet of a oneshot I’m working on.

The prompt is "Her eyes were the ocean and he was in deep water" given to me by poisonousstrawberries

P.S. I have way more written than this but so far I really enjoy this snippet so I’ll let you see this. 

P.P.S. This is not the beginning

——————

A month passed before he saw her again. It was a bit odd how easily she was avoiding him now, because there was no way that they weren’t able to run into each other. Right? She must’ve been avoiding him, creeping around campus like a ninja, hiding in the shadows. Or something.

One day however, he was approaching the campus limits and planning to head to Bolin’s favorite restaurant to pick up some to-go food when he noticed her leaning against the brick wall, cowering under the shade of a tree from the sun. Her backpack sat next to her and she was chewing on something (upon closer inspection Mako saw it was a piece of hay), a closed book resting on her extended lap. Her hands propped her head from the wall and she gazed upwards towards the browning leaves, watching them descend to earth. A look of irritation crossed her face every so often.

Without giving it another thought, he made his way over to her. Before he even fully acknowledged what he was doing, he was already standing over her looking down with a smile. Her eyes turned to his and his breath was lost when he saw the glow of blue irises dancing in the partial sunlight.

“Looks like City Boy isn’t too cool for little ole’ me anymore,” she said. She shifted the piece of hay with her tongue, moving it to the other side. “What brings you here, Cool Guy?”

Mako ignored the nicknames she sarcastically shot at him and sat down next to her, glancing at her textbook. “You’re taking Advanced World History?”

She shrugged and continued looking at the leaves above them. “Eh. Tenzin thought it’d be a great idea and I gave in. I don’t really know what I’m going to major in just yet so I’m kind of experimenting.” She chewed thoughtfully on the hay. “So why are you taking it?”

Mako sputtered and struggled to collect his thoughts. “How did you know I’m taking that?”

“I’m in your class. ‘Course, I sit in the way back so I don’t exactly blame you for never noticing me.” She finally turned to face him and Mako almost couldn’t handle the close proximity. Were they really sitting this close before? Why hadn’t he noticed? Surely he would’ve noticed. “In fact we share about five classes together.”

“Five?”

“Yep.” She spit the hay out on the ground and stuffed her textbook into her bag, zipping it up and hopping up from the ground. “World History, Calculus II, Advanced Physics, and two others that I prefer to fall asleep in rather than learn.” She offered him a two-fingered salute. “See ya around, City Boy.” She swiveled on her heel and walked away, brown ponytail bouncing with each step.

“Wait!”

Her walk slowed to a stop and she paused before turning around. “What?”

Mako hurriedly stood and picked up his backpack. He jogged over to her while she waited with a curious expression, eyebrow quirked, blue eyes shining. He offered her a smile – they were practically off campus anyway, kindness was safe.

 “I’m ordering some take out for my brother. Want to have dinner with us?”

She blinked in surprise and actually took a step back from him. He watched her shock-filled face and began to process what he had just asked her, a light blush heating the tips of his ears. Oh great now not only was she going to think he was some bipolar jerk but she was also going to think he was some creep who had no shame in inviting girls to his apartment. Then he was going to have to avoid her for all eternity if she didn’t find a way to get his ass arrested by complaining to Tenzin. This was seriously not one of his brightest ideas and the impulsive thinking needed to stop.

All worries flew out the window and were replaced with immense relief when she smiled and playfully punched him in the arm. “Alright. What’s for dinner?”

Strength

Pairing: Slight Makorra 

Rating: T-ish

Just something I decided to write at 5 AM 

——————-

Mako wrapped the bandage around Korra’s bloodied knuckles, holding her hand gingerly in his as he wound the fabric around, watching the red liquid soak into the white, staining it. The two were silent, not able to dig for any energy to neither speak nor find a care to talk with one another. Moments like these were best for keeping quiet and allowing the other to their thoughts without interruption or intrusion. So Korra sat and allowed him to fix her hand, scrutinizing his pale face in the low light, imagining what was going on in his head. None of it could be good.

"I should be comforting you," she eventually croaked, throat sore from screaming and sobbing. Mako remained silent, not even bothering to look up from her hand.

"I don’t understand why you’re helping me."

Mako finished wrapping the bandage and dropped it into her lap. Korra raised it and inspected his handiwork, stroking the soft cloth with the pad of her thumb. It still stung, but it was a pain she could ignore easily.

"You must hate me," she muttered, dropping her hand to her lap and staring at it as tears gathered in her eyes. "I wouldn’t blame you if you did." When she looked up she saw molten amber eyes and flinched. The first tear slipped and sped down her cheek and her throat closed up as she attempted fighting off her crying fit. "Of course you do. I see the anger in your eyes."

He didn’t answer. He didn’t move.

He didn’t really do anything.

"You blame me for all of this." He stared at her. "Don’t worry. I blame myself too." No movement. "I should’ve been there for her, for the both of you." No answer. "You can go ahead and dump me like the useless trash I am."

"And why would I ever do that?"

Korra blinked back tears. “Why not?”

"Korra, I lo-"

Don’t…say it.” Her voice was firm but her bottom lip quivered dangerously. Another tear slipped past and dripped down her chin. Korra felt her hands shaking in her lap and her chest constricted around her lungs and heart, squeezing until she couldn’t breathe. Her vision blurred and her heart raced. Small, choked whimpers escaped her throat even when she tried to shove them down and keep herself silent. Mako watched with a distraught fixation, torn between leaving her alone or scooping her into his arms and holding her close.

"I don’t deserve such…such kind words," she sobbed, fisting her pants in her hands. Her shoulders shook and the tears increased, but now none of it seemed to matter. She’d been holding this in far too long and it was time to let it all out. She shouldn’t have to hide her emotions, even in front of the very person she just hurt.

"Korra-"

"This is all my fault."

"No Korra it’s not. Stop it. Just stop."

She snapped her head up and furrowed her eyebrows together, wiping away a few tears falling down. “How is this not my fault, Mako? I should’ve been there!” She took a deep breath. “She’s dead because of me. And you have every right to hate me for it.”

Korra ducked her head again in shame and sadness. She had let the one person Mako cared about most besides Bolin slip from life so easily. It was her duty to protect those in need and she wasn’t doing that great a job so far by her count. All that happened to Asami…she was to blame.

Mako reached out for her and wrapped his arms around her shaking shoulders. “I don’t hate you, Korra. And I don’t blame you either. Asami’s death hurts, but I understand that you couldn’t be there for her.” Tears began to soak into his jacket and he smoothed her hair as she cried into him, mourning the loss of her dear friend and a strong ally.

"Don’t let this get to you, Korra. I know you’re stronger than that. Asami knows you’re stronger than that.”

Korra sniffed and looked up at him, searching his eyes for a lie. “And if I’m not?”

He kissed her forehead and brushed a strand of hair from her face. “Then I’m here for you. And she will be too. We’ll help you be strong.”