attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #68, Revisit.

Summary: It feels too small around her, like her little girl's clothes.

Ice Cold Change

Her braid just felt right hanging from the back of her head.  Her parka felt the way clothing was supposed to feel.  The air on her face, the bight of the wind, the shining white ice all around her, all of it whispered home to her.

Katara stood in the middle of the village, in the middle of the tents and undersized huts, the tiny circle of home, run down, small and too tight around her.

Aang, she knew, could never go home.  Toph she knew, wouldn't go home.  She wondered if Zuko felt this way back in the Fire Nation, or if being Firelord was big enough for him.  She wondered if Sokka and Suki felt this way, on little Kyoshi Island, surrounded by people who had never left home.

But so many people here had left home.  The South Pole was full of people who had seen the world. 

It used to be that this was the world, it used to be that when her father left, he left her world completely.  It used to be that the empty space around them felt so big.

She ran to Gran-Gran's tent.  "Master Pakku, can you get your students together?"

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
Alright, I'm unwilling to let [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 go without a fight, so I am going to incentivize participation.  Write and post a fic for Round 65 - Air, and I'll fill a drabble request of yours.  Comment on all of the fics in the round (everybody said they wanted more comments), and at the end of the round, link me to all of the comments and I'll fill a request for you.  Do both, and I will fulfill three requests for commentfic.

The rules for posting to [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 can be found here.

You don't have to belong to [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 or have ever participated in it before to earn a request for commenting, and if you do want to join to post a fic for the round, all you have to do is click the "join the community" button, and you're in, easy.

About which I will not write (so don't request):

Ty Zula
NC-17
Incest
Ships where one party is much older or younger than the other(s)
Rape
Other people's OCs

Other than that, everything is fair game.

The deadline to post fic is Saturday December 1st at 11:00 PM EST.  The deadline to post comments is  Saturday December 8th at 11:00 PM EST.

Fics in The Round So Far:

Marking Boundaries by [livejournal.com profile] attackfish
The Need to be Seen by [livejournal.com profile] lalunatique
Playtime at Air Temple Island by [livejournal.com profile] wolfs_lament 
What Are the Odds? by [livejournal.com profile] c3childs
Wrong by [livejournal.com profile] chordatesrock
Four Element - Air- Third Stanza by[livejournal.com profile] clockwerkchaos
How Tenzin Met Pema by [livejournal.com profile] lavanyasix


Fills:

For[livejournal.com profile] wolfs_lament:
   For a story: Hufflepuff Zuko, Secret Tunnel

For [livejournal.com profile] chordatesrock:
   For a story: Holding This Breath: the Aftermath of Kidnapping Aang
   For commenting on everyone's fics: Quiet Shadowed Places: the Cooler
   Bonus: Zuko/Toph, all grown up and surviving state dinners

For [livejournal.com profile] lalunatique:
   For commenting on everyone's fics: Ty Lee and Suki - Sake

For [livejournal.com profile] somariel:
   For commenting on everyone's fics: The Grand Lotus puts out a call

For: [livejournal.com profile] c3childs:
   For a story: Hama - Katara wasn't her first pupil  *Warning for violence and death*
   For commenting on everyone's fics: Amon - the vigilante of Republic City
   Bonus:  Yakone - he owns Republic City

For [livejournal.com profile] lavanyasix:
   For a story: Lin Realizes Toph is a dirty cop
   For commenting on everyone's fics: Pre-series - Korra encounters prejudice due to being half Northern and half Southern
   Bonus:  Ozai marries his son off into an insultingly low-ranked colonial noble family. Zuko/Kori


attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)

So I am not the only one who thinks it's time for a fandom auction! [livejournal.com profile] fandomaid is running a fandom charity auction to benefit the victims of Hurricane Sandy in North America and the Caribbean, and I will be offering fic, and I encourage everybody who writes fic to do the same. Also, everyone who has any money on hand, please bid!


For more information, links to the different auctions, and directions on how to offer an item or make a bid, please click this link.


I'm offering a 2000 word fanfic in Avatar: the Last Airbender/Legend of Korra, Harry Potter, or White Collar fandoms, starting bid $15.00 AUD.





attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #65, Air.

Summary: She feels it around her when she walks in its emptiness.

Marking Boundaries

Toph remembered when she was very young, before she met the badger-moles or became the Blind Bandit, sitting in her window and listening to the wind blow through the trees.  She remembered hanging her feet out the window, with the ground only a few feet below her, and feeling like it was miles below instead.  She remembered the way she used to crawl, or cling to walls when she thought her mother wouldn't catch her, and she remembered feeling like nothing in the world existed except the ground underneath her feet. 

Once, after a party, where a bunch of her father's friends had all sat around and talked about the way the moon looked reflected in a pond, someone told her it was a shame she was never going to see the sky.

Aang and Katara told her that when they were on Appa, they were flying through the sky.  Aang talked about being in the temples, high up in the mountains that touched the sky, but Toph had been in the temples.  They didn't feel any different.  They all talked about the sky and how far away it was, and only Toph remembered that they all touched it, always.
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] floranna for the prompt: "Zuko does something to prove he is not Bellatrix and Voldemort's kid, but his own good person. To someone who doubted him before."


Chip on his Shoulder

"You're not a teacher."  Zuko looked down his nose at Professor Smith.  "You're a bully."

"Detention, Lestrange," the professor said boredly.  "Move along.  You don't want me to take any points.  Your house doesn't like you much as it is."

Zuko's fists clenched, but he left his wand in his pocket.  "He's going home on the train tomorrow already.  You don't have to scare him like that."  He glanced down at the eight-year-old stowaway, glaring back and forth between Professor Smith and Zuko himself.  "He's gonna have to come back in a couple of years."

"And that's why he needs to learn now that you don't play with Hogwarts."  Professor Smith glanced down at the kid, who was looking at Zuko like he was the dangerous one.

"You're Zuko Lestrange?" the kid spat.

"Yeah," Zuko unclenched his hands and tried to smooth the front of his robe, nervously.

"My brother told me about you," the kid, Sensu's brother, growled like it was supposed to be a challenge.  "I don't want any help from You-Know-Who's kid."

"If you're so worried about the kid, you can take him back to the Headmistress, Lestrange."  Professor Smith gave him a cruel smirk.  "Have fun."
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Disclaimer: I don't own Avatar: the Last Airbender. I don't own Twilight. I don't own NCIS. I don't own Star Wars. I don't own Harry Potter. I did however, have to go to high school, and that's as close to ownership I come to anything in this fic.

Summary: There are so many ways for it to blow up in their faces, but that's what makes it fun.

Author's Note: Written for [personal profile] mihnn in the [livejournal.com profile] orderofthelotus fic exchange. Also, I would like to take this chance to thank [livejournal.com profile] lavanyasix and [livejournal.com profile] floranna for betaing this. (Thank you!)



Five Worlds in which Sokka Never Did Manage to Propose to Suki, and One in which He Didn't Have To )



Some of the vignettes in this fic take place in universes I have already written for.

NCIS:
Fire and Brimstone

Star Wars:

Another Wacky Day for Sokka3PO and KataraD2


Harry Potter (Hufflepuff Zuko):
Zuko's a Hufflepuff
Over the Summer
Zuko and Azula's father is revealed
Failko

High School:
Toph and Aang
Sleepover
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #64, Green.

Summary: Uniforms are symbols which hold meanings.  When she puts it on, those meanings change, and change her.

Into Ashes

The first time Ty Lee put on that uniform, it meant nothing.  It was beyond nothing, a trap for someone else.  It was one more lie she was telling on Azula's behalf, and one more example of how far she had learned to go to satisfy Azula.

The second time Ty Lee put on that uniform, she felt it sink into her, into her skin, into her bones into her being, into everything except her blood.  It wasn't a lie, and the paint on her face didn't have to be a mask.  She had taught the Kyoshi Warriors the skills she had once used to defeat them and lock hem away, and they had forgiven her.  They were letting her come with them, giving her a place to settle down, making her a part of them.

The second time Ty Lee put on that uniform, she was going to live earth.  If she married, she would probably marry earth.  Her children would be earth.  She wore green, and held fans that would be wielded for the sake of Earth Kingdom citizens.  Inside, she felt the future trying to choke off the fire, to smother it, to drown it, and she had no idea if it was enough, if any of it was enough to make up for the part of her that had fought earth, and stood at Azula's side, or if it was just covering that part of her up, and this was just the biggest lie of all.
attackfish: Neal & Peter text "We may someday attain a reltationship of mutual respect/ First I will see the gods walking the earth" (Peter and Neal MWT quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] elrhiarhodan's Promptfest VII (f-locked)

Summary: Because Zuko hunted the Avatar for three years, and Peter hunted Neal for three years. See? Meant to be. What do you mean that's just a coincidence? Crazy talk!


The White Collar/Avatar: the Last Airbender Fusion That Was Always Meant to Be

"It's about honor."

"What?"  Neal's forehead wrinkled, and his mouth hung a little bit open with bemusement.

"Honor," Peter tried again.  "You need to stop stealing things and going around lying to people, because you need people to think you're honorable, so they can trust you."

"I've never really had a problem getting people to trust me."  Neal leaned back against the pillar, and gazed out over the edge of the Western Air Temple and into the mists beyond, mirroring Peter.

"You're the Avatar.  Word's going to get around."

Neal heaved a sigh and stood up.  "Don't we have firebending to practice?"

"Later."  Peter didn't move.  "This is important.  You're going to be ending the war, remaking the world.  People have to be able to trust you."

"Wow," Neal said.  "Diana's right, you really do suck all the fun out of everything.  I mean, I thought she was bad, with the waking me up at the crack of dawn for earthbending practice, but no, you're the worst."

"I am not!" Peter yelped, startled.

"Are too..." Neal singsonged, pressing his advantage.

"I'm not."

Neal grinned and started walking away, back towards the temple and his friends.  "Just keep telling yourself that."
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #63, Between.

Summary: Her shoulders aren't ready for the weight of the world.

Flaw in the System

She ran through the grass, her glider opening to take in the wind.  It pulled upward, stretching her arms above her head, and lifting her up off the ground.  The woman who had been watching her out of sight through a window above turned away and ducked behind a wall.  "We can't keep letting her get out like this."

"Yangchen is a spirited child.  The closer we hem her in, the more she will try to escape."
 
"You think I don't know that, Amala?"  She rubbed her temple with one hand.  "But I'm trying to keep her alive.  If we could just tell her what she is-"

Amala's lips turned up wryly.  "You think she would understand?"

The child playing below dove towards the ground and pulled up sharply, just before impact, giggling wildly as the grass skimmed her toes, stomach, and nose as she glided.  The other nun shook her head as if she were trying to shake a way an insect that had flown into her face.  "There should be a better way.  The Avatar before her is dead.  She is what we're left with.  It will be years until she is any use, and the whole world knows it."

"So for a few short decades, we are called upon to keep the peace ourselves."  Amala didn't blink.  "How dreadful."

Nam Kha sighed and saw in her mind's eye, the changing map, as a thousand small wars in the Earth Kingdom, Water Tribes, and Fire Nation let city-states swallow their neighbors whole, in the name of unity, and in the absence of anyone to stop them.  "If every tinpot tyrant and petty warlord weren't just waiting-"

There was a loud thud outside the window, as the girl managed to collide with a small rise in the grass.  "Ow..."
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
Ganked from everybody by now...

Comment to this post and I will (to the best of my ability):

1. Tell you why I friended you. If I remember.
2. Associate you with something.
3. Tell you something I like about you.
4. Tell you a memory I have of you.
5. Associate you with a character/pairing.
6. Ask something I've always wanted to know about you.
7. Tell you my favorite userpic of yours.
8. Tell you that you must post this in your own journal---- GO!!!!


Also, I made a new Avatar: the Last Airbender icon! (take if you want, but give credit and tell me you took it)



No Ship War in Ba Sing Se
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #61, Speech.

Summary: The Dai Li ruled with silence. Shangyin has a voice.


Voice

Shangyin struggled uselessly against the Dai Li hustling her down the tunnel. "If you just tell me what we did wrong, I promise, we'll never do it again!" she gasped, panic seeping into her body like water through the cracks in the tunnel ceiling. "I swear, we didn't know..."

Tears ran down her face as they strapped her into the chair and set the lanterns spinning. She screamed to block out the agents' voices.

The gag came down over her mouth to choke away the sound. "Your name is Joo Dee, and you are honored to serve our wonderful city."

~*~

It was so strange tha they all were named Joo Dee just like she was. She didn't remember having ever met another one before coming to work here. Of course, Joo Dee's memories from before were a little hazy. Everything paled in comparison to the honor of serving their wonderful city.

Joo Dee lay down on her mattress in the dormitory and watched the other Joo Dees flit by, wishing she had something to call them each, but it didn't matter. It didn't seem like there was much to distinguish them.

Still, it would have been nice to make friends.

~*~

Eight years later, Shangyin walked the tunnels under Lake Laogai and opened the door to the Joo Dee dormitory, forgotten and ignored in the end of the war. The women who blinked back at her, empty eyed and smiling, saw her stolen Dai Li uniform and her stolen Dai Li posture. "Lian," she read from her list, her long, long, list of women for her to return their names and their voices to, one by one.

One woman's head shook at the name, and Shangyin pointed at her. "Joo Dee, come with me."

The woman, unfed, unwashed, and dehydrated, followed.



Author's Note: The story of how Shangyin reclaims her own name and memories can be found in a longfic titled Xenolith, which will be posted after I have finished it.
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
I have a craving I just can't deny.  I want the angstiest whumpiest captivity and slavery fic you can link me to in this fandom

Some rules:

No "Zuko holds such and such character captive and they fall in looove!"  No.  If the captive falls in love with the captor, it better be seriously screwed up.

Gen is best

I love angst

Absolutely no Ty Zula under any circumstances
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #59, Escape.

Summary: He's betraying his entire culture.  She doesn't know what she's doing.

The Rising New Moon

Yue touched the betrothal necklace hanging from her throat.  "I don't know how to thank you."

The old waterbending master scowled in the darkness.  "For starters, you can give me back that necklace."

She pulled off her mitten.  Her fingers found the knot and pulled it free, and as she handed him the necklace, he clasped her hand.  "Good bye, Master Pakku."

"You remember the waterbending form I showed you?" he asked voice harsh with the same kind of resentful guilt her one time betrothed had shown her every time he showed her the one and only waterbending move he had consented to teach her, a wave to push her boat along.

She nodded.  "I'll be okay."

"You're sure you remember how to use the line and tackle?"  She nodded to him again.  "And the net?  And the spears?  If you break one, can you repair it?"

"Don't worry, Master Pakku," she told him, stepping onto her boat.  "Really, I'm not your problem anymore.  I can take care of myself."

He gave her one last, disbelieving look and waved goodbye.  "Good luck, girl."

Yue whirled her arms, and her boat drifted away from the dock.  "Thank you," she said again.


attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
This looks like I can answer with my cell phone keyboard!  (On a side note, please forgive my more numerous than usual spelling mistakes in this.  I don't have spellcheck on my phone, and my spelling is lamentable at the best of times.)

Ganked from[personal profile] sholio

Give me a character and I'll tell you a piece of my personal headcanon. Any fandom is welcome here, provided that I am reasonably familiar with it.


attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
If Kindle the Wind were a novel, this would be the front cover.  Kindle the Wind is my Avatar Zuko AU.




On deviantART

Originally drawn this for the [livejournal.com profile] avatarbigbang.


The Kindle the Wind meme is still going on, and I am still accepting prompts, if you want to leave me one.
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #58, Silence.

Summary: Zuko should say something, but he remembers what happened last time

Words Lying Dead in Him

His father's war room had loomed so much larger in his memories than it did in the real world.  Zuko tried not to glance at his sister as he crossed the floor and sat down next to his father's throne, palms sweaty, skin clammy, a thirteen-year-old boy and sixteen-year-old man pulled back together and into one.  He took a deep breath and forced the memories far away.  He had permission to be here this time.  He was wanted.

The war meeting flashed by around him, through a frozen carefulness, foreign to him, that kept him pinned to his seat, and when his father looked to him to ask him to speak, his tongue stuck to the bottom of his mouth.  Song with her scars, and Lee with his lost brother, the refugees pouring into Ba Sing Se, and Jet's band of fierce, damaged souls forced their way to the forefront of his mind.  "The people of the Earth Kingdom are proud and strong. They can endure anything as long as they have hope."

"Yes, you're right," his father said with a small smile, and sense of dislocation that accompanied those words, after he had imagined them in the dark of his ship's cabin so many times, left Zuko empty.  "We need to destroy their hope."

And the cold feeling that had been born when he had come home, the shiver in his spine that said his father approved of him, but only for things he didn't do, or didn't mean, only when someone lied for him, or... knocked his mouth open.  "Well, that's not exactly what I..."

Azula pressed her lips together in a thin, cruel smile.  "I think you should take their precious hope  and the rest of their land, and burn it all to the ground."

"Yes," the Firelord hissed.  "Yes, you're right, Azula.  Sozin's Comet is almost upon us and on that day it will endow us with the strength and power of a hundred Suns.  No bender will stand a chance against us."

One of the generals blinked.  "What are you suggesting, sir?"

Ozai rose to his feet.  "When the comet last came, my grandfather, Fire Lord Sozin, used it to wipe out the Air Nomads.  Now, I will use its power to end the Earth Kingdom, permanently."  He stepped onto the map and cast his shadow, thick and heavy over everything.  "From our airships, we will rain fire over their lands. A fire that will destroy everything.  And out of the ashes, a new world will be born.  A world in which all the lands are Fire Nation and I am the supreme ruler of everything!"

The generals burst into applause, and Zuko couldn't help but wonder if underneath it, they were as horrified as he was, if underneath Azula's mask, their father's words made her sick too, or if he was all alone.  The last time he had spoken, but this time his tongue wouldn't move, and he felt his honor wither away.

attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Disclaimer: "Bring Him Home" from Les Misérables was written by Claude-Michel Schönberg, with original French lyrics by Alain Boublil and Jean-Marc Natel, and English lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer. This recording is from the 25th anniversary concert at the O2 in London, sung by Alfie Boe and produced by Cameron Mackintosh. The footage in this vid comes from Avatar: the Last Airbender, which belongs to Nickelodeon, as well as Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko.

Summary: Iroh just wants his nephew safe and whole.

Creator Commentary: I made this the same day as Mai/Zuko Something Good, right after downloading Sony Vegas, and I only made it because I couldn't find any other vids wih the same idea, which I just couldn't figure out, because really, Iroh is Jean Valjean (I have seen the idea show up in fanmixes, however, so I can't be the only one thinking this.) Originally created and posted for the [livejournal.com profile] avatarbigbang.


Bring Zuko Home



attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Disclaimer: "Something Good" from The Sound of Music was written by Richard Rogers and belongs to his estate.  This recording is from the 1965 movie soundtrack and belongs to 20th Century Fox. The footage in this vid comes from Avatar: the Last Airbender, which belongs to Nickelodeon, as well as Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko.

Summary: Mai and Zuko have had a long road to redemption.

Creator Commentary: Vidding really isn't my genre of choice, but this song kept running through my head whenever I thought about Mai and Zuko after the war's end.  It's about two people who have both done things they wish they could take back, who have been cruel and have hurt others, but hope that they have done something worthwhile to deserve their newfound happiness.  Also, I had just downloaded Sony Vegas, and I wanted to play with all the shiny new features.  Originally created and posted for the [livejournal.com profile] avatarbigbang.


Mai/Zuko: Something Good



attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #56, Celebrate.

Summary: Zuko has already turned misery into an artform.

Turn of the Sun

"Go away, Uncle."

The cabin door creaked shut.  "Nephew, the crew's getting worried."

Zuko doubted that.  He doubted the crew had even noticed.  It wasn't like it was unusual for him to spend all his time in his room, whiling away the monotonous miserable days stuck on this floating ruin of his.  "Somehow I think they'll get over it."

"It would do them good to have something to celebrate," his uncle pointed out, putting his arm around his nephew.  "You are not the only one on this ship who is far from home."

There were so many things to say to that, tumbling over and over, around themselves in Zuko's mind.  Yes, he wanted to say, wasn't it a shame he couldn't be a different, better prince.  "I'm not coming out."

"Then I'll stay here with you."  He rubbed his nephew's shoulder with his thumb.  "Happy fourteenth birthday, Prince Zuko."



attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #55, Fire.

Summary: Suki reassures her student.  Part of the Firebender!Suki AU, set directly after this.

Out of Order

"Do you think Jeong Jeong was right?"

Suki folded her fan and glanced at her student warily.  "About what?"

"That I'm messing everything up by learning firebending now, instead of waiting until I've learned waterbending and earthbending?"  Aang fiddled with Appa's reins.  "I mean..."

She snorted delicately and unfolded her fan again, running a cloth over the fine metal joints, rubbing away the rust.  "You think you're the first Avatar to try it out of order?"

"Well..."

"Kyoshi came to the island when she was too little to walk," she said.  "And she might have been an Earth Avatar, but she learned firebending from the dragons first."

"Oh."  He turned back around and flicked the reins.  "That's good to know."

She glanced at him around the fan.  "You know, if this is some scheme you cooked up to avoid firebending practice..."

"No!"  Katara yelped.  "Aang wouldn't do that!"

"Uh huh, sure."

~*~

She trudged up the steps of the headman's house and didn't look up when the fans came down to bar her way.  "Why have you come to our village?"  Her baby squalled. "Is that-"

"No!"  Not the Avatar, not the baby Chin was destroying villages to find, not her Kyoshi.

attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #54, Blue.

Summary: Her rigid precision may be all she has left, or like mother like daughter.

Control

Ursa's fire is blue.  She holds it steady in her palm.  Azulon used to watch her when she practiced, that smug, speculative look on his face.  She used to raise orange flames and slowly, carefully raise their temperature until they burned yellow, then white, then bright, clean blue.  She used to cool them down until they glowed dark cherry-rose red.  Sometimes, she would hold one blue flame and one red, one for each hand, just to prove her control.

She used to think she would need that control for the day she entered the navy, for the day she became captain, then admiral, for the days she would fight the war, and the days she would fight Agni Kais.  She imagined she would raise her flames, clear, fierce orange, and use the control she had learned changing their temperature to strike for her enemy's heart.

She looks away from Ozai as they stand before the fire sage.  He leads them to the royal hearth fire, and they hold out their hands.  His fire pours out of him soft and orange, the color of the fire the sage points to.  It joins with the living fire lit by some distant ancestor of his.

And Ursa has forgotten how to make fire that color.

It's the strength of her fire that makes the Firelord overlook her tainted blood.  Her strange, strange blue fire.

The flames change to orange as soon as they leave her hand, blending in with the others and disappearing.

attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Summary: Ozai and his son share a moment, and he lets Zuko in on a secret.

Author's Note:
Written in honor of the release of "The Promise: Part Two". As such, there are spoilers.  (And yes, because this is in the Kindle the Wind universe, Zuko is accidentally waterbending at the beginning.  The universe is lucky Ozai didn't notice.)



The Turtle-Crab and the Hawk )
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #53, Rules.

Summary: Their life together has become bounded by them, and Mai is still figuring out how to reach for Zuko through them.

The Unspoken Ones

There were rules to sleeping with the Firelord, customs, traditions, nods towards discretion, a thousand and one things they had never had to think about before when he was just a prince.  A prince who was never going to take the throne, they never talked about it, never, but Azula...  It didn't matter.  There were rules now.  There were secret passageways, and chaperones, and a tangle of betrothals broken both times Zuko had left that had to be remade and renegotiated.

There had always been rules to sleeping with Zuko, things to back away from, things that hurt too much to look at.  Things that needed to be lanced or skewered.  Things that were the remnants of Azula's friendship.  Sometimes, she couldn't see through all that to what was theirs, and what they were free to do and be.

There were rules to being a couple, any couple, and it was when the rules began to contradict each other and twist on the page that Mai wanted to throw them away and stare mutely at the wall until it was over.

Just so long, Mai decided, as there was room for Zuko and Mai in the spaces between the rules.
attackfish: Discretion prevented me from saying that I thought she was a fiend from the underworld (Lin Bei Fong MWT quote)
In which our intrepid author attempts to answer the first hundred [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompts in as few words and with as little seriousness as possible.  Each part is under 500 words, and since each part contains twenty-five fics, each fic is an average of 19 words long.

Part One: Prompts 1-25 )



Part Two: Prompts 26-50 )



Part Three: Prompts 51-75 )



Part Four: Prompts 76-100 )

attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #52, Party.

Summary: He isn't sulking, and she isn't bored.

Social Caterpillar

When she had been a child, her parents used to take her to the kind of parties where everybody was in constant danger, where a wrong word could end someone.  They would tell her to keep her mouth shut and then parade her around, and wonder why she wasn't charming and adorable like Ty Lee. That had changed.  There wasn't a party her parents wanted to go to that she wasn't invited first, and her words were the ones that could trap somebody else.

Glaze eyed introspection, the kind that had made the people her parents had tried to show her off to ask if there was something wrong with her was even less forgivable now.  She glanced sideways at her husband.  "Your sister warned me you sulked through these things."

Zuko jerked at the mention of Azula, she-who-no-one-mentioned, she-who-had-brought-them-together.  "I'm not sulking!"

"Whatever."  She rolled her eyes.  In the back of her mind, she wondered how many of the people below watching them so earnestly would think from that little thing that their marriage was on he rocks already, here at their wedding feast.  "It's not like I care.  It's the only thing I ever managed to do at these things."

"It's supposed to be for you too," he said, poking a bean curd ball around his plate with a chopstick.  "I mean, it's your wedding feast."

"That's big of you."

He ignored that.  "We can sulk together, if you want."

"I guess."  She put her hand over his.
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
That's it, folks, I can't take it.  In the hopes that maybe writing some of what I want to write will get me unblocked on the fic I'm trying to write, I'm giving in and running a commentfic meme for my Avatar!Zuko verse.  Comment with up to five requests, and I’ll guarantee you at least one commentfic.  I’ll probably answer with more, knowing me.  [livejournal.com profile] weirdlet , [livejournal.com profile] fanficforensics, [livejournal.com profile] beboots, and [livejournal.com profile] floranna  get seven requests and a guarantee of two fics, because [livejournal.com profile] beboots  and [livejournal.com profile] floranna  are the best betas ever, and [livejournal.com profile] weirdlet and [livejournal.com profile] fanficforensics just because.


Also, the 'verse has a title now, Kindle the Wind!


Air, Water, Earth, Fire.

Long ago, the four nations lived together in harmony. Then, everything changed when the Fire Nation attacked. Only the Avatar, master of all four elements, could stop them, but when the world needed him most, he vanished.

A hundred years passed and the new Avatar crashed into the ice sheet that borders our village. Although he is the Fire Nation prince, and it's his family and his nation that have brought this war to the world, I have hope that inside Zuko lies the spark of greatness. In the end, he has to save the world.


Front Cover Illustration


Timeline:

The Turtle-Crab and the Hawk
The first time Zuko struck a Fire Nation soldier in anger
Banner
Meeting Sokka and Katara
The joys of new bending
Zuko surprising himself by being spiritual and philosophical
Gran-Gran criticizing Uncle's parenting skills
Uncle Iroh finds out
Iroh has a talk with his nephew
Agni Kai against Zhao
Laying Aang to rest at the Southern Air Temple
Momo joins the Party
Sokka finds out the women on the ship aren't there to cook (and learns something, maybe)
Act of Providence
The Spinning Gates
Korra as the waterbending sifu to Zuko's successor New Nomad Avatar

attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #51, Door.

Summary: She isn't there for herself.

Solid Walls

One of her guards rushed forward to bend the door door open, and Yue stepped though, her skirt sweeping the floor, refined, traditional, and perfect.  She was a princess, a living symbol, wearing a mask that every chief's daughter had worn since the day the palace rose from the ice.

And there was nowhere to get away from it.  Against the walls of her chambers were heavy tapestries, empty porcelain vases from the Earth Kingdom, multi colored woven baskets from the Fire Nation, sculptures from her homeland.  It was as grand as any princess's chambers in the Fire Nation, any royal wife's suite in Ba Sing Se.  The Northern Water Tribe could have a princess, and dress her in fine fur robes and give her rooms like these to dwell in.  How grand and sophisticated they must be.

Her hair is white, her people said to themselves when they saw her.  The moon spirit has blessed her.  How many other nations have their princess blessed by the spirits?  How lucky we are to have her.

And when her guards sealed the door to her chambers for the night, leaving a blank wall, Yue felt her own unused, untaught waterbending answer.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
Now that Legend of Korra has officially premiered, at least in my location, I have more Highly Important thoughts to share on shipping.  It says something about just how special our fandom is when the shipping, and even the shipping wars began way back when all we had on most of these characters was a name and a picture (it’s like a dating site but more animated...  See what I did there?) And really, I can understand why, I mean, our particular fandom has a reputation to maintain as the shippiest fandom this side of a navy base, but really, the half-hearted, meta joking shipping going on right now?  It’s a mockery to the noble tradition of shipping!

It’s not entirely our fault, I know.  Bryke and crew have been encouraging this by giving us ridiculous, thinly veiled copies of the popular ships from Avatar: the Last Airbender.  It’s sad how obvious it is that Mako’s scarf/Amon’s mask is the new Zutara, and Korra/pro-bending is the new Iroh/tea.  I mean, the Korra/spinning gates people are already starting to act like the Iroh/lotus tile people, and the scarf/mask people are already calling the Mako/scarf people immature canon slaves.

I suppose I should be grateful for the lull.  After all, we are a passionate fandom, and already, as I described above, the rumblings of true fannish feuding are beginning to be felt.  At least the lighter, joking unheated shipping is all in good fun and unites us rather than divides us.  For once, we are all one fandom.

Perhaps my dissatisfaction with the way things are going is because I know what’s coming.  I will see friends and siblings in fandom torn asunder.  The cracks that our anticipation of Korra have only papered over will grow wider.  The wounds will open up and bleed anew.  The ship wars are coming my friends.  Scarf will be vilified by the Mako/Korra people, and Mako will be vilified by the scarf/mask people.  The Korra/pro-bending people will call the Korra/spinning gates relationship abusive, and there will be no more common ground.

But I swear to God, if Amon’s mask joins the good guys, I will quit this show.  It’s just too predictable.
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #50, Return.

Summary: Conquest is a rush.

Snow Melt Floods

Hanook disembarked from his flagship inside the ice covered harbor.  In the gloom, waterbenders sculpted the walls, expanding the harbor, spilling water out of dry docks for new ships to be built.  Outside the harbor, waterbenders all over the city kept up the frenetic pace.  They had to rush.  This had to happen fast.

He passed through the new streets, around the new houses, pushing aside the memories of the skin tent he had grown up in. 

He knocked on the door to the largest house in the new city.  The woman who opened the door smiled and threw her arms around his middle before leading him inside.  Her one-legged husband sat on low bench, bouncing a blown up turtle-seal bladder ball off the floor and into the hands of a little boy who kept stopping to hold the ball and suck on his thumb.

It was that missing leg that sometimes kept Hanook awake.  He wanted the little Avatar with his thumb in his mouth to think of the conquests and the new empire they were building as great things, good things.  He would shower the little Avatar with all the glories of empire.  He just had to hurry.
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
We're just over a day away from the deadline at [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 for prompt 49, Lake, and we have only one entry.  So, to prove that I am not above using bribery, for anybody who writes and posts a fill for this round to the community before the deadline (Saturday, April 7, 10:00 PM, MDT), I will drabble up an answer to any one Avatar: the Last Airbender/Legend of Korra prompt they give me here at this post.  This includes all of my existing AUs (excepting Ice Flows Through) as well as unrelated prompts.  Or, I will make a 400x600 pixel banner for any Avatar: the Last Airbender/Legend of Korra fanfic (excepting  NC-17) written by the requester that they ask me to.  (Please provide a link).  Furthermore, after the deadline, I will do the same thing for anybody who writes and posts to the community a fill for the next biweekly prompt, Return.  And yes, that means if you post a fic for each, you get two requests.

A few rules-

No Ty Zula
No NC-17
No incest
No ships where one party is much older or younger than the other(s)
No rape

Information on posting can be found here.

I'm not asking for much, just 100 to 500 words.  Good luck.


LAKE:

Piandao - Fanfare for [livejournal.com profile] c3childs 
Blind Sukka Spawn for[livejournal.com profile] lavanyasix 

RETURN:

Kori/Ty Lee - The Kyoshi guard captures the naughty assassin for [livejournal.com profile] lavanyasix 
Act of Providence - Avatar!Zuko AU for [livejournal.com profile] c3childs, who asked for "Ozai finds a genie in a bottle."  I also wrote her two short gag takes.

attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Summary: Ty Lee begins Avatar Zuko's airbending training.  Takes place in the same universe as "Banner".

Author's Note: Wow, I actually wrote a drabble just because.  I haven't written like that for a while...  Anyway, this arose out of a conversation with [livejournal.com profile] weirdlet in which we both agreed *SPOILER FOR LEGEND OF KORRA (highlight to read)* that the way Korra's first airbending lesson went was the exact same way Zuko's would have gone were he the Avatar.



The Spinning Gates (Spoilers for Legend of Korra, chapter two) )
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
Being as we are less than a month away from the beginning of Legend of Korra, and the shipping began long long before now, I have been thinking about my own shipping tendencies.   For too long, I have denied I have them, even as I have made my home in two of the most avid shipping fandoms known to humanity.  It’s true that gen fic is where my primary interest lies, and that in Harry Potter fandom, despite a fondness for the utter impossibility that is Snape/Black, I formed no allegiance to any particular pairing, and that in Avatar: the Last Airbender fandom, while I always come home to Maiko, I have never had a problem seeing any character I like with any other character I like.  In short, I sit on the shipping sidelines.  Us Maiko shippers have for the most part been content to let the Kataangers fight the battle against the Zutarans and only poke our much maligned heads above ground when certain members of the Zutaran camp (every group has their unsavories) start calling our girl an evil social climber who never loved Zuko and has a man face (man face?  What does that even mean?).  I don’t  feel the need to defend the pairing, but I do feel the need to defend the parties to it.

So I have been looking for a pairing that I can support to the point of fighting for it, a pairing that I could not see the world existing without, a pairing that I will scour every inch of canon for support for.  And I have found it.  Iroh/tea.

Now most people accept this ship, but I just can’t understand why so few people are as passionate about them as I have become.  Maybe it’s because it lacks the drama of a new relationship?  That’s a real shame that fandom can’t appreciate real, long term true love.  Iroh understands tea like nobody else.

And it’s a ship that lends itself so well to threesomes.  When Iroh shares tea with Toph, when he brews tea for Zuko...  Even Iroh playing Pai Sho with tea by his side.  There’s no need for shipping rivalry.

But the people who don’t accept this ship can be so cruel.  Those Iroh/lotus tile shippers are vicious.  In the face of all of the canon evidence for Iroh/tea, they will pick the most insignificant scenes, like the the time Iroh threw the tea Zuko made him out the window as evidence that the creators are really on their side.  Worse, some of them write whole fics with Iroh talking about how he secretly hates tea.  Seriously, people, if your ship is so great, back it up  Don’t tear down another ship because you don’t think your ship has what it takes.

So my fellows, I find I am not so above it all.  Let the shipping wars come.  In the end, Iroh/tea will prevail!

Completely seriously, though, one of the sweetest moments in the series is when Zuko tries to make tea the way his uncle likes it, and Iroh manages to down one cup, then pitches a second out the window when his nephew isn’t looking.  Aww, they try so hard.

Oh, and about the first two episodes of Legend of Korra released online?  All I got to say is, Byrke have got to be careful that the universe doesn’t collapse under the sheer weight of awesome.
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #49, Lake.

Summary: In the history of the world, there have been many conquerors, none of them great.


Which No One Can Break Down

The shorelines were rimmed with ice.  Icebergs floated south from the northern fortress, and the rivers that bisected the Earth Kingdom continent were lined with frost and Water Tribe warriors.  Nianchu knew his town could either be enslaved to them, building temples and palaces of earthbent stone the way the waterbenders did out of ice, or flee.

It wasn't really a choice.

As their wagon wheels creaked over the open ground, further an further from water, their ranks swelled, and the creaking turned into a thunder, and the thousands following looked at him like he would know what to do.  All he knew how to do was go on.

So they went on.  And the land dried up under their feet.  They pushed on, and he could hear people crying in the wagons, babies, children, crying out for water.  And they could turn back.  They could live without their freedom, but they couldn't live without water.

When the lake shimmered on the horizon, he didn't believe it until he could touch it.

"And what are we going to do when the Water Tribe comes here?" one man demanded.

Nianchu gazed out over Lake Laogai.  "We build a wall around it."
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #48, Finish.

Summary: There was a time before the Avatar, and before people knew what the Avatar was.


One Circle Closed

The lakes sank lower with each year, disappearing into the empty dust.  Fewer benders were born each year, and the people who had once lived on the backs of lion-turtles instead of rafts, and bent other people's bending were barely even memories.

No one had seen a spirit in dreams in generations.  The spirits had deserted them.  Only the blood of their greatest bender could bring them back, they whispered.

She was old.  Her children were dead, and her grandchildren were grown.  She put her own head onto the block, but when they raised the sword, her eyes glowed white.

~*~

When raiders came from the islands, his mother grabbed him and his brothers and sister and ran with them into the hills.  Fire burst out of the raiders hands and feet, catching in the thatched house roofs, and he watched it from safety, but when the fire came out of his hands, and the earth trembled with his footsteps, he ran down the hill to fight with the men of his village, and when his eyes burned white, and the voice of an old woman came out of his throat along with his own, no one stood in his way.

~*~

The dragons came out to meet her on the day she was born.  They sniffed her, their whiskers tickling her cheeks.  When they left her again, her parents breathed a sigh of relief.

As her belly grew round and full with her first child, the girl the dragons had blessed drew water from the well.  She pulled her hand up...

And the water followed.  She screamed, the water clinging to her, and she ran through the village as the old Sun warriors spoke of the boy who had driven them away from the Earth shores with earth and fire together.

~*~

As word traveled throughout the world that High Priestess of Fire with her glowing eyes and three voices had died, a woman gave birth alone, far from her clan, in a sky bison saddle.  She took the baby home and he cried into the wind.

His aunt and grandfather said he was the greatest airbender they had ever seen, but it was the day he mimicked the earthbenders at a festival and he earth moved that they realized just how powerful he really was.

"You know," his mother said, "He was born the night the three voiced Fire priestess died."
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
I am the only Jew down in Jewville not hungover today, but I have to get in on the Purim fun somehow, so meme! Post the name of any character from any of my fandoms, including my OCs, and I will tell you how they got drunk, who they were with, and what they're doing about the inevitable fallout/pounding head of doom.

Meme closed.
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Disclaimer: "Playing with the Big Boys Now" from Prince of Egypt belongs to Dreamworks animation. The footage in this vid comes from Avatar: the Last Airbender, which belongs to Nickelodeon, as well as Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko.

Warning: There are some rapid scene changes. They didn't aggravate my seizures, but I have a bigger problem with shaky cam (which this vid does not have).

Creator Commentary: This is my first and probably only vid (I made it for [livejournal.com profile] atlaland, and decided it really wasn't for me, but I'm proud of the results). While this is a villain song in the original movie, and there is some underlying commentary in here about how all of the Order of the White Lotus members are male (did they leave the recruiting up to Pakku?) this mostly it's just a celebration of how awesome the old guys of Avatar: the Last Airbender are in a genre where adults are usually useless.

Who knocks at the garden gate?


attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for[livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #47, Charm.

Summary: She tries to summon up something other than revulsion for him.


Skittering, Skittering

He had a certain kind of charm, if she had been willing to overlook what he was and what he had done.  Yue clasped her hand over her fist and bowed to him, and he bent his strange segmented legs.

He was the oldest, old when the first of the lion turtles had hatched, old when the world itself had been made out of fire.  She was the youngest.

He had been wearing the face of a Water Tribe woman when she had bowed.  In an eyeblink, he wore a moon mask, pale and half full, with silver eyes and painted eyebrows.  She shivered inside.  Tui had been the first moon, she reminded herself, and Tui's face had never been stolen.

The moon mask's painted lips curved up. "Princess."

"Koh the Face Stealer," she said, sliding down to sit against the stones.

"You come to me with a new face, moon spirit."

She didn't correct him.

"What have you come here for?"  He whirled on her like a lion-snake, and his voice reverberated around and around her head.

She didn't move.  Her face didn't move.  "I've come to ask you a question."

He hunched down.  "Then ask it, moon spirit."
attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
In honor of February 14, the first fourteen people who leave a prompt here with a ship from any of my three fandoms (pairing, threesome, moresome) and a one word prompt, I will write a 140 word story for that pairing and prompt.

A few ground rules related to my personal squicks:

No incest
No ships where one party is much older or younger than the other(s)
No ships that include both Ty Lee and Azula

Meme Closed and Finished.

Fills:

1. [livejournal.com profile] lavanyasix, Avatar: the Last Airbender: Song/Sokka - Nostalgia
2. [livejournal.com profile] selonbrody, Harry Potter: Lily/James - Spirits
3. [livejournal.com profile] floranna, Avatar: the Last Airbender: Jet/Zuko/Mai - Tanning
4. [livejournal.com profile] lunafana, Avatar: the Last Airbender: Teo/Ty Lee - Feather
5. [livejournal.com profile] gamiel, Harry Potter: Lucius/Narcissa - Surprise
6. [livejournal.com profile] clockwerkchaos, Avatar: the Last Airbender: Azula/Aang - Spicy
7. [livejournal.com profile] fanficforensics, Avatar: the Last Airbender: Suki/Zuko - Unagi
8. [livejournal.com profile] luunyscarlet, Avatar: the Last Airbender: Sokka/Zuko - Dance
9. [livejournal.com profile] weirdlet, Avatar: the Last Airbender: Sokka/Jet - Tribe
10. [livejournal.com profile] sheenianni, White Collar: Mozzie/Sally - Unexpected
11. [livejournal.com profile] avocado_love, Avatar: the Last Airbender: Toph/Zuko - Understanding
12. [personal profile] sholio, White Collar: Peter/Elizabeth - Cake
13. [livejournal.com profile] beboots, Avatar: the Last Airbender: Zuko/Yue - propriety
14. [livejournal.com profile] rabidchild67, White Collar: Neal/Peter - Sleepy


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attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #46, Hold.

Summary: Song watches the colonists leave, and watches the Earth Kingdom soldiers return.


Stitching Together

The needle and thread slid, catching, and then tugging free of the impediment.  The stitches formed a crooked, sloping line.  "Stop squirming," she said, laying her hand down on his head for a moment before she picked the needle back up. 

"I'm sorry," he grumbled, "but it hurts, and you keep sticking your stupid needle into it."

She stitched another neat X on he skin of his stomach.  "If you didn't want me doing this, maybe you should have ducked out of the way of his spear."  The needle jabbed into him again.  "Or maybe you shouldn't have gotten into a fight to start with."

Out of the corner of her eye, Song could see her mother rubbing aloe-mint paste thickly over the burns on the Earth Kingdom spearman's chest.  Sometimes, she wondered if the colonists who streamed through her village on their way back to the coast would ever leave their shores and go back to the Fire Nation, which rumor said had no room for them anymore.

She sank the needle into his flesh again, and he yelped like a child.  "Careful!"

"I told you to stop squirming."  She pulled the thread hard.  "You're lucky it was a glancing blow.  He could have killed you."

"I didn't do anything wrong," he pleaded.  "I have six daughters, and that soldier of yours was saying we should get less food than the other families because my wife's dead!  They would starve!"

Song ran her needle under the string and pulled the new knot tight.  This was what the Fire Nation had done to the Earth Kingdom, humiliated them, killed them, beat them, starved them, starved their children.  It couldn't last.  "Be careful," she told him instead of what she thought.  "Take it easy for a few days, and that should hold."
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #45, Earth.

Summary: If you ask Katara, Toph's a horrible earthbendng teacher. But nobody asked Katara.


Stop the Rock

Aang peered anxiously at the boulder on the ledge above them.  "You really think this is the best way to teach her earthbending?"

"Actually," Toph beamed at him and hopped down off the ledge.  "There is a better way."  She snatched Katara's belt and wrapped it around her eyes.  As the light cut out, Katara sighed hard.  "This way she’ll really have to sense the vibrations of the boulder to stop it. Thank you Aang."

Katara sighed harder.

Toph bounced back up onto the ledge and shoved the boulder with a smirk.

Katara felt it.  She could really feel it rumbling towards her.  It rumbled, and she rolled out of its way like a spinning top.  She let her head hang for just a second.  "Sorry."

"Yeah, you are sorry."  Katara wanted to smack her, but Toph wasn't finished.  "If you’re not tough enough to stop the rock, then you could at least give it the pleasure of smushing you instead of jumping out of the way like a jelly-boned wimp! Now, do you have what it takes to face that rock like an earthbender?"

"Yes," she snapped.  "I do."

"Then prove it!" A new boulder burst out of the ground and Toph sent it careening towards her, faster, and larger than the last.  Katara planted her feet and held her arms ready.

The rock hit them  She thought for certain they were going to break.  But it wasn't her bones, but the rock that broke, raining down around her.

The laughter leapt out of her. "What do you say to that?" she crowed at the tiny earthbender, yanking her blindfold away.

Toph walked over and tapped one of the stone chunks with her toe, grinning.  "You're supposed to stop the rock, not blow it up, what's wrong with you?"
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #44, Yellow.

Summary: To Zuko, the war had always been a distant thing.

Warnings: Dead bodies, genocide, you know usual Avatar stuff.


Glory

The light shone down from a hole in the ceiling.  Zuko stared down at the floor stones, yellow in the southern summer sun, yellow and warm, like they weren't strewn with bodies.

His eyes rose, following the line of armored, red-clothed skeletons and scattered, cracked and rusted helmets.  At the end, there was a heap of dust and broken wall, and saffron cloth holding bleached, clean-picked bones in the light from the broken ceiling.

In the western temple, there hadn't been any bodies.  Vaguely, he remembered reading about the soldiers dropping them over the edge of the cliff.

He couldn't stand.  His legs wouldn't hold him.  The wall behind him felt like water, like he was falling right through it, right through the floor, right through the mountain and the pile of bones.

He closed his eyes.  He turned around.  He did everything he could to make the bodies and bones invisible, make them go away.  His uncle stood, admiring the faded figures on the walls, and Zuko's feet marched, his body following.  His armor pinched.  He could feel it pulling him down.  His uncle looked up.  Zuko swallowed and couldn't breathe.

He met his uncle's eyes.  "There's nothing here."
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #43, Never.

Summary: Sokka is Katara's older brother.

New Worlds

She was two, and the ice climbed up her legs with every step she took.  She was four, and the snow parted around her when she spun around.  She was six and the waves under their canoe sank into valleys and rose into mountains.

She was eight and their mother...  Their mother was dead.

She was ten and nothing moved.  She was ten and their father was gone.

She was twelve, and nothing moved.

On her thirteenth birthday, she pointed at his watchtower, and told him it was stupid, and it fell down.  Sokka started screaming.  He couldn't stop.  He danced around, grabbed her around the neck and planted a kiss on her cheek.

He sat on the steps sometimes, while she trained with Sourpants-Pakku, and watched her remake the world.

Their dad told him he was supposed to protect her, but how could he when she didn't need it?
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #42, Music.

Summary: Azula is good at everything important.

Useful

Azula threw down the biwa in disgust.  It clattered against the floor of the music room and jolted Zuko out of his own playing.  The strings popped and burst free from their tethers as Azula shot to her feet, pelted the pick across the room.  It stuck in the wall and vibrated like a knife blade.  Zuko stared at it until it stopped moving.

"Please, Princess Azula," the music master smiled, tight lipped, voice too calm.  "Come sit down."

"No!"  She spun around in the doorway, the tendons in her arms popping like she as going to pull the walls down.  "I don't have to!  It's not going to make me a better firebender, or help me conquer the Earth Kingdom, or rule the Fire Nation, or... anything!"

The pounding of her feet grew quieter and quieter, and Zuko just eyed the music master and waited to be noticed again.

Azula didn't give up.  She never gave up.  And she was always good at everything.  All the sour notes- She just didn't care.

"Prince Zuko."

Zuko picked up his tsungi horn, then put it down.

Of course it was useless.  He was good at it.
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for the [livejournal.com profile] atlaland and [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 joint challenge, prompt #41, Window.

Summary: Iroh is locked up, but he's also cut adrift.

It Doesn't Hold Him

There was a window above the cage, and he could just barely feel the sun on his hands and feet when he pushed them out of the bars and into the patch of light it cast.

"I brought you some komodo-chicken." Zuko's voice fluttered on the air, hesitant, sullen. "I know you don't care for it, but I figure it beats prison food."

Iroh turned his back.

His nephew clutched the bars, unscarred eye wide. "I admit it. I have everything I always wanted, but it's not at all how I thought it would be. The truth is, I need your advice."

The words should have been sweet. At last he admitted it. At last he was willing to listen. Iroh kept his hands onside the cage, away from his nephew. Now he was willing to listen. Now.

He kept talking. Iroh listened with half an ear because he couldn't stop himself. "I think the Avatar is still alive. I know he's out there. I'm losing my mind."

He didn't answer. And when Zuko stormed away, tears ran down Iroh's face.

He didn't look up. The world outside that window wasn't one he wanted to look at anyway.


attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Disclaimer: If I owned Avatar: the Last Airbender, I would have somehow found a way to be even meaner to Zuko. I guess it's a good thing I don't own it.

Summary: The problem with Zuko's exile is that every ocean has become enemy waters for a Fire Nation Prince, and when his ship is captured by the Northern Water Tribe, he has nowhere to turn for help.

Warning: captivity, major character death, bullying the powerless, humiliation.

Author's Note: Written for [personal profile] unjapanologist who won my entry in the [livejournal.com profile] help_japan charity auction. Which means I started this seven months ago. Yeah, I know. Anyway, thank you for your generosity to a worthy cause,[personal profile] unjapanologist!


This takes place several years before the drabble, "Releasing It".



Holding This Breath )


attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #40, Give. Meant as a companion to my drabble Shadows on the Floor.

Summary: Mai can see it happen.

Stand Beside the World

Mai knew the day she was betrothed to Zuko that she would one day have to stand beside him in front of the world, and the morning she saw him again in Ba Sing Se, she knew it would be worth it. Sometimes, watching Azula play her power games, and Zuko bristle and let her made a fist clench and then unclench inside her, and hoped, a little furious with herself, that when it came time for Azula to take power, Zuko would just bristle and let her. Then she could stand a few steps behind Azula at Zuko's side, instead of at Zuko's side in front of the world.

He should just give way. Azula was unstoppable anyway, and if he just gave up, she could still have him when it was over. They could make their lives in the in between places of the palace, and in the cracks of the world.

Their love flourished in code, in words whose meanings changed shape when they spoke them, in masks they only took off with each other, together, alone. They touched, and Mai wanted to give him everything.

When Zuko left, the world gave way beneath her. She tried to piece it together in that prison chamber, so she could leave him there, but there was something hatefully like hope in his face when he talked about the Fire Nation, and there was that restless, relentless conviction that if he threw himself against anything long enough, it would give.
attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for [livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #39, Captive.

Summary: He doesn't know how to tell her the truth.


Shadows on the Floor

His chest hit the chair, forcing the air out of his body, and he twisted around, but the guards ignored him as he shouted that he hadn't done anything wrong.

"Come on, Zuko, we all know that's a lie." She stepped out of the gloom in the corners of the room, arms folded across her chest.

"Mai," ever since he could remember, he had always fought to tell the difference between the slight variations of her voice, when she was bored, and when she just didn't want him to know she wasn't, when she was happy, and when she thought he was an idiot. It got easier and easier, until right then, when her fury and scorn were staring him in the face.

He scrambled into the chair and she stood back against the wall again. He rubbed his arms where they had hit the arms of the chair. The door was open, but neither of them tried to leave.

"You could've at least looked me in the eye when you ripped out my heart." It wasn't funny. It shouldn't be funny, listening to Mai talk about feelings, deadpan and cold.

His mouth moved, but it caught on the words.

"This isn't about you," he told her. This isn't about you. It's about people dying, and choosing sides, and trying to figure out what's right. And he couldn't speak, not about the things he needed to. I love you, he wanted to say. Come away with me, I love you.


attackfish: Jet and Zuko fighting in the teashop, text "Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics" (Jet Juko TDL quote)
Written for[livejournal.com profile] avatar_500 prompt #38, Road.

Summary: Ty Lee fears the change more than she fears facing him.

Author's note: This is part of that mirrorverse I've been playing with in the commentfic memes, with eldritch abomination Aang. If you want to read it, click on the "meme" tag and all of the parts are conveniently linked in the body of the commentfic meme entries. There are also four drabbles, Fight and Flight, Stay his Hand, Spirals Within Spirals, and Wake


Snuff the Candle

Ty Lee's great grandmother hadn't been there the day they fought the Avatar, the day they sealed him in the ice for a hundred years.  They thought it would be forever.  They hoped it would be forever, but nothing was ever forever.

She hadn't been there the day the peaceful monks and nuns had torn each other apart under the Avatar's power, even after they locked him in ice.  She hadn't been there, but when the survivors crawled home with their stories, she had listened with her hand clamped over her mouth.  And she had passed the stories on.

It felt like Ty Lee had been following Azula her whole life, like Azula had always been there with her thousands of sharp edges and unexpected affections.  It felt like Ty Lee had always stood beside Mai, who never let her lie to herself, who never even considered mixing her up with someone else.  They had chased the Avatar and his followers for a day and a night once without rest, and the exhaustion still tugged at her memory.  The chase went on and on, and they kept getting close, and each time they did, she felt the darkness closing in.

If they ended tearing each other apart, like the monks and nuns on the ice, leaving bloody scraps of bone on the ground for the rest of the world to find, Ty Lee didn't want to know.  She crushed down the bitterness and hatred she felt just watching her friends.

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