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The Time for Change

Chapter Text

Slipping on her blue robe as she strode out the shower, Korra roughly rubbed her hair dry with a towel. Walking through the hallway into her bedroom, the clock on her night stand letting her know she only had 20 minutes before she had to be seated in her car and leaving the parking lot of her apartment for work. "Shit." She hissed. Eyeing the clock as though it was at fault for her having to rush out the door.

Granted, Korra was never a morning person to begin with.

She tossed the towel she was drying her hair with on the bedroom floor and ran back into her bathroom. She flipped the ventilation on in hopes it would get rid of the steam from her earlier shower. When the steam wouldn't subside fast enough, she used her wrist to try to rub the fog off her bathroom mirror. Giving up, she tried to apply makeup, the fogged up mirror making it a hassle. She mumbled curses under her breath when the eyeliner wouldn't smooth on a perfect wing. Not that she was good with makeup. Heaven's no! But it was worth a shot to make a good impression with her first job after graduating college. Although she never strived to become a office assistant, it was better than nothing considering her real dream job was forever lost to her.

Don't, Korra, she sighed, don' take yourself back there.

Giving up on any attempt to properly apply her makeup, she agressively wiped it off her face with a wet cloth and opted to just using mascara and color in her brows.

Close enough, she shrugs, contorting her face sarcastically in the mirror and throwing her hair in a ponytail before slipping into a navy blue pencil dress and white button down collared blouse with tiny blue anchors all over. She slid her feet into her blue suede pumps and quickly stood up to make her way out her bedroom door. She winced when she felt the edge of the shoe scrape against her ankle and hurriedly made the decision to switch to flats. Korra stuffed a bagel in her mouth and hurriedly poured dog food in Naga's, her large white and beautifully loyal and ferocious dog, bowl before writing a quick note to her dog's walker.

Swallowing the last bite of her bagel, Naga followed Korra to the front door. "Be back later, girl." Korra whispered excitedly, while bending down and scratching behind both of Naga's ears.

Naga whined in protest as Korra stood up to grab her keys and purse off her coffee table.

Korra turned around to look around her apartment as she opened the door. Moving to Republic City was a vast and frightening change for her. But goodness knows that's definitely what she needed. Change. S sighed, turning off the living room light and gently closing the door behind.

Change.

Korra walked down the hall towards the elevator, her heart ready to move on from her past. But her past would not hold a candle to the obstacles that truly lied ahead. Change was definitely coming,

Chapter Text

The lights were dim aside from the stage area. Colored in bright lights with the smell of sweat and blood settling in the air. The tension as thick as the humidity of bodies shouting and screaming at the two fighters circling each other in the ring. Beer flinging out of cups, signs shaking above the heads of fans from both opposing sides. The announcer narrating the details of the fight with as much speed as an auctioneer.

It was blinding, the ring. Placed in the center like some holy stage. The fighters glistening in sweat like gladiators, bodies built like gods, and an essence glowing off their forms with confidence and strength. And man, oh, man did Korra love it.

She inhaled the scent in the air like it was fresh air, taking in the atmosphere of all the excitement. Eight year old Korra couldn't hold in the energy building up in her lungs and exhaled with a shout. Waving her right arm in the air and aggressively shaking the sign in her left reading "Unleash The Fury!" Written in bold colors and designs obviously made by a second grader. Korra jumped up and down, causing her short ponytail to bounce, standing in her seat between her parents. The adrenaline pulsing in her veins, the crowd's cheers, and the loud music ringing in her ears caused her heart to pump in ways she never felt before.

"For spirits sake, Korra, calm down!" Senna, Korra's mother shouted over the noise. Grabbing Korra's left arm, halting the sign that was tearing under her daughter's grip, "There's no reason to act in such a manner!"

A deep chuckle turned the heads of both mother and daughter to the right of their seats. Tonraq, Korra's father, was holding his belly laughing in amusement. Seeing his daughter become so energetic over a sport they've bonded over since the day she was practically born brought a grin to his face and a twinkle in his eye. "Oh, come on , Senna, it's the first MMA match she's ever been to. After only seeing it on tv, who can blame her for her reactions?" He turned to face his daughter and winked.

Senna huffed, not pleased with how her husband was handling the situation. But what did she expect coming to a Mixed Martial Arts fighting match with the two biggest fans she's ever known? Pursing her lips in a thin line , she tried to hold back the smile tugging at her lips and instead chose to shake her head at their antics.

Korra proceeded with her cheering. It's the first time an Professional fight had ever been held in the Southern Water Tribe and out of all the fights that could've landed in the South Pole, the match was held between her favorite fighter, Durjaya, a long-time professional from the Earth Kingdom and Masaru, a fighter from Republic City. And, boy was the match fierce. Korra couldn't hold back the squeals that escaped her mouth every time Durjaya got in a hit or kick, mimicking his movements with large thrust in the air from her small fists. This truly was something to behold.

Tonraq grabbed Korra by her shoulder and brought her cheek to his. "My yuka."

Korra made a wide toothy smile, showing off the gaps where her two front teeth were supposed to be while taking in all her surroundings. She loved seeing the pride in her father's eyes. She would forever imprint that in her mind. She was sure to make her dad proud from this point on. No matter the cost.

*break*

Korra tapped the heel of her black ballet slippers on the finely finished wood flooring of her boss's office. Watering the plants sitting by the window in the corner of the room while nodding her head in time with the music playing off the earbuds connected to her phone. She carefully looked over the schedule she had prepared for Asami Sato's day while holding the folder in one hand and holding the watering container in the other. Humming and gently moving her hips to the music.

Korra had only been working for Future Indistries for 3 months now, under the daughter of Hiroshi Sato herself.

Asami and Korra were introduced through a friend several years ago while Korra was visiting in the Fire Nation and they hit it off. When time to graduate college was near and Korra hadn't a clue on what to actually pursue considering she stuck with basic classes all four years, Asami came to her rescue and offered her a job at her father's corporate office in Republic City as her assistant. Korra didn't have a clue on the first thing about working in a corporate office, and sitting behind a desk wasn't the least bit appealing to her but due to unfortunate circumstances, she didn't know what else to do.

Asami surprisingly had faith in her. And although Hiroshi had his doubts about Korra, Asami convinced him that she'll catch on quick. She wasn't so sure how much truth was in that but Korra gave it her all for Asami's sake as well as her own. She cared little for Hiroshi himself. The man was off putting and she didn't trust him from what ever sickening gut feeling he gave whenever he showed his presence around her. She never bothered to tell Asami this, assuming it she just had genuine dislike for Hiroshi but it was mutual and she could've cared less.

Indeed, she did catch on quickly. After a week she sorted out a routine that put Asami's every day work load at ease, something Hiroshi huffed about every time Asami would praise Korra.

Korra always made sure to poke her tongue out every time he turned his back. Asshat.

Korra set the watering container on the office book stand and turned her wrist to check the time. 11:08. Korra grabbed the folder containing some form's she had Asami sign earlier that morning and lifted it over her shoulder until she felt a hand grip it, letting go and proceeding to hum without turning her head. Same time every day, she sung in her head while pursuing her lips. Seeing an associate from eleventh floor leave the office with the folder she just handed her out of the corner of her eye.

She reviewed another folder she was to present to Asami from some current investors and made her way to Asami's desk and neatly set the file on top of it. Her friend would be back from lunch around 11:30 so she could prepare for her next meeting at noon. That's when Korra usually took the opportunity to go to lunch.

Lost in thought on weather noodles or seaweed wraps sounded good for lunch, she failed to notice the tall gentleman standing in the doorway trying to get her attention. After several hellos and an irritated grunt, Korra's earbuds were pulled from her ears, causing her to snap her head up and furrow her eyebrows in frustration only to meet the most beautiful set of gold eyes she's ever seen.

Without realizing it, she gulped. The stranger who interrupted her thoughts was six feet tall, coal black short hair and smooth pale skin. Under his black dress pants and vest accented by his red button up casual collared shirt and red scarf, he was most likely well built too.

"Hello?!" He said, stretching the word as though she didn't comprehend the first time, and she most likely didn't, Korra shook her head, bringing herself back to reality.

"Can I…" clearing her throat," help you."

"Yes," he groaned, rolling his eyes and shaking his head, "I am trying to get in touch with Miss Asami Sato. And," he paused, looking her up and down with a frown," I assume you are her assistant."

Korra narrowed her eyes at his scrutiny and clenched her jaw. Despite her chocolate skin, her blush was probably visible from her frustration and possibly from embarrassment of how her heart skipped a beat when she looked into his eyes.

"I apologize," she stated with a sarcastic tone. She grabbed Asami's schedule but didn't see any appointment scheduled with the man standing in front of her," Misses Sato is currently on lunch but I would be glad to leave a message for her, Mr…"

"My name is Mako. And no need for a message, I'll just meet up with her at the meeting this afternoon. I was only hoping to catch up with her before then."

He turned on his heels and exited the office without another word. His body language letting her know he wasn't pleased with their introduction.

Well, he was a jerk.

Luckily Korra felt confident in her ability to deflect unsavory people like him. She's done it plenty of times with Hiroshi Sato. No matter t her, she would still sleep at night.

11:22. Asami should be back in a few moments.

Korra picked up the watering container and headed out of the office to dump the remaining water. Her thoughts lingering back to the stranger, Mako, as she plugged her earbuds back in. Hopefully, she would have little interaction with him in the future.

*break*

The day after Korra's encounter with Mako, she was typing emails when she seen him walk in again.

Red was most definitely his color. His black suit pants and vest were stripped with silver lining and his maroon shirt was rolled up to his elbows. Giving him a professional and easy going look.

Korra stood up quickly as he approached the area outside of Asami's office where her desk lied. Age quickly looked at her wrist. 9:33.

"Good morning, Mr Mako."

He turned his head in her direction and nodded in acknowledgment without saying a word. He then walked into Asami's office and quietly shut the door behind him. Through the open blinds covering the glass windows surrounding Asami's office, Korra could make out his approach towards Asami's desk. Watching him glide over to her and laying his palms on her desk and leaning towards her in conversation.

Really?

Korra couldn't help but roll her eyes at his obvious intentions.

They were in there for a good fifteen minutes before Asami got up from her desk, opening the door to her office and walking out with Mako laughing as he made a big grin at the ring of her laughter.

"Oh, Korra," Asami smiled brightly," let me introduce you to our new Director of personal and training coordination, Mako. Mako, this is Korra, my assistant and a great one at that."
Mako couldn't fool Korra with that fake smile with all his might. "We actually had the pleasure of meeting each other yesterday morning. I just happened to miss you while you were at lunch."

"Oh." Asami's eyebrows knitted, "I'm glad you two got to meet. Well, I have to rush but feel free to stop by if you have any questions or concerns."

"Will do."

After Asami disappeared in the elevator, Mako's shoulders slumped.

"She has a boyfriend, you know."

Mako snapped his head in Korra's direction with a scrowl. " I don't know why your telling me this."

"Really? So you weren't undressing her with her eyes?" She huffed with a smirk, crossing her arms in front of her. Korra gets it, Asami was attractive, kind, smart and strong.. Roll that all in one and you've got yourself the woman of your dreams.

"And if I was?"

"Nothing. Just know nothing will come of it considering she's in a committed and long term relationship." Asami and Iroh have been together for years. Iroh, being a long time family friend of Korra's, had, years ago, introduced her to Asami.

Korra could see the blush creep up his neck to his cheeks. Her mind whirled with how cute he looked.

Clearing his throat. He mumbled a goodbye and headed into the elevator.

Chapter Text

Korra studied her reflection in the full length mirror attached to her bedroom closet door. Turning to view her side while in her navy blue underwear, she looked down and pulled the tiny flap developing on her abdomen.

Ugh. I've been slacking.

It's been a few weeks since she was last at the gym. After aggressively letting out some steam on a punching bag she beat to a sack, the pain in her hips prevented her from visiting regularly.

She couldn't help it after she received the bill for the cost of fixing the air conditioner in her apartment. The landlord was making up excuses to fix it himself and after standing around in just her panties during the whole week the motor went out was not keeping the heat at bay. The humidity was so thick, Naga ended up looking like an oversized poodle with a bad hack job. Poor thing couldn't see her own paws in front of her the whole time.

But regardless of the cost it was worth it not to die of a heat stroke or Naga's sweaty dog breath.

Turning to her body to face the front of the mirror and tilting her head, she blew a piece a her hair out of her face and rubbed her hands on her the sides of her muscular thighs.

Did she really want to go to the gym on her day off?

The slimming of thrmuscle mass in her arms said yes.

She opened the dresser draw next to her closet and rummaged out a pair of ankle length active leggings and a sports bra. She pulled her gym bag from under her bed and threw the apparel inside along with some clean socks and tennis shoes.

After filling Naga's bowl with dog chow, she grabbed her phone and earbuds and threw them in her purse. She aggressively scratched Naga behind the ears and stood to walk out the door. Once she reached the bottom level and walked out the door to the complex's parking lot, she started to feel a familiar burning sensation in her hips. Lifting her head to look a the sky, she could see dark clouds advancing.

Shit. Looks like rain.

Jogging to her blue sedan, Korra hurriedly threw her gym bag in the back seat and quickly jumped in the front before the rain drops slammed down to earth. The pain in her hips slightly intensified. Damn her hips!

*break*

The raindrops began to slow down driving east of Republic City. She was half to the gym when the rain slowed down, pattering against her vehicle in a peaceful hum. The calming hum causing her thoughts to drift to the previous week.

Mako visited Asami's office everyday that week with a snack in his hand or inviting her to join him for lunch.

Korra would quietly chuckle at how suave he was trying to be. Despite his good looks and cool aura, he was surprisingly clumsy and often stumbled on his words whenever he was easily embarrassed. Korra wasn't sure if Asami was oblivious to his advances or just flat out ignored them. But he wasn't backing down no matter how many times she declined him.
The day leading up to the weekend, Korra turned her wrist to check the time. 10:44. Korrs was alone on the floor when she heard the ring alerting the elevator doors open. Mako stepped out with holding a container of rice cookies in one hand and an envelope in the other. Before he could process that Asami was actually in when peeking through her doorway, he felt the envelope slip through his fingers. He quickly turned around to face Korra as she flipped the envelope over to review the contents.

"Hey!"

"Don't tell me you were planning on leaving her a love letter."

"Give it back!" He growled, lifting his hand to grab the envelope only for Korra to snatch it behind her back.

"At first your attempts to woo Asami were pretty entertaining but at this point it's only gotten pathetic."

His face turned red from either embarrassment or frustration, Korra wasn't sure. "I don't care what you think. I told you to give it back!" He made to reach behind her back and Korra stepped to the side, turning to avoid his hand.
"Despite my warning, your still trying to go out of your way to steal Asami. Do you not have any respect for the years she put in to make her relationship work?"

Korra has known Iroh since she was a little girl. He's a decade older than her and he treat Korra like a little sister. She looked up to him and he always protected her up until he left for the military when she was 8. Sending her post cards and souvenirs throughout the years. When he had introduced Asami to her a few years back when she visited the Fire Nation, Korra was skeptical. Asami was beyond beautiful, and girls as beautiful as Asami didn't come with nice personalities. But after getting to know her Korra learned that not only was she intelligent and strong but good natured and understanding. They've been close ever since. So if there was the slightest possibility, and she doubt there was, that Mako could split up the couple, she wasn't going to stand by and watch. At least that was what she was telling herself but she chose the former as a better reason why she was going out of her way to stop Mako.

"I'm not trying to steal her away ." His shoulders slump and he faced his head down, resting his chin on his chest," I just...I just don't know what else to do with these feelings..."
Korra couldn't help but stare at him. Although she could tell he was attracted to Asami, she honestly didn't take into consideration the depth of his feelings for her.

"Tell me about it?"

"What?" Mako's eye lifted to Korra's, finally realizing what a beautiful shade of blue the overhead light gave her eyes. "Tell you what?"

Korra gently wrapped her hand around the wrist holding the cookie container. "Tell me how she makes you feel. Sometimes it's better to let these things out and I'm willing to listen if you'll let me." She allowed a genuine smile to grace her lips.

Mako's eyes widened in surprise at the sincerity in her words. After a few moments of silence he shook his head and sighed. Removing his wrist from Korra's grasp noticing the contrast in their skin, he took a deep breath.

"It started about a month ago when I was heading here for an interview. I parked across the street from the main entrance when I didn't notice a satocycle coming towards me. When I finally managed to turn my head in time to fall all my ass, it came to a complete stop just inches away where I fell. That's when Asami immediately jumped off her Satocycle and helped me off the rode. Before I had the chance to tell her off she was just so..." he paused, looking to the side and scratching the back of his head. " She helped dust me off and offered to take me to dinner the next evening. She even called it a date."

Korra mentally smacked her forehead at Asami's typical over friendliness. No wonder he felt lead on. She gently lifted her hand to his cheek and turned it to face her and nodded for him to continue.

"The 'date' went so great. We talked for hours and her laugh really made my night. We stayed at the restaurant til close and even after that it took for the manager to kick us out before we left. We walked around Central Park, pointing out the stars and discussing trivial things. She never attempted to touch me or anything of that sort but I only assumed it was modesty and I only wanted to be the perfect gentleman so I never bothered to question it. Until she told me she had a boyfriend during one of our late night conversations a few days later on the phone. I was crushed. Here I thought we hit it off and... she was just so perfect. How could I have even thought for a moment that a girl like that was single?"
Korra took it all in. If it were her, she wouldn't know what to do with yourself. Finding someone on the same level as you like that was rare, and if it was Korra, she doubt she could let it ago. And it explained why it was so hard for him to give up easily. The situation was so much deeper than she realized. She wasn't sure what she was expecting but it wasn't that.

"Listen, Mako, as much as I can sympathize, you have to let this go. I don't blame you for your feelings and i kinda understand how you feel but as both Asami and Iroh's friend it's best for you to back off and move on. How you feel about Asami isn't wrong and I hope you never believe that a love such as that will never come your way again. I only hope you'll take the opportunity to think about how to sever your feelings for Asami and instead be a good friend to her."

The contorted expression Mako gave her made it clear he was not pleased with her response.

Folding his arms in front of his chest, he stood tall and gold eyes pierced into blue. Clenching his teeth and lowering his voice, "You know what this is really about?"

Korra arched an eyebrow at his tone and waited for an answer.

"Jealousy. Your jealous of Asami. You stick by her and act like the loving, over protective friend behind that little desk of yours. But your just a spectator, someone outside looking in. And you'll never reach the inside."

Before he could say another word the envelope was pushed so hard against his chest, he nearly fell backwards. After catching his footing, Korra's blue eyes turned dark and her eyebrows furrowed. If looks could kill. "Thank you, for stopping by Director Mako. I will inform Miss Sato of your most recent visit. Have a nice day." She stomped her way to her desk and angrily pulled out her chair, sitting in it in a huff. She didn't bother to look at Mako's face because she would've seen the flicker of regret in it. The sound of paper ripping reached her ears and she looked down as it was tossed in the trash basket next to her desk. What looked like a pair of tickets slipped out of the ripped envelope, also ripped in the middle.

Korra averted her eyes to her computer and didn't think twice about it.

*break*
The rain ceased as Korra drove into the parking lot of Zen's Gym and Sparring Ring. She parked at the back of the Lot in order to warm up a bit before she entered the building. There were only three other vehicles in the parking lot. The gym was small and not very popular. Zen the owner was an elderly man from the Earth Kingdom who adored professional fighting just as much as Korra did. They could go on for hours about it. With that being one of the reasons Korra was a loyal customer, Zen took pride and care in his business's equipment and despite them being outdated, they always worked like they were brand new.

Korra noticed Bolin's green sports car as one of three vehicles. Korra met him not long after joining the gym and he made for a great sparring partner when Korra's hips would allow her to do so. She never told Bolin about her condition because she knew he would hold back or get her to stop all together. But it was fun to spar with someone, so Korra kept it from her friend and thought it was worth it on those long nights of using the electric heating pad to soothe the pain.

As Korra strode through the entrance, a girl sat at the front counter reading a magazine. It was Zen's granddaughter.

lifting her head up the emerald eyed girl turned her head in Korra's direction and smiled,"Hey, how's it going?"

"Eh, nothing much. Just here to catch up on some sets. It's been a while since I've been here."

"I know, Granddad has been asking about you."

"Well while your here, I'll go ahead and give you your payment." Korra reached into her purse and pulled out some money. Seda walked dogs in the area on top of helping her grandfather with his gym, so Korra was lucky to find her in time before she started working at Future Indistries.

"Thanks?" Seda tilted her head and quietly giggled as Korra placed the crumpled yuans in her open palms.

"So, Bolin is here, I presume."

Seda averted her eyes and her face turned a beet red. Korra couldn't help but smirk at Seda's adorable crush on Bolin. "Yes, he's actually in the fighting ring with a friend right now. He hasn't been here too long before you came, if you wanna go see him."

"Nah, imma do a few sets before I catch him. See ya around, Seda."

Seda nodded in response. The magazine Seda was reading caught Korra's eye. A white mask with a red circle on top graced the cover, the dark eyes behind the slits sending shivers up her spine. Korra was aware of the Red Circle Equalist Rebellion after she first moved to the city. Although she agreed Republic City government should be ran by the people instead of five dunderheads from the neighboring four nations, the violence caused by the Equalist's rallies were the wrong way to go about it. She was never really into politics to begin with.

Korra left the counter to go into the ladies changing room so she could dress into her active leggings and sports bra. Coming out of the changing room she headed into the warm up area to work the sets in order to tone out her arms, stomach and thighs. After she ran a treadmill for 20 minutes, she decided to peek in on Bolin and his so called friend.
She walked to the back of the gym where the practice fighting ring stood. Walking through the swinging doorway she seen Bolin and his friend in the ring circling each other on opposing sides. Korra crossed her arms and leaned her back against the wall by the door and waited til the two finished their fight. It was clear the two had previously gone several rounds by how much sweat was drenched on their shirts.

Korra didn't recognize Bolin's opponent. His fighting helmet covered most of his head. He wore black shorts and a dark red sleeveless top. His muscles were sculpted and defined but he was slimmer and taller than Bolin.

Both men had their bandaged fists up to their faces and Bolin moved quickly to make the first swing. The other man blocked his move with his arm and swung his fist in Bolin's direction only for Bolin to step to quickly step to the side to avoid the attack. After a while of the two going at it, Bolin found himself on the ground with the other man's legs wrapped around his and his arms wrapped his arms and chest.

"Okay! Okay! I give, now let go of me!" Bolin gasped. The other man laughed and released Bolin from his hold.

"Nice sparring with you, little bro."

"Yeah, yeah. But don't forget I beat you the last two rounds."

The other man stood up, grabbing Bolin's forearm to help him up as well.

Before Korra could greet either one of the men, they both took off their helmets and shirts, wiping the sweat off their brows with them. When Bolin removed his shirt out of his face, his eyes lit up when he noticed Korra in the room.

"Korra! What is up?!"

Korra had to do a double take when she took a look at the other man. It was Mako. Well fran-freaking-tastic. She mumbled under her breath as she approached the ring the brothers were standing at.

"Not much going on. Haven't seen you in a while. How have you been lately?"

"Better than ever." He grinned,"Oh, by the way, this is my big brother, Mako. Mako this is Korra. An awesome sparring partner considering." He flexed the muscles in his arms.

"Yeah, considering I've beaten you almost every time." Korra chuckled. "I've already had the pleasure of meeting your brother, Bolin."

"What?" He looked between the both of them," How?"

"We both work in the same building, Bo." Mako said.

"Oh, yeah, you did get that job didn't you?" He tapped his finger on his chin,"Makes sense! Hey Korra, up for a little go with me then?"

She shook her head, the pain in her hips were starting to burn again," Not today. Rain check?"

Bolin clapped his hands together once and pointed his fingers at Korra ," Rain check, buddy!"

Both brothers jumped out of the ring and Bolin went to wrap his arms around Korra's waist while lifting her in the air and shaking her. Korra busted out laughing.

"So," Korra started as Bolin planted her feet back on the ground,"Seda seems a little flustered today. Anything special going on with her lately?"

Bolin turned the same color red as Seda did earlier," Well you can say she had this amazing date with a exceptionally handsome guy last weekend and is now her boyfriend. So, Korra, I'm going to have to ask that you bump this."

Bolin brought his fist up and Korra and Mako turned to look at each other as he walked up, Mako's look telling her to humor him. So Korra connected her fist to Bolin's. "I'm happy for you, Bo."

Looking over at Mako, Korra's vision strayed to his stomach, noticing his six pack. And, spirits, there were really six of them.

The clearing of Mako's throat snapped her eyes up to his face. His smirk was teasing but quickly faded and his face turned serious. "Korra, I'm actually glad I ran into you." He bit his bottom lip and Korra raised her eyebrows,"About yesterday, it was uncalled for. You were only trying to help and I honestly didn't want to accept what you were telling me. I considered what you said and I know your right. Your a good friend to Asami and I hope that if you see past my idiotic mistakes, we can become friends. Maybe?"

He extended his hand in her direction. Her eyes widened in shock at his confession. But she couldn't help the sideways smirk tugging on her lips and she grabbed his hand and shook it. "Maybe." She responded.

He smiled again and turned to leave, Korra staring at his perfect ass with her head cocked as he walked away.

"You've got drool on the side of your mouth."

Korra jumped at Bolin's voice and quickly wiped the back of her hand on her mouth before she seen it come up dry. She snapped her head at Bolin as he turned on his heels to walk away, trying to hold back his snickers. He didn't have time to avoid the helmet coming towards his head.

Korra has always had good aim.

Chapter Text

Mako opened the door to his red two door sports car and slumped hard into the drivers seat, heart hammering in his chest.

What the fuck was that?!

He never expected to see Korra at the gym he just recently joined, let alone find out she was friends with his younger brother. But, spirits, was he taken aback. From her head down to her feet, Korra had the body of a goddess. He never realized how toned her stomach was. The leggings she wore clung to her form and revealed the perfect shape of her bottom. Her normal work wear didn't do justice in showing how big her breast really were. Her sideways smirk, despite her using it to show off her overly confident attitude at times, and her beautiful cerulean eyes could turn any man to putty. He wondered how those muscular legs would feel wrapped around his waist as she cried his name in that smooth voice of hers.

What?

Mako shook his head in disbelief. No. He was just pining after Asami not even twenty four hours ago. He just found Korra attractive, that's all. You can't possibly fall for someone in a matter of minutes. Can you? But then again, isn't that what happened with Asami?

Blushing over the uncomfortable tightness in his pants, Mako swallowed the dry lump in his throat and decided he needed a cold shower when he got home. He turned the key in the ignition and sped off.

*break*

Even though Sunday's were Korra's special days to laze around all day, Asami texted her to get up off her lazy butt and meet her for brunch.

K: I'm busy

A: Laying in bed in your underwear while binge watching Shameless is not considered busy

K: That's your opinion. It takes a lot of time and energy to get in a whole season in one day.

A: Time: yes. Energy: I doubt that. Come on, Korra, have a girls day with me. pleeeeeease.

K: I have no money

A: I got you covered

K: I look a mess

A: Have you met me? Girl, I got you

K: I haven't done laundry I have nothing to wear

A: That's why I'm going to introduce you to my friend. First name, Platinum. Last name, Card.

K: ...

A: Korraaaa. Please please please please...

After texting "Please" about thirteen times, causing Korra's notifications to go off at an annoying rate. She growled and texted Asami to give her a half hour. So much for a day in.

*break*

Korra and Asami stepped into Daiwa's Breakfast Bar and Sushi around noon. Korra groaned at how crowded it was when they walked in. They would've gotten here sooner if they didn't shop for Korra's outfit, go to a spa and stop to get their make up and hair done. This is not the day Korra had planned for herself.

"It's so early..." Korra whined.

"It's only a quarter to noon." Asami countered.

"It's still considered morning and mornings are evil."

Korra shifted in the navy blue halter dress Asami purchased for her earlier that morning. The five inch leather blue jean strap wedges brought Korra to Asami's heights. Korra wasn't big on girly shoes but it sure beat wearing heels. Korra's hair was sleeked to a side ponytail and fell over her shoulders in wavy brown curls. The natural brown eye shadow accented her cerulean eyes and the maroon colored lipstick brought out her plump lips.

Even though Korra looked nice, she didn't think she looked nearly as good as Asami. Asami wore a dark red off the shoulder blouse and skinny jeans with tears in them, showing the shape of her long legs. Along with black flats with red bows in the front.

"Oh, shush." Asami whispered, "I have a surprise for you." Asami entwined her fingers with Korra's and led her to the back of the restaurant into a private room. Someone was already seated in the room. Korra knitted her eyebrows and looked at Asami before relaxing her face with a grin. The man stood up when he noticed the two ladies and opened his arms to Korra with a wide smile.

"Iroh!" Korra jumped in his arms, Iroh wrapping his strong arms around her torso and lifting her feet a couple inches off the ground."How...what...when did you get in?"

Iroh laughed and set Korra back on her feet. "Yesterday morning, in fact. I met up with Asami first."

Korra spun around to Asami, who hid her smile behind her hand," I met him at the docks yesterday. We wanted to surprise you. It's been a while since we all hung out together."

"Yeah," Iroh agreed. "Looking a little out of your element there, now aren't ya, Korra?" He was referring to her attire.

"I'm not sure if that's a compliment or not."

"Hey!" Asami came by to wrap her arm around Iroh as he lifted his arms to put around her shoulders. "She looks great! Tell her she looks great."

"Haha. You look great, Korra."

"Thank you." Korra smirked,"You don't look to bad yourself. Now let's order some food, the morning with Asami has me famished."

*break*

After brunch, Korra, Asami and Iroh made their way out of the restaurant still deep in conversation. They all spent the last two hours catching up after it'd had been a year since Korra last seen Iroh before he left with the military fleet and at least eight more since Asami seen him. Despite the long months of going without seeing each other, they acted as though they were never separated a single day. Korra figured it was hard to maintain such a relationship but they made it work somehow.

Not paying attention as they all turned the corner heading towards the market district, Korra almost knocked herself out running into a tall figure. A pair of pale hands wrapped around Korra's arms to hold her in place. Blue eyes met gold and Korra forgot how to breathe.

"Mako!" Asami squealed,"Hey, fancy running into you. What are you up to?"

Even though Asami was talking to him, he still held Korra's eyes with his own. She could feel her heart pounding in her chest and was sure he could feel it to from the way he had her flushed against his body. Her tongue darted out unconsciously to lick her parched lips. Mako pursed his lips to restrain a groan trapped n his throat.

"Mako?"

He snapped his eyes away from Korra's and looked over at Asami. "Oh, uh, hey...Asami. How's it going?"

"Fine," she answered with a confused look on her face only to shape her mouth in a 'O' before giving him a wide knowing smile at the way he held Korra. Maybe she really wasn't dense. "By the way this is Iroh, the boyfriend I've been telling you about."

Mako released Korra and extended a hand to Iroh and Iroh gripped it with more force than necessary. Iroh took in the amount of time Mako was holding on to Korra and didn't seem the least bit pleased by the young man's presence. "Nice to me you, Mako." The bite did not go unnoticed to the girls.

"Ugh..."he grimaced at the pain in his hand, "li-likewise." Mako pulled his hand back as fast he could and rubbed it with his other behind his back. "So what are you all up to?"

"We just finished having brunch." Asami resplied,"Iroh leaves in another two days and we wanted to get in some time with him."

"You look nice today, Korra." Mako blushed in her direction. Korra wasn't sure how to react towards his attentions and she felt the butterbees flutter in her stomach.

"Well she'll look even better tonight at the party I'm hosting for Iroh at my place." Asami chimed in.

"What?!" Iroh and Korra exclaimed.

"Yeah, you should come over, invite some friends too."

"But what about work?" Korra protested.

"Just take a a PTO day, both of you. I'm your boss, I have that kind of power." Asami grinned.

Iroh gave her a why are you inviting him look and weather Asami noticed or not she was already texting Mako her address. Once his phone notification made it clear to Asami he received it, she grabbed Iroh and pulled him in the opposite direction they were originally heading. "See you both tonight." She waved. Iroh turned his head and gave Mako a glare clarifying his distaste in leaving Korra alone with him.

Once the couple disappeared in the crowd, Mako was the first to speak after the awkward encounter,"So..." he started nervously,"are you busy at the moment?"

Korra shrugged,"Not really."

"You were heading to the market district, weren't you? Care if I join?"

Korra smiled, "Sure."

He placed his hand on the small of her back and she was sure she was going to faint. Korra's never been around a guy like this before. In high school she dated a few watertribe boys, none either lasted long or continued after sex. Korra hadn't dated since high school let alone had sex. That was four years ago. What twenty two year old missed out on sex?
But between arguing and tiny bits of flirting, Mako brought out a primal side of Korra she hadn't felt in a very long time.

They both looked around the market, the different styles of jewelry and nic nacks clinging around vendors tents. The smell of food from different nations floating in the air.
Mako didn't bother to remove his hand from her back and lead her to all the different vendors. He held a silver and turquoise gem encrusted necklace to her neck when they stopped at a water tribe jewelry stand. Different chains hung from the necklace with carved silver feathers hanging from them.

"I've always liked tribal jewelry on a woman." Mako admitted.

"Oh, really." Korra removed the necklace from in front of her and pushed it further into Makos hands "well what about the tribal woman herself?"

Mako set the necklace back on the mannequin and leaned over Korra,"Just the one in front of me."

Korra's mouth opened and closed like a fish. That was smooth. She would give him that.

He laughed at her reaction and grabbed her hand leading her to the next stand. After leading her around and even sharing shaved ice mixed with blue raspberry and cherry, Mako offered to walk her to her car. Korra was reluctant but allowed him to do so. After unlocking the driver door she turned to Mako,"Um, thanks for hanging out with me."

"My pleasure." He smirked,"Although I would like to do this again, only next time you'll let me pay."

"Why, Director Mako, are you asking me on a date?" She teased.

His lips parted and his eyes glazed over with something Korra thought was familiar,"And would you say no if I did?"

"No!" She exclaimed, surprising herself,"No, I mean yes...not yes as in no but...ugh..." she brought both her hands to her head," Yes, as in I'll go on a date-thing-activity...with you..."

"Good," he took her hand and rubbed his thumb over her knuckles," I'll see you at Asami's tonight."

"Yeah." Korra exhaled, not realizing she was holding her breath when he touched her. Mako slipped his hand away and left.

*break*

Korra arrived at Asami's apartment at the top of Sato Luxury Apartments in downtown Republic City about a quarter to nine. She was wearing strapless black tube too with silver and glitter tribal designs and a pair of dark blue skinny jeans. The black heel suede boots she wore clinked against the marble floor of the hallway leading to Asami's apartment door, her hair swinging in her high ponytail.

Korra was getting ready to open the door when Iroh swung it opened, letting the music escape out the door. Arms open wide, he greeted Korra with a big smile,"Your early! Come on in."

Korra stepped inside in time to see Asami descend down from her spiral staircase and putting her earrings in. "Korra. Glad you can make it."

"Did I have a choice?" Korra went to hand Asami a bottle of fire ice.

"You make it sound like I forced you." Asami grinned. Korra shrugged and followed her friend into the kitchen where platters of food scattered around the island. Asami had a gorgeous apartment. The modern design reflected the extreme luxury that came with being an heiress. "So, you and Mako..." Asami leaned over the counter and placed a cheese cube in her mouth with a sly smirk.

"What about me and Mako." Korra stammered.

Asami leaned up in tilted her head,"Honestly I thought the guy was going to suffocate me with his advances the whole time he worked at the company, but the way he eyed you like the piece of chocolate candy you are earlier today, I was wrong.

Korra blushed as she bit the corner of her bottom lip and smiled, "He asked me out." She whispered.

Asami squealed, causing Korra to jump, almost spilling the drink she poured into a flute. "You said yes, right?"

Korra nodded quickly.

"Said yes to what?" Iroh asked as he came in behind Asami to wrap his arms around her.

"Nothing." Asami laid her hands over his and then the door bell rang,"Oh, baby, can you get that?"

He removed his hands and mumbled something about getting answers when he came back. Asami gave Korra an apologetic look. When they heard Iroh ushering people inside, there was a voice Korra definitely recognized.

"Why is that the most beautiful watertribe girl in the world, Miss Korra?"

Korra smiled wide and turned in the direction of the voice,"Why, yes, Sir Bolin. Although I can't say the same for you."

"Well, good thing I'm not a water tribe girl." Bolin came to Korra's side to kiss her cheek with Seda behind him.

"Seda, you made it out too!"

"Yeah, granddad gave me a break tonight." She said, going in to hug Korra. When they parted she looked up to see Mako with a bottle of Fire Whiskey in his hand. His smile, knowing and his eyes looking over her form. Goodness, he was hot.

"Hi." He greeted, setting the fire whiskey on the island.

"Hi." Korra smirked.

They stared at each other for what felt like a decade before Bolin interrupted. "Geez, get a room, you two!"

Korra and Mako quickly averted their eyes.

About an hour after Bolin Mako and Seda arrived, the apartment was packed. Old friends and new friends mingling and wishing Iroh luck. The party became suffocating when Korra was being pulled in different directions to greet and chat with the other guests. She would look for Mako in the crowd and always found him looking at her. He would blush and turn his head away every time and she found it adorable.

At about one am when it all became overbearing, Korra snuck outside into the balcony. The summer breeze kissing her cheeks, easing the redness in her cheeks from the alcohol she had consumed throughout the night. She closed her eyes and listened to the sounds of the city streets below. The door to the balcony opened and Korra expected Asami or Iroh to come out in order to drag her back inside.

Her eyes widened when she realized it was Mako instead. He quietly closed the door behind him, eyes trained on her as she took him in as well. She could feel her heart raceloud enough it drummed in her ears. They stood, staring at each other for only moments before Mako strode over to grab Korra's arms and wrapped them around his neck. He bent over her, their noses nearly touching. Leaning down, he pressed his chest against hers and captured Korra's lips.

Chapter Text

The fog was so thick, making it impossible for Korra to see straight. Why couldn't she breathe? Where was that ringing coming from? She didn't know where she was and how it got dark. But whet she thought was fog turned out to be smoke. Where was that smoke coming? The smell of burning metal reached Korra's senses and her eyes widened in alert.

Fire! It was a fire!

No wonder she couldn't breathe. She tried to cough but her throat wouldn't constrict in order to relieve the weight in her lungs. She then forced her heavy muscles to move, only to realize she was stuck. She used her arms to push as hard as she could but the cracking of bones made her look down at lap. Her waist was stuck. Between what? She couldn't process the current situation, let alone remember.

"Help!" She tried to scream but she couldn't get her voice to work.

"Help!" She managed to croak. Her eyes watered as smoke clouded her lungs. The pain in hers hips became intense as her vision whirled and then slowly started to settled.

"Please!" She sobbed, the smoke becoming thicker. Her heart rate slowed down as her body began to feel like an anchor was pulling her under.

"Please! Mom! Dad! I just want to go home!" She screamed in her head. And as the smoke began to cloud over her and she felt the thump of her heartbeat slowing down drumming in her ears, everything went black.

*break*

Korra bolted upright from her side of the bed, trying to catch her breath. She started to shake and hyperventilate. The pressure on her hips were so excruciatingly painful, it felt as though her bones had shattered. Well, almost. She moved the blanket off her naked body and shakingly limped into the bathroom and closed te door behind her. It was hot and she was so sick to her stomach , she thought she was going to vomit.

She fell on the tile floor before she could make it to the toilet. All of last nights dinner from her date with Mako emptied out of her stomach. When she managed out gag out what was left in her stomach, she realized she completely missed the toilet. She grabbed a towel hanging above the toilet and began to clean up the mess in a panic, sweat misting over her brow. How embarrassing. After cleaning up, she turned on the bathroom sink to rinse the vomit off the towel and threw it in the hamper. She lifted her head to look in the mirror. She looked awful. Dark circles under her eyes, sweat soaked hair stuck to her face and she looked paler than normal.

She splashed ice cold water on her face and took a swig of mouth wash she found on the bathroom counter. Swishing the liquid in her mouth and spitting it out, she still felt unclean. She grabbed the bar of soap sitting in the soup dish and frantically started rubbing her hands. Korra swallowed a dry lump in her throats and started rubbing her hands more aggressively with the soup. Korra hissed when she knicked her thumb with her nail,"Spirits, dammit." She brought her thumb to her mouth to stop the bleeding.

A gentle knock on the bathroom door made her jump and she quickly turn off the water. "Korra, are you okay?" Mako's voice muffled from the other side.

Korra cleared her throat and wiped the sweat drenched hair from her face,"Um, I'm fine, just had to use the bathroom."

"Oh...okay."

She knew she sounded phony considering they've been dating the past five months, and Korra had no shame using the toilet in front of him. She was at his place more than she was at her own.

"Well come back to bed soon, baby."

"I-I will. Just cleaning up a bit." She stammered. Korra patted the water and sweat off her face with her hands and opened the bathroom door. Mako sat on his side of the bed in only his maroon boxers and watched Korra head to her side. She picked up the blue tee Mako had took off her and thrown on the floor the night before and put it back on. She bent down on the floor next to the bed to check her phone. It was half past four. Korra groaned and fell into the bed face first, her tee riding up her torso.

"You sure you're okay, Korra?"

"I'm fine." Her voice muffled by a pillow, she turned to face him and gave him a weak smile,"I'm more than awake at this point."

Mako scooted to her side and placed a hand on her exposed back. "I can help put you back to sleep." He spoke in a sultry tone.

Korra blushed and turned on her back as Mako laid next to her and pressed his erection against her thigh. She closed her eyes when he rained kisses from her chin to her neck.

*break*

"Well someone looks like they had a long night." Asami walked out of her office and sat on the edge of Korra's desk," Must've been interesting," Asami rubbed her fingers on her chin.

"Uuuhhh..." Was all Korra could manage to respond. Although having sex twice in one night was indeed, interesting, the nightmares have gotten worse over the last couple weeks. There was an Equalist rally not too far from Korra's apartment and a baritone voice echoed through the streets that night. The crowds were loud and vicious and as the sound of broken glass and screaming got closer to Korra's complex, she held her hands over her ears and pinched her eyes shut in order to try and get some sleep. The next morning, she walked out into the parking lot to find her car windshield busted in by a trash can. Korra shook with fury until she felt her heart speed up and her mind stray to memories she thought she locked away in the back of her mind for good. Korra rushed back to her home and locked the door, diving into her bed and sobbing. She called into work the next couple days and refused to allow anyone to come visit.

She never told Mako of any of this. As much as she wanted to, it just wouldn't come out. As though some quiet force was snatching the words back into her mouth. Asami knew bits and pieces and Iroh was the only one to know the full story, considering he was in her life at that time but he didn't know how deep it impacted her. She chose to let it simmer inside. Who wants to hear about something so trivial? She figured it was best she moved on as quickly as possible.

When she managed to get her mind on track, she jumped back into her life as though the last two days didn't happen. But the nightmares never stopped.

"..." Asami hummed, "To be honest, you don't look too good. Are you sure you don't want to take the rest of the day off? I can drive you home so you won't have to take the bus."
Korra shook her head," I'm fine. I can get through the day. Besides the bus isn't so bad and my car should be repaired by tomorrow, if not, in a couple days."

Korra didn't bother to look at Asami the whole time she spoke. Asami huffed and gently rubbed Korra's hand when the ringing sound from the elevator signaled the doors opening. Hiroshi Sato stepped in with his back straight and a scrowl so tight, Korra thought his face would get stuck like that.

"Dad!" Asami went to give her dad a hug," What are you doing here? I thought you were still in the Earth Kingdom on business."

"I got in early. It didn't take much for us to get the deal. So, prepare to take on some more work." He winked.

Asami's smile brightened, "You got it, Dad."

"Good morning, Mr. Sato." Korra greeted.

"Yes. I suppose it is." He scoffed, not even bother to look at her. Korra silently mimicked his response with a funny face. "So, are you free to join me for a long lunch? There is much we need to discuss."

"Yeah. Let me grab my purse. Korra, don't expect me for the rest of the afternoon."

"Yes, Miss Sato." Korra nodded. When the elevator doors closed, Korra leaned back in her chair and rubbed her temples. She turned her wrist. 11:02. It doesn't hurt to take an early lunch. She actually wanted to go out for a couple of hours to shop for Mako's birthday gift. She texted Seda to see if she was available to still meet up with Korra. After a few moments of waiting Seda texted her the name of the tea house she was willing to meet her at.

The Jasmine Dragon? I thought that went out of business years ago.

Korra mentally shrugged and grabbed her purse to leave.

*break*

"Korra!" Seda was waving her down at a table in the corner of the tea shop by the front window. The smell of jasmine tea was comforting and Korra's mouth mentally watered when she seen the various pastries adorned on a pastry tray set on their table. She never stepped foot in this place but, man, she's glad she did today.

"Wow, nice place you picked out here, Seda." Korra whistled, she couldn't help but look around in awe. The place was decorated with Red lanterns and Fire Nation tapestries and large paintings. The gentle sound of the sugi horn keeping the atmosphere at ease.

"I took the liberty of ordering our tea before you got here, if you don't mind. It's the best you'll ever have, I promise."

 

"Cool."
"So any ideas of what to get Mako for his birthday?" Seda asked as the waiter came to their table to place the tea in front of them. The smell was soothing and the tea was a dark gold with a slice of orange floating in it. It smelled sweet.

"Somewhat. I was thinking of getting him a gift card or maybe tickets to the fighting arena? I know he'd be happy with either or."

Seda snorted, "Really, Korra? A gift card?"

"Well, what's wrong with that?!" Korra narrowed her eyes at Seda and sipped her tea. My spirits, that's amazing.

"For starters, that's something typical you'd give to a family member or close friend but not your new boyfriend."

"New? We've been together fives months."

"Baby steps, Korra." Seda rolled her eyes, "Baby steps."

"Then what do you suggest, hmm?"

"You wanna know what I got Bolin for his birthday?"

"Something tells me I'll regret the answer to that question."

Seda reached into her purse and pulled out a magazine with a lingerie model wearing a pink laced one piece with a pink garter belt and black open toed heels and tossed it on the table in front of Korra.

"Yup, I definitely regret the answer. You can't be serious."

"Oh come on, you buy him those silly tickets to that fighting arena. Take him home and then give him his dessert." Seda grinned, wiggling her eyebrows.

"No." Korra slid the magazine back to Seda.

"Yes." Seda slid it back,"It's perfect. Men love to be seduced by the woman they love. I should know. Bolin goes wild every time I do."

Korra cringed at the idea of Bolin going 'wild', "First of all, ew. Second of all, I don't know the first thing about seducing anyone, so that's out of the question."

"Okay, at least tell me your idea of seducing a guy."

"I don't know," Korra groaned," when I think about what being seductive is, I think wearing nothing while lying on the bed with a rose in your mouth."

A snicker caused both Seda and Korra to turn to the table behind them. The man sitting directly behind Korra shoulders were shaking.

"Excuse me," Korra asked not so politely, "Can we help you."

The man that laughed at her turned around in his chair and chuckled, his ice blue eyes almost caught Korra off guard. He bore into hers with a slight smirk on his face and his eyes twinkled with amusement," I apologize, young lady, I did not mean to eavesdrop on you and your friend's conversation." His baritone voice vibrated through Korra's body.

"I'm not talking about you eavesdropping, I would like to know what's so funny about what I just said." she retorted, jaw clenched.

"Again, my apologies, but if you don't mind, and I promise I don't go around offering advice such as this to random strangers, I could give you some tips on how to seduce your boyfriend."

"Really?" Korra blushed with a frown, "Well I do mind!" Kora shifted noisily in her seat mumbling and angrily flipped the magazine open.

"Water tribe lingerie are always the best choice. There's nothing a man loves more than a woman in exotic attire especially one who is exotic herself." The man whispered low into her ear from behind her.

Korra swung back around in time to watch the blue eyed gentleman head to the register to pay for his tea. He looked back at Korra with a crooked smirk and Korra noticed how tall and built he was. His slicked back hair and sideburns gave his handsome face a mature and wise look. From the looks of it, he was either water tribe or water tribe descent but he was paler than most men in the poles. Waving at them, the man exited the tea shop.

Korra was speechless. Who the hell did he think he was? Stupid old man.

"Wow," Seda started, Korra noticed she too was blushing, "that was...something...But he's right you know."

Korra's shoulders slumped and she huffed,"I'll think about it." Korra fisted a cucumber sandwich and stuffed it in her mouth.

*break*

Korra and Seda decided that lingerie would probably be a good present, they stopped at a local lingerie shop. After Seda ran Korra around the whole store and tried to get her to try on some over the top sexy lingerie, from feathers to leather base, Korra left the shop purchasing a simple navy blue laced teddy. Seda complained how plain it was but Korra didn't care.

The next evening Korra dressed herself in a black tube top dress Asami let her borrow. Asami did her makeup at the office. Dark blue eyeshadow glittered on her lids, with pinkish brown blush slightly accenting her cheek bones and maroon lipstick painted on her lips. Korra smiled because she knew how much Mako loved the color on her. There was a knock at the door and Korra slipped on her black suade heels and went to open the door.

Mako stood at the door with his hands in his pockets. he dressed in a white collared shirt that had its sleeves rolled up to his elbows and a red and black buttoned vest and dark blue jeans. "Ready to go?" he asked, offering his arm.

"You bet." Korra grinned and linked her arm in his. "Happy birthday!" Mako kissed her chastely on the lips. They took the elevator to the parking lot and Mako opened the car door for Korra and got in the drivers seat to head to the arena hosting the fighting event Korra purchased tickets for.

The grin on Mako's face was bigger than normal, Korra couldn't help but wonder what he was thinking, "Something on your mind, birthday boy?"

"Yup. It's great news, so I'll tell you after our night out."

Korra nodded but for some reason what he said made her feel a hole at the pit of her stomach.

They parked in the arena garage and Mako quickly jumped out and jogged to Korra's door to open it, her eyebrows knitted at his actions. He seemed awfully chipper.

They walked into the arena's lobby and both their eyes widened in awe. The place was extravagant. The ceiling lit up with many of bright lights, the floor was paved with white and gold marble and red carpet floors led from the extended stairs to the inner arena where the fight would be held.

"Korra," Mako gasped, "I can't believe you managed to get tickets to such a place. The fight hasn't even started and I feel like this is the best birthday present I ever had."
So far, Korra thought.

He squeezed her hand and turned her cheek to face him, "All this excitement is so much, I can't hold it in any longer." He took a deep breathe and shut his eyes,"i don't know where to begin or how to say this..." he opened his eyes and smiled at Korra," I got good news. A job offer!"

"Oh," Korra tilted her head. He was looking for another job? "I'm happy for you, Mako."

"Well," he scratched the back of his head," It's not just any job. It was a snap decision or else they would've offered someone else the job. It was an opening for a position as a COO for this cooperation my Dad worked for around the time he met my mom and before they both moved here to Republic City. I honestly didn't think I had a chance in hell but when they called me, it was everything I could ever dream of. They knew my parents and they want me to start as soon as possible."

"Well that's more than good news, Mako. That's amazing!" Korra was aware of the struggle Mako and Bolin went through in their childhood growing up in the strrets after losing both their parents. The fact that Mako worked blood, sweat and tears to help get him and his brother out of poverty tugged at Korra's heart strings. But this was propably bigger than either of them ever imagined.

"In fact," he sighed," It's...in the Fire Nation."

Korra's eyebrows shot up, "What?!" The Fire Nation! "The Fire Nation?!" Korra slipped her hand from his, "So what does that mean for us?"

Mako's eyes widened and then averted away from her. So that's how it was going to be.

Korra stormed out the building ignoring Mako calling out her name. She slammed the entrance door open and jogged across the parking lot towards the nearest bus stop.

"Korra, wait!"

"No!" she yelled over her shoulder and picked up her pace.

"Please, Korra, lets talk this out."

"What!" she swung around to face him. He came to an abrupt stop not expecting her to turn around so soon, "What do you possibly have to say to me at this point? 'Oh Korra, I love you, but I think we're heading in different directions'?"

He stood silent and looked down at his feet. She huffed at how his reaction confessed it all, "Fuck you, Mako!"

He grabbed her by the wrist and opened his mouth to say something when an explosion interrupted him and stone and debris fell from the sky. Mako pulled Korra towards him and hunched them both over to cover her from the falling rubble and smoke. When the sound of the explosion passed and was replaced by sirens and the crackle of flames, Mako looked down at Korra as she held her hands over her ears and rocked backed and forth with her eyes shut as tight as she could.

Chapter Text

Asami paced back and forth in Korra's apartment, having arrived only hours ago. After hearing about the explosion at Republic City's Arena on the news and knowing Korra and Mako were there that night, she jumped into her car and drove straight to Korra's without stopping. Running every stop light and nearly colliding with two other vehicles along the way. She had tried calling and texting Korra's phone numerous times with no answer, and when Asami couldn't sit down any longer she left for Korra's place as fast as she could, hoping with all her might she somehow made it home.

Unfortunately when Asami walked through the front door of Korra's one bedroom apartment using the spare key she was given months ago, it was pitch black. Asami felt her heart drop into her stomach. A pair of large white furred paws pushed up against Asami's shoulders, nearly knocking her into the coat rack next to the apartment door. Asami managed to catch her balance in time as well as Naga on her hind legs. The large dog made sure to give Asami a sloppy wet lick to the face.

"Okay, girl. Down. Down!"

Naga whined and got back down on all fours, wagging her tail and trailing behind Asami who walked into the living room to turn on the lamp. Her phone's text notification set off and Asami grabbed it from out of her pocket in hopes it was from Korra. It was Iroh, letting her know he too was calling Korra consistently with no answer. Asami called him not long after her insane attempts to get a hold of Korra.

She turned the news on the tv, there were barely any updates. Many were injured but so far the casualties were small. Asami couldn't help but sit on egde, hand over her mouth and her knee bouncing frantically as she held tight to her phone. Tears forming in her ears.

For spirits sake, Korra, please, please be okay.

*break*

Time seemed to run in slow motion as the paramedics and police scattered around the crumbled building that once was a part of the arena. People crying out in pain, screaming for loved ones and being carried away by medics. Fire fighters trying to keep the flames from the explosion at bay as several groups of civilians did the best they could to get anyone they could find any help.

Although Korra wanted to crawl behind a rock and hide from the commotion, she was not one to sit around when people werein need of help. She threw her heels aside not caring where they landed and lifted heavy building rubble and debris in order to help free people trapped underneath it. She tore her dress and ended up with cuts and scratches all over her body. Being as kind natured as Korra, Mako went out to help as many people as he could on the other side of the building where the explosion occurred. Korra didn't bother to look at him let alone speak when he told her where he would be at. All she wanted to do was get these people out of here as soon as possible.

When Korra started to dig yet another person out of a pile, she noticed the arm peeking out was awfully limp. She pushed with all her strength to quickly relieve the body from the crushing weight. But as she removed the last piece, the face becoming visible, she sobbed in defeat. Even before checking the pulse on his neck, she knew. He was already gone. Korra sighed and slowly removed her hand to bring to her side.

"Daddy?" The sob of a little girl came from behind Korra,"Daddy?! Daddy!"

Korra's heart sunk.

"No. No! Chin!" A woman with black hair pulled back in a what used to be a tight bun, covered in dust and stray hair strands around her face, she ran up behind the little girl. Her dark red and black evening gown and jewelry proved that this woman indeed came from money and the little girl she pulled in her arms sobbed into her mother's dress. Her pigtails covering the rest of her pale freckled face.

Korra felt like a million pins stabbed into her nerves, causing her muscles to go stiff. A team of medics ran to where Korra stood and gathered the man into a stretcher. They took off, Mother and daughter following close behind. Korra watched after them, the realization of what was really going on around her brought the tears she held back the whole time spill down her cheeks.

No one deserved this. Nobody.

She rubbed the tears away with her hands, streaking dirt across her cheeks. Gathering her emotions, she turned to head over where another group of people were moving rubble, seeing what other help she could offer.

*break*

Asami stirred as she heard the front door of the apartment creak. She slipped into an uncomfortable sleep on Korra's couch without realizing it, her hand resting over it onto Naga's large head. She wasn't sure how long or when she even fell asleep. Looking around the softly lit room, realizing the sun was breaking, she saw the figure of Korra's body drag itself into the living room. When her vision became focused, she kicked her legs over the couch.

"Korra! Oh my spirits, your okay!" Asami brought Korra into a hug. Squeezing her tight, afraid she might not be real.

Korra hesitantly brought her arms around Asami's waist. They stayed like that, silent for a few moments.

The silence was unbearable after a while and Asami released herself from the hug and grabbed Korra's face with both her hands. She looked over the dust and dry blood from cuts plastered on her face. The dress she let her borrow was torn on the side all the way up to her underwear along with small tears all around the front and back. Her knees and elbows were scrapped and caked with dry blood as well and she was completely barefoot.

Asami hissed and grabbed Korra by the hand and lead her into the bathroom. She didn't ask what happened. She could see the far off stare in Korra's eyes and knew she needed time. Being tired as well, Asami muscles flinched from soreness as she turned on the shower and stripped Korra down to nothing. She gently helped Korra step into the tub, seeing the water turn red as it hit her flesh. She gently scrubbed the caked on dirt and blood off of Korra's body. She had dark circles around her lids and her blue eyes were dark with absence.

Once Asami managed to get Korra cleaned, dry and dressed into a night shirt and shorts, she wrapped Korra's arm around her shoulder with her hand on her waist and took her to the bed to tuck her in. Placing a kiss on her forehead and leaving the room with the light off and door closed. But Korra couldn't sleep.

*break*
Korra walked out of her bedroom around four in the afternoon. After hours of laying still in bed looking at the ceiling, she finally fell asleep. Even though she managed to get in some sleep, the nightmares made it unsatisfactory and she still felt like shit. She didn't want to think of the night before, but it stuck to her mind like glue and she groaned in distaste. Especially at the thoughts of what happened after Korra and Mako left the Arena as the sky lit up behind the clouds signaling the sun rising.

She, at first, flat out refused to allow him to take her home. But after arguing for twenty minutes and Mako saying he wasn't going to leave her side until he seen her safely go into her home himself, she reluctantly agreed to let him drive her home. She would've called Asami to come get her, but she lost her purse holding her wallet and cell somewhere among the rubble.

She kept her lips pursed and didn't look his way, no matter how many times he asked if she was okay. He wasn't worth her breath. When he stopped in front of her apartment building entrance, he turned off the ignition. "Really, are you okay?"

Silence.

"Korra, I love you, you know that."

The confession made her scoff and she moved her head to look him dead in the eye.

"I know last night's explosion isn't the only reason you're acting like this. Korra, this is impotant to me and-"

"Is this really the time to be discussing this." Korra snapped, interrupting him.

"Then, when?" he snapped back," When your not in one of your pissy moods? Cause if that' the case, I suppose I'll be waiting a long time."

"So, what? This is about me now?"

"No! That's the thing, this isn't about you! You know the effort I put into getting where I am now. I thought you out of all people would get that!"

"I do get it, Mako. Believe me! But if this is what you were aiming for, why bother to date me? Was I just a good fuck up until you were ready to move up in life?"

"For spirits sake, no, Korra. I, in no way, expected things to fall into place like this but I can't give that up after only being with you for five. Five months!"

The only sound at this point was the sound of Mako's panting.

"I would do anything I could for you, Korra, you mean that much to me." He started," But aside from this job offer, our relationship has begun to falter. I know there's something going on with you, Korra, that you refuse to tell me."

Her mouth dropped. She didn't know he was suspicious of how she's been acting the past few weeks.

"Whatever it is, you won't tell me and I can't wait around until your good and ready. I need this. I only hope you look past this and move on. Please understand, I never meant to hurt you. Especially not like this." With that he unlocked the doors without looking at her. Korra sat with her mouth agape, averting her eyes from Mako to the dashboard, then turned them to the door handle. She quietly stepped out the car and onto the sidewalk in front of her apartment building. She heard the screeching of Mako's tires on the pavement as he drove off.

She slowly made her way to the elevator and onto the floor of the hallway leading to her home. Once she made her way in front of her door, she leaned her forehead against it and cried.

Korra swallowed the lump in her throat and headed towards the kitchen where she seen Asami cooking breakfast and making tea.

"Oh, Korra, your awake. You didn't have much to cook with so I made omurice and chamomile tea with what you had. You get enough sleep?"

"..." Korra groaned.

"You know, you don't have to talk about it but I'm here for you Korra. Whenever your ready."

Although Korra felt less than ready, the words spilled out of her mouth like vomit, "Mako broke up with me." The sound of loud clanking made Korra look at the pan and omurice on the floor, Damn. What a waste.

"He what?!" she screeched, "Right after all that happened last night? That son of a bitch!" Korra could see her teeth gritting.

Korra shook her head, "No, it was before that. We were arguing about some job offer he got in the Fire Nation and how it wasn't going to work with us at that point. After that was when the building came down, luckily we were outside. But afterwards he drove me home and made it clear he didn't want to be with me weather he got the job or not."

"Oh, Korra." Asami walked over to squeeze her into a hug. Korra gulped a large lump from her throat. "Want me to have Iroh kick his ass? He's been waiting forever to do it?" Korra laughed in spite of herself.

Asami's phone went off in the living room and excused herself to answer it. From what Korra could hear in the kitchen it sounded like Iroh was on the other line, being assured that Korra was home safely and needed time before she talked to anyone else. Shit, I gotta call my parents, Korra thought. Asami came back to the kitchen and hung up the call. From what Asami was telling her, Iroh was heading back with the rest of the military fleet to help with the rest of the disaster. He promised to stop by in a couple of days.

They sipped their tea and had to share the first omurice Asami cooked because the second was being eaten off the floor by Naga and there was nothing else to make. Once they finished and Asami cleaned up after them, Korra went to use the bathroom, realizing she had been holding it in since she got up. After relieving herself, she turned on the faucet to wash cool water over her face. She turned off the faucet and settled her sights on the reflection in the mirror.

Staring into her own blue eyes, every event in Korra's life came crashing down at once. From the moment her hip bones shattered after the car crash, preventing her from ever continuing to build a professional fighting career, to the time her and her father drifted apart, to the time the explosion happened, to the harsh break up she had with Mako. It all weighed down on her like the rubble that came crashing down to earth at the arena, and she couldn't help but heave a dry sob. She grabbed a pair of scissors from her bathroom counter drawer and grabbed a chunck of her hair. Snip. The sound was so relieving, her chest moved up and down in time with her panting. Snip Snip. She hacked away at her hair with no regard of styling it.

Once she was halfway through her head and made gesture to cut another chuck of hair, a gasp made her stop.

"Korra. What the hell are you doing?!" Asami said.

Korra couldn't hold it back anymore. She cried. She cried as loud and as hard as she could. And it felt so good. Asami took the scissors from Korra's placing it on the sink and brought her head to her chest rocking her back and forth as Korra let it all out. Korra hated ugly crying but right now she gave no fucks. She cried for the career she thought she would have, she cried for the relationship she once had with her dad, she cried for the man she discovered dead as well as for his wife and daughter, and she cried for her break up with Mako. But most of all, she cried for herself.

Once her cries became hiccups and sobs, Asami grabbed the scissors again and began cutting the rest of Korra's hair. She'll have to take her to a salon sometime to properly fix it.
Asami took Korra into the bedroom and laid beside her in bed, spooning her and gently running her fingers through her hair. Asami felt a tear run down her cheek, she hurt for Korra. When Korra's sobbing turned to loud snores, Asami cringed at the annoying noise but she hoped her friend would finally get the sleep she deserved.

Chapter Text

The streets were filled with more police officers than normal since the explosion at the arena several weeks ago. They managed to find several bombs around the premises. One in a janitors closet by the main entrance, another under the stage and one outside a fire exit on the side of the building. There were no witnesses or possible suspects. The only clue they had was the kanji spray painted in red on the pavement near the fire exit door where the third bomb set off. Once the rest of what was left of the fallen building was removed, they finally managed to get a good look at what was written. "Equality."

The press had a field day. The Red Circle Equalist were becoming more violent. After weeks of being on hiatus, they emerged again with a lot more force. The newspapers blame the council and city law enforcements for their incapabilities to handle the Equalist. Although only twelve people died, the bombing still left the residences of Republic City in fear enough to hardly stray from home or move out of the city.

Councilman Tarrlok, a representative for the Northern Water Tribe and chairman of the other four members, assured everyone that the Equalist would not get away with this and that Tarrlok himself had assembled a task force that would bring down Amon and his Equalist for good.

*break*

Asami turned off the tv. Listening to Tarrlok's voice was irritating. She unfortunately had had the pleasure of being introduced to him two years ago at a gala not long after she graduated with her masters. He was just as stuck up and conceded as he is now. Plus he smelled like a woman.

A knock at the door interrupted Asami's thoughts and she got off Korra's couch to answer it. Iroh stepped inside and slipped his fingers into her hair and brought her head up to smash his lips against hers. Asami's eyes widened then relaxed as they molded their mouths together. When they separated to catch their breaths, he grinned and she slid her hands from his waist to his buttocks and gave them a good squeeze.

"I've missed you." She smiled.

"I've missed you too, baby." He wrapped his strong arms around her shoulders and flushed her body against his. Well someone was in the mood. "Korra up yet?"

"No, she's being stubborn as usual. Wanna give it a shot?"

"I don't know, I kind of wanna see what else you can do after squeezing my ass."

"Woah, there, Handsome." She chuckled, "Its going to have to be another time. I gotta head home to get dressed and meet dad for dinner with some investors."

He pouted. "Well it's cool, I'll pull Korra out of bed."

"Thanks." She stood up on her toes to give him a chaste kiss. "I love you."

"Love you too. I'll meet you at your place tonight." He winked.

"You bet."

Iroh watched the front door close then headed to Korra's bedroom. He cracked the door open and adjusted his eyes around the dark room. The dark blue curtains were closed and Korra laid in the bed on her stomach with a foot sticking out and the comforter heaped on top of her. He snuck up behind her trying to hold back a grin and ran his index finger on the sole of the foot. Her foot quickly shot into the comforter and she groaned. He snickered and pulled the comforter up a bit to reach for her foot again.

"Stoooooop." She groaned.

"Come on, Korra, time to get up." He let out a light laugh and went to open the bedroom curtains.

Silence.

"Korra..."

"Nooooooo..."

"Korra, get up, seriously."

"Go...away..."

He groaned and reached inside the blanket grabbing her ankle and sliding her to the edge of the bed.

"Whyyyyyyyyyy?" She whined, "I just want to sleep." She got on her hands and knees and crawled back up the bed.

"Its six pm, Korra, come on. You can't sleep forever."

"You know, between you and Asami, I hear that so often I'm starting to think it's a challenge."

Grinning like a little kid, he jumped into her bed knocking her body a few inches into the air. He grabbed her shoulders and started shaking her aggressively.

"Okay. OKAY! I'm up! Sheesh!"

"Bout time." Iroh flung his legs over the bed and bounced off it, shaking the it again and causing Korra to complain some more.

She sat up, bed hair clinging to the side of her face, and rubbed her eyes. The light from the window caused her to hiss. Iroh dug through the dresser draw to see what he could find for her to wear for the night. He came across something in her sock draw and whistled. "Well, well, who knew Korra had a secret passion."

Korra whipped her head around and got up to stand on her bed. She frowned when she seen what he was referring to. "It's a handheld massager, you perv. I don't do stuff like that."

He rolled his eye," Psst, no wonder your cranky."

"What was that?!"

"Nothing." He shut the draw back up.

"You got me up, so I'm up. What do you want?"

"We're getting booze and drinking on the roof. I invited Bolin and his girlfriend. You need to surround yourself with friends."

Korra slumped her body over in defeat. She knew Iroh wouldn't leave her be, she definitely knew she was cornered when it also involved Bolin or Seda. Thinking of Bolin made her have a slight flashback about Mako. But she quickly pushed it out of her mind. "When?"

"About twenty. The liquor store isn't far from your place, so we'll just walk."

Korra stood up from the bed and stretched her arms in the air, "Well, get out so I can get dressed. I'm a big girl, you don't need to find clothes for me."

Iroh nodded his head and left the room with the door closed behind him. Korra grabbed a long sleeve shirt and skinny jeans. She went to the vanity Asami bought her last winter solstice and brushed her hair. She liked the short cut. After hacking it, the next day, Asami dragged her to a salon where they fixed the mess she made, giving her a cute bob. Asami said it showed off her slender neck, and men go crazy over that stuff. Korra rolled her eyes. She felt she was done with men for a very long time.

She left the room, brushed her teeth and put on some deodorant after she sniffed her armpits and stuck her tongue out in a mock gag. She left the bathroom in time to see Bolin and Seda sitting on her couch while Iroh relaxed in her recliner with his hands behind his head chatting with them. Korra fiddled with the heam of her shirt as she approached them all.

"Korra." Bolin's face lit up, "It's about time, I thought you were going to become some sort of night demon the way you've been barricading yourself in your room."

Korra locked her knee and put her hand on her hip, "Demons just don't come only at night, Bo."

Bolin made a wide grin and pinched her cheeks molding funny looks on her face. Korra laughed out loud. She missed her friends. It had been two weeks since the incident, and she was glad to be surrounded by friends despite her earlier reluctance.

"Ready to get some booze?" Seda interrupted, coming from behind Bolin to give Korra a hug.

"Yeah. That sounds so good right now." Korra answered.

"Haha, let's go then, party girl." Bolin wrapped arms around both ladies, "Damn, I sure look fine between two gorgeous ladies." Korra jabbed him in the side and walked away laughing.

*break*

They sat on the roof of Korra's apartment building, sipping out of a bottle of fire whiskey they shared amongst the four of them. Korra forgot how beautiful Republic City looked at night. The last time she took in it was the first week she had moved to the city. She wrapped her hoodie tighter around her body, the alcohol making her cheeks hot against the cool air of the beginning of winter. She couldn't wait for the snow to fall.

Korra swung the bottle up to take a gulp of the hot liquid and passed it onto Bolin sitting on the right of her with his arm around Seda. Iroh sat on her left. She was glad two big guys were sitting on either side of her, keeping her warm. Korra breathed a sigh of relaxation. It's been a while since she had a clear mind.

"Have you talked to your parents?" Iroh asked her in a whisper. Korra spoke too soon.

Korra shot her face in Iroh's direction, then averted her eyes over the ledge of the building looking at the passer byers. She nodded her head, slowly. She did talk to her mom at least. "Yeah..." she croaked.

"How's your dad?"

That really caught her attention. Korra almost joked to ask him why but the serious face he gave her made her bite her words. "I haven't spoke to him yet." she answered.

"..." he hummed, "You can't avoid him forever."

"I know." Korra said quietly, averting her eyes back to the street below. Korra was scared to talk to her dad, even though her mother assured her her father had nothing but unconditional love for Korra, she still couldn't gather up the courage to talk to him. She never doubted her father's love. She doubted her ability to ever make him as proud as he once was with her before she ruined everything for herself.

"Don't make him wait long, Korra." Iroh took her hand and sqeezed it.

"Ah, this is the life." Bolin shouted, stretching his arms over his head. "Good booze. Good friends. Good times." Seda giggled at his antics. When Bolin lent down to kiss her, his phone went off. Looking at his cell his face went pale, "Uh, I gotta answer this."

Everyone nodded, turning to look back at the city lights.

"Hey..yeah. Yeah. Well I'm with friends an-. Oh...Oh! Tonight? Okay, I got ya. Mm-hmm...See you in a bit." Bolin hung up and looked at Korra with a look of apology, "That was Mako. He takes off at the airport tomorrow morning and wanted to spend time with me tonight. I'm so sorry, Korra."

Korra's face contorted in confusion. Her heart still stung hearing Mako's name. "He's your brother, Bolin. I would never come between you two. Go. He needs you more than I do."
He reluctantly nodded in agreement. Seda went with him so he could take her home before heading to Mako's.

"Well, I better get going too. I know you have work in the morning and I'm sure Asami's home right now."

Korra smiled in understanding. "Thank you for kicking my butt out of bed."

"Anytime." he grinned, giving her a hug and climbing down the fire exit.

Korra sat alone, contemplating the last couple weeks.

*break*

Korra parked into the garage of Future Indistries coperate office. She rubbed her hands on the steering wheel of her car, glad to be able to drive her baby after such a long while. She made her way into the building and noticed that everyone was running frantic. Several people ran into her, dropping papers as she made her way to the elevator. What the hell is going on? This definitely wasn't normal and Korra's mind was running a mile a minute. She aggressively pushed the up button on the elevator. After what seemed like an eternity the doors flew open. She quickly stepped inside pushing the button for floor 35. The elevator doors swung open at several differnet stops revealing large groups of people scattering in different directions and yelling. She finally made it to Asami's office floor only to see law enforcement scattered all over the place. An officer going through her desk.

"Hey! What the hell are you doing?!" She stomped over. A woman about her height, gray hair and black aviators stopped her in her tracks.

"This is official police business, I'm going to have to ask you to leave."

"Who the fuck are you?" Korra asking, extending her height and looking the woman dead in the eyes. She didn't like her attitude.

The female officer removed her sunglasses revealing narrowing green eyes, "Like I said, official police business. Now I ask the questions around here. Who are you?"

"Listen, lady, I work here and your idiotic peer over there is rummaging through my shit."

The officer looked over at the man going through Korra's desk and rolled her eyes. "This place is under investigation. EVERYTHING in this building is now police evidence."

Korra shook her head and looked at the badge sitting on the breast of the female officer's uniform. Chief Beifong.

"I'm telling you, I don't know anything!"

Korra swerved past the Chief who was surprised by her maneuver and rushed into Asami's office once she heard her voice. Her office was in disarray. Police officers went through every nook and cranny of the office and threw contents out on the floor. Asami was standing behind her desk crying and arguing with the officers going through her stuff. her green-hazel eyes caught Korra's and began to rapidly spill tears.

"Korra. I-I-" she stammered," My dad he-he-"

Korra dropped her purse and briefcase and rushed to Asami's side, holding her as she sobbed. Korra allowed her to let it all out before finally managing to finish what she was saying, "My dad, he's being indicted. They're saying he was involved with the Red Circle Equalist explosion a couple weeks ago. but that can't be true!"

Korra noddd her head quickly, "Well, where is he? I'm sure he can clear this up."

"I don't know!" she yelled, taking Korra by surprise. "He hasn't answered his cell or house phone. The police say his mansion was completely abandoned!"

Korra's eyes widened in shock.

Asami closed her eyes and sobbed again, "What am I going to do? I lost everything!"

*break*

Future Industries was shut down immediately after the long investigation proved that Hiroshi Sato was indeed involved and funding the Equalist movement. Blueprints of weapons and machinery were found in an underground factory below the Sato Mansion. Asami had nothing to her name at the moment. All assests were frozen until further investigation and Asami had to sell her things just to get by, moving in with Korra in the meantime. Unfortunately it also meant the loss of Korra's job and she ended up applying at a temp agency until she found something solid. In the meantime she assured Asami to take her time getting back on her feet.

Some assets were released to Asami after the new year but only enough to start over, she refused to give up on Future Industries even if it meant her last penny. She wouldn't allow her father's downfall to prevent her from getting back everything she lost. Korra was proud of her.

It took less than a year after the explosion at the arena before Korra managed to find a stable job after working so many temp jobs that paid almost crap so she was happy to find this one, only Asami wasn't. She received an offer to become an assistant to a councilman at City Hall, which Asami didn't mind, except Korra would be under Councilman Tarrlok. Korra made sure her friend understood that she was more than capable of handling herself around someone like Tarrlok. Her friend wasn't sure, but she did her best to set her trust in Korra's confidence.

Chapter Text

"I still say it's a bad idea." Asami mumbled over the speakers of Korra's car currently connected through the Bluetooth of Korra's phone. Korra was on her way to City Hall when Asami called to get her to change her mind. "I don"t trust the guy one bit."

"I'm not there to get personal, Asami, I'm there to work. Plus, the pay is just to good to turn down. As long as he doesn't screw me job wise, we'll get along just fine."

"..." Asami groaned, "I suppose. But the first sign of something shady coming from that guy, please tell me you'll back out immediately?"

"Ugh...I'll at least promise you that. Happy?"

"No. But close enough."

Things have been pretty tough the past year for Asami and yet she still puts Korra's feeling before her own. Korra hung up the phone after their conversation and could see City Hall in the distance. She should arrive there in five.

After Future Industries was raided, Asami, Korra and several other employees and board members were brought into questioning at the police station. They made sure to separate Korra nd Asami, and that put Korra in a more fouler mood than she was before. She was escorted into an a interrogation room with a one sided window looking in. When an officer with a small cup of coffee came in, he extended his arm with a smile and offered it to her. Scowling her face Korra slapped the cupped hard enough to knock it out his hand and down on the floor. She had already been waiting in the room for over an hour. The officer gave her a confused look.

"Why the fuck am I here? And where's Asami?!"

"I apologize, ma'am." He said, trying to not show how intimidated she was making him, and he didn't even know half of what she was capable. "I can't tell you that at the moment."

"Then who the hell can?!"

"I'm going to have to ask you to sit-down." The door to the room swung open and Chief Beifong stepped inside. She narrowed her eyes at Korra, then her subordinate. "It's there a problem, Officer Lang?"

"N-no, Chief!" He stumbled to move out of the way when Beifong took strides to the table him and Korra both stood at. He was more intimidated by the Chief at this point.

She turned slowly moving her eyes to land on the face of the other officer, "Then I suggest you get it together." She said between clenched teeth.

Korra eased into the chair behind her, satisfied with Officer Lang's worried look.

Facing Korra again, Beifong slumped her shoulders and put her hands behind her back," Your are here-Korra, is it, to answer a few questions regarding the Satos involvement with the Equalist. Now I'm going to have to a-"

"Asami wasn't involved. She would never take part in such things."

Beifong rubbed her temples,"Korra, as much as I know you want to believe your little friend is innocent, can you honestly think a rich, pampered girl such as herself wouldn't get her hands dirty when 'daddy' is providing?"

Korra stood straight up and kicked the chair she sat on back so hard it slammed against the wall behind her."You just made the list, bitch!"

"Oh, did I?" Beifong walked up to Korra and stood face to face with her, noses inches apart. Blue eyes burning into green. "And what are you going to do about it?"

If Korra could bend fire, she would've burned this woman to a crisp. Officer Lang moved his head back and forth between Beifong and Korra, the tension in the room became so intense, he thought he was going to get swallowed in it and suffocate.

"You don't want to know."

"Oh, I think I can handle it."

"Chief!" Lang squeaked, "You remember last time something like this happened? This isn't good."
Before Beifong got the chance to speak, another officer walked in the room with a file under his arm, "Chief," he started, "We got some of the board members to talk. Miss Sato and her friend doesn't seem to be involved."

The Chief growled and stomped her feet to the door, turning to Korra before she walked out, "You best keep yourself out of trouble, if you know what's good for you."

"Yeah, I'm shaking." Korra rolled her eyes. Bitch.

Beifong slammed the door and Korra huffed at the woman's ignorance. Officer Lang led her to the front desk to gather her things. Asami was waiting in the lobby sitting down with her elbows on her knees and her head in her hands. They drove back to Asami's place where Iroh was waiting. It was already late leaving the police station, so Korra crashed on Asami's couch that night.

Eventually Asami and Korra decided in order to save money, that they both find a place and move in together. Iroh offered his two bedroom apartment since he was away often on duty and the ladies gratefully accepted. It would definitely help until they got back on their feet. Asami sold all she had in her previous home besides her clothes and keepsakes, paying off her car until she managed to get some of the money to the Sato fortune released to her. Korra put her things in storage until her and Naga found a cheap apartment to live in. She didn't want to invade Iroh's place for too long. She eventually found a descent apartment. It wasn't as nice as her last one, but Korra was comfortable enough. Iroh and Asami decided by then it was time to live together permanently.

When Korra arrived inside City Hall, she was directed by the front desk to Councilman Tarrloks office. They advised her it was on the third level three doors down to the right. She ascended up the stairs, the elevator seeming to be too crowded since it was the first day of the week. The building was more extravagant inside than it was out and it took Korra's breath away, making her more giddy to start the day. She circled around, in awe of the beautiful marble floors and walls all the way to the gorgeous carvings and paintings around the interior building. Not paying attention to her surroundings, she ran into an elderly man and knocked the papers he was holding all over the floor.

"Oh, I'm sorry!" Korra quickly apologized. She bent down on her knees to help pick the fallen papers. She gathered them all and brought them up to hand to the man. He was shaking with what seemed like worry and his eyes were wide. He was a thin, small of a man and gray haired. Korra thought he reminded her of a mouse the way he squeaked when she ran into him.

"Oh, no..I-I have to get these to Councilman Tarrlok organized and as soon as possible. I don't know w-what I'm going to do!"

"Calm down, we can fix this. In what order were you organizing these?"

He told her by date and Korra being the quick minded assistant she had always been with Asami, she managed to get the papers in order and handed them to mouse-guy in a matter of minutes with a triumphant grin. She managed to guess who he was by the signature on the forms he dropped.

"You must be Councilman Tarrlok's assistant, I am Korra. I was recently hired to aid him, as well. And you are?" She brought out her hand to shake his.

He gave her a dumbfounded look and didn't even bother to take her hand but instead slowly nodded in understanding, "Well, the Councilman doesn't like to wait, s-so please follow me." he pushed his glasses up his nose and made hace to Tarrlok's office. Korra tried to keep up but she found out for a short little man, he was awfully quick on his feet.

When mouse-guy opened the door trying to hold on tight to the papers in his arms so they wouldn't fall, Korra took in how large the office was. It's more gorgeous than the rest of this building. This man must be top dog.

There were various windows to the right of the office facing a wonderful view of Republic City and behind the desk was a waterfall in the background. Korra's heart stung with a bit of homesickness. Sitting behind the desk himself was Councilman Tarrlok. He was wearing a dark blue suit and vest with three long traditional ponytails adorned with tribal hair bands.

He slammed down the pen he was writing with before he stood up and looked up at mouse-guy with a deep frown. "Lao, where have you been? I've been waiting on those forms for the Northern Water Tribe. You were suppose to be here ten minutes ago!"

"S-sorry, Councilman! I meant to get here as soon as possible." Lao starting shaking even more intensely.

"He meant not ot be late, Councilman. He was just showing the newcomer the ropes a bit." She winked at Lao, and he blushed in embarrassment.

"And you are?" Tarrlok narrowed his eyes at her.

"I am Korra. I was sent by the agency to be your permanent additional assistant."

"Oh." His eyebrows shot up, and he cleared his throat, "Well, then welcome, Korra. Seeing as you will be starting here today, I want you to be aware that you are required to be quick on your feet. We don't want you ending up like some people." Lao squeaked when he realized Tarrlok was referring to him.

Tarrlok stood up from his desk chair and walked straight out the office with Lao and Korra behind him. He quickly named off his daily routines and schedules with Korra writing them down in her little notepad, not missing a single word he said. Once he reached a set of double doors much like his own office doors, he stopped abruptly. Lao almost slammed right into him, and Tarrlok caught his shoulders and aggressively brought him steady with a growl.

"And I will tell you now, Miss Korra, any sign of incompetence will lead to automatic termination without question. I will not tolerate those who can not keep up with me and the other councilman you will be assisting." he eyed Lao.

Other councilman? She wasn't aware of that. Assisting Tarrlok seemed like enough of a hassle as it was, what other prick did she have to deal with as well?

"Understood, Councilman." Korra bowed slightly.

Tarrlok arched an eyebrow and hummed, "Well, you will be given a proper uniform before the end of your day. Since we are considered a council of diversity, we will allow those who work here to wear the colors of their nationality."

That at least made Korra feel a little better.

"Since the other councilman is not here at the moment, I will give you the grand tour and introduce you to the other councilmen."

Korra was lead to different offices just as beautiful and extravagant as Tarrlok's only each one represented their nationality. The first councilman Tarrlok introduced her to was Councilman Quon from the Earth Kingdom. He was a burley man just as tall as Korra with a gut as round as the moon. He had a thick clean cut beard and his squinty green eyes were hard to see. His belly bounced when he laughed and he gave a big grip when he took Korra's hand to shake. It was as gentle and warm as his personality and Korra tried not to laugh at his bouncing belly.

They left with Quon offering Korra to join him for tea some time and they moved on to met up with Councilwoman Ayumu from the Fire Nation. Korra's throat went dry when they entered her office. It's her! Ayumu turned in her rotating chair and uncrossed her legs when she made a move to stand up. The name suit her because she walked with such grace. Her coal black hair was neatly set in a tight bun. Her gold eyes were sharp and her thin red lips were a deep color against her pale smooth skin. She took her hands, painted nails as red as her lips, and placed, clasped, them in front of her.

"Councilman Tarrlok." She nodded her head at Korra, "So what do I owe the pleasure?"

"This is Korra," he gestured, "She will be working under me as my Assistant from this day forward."

She gave Korra what was suppose to be a genuine smile but ended up looking like a sinister smirk. Korra's mouth went dry. The last time she had seen this woman, she was in tears holding her little girl among smoke and rubble. Korra wanted to break down right then and there but she held her own. She doubted the woman remembered her anyway.

"Well, it is lovely to meet you, Miss Korra."

They all turned their heads when another pair of feet walked in. A tall bald man with a thin face and pointed beard walked in, his gray eyes scanned the others faces in the room and he looked to Korra. He looked as though he was not expecting her and he then smiled.

"I apologize for intruding, Ayumu, I did not realize you had guest."

Ayumu shook her head, "Not quite. This is Korra. Korra, this is Councilman Tenzin who represents the Air Nation. She will be aiding Tarrlok as his assistant, Tenzin."

Tenzin strode up to Korra and shook her hand, "Nice to meet you, Korra. Although I may have to cut this introduction short. I have business with Councilwoman Ayumu."

"Not at all."Korra smiled professionally.

They left Ayumu's office. Tarrlok stated he would be heading to a luncheon in twenty. As Tarrlok, Lao and Korra headed back to his office, Tarrlok stopped in front of the office they were at before she met the others and looked over to see the double doors open. Tarrlok stepped inside with his assistants behind him and approached the councilman sitting at the desk listening quietly to what seemed like light jazz. While Tarrlok's office was simple, this one was heavily decorated with water tribe artifacts.

"Ah, Noatak, you're here. While I have you, I wanted to introduce you to Korra. She will be an additional assistant to both of us."

The tan skinned man who was slightly lighter than Tarrlok and Korra didn't move his eyes from whatever he was reading over and hummed. Korra thought that sounded familiar. "Well, I hope she can do a lot better job than that mouse of a man you call an assistant."

Then it hit her like a million bricks and her eyes went wide. "You!"

Tarrlok and Noatak snapped their attention over to where Korra was standing. Noatak squinted his eyes as though he wasn't sure what she was referring to.

"You're the perverted old man from the tea shop who tried to give me sex tips!"

Chapter Text

"You're the perverted old man from the tea shop that tried to give me sex tips!" Korra announced. The words leaving her before she had the chance to realize what she was actually saying. Tarrlok and Lao were stunned, eyes wide and mouths agape. Noatak only arched an eyebrow, obviously not amused by her outburst. His expression unmoving, Korra couldn't tell if he actually did remember her or not. At this point, she felt it didn't matter.

Laughing nervously, she wished the floor would open up and swallow her whole. Smooth, Korra. Fucking smooth. Her face turned as red as a tomato and she could feel the tension blanket over the room like an approaching fog. This was not how Korra acted in work mode, but said pervert rocked her stability like a cradle. Their last encounter was not on friendly terms and she couldn't contain the anger pushing her to a boiling point when she remembered the way he embarrassed her in front of her friend and possible onlookers. Korra didn't show up at that tea shop since, even though she would've loved to get a hold of their sea prune and chocolate chip scones. She was always known for holding grudges.

"I mean-I um..." she scratched the back of her head nervously, wondering what excuse to come up with for her lack of professionalism. But when she realized she didn't actually have one, she knew what she had to do. She closed her eyes and made a low bow, her bob covering half her face, to Councilman Noatak," I apologize for my rashness, Councilman." She stood up, back straight and eyes forward, "I did not mean to step out of line. I assure you this is not how I act during work and if you give me a chance, I will prove just how capable an assistant I can be."

Noatak still didn't show any reaction to her apology but he sighed, turning back to the forms he was reviewing before they all showed up. "Just make sure it doesn't happen again." He stated flatly, waving her away.

"Yes, Councilman." Korra made a slight bow as Tarrlok came up to lead her out of the office with Lao hurrying behind them. Korra still wasn't at ease after the ordeal. She felt a hole develop in the pit her stomach. What they didn't notice was the sly smirk spreading on Noatak's face as they exited the office.

*break*

Tarrlok left for his Luncheon but not without snickering over today's earlier encounter and making Korra want to sock him in his face. While he was gone, Lao started showing Korra the ropes despite his reluctance. He showed her where and how Tarrlok liked his office organized, how he liked his coffee and tea, what his normal guest preferred when visiting Tarrlok, where his dry cleaning was dropped off, where he got his luxury car detailed, and a bunch of other odd errands. What am I, this guy's nanny? She thought. When she asked what Councilman Noatak's scheduling was like, he only gave her a short list. Thank goodness the man was simple and a lot less complicated than Tarrlok.

"Councilman Tarrlok isn't as demanding as his brother, but he can be just as intimating if not more." Lao spoke quietly.

"Brother?! So their both from the Northern Water Tribe? How are they on the Council?"

"There was no one capable enough to take or even want the seat representing the Southern Water Tribe." Lao started to shake," Councilman Tarrlok, being chairman, pulled some strings to give his brother the seat. We all thought it would be conflicting but Councilman Noatak proved himself more than capable and has kept his personal life with Councilman Tarrlok completely separate from work. They work together to represent both tribes even though the Southern refuses to adhere to Northern laws and traditions but Noatak seems to have compromised with them on some level and they began to trust him."

Korra's eyebrows shot up. Oh, so he's that Noatak. She should've figured. Noatak was, of course, a more popular name in the North than the South. Her father seemed to know the man on a personal level the way he talked of him. Her father was from the North himself. Korra never really thought twice about it. The man apparently has been in office the past decade along with his brother. "I see." Korra cut the conversatoion about Noatak there.

Tarrlok sent word that he would not be returning to the office around noon and had dismissed Korra early in order to be prepared for tomorrow's real work. She had to show up at least an hour before Tarrlok and Noatak and leave an hour after. Ugh, she still wasn't a morning person. But the overtime was worth it. Lao gave her several styled uniforms she would be wearing during work. One outfit was a light blue short-sleeved shirt that reminded Korra of a qipao with white lilies stitched into it along with a black pencil skirt to match. The other four outfits were similar but with different shades of blue and designs. She was given the address of the coffee shop the councilmen preferred to pick up their coffee and breakfast pastries in the morning. She was pleased to find it was right on the route from her place to City Hall.

Korra got home later that day, took a shower and slipped into her sweats and tee before taking Naga for a walk to the nearest park. They stayed out, sharing kushiyaki that a vendor in the park was selling until the sun set. When they both made it back home, Korra setting up her clothes for work the next morning, her cell went off. "Hey Asami." She answered, knowing who was on the other end without checking the caller ID.

"So, how was your first day?"

"Um, it was..."she thought back to her encounter with Noatak."...eventful?"

"Eventful, how?" Asami urged her to continue.

"Nothing really. It was so much more different than I was expecting but good, I guess."

"That's...nice. You busy right now?"

"No, not now but I have to get up for work at four thirty."

"Oh, boo. But are you wiling to come by me and Iroh's place on Sunday? He's making his famous curry."

Korra's stomach growled. Iroh's cooking was life, especially his curry. "I'm sold."

"Haha. Well see you then, Miss City Hall Assistant."

Speaking of food, Korra only had that beef skewer from the park since she left work and she was starting to feel hunger pains. She made instant ramen and quickly fried an egg and went to sit on the couch eating before walking to the bedroom to sleep for the next day.

*break*

Getting up at four thirty in the morning proved more of a hassle than Korra anticipated. Making it into the coffee shop at a quarter after six sharp made it, at least, easy for Korra to get in and out with Tarrlok's caramel latte and Noataks black coffee no cream, two spoons of sugar. She made sure to also order various bagels and paid for it all with the company credit card. The coffee shop was literally a five minute drive from work and Korra made sure to have everything set up for both Tarrlok and Noatak's arrival.

Lao was already there preparing both the councilmen's schedule for the day. When Korra neatly set up Noatak's coffee and plain bagel with low fat cream cheese, he walked into his office. Korra turned her wrist. 6:50. He was earlier than expected. "Good morning, Councilman Noatak." She bowed slightly, standing back up to put her hair behind her ear.

He stopped as though he noticed her for the first time. Looking her up and down, he nodded in acknowledgement before seating in his chair, grabbing the coffee to take a sip. His eyebrows knitted and he turned to Korra, "My coffee..." Korra held her breath. What did she do now? "Your honestly the first person to get it right." he took another sip and opened his desk drawer to take out a couple of binders. "Get these typed up and email it to these addresses. Make sure you CC me when you send them."

"Yes, Coucilman." She left his office with a sigh of relief and went to her desk right outside his office and began to type the emails. He had more than Korra expected but she finished right before it as time for lunch. She grabbed the file from her desk with Noatak's schedule and went back into his office. Lao was with Tarrlok this morning so she only had Noatak to deal with. She neatly placed the file on Noatak's desk and asked him to sign a few forms. "Did you want lunch out or was there something I can order you?" she asked while he signed the forms. Goodness his handwriting was beautiful.

"Out." he responded. "You will be joining me."

Her brows knitted, "Sir?"

"There's a decent noodle shop about ten minutes from here. We'll take my car."

"No, I mean, why are you inviting me?"

"It's not to give her seducing tips if that's what got you worried." He grinned. He did remember her! "So you do remember me?" Her voice rose unconsciously.

"It's quite hard to forget someone with such.." He paused to search for the word, "...personality."

"What's that suppose to mean?" she crossed her arms in front of her chest. Councilman or not, she wasn't the type to put up with insults. "You think I'm crazy?"

He shook his head, "On the contrary, Miss Korra, I find you refreshing." His grin grew wider. "Let's head out, shall we?" He lightly placed his hand on her lower back and motioned her out of the office. She narrowed her eyes as he lead the way out of his office. They took the elevator to a part of the garage Korra's never seen before. They walked towards a dark blue luxury vehicle in a reserved parking space and Korra's mouth dropped. Nice taste. She wasn't into expensive material, actually preferring the simpler things in life being raised around a community where they made and hunted for the things they needed.

When Korra went to the driver's door to open it for him, he grabbed for her wrist to stop her and told her to get in the passenger's seat. She contorted her face in confusion but walked to the passenger's side to climb into the car. The black leather seats were smooth against her bare legs sticking out from the pencil dress she was wearing and it smelled like soft cologne. Korra actually liked the scent. It was calming. When they drove off, the car was quiet and peaceful along the way. Korra didn't feel uncomfortable with the silence between her and Noatak.

She soon realized they were leaving downtown and heading towards the outskirts. Where was he taking her? They ended up parking in an area not too far from the fishing docks. He lead her through the door of a small restaurant, the single bell chiming as the door hit it. Korra looked around, only find two patrons sitting at the booth eating a bowl of noodles. A tall wide built water tribesman entered from the back of the building and into the space behind a bar counter filled with various bottles of liquor on the shelves behind him. His dark blue eyes were strong and his built; intimidating. The scar running from the tip of his chin through his lips to his nose showed he was indeed a fierce tribesman .

"Noatak." he greeted in a thick northern water tribe accent that Korra had a hard time picking up, "You haven't been here in months!" he chuckled. " Who might this pretty young thing be? Your girl?"

"This is Korra. Korra, this is Narook, the owner." he introduced and Korra nodded her head, "She is my assistant and will be accompanying me for lunch this afternoon." He spoke in a smooth accent that Korra found soothing.

"I see. So, Korra, how is this old man treating you?" Narook turned his eyes to Korra.

She laughed at Narrok's nickname for Noatak. "Fine, I suppose." she replied with her signature smirk. Noatak seemed pleased she could speak water tribe. Not a lot of the younger Southerners did or bothered to learn. "He's not too demanding." Northern accents were hard for her to understand, but she got the jist.

Narook busted out laughting, holding his belly. "You haven't known him long enough, sweetheart. What can I get ya, then?"

Korra and Noatak took a seat at the bar counter and Noatak ordered them both a bowl of seaweed noodles and deep fried breaded sea prunes. Korra sucked down her noodles like a vacuum and didn't give a care in the world who watched. She hadn't had good food like this since she left home. Noatak was so amused by her enthusiasm, he ended up ordering her another bowl in which she accepted gratefully without a second thought. The fried sea prunes were especially delicious and she tried to ask Narook for the recipe, which he stated was a family recipe and just couldn't give it away.

After conversing with Narook while Korra finished off her third bowl of noodles, she politely interrupted them to remind Noatak of a court session assembling in an hour with the other councilmen. They said their goodbyes to the owner, and Narook gracefully took Korra's hand to place a kiss on it. His lips were rough.

" 'Ey, if you ever get tired of that old man, you can always get with this one." he pointed a thumb at himself and winked.

"I don't think your wife would be pleased with that, Narook." Noatak warned.

"Yeah, yeah." Narook waved. "But who knows how long she'll put with me." he grinned mischievously.

"Tell you what," Korra started, "I'll ditch this old man if you can give me better seducing tips than him." Korra winked at Noatak.

"Hah! Noatak, you might want to hold on to this one, 'fore someone else takes her."

"Again, she's my assistant. Nothing else." Noatak corrected.

Korra nodded in agreement but felt a pang in her chest from his confession. Why does that bother me?

Noatak and Korra went their separate ways when they arrived back to City Hall. Lao took an early day so she was required to take over Tarrlok's needs while Noatak and him were in court. She actually had a nice first day.

*break*

Asami was setting the table while Iroh was adding ingredients into a saucepan and stirring the white rice in the cooker. Korra lazed out on their couch watching a fight on tv and sipping on the rice wine Asami poured for her. She swung her leg back and forth over the edge of the couch. The tip of her toes skimming the carpeted floor. The rest of the week went surprisingly smooth. Despite the crazy errands Tarrlok had her on, she was able to finish her tasks with urgency and on time. Tarrlok seemed impressed but to Korra it felt like he was challenging her. Noatak on the other hand hadn't asked her out to lunch again. He kept her somewhat busy. He was demanding but was compromising all the same.

Asami kicked Korra's foot off the side of the couch she wanted to sit on and leaned an arm on the back of it with her hand holding her head. She lightly sipped the glass of rice wine she poured for heself. "So, how was your week?"

"Honestly, not too bad when I'm not being ran around by someone who smells like cherry blossoms." Korra answered.

Asami almost snorted out her drink and laughed, "I told you."

"Yeah, he has me getting his dry cleaning and shit. I'm surprised he hasn't made me wipe his ass, but I figure that'd be hard considering how tight it is." "Awe, it all can't be bad."

"Well..." Korra considered bring up Noatak when Iroh called them over to the dinner table.

"Dinner is served, ladies." Iroh smiled proudly as they all took a seat, Asami offering him a kiss on the cheek. They chatted as they ate their curry and rice. When they cleaned their plates, Iroh stood up with a hand on his chest and holding Asami's with his other.

"Well, Korra, I hadn't just called you here to enjoy my delicious curry, by the way, your welcome." Korra gave him the okay with her fingers and winked. "But for you to also bear witness to the amazing event getting ready to take place in this very room." He cleared his throat, "Asami, you have been with me despite the struggles me being in the military has caused us. But through it all, you gave me worth, something I've never felt before and I want to prove to you, from this day forward, that I will always stay one hundred percent committed to our relationship. As you both know, I have been away a lot but since the previous dangers that imposed the City have become calm, I'm able to take the time to think more clearly than ever." Asami squeezed his hand and smiled. He then moved the chair behind him and got on one knee. The situation finally clicked for Asami and Korra. Asami turned to Korra as though asking her what was going on and Korra shrugged, her face telling her that she was just as confused as Asami was.

"Iroh! What are you doing? Get up." She shook his hand trying to get him to stand back up.

"Asami Sato, will you make me the happiest man in the world and allow me to take your hand in marriage?"

Asami burst out in tears and put a hand over her mouth. She nodded her head eagerly when Iroh pulled out a box and opened it to reveal a pink princess cut diamond ring. "Yes!"

They both stood up to embrace one another as Korra watched with a smile on her face and a hand over her heart. "Awww...That was kind of cheesy." Korra commented, laughing at Iroh when he flipped her the finger. But she truly was happy for them.

Chapter Text

Korra came to work a little hungover from last nights outing. A week after their engagement announcement, Bolin thought it'd be a great idea to head out on the town to celebrate. It was last minute and Korra had to work the next day but she couldn't miss out on being surrounded with all her friends since it was hard to catch up recently. Asami was building back Future Industries after its bankruptcy and was introduced to Varrick, a nobleman who owned an expansive business empire that derived from the South Pole. Varrick sponsored Bolin's boxing career and offered to invest in Asami's business. She wasn't where she needed to be but she was grateful enough to get further than where she was before thanks to Varrick's support.

Iroh was still away at times but not as much as usual. Spending his days with Asami as much as he could and making wedding plans with her.

Bolin's boxing career was taking off with Seda supporting him on the sidelines. Their relationship was becoming more serious and Korra couldn't be more happy for them.

But at night when she would lie in bed, an overwhelming wave of loneliness began to consume her. She still didn't feel anywhere near ready for a relationship especially after her severe break up with Mako a year ago. She didn't exactly miss him but she missed the way he made her feel. A warm body comforting her at night, the flirting, the content in knowing someone was there when she would need them. A part of her felt like something was missing. But she told herself that if it was a relationship then she refused.

Then something popped into her head a few days back that made her eyes glaze over and her hand slide from the middle of her exposed stomach her panties.

Noatak...

Once his name popped into her head she gasped, pulling her hand away from where the heat was pooling between her legs.

What the hell is wrong with me.

Her cheeks burned from embarrassment thinking about it as she arranged Tarrlok's breakfast on his desk. For spirits sake, the man was over twice her age. But when she really thought about it, his ice blue eyes, slicked back brown hair, muscular physique and smooth voice, it made her wonder what years of sexual experience he could teach her in bed.

Korra unconsciously bit her lower lip. Not at work, Korra! Stop it!

She dismissed her thoughts in time for Tarrlok to show up in the office. He seemed in a good mood today.

"Korra, today is the day for celebrating." He grinned.

"Is that so, Councilman." Korra humored him.

"Why, of course. My Task Force is making progress in capturing Equalists every passing day." He took a sniff of his caramel latte and sipped it, "It won't be long until we capture Amon and bring him to justice." He balled his hand into a fist and smiled broadly.

"I have no doubt about that, Sir." Korra rolled her eyes.

"No doubt, indeed. Tonight I will be hosting a Gala with all of Republic City's finest in order to celebrate our progress." Korrs nodded. Writing it down in her little notepad.

"Should I reschedule all of today and tomorrow's appointments for you. I can make phone calls tomorrow f-"

"No need, Korra." he interrupted, "Of course you will be joining me tonight, so you'll also be taking tomorrow off."

He's joking, right? "Sir?"

"Of course you are. There to assist me so drinking will be out of the question."

"Um, I don't know, Sir. I've never been to such an extravagant event and I'm sure Lao would be a better choice-"

"Oh, please." He interrupted, waving his hand, "Anyone would be a better choice than Lao. So make sure you have him give you a list of all our guest. We don't want to be embarrassed, now do we?" He eyed her.

"Um...," Korra really wanted to protest her attendance to this event. "...No, Councilman." She sighed. Now she was going to have to rush to Asami's for an outfit. 

"Good! Now go memorize those names!"

Korra pouted her way out of the his office and shot Asami a quick text about her needing a dress. When she got the list of names from Lao of every person attending the gala, she sat at her desk to read it over. After getting through several names, her cell rang. "Hello?"

"Your going to the gala tonight, too?" Asami screeched.

"Too?"

"Yeah, Varrick allowed me to join him tonight so I could be introduced to other investors."

"That's good news Asami. Does that me you'll allow me to join you in turning this mug into someone worthy of joining a gala? At least enough to aid her demanding boss?"

"Well of course but what I have won't work. So, I think shopping is in order."

"Really, Asami? I honestly don't have the time to go shopping."

"Leave it up to me. It'll be a surprise." she hung up the phone.

Korra pulled her cell from her ear and shook her head, looking over the names and pictures of guest in alphabetical order. It was going to be a long night, apparently.

*break*

Korra had to rush home to walk Naga before going to Asami's to get ready for tonight's gala. When she stuffed the list of names in her briefcase to review one more time before tonight, she jogged toward the elevator almost running into Noatak who approached the doors at the same time. The doors opened and they both entered.

Korra and Noatak were silent on the way down. They've barely conversed outside of work matters since the day after they went for lunch at Narooks together. That was two weeks ago and honestly Korra felt disappointed. But it was probably for the best but somehow she wasn't satisfied with that conclusion. All she could do was push back her thoughts about him and purse her lips. The elevator stopped at Naotak's level, he stepped off and turned around to give Korra a slow, sly smirk. Her eyes widened and her mouth opened to say something but the elevator doors began to close, interrupting the words she wasn't sure she wanted to say, as his ice blue eyes stared into her cerulean.

What was that? She blushed.

She rushed home after reaching her level. She quickly walked Naga and fed her before making her way out to Asami's place. She arrived at Asami's around six, about three hours before the gala started. Korra was expected to be there by eight thirty to meet up with Tarrlok. Asami opened the door to the apartment and gestured for Korra to hurriedly follow her. Her long black hair flowed in waves behind her back. She wore a maroon silk V-neck gown with slits on both sides, showing off her beautifully long legs. Sometimes Korra wished she wasn't so short and shapely.

They entered Asami and Iroh's room and Asami walked to their bed to pick up a rectangular box lying on it and handed it over to Korra with a wide smile. Korra looked to Asami and back at the box and slowly began to open it. She removed the tissue and gasped once she got a peek of the pale blue dress. She dropped the box and tissue as she picked up the dress and spread it out to show off an off-the-shoulder side-slitted mermaid evening gown. It was adorned with silver rhinestones at the top of the dress and around the shoulder sleeves.

"Asami..." she ran her fingers over the silky dress, "this...H-how did you afford this."

Asami shook her head and placed a finger in front of her red lips.

"But your business-and your planning your wedding! This dress must have cost a fortune."

Asami laughed and walked up to Korra, pulling a black box from behind her back. She opened it to reveal a diamond studded necklace that flowed down like a waterfall and a matching diamond studded bracelet, "Now this I borrowed, so you'll have to take real good care of it."

"Asami, this is all so wonderful but it's too much. I-I don't know what to say."

"Then say you'll have a wonderful time tonight." She took hold of both of Korra's shoulders," That you'll break the necks of every man at that gala when you walk by looking like the goddess you truly are. I know you are only there for work, but this past year has been tough on you and I want you to feel as beautiful and amazing as you deserve feel."

Tears pooled around Korra's eyes and she quickly brought Asami into a tight hug. She couldn't ask for a better friend in the whole world. Even when she wanted to give up on herself, Asami never did.

They pulled away from the hug and Asami wiped a tear from Korra's cheek, "You ready to knock 'em dead?"

Korra laughed, "Hell yeah!"

*break*

Korra nervously walked back and forth adorned in the mermaid gown Asami bought her. Her open-toed heels, encrusted with silver rhinestones, tapping on the marble floor right outside the giant double doors leading to the City Hall Ballroom where the gala would be held. Her neck length hair was pinned over one side with a silver hairpiece shaped like a peacock and curled in waves. Asami used powder blue and white eyeshadow over her eyes and used eyeliner to give her wings. Korra's lips were painted a tulle purple. She held the clipboard close to her chest.

Tarrlok approached her from behind, silently, and she turned to look at him wide eyed when he laid a hand on her bare shoulder. His mouth seemed to have drop to the floor as his eyes roamed over the light blue gown hugging her figure in all the right places. He cleared his throat and nodded in approval, "You clean up nice, Miss Korra."

She wasn't sure if that was a compliment or not but decided to accept it as one and gave him a smile.

"Our guest will be here shortly. Are you ready?" He spoke in his demanding tone.

Korra stood up straight adjusting the ear piece she was wearing and nodded with enthusiasm. "Yes, Councilman."

"Good, let's get started with the final perpetrations."

Two gentlemen opened the large double doors leading into the ballroom from the inside. Korra and Tarrlok strode inside to get ready to greet the guest.

*break*

Tarrlok walked the floor gracefully greeting nobles, politicians, and high class business owners. Tarrlok stuck closer to Korra more she would've liked him to. He would inconsiderably place a hand on Korra's shoulder or back, skimming his fingers across her bare skin. He was treating her as though she was a trophy in front of his guest and peers. Any other time he would have barked orders at her.

She had the pleasure of seeing Tenzin, Quon and Ayumu again. Ayumu, as always, walked like she was on a bed of clouds and was extremely nice to Korra. She stood by Korra as Tarrlok chatted away to some businessmen and sipped on a glass flute of champagne. "You think I don't remember you, don't you?"

Korra snapped her head to Ayumu in shock, "I, um, wasn't too sure." she stammered.

Ayumu gave Korra a gentle smile, "I could never forget the young lady who tore her dress and bruised herself bloody to retrieve my dear Chin from all that rubble. And for that, I thank you." she placed a hand on Korra's shoulder to make her face her more closely. "I owe you, for what you have done. Even though my Chin is gone..."she sobbed quietly, "...even though he's gone, he was the type of man who always believed in paying it forward. Anything you want, anything at all, please don't hesitate to come to me."

Korra lifted a hand to stop her and shook her head, "I did what I did because it was the right thing to do. I only wish there was more I could've done. Your acknowledgement is more than I think I deserve."

Ayumu bowed and took Korra's hand, "You look absolutely stunning tonight, Korra." She scornfully eyed Tarrlok standing directly behind Korra, facing away from them still in conversation, "Make sure to keep the wolves at bay."

Ayumu let go of Korra's hand and walked away to greet other guest. Was that a warning?

It was about eleven in the evening when the gala became full with guest and the band playing jazz music brought people out to the dance floor. Tarrlok walked away to dance with a woman covered in expensive jewelry. Looking at her, Korra could see that she was gullible and easy and forcefully giggled at Tarrlok's stupid jokes. She decided that was a good time to take a bathroom break.

She walked into the ladies room to find Asami reapplying lipstick in front of the mirror. Asami had seen her reflection and turned around giving her a sweet smile. "So, Miss Korra, how is the night treating you?"

"Could be better if Tarrlok could stop bragging for fives minutes."

Asami rolled her eyes, "Best of luck."

"Meet any good investors?"

Asami clapped he hands together and began to bounce, "Like you wouldn't believe. Oh, Korra, this could be my chance to completely fix everything. I feel like there's something big to look forward to." Asami looked at the clock on the ladies room wall and gasped, "I better get back out there. And hey, don't forget to chat up a hot guy before the end of the night."

Yeah, right. "We'll see." she replied sarcastically.

Korra left the restroom a lot more refreshed and took the time to look around the gala. There were, indeed, men eyeing her from different parts of the ballroom. Some even whispering to one another and others giving her an inviting smile. She wasn't that easy.

She picked up the scent of familiar cologne and felt as though she was going to faint from blissful intoxication. She loved that scent. It also seemed familiar. She felt a figure tower over her from behind and the hairs on the back of her neck stood up. She was falling slightly dizzy from the warmth on her back.

"May I have this dance." His breath brushed against her neck as he whispered close to her ear. Korra bit her bottom lip and nodded. A strong hand grabbed wrist and spun her around to reveal Noatak as he backed her up into the dance floor. He took one of her hands and brought it around neck as he lifted her other one to hold, placing his other hand at the base of her spine. Korra was an awful dancer and has been known to send men home with bruised feet, but Noatak knew what he was doing with her. If she stepped out of rhythm, he seemed to avoid it with grace and bring her back to a proper stance.

His ice blue eyes held Korra's in a trance. He was a head taller than her. His lips tugged into a smirk, the same one from earlier at the garage elevators, and she almost went weak in the knees.

"I know you're not suppose to drink tonight because you're working. But as your employer, would you object to me bringing you to my office for a glass of fire ice I have tucked away?"

She swallowed a lump in her throat. This was dangerous. She knew that, "Not at all." she croaked shyly.

Noatak snuck her behind a curtain and through a door right next to the steps leading to the upper floors. She giggled, when the hell did she ever giggle, when he placed a finger to his lips for her to be quiet. She was feeling awfully giddy tonight. There were probably still security guards patrolling the halls. She slipped off her heels and quietly followed behind him. He unlocked his office door and took Korra's hand to pull her inside. Gently closing the door behind them.

Noatak walked to his bookshelf that was built into the wall and took a key out of the breast pocket of his dark blue tux to unlock the drawer at the bottom. While he pulled out the fire ice and two glasses, Korra lifted herself on his desk, her feet dangling, swinging gently back and forth. He set the glasses on an open shelf and poured them both. He walked over to his desk and handed her one. She could feel her body temperature rise when his fingers skimmed over her knuckles. Was that on purpose?

"You look as though you're enjoying yourself, Miss Korra." he stated cooly.

"Very much," she said, trying to sound just as confident. She took a slow sip of her glass while keeping her eyes on him.

He pressed forward and leaned into her, both hands sitting placed on the desk on either side of her. "Miss Korra, are you trying to seduce me?" He whispered, his baritone voice going deeper.

"Maybe I am." She whispered back in a sultry tone.

"Be careful what you say, Korra." He cocked his head, brows raised, "Because it sounds like you want to play a dangerous game."

"You think I can't handle it?" She looked from his eyes to glance his lips and back.

"I know you can't. But I believe a challenge is in order?"

Korra knew she was walking into something that was probably inappropriate and risky, but one thing she never did was back out from a challenge. And Noatak seemed to read her like a book.

"And what did you have in mind?"

He grinned widely and lifted her off his desk by her hips to stand her up. "You've intrigued me, Korra. I would love to see what other skills,.." He paused to scan her form and Korra's breath hitched, "you may be capable of. Although your stubbornness is your downfall, and as much as I'd like to see that crack, I don't think you have the full capability to go through with it."

Korra set her glass down and crossed her arms. "Hit me."

"Seduce me. I want you to try and seduce me the best you of your abilities. For each day that you succeed, I am yours to do whatever you ask of me."

"And what's in it for you?" she pointed.

That's when he placed his hand gently on her cheek. "Same goes for me. For everyday you fail, you will do as I say."

"Really?" she turned around, a devious look in her eyes and she arched her back to rub her bottom against his groin seductively.

"Really." He chuckled and placed both his hands on her hips to stop her. "Until next time, Korra."

Her legs quivered as the warmth of his body left her back. She turned around to see that he had already left the room.

Chapter Text

Korra woke in the morning at Asami's place, reminiscing every little detail of last night's event. Her heart hammered in her chest and she felt her stomach ached qith dread. What the hell did I agree to?

After her 'agreement' with Noatak, Korra felt like she was floating on air, although she was pretty sure it was the fire ice making her tipsy. It was disappointing that he cut their encounter so short but it wasn't like she wouldn't see him again. A big part of her as eager to see him right away but a small part of her couldn't help but think of the warning Ayumu left her that night. Maybe she was just looking into it too much.

She spent the rest of the evening following Tarrlok. He didn't seem to notice her earlier absence because he was still chatting with Miss Easy. When a half hour passed and he ended the conversation with his dance partner as he stuffed a small piece as of paper with her number in his tux pocket, he finally turned his attention to Korra.

"How are things going so far with our guests, Korra?"

"All seems well, Councilman."

"Good. Good." He lifted his head to down the rest of his champagne. "Ah, this has been an eventful evening. Korra, you are dismissed. You can stay and enjoy the party, of course." He turned on his heels and walked towards another group of people.

Korra sighed, slumping her shoulders and finally feeling the stinging pain in her feet from her heels. Honestly, exhaustion and the fire whiskey was starting to set it. It took her another half hour to find Asami in the crowd. She dragged herself over to her once she caught sight of her at the other end of the ballroom and informed Asami she was tired and ready to go. Asami agreed, stating she was feeling it too. Korra figured she was tipsy as well, and even though they both came in Asami's car, they decided it was best to take a cab and Korra would drive her back to pick it up-her own sitting at Asami's.

Once they stumbled into Asami's apartment, Korra knew she was in no shape to get home. The night's events finally weighing down at her at once. Korra crashed out on their couch as Asami crept into her room to where Iroh was already sleep. 

Her mind couldn't help but replay her moments with Noatak. He was charming, something Korra wasn't used to in men. His warmth was comforting, his cologne made her want to rub herself against him, and his voice made Korra shiver with need. No one has made her feel...so sexy and she oddly craved for more of his attention. Thinking about him made her blush deeply.

Until the next morning when she realized she may have gotten herself in trouble. She was so lost in his aura and warmth, she almost forgot she was working for him. She couldn't go through with this, she had to end it and end it fast. Then she thought about it. Maybe he didn't want sex. Maybe it was just an innocent flirting game.

Seriously? Do you honestly believe what you plan on doing wouldn't lead to such an act?

Korra groaned in frustration and slammed her head against the kitchen table she was sitting at. She almost knocked her coffee over.

She heard a door creak open and her groan turned into a irritated whimper.

"Korra?" Asami's voice cracked.

"..."

"You okay?"

She sighed deeply. "No..."lifting her head, "I'm not." She rubbed the sore, red spot on the middle of her forehead where she slammed it.

Asami nodded her head and went to the kitchen to pour a cup of coffee from the pot that Korra made earlier. She added cream and sugar and took a sip, smacking her lips afterwards and rubbing her temple. Korra figured she must have a hangover as well the way she dragged her feet to the table and slumped heavily into a seat. After taking another sip of her coffee, Asami set it down and propped her elbow on the table to hold her head in her hand. Korra finally looked up to see her smiling quite mischievously. " So, " Asami's voice croaked, "it has nothing to do with the guy you snuck away with last night during the gala?"

Korra almost spit out her coffee,. What?" She was not expecting that. Oh, spirits, did anyone else see them?

Asami chuckled, "I'm pretty sure no one else saw you. I tried to get some space from the crowd and seen you leave a room after said mystery guy."

Korra was speechless. Shit.

"So, who is the lucky guy?"

Korra wasn't sure where to even start. Just a few moments ago she planned on backing out on...whatever this was between her and Noatak. So, would it be a big deal to tell Asami about it? But at the same time she wasn't sure if she really wanted to. The way Noatak pulled her in like an invisible force was too tempting to pass up. Making it harder to tell him directly she wanted out of the challenge. At the same time, she really didn't know this guy. He could also, very well be playing her or this was something he commonly did with other woman. If she ended up deciding to go along with his game, it would most likely have to be kept between the two of them, considering how much it might jeopardize both of their job. 

"I don't know what your talking about." Korra tried to feign.

"Korra, please. You're a terrible liar."

Korra bowed her head and started to blush from her cheeks to her neck, "Um..." she played with the rim of her coffee mug, "it's complicated...kind of..."

Asami tilted her head to the side and knitted her brows, "How complicated can it possibly be?"

Korra rubbed her face with both her hands, "It's complicated as in...being involved could lead to some issues..."

"Korra, if you like him, it shouldn't mat-"

"I don't like him!." Korra interrupted, "...I mean. I do like him. I just don't know if I like him like that. Right now...it's more or less of a...thing. Between us."

It took awhile before Asami's face contorted back to normal from confusion and ended up shaping her mouth like an 'O'. "I see. So, it's that kind of relationship?"

Korra nodded slowly. Kind of.  "But I'm not sure if I wanna continue."

"Why not. From what I've seen of him from a distance, he's hot as hell!"

"But-but, he's older. Like way older."

"Like how old?"

" I don't know, early to mid forties, maybe. Either way, it's best to probably sever whatever is going on with us before it starts."

"So you never slept with him?"

"No but we kind of agreed on...doing something together."

"Then do it."

"Asami!" Korra wasn't sure she heard her correctly. So she wanted her to have an affair with a man she barely knew? How the hell did that make sense. For all she knows he could have a girlfriend or wife with kids. This wasn't like Korra, and she wasn't sure she had the gulls to even continue with it let alone start to. She was brash, loud, and took action without thinking anything through when she was out of work mode. How the hell could she seduce anyone?

"Well, why not. You've had nothing but crappy relationships, you went through so much hell the past year and even before that, and goodness knows you need to get laid. You don't even have to tell me who is right now if you don't want to."

She was thankful because she honestly wasn't ready to. "Those aren't very good points."

"Yes, they are. Have fun, go crazy for once, and quit worrying about everyone else so damn much. If you want to fuck, then fuck. Just do it while being happy!"

Korra's jaw dropped, then she grabbed her belly and shook with laughter. She's never heard Asami talk like that and it was wonderful. After she wiped a stray tear from her eye and her laughter faded, she smiled at Asami, "I'll think about it."

"Good," Asami huffed," I should get paid for these life lessons I've been giving you. It's actually tiring."

*break*

Korra was typing some emails for Tarrlok. She kept looking to the left of her desk at Noatak's office door now and then, mentally freaking out. They barely spoke to each other since the night of the gala. That was two days ago and this morning they acted as normal. Well we are at work, she argued with herself. But she really needed to talk to him. She snuck a look to the right at Lao organizing some paperwork at his desk, then to Tarrlok's office where she could hear him and Noatak discussing some recent legislations. After hours of contemplating, she came to the conclusion she couldn't really do this.

What can she say? This just wasn't her and she wanted to keep her head clear for when she finally decided to get back in the dating game. Sex was complicated, and complication is definitely what she didn't need right now.

She was stirred out of her thoughts when Noatak and Tarrlok walked out of the office.

"Will you be joining me for lunch, Brother?"

Noatak shook his head, "Not today. I will be having lunch in my office so I can submit these forms on time to go home." he turned to Korra. "Miss Korra, please have lunch ordered and sent to my office. The usual, please."

"Yes, Councilman."

Tarrlok nodded and whistled for Lao to follow him. Lao jumped from his seat, tossing the forms he was organizing in the air and scattered them all over the floor. Tarrlok groaned and rubbed his hand over his face. Lao immediately went to his knees to gather the mess up and found Korra once again by his side helping as well.

"I'll handle these, Lao. You go." She winked.

Lao blushed deeply with a quick nod and followed Tarrlok down the hall. Noatak and Korra both watched them disappear. Once she had everything in her arms, she looked up to see Naotak staring at her. A small smile spread on his lips when she looked his way. He turned to go into his office.

Korra placed the paperwork on her desk with her heart hammering in her chest. She was sure it was going to explode through her chest cavity. Well, now would a good time as any. She was going to talk to him. She had to get this over with. 

Korra slowly crept through his open door and knocked on the wall next to it clearing her throat. Noatak slowly looked up at her as though her presence didn't need his immediate attention. "Yes?" he asked.

"I-I'm sorry to bother you, Councilman. But I wanted to speak with you?"

He nodded, "Go ahead."

"Privately?" she croaked.

The smile from earlier spread across his face again, "Of course. Please close the door behind you."

She gently shut the door and nervously approached Noatak's desk.

"Have a seat, dear." he gestured to the chair in front of his desk. "So what was so important you wanted to speak privately during work hours?"

"I know it's inappropriate," Korra sighed scratching the back of her head," But I wanted to discuss our...agreement." Noatak nodded for her to continue, "Maybe it's not a good idea. I mean, it's not that I wouldn't want to. I mean a guy like you-" she stopped herself there and could really feel the heat of his ice blue eyes burn through her,"...Anyway, you were right. I don't have it in me."

"Very well." He shrugged and went back to what he was doing before she came in.

That's it? "Okay..." why did she feel disappointed? She picked herself up from the chair she sat on and slowly walked to the door. When she turned to look at him before her fingers touched the doorknob, she couldn't help but feel the pang in her heart again. "So that's it, then?'

He looked up at her and arched an eyebrow, "Why do you ask?"

She rushed back to his desk and laid her palms on it, " 'Cause two days ago you seemed like this 'challenge' you drew up...I thought you were serious about it."

"I was, Korra." he stated flatly.

"Then...then why? Why are you okay with me backing out?"

He sighed and put his pen down. "Listen, Korra, I am a man of honor. I would never force a woman to involve herself in something she doesn't want to be involved in. If you were to want to sever this agreement at any point in time, I would hold no grudges against you."

"So, I'm guessing I'm not the first?"

Noatak grinned, "You'll be happy to find out that you are, indeed, the first woman I've approached with such an agreement. And to be honest it's been years since I've last bed a woman."

She blushed at his admittance. "Okay, well then after all of these years, why choose me?"

He got up from his chair and moved to where Korra stood. Towering over her, he gently grabbed her chin, his calloused thumb rubbing her bottom lip, and tilted her head to look at him. "You're attractive, Korra," She sighed contently hen his thumb moved to her cheek. "Despite your...abrasive attitude and your ability not to think before you say anything, you are a strong and supportive young woman. Something I don't see in a lot of people your age. It's admirable. Strong women have always attracted me. So strong to the point you almost intimidate me." He gently pulled her lower lip down. "Almost."

She couldn't think of an answer other than. "Wow." Korra blinked and quickly removed her chin from his hand, "I mean, that's nice and all but what about our job? Our age gap?"

"There's nothing stating we cannot have relations if we work together. As for the age gap, that's your prerogative if it doesn't suit you. Again, I have no means to force you into this."

Her mind ran a mile a minute. Could she be ok with this. Can she really do it, was the real question. He wasn't offering a way to take advantage of her. He was offering her company and fun. And dammit, if she hasn't wasted her time wallowing in sorrow between her consistent nightmares and avoiding romance, she sure as hell deserved some fun.

"You know what?" She announced, "I'm in. Why the hell not?!"

"So you accept?" He set himself on his desk, "Because anything goes with this, you realize."

She closed her eyes and hummed, "I'm sure. I think I could use some change."

"Don't we all." He mumbled. "Okay, Korra."

She smiled. This was going to be so different. She hoped she was prepared. He held his hand up. "Your cell."

Korra took her phone of the clip attached to waist band of her pencil skirt and handed it to him. He typed in his contact info and sent a message to himself. His cell notification went off. He handed her back her cell and faced her directly.

"First win is mine. I'll instruct you further." He turned to sit behind his desk again.

"What?! We haven't even started yet!"

"We did the first time we agreed. Here in my office the night of the gala."

"But-but I changed my mind!"

"And then you changed it back, therefore, we continue where we started."

Her jaw dropped, "Fine." She pouted.

"You're dismissed, Miss Korra." He smirked.

Later that evening when Korra opened the door to her car to head home, her cell buzzed to notify her of a new message. She opened the message screen and her jaw clenched when she read the message with narrowed eyes. He couldn't be serious.

Noatak: Touch yourself in bed tonight.

Chapter Text

Korra brushed her teeth in deep thought. The conversation in his office and the text he sent her threw her for a loop. She had come to realize Noatak was no ordinary man. He was hard as hell to read but was extremely frank. He didn't sugar coat a thing and that made him both intimidating and intriguing. For someone so serious and formal, he sure was bold in his request.  He couldn't possible be asking her to-ugh, she never could do it even when she wanted to. It made her feel nervous and honestly a little guilty for thinking about it. She wasn't sure why, but she never felt confident enough to commit masturbation. The word popped into her head and she blushed like it was a crime to think about.

Anything but that. It was like he read her like a book then used it against her. Besides, there's no way for him to know, so she could always lie and say she did.

But you're a horrible liar. Korra told herself. The confliction was irksome. At the same time the idea was sort of tempting and arousal did stir in her loins but not enough to give her the confidence to relieve it. Korra always thought masturbation was useless. Why bother when someone else could fulfill those needs for you? After some time, she dismissed investigating it any further. Her mind was made up and all she wanted was to go to bed at this point. And weather Noatak believed it or not was his problem. He was just going to have to deal.

Korra set her toothbrush back on the bathroom counter and went through the hallway to her bedroom, stretching her arms in the air as she yawned. She called Naga to follow her, the large beast jumping into the room, rolling on her back to sprawl out on her giant memory foam dog bed. Korra crawled up to Naga and begun to rub her belly while cooing at her, causing the dog's hind leg to kick rapidly. Korra willed Naga to calm down when she got to rough and went to crawl into her own bed.

She stretched her legs against the coolness of her bedsheets, relieving the aches from the day's run around. Satisfied when she was able to relaxed, she turned off the bedroom lamp and laid her head on her pillow, waiting for sleep to take her. Only it didn't.

Korra actually ended up tossing and turning for an hour. She couldn't get that message out of her head. When he first sent it, a pool of heat weighed down in the pit of her stomach and her heart raced. Who knew he could be so intense about this. She wasn't aware of the extent he was taking this challenge. Out of all the lovers she's encountered, Noatak was the most forward. Lying in bed her conflictions reemerged, steadily contemplating his request. He would make for good fantasy, she considered.

After coming to a final conclusion, she decided to just go to sleep and forget it. Her cell vibrated on the night stand just as she began to slip. Korra stirred, propping herself up in bed and moved over towards the night stand to glance at her phone. 

Noatak: Did you complete your task?

Korra grunted in irritation, frowning deeply. The last thing she expected was for him to follow up with her so soon. She sent a message back.

Korra: I did. But now I'm trying to sleep.

She figured that was that when she set the phone back down and turned on her side in her bed angrily, tossing the covers over her head, eyes shut tight. The phone vibrated again. Korra threw the covers back off and snatched her cell off the stand once again.

N: I don't believe you

Really? He was starting this with her at eleven at night when they both had to be at work in the morning?

K: Then believe what you want. I'm going to sleep.

Her phone rang this time. Oh come on! She lifted herself up and angrily pressed the answer button, "Yes?" she greeted none-to-pleasantly.

"I still don't believe you, Korra." Noatak stated on the other line. The arousal she had managed to dissipate earlier stirred once again when his baritone voice reached her ears. Her muscles tensed with a strange delight and she had to remember how to breathe. Korra almost forgot what he sounded like and she suddenly found herself missing his presence. "Then I don't know what to tell you." She huffed forcefully, trying to still sound annoyed by his late night call.

"Then describe it."

Her brows furrowed. "Describe what?"

"Describe to me how you pleased yourself."

She immediately went red, why was he so bold with his words. "Well I-I..." she stammered, "Is this really the time? We have work in the morning." It was a sorry excuse.

"You only need to tell me how you satisfied yourself. It's not all that hard. Did you think of me? Someone else? Did you use your hands? Or do you prefer assistance?"

"Assistance?" she echoed.

"Yes, pleasure aids?"

Korra's hand went over her mouth in shock. This situation was going nowhere unless she admitted her hesitance. Maybe he would cease having her continue with his request. "Look." she scratched the back of her head, "I've never...touched myself. In that way." The seconds of silence left her uneasy before he spoke again.

"Ever?" He actually sounded surprised.

"Ever." she replied sternly.

There was silence again. " Then allow me to instruct you." Noatak offered.

What kind of response was that? "Instruct me?" Korra almost chuckled; more from embarrassment than amusement.

"I will give you instructions to start and you will take it from there. All while still on the phone with me. I'm sure this is something you can accomplish."

Of all the things-this was crazy! But she agreed to this. She told him she would and Korra couldn't lie for shit. What has she gotten herself into? Korra swallowed a lump in her throat and nodded her head even though he couldn't actually see her. "Do you revel my discomfort." she joked half heartedly. 

"Not at all." He purred, Korra's thighs shifted. "Although, I do enjoy your disinclinations, it's all worth making you cave in to your restricted desires."

Korra twirled the loose thread on her comforter as she allowed his words to sink in. Did he really think she was rigid? Incapable of exploring her own sexual desires? Maybe Asami was right. She had little excitement lately, and she only ever thought her recent miseries were well deserved. Noatak was here, on the phone, willing to help her discover a part of herself that she denied all her twenty-three years. "I'll admit, I haven't a clue of what to do so you'll have to be patient with me." The build up in her throat when she slowly laid down on her back almost caused her to choke.

"We'll see." He chuckled.

When she finally allowed herself to relax and spread open her legs, Korra informed him she was ready for his first instruction. 

"Are you naked, dear?"

"No," she felt her face heat up, limbs suddenly turning to jelly.

"That's perfectly fine. Now Korra, I want you to take two of your fingers and rub them over your left nipple."

She exhaled shakenly and reluctantly placed her first two fingers over her clothed nipple. Korra wasn't wearing a bra or panties under her tee and sleep shorts so she was grateful Noatak allowed her the comfort of keeping them on. "Okay." she spoke softly, as though someone else was in the apartment listening in.

"Alright, Korra. Now circle your fingers around the areola."

She quietly did as she told, pursing her lips as her fingers went to work. A slight whimper left her lips when the nub hardened and sent a shockwave of heat coursing through her belly.

"Good girl." He said in a sultry tone." Now I want you to gently pull the nub."

Korra placed it between her index and thumb and pulled lightly, causing her to shriek. Where did that come from? She almost jerked her hand away when the attention proved to be more overwhemling than she anticipated.

"Do you feel it?" Noatak breathed softly on the other end.

Her toes curled and Korra bent her knees in order to allow her legs to spread open wider. Kicking off the comforter caused her inner muscles to clench when cool air washed over her damp cunt through her shorts. Her mind slipped into a daze and at first she wasn't sure what he was talking about but the only coherent answer she could give him at the moment was, "Yes." Her breathing beginning to labor.

"Put me on speaker phone and do the same with your other." She did just that, setting the cell next to her head and moving her other hand to give the other nipple attention. It was becoming intense. Whatever resolve Korra thought she might have had over the outcome of her earlier dissent shattered like glass and her eyes glazed over. She couldn't recall a time in which she was so sensitive. Wetness seeping through her cotton shorts, and her core clenching with fierce need as she roughly roamed her hands over her breast, shifting her body slightly to relieve the discomfort in her nether regions. Korra's previous partners were pathetic compared to the overwhelming ecstasy Noatak had her feeling . And he didn't even have to touch her.

"Are you wet Korra?" Noatak asked. Korra shivered as though she felt his very breath brush her earlobe.

"I-" She started, then blinked in confusion, stopping her ministrations. Why wouldn't she be? "Yeah." she answered as though that was pretty damn obvious.

"Check."

"I don't have to look to-"

"Check with you fingers, Korra." He interrupted impatiently. Korra detested demands with every fiber of her being, but the way his baritone voice echoed it made her crumble. She caved immediately. Taking her hand from her right breast, while she continued working on her left, she slowly slipped it into her shorts to the discover what Noatak's 'assistance' was doing to her. Fluids seeping her folds. Korra gasped when her palm skimmed over her sensitive clit.

"I-I'm really wet."

"Mmm," Noatak hummed. Spirits, don't do that!, she mentally begged as her inner walls tightened. "I want to hear you call my name as you reach pleasure, Korra."

Her fingers twitched, eager to finish herself off. Her eyes rolled to the back of her head, jaw clenched then relaxed. "Noatak..." Korra moaned in defeat. 

"Ah-ah. Not yet." He teased, as though knowing what she was attempting to do without his permission. "Now I want you to slide your finger over the nub between your legs. Slowly." He cautioned.

Korra didn't do things slow, impatience growing in her chest but she did as he told. Taking her wet fingers from her folds, she moved them to circle her clit with her middle finger, eliciting a spark in her nerves and causing her to moan louder. Her body squirmed and her thighs shut tight, rubbing them together when only playing with her nub proved not to be enough. Sweat formed on her brow and her breathing got heavier with every stroke. Listening to the other end, Korra could hardly comprehend the faint sound coming through. Was he breathing heavy too. Korra's mouth gaped, closing her eyes, the pressure in her abdomen becoming almost painful.

"Noatak! Please..." Korra begged. Spirits help her, she wasn't one for begging.

"Please, what, Korra?" He taunted. It was like dangling the key to unlocking her way to satisfaction in her face.

"Mo-." She whined. The words stuck in her throat.

"Tell me what you want, Korra." Noatak sighed, his voice heavy with lust.

The way he sighed made her wonder if he was doing what she thought he was. The image made her yelp unintentionally and her motions increased. "I want to come. I want you to let me come!" Korra called out to him.

"Not yet." He breathed. "Take your fingers and insert them into your core."

"Fuck!she yelled, overwhelmed with the fact that she was close to reaching her goal. Quickly moving her left hand from her breast, she used its fingers to tease the bundle of nerves between her legs while she slid the fingers of her right inside her folds. In and out. In and out. The sound of wet fluids loud enough to reach her ears and she wondered if Noatak could hear it as well. 

"Are you close, Korra?"

"Oh dear spirits, yes!" She sobbed, a delicious feeling coursing through her body when she reached the spot she had been craving to touch.

"I give you permission to finish. You may reach orgasm however you like."

Korra's brows knitted, eyes shut tight as she arched her back, increasing the speed of her fingers. Noatak somehow brought out a side of her she couldn't contain. It was wild like fire and she wanted him to know that he was making her lose control and she loved it. Her moans growing with every stroke she made.

Korra repeated Noatak's name like a chant. She was close. So, so close it was heart wrenching, the aches in her fingers becoming numb.

"Come for me, Korra. I want you to lose control. I was you to fantasize about the things I could do to you if I were there, ravishing you."

There it was. The breaking point. Her eyes widened then closed and her mouth formed into a perfect 'O'. Korra felt the wind knocked out of her as her walls contracted around her fingers and she came. Hard. "NOATAK!" she cried at the top of her lungs. 

She laid still, staring at the ceiling of her bedroom with half lidded eyes in the dark. Her cell being the only source of light. Her heavy breathing slowed as the afterglow began to settle. Toes numb, while her fingers slowly rode out her strong orgasm.

"How do you feel, Korra?" Noatak asked.

Shyness replaced her confidence when he spoke. "I-I..." she wiped the hair and sweat from her brow, "that was amazing." her voice cracked. Her cheeks reddening from her admittance.

He chuckled, "I'm relieved. Do you still want to continue from here?"

At first she thought he was referring to what she already did but then she realized he meant their relationship, "Yes." she chuckled nervously, still trying to catch her breath.

"Glad to hear. See you tomorrow, Korra." With that he hung up the phone.

Korra sighed in content, sleep swiftly taking her. That night her nightmares didn't seem so bad.

*break*

Korra drove to work with her mind racing and a pit of excitement forming at the bottom of her stomach as the distant view of City Hall came closer. After what happened last night, Korra came to realize how little regret she had for the relationship she formed with Noatak . Was it really a relationship? But she didn't dig into that question because the smile growing wouldn't fall off her face the whole drive. She never felt this way before.

Of course as soon as she entered the building, she immediately went into work mode and wiped the silly grin off her face. She did her daily routine and set up Tarrlok and Noatak's breakfast and coffee on their desks. She made sure to get a cup of strong coffee for herself. Despite last night's blissful encounter, she was still tired as shit.

When Noatak arrived first, like he usually did with a newspaper tucked under his arm, he nodded at her and went into his office. She kept her lips pursed to keep herself from smiling in his direction.

The day went on as normal. Lao and Tarrlok began to notice the perk in her step. Neither of them bothered to question it and went about their day. When lunch time came, Korra went into Noatak's office while he went out, bringing in some forms for him to sign before she left. She normally didn't wear her headphones, but she did while both Tarrlok and Noatak were out. Lao disagreed at first but stopped when Korra was to stubborn to listen to him.

She looked over the files carefully while humming to herself and swaying her hips a bit. She gasped when she felt a hand ride up her leg and almost dropped everything in her arms. A body pressed against her back, pushing her front over Noatak's desk. She braced herself, a gasp leaving her mouth when a strong pair of hands took hold of her hips. Korra jumped in surprise when the ache in her hips stung but she didn't voice her compliant. 

The earbuds were pulled from her ears and she looked her shoulder to see Noatak swinging them in her face. "These are not acceptable at work."

She pouted and snatched the earbuds from his hand, jerking her bottom back to push him off her so she could stand up straight. Back still against his torso. "I know that," she wrapped them in her hands, "I only listen to music when you guys are gone."

"Well, as long as it doesn't get in the way of work, I'll allow it. Only when Tarrlok or I are gone."

"Yes, Councilman." she replied sarcastically.

"Good." He spun her around, lifting her up by her sides to sit her on his desk. She almost became frantic by his actions, worried someone might see them before she realized he had shut and locked the door.

"What about Tarrlok and Lao?" she whispered warningly.

"They will not be back today. Tarrlok has business outside of the office and when I told him you were busy aiding me, he took Lao along with him."

"Wow. Bet that pissed him off."

Noatak shrugged, "If it did, he didn't bother to show it."

Korra smirked. "So...now what?"

"It's your call, Korra." He brushed his fingers up and down her exposed thigh, lightly running his nails over the smooth skin. "How will you seduce me today?" He purred.

Korra's eyes glazed over and she kicked the ballerina flat off her left foot to run her heel up his leg. She felt him stiffen a bit and her heart went wild with excitement. She took her hands and slid them up his clothed chest to rest on the back of his neck, pulling his face closer to hers. Pressing her cheek against Noatak's, she lightly blew warm air into his ear and whispered. "It's only been a day, Noatak." she slid the tip of her tongue up his lobe," do you still want more?"

He hummed and she could feel vibrations from his throat run through her fingers. "Maybe." He replied.

She smirked in triumph. Noatak's is muscles tensed under her touch. Who knew she could do this to a man. Korra gently pushed him back to see his expression, only to end up with nothing.

Really?

Noatak could see the angry pout on her face and he had to laugh," It was a good effort on your part. But did you think it would be that easy?"

Yes! "No!"

"Either way." he smirked, "I win."

"Well then how do you think I can do this?" Korra was becoming frustrated.

"In time, Korra. You've only just begun."

She slumped her shoulders in defeat only for her eyes to widen in shock when she felt Noatak rub her clothed nipple with his knuckles. She moaned, louder than she wanted to.

"It's more than just thinking it through." he started, "It's about how you talk, how you move..." he stopped to look at her, leaning just inches from her face, "How you touch." He breathed into her ear.

Korra slipped into a blissful trance, failing to comprehend his words when her nipple hardened under his touch. Next time, next time, she would definitely win.

He stopped his ministrations to place a kiss on her forehead, "Let's finish work so we could go home on time." He place her feet back on the floor and Korra stumbled as she went retrieve her shoe. He took her hand in his and kissed it. The way he looked at her, she was sure he was plotting something mischievous.

*break*

Korra did her best to do research between searching through the internet and reading numerous magazines, she couldn't find anything that she believed could work on a man like Noatak. Maybe someone like Bolin or maybe even Mako but definitely not Noatak. He was unbreakable in her opinion. She threw the magazine she recently bought onto her coffee table and kicked her bare feet on top of it. She crossed her arms over her chest with a huff. This was a lot harder than she assumed it'd be. Noatak hasn't given his next request since earlier that week, so her heart was going crazing wondering what he was scheming next for her.

A knock came at the door. Korra told whoever it was to come in and Seda came through the door holding a stack of books and magazines in her arms.

"So, why exactly did you call me to get you every beauty magazine and book about seduction I could find?"

Korra snorted, "Find? I'm pretty sure you have a book shrine of nothing but these things."

"Maybe." Seda grinned, "But seriously what's going on?"

"Umm.." Korra wasn't sure if she wanted to tell Seda about the guy they ran into at the Jasmine Dragon last year and that she was seeing him on the side, but she hadn't even told Asami yet so she decided to keep to herself, "Just some guy I'm trying to, um, draw in."

Seda's grin became wider, "Really? Who?"

"You don't know him."

"So, someone you don't want to tell me about? Boy, he must be really good looking for you to want to keep him a secret."

"Please, good looking is an understatement." Korra cracked open the first book Seda set down on her coffee table.

Seda walked over to the other side of Korra's couch to sit, "At least tell me what your trying to do."

Korra blushed, avoiding looking in Seda's direction, "We kind of play this...little game and he's already won twice. It involves me seducing him."

Seda screeched, making Korra close her eyes and cover her ears dropping the book in her lap, "Oh my spirits, that sounds like so much fun." She bounced up and down on the couch, "Who knew you'd have it in you? Okay, okay, let's get to work. At least describe what he's like or what he does like."

"Umm," Korra tapped her chin with her finger, "he's older." She wasn't going to tell her how old," He's sophisticated in a way. A gentleman when he wants to be. He seems to enjoy the finer things life. But he also seems to enjoy simple things as well."

"Oh." Seda scratched the side of her head." A man like that is a different ball park compared to the men we've dated. Maybe a simple shake of the hips and innocent rubbing wouldn't make this guy melt."

"I know, that's what makes this so much harder." Korra was starting to feel defeated. She didn't want to give up, she really liked the development between her and Noatak.

After some time of contemplating and skimming through the stack of books, Seda jumped up from the couch and pulled at Korra's arm.

"Ooh, I have an idea! Get dressed right quick."

"What? Why?"

A sly smile crept across her face. "Trust me. Let's go, let's go."

Korra got dressed. Not really caring about looking special, she only threw on a sweater and some jeans with tennis shoes. Seda dragged her out of her home to the shopping district downtown of Repubic City.

When they both stood in front of the shop Seda brought her to, Korra smacked her hand on her forehead.

"Really, a coat shop? And an expensive one at that? Why are we here? I already have a coat." She pointed to the bubble coat she purchased at a bargain store.

"No, not for that."

"Then for what?"

Seda grabbed her by the hand to follow her in, "Oh, you'll see."

Chapter Text

Korra looked at her reflection in the bathroom mirror, taking time to observe her features. Nervousness flipped in her stomach as she contemplated her options for attire that evening. Korra pursed her lips, tapping her nails against the bathroom sink. Noatak had sprung an invitation on her that afternoon when she put on her coat to walk Naga.

Noatak: Dinner out tonight. Wear something nice.

Korra panicked. She knew he would eventually want some alone time together but not so soon. Plus she still owed him from her last loss. After responding to his text, she quickly pressed on Seda's contact, hoping she could assist her in what her next step should be. Korra knew this wasn't just dinner. "Seda? Hey, so I'm kind of in a dilemma."

"Really? What's up?" She asked, concern in her tone. "Is everything okay?"

"No, nothing bad. It's about um...him. The guy I told you about. He invited me out to dinner tonight."

"And, that's the problem?"

"Not exactly. He kind of won our last round and I still owe him. I was hoping I'd have enough time to think about what my next move should be before he called me out."

"So you want to counter attack?"

"What?" Korra's eyebrows knitted, "No, that's not it-"

"Well, why not. Tonight's a good time as any to use the plan we came up with."

"Tonight? But we'll be in public!" Korra squeezed her hoodie tighter around her torso. It was one thing to play seductress in front of a man who's had many years of experience ahead of her, it was another to do it with outsiders surrounding her. This game they were playing was becoming more stressful at this point than fun.

"Even better! Look, if you don't want to, then don't. Honestly, you should stop over thinking it. But you asked for my advice and I'm giving it to you." Seda paused and Korra could hear her speaking to someone in the background and assumed it was Bolin," Got it?" she said back to Korra, "Now, get over whatever petty confliction is hindering your judgement and have a good time." With that her friend hung up, leaving Korra to stare at her cell dumbfounded. She sighed putting the phone in her coat pocket ad set out to give Naga her walk. Once she made it back home from the park, she went to the bag of purchases she made shopping with Seda last week. She pulled out the bag from Songak's Coat and Hat shop. She took a peek inside and bit her bottom lip. She wasn't too sure she wanted to make her move tonight.

Korra took her time grooming herself for tonight. Taking a shower and using  a lavender oil Seda let her borrow. Korra learned Noatak liked the scent of lavender earlier that week while they were having lunch in his office. It surprisingly wasn't strong or slick, giving her chocolate skin a nice glow. She only hoped it would make Noatak notice. Removing her bathrobe in her bedroom, she stood naked while considering what to wear. Korra then realized that Noatak didn't inform her where and when they were going. Hell, he didn't even know her address. She went to pick up her cell from her night stand when she heard a knock at the front door. Her face contorted in confusion, Korra slipped back on her robe.

She swung open the front door to see Noatak in a Navy blue suit and vest with thin white stripes. A blush graced her cheeks as her cerulean eyes scanned over his form. She picked up the scent of aftershave and the cologne she liked so much. He slid his arm from behind his back and pulled out a bouquet of blue Irises. How did he know she loved Irises?

She gratefully accepted the bouquet with a big grin. Korra wasn't much for cheesy gestures but she liked how much of a gentleman was being. She never took him for being sweet.

"Are you ready?" He asked.

"Just about. How do you know where I live?"

"I'm your employer, Korra."

"Umm, come in. I'll just be a moment." She invited, allowing him to step inside her apartment and lead him to sit on her couch and went to the kitchen to place the Irises in a vase of water. She took a peek over her shoulder walking away to her bedroom and her heart skipped a beat seeing how comfortable he was in her home. She hoped this wouldn't be the last time.

Korra shut the bedroom door behind her, willing her heart to calm down. Glancing over at the bag with the coat she purchased with Seda, Korra made her final decision.

*break*

When they arrived at a the restaurant, Noatak got out of the driver's seat of his car first to open Korra's door and paid a valet to take his vehicle. Korra stepped out in dark blue pumps and a tan button up trench coat that ended above her knees and flared at the bottom with layers. She grimaced when the cold air hit her bare legs. Her thighs slapped together when she felt the wind blow slightly though her coat, brushing an area she wished wasn't exposed at the moment. Korra's body trembled and she quickly made her way to Noatak's side to steal some of his body warmth.

Pondering over the possible outcome of her plan, Korra felt like a pervert but Seda assured her it would work. A man loves nothing more than a woman being spontaneously sexy, especially in public. 

She looked up to see the name of the restaurant and her jaw dropped. It was Yupik's Seafood House and it was one of the most formal, expensive restaurants in Republic City. Why did he bring her here? The situation was starting to feel more like a date then a actual game. Now she was conflicted more than ever. She didn't expect him to wine and dine her. All she simply desired was his company.

Noatak noticed her shiver and went to wrap his arm around her shoulders. "It's the early weeks of winter, why aren't you wearing any hosiery?"

She definitely wasn't going to tell him at this moment why." I'm fine. Southern Watertribe, remember? It's not so bad."

Noatak didn't seem convinced, "I suppose. We'll be indoors anyway." He squeezed her shoulder and led her towards the restaurant. Korra removed his arm from around her neck and held his hand to make him turn around.

"Wait," she breathed, closing her eyes and stepping closer to him before opening them back up. "Noatak, this is too much. This place is expensive and I just want to have a nice time with you. You don't have to go to such lengths when we're...you know-not dating." He raised a brow, "Not saying if we were that I'm that type of girl!" she tried to save. "I just think a place like Narook's or something would be better suited."

"Considering?" He asked.

"Considering...our relationship."

Noatak wrapped his arms around her waist, pulling her close, his gentle touch surprising her and almost causing her to stumble on her heels. He ran his fingers across Korrra's cheek, tucking a stray hair behind her ear. Korra's eyes staring into his with concern. "I understand your concerns but how I'm treating you is from pure attraction and infatuation. Being around you just doesn't involve me wanting sex but because I genuinely enjoy your company. I would like to treat you of my own accord."

Korra blushed and her heart skipped a beat. No one has ever confessed such a thing to her and any girl would fall for him just from a speech like that. And she barely knew him! She was definitely going to have to keep herself in check. "Okay," she agreed. She'll put away her worries for one night and enjoy herself.

They both entered the restaurant and a host led them to the back. He opened the door for them to enter a private room. The room had brick interior with a single table in the middle of it. It was a classic romantic setting and paintings hung around the room and candles were lit in a chandelier above the table. It was simple yet elegant. Korra's maroon painted lips parted.

"Shall we?" Noatak gestured with a sly grin. This was a lot and Korra became skeptical about his motives for tonight's dinner. He had to be up to something and his smile was a dead giveaway. Well two can play that game!

Korra made her way to the table first, swaying her hips seductively. Her movements catching Noatak's attention and he shook his head at her attempts to sway him. She had a lot to learn. He handed his coat to the host to hang on the coat rack next to the door.

"Korra, do you want to give your coat to the host?" Noatak asked.

She sat down, flattening the back of the coat to hide her naked bottom and crossed her legs. Noatak couldn't help but notice the coat riding up her bare thighs. Just how short was the outfit underneath it. Korra shook her head slowly, holding his gaze in hers after she cleared her throat to get him to look up at her face and smirked, "No, I'm fine."

Noatak gave a quick nod to the host and the two were left alone in the private room. Noatak took his seat across from Korra and began to read the menu. He was carefully reviewing the specials when he glanced over at Korra to see a mischievous smirk painted on her lips. Her eyes glazed over in something he was quite familiar with. "Is there something you would like to say, Korra?" He teased, smooth voice sending vibrations through her body all the way to her core. Keep it together. 

"Nope." she grinned wider, "Not at all."

He shifted in his seat to face her properly, opening his mouth to say something but was interrupted by their waiter arriving with a bottle of Arctic Wine. He poured both their glasses, setting the bottle on the table. The waiter bowed before he took his leave, claiming he would be back in a few moments to take their order. Noatak raised an eyebrow and turned to Korra again, "I must say, you'd think I was a piece a meat the way you are looking at me."

Korra almost cracked. But she refused to let him get to her, she was going to go through with this one way or another. The nervousness at the pit of her stomach wasn't going away but her pride was too strong to let it interfere. "Well, then wouldn't you be wasting money on buying me dinner?"

"Perhaps." He set the menu down and slid a hand up her thigh from under the table. She smacked his hand away before he could get any further and he actually seemed surprised by her reaction. But his façade didn't break for long.

She shook her head and grabbed her glass of Arctic Wine to take a sip, licking her red lips as she set the glass back on the table. Noatak knew what game she was playing and he was deeply amused. The waiter came back and took their orders. The time between when the waiter left and their food arrived, the air in the room tensed between them, their expression locked in a challenge.

The food was nothing she ever had before when it arrived but she would still choose a street vendor over this place. Although it didn't hurt to be wined and dined once in her life. Korra kept her gaze on Noatak as he watched her slowly descend the shrimp she had ordered, dangling it above her head and into her mouth and he licked his lips without realizing it. Gotcha, Korra inwardly cheered.

They were relieved of their left overs and was left with dessert. Korra almost drooled when she saw the colorful desserts sitting on a small porcelain plate.

"These are macaroons. They've become one of my favorites since I've moved to Republic City." Noatak explained.

"Oh, so you're a man who love his sweets." Korra chuckled.

"Very much."

She picked up one of the desserts, examining it before lifting it to Noatak's face. He wasn't sure, at first, what she was doing. Once he got the hint, he grabbed her wrist and took a bite out of the macaroon she held between her fingers. He took a couple more bites before licked the crumbs from her hand and sucked her fingers of any remaining ingredients. Korra moaned at the feel of his warm, thick tongue on her skin. Blood rushed to her head and her eyes half lidded.

"You know," she started as she removed her wrist from his hold, "I wasn't too sure what you had planned tonight. And honestly I thought you had something up your sleeve."

"Enlighten me. How exactly did you assume this night would turn out?"

"On your part? Honestly I hadn't a clue. But as for myself..." she placed her palms on the table, lifting herself out of her seat and made her way to Noatak's side. She bent over him, exposing her cleavage and bit his earlobe. Once he got an eyeful of her cleavage and caught the wonderful scent of lavender coming from her smooth skin, she slowly untied the belt of her coat and unbuttoned each button in anticipation. Heat crawling to her cheeks and in her belly.

Noatak expected to see an alluring outfit of some sort but when she reached the last button and his eyes bore at her bare stomach, it hit him like a ton of bricks. She opened the coat to reveal her glorious body. She was naked. Completely. Noatak's eyes widened in shock and his mouth fell open.

Korra almost fisted her hand in the air for victory but remained still as she watched his facial expression change from shock to lust.

"What's wrong, Noatak?" She asked, pouting her bottom lip.

He closed his ice blue eyes, inhaling deeply, before opening them again to meet her cerulean. He cleared his throat, "So this is what you had planned."

"You don't like it?"

"On the contrary, I like it a lot." his voice deepened at the last word and she felt arousal pool between her legs.

She grabbed his hand to place on her bare hip and he gripped it to pull her closer to him, sliding his hand up and down her side. Korra reveled in his touch, falling into a mind numbing trance that sent her on cloud nine. She swayed on her feet, mouth agape, when his finger tips brushed up between her breast and then back down to run up and down her thigh, lightly skimming her exposed clit, "Out of all the things you could've done to rile me up, Korra," He placed a kiss on the side of her belly, "This is the most erotic thing I could think of."

"Well, old man." she smirked when he narrowed his eyes at her for the nickname," get used to it because there's more to come."

"I look forward to it." He stood up, extending his arm to knocked everything off the dinner table save the arctic wine. Before she could ask what the hell his problem was, he grabbed her by the hips and slammed her on the table. Korra gasped in delight when her back came in contact with the marble table and he grasped her knees to spread her legs open, raising his brows in approval when he got a good look at her sex and bit his bottom corner lip. "But," he gently ran a finger on the nub between her thighs, "let's not forget the reward you still owe me."

He removed her coat and grabbed the Arctic Wine, pouring the contents on her bare stomach. Korra arched her back when the cold fluids hit her skin. It ran from the valley of her breast down her stomach and pooled at her belly. Noatak quickly bent over her, opening his mouth to drink up the wine, darting his tongue in her belly button earning him an erotic cry.

It slightly tickled, causing Korra to giggle a bit before breathing a moan. Her breath hitched and her pants increased when he began to nibble at her skin. The more he licked and sucked the wine from her stomach the more Korra failed to keep quiet. Noatak placed a hand over her mouth, moving up to kiss the back of it, their nose brushing from the contact. Once he was satisfied with the lust filled glare she was giving him, his mouth captured one of her breast, circling the areola with his tongue before aggressively sucking the nipple. Korra slipped her fingers into his soft, brown hair, bringing his head as close to her chest as she could get him. Noatak like the taste of her and Korra could tell by the way his grunted from his throat.

Once he licked up every last drop of the artic wine, Noatak stood up, reaching a hand out to help Korra sit up. She accepted it, feeling the stickiness of the licked up wine on her stomach as she sat up on the table. He picked her coat up off the floor and helped her put it on. She was disappointed that he stopped his ministrations so soon. He paid the tab then quickly grabbed Korra's hand and lead her out of the restaurant. As they left, she noticed he passed the valet stand to the garage one building down from the restaurant. When they made it inside the garage's elevator, Noatak pressing a button to the fifth floor, he grabbed hold of both her arms and pushed her up against the elevator. The walls made up of mirrors.

He kneeled down in front of her, lifting both her legs to lay over his shoulders. The heels of her pumps pressing against his back.

"Fuck!" she screamed when the tip of his tongue wiggled against the bundle of nerves between her legs. He sucked and nibbled at her clit, igniting a fire within Korra she didn't have the will to contain. Her hands gripped the elevator's rail so hard, her knuckles turned white. She cried out his name, lightly bucking her hips to get a better feel of Noatak's mouth. She's never acted out any sexual desires in public nor had she even thought about it but the thought of possibly being caught getting tongue-fucked made her extremely wet. His teeth clamped down playfully, eliciting a gasp. He angled her hips a bit higher to sink his tongue between her lower lips and began to lap at her pooling nectar. She removed one of her hands from the railing to grip his hair and bit her lip.

Before she knew it, the build up came forming in her lower stomach and Noatak could tell how close she was by the way her moans tuned into shrieks. She looked over at the other end of the elevator when her blurry vision cleared enough for her to see the reflection of their act, and it was so damn arousing. Then it happened. Like scissors snapping a tight wire and she came harder than she ever had in her life. Korra cried Noatak's name, her legs shaking from her intense orgasm and he drank every bit of her essence.

She didn't have time to absorb the afterglow before Noatak uncovered his face from under her coat and set her back on her feet. His breath was labored as he went to place his forehead on hers. Korra could smell herself coming from him and arousal formed in her core once again. The elevator doors opened and they caught sight of his vehicle. He took her hand and walked them towards it. She pulled the hand she was holding to turn him around to face her. His face contorted in question.

"I want my reward. Now."

"Now?" He looked around the garage for any other presences. When he seen none, he nodded for her to continue.

"Kiss me." Korra whispered.

Noatak complied and grabbed her face with both hands to press his lips against hers. She loved his lips and he tasted like macaroons, they were almost as plump as hers and his cologne enveloped her senses. His tongue parted her lips and he swallowed her moan, clashing their tongues together in an effort of dominance. Then the kiss went from aggressive to sensual. It was slow, sexy but also gentle. He was like a drug at the moment and she couldn't get enough.

Korra grabbed his buttocks and pressed his body against a cement pole. She quickly unzipped his suit pants and pushed them down before he could get a chance to protest. When she reached for his boxers, he lifted her chin to make her look up at him. He ran a thumb across her lower lip and swallowed, his adam's apple bobbing, "You don't have to do this." his voice rasped. 

Korra's hummed at the way his voice made her tremble. She grinned. "Why, Noatak, are you trying to refuse me my reward?"

He furrowed his brow.

"The kiss was a request but this," She grabbed his clothed erection while trying not to show the shock on her face when she got a good measure of his manhood, "is my reward for my last win."

Korra kneeled down bringing his boxers with her and immediately took his erected organ between her painted red lips. Noatak spread his fingers through her bob as she circled her tongue over his tip and then moved up and down the base earning herself a low growl. She moaned in approval sending vibrations over his cock. Korra stroked the base, moving her mouth in the opposite direction of her hand movement then coming back to meet her fist. Noatak felt himself getting close and warned Korra to remove herself. She looked up at him without complying and shook her head moaning. Damn her lips felt good. Noatak began to thrust his hips slightly as she brought his member deep into her mouth until his tip hit the back of her throat. After she refused to take her mouth off of him after he warned her once more, he pushed his cock deeper down her throat and released, groaning as Korra swallowed his come.

"Korra!" He staggered a moan, he felt her throat contract as she drank him.

She stood up, wiping her mouth with the back of her hand and smiled brightly at him, pulling his pants and boxers up along the way. Noatak was so overwhelmed, he lazily grabbed her face with both hands to press a deep kiss on her lips.

"Korra," he whispered in her ear after they parted," I think you've turned my world upside down."

She gave a short laugh as he flushed her body against his to bring her into a tight hug. She wrapped her arms around his neck and rested her head on the crook of it.

Chapter Text

Asami stood in the coroner's office in a daze. Tears swimming in her eyes, trying to break free but they just wouldn't fall and all she could do was swallow the hard lump in her throat. She looked at the handkerchief she was offered in her hands, and twisted it around her fingers. She wasn't sure if today was real. People moved around her in blurs and she felt like she was sinking in a sea of faces. She didn't call either Iroh or Korra in hopes that the phone call she received several hours ago wasn't true.

She was getting ready to run some errands when her cell rang. She didn't expect a police officer at the other end nor did she expect them to ask her to show up at the coroner's to identify a body. Asami's\ heart sunk into her stomach and hoped it wasn't who she thought it was. But when she arrived to take a look at the body the medical examiner pulled from the cooler, she felt vomit surface to her throat and she choked.

It was him. After a year of abandoning her and the company without a single word or clue of where he's been. Hiroshi Sato laid still with his eyes closed and his skin pale. Naked and stiff under a pure white sheet. Asami's world came crashing down. Just as hard as the day he left her. She bit her lip and closed her eyes, praying to the spirits it was someone else. Anyone else. But when she opened them again, tears blurring her vision, she could see it clearly was him.

The coroner officer standing next to her put a hand on her shoulder, "Miss Sato?"

She didn't give him her attention at first even though she had heard him.

The coroner gulped and looked at the medical examiner standing on the other side of the body. The examiner nodded and the coroner averted his eyes back to Asami.

"Miss Sato, I know this must be hard, but we need you to identify if this is in fact, Hiroshi Sato."

Asami almost yanked her shoulder from his touch but decided she no longer wanted to look at the corpse that was once the man she looked up to and loved with all her heart. Despite his evil actions, all she wanted was for him to tell her the truth and she would have forgiven him. She would've still wanted him to face justice for what he had done to those people and their families but she would still love him none-the-less.

She slowly removed her shoulder from the officer's grip and shakenly sighed from the breath she had been holding. She nodded her head in sorrow and looked the coroner in the eyes, "It's him...This man is my father, Hiroshi Sato."

The coroner nodded to the examiner, who had began to close the body back into the freezer. "I am so sorry for your loss, Miss Sato."

Asami somehow had the strength to roll her eyes. She knew what people thought of her father as well as law enforcement. She doubted he truly did.

*break*

Korra hummed in delight to the music playing off her speakers. She had hooked her phone on the dock and started to clean her house while swaying her hips to the music. She couldn't get the smile off her face after the last two weeks she's been spending with Noatak. Naga could only tilt her head at the sudden change of character in her owner. She rarely cleaned the house to such an extent nor has she ever enjoyed doing it.

Noatak and Korra have been spending a lot of time together, making sure to keep it strictly professional when in work mode. But during breaks and outside of work, they seemed to go wild over each other. He would ravish her with kisses and touches and she would find little ways to make him crack. They hadn't played too much of the challenge in a while but it didn't seem to cross her mind as much. They haven't had intercourse yet. She and Noatak enjoyed the little things they did together. Weather it was going out or talking or touching. All of it sparked a connection that neither of them seemed to have experienced with anyone else. Their interactions were palpable.

Korra was mopping her kitchen floor when she felt a hand tap her shoulder and she jumped, smacking the mop head against the face of the intruder.

"Gah! Korra, it's me!"

"Bolin?" Korra rushed to her linen closet to retrieve a hand towel once she realized who she attacked. "Sorry, you spooked me."

"I knocked on your door several times but I figured you couldn't hear me over the music blasting inside your place. I could hear it as soon as I stepped off the elevator." Bolin rubbed the soapy water off his face with the towel, relieved that none of it got in his eyes.

Korra apologized and went to turn off the music and take her phone off the dock. She checked to see if she had any missed calls. Eight from Iroh and six from Bolin. They also left her several voicemails and texts.

Her eyebrows knitted and looked at Bolin, "What's going on?"

Bolin laid the towel on Korra's end table and sighed, "It's Asami. No one has seen her since yesterday."

"Asami?! Since yesterday?! And I'm just now being told?"

"I wasn't aware til this morning. Iroh called me telling me he couldn't get a hold of you. He got a call from Asami telling him she would spend the night here at your place but when he didn't receive a call from her this morning, he freaked out. He called her with no answer then called you. He couldn't seem to get out of work so he asked me to come here."

"This doesn't seem like her. Something's wrong." Korra clicked Iroh's contact number on her cell.

Iroh picked up on the first ring, "Oh, Korra. Thank goodness. Is Asami with you?"

"No. Iroh what's going on?"

"I don't know!" The panic in his voice began to rise, "She said she was spending the night at your place, which was odd enough as it was. And now I don't know what's going on. She's not picking up her cell and-"

Korra could hear the deep sob on the other line.

"I-I'm leaving work! I gotta find her."

"Me and Bo will head out, okay?"

"Okay. Please keep me updated."

"Of course." she hung up the phone. She turned to Bolin to let him know to call Seda and meet them at Central park but he seemed distracted by something that was on his phone.

"Bolin?"

"Korra," he rushed over to her to show he what was on his screen," you gotta see this."

She looked at the headline on Republic City News website. Bolin pulled up an article: Hiroshi Sato's Body Found At Shores Of Mo Ce Sea.

*break*

Iroh left the docks when Korra had texted him a link. When he skimmed through the article, it hit him. Now it all made sense.

Asami had always lived a life of luxury and was guarded by her father. When Iroh first started dating her, he sympathized with her oblivion to the rest of the world. But he was proven wrong when she lost Future Industries and her father abandoned her. She never allowed herself to fall any further, using what little she had to bring Future Industries back on its feet. Blood, sweat, and tears. The company wasn't making much profit at the moment, but Asami never gave up and she was proud to start somewhere.

But this was a whole different ballpark. When Asami's mother died, she had her father to help her through the loss he was also going trough. Now she had to come to terms with the man who was hated by his involvement with the Equalist Movement and his death. That's something no one in her circle understood.

All he could do was pray to the spirits that she would be safe.

Please be safe.

*break*

(At midnight)

There were whispers among the brothers and sisters in the underground base hosting those who fought for The Revolution in Republic City. Whispers about Hiroshi Sato.

Rumors spread that his death was caused by government officials who finally got their hands on him. Some say, due to his strange disappearance the last few months, that he probably got caught up with the wrong people who finally did away with him once they got what they wanted. Some say he betrayed the Movement and was caught by a group of their own. Whatever the rhyme or reason, he was gone. Leaving his weapons and mechas as an imprint to his ingenious inventions.

No one was probably more grateful for his participation than Amon and his Lieutenant. Hiroshi put millions into the movement not including the vast amount weaponry. Even though everyone got word of his death, Amon nor the Lieutenant had informed anyone on the details of the matter. But they trusted their leader. At least most did. Hiroshi wasn't always well liked among the Equalist group. Word spread that he was turning certain members against Amon. Stating that he was not aggressive enough to lead the movement. That his tactics didn't instill enough fear in the council and it only got worse over the last year that Tarrlok's task force began to raid and arrest Equalist. Some began to stray, doubting Amon's capability as a leader.

Hell, for all they knew, Amon was behind his death. But weather or not that was true, the Revolution must move on.

Amon sat behind his desk with his hands clasped together and his body still. He had just read today's paper. Hiroshi's death was devastating none-the-less. He was a beneficial ally and asset to the Equalist Movement. Their goal to completely eliminate the council and give the people of Republic City voting rights would soon come to play.

Of course, he wasn't oblivious to Hiroshi's actions and the rumors that spread about his betrayal. Numerous times Hiroshi had used his weapons behind Amon's back to test in public areas. Amon hoped, in the beginning, that there would be no casualties. But the more he got caught up in the rallies and the worship he received from his followers from the ground he walked on, he knew casualties were part of the effort to win the war.

That is until the Explosion at the Arena.

When Hiroshi came to Amon with the news that he had tested a valuable weapon on the Republic City Arena, and with extreme pride, Amon was filled with absolute anger. It was one thing to be aware of Hiroshi's attempt to overthrow him but it was another when he took it upon himself to harm innocent people. Especially to prove Amon wrong.

It was with that, that Amon knew he couldn't risk taking the lives of others to get what they wanted. He had to change strategy. Hiroshi was infuriated by his dismissal but because Hiroshi had already invested a majority of his money into the movement and was being hounded by law enforcement, Amon knew he couldn't really go against him let alone leave. Amon understood that Hiroshi suffered the loss of his wife to Traid Members and that law enforcement hardly made effort to find his wife's killers as well as the justice system when they were finally caught. The Council Members at the time were well paid off and the people involved only received a slap on the wrist.

Although today's Council Members weren't so much the same, they still failed in preventing Traid Members and High Class Citizens from unjustly pushing the lower class to the brink of homelessness, starvation and death.

His thoughts were interrupted as his Lieutenant walked into his office. "Amon, sir, are you ready for tonight's rally."

"Yes, Lieutenant." His masked face showed no expression and his ice blue eyes looked forward as he got up to walk out of the office with his Right Hand not too far behind him.

Hiroshi's death might cause some disturbances and doubts among his followers, thus the reason for tonight's Rally. Lucky for Amon, he was a master of manipulation.

*break*

(Earlier that evening)

Asami sat barefoot on a bridge in the countryside right outside Republic City. She took a swig of the bottle of dark liquor she purchased at a rusty gas station on her way here. She had walked without knowing where she was heading. She had walked for miles even when her feet ached. She didn't stop in spite of her body's signal to rest. She had left her car at the police station. She didn't sleep and the thought of food made her stomach churn. Asami knew Iroh and her friends were freaking out over her absence. Her phone was on silent and she hadn't talk to anyone since she told Iroh she was going to Korra's last night.

She knew if she heard their voice she would crack like fragile glass.

Asami wiped her nose with her forearm and sniffed. The cold air bit at her skin but the liquor kept her warm. She set the bottle of liquor on the steel railing of the small bridge and stood up. She spread her arms wide to give herself balance and walked back and forth. Her red painted toes tip toed on the cold steel before laying her foot flat against it. A chilly gust of wind suddenly hit her and she almost lost her balance. Once Asami regained her footing, she bent her knees to grab both sides of the railing. Hot tears sprung down her cheeks before she realized she was crying.

She hated herself. She hated herself for loving and missing him so much when he didn't deserve it. But she still would have done anything to see her father smile at her again. So she screamed. She screamed until her lungs burned and her voice cracked.

When Asami seen lights in the distance, she quickly wiped the tears from her face and sat back down. She was in no mood for people. Several had pulled over on her way here to ask if she needed help. She cursed under her breath when the approaching vehicle stopped behind her and a stranger stepped out of the driver's side. She almost told the person to scram when she felt warm envelope her shoulder's.

"It's a cold night tonight." The deep baritone voice of the stranger pointed out.

"..." all Asami could do was hum, shoulders stiff when the smell of cologne wafted her nostrils, It wasn't bad but the affects of the alcohol she consumed made it unpleasant. 

The stranger picked up the bottle next to her and whistled, "This stuff is pretty strong even for a woman. You must've had a really bad day." He shook the half empty bottle.

"What's it to you?!" Asami spat without bothering to look at the stranger.

"Because I too have had loss like yours."

Asami finally turned to face the stranger and was greeted with ice blue eyes and a broad smile the made wrinkles under his eyes. He was extremely handsome for his age.

"Can I give you advice?" Asami turned her face forward again, "And it's only up to you weather you choose to accept or not. I'm honestly no good with comforting women, but at least let me tell you this; Surrounding yourself with loved ones is the best way to overcome loss."

Asami pursed her lips.

"I'm not going to tell you to go home or ask you if you'd like a ride if you don't want me to. But at least call your family, or friend, and let them know your okay and you need them."

Asami leaned over to look at the tiny stream running under the small bridge and then turned back to the stranger and nodded slowly.

"Good." He said, walking to the driver's side of his car. He opened the door and turned to called out. "And you can keep the coat."

She look down at the coat laying over her shoulders. The car drove off into the dark country road, leaving Asami to contemplate his advice. She pulled her cell from her purse and clicked a contact.

"Hey, baby..."her voiced cracked, "I-I'm fine." She assured Iroh she was okay after he asked her what felt like the hundredth time. She gave him her location and hung up the phone. Asami looked at the sky and finally started to feel the cold numb her toes. Her brows knitted when she thought of the stranger that stopped to check on her. She finally recognized him as the guy she had seen with Korra the night of the gala.