She knows it's Tenzin the moment he arrives. It's hard not to—she's barefoot, poring over her maps of the city in her study. The bison's landing sends a tremor through the entire household, a heavy six-footed thump followed by swift footsteps leading up to—
The door crashes open with a burst of air. 'Lin! There's something—'
'Tarrlok arrested Korra's friends, I know,' Lin says, not looking up from the map in front of her. No polite knocking, no beating around the bush and pointless chitchat—Lin almost prefers it when Tenzin is this agitated. 'It's all over the papers. And besides, I have my eyes and ears in the department.'
Lin's badge is no longer hers, but those are still her people. She'll be a hog monkey's uncle before she abandons them to the likes of Tarrlok and his cronies in the Council.
'Saikhan is worst chief ever.' This time, she does look up: Tenzin's all puffed up and about to explode, his face an alarming shade of red.
It is, she admits, one of the small pleasures in her life—watching Tenzin fly off the handle, losing that barely-held-together Airbender serenity of his.
Not today, apparently, because he deflates just as quickly. 'But that's not why I've come here,' he says, and now he looks just plain miserable. 'Korra's missing.'
'She's what?' Lin says, although she's not really surprised. She's already reaching for her cables—not standard police issue, the modified Beifong edition—and her armor.
'Her bed wasn't slept in. We found Naga in an alley near the Council. And the Council building appears to have been vandalized sometime last night.' He looks her straight in the eye. 'You can understand why I don't want to inform the police about this.'
'Of course,' Lin says shortly. Of course.
Saikhan, she knows, is no pushover. But Tarrlok is a master manipulator, and the easiest way to get through to an honorable police officer is playing on his fears. His prejudices. The Equalists have his officers in custody—have, in all probability, stripped them of their bending and left them maimed, mutilated. Lin can understand.
'I should've known she would go after Tarrlok,' Tenzin says, his shoulders slumping in pathetic defeat.
'Yes, you should have,' Lin tells him, slipping on her gloves—another Beifong modification, three metal claws instead of one. She would very much like to try it on one of those Equalist machines. Or on Tarrlok, as it where. 'And your White Lotus guards are useless.'
It's no more than what she herself would have done when she was younger, more prone to thinking with her fists.
'If something's happened to Korra... I'm never going to forgive myself,' Tenzin says, burying his face in his hands.
'Nothing's happened to Korra,' Lin says sharply. 'That girl can look after herself. She's the Avatar.' And when Tenzin says nothing, she says, 'We're going to find her,' a little softer.
Korra is his responsibility. Lin knows this feeling.
Tenzin's expression is bleak, but he draws himself a little straighter. 'Then what are we waiting for?'
Predictably, he's less gloomy once they're on air, on the way to the Air Temple Island to get the polarbear dog. Looking at him—more relaxed, now, steering Oogi onwards with expert hands—Lin finds she can't resist this one dig, 'How did you manage to lose all of them within a day?'
Tenzin groans. 'When all of this is over, I'm shifting to the South Pole,' he says.