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Ghost

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Tahno hasn't quite been the same since that day at the arena. He wants to blame it on Amon, because the responsibility for everything should be put on that dead bastard. And perhaps that was true, at least at first, but it's not anymore. It's her fault.

Because she left a piece of herself behind inside him.

And now all he sees are pieces of strident blue and yielding bronze and unkempt russet. A world colored by the chaos of her – all broad, passionate strokes and fine details painted in delicate vulnerability – where he goes, willingly, to drown.

He briefly wonders if the others feel this kind of connection - the swirling of her essence in their veins, the pull of her gravity on their soul. It disturbs him because there are so many, were so many just like him, and he doesn't want to share.

Because he wants to leave the whole of himself inside her.

Tahno shoves the thought out of his mind before it can turn his stomach in on its self. It's not that hard, not really. Not when she has decided that it's time to divest him of his clothing. Not when she has already dispensed with her own.

Not when her calloused fingers curl around him and drive him to distraction.

She smiles at him, all sharp teeth and an innocence she doesn't even realize is there. Because it's not what people normally think of, the simple chastity of the flesh, but rather it's the marrow-deep hope in all that is good and lovely.

She thinks she sees some of that in him and he doesn't have the heart to shatter that belief. And so he lets her have her way with his body - his mind, his heart – and watches as her eyes light up, playful and curious, her hand nearly working him to completion. She leans forward, lips trailing to whisper in his ear, "I think I'd like to waterbend you."

Then it's his turn, the ebb and flow, and he neatly flips them. Lithe, heavy muscle presses into feminine curves, the pieces click into place, and he at last feels whole. Shuddering breath and half-whispered entreaties punctuate their coupling as the languid pace he set gradually increases. Tahno wants to take it slow, to prolong the moment indefinitely, but biological imperative takes over and his control is gone.

His world shatters in a kaleidoscope of brilliant light.

ooOoo

Slate eyes open, bleary with the lingering hold of sleep, to the unimpressive view of his dingy ceiling. His bed is empty, the expanse not occupied by his own form cold with disuse. Tahno reluctantly sits up, flinching at the overwhelming brightness filtering in through the unadorned windows. It reflects across his bare apartment, amplified. He is surrounded, whitewashed walls as far as he can see. There is nothing personal in his space - nothing to treasure - and nothing to break up his reality.

There is only ever color in his dreams.

Because she – the avatar, the hero that brings balance to the world, Korra – isn't here. She's probably off fighting whatever new evil has reared its ugly head, waking up in the arms of that damned firebender, all the while being completely clueless.

Korra has, in saving him - restoring him - left him bereft, painfully aware of the lack of pigment that has been hiding there all along.

And the irony – the fucking irony of his life – is that she'll never know just how much she has changed him.