Author: krimrose PM
"What's with the costume? Does it really help with the whole 'I'm a vigilante' thing, or is it a lifestyle choice?" This will be the last time he saves a school girl from the angry triad. —MakoKorra. AU.Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Romance - Mako & Korra - Words: 1,938 - Reviews: 9 - Favs: 31 - Follows: 3 - Published: 07-09-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8302468
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
summary: "What's with the costume? Does it really help with the whole 'I'm a vigilante' thing, or is it a lifestyle choice?" Mako cringed. This will be the last time he saves a school girl from angry triad members. —MakoKorra. AU.
rating: T, for swearing
disclaimer: I do not own.
notes: So the setting is still Republic City, it's just, the characters lead different lives. This is written in preparation for me seeing The Amazing Spiderman, today!
"… What's with the costume?"
Mako clenched his jaw. As he had thought, saving stupid school girls gave him migraines.
"Does it really help with the whole 'I'm a vigilante' thing, or is it a lifestyle choice?" The girl in his arms stared expectantly up at him, her blue eyes flickering in the darkness.
Mako would have dropped her—and ran—but she had her arms cleverly wrapped around his neck. She didn't look like the type to easily let go. So instead, he focused on getting them out of the bad side of town, through intricate alleyways and back roads. The process would go a lot smoother if she could just shut up.
"So what's your superhero name? 'The Man in the Red Scarf?'" She was referring to the red scarf that was used to cover the lower half of his face and his otherwise normal clothes—not much of a 'costume' at all, really. "'Red Scarf,' for short? Or maybe—"
"Mako," he interrupted, his voice thin like his patience. "My name is Mako," he clarified through gritted teeth.
The girl looked thoughtful, mulling over the name. "That's kind of boring," she concluded with a nod.
Mako felt that maybe he should stop this whole 'protect the city beneath the cloak of darkness' thing. He should probably stop saving people—correction: stop saving stupid school girls that have nothing better to do than to wander into the Triple Threat Triad region at two in the morning. Mako reminiscence briefly on the earlier days when he saved cats stuck in trees and helped old women cross the streets with their groceries. Of course, he grew out of that when he turned ten, and sought a more fulfilling lifestyle of bringing down drug lords and saving girls marked to be sold into prostitution.
But Mako never asked for this.
He never asked for her.
"Boring?" he scoffed, mildly offended. "Sorry my life isn't as eventful as yours, Miss I'm-going-to-parade-into-Triple-Threat-Triad-territory and what? Flaunt your short frilly dress and have them come escort you to a whore house?" When the words left his lips, Mako felt his conscience slap him across the face.
He had let his frustration get the better of him. He had been too harsh.
"Short?" The girl looked incredulous. "The dress is knee-length!"
Since she didn't look like she minded his insult—unless, she really was an idiot and didn't get that he had insulted her—Mako decided it would be alright if he asked a few, more proper, questions.
"What were you doing there anyway?"
"Oh, you know," she shrugged offhandedly, "Breaking in my heels."
Mako looked unimpressed. "At two in the morning?" he questioned, his eyebrow raised skeptically.
"I couldn't sleep," she admitted.
"Whatever," Mako muttered dismissively. It must have been his imagination because for a moment there—before he intervened to save her—it seemed like something big was going down.
But it was probably nothing.
They were a few more alleyways from reaching the market streets when the girl stopped him. "Mako," her voice was oddly soft, "you're bleeding."
He hadn't noticed, but as he carried her the gash on his upper left arm—an attack he had taken on her account—had opened up. The blood had slipped down and smeared her mocha skin a crimson red. "You should put me down," she suggested, easily letting go of his neck and slipping lithely to the ground.
She had long before discarded her heels and she trembled slightly as her feet touched the damp concrete of the alleyway. Her formidable six-inch heels dangled in her left hand, as she used her right to examine his wound.
Mako finally realized how tired he was from carrying her. How tired he was, in general.
"Let's sit," the girl stated, pulling him along gently to a dry space beneath a dim lamppost.
They settled and among the many frills of her cream-colored dress, she tore a long strip of fabric. She expertly wrapped his wound with the cloth. It immediately soaked through and the girl unwaveringly tore off another strip.
Mako tried not to smile—he didn't want her to get any ideas, though he wasn't really sure what kind of ideas she would get. You just never knew what conclusions school girls could come up with.
As she worked, Mako studied her from the corner of his eye.
She was beautiful. Her mocha skin contrasted the brilliance of her bright blue eyes. She had long limbs and her dark locks flowed to her mid-back. There was a certain intensity to her that glowed beneath the surface of her skin.
"What?" she demanded, her lips a wry smile. She had caught him staring.
Mako stumbled for words. "Uh, your, uh—name," he said dumbly. Clearing his throat, Mako formed a more coherent sentence. "What is your name?"
The girl grinned. "That's none of your business, Mako," she replied as she tied the final strip of cloth around his arm.
"That's not fair," Mako stated, almost like a child, "You know my name. My real name." And just for good measure, and to see if she would laugh, he added, "Do you know how detrimental that is to a superhero?"
She did laugh and her eyes crinkled and flickered with a kind of warmth that washed gently over him. A warmth that he hadn't felt in a long while.
Maybe saving her wasn't such a bad—
Mako didn't finish the thought as light flooded the alleyway and the hum of red sports cars cut off the ends of the single path.
They were surrounded.
Mako watched with disdain as the car doors opened and men filed out—ugly and jeering. He pulled the girl up and placed himself protectively in front of her, as they both watched the men approach, making monstrous shadows that danced along the walls.
The alleyway was maybe two-meters wide and the triad was cornering them fast, sauntering in maliciously from both ends.
What are his chances in winning this fight?
What are his chances in escaping with the girl?
What are his chances in keeping them busy so that the girl can escape?
It could be possible.
Mako tried to fight of the tiredness of the night's adventures, which had gone from a routine patrol through the triad territory—meant to be inconspicuous—to saving a girl chased by the triad themselves.
What had she gotten herself into?
Mako prepared his stance for the first wave of attacks, but the men stopped about five feet away, forming a wall to either side of them.
The leader who Mako had caught glimpses of before, on early patrols and missions, was at the forefront.
That was odd.
The leader never steps out personally. He always sends his triad dogs to do the dirty work. So what the hell—
"Just hand over the girl," the boss stated, almost like a compromise. "Hand over the girl, and you can walk away."
Mako narrowed his eyes. He had done way too much to these guys for them to let him off scot free. 'Walk away'—was that some kind of joke?
But the boss didn't look like he was lying, which made Mako wonder, what the hell could a school girl do to pissed off the freak'in triad boss?
The leader sensed Mako's reluctance. "It's like a 'get out of jail free,' card," he offered. "You give us the pretty girl, and you're free to go. I swear it on my life."
It was tempting, but—
"Sorry," Mako apologized snidely, knowing full well the repercussions of declining a chance to leave, "but I don't do things halfheartedly."
The boss nodded grimly before making a quick movement with his hand and sending the members of the triad upon them.
He should have just gone to bed early that night.
One moment, Mako was emitting fire from his clenched fists, dodging attacks and shielding the girl. It was when he received the blow to his abdomen—hard earth crushing his ribs—that a gush of wind surged through the alleyway and the members of the triad went sailing into the air.
Before Mako could register what had happened, the girl had caught him in her arms. Her strong arms that held him effortlessly even though he was sure he weighed more than her.
"Shit! That's the fucking Avatar!" was the last thing he heard before the earth beneath them rose like a pillar and a cool wind eased them into the night sky.
Mako woke up in a hospital bed.
The frills that had decorated his arm had been replaced with proper bandages. Apparently, he had suffered two broken ribs and series of cuts and burns here and there. He had been asleep for a day and a half.
And aside from the 'pretty girl' that brought him in and disappeared mysteriously, he had had no visitors.
His mind was still reeling from the events of the other night.
With her knee-length cream dress and her six-inch heels, and her stupid school girl questions, and her pretty, pretty face, she was the freak'in Avatar.
From the newspaper Mako had read when his head had finally stopped pounding, the Avatar—a mysterious and powerful figure of the Police Force, able to master all four elements—had returned important documents, containing outlines of highly destructive weaponry, stolen by the Triple Threat Triad, to the United Republic Council.
So that's what she was doing there.
That made sense. (Not everything, but most things.)
Which then, it dawned on him, that she hadn't needed his saving at all. Rather, perhaps he had been a nuisance to her, because from the start, she could have taken on the triad alone.
If she wanted to.
But she chose not to.
Because—and this mortified him to no end—she didn't want the triad to know she was the Avatar. But by saving him, she had practically shouted it out to them, and the news will spread, and then every rotten criminal on the streets of Republic City will know that the Avatar is a seventeen-year-old girl.
Her cover was blown.
As Mako ran his fingers through his hair—he was such an idiot—he heard a knock on the door.
He turned and saw her, leaned against the doorway, a small smile playing on her lips.
He looked at her apologetically.
She grinned, shrugging lightly.
"So," she drawled, strolling over to him, looking smug, "The underground society is probably exchanging rough descriptions of me, trying to draw out horrible portraits and distributing them to the bad guys of Republic City. And what not." Her blue eyes flickered in their warm, slightly mischievous way. "Do you know how detrimental that is to a superhero?"