Author: Eyes for Eternity PM
Zutara week day 3! "You, just as every other Fire Lord in history, are vulnerable to corruption. But your friends aren't. Katara isn't."Rated: Fiction K - English - Hurt/Comfort/Drama - Zuko & Katara - Words: 483 - Reviews: 1 - Favs: 1 - Published: 07-17-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8330136
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
zutara week 2012 | day three | transcend
Zuko closes the door, leaving behind a sleeping Katara and their presently unnamed infant. He wanders aimlessly through the halls of the palace for what feels like hours.
His feet come to a stop in the throne room and he sees his father behind a wall of flames. His father, who scorned him. His father, who burned him. His father, who banished him from the country because he was nothing more than a nuisance.
"You are afraid that you'll turn into him, Fire Lord Zuko."
"Don't call me that."
"It's your title now, nephew. Surely you've become accustomed to it after four years."
"I will never get used to it." Silence breaks the conversation and Zuko falls to his knees before the empty throne. The dark room is too eerie without vibrant flames illuminating the pillars; too empty without a ruler.
"I can't do it." Iroh chuckles and Zuko glares harder at the stone floor.
"Of course you can." They are both on the ground, facing the front of the chamber.
"No. I don't know if I can keep myself from–" He stops short before the thought is finished; if he says it aloud, there's no way to take it back.
"Katara will not let you become a monster."
"My mother was the strongest person in the world. She let him turn into a tyrant."
"You give your mother too much credit." Zuko grits his teeth.
"Why do you think Ursa was banished that night?" He squeezes his eyes shut and turns away.
"Your mother was a wonderful, caring woman, but she was not without fault. She loved your father too completely, and she was not born into a world where peace was feasible. She saw no difference in whether it was Ozai on the throne or Azulon. She saw that she could preserve your life and disregarded the possible consequences."
"You could've challenged him."
"I was a different man then, Zuko. I would've been no better than your father."
"So why am I so immune?"
"You aren't. You, just as every other Fire Lord in history, are vulnerable to corruption."
"But your friends aren't. Katara isn't." Zuko knows this is true. Katara has worked too hard to attain peace; she wouldn't throw it away to be able to live in a queen's luxury. Aang promised to kill him before he ruined everything (though whether he would have the strength to, when the time came, Zuko didn't know).
Iroh stands to leave.
"My mother. Roku was her grandfather. How could she let it happen?" The old man smiles sadly.
"You of all people should know that it is simple to follow a different path than that of your ancestors. To transcend. Unfortunately, it works the other way around as well."