Captive and Captor
Disclaimer: I don't own anything.
A/N: This story has been floating around in my brain for a while now. I welcome flames but please tell me why you don't like. Thanks to anyone who reviews. I appreciate the criticism. As to Mai's fate, I think Azula will be very angry with Mai for refusing to fight on the grounds that she didn't want to get dirty as seen in the Secret of the Fire Nation.
She loved torture. The smell of blood upon the floor was as invigorating as anything else. She stared at the bloody mess that he had become.
She had caged him and kept him away from all those dear to him. She had made him forget the foolish water-bender, her idiotic brother, and the rude earth-bender. She made him forget his past.
She could kill him and end his misery. All it would take would be one swift blow of lightening or a raging fiery inferno. She enjoyed torture more and this new method was perfect.
He had been twelve when she captured him. She had been fourteen when she had been named heir to the Fire Nation. Her father was dead. Assassination is easy to accomplish when you have greater power. She was a fiery goddess compared to her father's ant-like fire-bending skill. One quick blow and she had been crowned fire lady.
She had conquered the known nations. She had destroyed her opponents. She had imprisoned her brother and uncle. She had bought off her rivals. She had manipulated the court and yet she was lacking in one crucial area.
She wanted no husband. She would not be ruled over by a man and she would not tolerate a weak partner. She wanted a strong bender. She wanted a man she respected.
She was no longer the young girl of fourteen. She was a grown woman of twenty. She had grown and blossomed. She was beautiful, intelligent and deadly. She had rewarded Mai and Ty Lee for their loyalty.
Mai was given a quick death. She did not please her mistress. Azula found Mai's behavior during the failed attempt at Ba Sing Se to be disagreeable. Mai thought she could flaunt her disobedience in front of Azula. She was sadly mistaken. Death by fire had been Mai's punishment and the fire lady had been the executioner.
Ty Lee had proved herself worthy of the fire lady's favor. Azula let her friend return to the circus. She made Ty Lee an important official at court. Of course she didn't completely trust the circus girl. Ty Lee was constantly followed and well aware that her life depended on Azula's good favor.
The fire lady, Azula, found herself in front of the cell that she had come to know best. Her brother and uncle were of little concern to her. She could kill them at any time but she did value the old man's advice. Her brother was one of her favorite torture subjects. They weren't her favorite prisoners. No, she preferred the young man whose spirit she had broken.
The guard bowed when the fire lady approached. He had seen her anger before. Azula was known for quickly killing those who displeased her.
"Leave us," she ordered.
Once the guards had left she approached the shackled young man. He changed since she had captured him six years ago. He was taller and his smile had disappeared. His eyes were lit with fire and he glared at her with evident hatred and tainted affection. She was his only human contact.
She approached him with no caution. What did she have to fear from this broken man? He may hate her but he always worshipped her. She had played the perfect game with him. She had nice and gentle at certain times making him weaken. Then she had gone back to cruelty and constant torture.
"Have you missed me?" she purred.
"You have been gone for a while," he said.
His voice had deepened over time. She preferred this young man to the boy she had captured. That boy had been weak but this man was worthy of her. She moved closer so that her lips were millimeters from his.
"I've missed you, Aang," she said.
"I find that hard to imagine, Azula."
"I miss our talks. You are far more interesting than any of my councilors. They are concerned that I have no heir and insist that I marry."
"They wish for your happiness."
"They wish for no such thing. All they care for is themselves. They want money and the guarantee that one of their sons will be fire lord," she spat.
"Is there no alliance that would be to your benefit?" he asked.
"I can only think of one."
She turned to leave him. He was desperate for her to stay. Who knew how long it would be before she came to see him again.
"Where are you going, Azula?" he asked his voice lined with loneliness.
"To my quarters," she replied.
She headed up to the ornate rooms. Her decision had been made. She waited three days before acting out her plan.
She entered the lower levels of the dungeon. She had ordered the healers to clean him up. She made the maids give him a bath and make sure he ate properly. Once again she dismissed the guards.
"How are you, Aang?" she asked.
"Better," he said.
He dared not thank her for her kindness. That would anger her more and cause her to leave him alone again.
She approached him her fire lady robes more revealing than usual. She saw his eyes roam over her.
Good at least I calculated something right, she thought.
Her golden eyes met his calm ones.
"I spoke to you last time of an alliance," she said skillfully.
"You spoke of the need for an heir," he replied.
"I have selected the father for my children. I want more than one heir and I want them to be powerful."
"I'm sure you have found someone to your liking, Azula."
"I have indeed. But he will not share the throne with me. Our law forbids that an outsider become fire lord."
He couldn't believe what he had heard. Azula was known for not favoring outsiders.
She gazed at him. Her golden eyes forced him to look towards her. Hungrily she kissed him.
She had kissed him before. She had come to him in almost nothing. It had all been a game. He expected her to stop but she didn't.
She took initiative and forced him onto his pallet. She remained with him and gave him everything. By the end of their time together he knew every inch of her.
She slept beside him content for a few hours. At last she left him.
He was shocked when this incident occurred more than once. She came to him every afternoon at midday. She never differed in her schedule. She would speak to him and then he would make love to her.
One day she stopped coming. He did not see her for several months after that. He was not put into the same degrading torture as before. It was worse though.
He was lonely and he missed her. In some twisted way he had come to care about her. He had come to love her.
The months passed and finally she came again.
"Hello Aang," she said.
"I did not think you would come back," he said.
"That is simple nonsense," she said as she kissed his lips.
He did not respond to her.
"Did you not miss me? Do you not want me?" she asked.
"You will leave me again," he answered.
"I did not leave you by choice. I had to make decisions."
"Where have you been, Azula?"
She nodded to the nurse in the corner. The nurse carefully brought the bundle to her mistress.
"Leave us," Azula ordered.
"Come here," she ordered Aang once the woman was gone.
Aang approached her.
"Sit," she commanded.
He did as he was told. Gently she handed him the bundle. A little face peered up at him.
"This is your son," she said unwaveringly.
"What's his name?" he asked his gaze still on the child.
"Gyatso for your former master," she said.
"He is that indeed."
Aang stared at her.
"You care nothing for me and yet you chose me as the father as your child. Why?"
"I wanted a strong bender. As for not caring for you, you are mistaken. I would be with no other. I respect you."
"You do not love me."
"Who is to say that I don't?"
"You've never told me."
"I do not speak of my feelings. You of all people should know that. I can not let you go to prove that I care for you. The other nations would rally to you and rebel."
Azula turned took the child from him. She yelled for the nurse and handed the baby to the other woman.
"Take my son to his chambers. If anything should befall him your life is the price," she said to the maid.
"Y-yes milady," the maid stuttered.
They were left alone in the cell. She turned to leave him after a few moments of silence. As she was near the door she turned back and sat across from him.
Gently she whispered in his ear, "Do not worry my love. I will be back soon."