Fire lord Zuko never knew why it took so long for his wife to take a shower. She was a water bender after all.
Tomorrow he'd be leaving early in the morning to visit a new mining project that would bring many jobs to the fire nation. He was expected to be there for a month. He sighed impatiently as he waited for Katara to come to bed. He had one last night with his wife and he planned to make the most of it.
Finally, he heard the water flow stop and he immediately closed his eyes and pretended to be asleep. He heard the bathroom door open and Katara walk out. She seemed to be taking her time…almost as if she knew.
Zuko smiled when he felt weight pull down on the bed and waited for the moment.
Wait, he thought, wait… NOW!
Zuko grabbed Katara by the waist, pulling her into a tight embrace on top of him.
"Zuko! Ughhh, you monster!" She cried as she hit him in the chest. When her husband only laughed at this, she said "What are you trying to give me a heart attack?"
"No," he said, regaining his serious attitude, "I was just trying to surprise you one last time before I left,"
He regretted saying this the second it went out of his mouth because his wife's cheerful face was replaced by a sad expression.
"Don't remind me," she said rubbing circles on his chest, where she had previously hit him.
"I'll be back in no time, you'll see," he said, while gently rubbing the back of her neck with his hand, "in the mean time…"
Zuko leaned and pulled Katara closer as he started kissing her neck, while still holding her on top of him. Katara couldn't help but smile and roll her eyes at her husband as she pushed him back.
"Zuko, you're leaving tomorrow on a long journey. You need your rest." She said.
He arched an eyebrow and said, "You do not doubt of my skills to fulfill my duties as Fire Lord, do you?"
"I think you're more than capable to do your duties as fire lord, I just don't want you sleeping during your briefing meetings tomorrow," she said.
He smirked, knowing that she'd fallen for his trap and said, "Well then you should know that one of the many duties of the fire lord is to please the fire lady,"
" Zuko…" said Katara, trying and failing to give him a stern look that meant no.
"I won't see you for another month," he said, kissing her on the cheek. He heard her sigh.
"Why are you so irresistible?" she asked him.
Zuko smiled at this and took it as a yes. He kissed her and was glad when she kissed him back.
"Wait, Zuko…wait" she said, giggling when Zuko refused to stop. "Promise me you won't be sleeping during your meetings,"
"Oh, you talk too much woman," he said resuming his activities.
"Oh, wait, Zuko…Zuko!" said Katara, slight yelling at the last word.
"Now what?" asked a frustrated Zuko.
"Didn't you hear that?" asked Katara.
Zuko strained his ear to hear …that. And sure enough, a knock was heard at the door.
Immediately, the small fire place in the bedroom, flared violently and Zuko slid Katara off him and stood up.
"Oh, Zuko, if it's that new guard, please don't yell at him," Katara pleaded, "he's already terrified by you"
I told them not to disturb us, he thought, if the Fire Nation is not under attack then I WILL incinerate them
Zuko didn't bother putting a shirt on. He put on his most menacing look and opened the door.
At his right, was a royal fire nation guard, eyes wide with fear, looking as if he'd been forced to do something indecent. He was staring apologetically below him and Zuko followed his gaze.
Right in front of him stood his 4-year-old son, tears pouring down his face.
Immediately all anger in Zuko was replaced with concern as he knelt down so his face was at level with his son's.
"Satoru, what's wrong?" asked Zuko.
Satoru cried as he put his two little arms on his father's broad shoulders.
"Satoru, are you hurt? What's wrong?" asked Zuko again.
"It's just…" said Satoru as he looked at the guard besides them. Zuko knew he was always shy around strangers so he pressed his son against him and patted his back.
"Satoru, what's wrong? You can tell me…" he said.
" I…I had a nightmare daddy!" he sobbed.
A sigh of relief escaped Zuko and he couldn't help but smile at his son's worry. He looked at the guard besides them and saw that he was smiling too, and were probably sharing the same thought…kids
"Son, it was just a dream, it's alright," said Zuko, trying to comfort his son.
Immediately Satoru leaned back so he could see his father's face and said, "Bu-but there was this octopus and-and he tried to wreck your ship and he wanted to eat you-"
"It was just a dream, Satoru, everything's fine," said Zuko.
"And-and I don't want you to go on your trip daddy," he said.
"Satoru, I have to go, and I promise you that nothing will happen to m-" started Zuko.
"But what if the octopus tries to eat you!" pleaded Satoru.
Zuko looked at his son. Satoru had inherited Katara's round eyes and yet their color was light hazel.
"Satoru, it was just a nightmare. There won't be any octopuses and nothing; nothing will keep me from coming back home, okay?"
When Satoru didn't say anything, Zuko added, "And I need you to be brave for daddy, while I'm not here, you are the man of the house. Can you do that? Can you be brave for daddy?"
Satoru sniffed and nodded. Zuko smiled and rubbed his son's back.
"Alright, can you go to bed now?" asked Zuko.
"No…" he whispered, "Can't I sleep with you and mommy?"
Zuko chuckled at this and kissed his son on the cheek.
"Of course you can, come on" he said pulling him up and carrying him inside the Fire lord and lady bedroom.
Inside, Katara had already put on her robe and was about to go to the door to see if anything was wrong when she saw her husband carrying their son.
"Satoru? What's wrong sweetheart?" she asked.
"He had a nightmare so he's sleeping with us tonight," said Zuko, as he put him down on their bed.
Satoru snuggled himself in right in the middle to be sure to be next to both his parents.
Katara turned to look at Zuko and smiled at him.
"You're a wonderful father, Zuko," she whispered, so only he could hear, and gave him a small peck on the cheek.
Zuko tugged her arm and grabbed her by the waist and said, "That deserves more than a kiss,"
"I guess you'll find out in a month," she said and laughed at the pained expression on her husband's face.
"Aren't you coming to bed?" asked Satoru.
"Yes, Satoru," said Katara as they each climbed on either side of the bed.
"Goodnight mommy, goodnight daddy," said Satoru finally closing his eyes now that his parents were by his side.
"Goodnight Satoru," chorused Katara and Zuko.
"Aren't you going to say goodnight to each other?" asked Satoru.
"Goodnight Zuko," said Katara.
"Goodnight Katara," said Zuko.
It was definitely, thought Zuko, a last night well spent.