Disclaimer: I do not own Avatar or the song "Love Will Find a Way" from The Lion King 2, lyrics by Tim Rice.

Author's Note: This is a request from ilovekataang. The song is short and kind of vague, but I chose to interpret it by filling in some of the missing time near the end of the finale.

Love Will Find a Way

In a perfect world,
One we've never known,
We would never need
To face the world alone.

"He'll come back," said Katara firmly as she and Zuko made their way to the Fire Nation. "He has to."

She held onto this thought as they drew closer to their goal. At this point, she wasn't even sure why she had agreed to come on this mission. Her heart and soul were across the ocean, where other battle lines were being drawn. Where, she hoped, Aang was even now preparing to face Ozai.

The worst part of the whole situation was the knowledge that she had sent Aang into this confrontation alone. It had been within her power to change that, to give him the support he asked of her, and she had not. She wanted – no, needed – the chance to make up for that.

Maybe that was why she had gone with Zuko. She felt that she, too, deserved to be alone, away from those who loved her.

They can have the world.
We'll create our own.
I may not be brave or strong or smart,
But somewhere, in my secret heart,
I know love will find a way.

Unfortunately, Katara was not able to put Aang out of her mind enough to concentrate on the business at hand. When Azula declared the Agni Kai, and Zuko accepted, it seemed that Katara was to have no part in this after all. She allowed her thoughts to wander, which was exactly what she had thought she could avoid during this venture.

As the lightning came toward her, Katara thought she saw her brief life streaming in the flickering energy. Her last thought before the dark blur intercepted the shot that should rightfully have struck her was a hope that the spirits would take pity on her and give her an opportunity to try it all again. She was definitely resolved never again to let someone she loved go without telling him what he meant to her.

It was a shock almost as strong as the lightning itself to realize that she had not been harmed and that Zuko had risked himself for her. Another injury to weigh on her conscience.

Anywhere I go, I'm home,
If you are there beside me.
Like dark turning into day,
Somehow we'll come through.
Now that I've found you,
Love will find a way.

Blinking in disbelief, Katara's throat constricted as the understanding of what had just happened sank in, but she didn't have long to dwell on it. Ignoring her brother as no longer a threat, Azula began pursuing Katara, and it was all the waterbender could do to stay alive. In a way, it was a relief to have something so intense to focus on. It prevented her from thinking about the suffering she had caused recently, whether intentionally or accidentally.

At last, Katara managed to trap Azula with some creative waterbending and chain her to a sewer grate. Then, she returned to Zuko's side and did her best to heal him. It wasn't a perfect remedy, but she did manage to save his life. He thanked her, but considering what he had done for her, it really wasn't necessary. She told him she should be thanking him instead.

She could only hope that Aang's less tangible wound would prove as easy to heal.

I was so afraid.
Now I realize:
Love is never wrong,
And so it never dies.
There's a perfect world
Shining in your eyes.

As time dragged on with no word from the front, Katara grew more and more nervous. She had pushed Aang away because she feared losing him, and now she was trying to figure out how she would cope if he truly didn't come back. On the other hand, even if he made it through, there was a chance that he would keep his distance from her to preserve his own heart, and she wouldn't blame him for that. Belatedly, she wondered – was it better to lose him to an act of war she couldn't control or through her own actions?

Eventually, Katara was notified by one of the earthbenders she'd freed from prison that the Avatar was approaching. She went to anxiously wait in the courtyard, and when the group appeared, she had eyes only for Aang. She had to know whether he would give her another chance.

When he finally raised his eyes to meet hers, she smiled slightly with relief. His fatigue showed there, but also a warm greeting to her. It was not over.

And if only they could feel it too,
The happiness I feel with you,
They'd know love will find a way.
Anywhere we go, we're home,
If we are there together.

Katara was unable to exchange any words with Aang for a while because she was tending to her brother's injuries and helping the others find places to settle in the palace. When she finally had time to seek Aang out, she realized that she had no words to offer. Instead, she rushed at him, needing to feel that he was really there, that he had returned to her.

"I'm sorry," she whispered, over and over. "I'm so sorry."

"For what?" he asked, sounding truly perplexed. Katara wanted to laugh and cry at the same time.

"For what I said, and didn't say, and did, and didn't do," she replied, knowing that she wasn't making sense and not much caring.

"What are you talking about?"

"That night, at the theatre--"

Like dark turning into day,
Somehow we'll come through.
Now that I've found you,
Love will find a way.

"Don't worry," Aang interrupted her, disengaging from her embrace and leaving her feeling empty. "I don't want to force you into anything."

"That's what I'm trying to tell you," she told him forcefully, willing him to understand. "I was wrong."

"You were?" Aang looked confused.

"Yes. About a lot of things." Deliberately, Katara put her arms around him again. "I want to be with you, Aang. Now, and tomorrow, and as many days as you'll have me, this is where I want to be."

"I think I can learn to live with that," Aang murmured into her ear, finally returning her embrace with real confidence. Katara could feel his happiness through their contact, and she sighed contentedly.

"I just wish I'd figured it out sooner," she responded.

"We're here now," he said, and that seemed to say it all.

I know love will find a way.


Member of the Boomeraang Squad: charleegirl, , Liselle129, Strix Moonwing, Avatarwolf, MormonMaiden, libowiekitty, Snows of Yester-Year, La Vixen de Amor, chocolatecoveredbananacheese, Aangy, and honorary member SnakeEyes16

Author's Note: I know it's a little like some things I've done before, but this seemed the neatest way to tie everything together. For those of you who haven't noticed but might be interested, I have resurrected The Path Ahead and intend to carry it through the end of the third season. *shameless plug*

Review responses:

airnaruto45: Well, maybe not those exact words, but yes, I know what you mean.

Fusion Blaster: Yeah, it was kind of weird that we didn't see more of Ozai. We didn't even get any indication that his reputation as a fearsome warrior was deserved until the very end. He always stayed behind and let others do the fighting for him.

Shinobi Bender: Actually, Lucas is more of an idea man than a writer (he only wrote A New Hope, after all), so I'd argue Zahn is even better. He is very good at making the characters sound authentic, and I've found that some of his style has crept into my writing.

trekker4life: You're welcome to check it. Both Muppet Christmas Carol and Muppet Treasure Island were presented by Walt Disney Pictures. I try to watch Muppet Christmas Carol at least once every holiday season, and I just had to find a way to use that song.

AuroraandRosalieWannabe: Carol of the Bells? I never would have thought of that one. Most of the time I hear it, it's instrumental.

nutshak: I don't really have any idea what you were talking about with the egg and dinosaur stuff, but I know what you mean about certain songs fitting the story so well that it is hard to believe the song came first and was completely independent.

Vanille Strawberry: Considering the season, I don't know that it's all that strange you'd just seen some version of A Christmas Carol. Anyway, thank you. I might continue to use my songfics to explore minor characters while I work on The Path Ahead with the major characters.