Brainchild spawned from a previous conversation and the episode 8 'The Puppetmaster' (and also this idea is suppose to lead into the events of episode 9). I have not written any Avatar in a while, so, forgive me if I'm rusty of the characters. Beta read by the talented and lovely pekori (I still owe you). I couldn't believe there was phrase in Avatar scarier than Face Stealer. But Bloodbending…I shudder to think of how deep you could go into the evil of that practice. So, Cat, in dedication to our discussion, this goes out to you. I know that your tastes lean more towards Zutara but, sorry, this is hinted more to Kataang. Cover your hearts, shippers, we're going in!
Disclaimer: ATLA belongs to the original creators…but I kidnapped Aang…if you want him Fire Lord, you'll have to pay me in bootlegged YYH and Princess Tutu episodes…
The once proud Waterbender shivered violently, though wrapped in a ball of seal-fur blanket, unable to feel the raging heat of the campfire. Unable to warm, vile, disgusting blood.
Her companions tried their best to make her comfortable: Toph created a large fortress of earth around them to keep the fire in; Sokka managed to cook her some delicious fruit and meat; Aang offered to keep by her side, though the caramel–colored digits wrapped in his pale ones were dead to any kindly squeezing.
Thankfully, the edge of the musky, brown blanket sheltered her darkened face from any curious glances or gentle stares. She did not care for sympathy or pity. She was tainted.
Her powers healed the Avatar but now they could control the willpower and muscles of others, soldiers, innocents; anyone was a victim to her. Even the people Katara most cared about in the world.
Her crystal blue eyes peeked open meekly. A few inches away, a small brown mouse scurried unhurriedly across the ground, possibly to join its family or just surviving on the land it knew. Her lips thinned. Her free hand stretched out under the blanket, fingers flicking outward.
Mere seconds passed, then the mouse let out an inaudible squeak and stilled, pointing its whiskers up into the air confused.
Pressurize the abdomen.
This time, the mouse shrieked painfully as it wiggled on its hind legs. Katara burst into revolted tears, turning her reddening face away as the mouse fled limping. Immediately, she was gathered into someone's arms as two pairs of footsteps became closer.
She sobbed quietly into soft dark red fabric, nose half-buried into a shirt that smelled soothingly like Aang. From the corner of her vision a scratchy dark hand like hers wiped the tears from her cheek and touched her unkempt hair, accompanied by her brother's gentle but urgent voice.
"Stop beating yourself up over this, Katara. You can use this thing to your advantage against the Fire Nation; we can win this war. They won't know what hit them."
At the sound of another tormented cry, she noticed that Sokka spoke no more that night. She guessed that Aang must have looked pretty intimidating to shut up even Toph. His embrace around her tightened uncomfortably to catch her attention; she lifted her face a little so that he could lean into her ear.
"Bending is a part of you. Good or bad. I lo—"
She felt the strangle rise in his chest, he had choked the last bit he had wanted to say. Katara figured that it couldn't have been that important.
"I-I mean, I know this power scares you but…I know that you wouldn't do it to intentionally hurt anyone. You're not evil, Katara. You could never be."
He smiled nervously down at her. The Waterbender showed her appreciation by returning the hug and a tiny "thank you." The blanket around her shoulders slipped off as she she moved closer into Aang's lap.
"You were trying to say something earlier. What was it?"
The body she clung to flushed hotly; the sudden action coming from the additional, intimate source of heat or...undecidedly something deeper.
"N-Nothing. Nothing important right now."