Title: Could we have been…
Summary: What if Zuko had talked with Aang at the end of "The Blue Spirit." Could their relationship progress into something more as they traveled all over the world because of that one little moment? References to Seasons 1, 2, and 3 (up to episode 312)
Disclaimer: Avatar the Last Airbender belongs to the gods of creation known as Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko. I'm just burrowing it all for a spell.
AN: This was a story requested by a friend, Kunitsu, on the forum Aarinfantasy. There will be references to episodes, and direct quotes, up until episode 312. This chapter is based on "The Blue Spirit."
Warnings: Zuko/Aang yaoi. Sexual situation between minors.
Zuko groaned as his eyes slowly opened, the light from the rising sun blinded him for a moment and he couldn't see. He blinked his eyes a couple times, watching as the world slowly came into focus. His head ached, the pain centered on his forehead where he vaguely remembered being shot with an arrow as he was taking the Avatar…
He turned his head to the presence he realized was beside him, his vision finally clear as his eyes settled on the young boy sitting on a tree root beside him in the forest they were in. His eyes narrowed ever so slightly as he gazed at the bald monk.
Zuko had expected to wake up in a Fire Nation jail by now, not safe and sound deep in the forest. Why did he save me, Zuko wondered as he looked at the Avatar. He could have just left me there, and he would then no longer have me to worry about chasing after him and his friends. Why?
"You know what the worst part about being born over a hundred years ago is? I miss all the friends I used to hang out with. I used to always visit my friend Kuzon. The two of us, we'd get in and out of so much trouble together. And he was from the Fire Nation, like you."
Zuko locked eyes with the boy as he turned to face the banished prince, small smile forming on the boy's face as they looked at one another. No one has looked at me like that, he thought nostalgically. No one except Uncle Iroh and my…mom.
"If we knew each other back then, do you think we could have been friends too?"
Zuko didn't say anything right away, and was about to force the kid to run away by bending a fireball his way but then something made him pause. He felt a part of him react to the kindness bestowed upon him by the boy who was supposed to be his enemy. A part he hadn't felt since his mother was taken from him so many years ago. Maybe this kid was worth opening up to. It's not like there was anyone else close to his age that he could confide in on the ship. And no matter how much his old Uncle Iroh begged, there were some things Zuko just couldn't talk to the man about.
The prince slowly sat up, keeping his eyes trained on the Avatar for any sudden movements the kid might make. He brought a hand to his forehead and rubbed the tender spot, contemplating how to answer the inquiry.
"I don't know," he honestly answered, hands falling into his lap and he stared off into the wild woods around them, determining the Avatar wasn't a threat at that moment. "If I wasn't the prince then maybe we could have. But a hundred years ago the war was starting. If I was a member of the royal family it's unlikely I'd be able to fraternize with…the enemy."
Zuko's head whipped around as the soft patter of someone lightly seating themselves beside him sounded and he found a blushing boy looking up at him with a shy smile. "I didn't think you'd answer me," the monk answered softly, sitting with his knees drawn up and arms wrapped around his legs, mirroring the position he was in previously.
"I don't know why I did Avatar. I guess that hit to my head did more than knock me out," Zuko said, looking startled as the boy laughed at his unintentional joke.
"Heh I guess so Zuko. And it's Aang by the way."
"My name is Aang, not Avatar."
Zuko was taken aback by the casually uttered statement. He looked away and his forehead wrinkled as he contemplated. For some reason, knowing this kid's name made him look different to Zuko, if ever so slightly. Before when Zuko was hunting him so he might reclaim his honor, the Fire Prince was able to overlook the fact that he was just a child. By not knowing his name Zuko was able to detach himself a bit and could ruthlessly hunt the Avatar without his conscious, though quiet as of late, to interfere. Now this boy had a name.
He glanced at the smiling boy beside him. Can I actually go back to hunting him like before, now that I know his name, the prince thought, feeling a little helpless at the unexpected feelings he was having.
"What's wrong Zuko," Aang asked, looking genuinely concerned as he gazed at the prince.
Zuko was silent for a few moments as he thought, opening and closing his mouth a few times in futile attempts to express everything jumbled up in his head. Finally he said, "Things are different now."
"Yes. Between you and me."
"What do you mean Zuko."
"I…now that I know your name…you are no longer just the Avatar to me…and that makes me question what I am doing."
"What are you doing?"
"I'm trying to capture you."
"Yeah I already got that part, what with your ship showing up literally every place we stop for a break. But why?"
"Because I need you to reclaim my honor and to return home."
And even as he said it, the words felt a little hollow, compared to how the reasoning sounded yesterday as he prepared himself for going in disguise to save the Avatar from Zhao so Zuko could be the one to capture the boy. He looked away again, feeling angry at his complicated feelings.
The two of them were silent for several minutes as Zuko warred within himself over his conflicting ideals and his conscious.
"Hey Zuko can I ask you a question," Aang spoke up, twirling a piece of grass above his hand with his air bending.
"Sure, whatever," Zuko huffed, no closer to figuring out what he should do now that he and the Avatar were…whatever they were now.
"Do you have a girlfriend," Aang asked, dropping the piece of grass he was spinning around in midair to poke his fingers together in embarrassment.
Zuko turned shocked eyes on the bald monk, eyebrow rising in astonishment at the unexpected change of topic. He coughed uncomfortably and scratched the side of his face as he answered. "No. I haven't had any interest in girls yet. Besides traveling by sea with a crew of men doesn't leave many options."
"Why in the world do you ask?"
"…well…uhh…there's this girl I think I like but I'm not sure, cause I've never really been around girls before. So…"
"So…you were thinking I might help."
"Why me? Why not that wannabe warrior traveling with you?"
"Hey be nice. Sokka's not a wannabe, he's…kinda…talented. And I can't ask him cause the girl I think I like is his sister. Isn't that awkward?"
"Yeah I suppose."
"I just thought you could help me."
"And why should I?"
"…uhh…because you're a nice guy?"
"I think I've proven contrary over the past few months."
"Well we're talking right now aren't we? With no fireballs exchanged."
"…true. Alright, fine. If I can help I'll try."
And Aang then threw himself at the prince, embracing him tightly in affection. Zuko felt a reluctant flush stain his cheeks and he stared with wide eyes down at the tattooed head below his own. He hadn't been hugged in…so long. He slowly brought his hands up and awkwardly patted Aang's shoulder and back, clearing his throat uncomfortably. And just as quick as it happened Aang pulled away and grinned brightly up at the Fire Prince.
"So how do I know if I like, like her, or if I just like her."
"Umm…well…I guess you can try comparing the way you feel about her to the way you feel about other people."
"Yeah I kinda tried that already…
"Well sorry. That's all I can think of."
"…hmm…oh I know. Maybe instead of comparing how I generally feel maybe I should compare how I feel in different situations."
"You know, like when she hugs me or kisses my cheek I feel all happy inside. Maybe if someone else does it to me and then I compare the two maybe then I can figure out if she's special or not."
"That's a rather good idea. Who do you have in mind to test this out with?"
Aang smiled, and slowly looked around the clearing they were in and Zuko curiously looked around too. Then the Avatar turned his soulful grey eyes on him and Zuko felt realization slam into his face. He looked over each shoulder furtively, trying to find a nonexistent person in their vicinity, and then he frowned and shook his head just as Aang was grinning and nodding his head.
"No way," Zuko cried and he jumped up, waving his hands in front of him to ward off the boy.
"Come on Zuko," Aang said, still smiling and standing up to face the prince.
"It won't work," Zuko cried, trying to reason with the rather stubborn monk.
"We hate each other; it won't be a good comparison."
"I don't hate you."
Zuko froze, hands falling to his side and he turned confused golden eyes on the innocent, young boy in front of him. "You don't," he whispered hoarsely.
"No. Especially not now. I don't think I ever did. I may have been mad at you at times but I never hated you. I don't hate anything easily. Something I learned from the monks. Do you hate me?"
And staring into those shinning grey eyes Zuko felt a little more of his tough, cold exterior chip away and he lowered his eyes. "No, I don't hate you, not really. I tried to make myself hate you so it was easier to…do the things I've done recently," he murmured, staring at his black boots.
"See then it'll be a perfect comparison. Come on Zuko. Come here so you can hug and kiss me."
Zuko's eyes nearly bugged out of his head at those innocent words. If he was any less of a man this situation would be taken advantage of. But he was a prince first and foremost. He sighed in defeat, wishing he wasn't the kind of man who went through with a promise to the end. He took a couple hesitant steps forward, a part of him still wondering why he was still here and not running back to his ship.
He came to a stop before the grinning boy. He cleared his throat, shifting uncomfortable before he shook himself. The sooner he did this, the sooner it was over with. He reached out, slowly folding one arm around the shorter boy's shoulder and the other snaking around his waist. There was a moment as they stood apart from one another, just a few breaths between them before Zuko pulled Aang closer into an embrace.
The hug was awkward for all of two seconds before Aang sighed, hands coming to wrap around Zuko to return the warm embrace. Zuko was startled by the fluttering in his stomach and the warmth that spread through his body, and he blamed it on the fact that he had not had contact like this in years, it had nothing to do with the particular person curled up in his arms.
The two benders clutched one another close for several minutes. A leaf breaking off a branch broke the lull Zuko had fallen into and he abruptly pushed Aang away, clearing his throat uncomfortably. Aang didn't seem all that startled by the sudden movement; he just stood at arm's length away from Zuko, a curious expression on his face. Uncomfortable silence filled the clearing and Zuko decided to break it because it was killing him not knowing what Aang was thinking about.
"Well? Umm…how does it compare?"
"No…no. No it was really nice…I felt…this will sound strange, but I felt safe…and really warm inside."
"…I…felt warm too."
He had no idea why he was answering but it seemed his inhibitions had flown the coop and his mouth was spouting whatever popped into his head before consulting Zuko. Aang's large, shinning eyes locked with Zuko's and for the first time the prince felt truly powerless, not even his strict, cruel father could make him feel this way.
"Now a kiss," Aang asked quietly, small hands lifting to rest on the forearms of the prince still grasping the boy by the shoulders.
Zuko gulped, knowing his pride wasn't going to let him get away from this situation because he had promised to do what he could…and a kiss was a harmless thing.
Using the grip he had on the Avatar's shoulders he pulled the boy back against him, and subtle shivers ran through both their bodies at the slight contact. Zuko leaned down before pausing, lips hovering over the smooth right cheek of the kid in his arms. He glanced out of the corner of his good eye at the young monk, watching in slight amazement as Aang's lips trembled and parted ever so slightly, eyes slipping closed as he leaned into Zuko's hold. And for some reason that made Zuko feel like the tallest man on earth.
Finally he closed the gap between his lips and the boy's cheek. Aang's cheek was so smooth, like the soft fabric of his pillow back on the ship, and was in stark contrast to his own slightly chapped lips. He pulled back after a moment and licked his lips, trying to smooth them out some. He saw Aang's eyes had opened and were staring at the prince's lips, licking his own in a copy-cat move before he blushed and looked away.
And with that sweet, innocent maneuver Zuko was lost, and for the first time in his fifteen years, Zuko allowed himself to be guided by his emotions…and his libido.
Zuko wrapped his arms tight around the boy, startling Aang with the sudden passion in the prince's movements, and he crushed his lips to the monk's in an awkward lip lock, neither having any experience with true kisses. But instincts can go a long way.
Zuko held Aang tight as they kissed, closed mouths pressing and sliding against one another as the two young men kissed under the afternoon canopy. Aang's arms found themselves wrapping around the Fire Prince's waist, holding on as the new, unfamiliar, but not unwelcome feelings bombarded his young body. He shivered as his lips were gently nibbled on, a sensation that flowed warmly through his body. He gasped as a wet tongue touched his now plump, sensitive lips and he moaned a heartbeat later as that same tongue dipped into his own mouth and timidly touched the monk's tongue.
Aang didn't understand what was going on but he didn't want it to stop. He felt lightheaded, safe, and oh so warm. He pressed closer to the strong body in front of him, the only thing he could think of to do in this unexpected situation. He felt a little overwhelmed with the intense kiss bestowed upon him by his enemy…acquaintance…friend?
Aang had realized right away when he felt Zuko's lips on his cheek that this was way different than when Katara kissed him. Aang felt strong and weak all at once, toes curling in anticipation and his belly tightening in…whatever this feeling was. He was only twelve years old, still unacquainted with the workings of his body so he could not find words to describe what was happening. All I know is that I don't want it to stop, Aang thought helplessly, feeling his own mouth start responding to the prince's demanding kiss.
Suddenly Aang felt himself bent back and his body came in contact with the leaf bed he had made for the unconscious prince hours before. Their sloppy kiss finally broke and they huffed and puffed while staring at one another. Aang was spread out, small body completely covered by Zuko's larger build as the prince knelt on his hands and knees above the boy.
Slowly Zuko lowered himself, not really understanding why he was doing what he was doing, they were both so young, and especially Aang, but he couldn't stop himself now. He didn't want to stop now.
In that one simple kiss Zuko had felt so good and alive. He didn't want that feeling to go away now that he had discovered it once again.
He let his body lay down, easily covering the monk's body, supporting most of his weight on his elbows, and letting out a trembling sigh as he brought their hips together. His gold eyes locked on the young boy's face as surprise registered and a startled moan slipped past those rosy, swollen lips. The prince moaned quietly, relieved he wasn't the only one truly affected by this situation. Zuko slowly rocked his hips, trembling and pressing his lips together to hold back his pleased sounds, his erection sliding deliciously against the young cock beneath him, the only minor barrier was the clothes on their bodies.
Aang's hands gripped his shoulders tight as his body shuddered and Zuko had never seen anything so beautiful. He had dreamt of this face many times, envisioning his success of capturing him and bringing back, broken and in chains to his proud father, but now the prince was sure his dreams of the Avatar were going to morph into a new kind.
"Zuko! What…what's going on…what's happening," Aang gasped out, head tossing from side to side at the overwhelming sensations, hips instinctively beginning to rock back against the prince's.
"You've never pleasured yourself," Zuko asked, stopping the movements of his hips, pulling a frustrated whine from the boy beneath him.
Aang blushed at the question, closing his eyes, hands tightly gripping the black fabric adorning Zuko's shoulders. He slowly shook his head back and forth, opening his eyes to look hesitantly up at the prince.
Zuko felt something within him swell, most likely his pride, thinking about how he was the first…the first to do all of this to the Avatar. It was his first time in this kind of situation as well but he had at least relieved some tension doing what many men on his ship did to one another or by themselves in dark corners of the corridors late at night. His first orgasm had scared Zuko but it had felt so good he had done it many more times after. Meditation never made him feel as calm as he did after a good round of self pleasure.
He smiled a soft smile down at the embarrassed monk under him, shifting his position so he was kneeling between Aang's spread thighs. He put a silent hand on the boy's chest, pushing him back to his laying position when he tried to sit up. He kept a small smile on his face, trying to reassure the monk looking curiously up at him. When Zuko knew Aang was going to keep still he reached out his hands, and gently started disrobing the Avatar, feeling his blood rush with every inch of skin he exposed for his gold eyes to explore.
He had the brightly blushing monk naked in moments. Zuko chuckled quietly as Aang tried to modestly cover himself, glancing wildly around their surroundings for any unwanted stares. The prince leaned down and kissed the boy softly, trying to calm him. He felt the body spread out beneath him loose its tension as Zuko nibbled on Aang's bottom lip and a rush of pride swelled in the prince's chest.
And feeling bold Zuko reached down and wrapped his hand around the boy's small erection. He muffled the loud moan the Aang made, keeping their lips locked as he brought the Avatar to his very first orgasm. His large hand created a warm tunnel for Aang to thrust into, feeling the boy's hip movements get jerky as he neared his completion. He lifted his other hand and teasingly touched one pebbled nipple, having discovered one night in his bunk that touching himself here was quite pleasurable. He hoped it was the same for Aang.
And it was, because that light touch was enough to cause Aang to finally experience his first orgasm. He screamed as he came, small dribbles of come sliding from his body onto Zuko's fist and his trembling stomach. He almost sobbed as the pleasure shook his young body and he clutched Zuko close to him desperately, kissing the prince sloppily.
Aang shivered as his body calmed and he collapsed back onto the leaves, looking up at Zuko with glazed grey eyes, a content smile staining his lips. Zuko smiled proudly back, feeling rather smug at the turn of events.
But then he remembered his own situation in his breeches, suddenly glancing curiously at the Avatar, wondering if the pleasure he bestowed might be reciprocated. He shook his head, deciding he wasn't going to be hesitant. He was a fire bender, and he had the power and strive to get what he wanted.
Zuko sat back from Aang's debauched body and started removing his own clothes in anticipation. He was bare as the day he was born by the time the Avatar seemed to come back to himself. The boy's eyes widened as they absorbed the prince's body, and Zuko actually felt a flush stain his cheeks at the scrutiny. He had a very respectable body for his age, he knew that, but even so he felt hesitant under the burning grey eyes trailing over his body, a part of him desperately wanting Aang to find his own body as appealing as Zuko found the monk's.
Aang gave a little moan, eyes trailing from Zuko's body to look at his own, and the prince followed the boy's line of sight to see the Avatar looking at his own, newly reawakened erection.
A smirk formed on Zuko's face and all hesitancy was dashed from his thoughts at the sight of the boy obviously reacting to him in a very favorable manner. Zuko shifted his body and laid himself upon Aang like he had before. Both of them groaned at the feeling of their bare skin coming into contact with one another and the pleasure of their naked erections cradled together by their flush hips.
Zuko bent his head, resting his forehead on Aang's shoulder, body trembling at the new but long desired feelings. He sighed as he stared shifting his hips back and forth, on arm wrapping around Aang's neck and the other slipping under the boy's lower back to bring their hips as close to one another as they could get. Aang's arms were around Zuko's back as he cried out, thin legs wrapping around Zuko's trim waist as he rocked hard with Zuko.
The prince shouted nonsense into the shoulder his lips were pressed against and he bit at the pale skin periodically, matching the spasms of pleasure wracking his body. They clutched one another tight as they rocked together, hot cocks cradled together, stimulated by the sweat slicked skin rubbing back and forth. Their cries of completion filled the clearing, breaking the calmness of the forest with their pleasure. Their warm come sprayed between their plastered bodies, mixing together as their hips continued weakly rocking in the aftermath of the pleasure.
They panted into each other's necks, still trembling periodically for several moments as they calmed. Zuko shifted, turning so that they lay on their sides, still wrapped tightly together but he no longer had to worry about crushing the small body beneath his own.
They dozed off together, sunlight streaming through the many leaves making up the canopy of the forest, bathing the two young men in a soft, warm light.
They woke up simultaneously near sunset, but neither made any movement to leave the peace of that place. Zuko stared at Aang, hands curiously tracing the blue arrow tattoos adorning his delicate skin, wondering to himself what it felt like to have something like that done to your body. Aang just smiled, leaning contentedly into the touches.
And just as he was leaning in to kiss Zuko for what felt like millionth time he remembered.
"Sokka and Katara are sick. I can't believe I forgot," he shouted, sitting up abruptly and holding his head in despair.
Zuko sighed, sitting up as well. It seemed this magical time was shattered. How could he forget their destinies? He was to capture this boy and this boy was supposed to try and stop his father from winning this hundred year long war. He looked away as sadness seeped into him. How could he forget? The moment they just had was insignificant in the whole scheme of things. They were too different. On two completely different sides of an endless war…they were born and breed in opposing countries. There was no way for anything to come of this, no matter how much Zuko wanted something to.
He stood up, not saying anything as he gathered his clothes and slipped into them, picking up his dual swards and blue mask lying in the grass. He watched out of the corner of his eye as Aang quickly dressed himself, mumbling to himself about frozen frogs. Aang nearly dashed out of the clearing but Zuko was surprised to see him stop and turn soulful, sad eyes on the fire prince.
"What happens now Zuko," Aang asked quietly.
"Nothing," Zuko muttered, unable to look into those brilliant eyes which had held him captive hours before, turning his head away.
"Are you saying we just forget this whole thing ever happened?"
"What else is there for us to do Aang?"
"Come with me. Help me end this war."
"You know I can't do that, even if I wanted to. The only thing we can do is go back to our lives now."
He finally looked up to see angry tears streaming down quivering cheeks. He reached out a hand but Aang just stepped back. He glared at the prince and Zuko felt like he was the scum of the earth at that look. But what could he do? It could never work between them…could it?
Before Zuko could even contemplate that answer Aang blasted off into the trees, using his air bending to propel himself through the dense foliage. Zuko watched with narrowed eyes at the abrupt departure. His eyebrow lifted though, and he suddenly wondered if he had made the right decision.
It could never work between them, no matter how much they both wanted it to.
He was the Prince of the Fire Nation and Aang was the Avatar. They were natural enemies. They weren't meant to have a happy ending.
Not with the way the world was.
…If only things were different.
Review, review, review please. This is my first Avatar fic (I've never considered doing yaoi for this fandom until Kunitsu brought it up, and the plot bunny just wouldn't leave me alone). I hope ya'll like it. I am planning to continue this, but for now it's a oneshot until the rest is done or close to it.