Here's your Tokka!
Three Days Later
"You know Toph," Sokka mused, lounging on one of the Fire Lord's many plush couches, "Aang told me you were pretty worried after I got attacked by Koh."
Toph had been leaning against the couch idly teasing Momo when Sokka spoke. She paused only for a second before continuing to playfully flick the lemur's tail. Thankfully, she was facing away from Sokka so he couldn't see her flush.
"I was mourning the loss of your manliness." She smirked, barely missing a beat.
"My what!" Sokka exclaimed, half sitting up. "I almost died in battle! What's more manly than that!"
"No Snoozles," Toph deadpanned, "you gotten bitten by a snake."
"But it wasn't just any snake!" He said. "It was Koh! The Face Stealer! Ancient Spirit of Doom...and all that stuff…"
"And all that stuff?" Toph rolled her eyes. "Besides, it was still a snake. It's not like you got stabbed."
"It was a life or death struggle!"
"With a snake."
"With an all-powerful spirit!"
"That was a snake."
"Whatever," Toph shook her head, a slight smile tugging at the corner of her lips, "it was still a snake."
Sokka groaned loudly and threw his hands in the air. "Are you ever going to let me win?"
"Probably not," Toph said, turning around and punching his arm.
Sokka grimaced but resisted the urge to rub the spot—he didn't want Toph to really think he wasn't manly. But as quickly as their playful banter had started, it faded to a companionable silence. The blind earthbender turned back around and resumed playing with Momo and Sokka, lay back and began to daydream on the couch.
"Hey Toph?" he said abruptly.
"Yeah?" She asked, still distracted by Momo.
Toph wrinkled her nose, "Thanks for what?"
"I don't know," Sokka said, staring at the ceiling. "I guess I was thinking about the battle and I realized that if I had died…well…Aang would've still had Katara, and Zuko has Mai and his mother…"
"So…what? Are you saying that you don't have anyone?" She asked.
"No, not really," Sokka sighed. "I mean, I know they would always be there for me as best they could, but I don't really have someone. Not anymore. Not like Aang has Katara or Zuko has Mai. Not since Suki."
Momo pawed at Toph's hand, trying to get her to keep scratching his ears. "I'm sure you'll find someone," she said neutrally.
"But that's the thing," Sokka continued. "I don't want just anyone. I want someone who understands me, who accepts me for who I am…not for being that avatar's friend or for what I did in the war."
"I'm sure there'll be someone," Toph muttered.
There was a long pause. "Well…there…" He let his sentence trail off.
"Sokka?" She frowned.
"There is someone," Sokka said, quietly, "but I don't think she notices me."
"Well in case you haven't noticed, you're pretty hard to miss," Toph bit out, suddenly quite irritated. "I'm sure that if you just go up and tell her, you'll be fine."
"You think so?" Sokka asked, pulling himself into a sitting position.
"How would I know!" Toph said suddenly, a startled and very disgruntled Momo shooting from her lap as she stood up. "It's not like I have a lot of experience getting asked out! So go complain to Zuko or Katara if you want, but I'm not the person you should be talking to! Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to get something to eat."
Sokka's hand shot out and grabbed her wrist, "Wait…please…just wait. I'm not very good at this sort of thing."
Toph froze when Sokka grabbed her hand, but kept her back to him as he stood up.
"Good at what kind of stuff?"
He ran his free hand through his hair. "The asking out the girl you've liked for a really long time but don't know how to tell her kind of stuff."
Toph froze, her heart rate suddenly skyrocketing. Surely he didn't mean her…
Sokka swallowed thickly, wishing that Toph would turn and face him. At least then he could get some idea as to whether or not he was losing one of his best friends.
"Well?" Toph said, still not looking at him, willing herself to remain calm.
Finally she turned, her wrist still in his, a tentative blush staining her cheeks as she stared in the direction of Sokka's voice.
"Are you going to ask her?"
"You mean…you mean you will!" The words practically ran from Sokka's mouth.
An exasperated sigh escaped Toph's lips as she struggled to keep a grin from escaping. "You have to ask first, Snoozles."
Sokka blushed. "Oh, right…sorry." He paused, staring up at the ceiling for a moment before looking down into Toph's eyes. Even though he knew she couldn't really see him, he wanted to make sure he did this right. "Sorry," he began again sheepishly. "I'm not really sure where to start. There's just so much to say and yet…I don't know how to say it. You've always been there for me. You understand me and appreciate me for who I am. You're so…so…Toph. And," he blushed a deeper red, hoping his palms weren't too sweaty, "I think you're beautiful."
Even though he hadn't fully acknowledged it before, as the words slipped from his lips, Sokka knew they were right. These weren't idle words for some girl he had just met. He wasn't trying to impress anyone—not that he thought Toph was really that impressed with him to begin with. He was Sokka and she was Toph, and when a big grin finally split her face and she launched herself into his arms, he knew that was enough.
In a wave of giddiness, Sokka spun around, causing Toph to shriek rather uncharacteristically, before pulling them both down on the couch behind him.
"And," he grinned when he finally managed to catch his breath, "I was wondering if you would like to go out with me?
Even though he felt fairly confident she would agree, he still felt his chest constrict when Toph pretended to consider his question. As she lay propped up on his chest, he couldn't help but push a lock of her dark hair out of her face. Hopefully the rapid beating of his heart would be enough for her to know.
"You're sure?" She asked carefully.
Sokka nodded, "Completely."
Toph smiled. That was enough for her. And she pressed her lips to his.
So that's it...it's been quite a journey. I didn't get a lot of feedback on the final chapter, but would love some quick thoughts on the entire story if you get this far...or just to know that you did! =) Regardless, I hope you've enjoyed reading it, I know I have had a blast writing, and hopefully I've improved a bit along the way. As always, thanks for reading-it means a ton!
Until the next story,