A/N: Kalxti everyone! Whoa man I tell you I'm breaking records writing oneshots this week! This is the most fanfic publishing I have done in a week ever in my five years of being an author! Yeah anyway, moving on, I saw 'Avatar' for the second time this morning and let me tell you, it was even better than the first time I saw it! So I was hit with this bit of inspiration and decided to put pen to paper and write it out for you folks to enjoy. So here's my third Jake & Neytiri oneshot. Enjoy!
Summary: Neytiri watches sadly as the other Na'vi females display their interest in Jake, aware that she is already betrothed & doesn't stand a chance. But little does she know that Eywa has a different plan in mind for her and Jake. A Jake&Neytiri oneshot!
Note: This oneshot is set within the short time frame of just before Jake's initiation into the clan up until after their mating by the Tree of Souls. The plot comprises entirely of my ideas, and the snippets of Na'vi culture mentioned are purely my creation, and so are not truly part of Na'vi culture. I've changed the plot quite a bit to suit the storyline so hopefully that does not annoy you too much, this is fanfiction after all. Also, I focus mainly on Neytiri and her thoughts and emotions. I really love her character and though she is strong in the movie, I want to portray her in a different light, showing her weaknesses and her sadness. But in order for this story to work, you need to get rid of that mental picture of a strong Neytiri, and understand that in this oneshot, she is so deeply in love with Jake that realising she cannot be with him is painful, it kills her almost. If you are able to do that, I think this oneshot will work out quite well for you.
*** JAKE & NEYTIRI ***
"Please tell me that stuff's not going on my face," Jake blanched, clearly dismayed at the sight of the viscous, yellow liquid in the clay bowl, which rested in Neytiri's cobalt hands.
"Such a baby," chastised Neytiri knowingly, her tone disapproving, though the wide smile on her face portrayed her utmost joy at his success. "It is just yellow ochre mixed with tree sap. And I am also going to paint your body with it, not just your face."
The young male Dreamwalker sighed in defeat and sat quietly like an obedient child as he watched Neytiri dip two, long fingers into the mixture and bring it up to his face. Trailing her fingers across his forehead, the yellow ochre left vivid yellow markings behind, contrasting against his streaked blue skin. The mixture was warm on his face and Jake took comfort in the fact that at least it wasn't cold.
"I am so proud of you, Jake." Neytiri grinned, her bright gold orbs sparkling under the fading rays of light. "You have succeeded and proved so many, who doubted you, wrong and tonight you will be reborn as one of the Omaticaya."
The Na'vi princess could not conceal her pride and joy as she painted her apprentice's face. He was so beautiful and yet he couldn't be hers. She was betrothed to Tsu'tey, the best warrior in the Omaticaya clan. Her chest contracted at the notion though the smile remained stretched over her pretty face. Many would have considered it an honour to be betrothed to Tsu'tey, and indeed it was. The best warrior with the future Tsahik (spiritual leader) and the daughter of the clan's current Olo'eyktan (leader). It was a perfect match. The only problem now was that a cheeky Dreamwalker had charmed and swindled Neytiri's heart right from her chest.
The body and face painting was the first ritual in the ceremonial initiation of an individual. It could be done by the individual's family, a good friend, or in the case of males, potential suitors. There were many females in the Omaticaya who were attracted to Jake, some of whom were even prized members of the clan, such as Piral, the best huntress, and Ni'nat who was the best singer. Neytiri was well aware of this fact. She often heard females giggle and swoon whenever she passed with Jake on her trail and some of the bolder ones had even thrown him flirtatious smiles and waves. The females, unlike the males, didn't mind his Dreamwalker differences. If anything they found him distinctively attractive compared with the other males.
"What are you thinking about?" Jake said quietly, interrupting Neytiri's train of thought. She realised that the beaming smile had vanished from her face and that her eyebrows were now knitted deeply in a sorrowful expression.
Immediately, she shook her head and forced a laugh, "Nothing." And she was right. It was nothing. Not for him or anybody else at least. It was her heart that was going to ache when Jake eventually took a mate that would not be her. Well, maybe the other interested females who did not win his affections would be disappointed, but they knew him merely on a physical level. They were not attuned to him like she was, and so their disappointment would not be half or even a quarter of her grief.
"Thank you, Neytiri." Jake thanked, trying not to smile too widely so that the yellow ochre on his face could dry without cracking, "You accepted me when nobody else would, and I know you don't like me thanking you for this, but thank you for saving me that night in the forest from those Viperwolves. I wouldn't be here today if you hadn't been there."
Neytiri didn't smack him over the head and scold him for thanking her this time. He was right after all. He certainly would not be sitting before her then if she had speared him with one of her poisoned arrows or left him to die whilst being attacked by the Viperwolves that night. And now when he chose a mate, she would have to watch his happiness without her. She blinked and two teardrops slid down her cheeks, and it was only then that she realised she was crying.
"Whoa, whoa hey." Jake began, his strong hands coming up to grasp the backs of Neytiri's arms gently as she bit her lower lip and tried valiantly to force the tears, that were threatening to fall, back into her tear ducts. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean- I won't ever thank you for that again. Ever. I promise."
Stupid moron. He thought she was crying because he was thanking her for something that was unnecessary. Nevertheless, she played along, calling him silly for thanking her. In all honesty though, her heartbreak had begun to set in and she found that the more her large golden eyes locked with his own captivating ones, the more the pain broke forth. This was her fault though. She had asked for this; dug herself a hole and now she was suffering the consequences of her weakness and foolishness of letting herself be swept away by Jake Sully.
She placed a warm hand on his cheek and stroked it, "You have done me so proud, Jakesully. You will not need my guidance anymore after tonight." Neytiri said, willing her voice to sound composed amidst the hurt she felt, "You are strong; you have always been strong, fearless, and now you are even stronger because you see now. You see and hear Eywa all around you-"
However, Neytiri's speech was cut short by a group of giggling females approaching. It wasn't a terribly big group, but it was a group nonetheless of about seven or eight females. An icy chill set over Neytiri's heart as she watched them approach, all slender and beautiful with their gifts of offering to Jake. Had she not been betrothed to Tsu'tey she might have been part of that group, but she supposed it was pointless wishing now. After all, wishing only wounded the heart further.
The females giggled and squealed excitedly in Na'vi as they neared, some even pushing others forward in the group as if they did not want to be the first to go up to Jake. This was it. Neytiri knew she had to go. She wasn't entitled to stay as she wasn't a potential suitor.
Jake looked uncertainly over at Neytiri upon seeing the approaching females and raised a questioning eyebrow. Neytiri simply forced a smile at him and laughed lightly, before advising, "Whatever you do, do not say anything stupid if you say anything at all. Thank every one of them and accept all their gifts."
The young male Dreamwalker was looking even more panicked now as Neytiri placed the bowl of yellow ochre on the ground beside him and got to her feet to leave. Jake didn't have a bloody clue what was going on. All he knew was that a bunch of females was descending upon him and Neytiri was leaving him alone with them. He made it sound as if a bunch of fawning females was bad. It wasn't exactly. He just didn't know what was going on.
"Where are you going?" Jake whispered frantically as he stared up at a standing Neytiri.
"I can't stay."
The young male Dreamwalker's jaw dropped, "What do you mean you can't stay?! This is your room; your alcove! And you're female too so why can't you stay?"
The Na'vi princess had to fight hard to stop a sad smile from playing on her face and she simply replied, "The Hometree belongs to everyone, Jake. I may dwell in this alcove a lot but it is not mine to claim. And I cannot remain here- I am not ugh, I will explain everything later. Just do what I told you to." With a sweep of her tail, Neytiri disappeared from sight, leaving Jake mumbling vulgarities under his breath.
Neytiri ascended the spiral staircase that swirled up the core of the Hometree until she reached the alcove where her parents slept. It was empty, much to her relief. Lowering her form to the ground, she shifted a bit of the bark allowing a small peephole to be formed, which looked down into her alcove where Jake currently sat surrounded by the many females. A pang of jealousy hit her gut, simmering with the heartache that had been brewing for many days now.
The Na'vi princess watched quietly as the first female, Atxika presented Jake with a beautiful string of beads and feathers that she had woven together herself to put in his hair. Atxika was also one of the individuals who were going to be initiated tonight, and she was a sweet girl. Her big eyes and plump lips had many males lusting after her, but obviously she held an interest in Jake.
One by one, the females offered their gifts and painted part of his body. A couple like Atxika also had exotic strings of beads and feathers to offer while others made notched arrowheads or choker necklaces. The Na'vi princess watched sadly as the females fawned around the male who held her heart. How she wished she could be down there too to offer him a gift and herself. Then the thought struck her. What would she have given him anyway? She wracked her mind for some idea of a gift but to no avail, found none.
Neytiri swallowed the lump in her throat as the heartache surged on. She had nothing to give him even if she decided at the last minute that she did not care if she was already betrothed.
The last two females remaining were Ni'nat and Piral.
Piral was no stranger to Jake. She had led his very first hunting trip and needless to say he had been impressed by her superb hunting skills. She offered him a choker necklace made from what looked like the teeth of a thanator, which he allowed her to put on for him. Piral shot Jake a lustful smile, her hips sashaying slowly, and her tail flicked seductively under his chin as she left. Neytiri wanted to curse at her in a bout of jealousy, but her mother had raised her never to call other women bad names.
Ni'nat was the sole female left and her gift was the most unique by far. She sang a Na'vi song she had written herself and Neytiri half thanked Eywa that Jake couldn't understand her. The song was soulful and spoke of her growing affection for him. Despite his inability to understand her words though, Jake remained entranced by Ni'nat's mellow voice, which bubbled up from inside her and echoed around the alcove.
The Na'vi princess tried to ignore the painful throbbing in her chest as she watched Jake get to his feet and thank Ni'nat for her song. He showed the most interest in her among the others and as Jake neared Ni'nat, Neytiri could tell they were talking. Ni'nat gazed dotingly up at Jake, her face full of adoration as he spoke to her. Then her expression changed and her eyebrows rose in question. Jake leant in toward her and whispered something into her ear, to which she blushed deeply and her gaze fell to the floor.
The pain had intensified now as if it was trying to burn her heart out of her chest. Neytiri's breathing was deep and heavy as she wondered what they were speaking about. This was it. Maybe he had chosen Ni'nat for a mate. She hadn't explained to Jake about mating yet but surely he had got the gist of it by what had just occurred with all the females presenting themselves to him. However, Neytiri was suddenly pulled out of her thoughts when someone entered the alcove.
Neytiri gasped and scrambled to her feet to face her mother, "Sa'nu!"
Mo'at's expression softened upon seeing her daughter. Approaching her daughter, Mo'at cupped both sides of her daughter's face as she saw the heartache through her daughter's eyes, and said in English, "What are you doing to yourself, child?"
Her mother knew. Her mother could see the emotional war raging within her.
Neytiri began shaking her head as her hands reached up to hold her mother's around her face, "I do not know, mother. Forgive me for my foolishness. I deserve this pain. May Eywa heal me from this suffering."
The clan's Tsahik sighed deeply and embraced her only daughter, "Do what your heart tells you, child. You only think and feel for others what Eywa wants you to feel. Listen to her, Neytiri. What is Eywa telling you?"
Neytiri broke away from the embrace and stared at her mother, confused. What was her mother saying? Did her mother condone her affections for Jake? What did she mean about Eywa? Neytiri felt love for Jake and as a result she now also felt heartbreak? If this was Eywa's will then what was their All Mother saying to her?
Flutes began playing on the ground below and Mo'at squeezed her daughter's shoulder, "Come, child. The ceremony is beginning."
*** JAKE & NEYTIRI ***
The ceremony was joyous and full of frivolity as the clan welcomed their new members. Despite the force in her heart that was willing her to speak with Eywa at the Tree of Voices, Neytiri remained at the ceremony the whole time, watching on as the clan welcomed Jake with open arms and kind hearts.
As the clan feasted on freshly picked fruit, nuts, seeds and an assortment of meat, the Na'vi princess was unable to stomach anything more than a piece of fruit. She sat by her mother and father's side up at the front, and out of the corner of her eye, she saw Jake sitting several feet away, chatting animatedly with Ni'nat.
Neytiri's heart dropped like a dead weight into her stomach as she watched the pair chat. They looked so happy together. She wanted to find a mate like that, one that she could be open with. Though she and Tsu'tey got along fine, there was never that spark of chemistry between them. The searing pain in her chest increased as she continued to watch Ni'nat and Jake, images of them with their many children flashing through her mind. Tears stung her eyes once more and immediately she shut them tight to stop them.
This was wrong. She was being selfish and she knew it. Jake did not belong to her; he was not hers to claim. He was free to choose any woman he wanted and if it wasn't her then so be it. But then Neytiri remembered her mother's words. You only think and feel for others what Eywa wants you to feel. Listen to her, Neytiri. What is Eywa telling you?
The Na'vi princess felt a hand on her shoulder and she looked up to see her mother looking sombrely but determinedly at her, "Go to Eywa, child. Speak with her."
*** JAKE & NEYTIRI ***
The Tree of Voices glowed brightly tonight and Neytiri let its long leaves run through her fingers as she walked toward its trunk. Kneeling down at its roots, she attached her queue to its shimmering leaves, her mind immediately filled with the many voices of those with the All Mother. There were so many questions she wanted to ask; so many prayers she wanted answered and she couldn't settle on one. So Neytiri just led the floodgates burst, allowing her emotions, her heartbreak and her tears run free.
Help me, Eywa. Why do I feel so lost? Tell me why I feel this way about this Dreamwalker. Tell me why you gave him to me and then took him away when I felt for him. Neytiri sobbed uncontrollably as the myriad of voices in her head gave her neither the truth nor any answers. Please, Eywa. Heal me. Take this great pain away from me!
Her tears cascaded down her cheeks like rain in a flood and she half wondered what Jake Sully had reduced her to. She was strong, tough before this. She hardly ever cried. Then Eywa taught her and showed her love for a male and now she had become this. Anyone who knew her would consider her behaviour out of character. Except her mother, who only added to her confusion by seemingly condoning her feelings for Jake, despite the fact that she was the one who had decided on Neytiri and Tsu'tey's betrothal.
The heartbreak wracked her petite frame and she clutched at her chest desperately. Was this what love was? This cruel beast who tortured those who were rejected? She never wanted to fall in love with Jake Sully. She had been unhappy about being assigned as his teacher, and at first she had just wanted to teach him and get it over with. But as time flew by, she found his childish wonder and tongue in cheek very charming, and soon he had stolen her heart from her like a practised thief in a busy market.
Please, Eywa. I see this Dreamwalker. I see him. I feel love for him. Neytiri prayed, turning her gaze upon the massive tree she knelt before, If it is your will, then end my pain. Please.
Once again she received neither answers nor words of advice, and her heart didn't cease to ache either. Quietening her sobs, Neytiri contemplated her future. She would return to the clan and eventually she and Tsu'tey would be mated. He would be Olo'eyktan when her father passed on to be with Eywa and she would be Tsahik when her mother went to be with Eywa too. Didn't sound too bad, but she would have to spend every waking moment knowing and seeing Jake with his mate.
"Neytiri!" A deep, husky voice sounded in the distance and she recognised it in an instant, "Neytiri! Neytiri?"
Jake Sully. Always making noise. Neytiri couldn't help but crack a small smile at the thought. He was always noisy. Even in a sacred place like this he was making noise looking for her, but why was he searching for her?
The leaves on the beautiful tree rustled nearby and soon Jake's face popped into view. He smiled her favourite smile, the overjoyed one, the one he always wore when he had accomplished a task and jogged toward her. The Na'vi princess quickly brushed away any stray tears and got to her feet just as he reached her side.
"Jake," Neytiri greeted her voice hoarse and she cleared her throat, "How did you know I was here?"
"Your mother told me. I didn't see you after the ceremony so I asked her and she re-directed me here."
Neytiri nodded in understanding and tried to sniff softly. Jake stepped to the side a little, allowing some of the light from the glowing leaves to illuminate the Na'vi princess's face. His eyebrows furrowed deeply as he took in the sight. Her beautiful face was wet, presumably from tears as it had not rained, and her eyelashes were still moist with a few teardrops still clinging to them.
The young female seemed to realise that he had comprehended her tearful situation and quickly gave a false excuse, "I am so happy for you, Jake! You are one of the Omaticaya now! You have made me proud as a teacher and I am glad to have known you." However, the memories of her spending time teaching him only brought a fresh bout of tears and she hastily wiped them away with the back of her hand.
Jake laughed nervously. He wanted to tell Neytiri that she didn't look proud. She looked sad, very sad.
It was now or never. Neytiri had to explain it in full to him eventually; the whole mating business. He probably had already chosen Ni'nat but didn't know how to go about the process formally. Taking a deep shaky breath, Neytiri steeled herself and forced a smile as she touched his shoulder. This was going to be hard, but she'd been through worse. She would make it through the explanation without cracking, she hoped.
"Do you understand what happened before the ceremony?" Neytiri asked slowly.
"What, you mean the business with all the females giving me things and painting me?"
Neytiri nodded, to which Jake shook his head in a 'sort of' manner.
"Now that you are part of the Omaticaya," Neytiri began quietly, "You are entitled to choose a mate. Those women that came to you with gifts earlier are submitting themselves to you. They are telling you that they are interested, and you may pick a mate out of those women."
Jake bit his lower lip as he stared intensely at Neytiri, who looked away from his gaze, "And I can only pick out of those that were there earlier."
The Na'vi princess nodded. She hated what she had become, hated how he had such an effect on her. Swallowing the forming lump in her throat, Neytiri carried on, "Ni'nat is a fine woman, Jake. She is the best singer, very calm, patient. She would make a good mother." Another image of two black-haired children running into Jake's arms with Ni'nat looking on invaded her mind and she wished that in that image, she was Ni'nat, looking on as Jake's children, her children ran to their father.
Neytiri was determined not to let the next bout of tears fall. Not now, not here in front of him. After what she had been saying to him, even he wouldn't be that much of an idiotic moron not to realise her feelings for him if she cried.
"Well, I don't want Ni'nat." Jake stated gently. Dared he tell her? After all, the way she been behaving pointed his assumptions in the right direction. He didn't want Ni'nat or Piral, or Atxika, or any of those other women. The woman he wanted was right there in front of him, but were his instincts right in telling him that she felt the same, or was he making a foolish assumption? "I've already chosen."
Neytiri's eyes flew up to meet Jake's, and she thought, Oh please do not say you have chosen Piral, that little vixen. However, as she stared deep into his eyes, she found the longing in them for her that was mirrored in her eyes for him. Two lone sacred wood sprites floated down from above, hovering over them like little angels as they continued staring into each other's eyes.
"But first, this woman must also choose me." Jake finished softly, ending his sentence with a small smile as he gazed at Neytiri.
Something exploded inside of Neytiri like a thousand of those spinning fire lizards being released in her belly. Could Eywa have answered her prayer? Her heart sang in ecstasy and she reached for his face, caressing his cheek, "She already has."
Neytiri could feel his breath on her face as he leant forward and then she was soaring as her lips moulded to his. It was a new feeling to her, she had never experienced this before but she enjoyed it. She felt Jake's strong arms wrap around her middle as he lifted her so she could straddle his narrow hips.
Eywa had answered her prayer. Neytiri's euphoria could not be measured then as her arms enveloped around the man that would soon be her mate for life. She didn't care about Tsu'tey anymore. This was right. It felt right with Jake. Even as he got a bit restless and began kissing her neck and collarbone she did not feel frightened for she knew he wouldn't harm her. She nuzzled his head lovingly, inhaling his wonderful scent as she held him close.
"I see you, Jake." Neytiri whispered as he lowered them both to sit on the ground with her in his lap.
"I see you, Neytiri."
Lifting his chin toward her, she pressed her lips to his again and reaching behind her she took her queue (braid) and found his hand already holding his.
Jake broke away from the kiss, panting slightly, "I want to look at you when we do this."
Neytiri smiled and rested her forehead against his, their noses touching. Their hands brushed together and then suddenly tsa'haylu was formed between them. It was pure ecstasy as they bonded. They could see everything; each other's memories, their thoughts, the love they felt for each other. It was indescribable feeling and then their lips were together again as their hands grabbed at each others' body.
This was more than Neytiri had ever imagined it to be. She had heard of mating from her mother and from others but this was something that no amount of words would be adequate to describe. Jake showed her his joy at succeeding as an Omaticaya warrior and she showed him her pride and affection. Even time itself seemed timeless as they embraced and bonded together but it turned into more then.
Neytiri had not heard of this part but she certainly was not complaining. Not only were they linked mentally and spiritually but somehow their bodies had come together between her legs and Jake had become a part of her physically. She sighed quietly in pleasure as she kissed his jaw, hearing his increasing heart and breath rate as they moved in synchronisation. The combined pleasure of being mentally, physically and spiritually joined was incredible and soon their bodies were shuddering as the waves of pleasure skyrocketed to a peak.
Both of their bodies went rigid as they embraced, their bodies pressed up against each other, Jake moaning softly into the crook of Neytiri's neck and she, whimpering into his ear. They were mated for life now and it had been Eywa's will. Eywa was watching over them then as they lay down by the Tree of Voices, in a tight embrace as sleep overwhelmed them.
Eywa looked down upon the mated pair. The All Mother had plucked this Dreamwalker from his kind and placed him among the Omaticaya for more reasons than being Neytiri's mate. She knew that despair was on the horizon and that the fate of Pandora lay in the hands of Jake Sully. He would be Toruk'Makto and it would be him who would save the Na'vi.
*** JAKE & NEYTIRI ***
A/N: *sighs* I just read it over and well, it's not one of my best works but it's worthy of publishing anyhow. Hope those of you who read it didn't think it was a waste of time. And for some reason, I seem to like portraying Neytiri this way. Not that I like to see her cry, it's just that in the movie she was such a strong female character, and I always believe that every female has a weak point in their life. So this was Neytiri's weak point. I hope the ending wasn't too sappy. That's the bit I always struggle with in fanfics, the ending. Anyway, please do review and tell me if you like it or not. It would really make my day if there were people who actually did enjoy it.
P.S Sorry for any typo-errors, I do try to weed them out but some of them are just so sneaky!
Note: Regarding Jake & Neytiri's mating in this story. I've read up a little bit on it and apparently, when two Na'vi's mates they connect their queues (their braids), forming a lifelong bond and thus mating for life. It is just said to be a night of immense spiritual and emotional pleasure and the mated pair will embrace befor being sent to sleep by Eywa. It doesn't say about any physical lovemaking going on, but I added that into my oneshot just to make it more relatable to you guys.