A/N: This takes place during Sozin's Comet Part 4, as Toph and Sokka struggle to keep their grip on each other.
As you can tell, it's pretty Toph-centric. Please provide any criticism via reviews; it's my first ATLA fanfic ever, so please support!
It was the first time she had ever felt blind.
Dangling from Sokka's hand, a thousand feet stretched beneath her, the vast mouth of the Earth Kingdom's barren and broken land yawning, waiting. Her feet burned with the heat of the lit forest, prickling uncomfortably as the empty air and flames mixed. Gravity was a law, not to be defied; it was as if the Spirits themselves had imposed this on her as punishment for running away. She heard the swish of Boomerang, the clash of meteorite on armour, then felt the gust of wind down, down, down, signifying the loss of their last possible hope.
She didn't know where the adventure ended and the terror of war began.
It was foolish. She was foolish- just a little rebellion had landed her in this situation, the very sense she relied on most no longer an advantage here, her one disability taking over. Fear clouded her just as the darkness pressed on her eyes, her whole body tensing, struggling to pull herself up, fighting against the weakness in her arms. She heard Sokka wincing in pain; the hurried footsteps of Fire Nation guards grew steadily louder. Hang on, Toph! Abandoning her futile efforts, she hung limply, her callused feet climbing the air, desperate to find Earth, metal, anything to save herself. Anything to save Sokka.
Aye aye, Captain.
Her breath caught in her throat, choking any more words back. The drag from the airship's flight buffeted her, pressing all her weight downwards. She felt her hand slipping, slipping, slipping from Sokka's as their sweat and her spit mingled, his fingers desperately trying to find friction with hers. Tears leaked out of her sightless eyes; they were going to fall, and burn with the rest of Wulong Forest. Through her fingertips she felt his blood pulsing, his muscles screaming with the exertion of supporting her weight, the frenetic pounding of his heart that beat in time to her own.
His grip on her was loosening, friction giving out to moisture.
He was her single thread to the world. All around her was black and darkness, an infinite drop to the bottom, and they were exhausted beyond belief- it would almost be a relief to just let go. The tears came faster now, and as her arm and fingers succumbed to fatigue, Sokka seeming to edge further and further away from her. But he was here, his fingers a vice grip on hers, hanging on like he was going to do everything he could to keep her from falling.
Like he was going to die trying.
And then Toph had to laugh, because honestly? She was spending her last moments with her best friend, her never lover, and the last thing she was going to experience was the flush of his skin, the throbbing of his veins, and his fingers interlacing hers.
What a heavenly way to die.
And then he had let go, and she steeled herself for the impact to come.