Obviously I'm crazy for starting a new story days after I've wrapped up another one. Oh well. I'm eager to get the ball rolling on this one.

WARNING: this story will contain language, violence, sex, character death, and general fuckery. Rated M for those reasons.

A lot of you are used to the way I characterize Zuko and Katara. This is a completely different take on them. This is not a particularly happy story, but I still hope everyone enjoys it! Dark themed stuff is new for me, so I'm excited to put this out there and see what you all think.

"Some men just want to watch the world burn."

—Alfred Pennyworth, The Dark Knight

When Prince Zuko wakes up, he does not wake up slowly. His eyes merely open and suddenly he is fully alert.

When Prince Zuko wakes up today, this morning feels no different from any other morning.

He turns a little in his bed and freezes when he sees a smooth expanse of creamy, white skin.

He sits up and sighs.

Moments later the girl rolls over, eyes fluttering. When she notices that he's awake she starts to smile.

"You can leave. Now." His voice is toneless, bored even.

The girl immediately gets out of the bed, gathers her clothes off of the floor and begins backing towards the door. "Thank you for your time, Prince Zuko." She bows her head.

He's picking at his fingernails. "Have a nice morning…"

He pauses, looks up at the girl. She has an expectant look on her face. She's cute, considering her class, with soft hair and pretty eyes. She'd been smart and clever. He'd liked that. And last night? It'd been fun, and Zuko had needed to have some fun. But none of that really matters because he still can't remember her name for the life of him.


The girl turns as red as a tomato and high tails it out of his room.

Seconds later his sister walks in, hair down and dressed in her morning robe. She looks delighted. "A maid? Really Zuzu?"

He rolls out of bed and searches around the floor for the shirt he had been wearing last night. "Shut up."

"One day your prick will fall off from one of the diseases they'll give you."

He finds his shirt and pulls it over his head before glaring at his sister. "One day, Azula, I'll catch you with a stable boy and I will never let you hear the end of it."

She lips twitch up in something that can barely be called a smile. "Except I have taste. But discussing your sexual exploits is not why I'm here. They found one."

He pauses while pulling his hair into a topknot. "One what?"

"A bender."




"They're all still dead."

Zuko laughs. "How'd they manage to catch a waterbender?"

"It's rogue. They caught it on Ember Island, working with a bounty hunter."

He sticks his crown into his topknot before turning and facing his sister. "Male or female?"


He crosses his arms and leans back against the bedpost. "And how did they manage to rope her into coming here?"

This time Azula really does smile, but in amusement. "She offered herself up. They were going to execute the bounty hunter she was with."

Zuko nods, and starts to make his way into his bathroom.

"There is one problem, though."

He raises an eyebrow in curiosity."Oh?"

"She's hideous. I don't see how we're going to get a nobleman to fuck her, much less marry her."

"What's wrong with her?"

Azula gestures to the left side of her face. "She's scarred, badly. Three gashes from just below her temple to her jaw. And they're bright red. Hideous."

"Well, maybe we can just put a bag over her head," he says from inside his bathroom.

He hears a snort and then the door to his room closing.

Zuko splashes water onto his face before surveying himself in the mirror. Two gold eyes stare back at him, along with pale skin, black hair, and aristocratic features. The people have been calling him beautiful ever since he hit fifteen.

Zuko frowns. What's there to smile about? It's just his reflection.

A/N #2:

I'm trying something new for this fic, I've decided to start replying to reviews. I haven't done it in the past for multiple reasons (okay, mostly laziness), but I'm going to now. So, uh, be prepared. I can be awkward ;)

Let me know what you think!