A/N: I'm not sure where the inspiration came for this. I've always been a tremendous fan of The Last Airbender (the series, of course, not that joke of a movie) and this sort of just came to mind. I'm not entirely sure if I want to continue with the idea - what do you all think?
I do not own nor am I affiliated with Avatar: The Last Airbender, Nickelodeon, or any production companies related to the show. I am merely a fan writing some fiction (aren't we all?).
As always, reviews are very welcome and much appreciated. Thank you, JRS.
From the home atop the hill, Sokka could hear the water gently lapping at the shores of Kyoshi Island. It served as a comfort to him, reminding the young man of his youth spent at the South Pole - before the Avatar had come along and changed his life entirely, that is.
Normally Sokka would sit in the windowsill of his bedroom and look out to the horizon, watching the moon rise above the deep and dark ocean, and reflect on what his life had become. At twenty four, he spent the summer months in his homeland of the South Pole and the winters on Kyoshi Island; marrying Suki had meant giving up his dreams of being the tribal chief, but it was worth it.
On this chilly evening Sokka sat at his window as was usual, gazing out at the full moon shining brightly in the smooth satiny black sky. Full moons were his favorites; he felt closest to Yue on those nights. He still missed her, and while Suki had managed to capture his heart, there was still a tiny cavity somewhere in there that Suki could never fill in place of Yue.
Suki turned over in their bed. Sokka peered over at her and smiled, drawing a knee up under his chin. The past weeks had been exhausting on his little wife; Suki had insisted on an immediate return to training after a lengthy break that quickly and thoroughly wore her out.
Suddenly, a weak cry came from the corner of the room; Sokka sprang to his feet and hurried over to its source. Leaning over the cradle that he had carved himself, Sokka saw the sorrowful face of his new daughter, crying as if her wet diaper was the worst thing that could have ever occurred on the face of the planet. He envied her simple life.
Sokka scooped the child into his arms, patchwork blanket and all; he'd become something of a natural at holding babies in the two weeks he'd spent with the new infant. Her face twisted in discomfort, eyes scrunched up so they concealed the beautiful blue irises she'd inherited from her Water Tribe heritage. Sokka rocked her slowly, trying to soothe her cries.
"Why are you so sad, Kiara?" He whispered gently. "Daddy's here."
Her crying lessened once Sokka had changed her cloth diaper, his least favorite part about fatherhood. Sokka carried her out of the bedroom and into the cozy kitchen of their cottage, quietly so as not to wake his slumbering wife, and sat down in the rocking chair stationed in the corner of the room, a gift from the baby's godparents Aang and Katara.
The gentle rocking was comforting to both child and father; for Kiara, it gently lulled her to sleep, typical for many babies. But for Sokka, the chair was reminiscent of his childhood on the icebergs of the South Pole, the frigid seawater rolling beneath the slabs of ice and rocking them as he slept in their makeshift icehouse.
Kiara's tears gradually ceased, and she peered up at her father in the darkness with sharp blue eyes. Over the past two weeks, Sokka had spent hours each day just watching her as she slept, or as Suki held and fed her, marveling at the person he'd helped create. While she had received the signature Water Tribe aquatic eyes, Kiara had gotten a light dusting of fluffy, auburn-colored hair from her mother's Kyoshi Island heritage. Her skin was somewhere between that of Sokka's native tone and Suki's paler one; the balance suited the infant well. The most noticeable feature of Kiara, however, was her size; though Katara assured that she was normal in weight and length, Sokka was shocked to find that the newborn fit snugly in his two hands on her first day of life.
"Are you better now?" Sokka oftentimes wondered if his daughter understood his questions, sometimes expecting her to pipe out an answer. The closest thing to a response he ever received was a quiet gurgle, or perhaps a burp; however, he regarded her rebuttals highly.
Sokka sighed heavily, stealing a glance at the moon through the window. "You're going to grow up where you won't have to worry about wars or Daddies going away to fight. You'll always be free here, Kiara, did you know that?" Another gurgle. Sokka smirked. "Daddy and Mommy and Auntie Katara and Uncle Aang and everyone else made sure that you'd never have to worry." The child in his arms smiled; Suki liked to remind Sokka that it was probably gas, but he took it otherwise.
"I love you, and so do Mommy and Auntie Katara and Uncle Aang and Auntie Toph and even Uncle Zuko. You will be the most loved child in this whole world, and I won't ever let anyone hurt you."
Sokka sometimes feared the possibility of old war enemies coming to hurt his precious daughter. It was his greatest concern when Suki learned that she was carrying Kiara – what if someone came and hurt Suki while with child? Could anyone even imagine how painful it would be for Sokka if he lost both of them? Aang and Zuko assured him that nothing of the sorts would ever happen, that measures were in place to keep them all safe.
"You aren't going to have a worry in the world growing up, I promise."
That was another major goal of Sokka's in becoming a father – he didn't want his children to have to grow up as quickly as he did. At just fifteen, Sokka had to become the man of his tribe, taking on the responsibility of protecting his people on top of taking care of his little sister. He had missed out on having a real youth, especially after Aang came and shook up their worlds. Sokka didn't regret it for a single moment, but he still didn't wish the same for his daughter.
"You're good with her," Sokka's head snapped up to the doorway to his bedroom to find Suki leaning against the frame, arms crossed and sleep sags beneath her eyes. "I knew you would be."
"What are you doing up?" He asked her, silently hoping that she wasn't having another one of her strange desires for a foot massage.
Suki shrugged, almost in a way that suggested defeat. "I just couldn't sleep. And I heard you talking to someone."
Sokka smiled at her tiredly before returning his gaze to Kiara, now falling asleep in his arms. "I was telling her about how I don't want her to grow up like we did," he explained quietly. "I want her to have a real childhood. No daily fears of warships docking at the shore out of the blue and coming to take us."
Suki sighed and shuffled over to him quietly, crossing the panels of moonlight on the floor formed by the windows. She sat upon his knee slowly, still feeling slightly sore from childbirth two weeks earlier, and snuck her arm into the crook of his elbow. "She won't worry, Sokka, and neither will we. We'll take this life day by day if we need to, but we'll be okay."
He leaned over and slowly kissed her on the cheek, feeling her cheeks burn with a bright blush – it still amazed him that she continued to blush even after years of being together - before burying his nose into her loose hair. "I know we'll be okay. It's just scary." His voice was hardly a whisper. Suki tucked her head into the space between Sokka's shoulder and beneath his chin, reaching out to lightly stroke Kiara's nose with a gentle finger.
"Everything will be fine, Sokka," Suki replied in an equally hushed tone. "We have each other, and we have your family and our friends." She smirked to herself. "Besides, even if there is trouble, Kiara has a highly skilled warrior to take care of her."
Sokka looked at her eagerly. "You think I'm a highly skilled warrior?"
Suki laughed lightly, melodically. "No, stupid, I'm the leader of the Kyoshi warriors, remember? You led an army of five year olds."
Sokka's face sank, turning to an expression of partial anger and partial sadness. Using her free hand, Suki cupped his chin and turned his face towards her, kissing him on the mouth and letting him take control. Minding the sleeping baby in his arms, Sokka kissed her back with full force, feeling the smile playing on Suki's lips beneath his own.
They pulled away moments later, smiling madly, still as in love as they had been seven years earlier. Suki pecked at his mouth once more for good measure, before adding, "You know you're my favorite warrior, Chief." Sokka beamed at her before returning his eyes to Kiara, now soundly asleep in his arms.
"I think it's time we all went to bed now," Sokka said in a whisper. Suki nodded in agreement, swaddling the blanket around Kiara's little frame and standing up from his lap slowly, wincing from the aches in her muscles from birth and training. Sokka rose as well, taking his time before offering his elbow once more to Suki before escorting her back to their bedroom. He settled Kiara into her cradle smoothly, the precious baby remaining asleep during the entire process, and lay down in the unoccupied space next to his wife in their bed, pulling the woolen blanket over them.
Sokka's arm snaked around Suki's waist as he lay beside her. "You know," he whispered quietly, "We make pretty little babies."
"Mm?" Suki's response was muffled – she had already begun to fall asleep nestled into Sokka's warm body. "Yeah."
Closing his eyes, Sokka began to fall into a tranquil peace himself, adding, "Let's have another."
Suki's head lolled back on the pillow. "Sure, sweetheart," she answered groggily, nearing a state of complete unconsciousness.
Sokka smiled to himself as he fell deeper and deeper into the blackness of his mind, kissing the back of her head swiftly and cracking his eyes open the slightest bit, so as to steal one last peek at the full moon in the inky black sky, before he finally drifted away.
Only then did he know for sure that they would be okay.