Mako awkwardly offers her the flowers and Korra raises her eyebrows and laughs a bit, but she blushes and accepts them anyway.
He loves that when she goes out in the rain, she never dances and her fire is never put out.
It's only after she jerks awake, her pulse racing and her stomach tingling, that she finally admits to herself that she just might, maybe, possibly kinda-sorta like him.
His knuckles are scraped, bloody and burnt and raw, and Korra smiles slightly as she lifts them to her lips.
Mako has worn his parents' rings on a chain around his neck for seventeen years, but somehow they look so much more at home on his and Korra's fingers.
The metal is warm when Mako gently places the ring into her palm, and the look on his face makes it mean so much more than some hand-carved necklace ever could.
The air is thick with the croaks of badger-frogs from the nearby river when Korra wakes before dawn with her head on Mako's shoulder; thinking nothing of it, she goes back to sleep.
"We're all in the same boat now," he tells her firmly, his grip just a little too tight on her elbow. "If one of us goes down, we all do."
The strength she feels when she's surrounded by water is nothing compared to how strong she feels when Mako's fighting by her side.
Korra laughs as she glides effortlessly past him, showering him in snow, but at least from down here Mako can better appreciate the view.
Mako turns the snow to steam the second it lands on him – at least, until Korra covers him in it from head to toe.
He would never admit it out loud, but Korra was the only person who could really make him melt.
He kisses away a bead of water trying to drip down her neck and smirks in satisfaction when she shivers.
Korra doesn't want to pull away, but –
"Sorry," she pants, pushing Mako off her, "there's a spring digging into my back."
People call Mako hot – his personality, his bending, his looks – and while Korra doesn't dispute the latter, she thinks he's more warm than anything.
Mako's favorite part of summer is getting to see Korra in considerably less clothing than she wears the rest of the year.
She tilts his chin up to look at her and winds her arms around his neck, kissing him. "Don't worry about the money," she murmurs, drawing herself closer. "You're all the vacation I need."
Mako knew he shouldn't have told Bolin he was going on a date with Korra when his brother sat him down and told him he was going to Dating School.
It's simultaneously stupid and amazing, but sometimes all he has to do is look at Korra to feel hope again.
They're both the first one to convince the other that it's okay to ask for help.
The lack of contact drives her crazy until it overflows and all she wants to do is touch him, flesh constantly seeking flesh.
When Mako has to dance with anyone other than Korra, he's always shooting her this look like he's being force-fed poison, but she just smirks and waves at him.
He's not sure when the center of his universe shifted from Bolin to Korra.
Her grin is triumphant, her breath hot on his neck as she watches him swallow nervously.
"What are you doing?" he hisses when she latches onto his arm, and she gives him an excuse instead of admitting that she's scared.
"What was that for?" she whispers as he pulls back, carefully adjusting the slumbering infant in his arms; next second she's blinking away tears and ignoring the break in his voice as he says, "I'm happy."
Mako thinks it's just sad, the way Korra can screw him up. "It's not sad," says Bolin, clapping him on the shoulder. "It's pathetic."
He's horrified by the angry red burns on Korra's lower back and waist, but she just smirks and says it was worth it.
Her entire life, she's been so sure her purpose is to protect and restore balance to the world, but now that Mako's made his way into her heart, she's not sure of anything.
Korra just kind of happens to him and he doesn't know what he expected to occur when he met her, but falling in love with her hadn't really crossed his mind.
She can feel him blow on the back of her neck, trying to wake her up, but she waves her arm and hears a woosh, a thud, and a muffled oompf. She's too tired to grin as she says, "Five more minutes."
They could share a million kisses, spend a million days together, have a million moments together, live a million lives together, and it still wouldn't be enough.
"He just needs time," Bolin assured her, but Korra didn't know that time was something they had anymore.
Internal Mako is so different from External Mako; Internal Mako laughs and smiles with not just both halves of his mouth, but even his eyes and he loves to reminisce, loves to be loud, loves to love her.
"Korra, for the last time, you can only use –"
"– I can only use waterbending in a real match, yeah, yeah. But we're not in a real match, so what does it matter?"
Spirits, this girl was infuriating.
Mako enjoys talking to Master Katara more than he probably should, maybe because he knows that she's the only person in the entire world who can even begin to understand what he's feeling.
Those times when she can lay in the sun with her husband and daughter and pretend she's not the Avatar – those are Korra's favorite.
Every part of her is focused on Mako and her pounding heart, but then Bolin starts to cry before even she does and she can't help but laugh.
It's easy to forget about stupid politics with Mako's lips on her jaw, his body against hers, his hands on her bare skin.
Bolin's feeling pretty good about himself right about now: The season is over, they've won the championship, confetti's raining from the ceiling, the crowd's going absolutely nuts, there's a ton of money headed their way, Mako and Korra are kissing –
After Korra leaves, Mako stares over at Air Temple Island and wonders if it's too far to swim.
In his nightmares, Korra always slips from between his fingers, just like the water she bends.
She goes over to the attic apartment so often it begins to feel like a second home – a first home, really, as it's the first place she's ever actually considered a home.
And there is nothing now, nothing but Korra, and she is here and she is beautiful and they are beautiful and it is wonderful.
Tears of fury, like diamonds, glitter in her eyes as she stalks out of the apartment, and when Mako hears the door slam he hangs his head and wonders what he's just done.
Her muscles are hard as stone, contracting beneath his hands, but her skin against his calluses is soft.
Mako – his mouth and his hand and his scent – him – is everywhere – on every part of her – is part of her – where does Korra end and Mako begin?
"It's getting kinda late," he said; then, clearing his throat, eyes on the ground, cheeks aflame: "You can, uh, just crash here if you want."
Something's different about tonight, and neither of them really know what it is until they're both blurting and muttering, "I love you" at the same time.
With a strangled yell, Bolin leaps back out of the room, slamming the door behind him, sufficiently traumatized.
a/n: so. i've wanted to do this kinda thing for forever, so i got my friend to give my fifty random words, aaaand... VOILA. a post. wasn't originally gonna be all makorra, but i couldn't help myself.
um, so, any feedback you might have is always much appreciated, and if you're confused for any reason by any of these, feel free to ask me to clarify.
i might do more of these in the future - if they're still makorra, i'll probably just add a chapter on to this, but i'm just gonna mark it as complete.
ooh, also - title. song by the rescues. very metaphorical, but fits. kind of. (*was actually just desperate for a title*)
anywhoozle. thanks for reading and all that jazz - hope ya liked it!
disclaimer: i don't own or claim to own legend of korra. all characters or anything else you recognize belongs to nick and bryke. no copyright infringement is intended.