Title: let the butterflies cry

Fandom: Legend of Korra

Rating: M

Characters: Asami, Korra, Mako

Pairings: Asami/Korra, Asami/Mako/Korra

Disclaimer: I do not own.

Dedication: To Sara, for everything.

Summary: They were only trying to understand what he saw in them.


It starts as many things do: with a kiss. Asami isn't quite sure why she does it. It's just that look of Mako's, the one like quiet ember sunsets that make her heart flutter. All the good romances say it's the look meant for a lover. Which she is. His lover, that is.

But that look is never directed at her.

She tries to understand it. Lovers come and go but friends are forever or some kind of sentimental bullshit like that.

No, that's not it. There are times when that look is so intense she expects to see lightning.

Maybe it's the eyes. They are knee-weakeningly blue. Is it the charming, disarming smile? The exotic, permanently sun-kissed skin? The curve of her jaw down to the delicate slope of her shoulder-so deceptive that curve, it always takes her by surprise-is really quite alluring. There's the fiery disposition and she can only imagine what those long, long legs must look like without the heavy furs.

She just can't figure it out. So three months into her relationship with Mako, she corners Korra after practice and kisses her.


Korra has known for a long time that she's likely bi. Aang probably was too and she doesn't doubt for a second that Yangchen, Kuruk, Kyoshi, and Roku were. There's just something about switching genders over the course of so many lifetimes and remembering all those lifetimes and eventually, the spirit just stops caring.

Love is love. Lust is lust. Human is human.

And Sato Asami is a damn gorgeous human. And Mako seems to like her and Korra really, really wants to understand what is so attractive about this girl (other than the obvious, of course).

So when the little non-bender kisses her after practice one day, Korra only hesitates for a moment before kissing her back.


It wasn't supposed to be like this. It was just supposed to be one kiss, one little moment of insight. Just one kiss, not moments stolen away from curious golden eyes. There shouldn't be sweat and racing hearts and dear sweet spirits why is her blood reacting like this? It shouldn't be trouble breathing and whispered curses and they're just so destructively gentle with each other that she can't decide if she wants to laugh or to cry.

It was just supposed to be one kiss.

Except it's never just one kiss and now Asami gets it.

Korra is addictive.


Kiss one, "We shouldn't be doing this."

A breath, a beat, kiss two, "No, we probably shouldn't."

There are hands at the furs around her waist and hers are tangled in that dark, dark hair. It's a blur of green and blue and black and brown and white. When they stumble out of the girls' change rooms, no one questions why they both look so flushed.

Mako gives her an odd look, but she shrugs it off. It's been five months and she's long since stopped caring. Let him find out. He's the reason this is happening. She knows Asami only started this because she wanted to understand and Korra has only continued it because she wants to understand.

The longer he wavers between them, the more curious they get.

It's just the way they are.


Korra is beautiful. Asami has known this for a while and with the Avatar lying in her bed, she can't help but wonder why Mako even stays with her. Not when he has this to go to instead. Because this is breathtaking. Korra sleeps so soundly; it's amazing the amount of trust she's given Asami.

This is bad. Korra should not be sleeping in her bed, bare back illuminated by rain-speckled light from the window. Asami should not feel like she's on fire and she should not be wondering what it would be like if Mako were here.

She's heard rumours of lightning wielders like him losing control and letting sparks play across their partner's body. Would he be like that? Korra seems to lose control because the way Asami's blood rises up to meet each caress is not natural.

Blood and lightning. Asami would love to be in the middle of that.

It's then that she decides that this-whatever this is-cannot be good for her health.

But rather than do something about it, she slides down beneath the sheets and curls up next to Korra. When the Avatar shifts and Asami finds a caramel-coloured arm wrapped around her waist, she bites her lip and focuses on going to sleep. There will be time tomorrow to deal with this.


"You and Asami seem to be getting along." There's something accusatory in his voice and in those green, green eyes (so like Asami's, is this why Mako chose her?) "Does he know?"

Know what? That she's sleeping with his girlfriend when he can barely get a kiss in? That Asami wants them both and he wants them both and she wants the two of them so why can't they all just get together already? She can still feel Asami's lips on hers (moon peach and silk, it's absolutely divine) and she knows her eyes are likely dilated from the memory. Everything is glaringly obvious and yet only Bolin seems to have noticed.

"Probably not."

He looks pissed off and rightfully so. She hurt him by kissing his brother when she knew Bolin liked her and now she's running around with Mako's girlfriend.

Maybe she should just focus on Amon and airbending.

"Korra, this isn't like you."

Except, it is. The Avatar is hope and light to the world but personally? It's dark. Really, really dark and lonely. It's why Aang fell for Katara, though Katara never seemed overly keen on him. It's why Kyoshi had a child and not a husband. Roku was a lucky bastard. Because Korra can't do any of that. She's selfish. Asami came to her and they both can't seem to stop, not until Mako makes his choice.

So she says something about Jinora and even though he looks confused, she knows that someday, he'll have his secrets and she'll keep them quiet. For now, he will keep hers too.


"I kissed him, you know," Korra says one evening when they're tangled together in bed because she has to be in town for training before dawn tomorrow and Air Temple Island is just too far away for four-in-the-morning practices.

So she stays with Asami.

"When?" she says, though she already knows. Mako told his side of this story ages ago. Why Korra has brought it up now, while they're in bed, she doesn't know.

The Avatar shifts, dark hair moving over her shoulder, "Just after you two got together. I started it."

"But he kissed you back."

"Yeah." Korra looks away and there's hope in Asami's chest because please, please let her be wanting the same thing. "I still want to."

"Even now?"

"Even now."

Asami smiles, "So do I."


Korra never put much stock in the whole 'girls mature faster than boys' stuff Master Katara told her about. But this is just proving the old waterbender right. She loosens up her body and uses more of the Swamp Style waterbending. It's more sensual, mysterious; all slow moving and delicate from the muggy heat of the mystic fog. Sure enough, Mako trips up-staring at her hips, of course-and she pins him down with ice.

In the corner of the training room, she can see Asami and that look. They've finally agreed that this isn't up to him anymore. His choice doesn't matter. If he wants one of them, he has to accept the other one too. The green and the blue, the blood and the sighs and please let there be lightning when he joins them because he will, eventually, and it will be beautiful.

But he has to come on his own terms, so she lets him up and they start the spar again.


"Stop spending time with her," Mako says one night. Korra isn't staying with her, or Asami would drag him back to her flat so they could make him understand just how much of a bad idea that would be.


Bolin has been good. He hasn't said anything about them, though he keeps his distance from both the girls-women, really, because girls don't do the things they do. Good girls don't, at least.

And to think, Asami used to be a good girl.

Then Mako came along with his pretty golden eyes and that lopsided smile and introduced her to beautiful, enticing Korra and now she needs them both to live.

"Why not?"

She kisses him. Bruising, dangerous, aggressive, just understand already. This started because they wanted to understand. And now? Now he needs to understand.

Mako is a very bad idea, but he's theirs.


She's staying with Asami again (whoever thought pre-dawn practice was a good idea needs to drown) and when she hears the click of the front door and knows her girl is home, she pulls water from the faucet and covers herself. Asami likes the water, so that is all she wears when she steps out.

Mako is a surprise.

A good one, but a surprise all the same.

They have an understanding that he needs to accept. So clad only in her native element, she kisses Asami and hopes he gets it.

Reviews are always welcome.

~Nautica Dawn

(formerly Hikari Adams)