She was never one to believe in love at first sight.
For one, it just doesn't describe her. Whereas love, in her opinion, was a trite and fanciful notion, she was brought up to be pragmatic and tough; a realist created at such a young age. She came to be aware of her duty as the next Avatar at barely four years old, and since then she was separated from her family, and brought up in a fortress in the middle of the South Pole. Being stuck in a prison-like place for the next thirteen years of your life, bending and training and preparing to become the next great Avatar, tends to help sort out one's priorities.
Another reason as to why she never entertained such romantic ideas was the fact that she had better and infinitely more important things to do in her spare time. She was raised under the watchful eye of the Order, and because of that she never experienced a childhood like so many others. She was immediately thrown into studying all the other elements, practicing each and every one of them until perfection was to be achieved. Throughout her entire life she was surrounded by old and withering people who were no fun at all, and because of that she had no real playmate either. The closest thing she had to a best friend was her pet Naga, a polar dog that had been assigned to become her animal guide.
But despite what seemed to be a sad and lonely childhood, Korra grew up to be quite cheerful and loud. True, her pragmatic ways often tend to get in the way and remind her of her real duty to the world, but even so she was spirited and vivacious, often wreaking havoc much to the dismay of her elders. She was impatient to finish her training and hoped to see the world beyond the caging walls, wishing she could immediately attend to and help the nations regain the balance and order that had dissipated ever since Avatar Aang had passed on.
So when Tenzin tells her that he will postpone her air bending training for a little while longer, she takes matters into her hands and flees to Republic City, where she pesters her master until he relents and begins to teach her the art of air bending.
And between juggling her training and own wanderlust, well, who needs time for love?
Korra was never one to believe in love at first sight.
Until the day she met him.
It was well after dusk and she was silently roaming the Bending Arena's corridors alone, exploring the sportsplex with fascination and without the permission of Tenzin. She had escaped the Air Temple after a heated argument with him, in which he had caught her listening to the radio about the pro-bending match that was happening in the arena. Tenzin despised pro-bending, claiming that it was a perversion and a mockery of the real truths behind the art of bending. Furthermore, he discouraged Korra from participating in it too for fear of it serving as only a distraction and a delay in her training. Korra personally didn't hold the same opinions as that of her master's, so despite his strict prohibition to never watch, listen, or even associate herself to pro-bending, she once again deliberately disobeyed him and fled to the city in order to catch a glimpse of the famous sport. She had found her way in a gymnasium after quite sometime, without knowing it was occupied by somebody else.
"Hey, who are you? What are you doing here? You aren't allowed in here, missy," A gruff and curious voice shook her from her trance, and by then Korra knew she was in big trouble.
"Oh, er, I'm so sorry. You see, I was looking for the-"
Unbeknownst to her, a stocky, young man was walking down the corridor and had passed the gym, seeing and hearing the old man harassing a young, innocent woman in blue. Thinking it was probably some lost fan, he immediately jumped to her rescue, stopping her in mid-sentence.
"Oh, there you are! I've been looking for you everywhere! Now come on, the match is nearly about to start!" He draped an arm around her shoulders and noticed from his peripheral vision how her eyes widened in surprise.
The old man's eyes darted between the two, and he clarified, "You with this guy?"
Not expecting her to play along, the young man was nearly about to respond when Korra beat him to it, nodding her head quickly.
"Oh yes, yes. I'm er, a new member, so I'm not really familiar with the places yet, and I was looking for the washroom-"
"Yes, yes. That's our new member right there! Hehe, always the lost one. . ."
They both looked up innocently at the old man. He scrutinized them with beady eyes before he grumbly let them go. The young man tugged her hand and lead her out and as far from the gym as possible, before he gently spoke to her.
"Sorry about that. Had to think of some sort of distraction so you wouldn't get in trouble. That was Toza, by the way. He owns that gym. He gets particularly nasty when he finds some stray people in it. Not really sure why. But anyway, I'm Bolin," He grinned at her and extended his muscled hand. Korra smiled in return and firmly shook his.
"I'm Korra. Thank you for rescuing me out there. I'm quite new to all this, actually, and I really wanted to watch the match but I couldn't find my way to the stadium." She shrugged helplessly.
"Oh really? Well then, it's your lucky day, Miss! You're watching tonight's match at one of the best seats in the stadium, that is," he paused, adding a dramatic flair and catching her eyes. "If you're up to it."
Korra's blue eyes lit up and she restrained herself from squealing and strangling the emerald-eyed stranger. She expressed her sincere gratitude and together they walked towards their destination, with occasional small talk here and there. When they finally reached the seats, she was genuinely amazed by the largeness of the arena. Benches surrounded the entire circumference of the stadium, and positioned in the middle was a huge platform surrounded by water. There were players currently in the platform, water bending, earth bending and fire bending their way to win the last round. Korra watched as a young man was shot by his opponent, sending him down the waters below. Momentarily distracted, his other members had accidentally let there guard down, providing their opponents an opening to shoot them both which inevitably led them tumbling down as well. Korra couldn't believe she was finally fulfilling her childhood dream, that one thing that wasn't associated with her Avatar duties; that one thing she thinks she could be selfish about.
Bolin stood beside her, occasionally glancing at her face. He saw the way her sky blue eyes lit up with delight upon entering the room, and how it continued to be as she examined everything around her. His lips quirked upward, glad that he had made someone like her ineffably happy.
His inner thoughts were distracted when he heard a deep voice coming from his left side say, "Bolin! There you are. Come on, our game's about to start."
He grinned at his brother, and gave him a quick nod. Upon hearing the new voice, Korra turned his attention to the edge of the room, where a tall, lean guy was fixing his arm gear. He had a pale complexion, neatly trimmed black hair and oddly shaped eyebrows. His eyes were cast down, completely concentrated on latching his uniform together. He was rather handsome, in Korra's opinion, but what made her heart stop wasn't just that.
"Oh yeah, Korra, this is my brother Mako," Bolin said, smiling at Korra.
Remembering the match she listened to in the radio a few days back, Korra thought she had heard his name being mentioned in the commentary.
"You're Mako? Cool! I was listening to your game a few days ago and was totally rooting for you guys! Did you win? I wasn't able to finish listening to the match. Oh yeah, I'm Korra by the wa-y," her eager rambling faltered.
His eyes were bright despite the cold look he was giving her. They were a beautiful shade of brown with flecks of honey yellow that seemed to pierce through her soul. She felt trapped under his gaze; like a helpless insect encased in amber with no way out.
"Oh, erm, so yeah, hi."
He tore his gaze from her and directed them at Bolin who was still standing beside her.
"Come on, Bo. Our game's on." He walked past both of them and into the limelight.
Bolin followed his brother shortly, but not before telling Korra to sit down and make herself comfortable. He smiled at her once more (he seemed to be doing that alot) and said, "Wish me luck!" before joining Mako into the light.
Korra sat down and stared at the waving figures of Bolin and his brother off the distance. He was a sweet guy, Bolin. His brother, not so much. He was cold and especially rude for not responding to her when clearly she was addressing him. Korra crossed her arms. Despite his uncivil manner of welcoming her though, she found it weird that, between the two, contrasting brothers, it was Mako who made her heat up like that.
Korra was never one to believe in love at first sight, but right now, as she remembers his amber eyes and how she felt like drowning in them, she'd like to make an exception.
She smiled to herself. Coming to Republic City was a good idea.
A/N: Hey there! If you're reading this note, then it means you've just finished reading my first fanfic, In Pools of Amber. Please do review it and tell me your views, opinions, constructive criticisms and etc. Thanks for taking the time to read it! :) Have an awesome day.