Disclaimer: I don't own Legend of Korra
By Techno Skittles
Korra winced as she waded through the rubble, taking in the amount of damage done by the recent battle that took place in awe. It was hard to process any of it; she'd been hanging out with her friends, messing and joking around like a normal teenager for the first time in a long time. Their outing was meant to be simple and innocent, but when she was spotted by some non-benders who weren't too fond of her, things got a little out of hand. One thing led to another and the next thing she was aware of, Equalists were crowding in all directions, backing up the non-benders harassing them. An all-out brawl broke out and everything became chaotic and confusing. Korra vaguely remembers Bolin and Asami fleeing to go find their Satomobile and she was so sure that Mako had gone with them while she distracted the Equalists. Unfortunately, she found him too late when an explosion went off and she heard his scream as a wall of the building over them collapsed on him.
The sudden grief that struck her had her paralyzed with disbelief and refusal to believe what had just happened. She stood frozen on the battlefield, surrounded by armed and dangerous Equalists more than ready to take her out. Her mind raced with so many thoughts and memories, things she wished she had said and others she wished she hadn't.
The grief soon gave way to anger and denial because there was no way Mako was dead because Mako wasn't one of those people who could die. She didn't allow her friends to be hurt in such a way so there's no way that he was lying dead and broken underneath layers of bricks from the demolished wall. The Equalists were assholes for scaring her that way and for trying to kill him, because no – she still refused that he was dead. Adrenaline pumped through her veins, faster and faster as her breathing intensified and her heart beat quicker. She lifted her head to glare at her enemies to see them shrink back and smugly etched in their petrified stances (she would've preferred seeing their scared faces but those damn masks were in the way).
She didn't have much recollection of what happened next: some damage here, elements there, her cries of frustration and anger as she attacked them relentlessly. It was all a very blurry memory but if given the chance to remember she would probably deny it.
After the Equalists fled and she calmed down from her fit of rage Korra noticed the dull throbbing of exhaustion coursing through her and realized that whatever just happened really took its toll on her. But Mako hadn't turned up yet, so she made it her new goal to find them and then get to Bolin and Asami (had they found the Satomobile yet?).
Pushing aside bricks and clumps of the buildings wall, Korra dug through the mess of their fight, looking for something that would signal that Mako was near. His scarf, his hair, maybe even one of his gloves.
The throb of her exhaustion grew more bothersome and she felt like slumping against the wall and just resting for a little while, perhaps leaving the search and rescue to Bolin and Asami when they returned. She deserved a little relaxation; after all, she practically took down an entire army of Equalists by herself. Mako needed her though, because he was probably hurt, or just as tired as she was and she needed to find him. So ignoring the very noticeable weight of her limbs, she kept trudging through, looking desperately for her friend.
Her eyes were half-lidded with sleepiness and her breathing was labored when she finally found him, hardly trapped under the rubble at all. His legs were trapped under a few clumps of bricks and his scarf was nowhere to be found, but otherwise he was laying pretty peacefully on the ground, eyes closed.
Perhaps too peacefully.
Korra rushed over to him, praying to the spirits that he wasn't gone, pleading with him that it wasn't his time yet, that he wasn't supposed to die. Her legs gave out under her a few times, chanting over and over "Please Mako don't be dead. Don't leave me."
She reached him and collapsed by his side, tugging him from underneath the rocks and placing his head in her lap. She watched his chest closely then put her head by his mouth, hoping to find a gush of air to let her know that he was still alive and breathing. A warm breath of air kissed her temple and she sighed in relief, straightening up to look down on him with a content smile.
"Thank the spirits," she whispered before bending over to hug his shoulders and burying his face in his neck. She breathed in the scent of him, so warm, so nice and not dead. Korra began to laugh in pure joy over this new information and briefly forgot her own fatigue for a little while.
On impulse, she rose slightly to stare intently at his face before lowering down to peck him gently on the lips, tasting the sweetness of Mako (alive and well). She smiled against his lips and pressed harder, wanting more of him and his taste, wanting more of the feel of his plush lips so warm and so alive.
Mako's eyes flickered open and melted amber met icy blue in an intimate eye lock as their lips broke apart, both of their breathing a bit heavy. Korra smiled down at him faintly, not even caring what his reaction was or that he was probably worrying about what Asami would think. She was too happy to care about much anymore. Without warning she leaned down to kiss him once again and was pleased when he didn't stop her. That pleasure increased when she felt him press his lips into hers and kiss her back and also when his hands wrapped around her shoulders. She wove a single hand through his hair and then began to tremble with so much adoration, so much care, and so much fear.
Mako broke off their kiss to gaze at her curiously as she smiled down at him and shook her head, letting the first bout of tears fall past her eyes and down her cheeks. She was so relieved and so glad and when he kissed her back she felt on top of the world, much better than whenever she was praised for being the Avatar.
"Korra? Korra what's wrong?"
Korra wiped at her eyes and took in a shaky breath. "You had me so scared," she choked out. "I thought you were dead, that you were gone, Mako."
Mako nodded slightly in understanding and lifted himself off her lap to be level with her face. "Well you don't have to worry about that now. I'm not."
"And you're so, so warm," she continued as if she didn't hear him. She scooted closer and pressed herself into him and Mako only sat there, more confused than he ever was when he considered the two girls he loved most in this world.
"Yeah…I guess I am," he agreed after some time.
"You're so warm," she whispered again.
"Korra where are you going with this? We've already established that I'm very much alive."
"Keep me warm, Mako. Please. For a little while longer."
Mako huffed in frustration at how the girl laying on top of him was blatantly ignoring him, off in some daze. He couldn't blame him too much; his presumed death had probably been the shock of her life. But he couldn't have imagined that it would get through a tough girl like Korra this badly.
"It's not even that cold out, Korra. We're in the middle of one of the hottest recorded summers Republic City has ever had," he argued. Yet he continued to question why she shook so violently against him, curling up into a little ball as she pressed her face into his chest. Mako sighed and leaned back, letting her fall with him. "Would you like my jacket?"
She shivered and shook her head, rubbing her face against him. "No, that won't do. Just hold me."
Mako obeyed and wrapped his arms around her to find out her arms were indeed very chilly. "Damn, Korra. Who knew someone from the South Pole could cold in this kind of weather?"
She didn't answer him and Mako suddenly felt something warm and wet soaking through his jacket into his shirt and onto his skin. Korra shook more violently and gasped for breath. The warm liquid was quickly spreading and Mako pulled her away from him already knowing what was happening and cursing himself for not noticing earlier.
Korra looked up at him with empty, half-lidded eyes and a soft smile. "You're so warm."
Her eyes closed.
Mako dared to look down.
Between them, her blood seeped through a deep wound in her side, dripping and pooling on the ground as her body's trembling began to ebb away.
He heard her whisper one last time.