Wow, it's been awhile since I wrote fanfiction. Haha. Should've finished Field Trip, but I lost the original document a long time ago. :[ So, onward to a new obsession! TLOK! :D

Disclaimers: I do not own the show or the characters.

Chapter 1: Failure

"Korra!" Mako winced as he fought the pain that reverberated through his previously attacked pressure points. Korra's shriek echoed throughout the Equalist auditorium, spurring Mako to scrabble to his feet, ignoring the pain that blistered over his nerves. Taking a fighting stance, with his fists at the ready, Mako snarled, "Amon! Let her go!"

Only the slightest incline of Amon's head warned Mako of what lurked behind him. Spinning on his heel, the firebender punched two crescents of flame toward the two - rookie - Equalists who were slowly advancing upon him with buzzing, electric batons. Both jumped out of the way, fumbling with the weapons as they did so. Mako slammed various waves of flame out through a roundhouse, sendinding the Equalists fumbling and stumbling, ducking and dodging.

Amon growled under the grunts and clatter of the fight, highly unimpressed with his new initiates. He was almost too distracted to notice Korra hock a flame loogie at his mask. Instinctively, Amon jerked backward, avoiding the flame ball as it shot toward the cieling, where it dissipated.

"Unwise, Avatar." With a few quick jabs to the right places, Amon disabled the Avatar. Before Korra even fully crumpled to the floor, the masked man had entered the fray

"Your fight is with me, Amon!" Korra struggled to sit up, tears biting at her eyes as helplessly flopped back to the floor. Her eyes were glued to the fight. With each flame thrown, the temperature increased; the scent of burnt everything, and sweat, filled the air. Snarls, yelps, and grunts filled the air. Korra felt somewhat dizzy from all the sensations, the scents, the sounds. A few short weaves and dodges, along with a few chi blocking techniques, Mako had fallen to his knees, his back to Amon. The Equalist loomeed over the firebender and Korra felt her heart sink as he grabbed Mako by the back of the neck, "No!"

The firebender bared his teeth and struggled against Amon's hold, snarling and growling like a caught saber-toothed moose-tiger. He roared streams of flame through the air, unable to hit the carefully positioned Amon.

A cold bead of sweat trickled across Korra's back as Amon positioned Amon's hands in an all too familiar formation.

"No," Korra could only whimper and clench her eyes shut as Mako's scream made her marrow squirm.

"And you don't remember anything after that?" Exasperation tore at Mako's tone and, with more than a little irritation, he eyed his friend.

"I remember scraps of sounds and voices, but nothing else." Korra shook her head, guilt bubbling in her tummy. Her blue gaze trailed over to Mako, watching his expression twitch with frustration. Her chest twinged with residual affection as she pulled her knees to her chest and tore her gaze from Mako. The heaviness between them told her enough; she had failed him as a friend and as the Avatar.

Below where they sat on the Air Temple Island's cliff face, a boat noisly blared its horn, like an inconsiderate guest blowing its nose. With the sun high, the sky blue, and a refreshing scent of water and grass, it seemed like a nice day to relax. Korra's mind itched with too many thoughts, though.

A week had passed since the final showdown with Amon. Korra had to be told what happened after the masked lunatic "cleansed" Mako. The Avatar State had kicked in, Amon attemtped to revoke her gifts only to get blasted into unconsciousness, and then everyone else showed up. Amon was locked up in Republic City's best - and most restraining - cells. His right-hand men were also locked away, but the Equalist movement continued. Without Amon as a vengeful figurehead, the Council hoped that a more level-headed Equalist could step up, take control of the movement, and allow peaceful negotiations to take place so benders and non-benders could live in peace.

However, that still left a good deal of benders stripped of gifts they had grown up with. Mako included.

Korra's eyes flickered to Mako, watching as the breeze from the bay ruffled his hair. Dark circles under his eyes and a lighter pallor to his skin told the Avatar that he suffered from severe spiritual upheavel. What could be expected when bending was stripped from someone's being? Despite the multiple times he had tersely told her he was fine, he obviously was in emotional and spiritual agony, "I'll fix this, Mako."

Mako's gold eyes flicked to Korra, his eyebrows quirking, "It's not you fault, Korra."

"Yes, it is. I should've done something."

"Stop being ridiculous, Korra." Mako averted his gaze, sending his glare out over the water to Republic City, "You stopped Amon, you did your duty as the Avatar."

"Mako." Korra reached her hand out, clenching Mako's shoulder. He refused to turn his eyes to her. She squeezed his shoulder, reassuringly, "I'll fix this."

Mako clenched his eyes shut, his eyebrows furrowing as if in pain. He merely offered a nod in response to Korra's words. The Avatar kept her hand on his shoulder for a moment, before letting it fall and returning her gaze to the city. Her eyes lingered on what little she could spot of the Police Department's high-security prison as she swept her sight along the horizon.