Mako has always thought that the Avatar is beautiful.
She stands before him now, fire in one palm and water in the other, smiling and laughing at something stupid his brother said, and he feels his heart swell a bit in reaction.
He ruffles her hair affectionately and she swats his hand away, her lovely smile dipping into a frown.
He laughs. Mako has never been the kind of person to laugh around her, but there's something about this girl that makes him feel light.
Mako has always thought that the Avatar is amazing.
She's crouched down in front of a crying kid right now, reassuring him in her own way that whatever is going on in his life, that it's going to get better. Then she pats the kid's head and turns back to Mako, looking tired, but happy. The Avatar has always taken well to being the Avatar, even though the job isn't easy and the work is never ending.
Mako has always thought that the Avatar is irritating.
She's currently screaming at him through his bedroom door. They're having a fight, though it's far from their first and it's far from their last.
He swings open his door and almost smacks his chin against her brown-haired head.
"Watch it!" she shouts, taking a quick step back. She huffs and crosses her arms across her chest and glares down at the floor, and a part of Mako wants to laugh because some things will never change.
"Listen," he snaps out, "I'm tired. I'm going to bed."
He watches her swallow and then her eyes are slowly looking back up at him. "Fine," she mutters, voice drained.
It's then that Mako sighs and moves towards the Avatar. He's starting to get too old for this.
He pulls her into a hug and she relaxes into his embrace, leaning her head against his shoulder. "It was still all your fault," she mumbles. Mako stiffens and his cheeks turn red with anger.
But she pulls herself out of his arms and runs down the hall before he can muster up a reply.
Mako has always thought that the Avatar is powerful.
She soars into the air, her airbending as incredible as ever since she managed to master it. It was a long and difficult process, but she's as good as Master Tenzin now.
She does tricks and swirls in the air, and Mako has to shield his eyes from the sun in order to see her.
She starts to descend from the sky, positioning her glider so that she lands gracefully on her feet.
Looking much too smug, she walks right up to Mako and shoves him playfully in the shoulder. "Noodles?" she suggests.
He shrugs one shoulder in response and starts to follow her off Air Temple Island. He's always in her shadow and he thinks he likes it best this way.
Mako has always thought that the Avatar is insightful.
"I was stupid," she cries, tears falling out of her eyes and down her cheeks. She's sitting on top of her bed with her pillow on her lap. Mako is rubbing her back and trying to soothe her as best he can despite his trembling fingers.
"It was stupid," he agrees, his voice sharper than he means it to be. "But you're okay. That's what's most important."
The Avatar sniffs and looks up at him, her vivid eyes shiny. "I'm glad that you were there, Mako."
Mako briefly wonders what might have happened if he hadn't been there. The thought makes him shudder with fear. "Me too."
Her face crumbles and her head comes to rest on his shoulder. Mako squeezes his golden eyes shut and tries not to feel sad.
Mako has always thought that the Avatar was brave.
She defeated her enemy today.
She's sitting across from him at the table. She's sporting a black eye and her left arm is in a sling, but those are the worst of her injuries.
Mako didn't even know he could be this worried about someone, but there she is, in plain sight across from him and waiting for her tea to cool.
"Can I ask you a question?" Her voice is quiet and curious.
He catches her gaze from across the table and swallows thickly. He has a bad feeling about this. "What is it?"
The Avatar sucks in a deep breath and then takes a sip of her tea, drawing out the process because of her nerves. "My previous life…was she as amazing as everyone says she was?"
Mako lets out a low breath, his heart plummeting into his stomach as the memories plague him.
Korra is broken before him, and he cannot fix her. Blood bubbles up from between her lips as she tries to speak. "You'll find me," she manages to get out before dying. He hadn't even gotten the chance to tell her that he had loved her.
He glances up at the Avatar across from him. "Korra was pretty remarkable."
The new Avatar, the orphan girl he'd tracked down in the Earth Kingdom and brought up as his surrogate kid sister, is wonderful in her own right, but such a painful reflection of the girl he'd never gotten to have.
Her face breaks out into a smile then, and her bright green eyes remind him of Bolin. "I think she still thinks that you're a jerk," the Avatar teases.
Mako's heart always pangs when she says things like this. "Yeah?"
"Yeah. She says that you're a jerkbender."
Mako sips his tea and gives the Avatar a small smile. "That sounds like her."
Mako will always be with the Avatar.
"I'll find you."
I figure that two back to back female Avatars are not impossible, since there was Roku and then there was Aang.
And did I surprise anybody? Probably not, but I still enjoyed writing this. Leave me your thoughts. :)