Author's Note: This relationship starts in my other LOK story "Wants, Needs, and Other Feelings". It can be read both with and without but slightly more enriched with.


There were celebrations. Of course there were celebrations. How could the greatest triumph since the last Avatar go uncelebrated? But. The celebrations eventually come to an end and when they do, shared moments and feelings sometimes pale with the morning light. Asami leaned against the outside wall post in deep thought. For the past few days, at the feasts and formal political parties, Asami caught his eye. At yesterday's party the group was asked to pose for the newspapers. Smiling for the camera, he had inconspicuously played with the ends of her long black hair. When he curled his finger around one tress and tugged lightly, she instantly felt hot and bothered. Her breathing came a little irregularly, catching Mako's notice. She innocently played it off as the room being too hot. Mako would be none the wiser since they've never gone further than making out.

Today, he made the announcement over breakfast that he was returning to the Fire Nation in the immediate future. Ever the lady, she betrayed no emotion to that and joined in on the choir of similar replies as she evenly told him, "You'll be sorely missed, General Iroh."

Like it is said, all things must come to an end but damn if she never even had the chance to start a beginning.

Glumly pouting, she continued practicing with the wooden dummy.

"You never stop, do you?" he asked from behind her. "I would think that you would enjoy a nice long vacation after aiding in Amon's downfall."

She flipped her hair with a wave of her hand. "I could say the same for you."

"It's different for me. My work is never done. I am the General of the United Forces."

She did a roundhouse kick, hitting the dummy's head. "Whereas I am unemployed. I never really thought about what I would do after all this. The expectations for me before were very clear: finish basic schooling and get married. My future husband would have taken over the family business," she didn't pause as she practiced a lower aimed kick, "Now that my father is in prison, I'm not sure what will happen anymore. I suppose this means I'm to take over the business myself but I'm not the genius when it comes to inventing, or business. Maybe I should sell the company and survive on those earnings. I can't live off Korra's kindness forever."

"It seems you have it all figured out."

"Those are just thoughts." Remaining focused on her practice, she punched the dummy square in the chest.

When she raised her leg to she kick the dummy again, he caught her by her calf. "Here's a thought: why don't we get more intimately acquainted? It would be my absolute pleasure to take you to dinner, Ms. Asami."

As he spoke, he traced a pattern into her thigh. She inhaled sharply at the feeling. "I think we've acquainted ourselves well enough during our past celebrations. To further it when you will leave in the 'immediate future' would be unnecessary. Now, can I get my leg back?"

He released and locked his arms behind his back military style. "I do have a job I cannot abandon. And because of this job, I will remain in touch with the Avatar and by extension, you."

"Just how many girls have you said that to?"

"Only to the most beautifully merciless woman I've ever met."

She couldn't stand it anymore. Men are only this nice to her when they want something, whether it is her body or her money. He definitely wanted one of those two. She pounded her fist against the wooden dummy. Her voice edged on mutiny as she told him, "I'm sick and tired of being betrayed by men! I will not stand for another!"

He grasped her unfisted hand and pressed a sweet kiss to it. "I understand."

So maybe this is the point where she first softened to General Iroh. Her heart pounded as he straightened himself, her hand still engulfed by his. Asami looked up into his eyes. Unable to help herself, she stood on her tiptoes and kissed him. He let go of her hand in favor of her waist, allowing her hands to go to his coat-covered chest. He pulled her flush against him and she felt the raging heat radiating from his body. It was like she was embracing a warm summer day. His lips trailed down her neck, transferring the heat into her. He bit down on her collarbone. Electricity tingled down her body and her lips parted, releasing a tiny moan.

Raising his head, he said, "You're very beautiful."

"Thank you."

Their lips crushed each other again as if they couldn't bear to be apart. Her hands ran through the back of his gelled down hair. It's so soft and surprisingly cool to the touch.

"Perhaps we should take this indoors," he whispered against her ear.

"Perhaps you should take me to dinner," she softly replied as she pried herself out of his hold. Pretending to be completely unaffected, she forced herself to walk straight back to the Air Temple. Tossing the words over her shoulder, she said, "I'll see you later, General Iroh."

Yes, leave him wanting more. It's all part of the game and that classic move is key to victory. Iroh smiled as she walked away. But if she wants war, she should know not to play with a General.