A/N: Ask and ye shall receive; this is meant to be read as a direct follow-up to chapter 9, theme 18: Different.
"How is she?" Bolin asks quietly, following Mako down the makeshift road.
"Still asleep," Mako answers, "any word on Asami or the airbenders?"
"No. I got Jinora to the rendezvous point and Tenzin wasn't there; looked like there had been a fight."
"How's Jinora holding up?"
"Fine. A little shaken up, but she's been helping out with some of the younger kids."
"This is a disaster," Mako mutters. "At this rate, we'll be lucky if there even is a Republic City left to fight for after all of this."
"So much for the power of positive thinking."
"The 'power of positive thinking' is what got us into this mess in the first place!"
"You think that we should give up."
"No; yes; I don't know Bolin." Mako sighs, taking a seat on a flat rock next to his brother. "Are we really prepared for this? I mean, hasn't Amon already won?"
"What makes you think he's won?"
"Bolin, look at where we are! Amon has the city and we're hiding underground with an Avatar who can't bend!"
"Mako's right." A voice interjects quietly; the brothers both turn to find Korra standing behind them, Jinora at her side. "We're not prepared. As much as I would love to confront Amon and take him down, I can't. I can't bend; I can barely walk on my own. If we try to fight now, more innocent people are going to get hurt."
"You sound like you have a plan," Mako observes as Bolin helps Korra sit down.
"Tenzin left a note with Jinora's sky bison," she explains. "He sent a telegraph to the United Forces. If I'm right they should be here in another day or two."
"You want to head them off," Mako realizes.
"With the resources that he has, Amon will know that they're coming. I want to get as many civilians as possible out of Republic City and then head to the South Pol."
"What's in the South Pole?" Bolin asks.
"Gran-gran," Jinora explains. "We hope that maybe she can find a way to restore Korra's bending."
"So we're going into hiding?" Mako asks incredulously.
"We're outnumbered and outgunned," Korra snaps. "We need to retreat and regroup. Tenzin has been trying for months to teach me patience, and I'm finally starting to understand. Now we have no idea where he is, we have no idea where Asami is, or if either of them is alive, and I refuse to lose anyone else. So yes, Mako, we are going to hide." She glares, forcing herself to her feet. "And then we are going to come back to Republic City and kick some Equalist butt."