Author's Notes: This first scene was so hard and funny to write because I kept hearing the characters' voices in my head, ughhh. You'll understand when you read. And this chapter fills you in on what the others are doing, too, but it's mostly inspired from other fanfics I've read. I'm also writing a few short, nonrelated drabbles, so look out for them. And, omg, go count the times in this chapter I use the word HONOR! XDDDD ~
As Republic City started to return to its normal state, word had gotten out about Bolin's pregnancy and with more time on their hands, the public was all a buzz about how inappropriate most parts of the situation were. Rumors flew about and it was hard on Iroh because of his regarded position.
And now his grandfather, of all people, was coming to Republic City for what the general hoped was a time where he could thoroughly explain everything.
"This is absolutely unacceptable!" Zuko yelled, hitting a fist on the table.
Bolin shrunk back, while Iroh stayed firm, well aware that the man could sometimes have quite a temper.
The old man glared at his cup of tea and continued, "I should not have agreed with the others about you relocating. This is a horrible way to portray the fire nation," he scoffed, "Getting some young boy impregnated?"
"We didn't mean for it to happen, sir. Sorry, sir," Bolin meekly spoke.
Zuko raised an eyebrow at him, "You think that a simple apology will fix the problems that are now happening," he looked back at Iroh, "This is dishonorable, my grandson."
Iroh sighed, "Do you not think it also dishonorable to leave him alone with the child?"
Zuko groaned, annoyed, "This is why I have come all this way. You have-" he glowered menacingly at Bolin for a moment, "made a problem that cannot be fixed. Iroh, I will give you two weeks to try and fix the unfixable. If you cannot, you will be stripped of your title."
"That's not fair!" Bolin shouted.
The general placed a hand on the teen's shoulder, "Your sentencing is logical, grandfather. I will try not to disappoint you."
As Bolin stared in disbelief, Iroh pulled him up to standing and then into a deep bow. They left.
"What was that about?" Bolin accused as they walked down the hallway.
"I know from your point of view this doesn't seem right, but it's for the best."
"How?" he said, stopping in the middle of the hallway.
"My family has many traditions and starting a family before marriage isn't one of them."
"But this is your family, Iroh. Why would they do this to you for something that obviously isn't your fault?"
Iroh sighed, "I fell in love and that's something I've always been taught not to do. Grandfather says it clouds your judgment and, as a general, I need to be thinking about battle plans and not my beloved."
Bolin frowned at the ground, "I'm sorry that I'm such a burden…"
"You are most definitely not," Iroh said with conviction and the teen looked up surprised, "When I was away for those two months, without you, I have never fought harder or more bravely. I want to end this war for you, so you are safe."
The earth-bender blushed, "How come you didn't say that to your grandfather, then?"
"He is very wise and knows how I feel all too well, but it is still a matter of honor."
There was a long moment of silence as they stood there. The sound of a door being shut echoed through the space and they looked over to see Zuko walking over and then past them down the hall. Suddenly, Bolin had an idea. It might not work, but it was worth a shot.
He hunched himself over and grabbed his lower stomach.
"Bolin?" Iroh immediately knelt down to get a better view, "Is it the baby?"
The teen put out a few tears, which was easy with all the hormones naturally flowing through his system.
"It hurts," he garbled out and with that he heard Zuko's footsteps falter and stop.
Iroh took Bolin's face in one of his hands and placed the other on the baby bump.
"We should go to Katara," Iroh rushed.
Bolin shook his head, "No, no. I just…"
Not knowing what else to do to convince the ex-fire lord, Bolin kissed the general in heated passion.
Once they separated, a few claps came from feet away. Iroh looked up shocked, having forgotten that the man had even passed them by.
"You will really go through a great deal to make me change my decision?" Zuko spat.
Bolin swallowed and stood up straight. Obviously, the old man had not been moved by his ruse.
"What are you talking about?" Iroh said , "He's hurt, you bastard."
Zuko walked up to them and faced Bolin, "You've got guts, kid."
The general realized what was happening, "Bo, please."
His grandfather cleared his throat, "I think it would better if you were in charge of fixing this scandal."
"Grandfather?" Iroh questioned.
Bolin smiled, "I won't let you down, sir," he then looped his arm around Iroh's and walked away.
The teen stopped for a moment and turned back, "See ya, later, grand-pop!"
Zuko visually choked.
As the two of them headed over to Air Temple Island for dinner, Iroh was still heavily confused while Bolin was smiling brightly.
"You do have a plan, correct?" the general inquired.
"Yup," the earth-bender chirped with a kiss on the man's cheek.
Iroh waited, "Are you going to tell me?"
"There is no plan."
"But you just said…"
"The plan is to have no plan. We're just gonna go out. And be a couple. And stuff. Together."
"How is that going to work?"
"Dude, people love me! I'll be like the new United Forces Mascot by the end of the week!"
Iroh stared at him blankly for a second before cracking up. This boy was something else and the general was happy to have him like no one else did.
"I love you, Bo."
Bolin giggled, "I love you, too."
When they stepped foot on the island, they were first met with Pabu, who surprisingly chose to jump up onto Iroh instead of his best friend. Iroh grew flustered and Bolin just kissed him for it.
"I supposed I can get used to this plan of yours," Iroh smiled, fondly.
"I knew you'd see it my way."
At dinner, everyone was happy to see the couple's meeting with Zuko had not brought them down.
"You know," Bolin suggested, "we should head down to the marketplace. There's a festival tonight."
Mako gave a protective look, "I don't think you should-"
"That's sounds like fun," Iroh interrupted.
The general had to admit that Bolin's plan to get the public's acceptance was working well. Bolin would charm the women, as well as, some men with his funny jokes and charming smile at the festival. Iroh wouldn't have thought of influencing the lower class first, but it made it that much easier to make them understand their predicament and trust the general again.
After chatting up the people, Bolin dragged Iroh to a band playing.
"Let's dance, Iroh!"
"I'm not sure I know how to dance to such music," he replied, watching a few other couples move to the beat without any formality.
In the dark, the lights of the festival sparkled in Bolin's eyes and Iroh couldn't help but stare at the beauty of the face before him as the shadows curved along the teen's jaw. He wrapped his arms around her lover and swayed gently, not at all in sync with the upbeat music, but it wasn't like anyone cared.
After their dance, they settled down on a bench with some food. Bolin had gotten some weird, disgusting looking food, but the pregnant man found it absolutely delicious. They laughed and talked until the teen grew tired.
"Let's go home, sweetness," Iroh said, dragging the teen home to their mansion.
The general placed him on the mattress and went to undress. When he came back, his lover was fast asleep and he smiled again for the nth time that day. Iroh had never thought he could have such a perfect life, but he had it now.
He slid down on the bed and spooned Bolin close and was easily able to fall asleep.
The next day Iroh unfortunately had much work to attend to, so Bolin went to the Air Temple to hang out after sleeping in for a few hours. He found Asami first, who was reading over a large stack of papers.
She looked up and smiled, "I'm tying up some last minute things before the company can start up again."
Bolin grinned back, "That's awesome."
Asami had been turning around his father's company into something reputable again.
"Yeah, I'm also planning a debut party for my new leadership."
Anyone else would have called her narcissistic, but with everything that had happened to her; she deserved a million parties in her honor.
"Cool, can I come?"
She smirked, "Of course. Are you planning on bringing your boyfriend?"
"Maybe," he winked.
She laughed, but she stopped abruptly and looked behind Bolin. The teen turned to see a long forgotten face- Tahno. He was joined by Korra and Mako, who were smiling.
"Um, hey?" Bolin directed to the water-bender.
Tahno gave him a wave and then sat down next to Asami, who smiled cutely at him before nervously looking back down at her paperwork.
Mako put an arm around his brother's shoulders, "Um…you know how we needed to replace you on the Fire Ferrets?"
Korra sat down, "I know we've had our differences, but he's learned his lesson, haven't you?"
The water-bender frowned, but then smirked, "I suppose, Uh-vatar."
She jabbed his arm and continued to inform Bolin, "He's going to take over my place as water-bender and I'm going to take over yours, Bolin."
He still had a bit of reserve about Tahno until he saw him actually smile, unexpectedly, at Asami. She wasn't even looking at him as she wrote things down on the papers. Korra and Mako were also unaware of Tahno's expression, talking to one another.
As Asami flipped a paper over, Tahno caught her eye and she blushed. The moment was quickly broken when loud shouts of the child could be heard and they filed into the room.
"Bolin!" Ikki said happily with surprise. She jumped over to him and bent over to look at his stomach.
Meelo joined on the other side and shouted with her, "Hi, baby!"
The earth-bender laughed as the other teens stared in bewilderment.
Jinora shook her head, sat politely next to Ikki and asked, "So, has the baby kicked yet?"
"Not yet," Bolin sighed, rubbing his small baby bump.
"I hope I'm there when it happens for the first time," Jinora said, dreamily.
"Me, too," announced a deep voice.
Everyone looked over to see Iroh in the doorway.
"Hello," Iroh said as he walked over to Bolin to place a kiss on the top of his head.
Both Ikki and Jinora fawned at them, "Aww…"
Iroh blushed and sat down where Ikki had moved so he could sit next to Bolin.
"You finished with all your busy business?" Bolin asked him.
"Yes…for today anyway."
Bolin was upset, but kept on a happy face. He knew what an important job his lover had and he had to support it even if he got lonely sometimes without him here.
And that's why when Bolin woke up the next morning alone as he had yesterday; he shrugged it off and went to work devising his plans to get Zuko to accept him, honor or not.