Shout out to my co author BG-13! Makes these stories better every time :)
After making preparations for the arrival of General Iroh and Commander Bumi, Mako took his sleeping wife and both their children back to their house. He cradled her close to his chest until he gently laid her down on the bed. The twins gave their mother a kiss on the cheek and she sleepily opened her eyes to do the same. He chuckled at that and kissed his children good night before lying down himself.
"What's so funny?" the Avatar asked, already fallen asleep again.
"I don't think you realized who you were giving the kisses to. It could have been Naga," he playfully commented as he ran his fingers through her hair. The Waterbender grumbled.
"I would have known if it were Naga," she replied. "But you're right; I probably would have kissed anyone."
Mako let out a growl. Korra grinned and let out a laugh.
"I'm teasing, Mako," she reassured him before snuggling close to him. He sighed deeply and kissed her forehead.
"It's been a while since we've seen Bumi," he said.
"Since the twins were seven, right?"
"Bet he's as crazy as ever."
Korra let out a deep sigh before opening her eyes to look at her husband. She placed a hand on his cheek and looked into his amber eyes. "You can cut to the chase," she said. "I know you aren't thrilled about Iroh coming."
The Firebender grumbled loudly and muttered something unintelligible. The Waterbender rolled her eyes and gave him a small smile.
"Let it go, Mako."
His face hardened. "How do you expect me to let it go? Do you remember what he did last time he was here?"
The Avatar pouted and nodded. Of course she remembered.
It was a few days after Mako proposed to Korra. She was by the docks, his arms around her waist. The Waterbender looked up at him and gave him a soft kiss. He smiled and buried his face into her hair, earning a small giggle from the girl. The Firebender chuckled as he breathed in her unique fiery ocean scent.
"Look!" she said pointing at the ship that headed towards them.
"It's General Iroh's ship," Mako replied. She nodded and smiled as it docked. Bumi came out of the ship first. He screamed loudly to make his presence known. The couple stifled a laugh when they saw Tenzin slightly cringe. His sibling's presence always made him nervous because he had to "entertain" them.
The Nonbender headed over to them and gathered them in a hug. "It's good to see you both!" he yelled with a laugh. Mako and Korra nodded as much as they could. For a Nonbender the man had a grip.
"Can't…breathe…" Korra managed to choke out. Bumi laughed loudly again and let them go. He noticed the betrothal necklace and smiled wildly.
"So you finally got around to it, eh pal?" he said as he slapped Mako on his back. The Firebender winced but nodded. "I wish you two the best," Bumi said with a grin. "Just try not to burn the house down," he added with a wink. The Avatar smiled and Mako put an arm around her waist.
"Little brother!" he screeched picking up Meelo and putting him on his shoulders before heading towards the main house. Tenzin sighed and followed his older sibling inside before he wrecked the house like he always did.
The General came out next and was greeted by his grandfather followed by everyone else. He looked over the crowd and smiled, walking towards the couple.
"Avatar Korra," he greeted, bowing. He took her hand and gave it a soft kiss and smiled at her. Mako stiffened. The Waterbender slightly blushed and gave him a small nod.
"General Iroh, this is my fiancé, Mako," she said, motioning to her Firebender.
"Oh, nice to meet you," he greeted, holding out his hand. The teenager looked at his hand but didn't hold out his until Korra lightly elbowed him. The Firebenders shook hands and went inside to have dinner.
Later that night he returned to his ship when he saw one approach the island. He tried to establish radio communication but it wouldn't respond so he decided to check it out. The General's ship almost reached the other when it started firing at it. Korra immediately dove into the bay to help. She went into the Avatar state and pushed the ship back with a powerful wave, making it topple on its side. She looked back to Iroh's ship and found the crew pointing at the water.
"The General fell!" the crew shouted. She dove under and spotted the Firebender as he sank deeper into the depths. She grabbed him and swam back up, gasping for air before paddling to shore. She dragged him into the sand before collapsing. He didn't move.
"Oh no. Oh no, no, no." She began shaking him. "You can't die on me, damn it!" she added, trying to get him to breath. When nothing worked gave him CPR.
Finally the Firebender coughed up the water in his lungs. She tried to pull away but he didn't let her and stole a kiss.
The Avatar smacked him and backed away, cringing when she saw a certain Firebender shaking with anger. He threw a fire ball at the general whom swiftly got on his feet to avoid it. Mako continued to throw attacks at him until Korra wrapped her arms around him.
"Don't, Mako," she pleaded.
"He kissed you!" he roared.
"I'm sorry!" Iroh called holding his hands up.
The Fire Ferret growled and took a step forward. Korra placed her hand on his cheek and made him look down at her. Her blue eyes held a silent plea. He growled again before looking up at the General.
"If you ever kiss my fiancé again it'll be the last thing you do," he threatened. Iroh gave him a nod.
Mako continued to glare at the man until he felt Korra shiver. He took off his jacket and wrapped it around her shoulders before heading back inside.
"I remember," she replied, placing a hand on her husband's cheek. "But that was years ago. You know I'm only yours. We have two wonderful children. Nothing is going to separate me from you."
Mako grumbled again. "You want to sleep, don't you?" he teased. She let out a sigh and smiled.
"I do," she admitted. "But only after you understand that I love you and only you."
He placed a hand on top of hers and gave her a soft kiss on the lips. Korra smiled and snuggled closer to his chest, a smile on her face.
"I love you too," he replied as he continued to run his fingers through her hair. Before they both knew it, they had drifted off to sleep.
"Mom! Dad!" the twins cried, running into their room. Korra grumbled and pulled the covers over her head, earning a chuckle from the Firebender next to her. He gently rubbed her back, making sure not to touch her back wound.
"Come on, Mom!" Mac whined, shaking his mother lightly. She let out a soft growl and pulled back the sheets to look at her little Waterbender who was grinning broadly. She couldn't help smiling.
"Dad, get out of bed already!" Karah said pulling her father's arm. He chuckled again as he helped his wife sit up.
"Why so early?" Korra grumbled as she ran her hand through her son's hair.
"General Iroh is going to be here soon!" the little Firebender cried. Mako let out a loud groan.
"That's all? I think I'll go back to bed," he said, lying down once again. The Avatar sighed and laid her head on his chest as she too laid back down, already closing her eyes again.
"Mom!" Mac yelled again.
"It's eight in the morning!" she whined, covering her face again.
"Yeah, yeah, the morning is evil," the twins said in sync. Mako chuckled and Korra smiled from under the covers.
"I don't like mornings either, Mom and I'm up," the little Waterbender admitted. She took off the covers again and sighed.
"Fine," she growled, sitting up again. The twins smiled and ran out of the room. Mako checked her back wound and frowned as he noticed it'd bled. The Firebender gently changed the bandages and helped her with her shirt. Once the couple was dressed they made their way to the main house.
Korra dozed off as soon as she and Mako sat on the couch. She put her head against his shoulder and drifted off to sleep. The Firebender adjusted her so that half her body was on his lap, cradling her like a child. Tenzin smiled softly at how careful he was with her. Katara took the moment to check her wound and assured Mako it was already closing and probably wouldn't scar.
At noon they heard a ship horn and the group quickly made their way to the docks. Mako gently woke Korra up, who nearly bit his head off until he explained that General Iroh had arrived. She sighed in defeat and he wrapped an arm around her waist as they followed the group.
General Iroh landed on the docks. He was wearing his traditional United Forces Uniform, he was clean shaven as always, though his hair seemed a little shorter than the last time they saw him. The Firebender smiled when he saw his grandfather approach him.
"It's so good to see you!" Zuko greeted giving him a strong hug. "How's your mother?"
"It's good to see you too, Grandpa Zuko," Iroh replied bowing his head. "Mom's great. She asked me to give you this letter," he added holding out an envelope. The elder smiled and took the paper before placing it in his pocket.
The General looked down to see a girl clinging onto his grandfather's robes. Zuko looked down and smiled before looking at his grandson. "Iroh, this is Sozi. She's your cousin."
Iroh's eyes widened a bit of the news. He stared at the child and he saw it. She had her grandmother's face, but surprisingly his grandfather's eyes. He smiled and knelt down to be at her level.
"Hello, you can call me little Iroh. That's what everyone used to call me when I was younger," he told her with a smile. Sozi grinned and jumped into his arms. He picked up the child and smiled.
"Looks like you two will be getting along," the elder commented as Sozi played with his badges.
"Hello Iroh," Tenzin greeted, giving him a handshake. Slowly the rest of the family greeted the Firebender until only the Avatar and her family were left. He gently put Sozi down and made his way towards her.
"Avatar Korra," he said with a bow, just as he had done last time. He held out his hand and she placed her left one in it, making sure that her wedding ring was visible. He smiled wider and gave it a quick kiss. "You are looking spectacular as usual."
The Waterbender managed a laugh. "Thank you. You look good yourself."
He smiled proudly and looked down to see two children on both her sides. He cocked his head to the side. They looked really familiar…
"Oh, Iroh, these are our children. Mac and Karah," she said with pride. "They're twins."
He gave a looked surprised and examined the children again. He noted that the boy had his mother's eyes and skin color. He looked over to the girl and saw she had her mother's hair color while her… Oh, he thought.
"Your daughter looks just like you, Mako," Iroh commented, looking over at the Firebender who had an arm wrapped around the Avatar's waist. "But your son looks like his mother, not to mention he has her eyes. Your daughter got her beauty from her too, didn't she?"
Mako gave him a stiff nod.
"I'm sorry; I haven't greeted you, have I? It's nice to see you, again," Iroh said, holding his hand out.
The Firebender shook his hand once, giving him another nod.
"Let's go inside and eat dinner," Zuko said with a smile as he led them to the main house.
Everyone sat around the table, chatting with each other or asking the General an enormous amount of questions. The children seemed to be very curious about him. They asked him to tell them stories. Korra sighed deeply and winced at the pain she was starting to feel in her back. She had agitated it with all the movement and wanted nothing more than to go to their house and be with her husband before he burned a hole into Iroh's head because of how Iroh had smiled at her.
Finally she became restless and whispered to Mako that she wanted to leave. He quickly got up and wrapped and arm around her when she swayed a little. Zuko looked up from his conversation and called them back for an announcement.
"I will be having a ball in honor of my grandson tomorrow night. You two are the guests of honor," the old Firebender stated with a smile.
Korra felt Mako's arms tense around her and yelped when he held her a bit too tight. He murmured an apology.
"Thank you but Korra is still a little sore from the sparring match. If she feel's up to it, we'll attend," the Firebender replied.
"The Avatar is hurt? How?" Iroh asked.
"I was sparring with my son and I crashed into some rocks," Korra explained.
The General looked over at the little Waterbender. "You should be careful. You could have seriously hurt your mother."
Mac went to his mother's side and buried his face into her shirt. She wrapped an arm around him and gently rubbed his back. Karah also placed a hand on his shoulder, trying to soothe her younger brother.
"I already talked to my son," Mako replied, trying to keep his voice even.
"I'm just making sure he understands what he could have done. Losing control could have-"
"That's enough," Korra said sharply. "I've already talked to my son. We don't need your input."
Iroh straightened but nodded. Zuko gave the Avatar a sharp nod as well and the family of four left.
"I hope she didn't take any offense to that," Iroh commented.
"Korra is very protective of her children. As his parents I'm sure they disciplined him," the elder replied. His grandson nodded and returned to his conversation, shrugging off the event.
The Avatar laid both children in bed. She tucked them in and gave them both a kiss on the cheek. She noticed her son was a bit quiet and she caressed his cheek.
"Don't worry about it, Mac," she soothed.
"He's right you know," he replied. Korra shook her head.
"No, he's not. I'm fine, aren't I? Now get some sleep. And don't let it bother you," she insisted before caressing her daughter's cheek and turning off the lights.
The Waterbender closed the door and made her way to her room until she felt something warm trickle down her back. She leaned on the wall for support, feeling a small wave of pain shoot through her back.
"Mako," she called. The Firebender came out and helped his wife get to bed before re-bandaging her again, wrapping it a little tighter to stop the bleeding. She sighed deeply and laid her head against his chest when he lay beside her. He wrapped an arm around her and ran his fingers up and down her back.
"Are you sure you don't want Katara to take a look?" he asked. She shook her head.
"It's just bleeding. I'm not in terrible pain."
He sighed deeply. "Are we going to go tomorrow?'
Korra sighed as well. "Zuko will never forgive us if we don't," she answered. The Firebender nodded. The old man could hold a grudge.
"Well if we do go, I hope he remembers to keep his mouth shut," he grumbled. Korra smiled before placing an arm over his chest.
"I'm sure he did. He knows better to mess with an overprotective Firebender and the Avatar," she teased.
Mako scowled but smiled when he heard his wife laugh.
"Stop being so jealous!"
"Me? Jealous?" he scoffed.
"Yeah. You, jealous!" she replied, pressing a finger against his chest. "I'm yours and no one else's," she added giving him a tender kiss.
"Yes, you are," he said with a grin. The Waterbender smacked his shoulder and he chuckled. "And you know I only have eyes for you," he added, kissing her head. Satisfied with his answer the Avatar drifted off to sleep, a smile on her face.
A man hung from the ceiling, chains around his wrists. He was shirtless with cuts and bruises all over his body. He spat out blood when he saw a radiantly beautiful woman saunter towards him. The man arrogantly smiled.
"So my assistant tells me you've been stealing from me." The woman began circling her prey.
"So he says," the man replied.
She touched his bare chest and leaned forward so that he could breathe in her scent. "And it isn't true?" she innocently asked, batting her long lashes at him.
The man blinked several times, trying to find his voice. "Well-uh, maybe once or um, twice," he stuttered.
"Do you know what happens when people steal from me?" she asked as her assistant handed her a whip. The man gulped and shook his head. She smiled before she placed a hand on his cheek and slowly sliced off the flesh there with her fingernails, causing the man to twist in pain.
"You know, my father used to keep rat-vipers as pets," she mused. "Their venom is extremely potent, don't you think?"
The man writhed in pain as his face began to swell. "Please, have mercy!" he pleaded, writhing as the venom from her nails caused the swollen flesh to turn a sickly yellow color.
She gave the man a look of mock pity. "I have no mercy for those who steal from me," she replied holding out her hand. "Kan?"
The Waterbender handed her a brown bag. "You remember when I said that my father owned rat-vipers?"
The man nervously nodded and the woman smiled wickedly. "Well, you're going to get to know one really well," she said as she covered his head with the sac, the reptile inside. The man screamed in pain as the animal tore his flesh. The woman sighed, as if the man's screams were music to her ears. Another man came inside and whispered something to Kan.
"Taren," he called. The woman walked over to her assistant. "General Iroh is on the move."
She cocked her head to the side. "And where is my little general running off to now? "
"My source says he's going to visit the Avatar."
Taren grinned in sick satisfaction. "So our beloved general is going to see the Avatar," she said thoughtfully, tapping her chin. "It would be rude of me not to pay my respects to her as well, don't you think Kan?"
The man grinned. "Of course."
"And I'm certainly not one to forget my manners. Get a ship ready. We leave in an hour," she instructed before looking over at the limp body of the man. "And get this trash out of here before he starts to smell," she added, leaving the cell.