This shall serve as my clumping grounds for parts of my "Fabulous Bending Brothers: Family, Malady, and the Aftermath" personal fanon series on AO3 that aren't already on FFN in some form. Most of these will be Makocentric or familycentric, since most of my currently written Bolincentric parts are in "Heart of Malachite".

.::.::.::.::.::.::.::.::.::RATINGS MAY VARY. ANYTHING ABOVE A K+ RATING WILL CONTAIN A NOTICE IN THE BEGINNING.::.::.::.::.::.::.::.::.::.::.::.

Chestnuts and Ash

Mako discovers he can bend with help from his parents and a chestnut.

Bolin is 2; Mako is 4.

The sun stretched that morning, rays striking along the gray sky- dawn's departure groggy and slow, clinging to the sky and marking it unblue. But the sun rose, and it slowly and powerfully elongated its influence on light. Dew clung to surfaces- the stone grounds of the city slick. Mist danced in the distance, obscuring. A tall, thin boy- ruffled from sleep- dragged across the home from his bed toward the airy coolness from the outside. He sleepily noticed a series of sacks blocking the exit and approached them as curiosity awakened him.

The biggest bag contained rice. The middle ones held a haphazard collection of fruit and vegetables: mandarins and green onions co-mingling. A small bag caught his attention: it was small and he found it easy to carry, if a bit heavy. He fiddled with the tie until it gave, and stuck his hand inside. Chestnuts.

His mother's heavy red robe trailing behind her- a shield against the cold of a new year's season- as she approached the fireplace in the corner. In her hand lay a clay pan evenly layered in wrinkled and puckered shelled chestnuts- the outer hull pried forcefully from the soft nuts by the strong hands of his father. But the delicious inside lay captive in a layer of a papery inner shell- something the flame from his mother's fingers on the wood would roast to a crackly, easily crumbling state.

Mako grasped a deeply colored nut- nearly the same color as his papa's favorite boots. He took it and tried to break it, trying to use the power in his fingers like he'd seen nearly a year prior. But his fingers were delicate and long, not burgeoning with power or inexplicable finger muscles. And they were small, so small they fit comfortably around the a single aforementioned finger. But they were big enough to dwarf his brother's- he was only a baby.

The nut's wall would not crack or give. But he wanted the sweet, gentle taste of softened chestnuts in their sugarcane nectar, sticky-ing his hands and face. So he walked to the fireplace, stubborn snack in hand. He touched the flaky remnants of a fire: croaking black stalks and gray sand. He at least needed the papery part taken care of, so he placed the chestnut on top of a pile of the gray sand he made himself.

He touched the sand with blackened hands, waiting for a fire to burst into life. Nothing happened. Now annoyed: the hull wouldn't budge and now he couldn't even get the fire going. He touched the sand differently, trying different sides and different sizes of ash mounds. Thoroughly angered, he screamed at the fireplace and the unyielding walnut, pointing at it in rage. An acrid scent exploded, as black smoke rose from the burning chestnut.

I wrote one of these for Bolin as well- but it's a chapter in "Heart of Malachite". I hope I wrote about Mako well: he's not my favorite character, but I don't want my bias to show.

Mako's parents were making Kuri no Kanroni, a Japanese chestnut sweet. This took a longer time to write than it seems: I had to think of something for Mako to do in order to discover his firebending, and then I decided on chestnuts. But my original idea was too western. I had to do some more research, which is where Kuri no Kanroni came from. To top all this off, I have no idea what chestnuts taste like by themselves or in Kuri no kanroni- good thing the recipe had a description of the taste on it. lol this note is longer than the fic itself.

Reviews make my heart beat faster. Thanks for reading, wanderer!