Never See Me Coming!
(Besnik and the Avatar, from Nightfall: The Lich)
He took my hands, and looked deep into my eyes. I shuddered at his touch, a warmth and comfort that I was not accustomed to, and withdraw them from his grasp. An outcast from my kind, I was forced to wander alone without friends or family, only for me to find a light from the despairs of reality. He gave me a home, a purpose, comfort and…
He reached out again and grabbed my hand, pulling it away from me and toward him. I did not pull away that time, allowing him to draw me closer to him. He whispered my name softly. “Besnik,” he said, the name leaving his lips warm and lovingly. I do in turn his name, however, the name refused to leave my lips, and instead I silently mouthed his name. But he smiled all the same and drew me closer still, my body obeying and moving toward him.
He placed his hand softly against my cheek, running his thumb along the curve beneath my eye. He placed his other against my back and drew me as close as he could, placing his chest against mine. My eyes were locked with his, and I found myself lost in the pool of color surrounded by a sea of white. I could no longer draw away, neither my body nor mind would allow me; I wouldn’t even if I could. He leaned in toward me slowly. I closed my eyes…
“We’re under attack!” My eyes shot open to the dark, empty sky of night; not even the stars were out that night. The camp was in an uproar, as I could hear the clashing of metal and smelt the faint scent of smoke and blood. “Get up lad!” Captain Raphael soon filled my sight, the clicking and whirling of gears alerting me of his presence long before he was in sight. “Dream time’s over, Besnik. We were followed, and now a small unit of the Central Army have come to say ‘hello.’ Hop to it!”
I scrambled to my feet as Raphael ran into battle, sword held high. I reached to my sides and drew my knives from my sheathes, and followed the captain into the fray of battle. As I covered the distance between camp and the battleground, the cries from the Venelatrian soldiers made their purpose all too clear: “Death to the Avatar! Kill the Dark God’s vessel!” Like hell, I thought. I’ll see them all dead and soaked in blood before I let them lay even a single finger on him.
I smiled as I saw him, fending off a pair of soldiers who were dumb enough to try to take him on alone. He moved with grace, dodging their attacks with ease and felling them with swift, precise swings of the sword. Granted, that was more likely the Dark God’s work than anything, but still, it made me smile seeing it.
I began running toward him when I caught it out of the corner of my eye. In the shadows, unbeknownst to everyone else, an archer had crept behind the battle and now had his sights lined on the avatar. The soldier readied his bow and drew back his arrow as he lined up his sight. He was too far for me to stop him and panic began to overtake my mind, fogging my mind with hundreds of horrid thoughts and images. I could hear him, just barely, as he whispered “Glory to the goddess” and loosed his arrow.
At that moment, all thought stopped, and pure, animal instincts kicked in. For once, my curse of being a monster helped me. I suppose I should be grateful for it. Driven and set upon a single goal, I forced my body as fast as it could go and lunged into the path of the arrow.
The sharp pain in my shoulder drug my mind back to focus and I let loose a harsh cry of pain. I grasped at my shoulder, unable to move it without great pain radiating throughout my body. The others quickly took notice as the other soldiers were dealt with, and rushed to my aid. As the others moved to deal with the archer, Raphael and the avatar remained at my side. “You idiot!” he cried. “Why would you do that? Why risk your life for me!?”
“Because I love you! I have ever since you should me such kindness back at Venelatria. I had no one, alone without a single person to lean on. I’ve always been alone, even amidst my family and the people of my tribe. My own brother abandoned and exiled me when I refused the girl he would have me to marry. But you should me kindness when I deserved none, and helped me when others would have simply passed me by, even though you knew the consequences of doing so. I am a monster and a risk to your very lives, but still you do not turn me away. I did it because I love you and want to spend the rest of my life with you!”
By the gods, how I wanted to say that. Those words screamed in my mind, pushed violently against the back of my teeth. The pleaded, begged, for me to loose them; to speak my heart’s true feelings. As much as wished, I kept these words locked up, for I know these feelings to be unrequited. After all, I’m a monster; a poor soul cursed with an uncontrollable power that kills enemy and friend alike. And even still, I could never hope to replace the one he truly loves. He left all he knew, traversed the world, and faced the greatest of dangers, all for her sake. So I swallowed those words and said all that I could. “Because you’re my friend!”
Yes, friend. Those words stabbed me harder and deeper than any arrow could manage, and left my heart in horrible pain. However, I knew that would be all I could ever be to him. A friend. But if that meant I could stay by his side, then so be it. If at least that, I could be happy.
What you're about to read, is based on things about my life, that I've never had the courage to say.
I don't know about you, but when I see couples during lunch, at school. It frustrates me so much to no end. Don't get me wrong, I'm happy to see that they have someone special so early in their life's, especially my friends. It's just that, they are so lucky that the person they can gaze their eyes at. See their smile reflect off uve' their eyes, but the biggest thing is that they both get to go to the same school, or even at least belong both in the same city. It feels like your just the odd one out, awkwardly seeing all these relationships around you.
I grabbed whatever the school calls 'healthy' food from the food hall, which today in this case consists of whole grain white rice, orange chicken, and an a small amount uve' apple juice. I seriously don't get why we get free juice, but we have to pay a dollar for a bottle uve' water. After I had gotten my lunch, I walked out uve' the hall and waited for the rest uve' my friends. Once we had gotten out uve' the envoy uve' chaos from the lunch line, we regrouped and walked over to our table. I usually begin eating my apple while we get there. To avoid any awkward silence, my group decided to talk about this years prom. I usually just drown them out when it comes to stuff like that, and I just looked around as they conversed. I turned my head over to my right and saw Gaby. She was sitting at her table with her friends; it doesn't look like she's talking much though. She was always a quiet girl, that's not a bad thing at anyway. Especially since her smile always spoke for herself.
I looked away before; she could or at least had the chance to see me looking at her. One uve' my friends nudged me with his shoulder. I looked over at him to hear him say "Hey! Are you going to prom this year? You usually never go to any of the dances." "Uh, I'll see if I can. No promises though. Okay?" I replied. I really wish I could make it a promise though, but you can do only so much when the person you love, lives about two cities away. My group sat down on our table and began to eat. I finished the last bite uve' my apple, throwing it in to the trash can near us, barely hitting the rim then in. Before I started to dig in, I took out my phone and looked at my text messages. Rereading the messages she and I had sent to each other.
They were mostly composed uve' 'I love you's and wishing each other a great day. Neither uve' us had any time to get a chance to talk to each other anymore, so that's all we could say until we had any time on our hands. I know they're just text messages an all, but when we have ever those texts, I felt happiness had kissed my soul. I swiped my phone screen up and down just to see all uve’ our I love you's. Seeing my blue heart emojis, and her gold ones. Who knew that just putting a heart could so much more meaning in a text? I felt my shoulder getting tapped on, it was rather a light touch this time, so I know it wasn't a guy or anything. I pressed the power button to turn off my phones screen.
I turned around to see Kodee, yes Kodee. It makes the name Noel sound kind uve' normal doesn't it? It wasn't just that part uve' her name was unique, but how fitting her last name was, Brown. Anytime I had the chance to look at her, I could notice right away her big bright brown eyes, dark chocolate brown hair. I guess you can see the picture of why her last name fits, can you? I smiled and greeted her. "Hey Kodee, you need something?" I normally never talked to her, heck this is actually the first time I talked to Kodee. I only know her cause uve' my friends. She smiled back and asked me a question. "No, I don't need anything, but I was just wondering. Are you going to prom?" "O-oh. No, not this year. I'm sorry." I said, this time I tried hiding the sadness in my head, disguising that I was just busy.
After that I said that to Kodee, I noticed that her smiled went away slowly, only changing just a small fraction, she said to me "It's okay, but if you change your mind, tell me!"
Then off she went, I turned back to face the middle uve' the table, to see my friends look at me with these faces. The faces were like; did you really turn her down? You didn't need words to understand how my friends felt. Then seconds later, they had gotten back to eating. I pushed my lunch in the middle uve' the table, usually that was a sign that meant you weren't hungry and you were giving your food up. I grabbed my backpack and unzipped the smallest pocket, reaching for my white ear buds. I plugged them in on my phone and played music. I raised up the volume just slightly to where it overpowered everyone's voices, but I could still hear them if they were talking to me. I folded my arms on the table and laid my head on them.
Why can't she go to my school? Or at least why can't I go to her's? Things would be so much different, if it would happen. We would uve' never broken up. It's been almost two years since then. At least knowing before our break up, I knew I was hers. But now, I feel like I'm not apart uve' her life as much as it used to be. My friend called out my name. "Hey Noel.." I looked up, letting my head still rest on my arms. "Yeah? "I murmured. "You alright? You seem sad..." "A..a little.." Now this particular friend, he doesn't change his expression much, but I just knew that he was worried. "I know there's something wrong, can you tell me?" I nestled my head in my arms, still allowing my mouth space to speak freely. I let my eyes look down, for a few seconds then back up to look at him. "You don't have to worry. Okay?" "Why not?" He quickly replied.
I easily know why, but being able to say it. Felt like it was entirely impossible. My whole body felt like it was slowly turning cold. I struggled to manage to say right words. It didn't feel like they words I wanted to say though. "Look, you don't have to. Okay? I-I'm just..not worth your time." My voice started feeling like it was breaking off its course. I don't want my friends to know what feelings I've been really hiding. I was on the urge uve' having tears come down on my eyes. He said softly. "If you say so Noel.." For the rest uve' lunch, I played music in my ears, laid my head on my arms, and thought about being with her.
"It's almost 6...” I looked at the clock that was next to my bed, hollowing staring at the blue Digital lines. I absolutely have done nothing when I got home from school. All I did was fall into my bed and listen to sappy songs about love. This isn't the first time, that this, depression had hit me, but this is this the first time that it hit me so hard. I picked up my phone that was lying on my bed, and changed the song. Finding another tune that could fit my mood, letting my self being able to bring tears down my cheeks. I laid there feeling like nothing. I grabbed my once more, to go in my photos and look at her. I only have one photo uve' her. It isn't much, but I'm grateful that I have it. I stated at my phones screen, looking at her beautiful face. Seeing those bright eyes, that adorable smile. Her dark brown hair. She's just perfect. She is my dream girl.
I had to do it. I picked myself up from my bed, and sat myself against the wall. I looked at her picture for a few more seconds. Then I went on to my phone to call her. I want to hear her soft angelic voice in my ears. I tapped on the little icon, and called her. These next 30 seconds felt like it was sheer silence, my heart was beating faster than a drum and bass song. I could literally feel like my heat beat out uve' my chest. I patiently waited for to pick up, but. It went to voice mail. Maybe she's just busy again? I'll try one more time. I tapped to end the call, and call again. I waited, and this time my heart beat felt a little more tamed than what it was before. It usually takes about 30 seconds for it to go to voicemail, come on. Please pick up, I want to your hear voice, just for a few seconds. Please. Then, just the same robotic, dead and unemotional voice which was the complete opposite uve' what I wanted to hear.
I ended the call, and played my music again. As I did so, I slowly leaned to my right to lie on my bed once more. Guess I have to talk to her another time. I rolled over to my side, looking blankly at the open space uve' my room. Then my eyes drifted off to the space that's left on my bed. I pictured her on it, having her lay on her side even as well facing me. She looked so beautiful, my tears started falling. I wanted her in this bed next to me. Having my arm around her, feeling her warm up my cold lonely soul, feeling her love give me hope. I closed my eyes, and softly cried myself to sleep.
It was around 10:30. I had just woken up, and I don't feel tired at all. Looks like I'm not gonna get any more sleep tonight. I turned my self on the other side so I didn't have the temptation to look at my phone. I thought about her again, it just made me really want to be with her. I want to be in her life more, just to make her smile. Cause I know when she's happy, I'm happy...but I'm sad when she's happy, with someone else. I know that there are so many more guys that are better than me, and they are so lucky that even go to the school with her. It's frustrates me so much knowing that I'm lucky to have met her, but not being lucky as them. I hope her friends know how genuinely lucky they are too. Being able to see her adorable smile of hers, when she talks to them. I would love to spend one full day with her. I closed my eyes once more, trying to force myself to sleep once more. I couldn't though; I felt a weird buzzing on my bed. I looked around me to see what it was, until I realized it was behind me. I turned around and saw that, she was calling me. I looked at her name, then her caller ID picture. I answered the call.
"I love you so much too..."
"Well, I'm in love with you so much, that I can't sleep anymore....because being with you is so much better than my dreams.”
You were always there for me. That is something I will never forget. The first visits to the hospital were the most influential, for those were the ones where the doctor explained to you in great detail about my condition. Though I expected you to become lost during the elaborate and lengthy discussion surrounding my grey matter, you astounded me in how easily you understood the complexity that had, until then, eluded me. You put it into words that made far more sense than anything the doctors could ever conceive. You held my hand the entire visit, squeezing tightly, almost as if you could chain me to this world simply by having you by my side. I remember the strained look you gave as the doctor explained how the clot in my brain could—at any moment-- become a fatal catastrophe. You had given another squeeze at that exact moment, and I distinctly remember squeezing back. That would be the first time I began returning all the emotions you had been showing me. It was from that moment that I knew I would not need to face this alone. Even with Daniel by my side, I had always felt an immense feeling of isolation. But with you, it was as if an entirely different world was open to me. Where Daniel could only offer words of encouragement and sincere empathy, you offered much more. You stood beside me like a lighthouse to a shored city, always watching. Always protecting.
My thoughts, usually of deep resentment and sorrow, were replaced with hope and something I liked to believe was joy. Where I would usually harshly dislike entering the aforementioned hospital, I would now meet it with a head held high and fingers interlocked with yours. It was during one of these ever present visits that we were given the most unexpected news. In what most people would call a fateful day, the doctors told me I had only months to live. The clot had increased in size and should it grow any larger my brain would suffocate from the lack of oxygen. I took the news like I took everything else in my life: indifference. If I was to die, then so be it. So long as you were alive and lived in relative happiness, nothing else mattered to me. But your reaction changed that; it shook me to my very core. You wept. You clinged to my chest tightly and embraced me even tighter. I had never cried before. Never shed a tear for myself nor did I ever do so again. But for what was yet another first, I wrapped my arm around you, dug my head into your shoulder and cried. The mere thought of leaving you in such a state was more than I could ever hope to bare. We asked about treatments: there were none. The clot was far too deep and far too close to safely operate on, and even if they managed to remove it, that would only serve to treat the symptom, not the underlying cause of my genetic disorder. I held your hand as I told you everything would be fine. We would spend the rest of our time together in happiness, live out my remanding weeks as something for you to remember and cherish. You convinced me otherwise. You told me such an idea, though considerate, was also selfish. You had told me that a happy memory of us during the darkest times would be more painful than a rusty nail to the temple.
Though highly evasive and dangerous, you talked the doctor into performing the surgery. It was classified as an 'experimental procedure' in order to even get approved by the committee. The chances of my survival were slim, but if the surgery was successful, I might be able to place this behind me. The clot that had been my birth brother might be removed, and there might be no sign of his return, genetics be damned. The very motion of being rid of a pained head—to never again suffer the dull ache that served as a constant reminder of my condition—was something that had never crossed my wounded mind. The chances of my death were high, but as you sat next to me while I was being prepared for surgery, there was no doubt I would come out of this alive. As the mask was placed over my mouth, I quickly realized how much of a beacon you had become to me. The doctors had claimed this surgery too dangerous, but it was I and I alone who refused to take part of it. The doctors themselves easily folded into performing the surgery. Had I simply brought it up, I am almost positive they would have agreed to operate. You had given me the courage to go under, and I found myself clawing for your hand as the anesthetic had begun to shut me down, Your fingers interlocking into mine, along with a wet tear drop upon my wrist were the last things I felt as darkness surrounded me.
I met with Allen. He served me tea and inquired of my condition. In an attempt to repair the bridge between us, I indulged him, and even informed him of the surgery. I ignored the pity in his eyes as I drank. They reminded me of the same look you had given me when we had first met, and I could easily see how you two had been so close in the past. However, despite his kind words and remarks of condolence, it was not hard for me to see the bitterness that bubbled under the surface. I had planned on staying for an hour, but his harshness and general disdain for me cut my plans into a half hour venture. Before I parted, I asked him for your scrapbook. The glare he had given me was more than enough to realize it was a mistake, but to my surprise he went up to his room and retrieved the aged red book. He shoved it into my arms and asked me to leave. I have left the scrap book in our bedroom; under my pillow. I know I shouldn't think like this but if the surgery were to take me from you, I, at the very least, wanted you to have your memories in tact. I understand the photos of your family are important and this is the very least I could do for you.
Bright light etched in front of me. I felt as if I was looking up from the bottom of a well, and could make out faces at the top looking down. You were one of them. The doctor moved the small flashlight from one eye to the other, checking to see if my pupils responded. I began to stir, but a hand on my chest pushed me back down and I was instructed to remain still. I could feel the bandages upon my forehead, wrapped around my cranium, almost as if it alone was stopping my head from splitting into two. I was given a series of tests as I was informed on the surgery. The surgeon had removed the clot, only for it to slowly reform as soon as they began cleaning. Though at the time it was small, the doctors could already trace its growth. It seems my genetics refused to let me loose of its death grip. The particular vein the clot resided in was damaged. Surgery had shown there would be no repairing it, nor would there be any treatment. Judging by the growth of the clot, the doctors gave it a year for it to return to its previous size, as well as my most likely time of death. Though I had managed to survive, the operation was a failure.
We did our best to return to normal. You happily showed me images from your scrapbook. You told me your fifth birthday was the most memorable as you pointed to your younger self whom was sitting proudly beside her cake. You went through every photograph, going into great detail about the events that transpired during its taking. You hesitated as you reached photos of Allen before calmly removing them from their plastic bindings and throwing them into the trash. As you returned, you sat next to me on the couch and embraced me. You told me how unfair the world was, and I agreed with you as I ran my fingers through your hair. I wondered what it was like to live free of pain as my hand held the back of your head. What was it like to never sit beside Death every waking moment? I felt a familiar dull pain in the back of my head as your tear stained cheek swept past my own. We stayed like this for a while, unmoving. Almost as if we could stop time simply by refusing to go along with it. Finally, you pushed me down and laid beside me, making due with the small amount of room the couch offered. I held on to you tightly as you did the same, and we fell asleep in each other's arms as the rotating beam of light from the nearby lighthouse rounded past the window, lulling us away from our consciousness.
Though neither of us acknowledged it, we had quickly made our way to the dreaded second year since the surgery. I had neglected to return to the hospital two weeks prior to the beginning of the year, but according to my last visit the progression had continued as expected. I packed the map we had acquired into my bag before setting foot into your car. We were to visit your mother; you wanted to finally introduce me as well as give her the scrapbook. Daniel, having just finished his nursing program, was to be assigned to the hospital near your mother's house, and as a result asked for permission to join us so that he might become familiar with the area. He had packed his medical bag as well, claiming that he needed to make sure his personal equipment was up to par with what was expected from him. Though our coastal town was frequently cloudy and overcast, it seemed as if we were to be accompanied by a rare clear blue sky. I should have known better than to see this as a good omen.
As you pulled into the freeway overpass, Daniel informed me from the backseat of his excitement. Despite gaining access to the hospital in our own small town, he yearned for a large temple to hone his skills, as did you. Though while Daniel practiced medicine, you instead made your way through the world with a camera as your tool. The usual cloud-stricken state of our home was without a doubt the main reason you had decided to move to Red Port. To the people who lived there it was nothing but another reminder of how dark the world could be, but you saw more than that. You saw the opportunity for light to be shed and pierce through the darkness. You saw hope where others saw despair, you saw the chance to lift burdens from the shoulders of others. You saw life. I often wonder if that was the same reason you were drawn to me. We had passed through a tunnel as the freeway border ended.
By the time Daniel yelled out, it was far too late for you to maneuver the car to safety. I clung desperately at the dashboard as you clenched your teeth and pressed down on the breaks while turning the wheel. It was not enough, however, and the renegade car heading toward us tracked your movement as if the heavens themselves willed it. I could see the driver's face as time seemed to slow. I will never forget his face: pale, shaved head, black baseball cap, and covered in sudden realization and horror. There was a terrible lurch as the two cars collided, stopping us dead in our tracks.
You had once told me that, as a child, you often picked wild blackberries. You would gamble on them, hoping the ones you picked were ripe and sweet. It wasn't until a few summers of this you realized even the bitter ones were full of flavor. You told me that not everything one expected from this world was sweet. Instead, the bitterness we experience only helped us enjoy the sweet moments all the more. But where was the sweetness in this? How can one look back on their most bitter and hated memories and grow stronger from them? I know you can tell me the answer, so please. Isabelle, please.
A terrible shock coursed through my body, jolting my chest upwards. Another came a few seconds later, and I briefly heard Daniel's voice through the darkness. A third shock thundered past my heart as my eyes opened. A bright blue sky welcomed me along with the smell of smoke and Daniel's tear-filled voice. I sat upright in a daze, trying my best to take in my surroundings. Your white car. His red truck. Daniel, one black eye and medical bag opened as he held on to his small defibrillator, the wires of which were strapped to my exposed chest. The driver of the truck, nearly ejected from his seat, had broken his windshield and his upper body lay across the destroyed hood, his head a bloody mess. I couldn't see you. I asked Daniel, but he only shook his head. I staggered to my feet and limped my way around the totaled vehicle. I froze as I rounded to the driver's side. Daniel had at first, pulled you from the wreckage and laid you on the floor. He checked your pulse, but said you were already...
He pulled my body next, saying that I had suffered trauma, though not as severe as yours and managed to pull me back from the brink. I kneed beside you. I held your hand. I wept. Aside from a cut across your forehead, you looked perfect. I saw no ill marks or bruises, not a single indication that would let me believe you to be gone. You looked as if you were asleep, but already your hand was so cold. The sounds of sirens filled the air as I looked up at the clear blue sky. It was almost mocking me.
We were rushed to the hospital. The same damned hospital I had been condemned to since the day of my birth. The doctors informed me that the impact hit you the hardest, causing instant death. Had Daniel not been with us, I most likely would have followed suit. Instead I only had a broken arm and bruised ribs. They told me I was lucky. I disagreed. They told me the driver of the truck was drunk. I disagreed. I refused to believe that something like this would take me away from you. It had to be some higher order, it must be! He was not drunk, Isabelle! There was no way something like this—a random act of chaos—would take you! I cared not for his name, nor did I care about his fate, all I cared for was knowing the truth. I rejected the notion of whims and luck and instead spiraled into my own mind.
I had done this. Had I not asked Allen for the scrapbook. Had I not asked about your family. Had I not been born with this cursed disorder you would still be here. It should have been me. Given the chance, I would—in a heartbeat—trade my life for yours. I knew this was not to be, however, and could do nothing as the days ticked down to your funeral. It was another cloudless day as your coffin sat on the green grass. Why had the universe decided this? Were they acknowledging your loss as their gain? Had they picked you in greed and stolen you away from me? I met with Allen again. He attended the funeral and I could not ignore the rage that flashed behind his eyes. He too, saw me as the culprit. As he approached me, I expected to receive a blow to the face and was not disappointed. I tried not to flinch, but instead I nearly fell backward as his fist connected with my jaw. He walked away from me without saying a word and sat in his seat, staring at your coffin. In my mind, he had every right to be upset with me. Why should I be the one left to live?
It wasn't until your coffin began lowering that I realized my folly. This last year had showed me happiness. It showed me what it meant to be a part of something larger than myself. I learned how to live. How to love. I raced past memories of us as your coffin touched the Earth. Of our first meeting near the lighthouse. Of how you orbited around me despite my pushing you away. Finally allowing you access into my life. Moving in together. Seeing you just come out of the shower, your hair still wet. Sharing a seat among the coast as the tide threatened to wash us away. Our first kiss under the moonlit shore. The first time you accompanied me to the hospital. The warmth you had provided during the cold winter. The way you always stood across the front door, looking out the window with a handful of blackberries as I entered our home. The pained look on your face I always wanted to ask about, but never found the courage to do so. Your fingers, interlocking perfectly between my own, as if they were designed for one another.
The doctors said that the clot that had threatened my life had miraculously shrunk after the accident. I have no proof, but I am certain this was also your doing. Giving me more time seemed as if it was something you would do. You always worried about the welfare of others more than your own. You were—and still are—my beacon in this world. Much like the lighthouse that never rests, you still protect me and show me the way forward. I will never stop believing you. I will never stop loving you. I know you are still out there, watching over me and I look forward to the day I join you, my Isabelle.
She was so beautiful. As I sat there on the edge of the bed looking down at her beautiful face, I pictured ‘forever’ with her. I felt like I could see each day that would pass us by and beyond. It was the kind of love that some would say transcends space and time.
It was our 15 year anniversary. 15 years is a very long time to be together. It’s not the anniversary of our marriage or anything like that, I haven’t quite found the right time to pop the question yet. But I would soon, hopefully, because I want to make that kind of official commitment. She deserves it… She deserves everything.
As I leaned over her sleeping body and looked down at her beautiful face, I smiled and began to run my fingers through her silky, golden-brown hair. It was long and wavy and perfect, perfect like her. I know they say that nobody is perfect, and that’s probably true. My biggest flaw must have been overlooking hers, because no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t find anything wrong with her.
Not wanting to wake her, I slowly moved away and got off of the bed. Still smiling, I looked around the room to try and figure out what to do while I waited. After a moment, I decided to take a look at my old VHS tapes. I had an old bulky camera, and many kids these days have probably never seen anything like it. I used to record things all the time, things I never wanted to forget.
I moved my finger along the tapes slowly until I landed on one. This one was about four years old; I actually didn’t film it myself. It was the tape from her first day at her dream job, being a news reporter. I simply recorded it on the VCR, but all the same it belonged in the memory pile with everything that I had filmed.
I turned on the television and turned it down to about 2; glancing back at her to make sure the brief noise didn’t wake her. Confirming that I was safe, I pushed the tape into the VCR and watched. It was obvious she was nervous, but also obvious that she was happy. Her smile was genuine, and her eyes appeared to be staring right into your soul. It was actually a little odd watching this without really being able to make out what she was saying, but it still stirred up my nostalgia. I was so happy for her when she got that job; she still works there today and has the same genuine smile whenever she’s on the TV.
I stopped the tape and hit the rewind button. Looking back at my tapes, I found another one that I hadn’t watched in a while. It was of her college graduation eight years ago. She got her bachelor’s degree in journalism, but it still took her four more years before she landed her job. She never gave up though, and she was willing to move anywhere if it meant following her dream. I wasn’t going to stop her from getting what she wanted. All I could ever ask for is that she is happy. If that called for a move, then so be it, I would drop whatever I might be doing and pack up. It’s not like I have the same kind of dream she does, my dream is to simply live out my life with her, and I think 15 years of being together is a step in the right direction.
I switched out the tapes and began watching her college graduation. I had my camera heaved up and recorded her in her blue cap and gown. The video cut in and out sometimes, but that was just me turning off the camera to preserve power every once in a while when she wasn’t really doing anything. As she was handed her degree people cheered and yelled her name, she was very popular indeed. You could even see her parents in the very bottom left corner of the screen. Her dad was cheering and pumping his fist in the air, and I’m pretty sure her mother was crying. Although the crying was debatable, it wasn’t actually shown on camera, but was simply a memory of my own.
Once I was finished, I rewound the tape and shut off the TV. I stood up and looked back over at the bed where she was still sleeping. It was a very small apartment in a building in the middle of town, but it was home. The bedroom was the living room, and there was a bathroom and kitchen attached. I didn’t really suspect that she would be okay with staying here very much longer, so I had already started looking for a bigger place. We’d discuss it eventually I suppose.
My gaze drifted from the bed to a picture sitting on the nightstand. What a blast from the past. Even though the picture was right next to where I slept every night, I hadn’t really just sat down and took a look at it for a long time. I picked up the picture and found myself sitting down on the edge of the bed again. It was the picture from our senior prom 12 year ago. We were so young back then; it was crazy to think about. She wore a long red dress that was just a little poofy on the bottom half. The dress really accentuated her figure. She was a pretty average height, only a little bit shorter than me. I looked on at the picture, dazzled by her youth. Her hair that night was very curly. I made my way down the picture from her hair to her beautiful blue eyes. I could just swim in those eyes, they’re like two little oceans in everything I would call my world. I continued down to her smile. She had cute little teeth splitting her pink lips. Those lips would lift up her cheeks to form the only smile I had ever loved. She was a bit self-conscious about her smile, but everyone is self-conscious about something. If only she could see herself the way I see her. I continued down further to her flawless neck. Around it was a silver necklace with a little blue pendant that only further brought out her eyes. Further down past her shoulders you could see the dress covering her breasts, revealing the last bit of her tender peachy skin until you came all the way down to her ankles, where she wore some silver shoes that revealed her toes.
She is such a beautiful, amazing person, and I have so many fond memories of her. At our prom, we were both over at the table where food was laid out for all of the students. There was cheese, there were pretzels, and there were all kinds of fruit. But most impressive of all was the miniature chocolate fountain. After eating some cheese squares, I decided to grab a strawberry with a toothpick and take a little dip in the fountain with it. This ended being a tad more literal than I expected. As I took a bite out of the delicious chocolate covered strawberry, a gob of chocolate rolled off of the strawberry, down my chin, and dripped straight down onto my rental jacket. I quickly turned to get a napkin and try to wipe it off when I bumped into her and got chocolate on her dress.
“Oh no…” She said as she looked at her dress. She started wiping it off with a napkin as best as she could.
“I am so sorry!” I stammered, “I just… It was-“
“Don’t worry about it,” she said as she smiled. She took the napkin and started wiping off my jacket. “It looks like we’re just going to have to keep you away from the chocolate fountain is all.”
I smiled back at her, and we shared a good laugh. I will never forget how easily she just brushed it all off. I figure any other girl would have freaked out about their dress, but she was very understanding of my clumsiness.
I finally sat the picture back down and opened up the drawer under the nightstand where I kept my photo album and my journal. I lifted the journal out and closed the drawer. I have had this journal since even before her. I was very selective about when I wrote in it, because while it was fairly large, I didn’t like the idea of having to get a new journal when the pages in this one were filled up. I began flipping through the pages, and found my entry from 15 years ago.
April 8, 1999
I noticed this girl today, a girl I had never seen before. I guess she was new, she had started going to our school not too long ago, but she was in different classes than me. I looked at her from across the lunchroom and she was the most beautiful girl I’d ever seen! I wish I had at least one class with her so that maybe we could get sat next to each other, or assigned to be partners on a project, anything. Anything to help me break the ice… I don’t have the courage to just walk up to her and say something. For now I guess we’ll just have to go to the same school and eat in the same lunchroom, but live in different worlds. But we’ve been brought this close together, and I’m sure that someday we’ll be in the right circumstances to live in the same world together.
Wow, I was such a sap. But I couldn’t help it; I always just wrote exactly what I was feeling at the time. Why not, these journal entries were for me and me alone, and I liked being able to read them again and go back to exactly where I was at that point in time. I decided that today was another good day for an entry. Exactly 15 years after I laid eyes on her and wrote that entry, the timing seemed perfect.
I spent some time trying to think of exactly what to write, because I had so much going through my head. I wanted to write down everything I had just thought about, everything she made me feel… Eventually, I came up with something I was satisfied with, and I slipped my journal back into the drawer.
I turned once more to look at her and got that warm sensation in my body. I lay down on the bed this time and moved in close to her. Oh how I wished she would just wake up so I could start spending this day with her. I wanted to tell her about everything I had thought about this morning. I wanted to share it all with her. I could hear some kind of fuss in the hallway, but I ignored it. I wrapped my arm around her and moved in closer. She was all curled up in the blanket. I could hear her little breaths pushing out of her nose since her mouth was covered by that white fabric. I slowly began to close my eyes…
“This is the police! Open up now!” I rolled over and looked at the door. This was not about to happen.
“I won’t ask again, open the door!” I opened my drawer and reached over my journal and my photo album. My finger hit the wood at the back of the drawer, and I moved my hand left- there was the magazine. I pulled it out and stuck my hand back in. I sent it directly to the right this time and there was my gun. I pulled out my pistol and inserted the magazine. I turned to look at her again, and she was waking up.
“Don’t worry, I won’t let them take you away from me,” I said to her as I ran my fingers through her hair again. Her eyes got wide and filled with tears. She started making mumbling noises, but I couldn’t really understand her due to the white cloth I had tied around her mouth.
I stood up just as the police kicked down the door, and without another word I opened fire. I managed to hit one of them in the shoulder, but my accuracy really wasn’t the best. I didn’t practice shooting much ahead of time; I guess I wasn’t really planning on them finding me. As I continued to fire, I felt a couple sharp pains in my body. The first was in my left arm, so it was a good thing that I was right handed. The second was in my leg, and I fell back onto the bed, landing on her. She must have been so scared. The police hesitated while I was on her, probably because they didn’t want to hurt her. Anyone else would have used this to their advantage, but I didn’t want them to hurt her either, so I rolled off of the bed to find myself lying on the floor and I proceeded to fire at the doorway. I heard a click from my now empty gun just as I experienced the final shock of pain. My chest started to feel very warm, and I let my head slowly fall to the ground. I dropped my gun and reached up to my chest with my hand, my God it hurt.
Everything started to look funny. I watched as two blurry figures ran in to try and take her away from me. I felt so helpless; there was nothing I could do. Another figure started to come towards me. Who was it? I didn’t want to see anybody but her. Things started getting so dark, and I couldn’t find her anywhere. Wait, maybe this blur coming towards me was her? Maybe she was coming over to tell them to leave me be, she could have been coming to help me. Just maybe… she... might…
“Good morning detective,” the receptionist said as I walked in.
“Morning to you too. I’m heading straight down to evidence, so if anybody needs me that’s where I’ll be.” I continued to walk on by and made my way to the evidence room check-in. Once admitted, I headed in to find my partner hard at work.
“You find anything yet?” I asked him as I headed over to see what he was into.
“You want to know what I found? I found out that this guy was a complete nut. Good thing he’s terrible with a gun, only managed to hit an officer in the shoulder. Anyways, come here, just look at some of this stuff,” I moved in closer as he pulled over a photo album and began flipping through it, “Every single one of these picture is of the victim, but get this: most of them were either downloaded online, or he took them himself.”
I was a little puzzled by his last statement. “What’s so weird about him taking the pics himself?”
“Because look at them,” my partner continued to point out individual pictures, “If he took the pic himself, then it is from a strange angle. He was taking pictures of her when she was either posing for a picture for somebody else, or if she was off in the distance completely unaware of the fact that she was being photographed. He even had a picture of her and her prom date on his night stand, and I’ll tell you what, either he looked very different back then, or that ain’t him she’s on the date with. Probably just downloaded the picture off of the photographer’s website, they upload all of that stuff so people can buy it later.”
“Damn, that is weird…” I began looking through the pictures again to see them in this new light.
“We also found tons of video tapes of her. He had filmed her all throughout her life ever since she was 15. When I spoke to her, she was devastated. She didn’t even know who this nutbag was.”
I stroked my chin and set down the photo album. “But they went to the same high school, right?”
“Yes, they did, but when shown a picture of him she didn’t have the slightest clue who he was. And looking at the records, every time this girl moved for school or work, he moved to the same city in a building close by. It’s astounding that she never noticed him.” It was obvious from my partner’s voice that he was just as surprised as I was.
“I see…” I replied as I took it all in. “So he’s been stalking her for 15 years and nobody had ever picked up on it? That’s just nuts man.”
“You wanna hear nuts?” He reached over and picked up an old looking brown book, “Just take a look through this.”
He handed the book to me and I began flipping through it. It was this guy’s journal. He had tons of entries dating as far back as ’95. It started out as normal stuff, but eventually he wrote about nothing but her. I flipped toward the back to find his most recent entry.
April 8, 2014
I was kind of having a hard time writing my words down today, mainly because I have so much to say. To put it simply, I love her. I have always loved her. Some may say I’m crazy, that I couldn’t possibly know her, but who are they to tell me? People say that love is when you would do anything for a person, or to be willing to throw it all away for them in a heartbeat if it would make them happy. Some even say that love is when you would die for a person if you had to. Well I would do anything for her, I have given it all up on several occasions to follow her to any point of the world that she needed to be at. I would die for her in an instant. I don’t know if she could ever love me back, but I know that I have to find out. My love is different. If someone loves another person but can no longer have them, then they typically just try to forget, move on, and go on with their lives. But if I can’t have her, then I will never forget. There will never be anybody else in my life like her, and I will live out my life alone. I just want her to know that we have been together for 15 years through all of the joy and the tears, and that I would do anything just to see her smile. I just want to be able to sleep on the same bed as her, in the same home as her, and in the same world as her forever.
“I have so many words, but I can’t express them properly. What am I? How did I get here? How did I get this weapon? The most important question right now is this, ‘Why did I run into this chick?’”
A large portal opened up in the blue sky. A boy fell out of the sky like a shooting star. A girl with spiky, dark-blonde hair pulled back into a short pigtail rode her red bike up a hill. She was unaware of the figure headed for her. Until, he crashed into her.
The girl and the boy both had circles in their eyes as both were passed out. The girl was the first to regain her composure. She got to her knees and knocked the boy to the side. “HEY!” she yelled.
The boy, a young child with sandy-blonde hair looked up at the girl. He could tell that she was not happy. Her aqua-blue eyes were filled with rage and he could see passed her that the red bike she rode on was not in shambles. “What’s your problem?!”
The boy ignored the girl. She kept screaming and how he was able to tolerate it, nobody can really tell. “HEY,” she yelled as she grabbed the boy by the collar of his red, plaid shirt. “I’M TALKING TO YOU!”
The boy just sighed and said, “I am sorry about your bike.”
The girl threw the boy to the pavement, thus making him go back into unconsciousness. She didn’t realize what she had done until she tried yelling at the guy again, he wouldn’t wake up. The girl began to panic and she picked up the boy, tossing him over her shoulder. She ignored the ruins of her destroyed bike and walked off to her house. This guy would pay her back later.
~~~~~~~~The fifteen-year-old girl’s name was Marina Baxter. She was just the typical city girl. Her parents both worked graveyard, so she stayed home a lot, especially with her little brother, Matt. Boy, the eleven-year-old kid always had a way of getting under her skin. Every time, she tried to have friends over, he would scare them out. Heck, don’t even mention having boyfriends over! She was invited over her crush over and they had decided to watch a movie. Matt, that little bugger decided to wear a monster mask with the lights turned off. He caused Marina to spill all of her soda and popcorn over the guy and it didn’t help matters that Matt kept asking the boy really uncomfortable questions, like “Are you going to marry my sister?”, “How many kids are you two going to have?” and “She writes a lot about you in her diary, heck she even named her Barbie dolls after you.” The guy just quietly excused himself and never came back, it didn’t help matters that he transferred to another school.
Marina placed the boy on the couch. She got a closer look at him, he was kinda cute. “What?! What am I thinking?! He still owes me a new bike!” she yelled at herself inwardly.
Marina turned and walked over to the kitchen. She went to the fridge, hoping to find some peanut butter and jelly and fresh wheat bread. Maybe, a cup of water would help too. Besides, this guy had a lot of explaining to do, especially where he was from.
“Hey sis,” a familiar voice yelled from the living room.
Marina splashed milk everywhere and the peanut butter-covered bread fell on her head. She rolled her eyes and cleaned herself up to the best of her ability. Matt was going to pay, but she heard another voice shout, “Hey, keep it down, brat!” and then silence.
Marina rushed into the living room, shocked by what she said. The two boys were wrestling and apparently blondie was winning. “Hey, get off my brother!” she yelled as she struck the nearly empty plastic cup of milk over the boy’s head. He let go of the boy and started rubbing his new bump.
“What was that for?” the boy demanded, but he just received a scary glare that made him want to huddle in a corner, which he did.
“Thanks sis-” Matt was about to say, but he was cut off by his sister’s scary glare as well and he joined the strange boy in the same corner.
Marina just sighed at the pathetic sight of the two males. Why did guys have to be so weird? She just chuckled as she made her way back to the kitchen, oblivious to the fact that Matt and his buddy thought that she was a demon.
~~~~Marina, Matt, and the boy decided to go to the park one day. Matt decided to play on the jungle gym while the boy sat on the swing, Marina decided to sit next to him. “So, uh...what’s your name?” Marina asked as she tried to hide her blushing.
“Uranus,” the boy whispered.
“Oh. Well. That’s a nice name,” Marina replied, unable how to respond.
“Whatever, it’s just a common name where I come from.”
“Where do you come from?” Marina asked with an intrigued look on her face.
“I’m sorry about your bike,” Uranus said as he avoided eye contact with her.
“Hey, don’t change the subject!”
“I just don’t like speaking about it, okay?!”
“Hey,” Marina was now standing. “You shouldn’t go off-topic. It’s rude! Just tell me where you are from and I’ll leave you, because I like-”
Uranus eyed her anxiously. “You like me?” He said in a quiet voice, lower than Marina had ever heard him.
“Yeah, maybe a little.”
“WHAT’S SO FUNNY?!”
“It’s nothing…by the way, where is your brother?” Uranus changed the subject.
It was then that the two looked towards the jungle gym, but Matt was gone. They got up from their swings and started looking for him. Uranus wasn’t sure why Marina was panicking. Maybe, the kid went back home, it was just a couple blocks away. However, Matt wasn’t there. He wasn’t anywhere they thought he would be.
“I’ll help you look for him,” Uranus said out of the blue.
“Thanks,” Marina said quietly, distant in thought about how her little brother could just slip past her. Uranus hugged her and the two kissed.
A year had passed and Uranus still couldn’t find Mattie. They had spent that whole twelve months searching desperately, but never making any progress. Uranus and Marina held hands together as they entered the forest, both of them barefoot. They gathered a handful of rocks and placed them in a circle. The two hugged and gently said their goodbyes to Mattie.
Avatar Korra has saved Republic City and Stopped the Equalist! What will she do next?Korra was patrolling the city with Naga by her side. A part of her still couldn’t believe she had nabbed the guy, who gave her nightmares every night to take her bending away. Having unlocked her air bending through Amon was even crazier. It almost made her want to thank him for taking her bending away to connect to the previous Avatar Aang. Instead she dismissed the thought as she met up with Tenzin and her friends.
“Avatar Korra! Will you be settling down now that Republic City is safe once again?”
“After restoring everyones bending, what will you do about the remaining equalists lurking about the city?”
Korra turned around to see several news reporters making their way across the street to shove a microphone into her face. A frown made its way onto her face as she watched them start to crowd around her, asking questions left and right without giving her a moment to think and she suddenly wish they were equalists instead; then she wouldn’t have to feel guilty for punching them in the face for harassing her.
As Korra placed her two fingers against her lips to call Naga by her side, an arm draped itself around her neck. “Sorry guys, she’s with us and has pro bending practice.” Bolin said, smiling brightly and pumping a fist in the air. “Got to get some practice in so we can defeat the Wolfbats once and for all! Go Fire Ferrets!”
Tenzin stood next to Chief Beifong to address the crowd. “Avatar Korra will resume her training as the Avatar. Now that she has all four elements, she needs to master air bending.”
“There’s also rumors that the water tribes are in turmoil with each other right now.” A reporter said, “Will Avatar Korra be leaving Republic City to settle the feud?”
“Save the questions for the Courthouse.” Chief Beifong stated, throwing an arm out to call her fellow commanding officers to handle the reporters for them.
“How’s it feel to have Amon locked away?” Mako asked, when they were out of earshot of news reporters.
“Do we have to talk about Amon right now?” Korra retorted, feeling uneasy after being stalked by news reporters and wanted to think about something else.
“Okay then… Still up for a date with me?” Mako said with a smile, “I know a really good place to eat out and it’d just be the two of us.”
“I would love to, Mako.” Korra said, then remembered how much it hurt to watch Mako kiss Asami. “Its just that, I think you should talk to Asami first.”
Mako placed his hands on her shoulders, making Tenzin, Bolin and Chief Beifong stop in their tracks. “Korra, I know what I said before about liking both you and Asami, that I didn’t know what to do about it. But now I do, and its you that I want to go out with. Asami will understand and we can still be team avatar.”
Korra felt her face flush as she stared up at Mako’s pleading face, feeling the pressure as everyone held their breath as she took her time to answer. “I-I…” Korra began, feeling the need to escape and was looking for a way out, “I need to call Naga. She hasn’t had a bath in so long, since we left the South.”
“Korra-” Mako said, reaching out to stop her from leaving until a hand placed itself on his shoulder, making him look up at Tenzin.
“Let her go. Korra has gone under a tremendous amount of obstacles and stress these past few days.,” Tenzin said, watching Korra climb up on Naga without a backwards glance and gallop off. “Just give her some time, and she needs to focus on her duties as the avatar.”
Bolin looked at Pabu. “I don’t think she plans on giving Naga a bath.” Mako glared at his brother then headed into their favorite restaurant to order their dumplings with Bolin following closely behind.
Chief Beifong and Tenzin stood outside as they watched the brothers go inside to get their meals. Tenzin fidgeted with his tunic and beard as he thought over how quiet Republic City has been lately. “Have the equalists been plotting to free Amon yet?”
“No. In fact, we haven’t seen a single Equalist after putting Amon away,” Chief Beifong said, looking at the statue of her mother, “We’ve been trying to interrogate him and haven’t gotten anywhere. He hasn’t said a word since his imprisonment.”
“You don’t suppose Korra is worried about Amon escaping?” Tenzin asked, then his eyes widen, “Or that Amon isn’t Amon?”
“It did feel rather too easy to put Amon away.” Chief Beifong said slowly, “After having my bending restored, I didn’t think twice about listening to his speeches on equalizing the city. Narrowly escaping his blood bending a second time.”
“Then who do you have inside of the jail house?” Mako said, having caught the end of their conversation and handed the dumplings over to Bolin. “That can’t be possible. We all saw Amon get put away.”
“No way! Amon isn’t Amon?” Bolin exclaimed, “Does this mean Amon is still out there? Lurking beneath the under bell of Republic City? Do you think Korra knows?”
“T-This is all hypothetical. Korra has most likely returned to Air Temple Island right now to work on her meditating and air bending.” Tenzin coughed, sharing a concerned look with Cheif Beifong, “We’d know if Amon was still at large.”
“I’m going to check up on Korra.” Mako said, taking off into a light jog to head over to the ferry.
“Should we go to the Jail House?” Cheif Beifong asked, “It wouldn’t hurt to put our doubts to rest and carry on about our evening.”
Tunnel“Naga, where are you taking me girl?” Korra scolded, after chasing after her polar dog from the park and followed her into an old tunnel that was once used by the equalists. As Korra wandered deeper into the tunnel, she could hear Naga growling at something before going silent. “Naga?” The tunnel itself was dark, the rails for the train carts were removed by the task force to keep equalists from rising up to take Amon’s place as the new leader of the equalists, and swept the place for any suspect’s whom opposed bending, and made sure no benders were locked away in the cells located underneath the city.
“Shouldn’t you have better control of your pets?”
“Who’s there?” Korra demanded, throwing her hands up into position, and moved her body into a bending stance. “I won’t hurt you, if you come on out.” When no reply came, Korra lit her fist on fire. “Don’t make me come in there and drag you out by force.” Again, no answe camer, making Korra let down her guard. “I must of been imagining things. C’mon Naga, lets go home.” The polar dog returned to her side, giving a backwards glance towards something Korra couldn’t see before following her masters side. Korra walked into the lighter half of the tunnel, stopping near the edge and began petting Naga with an absent hand. “Naga, what am I going to do about Mako and Republic City? I really, really like Mako, but he’s got Asami and it feels like he’s taking turns to please us both and I don’t know how I feel about him anymore,” Naga licked Korra’s cheek, making her laugh, “I don’t suppose you know anyone who could date me, do you, Naga?”
“Having a lovers spat, Avatar Korra?”
Korra felt herself freeze in place then slowly turn around to see an equalist approaching her. This equalist in particular wasn’t like the others and had a similar mask to the one Amon had been using before, but there was no way it could be the same man she put away three days ago. Only the voice and body build of this particular equalist set her nerves afire, making her sweat as he approached her with a gait that reminded her too much of Amon. “Cat got your tongue, Avatar Korra?”
“Who are you? What do you want?” Korra said, watching the equalist circle around her as she kept him from hitting her in her blindspots.
“For everyone to be equalized and treated fairly, instead of being oppressed by benders.” The man replied, eyes glowing behind the mask, “Bringing a new era to Republic City.”
Korra stomped her foot on the ground and pushed her arms up, making chunks of rock fly out of the ground and hurled them at the equalist. Each rock sorely missed their target as the equalist evaded and ducked beneath each rock, and and invaded her personal space; tapping her on the chin. “You’re losing your touch, Avatar Korra, or is this the best you can do?” Korra growled in frustration and opened her mouth to breath fire at the man, when her legs were swept out from under her from a blunt force of a foot.
Falling onto her side was quite painful, that Korra rolled onto her stomach and got on her hands and knees, then started to stand only to see the equalist leering down at her and went to place his thumb on her forehead. Or thats what she thought, when the hand fell away before it could touch her.
“A vulnerable looking Avatar… Quite an arousing sight to see.” The equalist stated, “You should look like that more often.”
Korra flushed in embarrassment before growing angry at the thought of looking weak before her enemy. “I am the avatar, savior of republic city, and I won’t be taken down by the like’s of you!” With her arms thrown out in front of her, a whoosh of air knocked the equalist back into wall, making him crash into a few crates beneath his feet. “I won’t be underestimated and I hope you enjoy prison! In fact you can be cellmates with Amon!”
The equalist let out a bark of laughter at her statement, watching Korra shiver at the sound of his voice before making herself look fierce again. “Don’t tell me, young avatar, that you don’t recognize me?”
“And if I don’t?” Korra said, thinking this was all a ruse to get her to stop bending long enough to hit her chi points. “That’s not going to work. I put your precious leader in prison before he could cause any more damage, and obviously I can still bend.” Only it was working. Korra felt the doubt worming its way into her heart as she stared longer at the man with the black mask shaped like Amon’s with different color stripes and a blood red dot between its eyes.
“What if I told you, the avatar isn’t as special as you think it is?” The equalist said, charging at her and hitting her forearm, paralyzing her chi blocks before she could make a roundhouse kick to retaliate and backed off again.
“What are you talking about?” Korra questioned, clutching her arm and upper kicking the air, making flames shoot out from the heels of her feet and scorch the tunnel with burnt marks as it missed its target again.
“Perhaps the spirits were kind enough to grant Amon the grace and powers an Avatar does?”
“That’s not possible!” Korra exclaimed before feeling herself be pushed back against the wall by an unseen force, feeling her body move against her will. “You can blood bend?!”
“Leave her alone!” A voice called out.
Korra and the equalist looked to their right, watching Mako standing at the entrance of the tunnel and punch the air repeatedly, sending multiple bursts of fire from his fists. The equalist reluctantly moved out of the way in time and engaged Mako with a few kicks and punches of his own. Mako blasted a wall of fire from his hands, only to be caught off guard when the equalist leapt through it and punched him in the jaw, making him stagger back a few feet. As he regained his feet, he dodged roll out of the way as the equalist made a move to hit his chi blocks in his arms, legs and back as he pushed up and shot a fist into the equalist stomach.
A smirk worked its way onto Mako’s mouth as he rushed to Korra’s side and took hold of her arm. “Are you okay, Korra?” Mako asked, locking his eyes with hers before feeling his body suddenly be yanked away and thrown onto the ground. “Why you- Arghh, what’s happening? Why is my body not moving?”
“You’ll never be good enough for Avatar Korra.”
Korra gulped as the equalist approached her. She could no longer deny who he was, when this equalist could single handedly take down to benders without breaking a sweat and bloodbend her friend from coming to her rescue. “Amon,” Korra whispered, feeling herself shiver, and heat pool into her stomach and make its way across her body. There was no helping it, she was starting to like Amon more then she cared to admit; countless times he has made her feel both afraid and full of wonder, that she wondered if they could of been friends or even joined together to make Republic City better. And yet, he refused to like bending and believed all benders were abusing their powers. Not that he wasn't wrong.
A part of her looked over to Mako. Could he see them? Was he still awake and trying to fight against the bending keeping him down? Was what Amon said, right? Could Amon be better then- No, Korra refused to believe that and mentally slapped herself, telling herself Amon was her nightmares and terrorized her, her family and friends since she got here. Only problem was, she was starting to like all of the attention he gave her. Except there was still too much she didn't know about him, and the blood bending powers he has.
Amon smiled beneath his mask, trapping Korra against the wall as she fought against the bloodbending making her body stay still and placed both hands against either side of her head. “I’ll never be imprisoned, young avatar, not when this city still needs someone to give a voice to the non-benders who go unheard of everyday.”
“I’m trying to fix that!” Korra retorted, when she felt a finger push against her lips to silence her.
“You’re not trying hard enough, Korra,” Amon whispered, “and you call yourself the avatar, the bridge between the spirit world and ours, when you can’t even unite benders and non-benders together.”
"Are you sure you're talking about Republic City and not something else entirely?" Korra said sarcastically, rolling her eyes and looking away from him in defiance.
Amon chuckled at her witty banter and lifted his mask up long enough to press his lips against hers and kiss her on the mouth. A cry of protest made its way out of her mouth before she fell into the kiss and jolted in shock of what she was doing. “You’ll seek me out again, when Republic City falls apart on your watch.”
Then he was gone.
Korra stared off into the distance then hurried over to Mako’s side, only to see he was asleep after being blood bended against his will. Naga bounded over to her and gave her a hearty lick. “Great, we’re both under his spell.” Korra whispered, petting Naga on the head before pushing Mako up onto her and climbing onto her back. “Lets go, Naga.”“We mustn’t alarm Korra with the news, Lin.” Tenzin said, pacing back and forth.
Outside the Jail House
“She has to know. The avatar has a duty to her people,” Chief Beifong said, crossing her arms and frowning, “I can’t believe he escaped under our watch, and avoided us all of this time.”
“What will happen to Republic City?” Bolin asked, feeling concerned for Korra.
“We’ll have to keep quiet for now, until we can find Amon and put him away for good.” Chief Beifong stated.
Little did they know their own Avatar, has already learned the truth and plans on doing nothing about Amon. Korra plans on proving Amon wrong and someday, convincing him to work along side her or make him leave Republic City forever, because she was starting to fall in love with him.