A/N: Last chapter, woot woot.
Tahno stayed on the pier.
He wasn't stupid; he knew that Republic City was in the midst of a war. But what were the equalists going to do to him? He had nothing to lose.
And then, of all people, the Avatar saved the day. Amon and Tarlokk were missing, all the equalists had gone into hiding, and Republic City burst into celebration.
Tahno didn't care for their happiness. Eventually, someone would realize that, even though the big bad monster was gone, it didn't mean that they were safe. The idea was embedded deep in too many brains. Whispers of 'revolution' and 'equality for all' can't be erased from their heads. So Tahno stayed far away, on his little spot on the pier, where no one could bother him.
And yet, she visited him again.
He heard her distinct footsteps nearing him, but didn't bother to look up. "You came back," he said.
If she was surprised that he recognized her, she didn't say. "How's it going, Tahno?"
He shrugged. "Heard you stopped Amon, but you lost your bending." Word gets around, even to him. He'd heard from a homeless man that Amon had taken her bending, but she unlocked airbending. Then she beat up Amon and disappeared to the South Pole.
She grinned toothily at his words. "Not quite."
He narrowed his eyes and scrutinized her. She sounded way too cheery to have lost something so close to her. Her grin only widened, and she merely put out her hand, palm first. Immediately, a small flame sprung to life.
He laughed dryly. "Should've known." He wasn't jealous of her, he told himself. He should be happy for the Avatar, who always wins, because she's just so important. "Congratulations," he tacked on, not even trying to keep the bitter tone out of his voice.
She stood then, and Tahno figured she was going to leave and probably never come back. She had places to go, people to see. She was going to walk away, let him sulk on his own for the rest of his life. (And, as much as he tried to convince himself it wasn't true, that her leaving would be for the best, he knew that he didn't want her to go.)
But instead, she put her hands on her hips and smiled down at him with all of the cockiness that he'd ever seen in her while probending.
"Here." She held out her hand. "Face me."
Tahno twisted his head to look at her. "What are you-?"
She interrupted him by gently placing one hand on his heard and the other on his forehead. He was confused; her motions just weren't registering in her brain. She looked terrifyingly similar to Amon, at that moment.
"Is this some kind of sick-?"
Her eyes flew open, glowing bright blue, and Tahno watched in fascination. She took a deep breath in, then out, and Tahno found himself following her. All at once, the glow disappeared and she removed her hands.
"Bend." Her words were soft, but he heard her.
Tahno stood to face her. "I can't," he stated simply.
"You can!" She sounded so genuine, and his heart ached. He wanted to believe her. He wanted to listen to her every word and lose himself in every fairytale she wove.
Swiftly, she bent a whip of water at his face. What happened next was instinctual. He didn't even pause, didn't hesitate, didn't think. He reached up, and bent the water to a standstill.
For the first time in so long, Tahno laughed in awe. He gazed at the water, and then turned to the girl in front of him. She was grinning from ear to ear, her blue eyes sparkling.
And what Tahno did next was even more impulsive than before.
He leaned over, never leaving her gaze, and kissed her softly. Her lips tasted like the salty sea, and Tahno pulled away, long enough to smile at her once more. "Thank you, Korra."
The ending makes no sense. I know. The title and theme aren't even loosely connected to it. But I don't want to leave this unfinished, so read my half-ass ending and don't even bother reviewing it. Goodbye!