gaisce: (Kicking you while down)
Flourishing Verdantly ([personal profile] gaisce) wrote2010-07-11 10:26 pm

[Avatar] Let Go in Small Doses

Title: Let Go in Small Doses
Series: Avatar: the Last Airbender
Spoilers/warnings: Ty Lee/Azula, vague spoilers for the finale
Wordcount: 505
Summary: Written to Regina Spektor's "Ode to Divorce" for the Ladyfest Appreciation Meme. 'You're eating something minty. And you're making that face that I like. And you're going in, in for the kill, kill. For the killer kiss...'

The first kiss was mostly an accident. Mostly because nothing Azula did was without some calculation, but she still looked surprised when Ty Lee's response to her mouth half full of fruit tart and half words taunting her was lips against the young princess's. She was only trying to reclaim what she thought was rightfully hers. Her tongue capturing caramelized sugar, the mint leaf, and what might have been Azula's breath if the younger girl didn't start coughing at a mislaid crumb.

They were seven, and it was the sweetest one.

The next one happened a long time after but just before Ty Lee ran away from home. This one Azula initiated as a slow spreading smile, with the red lipstick she had started wearing now that her mother was not there to tell her no. It came at the end of a secret, with words whispered so quietly that Ty Lee had not actually heard her, but when the other girl pulled away there was a red smudge at the corner of her mouth and a look of triumph in Azula's eyes. An expression Ty Lee liked and did not like in equal measure, depending on who was on the receiving end.

In the washroom, Ty Lee tried to wipe the mark off with her tongue, tasting something bitter and not entirely real.

Azula came back years later, tracking dust and old memories in Ty Lee's circus home. She asked for her help and sounded so sincere that, for a second, Ty Lee believed her when she said that she would not take her away from something that brought her happiness. Forgetting that Azula had her own views of happiness, which she brought to Ty Lee with black pressed flowers to match the sweetly dying smile on her face.

Of course, this disappointment did not stop Ty Lee from reconciling with her once they were miles away from both their homes. Far away from even the idea of home. It was hard to think of a land as "yours" when you are forcibly taking it from someone else. Azula managed the claim with great conviction; Ty Lee, instead, held tighter to what little she felt was freely given to her.

The restlessness is how the third, fourth, fifth and all the remaining kisses started. Because somewhere Azula acquired a taste for being loved, and Ty Lee sated her appetite for being wanted. And in the following battles, the conquests and the failures, they could rely on each other for that. At least, until the time where they could not.

So now Ty Lee sometimes runs her tongue against her teeth and the roof of her mouth, remembering how Azula used to fill that space. How her words filled up her head. And how it is not a bitter or sweet feeling that she is alone now, but something she is breaking apart inside her so one day she can manage to let go of the jagged pieces. And hold on to the rest.

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