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01 March 2008 @ 03:09 pm
Quiet Heroes  
Title: Quiet Heroes
Pairing: Zuko x Ty Lee
Fandom: Avatar the Last Airbender
Genre: General, Angst
Rating: PG
Word Count: 1,215

Quiet Heroes

1. Ring

Around her finger there was a ring, from him (and his mother) and that said all there was to be said.

2. Hero

Once, Ty Lee told him this, “The quiet heroes are the ones left behind on the battlefield, the ones forgotten, the ones you’ll never forget.”

3. Memory

Locked away in a jeweled casket are the world’s memories, those, he tossed aside and somehow, can’t remember her face.

4. Box

Boxed in, incarceration, just the two of them against the world—too bad it didn’t work.

5. Run

(Run, run fast as you can) Azula’s coming, but so is Ty Lee.

6. Hurricane

A hurricane took him in, made him feel safe, told him the world would be fine, and the hurricane lied, left him to die.

7. Wings

Someday, she’s gonna fly, spread out feathers, white and pale, blinding in the sun, and she’ll take him too, just for fun.

8. Cold

It was cold tonight, bitter and biting, with the winds howling through the holes in their jackets.

9. Red

Red ink makes blood, her eyes were wide awake and all she saw was him (and two paper-thin swords).

10. Drink

“Have a drink,” he coaxed, and No-Thank-You, she replied.

11. Midnight

Across from the lake, there was a house, small and proud it gleamed with bright and moon, and there, Ty Lee writes him a final letter.

12. Temptation

Temptation equaled women, and him and women added up was him fading in and out.

13. View

The view from over the head, past the trellis and the lanai, was a baby kingfisher being speared—signified the finale, augured it’s all over now.

14. Music

Music played and the children sang, and him and her lived only in the notes.

15. Silk

The first time they slept together, Ty Lee couldn’t stop crying and soon, the silks were coated with tears and pain.

16. Cover

Duck and cover: they can’t (won’t) be together.

17. Promise

Zuko made a promise, a petty one, but still a promise that he would return and marry her; he never did.

18. Dream

Dreams were like imaginations, but she could continue to dream when all her imagination ran dry, like a sirocco blowing over the desert, covering everything in dust and sand.

19. Candle

The candle flickered then went out, quelled, suppressed, and she started to shake—bad.

20. Talent

Ty Lee had a unique talent: She could scale up the walls and drive him insane.

21. Silence

The silence deafened (how absurd) and now, there were no more warriors, no other reason to fight, and they were happy at long last.

22. Journey

The journey stopped here, with a girl and a boy and smiles that cracked.

23. Fire

Fire he knew, her he knew not.

24. Strength

Out of infinite wisdom and hurt, there came infinite strength, but she simply didn’t know how to call it out.

25. Mask

The Blue Spirit had a mask, and so did she (hers was the one she showed to him day and day).

26. Ice

Ice was frangible, chip at it and it will fragment, into a thousand tiny shards dancing; ice was just like them.

27. Fall

“Call me when you fall, ring me up as you crash, and I’ll catch you before you drown if I am so inclined (perhaps).”

28. Forgotten

When they were young, she startled him with her ready-to-give smiles and never-dying hope, and now when they’re older and have seen too much, he still remembered her laughs.

29. Dance

Ty Lee was like a butterfly, twirled ‘round and ‘round, fast and made him sickly pale.

30. Body

He touched her shoulders, comforted her, and tried to say: Don’t worry, at least we’re alive.

32. Sacred

The rains came down over the cities, and Zuko buried himself and his worries inside (Ty Lee wasn’t even an after-thought).

32. Farewells

Goodbye, good night, when a thousand years have been slain, diced and sliced and smothered in hate, they can be friends again.

33. World

End the end, so the world could be birthed anew (and all the acrimony can be washed away, she said).

34. Formal

Say the pledge (to the nation), say the vows (to each other), everything was always so formal, extravagant and insincere.

35. Fever

She was hot and burning, felt his kisses on her face and the revulsion surging through.

36. Laugh

Ty Lee laughs pretty and cheery, bright and light, she’s got the eternal smile—the one that doesn’t dissipate in despair and fear, in defeat.

37. Lies

“Tell me a lie, tell me that I was the first.”

38. Forever

There was no such thing as forever love, only the forever art of not-loving.

39. Overwhelmed

Life comes fast and unexpected, uncontrolled, she barely endures it, but friendships last and that’s what matters.

40. Whisper

In his eyes, she is coy and furtive, and in his ears, she whispers that she loves him, as a brother and nothing more.

41. Wait

A girl’s life is measured in Waits: wait for marriage, for birth, for her to get old and wise and for him to finally say that she is cherished.

42. Talk

“Shut up,” Ty Lee says, “There’s no need for an explanation,” because there’s no need to continue, not when they’re enemies.

43. Search

Some days, Ty Lee could forget who she was, what she was, and everything that made her so rightly wrong.

44. Hope

Hope doesn’t persist, not like a disease, not when she’s on one side of and him on the other, and there’s a river of betrayal and wounds separating them.

45. Eclipse

The Fire Lord knew of the eclipse, and Zuko (being the un-goodly son and prince) left that day and left her and Mai behind.

46. Gravity

Gravity drags her down, tugs at her limbs and rejoices as she falls to her knees, and there’s no one to pull her up from the other end.

47. Highway

Life is a highway; life’s path winds this way and that, Ty Lee hisses out caution, afraid he’ll miss the exit and miss her too.

48. Unknown

Zuko could no longer sleep, not after he became a feeble, shriveled man, all that remained a mystery was the crux of future.

49. Lock

Ty Lee locks up her heart tight and guarded, never lets anyone in, never lets him see who she really is (and she is glad, that was safe).


Take a breath, draw it out, slow and low, she snakes her arms around his, and kisses him chaste (rough) on the cheek.