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31 October 2006 @ 07:55 am
HAPPY HALLOWEEN! challenge fic  
Title: True
Author: ayellowumbrella
Fandom, Pairing: Avatar: The Last Airbender, Mai/Zuko unrequited
Rating: MATURE--R
Warnings: violence, death
Summary: Questions curve, change and twist in your grasp. Blades are clean and straight. Answer. True. 

words I chose from:
bat
glow
mist/fog
flight
crack*
stumble*
candy corn
silence*
raven
skull*
BOOM!

The first cut was so easy. Thin blade kissing thin skin. Blood licked out like a tongue to caress the steel.
 
“Zuko,” Mai whispered, blade kissing his left cheek, his right temple. 
 
Five years had not been long enough; ten years, a hundred years would not be enough. She could not not love him. But love had mixed with frustration and become a burning star of ice inside her, rolling through her, scraping against her spine, scratching at the inside of her skull. Some things cannot be borne. 
 
She had not expected to find Zuko alone. She had not expected him to stumble. So changed, her Zuko? He was broken; shattered and reassembled hastily, the cracks showing. His arm, where her hand was placed, was all tangles. Disjointed. 
 
“Zuko?” 
 
And Mai took the strangled noise as invitation, and in the falling down she hoped to fall right in. Lava flows, burning bushes. Secret shadows cast in the corners by flickering light. 
 
He fought her. And she triumphed, easily, but she was choking on ice. It was pressing against her eyes and crusting on her lips. Why hadn’t he let her in? Why? Always why. 
 
Questions curve, change and twist in your grasp. Blades are clean and straight. Answer. True. 
 
So, pinning him down with her kneecaps angry in his elbows, she made cut one. Below the thick scar. Then the right temple, crossing the dip of it with unrelenting angularity. 
 
A notch against his clavicle, down to the bone.  He screamed. Ice grated in Mai’s ears. She made parallel lines of blood burst up over the irrational lace of scarred skin below his eye. Each was a proclamation. Each one deeper than the last. Then two hands, two blades (like two lips) against Zuko’s chest to make a pair of lines. And Zuko’s scream was two tones: pain and terror. 
 
Blades hold hands as hands cannot: pierce the muscle, snap the tendon, grate against the bone and unite them with the ground. Together forever. The cuts she made on his hips were precise, clean. Investigative. What is boy? Man? Desire? Woman? What are ten million flowers, a hundred heartbeats worth of blood, four screams. 
 
Zuko fell silent. Mai didn’t hear the screaming stop, or hear the forest settle heavily back in; only the ice snapping, geometric crystals growing across her chest. It was getting hard to breathe. 
 
The shivering pulse in Zuko’s neck called desperately for her metal kiss; it longed to give up its redness to her, Mai could tell. And it did explode forth under her touch, the pulse shuddering out against her fingers, hot, crawling up her skin, setting the ice to crackling. Stretching, splintering; brightness shooting hard fingers through it. 
 
Mai rubbed the blood against her cheeks, touched its bitterness to her mouth, pressed her fingers into the pools of it and sliding her palms against it. Fingers to skin. Fingers are not as straight as knives. Her left forefinger jerks left at the top, rebellious since it was broken at age twelve. And the knuckles distort the line. She has popped the joint of her right pinky too many times, and it is hulking; a twisting of connection. 
 
Mai presses her head to Zuko’s shoulder. Fingers are no good. Nor hands, nor knees or bones. Only the straightness of a blade is true. Not love, or shatterings. Even fire has ragged, epehmeral edges. Zuko smells like the metal of blades now, and his arms are held out to her now. Now she is sinking into his chest, cut and spliced into him. Together. Mai had always loved Zuko. Always would.
 
 
Current Mood: MWUHAHAHA
 
 
 
apapercraneapapercrane on November 1st, 2006 12:05 am (UTC)
I guess I just don't understand how you could possibly write something so beautifully poetic, and have it be scary as hell at the same time.

The one thing I wish could be further explained --if we were ever to edit these *grimace* -- would be the lava flow bit. It was really cool -- I like the heat and coolness compaired as such, but I guess I didn't fully understand...

But, alas as I expected, you beat me at creepyness. The trophy goes to you!
ayellowumbrella: Sparklypooayellowumbrella on November 1st, 2006 06:50 pm (UTC)
Ew, editing. Yeah, the lava bit...was a tangent I got started on before I realized I had no idea what I was talking about/I had less than an hour to write.

You made a valient effort at creepiness, though! I was impressed! BUT I'M THE FUCKIN' QUEEN OF DARKNESS AND YOU CAN'T BEAT ME! Kidding. This was fun! We should definately do one for Christmas (and maybe Thanksgiving, if we're feeling ambitious...?).