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|As Tough As You Are|
You love her. She loves you. She raised you.
You are her captain. She is your matriarch.
You are standing against her.
You know she can help. And yet she will not.
You know you can help. And yet she tells you not to.
You decide against her. Something you have never done before. But it needs to be done.
You take what you need. You take her son, her top engineer, her army, her provisions and her weapons.
You know that she will not forgive you. But that does not matter. Not anymore. It is a lie you tell yourself.
You only want to help your country. When you will be done, she will ask for your forgiveness.
You set off early in the morning. She tries to stop you. She tries to make you choose between her, and the world.
You have already made up your mind. You chose the world.
You arrive at the capital. She was right. You march on the city with an army, and you are greeted with war.
You fight your battles. You suffer your losses. But you succeed.
You celebrate this victory.
You start to notice her son. You see that he is changing. He is not an obedient little boy anymore.
You see that he has become a man. You see him. He sees you. A man you fall for.
You dance, you kiss, you drink, you make love.
You wake up to a message. It says to prepare for a formal visit.
You get ready, but it catches you off guard. Now the world leaders rally behind you instead of behind her.
You see the Water Tribes' Chiefs, the Head of the Air Nation, the President of the Republic, the Fire Lord.
You miss the one you want to see.
You do not see her. She was the one you wanted to see there.
You know she is as tough as you are.
You stand amongst the rubble of the walls. Your first lieutenant asks for your orders.
You tell him to prepare for departure.
You move from place to place. You see how your elite soldiers make short work of poorly organized bandits.
You see your army grow. You see your army improve. Her top engineer is as brilliant as she said he was.
You are met with resistance. Not just from bandits. The places you freed start to act up.
You are insulted by them. After what you did for them, the citizens start to question you.
You arrest the dissenters. You turn them into a cautionary tale. You force them to build your army.
You continue your crusade. The more lands you conquer, the easier it becomes.
You are joined by one of the friends of the Avatar. A talented bender, and he is dating her daughter.
You are worried this will put a rift between either mother and daughter, or between lava- and airbender.
You do not speak out against them. It is their choice, and both want to help your nation.
You notice that the bandits feel the pressure. Law and order gain the upper hand once more.
You lose men too. But your prisoners number greater than your losses.
You force them to work for you. They are fighters. You can use those at every turn. They are expendable. You are not.
You continue your relationship with her son. He has proven himself to be a valuable asset.
You agree to marry him without a second's hesitation. You make each other happy, for the rest of your lives.
You hear about the new crown prince. He is a witless oaf, a good-for-nothing. He will undo all your hard work.
You decide to remove him from power as soon as the opportunity arises.
You are invited to the coronation. This is the first time in three years you see her.
You do not speak to her. Her son does. You see that she flags him down. She is as tough as you are.
You are approached by the prince. His advances are as pathetic as he is.
You feel pleased with yourself as you put him in place: square beneath you.
You attend the coronation. And you cannot help but smile as you hear the disinterest in the crowd.
You are asked to step forward. He bestows you a medal. It is a symbol of the archaic royals who ruined you nation.
You address the crowd. Your nation is back on track, thanks to you. You refuse to step down.
You will reform it. You will rule it. You warn everyone else not to interfere.
You crush the medal, as you crushed your opposition.
You announce the birth of the Earth Empire.
You are approached by her. She is sent by the world leaders, urging you to step down.
You refuse. Rightfully so. It was your hard work, and now she is here to try and undo it.
You tell her off. She is not pleased that you are the one to put her in her place.
You know she is as tough as you are.
You warn her what is coming for her home. You have renounced it as your own home.
You know that one mistake here will cost you all of your work. It would send your nation back into chaos.
You are counting on the Avatar's friend. He is not too bright, but she still trusts him.
You walk into her office, and she is there with her entire family.
You laugh away her attempt at winning her son back. You know he would not give in.
You still had hope the negotiations would work. But realistically, you knew they would be pointless.
You knew she will not give up her city.
You are pleasantly surprised by a visit of the Avatar. She might be able to talk her down off the mountain.
You do feel saddened as her top engineer and the Avatar's friend desert your army. They were useful.
You do not dwell on it. You make him continue his work, supervised by her son. This takes precedence.
You are not surprised that the Avatar cannot talk her around. You know she is as tough as you are.
You expected her to try and take you in your sleep. You capture her, and you make her watch as her city falls.
You put her in a box no larger than a coffin. You do it to humiliate her.
You fight the Avatar, and you are surprised how easy it is to defeat her. She was the last hurdle.
You have completed your empire.
You know you cannot stop here. You have the greatest military force in history.
You have a secret weapon.
You planned for an attack on it. But it comes from her side. Her mother, her sister and her daughter.
You see the friend of the Avatar. They manage to free her and her family.
You watch as your army takes them on. Her family puts up an admirable fight, but your soldiers are too much.
You are caught off guard by her. She is resourceful in combat, but lacks the youth to defeat you.
You cannot stop them from leaving though. Her mother is powerful enough to knock down a battalion.
You know that it does not matter.
You march on the Republic. You lead the charge yourself in the weapon her son designed.
You subdue them without even breaking a sweat. The President surrenders, but there is no sign of the Avatar.
You know she is planning something. The Avatar does not give up so easily.
You did not expect her to work with the Avatar, let alone take her own son as a prisoner.
You hear him beg to give it up, or else they will keep him from you forever.
You weigh your options. You have to choose between him, and the world. But you already made up your mind.
You chose the world a long time ago.
You feel remorse. You feel regret. You even feel sadness. But you still pull the trigger.
You try to kill them all. She herself. Her son. Her daughter. Her twins. The Avatar.
You think you succeeded. But an attack on the weapon proves you wrong.
You see the airbenders, you see the Avatar, you feel the lavabender, but they can't do anything.
You smile as you know the weapon is too powerful.
You watch them retreat, as you try to wipe them out for good. You cannot see if you succeeded.
You don't assume anything anymore.
You know they will be back. Even if you hit some of them, the weapon is a big target.
You watch the second attack unfold. She and her sister catch you off guard. They topple a building on you.
You just smile as you stand up again. The weapon is as tough as you are.
You are still surprised by what they have concocted. Flying suits.
You doubt they will pose a threat. They are mosquitoes compared to the weapon. Still, better safe than sorry.
You try squash them, until the Avatar freezes you in place. You did not count on her sheer power.
You yell at your men, but there is nothing they can do.
You see one of the flying suits land. You know it tries to prick a hole.
You break the ice and crush the suit, but it's too late. A hole has been made, and the Avatar is in.
You know she is too. She is too clever not too.
You feel someone breaking the cannon. As the weapon is useless, you rip it off.
You come face to face with the Avatar. She is in form this time around, she gives a run for your money.
You are evenly matched. You blast each other back, as the weapon blows up beneath you.
You are carried out, but the Avatar lets down her guard. You knock her down, and run into the Spirit Wilds.
You see an unexpected bonus. The cannon hangs in the vines.
You launch yourself up to the control panel, and see that it is still operational.
You taunt the Avatar. She emerges from the Wilds, staring down the rifled barrel.
You try shoot her again, but you cannot shut the cannon down.
You feel your foothold slip away, and you fall off when the cannon hits something hard.
You look up in horror, as you see the beam come straight for you.
You think you are done for. Used as target practice by Irony itself.
You do not expect the Avatar to jump into the breach for you.
You do not expect such compassion.
You realize you do not deserve such compassion.
You talk with the Avatar. She explains that she understands you.
You think that to be impossible. But she makes it very clear that she does. She explains what she went through.
You know she is right. What you did was wrong on every level. There are no excuses to be made.
You step out of the newly created Spirit Portal, supported by the Avatar, as you cannot walk on your own.
You see her.
You order your troops to stand down, and you surrender to her.
You apologize as you finally realize it.
She is tougher than you are.
|Korra's Recovery • The Road to Nowhere Special • Soldier's Eyes - Part 1 • Inked • Smokin' • For Those About To Rock • Soldier's Eyes - Part 2 • Bath Time • Gym Buddies • The New TA • Moving Out, Moving On • Earning Her Spurs • Swimming in the Rain • A Drink For Free • Insider • How I Got to Memphis • What Happens In Vegas... • Vendetta • The Snow Storm • Stays in Vegas... • Saturday • Public Transport • The Big Day • The Fighter • Lights, Camera, Action • What Happens In College... • Small-Block V8 • ... Or Maybe Not • Spur of the Moment • The Suit Makes the Woman|
|Other works (mostly Kainora)|
|Tickets • As Tough As You Are • The Compound • Was It Worth It? • Coffee to Go • Best Hangover Ever • Best Hangover Ever 2 • Winter Olympics 2018|
|The Divided Republic • Team Player • All Are Equal • The Callgirl • Who We Are • She's a Pirate • Where Do We Start? • Some Day They'll Go Down Together|
For the collective works of the author, go here.