❯ Zuko Was No Coward – Desperate Times ( Chapter 6 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Zuko couldn’t believe his luck. They’d been caught snooping around the city after dark. Their feet pounded the stone streets and he could hear panting loud in his ears. He’d never been caught before. It was all because of�He shook the thought from his head. He was good now, he reminded himself. Good people don’t blame each other. He rounded a corner and slipped on loose dirt, crashing into the side of a nearby building. Behind them, Fire Nation soldiers were closing in, their commands coming clearer and sharper. A hand closed over his wrist, pulling him sharply. Katara. Wide, blue eyes met his and he could see her fear now bordering on panic. Her breath was coming in sharp pants and she held a hand to her side, apparently trying to ease a stitch. For a master waterbender, Zuko was surprised she wasn’t in better shape.

�Let’s go! We’re going to get caught!�

He jerked his hand away, snapping, �We’re not going to get caught!�

Once more they were winding through the streets, Katara panting behind him. Surely they were almost out of this Agni-forsaken city. �I knew I shouldn’t have trusted you!�

�I’m not the one who antagonized an entire battalion of soldiers! This wouldn’t have happened if I was by myself like I had planned.�

�You’ll just betray us again!�

He whirled on her, grunting when she crashed into his chest. �In case you haven’t noticed, Katara, I’m not exactly on friendly terms with the Fire Nation.�

She hastily backed away, putting more space between them. �That didn’t stop you before.�

He flinched. All right. That was true. He deserved that one. �Since I joined you there is no going back. I am a traitor and next to Aang, I have the most recognizable face in the Fire Nation. I have no doubt there are orders out to kill me on sight.�

A strange expression crossed her face but he had no time to decipher it. A shout at the end of the street alerted them that they’d been spotted. Zuko grabbed her arm, dragging her around several corners and into an alley before they hit�

�A dead end! What are we going to do?�

Broken crates and empty barrels lined the walls and trash was piled high and spilling across the narrow alley. Katara spun, looking back the direction they came, but already the light from the Fire Nation soldiers was approaching the alley. Zuko eyed the walls speculatively as Katara cursed. �I’m out of water!�

�Shut up, let me think.�

On the street, the sound of heavy footsteps and the clank of armor was drawing nearer. If they didn’t do something soon, they’d be trapped. He didn’t think he could pull them both up the wall. Without warning, she grabbed him roughly by the front of his shirt, jerking him to her. �They’re almost here.�

�Katara! I’m trying to��

It wasn’t really a kiss. Noses collided almost painfully, teeth hit causing pain to shoot through their skulls. It most certainly was not a kiss and it was decidedly uncomfortable. Zuko’s eyes widened and his exclamation of surprise was muffled by Katara’s mouth. Her sudden jerk threw him off balance and his hands groped at air, trying to push her away or catch his balance. He wasn’t sure which. She had a firm grip on him, her arms around his neck and he had no choice but to follow her as she fell back. They hit the wall, tripping over crates and barrels only to land on the ground. His hands found their place on her ribs�a little too high to be proper�and her legs wrapped around his waist, the high slits at the sides of her skirt falling open to reveal toned legs. It all happened too fast. She threw her head back, raked her nails down his back, fisting her hands in his shirt and arching her back, releasing the most erotic moan he had ever heard. His heart leapt and his hands moved of their own accord, one traveling down her side to slide down her thigh before pulling her hips tightly against his and the other slipping around her back as he buried his face in her neck. Light fell over them and they heard a soldier grunt. �Just some horny teenagers. Break it up, you two. Go home.�

Thankfully, the soldiers didn’t stick around to see if their orders were obeyed and they were left in darkness. Zuko stilled, listening to the sound of retreating footsteps, staring down at Katara as she panted beneath him. It was probably one of the strangest situation he’d ever been in and one he would take to his grave.

�Are they gone?�

Her voice had a husky quality to it that made his blood stir. �I think so.�

Neither moved, staring at each other in bewilderment. Zuko finally released a short, disbelieving laugh and dropped his forehead to her collarbone. Her grip on his shirt loosened and she relaxed. �Good. Now, you can get off of me.�

He sat back on his heels, watching as she sat up and attempted to straighten her hair and clothes. He caught the glance she shot at him and noticed her hands shook slightly as she smoothed out her skirt. She took a steadying breath, turning a serious look to him. �This didn’t happen.�

He could only nod. Sokka would kill him if he found out. Aang would probably kill him. Zuko was fully aware of the crush the young airbender had on Katara and he didn’t want to inadvertently trigger the Avatar State. No, he wouldn’t tell anyone. It was bad enough both their lips were bruised. Zuko winced. Hopefully she’d be able to explain away the bruise that was appearing on her neck. She rose, giving a definitive nod to nothing in particular, and started out of the alley. He watched her go, fingers flexing at the memory of her skin. Heat rose in his face and he looked away. It would not do to try that kiss again. Katara’s voice broke through his thoughts and he noticed she’d stopped to look back at him. �That was a really bad kiss.�

His jaw dropped, the words sputtering out of him, �It’s not my fault!�

Zuko Was No Coward – Lie to Me
Zuko Was No Coward – It’s a Love/Hate Relationship