When she talks about auras and energies, Mai says she lives in her head. Ty Lee doesn't know about that. As far as she can tell, she lives in her body; she lives in the eager bunching of muscles in her thighs and feet, in the clean snap of her arms and fingers knifing into pressure points, in the hot pivot of her hips as the rest of her cartwheels and flips and flips and flips. She lives in her own delight over the succulent weight of her breasts, the round beat of her calves, the sweat shivering down strands of dark hair.
When Mai says she lives in her head, Azula says there's plenty of room.
But Azula is folded in so tight on herself, like scarlet paper dragonflowers they used to make as girls -- hundreds of tiny, cramped creases all needing to be just so perfect in order for the finished product to look right, like a blossom clenched into a blood fist -- so Ty Lee breathes deep and smiles pink at her. If Ty Lee had her way they would the three of them make flowers out of gauze tissue and silk that spread open at the brush of damp fingers, turning deep and moist where they were touched. If Ty Lee had her way they would break down all the barriers and scaly-hard encrusted images of not only themselves but their people, in a whirlwind of whipping hair and bruising kisses and demanding bodies, until the image is no image at all and they are the Fire Nation, one and every one bright proud clear crimson with no need for the blood fist.
It's complicated, though. Because to be honest Ty Lee gets all prickly and hungry inside when she fights and hits and she has to press her thighs together and breathe deep and smile pink and push it down, down until she's ready. So maybe that's how her people are; too aswirl with violent lust to be proud clear crimson just yet. But Ty Lee can see it, just over the horizon of the black sun, and she's starting to reach towards it.
( one more behind the cut )