Fanfiction Fridays: all the choirs in my head sing, no

“Variety,” I muttered to myself as I dug through hundreds of bookmarks looking for a fanfic for today. “Not Star Trek, not Avengers… maybe femslash?” My bookmarks, unhelpfully, offered me Sherlock Holmes (BBC, RDJ, and ACD canon) and Destiel.

23501422Finally, I struck pay dirt with a Legend of Korra story: all the choirs in my head sing, no by sable_tyger. This is a short, bittersweet fic that deals much more delicately with the teen relationship drama of Korra and company than the show really ever did. The story which is from Korra’s point of view, addresses Bolin’s feelings for Korra, Korra’s feelings about Mako and Asami’s relationship, and, eventually, Korra’s feelings towards Asami.

One of my deepest complaints about Legend of Korra was how quickly it devolved into a weird love polygon. I thought it was frustrating that we finally got a female adventure protagonist and one of her main conflicts is that the boy she likes likes someone else. Furthermore, the juxtapostition of goofy, heart-of-gold Bolin being made to ‘compete’ against his suave, bad-boy older brother for Korra’s love had the dangerous potential to fall into friendzone rhetoric.

I also thought that it was totally shitty that in the finale, Mako apparently dumped Asami offscreen, so that along with getting back her and her friends’ bending, defeating the bad guy, learning to airbend, accessing the Avatar state, and becoming a ‘true hero’, Korra could also get the love of her teenage life. It just seemed like lazy storytelling on top of poor characterization. So although I did enjoy a lot of the Legend of Korra story, there was a lot about the romantic entanglements that simply drove me to look for any kind of fix-it fanfic.

Given my distaste of the canon pairings, however, I preferred to turn to something a little different. I’ve always found the Korrasami pairing an intriguing one, as the two girls embody such different ideas about strong women. Korra is a brawler, and takes comfort in physical strength and the strength of her bending; furthermore, as the Avatar, she’s used to getting what she wants. Asami, as a wealthy heiress, is also no stranger to getting what she wants, but where Korra is rough edges and fists, Asami is subtlety and finesse. Maybe they’re jealous of each other—Korra of Asami’s easy femininity, and Asami of Korra’s openness and brash naïveté. Maybe it’s something else. Either way, this pairing spoke to me a lot more than any of the hamfisted romantic intrigues in the actual show.

Asami_and_Korraall the choirs in my head sing, no was written before the season one finale, and so references a slightly different series of events from the canon. It deals less with big action-y events, however—the only major event is the pro-bending tournament, which happens offscreen—and focuses more on gently fixing the relationships that the show mishandled. Whether that means Korra and Bolin re-establishing themselves as the tightest of bros, or Korra finally starting to accept Asami’s reaching out to her, it is cathartic to read. And the writing, which uses a very quiet, simple style, is a pleasure, and perfect for the tone and content of the story.

This is a relatively short fic, clocking in at around 5k, so it isn’t a huge time investment to read. Check it out here at Ao3.