"Kin" by Carl Sandburg

Brother, I am fire
Surging under the ocean floor.
I shall never meet you, brother—
Not for years, anyhow;
Maybe thousands of years, brother.
Then I will warm you,
Hold you close, wrap you in circles,
Use you and change you—
Maybe thousands of years, brother.

Author's Notes

This is my first long Legend of Korra story (my others are limited to poems, oneshots, and novellas), and the first to deviate from the canon. This story came to be in the same manner as "Finding What You Weren't Looking For": I read a fan fiction that inspired me to start writing my own story based on the main idea. I wrote a fanfic of a fanfic. In this case, the story was "dream of the lotus in bloom" by pulpofiction, and I was actually imagining what I hoped would happen in subsequent chapters. In both cases I ended up creating enough original material to start my own version of the trope. pulpofiction wrote in the present tense, so when I started this I did the same, and I've tried to keep it consistent throughout.

As a disclaimer, I acknowledge that I will be writing about complicated relationships regarding which I have no experience and limited knowledge. I am not a parent, I am not adopted, and I have no background in psychology. I am entering territory I've never explored before, so please forgive me if I write something that seems unrealistic for someone in that kind of situation. If you are a parent, adopted, or well versed in psychology, feel free to tell me in a review, and I may turn to you for advice. And to all my readers, if you think a main character is acting out-of-character, it is probably because their pasts and relationships have made them different from how they are in the show. Still, let me know if you think I have taken a character too far from his or her true self.

I would like to dedicate this story to all the victims (living or dead) of the Islamic State, the Lord's Resistance Army, and Boko Haram, especially keeping in mind all the children who have been kidnapped and forced to be soldiers, and their parents who wait and hope for their return. This story will be happier in many ways, but I hope it still makes both you and me reflect on the reality and pain of such tragedies. Please keep all victims of these groups in your prayers and thoughts.

Every chapter of this story is named after a song. If you do not know each song, I recommend looking them up so you understand how they correspond to the story. Music is a great source of inspiration for me and, like the quotes I include at the start of each chapter, sometimes expresses and articulates things better than I could.

I also cite pieces of artwork from DeviantArt that correspond to parts of my story or otherwise inspire me in its writing. I am sharing their titles with permission from their artists. These pieces can all be found in a collection on my DeviantArt account, under the same username as here.

I hope you enjoy this journey!