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Fanfic / Abuse Cycle

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Abuse Cycle by OddlyEnding is a The Legend of Korra fanfiction that revolves around the Makorra relationship. It traces the slow decline of Mako and Korra's relationship into eventual abuse and addresses politics within the The Legend of Korra world.

Abuse Cycle is... polarizing within the fandom. It actually began as an initial fanfiction divided into parts and a prequel was later written.

Found in parts: The original version, Part 1: What Tenzin Saw, Part 2: What Naga Saw, Part 3: What Pema Saw, Part 4: What Asami Saw, Part 5: What Ikki Saw, and Part 6: What Meelo Saw.



  • Adult Fear: The reaction many people had to the Domestic Abuse in the original.
  • Always Someone Better: How Bolin feels about Mako.
  • Anguished Declaration of Love:
    • Asami to Korra.
    • Korra's cousin Desna to Shila (Sakari in disguise).
  • Artifact Title: The abuse takes a back seat to the plot and relationships in the expanded version. Also the chapter blocking of "What ____ Saw" becomes increasingly incorrect. In the original version "What Naga Saw" never mentions Naga once. In the expanded version, most chapters have little to do with the titular character of the piece and is hardly ever from their point of view. ("What Meelo Saw" for example, Meelo is there, but just as background noise and it never goes to his point of view.)
  • Bastard Boyfriend: Mako is a jerk to Korra. He also convinces her into an open relationship to sleep with Princess Achika.
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  • Betty and Veronica: Mako is the Veronica to Asami's Betty for Korra's Archie.
  • Broken Bird: Sakari.
  • Butt-Monkey: Bolin, at least, romantically. He's in love with Korra, but she only notices Mako and Asami.
  • The Charmer: There's a female version of this in the form of Princess Achika. She has several steady girlfriends and sleeps with anyone good-looking enough. However, unlike a perfect charmer, she's interested in sex on top of flirting.
  • Chickification: Has been accused of doing this to Korra, since the author turns her from a boisterous Action Girl into a borderline Damsel in Distress.
  • Closet Key: Both Asami and Korra identified as straight before falling in love with each other. Now they're both bisexual.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: The entire fic.
  • Cool Big Sis: Kya, especially to Lin.
  • Daddy's Girl: Sakari is darker version of this. She welcomes Amon/Noatok into her life with open arms and after his death, picks up his goals willingly.
  • Darker and Edgier
  • Deconstruction: The fic explores a lot of things left only partially finished or half-finished and expands on them, particularly the bender/non-bender conflict which draws from real situations.
  • Domestic Abuse: Mako to Korra.
  • Ethical Slut: Achika wouldn't sleep with anyone whose in a relationship...unless they get permission from their partner first.
  • Friends with Benefits: Mako and Achika. Possibly subverted because it's implied that he developed feelings for her.
  • Gayngst: Subverted with Korra, after realizing that she has romantic feelings for Asami. She was shocked at first, but she quickly accepted being bi.
  • Girl-on-Girl Is Hot: Bolin spends his nights listening to Asami and Korra having sex.
  • Gorn: The excerpt of What Jinora Saw has Commander Bumi in a destroyed village.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Mako is jealous of Korra's abilities and Bolin and Asami are trying not to be jealous of Mako's relationship with Korra.
  • Harem Seeker: Achika has six steady girlfriends in addition to a long string of lovers.
  • Hotter and Sexier: Much more blatantly sexual than the show.
  • The Immodest Orgasm: Korra, Asami, and the girl Achika leaves Mako for.
  • Jerkass: Mako.
  • Lethal Chef: Korra, apparently.
  • Lifetime Movie of the Week: The fic reads like one.
  • Love Dodecahedron: Mako and Asami both love Korra. Bolin loves Korra too, but doesn't have a shot. Korra's in love with Mako, but has feelings for Asami. Meanwhile, Mako is sleeping with Achika, who Really Gets Around. Also, Iroh is in love with Bolin.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Amon is Sakari's father. And Azula is her grandmother.
  • Manly Gay: Iroh.
  • The Mentor: Guru Solta helps Korra with controlling the Avatar State.
  • The Mole: Sakari, disguised as Shila, becomes Katara's student in hopes of avenging her father.
  • No Guy Wants an Amazon:
    • Mako feels emasculated by Korra and, though justified, tells her to stop displaying her strength so he can feel better about himself.
    • Pema's advice for Korra's relationship problems is for her to be more submissive and docile.
  • Not Quite Dead: Amon is alive, but he dies later on.
  • Obligatory Swearing: Korra shouts "fuck you" in one scene. In fact, everyone is a lot freer with the F-word than you'd expect from the cast of an all-ages cartoon.
  • Platonic Life-Partners: Asami and Bolin. They're so close, they stay friendly even after realizing that they're both in love with Korra.
  • Polyamory: Mako and Korra were in an open relationship while he was in the Fire Nation. Mako slept with Achika and Korra slept with Asami.
  • Really Gets Around: Princess Achika.
  • Real Women Don't Wear Dresses: Inverted. Mako not so subtly tries to make Korra more feminine. He specifically tells her to wear more revealing dresses, makeup, and leave her hair down instead of in the usual Tomboyish Ponytail.
  • Sexy Discretion Shot: While it blatantly admits that everyone is having sex and shows some sexual contact, the fic doesn't elaborate on what's going on the bedroom.
  • Shipper on Deck: Bolin for Korra/Asami.
  • Shown Their Work: Even people who hate this fic admit that OddlyEnding did a great job at realistically portraying an abusive relationship. A bit too realistic for some.
  • Straight Gay: Iroh.
  • Street Urchin: Korra, Bolin, and Asami visit and feed a group of street kids on the Southern Border of Republic City. Asami eventually adopts them.
  • Surprise Pregnancy: Lin becomes pregnant after sleeping with Tenzin.
  • These Hands Have Killed: During a chi-blocker attack on the restaurant she was eating at, Korra accidentally kills several non-benders and injures Mako because she lost control of the Avatar State. It doesn't help her reputation among non-benders.
  • Too Kinky to Torture: Implied with Mako and Achika
  • The Triads and the Tongs: Korra stops the Triple Threat Triad from abusing some street kids.
  • We All Live in America: Despite the heavily Chinese-influenced 1920s aesthetic of The Legend of Korra itself, Mako is hell-bent on forcing Korra to conform to mainstream 21st-century American standards of beauty.
  • Wham Line: Amon (to his daughter, Sakari): I mean, my child, that I am going to show you how you can control all 4 elements... without needing to be the Avatar.


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