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Fanfic / Guide Me Home

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Hey, you people wanted steam babies...

Guide Me Home is an Avatar: The Last Airbender Fanfic written by Qwi-Xux that has gained popularity in the fandom for... actually being good.

Essentially, it's an What Happened To All Those Mice, Hurt/Comfort Fic that follows Princess Ursa during all three books and is completely Canon compliant (well, until The Legend of Korra and the comic-book continuations came out, but that was two years later and so can be forgiven). Ursa has been living in the Earth Kingdom and secretly helping La Résistance. When she discovers a Fire Nation spy amongst the Earth Kingdom underground, she is forced to flee and is rescued by Chief Hakoda and his crew.

Ursa and the crew (especially Hakoda) eventually grow closer. Of course, they don't know she's from the Fire Nation...

It can be found here.


Provides Examples Of:

  • Apologizes a Lot: Ursa, due to her lingering guilt and feeling like she doesn't deserve any kindness. Hakoda lampshades it frequently.
  • And Here He Comes Now: After the war is ended, Zuko comes back from his prison meeting with Ozai asking about his mother and only getting a vague answer, and asking Iroh for more info. Guess who he sees in the room the moment he enters?
  • Arranged Marriage:
    • Ursa and Ozai.
    • There is also a nameless Northern Water Tribe couple who get married. That one could possibly be a Perfectly Arranged Marriage. They are "very much in love".
  • Badass Crew: The Southern Water Tribe warriors.
  • Big Damn Heroes: When Ursa is abducted by a Fire Nation mole, she is rescued by Toph.
  • Bittersweet Ending: At least from Ursa's perspective. The war is over, Hakoda and Ursa are together and Zuko has a mother again... but Azula is damaged almost beyond repair.
  • Advertisement:
  • Blazing Inferno Hellfire Sauce: Ursa cooks a Fire Nation dish for the crew. In her defense, she did warn them.
  • Broken Bird:
    • Ursa, at first.
    • Azula, even more so.
  • Call-Back: Hakoda uses the analogy of ice dodging to teach Ursa the lessons of going with life's flow, rolling with the waves, getting back up when you crash and trying again, and finding people you can trust to come find you. At the end of the story, ice dodging is the first thing Ursa and Hakoda do as a married couple.
  • Domestic Abuse: Like anyone needed another reason to hate Ozai - he burned Ursa as a reminder of what he could do to his family if she fails him.
  • Deadpan Snarker: It's a Water Tribe tradition apparently... but Mai's only line in the entire fic cements her position as Avatar's quintessential Deadpan Snarker.
    Mai: Wow. And I thought my family had issues.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Ursa, sometimes. She has a tendency to shut off her emotions when she feels that showing them would make her vulnerable, though Hakoda and the Southern Water tribe does a great job in drawing her out of it.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Toph, who saves Ursa from a Fire Nation spy in the Resistance.
  • Everyone Can See It: Just about everyone, from Hakoda's men, to the Northern Water Tribe, to Toph, can see the sparks between Hakoda and Ursa. As Notu, one of Hakoda's men, puts it:
    "I don't know who you two think you're kidding... but it's sure not us."
  • Elsewhere Fic: As befitting a story trying to answer What Happened to the Mouse?.
  • Female Gaze: After escaping from General Zhao's ship by swimming through icy waters, Ursa and Hakoda find a spot to change into dry clothes. When Ursa checks to see if Hakoda is not looking, she gets a look at his rear and has to repress her blush.
  • Flashback Nightmare: Ursa has many about her past... to the point where she actually finds it "refreshing" to have a normal nightmare.
  • Flat "What": Qwi-Xux manages to turn this trope into a Tear Jerker.
    Hakoda: With outside help from my son... and yours.
    Ursa: What?
  • Foregone Conclusion: Once she hears that Ba Sing Se has fallen to the Fire Nation, Ursa decides to go to the city, find Zuko and Azula, and get them to end the occupation. Yeah, that'll work.
  • Freudian Excuse: Katara and Azula in spades. They're getting better.
  • Groin Attack: While teaching Ursa how to fight, Hakoda pins her against the wall and accidently puts his hand over her burn scar. She panics, a Groin Attack ensues and Ursa is absolutely mortified afterwards. Yes, that is an actual Tear Jerker example of this trope.
  • Hates Being Touched: Ursa, at first, most likely due to the burn given to her by Ozai.
  • Happily Married:
    • Mikko. After he gets sick of telling single women in the Northern Water Tribe that he's married, he spends more time with Ursa to stave them off.
    • Also, Mila and Ran, later on.
  • Heroic BSoD: Ursa has one when she finds Zuko's wanted poster...and sees his scar.
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: Ursa is filled with guilt and shame at the start of the fic despite her work for the underground, mostly because of her role in Ozai's rise to power.
  • It's Personal: After Hakoda finds out that Ursa was married to Ozai and he finally has names to her oblique backstory (someone powerful threatening her son, an abusive husband who was willing to let his son die, her being forced to kill her father-in-law, forced to abandon her children who are both firebenders), the war becomes even more personal for him.
  • Killed Off for Real: Ornu, one of Hakoda's men, is killed holding off a squad of Fire Nation soldiers that found a hidden tunnel capable of ambushing the Water Tribesmen.
  • La Résistance: Ursa is part of one at the beginning, and it seems that the Order of the White Lotus fills this role more than it did in the cartoon.
  • Like Brother and Sister: Ursa eventually develops this type of relationship with most of the Water Tribe men; it's particularly strong with Mikko.
  • Mama Bear: Guess.
  • The Mole: Lots, of course, since this story is about an underground spy network. Special mention goes to Ran, an Order initiate operating from within the Fire Navy who helps Ursa and Hakoda escape from Zhao.
  • Motif Merger: Hakoda's betrothal necklace to Ursa has the symbols for the Water Tribe and the Fire Nation overlapping. It also merges the tradition of the Northern Water Tribe, as it and not the Southern Tribe uses betrothal necklaces.
  • Mundane Utility: At one point, Ran uses is firebending to make toast for The Duke.
  • Power of Trust: How Ursa finally gets through to an insane Azula after the war: walking by herself into her room in the asylum and letting her out of her restraints, and despite Azula initially attacking, reaffirming that she would do anything for her daughter.
  • Papa Wolf: Hakoda. The phrase Papa Polar Bear is actually used to describe him once he hears what General Fong did to his kids to get the Avatar to access the Avatar State.
  • Parent with New Paramour: After Ursa and Hakoda reveal their engagement, Zuko, Sokka and Katara all have to grapple with their parents falling in love and becoming step-siblings to each other. For the most part it's amicable, though Katara is the slowest to warm up.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Ursa delivers one to Ozai after the latter is jailed. At this point the readers are cheering for her.
  • Relationship Upgrade: From escaping from General Zhao, to working with General Xu, Ursa and Hakoda slowly acknowledge their feelings for each other. During their time in the Northern Water Tribe, she finally lets down her walls for him, and they end up making love for the first time.
  • Rescue Romance: Ursa's first encounter with Hakoda is rescuing her from a Fire Nation spy who just burned her inn down and is pursuing her.
  • Sadistic Choice: Azulon's order to Ozai to kill his son Zuko (and Ozai's willingness to go through with it) forces Ursa into one - either she loses her son, or she kills Azulon, makes Ozai Firelord, goes into exile, and is forced to abandon her children to her husband's mercies.
  • Sherlock Scan: Due to spending her whole life in the Fire Nation, Ursa has picked up on the subtleties on how firebenders walk and act. The first chapter has her IDing a person who knew the Trust Password of the Earth Kingdom underground but walked like a firebender as a Fire Nation Mole.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Ursa slowly develops feelings for Hakoda, due to how kind, trusting, and a loving father he is to his children, everything that Ozai isn't.
  • Stunned Silence: The entire room goes silent when Ursa and Hakoda meet after the war and share a Big Damn Kiss, right in front of their flabbergasted children.
  • Talking the Monster to Death: Ursa to Azula. The first time in Ba Sing Se goes badly for Ursa, the next few times after Azula is institutionalised requires a lot of time and effort before any headway is made.
  • There Is Only One Bed: Hakoda offers Ursa his blanket, claiming to be used to the cold. Ursa decides to take a third option and they end up sharing.
  • Tears of Joy: Ursa ends up crying these after Hakoda tells her that he met with Zuko and he's successfully changed sides and is out from under Ozai's thumb.
  • The Smurfette Principle: Applies when Ursa joins Hakoda and his all-men crew on their ship.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Ursa, who goes from a steadfast Fire Nation defector trying to run an inn for the Earth Kingdom Underground to a steadfast warrior in her own right. That said, she is left out of the final battle when an accident with a young Earthbending refugee breaks her leg.
  • Torture Always Works: Averted. The red spider-fly venom is nasty but unreliable, and often causes hallucinations.
  • They Do:
    • Ran and Mila ask Hakoda to marry them.
    • Ursa and Hakoda are finally married after the war.
  • True Companions: The Water Tribe men.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: This fic seems to exist to explain what happened to the mice, including Ursa, of course, Hakoda at various points, and also Longshot, Smellerbee, everyone else who split up from the Gaang at the beginning of "The Southern Raiders," and a few other people who showed up once and never appeared again.


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