Sokka kisses Zuko because he’s pretty, and annoying, and he wants to shut him up.
He keeps kissing him because Zuko kisses him back, and he’s inexperienced but more than enthusiastic enough to make up for it; now, Sokka doesn’t know how to stop. It’s not fair that the dude’s allowed be a bender and a swordsman, just like it’s not fair that Sokka got laughed at learning the in and outs of kissing with Suki and Zuko’s just...supernaturally good at it without even fucking trying.
There is no good in this world.
This was a sword match, damnit, and now Sokka’s blade and Zuko’s too have been allowed to drop into the dust. It’s disrespectful, but it’s not like Sokka’s gonna go and tell Master Piandao about it. If he does, he’s definitely going to tell him why, and he’s definitely going to blame it on Zuko.
Zuko, who Sokka currently has pinned up against a wall, who tried really hard to be mad about it until he wasn’t, until the smirk on his face was so fucking infuriating that Sokka just had to do something about it.
He’d meant to make him mad, but he wasn’t prepared for his bluff to be called. For Zuko to wrap an arm around his shoulders and reel him in, or to make interesting, breathy noises into his mouth, or to taste so fucking good. Who could hold Sokka responsible for himself when that’s what he’s up against?
A demon? A firebending makeout demon who knows that the quickest way to get into his pants is to kick his ass?
It’s not right.
“You’re thinking too much,” the other boy grumbles against his lips, “Knock it off.”
“I’m thinking the perfectly correct amount!” Sokka snaps back and pulls away, because no kisses for a smartass. Zuko glares at him. “Don’t look at me like that.”
“You get the look you deserve,” he grouches and tries another tactic, grabbing the nape of Sokka’s neck and trying to pull him closer. Sokka makes a feeble attempt to get some distance, but succeeds only in crowding him closer to the wall, which is...awesome for both of them, but definitely not what he was going for. “Look, it’s fun and a good way to take the edge off, right? You don’t have to love me to kiss me.”
The way he says it gives Sokka pause.
Anybody else says the same thing in that way, and Sokka’s going to shrug, and give his go ahead, because hell yeah. The way Zuko says it…
There’s vulnerability in his face, and in the way Zuko’s looking at him, blustery and borderline bratty but with just enough sincerity to make it real. Sokka leans in very slowly, and watches him very carefully, reaches out to cradle the back of Zuko’s head so it doesn’t crack against the wall. The little hitch of breath is what gives him away, that and the way his whole body relaxes, just a tiny bit.
Sokka cannot believe this shit.
“Holy shit,” he breathes. This has to be the greatest and most hilarious joke in the world. A cosmic prank. An...unexpected blessing? “Holy shit. You’ve got feels.”
Zuko sputters furiously and shoves with both hands; Sokka catches those hands and settles them on his own hips where they burn like a brand. They clench in the fabric of his pants, and there they stay.
Zuko’s still glaring at him, but it’s different now because now there’s actual hurt in that stare and that’s not right at all, that’s not at all what Sokka meant to do. He leans in and presses a kiss to the other boy’s forehead, to his unmarked cheek, to the spot of soft skin just below his ear that makes him shiver like he’s freezing and only one thing in the world is going to keep him warm.
“It’s not bad,” Sokka says, “I’m just...surprised.”
Surprised is an understatement, because how to fuck did he get so lucky that this gorgeous dude who can beat him up is also harboring some soft, squishy feelings inside that closed-off, princely heart of his? And to be honest, he hasn’t really considered Zuko like that until he kissed him, and it was amazing, but he’s not one to turn down a gift.
“Maybe I don’t love you—“ Yet, Sokka’s traitorous, opportunistic, sucker of a brain screams into the void, yet, “But is ‘like’ good enough?”
‘Like’ is good enough for Zuko, apparently, because the next thing Sokka knows he’s got firebender-warm lips on his, and do they all taste like this?— because he swears he can taste smoke and the spiced cinnamon tea that he prefers over a good, solid oolong.
“Who let you be so damn pretty?” Sokka breathes, and nibbles at Zuko’s lower lip until he whines and opens up for him. That same inexperience that was working so well for him earlier lets Sokka take the lead, and it’s great. “Did your girlfriend ever get mad about it?”
Zuko smirks at him, just a little bit, sharp and just a tiny bit sweet. He ducks his head in a failed attempt to look demure.
“On the contrary, I think it was part of the appeal.”
Oh, that is not fair at all.
“Did you let her push you around, let her think she was in charge just so you could get bossed a little bit?” For a second Sokka thinks he may have crossed a line there because Zuko goes absolutely still and doesn’t move, and he’s fully prepared to apologize and grovel appropriately for being bad at reading the room...and then Zuko’s pupils dilate and he lets out an audible, shivery breath. Sokka can feel the entire length of his body pressed up between him, and the wall, tense and taut like a bowstring. “You did. Holy shit.”
Fuck, he’s pretty.
“What about you? Did you do the same with your girlfriend?”
Sokka smiles, all teeth like a leopard-shark.
“Oh, sweetheart, we all know who was in charge in that relationship, and it definitely wasn’t me.” Sweetheart was a good word to use. Sokka makes a mental note to use it as often as possible, because the sight of Zuko flushing red all the way down his collar is one that he’s going to think about at night for a very, very long time. “You want some dirty details? She wouldn’t mind if I told you; it’s for a good cause after all.” Suki probably wouldn’t mind, because it’s definitely for a good cause.
Sokka will say literally anything he has to to keep that look of spellbound, embarrassed arousal on Zuko’s beautiful fucking face.
“I’ve been told that my oral skills are top notch,” Sokka continues, all sugar and promise, “Girls are a lot of fun. I’m sure I can have plenty of fun with boys too. You look like a hair-puller, and I can be very patient when it counts.”
Zuko looks like he’s about to combust, and when he lets out that shaky exhale, it comes with a tiny lick of flame that’s gone as soon as it appears. it’s enough that Sokka knows he’s still got it, and that Zuko knows it. He looks mortified but turned on anyway, and the combination looks so good on him that Sokka can’t help but kiss him.
Zuko’s terrible at using his words, but Sokka is very, very good at it. It may be a little bit mean to so blatantly push that advantage, but it’s obvious that the other boy likes it plenty, if the way he’s still staring is any indication.
“That’s— that’s—“ he stammers when he figures out how words work again, his fingers tugging anxiously on Sokka’s wolftail. Sokka wonders if Zuko knows that he's doing it, or if he really had him pegged that well.
“Tantalizing?” He replies. “Exciting? Titillating?”
Sokka laughs the laugh of someone who knows just a little bit better. Despite Zuko’s vehemence, he’s not any less into it, which means that Sokka is already even more into it.
“Ah, gorgeous, no it’s not,” he tells him. “It’s fun. Sometimes you just wanna do something a little more than just kissing.”
And Sokka’s playing his shit up way more than he’s got the right to right now, but objectively speaking he does have more experience out of the two of them, and if his instincts are good (and they usually are), Zuko definitely isn’t averse to his chattiness.
Not even close.
“You’re not thinking big enough, sweetheart,” Sokka whispers into Zuko’s ear, nibbles at the lobe for emphasis, “Tongues are unappreciated. Kissing on the lips is just an appetizer. Tongues can go here,” Sokka presses a finger gently, so gently, into the pulse point of Zuko’s throat, “Here,” down his collarbone to pause and then rub directly over where he knows his right nipple is at. Zuko’s not breathing at all. “Here,” down to his slim hips to run fingertips over the edge of the sash around his waist, “Here, ” he says low and filthy, and here Sokka thinks he can press his luck, slips his arm around to finally get a touch and a squeeze of grouchy, firebender backside, “Or even here.”
Sokka swallows Zuko’s sudden, startled wail down his throat when he shifts, sets his knee between the other boy’s legs, and presses. Zuko’s whole body snaps, and then he slumps forward to loop his arms around Sokka’s waist and squeeze tight, shivering through aftershocks like he’s just…
Stunned and shocked, Sokka reaches out to cradle Zuko’s face in his hands.
“Did you just…?”
Zuko doesn’t answer with words, just furiously yanks his face out of Sokka’s hands and proceeds to bury it in the crook of his neck like an ostrich horse trying to bury its head in the sand. His whole body’s radiating a heat that Sokka can feel through his clothes and oh, oh, oh, he’s fucking done for . All it takes is that second to think, oh shit, that’s precious and that’s it, poof, there goes Sokka, right over the cliff.
And that, almost more than the sweet, sweet image of the prince of the Fire Nation coming, practically untouched, right there in his hands that’s going to be engraved into his brain for the rest of his life, is what sends Sokka’s backburnered boner into full-on notice me! territory.
Which Sokka makes himself ignore, possibly for the first time in his entire hormonal existence. The boner will keep, and so will all of his material for later. Right now, Sokka sets his focus on Zuko, still trying to get his breathing back to normal. He feels a little bad now for playing so hard when it’s clear that the other boy didn’t know the rules.
“Are you okay?” Sokka asks, seriously, because Zuko’s just standing there and hugging him, and it’s definitely good but it’s definitely weird, and Sokka wraps his arms around him and peels Zuko off the wall so he can press him into his chest. “Did I overstep?”
Mutely, Zuko shakes his head into his neck, makes a vague, hand-wavey gesture at him.
“No,” he answers finally, and something that Sokka didn’t realize was wound up tight in his chest loosens and unwinds, “It was good. Really good.” He won’t quite look Sokka in the eyes, but he doesn’t have to. Debauched is the only word screaming through Sokka’s brain to describe him, loose and rumpled and pliant.
He’s never seen Zuko’s face do what it’s doing now. He’s not smiling or anything, but his whole expression’s gone soft and sweet and content, and there’s no way in hell he knows that he’s, like, rubbing his cheek on the fabric of Sokka’s shoulder.
Oh shit, he’s cute. That’s not fair .
Cute and hair-trigger and cuddly and he can kick Sokka’s ass?
Sokka is 100% screwed.
“Oh fuck, you’re thinking,” Zuko mumbles. What, Sokka thinks, does he really think that Sokka’s gonna just play around and then leave him high and dry? That’s rude as hell.
Except that maybe, judging from what he knows about Zuko, the guy’s got a fairly decent track record for people taking what they want and then leaving him high and dry, and makes a conscious decision to be more charitable.
And that might have to mean talking about his feelings.
“Listen, dude, I know I talk a whole lot, but I promise, I’m not fucking around with you. I’m not just gonna mess with you, okay? I may not have to love you to have some fun—“ yet, yet, yet screams that treacherous part of him that knows full well that he’s absolutely fucked, “—but that doesn’t mean that I don’t really like you, too.” Sokka leans in and kisses him gently, rubs a thumb down Zuko’s sharp jaw. “Just because we’re playing doesn’t mean that it’s a game.”
And just because things aren’t serious doesn’t mean that they don’t matter.
“This doesn’t mean I’m easy, you know,” Zuko tells him, and Sokka laughs despite himself.
“Um, sorry to tell you, buddy, but I beg to differ.” He feels like he can take some liberties after this and can’t resist giving Zuko’s ass a friendly squeeze. Like making friends! Very good, intimate friends.
“You know we’re never talking about... that, ever again, right?”
“Oh, baby,” Sokka croons, and his flagging boner perks up when Zuko’s frame gives this funny little shiver at the endearment, and it’s so weird to be both turned on and charmed by him at the same time, “We’re gonna talk about it all the time.”
“Never again !”
Zuko glares and makes to pull away like he’s going to stomp off and pretend like this never happened, which is 100% not allowed , and Sokka reels him back in and kisses his nose, and while he’s still sputtering about it, leans in to whisper in his ear,
“Do you wanna know a secret, honey?”
Zuko goes very, very still.
“I’m easy, too.”