Hello. This is it, my first Avatar Fic, so be kind. I dedicate this fic to ZutaraShewolf777 for putting me in one of her drawings on Deviantart. Now let's get started.
Disclaimer: I don't own Avatar: The Last Airbender. It belongs to Nickelodeon. Also, this Fic takes place after "Crossroads of Destiny" My own little take on the season finale.
Long Ago, the four nations lived together in harmony. Then everything changed when the Fire Nation Attacked. Only the Avatar, master of all four elements, could stop them. But when the world needed him most, he vanished…
A hundred years passed and my brother and I discovered the new Avatar; an Airbender named Aang. And although his Airbendings skills are great, he has a lot to learn before he's ready to save anyone. But I believe that Aang can save the world.
Book Three: Fire
Chapter 1: The Plan
Our story begins in a forest at night. There we see, by the moonlight, damage to the trees and plants; from cuts coming from blades, to burns and singes on the tree barks. We now see that, on the grass filled ground, were a group of people in green uniforms, some facing down, others facing up, most of them not moving, and three of them stripped of their uniforms. However we do see movement from one of the uniformed figures. The person is facing down and is trying to turn over. The person struggles until finally, turning over, revealing that it is a woman, wearing white and red face make-up, and is struggling to breath. This woman is known as Suki, leader of a group of female warriors called the Kyoshi Warriors. She stood there for who knows how long, continuing with her labored breathing. She was in incredible pain and was wondering if she was going to live. She and her warriors were ambushed by three young ladies, no older then them, from the Fire Nation; Mai, Ty-Lee and Princess Azula of the Fire Nation. The three, though outnumbered by the Warriors, managed to take them all down, steal three of their warrior garments, weapons, and make-up, and leave them all for dead. She was just about to give up all hope and letting death take her when, suddenly, she heard a noise that sounded like a large animal growing.
Suki: (Grunting) What? What was …?
She heard the growl again, this time, it was louder. She concentrates; trying to figure out what kind of animal is it.
Suki: …It couldn't be.
Just overhead, she sees what looked like a giant flying animal, flying with no wings or anything. The creature circles the area and lands near it, we now see that it is a giant bison with six legs and brown arrow marks on its fur. On its back, were a group of people riding on it. one of them, a 14 year old boy, with tan skin, blue eyes, wearing blue clothing and has his brown hair tide behind his head, began jumping off the bison and running towards Suki, with fear rising on his face.
The boy rushes towards Suki's side, carefully trying to raise Suki's head up. She turns towards the boy, trying to focus her eyes on him.
Suki: Sokka…? (Coughs) I can't believe it. You're here.
The boy, Sokka, starts to cry as Suki gave him a small smile. He tries to hold back the tears, but is failing.
Sokka: Suki… You're okay.
He then turns back to the group of people, focusing on a teenage girl dressed like him, and has the same tanned skin, having her hair tied in brads.
Sokka: Katara! Get some water! HURRY!
The scene changes and Suki is now sitting up, with bandages on her chest and her right arm in a sling, standing in front of a fire that the group made. The group in question were people Suki actually met before. The boy and girl in blue, Sokka and Katara, are siblings from the Southern Water Tribe. Sokka is a warrior who has a funny side to him mostly, and Katara, his sister, is a master Waterbender. Another girl, 12 years, in green clothing, with black hair and milky-white eyes is known as Toph Bei Fong, from a small town in the Earth Kingdom. Toph is an Earthbender who is completely blind in both eyes, but she "sees" using Earthbending by feeling the vibrations on the earth. Another boy, also 12, wearing tattered yellow and orange clothing, bald and having light blue arrow tattoos on his body is known as Aang, from the Southern Air Temple and last of Airbenders. Aang is what is known as the Avatar; the only person who can master all four bending arts, and with him is his animal guide, the Flying Bison, Appa, and his pet Flying Lemur, Momo, who was sitting by Toph's shoulder. However, she didn't recognize the last person, their new arrival, a man in fancy green and yellow clothing, glasses, a hat with the Earth Kingdom symbol of the square in the circle, and is with a bear in similar clothing. As she was trying to figure out they were, Katara interrupted her thoughts.
Katara: Suki. Here, drink this.
She passes Suki a cup of hot tea and she takes it with her good arm.
Suki: Thank you. (Takes a sip) How did you guys find me?
Aang: Well, it was kinda by accident. We were leaving Ba Sing Se when I Noticed Appa flying in a different direction at a fast speed. I was training with a Guru and he taught me how to sense energy in a creature, so when I did Appa, I saw his memories about how you and the other Kyoshi Warrior helped him. I guess he was worried if you were okay.
Sokka: I'm just glad you are okay, Suki. I don't know what I would have done if you… (About to break down) if you'd…
Suki: Sokka. It's okay, I'm alive because of you, all of you. But what about the others?
Katara: Two of them are okay; they still need medical attention. For now they're resting. But…I'm afraid… you three are the only ones who made it.
Suki: Grrr… That Firebending wench! She and her two cronies did this! Killing off my Kyoshi Warriors!
Sokka: Not to mention disguising themselves as such.
Suki: Who knows what they can do now that they look like us.
Toph: Too late for that, fan girl.
Toph: They already found a use for those outfits you girls wear.
Suki: What are you talking about?
Katara: (Sighs) You might want to sit back for a moment. It's a long story.
So for about an hour, Katara, Sokka and the others explained what happened in Ba Sing Se: How the city was ignorant about the war because of Earth King's Advisor; Long Feng and his Dai Li Earthbenders. How Azula, Mai and Ty-Lee, disguised as Kyoshi Warriors, teamed up with Long Fei for a coup to take down the Earth King and his Generals, only to betray Long Feng and take control of the Dai Li. How the former Fire Nation Prince, Zuko, who with his Uncle, Former General Iroh, were hiding in Ba Sing Se, only to be discovered by Katara, turned on Iroh and joined Azula. And how Azula performed a Sneak Attack on Aang when he was in the Avatar State, almost killing him and the Avatar Cycle along with it, if it wasn't for Katara and the Spirit Oasis water, Aang would have been dead completely. Katara left out the part where she and Zuko were trapped in the cell under the crystal catacombs of old Ba Sing Se. Suki was shocked at all this information, trying to take it all in.
Suki: So let me get this strait: the Firebender, Azula, is now in control of Ba Sing Se?
Suki: And this guy here (pointing to the man with the bear) is the Earth King of Ba Sing Se?
Earth King: (disappointed) Former king.
Suki: And that same woman almost killed Aang?!
Aang: Yep. Got the scar here to prove it.
He turns around to show that there was a huge burn mark, which had been healed slowly, right on his back.
Suki: (wince) Ouch.
Aang: Tell me about it.
Suki: What's going happen now?
Toph: Now? (Nonchalantly) Oh, about the end of the world as we know it.
Katara: Very funny, Toph.
Earth King: No, she's right. Now that the Earth Kingdom has fallen, there's no stopping the Fire Nation now, not even the Avatar can save us.
Aang: You know I'm standing right here. And besides, the Earth Kingdom hasn't fallen yet.
Katara: Aang, Azula and Zuko are practically in charge of Ba Sing Se, with control of the throne and the Dai Li, it's just a matter of time before the city is complete under their control.
Aang: it's just like Katara said, it's gonna be hours before Azula takes full control of the city. And the only other Fire Nation people there are her side-kicks; Mai and Ty-Lee.
Toph: And Zuko
Aang: (Annoyed) Yes, and Zuko. Look the point is, that it's only them, we can overwhelm them because we outnumber them.
Sokka: Aang, have you been hitting the Cactus Juice? It doesn't matter if we outnumber those crazy ladies; they still have the Dai Li.
Suki: Yeah, and those three aren't exactly weak. They took down armies ten times their size, not to mention my warriors couldn't handle them.
Aang: True, but we still have the element of surprise.
Toph: What are you getting at, Twinkle Toes?
Aang: With any luck, if any luck, Azula will think I'm dead, and the avatar is no more since I was in the Avatar State. With that, she'd have her guard down.
Sokka: … Hey, yeah! If any luck … (Stars to thinks)
Katara: (whispers) Any minute, he's gonna shout "I have a plan!"
Sokka: …Guys, I have a plan!
Katara: (whispers) told ya.
Aang: So what have you got, Sokka?
Sokka: We might be able to pull of a sneak-in like we did when we tried to get to the Earth King before. Only this time, we have to look like Fire Nation. We just have to make a Quick trip back to Omashu.
Toph: But from what you told us, it's already under the control of the Fire Nation.
Aang: … Oh I get it.
Sokka: Then let's get going. We have no time to lose.
Suki: Do you think we can make a stop back to Kyoshi Island? The other Warriors deserve a proper burial with their remains in their homeland.
Sokka: … Of course, Suki.
Suki: And this time, I'm coming with you. I have a score to settle with Azula
Aang: Thanks Suki. We need all the help we can get.
The scene now changes to Ba Sing Se, the Earth Kings palace to be precise. Inside the throne room, a girl, about 15, with black hair, amber colored eyes, wearing red armored clothing was sitting on the thrown. In front of here were two men dressed identically in black with the green symbol of the Earth Kingdom on the robes, with stone gloves and shoes, and wide helmets concealing their faces. On her right were two girls, about the same age as the one in the throne, both in red clothing, one with brown hair, wearing more of pink then red, and the other with black hair, wearing long, noblewomen's clothing. And on her right, a teenage boy, 16, with black messed-up hair, wearing similar red armored clothing and a huge burned scar over his left eye. The girl in the throne is Princess Azula, the girls on her right are Mai and Ty-Lee, the two in front were two Dai Li Agents, and on her left is the former Prince Zuko.
Azula: How's our prisoner doing?
Dai Li #1: We've detained your uncle as per your instructions. His arms and legs are bounded in metal and stone, and are kept from performing any and all motions.
Azula: Good. And make sure, when he's giving any food or drink, that it's ice cold. I don't want him escaping like before.
Dai Li #1: Yes, your highness.
Azula: And now all we have to do is alert father on our victory. Dispatch a messenger hawk to the Fire Nation, immediately.
Dai Li #2: (Nervous) Uh… That's impossible, you're highness.
Azula: (pauses, then in a cold, intimidating manner)… What was that?
Dai Li #2: (Nervous) Um… (Swallows) we… don't have any messenger hawks… or any other kind of messenger birds. Long Feng Ordered it to be against the law. (Getting more nervous) It was one of the many reasons how the Earth King was unaware of the war.
The Dai Li Agents was practically sweating; he saw what Azula is capable of and was very nervous about what she'd do now. However, she didn't look any and all angry… on the outside at least.
Azula: No messenger birds, huh? Well, looks like we'll have to find another way. You're may leave now.
The two Dai Li Agents bow and start to leave.
Azula: Except you. (Points at Dai Li #2)
The second one swallows nervously as the first one leaves.
Dai Li: Please forgive me you're highness. (Bows down) Please have mercy.
Azula: Mercy? Dai Li, if there's anything you've learned from me is this: I don't do mercy.
The second she said that, she got up and began to move her arms in a pattern that caused her fingers to spark electricity. She shoots her fingers forward, launching a bolt of lightning from her fingertips and right onto the Dai Li Agent, killing him before he hit the ground.
Azula: Ty-Lee, order some solders to dispose of this failure's carcass.
Ty-Lee: Yes Azula.
Ty-Lee cartwheels her way from the throne room.
Azula: Mai, have a few of the Dai Li escort you to the nearest town that have messenger birds.
Mai: (To herself) Better then just standing here. (Aloud) Yes Azula.
She then walks away, leaving the room, leaving Azula and Zuko alone.
Azula: This will take longer then I though. Fortunately, with the Avatar gone, we shouldn't worry about his little team of failures. They're probably still mourning over their lost savior.
It was at this moment that Azula noticed that Zuko hasn't really said much after they teamed up.
Azula: You've been awfully quiet, Zuko. Zuko, What ever is the matter?
Zuko: I guess I'm still upset.
Azula: About uncle? I already told you; he betrayed you. Aiding the Avatar, I'd expect that from him.
Zuko: I still feel bad though. I mean, before all this, he was the one who really cared about me.
Azula: Don't worry, brother. It'll pass soon. It's time to stop looking into the past, and begin looking into the future. Once father gets the word of how we cause the destruction of Ba Sing Se and the Avatar, he will reward us, you especially, he will restore your honor and will be free to go home.
Zuko: (pauses for a moment) I'm turning in for the night.
Zuko turn to Azula, bowing before he begins leaving the throne room.
Azula: Sweet dreams, Zuzu…
As Zuko leave the room completely, Azula's smile turns much more devious.
Azula: … You'll need it.
The scene now changes to a birds-eye view of a small island where we see Appa flying away from it. We now see a much more close up view on Appa and we see the group of kids, and the Earth King and his bear, riding on Him. Aang is wearing a new set of Air Nomad clothes he managed to get when he returned to his home in the Southern Air Temple. Suki promised her people at Kyoshi that she would return as soon as she finished paying her dept to the Avatar for saving her life and the lives of the remaining Kyoshi Warriors. Toph was grabbing onto Appa with her face buried in his fur, she lifts her head up to speak.
Toph: I'm serious. Next town we're in, we're getting a new saddle!
Aang: Okay, Sokka. So the plan is that we sneak back to Omashu, Ambush a bunch of the Fire Nation guards, steal their uniforms and enter Ba Sing Se in the disguise of Fire Nation royals.
Sokka: Simple, no?
Suki: (Sighs) Simple, no! It's anything but! We would need to attack Royals too, not just guards. Not to mention we not all the same size.
Sokka: don't worry Suki; we'll cross that bridge when we get to it. We just have to quickly get to Omashu. Full Speed, Appa! Yip-Yip!
The hours passed slowly while the group was in the air. It was agreed and Aang and Katara would keep an eye on things while the rest tried to sleep. Both Katara and Aang were on Appa's head silently watching where they were going. Aang decided to break the silence.
Aang: Katara, is everything okay? You've been quiet for awhile now. Is anything on your mind?
Katara: I don't know if I want to talk about it.
Aang: You know, you once told me that it's okay to let any feelings out. It's because of that I'm not getting all those nightmares. Now, come on, tell me what's wrong.
Katara: (Sighs) Well, I guess it has to do with Zuko.
Aang: (Shouts) WHAT?! He didn't hurt you when you were trapped with him, were you?! I swear if he did I'll-!
Katara: (covers Aang's mouth) SHHHH! Aang, you want to wake everyone up?
Aang: (whispers) ooh, sorry.
Katara: It's alright Aang, but you shouldn't worry. He didn't hurt me when we were there. Actually, to be honest, we were kinda getting along.
Aang: Getting along?
Katara: Yes, you see, right before you and Iroh busted in and found us…I discovered something about Zuko, something that we have in common.
The scene changes back in the crystal jail cell Katara and Zuko were in; Katara is standing over Zuko, who was sitting with his back at her, and wearing brown Earth Kingdom clothing, shouting at him.
Katara: You have no idea what this war has put me though! (Turns around and scrunches down, holding herself) Me personally!
Her eyes were tearing up as she was holding on to the necklace belonging to her mother.
Katara: (breaking down) The Fire Nation took my mother away from me.
She then begins to cry. Zuko, who heard this, turn to her slowly as a concerned and sadden look appeared on his face.
Zuko: … I'm sorry.
He then turns to her completely, facing her as she was crying.
Zuko: That's something we have in common.
Katara head when up when she heard this and her eyes widened. Drying her eyes, she turns to Zuko.
Katara: W… What was that?
Zuko: I said… I lost my mother as well.
She turns to him completely and stares at him. Katara didn't know what to think. She didn't believe it a first, she though Zuko was just trying to trick her. But when she looked into his eyes, she saw hurt in them; a hurt that she had only seen in either herself or Sokka. That's when she realized…
Katara: You're telling the truth.
He only nods. Katara gets up on her feet and begins walking towards him. She sits down next to him.
Katara: How long?
Zuko: When I was nine, almost nearing ten. I'll never forget the last words she said to me: "No matter what happens, never forget who you are." I… I don't even know if she's still alive.
Zuko turns away from Katara, trying to keep his own tears from coming. All this time, she never knew. Not her, Aang, or anyone else did. Zuko had his own troubles with the Fire Nation. Just learning about this, Katara asked him something that… well, she and the rest of the gang have been wondering for a while…
Katara: How did this happen?
She puts her hand over his scar, but doesn't touch it. Zuko sees this and he gets up, with Katara following. He turns away from Katara, staring at one of the crystals in the cave cell they were in, seeing his refection in the crystal, as if wondering if he should answer her.
Zuko: (long pause) … My father.
Katara only gasped at this
Aang: (in shock) His own father gave him that scar?!
Katara: Uh-huh. He said that he was in a war meeting in his father's war chamber. He spoke out against a plan using new recruits as bait for a plan of invasion and was challenged to a fire duel.
Aang: I think I've heard of that. When I was with my friend Kuzon, he told me about how some nobles would fight for important matters. I think it's called an "Agni Kai."
Katara: Yeah. Well, Zuko accepted the challenge, thinking he'd duel the General he spoke out. But when he turned it face his opponent, it was his father.
Aang: Why was it his father?
Katara: Zuko said that that because he spoke out in Ozai's war room, he disgraced him and had to duel him.
Aang: What did Zuko do?
Katara: Surprisingly, he begged his father for forgiveness and mercy. He didn't want to fight his own dad. But Ozai was ruthless, he gave Zuko neither.
Aang: Wow… so that scar…
Katara: Ozai struck him right on his eye. He was lucky his eye never when blind.
Aang: What happened then?
The scene now changes to inside a room. We see Zuko, sleeping in his bed, tossing and turning. He was having a bad dream from the looks of it. But it was more of a memory.
In the Dream, Zuko is standing in front of his father, in the war room, hidden in the shadows with his uncle Iroh standing on one side and Azula on the opposite side. On the left side of his head were bandages, concealing the burn that'll soon be his mark, the scar. Ozai began to speak.
Ozai: Prince Zuko, you have shown much weakness in our Agni Kai. As well as much disgrace. How can you expect to lead the Fire Nation as Fire Lord when you couldn't fight a simple fire duel?
Zuko didn't even answer back, he was silent.
Ozai: Prince Zuko, by the authority as Fire Lord, I hear by banish you from the Fire Nation, stripped of your rank as prince and your honor.
Zuko gasped at this and was shocked. His honor was all he had left in the world.
Zuko: NO! Father, please, Anything but that!
Ozai: My word is final!
Zuko: But Father, Isn't there anyway I can prove myself to you? Isn't there anything I can do to have my honor back?
Fire Lord Ozai though about this for a moment, then he smiled under the shadows.
Ozai: There is…only one way. As you know, my son, there is but three years left until Sozin's comet comes back to earth and empowers us with its flame. The only person who can stop us from total control on the world would be the Avatar.
Zuko: But… isn't the Avatar already dead? Great Grandfather Sozin ordered the destruction of all the Airbenders.
Ozai: Yes, but I've been having this feeling that maybe he survived. If he did, I want you to capture him and bring him before me. Only until you have the Avatar in your grasp will you be free to come home, with your honor.
Zuko: Thank you, father. I swear I won't let you down again.
Ozai: (to himself) No, no you would not.
Zuko bows down and begins to leave when suddenly, Iroh spoke.
Iroh: If I may, brother. I don't think leaving the boy on his own is such a good idea. If it is alright with you, I wish to accompany him.
Zuko turned back, staring at his uncle.
Ozai: …Very well, Iroh. You shall accompany him, but you are not to help him in capturing the Avatar, he must do that on his own.
Iroh: Thank you, brother.
Suddenly, scene then changes to total darkness. Everyone disappeared, all except Zuko, who was in the middle of the darkness. He then starts hearing voices all around.
I'm free to change my own destiny, even if I'm never able to be free of this mark
Maybe you can be free of it. I have healing abilities. I don't know id it'll work, but…
Suddenly, Zuko began to fall; falling into an infinite abyss and the voices he heard changes, changing into more angered tones.
I THOUGHT YOU HAD CHANGED!
I have changed.
The scene vanished before his eyes and Zuko jerked awake. His eyes sprang open and he let out a short yell as he sat up, breathing heavily. Looking out of a window in his room, he got out of bed and walked closely to the window. There, he saw the moon; and it was nearly full that night. It reminded him of her, the Waterbender.
Meanwhile, back with Aang and Katara…
Aang: So you were planning on using the Spirit Oasis water to try and heal Zuko's scar?
Katara: Yeah. And for a moment, I think he would have agreed on it. But before I could do anything, you and Iroh showed up.
Aang: (laughs nervously) Sorry. I guess if we were a bit late…
Katara: That's kind of what I've been thinking about ever since that moment: what if?
Aang: (Thinks for a moment) …Katara, I think… I think there's still good in him.
Katara: What? But he joined with Azula, practically turning on his uncle, the whole world.
Aang: Not quite. When I was with Iroh, he told me how manipulative Azula could be. She might have brainwashed him, thinking the only way to go home is to have me in chains. If we could get Zuko to change his mind, maybe, just maybe, we'll have a much better chance at beating Azula and getting Ba Sing Se back.
Katara: I don't know, Aang. What if he won't listen to us?
Aang: We'll think of something. There's always a chance
As he said that, the sun began to rise, making it mourning. As the sun was rising, the other passengers on Appa were starting to wake up, with Sokka being the first to sit up.
Sokka: (Yawns) Huh, morning already?
Aang: Guys, we've made it. The Earth Kingdom city of Omashu!
Aang points to a series of mountains that look man-made, like castles. This is the city known as Omashu.
Suki: That's great. We're here.
Earth King: Now all we have to do is sneak in and-
Katara: I don't think that's necessary.
Suki: What do you mean?
Katara: Take a look at it. Do you notice something different about the city?
Earth King: Well, I wouldn't know.
Suki: It looks fine to me.
Aang: (Gasp) Of course. No smoke coming from the city, no Scaffolding anywhere near the palace, and to my surprise, no metal walls or the Fire Nation insignia!
It was true. On Aang, Katara and Sokka's last Visit to Omashu, it was in complete control of the Fire Nation. As Aang descried; there were smoke coming from the city, Scaffolding near the palace in order to construct a statue of Fire Lord Ozai, metal walls surrounding the city and the Fire Nation insignia of a calligraphy flame in the front of it. But looking at it now, you wouldn't believe that the Fire Nation so much as touched Omashu.
Sokka: What is the Deal? It looks like when we first visited the place.
Toph: Maybe it's a trap by the Fire Nation. You know, to lure people to a false sense of security.
Aang: I don't think that's the case. I think… (Thinks for a moment) Forget sneaking in, we're going through the front door.
Sokka and Katara: WHAT?!
Katara: Aang, wait, think about this for a minute-
Aang: (interrupts) Already did. Appa, Yip-Yip!
Appa follows Aang's orders and flies strait ahead into the center of the city. The others on Appa were screaming in fear at what Aang was doing, they all braced themselves, waiting for any and all attack they would get from the Fire Nation solders taking control there. When they got closer to the city, they were waiting. When they passed the protecting wall, they waited. When they were close to city's palace, they waited. It was then, when they made it to the palace, they realized…
Sokka: Hey, no one's attacking us.
Toph: But why?
Aang: I'll show you why.
At that second, Aang jumped off of Appa and rushed into the palace, using his Airbending to give him a boost. The others quickly followed his lead as fast as they could. Aang continues his way into the palace, passing by the guards before they could react. Noticing that they were Earth Kingdom guards made his conclusion more the truthful. When he finally made it to the center chamber, he was met with the surprise he expected: the room he was in is the throne room, and sitting in the throne is an old man with white hair, one eye different from the other, and in royal green robes with a hat having the Earth Kingdom symbol and two very big feathers on it. Aang smiled as he recognized the man: his old friend, Bumi, the King of Omashu.
Bumi: (laughs and snorts) Aang, my friend. What are you doing here?
Aang: Bumi! You're okay!
Aang runs up to him, using his Airbending, and tackles him in a hug.
Bumi: Whoa. Easy Aang, these old bones aren't what they use to be.
Aang: (laughs) I'm just glad you're okay. I missed you.
Bumi: Yes, me too. (Returns hug)
Sokka, Katara and the others finally made it to the throne room, with guards following them as well.
Sokka: Aang. What was that all about- (sees Bumi) Hey, guys look.
Katara: (Gasp) King Bumi?
Bumi: (Gets up, laughing and snorts) In the flesh. It is so good to see you Sokka, Katara, Momo. I see you added a few new members of your little team.
Suki: Greetings your majesty. I am Suki of Kyoshi Island, leader of the Kyoshi Warriors.
Bumi: Well, it's a pleasure to meet you Suki.
Earth King: It's a pleasure to meet you as well; I am the Earth King of Ba Sing Se. And this is my pet bear; Bosco.
He gestures to the bear and he growls happily.
Bumi: Well, I was wondering if I'd ever see you. You never answered my messengers.
Earth King: Well… I never got any. Long story.
Bumi: I'll hear it later. (To Toph) And who might this little girl be?
Toph: The name's Toph, I'm the most powerful Earthbender in the world.
Bumi: (Laughs) Is that so? That's quite a statement, being that I'm a very powerful Earthbender myself.
Toph: Can you bend metal?
Bumi: Metal? (Laughs) My goodness, that's amazing, you can bend metal. How long?
Toph: Well… I kinda started yesterday.
Bumi: Well, congratulations. There are only a few selected Earthbenders who can actually bend metal.
Bumi then takes a spoon that was near him, holds it up, and the spoon begins to move on its own.
Bumi: … Me included. (Laughs and snorts)
Katara: … Wow… is that how you escaped?
Sokka: Yeah, what happened? Last we were here; this place was under control of the Fire Nation.
Bumi: Well, I said I was waiting for the right moment to strike, and I did.
Sokka: So where is the Fire Nation governor? Where are the guards, and all the other Fire Nation guys?
Bumi: Oh, those guys? Most of them high-tailed it out of here, but we managed to capture a few of them, including the governor.
Toph: That's good. We need Fire Nation duds, and fast?
Bumi: Really? What ever for?
It has been a good hour and a half of explaining the situation to Bumi, as well as the plan they made to gain Ba Sing Se back.
Bumi: Well, I see that you guys really had quite an adventure. Well, I'd be glad to help you with your mission to get back Ba Sing Se.
Aang: Thank you for your help, Bumi.
Bumi: Aw, think nothing of it. I know you'd do the same for me. (Laughs and snorts) Now, I think the best thing you can do for now is rest your little heads, you've had a long, hard trip. I'll have my tailors get measurements for your Fire Nation disguises and they'll be ready before you know it. So get some rest, all of you, you've a big journey ahead of you.
Katara: Thank you again, King Bumi.
They all bowed and turned to leave the throne room.
Katara: I don't know about the rest of you guys, but I'm going to get some sleep. (To a guard) could you escort me to a room with a bed?
Guard: Sure miss. Right this way.
The guard takes Katara's hand and leads her too one of the rooms.
Aang: Sleep tight, Katara.
The guard leads Katara into one of the chambers. The guard opened the entrance and led Katara in.
Guard: Here you go miss. Would you like anything else?
Katara: No, that's all. Wake me when King Bumi is ready for us.
Guard: Of course, miss.
The guard turns back, closing the door behind him. As soon as the door was closed; Katara when to the bed and practically fell on top of it. Being so tired from everything that happened, Katara fell asleep instantly. But her sleep would not be so peaceful soon, because as she slept, she was having an unusual dream.
We now see Katara standing in a dark and foggy area. She looks around, trying to figure where she was. It was then she saw Aang appear far away from her. She sees him and begins to walk towards him. But Aang points behind her and she turns to see Azula standing there, right on the opposite of where Aang was. Two more figures appeared next to Azula on both her right and left side; Mai and Ty-Lee. She turns back to Aang and appearing next to his right and left were Sokka and Toph, with Momo on her shoulder. Suki appeared next, followed by the Earth King, then Bumi, and finally, Iroh appeared last. They were all standing around in a circle, containing Katara. She was about to say something, but then she sensed another presents. She turns around and sees Zuko standing there, wearing the tattered Earth Kingdom clothes from before, and in a fighting stance. Katara faces him, and opening her water skin, poured the contends out and started to bend it in a whip-like position. They just stood there, circling one another as everyone watched, waiting for the other to strike first. Zuko made the first move; widening his knees, he shoots out a stream of flames at Katara, and she bended the water whip into a solid circle, crystallizing it into ice, she makes a shield to deflect the fire. The ice shield then melts and becomes a water whip, and Katara strikes him. Zuko intercepts by circling his arms, creating a flame shield, deflecting the attack. Zuko, getting to the offensive, moves his right arm in a slender motion and from his hands come a fire whip. Zuko starts to strike with the whip, but Katara intercepts with her water whip, both whips hitting each other, canceling each others' attack. Zuko takes his left arm, moves it the same way he did the right, and creates another fire whip. Zuko strikes with the first whip, blocking Katara's, and then strikes with the second one. Katara sees the second one coming and she spins on her toes, causing her water whip to circle her, blocking the second fire whip. Katara had to think fast, with two fire whips at his disposal, Zuko has an advantage. She had two choices: either breaker her single whip in two and use two shorter whips, or try one of the hardest Waterbending moves to pull off. She knew with two short whips, she'd be in an even more disadvantage, so she when for the later. Closing her eyes and taking a big breath, she concentrates, holding out her left hand, a blue mist starts to appear on her hand, it almost looked like the mist was developing from the fog. Breathing very heavily, the blue mist starts to grow and get bigger until finally, there was another water whip in her hand. She had just condensed the moisture and water in the fog and air into a solid water whip. Now, using her second water whip, Katara starts to strike back, with Zuko blocking with his fire whips. The barrage of whips when on and on, and for awhile, it seemed to have been endless. That is until something odd happened: when both fire and water whips came together, they got tided up in a knot, as if they were real leather whips. Katara was confused, and from the looks of it, so was Zuko, they then began to pull on the whips, trying to get them free, and Zuko seemed to have pulled too hard, because Katara was being pulled towards him really quickly. Katara landed right in front of Zuko, about an inch or two from touching, Katara lost control of the water and it splashed on the floor and Zuko's fire whips were extinguished, also, Aang, Azula and the others disappeared as well, it was just Katara and Zuko. Katara started to get nervous, wondering what Zuko would do. Zuko's face held some anger, but it was changed, suddenly, to sorrow.
Zuko: (echoing) … I'm sorry…
Katara gasped softly at this, he heard him say it before when she told him about her mother, but this "I'm sorry" seemed to have meant something else. His eyes… his amber eyes, though his left eye was hard to see due to the scar, she saw sadness and struggle in them. Katara looked deeply into his eyes, almost hypnotized by them, she could swear, she was feeling his struggle, his pain, his… regrets, not to mention her heart was beating like crazy. She started to move closer to Zuko's face, looking at only his eyes. Zuko eyes blinked, curious on what she was doing, he started moving closer to her himself. They moved closer… and closer… … and closer, until they stopped; their faces only centimeters apart. Katara could feel his breath on her lips, and vice versa. Suddenly Katara, not realizing what she was doing, filled up the remaining centimeters of closeness between herself and Zuko and kissed his lips. At first, her eyes widened, wondering why she was doing this, Zuko's eyes were widen in shock as well, but he soon lowered his eyes and began to return the kiss, giving it more passion then before. Katara's worries turned into frightening shock, feeling Zuko putting more feeling into the kiss, it felt as if lightning was coursing though her body as her heart beat went as fast as Aang when using his Airbending. Soon, she began to ignore those worry and negative thoughts as she closed her eyes slowly, letting the feeling take over and return Zuko's gusto in the kiss by giving full force onto him. Zuko wrapped his arms around her waist and Katara wrapped hers around his neck. They stood there, kissing passionately for what felt like hours until the need for air was too great, they broke apart, trying to catch their breaths. Katara put a hand to her chest, trying to calm her heart down, she saw Zuko inhaled, and when he exhaled, he blew steam from his mouth.
Katara: Yeah… wow…
Once they caught their breath, Katara made the first move, and they were at it again, only the kissing seemed to be even more passionate, if that were possible. Steam started to build up around their bodies and Katara stopped, but only to claw on the tattered shirt he wore, tearing it off before going back to Zuko's lips.
The scene vanished before her eyes and Katara jerked awake. Her eyes sprang open and she let out a short yell as she sat up, breathing heavily.
Katara: Whoa… Where did that come from?
Suddenly, the door to her room opened. She screams a short yell and turns to the door, seeing that the same guard from before was there.
Guard: Um… miss Katara? Are you alright? I heard a yell before coming here.
Katara: It's okay, you just startled me.
Guard: Oh. Well, his majesty is ready for you and your friends.
Katara: How long have I been asleep?
Guard: Four hours. He wants to see you in the royal fitting cambers.
Katara: Oh, okay. I'll be right there.
Guard: Do you need an escort?
Katara: Um… sure, just give me a moment.
The guard nodded and closed the door.
Katara: (to herself) Okay, that was so weird. One minute I'm fighting Zuko, the next I'm… I'm kissing him and feeling him up?! WHAT GIVES?! (Takes a breather) Okay, okay, I have to stay calm. I can't let the others know about this, especially Aang and Sokka. (Inhales, then exhales) Okay, I'm ready to go.
Katara leaves the room and follows the guard. On the way, they pass Toph.
Toph: Hey, Sugar Queen.
Katara: Oh, hey Toph. You heard that Bumi's waiting for us?
Toph: Yeah, I'm on the way.
Katara: Great. Why don't we walk together?
Toph: Eh. Whatever floats your boat, sweetness.
Katara: Great. (To the guard) Thanks, but I've got it from here.
Guard: No problem. Have a nice day. (Leaves)
Katara: (To Toph) Let's get going, I don't want to be late.
Toph: Okay. (Starts to walk) You know, you were asleep for quite a while.
Katara: (starts to get nervous) oh, really? (Thinking) Don't blow it, Katara. Remember, she can sense your heartbeat. She'll know that you're nervous.
Toph: Yeah. Sokka was there earlier and couldn't pry you out.
Katara: Well, I have been known to be a heavy sleeper. (Laughs nervously)
Toph: So… (Long pause) did you have any good dreams-
Katara: (Cracks) I WASN'T FANTASIZING ABOUT ZUKO!
She cringes right there and then as Toph froze in mid step. It started to get very quiet.
Toph: Uh… (Long pause) Wow…That... That just came out of nowhere, didn't it? Wasn't expecting that.
Katara: Toph, please! Please! You can't tell anyone else!
Toph: Relax, Katara, it's couldn't have been that bad
Katara: I was practically on top of him!
Toph: … Wow, even I could see that, and I'm blind. Don't worry, Sweetness, I'll keep you're little secret. But just to let you know, I am gonna hold this over you for the rest of your life, right?
Katara: Grrr… Fine!
Toph: (laugh) These next few days are probably gonna be the best I've ever lived.
The scene now changes to King Bumi's royal fitting chambers; it's basically a large room with smaller rooms and mirrors all around. Aang, Sokka, Katara and the others were there, as per instructed.
Bumi: Well, now that everyone his here, I want to give each of you a present. Guards?
The guards gave each one of the gang a large box.
Aang: Ooh… what is it?
Bumi: (laughs) Well, you got to open it to find out.
Aang starts to tear the box open and inside were red clothing; robes, pants, all with the Fire Nation insignia.
Aang: Hey, our Fire Nation disguises.
Suki: He gave them to us in boxes?
Sokka: Eh. What do you expect, the guy's a nut.
Bumi: I prefer to be called "mad genius." Well, go ahead, try them on.
A few minutes later, the gang was all dressed as Fire Nation: Sokka was in royal red clothing, passing off as a governor and Suki dress as one too, without her make-up. Toph was dressed similar robes, only children's size. And Katara, the Earth King and Aang were in guard's uniforms, with the skull masks to hide their faces (Aang had to be on stilts to make him look taller).
Aang: (muffles through mask, then takes it of) You can't talk in these things.
Bumi: Perfect! You now look like Fire Nation royalty.
Sokka: Not bad. (Looks into mirror) though our faces might give us away.
Toph: Yeah, I may not know what I look like, but when Azula see these blind eyes, she's gonna know it's us.
Katara: (takes off mask) Yeah, and that goes for Sokka and Suki's eyes, they're both blue, most Fire Nation people have brown or amber eyes.
Bumi: That's why I had my royal physician, Dr. Hue, fix these.
One of the guards gives a small box to Sokka, Suki and Toph. Sokka opens it and sees inside what look like a pair of amber eyes.
Bumi: These are disposables, transparent eye covers. They go directly onto your eyes and it makes them look different. I call it an eye mask.
Sokka: (holds one up) … does it hurt?
Bumi: Well, he says they might irritate a bit, but other then that, nothing. You'll be able to see as if nothing was there.
Suki: (confused) Uh… how are we gonna put these on?
Bumi: I'll have him and his nurses help you. And then after words, I'll have my royal barbers do something about your hair.
Bumi: Well, you have to look Fire Nation. What's a Fire Nation man or woman without a topknot in their hair? Guards, take Mister Sokka, Miss Suki and Miss Bei Fong to Dr. Hue's office. And when they are done with him, take them to my four barbers to fix their hair.
Sokka: Uh… suddenly, I don't feel so good about this.
Bumi: Don't worry, Sokka. Baanii, Jou, Honda, and Hana-saki are the best barbers in the entire Earth Kingdom. Not to mention the best singing group I've ever heard (laughs and snorts).
About an hour passed and Sokka, Suki and Toph were finished with the last final touches, their faces looking more Fire Nation. Sokka's eyes were amber colored and his usual warriors wolf's tail replaced with a topknot having the Fire Nation insignia on it. Suki's eye were more of a brown color, and her hair tide back, like Katara's, only she didn't have any hair loops like Katara, and also, a Fire Nation topknot. And lastly, Toph's eyes were brown colored, making it hard to believe she was blind, and her hair trailed long behind her back with a smaller Fire Nation topknot.
Bumi: Ooh… I better get the guards; the Fire Nation invaded my palace (laughs and snorts).
Sokka: (feels topknot, sighs) It's just isn't the same. I've had my wolf's tail since… well, ever.
Earth King: (though mask) Don't worry, Sokka. I'm sure you'll be able to fix it later.
Katara: It's only temporary, Sokka. Just until we get Azula to trust us so we can take her down.
Sokka: Okay, okay, I get it. This is my plan, remember?
Toph: Alright, don't get your hair in a knot. Whoops, too late. (Laughs)
Katara: Sokka, ignore her. We still need more details about the plan.
Sokka: Right. Okay, here is how it's gonna go: We arrive in Ba Sing Se, telling that we're Fire Nation royalty. My name is Haiku, governor for the Fire Nation coming to be the governor of Ba Sing Se. Suki, you're name will be Lady Aura, my future wife to be. And-
Suki: Hold it. "Future wife to be"?
Sokka: (Gulps, then blushes) Well… I though that Azula thinks we're engaged, it might the story sound convincing. (Laughs nervously)
Suki: Okay, Sokka, I'll play along. (Smiles) Who knows, I might even enjoy it.
Sokka: (laughs nervously, voice cracks) Uh, yeah, okay… (Clears throat) Uh…anyway, Toph, you're name will be Arya, my little cousin who I've been asked, by my aunt and uncle, to look after.
Toph: (Sarcastically) Great. This will be just like home.
Aang: Well what are we waiting for? (Puts mask back on) the faster we get to Ba Sing Se, the faster we can take it back.
The scene now changes to outside of Omashu. Bumi has given Aang a new saddle for Appa and as soon as they were ready, the gang was off into the air and on their way to Ba Sing Se. Bumi and the other citizens of Omashu were waving goodbye.
Bumi: Good luck, Aang. I believe this will be the toughest challenge you'll ever face.
We now return back to Ba Sing Se, it is now dusk. The Dai Li, under Azula's orders, kept the public unaware of her being in complete control. She insisted she waited until the right moment to tell the public about their new ruler. We now cut to inside the places, in the royal chambers, where Azula, Ty-Lee and Zuko were in. they just heard news that Mai has returned to the city with a messenger bird. From the palace doors comes Mai with her Dai Li escorts, and on her left shoulder was a beautiful eagle with brown feathers on its wings and back, white feathers on its stomach, and a tube case for messages.
Mai: I had to go through two towns and five bird breeders to get this. It's a messenger eagle, the shopkeeper calls her Spirit.
Ty-Lee: (coos) Aww… she's so beautiful.
Azula: Yes. Congratulations, Mai. I'll handle the eagle for now.
Mai: (Sighs) Okay.
She signals the eagle with a few short whistles and Spirit flies over to Azula, perched on the arm rest of the throne.
Mai: If you need me Azula, I'll be in my room.
She bows and leaves the throne room.
Azula: Excellent. Now that we have a messenger bird, I can finally tell father that Ba Sing Se is ours and that the Earth Kingdom has finally fallen. Dai Li.
One of the Dai Li Agents walks up to Azula.
Dai Li #3: Yes, you're highness?
Azula: Can you take dictation?
Dai Li: But of course.
Azula: I want you to write a message as I tell it to you.
Dai Li: I'll be right back with some parchment and a calligraphy pen, you're highness.
He bows and rushes off to find what he needs.
Azula: The rest of you, go about with the rest of your duties.
The rest of the Dai Li escorts bowed and left the throne room.
Azula: Ah, I love having this kind of power. I'll be very use to it once I'm the new Fire Lord.
Zuko: Um… Azula, you realized that I would be next in line to be Fire Lord once father is passed, right?
Azula: What? Oh… oh, right, of course dear brother. I guess I was getting ahead of myself.
Just then, another Dai Li Agent rushed his way into the center of the throne room.
Dai Li #4: You're highness; there is a governor Haiku of the Fire Nation here to see you.
Azula: (Pauses)… I'm sorry, what was that?
Dai Li #4: Later this evening, a Fire Nation governor named Haiku, along with his wife to be, Lady Aura and the governor's cousin, Arya arrived here with three Fire Nation solders, wishing to see you, princess Azula.
Azula took all this information in, thinking it over in her head.
Azula: Hmm… send them in, at once.
The Dai Li Agent bows, nods and rushes out of the room.
Azula: "Fire Governor Haiku." Strange, I know all the governors and I've never met anyone called Haiku.
Ty-Lee: Maybe it's a new governor.
Just as she said that, the throne room doors open, and entering the room is a group of Dai Li escorting the Avatar gang in their Fire Nation disguise.
Zuko: Hmm, looks like Ty-Lee was right. It is someone new.
Ty-Lee: Ooh… and he looks cute.
The gang made it to the center and kneeled down to Azula. Sokka then spoke in a different voice, sounding much darker and more serious.
Sokka: It is an honor to finally meet you, princess Azula.
Azula: You must be governor Haiku. Welcome to Ba Sing Se.
Suki: Greetings, your majesty, I am Lady Aura, future husband to Haiku.
Toph: and I am Arya, cousin of Haiku. My mother and father left me with my older cousin so I can learn the ways of royalty in the Fire Nation.
Azula: Well, it's quite a surprise to meet you. You know me of course. On my right is Ty-Lee.
Azula: And to my left is my older brother, Zuko.
Toph: Zuko, as in Prince Zuko? Wasn't he banished from the Fire Nation and deemed a traitor?
Azula: Yes, little one. But he has proven he is all the loyal to the Fire Nation and to our father. He aided me in finally defeating the Avatar and capturing the ture traitor: the Dragon of the West, Former General Iroh.
Suki: The Dragon of the West, a traitor? But he is the loyal brother of the Fire Lord.
Azula: Well, he wasn't very loyal when he aided the Avatar and his friends. He'll be brought home as any traitor would: In chains and waiting for death.
Sokka: Poor Iroh. He was such a good friend.
Azula: You knew him?
Sokka: Uh… not personally, but he was a friend to my parents.
Azula stairs down Sokka, Sokka was hoping, in his mind, that she would buy it. Just then, the Dai Li who Azula asked to help dictate a message came back.
Dai Li #3: Princess, I came as quickly as I… (Trailed off, sees the Avatar's gang) um… is this a bad time?
Azula: Oh, no. Just wait outside. I'll deal with you later.
The Dai Li Agent leaves. Azula turns back to Sokka.
Azula: You know, that does remind me of something: why are you here in Ba Sing Se anyway? How would you know that I've taken control?
Sokka: (Thinking) Uh-oh, I guess we came too early. Think, Sokka, think! (Aloud) Well… didn't you strike the city with a giant drill?
Azula: Yes, but that failed, thanks to the Avatar. I had to think of another way.
Sokka: Well, we never got a message, saying that it failed.
Azula: Hmm… that's true. I never did write to father telling that War Minister Qin's plan failed. I guess you came here, thinking that it was successful.
Sokka: That is correct my princess. And now that were here, I would like to ask you to give me, and my future wife a chance to show our loyalty by asking to be the Fire Nation governor of Ba Sing Se.
Azula: (Smiles) Well, how can I say no to such a well polite young royal, especially if he is to be married? I'll give you a chance. Dai Li, take our guess to one of the master guest rooms.
Sokka: Thank you, your highness. (Bows) You won't regret this.
The others bowed and the Dai Li lead them out of the room and to their guest room.
Zuko: They sure seem like a nice couple.
Azula: Sometimes nice isn't the only way to greatness.
Ty-Lee: Still… that governor was kinda cute. It's too bad he's engaged. Oh well, there's always that Water Tribe boy.
Azula: Water Tribe boy? (Thinks for a moment)… No, it couldn't be. But then again, I wouldn't be surprised.
Just then, Mai came back to the throne room.
Mai: Sorry, I forgot my dagger. (Notices the look on Azula's face) Did I just miss something?
Meanwhile, back with the Avatar's gang…
Sokka: Hey, Dai Li, could you do us a favor?
Dai Li #5: Yes, governor?
Sokka: Can you take us to see the prisoner, Iroh? I wish to give him my regrets.
Dai Li #5: Well, normally, we would be against visiting criminals, for the visitor's protection. But seeing that you're with the fire princess, I think it would be alright.
Sokka: Thank you.
The scene now changes the palaces jail cell. Everywhere you looked, there was metal, sense most of the criminals who are locked up here are Earthbenders, the metal suppressed their bending abilities. We now focus on one jail cell, inside was a old man with grey hair, a beard, and his arms and legs tided down with metal chains and stone cuffs. This is former general Iroh, the Dragon of the West.
Iroh: I do hope I'll get out of here soon. These cuffs are really uncomfortable, and the food here is so ice cold, it's a disgrace.
Suddenly, his door was banging, he turns and sees a Dai Li Agent standing there.
Dai Li #5: Quick talking to yourself, old timer. You've got visitors.
Iroh: Visitor, for me? Well, isn't that nice. Who is it?
Dai Li #5: The future governor of Ba Sing Se, Haiku.
The Dai Li Agent opened the door and entered Sokka.
Sokka: Ah, general Iroh, we meet at last.
Iroh: Do I know you?
Sokka: Sort of. In fact, we've met just yesterday.
Dai Li #5: What? Wait governor, I thought you said you-
Before he could finish, his eyes started to close and he passed out. Suddenly, a struggle was heard and the other Dai Li Agents who were escorting them were knocked unconscious.
Iroh: What in the name of Agni?
Sokka: Iroh, it's me, Sokka. We're here to rescue you.
Iroh: Hmm… you look different from before.
Sokka: What? (Realizes) Oh right, the eye masks.
Sokka holds his left eye open and forces the eye mask off, and he does the same with his right.
Iroh: Well I'll be.
The others enter the cell as well and Toph stood in front of Iroh.
Toph: Hold still, old timer, this is tricky.
Toph takes the metal cuff on his arm and bends it open; she does the same with his legs, and then used her Earthbending to shatter the stones.
Iroh: Thanks my young friend, my legs were starting to fall asleep.
Katara: (Through mask) Come on, if we're gonna take out Azula; we have to do it now while her guard is down.
Suki: But first, let's get these guys in here.
Toph: Leave that to me.
Toph got into a stance and slammed her foot on the ground, causing the metal to curve under the knocked out Dai Li, the metal curves into a slide, sending the Dai Li into the cell. The gang, plus Iroh, leaves the cell and Toph closes it, bending off the knob, and trapping them in.
Aang: (Through mask) Wow, Toph how did you get better with your Metalbending?
Toph: (Blushing) Well, I was sparing a bit with Bumi back in Omashu.
Aang: (laughs) Looks like the greatest Earthbender needed a few lesson.
Toph: Shut it, twinkle toes. Now let's go, we got a princess's ass to kick.
We now return attention back to princess Azula, dictating a message to the Dai Li Agent who was copying each word.
Azula: … "And so, dear father, Thanks to Mai, Ty-lee, the Dai Li, and of course, Zuko, We were able to take down Ba Sing Se and the entire Earth Kingdom. I look forward to your visit. Your daughter; Princess Azula." Now, read that back to me.
Dai Li #3: Yes your highness. "My dearest father"-
Suddenly, the throne room doors blast open, sending the door flying towards the Dai Li Agent. The solder guarded himself with his arms as the door collided with him, turning it into gravel thanks to his Earthbending. Coming through the door was the gang. Aang jumped off, ridding his disguise and send an air blast at the Dai Li Agent, shooting him up against the wall.
Aang: Alright, Azula, this ends now!
Azula: The Avatar!
Zuko: He's alive!
Katara: (Taking off mask and helmet) Surrender, Azula! We've got you out-numbered!
Azula: HA! Do you?
Suddenly, from the ceiling of the room, several Dai Li Agents appeared and stood in a fighting stance.
Sokka: Well, so much for out-numbering her.
Toph: Aang and I will take care of the Dai Li, the rest of you worry about the princess and her cronies.
Aang and Toph both took a fighting stance and the battle began. Several Dai Li shot their stone gloves at the gang and Toph and Aang closed their hands, shattering the stone gloves. Both Aang and Toph lift their lefts arms, forcing a bolder from the ground, and using their right arms to shoot it, in synchronized movements. They both lifted pillars with them on top and started to rise up, once they stopped rising, they jumped off, spinning around the pillars using their left arms, they dug into the pillars and shot stone after stone they dug out in all directions. Meanwhile Azula jumped of the throne and was shooting blue flames from her fingertips all around her. When she stopped, Suki jumped in front of her.
Suki: Hi, bitch, remember me?
Suki then pulls out her metal fan, hiding under her sleeve, opening it and slashes across Azula's chest. Azula jumped out, but the slash from the blade was too fast and it cut through her clothes, and it cut her stomach a little.
Azula: Ah... The Kyoshi warrior. I though I left you for dead.
Suki: I'm still kicking. And now it's payback time for killing my warriors!
Suki reveals another fan and performs a spinning strike on Azula, but she jumps out of the way. Azula sends off a blue flame but Suki bats it away with her fan. Unfortunately, the fire was too hot and it singed the fan, making a hole, Suki throws it away and moves her left arm, un-stealth-ing a round shield. Azula took another fighting stance, but was derailed when a boomerang hit her wrist. She holds it in pain as she see the boomerang return to its owner; Sokka. Sokka removes his topknot, freeing his hair and drawing his machete,
Sokka: You want her; you'll have to go through me first.
Azula: It's your funeral.
Meanwhile, Katara was fending off a few Dai Li agents, as well as Mai's flying daggers using the water in her skin. She took down three Dai Li agents and deflected Mai's daggers. Mai was about to send a new dagger at her when Zuko intervened.
Zuko: Mai, help the other Dai Li agents, this one is mine.
Mai takes off and Zuko widens his stance, shooting a stream of flames at Katara, and she bended the water whip into a solid circle, crystallizing it into ice, she makes a shield to deflect the fire. The ice shield then melts and becomes a water whip, and Katara strikes him. Zuko intercepts by circling his arms, creating a flame shield, deflecting the attack. Zuko, getting to the offensive, moves his right arm in a slender motion and from his hands come a fire whip. Zuko starts to strike with the whip, but Katara intercepts with her water whip, both whips hitting each other, canceling each others' attack. Zuko takes his left arm, moves it the same way he did the right, and creates another fire whip. Zuko strikes with the first whip, blocking Katara's, and then strikes with the second one. Katara sees the second one coming and she spins on her toes, causing her water whip to circle her, blocking the second fire whip. Zuko has an advantage with both whips and katara knew this. she noticed that this was simmilar to her dream and realized that she needed another water whip, she though "Hey, it worked in the dream." Closing her eyes and taking a big breath, she concentrates, holding out her left hand, a blue mist starts to appear on her hand. Breathing very heavily, the blue mist starts to grow and get bigger until finally, there was another water whip in her hand, she finally and actually performed the trick of condensing the water in the air. Now, using her second water whip, Katara starts to strike back, with Zuko blocking with his fire whips.
Katara: Weird, this is happening just like in my dream.
Zuko was about to attack again, but a flame hit the side of his stomach and it caused him to lose both fire whips. He turns to see that it was Iroh who attacked him.
Iroh: Katara, help the others.
She left to attack more Dai Li while Zuko fought his uncle. The Earth King, still in his disguise, was trying to fight, but was failing quickly. Ty-Lee came from behind, and hitting his back with a few jabs, paralyzed his entire body. He fell and his mask fell off.
Earth King: I can't move!
Aang: Okay, it's time for back up.
Going through his shirt, he pulls out a whistle shaped like Appa. He blows into it and a high pitched sound was heard. A few minutes later, Appa, with Momo and the Earth King's bear, Bosco riding on his back, was charging towards the throne room. Momo flew off and was flying to the Dai Li agents; landing on their heads, blinding them, making them crash into another. Bosco was clawing and mauling at a few of them and Appa, using his own Airbending, blew a whole mess of Dai Li to the wall, instantly knocking some of the out. The Dai Li fought back against the animal attack: One used his stone glove, trapping Momo. Another set was trapping Bosco's paws and jaw down on the ground. And a whole mess of them trapped Appa in a large stone box they created.
Aang was distracted, giving the Dai Li a chance to capture him, they un-stealth their metal hand cuffs and trapped Aang's arms and legs. Azula rushed to him and put a flaming finger on his neck.
Azula: This fight is over! I suggest you back down now or the Avatar gets it.
Everyone sees Azula with Aang in her grasp and they froze.
Azula: Did you really think you could take me on? I am a master Firebender; I'm one of the selected few who can create lightning. I'm deadly, persist, and intelligent. You're little disguises didn't fool me for a second, you're plan is a failure. My plan, on the other hand, is genius. With my brother, Zuko, on my side, nothing will stop me from taking you all in chains to the Fire Nation.
As she was saying this, she kept circling around the room, focusing on each and every person.
Azula: What did you expect? I'm a Fire Nation princess; you're all nothing but a bunch of talent-less peasants who all ran out of luck.
Zuko: Azula, I'm sorry to interrupt you, but there seems to be a problem with the plans.
Azula heard Zuko from behind but didn't turn around to face him.
Azula: (slightly angry) Ohh? And what would that be?
Azula didn't hear an answer, but she did hear flames being created. Then her back started to get a burning sensation and she screamed in pain. Letting go of Aang, she held onto her back in pain as she fell on her face. When she fell, we see Zuko standing behind her with his fist out and smoking.
Zuko: I was never on your side.
Azula turned to Zuko with a surprised look that turned angry. Toph sensed this and moved her arms in a circle fashion, creating bands of rock, trapping Azula on the ground. With Azula trapped and unable to move or speak, do to the pain, the Dai Li stood still. Mai began to attack, but Katara splashed her with all the water she had, then, she inhales and breaths out a breath of mist, crystallizing the water, turning into ice and trapping her. Ty-Lee began doing jumps and cartwheels, dodging every attack that came at her.
Toph: She's too fast, at this rate, we'll tire ourselves out.
Sokka: We've got to get her to stand still, but how can we… (Thinks for a moment, then to Suki) Suki, don't hate me for this.
Sokka then walks up, standing right in the middle.
Katara: Sokka what are you doing? She's going to get you.
True to her words, Ty-Lee jumped in front of Sokka.
Ty-Lee: (Giggles) Hi there, cutie.
Sokka: (Suave tone) Hello yourself.
Then Sokka did something that shocked everyone there; he grabed her and kissed her right on the lips, for six whole seconds, when he stopped and lets her go, Ty-Lee was frozen in place for a moment. Then she gave a lovesick smile and sigh, right before falling on her back, fainting. Toph circled her arms and trapped her like Azula. Everyone stared and Suki's face was red with jealousy.
Aang: I've heard of being a lady killer, but that was ridiculous.
Suki: (Angry) What was that all about?
Sokka: (nervous) She… kinda has this crush on me and well… you know me, the idea guy. (Laughs nervous)
Suki: Well, you better not have an idea like that again.
Sokka holds his hands out in front of him, sheilding himself of what Suki might do. But to his surprise, she just grabbed his hands and pulled him closer to her.
Suki: Because those lips belong to me.
Suki kisses him and Sokka was surprised, but retuned it quickly.
Sokka: (Breaks kiss) Uh… no problem.
Katara: How does he do that?
Katara: Get girls to like him? Forget it; we've still got one Fire Nation enemy to take care of.
She turns to Zuko and he sees what she's thinking about. She condenced from the air another water whip and it turns into an ice dagger.
Katara: Allow me to do the job.
Katara began her attack when Iroh stood in front of her, stopping her from attacking.
Iroh: No miss Katara, allow me.
Iroh stares daggers at Zuko. But then, to everyone's suprise, he laughs heartily.
Iroh: (laughs) To congratulate him!
Iroh: (Hugs Zuko) Well done, nephew. Azula never suspected a thing.
Zuko: I couldn't have done it without you, uncle.
Azula: WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THIS?!
Iroh: Well, Azula, I-
Zuko: (Interrupts) Allow me, uncle. (To Azula) You see, Azula, when you spoke to me about joining you and you needing me, I didn't believe it for a second. If there was anything I knew about you is this: you always lie, and you saying you needed me was no different. So when you left us alone, uncle and I though of a plan.
Azula: You mean you joining by my side, Fighting with me against the Avatar, Even attacking and fighting uncle Iroh…Was all just an act?
Azula: Well, I must say, for a traitorous worm, that was very underhanded.
Zuko: I'm no traitor, Azula. If any one is a traitor is you and father. You would use and destroy the lives of innocents, just to take control. There's no honor in that.
Azula: Well, that's tough talk coming from the boy who lost his honor three years ago.
Zuko: Well, if having honor means sacrificing innocent people, then I don't want it. I make my own honor.
Iroh: I've been waiting three years for you to say that.
Aang: But wait. If you guys planned this whole double-cross, why didn't you tell us?
Zuko: Well, Avatar, I did sort of said I have changed to your Waterbender, but besides that, we had to keep it a secret to make it look convincing. Although, uncle, you didn't have to make it look that convincing.
He lifts up his armored shirt, revealing the burn mark Iroh gave him.
Iroh: (laughs in embarrassment) What can I say nephew? I was trying to miss.
Iroh starts to laugh and Zuko begins to laugh as well.
Azula: Go ahead, laugh you little heads off. I swear when I get out of this I'll-
Azula didn't finish, due to the fact that her mouth was covered in a stone-gag.
Toph: That aught to shut her up.
He starts to laugh again, but stops. He inhales sharply, due to the pain on his side.
Katara: I'll take care of that.
Katara starts to run towards Zuko, her ice dagger melting and consuming her hand.
Sokka: Katara, what are you-?
Katara: It's alright, Sokka. (To Zuko) May I?
Zuko nods and Katara places her water filled hand over the burn mark, the water begins to glow and the wound starts to disappear.
Zuko: So… I guess that offer with the Oasis Water is long gone?
Katara: … Yeah, I kinda used it to bring Aang back.
The water kept glowing until it stopped. It slid off of Katara's hand and Zuko's side, leaving the area clean.
Zuko: … That's amazing.
Katara: (Blushes) Oh… thank you.
Toph: Oh jeeze. Get a room, you two!
Katara: (Blushes deeper) Toph!
Toph: Hey, you brought this on yourself, sugar queen.
It took a few hours, but everything was now in order: The Dai Li along with Long Feng, now to never be trusted, were hereby banished from Ba Sing Se, never to return. The Earth King and his five generals returned to power in control of Ba Sing Se, and now continued with their plan to evade the Fire Nation on the day of the solar eclipse. Azula, Mai and Ty-Lee were ejected from Ba Sing Se, literally, thanks to Aang and Toph, but the messenger eagle, spirit, stayed with the gang, Aang decided on keeping her as a pet. Suki would stay with the gang to help them defeat the Fire Lord and Sokka didn't mind one bit. And Iroh and Zuko, given another chance by Aang, have decided to aid the Avatar and his friends by teaching him Firebending. It was later that night, and everyone was sleeping in the palace walls, the Earth King allowed Aang and his friends to stay in the palace for the duration of their stay in Ba Sing Se. Everyone was fast asleep, except Zuko, who was wide awake, standing outside and looking at the moon, which was full tonight. Zuko was staring off into the moon when he heard a noise.
Zuko: (Not turning around) I know you're behind there.
A figure came to him and we see that it's Katara.
Katara: Nothing escapes you much, huh?
Zuko: You can say that.
Katara: (walks up to him) So, what are you thinking of?
Zuko: I guess… the future.
Katara: Well, don't worry about it. When Aang defeats the Fire Lord, there will finally be peace.
Zuko: Not as easy as its sounds. I doubt anyone back home would ever want a Fire Lord who aided the Avatar.
Katara: That's where you're wrong. I bet a lot of people in the Fire Nation want peace just as badly as the rest of the world, you're uncle included. He'll be there to help and we'll be there too.
Zuko: What makes you think they'll want me?
Katara: Everyone deserves a second chance. You do too.
Zuko looks up again, placing both his hands on the railings outside, taking in what she said. After a minute of mulling over, he turns back to Katara with a small smile.
Zuko: Thank you, Katara.
Katara: … It's what I do.
Katara, without noticing, also put her hands on the railings, her right hand landing on his left hand. Both realized this they turned to look at it, then to each other.
Katara: Uh… sorry.
Zuko: Yeah, I…
Katara: I just…
They were quiet for a long time, but then Zuko broke the silence.
Zuko: … I'm sorry.
Katara: (Surprised) What?
Zuko: I'm sorry… for deceiving you.
Katara: It's okay. You told us you had to, just to trick Azula.
Zuko: Yes, but it looked like I hurt you the most, because you wanted to help me. And for that, I'm sorry.
Katara looked deeply into Zuko's eyes. She saw the same thing in Zuko's eyes as the Zuko did in her dream. She now realized why in the dream he was sorry; for hurting her when she got hurt by him, emotionally. Katara almost had no control over herself as she reached for his face, surprising him. He was about to say something when he felt her caress his scar with her fingers.
Katara: It still hurts, doesn't it? Not physically, but emotionally.
Zuko just nodded in agreement. Katara, without realizing what she was doing, pulled him closer to her and brought her lips to his scar, gently kissing it, kissing all around his scar. She came to his ear and whispered before she kissed it…
Katara: I'll make it better.
She moves her head back to face Zuko, and she saw surprise in his eyes, and to be honest, she was suprised herself. Without thinking, Zuko moved his face closer to hers; closing his eyes, he kisses her lips gently. Katara's eyes shot open and she felt the same feeling as she did in her dream: Excitement, passion, and love. Katara kissed back, with a bit more force and Zuko repeated, giving more passion to it as before. Katara moved her arms around his neck, putting her fingers through his hair, and Zuko's arms when around her waist, holding her tighly as if he was going to lose her. They stood there, kissing passionately for what felt like hours until the need for air was too great. They broke apart, trying to catch their breaths. Katara put a hand to her chest, trying to calm her heart down, she saw Zuko inhaled, and when he exhaled, he blew steam from his mouth.
Zuko: Wow…That was... wow...
Katara: Yeah… wow…
Katara though about what happened. This happened in the dream as well. So far the events that happened during the fight to control Ba Sing Se performed a simmilarity to the dream she had. That would mean that she would, as she believes might happen, go all the way with Zuko. But she was not ready for that... At lease... Not yet.
Katara: I… I'd better get to bed. I'm... really tired all of a sudden.
Zuko: … Yes. We should turn in.
Katara and Zuko turned in opposite directions. Before she when back in, she turned slightly back.
Katara: Hey, Zuko.
Zuko: (turns back) Yes?
Katara: Thank you…for everything. (Smiles) And I mean everything.
She turned back and went inside. Zuko smirked slightly as he came inside as well. But both were unaware of a figure watching them, and then disappear in a quick swift.
End of chapter one
Well, what do you think of my first Avatar Fic? I had a good time writing it. To my old readers, don't think I have given up on my "Team World" Saga, I just had to write this first. Another chapter will be coming, but not for a while. Read and Review, and a Merry Christmas