Book: 4 New Beginnings

I don't own Avatar: The Last Airbender *tears flow at the realization*

AN: This is based 2 months spanning to I don't know how long, after Aang defeats Ozai. I don't know how long this will be but hopefully I can keep it going if you guys like it! Cannon couples of course, Toph will have a relationship a year or two in and Azula and Ty Lee will show up. I don't do mushy relationships, but possibly later on. (My chapters are long, I may need to split them in half because of it, but, oh well, more avatar goodness right?) For future reference; I will refer to the group as 'Gaang". OH two more things before we start; tell me if names are spelled wrong, I did my best but sometimes I slip up! The next is my story is similar to another I found on here. It doesn't have the exact same plot but I'm saying this so you don't think I copied them! I started this LONG before I ever read their story.

Chapter 1: Healing, Meetings, and A Bracelet (Not necessarily in that order)

The war room was hot and stuffy, and there were about twenty or so leaders from the three nations. All the men and women were trying to get out what they had to say and were growing impatient with one another. It didn't help it was a tight squeeze for the almost two dozen people. Not to mention, they were all situated around a small table.

"Omashu still needs rebuilding," a General said, slamming his fist on the table to get attention, "With King Bumi's passing, may he rest in peace, none have been able to fill his shoes and construction has stopped. Avatar Aang, could you do it?" Aang was lost in thought, these meetings dragged on and he needed a break. He couldn't wait for the trip Sokka had planned. They were all going to The Southern Water Tribe to spend time with Hakoda, Gran-Gran, and Master Pakku. To just relax. "Avatar Aang?"

"What?" Aang jerked, "Oh, no General, I couldn't. But Toph Bei Fong could. She has a knack for those things. It would have to be done next month though we, my friends and I, leave at daybreak and we won't be back for a few weeks."

"What do you mean your leaving? There is much to be done!" The Earth King stood up, "We are still in need of your services to finish rebuilding Ba Sing Se. Who could do that better then you or Master Toph?"

Aang sighed in exhaustion, "I'm only 13, I'm a kid and rebuilding the lives of the broken is hardly something I can handle right now without some sort of break. Just open the main trade routes and keep the bandits from stealing. Now is a time of rest, everyone can benefit from it, goodbye." Aang bowed to the room of stunned faces and the Fire Lord quickly followed him out of the meeting.

"What are you doing?" he hissed, "I can't handle all this by myself and I certainly can't leave. I must lead my nation."

"Put Iroh in charge for a few weeks you need a break Zuko." Aang said simply, like it was the most obvious thing in the world. With that he left, leaving Zuko with a dumbfounded expression.

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"Hey Aang," Katara peeked her head around a wall and greeted the avatar when he walked into the house the Gaang was renting in a small fire nation village, "How was the meeting? You look exhausted!"

"Hey Katara, hey Suki," Aang waved at the Kyoshi warrior sitting of the couch, who to no ones surprise had quit putting on her warriors' uniform and stopped wearing all her makeup, Suki waved her greeting, "Terrible, terribly boring. We're leaving tomorrow morning, right?"

"I'm sorry to hear that. Actually I thought we could leave tonight, I already checked with everyone and they're okay with it, but if you'd rather leave tomorrow-"

Aang cut Katara off, "I'll pack my bag!" he said excitedly. Aang formed an air scooter and zoomed up the stairs.

"Wow, he sure looks exhausted." Suki said sarcastically. Katara giggled. She was finishing packing the food for the trip. Flying to her home would take a few days so there were going to be a few pit stops.

"So Suki, when are the other Kyoshi warriors coming to visit?" Katara asked curiously.

"Oh, I got a letter from them the other day. They are gong to visit us in The Southern Water Tribe. They're going to be there in a few days or so. Oh, by the way, a letter came for you, it's from Haru."

"Really? Thanks." Katara opened the letter and began reading;

Dear Katara,

First and foremost, I must congratulate you on taking down Azula. I've heard many stories and in each I've heard of the great waterbending warrior who triumphed over the evil fire nation princess. I knew it could only be you. Next, my father sends his greetings and my mother thanks you again. Finally, I hope you are coming to visit soon because, well, I was wondering if you would like to have dinner sometime. You truly are an amazing person. Send Aang and Sokka my greetings.

Haru

Katara's eyes widened in shock; that was not what she was expecting. "What?" Suki asked eagerly. She had met Haru and was interested in what the earthbender had to say to Katara.

"Umm… Haru wants to date me." She stammered, hardly believing what she was saying.

"But aren't you in a, however weird it its, relationship with Aang?" Suki asked; just as confused as Katara. Just not for the same reasons.

"Well yes and no but… I just don't know." Aang and Katara had an odd relationship, although it made perfect sense to the two, no one else could understand what was going on. They both loved each other and everyone knew it, but with Aang being 13 and needing to restore peace he didn't have time for he relationship he craved and Katara didn't want to put him in a position he wasn't comfortable with. So for now they had an unbelievably strong friendship. "I don't know Suki. I don't like Haru, I love Aang. I don't know what to do about this." She set the note on a desk, changing her mind she crumpled it up and threw it in a waste basket. She was lost in her thoughts. Her face wrinkled with confusion on how she was going to approach all this. She shook her head and slowly continued to finish packing.

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The moon was shining brightly that night and the stars twinkled. There was a slight breeze in the air, everything felt… calm. Outside the house Appa was lying down in front of a mountain of hay. The giant bison snored gently but was woken up by familiar voices and a small thump on his saddle. Momo had been sleeping on the saddle when Aang jumped aboard and almost landed on him.

"Whoops," Aang laughed, "Sorry Momo!" The flying lemur hissed and crawled to a different corner of the saddle. Aang giggled again.

"Are we good to go Aang?" Sokka yelled from below. He was anxious to get to his home and wanted to get a move on. Letting go of Suki's hand he helped her onto the saddle. Suki could have easily done this herself but she didn't want her boyfriend to feel that he wasn't needed.

"Yeah! Are Zuko and Mai here yet?" he asked scanning the group.

"We're right here," came Zuko's voice. He and Mai were jogging, so their friends didn't have to wait to long.

"Alright let's go!" Aang said in enjoyment. As everyone piled on Katara pulled Aang aside to talk to him about Haru's letter.

"Umm… Aang… I-I have something I think you should know. But before I say it, I have to ask you a question."

"Sure, what is it?" Aang said with a smile.

"We are waiting until he time is right to date, right?" she said twiddling her thumbs, "And we aren't suppose to date others because, you know, we love each other and-"

"Stop Katara. If you want to date someone else that's fine. If you don't want to date that's fine too. I love you. The only problem is that now is not the right time, I'm busy and we're both young a-" Katara cut him off with a kiss.

"You talk just a tad too much. We will just wait." She said smiling.

"Great!" Aang said with a jump, "Ahem… Uh… I mean, okay. But why did you ask me?" he tried to compose himself, the last thing he wanted to do was appear like a child in front of her.

"Well, Haru sent me a letter that said he wanted to, uh, go out but it felt wrong so I wanted to talk to you. I'm glad you feel the same way." And with that Katara climbed onto Appa, Aang followed. A little jealousy was running through him. But he did his best to hide his emotion. He didn't want to make Katara feel bad.

"Shine brightly Yue," Aang whispered to himself, "I need the guide."

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"We can camp here tonight." Aang said when Appa landed. He had found a clearing in a forest in The Southern Earth Kingdom. There was a river to the east and a farm a couple miles to the west in case they realized they had forgotten something. The ground was soft beneath their feet and the trees curved around them almost making a natural tent but with a hole big enough for the flying bison to fit through.

"Ahh, ground, sweet ground!" Toph said when she landed on the earth after jumping off Appa.

"You say that every time Toph." Sokka pointed out. Trying to one up her for all the times she messed with him.

"Whatever Sokka. I don't lie." She countered while making an angel in the dirt.

"What? What's that suppose to mean?" Sokka stuttered. A smirk stretched across Toph's face, she had he upper hand.

"I may just know secrets that all you are keeping from each other." Toph said slyly. In reality she only knew one or two secrets but it was fun to mess with them and she wanted to freak Sokka out, which worked. Sokka was pacing ringing his hands; Suki stopped him and made him sit down with her.

"What secrets could you know?" Mai finally spoke. But not with her usual bitterness, with a real curiosity. She was genuinely curious about what the blind earthbender knew.

"I know plenty. I'm going to bed." Toph turned her back and formed and earth tent, she didn't stir till morning.

"Let's follow Toph's lead and get some rest." Katara suggested. She grabbed her sleeping bag, pulled it away from he fire Zuko had made, crawled inside, and went to sleep. Sokka and Suki followed her lead as did Zuko and Mai. The only person who stayed up was Aang. He was finding sleep eluded him. He knew why, of course, jealousy. Jealousy of Haru. Aang hadn't shown it back when Katara had mentioned it but he didn't like the idea of Katara and Haru as a couple. The very idea made him wish he had hair just so he could pull it out in frustration. He loved Katara; didn't she know that he thought of her with another guy would kill him? That's why he had been so jealous of Jet. Even though he had never shown it. 'Maybe,' he thought, "If I make her a bracelet she would promise herself to me. Obviously I can't make her a betrothal necklace, which I will do, but until I'm 16 maybe a bracelet will ease my worries.' With that happy fought floating around in his mind Aang found himself drifting to a peaceful and well deserved nights rest.

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"Come on twinkle toes! Time to get up!" Toph yelled at her earthbending student. Aang moaned and rolled back over into his sleeping bag. Trying to ignore the nuisance.

"He's not getting up." Suki stated, like she had said it for the millionth time.

"We've tried everything," Mai said with her usual bitterness. No one quite knew why she was helping get him up, they didn't think she cared. However, she did, but only because she wanted to get going.

"I know what we can do," Toph exclaimed earthbending something into her hand, "acupuncture!"

"What? AHHH!" Aang jumped a few feet into the air and ran as fast as he could towards the river. AN: if you even care; Aang does the same thing as he did the first time Toph suggested acupuncture. He screams and his arms flail around. Just thought this would help with a mental picture.

"Just like last time twinkle toes." Toph said with a grin. Before Aang could stop himself he collided with another body and sent them both flying into the cold morning water. As Aang emerged he spit out some water and swam over to the brown hair turned away from him.

"I'm so sorry Ka-" Just then Katara turned around. A look of pure loathing encompassed her face. No words were needed Aang knew he was in trouble. He felt he huge tidal wave forming behind him. He bowed his head waiting for the coming wave to wash him down the river. The few seconds that went by felt like hours. Aang just wanted to get it over with. Then…

"A little splash?" Aang said in confusion. Katara then burst into laughter. She was laughing so hard she was actually snorting then fell into the water. Aang joined the laughter, realizing he wasn't being punished.

"Oh man, oh man!" Katara laughed, grabbing her stomach, "Oh that was so funny! You should have seen your face!"

"Umm… Katara… Katara it's really not that funny, Katara." He put a hand on her shoulder only to cause her to fall into the water again. It took several minutes to calm the waterbender down.

"Okay, okay, sorry. Its just you were so scared and because I caused it, it was hilarious." She had a huge smile on her face one filled with happiness and triumph.

Aang muttered some words under his breath. "Whatever, Let's just get going." Turning around and swimming towards shore, Aang heard another round of giggles coming from behind him.

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"Here we are! The Southern Water Tri-" The newly rebuilt city was in ruins, some bodies were scattered and a group was cluttered in a corner surrounding a campfire. The rest of the city was covered in red.

"What happened?" Katara whispered in awe. She scanned for the people closest to her, relieved to find they were okay. But this didn't stop the sadness that filled her heart for her people.

"Look there's dad," Sokka pointed out, relief filled his voice, "Maybe he can tell us." As Aang landed Appa Hakoda ran to the Bison. Worry screamed from his face. He skipped all formalities and no one blamed him.

"Avatar Aang, please, help us."

AN: Wow! Okay long chapter (in my opinion). Although most of it is filler (except for a couple parts which are pertinent to the rest of the story) and getting the characters to where they need to be, this chapter took I don't know how long to get it to where I was satisfied. A ton of re-reading, editing, and description went into this. So read and enjoy! Feel free to criticize in you reviews, I want it, it makes me a better writer.

P.S.- Oh come on! You really thought I wouldn't do ANY Kataang? I mean I'm all like "KATAANG FOREVER" there's no way I wouldn't do that. I'm just not going to do the whole, "Sweetie, Honey, My life is nothing without you, you're my soul mate" thing because I mean COME ON, can you say weak and vulnerable? Well… at least not yet *winky face and crooked smile to make you realize I WILL DO IT*