Disclaimer: I don't own Avatar. Don't look at me like that.
Just because Toph was blind didn't mean she couldn't see. She could see, just not in the way her companions could.
The thought made her smile. Sitting in the shade of a tree, Toph angled her head slightly, listening, closing her eyes. The wind blew by gently, tugging lightly on her hair, caressing her cheek. With it, the wind brought sounds and scents.
Thank you, my friend.
She could hear Sokka's yelp from the stream they had set up camp; he was probably trying to fish. Appa was munching busily on some hay Aang had bought from a farmer. Momo was chirping just above her, scampering busily among the branches, plucking berries of their roots and popping them into his mouth as he moved along. If she focused enough, Toph could even hear the ants as they crawled across the dirt and around the thin blades of grass.
She heard small splashes, and soft voices murmuring to each other; one in a questioning, confused tone, and the other gently scolding but still kind.
Aang and Katara.
They were probably practicing Waterbending, Toph mused. She opened her eyes slowly, slowing her breathing so she could focus her senses.
"No, Aang, you have to do it like this. Like a fish."
"What's a fish have to do with Waterbending?"
"You'll see if you just focus…"
Toph simply listened, focusing. If she focused hard enough, she knew she would see…
It started out slowly; it always did. Soft grays and blacks and whites began to dance across her sight like shadows, twisting like smoke. Slowly, ever so slowly, the shadows and smoke began, gently at first, to weave into shapes. Faded shapes, dark, shadowy shapes, but shapes nonetheless.
Shadows were all Toph could see, even when she focused with all her might. Shadows were all she would ever see, but it was enough.
Smoke wreathed the edges of her limited vision, but she ignored it, slowly sweeping her head around the campsite. She could see now; not totally, not for long, but she could see. Sokka was fishing, as she had suspected, tangled in line and grumbling. Appa crunched happily on his hay, Momo perched on one of his horns, chattering between bites of moon peach. Aang and Katara stood by a stream; or, at least, Katara stood, knee-deep in water. Aang sat on a rock watching her.
"I still don't get it, Katara," he murmured. "I'm sorry, but I really don't."
"Aang, it's okay." Gently, the young Waterbender ran her fingers down his arm. "Don't worry. You'll get it. You can't push yourself." Gently taking his hand, Katara tugged him off the rock into the water, smiling reassuringly. "Come on, you can do this. I know you can do this."
Aang blushed then, a subtle darkening of the shadowy grays that were Toph's way of seeing. It was a very faint blush, barely noticeable, but having grown up in a world of darkness with limited vision, Toph saw it. She also saw—although Aang didn't—how Katara held his hand a few seconds longer then needed before, reluctantly, she let it go.
They're in love. It's official. They're in love.
Toph smirked, pleased that she had figured it out. Then again, it wasn't like it was hard.
Her limited vision was rapidly beginning to fade back into darkness; it always did. She didn't bother clinging to the last moments of sight; from experience, she knew she'd only get a headache if she tried. Even so, as her vision once again faded back into eternal darkness, she heard the unmistakable thud of Aang's heart as Katara's fingers gently brushed his own as she released his hand, heard her soft intake of breath.
Yes, Toph could see. She might be blind, but she could see. Not the way her companions could, but it was enough. And she could see that Katara and Aang were in love.
Her world faded to black.
I know this short, and Toph isn't paticularly hotheaded, but this was how I ended up writing her. So... tell me what you think.
The next story will be from Meng's point of view, Fortuneteller. And then I have left... (Checks) Haru, Zuko, and Bato. And then the epilogue. Yep.