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It was one of those days.
Things were slow at Aunt Wu's today; the summer heat was blistering in its intensity, and anyone within their right minds was locked up in their homes, trying to escape the sun, or swimming in whatever body of water they could find. Meng, however, did not know how to swim, nor did she care to learn, so at the current moment she was sitting on her bed, reading a scroll and nibbling on a cookie she had swiped from downstairs.
And she couldn't help but wonder where Aang and his friends were now.
The crush had faded, replaced now with feelings of friendship. She hoped that all was turning out well for Aang. Especially as far as his romance was concerned.
Meng had known pretty much from the start that Aang liked Katara, maybe even loved her. Aunt Wu had definitely known. Heck, the ducks might have even known. It had been one of those "Everybody-knows-but-Katara" things. Meng giggled at the thought, swallowing a mouthful of cookie.
She wondered if, after all the time that had passed, Katara knew about Aang's feelings towards her. She wondered if, after all the time that had passed, Katara returned Aang's feelings.
Why not find out?
Interest perked at the idea, Meng finished her cookie and slid off her bed; normally she would have ran downstairs, but the heat convinced her otherwise, so she walked.
Aunt Wu was not inside when Meng reached the bottom of the stairs, and after exploring the hallway, Meng concluded that the older woman had taken a break from her fortunetelling duties for the day.
Oh well. That made her idea easier to pull off, anyway.
It wasn't that Aunt Wu minded Meng using the bones; the old woman had been trying to get her apprentice truly interested in fortunetelling for years. This was just something Meng wanted to see for herself, without the old woman hovering over her shoulder.
There were ways, Meng had learned, of telling from the bones if someone returned another's feelings. It was pretty much like actual fortunetelling, only you had to say the names of the people before putting the bone in the fire. Meng had never actually done it before, but she had seen Aunt Wu do it countless times. How hard could it be?
Sliding the door to the fortunetelling room open, Meng stepped inside, leaving it open slightly so a gentle breeze could blow in. There was already a small fire going, small enough so it didn't actually add heat to the room. There was also a small pile of bones.
After some hesitation (She'd never done this before, after all), Meng slowly crossed the room, sitting on one of the cushions. She fished a bone out of the pile, carefully turning it over in her hands; she didn't know what she was looking for, but she wanted to do this right.
Problem? She didn't know what right was.
So she'd learn. She'd done it before.
After a moment, Meng took a deep breath. "This is for Aang and Katara," she murmured. "I just want to know if things are turning out okay for them." Without hesitation, and saying nothing else, she tossed the bone into the fire.
For awhile, nothing seemed to happen. The flames licked hungrily at the bone, but it never cracked. Meng wondered if she'd done something wrong.
And then it happened.
It was not one, big spectacular crack, but two very small ones, starting side-by-side at one end of the bone. Slowly these two separate cracks webbed their way along the bone, sending off small chips and making the fire roar and crackle with energy. Intrigued, Meng leaned forward.
The two cracks veered suddenly, slashing across the bone to intersect near the very center, where the fire was the warmest. For that single moment, the two separate cracks were connected; and then a single crack broke away from the two joined cracks and continued on its way along the bone.
The message was clear. Meng smiled.
"Way to go, Aang."
From outside the fortunetelling room, Aunt Wu smiled, the quiet, knowing smile of a fortuneteller. Silently, she closed the door.
I'm seriously considering dropping Haru's POV and going straight for Bato's. At least Meng was featured in an ep that had some Kataang, which (although difficult) was a bit easier for the story idea. Haru, I'm drawing zilch on him. So yeah, if Bato's POV shows up, it means Haru's has been dropped. Sorry...