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The young princess sat on the edge of the balcony over looking the city. She held the end of her braid and felt the long blue ribbon that tied the end of her hair together. Katara had just received the ribbon as a gift from her brother; for her sixteenth birthday.
Princess Katara was now of marrying age, and she had many suitors. Her father was to choose who she would marry. Even though her brother, Prince Sokka, would be the heir to the throne.
The South Pole was her home her entire life and she had many friends. Her water bending teacher was Master Omana. Omana had been teaching her ever since Katara was a child. The princess has recently mastered water bending and she was one of the best in the city.
"Katara what are you doing up hear all by yourself?" Her grandmother asked her. Katara looked up from her hair and at her elderly grandmother. Kana was married to the chief of the Water Tribe until the death of her husband, her son, Hakoda, was now chief.
"Nothing Gran Gran. I was just admiring my new ribbon Sokka gave me." Katara said with a smile, and placed her braid back over her shoulder.
"We received wonderful news today." Her grandmother said and walked to stand beside Katara.
"What is it?" Katara asked and noticed the scroll her grandmother held in one hand. Katara grew confused after she saw the Fire Nation insignia on the ends of the scroll.
"It's a peace offering." Kana said and began to open the scroll. Katara watched and wondered why her grandmother would show her a political document.
"What's the offering?" Katara asked and leaned towards her grandmother to read the scroll.
"The Fire Nation is offering the Prince's hand in marriage as an offering of peace." Kana said, and gave the scroll to her granddaughter. Katara's eyes grew wide and she snatched the scroll from her grandmother's hands.
"I am not marrying some spoiled Fire Nation Prince!" Katara said as her eyes moves along the writing of the official document.
"I know you don't want to… but this is your chance to bring peace to your country." Kana tried to explain to her. Katara closed the scroll and handed it to her grandmother.
"It is bad enough that father was going to choose a suitor for me, but now not even he gets a choice." Katara complained and crossed her arms in frustration.
"You do have a choice. Either marry the prince and end this war. Or choose not to marry him and let this war continue." Kana sadly told her granddaughter. Katara knew her grandmother was trying to give her a guilt trip, but she also knew she was right.
"I guess I don't have a choice then…" Katara said as she leaned against the balcony wall, and looked down at her feet. Kana turned to her granddaughter and picked up her head.
"You are doing the right thing." She reassured the princess.
"Thanks Gran Gran." Katara said and wrapped her arms around her grandmother.
"You're welcome, dear." Kana answered and broke the hug.
"I can't wait to hear Sokka's reaction to all this." Katara said with a grin on her face.
"Why don't you do tell him. But be sure to talk slowly." She said as she watched the princess walk down the stairs to her brothers room.
"I will!" Katara called back to her grandmother, while she giggled to herself.
Princess Katara continued down the steps to her brother's room. She wondered if her fiancé was handsome, or charming. Maybe he was smooth and a good kisser… No she shouldn't be thinking like that. Why would she even think that!?
Her thoughts stopped once she got to her brother's door. Katara took a deep breathe and knocked on her brother's door. Her seventeen year old brother opened the door and looked down at his younger sister.
"Hey Katara." Sokka said and shut the door behind him.
"Hi Sokka." Katara replied and watched her brother close his door. "I have something to tell you." Katara said and looked at him.
"Okay, what?" Sokka asked and crossed his arms.
"I am being sent to the Fire Nation." Katara said, with a sad expression on her face.
"What do you mean?" Sokka asked and uncrossed his arms, concerned for his sister.
"For a peace offering between the Southern Water Tribe and Fire Nation… I am marrying their Prince." Katara said and looked to the floor.
"A peace offering?! That's great!" Sokka said and smiled to himself.
"Sokka! I'm getting married! To a complete stranger, not just a stranger. The Fire Nation Prince!" Katara said and wanted to knock some sense into her brother.
"I'm sorry, but this is a good thing too. This means the war is over between us. You're saving your country Katara." Sokka said and placed his hand on her shoulder.
"I know Sokka, but I might not see you… for a long time." Katara said.
"I'll be at your wedding." Sokka said, and took his hand from her. She looked at her brother.
"Thanks Sokka." She said sarcastically. "That makes me feel so much better." Katara joked with her brother.
"You're welcome." Sokka said, also sarcastically. He wrapped his arms around his sister and gave her a hug.
In the Fire Nation
Prince Zuko and his uncle had just finished their fire bending lesson. And the Prince was improving, he was nearly a master. All he needed to do was master lightening bending. His younger sister, Azula, had already mastered lightening by the time she was fourteen.
"Prince Zuko, I need to discuss something with you." Iroh told his eighteen year old nephew. The prince walked to his uncle, and sat beside him on a bench.
"What is it, Uncle?" Zuko asked.
"Your father has made the decision, for who your bride will be." Iroh announced.
"Oh." Zuko said and sat up straight. "Who is she?" Zuko asked.
"She is a Princess." Iroh began.
"Princess of what?" Zuko asked, confused.
"Princess of the Southern Water Tribe." Iroh finished. Zuko's eyes grew big and he stood up.
"Why the hell, would father make me marry a woman from the Water Tribe?!" Zuko asked in anger.
"Calm down nephew. Your father offered your hand in marriage as a peace offering between the two nations." Iroh calmly said.
"Screw the peace offering! I am not marrying her!" Zuko told his uncle.
"You have to Zuko, it's not a choice." Iroh said with some force in his voice. "The Princess will be here in a few days. You will have two weeks to get to know one another. Then you will be married." Iroh told Zuko.
Zuko let a sigh of anger and stormed off to his bedroom. Iroh shook his head and left to drink tea.