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023: Friends

Katara is determined not to get drunk on her wedding night. However, Toph, Suki and Mai manage to convince her otherwise.


"Guys, really, I don't know… I mean, the ceremonies tomorrow… what if I do something stupid?"

Katara had been babbling random excuses and misfortunes that could befall them for the past ten minutes as Toph and Suki shoved her along the street, encouraging her steps with sniggers in the dusk atmosphere of the city. Mai walked calmly beside the three slightly struggling women with an expression of mellowed amusement as she watched the stunned faces of those who passed them. "Katara, it's your wedding night! What stories will you tell of your last hours as a single woman if you stay home all alone drinking tea while we went off to celebrate without you? Yes, that's right, we would have left you by yourself if you refused to come – don't look at me like that! It'll be fine! Nothing will happen!"

"I agree with Toph," Suki said thoughtfully after the intensity of the Waterbender's glare softened. "It'll be fun!"

"Yes," Mai added drearily with a meek twitch of her mouth. "Fun."

"See?" Toph gestured dramatically with a grin. "We even got Mai all eager!"

Katara bit her lip with an anxious appearance on her features, switching nervous glances between her companions. "Oh alright!" she sighed, folding her arms in defeat. "But if something goes wrong, I'm blaming you all and you'll have to live with ruining my wedding day on your conscience." she paused, adding quickly. "And the Spirits won't be very forgiving – I am marrying the Avatar. He's close, personal friends with half of them."

"Don't worry; we'll take the chance, even with the knowledge that a giant panda may eat us…"

"Its no laughing matter," Katara stated with a curt nod. "Hei Bai is quite ferocious."

Toph snorted but did not respond.

A lively tavern with hung lanterns, vigorous tunes and an overpowering aroma of freshly baked breads came into view, the girls pace quickened at the very sound of others gathering and chatting happily over a warm fire. Laughter echoed the chambers of the citizens dancing merrily. Mai sighed, stating. "It looks very busy."

"Not a problem," Toph marched to the counter and flicked a few copper pieces from her pocket onto the hardwood to the startled attendant as well as flashing her Golden Boar passport. "I am a member of the Bei Fong family, they are the Fire Lady and Kyoshi's head warrior and we have the Avatars bride-to-be," she gestured airily to Mai, Suki and Katara, "give us your best table."

"Toph!" Katara felt the heat rise in her cheeks.

"What? We saved the world, we deserve some special treatment every once and a while. Oh, and I am blind," Toph added decisively to the worker, waving her hand absently before her face. "So we will need the best table closest to the bar."

Suki laughed, whispering. "Good excuse!"

The attendant seemed overwhelmed as he bowed with a large smile. "This way please, Ladies."

They were seated immediately despite Katara's protests and, indeed, given special treatment. Suki returned to their table with a tray full of complimentary drinks and finger-foods, to which Mai assisted by placing four mugs on the counter and filling them to the brim with a honey-coloured liquid while the Kyoshi warrior picked at the sweetmeats on the platter.

"Hey, wait a minute," Katara cried, eyeing the cups suspiciously. "I asked for water! Does that look like water to you?"

"Katara," Toph slammed a glass of mead in front of her. "Shut-up and drink-up!"

She observed the liquid cautiously; uncertainty written on her features as she sighed and gingerly grasped the mug in her hands. While she had been evaluating, Toph had already guzzled down her glass and had gotten Suki to pour her another.

"Okay," she raised a warning finger. "One drink!"

THIS IS NOT THE END! I need more help, yet again. Pathetic, I know. I have written more than this but I'd like to see what everyone thinks should or would happen, but know this: Drunk!Aang and semiDrunk!Sokka and Zuko are included! Heehee... I'd love to hear what you come up with and hopefully I'll add it with a thank you list in the final story in a couple of days! Of course, Friends won in the vote last chapter by a long shot, as I suspected! Thanks to all who voted!

Please read and review!