I started writing this a while back. I saw the new epsidoes and went, what? This oneshot is gonna look weird (don't get me wrong, I love the new epsidoes). But yeah. This one is more serious than my captured oneshot and it was much harder for me to write. I actually really enjoyed it (As much as you can "enjoy" torturing Aang. Which I don't.) Anywho it's a Aang capture story in which he actually does something. Lol. Pls review when you finish. I would appreciate it. And even if you decide not to, I seriously hope you enjoy all of it anyway.
Aang groaned as he was lifted from the ground, both of his arms bound behind his back.
Aang shook his head lightly, willing his vision to clear as he felt himself dragged away, out of the cell that had held him for the last three weeks, but definitely towards something just as terrible.
The two soldiers holding his arms continued to drag him as his legs threatened to give out, following Azula through a series of hallways until finally reaching a large balcony on the outside of the building.
Aang felt a rare cold chill run across his arms and legs, serving to remind him that he was only in his trunks. The heat had been almost too much to bear and two weeks prior he had been stripped down to the bear essentials, with the excuse that it should give him some relief from the heat.
Aang finally began to recognize cheering in his ears. His vision finally began clearing.
He wished it hadn't.
He was outside, he wasn't sure how high up but high enough to see the huge multitude below him. The soldiers released him and stepped back as the cheering increased. Aang's breath hitched in his throat. There were too many people for him to hope to count. It was obvious that all the occupants of whatever city he was being held in were not present, but there were enough people present that hated the Avatar. That wanted him dead for his "treachery" to the fire-nation…. And it suddenly shocked him how many people hated the Avatar for trying to establish peace.
Aang had forgotten about his pain as he looked though the crowd, his gazing landing on a woman near the front, who looked at him and then turned away, visibly crying. Three children gathered around her, and they all seemed very close to tears as well. Aang turned away, suddenly overwhelmed with defeat and embarrassment.
Azula walked beside him but he did nothing, mostly because he felt he couldn't. He had barely enough energy to keep himself standing. There was also the threat she had been constantly using against him.
"Ladies and gentlemen!" She exclaimed suddenly. Aang looked at her before turning away and looking over the crowd. Azula paused momentarily before finishing. "The Avatar!"
The crowd filled with a million different sounds. Some cheered, a few laughed for reasons Aang could never hope to understand, and more still (a very small portion of the crowd) looked away in disappointment or held in tears so as not to upset the fire nation government.
Aang's heart was thudding in his chest. The Avatar was being shown publicly in the state he was in, bound and captive to the nation whose fire-lord he was trying to defeat. He wondered what Azula's purpose was in bringing him here, and only had to just barely glance at her to know. The princess steadily stared back at him with a daring and amused glint in both her eyes.
Aang didn't ponder how she could show both emotions so clearly. He turned away, bowing his head and clenching his teeth as a strong feeling began to surge through him. He could only define it as anger. His breathing increased and suddenly the crowd fell silent. Aang didn't realize that the noise had stopped, but he could feel himself slipping slowly into the Avatar State. Azula almost shocked him out of it as she stepped forward confidently, laying a hand on his shoulder and whispering into his ear. "I do hope your friends are safe."
Aang's eyes widened and he instantly forced himself to calm down. The glowing that had begun to spread over his body quickly disappeared. The anger remained within him as Aang looked over the crowd. Both shocked and confused faces stared back at him.
Azula clenched her teeth and stepped forward, hissing lowly into his ear, "Bow."
The crowd was still almost completely silent and Aang knew that Azula wanted them to see the Avatar crumple beneath the might of the fire-nation once again.
Aang steadied his stance on his shaky legs, ignoring the command in his ear. Before he was anywhere near ready, he felt a sharp pain cross his back. It lasted only a second but left a terrible sting behind. He instantly fell to his knees, his wrist stinging as well. He had been hit enough to know that Azula had just slashed a fire-whip across his back.
Aang closed his eyes and began shakily standing, with his hands still tied behind his back, but stopped with Azula's quiet warning. "You stand and I'll triple what you just felt on the water-tribe peasant."
Aang clenched his teeth again, grinding them together. Azula had just only found out that he was completely in love with Katara, and since then had used it to her advantage. Every time it was brought up, Aang felt a multitude of emotions pass through him. He knew that he couldn't continue to sacrifice the safety of all of the nations for one person. Then he would imagine her getting hurt, getting scarred as he had, and he couldn't help but to obey whatever order had been given him.
Aang looked into the crowd for the final time, his gaze going back to the woman and children that actually seemed to care about his condition. His gaze wandered over each one in turn, finally landing on the youngest: a girl with short brown hair and yellow eyes, so bright they seemed almost white. She was no older than three, but stared back at him steadily with no trace of emotion on her face. Aang didn't know how she felt, watching what she had been taught was the peacemaker of the world fall beneath the fire-nation. But he somehow knew that she was on his side.
He was letting her down, along with the whole world. He clenched his eyes tightly. He couldn't bear to look into her knowing gaze and he couldn't bear to watch Katara get hurt. He could do nothing. His resolve crumpled under the pressure and he bowed his head lowly in defeat.
Aang heard whispering behind him and his hands began to be untied, for a moment, he was surprised, then his hands were separated and one was cuffed then tied to a wooden piling he had failed to notice before, while the other was tied to another piling. Azula stepped aside, allowed a different man to step forward, and began his job. Aang heard a small sound, like a branch cutting through the air, and his breathing sped up once more.
The man dropped a whip to his side. It was a mass of wires bound together at the top with small thorn-like pieces of metal breaking off on various areas. Aang couldn't see it, but he was sure he knew what it was and couldn't help but be afraid. A moment later, he found that he was right to be afraid, as the wires slashed across his back, a small casing of fire surrounding them.
Aang had already been ridiculed, beaten, and starved within the period of the last three weeks. He had endured the fire-whip already, but this pain was just beyond his capability to endure. The whip left permanent scars on his back, every thorn-like piece of metal tore through his skin as it pulled away, before the fire came back, brutally burning each new cut.
Blood pooled into his Aang's mouth and he realized that he had bitten down on his lip. With the realization came other realizations: the screaming in his ears, the people that were below him. Aang's eyes filled and overflowed with tears before he had a chance to hold them off and he was no longer able to hold in a shocked scream. Before he could do anymore, the world began sliding away from him. His senses numbed, and to his relief, he passed out.
The torture continued until Azula finally noticed his slight change of posture, and she raised her hand to stop the man. She walked around to his front and raised an eyebrow at the unconscious Avatar. She had known that, obviously, the whip would be hard on his twelve-year old body. Nevertheless, to pass out right in the middle?
"Avatar." There was no response and she ordered him lowered before walking to the entrance and coming back with a vase. The soldiers holding Aang previously walked him to the front of the crowd once more, avoiding the blood and sweat covering his back. Azula walked to his front and tossed the water strait from the vase to his face. Aang's eyes snapped open, his lungs taking deep, painful breaths. His distorted gaze scanned quickly over the crowd as Azula stood beside him and announced again, "The Avatar!"
Aang's senses were out of focus as he allowed himself to be carried away.
"Is he awake yet?"
"No. When he is, I'll tell you."
"But the princess-"
"I know. But he's not awake. What does she expect after that display? He may be the Avatar, but he's still just a kid."
"Whose side are you on?"
The faraway clip-clop of shoes on the metal floor was what Aang heard when he finally woke up.
Aang opened his eyes groggily. He was lying on his left side and he forced himself to sit up. He released with a jolt that he wasn't bound to anything and began rubbing his wrists, to get the circulation going. He looked around the room and found himself in a different one than what he had been in before. It was the mostly the same: metal floor, metal walls, small barred window, and a thick metal door. But it was different. Maybe it was the size or the shape. Aang couldn't pinpoint it, but it was definitely different. He backed up to the wall to lean against it, only to gasp and move away from it.
He reached a hand to his back, bringing it back with blood and a clear liquid. He gasped and wiped his hand on the ground before lying back down on his side. His back felt numb and he looked up at the window to see the moon shining through it. He began wondering how long he had been asleep.
"Avatar?" a hushed voice asked.
Aang gasped and sat up staring at the door. A female guard stared back. He immediately jumped to his feet, holding his arms out in front of him, but he didn't expect the terrible pain in his back to suddenly come flooding back to him. His legs shook, and he fell to the floor, his entire body shaking with his legs as he attempted to stay on his hands and knees.
He felt hands fold calmly over his shoulders and looked up to the see the guard that had called to him before. Aang instantly pushed away and backed up to the wall. He shook with the small excursion and fell onto his side, groaning in the process.
The guard rushed forward once more, placing her hands on Aang's shoulder.
Aang's face twisted in pain as he pathetically attempted to swat away her hands while fighting the pain covering his body.
"I'm not here to hurt you." She whispered softly. He opened his eyes, breathing deeply. There was nothing he could do at this point. But she looked honest; she didn't look like she would hurt him.
Aang took a chance and whispered, "Then why are you here?"
"I-I brought you something."
He followed her hands as she untied a section of her skirt. It almost seemed as if she had built a large pocket onto the inside. Aang didn't ponder it long as something much more intriguing came out of the pocket.
The girl pulled out an odd yellow shaped fruit and held it out. Aang's eyes widened. He felt himself fill with a new kind of energy and he sat, pulling the fruit from her hand. He ate in mere seconds and looked up at her. "Where did you get that?" The last time he had had the fruit, it had been a hundred years ago.
She just smiled softly and reached back into the pocket, pulling out a large roll and an apple. Aang eagerly took the food from her hands once again, and got to work eating it. At first, the pain in his stomach only increased. His body seemed to just want more. Then he felt himself start to become satisfied and the pain began to lessen. It didn't take him long to finish the last of it and he looked up at her with a grateful smile. His smile turned to a look of confusion as he watched her consider him thoughtfully. She seemed completely mesmerized with him, though Aang knew that it was because he was the Avatar, not Aang.
"Um…" he began uncomfortably. She slipped out of the thought-like state she had been in before easily and regarded his "um".
"Thank you." He finally finished. "Really. Thank you."
"You're welcome." She whispered. She started to stand then sat back down. "I don't have long... But I'm sorry for what they're doing to you. I'm sorry I'm a part of it. I-I saw your friends-"
Aang felt a bubble of energy arise in his stomach and interrupted without thinking. "Katara? And Sokka and Toph? Are they ok? And is Zuko there too?"
She hurriedly quieted him down. "Please, keep your voice down. I'm not supposed to be here. And yes, they're fine."
"Fine? I mean, are they ok? Really-really ok. Are they hurt?"
"No. They're all right. They're not hurt and they get plenty to eat… well, more than you have anyway."
Aang's brow came together in confusion. "I thought Azula cut their rations?"
"Well, she did. But I…"
Aang understood what she was trying to say and nodded in understanding. "Thank you. Thank you so much. They're really not hurt?"
She sighed in aggravation. "No. They're not hurt. Well, the water tribe girl had one um… mistake." She watched Aang's face get worried and went on. "But she's alright. She's fine. She's ok."
Aang nodded and then whispered. "It was because of me, wasn't it?"
"Yes." She admitted. "Well not really you. But…"
"It's ok. I understand. As-As long as she's ok now." He sighed and placed his elbows on his knees, laying his eyes against the palms of his hands. "I don't know what to do."
Her face softened as she watched the young Avatar began sinking back into depression. "Hey." She lifted his chin with one hand and wiped away the tears in a friendly gesture using her other hand. "They're alright. You have food in your stomach…. You're going to be ok. You'll be out of here soon."
"How-How can you know that?" he muttered.
The smile on her face began to ebb. "You're the Avatar…." Aang looked away in embarrassment, but she turned her head and brought his gaze back to hers. "Don't give up hope." His eyes widened as a memory ran through his had.
She rose and started towards the door leaving another strange yellow fruit in his hand. She paused at the door and turned back to him. "Aang…" It was the first time that his name had been used in this prison and Aang looked up in shock. "If you give up hope…" she started softly. "… then… we all have to."
Aang's eyes widened as she finally left. His gaze wandered down to his hands and he ate the food a little too quickly, afraid someone else would come in and find him with it. He stood, feeling some of his strength come back with the meal and looked around the room. It looked hopeless. How would he get out of here?
"It you give up hope…then we all have to."
Aang's hands clenched into fists at his sides. "You'll be out of here soon." What did she mean by that?
He sat back down, deciding to think it out and wait. But he wasn't going to allow himself to give up hope again.
"Is he awake? Hey! Is he awake?"
"I know that. Is-"
"Yes. He's awake."
Aang heard keys clanking together outside the door and stiffened, standing up quickly.
A male guard opened the door and seemed very surprised that Aang looked as though he had so much energy. He shook himself out of it quickly and called another guard in. They began towards him. "The princess wants to see you."
"You can tell her to come in here to see me."
Both of the guards eyes widened in surprise. "What was that?"
"If she wants to see me, she can come to me."
The guards stared, then one burst into laughter. "Really?"
"Yes. Really." Aang said firmly.
"Well we have orders to take you to see the princess."
"Then I hope your "boss" doesn't get upset, because I'm not leaving this room."
One of the guards opened his mouth, but the other guard elbowed him in the stomach and he stopped. He turned to Aang and placed both of his hands in front of him, bringing them down quickly forming two fire whips that sent Aang to his knees. "You're being foolish. Staying in this room will get you nowhere, and if the princess were to find out about this… well, let's just say that a few of our prisoners may have an accidental casualty…. Or one of our prisoners."
Aang's gaze stayed on the floor. The guards stepped to him carefully and grabbed him, raising him from the floor and taking to their destination. Aang didn't say anything, but allowed it to happen.
When they reached their destination he was surprised. The room was completely empty, just like his had been. The only difference was that there was no window. Azula really could have come to his room. Did she just want to make him walk?
But Azula wasn't there, and Aang was surprised when they pushed him into the room, shutting it and locking it behind him.
He blinked and looked around, rising his arms and then dropping them in a "now what?" fashion.
Before he would have thought of this as a good thing. All he had wanted was to be left alone. Then company had meant pain. But after the talk he had had with the guard the night before, all he wanted was to do something. Anything. Make a difference and do his job. Give the people hope again.
He noticed that his feet were beginning to burn and looked at down. Why was the floor so hot here? Sure it was the fire-nation, but he had been in another cell before, and there was no reason this one should be any hotter. He crouched and rose an eyebrow. There were holes in the floor. Small circular holes that covered the entire floor. Aang looked around. Was it some kind of ventilation system? He looked up finding that the ceiling had the same holes in it. What were they for?
His answer came a moment later, as heat erupted from below him in the form of steam, sending his new hair strait up. It didn't hurt. It just seemed to make him relax and reminded him of the time Katara tried to calm him down through exercises in the heat. What was the point? Then the holes on the ceiling opened, spilling clear liquid to the floor. Aang gasped as it landed on his skin, burning it. For a moment he looked around frantically, wondering what to do. Then he realized how stupid they had been to give him water, water that burned no less.
Aang put his hands out in front of him, attempting to ignore the pain covering his body, and started to bend the water. He was in for a surprise. He could bend, but not enough to stop the water from coming. Aang tried again, doing his best to stop it but only just barely keeping the water from hitting parts of him. He let out a loud cry of frustration and dropped his hands, backing up to the wall where there was less water leaking though the ceiling.
He heard voices outside the door and listened closely hoping to hear something through the thick metal.
"Why is that on?! Turn it off!"
"But… you're majesty. You told us-"
"That was before."
"Idiot! He's had three days to recover! Turn it off now!"
Aang's eyes widened. He had been sleeping for three days? Aang heard a creak come from the door and looked up as the holes somehow were closed off. He sighed in relief but not before the door opened, and the fire-nation princess stood in front of him. She seemed to be much calmer than she had moments before, and Aang wondered if she were bluffing. He didn't ponder it long, instead bending water and steam and sending them at her. More disappointment came at him as he still wasn't able to bend much. Azula avoided the water easily and released a torrent of flames. Aang fell to the ground, gasping as his body was covered in the acid that had been left on the floor when the holes had sealed. He stood quickly. Holding his side where a large flame had just burnt and breathing deeply.
She smirked for barely a second and lowered her arms slowly, regaining her lofty composure. "I received news from two guards that you were rather hard to get into this room. "
Aang gulped and looked behind her, seeing the two guards she was referring to. She stepped aside and so did they, and he was shocked at who they brought forward. "Augh! Let go of me!"
Aang felt a smile twist on his face despite his position as the guards struggled to keep her still. "Katara…" he whispered in disbelief. "Katara!" He started forward quickly.
Katara looked up and pulled forward gruffly. "Aang!"
"Now, now." Azula casually flicked a small fire-ball to the floor, and Aang's eyes widened in horror as the acid lit, filling the room full of flames. He used the little bending he could manage, pushing the acid and fire away from him enough not to get immediate contact.
Katara's eyes widened as she attempted to see over the fire, only seeing the top half of his head. "Aang!"
"I-I'm ok!" he called back shakily to reassure her. The truth was that he was not ok. He wasn't covered in the flames of acid, but his arms were licked as he attempted to keep the fire away from him and the heat was enough to burn him as the air and floor heated. The fire was only growing harder to keep away from him.
Katara turned to her left and gasped as she watched Azula, arms outstretched as she slowly attempted to push the fire towards him. She pulled roughly on the arms of the men holding her. They continued to keep a firm grip and she turned to one, glaring at him with obvious hate in her eyes. The guard gulped and moved just slightly away from her.
A groan came from her left and caused Katara to turn from them to Azula. Azula's eyes twitched in annoyance. It was growing visibly harder for her to keep the fire going where she wanted it to go. Katara looked back into the flames. Aang was completely hidden now. She struggled with her hands and breaking away, finally deciding to do something else. "You're doing it Aang! You can do it! I know you can do it!"
Aang heard her words. Did it mean that he was getting through? Aang blew some air from his mouth, managing to clear the air long enough for him to see Azula and Katara to her right. The hole closed and he heard a loud clap followed by a, "Shut up!"
Aang clenched his teeth tightly. "Don't touch her!" he yelled, and pushed fire away from him at the same time.
"Ah!" Azula flew back into the wall, and stood to see Aang standing behind the flames, glaring at her. The fire was going out and just about to Aang's knees.
Azula glared back at him as Aang began gathering the fire and turned roughly to her right sending flames out before Aang could stop her.
The guards gasped and stepped back just as the flames hit Katara, sending her to the ground. Aang realized for the first time that Katara's hands were tied, and her only defense was him. Katara clenched her eyes tightly as Azula pounded her with fire again.
Aang pushed air beneath him and sailed over the fire, landing beside Azula. And a full battle had raged between them. Katara raised herself and rotated her wrists bringing water to her wrists and cutting strait through the rope. She turned back around and backed up just in time as a flare of fire swept past her.
She looked up and bit her lip as she watched Aang began to teeter. His burst of strength had only come because he had been trying to protect her. The air was dry; she didn't have her water-skins. He was in bad condition, and she knew it.
Aang suddenly fell, gasping and coughing. Katara wondered what she had missed until he dropped his hands, so he was leaning on them and his knees and began coughing up blood. Katara ran past Azula, surprised that she didn't try to stop her and landed beside him. She looked over his body, trying to decide what part of his body would hurt the least if she were to touch him. He finally stopped and looked up at her weakly, a small pool of blood below him. "K-Katara…." He groaned and dropped his head. Katara looked to Azula and stood up, her hands outstretched like Azula's were.
Azula looked amused for a moment, but it took barely a moment for the look of amusement to turn to one of terror as her body moved of its own accord before slamming to the floor.
Aang watched. Confused and almost scared at the way Azula's body twitched and squirmed as she tried to stop. 'Just knock her out….' Aang's mind thought. 'Just hit her head into the floor.' But Azula continued to squirm and Katara didn't stop. "Katara!" Katara continued concentrating, closing her eyes as she did so. "KATARA!"
Katara's eyes opened and she froze, before slowly lowering Azula to the ground. She backed up with a strait face, then turned her hands up and looked down at them. She turned around and then, hearing Aang groan, turned back to him and knelt beside him.
"We… We have to get out of here…." He muttered pushing himself to his feet. "Augh…." Katara caught him as he started falling and then set him down, realizing that it hurt him to be held.
"How are we going to get out of here?"
Aang looked up at her, his eyes drooping.
"Oh. Wh-What did you say?"
"How are we going to get out of here?"
Aang shook his head to clear it. "Where is everybody?"
Katara looked down the hall. "I can lead you to Toph and Sokka, and Sukki too. They were all in the same cell as me. I'm not sure about Zuko though."
"I know where he is. The guards were talking…" he pushed himself up once again "…about it."
"Aang, does your right side hurt?"
Aang looked down and shook his head. "Just my left side. I mean… it kinda hurts… but not as much as my… er… left side."
"Here…" Katara reached down wrapped an arm around his right side, pulling his arm over his shoulder. "Let's go."
Aang nodded and tried to keep himself from blushing while attempting to walk beside her. Aang stopped them after they had only taken five steps and looked down. "Wh-Where's Azula?"
Katara's eyes widened and she followed his gaze before looking behind them.
"She just disappeared." He muttered.
Katara groaned. "It doesn't matter. C'mon, let's keep going."
Their pace was agonizingly slow and she watched his face as he tried to keep the pained emotion from it. "Maybe we should sit down for a moment."
"No! I-I'm ok."
"Look, I want to get out of here too. But if you have no strength it's going to be a lot harder."
He laughed bitterly. "Katara, even if I were to stop… it wouldn't help. I'm way beyond being tired."
Katara sighed and continued to support him until they finally reached their destination. "How do we get in? Augh! There's nothing for me to bend! I feel so helpless!"
"Yeah there is." Aang coughed and looked up at her. "I-I'm covered in stuff to bend."
Katara looked down at him in shock. "What do you want me to do?"
"I can bend… if I have to… b-but it's really hard. I know this is weird, but I have blood on my back, and I-I'm really tired."
"You want me to use your blood and sweat?"
Aang nodded. "I wouldn't mind you pulling out some of the infection too."
"You're right that is weird." She nodded. "But we don't have time to complain. I'm going to have to set you down." She did so and carefully bended the liquid she could from his skin, forming a light red liquid. Aang felt weird, tingly, as the process went. Katara simply pulled the water from him. For a moment he felt lightheaded and his skin felt as if she were pulling water from his pores, then she encased the locks on the door and froze them, before shattering them to the floor. The floor slid open and Toph jumped up, clenching both of her fists.
"Relax, it's just us." Katara said, and Aang realized that the entire cell was covered in wood.
"Us?" Toph asked eagerly.
Sokka jumped up and ran forward, followed by Sukki. "Katara! Aang… what happened to you?"
Aang lowered his gaze and Katara sensed his discomfort. "Now's not the time. We have to get out of here." Sokka nodded and pulled Sukki forward as Toph followed.
"Here." Sokka bent down and helped Katara make a rest for Aang to sit in. "Be careful of his side."
"I can see it."
"Alright let's go." Toph nodded, silently volunteering as lookout, so they could continue to "lookout" for Aang.
After a few minutes, Toph held her hand out to stop them. "There's guards. Lots of them. We'll have to fight through."
Katara looked worriedly at Aang. "Let's leave Aang here and then come back for him once there's a path."
Sokka nodded and they began to set Aang down, but he finally notices what was going on, snapping out of his dream-like state. "No. I'm… coming."
"Aang, you're falling asleep! You're only getting worse! You're staying here. We'll come back for you." Katara paused and leaned forward, leaving a short kiss on his cheek before running out from behind the corner they had been behind.
Aang breathed deeply, struggling to keep his eyes open as he listened to the fight. He heard a sound to his left and turned, gasping in horror and covering his head with his arms as Azula slammed flames over his head. He landed on his back as she continued. His body was too weak to do anything, and he whimpered, trying to stop the flames from touching his sensitive skin anymore. He gasped, "S-Stop… please." He wasn't talking directly to Azula, he knew she wouldn't stop. He wasn't sure who he was talking to. He just wanted it to end. His entire body was covered in wounds and he was getting scared. He couldn't feel a place on his body that didn't hurt, and there was something even more terrifying about wondering how much more his body would be able to take before shutting down all the way. "K-Katara…" he choked. He closed his eyes tightly, feeling guilt overtake him. He still had to defeat the fire-lord. People needed him. And he was just lying on the floor allowing Azula to take his, and, consequently, their lives.
Aang turned onto his hands and knees, pushing himself up. Tears fell from his eyes as the heat increased, blue flames hitting the floor around him. He continued standing, wondering if it was hopeless before banishing the thought from his mind, and spinning around to face her.
Azula looked surprised for a moment, and then glared deeply at him. "Have you even seen yourself yet? It's hopeless Avatar. You're going to die. No one can live through the wounds you have."
The words hit him hard as he realized that she was right. His entire body was shaking. It wouldn't be long before his body really wouldn't be able to take it.
Azula circled him and Aang saw in her eyes something that he had never seen in her eyes before: fear. Her facial expression clearly said, 'How is he still standing?'
Aang steadied his stance as best he could before flinging his arms from him.
Azula jumped to the side, expecting something more spectacular, then the smirk was back on her face. "Pathetic."
She was right and Aang found himself back on the floor, fire pounding onto his stomach. His burns were now bleeding. He hadn't known that he could feel so much pain, and he realized that he couldn't do it on his own. He needed someone to help him.
'We're with you.'
Aang pushed himself up once more through the flames, his legs threatening to buckle once again.
Azula's eyes went wide, then sharpened. "I'm getting tired of this. This will be our last battle, Avatar."
"Yes. It will." Aang gathered whatever energy was left in him, bringing it all to one spot and letting it go in a torrent of flames. All of his energy was spent, and he fell to the floor, darkness stretching from the corners of his mind to the rest of his body.
The first thing he heard as he woke was a voice. He couldn't understand it at first. Then he realized that it was calling his name. His eyes finally opened and he found himself staring into beautiful worried eyes. He opened his mouth, attempting to say her name but only letting out a muffled. "Umph…"
"Aang." She said in relief. She reached down and pulled his torso to her, tears on her face. "You-You're…" she let out a deep sigh of relief. She didn't want to say that she wasn't sure he was going to make it.
"Where am I?" he whispered.
"We-We're still here. I was afraid to move you."
Aang's eyes opened groggily. "I'm tired…"
"I know. Sokka! I need your help!"
Aang heard shuffling and a grunt before Sokka joined Katara beside him. Their faces were fuzzy and their voices far away. Katara was saying something. He wasn't sure what and she began to shake him forcefully. He didn't have the energy to do anything. He just wanted to have some peace. To rest the way his body had when he had been whipped.
"Aang… oh-oh no. A-Aang please. Wake up!" Aang facial expression didn't change and he almost seemed as if he had fallen asleep with his eyes still open. She began shaking him. Panicking as he still remained the same way. If he fell asleep, she knew he might not wake up. And she suddenly realized with a jolt that she was panicking not because the Avatar was dying, but because Aang was dying. And she didn't want to loose him. "Aang…" Sill nothing. She bit her lip and looked down at him, fear and guilt building inside of her, before quickly filling the gap between them.
Aang felt the world slipping completely away from him, but something stopped him. There was something… different. Something about him. He faintly realized the pressure above him. A strange tingling feeling covered his entire body before he finally realized what the pressure was. It was Katara. Her lips. On his. She was kissing him, and for once he hadn't been the first one to do it.
Sokka, Sukki, and Toph stared down, Sokka and Sukki gasping as the arrows on his body began to glow before fading out once again.
And Katara felt him kissing back.
She pulled back in surprise, and stared down at him. Aang's face had a sleepy and crooked smile on it as he looked back up at her. And he sighed softly in contentment, while squirming just slightly. "I can't move…." He barely whispered.
Katara didn't do anything for a moment, and her face twisted in and out of different emotions as if she wasn't sure what to feel. Then she nodded and ushered Sokka over. They picked him up carefully and Katara quickly wiped her tears away before stubbornly moving on.
Aang knew that he was in bad condition. He could feel it, or rather, he couldn't feel it, and that was just worse. But he would get better. He knew he would. He had died once. But no matter what happened, he wasn't going to allow himself to loose his hope again. People needed the Avatar. He was their hope. And apparently, he thought with a quiet smile… he was Katara's too.
So, that's it. I really hope you like my slightly twisted version of Aang capture fics, and hopefully tommorow I can see the movie and descover how weird this one-shot now seems. They change so much in the characters in one episode. Thanks!