The Box

It was around dawn when Toph opened her pale green eyes. A few strands of sunlight poured into her room from the window. Giving an immense yawn, Toph rolled over and flung her blankets off of her. Disregarding the fact that her room was a total mess, she strode over to a window and lifted the blinds. Immediately, her room was immersed in sunlight. Stepping away from the window, she slowly made her way over to her door. Before she reached it, her foot connected with something.

Reaching down, she picked up whatever it was that she kicked. Turning the item over in her hands, she realized it was a box. A plain old, empty box. But it was the box that gave Toph a brilliant and evil idea.


The box in her arms, Toph made her way over to the house where the Southern Water Tribe siblings stayed. Upon reaching the entrance, Toph stomped on the ground, resulting in the fall of the door. The sound resonated throughout the entire house.

"Gosh, Toph. Can't you just knock like other people?" asked Katara. The waterbender stood in front of the toppled door, just a few feet away from Toph.

"Morning Katara," Toph says, disregarding her nagging and enters the home. "Where's Sokka?"

"Still sleeping," Katara replied.

"Good."

"Um, Toph?" Katara asks after a moment of silence, "Why do you have a box?"

"Oh, yeah. I need you to do something for me. Take this box and write, 'Do Not Open' on it. Then, when you're done, place it by Sokka's bed. Don't say who it's from, or how it got there. And if he asks, you know nothing," Toph instructed. She hands the box to Katara, already sealed. The young waterbender takes it, but with great reluctance.

"Okay... why?" she asked, confused.

"Just do it." And with that, Toph returns home.


Toph was out practicing her bending, when Katara showed up.

"So?" Toph asks in between hits.

"I did it. But I still don't get it. What's with the box? What's in it?" Katara questions rapidly. Toph stops and turns in the direction of Katara's voice, facing her.

"Nothing," she says bluntly.

"Nothing? You mean nothing as in, you don't know what's with the box? Or, there's nothing in the box?"

"There's nothing in the box." Toph clarifies.

"Oh. Then why'd you give it to him?"

"I was bored. And besides. Sokka has a natural-born curiosity," Toph replied, smiling mischievously.


It was midday, and Toph was lounging about on her back, outside in her backyard. She was half-way asleep, when heavy vibrations started coursing through her. They stopped abruptly a few feet away from where she lay.

"You're interrupting my nap. What is it?" asks Toph, annoyed.

"Sorry to delay your beauty-sleep, but we're having some problems," says Katara. Toph opens her sightless eyes and stares up at her.

"What is it now?"

"What exactly is in that box?"

"Nothing. I told you that already."

"Well, Sokka's taking it to the extreme," explains Katara. Now interested, Toph sits up and leans against the tree she was resting under.

"How so?"

"Well," she replied, "he's started showing the box to everyone."

"And?"

"And everyone thinks he's crazy! He's acting the way he did when he had that cactus juice. It's completely gone to his head!" explains Katara, genuinely concerned. Upon hearing this, Toph gets up and starts walking.

"Well, I guess fun-time's over. Let's go cure Snoozles, shall we?"

"Thank you, Toph," praises Katara, following the earthbender.

"You always have to ruin my fun..."


"So, where is he?" asks Toph.

"He's at home, out front. He's running around like a raving lunatic," explains Katara. Toph then starts to feel a lot of vibrations all at once. She looks down at her feet, then back up.

"That's him, isn't it?" Toph wonders out loud. Before Katara can answer, they hear the crazy shrieks of Sokka. "Yep. That's what I thought."

"I don't know what to do for him," Katara said in a melonchaly tone.

"Who's he shown the box to?"

"Me, Suki, my dad... and that's about it."

"How'd Suki react?" spoke Toph.

"She kinda backed up and walked off. She wanted to give him a little time to himself," Katara tells her. Toph snickered to herself. Good boy, Sokka. You scared off Suki.

"Where's Aang?"

"He went off into the city somewhere. I don't know what he's doing..." she trailed off and glanced back at her brother. "We need to do something quick, before Sokka gets hurt."

"Hurt? By who?"

"Zuko."

"Zuko's here?"

"Yes," Katara confirmed, nodding slowly, "He arrived this morning."

"Well, we better go save Mr. Fire Lord, then, shouldn't we?"


"What the hell is wrong with him?! I get here and he shoves a box in my face! You should send him to an asylum or something," ranted Zuko angrily. Katara gives Zuko a death glare that shuts him up.

"The only person who I would send to an asylum, would be you," she growls. Zuko immediately backs off while Toph shakes her head in amusement. She exits the house and heads outside. Immediately, she's greeted by the lunatic himself. He rushes up to her, box in hand, Momo on his head.

"Toph! Toph! Look, I have a box!! It says 'Do Not Open', so I haven't opened it yet. I wonder what's in it? It could be anything!! Like something valuable..." rambles Sokka, hyper beyond belief.

"That's very nice, Snoozles. Now, give me the box," commands Toph. Sokka stares at her like she's the crazy one.

"No way! This is my box! Miiinnee!!" Sokka continues with his rant forcing Toph to roll her unseeing eyes.

"Listen Sokka, I know where you got the box."

"You do?! Who told you?! It was you!!" Sokka thrust a knowing finger at Momo, "You told her where I got it, didn't you?!" Toph sighs, all amusement she saw gone. She stomps on the ground, and Sokka goes flying into the air as the object so dear to him slipped from his grip. Toph held out her hands, the box dropping into it. Sokka lands a couple feet away from her. "NOOOO!! My box!!" he shouts in anguish. Toph opens it and shows it to him.

"See, Sokka? Nothing. There's absolutely nothing in this box," says Toph, and she drops it to the ground, clearly uninterested. She walks back over to Katara and Zuko. Meanwhile, Sokka had repossessed the box, and has stuck his head in it.

"There's got to be something in it!! Otherwise, it wouldn't say, 'Do Not Open'. Right? Right?!" mumbles Sokka incoherently.

Toph turns her head and says, "Hello Aang." The airbender walks over to the trio and stands next to Katara. He glances over at Sokka, the box still on his head.

"Why does Sokka have a box on his head? Did I miss something?" he asks, knitting his eyebrows together in confusion. Katara stares at Toph, who rolls her eyes yet again.

"No, you didn't miss anything. Believe me," she assures Aang, a bit of sarcasm in her tone.

"Um, okay..." he says, unsure. Katara turns to face Toph.

"Are you hungry Toph?" she asks.

"Always," she responds quickly.

"Alright then. Let's go have some lunch." She takes Toph's hand, and they go off to have something to eat. They pass by Sokka on the way.

"Toph! I know there was something in here!! You took it didn't you?! Didn't you!?" he shouts. Toph sighs, exasperated.

"That's not my brother. I don't know him," Katara declares, putting her hands up as if surrenduring. Toph laughs and continues on past Sokka to have lunch. Meanwhile, Aang turns to Zuko.

"Do you know what's going on?" he asks the Fire Lord.

"Not a clue."