Disclaimer: I don't own this awesome series which owns.


Five Years Gone
Prologue

Water. Earth. Fire. Air. After the Avatar returned, the four nations lived together in harmony. Though everything changed when chaos erupted in the Earth Kingdom. Only the Avatar, master of all four elements could help restore harmony to the world. But when the Avatar arrived, he realized the problem was too much, too complicated, too out of control for him to handle. Months passed, and the Avatar contemplated on a new plan. This plan has to work, because if it doesn't, the harmony that has just been regained may never be found again.

Breathe in.

And out.

In.

And out.

It was a ritual of sorts. A circle was formed, boundaries created by the torches on the stone floor, as the few people who gathered there sat cross-legged around the circle in both reverence and meditation. In the middle of the circle sat a teenager clad in green, and opposite him was a monk, dressed in orange robes with a single gold chain adorning his neck.

The monk's eyes tightened, before snapping them open to reveal a shiny blue light which extended across his arrow shaped tattoos and over the top of his head and down his back, as well as across his arms and legs. The monk rose to his feet and the people surrounding the circle found it hard to look away, hypnotized by the monk's ethereal form.

Suddenly, the monk threw his arms forward, one on the teenager's forehead, the other on his chest. A bright, glorious blue light shot up from the monk's tattoos, soon growing around him to form what seemed to be a heavenly aura. The blue aura covered his whole body, slowly seeping across his arms and onto the teenager's body in front of him, and soon both forms were joined in magnificent blue light, which shot up straight to the heaven's above.

In a bright flash, the light disappeared, the torches were extinguished, and the moon and stars above provided the only brightness to those on the ground. A moment of silence passed over the group until a soft, calm voice spoke.

"There." Aang said, as he straightened his posture, and for the first time in his life, Teo joined him, unsteadily standing up with the Avatar.

"It… It really worked!" Teo smiled in excitement, grinning whilst jumping up and down. "I'm walking!"

"And I'm exhausted." Aang said, as Teo hugged Aang, before hugging his father, and the other occupants of the Northern Air Temple who had gathered to watch. As Teo embraced the last friend, he turned to Aang, looking at him, uneasily.

"You did… you know… you did it as well, right?" Teo asked, and Aang nodded.

"As far as I know. I can't say I'm a master of energy bending, and I can't say I know much about it either, but what I do know is that I healed you, and you now can bend. I'm sure of it." Aang nodded.

"Are you sure that was necessary? I mean allowing Teo to walk is one thing but giving him the ability to bend?" The Mechanist asked, and Aang shrugged.

"My purpose is to restore balance and harmony to the world, and the four nations. The Air Nomads, if I may say so myself, are highly unbalanced in these times, and it is time to revitalize the Airbenders. As well as that, by giving Teo the power to Airbend, your people here at the Northern Air Temple have been marked as the future Airbenders." Aang smiled, as he thought on for the future. "Who knows, maybe the next child born here will be an Airbender, as well."

Teo still looked a little nervous, a fact that did not go unnoticed by Aang. "What's up, Teo?"

"So, uh… How am I supposed to Airbend, anyway?" Teo asked, and Aang laughed, realizing his mistake.

"Right, you didn't think I was going to leave you without at least teaching you the basics?" Aang smirked, and Teo smiled in response. "Well, firstly, Airbending, like any form of bending, all starts in the breathing."

As Aang helped Teo assume his first basic stance, they were almost immediately interrupted.

"Master Avatar, Master Avatar!" A rushing villager frantically ran towards him, bearing a parchment, breathing heavily, as if he had been running as hard and fast as he could.

"Calm down Eko, and tell me the problem." Aang said, as Eko apologized quickly, looking up at Aang with a very worried expression on his face.

"We just received a messenger hawk from the Earth Kingdom." Eko said, between deep breaths.

Aang searched his mind for any possible reason – was Toph in trouble? Had something happened to Iroh? "What happened, Eko?"

"It's the Earth King, Kuei." Eko said. "He was found this morning, dead… But that's not all… His body had been charred. As if it had been consumed by fire."

"But…" Aang said, processing what he had just been told, and letting the weight of it all fall down upon him. Eko stared up at him, waiting to see his expression in response to the bad news. Aang straightened his composure once again – he was the Avatar, this was a crisis and he was the one person in the whole world that had to stay strong. "Bumi. I need to talk to Bumi."

"That's another thing, Master Avatar." Eko said, showing Aang the parchment. "Upon finding Kuei's body, they tried to contact Bumi straight away, but when they tried to find him, he had already disappeared."

"Bumi's gone?" Aang said, as one thought circled his mind. "What in the world is going on?"


Cheers for reading, R&R as always. Though I'm pretty sure you've already done the first "R" if you've gotten up to this point.