The trio exited the spiritual crossroads, and found themsleves once again around the dying campfire. Aang and Katara still ore shocked expressions, unable to comprehend what they had just seen. Jing Shi stood apart from them, eyes staring out into the distance. There was a long silence before he spoke, turning slowly to his young counterpart.
"So....are you ready?" Aang remained silent for a few moments before replying.
"Yeah, I'm ready", he answered. Jing Shi gave a small smile.
"Good, then lets get started". He dropped his bag to the ground and immediately began taking out various items. Katara and Aang gasped at what they saw. Jing Shi laid in front of him several stunning beautiful stones, a ruby, an emerald, a saphire, and a diamond.
"What are those for?" Katara asked, still in awe. Jing Shi looked up at her to answer, but when he did he noticed something, she was wearing the bethrothal necklace. Not only that but she had taken off her mother's necklace, and placed in on her right wrist. Aang slowly realized what he was staring at and gasped.
"Katara, why are you wearing that?" she smiled at him.
"I've seen the future, and lets just say I like it, alot" she gave him a kiss, and he blushed furiously, which was weird considering he had just seen a version himself who was married to her and had two teenage children.
"Wow kid, I'm impressed. You got engaged to her before you even went on a date with her! Way to go." Jing Shi slapped him playfully on the back, he only blushed a deeper shade of crimson.
"Ok," Jing Shi began rubbing his gloved hands together. "Now that I've irreversably changed the past, let's get working on the present shall we? The jewels are an essential part of the time travel ritual, all we need to do now is bend stone statues to set them in."
"Wait," Aang said confusedly. "Why are going back in time? I thought you said the way things played out made it so that it can't be changed." Jing Shi nodded.
"I did say that, but we're not traveling through time to change something, we need information."
"What information?" Katara asked eyebrow raised.
"How to beat Yin Ku," he answered pulling a large tattered book out of his back.
"You don't already know how!" Katara and Aang exclaimed at the same time. Jing Shi glared at them, very irritated.
"I already managed to survive her attack, harnessed light bending, and figured out how to travel back in time, I cant do everything at once". He flipped through the book until he came to the page he was looking for. "here". He said pointing to the elaborate illustrations on the papyrus. The two teens leaned over and looked at the page, on it were drawn four elaborate statues, depicting the great gods
"Why didn't you just look in Wa Shi Tong's library, you say you went there". Aang said, not being able to drop the subject. Jing Shi sighed.
"I looked but there was nothing there, Tong despises Yin Ku because he's the deity of destruction. Therefore he considers anything concerning him to be forbidden and chaotic knowledge. We however are going to straight to the source for our info." Aang's eyes widened to the size of Appa's as he realized what he meant.
"The monks?" Jing Shi nodded.
"We're going home kid, the monks are the only ones who knew the entire legend. If anyone knows a way to take Azula down, it'll be them. I'm going to target the most recent grand council after we left as our destination."
"Grand council?" Katara asked, being unfamiliar with air nomad customs.
"Its when the two councils of brothers and the two councils of sisters congregate at the northern air temple, its usually a big festival and all the air nomads are there." Aang answered his girlfriend, who nodded in understanding.
Jing Shi and Aang spent the next hour sarefully crafting the ritual statues. It was extremely delicate work, which was hard because earthebending was in iteself not a very delicate or precise art, especially the ay Toph taught it. Jing Shi stood up hen they had finally finished.
"Ok, now just a few finishing touches." He stood, and with a precise stomp of his foot a perfect circle was burned in the grass around them. With Aang's help he plsced them around the edges of the circle, and the trio sat down. "Now, here's an oppurtunity for our first lesson, I want you to ignite the crystals."
"H-how?" Aang stuttered, not having the first clue on how to bend energy, let alone light at will.
"It took me a long time to understand it too, but like all other forms of bending, it has something that it draws power from, like the moon, and the sun." Aang nodded in understanding.
"So what is it?"
"This is what makes lightbending so unique, well other than the fact that it can do nearly everything. Ths source that it draws its power from is unique from person to person. You may wonder how I know that considering I'm the only one.
In the library there were several books on when people still wielded energy. But it is always the deepest source of emotion, the literal fire that burns within your soul that gives you power." Aang sat in silence for several moments, trying to comprehend what this meant, but Jing Shi gave him a hint.
"The chakra of thought". Aangs head bolted up to meet Jing Shi's eyes in disbelief.
"The what?" Katara asked. Both of them looked at her, then at the same time slapped themseleces on the forehead. They had a lot of explaining to do. Jing Shi groaned.
"My memory isnt that ggod, but I'm guessing you still havent told her about that." Aang shook his head weakly.
"What are you talking about?" Katara demanded, crossing her arms, there was no way they were going to get out of this one. Jing Shi sighed.
"Let me tell her, I've already done it once before" he got no arguments whatsoever from Aang. The elder avatar turned to face Katara, and took a prepatory deep breath.
"Do you remember when he… I…. we, told you that it was Azula's lightning that blocked the final chakra blocking us from using the avatar state?" Katara didn't see where this was going, but none the less she nodded.
"It was a lie," Katara gasped.
"What?", Jing Shi sighed.
"We didn't want to…. We just thought at the time that it would ruin everything."
"What do you mean ruin everything!" Katara shouted, making both of them flinch, she was feeling hurt that he had lied.
"What blocked the chakra in the first place…..was you". Katara blinked.
"Huh? What are you talking about?" she asked, now completely lost.
"Guru Pathik told us that the final chakra was blocked by earthly attatchment, and to master the avatar state we had to give up the most important thing to us, and it as you." Tears slowly formed in Katara's eyes.
"You… gave up the avatar state….for me?" she asked Aang, who nodded solemnly. She wipped the tears from her eyes and smiled weakly. "I guess I should have seen that coming…thank you". She kissed him firmly on the lips, slowly making the kiss more passionate.
"Ok" Jing Shi interupted "as much as I love to watch a younger version of me make out, we have more important things to do. Like I said before, you have to use the chakra, reverse it, use it as a catylyst and make it multiply your power, not block it." Aang nodded, and slowly pulled the feelings from within, letting the love for the girl who sat beside him serve as fuel for power.
And within a moment, he was glowing a brilliant white, and a blue orb of pure energy floated between his open hands.
"You did it Aang!" Katara cheered, Jing Shi smiled.
"Good, now direct it to each of the statues, I'll take care of the rest" Aang sent the orb in four directions, igniting the jewels that each held. Jing Shi began chanting in a dialect that neither Katara nor Aang understood or had ever heard before, and then the ground fell out beneath them, becoming a swirling vortex as they plunged one-hundred and one years into the past.
Sorry if this chapter is kind of short, I just needed to get an update done soon, I promise the next one will come soon and be longer, happy reading!