Disclaimer: I do not own Avatar: the Last Airbender. But I feel I should note that I own this plot―heart, body, mind, and soul.
Notes: This is my baby of Avatar fanfiction. I go and I make every possible connection between Oma/Shu, Tui/La, and Zuko/Katara that one possibly can. I also have a field day with Koh (I like him, little creeper that he is) and abusing Aang (I promise not to be too mean). There is copious amounts of Creepy Swamp That Knows Everything, Destiny Is Crap That Stands In Front of TRUE LOVE, Spirit Bending = Baaaaaad JuJu, Zutarans Pray to Saint Jun, and Spirit Traveling Katara FTW. Also some King Arthur parrallels 'cos I couldn't help myself. If all that sounds like your cup of tea, enjoy!
"Oh, you think you need their help? Actually it's quite the other way around. Someone's going to kill them."
"What do you mean? How can I find them and protect them?"
"You've already met them, actually. Tui and La. Your moon and ocean. They have always circled each other in an eternal dance. They balance each other. Push and pull. Life and death. Good and evil. Yin and Yan."
"Leave me alone," Koh croaks somewhat pathetically. Another millennium, or had it only been a day? Oh, to be a fish like Tui and Yue (silly girl, insisting on her human name) with the memory span of…well, a fish. "I don't care about your petty problems, Avatar."
"Petty problems?!" the new Avatar roars. My, he sounds fearsome. "This is the fate of the world."
"It always is." Which is true, however much this youngling might want to deny it. "You are lucky that I am feeling despondent today. I could have taken your face with that outburst."
That seems to dampen the young man's enthusiasm. "Well…this is the fate of the world."
"Oh? What is it this time? Not that ridiculous comet again..." Koh eyes the Avatar. Another Airbender (he still remembered Avatar Aang of the child's face and villain's mind) and just as self righteous. But this one's eyes were a soft brown instead of a steely grey, and the arrogance about him seems taught rather than natural.
"It is…it is a matter that is both personal and public." The face stealer cocks a monkey's eyebrow before shifting to an old man. "I mean…you see, there is a war."
"I am so aware."
"Yes, well, the war."
"Which you haven't stopped, I might add."
"That's because if I do something bad will happen!" the Avatar yelps.
"You really do want me to steal your face, don't you?" An expression of schooled boredom returns to the Avatar's face. "Well, what's so bad?"
"There's this Chief. The Chief of the Northern Water Tribe. And they, the Water Tribe…they're fighting a war against the Air Nomads."
The spirit rolls his eyes. "I am quite aware, Avatar."
"And…my best friend. Her name is Jiang, and she and the Chief…"
"Chief Yakoda," Koh intones. Some part of him feels sick. It cannot be...
"Yes, him. Well, he and Jiang have this…this thing. They…well, I think they're in love. And if I stop the war, then they might end up together."
Koh is a very old spirit. He has been here since the very beginning, has seen nations rise and fall. Has witnessed wars of both human and spirit, has seen great tragedy and great comedy, has been privy to the most epic scandals. Has watched the story of the Two Lovers, repeated every fourth Avatar. The lovers who defy even death, who defy war and lies and hell itself for each other. The lovers who end invariably in tragedy.
The face stealer retreats quickly into the back. "Leave. Leave. I cannot bear it again. Not again. Never again."
"Please. An entire culture could be destroyed if you don't help."
Another time, another place, another tragedy on the brink. A dark, rusty chuckle comes from the depths of the cave. There is no real humor in. Instead there is a deep sadness, sadness the deepens yet further with his next words: "I cannot do it. Cannot watch again."
"Why not?!" the young man bellows. "What can't you bear?"
"You," Koh roars. "You damned fool. You can never let it go, can you? Even now. They are meant to be. Meant. I know. I have seen, have watched. And you! Every time."
"I do what every time?" the Avatar asks. He is surprisingly calm.
Koh, however, is finally cracking. "It's not just you."
"What happens, Koh?"
"You do not want to know, young Avatar. It is...it is too much."
"Please. It might...I think it might save Jiang."
JiangShuLaNanakiKupthikZuiOuranSamiQuekoJingNyaYsakaRimiLeeIshidaKolEstra...Katara. A thousand lives blurring and spinning and meshing. They blur save for the little Waterbender. The princess who led her very own revolution. Oh, she would want him to try. She would scream loudly and threaten him with a water whip. She would not stand for this.
"Let me tell you a story," Koh says. "It is about the old days, and the new days, and days in between. It is a story about two lovers..."