This new era of peace if refreshing. I am able to relax, and my days are without worry. Without worry of learning new bending, or fighting some enemy. All I can do now is relax. Time has passed, over two years, and my fifteenth birthday had just passed. But I still feel like I am needed. I know of some places where the monks would want us to hide if something happened. I am not sure why I hadn't thought of that sooner. I am happy now, with friends and with Katara, who I love dearly. But I feel an emptiness inside. I am the last air bender, but I am not sure if I can handle that, not anymore.
Aang waved his hand, letting a small gust of air dry the ink, then rolled the scrolls. He shifted his robe, then put the scrolls in his pocket. Truthfully, he didn't want anyone to see that, not now. Not when everything has been going so well. The sections of the earth kingdom have been rebuild and restored. Everyone is happy at the moment, he didn't want to disturb that with this trivial feeling.
Aang was sitting crossed legged in front of his desk and jumped up sharply when he heard a knocking on the door
Knockknockknock, Aang heard. The door swung open to reveal Toph, who had dirt covering parts of her face and her arms, her clothes were filthy.
"Hey twinkle toes, dinner is ready." She told him. She turned and was about to walk away when she turned around, facing Aang. "What's wrong?"
"Nothing, Toph. Let's go eat," He said, maybe a bit harsher than he meant to, walking and brushing past her and walking down the hallway. Toph scrunched her face, than ran up to join him. In the past two years, he grew a lot, spiking up in height, and had grown more muscular, it was getting hard to catch up to him.
"Aang, don't lie to me, something is wrong. Why wont you tell me?" She asked him, walking quick to catch up to his long strides.
"Because I don't want to talk about it," he responded sharply, and turned the corner, opening up the large door with both of his hands. From the darker scene of the hallways, the dining hall glowed. The room was open, there was no ceiling, only wooden planks that ran across from one wall to another, holding up vines and flowers. The table was thick wood, as were the seats. This was one of two dining rooms, this one was used when the weather was real nice.
He immediately saw Katara, who was laughing with Sokka. The table was full of food, some Aang recognized, some he didn't. When Katara noticed that he came in, she lit up, smiled and waved, motioning for Aang to come. He went and sat down next to her. A few servants came in and brought drinks to them. Toph sat down next to Suki, who was next to Sokka.
"So I got a letter from Mai, she said that as soon as all of Zuko's meetings are done, they are both going to come back here to get away for a while," Katara continue in her and the others conversation.
Aang took a bit of something, swallowing it quickly, not even tasting it. It left a bit of sour taste. He was pretty sure that it was something with sea prunes in it.
Suki nodded, eating a bit. "I just got a letter too, from Ty Lee and the other Kyoshi Warriors. They just finished with a training session with the Fire Nation soldiers. I have an elite team learning different fighting styles from the around the world. They were coming here next to learn from the Dai Li."
Katara smiled. "Are they staying here?"
"No," Suki shook her head. "They are staying in Dai Li quarters, but they did say that they would stop by as soon as they get to the Earth Kingdom."
"So, I was thinking," Sokka started. "Dad is in the South Pole, building with some of the water benders. He said that the tribe has grown exponentially. Maybe it is time to go back, or at least start thinking about going back home. What else is there to do here?"
Katara thought about what Sokka just said. Since Sokka, Toph and her had traveled with Aang, they were part of the new council, called the White Locus Council. It was stationed on an island off of the Earth Kingdom shores, not far away from where they lived now. The point of the White Locus Council was to deal with international affairs involving all of the Nations. It consisted of the Avatar, and several others picked by the Avatar. As of now, Katara, Sokka, and Hakota represent the Water Tribes, Toph, King Bumi, and Haru, represent the Earth Kingdom. Iroh, Mai, sometimes Zuko, when he wasn't dealing with Fire Nation issues, and Ursa, who had rejoined her son just a few months ago, represented the Fire Nation.
"Well, Sokka, we do have a White Locus meeting soon," Katara brought up.
"I know Katara, but We have those only once in a while. What is the harm in going home for a bit. Don't you miss Gram Gram and all the other Southern Tribe members."
Aang kept eating, quickly, not listening. Katara said something about other duties here in the earth kingdom, about how the damage caused by the former Fire Lord Ozai was more extensive than they thought.
Aang was thinking of the mountains near the Air Temples, and the several caverns hidden inside them, and wondered. Are the grandchildren of some Air Benders still in hiding? Appa was itching for some exercise, maybe a trip, even if they can't find anything, was good for them.
Aang stood up, knocking his chair over. Katara looked at him. "I am going on a trip and leaving tonight."
Then he left, without saying another word.
Katara looked at Toph, with almost a hurt look on her face. "Aang has been acting so weird lately. He has been moody and distant, and almost angry."
"I have noticed that too. If he isn't in his room, he is out practicing air bending, more than any other bending. Toph, you were practicing with him, has he told you anything?" Sokka looked at Toph, who sipped at her soup.
"Nope, I am as clueless as you are," She responded. Katara finished the last few bits on her plate, then stood up, smoothing out her green robes.
"I think I'll go talk to him," She told the others. Sokka snorted.
"Good luck with that. Right now, getting him to talk is about as impossible as getting Momo to talk," Sokka said, pointing at Momo, who sat on a chair, eating some melons. Katara just glared at Sokka, who had returned to talking with Suki. Then Katara exited the dining hall and began to walk down the halls.
She reached Aang's room and knocked, then walked in. She looked at Aang, who wad on his yellow robes, packing some things in a small sack. Then he grabbed his staff and turned around. He stopped when he saw Katara. His eyes, which were hard and narrow, softened when he saw Katara.
"Tell me," She said quietly, walking up to him and hugging him. "Please Aang, tell me what is wrong." Over the past year, Aang had grown taller than her, her head met his shoulders, and rested on his chest. She could hear his heart beat.
"I…" he started.
"Listen, I can understand if you don't want to talk, but there is no way that we are going to let you go alone, to where ever you are going. Where are you going?" Katara asked him.
"To the mountains near the Air Temples," Aang answered. "I want to see if there is anything that can tell me if there is any chance that there are any air benders, or descendents of ones, that are alive."
"Okay. We will go with you." She nodded.
"But," Aang started, but Katara cut him off with a kiss.
"Give us five minutes, we will meet you by Appa," Katara gave him another kiss, then walked out of the room.
Katara ran to the Dining hall, interrupting the conversation. Suki looked up at her, as well as Sokka. Toph still slurped at her soup.
"Come on guys, we are going to the Air Temples, suit up," She said quickly, then disappeared around the corner. Sokka and Suki got up and ran out the door. Toph sighed and got up.
"Great! Another ride on the flying carpet," she complained, walking to the door.
They all walked out into the open pen, where Aang was sitting next to Appa. Katara fixed her black fingerless gloves and her blue fighting robe. Sokka had his blue robes, similar to Katara's, with his boomerang, and his newly crafted space sword.
Toph came out too, with her yellow and green clothes and bottomless shoes. Her shoulders were slouched and her face was frowning. She really didn't want to ride on Appa.
"Ready to go," Suki said. She had on her traditional Kyoshi Warrior uniform, minus the make up. Aang launched himself up on Appa while the others got on the harness.
"Yip, yip," Aang told Appa. With that, they were launched into the air, and set off to the nearest temple, the southern Air Temple.