Hi guys! This is another Kataangy oneshot I got the idea for from a thread on (awesome forum, check it out!). It was about whether or not Aang and Katara should marry young or wait a while. It takes place about a year after my fic "Intoxicated" (which means it's been two years after the war.) Enjoy!
Disclaimer: I do not own Avatar: the Last Airbender.
Katara drummed her fingers against her knee. When she became bored at that, she lightly chewed on her bottom lip. When it became sore, she looked around the car in darting, swift glances. When a stretch of her peripherals had given her a small headache, she twirled her hair around her finger. When it got caught and took her a good two minutes to unravel the strands from her pointer finger, she began tapping her foot.
"Katara, will you stop it with all of the generic nervous habits?" Sokka finally snapped as the quick rhythm of her foot became too annoying to tolerate. "What's wrong with you, anyway? We're just taking a train ride into Ba Sing Se to go visit everyone at the tea shop for a while." Katara gave a sigh.
"It's been six months since I've seen Aang." She replied, a worried expression marked on her usually calm features.
"So? You look and act exactly the same." Sokka shrugged. "Besides, you guys have been writing letters and stuff."
"I know, it's just that…" she paused. "The last time I saw Aang his voice had already begun to deepen. And he's been getting taller."
"So?" Sokka questioned.
"So, what if he's changed some more? What if he thinks that I don't look any different? What if he finds me boring or something and meets some girl in the city and they…he's changing so fast, Sokka."
"Now you're just being stupid, Katara. Aang adores you, we both know that. He's never looked at any other girl. And this is your fault anyway for dating a fourteen year old. It's called puberty, Katara. He's gonna grow and stuff. Aang's feelings for you aren't going to change. If anything, they'll get stronger." Katara blushed and smiled at the thought, feeling a bit relieved. Sokka stood up as the train came to a halt and started for the door. "Here's the station. Suki and Mai should have come to meet us." The two siblings grabbed their luggage and squeezed their way past passengers to exit the crowded train.
"Sokka, Katara! Over here!" Suki waved them over as Mai greeted them with a smile. Sokka threw his luggage at Katara with a "hold this" as he sprinted over to Suki and hugged her enthusiastically.
"Need help?" Mai took some of the bags from Katara.
"Thanks, Mai." Katara gave a relieved smile and blushed when she saw Sokka and Suki…expressing their happiness at seeing each other.
"Sokka, Suki, stop sucking face." Mai snapped at the affectionate couple. They broke apart and blushed.
"Um…the carriage is over here." Suki ran over to the vehicle and opened the door. The teenagers loaded themselves and their belongings in and started towards the upper ring. Mai immediately took a seat next to Sokka, who gave her a disappointed expression. She rolled her eyes.
"You can make out when we get there."
"So…Suki…" Katara took a section of her hair and began to stroke it nervously, ignoring the couple.
"What's up?" Suki asked, curious.
"Well, I was wondering…who's arrived so far?"
"Hmm…" Suki took a second to think it over. "Well, Mai, obviously. Toph came with me, so she's here…oh, and Zuko arrived with Aang about a half hour before Mai and I left to come get you. They stayed in the fire nation for another couple of days after Mai left. I'm not sure why, though."
"They stayed because Zuko, Chief Arnook, and King Kuei wanted to speak with Aang about something." Mai inserted herself into the conversation. The other three teenagers looked to her with widened eyes. Sokka tried to find something to say.
"What? Kuei came back? But he was traveling-" Mai cut him off.
"Iroh went looking for him after they re-claimed Ba Sing Se, remember? He's the King again, Sokka. This was a national announcement; you attended his …re-coronation…"
"He got into the punch…" Suki interjected. Sokka glared at his girlfriend. Mai rolled her eyes. So THAT was it. Katara laughed and added,
"Well, what about Arnook? I mean, shouldn't he and Dad be discussing things having to do with the water tribes? I mean, Dad IS the official Chief now."
"Zuko told me that they had been writing letters. And this doesn't have too much to do with the water tribes, actually. Zuko reassured me that it was purely about Aang. That's all I know, sorry I can't help you more." A pregnant pause settled in among the group.
"Does Aang look any different?" Katara asked Suki.
"No, he doesn't. Not from three months ago when he came to visit us, anyway. But, oh man, is he excited that you'll be here. He wouldn't talk about anything else after he arrived."
"It was annoying." Mai added. Katara turned to look out the window so no one could see her blush. Sokka gagged.
"Hey, do you guys need any help with that stuff?" Zuko yelled out the window of the tea shop as the group arrived and began to unload their luggage.
"No thanks, buddy. We don't have that much anyway." Sokka replied as he walked up the steps. Katara followed him, practically skipping as she approached the shop with her luggage.
"Where are we staying?" She asked Zuko as he approached her and her brother.
"Uncle had some renovations made upstairs so we could all stay whenever we felt like it. I'm not sure which rooms are free, though. And besides, some are made to accommodate couples."
"Oh really? I wonder why your uncle did that…" Katara left the sentence hanging and a huge blush creeping across Zuko's cheeks. He turned towards the kitchen. "UNCLE! WHICH ROOMS CAN KATARA AND SOKKA STAY IN?" He yelled.
"SUKI TOOK ONE OF THE BIGGER ROOMS SO SOKKA COULD STAY WITH HER," At this point in his sentence, Sokka blushed madly, "AND THE ROOM NEXT TO AANG'S IS FREE FOR KATARA." Iroh responded.
"Well, there we have it, I guess. I'll find my own room." Sokka ran up the stairs, possibly to avoid any conversation that could ensue.
"Okay, Twinkletoes. Calm down. You've been shaking all day." Toph took a freshly poured cup of tea and gulped it down fast. Iroh shook his head as he walked past.
"Take some time to appreciate the flavor, Toph. And don't drink all of the tea yet, I wasn't even finished pouring it!" He moved his work to elsewhere in the kitchen with a glare as Aang twiddled his thumbs.
"Sorry, Toph. That must be annoying for you to see, but I can't help it. I haven't seen Katara in six months. I mean…I'm nervous. I'm happy, don't get me wrong…just nervous." Toph snorted.
"It'll be fine, Aang. Just shut up and try not to act like too much of an idiot." He opened his mouth to say something back to Toph when Katara glided into the room. Aang stared at her. She stared back. They smiled at each other.
"I'm gonna leave." Toph grabbed Iroh by the arm on her way out.
"Katara-" He took a step towards her.
"Aang-" She blushed and started towards him.
"Sokka!" Sokka said his name enthusiastically. The couple turned and glared at him.
"Did you really have to ruin it that way?" Katara put her hands on her hips, annoyed.
"Yes. Yes I did." Sokka slipped out of the kitchen with a satisfied smile. Katara ran up to Aang and gave him a long-awaited hug.
"So, after that, Katara had to bend me ANOTHER watch tower." Sokka took a sip from his tea and adjusted his legs, taking a moment so he didn't kick Suki by accident. "Zuko, Aang, what have you guys been doing the past three months? Mai mentioned some mysterious business involving the world's leaders that took place recently." Mai blushed and looked down at her feet.
"I wasn't supposed to mention that." She admitted shamefully. Zuko sighed and put his arm around her, giving her a reassuring smile.
"It's fine, I guess. It's Aang's business, really, and we were all going to find out eventually." He shrugged and turned to his friend. "Aang? Do you want to tell everyone?" The young avatar shifted around in his seat nervously, prompting many concerned looks from his girlfriend.
"Aang, are you okay?" Katara asked. He nodded, but his bright red face was a giveaway that he wasn't comfortable with the news he was giving.
"Let me guess: this thing has to do with Katara." Sokka said, annoyed. "Out with it, Aang. We all want to know." The teens leaned forward slightly when Aang finally opened his mouth to speak.
"Well, yes. I suppose it does. Well…the thing is…Zuko and the others have decided that without the air nomads, it's hard to get the world back into balance. And, even though there won't be enough for the world to be truly healed again for a long, long time, we all knew that the process of healing the world would take a long time anyway. Basically, I need to start up the air temples again…and…uh…" He trailed off and turned even redder.
"What is it?" Suki asked. Aang looked at the ground, averting his gaze from Katara completely.
"Because I'm the only air bender in the world…I have five years until I have to start…um…creating more of my kind." Sokka choked on his tea and Mai snorted into hers. Toph began to laugh riotously and Suki blushed deeply as she tried to assist her choking boyfriend. Zuko, Aang, and Katara tried to look distracted or busy as Iroh decided that they suddenly needed more tea.
"NO!" Sokka yelled when he was done choking. "THIS DOES NOT HAVE TO DO WITH KATARA!"
"Sokka, relax!" Suki hissed. Aang winced, bracing himself for the onslaught of brotherly protection. But surprisingly, Sokka projected most of his anger onto Zuko.
"YOU GAVE HIM ORDERS TO...TO...TO SEX UP MY BABY SISTER?! ZUKO, WHAT THE HECK IS WRONG WITH YOU? SHE'S ONLY-"
"Sixteen." Zuko calmly finished his sentence. "She's old enough to get married by water tribe standards. Besides, your father approved of this plan. He must have known that his daughter was involved." Sokka's jaw dropped in horror and he stuttered, trying to find the right words to say.
"Well, Aang's only fourteen!" He countered."He's not old enough to get married. Dad would have known that, too." He crossed his arms and smiled slyly in satisfaction.
"We don't have to get married or...procreate right away, Sokka!" Aang pointed out. "We can wait until I'm 19 if we want to!"
"Who knows if you're even going to be together for five more years?" Sokka asked. Aang's face fell and he turned away from Sokka.
"I do." Katara said firmly and placed her hand over Aang's. Everyone gasped and Sokka's eyes nearly bugged out of his head. Aang turned to face Katara with a smile lighting up his features.
"You want to marry him now?" Sokka asked, astonished. Katara rolled her eyes.
"Honestly, I don't have a preference about 'when.'" She answered. "I would love to marry Aang. Now or later, either one is fine with me. But what really matters to me is being with him, betrothal necklace or not.
I love Aang. I know it now and I've known it for a while. I don't think that's going to change. And I don't mind doing whatever I have to do to be by his side forever." Aang kissed her on the cheek and whispered a thank you in her ear.
"I love you too, Katara." Aang replied. "And I agree wholeheartedly. But I think we should wait a little bit. How's sixteen by your standards, Sokka?"
"Pfft. Whatever." Sokka muttered, frustrated. Suki swatted the back of his head.
"I think what he means to say is that he apologizes for over reacting and is willing to let you two make your own decisions about marriage." Toph groaned.
"Can we talk about something else, PLEASE?" She complained.
"You guys talk about whatever you want." Aang and Katara locked arms and started to head for the door. "I think Katara and I are going to take a walk." Sokka jolted and turned towards them as they headed out the door.
"I CAN STILL SEE WHAT YOU'RE DOING, NIGHTTIME OR NOT, AVATAR! KEEP THE HANDS OFF THE SISTER!" He sank back down in his seat.
"Wow. Someone needs a chill pill of the potent variety." Mai muttered as she took a sip of tea. Sokka ignored her.
"You know what? I'm gonna spy on them. I'll see you guys later." Sokka got up from his seat and left the room, taking off in Aang and Katara's direction.
"I'm kind of happy I don't have a brother." Toph reflected.
"Me too." The other teens agreed and finished off their tea.
Hope you enjoyed this! Reviews are greatly appreciated!