I'll Walk You Home
Give me a hand
The door flew open and Suki stepped into the house. Her makeup was smeared with dirt on the right side of her face. The rest was disfigured by lines of sweat and possibly tears. Her armor and uniform were also stained with dirt, sweat, and possibly small drops of blood. She surveyed the room with a twitching eye, the twitch matching the pulsing of a vein in her forehead. Her eyes finally settled on the sole occupant of the room.
Toph sat in a wooden chair in the center of the living room of the Gaang's house in Ba Sing Sei, she had tilted the chair onto its back legs and she had her feet propped up on the table. She was oblivious as to who had just entered the house or Suki's condition since Toph had no physical contact with her element at the moment. This was intentional on her part because ever since they had returned from their training sessions that morning Aang and Katara were out in the small garden behind the house "talking" and Ty Lee had been in the bathroom "cleaning up" and Toph did not want to be aware of any of it.
Suki focused on the Blind Bandit and with a scathing voice asked,
"Do you have to put those filthy feet on every table in this house?"
Toph now knew who had opened the door, recognizing the voice, and the tone, one that Fangirl had been using more and more these days. Toph thought for a moment, then, in a serious contemplative voice answered,
The blind earthbender tried to add a little gratitude in at the end of the word as if to say to Suki thanks for making me realize the necessity of putting my feet up on tables.
Suki's response was to slam the door behind her and storm off down the hall that led to "girls' bedroom". Toph heard a gruff,
"Out of my way!" from Suki, along with the swish of the warrior girl's hakama, as she went down the hall.
That must mean that "Peach fuzz" this was Toph's and Sokka's new name for Ty Lee, had finally finished her primping and was out of the bathroom
Ty Lee had joined the group in Ba Sing Sei to receive special Kyoshi Warrior training from Fangirl before journeying with Suki and Sokka to Kyoshi Island to join the rest of the warriors. Since the bathroom was free, Toph thought about cleaning up, but she had taken a bath not that long ago last week I think and she didn't stink that much, yet; besides, Suki was probably going to be using it in a minute or two and Toph really did not want to have to deal with an irate "Warrior Commander" right now. So she continued to sit with her feet up and started to pick her nose. That would be her concession to personal hygiene for the day.
Ty Lee skipped into the room, no doubt wearing something skimpy and pink, whatever "pink" was Toph thought. The acrobat was braiding her hair, and saw Toph sitting at the table, "Peachfuzz" did a one handed cartwheel, her right hand still holding the end of her braid, over to the table and sat down in the chair next to the earthbender.
"She really does not like to lose" Ty Lee said in a conspiratorial tone to Toph, referring to her new commander. She then looked towards the door and asked,
"I wonder where 'Cutie' is? It was just the two of them still training when we left."
Ty Lee tied off the end of her braid and flung the plait of long brown hair over her shoulder as she leaned in to quietly suggest to Toph,
"Or maybe we should call him 'Dreamy' now." The new warrior finished this last with a little giggle.
Toph did not know who this "We" was. She had never referred to Sokka as "Cutie" and she would never in her life refer to him as "Dreamy". She would call him "Meathead", "Snoozles", "Captain Boomerang", or maybe just "Stupid" but never "Dreamy". She did dream about him, but she would NEVER tell anyone about that.
Ty Lee rested her elbows on the table and placed her chin in her hands, and with a far away look on her face said,
"He really has changed since I first saw him."
Toph sighed, this was going to take a while since "Pinkle toes" (another name Sokka had for Ty Lee) had been in the bathroom for the last two hours with no one to talk to, (Ty Lee never talked with anyone, she was only capable of talking to people) Toph realized that she was going to be subjected to two hours of being talked to by the acrobat. Not only that, but since the earthbender was a girl, it was going to be two hours of "girl talk". All about feelings, who's with who, boys, do you think he likes me, and, since it was Ty Lee, most of it was going to be about Sokka, which was just going to be painful.
As the two girls sat at the table they heard the door to their common bedroom open and slam shut, then the door to the bathroom farther down the hall open and slam. Toph was glad she had decided to stay where she was and pick her nose.
The brown haired girl leaned into Toph and whispered to the earthbender,
"Not going too well at the moment, is it?"
Toph brushed her black hair over her ear to cover the blush that was starting to come up onto her face. She had been thinking the same thing over the last week or so. At first Sokka had spent all his time with Suki, but over the last few weeks he had begun training with other members of the group. He had even learned some basic knife throwing from Mai and double sword training with Zuko, before the two of them had left to return to the Fire Nation.
"Meathead", for all his stupidity and clumsy goofing around, was a real sponge for knowledge. As his leg healed and the cast came off he trained more and more. He had studied Chi blocking and gymnastics with Ty Lee, which had caused some caustic comments from Suki. Toph had taught him earthbending. He totally deserved that bite I gave him. Aang showed him airbending. and he learned waterbending from Katara. Of course "Boomerang Boy" could not bend but he had a way of adapting bending moves and techniques into his other combat skills. He was like a sponge, but when you squeezed him you never knew what would come out. Usually something entirely new and unexpected.
He had spent a lot of time learning the techniques of the Kyoshi Warriors from Suki, but their training sessions, as Sokka got better and better, had become less training classes and more bouts. Eventually turning into flat out brawls towards the end, escalated by Suki herself. As Ty Lee had observed the Kyoshi Captain did not like to lose.
"He must be a good kisser. Or else they wouldn't still be together." Ty lee whispered to the Blind Bandit.
Great! Toph thought , now I am going to be regaled by Pinkle toes , talking about Sokka kissing. Toph did not want to think about "Stupid" kissing, well actually she thought about it quite a lot, more and more recently, but she definitely did not want to hear about it, especially from Ty Lee.
"In the circus," the acrobat continued, "everyone said that the water people were the best kissers, especially the Southern ones." She moved even closer to Toph's ear and lowered her voice even more to say,
"They used to call the Water tribers 'wets'" She giggled at this and covered her mouth as if she had said something dirty.
"They said once you have a wet kiss you can never forget it."
Ty Lee squealed in Toph's ear after this last revelation. Then she added in a dreamy voice,
"I'd really like a wet kiss from cutie."
Toph covered her ear at the squeal, ostensibly to protect her sensitive hearing, but in reality she was trying to cover the blush, which had decided that her face was just insufficient space for it and had decided to move to her ears and then make the hairs on the back of her neck stand up just for good measure. A "wet" kiss from Sokka was a little too much for Toph to think about at the moment.
Ty Lee was just leaning back in to impart some new information to Toph when they both heard the front door open. Toph still couldn't tell who was entering the house but it really could only be one person, and her suspicions were confirmed when she heard her conspiratorial companion say.
"Well, hello there… oh my goodness Sokka what happened?"
Sokka stood in the doorway in full Kyoshi Warrior array. His makeup and uniform, like Suki's were also smeared and stained with dirt, sweat, and truth be told, tears, but unlike Suki, there was no doubt about the blood. The front of his face, his keikogi robe and his armor were covered in it.
"Noffin" he said in a nasal voice "I'th fime"
Ty Lee jumped up and ran to the only male Kyoshi Warrior in the world and grabbed the equipment bag, he was obviously having trouble with, off of his right shoulder and placed it on the floor.
Toph, although she could not see Sokka decided that the sound of all this was worth the noise of Ba Sing Se and put her feet onto the stone floor of the house.
"Fine!" Ty Lee screeched. "You're covered in blood!"
"Blood?" Toph asked
"Oh… thaa… a, well… a… Sudi brode my node"
"Again!" The two girls echoed one another.
Sokka gave an embarrassed little shrug which he followed with a tired "Ow".
Ty Lee took the Watertribesman's right arm and helped him limp into the room, kicking the door shut behind him. Toph came up to help him on his left side but he said with a small note of panic.
"Nodd the lefffd."
Toph realized that Sokka was holding his left arm stiffly to his side and was in obvious pain, so she backed off, while the brown haired acrobat helped Sokka to the table. He did not sit, but he put his right hand on the table and shifted as much weight off of his left leg as he could.
His leg had healed from when it had been broken during the battle of the air fleet, but it was still bothering him. He had made, well not made exactly, designed would be more accurate, a brace to help support his bad leg. Toph had metal bended the steel parts, and Sokka had had a boot maker put together the leather parts for him. It helped quite a bit but after a long day of very physical training his leg hurt like blazes.
Sokka reached up and tried to remove his head dress but was having trouble trying to do it one handed. The apprentice warrior beside him noticed and said.
"Let me help you with that"
Deftly, Ty Lee untied the head dress and put it on the table, Sokka's weapons, fans, armor and keikogi robe soon followed. She tried to untie his Hakama as well but he stopped her there, shirtless was one thing but he didn't want to be standing in his underwear in front of two girls even if one of them was blind.
Ty paused for a moment, yes Sokka had changed since the first time she had seen him in Omashu. He was no longer the skinny armed boy but was rapidly growing into a hard muscled, young man. She rested her hand on his chest feeling his chi course through his body, the warmth of his chest spreading to her hand and up into her own chest. She looked up and saw his impossibly deep, blue eyes looking into her own. There was a question in his eyes, and she thought of "wet" kisses in warm nights, to match the warmth of his skin.
"Dhy… Somethin wrong?" he asked.
Shocked, Ty Lee shook her head and returned to the here and now. She felt a furious blush cover her face up to the roots of her hair and down her throat to her chest.
"Your shoulder" she managed to choke out, "You've hurt your bad shoulder again."
"Yethh" he agreed.
"I'm going to get Katara" Ty Lee said as she stepped back and then bounded out of the room heading for the back of the house.
Toph turned her head towards the young man. She could now feel him, with her feet on the ground, but she could not get the fine detail that she would have gotten had she been able to see him. She could smell the sweat, dirt, and blood, and she could feel the way he was lopsided, favoring his left side, but she could not "see" the extent of his injuries.
Sokka knew that Toph was "looking" at him so he turned to her, smiled a weak, little smile and said
The two friends stood that way for a moment, then Sokka pulled out the chair in front of him with his good arm and sat down. He gave a sigh of relief as he took the weight off of his leg, then he looked towards his friend and asked,
"Coulth you give me a hanth Thoph?"
"Sure" she replied.
"Coulth you take my leff arm up by my bithep, and gently pull down and back when I tell you to?"
Toph stepped in and touched Sokka's arm, she felt him wince, then he helped by curling his lower arm around her waist. She felt her heart beat rise at the contact, and her brain start to circle the thoughts of his warm skin. Sokka was always warm to the touch, not hot like Zuko, or cool like Katara, always warm and inviting. Stop It! she shouted to herself.
She sensed Sokka curl his right hand into a fist and he forced it up into his left arm pit, it was obvious from his intake of breath that this was painful but he forced himself to do it.
"Okay, could you gently pull down and back on my arm?"
Toph gripped his upper arm. She felt the scars left by her teeth on his bicep. It was his own stupid fault, he shouldn't have picked me up, how was I supposed to know it would become infected. She had bit him very hard and still remembered the taste of his blood in her mouth before she had buried him in the arena floor. He dug himself out eventually she told herself.
Toph began to pull as directed, down and back.
"Yeth, like that." Sokka encouraged her.
"Harder" he suggested. There was a lot of pain in his voice but he wanted her to continue.
Toph lifted her right foot off the ground and planted it firmly in Sokka's side. She then started to really put her back into pulling on his arm.
"Yeth… thathh it!"
"More?" Toph asked a little breathlessly.
"Yethh… Oh yethh… oh…. Oh…. Now twist it a little…."
Toph could hear the strain in Sokka's voice, he was almost panting as he continued to encourage her efforts.
"Yeth… thathss it… like thath… more… harder, twisth, more, harder,almosth there, Oh Tui, almosth, twisth, pull,twisth,almosth,Yesth,YESTH!,YESTHHHHHH!"
Toph felt something slip in Sokka's shoulder and snap into place. She almost fell onto her butt with the release of tension but he was able to catch her with his restored arm and hold her up while she got her right leg under her again. The warrior pulled her into a hug and told her
"That wath great Toph, you're the beth, no lie, you're the beth!"
While they were hugging they both heard the bathroom door slam shut, they must not have heard it open while Toph was helping reset Sokka's shoulder, so they didn't know how long who ever had come out of the bathroom had been in the hallway. Then they both heard the girls' bedroom door bang open and immediately after heard it slam shut, as if someone had kicked it very hard.
Sokka turned to Toph and shrugged, to which the earthbender replied in kind, though she thought she knew who was slamming doors in the house. About this time Sokka saw Katara come out of the rear hall. As she entered the room she was coughing loudly and had her hand up to her eyes so she could only see a little bit of the floor in front of her. Behind Katara, Sokka could see that Ty Lee was, with a curious, excited, expression on her face, hopping up and down so she could see over his sister's shoulder.
"Sokka are you OK?" Katara tentatively asked.
"Much bether now, thanths to Toph!" he answered.
To Be Continued
Disclaimer : "Avatar the Last Airbender" the characters and the world were created by Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko and owned by Nickelodeon and Viacom or Paramount or some huge corporation. This is purely a work of fan fiction because I wanted to play in their world and I love the characters that they created.
Updated Note: I have edited this Chapter to clean it up. A huge thank you to Vox Populi who did a tremendous amount of work proof reading this story for me. (I incorporated most of your corrections but I left a few of my original tenses and words in just because I liked how they sounded.:-)
This is my first attempt at putting a fan fiction up here. Be Gentle. This is a Post War Tokka story about a journey Sokka and Toph take as she returns home to confront her parents. Hopefully it will be fun and have angst and action.
Criticism is welcome, I would like to get better at this.