Avatar The Other Side Of Light: Chapter Five "Waking The Light."
Avatar Aang woke up in a cold sweat. He looked around at the ice walls only just keeping the sun out.
"Six months of constant sun, I think my house is melting."
Aang walked from the structure shirtless ignoring the cold and put his hand on his sleeping skybison.
"I think it's almost time to get moving again buddy."
Moving to a hill overlooking the small Water tribe village he sat legs crossed and turned his thoughts to another world.
In a heartbeat the spirit was before him, and it wore a strange smile.
"Hu, whats so funny?"
A wet snowball hit the Avatar in the back of the head, and Roku vanished with his concentration.
"OOOOO that's COLD!"
Katara's voice came from behind him as he comically ran back and forth shooting fire out of his mouth trying to dry off.
"Hahah now you feel the cold, why is that?"
"COLD COLD COLD COLD COLD COLD COLD COLD ! Aaaaaa. Nothing like a nice warm fire breath when your chilled to the bone. "
She threw his shirt in his face.
"Here you'll catch cold, and I can't bend that away. Oh and I came over to let you know you have mail."
Aang pulled his shirt on and looked confused.
"Mail? Oh that's right they were putting in that messenger hawk station on Whale Tail island. "
She handed it over, and he noticed the black band around it as he opened it.
"It's from Zuko, and it's not good news. Azula broke free, with help and made it off the island! Zuko was writing this as he was sending people after her, and hopes by the time I get it she's back in her cell. I'm going to need to get moving this is weeks old. Zuka wants to meet at Ba Sing Se where he'll be opening having a ceremony to formally open the messenger hawk system to the public."
"I'm coming along. This is Azula and you could use the help."
Aang was silent for a long moment.
"Katara I'M the Avatar you're not going to be able to follow me every time I have to go off like this."
She smiled just a bit, and spoke like shed rehearsed it.
"I understand that, and if I can't go I'm fine with that, but if I can I am going."
Aang smiled a bit himself.
"We'd better get packing then."
An air ship bearing the mark of the fire lord drifted over the Earth Kingdom capitol on a mission of peace, for the first time. Zuko looked out over the rolling hills and tried to forget his worry.
In the time since the war he'd been so busy he'd in truth started to forget about his sister...then people started getting hurt containing her. The first time was three days after Mother came home.
"How do you protect a nation and stay human?"
One of his adviser started saying things about "the legitimacy of the family line" and how "it would be better if she was banished" or simply gone.
"All that work to make the Fire Lord a good guy no one needs to fear and I need Mai to keep me from banishing the guy. Mai . . . I sent her into the dragons mouth."
"She's been there before."
Zuko turned to see his guards showing in two Suki and Ty lee.
"Great fire lord I bring the envoys of the 52nd Earth King. "
"The warriors of Kyoshi, I know them well. Assemble my personal guard in the throne room I'll need to speak to them before we leave."
The man bowed and spoke before leaving.
"Yes my Lord."
He then turned to the pair.
"Hello ladies been a while, hows things?"
Ty Lee chirped in an happy voice.
"I got a new headdress! I think that means I got promoted!"
Suki stopped herself from face plaming at the last-minute.
"Don't muss the face paint this is an important diplomatic mission. I mean, hello Zuko I . . .mean Firelord Zuko."
"Zuko works when we aren't in public. I'm guessing your here about my security arrangements?"
Suki got her head together, and Ty lee was just standing around looking bored.
"His majesty humbly requests your entourage stay in the inner ring of the city, and that you take only one scribe and one body guard into the palace. He will of course send bodyguards from his personal defense force to see to your safety. "
Ty Lee chimed in a happy tone of voice.
"That's us wont that be fun!"
He raised his one eyebrow.
"The Kyoshi warriors are the earth kings body guards?"
Suki spoke picking her words very carefully.
"After what happened with the Dai lee the earth king wanted someone as far removed from the city and its politics as possible. Kyoshi is at the other end of the earth kingdom."
Zuko was silent for a moment. He wasn't directly involved with "what happened with the Dai Lee" but close enough.
"The earth king is most wise. Seeing as you are in charge of security there is something you should know. Azula broke free a few weeks ago, and she's more than likely in the earth kingdom."
Ty Lee's eyes grew wide as she spoke.
"Someones getting burned."
Hu Jing labored over and apothecary grinding herbs, and distilling water as the great owl came to him.
"How fares our wayward Fire Princess?"
"The poison on the blade was strong. The antidote however, was given in time. Just to be certain, I've prepared a tea that should help, and not interfere with what she has already taken. The rest falls to time my master."
Wan Shi tong left with calm command.
"See that is doesn't take too long to fall."
Hu walked wordless to the chamber azula laid under ancient cloths deep in fever as her body fought the poison of the lotus, horrid even under the best of conditions. Hu knelt beside her and supported her head on his lap to feed her the tea slowly. He spoke knowing she would never hear his words.
"I have seen fools stand before histories current only to wonder how they failed. Chin the Conquer, Kurani of the Manchu, the Phoenix King. You are none of these daughter of Ozi, there is something inside you I've never seen in a mortal. It may well kill you, but you could move a world if you let it out. Why do both options seem to pain me? One you burn like the sun only to fall like an ember. The other you spoil on the vine and rot away. Why does this pain me? What are you?"
Wan Shi tong paged through a tome older than science, or bending. It dated to the time before time, that saw the chaos that give way to the spirit of "Chènɡ" preserving two worlds by becoming the Avatar of humanity.
"You did well enough old friend, but you took from ME! Something no one DOES, and now one of your humans will show the depths of the race you saved. What are they are there core, with it all striped away? Not one of the forgettable ones either that can make do with mediocrity. I found perhaps the last of a breed willing to risk the wrath of gods men both for the chance at shaping destiny! Whatever the choice Avatar you will regret coming into MY study and taking what was meant for scholars ALONE!"
The great owl looked down on the title of the book. "Bending souls."