"Stop being such girls!" Master Toph roared in a thundering voice that did not seem possible for her small body to be able to make. Her teeth were bared in frustration as her earth bending students scurried away from the oncoming boulder that was shooting down a rock ramp again.
Kath was embarrassed to say that as the boulder reached the bottom of the ramp, and became on even ground with him that, he too, dove to his left out of fear. He stayed down on his knees afraid to look his younger master in the stormy, blue, unseeing eyes. The other men that had dodged the rock stayed down too.
"In line, now!" Master Toph roared, and the panting men scurried to their feet with haste. They lined up in front of their master with shameful faces, and heaving chests. A few fixed their uniforms in attempt to impress the master even though she was blind.
Master Toph strode by each of them, "I'm here to train men to fight in The Earth Bending Army. I am not here to babysit a bunch of babies that cannot stand a few bruises!" As Toph hovered in front of Kath he couldn't help letting his eyes roam over his master.
Her bangs hung unkempt, and its beautiful black color contrasted her calm blue eyes. The green tunics she wore that were meant for men could not hide her curves, but they did not do them justice either.
"Solider Trainee Kath," Master Toph said stiffly, "If I wanted to be stared at guys I would be a waitress. Do I look like a waitress to you?"
Kath turned bright red, "No, ma'm!" he shouted at her. She turned, and continued to lecture about how earth benders need to face their challenges head on. Kath silently cursed her ability to pretty much depict their thoughts by feeling their heart beat.
"Now! Are you ready to face that boulder…" Master Toph suddenly ducked as a rock hurdled at her head. She easily avoided it, and whirled to face the oncoming attacker, "Stand down!" she said to her alert students. She felt the ground with her feet, "Show yourself!"
Another rock shot towards her. She reached out, and crushed the rock in her fist.
Kath felt bad for whoever was on the other end of that rock.
"I wonder if the Blind Bandit has lost her touch?" Came an airy voice, and suddenly a man leapt from a large wall, and landed without making any sound. Kath nearly chocked as he saw the arrow tattoos that decorated the man's arms.
The man ran a hand through his shaggy black hair.
Kath shot a look over to his master, and saw something that surprised him. Master Toph was smiling.
"Twinkle Toes," she said softly, and for a moment a look of happiness and longing shined in her blue eyes before she took a fighting stance, "Let's see how my first student has progress without my training."
The men around Kath stirred excitedly.
Master Toph turned towards her students, "Leave the arena, but you should watch this. This could be the fight of a lifetime."
Kath left with the others for there was no arguing with his master, or you may get a rock to the head.
"Come," the avatar said returning her fighting stance, "Let us see if the student has surpassed the teacher."
"Ha!" Master Toph said sliding her feet across the ground, "That could never happen."
They faced each other for a long while, waiting for the other to make the first move. Suddenly, the avatar spun in a crouch, and rocks that resembled a wave raced towards her. She put both her hands up in a cross over her head, and the rocks split around her.
She stomped on the ground, and kicked seven rocks in a row at the avatar. He dodged the first three, crushed the fourth, and returned the other three in the form of shards. As Master Toph started to dodge those, he sent long pillars at her from all directions.
She ran towards him, and easily dodged the oncoming rocks. She suddenly dropped, and slid under a diagonal pillar on her knees, leaving a cloud of dust in her wake. She rolled to her feet to find that she had to relook for the avatar.
She suddenly leapt up as the avatar erupted from ground below her, and both him and earth fingers tried to grab her. She leapt backwards, and slid a few feet. The avatar quickly pulled himself out of the earth. Master Toph put a fist on her chest, and slammed it to the ground. A pillar erupted from below him, and shot him into the air.
Kath couldn't suppress a small smile. Even the avatar couldn't beat his amazing master.
Master Toph tilted her unseeing eyes upward as she waited for the avatar to come back to the ground. There was a long silence as they all waited for him to come back down, but he never reappeared.
Kath looked at his master expecting to see a look of victory plastered there, but instead there was a look of panic and worry. Kath watched in surprise as she started desperately feeling the earth for his vibrations.
Kath had never seen her so distressed.
Suddenly the avatar appeared behind her from a thick mist, and pinned her arms to her sides.
"Victory," he said rubbing his dirty face on his shoulder, "But that pillar sure took me by surprise." The look of relief and anger traded places on Master Toph's dirty face.
The avatar slowly ran his hands down from their place on her upper arms to intertwine his fingers with hers. He whispered something in her ear that was blocked by her wild hair.
Kath waited for some witty remark, or for Master Toph to fight, but instead she leaned her head into his mouth, and, did something that no one had ever seen before, she blushed. The avatar grinned happily, and reached around her to grab her chin.
He turned her face towards him, and, through his ability to lip read, Kath was able to see him say, "If you don't want me to, you better speak now." Master Toph didn't say anything, instead she pressed her mouth to his.
He saw the avatar blink in surprise, and kiss her back. The soldiers in training all watched the two possibly most powerful benders in the world kiss with more interest than they've ever paid to lessons.
The two benders broke their gentle kiss, and Master Toph seemed to realize that she was still in the middle of teaching a class. She bit her lip, and cupped her hands, "Ummm, class is dismissed!"
Suddenly, the class that has never once spoken out of turn, erupted in whistles and hollers. Master Toph turned bright red.
The avatar reached around the back of her, and gave her a playful squeeze. She struggled against him, but there was no real attempt behind it.
"Let go, Twinkle Toes!" she snapped but it was because she was more embarrassed, but could not hide the pleasure in her eyes. The avatar gave a cocky grin, and suddenly the entire arena was suddenly filled with a cloud of dust.
Kath leaned back against the wall. "Well, it looks like trying to win her is impossible."
"What do you mean?" one of the older soldiers asked.
"We can't compete with that," he said slowly, "Ever seen a girl smile like that?"