Image used is: 'Come over here' by Kelly1412 on Deviantart- favourites/#/d4jsqf5
Ok, so I haven't thought A LOT about how to continue so I'm just going with the ideas I have. I know that after Zuko joined they were at the beach and then Souzins comet and all that jazz. Let's pretend that most of these events happen while their camping, um ya know like a space of time between the events of the end of ATLAB. Ok?
Man, I'm finally updating, makes me all warm and fuzzy inside
With out further ado the next chapter.
Zuko paced outside his tent deep in thought. The sun shined over head and beat down on him warming his core, giving him the energy he needed for the day. He had woken up late in the afternoon only to find that no one had been in the camp. He continued to walk back and forth, if there was trouble he would have been captured, so where were they?
"Looks like princess decided to grace us with her presence. Hows it goin' sparky, still sore from last night?" He heard the voice and let out a groan as he recognized the young blind earth bender who had given him quite the beating the day before; his back still ached from the memory.
"I DID tell you I would get you back for my feet." Toph said her usual goofy grin plastered on her face.
"Where is everyone?" He questioned ignoring her taunts.
"Alright, I guess your not much of a people person when it comes to conversation." She said to him. "They went out." Toph answered his question the smile disappearing from her face. He noticed her sudden change of behavior and asked if something had been bothering her.
"Awwww didn't know you cared!" She replied back to her normal self. Or so it seemed. "I'm fine. Even if I wasn't I don't think I would ask the burned exiled son of the fire lord for life counselling." she said with a wry smirk.
Zuko turned his complete attention to her and looked into her sightless eyes, ignoring how beautifully green they were. "I don't mean to pry but it's starting to get hard not to."
Her mouth formed into a thin line, she was obviously upset no matter how much she would like to deny it. "Leave it be My Lord, we have stuff to do." she stood and stretched.
"What do we have to do?" He asked confused.
"Good question." She replied
"What?" he said even more confused.
"Well, we are all alone today so might want to spend sometime thinking on what ta do. I'm going for a walk kay?" she said getting up and leaving the small clearing with a now very confused Prince Zuko standing in the middle.
Toph walked through the Forest feeling extremely agitated, why did everyone care if something bothered her? Even though she knew the answer to her own question she ignored it. Because they care. Yeah, right.
She breathed in the cool air relaxing and she thought back to earlier today.
Toph woke up to noise coming from outside. She sat up and rubbed at her eyes. Grumbling she crawled out from her earth tent and felt for the source that had woken her up so she could properly kill it. She hadn't been sleeping well lately and it did not help her mood. She felt movement in the ground and recognized Aang, Katara, Sokka and Suki.
Aang was tending to Appa and she felt his light feet touch the ground when he noticed she was awake.
"Good morning Toph." He said cheerfully.
"No twinkle toes it is NOT a 'Good' morning! What are you people doing out here! All of this noise woke me up." she said clearly agitated.
"Oh! ah, sorry, I didn't think that it would really wake you." He replied apologetically.
She let out a sigh and decided to leave it for now as Katara walked up to them.
"Hey Toph." Katara said happily.
"Oh? And what are you so cheerful about?" Toph asked.
"Ah, nothing really. Um we were going into town, And we need you to stay behind and watch camp for us ok?" Katara said, this time a little less cheerful.
"What for?" Toph snapped.
"Uh, well, um supplies?" Aang offered
"Why do I have to stay?" she asked skeptically.
"Sorry Toph but we can't really trust YOU to go into town." Katara said with an edge to her voice.
"Che, Fine! But Why do I have to stay here alone." Toph mumbled.
"Don't worry Toph, you won't be alone! Zuko is going to stay with you. We can't really take the son of the Fire lord with us, his scar is a little too obvious." Aang said giving her a reassuring smile.
Great. Why did I open my big mouth.
"Guys! We're ready!" Toph heard Suki call.
"Coming!" Aang yelled back and rushed over to his bison. But Katara stayed where she was. "Katara?" Aang called.
"I'll be there in a sec!" She called back, before turning her attention to Toph again. "Hey Toph? Is something wrong?"
"No. I'm Fine" she replied turning away.
"No your not. I can tell that you haven't been sleeping, don't shut us out we can help." Katara said stopping her. "You have been avoiding Zuko too, I don't get whats with you! Your're the one who vouch for him so much."
"Hands off Sugar Queen. First of all nothing is wrong. Second, about Zuko, your're not really one to talk, He really changed and is a nice guy at heart, there was no reason for you to treat him so badly. And even IF I had something bothering me, none of you would be the first to know." Toph said venomously, she could feel Katara's shock and hurt when she walked away, but she didn't care.
Thinking back on it, Toph felt a little guilty about the way she had treated Katara. She knew that Katara was only being a good friend and helping her, but even Toph didn't know what was the matter. It was true that she had been avoiding the prince but she couldn't help it, whenever the fire bender was near her she could feel a tightening in her chest, It made her feel incredibly uneasy. With a long sigh she gave up any further thought of it and readied herself to go back to the campsite.
Katara passed the small merchant shops in deep thought, Toph wasn't doing well at all. For the past couple of days she noticed the young earth bender had been sleeping and eating less and less. Troubled by this the Gaang decided to go out and buy her something nice, after all it was her birthday soon enough and it would make a good reason. Silently in thought she continued on her way until she stopped when something caught her eye. On an old rusty cart lay a beautiful necklace. It was a simple string up but it had chunks of emerald colored stone that decorated it. It would match Toph well, although Katara didn't know if she would care much about her appearance or if such a gift would be suitable.
"Katara! Check it out." Sokka said interrupting her thoughts. He held up a large object with a small carving.
"Sokka that's a rock, with a pathetic drawing you made." Katara stated flatly.
"Yeah! It's perfect and doesn't cost anything-argh" Sokka grunted as Katara whacked him over the head.
"I told him not to do it." Suki chided coming up to them.
"Katara!" A voice called as Aang landed beside them. "Sorry, I really wasn't sure what to get Toph, I mean..I don't know what a girl might like so..."
"That's alright Aang I understand at least you tried unlike some others." Katara said glaring at Sokka
"Any way I was looking at this." Katara said gesturing to the necklace she had spotted.
"Wow, that's beautiful Katara." Suki said walking over to get a good look at it.
"I just happened to walk by it. This is harder than I thought, getting a gift for Toph I mean." Katara sighed.
"Something tells me that this will be perfect." Aang said coming up with a smile.
"Well...If THE Avatar agrees, who says Toph won't?" Suki joked. Aang looked around confused as the rest of the group laughed, except for Sokka who sulked not being the one to make the joke.
They were interrupted by an old woman's voice "Would you be purchasing this young lady?" she asked her voice shaky.
"Oh ah yes I'm sorry. How much?" Katara asked.
"Well, this has been sitting her for quite some time. It is a very old peice with history. For you and your companions I'd say 20"
"What! Oh no ma'am we couldn't do that, it must be much more expensive then that?" Katara exclaimed.
"Oh yes we could! Don't listen to her." Sokka interrupted.
"Sokka!" Suki and Katara both yelled at him.
"What? Am I the only thinking about the future?"
"No but you are the only one NOT thinking about Toph." At this Sokka fell silent still grumbling about money.
"Hahaha, what an energetic bunch. May I ask who you will be giving this to?" The women asked them.
"Well, a friend of ours, an earth bender Toph, Is a little down and her birthday is soon so.." Aang replied.
"Ah, I see, I'm sure an earth bender would be able to appreciate it's beauty, so yes I believe it is a fair price." The women replied.
"But-" Katara tried to protest.
"Now listen young lady, I am far in my years and will not live for very long. This is my last piece of value that provesI was ever in this world. I would like it to find someone who will appreciate it. For goodness sake I certainly am not interested in money at this age." The women chuckled.
"I...I understand. Thank you so much." Katara said gratefully touched by the story.
"I'm sure it is safe in the hands of the avatar and his friends." The women replied taking the money Sokka reluctantly gave her.
"How did-" Katara fell silent at the knowing look the women gave her.
"Don't question the wisdom of old age. Now get going I don't want you hanging around here." She said shewing them off.
"Ah Y-yes thank you." Katara said quickly picking up the necklace as they began to head back.
Toph gave a large yawn as she sat completely bored. "Hurry up Sparky I'm hungry." she complained slightly annoyed.
"Yeah well deal with it, Why do I have to cook?"
"Because I'm bored and we are both hungry. You want ME to give it a shot? Don't blame if you break a tooth on a rock that happened to be in the stew."
Zuko didn't say anything he just sat there mumbling to himself. He began to start cooking with a scowl on his face.
"No matter how much you glare at it, it won't magically appear." Toph said nonchalantly
"Shut up. How did you know I was glaring?" Zuko questioned
"Do you really want me to answer that?" Toph said smirking.
"Actually I don't." He replied honestly.
A moment of silence past as Zuko concentrated on the food and Toph looked at the sky with sightless eyes.
"I wish Katara would get here." Toph said absentmindedly. Zuko only grunted in agreement, and the two went back into silence. Hearing a roar from the sky Zuko looked up squinting.
"Actually I think that's them." He said.
"HAHA lucky me! It's true what they say, speak of the devil and he shall appear." Toph said jumping up from where she was seated. Appa landed near them sending a gust of wind across the clearing.
"I'm glad you're finally here so I don't have to eat Zuko's poison."
Zuko's usual frown deepened at the comment crossing his arms he didn't say anything knowing it was true.
"Well, alright, it's a tiny bit early but I don't mind cooking." Katara said nodding her head. We can give it to her afterwards she thought.
Smiling Toph moved back to sit down and wait, but she was alarmed by fast footsteps coming towards them.
"Guys! We've got a visitor!" She yelled out before a man dressed in a dark black cloak burst from the forest.
"Where is it!?" he questioned, raising up a curved blade.
A/N: I do not own ATLAB