Memories of times once passed flitted through the front of the young woman's mind. Stories told of a once proud man who was as gentle as a turtle-duck that often ran rampant through their ponds. The caring, yet stern face with grating hair pulled together at the top of his head, often worn as a symbol of his people, the same ones that had banished him, his wife, and their unborn child. That beautiful face turned harsh and jaded as he realized what his child had been born as, a bender of not only fire, but water as well. A creature that should not have even been given the chance to survive outside of the womb. Isolated and desperate the woman tried to care for her child in the best way that she could, despite the fact that her husband had abandoned them to die in the dangerous forest. Frightened, they traveled south, towards the great Southern Water Tribes.
Shortly after the mother perished due to the unending and treacherous winters held all year round. The child however became accustomed to the new legends and stories held throughout the tribe.
One such stories often told by the Elders was of the Avatar and his a many cycles. How all four nations had peace between them, led by the Avatar, master of all four elements. The world was led into peace and prosperity for many centuries, and suddenly the Fire Nation attacked. Killing off all the Air Nomads, pushing their race into extinction and creating mass genocide, using their people as examples. The only hope was the Avatar, the only being strong enough to put an end to this madness, yet he disappeared.
A hundred years had passed and still no sign of the Avatar has been made. Many having believed that he was never reborn into the cycle, all have lost hope within the water tribe. all except for two: Kagome and Katara.
Dip and pull, dip and pull, the process repeated over and over as the two canoes floated smoothly across the clear, icy water. Sokka and Katara, having claimed one of the canoes as theirs and the other belonging to Kagome. The three teens were fishing past the borders placed on the village by the elders, having decided that their current spot was unless in the art of catching fish. Having already caught enough for those belonging in her tent to last for a few moon cycles, Kagome easily say back and watched the current flow beneath her canoe with her arctic companion. Easily falling into a light doze she heard rather than saw how Sokka bragged on how a real man was able to catch a fish, although his inadequacy in the form is less than stellar, and Katara rolling her eyes at Sokka's boastful speech. Opening her eyes the tiniest bit, Kagome watched as Katara blended the water around a swimming fish, trapping it in the air within a bubble.
Hearing a rather large splash and Sokka's yelp of shock, Kagome heaved a big sigh, deciding to pet her companions fur once more, hoping that she wouldn't be involved in the fight that always seems to brew between the siblings.
"How is it that every time you play with magic water, I get soaked?"
"It's not magic, it water bending-"
"Yeah, yeah, an ancient art unique to our culture, blah, blah, blah. And you Kagome! Why do you even let Katara get away with this stuff! You can control your magic powers better! Yet I still get wet and cold, even though there is probably a master right beside me!... I always end up smelling like wet polar-dogs.." Sokka added petulantly
"... Katara?" Kagome tried to intervene.
"Kagome? Since when does she know how to water bend? Only the best of our tribe knows how and I'm the only one. Besides! What can she do that I can't already do better?"
"... Sokka?" She said in a stronger tone,
" Look, obviously, you need to get new eyes but I'm just saying that if I had weird and mysterious powers, I'd try to keep them to myself... Like Kagome."
"Um, you guys?"
"So now you're calling me weird? This coming from the man who makes muscles at himself every time he looks at his reflection in the water?"
"Sokka, Katara! L-" She yelled, although sadly interrupted by the squabbling siblings.
"Danger!" Kagome screamed at the two, as they turned toward the front of the canoes, they were all shocked as the fishers boat was rapidly pulled into the raging rip currents, speeding them towards the oncoming ice bergs.
Grabbing an ore and deftly maneuvering the heavy canoes through the flick of bergs was no easy chore for Kagome and Sokka. With Katara screening directions like a mad woman and an arctic fox digging her paws into Kagome 's scalp, they managed to safely crash the canoes into the middle of nowhere.
"You call that left?"
"Well if you don't like my steering the maybe you could have water bended us out of the ice" Seeing Sokka using hand motions with it was too funny, but the knowledge that if she were to get involved then she might not make it out of this encounter alive, Kagome kept quiet.
"So It's my fault!?"
"I knew I should have left you at home, leave it to a girl to screw things up!"
Knowing how bad the two siblings bickering could get, Kagome tried to remedy the situation, "Sokka, you went too far, you need to stop before someone or something gets hurt."
"So? It's true anyway! Haven't you noticed that the food storage has been low? Everytime I try to take either one of you, we never get any food!"
Seeing Katara about to explode, Kagome eased herself into a sitting position.
"You are the most sexist, immature, nut-brained - ugh- I'm embarrassed to be related to you! Ever since mom died both me and Kagome have been doing all the work! Kagome is not even family and she volunteers to do our laundry! All this while you've been playing soldier!"
"Have you even smelled your dirty socks!? Well let me tell you! Not pleasant!"
"Katara turn around!"
"No! That's enough! From now on both me and Kagome are done helping you!"
'Katara won't listen! The iceberg is going to break! Death by iceberg!' Kagome thought panicking, her eyes widening to the size of saucers
"Katara! Listen to me!" She placed both her palms in the air hoping to reason with Katara, "The iceberg!"
"No! You're on your own Sokka!"
The only noise capable of bringing back Katara from her self induced haze of anger was the large crack of the ice splitting. Being flung off the ice and into the freezing water was a terrible experience for the multi-bender, the horror made even more palpable as she was barely able to keep her fox Shippō from drowning. The last thing that she was able to hear were the frightened screams of Sokka's and Katara still safely afloat on the berg of ice.
"Okay, you have gone from weird to freakish Katara."
"I did that?"
"Yup congratulations "
"Wow.." Katara turned her head to the left and shouted the first thought she was able to muster, "Wait a second! What happened to Kagome and Shippō?"
Surging up through the water, and trying to get to air, was Kagome's main goals at the moment. The second she hit air and the blowing wind was enough to shock Katara and Sokka out of their frantic searching states, having them pull her up and wrapping their fur around both Shippō and her was the best thing that had happened in their short lived lives.
Suddenly a glowing light came from beneath them, and pushing the float they were on, a giant sphere. Inside the sphere I can tell their were two shapes, one incredibly huge and one so tiny, sitting in a lotus position.
"What are they?" Kagome said, trying to hide her amazement at finding to strange beings in a giant sphere.
Screaming in shock when the obviously young boy opened his eyes, Katara said "He opened his eyes! Kagome, we have to help!" Giving Katara's fur back to her and taking Sokkas' boomerang, we jumped across the floats and started banging on the ice.
"Kagome! Katara! This kid could be part of the Fire Nation!"
Giving Sokka a dry look Kagome said "Why would someone from the Fire Nation be trapped in a huge sphere of ice?"
"He could be a spy!" Sokka replied
When she and Katara hit the sphere as hard as they could, it cracked in two and exploded, sending a bright blue and white light high into the air. Sending water vibrations for miles, causing the polar-dogs howl to the wind.
Meanwhile, located on a giant ship of steel warriors caught in their training paused as they noticed a most peculiar sight. Striding towards the old man sipping gently on his tea on of the younger soldiers stated, "Finally. Uncle, do you know what this means?"
"I won't get to finish my game?"
"It means my search, It's about to come to an end. That light came from an incredibly powerful source! It has to be him!"
"Or it's just the ancestrial light!" Iroh said, waving his arm around and then once more sipping at his tea.
"We have been down this road before, Prince Zuko. I just don't want you to be disappointed. Please sit, why don't you have a cup of some nice and calming Jasmine tea?"
"I don't need any calming Jasmine tea! I need to find the Avatar! Helmsman head a course for the light!"
Simultaneously the girls both decided to huddle together behind Sokka their hair whipping about as fast as a whip. Although as the wind began to die down Sokka slowly turned towards the benders, glaring at them spitefully.
Gaining their feet the small group of teenagers watched cautiously as the young boy with the glowing features slowly walked towards them. Scaring them more with his ominous features.
"Stop!" Sokka said as he brandished his spear and Kagome positioned the boomerang in front of her as she would a throwing knife.
When the light disappeared, the kid with the glowing tattoos fainted, falling off the precipice and into Katara's awaiting arms.
When the kid had woken up and told Katara to lean in so he could tell her something privately, Kagome blanched, not even going to take him seriously as he had proved her reaction right by saying, "Can you go penguin sledding with me?"
"uh. . . Sure?"
Slowly an eyebrow hitches itself higher upon the pale skin of Kagome's forehead .
"What's going on here?" The kid said.
Screaming in shock when the kid suddenly "flew" into a standing position Sokka said "You tell us! You were frozen in the iceberg! " And as an afterthought he added "Why aren't you frozen?"
"I'm not sure." The kid said.
All of a sudden the group heard a growl, then seeing the boy run up the slope that he had fallen from the group could only think of one thing, 'What was that?'
Kagome, seeing the boy slide down the slope, ran to the top and gestured for the others to follow. Once they were in the, what was once a sphere, saw a huge monstrous looking beast with horns on the top of it head. "Cute!" Kagome said as she let out a shocked gasp, stepping a few paces back to allow the kid to wake up the strange looking creature. When she saw Katara and Sokkas' shocked looks she looked back over to see the most peculiar of sights. For it seemed that the kid was being slobbered upon by a tongue three times his size.
'I have reached comedy gold!' Kagome thought, clapping her hands together while smiling in evil glee.
"What is that thing?" Sokka said.
"This is Appa, my flying bison" replied the kid with a huge smile on his face.
"Right, this is Katara, my flying sister, and that's Kagome, our floating friend," Sokka said with a dry look.
Kagome and the young boy, seeing that Appa was going to sneeze ducked to the ground, when Appa did sneeze all the snot that flew out of his nose got all over half of Sokka, coating half of his body head to toe.
"So, do you guys live around here?"
"Katara don't tell him anything! He could be a spy for the Fire Navy!"
"Oh yes, he could really be a spy for the Fire Navy," Katara said.
Kagome finished the sentence by saying, "You can tell because he has that evil look in his eye," she returned eye contact with the kid, " don't you?"
Having the kid, later introduced as Aang, allow them passage back to their tribe by way of floating sky bison, Kagome positioned herself near the front on the saddle. Observing the quiet kid she took notice of his strange clothing, his even stranger tattoos, and his choice of weapon, a long Bo staff. Noticing the clear trade marks of an Air Nomad, Kagome asked "Aang, do you happen to know who the Avatar might be?"
When he had replied "No, nope, I have no clue who the Avatar was, although I did know people that know him."
Having her suspicions confirmed, she whispered a light okay and went back to sleep.
The next day Kagome woke up to Aang showing the kids how he can "fly" with his air glider, Sokka telling the kids that people can't fly, thus leading Aang to prove him wrong and gliding on the air currents, actually flying. Body jumping with amazement she turned to Katara saying, "Isn't he amazing! He's flying!"
A couple hours later had Sokka trying to teach the children of the village how to be "warriors", Katara helping her grandmother, and Aang goofing off.
Watching as Aang tried getting to penguin slide, and Sokka trying to scold him was very entertaining! Seeing Katara chase Aang after getting some fish and a waving goodbye to her older brother, Kagome sighed. They never really asked her to come with them on anything, she just seemed to tag along. Deciding to help the villagers by hunting some nice polar-dog or lion-seal she set off with Shippō hot in her heels.
Just as Kagome was about to get some lion-seal she saw a red beam of light fly into the sky, scared and shocked at what that could mean she ran off back toward the tribe. Hoping that when she got their everything wouldn't