A/N: Sorry for the late update, guys! I was procrastinating a lot and I am sorry. Well, enjoy the new chapter! Oh and if you haven't noticed... The story is kinda told from Azula's point of view, so if you wanna understand everything that is happening in The Search, I suggest you read it.
Chapter Twelve: Love Amongst the Dragons
Azula had finally fallen asleep, apparently through the night her brother had come along and set a blanket atop her body. Though, she could do without it at the moment as the morning sun beat down on her body.
"Azula..." She felt a soft hand rest on her pale cheek.
The ex-princess gave a quiet groan, sitting up and seeing who had called her name. She gasped, bewildered at her mother's appearance. "H-how..." she whispered hoarsely, throat raw from her sobs the previous night.
"How did you get the jump on me?" Her eyes wide, from foggy apprehension "I had everything planned out!"
Ursa stayed kneeled beside the young teen, looking at her with a pitiful gaze. "Give up this futile quest, my daughter. The throne is Zuko's-"
"No!" shouted Azula, instantaneously grabbing her head "Quit filling me with your lies! I am the rightful heir!" Her glare softened as her eyes became downcast "I-I was trained to become Fire Lord..."
"Your destiny lies elsewhere, Azula." Said Ursa, standing up.
Azula let out a crazed laugh as she stood after her "I guess I should be thanking you" she smirked "After all, you've spared the the trouble of finding you myself."
"All your life, Azula, you've hidden behind a mask that your father trained you to wear."
"I chose to wear it."
"You feared him."
"I fear no one!" shouted Azula, glaring at her mother with malice, forming a ball of electricity in her hands.
"Take off your mask, Azula. Realize the beauty of your true destiny."
She pointed the ball at her mother, ready to fire. "Why must you fill my head with... with your lies?! The throne is my destiny!"
Her eyes widened slightly, the ball of electricity in her hand disintegrating into nothing but a spark. "Isn't it?" her eyes looked so trapped, so vulnerable. "I-I mean... I have.."
Azula awoke "- I have proof!" She had grabbed Katara's wrist during her awakening, startling the waterbender.
Sokka threw his boomerang at her "Get your hands off my sister, Azula!" Azula had let go of Katara's wrist, blocking the boomerang with her own.
She had turned away from them and put a hand to her head. "Mother... W-where...?" She reached down to her boot to retrieve the letter, but her hand found nothing. Azula's eyes went wide. "T-The letter..."
Azula quickly turned around seething "Where is Zuko!" She shouted, forming flames in her hands. She growled examining her surroundings. The Avatar was missing from the little clique as well. If she finds him; she finds her brother and the letter. She smirked at the two siblings and ran off into the forest.
She had run through the the thick forest for a good ten minutes before she heard someone's voice. "Who is the rightful Fire Lord?" She ran in the direction of the voice. It was the Avatar's.
Azula jumped out of the brush "There you are!" she growled, clenching fists tightly as a surprised Avatar and Zuko turned to look at her. She conjured azure flames in her palms, a frantic look taking over her face.
"She told you to thieve that letter! Didn't she?" She began firing blasts of powerful flame at her brother and the Avatar "Give it back!" she shouted "I can't let her win!"
She continued to fire her volley of blasts and she heard the Avatar yell something she couldn't quite make out in her throttled state. She watched her brother say something to him before he ran off. Did he think he could handle her alone? Well... Maybe in her current state he could. She growled. If only she were at her full strength.
"She's not going to get away with this! Give it back!" she shouted, continuing her onslaught. He purposely landed on the ground, and began to spin; creating the move that knocked her off her feet in their Agni Kai. He was a fool if he thought she would fall for the again. She jumped into the air, avoiding the strip of fire and landing of his chest, grabbing the letter.
"Tell her this is my destiny!" she said as she went to jump off of him. As she was in the air, Zuko had grabbed her ankle, causing her to lose her center of balance and fall. She should have seen that one coming, she growled.
"from the day you were born," Zuko shouted as she hit the ground "you've put me through so much!"
He grabbed her by the collar, lifting his younger sister into the air. "Why, Azula, why did our relationship have to be like this!?" yelled her brother, eyes filled with hate. He turned, holding her above a deadly fall, his grip the only thing keeping her alive.
"This was her plan all along, wasn't it? She's probably whispering in your ear right now to throw me off this cliff to rid you and her of a burden!" Azula shouted at him.
Zuko's eyebrows creased, his sister was already too far gone, wasn't she? "Y-You're not making any sense..."
Azula glared at him, outraged. "All my life she's kept me from my true destiny! Don't deny it, Zuko! She told you I had the letter in my boot! She using you to help conspire against me! She told you to- Wait a minute..." Azula's body and face relaxed, dawning a look of realization.
"You've had the letter all night, haven't you? Why didn't you burn it when you had the chance?" Asked Azula, beginning to get into her brother's head. Zuko looked at her with a trapped look. "Tell me, dear brother, why?" He turned and let her down, beginning to walk away.
Azula laughed "It's almost like you want me to have it!"
"Look," started Zuko, putting out the fire they caused in the timber around them "we can spend the rest of the day, even the rest of our lives fighting each other. But it won't help find mother. Let's just forget about the letter until then. We need to work together."
Azula smirked "Are you actually on my side again, Zuzu?"
His eyes widened, looking back at her then looking forwards once more; beginning to walk into the thick forest. "Let's get back to the others."
The walk to the rest of the group was silent. They arrived quicker than expected. The scene that greeted them was the Avatar and waterbender putting out the fire she had created. Azula kept walking to the giant animal they called 'Appa'.
As she walked past, the olds of the bunch, Sokka, said to her "Nature hates you!" She chose to ignore his comment and keep walking.
"Aang," said Zuko "are we ready to leave yet?"
"You guys aren't fighting anymore?" asked the monk, only to receive a nod.
Zuko and Azula began climbing into Appa's saddle. "Come on, it's time to go to Hira'a."
"Are you louts coming or not?" asked Azula with a scowl.
The whole group piled onto Appa, beginning their flight to the small village. The group arrived quickly, getting off Appa. "We need to hide our identities," started Zuko "we don't want to attract any unwanted attention."
Sokka grinned, twisting some hair that he had stuck on his face "Ha! A fake beard made of sky bison fur! Classic!"
Azula's face twisted into a scowl "Get away from me! You smell like a wet possum pigeon!" she growled and looked ahead, seeing a large gathering of people.
"I thought you said this town was small? Why is it so crowded?" asked Katara as they began to walk into the crowd.
"It looks like they're doing some kind of play!" exclaimed Aang as the group made their way into the middle.
"I remember this!" said Zuko happily "It's love amongst the dragons!"
Azula and Zuko stood by each other and slightly overheard and old couple discuss how well the young man playing the Dragon Emperor was. Zuko looked down at his sister and smiled.
"Remember when mother used to take us to see this when we were on Ember Island? And later we would reenact this very scene?" He chuckled "I still don't get why I always had to be the Water Spirit, though."
Azula smirked, giving the closest thing to a slight smile she could "Obviously, I made a better Dragon Emperor."
The old man in front had turned around and shushed them, causing Azula's temper to rise "How dare you shush me! Do you know who I-" Zuko cut her off, grabbing a hold of her.
"Azula! Calm down!" the young ex-princess sighed and relaxed.
They watched as the play ended with a kiss between the main characters. After the finale, the crowd started to break up. The group decided that it wouldn't hurt to ask some people if they'd seen Ursa anywhere.
"Excused me," he said going over to the elderly couple that had sat in front of them "Do you by any chance know a woman named Ursa? She lived here many years ago."
"Ursa..." the old man scratched his beard in thought "Wasn't she the magistrate's daughter?"
"Oh yes!" exclaimed the old woman "Rumor has it she-"
The old woman as a man in a mask resembling the Blue Spirit's had run into Katara and Aang "Excuse me!"
Azula stood back watching the whole thing, they didn't think finding the wretch would be this easy? Did they? She shook her head at the scene. She will find Ursa. She will find her; and she will end her if it's the last thing she does.
A/N: AGAIN, sorry for the late update, I hope it was worth it! Anyways, I might do a filler chapter after the next one because I don't like making ALL my chapters EXACTLY like The Search. So, until next time