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November 18, 2011
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This is chapter 3 ofby Avatarloki.
"Won't there be gossip?" Jin excitedly asked.
"There is enough gossip now," Zuko replied.
"Are you sure doing this will be okay?"
Zuko spun around to face Jin. She stopped walking. "Why can't I bring a friend home? There aren't any laws prohibiting an Earth Kingdom, Water Tribe, or Air Nomad person from entering the Fire Nation. And you will be safe with me." Zuko turned back around and continued walking. Jin followed.
"I haven't been out of Ba Sing Se for so long! Has much changed?" Jin grabbed Zuko's arm, and they continued walking.
"Oh my gosh!" Jin yelled, letting go of Zuko and running up to Appa. "Will we be going on him?" She was almost jumping up and down with excitement.
"Yes," Zuko answered.
Katara jumped off of Appa. "You must be Jin! It is wonderful to meet you. I am Katara." Katara enthusiastically shook hands with Jin.
"Nice to meet you, Katara. I hope to get to know you better on the way back to the Fire Nation."
"Of course!" Katara said. "Zuko, did you get everything for the trip?"
"I did," Zuko replied.
"Then we are all set!" Katara bent the water out of a nearby trough and lifted herself up onto Appa. Zuko held out his arm, motioning to Jin to let him hold her around the waist. When she was secure, he let out a fire blast from his feet, propelling himself off the ground and up onto Appa. Jin let out a small yelp as she was flown through the air.
Zuko landed on Appa and gingerly set Jin down. She immediately sat. Katara gave Zuko a little wink as he secured the bags. Zuko glared back, which just made her laugh.
"How long do you think the flight will take?" Jin asked.
"Only a little while. We will arrive before lunch," Katara answered.
"I have never flown before. On anything."
"It isn't that bad," Zuko commented.
Jin scooted over next to him. "Will I fall off, Zuko?"
He put his arm around her. "You'll be okay," he smiled. Jin looked up into his amber eyes then laid her head on his shoulder.
"Yip, yip," Katara shouted. Appa took off with a little squeal from Jin. She grabbed Appa's saddle and Zuko's shirt. Zuko held her tighter. Soon enough, she was enjoying it.
"Woooo!" She joyfully let out. Her hair flowed back behind her. She crawled over to the other side of the saddle and looked out the edge. "Wow," she murmured. "That is beautiful."
Zuko watched Jin. "Yes, it is." Katara laughed. "The scenery. It is very beautiful from the air." Katara giggled some more. Zuko's face turned red, which made his scar less noticeable.
As Appa flew down over over the Fire Nation capital, Jin almost squealed with delight.
"It's so beautiful! I didn't expect it to be this ravished though," Jin commented.
"That is from the few who have tried to revolt," Zuko said.
"And from the raid on the Day of Black Sun!" Katara exclaimed.
"Is that the palace?" Jin asked as they flew.
"What about that one?" Jin pointed to another house.
"Maybe it is--"
"You will know it when you see it," Zuko huffed.
Jin continued to stare in awe at the Fire Nation architecture. When the palace came into view, Jin was utterly speechless.
Zuko just smiled.
"Aang, this is Jin. She is from Ba Sing Se," Zuko introduced his friend.
"Lord Avatar," Jin bowed low.
Aang helped her stand up. "No need to call me Lord, and you only have to call me Avatar if you want. My name is Aang." He gave Jin a little bow. "These are my friends, Sokka and Toph."
"How ya doin'? It'll be nice to have another Earth Kingdom resident in Team Avatar," Toph punched Jin.
"Ow!" Jin objected.
"Forgive Toph, she can't see where she places her hands," Sokka apologized.
Toph punched him. "Hahahaha! I know that my hand punched your arm. And now, I believe that you are whining about it."
"Your powers of perception are mind blowing."
"You got that right!"
"You don't have any other Earth Kingdom residents in your group? I mean, I can see why you don't have many Fire Nation or Air Nomads, but the Earth Kingdom is so big," Jin said.
"Oh, Suki doesn't stay with us all the time. She has the Kyoshi Warriors to lead," Sokka interjected.
"You will fit right in," Aang comforted Jin.
"I hope so. It will be nice to have friends for my stay here," Jin responded with a smile.
"You aren't living here? I thought you and Zuko..." Toph trailed off with a mischievous smile. Zuko gave Toph a glare, which, of course, didn't faze her. Jin let out an uncomfortable laugh.
"I am, just, well...trying to get away from some stuff that happened at home."
"Well, make yourself at home! Stuff can happen here." Toph just laughed.
Zuko and Jin stared uncomfortably at each other. "Um... I should show you to your room," Zuko motioned to the door. Jin curtly nodded, and she followed Zuko out.
Right before Zuko exited, Aang caught his arm. "Zuko, don't try to force anything, whether you think it good or bad. Do what you are being led to do, what is right." Zuko nodded, and he continued out.
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