Ba Sing Se
Off We Go!
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Around the Avatar World



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Around the Avatar World

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Off We Go! is the first chapter of Henryjh98's new fanon series, Around the Avatar World. He is writing it for a writing contest.

Previous Information

Off We Go! will set the scene for this brand new fanon about traveling Around the Avatar World.

Here is some more information you might want to know before you start reading:

These three teenagers met a year and a half ago when they all wound up at the same inn, each one an orphan. They raised money and bought a house in the Lower Ring and have lived there since. The Pygmy Pumas belong to Kahn, mostly.

Kori-a young girl from the Northern Water Tribe, she is a kind and loving person. She is able to bend water, which is forbidden among her people, but she does it anyway. When the situation calls for it, she is a very stern, protective, and strong individual.

Kahn-Kahn has lived in Ba Sing Se his entire life. He cannot bend any elements, but what he lacks in strength he makes up for in intelligence, speed, and agility of both the mind and the body.

Soku-a runaway, but also a firebending prodigy from the Fire Nation. He hated the attention he was receiving and fled to Ba Sing Se, where he travels incognito.

Dudom and Gugom-the two most mischievous creatures in the world, two pygmy pumas who get into so much trouble that the three teenagers can barely handle them. They were adopted by Kahn a few years ago when he found them wandering the streets.

Gaidan-a middle-aged man living next door to the teenagers. He is very genial and always invites them over for dinner, as well as taking them to fun events. He makes his living as a carpenter and by growing his own plants.

Off We Go!

Kori lay on the ground, her hair splayed out behind her. Beside her, two pygmy pumas were stretched out, their tails slightly abutting.

Soku was splayed across a comfy bed roll, still asleep. A trickle of drool slid down his cheek and onto his pillow. Quietly, he snored while he rested.

Kahn was curled up in a chair, fiddling with some three-dimensional puzzle. He twisted and turned his dexterous fingers as he attempted to solve it.

Kori yawned and lifted her head. "Kahn, I'm bored," she said.

Kahn shrugged in response, but said no words. His eyes were glued to the puzzle. Kori rolled her eyes and muttered, "Figures," under her breath. She turned to her side and patted Gugom on the head. The pygmy puma purred in reaction to her soft touch.

"Kahn, where did you get that puzzle?" she asked, a question she had inquired many a time.

Kahn's eyes flashed up at her for a moment, and then went straight back to the puzzle. He seemed a little timid about revealing the source of his new trinket.

Suspicious, Kori decided she would carry out the investigation later. She stood up and walked over to a large clay pot filled with water. She took a stance and then moved her arms to the side in a fluid motion.

A stream of water flowed out from the pot, following the movement of Kori's arms. She pulled her arms back towards her and the stream of water moved backwards until it was hovering over where it had emerged from. Kori brought her hands close together and made them positioned as if she were holding a round object. The water formed an orb shape, occasionally flickering and flowing about. It resembled more of a blob than a sphere, much to her disappointment.

For several more minutes, Kori practiced her control over water until she decided she had had enough of her morning routine. She placed the water back into the jar, slid the top back on and turned around to face her two companions again.

Soku was still passed out on his bed and Kahn was still obsessing with his enigmatic puzzle. Kori huffed and moved over to where she had been lying down. She brushed it off and then sat back down. Cross-legged, she puffed her cheeks in and out as she sat on the floor.

A few minutes passed and then Kori said, "Kahn, would you like to go out to the market? It'll be fun to get out an about!"

A couple seconds drew by before Kahn made any action of responding. He turned to Kori, set down his puzzle on his lap and then breathed out noisily. "Kori, in case you haven't notice, I am trying to work on a puzzle here! Please stop talking to me so I can concentrate!"

She flinched at the harsh response and then stood up, a little angry at his distinct rudeness. "Fine then! I'll just go by myself!" she shouted back.

Kori snatched up some coins and then stomped through their small home. She pushed open the door and left it open, striding angrily out of their abode. Dudom and Gugom padded out the door after her, appearing to want to accompany their friend to the marketplace.

A few hours later, Kori returned to their home with a bag filled with foodstuffs. Moments later, Dudom and Gugom bounced in after her.

Kori sighed and then dropped the bag onto a rickety table in the corner of their house. A loaf of bread protruded from the bag. The tips of leaves for various herbs and vegetables could also be seen in the bag.

"Hey, Kori," said Soku, leaning against a wall. "How was the market?"

Seeking out a chair, Kori plopped herself down on it. "Those two little rascals almost ate a vender's merchandise," she replied. "And I would've had to pay twenty copper coins for whatever they almost devoured! Thank goodness they didn't."

Soku laughed loudly. "Now, Dudom and Gugom, is that how you behave?"

The two pygmy pumas whimpered and flattened their ears against their heads. They drooped their soft, black heads and then shuffled over to a corner where they both laid down, hoping the wooden floor would absorb their misery.

All three of them laughed, even Kahn, for he had completed the puzzle. The completed toy was sitting on a table beside his chair.

Soku shifted in his seat and then looked at Kahn, and then Kori. "Don't you sometimes wish we were off doing something in the world instead of lying here in Ba Sing Se?"

Kori pondered the question for a moment and then said, "Yes, I do wish that."

Kahn nodded, agreeing with Soku and Kori. Even Dudom and Gugom bobbed their heads up and down. It may have been a coincidence, or the pygmy pumas might actually understand humans.

Then a loud bang split the calm air and the door to the house slammed open. Kori screamed loudly, caught unawares, and leapt several feet out of her chair. Dudom growled and Gugom hissed, their fur raised on end. Kahn darted his head towards the door and Kahn jumped up from his comfortable position.

A man rushed into the house and then stepped once he was over the threshold. Kori calmed down as she realized it was just Gaidan, her old, friendly neighbor. "Gaidan, you scared me half to death!"

Ignoring her, Gaidan stepped forward with a huge smile on his face. He spread his arms wide, the smile casting invisible beams of joy throughout the room. "How would you all like to go on an adventure?" he asked, the excitement barely contained in his voice.

For a moment, there was silence, and then Kori said, "Well, Gaidan, what do you mean?"

Gaidan looked at her, puzzled. "An adventure awaits, young Kori," he replied. "I bought this magnificent hot air balloon and we can take it around the world! It will be fantastic! And I want you three to accompany me!"

Dudom and Gugom whined and then padded up to Gaidan, where they began to rub their necks against his legs. "And, of course, Dudom and Gugom would join us," he chuckled, patting their heads.

Soku shrugged. "Sure, I'll go. Sounds like fun."

Gaidan smiled even wider. "Great, Soku!"

Kahn shrugged. "I'll do anything to get out of this city of twisting streets," he answered. "Would we travel everywhere?"

The man's gray beard moved as he smiled some more. "Anywhere the wind takes us!"

Kori stood up. "Well, guys, let's think about this--"

"I have thought," Kahn replied, "and I have made my decision. Kori, you said you want to get out of the city. This is a perfect opportunity to experience the world!"

"He's right, Kori," Soku said. "Imagine all the things we will see, all the people we will meet! It will be fantastic if we do this. And better yet, Gaidan's offering us a free ride!"

Gaidan nodded and stroked his beard. "This is a once in a lifetime chance, Kori, and if you miss it. . . " his voice trailed off.

Kori thought about all the negative things that could happen, and then all the positive things. The pros absolutely outweighed the cons. She smiled and then said, "Let's go on an adventure!"

The other three people present in the room clapped and cheered at her response, especially Gaidan. He seemed exuberant about the trio agreeing to accompany him on his expedition around the world.

Gaidan checked the last thing off of the list he was holding and looked up at the trio. "We have everything we need," he said. "Food, water, paper, pens, bandages, all of it! I just can't wait till tomorrow!"

Everyone else muttered their agreements and then began to pack a couple extra things, odd trinkets and surplus clothing. Kahn threw in five or six different puzzles to entertain himself during the trip. Soku threw in a talisman, an odd carving, and a book containing some of his favorite stories from the Fire Nation. Kori also had a collection of stories, but these from all over the world, her grandfather's betrothal necklace (his fiancee had died before the wedding), and a stuffed animal of a polar bear dog.

Dudom and Gugom needed nothing, of course, as they were pygmy pumas. However, Gaidan had personally bought several fresh fish for them to eat on the first leg of their journey.

Gaidan turned towards the door. "I'll be arousing you all at dawn, so be ready for the Adventure of a Lifetime!" he said, walking out the door and towards his house.

Kori bounced up and down and looked at her friends. "Aren't you guys so excited?!" she squealed.

"Comes from the one who didn't want to go in the first place," scoffed Soku.

Kahn nodded his head. "I'm am anxious, a good kind, to get on that hot air balloon and see the world! It will be the greatest thing ever!"

Dudom and Gugom purred alongside their owner, as pleased as he was. Kori smiled. "I'm glad you think so. Gaidan is obviously ecstatic that we agreed to go with him. It's possibly the greatest thing that has ever happened to him."

Bobbing his head up and down, Kahn yawned. "I'm beat," he murmured. "We should get some sleep; we have an early day ahead of us!"

Kori and Soku nodded and they all prepared for bed. However, it was difficult for them to fall asleep, for their minds were rushing with the thoughts of what tomorrow and the next weeks of their life would contain.

"Wake up, sleepyheads, it's time to set off!"

Gaidan's voice echoed through the small house and Kori instantly shot out of bed, a beam on her face. Dudom and Gugom, who had been lounging beside her, jumped up also. Soku and Kahn took a bit longer to be roused from their slumbers.

Ten minutes later, the trio was standing in the front space of their house, their bags slung over their shoulders. Gaidan had his bag over his shoulder and a cart in front of him, filled with all the other bags and supplies they would need for the trip, as well as Dudom and Gugom lying at the bottom of all of the materials.

Monorail through Agrarian Zone

They hopped aboard and the tram quickly took them to a station three miles from the Inner Wall.

"Let's head off," said Gaidan. "The hot air balloon is a few miles away from the inner wall. If we start now, we can make it there in a few hours."

Kori, filled with excitement, followed Gaidan out of the door. Soku and Kahn, just as eager as their friends, were not too far behind. They quickly got through the Lower Ring and to the nearest monorail. They hopped aboard and the tram quickly took them to a station three miles from the Inner Wall.

Gaidan guided them off the monorail and down a steep ramp that led to the fields below. He then turned towards distant hills a few miles to the east. It took them a long while to clamber over the uneven, farmland but after much sweat and hard-work, they summited a large hill.

Right in front of their eyes stood a magnificent hot air balloon with a blue envelope. The basket was nearly twenty feet in diameter, with half of it taken up by a small hut. the burner was located right in the middle of the basket, and it was ready to be ignited.

"Where did you get this, Gaidan?!" exclaimed Soku, running up to it. "It's magnificent!"

Gaidan smiled. "My buddy found it and fixed up and sold it to me for a cheap price. Ah, this is nothing I will ever regret. The best twenty gold coins I will ever spend in my life," he added as he caressed the basket. He whipped around to face the trio. "Let's get this thing in the air!"

It took them about ten minutes to load everything into the basket and then coax Dudom and Gugom out of their comfortable position in the bowels of the wagon. Finally, when the six were aboard and the goods stowed away, Gaidan turned to Soku. "Light it up!"

Soku took a crouched stance and then drew his arms forward and bent his elbows. He then shot one arm forward and brought the other whirling around in an arc. Fire shot out of both of his hands and the burner ignited. The envelope began to swell up and rise seventy feet in the air.

Gaidan laughed giddily as the balloon rocked and swayed. It rose a few feet off the ground, but a tether prevented it from going any further. He used a long pole to unhook the tether from the ground and then coiled the rope up.

The basket of the balloon lurched the moment it was free and then straightened out, but Kori, Dudom, and a couple bags were all thrown to the side. They pulled themselves up and then prepared for the most exciting moment of their lives yet.

"Hahaha!" cried Gaidan, barely able to contain his inexplicable joy. Tears glistened in his hazel eyes as he cried, "Off We Go!"

And the balloon rose in the air and took off high into the sky.


  • The author purposely capitalized Off We Go!
  • Dudom, Gugom, Kori, and Gaidan all are characters from the same fanon

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For the collective works of the author, go here.

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