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Fanon:Chapter Four: Arrival at the Capital
Trials and Skills
Jason walked behind Ty Lee and Suki as they and the rest of the Kyoshi Warriors walked up the path to the Firelord's Palace.
"Was it just me, or was the admissions guy staring at us funny as we passed?" Jason asked, looking back down the path.
"Not everyone is happy about how things have changed since the War." Suki said.
"You mean that war you and Ty Lee told me about? The one with that crazy Ozai guy?" Jason asked.
"That's the one," Ty Lee said darkly. "That war cost everyone something. You should be glad you weren't here when it was going on."
"Hey, there was a war where I came from too. Though I didn't fight in it, we all still felt it." Jason replied.
"Well, let's stop remembering the past. That horrible war is over. Think about now. It's sunny, we're about to see some good friends, and best of all, I'll be able to see Sokka!" Suki said with a dreamy look in her eyes, as everyone else rolled theirs. They had finally reached the sprawling city in the volcano's crater. Then Jason was hit with deja vu; he had seen this place before, in the sky! This was the volcano city that Roku had shown him in his dream. It was much more beautiful down here than it was in the air, with all the lanterns and elegantly designed buildings. Finally, they were at the doors to the Palace.
"Okay, Ty Lee, Jason, and I are going to see the Firelord. I know you have wanted to come here. Some guards shall show all of you your rooms. After you settle in, you may explore, as long as you don't cause trouble! We are still the Kyoshi Warriors." Suki commanded, with everyone murmuring in agreement. A few guards ushered the rest of the Kyoshi Warriors into a building next to the palace, as one other guard motioned for them to follow him into the Palace.
The Palace was just as grand as the rest of the city, maybe even grander. As many corridors as they went through, there was dozens of more shooting off in every which way, like branches of a tree. Finally, the guard led them to a door, where Jason could smell fresh air from the other side. He realized that the door must lead to a courtyard of some kind.
"The Firelord and his... friends are in the garden beyond the door. May your visit be pleasant." The guard said, though Jason heard the tiniest hint of contempt in his voice. However, he decided not to cause trouble by pointing this out. And with a push of the door by the guard, they headed out into the garden.
The first thing he saw, actually more felt, was a massive rush of wind. With a quick jerk of his head, he saw a person... flying somehow on a glider. Jason has seen people do something like that back home. However, eventually they glide to the ground. This kid didn't glide down; he glided up. Somewhere near the flying kid on the ground, a girl was moving water like a snake, making it twirl and sometimes shoot in the air at the flying kid, who avidly dodged them. Nearby the girl, a warrior, two other girls, and another man who could only be the Firelord by his clothes, watched the spectacle with glee.
"I almost got you that time, Aang!" The girl with the water shouted, aiming a shot at the flying kid, Aang, who dodged it quite easily.
"You can't get me, Katara, no matter how fast you waterbend up!" Aang cried back, with the waterbending Katara girl focusing another shot at Aang.
However, before she could, the smaller girl near her said, "We have company," while pointing a finger in their direction.
Looking at them, Katara dropped the water, Aang flew down and landed, and the rest of them came over to greet them. Jason hung behind Ty Lee and Suki, unsure of how to greet the new people.
"Suki!" the warrior cried, and Jason guessed this must be Sokka.
Suki ran toward Sokka, and hugged each other. However, upon hugging Suki, Sokka saw Jason.
"Who are you?" Sokka asked with a glare.
"Why are you here?"
"That's right; you don't have a reason. You were following them, weren't you?"
"Wait, what!? where do you get that from?"
"From the fact that you don't have an answer!"
"Sokka!" Suki started.
"Yeah, back off! I just came here for some help-"
"I'll help you alright; help you get kicked out of here!"
The two started bickering angrily and were about to fight until Suki broke them apart.
"Sokka, Jason, stop it right now!" Suki yelled "Sokka, you're acting like a child. Jason, you better not hit my boyfriend or else!"
Jason and Sokka broke up. Jason walked back towards the door, while Sokka tried to walk back to his friends. However, they frowned and shook their heads, and Sokka was forced to walk next to Suki. Jason was about to walk out. However, the Firelord caught up to him and put his hand on his shoulder.
"You're welcome here. Please don't leave."
Jason paused, and with a gesture from the Firelord, walked to the other people.
"Hi, I'm Katara. Sorry about my brother, he's a bit of a idiot sometimes." Katara said.
"I'm Aang. Nice to meet you."
"Toph's the name, and get it straight in your head; Toph! Not To-fu, or whatever they screwed up my name as."
"And Zuko. So, why did you come here?" Zuko asked.
"Oh, yeah. Well first, will you seriously consider it?"
"Of... course." Zuko said, although he was hesitant. What did this kid have to say?
"Okay. Look, I'm... I'm from a different world. I came because I thought maybe the Avatar knew of a way I could go back home."
Everyone was silent for a while, until Suki broke it.
"Hey Sokka," Suki asked. "Do you believe him?"
"This isn't my call. I know there's a Spirit World, but another world like ours? That's stuff I'll let Aang decide if it's true. Though if he's lying..."
"He's not. I can feel it," Toph said, looking down at her feet.
"How?" Jason asked.
"Believe it. She's one of the most powerful earthbenders around. Don't mess with what she says." Ty Lee answered.
"Our problems might be linked, young Jason," a voice said from above. Looking up, they found a man sitting at a balcony above the garden.
"Chief?" Zuko asked.
"His coming may have to do with the scroll," he said. "Jason should come to the meeting tommorow."
"What? But this is stuff only we're supposed to know!" Sokka cried.
"But he may be able to help us figure out how to deal with the situation, and a possible way for him to go home."
"Fine, but don't expect me to be happy about it." Sokka grumbled.
"Good. Now all of you relax today. Tommorow might... stress you out." the Chief said, and with that he walked away.
"Well, what do you guys want to do?" Zuko asked a few minutes later.
"Well, he wanted us to relax today, right? Well, let's see what the new kid can do." Toph said with a smirk.
"No, my granny. Yes you! Or you don't want to know whether you can bend or not?"
"Well, I guess it wouldn't be so bad-"
"Great, lets do it!" Toph said with glee.
"What have I gotten myself into?" Jason mumbled as he followed the rest of the gang down to the center of the garden.
"Air is all about moving." Aang said, showing Jason the positions of common airbending moves, "In order for airbending to work, you have to be quick, versitile, always looking for another way. That's how an airbender thinks. Try making a small ball of air in your hands. That should tell us whether you're an airbender or not."
Jason copied the hand movements of Aang, and with focus, willed the air to form a ball in his palm.
Nothing. Not even a slight gust. It was like he banished the air.
"Oh well, Jason. Hey, at least you tried." Aang said, getting Jason's hopes up.
"Water is much like air," Katara said, as Jason stood knee deep in the pond. "It's very versatile. However, waterbending is more flowing, using the flow of energy in the water and yourself to move the water. A good waterbender knows how to use this energy to make thier offense into thier defence, and vice versa. Try moving the water to splash that bush." she said, poiting to a small hedge by the pond.
Jason tried to focus his energy into the water. With a massive arm sweep he tried to move the water. Instead, he slipped in the water, and with a titanic splash fell face first into the pond, while Sokka laughed hysterically.
"Don't worry if you can't waterbend," Katara said, helping Jason out of the pool of water. "Not everyone can be a waterbender. Maybe you'll get Earthbending."
"Earthbending is all about will, hard head." Toph said, pushing Jason down into a lower horsestand, "If you don't have the will the move the rock, it won't move. Earth is stubborn; you have to force it to move, or no earthbending." Toph said, while placing a good sized boulder in front of Jason. "Now, force that rock to move. Show it what you got!"
Jason aimed at the center of the rock, and hit it with all his power. But all his hand did was hit the rock. It got nowhere. His hand probably hurt more than the stupid rock.
"You're not an earthbender," Toph said. "Too bad."
"Fire is the element of power," Zuko stated, showing Jason how to move his hands to firebend, "It's using the fire within you and the heat around you that makes firebending work, as well as the sun. Good firebenders know how to harmonize this power with control. Firebending, unlike waterbending, requires fast, sharp jabs that overpower your opponent. That is how a firebender wins his battles." Jason copied Zuko as he punched the air. "In order for firebenders to bend, they must fuel their power, and then channel that power into the fire. Now, do what I showed you, and fuel your power into that one jab. If you are a firebender, flames should burst out."
Jason had a pretty good feeling it wouldn't work, as the other three didn't. But he still focused, and with a loud cry, jabbed his hand into the space in front of him. No fire came out though. Not even a spark.
"Dammit," Jason grumbled
"Don't worry Jason, not everybody can be a bender. Hey, Sokka!" Zuko cried.
"Lets see if Jason can use a sword."
Jason's sword was supposed to be weighted so it feel natural in his hand; however, it felt like a two-ton beam.
"Well, well." Sokka said with a grin. Jason was having trouble handling the sword, and Sokka had in mind how to make him... better.
"Okay, Jason. There's only one way a warrior can get truly better with a sword, and that's a practice duel."
"Okay, Sokka..." Jason said. He was still angry at Sokka about before.
"One...two....three, duel!" Sokka yelled, and with a quick turn, the two charged.
It was a quick fight. In three moves, Sokka had disarmed Jason and the point of his club-sword at Jason's throat.
"I see now. Your skills as a warrior are... bad. In other words, I just beat your butt."
Jason got angry and shoved Sokka's club-sword away, getting up quickly.
"If you really want to see me fight, let me use my hands!" Jason snarled.
"Oh, I'm so scared. You going to slap me?" Sokka snickered back.
"Umm, Sokka, I don't think that's a good idea..." Suki said softly, nervousness present in her eyes.
"Uh, what is she talking about?" Aang asked.
"Oh, you'll see." Ty Lee said, trying not to laugh.
Sokka charged at Jason and swung his sword. Jason ducked the swing and hit Sokka's wrist, loosening his grip on the sword. Sokka tried to thrust the sword down, but Jason knocked it out of his hand, which was in an awkward position from thrusting down. Jason then kicked Sokka's feet out from under him, and grabbing the fallen sword, pointed it at Sokka's necck, essentially pinning Sokka between the ground and the point of the sword.
"Who's bad at fighting now?" Jason sneered.
"Hmph." Sokka grumbled.
"Well, you made your dumb point, now can you let my boyfriend go?" Suki said, though she was trying hard not to laugh.
"Fine." Jason said, and let Sokka get up and gave him back his sword.
"Now that's what I call a fight. Sokka, you got owned!" Toph said.
"I did not!" Sokka protested.
"She has a point. He knocked you down in three moves, without using a sword..." Katara said.
"Well good for me. Anyway, I'm going to explore the city." Jason said, and with a quick walk went out the door.
"Is it just me, or did he want to leave?" Sokka said. "Maybe he's trying to-"
"Sokka, can you stop with him trying to do something horrible! Sheesh, are you jealous of him or something?" Suki asked.
"Of course not!" Sokka said, though his voice sounded unsure.
Jason was walking around the city, but his searching had led nowhere. He had seen a Kyoshi Warrior here and there while he walked, but other than them, nothing had come up. Finally, he found it. He knew there had to be at least one here. This was the city of Fire Nation elite, and if the person wasn't here, he didn't know where. With hesitation, he knocked on the door.
A man opened the door. "What may I do for you today?" he asked.
"I heard the painter Gyochi lived here. Am I right?"
"Yes, but what do you want to do with him? He is currently working."
"Oh, I'm sorry. I'll just-"
"Maiso, who is at the door?" a voice said from inside of the house.
"A boy looking to see you." Maiso answered the voice.
"Well, let him in! Just because I'm working doesn't mean I can't talk to my fans!"
Maiso rolled his eyes, and with a gesture let Jason in. The house was beautiful. Almost every part of the wall that had space was covered with paintings. One of a boy running up a hill, another of a woman singing, it was too many to look at the same time. Without Jason realizing, they had come to a living room. At first, Jason thought that the living room was a painting too, as the room was a swirl of colors from white to red to blue to black. But he realized that the room was like that because paint was on everything. In the middle of this color whirlwind was a man sitting down, who was staring at an easel in front of him. The man, who Jason guessed was Gyochi, was a bit... pudgier than most people, but his face looked like he was a little boy, with chubby cheeks, button nose, and eyes that twinkled with glee.
"So, I see you have noticed how the room looks." Gyochi stated, looking up at Jason.
"Um, sorry?" Jason said.
"Don't be. This room is simply a work of art. Works of art are supposed to be gawked at and, sometimes, criticized. It is the burden of every work of art. Why do you think people always criticize each other?"
"Oh, well, okay." Jason said, unsure of how to answer this unexpected little speech.
Gyochi smiled "So why have you decided to grace me with your presence today?"
"I wanted to ask you to paint a picture for me. Nothing fancy, just a family painting"
"Ah, paintings of the family are my specialty. So bring your parents along and I'll start." Gyochi said.
"Unfortunately, you have to, um... paint them from description. If you can't, I'll understand."
Gyochi was silent for a while. "Ah, I understand. Besides, painting from description is a true test of a good painter. Now tell me, what did they look like?"
The next day found Jason following the rest of the gang into the war meeting room of the Palace. According to what Zuko had said, this place must be where Ozai used to planned his war meetings. It was a bit... spooky and scary at the same time. Suki and Ty Lee had told him how evil the man had been. He wondered why no one else was a little creeped about the room; after all, they were the ones who had experienced it.
"This is why we are here today." Zuko said, putting down the old scroll on the table. "This is why we are all here."
"What is it?" Aang asked.
"A warning of past dangers, dangers that may become present." Zuko answered.
"What danger can fight the Avatar? We beat Ozai, what else can evil throw at us?" Sokka asked.
"Darkness." the Chief said.
"Just read what the stupid scroll says, Zuko." Toph said.
"Okay, but I don't think any of you will like this." Zuko said.
"We know. Just read it." Aang said.
With a deep breath he opened the scroll. The scroll had scared Zuko since he first read it. He didn't want to read it again, but he had to; this was important.
"Five millennium ago, the world was different from the place we know now. Instead of Fire, Earth, Air, and Water, people bended the light and darkness within their very souls. Thus, Ying and Yang were present in the young world. The great Sky Kin then rose from the city of Sepulcher and, learning from the great beasts that roamed the land, taught their younger World Kin the bendings that we know now, with aid from their mentors. And such, as soon as those techniques were taught, the World Kin split into six great tribes, united but split at the same time. But disaster struck this good world. Tensions brewed between the nations, and a great war broke out. However, the war ended quickly enough when the Lightbenders and Shadowbenders, who had stayed out of the war, made the other tribes realize the damage they had done to the world. Realizing their mistake, the other tribes journeyed to the highest temples, those of the Air Nomads, and prayed to their god, T'ai Su. Thier fervor was so strong, so resolute, that T'ai Su answered the prayers. Using his mortal body, T'ai Su restored the world to the way it was before the war, healing its wounds. But peace would not last forever. Something happened to Chih, the first shadowbender and leader of the Urukhai. Some say he was struck by madness, others say he simply was conquered by the darkness within himself. Whatever the case, Chih maniputated the Twilight King, leader of the shadowbenders. With him, Chih launched a war against the world. Unlike the war before, the Twilight War lasted longer. Finally, Chih launched a massive assault, a swarm of shadowbenders no one could stop. With hope dying, the Lightbenders once again prayed for T'ai Su to help. But this time, T'ai Su could not help, as his body had been used to fix the world ten years ago. But the spirit of the earth heard this prayer. With his power, he imbued a young monk with his spirit, thus creating the Avatar. Using his newfound power, he trapped Chih and the shadowbenders in a world between worlds, a broken, dark place. Knowing they could escape, he made a seal using Earth, Water, Air, and Fire, and closed it with Light. And such, the world changed. The Lightbenders had sacrificed their power so the Avatar could be formed, and the land of the shadowbenders had sunk beneath the waves. That was all we saw before the image faded. We know what this vision means, now we have to tell the rest of the world, so this menace is never forgotten. Memoirs of Namoa, Mi Tuo, and Fo Shindi." Zuko concluded, putting down the scroll
"Well that was long." Toph commented.
"How did they know all this?" Aang asked the Chief.
"They had a vision, the same dream for all three, and they knew why. Everyone, most importantly the Avatar, had forgotten the true purpore for why he had to keep the balance between the nations. Though they tried to tell the world, they were killed for thier money by bandits. We found thier memoirs years later, but by that time it was too late, we had hidden ourselves from the world already."
"So what's the problem?" Sokka asked
"The shadowbenders have escaped, that's the problem." The Chief said, and explained about what the dragons had done.
"Damn." Sokka said finally.
"So how did they break out anyway?" Suki asked.
"Maybe it was because of the war." Zuko said.
"Or when they wiped out the Air Nomads." Aang said.
"You're wrong and right." Jason said, causing everyone to turn to him.
"What are you saying? That they haven't escaped?" the Chief asked, very confused.
"Not yet, at the very least not all of them." Jason said, "the scroll said that when the first Avatar sealed them, they were about to swarm over the other nations. Now, if they had all escaped, wouldn't they attacked by now?"
"I guess." the Chief said.
"Exactly. What I think is happening is this. When this War of yours was being fought, it weakened the seal. The Air Nomads, like Aang said, were wiped out, essentially making the Air part of the seal 'disappear'. That could have created a 'opening' for some of the shadowbenders to escape from. Now, we need to figure out how they could make an opening big enough for some of them to escape, and making it bigger.
"So, your saying that-" Zuko started
"That we haven't heard from the shadowbenders because they probally are waiting for more to escape before attacking the world again." Jason finished.
"But how could they get the power to make a hole? The seal was created by the first Avatar, in his prime and full power." Ty Lee asked.
"Jason, what reason did Roku give you to come?" Aang said, remembering about what Jason had told them yesterday after he had come back from his walk around the Capital City.
Jason thought for a few seconds, "He told me that I had to flee because my world was...going..to be...attacked." Jason said, realizing what Aang was leading to.
"You think the shadowbenders attacked my world?" Jason asked
"It make sense." Aang said, "Roku didn't know what was going to attack. He usually knows what the threat is. Roku never knew about the shadowbenders, at least he never told me about them. He knew something was going to attack both our worlds. Maybe his past lives warned him, or something like that. Anyway, this might be what he meant when he told you you could go back and save them. They might be using the shadow from your world to break through to this world."
"So your saying once we beat them here, we might have to go to my world to stop them for good?" Jason asked.
"Exactly." Aang answered, "but before we do anything, we should go to the Nothern Air Temple. Sokka, the Mechanist still lives there, right?"
"Yeah, I visited him there a few weeks ago." Sokka said.
"We'll need to go there. The Mechanist can help us find a way to attack the shadowbenders. Then we find where they're based, and attack!" Aang said, raising his fist into the air.
"And save my world." Jason said, and with that the meeting was ajourned.
For the collective works of the author, go here.
|Book One: Air|
|Visions - - - - - - - - - - - -|