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|By Taekwond1||Part of thecontinuity.|
|The Penetrable City|
January 26, 2011
The gang arrives in Ba Sing Se and witnesses a horrifying sight. They confront Azula in the Palace and gain a chilling insight into the future of her plans...
Book 2 Chapter 2: The Penetrable City
When the Great Wall of Ba Sing Se came into view, it was a shock to everyone. No longer did the wall stand tall and firm of Earth and acting as a defense against the great city inside of it. The wall was crumbling. Entire sections had been eroded away, and the parts still standing were either charred and blackened, or else horribly distorted and destroyed.
"What...happened...here?" Suki asked, unable to grasp what she was seeing.
"What? What happened to what?" asked Toph, unable to see anything.
"This is just...I can't believe it," Sokka said, closing his eyes and turning away.
"Azula did this!" Zuko yelled. "That monster! This time she's gone too far!"
Her eyes shifted back and forth. One of the Earthbender guards was yelling at her to stand down. How cute....and pitiful. He should be punished for his insolence.
With a flick of her wrist a violent gust of air slammed the guard into the wall of the Royal Palace. The man slid to the floor, defeated. In response, the other three guards stomped the ground and raised rocks into the air. They punched the rocks at Azula, who merely said, "You'll have to try better than that," before sinking into the ground. She resurfaced behind on of the guards, placing her hands on his shoulders and scalding his skin with her Firebending.
"Aghh!" the guard screamed as he collapsed. With another flick of her wrist the air around her condensed into droplets of water, and with a demented scream of glee she turned them into icicles and sent them cascading down onto the two remaining guards. This was too easy, thought Azula, and I hear the Earth King is even more of a pushover...
Sokka leapt from Appa as soon as he neared the ground, landing in a barrel roll and then jumping to his feet, sword in hand and Suki, Toph, and Zuko in tow. The last time they had come to the palace, they had had to fight through hundreds of Earthbender guards. But now, the entire outside of the palace was completely deserted; not a good sign.
Toph led the way up the stairs up to the Palace entrance. They traced their way through the familiar hallways until they reached the giant ornate green door that was the entrance to the Earth King's chamber. With no time to waste, they burst through the door and into a scene straight from a nightmare.
A hundred guards were either unconscious on the floor, frozen against the walls, or crammed into the ground and unable to move. Azula, in all of her madness, had utilized the power of the four elements to destroy all of the Earth King's guards. Now she stood behind the Earth King, fingers pressed to his skull in a scene eerily reminiscent of a moment a year and a half ago a mere hour before the fall of the great city to the clutches of the Fire Nation. Only, now the Fire Nation was not at fault. Azula was insane, and more powerful than any of them could have even imagined...
"You have to stop this!" Zuko screamed at his sister. "This isn't right!"
"Right? Oh Zuzu," she tutted, clearly amused, "you've always had this problem. You want everything to be nice and perfect and right. But the world is not perfect. It's not right. It's evil! You trust people only for them to become your very downfall. Mai, Ty Lee, Long Feng, and you. My own brother!" She threw the Earth King aside. He fell to the floor shuddering and sniffling as he look upward at the deranged creature now standing on his throne.
"You all BETRAYED ME! And you'll all pay!" She sent a flurry of stones hurtling at Zuko. He covered his face with his arms as they pelted him and sent him crashing to the floor. Toph stepped in front of him and enacted a wall of Earth to shield them from the onslaught.
"FINE!" Azula screeched. "This town is a joke. They call it Ba Sing Se. The 'Impenetrable City!' As if." She hopped down and took a few steps toward the group, turning their rock shield to rubble with a wave of her hand. "This city bores me. The benders are weak and the civilians weaker. And why conquer this city? I've done it once before...but I will go to the one place that may be worth my time; the one place that the Fire Nation could never conquer in a hundred years of endless conquest. And I shall singlehandedly conquer it for myself!"
She shot into the air, blasting a hole through the ceiling of the palace as she left. Sokka helped Zuko to his feet as they mused this new mystery.
"Where is she going now?" Toph asked?
"...to the only place the Fire Nation couldn't conquer..." Suki recollected.
"The Northern Water Tribe!" Sokka cried with a burst of insight. "Quick, we have to get back to the North Pole!"
Again, so much fun to write Azula. :D
And in case you made the connection, yes the North Pole is where Katara is with Aang's body. Reunion? I think so... ;)
For the collective works of the author, go here.