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January 29, 2011
Zuko confronts the upsetting truth that Iroh knew of Ursa's whereabouts ever since her disappearance and never told him..
Book 2 Chapter 8: Iroh's Remorse
"So where is the headquarters of the Order of the White Lotus, anyway?" Toph asked. Appa drifted slightly to the left and she grabbed hold of the side of the bison's saddle with all of her strength. She would never quite get used to flying. She much preferred being on solid ground where she could see; flying on Appa always made her feel so powerless.
"The headquarters," Iroh began, "is on Whale Tail Island."
"Oh, yeah!" Sokka cried happily. "I know that place, it's down near the Southern Air Temple. We almost went there after Appa was stolen and Long Feng brainwashed Jet!"
"But you were in Ba Sing Se the whole time, weren't you?" Sokka said to the bison in a funny voice. "Oh yes you were, oh yes you were!"
As Sokka petted Appa's fur, Iroh continued. "It is a small island, so it is the last place anyone would think to look for the headquarters of such a large secret organization."
Finally Zuko couldn't restrain himself any longer. "But why, Uncle?" His voice broke. "I've spent so much of my life wondering what happened to my mother, and you knew the whole time!" He held back tears as he realized the weight of this knowledge. He had always been closer to his Uncle than to anyone else in his family besides his mother, and the knowledge that Iroh knew all along where Ursa was hiding and had never told him burned inside of Zuko like hot cinders.
Iroh's expression grew solemn. "I'm so, so, very sorry, Zuko. I always wanted to tell you, and many times it was almost impossible not to. But I had a duty to the Order to keep your mother's location a secret. Only now, since the fate of the world hangs in the outcome of the next few days, have I finally been forced to reveal the secret."
"But why did she never come back?" Zuko pleaded, unable to hold back the tears any longer. "The war is over..."
Iroh had no answer to this. He embraced his nephew and, choosing his words carefully, he responded, "We are almost to the island. Perhaps you can ask her yourself?"
Zuko did not answer back. He released his uncle and turned his gaze to the open expanse of sea stretching away in all directions, blinking away his tears and hoping dearly that the impending meeting with his mother would finally set his mind at ease.
Penultimate Chapter to the 2-part Book 2 finale. Sorry it was a little short, the finale should make up for it haha. ;]
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