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|The Tale of Two Gangs|
Book 1: Air
October 5, 2012
The aftermath of Ta Po's assassination. What is happening in Ba Sing Se now?
Chapter 13: The Tale of Two Gangs
Book 1: Air
Chapter 13: The Tale of Two Gangs
Earth Kingdom capital of Ba Sing Se.
The Earth King's adviser, is walking through the palace, a guard approaches him and salutes him.
"Sir, when is coronation?" the guard asked.
"Tomorrow." the adviser replied.
"Has Captain Wei, arrived back from Taku?" the adviser asked.
Barging in through the palace doors leading into the throne room Captain Wei and some guards walk in and salute the adviser.
"Captain Wei, I was just asking one of your men if you have arrived. Any reports?" the adviser asked.
"Water Tribe rebels have attacked the city of Taku, on the day of the Thirty Year War ending celebration, sir." Wei replied.
"And you repelled the invaders?" the adviser shockingly asked.
"Yes, sir. The Avatar was present and we helped him defeat the rebels off. The Avatar is also searching for General Senlin, sir." Wei replied.
"The Avatar? How did that go?" the advisor asked with curiosity.
"He went into the Avatar State and impaled all the rebels with icicles, sir." Wei replied.
Nodding his head he then asks, "And...he killed them all?"
"Yes, sir. All of the rebels who raided Taku are dead." Wei replied.
"Well that is good that the Avatar, took them all out." the adviser said.
Putting his hands behind his back crossed, the adviser walks away.
Meanwhile, in the Ba Sing Se prison two guards cut the rope of a prisoner with crow tattoos, with a kick to the back one of them pushed him in. And with haste closed and locked the door. Both of the guards gave each other high fives and walked out of the hallway. The jailor sitting down on a desk, looks up at the two guards who were laughing as they came out of the cell hallway.
"Wow, that's the twelfth Mousha Quan member this week!" the jailor said excitedly.
"What are the crime rates?" asked the jailor.
"Very high sir." one of the guards said.
"Well, ever since Ta Po passed away," said the other.
"Good job you two!" the jailor congratulated the guards. Reaching under his desk he pulled out two sacks of silver, and tossed one each to both guards. They both walked out of the jailor's office.
In the northern lower ring, a Xinxian de Rou approached a man hidden by shadows, throwing a soaked green bag on the stone table of the man. The man's grayish hands open the bag, as he stands up.
Now revealing the man whose skin appears to be a grayish color, with grey hair, golden eyes and a strange tattoo on his forehead which is the form of an eye, he tosses the bag into a nearby fireplace. Walking over the tall, muscular old man kneels down behind a couple of crates grabbing a large sack of gold tosses it to the initiate.
Standing up he opens a lectern and takes out a scroll, tossing the scroll to the Xinxian de Rou. The Xinxian de Rou opens the scroll, reads it then smiles, bowing down to the man with the third-eye tattoo, turning around attempting to walk away.
"Wait," said the man.
"Yes, Fanzui de laoban?" the Xinxian de Rou asked.
"Tell me, what is the purpose of our gang?" the Fanzui de laoban asked.
"Well, our great gang's purpose is to take control of the whole lower ring, and then move up each ring in time and control all of Ba Sing Se. We also want to be the richest gang here in Ba Sing Se, and one of main purposes is to take out Baotu of the Dixia gang, and the leader of the Hei Shichang gang." the Xinxian de Rou replied.
"What is his name?" asked the crime boss.
"Well no one within our gang except you and your Muzhis know his name," replied the Xinxian de Rou.
"Correct. Who was the man who established this gang?" asked the crime boss.
"You sir," replied the Xinxian de Rou, gulping.
"You sir? I don't think there is a man named you sir here," he said.
"Our grand leader, Shan-Yu," replied the initiate.
"Good. Go, go complete your contract!" shouted Shan-Yu.
Saluting and bowing the initiate runs out of the room.
Meanwhile, in the Dixia headquarters, Qian Zei is seen speaking to Baotu.
"The coronation is tomorrow, Baotu. All of the city will be empty except the Upper Ring. All the citizens will be attending the coronation. It is a must that we raid the Mousha Quan compound." Qian Zei suggested.
"You're right, friend. But where in the hell is its location?" shouted Baotu.
Meanwhile again, on the roof of a house, one of the Dixia gang members is holding an arrow aiming in certain direction. All of a sudden a scream of pain is heard, then a gasp for air. The archer grins and begins to run on the rooftops, and slides down a sewer tunnel.
Meanwhile once more, back at the headquarters, one of the guards earthbends the hidden door, there appears the archer who had just shot an arrow at someone.
"What is it that you sug-" Baotu is cut off instantly as the archer arrives. He bows down to Baotu.
"Fanzui de laoban, the tactian of the Mousha Quan is dead." the archer said.
"What?!" Baotu shouted.
"I murdered their tactian, sir." the archer replied again.
"Well, I was about to suggest that we send a bing to stalk and execute the tactian of the Mousha Quan. But apparently, it was done uncontracted. Good job, Bing." Baotu excitedly said clapping his hands, throwing a sack of gold to the archer.
"It was an honor to do such a task, Fanzui de laoban." the archer said, bowing down to Baotu.
The afternoon auburn sky hits the city of Ba Sing Se, birds flying back to their nests, to return to their families. Children are just leaving their school grounds, and fathers are just leaving work, mothers are cooking lunches or dinners, and some folks who work in the afternoons are just leaving their homes for work.
By the tunnel leading into the Dixia headquarters was a Xinxian de Rou of the Mousha Quan, all of a sudden a bing from the Dixia gang jumped out of nowhere, and held the blade against the Xinxian de Rou's neck.
"Give me a reason not to kill you, Kexing," said the Bing of the Dixia gang.
Struggling to get out of the bing's grip, the xinxian de rou begins to cough. "Take me to your fanzui de laoban I'm here to help," said the Xinxian de Rou.
Grabbing the handle of his sword the bing knocks out the xinxian de rou. Back inside the headquarters he emerges from the hidden door, and the bing throws the Mousha Quan initiate on the ground. Slapping him hard in the face, the xinxian de rou awakens and looks up at Baotu who had approached him.
"Why is there a Kexing, in my hideout?!" Baotu yelled at the bing.
"I saw him snooping around the tunnels, sir." the bing replied gulping in terror.
"Grand fanzui de laoban of the Dixia gang, I...I...I cannot handle the madness in the Mousha Quan...I...I must tell you something..." the xinxian de rou said, cringing from the crime boss.
"What is it?! Or so help me I will kill you where you stand!" shouted Baotu.
"The Mousha Quan compound, it's on the top right northern corner of the lower ring. Sh...Shan-Yu, is there and he's not expecting anything right now...he'll leave onto the streets in a bit...af...after all the citizens are in the Upper Ring, he and his gang members will raid homes and ransack them of their valuables. Starting with the heart of the southern lower rin-" the xinxian de rou was cut off by Baotu.
"No, the Mousha Quan are going to raid the Hei Shichang gang headquarters! We have to stop those, Kexings!" Baotu yelled.
"I will fight by your side, fanzui. If you wish?" said the traitor.
"I didn't do anything yet with the Mousha Quan, I haven't done my contract...let me join your gang, let me earn my armadillo lion tattoo." demanded the xinxian de rou.
"Your wish will be granted, IF you serve my gang in the raid tonight," replied Baotu.
"Thank you, thank you, sir." the xinxian de rou bowed then walked off.
"Tonight, we will raid the northern lower ring, and assassinate Shan-Yu!" yelled Baotu. His booming voice was heard throughout the whole hideout. Gang members be it Xinxian de Rous, Jijians, Bings, Gaoji renyuans, or the Fanzui's Muzhis, they all cheered to the announcement.
"Shall I send a Jijian to Dufan the Jijian of the Hei Shichang, Baotu?" asked Qian Zei.
"Yes. Go for it, we need the aid of the Hei Shichang if we're to defeat the Mousha Quan." Baotu replied.
"Any Jijians, up for a task?" shouted Qian Zei.
A young man in brown clothing runs up to Qian Zei, and bows to him. "Tell Dufan, to send word to his leader, Baotu needs aid on raiding the Mousha Quan compound, tonight."
The young man bows, and climbs up the ladder leading to the manhole.
The night comes by, and Dixia's gang all emerge from the manhole. The streets were quiet and empty not a living thing in sight, not a sound of mouse, or that of a tumble weed tumbling by.
The whole gang, being led by Baotu and his Muzhis run to the heart of the southern lower ring. There's a man in green cloak with a patch of an ostrich horse, who joins the large group of men, with his own men, who had either tattoos or decorations of ostrich horses on them.
Marching to the northern side of the lower ring, they hear a sound of footsteps on various roofs. Jumping off roofs come Xinxian de Rous and, Bings of the Mousha Quan.
"AMBUSH!" yelled Qian Zei, stomping on the ground and kicking a large boulder at a bing of the Mousha Quan, hitting him, and slamming him into the roof. Everyone looks at the skies as more black uniformed men jump out of the shadows and/or roofs with hook swords, bows, hammers, or axes, some come unarmed and begin forming rockslides on the men of the Dixia and the Hei Shichang. Fighting is occurring, Baotu and "Shady" Ying Xiao are back to back, earthbending and fighting off the squadron of Mousha Quan.
"Ying Xiao!" Baotu shouted, Ying Xiao turned quickly to look at Baotu, a boulder is shot towards Ying Xiao, stomping and circling his arms from the ground and raising them up to his face, Baotu formed a large earth wall that intervene with the boulder that was shot at Ying Xiao.
"Thanks, Baotu." shouted Ying Xiao.
"I did not know you were coming to the raid Shady." Baotu shouted back.
"I heard you were coming, I couldn't leave you alone to face Shan-Yu...I wanted some action too!" Ying Xiao shouted excitedly.
Still continuing to fight the Mousha Quan, Qian Zei using a pillar to raise him up onto a roof, he jumps off the roof, legs folded, knees pointing to the earth. With that Qian Zei hits the earth like a bullet, the ground trembles and waves of earth, lifting everyone off the ground around him, and shoots them into the air, as some landed into things, some were killed, some injured.
Dufan lifting himself up from the earthquake waves that Qian Zei had done, a man with a hook sword was rushing towards Qian Zei. Dufan punching the ground sends an earth tremor at the Mousha Quan bing, knocking him off balance.
Qian Zei seeing as the man had fallen behind him, as he was turning around, the man with the hook swords trips him. He falls to the ground, the man with the hook swords stands up, grabs his weapons. Dufan sends another rock tremor with one arm he circles it up as a pillar raises hitting the hook sword wielding soldier in the chest, knocking him back.
Qian Zei stands up and looks at Dufan, raising a thumbs up and quickly ducks as an earth fist flies towards him, both laughing from a distance. Baotu and "Shady" Ying Xiao, were still fighting.
Ying Xiao sneaking up behind a bing, breaks the man's neck, as Baotu kills the other with a rockicle. The two gangs had killed off the whole Mousha Quan squadron, and continued on towards the Mousha Quan compound.
After running through several streets, they reach the Mousha Quan compound. Outside awaited Shan-Yu, and his Mousha Quan gang members. Standing in front and running back through the crowd of Mousha Quan.
Shan-Yu yells, "ATTACK!!"
The roaring of all the men is heard, while earth, and arrows are flying, and blades and blunt weapons are heard clashing into each other. Some of the Mousha Quan shoot arrows at Hei Shichang, and Dixia gangsters, striking a few dead, and a few injured. In the distant, archers wearing green clothing with tattoos of Ostrich Horses, and Armadillo Lions, are hiding on rooftops of homes.
Ying Xiao raises his arm, and yells, "NOW!!!"
Earthbending a dome around himself and Baotu, the Mousha Quan look to the skies, as the earthbenders from the other two gangs, sink into the ground then a split second emerge in rock armor. A large barrage of arrows begin to arch in the sky and fly towards them. From in the small dome, Baotu and Ying Xiao can hear, the screams of the Mousha Quan men and arrows puncturing flesh.
Turning back to back they wait for a minute or two, then they begin punching the dome, the large rocks that once formed the dome were shot at random people. They run into the compound and hear an explosion. Baotu then shouts at Ying Xiao, "Find the Muzhis of Shan-Yu, assassinate them, then run towards my direction!"
Ying Xiao, grins and nods in agreement and runs off. Qian Zei, raises pillars, stomps with his right foot, and shoots both arms up and out, as the pillars shoot out of the ground, and fatally hit Mousha Quan members either in the chest or in the face, killing them.
Dufan begins to bend landslides, making a large hole an archer accidentally falls in it. Closing the hole and making stiff arm movements, crunching sounds are heard, with a couple of painful, screams. Dufan opens the hole again, the archer was dead inside, all crushed up.
Hitting his ankle against the earth a small pillar, shoots the corpse into the air. Ying Xiao runs into the compound and runs into the kitchen, women are running away screaming.
In the dining hall there is man sitting facing the fireplace, with a child beside him. One of the women in the kitchen hit Ying Xiao in the back with a spoon. Turning around he grabs the woman by the throat and slams her against the wall.
The man turns to look at the boy, and the boy runs to his mother.
"Mommy." the boy cries out.
The mother sobbing and her screams are muffled by earth. The boy stares into Shady's eyes. Shady looks at him, and the boy releases a tear, Shady shakes his head, and looks at the woman.
Closing his eyes, a silhouette is seen as Shady breaks the woman's neck, a squeal is heard from the woman as he neck snaps, Ying Xiao drops her. The boy looks at Ying Xiao, then at his dead mother, then runs and cries, back at the man.
"Daddy, daddy...do something make the bad man go away!" the boy cried.
Grinning wickedly, the man quickly earthbends a boulder a Ying Xiao, who redirects it back at him. Splitting the boulder in half, he crumbles it into smaller rocks. Lifting at least five at once, with an open palm he sends them at Ying Xiao.
Taking the hits, Shady punches the ground, as wave of earth rides upon the ground, knocking the kid to the wall, and making the man stumble, and fall onto the dining table.
The man lifts the stairway that led into another room and chucks it at Shady. Shady reacts by sinking into the ground. The man laughs, and pats his crying boy on the shoulders.
Emerging again, he kicks a large slab of earth at the back of the man's head, shattering the back of skull, allowing internal bleeding. A matter of seconds the man dies, and blood pours out of his head. The child screams as Ying Xiao approaches, the boy. One of Ying Xiao's swordsman arrives at the scene.
Snapping his fingers, Ying Xiao points at the boy. The swordsman hits the boy with the hilt of the sword upside his head knocking him out. Carrying the unconscious child in his arms, the swordsman runs off. Bending a new staircase, Shady runs up it into a new room.
Meanwhile, Baotu currently begins to chase Shan-Yu. Hitting a cul-da-sac of a bunch of homes, Shan-Yu begins to run out of options and decides to face Baotu.
"You have nowhere to run, you mongrel!" Baotu shouted to Shan-Yu.
"I do, but you don't!" Shan-Yu shouted back.
"You're a funny man, Shan-Yu. The Mousha Quan is no more after I'm done with you. Go ahead and earthbend!" Baotu demanded.
Shan-Yu laughs, and then replies, "Earthbending is for the weak! I'm not Earth Kingdom, Baotu. I am from the Fire Nation. None of my men, except my Muzhis know that. You'd never face an opponent like me, Baotu."
"I can handle a firebender." Baotu shouted back.
Laughing hysterically again, "Who said anything about firebending?! I'll kill you where you stand!" Shan-Yu shouted.
With that Baotu shoots a large boulder at Shan-Yu. Shan-Yu inhales some air, and then exhales, from his third-eye tattoo shoots out a small ray of fire, as it impacts with the boulder, it explodes. The boulder crumples into small rocks, as Baotu uses his arms to block the falling debris of rocks.
"Haven't your parents ever told you stories about the legendary combustionbenders?!" Shan-Yu yelled at Baotu, then laughing maniacally.
A flashback hits Baotu, showing him at the ripe age of nine, where his father the fanzui de laoban tells him the story of the dangerous combustionbenders.
"Son, stay away from combustionbenders, and if you have to face one, someday when you take my place...the key weakness they have is-" Baotu's father was cut off, as Baotu returns to reality, he jumps out of another explosion.
He couldn't quite remember the rest of his memory about the story his father told him. There was a key weakness to each and every combustionbender, he just couldn't remember what it was and couldn't put his finger on it. He then jumps out of the way of another explosion. He begins to shoot whatever he can at Shan-Yu, each projectile disingrating in Shan-Yu's face, as he laughs again.
Baotu was definitely screwed. Maybe he could keep running away from Shan-Yu as he tries his best to remember their weakness. But then he would look like a coward in front of his peers.
He couldn't have that! Continuing to do his best, he begins to send bigger projectiles at Shan-Yu. One big enough actually hits Shan-Yu sending him flying and crashing into a house.
Lifting himself off, the house explodes into burnt shribble, and Shan-Yu walks out of the wreckage. Exploding a market cart in front of him, and inhaling and exhaling once more and shoots another ray of fire towards Baotu's feet. Baotu jumps back. Slapping his arms onto the ground of the street, rock covers his arms, they turn into large fists, Baotu then begins to run towards Shan-Yu.
Shan-Yu sends another combust at Baotu, blocking it with his earth fists, the fists crumble and Baotu flies back where he was lying upon. Baotu's clothing was burning on certain spots of his shirt, smoke appearing.
Looking at the moonlit sky, he begins to think that this fight will go on through the night. He'll try to find another way to kill Shan-Yu. Rolling off to the right, an explosion occurs where he was currently lying at.
Miraclously, "Shady" Ying Xiao, showed up to aid Baotu. Raising pillars, sliding his foot slightly, the ground around the pillars turns into sand, with his right leg he kicks at the pillars, as they slide towards Shan-Yu at a quickening speed.
Blowing two pillars up, one actually hits Shan-Yu, knocking him back, sending him flying. After the dust had cleared, he stands up and inhales and exhales, at the same time Baotu makes a large dome around Ying Xiao and himself. The fire impacts with the dome, and it explodes, Baotu jumps out of the smoke with a large earth fist, and upper cuts Shan-Yu.
Flying three feet in the air, he quickly hits the ground with a large thud. Shaking his head he rises, and grins. Inhaling again he shoots an even bigger combust, Ying Xiao raises a wall.
The explosion occurs and both Shan-Yu and Ying Xiao fly in different directions. Baotu stomps and lifts a boulder out of the ground. Kicking it at Shan-Yu, Shan-Yu shoots combustion fire at it, disintegrating the boulder into dust.
Out from nowhere comes Dufan and Qian Zei, Dufan stomps on the ground raising a big rock, and Qian Zei closes his hands, as the rock crumbles into pieces. Grabbing one of the rocks, Qian Zei begins to aim.
Dufan rises in the air with a pillar. Then he pushes his weight down on the pillar so it quickly sinks down as he punches the earth with both of his fists, sending a wave of earth at Shan-Yu.
Shan-Yu beginning to stagger, Qian Zei throws the small rock. The rock hits Shan-Yu in the third eye and knocks him down on his behind. Angered Shan-Yu stands up and roars at them, inhales and the combusting flame explodes right in front of him, as large explosion, the smoke clears, and nothing is left. Just a large black smear.
Baotu and Ying Xiao look back at Dufan and Qian Zei, "Qian Zei, what did you do?" Baotu asked.
"To defeat a combustionbender, you must disorient their third-eye. The tattoo he has marked where his third-eye chakra was." Qian Zei explained.
"That was brilliant, Qian Zei!" Baotu replied.
Meanwhile, up in the upper ring thousands of citizens of Ba Sing Se, are gathered around in immensely, large crowd. The sun had begun to rise, the earthen council was outside the palace, with a young man kneeling down, in an Earth King attire. The head earthen councilor carried the Earth King crown in his hand.
"Oh great Earth King Ta Po, who ended the Thirty Year War with Avatar Ku Tei, now passed. Father of Chung Po, father-in-law of Song-Li, grandfather of Shin-su, now passed, and grandfather of Qiang Zhen." the man shouted.
"We now lay you, to rest." the head councilor shouted.
With that in mind, two Earth Kingdom soldiers sunk the coffin deep into the earth.
"As you agreed to your grandson's request, you are now succeeded by your grandson." the head councilor shouted, as he raised the crowned, and placed it on the young man's head.
"All hail, the forty-second Earth King Qiang Zhen!" the councilor shouted.
The crowd cheered, as the man rose to his feet, the crowd then bowed.