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January 19, 2013
Nightfall was near as a young, female Waterbender finished her healing duties in the village infirmary. About five years earlier, some massive beings only heard of in legend known as the Lion Turtles appeared outside the front gates. They selected a few of the villagers, Po included, to learn the art of bending energy. Several things could be done with this but the moment the Lion Turtles left, the Chief declared that women could only use this for healing and cooking properties, nothing more practical. If they were caught the consequences were said to be severe. The Chief was unaware that Po had used her abilities to pass on Energybending to the rest of her family. Lately she had been using it to sneak out at night up to the Spirit Oasis.
She did this by manipulating her own energy to make herself as light as air so she may sneak through the igloo without waking the rest of her family. She would spend countless hours in the warmth of the Oasis with a handful of the other youth in the tribe. They would all watch the two Koi fish in their eternal dance. Everyone in the village were aware of who these fish were said to represent and as such they worshiped them.
But these youngsters, all who had received Energybending, seemed to understand that they didn't represent spirits, they WERE spirits. Through the dance they continuously performed, they were attempting to speak to them. So far they had understood that one fish represented the Moon Spirit while the other represented the Ocean Spirit. Beyond this they were unable to make another connection. The group had only been meeting here for a few short months, once or twice a week. They had not been able to as of late due to one of the members being caught wandering the village at night by the guards, which increased patrols.
Po approached the Oasis and saw fewer members than usual. Only those truly dedicated to deciphering the Spirits' message.
"I assume the rest were too afraid of being caught?" she said quietly to a boy in his mid teens. She received a nod in response and proceeded to sit across from him.
"Tonight is the full moon...have you ever watched the Ocean when the Moon fully reveals herself to him?"
The rest of the group looked at Po with sudden, increased interest. Usually she was very quiet but to see her take charge of this meeting definitely was an attention getter.
"I walked the shore tonight to avoid the increased patrol and noticed the tide was much higher. As though the Moon was pulling the Ocean towards her. During the day the tide comes and goes, in an endless search for the Moon until night when she once again pulls him closer. The full moon must be a sign, the Spirit is at her most powerful.All while Po was explaining her theory the Koi fish got more and more excited in their dancing. Darting and weaving throughout the small pond, occasionally even jumping above the surface. The group watched them in awe, the Full Moon definitely seemed to bring them much Energy. The two were moving in such a manner that they created waves in the normally motionless pond. Po had a sudden realization as the two fish started jumping more and more. Without saying a word she stood, looked at her companions and dove into the Oasis. She surfaced with the two fish swimming rapidly around her, the water frothing.
"She has angered them!" the teen boy said fearfully.
"No! Look!" a girl pointed.
Po's eyes flashed a brilliant green while the distinctive spots on the front of the fishes head glowed a bright white. The fish swam faster and faster until they were a blur around Po. As a funnel of water began to surround it too had a glow to it; Po reached her hand out to it. As the group stood in awe, two voices echoed throughout the Oasis.
Let it be known the world is changing. Tonight under the Full Moon the first Waterbender is born. You are the first of a new era, spread this word to all your brethren and sister Tribes..
As the echoing voices faded away the moonlight got brighter, illuminating the water funnel surrounding Po. For just a moment time seemed to slow as the process completed before the moonlight returned to normal and the Spirits calmed their dance.
Po, her eyes losing the shine, looked towards the rest. She smiled and spoke:
"Friends. Their message was a gift. I am to pass it along to you and we as a group will pass it onto the rest of our tribe. This was our purpose all along. The world is going to change. I saw a vision of much chaos but in the end, someone will arrive to restore balance, someone amazing."Surprisingly no one in the village was aware of what happened the previous night and were quite visibly surprised when the group announced what happened. The Chief stepped forward, demanding a show of this "Waterbending." Po, with a determined look nodded and step forward but the Chief stopped her. Laughing he said:
"You?! A woman?! No no, you, " he said pointing to the teen boy, "Provide a demonstration."
Po glared at the Chief but she stood back with the rest of the group as the boy managed to shape the snow on the ground into a small mound. With this the Chief was impressed and declared those interested could be delivered this gift but set the same strict guidelines of healing and other practical uses for women. A "tradition" that wouldn't be broken for thousands of years...but that's another story...for now we shift to a rugged landscape in the midst of a war threatening to start as two lovers attempt to keep the peace....
For the collective works of the author, go here.