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|Fire & Ice|
June 10, 2015
Fire. Air. Water. Earth. Long ago, I had been friends with the Avatar and we had many adventures together, but little did I know, we were always being watched so closely. After Korra was murdered, I could never be the same, my life seemed to be over, until I learned of the new Avatar, or should I say, Avatars. I now have devoted the rest of my life to these twins and I know that one day, they can stop this evil of Vaatu that plagues this world!
Previously on Avatar: The Severed Spirit
The twin Avatars and their Earthbending friend arrived in Republic City and made friends with the beautiful Moa and the mysterious masked Hogosha. After a brief confrontation and explanation, the three friends learned that Moa and Hogosha were White Lotus informants and that an agent would be heading to Republic City to meet the new Avatars.
Fire & Ice
"Good evening," Moa called to Aiya as she poured a two cups of tea. "How was your day?"
Aiya laughed as she hung up her coat. "Eventful." She had a dreamy far off look in her eyes. "My favorite attraction was definitely Aang Memorial Island... Republic City is just so beautiful!"
Moa handed Aiya a piping hot cup and the two sat down at the table. "I know," Moa said as she sipped her drink. "I love living here. Hogosha on the other hand doesn't."
"What's his problem anyway?" Aiya inquired. "He seems a little overprotective and tense all the time."
Moa took a deep breath and stared into the dark liquid that filled her cup. "Hogosha lived here in Republic City long before you or I were even born. He knew the previous Avatar-"
"Korra?" Aiya cut in.
Moa nodded. "I'm not sure what happened to her but Hogosha was there. You could ask him about it but I doubt he'll say anything." Moa poured herself some more tea. "That man is more stubborn than a mule when it comes to talking about himself."
Aiya laughed and spit out some of her tea. "I'm so sorry!" She could barely conceal her smile when she saw Moa drenched in the hot drink. Moa too began giggling and two girls started gathering towels to clean up the mess.
"Oh, I meant to ask you, where are the boys?" Moa said as she laid a towel down on top of the wet table.
"They are shopping for some food supplies. They told me to come back here and rest."
Moa smiled. "That's rather nice of them." There was a knock on the door and Moa hurried over to see who it was. "Hello?"
Aiya looked concerned. "Who's there?"
Moa shrugged and looked through the peephole and her eyes lit up. "It's Ruby!" Moa opened the door and hugged the startled looking woman. "What are you doing here?"
The old woman stepped out of the cold and into the hot warehouse and began moving her hands in a strange way that Aiya had never seen before.
A confused Aiya asked, "Are you going to introduce me Moa?"
"Yes." Moa helped Ruby remove her coat and hung it on the coat rack. "This is Ruby. She hails from the Earth Kingdom and is an elite member of the White Lotus." Ruby bowed and Aiya did the same.
"It's so nice to meet you, Ruby, I am-" Aiya began, but was stopped when Ruby put both her hands on Aiya's cheeks and stared into her eyes. Ruby then turned to Moa, with a smile on her face, and began moving her hands in a strange way once again. "Um, Moa..."
"Ah yeah I forgot to mention, Ruby is mute," Moa stated as she copied Ruby's strange hand movements.
"Mute?" Aiya's eyes widened as she looked at the poor old woman.
Moa nodded again. "It means she can't talk, but can hear everything we say. She's a very good intel agent because it is very hard for anyone to get any information out of her."
Aiya stared at the woman in shock. "How do you communicate then?"
Moa held her hands up. "We use something called sign language. I could teach you it if you'd like." Ruby tapped Moa on the shoulder and told her something. "Ruby would like to talk to you now."
"But... I don't know..." Aiya began.
"It's fine," Moa stated and helped the woman sit down at the table. "I'll translate for you."
Aiya was weary but agreed to speak with the mute lady. Ruby began using her hands to communicate again. "She wants to know the name of the man who captured you and you're brother. The man who instructed you."
"His name was Milou Hu, he went by the title of Zhu."
Ruby held out her hands and asked for a pen and paper. Moa quickly sprung up and searched for the supplies and gave it to Ruby so she could write down the information. "How old were you when you were captured by him?" Moa whispered and Aiya thought on the question for a moment.
"I don't know. I lived with him and the others in the Sanctuary for all my life."
Ruby nodded and wrote the information down. She continued asking Aiya questions for about an hour. All this time they were unaware of the woman hiding outside of the warehouse listening to every single word.
The three boys finally arrived at home and were surprised to see the stranger sitting at their table. "Who is this Moa?" Hogosha demanded.
"Her name is Ruby and she's mute," Aiya stated.
Hogosha looked at Moa, who was hurriedly preparing the dinner. "She is the White Lotus informant I told you about. She has been the one receiving our messages." Moa made a few signals with her hands and Ruby stood and bowed to Hogosha.
Ruby turned to Moa and used her sign language. "What is she doing?" Puren and Lei said in unison for they were as perplexed as Aiya to see such strange movements.
"She uses her hands to talk," Moa said with a smile and translated what Ruby was saying. "Ruby says she is going to be leaving soon and-"
"Tell her to stay," Hogosha said coldly and set the groceries down. "It's too dangerous out there, especially at this hour," Moa eagerly told Ruby and the old woman thanked Hogosha in the only way she could. The man then bowed to Ruby and made his way over to Moa and whispered something in her ear.
"I will inform Master Kalden in the morning." Aiya barely heard Moa whisper back.
Aiya set down her cup of tea and stood up. "Well it was lovely meeting you Ruby but I think I am going to go to bed now."
"You aren't going to eat?" Lei inquired and Aiya shook her head.
"I-I'm not hungry anymore." The young girl ran up the stairs to her room causing Hogosha and Moa to suspect something was wrong.
Puren shrugged. "Oh well, more food for us." Lei rolled his eyes and the two boys sat down at the table with Ruby.
"Ugh, Squishy, I just can't trust them!" Aiya told her furry little friend as she entered her room and flopped on her bed. "It seems like every time I think I can they do something to- to... what is that?" Aiya stood up and moved towards the dusty window. She was shocked when she saw the water outside begin to rise. That's when Aiya realized what it was. "Tarrimae."
She immediately ran to the door but was stopped in her tracks. Aiya no longer controlled her body, she was like a puppet, under the other Waterbenders control. Aiya's eyes darted back and forth and she could barely see Tarrimae break the window and quietly enter the room. "It's so nice to see you again." The old grouchy woman whispered. "Milou has been looking high and low for you and your dreadful brother."
"Tell him he will have to keep looking." Aiya broke free and turned, knocking Tarrimae back with a gust of wind. Tarrimae easily recovered from this attack and began creating spikes of ice and flung them at Aiya.
Puren ran into the room to see what all the commotion was about and was surprised to see the stranger attacking Aiya. "Leave her alone!" He jumped forward and sent rocks flying towards the mad woman. Tarrimae managed to block these and shot a death glare at Puren.
"Milou has sent me to... collect the Avatars," the old Waterbender said with a sly smile. "Give them to me and I will allow you to leave with your life."
Puren stared directly into Tarrimae's eyes. "No."
The woman just shook her head. "You foolish child." She lunged forward, but was unable to performing any Waterbending because the floor below suddenly opened up and caused her to fall.
"Are you okay?" Puren asked as he examined the tiny cuts on Aiya's arm.
"I am fine." Aiya stood slowly and looked at what was going on downstairs. "Tarrimae must be stopped. She hates losing and will do anything to prevent doing so."
Puren nodded. "Understood." He jumped into the hole and prepared to enter the fight once again.
Moa shot a bolt of lightning at the fierce Waterbender who easily blocked it by building a wall of ice. "Give me the Avatars!"
"Come and get me!" Lei screamed and flames flew from his mouth, melting the wall of ice and causing the water around them to boil and evaporate.
Hogosha entered the room and used the steam coming from the water to create a thick cloud around Lei, Moa and himself. Puren also had entered and was now standing behind a temporary rock barrier he had created. The four gathered around this barricade and discussed their plan. "Puren and Lei, distract her with your Earth and Metalbending and then Moa and I will strike her with lightning."
"What about Aiya?" Lei asked, hoping his sister was fine.
Moa reassured him. "Aiya is with Ruby for now. She sustained minor injuries but Ruby is healing her."
"Thank goodness," Puren and Lei said in unison and immediately gave each other funny looks.
"Enough talk," Hogosha began. "We are going to take down this Waterbender and send her to the Republic City police." Hogosha ran out from behind the barrier and hid behind a pole. Lei and Puren began to Metalbend the ground and throw the pieces at Tarrimae who angrily threw them aside. After this went on for a while Moa and Hogosha charged up their lightning and began striking at Tarrimae.
"You really think you're childish tactics will stop me? I am a master bender!" The old woman cried and twirled causing icicles to fly in every direction.
After taking cover Moa ran to Hogosha and signaled for him to help her up. Hogosha held out his hands and Moa jumped into them, after doing so Hogosha pushed her into the air and Moa was prepared to strike Tarrimae when a vine suddenly wrapped around her and dragged her out of the building. "Weak," whispered Tarrimae and she started to create octopus arms out of water.
"What are we to do?" Puren looked at Lei, who was clearly upset with this annoying bender already.
"I have a solution." The two turned to Hogosha. "I didn't say it. She did." They now saw Ruby standing in front of the open doorway with her hands held high. Tarrimae too saw the old woman and was prepared to attack, even kill, poor old Ruby.
"If I had known you all would be so weak I would've gotten Zhu Milou to send Clyde here." Before Tarrimae could finish talking, Ruby had run over to where she was standing and struck her with precise movements in certain spots in her back, causing her to fall to the ground and lay still.
The three remaining fighters surrounded the now unconscious Waterbender. "What the heck did you just do to her Ruby?"
Hogosha laughed. "It's called Chi-Blocking. Every member of the White Lotus is required to learn it nowadays."
Puren was so surprised. "Wow, you're just amazing Ruby!" The old woman thanked him then she used the vines to help her out of the warehouse so that she could find where Moa had been flung.
"What are we going to do with Tarrimae Hogosha?" Lei demanded.
Hogosha turned away from the two boys. "I already told you that she is going to the RCP."
"No," Lei whispered causing Hogosha's ears to perk up. "We need to interrogate her. If she knows we're in Republic City then I am sure other members of the Society of Faces do also. They could be in the city right now. Do you honestly want to risk us being captured again?"
Hogosha growled, "Do what you want with her. I'm leaving." He then exited the room and slammed the door which caused the entire floor above them to collapse.
"I think you upset him just a bit," Puren stated and Lei rolled his eyes.
"It is so nice to meet you all." Master Kalden bowed to each of them. "Especially the new Avatar. Republic City has been waiting a long time to meet you." Moa whispered something in the Airbender's ear. "Oh forgive me, I thought there was only one of you."
Aiya laughed. "It is fine Master Kalden, it is a little confusing."
"It certainly is. I wonder what would cause the spirit of Raava to sever herself and take on two hosts?" The old man stroked his thick beard.
"Master Kalden," Lei began.
Master Kalden stopped his train of thought and stared at the young boy. "Yes,, Avatar Lei?"
"Um..." Lei looked extremely embarrassed to ask such a question. "What is the spirit of Raava?"
Kalden gasped. "Oh my! Those monsters never taught you about Raava! How horrific your childhood must've been." The man collected his thoughts and spoke again. "Well you may visit Air Temple Island anytime you wish to find out about the ancient world. In fact you can visit the Spirit World anytime and go to the Library of Wan Shi Tong. My eldest sister discovered the place so long ago and made an agreement with that old spirit-"
"The spirit portal!" Puren screamed causing Master Kalden to nearly jump out of his skin.
Moa nervously smiled. "What about it, Puren?"
Puren laughed at his simple revelation. "Tarrimae could've gotten through the spirit portal and her comrades could be waiting on the other side to ambush us at this very moment!"
"Puren, that's actually ingenious!" Lei exclaimed. "We need to inform police of this immediately."
Aiya shook her head. "No, what we need to do is barricade that portal. Do you think you can get the president to do that Kalden?"
Master Kalden shook his head. "I may be the sole representative of the Air Nomads to President Shun but that does not mean that I can just go to his office and demand that he lock down the Spirit Portal, the most famous attraction in this city!"
"Could we get the police to watch over it?" Moa suggested.
Kalden nodded. "I suppose I could do that much for you. By the way Miss Misako, where is that older gentleman, the one who always has that mask on? He never seems to be in this warehouse when I am here."
Moa spouted out an excuse without a second thought, "He traveled to Shamu to meet with some family."
"Ah," Kalden looked relieved. "I did not know he had any Earth Nation family."
Moa shook her head. "Yep, he's full of surprises."
Lei and Aiya looked at one another for they sensed that something definitely was wrong. "Well I will head over to speak to the Chief of Police and get back to you tonight. Lei and Aiya, if you ever need any help Air Temple Island is only a boat ride away."
"Thank you." The twins said in unison and everyone bowed as Kalden exited.
Moa hurriedly ran to the phone and punched in some numbers. After a few rings, the person on the other end picked up. "You better get over here now! I am tired of making up excuses for you!"
"Is everything alright?" Puren inquired.
Moa realized that the three teens were still standing in the same room as her. "Everything is fine. You guys should take Master Kalden up on that offer and visit the Air Temple."
"What about you?" asked Lei.
A distraught looking Moa set down the phone and sighed. "I will stay here with Ruby, she said she wasn't feeling very good."
Aiya put a hand on Moa's shoulder. "You've been here for us and we'll be here for you Moa. If you ever need to talk or anything I will always be available." Moa's eyes were watery and it looked as though she were about to cry. The girl turned away and grabbed a bag then shoved it into Aiya's hands.
"I put some Yuans and sandwiches in there. Go out and have fun." The three looked at her to make sure she was okay. "Don't worry about me, I'm fine." And with that she led them to the door and pushed them out. Before anyone had a chance to say goodbye Moa had shut the door and locked it then rushed upstairs to check on the old Waterbender.
"Hogosha did something and it has really upset Moa," Aiya pointed out. "I just can't figure out what it was."
Lei kicked a pebble that was sitting on the street. "It's none of our business."
Aiya crossed her arms in frustration. "Why can't we try and help someone besides ourselves for once, Lei?"
Lei looked into his sister's eyes. "Moa said she was fine. Now let's get to the dock. I want to see this Air Temple Island for myself."
Aiya growled at her obnoxious sibling. "I think we should help Moa, but I really wanna see the temple too!" Puren squealed and ran on ahead.
Aye'Li entered through the Spirit Portal and headed to the small glade where the Society was waiting for her. "Tarrimae has been captured by the children. Would you like for me to retrieve he, master?" Aye'Li bowed low to the leader of the Society of Faces.
Milou stood. "No, I do not think it is necessary. We will have her soon enough. Guposui!" A man who looked to be no older than twenty approached.
The boy bowed low. "Yes, my master."
"Prove your worth. Show me what you can really do." Guposui smiled at Milou and laughed.
"Of course, master. You will not be disappointed." Guposui exited the glade and put his mask back on. There were people gathered around in the Spirit Portal Park but when they saw Guposui many ran away or called for the police. The young boy simply lifted his hands and pushed the citizens away using Earthbending, they were not his target, the police were.
Guposui stepped out of the portal and was met by about fifty of the Metalbending Police. "Y'know, I'm a Earthbender too." Guposui held out his arms. "But I bet you didn't know there is earth, metal rather, in nearly everything." With a flick of his wrists there were three loud snaps and three of the guards fell to the ground screaming out in pain. The others quickly responded by sending metal shards flying at Guposui. He jumped around the Spirit Portal easily avoiding the metal pieces and injuring more and more policemen.
Eventually everyone except the Police Chief was lying on the ground grabbing a part of their body that was now broken. "Wh-what are you? What do you want?" Guposui put his hands on the Police Chief's chest.
"Oh, I want a lot of things. One of these is the location of my friend, Tarrimae."
"I-I don't k-know who you're talking about," the man cried as Guposui's hands tightened around his ribs.
"She is a Waterbender. Your men and women arrested her only yesterday!"
The man immediately remembered. "Oh, oh her! She is at an old abandoned warehouse on Sokka Street. We didn't arrest her! The resident insisted that we didn't!"
Guposui stepped back and let go of the Police Chief. "Thank you for your cooperation." Then the young man bent down and twelve loud cracks could be heard. When he stood again the man whom he had spoken with was now lying on the ground with his hands clutching his chest.
Guposui shook his head and stepped back through the portal where all members of the Society of Faces were waiting for him. "I am pleased with your work," Zhu Milou commented as he looked at the mess that was left on the street. "We first are to retrieve Tarrimae and then those brats."
"Here is an ancient Airbender head shaver; it was gifted to my father by some of the Air Acolytes many years ago." Master Kalden held up the strange and placed it on his bald head. "I'm not exactly sure how it worked but it is very fascinating!"
The three visitors giggled at Kalden's antics but immediately grew quiet when a woman entered the room. "Kalden!" She ran up to him and the two hugged.
Aiya cleared her throat. "Kalden, are you going to introduce us?"
"Oh yes!" The man laughed at himself. "This is my wife, Nima and-" He kissed the plump child that was in Nima's arms. "My son, Tenzin Junior." The twins and Puren greeted the them.
"It's very nice meeting you all," Nima said with a radiant smile. "Has my husband been boring you with his trinkets and such?"
"Actually no, you Air Nomads have some pretty interesting stuff!" Puren stated.
Kalden laughed along with the others. "Oh if only Ikki and Meelo had as much enthusiasm as you Puren. All they care about is taming the flying Bison and Winged-Lemurs."
"Well, you've got to admit, they are pretty cute!" A Lemur had clung onto Aiya's leg causing Squishy to become afraid and hide in her jacket.
The phone rang and Kalden kissed his wife, then ran upstairs to answer it. "I will be right back."
"So where are all the other Airbenders? This place seems a little too quiet," Lei politely asked Nima who was cuddly her chubby little son.
"Well, many of them are in the air temples around the world or in the Democratic Earth Nation tending to problems. Air Temple Island was once home to the only Airbending family in the world but now it is just a training hub for those Air Nomads who want to help bring peace to the world."
"That must be exciting," Aiya said with a smile.
Nima nodded. "Oh it is! We see Airbenders from all different cultures and walks of life come here and we teach them about their culture and such then send them out into the world."
Kalden came down the stairs and wore a worried look. "Nima, I hate to interrupt, but would you mind taking Jr. outside so I can speak to the Avatars and their friend alone."
"Of course,, my little Monkey-Bat." Nima grabbed a bottle then headed outside.
"The Society of Faces is here in Republic City," Kalden sputtered the words out the minute his wife had left the room.
Lei shook his head. "No, that's impossible! We had the best police in the city guarding it."
Kalden covered his face. "Those 'best police' are now in the hospital, everyone of them with severe injuries to their leg or arm." He breathed heavy. "And one of them, the chief, was killed."
"We have to stop them!" Lei's face was red and contorted.
"Oh my," Aiya whispered.
"What is it?" asked a curious and afraid Puren.
Aiya gulped. "We have to get to the warehouse!" Lei and Puren immediately agreed and ran to the doorway, but were stopped by Kalden.
Lei stood in an Earthbending position. "Move right now or I'll make you and this whole building move."
"I am afraid I cannot let you go," Kalden screamed. "I know not what Milou wants with you, but I cannot let you go out there and be destroyed by whatever that thing was that attacked the police."
"Fine, but how are you going to protect us from it?" Lei asked and caused Kalden to think for a moment.
The Airbending Master then pulled a key out of his robes and walked over to a column that was in the center of the room. He placed the key in a small slot and turned it and the floor suddenly opening up revealing a secret staircase. "After the Earth Empire attacked my father built this so that the other Airbenders could get to safety if there was an emergency."
The three friends followed Master Kalden down the stairs and eventually came upon a large hall that was located underneath the temple. "Wow!" Puren whispered as he saw the thousands and thousands of pounds of emergency food and books.
"How much...stuff is down here?" Aiya inquired as she too marveled at the secret cellar.
Kalden stood tall and smiled. "Enough to feed a thousand Air Nomads for two hundred and fifty-six years."
Lei looked around but did not express his joy, he instead stated, "I hope we aren't down here that long."
Kalden laughed. "Oh Lei, do not be so glum. Housed here are some of the most private and rare works of Air Nomad history!" The Nomad picked up a glider and presented it to Lei. "This was used by the Air Nomads long ago, it can be very useful in battle."
"I'll keep it." Lei attached it to his back without waiting for an answer from Kalden.
"Well." Kalden cleared his throat and got everyone's attention. "I'll go upstairs and check on my wife and the other nomads then return with any news. Feel free to read or eat anything in this room!"
There was a sudden crash and the stone stairs vanished from sight. Lei and Aiya looked at each other and whispered the name in unison, "Aye'Li" All they could do is look on as the walls around them began to crumble and water poured in.
"How dare you attack the holiest area of Air Temple Island." Kalden struck the evil Earthbender with a gust of wind causing her to fall into the water. "Children we must get out of here at once."
"On it!" Puren ran over to the place where the steps had been and begin bending them back open.
The group was now knee-deep in water and Kalden was more anxious than ever. "Oh my father would hate me for allowing this to happen! Oh what am I going to tell the others."
Aiya put a reassuring hand on Master Kalden's shoulder. "Don't worry, Kalden. We'll stop the Society of Faces and keep this place from being submerged." After speaking to him, Aiya attempted to stop the flow of water by freezing the water that surrounded the newly formed cracks. Meanwhile, Lei ran around forming walls around the precious documents and food while Kalden dried off the items which had been submerged.
There was another loud crash and the whole wall which Aiya had been trying to save was filled with multiple holes now. "Remember me?" Tarrimae screeched and threw Aiya all the way to Lei.
"Switch with me," Aiya pleaded, causing Lei to groan but he agreed. The two grasped each other's wrist and each felt a sudden surge of energy. Now Aiya would be able to bend fire and Lei air.
Lei turned to Tarrimae and pushed her and the water back but it wasn't enough to stop the clever lady. She built a wall of ice then pushed a huge block towards Puren. Luckily Master Kalden was fast enough and managed to create a shield around the Earthbender and himself.
Aiya charged towards Tarrimae and burned the wall of ice and, judging by her scream, one of Tarrimae's hands. "You fool, I'll kill you!" Tarrimae reached down and created a huge snowball but her plan was once again foiled by Aiya. "How dare you!" Tarrimae hit Aiya right in the face which temporarily threw her off balance and caused her to fall into the waist-deep water.
"Leave Ai alone!" Puren screamed and Earthbent a column at Tarrimae. The old woman gasped as it hit her in the chest but she immediately recovered and used the stream of flowing water to completely freeze Puren. Lei and Kalden combined their Airbending and attempted to make a tornado but were stopped when Tarrimae managed to destroy the wall behind them and completely flood the room. Kalden made another shield of air so that he and Lei could swim to the surface.
"We must save Aiya and Puren!" As they swam up they could see Tarrimae grab Lei's twin and cackle as she created a bubble and swam to the surface. Kalden and Lei had almost made it to the surface when all of time seemed to stop.
"What the-" Kalden stopped Airbending and the two men then realized that Tarrimae had frozen all of the water in the room in order to escape.
"No!" Screamed Lei. "They have Aiya... and my Firebending!"
"Moa? Ruby? Anybody?" Puren, Lei and Kalden burst into the warehouse wearing thick parkas. They looked around and saw a huge mess. Everything in the kitchen had been burned up, the living room was completely leveled and the living quarters were filled with ashes. The three eventually found Moa in Hogosha's private room. She was crying.
Kalden looked at Moa's broken arm. "What happened?"
Moa looked down at Ruby's lifeless body. "She saved my life." Lei and Puren helped Moa up while Kalden took placed Ruby's body in the only bed that hadn't been completely disintegrated. "If only he had been here."
"Who?" Puren timidly asked.
Moa's eyebrows twisted up. "Hogosha!" She screeched and knocked down one of the pots in the kitchen. "He could've saved her! He could-" She immediately began weeping and fell into Lei's arms.
"I'm sorry," Kalden whispered. "I have called my siblings. Airbenders are coming to put an end to the Society's destruction."
Moa didn't move. She just sat in the broken chair staring into space. "I never want to see him again." She repeated over and over again and clenched her fists.
"Did I do something wrong?" Kalden whispered to Puren and Lei.
"Hogosha! It was all because of- of him!"
The three boys decided to step outside Moa alone so she could be alone and mourn. "How soon will the Nomads be here?" Lei asked.
"They have my wife and son," Master Kalden suddenly realized. "They have my joy, my love, my everything!"
Lei grabbed Kalden by the collar and looked him right in the eyes. "Well, we're never going to get them back if everyone throws themselves a pity-party!"
Kalden nodded and took a few minutes to calm down. "It will take them one, maybe two days, at the most."
"Good," Lei whispered. "When they get here tell them that I want my sister and I want revenge."
For the collective works of the author, go here.