|and The Ultimate Waterbender||Drama||PG||None||No update page|
|The Flame Still Burns|
August 6, 2012
Previously on Journeys
Azula has been escorted to her cell, the memories of her past swirling all around her. She is walking to cell 48, one step after another...
One step after the next. Into one hallway, then another. She looked around her, to see the people in those cells. The dark hallway, permeated with the smell of unwashed clothes, and heat of the torches warming her face. Was this home?
The guards came to a stop. "Well, here we are, princess. Cell forty eight."
She looked in the cell, to find a room no bigger than her room in the palace. Two torches were lit on the wall, providing little light. There was a beat up mat in the corner of the cell, for her to sleep on. She walked in, one step after the other.
"Is this...home?" She asked, her eyes welling up. " No. NO. I DON'T DESERVE SUCH A ROTTEN EXCUSE FOR A HOME. WHERE'S MY FATHER? I'll have you know that-" her voice faltered. "Father..."
"Your father is in a prison miles away from here. Don't worry about him." The guards closed the door in the cell, and locked her in from the outside. There was a little slot for which food could be given, yet that could only be opened from the outside. Azula, former princess of the Fire Nation, who once had everything, now had nothing.
She lay down on the mat, miserable. Why did she do it? Why did she go and lie to Zuko at the beach, when she told him father wanted him home? What if that man hadn't said, "prisoners?" Where would she be? Where would the Avatar be?
Or, what if she hadn't locked Zuko in those catacombs during the coup? What if she had let him stay as a traitor? What would have happened? Did she make the right decisions? Was the perfect princess of the Fire Nation really that perfect?
She was thinking of the time she boarded the navy ship to begin her quest, when she heard the door unlock. She went in a weak attack pose, preparing to burn the life out of anyone who tries to hurt her even more.
This was a voice she had never heard before. It was kind of a dark, slurred voice. A man walked in, with palpe skin and black hair, with gray eyes which had the intesntiy of a hawk. She felt compelled to lower her hands, and before she knew it she was not in her stance. "Who-"
"-am I?" The man finished for her. "I am the one responsible for figuring out why you are insane, and how to help you. Over the next few days, I'm going to ask you some questions. You're going to answer all my questions, and you will not lie to me. Understand?"
Azula raised an eyebrow. Her eyes were wild; who did this man think he was? Telling her what she can or cannot do? She would say anything she pleased.
"No, you won't. You will say the truth," said the man.
Azulas eyes widened. "How..."
"It's my job, princess," he replied.
"I don't belong in this dump." Azula muttered. Her worst nightmare had come true. She couldn't depend on herself anymore, she had no purpose except to sit in a dark room and rot.
The man sighed. "Azula, believe it or not, you can redeem yourself. You still have a destiny."
"How can you be so sure?" She shrieked. "EVERYONE has left me! The name Azula has no meaning anymore! I have no purpose! I am going to stay in this dark room for the rest of my life, while Zuko, Mai and Ty Lee get to spend the rest of their lives being worshipped!" She sobbed. "What do I have left?" Azula had never been so helpless, so unsure of herself. She felt so proud that she could walk on her own at the very least, but what good would it do her if she was going to be left in that cell for the rest of her life?
"Princess, I have had a history almost as twisted and cruel as yours, but what you need to remember is, your name is still Azula, and only you can define the meaning of it. For example, your brother Zuko." he studied Azula's face. "He spent almost a year in what seemed as a futile search for the Avatar. However, he soon realized that you find even greater happiness in doing what you think is right. Azula, your life isn't over. You are fourteen years old, and you cannot lose sight of what is important to you."
Azula did not say anything. She did not know what to say. She thought about what had happened the past year, how she treated her brother, and everyone else. How she had taken advantage of her friendship with Mai and Ty Lee. Maybe...maybe she did mess up.
"Admitting your mistakes is the first step to take on your journey to freedom."
Azula exhaled. Freedom. How much she would enjoy being able to appreciate life as it should be, not like this; sealed away in this rathole.
Azula looked at the man in confusion.
"My name is Xin Lee," he said.
"Azula. My name is Azula."