Ancient Paradox
Chapter information

Book Six: Shadow



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Release date

June 27, 2015

Last chapter

Ep.7: Division at the Pass

Next chapter

Ep.9: Symbiotic Relations

A few days had passed since Asami had her big vision in her head about the Voronon. The Voronon themselves kept on being put in her mind: Awadil, Katyat and Koyot, those three names were edged in her brain. Sure, her headaches involving those Voronon became something she grew used to. It mainly came down to: see a Voronon, and get its name and weak point. However, Asami hadn't dealt with this many Voronon since her discovery of them back at that Spirit Library. Even if so, at least the effect from the library didn't last very long, but this effect from the three lasted for days, eventually calming down. Even so, there was something different with these three that Asami couldn't fully place. While lying down on her bed, cloth still on her head, Asami finally had enough and got back up to her feet. Something else was being told in her head concerning these three Voronon in particular...


The word itself was rather strange, but one Asami Sato herself seemed to be hearing throughout the course of her migraine since confronting Yiplov days before. It was time Asami got it out of her head and to the rest of the group.

In the main room, the team was looking over the map of the Earth Kingdom. So far, they'd been going southeast since leaving Republic City, or that seemed to be at least since leaving Serpent's Pass. Korra was the first to notice Asami come in.

"Oh, hi, Asami. Feeling better?" Korra asked. Asami simply nodded as she sat down between Kai and Bolin. It was better to see Asami no longer in pain due to her migraine. Asami smiled to Korra before she looked down at the map herself.

"So, where are we now?" Asami asked.

"Well, we've headed southeast from the Serpent's Pass, so we should be heading towards the Si Wong Desert soon," Kai explained, pointing to the desert on the Earth Kingdom map. Asami and Korra knew what kind of trouble that could be in and of itself, personal experience proving that true to say the least. However, Asami felt, again, that she should be getting her information over and done before conversation could continue. Besides, one of the Voronon was situated within the Si Wong Desert anyway from her own knowledge, so...

"Guys, I need to tell you something," Asami began. They looked over to Asami soon after she said that, Asami herself unsure how to exactly word it out correctly...

"What's the matter?" Korra asked.

"Look. That headache, those Voronon...I think we have to separate for them."

"Separate? You mean split up?" Kai asked. Asami only nodded.

"What kind of idea is that, you know these things are super tough, right?" Ziyou pointed out.

"I know, I know. Just something keeps telling me we should split up if we're to fight them," Asami insisted. It was, on the surface, a rather dumb and random idea. For one thing, these things were huge, tough, and only Asami apparently knew where the weak points were on each one. If they were to split up, how would they know what to do when coming across one? Asami wasn't sure on her own decision either, but something just kept nagging at her to go through with the idea...

"Asami, that can't work, we have to stay together if we're gonna fight these Voronon! You saw how dangerous those things are." Before Asami could say anything, suddenly another stroke of pain hit her temple. Worry struck the others, but the pain quickly resided, much faster than it would normally do... Asami had gotten a solution.

"Guys, this can work. The Voronon aren't as powerful as you think, all you have to know is where the weak points on a Voronon are, and the rest is self-explanatory."

"But we need you to tell us that, remember? None of us know their weak spots except you - apparently."

"No, you don't, Ziyou. All you need to know is where to hit, you don't need me with you for that. I can give you the information you need now, and you can work it out from there."

"And how are we gonna keep in touch, might I ask?" Mako asked.

"We have portable radios in our storage, we can use those to contact each other after defeating one. That way, we can gather each member much easier. This plan can work, we can handle the problem much faster if we're targeting more Voronon at one time instead of flying around all together, taking them out one by one. You guys want to stop them, don't you?" There was still some bit of doubt upon Asami's 'little plan'. The idea to handle the problem faster was one idea, and one that was actually reasonable, but the fact that they were dealing with basically giant violent golems was still troubling. They could either stay together and deal with one on one, or split and deal with multiple as Asami said. It just felt a bit troublesome to decide all together...

"Well...I'm not sure," Bolin said after a bit, pretty much speaking for everyone.

"Think of it this way: the sooner we can fight the Voronon, the less chance countless others can get hurt while we're traveling. You've seen how many were killed by Yiplov, right? If they are active while we're away, who knows how much harm they could do before we actually find them." Now the point was being better made. They had been going rather slow and didn't know the true potential of these Voronon. In the end, if they continued to travel the rate they were, an entire landscape could be destroyed by the time they caught up. That alone was too high of a risk to take, and Asami knew it too.

"...Alright, Asami, we'll give it a try, but none of us are going alone, understand?" Korra concluded. Asami, however, counted out how many there were, and a frown formed on her face.

"Korra, one of us has to go alone for this one...I'll do it."

"No, you're not! Asami, you can't fight them alone, I'll go with you," Korra insisted.

"Korra, no."

"Asami, you can't be serious, those things will kill anyone—"

"Except me! You all realize none of the Voronon tried to hurt me throughout the trip, right? If I go alone, they won't try to attack," Asami protested.

"That's not true, Yiplov snatched you and swan off with you, remember?" Bolin pointed out.

"But it didn't try to kill me, it swam off with me, but I didn't feel it trying to cause me any harm. Guys, please, if we want to solve this problem as soon as possible, we have to split and face them that way!" Asami insisted, more urgent that time. Everyone thought it over a little more, and realized she was right: none of the Voronon they'd come across tried to harm her in anyway, but targeted them instead. Korra especially thought it over a while more, and got another thought in mind...

"Okay, Asami. You can go alone, but if anything goes wrong, don't hesitate to call, please."

"I promise. That goes for everyone else too, anything bad happens, you can just call back."

"Understood, but where are you gonna go? Don't forget, we're heading into Si Wong desert," Kai reminded.

"Drop me off by Si Wong Rock. I can find my way from there..."

Seemed everyone has a new plan in mind. A bit of a risky one, but a plan nonetheless. For Korra, at least Asami would be safe...


Meanwhile, along the southwestern edge of the desert, a town known as the Misty Palms Oasis was settled upon the area. Upon the town's northern gate, leading into the desert, a figure stood looking into the expanse of sand and sun. Wearing a sun-protection hood, the girl thought over her situation. That girl was Kuvira.

"One of them's out there," she thought, referring to another Voronon out in the desert. Ever since leaving the Foggy Swamp, Kuvira had gone fully on her own in her travels, relying fully on what visions she'd gotten from the library to guide her on her way. She wanted to go back to Republic City, or even Zaofu, but her priorities and goals aimed her to Si Wong Desert. Still, the wonder on how ticked off Lin Beifong must be for Kuvira to just run off like that was a slight wonder for her. Then again, Lin wouldn't expect Kuvira to go to Si Wong Desert for anything - who would expect that from anybody, really? So, with her supplies from the springs in her pack, she began heading off into the desert in front of her.

There was no turning back...


It took quite a while for the airship to fly through the desert, the heat beating down upon them all, inside and out. No clouds in the sky, nothing but the sun beaming down on the desert floor, like a huge sea of sand and dust laid down before them. Eventually, a landmark began to appear over the horizon: a large rocky mesa jutting out of the ground like a lone tower. The airship landed nearby Si Wong Rock, Asami Sato walking out with a pack full of supplies for her trip. As she walked out, Korra joined her outside.

"You sure you don't want anyone else with you, Asami?"

"I'm sure, Korra. I'll be alright, I promise you that. You just focus on getting the other Voronon while I'm gone."

Korra just nodded, she did want to go with her to make sure she was safe, but if Asami was fully sure she would go alone, then Korra couldn't argue. Korra gave Asami a hug.

"...Good luck, Asami."

"You too, Korra."

After their exchange of hugs, Korra went back in the airship. Asami watched as the airship started to fly away from Si Wong Rock. Asami knew she was alone from here on out, only her knowledge on the Voronon by her side. After she was sure that the group could no longer see her, Asami looked out to the desert that laid before her. Nothing she could see but sand and sun. With a sigh, Asami began to head out...

The day was very unbearable for the raven-haired girl to handle. Asami couldn't tell how many miles she had walked, the sun beating down upon the world below. Normally that wouldn't be a problem, but the desert heat added to the rough environment, along with the sand dragging her down, especially when she walked up the dunes from time to time. Her supplies made that not too much of an issue. Asami personally didn't have a clue where the next Voronon was, but something inside her told her she was going the right way in order to find it. Luckily for her, she wasn't confronted by any buzzard wasps while walking through the desert, it was tough enough already. What Asami wondered, though, was what kind of Voronon would be out here. So far, many of the Voronon she had come across were land bound, aside from the aquatic Yiplov. Since many looked overly different from each other, the ideas were pretty endless. However, her luck was starting to get rather stressful, especially when shadows started to circle her. So much for nothing being around her. Asami looked up and saw a pair of hungry buzzard wasps hovering overhead. Normally, buzzard wasps wouldn't bother much with travelers, but these two were especially hungry and started to fly down towards her.

"No, go away!" Asami yelled, the chimeras not caring otherwise. Before any of them could attack Asami, or steal from her, suddenly some sort of sand blast was launched at them both, sending them flying away. Asami didn't understand where the sand was launched from, nor who did that.

"Who did that? Anyone there?!" Asami called, looking around a bit. While searching for the source, a figure did present itself not too far away, standing on top of one of the dunes, looking down at Asami. At first, Asami wasn't sure if it was real - hallucinations a common thing in Si Wong Desert. But that figure went down to Asami's level, showing that it was real. What shocked Asami the most was who it actually was.

"Kuvira!" Asami gasped, taking a step back.

"Please, don't run, I'm not here to hurt you," Kuvira said, surprisingly sincere. Asami was more surprised than scared to see a prisoner like Kuvira suddenly appear from nowhere.

"What are you doing here? How are you here?" Asami asked, relaxing a tiny bit. Kuvira looked away.

"I've been traveling on my own for a while. Why are you all alone, you're with the Avatar, right?" Kuvira asked, equally curious as to why Asami was all alone in the desert.

"Not right now. I'm trying to find another Voronon. I sense it's somewhere around here, but I'm not sure where exactly," Asami explained, starting to walk again.

"...Well, looks like we're on the same path," Kuvira stated, following Asami. Asami looked to Kuvira with some surprise.

"You're looking for them too?"

"For quite a while, yeah. So far, I'm not having much luck. What about you?"

"Not much, I just got here this morning. You even know who you're looking for?"

"Kind of. I keep sensing it's around here...but I'm not sure what to expect..." Asami and Kuvira both continued on their walk for the time being. Asami didn't expect Kuvira to be with her for the trip, but what choice did she had? She didn't want to see anyone die in this desert...


The day turned to night for Kuvira and Asami. That didn't seem to help them out in their struggle through the desert. Turning from scorching hot to North Pole cold in the matter of hours, Kuvira and Asami had to find a way to keep warm (ironically enough). Thanks to Asami's supplies, Asami and Kuvira managed to make a fire in the middle of the desert, their only source of light in the cold night. Asami and Kuvira didn't speak to each other for a good while, just trying to warm up. Eventually, Kuvira did start talking to Asami, telling her what had happened to her before she and Asami met up. Kuvira was telling her about Whoii back in the Foggy Swamp before Asami spoke up again.

"What happened to Whoii?"

"Well, Whoii just collapsed after everything. I'm not sure if it was Lin's rage or the tree that broke it," Kuvira explained, looking down at the fire, the embers dancing in the air. Asami thought over the events in her mind, what Kuvira had to go through in the Foggy Swamp. What got to her, though, was when Kuvira told her about Lin's accusation, reminding her that she was truly an orphan...

"...I'm sorry, Kuvira..."

"Don't be. You don't know what it's like to know you're an orphan at heart."

"You don't know the half of it."

"Don't joke around, I've had no one to look to, my true parents dumped me in Zaofu, they never loved me!"

"At least you HAD someone who looked to you, I was worse off than you!"

"How?" Kuvira's question was more rough than she'd like. Kuvira had gone through plenty bad times and couldn't imagine how Asami Sato was worse off...

"You don't really know what happened to your parents, I know what happened to mine, and they're both dead! I had to grow up without my mother thanks to the triads, and my father betrayed me for the Equalists years ago! And now even he's gone from my life! I'm the real orphan here, not you!" Asami didn't really mean to get so overboard, her voice leaving a slight echo in the empty desert. Kuvira didn't realize Asami truly was without any parents and had to go through without them both so abruptly. For Asami, the fact that they were both gone was something she knew for a long time, yet being mature, she learned to handle it...but sometimes, it was a fact she'd wish wasn't so bare on her and tore her up if she had to admit it to not just others, but to herself. Sure, she was technically old enough to have that slide, but it still hurt her...

"...I'm sorry...I'm so sorry..."

Asami didn't answer her at first, as she laid down by the fire, back to the flames. Kuvira could tell Asami didn't want to talk anymore, so she laid down herself...Asami let out one tear before she too went to sleep...

Few hours passed on, the fire embers dying down to a few glowing ashes of the fire. Still, the night seemed very quiet, not a soul around...Well, none except for a tiny striped lizard, or Gilacorn as they were known. The little fella moved over near the two sleeping travelers, smelling the food both of them had on them. Course, the little thieving lizard would have some trouble snatching off such goodies from creatures much larger than itself. Skittering on the sand, the Gilacorn was soon very close to them, about inches away from Asami's face. The lizard moved around a little more, finding Asami's supplies. A peek in, and it managed to find some bread inside. It also found Asami's portable radio, getting that out of the way rather roughly as it aimed for the bread, but just before it got a hold of it...A long, very distant moan filled the air. Worried, the lizard grabbed the bread and took off just before Asami was awoken by the same noise.

It was very silent, Asami listening to what that sound was. But she didn't hear anything, so she rested her head back down. Just as she closed her eyes, the calls returned again, slightly louder that time. Asami sat upright, trying to hear it again. Instead of waiting, the moans caught her attention again. Asami moved over to Kuvira.

"Psst...Kuvira...Kuvira, wake up," Asami said, trying to nudge her awake, but Kuvira remained asleep. Asami targeted the sound from above and went up the sand dunes to have a look around.

...Something huge was moving in the distance...

Worried, Asami rushed back down, and tried to wake Kuvira again.

"Kuvira, get up...get up," Asami said, shaking her until Kuvira began to wake up again. A bit groggy, Kuvira rubbed her eyes, trying to wake herself up.

"What's wrong?" Kuvira asked, as Asami motioned her to the dunes. Kuvira thought of going back to sleep, but the moans quickly returned, louder than before. Hearing that, Kuvira and Asami both went back up to the top of the dunes. Kuvira and Asami looked on ahead to the dunes before them, seeing something huge move towards them. In the light of the moon, the gigantic creature looked like some sort of lion turtle, though smaller than the real thing. Its body was armored, with dark green fur showing on its chest and back. It also had two large platforms attached to its back, green fur hanging down from it. They both knew it was a Voronon, but two things were especially different from this one. One: its body coloration would fit more for a forest rather than a desert. And second:...It was floating! Gently flying in the sky, the giant Voronon floated along for a while more like some cloud. Eventually, the Voronon rested gently on the sandy earth nearby Kuvira and Asami, both unsure how it would react upon seeing them. Both of them could sense the name of the Voronon, even without the voice in their head telling them.

"Awadil," they both said, equally surprised that the other knew the name of the Voronon. Awadil rested for a brief moment, sensing Kuvira and Asami nearby. For some reason, though, both girls watching the giant beast went out of hiding. Awadil saw them both, but didn't bother to attack them both, as they both walked over.

"Another Voronon. Ready?" Kuvira asked, getting her metal weapons ready. However, Asami got in the way.

"Kuvira, wait a minute...I'm not sure about this time," Asami said, looking to Awadil standing before them. Awadil itself gave a low moan again, gently nudging Kuvira in her side. Kuvira, thinking it over, put away her weapons as Awadil settled down by them both. They both knew the Voronon tried to handle them with plenty of care while killing off whoever else was around. It was confusing and worrying for those they cared about. Kuvira gently set her hand on Awadil's head, the Voronon gently moaning upon her touch...

"I don't understand. These creatures are so dangerous, yet... Gentle," Asami said, looking over what was going on. Kuvira looked in its eyes and noticed something else...the eyes were shimmering...

"I think...I think its dying..."

"Dying?" They both saw the eyes shimmer again, Awadil groaning slightly. Kuvira and Asami were unsure of what to do. The Voronon, they both knew, were deadly, but this one was dying in front of them. Should they let it die, or try to help? But what could they do? Awadil started to nudge them both again, another groan escaping it. After it did, the platforms on its back were lowered down to the ground, gently pushing down on the sand.

"Kuvira? I think it wants to give us a ride."

"A ride? Are you sure?"

Kuvira and Asami looked over the platforms, covered in the grass-like hair. Awadil made another moan again, waiting for them to go on... So eventually, Asami and Kuvira went each upon a platform. Awadil raised both platforms after a bit and soon began to slowly lift off the ground. The hair felt very soft and surprisingly warm, as they started to fly around the Si Wong Desert. It felt slightly magical: such a beast flying around with the star-filled sky. It actually felt like they were simply in some dream. Asami didn't see such a creature fly in the real world before, and Kuvira never saw such an animal fly before period. Awadil's vision was depleting as it was still flying like a cloud, trying to reach somewhere for Kuvira and Asami. The two didn't realize how fast they were actually going, the girl's hair going in the breeze.

They felt happy for a long while, riding along Awadil's platforms.

"This is beautiful," Kuvira said, looking up at the starry night. Asami couldn't help but agree as Awadil continued flying along in the sky. When they both looked on ahead, Asami and Kuvira realized where Awadil was actually going. Or at least an idea where they were going. Up ahead, they could see...Misty Palms Oasis...

Awadil landed a few miles away from the springs, feeling even weaker than before. Kuvira and Asami began to feel the hair turning cold soon after landing, Awadil becoming weaker and weaker. The two platforms landed down on the ground, Asami and Kuvira getting off, and going to Awadil's head. its eyes flickered like a dying light. Kuvira and Asami were unsure what to do, but they both knew right out that Awadil wasn't going to last much longer. Awadil made another rough moan, Asami and Kuvira gently placing their hands on the front of Awadil's head.

As they both did, Awadil gave another, quieter moan in their presence. As it did, suddenly they both got another vision in their heads, though it didn't hurt that time...

The vision began to show an endless plain of bright grass, with Awadil standing in the middle of it. In front of it, a group of people were standing there, one of which raised his hand towards the Voronon. Soon afterwards, Awadil's eyes faded to black and gently settled down onto the plains and into a deep sleep. Time suddenly rushed forward, showing the plains where Awadil laid turning drier and less living than it should. Awadil's body became covered in rising sand...

The plains turned into Si Wong Desert.

The vision ended rather quickly after that, Kuvira and Asami looking to Awadil, the eyes no longer glowing...

Awadil was no more...

Asami and Kuvira looked to each other, then to the town just a ways away. Asami thought to call the others and went over to her portable radio. Kuvira didn't realize she had her portable radio until Asami got it out.

"Asami Sato, calling Team Avatar. You there, Team Avatar?...Team Avatar, do you copy?...Anyone there?..."

Nothing seemed to work. Asami, worried, quickly checked the back compartment of the radio. Somehow, the wires had been messed around with! That Gilacorn must've snapped the wires while moving it out! Asami had nothing to help her fix it, and the place she was at wasn't the best place anyway...

"You could contact them?"

"Well now, I can't. Been tampered with. Come on, let's get to the Oasis, it's not too far." After deciding, Asami and Kuvira started walking back to Misty Palms Oasis. While they were walking, they both looked back to Awadil's body before continuing...

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