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|From the Ashes|
August 17 2009
From the Ashes is the second chapter of Avatar: Guardian.
After hearing an explosion, the team gets on Appa to investigate. Zuko tells the citizens of the capital city to follow them to assist. Aang is reluctant to allow this, but goes along with it. When they get to the prison, they see guards in black and gold. They battle their way through to Ozai's cell, but he's missing. When they get back up, they find a battle going on.
Appa soars off the ground but is flying at a low altitude. Team Avatar sees the Fire Nation Prison on fire. Zuko uses this opportunity to call to the residents of the city. "Please, if any of you are skilled warriors or benders, get to the prison as fast as you can!"
Katara, confused, asks, "What are you doing?"
Zuko quickly replies, "Some of those people may have been in the war; they need to help maintain peace!"
Toph says coolly, "Anything that means I don't have to do everything like usual."
Aang, concerned, looks back from the saddle and says to Zuko "I don't think that it's that good of an idea. I won't be able to fight and protect all of them."
Zuko, realizing Aang's distress, tells him "Listen Aang, they can protect themselves. Plus it will let us get to the leaders and stop this faster. It will prevent others from getting hurt!"
Aang, knowing that Zuko is right, sighs and says, "You're right, Zuko. Let's do this!" He jumps off of Appa and crashes into the ground causing pillars to rise out of the ground, knocking the guards into the sky. The rest of the team gets off of Appa and Toph encases the guards in earth so they cannot escape. Aang wonders out loud, "What would they want here?"
Zuko coolly says with a hint of sarcasm in his voice, "A certain Phoenix King that we all know so well."
Katara, confused, asks why they would want him. Zuko pauses and responds "Who knows... I certainly wouldn't want him."
Toph turns her head toward him before calling his bluff "You do realize that I know that you're lying?"
Aang, ignoring this, resolves not to allow Ozai to be harmed and asks Zuko where in the prison he was being held. Zuko tells everyone how he had an underground level constructed just for Ozai. Toph and Aang Earthbend a tunnel near the entrance to get to the cell. While on their way down, Toph is making the tunnel deeper while Aang and Zuko keep it bright. Eventually, Toph crashes through a wall. Zuko goes into the room ahead of the rest of the team and confirms that this is Ozai's cell, but he's gone.
Zuko, while looking back and signaling for the rest of the group to enter, says, "This is it. I had this room constructed specifically for him. I made a passageway from a few boulders nearby directly to here. There is no way that..." He realizes that Ozai isn't in the cell.
Hunt for the Phoenix King
Katara enters next, and is shocked to see the empty cell. She sees the bars melted from the outside. The entire team sees a bird made of fire burning on the cell wall. Zuko, stunned at his lost father, "But how? No one knew about this room!"
Aang asks about guards and Zuko tells him about the three master Firebender guards. They run up the staircase leading to the exit Zuko had made, and see the guards, dead. They circle around the front of the prison, only to find a mad brawl. The civilians that Zuko ordered to fight are doing poorly against the invaders, who are all dressed in black and gold. The guards Toph trapped are still in their cases. When Team Avatar shows up, many invaders knock their opponents down and launch fire blasts at the group. Zuko and Aang block the blast while Toph launches a fissure towards the attackers. One is engulfed in the ground while the others manage to leap out of the way and continue firing at the group. The group disperses the attack and begins fighting the invaders. Aang battles 6 of the invaders at once. After using an air blast to distract them, he makes a boulder come out of the ground and launches it at the attackers. He then creates a massive fire blast that engulfs the boulder and crashes into the ground. The resulting implosion knocks out almost all of the invaders Aang was fighting.
When the dust cleared, Aang noticed that the invaders were gone. There were fires everywhere and the injured bodies of civilians scattered in the clearing. Katara moves in to start healing them while Aang and Zuko put out the fires. Aang noticed the number of bodies and asks, "What happened to all of them?"
Katara looks up from her healing and replies, "They used your attack as cover to get away. We lost them."
Aang turns to look at the injured civilians and says, "No, that's not what I meant. Why are all of those civilians hurt?"
Katara tells him how everyone stopped to look at Aang making his attack, and how the invaders attacked the citizens before retreating. Aang, hanging his head, believes it's his fault. Zuko blames himself, saying "I told them to come here, it's my fault Aang."
Toph, trying to change the subject, begins with "Hey at least we captured some of their guys! Hehe..."
Katara, trying to cheer Aang up, "See, it wasn't for nothing!"
Zuko, looking toward the imprisoned invaders, "I have plans for these traitors..."
- Ozai will be back.
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