|By DragonGirl028||Part of thecontinuity.|
|"I teach the young ladies here the gift of healing because, for starters, the tribes here are run as a patriarchy. Second, well... somebody's got to patch up these knuckleheads when they get frostbite, or get mauled by a pack of wolves! You can never trust a man to go out into this vast, frozen landscape without somehow messing himself up!"|
|— Nenana towhile healing her and .|
Proto-Northern Water Tribe
84 (Book 1: Tension)
5'0" or 1.52m
|Weapon of choice||
Four daughters, six grandchildren
Adak (husband; deceased)
|Chronological and political information|
Proto-Northern Water Tribe
"" (only appearance)
Joan Copeland (if animated)
Nenana is a female waterbender and the shaman of her tribe located miles away from the North Pole. She specializes in the art of healing, and instructs young women of her tribe on how to use their waterbending abilities for various healing purposes. Upon Avatar and her waterbending master, , being rescued from a powerful blizzard by a hunting party from her tribe, she teaches the special sub-skill to Singi, much to Gekkō's envy.
Nenana is a very wise and warm, caring person. She can also be rather sassy at times, however, cracking witty jokes about men and how "they would never survive without us [women], and I don't just mean with regard to the healing..." Her admiration for the healing role women play in the tribes, in addition to her wise-cracking jokes about men, signify her as a gynocentrist.
Nenana spent the first five years of her life growing up in a water lion turtle city, and is one of the few [known] people still alive who has lived during the era of Raava, and been present during the onset of the era of the Avatar.
One day in 9,829 BG, when she was five years old, Nenana was collecting seashells not far away from her lion turtle city when the spirit lights suddenly appeared in the sky, which was incredibly unusual (to say the least) within the more tropical region where she was living. Not long after the lights appeared, multiple residents rushed back into the city, without returning their water to the lion turtle, stating that the spirits were wrecking more havoc than usual. She added that not only were they more aggressive than usual, but they were also darker in coloration, and crossing boundaries by entering the city and causing chaos. However, just a few minutes later, the spirit lights disappeared, and the spirits returned to their normal state and left the area peacefully, silence befalling the area. Later that day, the lion turtle called all of the residents before it and informed them that it would no longer protect them, nor grant them the power of water, and that the world had entered "a new age", signifying the beginning of the era of the Avatar.
Book One: Tension
Introduction to Singi and Gekkō
Nenana meets a weakened Singi and Gekkō at her hut in her tribe's settlement. After being brought to her hut by the tribe's hunting party upon finding them disoriented in the blizzard, Nenana provides them with a warm meal and a much-needed healing session.
Upon noticing Singi's airbender tattoos and robes, she notes that she understands the airbender's shivering and weakness, not being a member of the proto-Water Tribe and thus, not used to the bitter cold temperatures of the polar regions. Glancing over at Gekkō, however, with a smirk, she is "shocked" to find a waterbender, and even more-so, a man, not entirely immune to the effects of the blizzard. At this, Gekkō stutters that he is not from the polar regions, resulting in a [slightly] sarcastic gasp from the elderly woman, who remarks that he "must be more disoriented than he thought", as many members of the proto-Water Tribe have settled in one of the two polar regions upon the onset of the era of the Avatar. Upon Singi's identity as the Avatar being revealed in front of her, Nenana's suspicions are confirmed, noting that there would likely be no other reason why a normally distant "air-wielder" would be in the polar regions, in addition to her sensing "some sort-of spiritual essence" from within the teenager.
After properly introducing herself as well as her occupation as a shaman and healing instructor, Nenana proposes they sit over a bowl of seaweed soup and talk, to which her guests accept.
Reflection on the Harmonic Convergence of 9,829 BG
Over seaweed soup, Singi and Gekkō discuss their reasoning for traveling to the North Pole, as well as the spirit lights show they witnessed one day when she was five years old, and still living in a lion turtle city. With Singi intrigued, Nenana goes on to describe the events of that day, including more hostile, darker-colored, spirits that crossed boundaries and wreaked havoc to those living in the city, and the residents who were out of the city (Nenana included) rushing back to the city without returning their water to the lion turtle. A few minutes after it began, the phenomena ended, with the spirit lights disappearing, and the spirits returning to their normal state and leaving the area, plunging the city and surrounding area into complete silence. Nenana also notes that later that day, the lion turtle called everyone down to inform them that it would no longer provide them protection, nor the element of water, and that the world had entered "a new age". Upon hearing this, Singi explains that Nenana experienced Harmonic Convergence, and gives a more detailed summary of the phenomena, as well as the battle that took place during that time in the Spirit World between Avatar Wan and Vaatu. After the two reflect upon Wan's revolutionary impact on the world, Nenana reassures Singi that, as the Avatar, she will see the spirits at some point in her life.. Nenana mentions that she also saw the display last night, but it "paled in comparison" to a particular display she saw
Teaching Singi Healing and Final Farewells
- Nenana is also the name of a river and a nearby city in Alaska, the latter of the two best known for being the starting point for the 1925 serum run to Nome to combat an incipient diphtheria epidemic.
- Nenana is one of the only people still alive that Singi has met who grew up in a lion turtle city.
- Considering how quickly Wan defeated Vaatu and closed the spirit portals upon the onset of Harmonic Convergence, this is why the phenomena lasted merely a few minutes in the physical world, as opposed to the Harmonic Convergence of 171 AG, which went its full cycle.
- It is heavily implied that the "spiritual essence" Nenana was able to sense from within Singi is Raava.
- Were Nenana an actual animated character, she would be voiced by Joan Copeland, who is best known for her performance in the 1997 Broadway revival of Pal Joey, as well as her award winning performance in the 1981 play The American Clock. Additionally, she also played numerous prominent roles on various soap operas, including Andrea Whiting on Search for Tomorrow and Gwendolyn Lord Abbott on One Life to Live.
- Coincidentally, Copeland also provided the voice of Tenana—an elderly Inuit shaman of her tribe—in the Disney film Brother Bear.
- Another contender for the role was June Foray, a voice actress best known as the voice of such animated characters as Rocky the Flying Squirrel, Lucifer from Disney's Cinderella, Granny from the Warner Bros. cartoons directed by Friz Freleng, and Grandmother Fa from Disney's Mulan and its direct-to-video sequel, Mulan II, among many others.
- Foray died on July 26, 2017 at age 99, likely from natural causes.
- Based on the dating of the Chinese zodiac, Nenana was born in the Year of the Monkey in 9,834 BG. She shares her zodiac animal with the author of the trilogy, as well as .
For the collective works of the author, go here.