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|One Step Closer|
November 30, 2011
Previously on Around the World (Again)...
Team Avatar decides to train up to fight Long Feng and his followers. They visit the Treetop Hideout to do so and later visit Omashu.
One Step Closer
Appa kicked off the ground and flew into the sea of clouds as the crowd below waved at the leaving group. The gang waved back at the Freedom Fighters, thanking them for their help.
It was a beautiful day, just like the day before. There was a breeze and the clouds were as fluffy as ever.
Aang sat on Appa's head, talking to his friends behind him.
"Look, Aang, I know you want to see Bumi and all, but do we really need to go to Omashu?" inquired Sokka. "I mean we've already trained and all. I think we're ready to face Long Feng."
"Can't be too safe, Sokka," answered Aang.
Sokka shrugged and began to talk to Suki.
Katara, on Appa's head, was next to Aang. They hadn't spoken about what had happened the night before and Aang didn't want to remind her; it might make her sad, Aang thought.
Aang looked at Katara. She seemed to be pondering about something.
"Are you okay?" asked Aang.
Katara slowly nodded.
But then she shook her head. "That's impossible," muttered Katara.
The thirteen year old Air Nomad turned to face her. "What?"
"Hama. She can't Bloodbend without the full moon. It's just not possible. It- no! It's not possible. How could she do that? I don't care how much she's practiced Bloodbending. It's just not possible!" Katara sighed.
"What are you talking about, Katara?"
"When Hama and Long Feng attacked us back at Ba Sing Se," began Katara. "Hama Bloodbended me. But it was daylight. The moon wasn't out. And Bloodbending can only happen during the full moon. It's not possible. She told me that she's been practicing, but it's still not possible. I've been thinking about this for while, but I just can't- I-I just don't know."
"Don't worry about it, Katara. Everything will be okay," Aang reassured her, putting his arm around her back, a smile on his face.
"The Cave of Two Lovers!" Sokka shouted, pointing at a large mountain. "Omashu won't be far from here."
There were several mountains there. It was the Kolau Mountains.
"The Cave of Two Lovers?" asked Zuko.
"Yeah. We entered it along with Chong and his friends," explained Sokka. "My poor forehead."
Zuko looked confused, but asked no questions.
Aang and Katara exchanged looks, blushing. "Good times, right?" said Aang.
Katara blushed even more, as did Aang.
"There it is!" Sokka pointed at a magnificent city. Omashu looked just as Aang remembered, that is before it was captured by the Fire Nation.
There was a pathway leading to a gate which led into the great city. The city itself was built on three hills, the Royal Palace located on the tallest one. There were several houses, shops, and restaurants located throughout the city.
"Yip Yip!" Appa began to descend at Aang's command.
He landed before the pathway. Everyone jumped off Appa.
"What do we about Appa?" inquired Katara.
"We'll tell the guards to watch him," said Sokka.
"We won't be long, buddy." Aang petted Appa and set off with the others down the path to Omashu.
Two guards stood in front of the gates, speaking with a man, a cart full of cabbages in front of him.
"More cabbages!" a tall, guard said.
The other guard, tough looking and average sized, picked up a cabbage.
"And rotten ones, at that! Don't you ever learn!?"
Kicking the ground, the tall guard Earthbended the cabbages off the path and into the depths of the Kolau Mountains.
"No! MY CABBAGES!" yelled the Merchant, looking over the pathway.
The Merchant continued to look down into the Kolau Mountains as Team Avatar passed by.
"Why he keeps returning, I'll never know," the guard commented.
The gang walked up to the duo.
"Welcome to Omashu," the tall guard said to the septet, opening the gates to let them in.
Aang spoke to the guards. "Can you guys watch my bison?" Aang pointed to Appa's location. "My name's Aang, I'm the Avatar."
"Yes, sir." The tall guard nodded. "Anything for the Avatar."
"Thanks!" Aang followed the others into Omashu.
Once inside it, Sokka said, "They sure are nicer than before."
"Not to that poor cabbage guy," Suki told him.
Ignoring this, Sokka told them, "Maybe it's because the War's over. The security isn't nearly as high as it was before."
"Come on, let's get to the Royal Palace." Katara began to walk forward, passing by all the mail chutes. Smiling, Aang recalled all those times he and his friends rode these things.
"Bumi!" Aang smiled upon seeing his friend.
They were in the throne room, standing at the door. The room was painted green and at the end of the room stood a chair, above which was the Earth Kingdom's emblem.
King Bumi sat on the chair, hair white, clothes green. The hundred and thirteen year old smiled at the sight of his visitors. A guard stood on his right. Bumi seemed to be having a conversion with him, prior to the gang's entrance.
"Aang, it's good to see you. And you still haven't changed much," said Bumi. "Oh well. Welcome everyone. What are you doing here?"
"We're visiting our old friends around the world," explained Aang. "And we're also here to-"
"Aang, you missed my birthday," said Bumi. "We had a party, as well as a feast. No matter, let's feast now."
"But Bumi," began Aang. "Listen to me. While we love your feasts, we're, um, here to train."
"Train?" questioned Bumi. "Why?"
"Well," Aang thought of how he could tell Bumi without telling him of the threat. He looked at the others, hoping they would help. "Um..we're..having a..tournament?"
"Yeah," said Katara. "A tournament, at the Southern Water Tribe, where we're headed to. And, um, it's been a long time since we fought or trained. We could use your help."
Bumi stared at them, but then spoke. "Great! Let's go outside."
The King of Omashu stood up and began to walk to the door, his guard following him.
The duo, walked through the door, the gang behind them.
"A better idea would be to train in the arena, but I'd like some fresh air. Sitting in that throne room can really tire someone," spoke Bumi.
He looked a Momo, who sat on Aang's shoulder.
"Looking to master more jings, Momo?" asked Bumi. Momo chirped as Bumi laughed.
After walking through another door, the nonet were outside the palace, looking down on the great city of Omashu. Reaching the railing, they stopped.
Bumi looked at the gang, smiling. "Now, where's Toph? I'm ready for round two."
Aang looked at Bumi, confused. Katara however, explained what happened to the Blind Bandit.
Afterward, Bumi stared at Katara, but didn't say anything. He looked out to his kingdom, finally speaking. "She'll find her way, eventually."
There was a silence.
"Well, no use moping around about it," spoke Bumi. "Let's go."
"And where exactly are we going?" questioned Sokka as they group walked left.
"There's an open area near the palace, perfect for practicing," explained Bumi.
It was a large grassy area. Three walls surrounded it, one side being the entrance.
"It's perfect," said Aang, looking around.
"Now then," began Bumi. "What is it that you want to train in?"
"How about a training field?" said Sokka. "There are.." Sokka counted up the people. "..nine of us. Eight, actually. Sorry Momo, but no one's going to fight you. You'll have to stay out."
Chirping, Momo flew to the top of one of the walls, resting while the others trained.
Sokka continued. "Four of us can stay on that side of the area." Sokka pointed to the west side of the grassy area. "The others'll stay on that side." He pointed left. "The west side needs something to protect so the east can try and collect it. But what?" Sokka looked around. His eyes widened when he saw the perfect thing. "Momo, come down here."
The lemur flew down.
Sokka gestured to him. "Momo will be the thing that we're fighting for. And this actually better, because we have to be extra careful with him, just like if someone was actually captured. Okay, Bumi, his guard, Katara, and Zuko, over there." Sokka pointed west. "Aang, Mai, Suki, and I, this side." He pointed east.
"Everyone get ready."
They stretched and prepared for the training session. Sokka explained the rules. "There's only one rule: no permanent damage. Okay, ready....Now!"
An hour of training passed. It was pretty good, thought Aang. Nothing bad happened, except the fact that Aang accidentally threw a boulder into the city (My CABBAGES!).
"Great job, Team Avatar!" complimented Sokka.
They were back in the throne room, resting. Momo had followed them into the room after the training session was finished.
Aang turned to face the King of Omashu, who was seated on his throne, his guard next to him. "Bumi, can I talk to you?"
Bumi stared, puzzled, but he nodded. He dismissed the guard.
"Well, um," Aang thought of how to say his thoughts. He could not longer hide the threat that was happening. He told Bumi of Long Feng and his followers.
"Another threat?" said Bumi, in his regular friendly voice. "Don't people get tired of war? I know I am."
"But, Bumi," spoke Aang. "What do I do about Long Feng? I can't kill him or the Dai Li. I can take away Long Feng's bending, but what about the Dai Li? There too many of them. Energybending them would take days."
Bumi now spoke in a serious tone. "Aang, you need to do what's best for the world. And sometimes, that includes killing people."
Aang turned his head, disappointed. "I thought you'd be different than everyone else. I thought maybe you'd understand. I contacted so many people about what I should do with Ozai and all of them said I should kill him. Why doesn't anyone understand?"
"I think the better question is, why don't you understand?" Aang said nothing, so Bumi continued. "Aang, killing is a terrible thing. But it's the only way to bring peace. Don't you think the world has suffered enough? A hundred years of pain, suffering, death. Do you really want that to happen again, Aang? You're the Avatar, and it's your duty to protect the world. Isn't that why the Avatar was created? To maintain balance around the world."
Finally, Aang spoke. "So, what should I do?"
"I can't tell you what to do. You know what you have to do," said Bumi. "Confront this threat, and protect the world." He paused, but then spoke, his friendly voice returning. "Now Aang, what are you going to do?"
"I don't know...at least not yet. But I do know one thing: I have to do everything I can to stop Long Feng. I'm the Avatar, and I have to do whatever I can to protect the Four Nations. I've failed the world several times before. But it won't happen again. Not this time... Not ever again."
"We have to go Bumi. We're in a hurry. There's still have a lot to do until we face Long Feng. Thanks Bumi, for everything." Aang hugged his hundred and thirteen year old friend.
The Air Nomad and his friends walked to the door. They were about to exit until, "Aang!" called Bumi. The Avatar turned around. "I hope you think like a mad genius!"
"Bye, Bumi!" Aang waved at the King, smiling. The gang left the palace and, soon, Omashu.
"Hey, buddy," said Aang as he and the others approached the giant bison.
"Lets get going, guys," said Katara.
The gang jumped on Appa.
"Wish we could've stayed longer, but there's work to be done," said Aang.
"This was, without a doubt, the shortest trip ever," remarked Sokka. Everyone laughed. "To Kyoshi Island."
Following a "Yip Yip," Appa kicked off the ground and flew off to their next destination. They were one step closer to finishing their trip...as well as the threat.
- Sokka saying "My poor forehead" is a reference to how many times he smacked himself on the forehead in "The Cave of Two Lovers."
- Bumi saying "Now, where's Toph? I'm ready for round two" is a reference to the comic "Bumi vs. Toph, Round One," in which the duel ended in a tie. Also Aang looked confused when Bumi said this, because he, as well as Momo, were absent when the duel happened.
- Originally, Zuko and Mai were to stay with Appa, but the author decided against it; he didn't like the idea of them staying behind.
- Sokka saying "This was, without a doubt, the shortest trip ever" is a reference to the chapter's length.
I'm pretty unhappy with this chapter. I feel it's very rushed and the writing wasn't up to standard, in my opinion. However, I know that the next one will be much better. Again, I apologize for the quality of this chapter.
Originally, there was a deleted scene that was a reference to the "The Promise Part 1", because I read some of the leaks (I couldn't help myself. I'm weak when it comes to spoilers...). However, I know that several people don't like spoilers and like to be surprised, so I didn't put it in so as to not anger anyone.
I hope you all liked this chapter. Like the titles says, I'm one step closer to finishing this, my first fanon. I definitely want to make the finale as epic as possible. Thanks for reading,
This chapter is dedicated to. ARG is, like so many other users, kind and helpful. ARG writes a fanon himself, " " (yes, that's right, promotion! Note: ARG didn't ask me to promote the fanon. I just think that others should read it even though...). I myself have not read the fanon (yet), but I have read the plot, which seems very promising, and reviews, which have praised the series. But that aside, ARG is a great fanon admin and a great friend overall. Thanks for all you do, ARG!
Please don't ask to be dedicated. And please don't think that I'm singling out users when I dedicate them. You all are great and friendly users (as long as you're not trolls or rude). Don't worry, I have a great idea that will benefit everyone. You'll all see in the last chapter.
For the collective works of the author, go here.
|Around the World (Again) Chapters|
|Prologue - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Epilogue|