|By Omashu Rocks||Genre||Rating||Reviews||Updates|
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|The Beginning of the End|
Zhouray was furious. "Front page. Main story."
The bloodbender sighed. "Calm yourself, Zhouray. I'm sure it isn't that bad." She read the headline, gasped, then devoured the entire article. "This doesn't make any sense! 'Avatar turns herself in'? That picture, it's that girl he's always with! The Cha Jin De girl! How does some non-bending rat get confused with the Avatar? It says here that she's scheduled a press conference where she'll make the official announcement."
The two skilled benders stared at each for a moment, then burst out laughing. For them, the newspaper's inaccuracy was not only surprising but humorous.
"This is hardly anything to laugh about." Hearing the dark, chilling voice of their master made Zhouray and Kimma flinch as the hair on their necks shot up.
The firebender scrambled for a response. "My lord, uhhh, ummm, we were just laughing at how fun it will be to destroy the real Avatar and this impostor."
Onjing ignored his servant's useless rambling. "This is very troubling news. The Avatar has a brief time to find shelter while the United Forces are called off. Clearly, Rohan did not execute his task well."
Kimma, the Isha member closest to Onjing, asked a daring question. "What do you plan to do with him, master?"
"We'll see what the fool does next, and once we can no longer find a use for him, he will die." At those words, Kimma's face was overtaken by her trademark, cynical, smile. "Until then, you two go to this press conference and investigate."
"Are you coming, Lord?"
"I'll be nearby."
Right in front of City Hall, a podium was set up before hundreds of people, in the front were reporters with notepads, cameras, and microphones. Kimma and Zhouray waited for a solid hour before the two Hall doors opened. Slowly and calmly, out came Berani, handcuffed and escorted by metalbending cops. Following her were Chief Beifong and Mayor Shara, both with solemn faces. The girl, who had claimed to be the Avatar, kept a straight face as she brought the microphone to her face.
"Citizens Republic City, and citizens of the world, I appear today not to admit any crime or wrongdoing, but to comply with the demands of the Council and ultimately, the people. I am not a force for evil, nor do I associate with the organization known as the Isha, but if you have determined that it is best for me to surrender, then I shall not resist. Great fear has infected this city, and in my decision I am to alleviate that fear even if only for a moment... I am the Avatar. Take me into custody."
After that line, Berani stepped back from the podium and cameras flashed as an overwhelming number of reporters held microphones up and asked questions, none of which were answered. A police officer promptly came from behind Berani, grabbed her shoulder, and guided her out of the area.
Gasps and shrieks filled the air as the mass of people turned to Councilman Rohan, who stood angrily at the scene. "That's no Avatar!" he shouted fur iously. He was ready to expose the truth and prove that Berani was not who she said she was.
The Earth Kingdom girl simply laughed. "Oh yeah?" She stomped the ground three times, cracking the ground, making a splash of water, and creating a small flame, respectively. Then, she took a deep breath and leapt up in the air before slowly floating back down.
Seeing this display, the other bystanders including Mayor Shara, Chief Beifong, and the media glared at Rohan in disbelief and anger.
The Chairman was flabbergasted. "That's impossible! I swear, this is a trick! I-"
He was interrupted by a young reporter. "Sir, if you didn't even know who the Avatar is, how were you so certain that she was behind the Isha attacks? It seems unlikely that you have evidence of her murdering innocent people if you don't recognize her as the suspect."
Rohan snarled, but tried to compose himself. ""My staff compiled multiple sources of the Avatar's affiliation to the Isha in one report before I read it. There must have been a typo that said he instead of she. That's why I thought he Avatar was male. Honest mistake."
The eager journalist didn't buy Rohan's excuse. He prepared to ask another question, but before he had a chance, the man fainted. The clever Chairman grasped the opportunity to once again be a hero. "Get that man some water! Let's bring him out of the Sun, now!" As a few medics rushed over, Berani was led quietly to the back of a police truck, where she sat on a metal bench alone, bound by strong plastic straps around her legs, arms, feet, hands, and chest. She heard an officer say something to the driver, but could not make out the words due to the metal barrier between her compartment and the driver's seat. All she knew is that when the two were done speaking, the vehicle began to move. Having previously vowed not to cry or show any weakness at all, she closed her eyes, inhaling and exhaling calmly. When her eyes fluttered open, she was taken aback by a bright glow, with an aged Water Tribe woman sitting across from her.
Berani took a heavy sigh of relief. "Avatar Korra! Brek said you would come."
The proud, elderly former Avatar rose and approached the teenager, holding her arms out. She placed one arm on Berani's shoulder, the other on her face. Then, in a beautiful, tranquil moment, both of their eyes glowed.
"You won't be needing those abilities anymore," said the woman, smiling. "Besides, the Spirits don't exactly like it when we grant bending to people born without them." She chuckled. "Something about upsetting the balance of the world."
Berani bowed, noticing that her body was entirely free. "Thank you, Avatar Korra."
The woman simply beamed of joy. "Tell Brek how proud I am of him. His plan may have just saved the world."
"The Tiebreaker round is about to begin!" Thunderous cheers rocked the historic pro-bending arena as the City Cup championship match was minutes away from being decided. The regulation match didn't produce a winner, and the Avengers simply needed to win the Tiebreaker to proceed with their plans.
The referee spoke to Kimma, the team captain. "Which element to do you choose?"
"Water." Her answer was loud and clear, and excitement erupted among the crowd.
"Very well..." replied the ref. "The Avengers select water! The waterbenders of both teams will meet in the center of the arena to compete in the Tiebreaker round."
While Kimma complied with the ref's instructions, she stared down her opponent, smiling wickedly. The two met in a small circle, and it rose to create a separate platform.
"On the count of three, the round will begin," announced ref. "One... two... three!"
A buzz sound rang through the stadium, and the two contenders went at it. A gush of water whizzed to the right of Kimma's face before she shot another right back at the enormous man on the other side. It hit him in the chest, but he hardly flinched. He made a sweeping motion with his leg, and a stream tripped Kimma, but as she topped over, another blast hit her in the stomach, propelling her upwards. In the air, she did a flip and fired two shots at the man both hitting him in the face. He was knocked to the edge of the platform and charged forward, trying to hit Kimma with an uppercut. After she evaded the attack, she sidestepped and let out a tremendous scream, forcing an incredible blast of water at the challenger, who tumbled all the way across the platform right back to the edge. For a moment, he seemed fine, but suddenly, he twitched and fell of the side.
As the large man hit the ground on the arena floor below, confetti fell from the ceiling as the ring announcer bellowed cheers of The Avengers victory. "And The Avengers have clinched the championship with an incredible showing from their amazing Waterbender. That was the most impressive Tiebreaker I've seen in years, folks! What a way to end the tournament!"
Brek, Kaeta, Zola, and Yue weren't paying attention to the radio coverage of the match coming from the building next door. They were busy brainstorming as to where the Isha could be located.
When the people listening to the radio increased the volume, a thought came into Kaeta's mind. "I feel like a pro-bending match that's packed would be a perfect place for Onjing to strike. He could kill so many people. Do you think they're in danger?"
Brek was only concerned about one person, Berani. "I can't believe I let her do that! She could be killed! I can't imagine life without her."
Trying not to tear up, Yue consoled the Avatar. "I am confident that she is okay. They wouldn't just kill the Avatar like that. She's probably in a cell, not comfortable, but safe."
"Hey guys," Kaeta butt in, "does that voice sound familiar to you?" He was referring to the woman being interviewed on the radio. She was the Waterbender who won the Tiebreaker.
The four were completely silent, listening to her words carefully. Brek thought he recognized her voice too, but he couldn't put his finger on it.
It was Zola who figured it out. "Kimma! That's Kimma!" Brek and Kaeta then realized she was right. One of their greatest enemies had just won the championship. Yue gasped. "No!" When the others asked her why she was so distraught, she reminded them that the winning team wins a banquet with the Chief of Police, the Mayor, and the United Republic Council.
Brek jumped to his feet. "We have to warn everybody!"
"No," replied the Water Tribe Councilwoman. "The three of us will go to the banquet, but as for you, it's imperative now more than ever to have your past lives' wisdom. Stay here and meditate."
At first, the Avatar protested, but Yue was right. Brek needed Korra's help. He needed all the Avatars' help.
The dinner toasting winning team began less than an hour after the match was over. Republic City's most influential people were all gathered in a massive dining hall, with the Mayor, the Police Chief, Chairman Rohan, and the Avengers sharing a table on an elevated stage near the front of the room. They were the guests of honor. Trying to speed everything up, Rohan raised a water glass and tapped a fork to it, getting everyone's attention.
"Ladies and Gentlemen. Madame Mayor, Chief Beifong, Mr. Pao, Mr. Tufoi, Mrs. Sato, distinguished guests, and of course, tonight's victors, it is an honor to welcome you all to this year's City Cup Banquet honoring not just the winning team, but the sport of pro-bending and what it has done for our glorious Republic City."
The guests clapped politely then slowly stopped to let Rohan continue, but he didn't. He simply remained standing, smiling oddly. Kimma, Zhouray, and Sangti were smiling too.
The Chief looked confused. "Is everything alright, Mr. Chairman?"
The response came from a mysterious voice echoing throughout the room. "Of course everything is alright, fool." As if by magic a swirling black cape appeared in the center of the room, and it zoomed in and out of tables as people screamed and ducked. Finally, the figure stopped just before the guests of honor. Onjing stood up straight, and proceeded with his task. As the Airbender inhaled, all but Rohan, Kimma, Zhouray, and Sangti began to suffocate and choke. One suffering Councilman glanced up at Rohan, realizing what a mistake he had made by believing him. Chief Beifong was nearly dead, and Mayor Shara was completely motionless. One by one, more and more people collapsed.
Rohan laughed. "Did I make you proud my Lord?"
Onjing turned his head to the Chairman. "No." He shot forward his right arm and a gust of wind blasted Rohan into the wall, where Zhouray finished him with a ball of fire.
On the outskirts of the city, in an old, abandoned warehouse, Soza began to unlock box after box, each one containing some of the risen dead that had been delivered as lumber, fish, and other things.
"Go!" ordered Soza. "Fulfill our destiny. Make Kofaru proud of all of us!"
The former military captain then heard a bellowing voice from the sky. "You've served your purpose well Soza."
The woman was confused at first, but her face soon turned to fear. "No! Please!" There was a flash of light and her body was on the floor, dead. Her body was trampled by the massive army she had just released, charging out into the city to wreak havoc.
"I don't understand, Yangchen." Brek was deeply troubled. He had decided to ask Avatar Yangchen of the Air Nomads for advice first, recalling learning that she was one of the wisest of Avatars. "I don't see any way to stop Onjing. He's been one step ahead this whole time."
"That is true, young earthbender. But what if he wasn't one step ahead?"
"I don't understand."
"In my lifetime, I dabbled in a theory. A theory that not everything was set in stone. Just as we are free and subject to change, history is free and can change. The universe wasn't meant to be a place where the forces of good had to succeed on the first try. "
"But how is this relevant? What can I do?"
"You know of three dimensions, Avatar. We're too advanced to think that there is only one particle of matter or that everything is flat, but why are we not advanced enough to understand that there is a fourth dimension?"
"And what is that?"
- Berani's line "I am the Avatar. Take me into custody." was inspired by both the movie The Dark Knight and by Katara's mother, Kya.
- The following line is meant to be very ironic: "Brek, Kaeta, Zola, and Yue weren't paying attention to the radio coverage of the match coming from the building next door. They were busy brainstorming as to where the Isha could be located."
There's only one chapter left, and I hope you have enjoyed reading the tale of Avatar Brek and his friends as much as I've enjoyed writing it. For me, it's really quite sad to be ending this adventure, but I can't tell you all how much I appreciate you- the fans. You've been great, really!
For the collective works of the author, go here.