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|The Full Moon|
January 17, 2014
Korra and her parents hear a knock at the door. Tonraq goes to open it, letting Katara in with a warm smile.
"Master Katara, please come in," Tonraq said as he bows his head in respect for his daughter's master.
Korra walks up to Katara. Katara kneels down as far as her aging bones let her, saying, "Ready to go on our night lesson?"
Korra, almost jumping in excitement says, "You bet I am!"
Korra's burst of excitement makes Katara smile. She opens the door, letting Korra out first. "I'll bring her home before it gets too late. Don't worry, I'll keep a good eye on her and make sure she's safe."
"We know you will," Senna says happily. "Just have fun and be careful."
Katara shuts the compound door behind her. Her and Korra, start walking off deep into the snowy mountains. Even though Korra is stubborn about it, Katara holds her hand to make sure she doesn't get lost.
"I know you're a big girl, but I'd just be crushed if I lost sight of you. Plus it's getting darker and it might get a little scary out here for you," Katara says lovingly.
"I'm not scared of the dark!" Korra says angrily. "I just want to get this lesson over with!"
Katara's face saddens at Korra's tantrum. She's never seen Korra be so unhappy about a lesson. "I know it's probably past your bedtime, but there's no need to be cranky. This lesson will be over before you know it."
The two continue walking through the many blizzardy hills, until they reach one that Katara thinks is a perfect one to sit down at. "Alright, we're here," Katara says as she lets go of Korra's hand.
Korra sits down, exhausted from all the walking, sits down, and falls flat on her back, groaning. "Finally! I thought we'd never make it!"
Katara can't help, but laugh at Korra's statement. "Sorry about the walk, but one thing about the Avatar is that they do all sorts of traveling, so I guess I'm teaching you two lessons tonight. But don't worry, traveling gets easier once you get yourself an animal guide."
Korra's eyes grow wide at the sound of that. She sits up quickly, now curious about what Katara just said. "Animal guide? What's that?"
"An animal guide is a special pet for the Avatar that travels around with them for most, if not all their lives. Aang's animal guide was a flying bison named Appa," Katara explained. "In time you'll get an animal guide too. I don't know what kind of animal or when you'll get it, but it'll happen someday." Katara, now realizing she's getting off topic of the actual lesson, starts the session. "You're probably wondering why I decided to teach you something at night rather than during the day."
Korra nods at Katara with a blank expression. "Well first I want to say that I'm very proud of you. You've improved on waterbending everyday since our first lesson, and I know you're ready to get into more challenging moves."
The sound of that makes Korra smile big and wide. She practically gasped at the sound of those words. "REALLY?" Korra asks with excitement. "YOU REALLY THINK SO?"
"Really," Katara replies. "But before we start with those moves, I have an important lesson for you tonight more important than any lesson that involves waterbending. As you can see from the sky, we have a full moon tonight. Just beautiful, isn't it?"
Korra nods her head again.
"Well a long time ago, thousands of the Avatar lifetimes probably, the original waterbenders learned how to waterbend from the moon. The Water Tribe is the only culture of the four nations to learn an element that wasn't from an animal. Our ancestors watched as the moon made the water push and pull and learned how to do it themselves. Have you ever waterbended at night time, Korra?"
"No, just during the day," Korra replies.
"Well after this lesson is over, I want you to bend any move you want. At night time for waterbenders, our ability becomes stronger. Another thing about the moon is a spirit, but used to be a human. And Aang, my brother, Sokka, and I were all very fortunate enough to meet her." Katara turns over, facing Korra with a smirk on her face. "Sokka especially."
"How come?" Korra asks.
"The Moon Spirit, or Princess Yue as she was in her human form, was Sokka's first girlfriend."
Korra gags at the word 'girlfriend'. "Gross, mushy gushy love."
Katara laughs at Korra's statement. "I wouldn't be laughing if I were you. Someday you'll fall in mushy gushy love with a certain lucky boy."
Korra rolls her eyes. "Well not some day soon."
"Anyway," Katara continues, "Yue was born a very sick and weak baby. Everyone thought she was going to die at one point, but one night, she was placed in a spirit oasis pond under the full moon, turning her brown hair white, giving her life. When we were at the North Pole, a terrible Fire Nation man named Zhao killed the moon spirit, so Yue, having some life in her from the spirit, gave it back."
Korra was stunned by the information she's just been given. Her eyes got wide, but her expression was rather saddened. "Wow," she finally said. "How brave of her."
"Indeed it was," Katara replied. Katara and Korra had a moment of silence. "Well, I thought I'd bring you out here not just so you could see Yue, but tonight is as you can tell a full moon, meaning that your waterbending abilities are at its strongest right now. Most people I've known that are waterbenders have used their abilities under the full moon were for good... except a couple."
Korra raised her eyebrow. "What do you mean?"
"On one of our travels while in the Fire Nation, we met an old woman named Hama. She seemed to be very nice at first, and turned out to be a waterbender from the Southern Tribe. You see, when my grandmother was a little girl, the Fire Nation attacked the Southern Tribe taking all the waterbenders. Hama was the last one captured and until I was born, there were no waterbenders in the Southern Tribe at all. They locked Hama away in a prison cell, and made sure they couldn't bend water by all means. But one day, Hama realized that where there is life, there is water. That's how she learned and taught herself the most terrifying, dangerous, and is illegal form of bending there is; bloodbending. When you control the body of someone else from the inside." Katara turned around, now facing Korra, looking her dead in the eye. "Korra. I will teach you everything I know when it comes to bending, but I will NOT teach you bloodbending! It will turn you into a monster which is why I had it outlawed. It will not make you better at waterbending at all. Promise me that you will never bloodbend."
Korra, now frightened by Katara's tone of voice promised Katara on that day that she would never bloodbend for as long as she lived. Katara walked over and sat down next to Korra, putting her arm around her back. "I didn't mean to make you scared, I just want you to know that I'm serious when I say not to bloodbend."
Korra, now more calm, says, "I know you are. Have you ever bloodbended?"
Katara sighed deeply. "Yes, I have. Once to save Aang and Sokka from hurting each other because of Hama controlling them, and a second time when trying to find out who the killer of my mother was. I wasn't proud of either event, but I haven't done it since, and I won't ever do it again."
There was a short pause between the two. They just looked up at the sky and stared at the moon. Katara stood up again, looking at Korra with a big smile on her face. "Okay, lesson's over," she said. "Why don't you choose a waterbending move of your choice. Feel the power of the full moon."
"Okay," Korra replied. Korra stood up, and started to decide on her move. She's learned so many over the past month that it's a hard decision for her to make. Out of nowhere, she started to get into her stance, her feet flat on the icy ground. She bent some ice from the hill, now turning it to liquid, and performed a move known as 'Streaming the Water'. She made the water go around and spiral, twist, and turn. As she performed this move, she could feel more strength and power due to the effects under the full moon. Eventually, she just let the water fall back down on the hill, turning back to ice.
"Wow," Korra said amazed. "I could feel the energy of that so much more."
"Maybe we should start practicing at night more often," Katara suggested.
Korra just shook her head at that idea.
Katara and Korra became hand in hand once again, and started to walk back to the compound. The two waterbenders talked some more about the full moon and bloodbending. Katara told Korra the story about Yakone, and how he was the most powerful bloodbender ever until Aang took his bending away. The two were almost at the compound when Korra started to get tired. She was yawning a lot and became very droopy-eyed. Korra couldn't take another step, and she just collapsed on the ground, falling into a deep sleep. Katara, who gasped at first due to Korra passing out, just decided to carry Korra all the way back home. When they reached the compound, Tonraq and Senna were waiting for them outside.
"Korra fell asleep and collapsed on the ground on the way back," Katara explained. "She did very well tonight."
Korra's parents couldn't help, but smile at the sound of that.
"Well thanks for bringing her home safe and under your care," Tonraq replied. "We'll see you tomorrow, Master Katara."
"Goodnight," Katara said as she started to walk away, waving at them.
When Korra woke up the next morning, she was confused as to how she got in her bed since her last memories were of her outside, but Senna came in and told her everything.
Korra told her parents that the lesson she had with Katara was the best lesson she'd had so far.
And to this day, it still is.
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