Pathik surrounded by nature
The Guru, The Badgermole, and the Ugly
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Avatar: Aftermath and Burning Earth


Book 1


Chapter 8

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Chapter 8: The Guru, the Badgermole, and the Ugly

As Team Avatar continued to wolf down their delicious Gemsbok Bull, Yun began to tell them about his journey.

"My first Earthbending teacher was the King of Omashu, Bumi. He taught me the rock glove technique and how to submerge people in earth." He gestured toward Sokka. "Like I did with him."

Aang grinned. "You know Bumi?"

"Well, yeah. He was my teacher. Have you met him before?"

"He and I have been friends since before the War started."

Yun's eyes widened. "He's that old?! I can't believe he's still such a great Earthbender!"

"Yeah, we used to hang out when we were kids."

"You still are a kid." Sokka interjected, pointing his fork at Aang for a split second before tearing into an Egg Custard Tart.

Katara frowned. "Sokka, you interrupted." She looked at Yun. "Continue and please ignore my brother." Suki coughed to stifle a laugh.

"Anyway, during the invasion of Omashu..."

"So Yun," Sokka began, "Why don't you launch big rocks like Bumi? Why use those other techniques?"

"Sokka!" Katara cried.

Yun chuckled. "It's all right. To tell you the truth," He glanced off to the side. I'm weak, "I have a—disability that prevents me from ever lifting any stone or slab of earth much bigger than an Earth Soccer ball, apparently."

Ty Lee's face was filled with concern. "What do you mean?"

Yun pursed his lips and looked down at the table. "Well, I once tried lifting a rock about the size of a cabbage cart—"

"We know what one of those looks like." Sokka said while Katara and Suki both stared daggers at him.

"—and it put me down for a couple of days. I felt this... this pain in my head. The doctor said it could've killed me."

"That's terrible!" Ty Lee exclaimed.

Yun turned to Aang. "As I was saying, Bumi sent me away for my safety during the Siege of Omashu. I was lead to the Cave of Two Lovers," At the mention of the cave, both Aang and Katara blushed, which Yun only noticed once he felt their heartbeats. "And I got lost."

"At least you didn't have any stupid singing groups following—aaghpth!" Sokka's rant was silenced by the sudden application of nearby river water to his face, supplied by Katara.

Suki burst into a fit of laughter as Sokka steamed, soaked in his seat. "Go on," she said as she regained her breath, "This is very interesting."

Yun sighed. "The only thing that saved me from wandering that cave for a month was the badgermoles. They recognized my weakness and helped develop my Earthbending."

"And they led you out of the cave?" Aang asked.

"Yeah, without them it would've taken me awhile to find my own way out."
Katara looks sorrowful

"Where did you learn Chi Blocking?" Ty Lee asked, excited to move on.

"Well, after barely escaped Ba Sing Se with my life," he stated coldly while Ty Lee hung her head, "I met a crazy old man on my way east from the city. His name was, uh... Pathik, I think. He called himself a guru."

"He taught me how master the Avatar State!" Aang exclaimed.

Katara pulled water from her water skin. "Do you want some of this too?" Aang immediately quieted down.

Yun inched farther away from Katara, hoping to avoid the next barrage. "He taught me how chi flow works in the body and how to best disable different benders. He tried to get me to understand the principle by drinking this gross..." He shuddered. "I don't even want to know what it was."

"Onion and banana juice." Aang groaned. He didn't even get a chance to react as Katara splashed him with water. Momo added insult to injury by flying over and licking it off of his face. Yun laughed along with everyone else, but he didn't notice that Ty Lee wasn't laughing.

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