|By The Bos||Genre||Rating||Reviews||Updates|
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|The New Direction|
February 4, 2011
The New Direction is the fifty fifth chapter of.
Both Team Avatar and the choose different paths to follow.
walks through the halls of a ship, glancing around for something interesting. Nothing but dimly lit metal walls. He needed something, and luckily, he would get it. An older official walks up to him, saluting and giving his message. "Colonel Zhian, you are hereby summoned to appear before . He has something to tell you."
"Perfect. I've been looking for something to do," Zhian mutters to himself. He salutes the official and heads towards Jiang's chamber. Walking through the open doorway, Zhian bows to the Admiral, the new leader of the.
"Greetings Colonel," Jiang says calmly. Zhian noted a change in the old man's voice; it seemed less stressed and somehow more authoritative. "I've got a job for you."
"Anything sir. I am anxious to take out any target you wish."
"I know you are. You've done quite well in the past," Jiang begins, prompting a smile from Zhian. "But we do not know exactly what the mission will be."
"How am I going to lead a mission that has no direction?" Zhian asks blatantly.
Jiang's eyes flash. "Temper your tongue. You are to help decide upon that. The meeting is in an hour; be there."
Zhian nods, bows, and leaves. He walks to the deck of the ship and looks at the sun. Breathing deeply, he feels its warmth. He decides to spend his time before the meeting here.
Zuko paces through a room in the Northern Air Temple; his face is contorted in a scowl. Eventually, he moves to his bed and sits down, staring intently at the wall for no reason. The lamps in the room blaze brighter with his every exhale. The Fire Lord was enraged; he had lost his mother after just getting her back. He was alone, both mentally and physically, until he heard a knock at the door of his room. "What?" Zuko snaps violently, whirling around to see the Boreas standing in the doorway.
"Is this a bad time?"awkwardly asks, sliding back into the hall.
"No, I shouldn't have yelled," Zuko says solemnly, realizing that he should not have spoken in such a tone. "Please accept my apology."
"It is a duty to accept the apology of others. I think that given your situation, your reaction is much more justified than others," Boreas says calmly, comforting Zuko with wisdom.
"Normally now I'd go to Uncle for advice, or I'd ask my mother for help. I feel alone, and there's nothing I can do about it!" Zuko begins, his voice rising as his hands fall into his face.
Boreas paces closer, sitting on a chair nearby. "I will give you some advice that someone wise beyond their years told me. 'You mustn't concern yourself with what was; you must act on what is'." Boreas puts his hand on Zuko's shoulder, causing the young Fire Lord to look up at the monk. "You must focus your energies not on despair, but on retrieving what was lost. What that means is up to you, but it is also up to you what actions you will take."
"I know that it's up to me. I don't know what to choose..." Zuko begins. "I want to go get my mother back, and I want to find my uncle. But Uncle told me that my duty to my nation comes first, so that means I need to put an end to the Phoenix Warriors first." Zuko's choice was clear, yet impossible to make. To follow their wisdom would mean abandoning them to what was an almost certain death. Zuko's angst was evident, the two sides within him warring again, leaving Zuko uncertain of what side had pulled him through the War on the side of good.
Breaking Zuko's trance, Boreas spoke up. "You forget the third option. I believe that the two are intertwined. Since the Phoenix Warriors are likely behind what has befallen you, their downfall will give you answers to your questions." Zuko remained shell-shocked, staring at the ground between his knees. "Hmm..." Boreas mumbles while staring at Zuko. "I believe you have a split nature."
"A what?" Zuko says, snapping out of his stare while giving the monk a curious and confused glare.
"Good and evil are conflicting within you. You spent much of your life in the dark, but you have recently emerged into the light."
"Yes, I have. I've fixed my problems, and I've come to terms with my mistakes. I know who I am, I'm good now!" Zuko explains, in awe that his loyalties are in question.
"Please don't be offended, but you don't understand. By denying part of who you are, you have weakened yourself. You must remain true to yourself, all of yourself, if you are to attain full peace. You say that you have two options of what to do. Each side of you is favoring one option. As a whole, you must make a choice that will benefit both sides. As one person, you can do both."
"I still don't know what to do," Zuko repeats, while his face clenches in a dark scowl.
Boreas rises from his seat and puts the chair back where he found it. "I cannot tell you where you need to go from here; this is your journey. It will define you, in the end. But I was originally sent here to inform you that your friends are about to interrogate one of the captured Phoenix Warriors, and you are welcome to come. No matter which path you choose, finding out what he knows will assist you with your mission."
Boreas leaves the room, with Zuko remaining seated. Zuko glances up, and runs out of the room, to see Boreas standing with his back to the wall. "I knew you'd come. It's this way," Boreas says with a smile while motioning to his right. Zuko follows the Airbender down the hall, still confused.
Just a Suggestion
Zhian walks towards the war chamber. He has been told he will be leading the next mission, and that it is to be executed as soon as possible. He enters the chamber, sitting down and waiting for the Admiral to arrive. Glancing around, he notices that several seats are empty, but the tardiness of the officials only serves to irritate him. After several moments, the late officials arrive.
Jiang Rha arrived several moments later, sitting down at the head of the table. "Gentlemen, we have recently had a few setbacks." Jiang's face was serious; there was nothing that could have lightened his mood. "These have been due to weak leaders, a trait I believe no one in this room possesses." Zhian's face cracks a small grin, but he allows Jiang to continue. "Our main obstacles have been coming from the Avatar and his friends. We need to find a way to break them. The Air temple clearly didn't work, so does anyone have any suggestions?"
"I think we need to strike at the Avatar's friends again," an older official next to Jiang Rha announces.
Zhian's patience ran out, and he couldn't keep his sarcasm back any more. "Yes, we all know that. The Admiral just told us that it's our goal to do something along those lines. But we just need to figure out what," Zhian finishes, not having moved, but his face scowling towards the infernal official who didn't know what he was doing.
"During the attack on the Temple, I fought one of his friends," an official from the back of the room begins.
"Yes, go on..." Jiang says, motioning to show that he was interested.
"Well, sir, he mentioned Kyoshi," the official stutters. He was clearly not one for public speaking, especially not to superiors.
"This is perfect," Zhian announces. As the entire room faces Zhian, he elaborates on his plan. "I've done research on the entire Earth Kingdom. Not only is Kyoshi Island small and weak, it doesn't even have any military! It remained neutral in the war, so it will have no idea what hit it."
"What exactly are you suggesting?" Jiang asks, his interest piqued by Zhian's knowledge.
"Not only is the island poorly defended, it is able to break two of the Avatar's group. That one boy you talked about," Zhian says, turning towards the stuttering old official, "And the Avatar himself. Kyoshi Island is named for Avatar Kyoshi, who was the Avatar a few hundred years ago. We can take out two targets at once. I say we burn the whole island to the ground. By the time they find us the whole island will be in ashes."
Web of Plans
Boreas comes across the room he was looking for, stopping and motioning for Zuko to enter. As Zuko walks in he encounters his friends, who were all surrounding a lone Phoenix Warrior. The rebel was bound to a stone chair, his limbs wrapped in metal shackles. "Who's he?" Zuko asks, motioning to the captured insurgent.
"He's the highest ranking member we caught," Aang says. The entire group glances towards the Warrior, who shoots them back a look of superiority.
"What's your name?" Zuko bitterly asks. The Warrior keeps his expression, his eyes signaling the desire to torture the Fire Lord as much as possible. "Answer me!" Zuko says, much louder than before.
". What's it to you?"
"Not much really," Toph scoffs quietly. Sokka snickers but quickly regains his serious composure.
"We want to know what you're up to." Sokka's laughter was long gone by this point, nearing Zuko's level of severity.
"I would've thought you would have figured it out already. Who's running your military anyway?" Cho retorts with a laugh.
"Someone far wiser than you," Katara snaps back.
"I never said I was wise. Apparently those from the Water Tribe aren't very bright," the Warrior replies calmly, giving the entire group a sly smile.
"We've repelled several invasions from your kind before," Sokka says, growing a little angry.
"Maybe true, but you stayed away." Cho looks from Sokka to Aang and Boreas. "Their people were wiped out the first time. I'm pretty sad I have to look at them now actually."
"But we're here. What happened to all of your people? They all ran," Boreas states, catching Cho off guard. Cho has no reply, but his smile vanishes.
"Where did they run to?" Zuko asks harshly.
"I don't know. We were going to make plans after we left the temple. We were going to attack places that meant something to you, but I'm not sure what that would be."
"They are doing what?" Sokka exclaims. "Toph, is he lying?"
Toph moves slightly closer. "They are going to attack what you love," Cho reiterates, making sure his words come out slowly and clearly.
"He's not lying. Guys, we're going to have some problems," Toph says solemnly as she turns back to face her friends.
Planning for the End
After the meeting had ended, Zhian was asked to meet Jiang in a private area, so he walks towards the secluded chamber. Upon his entry, Jiang warmly welcomes him. "There you are!" the admiral exclaims. He gets up from his chair on the far side of a table and pulls Zhian further into the room. "That was a brilliant plan. It will be executed flawlessly."
"Yes, it will. Is there a reason you called me here, sir?" Zhian asks calmly. Jiang nods his head and sits down on the other side of the table.
"The next mission. It is our most important, our most carefully crafted. It must go off without any problems. You seem to come up with excellent ideas, so I would like your input." Jiang slides several scrolls towards Zhian, who quickly reads them.
"This is well done, but I believe some changes are needed. The heavy weapons are on the high ground. They are going to be aimed at our soldiers. We must take them out first. Once we're past the gates though, it's only a matter of how many need to die." Zhian puts down the final scroll.
"Excellent," Jiang replies, picking up the scroll Zhian had just finished. "You are dismissed."
"Yes, sir," Zhian replies, rising to his feet and bowing to Jiang. Zhian leaves the room, and Jiang is left smiling at his scrolls.
Team Avatar walks into the courtyard of the Northern Air Temple. Several Air Nomad children are playing on Appa, sliding down his tail and using Airbending to get back on top. Boreas and Teo appear from behind Appa, having loaded the Team's belongings back onto Appa's saddle. "Kids, time to get off," Teo calls. The kids giggle and all take one more turn down Appa's tail. Boreas motions towards another older monk, clearly meaning for him to take charge of the children. The monk arrives and takes the children to practice some basics, which they are all enthusiastic for.
"Thank you for your patience," Aang says calmly as the two Nomads approach him. "It's my job to protect the entire world. I have to stop any one who means anyone harm."
"We understand," Teo says comfortingly.
"Good luck recovering," Katara says, saddened that she has to leave so soon. "We'll be back as soon as we can."
"You have helped us already. We can rebuild on our own. It is your job to help make sure that these people do not plague the world anymore." Boreas nods his head in respect to the entire Team. "Go with speed," he continues, "and make sure this never has to happen again."
"It won't," Zuko replies, climbing onto Appa. Toph lifts Katara and Sokka up as well, and Aang brings the pillar back into the ground.
Aang walks to Teo and Boreas. "Thank you for everything," he says, respectfully bowing to both his elder and his junior. He jumps onto Appa and grabs hold of the reigns. "Yip Yip!" Appa soars out of the courtyard, with Aang turning and looking back to the Temple. He stares at the temple until Appa soars out of view.
All was quiet at the Northern Air Temple. The Avatar and the Fire Lord had left, leaving the Fire Nation soldiers to awkwardly commingle with the Air Nomads. The soldiers had orders to leave, and bring all captured Phoenix Warriors to a remote prison. There was one, however, who was being taken to a different prison. That Warrior remained bound to a chair in a temple hallway, waiting for his release. Eventually the door to his room opened and several soldiers walked in. "What are you here for?" Cho asks, having grown bored with his time in the temple's room.
"We're here to escort you to the ships. You're being taken to prison," the commander replies.
"Hmph," the Warrior scoffs, turning his head away from the soldiers in the doorway. The soldiers approach the angered Firebender, and begin unlocking his bindings. The soldiers were too slow, as Cho had been planning his escape. As soon as the chains were unlocked, the Firebender had sprung into action. He head butted the nearest guard and pushed him into the commander. Cho then shot a fire ball at the final soldier in the room, effectively incapacitating the entire room in a matter of seconds. He steps over the unconscious bodies of the soldiers, making a special detour to kick the commander before leaving.
Cho opens the door to leave, turns right and begins walking down the hall. From the other side of the hall, a gale force wind knocks him into the wall. Cho slumps to the ground, dazed from the sudden impact. Boreas descends from fifteen feet in the air, touching down softly. "I don't think you're supposed to be leaving." Boreas walks back into the room and returns with the handcuffs that would have been used to bind Cho in the first place.
Boreas then pulls Cho back to right outside the room. The Nomad manages to wake two of the four soldiers from their unconscious state, who decide to keep a better guard on Cho. Boreas then bends and picks up the burnt soldier and sets off for the infirmary without so much as a single word.
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