|By Maritova||Part of thecontinuity.|
|Weapon of choice||
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|Chronological and political information|
The Gaang Jr.
Like, Tseng traveled often during his childhood. Unlike his footloose sister, however, he identifies strongly with his mother's culture, and feels most at home amongst the Water Tribe at the South Pole. He's found himself dragged into crazy situations by Yi Lin and more often than he cares to think about; this latest adventure is just the latest in a long parade of exploits that he's felt compelled to "chaperon." He dearly hopes that it won't provide too many opportunities to use the healing arts taught to him by his mother.
Practical and level-headed, Tseng strives to live up to his parents' expectations; he dutifully practices Waterbending every day, and tries his best to keep his older sister out of trouble. Although he loves both his parents, he has always related better to Katara than to Aang, as evidenced both by his wardrobe choices and his tendency to act as the "mother" of his group of friends. Frequently irritated by Hayoda and Yi Lin's antics (and the fact that they ignore his advice because he's younger), he nevertheless loyally accompanies them on whatever crazy exploits they dream up, claiming that they need someone with common sense to watch over them.
With the possible exception of Yue, Tseng is the only member of the group who ever seems to think about how much trouble they'll be in once they return to their parents. He completely understands Tom-Tom's frustration at their refusal to just call it a day and go home, and Azula's exasperation at the havoc they sow in their rambunctious wake. Since his friends are adamant in their refusal to take the sensible course of action, though, he sticks with them, knowing that they wouldn't last long without him there to mediate their arguments and take care of unglamorous necessities like food, water, and navigation.
Even though he is two years younger than Yi Lin, Tseng thinks of her as a younger sister. Although he makes a great show of exasperation at her flightiness, he cares for her very much, and is always there to cheer her up on those rare occasions when she is feeling less than joyful.
Tseng andhave so far tended to stay in their respective spheres, though their relationship isn't cold or distant. In their early years, Irah was just "Yi Lin's friend." But on the Blue Flame, they are more familiar, and often train together on the ship's deck. Not only do their contrasting elements make for interesting competitions, they are keener than the others to advance their bending skills.
Tseng spends a fair amount of time with, usually whenever their respective siblings run off to find adventure and proof at every port. She may not have the common-sense practicality that he does, but she's a far cry from the flighty and spontaneous Yi Lin and Hayoda, and he finds her hobbies fascinating, her wit enjoyable, and her camaraderie welcome. When Yue finds out something interesting or figures out a new principle of Earthbending or science, Tseng's the first person she runs to, because while any of the others are willing to give her praise, Tseng's the one who can actually understand her ideas.
Tseng and Hayoda have been best friends since they were kids. He admires his cousin's energy and charisma, but often wishes that he would act his age. Fortunately, years of living with his sister have left him well-equipped to serve as the anchor of practicality that keeps Hayoda from sailing off completely at random. Ever the "plan guy" and sidekick to his adventurous friend, Tseng's grounding, pondering, and preparation have helped keep Hayoda out of trouble most of the time. Hayoda sometimes mocks Tseng for his stuffiness or ribs him for being a healer (a somewhat girly thing to do in the Water Tribe), and sometimes their disagreements on how best to lead and protect the group spark into heated conflict. But in the end, they stick together.
Recently, Tseng has found a kindred spirit in Jing, the daughter of Jin and Haru. She shares his practicality, but with a sharp tongue and an independent streak that nicely complement his more phlegmatic demeanor. Although Yi Lin staunchly maintains that it's only a matter of time until the Earth Kingdom girl swoons into Hayoda's arms, anyone with eyes can see that she and Tseng only have eyes for one another. They met during one of the crew's first adventures, where Tseng was forced to enter a beauty contest and compete against Jing as his alter-ego, "Sen". The fact that Jing lost to him was originally somewhat of an embarrassment to her pride, but she quickly got over it, and now, depending on who's writing, rather enjoys trying to get Tseng into women's clothing.
- Tseng was originally to be called Koda; his name was changed because Hayoda was already named after Chief Hakoda (who is both boys' grandfather).
- Even before that, the "Kataang son" was named Zeng.
- Tseng's first "Season 2" costume design featured an ankle-length robe. It was later shortened to a tunic, but not before giving rise to the running joke that "Tseng looks like a girl," which culminated in him entering a beauty contest in drag and defeating Jing to win first place. In the end, Tseng is the fusty, serious, smarty-pants killjoy who inexplicably attracts hot girls. And bafflingly looks better in a dress than Jing does.
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