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Avatar: Centennial Embers
Book 1: Earth
Avatar Kuruk 1
Unrest is the first chapter of Avatar: Centennial Embers.
While Team Avatar was taking Zuko to the Outer Wall of Ba Sing Se, they found a fight had broken out. After going to investigate, they found that civil unrest was growing in the city.
The Jasmine Dragon
Sokka signed his painting with a scowl on his face. "Everybody's a critic!" he grumbled, just as Aang and Katara walked back inside the tea shop. "I'd like to see any of you do a better job!"
"Calm down Sokka," Sukki said, as the laughter died down. "We were only kidding. It's a great painting." She paused for a moment, and noticed that Zuko was starring vacantly into space. "What's wrong with you?" she asked.
Zuko quickly regained his focus and turned toward her. "Nothing," he said. "I was just thinking. It's probably time for Mai and me to get back to the Fire Nation. It's been three weeks, and I have a feeling it's not good to spend too much time away right after a war. I've already sent word to the Fire Nation. An airship is supposed to arrive at the Outer Wall today to take us back."
"Are you sure you have to go already?" Aang asked, sounding disappointed. "I still need to work on my Firebending. I think it still needs some work."
"You're right about that," Sokka said with a laugh. "Remember last week when you set Zuko's hair on fire?"
"Oh yeah," Toph said. "And what about when you burned half of Iroh's tea leaf garden? And then just yesterday didn't you--"
"Alright, I get it!" Aang shouted. He turned back to Zuko. "So what should I do?"
"You all can stay here in Ba Sing Se for a while and help get things back to normal. Then when you're ready, you can come to the Fire Nation and we can finish your training there."
"Okay," Aang responded, "but at least let us take you to the Outer Wall. We can all ride on Appa."
"That sounds great," Zuko said sincerely. "Thank you."
The Lower Ring
The team was flying on Appa over the Lower Ring, when they heard sounds of a fight coming from the street below.
"What was that?" Sokka asked, as he went to look over the side of Appa's saddle to get a better view.
"I don't know," Aang replied, "but it probably is nothing." As soon as he finished speaking, a huge boulder flew into the air, just missing them, frightening everyone. "Then again....", Aang said, out of breath from the scare. He pulled on Appa's reins, bringing him down to land.
They landed in a market place, where two earthbenders were fighting. One was wearing a neat, clean outfit, not suiting the peasants of this part of town. The other was wearing ragged clothes, and looked like all the other peasants, but his bending was great. They hurled rocks at each other in quick succession, not waiting to see if their attacks hit before immediately launching another.
Upon seeing this, Aang and Katara slid down Appa's side and took fighting stances, quickly followed by Sokka, who instinctively pulled out his boomerang. The rest of the group then came down as well. But before they had a chance to intervene, another peasant stepped up and got in the middle of things. With one quick motion, he grabbed the rich-looking man by his arm, and swung him into his opponent, knocking them both to the ground. He quickly ran over to them, pulled out Dao swords, similar to Zuko's, and pointed one at each man's head to keep them down. This whole time, he was intently focused, but calm as well.
"What's the problem here?" he asked in a calm, yet slightly stern tone.
"This, this peasant attacked me for no reason at all!" the wealthy man shouted in rage.
"No I didn't!" the peasant fighter shouted back. "I attacked him because he stole food from my stand! I barely make a living as it is, and I don't need to put up with theft!"
The third man put his swords away, allowing the others two get up. Then he spoke. "Gentlemen - and I use the term loosely - I'll admit, I'm not opposed to violence, and I can even condone it in some circumstances. But I think we all have better ways to spend our energy then like this" He turned to the rich man. "Give him back what you took. You seem to have enough money to pay for your food fairly, and I'm tired of seeing people put up with abuse from stuck-up snobs like you."
The man did as he was told, and the three went their separate ways. This whole time, Team Avatar stood back, observing.
"What was that about?" Aang asked, scratching his head.
"Yeah, and who was that guy?" Katara added. "He was so calm, but he worked everything out perfectly. That was really impressive."
"That's Chong Lee," said a voice from behind them, causing everyone to jump. "His village was burned down about a month before the War ended, and he just moved here about two weeks ago. But the citizens have really taken a liking to him, or at least us here in the Lower Ring have."
"Oh. Well, he does seem to really be able to handle situations," Katara commented, her voice still a little weak from being startled.
"Yeah, he's sort of already become a kind of role model around here. To tell you the truth, a lot of us aren't really too happy, even with the War over and the Dai Li gone."
Aang had a confused look on his face at that. "Shouldn't you be happy?" he asked. "I worked hard to win that War, and I didn't do it just for fun."
"Well, we were all poor before, and we're poor now. There's not much of a difference. But Chong Lee's sort of acted as a leader for us, encouraging to join together, and put our energy to a better use, instead of just fighting each other."
"But you can't just fight everyone to make your life better," Aang responded.
"His idea isn't for us to fight everyone. He said, we should wait until the right chance, and then fight just those who we need to."
"Well, it sounds like this Chong Lee thinks like a real earthbender," Toph said, sounding impressed.
"Maybe so," Aang began, "But I still don't think-" He was cut off by an messenger riding up quickly on an Ostrich Horse.
"Avatar Aang," he said very formally, "The Council of Five would like to see you and your friends immediately."
"What's wrong," Aang asked, puzzled.
"They didn't say, but they did tell me it was very important. Please hurry." The man then rode off as quickly as he arrived.
"I wonder what they want," Katara said.
"Whatever it is, it can't be good," Aang said back, as he used airbending to jump up onto Appa's saddle.
"Can't we get any break?" Sokka asked, annoyed, as he and the others joined Aang.
- This chapter acts to help set up the story for Centennial Embers.
- This chapter begins right where Avatar: The Last Airbender ended, with everyone laughing about Sokka's painting.
For the collective works of the author, go here.
|Avatar: Centennial Embers Chapters|
|Book 1: Earth|
|Unrest - Escalating Danger - An Unsettling Detour - A Lingering Flame - Young Gangs and Old Games - Embers Unearthed - Reunion|