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|By Duke of Skibbington||Genre||Rating||Reviews||Updates|
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Victory is the 7th chapter in theand the penultimate chapter of book 1.
The Coalition Army under Admiral Nikkolas has failed in the Chameleon Bay Campaign. The Battle of Katara River was successful, but came at great personal cost. Philip and his cabinet are now being forced to drastically rethink the war effort in an attempt to end with a minimum in fatalities. The war is now in its final stages.
"It's nice to have a break from this war for once, isn't it, 'Sami?" Korra says, sitting down at a rather plain table, eating a bowl of rice.
"Nice to have some time to the two of us. How long do you think before Philip lets you back on the field?" Asami carefully eats her rice, cleaning her jacket of any fallen grains.
"I don't know. Philip says I'm not very good on the front lines. Says I would be a better help behind the lines. It's starting to get frustrating."
"I guess he's just worried about you. The world needs the Avatar."
Korra looks up from her bowl. "Surely, I would be of better use on the fields, making a difference."
Knock. Knock. Knock.
Asami stands up. "That'll have to wait." She walks to the door. Opening it, she reveals Philip, clad in full military uniform. As a reflex, she salutes him. "Mr President. To what do I owe the pleasure?"
"'Tis no pleasure, my dear," he salutes back, "I come bearing grave news."
Asami's eyes widen and she feels a bit stiff. "Well, if it's bad, Korra should know as well. Come on in." She sweeps her arm into the room. "May I offer you a drink? Tea? Whisky?"
Philip removes his plumed helmet and follows Asami into the lounge room. Korra takes a seat by Asami. "I'm not interrupting anything, am I?" Philip asks politely.
"No, no, not at all," Korra lies.
Philip looks them in the eyes. "I'm not oblivious, I suspected this pairing. I had gathered Asami would spend her day off with you. I have ruined your day, so you can take tomorrow off."
"You haven't ruined it at all," Asami reassures Philip.
Philip shuffles uneasily in his chair. "Yes, I have. I understand you two were quite close to Mako. Is this true?"
Korra becomes concerned. "Yes, what about him?"
"Captain Mako served with great distinction and valour during the Battle of Katara River," Philip says, withdrawing shiny objects from his pocket. "He served with such bravery... in the heat of battle, the standard bearer was shot dead. Mako bravely took up the flag and continued the charge to the enemy's trenches... he never made it."
Korra and Asami both widen their eyes. "What?" they simultaneously say.
"Captain Mako was shot in the middle of the chest. He died with minimum pain. He died a hero, rest assured." Philip hands them the medals. "He told me earlier, should he not survive, he wanted you two to have his medals and honours."
Korra and Asami are drenched in tears enough to bend an effective whip. On the other hand, Philip remains silent, his upper lip not trembling in the slightest; his lack of emotion is most unsettling.
Philip finally breaks the silence. "No more!"
Korra looks up. "No more what?"
"No more of this nonsense." He stands up. "I know I have ruined your night, your year perhaps. But I'm afraid I must now get down to business. Asami, how did Amon take control of Republic City?"
Great airships crawl through the sky, rows of rubble and plumes of smoke lay in their wake. Air Chief Marshall Sato, clad in her full uniform of white trousers, a grey blazer and goggles, stands beside Korra. "Philip says that after we capture Omashu, the war will be over," Asami says, opening a hatch in the airship.
"I sure hope so." Korra straps herself to the harness.
Asami prepares to slide down the metal cable attached to the ground. "Let's do this for Mako." She leaps onto the cable and slid down, trying to slow her descent. The two of them land and remove their harnesses, being joined by many other men and gliding Hellenic airbenders. "All right everyone, storm the barracks and catch them off guard. The Avatar and I will head uphill and take the palace," Asami orders. And thus, the men salute her, walking silently to the barracks.
Korra and Asami rush uphill, finally reaching a high gate. "Right, Philip said Brutus should be here. If we can ambush him, the Zaofu front will collapse overnight," Asami says.
"You will be safe, won't you, Asami?" Korra places her hand on Asami's cheek.
"Don't worry, I'll be fine," Asami reassures Korra, pulling her in for a kiss. "Love you."
"Love you, too," Korra says, breaking open the gate. The two swarm into the compound, attempting to find Brutus. The two cautiously enter a narrow corridor, seeing a large man at the end. The man is bare-shirted with hideous tattoos covering every inch of his chest. Asami levels her rifle over her shoulder and Korra stands in a fighting stance, forming a ball of fire in her fist. Hearing a large collection of footsteps, they turn around. A group of five Empire Guards cut them off, preventing a retreat and encircling them.
"You go after Brutus," Asami orders, leaving her rifle levelled. "I'll hold off these boys."
Asami pulls her trigger, releasing a small bolt of purple energy. A guard falls upon being struck in the chest. At the same time, Korra unleashes a startling volley of fire and rage at Brutus. Brutus steps back, diffusing every blast and throwing a large chunk of earth. Korra punches the rock, shattering it into dust. Korra continues to spray Brutus like a flamethrower, attempting to incinerate him. She throws him through the wall with airbending and chases him through a maze of corridors.
The soldiers raise their guns shoulder height and shoot at Asami. She runs off, hiding behind a wall. A man steps in front of her and falls over, a large burn having formed through his chest. She thrusts her bayoneted rifle at one of her attackers, impaling him and pushing him to the ground. She tries to remove the rifle, but doesn't have the time. Drawing her sabre, she once more rushes down the corridor.
Korra hurls a large rock at Brutus, which he breaks apart with his head. He growls and retaliates with a jet of fire. Korra's eyes widen. "Not him as well," she thinks to herself. She parries the blast and shoots a stream of air, which fails to hit him. He spins around and hits her with a large rock, sending her into the wall.
Philip infiltrates the Ba Sing Se palace, aided only by Nikkolas. "Okay, mate, good luck." Philip raises his hand straight and over his nose, as if dividing his face. Nikkolas returns the gesture. The two keep silent, having heard footsteps creep down the hallway. Click. The lights turn on, a startled Ephialtes standing in the hallway. Philip swirls his arms and pushes out, knocking Ephialtes over with a powerful blast of air. He and Nikkolas commence a relentless bombardment of Ephialtes, giving him little time to retaliate.
Asami pulls a brown weapon with an iron barrel out of her pocket. She pulls the hammer, complete with a flint stone locked in place, back and readies her finger on the trigger. A man comes within range and she pulls the trigger, releasing a lead ball into his skull. She winces when blood spurts out from his temple. The last guard draws his sabre and strikes at Asami. The steel blades clang together, up, down, across and forward, as the two fighters try to take the upper hand.
Philip and Nikkolas continue their assault, forcing Ephialtes to defend. A large boulder strikes Nikkolas in the flank, knocking him over. Philip swings to the side and releases a cone of air at the assailant, knocking him backward. Ephialtes seizes the opportunity and strikes Philip with a large rock. Men swarm around Philip, battering him with rocks and fire. Philip tries to block them, but is unable, being struck by every blow. Seeing an opening, he blasts a man with fire and knocks him over. Ephialtes strikes Philip in the head with an air fist.
Asami steps forward, one arm behind her back, using the other to lock swords with her foe. She steps forward twice and locks swords, moving their swords in a clockwise manner, she withdraws and slices his thumb. He releases a scream of shock. Taking full advantage, she jumps in and stabs him in the chest. She grits her teeth as she plunges it deeper, blood spraying onto her purple blazer.
"It's over!" Ephialtes yells, bombarding Philip with more and more rocks and flames. Philip falls to his knees, on the verge of collapse. He shuts his eyes.
"No, it's not over!" he shouts, eyes glowing a brilliant red. He rises to his feet and swipes his arm from one side of his chest to the other. The men brace themselves from the anticipated air wave. But it never comes. Rather, a brilliant crescent of red energy knocks every man over, including Ephialtes. Philip pursues Ephialtes, eyes still glowing. He punches numerous times, releasing streams of the same red energy. Ephialtes turns and throws a rock, which Philip destroys with ease.
Brutus stands over Korra, as she regains consciousness. "You were no match for me, Avatar! You shall now be -" Brutus is cut short when his head falls off. Nothing serious, he's just dead. Asami extends her hand and hoists Korra to her feet. Asami wraps her arm around Korra's shoulder and limps to a window, one arm covered in blood and clutching her sword. The two look outside in both horror and relief, seeing the big blue flag and white cross of Hellas swaying in the crisp, midnight breeze.
Nikkolas climbs to his feet, the world blurring around him. He cannot see Philip, just several confused men waking at the same time. Ephialtes is not among them. He hears a loud scream and sees a blinding red flash in a distant room. He runs, chasing the path of destruction until he enters a room. He sees Philip, Ephialtes lying limp by his feet. "It is over," Philip says. "The war is over."
Ephialtes, face flat on the floor and body splayed, winks to the ground.
- Battle of Katara River
- Battle of Omashu
- Battle of Ba Sing Se
For the collective works of the author, go here.