|By Agent Slash||Genre||Rating||Reviews||Updates|
|More from Agent Slash||Action/Adventure, Drama||PG-PG13||Positive||N/A|
|Where My Wife Sleeps|
Aang stood in the middle of his sanctuary, firing beams of light into the air, demonstrating his newfound abilities. "You guys want to see more?" he asked.
Appa responded with a typical growl and Momo replied with a chirp.
"Alright, then," said Aang. He demonstrated more of his lightbending skills for the animals, keeping them entertained. He solidified a peach in midair, prompting Momo to fly towards it. Just before the lemur reached it, the light peach disappeared. Aang laughed at the lemur's amusing confusion. "Sorry, Momo," he said. Aang then airbent several peaches down from the trees which landed right in front of Momo.
As the lemur gobbled up his peaches, Sokka came walking up to his friend. "Hi, Aang," he said, picking a peach up off the floor and biting it.
"Hey, Sokka," Aang replied. "What's up?"
"Toph sent me to tell you something," Sokka said.
"She, um..." the warrior started.
"She what?" Aang asked.
"Wow, these peaches are really good," said Sokka.
"Sokka?" Aang asked, trying to grab his friend's attention.
"Oh, yeah," Sokka remembered, snapping back into focus. "Toph thought you might like to know that they're releasing Mayor Qian from the hospital today."
Aang suddenly felt uncomfortably guilty at the mention of his rival's name. "Can he walk?"
"I don't know. I'm just passing along the message," Sokka said. "Oh, and I did have one other thing to tell you," Sokka said.
"What?" Aang queried.
"Oh, nothing major," Sokka said. "It's just that I asked Suki to marry me!"
Aang's eyes widened and his jaw dropped. "So are you-"
"That's right, Aang, my friend, we are engaged!" Sokka declared, joyously.
Having heard the noise, Katara and Yukio walked over. "What's all this about?" asked Katara.
"Me and Suki are engaged!" Sokka declared again.
Katara and Yukio's eyes lit up and Katara embraced her brother in a hug. "Oh, my gosh! That's great!" Katara said. "I'm so happy for you two!"
"Me, too," said Aang. "Way to go, buddy!"
"Congratulations, my friend," said Yukio.
"Thanks, guys," Sokka said.
"Where's Suki?" Katara asked.
"She's spreading the news to everyone else," Sokka replied.
"Come on, let's go celebrate!" said Katara.
"Wow, I completely forgot whatever it was we were talking about before," Aang said.
Zhu stood at the entrance to City Hall, awaiting his boss to reach the top of the stairs. Mayor Qian wheeled himself up to the top and laid eyes upon his assistant. "So, Zhu, it looks like you've had things in Republic City quite under control in absence," he said.
"I've done my best, sir," Zhu replied.
"Well, I'm back now, so you don't have to worry about running this city anymore," Qian announced. He wheeled himself inside with Zhu following behind him. "I trust you contacted the assassins I requested?"
"Yes, sir, I had one of them as prosecutor in the Avatar's trial, but we lost and she was exposed," said Zhu. "They said never to contact them again until you were released from the hospital."
"So, are they here now?" Qian inquired.
"Yes, sir," said Zhu. "They are waiting in your office."
"Excellent." Zhu opened the doors and Qian wheeled himself in. He looked upon the thirteen women who stood before him in his office and noticed they were all wearing red and black. "Is there anyone in the Fire Nation who doesn't wear red?" he asked.
"If there is, I have yet to meet them," said the leader, moving over to the politician.
"You must be Mai," said Qian.
"That's right," said Mai. "And I can only guess that you're Qian."
"Correct, my dear. So, shall we get down to business?"
"Yes, let's," Mai agreed. Qian wheeled himself over to his desk and Mai sat opposite him. "The rest of you leave us," said Mai. The other Daughters of Ozai obeyed and left the room.
"You, too, Zhu," Qian ordered.
Zhu bowed and left, closing the doors.
"As you are no doubt aware, you and your little organization have made quite a name for yourselves," Qian started. "First and foremost, you are idealists who are dedicated to overthrowing that spoiled, scarred Fire Lord, yet whenever someone requests it, you can make people disappear in the blink of an eye."
"You have earned yourself a reputation, too, you know," Mai chimed in. "People all over the world have taken notice of your hatred for Aang. You've pissed a lot of people off with all of that talk of him being a menace."
"No matter what the people think, he is a menace," Qian stated, sternly. "It took you a while to figure that out, didn't it, my dear? Or have you forgotten the fact that you used to traipse around with him and his team?"
"I haven't forgotten anything," Mai shot back in a low tone that let Qian know she was serious.
"Then you know he is a threat to all of the nations?"
"I know that and you know that, but it doesn't matter what we know as long as he's still out there."
"That is why I plan to spend as much of my time as possible plotting his demise, although, with your help, I may not have to plot for too long."
"What do you want me to do?" asked Mai.
"I want you and your warriors to infiltrate his sanctuary and take him and everyone else with him out."
"Mayor Qian, it would be my pleasure," Mai said.
"Now be careful," said Qian. "I can't have anything connecting this back to me. The election is in a month and I don't want anyone suspecting that I had anything to do with this."
"Consider yourself squeaky clean," said Mai.
Then there was a knock at the door.
"Zhu, I thought I told you to wait outside," Qian said. The door opened and Mai ducked down, hiding herself from the person entering the room. He was a man in a brown trench coat with brown hair and a brown fedora. "Oh, Detective Pong," Qian said. "I wasn't expecting you."
"Hey, Mr. Mayor," Pong said. "Glad to see you're feeling better."
"Yes, it's good to see you again," Qian replied.
"Sorry for busting in on you like that," Pong said. "I just wanted to welcome you back."
"Well, thank you very much," Qian said.
Pong exited the office, closing the doors behind him.
"So, I suppose there is nothing left to be said," Mai said from underneath the desk.
"No, I suppose not."
On Air Temple Island, things were as festive as they had ever been. Team Avatar sat in the main room of the temple, laughing and having a good time. "Remember the time we went to Whaletail Island and Suki had to untie him from the anchor?" Ai recalled. Everyone has a good laugh at this as they all recalled hilarious situations Sokka and Suki had gotten in together.
"Or the time we went to Kangaroo Island and she had to save him from all of those hopping kangaroos?" Rong brought up.
"Don't forget the time he built that hideous sand sculpture of her face," Toph said.
"In all seriousness, guys, congratulations on your engagement," said Aang, raising his cup of tea. "Here's to Sokka and Suki: our dear friends whom we've all known and loved for a long time."
"Here, here!" Everyone chanted, sipping their tea.
"Thanks so much, guys," Suki thanked everyone. "This really means a lot."
"Yeah, it sure does," Sokka agreed.
"I'll be right back, guys," said Bo. "I've got to get some fresh air."
"Alright, don't take too long, Bo," said Katara.
"I won't," Bo said as he left the temple. He walked around outside, breathing in the cool night air, until he strayed further from the temple than he had intended. Realizing this, he started to walk back the way he came. He then heard something rustling in the bushes and turned to see what it was, but could see nothing. "Hello?" he asked. He paused for a moment until he decided it was nothing and kept walking. Suddenly, a woman leaped out of the bush and swung a dagger right at his face, missing him by mere inches. Bo widened his eyes and dashed for the temple.
Back inside the temple, Yukio wondered, "I wonder what is taking Bo so long."
"He probably forgot what Katara told him," said Ling.
"I'm sure he'll be back soon enough," Katara said.
The team of heroes then heard a faint noise in the distance. It was a noise that seemed to be getting closer. "Help! help!" It sounded like.
"Is that Bo crying for help?" asked Toph.
As the sound grew nearer, their suspicion was confirmed. "Guys, help! Lock the doors!"
Everyone jumped up out of their seats, alarmed and confused. "What's happening?" asked Ai.
"Someone has invaded the island," said Aang, gravely.
"Make sure Bo gets in before you lock the door," said Katara. "Make sure all of the windows are shut! Find your own ways off of the island!"
Everybody did as instructed and shut as many windows as they could, dashing to other parts of the temple to close all entrances. While everyone else was away, Aang stood at the door Bo was running towards, seeing that he was being pursued by someone in a dark cloak. Bo was getting nearer and nearer, closing in on the door, racing as fast as he could, then – bam! He made it inside and Aang slammed the door shut and sealed it off. "Are you okay?" he asked.
"Yeah, that was too close for comfort," Bo replied.
"Alright, everybody is taking their own way off of the island," Aang explained. "We have to make it out of the temple and off of the island without anyone seeing us and hope that everyone else does the same."
"Alright," said Bo. "Let's hope we make it."
"We will," Aang assured him.
The two friends sneaked through the house, being careful not to make a sound. The slightest creak could alert their assailants, wherever or whoever they were. It was nearly pitch black. All of the candles had been burned out, leaving most of the heroes close to sightless. Aang, however, built this sanctuary and knew it like the back of his hand, so Bo just followed wherever he went. Just as it seemed like all would remain silent, a scream was heard in the distance. It was a voice belonging to a female, but neither Aang nor Bo could tell who it was. Once the screaming stopped, they both knew someone had just been killed. They prayed to the spirits it wasn't one of their friends.
Katara and Rong made their way through the temple, having nearly reached the side exit that was nearest to Appa's stable. "Alright, once we get outside, you have to hop on Appa and we can get you out of here."
"Okay," said Katara.
"And, Katara," Rong continued.
"Please make it out alright. Aang would never forgive me, not to mention I'd never forgive myself, if something happened to you or the baby."
"Don't worry," said Katara. "I'll be fine."
The two women made it out and sneaked around to Appa's stable.
"Alright, now we-"
Whoosh! The knife whizzed past Katara and Rong, narrowly missing their heads. Two women stood armed and aggressive, hurling daggers and Sais at the two heroes. Rong retaliated with a fire slash, burning the weapons. "Get back, Katara!" Rong said. "I'll handle this!"
"I can fight, too," Katara insisted.
"Katara, please, I don't have time to argue! Just listen to me!" Rong urged, taking out two more daggers.
Katara hesitated, then nodded and ran over to Appa, struggling to climb onto his back.
"Need a hand?" asked Toph. She earthbent the pregnant waterbender on top of the sky bison and ran over to help Rong. As the assassins hurled two more daggers at her, she metalbent them, flinging them away in midair. She then earthbent the two women into the trees and away from the temple.
"Thanks, Toph," Rong said.
"No problem," Toph said. "Now let's get out of here."
As they made their way to the back of the temple, Aang and Bo came upon an exit. "Alright," Aang whispered. "I can get us out of here on my glider, so hold on tight and stay quiet."
Bo nodded and the two slowly exited the temple. They tiptoed their way out back and walked to the edge of the island. Bo looked behind him briefly, then did a double take and shouted, "Look out, Aang!"
Aang turned around and raised an earth wall in defense of the daggers that sped towards him.
"Don't even try it, Aang!" shouted one of the assailants. "You're not getting away that easily!"
Aang was saddened to see the woman that stood before him. Mai approached the Avatar and slipped another dagger his way.
Aang blocked it again with an earth wall and asked, "Why are you attacking me in my home?!"
"It just seemed easier that way," Mai retorted, mockingly.
"Hold on!" Aang said. He twirled open his glider and Bo grabbed on as they took off. The assassins shot more blades at them as they flew away, but missed, allowing the two heroes to fly safely to the city.
Ling was holding his own against two of the intruders. Yukio stood behind him, powerless due to the absence of light. The earthbender sidestepped two daggers and fired back with two boulders, which the assailants dodged. Ling then created an earth slide, sending the two women slipping into Yue Bay.
"That was impressive," said Yukio.
"Thanks," said Ling. "Now let's get out of here."
The two of them went down to the shore and mounted Feng, setting off into the city.
Down at the docks, Aang, Katara, Toph, Bo, and Rong waited for others to show up. "When we were sneaking through the temple, we heard someone scream," said Aang. "I hope it wasn't one of ours."
"I guess we'll find out if someone doesn't show up," said Toph.
Then they saw Feng winding up the shore with Ling and Yukio atop his back. The three of them reached the shore and went up to the docks. The two benders hopped off of Feng's back.
"Oh, good, you made it," Yukio said.
"Do you know who it was that screamed?" asked Aang.
"We have no idea," Ling replied. "Do you think it was one of ours?"
"I hope not," said Aang.
Finally, they saw Sokka, Suki, and Momo riding a boat to the shore and relief washed over them all. The three of them walked up onto the docks and joined their teammates.
"I guess it doesn't matter now," said Aang. "Now I know we're all safe."
"Did you guys kill one of them?" asked Rong.
"Yeah," said Suki. "I killed one of them with my katana."
"Alright, so now that we all know we're safe, what do we do next?" asked Bo.
"We can go back to my place," said Sokka. "There should be enough room for everybody to spend the night."
"Alright, that sounds good," said Ai.
"Who would do this?" asked Toph. "Who would attack us in the middle of the night?"
"It was the Daughters of Ozai," said Aang. "We should wait until tomorrow for them to clear out and if they're still there then we'll face them in daylight, but for now, let's get some sleep."
No one objected and everyone started towards Sokka's house.
- The title of this chapter is a reference to a line spoken by Al Pacino in The Godfather, Part II.
For the collective works of the author, go here.