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Fire Nation colonial village

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This Fire Nation colonial village[1] was located in the northwestern Earth Kingdom. Despite being a relatively small settlement, the village was a renowned cultural center during the colonial era, hosting the popular Fire Days Festival every year. Along with other newer Fire Nation colonies, it was disbanded after the Hundred Year War.[2]

History

While journeying to the Northern Water Tribe, Team Avatar briefly visited this village to learn more about firebending and Fire Nation culture. They secretly participated in a nighttime festival, disguising themselves with dark clothing and masks. However, their cover was blown when Aang used airbending to protect Katara from an aggressive magic act, which he mistakenly thought was a firebending attack. They were forced to flee and, with the help of Chey, were able to escape pursuit from a large battalion of armed guards. As they flew away on Appa, a few fireworks were set off and a pillar was accidentally lit on fire, which the festival crowd mistook as a decorative touch to mark a special event.

Shortly thereafter, Admiral Zhao came to the village in order to discuss the whereabouts of the Avatar. A guard captain told him the direction in which he had fled and also informed him of the festival's crime rates, which had been significantly below average.[3]

Description

Fire Nation colonial village

A paved pathway runs through the colony's center.

This colonial village was surrounded on all sides by hills and an expansive forest, through which a small river runs. A wooden, rectangular wall separated the forest from the town. The settlement was accessible via a single gate at the front entrance.

A place known for its beautiful cultural events, the village was filled with grandiose and brilliantly extravagant architecture. The settlement's landmark buildings were the three pagodas located at its center. The central pagoda was the largest, while the two identical ones to its sides were smaller. They were all three stories tall and have a yellow exterior with slanted black rooftops. Other smaller but similarly-designed structures surround the pagodas. The buildings were all centered around a wide and spacious square, at which many of the town's paved stone streets culminate. Several facilities and shops were based in and around the square, allowing it to thrive as a bustling commercial and social center.

Many fancy arches, lamps, and wooden houses were found elsewhere around the village. They were made to look aesthetically pleasing and were often heavily decorated. The houses all had multiple windows, yellow sides, and blue rooftops covered with shingles. Each house had a single door that faces in the direction of the main road. Houses were surrounded on all other sides by dark, unpaved alleyways that had little to feature.

Fire Days Festival

Puppet show

Children were treated to a violent puppet show at the festival.

The main cultural event of the village, the Fire Days Festival, attracted firebenders from across all the colonies. A government-sponsored traveling group brought mainland Fire Nation culture to the colonists and usually stayed at the village for a few weeks.[4] One common tradition was to wear masks at the festival, which were freely given out at the community's many street side stalls. Free food was also served, including flaming fire flakes. People could watch or partake in numerous events and activities at the festival, such as puppetry, magic acts, dragon dancing, juggling, and firework light shows. A number of these festivities were violent or exposed poignant issues in society, which was deliberately done to indoctrinate the colony's inhabitants and express Fire Nation ideals.[3]

People of all ages, and even some off-duty soldiers, attended the festival.[4] Many decorations were put up across the village for the merriment, including a large red pillar that was placed at the center of the market square. Guards served duty during the festival to subdue crime and ensure the safety of all civilians.[3]

Notable figures

Trivia

  • The Fire Days Festival is analogous to the Chinese New Year celebrations, as both festivities feature lion dances, firework shows, and puppetry.
  • The fire-breathing puppets are similar to those used at street theaters in the Chinese province of Sichuan.

References

  1. Avatar: The Last Airbender—The Art of the Animated Series, page 68.
  2. Hedrick, Tim, Hamilton, Joshua (writers) & Heck, Colin, Zwyer, Melchior (directors). (June 27, 2014). "Rebirth". The Legend of Korra. Season 2. Episode 2. Nickelodeon.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Hedrick, Tim (writer) & MacMullan, Lauren (director). (October 21, 2005). "The Deserter". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 1. Episode 16. Nickelodeon.
  4. 4.0 4.1 From older Avatar: The Last Airbender official site, originally on Nick.com (link). No longer updated.

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