|"Growing up, my brother and I were complete opposites. I was quiet and studious, he was loud and brash. I followed the rules, he lived to break them."|
|— Misu to Team Avatar and Azula.|
Rafa and Misu were two siblings, originally from the Northern Water Tribe, who journeyed to the Forgetful Valley located in the Fire Nation, in search of the Mother of Faces. The two hoped that the spirit would be able to restore Rafa's face, which had been stolen by Koh following one of his antics in the Northern Water Tribe.
While the two were growing up, Misu was usually quiet and studious, while Rafa was bold and brash. Rafa enjoyed stealing items from the tribe's most powerful people, not because he needed the items, but to prove that he could. However, he was ordered by his sister to return his plunder each time, something with which he always complied. The people from whom he stole were usually so embarrassed that he never got into any real trouble. However, one day this backfired on him, when Koh, the Face Stealer, punished him for his misdemeanor by removing his face and debilitating him. Misu took him to their tribe's most experienced healers, but there was nothing that could be done. Refusing to give up, Misu began researching ways to help her brother. While reading an ancient scroll, she discovered that a powerful spirit with the ability to heal Rafa, the Mother of Faces, visited the Fire Nation from time to time. She learned waterbending in secret, and took her brother and herself to the Forgetful Valley in hopes of meeting the face-giving spirit.
In 102 AG, after hearing Team Avatar scrounging around the forest, Misu initially attacked them using plantbending. When Katara countered the attacks and called the waterbender out, Misu, with Rafa at her side, emerged from the brush. The team later befriended the brother and sister, and Aang entered the Spirit World in hopes of locating the Mother of Faces for them. However, Azula, under the paranoid impression that the elderly Water Tribe siblings were sent by her mother to impede her progress, aimed a bolt of lightning at them.
Zuko successfully stopped Azula's attack and called on Sokka and Katara to attack her despite Misu's warnings to not cause a disturbance. In the meanwhile, Aang was able to summon the Mother of Faces, who would grant them only one request. Zuko gave up his chance to find information on Ursa so Misu could request a new face for Rafa. Before the waterbender could complete her request, Azula interrupted and used the favor to get information on Ursa, much to Misu's chagrin. After seeing that Ursa was Noriko, whom Team Avatar had met in Hira'a the day prior, Azula fled toward the town to confront her, while Misu guided Zuko and Sokka to a shortcut back to the village. She proceeded to waterbend at the Mother of Faces, who chastised her for bending the water of her sacred pool, and dove back underwater.
Misu and Katara waited while Aang tried to pursue the spirit, though he was ejected from the pool by the Mother of Faces. Unhappy at Aang's demands, she ordered the group to leave the forest, sending her animals to attack them. Katara defended Misu against a spirit, saying "waterbenders have to look out for each other". Aang suggested that they leave, but Misu refused, holding out hope to gain a face for Rafa. The Avatar inadvertently blew Rafa's mask away, exposing his blank face, which he recognized as the work of Koh, the Face Stealer, and prompting the Mother of Faces to stop her animals upon hearing this. After Aang explained his knowledge of Koh, the Mother of Faces revealed to the group that he was her son and could feel his work on Rafa's face. She promptly restored his face, causing an overjoyed Misu to embrace him tightly. The two left Forgetful Valley in a boat the next morning.
Misu never received formal training in waterbending, save for healing lessons, due to the Northern Water Tribe's staunch gender-related customs. As such, she taught herself combative waterbending, eventually becoming skilled enough to manipulate the plant life in the Forgetful Valley. Misu preferred to use sharp frozen flowers as projectiles.
Graphic novel trilogies
- Gene Luen Yang's frame of reference for Rafa and Misu was the relationship between Katara and Sokka, "only with more years and more tragedy."
- Rafa's mask is similar to the one that Huu donned as the swamp monster.
- Misu is similar to mizu (水, みず), which means "water" in Japanese.
- Rafa and Misu are the third known brother-sister pairing hailing from the Water Tribes, the others being Sokka and Katara and Desna and Eska.
- Rafa's story is similar to that of Avatar Kuruk's; both were arrogant and brash in their youth and subsequently punished by Koh for their actions, though Rafa had his own face stolen rather than that of someone he loved.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Search Part Two (July 10, 2013), Dark Horse Comics.
- ↑ DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Search Part Three (October 30, 2013), Dark Horse Comics.
- ↑ DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Search Library Edition (February 5, 2014), Dark Horse Comics.
- ↑ Jisho (Web). Jisho.org. Retrieved on December 24, 2017.