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Transcript:The Stakeout

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Real-world
Iroh and Earth Kingdom children Admit mistakes when they occur and seek to restore honor.

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Shiro Shinobi [Narrating a newsreel.] Zaheer infiltrated Zaofu and attempted to kidnap the Avatar. After a harrowing battle, she was saved and discovered a shocking truth: Aiwei, Su's trusted adviser, has been working with Zaheer. This truth seer turned traitor managed to escape but Su tasks Team Avatar of tracking him down. Now the hunted becomes the hunter as Korra searches for answers.
The scene opens to a few rocks dotting the desert landscape and we can see some spirits casually mingling about. In the background, Team Avatar has arrived in a local Earth Kingdom desert village with hopes to track down Aiwei. Naga is seen stopping to sniff the ground. Cut to a close-up of the group as Asami pulls in the jeep behind Korra.
Korra Aiwei has definitely been through here. [To Naga.] Nice tracking, girl.
Mako Let's ask around. Maybe someone's seen him.
Cut to the inside of a tavern as Mako pushes the curtain aside at the entrance. The group enters and everyone in the tavern glances at the group. Bolin notices something on the wall of the tavern and the camera pans to reveal a wanted poster of him on the wall.
Bolin [Spots a poster with his face on it.] Ohh look, they have a mover poster of me. [Mako looks at the poster with mild surprise.] Must be big Nuktuk fans, [Rubs hands together.] yeah, [He starts to walk forward.] I should go out and say hello ...
Mako [Mako grabs Bolin by his sleeve.] No. Those are wanted posters, [Scene pulls back to reveal wanted posters for all four teens on the wall. Mako reads Korra's poster.] and there's one for each of us. "Wanted by Her Majesty, the Earth Queen, for crimes against the Kingdom." [Cut to Mako as he raises an eyebrow while Korra is fuming behind him. Glances back at Korra, rolling his eyes.]  I'm guessing this is because we took her airbenders.
Korra [Frustrated.] They weren't hers to keep!  I swear, if I see her pinchy [Asami glances back into the tavern.] little queen face again, I am going to ...
Asami [Interrupts with alarm.] Uhh, guys ... [Camera pans across the various patrons of the bar and one man pulls out his sword while another shows off his spear.] We should get out of here.
The group walks out and Korra does a gesture to all the men in the tavern before she departs. The scene shifts to an aerial view of the Beifong Estate in the morning with the remnants of the battle lingering in the shot. View switches to Suyin talking to two guards on the bridge where Lin walks toward and confronts her sister.
Lin Where's everyone? I've been waiting to leave for half an hour.
Suyin And good morning to you, Lin. Now don't get mad, Korra's fine. I'm just waiting to hear if she'd tracked down Aiwei yet.
Lin [Alarmed. Furrows her brows.] What! You let Korra go?! I thought we were on the same page about this, and then you go and stab me in the back?
Suyin Oh, don't be so overdramatic. You can't control the Avatar's every move.
Lin [Walks off angrily.] I can try.
The scene shifts to Naga running with Korra on her back and the rest of the group following a windy road. Camera pans out to an aerial view of Team Avatar making their way down a path on the road. The jeep follows closely and Naga runs up a small slope. View switches to Naga sniffing the ground for any scent near a bunch of rocks.
Korra Naga found something. [Korra gets off her mount and Naga sits. The Avatar earthbends a giant boulder to the side to find Aiwei's jeep hidden behind a small clearing. Naga bumps her head on and nudges Korra and awaits a reward.] Oh ... Sorry, I forgot to bring treats [Naga whines and bends down as Korra affectionately rubs the polar bear dog's face.] but, good girl.
Naga responds by whining once more and turn to walk away. Her tail whips and slaps Korra in the face, causing her to groan. Asami and the brothers walk up to the vehicle in the background. Korra hunches her shoulder's from Naga's cold shoulder attitude.
Asami [Walking toward the jeep.] This must be Aiwei's jeep. He can't be far.
Mako [Looking at the Misty Palms Oasis and walking to the edge of the slope.] Bolin and I [Cut to a view of a town nearby in the background.] will investigate the Misty Palms Oasis, and see if he's hold up there.
Bolin Yes! [Folds arms.] I love it when you talk like a cop.
Korra I'm coming too.
Mako No. You and Asami wait here in case he comes back. Besides, we don't want to call too much attention to ourselves.
Korra [Reluctantly.] All right.
Bolin [Excitedly.] Ooh, Mako, Mako, Mako! We should wear disguises and pretend we're going undercover! That way, [Places a hand over his mouth and the other on his forehead.] no one will recognize us. Haha, police work is so exciting!
Scene changes to a hand unzipping a bag of supplies. Camera pans out to a back view of Bolin as he pulls out a bright yellow raincoat and drapes it over his head and body. Cut to his eyes as bright green goggles are worn. Camera pans out to the brothers dressed in identical outfits. Cut to Korra and Asami looking askance and unconvinced at them, as if questioning the effectiveness of their disguises.
Bolin [Off-screen.] All right, now we need our undercover identities! [Camera focuses on Bolin now as he regales a sad story.] I'm an ex-United Forces operative named Ting-Ting. War was the only woman I ever loved, until Ivy came along and showed me what real love is. Tragically, she was taken from me by my archenemy Dr. Razor and -
Mako [Interrupts.] Enough! [Starts walking.] Let's just find Aiwei.
Bolin But I haven't even told your backstory.
Mako [Heads to the city.] I'm a cop. I don't have a backstory.
Bolin [Catches up to his brother.] Uh! You're good at this. [Chasing Mako.]
The scene fades to the expanded Misty Palms Oasis' entrance, with Mako and Bolin stepping forward. View changes to the spirits lurking and perched on the rooftop and telephone lines of the town, looking down at the two yellow-coated guys. Cut to a close-up of the brothers as they make their way down the street. View focuses on the center of the city, where there is an ice spring with three spirits lounging on it. Mako and Bolin pause and stop near the ice. They watch a guy sweeping and pushing three kiwi bird-like spirits outside the door with a broom.
Tavern owner Shoo! Human customers only.
The spirits scurry off. The brothers walk up to the tavern owner sweeping his stoop.
Mako Let's see if this guy knows anything. [Heads to the tavern.] Excuse me, sir? We're looking for a man about sixty, balding, wearing glasses in a long green robe.
Bolin And he's got this weird piercing that goes from his nose [Points to his nose.] to his [Points to his ear.] ear. Freaks me out.
Tavern owner Yeah, sure. Sounds like a guy who came in last night. I told him I had the best drinks in the Earth Kingdom and he called me a liar.
Mako [Excitedly. Smiles hopefully.] That's him! Any idea where he is now?
Tavern owner [Sadly.] Nah, afraid not. But he was right. [His posture looks defeated.] My drinks are terrible. [Walks inside dejectedly into his bar while the brothers look on in shock.]
Cut to Korra sitting on a boulder near the city. View changes to a frontal shot of Korra with Asami in the background glancing at her friend as she observing Aiwei's jeep.
Asami Are you okay?
Korra [Sighs.] I'm just frustrated. What does Zaheer want with me? What's his plan?
Asami slides up the driver's seat as she reaches for something in the glove compartment. Cut to a close-up of her as she pulls out a note.
Asami I don't know. But I think I found a clue. [Picks up the paper and lends it to Korra.]
Korra [Reads the letter.] Xai Bau's Grove, sundown. This must be where and when Aiwei's going to meet Zaheer!
Asami [Looks at Earth Kingdom map.] All right. Xai Bau's Grove, where are you? [Suddenly a blue-colored spirit stands on the map, screeching.] Go away! I'm trying to find something.
Bolin [Cuts to the city, where Bolin is waiting near the door of an establishment. A purplish spirit rises from a nearby urn.] Well, aren't you a cute little spir- [The spirit bites Bolin's finger.] Ow! Hey! [A couple recognizes Bolin.]
Mako [Heads from the door.] No luck here.
Bolin [Stage-whisper.] I think there might be a couple bounty hunters over there who recognize me!
Mako We've been made.  Let's lose 'em!
The boys flee down a street, the couple close on their heels. They finally duck down an alley, hiding behind some boxes and barely escaping the notice of the female pursuer. The couple moves on as the brothers peek out of hiding.
Mako Okay, I think we're clear.  We should head back to Korra before someone else recognizes us.
Aiwei strolls nonchalantly past the other end of the alley. Bolin spots him and yanks Mako back out of view.
Bolin We could, or ... we could follow Aiwei instead. [Points.] Look!
Aiwei strolls down an alley, eating food from a box. Mako and Bolin appear from behind, and spy on him.
Mako

All right. [Puts on glasses and starts walking.] Stay cool and follow my lead.

Bolin [Starts to follow.] Ting-Ting always finds his man.
Mako and Bolin follow Aiwei down a street and past a pink building. They watch as Aiwei enters a room and closes the door.
Mako Keep an eye on him. I'll go get Korra. 
Scene shifts back to Korra and Asami observing the map. Mako pulls off his disguise and walks to them.
Mako We found Aiwei hiding in an inn.
Korra That's great!
Asami We found something too. [Hands Mako the letter.] It looks like he's gonna meet Zaheer at sundown at a place called Xai Bau's Grove. But I can't find it anywhere on the map.

Korra

Let's go bust down Aiwei's door and finally get some answers.
Mako No. Once Aiwei knows we're onto him, we lose our advantage. I say we stake out his room and when he leaves for this meeting, we follow him. 
Korra [Cut to Korra who looks serious.] And he'll lead us straight to Zaheer.
The scene shifts to the Misty Palms Inn, as Team Avatar try to get a room.
Mako [To the innkeeper.] Good afternoon. We'd like a room on the ground floor, across from 102, please.
Innkeeper Forget it! Last time a bunch of teenagers came in here, they trashed the whole room. [Mako frowns and the stalkers from earlier stop at the inn's entrance.]
Macao [At the entrance.] We found you! [The team turns around in alarm and get into fighting poses. Mako lights up a ball of fire above his palm and Korra bends fire daggers in both hands. Team Avatar gets ready to fight.]
Innkeeper Hey, no bending in here! Take it outside!
Macao [Places both hands out to appease the team.] Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. We're not here to fight you. [A goofy smile appears on the couple's faces.] We're here to meet Nuktuk!
Lily [Walks up to Bolin and pulls out a poster for him to sign.] We're your biggest fans. Can you make it out to Lily and Macao?
Bolin Uh, I'd be happy to. Always love meeting my fans. [Signs the poster.]
Lily [Pulls out a doll that looks like Bolin. Holds it up to him and squeaks it.] I made this Nuktuk doll for you.
Bolin [Starts to smile.] Uh, it's ... cute. [Bolin grins as Lily squeaks the doll in a sound of agreement.]
Innkeeper Why didn't you tell me your friend was a mover star? I'd be happy to rent you any room in the inn.
Mako We'll just take the one across from 102.
Innkeeper But that room is too small for the four of you!
Mako Trust me, it'll be perfect.
Scene shifts to Team Avatar, squished in their new room.
Bolin I'd just like to say, for the record, this room is definitely not perfect. [Naga's tail hits him in the face.] Naga! [Mako and Korra look out the window, and see Aiwei peeking out of his across for them.]
Korra There he is.
Bolin I thought stakeouts were supposed to be exciting. This isn't. At all! [Looks in the highest bedside table drawer.] Ooh, I wonder if there's any snacks in here. [There are no snacks, so Bolin keeps look in the other drawers and finds a Pai Sho board.] Hey, look! A Pai Sho board! Mako, you want to play?
Mako Kind of busy here, bro.
Asami I'll play.
Bolin Oh, well, ugh, no offense but I learned street Pai Sho from Shady Shin, and I'm pretty good. So, wouldn't really be a fair game.
Asami So? I learned to play from my dad, the diabolical genius. I'll destroy you.
Bolin Well, looks we've got ourselves a Pai-Shodown. [They set up their boards.] Ladies first. [They exchange a couple moves, but Asami stops and thinks on one of her turns.] Uh, I don't mean to rush you, but let's speed things up a bit.
Asami Why? This game is all about slow, methodical strategy.
Bolin No, it's not. This is a fast-paced, edge of your seat, game of chance! Don't think. Just go.
Asami I don't know what Shady Shin taught you, but it wasn't the real Pai Sho.
Bolin Oh really? I think Mr. Rulebook might disagree with you. [Reads from the rulebook.] The origins of Pai Sho date back over ten thousand years. It is a game of both strategy and chance. Wait, how can it be both?
Asami Let me see that. [Takes the book and starts reading from it.] There have been countless variations of Pai Sho through the centuries and each culture has its own rules and variations of the game.
Bolin That's no help at all. Korra, as the Avatar, you need to standardize these Pai Sho rules.
Korra [Sarcastically.] Okay, I'll put that on my to-do list, right after bringing back the Air Nation and taking down the group that tried to kidnap me.
Bolin That's cool. Whenever you get to it.
Mako Assuming we do find Zaheer, what then?
Korra Then I make him talk.
Mako He was locked away for thirteen years, Korra, and never broke. I don't think a little bending is going to intimidate this guy.
Korra You have a better idea?
Mako Yeah, we spy on them. If Aiwei and Zaheer don't know they're being watched, they'll talk freely. Then we'll find out who they are and what they want.
Bolin That's just like Pai Sho! [Reading from the book.] In order to defeat your opponent, you first have to know your opponent.
Asami Then I guess I know you pretty well. [Makes a winning move.] I win.
Bolin What? Ugh. All right, you know what that was just a fluke. Best two out of three. [They keep playing many times and Asami keeps winning.] Oh, come on! Best four out of seven. Eight out of fifteen. Seventeen out of thirty-three? [Time passes by and it gets close to sundown, and Bolin gets close to finally winning.] Ha, ha! Looks like you're on the ropes this time.
Asami I can't believe it. You might actually win this one. [Right at that moment, Pabu leaps off of Naga and onto the board, scattering the pieces.]
Bolin No, Pabu? [Crying a little bit.] Why? [The doll's head falls off and rolls near him.]
Korra It's almost sundown. Why hasn't Aiwei left yet?
Asami Maybe he sneaked out when you weren't looking.
Mako No, I just saw him peeking out of his window fifteen minutes ago. It's in my logbook.
Korra I'm going over there. [Leaves the room.]
Mako Korra, wait! You're going to blow our element of surprise. [Nevertheless, Team Avatar follows her. Korra busts down Aiwei's door with airbending.]
Korra It's over, Aiwei! Where's ...? [Korra looks and sees Aiwei meditating on his bed.] What?
Bolin That's a weird way to nap.
Korra He's not sleeping. He's meditating. Wait! Asami, those spirits were trying to tell us something earlier. Xai Bau's Grove isn't on the map because it's not in the physical world! It's in the Spirit World! I'm going in after him. [Sits down beside Aiwei.]
Mako We'll watch him in case he wakes up. Be careful!
Korra meditates and successfully passes into the Spirit World. She looks from behind a tree and sees Aiwei standing on a nearby hill in front of another tree. Zaheer materializes across from him.
Zaheer What happened back in Zaofu? You told me we wouldn't have any problems getting the Avatar? Because of you, we've all been compromised.
Aiwei No, any evidence was destroyed when my library burned.
Zaheer Where is your physical body now?
Aiwei At the Misty Palms Inn. But there is no need to worry. I was not followed.
Zaheer You left a loose end.
Aiwei I assure you, no one knows anything about us.
Zaheer [Angrily.] No, you are the loose end. [Grabs hold of Aiwei.]
Korra Zaheer!
Zaheer teleports himself and Aiwei toward a cliff at the rim of the Fog of Lost Souls and throws Aiwei off it, before he teleports back to the tree.
Zaheer It seems Aiwei was mistaken. He was followed.
Korra That's right. We knew he'd lead us straight to you. Now, what did you do with him?
Zaheer He'll be spending eternity in the Fog of Lost Souls, which just leaves the two of us. [He takes a step forward.]
Korra Don't move, Zaheer. You're going to give me some answers.
Zaheer [Sits back down.] There's no need for aggression. Neither of us has our bending, and I'm not going anywhere. I'll answer whatever questions you have. You deserve that much. [Pauses, as Korra looks surprised.] What would you like to know?
Korra First off, who are you people, and why do you keep trying to take me?
Zaheer We are part of a secret society, dedicated to restoring freedom to the world. We are the Red Lotus.
Korra Red Lotus? Are you related to the White Lotus?
Zaheer We are what the White Lotus was meant to be. But after the Hundred Year War, the White Lotus lost its true purpose. Its members came out of hiding and openly served the Avatar. They became nothing but glorified bodyguards who served corrupt nations. So a great man named Xai Bau broke from the White Lotus and began his own society.
Korra That's a great story, but it doesn't explain why you tried to take me when I was a kid.
Zaheer That was Unalaq's idea.
Korra What? My uncle was part of the Red Lotus?
Scene shifts to the Red Lotus hideout, as Zaheer's physical body begins to speak to his companions.
Zaheer Avatar Korra. Misty Palms Inn. Find her.
P-Li You two go. I'll stay here and make sure Zaheer's body is safe.
Ming-Hua and Ghazan leave. The scene shifts back to Xai Bau's Grove.
Zaheer I met your uncle when I was a teenager, after we had both joined the Red Lotus. We learned about Raava and Vaatu, and how Avatar Wan foolishly severed them, disrupting the balance of the world forever.
Korra Avatar Wan wasn't foolish! He was trying to restore balance.
Zaheer He closed the portals, severing humans from spirits. Even you realize the error in his ways.
Korra So all along, you and my uncle planned to use me to open the portals and release Vaatu? That's why you tried to take me when I was a kid?
Zaheer Yes, and with members of the Red Lotus as your elemental masters, we could've taught you so much.
Korra It sounds like you were just trying to brainwash me so I'd do whatever you wanted.
Zaheer No, Korra. All I wanted was to show the Avatar a better path for the world.
Scene shifts back to the rest of Team Avatar in the physical world. Mako glances out of the window and sees Ming-Hua and Ghazan.
Mako Uh, I don't know how, but Water Arm Lady and Lava Guy found us. [Bolin gasps and Asami stands up.]
Asami How?
Mako I just said I don't know how!
Bolin [Frantically shaking Korra.] Korra, come on! Wake up!
Asami What do we do?
Mako [Mako carries Korra and places her on Naga.] Get Korra out of here. Bolin and I will hold them off.
The door opens and Asami rides off on Naga, holding Korra.
Ming-Hua The Avatar!
Naga turns a corner, and Ming-Hua fires ice shards at her, but misses. She begins fighting Mako, while Bolin takes on Ghazan. The Red Lotus earthbender knocks down the two brothers with lavabending.

The scene shifts back to Xai Bau's Grove.

Korra If my uncle came up with a plan to abduct me when I was a kid, why wasn't he caught?
Zaheer He wasn't with us that night, and he covered up his involvement afterwards.
Korra So he betrayed you, just like he betrayed me.
Zaheer Yes. He allowed me and my friends to remain in prison while he pursued his own selfish goals. Unalaq becoming a Dark Avatar was never part of our mission.
Korra And what is your mission, exactly?
Zaheer I want what you want: to restore balance to this world.
Korra I don't think our ideas of balance are the same.
Zaheer Are you sure about that? You kept the spirit portals open. But why stop there? Bringing the spirits back should only be the beginning.
Korra What do you mean?
Zaheer The idea of having nations and governments is as foolish as keeping the human and spirit realms separate. You've had to deal with a moronic president and a tyrannical queen. Don't you think the world would be better off if leaders like them were eliminated?
Korra No. I mean, I don't really agree with what they've done, but taking out world leaders isn't the answer.
Zaheer It wasn't too long ago that the airbenders were nearly all wiped out, thanks to the Fire Lord's desire for world dominance. True freedom can only be achieved when oppressive governments are torn down.
Korra But that won't bring balance. It will throw the world into chaos.
Zaheer Exactly. The natural order is disorder. Do you know who once said, "New growth cannot exist without first the destruction of the old"?
Korra No.
Zaheer The wise Guru Laghima. An airbender.
The scene shifts to the battle at the Misty Palms Inn. Ming-Hua attacks Mako with waterbending, but he avoids it and firebends back at her, which she also blocks. She begins repeatedly attacking him, overwhelming him. Meanwhile, Ghazan harasses Bolin with lavabending.
Bolin I can't beat this guy! It's like I'm giving him ammo! Want to trade?
Mako runs near a wall and jumps to avoid another one of Ming-Hua's waterbending attacks. He tries to fight back, but Ming-Hua pins him against a door with ice, grinning evilly. She picks him off the door and throws him against another door, stunning him. Meanwhile Bolin jumps into the pool to avoid Ghazan's attacks, and swims toward the bottom, but Ming-Hua traps him in a sphere of water and brings him up to the surface.
Ming-Hua Go get the Avatar! I have these two under control.
Ghazan runs off.  Ming-Hua picks up a limp Mako; Bolin surfaces, gasping, from the water sphere.  Meanwhile, Naga has made progress and is running up a hill outside of the town, but she is quickly trapped in an earth tent.

The scene shifts back to Xai Bau's Grove.

Zaheer You know, being locked away for so many years, I was beginning to lose hope. [Stands up.] But when I awoke with airbending, I knew I would be the one to destroy the old world and plant seeds for a new world to flourish.
Korra [Stands up as well.] Zaheer, please, as an airbender, you could help make a positive difference in the world, instead of destroying it.
Zaheer You're a very smart young woman, Korra. But you must realize that once change begins, it cannot be stopped, even by the Avatar.
Korra Enough with your philosophical mumbo-jumbo! I want to know one thing. If you do capture me, what are you going to do with me?
Zaheer You'll have that answer soon enough. The Red Lotus should have you by now. See you in the physical world. [His spiritual body starts to leave Xai Bau's Grove.]
Korra Zaheer! [Starts to run toward the tree, but stops. She goes back to the physical world, and finds herself tied up by a strait jacket and muzzled along with other restraints.] Zaheer, you tricked me! Let me go! [Sees Asami handcuffed near her.] Asami, are you okay? Where's the rest of the Red Lotus?
Asami What's the Red Lotus? And Zaheer didn't capture us, the Earth Queen's forces did.
Korra Where are we?
Asami I'm not sure. Some camp by the desert. They're taking us back to Ba Sing Se.
The scene shifts to the Red Lotus hideout.
Ghazan The Earth Queen's army snatched up the Avatar before I could. [Ming-Hua and Ghazan drop Mako and Bolin, who are tied up and visibly battered.]
Ming-Hua But we figured you could find a use for these two.
Zaheer Load them in the truck. We're taking a trip to Ba Sing Se.
Cut to credits.

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