[22:18:51] <@KataraPlushie> As a radiant sun shone overhead and an autumn breeze rustled the brilliantly-colored leaves of the trees, Katara stepped outside the house at which she, Aang and Sokka were staying. They were visiting Kyoshi Island after being invited to come there by Suki and Ty Lee. It was late morning and with no real plans, she wondered what to do that day.
[22:20:51] <@AangPlushie> Sokka came downstairs in his typical Water Tribe look. "Well, I'm headed out to meet up with Suki," he then said. "What are you two going to do?" Aang rubbed his chin. "To be honest, we're not entirely sure." Sokka then tried to think of something for them. "Hey," the warrior then said, "Maybe since I'm headed out with Suki, you guys could hang out with Ty Lee."
[22:25:05] <@KataraPlushie> Katara glanced over at Aang, brightening at the idea. "Yeah, we could actually. As long as she's not busy with anything, of course." "We'll go find her and see what she's up to," Aang told her. "I think it would be nice to spend time together."
[22:29:18] <@AangPlushie> "I agree," Aang said, "especially with how close of friends you guys have gotten as of late. A lot of letters between you two." Sokka then approached them and placed his hands on their shoulders. "Come with me to meet Suki at the training facility, and we'll see if Ty Lee is there. Does that sound like a plan with you two?" The couple looked at each other and nodded. "All right," Katara said. "It's worth a try."
[22:33:51] <@KataraPlushie> The trio ambled along the path to the dojo where several warriors were already practicing their moves. Suki sat idly on the sidelines before catching sight of them and breaking into a smile. "There you are, Sokka!" she exclaimed. "Hey, Aang, Katara," she greeted the other two, who were surverying the room for Ty Lee.
[09:07:36] <@AangPlushie> Sokka and Suki shared a brief kiss before the Kyoshi Warrior turned the other two and noticed them looking around a bit. "What's up, you two?" Suki asked them. "Is Ty Lee around?" Katara asked back. "She should be here," Suki answered, and then called for her. "Ty Lee? Aang and Katara are here, and they want to see you." (Cont'd)
[09:09:42] <@AangPlushie> In another room, Ty Lee was putting her last bit of makeup on. "I'll be right out," she answered. After that, Suki looked towards the other couple as she locked hands with Sokka and asked, "So, I guess you two want to hang out with her?" "Yeah," Aang answered, "Since Katara and I really don't have any plans...it was actually Sokka who came up with the idea."
[09:14:50] <@KataraPlushie> "Well, she didn't tell me she had anything special planned..." Suki said, thoughtfully. "I'm sure she'd be happy to spend the day with you guys." "Shall we?" Sokka asked, receiving a nod from the Kyoshi warrior, who bade them farewell. "We'll see you guys, later." They waved and went off, leaving the couple to wait for Ty Lee.
[09:19:05] <@AangPlushie> "Take care you two," Katara said as her brother and his girlfriend left. "It's been a long while since we were here," Aang added as they waited for Ty Lee. "Yeah," Katara replied, "and even longer for you, because you weren't with us that one time we had to come...you were in prison as I recall." Aang laid a palm on his face. "Oh yeah, that thing with Chin Village...I'd rather forget about that."
[09:23:36] <@KataraPlushie> Katara chuckled slightly, remembering Sokka saying it had been the worst town they had ever visited and the truth to that statement. "That was pretty crazy... But so was the first time we'd all been here." Aang smiled as he recalled that visit. Just then, Ty Lee came out, dressed in her warrior uniform and spotted the two instantly. She quickly brightened at seeing them.
[09:28:39] <@AangPlushie> "It was the wo--" Aang stopped when he saw Ty Lee, so as not to interrupt her. "Katara! Aang!" Ty Lee exclaimed as the two propped themselves up to meet their friend. Ty Lee then pulled the two into a warm hug. "It's so great to see you both! We haven't met up since the end of the War!" As the hug broke up, Katara nodded. "I know, it's been so long...at least you and I have passed the time with letters."
[09:34:18] <@KataraPlushie> "Yeah, that's helped fill the gap, but it's not the same as actually seeing you guys. I'm so glad you decided to stay here for a few days," Ty Lee exclaimed. "I hope we're not interrupting anything," Katara told her apologetically, but Ty Lee merely waved her hand in dismissal and replied, "Nah, I wasn't really doing anything special. I'd rather hang out with you, anyway."
[09:37:14] <@AangPlushie> "Good," Katara answered, "Because we really didn't have any plans ourselves. Sokka suggested the idea and we just kind of ran with it, given how long it's been." Aang then asked, "Well, it's been a while since I've been here, so I really don't remember much of where the best places are. Any ideas, Ty Lee?"
[09:42:22] <@KataraPlushie> Ty Lee pondered all the places on Kyoshi Island where they could go. "Well, there aren't too many exciting spots in the actual village, except for the Kyoshi shrine. It's always nice down by the water. But there are also more mountainous regions north of here that are pretty breathtaking. We could always take a hike up around there," she suggested.
[09:44:56] <@AangPlushie> "I haven't seen the Kyoshi Shrine," Aang said, "All I know is that that's where Sokka and Katara went when they had to come here. It would be cool to see a little more about one of my past lives, and then we could take that hike." "That sounds like a good idea to me," Ty Lee replied. "Do you agree, Katara?"
[09:49:39] <@KataraPlushie> "That's just fine with me," Katara agreed to the plans. "The shrine is really beautiful," Ty Lee commented. "Just be careful with the relics. Oyaji doesn't like people playing with them." "Ugh, like my brother," Katara said, rolling her eyes at this remembrance. "Don't worry, we'll be careful," Aang said, bowing slightly.
[09:53:39] <@AangPlushie> With that, the three left the dojo, Aang and Katara locking hands. Ty Lee turned to them and asked, "So, how have things been lately? Aang, how's life at the Southern Water Tribe?" "Things are going well," Aang answered. "Moving to the tribe was a big adjustment, but over the past few months, I feel like I have adjusted into things quite well."
[09:57:40] <@KataraPlushie> "Indeed, and I'm glad you're really settling in. Although the cold is still something to get used to," Katara noted. Aang let out a laugh, saying, "Oh yeah, that'll take some time. What about yourself, Ty Lee? How have you been liking Kyoshi Island? I take it you've made some great friends with the warriors."
[10:00:51] <@AangPlushie> "You bet!" Ty Lee answered in her typical enthusiastic tone. "We've all gotten along really well, ever since we bonded in prison. Also, a few weeks ago, we got a new warrior!" "Oh, who is it?" Katara asked. "She's a younger girl, I think only 11 years old...but she looks pretty strong. Suki said she had a lot of potential and apparently has a lot of good training and moves, so, she let her in."
[10:06:56] <@KataraPlushie> "That was nice of Suki," Katara remarked. "Yeah, and not a bad decision either. She looks very promising. Astora, I think her name is," Ty Lee said. "And I'm very happy with how quickly the warriors are learning chi-blocking. It feels good to be able to teach them what I know as they've taught me." They neared the building that housed the shrine.
[10:09:26] <@AangPlushie> "Does it feel any different being sort of a teacher?" Katara asked. "It is an interesting feeling," Ty Lee answered. "It is kind of weird since I'm not the warriors' leader, and here I am teaching the teacher, since Suki is learning as well. Hey, that reminds me! Katara, I heard you were offered by Master Pakku to become a waterbending teacher. Are you going to accept?"
[10:13:04] <@KataraPlushie> "Oh, well, I've really been thinking about it. It is something I'm interested in, so I'm thinking maybe I will accept," Katara replied. "Well, not to make the choice for you, but I think you should. You'd be highly qualified," Ty Lee encouraged. "That's what I tell her," Aang said, giving Katara a slight nudge and a wink.
[10:16:07] <@AangPlushie> Katara blushed somewhat. "Come on guys," she said. "I'm sure there are others who are better." "Katara, think about it," Aang told her. "Master Pakku, one of the best waterbenders in the world...asked /you/ to be a teacher to young waterbenders. I think that's a pretty good evaluation of your abilities."
[10:22:25] <@KataraPlushie> "Yeah, and come on, what other 'better' waterbenders?" Ty Lee asked, giving her an incredulous look. "I'm willing to bet you beat the others by a longshot." "Well... I guess I'll have to think about it a bit more," Katara said. "But thanks for the encouragement. I'll write to you once I make my final decision," she told Ty Lee who nodded and said, "Good." At last, they arrived at the shrine. "Well, here we are," the warrior announced.
[10:27:18] <@AangPlushie> The three walked up the stone path to the shrine's entrance. There was no one else present, so they walked in with no further disturbances. Inside the room where all the relics were stored, Aang's eyes lit up in amazement as he saw all that his past incarnation had held and what Kyoshi had done."
[10:32:00] <@KataraPlushie> The shrine was the same as Katara had remembered it since last time, the ornate weapons and outfits all in place and at the back, the wall-to-wall painting of the island. Aang looked around in fascination, enthralled in the relics. "I can't believe these are the real things. And they look almost new for being centuries old," he exclaimed.
[10:38:33] <@AangPlushie> "Oyaji has some people come up pretty consistently to make sure everything stays clean," Ty Lee said. "So yes, evertything looks new." Aang then looked at the painting of the Birth of Kyoshi Island. "So...according to this description...this was when the island wad founded? Wow...over three hundred years ago."
[10:45:03] <@KataraPlushie> "Heh, yeah, it's from a very long time ago. It's a very beautiful painting isn't it? Even though I've seen it several times already, it still captivates me," the warrior said dreamily. She walked around the room, along with Katara, examining the other items, from scrolls to little trinkets the Avatar had kept.
[10:50:09] <@AangPlushie> "It is very well-kept," Aang noted. "Oyaji has done a good job with making sure everything stays in line." They continued to survery the shrine. One scroll on a wall contained one of Kyoshi's quotes that Aang was familiar with: "Only justice will bring peace." /This must have been a key part of her personality all her life.../ the airbender mused.
[10:53:38] <@KataraPlushie> Katara noticed the thoughtful expression that crossed Aang's face as he read this quote. The Avatar glanced over at her and explained, "This was what she told me when I was on the lion turtle and trying to figure out what to do about Ozai. Truth be told, though, I kind of resented her for saying that. Not to be disrespectful, but I didn't identify with it."
[10:58:05] <@AangPlushie> Katara let out a silent gasp as Aang's words. "That's...pretty harsh to say about one of your past lives," she said. "I know you mostly have contact with Roku for advice, but...you really shouldn't say something like that about a past life, especially if you have to turn to her for advice for whatever reason."
[11:02:33] <@KataraPlushie> Aang sighed, saying, "Well, it wasn't that I resented her herself; I just resented asking her. Knowing her tougher nature and how she allegedly killed Chin the Conqueror, I should have suspected that she and I would see differently about ending Ozai. But I don't mean to upset anyone when I say that."
[11:08:21] <@AangPlushie> Katara nodded in understanding. "All right then," she said. "I just don't want you to get in trouble or something, and also knowing that this island was founded by Kyoshi...well, you know." Ty Lee looked around some more as the couple continued to talk. "It's amazing, all that Kyoshi did in her life," the warrior said. "Just like you, Aang, she had to stop a war, and she did successfully."
[11:12:05] <@KataraPlushie> "That's true. Even if we do see things differently, the things we've accomplished are quite similar in a way," Aang remarked. "And don't worry, Katara, I'll be careful about what I say about Kyoshi here. I do respect her a lot, just some differences..." Katara nodded in understanding.
[11:14:36] <@AangPlushie> "Well, I think we've seen all we needed to see," Ty Lee said. "I mean, there isn't too much here. Now then, if we continue to climb up the mountain, we can catch that view of the water. It's a really nice view of things...I've taken the hike a couple times myself when I've needed to think."
[11:17:57] <@KataraPlushie> "Sounds really nice. Let's go then," Katara prodded, taking Aang's hand again. The three stepped outside the shrine and, with Ty Lee leading the way, began venturing upwards to the peak of the mountain. Thankfully it was a clear day, so they would have a perfect view of the South Sea.
[11:23:48] <@AangPlushie> Aang looked around at the scenery of the mountain. "It's a very nice forest," he remarked, watching a blue jay fly by. Indeed, it was quite serene, just how his people enjoyed it, and just how personality was. "I agree," Katara added. "It's a perfect spot for a walk, an escape from the world..."
[20:27:55] <@KataraPlushie> "Yeah, sometimes you can use a break from reality and all its craziness," Ty Lee agreed. "Suki said that during the War, when they would receive word of losses and attacks in the Earth Kingdom, she would come up here and think over things. She said it put her mind at ease." As they climbed higher, the air grew a bit colder, but nothing too unbearable.
[20:30:30] <@AangPlushie> "I can certainly see why," Aang said. They continued up the hill, Ty Lee helping them along, as Aang and Katara had never seen that part of the island. "At some point on this mountain, we may have passed it already," Ty Lee mentioned, "Oyaji has planned for a picnic area or a more formal overlook of sorts for hikers, and it's already being constructed."
[20:35:33] <@KataraPlushie> "That's a good idea. Tourists should be able to go somewhere to relax and see how lovely this place is and the view, too," said Katara. "I know. But they may hold off for a while until spring, depending on how severe or not this winter is," Ty Lee informed them. "In any case, you should come by again when construction is finished."
[20:38:17] <@AangPlushie> "We will," Aang said. "I'm sure this won't be the last time we come to Kyoshi." The walk up the hill continued, with the three making the occasional stop to take in the views of the flora and occasional fauna that would slip by. The sound of birds singing in the forest was evident. Soon, the end of the forest and the edge of the mountain came into eyeshot.
[20:41:54] <@KataraPlushie> "Just a little higher up. Oh, and watch your step because it can get a little steep here," Ty Lee warned the two. Carefully, they trekked up the mountainside, helping each other along, until at last, they reached the overlook. "Wow...," Katara breathed as she took in the stunning view of the island. Aang was equally awe-inspired.
[20:45:32] <@AangPlushie> Aang looked at the view of the island his past incarnation crafted, and was left amazed. He also took in the view of the large ocean which led up to Kyoshi, again captivating him. "It's perfect," he then remarked, finally electing to take a seat at the mountain's ledge while he took it in. "See, I told you guys it was great," Ty Lee said.
[21:17:42] <@KataraPlushie> She and Katara both sat down as well with Katara smiling and saying, "I think 'great' is an understatement." They sat there for several moments, contemplating the scenery. In the distance, Katara could see elephant koi leaping gracefully out of the water and was brought back to memories of Aang riding them.
[21:19:57] <@AangPlushie> Aang too saw the elephant koi hopping around. "I remember when I used to want to ride those," he recalled. "But I don't know, after last time, I don't think those are really for me anymore, given that the unagi is out there...then again, it could also just be an effect of me getting older..though I still like penguin-sledding...I'm rambling, aren't I?"
[21:23:36] <@KataraPlushie> Katara laugh light-heartedly, Ty Lee also chuckling. "No, it's fine," the young waterbender assured him. "Yep, you still enjoy penguin-sledding. Even though you're very mature, it's like you told me long ago, 'you still /are/ a kid'."
[21:26:22] <@AangPlushie> "I guess we're all still young at heart," Aang said with a smile. "Even Gyatso, in his older years, still enjoyed the occasional light-hearted activity." Katara nodded in agreement. "That's right, no one ever gets too old to have some fun. You know, they say all work and no play makes one a dull guy...or I guess in my case, girl," she added with a laugh.
[21:30:26] <@KataraPlushie> "That's true," Ty Lee agreed. "The warriors and I always have downtime between training sesssions. We don't go riding animals or anything, but we play Pai Sho a lot. One time, we even played a game of hide-and-seek around the village. We were like a bunch of little kids, I know, but it felt nice." After a pause, she asked, "Where did Sokka and Suki decide to go today? Too bad they couldn't be here to see the view."
[21:34:54] <@AangPlushie> "Sokka said something about them going out for lunch, and then taking a boat trip out to Whale Tail Island, and then returning," Katara answered. "So, I guess we have the most of the day to ourselves." Ty Lee nodded. "All right. Well, it looks like it's just after midday, so if you want to, we can get some food ourselves.
[21:40:49] <@KataraPlushie> "That sounds just fine," Katara replied. "Aang, are you up for that?" The Avatar nodded. "Sure. Too bad we'll have to leave here, though." "We can always come back later, if you want," Ty Lee offered, rising to her feet. "The good thing is that hiking up here isn't too tiring or time-consuming."
[21:44:59] <@AangPlushie> Aang nodded in agreement. "I got to agree with that." He then took a couple more minutes to enjoy the view, Katara at his side. "Man...if I had my staff...I'd just want to leap off the edge here, take hold of the glider, and just fly...it's that perfect. It really is a great place to relax and unwind."
[21:50:40] <@KataraPlushie> "I couldn't agree more," Katara said cheerily. "I guess you'll have to make a note for yourself to bring your glider next time." The two held hands and they slowly made their way back down the mountain, watching their step as they dropped down. At last they reached level ground. "So do you have anyplace in mind?" Katara asked Ty Lee.
[21:53:03] <@AangPlushie> "I know the perfect place," Ty Lee answered. "It's kind of a casual place, not exactly a dress-up type place; you can just stay as you look right now. However, it's got some great food, and it's pretty reasonably priced. It's down at the bottom of the hill, and it's family-owned. It's got a little bit of everything for everyone. Follow me!"
[21:58:29] <@KataraPlushie> She took the lead once more, guiding them around the base of the mountain until the aforementioned place came into view. It seemed very cozy, a happily-run business tucked away in the more hilly part of the island. Inside, daylight poured in through large windows; the room had a charming feel to it.
[22:02:00] <@AangPlushie> Some customers were present in the restaurant, with conversation being carried on idly. The three waited to be seated, before after a moment, a hostess met them, and took three menus. "Welcome to the Shing Family Resturant," she said. "Follow me over here, and I'll get---" she then stopped upon seeing just who she was dealing with, and then bowed. "My goodness...the Avatar! And the waterbending master, Katara! It's an honor to have you both here."
[10:21:47] <@KataraPlushie> Both smiled at the kind words of the hostess. "Well, we're happy to be here. This place is quite charming," Aang complimented. "Why thank you. My parents have run this business for five years now; they'll surely be happy to hear that you've come by. And it's great to see you, Ty Lee." She gestured for the three to follow her to a table. "I hope you find everything to your liking."
[10:24:38] <@AangPlushie> "I'm sure we will," Katara said as she took her seat. Their menus were then given to one another, but Ty Lee shook her hand at the hostess. "No thanks," the warrior then said. "I already know what I want." The hostess nodded and then left the table. "Ever since this place opened, there has always been one dish I've enjoyed the most," Ty Lee clarified.
[10:30:38] <@KataraPlushie> "Which one?" Katara inquired as she perused over the menu. "It's the steamed shrimp and rice dish. It comes with soy sauce and vegetables and it's just fabulous," the warrior replied. "I recommend it to everyone who comes here." "Hm, does sound good," Katara said thoughtfully. "Do you ever get anything else here?"
[10:33:21] <@AangPlushie> "Really, not very often," Ty Lee said with a chuckle. "I like it so much, why change things around?" "I understand," Katara said, "I just think some variety every now and then is a good thing." Ty Lee nodded, but still had heart set on the shrimp and rice. Aang looked at some of the vegetable dishes on the menu. He then said, "I wonder what people think of the steamed brocolli over rice. Comes with sides of carrots and corn..."
[10:38:56] <@KataraPlushie> "A couple of my friends have ordered that and say it's pretty good," Ty Lee informed him. "Then I'm thinking maybe I'll get that," Aang declared, setting down his menu. He looked over at Katara who decided on a pork dish. The hostess came quickly and took their orders then went to the kitchen. "So, Aang," Ty Lee began, "Katara tells me you've had to go to a lot of meetings, sometimes for weeks on end..."
[10:41:33] <@AangPlushie> Aang nodded and said, "Well, she's right. There's been a lot to deal with in this postwar enviornment. Zuko, the Earth King and I are trying to figure out what to do with colonies, and the people living within. Not to mention, we're still trying to figure out damages and whatnot, what we're going to do with everything. It's a very long and challening process that's going to continue for a while."
[10:44:34] <@KataraPlushie> "I can only imagine how tedious things can be," Ty Lee remarked. She turned to Katara, asking, "Do you ever accompany him to the Fire Nation or wherever the meetings are held?" "Sometimes I do," Katara told her. "But often times not. And if I take up that teaching position, I may not be able to at all."
[10:46:08] <@AangPlushie> "Well," Ty Lee added, "Hopefully you can as much as possible. It's hard to be away from the ones that you love, especially when it can be for weeks at a time. Hopefully the process will wrap up a little quicker and you guys can get some more time together." "Thanks," Katara said. "It is hard when Aang is away for such significant amounts of time."
[11:53:45] <@KataraPlushie> "I hate being away, too. But hopefully you're right, Ty Lee, and as more is worked out, there'll be fewer meetings," Aang said. Ty Lee nodded then asked, "So how is everyone else? Zuko? Toph? I haven't kept in touch with them really. Only you guys. Have you seen them lately?"
[11:56:07] <@AangPlushie> "Well, I saw Zuko a few weeks ago during a meeting," Aang said. "He's doing quite well despite the increased workload. It does keep him on his feet, but he's able to hold up well, and I heard his relationship with Mai is going great as well." Katara then took over the flow. "As for Toph, we heard she's going to become a teacher earthbending, and is in the process of setting up an academy in her home town."
[12:01:51] <@KataraPlushie> "That's very good to hear. Mai and I haven't seen much of each other lately or written for that matter. I think today I'll send her a letter and try to arrange plans to meet again - we're still close friends, after all," Ty Lee said. "And the best of luck to Toph with her academy. Her parents must be so proud."
[12:03:42] <@AangPlushie> "That's somewhat disappointing," Katara said. "You two still remained close friends, even after betraying Azula...I hope you two can get to hear from each other more." The name Azula cringed at Katara slightly. /Hmmm...it's odd...how could someone like Ty Lee be friends with someone like Azula for so long?/ She mused quietly in her mind, keeping somewhat of a focus on the warrior. /I just don't get it.../
[12:07:15] <@KataraPlushie> Ty Lee noticed Katara looking at her quizically and wondered what she was thinking. "Um, Katara, are you okay?" she asked. The waterbender broke away from her gaze for a moment, saying, "I'm sorry. I was just wondering... Well, you're so sweet and caring by nature... How did you and Azula have such a tight bond? She's so different from you."
[12:14:50] <@AangPlushie> "It's a long story," Ty Lee answered. "Perhaps we can talk about later." She grew a little more nervous and thoughtful, not exactly sure what to say. As this brief silence settled in, a waitress arrived to take the group's orders. "What can I get for you today?" Ty Lee answered as expected, "The shrimp and rice dish, please." After that, the waitress then turned to Aang. "I'll have the steamed brocolli over rice, with the carrots and corn on the side." She took down this order and then turned to Katara.
[12:21:32] <@KataraPlushie> "I'll take the roast pork with noodles," Katara told her. The waitress wrote this down quickly, saying, "Alright, they should be out very soon," before leaving to tell the cooks. Again a silence fell over them with Katara growing a little concerned for her friend, who seemed caught off-guard. To break the awkward feeling, she asked, "So, uh, have you traveled anywhere really since coming to the island?"
[12:25:34] <@AangPlushie> "Well," Ty Lee said, "I have traveled out to Whale Tail Island on that same cruise Sokka and Suki are going on. I've also gotten to see Omashu, and Aang, I heard that the king there was one of your friends from a hundred years ago!" Aang nodded. "Indeed, King Bumi," he then said. "I was glad to see he had survived all this time, and now I'm glad to hear he's ruling the city again." After a moment, Ty Lee continued. "I've also been back to the Fire Nation, though the last trip was months ago."
[12:31:05] <@KataraPlushie> "Where in the Fire Nation did you visit?" Katara inquired. "I stopped by Ember Island for a couple days. I just had to see it again after my first visit. Other than that, nowhere special - just a few other outlying islands. I had wanted to visit the capital, but I didn't have the time. Had to come back here for training," Ty Lee recalled.
[12:34:12] <@AangPlushie> "Too bad," Katara said. "I'm sure you would have love to have met up with Zuko and Mai, am I right?" Ty Lee nodded, kind of in a disappointed state. "Right...especially since we haven't seen each other much since the War ended. I guess that's just the way things work out sometimes." She then shook her head somewhat somberly, disappointed in not seeing some of her closest and oldest friends.
[12:37:42] <@KataraPlushie> Katara laid a hand on Ty Lee's arm in comfort and said, "Don't worry, I'm sure you'll get to see them soon. And I'll bet they want to get together just as much as you do. Sometimes that happens with even your closest friends - you fall out of contact for a while. But in addition to Toph, you should write to Zuko and Mai."
[12:42:06] <@AangPlushie> Aang nodded in agreement. "Writing is always a good way to keep in touch...that's what Katara and I have been up to not just with you, but with everyone from the team." "Okay," Ty Lee finally said. "Tomorrow, I probably will send a letter out to them. It's been too long."
[18:51] <@Ultimate> "That's good," Katara smiled and gave her approval, noticing that with this encouragement, Ty Lee's previously downcast mood had been lightened. She sat back in her chair and admired the scenery outside, the way the colorful leaves of the trees gleamed and the mountains towered. She had never known the island to be this beautiful even though she'd been there twice.
[18:54] <@KataraFanboy> "It is really nice-looking," Aang said to Katara, noticing her looking out. "Now that I've finally gotten to see it, it's easy to appreciate how beautiful it is." Katara nodded and said, "I know...it's amazing what happens when you take time and stop to look at the world around you. This place is amazing..."
[18:57] <@Ultimate> "It truly is; even now, I don't tire of it," Ty Lee said with a sigh. "It's nice to see trees and the leaves changing color and to be able to crunch through them, especially when you live in a place with only snow and ice to look at," Katara mused. "Oh, come on, the South Pole is beautiful, too," Ty Lee told her, "just in it's own way."
[19:02] <@KataraFanboy> "It is," Katara replied, "But at the same time, you do want to see something else after a while. Don't get me wrong, I love my home, and I love being at home...but seeing the world is a fun experience as well. It's why I don't mind these vacations every so often." Ty Lee nodded in understanding. As she did, the group's food arrived to their table.
[19:07] <@Ultimate> They thanked the waitress who told them to enjoy and went away before they began. "Good as always," Ty Lee commented cheerily. Katara took a bite of the pork and nodded approvingly. "Wow, this is pretty good." She turned to Aang who simply said, "Excellent." Ty Lee beamed, hearing her friends' approval.
[19:12:39] <@KataraFanboy> As the eating continued, Katara couldn't help but feel her uneasiness rise again over Ty Lee's past. However, she again shrugged off and decided she would wait to speak with her one-on-one, instead continuing to eat the pork dish in front of her. Aang broke the silence that had settled in by asking Ty Lee, "So, while you were in prison, how did you make such quick friends of the Kyoshi Warriors?
[19:16:37] <@Ultimate> "It wasn't too easy initially," Ty Lee recalled. "They still resented what me, Mai and Azula had done to them that time in the forest and of course, I understood why. I hadn't been the nicest, saying they would never be as pretty as we were." She sighed at this, but continued on.(cont'd)
[19:19:24] <@Ultimate> "So we kept our distance for quite a while. But I found myself not wanting to have this animosity between us. We often had free time out in the courtyard together and all we would do is sit there. One day, I just decided I had had enough... And I did the only thing I could - I apologized," she told them.
[19:21:51] <@KataraFanboy> "What did you say to them?" Katara asked. "Essentially," Ty Lee began, "I told them that I got too heated during battle and didn't mean what I said about their looks, and also that I had changed, no longer affiliating myself with Azula. I spoke as sincerely as I could, and after some talking, they accepted me! Not only that, but they did so rather warmly."
[19:27:40] <@Ultimate> "It's nice that you were able to get along with them so quickly," Katara said. "Yep," Ty Lee replied, bright-eyed. "After that, we no longer sulked around in the courtyard. We made small talk at first, but we soon grew really close, sharing stories and even laughing. And when I told them of chi-blocking, they expressed their desire to learn it as well. It made those days bearable."
[19:31:47] <@KataraFanboy> "From what I heard from my Dad," Katara said, "Those days can get long. You really don't have any grip on what time it is, everything's regulated...without having some friends, it is tough. A good set of friends helps everything, doesn't it?" Ty Lee nodded again and said, "Isn't that the truth! I mean, I know I had Mai, but to have them with me as well really helped to move things along."
[19:36:24] <@Ultimate> "When did they invite you to join their group?" Aang wanted to know. "Shortly after I explained to them the whole concept of chi-blocking," Ty Lee told him. "At first, they just grew excited and asked to be taught a thing or two in the art. But the day after that, I guess they had talked it over because they asked if I would like to join their group. They said I'd be a very valuable asset. So I said yes and boy am I glad I made that decision."
[19:50:53] <@KataraFanboy> "Well, we're certainly happy you made it to the warriors," Katara said. "You are indeed a valuable asset for them. Not that they weren't strong already, but you made them all the stronger." Aang nodded in agreement. "Thanks guys," Ty Lee said, and the group continued to eat.
[19:56:50] <@Ultimate> Katara then thought about Ty Lee's natural acrobatic skill and how awe-inspiring her grace and talents were. "I've always been meaning to ask you, but how did you become such a master acrobat? Did you learn from your days traveling with the circus?" Ty Lee shook her head, saying, "Well, I did refine my skills a bit more there, but I had been practicing long before that."
[22:21:27] <@AangPlushie> "How long?" Aang asked. "Well," Ty Lee answered, "all the way back to when I was just five years old. When I was struggling to get an identity in my family...I decided to try out with acrobat skills. I just kept practicing every day, and when I ran away a few years later, that's when I took a step up in going to the circus. Soon, I became a star acrobat."
[22:26:20] <@KataraPlushie> "I'm willing to bet that you're the best acrobat there is out there," Katara said. "And I'm being serious. No one can match your agility." Ty Lee blushed slightly at this. "Aw, well, thank you. I do have to say, I take pride in being an acrobat." Even if it didn't win me much attention from my parents, she thought to herself, but kept from voicing.
[22:28:38] <@AangPlushie> "Do you think you might ever go back to the circus some day?" Aang asked. "If even for just one performance? I mean, I know you likely won't go back full-time now." The Kyoshi Warrior though about this for a moment. "Hmmm...maybe just one time. Some days, I do think about the circus, and I do miss it. Not that I don't love being here...but sometimes, I do think what it would be like to return to the circus, if just once."
[22:32:28] <@KataraPlushie> "Then if you're really adament about revisiting the circus, even if just for a little while," Katara prompted her, "I think you should go for it. You don't want to look back and regret not doing it. I'm sure the warriors would understand if you took time off to pursue that." "It won't be that easy, getting them to take back for a one-time thing," Ty Lee said hesitantly. "But maybe I will anyway..."
[22:34:27] <@AangPlushie> "It's not like you left them on bad terms or anything," Aang said. "I'm sure they would accept you back for just one performance. You'll never know if you don't try to ask them." "True," Ty Lee said. "Yeah...you know what, as long as Suki clears it, I'll go back and ask them for one more performance, just for old time's sake."
[22:40:04] <@KataraPlushie> "If you do go back for a performance, we'd love to see it," Katara told her. "Perhaps you could send us word if you are in a show and, if our schedules allow, we could go see it." "Yeah, that'd be pretty fun," Aang agreed. "Really?" Ty Lee asked. "Well, if all works out well and I can go back, then sure I'll be sure to send you the word."
[22:41:55] <@AangPlushie> "I look forward to it," Aang said. "I've never been to a circus before," Katara added, "So it would be really cool to see." "It's all sorts of fun, Katara!" Ty Lee said. "Animals, other acrobats...there's lots to see and enjoy. Sometimes when I was waiting for my act, I'd peek in on the performances. It really is fun."
[22:48:33] <@KataraPlushie> As the meal went on, Katara remembered Ty Lee saying that she had been to Ember Island at least twice. "You said you've been to Ember Island a few times and really liked it, huh?" Ty Lee nodded and said, "The first time especially was a very fulfilling experience. Really opened my eyes to a few things about my friends. You guys hid out there, right? Any memorable experiences or eye-openers for you?"
[22:50:19] <@AangPlushie> "Well, we did see a play about ourselves," Katara said. Aang grew uncomfortable at these words, knowing what happened that night. He could still feel the sting of Katara's words and his apparent stupidity. "It was pretty dumb," Katara continued. "They made me out to be some overemotional freak, Aang was played by a woman...it was just stupid."
[22:55:22] <@KataraPlushie> "Ah... I've never seen a play put on by the Ember Island Players, but I did here about that one and a few others. They're supposed to be nightmarish to watch and from what you've said, that seems to be true," Ty Lee replied. "But other than that, being there is supposed to be somewhat magical. Smooths out the ragged edges, they say..."
[22:57:41] <@AangPlushie> "Well, on Ember Island is where I did finally forgive Zuko," Katara said. "So...I guess it did help in some way." Ty Lee nodded happily. "You're right...see? It does work magic." The meal continued as the group came down to the final bites of their dishes. They had enjoyed them heartily, all that was left to do was finish.
[23:01:54] <@KataraPlushie> Having finished, they called over the waitress who cleared the table and soon came back with the bill which was, Ty Lee had said, indeed reasonable. After they had each paid, they stepped out once again into the crisp autumn air. "So, do you guys want to go back up the mountain or explore someplace else?" Ty Lee asked them.
[23:04:28] <@AangPlushie> Katara sighed heavily. /I think it's due time./ "Aang, wait here," the waterbender said to her boyfriend. "Ty Lee...let's get somewhere to ourselves. It's time to talk." Ty Lee's eyes shifted curiously. "Mmm...I guess I know what now..." The two then walked towards a quiet area somewhat outside the village, and leaned up against a building. "Go ahead, Katara...what is it that you want to ask exactly?"
[23:08:48] <@KataraPlushie> "It's what I had asked you earlier, about how you and Azula stuck by one another for all those years when you have very little in common as far as personalities go," Katara told her with a sigh. "You seemed to get a little upset when I asked about that. I don't mean to intrude or anything, but if there's anything you want to tell me, you can. Because really, is anything bothering you?"
[23:11:40] <@AangPlushie> Ty Lee gave a somber sigh. "Katara...like I said...it's a long story." Her mind crafted a flashback to her younger days, when she was still a little girl. "Our friendship started out like anything normal. Along with Mai, we met at the Royal Fire Academy for Girls. We started out as typical young friends...we talked, we hung out a little bit, even the occasional sleepover...it was just a typical close friendship. When I ran away from home...I thought that was it for us as friends. I lost contact with her. I didn't know what to expect.."
[23:15:13] <@KataraPlushie> "But you two somehow met up again...," Katara said slowly. Ty Lee nodded as she traced her finger along the wall idly. "Then one day she just... showed up at the circus. I couldn't believe my eyes at first - my old friend had actually found me and come to see me. I was very excited, but things got a little, well, shaky..."(cont'd)
[23:17:04] <@KataraPlushie> "She invited me to join her mission in hunting down Zuko and his uncle, Iroh. But I wasn't ready to just drop everything I had and leave. So I turned down her offer as nicely as I could, saying I was happy with the life I had. She said she understood, but I don't think she did. If she had, she would have simply left. Instead, she requested to see my performance that evening."
[23:19:47] <@AangPlushie> "Then...why did you join her?" Katara asked, feeling confused. "That's where this next part kicks in..." Ty Lee began somberly. "My act came up...I did my usual tightrope work. Next thing I hear..Azula's talking to the ringmaster. She says it would be more exciting if the safety net below me was set on fire...and so, he set it on fire. My fear spiked...but that wasn't the worst of it." Katara began to grow more of a sympathetic look and said, "What next?" (cont'd)
[23:22:02] <@AangPlushie> "She..." A tear formed in her eyes. /I was so scared.../ "She...wanted all the animals released. I had to perform with dangerous animals trying to kill me! I barely made it out alive! It was clear what she was saying....'Either join me or you're dead!' I had to...I didn't want to die." She cried some more at these words. Katara's look grew more sympathetic for her friend, but confusion remained on her part. "I understand...but if you didn't really want to join her...why did you still try and hurt us all those times?"
[23:25:27] <@KataraPlushie> "I-I couldn't defy Azula... I realize now that trying to harm you guys was very wrong of me, but at that time, I would have never thought to go against Azula," Ty Lee explained miserably. "She had me wrapped around her finger... Who knows what consequences there would have been if I had gone against her..."(cont'd)
[23:27:53] <@KataraPlushie> Katara began to understand just how much power and influence Azula had had over her two friends and laid a hand on her friend's shoulder. "It just seemed that a friendship that had once been real had turned into one based on obeying orders lest I want to get hurt," Ty Lee confessed. "Then again, maybe it had always been that way. I had always agreed to whatever Azula ordered of me."
[23:30:25] <@AangPlushie> "And that includes coming after us..." Katara whispered. Ty Lee nodded, some tears dripping down her cheeks. "You have to believe me, Katara...I never really wanted to hurt you guys...I just...gave in to Azula." She sniffled in between sentences. "I always knew there was something to like about you, even when we were on opposite sides...all I wish...was that you didn't call me a circus freak...Katara....that hurt."
[23:35:49] <@KataraPlushie> Katara sighed heavily, thinking about how she had nastily made that comment during the battle outside Ba Sing Se. "I'm so sorry for calling you that... I don't know what came over me. I just saw you as the enemy that time and seeing you in a helpless position like that, I took it as a chance to lob an insult at you. I feel terrible, though. I should've thought before I spoke..."
[23:38:21] <@AangPlushie> "It was such a hard comment on me..." Ty Lee said. "I just...the circus made me unique....and you lobbed an insult at me regarding it. That really hurt...but...I guess I shouldn't call you out on it...since I did my fair share of hurting you guys as well." She continued to shake and cry at some of the old memories, kneeling down and burying her head into her kimono. "Azula was so scary...she may not have deserved her fall from sanity...but I...that was the hardest time of my life."
[23:44:01] <@KataraPlushie> Katara frowned and knelt down beside her friend, slowly pulling her into a hug. "I can only imagine what that fear must have been like... But it's all over now... You found your courage to free yourself from her grasp and now you have the power to make your own decisions as you were always meant to do. Maybe you can't start over from that day. But you have a whole life ahead of you."
[07:45:35] <@AangPlushie> Ty Lee wrapped her arms around Katara, burying her head into the waterbender's shoulder. "Listen...I hope you know...just how sorry I am...I never wanted to turn out evil to you all...I'm not," she continued to speak tearfully. "I just let myself be driven by fear..I'm so sorry. I mean it."
[07:48:53] <@KataraPlushie> "I know you do," Katara assured her softly. "And I've long since forgiven you. Don't worry, you have nothing to worry about anymore. The fact is now that you have good friends now who would never try to control you through fear and the rest is history." She continued to hold the warrior tight for several moments.
[07:52:29] <@AangPlushie> Ty Lee felt a sense of happiness from Katara, holding her while the waterbender did. "It was a long, difficult ride..." She said as she sniffled..."I'm so glad it's over...I never want to go through that again." "You won't have to," Katara said with a re-assuring smile. "Aang, Sokka, Toph, Suki, the other warriors and I...we're your friends now...and you still have Zuko and Mai. We'll never try to control you. We all care about you, Ty Lee."
[07:56:12] <@KataraPlushie> Ty Lee smiled at these last words, wiping some of the stray tears away. "I care about all of you, too, and I know you would never take advantage of me. Thank you, Katara, for all that you said and for hearing me out. It feels good to reach out to someone." She embraced her again, this time in gratitude.
[08:00:16] <@AangPlushie> Katara hugged Ty Lee back warmly. "You're very much welcome...we all look out and care for one another," she then said. "That's always been our group, ever since we started...and you're a part of it now...and you always will be. We're certainly glad you're here...you're a kind, caring, likable girl...and not even Azula can change that."
[08:04:14] <@KataraPlushie> Ty Lee was flattered by these kind words and sighed happily, her mind now at rest after hearing these reassurances. She felt so lucky to be a part of Team Avatar, surrounded by caring friends. After a while, they broke away. Katara looked at her and asked, "Are you feeling okay now?"
[08:07:43] <@AangPlushie> Ty Lee wiped away a stray tear of happiness that fell down her face. "I am," she then said. Katara smiled brightly before saying, "I'm sorry I brought this up with you...it was a challenging time for you as anyone can tell...some tough memories." Ty Lee shrugged it off. "It's okay...I really needed to get it off my chest too. My past has bothered me for some time, and to have someone to talk about it with...I needed it. It really helped clear my mind...so actually, I should be thanking you for this talk."
[08:11:36] <@KataraPlushie> "What are friends for?" Katara replied cheerfully. "If you ever have a problem, you can just come to me." She received a thank you and a bow from Ty Lee before remembering about Aang. "In any case, I guess we should go back to where Aang is. He's probably wondering what's up with us."
[08:13:41] <@AangPlushie> "Yeah," Ty Lee said. "It's been a while...but, you go on without me. I think I messed up my make-up by doing all that crying...I'll be right back." Katara nodded, and the two girls went their separate ways for the time being. The waterbender returned to her boyfriend, who was just coming back from a short walk. "Hey again," Aang said to Katara. "How was your talk with her?"
[08:17:44] <@KataraPlushie> "Oh it went over pretty well," Katara replied. "She just needed to get some things off her mind and the assurance that we and the rest of Team Avatar would stand by her as friends. So I told her that of course we would. She's a part of our team now, regardless of the past."
[08:20:14] <@AangPlushie> "That's good to hear," Aang answered. "Where did she go, though?" "Well, this was a hard discussion for her," Katara answered, "and she cried quite a bit, so...she had to go fix her face paint. She'll be back soon, and then we can continue on with the day." "Good," Aang replied with a nod. He then walked up closer to Katara and gave her a kiss on the cheek. "You're really good at this stuff," he then said.
[19:16:26] <@Ultimate> Katara blushed and simply said, "Aw, well, I just try to help a friend in need. It bothered me how she grew closed-off back there because that's just not her. But I don't think she'll have anything to worry about anymore." They stood in the shade of the restaurant, waiting for Ty Lee to return. Several minutes later, the warrior returned, looking as good as new.
[19:19:53] <@KataraFanboy> "Welcome back," Aang said to the returning warrior. "Thanks," Ty Lee said. "So...I was thinking...you've never really seen our dojo, have you?" The each of them shook their head. "Well, not besides sitting in there for a minute earlier," Katara said. "Well, come on then!" Ty Lee said. "I'll show you two around."
[19:24:15] <@Ultimate> She turned and waved a hand, motioning them to follow. "It may not look like much at first, but there's more to it than you may initially think," she explained to them as they made the walk back to the outskirts of the village. They soon arrived at the dojo, the sounds from inside indicating that a practice was going on. "Don't worry about disrupting them too much," she said. "They won't mind us looking around."
[19:26:56] <@KataraFanboy> As the three entered, a couple of the warriors said hi to their friend. "Hey there, Ty Lee!" Ty Lee waved back. "Hey, girls! Don't mind us...I'm just showing Aang and Katara around." The warriors then turned in some shock. "Oh wow, the Avatar is here!" "Not to mention, his girlfriend!" They stood in admiration of the two.
[19:32:12] <@Ultimate> The couple smiled at the warriors and waved before the girls resumed their training. Ty Lee turned to them and said, "Well, as you know, this is the main room and the largest in the dojo. We do almost everything in here, training, meetings, even meditation sometimes. But off to the side," she walked over to the left side, "are rooms for equipment, dressing, weapons, anything you need."
[19:36:29] <@KataraFanboy> The couple looked in at the closet, Katara even feeling the dresses for herself. "They're really comfortable," she said. "What are they made of?" Ty Lee tried to think of it. "I'm not entirely sure, but it is pretty soft." "I didn't know you meditated," Aang added. "Sometimes, if it's going to be a hard session," Ty Lee explained, "Suki has us meditate for a few minutes at the start, so we can mentally prepare ourselves."
[19:41:12] <@Ultimate> "That's a great practice," Aang replied with an approving smile, knowing how effective the method could be. Katara looked at the vats of face-paint on a large countertop and the mirror propped up against the wall. "Oh yeah, that's where I was earlier when you guys came, putting on my make-up," said Ty Lee. "For decades, the warriors have applied it in the same style as now. It's supposed to intimidate opponents and pay tribute to Kyoshi."
[19:46:07] <@KataraFanboy> "I can tell," Aang said, recalling that Kyoshi had worn the same face paint herself. "What exactly are the fans for?" The Avatar then asked. "Oh," Ty Lee said. "You guys will like this. When we wield these fans, we use these to turn opponents' moves against them. Sound familiar?" Katara thought about it for a second before it came to mind. "That's a fundamental principle in waterbending!" "You got it," Ty Lee replied. "Heh, no wonder why we got along so easy," Katara added, "you guys are just like waterbenders, without the bending."
[19:52:34] <@Ultimate> Ty Lee laughed and said, "Yeah, maybe! But the fans really are an effective weapon, even if they don't look as strong or dangerous as spears or broadswords. Although we also use katanas which I'll show you in the other room." Katara nodded, impressed. "I've never seen you use sword-like weapons before." "We don't use them often," Ty Lee told her. "More like a last resort when we turn to more offensive fighting."
[19:55:30] <@KataraFanboy> "I can't imagine you need weapons too much," Katara said, "Since your strongest weapons are your fingers," she added with a laugh. "That may be true," Ty Lee responded with a chuckle, "But, sometimes, I do have to turn to weaponry. Occasionally, we get someone who can move quick and can dodge chi-blocking jabs. So, the fans and katanas can come in handy. Now then, I'll show you the medical ward." The group left the equipment room and made their way across the dojo.
[08:14] <@Ultimate> Ty Lee released the latch of a door across the room and pushed it open, allowing them to enter the ward. The room was quite large with a few beds situated at the back of the room and counters and cabinets with various tonics, herbs and medical equipment. "Thankfully serious injuries don't happen too often during training," said Ty Lee. "But every now and then there will be an accident and it's best to be prepared."
[08:17] <@KataraFanboy> "How often have you had to use it?" Aang asked. "Thankfully, not too much," Ty Lee answered. "We had an accident a few weeks ago when one of the girls was hit by a fan by mistake. However, it really wasn't that big of a deal. We haven't really had a serious injury. Now that the waterbenders moved from the North Pole, we've been trying to see if we can get a healer up here to work in this ward when needed."
[08:21] <@Ultimate> "Hm, that might be possible...," Katara mulled over this possibility. "I'll talk to Master Pakku and see if he's willing to spare a healer or two to aid you guys here on the island." "Really?" Ty Lee asked. "Oh, if you can talk to him and make arrangements for that, that would be great! It's always good to have an extra set of hands to help." "I'm sure he'll say yes," Katara replied, "since we have so many down there as it is."
[08:27] <@KataraFanboy> "I wonder how they used this place while the warriors were gone," Aang said quietly to himself. "I think Oyaji said he used it as a hospital or something," Ty Lee answered, hearing the Avatar's words. "They utilized the medical ward mostly and worked to heal everyone as best they could." "It was so hard to imagine this island without the Kyoshi Warriors around..." Katara mused. "It's like being at the South Pole and there's no snow and ice."
[08:32] <@Ultimate> Ty Lee chuckled a bit, saying, "Yeah, it really is. The Kyoshi Warriors have always been a huge part of this island's identity, so to have them absent last spring, I think it was, must have been a change. I remember being told that after they left, many reinforcements were put in their place to guard against outside attacks. It was quite a festivity when the group came back here in one piece."
[08:38] <@KataraFanboy> "It must have been uplifting for the island when their guardians returned," Katara said. "What was the celebration like?" Ty Lee flashed back to the moments after the return. "Well, everyone was cheering for us quite a bit. I later found out that no one knew exactly what happened to everyone...all they had heard were rumors of an 'incident' and that it led to the fall of Ba Sing Se.
[08:38] <@KataraFanboy> Suki explained everything, and also helped me move forward with the island's people, because at first, when they heard about my role, they didn't trust me."
[08:42] <@Ultimate> The couple nodded, understanding why this would be so, and listened intently. "Gradually, though, the villagers began to embrace me and shook off any previous notions given my background and past. I really owe Suki for helping them along. There was an assembly at the main square, wtih speeches given praising the warriors' heroic deeds and they officially welcomed me into the group there, too."
[08:47] <@KataraFanboy> "It's great to hear that Suki was very understanding and helpful," Katara said. "I know," the warrior replied, "Without her, I don't think I'd be a Kyoshi Warrior today, because of the trust issues prior to her talking." She continued to muse over some of her regretted past and sighed sadly. "All that I did...and she still trusted me."
[08:51] <@Ultimate> Katara walked over to the disheartened warrior and put an arm around her shoulder. "Because she saw the goodness in you and that outshone all the rest. I know she forgave you, but it still seems like you have to forgive yourself for the past." She chanced a small smile to show her friend that everything was okay now. Seeing this, Ty Lee took a deep breath, saying, "You're right... I can't dwell on these things."
[08:55] <@KataraFanboy> Aang walked over to the two and told Ty Lee, "Monk Gyatso always told me that we can't concern ourselves with what was, but we must act on what is. The past years are gone, and here's what you have now. Good friends, and this position." Ty Lee smiled, thinking about her present. Her past times were gone now, she had a lot to enjoy at that moment. "Thanks, you two."
[08:58] <@Ultimate> They both beamed at her and the warrior straightened up, feeling more confident and self-assured. After surveying the room for a moment, she said, "Well, I don't think there's much more to see of the care unit. How about I show you the room where we stash our weapons?" The couple nodded and followed her out the door to another room.
[09:45] <@KataraFanboy_> Ty Lee opened the door, and there they saw the large storage of weaponry: Several fans and katanas lined the small closet, enough to ensure that no Kyoshi Warrior would ever be without a weapon when it came down to it. "We have craftsmen who helped make these," Ty Lee explained. "They did quite a bit as you can tell."
[09:50] <@Ultimate> "They certainly do a fine job," Katara observed as she looked at the racks of metal fans and katanas. "Indeed, their work is quite impressive. They also designed the shields as well," Ty Lee stated, holding up a round metal shield. She placed it down and picked up a katana in its sheath. "I'm still learning how to handle this perfectly."
[09:52] <@KataraFanboy> "Hopefully you won't have to turn it to much," Katara said. "Unfortunately, I really can't help you too much there. As good a bender as I am, I never really felt like I could do much non-bendng combat. I always make sure I have water on me at all times in case I do run into issues."
[09:55] <@Ultimate> "I see... I hope, too, that I won't have to resort to this too much. I prefer fighting hands-free with chi blocking. It's almost like second-nature to me," Ty Lee said. "Having to drag out a weapon isn't really my forte."
[09:19:33] <KataraFanboy> "Getting used to all-new fighting styles is challenging," Aang said. "You just have to keep practicing with them, though. It's like me with all the bending forms...especially earthbending. Over time, you pick up the skills and then you're able to work like a master. It just takes time, practice and patience."
[10:02:04] <@KataraPlushie> "I guess you're right," Ty Lee said, brightening a bit. "But chi-blocking will always be my go-to fighting style." "Do you guys use any other weapons?" Katara asked, surveying the room. "Not really," Ty Lee told her. "Suki has always said that the fewer weapons you have at your disposal, the better off you'll be because you won't waste time deciding which ones to use."
[10:04:17] <@AangPlushie> "Good point," Aang said. "Decision time sometimes seems a little tougher for me because I have all four of the bending styles to deal with. I couldn't imagine having to deal with a weapon on top of all that." They finished their surveying of the weapon room and returned to the main area of the dojo. "So, anything else you want to show us?" Katara asked of the warrior.
[10:08:49] <@KataraPlushie> Ty Lee looked around the room and said, "Hm... I don't think there's much else to show you in here, but I can show you out back. It's very cool - there's a little grassy area behind the dojo with a koi pond and stepping stones. Sometimes the warriors like to go out back there to relax, especially if training is pretty intense that day. I'll show you." She motioned for them to follow and headed off.
[10:11:58] <@AangPlushie> The three made their way out of the dojo and around the building, reaching the area in a few seconds. Aang and Katara looked at the little pond admirably, watching all the small koifish swim around quietly. Aang could feel the tranquility around the area. "It's a perfect relaxation place."
[10:18:27] <@KataraPlushie> "It really is. I try to come out here as often as I can," Ty Lee said, taking in a deep breath and closing her eyes blissfully. "It's nice and shady in the summertime, too." Hedges surrounded the area and stone slabs stood throughout the garden like benches.
[10:22:20] <@AangPlushie> Aang and Katara looked around the small relaxation area. "I really like this little place," Katara said. "Maybe next time we're on the island," Aang added, "I could come here in the morning and do some meditiation...if that's not a problem with the Kyoshi Warriors." Ty Lee shook her head but still smiled. "It's not...don't worry," she assured her. Aang then added to Katara, "You're welcome to come as well if you want."
[10:26:35] <@KataraPlushie> "I wouldn't want to be a disturbance while you were meditating," Katara replied, but Aang merely shook his head, saying, "It's okay, you wouldn't be. You could even try along with me." Katara smiled and said, "Heh, yeah maybe I could try. Okay, I'll come along. Thanks for showing us this little place," she told Ty Lee who said, "My pleasure."
[17:38:56] <@KataraFanboy> The three left the dojo behind. However, in her mind, Katara was hatching up a new plan for fun. She decided to take Aang aside to tell him. "Psst," the waterbender whispered quietly to the Avatar. "You want to mess around with her a little?" She had a smirk on her face as if she was planning something. "What do you mean?" Aang whispered back. "See that clearing up in the mountain there? Let's get up there, and engage her in a bit of play-fight. Help me out...and I'm going to be bring her down, if you know what I mean," she finished with a quiet chuckle. "Interesting..." Aang said, still whispering.
[17:43:03] <@Ultimate> Ty Lee noticed the two hanging back a bit and titled her head in curiosity. "What are you guys up to?" she asked. Katara and Aang caught up with the warrior and she casually said, "Nothing much. I was wondering, though, if we could go back up the mountain. I think I see a little place where we can veg out a bit." She pointed upward to where the clearing was. Ty Lee followed her finger and said, "Oh sure!"
[17:48:07] <@KataraFanboy> The three began their hike up the mountain for the second time that day, but this time, there were different plans, unbeknownst to the Kyoshi Warrior. /You'd better hope that training has paid off, Ty Lee.../ Katara thought to herself. The scene again was quiet ant tranquil. "So, what exactly is the deal here?" Aang whispered to Katara. "When we get to the clearing, you're going to take off in flight," Katara began, "and then, while she's distracted in watching it, I'll try to tackle her. You come in, and it's a fun time."
[17:54:02] <@Ultimate> "Alright," he agreed with a slightly mischievous smile. "Just as long as no one gets hurt from up here." "We'll be careful," Katara assured him. At long last, they reached the clearing; the air was cool and the space wide enough for a little action. For a moment, they simply stood there admiring the view until Katara looked over at Aang and gave a slight nod.
[17:55:34] <@KataraFanboy> "Hey Ty Lee," Aang said. "In your last letter to Katara, you said you wanted to watch me glide one day, right?" Ty Lee nodded and said, "Yeah, just to see what it's like." "Well, here's your chance," the Avatar answered. With that, he opened up his glider and took to the skies, catching Ty Lee's eyesight. (Cont'd)
[17:58:34] <@KataraFanboy> Katara watched Aang for a couple seconds, and then noticed Ty Lee was fully distracted by Aang's motions. With that, she ran up and grabbed Ty Lee from behind. "Hey!" Ty Lee shouted as Katara began to try to pull her to the ground. "Got you now!" Katara added. "You really think so?" Ty Lee answered, and she then broke away, doing cartwheels in the process. "Try again!" Katara smiled mischievously. "Oh, I will!" As the two girls started the run, Aang returned to the ground. "I should've known!" Ty Lee said, smiling. "Maybe I'll tackle you first!" "Try and get me," Aang answered, and he took off on an air scooter.
[18:04:03] <@Ultimate> Ty Lee sprinted towards the Avatar who was now whizzing by on the air scooter with Katara following her in hot pursuit. Aang was laughing and even stuck out his tongue at one point at the warrior who try to cut him off. "Haha, no one can beat an airbender!" he teased. When it seemed that she almost had him within her reach, Katara intervened, grabbing her shoulders and shouting, "Go, Aang, go!"
[18:09:09] <@KataraFanboy> Aang hopped off his air scooter and came towards the situation, trying to assist his girlfriend, but Ty Lee's acrobatic skills paid off and she slid away from the two. "Ha!" The Kyoshi Warrior yelled to the couple, and she came after them again. The Avatar re-formed his air scooter and got on the run. "Nah, I'm done with you..." Ty Lee said, turning her smirk to Katara. The waterbender pointed her hands to herself, grinning in the process. Ty Lee came at Katara, but Katara drew some water from her water skin and splashed Ty Lee with it and yelled, "Nice try!" Ty Lee was unphased however, and she ran towards her again.
[18:14:12] <@Ultimate> Katara backed up a few steps and tried to trip up the warrior by wrapping a water whip around her ankle, but Ty Lee smirked and somersaulted out of the way before she could be tripped. She tried a few strikes at Katara, but Katara was able to dodge them. "Gained a little experience, I see..." Ty Lee said, somewhat impressed, but then laughed. "But you and your boyfriend over there are no match for me."
[18:16:55] <@KataraFanboy> "We'll see about that," Katara replied, still smirking. She again deployed a water whip but Ty Lee dodged it a second time. "Aang, I could use some help!" Katara yelled. Without any further word, Aang got off his air scooter and came towards the situation. He grabbed hold of the warrior from behind, but she again broke free, and cartwheeled back over to Katara. Once there, she grabbed hold of her waterbending friend and tried to tackle her. "You're done!" The warrior proudly proclaimed. "You sure?" Katara asked, and then splashed water in her face and broke free again.
[18:21:51] <@Ultimate> Ty Lee reeled back for a moment then cleared the water off her face. "I bet my make-up's all smudged by now...," she remarked with a laugh. "But no matter - if it means defeating you two then so be it." At lightning speed, she leapt in Aang's direction. The Avatar was caught off-guard for a moment and she managed to grab him by the collar, but Katara swatted her hand away.
[18:25:00] <@KataraFanboy> Ty Lee then got her hold on Katara back, and again the waterbender splashed her. This time, Ty Lee's braid fell out of place, and even began to become undone, showing her longer hair. "You're going to pay for that!" Ty Lee said, still laughing even though her hair was becoming exposed. She danced back in Katara's direction and tried to grab hold of her. As she moved her hands in, Katara grasped them, and soon they were engaged in hand-to-hand "combat".
[18:28:55] <@Ultimate> The girls struggled one-on-one, each trying to wrestle the other to the ground, hands locked and trying to look determined even though they were both laughing. Both were dragged onto the ground and began rolling in the dirt. When it seemed that Ty Lee was about ready to pin Katara to the ground, Aang intervened and pulled her away.(cont'd)
[18:30:52] <@Ultimate> Ty Lee continued to struggle and eventually managed to brush him off and stand up. She turned sharply and grabbed Aang tighty in turn, trying to pin his hands behind his back. Katara stood up and seeing this, said with a laugh, "Hey, hands off," before going at her again.
[18:35:44] <@KataraFanboy> Katara joined the fracas, making all three involved in it. As they all entangled, Katara's hair became undone as Ty Lee grabbed her bun and undid it. Soon, all three of them fell to the ground in a ball, laughing all the way through the process, still grabbing onto one another and rolling in the dirt somewhat. Aang found himself on the bottom, Katara herself on top and Ty Lee stuck in the middle, her hair out of its braid for the first time in a long time.
[18:40:09] <@Ultimate> Ty Lee tried to keep Aang pinned onto the ground while Katara was trying to drag her off, but it was hard with all of them in a jumbled mess, hair obscuring the girls' vision and everyone on top of one another. Katara backed off Ty Lee, knowing she wasn't doing Aang any good with the extra weight on top of him.
[18:44:10] <@KataraFanboy> Eventually, the three came to a stop, all of them laughing at the light-hearted fight they just had. Soon, they all got up off the ground and brushed themselves off. "Well, looks like I won," Katara said. This garnered a playful shove from Ty Lee. "Oh, come on, you," the Kyoshi Warrior said. "I had you about three times. If it wasn't for Aang, I would have kicked your butt." Katara just chuckled. "Please..."
[18:48:37] <@Ultimate> "I think it's safe to say that I have claimed victory in this fight," Aang announced proudly, flashing one of his goofy grins. "I don't know about that either...," Ty Lee said, chuckling and smoothing out her uniform. "Especially when you weigh in the fact that I was outnumbered." "Whatever you say...," Katara said in a sing-song voice. The three surveyed one another for a moment and seeing the state they were in, broke out into laughter once more.
[18:52:44] <@KataraFanboy> After their laughter faded, Katara took notice of the warrior's long hair, which flowed even longer than the waterbender's. "Wow," Katara then remarked. "You know...cleaner of course, your long hair actually looks pretty cool." Ty Lee's hair flowed all the way down to her waist. "Thanks," the warrior responded, "But I always felt it was a bit too long for me, and that's why I have always worn it in a braid. "Oh, come on," Katara said. "I think it looks pretty. You should try and wear it down every once in a while."
[18:57:51] <@Ultimate> "Maybe," Ty Lee replied. "But it often falls over my face and that gets really annoying. Plus with training and all, it'd spell disaster. It would get caught on everything." She laughed in spite of herself. "But I'll see. Perhaps one day when I'm off and it's not too hot." Katara nodded and looked around for any fallen objects, although she didn't see any. "I hope none of us lost anything too important."
[19:02:58] <@KataraFanboy> "I wasn't carrying anything except my staff," Aang said, holding it in his hand. Ty Lee thought about it, and reallized she really didn't have much in her possession either. "I'm good...but I guess I have to fix my hair up and stuff." Katara nodded. "As do I...we're also going to need to clean up....but oh well, I think it was worth it." "Yeah, that was fun," Aang said. Ty Lee nodded in agreement. "Thanks for that, you two. It's always fun to...well, you know, have some fun!"
[19:06:43] <@Ultimate> "No problem. And yeah, it really is a blast," Katara agreed, beaming. "Nothing like a little fake fight among friends." "So now I know what you guys were talking about on our way out of the garden," Ty Lee said thoughtfully. "I guess I have to keep a closer eye on you both then," she added with a wink. "Well, I guess we better go get cleaned up. I hope no one we know bumps into us and sees us like this."
[19:11:13] <@KataraFanboy> "Yeah," Katara said. "It would be especially bad if Suki came back around right now and saw you like this." "Hey, we'll take fall for this," Aang added. "It was our idea." Katara nodded in agreement with her boyfriend as they continued to descend down the mountain. "Nice to fight for fun," Ty Lee said. "I got a bit sick of training fights and dealing with lawbreakers. It's nice to just fight with nothing on the line...except for bragging rights."
[19:16:40] <@Ultimate> "Brag about what?" Katara teased. "You have to admit, I was pretty good out there." Ty Lee shook her head, grinning and said, "Someday, you'll accept my victory over you. But yes, I'll admit that you really held your own out there. You're a pretty tough cookie." "Heh, well so are you," Katara returned the compliment. "Even with nothing on your hands, no weapons or anything."
[19:19:53] <@KataraFanboy> "Thanks," Ty Lee replied. "All those years of practicing in acrobatics have paid off, I guess." Katara then turned to Aang. "You did quite good yourself...kept Ty Lee distracted long enough for me to get her down." She then kissed her boyfriend on the cheek, causing the Avatar to blush. "Awww, thanks Katara," he then said. "Yeah...then you made a perfect target for a but-whooping!" Ty Lee added, to which Aang scoffed with a continuing smile.
[19:23:20] <@Ultimate> As they passed through the village, a few people turned to stare at them in their disheveled state, some gaping, others simply giving them strange looks. All three ignored the onlookers, however, and continued to laugh and walk on. "I think I'll go back to the dojo and wash up there," Ty Lee said. "Do you two want to come along or do you want to go back to your place of stay?"
[19:26:49] <@KataraFanboy> "We'll head back to our little house and clean up ourselves," Katara said, "Then we can meet back up and hang out for a little bit more." "Hey, that actually reminds me!" Ty Lee added. "Since Suki's not around, the other warriors were going to get some food and bring it back for dinner. Maybe you two can join us." The two nodded in agreement to this plan.
[18:34:12] <@KataraPlushie> "Okay, well I'll catch you two later," Ty Lee waved and bade them a cheerful goodbye. "Likewise," Katara said and she and Aang headed back to the house while Ty Lee made for the dojo. The afternoon had begun settling into twilight and the air became cooler. "That was a fun idea you had," Aang told her with a grin. "Sitting quietly and looking at the landscape is great, but it's nice to have a little action, even if it's just for good sport."
[18:37:09] <@AangPlushie> "Nothing wrong with a little bit of good sport," Katara said. "It's like Ty Lee mentioned, after all the real fighting we've done, to play around a bit is a nice relaxing feeling." She looked at her blue dress to see that it had gotten quite dirty. "I'm going to have to wash this..." she murmured to herself quietly, and then removed it. Forunately for her, she had a second set of clothing packed, featuring the longer dress she had worn back during the spring of the War. She placed that on over herself. "Been a while since I've worn this."
[18:47:49] <@KataraPlushie> Aang couldn't help but smile when he saw her wearing her old Water Tribe dress. "Well, it looks beautiful on you, like everything else does," he complimented her. She blushed at this and said as she was heading over to the bathroom to wash up, "You better put on something fresh yourself," eyeing the stains all over his clothes. In the bathroom, she quickly washed her face and fixed her hair.
[18:51:08] <@AangPlushie> Aang pulled out an orange and yellow half-undershirt that went under his more formal monk's clothing, and put that on in place of his dirty clothing. He then cleaned his face off and took a seat, just waiting for whenever him and Katara would be ready. All the meanwhile, back at the Kyoshi Warrior dojo, Ty Lee's fellow warriors saw her a mess and wondered what happened to her. "It was nothing....just a little play fight," she said. "Suki's going to kill you if she sees your clothes that dirty," one of the warriors said. "I'll explain it," Ty Lee added. "For now, I think I'll just fix up my hair and put my old Fire Nation clothes on."
[18:55:48] <@KataraPlushie> The Kyoshi Warriors exchanged a few curious looks, but merely shrugged it off. "Oh, and Aang and Katara will be joining us for dinner this evening," she told them before going into the closet with the warrior uniforms and dug up her old Fire Nation outfit from deep within the room. She quickly got dressed then headed off to wash off her smudged make-up and rebraid her hair.
[18:59:46] <@AangPlushie> Ty Lee re-appeared before her fellow warriors, back in her old look: The braided hair, red and pink clothing, and brown tights to cover her feet. "It's just like old times," one of the warriors remarked. "Careful with that," Ty Lee replied, "or I might attack you!" The girls laughed heartily. "Heh, last time we saw you in those clothes, you were blocking our chi," the second present warrior remarked. "Yeah...amazing how fast things changed," Ty Lee responded happily. "So...where are we going to get our food? Since Aang's joining us, we'll have to make sure we don't get all meat as well."
[19:07:14] <@KataraPlushie> "There's that good diner in the village square where we can always go get something. Or maybe even the market down by the shore," one of the warriors suggested. "There's always plenty there and fresh, too." "Sounds just fine," Ty Lee agreed. "I guess we better go then, so we don't keep Aang and Katara waiting here at the dojo for too long." She and the other warriors headed out to the forum while Aang and Katara were finishing up, looking presentable again.
[19:13:35] <@AangPlushie> The couple back down at their place of stay was finishing their prep. Katara restored her hair loopies to finish up her preparation, while Aang finished placing his fresh clothing on. "What do you think?" Katara asked her boyfriend. "Should we wait a few minutes, in case they're getting food now? Or should we just head up now?" Aang pondered this for a moment before saying, "I guess we can head up now. If they're not there, we'll wait."
[19:18:07] <@KataraPlushie> The two made their way out of the house, down the winding stone path and onto the streets of the village. Townspeople who were still outside going about their business and had seen them all a mess looked up as they passed, now nice and clean. In no time, they arrived at the dojo and indeed it was empty, so the two sat cross-legged on the floor and waited.
[19:22:15] <@AangPlushie> Down at the market, the three girls picked out the planned dinner. The two other warriors shopped for themselves, picking up some meats and desserts. Ty Lee took some fresh shrimp for herself and Katara, while grabbing plenty of steamed vegetables for Aang. After this was all completed, they made their way to the merchant. "That will all be nine silver pieces please," he said, and Ty Lee's fellow warriors covered it themselves. After their payment was done, the merchant sealed the food up and bagged it. "Have a good day now, girls," he added.
[19:28:38] <@KataraPlushie> "You, too," they said in unison before making their way back to the training center with all their packages. "It sounded like you had a lot of fun out there today," one of the warriors said to Ty Lee. "Or looked like it, rather. Lucky you... We were stuck inside doing training exercises all day. With Suki absent maybe we should've played hooky and joined you," she joked. Ty Lee laughed. "Well, I don't know about that, but yes, I had fun."
[19:33:56] <@AangPlushie> "Glad you enjoyed yourself," the warrior remarked. "Next time we get a day off like this, we should hang out." They continued their walk back to the dojo, exchanging some idle conversation along the way before returning, then seeing that Aang and Katara were already present. "Good, you two are here," Ty Lee said to them. "Well, look at this," Katara said, taking notice of Ty Lee's Fire Nation clothing. "Just like you used to be...back in the good old days," she added, laughing.
[19:43:20] <@KataraPlushie> Katara smiled then went over to help the Kyoshi Warriors unpack everything. "I hope you guys weren't waiting too long for us," Ty Lee said. Katara waved a hand in dismissal and replied, "Not to worry, we've only been here a few minutes." They laid out everything one by one on the floor while Ty Lee went to look for silverware.
[19:46:34] <@AangPlushie> The food was distributed amongst the group. Aang unwrapped a dish to see steamed vegetables and knew that was meant for him right off the bat. Katara took notice of a large dish of shrimp. "That's for you and Ty Lee to share," one of the warriors said. "Ah, very well," Katara replied. As they continued the distribution, Ty Lee returned with a few sets of silverware for them. One of the warriors then got up to take some plates.
[19:52:06] <@KataraPlushie> They all sat cross-legged on the floor as they dished out the food. "Sorry there are no tables or chairs," Ty Lee said sheepishly, but Aang reassured her it was fine and not the least bit uncomfortable. "So when are you guys expecting Suki to return?" he asked. "She said she'd be coming back later tonight," Ty Lee replied. "I can't wait to tell her about my day and to hear about hers."
[19:56:06] <@AangPlushie> "Oh, it's going to be one heck of a story to tell her," Katara said with a laugh. "Lots of fun times to discuss." "Wonder what she'll think of our playfight," Aang added. "I hope she won't mind...besides, I can tell her we were just practicing," Ty Lee replied cheerfully. "Practicing in taking down an opponent." All of the group chuckled. "Hey Aang," one of the warriors asked. "How does it feel being the only guy among us girls right now?"
[18:49:30] <@KataraPlushie> Aang chuckled slightly at this remark and replied, "To be honest, I don't mind too much. Especially after spending years living at the Southern Air Temple with only boys. Sometimes it's just nice to have a change." He grinned at this. The same warrior had an amused look on her face and said, "Well, that's good, but still, we'll try not to bore you with any 'girl talk'."
[18:53:03] <@AangPlushie> "Don't worry about it too much," Aang replied. "I've heard a lot of girl talk being around Katara, Toph and Suki a lot." The waterbender chuckled somewhat. "Yeah, you know...those two and I...though Toph never really was that much into girl talk."
[18:58:00] <@KataraPlushie> "Yeah, she's more of a tomboy. Funny, I'm like the complete opposite of her, being the more outgoing, cheerful type" Ty Lee said in an amused tone. "It's cool how you all became close friends even when some of you are complete opposites," one warrior commented. "Then again, I guess it's the same way with us. We're all pretty different in our own ways." This garnered nods of agreement from the other warriors.
[19:01:19] <@AangPlushie> "Everyone has their differences indeed," Aang noted. "But if there's one thing I have learned from my time in the world, it's that separation is an illusion. Just as there may be four separate nations, but we're all one large people. We're all parts of the same whole. So, even if we appear different, we're all still together in this. Even if you appear opposite to someone, you can still be friends and get along all the same."
[19:06:45] <@KataraPlushie> "That's true. You learned that from the guru, Pathik, right? I guess you took quite a few valuable lessons from that trip," said Katara. Aang nodded. "Even though I didn't learn how to master the Avatar State, which is why I went there in the first place, I learned plenty of life lessons."
[19:10:51] <@AangPlushie> "That's great that you got something out of it," Katara replied. "Separation is an illusion..." one of the warriors mused quietly, thinking about what the Avatar had mused. "It's not just the guru I've learned life lessons from over the years," Aang continued. "All of my past lives have also given me wisdom. Roku told me that friendships can transcend generations, for example. There's a lot to learn in life, especially being the Avatar."
[19:15:49] <@KataraPlushie> "I'll bet you're as wise as General Iroh," Ty Lee told him with a smile. "How is he, by the way? Still running that tea shop in Ba Sing Se?" "Yes, and it's a huge success, according to what Zuko told us last time. He said business is booming and the general is happy, running the shop and playing Pai Sho every day, just as he promised he'd be doing," Katara said, laughing a bit.
[19:19:46] <@AangPlushie> "That should be a next future stop for us," Aang suggested to his girlfriend. "We can see how Iroh's doing, and also the Earth King." "I heard he's feeling good about being back in power," Ty Lee said. "Also that he's more in on the Earth Kingdom's matters now that the Dai Li have been eliminated." "It's about time too," the Avatar said. "If we're going to move towards peace, we need his help as well."
[19:26:24] <@KataraPlushie> "It certainly wouldn't hurt to go away to Ba Sing Se for a while," Katara considered this. "Maybe in the upcoming months, if nothing too important arises, we can visit there for a while." "Speaking of vacations, how long are you two staying at Kyoshi Island?" one girl asked. "We planned to stay for a week and half or so," Aang replied. "It's already been four days since we arrived."
[19:29:50] <@AangPlushie> "It's the first real extended time we've spent on the island," Katara added. "We stayed here a couple of days during the War." One of the warriors spoke up. "I remember you two actually from your first visit. I didn't see you both as much, but I do recall. Aang...you were a lot different...you had those little girls chasing you." The Avatar chuckled. "Yeah...that was also when I used to ride the elephant koi." "There was a lot occurring that first time." "I wasn't a part of the group at the time," the second warrior said. "I didn't join the Kyoshi Warriors until three months ago."
19:35:52] <@KataraPlushie> "Yeah, and I don't think anyone here knew about chi blocking, much less how to actually do it," another spoke up, turning to face Ty Lee. "And at that time, we weren't too involved... We basically kept to ourselves on this island and stayed out of the war effort. When you guys came along, our attitude really changed. What use were we if we didn't step up and take action?"
[19:40:49] <@AangPlushie> "You certainly made your mark," Aang said, "Even if it wasn't completely seen." One of the warriors bowed their head to the Avatar. "Thank you very much, Avatar Aang." "Please," he said, shaking his hand. "You can just call me Aang." Katara then looked to the warriors and noticed she was quite young, younger than most of the warriors had appeared. "Hey there, if it's not too rude...may I ask how old you are?" The warrior responded warmly, "Oh, don't worry. I get that question a lot...probably because I'm only 11." "Oh, wow! 11 and already a Kyoshi Warrior," Katara replied. "Ty Lee actually mentioned you earlier. You must be an excellent fighter to be a Kyoshi Warrior this young."
[19:46:10] <@KataraPlushie> "Oh, well, I don't know...," the eleven year-old said bashfully before Ty Lee intervened and said, "She's excellent, but she just won't admit it." "You really have to be if you're part of the Kyoshi Warriors," Katara encouraged her. "Right. Most of us didn't officially join until we hit fourteen or something," another girl added.
[19:49:32] <@AangPlushie> "Even Suki didn't make it until she was thirteen," one of the warriors further expanded. "You're a really gifted young girl." "Being a bit humble isn't a bad thing," the Avatar said to the young warrior, "but you should give yourself some credit for making it to this point at a young age. Suki sees something in you, and well, it's hard to argue against that, am I right?" The little warrior nodded somewhat. "I guess..."
[17:27:04] <@KataraPlushie> Ty Lee shook her head good-naturedly at the girl's modesty, saying, "Someday, you'll come around." A silence fell over the group as they sat there in the dojo, the light fading as day receded. Katara pondered something and turned to Ty Lee, saying, "You have a charming personality and you're very pretty, too. Ever consider settling down? Surely there must be some guy you have your eye on." She gave her a wink.
[17:30:28] <@AangPlushie> Ty Lee's mind pondered over things for a second. "Well...I guess there is one guy I have taken a notice to. But I don't know...he really doesn't notice me. He looks cool, pretty strong...but I don't know."
[17:34:37] <@KataraPlushie> Katara nudged her side playfully and said, "Oh really? Do you know his name?" "I think his name is Aren...," Ty Lee told them, growing slightly shy. "But like I said, I'm unsure at this point." Katara laid a hand on her shoulder and said encouragingly, "Well, if it feels right, go for it. It's not always the easiest, but what have you got to lose?"
[17:36:09] <@AangPlushie> "All it takes is some talking to get things going," Aang advised her. "Just don't let it all be based on looks, however. The best love starts as a great friendship. That's what happened with Katara and I...we started out as friends, became close over time...and now we're a couple. Make sure you also build that emotional connection before anything."
17:40:41] <@KataraPlushie> "Oh yeah, that's more important than anything," Katara agreed. "Just talk to him, get to know him better." "I guess you're right," Ty Lee said, fiddling around with her chopsticks. "Maybe I will do that. Hopefully shyness won't take over" she added with a small smile. Katara returned the smile then said, "I never knew you to be really shy."
[17:43:38] <@AangPlushie> "Well, I was kind of shy in my early years," Ty Lee replied, "but, I have broken free around the girls. Problem is, I've never really talked to a guy for romantic purposes. I never, like, had a crush on Zuko. So...I'm kind of nervous about actually talking to Aren." Katara placed a hand on her shoulder. "Well, that's one advantage of a friendship starting first. Get comfortable around him, so shyness doesn't overtake you, if you are that worried."
[17:49:08] <@KataraPlushie> "The next time we run into one another on the streets or something, maybe I'll strike up a conversation," Ty Lee replied. "Thanks for the encouragement." "No problem," Katara told her. "And then you'll have to write to me and say how everything goes between you two." "Don't worry, I will," the warrior assured her.
[17:52:52] <@AangPlushie> As the dinner continued, Katara found herself fascinated with the eleven-year-old warrior, and having the common trait of being stuck with a huge responsibility from a young age, she couldn't help but wonder. As a result, she asked her, "Hey, do you feel any different being stuck with the responsibility of guarding an entire island at such a young age?"
17:57:04] <@KataraPlushie> The young girl, Astora, looked up and said, "Well, it is quite a responsibility and sometimes I do wonder if I will be able to handle the responsibilities that come. The other warriors have definitely been supportive, though, easing the pressure of the job. I just hope to be as efficient as possible and sharpen my skills as time goes on."
[17:59:48] <@AangPlushie> "I do kind of know what you mean," Katara replied. "When I was eight, I had to take on the responsibility of caring for my family after my mom died. It was a lot of work for me as well. But, like with you, I got support from my Gran-Gran and brother, and they helped ease me into the work. It's not quite like having to protect an island, but it was a large responsibility. I'll say this to you...you are a brave, young woman for taking this responsibility at such a young age."
[22:31:17] <@KataraPlushie> The young girl couldn't help but smile at her words. "Why, thank you. I do try my best... And I'm sorry to hear that. About your mom." Katara looked at her with compassion and a slight sadness at the reality. "It's okay," she said. Ty Lee flashed Katara a grin as if to say, Looks like you might've gotten through to her.
[22:35:26] <@AangPlushie> "I guess tomorrow is back to normal," another warrior, Mianna, intervened. "Yeah," Ty Lee added. "It was kind of a rare day off for us...but it was fun." "Me and Astora mostly did training spars," Mianna said. "Though we did relax to have lunch and hang out a little. Obviously, Ty Lee, it was a different story for you." Ty Lee chuckled, turning to Aang and Katara. "Yep...it was quite a day."
[22:39:14] <@KataraPlushie> "Heh, yeah... It was one of those crazy days that everyone needs once in a while," Katara added. "And we're more than happy that we got to spend the day with you today," she told the warrior. "I can say the same thing for you guys," Ty Lee replied. "Maybe we could do something else while you're still on the island. Maybe even Sokka and Suki would join us."
[22:42:00] <@AangPlushie> "Good luck getting Suki to stray too far into the 'fun zone'," Mianna said. "She might be somewhat lighthearted, but, I don't know if she'd be up for what you three did today with that play-fighting." "You never know," Astora replied. "To be honest, I think Suki could use a break from all the daily activies, and a play-fight could relieve that stress for her." "No, the one we'd have to worry about is my brother," Katara added with a laugh.
[22:46:09] <@KataraPlushie> "Exactly. Sokka can be a real stick in the mud when it comes to stepping out of his comfort zone and playing around like that," Aang said in amusement. "He has a goofy side to him, but when it comes to things like that, I don't know..." "Although if Suki agrees to a play-fight or something like that, maybe he'll be prompted to join us," Ty Lee pointed out.
[22:48:36] <@AangPlushie> "If we thought a three-way play-fight was crazy," Aang said, "Imagine five of us!" "I could see Sokka getting in on it if Suki goes. Those two are something else with each other," Katara added. "But...if he doesn't want to go...I think his little sister could...ahem, convince him..." the waterbender smirked. "I like the way you think," Ty Lee said to her waterbending friend.
[22:53:43] <@KataraPlushie> Katara smiled mischievously in response, saying, "Please, I know how to bend my brother to my will. But we should make plans for that. Just one more day of fun and games with one another." "And maybe we ourselves could get a little retreat and relax a little," another warrior, Shyla, suggested.
[22:58:34] <@AangPlushie> "Spirits know we need a retreat," Mianna replied. "It's become a little more harder to train lately now that we're being counted on more and more. The pressure's been on." "It comes with the position," Aang told them. "We were all saddled with the fate of the world. But nothing better than good friendship to help carry you through it all...and I can pick up that you warriors are close to one another."
[23:02:37] <@KataraPlushie> "We really are a close-knit group," Mianna said. "Unlike other groups, we're not really dragged down by conflict among the girls. Most of us have known one another for years, too." "It's always great to have close friends fighting alongside you," Katara said. "As along as you're not distracted from your duties, which I know you're not."
[23:05:30] <@AangPlushie> "Not at all," Ty Lee said. "Also, we make sure new girls like Astora fit right in." "I was really nervous the first day I got here," Astora recalled. "Being such a young girl, I was worried about all the older girls making fun of me, or trying to bully me out. But...they all took me in pretty quick, made sure I knew everything, and got me acquainted. It was a great feeling."
[23:09:57] <@KataraPlushie> "It's always great to feel welcome," said Aang. "But I don't think you had anything to fear joining this group. Behind their serious, driven attitudes are girls, who are kind and friendly." "And who would push around a girl as humble and nice as you?" Shyla questioned her. "Really, you're likable all around."
[23:13:34] <@AangPlushie> "Thanks, Shyla," the youngest warrior replied. "I think you all are really nice too. Especially you, Ty Lee. You really helped me a lot in coming into the group." "Oh, no problem," Ty Lee replied. "I'm always glad to help new warriors out, especially considering how foreign I was to the group, being from the Fire Nation and all."
[09:09:09] <@KataraPlushie> "I still remember you first joining. You guys know the story, right?" Shyla asked Katara and Aang, both nodding in reply. "I'm sorry that we didn't try to befriend you earlier in prison. You proved to be a great companion. All that time we wasted, sitting around and casting bitter glances at one another, not knowing we'd all be sitting having dinner together now."
[09:12:42] <@AP|ping> "Don't be sorry," Ty Lee replied. "I can understand how hard it was for you at first, after what I did to you girls the first time we met. Saying how you weren't pretty, blocking your chi and all that...I kind of deserved it." Shyla reached over and placed a hand on your shoulder. "No, you didn't...especially given your attitude. You're a sweet and nice girl, and we mistook you for a mean person."
[09:19:50] <@KataraPlushie> "It was kind of mean what I said to you. I hated that I was being so superficial," Ty Lee said regretfully. Shyla shrugged, saying, "Sometimes it can be hard not to be, but you definitely changed your attitude. And it's not that you were mean - moreso that you had the wrong intentions. But look, now you're here with us! It couldn't have ended in a better way."
[09:23:14] <@AangPlushie> "Sometimes it's hard to forgive," Aang said, "But when you work up enough courage to do so, and see how much you share, you can turn that small act of forgiveness into a great friendship." Katara nodded at this, and thought back to when she first met Ty Lee on friendly terms. "Yeah...Ty Lee...we certainly overcame a lot to forgive each other right after the War...and now look at us. Aang's right. A little forgiveness goes a long way."
[09:31:27] <@KataraPlushie> "That's clear," Ty Lee remarked cheerily. The dinner continued with some light conversation, asking how their friends around the world were doing and what the warriors planned to do now - they had hopes of helping in the global reconstruction effort. It was later in the evening with the sky growing darker that they finished and were ready to clear everything up.
[09:34:24] <@AangPlushie> The group put their plates down and wiped any stray bits of food from their faces. Soon, everyone began taking dishes and washing them, before returning them to their original places. "Well, I would say that that was a good dinner," Ty Lee finally spoke up. "The shrimp was excellent," Katara replied in agreement. "That's a pretty good market you guys have got here on the island."
[09:39:29] <@KataraPlushie> "I know, isn't it? Everything's so fresh. Shows you don't need to go to high end diner to enjoy good food," Ty Lee said. She cast her gaze out a window and said, "I don't know about you guys, but I may turn in early tonight. I'm pretty beat after today. Do you guys have anything planned for tonight?"
[09:44:22] <@AangPlushie> "Not really," Aang answered. "I guess we were just going to head back and wait for Sokka to return from his date." "By the way," Ty Lee began, "I'm glad to hear that Sokka's fine with you two dating now. I don't know why he had a problem in the first place, but from what I heard, it created tension amongst you guys." Katara nodded and said, "I know...but he saw how happy I was with Aang, and how trustworthy he really was, so he gave up his little problem."
[09:49:53] <@KataraPlushie> "I guess all's well that ends well then," the warrior stated happily. She then walked over and pulled the two into a tight squeeze. "You guys are the best. Thanks so much for this day." The two returned the hug with Katara saying, "Our pleasure," before they released their hold. "I guess we'll see you tomorrow or very soon at least."
[09:52:29] <@AangPlushie> "Well, of course we'll be back around to see you," Katara said. "You never know," Aang added, "Might be time for one more butt-whooping on hour behalf," he finished with a smirk. "Don't count on it," Ty Lee shot back with a smirk of her own. The two then began to walk away, before the warrior caught Katara's attention one more time. "Hey, Katara, could I just say one more thing to you, specifically?"
[09:55:52] <@KataraPlushie> The waterbender turned around, seeing Ty Lee approach her. "One second," she told Aang, who nodded in understanding, and headed in her direction. The two went off to the side and Katara looked at her quizically. "What is it you want to say?" she inquired.
[09:59:47] <@AangPlushie> Ty Lee placed her hands over Katara's. "I'd just like to say," the Kyoshi Warrior began, "Thanks for being there for me today. Telling anyone of my past is not an easy thing...and I just don't know who would believe me and listen to the entire thing. Nevertheless, you provided all that support for me...giving me that hug, assuring me that all of you cared about me...it was something I really needed to say, and also what I needed to hear." A stray tear dropped from her eye. "Thank you so much, Katara."
[10:07:35] <@KataraPlushie> Katara smiled compassionately at the young warrior, telling her, "Hey, what are friends for? I'm glad to hear that I was able to help you. I know things like that aren't easy to confess, but you were honest and now you know for sure that you are loved, by all of us."
[10:11:09] <@AangPlushie> Ty Lee could feel the warm honesty coming off Katara's words, thinking just how amazing it was for her to be standing in front of one of her worst enemies, now as a close friend. "I love all of you as well. This is nothing I could ever feel around Azula. After having a hard time growing up...to have all of you and also still have Zuko and Mai...it's a blessing, and something I will always be thankful for. There will never be enough thank yous in the world for all of you."
[10:17:31] <@KataraPlushie> "You don't need all those thank yous - sharing a strong friendship is all we need," Katara told her brightly and the two embraced. Before they parted ways, Katara assured her, "We're all here for you. Anything you need, you know you can count on us." "Thank you, Katara," Ty Lee replied, bowing slightly in gratitude.
[10:22:05] <@AangPlushie> "Anytime," Katara said. "We'll see you again tomorrow...now sleep well." "Pleasant dreams to you as well," Ty Lee told her waterbending friend, and they each moved their separate ways, feeling thankful for each other's friendship. When Katara returned to where her, Aang and Sokka were staying, the young Avatar asked his girlfriend, "So, what did you talk about?"
[10:25:26] <@KataraPlushie> "She thanked me for comforting her and listening to the story of her past earlier. She said she feels much more reassured that we're all here for her; I'm more than happy to hear that she's feeling better - I hate to see someone feeling so downcast," Katara filled him in.
[10:29:30] <@AangPlushie> "That's great to hear," Aang answered. "I know...a downbeat friend is not something you like to see. I'm glad you got through to her and convinced her that everything is fine. She's a really great person at heart, and fits right in with our group."
10:34:32] <@KataraPlushie> "I couldn't agree more," Katara said as they waved a final goodbye to the warriors and stepped out into the evening air. Night was beginning to dawn over the village, but people still went about their business. In no time, they arrived at their house, the windows still darkened as Sokka and Suki had yet to return.
[10:37:16] <@AangPlushie> With darkness settling in, Aang decided to light some candles with his firebending to provide light in the darkened house. "That should hold us over for what's left of the night," Aang told Katara. "Good," Katara whispered. With that, the two went over to the couch and took a seat. Katara moved closer to Aang and wrapped her arms around him, resting her head on his shoulder. "That was a lot of fun today," she whispered into his ear, then shifted over to kiss him softly.
[10:44:05] <@KataraPlushie> Aang returned the kiss then smiled and said, "I'll say. With all that's still going on in the world, it feels more than great to sit back and have a little fun." They sat in the firelit room, a peaceful sort of quiet settling over them as they simply watched day turn to night and waited their friends' return.
[22:07:17] <@BolinFanboy> As the quiet continued to settle, it came to a quick end when Sokka and Suki walked in the door, hands held. The Kyoshi Warrior leader laid her eyes on the couple. "Awwww, hey there lovebirds," she then teased to Aang and Katara. Sokka shook his head while giving an amused smile. "You two just /have/ to be cuddling whenever I see you," the tribal warrior added.
[22:09:18] <@Ultimate> "Oh, don't be such a prick," Katara teased, she and Aang rising from the couch and going over excitedly to greet the two. "I bet you and Suki did your fair share of cuddling today." All four exchange warm hugs and welcomes before settling down in the living room to go over the day's adventures.
[22:12:24] <@BolinFanboy> "Okay, so we did a little..." Sokka replied. "Just remember, you open the door to teasing if you continue this," Katara replied sarcastically. After a group laugh, Suki began the conversation. "So, what did you three do today?" "We had a very fun day," Aang responded. "We checked out the Kyoshi Shrine, hiked up the mountain, had some lunch...did a lot of hanging out."
[22:15:55] <@Ultimate> "And we had a little scuffle, too," Katara added. Sokka and Suki grew a little concerned for a moment, but she quickly said, "No, no, not a real fight, it was for fun. It was just me, Aang and Ty Lee roughing up each other a bit." "I hope no one got hurt or anything. Did you guys have fun with it?" Suki asked.
[22:17:57] <@BolinFanboy> "Lots of it," Katara replied happily. "It was all a for fun thing, something to help us get loose. No one got hurt...though mine and Ty Lee's hair each fell out of place." "Who won?" Sokka asked them with a chuckle. "I won," both the Avatar and the waterbender said, before turning to each other. "No, I won!" They each said at the same time. Sokka and Suki simply laughed at the two. "Okay, all that matters is that it was fun," Aang then said.
[22:20:58] <@Ultimate> "Okay, I'll go with that," the waterbender agreed, rolling her eyes in amusement. "Well, we can certainly see that," Suki said with a grin. "And then what did you guys do afterwards?" "Then we had dinner together with the rest of the Kyoshi Warriors, getting to know some of them better, including that newer warrior, Astora. It was a nice affair," Katara told her.
[22:23:13] <@BolinFanboy> "Astora," Suki began, "She is one heck of a fighter. Eleven years old...the girl won't exactly accept her talent, but she is something else for her age. I brought her in for a reason. Did she show you any moves?" Aang and Katara each shook their heads. "I'll tell you what, you two need to see them. Astora moves like she's been a Kyoshi Warrior for years."
[22:26:18] <@Ultimate> "Hm, then we should definitely head back there and check it out," Aang replied. "We're probably going back to the dojo soon to visit that little garden out back. I never knew it was there." "Oh yeah, that's been around for a while," Suki said. "Sorry I never got the chance to show any of you earlier. It's a great place to relax. But yes, I'll arrange for her to demonstrate a few things for you."
[22:28:21] <@BolinFanboy> Katara nodded and said, "It would be cool to see what she's made of. I'm sure she's a great fighter." "So, what about you guys?" Aang asked his friends. "How was that cruise out to Whale Tail?" Sokka replied, "It was pretty cool, actually. Aang, you would enjoy it. Nice views of the water, the island was quiet, nice and relaxing...it would be perfect for you."
[22:32:57] <@Ultimate> "Sounds like it," Aang said thoughtfully. "I assume you guys didn't decide to have any play fights while you were there." "Heh, well, no. We just strolled around the island, sat by the water, you know, went about our day in a civil manner," Sokka said, emphasizing "civil" and receiving a mock-disappointed head shake from Katara.
[08:50:03] <@AangPlushie> "Aang, you never saw Kyoshi's shrine prior to today, right?" Suki asked the Avatar before her, to which Aang responded with "Nope. I wasn't here when Katara and Sokka got to see it." "Did it feel, you know...interesting in any way to see all that a past life had done?" Suki queried him again. "It was pretty neat," Aang answered. "Almost like I could feel Avatar Kyoshi still amongst me. All her life, our shared past...right there before me."
[08:55:02] <@KataraPlushie> "Indeed, you really get that feeling standing there with all her relics. I'm glad it was an interesting experience for you," Suki told him. "Well, from the looks of it, it sounds like you guys had one heck of a day." "We sure did. And we were thinking that maybe later, before we leave, all five of us hang out together," Katara suggested to them.
[08:59:14] <@AangPlushie> "Not a bad idea at all," Suki answered. "I am trying to think, though, if there's really much else to show you guys around. Ty Lee may have very well covered the rest of the island with you two today." "Doesn't mean we can't do anything else," Katara told her back. "We can still have fun, still hang out around town...nothing's stopping us, right?"
[09:03:00] <@KataraPlushie> "I guess you're right," Suki said, brightening a little. "We don't have to go anywhere special, just kind of lounge around, have a little fun." "Yeah, but no fake battles for me," Sokka warned. Katara cast a glance at Aang as if to say, Always the stick in the mud. "Whatever you say..." she told him, holding her hands up in surrender.
[09:07:07] <@AangPlushie> "I wouldn't mind getting in on one of those," Suki said with a grin. "Besides, Ty Lee is somewhat of a bragger sometimes...I wouldn't mind taking her down a notch or two." "You should have heard her today, claiming she won the fight," Aang added on with a laugh. "Yep, see what I mean?" "Come on Sokka, now even your girlfriend wants to do this," Katara told her brother.
[09:11:06] <@KataraPlushie> Sokka looked over towards Suki who simply gave him a smug grin and asked, "What? You afraid I'll trump you?" Sokka pretended to look annoyed before smirking himself and saying, "I'd like to see you try." "I guess that's a challenge then. No backing out now," the warrior said in turn. "Okay, I guess we're in with that."
[09:15:34] <@AangPlushie> Katara and Aang turned to each other with a smile. "Sokka's mine," Katara whispered to her boyfriend. "What was that, sis?" Sokka asked after seeing Katara speak to Aang. "Oh, nothing!" Katara quickly responded. "I was just telling Aang....uhhh...what I wanted to do tomorrow!" Sokka simply shook his head. "Whatever you say. But, just let it be known that when we fight, you're looking at the winner."
[09:21:24] <@KataraPlushie> "Don't get so full of yourself now," Sokka said with a sly smile. "Pride comes before a fall." Katara rolled her eyes at him and said, "Well, we'll have to see in a few days then." She turned to Suki, asking, "How does your schedule look for the next week or so? I'm sure you have at least one day to spare and hang out, right?" Suki pondered this for a while before saying, "Yeah, I should be."
[17:34:39] <@KataraFanboy> "Sounds like a plan then," Katara said. "Glad you'll be able to join us." "Well, I have to if I want to show you all the /real/ way to fight," Suki said with a grin. "The /real/ way?" Aang scoffed. "Haven't even started a thing and already you're getting cocky." Suki just continued to smile confidently. "We'll see how you all handle my skills."
[17:39:32] <@Ultimate> Aang simply laughed and said, "I'm the Avatar - no one defeats the Avatar." Suki pretended to narrow her eyes menacingly which got the group laughing again. "So, anything else special that you did?" Sokka asked. Katara thought for a moment before saying, "I don't think there's much else to say, except we went to this restaurant in the village that I think you'd like a lot. But yeah, we're almost ready to turn in."
[17:42:42] <@KataraFanboy> "Restaurant in the villlage," the Kyoshi Warrior mused quietly. "I think I might know what you're talking about...Ty Lee loves it, and if she took you two there...is it that family-owned resturant?" Aang and Katara each nooded. "You betcha," Katara answered. "Ty Lee indeed told us that she loved it, and well, she turned out right. Ever been?" "No," Suki answered. "But yes, Ty Lee really likes that place. I'd try it, but I never really was one to eat out that much."
[17:46:38] <@Ultimate> "Well, we might just have to take you there to see for yourself how great it is," Katara said. "You'd really like it there, I know it." "Hm, maybe. I guess it's something worth checking out at some time," Suki replied. She looked at Sokka who shrugged and said, "Hey, as long as the food's good, I'm all for it."
[17:50:34] <@KataraFanboy> "All I ask is good meat," Sokka added. After shaking her head as if to say /Typical Sokka.../ Katara decided to respond with, "Well, I had a pork dish from there today, and I really enjoyed it, so I think you would too. Obviously, you don't have to get it, but it's a suggestion." Sokka simply nodded. "By the way," Aang resumed, "You guys said you had meals on that cruise boat, yes?"
[17:56:23] <@Ultimate> "Oh yes, and I have to say they were excellent. You should have seen the look on Sokka's face during the whole thing - he was practically in heaven," Suki recalled. "They served an excellent pot roast, what more can I say?" the warrior said breezily. "It was very good and the atmosphere was nice, too, being out on the water on a nice day. What more could you ask for?"
[18:02:06] <@KataraFanboy> Again Katara couldn't help but think /That's my brother for you.../ The group continued to sit around with the occasional conversation. "Suki, you didn't really meet Ty Lee on better terms until after the War, right?" Aang asked. "Yeah, that's right," Suki answered. "So, what was it like finally meeting her under such terms?" The Avatar again asked.
[18:07:15] <@Ultimate> "I have to say I was a little wary in her presence. I guess it was silly to act that way, but that's how I felt until she opened up to me, full out apologized and revealed a completely different side to her that I didn't know was there," Suki told them. "She shed a few tears as we were talking and taking in all that she was telling me and the fact that my fellow warriors trusted her, I quickly began warming up to her."
[18:10:50] <@KataraFanboy> "That's about exactly what happened between us earlier," Katara said. "I mean, I had accepted her months ago, but today, I couldn't help but feel some weariness. So, I talked to her, and she went the exact same way. She opened up about everything; her past, how Azula controlled her...so I hugged her and she cried into my shoulder while she apologized. I assured her though that everything would be fine, and how we were all her friends now."
[18:14:11] <@Ultimate> "That was nice of you to offer your support," Suki commented, smiling approvingly at her. "I guess even after all this time, she was still concerned. I'm glad you got through to her." "So am I," Katara agreed. "Now she knows she has nothing to worry about."
[18:17:34] <@KataraFanboy> "Exactly," Aang added. "I got to admit, I too feel kind of silly for being weary of her past," Katara added. "We knew she had changed her attitude, why did I even bring it up?" "It's okay," Sokka assured his sister. "We all are skeptical of people at points, it's human nature. Remember how suspicious I was of Aang on quite a few occasions?"
[18:20:58] <@Ultimate> "How could I forget?" Katara asked, remembering Sokka's suspicions all the way to when they had first met and not too long ago with her and Aang. "But you're right, it's completely natural. Though, I'm just glad we were all able to sort everything out in the end. Paranoia can bring someone down. Like in Azula's case..."
[18:24:14] <@KataraFanboy> "Maybe it wasn't so much paranoia as much as it was the actual events," Suki said. "I mean, she basically lost everything, the two people she trusted the most wound up backstabbing her." "Well, from what I heard through Zuko, she basically went ballistic on her palace staff," Katara added. "He had to re-hire all those servants and the palace guards that she banished because of her paranoia."
[18:32:23] <@Ultimate> "He also formally apologized to them when they were rehired, assuring them that nothing like that would ever happen again," Aang recalled. "I don't think too many of them sympathize Azula after that whole incident." "I wonder if things will turn around for her," Katara wondered. "Like they did for Zuko. I guess it's a matter of time." A silence fell over them as they pondered this possibility; outside the wind whistled.
[18:36:19] <@KataraFanboy> "Well, I think it would be best if we all call it a night," Aang suggested. "We all had a long day, and it's getting late." "I agree," Suki added. "Although that was a nice cruise, the travel between the islands kind of wore me out. Plus, I need to check with the rest of the warriors."
[18:40:34] <@Ultimate> "At this hour?" Katara asked curiously. Suki rose, shrugged her shoulders and said, "Well, I figure I might as well, make sure things ran smoothly today. It won't take me long, though - I'll be turning in soon like the rest of you." The others slowly got up, stretching and preparing to call an end to their day.
[18:44:00] <@KataraFanboy> "How long do you all have left here again?" Suki asked them all. "About a week," Sokka responded. "Dad didn't want us gone for too long, but, he did give us a generous amount of time." "Yep, we'll be here for a while," Katara assured her. "Hence why we asked you about joining us in hanging out." "Well, I'm glad...because that means I have this guy for a week more," Suki added, before throwing her arms around Sokka. "Look, it's the lovebirds!" Aang teased, earning a chuckle from Katara.
[18:48:00] <@Ultimate> Suki half-smiled half-scowled at the two, saying, "Uh no, I think that title goes to you two." "Heh, I concur," Sokka added, returning the embrace happily and giving her a kiss on the cheek. After a moment, they separated and Suki began heading for the front door, waving on her way out of the house.
[18:51:19] <@KataraFanboy> Katara again rolled her eyes amusingly at Sokka's words. "Well, while sometimes it does get annoying to hear it," Aang said to her, "it is true that we are lovebirds, aren't we?" The waterbender blushed. "Yep...we are," she then said with sheepish smile. "Well...if I am one lovebird...I'm glad you're flying right alongside me." She then hugged Aang tightly.
[18:56:09] <@Ultimate> Aang held her just as tightly while Sokka chuckled in the background. "I guess I'll be getting ready for bed now," he said with a smile and walked off, so the two were left alone, still wrapped up in their hug, relishing in that moment of peace.
[18:59:54] <@KataraFanboy> Aang rubbed Katara's back lightly during the embrace, then brushed his hand through her hair softly, prompting Katara to give a contented sigh. "You know, Aang," Katara said softly. "Mom used to rub my hair like that at night whenever I had trouble sleeping. It's a great habit you've developed as well...I hope you never drop it." Aang nodded somewhat and then gave Katara's hair a couple of more strokes before they separated.
[19:05:37] <@Ultimate> Aang smiled at her and said, "Your wish is my command." Katara looked at him lovingly and said, "You are so sweet, you know that?" before giving him a light kiss on the lips, causing his cheeks to turn red. "Stay that way..."
[19:07:47] <@KataraFanboy> "I always will," Aang told her. "Whatever you so desire." The Avatar couldn't be any happier with how his day was ending, being complimented and feeling that strong love between him and the waterbender. "Good night, Katara. I love you so much," he then said, continuing a loving smile.
[19:12:59] <@Ultimate> "I love you to the ends of the Earth," Katara told him, feeling exhilarated. "And good night to you, too. I shall see you in the morning." She began making her way out the living room through the now darkened allway, casting him one more smile on the way out.
[19:15:35] <@KataraFanboy> Aang gave a happy sigh as he departed to his room, thinking about both the great day he had and his true love, but mostly about the latter. Katara also felt great with how everything had gone. She had had a ton of fun, and again her love for Aang was re-affirmed. The waterbender couldn't be happier as she fell onto her bed and began to drift off to sleep. All in all, on the island that night, a sense of calm prevailed as everyone had turned out happy on that day.
- First and only roleplay set solely on Kyoshi Island.
- First and only roleplay to feature the entirety of the Kyoshi Warriors.
- Ty Lee refers back to "Return to Omashu" in talking about how Azula recruited her to her team.
- Katara makes her second visit to the Kyoshi Shrine; the first was in "Avatar Day". She also recalls the events of this visit in mentioning how Sokka touched the artifacts within despite Oyaji's requests to the contrary.
- Aang recalls his first visit to Kyoshi Island and his riding of the elephant koi from "The Warriors of Kyoshi".