*Legend of the Benders (Chapter 3)*
I’ve heard about people who were arrested for not paying each month. They were sent to a fire nation prison for years. I couldn’t go there. I wouldn’t survive a day.
They’ll knock on the door any second now. I won’t go. I would pretend that I’m not home, but it’s against the law to not be home on pay day when you’ve hadn’t paid yet.
I quickly run up and down the stairs, grabbing blankets, food, water and a journal I just found under a pile of clothes.
I hear a knock on the door. I work faster, putting everything I need in a backpack and look around for any other things I might need. I put medicine made from rare plants left by my father in the front zipper. I hear another knock. This time, louder. They then try to open the door, but it’s locked. Then I quickly put drawings and paintings in the backpack my mother made before she died. I hear a big thump from outside and I realize they are trying to break the door down. I don’t have enough time or space to take anything else with me.
I peak out the window next to the backdoor and see two more fire nation soldiers making sure no one tries to escape without paying. I’m trapped. There’s nothing else to do, but to tell them I don’t have enough to pay them.
The fire nation soldiers are still pounding on the door and now burning it down, trying to get in. I decide to hide, but before I can think of where to, the fire nation soldiers standing outside break down my front door.
I run to the stairs, but before I reach the first step a fire nation soldier pulls me back by my arm. The fire nation soldier holds out his hand expecting me to pay him. I open one of the drawers in the kitchen and pull out the rest of my money which isn’t even close to the amount of money I was supposed to pay them. I give him the money and he counts it making sure I gave him the right amount.
I stare at the fire nation soldier a couple feet behind him. He’s sitting on a chair in the living room. It only takes me a second to realize where I seen him before. At school. His name is Byron. He’s around my age and stands next to me in the beginner’s class. We don’t talk much except for when I’m having trouble with bending moves and he helps me. He looks bored and is not paying much attention to what’s going on.
The other fire nation soldier stops counting and looks at me, this time angry. “Where’s the rest?” “Hold on,” I say. I walk to the backdoor taking my backpack with me and knock. The fire nation soldiers that were still standing outside open the door. “I left some money in the shed,” I say. It’s raining outside. I walk to the shed in my backyard where the field was while the four fire nation soldiers walk a few feet behind me so I don’t run away.
I look back at my house wondering if I would ever see it again. I think about all the things that happened there. I remember working on the farm with my father. I remember horseback riding with my mother in the field of wheat which is now only dull grass.
When I get to the shed I’m already soaked. I open the door to the shed, look around a few minutes, walk out, and close the shed door. “Actually, I think I left some money over there.” I point to a tree on the other side of the field. They look in the direction I’m pointing. When they turn to look back at me, I’m gone.
I turn around and see all fire nation soldiers but one chasing me. The fire nation soldier who wasn’t chasing me was Byron. He was looked surprised to see that there would be any action going on, but then he started chasing me also.
I bend a mass of water from the river near my house and it knocks all four of them over. They recover quickly and get back to their feet. Frustrated, the boy from school shoots fire at me but misses. I run up a hill, and now I’m yards away from them. Still frustrated the boy throws lasso at me he found outside near my backdoor from when my family had a farm. It falls around my leg, and he jerks it back and I fall to the ground hitting my head on a small rock. I felt dizzy and my vision was a little blurry. I bend more water from the river making it sharp enough to cut the rope and I start running again, but the ground is so slippery and I’m so dizzy I fall again.