I was a water bender in the southern water tribe, Same as Avatar Aangs wife Katara. My childhood wasn’t anything memorable,
but what I did remember was the faces of my parents.
And the one day that changed my life.
You see My parents were among the strongest benders in our tribe,
so naturally I was one too
My bending ability was realized at a young age.
My parents were scared of it, not because of how strong iâ€™d become.
But of the Fire Nation and how ruthless they are.
So they hid my bending from everyone.
Even from our closest family, We lived in a small tribe so the smallest of words flow through the town like vast rivers.
They would train me on stormy days, when the villagers were tucked away in their homes.
So no one would see us and catch on.
For years it went on until one horrid day.
When the Fire Nation came to claim the last of the water benders.
They took my parents from me with no hesitation.
I watched as they fought and died.
All they brought me up to be faded, I wasnâ€™t as strong as I could have been.
I wasnâ€™t brave like they were, I was scared.
So i did what any coward would do i ran.
I ran away with nothing just the clothes on my back.
I didnt think about going home again for all i knew there was nothing left of it.
No one left, I kept running and running.
Finally days past, I was hungry and alone in the icy tundra.
No food or shelter only the cold winds and even colder water.
I finally gave up, I was too tired and angry with myself.
I could have saved them if I fought I could have saved my village.
But i ran like a coward and let them all die.
Itâ€™s all I thought about before it came.
The fear, fear of the Fire Nation. I saw the ship halt to a stop.
A few members of the crew immediately hopped off the ship.
Two men grabbed me by my arms and dragged me in.
I tried to fight them off but it was no use.
I couldnâ€™t water bend because my body was too weak.
So i settled for kicking and screaming.
They cuffed me as quickly as possible.
One man slapped me and called me a little brat.
I couldn’t help but think this was the end of me.
â€śIâ€™d rather be in the ice then in this crap shipâ€ť i shouted as they brought me down a flight of stairs and through a series of hallways.
Finally we stopped in front of a door and the other man escorting me knocked.
â€śCaptain we got herâ€ť Said the man with the long pointed beard.
I was contemplating on where to kick him, to get even for the slap from before.
Either way Iâ€™m a goner so I might as well.
I heard a deep voice mutter come in.
The other man opened the door as the other brought me in.
I was in the captainâ€™s quarters.
This canâ€™t be good I kept repeating in my head.
The two men escorting me explained what happened bringing me in.
He asked to speak to them alone.
They all walked out into the hall And the captain slammed the door behind him.
I heard him yelling at the two men.
But I couldn’t make out what he was saying.
I was too tired and distraught to even try to make sense of the words that were streaming out his mouth.
The words were familiar but it all sounded like he was speaking a different langue.
It was all blurred. He finally walks into the room his bright brown eyes staring into mine.
â€śIâ€™m sorry Childâ€ť Said the Captain.
I looked at him confused and said â€śyour speaking my langue again.â€ť
He laughed and asked â€śWhat are you talking about?â€ť
I replied â€śOh, Uhm Nothing.â€ť
He sat down on a chair next to a big black rectangle desk, and gestured for me to go over to him. So i crossed the room and sat down in the seat right next to his.
He took the cuffs off of me and said â€śYour safe now.â€ť
He talked to me for hours and told me about his wife and her passing.
He mentioned how she was very ill and had gotten worse when she got pregnant. â€śShe passed away giving birth to my daughter, and my daughter died several days later due to the same blood disease.
He also told me how I looked exactly like his wife when she was a child.
He asked me many questions, but avoided asking where I was from and then
He introduced him self as Captain Tylk.
He asked me my name And age, I replied â€śAzaria Seven and a half years old.â€ť
He smiled and said â€śMy daughter would have been around your age you know.â€ť and looked down at his hands that were folded together.
â€śI have a proposal for you. Ha..how would you like to come live with me?â€ť
I starred at him for five minutes thinking about it. I finally decided,
and looked over to him. I nodded yes and he smiled brightly,
his eyes lit up and said come here daughter.
He grabbed me and embraced me into his arms.
He took me to the fire nation where he taught me all of there traditions.
He quickly learned of my bending and hid it from everyone else in the Fire Nation.
As my birth parents did he bannd me from using it when we were home.
He took me practically everywhere.
By the time I was fifteen he decided to take me along with him.
Word of The Avatarâ€™s return came out and his fleet was part of the search party.
So naturally he wanted me by his side.
He wanted me to learn his trade, and thought it would toughen me up.
Make me a bit stronger, he told everyone I was his little solider.
After months on the ship raiding any and every town that allegedly aided the avatar, i got sick of it all.
I couldnâ€™t bare all the fighting, and all the hate.
I couldnâ€™t stand watching all those towns get burned down.
I couldnâ€™t stand my father any more.
And yet again there I was that scared little girl wanting to run from the Fire Nation.
I started to fear the man who raised me, and question myself.
I knew I was meant for something more then this.
Despite how I felt, I tried to obey him.
I tried to pretend he was the same as he was the last eight years of my life.
But how could I, how could I when I realized I was a traitor.
I betrayed my own people.
I betrayed the people who gave up everything for meâ€¦
Finally the day came, The day they were looking up to since The Avatar was said to have returned.
A younger man came into my room looking for my father shouting.
We couldn’t make it out at first but it got clearer as he grew closer.
â€śCaptain We found him, Itâ€™s The Avatar. Sir itâ€™s Avatar Aang.â€ť
We ran on deck to see for our selves.
â€śIt was perfect timing too, because we just started docking to fuel and we saw his bison flying over head sirâ€ť Said the young man in the uniform.
He looked no older then eighteen, nineteen years old a new recruit…
As soon as my father saw them they immediately came up with a plan to apprehend him.
But the second I saw him getting off of his Air bison, My plans changed.
I wanted to make my father proud, He tought me to fight for what i believed and so i decided i will.
It all came back all the hope I had and I knew what i had to do.
I crept off the ship avoiding the troops as they prepared to battle the avatar and his friends.
I ran straight to the market and found a disguise, no I found my true I identity.
A Water Tribe outfit that looked fairly similar to one my mother used to have and a white Geisha mask…
I changed and started to attack. I used my water bending at full force and threw half of the men back onto the ship.
I swayed my hands back and fourth dodging the fireballs coming my way.
I created a title wave large enough that it knocked the ship back over two miles into the sea. I looked at the ship and said â€śIâ€™M sorry dad this is what i have to do.â€ť
I ran towards the rest of the troops that were attacking the avatar and washed them off the docks into the icy water.
â€śTry and burn that Fire Nationâ€ť said a water tribe boy with a ponytail and a boomerang.
He looked over to me and shouted â€śThanks!â€ť
I replied â€śNo problem.â€ť I looked over to Aang and said â€śI knew as a child that The Avatar would return and stop this dreadful war.
What I wanted was peace and you are it.
You are the only person to restore balance and peace to all the nations.
So Iâ€™ll handle them and you, well just Go before you get hurt!â€ť
Your life is worth alot more then mine.
I watched as they all hopped onto the Air Bison.
The Avatar, a blind Earth Kingdom girl, a Water Tribe girl, the water tribe boy and a flying monkey looking thing?
I turned to fight when a gust of wind knocked them off the piers.
The water tribe boy shouted at the troops again â€śYou must love the water because your dying just to get into it!â€ť
He has got to stop trying to make jokes i thought to myself shaking my head.
â€śWere not leaving without you.â€ť The Avatar said extending his hand down from the flying bison. I grabbed his hand, and got lifted up by him and the water tribe boy.
They all thanked me and introduced them selves.
So I took off my mask.. After hours of talking to them about how to avoid the fleet,
and other ways of hiding from the Fire Nation we landed In a small clearing in a Earth Kingdom forest.
They asked me various questions about how i knew what i did.
So I told them the truth and everything else.
By the end of my story all of them were crying even Toph.
Sokka was quick to point at her and make a scene over it,
And Toph well, she was quick to hit him in the face with a rock.
Aang and I laughed so hard when Katara ran up to me and hugged me.
She gestured to everyone to come and join so they did.
Toph was hesitant at first but Sokka kept his mouth shut so she decided to join in.
I soon realized Katara had a problem, A hugging problemâ€¦.
We spent a few more days in the Earth Kingdom Before Leaving.
The whole time we spent we were training one another.
We would do sessions between me Katara and Aang with the water bending.
Then Sokka and I would do hand to hand combat.
I taught him The style of fighting the troops use, the ones that donâ€™t fire bend of course. I also showed him the fire bending style and how to avoid getting toasted.
In between that I would train with Toph,
But it wasnâ€™t any type of training like with the others.
It was on how to be stealthy when playing pranks on people.
Sokka wasnâ€™t exactly keen on me hanging with Toph.
All though she was younger then me, The youngest in the group, she was the one I got along with most.
We kind of had a sisterly thing, it was nice to actually feel like I belong and not be hidden.
They made me feel like I had a family again.
After leaning of Sokka and Kataraâ€™s Origin I was over come with joy.
Finding that there were still members of my tribe still alive gave me hope,
that not all of my family is gone.
I could feel there eyes watching me, I was trying to sneak away but they caught me red handed, Sokka started rambling on â€śI Knew we shouldnâ€™t have trusted you, I canâ€™t believe you betrayed your own Tribe again!â€ť
â€śDonâ€™t you dare!, All I did was switch teams itâ€™s not my fault you suck at manhunt and you call yourself a real man please I met Penguin-Seals manlier then you.â€ť I yelled back.
â€śSokka, Iâ€™m your sister and iâ€™m not even on the same team.â€ťKatara yelled at him in her motherly tone. I laughed and said â€śBoys vs Girls?â€ť
â€śThass snot fair Three against twoâ€ťSokka mumbled as he walked off..
â€śYou know either way it wouldnâ€™t be fair to the other team,
Because you have The Avatar!â€ť I said half kiddingâ€¦.
â€śWhy do I like such a sissy.â€ť I said mumbling as I walked away. â€śAZARIA. Chin up and speak louder when you talk!â€ť Katara shouted. â€śYes Mommy Katara! Iâ€™ll speak up for now on!â€ť I shouted back.
I could hear Toph and Aangâ€™s muffled laughter in the background,
So I shot the pair of them a dirty look.
â€śBy the way Iâ€™m Giving you a dirty look.â€ťI yelled over to Toph,
She started laughing even harder.
I rolled my eyes and insisted on starting the game.
So we did, after several minutes of arguing over who gets to hide first with Sokka, Aang suggested a coin toss.
Us forgetting that the faded copper pieces he has are the same on both sides, so we ended up going with Kataraâ€™s idea drawing sticks who ever gets the longest gets to hide.
Iâ€™d still prefer Tophâ€™s method, Me and Sokka arm wrestle it out but Katara didnâ€™t want to listen to her brother whining over a girl beating him at a strength test. So we settledâ€¦
We were deep in the woods when I heard foot steps coming my way, I could hear Toph whispering twinkle toes is coming hide.
I laughed at her name for him then when back into game mode.
I took my chances and climbed up a tree hoping he wouldn’t see me and air bend up it to get meâ€¦
I could feel the ground vibrate and I knew who it was immediately I whispered to Katara, And over to Azaria â€śTwinkle toes is coming hide.â€ť
Azaria laughed at her new found nickname for Aang, And shot up the tree.
I could feel Katara running off as well but me no Iâ€™m staying here.
I pushed forward feeling around into the tree.
It was hollowed out to a point just big enough for me to fit and have room to wiggle my toes in the dirt, so I slipped in quickly and stood still.
Listening and feeling everything around me, Aang whizzed right past where Azaria and I were and heâ€™s going straight to where our other team mate is.
Typical twinkle toes running after Kataraâ€¦
I could hear feet thudding on the ground crunching the leaves as he went along, Shoot Aang was catching up and fast.
All I knew was I couldnt get caught or our team had to gather the food, clean the clothes and take care of everything else by our selves.
Where could I hide, where are you come on I know there has to be something and there it was.
Just in the knick of time I found it! The perfect place to hide.
A little cave tucking in behind a bunch of bushes.
I ran inside as quickly as possible and I took my position behind a boulder.
I hope we dont get found…expecially by sokka.
It’d be embarassing for any of us to be caught by him in his “Soilder Disguse.”
I don’t care how manly he thinks he looks, No real man wears makeup…
I started getting warmer and the dark cave lighter, as I went to turn and see what it was I saw a fire ball shoot past my face.
I ran out screaming slamming right into Aang, “RUN!” I said not letting our collision stop me, I grabbed his hand and practically dragged him.
I could feel the heat of the fire as it coverd the ground behind us, it was gaining fast and so were the fire nation soilders.
I could hear their screams, and i knew what it was instantly, Firenation…
Toph run! I shouted to her climbing down the tree.
“Already on it sister” She said running past me as I hopped down.
She grabbed Sokka by his shirt collar and pulled him back towards camp
By the time I was at the clearing I realized I didnt hear Katara And Aang any more,
and they should have been back by now.
I looked over to Sokka and Toph who already had most of the camp site packed up and on Appa’s Sattle.
And there was a flyer on the ground, a wanted poster for Aang, Katara, Sokka, And Toph.
It was different from the rest it had another picture added onto the bottom, It was me!
I picked it up and read it quickly, Firenation thought the Avatar Kidnapped me.
I cant face them like this, So I looked back to Sokka and toph and told them what it said…
Sokka, you wanna help me with my warrior make up.
I can’t have them recognize me when i water bend.
He smiled and said sure! We painted my face and then Sokka fixed his warrior face.
We had Appa Fly above head with momo to aviod the fire nation, And Toph held onto the Bison whistle.
We ran back towards where We last heard from Katara and Aang, They were fighting off the troops but getting surrounded.
The three of us snuck around them as soon as we realized it was ,my fathers fleet.
My adopted father, i was glad i painted my face.
I disguised my voice and went into battle mode.
They were a bunch of idiots, trying to fight three water benders around a bunch of streams and lakes.
I made the first strike throwing three men up in the air over twenty feet with a single stream of water.
They were terrified at first they thought i was a spirit, until thy set the ends of my long blue dress on fire.
I put it out immediately, and Toph came out of nowhere trapping atleast 13 men in a giant cage made of earth.
I laughed at it, and ran over to Aang and Katara. I changed my voice made it sound a little deeper and spoke “Are you guys alright?”
“Were fine, we just need to distract them and get out of here.”Aang replied.
Don’t worry we’ll figure something out Sokka says jumping out of a tree and landing on a fire nation soilder knocking him out.
We were surrounded but the odds were against them, We knew all their techniques and secrets.
And they knew nothing of our training…
Sokka turned to me with a worried face, and i smiled at him thn told him,
“Were warriors Sokka. Sothern Water Tribe warriors, We got this.”
He chuckled and answered by shouting to the troops, Yah heard were warriors. We don’t need an army.
A hand full of them men laughed until we started attacking at full force.
Aang and Toph caged a few more groups of men, Sokka and I were in combat with a few men and Katara was Sneaking away.
When the men realized she was sneaking off a hand full of them ran after her, “Now Toph” Sokka shouted.
Toph turned and whent into hr earthbending stance.
All she did was motion her hands towards the men and the earth dropped from underneath them.
They were trapped in a pit and now we had less then half of the men left.
Including my father Toph handed the whistle to Aang as my father ran towards me with knives made of fire.
He was raging, He knever looked at me like that before, but I wasnt scared.
He had no idea who i was, “Wheres my daughter” he shouted as he through fire at me profusely.
I yelled out in a deep voice, “They Girl you once knew as your daughter is gone.” There is no more Azaria!”
He kept shooting at me missing and commanded the rest of his men to attack me.
I kept egging him on, and he fell for it not realizing the rest of them were on the bison.
I heard Appa’s rawr and realized it was time to go.
Appa turned to my father, No to Captain Tylk And blew him and the rest of his men off their feet with one wave of his tale.
We were already gone by the time they got up to fight.
After hours of flying we landed on a mountain where we found an old abandoned house and not to far from a villiage.
We settled in the house and Katara hugged me, “I’m sorry you had to do that.
Fight the man that raised you i mean.”
I hugged her back and startd crying, I was crying so hard they couldnt understand a word i was trying to say.
When I finally calmed down enough to talk I said it.
“He looked at me with so much rage and anger, and I realized something.”I hessitated for a moment.
“Spit it out already.” Toph said. Katara, Aang and Sokka simotaneously sushed her.
“Well, I dont Want to be called by Azaria any more, Because thats what everyone in the firenation knows me as, And I dont want him to find me out.
Aang looked at me and asked, “Then what do we call you?”
I hessitated and then i said, “dunno, but we’ll figure something out.”
“How about Zari?” Sokka shouted.
“How about no.” I replied almost instantly. “Captain Tlyk Used to call me that.” I said softly while putting my head in between my legs.
think think, what can they call you.
“What About Keira or Maeve?” Toph Said.
“Maybe, but I dont really think they suit me.”I replied
“Well, how about we use something with an A in the begining. Something simular but not too simular to your name so it’s easy to remember?” Sokka said.
“Yeah so lets all think of names that start with A that would suit Azaria’s personality.” Aang said excited.
“How about Adian? Katara Suggested.
“Possibly, It sounds pretty nice. Might be little bit before I’m used to it, but i’ll take it into consideration.” I said trying to to sound rude.
“Ooh! i got a few, Abagale! Or Allister!”
“Are you trying to be cruel? Besides I think Allister is a boys name.” I said shaking my head.
After an hour we had a list of names, and i didn’t like a single one.
and the rest were too horrible to write down…
“I once knew a girl named Alesia. She was from the earth kingdom, knew her over a hundred years ago. You rmind me of her a little bit actually.” Aang said to me.
“Alesia! Thats it.” I said hopping up and tackle hugging him.
I gave him a kiss on the cheek and said “For now on my name it Alesia!”
He started blushing but Ididnt care, I hugged him again and said “Thank you, thank you, thank you. I thought we’d never find a good name.”
Katara Snapped at my remark, “So what our names weren’t good enough?”
“No thats not it at all, It’s just… They weren’t me. Alesia seems like it would suit me better then the rest.” I said trying to show her I was taking her thoughts into consideration.
I realized about twenty minutes later that she wasn’t angry because of the names, She had a crush on twinkle toes.
I Looked at her then at him, they way she was sneaking looks at him.
Then the way she looked at me when I hugged him, and gave him a peck on the cheek.
How didn’t I see this before?! I thought to myself.
But then again, this could be my over imagination running off again.
I was always wrong about these things, I guess it’s time to get some proof.
I started laughing aloud and everyone looked at me like I was insane.
“Toph come here!, I need your help” I shouted.
Sokka jumped and said “Ooohh no you don’t, You too weasles are not playing anymore pranks on me, Last time I almost got bitten by a snake!”
“Oh Relax It was a baby Frog-Cobra they don’t develop their venom until they are about six or seven months old.” Toph Said With a huge smile on her face.
I laughed even harder and Sokka scowled at me, but his face only made me laugh more.
I stopped to breathe and said ” don’t worry it’s not a prank. We’ll not entirely”
He stormed over to Toph and I And demanded to know why I called her over.
I told him and her both of my suspisions, and They both agreed with it.
They even added on how Aangs been obsessed with Katara since day one.
Just to make sure I decided to test the waters.
“So Anggy, Seeing the sun’s about to set I was just wondering if you’d like to come take a walk with me to find some food. You know, so we dont have to eat rocks for dinner”
He hopped up and said “sure”.
I could see Katara’s eyes rolling in the background, so I grabbed his hand and turned to Katara, “Oh I was wondering!? Maybe if you wanted to…”
“Come help? Sure!” Katara Replied quickly.
“No I meant stay and find fire wood Being that Sokka’s going fishing, And Toph Can’t see”I said with a huge grin on my face trying not to laugh.
Then I dragged Aang out the door and shouted to her “Okay thanks!”
Aang and I found a couple of berry and fruit tree’s not too far from where Katara was collecting wood, I could hear her mumbling to her self and it made me giggle.
Everytime i did Aang would blush, He thought i liked him.
But truth was I was just trying to see how much Katara and Aang liked one another.
He locked his arm in mine and we started walking, I made sure we headed in her direction.
As soon as she was insight I started giggling, And pulling him closer.
Aang thought it was because of some old Air Bender joke he told but i was just trying to get Katara to spill out her guts.
“Oh Hey guys!” Katara shouted sounding angry.
It”s working i know it, it has to.. She ran up to us with a Ton of sticks in her arms and asked to speak with me alone.
She shoved the sticks in Aangs arm and said “Go over there!” pointed to a log laying on the ground.
“I dont know what you think your doing, but if you think your going to have a relationship with him your dead wrong.”Katara said to me viciously.
“Woah Woah, relax. No need to be jealous. You can have him when i’m done.” I tried to push her some more.”
“I don’t like him like that, It’s not… I’m just warning you were in the middle of a war and he has to practice on his bending not on some prissy little girl!”
Okay so it’s definately working I thought smiling.
“Don’t worry about that, I won’t Distract him any more then you.” I replied
“Good, I’m Glad we had this talk. And uhm… I’m sorry for talking to you like that. I’m just a little worked up.” Katara said.
“It’s fine, like I said I won’t distract him that much…”
“Wait, What do you mean that much?” Katara shouted.
“Don’t worry i’ll take care of him.” I said waving and walking away.
I walked up to Aang grabbed the basket of fruits we collected and said lets go to the cliff to see the sun set.
Katara stormed up to us, and Aang handed her the wood.
“See you in a few Katara!” He said running towards the sun set.
As soon as we got to th cliff he turned to me and asked ” Azaria, what was all that about,? I mean why was Katara so angry?”
“Do you want to know the truth?” I mumbled.
“Yes, Azaria, I do.” Aang said loudly.
“OKay, Well.. I know how you feel about Katara.”
“How! I never told anyone!” He said sounding nervous, And there she was right on que.
I heard her walking out way, And i shouted it out to him, “If you Like Katara so much why don’t you just tell her! I can’t sit here and try and make her jellous forever.”
“It’s more then that though, I think I love her.” He said now blushing.
“Then just tell her!” I shouted out.
“Because there’s no way she could feel the same Aang sounding defeated.
“Why don’t you let her decide that, before making the desicion for her.” I replied
“I can’t tell her and neither can you!” Aang’s voice sounded broken up.
“Aang!, I think Azaria’s right. You shouldn’t decide things for other people when they arent told everything.” Katara said walking through the bushes.”
His jaw dropped and then Katara blurted it out, “I love you too!.. but, but i don’t think we should. Were still in a war and we dont know how things ar going to turn out. And its bad enough us just being friends and how badly it would hurt to lose you, but if we were in a relationship I don’t think I could even let you fight.”
Aang walked up to her and cupped her face in his hands.
I’ll do what ever I can to come back safe to you every time I have to fight in this war.
And in any other situation, I won’t let anything happen to myself or to you. I’m here to stay.” He said as he went in to kiss her.
I turned around Grabbed all the firewood and went for the basket of fruit. I found momo waIst deep In It eatIng all of the food we gathered.
I Picked him up and put him down on the ground and he chased me all the way back to the house…
Common Sense Is The Knack Of Seeing Things As They Are, And Doing Things As They Ought To Be Done – Harriet Beecher Stowe