The Avatar and The Exemplar

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  1. The mid spring sun graced over the young Republic City, a steel spiderweb of a city just a little north of all the lands. It was a result of so many colonies and villages needing to be relocated as a result of the battles the previous avatar and exemplar waged across all the nations. Its population was simply staggering, and quickly resulted in a uniquely comfortable but still uneasy place to live. Still its a very large place, which makes it the perfect place to hide for whatever reason.


    Quietly as the mid day started to beam out a window and into his face, Siku groaned as he felt his ship, the Hi-Lahara, gently sway against the waters below. It was all something he became quite okay with, as his had this ship for as long as his lived in Republic City. In fact he got it quite quickly, when while looking for a home he ended up meeting a man who needed the boat sold quickly so he could skip town. Why he 'needed' to vanish like that is anyone's guess, but still Siku happily took the deal. Despite the fact that living in the docks was weird, and the ship had room he simply had no idea what to do with, Siku quite loved his home.

    He did his morning routine, water bending himself a crude shower, using a knife carefully to shave his face clean. Looking out to the sea and city just out in front of him. Siku got dressed in his typical water tribe clothes, having never really bothered to get anything new despite having the money and repeatedly telling himself too. Instead he quietly gathered his things, heading off of his ship and out into the city for work.

    The commute was a bit long and tiring as the tavern he worked at was more in the heart of the downtown area. Still though it gave a unique stroll through such a wonderfully strange place like Republic City. Seeing Earth buildings meshed in with Fire buildings. All crammed into an overall style that is not seen anywhere else. The Tavern, a long standing part of the city called 'The Sleepy Badgermole'. Built by an Earth Kingdom resident wanting to branch out and make it in a growing city. Routinely populated by those wanting a drink or a place to stay for the night. Siku just worked the main bar as his job. Getting drinks and orders out while also at times making sure things didn't get too crazy. “We have a guy coming in to play...” His boss stated simply, large and while easy to work with, a man of few words. Siku nodded as he got behind the counter, already two older looking men were being served.

    “Ugh, you know that embodiment neighbor I have living next to me...” One of them was telling the other, loud and slurred enough that Siku couldn't help but listen in. “He was complaining about how the landlord isn't fair to him. Because his not a bender. Who does he think he is? Should be grateful he even gets to live there.”

    “Yeah no kidding! I wish all the way back when the evil spirit took the embodiment that the original avatar got rid of all of them. No good pieces of...” Suddenly before the other man could finish a large water tribe knife stabbed into the wooden counter in front of them. Held by an angry Siku.

    “Excuse me, but we do not condone that kind of talk in this establishment.” Siku stated calmly but sternly. “Either drop it or leave.”

    “Oh yeah? What makes you think you're so special huh?!” One of the older man started to lean upright from their stool, the other closely following the movement.

    Siku sighed, pulling the knife back out of the table before putting it away. “I'm not going to warn you again, and I don't have a problem making you two leave if need be.”

    One of the old men was about to start making more empty threats, only to suddenly take a large glob of water from a nearby sink. Followed up with Siku sliding up onto the counter and spin kicking him in the face. The other man was about to step in when Siku spun around and nailed him in the jaw with another part of his boots. Both men staggered back when Siku spun upright, standing on the counter before leaping off. Straight at both men before planting his feet into both of them. Slamming them hard out of the tavern, through the swinging doors, and onto the streets outside in a daze. Where a blond haired, red shirted man looked on and, after looking around. Gently reached down to free the men of their finical holdings. “Thank you... and thank you....” Fang quietly muttered before chuckling and leaving.

    Siku flipped back up to his feet before calmly going back to behind the counter. “Anyone else want to say something bad about benders or embodiments?” He asked aloud to a silent room, there weren't many there but they were all silent. “No? Good.” Siku huffed.
  2. Nukka, long brown hair and orange colored eyes. A pretty girl with a big heart and thirst for adventure. She came in to Republic City on the roaring waves, she held on tight to the railings of the ship as she watched the city come into view. Her knuckles turned white from the grip and her heart pounded. This is what she wanted, an adventure all of her own. It was astounding to her that she was allowed to leave the Water Tribe, if her parents knew about her now they would-actually, Nukka had no idea how they would react. They probably wouldn't care and she didn't mind.

    As the ship docked Nukka finally let go and when it was safe to get off she grabbed her small pack and made her way with shuffling people off board. Nukka smiled and took in the new sights, she wasn't at the Water Tribe anymore. Nukka wore a short dress with no sleeves, the blue representing her nationality. (Even though she was born in the earth kingdom). She always preferred to wear shorter clothing and flats that wrapped twice around her feet with ribbons. The shorter clothing and shoes that fit to her feet perfectly were the ideal clothing for they allowed her more freedom and motion, something she liked especially as a water embodiment.

    The down part of her clothing styling was the looks she got from the men as she walked through the streets. She kept her head up high, ignoring any glances or stares at her. She had a couple of things to do around Republic City and talking to strange men was number one of the 'do not do' list. Though she would have to talk to one strange man, hopefully it would be the avatar. On her 'to do list' was find a place to eat, see the center of town, and find the avatar. She had recieved a letter in the mail awhile ago from her parents, the first one in years, saying Avanish and Siku were no longer on the island and were free. Nukka had hoped Avanish would visit her but she couldn't wait forever for him, he must be busy with who knows what! So Nukka took it upon herself to find Avanish herself.

    Sources claimed the avatar could be found in Republic City, though she wasn't sure if these sources would hold true. She still wanted to see the city so this would not be a set back for her.

    Nukka wanted to see the center of the city so she made her way slowly but surely through the downtown area when suddenly two men were thrown, or beaten, out of a tavern called 'The Sleepy Badgermole'. Nukka watched a man take their money from the other side of the street. She didn't care, obviously they had to have done something. Nukka was curious about the Tavern and figured she needed a place to get a drink so why not go in?

    Nukka stepped around the men and through the swinging doors. She smiled at the site of the place, it was sure different then any place she was used to. As she sat down at a table she pulled out a picture. This picture was her favorite picture of all time, it was the last picture she ever got of Avanish. In the picture were two smiling boys, arms around each other, one being Siku and one being Avanish at nine years old. Nukka had stolen it from her parents before they shipped her off to the Water Tribe. It was the most recent picture she had of them. It was her only clue to find the Avatar and to find Avanish. Her fear was not recognizing Avanish anymore, hopefully both of these boys still looked the same just older.

    Avanish, the blonde hair orange eyed mystery. He walked through the streets with an arrogant aura around him. He had this smile, a thin grin of mischievousness, that he held on his face as he stuffed his hands in his pockets and he made a tight right turn down a dinky street. Some of the homeless lived down this street, who made their clothes of rags and dreamed of riches. They looked at Avanish with wide eyes, they didn't know who he was but he obviously didn't belong down this street. Running his left hand through his hair he looked above the heads of those who rubbed their hands with fire or made their beds from the earth.

    At the end of the street he came across a warehouse, a green musty warehouse. He was supposed to meet several embodiments here, a triad called Raging Storm. On his first day at Republic City he had stalked the streets and talked to many shop owners and people around the city, trying to figure out more about each Triad. After much research he found out Raging Storm was one of the most prominent strictly embodiment triads around. He then had to wait until he found them, which wasn't easy. They were sneaky but not very strong, of course to Avanish no one was really 'strong'. He remembered sitting out waiting for one down a street where he was told they 'looked after'.

    "Hey. What are you doing out on this street at this time? Don't you know better?" One of the men said to Avanish who sat in the middle of street with shops on both sides. He had found out, by force, from a shop owner that Raging Storm protected shops around here. "Me? Know better? I am here for a reason." Avanish had said with a smile while standing up to the large man. "Yeah? And your reason, mister?" The large man uttered. Now that Avanish was standing he realized that this man had to be at least a half foot taller than himself. But Avanish didn't feel threatened, he took everything like a joke. "Raging Storm. I need to speak to your leader." Avanish said while putting his hands back into his pockets and shifting his weight from one foot to another.

    "You don't need to speak to no one, buddy." The man said, balling his fist. "Oh come on, man. I have important information for you," Avanish wanted a fight, he wanted to show the man he was strong and was a force to be reckoned with, so Avanish began to poke and prode, "after all. You guys seem to need it. From the information I have gathered around town you guys are no threat to anyone. You are just a team of wussys who don't understand their own powers." Avanish grinned and tilted his head to the side. Question a man's strength, that was the best way to draw a fight.

    And it worked, the man threw a punch. A very elastic punch. He didn't move his own body, his fist just went straight for Avanish's face. 'A water embodiment. Sweet.' Avanish easily dodged it, using his own water embodiment to make his neck stretch to the side. The man looked confused, he might even drop the fight, which was not under Avanish's plan, "Oh. That's all you got. I, a water embodiment like you, come out from the shadows, question your strength, and all you have for me is a punch?" The man's face went red. Yes, this is what Avanish wanted. He came straight at Avanish, moving swift like water. His body stretched and grabbed out at Avanish's arm. Avanish allowed the man to grab him and throw him into the ground. It didn't hurt one bit for Avanish, since his body was like earth. Hard and impossible to damage. "That was fun. My turn?" Avanish asked, still grinning, as he stood up from the ground. Before he could get an answer, Avanish turned invisible, and rushed to the man. He wrapped his full body around him before the man could figure out what he was doing. The man also began to turn his body into rubber wrapping his arms around what he could feel. Avanish turned visible and smiled in the man's face, "Now. Should I light on fire?" Avanish remained in control, lighting his hands on fire first, which were wrapped around the man's back. Slowly his arms began to light on fire, the man gritted his teeth in obvious pain. He didn't want to yell though and Avanish had to appreciate this in him.

    So he turned invisible again and let off the flames, unwrapping his body from the man he ran off the side of the street, invisible. The man looked around in confusion but Avanish stretched his neck out to the man's ear, "Tell your boss the Exemplar wishes to see him."

    And with that Avanish returned his neck to normal and turned visible again and began a chill walk out of the street area, the night shadows cast down on the two. The man turned to see Avanish make a right around a corner.

    Avanish loved a good fight, but didn't want much of a fight out of the man. He just wanted to prove a point to him and that's what he had done that night. The next night Avanish had waited in the same street and the man from before came to him, giving Avanish a paper with an address, date, and time to meet the Raging Storm.
    #2 Alice Falling, Aug 20, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 21, 2014
  3. In the dim tavern of the Black DuckHorse, two men sat at a table in the back of the room. Each with a drink in their hand. They were discussing business. One of them was clad in a big fur coat with water tribe insignia on, he was a member of one of the triads, the Crimson tide, a officer soldier, actually. And the other man, his red hair and black suit gave him a look that stood out around the local filth of Rebublic city. His name was Soru, but people referred to him as the Blue Eyed Dragon, named because of his ice blue eyes and the dragon tattoo on his left sleeve.

    The man, named Jikanai, smiled as he looked at Soru, sipping from his drink. "So, turns out you're the man who's been.. Disturbing, the tide's shipments. Stealing our customers too, quite the stupid move by you, Mr.Deshuga." Jikanai, the baddest officer in the entire Tide, his voice lined with threats to Soru. Soru scoffed, as he put his feet up on the table, comfortably leaning backwards in his seat.

    "Maybe you should try and protect the shipments better. That should probably do the trick." Soru said nonchalantly. Obviously irritating Jikanai. "What's that? I think you're gonna get the heck out of Republic city. Or you're gonna have a icicle in your chest in a few moments." Jikanai said, as Soru saw how ice had covered the man's hand. Soru scoffed. " I don't think so." as a 'jolt' sound was heard and Jikanai collapsed over the table. Jikanai's henchman came to assist him, one of them grabbing Soru's hair, Soru rolled backwards out of the table, his feet into the man's chest, making him stumble backwards, Soru came back up on his feet, a fireball being sent from his left fist, hitting the thug in the chest, sending him flying across the bar, landing on two people's table.

    Soru scoffed as he got out some coins and threw them behind him. "Thanks for the drinks. By the way, moron one and moron two, you better go scoop up your friends. Don't even dare to try and follow me. " Soru said to the two guys whom were standing at the bar whom Soru had noticed as he got into the place was working with Jikanai.


    Soru headed out into the city, walking the streets, dropping a few coins to a local beggar whom thanked Soru whom ignored him and just continued walking. He walked a few more minutes and found a stand that sold all kinds of things, he bought some pieces of licorice which he chewed on, making his way to the docks.
  4. On the sides of the large streets, a small trio had set up their little stage. A dark haired boy with golden eyes played a sitar while a brown haired boy hit his drums in a fast paced beat. His green eyes were trained on the girl in front of the two. She swung her arms in an arc, moving her hips in time with the beat. The blonde girl took light and precise steps, creating a flowing movement with her hands. People watched as she danced, some captivated by the swift and precise movements. She made a small leap and took it into a spin on one foot. She kept it going, earning a small round of applause from the audience. As the music grew into a crescendo, the girl's movement's grew. She seemed to flow from one movement to the next, twisting and turning in the small circle of people that had come to see what the fuss was about. As the last few notes played, the blonde finished with a final stomp, her left hand high in the air and the right pointing toward the ground at a slight angle. With her right foot in front of the other, the girl panted, smiling as her red eyes taking in the crowd.

    Seeing as the performance was done, people clapped. The blonde smiled and curtsied as the two boys bowed. Some put money into a little hat that was sitting next to the sitar player, while others simply left. Once the people were finally cleared, the dancer snatched up the hat, counting the coins hidden in them. The sitar player walked up behind the girl, glancing over her shoulder. "How much we got, Jin?" He asked, trying to get a better look at the money.

    "Well... we got a lot of coins. 20 of them..." She moved aside the coins before dropping them back in the hat. "Looks like someone also decided to give us a berry." Jin pulled the berry out before putting it back in. Sighing, the girl ran a hand across her forehead to wipe the sweat from her brow. "Not much, but better than last time!"

    "Well, it's not going to divide evenly unless someone wants to take a berry instead of some cash?" Jin held up the berry as she said this, waiting for the boys to respond. "You know you want it, Manik!" The blonde waved the berry in front of the green eyed boy's eyes.

    "No way! If anything, you or Rishi should take it!" The boy laughed, pushing the girl's hand away from his face.

    "I volunteer Jin to take it since she probably could use the food after dancing." Rishi smiled, patting Jin's back.

    Jin rolled her eyes before popping the berry into her mouth. "Yeah, yeah... Alright, let's split this up!" The group poured over the money, making jokes while they did. After they each had a fair share in their pockets, Manik put the hat back on his head. "So, where are you two going?" She asked, curious.

    "Well, we have to get to that Triad meeting, we've probably already missed the-" Rishi quickly put a hand over Manik's mouth, his eyes screaming for the other boy to shut up.

    "Wait, did you just say Triad meeting?" Jin asked, a horrible feeling in her gut. When the two didn't answer, she continued. "Oh my Spirits, you did! You're part of the Triad gang aren't you! I can't believe this!"

    "Hei Jin, we didn't want you to find out this way..." Manik said, guilt quickly falling over his features.

    "Then when was I going to find out?" Hei Jin asked, folding her arms across her chest. "Were you guys just going to keep on being criminals at night then act like it was all fine and dandy during the day?"

    "We aren't criminals." Rishi snapped, a bit of smoke billowing out of his nose. "We're part of a gang because it gives us protection and it gives us cash that this won't make us. Now, you can't tell anyone, Jin..." He gently took a hold of the blonde's shoulders, forcing her to look him in the eyes. "If you don't tell anyone, we can protect you and your dad from the turf wars and stuff like that. You won't have to get involved... It will be like the Triads never even existed. You don't tell anyone about us, we keep you safe." The dark haired boy smiled. "Do we have a deal?"

    Protection from one of the most infamous gangs in town sounded nice. However, Jin's father had always taught her to do the right thing. That meant she had to bring them in, even if they were her friends. "I... No. I can't let you stay in this gang... I have to turn you in. If you go quietly, I'm sure they won't be too harsh on you..." Jin took a step back, pulling a couple throwing knives from underneath her skirt. The two boys looked to each other before sighing and lunging for her. Jin threw a knife at them for a distraction, running away before they had time to react. The boys gave chase, running after her.

    Jin ducked and dodged through the people on the street, trying to find a quick way to get home. She ended up ducking into an alley near the docks. "Now!" The ground beneath her shot up, capturing her leg in its grasp. Another shot up again, taking her other leg in its hold. A third and final one kept her hands apart, leaving her defenseless against the two benders. A small flare of fire burned brightly in Rishi's clenched hands. "We didn't want to hurt you Jin... but we can't let you talk. I'm sure you can still dance after this." The golden eyed boy took a deep breath, bringing the flame toward Jin's bare stomach. "You'll just need a bit of a reminder on what the triad can do..."
    #4 The Writing Owl, Aug 21, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2014
  5. Kye was fast asleep in the back of a rickety wagon filled with cabbages taking her to Republic City. For a cart filled with only cabbages it smelled like something had died and was rotting away, but the smell or the jerking movements and occasional cabbage that hit her face, Kye never complained. She would choose a smelly wagon over a boat any day.

    The wagon came to a lurching stop that jerked Kye hard enough to make her hit her head against a wall. Biting her lip hard in anger, she rubbed an eye and looked around, realizing they had arrived. The Earth Bender adjusted her green robes in a vein attempt to make her missing arm less obvious and pulled her satchel over her shoulder. "Thanks for the ride." She said to the driver and dropped a small bag of coins in his lap.

    Kye crawled out and took a deep breath, looking around. She had no real need to stay in Republic City, in fact she never stayed anywhere too long. Kye simply needed to restock her supplies, maybe get in a few fights since wherever she went fights tended to follow, and find a ride out and on to her next destination. Turning, Kye walked off not exactly paying close attention to where she's going. She did, however, notice a few odd stares she got when people realized she was a little different. No matter how much Kye hated the looks, she ignored them. Weather she likes it or not the looks were part of the deal that came with being an amputee.

    She reached into her satchel, pulling out a few coins and glances to a nearby cart selling food. As if on cue Kye's stomach growled loudly with the demand for food. She sighed and made her way to a cart. She inspected a roasted fish on a stick, her mouth seeming to water in response. That was, until she spotted the price.

    "Three dollars and seventy five cents for that?! You can get that cheaper in a fish market!" Kye exclaimed in disbelief, shoving the coins back in her satchel. The pudgy middle aged lady with a mole behind the counter frowns at Kye.

    "I sell quality food here! It doesn't get any better than this!" The lady looked Kye over and instantly knew she was new to the city. The lady grinned, thinking she could use that to her advantage. "Besides, I have the best fish in town! People come from all over Republic City just to eat it! You better buy some before lunchtime hits, that's when everyone comes to my cart!"

    Kye scoffed. She picked up one of the skewered fish, watching flies buzz around it. "Quality fish my butt! There's flies all over this!" She sniffed it and quickly drops the fish and pinches her nose. "And it smells funky!"

    After hearing Kye, a few other customers quickly left the ladies cart. The lady watches them leave and quickly starts shooing Kye. "Go away! You're bad for business!"

    Kye frowned at the lady, mumbling something about her being a rip off and walked off, continuing down the street. As she walked she struggled a little to reach an itch on her back. "Ahh! Dang it!" She mumbled under her breath in annoyance.

    As she continued to busy herself attempting to reach the spot on her back she finally gave up and leaned her back against the corner of the building she moved from side to side and sighed with satisfaction as she finally itched her back. When she finished she stiffened at the sound of nearby water and realized she was near the docks. Just the sound made her turn green with nausea. Being an Earth Bender made her prefer to stay somewhere were she could actually feel earth over water.

    Tilting her head, she heard another sound. It was two male voices down the alley around the corner of the building she was leaning against. Kye glances down the building, spotting two boys, one an earth bender the other a fire bender. She tilted her head, not quite being able to make out what they were saying. She peered past them and noticing a young girl, being restrained with earth and realize the fire bender had a ball of fire dangerously close to the girl.

    Kye sighed, she usually hated playing the good guy since it brought unwanted attention but she had to make and exception. Kye raised her foot then stomped it onto the ground, the earth under the earth bending boy shooting up in a pillar and sent him flying towards the water. "Good, now that he's gone.." Quickly before Kye gave the fire bender time to react she swiftly lifted an arm up, a large slab of rock from the ground lifted beside the fire bender. She thrusted the palm of her hand out as if she were throwing a palm heel to someones nose and the rock shoved the fire bender away from the girl. When Kye dropped her arm the earth restraining the girl fell back into the ground.

    Turning, Kye walked back around the corner of the building much preferring not to be seen by the kids. She pulled her arm through her her sleeve so her arm was inside her robe and the sleeve hung limply like the other, then rested her arm inside the robe above the belt, her hand sticking out the front of her robe slightly. Kye began strolling down the sidewalk back to where she came from.
  6. (Joint post between me and Alice Falling)

    Siku had since calmed himself down after the unpleasant start of his workday. It was always a difficult situation when Siku would such garbage being spewed about benders or embodiments alike. Even as the avatar Siku wasn't going to let people just be put down either way. Still his boss was willing and trusting of Siku's decision making in when to be calm and when to put a fist in a face. Since usually the avatar would be a bit more leinent on people, unless they pushed him the wrong way. Siku sighed to himself, he must have issues or something.

    As Siku strolled around the tavern to help customers, as the waitress was late coming in that day. Siku started his way up to Nukka noticing both her clothes and form. He wasn't that used to seeing fellow water tribe people in the city, and he needed a moment to compose after seeing the way said water tribe woman was dressed. Taking a breath before coming up, "Hello my name is Siku and if you would like to order something..." Siku reached over and pulling out a piece of paper off the table placed it in front of her. "Here is our menu, if you need anything just let me know."

    Nukka had barely noticed someone had approached her table, in fact, if Siku hadn't have spoken Nukka wouldn't have noticed him at all. Nukka looked up at him with a wiry smile, she was exhausted from the long journey to Republic City. But something struck her odd when he said his name, at first she didn't notice it. She had been so out of it she didn't process his name, but as she looked at him and then down to her picture she held she blinked a few times. The picture was old, it showed two little kids. But the person who stood in front of her looked much like one of the kids in the picture, Avatar Siku. "Excuse me? Did you say your name was Siku?" She spoke cautiously and slowly, afraid of her own question. Actually, she was more afraid of the answer.

    It wasn't until he saw her pause that his eyes went to the picture she had on the table. His eyes shooting open when he saw and remembered the moment. Him and Avanish, posing for a news story about their stay on the island. When his brain snapped back to the present the woman asked about his name. Siku didn't know who the girl was or more importantly why she had a picture of him and Avanish. Stammering Siku suddenly sweated profusely as he almost fell over backing away. "Uh no don't recall saying that at all!" Siku awkwardly lied as he started to leave. "Oh hold on they need me back in the kitchen someone else will be here good day and bye and stuff!" Practically babbling at this rate Siku was trying hard to speedily leave the scene.

    Nukka stared at the boy curiously until he seemed to come through from his own thoughts. She noticed the stammering and the nervousness in his voice and body language. Then he claimed to be leaving! Nukka didn't have time to think, he had to be the boy in the picture and he is one of the reasons why Nukka came to Republic City. "Wait! I need to know something!" Nukka quickly stood up from her seat, not even thinking she reached out her arm across the table feeling the stretch of her body to catch him. When she grabbed a hold of his arm she quickly ran around the table and stood in front of him, her grip firm on him, "I don't think you understand. I've been looking for you!" She wasn't usually this rash. Well, Nukka could be very blunt at times and she wasn't afraid to speak her mind. But if this really was the Avatar then being confrontational with him probably wasn't the best idea. And if she was in a better state of mind she would have thought this through.

    Siku felt his forehead chilled from all the perspiration running down it. The girl wasn't going to leave him alone clearly and Siku didn't have any where to run or hide. He knew deep down sooner or later in his life someone or something was going to come for him, the avatar. He wished he could think of someway out, someway he could just buy a little more time out of this. On the other hand though, it was probably time to face the music and just give in. "Well... I suppose..." Siku hesitated as the fear coursing through his body made it hard to finish the sentence. "I suppose you've found me." Siku finished with a sigh. He pulled his arm from her grip as he wiggled the wrist she had held onto. Siku should've seen the fact that whoever this girl was, she was going to be an embodiment if Avanish was involved.

    Nukka felt relieved when he didn't fight her, honestly she wouldn't be a match for the Avatar. Nukka let out a small sigh but the relaxation didn't last for long. Now she was nervous to talk to him. She remembered over hearing her parents once, how they talked about either Siku or Avanish being good and the other evil. Nukka didn't know if this was true but if it was she didn't know if Siku was good or evil, or even what good and evil meant. But she composed herself, not wanting to show any fear. Confidence was key and Nukka could do that, "I'm sorry if I startled you. I'm..." She lost it for a second, the confidence, she cleared her throat trying to figure out her words and exactly what she wanted to say, "I am looking for Avanish. I heard something happened with the island and now here you are. So he has to be somewhere to." Nukka wasn't sure telling him she is his little sister was the best idea, so for now she would avoid it unless necessary.

    Siku looked at her grimly, "Avanish..." He mindlessly said aloud as he looked back to the table that she sat at, gesturing of a bob of his head to follow her as he slouched down into the chair opposite of her's. "Well, I don't know if you want to find him is the problem." Siku stated plainly, looking out the window next to their table. "I haven't seen or spoken to him since all those years on that island, but considering the last time we saw one another, and the scars I have from it. I don't know if I'd want too honestly." Siku sighed as he looked back at the girl. "I mean why Avanish anyways? Whats the reason for the search?"

    Nukka followed the bob of his head and sat in her chair, holding a nice posture with a straight back. Her heads fell nicely in her lap as she listened to him talk. The more he talked the more she started to slump into her chair. So, it was true. If he had left scars and Siku really didn't want to see him, mabye Avanish really was the one who possesed a more evil spirit. Nukka didn't want to believe it but a part of her heart knew it was true. The other part wanted to yell and call Siku a liar! How dare he talk about her brother like that! But she kept her composure as she let out a long thin sigh this time and ran her hand through her tangly brown hair, "It's important to me to find him, to see if all this is true," Her voice trailed off for a second but came back to life, if he was telling the truth then he was the 'good' one, so now she could tell him the truth, at least she hoped it would be okay to tell him, "Um, Avanish is an important person in my life. Simply because he is my older brother and I haven't seen him since you and him were taken away many, many, years ago." Her eyes filled with tears but not a single one dropped, she felt too strong willed to let herself get too emotional in front of someone she didn't really know.

    Siku felt the lump in his throat grow, hearing her having trouble even speaking about Avanish. He didn't realize his exemplar counterpart had a sister at all, so all this was a bit of a shock to him. "Really? He never said anything about a sister but... " Siku nodded empty minded to himself. "Well, I don't know what to tell you about Avanish. Like I said I haven't seen him in ages, and I'm not exactly in a hurry to see him again either." Siku slouched down on the table counter with his hands clasped. "I would love to help I suppose, but I wouldn't know where to start. Or if you should even see him again considering his mind has just..." Siku gestured with his fingers to the side of his head. "Gone a bit fray I guess to put it nicely. It might just be best to move on, Avanish isn't someone you should be seeking. Related or not."

    Listening to his words Nukka sat up more in her seat. It sounded like, to her at least, he wanted her to give up. Now, giving up was not something Nukka did. "I don't think you could possibly understand what my life has been like," She looked him the eyes, "Pretty much all of my family has gone a bit fray, as you put it. But I am not giving up on him. I want my family together, even if it is only for a bit before he goes," She laughed to herself a bit, "Even if he has gone off the deep end. I want some kind of closure. And family means a lot to me." She folded her arms over her chest, resilient. It didn't matter to her what Avanish had become, she wanted an adventure anyways. Running into her estranged brother could be one grand adventure.

    Siku looked away, contumplating the situation in his mind before looking back to Nukka. "Alright, I'll help. But I don't promise anything." Siku stated with an index finger.
  7. “Miss Tsuchiko!”

    The voice was elevated but restrained. Everyone was formal at this place, at least concerning her name, but only one person would trouble themselves to so theatrically inflect the syllables.

    Tsuchiko turned. Her hands ceased their motion and the miniature water spout that was dancing stationary some few feet away from them toppled, crashing into puddles and mist. The owner of the establishment, a Mr. Beilei, was standing, clipboard in hand, his lovely assistant Yinting at his right hand as always. Tsuchiko saw no faces in the kitchen doorway. Either it was nothing major or Beilei had threatened them beforehand about what would happen if he caught them being nosey.

    “We need to talk.” His voice was lower now though his pencil mustache rippled with discontent as he added. “Concerning your work. Follow me now, please, if you would.”

    Tsuchiko looked back to the mess his surprise had indirectly caused. If he was smart, he wouldn't hold an incomplete job that he himself had interrupted against her. Sighing, she followed. She kept on her apron, expecting whatever it was to be quick. She hoped he wasn't about to try nitpicking his way out of paying her. She'd never reach her goal if that kept happening. And nothing, she had already decided, would be able to stop her. The last time it happened, she had promised herself in the heat of the moment that if it happened once more, she would use force to make her case. The thought that this could be that moment danced casually through her thoughts. She dismissed it with an inward nervous chuckle.

    Beilei lead her through one of the side exits. Yinting notably maintained a berth of distance between herself and him. Given the way he looked back at them with sidelong glances, and the way that they moved, Tsuchiko suspected this was part of some pre-arranged procedure. Maybe her first instinct had been correct after all. She began feeling for water sources nearby: the puddles she had left behind on the dining room floor were probably too distant, to say nothing of the steam from the kitchen. Maybe something the cooks had dumped wasn't too impure to--

    “Miss Tsuchiko, turn around.”

    Really, did he expect her to fall for that?

    He repeated himself. “Miss Tsuchiko, turn around. Miss Yinting, show Miss Tsuchi what is wrong with her work.”

    Okay, that worked. Pivoted by a mixture of pique and curiosity, Tsuchiko took the bait. After all, what could she have possibly done to warrant him saying it like that? With that sneer in his voice?

    They were now outside the front entrance. Yinting nodded and stepped through the entrance.

    She promptly feel on her face with a dubiously authentic cutesy whimper.

    “SEE?!” Beilei interjected.

    “She fell.” Tsuchiko noted, a finger hooked pensively under her chin. “She fell!” She turned to Mr. Beilei. “She fell?”

    “Yes,” he replied in his typically dignified manner. “And do you know why?”

    “Well, that section of the floor should already be dry...” Tsuchiko mused.


    “So Miss Yinting is a bit clumsy?”

    “Why don't do try stepping through the entrance yourself, then, Miss Tsuchiko?”

    She did. As if all too delighted to prove Tsuchiko's previous guess wrong, Yinting backspun herself from prone to a supine tuck, and then catapulted herself from supine to standing with a quick, hands-free, kip-up. Dusting herself, she stepped past Tsuchiko with her nose raised notably higher than before. Tsuchiko shrugged and stepped through the entrance.

    Something did feel off somehow.

    “Now do you see?” Beilei asked. “Erosion. The inside floor has gotten lower by inches! I hired you to clean, but this constitutes damage. I don't supposed you can Earthbend as well, can you?”

    “No.” Tsuchiko smirked. Sure, she was a waterbender, but she mostly wore the greens and yellows of the Earth Kingdom. For all the annoyance she had experienced with it in life, it was still her hometown, holding family and memories good and bad. And it wasn't like she would really feel any more at home among the Water Tribes.

    “As amazing as I am, I'm not the Avatar.” A little humor could help win a client over or back, in this case. It could also buy time to think of a real solution. “There's a trick with mud that I think might help though.”

    Bad move. Beilei was agape, face reddening. Was steam pouring from his ears? “There is NO WAY MUD IS GOING INTO MY RESTAURANT!”

    The sounds of pots and pans could be heard clattering across the floor. Two vertical lines of human heads appeared in the kitchen doorway. But Beilei shifting his death glare from Tsuchiko to them sent the staff scrambling back to work.

    “Fine,” Tsuchiko replied. “I will be gentler in the future.”

    “In the future?” Belei scoffed.

    Tsuchiko liked a measure of freedom, but Beilei was on the higher paying end of people who would give her work. She would be loathe to sever business ties with him so quickly. “I'm the best cleaner you've got! Possibly even Republic City! Who else can do this?”

    Tsuchiko quickly assumed a stance. Feet parted shoulder-length. Her palms turned upward, hands raising as her elbows bent to elevate. She leaned and swayed, her hands turning back downward as her arms traced imaginary, overlapping circles in the air. A miniature column of torrential water reformed from her earlier puddle and swept all along the diner's floor. Tsuchko finished with a pivot to her right, leaning her weight forward and thrusting her hands ahead. The water column arched and flew out of an open window where someone screamed, “HEY!”

    “Sorry,” Tsuchiko shouted.

    Beilei's moustachioed nose twitched. “Decent waterbending hardly makes you irreplaceable.”

    “That's not the part that I'm talking about.” Tsuchiko called to the kitchen. “Throw me a bun.”

    One of the chefs sheepishly exited the kitchen, a cooling steamed bun in hand. He looked to Beilei for approval. Though he was just as perplexed, Beilei coolly assented, and the chef threw Tsuchiko a bun.

    She held Beilei's gaze defiantly as she caught the bun in an outstretched hand, dropped dramatically to her knees and began to scrub the floor.

    “What are you doing?”

    After another ten seconds of scrubbing, seemingly ignorant of his question, Tsuchiko took the bun, shoved it into her mouth, chewed, and swallowed.

    Beilei, the chef, and Yinting winced in unison while Tsuchiko cackled somewhat less than sanely.

    “Tell me, Mr Beilei, how many of your cleaners, I wonder, can boast this level of confidence?”

    Honestly, he did not want to know if it meant displays like that. He covered his mouth with a napkin. “Miss Yinting,” he said, trying not to gag. “See to it that Miss Tsuchiko is payed her proper wages.”

    “Miss Tsuchiko, we will continue doing business so long as you never do that again. Neither the erosion nor the floor-buns. Do we have a deal?”

    Tsuchiko shrugged. “Sounds fair.”


    That had been a close one. All it had cost was a bit of dignity. Though it was hard to say how much of that was really left. At least, she thought, there had been both payment and a free meal of sorts in it. Now all she needed was a spot of tea to wash it down. She recalled there was a tavern that served a good brew. She had looked for work their once before deciding she would rather be a patron than an employee at a place like that.

    The usual barkeep was a Water Tribe expat though, which was probably one of the few things that kept her coming back. It let her feel some reconnection, however imagined and tenuous, with the people her mother had left behind.

    Yes, Tsuchiko thought, as she left for the tavern, after all her dealings with Beilei, she could use a good iced one(tea! Of course).
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