Huitzil: Younger Sister of Knight Lord Camazotz of the Bats, best friend of Mya Wild-Heart
Kyra: Niece of Knight Lord Jormund of the Dragons, old friend of Mya Wild-Heart
Azula woke up with a groan. Then her eyes flicked open and from side to side as she realized she was most emphatically not in the same place where she had passed out. She was no longer in the small metal bunker like shelter Xex had constructed, she was in a room, almost twice the size of the shelter. Then as she sat up and a blanket fell off her, she realized she was also in a bed. A very nice bed no less. It was smaller than the one she had had in the palace, but it was still larger than average, and unless she was mistaken the sheet beneath the blanket was silk.
She couldn't identify the fabric the blanket was made of, but it was coarse and warm, then as she took in the colors she realized it was fur. It wasn't like ordinary fur, more like wool. She wondered if perhaps the Kimarehto did wear actual clothes sometimes, and those she had met thus far were just exceptions. Then as she looked around more and said aloud, "How long was I out?" She slipped out from under the covers and realized that not only had her clothes been mended, they had been replaced with a robe like shirt and pants made of the same material as the sheet which she could see as she stood up to be rather silvery in color.
She walked across the wooden floor, noting how smooth it was and wondering again how long she had been unconscious. This was no hasty construction she thought, or if it was then Kimarehto were the finest builders she had ever seen. Then she stepped to the wide window and gasped as she realized how long she must have been unconscious. The window afforded her an excellent view of a fortress the size of a small town.
She was at what she guessed to be the top of a tower near the center of the fortress. She couldn't tell how many sides the fortress had, but she could tell there were numerous towers and courtyards between covered sections that stretched between towers. Hers was a low tower (comparatively speaking) and it sat next to a tall building, the only one she could see that was more than two levels and not a tower.
There was an immense hole in the ground off to one side of the fortress, undoubtedly some kind of mine, and the forest had been cleared away for several miles. There were numerous figures milling about below. Azula wouldn't have expected the Kimarehto to be helping with the talk of slaves, but she was surprised to see several Kimarehto moving blocks of stone that must have weighed thousands of pounds as troops of Fire Nation prisoners hurried along with lighter loads like bundles of wood and troughs of mortar.
She felt a sudden urge to explore and grabbed the coat Lycaon had made her from Gristle's pelt. She started looking for a door and then Kumiho's voice whispered in her head that the window was a door and Azula realized her coat had wings built in. She quickly shed her robe and put on the coat, using new instincts from Kumiho to fuse the flesh to her own, quickly willing the distasteful black fur out of existence, causing it to fall off quite neatly. She flexed her new wings as they ceased to be a cape and resumed the form of wings. Then she was presented with the issue of getting her top back on. She sighed at the fine fabric and decided there was nothing for it, she would have to alter it. She grew a claw instinctively and delicately cut two slits in the back.
With a grunt and intense bout of concentration, she willed the wings to un-grow into her back, noting how strange it felt to have the new bones in her back and deciding not to make a habit of retracting her wings. Then she put the top back on and tied it closed before willing her wings back into existence, willing them to grow out through the slits she had cut into the top. She flexed her wings again, making sure they would work and then she ran and jumped out the wide window, snapping her wings open before she could fall.
It took her a few moments to get the hang of it, but then she did and she gleefully performed an aerial loop before realizing that someone was flying next to her. She looked and saw a girl in dark clothes and light metal armor with short dark hair and red eyes hovering next to her with casual beats of her huge bat wings. "You must be Azula," The girl said. "Um yes, I am." She tried to hover the way the girl was and found that it was harder than it looked, instead opting to fly in circles, "May I ask who you are? Also, how are you doing that? I feel silly flying in circles like this."
"I am Huitzil of the Bats, younger sister of Lord Camazotz. You've got your wings hinged wrong for hovering. Don't try to adjust it midair, you'll fall, we're not high enough for you to catch yourself and I'm not sure I could catch you. 'Caon would be furious if I let you hit the ground." Azula smiled, then asked, "How did you know who I am?" Huitzil smiled, "You're the talk of the Ten Legions. Word has it you're the reincarnation of Kumiho Silver-Fox."
"I am," Azula replied. Huitzil nodded, "Word also has it you killed my cousin Gristle." Azula faltered, missed a beat and nearly fell out of the air. Suddenly something crimson fwooshed past Azula, startling her into nearly falling out of the air for the second time in as many minutes. "Huitzil, don't go there. If she is who she says she is, and even half of what Mya said was true, do you really want to mess with her?"
Azula righted herself and saw a gorgeous woman with flowing golden hair and armor composed of crimson scales hovering with dragon wings and looking at Huitzil, arms crossed. Azula noticed Huitzil declawing a hand with an innocent expression, "I wasn't going to!" The dragon woman nodded, "Sure you weren't. And the sun is pink shining down on yellow seas and purple trees." The dragon woman turned her gaze to Azula, "We can land if you'd like, it's terrible manners to hover while someone else must fly in circles. Huitzi's just being mean spirited. I'm Kyra by the way, and you already know Ty Lee."
Azula opened her mouth to ask what Kyra meant and was suddenly grabbed around the midriff in a hug as Ty Lee squealed, "Azula! You're awake!" Azula twisted and flapped furiously to stay aloft as Ty Lee let go and hovered on what looked like furiously beating hummingbird wings. Ty Lee tilted her head to one side, "You look great Azula! All that sleeping must have agreed with you." Azula looked at her, "Ty Lee? What? How did you? You've got wings?"
Ty Lee looked over her shoulders at her wings, then back at Azula, "Yeah, we should probably land so we can get you caught up. A lot's been happening since you went to sleep."
One Week EarlierEdit
Kyvon and Iath swerved to dodge a water spout. "You know dad, I'm starting to get the feeling somebody doesn't want us getting there!" Kyvon yelled over the wind, the voice of his dragon form easily carrying over the wind. Iath pointed with his horns, "I think I know who!" Kyvon twisted and saw a figure wrapped in a glowing white aura, directing the sea with intricate movements. Kyvon grinned, his cold red eyes gleaming with excitement, "I see him!"
He twisted mid air and charged the glowing figure, suddenly glowing with the dark blue energy of a Shaman. Shamans were the only people on Kimar to draw respect equal to the Knight Lords, they were the spiritual leaders as the Knight Lords were the political and military leaders. They had the rare ability to separate their spirit selves from their physical bodies, able to enter the spirit world and combat spirits when they crossed over into the physical realm to attack the people of Kimar who a great many spirits seemed to have a great deal of hatred for.
Kyvon, in addition to being the King, was also the mightiest Shaman on Kimar, and he had felled numerous spirits in the defense of his kingdom. Now, he thought as he wove through the waterspouts and rapidly flying ranks of his army like an immense white snake through a patch of brambles, I shall fell another.
As he approached the glowing figure, he roared out his challenge and every Kimarehto nearby swerved to get out of his way. The spirit turned and Kyvon could see the fear in its eyes as it registered his Shaman's aura. With a roar and twisting lunge, Kyvon's spirit self lunged out of his body to strike like a shark toothed snake. The spirit dodged to the side and before Kyvon could snap his spirit and physical bodies back together, he caught a glimpse of the spirit he was fighting.
He quickly spiraled away as the spirit attempted to knock him from the sky with an immense column of water. Kyvon eased his physical form back just a hair from the boundaries of his spirit form especially his eyes, allowing him to the spirit as she was. He caught his breath as he got a good look at her, she was beautiful.
Azula gulped down some pink mush as Ty Lee and Kyra filled her in on what had happened since she had been out. Huitzil had opted not to join them, which seemed to Azula an act of supreme rudeness. Kyra had dismissed it as harmless jealousy, which Azula didn't see as a worthy excuse, but she let the issue drop anyway.
"How long was I asleep?" Azula asked. Ty Lee thought for a moment, "Hmm, two, three weeks. Things have been really busy around here." Azula nodded, "Busy enough that you needed to grow wings?" Ty Lee smiled, slightly abashed and glanced over her shoulder at the relatively tiny hummingbird wings tucked against her back with a small blush, "I think Xex likes me. He was the one that suggested I be a liaison between the Kimarehto and the people they've captured." "And Lycaon just agreed to that?" Azula asked.
Ty Lee nodded, "Turns out they turn slaves who work hard enough to earn it into Kimarehto on a regular basis. You're the first person that's ever been turned for valor in combat though." "And the first to ever be turned by a Knight, let alone the King's brother," Kyra added. "He'll probably want to see you by the way," Ty Lee added. Kyra nodded and rose, "On that note, we should go. Lycaon will be delighted to know you're awake and he will wish to introduce you to his father and the King. We can talk on the way."
They found Lycaon in the large central tower, along with Mya and two other immense Kimarehto, one was covered in coarse fur of a particularly bloody red hue and bone armor similar to Lycaon's, the other was a white so immaculate it was almost hard to look at him. The white one wore a cloak of scales and fur and feathers and was sitting in a fashion that looked very similar to meditation. The red one watched Kyra, Ty Lee and Azula enter with penetrating crimson eyes. He began to growl, "State your bus-" He was interrupted by Lycaon moving in a flash to hug Azula, laughing quietly with delight.
The bloody red Kimarehto made a face and Mya patted him on the shoulder, "Don't worry Dad, he's just very happy to see her. You can say your thing in a minute." "It's not my thing," he grumbled, "It's protocol." Mya bounced and kissed him on the cheek, "Ok you can say your protocol then." The immense bloody red Kimarehto sighed through his nose as Lycaon set Azula down.
Lycaon looked at him, "Ok dad, now you can say your thing." The immense Kimarehto's eyes bugged out in irritation, but then he drew in a calming breath and growled in as threatening a voice as he could manage, "State your business and identity." It was hard to sound intimidating when there were three people in the room with their faces in their hands shaking their heads in resignation with smiles on their faces, but the immense red warrior pulled it off. Lycaon looked up, "Father, this is Azula, Princess of the Fire Nation, Ty Lee, supervisor of the Ninth Legion's captives in this land, and Kyra, niece of Jormund, lieutenant of the Tenth Legion. Everybody else, my father, Iath the Invincible."
Azula felt a smile trying to twitch across her face as Iath visibly deflated a little at his anticlimactic introduction, but she managed to restrain herself, "I am here to introduce myself and see Lord Lycaon as I was informed he wished to see me." A slight smile turned the corner of Iath's mouth, at least somebody knew how to follow protocol he thought, but aloud he said, "then you may stay, but do not disturb the king's meditation or I shall have to expunge you."
Mya snorted, "Basically all you have to do is not shove a stick up his ass, that's the only thing we've ever found that'll bring him out of it. We dyed him pink once. It was hilarious." Iath's expression was priceless as Kyra chuckled and Lycaon howled with laughter at the memory. Azula decided to spare the undoubtedly ancient warrior further aggravation by asking, "So, why is he meditating?" Iath smiled proudly, "The King is pursuing a spirit who attempted to stop our armies from making it journey here." Azula looked at the still white figure, "He's doing that...how?"
Lycaon answered quickly, "My brother's a Shaman, he can send his spirit self forward and leave his body behind to fight spirits more effectively. He seems particularly determined to catch this one although I'm not entirely sure why."
A blindingly white figure appeared beside Sokka's sick bed in the Fire Nation Royal Palace, "Aang, I need your help." Aang and Katara's heads snapped up, "Yue?" Yue nodded, "Yes. I am being pursued by one of the monsters we've been trying to stop. It's left its body behind and taken the form of a spirit. It can see me perfectly no matter what I do and nothing I've been able to do has been able to even slow it down. It's chased me all across the Fire Nation and I fear it will catch me soon if I don't get some help. You're the Avatar Aang, you're my best hope."
Aang stood up, "I'll do what I can, but, I don't know if I can fight a spirit." Suddenly a voice said, "You might not Aang, but I can." Katara and Yue lurched back in surprise as Avatar Kiran appeared, "Who are you?" "I am Avatar Kiran, the second Avatar. I have experience fighting spirits, perhaps I can help you drive this one off Moon Spirit Yue." Suddenly the entire palace shook, "It's here!" Yue cried.