Chapter 1: The Time Lord at the South Pole
A Time Lord finds himself on a planet where he doesn't belong and meets an interesting character.
(See the end of the chapter for notes.)
There was a whooshing noise as a brown wardrobe landed on the icy plains of the South Pole. Inside, the Time Lord Saltrallosimozonyith, or Saltrall, was putting on the finishing touches of his landing. He pulled up a monitor to check where he was to properly disguise his craft.
"That's odd," he said, pushing the monitor down. He went over and opened the door to see for himself.
"Huh, I don't remember Ochion being so... white," he said to himself as he closed the door and went back inside. He sighed and stepped back and looked at a thermometer.
"Or cold for that matter..." he said, "This can't be right, 15 degrees Fahrenheit?"
he pulled up the monitor again to check his location, only to find that he was on Earth.
"Well, that's just... wrong," he mumbled, tapping on the glass surrounding the TARDIS' compass, "I really gotta fix this damn compass."
He double checked some sensors to make sure that he was really on Earth. When he resigned himself to the fact that, yes, he was on Earth he sighed.
"And that's why you don't take a nap while the TARDIS is on auto-pilot, Saltrall," he scolded himself as he pushed the monitor away and smacked himself lightly.
He decided he should grab a coat before heading out,and after he did that he set the TARDIS to camouflage as an iceberg, and stepped outside.
He stepped out and locked the door behind him before looking at his craft. His attention was quickly brought to a long scorch mark along the right side of the ship.
"Um, hello, you weren't here when I took off," he said as he walked around and looked at it. He tilted his head in confusion and ran a finger along it.
He looked at it and licked his finger delicately before his face contorted into a disgusted grimace and he spit onto the ice.
"Aw Christ, that is definitely meteor debris," he said, still trying to get the taste of nickel out of his mouth. Once he felt like he got it all he ran his finger over the large mark again.
"But the real questions now are, why the hell didn't the shields stop you from hitting me, why didn't the alarms wake me up, and how the hell did you knock me so far off course?"
He sighed and wiped his finger off on his pant leg before going around to the front of his ship only to be met by an angry looking teenage girl.
"Um, hello," he said, confused and looking down at her.
"Who the heck are you, and why did you just step out of an iceberg?" The girl asked accusingly, narrowing her eyes.
"Um, science," Saltrall replied, looking over his shoulder at his damaged spacecraft, "a better question is why the hell are there people living at the South Pole?" He asked, looking back towards the girl.
"I live here, with the Southern Water Tribe, what the hell are you doing here?" she asked taking a step towards him, causing him to back up and silently pull out his Sonic Screwdriver.
"Look, the Earth I know, has a couple of research facilities on the South Pole, not a whole nomadic tribe!" He shouted.
The girl must have been offended, as her expression turned fierce and a pillar of water appeared to her left.
"I'll show you a nomadic tribe asshole!" She shouted, forcing the water at the Time Lord.
"Uh oh," he said softly as he reached into his pocket. Out of self-defense he pulled out his Sonic, pointed it at her, and pressed the button. It began to whir and glow green, causing the water to drop and dissipate over the snow, he then waved it in front of her arms and legs, immobilizing her.
"Hey, what did you do?!" She asked angrily, trying to move but finding herself paralyzed.
Saltrall walked up to her with his Sonic at his side.
"Sonic paralysis, I just froze your nerves to keep you from moving," he raised the Sonic and began to scan her, a small tinge of annoyance in his voice, "Don't worry, nothing permanent, just need you to stop trying to kill for two seconds,"
He flicked his wrist and the screwdriver opened at the top and he looked at the display on it.
"No, that can't be right," he whispered, turning away from her, he slapped his Screwdriver, "that can't be right at all,"
"What, never seen a waterbender before?" The girl asked him, smugly from behind his back.
He whirled around, "Waterbender?" He asked, amazed.
"Yeah, a waterbender, where the hell have you been?"
"Well, to be honest Velzia 5, stopping a Cyberman invasion, and now I'm supposed to be on Ochion relaxing, but I'm not so sure where I am now," he said as he walked over and picked her up, even though she was still in her bending pose.
"HEY! Put me down!" She shouted, trying to struggle but failing.
"Oh, calm down, will you? I just need to take you back to my iceberg for a couple of minutes," he replied before he shook his head at how stupid that sounded as he unlocked and opened the door to his TARDIS.
"Whoa, what is this place?" The girl asked with amazement as he set her down. She looked around as best she could since her neck hadn't been paralyzed.
Saltrall sighed before answering, "Well, guess I need to tell you. My name is Saltrallosimozonyith, I'm a Time Lord from the planet Gallifrey, in the constellation Kasterborous, at galactic coordinates ten zero eleven zero zero by zero-two from galactic zero centre, I'm 396 years old,"
He paused, "No, wait, I'm 609 years old," He said, furrowing his brow as he thought before he turned and looked back at Korra.
"Anyway, to answer your immediate question, this is my TARDIS, it's my ship, I guess you could say, but that isn't important I'm not supposed to be here."
"Then, what are you doing here?" The girl asked, slightly scared.
"I don't know! If I knew I would've left already!" Saltrall shouted before he took a deep breath and calmed himself down, "look, I'm sorry for kidnapping you, but I really need some answers. I'm trapped in a place with no knowledge of anything around me, but, let's just start with some simple questions," he said, sitting down on the arm of his couch, facing Korra, "What's your name, kid?"
"My name's Korra," she said, her voice was uncertain and he knew it was because she didn't trust him, "now Saltrallosimgoliath, or whatever your name is, what do you want to know?"
"Just call me Saltrall, it's easier" he said, "now, where am I?"
"The South Pole,"
"What year is it?"
"Alright," he said, nodding to not let his confusion show, "thank you. Now, I'm going to let you go, but before I do, know this: I can do a lot worse things than just freeze your limbs with this," he said, as he held up his Screwdriver, "So don't do anything stupid around me, alright?"
Korra just laughed, clearly skeptical, "Uh huh, sure you can," she said.
Saltrall sighed, and went over to his fridge and pulled out a melon.
"See this melon?" He asked, showing her. She nodded and he flicked his wrist, opening his Sonic Screwdriver before placing it the melon and pressing the button, letting it buzz for a couple seconds before the melon exploded. This time it was Saltrall's turn to laugh at the horrified expression on her face.
"Relax, I wouldn't use it on you," he said, shaking off his hand and closing his tool of trade, "you got guts, attacking a random stranger you just met, I like that."
Korra tried to calm herself down and just nodded slowly, obviously barely paying attention, staring at the remnants of the melon in his hand.
He pointed his screwdriver at her and pressed the button on the side, finally freeing Korra from her frozen position.
"Now please, go home and don't look for me, don't ask about me, heck, try not to think about me, okay? If I need you, I'll look for you," he said as she rubbed her wrists and looked around making sure everything worked.
"Y-yeah, sure, of course," she stuttered out before turning and running out of the TARDIS, leaving the door open behind her as she ran back out into the cold.
Saltrall walked over and stood in the doorway, smiling as he watched her run. He knew it was a dick move, but to be fair, she did attack first, and he meant what he said, he had no intention of using it on her. There was something... Special about her, he could feel it, he just didn't know what it was yet.
Eventually he went and sat down at the console of his TARDIS and ran his hand through his hair.
"Guess it's time to do some research," he muttered to himself, cracking his knuckles before pulling up a keyboard and his monitor.
I hope you guys enjoyed this first chapter, it's come a long way since I first posted it 2 1/2 years ago on fanfiction. The whole first part of this story, the one that follows along with book one of Korra, is already online, but I'm editing it quite a bit, so it will hopefully end up better over here.
Chapter 2: To Catch An Avatar
Saltrall deals with some painful and is forced to do his least favorite thing: ask for help.
Saltrall had been in his TARDIS for almost three days, researching pretty much nonstop, but he had basically no success, finding nothing in the Gallifreyan Archives, no matter what he searched. Finally on the third day the frustration got to him.
"GOD DAMN TIME LORD INTELLIGENCE!" He shouted, tossing his keyboard to the side, shoving the twisting monitor around, and punching the console.
He stood up and kicked the console too.
"ALL THE KNOWLEDGE IN THE FREAKING GALLIFREYAN DATABASES, AND NOTHING ON WHATEVER THE HELL THIS EARTH IS?!"
He plopped down in a nearby chair and rubbed his temples, thinking back to his time as head of the Chancellery Guard, always studying reports in the library, but he couldn't remember anything.
"Nothing, absolutely nothing!" He muttered softly. He thought deeper, however, and soon had an idea.
He retrieved the keyboard with his Sonic and went back to the console. He sat down, adjusted some settings and fixed the monitor before he typed in the phrase "1 AG," thinking back to the year, what was her name? Korra? said it was. After days of frustration he thought he finally had a lead.
His set his TARDIS to try and scan for any sort of database of any kind. He tried this for over 15 minutes, adjusting various settings until, right before he was ready to give up, he managed to find a single photograph. He got so used to seeing blank screens that he thought he was hallucinating when it showed up. He sat up and grinned. called Republic City, but he could only find a little in photographs, so he decided he would have to visit
"Freaking finally!" He shouted to no one in particular and he studied the image. He had no idea why this image was the only one that appeared, but he was far past the point of being picky. The photo was like a polaroid and it showed a cityscape and had small writing underneath it. He leaned in and squinted, trying to read the small text. Eventually he made out what it said, and he sighed and put his head down. It appeared to show a city called Republic City, it wasn't much, but he had a name, and that was all he needed. He searched for another half hour but found absolutely nothing else, so he decided he would have to visit the city in person. He ran a hand through his hair and realized he hadn't showered in days. He chuckled and decided that personal hygiene beat information for now.
After he got out of the shower he felt like he just regenerated, smiling, he walked in to his bedroom and got out his signature outfit.
He pulled on a pair of blue jeans, a black tee shirt, pulled on a sweatshirt, and finally pulled on his black hiking boots. When he went outside earlier he noticed that the snow wasn't all that deep, so he wasn't too concerned about that. Finally he grabbed a large winter coat, a gift from his last companion, a 1920s American suffragist who had a fondness with fashion.
He was making sure everything looked good when he realized that he had absolutely no idea how to get to Republic City. He frowned a little and sat on the couch he had in the control room. He thought about where it might be, but with only a name, and no map, he had no lead. Eventually he knew what he had to do.
He walked over and grabbed his Screwdriver off the console before heading out. The Sonic was a gift from his friend the Doctor, he wasn't sure why he went by The Doctor instead of his real name, but the Doctor always got defensive when he asked, so he eventually stopped asking. Regardless, before he was banished from Gallifrey he was a member of the Chancellory Guard and he had modified it in response to a threat against the Council. He managed to change the frequency for when it was extended, the frequency he demonstrated to Korra, and added a special button on the bottom in order to prevent any accidents from happening. He added the new feature as a means to kill anyone who threatened him, his loved ones or, at the time, the Council. By placing the extended tip against a body part, it sent out a sonic frequency that destroyed whatever it was against.
He frowned when he thought about the times he had been forced to use it on Gallifrey. It was the last of those times that had resulted in his, as it turned out, temporary banishment, as the Council begged him to come back to fight in the Great Time War. He gulped slightly and felt a cold sweat form on the back of his neck as the memories of the conflict came back to him. He sat down and took several deep breaths as he tried to repress the memories that had haunted him for years. He had never told anyone about those memories, no matter how much they prodded. He shook his head and eventually they had faded back into the part of his mind that let him forget them, albeit temporarily.
He stayed put for a few minutes before he felt comfortable and he stood and left his TARDIS. He pointed his Sonic in the air, and after a few seconds he heard it beep and he checked the display and found that the nearest settlement was a few miles to the north. Steeling his resolve he set out in hopes of finding Korra again, and to do his least favorite thing, ask for help.
After a half hour walk through the frozen landscape, which was actually warmer than he thought it would be, and found the village. Not wanting to draw unwanted attention he stayed around the outskirts and out of plain sight.
He walked around for several minutes until he finally found the person he needed. He moved into the village and waited between some huts. He found her practicing with fire today, instead of the, he assumed, usual water, which she suggested was her strong suit by her blue outfit and the fact that she lived on a glacier.
After about twenty minutes she took a break, and he took that opportunity to try to get her attention. He got out his Sonic and buzzed it several times. Korra noticed and turned to face the disturbance, her eyes widening when she saw him and she backed away a couple of steps.
He quickly gestured her over to where he was, but she just shook her head. Saltrall rolled his eyes and set his Sonic down and she cautiously walked over.
"W-what the hell are you doing here?" She asked, startled by the fact that he had found her.
"Look, calm down," he replied, before taking a deep breath, suddenly anxious, "I need your help,"
"Really? what with Mr. alien man?" She asked, calming down and looking him up and down, sizing him up, slowly gaining some cocky confidence.
Saltrall rolled his eyes, "Yes I do, I hate that fact, but it's unavoidable."
Korra just nodded a little and looked at him before she noticed the Screwdriver in the snow.
"Alright fine, what do you need?" She asked, crossing her arms in front of her and adjusting her weight onto one leg, "it's better than this boring firebending,"
"I need dir- wait, I thought you were a waterbender?" Saltrall asked, furrowing his brow in confusion.
"I'm the Avatar, I can bend all four elements," Korra replied, smiling at first but then letting it turn into a smirk as she let her pride take over for a few seconds.
"Fascinating," Saltrall said. He noted that she had a very cute smile, but then he realized how stupid he sounded and he shook his head, getting focused on her again, "how old are you?" He asked, really noticing for the first time how young she looked.
"16," she replied.
"Bit younger than I expected," he thought to himself.
"Anyway, what did you need help with?" She asked him, now fully comfortable in the fact that he was not in fact there to kidnap her.
"Oh, right, I need directions to Republican City," he said, remembering why he showed up in the first place.
"You mean Republic City?" Korra asked, letting an amused smile cross her face.
Saltrall groaned, "Yeah, yeah, whatever, can you help me?"
"Yeah I guess, if you're willing to pay," she said.
"Pay what, I'm a time traveler, I'm broke!" He said, pulling out his pockets for emphasis.
This made her laugh, "I was kidding, I don't need money," she said, "can't you take a joke?"
He opened his mouth to respond before he looked away, blushing, "Not really, no..."
He looked back at her and she was still smiling at him, and he realized that she must be comfortable now if she just cracked a joke at the expense of the guy she was rather uncomfortable to see 10 minutes prior.
"Don't worry, I don't want- actually, hang on, did you say time traveler?" She said, the smile falling from her face as his words sunk in.
"Yeah, and apparently, one time dimension crosser, if my current hypothesis is correct" he said, picking up his Sonic and twirling it between his fingers.
"So why do you need to get to Republic City?" She asked, raising an eyebrow.
"Well, as you know I'm not from here," He replied and she nodded, "so I need to..." He paused, thinking of the right word, "get acquainted with the environment."
Korra nodded in understanding, seemingly thinking, before responding.
"Sorry, we don't really get much news around here, so all I know is that it's far to the north, on the shores of Yue Bay, I believe it's called."
"Alright, thanks I can find it from there," he said, before turning around to leave.
"Now hang on," Korra said walking up to him and grabbing his arm, causing him to look back, "you come barging into my village asking for my help, and you don't even ask me if I want to come along with you?"
"Sorry," He replied, "lately I've been traveling alone, and I'm not sure how much I trust you just yet. Besides, you look busy."
"You can trust me!" She pleaded, tightening her grip and looking up at him with sad eyes.
He almost cracked and let her come along, but his resolve held and he put his hand softly on her shoulder.
"I'll be back, that's a promise, I can't say when, but I will be, and when I do I promise I'll take you with me," he said as she let go of his arm, her eyes still full of sadness, "but I still need time to adjust here,"
He started walking back to his TARDIS when he heard Korra sigh dejectedly and she went back to her bending practice. Saltrall looked back at her one last time before sighing himself and continuing on his way.
Chapter 3: Research of Old
After he returned to the TARDIS, Saltrall kept searching and eventually found he managed to find a map which showed him where Republic City was. He landed a few miles north in a park and cloaked his TARDIS as a large tree, making sure no one was around before stepping out into the park. He sighed at the mark on his ship, now a large patch where there was no bark, and rubbed it softly before making his way towards the city proper.
He decided he would have to ask for directions, since many people get uncomfortable around a strange person waving around a magical glowing stick through the air, and he had no money to buy a map, and he decided that it was too early for him to be getting arrested.
With a sigh he set forth. When he actually reached the city he was amazed at how modern it looked, in a very steampunk kind of way. There were cars, airships, and a bunch of other machines that he thought he'd only see online. He eventually reached a park along the edge of the bay and he stopped to sit down on a bench. He tried to think about where to find the library, however he saw a passerby and stood, deciding to ask for directions.
"Excuse me, ma'am, I'm not from here, can you tell me how to get to the Republic Library?" He asked, tapping the lady's arm, causing her to turn around.
He was initially taken aback at how beautiful she looked. She had dark, raven black hair and light green eyes. She was a couple inches shorter than him, but also taller than Korra, he figured she was about 5'10-5'11.
"Of course, it's right over-" She started to say as she pointed towards the city, dragging him from his thoughts.
Before she could finish, a shady person walked by and suddenly grabbed her purse, pushed her down and started to run away.
"Hey!" She shouted, falling into Saltrall, "that was my purse!"
"Don't worry, I got this," Saltrall said. He made sure she was alright before he started to run after the thief.
"You really... don't... have to," She said, but he was already in pursuit of the thief, so she walked quickly, trying to catch up to him.
He looked behind him as they crested a hill to make sure she was out of eyesight before he stopped, pulled out his Sonic Screwdriver, and zapped the thief's leg, causing him to fall with a cry.
Saltrall, put his Sonic away and walked up to him.
"Petty crime doesn't pay you know," he said seriously while crouching down next to the thief and picking up the purse that he had dropped.
"What did you do to my leg?" The thief asked, terrified, as he grabbed at and tried to move his leg but failed.
"Oh, don't worry, you'll be fine, just a little nerve paralysis, completely harmless," Saltrall replied before standing, he quietly pulled out his Sonic and fixed his leg.
"Now get out of here before I decide to call the cops."
The thief got up quickly and half-ran, half-limped away without a second glance and Saltrall smiled, feeling content at his recovery, and he turned around, twirling his Sonic between his fingers. He froze as soon as he finished turning, however, when he saw the woman standing behind him, watching him with a look of amazement in her eyes. He stopped twirling his Sonic and looked at it before looking back at her a few times.
"Um... I can explain," he said, quickly putting his Sonic behind his back and chuckling nervously.
"Wow, how did you do that?" She asked walking up to him, "can I see that tool of yours?"
"Um, I'd really rather you not," he said, cautiously moving it to put it in his pocket, but she snatched it from him before he could, "or you can just take it, that works too."
"Wow, I've never seen anything like this!" She exclaimed, admiring it and looking at it from all angles, "how does it work?"
"Well, uh, it's a very special tool," Saltrall began, trying to make it sound as un-alien as he possibly could, "you just press the button and point it at something, it can do just about anything you need it to, it can unlock doors, be used to scan resources in metal or other various tasks, but it doesn't work on wood." He furrowed his eyebrows, taking a mental note, "I should really fix that."
"Wow..." she looked starstruck, "would you mind if I take this and study it, I want to see if this can be mass produced,"
His eyes widened and he quickly took it from her.
"Um, sorry, I kind of need it," he replied, "also, it's classified tech, one of a kind, very hush-hush, and I keep its secrets very close to my heart."
She visibly deflated and slouched a little when he said that, so he quickly cleared his throat and put the Sonic away.
"Now I do believe you need to show me to the library," he said, trying to end the awkward conversation as quickly as possible.
"Oh right, sorry, come one, let's go," she replied, shaking her head and straightening up with a smile, and they made their way to car, "my name's Asami, by the way. Asami Sato, what's yours?" She asked when they reached her car and she turned and held out her hand.
"Saltrallosimozonyith, but you can call me Saltrall," he replied, taking it and shaking it.
"Wow, that's quite a name," She said, chuckling awkwardly, clearly caught off-guard by his foreign name, "I take it you're not from around here?"
"Nope, not even close," He replied matter-of-factly with a hint of a smirk. He always found people's reactions to his name amusing.
"Interesting," she said, walking around her car as she thought about what he meant.
They drove in silence until they the Republic City Library, a towering building full of books on almost anything. She pulled over and parked so he could get out. Saltrall grinned as he stared at the massive building.
"Thanks for the ride, Asami," Saltrall said with a smile as he got out of the car.
"No problem, Saltrall, and thank you for getting my purse back for me," she said, smiling softly before seemingly remembering something.
"Oh, right, before I forget," she searched her purse and pulled out a business card and handed it to him, "call me sometime, if you get the chance," she said with a wink before starting the car and speeding off.
Saltrall blushed a little at her flirting but smiled, he looked at the card and let out a low whistle when he saw how ornate it was. Along the top was written Future Ind. and beneath that as written Asami Sato, with a phone number and address.
He smiled and shook his head and put the card in his sweatshirt pocket with his Sonic and looked up at the building. He always loved libraries, big or small, but this rivaled even the Gallifreyian archives in size. He kept smiling as he climbed the steps and entered the massive structure.
Chapter 4: Truth
Saltrall learns about the world he's trapped in before receiving a nasty bump on the head.
Saltrall had been in the library for several hours, and by the time he left it was early evening and he just learned a whole lot about his current situation, when he was, where he was, what Korra was, and how, despite a long-lasting peace, everything seemed to be starting to fall apart around him.
He learned that the year was 169 AG, or After Genocide, referencing the Air Nomad Genocide. He learned of the Hundred Year War, the war between the Fire Nation and the world. He learned about the Avatar, the master of all four major elements, air, water, fire, and earth. He learned of Aang, the previous Avatar, and the current Avatar, Korra.
He growled softly when he first read about the events surrounding the start of that war, ignoring the confused looks he got from the people looking at books next to him. He had always tried to be a man of peace, even if that meant killing a few people to save many, and he had flashbacks to fighting the Daleks and trying to stop them from killing everything in the universe. Eventually he stopped reading and put the book back with a sigh because he knew that he couldn't go back to kill Sozin or to do anything to prevent the Air Nomad Genocide, it was a fixed point in history, he could destroy the entire modern timeline if he tried.
That was always the problem with time travel, some events are so momentous that they can't, under any circumstances, be changed. He had dealt with it before, but it never stopped frustrating him that the biggest events were atrocities that couldn't be changed.
He stood at the top of the stairs leading to the library and took in a deep breath and smiled as he looked around, that's when he saw a shady character walk by quickly, and he decided to follow to see what he was planning on doing.
He followed at a distance until he saw him turn into an alley, then he jumped on some boxes, and made his way to a nearby roof and watched him intently and he realized that this was a drug deal when another man walked into the alley and they began talking quietly to each other.
He kept watching and sighed, trying to decide whether or not to intervene. He had always despised drugs and alcohol after a couple of incidents where his younger brother overdosed on Gallifrey and another during his travels where one of his former companions was killed in a drunk driving incident.
He frowned and shook his head, trying to get the unpleasant thoughts out of his head and he sighed. Finally he decided to make a move and hopped off the roof and used his Sonic to paralyze the men's legs.
"Hey, what's going on with my legs?" One of them asked as Saltrall walked up to them.
"And who are you?" The other one asked, looking at Saltrall with fear in his eyes, "Are you a cop?"
Saltrall shook his head, "No, I'm not, don't worry," He took the drugs, "And don't worry, your legs are okay."
The guy who was holding the drugs tried to take them back. "Hey! I need those!"
"No you don't," Saltrall said, "all this'll do is get you in trouble, trust me, I've seen it far too many times."
The man still looked at him with fear in his eyes and Saltrall sighed and reached into his pocket and pulled out some coins that he had found around the city while looking for the library.
"Here, it's not much, but I hope this helps," he said, putting them in the man's pocket.
He fixed both of the men's legs and they stumbled out of the alley. Saltrall looked at the bag in his hand and sighed, putting it on the ground he activated his Sonic and destroyed it.
"God I hope that was the right move," he said to himself as put his sonic away and turned to leave the alley. He turned to his right and saw Asami leaving the restaurant that made up the side of the alley he was in and she turned towards him, making eye contact. He smiled softly and waved at her. She waved back and smiled before heading in the other direction.
He looked around and decided to walk in the other direction of her, he hadn't planned on doing anything else that evening but he didn't want to return to the TARDIS yet. He was bored and had walked around for about 20 minutes, just getting a feel for the city, when he saw another disturbance, this one much more serious looking. He saw two masked men turning down into an alley, carrying what appeared to be weapons of some kind. He didn't waste any time as he looked around and ran after them.
"Hey!" He shouted as he turned down the alley behind them. They whipped around at his voice and jumped up some crates onto the rooftop and Saltrall quickly followed.
As a part of his training on Gallifrey he had taken thirty years of gymnastics and yoga to ensure that he was strong and flexible enough to handle any situation. Even after he started traveling on his own he had kept up that routine and now was convinced he could go toe to toe with anyone his size or slightly larger in a hand to hand fight.
He jumped up onto the rooftop and was charged by one of the men. They were too close for him to use his Sonic so he prepared to attack them with his hands. He blocked the punch from the first one and grabbed his arm. As he was moving his arm he saw the glove on his opponent's hand spark to life with electricity.
"What the hell?" Saltrall thought to himself as he punched him in the jaw. He turned as his foe collapsed and was met by the other attacker who grabbed his shoulder and sent a sharp electric shock through his body.
"GAAH!" he exclaimed as he fell to one knee, holding his shoulder, pain coursing through his whole body. He growled and tried to stand back up but the man who shocked him kicked him in the chest and he fell backwards down into the alley, through the crates he had used to get on the roof, and was knocked unconscious.
Chapter 5: Threats and Violence
Saltrall investigates suspicious happenings and gets into a few fights.
He had no idea how long he had been unconscious when he finally came to. He rubbed his head and sat up and looked around. It had been at least a few hours, he assumed, because it was dark out and the lights from a restaurant across the street were shining into the alley, making him squint and groan as he looked away, his head throbbing.
He stood slowly, making sure nothing was broken and checking his pockets. He sighed in relief when he pulled out his sonic and tested it, making sure it still worked before he walked carefully out of the alley. It had to be around dinner time, he deducted, because all of the restaurants had delicious scents drifting out from their interiors. Saltrall's mouth watered slightly, but that might have just as much to do with potential head trauma as his hunger, but he decided against going into any of them because it'd be safer to just get something to eat at the TARDIS.
As he walked past a different alley he saw three shady looking men talking quietly. Curious and against his better judgment he grabbed his Sonic in his pocket and walked carefully into the alley. He was about to yell to get their attention when one of them saw him and alerted the others. Two of them were wearing strange masks and armor and the third looked like a regular citizen. The civilian ran in the other direction while the two masked men jumped on some boxes and onto the nearby rooftop.
"Son of a bitch, more boxes?" he mumbled to himself as he watched them go before running after them. He jumped up the same way they had and just as he landed one of them attacked him. The man punched Saltrall in the chest, making him stumble, but he blocked the next punch and swept his attacker's legs out from under him. Saltrall kicked him in the side to keep him down but looked up just as the other man threw a punch at him.
Saltrall tried to block his punch but was a second too slow and got hit across the face, causing him to stumble backwards. He didn't have time to recover as the man grabbed his shirt and pulled him close.
"Stay out of our way, or there will be hell to pay," the masked man said to him before throwing Saltrall off the roof, helping his cohort up and running off.
Saltrall cried out as he fell. He bounced off one of the boxes and landed on his side on the ground.
"Again? Really?" He groaned to himself quietly, staying on the ground for a few minutes, trying to assess the damage himself before he got up shakily. He felt his head and sighed when he only felt a nasty bump and didn't see any blood on his fingers, then he felt his pocket and let out a breath when he felt his Sonic still there. He pulled it out and scanned himself, but found that he had no serious injuries aside from the bump on his head and a nasty bruise starting to form on the arm that took the brunt of the impact with the ground. Sighing in relief, he put it away. Rubbing his head, he looked up at the rooftop he was kicked from, it wasn't very high but he had noticed the stack of wooden shipping crates he bounced off of and figured they must have done most of the damage, making sure hitting the concrete wasn't worse than it was.
He groaned softly when he tried to walk, but he had to stop and lean against the wall when he felt a throbbing pain in his leg and his head. He just sighed and closed his eyes for a few seconds before he powered through the pain as he stumbled out of the alley. He waved softly to some passing citizens who rolled their eyes, probably thinking he was some random drunk. With a sigh and a groan he started to limp back to the park where he had left his TARDIS.
As he was walking he saw a few people with dark grey metal armor walking around, one of them, an old woman with grey hair and two scars on her cheek noticed and walked up to him.
"Oh lord, please not a third time," he muttered under his breath, thinking he was about to get attacked again.
"Excuse me, sir, may I speak to you for a minute?" She asked walking up to Saltrall.
"Um sure," Saltrall replied, confused and still a little hesitant to talk due to his headache, "but can I ask who you are first?"
"Oh, I see that you aren't from around here, I'm Lin Beifong, chief of police here in Republic City." She replied, holding out her hand.
"Name's Saltrall," He replied, relief flooding his body and he shook her hand softly, and he realized he was hunched over slightly, and he grimaced as he stood up straight, "Now, what can I do for you?"
"Are you alright?" She asked him, taking a step towards him, getting ready to catch in case he fell.
"Yeah, I think so, anyway, I fought a couple of masked men on that roof over there, that's probably suspicious." Saltrall replied with a pained chuckle before getting dizzy and losing his balance. Lin was ready and caught him before he fell, though.
"Dammit," he muttered, "That's not good."
Lin helped him stand and wrapped an arm around his shoulders to keep him steady.
"We need to get him to the police station, ASAP, let some doctors look at him," she said, motioning towards one of the other officers with a nod, "go call the station and get a car over here, stat." The officer saluted and ran off.
The next few hours were a bit of a blur as he bounced in and out of consciousness, but he was awake when he was laid down on a bed in the police station and a doctor started looking over him. He watched him as he pulled out a stethoscope from his bag and came over to him.
"Here we go," he thought as the doctor lifted his shirt and pressed it against his chest. He smirked softly at the look of confusion on his face as he moved the device around his chest.
"Don't worry, doc, you're not crazy, I got two hearts," was all Saltrall could mumble as he closed his eyes and passed out again.
When he finally came to for good he was on a different bed and Lin was sitting next to it, waiting for him to wake up.
"Oh, Chief Beifong, I didn't expect to see you here," he said when he looked around and saw her.
"Kid, I gotta know, what are you?" She asked him softly, "Two hearts and basically no internal injuries from a beat down on a rooftop?"
Saltrall chuckled softly and began to tell an abridged version of his story. He told her about the Time Lords, how he had gotten there and what had happened that night.
By the time he was let out the sun was starting to come up, causing Saltrall to groan and rub his face softly. He hadn't minded answering the questions Lin asked him, he just wasn't expecting it to take so long. Too exhausted to walk back to the park, he discretely used his sonic to call his TARDIS to him, and landed in a nearby alley. He stepped in and smiled softly, going over to the console and inputting the coordinates of where it just was, before collapsing onto the couch and passing out as the ship took off.
He shot up a few hours later, panting and sweating. He sighed and rubbed the back of the his head. He'd had another nightmare, but this one was different than the usual ones, it wasn't a memory, it was something... else.
He couldn't even begin to describe it, it was just a jumble of pictures and shouts. He saw flashes of people he had known, both friends and foes, and even some he didn't recognize, but other than that it was unintelligible.
"Great, now my nightmares are turning cryptic," he thought to himself as he rubbed the sleep from his face and sighed.
"And I get the feeling I'll be meeting some of those people I didn't know rather soon," he mumbled as he stood up. That was a problem with being a Time Lord sometimes, their brains can learn things out of order.
He tried to forget about it as he stretched and groaned as his shoulder and neck popped a little. He went to the bathroom and realized that he hadn't even had a chance to look at the extent of his injuries from last night. Wincing slightly as he sat on the toilet lid, he pulled his pants off and looked at his legs. He looked at his legs and saw that he had a nasty bruise on his calf and several cuts and a bruise on his arm, and he had to assume his back as well, all that was combined with the nasty bump on his head.
He decided to stay close to his TARDIS, at least for the time being, and try to heal up and think about things that weren't his nightmares.
He took a quick shower and felt refreshed and relaxed. He'd forgotten about his dream too, at least for the time being, and he wrapped his leg with gauze and put bandages on the larger cuts he saw and he stood in front of the console, looking at the monitor as he searched for various things here and there.
Eventually he decided it would be best to modify his Screwdriver again. He had modified it once, right after the Doctor gave it to him, and he turned it into a weapon combined with a tool, but now he had decided that he no longer wanted it as so much of a weapon. He grabbed it off the console and headed down the main hallway to his workshop. He smiled as he sat down at his workbench and admired the tool for a minute before grabbing the blueprints he had drawn up last time he modified the Sonic and got to work drawing and erasing.
For almost three hours he had sat there listening to various CDs he had picked up during his journeys while working on improving his Sonic. He listened to heavy songs because he always worked best when he could feel the floor shake from the bass of a song.
He smiled as he put the last panel in place and set down the Sonic before standing up to stretch. His work had been complicated and grueling, but in the end everything came together. He was well known for being able to quickly fix mechanical issues on Gallifrey, and he hadn't lost his skills over time, finishing the improvements to his Sonic in just over three hours, where it would have taken most people around twelve.
Regardless of his ability he still had to test it. He completely modified the end, removing what he had called the kill button and he adjusted it to have different settings that could be adjusted by twisting the end. His hope was that he could use the pulse emitted by the Screwdriver to be able to scan people instead of just paralyzing them.
The main reason he did it was to see if anyone had a hidden weapon so he could prepare, just in case the situation arose.
Of course he also left the weapon function in, but now it was only accessible when the claws around the front were open, he decided that that just looked more threatening and he liked it that way.
Regardless of his stylistic choices, however, he decided that maybe it would best to not to go back to Republic City anytime soon. After getting beaten down twice by goons for a shadowy organization he knew nothing about, it seemed smarter to do research instead of jumping straight into the fray again. He chuckled when he thought about that and wondered how his teachers on Gallifrey would react to that, after years of complaining he was too headstrong and didn't think before he acted. He smiled and realized that he should just relax inside the TARDIS and recover a little bit more, or maybe explore the surrounding countryside, but that could wait for another time. Instead he went back out to the main hub, sat down, pulled up the monitor, and dove head first into a revolution he didn't even know about yet.
Chapter 6: The Waiting Game
Saltrall bumps into a protester and sees an old friend in the process.
This is where the story officially crosses over with the show!
Saltrall wasn't sure how long he had been parked in the little park, all he knew was that it had been a while. The fact the calendar was basically still a foreign language to him didn't help either.
He had taken the time to grow a beard and mustache as a part of his plan to try to visit Republic City more inconspicuously. He had gone back a few times to try and find more info about a so-called "Anti-Bender Revolution" that was occurring, and that he had partially inadvertently, but mostly completely intended to, gotten involved in. This decision, of course, led to him finding more bumps on the head and trips to the police station, either because he had been bumped by the Equalists, or because he had bumped the Equalists himself.
It took a while for Lin to trust him, especially after he told her his story, but eventually they managed to create a professional, yet odd type of love-hate relationship together. He loved going to the station and messing with her, which she hated. But on the flip side, she loved him for taking a lot of bumps so her officers wouldn't, which he was not a big fan of.
Despite this, he chuckled as he leaned back in his chair and remembered the last time he had been to the station.
"Well, Mr. Time Lord," Lin said as she sat down across from him in the interrogation room, "What did you do this time?"
Saltrall just sighed and shrugged.
"You know me, Chief, assault and battery, destruction of property, adultery, the usual." He said sarcastically, putting his feet up on the interrogation table.
Lin didn't smile or find it amusing.
"Cut the crap, you're an alien, but you're an alien in MY city, I can't have you causing so many problems, even if you're helping us track down Equalists, so just tell me the truth, and get your feet off my table," she said, shoving his feet of the table and back onto the floor.
Saltrall cleared his throat and looked down, his sarcasm having faded away "I, uh, I attacked an old lady because I thought she had a weapon." He responded truthfully.
Lin just rubbed her face and sighed.
"Just... Go," was all she said in response, her head in her hand as she pointed towards the door. He blushed and stood before walking out. He shut the door and listened as a grin spread across his face when he heard her break out laughing from inside the room.
He grinned and chuckled just thinking about it, and got up and took a quick shower before getting ready to head out. After he got out and and changed he pulled down the monitor on his console and set it to the external camera system to make sure no one was around. He'd had a few awkward encounters with people who saw him step out of a tree, and he tried to avoid as much as possible. Once he was confident that there was no one around he put up his hood and stepped outside.
It was much warmer than last time he went into the city, a warm front had moved in and had showed no signs of leaving any time soon, and he groaned and was tempted to put his hood down, but he thought about the possibility of an ambush and decided against it.
It took him about an hour to reach the city and he wiped his brow, cursing himself for his choice in fashion as he kept walking into the city.
He kept his head down as he walked, looking around for any suspicious activity until he found himself in the same park where he had first met Asami. He thought about that meeting as he walked and he realized that he still hadn't called her when he was pulled from his thoughts when he accidentally bumped into someone.
"Hey watch where you're going!" he yelled at Saltrall.
Saltrall just mumbled his apologies and kept walking. He looked the person over, however, and saw that the person was carrying a sign, which intrigued Saltrall. He put his hood down, beginning to sweat profusely under the sun, and sat down on a nearby bench, watching the man set some things up.
The person he bumped into, he realized, was a protester. He hadn't noticed all the posters set up with a picture of a masked man and other writings that, thankfully for him, were translated by his TARDIS' translation core. They were all talking about oppression of non-benders and how a man named Amon was going to save them.
Thanks to his constant meetings with Lin at the police station, plus his own research, he knew all about Amon and his "revolution" to stop the apparent tyranny of benders. Saltrall had learned early on that they were the ones who were constantly causing problems for him and the police.
He furrowed his brow and watched and listened to the man preach to a small, yet slowly growing group of people. He hated Amon, unsurprising considering the number of attacks from his goons he'd fought off and other terrorist acts he'd thwarted, but he had to give Amon credit, he had some serious charisma to have followers like this trying to spread his message.
After a few minutes of listening he eventually decided to get up and leave so he could rough up the man later. The thought of Lin scolding him at the station made him chuckle and he smiled as he turned to leave. At that moment, however, he saw a girl ride up on a large animal that looked like a polar bear and a dog put together. His eyes widened when he saw who it was.
"Korra?" He whispered to himself under his breath as he started to leave. He walked towards her slowly, moving off the sidewalk to get out of her way. He leaned against a tree and watched and listened to her argue with the protester.
He had to admit, he was impressed with the charisma of the non-bender, he kept the whole crowd against her the whole time, until they forced her to walk away in defeat.
She walked in his direction, and he suddenly grew a fascination with the tree he was leaning against. He stopped looking at the tree when she walked past him and they made eye contact. He smiled and nodded before he quickly walked away to prevent her from stopping him. He heard her stop for a few seconds and knew she was watching him, but she continued on her way quickly.
He waited until he heard her footsteps fade away before he ran after her. He thought he had lost her until he heard a commotion and ran to where the ruckus came from, only to find her standing in the middle of a destroyed road, surrounded by police officers and three, he had to assume, criminals standing on the inside of a building with a destroyed front. Suddenly she got on her polar bear dog and ran off, followed by the police officers. Saltrall sighed and shook his head.
"Dammit Korra," he whispered to himself as he rubbed the bridge of his nose. He looked around and noticed an old woman picking some things up, so he walked over to her.
"Excuse me, what happened?" he asked her as she stood up.
"Oh, the Avatar just showed up and stopped some members of the Triads," she sighed and looked down the road, "but she destroyed the street in the process, oh this is going to take forever to fix."
"Yeah that sounds like her," he said to himself, "I'm sorry about the clean-up, I hope it goes smoothly," he replied to the old woman, who thanked him and went back to cleaning up. He began to quickly jog down the road in the general direction that Korra went.
He looked down and stopped when he saw a tuft of white fur lying on the ground, no doubt from his friend's polar bear dog. He picked it up and examined it before he walked over to an alley and pulled out his Sonic. He had tested it several times on passersby of his tree TARDIS, and he'd also used it on some Equalist grunts who tried to attack him, which showed him some flaws in the system. He modified it a couple more times to get it perfect, but now he felt he had it just how he liked it.
He scanned the fur to find out where they were taken, and he got a lock on the police station. He shook his head and chuckled softly.
"Dammit Korra," he said softly while still smiling, "even now you're still getting in trouble."
Satisfied with what he found he made his way back out onto the street to begin walking to the station.
It took him about 20 minutes before he reached the police station. He went inside and sat down in the lobby, finding a couch against one of the walls, and nodded at the officer sitting at the desk, who smiled and nodded back. He sat there for a couple of minutes when he saw Korra leaving the holding area, an area he was all too familiar with, with a taller old man with arrow tattoos and a goatee. He saw that they seemed to be arguing.
"Tenzin, please, don't send me back home," he heard her plead.
"Old man's named Tenzin, got it," Saltrall noted to himself, figuring this would not be the last time they would meet.
"You blatantly disobeyed my wishes and the orders of the White Lotus," He replied with disdain.
"Katara agreed with me that I should come, she said my destiny was in Republic City," Korra replied, exasperatedly.
Saltrall saw Tenzin's face turn red in a furious embarrassment, which made him chuckle.
"Don't bring my mother into this!" Tenzin said.
That was when they turned away from him and he couldn't hear what they were saying anymore. He waited for them to finish their argument when a police officer brought them her polar bear dog and Tenzin thanked him and they began to leave.
Saltrall stood up and, being closer to the door, got there first. He held the door open for them as they left. Tenzin thanked him, while Korra again looked at him suspiciously. Saltrall, unable to stop himself, winked at her when she looked at him. Her look of confusion made him chuckle as he left after them.
He walked in the opposite direction of them just in case Korra put two and two together, but she didn't. He decided to go back to the library to do some more research, something he hadn't been keeping up on. He stopped by a newspaper stand on his way back to the library and looked at one of the papers. He sighed when he saw the month, because he still had no idea what it was in relation to what he knew. He knew he had been around for a while, but he never really figured out the specific date before, and he wasn't starting now. He knew it was becoming summer, but that was about it, so he equated it with late April and went with it. He pulled out a few coins and put them down, just a little bit of the stipend he received from helping Lin with the Equalists, and he grabbed a paper and continued on his way to the library.
Chapter 7: Return
Saltrall finds a secret in the alleys of Republic City and returns to the TARDIS, only he gets interrupted on the way.
Saltrall had spent the rest of the day in the library, getting engrossed in the culture of the world and only leaving when they kicked him out. He sighed as he left, his least favorite part of the day was always when the library closed. He was a nerd like that, always hungry for knowledge and more than happy to search for it himself if he needed to.
Although he was left a little more confused than when he arrived because in the time he had been there someone had showed up in the lobby and was taking pictures of everyone who walked in, or in his case, out of the door, he could only assume for library cards. The only problem was he gave no indication of that, which raised some red flags in Saltrall's mind. Saltrall stared at the man as grabbed his picture when it was taken, looking at him for any obvious signs of malice, and after seeing none he walked out, but not before using his Sonic to damage the camera. He wasn't sure why, despite the innocent appearance, something just didn't seem right about it.
He decided that it was time to return to the TARDIS and he began his trek home. He was lost in thought the whole time he was walking down a main road, glancing around a little and looking at his picture but he was still whistling one of his favorite songs, when he saw a familiar face leaving a restaurant.
He laughed softly and shook his head as he stepped into a nearby alley just as Asami turned in his direction. She stood there for a second, she could've sworn she'd seen some movement, but she shrugged and thought of it as nothing more than a trick of the light, and he waited for her to walk past him.
"There's a lot of alleys in this city," he thought to himself, looking around. It wasn't anything special, just a regular alley, some boxes against the wall of the building to his right.
"Boy, they have a lot of..." He thought, walking over to the stack, "boxes," he finished, pulling out his sonic and scanning the box. His eyes widened when he saw the results of the scan.
"Stupid wood," he muttered under his breath and he kicked the side of the box closest to him and watched as a bunch of Equalist weapons fell out of the hole that he made with his kick.
"Huh, and here I was wondering why every alley I've been in has had crates in them," he said, looking around again, trying to see if he was being watched by any Equalists, but he couldn't see any monitoring him. He smirked and ran out of the alley, using his sonic to find a nearby police officer.
"Officer Roe, good, I need you to call Lin and tell her to come out here, I have to show both you and her something," he said, panting softly from running.
"Saltrall, what are you going on about?" Roe, who was one of the few officers Saltrall was on a first name basis with, asked him, confused and concerned by the sudden incursion. Saltrall just rolled his eyes and grabbed his hand, dragging him with him as he ran to the alley where he found the weapons. Roe's eyes widened when he saw the stash and he ran off to get Lin.
"Well, this is an incredible discovery, Saltrall," Lin said, picking up a bola and standing up from her crouch and examining the weapon, "how'd you find these?"
"I noticed that almost every alley I've been in so far has had wooden crates leaning against a wall or something similar to that, and I finally realized how sketchy that looks, so I did a quick scan and now, here we are," Saltrall replied, smiling a little as he finished up.
"I can't believe I'm saying this, but good job," Lin said, looking at him and holding out a hand, which he shook.
"You should search all the alleys you can and find some caches," he said, letting go of the handshake, "who knows how long it'll be until they realize we're onto them and they change how they do it."
Lin nodded and looked at the other two officers standing behind her.
"You heard him, go organize patrols to search for more weapon caches, even if we don't stop production, just removing as many weapons as we can will slow them down," she ordered, nodding her head towards the street, and the officers saluted before running off.
Saltrall watched them go with a smile and talked with Lin for a few more minutes before he bid her farewell and resumed his trip back to the TARDIS. He made it to the park slower than he would've liked, but that was because he was enjoying the warm evening with a soft breeze that brought fresh air from the area outside of the city. He frowned and sighed, however, when he saw a small group of five thugs standing on either side of the pathway, watching him walk up.
"Well, well, well, what do we have here boys," one of them, presumably the leader of them, said as they walked up to Saltrall, who stopped once he was closer to them.
Saltrall grabbed his Sonic from inside sweatshirt pocket and sighed and rolled his eyes.
"Really? What is this, a shakedown?" He asked, looking around as they surrounded him.
"Well, we got a smart one today boys" The ringleader said, causing his cronies to chuckle softly.
"Just what I needed today," Saltrall thought to himself sarcastically as the group started closing in on him.
"I don't have anything on me, now I suggest you let me go before I get anymore annoyed, I have places to be, you know," he said, his voice becoming more serious.
This just made them laugh again as three of them materialized fire in their hands while the ringleader and his, right hand man, pulled out butterfly knives.
"Uh-huh, yeah we're so scared," the ringleader said mockingly, and he stopped walking forward when he was right in Saltrall's face.
"I'm warning you, I'm starting to get a bit angry, not just annoyed," Saltrall said, his voice becoming more angry as something inside him snapped.
"Oh look boys we're making him angry, whatever, he's not worth our time, just kill him," The ringleader said as he turned and started to walk away.
"Big mistake pal," Saltrall said as he elbowed the guy directly behind him. He proceeded to grab him and use him as a shield as the other two shot their fire at him. Saltrall threw his human shield towards the other benders before he collapsed, screaming in pain and rolling around as he was on fire, while he ran at the one of the others.
He shot fire again, but Saltrall already had his Sonic out and used it to dissipate the fire before punching him in the face, sending him sprawling on the ground. He immobilized the last one with his Sonic before turning to the two leaders.
"Hey assholes, your turn," he said walking towards them quickly, Sonic pointed at them threateningly.
"Shit!" They yelled out in fear before turning and starting to run. Saltrall just used his Sonic to immobilize them as well. He flicked open his Screwdriver and scanned them while they tried to move their limbs.
"You idiots should've listened when you had the chance," Saltrall said as he scanned them, "I'm a pretty chill guy most of the time, but you met me at a bad time, I've had a long day and I want to sleep, so just answer my questions and I'll let you go." He said walking over to the leader.
"I'm not telling you shit!" He exclaimed in defiance, which made Saltrall groan.
"Really?" Saltrall asked, frustrated, "I don't want to have to kill you, but I sure as hell won't let you go free if you don't talk."
Just then the other grunt who he beat down charged him from behind. Saltrall, hearing the footsteps, just sighed and stuck his Sonic out behind him and activated it, letting the guy run into it and Saltrall heard something crack and the grunt collapsed.
"See, that could be you too," Saltrall said, looking at the man's limp body. He turned back towards the ringleader, who just spit in his face with a sneer on his face. Saltrall didn't say anything, he just wiped his face off and put his Sonic against his temple and activated it, causing the man's eyes to roll up as his brain exploded.
He left him standing there, arms and legs immobilized as his head slumped forward, and walked over to his partner.
"What about you, you work for anyone?" He asked, pressing his Sonic against the man's throat.
"The Triad, w-we work for the Triads!" He confessed in terror.
"See! that wasn't so hard, was it?" Saltrall exclaimed, turning and yelling at the dead body of the other leader before turning back to the man in front of him, "now, did they order you to attack me, or was it just a random hit?"
"It was random, I swear!"
"Yeah, you're damn right it was, because if it wasn't, I'd find your headquarters and kill your leaders myself, now get out of here, and take your friend too." He said, unfreezing him and pointing at the other immobilized man behind them.
The guy started to run away but Saltrall thought and grabbed him by the collar of his shirt, making the goon choke slightly.
"Actually, not so fast," he said, dragging him over to the other goon. "You see this?" Saltrall asked both of them, pulling out the picture from his pocket, and the men nodded, "go tell your bosses that if they ever see this face walking towards them, turn the other way and run. Fast."
He put the black and white picture from the library in the pocket of the goon who he hadn't freed yet before reactivating the nerves in his limbs.
"Now get out of here before I change my mind," he said, pushing them away.
With those words he watched the grunts run back into the city. He sighed and shivered as he put his Sonic back in his pocket before dragging the dead bodies off and tossing them into bushes beside the path and he started walking again, putting his hood up and moving a little quicker than before. Even though there was nobody around he really didn't want to stick around any longer than he needed to.
He managed to reach his TARDIS without further incident, and he stepped inside and let out a sigh as he put his hood down and slumped down against the door. Even after almost 350 years of killing and maiming anyone who threatened the security of Gallifrey for a living he was amazed that he still had enough empathy to feel remorse once he removed himself from dangerous situations and calmed down.
He had always been worried that as a young Time Lord he suffered from a disease called situational pentamood disorder, a rare Time Lord disease that affects the actions and moods of the individual in certain situations before they return to their normal selves once the situation passes and they calm down. One of the primary symptoms is that the disorder stays with someone through all of their regenerations. For his entire life on Gallifrey he had been told that the disorder was a disease and every family who had a child with it was shamed by the community, and that scared him so much that he never went to a doctor about it. He believed he had it because that was the one thing he remembered about his personality when he was in his initial generation, but he never had proof. Now it didn't even matter anymore since he wasn't in the same universe, at least, that's what he had hypothesized.
He stood up and went and sat down by the console and rubbed his face. He hated his aggression, he had, not only for years, but through all his regenerations, but there was no way to stop it without becoming cut off from the world as a whole, and there was no way that was happening. No matter how he felt he knew that his empathetic side wouldn't let him become reclusive for any longer than a few months, he knew there were people who needed him, and he couldn't turn his back on them.
He turned to his console and booted up a side computer he had to try and clear his mind. His travels to Earth in the 21st century had piqued his interests on video games, so he bought a computer, modified the processor and hard drive, got a few games and set it up as a means to relax.
In this situation he decided to just play the solitaire game that came with it until he tired himself out, then he shut it down and went to bed, still trying to forget the events of the evening.
Chapter 8: Retribution
Saltrall catches up with an old friend.
Because he was a wanted criminal and revolutionary leader, Amon always kept himself informed about current events. Being the leader of the Equalist uprising meant he needed to know what was going on around Republic City, even if he couldn't get that information himself. That meant that when he heard that one man had seemingly started a war against the Triads, and even more that he had no bending powers to speak of, he was intrigued.
Amon and some of his top officers were looking out at Republic City from their secret base while he was contemplating their next move.
"Lieutenant, I have a mission for you," the masked man said, turning to face the man on his right.
"Of course sir, what is it?" The lieutenant replied, looking back at him.
"I hear that a man, someone who doesn't bend, has started a war with the Triads single-handedly, go to their headquarters and ask them for as much information on their number one enemy as possible, we need to know more about this character, see if he can be an asset to our cause," Amon ordered.
The lieutenant bowed before hurrying off to fulfill his orders.
Amon turned when he heard his lieutenant approach from behind and held out his hand, grabbing the file that his lieutenant was holding. He opened it and his eyes narrowed as he pulled out the picture on top and closed the file with a growl.
"Looks like our "asset" is in fact, a liability," he said quietly to himself.
"What do you mean sir?" The lieutenant asked him. He frowned when Amon showed him the picture, "I see."
Amon crumpled up the picture and dropped it before he turned and looked out the windows as he tried to think about his next move after this turn of events.
Back in the TARDIS there was an explosion and Saltrall emerged from under the console, coughing with black soot covering his face. It had been about a week since his last trip to the police station, despite murdering several members of the Triad who attacked him, he either hadn't left enough evidence for the police to suspect him, or Lin was turning a blind eye on it. Regardless, he decided it was time to update the TARDIS' chameleon circuit. This was what led to the aforementioned explosion.
"Right, don't connect the blue and red wires," he said with a cough, "causes minor explosion."
The TARDIS made a noise and he looked up at the time rotor before rubbing the console softly.
"Sorry girl, I know that must not have felt good," he said, frowning softly.
He stood up and shook his head before running a hand over his face and sighing. He had cleared away most of the dust and soot before he walked into the bathroom to clean it properly. When he emerged he decided that both he and his TARDIS needed a break.
"Eh, the console can wait, I need some fresh air," he said to himself while going to his wardrobe to put on fresh, unsinged clothes. He pulled on a blue polo and jeans before putting on a pair of black, high top Converse. He grabbed his screwdriver and put it in his sweatshirt pocket as he walked outside into the crisp evening air. It was around five he assumed, but a small cold front had moved in, making it colder that day than any other in the last few weeks. He took in a deep breath and sighed, taking in the mild temperatures and feeling the breeze on his face. He was looking towards the city when he heard a familiar voice from behind him.
"Going somewhere Mr. Time Traveler?" He heard the voice of the young Avatar behind him.
"Finally found me, eh Korra?" He said with a chuckle as he turned to face her. When he did she slapped him across the face, twice.
Saltrall shook his head.
"Alright, I deserved that," he said, blinking a few times and holding his cheek.
"Where the hell have you been?! It's been over a year!" She yelled at him, stepping closer and glaring at him, hands on her hips.
"Look, I know I said that I would be back, but things out of my control happened and I never got a chance to come back, I'm sorry, I'm so sorry," Saltrall explained, genuinely sorry for forgetting about his promise to get her. Korra frowned now and looked down at the grass.
"But, you promised," she replied, dejectedly before looking back at him, tears in her eyes before she glared at him again, "and you're a time traveler! Couldn't you have just gone back to right after you left or something like that?"
"Not right after, that would have caused a paradox, but other than that, sure," he said, running a hand through his hair before letting out a breath, "but like I said, out of my control, nothing I could do" he replied, leaning against his TARDIS. Korra sighed but nodded in understanding, wiping her eyes.
"I understand, I'm sorry for snapping at you," she said, chuckling softly as realized how silly she looked before she leaned next to him against the tree, "so," she started, having regained her composure a bit, "where's the iceberg ship?"
"You're leaning against it," Saltrall replied, unable to hold back a laugh when he saw Korra's wide eyed expression as she looked at the tree and back at Saltrall with a disbelieving gasp.
"But, it- how?" She stammered, walking around it.
"Time Lord technology, it's complicated," Saltrall replied, only a little smug, "We were the first ones to perfect the chameleon circuit for spaceships, I can make it change into whatever I want, or at least I would if the core worked, mine's on the fritz so I'm stuck as a tree for right now," he smiled as she made it back around, "this is a TARDIS, Time And Relative Dimension In Space, and she's my ship."
"I'll just nod and pretend I know what you're talking about," Korra replied, chuckling out of pure confusion.
Saltrall nodded and chuckled, he got that answer a lot in the past, and motioned with his head for her to walk with him, "come on, let's walk and talk."
They were walking through the park, and soon they were talking about the time that they had spent away from each other, catching up like old friends who hadn't seen each other in years.
"So what about since you got here to Republic City? I saw you in the park when you got hassled by those protesters, anything else exciting happen?" Saltrall asked as they sat down on a bench, causing Korra to blush, embarrassed by the memory.
"Shut up," she said before thinking about the first part of his sentence, "actually, hang on, that was you?" she asked, surprised. Saltrall smiled and nodded, "Wow, I didn't recognize you at all with that beard!" She said, running her hand around her chin.
"Good, I was going for the disguise look," Saltrall said, smiling, clearly proud of himself, "besides, it wasn't just the park, police station, too."
Korra just laughed, "I thought that was you! Actually, hang on," she said, her smile fading a little as she thought about it, "You were disguised, why were you disguised? Did something happen?" Korra asked, concern in her voice.
"Well, I've been here a bit longer than you and in that time I MAY have broken a law or two, also I may have gotten mugged a few times as well, became a police associate, possibly created enemies with one of the most dangerous gangs in town, you know, the usual," he said, rubbing his neck, trying to play it cool.
"Wait, what? Broken laws? Gotten mugged? Are you okay? What happened?" Korra asked, concerned.
"Well, the first time, I was in an alley, some people tried to mug me, excessive force was used, the details are kinda fuzzy, no one can say for sure who beat whom first," he replied.
"Details are kind of fuzzy, you assaulted A PERSON!" She exclaimed before he put his hand over her mouth.
"Don't say it so loud," he whispered intensely before turning his head and mumbling, "and it was two people,"
"And you just walked into the police station willy-nilly?" Korra replied after he moved his hand, dumbstruck.
"Well, you see, it's complicated," He replied, exasperated.
"Uh huh, I'm sure it is," Korra replied skeptically.
"I made a deal with Lin, the police chief, it happens, we have a working relationship," Saltrall responded before coming to a realization. "Hang on, why am I telling you all this?"
Korra just shrugged and said sarcastically, "I don't know, you just started talking."
Saltrall stared at her with an unamused face before shaking his head.
"I need to learn to shut up sometimes," he said to himself before looking back at her and asking, "so anyway, what have you been up to?"
"I joined a pro-bending team," She replied with a smile.
"I don't know what that is..." He said, confused.
She put her face into her hand and groaned, "you've been here over a year and yet you don't know what Pro-bending is?"
"I don't get out much!" Saltrall said, putting his hands up in defense, "and when I do people try to kill me," he added, shrugging slightly and rolling his eyes.
Korra laughed and rolled her eyes at his response, "It's fine, I'm just messing with you," she said, "I'll give you a ticket and you can come see the tournament I'm competing in in a couple of weeks, we're the Fire Ferrets, so you know who to look for."
"Awesome, I'm looking forward to learning more about it," he said smiling.
"I'll get it for you tomorrow, meet me at the library, okay?"
"Sounds good," Saltrall said, "see you then,"
With that Korra got up and stretched before she bid Saltrall goodbye and headed back to the city.
Saltrall remained seated and watched her leave while taking in a deep breath of the crisp, summer air before standing up and walking back to his TARDIS. As he was walking back he heard rustling in the bushes next to the trail, and when he turned and looked he saw what appeared to be someone hurrying away from the edge.
He pulled out his Sonic and pointed where he heard the noise. He activated it and looked at the screen, but nothing of interest came up, so he shrugged and kept walking.
In reality the figure who narrowly avoided detection was an Equalist who reported what he saw back to Amon, giving him all the more reason to spy on Saltrall, after all, he was talking with the Avatar.
The sun had slipped below the treeline by the time Saltrall reached his TARDIS and he looked around one last time before deciding that there was no one else around.
"Well, time to get back to work," he said with a dejected sigh as he opened the door and stepped inside.
Chapter 9: The Trooper
Saltrall meets a new friend, who is promptly kidnapped, and it's up to Saltrall and a few friends to save him.
Saltrall strolled down the streets of Republic City, whistling a happy tune. It had been a few days since he'd run into Korra in the park, and he had finally fixed the camouflage core, so he was enjoying the summer morning. That was when he heard someone shouting in front of him. He looked and he saw a strange person shouting in front of a statue. He walked up just as a small group of people walked away from the person, who was looking down dejectedly.
"You alright there, man?" Saltrall asked, stopping when he was next to him.
"No, I gotta make 29,999 yuan by the end of the week."
Saltrall whistled in exclamation.
"That's a lot of cheese," he said, pulling a few yuan out of his pocket, "hope this helps," and he flicked them into his cup.
From behind him, Saltrall heard a car stop and he turned his head to look at it before turning away from it. It was a red car, typical of the Triple Threat Triad. Saltrall gripped his Sonic Screwdriver in his pocket as they stopped.
"Hey Bolin, is that you?" the voice from the driver's seat called.
"Oh, hey there, Shady Shin," Bolin said, still dejected.
"Who's your pal here?"
"I don't know, he was just walking down the street and he gave me a few yuan," Bolin replied, making Saltrall smirk.
"Hey buddy, you got a name?" Shin asked Saltrall.
"I think you already know it," he said turning around, still smirking and crossing his arms in front of his chest.
"Oh crap, not you!" Shin exclaimed before turning to the others and muttering to themselves. Saltrall took the opportunity to grab his Sonic from his pocket.
"Hey!" Saltrall shouted, pointing his Sonic Screwdriver at them, "I'm still here, and wondering why you are too."
With that they drove off, yelling "go, go, go!" at the driver while turning the corner with tires squealing. Saltrall smiled and nodded softly before he turned back to Bolin and putting his screwdriver away.
"Saltrallosimozonyith, at your service, what's your name?" He asked sticking his hand out.
"Bolin," he said, taking it and getting pulled up by Saltrall, "how'd you do that? Those guys are tough and they booked it like they just saw a ghost."
"Oh that?" Saltrall asked, looking towards the direction they drove in and shrugging nonchalantly, "you could say we have some history, but that's not important, what is important is why you're raising money."
"I'm trying to raise for my Pro-bending team to compete in an upcoming tournament," Bolin said.
"Really? What team are you on?" Saltrall asked, remembering what Korra had said about Pro-Bending during their last meeting.
"Uh, the Fire Ferrets," he replied, thinking for a second as if he forgot what team he was on.
"Oh, you're on Korra's team?" Saltrall asked.
"I am!" Bolin said proudly, "Well, technically she's on our team. Do you know her?"
"Yeah, we've known each other for a while, she said she would get me some tickets to see you guys play," Saltrall said, explaining the situation, "who else is on the team?"
"My brother, Mako. Him and I have been pro-bending since our parents died," He said, turning glum and sighing when he said that last part.
"Oh I'm sorry, I didn't realize," Saltrall said before looking down and coughing, an awkward silence falling over them.
"Well I gotta go," Saltrall said, breaking the silence and holding out his hand, "I'm glad I could give you a little money to help out, you take care now,"
Bolin smiled and shook his hand, "Yeah, thanks, I hope to see you at the arena soon."
Saltrall smiled and started to walk away. He had just turned a corner when he heard screeching tires and a cry for help.
He spun around and ran back around the corner just in time to see Bolin getting dragged into the back of the returning Triads car.
"Shit," he muttered under his breath as he turned around and ran back towards them, grabbing his Sonic from his pocket as he ran.
Unfortunately, they saw him running towards the car and sped off before he could catch them, two of the benders shooting out water and fire to create a steam shield, forcing Saltrall to stop and cover his face. By the time the steam dissipated he was left holding his Screwdriver and cursing quietly to himself.
He sighed as he put his screwdriver away and stood there, panting.
"I need to find Korra," he thought to himself. His only problem was he didn't know where to find her.
Then he remembered Tenzin, and he turned to head back to the TARDIS just as someone bumped into him. He turned to look at the person, but they had already started running off. He thought the stranger was wearing a mask, but he didn't have time to worry about it now, he just growled in frustration for having to ignore that and he ran off in the opposite direction.
He made it back to his TARDIS and threw open the door before jumping over the railing of the console platform and sat down. He typed "Tenzin" into the search database and quickly found news articles, pictures, and all other sorts of information on him. He found out he was one of the Council members for the city, and he lived on Air Temple Island in the bay. Armed with this knowledge he got up and readied the TARDIS for transport.
Amon was bent over a table in his office, staring at a map of the city with, small, red pins sticking out of various places, denoting the locations of his future operations. He looked up as the door opened and a masked foot soldier walked in and saluted.
"You've returned, good," Amon said, straightening up and waving his hand, allowing the soldier to relax, "I assume your mission was a success?"
"Of course, sir," the soldier said, pulling his mask off, "He was preoccupied with a Triad matter and I managed to slip the bug into his pocket without any problems."
Amon smiled under his mask, even though it was hidden. "Excellent," he said, turning away from the soldier, "you're dismissed." The soldier saluted and quickly left the office as Amon went over to a large listening device and pressed a button on the top, remotely activating the bug, "now, let's see what we can't learn about you," he said to himself as the bug began recording.
Saltrall landed on the island and changed his TARDIS into a different tree that would blend in more with the surrounding flora before grabbing a light jacket and grabbing the small book of psychic paper he "borrowed" from the Doctor after their last meeting and smiled as he headed towards the door.
He opened the door and stepped out, locking the door behind him before turning around to see the doorway surrounded by a large contingent of soldiers.
"Oh, hello," he said looking at the group surrounding him and he pulled out the psychic paper.
"Allow me to introduce myself, Grigori Rasputin, Republic City Department of Nature, Tree Investigative Division," he said holding up the psychic paper, "I was just checking this tree here for any possible glitches and it has several, so I need to speak to the owner of this island..." He said as he began to walk away from the tree, still looking at the soldiers, "and none of you are believing any of this are you?"
The White Lotus sentries all began to bend their respective elements in response.
"I'll take that as a hard 'no' then," Saltrall said, "Well, if you'll excuse me I have a place to be so I'm just gonna..." He said before sprinting away from the sentries, who began to throw their elements at him.
Saltrall turned a corner and heard Korra talking to her friend, and crush, Mako, so he began to run towards the voices.
"Think something's wrong?" Korra asked.
"I don't know, Bolin has a knack for getting into stupid situations, See you... what the?" Mako began saying, but stopped as he heard the commotion approach and get louder.
"Ah, Korra! There you are!" Saltrall shouted as he ran towards them with the sentries in hot pursuit.
"Oh no," Korra said, facepalming.
Saltrall ran between the two of them and Korra sighed.
"Stop it! He's a friend, calm down," She said, stopping the sentries.
"But Korra, he just stepped out of a tree that appeared out of thin air," the lead sentry tried to explain.
"I don't care where he came from, he's a friend, you're dismissed back to your posts," she said, causing the sentries to bow and walk away.
"Well... at least... I know that... I'm in the right place..." Saltrall said in between deep breaths as he leaned against a wall, giving her a thumbs up, "thanks Korra, I'm gonna take a nap," he finished before collapsing into a heap.
He awoke later, panting, in a room he didn't recognize, and, in a reflexive panic, sat up fast, accidentally headbutting Korra and Mako at the same time.
"Ow!" Saltrall exclaimed, falling back onto the bed, rubbing his forehead, "Who just leans over someone's bed so close like that?"
"You started to stir, we, well she, got concerned," Mako said, frustrated, he looked over at Korra and held his own head.
"Yeah, well look string bean," Saltrall said, sitting up again looking over Mako, "that was still dumb."
He groaned and let go of his head, "you got a name, kid?"
"Kid? Who are you calling a kid? I look as old-" Mako began, leaning towards Saltrall.
"Easy Mako," Korra said, grabbing his shoulder and pulling him back. The mention of his name reminded Saltrall of why he'd come here in the first place, causing him to perk up.
"Mako? As in Bolin's brother, Mako?" He asked, looking at him, causing him to nod hesitantly, "ha! good, we're all together then," Saltrall said rolling out of the bed and landing on his feet, "Bolin's in trouble."
"What? What do you mean he's in trouble?" Mako said angrily, trying to take a step towards Saltrall, only to be stopped by Korra again.
"I mean some goons from the Triads kidnapped him!" Saltrall said, looking around and grabbing his screwdriver off the ignoring the angry look and walking towards the door, "come on, we gotta hurry."
"No, what the hell are you talking about?" Mako said, breaking out of Korra's grip and walking towards Saltrall, "you just show up here, pass out and then claim my brother is in trouble. He's the only family I've got left and I'm not going anywhere until you start talking!" He shouted, grabbing his arm.
Saltrall spun around and pulled out his Sonic in one fluid motion, pointing it at Mako's face.
"I swear to God, I will knock you unconscious with a push of a button and drag your sorry ass outside if I have to," Saltrall said, threatening him, causing Mako to let go of his arm and take a step back, but Saltrall kept glaring at him.
"And never grab me like that again, or else I will personally make sure you never have two functioning arms again," he shot at Mako before he closed the gap with Mako and whispered in his face, "I've killed for less, just so you know," before he turned and stormed out of the room.
Mako gulped slightly and stepped back, intimidated by the threat, but he felt Korra's hand move to his shoulder and he looked over at her.
"What the hell is with him?" He asked her, slipping out of her grasp softly, "and how do you know him?"
"It's a long story, and he's not usually so aggressive, I'm sorry about that, now come on, I don't have time to explain, we need to get Naga and head over to the city," Korra replied. Mako nodded and they ran out of the room after Saltrall.
Saltrall fumed quietly as he ran back to the TARDIS, slamming the door behind him, causing a few things to shake as he stormed over to the console. He sat down and finally caught his breath and calmed down.
"Stupid, stupid humans," he said, emphasizing the second stupid, "always ask questions first, act later, tell someone their brother's in trouble, what do they do? Ask questions," he mumbled as he shook his head and pulled the monitor over to where he was seated.
"Alright, girl, let's get the show on the road," he said, cracking his knuckles before twisting a few diddlies and pulling a lever and vanishing towards the city as he put his feet up on the console.
Chapter 10: Rescue
Saltrall and Co. go on a rescue mission.
Saltrall was sitting on a bench by an alley, keeping his head down as he waiting close by the secret entrance to the Triads headquarters. A few hours had passed since he had gotten Korra and Mako to come along with him, but they had apparently taken the scenic route because they still hadn't arrived. He looked to his right as some steam started blowing past him from a nearby sewer grate, and he was staring at the partly decrepit building that housed the Triple Threat Triad. He had been here many times, mostly reconnaissance, and he was concerned about the lack of guards by the door.
He heard a commotion to his left and whipped around, drawing his Sonic, only to sigh in relief and put it away when he saw Korra and Mako arrive on Naga, and he saw the fire ferret Bolin was performing with earlier perched on Mako's shoulder. They walked over and dismounted Naga.
"Took your sweet time to get here," Saltrall said, standing and facing them. He frowned a little at Mako for a couple seconds before turning his attention to Korra, "decide to take the scenic route?"
"Saltrall, calm down, not all of us have technology that can teleport through space and time," she replied, a tad aggravated at how Saltrall had been acting earlier, "I explained the situation to Mako, he's sorry for snapping at you earlier, she elbowed him sharply, "right Mako?"
"Right, yeah," Mako said, grimacing a little at the sudden impact before taking a step forward, "I'm sorry for how I reacted earlier, but as I'm sure you can imagine, I was a little overwhelmed by what you'd said," he held out his hand towards Saltrall, "so, truce?"
Saltrall stared at him for a few seconds, examining his face for any signs of insincerity before grabbing his hand and shaking it once, firmly.
"Truce," he said deadpan as he let go of his hand and turned towards the building, Mako and Korra taking up positions on either side of him.
"Something's not right, there are usually thugs posted out front. We better be cautious." Mako said as they walked over to the door.
"Yeah, you don't need to tell me twice, I'll stay out here and watch for any guards or something, you guys go inside," Saltrall said, drawing his Sonic and walking to the end of the alley, watching for any signs of trouble.
He watched Korra kick in the door as she and Mako went inside. He turned around and his eyes widened as three Triad goons charged him. He raised his Sonic but it was too late, they attacked him and knocked him to the ground before throwing him into a pile of cardboard boxes, his head hitting the brick wall, dazing him slightly, as a truck started nearby and the goons bolted towards the sound. Korra and Mako ran back outside when they heard the truck and ran over to Saltrall, who was holding his head.
"Saltrall, are you alright? What happened?" Korra asked, kneeling down by him.
"I'm alright, some goons attacked me, I think," he replied, trying to stand, but he felt dizzy and he groaned and stayed on one knee, "you guys go ahead, they hit my head pretty good."
They nodded and ran after the truck, leaving Saltrall there, as he groaned and sat back down. He heard an explosion and saw Naga run past him before he closed his eyes, laid down and passed out.
He was awoken a few hours later when Korra bended some water into his face. He stirred and opened his eyes, groaning and squinting in the morning light. He rolled onto his back, and closed his eyes tight before opening them again.
"Ugh, my head is killing me, how long was I out?" He asked, sitting up and rubbing his temples.
"A few hours at least, but we think we know where Bolin was taken," Mako, who was crouching beside him, said as he stood and stuck out his hand.
Saltrall took it wearily and Mako helped him up slowly. He leaned against the wall to stabilize himself as Mako handed him a leaflet.
"Where'd you get this?" He asked, furrowing his brow as he looked at it, "and what's 'the Revelation?'"
"There was a protester in the park and we decided to pay him a visit," Korra said, looking over at Mako and smiling. Saltrall rolled his eyes because, even in his groggy state, he knew exactly what that meant. "Now come on, we need to create a plan."
Saltrall nodded and watched as Mako got on Naga, but he grabbed Korra's arm to stop her and she turned and looked at him.
"What's up?" She asked, but Saltrall just motioned to side with his head, before he looked at Mako.
"I have to tell Korra something real quick, we'll be over here for a minute if you need us," he said to Mako, who was watching them. He frowned a little before nodding and looking away.
"Sure, whatever," he said flatly, leaning forward and patting Naga's neck. Saltrall pulled on Korra's arm softly and led her over away from Naga.
"What is it, what's wrong?" She asked him again, quieter than before, as he stopped. He took a deep breath and looked at the ground as he ran a hand through his hair.
"I'm sorry, for how I acted back on the island, I mean," he started, looking up at her, "I went into panic mode for a few seconds and I didn't mean to, it won't happen again."
"What do you mean 'panic mode'?" Korra asked, confused, but Saltrall just smiled sadly and shook his head.
"There's a lot you don't know about me, Korra," he said, resting a hand on her shoulder softly, "hopefully I can tell you more, but just know that I never hurt my friends on purpose."
"What about Mako, is he your friend? And are you going to apologize to him?" she asked, a bit more concerned than she might've meant as she drew back a little after saying it.
"You trust him, and that's enough for me right now," he replied, moving his hand and looking at him on Naga, "and I'll apologize when his brother's safe, now come on, let's go, we've left him waiting long enough."
The two of them headed back over to Naga and Mako helped Korra up while Saltrall climbed on by himself.
"Hang on, what about your TARDIS?" Korra asked, looking over her shoulder at Saltrall.
"Chameleon circuit is still on the fritz, I need to do a bit more work on it, can't risk it not camouflaging, no one will know where it is but me, it's safe," he replied seriously.
Korra nodded softly and they headed out. They stopped and rested on a bench under a trolley bridge to take a break. Mako and Korra sat on a bench while Saltrall was leaned up against Naga, and they were all looking at the leaflets.
"Why didn't the Equalists put a location on these?" Korra asked puzzled.
"Probably because they didn't want just anyone waltzing into their big "Revelation", whatever that is." Mako replied.
Saltrall scratched his chin, "I bet the information is on here somewhere, look at the backs."
Mako grabbed two more of the leaflets they'd collected, "Yeah, look, there are four different images."
"It looks like it's a map," Korra said excitedly.
The two of them grabbed some more leaflets and put them over a map hanging on the nearby wall, proving that it was a map. Saltrall walked over to them and looked at it.
"It would appear that they are," Saltrall pointed at a factory on the map, "and it looks like we have our meeting place."
They all looked at each other and smiled before getting their things together and hopping on Naga again.
Amon watched as some of his men were preparing the site for their big "Revelation" later in the evening.
"Sir, we have the boy," his lieutenant said, walking up beside Amon, who turned and saw two other Equalists tossing Bolin's unconscious body onto the ground with a hidden smirk.
"Very good, and thanks to our little Avatar friend, we know a lot more about our mysterious "Time Lord" problem," he said, pulling out a recorder that one of his spies had given him earlier, "those fools were so busy trying to find the Triads they didn't even notice our spy tailing them."
The lieutenant smiled and took it from Amon and began to listen to it.
"All we need to do now is take out the problem at the source," Amon said, turning back towards Bolin, "and our acquisition here will be the perfect way to accomplish that."
Saltrall, Korra, and Mako were standing outside the factory site that housed the meeting, all wearing disguises making them look like regular people, even Saltrall, who owned very little in the way of local clothing, had put on an outfit that helped him blend in.
Saltrall stayed back as Mako and Korra made their way to the doorman. Mako showed their invitation and they went inside. After they were inside Saltrall took a deep breath and let it out slowly, pulling out his psychic paper and hiding his open Sonic in his sleeve, and approached the doorman.
"Invitation?" The doorman asked Saltrall.
"Of course, here it is," Saltrall said, holding up the psychic paper and the doorman nodded in approval.
"The Revelation is upon us, my brother," he said, stepping aside.
"It is," Saltrall said, starting to walk past him before stopping and letting his Sonic drop out of his sleeve into his hand. He grabbed the doorman by his throat and put it against his head, activating it and killing him in seconds.
"It just comes to some of us faster than others," he said coldly, letting the body drop as he put his Sonic away and walked inside, closing the door behind him and using his sonic to permanently lock it.
He walked through a smaller hall and made his way up a flight of stairs and he looked for Mako and Korra from a catwalk, but all he could see was a large crowd of non-benders, regular people, he assumed they'd be in his world, who were yelling at whatever was happening. He stood against the railing and tried to see what the event actually was until he saw movement from the side of the crowd.
"Korra..." He said softly before running to his right, down the catwalk and onto the main part of the second floor.
He saw her run into a side corridor and he cursed softly to himself as he looked for a way down. He saw a tarp strung up to cover something about ten feet below him, and he groaned, remembering all his bumps off of rooftops, and looked for any other ways down. When he didn't see any he sighed and hopped over the railing.
He landed on his back with a soft grunt, the tarp thankfully held his weight, and he rolled off and onto the floor and looked around before he ran after her. He looked around for her until he heard her struggling from around a corner. He backed up against a wall and looked around the corner, only to let out a sigh of relief when he that she was alone and struggling to turn a wheel to open steam pipe.
He walked up to her and she stopped what she was doing and whipped around, arms up and ready to attack. Saltrall just held his hands up in front of him, and she let out a sigh.
"Dammit Saltrall, I thought you were a guard," she said, rubbing her forehead and going back to the pipe.
"Sorry, about that," he said, blushing lightly out of embarrassment and watching her struggle, "need some help?" He asked, leaning over her shoulder. She groaned as she tried to turn it one last time before stepping aside so Saltrall could get in there.
He pulled out his Screwdriver and used to it on the wheel, causing it to spin uncontrollably and forcing the three valves in front of them to burst open, releasing a bunch of steam. Saltrall ducked as Korra began to bend it into the main room.
"Thanks Saltrall," she said. Saltrall just nodded and moved out from under the trail of steam.
"You're welcome, now let's go save Bolin," Saltrall said with a smile. Korra nodded and they ran back towards the main room. They ran in just in time to see Mako slump to the ground, getting knocked unconscious by a soldier while Amon's lieutenant stood over Bolin.
"You benders need to understand, there's no place in this world for you anymore," he said.
"Sorry, pal, I'm not a bender," Saltrall said while Korra growled and sent a rock pillar flying into the lieutenant. Saltrall smirked and watched before he charged towards the other soldier.
"I wouldn't count us out just yet!" She exclaimed running up to the unconscious Bolin while Saltrall fought the soldier. She looked over Bolin, making sure he was alright, before turning towards Saltrall just in time to see him standing over the limp body of the Equalist, his Screwdriver still lit up.
"Naga!" She shouted, causing her faithful companion to come running. Saltrall ran over and picked up Mako who began to regain consciousness.
"Ugh what happened?" Mako asked, looking around groggily.
"You're alright, I got you," Saltrall said, looking at him and slapping his chest softly before helping him walk over to Korra and Naga.
Korra helped Mako up into the saddle while Naga grabbed Bolin in her jaws. Korra hopped on her back as well, making sure Mako was secure before looking over at Saltrall, who had walked back over to the corpse of the Equalist.
"Saltrall, come on!" Korra shouted to him, causing him to turn back to face her.
"You guys go ahead, I'll catch up!" He shouted back.
"Saltrall, no we-" Korra started before being interrupted, by more shouting from a hallway, "Just go! I can handle myself if I have to!" Saltrall yelled back. Korra opened her mouth to argue before she just nodded slightly and Naga ran off. Saltrall pulled the mask off of the Equalist and examined it, but he didn't have enough time to really examine it as more Equalists ran into the chamber, forcing him to drop the mask and run off after Naga.
Saltrall stopped after running outside and slamming the door shut behind him. He turned and used his Sonic on the door, cleansing it of any foreign substances and destroying the locking mechanism, making it impossible to open without breaking it down. He looked around quickly, feeling like he was being watched from a rooftop before running off when the Equalists started pounding on the door.
Unbeknownst to any of them, Amon and some of his men were watching them, standing on top of the building, watching them escape.
"There goes our little alien friend," He said to the soldier standing next to him, "Follow him, I want to know exactly where he's going."
The soldier saluted and ran off. Amon waved his hand and the others followed after the first one, leaving Amon alone to stare over the city and consider his next move.
Back on Air Temple Island the three men were sitting down, resting outside, looking over the bay while Korra told Tenzin what happened. They sat in silence until Mako spoke up.
"Hey Saltrall?" He said, looking over at the Time Lord to his left.
"What's up?" He asked, looking over at him.
"I just wanted to say thanks, a lot, for today. If it weren't for you I don't know what would've happened to Bolin," he said, smiling and grabbing his brother's shoulder.
"Neither do I, but I'm glad you guys saved my bacon," Bolin chimed in, looking at Saltrall.
Saltrall smiled and nodded, "I help people, it's what I do, especially when it's my friends who are in trouble."
"So we're your friends now?" Bolin asked, grinning.
"Yeah, yeah I guess you are," Saltrall said, smiling and chuckling, before his smile and he got serious.
"And Mako, I'm sorry for snapping at you when we first met, I've had bad experiences in the past and I went into panic mode for a few seconds," he said seriously. Mako nodded and smiled softly.
"It's alright, I understand, water under the bridge, Bolin's safe and that's all that matters," he replied and held out his hand, which Saltrall took and shook with a smile.
Just then Saltrall turned and looked behind them when he heard footsteps approaching and saw a serious looking Korra walking over.
"Well, I talked to Tenzin, and I don't know what happens now," she said, sitting down, "but it isn't good."
The three guys nodded in agreement and Saltrall sighed as they looked out at the city, wondering what will lay before them in the future.
Chapter 11: Reunion Part I
Saltrall has a few meetings with some friends.
Later that night, after Mako and Bolin returned to the stadium where they lived Korra began to go inside, but stopped and turned when she heard Saltrall follow her
"Aren't you gonna go back to your TARDIS?" Korra asked, leaning against the door-frame as Saltrall stopped walking.
"I'll get it in the morning," Saltrall said, smiling a little, "it's not that difficult for me to retrieve."
"Alright..." Korra said, furrowing her brow in confusion as Saltrall walked past her into the house.
"I'll sleep on the couch," Saltrall said, patting her on the shoulder, "I mean, if that's alright with you, obviously."
"Okay," She said with a soft smile, "come on, I'll show you around."
After the small tour Saltrall bid Korra goodnight and laid down on the couch and was soon asleep within minutes. He slept soundly until he was awoken early the next morning by the scream of Korra from a few rooms over.
Saltrall shook his head, still still dazed and tired until he realized what he'd heard and he jumped up and ran into her room, Screwdriver drawn. He saw her sitting up in her bed, breathing heavily, and he ran over to her.
"Korra, are you okay?!" He asked, concerned, as he put his Sonic in his pocket and crouched next to her.
She looked at him, sweat dripping down her face, eyes slightly wild, and he put a hand on her shoulder softly.
"Hey, Korra, it's me, you're okay," he said, softly, shaking her shoulder softly once, trying to calm her down.
When it finally hit her who she was looking at she calmed down and her eyes softened as she nodded softly, still breathing hard.
"It's... It's alright, Saltrall. I just had a bad dream" She said, gulping slightly, calming down and forcing a smile.
"Are you sure?" Saltrall asked seriously, but she nodded, "alright, I'll be in the other room if you need me," he said, standing up.
He walked out, looking over his shoulder before he left and Korra watched him leave until Naga took her attention away from him. She sighed and laid her head against Naga, trying to keep her composure, only to have a couple tears fall down her cheeks.
Saltrall went back to the couch and sat down, reaching underneath it to grab his boots. As he reached down however, he felt like he was being watched. He sat up and looked out the window in front of him, but he saw nothing. He focused and listened for any sign of movement, but all he heard was the sound of the wind blowing through the bushes and trees.
He quickly tied his boots and walked out the front door. He stood in the doorway and looked around again, but still didn't see anything. He decided to be just a little more cautious and he walked around the house, examining the bushes and scanning them with his Sonic, just to make sure. When he was finally convinced it was his imagination he gave up searching.
He decided it would be a good idea to visit the brothers to make sure they weren't too shaken up by the previous day's events. He pulled out his Sonic and changed the frequency. He activated it and his TARDIS appeared in front of him.
"Every time I think I have you figured out you have a new trick up your sleeve." He heard from behind him. He jumped slightly but smiled and turned and saw Korra standing against the corner of the house.
"Yeah, I'm an enigma," he said, opening the door, "you never know what I'll do next."
"Where are you going?" she asked standing up straight and walking over to him.
"Nowhere in particular, just into town, wanna come with?" he asked, stepping inside and resting against the door-frame.
"No, I gotta train, thanks for the offer though," Korra replied, smiling.
"Little early for that, don't you think?" He asked, curious as to why she'd be out so early to train.
"Yeah, I like getting up early," she replied calmly. If she was lying, she was very good at it, so Saltrall shrugged.
"Suit yourself. But hey, I got an open door policy, well as long as I'm inside, that is," He said looking away from her towards the end of his sentence before facing her again, "see you soon," he said, waving goodbye and closing the door.
He walked over to the console and sat down with a sigh. He ran his finger along the edge of a panel and looked at it.
"Jeez, it's been less than a day and you're already dusty," he said, "I can't leave you anywhere," he fake scolded his machine while slapping it lightly.
"Ah, you know I'm kidding, girl, now come on, let's go hit the town." And with that he pulled a few levers, spun some diddly-doos, and pressed a button before gripping the console as it shook with the force of the take off.
Korra stood and watched the machine disappear in front of her. She shook her head and wondered just how she got mixed up with such a strange man, but she let her smile fade as she walked away to her training area.
Later in the evening Saltrall was sitting inside the TARDIS after catching up with Mako and Bolin, listening to the local radio station lackadaisically while he read a book. His attention was ripped from the book when he heard Amon's voice suddenly appear on the radio.
He jumped up and listened to the radio intently.
"...As you have heard, the Republic Council has voted to make me public enemy number one, proving once again that the bending oppressors of this city will stop at nothing to quash our revolution,"
Saltrall rolled his eyes and used his Sonic to short out the radio.
"Public enemy number one, what the hell is he talking about?" Saltrall asked himself, putting his book down as he thought about it and spun in his chair to face the console and setting the TARDIS' coordinates back to Air Temple Island, "Tenzin has some explaining to do."
When the TARDIS landed he made sure he grabbed his jacket as he opened the door and walked out. He turned to close it and walked straight into Korra's back as he turned around.
"Ow, sorry, my bad!" He said, rubbing his chest softly. He had ran into her back, and she seemed to be knocked out of a trance when he did so.
"What? Oh, hey, you're back," she said, turning, forcing another smile, "you're fine."
"Korra? Seriously, are you alright?" He asked, looking at her face and seeing the forcefulness of her smile.
"Yeah, I'm just fine, don't worry about me," she said, snapping at him.
Saltrall took a step back, caught off guard by her response, before nodding softly.
"It's the radio broadcast, isn't it?" He asked and she finally sighed and nodded, looking down at her feet. Saltrall lifted her chin so she looked at him.
"Hey, Korra, it's alright, you'll be okay, you're strong, you just need to focus," he said, putting his hand on her shoulder. Korra smiled softly and nodded.
"I'll try, thanks Saltrall," she replied, hesitating for a second before hugging him suddenly. Saltrall was caught off guard and blushed a little before he returned the hug.
"That's what I'm here for," he replied, pulling away, "now, I have to go see Tenzin."
She nodded and stepped aside, allowing Saltrall to walk past her. She watched him walk away before s and going back to her air-bending poses.
Saltrall walked into Tenzin's office without any warning to the older airbender, he just walked up to his desk and placed his hands on it.
"What the hell did Amon mean by 'Republic Council has voted to make me public enemy number one'?" Saltrall asked, looking at the perplexed airbender.
"What happened at the meeting today is none of your concern," he replied with a hint of venom in his voice, standing up while keeping his arms in his sleeves," and I know you're a friend of Korra's but you can't just barge into my office and ask me questions like that! I don't even know your name!"
Saltrall took a deep breath and stood up straight, trying to calm himself down.
"My apologies sir, where are my manners," he said sticking his hand out, "My name is Saltrallosimozonyith, I'm a Time Lord from the planet Gallifrey in the constellation Kasterborous, I am 603 years old and I'm just here to help."
"Alright Saltrallo- Saltrall," Tenzin said, calming down as well, "what do you want to know?" and he sat while motioning for Saltrall to do the same.
Saltrall sat down and took his jacket off, calming down, and thought for a second.
"What happened at the meeting earlier?" He asked.
Tenzin sighed and summarized the city council meeting, from his attempts to reason with the Northern Water Tribe representative Tarrlok, to their decision to start an anti-Equalist task force. Saltrall asked questions when he could and Tenzin answered them respectfully.
Saltrall sat there, nodding slowly before replying.
"Well, Tenzin," he said, standing up, "I'm afraid things just became a lot more difficult, for all of us."
Tenzin nodded and stood up as well.
"Yes, I'm afraid so. But, no matter, it was a pleasure to meet you, Saltrall," Tenzin said with a small smile, "even if it started less than cordial, you seem to be very knowledgeable, I respect that." He held out his hand and Saltrall smiled and grabbed it and shook it.
"Likewise. I'm just happy that we're on the same side through this mess," Saltrall replied, making Tenzin chuckle before letting go of Saltrall's hand and sitting back down.
"Now, I apologize but I have some work to attend to," Tenzin said, grabbing a few papers from his desk. Saltrall nodded and bowed before leaving the office. Then he thought back to his short meeting with Korra earlier and decided that he had to talk to her before things became even worse.
Chapter 12: Reunion Part II
Saltrall runs into another old friend and makes a startling discovery.
Saltrall went back outside where Korra was, but saw that she wasn't there. Confused and slightly concerned, he went looking for her. He searched around for a few minutes before he poked his head into her bedroom. He saw her lying on her bed, staring at the ceiling, lost in thought. He stood there for a few seconds, debating whether or not to let her know he was there, but he decided that it would be better to just leave her alone. He closed her door and sighed as he turned around, only to be confronted by Naga.
"Whoa, hey there, big girl, you scared me," he said, chuckling nervously while he waited for his rapid heartbeats to return to normal and he patted her on the head.
"Don't worry, I was just leaving," he said when she growled at him softly and he opened the door for her so she could be with her master. She walked in and he closed the door behind her, ignoring her stare as she looked up at the noise.
He went back to his TARDIS and went to the bathroom to clean up before he went to bed. He groaned when he looked in the mirror and saw his reflection. He had streaks of dirt and grime along his cheek and a small scratch on the bridge of his nose that he had failed to notice earlier. He ran a finger along it and sighed. He also noticed that he had bags beginning to form under his eyes from the lack of rest and overall adrenaline rush of the last few days and he threw some water on his face to try and clean up a little. He jumped in the shower real quick after that and got out before going to bed.
He awoke early the next morning and got ready for the day. He put on a blue t-shirt and a black zip-up hoodie with blue jeans. He took his TARDIS into the city while sipping a cup of coffee while looking for a place to eat. After last night at the island, he decided to give Korra some alone time. He landed and parked the TARDIS in an alley, but the chameleon circuit worked fine, so he didn't worry about it too much and he made sure to grab his baseball cap as he walked out the door onto the street.
He took in a deep breath and smiled as he stretched and looked around. The street was quieter than usual, with only a few early morning workers and food carts out and about. He put on his cap and walked down the street before eventually stopped at a small food cart he had eaten at a few times and bought a simple breakfast. He sat down to eat and was about halfway through his meal when he heard an all too familiar voice from behind him.
"Hey Saltrall, long time no see," it said, causing him to choke a little.
He managed to get the food down before he replied.
"Asami, hey, yeah, long time," he replied while coughing slightly as she sat down across from him at the the circular table.
"What have you been up too?" She asked with genuine curiosity, setting her moped helmet down in front of her and resting her hands on top of it.
"Oh you know, alien... stuff," he replied, looking down and taking another bite from his meal before taking a sip of water.
Asami chuckled and shook her head before pulling a pocket watch out and checking it.
"Alright, I see, playing hard to get," She said as she stood.
"You can understand my concern, the last few times we've met you unintentionally brought trouble my way," he replied, teasingly.
Asami just rolled her eyes playfully before picking up her helmet, "luckily for you, I just sat down to say hello, now I have a meeting to go to, so I'll catch you later."
"Oh, uh, okay, see you later, I guess," He said, slightly confused but he waved back when she waved goodbye at him before she got on her moped and sped off.
Saltrall took another bite of his meal while he watched her ride away. He blinked a couple times and shook his head a little, getting back to reality as he sipped his water.
"Huh, that was weirdest thing that's happened to me all day," Saltrall muttered to himself, rolling his neck neck softly, trying to work a couple kinks out of it while sighing.
He looked around and did a double-take when he saw a mysterious man wearing an eerily familiar pair of goggles staring at him from about thirty feet away in a small crowd of people who seemed to completely ignore him.
"Guess you spoke too soon, Saltrall," he said to himself, staring at the man before standing up and throwing his trash away, looking around for possible escape paths. He looked around one more time before sprinting across the street towards the stranger, who took off down a nearby alley.
"Yeah, that's what I was afraid off," Saltrall said as he held up his Sonic and made it emit a loud, high-pitched squeal, causing the crowd, which he assumed was going to try to stop him, to disperse as he ran down the alley after the stranger. He reached it just as his observer jumped up some boxes onto a rooftop, making Saltrall groan.
"Rooftops, it's always gotta be freaking rooftops," he muttered to himself, because he knew what happened almost every time he was in this position, but he kept up the chase and followed after him.
The stranger was looking over his shoulder at Saltrall, who stopped and pointed his Sonic at him, using it to explode a small metal crate that was next to the stranger, throwing him off his feet about 10 feet to the left. Saltrall put his Sonic in his pocket and ran up to the grunt as he was trying to get up.
"Who are you?" Saltrall asked, kicking him in the chest so he was on his back before picking him up by his collar.
"Wouldn't you like to know?" He replied, spitting in Saltrall's face.
Saltrall didn't even flinch and instead ripped his hood down.
"You're one of Amon's men I assume?" He asked, recognizing the symbol on his goggles "Yeah, of course you are, no one else seems to cares about me but him."
"Clever aren't you, Time Lord?" He asked, still smug.
"Smug little bastard, ain't ya?" He said as he drew his Sonic again, "perhaps this will change your tone."
Saltrall pressed the button freezing his stalker's limbs.
"Ha, Amon knows more about you then you think," he said, unperturbed by Saltrall
"Yeah, somehow I'm not surprised, everyone seems to be one step ahead of me, I've lived a while, I've learned the drill by now," Saltrall replied, annoyed, "but I've got a little message for him."
"Oh yeah, and what's that?" The goon asked, still smug, even in the face of his imminent death.
Saltrall opened his Sonic and placed it against the man's head.
"I don't show mercy to my enemies," He said pressing the button, killing the stranger.
He stood up and sighed, closing his Sonic and setting it to search mode. He found a tracking device in his pocket, no doubt so that they could pick him up from his little scouting run, but he left it on. He wanted to send Amon a message: Don't mess with a Time Lord. He started to walk away but looked over his shoulder and went back over to him. At the factory he didn't have time to study the goggles, but this time no one was stopping him, so he grabbed he pair that the grunt wore and carried them as he hopped off the roof.
He made it back to the TARDIS without any further problems, and he sat down on the couch and leaned back to relax. As he closed his eyes, however, a thought occurred to him.
"How did that guy know I his a Time Lord?" He thought as he opened his eyes and stood up. He went through all of his pants pockets and didn't find anything before going through his jackets. He thought it was a bust until he reached into his favorite coat pocket and felt something he knew didn't belong there. He grabbed the object and pulled out a tiny, bug shaped metallic object.
"Well, well, well, what do we have here?" He said, examining it, "so that's how you learned so much about me, eh Amon?" he said, talking into the bug before smirking, "nice try," and he crushed it in his fingers.
The Equalist engineer on the other end of the bug, listening through it, took off the headphones he was wearing and stopped the machine.
"Master Amon, the Time Lord discovered and destroyed the bug," he said, standing at attention and facing the Equalist leader's back. Amon, who was staring at his map and talking softly with his Lieutenant, turned towards the engineer.
"I knew this would happen eventually, thank you for telling me," he said, nodding softly, "we have gained more than enough information, we're just waiting for our scout to reach the rendezvous point."
Right after he said that, another foot soldier ran in and whispered something in his ear, making him growl in anger.
"Disregard that last comment," he said to the engineer, his voice slightly agitated and angry, "get a truck ready, we have an unfortunate pickup to make."
The engineer's eyes widened and he nodded once he realized what Amon meant and he quickly ran out of the office, leaving Amon to quietly fume with his officers.
The Equalists were disguised and Amon wore a hooded cloak as they climbed to the rooftop where the body was lying. There were already other Equalist soldiers examining the body as Amon walked up.
"Sir, there's no obvious signs of external trauma that could've killed him," one of the head Equalists said, standing up and turning to Amon.
"Well, we already know that's one of his little tricks, now don't we?" He asked, looking around, "the real question is where are his goggles?"
The other Equalists looked around and found nothing.
"Sir, I think he took them," one of them said, causing Amon to growl and slam his hand on a nearby AC unit.
"We need to find him, and when we do, he needs to be destroyed, he can't be allowed to study our technology," Amon barked out, as he turned and jumped off the roof.
Later that evening Saltrall was having dinner with Korra and Tenzin's family. He was leaving with his food to go eat in the TARDIS, despite Tenzin's insistence on having him eat with them, he politely excused himself.
"I have some things I need to look at and I need to be alone to do it," he explained as he excused himself.
As he was leaving he bumped into Tarrlok, the Northern Water Tribe representative to Republic City. Neither man said sorry to the other and Saltrall looked over his shoulder at him and stopped, putting his food down and quietly walking back to the doorway. He leaned against the wall next to it and listened to the conversation in the other room.
"As you may have heard, I am assembling a task force that will strike at the heart of the revolution and I want you to join me." He heard Tarrlok say.
"Really?" Korra asked in surprise.
"What?!" Tenzin exclaimed, leaning forward in shock.
"I need someone who will help me attack Amon directly, someone who is fearless in the face of danger. And that someone is you." Tarrlok said, gesturing to Korra.
"Join your task force? I can't." Korra responded, sipping her drink.
"I must admit, I'm rather surprised. I thought you'd jump at the chance to help me lead the charge against Amon." Tarrlok admitted.
"Me too." Tenzin muttered under his breath.
Saltrall shook his head and decided he had heard enough, so he grabbed his food and went back to his TARDIS. He contemplated what he heard while he walked.
"A task force to stop the revolution?" he thought, opening the door and setting his food down on the console, "Boy, that really does not sound good," he thought aloud.
He sat down with a sigh and rubbed his face. He tossed his Sonic in the air and caught it, still thinking about what he had heard before spinning his chair around to face the console and pulling out the goggles he'd taken from the Equalist.
"I'm sure they know by now I've got you," he said, talking to the goggles, "now let's find out why they'll want them back," he said while looking at them from all sides before putting them on.
"Whoa, what the hell?" he said as he looked around. The TARDIS' interior was illuminated green, like night vision, but with various statistics like heat signatures and other readings showing up in front of him. He looked around a bit more before taking them off, "now I know why they wear these things, and why I need to take you apart."
He set them down and pulled some food out and started to eat while he used his Screwdriver to scan them, with the conversation he'd heard inside still at the back of his mind.
Chapter 13: This Chapter Didn't Exist Six Months Ago
Saltrall goes for a walk and gets into some trouble before seeing a side of Korra not many people see.
No, that title isn't deceiving, or a joke, this seriously didn't exist when I wrote this story over on ff.net. I was rewriting the original chapter 13 and realized, "hey, there's over half an episode of the show I haven't even touched," and that led to some big plotholes, so this chapter and the next will hopefully fix those problems, so this chapter is actually designed to be a chapter 12.5 more than a chapter 13, because chapter 12 would have been way too long if I stuck this chapter and the next one onto the end.
Saltrall threw down the goggles in frustration as he sat back in his chair. He’d been trying to work at them for a good 30 minutes but maybe because he was tired, or maybe he just didn’t have the right tools, but he could not figure out how to access the internals without destroying them in the process.
“Forget this, I need to get out on the town,” he mumbled dejectedly as he turned to the console and flew into the city. He made sure he had his Sonic in his pocket as he grabbed a hat and headed out. He kept his head down to try and avoid the possible wandering eyes of Equalist spies or supporters mingling in crowds.
He walked for a few minutes and soon found himself in the restaurant district. He wasn’t hungry but he loved the exotic smells that filled his nostrils. He stopped outside a few and looked in some windows, only to be shooed away by waiters or ushers.
He eventually found himself in front of a restaurant called Kwong’s Cuisine. He looked in through the window and his eyes went wide when he saw Mako sitting inside.
“Damn Mako, moving up in the world,” he said softly, smiling, only to raise his eyebrow when he saw that he was sitting with none other than Asami Sato, “in more ways than one. Good man!”
“Sir, this is a high-class establishment, I’m afraid I must ask you to leave unless you plan to eat here,” a waiter said, suddenly appearing at the window.
“Ah, funny you should mention it, for I AM a high-class person myself,” he said, feeling around his pockets before pulling out his psychic paper and holding it up for the waiter to see. The waiter examined it and his eyes went wide.
“I-I’m so sorry, I had no idea it was you,” he said, backpedalling a little bit, “were you looking for a table?”
“No, thank you, I was just looking for possible restaurants while I was in town,” he replied, playing along as he stepped away from the window.
“Well you will be welcome here at any time,” the waiter said bowing deeply before running off. Saltrall looked up and saw a few people staring at him, so he waved a little and quickly walked away just as Mako looked over at the window.
“Huh, ambassador from... Okay, I’m not even going to try to pronounce that one,” he said, looking at his psychic paper and chuckling while shaking his head before putting it away.
He kept walking for a few blocks before stopping at an intersection for a red light. He looked around while he waited for the light to change until he noticed a small group of people walking towards him. He stared at them for a few seconds before he noticed the light change. He started to quickly walk across the street, and he noticed in the reflection of a shop window that they were still following.
“Okay, not good,” he said softly, getting his Sonic ready, when he noticed a man at the center of the group wearing an Equalist mask, “okay, scratch that, very not good,” he said again as he started running, only the group to split at the front as the masked Equalist threw a bola at him, wrapping his legs up.
He cried out as he fell on his side to the sidewalk. He rolled onto his back and sat up as he tried to untie the bola, not wanting to risk losing his Sonic by revealing it to his attackers. He didn’t have much time as one of the attackers kicked him in the chest and he fell backwards, and the last thing he saw was a boot heading for his temple as the world went black.
He awoke some time later lying on a couch in a room he didn’t recognize. He squinted and covered his face. There were only a few small light bulbs on, but in his state they were blinding. He groaned and tried to sit up. That was when he realized that he wasn’t alone in the room. He heard someone talking, but he couldn’t make out who it was through his grogginess, but they soon realized he was up and one of the people shouted something to someone outside.
He kept trying to get up but he felt a soft hand on his shoulder, pushing him gingerly onto his back. He looked over and saw that it belonged to Lin Beifong.
“Take it easy there, kid, you’ve had a hell of a night,” she said softly, smiling a little. He nodded and closed his eyes tight before opening them up and looking around again.
“What happened?” He asked, carefully maneuvering himself into a sitting position with the help of a police officer.
“You were attacked by an Equalist and a group of sympathizers,” Lin explained softly, knowing loud noises wouldn’t do the Time Lord any good in his state, “you were lucky, a couple of my officers were on patrol in the area and got them off of you before you suffered any serious injuries.”
“Yeah, but I got one hell of a headache,” he said softly, chuckling before grimacing in pain and closing his eyes, “owwww.”
“You’ll be fine, but you need to rest,” Lin said, turning to an officer, “get a blanket and pillow for Saltrall.”
“No, I can get up and get to my ship,” he said, smiling a little and opening his eyes, “man, I forgot how good it feels being able to say that.”
Lin rolled her eyes but smiled, “no, you’re staying here, I’d rather not have to pick you up twice in one night,” she said as she grabbed the blanket from the officer and tossed it over Saltrall. He smiled and closed his eyes again. He vaguely heard someone say “concussion,” but he was already dozing off and quickly fell asleep.
Morning came and he stirred early. He opened his eyes and stretched as he sat up much easier than the night before. He noticed a guard sitting by the door, who noticed him getting up and called for Lin to come back.
“Oh, don’t bother the Chief, I’m fine,” Saltrall said as he tossed the blanket off of him and sat up as if nothing happened last night. Lin walked in and gaped slightly at how easily he was moving around.
“Well, at least we know you don’t have a concussion,” she said, slightly in awe at his recovery time.
“Of course not, I’m a Time Lord, we’ve got thick heads. I thought you’d have figured that out by now,” he said, trying to hold a straight face but failing when he saw Lin facepalm as the other officers groaned.
“Oh trust me, I noticed,” she said flatly, “but, I guess since you’re fine, you can head out now, we have no reason to hold you here. You're free to go.”
Saltrall smiled and nodded, “Thanks, Lin, for letting me stay here overnight, I mean, and not in a cell for once,” he said, grabbing his things.
“It’s not too late to get one ready for you,” Lin replied, smirking, “we’ve turned a blind eye to a lot of your transgressions in the past, it would be a shame if one of those records reappeared...”
Saltrall held up his hands in front of him, “alright no need to get passive-aggressive, I get the hint, I was just heading out,” he said walking past Lin. She turned and watched him leave.
“Hey, be safe out there kid,” she said softly, Saltrall turned and smiled and nodded at her.
“You know me, Chief, I’ll be in your office in less than a week,” he said, making her laugh as he stepped out of the room and walked through the station back into the city.
He stepped out into the calm, early morning streets of Republic City and breathed in the cool, slightly polluted air. He smiled and watched some early morning commuters go about their business before he stepped onto the sidewalk and headed down an alley. He felt for his Sonic and sighed in relief when he felt the familiar shape in his pocket. He hadn’t had time to check to see if he had lost it last night and it was really good that he hadn’t. He pulled it out and pointed it in front of him and activated it, causing his TARDIS to appear in front of him. He smiled and stepped inside.
“Hey girl, did you miss me?” He asked his craft after he closed the door. He hung his jacket up and set his Sonic on the console as he sat down and rubbed a free spot on the console face.
“Alright, let’s head back to the island,” he said, putting in the coordinates and pulling a lever, "I've had enough of the city for one day."
He landed and got the TARDIS settled before grabbing his things and stepping back out into the morning sun. He smiled and looked around before heading for one of the buildings. He looked around for Korra and turned a corner. He saw her talking to Bolin while sitting on some steps, petting Naga’s belly. He watched them from a distance until Korra noticed him and waved him over.
“Don’t be a stranger, come on and get over here!” She shouted as he started walking over, smiling softly and waving at Bolin when he waved at him.
“I was just thanking Korra for rescuing me yesterday, if I had known you’d be here, I would’ve gotten you a cupcake too,” Bolin said, holding a cupcake and rose for Korra. Saltrall raised an inquiring eyebrow before smiling.
“Gee, Bolin, only a cupcake, I think I deserve a rose too, after all, I did give you a few Yuans AND told your brother you were in trouble,” he said, making Bolin blush and Korra laugh.
Korra’s laugh subsided when a messenger came walking over holding a large basket filled with various gifts.
“Delivery for Avatar Korra. Tarrlok sends his compliments and urges you to reconsider his offer,” the page said, setting the basket down in front of Korra, making her sigh softly.
“Oh, good. Good, that sounds better. I like that better,” Bolin replied, calming down, making Saltrall smile and roll his eyes softly.
Later that day, Saltrall was sitting down and leaning against the wall of one of the buildings on Air Temple Island, spending his time twirling his Sonic around while watching Tenzin’s children mess around with a Satomobile that Tarrlok had sent Korra, another ill-fated attempt to woo her to his cause, and watching the aforementioned Avatar practice her airbending techniques. He saw Tenzin walk over to her and they sat down and talked. He couldn’t hear what they were talking about, but he noticed Korra looked a bit shaken as Tenzin stood, said one last thing, and walked away. Saltrall, curious, stood up and walked over to where she was sitting.
“Hey Korra, you okay?” He asked, sitting down next to her, where Tenzin had just been. She jumped a little, not noticing him walk up.
“Oh, hey Saltrall,” she said, running a hand through her hair and looking at him, trying to smile, but failing under his stare as he studied her face.
“What did Tenzin want?” He asked softly, putting a hand on her back.
“N-nothing,” she said, standing up quickly, “I just- I need to be alone for a bit, okay?” She asked, looking back over at him as he stood up calmly. He felt awful, he saw what he could only describe as fear in her eyes, and he knew there was nothing he could do to help her in that moment. He smiled softly and nodded.
“You’ve had a long day, you deserve a break,” he said, his voice soft and caring. Korra nodded and managed a small smile.
“Thanks, Saltrall, for understanding,” she said, looking a little happier than just a few seconds ago. She hesitated for a few seconds, seemingly debating something in her head before turning and walking off quickly.
Saltrall let his smile fade as she walked away and he sighed as he sat back down, watching over the bay, thinking about Korra and what he could try to do to help.
Chapter 14: Frozen In Fear
Korra asks Saltrall for advice and things don't go according to plan at a gala thrown in Korra's honor.
Surprise! This chapter is longer than most of my chapters AND it still doesn't quite bridge the gap between chapters 12 and 13, so this is chapter 12.75, with I guess a chapter 12.9 coming next, but then it will be back on track to the original chapter 13.
A few hours had passed since Korra had stopped her airbending practice for the night and Saltrall finally had gone back to the TARDIS to meditate. He was in the process of taking some deep breaths when he was interrupted by a knock on the TARDIS door. He sighed softly and went over to the door, opening it to reveal a nervous looking Korra, holding a piece of paper in her hands.
“Oh, hey Korra, fancy seeing you here,” he said, smiling a little.
“Hey, Saltrall, are you busy?” She asked, shifting her weight between her legs, he shook his head, “can I come in?” He wordlessly stepped aside and she stepped inside.
“What’s on your mind, Korra?” He asked, shutting the door behind her and walking over to the couch and sitting on the arm of it as she sat in middle of the cushion on the opposite side of the couch.
“I just want, well more so need , some advice,” she said, focused intently on the paper in her hands. Saltrall followed her gaze and held his hand out.
“Can I see that?” He asked, moving to the cushion next to Korra with his arm still outstretched. She handed the paper to him and he read over it.
“You are hereby invited... blah blah blah... formalities include... in the honor of Avatar Korra?” Saltrall said under his breath as he read, his eyebrow arching up when he read the last part and he looked up at Korra, “so he wants to hold a party in your honor? Is this a bribe or something?”
Korra shrugged, “I mean, it’s obviously another one of his attempts to get me to join his stupid task force, but this is where I need some advice, apparently a lot of important bigwigs are going to be there, and I don’t want to go but I think I have to.”
Saltrall kept reading and his eyebrows went up in surprise when he saw the date and time and saw it was tomorrow night.
“Well, this is also a very sudden invitation,” he said, setting it down and looking up at Korra, who still looked a little nervous, her eyes focused on a spot on the couch.
“Hey,” Saltrall said, touching her leg softly, causing her to jump and look up at him, “you have to go, I know you don’t want to, but I can go with you if you want, and I know Tenzin and his family will go with you, even if I don’t.”
Korra nodded at his words and took a deep breath before standing up.
“Of course, Saltrall,” she said, a bit more confident than before, “I’m sorry for being so nervous about asking for advice, I was just,” she hesitated, trying to find the right word, “flustered, after earlier.”
Saltrall smiled and stood, “don’t worry about it, happens to the best of us,” he said, handing the invitation back to her, “now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some meditation to get back to.”
Korra smiled but left the TARDIS and Saltrall went back to meditation, or tried to, as he couldn’t stop thinking. Eventually, he got tired of his mind wandering while he tried to meditate, so he just gave up and stood up, stretching out his legs with noticeable pops as the joints got used again. He walked to the bathroom and got himself a glass of water, staring at his reflection as he sipped.
“Come on, Saltrall, get those thoughts out of your head,” he said, quietly to himself in between sips. He sighed and set the cup down on the sink before going back to the main console room and putting his shoes on before stepping out into the cool night. He took in a deep breath and sighed softly before walking over to a cliff side and sitting down, letting his legs dangle off the edge. He stared out over the bay and let his mind wander in thought again.
“What if Korra doesn’t me to come with her and something happens to her?” He thought to himself, frowning, “Hell, it wouldn’t be the first time I let a friend down- no! We are not thinking about that now!” He kept thinking before shaking his head and smacking himself once, trying to rid those memories from his head.
“You alright over here?” He heard from behind him and he looked over his shoulder as Korra sat down next to him on his right.
“Yeah, fine, I just needed some fresh air,” he said, looking back over the bay, “just thinking about some stuff.”
“You want to talk about it?” Korra asked, turning to face him, bringing one leg up to her chest and wrapping an arm around her knee.
Saltrall opened his mouth to respond before shutting it with a sigh.
“Not right now, sorry,” he said, looking down into his lap.
“I don’t know if I’ll ever be ready to talk about it,” he thought to himself. He started getting lost in thought again when he was brought back to reality by Korra putting a hand on his shoulder, causing him to look at her again.
“Hey, hey, it’s alright, I understand,” she said softly, examining his face, “I came out here to ask if that offer about having you come with me was still on the table.”
Saltrall smiled a soft, genuine smile and nodded.
“Of course it is, I’d be happy to go with you,” he said sincerely. Korra smiled and nodded.
“Thanks, Saltrall, um, don’t tell Tenzin this, but I’d feel a lot safer with you with me when we went, since you’ve seen what the Equalists are capable of,” she said, blushing slightly out of embarrassment.
Saltrall chuckled and nodded, “your secret’s safe with me,” he said, pretending to zip his lips shut before growing serious again.
“Do you actually think Amon will attack you at this thing?” He asked her seriously. Korra just sighed and shrugged.
“I don’t know, that’s why I want you with me, just in case,” she said, “besides, I have to put on a brave face for the crowd, and that will be easier knowing I have backup.”
“What about Mako and Bolin, will they be there?”
“I assume so, but I don’t know for sure, we’ll see when we get there.”
Saltrall nodded and looked back over the large body of water towards the city. Korra yawned beside him before she stood up.
“It’s late, we should probably get some rest,” she said, holding a hand out to Saltrall. He looked over and took it and she helped him up.
“Yeah, we have a big day tomorrow,” he agreed, stretching a little. Korra smiled and nodded.
“Goodnight, Saltrall,” she said, smiling and taking a few steps backwards.
“Goodnight Korra,” he replied, smiling. Korra turned and walked back towards the mansion, leaving Saltrall alone for a few seconds, watching her go, before he too returned to the TARDIS and went to bed.
He spent the entirety of the next day locked in the TARDIS, making preparations for the gala up until the time Korra knocked on the door to get him. He had put on a light blue polo shirt and khaki pants and sprayed a bit of perfume that, as the female companion who had given it to him said, “made all the girls swoon.” He didn’t see the appeal but it was all he had so he sprayed it anyway before grabbing his Screwdriver and psychic paper and opening the door for Korra.
“Hey, ready to- whoa,” Korra said when he opened the door, stopping when she looked him over.
“Whoa yourself,” He said, looking her over. She was wearing a long blue dress with white accents with her hair up. Saltrall cleared his throat to try and clear the awkward tension that had built up while standing there.
“You look nice,” he said, blushing slightly as he found a very interesting pebble on the ground by his foot to stare at.
“I could say the same to you,” she said, also blushing a little, before shaking her head, “ready to go?”
“Yeah, definitely,” he said, stepping out and closing the TARDIS door behind him before walking on Korra’s right side back to the main area of the island.
“Smooth casanova,” he thought to himself as they walked, “Just stay cool, as long as she doesn’t say anything too-”
“You know, you really shouldn’t wear sweatshirts so much, your arms look fantastic,” Korra complimented as friendly as possible to try and avoid more awkward blushing.
“Oh, uh thanks,” Saltrall replied, looking at his right arm as he walked, “I work out a bit, I guess I just stopped noticing them.”
And he had, but his biceps definitely filled out the sleeves of his polo in a way that definitely made him understand why she was complimenting them.
“I like how you did your hair,” he said back to her, looking at her hair.
“Thank you,” she said with a smile before the walk devolved into a semi-awkward silence. They made it to the main area where Tenzin and his family was waiting. They all climbed onto the back of a flying bison and flew into the city.
They all walked into city hall and Pema began to socialize with some guests while the airbender children ran off, leaving Korra, Tenzin and Saltrall alone, walking through the crowd of attendants who started clapping when they noticed them.
“I can't believe this is all for me,” Korra said as they stopped and she looked around.
“I'm not sure what Tarrlok's plotting, but keep your guard up. It's not like him to throw a party just for the fun of it,” Tenzin replied, looking around a bit suspiciously. Saltrall looked around too, but his attention was soon drawn to Tarrlok, who was walking towards them.
“So glad you could make it, Avatar Korra,” the waterbender said as he stopped in front of them before addressing Tenzin, “if you'd excuse us, the city awaits its hero.”
Tarrlok began to walk away with Korra and Saltrall followed, causing Tarrlok to stop and turn.
“I’m sorry, but this is for Korra and Korra alone,” he said calmly, but obviously annoyed.
“Sorry, but anywhere the Avatar goes, I go, got it, waterboy?” Saltrall replied with a sting to his voice to let Tarrlok know he wasn’t messing around. Tarrlok’s smile turned to a glare for a fraction of a second before returning to a smile.
“Very well, right this way,” he said, noticeably more frustrated than before. Korra looked at Saltrall, who just nodded in return and they all continued walking. They mingled with a few guests before approaching a well dressed man, even by the gala’s standards, with glasses and mustache. His hair was dark with a couple of grey streaks through it.
“Korra, it's my pleasure to introduce Republic City's most famous industrialist, Hiroshi Sato,” Tarrlok said, motioning to the industrialist.
“Nice to meet you,” Korra said with a small wave, and the man bowed in acknowledgement.
“We're all expecting great things from you,” he said after he straightened his back.
“Right, greatness,” Korra said, looking down sadly, making Saltrall, who had been mostly staying behind the two waterbenders, step forward and put a comforting hand on her shoulder.
“Oh, and who is your friend here?” Hiroshi asked, smiling at Saltrall, who bowed slightly.
“My name is Saltrall, sir, I’m just a friend of Korra’s, I know your-”
“Father!” A familiar female voice called from beside them.
“-Daughter,” Saltrall finished with a soft sigh as Mako, Bolin, and Asami all walked up to them. Asami was holding onto Mako’s arm, causing Korra’s to narrow when she noticed. Saltrall, meanwhile had looked away and was scratching his neck.
“Hey Korra, hey Saltrall,” Mako said, smiling.
“This is my daughter, Asami,” Hiroshi said, gesturing to Asami, who held her hand out towards Korra.
“It's lovely to meet you. Mako's told me so much about you,” Asami said. She left her hand out for a few seconds before pulling it away when Korra made no attempt to shake it, “and I see you brought along a date,” she said, half-teasingly towards Saltrall.
“Hey, Asami, long time no see,” Saltrall said, chuckling nervously, looking over at the group, “I’m not her date, I’m just a friendly acquaintance.”
Asami giggled and smirked ever so softly, “whatever you say, Saltrall,” she said knowingly.
“Anyway, Mako hasn't mentioned you at all. How did you two meet?” He asked, trying to clear the awkwardness from the conversation after glancing at Korra who was still staring daggers into Asami’s head.
“Asami crashed into him on her moped,” Bolin said, leaning forward and talking quickly. That seemed to knock Korra out of her angry trance and she looked at Mako.
“What? Are you okay?” She asked him, concern in her voice.
“I'm fine. More than fine. Mister Sato agreed to sponsor our team; we're back in the tournament!” Mako said excitedly as Bolin agreed.
“Yeah, terrific,” Korra said, all emotion leaving her voice.
Just then, Saltrall noticed Chief Beifong walking past, and Tarrlok stopped her.
“Chief Beifong, I believe you and Avatar Korra have already met,” Tarrlok said, motioning to Korra.
“Just because the city's throwing you this big to-do, don't think you're something special,” Lin said as she glared at Korra and leaned in closer, “you've done absolutely nothing to deserve this.”
Lin’s eyes just flashed over Saltrall in acknowledgement before she walked away, leaving Korra glaring before she looked down in sadness. Tarrlok grabbed her arm softly and led her over towards the stage, removing his hand once she started walking with him. Saltrall watched them go before silently walking over towards the steps leading up on stage, where Korra was standing behind a podium, having reporters shouting questions at her. He grabbed his Sonic in his pocket and stopped, glaring into the crowd until Korra yelled from the stage.
“I am not afraid of anybody! If the city needs me then...” She yelled before gesturing towards Tarrlok, “I'll join Tarrlok's task force and help fight Amon.”
“Korra, no...” Saltrall said softly as Tarrlok walked up from behind her and put his arm on Korra’s shoulder.
“There's your headline, folks,” he said, smiling as the camera’s started flashing. Korra looked down and frowned once she realized what had just happened.
Saltrall looked around quickly before making his way calmly on stage. The reporters all started talking amongst themselves, wondering who this stranger was, but Saltrall ignored them, he just glared at a smug looking Tarrlok as he wrapped an arm Korra’s waist and led her offstage and back into the crowd.
Chapter 15: Ghost in the Shadow
Saltrall motivates Korra and they share a little heart-to-heart
About an hour had passed and the crowds of people were beginning to dissipate as the gala began to wind down. After the impromptu news conference, Saltrall hadn’t left Korra’s side, threatening away any journalists who were looking for follow up answers. Tenzin and his family had already left after Saltrall assured him that he could get her back to the island, and Tarrlok hadn’t bothered them, seemingly content with how the gala had gone. Korra, meanwhile, kept staring at the floor or the wall, but never looking at people who walked up to them. Saltrall sighed and looked around, but he felt his heart skip a beat when Korra rested her head against his shoulder and sighed.
“Hey Korra,” he said, looking over at her, causing her to lift her head and look at him.
“Sorry, I didn’t mean to put my head on your shoulder, if that makes you uncomfortable,” she said, looking away and blushing a little.
“What? No, I don’t mind,” he said reassuringly.
“In fact, I wish you would put it back, whoa, where did that come from?” he thought, but he smiled a little in relief when he caught the corners of Korra’s mouth turn up in a small smile.
“Okay, sounds good,” she said, looking back at him, “what’s up?”
“I know you just accidentally reneged on your whole ‘not joining Tarrlok’ thing, but you can’t keep moping like this,” He said softly and full of care.
“Why not?” Korra asked, looking away, “I just did the one thing I said I wasn’t going to do, sue me for being upset about it.”
“Korra...” Saltrall said with a small sigh as he grabbed her shoulders softly, but hard enough to make her jump and look at him.
“You’re upset, I understand, but I’ve been alive for hundreds of years and I’ve done a lot of things I regret, and I felt awful and upset at myself afterwards, but you know what I did?”
“You sucked it up and kept going on with life?” Korra asked, looking at the Time Lord, her voice a mix of deadpan and dismissal.
“No, I thought about it, and this never gets easier, but I don’t let it show, I don’t suck it up, I just don’t let my mistakes show on my face until I’m alone,” Saltrall said, causing Korra’s expression to change from sadness to confusion.
“What do you mean?” She asked, her eyes softening as she examined his face.
“I mean, we all make mistakes, and we never let go of them, but we need to own up to them and keep going, learn from them,” he said, hoping he was getting through to her. He lifted her chin softly when she looked down again.
“You’re strong, I know you can get through this,” he said, removing his hand and smiling softly. Korra smiled back and nodded.
“Yeah, your right, Saltrall,” she said, cheering up a little, “thanks.”
“What can I say, you pick up a little bit of wisdom when you live for 600 years,” he replied with a chuckle. They were quiet for a few seconds before Korra suddenly wrapped an arm around Saltrall and pulled him into a little side hug. Saltrall was caught off guard but he returned the hug quickly.
“You’re a great friend, you know that?” Korra said as she pulled away and took a step back to her original spot.
Saltrall blushed a little and looked away.
“Yeah, I’ve been told that a few times,” he said, pretending to be nonchalant before looking back at Korra, “but it is nice to hear again.”
Korra smiled at him and looked around, finally acknowledging some of the people that were still standing around them. Saltrall looked around before doing a double take when he noticed Asami staring at them from about 50 feet while Mako was talking to Bolin. She raised an eyebrow at him and looked at Korra and back at him. Saltrall pointed at himself and then at Korra before shaking his head. Asami rolled her eyes and smiled before turning back to Mako and Bolin. Saltrall let out a short breath and looked away. He saw Korra talking to a couple of guests who were still there and he smiled softly.
About 30 minutes had passed when the last of the guests began to file out. Mako, Bolin and Asami had come over and said their goodbyes, and Korra was cordial to Mako and Bolin, but she pretended to be happy for Asami, as she stuck her tongue out at her as soon as she turned around to leave.
“You’re seriously petty about her, you know that?” Saltrall said when he saw her do that.
“What? No it isn’t, something about her just rubs me the wrong way,” Korra said, crossing her arms in front of her.
“Really? Because I think you’re jealous of the fact that she’s with Mako,” Saltrall said, smirking when Korra’s eyes widened and she blushed.
“What? No, that’s- what?” She blubbered, looking away from him, making him chuckle.
“Please, your face is easier to read than Sontaran war diaries,” he said, causing her to look at him in confusion, “oh, right, different world, um, aliens who look like big potatoes and always fight wars,” he explained. Korra just nodded slowly, obviously not understanding what he was talking about. Saltrall just sighed and shook his head.
“Never mind, it’s not important, look, Asami really isn’t-” he started to say before he frowned as he saw Tarrlok walking up to them. Korra noticed and turned around as he stopped in front of them.
“Korra, good, I’m glad you’re still here, I need to talk to you,” Tarrlok said before glaring at Saltrall, “alone.”
Korra looked over at Saltrall as he crossed his arms and rolled his eyes, but he nodded and watched Tarrlok and Korra walk away to the other side of the room. They talked for a few minutes and Saltrall leaned against the wall, watching and ready to move at the first sign of trouble, but none came and Korra walked back over to him.
“What was that about?” Saltrall asked, standing up straight when she reached him.
“Nothing, just task force stuff,” she said, grimacing a little as she said it. Saltrall looked at her expectantly.
“Care to elaborate a little?” He asked her, but she just shook her head no. Saltrall just shrugged, “alright,” he said, come on, we should probably head back to the island.”
Korra nodded while yawning before she furrowed her brow.
“Hang on,” she said as she finished yawning, “Tenzin left hours ago, how are we supposed to get?”
Saltrall smiled and pulled his Sonic out of his pocket and tossed it in the air before catching it.
“Time Lord, remember?” He said before softly grabbing her hand and leading her outside. He looked around and smiled before looking at Korra and nodding his head to the right before jogging in that direction.
“Hey, slow down,” she said hurrying after him, “this dress wasn’t made for hustling.”
“True, but it is a gorgeous dress,” he said, stopping in front of an alley and smirking when he saw her blush, “now, watch this.”
He pointed his sonic into the alley and activated it, causing the TARDIS to materialize in front of them, looking like a tree still, making Korra giggle.
“Saltrall, I’ve already seen that little trick of yours,” she said with a smile.
“Okay, first, I know, that wasn’t the cool part,” Saltrall said, blushing, “second, I still haven’t fixed the chameleon circuit and I have to manually camouflage it, and third,” he looked over at her and smiled, holding up his hand, “watch this.”
He snapped his fingers and the trunk of the tree opened up, and Korra gasped a little and put her hand over her mouth.
“Oh my gosh, that’s awesome! How did you do that?” She asked walking towards the TARDIS slowly, making Saltrall smile.
“Just a little Time Lord trick, my friend thought he was the only one who could do it, of course, when there are only three Time Lords alive it’s not that hard to think-” he started, his explanation turning to a ramble until Korra turned around from where she was by the TARDIS and looked at him.
“Wait, did you say there’s only three other people like you?” She asked seriously, making Saltrall stop talking.
“Oh, right, I never told you that...” Saltrall said, trailing off at the end and pulling his lower lip into his mouth. He looked down and started getting lost in thought.
“Saltrall? Saltrall?” Korra asked when she saw him do that and walked over to him when he didn’t respond. She shook his arm slightly, trying to get his attention but he just shook his head and took in a deep breath before looking up.
“Sorry, I’m sorry, I just- the memories came back, and,” he replied, letting out a breath as he tried to find the right words before just giving up and finishing with, “I’m just... Sorry.”
Korra nodded and pulled him into a soft hug, which Saltrall didn’t immediately return.
“It’s alright, I understand, I’m sorry I brought up the memories,” she said softly, rubbing Saltrall’s back softly, which seemed to fully bring him back to reality and he hugged her back.
“Thanks, and don’t worry, it’s not your fault, I’m not upset,” he said softly, resting his cheek against her hair softly before pulling away and smiling, “now, let’s get you home.”
He smiled at her before hurrying to the TARDIS. She stood there for a second, watching him walk away, trying to figure out if that was a sad smile he flashed at her before she followed him back to the TARDIS.
She shut the door behind her and watched him fiddle with a few things on the console until he looked over his shoulder at her.
“Ready to go? What time do you want to get home?” He asked looking at the monitor and pressing a few buttons.
“What time? Oh right, time machine, sorry, um, how about 30 minutes ago,” she said, sitting on the couch.
“Coming right up,” he said, smiling, “and don’t ask, time is a very confusing concept that I don’t want to explain this late at night.”
Korra nodded and looked around the inside of the ship as it jolted to life as Saltrall pulled a lever and started running around the console, pulling levers and spinning various things.
“Why are you running around like that?” Korra asked, giggling a little and watching him. He smiled at her as he pumped on something by the monitor.
“See, a TARDIS is supposed to have six pilots, but that’s a rather hard requirement for me to meet for obvious reasons, so I have to do it myself,” he explained while running around the console and pulling another lever, causing the TARDIS to slow down and land, “the ride’s a bit more bumpy, but it’s still completely safe.”
He grabbed the monitor and smiled before snapping his fingers to open the door and poking his head out.
“Home sweet home, and 30 minutes early,” Saltrall said as he stepped back inside and turned to face Korra, “that’s the great thing about Time Lords we always make great time.”
Korra rolled her eyes and smiled before standing.
“Whatever you say, Saltrall,” she said walking over to where he was standing and smiled up at him softly, “and thanks for coming along with me tonight, you were a great help,” she said, blushing shyly.
“Ah, don’t worry about it, I had a good time, it’s been awhile since I’ve been a bodyguard, it was fun,” he said, making Korra giggle, “anyway, you need to go to bed young lady, it’s way past your bedtime.”
“Whatever you say dad ,” she replied, laughing before she stepped out of the TARDIS and waved goodbye to Saltrall, who waved back, before she headed back to her room. Saltrall watched her go before closing the door behind him with a sigh.
He went back to his bedroom and changed into a pair of sweats and a t-shirt and climbing into bed, quickly letting sleep overcome him. He shot up in the middle of the night, panting hard after having another nightmare of the Time War.
“It was just a nightmare, calm down, that’s in the past,” he whispered to himself as he rested his forehead on his knees trying to calm down. He fell back and stared at the ceiling until he let himself fall back into an uneasy sleep.