My grandmother used to tell me stories about the old days. A time of peace, when the Avatar kept balance between the Water Tribes, Earth Kingdom, Fire Nation, and Air Nomads. But that all changed when grandpa left, apparently because he had to "seek out his destiny at the North Pole" or some bullshit. Also, apparently the Fire Nation wiped out the Air Nomads for some reason, and that's like a problem or something? I don't know. Point is, because the Fire Nation is fighting everyone, we no longer have good whiskey and have to settle for crappy-ass kelp moonshine. I hate kelp moonshine.
But there's some hope, because there's this guy called the Avatar, who's supposed to keep the peace between all the benders. I'm one of them, and my brother isn't, so suck it Dennis! But the Avatar vanished, so...kelp moonshine.
About two years ago, my father left in order to venture into the Earth Kingdom to try and scrounge up some decent beer. And also because apparently Mom slept with every other man in the Water Tribe. But I haven't lost hope. I still believe that somehow, someway, I'll be able to find true love, success as an actress, and worldwide fame.
Or at least a good fuck and some decent booze.
Two figures sat in a canoe that floated silently in ice-laden waters.
"C'mon..." Dennis muttered to himself, tracing the figure of a fish as it swam by. "Just come a little closer, let me stab ya..."
Dee rolled her eyes and watched another fish swim by. She removed one of her gloves and pulled at the water, bringing up an orb of liquid with a fish inside.
"You mean like this?" she asked her brother.
Dennis didn't even turn around. "Nobody cares about your magic."
Dee scowled, moved the globe of water over her brother's head, and let go of it. The fish landed on Dennis's head and bounced into the water.
"Dee, you bitch!" Dennis complained. "It's fucking freezing, and you dump water on me?"
Dee stuck out her tongue. "Serves you right."
Dennis scowled. "Just keep your weirdness away from me."
"I'm weird?" Dee complained. "I'm not the one who makes muscles at himself everytime he sees his reflection in the water!"
"You would too if you looked this fantastic," Dennis said. "At least I never needed a back brace."
"Yeah?" Dee said angrily. "At least I can get a date!"
"I could get a date if women didn't talk to each other!" Dennis said. "And at least I don't look like a bird!"
"Oh, that's it!" Dee said, lunging at him. The duo began brawling in the canoe, not noticing when a riptide formed and sent them swiftly towards an iceberg. They continued to fight until the canoe was caught between two drifting floes that shatter the boat, sending them tumbling out onto one of the floes right next to the iceberg.
Dennis sat up and huffed. "Nice job, Dee. Now we're stranded!"
"I wasn't the one steering!" Dee said angrily.
"No, you were just the one bitching!" Dennis responded. "Now shut up while I figure out how to get us out of here."
Dee rolled her eyes. "Why don't I just waterbend us back to shore."
Dennis smirked. "Yeah, like you can do that."
"Fuck you!" Dee said angrily, sitting down again.
"Don't pout, Dee," Dennis said. He smirked. "It's not your fault you're so useless."
"Oh really," Dee said. "I'm useless."
Dennis shrugged. "Yeah."
Dee got to her feet to face her brother. "I am not useless!"
Dennis raised an eyebrow.
"I do the cooking! I do the cleaning! I wash your dirty socks, which by the way have you smelled them? They smell like penis!" she continued. "And I know WHY they smell like penis!"
"Whoa, whoa, whoa!" Dennis interrupted. "I am not–"
"It's because you stuff your parka!" Dee continued, barreling over him. "And it doesn't work because in case you haven't noticed, nobody is interested in you because they all know you're a creep! Nobody likes you!"
As Dee ranted, the iceberg behind her began shifting with her movements until cracks appeared and it suddenly broke apart. A large wave formed and crashed over the floe, which bobbed to the surface seconds later, both siblings wet and coughing.
"Fantastic job, Dee," Dennis said sarcastically. "You managed to soak both of us this time."
"Fuck you," Dee said before launching into another coughing fit.
Behind them, part of the broken iceberg resurfaced, a figure inside glowing with blue light. Neither sibling noticed.
"So what do we do now?" Dee asked once she had finally gotten her breath back.
"Well, I guess we hop across the ice until we can get home," Dennis said.
The two siblings turned around. Their eyes widened as they noticed the glowing iceberg.
"Holy. Fuck," Dennis breathed.
"The hell is that?" Dee asked shrilly.
"Quiet!" Dennis snapped. "Don't say anything, don't make any sudden movements. If we don't do anything, maybe it won't notice us."
Dee looked at him skeptically. The iceberg continued to bob steadily in front of them.
"Yeah, fuck that," Dee said. She grabbed the whalebone club from Dennis's back.
"Dee, don't!" Dennis yelled.
It was too late. Dee threw the club at the iceberg, and it impacted with a harsh thonk. The iceberg split apart, and the glowing figure rose high into the air, casting its light for miles around.
Out in the open ocean, an iron ship steamed along steadily. A figure on the ship spotted the light, and his face cracked into a smile.
"Finally," the man said. He turned around. "Uncle, do you know what this means?"
His uncle–a short, portly, balding man–took a sip from his beer. "You're about to do something stupid?"
"It means my search is about to come to an end," he said.
Liam's uncle sighed.
"That light came from an incredibly powerful source!" Liam argued. "It has to be him."
"Just give up, already," his uncle advised. "We were given a free ticket to go all over the world, and you've spent it chasing a myth. Why don't we just go up to the Earth Kingdom and pick us up some hooers?"
"I DON'T NEED ANY HOOERS!" Liam said angrily. "I need my sister's pussy! Helmsman! Head a course for the light!"
Dee and Dennis watched as the light faded and the figure sank back down to earth...before falling off of the iceberg and into the water. The body floated up to them, and Dennis prodded it with the blunt end of his spear.
"You think he's dead?" Dee asked.
Dennis cocked his head. "Would it be gay if he was?"
"Dennis!" Dee said, shocked.
"What?" Dennis asked. "You said it yourself, nobody here will sleep with me." He hauled the body out of the water. It let out a groan, and Dennis dropped in on the ice out of shock.
The body's eyes snapped open.
"Whoa..." the man muttered. "What'd I miss?"
The man was slim, in his mid-thirties, with wild black hair and sparkling brown eyes. He was wearing clothes that were much too light for the weather that were currently soaked through. He shook his head.
"Damn," he muttered. "I think I sniffed too much glue." He noticed his companions. "Who are you guys?"
"I'm–" Dee started to say.
"Hold up," Dennis said, pointing the sharp end of his spear at the newcomer. "Who are you?"
The newcomer used a gust of air to push himself to his feet, shocking both siblings. "I'm Charlie. I'm an airbender. And this is..."
Charlie turned around and scratched his head. "Huh. Well he was here a moment ago."
"Maybe he's back in the iceberg?" Dee suggested.
"Dee!" Dennis complained. "We don't want to even the odds!"
Charlie used a gust of air to push himself over the remnants of part of the iceberg, where he found a giant white buffalo sleeping on the other side.
"Should we just leave?" Dee asked her brother.
Dennis listened to Charlie trying to wake up his friend. "Yes. We should."
Before they could leave, though, the bison stuck his head over the top of the ice wall and sneezed, showering them both with snot.
"Don't worry!" Charlie called over to them. "It'll wash out!"
A sour look came to Dee's face, and she turned to leave. Her eyes widened, and she gasped.
"Dennis!" she said frantically. "Where's all the ice?"
Dennis turned around and groaned. While they were distracted, all the other ice floes had floated away, leaving them surrounded by frigid ocean.
"If you want, we can give you a lift," Charlie said, poking his head out over top of the bison.
"Fine. Whatever," Dennis said in a clipped tone of voice.
He and his sister clambered onto the bison. Charlie took the reins.
"Alright, first-time fliers hold tight!" Charlie said. "Appa, yip-yip!"
"Wait, fliers?" Dennis said worriedly. "What do you mean fl–"
The bison leapt 20 feet in the air. Both Dee and Dennis screamed.
The Fire Nation ship steamed towards the frozen shore. Liam McPoyle stood at the prow of the ship, watching the path of the ship. His uncle came up behind him.
"I'm going to bed now," Liam's uncle said. He yawned dramatically. "Yep. Without anybody to keep me...company."
Liam turned around, surprised. "Uncle, I thought you'd never offer! Of course I'll–"
"Not you!" Liam's uncle said. "Liam, we need to turn this ship around and find us some real company. And some decent food. I'm sick of eating fish."
Liam turned away from him. "I would eat fish every day, if it meant I would once again be reunited with my siblings."
"Even if the Avatar is alive, you're not gonna catch him," his uncle wheedled. "Your father couldn't find him, nor could your grandfather–"
"Their sex lives didn't hinge upon finding the Avatar," Liam countered without turning around. "I will find him, I will capture him, and I will fuck my sister again!"
The bison landed in the water lightly and began swimming forward. Charlie frowned.
"C'mon, Appa!" he urged. "Fly! Yip-yip!"
The bison continued to swim, ignoring Charlie's commands.
"Oh, well," Charlie said. "He must be tired."
Charlie lay down on the bison's head, staff behind his head, and smiled as he stared at the sky. Dee shuffled over to the front end of the saddle and looked at him.
"Hey," she said.
"Hey," Charlie said calmly. "Whatcha thinking about?"
"I guess I was wondering..." Dee trailed off. "You wanna fuck?"
Charlie's eyes widened. "Whoa, what? WHAT?"
Dee looked uncomfortable. "You know. You, me, the beast with two backs?"
"Uh, no. No," Charlie said. "No. No offense, but uh..."
"What?" Dee asked angrily. "I'm not pretty enough for you?"
"It's not that!" Charlie said quickly. "It's that, uh..."
"WHAT?" Dee snarled.
"You look like a bird," Charlie said meekly.
In the back of the saddle, Dennis cracked up.
"Charlie, I think you and me are gonna get along just fine."
When the bison made it to shore, they found the whole village there to greet them. Dee grabbed Charlie by the ear and hauled him ashore.
"Charlie, this is the whole village. Whole village, this is Charlie," Dee said bluntly.
Charlie waved to them nervously. "H-hey?"
"Well hello there," an elderly woman said. "What's your name?"
"It's Charlie, Gran-Gran," Dee said bluntly. "Quit pretending you didn't hear me."
"It's Charlie," Dennis confirmed.
"Oh, well nice to meet you Charlie!" Gran-Gran said. "Tell me, what's a strapping young lad doing out here all by yourself?"
Charlie shrugged. "I 'unno. I went to sleep one night, woke up here." He grinned. "How'd you know we were coming?"
"Dennis's watchtower," Gran-Gran said, pointing to a puny structure that might have been six feet tall. "He's such a wonderful boy. Always doing such useful things. Unlike his lazy, layabout sister."
"Oh, that's it!" Dee said angrily. "Forget this, I have chores to do!"
Dee stomped away from them. The small crowd parted to let her through.
"So, Charlie," Gran-Gran said, sidling up to him and slipping an arm around his shoulders. "You must be quite a hunter to bring us all this meat."
"Meat?" Charlie asked, confused.
She gestured to the giant bison. "Of course. Once we finish stripping the meat from its bones, we'll have food for years."
Appa made a worried noise. Charlie chuckled.
"Oh, that's not meat," Charlie corrected her. "That's Appa. He's my flying bison."
"And I'm sure he'll be delicious," Gran-Gran said. "So tell me, Charlie...who's the oldest woman you've ever slept with?"
Charlie scratched his head nervously. "Uh..."
"Because, between you and me, I bet we can beat that record," Gran-Gran said.
Charlie blinked nervously and stepped out of Gran-Gran's grasp. "I think I'll, uh...I've gotta make it home, I'm sure somebody will want to know where I've been!"
Charlie quickly unfolded his staff into a glider and used his airbending to take flight. The village gasped.
"By God, it's an airbender!" one of the villagers cried. "I thought they were all extinct!"
Charlie twisted in surprise, inadvertently throwing the glider into a sharp turn. He crashed into the so-called watchtower, knocking it down and himself unconscious.
On the deck of the Fire Nation ship, Liam was sparring with two firebenders. He leapt out of the way of a pair of fireballs, but growled as he had to bend over to steady himself on the landing.
"Do it again!" Liam commanded. "I have to be ready to fight the Avatar!"
Liam's uncle groaned. "Why don't you relax, Liam? That was plenty good enough."
"No, it wasn't!" Liam said angrily. "If I'm ever going to regain my honor and get back home, I need to defeat the Avatar! He's over a hundred years old, which means he must be really experienced! I cannot fail!"
"You're not going to get a hundred years of experience in a day," Liam's uncle pointed out. "C'mon over here, and have yourself a beer. It's Earth Kingdom clear, and ice cold from the atmosphere."
Liam snarled. "I can't drink and fight! Don't you know what happens when alcohol gets too close to an open flame?"
Liam's uncle shrugged. "Suit yourself."
"And stop rhyming!" Liam complained. "It doesn't make you seem clever!"
"Would you say it's never clever?" Liam's uncle countered with a smirk.
Liam snarled and turned back to his sparring partners. "Again!"
When Charlie woke up, he was in a Water Tribe hut, on a cot next to a roaring fire. Also, he was completely naked underneath his blanket.
"What happened?" Charlie asked worriedly.
"Don't worry," Gran-Gran told him. She was sitting in a rocking chair on the other side of his bed and sipping from a mason jar. "Your clothes are over there in the corner. And I didn't do anything to you." She leaned over to whisper in his ear. "That you wouldn't want me to do, that is."
Charlie looked uncomfortable. "I'm just going to get dressed now."
Gran-Gran smiled and took a sip from her mason jar. "Go right ahead."
Charlie looked around. "Aren't you going to, uh...leave?"
"Now why would I do that?" she asked.
"To give me some privacy?" he suggested.
The old woman cracked a smile. "Don't worry about that, Charles. I've already seen...everything."
Charlie shivered, and it was only 75% because of the frigid surroundings. Quiet settled on the hut for a minute.
"So," Charlie said, deciding to break the silence. "What did that guy mean when he said he thought airbenders were extinct?"
"Oh, we haven't seen one for oh, about a hundred years, give or take," Gran-Gran said. "Thought the Fire Nation wiped them all out, we did!"
"What?" Charlie gasped, sitting straight up in the cot. "What do you mean, wiped them all out?"
"Well, in the war, you know," Gran-Gran explained.
"There's a war?" Charlie asked. He stood up. "I have to get dressed."
"Sure is!" Gran-Gran chirped. "The Fire Nation invaded and killed off all the Air Nomads close to a century ago. Darn shame, too. I always liked those Air Nomads, what with all their coming, and going...and cumming. It was always a good time when they came to town." Charlie started to pull on his pants. "HEY!"
Charlie stopped, scared. Gran-Gran stood up and walked over to him, resting a hand on his shoulder.
"Do it...slower," she said breathily.
Gran-Gran returned to her chair. Charlie continued to slowly put his pants on.
"So...the Air Nomads were wiped out?" he asked nervously.
Gran-Gran chuckled. "We thought so. But you're evidence enough that they weren't!"
"Well, I mean–" Charlie said uncomfortably.
"Oh, I know for certain," Gran-Gran said. "You've proven it to me, all right!"
Charlie continued to slowly dress in silence.
Once he was dressed, Charlie ran out of the hut. He ran into Dee and Dennis, who were arguing again.
"Well I say that you–" Dennis started to say.
"Guys!" Charlie interrupted. "I need your help!"
Both siblings rolled their eyes.
"What help could you get from a bird?" Dee asked sarcastically.
"Yeah," Dennis said. "You wrecked my watchtower!"
"It was more of a small platform," Charlie pointed out. "But you've gotta get me outta here!"
Dee and Dennis looked at each other, and then back to Charlie.
"We're listening," Dennis said.
"Okay, so I gotta get back to the Air Nomads," Charlie said. "And since they haven't been around here forever–"
"That's because they don't exist, Charlie," Dee said harshly. "They're gone. Dead. Finito. Wiped out. No longer with us."
"Corpseariffic," Dennis added.
"Extinct," Dee finished.
"What?" Charlie asked. "No, no...no! How long was I in that iceberg?"
"Gee, I dunno, Charlie!" Dee said. "Long enough for the Fire Nation to kill them all!"
"So you're saying she's not senile?" Charlie asked, gesturing back towards the hut. "That–all that happened?"
"Duh," Dennis said.
"No," Charlie said worriedly. "No, no, no no no no no! Guys! You've gotta get me outta here!"
"What's in it for us?" Dennis asked.
"Well, uh...Dee!" Charlie said. "You're a waterbender, right?"
Dennis snorted. "Not a very good one."
"Hey!" Dee complained. "I'd be better if I had a teacher!"
"You don't have a teacher?" Charlie asked. "No wonder you suck."
Dee huffed. "I'm the only firebender at the South Pole!"
"Well okay then!" Charlie said. "We head up to the North Pole, find you a waterbender, it's all good!"
Dee looked like she was considering it.
"You expect me to let you go off on your own with my sister?" Dennis asked. "You may have wrecked my watchtower, but no way am I letting you undergo that torture! No, if you're gonna hurt, it's gonna be because of me."
"Well then come along with us!" Charlie said. "What have you got to lose?"
Dee shrugged. "Nobody's gonna sleep with you here anyway."
Dennis thought about it for a few seconds before smirking. "You've got yourself a deal."
"Well we just have to figure out a way to get out of here," Charlie said. "We could take Appa...wait, shit, Appa! Is he okay?"
"He swam off," Dennis said bluntly. "Apparently he doesn't care about the good of the tribe!"
"Right, so, find Appa, get to the North Pole," Charlie said. He stopped. "How are we gonna find Appa?"
"Well, there's a Fire Nation ship beached down the shore," Dennis said. "We could see if we can get it running...but that's a lot of work."
Dee leaned over and whispered in Dennis's ear. Dennis's eyes widened.
"To the Fire Nation ship!" he declared.
The ship was decrepit and rusting, several feet inland from the shore. Nevertheless, the trio boarded it in the hopes of being able to find some way to get it running again.
"We've gotta be careful," Dennis warned. "Who knows what these Fire Nation types did to booby-trap their ship?"
Dee snorted. "Booby-trapping their own ship? Who would be dumb enough to do that?"
"I don't know!" Dennis said. "I'm just saying, we don't know what we're walking into!"
"We're walking into a ship, Dennis," Dee said bluntly. "An abandoned ship that nobody's touched for decades."
"Look, if it's really been that long, then the booby-traps probably don't work anyway," Charlie said. "Now let's hurry up and find the engine room."
The trio continued on in silence. They came to a room with a grate for a door. The door was half-up and half-down. Charlie nodded.
"Yeah, this is it," he said.
"Really?" Dee asked. "It looks more like a prison cell."
Charlie snorted. "What would a prison cell be doing on a ship?"
"Uh, holding prisoners?" Dee suggested.
"Please, we both know the Fire Nation takes no prisoners," Dennis said.
"Yeah, I mean look at this door," Charlie said. "It keeps out intruders and offers privacy, but if someone hijacks the ship it's easy to throw stuff at them. It's perfect for an engine room!"
Dee rolled her eyes. "Whatever."
Charlie and Dennis stepped inside. Dennis's foot brushed a tripwire, and the door slammed shut behind them.
"Dee, you bitch!" Dennis yelled.
"I didn't do anything!" Dee defended herself.
"Uh, guys?" Charlie said.
"WHAT?" Dee and Dennis both yelled.
Charlie pointed at the wall of the room, where a contraption had been set off. As he and Dennis watched, a fuse was lit and smoke started to billow out from it. After a few seconds, a rocket took off into the sky and exploded at the peak of its arc.
"Well that's just great," Dennis said. "We're trapped in here and just set off a signal to the Fire Nation, and it's all because of Dee!"
"Nice going, Dee!" Charlie complained.
Dee spread her arms in the universal signal for 'what the fuck is wrong with you I didn't do anything.'
"Hold on," Charlie said, looking up.
"What?" Dennis asked.
"I know how we can get out of here," he said.
"How?" Dennis asked.
"Trust me," Charlie said.
Dennis looked uncertain. Charlie grabbed him, pulled him into a hug, and used airbending to lift them through a hole in the roof.
Dee scowled. "I'll just meet you guys outside!" she called to them.
"Don't trip any more booby traps!" Dennis called back.
Drawn by the sight of the flare, Liam watched through a spyglass as Charlie and Dennis hopped down from the top of the wrecked ship and onto the ground in a way that could only be done by an airbender.
"The last airbender," Liam muttered. "Quite agile for his old age." He turned to his crew. "Wake my uncle! Tell him...I found the Avatar." He leaned down to his spyglass again and saw them running towards the village. "As well as his hiding place."