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the extreme of winter

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It had started snowing an hour ago. Kuvira was glad she wasn’t the only one new to it; about half her troops wandered around, staring at the sky. From deeper into the camp she could hear cheers and shouts. She could imagine the few waterbenders in her army were very popular right now.

Catching sight of a particular large flake floating down towards her, Kuvira darted a quick glance around good—no one was watching—and stuck her tongue out. She had to bounce forward on her toes to catch it, and it melted immediately.

“It’s just water.”

Kuvira whirled around, cheeks warming when she spotted Baatar. He’d suddenly stepped around the corner, breathing into his cupped hands. “I know that,” she muttered defensively.

“We should move camp tomorrow before we get snowed in.”

“Is that a possibility?”

“If this keeps up.” Baatar raised his face to the sky with a frown on his face—it turned into a scowl as flakes settled on his glasses, fogging the lenses.

“You don’t like it,” she observed. 

He stuffed his hands in the pockets of his overcoat and shrugged. “I don’t have any particular feelings about it. It’s cold, it’s wet, and it may look pretty now, but it gets pretty disgusting once everyone’s trampled through it.”

“Those sound like pretty strong feelings to me.”

Baatar grunted, and shrugged again.

“Don’t ruin this for the troops,” she warned, “they’re having fun.”

That made him laugh. “Don’t worry, everyone’s safe from my anti-snow propaganda. Even you. I’ll leave you to your snow tasting. But join me in Varrick’s workshop later? We’re going to see if we can heat up his home-brew engine fuel liquor without it exploding.

“For military applications of course,” he added hastily, but he was grinning as he said it.