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Hiro

"It's all a joke. It's just a joke."

0 · 305 views · located in The Rise of Zhi

a character in “Avatar: The Rise of Zhi”, as played by almostinsane

Description

Hiro

Image


Age: 21
Gender: Male
Bender: Yes, Fire.
Nation: Fire Nation

Bending/Fighting Style


Hiro has been using dual swords in conjunction with his bending for ever since he old enough to train with both. Thus, Hiro's bending is seamlessly interwoven with his swordsmanship, though he has never allowed it to be a clutch. There have been times where he was disarmed or when bending has been a bad idea, such as in a stealth mission or assassination. Thus, Hiro has trained to use both styles alone or woven together, going from one, to the other, to both in a heartbeat. Hiro's style of fighting is robust and agressive, like most styles of firebending, though he has mastered the Dancing Dragon style which he blends together with more mainstream styles. He is capable of great acrobatic feats and creating walls of fire in order to dodge and block attacks. Hiro is capable of bending lightning but not blue fire. Hiro has also picked up acrobatics, subterfuge, and other stealth techniques in order to break in and navigate buildings, fortresses, and other structures when it is dark.

Personality

It would be charitable to call Hiro jaded and it wouldn't be necessarily wrong to label Hiro as an insane sociopath. Hiro gives off the impression that he just doesn't care whether he lives or dies. Indeed, sometimes it seems like he wants to die, but then he fights tooth and nail to get out of whatever battle he is in alive, usually with a multitude of dead bodies. Hiro's philosophy is that life is random and cruel, no matter how people may want to dress it up or disguise it. In battle, he has often killed without remorse or compassion. Indeed, on more than one occasion, he has laughed as he burned someone alive. Cynical and irreverent, he often mocks people with high ideals, goals, or any sort of belief that the human race is anything other than what it is. Fairly promiscuous, Hiro is good-looking and well knows it. He has been with quite a few women, but not as many as one would think. Hiro is a heavy drinker and quick with a dark joke. Yet, Hiro also possesses a volatile temper and can turn nasty or violent when provoked.

Despite these traits and his insistence that there is no such thing as "honor", Hiro still possesses traits which can be defined as honorable. Despite his life as a mercenary, Hiro refused to harm women and children and refuses to tolerate such behavior in his soldiers. He is also one to make sure the men and women are in condition to fight and makes sure that they don't get into too much trouble.

History

Hiro was born as the youngest son of one of the five Fire Lords in the Fire Nation vying for power and control of the rest of the country. Though not close to his older brother, who is five years his senior, and his father, with whom he had a strained relationship with, Hiro was close to his mother, Lady Chosa. He spent a lot of time with her when he wasn't playing with the children of the palace guards or servants and he loved to hear the stories she told him. She wanted him to grow up as a moral and spiritual man, though he has always had a certain talent for fighting. He was the most hurt, besides possibly his father, from his mother's death at the hands of a ninja. When he grew older, Hiro joined his father's soldiers and even received a small commission as an officer. On the battlefield, he made a name for himself as a soldier and commander until, when he was 17, he was injured and left for dead. Fortunately for him, a family from a nearby village took him in and nursed him back to health. He even developed a sort of friendship with their daughter and, when he was ready to leave, he promised to visit again, not revealing his parentage. When he returned home, however, he learned that the village he had taken refuge in was in enemy territory and his older brother burned it to the ground. He was horrified and got into an argument with both his remaining family members, but his father rebuked him. He returned to the army and, with the passing of time, noticed the depravities and darkness in human nature. He grew jaded and cynical, growing to believe that life was just a huge cosmic joke and, inevitably, he grew crueler and uncaring as time went by until, at last, he deserted with the men under his command, deciding didn't want to take orders from his father.

He and his men sailed to the Earth Kingdom and became one of the several mercenary companies prowling the countryside, taking the coin of whatever petty warlord would hire them. They soon became named the Blue Spirits for the Blue Spirit masks they don at times, particularly at nightfall for intimidation purposes. Soon enough, though, as mercenaries died and others replaced them, the company grew to be a mix of Fire Nation and Earth Kingdom warriors and benders. Hiro doesn't much care who hires them, so long as they pay. He has recently been hired to capture the Avatar, whom Hiro thinks is the biggest joke of all...

Image


Goals

Hiro doesn't really have a set goal. He can't really return home and the war is his lifeblood. He simply wishes to fight, drink, and enjoy himself until he dies, probably on the battlefield.

Likes

  • Firebending
  • Fighting
  • Tea
  • Swords
  • Meditation
  • Women
  • Drinking
  • Intimidating/riling up people in power

Dislikes

  • Lying
  • Naivete
  • Spirit World activity
  • Being reminded of what his mother would say
  • Hurting children
  • (lethally) harming women, not counting fighters

So begins...

Hiro's Story

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Character Portrait: Hiro
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Hiro


One Week Ago

Quin Bei Fong was a patient man but this was ridiculous! While engaged in battle with much stronger warlords, he made use of less than honorable tactics, meeting some rather unsavory individuals, but every one of them showed respect towards, if not him, then at least his pocketbook. This ruffian just seemed to laugh at him behind his cheap iron masked, flanked by two similarly masked men, one with the stane of an earthbender and the other, a firebender to Quin's experienced eye. The man sat across from him in his study, elbows digging into his very expensive desk as hel azily propped up his chin with his knuckles. Quin could barely contain the anger in his voice as he spoke.

"I am already offering you a generous amount of gold. That should be enough for you and your men, Blue Spirit!" he told him, saying the name with contempt. He honestly did not understand bandits' fondness for folktales.

"I want double. You can obviously afford it. Besides, you do not have a choice in the matter. With Otoki hiring ol' Kraken, he will have the Avatar within the month. If that happens, either Otoki kills him and your men surrender in droves with the belief he isinvicable or the Avatar joins him and your men surrender in droves to stay among the living. Then when Otoki gets you..."

"Fine! Fine! Koh take you, you will have half..."


Present Day...

Hiro chuckled at the memory. Quin Bei Fong was as much a joke as his father and the other Fire Lords back home: blustering about honor even as he planned on stabbing his neighbors in the back for power. In fact, he was even more of a joke. He thought he could get the Avatar on his side. Hiro had been instructed to "invite" the Avatar to the Bei Fong Clan Compound and not take no for answer.

Hiro stiffled the urge to disturb the leaves of the tree he hid in to watch the entrane to the Earth Sage Temple. He took in the events and smiled slightly. Every one of his 35 men were prepared to ambush the Avatar when Hiro stopped him in the forest to deliver Quin's thinly veiled demands for his allegiance and the Avatar, naturally, refused.. He smiled. That Water Tribe girl should learn to recognize when people were digging for information.

When the girl, Akara, had stumbled into their camp that night , he thought he was undone. He had pretended they were just merenaries passing through (well, he didn't need to pretend with the mercenary part}. His mask had been off then, he remembered idly. He commandeered her healing talents for his men's wounds from a skirmish they had on the road and shielded her from his more disrespectful men. Slowly, he pried information from her on the friends she was "travelling" with. She truly did hide their mission, but he got what he wanted: their numbers and their bending elements even as she thought she was successful in hiding their purpose.

He let her go when she was done healing, of corse. He gave her his word.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Avatar Zhi Character Portrait: Bo Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Avatar Fukoda
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(Reposted to the correct place. Sorry about that!)

The setting changes from Avatar: The Last Airbender to The Rise of Zhi

Setting

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Character Portrait: Avatar Zhi Character Portrait: Bo Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Avatar Fukoda
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(Repost, since I just realized I posted it in the wrong place.)

In the weeks it had taken them to sail back and forth from the Northern Water Tribe, Akara had learned just how fragile the state of their world had been. The Northern Water Tribe was reluctant to even teach her the basics of healing; it was only after she'd retold her entire life story and after Bo had vouched for her that they agreed. Bo had advised her not to mention the training and mentoring she had done, for fear that the Northerners would view Akara's learning of offensive water bending as disrespect to their culture. After all, they only allowed women to heal, not to fight, and although Akara had hoped they would make an exception, hundreds of years of culture and tradition would not be undone by a stranger.

Their send-off had been less than amicable. Akara experienced great difficulty with merely bending the water, let alone finding the spiritual energy within to use it as a healing agent. Bo, ever vigilant, encouraged her not to give up, reminding her of the success she'd quickly found during their voyage, and of all the training that was still to come. Water was the opposite of Earth, and if Akara had been raised her entire life as an earth bender, it only made sense that she would find adversity as a new water bender.

Finally, Akara's determination had paid off, and it was no sooner after she'd finally got the hang of healing that the Northerners bade them farewell. Akara never even had the opportunity to ask about her mom, her family, why her mother had gone to the Earth Kingdom, and what had been the cause of her death. It was forsaking, certainly, and it made her feel all the lonelier in the whole of the universe. If it had not been for Bo - she was afraid to think on it any more.

With the news that she and Bo would be traveling back to the Earth Kingdom in order to mentor the Avatar, Akara felt her heart grow heavier, and her moods grow darker. In many ways, Akara blamed the Avatar for the ruin that had come to her home, and the disunity of the four nations. Certainly Akara had never known Avatar Fukoda personally, but wasn't it the Avatar's duty to establish and maintain peace in the world? How could it have come to all of this? What had Avatar Fukoda been doing while everything was falling apart?

The night before Bo's first session with Avatar Zhi, Akara was restless. She'd left their quarters with several of Bo's water bending scrolls and dipped into the surrounding woods. She'd barely removed the scrolls from her pouch before she'd been approached by a man, and his band of leering, smirking soldiers. They were wounded from a recent battle, and she'd taken them as harmless mercenaries. And despite her initial feeling of dread, the man, Hiro, had kept his word about her safety.

Perhaps that was what had troubled her the most, the question of, "Why?" He seemed interested in her affairs, and the people with whom they were traveling. She felt that she'd been careful with divulging too much information, and perhaps naively believed it was his attempt at striking up conversation to make her feel more comfortable while she healed. He'd taken her chin in his hand, his eyes were so...

Akara shook her head. This is foolish, she thought to herself. It would be best not to think on these things. With that, Akara shoveled the last bit of rice into her mouth and made for the Earth Temple. If the Avatar was to learn water bending with Bo, Akara must be present to show her Sifu her support.

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Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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Jian Hei Lei


Two Days Ago

In a mountain tavern in the snowy peaks and in the middle of the night, laughter and joyful celebration could be heard. If one were a few Li away, Hei Lei was sure the noise would be heard as if it were just a few feet away. "Hey Lil' Miss! Wanna have a drink with us?" A drunken mercenary asked the doll like girl. He placed his arm around her and she wrinkled her noise at the stench of liquor rising off of him. "I prefer warm milk." She smiled politely and removed his arm. "C'mon~" He reached out to grab her arm, but quickly brought it back when a knife flew right by. If he hasn't moved his hand it would have cost him some fingers. "Jie, leave Hei alone. We all agreeded we must respect each other's differences." A red haired woman called from a table. Hei smirked and patted Jie's arm. "I'm not interested of making my liver shrivel up. Thank you for the offer." As he left Hei resumed looking out the icy window. In the month that had passed a copious amount of bounty hunters and mercenaries had all joined forces for the biggest pay day of all. Their target was the avatar. However all of them were in it for many different reasons. Some wanted money. Others a challenged. A few wanted something they could just kill. Strangely a small handful wished to see the new hope of the land. Hei was one of those few.

A serving girl bringing her warm milk disrupted her thinking. She bowed her thanks to the girl and continued into her thoughts. It seemed unlikely with so many different drives that teamwork was possible, but that wasn't all was true. With a bounty like this everyone became a family. In two days this "family" would storm the Earth Sage Temple and capture the target. Much risk was involved. A spy had reported three master benders for fire, water, and earth.

Hei's amber eyes swept over the group. She knew at least one was a master, or she hoped. "I just hope the Avatar is truly someone who can bring about the necessary changes to this kingdom." She mumbled. In one gulp she finished her cup of milk an went off to bed.

Present

The group had choosen a nearby forest by the temple to make camp. Hidden in a tree, Hei sat cleaning her flute. They had to wait for the spy to signal the attack, which was when the Avatar was alone of course. They mixed-matched group had been sitting and waiting for a few hours already. However a scout had brought some seemingly unfortunate news. "To the west there was another band of mercenaries. I don't know how many they are, but I glimpsed their masks." He said out of breath to the red haired woman, Bai Xue as Hei recalled. Bai Xue's face spread into a grin. "It's those damn Blue Spirits." She turned to the group. "Looks like we have competition today folks. Some blue masked peonies think they can steal our bounty." She paused for effect. "Are you going to let that happen?!" Hei Lei got ready to dive into the brush. No doubt this group was going to yell and alert their position. However it never came. When She turned to look at the group they had raised their blades in the air as their agreement. "They're not as dumb as I thought." She smiled a bit cheerful. Out of boredom she began to assess what little info she knew of the Blue Spirits. "One, they wear blue spirit masks after the folk tale. Two, they are all fire and earth benders. Three, they are mercenaries. Four, their target is the avatar." She said aloud and sighed. Truthfully she hated competing with others. What she hated more though were others trying to steal her targets.

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Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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(Posted two times sorry.)

Setting

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Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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Hiro


Hiro was taking in the new arrival. He looked to be an airbender, perhaps the Avatar's new mentor? He looked different from normal airbenders. He was dressed for battle and carried around a katana, something that the pacifist idiots would frown upon. He smiled slightly beneath his mask. Really, he'd be an interesting target if it came down to fighting him, but business came first. His target was the Avatar and Hiro never failed in a mission. He heard someone take a position beside him on one of the tree branches. He cocked his head.

"What is it, Li?" he asked. He knew what the man looked like without turning his head. Li eschewed the Blue Spirit mask in favor of facepaint after the manner of a Yu Yuan Archer, which made sense, considering he was one or had been one. Hiro wasn't completely sure where the Yu Yuan Archers stood on desertion. He held his bow in his hand and a quiver was strapped to his back. On his belt, hung a Blue Spirit mask. His black hair was tied into a neat ponytail.

"We have company. It appears that we're not the only ones after the Avatar, Prince Hiro," Li stated evenly. Hiro frowned. He didn't know why the man continued to call him by his title. He had rejected it long ago. Still, he had given up on trying to correct him. Instead, he gave a wry chuckle.

"Then it's time we meet them. Round up the others," Hiro ordered.

***

Soon enough, Hiro had landed in a clearing with two of his men beside him. The others were, of course, hidden. If these rivals were smart, then they'd expect that. If not, then it'd make things easier. His own men were on the lookout for any surprises. Hiro approached clearing, cocking his head when he saw a female. He knew her. He laughed aloud.

"Little Butterfly. Didn't know that you would be the type interested in the Avatar. I'd have thought you'd believe in him and his job to "maintain balance" and all that nonsense. It's good that your're finally going along with the joke, but don't think just because I'm happy for you that I'll go easy on you. That fop Bei Fong is offering quite a lot of gold for the Avatar and I'm collecting," Hiro told her. He cocked his head to the side thoughtfully.

"Maybe you're not interested in capturing the Avatar. Maybe you're sabotaging this group and trying to stop other groups like us so that the Avatar can "restore balance" and those other dreams."

Setting

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Character Portrait: Gao Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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Image
The world was vast, lurid, and nature was replaced with ice. Here the trees were translucent and crystalline, their leaves made out of hoarfrost, capturing the light of the sun, but never melting. His feet met the ground covered in an expansive white sheet, and when his eyes traveled down to view the state of his flesh, he saw that his toes had turned blue, and that they were numb, unable to feel the dead Earth underneath. Silently, in this frozen wasteland, stood a man that existed with his body still, questioning whether or not he was still alive. When his arm moved the joints seemed to creak, and as his palm approached his chest the stomach stuck behind his ribcage sunk, and when contact was made, he felt nothing.

Before opening his eyes the man’s hand shot out underneath his pillow, his appendages naturally wrapping around a handle bar of a curved dagger, and his eyes shot open as his previously inert body was shocked back to life. Gāo twisted his body, a blanket slipping off of his form as he sprung, knees pressing into the thin feather mattress, and he pointed the blade at the throat of a terrified appearing servant girl.

Oh, so his life wasn’t being threatened after all.

The young man blinked, and when he comprehended that the girl, dressed in dull, casual, flowing peasants clothes, didn’t mean to stab him to death, sleep sunk back into his mind, causing his muscles to relax. “My apologies, gūniang.” At this hour Gāo’s voice held a sense of lethargy, and the woman finally appeared to breath as he yawned, lowering the dagger to his side. Still, the woman eyed his warily, and though she made an effort to not allow her eyes to linger on the scattered scars on the left, exposed side of his chest, the attempt was in vain. He could practically read her like a scroll, a scroll about paranoid myths and monsters nonetheless. Though, her suspicion wasn’t her fault, he had pulled a weapon on her, and people did not sleep with a weapon, didn’t become feral and offensive when in their most vulnerable of states, without reason.

They exchanged very little words; the woman revealing to him that he was in a hotel and that unless he was to pay for another night, it’s been politely requested that he leave. This told him a few things. One, that he wasn’t in the Earth Sage Temple, where he was supposed to be, and two, someone had already paid for the room, although he couldn’t remember if it had been himself or someone else. Judging by the slight discomfort in his head, he was able to conclude that he would never find out what had exactly happened last night, and instead of dwelling on something rather sporadically frequent for him, Gāo dressed in his hanfu from last night, slowly tying the sash of the dull jade garment. He ran his fingers over lapel of the upper portion, smoothing down the white shirt underneath, and after a moment of debate, actually put on the lax, white trousers underneath the qun as well.

It wasn’t anything special, borderline peasant’s cloths, of a slightly higher quality. Eventually he convinced his body to move, walking barefoot out into the merchant town, and only sign of civilization aside from the Temple in the northern Earth Kingdom territory, settled within the mountains where the air was crisp and people were peaceful. He breathed in, feeling the earth beneath his bare feet as he meandered through the street, running a hand through his tousled, deep brown hair, allowing it to soon rest around his collar bones and shoulder blades once again.

Now he remembered. As much as he truly enjoyed the languid days in the temple, occasionally teaching Zhi, but mostly drifting through a placid life with sleep and meditation, he had grown bored, restless even. Therefore, he came down here to drink, until apparently, he was so unstable that he had to pass out at the only hotel, and then here he was, walking past farmers selling fruit, purchasing a mostly harmless appearing apple, and finding his way to the path that would bring him back to the temple. Of course, he could make his trip quicker if he felt like engaging in some morning exercise, but with his body still whispering to him about sleep, and the sweet fruit being consumed, he decided that today of all days wouldn’t be the day that they would suddenly need his presence back at the temple. Therefore, he continued on his marry way with bird songs caressing his eardrums he walked slowly, quietly approaching a clearing, and kept his eyes on the various branches caging the sky, relieved that his dream had yet to become a tragic reality.

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Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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Jian Hei Lei


Hei watched curiously when a trio of men approached their group. The leader and probably two of his best guards. What peaked her interest was the fact the leader seemed to know her, though she had never met him in her life. "My reputation seems to be greater than I expected." She smirked. His voiced seemed familiar though...she'd heard it before...He started the usually exchange of words between competitors and then talking about her reasons for going after the avatar. "Why should my reasons matter to you? I doubt that matters in a competition." She responded nonchalantly and retied the black silk scarf she had around the lower half of her face.

"Or maybe you wish to remove your competition now?" The group tensed at Hei's notion. An earth bender in the group who was shifting rocks in his hand supposedly out of boredom, made them collide three times. Clack, clack, clack! It was the code way of saying they were surrounded or literally danger.

Bai Xue bended the water in her canteen around her arm and froze it around her fist. Around her knuckles the ice had formed dangerous spikes. The others in the group followed suit. Hei Lei merely observed. "All of this over money. I'll just say my reason for going after the Avatar is better than yours." She looked at the surrounding forest around them, listening for any movement. "Are we really going to jeopardize our positions over a little rivalry?"

The setting changes from The Rise of Zhi to Avatar: The Last Airbender

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Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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(Posted in wrong place. Sorry.)

The setting changes from Avatar: The Last Airbender to The Rise of Zhi

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Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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Hiro


"Or maybe you wish to remove your competition now?"

Hiro chuckled upon hearing this statement, his mouth forming into an anticipatory grin at the thought of another battle so soon. His two bodyguards drew their weapons along with his men in the trees. He could see Li aiming an arrow at the man beside the butterfly. Still, Hiro managed to reign in his instincts. He shook his head. Fighting right now wouldn't be convenient for any of them.

"All of this over money. I'll just say my reason for going after the Avatar is better than yours."

With this, Hiro couldn't help but laugh heartily. His homework had been correct. She was one of those types. He knew those types. They fought for some higher calling or cause and would be willing to sacrifices themselves or, in some cases, their own men in order to serve their cause. He laughed for a full minute.

"Now, I thought I was supposed to be the one telling jokes here. Don't you see the mask? The Blue Spirit mocks and laughs at the mortal world because the world is just a joke, but he's the only one who gets it. It is not a good joke, but he just goes along with it. He's seen human society's true face and chooses to be a parody of it. So, no, my reason trumps yours. I'm going along with the joke too without excuses or high causes."

He grinned behind his mask at the sight of some of the greener or more superstitious men in Butterfly's group taking steps back. Laughter, if used in the right way, could provoke more fear than the most vile threat.

"Oh, I'm doing it for the gold too."

"Are we really going to jeopardize our positions over a little rivalry?"

Hiro shrugged, making a show of considering her words.

"Maybe not. What do you suggest we do? Team up? Take turns? Take positions in different parts of the forest and see which group the Avatar stumbles into?"

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Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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Jian Hei Lei


An attack was provoked and the Blue Spirits appeared, all of them. It seemed that a fight would break out when the leader stopped them. He began to mock her ideals and proving his point. His laughter seemed to unnerve the group behind her and they took some tentative steps back.

Hei raised an eyebrow in curiosity when he finished preaching."If life is such a joke why do we live it?" She responded to the blue masked man. If she thought about he was one of the few who deemed humans dark and evil. There was no use in arguing with him, but she wanted to. "I could have chosen to go along with that joke. Though I had a promise holding me back. An old friend promised to see me again." That's odd...I told a stranger about myself. Se though and then shrugged turning attention back to the masked strangers.

"Maybe not. What do you suggest we do? Team up? Take turns? Take positions in different parts of the forest and see which group the Avatar stumbles into?"

"A competition is a competition. It's just whoever gets the avatar first." Bai Xue finally spoke up. She flipped her red hair over her shoulder and glared at the leader with a haughty look. "I can assure you we will win." Hei merely sighed and trudged off to her tree and sat among the the roots. Suddenly she felt another like someone else was beside her. She turned her head slowly to the left and came face to face with a Blue Spirit member. Apparently it was an attempt to scare her. "Nice to meet you." She said nonchalantly to it. In response it cocked its head "JUST WATCH! We won't be shown up by the likes of you!" Bai Xue yelled. "Whatever is taking that spy so long. He better hurry up." Hei grumbled under breath.

The setting changes from The Rise of Zhi to Avatar: The Last Airbender

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Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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(Wrong place, again. Ignore.)

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Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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(Sorry. Ignore this one.)

The setting changes from Avatar: The Last Airbender to The Rise of Zhi

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Hiro


"If life is such a joke why do we live it?"

"It is the only choice. We are born in this wretched world and we try to make as much sense of it as we can, propping up illusions or morality and righteousness. In the end, our nature contradicts our dreams and we feel the punchline. Perhaps the Spirits gave us the Avatar to stop it, but not even the Avatar can change human nature," Hiro told her, his tone almost resigned.

"I could have chosen to go along with that joke. Though I had a promise holding me back. An old friend promised to see me again."

Behind his mask, Hiro's eyes widened. Could she be? No, she was dead and wasn't coming back. He had seen the bodies, smelled them burning from the fires of his brother's and their father's soldiers' making. He had begun to realize the truth about humanity then. He gave her a hollow laugh, one devoid of all mirth.

"I promised an old friend I would see her again. She died. Killed by my own family and their soldiers."

He ignored one of Butterfly's soldiers, but he responded nonetheless as himself and his men left, leaping through the trees as they did, like real spirits and shadows.

"Then the race is on. It will be better we take different positions if we do not want to fight each other as well as the Avatar. His group may only head in two directions: the mountains or the forest. My men are already positioned in the forest. If you take position in the mountains, then he will run into one of us."

The setting changes from The Rise of Zhi to Avatar: The Last Airbender

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Character Portrait: Hiro Character Portrait: Hei Lei Jian
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(/.-)

The setting changes from Avatar: The Last Airbender to The Rise of Zhi

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Jian Hei Lei


"I promised an old friend I would see her again. She died. Killed by my own family and their soldiers."

Hei sat confused. Was that him? No. He was still serving in the fire nation army. He wouldn't be this mercenary who considered life a joke. Besides, if he wasn't a soldier anymore he probably retired an settled down already or...was dead. She remembered the day she found him vividly. He was near death. Her second parents back to health and she was left to watch him. She smiled slightly. That person was someone she considered a friend.

"Then the race is on. It will be better we take different positions if we do not want to fight each other as well as the Avatar. His group may only head in two directions: the mountains or the forest. My men are already positioned in the forest. If you take position in the mountains, then he will run into one of us."

"Geez...it's not my decision. Bai Xue is the leader of this group." She mumbled. Bai Xue was still glaring after the Blue Spirits. "So boss. What are we going to do?" Someone asked Bai Xue. It was the spy. If he had returned it meant the Avatar was constantly with someone. No reason and way to attack the Monastery now."Considering our numbers. We'll split up. One in the mountains. Another the forest this will double our chance of running into the avatar." Bai began splitting the group up. She saved Hei for last. "You can pick wherever you want to go. I'll see you soon kid." Then the red haired leader left with the group heading into the forest. Obviously she had a bone to pick with the Blue Spirits.

Hei watched her leave and then climbed to the top of a tree. She remembered her father telling her of a time when the fire nation army burned paths through forests. There should be a forgotten path between the mountain and forest. With that thought Hei plunged into the forest as well.

When she reached her destination there were only bushes and rocks for cover. She selected one near the path at random and sat behind it. Nearby was a mountain spring. It's pristine water standing out against the scarred ground. It was beautiful, but Hei had to remain focused on the mission. "Now begins the wait." She looked around. Even if the avatar didn't come this way she could easily have run to the forest or mountains if the avatar began to fight with either group. I may have said it was a competition but I can't tolerate having my target snatched away from me.

The setting changes from The Rise of Zhi to Avatar: The Last Airbender

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Bo Character Portrait: Gao Character Portrait: Hiro
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Akara folded her arms across her chest and listened intently to the Sages' words. At the mention of mercenaries, her brow arched, and something inside her gut began churning. She remembered the night not too long ago...

The men in the forest, the darkness, the masks hanging on their belts. They'd been heavily armed, and gossiped like they'd just returned from a party or tavern. Had it been so? Akara absentmindedly began back pedaling, finding a place at the rear of the group. She ran her index finger over her lips, along her jaw line, and she began to shake. What she perceived to be idle banter with the handsome man was a terrible mistake. She'd told him about her friends, the benders with whom she was traveling, and about the Avatar's presence in the temple. She was so foolish to not realize they were mercenaries, and that the "party" they were returning from was most likely a terrible slaughtering or bloody misdeed.

Akara's eyes fell on Bo, who she knew would be disappointed most of all. How could she confess? These mercenaries were here because of her own doing, and she'd put them all in danger. And while she couldn't honestly say that she cared much for the Avatar, or his arrogant decision to endanger himself by facing an unknown force, she did find that she cared about Bo's life, and perhaps even Gao's, whose mannerisms she'd found initially off-putting had somehow endeared him to Akara.

And now these fools were talking about staying and fighting? No, this was wrong.

She took quick steps to Bo's side and gently took her elbow, trying to pull her away. "Bo, please, a word." She swept her eyes across the rest of the group, praying they would be too involved to pay any notice.

The setting changes from Avatar: The Last Airbender to The Rise of Zhi

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Character Portrait: Hiro
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The forest was a perfect place for an ambush, Hiro noted. Those who could hid themselves in the trees while those who did not have the acrobatic abilities to hide or fight in tree hid in the underbrush. He felt quite confident in his odds. He had thirty-five men in all, ten of them firebenders, ten of them earthbenders, and fifteen of them non-benders. Each of his men were armed with a weapon of some kind, even the benders in order to augment their bending or to have something to fall back on. Hiro, for his part, stood in the middle of the road, swords sheathed and his arms crossed. Just a half mile away was the Earth Sage's Temple.

Perhaps Hiro was a bit cocky, using himself as bait, but his orders had been to deliver the Bei Fongs' invitation first before he tried to captured the Avatar and he would deliver the message. When the Avatar refused, they would attack. It was a simple plan, but then again, Hiro liked simple plans. Out of the corner of his eye, he spotted Li, perched in a tree with his bow, scanning not down the road, but around the area where his men were stationed. It was important that the ambushers not become the ambushed, after all.