Mai's slothful emotional tendencies put her brother's life in danger.
ATTENTION: This story will contain some major spoilers and will have sporadic updates, you have been warned.
This first one is a little diddy on dear Mai, our new weapons specialist villainess. After seeing "Return To Omashu" I just had to write this on Mai, she fascinates me.
Disclaimer: None of this is mine. Not Avatar: The Last Airbender (not Mai :cries:) and definitely not the Bravery or anything associated with the aforementioned things I don't own.
S L O T H
1. Habitual disinclination to exertion; indolence; laziness.
"It's like a swollen summer
What if I'm just getting dumber?
What if I'm just in denial?
What if they come and cop my style?"
~Swollen Summer, The Bravery
She hadn't been joking when she'd said nothing of consequence happened in the conquered Omashu - ahem, pardon me, the City of New Ozai. Between the attacks made on her and her family's lives by the Resistance and the strange deadly epidemic that had recently struck the city, her life was horribly dull. Really, what reason had Mai to live?
So, naturally, she was delighted when her two best friends (Well, can two people who are nice enough but wouldn't hesitate to stab you in the back be described as friends?) visited. Finally, a bit of excitement. And Mai was ecstatic - fine, inwardly happy when Princess Azula requested her assistance in her mission. Forget what the mission is specifically, there are sure to be more opportunities to use my throwing knives while traveling with Azula and Ty Lee!
And she couldn't remember ever being so happy before Azula declared that she, she was to handle the trade off for her little brother... with Azula's consultation of course.
It was in a quiet type of euphoria that Mai, daughter of the noble governor of the City of New Ozai, mounted the construction platform on which her brother's (and Earth King Bumi's) fate would be decided. Azula and Ty Lee flanked her; Mai was slightly surprised by Azula's choice to follow her like a mere guard rather than lead their small procession - alright, her and Ty Lee.
The young weapons specialist stared emotionlessly across the platform at the representatives of the Resistance, two teenaged Water Tribers and a young boy of uncertain affiliation.
Mai doubted that any of them were very proficient in battle, though the girl carried a waterskin (A Waterbender) and the boy was packing a small arsenal of weaponry (A warrior, a novice one at best).
How... disappointing, she sighed inwardly.
She waited till the insane king's ("Hi, everybody!") metal container touched down behind her before addressing the Resistance members.
"You brought my brother?"
"He's here. We're ready to trade," replied the younger boy in a slightly hoarse voice.
Odd, thought Mai, I expected the warrior to do the talking, he is the oldest after all.
Before Mai could set up the parameters of the exchange Azula spoke up. "I'm sorry, but a thought just occurred to me. Do you mind?" she asked earnestly, tilting her head towards Mai.
Yes, because I know you, Azula. I know whatever you're going to say will hurt someone here, possibly even myself, but... I don't really care.
"Of course not, Princess Azula," she responded graciously.
Azula did not thank her, she didn't need to, she was royalty and would've gotten to speak whether Mai willed it or no. The Princess knew this as did Mai, and Azula knew she knew.
"We're trading a two year old for a king." The Firebender prodigy looked up at the exposed face of the aforesaid king, "A powerful Earthbending king?"
Bumi nodded helpfully, "Mm hmm."
Azula refocused her attention on Mai. "It just doesn't seem like a fair trade does it?"
Mai froze. What're you suggesting, Azula? We all know how you feel about your brother, are you asking for me to feel the same way for mine?
She turned to face the three Resisters, her murky yellow eyes seeking her brother. There he was, held securely in the Water warrior's arms. Tom-Tom's pudgy face was turned away from her as he stared over the boy's blue clad shoulder. She could barely discern his joyous gurgling.
Mai recalled watching him play and even joining him in his inscrutable games on warm, sunny days. Then observing her mother settling his small body in his crib on cool, humid nights. Her mother, what would she think of her if she did what Azula was asking? What would her father think of her if she sacrificed his only son for the good of the Fire Nation?
Her eyes narrowed slightly as she studied her brother from a distance. Tom-Tom was cute for an infant true, but he was an infant nonetheless. A mere drooling two year old. Two years he had been with them, surely Mai's parents hadn't grown too attached to him. It had only been a couple of years, her parents were young still, they could have another son.
"You're right," unwanted sorrow made itself known inside her chest, she brushed it away nonchalantly. She stalked forward, signaling for the king's prison box to be raised by holding up a strangely manicured hand. "The deal's off!"
The king cackled crazily as the crane raised his crate, "See you all later!"
The kids stared up at the rapidly rising metallic box in mortification. Their fear of losing such a powerful asset to their side reflected in their wide eyes.
"Bumi!" cried the brightly dressed boy as he bolted forward. Azula dashed away to meet his charge, sending out a blast of brilliant blue fire. Mai was just as amazed as Azula when the child leapt up, soaring over the crackling flames. His orange cap fell off as he opened up a glider in mid leap, exposing a blue arrow tattoo that had become infamous amongst Fire Nation citizens.
"The Avatar!" gasped the Princess. Azula smirked as she watched the boy fly up in wide circles in pursuit of the king. "My lucky day..." The Firebender ran into the shadow of the catwalks surrounding the massive statue of the Fire Lord.
Mai watched as the two Water Tribe teenagers made to retreat, smothering a wince as an opportune strike by Ty Lee sent the warrior sprawling. He just barely spared Tom-Tom from being crushed by twisting around so he landed on his back.
Mai fired some arrows at the enemy, soon followed by a few daggers, trying to ignore the glaring fact that her baby brother was amongst the targets. She decides she needs to work on the whole not caring thing as she and Ty Lee combat the Waterbender.
AN: I hope you liked it. Review please!