01x16 - The Deserter

Water.

Earth.

Fire.

Air.

Long ago, the four nations lived together in harmony.

Then, everything changed when the Fire Nation attacked.

Only the Avatar, master of all four elements, could stop them.

But when the world needed him most, he vanished.

A hundred years passed, and my brother and I discovered the new Avatar an airbender named Aang.

And although his airbending skills are great.

He has a lot to learn before he's ready to save anyone.

But I believe Aang can save the world.

Book One: Water Chapter Sixteen: The Deserter This should give us a good idea of what's around here.

See if you can find a menu, I'm starving.

I bet we'll find something to eat here! The Fire Days Festival.

Fire Nation cultural exhibits jugglers, benders, magicians.

This'd be a great place for me to study some real firebenders! You might wanna rethink that.

Look at this.

Hey, a poster of me! A wanted poster.

This is bad.

I think we better keep moving.

I have to learn firebending at some point, and this could be my only chance to watch a master up close.

I guess we could check it out.

What!? You want to walk into a Fire Nation town where they're all fired up with all their, you know, fire? We'll wear disguises and if it looks like trouble, we'll leave.

Yeh, because we always leave before we get into trouble.

You guys stay out of sight here while we go to the festival.

Ready disguises! It's like you're a whole different person.

Let's go.

I think we need some new disguises.

Where are we gonna get masks like that? Get your genu-ine Fire Festival masks here! That was surprisingly easy.

Hey, there's some food.

Finally! What do you have? Flaming fire flakes! Best in town.

I'll take 'em! Aaahh! Hot! Hot! "Flaming fire flakes" hot? What do you know? Hey, look at this.

Don't worry loyal citizens! No one can surprise the Fire Lord! Oh, no! Aang, hold on! Where are we going? I don't know, but there's a big crowd so it must be good.

Knowing the Fire Nation, it's probably an execution.

I gotta learn that trick! Thank you! For my next trick I need a volunteer from the audience! Oh! Oh! Me! Me! What do you think you're doing? I want to get a closer look.

It's better that we don't attract any attention to ourselves.

How about you, little lady? Awww, She's shy.

Leeet's give her some encouragement, folks! Awww! That could'a been me.

This next trick is called "Taming the Dragon.

" You will be my captured princess! Don't worry, young maiden! I will tame this fiery beast! It's too strong, I can't hold it! We gotta help her! No, we don't want to make a scene! The rope, it's breaking! Hey, you tryin' to upstage me, kid? Hey! That kid's the Avatar! I think it's time to go.

Follow me! I can git ya outta here! There they are! Over there! I'm calling Appa! I hope he can really hear that bison whistle! This way! Okay! Not this way! Appa! Down here! Nice touch setting off the fireworks.

You seem to really know your explosives.

I'm familiar.

You're a Fire Nation soldier! Was.

My name's Chey.

I serve a man.

More than a man really, he's a myth, but he's real, a living legend, Jeong Jeong the Deserter.

He was a Fire Nation general, or wait, was he an admiral? He was very highly ranked, we get it.

Yeh! Way up there! But he couldn't take the madness any more.

He's the first person ever to leave the army and live.

I'm the second, but you don't get to be a legend for that.

That's okay though.

Jeong Jeong's a firebending genius.

Some say he's mad but he's not! He's enlightened.

You mean there's a firebender out here who's not with the Fire Lord? We've gotta go see him! He can train me! We're not gonna go find some crazy firebender! He's not crazy! He's a genius! And he's the perfect person to train the Avatar! That's why I followed you into the festival.

Look, thanks for the help, but we're leaving for the north pole in the morning.

Sokka, this could be my only chance to meet a firebending master who would actually be willing to teach me.

It can't hurt just to talk to him.

That's what you said about going to the festival! Why doesn't anyone ever listen to me!? Don't move! Jeong Jeong told you not to look for Avatar! Hold on, you know these guys!? Oh yeh! Lin Yi's an old buddy! Right Lin Yi? Shut up! Keep moving.

Go on.

He sees you only.

Oh that's okay, we can chat later.

Is that where Jeong Jeong is? I need to talk to him right away.

No! You wait there.

Go now! Don't worry! Everything'll be fine.

He's a great man, great man! So, the Avatar was here and you let slip away? Yes, sir, but other than that the festival went off without a hitch! No fights.

Theft was way down.

I don't care about your local crime rates! Which way did they go? They headed into the forest, up the river I suspect.

Ready the river boats.

We're going after the Avatar.

What happened? Can I see Jeong Jeong now? He won't see you.

He's very angry that I brought you here.

He wants you to leave immediately.

Finally! Let's hit the road.

Why won't he see me? He says you're not ready.

Says you haven't mastered waterbending and earthbending yet.

Wait, how does he know that? He saw the way you walked into camp.

He can tell.

I'm going in anyway! Get out.

Master, I need to learn firebending.

Only a fool seeks his own destruction.

I'm the Avatar.

It's my destiny to Destiny? What would a boy know of destiny? If a fish lives its whole life in this river, does he know the river's destiny? No! Only that it runs on and on out of his control! He may follow where it flows, but he cannot see the end.

He cannot imagine the ocean.

Ookay, but it's the Avatar's duty to master all of the bending disciplines.

To master the bending disciplines, you must first master discipline itself.

But you have no interest in this, so I have no interest in you! Now, get out.

Please, I have to learn.

This could be my only chance.

Are you deaf! How can I teach you if you refuse to listen? Before learning firebending you must learn water and earth.

Water is cool and soothing, earth is steady and stable, but fire, fire is alive! It breathes, it grows, without a bender, a rock will not throw itself! But fire will spread and destroy everything in its path if one does not have the will to control it! That is its destiny! You are not ready! You are too weak! You think I am weak? Avatar Roku! No! No! I did not mean that! I have mastered the elements a thousand times in a thousand lifetimes.

Now, I must do it once again.

You will teach the Avatar firebending.

Yes, yes, I will teach you.

Really? That's great! Widen your stance.

Wider! Bend your knees.

Now, concentrate.

Good, good! Wait! What do I do now? Silence! Talking is not concentrating! Look at your friend, is she talking? Even that oaf knows to concentrate on what he's doing! Hey! But what am I concentrating on? Feel the heat of the sun.

It is the greatest source of fire.

Yet, it is in complete balance with nature! So when do I get to make some fire? Concentrate! Are we coming up here so I don't burn anything with my fire blasts? No fire yet.

What? Power in firebending comes from the breath.

That is why you must master proper breath control.

You brought me up here to breathe? Assume your stance.

Wider.

You're not even look Wider! Now, inhale through the nose and exhale through the mouth without talking.

Good.

Keep going.

What are you doing here!? I did not tell you to stop! I've been breathing for hours.

You want to stop breathing? I want you to stop wasting my time! I already know how to squat and breathe and feel the sun.

I want to know how to shoot fire out of my fingertips! I had a pupil once who had no interest in learning discipline.

He was only concerned with the power of fire how he could use it to destroy his opponents and wipe out the obstacles in his path, but fire is a horrible burden to bear.

Its nature is to consume and without control it destroys everything around it.

Learn restraint, or risk destroying yourself and everything you love.

I thought about what you said.


I promise I'll be more patient.

We're going to work with fire now.

Oh yeh! I mean, let us begin.

Concentrate on the fire.

I want you to keep this flame from reaching the edges of the leaf for as long as you can.

Master! There is trouble.

What's going on? Concentrate on your leaf.

This is the worst firebending instruction ever.

All he does is leave me alone for hours to concentrate or breathe.

I'm sure there's a good reason.

But I'm ready to do so much more.

I did it! I made fire! Aang, that's great, but you should take it slow.

Careful! Now that's firebending! Aang, you'll hurt yourself! Wonder how that juggler did it? Katara! I'm so sorry! Katara, what's wrong!? What did you do? Iiiit was an accident! I was Katara, I'm so I told you we shouldn't mess around with this! Look what you did! You burned my sister! You burned my sister! This is all your fault! I know.

Now pack your things.

You must leave immediately.

I'm sorry, I didn't I'm sorry! You have healing abilities.

The great benders of the water tribe sometimes have this ability.

I've always wished I were blessed like you free from this burning curse.

But you're a great master.

You have powers I'll never know.

Water brings healing and life.

But fire brings only destruction and pain.

It forces those of us burdened with its care to walk a razor's edge between humanity and savagery.

Eventually, we are torn apart.

Go get your friends and flee! Do not come back here or you will all be destroyed.

Hurry! Don't worry, men.

My old teacher gave up fighting a long time ago.

Master Jeong Jeong.

Katara! Are you all right? I'm fine, we've got to get out of here.

Where's Aang? Jeong Jeong tried to tell me that I wasn't ready.

I wouldn't listen.

I'm never going to firebend again.

You'll have to eventually.

No, never again.

It's okay, Aang.

I'm healed.

What? How? I'll explain later.

But right now, we have to get out here.

Zhao and his soldiers are attacking! Where? By the river.

They captured Jeong Jeong.

I have to help him! Look at you.

You were once so great.

I can't believe my former master has become nothing more than a simple savage.

It is you who have embraced savagery, Zhao.

It's Admiral Zhao, now.

That title will not help you against the Avatar.

Do not try to fight him! You are no match! I think I can handle a child.

I have never seen such raw power.

Jeong Jeong! We'll see.

Men! Take the deserter! It's a trick! He's run off into the woods.

Find him! Let's find out what my old master has taught you.

You were Jeong Jeong's student? Until I got bored.

I see he taught you how to duck and run like a coward.

But I doubt he showed you what a firebender is truly capable of! Whoa! Wild shot! I'll show you wild! No self control Stand and fight, Avatar! Oh, were we fighting? I thought you were just getting warmed up.

I was! Is that all you got? Man, they'll make anyone an admiral these days! Ahoy! I'm Admiral Zhao! I don't know why, but I thought you'd be better than Zuko.

Sloppy.

Very sloppy.

No wonder to run now, you little smart mouth! You've lost this battle.

Are you crazy? You haven't thrown a single blow! No, but you have.

Jeong Jeong said you had no restraint.

Have a nice walk home! Aang, come on! Let's go! Wait! Where's Jeong Jeong? He disappeared.

They all did.

Hey, where did everybody go? Very funny guys! Aang, you're burned.

Let me help you.

Wow! That's good water.

When did you learn how to do that? I guess I always knew.

Oh well then thanks for all the first aid over the years.

Like when I fell into the grease briar bramble and that time I had two fish hooks in my thumb! Two? He tried to get the first fish hook out with another fish hook.

Oh, and the time that big snake bit me! Thanks for healing that up.

That was great.

Really helpful.