This is part 3 of my fan-fic about Azula's return and her redemption. If you have not read part 1 (Mother's Love) or part 2 (Siblings Reunited), I suggest you do before reading this one. And I hope you will enjoy all three of them.
Can a person's ruined life change into something better within a few days, just because of some people that really care about you? There are some special cases when it actually can. Princess Azula of the Fire Nation is one of them.
Once she thought that she was better of dead. Now, after her mother had opened her eyes to the truth and her brother has decided to put away their differences, her life is getting better by each second.
She no longer needed force herself to win, nor feel that no one could be trusted. And she didn't need to fear love anymore.
Not now that the War is over, when a period of peace is upon them.
And when her father is locked away and can no longer treat her like a callous conqueror.
It's been just a week since Azula got home. And only three days after her release she has already changed in one particular way. Not by any emotional matter, but by her appearance: Her mother has given her a haircut.
It was hard to think they'd ever had such a hard relationship earlier, within only a few days of honesty and love from her mother's side, Azula was getting ready for restarting her life.
And having Azula's hair cut was just another one of many quality-times together.
- "By the way mom, where were you earlier this morning?"
- "I went to see your father in prison, and when I told him about you..." She looked a bit worried. "I've never seen him that angry before. He said I've ruined everything he'd done for you all your life. He even said he demanded to see you. So that he can talk to you. But I told him that I wouldn't even let you get close to him until he has accepted that the war is lost."
- "No, mom, I want to see him. There's something I need to talk to him about."
- "What? Azula, I don't want you to come near that man for a very long time. He made me lose you once, I won't let it happen again."
- "Don't worry, I'm not going to let him talk me into something stupid."
Ursa considered it for a moment, and then gave her answer:
- "Well, then I'm coming with you."
- "You heard me, I'm coming with you. If he tries something with you this time -" At this she whammed her fist in the air with a slight smile on her face, "- I'll give him a punch he'll never forget."
Azula was not amused, and raised an eyebrow.
- "Mom... don't speak to me like I'm a five year old."
Ursa momentarily lost her ability to speak. Azula was right of course, Ursa shouldn't treat her like she just did. But still, she'd swore to protect her daughter from now on. It wasn't only out of guilt, but also an agreement she had made with Zuko after he gave her the position as leader of the Dai Li. Azula would keep an eye on them, while Ursa kept her eyes on Azula.
- "You're right, Azula, I guess I forgot that I've missed a few years with you. I'm sorry. But I can't let him try to use this opportunity and..._"
- "Mom, three days ago you came to me and gave me a chance that I thought was impossible to get, and all you asked in return was for me to trust you. Now I'm asking you for the same thing. Please, just let me do this alone, I promise I wont let you down."
After a short while Ursa had faced the fact that Azula was right once again: not trusting her now would just be unfair. And not letting her make these kinds of decisions would not help her one bit. So she nodded and smiled.
- "Very well, I'll let you do this on you own."
Azula smiled back.
- "Thank you, mom."
It would take some time before she broke the silence between them. "By the way, why did you went to see him?"
- "I wanted to give him the same chance as you. I tried to talk reason to him. But he simply refused to listen. He feels no regret for what he's done at all. And he seems to think that he's still the true ruler over the Fire Nation. I can't relate to him anymore, it's like I'd never known him. Like I'd never loved him."
- "You know, sometimes I wonder how you could ever love him anyway. The only thing you two seem to have in common is that you're married at the same day..."
Ursa laughed a tiny bit while at the same time looked a little sad.
- "I know, and even if we did meet because it was decided, once I actually truly loved him. We were still young, about twenty-five years old. Whenever we were alone, he was the most passionate man I'd ever met; it was impossible to resist him. However, after we had got married, he started to act like a whole other person. It was then I saw his true colours, whatever he did, it seem to only be to please your grandfather Azulon. I don't know if he had always been like that, or if he was just another victim. I still want to believe it's the latter. When I tried to help him forget about his father he refused to listen to me, he just shut me out."
- "Do you still love him?" Even Azula wasn't sure if it was an actual question or some sort of accusation.
But Ursa's answer was still honest:
- "Yes. I do". Her face once again showed her internal sadness and guilt. "That's why I went to see him. I know all the things he has done, but... I still remember the man I married. The man who once said he couldn't wait to become a father. Then, when I was waiting Zuko, he had already became the man the world knows. I thought that maybe our marriage could be saved. But he didn't care one bit about his family anymore, and I still can't understand why. So I had to raise Zuko on my own. Then when you was born, after the way I had raised Zuko, he had decided to make you his prodigy-child, his weapon... and not even let me get near you..."
Ursa stopped talking and closed her eyes.
Azula knew that she still blamed herself for letting Ozai raise their daughter like this, but after everything Ursa had done for her recently, she could not stand seeing her mother like this.
She placed her hand on Ursa's and waited for her to open her eyes again. Even if Azula didn't say anything, her message was clear enough in her eyes: I don't blame you".
And then she let her mother keep working like nothing had happened.
They didn't say anything more until Ursa was finally done cutting Azula's hair.
She looked for uneven hair straws or anything else that had to be fixed. Realising there were none, she laid the scissor down. To her, it was not so bad, but what about Azula...?
- "There, it's done. What do you think?"
Azula raises the small mirror on the table.
When she saw her new look, she sure did not look happy, but not angry either. True, it was a very good work, but she didn't feel like herself. Instead of that long hair she was used to, her hair reached down just to her shoulder blades. And then it was her fringe: it actually reminded of Mai's hair a little bit.
And without knowing how, Ursa has actually managed to save a little bit of Azula's traditional strands on each side of her face.
It was a nice job, but Azula was still sceptical by this new look.
- "Well... this is something different, that's for sure."
- "You don't like it?"
- "Yes, it's good. But still, look at me. This is not my style. Did you have to make it this short? I look like a doll!"
- "It was the only possible hair style I could come up with. Just give it a few months, and you will have your old hairstyle back. Besides, you look really cute, Azula."
Azula looked at her with a threatening face-expression.
- "I hate dolls, mom!"
But that was four days ago now, and she has learned to live with this new hairstyle.
Once or twice she tried to put it in her regular hair knot, but it simply wouldnt work: no matter what she did it just ended up in a ponytail.
So she now had connected her hair in a ribbon down by her neck instead.
Her beauty was not ruined of course, but as soon as her hair has grown back at it's usual length, she would never cut it again.
Even if she was a little bit angry with her mother at first, she had put it behind her now. Making someone's hair a little shorter is not something you can be angry at for to long. Especially when your mother had done so much good things for you lately. Besides, there are worse things to worry about.
Like her meeting with her father that will be within a few hours.
Or just right now, when she is about to have her first speech with the Dai Li ever since she banished them from the Fire Nation.
They're all waiting for her in a underground chamber about the same size as the throne room.
Azula is standing by the door, trying to calm down. To gain her confidence, she has put on her traditional armour again.
Sure, she knew what to say, but this would be the first time she would talk to a big crowd ever since the war ended.
Bah, what's the worst thing that can happen?
"Well, here goes nothing."
And then she entered the chamber.
She has been talking with them for almost half an hour now, trying to be calm and forget about last time she saw them, when she banished them. But it's not going well: Even if she's giving the same inspiring words in her speeches as always, they seem not to respect her anymore. Many of them look at her with grudge, others with arrogance. Some are even rolling their eyes at Azula's speech. But she knows better of course than letting herself get angr... what the...? Did... did that one just yawn?
"Okay", Azula thought. "That's it, if they won't listen to me when I'm trying to be nice, then it's time for the good old traditional ways: Lets get dangerous."
She walked down the stage and started walking among the agents real close. One of these is the group-leader, who can talk and make everyone listen, and if that guy listens to Azula, everyone else will. Now, who here is the boss character?
Too short... too tall... too fat...ugh, too sweaty... Wait, there he is. He's the group-leader, no doubt. Azula walked in front of him and stared him in the eyes. He looked back, but he didn't look afraid of her at all.
That's just unacceptable.
- "You know" she said calmly, almost friendly " if I didn't know better, I'd thought that you don't fear me anymore."
The agent started to look at Azula with a defiant gaze; he was not going to let her scare him. We'll see about that. She kept talking "Well, I can't deny that I'm not acting like i used to, right? But, do you think... that I should not be feared anymore?" She raised her hand and let a blue flame burn in her palm. She held it close to his cheek, not near enough to burn him, but enough to scare him and make him sweat. He was trembling heavily, Azula enjoyed seeing him like that. A quick look at the guy next to him told her that even he is getting scared. She looked back at her victim with an evil and (just for fun) almost psychotic glare.
"Because if you think that you should not fear me, you're very wrong. You should really fear me...a lot. So let me ask you: Are you afraid of me?"
The agent nodded hasty, still with his eyes facing Azula. But she was not done yet. She let her fire burn even more. "Excuse me, I caaaan't heeeaaar youuu."
- "Yes, what? Be a little more specific."
- "Yes, I am afraid of you." The flame started to burn stronger, Azula looked at him more cruelly now. She whispered that she wanted the rest of the agents to hear him. He was panicked now: "Yes, I am afraid of you!!"
Azula's work here was done.
She walked away from him and went back on stage, looking out at the group, and now they absolutely looked at her like they used to: terrified. She stared at them with a warning look on her face.
- "Listen very closely, all of you. You failed me once. I thought I had one of the finest units in the world, but you proved me wrong when you showed me how incompetent you really are. You should not be here because of that. I don't care how small your mistake was. If it was up to me, you would all been burned alive for retuning to the Fire Nation. But as it is, it's, sadly enough, not up to me. My brother took you back because he expects you to do your best. He trusts you, but that does not mean I do. But you should all be very careful with what you do, because if you make another mistake, no matter how small it is, I won't rest until I've made sure that every single one of you will be forced to swim back to the Earth Kingdom! So I expect you to do even better than your best. Understood!?
- "YES, YOUR HIGHNESS!!" came an immediate answer from every one of them.
- "Good. Now I want you to start spying on every important person in this country, and I expect a list full of information within forty-eight hours. Now, get out of my sight!" said Azula and watched them leaving the hall with haste, one by one.
When she was left alone she finally breathe out, thinking of their terrified faces. They used to simply respect her, but after this speech they will barely be able to stand up straight when she spoke.
Azula smiled for herself. She was very pleased with her work.
- "Hmm... still got it."
Right afterwards she headed for the sitting room to clear her head. Sure, it was really fun to scare those losers, but she had hoped it would not come to that. So now she really need to get calm.
As she approached the door, she soon heard Zuko and Mai talking about something.
Without a word, she entered the room and sat down on the couch and looked like she was about to fall asleep.
Both Zuko and Mai forgot about the many letters on the table and looked at the relaxed princess.
- "What's with you?"
She slowly woke from her drowse, rubbing her neck.
- "I just had my first meeting with the Dai Li. They weren't really happy to see me again, but they're out on their first mission right now."
- "So how did it go? Do you think they will listen to your orders?"
- "Oh yeah, they will most definitely do a fine job. They wouldn't dare anything else, I've made sure of that."
She did not need to say what she meant about that. Zuko was not pleased.
- "I thought you had stopped scarring people. I gave you this chance because I..."
- "Aww, calm down, Zuzu. You said you needed someone who knows how to talk with the Dai Li, and apparently the only way to make them listen is to scare them. At least for the moment. When they've learned to respect me again, I can start taking it a little bit easier with them."
- "Okay, fine, that's good. But... please. Stop. Calling. Me. Zuzu...!"
Azula smiled with arrogance.
- "Fine... Dumb-dumb."
If Azula could just forever memorize the moment that followed: the look on Zuko's face was hysterical. Like he has just swallowed a whole glass of salted lemon-juice or something. Mai on the other hand had to hold herself from start laughing.
Still, maybe Azula should be just a little friendly towards him for trusting her. "Thanks, by the way."
- "...For what?"
- "That night mom came to me in prison, the guard gave me a piece of stake instead of that porridge I had to eat three months in a row. He said it was from you, so thanks"
- "Oh, that. Yeah, I figured if we were suppose to trying to live together and get along, I might as well start at once, right? Besides, I guessed it tasted better than..."
- "Tasted better!? Do you have any idea how disgusting that porridge was!? I was about to barf! It was dry, clumpy, cold, sticky..."
- "C'mon, it can't possibly have been that bad., said Mai.
- "Without milk!!"
- "... Oh..."
Within a few seconds all three of them started laughing lightly.
- "Well" said Azula, still smiling, "what were you two talking about before I came, and what are those?" pointing at the papers.
- "I've sent some messages out to some people I think should be aware that you're out of prison, and now I've got some answers from a few of them."
- "So what are they saying?"
- "Well, first we have the Avatar Aang. In short words, he's saying that he's happy that I've put away our differences and gave you this chance, but he's sceptical that I gave it to you so early.
Katara, I guess you remember her -" (Azula looked really angry) "- has not written so much positive thoughts, she says it's up to me to decide who to trust or not, but if it was up to her, she would wait for a long time before she could trust you. But don't take it too personal: once you've hurt her feelings, it's not easy to earn her trust. Believe me, I know..."
A short pause.
"Moving on, her brother Sokka simply says I must be crazy. Toph, the blind earthbender, could not write on her own, so Aang writes in his letter she says that she doesnt really care. Our uncle writes that he's proud of me, for giving you this chance, and that he actually trusts you a little bit, because "even the one who walked in darkness for the longest of times, can be led into the right path if someone lights up the way"... you know what he means..."
- "Mhmm." Azula didn't want to hear more from that: Sure, it's nice that he have faith in her, but he's speeches about destiny, life and second chances are so... boring!
Besides, there's only one person she would like to hear from: "And what about Ty Lee?"
- "Well, she must have written this letter very fast, because it's very hard to read. However, we've found two possible messages, but one of them doesnt make any sense, because I dubt that she is "picking her nose while playing Pai Sho with the Midget Spirit"... so that only leaves this one: She's saying that she is happy to hear that you're okay. She has taken some days off from her training at Kyoshi Island, and that she's coming to see you. She will probably get here within a day or two. I still haven't figured the rest of the letter yet, but it looks good... Yes, what is it?"
Azula looked over her shoulder. A servant had just entered the room.
- "Excuse me, princess Azula, but your escort is here to take you to your father."
- "Right, meet me outside, I'll be there in a minute." She went up and walked towards the door. And then she was gone.
Even If Zuko did not liked the idea of letting Azula see their father this soon, he somehow had a feeling that he had nothing to worry about.
You could see on his face that he was looking forward to let her redeem herself.
Then he saw that Mai was looking at her boyfriend with a curious expression.
- "Nothing, it just that I can't understand that you and Azula suddenly get along so well, just like that." snapping her fingers.
- "Yeah, me neither. I guess in the simplest terms, Azula is like any other woman: I can't live with her, but I can't live without her either..."
Somehow, even after everything she had been told about her father lately, she could not help but wondering what he would think of her when he sees her.
But when she entered her father's prison cell, she realised she's not the only one who had changed look.
These last weeks had not been good for Ozai: He had lost weight and he was dirty all over. His beard had grown out extremely, just like his hair. There was nothing that indicated that this man once was the ruler of the Fire Nation, when he sat there on the other side of the bars, like any ordinary criminal in the world.
- "Hello, father."
Her father looked up with no new expression on his face. He just looked at her like he always does; like she was just someone he saw for the first time.
His voice had not changed either, except for the little fact that it sounded a bit disgusted considering his current circumstances.
- "Why did you want me to come here?"
- "I had to see it for myself. Your mother told me some things when she was here. That you have been released and that your mother thinks that you have... "changed"? She told me that even Zuko thinks it's true, that he even has given you control of his peace-unit. It seems like they really think that you really have changed." He looked disgusted by just the thought. "But I know better, you're just manipulating them as always, isn't that right?" He's changed his voice now from dark to soft and sarcastic. "Or maybe you have changed, and is planning to waste your life with drinking tea with your worthless brother and join the Avatar and his friends on their peace-crusade?"
- "Pfft! I'd eat them alive." said Azula with an insulted tone, she would never sink that low!
- "Hmm, I knew it. I knew that you would not betray your country. I knew you would return, that's why you're the true successor to lead this country. And now that you're back in the palace, it's time to..." But Azula told him to be quiet.
- "I'm not here to free you, or listen to any of your plans. And I am not planning a conspiracy to steal the crown. The only reason I really came here is because I need to hear something from you before I can put it behind me. Is it true, what my mother said? That you threatened to kill me when I was just six years old?"
Ozai was silent. He had not expected her to ask this, but it didn't really matter.
- "Yes, Azula, it's true. I told your mother that if she tried to raise you like she did with Zuko, I would personally save you from becoming another failed child of the Royal Family."
Azula had to stop herself from crying; she had done that to often these weeks. But still, after hearing this, that Ozai could not care less about her, that he would have no problem at all to kill her, it was hard to control herself. He didn't even have any remorse in his voice.
- "...Why? Everything I've done, all my life... was because I had to make you proud of me. I could never accept failure, because I was afraid you would not accept me, that you would treat me like you did Zuko. I honoured you with everything I did. Nothing I've done in this war was because of the glory of the Fire Nation, it was because I wanted to hear you say that you loved me. I thought I would never hear my mother say it, because she seemed to be afraid of me, so the only one I could ever hope to hear those few words from was you. And now this? Is there anyone in this world that you actually love, except yourself?"
- "Don't give me that. Love is worthless, pride and glory is everything someone will ever really need. You should be grateful for what I gave you. But just look at you now. Your mother has truly ruined everything for you."
- "No, she hasn't. I'm not misled or confused, father, not anymore. I'm happy. And now I intend to keep it that way, cause you should not expect me to get you out of here. You ruined my childhood, and if it hadn't been for my mother, my entire life would have been lost too. So don't try anything stupid now, and maybe I'll see you again some day. But for now, I want you to leave me alone and let me at least try to enjoy my last years before I reach age twenty. And just so you know: I really prefer my mother's love rather than your pride."
Now Ozai was getting really angry.
- "You're an idiot! You have everything I always wanted when I was at your age. Glory, power, fear... and your father's pride. Do you have any idea what it's like when you know how potential you are, but still everything you do seems to be worth nothing in your father's eyes!? It didn't matter what I did, my father always looked at me as if I was just some kind of failure. I was always over-shadowed by your uncle; he was the true prodigy in my father's eyes, even my mother's. I tried so hard to make my father proud of me. I spent no time with my mother, even if she tried to. I knew she would just slow me down. I studied historical happenings, war techniques, diplomatic, all for my father, but I always failed to make him satisfied. All he cared about was my worthless tea-drinking BROTHER!!
He stopped to catch his breath for a while. Azula was not affected by her father's story at all.
- "Maybe, but I'm not like you. Just because you never wanted to be loved by your parents, did you have to make me some kind of replica of yourself?"
- "Don't you see what I tried to do for you!? I had to make sure that you would not go through the same thing I did. Everything you did, I was proud of. You were not over-shadowed by your pathetic brother, just because you were second-born. I gave you everything. It was you who had everything. Don't you understand!?"
- "Yeah, I actually do," said Azula. "The real reason you raised me up like you did, even threatening my mother to kill me, was for your own winning, I have already realised that. But now I also know why you treated Zuko the way you did, even before you decided to train me: Because he was first-born. He reminded you of my uncle, didn't he? Just because Zuko was born first of us, you thought about how your brother was always number one in your parents eyes. And you hated Zuko for that. I also understand now why you were always so disgraced by Zuko: He reminded you of yourself when you were in his age, failing to please his father no matter what he did. Isn't that right?"
Ozai has never looked this angry before.
- "Impudent ungrateful worm!! How dare you talk to the true Fire lord like that!?"
But Azula was ever angrier than him now.
- "Excuse me!? Fire lord? You!? Okay, first: to be the Fire lord you must be a firebender of at least second grade, and you're not even a firebender anymore, from what I've heard. Secondly: You turned your status as Fire lord away and pronounced yourself as the so called "Phoenix King", even if that lasted for a very short time. So legally you don't have any royal status anymore, except maybe Fire lord's father. Me, on the other hand, because my Fire lord -coronation was never completed, I'm still a princess. So you, SHUT UP!!"
Suddenlly Ozai's eyes were barely visible anymore, and his mouth had almost shrinked to nothing. He looked at his daughter and said with a threatning tone:
- "I warn you, Azula, if you ever talk to me like that again, I swear I'll punish you in a way you can't even imagine. One day I'll get out of here, and then I intend to take back what was stolen from me. I will not give let your idiotic brother turn my empire into a pathetic nation of peace! And I know that even you want to go back to the glorifying days of..."
- "Back to what!? BACK TO WHAT!? Why can't you just get into that thick skull of yours that the war is OVER!? I will not waste this opportunity just because you hated your brother. Me and Zuko has really got a good start, and there's some... what's so funny?"
Ozai had started laughing.
- "What has happened to you? You always were so smart, and now you're acting even more stupid than you brother. You two have always hated each other. How many times have you not tried to kill him recently?"
He was right of course. Azula didn't show it, but she felt guilty inside.
Her defense was a weak one, but it was also true:
- "On whose authority? That was never something personal; I only did as I was told. It doesnt matter what you think, but when Zuko had returned home, I actually in a way enjoyed having him around. It was when he had betrayed us that I started to take it personal, and when Mai and Ty Lee betrayed me too, it was then I really wanted him dead by my own will. But not anymore. He has given me a chance to redeem myself, and no matter what you say, I'm going to..."
- "Don't play innocent with me!" Ozai was not looking angry anymore, he was furious. He didn't act like himself either; it was like he had gone mad. He breathed heavily and he started to look at her in a mocking way. He walked towards his daughter until the bars stopped him from coming any closer. "You know as much as I do that you will never be forgiven. Your hands are just as dirty as mine. Dirtier! After all: It was not my idea to burn down the entire Earth Kingdom to the ground, it was your idea. It doesnt matter what your mother says. No one loves you. I don't care what you think right now, but people don't change. Your brother was a traitor when he was a child, he is a traitor now. That goes for your uncle as well. And your mother never should have stand in my way, but she never gave up trying to "protect" her beloved children, like she always does. Then there's you, Azula, the most feared person in the entire world. If you should be called a "person". Go ahead, ask anyone in the entire world, you know what they will say; they would call you a monst..."
- "Shut up! I'm not a monster!" Azula could not stop the tears from breaking out. Within a few seconds both her cheeks were covered with a mixture of tears and make-up. Ozai seemed not to care a bit watching his daughter like that, he just kept smiling and taunting her.
- "You are a monster, and you will never be anything else. Just like me. Even if your mother thinks she can save you, you can never redeem yourself. You're better of without any love and sympathy. I know, I never needed my mother. And you should be thanking me for making you what you are..."
That was enough!
Without any warning, Azula reached for Ozai throat, burning it with her hand and squeezed as hard as she could. "Hngggg!" Ozai was gasping for air as Azula's grip got tighter, he didn't speak, but Azula could see in his eyes that he was begging for mercy.
But Azula seemed to have lost control over herself: her eyes was wide opened and red, her teeth visible and closely shut together. The tears and makeup made her eyes really scary, and she breathed heavily.
- "You" Azula almost whispered with a dark tone, "took my entire childhood away from me. You made me believe that my mother feared me, even hated me. You tried to make me some sort of killer that eradicates everything that stands in my way, or destroys everything I hate. Just to give you more power over the world. But if I really am a monster, like you say, then why don't I just kill you! Without feeling any pity for you at all."
Ozai was really scared now; it almost looked like he was about to cry. He deserves this, a voice in her head said. After everything he's done, this would only be true justice.
After all the things he got you to do. What he forced your mother to do.
- "But..." she said calmly but still with a raspy tone, and pulled him closer and stared him in his eyes, "I'm not."
And with that, she threw him away to land on his back on the cold stone-floor. Ozai touched his sore throat as he watched Azula standing there with a clear pride in her eyes, looking at her father with a little pity now when she had calmed down.
- "Good luck with your time in prison, Ozai," She said and turned around, heading for the door. "You're going to need it."
At those last words, the former Fire lord stared at his daughter with anger as she left the room.
After she closed the door, she barely made three steps untill she lost balance and had to lean against the wall and managed to contain herself from rejecting.
She counted to three and looked around, no one had seen her.
Azula took a deep breath, and then she headed back home.
It was already late when Azula got home to the Royal Palace.
When she came back she realised how much had changed: the servants was not afraid of her, they smiled at her when she walked by. Zuko welcomed her just like any other brother does. Mai simply said hi, she didn't seem to happy to see her, but in her case that's normal, so Azula didn't take that personal.
And then it was her mother. She had been waiting inside her room all day, worried about what might happen to Azula if her husband tried something.
The date of Azula's meeting with her father could not have been worse according to Ursa: first the Dai Li-meeting, which from what she had heard from Zuko already had made Azula lose her temper for a moment or two, and almost straight after that... this.
As soon as Azula entered, Ursa wrapped her arms around her.
- "So? How did it go?"
- "It could have gone better. I had hoped that maybe I could for once hear him say something else than his usual speeches about his greatness and power, but I was wrong. And then we suddenly had a... should I call it "family-therapy". But that idiot is ever more stubborn than I am. He really did his best to turn my back against this life."
Ursa started looking very worried.
- "What did he do?"
- "He finally got on my nerves. When he realised I would not listen to him, he did the biggest mistake in his life: he made me angry."
- "Azula, what... what did you do to him?"
- "I was going to kill him", she answered with a nonchalant voice. "Calm down, I didn't do it. He wasn't worth it. Every part of me said it would be right. But you know the problem with me: I always think things through. If I had killed him, I would have thrown away everything you've done for me lately. And somehow, I couldn't help feeling sorry for how... pathetic he has become. And then there's what you told me about him and my grandfather. I can't forgive him for what he's done to me, but there are a lot of people who feels the same way about me. At least now I proved to myself that I'm not like him."
Ursa could not feel more amazed or proud over her daughter right now.
The following was for Ursa a question that really didn't need answer, it was already obvious to her, but she still needed to hear it from her daughter.
- "So... are you going to be alright?"
Azula thought about how her life had changed from chaos to paradise in just a few weeks: After a whole life thinking that her mother feared her, she had found out that she always loved her and even saved her life from a certain death by her own father's hands. She and her brother had been rivals for as long as they could remember, and now they were just like any other siblings in the world. Almost...
She had believed that she would remain in a prison for mental health the rest of her life, for her crimes against the world, and now she is in charge of the Fire Nation's peace-unit. Within a couple of days, her best friend Ty Lee will come to see her again, like she already had forgotten what happened at The Boiling Rock. And a few hours ago she had a... closure with her father. Probably the last time she would ever see him, unless he can "change for the better", like she has. And if he would somehow escape, and try to take back the throne, she would be there. To stop him.
Things have really worked out perfectly these last few days, and she has a feeling that it will just keep getting better.
- "Yeah, mom," Azula answered. "I think I will."
After all, she was born lucky.