Chapter 3: Trouble
At twelve Bumi was taller and stronger than all of the other kids in his year at school. Taller than the fire-benders (his Mum blammed his AirBender heritage), and stronger than the earthbenders (thank-you Uncle Sokka). and thanks to all the agility he was fast too.
As a result the other kids didn't mess with him. The non-benders looked up to him. And the benders treated him with a mixture of respect and awe. well Kazuki treated him with contempt, but that was a long story . . .
However that did not stop him from messing with Tenzin.
At ten, Tenzin had yet to grow into his airbender height, was quiet (usualy) and while his air-bending was great, he tended to avoid conflict. this all made Tenzin an ideal target.
Kazuki was a fire bender, tall but not so much as Bumi. his gang consisted of Naotak,a waterbender and Huang an earthbender.
Everyone saw Kazuki as the leader, but Bumi knew from watching the group that Naotak was the one really in charge. It was Kazuki's mean streak and bossyness which led everyone to believe otherwise.
Bumi didnt even think the others knew they were being played. Although Huang was easy to fool.
"Hey Air-head!" Bumi sighed. Kazuki had been picking on Tenzin for a while. He signalled Kya. It was time to end this rubbish.
"Go away, Kazuki" Tenzin complained.
"Make me." Kazuki leaned in close to Tenzin.
Bumi and Kya let their shadow's fall over Kazuki. "You know he is our little brother." said Kya
"And." said Bumi, "That the only people allowed to annoy the cueball are us."
"Oh look we have the whole familey." Kazuki smirked. "A hippie, a nerd and," He tapped Bumi on the chest. "A failure."
By this stage the other students had formed a ring around the combatants.
"Well not the whole family," Said Lin, "You forgot me , the greatest earth bender of all time."
Bumi rolled his eyes. "Lin, thats your Mum, not you."
Lin ignored Bumi "And anyway, Ursa's not here, so it's obviously not the whole familey." Lin finished.
Kazuki face palmed. "That's not the point. The point is that he owes us his lunch money."
"Huh, that's funny. I dont recall any laws stating hat annyone owes you money." Replied Bumi cooley.
"It's a new one, he just passed it." said Naotak
"Look, Kazuki," Kya spat. "We dont give a damn what you have to say. He and no-one else are going to give you money."
Huang then did a very foolish thing, he grabbed the front of Tenzin's robes and used his bending to aim a rock at Tenzin's head. "Give him the money."
Now Kya was an older sister. And she had Katara gene's in her. She spun in a low sweep drawing water from the moist aid around her and used that to freez Huang to a tree.
Kazuki made to fire bend at Bumi who grabbed the shorter boy's wrist. "Nice try, but no." Bumi smirked as he traded a series of punches and kicks with the fire bender. Untill Kazuki firebent again. Bumi dodged the flame in the way that his Uncles had taught him last summer.
Annother thing he had learnt last summer was throwing knives from his Aunt Mai. He had also received a set of throwing knives when he had proven himself capable of useing the safely. And seeing as he technically wasn't banned from bringing them to school . . .
Kazuki found himself dangling from a branch pinned by the sleeves of his shirt. Bumi relaxed a little and surveyed the damage. Lin had earthbent Naotak to the ground while he was occupied.
This wasn't the first time Sokka had been called to the school concerning his neices and nephews behavior. Aang was often busy, Katara was in great demand as a master healer and Toph was Cheif of Police. Today it was he and Toph representing the kids.
"Councilman Sokka, Cheif Bei Fong." The Deptuty Principal, welcomed them. He was a non-bender who looked to be one of the 'My way or no way' types.
"Where's Principal Len Jian?" Asked Toph. All her previous dealings had been with Len Jian, a kindley old man with a clear passion for teaching. This new guy, the Deptuty, had no such devotion.
"Where are Kya, Bumi and Tenzins parents?" Countered the Principal.
"Aang is in the Fire Nation," Responded Sokka. "Katara is healing bloodbending victums."
"I am sorry. I cannot discuss these matters with you." The Deptuty said.
"But . . ."
"Len Jian has a very lax attitude towards school policy." He continued. "I have no such tolerance . . ."
"He is their Aunt, Lin's surrogate father and Bumi's Sifu." said Toph.
"That's right." Said Sokka. "Wait a minute Toph, I'm a guy!"
"Oops." Toph blinked. "Now deptuty." Toph made a show of squinting at his name plate. "Sokka what's his name?'\"
"Look deptuty Kwan, I hardly see what is wrong with them sticking up for Tenzin." Toph said.
"Thats not the problem. It's how they did it." Kwan starred at Sokka. "I assume you know what these are."
"The're throwing knives." Sokka shrugged.
"The're lethal weapons!" Exclaimed Kwan.
Sokka shrugged again. "Bumi has been trained in there safe and responsible use."
"These are inappropriate things to be brought to school!" Kwan was nearly yelling. "There banned!"
"Thecnically he's only not allowed to bring his boomerang.' Toph spoke up.
Kwan looked like his head was about to explode, while Toph held back peals of laughter. "Honestly I don't know why your worried, no-one was hurt."
"A boy was frozen, annother was bent into the ground and a third assulted with lethal weapons!" Kwan was very, very flustered by now. "It's unnaceptable!"
"What is unnaceptable is that you think a non-bender dosnt have the right to deffend himself properly against a bender!" Sokka exclaimed. "It's people like you - non-benders who act out the stereotype of beong weak - who cause half the problems in this city! You claim you are defenceless, that benders have the advantage! The onl advantage they have is the one peple like you give them by not even trying to even out the playing field, you dont see that bending is a tool like any other, a weapon as dangerous and lethal as those knives, yet are those boys who threatened my nephew being punished? Just like Bumi with those knives if that firebender boy had messed up he could have killed somone! sure Bumi could have handeled the situation better but I think the skill he showed was commendable, no somthing which should be hevily punnished." Sokka ended his speil as Toph slipped her hand into his. Once there had been a time when she herself had doubted Sokka as a non-bender, untill she had repetitivly shown himself to be not only equal but in somcases better at fighting than her.
Sokka looked into the face of the stunned deptuty pricipal. Kwan opened and closed his mouth a few times befor finding the words he wanted. "Councilman Sokka, that was impressive but does not chance the fact that Kya, Bumi and Lin must be punished. They will all recieve three saturday detentions." Kwan held up a hand to silece Sokka's protests. "I have spoken with the students who saw the incident, and they all agree that Kazuki's gang insighted the trouble. They each have reciebed sis saturday detentions. Als Bumi must agree not to bring anymore sharp deadly objects to school, despie his impressive marksmanship. You may go."
As they left Toph smiled. "It could have been worse."
"It could have been pro-bending season." Toph said. Sokka laughed. During pro-bendind season, Ursa stayed in Republic City and fought on the Badger-Moles team along side Kya and Lin.
"I can see the head lines now 'Fire Princess Destroys School In Defence of Littlr Cousin"." Sokka joked as the kid's came into veiw.
"Are we in trouble?" Asked Kya when she saw her Uncle.
"Not with us sweetie." toph hugged Kya and Lin.
"Bumi I am so proud of how you handled yourself." Sokka gave his nephew a pat on the back. "But we're going to have to finf a way around you new weapons rules."
"I'm not allowed them anymore, am I?" asked Bumi.
"Thecnically You wen't allowed them before." Sokka replied. "But im going to make some calls. I've always wanted to learn Chi Blocking and im sure Ty Lee would love to visit."
Toph turned serious. "Maybey we should visit Kyoshis Island. You need to go back."
(A/N: sorry its so late. thankyou to my reveiwers for reveiwing. I'm currently working on a sorta christmassyish one shot set a few years after this that will be compliant with the rest of this story, but be published sprately.
thanks for reading, please reveiw!
It makes sense in context.)
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