The hundred year war being wagged by the Fire Nation against the entire world that the started with Sozin's Comet and the genocide of the air nomads ended when the last remaining air nomad Aang (the avatar and the very person Sozin committed the genocide of entire race to try and kill) defeated his grandson Ozai by stripping him of his firebending through the usage of engerybending. Was Aang being frozen for hundred years was good thing or a bad thing in the long run as no one could really say at the moment. If Aang had not run away and did not frozen in ice for hundred years there was no telling that he would even have a chance to master the elements in time stop Sozin as he was capable of defeating Roku (the previous incarnation of the avatar) in battle thus what chance would Aang have stood against him. As he probably would not even mastered waterbending by the time Sozin's Comet had arrived. Also the genocide of the Air Nomad could be place completely on Aang's head as if Roku, his previous incarnation, had not been so soft on Sozin after learning of his plan to take over the world simply because they had been best friends then Sozin would have never been able to commence on the nearly complete extinction of the Air Nomad. Though many more people would have died when Roku's home island was consumed in a volcanic eruption so massive that it could be see and feel for over a hundred miles.
Yet none of this really matter to one Toph Bei Fong at the moment. She knew of the past yet that was the past and thinking about what ifs would not do anything but cause you to endlessly worry about all the thing that could have happened if this had happened instead of this. The only thing she did know was that she did not know what to do now that the war was over and peace was finally begin to return to the world that almost been knocked completely out balance with Twinkletoes (Toph's nickname for Aang) as the last Airbender and herself as the last Earthbender as Zuko's crazy father wanted follow through on plan of equally crazy younger sister had come up with. That being to burn the Earth Kingdom to ash thus repeating what Sozin did a hundred years ago (when he wipe out every Air Nomad but the one he wanted) to wipe out all Earthbenders.
The problem that Toph had was that she now felt out of place among her friends almost as if she was the third wheel. Twinkletoes and Sugar Queen (one of her nickname for Katara) , Sokka and Suki, Zuko and Mai hell there was even Momo and Appa. Everyone within their group had someone but her as she was pretty much on the outside these pairings that form within their group looking in.
Sure when the war was going on it did not bother her as they were more worry about fighting the Fire Nation and other things, however that things were different and she could all be see how out place she felt amongst her friends. They were all going in different directions that she could or did not want to follow. Zuko and Mai were now the leader of the Fire Nation with Zuko as the Fire Lord and Mai taking on some roles usually done by the Fire Lady. Twinkles and Sweetness (another of her nickname for Katara) would be traveling around the world where they work at keeping the peace they fought so hard for. At first this seem right up her alley yet the biggest problem was her two friends were all lovely dovey now that it made her wonder why Sugar Queen waited so long and seem to string along so many guys when she had loved Twinkletoes all long. Then finally there was Soka and Suki who at first were going back to Kyoshi Island along with the other Kyoshi Warriors and Ty Lee (the newest Kyoshi Warriors) however he managed to convince Suki to come back with him to the South Pole. Toph had no desire to head to freeze climate where she could not 'see' as she was sure that the snow covering the ground would hinder her seismic sense which she needed to use in order to 'see' despite her blindness. Something that required which required her bare feet to touch the ground or metal ever since she invented metalbending and got good at it. Even if the snow did not hinder her ability to use seismic sense then the danger of her feet getting frostbitten if walked around barefoot all the time would.
Then there was the very last option opened to her and that being she could simply go home. Something that seem very simply yet at the same time very difficult for Toph. It was true that she missed her parents but at the same time she was worried that if she went back home then they would try to hide her away from the world again, which was now impossible as she was the Earthbending master for the avatar and a national hero having played a big role in stopping the Fire Nation from burning her homeland to ash. Then there was them trying to exploit her for what she had done simply to advance the Bei Fong family status in society. Normally Toph would be pushing Aang to be rock-like and face his problems head on yet when it came to her parents it was time where she could benefit from her own advice and just face her parents again for better or worse just to get over with.
Toph sighed as she going to doing it she was going to face her parents yet first she had to get back to Gaoling from the Earth Kingdom Capital of Ba Sing Se. Twinkletoes offered her a ride but she refused as her parents did think he kidnapped her despite the fact that she simply ran away and told them that in letter she had Sugar Queen write for her. Though she never got a reply so she does not know if her parents ever got the letter.
Few days later…
"I should have taken Twinkletoes up on his offer" Toph said groaning as she plopped down on stump located in the swamp that she had somehow wondered into on her way home. Leaving Ba Sing Se in the opposite direction from which she and the rest of her friends came to the city for the first time thinking it would be shortcut after running into The Boulder yet again and taking his advice about the shortcut home.
Though something The Boulder overlooked was that use the shortcut Toph needed to be able to actually see with her eyes as their were a number of signs which she would have to follow otherwise she would end up lost like she was now. It was not all that hard really for someone to forget that Toph was in fact blind for as long as she was on some kind of earth or metal she could 'see' better then someone with perfect 20/20 vision in both eyes. This was something that happened to Sokka quite a few time as completely forget about Toph's blindness the most recent being at to long ago she when commented on how good a picture he drew of the entire gang was while they partying at the Jasmine Dragon (Iroh's Teashop).
Yet as Toph jumped off the stump she knew that she could not go back the way she came as she could barely 'see' in this swamp as her feet just barely touch the ground but it similar when she first had walk on sand. Everything was all fuzzy yet it much better then the other path that she passed where she could not sense anything at all for some reason thus it was probably be better if she just kept going on this path as at least she was not totally blind here. Fuzzy 'sight' was better then no 'sight' after all.
Ten minutes later, the world's only metalbender was still stuck inside of the swamp yet something perked her interest as realized that she was not alone in the swamp as there was another person in here with in. Having to focus a little more then usually she recognized who this person was or at least who she thought they were. They were light footstep that she only knew one person in the world to have and that being Aang yet there was something different about them, something that she just could not place for some reason.
Before she even knew it she was walking in the direction of the footsteps and apparently in deep part of the swamp in which once she entered Toph disappeared underneath the water as there was no ground for her to walk on. Never having learned to swim Toph was sinking like stone and completely unaware of what going on around beyond sound of her struggle to return to the surface. Unsuccessful in her attempt as she may be the world greatest earthbender that meant nothing now that she surrounded by water as there earth for her to bend just murky water and plant life. In her current predicament she was nothing more then blind girl drowning after taking one wrong step in swamp. As Toph felt her consciousness fading as water fill her lung her outstretched hand begin to fall yet before it completely someone reach out grabbing it and pulling her back up to the surface. Teetering on the border of consciousness and unconsciousness and the fact that she was still in the water thus unable to tell who rescue her she passed out completely after choking up a large quantity of the water that she had swallowed.
"So this is where you were. Come on we have to get out here as this place gives me the cripes a somewhat" large seemly bald man in white marital arts gi.
"Hey Pop do not tell me you have notice I carrying a girl here" a black hair kid around Toph's age said as climb out the deep area of the swamp with Toph in tow.
"I noticed her but what were you doing in swimming in a swamp of all things with them?" he asked as it was not like him to not pay attention like that.
"I heard her laughing while dressed in more fancy clothes then these and went to see if she knew a way out this swamp since you vanished on me. I was getting closer when all of sudden the ground beneath me changed for ground from spongy soil to water that was pretty deep causing me to fell in. The next thing I know this girl now slightly under me. She was dressed very differently and drowning" the kid said shifting Toph on to his back .
'Great can not leave her here as I can not think a good reason to tell the boy and I really want to get out this swamp before they ('they' being the one scary them) shows up again' the boy's father thought thus told him to bring her along as he always dump her somewhere once they were outside this crazy swamp.