❯ Aftershock – A Man With a Plan ( Chapter 1 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]

“I guess you don’t know people as well as you think you do. You miscalculated. I love Zuko, more than I fear you.”

“No, you miscalculated! You should’ve feared me more! You’re both fools!“

“What shall we do with them princess?”

“Put them somewhere I’ll never have to see their faces again, and let them rot!”

Ever since then, I was cursed with the burden of two new cellmates, Mai and Ty Lee. Ty Lee is a tad annoying to me, she’s just way to happy to be in this hell. Mai is okay, doesn’t talk much unless spoken to, and barely even talks then. So it’s pretty much just me, Jay, all by myself in this crowded little cage.

I’ve been in here for what… two years now? I think… but anyway, I don’t really see myself as a criminal, more like a savior. For some odd reason, the fire nation took the fact that I defended my home as an insult, so I am now stuck in here. Oh well, maybe someday I’ll–

“Hello? Earth to Jay!” said a cheery voice right in front of my face. I opened my eyes to see the pale and dimwitted grin of Ty Lee, the pink bunny as I like to call her.

“What?” I responded with an agitated tone.

“Do you want lunch or what?”
I got out of my dusty bed, one without sheets and a pillow, and followed Ty Lee and Mai out the door. The cafeteria was small, very crowded, and everyone stole your food. Not very mannerly, but hey, it’s the home of the most notorious criminals, what do you expect? I walked up to the line where Ty Lee was impatiently awaiting her 2nd meal of the day, lunch. Mai didn’t care, she sort of just stood there with her hands inside of her long red prison uniform.

“I wonder what were having today! Maybe sloppy joes! Wait, no… we had those yesterday… do they serve lunch twice in a row? I don’t know, I should ask the warden sometime, but he’ll probably just yell at me like the time he did when–”

“Does she ever shut up?” I whispered to Mai under my breath.
“Never.”

Finally. After a long wait, we get our long deserved meal. Bleh, whale blubber. It’s not the taste I don’t like, it just seems that ever since I came here, all I’ve done is gained weight. I think it’s that whale blubber. Lucky for me, I managed to grab the last fish crescent and a bowl of beans. This will tide me over until dinner hopefully.

Third table form the back, always. This is where all of the good people were, the ones that didn’t steal your food anyway. I took a seat as far away from Ty Lee as I could, for I have seen the way she acts at lunch; stuffing her face full of food, spitting it back out like a catapult as she talks. Luckily there was an open seat next to Crush, the bandit. Oddly, this bandit didn’t steal my food.

About halfway through my bowl of beans, Ty Lee somehow managed to hop across the table and sit next to me on the floor. Hooray for me.

“How did you get here anyway? I mean, we’ve lived in the same cell for almost a week now, shouldn’t we know something about you?” Ty Lee preached to me. I gave her a ‘go away I hate you’ glare, but she obviously didn’t take the hint. I’m guessing this because by now she was sniffing my food asking me the same question over and over. It seemed the only way to get her off my back is to answer her.

“Well… I was in the Elite Four awhile back; a group of highly trained weaponry artists who specialized in sneak attacks and assaults. As their leader, it was my duty to train the members and carry out our missions. When our town came under attack by a raid of fire nation ships, the Elite Four wasn’t prepared to defend the town single handedly. There were a few other soldiers, and a few water benders alongside us, but we were no match for the fire navy. As our forces dwindled, I surrendered to them completely. Why would I risk my life knowing I can only, if lucky, take out a mere three soldiers at the most with my spiked whip. After they apprehended me, they took me here, to the Boiling Rock. I still don’t know what happened to the rest of the Elite Four though… I’m guessing they were killed…”

“Aww poor thing! Don’t be so negative! I bet their alive out there somewhere!”

“What does it matter anyway? I’m in this prison for life, according to the warden. Even if they were right outside these walls, there’s no way I’d ever see them again.” And that was true. I would never leave the prison even if my life depended on it. If I managed to make it outside the prison, there’d still be the boiling water moat blocking my path to freedom. Under no circumstances would I ever try to escape.

“Well we can get you out!” Ty Lee insisted with glee.

“No. There’s no possible way. And don’t say ‘the gondolas’ because I already know they go across the water to the outside. But despite that, there are mass forces of fir navy soldiers around every corner, not to mention the prisoners squealing on us to get an extra shower token.”

“He’s right Ty Lee, there’s no way in or out of this place unless you’re a soldier.” Mai said from across the table. I bought some time for us three to talk alone by asking Crush to take my trash for me.

“Well that’s it! All we have to do is dress up like the soldiers and come and go as we please!” Ty Lee yelled. Even though she’s so young, it should till be obvious to keep your voice down during a secret escape chat. That plan was never going to work anyway. I could easily get the uniform around my shoulder length hair, but the blackness of it would show through for sure, but to mention my blue eyes. As for Ty Lee and Mai, I don’t know how they’d hide they’re hair at all.

“We have no access to the uniforms anyway Ty Lee.” Mai was right, how would we get three fitting uniforms from this place? I have no weapons, nor does Mai… but Ty Lee does have her hands still. But the racket we would cause… no, it’s out of the question, I will /not/ escape like that.

“No, it would be to much chaos to get the uniforms. Ty Lee, can you tightrope walk?” Ty Lee nodded, “Great, well I know for sure that when new prisoners arrive, they come her on a warship down by the harbor. If Ty Lee can run across the gondola’s long enough to get to the warship, she can take out the few captains of the ship. Then me and Mai will make a ruckus somewhere, start a fight or something, drawing attention away from the gondola’s. Once at the platforms, me and Mai will ride the gondola’s back across the lake, and then run down to the warship, and fly out of here.” I knew in the back of my mind, it was way to far fetched, it would never work.

“I’m in! You’re so smart!” Ty Lee acknowledged me. I hate when she does that. She agreed with the plan though, which was odd. “I don’t know if I can tightrope long enough to reach the end though. I did it once before Azula imprisoned us, but it wasn’t to far.”

“Well, just give it your best shot.” What was I saying? Her best shot won’t cut it. It has to be her most precise and accurate shot ever, flawless. “Now Mai, what do you think of the plan?”

“I know we’ll all die in the end of this, but why not, it beats staying in this stinky old coop.” Good spirit Mai! I don’t get it… I understand Mai’s depression for this place, but why does Ty Lee always have that big grin under her nose? It’s kind of scary actually. “Okay, so we all clear on the plan? Tomorrow night, we’ll break out of the Boiling Rock…”