1. Falling Stars

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Back together at the Fire Kingdom Palace, Aang, Katara, Sokka, Toph, and Zuko sat together on the roof, watching the stars twinkling in the sky.

"This is amazing, I never thought I'd be able to relax like this," Zuko smiled, the others nodded in agreement while Toph shook her head.

"It would be a lot better if I could see anything!" she exclaimed.

"Put your feet to the sky, that might work," Sokka joked, earning a punch in the arm from Toph.

"Hey look!" Aang pointed at the sky, Katara's gaze followed his finger as shooting stats cascaded over the black of night.

"It's beautiful," Katara smiled, nuzzling into Aang.

"Ugh, warn me before you're gonna do that!" Sokka said, dramatically falling into Zuko and shielding his eyes.

"Hey! Get off me!" Zuko yelled, swatting at Sokka. The two began tussling until they felt the palace shake, followed by a string of screams.

The group urgently got to their feet and rushed outside the palace, and what they saw was devastating. A meteorite has struck part the Fire Nation, destroying much of the land around it.

An injured civilian limped up to the group, "Please, help us."

Zuko turned to Toph, "Do you think you could get that meteor out of the ground?"

"Of course I can! Who do you think I am?" Toph smirked, raising her hands to slowly easy the giant rock out of the earth, moving it out of the way of the public area. In the concave ground, there was broken pieces of houses and shops scattered everything. Buildings in the surrounding area were blown back and mangled by the sheer force of the meteor.

"That doesn't look too good," Sokka whimpered.

As the group surveyed the area, they were approached by an elderly man.

"Fire Lord Zuko, you have to know, this isn't the first time this has happened," he started.

"W-what?"

"Unless you've noticed already, there's been an abundance of shooting stars. Those were meteorites, crashing to the earth. Most of them landed in the ocean, but it all seems to have started in the Earth Kingdom. I suggest you and your friends pay a visit to Ba Sing Se, I have a friend there, Gopan, who knows much more about all this," the man explained.

"Thank you, sir," Aang butted in, "we'll be sure to head there right away!"

"Oh thank you, Avatar."

With that, Aang, Toph and Katara headed back into the palace to get ready to leave. Sokka and Zuko stayed behind for a bit to gather a group of people to begin rebuilding the devastated area.

"Get as many earthbenders as you can, they'll be able to help more than anyone else!" Sokka instructed proudly.

***

As they readied for their journey, the mood turned solemn.

"I didn't think there'd be something else bad this soon. It's only been one year since the war ended," Katara sighed, the others simply nodded in agreement.

They went outside to the back of the palace where Appa was waiting for them. After piling their bags onto Appa's saddle, they mounted.

"Alright, Appa, yip yip!" Aang said happily, trying to keep the mood upbeat.

As they flew over the Earth Kingdom, they saw a big chunk of land in Si Wong Desert, destroyed. The destruction only got worse as they got closer to Ba Sing Se. Luckily, Ba Sing Se itself seemed to be in fairly good condition.

They landed on the outside of the city and walked in.

"So where are we even supposed to start looking for this guy?" Aang asked.

"Let's just ask someone," Sokka looked around until he noticed a middle aged man sitting alone. "Excuse me sir, but do you know where we could find Gopan?"

The man smiled sadly and nodded, "Yes, that's a bit of a sad story, he's my friend," he proceeded to give the group directions to Gopan's house.

When they arrived, a woman with long black hair answered the door. "Yes? How can I help you?"

"We're looking for someone named Gopan, is he here?" Aang asked, the woman nodded.

"He's my husband, and I'm Etka. What do you need him for?"

"We were told he knows about the meteorites that keep hitting the earth; the shooting stars," Zuko chimed in, that's when a man who looked older than he was, appeared at the doorway.

"I knew someone would eventually come asking me about this," he said. "I'm Gopan. Have you ever heard of Etherbending?"

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