Saturn Girl placed a hand on Chameleon boy's shoulder, pulling him back.
"Remember we can't move too close or be seen."
She whispered at him.
"I know. But I just wanted to see it for myself…before he changed it into his official team base."
Chameleon boy explained, still trying to peek at the Club Lux building.
Saturn Girl nodded in understanding before a flash of light behind them, made them look back at a suddenly flush Phantom Girl, hiding a small camera behind her.
"Sorry, I just wanted a picture…"
Saturn Girl sighed.
"You do both know that it's not even his official base right? Shh!! Someone's coming…let's get out of here. We still need to find out Lor-Zod's whereabouts. He might have gotten his hands on the Phantom Zone Projector already."
I rubbed Saisei's snout affectionately.
I told him and scratched his chin. Then I turned my attention back to the fight happening. Hakai was harassing Iroh with some quick and swift attacks. Her winding flight pattern was not allowing him to do much but she couldn't get closer either due to Iroh's not surprising battlefield intelligence. Ant Man gets huge and he's a blundering mess, Iroh gets huge and he's a fucking combat titan…so not fair.
I looked at Saisei who protectively hovered above me.
"I don't suppose you guys have a way we can take him down, right?" I asked jokingly. What I was not expecting was an answer.
Saisei answered and a second later, I understood what he meant as information poured into my mind. A smile spread out on my lips.
"If this actually works, I'm introducing you both to Grangos as a way to say thanks."
I said out loud. Saisei and his sister were proposing one all out attack. One final clash and winner takes all. I could do this.
"Let's go boy."
I patted the Dragon and stated, jumping on top of his back. Saisei exploded forth in motion, his flight speed was controlled and still fast enough to put my earlier efforts to shame. I pulled up closer to Iroh, standing up slightly as I brandished Equity in my right arm. Hakai kept harassing him but pulled back once I arrived on scene, level with the gargantuan man's face. I fully stood up on Saisei's back, Hakai flanking us to the right.
"Iroh! This fight has gone on for too long. I propose we finish this in one final move. One final attack to decide who the victor will be."
I declared. My hand firmly on Equity. I could feel Saisei's back muscles tensing. Whether out of fear or excitement, I had no idea. I delved into the links I had with the twins and reassured them. Sending them feelings of comfort. Instantly, I could feel both spirits calm down.
"I agree, young Avatar. Show me your full strength!"
Iroh's voice boomed out, sending a gust of wind that ruffled my clothes. After saying that, something seemed to change with him. His presence dimmed in my senses as a hum filled the air. I clenched my hand in preparation as although he felt weaker...the air on my skin rose up. Something was happening. Iroh's orange form started pulsing and his spiritual aura spread out from his body to cover the surroundings.
My eyes widened when I felt the area covered by his influence disappear from my realm master control. He was creating a domain! His energy suddenly exploded past the level he had shown before and I felt like an idiot for letting him power up. The spiritual domain seemed to increase his strength by magnitudes. Luckily I had a trump card up my sleeve as well, courtesy of my two new friends.
I jumped off Saisei and stood between him and his sister on a platform made up of fire.
'Its time. Are you ready?'
I told them and felt waves of confirmation come through the links.
'Let's do this then!'
For the first time ever, I didn't change Equity into a weapon that I needed. Instead, I delved through our connection and allowed it to change into the best form for bending Fire. The best form for channeling that thermal energy. The best form that would allow maximum efficiency. Equity glowed and lost it's Katana form, the handle grew longer as the blade shortened but became much broader at the head. Intricate cursive lines were drawn on it's length, adding more beauty to the final product.
A beautiful and strong lance/spear was the end result. It felt...light in my hands yet it's structure was incredibly dense in my senses. I gripped it tight and breathed out. One final move to end this...Iroh's domain seemed to steadily raise his energy and he now hand his hands placed on his hips, mouth open in a wordless scream as he powered up. I mentally connected with any dragons 100 miles in the vicinity and instructed them to leave. They complied, allowing me to prepare my own attack.
Saisei and Hakai were both an enigma. And even the plan to defeat Iroh that the twins had shown me, was something I had never seen before from canonical spirits. Spirits can embody concepts, that much is true but the only case of a spirit combining with a mortal to give that mortal access to the concept was in the case of The Avatar. Where Raava combined with Wan or Vaatu with Unalaq.
Saisei and Hakai were proposing the same thing. That we meld our spirits together, hopefully giving me access to their unique abilities. Saisei's powerful rejuvenating flames and Hakai's powerful destruction flames. Shocking? Yes I know. However, despite being a different flavor of an Avatar...my intuition told me, it wouldn't work.Which was honestly a real bummer. Up until now, I had no idea if I posessed Raava or a higher spirit of order or balance or if my Avatar State was essentially bearing all that weight. Iroh could no doubt help me understand more but for that to happen, I had to end this.
However...there was another way. Saisei and Hakai could not fuse with me but...they could temporalily do so with Equity. I held up the spear to the sky. My spiritual attunement showed me how Saisei and Hakai's energy started melding with the weapon. Both dragons flew up in a winding path, dancing in the air in a lovely pattern before plunging into the weapon. A blast of light exploded out of my form and I was left holding a lance glowing with power.
My body felt strengthened to its peak, no doubt an effect from Saisei and Equity was brimming with a purple energy that felt hungry and full of uncontrollable rage. Iroh and I stared at one another from the distance. Like gods about to clash over the fate of the mortal world. I was not going to lose this. We moved at the same time, a shout of effort coming out of my mouth at the exertion. At the power I was feeling.
Equity screamed through the air as I swung it. A huge pillar of destructive flames, seeking to only decimate poured out of the weapon. Iroh stepped forward and pushed his hands out. The action seemed heavy as he grunted. His own orange flames, much more even and penetrative but the same size as my own exploded out. Both flame attacks met in the air and space screeched.
I was going to win this! It wasn't a question of if! I thrust out Equity and felt Hakai's power double. My pillar of dark purple flames grew in intensity and my shirt smoked before falling away, turned to ash. I quickly covered my pants in a layer of Saisei's flame energy to shield them from the heat. Sweat dotted my forehead and skin while I looked on, grasping Equity in both hands.
Iroh took a step back as my attack started overwhelming his. I pushed some more, seeing my victory at hand. Below me, the ground started suffering. The rocks and stones begun melting and burning away, covering the whole area in smoke. Just a little more...just a little more. Iroh's domain seemed to blink out in instances before finally...it broke and I made the final push... drowning him in power. Yes!
I flew in to land the finishing blow when I felt an impact slam into my being without a warning. There was no pain except for a jarring motion. My vision suddenly turned white.
I blinked my eyes open and found myself standing in the middle of a gray space.
My voice echoed out strangely. I'd just been in a fight with Iroh. Where the fuck was I now? Is this a dream? Or was I just teleported? I pinched myself and felt a light pain. The sensation was there but muted. As if I was filtering the feeling through layers. So not a dream. At least not completely.
I called out. Nothing answered back. I shrugged and decided to walk around, searching for a way out. The first step I took, made something happen. Cracks appeared on the pristine gray floor running out across the whole area.
"You harm everything. You're not an Avatar."
A very familiar voice said from behind me. I looked back and came face to face with Aang. For a second we both said nothing...and then I smiled while cocking my head.
"Really? This is the best my sub conscious or whoever is responsible could come up with? A guilt trip?! Don't make me laugh. Frankly I am Insulted."
My voice rang out through the gray space.
I now understood what was happening. This was a spirit attack. Iroh's last move. That's the only thing that made sense. So to escape, the only thing I had to do was delve into my connection with Hakai and Saisei and use that link to wake up. The fact that I could pinch myself and perceive pain which was a body reaction showed me, I wasn't completely removed from my body as I thought I was.
"You are not a real..."
The Aang copy started out like a broken record.
"Avatar. Yes, I Know that and to be completely honest, I love it that way. Because if I was your normal kind of Avatar, I would be limited. Limited by your experiences... limited by the World's expectations and compared to my past lives. Who wants that kind of existence? I will use this power to carve out my own destiny, Aang. Just watch me."
I ranted, feeling my conviction grow stronger. I breathed out and stared back into the eyes of one of my childhood heroes. That wasn't all...
"I know you're not really here and that it probably wouldn't mean much even if you were to hear this, but I'll say it anyway... for what it's worth, I am sorry."
Somehow, I felt...lighter. I turned my back on him and mentally connected with Hakai and Saisei to go back to the real world.
The gray worked broke into pieces around me and I opened my eyes, finding myself lying on Hakai's back before Iroh.
I sat up, rubbing the small dragon's back. Saisei was back in his sister's shadow.
"You must love tea a lot."
I commented, referring to the table with a set of cups and a kettle pouring out steam between us. Iroh laughed.
"A guilty pleasure of mine, I'll concede."
"Mmmhhh." I hummed reaching out for a cup. "May I?"
I asked with a smile. Iroh nodded back with a matching one on his face.
I brought the cup before my nose and breathed it in. The aroma calmed me down. I took a sip and sighed out in contentment. My body instantly felt a relaxation seep through my muscles and bones.
I stated, looking up at Iroh.
"Yes. Yes I believe I did."
I raised an eyebrow. This shameless old man. Iroh looked at my expression and laughed, his belly jiggling. I couldn't help it, I also started chuckling. I might have lost the fight but something told me, I'd won something more valuable.