It was a few hours past midday in Ba Sing Se and Avatar Aang was visiting the giant Earth Kingdom metropolis with his three young adolescent children in tow. At the present moment, Aang was looking forward to taking Tenzin, Kaddo and Vameira to the palace to have an early supper with Earth King Kuei and some of his other friends from the Hundred Years War.
“It seems like this place never changes,” said Tenzin aloud, balancing his glider horizontally on the back of his neck.
“I think the Middle Ring is my favorite,” said Vameira.
“Meh, it’s a city,” Kaddo chimed in. “You’ve seen one big city, you’ve seen them all.”
“I don’t think so,” said Aang, looking left-to-right at the diverse crowd of people and the wide variety of shops. “I didn’t like the thought of this place when I was growing up, since it was against what the monks taught us. But now that I’ve come here time and again, I can say that there are parts of Ba Sing Se that are worth appreciating.”
“Yeah,” said Vameira energetically. “I want to spend the rest of the afternoon at the Fancy Lady Day Spa. Then I want to go check out the 5-7-5 society. I hear that Uncle Sokka had an interesting story with them once.”
Kaddo scoffed. “That all sounds pretty lame. Personally, I’d like to venture outside the Inner Wall and see the battlefield where the siege was all those years ago.”
“That would be cool,” agreed Tenzin.
Kaddo nodded. “And now that we’re here, we can’t leave this place without going to Lake Laogai at least once.”
“It’s just a lake,” said Vameira skeptically. “It’s nothing but a bunch of water in the ground.”
“I’m talking about what’s underneath it, stupid!” Kaddo snapped at her. “Don’t you know anything? Our parents had adventures below Lake Laogai fighting the Dai Li. I wanna see the cells where they kept their prisoners!”
“Your mother would kill me if she found out I took you down there,” said Aang, waving his finger. “Besides, we’re short on time. We don’t have time for all that playing around and sight-seeing on this trip. We just have time to go to the Jasmine Dragon for some tea this afternoon. Then we’ll go straight to see Kuei.”
“Actually, there is somewhere I plan on hitting up while we’re here,” Tenzin announced over Kaddo and Vameira’s disappointed looks. “I won’t take no for an answer, either. You guys can go on ahead to the Jasmine Dragon and I can meet up with you at the palace later.”
“I’m serious, Tenzin,” said Aang, annoyed. “What could be so important for you to have to make a detour at a time like this?”
“Well, it’s about The Legend of Ong,” said Tenzin, upbeat.
Tenzin’s father sighed. “Oh great, not that again…”
Tenzin continued as though uninterrupted. “Recently, they opened a whole building dedicated to the series here in Ba Sing Se. They call it – the Legend of Ong Global Infodex. The Legend of Ong fans from all over the world go there.”
“The Legend of Ong Global Infodex?” asked Kaddo. “What in the name of the Moon Spirit is that?!”
“It’s a massive encyclopedia on The Legend of Ong that anyone can edit,” explained Tenzin. “They have thousands of articles – on each chapter, character, organization and so much more.”
“It sounds sort of neat,” admitted Vameira. “I’d like to come along, if you don’t mind.”
“They wouldn’t allow you in,” sneered Tenzin. “You have to be at least thirteen to go to the Infodex.”
“Since when?” asked Vameira in annoyance.
“Since it’s the rules,” Tenzin told her. “There’re a lot of rules that need to be followed when you go there. That’s one of them!”
“Hmph!” said Vameira, crossing her arms.
“What’s that?” asked Kaddo in surprise, noticing a small round disk that Tenzin was carrying in his hand.
“It’s a badge that I ordered in the mail,” said Tenzin. “You need to wear one when you go inside.”
“What does it say – PriscongLover?” asked Kaddo quizzically.
“That’s my nickname,” Tenzin answered. “You pick something to call yourself when you sign up to use the Legend of Ong Global Infodex.”
“Weird…” muttered Kaddo.
Aang let out another sigh. “Is this place far out of the way?”
“Not at all, Dad,” said Tenzin reassuringly. “It’s actually pretty close.”
“Well…if you insist, I guess you can pay this place a quick visit to get it out of your system,” Aang conceded. “Just don’t take too long. Kaddo, Vameira and I will run ahead to grab some tea.”
While Tenzin went to immerse himself in the wonders of the Legend of Ong Global Infodex, Aang, Kaddo and Vameira made their way over to the Jasmine Dragon and sat themselves down at one of the elegant window-side tables with three refreshing cups of hot jasmine tea. They had barely gotten settled when Tenzin came through the front door of the establishment and spotted them.
“You got out quicker than I thought,” remarked Aang. “How was your time there?”
“It was fine,” answered Tenzin gloomily.
“I guess it didn’t quite live up to your hype,” said Kaddo smugly.
“Oh, no,” said Tenzin. “The Infodex was great. I just had to leave a little sooner than I expected.”
“What did you do when you got there?” asked Aang.
“Well, the place was so big,” Tenzin replied. “I didn’t know where to begin at first, so I searched around and found the article for my favorite chapter in Volume One, Cato of the Snow Village. Ong and Priscilla had a bit of a moment at the end of that chapter where it looked like they were gonna kiss. It turned out that they didn’t, but I thought it would’ve been so much cooler if they did, so I edited the summary of the chapter to say that they kissed!”
“Okay,” said Aang. “How’d that go over?”
“Not so good,” responded Tenzin. “Some guy approached me and told me that the information in my edit was false and that I shouldn’t be doing that. He said that he was giving me a warning, but I told him to back off. I also told him how stupid he was to like Gorscilla instead of Priscong.”
“Sounds like you were getting yourself into trouble,” said Kaddo.
“How’d it end?” asked Aang, taking a sip of his jasmine tea.
“One of the men who helped run the place came up to us – he called himself The 777th Crystalbender. He said that I was vandalizing and harassing and that I was banned from the Infodex for two weeks.”
“Hah-hah!” Vameira jeered.
“Well, I don’t plan for us to be staying in Ba Sing Se for two weeks,” Aang told him. “So I’m afraid that you won’t be going back anytime soon.”
“That’s too bad,” noted Tenzin. “There was a whole separate section to the building where people can write their own stories based on The Legend of Ong continuity. I was thinking that I might do that next time I go back.”
“Really?” questioned Aang.
“Yeah,” said Tenzin. “Some of them are pretty good, like A Bat Could Love A Flounder, Eyes of Priscilla, Crystal Guardian, Crystal Rhythm, The Weather Crystals, Crystals of the Burning Earth, The First Sky Crystal, Heiress to the Crystal Throne…”
“Okay,” said Kaddo, waving his hand. “You’ve made your point.”
“There was another,” said Tenzin, raising his voice. “It’s called The Legend of Ung and the Lavabenders. It features the main characters of The Legend of Ong series reading a story about other versions of themselves in a similar story. ‘Ong’ is ‘Ung’ and so on. Then, inside that, there’s another story-within-a-story where…”
Aang cut him off, rolling his eyes. “I think we’ve taken this far enough.”
- This chapter is dedicated to the many users of Avatar Wiki!
- This one-shot takes place in the “Energyverse” between Chapter 35: Legends and Chapter 36: Reunion and Discovery, when Aang and company are in Ba Sing Se.