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Curiousity Killed the Fire Cat

Title: Curiosity Killed the Fire Cat
Author: iceprincessd
Rating: G
Prompt: Places (#5 Library)
Characters/Pairing: Iroh + Lu Ten
Warnings: none
Summary: There are some books that one should handle with adult supervision.

Iroh’s personal library was littered with various scrolls and parchments, all ready to impart their vast knowledge to whoever desired to open them. For a scholar, it would have been a paradise. Five-year-old Lu Ten preferred to count the tiles on the floor, hopping from plain tiles to ones that had lotuses engraved on them. He tried to keep quiet while his father searched for something, he really did, but it was hard when the temptation to pretend that he was an antlion was so strong.

On Iroh’s part, he filtered out the roaring his son was doing on the other end of the room as background noise. There was a bit of information that was niggling at the back of his mind all day and he wanted to see if it was true or just something that he might have made up in the place the mind rests between sleep and alertness. Here in his library he felt at ease, the scent of old paper and ink familiar comforts. He was so intent on finding what he was searching for that he failed to notice when antlion Lu Ten’s roars had stopped.

Head cocked to the side, Lu Ten was on his hands and knees when he found a scroll that had supposedly fallen from a lower shelf that had rolled under a low table. It bore a broken seal emblazoned with the Fire Nation sigil, which he instantly recognized from his lessons at school every day. He crawled further under the table, he stuck his tongue out as he reached for it, the tips of his fingers barely brushing it. He let out a small noise of triumph when he managed to grab a hold of the scroll, then, imitating his father, he carefully unrolled it. What was inside made his eyes widen.

Disappointed that the Earth Kingdom did not have a very prosperous port city that specialized in the blending of specialty teas – the position of the city would have been beneficial to his nation should his father’s army invade and the trade that they were renown for would have made conquering it all the more enjoyable – Iroh suddenly realized that the sharp odor of burning paper was quite out of context. Snapping his head up from his maps and texts, he found that the reason his son had been so quiet was because he was trying hard to stamp out a small fire. Running over, he doused the flame with the remains of his tea.

After making certain that Lu Ten was unharmed and the fire completely out, he bent and picked up the soggy piece of parchment. It had only gotten scorched at the edges, and once the tea had dried from it, it would be fine. He frowned as he recognized the images as bending forms. “Which one were you trying to do?”

Glad that his father wasn’t angry with him, Lu Ten pointed to one. “Soaring Phoenix. See?” He raised his arms to mimic the first part of the form, but Iroh put a hand on his shoulder.


Lu Ten ducked his head. “Sorry.”

Using his thumb and forefinger, Iroh tilted his son’s head up. “Why don’t we practice these outside instead?” He couldn’t stay angry, not when his son had actually bended using highly advanced forms. “But there’s a new rule. No firebending in the library.

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February 2019


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