The Five Nations (Chapter One-Part One)

The Five Nations (Chapter One-Part One)

Victoria Bottner, Editor

The Five Nations

Chapter One: All the Nations

There once were Five Nations, maybe soon, maybe later, maybe now, maybe in the past, maybe in the upside-down.   Each had its own power and was ruled by a King or Queen. The Five Nations lived together, each having their own section of the world until the Fire Nation didn’t want harmony anymore. The King of the Fire Nation told his troops to stop hurting people, and so they listened. But then the King of the fire nation had a child and that completely stripped his powers, making him no more than a common foreigner. 

His child was ruthless and wanted to take over the nations. So, he made an “offering” to each of the nations that they shall present the weakest child to him every year as a sacrifice and he shall not hurt their kingdom. This tradition is as old as time itself in the five nations-and no one has ever looked back. The other nations now had comfort knowing that their kingdoms were going to be safe. 

 

Part One: Jessica-Forest Nation

The sun shone brightly into Jessica’s window, and her green eyes sprung open. She scrambled out of bed, hopping on one foot so she could put her other shoe on.  She sprinted down the hall of her maple brown cabin, making her way to the kitchen. 

“Hello, mama! It is a beautiful day in the Forest Nation!  What do you think,” Jessica asked her mother. She grabbed a bread roll and started chewing with her mouth open. 

“Yes, it is Jessica, now stop chewing with your mouth open and go help your papa,” her mother said. Her mother’s eyes were glued to the dough for the bread she was making. Jessica sprung out of the wooden door, making it shut with a big bang.

Outside, Jessica’s father was leaning over their garden bed, his hands were rough and dry. Cracks ran down them, each little vain could be seen through his thin skin. 

“Oh, good mornin’ darling! How did you sleep?” Jessica’s father asked her. Although he hardly gave Jessica any time to say anything before he cut her off again.

“I need you to make the plants grow. You know, since your mom and I had you and lost all of our powers.” 

“Papa, you tell me this every morning,” Jessica said. She rolled her eyes and bent over to help her father. Her father wiped the sweat from his forehead and walked over to the neighbor’s garden. 

Jessica put her hand down on the cold soil and made little sprouts come out of her fingers. The vines twisted, turned and wrapped around her fingers. Little bits of dirt bounced up and down as the plants came up. She felt a slight vibration in her fingers as the ground shook slightly. Usually, the plant people could make plants grow by just putting their hands down, but for Jessica the plants would take a day to grow. Then they would be at their full size, and that would be just in time. Tomorrow was the picking. 

The Queen of the Forest Nation would test anyone from age 14-24 on skills that they needed in the Forest Nation (such as making huge plants that sometimes weighed more than 2 tons, intelligence, and more. The weakest would be the sacrifice to the fire nation to be a slave for the rest of their life. But Jessica didn’t care, she knew she was going to win, which meant that she wouldn’t get picked. If she got picked she would just hide in one of the trees for the rest of her life. She pondered on this thought as she went throughout her mother and father’s garden-pulling weeds and growing plants.

When lunchtime hit, her mother came outside holding rolls, ham, mixed vegetables, and fruit. 

“You have to eat up Jessica,” her mom said.  “You know the picking is tomorrow.”

“I will eat, but I am not scared of picking.  Or really what will happen at the picking.  I am faster than anyone here and more skilled,” Jessica replied. She shoved her mouth full and then went inside to go to sleep like she did every day after 2:00 pm. The Forest Nation people were not lazy, but they did go to sleep very early in the afternoon and for Jessica even earlier. 

Jessica’s mother had to wake her up the next morning. In her mother’s hands were two knives, a shovel, and a rope. 

Jessica was groggy and she didn’t understand. Her throat hurt from all of the snoring she did the night before. Jessica started to open her mouth but her mother clasped her hand over her mouth instead. Her mother’s hand shook slightly, her lips were pursed together. They were thin and made the wrinkles on her light skin pop out a bit more, each line making her face look a bit old. A strand of hair was out of her bun, she tucked the grey and brown hair behind her ear and removed her hand from Jessica’s mouth. She stood back up and whispered in a light voice to Jessica. 

“Shhh. I have to go with your papa to watch from the stands. The Queen will come soon to collect you. This was all I was allowed to bring you. Breakfast rolls are on the table.”

Jessica’s mom stroked Jessica’s hair and sighed. Then she turned to the door and walked out.