Toph of the Desert

Naruto/A:TLA. Toph Beifong wakes up in [Naruto's world] and she has no idea where to go. She wanders around for a while and, after a while, finds herself in the Village Hidden in the Sand. The Kazekage, Gaara of the Desert, offers her sanctuary for a while. What happens? Read to find out!

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9. Eight

[Toph]

 

Mummy! A mummy! That's the word I was looking for! Y'know, when I was talking about before when I was... yeah. Nevermind.

Okay, I got him there.

Gaara was silent. I thought that he must've been blind not to notice that I was blind, before taking that thought back.

"You seriously did not notice?" I scoffed. "It is so obvious!"

Gaara slowly sat down again. "I never would have guessed," he said quietly. "How you manage is beyond me."

I rolled my eyes. "Sandman, I told you -"

"Sandman?"

I shrugged. "Everyone's gotta have a nickname, right?" When he didn't answer, I continued: "Anyway, I told you the first day we met that I feel vibrations in the ground. It's kinda like seeing with my feet. Which is why I don't wear shoes. The one time I did during the war, I had to kick the sole out of one of them. 'Perfect shoe for the blind earthbender!' " I quoted myself.

"So," Gaara began uncertainly, "this war you're always talking about, is it one of the Great Shinobi wars?" he asked.

"Shi-no-bi wars?" I sounded out. What is with this place and hard-to-say words?? "Um, what the hell is that?"

Gaara sighed. "There have been three Great Shinobi wars since Shinobi first started. The last one ended about twenty-six years ago."

I pondered this. "Well, no." I said. "I am talking about the hundred-year war that was started by the Fire Nation, that ended... four years ago." 

"One hundred years?!" Gaara's voice was shocked (I know! He actually had emotion in his voice! Crazy!) and I swore I could hear his heartbeat. "That long?"

"Yup." I nodded. "Me, Aang, Sokka, Katara and Zuko ended it all. Oh yeah, and Suki."

"How?"

"By invading the Fire Nation, nearly dying, getting attacked by combustion man, nearly dying, crashing some airships, nearly dying and defeating the Fire Lord, Ozai." I counted off on my fingers. "Hang on, I think I'm missing something. Oh yeah, and nearly dying. But we're all still alive!"

Gaara was speechless. "Not even the Shinobi wars lasted that long..."

"They must have been pre-tty bad, huh?" I noted.

"We lost many." Gaara admitted, but said no more on the subject. I decided that it would be best not to push it.

"So..." I began, unsure of where to go next. "Good fight?"

I heard Gaara nod. "I'm impressed by how you can use ju - I mean, earthbend without being ale to see."

I rolled my eyes. It just isn't sinking in, is it? "Being blind is a major advantage, actually!" I said. "Feeling vibrations is really helpful when you're an earthbender. You can pinpoint the slightest movements and take 'em out. Just like the badgermoles."

"Badgermoles?"

"You really don't know much, do you?" I scoffed. "Badgermoles were the original earthbenders. They're blind, just like me, and they taught me how to get around."

"I see." His voice was as monotone as ever, though I could tell he was still confused. I don't know how I knew, I just did.

"So how do you do it?" I asked.

"Hm?"

I hung my head. This guy was good in a fight, but maybe this was a little too hard for him. I sighed. "You claim you don't know what bending is, and yet you're the best sandbender I have ever seen! And that's saying something, I have met a few sandbenders. Not the kindest people."

"Oh." Gaara seemed to turn away. "That's not bending." He muttered. "You wouldn't understand."

"Try me." I insisted. "I've come across a fair few weird things in my time. And I'm only sixteen!"

Gaara sighed. He was silent for a while, before giving in. "The reason I can do that is because of the demon that's sealed inside of me."

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