Slythrin (not, not that one): "No one is innocent!"
Avatar: Better World (usually abbreviated as merely "BW") is an Avatar: The Last Airbender drama fan fic written by SuperFlash101 (or "The Flash"), described by said author as a "character study with lots and lots of blood." Basically, it's a Continuation fic that focuses on Aang's attempts to rebuild the world, but discovers that he has a lot more crap on his hands then he expected. Though the beginning of the story focuses on assassins known as the "Wind Killers" trying to kill Aang, as the series progresses it delves into a more longrunning conspiracy involving an apparently psycho-religious group of terrorist radicals know as The Dogs. The fic uses a lot of symbolism and is far more grittier and violent then the actual show.
Original characters in the fic include:
- Yino: De facto leader of the "Wind Killers" (at least while Ozai is imprisoned). Described as masking his incredible cowardliness with his pretty badass Firebending abilities, Yino compensates for his fear of Ozai by being ruthless towards his underlings. When he finally decides to try and kill Aang himself, he is killed by Sokka, who survived a previous near-deadly assault dished out by Yino himself.
- Lee Koisho: One of the assassins sent to kill Aang; he's sadistic, skilled, and aggresive. He only appears in chapter 2, in which he dies. Still, he's one of the fics most popular characters.
- Lee: A different Lee who works for a Committee bent on improving Ba Sing Se. Following the murder of fellow Committee member Methius, he sets out on a quest with Slythrin to find the murderers and put a stop to them.
- Slythrin: Named after the Harry Potter house of a similar name, Slythrin is an Anti-Hero if there ever was one. During the quest, he displays rash, violent interrogation tactics and is deeply philosophical, a trait he starts to try and push on Lee. In "...For I Have Sinned" he is revealed to be a member of The Dogs.
The fic has been incredibly well received by reviewers at Avatar Wiki, where the series won a "Fanon Award" for "Outstanding Drama Series" in 2010. The first 5 chapters can be read at FanFiction.Net, while the rest is available at Avatar Wiki.
Avatar: Better World provides examples of:
- Alas, Poor Villain: Lee Koisho.
- And Yino.
- Abusive Parents: Lee's father, both physically and verbally.
- A Day In The Lime Light: "The Will of All Mankind," which is all about Sokka. Interestingly, it was published to coincide with the new chapter of a Sokka-centric fic Flash was doing, an event he called "Sokka-to-Me."
- Alternate Character Interpretation: Slythrin's violent mood is to mask his true sensitivity over never being hugged as a child
- Anti-Hero: Slythrin and Lee, though more so Slythrin, who, ya know, goes Rorschach and breaks people's fingers to find out information.
- Bloodless Carnage: Averted. When there's violence, it's bloody and oftentimes gorey.
- Cain and Abel: Lee and his little brother Didi. The chapter the latter appears in, entitled "Be Thou a Cain," is actually an overt parable of the Cain and Abel story, complete with Lee killing Didi in the end. Brutally.
- Darker and Edgier
- Ensemble Dark Horse: As mentioned above, Lee Koisho. Despite being in only one chapter where he is killed off screen he became Flash's most lauded original character. So much, in fact, that in a satirical Crossover on Avatar Wiki (entitled Clash of Worlds) he's essentially the main character. Even more so in the sequel to said crossover.
- Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Slythrin, especially in the bar in "Spare the Innocent."
- Magnificent Bastard: Holy crap—every villain in the whole Goddamn story.
- One Steve Limit: Due to a line in "Sokka's Master" about there being tons of Lee's the author purposely gave unrelated characters the same name for world building purposes.
- Out of Focus: Despite acting as a continuation of the series several important characters have thus far not appeared or appeared only minimally. (i.e Toph, Katara & Iroh)
- Precision F-Strike: Aang, who almost never swears, gets one in "...For I Have Sinned."(After the Earth King gets knocked unconscious while they're trying to escape a burning building) "Well, dammit!"
- Psycho for Hire: About every assassin Aang faces in the first arc of the fic.
- Purple Prose: Happens a lot, particularly in dialogue form, which is eventually Lampshaded in "...For I Have Sinned" by Lee (from Construction) after Slythrin's traditional Purple Dialogue.
- Sitting on the Roof: Subverted in "Forgive Me, Lord": Sokka contemplates suicide while standing on the roof, while Katara comes up to try and tell him to stay alive.
- Smug Snake: Slythrin. Just Slythrin...
- Subverted, even. Nearly every other thing he says is described as a "hiss." Ya get it?
- Spotlight-Stealing Squad: At times the antics of Lee and Slythrin seem to divert attention away from Aang's storyline.
- True Art Is Angsty: Nearly every main character has moments of angst.
- Lampshaded in Clash of Worlds. Aang is sitting in his room, banging his head, and repeatedly saying "Angst."