🌻 Aparajita Kikoro 🌻

IGN: AparajitaK

Name: Aparajita Kikoro

Title: Chancellor of the Earth Kingdom

Age: 52

Pronouns: She / Her

Nationality: Earth Kingdom

Hometown: Ba Sing Se

Personality

Aparajita (pronounced ah-PAH-rah-JEE-tah) is a courteous, determined, and intellectual woman who constantly works to change the Earth Kingdom for the better, seeing it to be her life’s goal. She always tries to keep a level head no matter what situation she may be placed in. Her tone is always very formal, whether she be around companions or higher-ups. Being truthful to the people and having loyalty to the Earth Kingdom and its citizens matter the most to her, and she values her work above all, including her own wellbeing. But rather than doing it out of pride, she does it out of the responsibility she feels to uphold the position she has been granted for her work. For Aparajita, logic and reason are above emotional reactions, as she was raised to see that in the real world, such reactions would get in the way. She is closed off in a personal sense, however she is open to speaking to new people and will always try to be polite to strangers.

Strengths: Aparajita thrives in formal situations where she is able to skillfully and respectfully express her opinion, as well as the voices and needs of her people. She has a way with words that garners the attention of those around her, which is helpful for persuasion, and has a keen ability to pick up on the behavior and oddities of others, allowing her to occasionally pick out a lie or two that might get thrown around. She is extremely organized and prioritizes her work correctly. Additionally, she is an excellent earthbender, having been trained since she was little by experts in Ba Sing Se and then finishing her mastery with Lord Habien Hanri years ago.

Weaknesses: Aparajita is very strict on never speaking about her past, feeling it to be a very uncomfortable subject; in general she will grow very uncomfortable at the continued mention or discussion of family, whether it be hers or not. Due to being unable to break out of her formal demeanor, she can often come off as odd or intimidating, giving her much difficulty making connections outside of work. She has a hard time expressing her actual emotions or taking any form of physical contact (i.e. hugs). Additionally, a terrorist incident in Gaoling left her with many explosion scars on her body, the largest being in the center of her chest. It prevents her from exerting herself too much, and she is generally more sensitive in that area.

Appearance

Aparajita is a much taller than average woman, standing at about six feet tall. Her brown hair, which is almost ridiculously long when loose, is typically tied up in some form of a bun, held together by ornate gold pins. Her expression rests as a calm stare accompanied by narrow, strikingly amber-orange eyes. The left side of her face, the center of her chest, and parts of her arms have burn and explosion scars on them from an incident in Gaoling, but she does not go out of her way to cover them. While she has a wide wardrobe, she can often be seen in either a green, white, and gold hanbok, or a variety of dark green kimonos with gold and black embellishments. She is always adorned in some form of gold jewelry and accessories, particularly favoring her long gold earrings and fancy hairpieces.

Additional Facts

Likes: Turtle ducks Gold Paperwork Her cousins Sunflowers

Dislikes: Family visits Spicy food Cicadas Rowdiness Being idle

While she happens to have expensive taste and enjoys gold accessories, she is not materialistic; that is to say, she does not believe one has to have fancy things in order to be valued as a person, nor would she be at all devastated if she did not have her gold.

She is very averse to Fire Nation cuisine. Not because of it being from the Fire Nation, but just because often times it’ll be too spicy for her.

Due to being absolutely horrific with interior design, Aparajita often has to hire someone else to decorate her home for her, lest people bear witness to an absolutely atrocious use of furniture.

Aparajita has held numerous charity events during her time as Chancellor, and worked to reform the Dai Li both before and after her promotion to Chancellor.

Backstory

Aparajita was born and raised in the upper ring of Ba Sing Se, the sole daughter to parents both wealthy and influential. Before the two retired in their older age, her mother had been an advisor on the Earth Kingdom’s council, and her father a powerful general, with the both being quite a bit conceited. Ever since she was little she was told by her parents she was “destined” to become one of the greatest leaders Ba Sing Se had ever known; in other words, they drilled the notion into her head that she was required to work hard and be exactly like them when she was an adult. Her education was a mix of her parents’ homeschooling and private tutors they hired for her, believing that she may become tainted by the relationships she could form with other kids by going to a public school. They wanted absolutely no distractions for her, and told her they ‘just weren’t like her’. Aparajita never really knew what she was missing, so she thought nothing of growing up alone. As her parents had hoped, she never formed any relationships with people as a child outside of her immediate family, including her cousins, who were shielded away from her for years.

“They could not hope to understand you, flower. You are so beyond what they will ever be.”

Her intellect proved to rival even her own parents’ as she advanced quickly through her studies, adapting to the wide vocabulary being taught to her and picking up on formalities and persuasive techniques with almost eagerness. By the time she was twelve years old, her parents began taking her to their meetings and events, wanting her to try out her new abilities on real people despite her still being so young. She was disciplined harshly if her tactics failed and she was unable to push her opinion to the focus of the meeting, but after a few more attempts she grew to understand the professional setting better and was able to garner the attention of the adults. Although her parents showered her with praise at her successes, she knew deep down they were most likely less proud of her as a person and more proud of the politician she would be, and the politician they created. By the time she was sixteen years old, by utilizing her parents’ own tactics she convinced them to allow her to abstain from attending the meetings, claiming she didn’t need to go anymore. They wanted to be angry at the pushback from her, however they felt too prideful that their own teachings were so effective as to be useful against themselves.

By the time Aparajita had reached the age of eighteen, her parents assigned her with a special task: She was to travel to Gaipan, which was known for its particularly interesting mix of Earth Kingdom and Fire Nation culture, and influence the politics there, with her end goal being to become the mayor. They didn’t care if it took her years, only that she succeeded. Being as it was that her life’s path was laid out for her from the start, she had no objection to this. She packed her things, gathered enough money to live comfortably, and set off to purchase a small home in Gaipan. The living space was much different from what she had been used to, but she got used to it, and didn’t mind it at all. It was interesting to see what life was like outside of the fanciful walls her parents surrounded her with her entire existence. During her time trying to get acquainted with the residents before her plan to campaign in a year, she began to grow close to a kind boy who was about her age.

“You’re kinda weird… But, that’s okay. My friends tell me I’m weird too! I’m Rirahn.”

The boy was very enthusiastic and cheerful, albeit a bit dense, but quickly grew attached to Aparajita. He found her to be fascinating and was very curious about her upbringing, due to the way she dressed and the way in which she spoke being so different from most of the people in Gaipan. She, in return, became curious about him and his way of life; her curiosity was initially from wanting to connect more with Gaipan in order to become the mayor someday, as her parents wanted, but she would soon find herself forgetting about that on more than one occasion, and the two often met up to chat, hang out, or train together. There was never any sort of romantic connection, or at least Aparajita never saw it to be anything like that, but the two grew very close. She had never really had a companion of any sort, much less like him. She was very awkward around him at first, but he didn’t really care. He got used to the way she acted, and didn’t pressure her to act any different.

By the time the two were both 19, they had especially bonded over a love for a certain animal: the turtle duck. There was a small turtle duck pond by the town hall that they wanted to expand, and so they spent months planning and drawing out an idea for it. They wanted to add a swinging bench, expand the pond size, and add more stone pathing towards it. They had other ideas for the town too, but wanted to wait for their mayor to approve the turtle duck pond first. But on that fateful day where they were about to enter the town hall with their blueprints, a commotion sounded from the entrance of the town, and donned in their expensive golden clothing entered her parents, whom she hadn’t seen in over a year. Upon seeing her not only having failed in making any progress on her assignment, they grew angry at the sight of her friend, and blamed him for half of her failure.

“How appalling. You are coming home with us right this instant. I want to hear nothing out of you.”

Without much of a choice, being berated in front of the whole of Gaipan, Aparajita was dragged back to the inner walls of Ba Sing Se. Away from her only friend, whom she never heard from again. She assumes that he hates her for leaving so suddenly, but at the time she felt she had no other option. She had never disobeyed her parents before, and she had never failed to such a degree either. The words they spoke to her when they had returned to the Kikoro estate are those that she will refuse to ever repeat to this day, but it was enough for her to return to her duties at home, studying and practicing for being a future diplomat. She knew she had to make up for becoming so distracted. Making a turtle duck pond would not help the future of the Earth Kingdom. Becoming the leader that her parents had trained her for would.

Most of her goals as she studied the world around her were focused on the needs of people. Even though her experience in Gaipan had ended negatively, being there gave her a valuable lesson. Many of the people in that village, and others similar to it, did not live very comfortably at all, especially when compared to the luxurious and carefree lives people in the upper ring lived. Some people in the upper ring did truly work for their money, but many simply sat on family riches, while people in the lower ring or poorer villages across the kingdom would work for days on end only to end up with a fraction of what the rich had. She wanted to help people, and would stop at nothing to do so. This, however, was not exactly what her parents had in mind, expecting her to lean more into military work or being an advisor to higher ranks until she could get up there herself. As she grew older and began to slowly see through her parents’ facades, she argued more frequently with them, trying to debate that her goals were more noble than what they wanted for her. Or, that she could still be what they wanted while helping the people. It was worth noting that they also intended to use their influence to push her into a high role early, without having to do the lower work to get there. The idea of this kind of nepotism disgusted her. At the age of twenty-two, against the instincts her parents worked so hard to condition, she permanently left home to further her career in the Earth Kingdom the way she wanted to. Not how they wanted.

After a few years of living on her own, creating a comfortable life for herself in Matsu Village in order to further connect with her community, she decided to apply for the military. She knew it would take a long time to reach a point where she could make a direct change in the kingdom and would have to build her career from the ground up, so she began by working her way through the military ranks. When she introduced herself, she attempted to draw attention away from her family name. Not quite out of shame, but more so to avoid any possible changes in attitude towards her. She wanted people to see her for her, and not her family influence. Though it took her many years, she rose through the ranks and grew to be a good confidant of Ako Nonan, the Grand Secretariat at the time. Through her recommendation, Aparajita applied to be Queen Kyo Shui’s advisor, and was granted the position.

Over the next decade, she would diligently continue her work, and the path she walked down soon led her to officiating the coronation of King Habien Hanri, who had been the Grand Secretariat after Ako Nonan, and was chosen by Hiqora after Queen Kyo abdicated the throne. Not long after this event, Habien called her to Fong’s Fortress with special news: he was splitting the responsibilities of the Grand Secretariat into two jobs, adding the role of Chancellor. The Grand Secretariat, which would be granted to previous princess Hana Lin, would handle all external affairs and jobs directly concerning the monarch, while the Chancellor would handle all internal affairs. He appointed Aparajita as the Earth Kingdom’s first Chancellor, and she vowed to uphold the responsibility that came with this position to her full potential.

“I am honored, your Majesty. I promise to see to it that the Earth Kingdom prospers.”

Aparajita’s life continued as mostly normal and consistent from then on. She worked closely alongside the King in working to make the Earth Kingdom a better place, holding charity events and often holding censuses to gather information on the villages across the kingdom. Whenever she had the time-- which was not often during the first years of her new role-- she would visit the various villages herself, talking to people and getting their direct opinions. Additionally, she successfully reformed the Dai Li over time, ensuring that any members were put through rigorous training and understood the conditions of being a Dai Li, as well as performing consistent background checks on any active members.

Gaoling

During this period of her life, she came back into contact with her cousins, whom she had seen glimpses of only rarely when she was a young child during large family gatherings. She had never had family to speak to before other than her parents, and so it was awkward at first, but she found that her and her cousins shared similar tentative and uncomfortable feelings about their parents. Using the money she had from her position, she purchased an estate in Gaoling for her new family, and had it furnished to all their likings. This time was filled with just as much joy as it was drama and arguments, but regardless of all of that, deep down she was simply overjoyed to find that she had blood relatives who really cared about her, and cared about each other, too. She’d never say that out loud, though.

Other events have occurred in her life that might be considered important, although she may glaze over them if they’re brought up in conversation. She aided in stopping a terrorist attack and robbery in Gaoling, but in exchange received multiple explosion scars. This included a nasty one right on her chest, and it prevented her from fully exerting herself. However, she still manages to retain much of her strength as a master earthbender, and after training and honing her craft with Habien for over a decade, one could say she has a particularly unique strength to her that she does not often use…

Nowadays, Aparajita spends much of her time in either Fong’s Fortress or her villa in Jehung, as her cousins are more often than not busy with their own lives. She knows she’ll see them all together again someday, and doesn’t feel much stress about it. Despite her age slowly beginning to creep up on her, she dedicates herself to her work with the same enthusiasm as she had over two decades ago, endlessly loyal to the Earth Kingdom and its people.

Art!

Beautiful art done by Sasspai :heart:

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