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Kya (waterbender)

Full Name





The Legend of Korra


Waterbending master, master healer


Waterbending, including all of it's sub-types, such as manipulating ice


Meditating, encouraging and supporting her brothers, helping others in need


To protect the world from 10,000 years of darkness (season 2)
To stop the Red Lotus (season 3)

Type of Hero

Sibling / Nurturer / Amazon turned Outright Heroine

You think you're the responsible one? Where were you after Dad died and Mom was all alone? Because I was the only one who packed up and moved my whole life to be with her.
~ Kya to Tenzin

Kya is one of the supporting characters of The Legend of Korra. She is the second of Avatar Aang and Katara's three children and their only daughter, as well as the couple's only waterbending child. As such, she always felt a stronger connection with her mother.

This article is about the only daughter of Aang and Katara. To look for her mother's parent, see this article.


Early life

Aang, Katara, and their children

Kya stood for a photo with her family when she was just a young girl.

Growing up, Kya and her older brother, Bumi, enjoyed teasing and roughhousing their younger brother, Tenzin. Although the three siblings maintained a relatively healthy relationship, Kya and Bumi became distant with their father due to his fixation on saving the world, preserving the Air Nomad culture and training Tenzin, the only other airbender in the family. Consequently, Kya developed a stronger connection with Katara, who taught her waterbending. In the process, Kya had developed her waterbending and healing abilities to proficiency.

As she became older, Kya traveled around the world, which Tenzin described as "finding herself". However, after Aang's passing in 153 AG, Kya returned to the Southern Water Tribe to tend to her grieving mother, as her brothers were occupied by their professions.

Reuniting the family

Bumi and Kya teasing Tenzin

Bumi and Kya teased Tenzin at the Glacier Spirits Festival royal banquet.

In 171 AG, Kya attended the Glacier Spirits Festival in the Southern Water Tribe. She awaited the arrival of her brothers at the dock, eagerly greeting her niece, Jinora, while stating that Tenzin did not bring his family around nearly enough. As she greeted her younger brother, she playfully put forward Tenzin's fear of her as the reason why they never visited. She later attended the royal banquet in honor of Chief Unalaq, during which she seemingly came to Tenzin's rescue when Bumi was teasing him, though used the opportunity to jab at him as well. That night, Kya was awoken by the attack of a dark spirit, though by the time she arrived, the entity had already been calmed by Unalaq. She witnessed how Korra thanked Tenzin for his tutelage thus far, though decided that she no longer required his services. Some time later, Kya, together with Bumi and Katara, came to see Tenzin off as he prepared to take off toward the Southern Air Temple. She ended up accompanying her younger brother at the insistence of their mother, joyously expressing her eagerness to see the "laid back vacation Tenzin".

Family troubles

Arriving at the Southern Air Temple, Kya and Bumi were not treated with the same respect as Tenzin and his family, as one Air Acolyte did not even know that Aang had any other children, believing Kya and her brother to be the servants. They grew even more annoyed when the woman apologized to them for their lack of airbending abilities.

Kya chiding Tenzin

Kya chided Tenzin for being too much like Aang: focused too much on his work and his duty and too little on his family.

During her stay at the Southern Air Temple, Kya used her time to relax and joke around with her brothers. However, when Tenzin expressed his joy over having his siblings around, as it reminded him of all the vacations they took as children with their dad, Kya grew annoyed, as she and Bumi where never part of those vacations. However, her mood brightened when Jinora and Meelo arrived as well. When it was discovered that Ikki had run away, she suggested that she and her two brothers would search for her together. However, by dusk, they still had not found any trace of the young airbender. When Tenzin mused that Ikki's disappearance was probably his fault, Kya was quick to agree with him, explaining that he had likely been too busy with his duty to Republic City that he had forgotten to spend time with his children, just like Aang had been with them. She chided Tenzin for being under the false impression that they all had had a happy-go-lucky childhood, when that had not been the case for her and Bumi. As Tenzin attempted to avoid talking further about the subject, she mocked him for his "classic airbending technique" of evading things when they get tough.

Even after the night had fallen, the trio continued their search for Ikki, with Bumi entertaining his siblings with grandiose stories over his past search and rescue missions. As her brothers began to bicker, an annoyed Kya left them to it and walked on, finding the first trace of her niece, namely footprints leading down a trail next to a waterfall. As Kya and Tenzin moved to follow the prints, Bumi suggested that they descend via the waterfall as that would be much quicker. Kya opposed the idea initially, stating that the darkness and the slippery rocks would make it a very dangerous journey, but after Bumi confidently stated that if he, a nonbender, could make his way down, it should not be any trouble for two benders, she and Tenzin swiftly made their way down, using their respective bending arts. Reaching the bottom way before her older brother, she mocked him for his slow pace, though grew worried as the retired commander slipped and fell the entire way down into the water.

Kya healing Bumi

Kya healed her brother, Bumi.

Kya started to heal the injured Bumi, though quickly got into an argument with him over his immaturity over their bending abilities. However, when Tenzin stated that he had to be the responsible one of the trio, Kya grew annoyed with him as well, refuting his claim by stating that she was the only one who had taken on the responsibility of taking care of their mother when their father had died, though Tenzin minimized that responsibility by pointing out that she had moved all over the world for years before that, arguing it had been time for her to settle down anyway. The argument quickly escalated, turning back to the core issue that Tenzin was heavily favored by Aang and made it his sole responsibility of carrying on Aang's legacy, as opposed to doing that with his siblings. Irritated, she stated that she never should have accompanied Tenzin on his vacation, something her brothers swiftly agreed to. Kya and Bumi curtly agreed to go back to the temple to see if Ikki had returned, while Tenzin kept looking on his own.

The next day, Kya found Bumi in the air temple sanctuary, looking at their father's statue. Hearing her brother's unanswered search for their father's approval, she hugged him, assuring the ex-commander that Aang would most definitely be proud of him.

After Tenzin returned with Ikki, she apologized for dumping her frustrations about their dad on him and showed her siblings a picture of them with their parents when they were younger that she had received from Katara before they left the Southern Water Tribe. A few days later, she witnessed in awe as her oldest nephew orchestrated a ring-tailed winged lemur air show.

Eastern Air Temple

Kya suspects

Kya eyed her eldest niece, suspecting her to be hiding something.

Having arrived at the Eastern Air Temple, Kya engaged in a discussion with her older brother, calling him out to be a liar for claiming that he once won a rock-throwing contest against an earthbender. Their conversation was cut short when Tenzin announced their itinerary for the day. However, before they could embark on the tour of the temple, Korra arrived, pleasantly surprising everyone. She was shocked to learn the events they had missed by being closed off from the outside world. When it became apparent that Korra needed to enter the Spirit World, Kya tried to help out as much as she could, and followed Tenzin's instructions carefully when placing incense sticks. However, she got blamed by the airbending master for his failure to cross over to the Spirit World. She did not press the matter and was distracted by Jinora who ran off, seemingly chasing something. However, when Kya asked about it, Jinora brushed her off and left, leaving Kya to her own suspicions.
Kya, Jinora, and Korra

Kya reassured Jinora that Tenzin was not mad at her, merely jealous over her ability to connect with spirits in a way that he could not.

Kya returned to the air temple, where she was shocked to hear Tenzin's confession that he had never been to the Spirit World before. When Korra emphasized her urgency to get to the Spirit World, Kya acted upon her suspicions and pushed Jinora to reveal her secret, namely that she had been conversing with spirits. Following the dragonfly bunny spirits to an ancient meditation circle, Kya reassured her eldest niece that Tenzin was not mad at her, but was merely suffering from a bruised ego.

As they arrived at the location, Kya witnessed Tenzin perform a cleansing ceremony. However, the ritual drew out a swarm of bat-like dark spirits that promptly attacked them. She protected Jinora with her body until Korra used Unalaq's purification technique to calm them down.

Kya spent the remainder of the day waiting with the others while Tenzin attempted to cross over to the Spirit World through meditation. When it became apparent that it was not going to work, she told her brother to stop being so stubborn and let Jinora fulfill her destiny by guiding Korra into the Spirit World. As Korra and Jinora crossed over, Kya and her brothers remained behind to keep their bodies safe until they returned.

As they sat around a campfire next to the girls' bodies, Kya tried to comfort her younger brother, who was worrying about Jinora being in the Spirit World, by pointing out that his daughter was smart and had a strong connection to the spirits. After Bumi took offense to Tenzin's suggestion that Korra and Jinora would be defenseless without their bending, Kya interjected that Bumi's situation was different due to his positive attitude. She and Bumi were subsequently advised by Tenzin to get some rest, who offered to take first watch. Before lying down, Kya told him to wake them up if he needed some company. The next morning, she was awoken by Korra's sudden return to the physical world.

Harmonic Convergence

The group later returned to Republic City, where Korra attempted to petition President Raiko for aid against Unalaq but was unsuccessful. Kya was soon among those witness to Mako's exoneration and release.

Kya heals Jinora

Kya used her healing abilities to sustain Jinora.

Kya accompanied her brothers and Team Avatar on a battleship provided by Varrick back to the South Pole. During that time, Kya used her healing abilities to sustain Jinora. Upon hearing news of the Southern Water Tribe rebels' defeat, the party arrived at the White Lotus compound, where Kya passed Jinora to Katara's care. They discussed how to break through the Northerner blockade surrounding the Southern spirit portal. Asami came up with a plan for herself, Mako, and Bolin to cause a diversion with a biplane while the others fly into the portal on Oogi. As the party began their assault, the Northern army was revealed to be supported by dark spirits, who attacked Oogi, weighing him down. Korra and Kya attempted to ward off the dark spirits but there were just too many, ultimately leading to Team Avatar's capture. However, Kya remained optimistic, as Bumi had evaded capture, though it didn't fill Tenzin with confidence. He soon stood corrected as Bumi slide into the tent where they were being held and freed them. While Asami returned to the compound with Tonraq, Oogi, Naga and Pabu, the others ventured into the portal. Tenzin, Kya and Bumi split off to find Jinora while Korra and the other fought Unalaq.
Kya senses spiritual energy

Kya meditated in order to find Jinora's spirit.

As the three siblings wandered the Spirit World, Bumi futilely called out for Jinora's spirit. He suggested that they employ his tracking skills, but Kya disproved his plan by pointing out that spirits may not even leave footprints. She instead tried meditating before pointing off to her left, claiming that Jinora was in the direction of the spiritual energy she was sensing, but Bumi refuted that there was spiritual energy in every direction. Tenzin decided they needed a spirit guide, but the scorpion-spider spirit he attempted to recruit was not exactly friendly, chasing the trio off a cliff. Eventually, they started going around in circles before encountering Iroh's spirit, whom they had not seen in forty years. After explaining their dilemma, Iroh gave them cryptic advice, which gave Tenzin insight on how to find Jinora. He brought them back to the scorpion-spider spirit and provoked it, prompting the spirit to capture the siblings and deposit them in the Fog of Lost Souls. As they searched the fog for Jinora, they came across Zhao, who mistook Tenzin for Aang, forcing Kya and Bumi to throw him off. The siblings later tied themselves together to avoid getting lost, but they slowly succumbed to the fog's influence. Bumi became convinced that he was surrounded by cannibals and Kya forgot she even had a family and they both ran off. After Tenzin was able to accept his self-doubts, the fog dissipated and he collected both Jinora and siblings. However, Jinora sensed the destruction of Raava. After passing a light spirit butterfly to guide her father, aunt and uncle out of the Spirit World, she vanished.
Kya and her brothers find Korra, Mako, and Bolin

Kya and her brothers found Korra, Mako, and Bolin unconscious before healing them in spirit water.

Kya and her brothers subsequently returned to the physical world, where they found Korra, Mako, and Bolin unconscious in the snow and carried them back to the Spirit World, where Kya used spirit water to heal them. As Korra lamented her failure to stop Unalaq and Vaatu from fusing into the Dark Avatar and protect Raava, Kya encouraged Tenzin to help the Avatar. Tenzin showed Korra the Tree of Time, where she manifested her own spirit, which grew to a gigantic size and vanished through the combined spirit portal. However, dark spirits converged on the tree to attack Korra's body, forcing the party to defend her. Despite the help of Desna and Eska, the group was overwhelmed and forced into the tree's hollow. However, Korra's spirit later returned, along with Raava and Jinora, causing the dark spirits to vanish in a bright light. They were also witness to Korra re-fusing with Raava, recreating the Avatar Spirit.

Upon their return to the physical world, Kya was among those at Southern Water Tribe, where Korra announced the tribe's independence, Tonraq being elected the new chief and a new age where humans and spirits would co-exist.

Post-Harmonic Convergence

Two weeks later, Kya was helping Pema take care of Rohan on Air Temple Island when Ikki called for her father. She hastily followed Tenzin outside to find out what the problem was, though when Bumi started telling about his ventures with Bum-Ju and claimed he could airbend, she promptly turned to go back inside. During dinner, an irritated Kya refuted Bumi's claim that his napkin moved by pointing out that he had blown on it. However, she looked on in shock when Bumi subsequently airbent.

Kya feels changes in Bumi's aura

Attempting to explain his airbending abilities, Kya told Bumi that she had felt changes in his aura since Harmonic Convergence.

The next day, Kya watched as Bumi tried unsuccessfully to bend on command. While Korra, Tenzin, and Ikki mused over possible reasons for the revelation, Kya told her oldest brother that she had been feeling changes in his aura since Harmonic Convergence, though was annoyed when he snapped at her for not telling him earlier.

After reports spread of airbenders appearing throughout the Earth Kingdom, Kya watched as Asami landed a Future Industries airship on the island in order to take Tenzin, Bumi, Jinora, and the rest of Team Avatar to Ba Sing Se. She announced that she would remain on the island with Pema and happily picked up Rohan, asking him if he was excited to spend time with her while jiggling up and down. Dishearted when he threw up on her, she used her waterbending to remove the mess off her clothes, while Pema stated that Rohan liked her. When Ikki and Meelo complained about the unfairness that they needed to stay on the island while Jinora was allowed to accompany the group to Ba Sing Se, Kya defused the tension by telling them that they were needed on the island to provide guidance to new airbenders around the city. She waved goodbye as the group departed on the airship.

Some days later, Kya was conversing with Pema when Ikki and Meelo came into the dining hall to show two new airbenders around the premises. Later that day, Kya approached Meelo training the new airbenders, including Yorru, at the airbending gates to announce that Tenzin had found other airbenders and requested for them to meet at the Northern Air Temple to commence formal training. She was visibly confused when Yorru inquired whether the Avatar would join them, replying that Korra decided to separate from Tenzin during their travels.

Kya pursues Zaheer

After realizing Yorru's identity, Kya pursued the airbender with her waterbending.

As night fell, Kya found Ikki talking with Yorru in Tenzin's study. Suspicious of the stranger, she encouraged her niece to head to bed before questioning Yorru, remarking that he had extensive knowledge of the Air Nomads for a new recruit. Soon after, Kya realized that Yorru was in fact Zaheer in disguise and attacked him with ice bullets, which he swiftly deflected using Tenzin's airbender staff. As Zaheer attempted to fly away, Kya called for reinforcements and used a water tentacle to grab and ground Zaheer, whom she subsequently attempted to trap in ice, albeit unsuccessfully. To prevent his escape, Kya conjured a small wave to attack Zaheer, who knocked her down with an air blast. Two firebending sentries attempted to aid Kya, who tried once more to subdue Zaheer using a pressurized water drill, which the airbender evaded before retaliating with an air bullet from his staff and fleeing the scene.

Kya managed to recover and accompanied her family and the new airbenders to the Northern Air Temple, where she informed Tenzin of her clash with Zaheer and that the criminal was in possession of the locket of Guru Laghima, though could not pronounce his name. She remarked that she could not keep all the gurus straight, but did remember one story about the one who never ate, calling that particular story boring.

Ambush on the Northern Air Temple

Kya was meditating with Opal and the other new female airbenders when Bumi suddenly came bursting through the doors, saying that Zaheer had arrived at the temple and that they needed to evacuate immediately. Before they could reach the bison stables, however, Kya and the others were forced to stop and comply with the Red Lotus' orders when Ming-Hua had captured Opal and was threatening to kill her. Rounded up in one of the temple's courtyards, Kya comfortingly held Opal while Zaheer explained what they were doing there. After Tenzin blew back Zaheer, Ming-Hua, and Ghazan, Kya was asked to fight alongside her brothers in an attempt to give the others time to flee the temple.

Bumi holding on

Overpowered by their opponents, Kya and Bumi were pushed off the temple's balcony, forced to hang on for their lives.

The two waterbenders faced off, trading several blows. Kya managed to briefly get the upper hand when she blasted Ming-Hua off the temple's balcony, though the situation turned on her when the armless bender used the water of Kya's attack to create six water arms as opposed to her regular two. Overwhelmed by the extra attack force, Kya was pushed back into the temple, where she ended up back to back with Bumi, both panting heavily. Although now fighting together, the siblings were forced on the balcony themselves now under a barrage of water, earth, and lava. They were eventually tossed over by an earth pillar attack. Kya was saved from plummeting to her death by Bumi, who had used his airbending to bring them close enough to the ledge to find a handhold. However, their new situation brought them directly into the line of sight of P'Li. Realizing they were a perfect target for the combustionbender, Kya urged her brother to let go, reasoning that they might as well risk the fall against certain death. Tumbling down through trees and over rocks, the siblings eventually came to a halt on a mountain path, where they remained unconscious, though alive.

Kya and Bumi were found by the Red Lotus and taken to a cave-complex a few miles away from the temple along with the rest of the temple's inhabitants, where they were all shackled to the floor by their wrists. After Team Avatar burst through the wall and rescued them, she was hoisted up and supported by two airbenders to make it outside, where she was placed against a rock, a position from which she could spectate the battle between Korra and Zaheer.

Kya returned home with everyone, where she received proper care. Two weeks later, although still leaning heavily on a crutch for support, she witnessed the anointment ceremony of Jinora as she had received her airbending mastery tattoos.

After the ceremony, Kya returned to the Southern Water Tribe together with Korra, Tonraq, and Senna.


Kya has a personality somewhere between those of her two brothers: she can be serious and responsible at times, but enjoys joking around and teasing others as well. According to Katara, Kya was rambunctious as a child. She retains a cool and clear head during times of distress, but around her brothers she can become "as unpredictable as a raging river".


Kya pulls Zaheer down

Kya was able to use a water tentacle to grab Zaheer in mid-air and pull him down.

Having been trained by her mother, Kya is proficient in the use of waterbending, particularly at the art of healing. She further honed her abilities during her travels around the world, becoming a renowned healer in her own right. Her abilities allowed her to keep Jinora's energy circulating despite the absence of the young airbender's spirit from her body as well as heal Korra, Mako, and Bolin simultaneously using spirit water.

In addition to her healing, Kya is proficient in combative waterbending, demonstrating versatility and resourcefulness during battle and a mastery of several high level techniques, including water tendrils, water gimbals, pressurized water drills, and ice bullets. She has been known to use a water skin in combat and was able to fend off multiple dark spirits with a limited supply of water. Her skills also allowed her to stand her own against powerful benders such as Zaheer and Ming-Hua, both of whom she managed to subdue briefly.