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Earthbender Earth Kingdom emblem

Chen Lai was the leader of Linsho's "Restorationists", a militant group of decolonization activists. Originally a poor fisher of Earth Kingdom descent, she mostly tried to get by without raising the attention of the Fire Nation rulers of her hometown. After the Hundred Year War, the Harmony Restoration Movement granted Chen Lai the hope that her life could finally be better, only for the movement to collapse. This event finally radicalized Chen Lai, and she mobilized a militia of dicontent Earth Kingdom natives who demand that valuable, Fire Nation colonist-owned private property in Linsho should be handed over to the community. In the process, she became the main opponent of Yeoh's pro-Fire Nation "Loyalists".[1]


Chen Lai was born and grew up in Linsho, a Fire Nation colony in former Earth Kingdom lands.[1] She also had a sister, Ziping, who became the owner of Linsho's tea house.[2] Though she was an earthbender, Chen Lai chose not to train the bending art and instead focused on living a quiet life as a fisher. Even though the local fisheries were owned by Fire Nation colonists who treated and paid their workers poorly, Chen Lai found joy in spending time with her friends on the sea and by attending the yearly Squid Ink Festivals. Despite her rather hard life, she was content as long as she avoided the attention of their Fire Nation overlords.[1] At one point, she had a son, Ge, but her partner left her. As a single mother, she was loving but also overprotective which eventually caused a rift to develop between Chen Lai and Ge.[3]

Chen Lai's life changed when the Fire Nation lost the Hundred Year War in 100 AG, as this resulted in the Harmony Restoration Movement which was supposed to return the Fire Nation colonies to Earth Kingdom rule. For the first time of her life, she realized that her life and the lives of her family as well as friends could be better, as a radical decolonization would mean the transfer of valuable properities and lands to poor Earth Kingdom natives. Yet her hopes were dashed as the Harmony Restoration Movement was discontinued in 101 AG and replaced with a less radical programme, meaning that the situation in Linsho barely changed. This development kickstarted Chen Lai's radicalization: After seeing another path for her community for the first time, she could no longer accept things as they were, and thus secretly created a group of like-minded locals who demanded the colonist-owned Blue Sky Fisheries to be transferred to community control.[1]

As years passed and little changed despite her faction's protests, Chen Lai's group became increasingly frustrated and extreme in their demands. They became known as the "Restorationists" and started to openly call for the removal of all colonists from Linsho. In doing so, they became the opponents of the pro-Fire Nation "Loyalists", a militant group led by Yeoh.[1] Meanwhile, Chen Lai's private life also suffered, as her relationship with Ge further cooled until her son left Linsho after a heated dispute with his mother.[1][3] Despite this, she was determined to continue her activism, believing that her actions paved the way for a better future for all Earth Kingdom natives, including Ge.[1]


Originally a downtrodden person who tried to just make the best with what she had, Chen Lai experienced a revelation due to the Harmony Restoration Movement. In the process, she became hopeful for a new kind of system in Linsho. This hope ultimately developed into a radical belief in equality for Earth Kingdom natives and hostility toward Fire Nation colonists, many of whom had exploited her community.[1] Despite her hard stance toward Fire Nation colonists, Chen Lai was not a racist; her lingering anger prevented her from realizing that many colonists were just as poor as their Earth Kingdom neighbors.[4]

She was also a devoted mother, but her overprotectiveness caused a rift with her son Ge. Chen Lai felt guilty over this development, but ultimately believed that her activism would also benefit her estranged son.[1][3]


Though not trained in earthbending martial arts, Chen Lai was capable of creating an earth armor and some basic attack moves. Her main strength was her charisma, as she rallied many of Linsho's inhabitants to her cause.[1]



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