Lin Beifong is the Chief of Police of the Republic City Police Department, the daughter of Toph Beifong and Kanto, and the older half sister of Suyin Beifong. Although her mother taught Avatar Korra's previous incarnation how to earthbend, Lin displayed no affection toward her when they first met. However, Lin's feelings toward the young Avatar changed when Amon and his Equalists made their public appearance and openly challenged the benders of the world. Lin is brave, loyal, and willing to sacrifice herself in order to do what she believes is right.
Born to Toph Beifong and Kanto two decades after the Hundred Year War, Lin inherited the earthbending prowess of her mother and eventually mastered the art and two of its sub-skills, metalbending and seismic sense. Due to Toph's childhood being one of constant restriction, she gave Lin and her half-sister, Suyin, much more freedom, though she did not divulge to them their respective fathers' identities, which was something that would plague Lin while growing up. Toph's carefree parenting eventually led Lin and Suyin to competing for her attention. Lin later followed in her mother's footsteps and joined the Metalbending Police Force.
After joining the Republic City Police Force, Lin came home one day in 138 AG, to notice Suyin skipping school and hanging out with her suspicious friends. Upon confronting her about it, she was harshly told by Suyin that it was none of her business. Lin stopped her from leaving and told her she was ruining her life, prompting her half-sister to retort by saying that she at least had a life before leaving behind a fuming Lin.
Sometime in 142 AG, Lin intercepted a getaway car from a robbery. The suspects proved to be Suyin's friends, who were members of the Terra Triad. She was surprised to learn that Suyin was the getaway driver. Lin expressed her anger over her sister's involvement with the Terra Triad. Although Suyin insisted that she only drove the getaway car as a favor, Lin remained unconvinced and threatened her as she began to walk away from the scene. After Suyin dismissed her, Lin tried to apprehend her by snagging her wrist with a cable. While trying to stop Suyin running away, her line was cut by her exasperated sibling, resulting in it snapping back and scarring Lin's face. The two sisters were later brought in front of their mother at her police office, where both were reprimanded. Lin refused to accept the blame because Suyin was running around with criminals. At her mother's request, Lin turned over the arrest report, but watched in shock as Toph tore it, believing the incident could not be covered up. The young officer was angered, especially at the reasoning that Toph, being chief, could not have a daughter in jail, taking it as a sign that her sister could do what she wanted. Lin saw this event as the reason why Toph retired from the police force a year later; Toph supposedly being guilt-ridden of her actions and thus refusing to forgive her half-sister for not taking responsibility. This belief influenced Lin to refuse talking to Suyin, even after Suyin and Toph reconciled with each other many years later. In 154 AG, Lin and Toph ceased communicating with each other and never spoke again until twenty years later. While Suyin later founded the Metal Clan, Lin rose through the ranks of the police force to eventually become Republic City's Chief of Police.
As her mother was friends with Avatar Aang, Lin and Tenzin had known each other since childhood and according to Tenzin, she got along "famously" with his father. Earlier in her life, she dated Tenzin, but the two eventually drifted apart, as they had different goals in life, and the relationship ended after Pema confessed her love for the airbender. Angered, Lin wreaked havoc on Air Temple Island and unsuccessfully attempted to throw Pema in jail.
In 158 AG, following the first kidnapping attempt of Avatar Korra, Lin collaborated with the Order of the White Lotus in interrogating the Avatar's would-be captors, led by Zaheer. However, none of them divulged information regarding their motives.
When Korra arrived in Republic City, she was subsequently arrested and brought before Chief Lin Beifong at the city jail on charges of destruction of private and city property after a skirmish with three Triple Threat gangsters. The two had a conversation in which Lin explained that she held no favoritism toward the young Avatar despite the fact that her mother and Aang were friends. When Tenzin arrived, Lin begrudgingly agreed to drop the charges against Korra, though made it clear that she wanted the Avatar "out of [her] city". The next day, the Chief attended a press conference during which Korra made her first public appearance as the Avatar in Republic City. At that time, the new Avatar was also asked if she would be working with Chief Beifong, a question to which she did not reply.
Lin later encountered Korra again at a party hosted by Councilman Tarrlok, where she remained unimpressed with the Avatar, stating that Korra had done absolutely nothing to deserve the city's praise.
Several nights before the pro-bending championship match, Amon hijacked the radio broadcast and threatened that if the game was not canceled, the Equalists would unleash an attack on the arena.
Shortly after this announcement, the United Republic Council was in favor of closing the arena for the sake of public safety, despite Korra, Bolin, and Mako's pleading. Lin, however, entered City Hall and, albeit reluctantly, agreed with Korra and demanded that the Council show some backbone. In exchange for keeping the arena open, the Chief agreed to provide heavy security for the event. This agreement convinced Tarrlok and the rest of the Council to leave the arena open. Tenzin encountered Lin later and offered to provide her protection during the event, but she demanded that she not be babysat, insisting she could take care of herself. Korra approached Lin and expressed her gratitude to Lin for agreeing with her in the Council meeting, however, she ignored the Avatar's thanks.
Lin proceeded to establish tight security for the event, and finally agreed to bury an old hatchet and work together with Tenzin. Her officers continued checking and rechecking the arena for any signs of anything suspicious, and eventually decided it was clear.
Lin later met up with Tenzin and the two watched the match together. As Tenzin became enraged about the Wolfbats' blatant disregard of the rules, Lin became amused, claiming that she did not think he would know the rules of pro-bending. The two exchanged some conversation during the match as the Wolfbats won a controversial victory, mostly after Korra won her tie-breaker match with Tahno. Lin became somewhat impressed, remarking that she could not believe that the sweet-tempered Aang was reincarnated into Korra, whom she described to be "tough as nails". Tenzin commented that Korra reminded him of Lin at that age and that he believed they would get along if she would give her a chance.
Despite Lin's maximum security, the Equalists formulated a plan and her preparations were rendered useless. Due to the fact that the metalbending cops' armor was impervious to an attack by chi blocking, the Equalists had developed other means of entering and attacking the arena. After the match, the Equalists furtively attacked Tenzin and Lin withelectrified gloves, rendering them unconscious.
Amon appeared at the center of arena and made a speech about the Equalist movement; he subsequently attempted to leave through the pro-bending arena's ceiling. Korra attempted to pursue them and used waterbending to give herself a boost to the ceiling. However, she came up short, and Lin used one of her metal cables to successfully boost Korra up to the ceiling.
Lin soon joined the Avatar on the roof and attempted to fight the Lieutenant and other Equalists. The metalbender was stunned again by the Lieutenant, but managed to recover and continued to fight alongside the young Avatar. Lin attached herself onto the Equalist blimp, and was close to capturing Amon, however, at exactly the same moment, Korra fell through the Pro-bending Arena's glass ceiling. The chief was left making the hard decision between possibly capturing Amon, or saving Korra's life, and in a selfless act Lin chose the latter. Korra thanked the metalbender for saving her life. Tenzin, Lin, and the Avatar discussed that Amon had gotten the better of them on that night, and Tenzin declared that this was the beginning of a war.
After the Equalist attack, Lin received notoriety from the public for failing to capture Amon. Councilman Tarrlok even proposed in a press conference that she be replaced as the Chief of Police. Lin began conducting numerous investigations with Tenzin, interrogating the witnesses of the incident in the arena. She later received intelligence thatCabbage Corp had manufactured the Equalist weaponry, so the Metalbending Police Force proceeded to shut down the company and arrest the owner.
When Lin and Tenzin were alerted by Korra of a possible connection between Hiroshi Sato and the Equalists, the metalbender at first doubted about its veracity, but agreed with Tenzin that he would have both the means and the motive. The Chief and the airbender went to the Sato estate to question him further. The businessman excused his guilt, claiming it was all a simple misunderstanding; he also welcomed Lin's officers to search his factories. However, Lin and her men were not able to find any substantial evidence to incriminate Sato.
As the investigation came to an end, a worker in the factory slipped Korra a note telling her to meet him underneath theSilk Road Bridge. Korra, Lin, and Tenzin met the worker, who explained that Sato was an Equalist and that he had indeed manufactured the weapons used during the arena attack. The worker also revealed that Sato was preparing to launch a new, more powerful weapon, which he was making in a secret factory underneath his mansion.
Lin, Korra, and Tenzin, escorted by some metalbending officers, conducted a second search of the Sato estate, and discovered a massive factory with Equalist propaganda and several weapons, including new, massive robot-like machines,mecha tanks. However, they soon realized they had been lured into a trap as Hiroshi Sato sealed the factory off, and began to fight Lin, Korra, Tenzin, and the officers with the new machines. While the group was able to fend off Sato, he and the Equalists eventually overpowered the benders and rendered them unconscious. Hiroshi ordered his men to bind everyone and bring them to Amon.
Meanwhile, Mako and Bolin entered the factory and attempted to carry Korra, Tenzin, and Lin to the surface; however, Hiroshi soon discovered them and prepared to attack the brothers. They were saved by the appearance of Asami, who had also made her way to the factory. After a brief conversation with her father, Asami used an electrified glove to knock out Hiroshi and the Lieutenant, giving time for everyone, herself included, to escape via airship. However, they were forced to leave Lin's officers behind as they could not carry them, and the Equalists had already begun to load them into the trucks.
While on the airship heading back to the city, Lin, still in pain from the attack, told Tenzin that she feared for the fate of her men and, since she had failed twice as police chief, was planning to turn in her resignation in the morning. Tenzin told her to not give up the fight, but the metalbender stated she was resigning so that she could find her men and take down Amon her way: outside of the law.
Lin officially presented her resignation as chief the next morning and turned her position over to Saikhan.
While Lin was in the hospital recovering from her injuries, Saikhan had taken over as the Chief of Police, with Tarrlok developing an increased influence over the new chief. In this time, Tarrlok unjustly arrested a crowd of nonbenders, as well as Mako, Bolin, and Asami.
Some days later, Lin awoke to a radio broadcast announcing that Korra had been kidnapped by the Equalists. She went to the prison and quickly freed Asami, Mako, and Bolin. Tenzin soon joined the group, and they went to search for Korra and Lin's captured men. Uncovering a network of tunnels under the city, the four, including Tenzin, discovered and infiltrated the Equalist hideout. Lin also found the officers who she was forced to abandon underneath Hiroshi Sato's mansion; however, once she discovered that Amon had already taken their bending away, she expressed regret and apologized for arriving too late. Several minutes later, a chi blocker they had captured told them under duress that the Equalists had never kidnapped Korra and that Tarrlok had been lying. With the help of Lin's earthbending and metalbending, they escaped from their pursuers via tram, the group making its way out of the underground tunnels to the surface. From there, they traveled toward City Hall to confront Tarrlok.
Once they arrived, the group challenged Tarrlok's story of what had happened the previous night, telling him they knew he was lying and had Korra. His assistant revealed that he was a bloodbender, and he had, in fact, kidnapped the Avatar. Lin and Tenzin readied themselves for combat, but Tarrlok knocked the entire group unconscious by bloodbending them. After they woke up, they resumed their search for Korra.
Later, when Lin and the others heard Naga howl, they traveled to the source of the sound and found the polar bear dogwith Korra on her back. Lin attempted to find out from Korra where Tarrlok was, but Mako pushed her aside, demanding that they all gave Korra some space.
After Tenzin arrived, Lin stayed with his family and before the airbender had to leave for an important Council meeting, he asked Lin to look after his wife and children, to which she agreed. Pema arrived shortly afterward and handed her Meelo, stating that he needed a wash, much to Lin's displeasure. After Tenzin left to meet with the other council members, sounds of explosions made it clear that Republic City was under attack, prompting Lin to order the family to go inside. When the Equalists arrived on the island, she tried to defend herself, but was electrified. Jinora, Ikki, and Meelo came to her rescue and defeated the group of attackers in a small battle with surprising ease. As more airships were heading toward the island, Tenzin decided to take his family to a safer location away from Republic City.
Lin knew the family would need protection and accompanied them, taking it upon herself to protect the last airbenders in existence. As she and Tenzin's family fled, two Equalist airships pursued them. After tearing up the net launched by one of the airships, Lin made the difficult decision to attack the aircraft, telling Tenzin not to turn back, no matter what happened to her. Using the broken net's cable, she jumped off of Oogi and climbed atop the airship using her metal wires. Once on top, she ripped a hole in the metal and tore the top of the airship in two. She jumped to the second one to do the same, but was ambushed by Equalists and knocked out with electrified bolas.
Following the capture of the metalbender, the lone Equalist airship turned back and stopped pursuing Tenzin and his family. Lin's sacrifice prompted Meelo to declare her his hero, a statement with which Tenzin solemnly agreed.
Lin was brought back to Air Temple Island to face Amon. He inquired about Korra's whereabouts, telling her that if she complied, he would not remove her bending. Lin, tied up and defenseless, chose to remain silent and willingly sacrificed her bending in order to protect the Avatar. Amon removed her bending and she collapsed to the ground.
Despite losing her bending, Lin accompanied Team Avatar throughout Amon's conquest. After Amon was outed as a bender, Lin traveled with Team Avatar and Tenzin's family to the Southern Water Tribe compound, where Korra hoped Katara would be able to restore her bending. When Katara said she was unable to restore Korra's bending, Lin grievingly remarked that Katara, the best healer in the world, must be able to do something, as otherwise Amon's damage could never be undone. However, when Korra ran away on Naga, she was visited by Aang's spirit, who restored her bending through energybending. Later, Korra used energybending to restore Lin's earthbending, substantiated when Lin raised a number of boulders surrounding their location. Afterward, she thanked Korra for restoring her bending. Some time after she returned to Republic City, she was reinstated as Chief of Police. Due to Mako's good work in busting triads, Lin believed he could make it to detective.
Like her renowned mother, Lin has mastered earthbending to a similar level. She is equally proficient in the traditional Hung Gar earthbending style and her mother's self-taught Chu Gar Praying Mantis style. She is able to easily elevate multiple large boulders simultaneously, as well as launch herself high up into the air.
Lin has also demonstrated a great mastery over the Seismic Sense technique, which allows her to detect the layout of the surrounding area and the people within it with great accuracy and detail. Thus, she is easily able to locate subterranean structures, as well as determine with accuracy who is within the general vicinity. For example, while on the hunt for her captured officers, she was able to pinpoint their presence within an Equalist hideout, but also perceive that Korra was absent. She could also sense the mechanism of a locked door without physically perceiving it in order to open it with her bending. Like Toph, Lin's ability is limited without direct skin contact, requiring her to either use her hands or retract the soles on her boots.
As the chief of the Metalbending Police Force, Lin is especially proficient in the specialized art of metalbending. She is able to rip metal beams or floors from their bearings and single-handedly tear apart an airship's metal hull. For more general use, Lin uses her standard retractable metal cables, which are highly versatile in battle. With them, she is able to perform considerable feats of acrobatics, easily maneuvering around cavernous locations, such as the Pro-bending Arena. She can also fashion them as wrist blades for close-quarters combat. Lin has also performed intricate and otherwise delicate metal bending as well, from unlocking metal handcuffs from a distance to wrapping her armor around herself, and even closing up Bolin's zipper.Despite all this, her mother, Toph, did not believe Lin picked up all the specifics of metalbending.
|Republic City Police Department|
|Metalbender Officer • Mako • Saikhan • Officer Song|
|The New Team Avatar|
|Mako • Bolin • Asami Sato • Toph Bei Fong • Master Katara of the Water Tribe • Master Tenzin • Opal Bei Fong • Jinora • Meelo • Ikki • Fire Lord Zuko • Fire Lord Iroh|