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-The dust settles, and both Gordie and Melony's Pokémon are still standing.-
Melony: Eiscue, use Surf!
Gordie: Uh oh! Stonjourner, use Rock Tomb on yourself!
Evelyn: Mirai, use Psychic on yourself!
-Can it be implied that Ian and Evelyn are still floating in midair? Anyways, Mirai's eyes glow pink as she lifts herself into the air telekinetically to try and avoid the wave that Melony's Eiscue conjures up. Gordie's Stonjourner stomps the ground and brings up a wall of stone to surround it and hunkers down, shielding himself against the wave. Unfortunately, the wave is a pretty big one that hits Yuki, Mirai, Ian and Evelyn despite the fact that they are levitating.-
Evelyn, Yuki, Mirai and I: -surprised- BLARGLRAHHHARHRARAHRHAJRJAKRLALLRAABlblblblblbl-!
-Melony just laughs as her challengers get soaked by the wave.-
Melony: What's the matter, you two? You look a little washed up.
Me: It'll take more than that to drown OUR ambitions!
Evelyn: Yeah! And besides, I'm not that kind of witch!
Yuki: <I'll be okay, Ian-sama... Dakedo... Chotto tsukareta.>Translation However... I am a little tired.
Me: Thank you, Yuki-sama. Return for now.
-Ian calls Yuki back to her Poké Ball, taking another Poké Ball off his belt as he does so.-
Me: Ritchie, come on out!
-Ian throws the Poké Ball and from it jumps Ritchie, Ian's Piplup!-
Melony: Aha... I see you have a little penguin pal of your own.
Me: That's right.
Me: Go for it, Dio!
Evelyn: We thought it would be Jagger, but it was HIM, DIO!
Evelyn: Ian and I were planning on just doing whatever for this battle.
Me: Y'know, so we can REALLY put on a show!
-Evelyn looks around her, taking in the aura of the Tangle, even though she's aware that it's all in Hoops' mind. She then sees Hoops, alive and well, with both of their arms. She smiles and waves at Hoops.-
Evelyn: Sure. I'd love to join you.
-Evelyn sits next to Hoops.-
Sophie: I understand... But rest assured, when I find them, I will bring them to you.
-Evelyn climbs down the tree to investigate what the others saw.-
Evelyn: A bag...
-Ian then falls out of said tree.-
Me: ...of confetti?
Evelyn and I: What will we need it for?
-Krypton smirks as the Conkeldurr rushes in for a Slam attack, and then swiftly moves to the side with his foot sticking out in front of Conkeldurr.-
Edited by AnimeboyIanpower on Sep 24th 2021 at 11:49:21 AM
Old house, huh? Considering what we're planning on doing, I suppose that's fitting.
Alright then, show us the way.
Jacqueline comes out from behind the counter.
"Make sure to follow close by me, the way can get kinda twisty."
She flips the open sign on the door to closed and heads out.
The way is in fact very twisty. Jacqueline goes off the main path pretty early and seems to be guiding herself mostly by various trail markers that are hard to see in the mushroom-light. Every so often she looks back to make sure the other two are still with her.
As the group presumably gets closer to their destination, Tagg might be able to hear little whispers of monese.
<They're not Aislinn..>
<No, I've seen the purple one before. She's come to play hasn't she?>
<Their thoughts are making my head hurt...>
Hattena and Hattrem seem to appear just on the edge of his vision, but if he looks they won't be there.
Eventually they round a bend and come to a clearing. Off to the side is a slightly shabby looking wooden house with a small stream running by it. The house is surrounded by a garden, now overgrown. A small crack in the trees overhead provides just enough light to illuminate the area. Aislinn is nowhere to be seen.
Keep your emotions in check, we have company with us in these woods.
No one's been here for a while, it seems, apart from her and I assume you and the local mons.
Daydre just nods in response.
Jacqueline: "Yeah. It was mainly us three coming and going for a long time- me, Aislinn, and her mom that is. Aislinn had to move in with me for.. reasons, so this area's not been properly lived in for a while."
Jacqueline looks around.
Jacqueline: "Ais? You there?"
When she gets no response she starts toward the back of the house.
Jacqueline: "Ah- you guys stay here for a bit. I'll be right back."
And off she goes.
-To Daydre as Jaqueline rounds the corner and is out of earshot-
I could've sensed her out but that just felt... rude.
And I don't feel like probably getting mobbed by Hatenna and Hattrem a second time.
Daydre: "Oh, right. It still impresses me how far your ability reaches."
A moment later Jacqueline comes back.
Jacqueline: "Hm, she wasn't there. Wonder where she could-"
Tagg will probably sense Aislinn's Aura moving through the trees above them, and in the split second it takes Jacqueline to finish her sentence Aislinn drops down behind them in a shower of leaves.
Aislinn: "Oh, it's you.. three?"
She looks the group over, eyes sticking on Daydre.
Aislinn: "Well, you're not one I was expecting to see."
We checked out Morata's mansion like you asked, and I have questions of my own before we attempt the heist, but before we start with that, well...
-Gesturing to the person in question-
I'll let Daydre say it since this family matter's more your business than mine.
Aislinn: "Family matter...?"
Daydre sucks in her lips.
Daydre: "Okay so uh... We're uh... We may be related?"
Aislinn: (smiling, but clearly disbelieving) "What?"
Daydre: "My mom told me that we have relatives in Galar, and that their last name was something close to ours and that our branches of the family split over some artifact and everything I know about you goes along with that and Tagg said something about our auras-"
Daydre stops herself and waits to see how Aislinn will react to that.
Her expression is as hard to decipher as ever but she seems to be less in disbelief than before.
Aislinn: "I suppose that isn't.. the most unrealistic thing I've ever heard but. What exactly am I supposed to do with this information?"
"...I'm not actually sure."
"But it.. I feel like this is somewhat my responsibility too? And I want to help out? And I may be wondering what the hell is up with that mask and what our family is doing with it"
I should probably preface this by saying that I would've done this anyway even if you didn't have a familial connection to a friend of mine, but since you do it'd only be fair that I got them in the loop, I haven't told the rest of our group what we've been up to. I also wasn't sure how you might react, but it seems you're familiar with Aurics, which tracks with the amount of Hatenna surrounding us.
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of the layout, there were two things I noticed. One was that the mask seems very much alive with an Aura of it's own, was it like that before, or is it news to you too?
The other was that there weren't really any guards I could see, surprising when dealing with some rich jerk, but there was one person there who seemed to be their servant. Were they the one who injured you? If so, we need to know as much about them as possible, because depending on the circumstances, this could be much bigger than just a stolen mask. The group they're probably running from, comparing Morata to them is like comparing a campfire to Mt. Chimney.
Edited by rmctagg09 on Sep 25th 2021 at 3:13:03 PM
-there's a horrified, fishy gasp at the person who isn't Daydre's...non-Daydre suggestion-
-flatfish eyes dart to one ally, then another-
That One Stunfisk: <...that's a Pokémon in disguise as a human!>
-behind that gasp are smaller, smugger gasps-
Another Stunfisk: <Our communications are infiltrated!>
Other Other Stunfisk: <Did you hear how they spoke in Galaran? They're from across the pond!>
That One Stunfisk: -riled-up- <Let's exercise our instinct to ostracize unusual behavior! Get 'em!!>
-MONARCH blows the roof off-
-it's raining Stunfisk (hallelujah)-
-yeahhh, above a certain size, a single-target attack's target can singly target a group-
-or a building-
Guard: -in [Italian]- I'm not paid enough to deal with this shit.
-she turns to leave through the door, and finds the way barred by refrigerators-
Grunt: -similarly- Get back here, you! If this mess reaches the higher-ups, the Warehouse will have our heads!
-the guard takes looks at her coworker, sighs vaguely, and lets the fish take her-
-so, fun fact-
Grunt: -a wriggling Remoraid between their hands- Me next.
-Obscura—Dark Obscura specifically—strengthens with emotions...which the person who isn't Daydre would know, likely having told someone named Megan who cannot ethically be confirmed nor denied as the J-Team's Megan such themself-
Suiko: -...opens an eye?-
HUD!Vee, Suit!Vee: -to each other, through it- <Hello again.> .3
-it's a mercy that Vaporeon learn Strength-
Suiko: -wiggling toes- ...inertial damping. So useful.
-calling up- Thanks, hon!
-and, finding herself neither cratering the floor nor structurally bisected, Suiko throws up a wave on which to Surf-
-she swings from the whip at high speeds, hurling still-shouting guards out windows on fluid momentum-
-it's raining men (so much less pleasant than the song makes it sound)-
-Ironspine's vanished in all the hubbub, obscured by a mass of Tentacruel—mostly clutching stung tentacles and trying not to eat each other-
Dr. Ironspine: -over comms- <All done. Get our "asses" out of "dodge".>
-two out of three layers of spoofing go down-
Megan: It's cool my insides like being wet :o
-this is someone extremely familiar with the articulation dance, for a lot of similar reasons probably-
Megan: -softly staring...heart exploding (metaphorically)-
-so she responds in the most reassuring way she knows-
Megan: -warm- You're a really cool person. ^_^
Megan: -going red, smiling all lopsided- This goes without saying, but also. I really want to say it, and to make sure you hear it. You're so cool.
-earnest- So anything I can do to make you, like...safe, or comfortable...is absolutely worth it. You're worth it.
-saying words back-
Megan: ...I almost wanna say time is no object, but that sounds too much like it doesn't matter. I'd wanna do this if my days were packed and we had to wait longer.
Megan: -looking up- ...if I knew how to run a forge, I'd make you a sword, or-or a brush. A new tablet, if I could program it. If I had chemistry, I'd make you paints and ink from everything I find.
Megan: ...I've got cosplay and energy instillment and—heh—a reasonable grasp on your aesthetic, I think.
(-her heart-seal is glowing-)
Megan: -smiling, shy- I get it.
-it's so, so rare for Addie to be legitimately caught off-guard-
Addie: You. You've had to have seen—someone drink from a bottle before. Right?
Logan: Addie. Breathe.
Addie: -nope- Your Trainer drinks Gatrade constantly, you—you're a security system, and—
Logan: In. Out. Like you wouldn't flaunt a norm at the earliest opportunity.
Addie: -face placid, shrieking internally- This is not a social convention!!
Logan: -similarly placid, smiling- "Fascinating" is one way to put it.
-...well, more teasing than simply calm-
Logan: -exhale- ...oh good, you believe in magic. That conversation always sucks otheriwse.
-they watch the Percy-Apple interaction with a smile reserved for the cutest of things-
Logan: -laughing, a bit strained- Yeah, "gaslight" is a term for a reason! Not, like…"psilight."
Addie: -chirp, showing Aware how to rub static from the sock, at least-
-memories being more color-in-the-space-between-the-lines than many know (or at least would like to admit)...goes acknowledged-
Logan: -lighter- The thought of a personality quiz, though. Like, you end up in— -snickers- —a rainbow void of all genetics ever, and there's a voice asking:
Logan: -affecting an inexplicably catlike tone- "Do you get the feeling that you've slowed down lately?" No! "Do you think you're cool?" "Do you laugh a lot?" "What will you do when the aliens arrive?"
Logan: And all that means...that means...uh...
Stormchaser's Ceiling Lights: -hum-
Logan: -faint- I think I cheated on the personality quiz.
-it is a mess, isn't it?-
-from the top:-
Molybdenum: -to Ever- ~Yeah no maybe your tactics just suck! Maybe pick better fights, or at least for people who are less bad.~
Molybdenum: -to Ephemera- ~Yeah, she wanted to fight. You're going to do better against her than you'll do against me.~
-Molybdenum knows Ever's mental signature—she spoofs it, and in her rage Ephemera's instinct takes over and her trajectories go wid—ow ow FUCK raw power is right-
-if you're human, just the energy radiating from those stings, even through armor-
Molybdenum: -cutting out every time a Shadow Ball passes between her and Ever- ~I am not going near -fzzt- with an imaginary ten-foot p -sszl- while she's on the warpath, are you insane?~
-she tries cutting the Gordian knot by nudging where Ephemera perceives her to be a bit to the right, degree by degree-
Molybdenum: ~You're not gonna be alive for long if this keeps up! Maybe take the F and find someone to stitch that up before they gotta sew your head back on, geez.~
-she sees Muninn dart off, but decides that that is Ribot's problem, for once-
-Ribot—the liquefied Beheeyem—moves through a Templar with a hole burnt through her face intending to craft a nightmare in flesh to survive just long enough to slay Hiro-
-the introduction of a competitor…-
-throws him a bit off his groove!-
Ribot: -pauses in the middle of deactivating the nerves to the bits that make sound to shoot an eyeless Death Glare-
-he seems to be lining up a shot that'll eject Muninn without shredding anything important, redirecting neural linkages like traffic to open a lane-
Zayna: -in excruciating pain, to Muninn- [[purple~what do you have in mind.~]]
-this Templar's brain moves gratifyingly fast, if nothing else-
Ribot: -steamed- ~This is a trick. He is not one of ours. Permit him entry and he will deny all opportunity for the revenge you seek.~
Ribot: -Zayna's mouth grinning- ~Unless this is your alliance overture, Muninn?~
-Zayna's response could easily be transcribed into language...but perhaps is represented more accurately by the drifting memory of those hideous Templar corpses, made into nothing but shambling weapons for short-term tactical advantage-
-in opposition to knowing (and feeling) that she still is very much aflame down to her soul, if it exists-
-she liked that face-
Zayna: -separating action potentials around Muninn, crackling- ~Talk fast. Think.~
Ribot: -sharp- ~Hold still.~
-she liked Robert the Builder, who last she saw barriers broken and torn nearly in two by a dog bigger than he-
-Hiro takes stock-
Hiro: Don't you see? The circumstances of one's birth—they're a starting position. What you're capable of with the gift of life expands further the more time that passes—that you view continuity as our privilege alone has killed more of yours than those blades.
-heavily- Your punishment? Legacy is not unique to you.
-Adelinde—for a moment—appears distracted fending off...damn, four whole foes, not including Hiro himself, with consummate ease-
-immunity or no, Curry's thrust back into a tree's branches by that strike—Parfait shatters the sword aimed for her with a steely arm before rocket-jumping out of sight—Hiro moves to renew the Flash—-
Litwick: <HIRO, LOOK OUT!>
-a white flame pokes through his shoulder—Hiro leaps back the scant distance necessary to prevent Adelinde's thrust—which goes right through the tree he was hiding behind—from similarly passing into his stomach and out the other side-
-he parries the strike—only a mortal swordsman—and is struck by the irrevocable realization that if he tries to attack her with a sword—do anything but block her, or block her only with that sword—-
-he will die very painfully-
(-he sees Tea's Confusion cost her—she plows headlong into the blade-thicket, her steel-transformation giving out early, and is sliced foreleg to back by the blade aimed for her-)
Tea: - flame sputtering out, yelps-
Hiro: -up a tree- She just hurt my dog.
John: -shivering- <Yeah.>
-in his place, Adelinde's blade(s) may skate harmlessly off a Libero bunny-
-above her, Parfait Flings a paper airplane folded from burning Cleanse Tags—Curry follows up with an Assurance to the face-
-Hiro's burning footprints—he takes that self-evident fact he stated and presses it into the earth, the ground at Adelinde's feet igniting violently-
The Velvet Room
-Pollen just stares, unreassured until the new figures form-
Thespi: -unnerved…?- I am...very glad that I'm just a head.
Suiko: -watches curiously-
-and thus, they appear-
Thespi: -pales—a remarkable feat when the working fluid in your body is essentially pure water-
-Suiko still can't see anyone, move anywhere—but she looks, curious, at Lę Lợi-
Pollen: <Tied to us.>
Thespi: -mouth dry- ...I bet I can guess whose is whose.
Pollen: -flat- <No bet.>
Thespi: I bet—
"I've spent all day climbing mountains, I'm almost starving!"
You reply, maybe about halfway seriously. It's getting to be a long day and you slightly skipped lunch.
-The helmet hides the falling of Gale's face as once again the squad of eight scatters but this time for a far more confirmed Fainting. She's silent as she recalls the Falinks and after a moment to shake off the bad vibes she speaks once more in her performance voice-
You're strong, but I know this is only a minor setback, Lady Luck is on my side after all. Agent, get in here and finish this off.
-Gale sends back out James, who immediately lines up a new Snipe Shot-
Hoops offers Evelyn hobnobs from a packet.
Hoops: Don't worry, this is a mental world, or something, so you don't have to worry about allergies or calories and stuff. Probably.
They take two biscuits and eat them both, like a sandwich that doesn't have any filling in it.
Hoops: You know, it's my birthday in a few weeks. I was kind of looking forward to it. You know, eighteenth birthday, being an adult and stuff. Looks like I might end up missing it. Shame, because I was thinking of hiring a bouncy castle.
Alyesha grinned in response
Alyesha: "Well, then you'll like this~ Have today's special - with recommendation from the cook~"
With that, Alyesha took out the steaming dough out of the improvised oven, putting it on a plate between her and Emer
Alyesha: "Alright, food's ready, have an extra large coulibiac "mountaineer's special"~ Made with rice and [LAMB] as filling and extra rich in calories and carbohydrates to get us through the day~"
And indeed, if emer were to cut open the still steaming brioche, she'd find a more than hearthy filling inside, with enough energy to get her through more than one day.
Edited by Sergey_Smirnov on Sep 25th 2021 at 4:18:42 PM
-Aware continues sucking at the holes they made until they've drained the bottle completely-
Aware: So I guess it's probably not worth it to do it that way. Nobody told me about lungs.
Percy: I didn't really anticipate it ever becoming an issue for you.
Aware: You should've! We'd all be happier!
-they continue playing with the sock, building up a concerning static charge, which they attempt to use to turn Percy's phone on and off-
Aware: (to Addie) You're making a face. What's up?
-while Percy raises their eyebrow at Logan-
Percy: I mean, I'm sure it's someone's science, but it might as well be magic to me. The underpinning principles aren't ones I can follow, and I suspect they'd baffle most physicists too.
-they are observed as they attempt to rouse Apple-A-Day, and the lightning around their face briefly shimmers red-
...So! You cheated on the personality quiz, huh. And now you are not your scalesona. I suppose it raises some hope that I'd survive any attempt at same.
I would love to find someone to stitch my throat back together, unfortunately you are trying to kill me and I'm busy.
-Ephemera's aim starts to drift-
Now, if you stopped this little pageant and left my cat alone, I'd be able to wrap this all up and get out of your hair. It's not my best offer but in my defense I'm bleeding to death.
Oh, I'll sweeten the deal for you.
-Adelinde's smile widens slightly as Tea gets cut-
-now it looks cruel, if only by context-
Adelinde: Hmm. Then we'll see which one of us can effect more change, yes? Me as a living person, and you...
-her swords flicker out as they find their marks or fail to (Pleth: -Detects her way out of being skewered, claws skidding in ground that's been turned from firm soil to dry dust and ash-), replaced by a slash from nowhere at Hiro that he probably can easily dodge, more of a time layaway than anything else-
-it's aimed at the tree holding him up-
You're not talking to your boss right now? Perfect, because I'm going to tell you something about her.
~My alliance overture, yes, but...probably not with you, as much as I do enjoy your company.~
(through the private connection) ~Zayna the Fulminous. My name is Muninn. I am a ten-thousand-year-old archbeing who once held mental power you could not fathom. I have intimate experience with both good and bad decisions, and it tells me that your interests are best served by withdrawing from the field at this juncture.~
~I have lost...a great deal of my kin. You will not serve them by following in their example.~
~Help me fight the system that put you all here to die.~
~I can protect you from Ribot's attempts to puppet you, as well as from your own impending death, but you must take sides, and do it swiftly.~
~This is your moment of leverage.~
You see, she's not quite as perfect as you all seem to think she is. Well, like, she's riddled with flaws, but that's just a natural state of substituting rigidity for real toughness. But there's an actual hole in her performance.
Can you spot it? I'm curious.
Ephemera: -bombarding the trees with Shadow Balls-
-Adelinde slashes the Cleanse Plane in two without looking, hurling the resulting blade towards Parfait, guiding its path after her-
-Pleth dashes in, claws coated in obscura-
Adelinde: -leans out of the way, the slash going wide-
Pleth: (one-liner delivered late for practical reasons) <Block—>
Adelinde: -steps back and around Pleth, her coat flaring out, the Night Slash only barely scraping cloth-
-she spins much faster than Adelinde can step, a claw stabbing for her midsection-
-she's parried. Adelinde doesn't only rely on the blades of her thoughts-
Adelinde: If you insist.
-three blades appear around Pleth's neck and fold in-
-or where her neck was a moment ago. She ducks fast-
Pleth: -makes a break for it, disappearing into the shrinking treeline-
Adelinde: -sends all three blades chasing after her, splitting them up to cut her off-
-she holds up an arm as Curry connects, but her stance is rooted, and she takes a few controlled steps back, unshaken-
-there's a flash of her own-
Nuckelavee: -silently charging through the woods, horn aimed at Curry-
Have you worked it out yet? No?
-the ground under Adelinde heats up-
-she hops slightly-
-the harsh purple light that illuminates the forest fades away into the remaining flames, the dim glow of Ephemera's obscura, and the dancing fairy lights of multiple psychics doing their best-
-lands on a platform as the ground under her turns traitor-
-the flames are dampened by the barrier she's placed. The secondary effects are not-
-she lands gracefully, soot stains on her coat, a few convection burns up and down her-
-her attention is. Focused-
Adelinde: Say hi to your parents from me, Alítheia.
-blades rain from above-
-two of them engage with Hiro as a swordsman, stabbing and parrying from opposite sides-
-one flitters like an arrow, diving in to stab at vitals-
-as she hurls the Real Knife, guiding it home-
She has a hard limit on just how much she can do at once. Many, many blades, but only five separate patterns of psionics at a time. I'd say probably six, because she seems smart enough to leave something in reserve. And then seven total, because controlling her own body counts as an area of focus. When she reaches her cap, she has to dismiss all or most of them before she keeps going.
Maybe that helps you someday. Or right now.
I'm not sure how much, honestly. She's not someone I want to fight either way. But, Molybdenum, if you insist on subtracting from the resources Hiro has available to get him out of this...I'm going to remove you from the equation.
PEFE!Every: Huh. Kind of wish I had that Drakloak with the camera with me.
-she takes her phone out of her coat, handing it off to an Emolga-
PEFE!Every: Alright, go sneak past those cops and take some pictures, okay?
Spark: <Of what?>
PEFE!Every: Enough that I can reconstruct the scene later, mostly.
Spark: <Ooh, I can do that cool panorama thing!>
Spark: <You know, like the big panning shots you can do now?>
PEFE!Every: ...I use this phone for texting and notetaking. I made a call once in December of last year. I don't think it has a panorama function?
Spark: <All phones do.>
PEFE!Every: ...Huh. Well, do your thing.
-Spark scampers off to go take pictures. Pef waits outside the alleyway, looking vaguely bored-
Edited by memyselfandI2 on Sep 25th 2021 at 1:01:10 AM
Olivia: -her voice still across from where the hole is- <Oh! That confetti, it's like... Little pieces of your world touched by my brother's powers. If you can get enough of it you can patch the hole!>
-The girl gives PEF Every a perfectly neutral look-
???: "Were you... Talking to your Emolga just now?"
This post partially written by JG
Owen: "How many times have I done this? 999. I've got to get it right this time, right?"
Odin: "Uh." -reads parenting book- "Don't give up. Bruce Lee and Malcolm Gladwell cannot both be wrong.""
Owen: "But they said different things that have the same thematic resonance but use different units, and both of them can be wrong. It's just that if I fail this one, Bruce will be wrong first. Also Gladwell's theory has come under a lot of fi-"
Odin: -annoyed- "Just keep going!"
Edited by Umbramatic on Sep 25th 2021 at 3:00:22 AM
PEFE!Every: Yeah. Do you not talk to your Pokemon?
-she pets Cytosol-
If you're one of those people who doesn't, I'm probably just going to abandon you here.
Channah: Oh yeah? Cool. -thinks- Uh, I used to stargaze sometimes with my Pokémon as a kid. We used to make a game out of making up new constellations. Uh. Have you been to the Mossdeep Space Center?
Channah: Hm. Well, that's not bad. Not to like. Gatekeep , or anything, but some people out there my brother would want to learn in order to, like, wield more control over their Pokémon, not necessarily to get closer for friendship's sake. How many badges do you have? I ran through the League here last year so if you want tips or something, I might be able to help.
Kamon: -looks down at the confetti- ...Oh. Should we look around for more, then, or will the bag be sufficient?
Ann: -To Olivia- Well that would explain why it looked like bits of forest.
-Has Genmei grab the confetti bag to have it spread over the area-
Yew: -Faints from the Snipe Shot critting before she can form the energy-
Well there goes that strategy... for now, I'll give Gale that one. I have plenty of others.
Alright Hendrix, let's kick it into Overdrive!
Hendrix: -Strums his chest aggressively as electrified soundwaves are sent towards Agent-
Igor: -To the three- As I've already said, these three will assist you on your rehabilitative journey, but you must also gain your true Personas and Pokésonas for the trials ahead.
-With that, the three sub-Personas turn into generic white masks that are absorbed by the three present-
Caroline: -Aggressively- You'd better be listening to the Master's words inmates!
Justine: If you find that they aren't up to your needs, the next time you arrive here we can fuse new Pokésonas for you.
Igor: Now, all that is left for you is to meet with those also seeking rehabilitation like you. With that, we will leave you to your dreams.
-And the area starts getting hazy for the three-
Chiyo: -To Channah- A few times, when my fleeing had me go to Hoenn. Nice place to view the stars, whether by yourself or with a special someone.
Igor clearly didn't see it coming. He trips over. Before landing face-first into the stone floor, however, he transforms into a pidgeot and flies off, circling the schoolchild. He seemed to be preparing an aerial counterattack. But Cassander would have none of that.
Cassander: This is a measurement of brute force, Igor. Land and face him on the ground.
He complies and transforms into the college kid again, crouched in an action movie landing position.
Igor: Well, doc, he's pretty fast. Are you sure you don't want me to adapt a new strategy?
Cassander: I can see that, Igor. Know your place and follow my lead. There'll be time for that later.
Igor nods and re-transforms into a conkledurr. He then prepares for a focus punch.
Cassander was impressed at the feat of speed. Now things were getting real interesting. He turns to his guest.
Cassander: I seldom see raw power and agility like that in any human. It's hardly unknown. I've the misfortune of encountering one who opposed one of the acquisitions I made the previous year as we prepared for this year's crop of experiments. The templars we could produce from him will certainly make all our acquisition jobs easier.
Kim: "Well. Seems like now we've got a penguin-on-penguin battle."
Marnie: "Alright, then! Let's start this battle off! Toxicroak! Hit him with a Toxic!"
(On the sidelines, Freddie's eyes widen.)
Freddie: <O-oh dear... this is bad...>
Toxicroak: (smirks) <Hehehehe... You'll be sure to faint now!>
(He promptly proceeds to open his mouth and shoot out poison from it directly at Dio— who, to the Toxicroak's shock, immediately absorbs it and starts glowing purple.)
Dio: (laughs) <HEH! The joke's on YOU, buddy~! I THRIVE on poison!>
Toxicroak: (horrified) <W-what?! No... y-you can't...>
Dio: <THAT'S RIGHT~!>
Marnie: (realizing) "Oh dear."
Freddie: <O-oh! T-that's right! Dio's got Poison Heal as his ability!>
Jagger: <Well, this battle just got a lot more interesting.>
Elton: <Alright! You show 'em, Dio!>
Braker: "Poison Heal..."
Walter: <That's going to give Dio even more of an advantage.>
Cuddles: <Hey~! Isn't Poison the name of a rock band?>
Walter: <It is.> (beat) <Well. No wonder, then.>
Kim: "Alright, Dio! You know what to do! Hit that Toxicroak with an Earthquake!"
Dio: <Will do! Take THIS, why don't ya! CANNONBALL—!>
(He promptly proceeds to glide up into the air, before spreading his wings and crashing down to the ground. In an instant, the stadium around them begins to shake, and the Toxicroak is promptly thrown around. Kim, Marnie, and the rest of the group are also jostled around by the attack.)
Jagger: <Meh. I can take this.>
Freddie: (almost immediately) <Oh dear— oh dear— nononononono not an Earthquake— I know it's super effective against the Toxicroak but couldn't you have picked a different move...?>
(He promptly gets on the ground and goes fetal. Dio hears him and turns to him sheepishly as he glides back up.)
Dio: <Whoops! Sorry Freddie! That's the only Ground-type move I know right now, so—> (and then his eyes bug out of his skull) <HOLY CRAP! Freddie, d-did you— did you evolve again?!>
Freddie: (still terrified of the Earthquake) <Y-yes, I did- b-but we have far more pertinent things to deal with right now—>
Dio: (delighted) <ALRIGHT—! I'm proud of ya, Freddie!>
Dio: <You're welcome!> (then, to himself) <Now... how's the Toxicroak over there?>
(The answer is soon revealed— he is being thrown around like a rag doll.)
(Braker, Walter, and Cuddles soon find themselves thrown around as well, with Cuddles in particular holding on for dear life.)
Cuddles: <AAAAAH~! EARTHQUAKE—!!>
Walter: <Cuddles, you resist Ground.>
Cuddles: <Oh, yeah!>
Braker: "...oh dear."
Kim: "I see. Well, then." (She turns towards the Hammerlocke castle.) "I suppose we should head inside."
(She turns to face Braker, Walter, and Cuddles.)
Kim: "Braker? Let's head off."
(Braker nods, and he, Walter, and Cuddles proceed to follow Kim into the castle.)
Cuddles: (seeing Genmei grab the bag) <Confetti~ yaaaay~>
Ingrid: "O-oh! Um... I-I'd like that, thank you. I..."
(She takes out her Sinnoh badge case and reveals that she has all 8 badges.)
Frida: (to Channah) <She's in the Hall of FAAAAAME~!!>
-he carries on digging psionics through muscle, secure in the ability of Zayna's neural lightning to expel or impede the intruder-
-it's so, so hard to delude yourself when thinking of a lie burns down past the bone-
-this Muninn isn't burned—at a fundamental level, he must be sincere-
-this pain brooks no argument-
-Hiro murdered them all—the Templar are elite, above him—the School treasures them all—-
-Robert is dead-
-Thanixys is dead-
-the girl who hummed in the break room is dead, her name...lost to charred neuron-
-Ivory is dead, reduced to blackened meat-
-they were dead and their corpses put to work-
-Ribot holds no interest in her preservation—he openly projects intent to allow her expiry by processes that wring more power-
-she is about to die-
-they've sent dozens of Templar to face this man before, and possessed paperwork for dozens more-
-they didn't send Adelinde in before them-
Ribot: -looking up, spinning adrenal sequences- ~Hm?~
Zayna: ~Be quick, dead man.~
-'subtracting', 'equation', 'remove'—these ring somewhere in Molybdenum's brain-
-she locks them away with the appropriate counter-phrase, leaving it at that-
Molybdenum: ~Your cat's trying to kill me. I think I'm justified in messing with her.~
-she watches the field, exchanging what "Molybdenum" looks like in Ephemera's brain with "stalk of grass"-
-the combatants are all shielded by accelerated perception or fearsome reputation or mental fire that...hurts, when she brushes up against it-
(-it's not Dark, she doesn't know how it's keeping her out-)
Molybdenum: -counting Adelinde's constructs- ~...hm.~
-she gathers her nerve-
-no distractions—Parfait is not Hiro's starter for nothing-
-however thin, however sharp—Adelinde's sword is a plane of force-
-Parfait gathers Aura into her fingertips and hammers them into the flats—it shatters before the tip can pierce her heart-
-Tea gathers herself, Teleporting between Nuckelavee and Curry-
-Curry snarls and flips over Tea's bloody back—coming down on Nuckelavee's horn with a heavy axe kick-
Molybdenum: -pained, cognition aflame- ~Hey. Whatever you're doing, now would be a good time.~
-distracted, Hiro steps back too late—Adelinde's slash cuts a long, shallow gouge across his chest-
-Ephemera's Shadow Ball contacts bare heartwood where Adelinde slices branch and trunk—it explodes beneath him, forcing him to tuck and roll for a chance to recover before being skewered-
-but now—no time any more to call for help-
-call armor, raise shields-
Hiro: -hearing Adelinde- ...
-taking painful truths in stride made up the core of his training-
-long before he began to exercise his power, for reasons expected of a child experiencing them-
Hiro: -quiet- They have messages for you, first.
Hiro: Our mother's last words were spent on tactical necessity. A weakness in your stance I see you've corrected.
-his words become a streamer of flame, locking to a Juxtaposed Sword and melting its edge—it bites, but does not bisect-
Hiro: Our father's thanked circumstances that we weren't home.
-another takes the other—bloodstains bloom through Hiro's overshirt, lost in its crimson-
John: <...and they were wrong.>
-Hiro's blood ignites as it meets air—no one is taking samples of his, today-
Hiro: Their Pokémon survive them—those you didn't butcher. A son survives them, or so I hear.
You are a footnote in our history books.
-he raises Scalebane to guard his head, the Skyfall deflected into shoulders and arms and nothing that will stop what he has to say-
Hiro: And so too will I be. Veracity and Virtue Alíthea pursued far worthier pursuits than this.
-the Real Knife thuds into that sword arm, driven into the bone-
-he gathers up every flame he's gathered over his life—that of life, and of truth, and of victory-
-those passed down and those traded to him and caught and grown—shared and sparked, kindled til the last-
-resolute- <Hiro, it's time.>
-his other brings the candle it holds face to face with the other Heartseeker-
Galaran Pokémon Center, months ago - in memoriam
Hiro: -turning up the heat- If you're really here to fight, you should decide on some last words. Just in case.
John: -the heat, blinking- <Didn't I already have last words?>
Hiro: -frown- Those...have been recorded. More deliberate ones. If you want.
-a young man in a loose T-shirt and shorts stands in a kitchen with a Litwick, counter-bound-
-white-hot fire typically isn't best-suited for cooking, but Hiro compensates with a heat-wicking apparatus (and slight application of powers)-
John: <...it's hard to top whatever you scream getting cut in half.>
Hiro: -poking the Litwick where its nose would be- Are those your last words?
John: -giggle, working for a serious face- <No! Shut up! You suck!>
Hiro: -light- Are those? Is that how you're gonna be remembered?
John: -cackle- <Gimme a break, I'm only nine!>
Hiro: -stirring salt into the broth- And how long have you been nine, John?
John: -smirk, flame sparking up- <How long have you left your laundry in the dryer?>
Hiro: -sip- This isn't about me.
John: -spluttering wax- <Wh—you're the Hero! It's gotta be about you!>
John: <You can still wear clothes, don't go wasting all that dryer heat on my account.>
-the aroma of homemade food suffuses the night-
Hiro: -turning heat to a simmer- Tonight, I'm a simple chef. Chef-librarian, cabinets full of books. And you, John, take your turn to pick the page we eat.
John: -leaning around, as though he can see into closed cabinets- <...do you have any more A Misdreavus of Earthsea?>
-cheap copies for culinary use—Hiro withdraws a well-loved one and tears another three pages along the dotted lines to melt into the pot-
-...on inspecting the specific part of the book they're in, he takes another two more-
John: -wiggling- <Ooooh, that smells meaty.>
-into the broth they go-
Hiro: Don't judge it by its cover alone, John. Steady now.
-Hiro draws a ladleful of soup from the pot and lowers it for John's sipping-perusal-
John: <Tell Chelsea she can have my Pokémon cards. I was joking when I said they weren't hers in the will.>
Hiro: Witnessed, and found true.
Hiro: ...I'll miss you, John.
John: -smiling bravely- <Name a dish after me, Hiro. You're the best little brother I could've asked for.>
John: -firm- <I witness myself.>
-his flame begins to spread-
-he's stabbed once again, and doesn't flinch this time-
John: HEY! Hey, LADY!
Not one drop further.
-the energy content of paraffin wax very nearly approaches that of pure gasoline-
John: -combusting- Guess what dying feels like.
-a human life far exceeds it-
-an unfathomable amount of Obscura flares from Hiro's hand, enveloping the Heartseeker and destroying it utterly-
-blood for blood—it meets the flames dancing over his body and intensifies them, eradicating Adelinde's swords before they can dig any deeper-
-it ejects her knife and melts it to liquid-
-it reaches into her mind and burns and burns and burns-
-John passes the torch to his brother, burning all the way up-
-and the power fades-
-Hiro's crying openly and silently, tears evaporating as soon as they form-
-but he's looking right at Adelinde-
-power ignites in his palm-
Edited by Asterisk395 on Sep 25th 2021 at 9:52:32 AM
Channah: Yeah. I dunno jack about space, but I've been there a lot. Used to live in Hoenn. Well. -sizes her and Dactyl up- I guess you're not... entirely disgusting. Not like a certain asshat who almost singlehandedly ruined my Galar trip. I swear it's harder to tolerate anyone after him.
Channah: -raises eyebrow, looking over- Ew- I mean, nice. I meant how many Galar badges, but that's alright. Hm. -appears to come to a decision- Okay. I was gonna ask if you wanted to come see this weird store, but how bout a quick battle first? Three on three. Didn't peg you for Champion material already, but now I'm slightly interested in how capable your team actually is. -glances at Ananpi as she says this-
Ingrid: "A battle? Oh! Certainly! That would be wonderful... Let's see..."
(She pauses for a bit, before eventually coming to a decision about her three Pokemon. Eventually, she returns Frida and Bjorn, but leaves Ananpi out.)
Ingrid: "Alright, then." (She turns to face Ananpi.) "Ananpi? Would you like to go first?"
Ingrid: "Okay, then. You're on, Ananpi!"
(Ananpi promptly jumps down from Ingrid's shoulder and adjusts his silly-looking spiral glasses.)
Ananpi: (to Channah) <Let's get this battle started, chuu~!>
Aislinn: "... Ah. So you noticed that."
She doesn't seem particularly surprised, but she also doesn't look enthused about it either.
Aislinn: "Yes, I am aware of the mask's.. special qualities."
Jacqueline nudges her.
Jacqueline: "You may as well tell them about the.. thing. They're going to be helping out, they should know."
Aislinn: (sighing) ".. The mask has a certain.. effect on pokemon or humans on the Auric spectrum that wear it. I would advise that you do not put it on under any circumstances."
Jacqueline seems unsatisfied, but doesn't push the matter.
Aislinn: "Apparently Morata doesn't keep many servants, no. In my research I found only two that really stuck around for any length of time- an older woman and a man around my age. Both of them are a bit of a mystery, but the woman seems to have been around far longer than the man. I.. believe it was the man who attacked me. He seemed to have far more strength than a normal person and he recovered from his injuries unnaturally quickly."
Ignoring the Stunfisk for now, not!Daydre breathes a sigh of relief that they did not break their girlfriend's back.
(to HUD!Vee)"Thanksforthat Ineedtoconsidermyactionsmorecarefully"
They give Suiko a wave. At Ironspine's call not!Daydre signals to Friendo, who starts retracting the line as fast as they can.
MONARCH, now devoid of targets, occupies himself by slapping away any Stunfisk that happen to be falling towards the group.
"Your what likes what"
Daydre in turn gets redder and redder the longer Megan goes on. She looks tempted to retract her hands to cover her face but... doesn't.
Parts of her duel for supremacy. One wants to say "no I'm not cool, I'm very uncool actually and can't achieve even the simple things I set out to do" and the other wants to believe in what Megan's saying, just for the simple fact that she's her, and Daydre trusts her.
"I..." Is she tearing up a little?
"I don't know if anyone's ever told me that before?"
"I know there's people that care about me but I don't think anyone's ever said those words, directly."
"For what it's worth, I want to do anything I can for you, too."
"I can only do.. so much, but if you call for me I'll drop anything to do it."
Edited by Daydre on Sep 25th 2021 at 10:28:42 AM
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