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BittersweetNSour Let's Go Bite Throats Relationship Status: In Spades with myself
Let's Go Bite Throats
Aug 14th 2022 at 3:30:11 PM

Stormchaser

Mason: ...Yikes. Glad you got out of there, then.

-Corrin returns, this time in human form and carrying a bag of six separate bottles of Gatrade-

Corrin: So, erm, they were three-for-six, but I kind of misinterpreted what that meant and grabbed six thinking I'd only have to pay three, but it was the other way around, and by the time I was in the checkout line I was too embarrassed to put the other three back, so it turned out to be six for twelve—

Mason: Wait, hang on. Twelve what? We're in Sinnoh, they cost like, 300 each.

-Corrin shrugs helplessly-

Corrin: I don't know! It was three for six!

Mason: What currency did you pay with???

Corrin: -distressed corrin noises-

Edited by BittersweetNSour on Aug 14th 2022 at 6:30:39 AM

memyselfandI2 Dunsparce Cloud from The Biosphere Relationship Status: Hooked on a feeling
Dunsparce Cloud
Aug 14th 2022 at 4:36:36 PM

Stormchaser

Percy: I'll pay you back. Thanks for making the trip.

-she drains the Gatrade without stopping to breathe or swallow. Seems like she can just do that-

-by the time she's finished, she looks a little more stable-

Percy: Much better.

-she gives Corrin a few bills-

And you are...human. For some reason. Apparently those scarves are just everywhere and I haven't been paying attention.

-she sighs, and stands up-

Thanks for taking care of me. I should probably go.

Dunsparce didn't stop being a thing or anything.
BittersweetNSour Let's Go Bite Throats Relationship Status: In Spades with myself
Let's Go Bite Throats
Aug 14th 2022 at 6:32:58 PM

Stormchaser

Corrin: -accepting the reimbursement- aaa thank you so much

Mason: Hey, of course. I've gotta look out for an old classmate. You promised to punch Hiro, so I'll promise to punch Carmot, or whatever you need me to do.

memyselfandI2 Dunsparce Cloud from The Biosphere Relationship Status: Hooked on a feeling
Dunsparce Cloud
Aug 14th 2022 at 6:55:31 PM

Stormchaser

Percy: Don't. Don't— don't punch Carmot, or Bren, or anyone. Just keep yourself safe. Everyone else is gone, or crazy, or Nitrogen. I couldn't live with myself if something happened to you because you thought you needed to...I don't know, avenge me or something. You're the trickster, I'm the one who lives with the ghosts. Don't muscle in on my turf.

Dunsparce didn't stop being a thing or anything.
BittersweetNSour Let's Go Bite Throats Relationship Status: In Spades with myself
Let's Go Bite Throats
Aug 14th 2022 at 7:21:44 PM

Stormchaser

Mason: ...Percy. Percy.

-Mason puts his hands on Percy's shoulders in a friendly, but assertive "get it together" way.-

Mason: I'm not actually going to punch them. That wasn't the point. The point is, I'm here to help you, and have your back as long as you've got mine too. And— and there's more of us. Somewhere out there. Mercury's out there. Alonya's somewhere. Helium might be. Anyone might be, if the two of us managed to play ding-dong-ditch at death's door the way we did.

-He gives her good-side shoulder a gentle squeeze.-

Mason: Besides, I couldn't muscle in anyway, we all know I'm almost as bony as you.

OPALGARNET16 Priest of the Temple of Syrinx from Nighttree, New Jersey Relationship Status: Abstaining
Priest of the Temple of Syrinx
Aug 14th 2022 at 7:28:20 PM

Eterna City Gym- vs. Gardenia

Now reeling from the poison damage, Nautilu knew immediately he had to do something. He glanced down for a few moments, figuring that a Withdraw to increase his Defense would be the best option here, before proceeding very quickly to do just that, immediately retreating back into his shell while glaring up at the approaching Roserade all the while.

Nautilu used Withdraw!

Nautilu's Defense rose!

<You paint your smile on your lips

<Blood red nails on your fingertips>

Roserade just smirked a bit by what she considered to be flattery.

<A schoolgirl's dream, you act so shy>

And on that word she immediately threw her bouquet arm onto the field, causing it to become a grassy field filled to the brim with flowers. At this, both Owen and Nautilu's faces gained a massive Oh, Crap! look.

Gardenia's Roserade used Grassy Terrain!

She turned away, forcing the poisoned Nautilu to do nothing more than glance up at her with determination.

<Your very first kiss was your first kiss goodbye>

And seconds later, Nautilu felt the poison coming in again.

Nautilu was hurt by poison!

He flinched, glancing up at Roserade.

<Whoa, you're a loaded gun...>

For a few moments he regretted volunteering to battle the Roserade, but after a few moments of thinking, he realized there was still one way he could turn it around. He smirked, before raising his tentacles to the sky.

<Whoa, there's nowhere to run>

The clouds above Roserade and Nautilu suddenly grew dark, and Owen, realizing what was about to happen, promptly took out an umbrella. Sadly, Gardenia had no such coverage.

And sure enough...

<No one can save you

<The damage is done!>

Nautilu used Hail!

Seconds later, hail started coming down from the skies.

It started to hail!

Unfortunately for Nautilu, Gardenia's Roserade wasn't about to let that slide.

She raised her bouquet hands to the sky herself while glowing in an orange light, and immediately stopped the hail with a Sunny Day.

<Shot through the heart!>

Gardenia's Roserade used Sunny Day!

<And you're to blame>

Nautilu flinched again from the poison damage.

Nautilu was hurt by poison!

<You give love a bad name>

As she sang that line, Gardenia's Roserade promptly shot off a Solar Beam— which Nautilu immediately dodged, now more determined than ever to defeat her.

He proceeded to set up a Hail again.

<I play my part

<And you play your game>

Nautilu used Hail!

It started to hail!

And then seconds later, Gardenia's Roserade answered by charging up another Solar Beam.

<You give love a bad name>

Gardenia's Roserade began charging sunlight!

Unfortunately for her, though, she charged too long, and Nautilu, spying his chance, smirked and immediately let loose with a supereffective Blizzard.

<Yeah, you give love...!>

Nautilu used Blizzard!

It's super effective!

Roserade was buffetted by the Hail!

"Roserade!" cried Gardenia.

Roserade was promptly thrown backwards as the instrumental solo began to kick in. Nautilu smirked, before once again, poison— and hail— set in.

Nautilu was hurt by poison!

Nautilu was buffetted by the hail!

Roserade, meanwhile, stood back up again, before signaling to her Trainer that she was still somewhat okay.

"Alright, Roserade!" said Gardenia. "Now, let's finish that Omastar! Use Solar Beam!"

Nautilu's eyes widened.

Roserade, meanwhile, nodded, and raised her Power Herb to the sky. It began to glow with a red light, and she promptly began to charge up a Solar Beam very quickly.

Too quickly.

So quickly, in fact, that Nautilu didn't notice the move before it hit him.

Gardenia's Roserade used Solar Beam!

It's super effective!

A critical hit!

It proceeded to knock him backwards against the wall.

"Nautilu!" screamed Owen.

<NOOOOO!> cried Stipax.

When the dust faded, Nautilu was lying on the floor, and for a few moments afterwards, the music seemed to stop. All eyes turned to Nautilu, and much to the relief of everyone involved, Nautilu was still alive, struggling barely to push himself back up and looking much, much worse for the wear.

He didn't know if he could make it.

Owen didn't know if he could make it. For a few moments, he regretted approving Nautilu to fight a Grass-type Pokemon in the first place, even with the Ice-type coverage.

And then, from the stands— they heard it.

A crowd of thousands of people all singing in unison:

"SHOT THROUGH THE HEART!

"AND YOU'RE TO BLAME

"YOU GIVE LOVE A BAD NAME"

It became abundantly clear that they were singing that to Roserade, not to Nautilu.

Nautilu, starting to become empowered by the will of the crowd— and his own will— steadily rose, despite the poison surging through him.

Nautilu was hurt by poison!

And the hail.

Nautilu was buffetted by the hail!

The audience continued as Nautilu rose up, glaring over at Roserade all the while.

"I PLAY MY PART

"AND YOU PLAY YOUR GAME—"

And then seconds later, Nautilu pointed his tentacle directly at Roserade, and with full intent to take her down, cried out:

<You give love a bad name!>

And then he— and Roserade— burst forth at each other, throwing out attacks at each other, as the crowd lost their absolute minds.

<Shot through the heart!

<And you're to blame>

Roserade proceeded to throw out a Solar Beam, which Nautilu instantly dodged, before proceeded to shoot out an Ice Beam of his own.

Nautilu used Ice Beam!

It's super effective!

That hit Roserade and knocked her back, but even then she refused to go down, tossing an Energy Ball at Nautilu as she sang:

<You give love a bad name>

Gardenia's Roserade used Energy Ball!

It's super effective!

The move hit, but Nautilu quickly recovered, for a few moments, not seeming to care about the poison...

Nautilu was hurt by poison!

...or the hail.

Nautilu was buffetted by the hail!

Roserade was battered over the head by the hail, but refused to go down without a fight despite her limited HP, and the two mons continued throwing out attacks at each other.

<I play my part...>

Nautilu used Aurora Beam!

Roserade promptly responded by raising her Power Herb and letting loose with a Solar Beam which met Nautilu's Aurora Beam in the middle.

Gardenia's Roserade used Solar Beam!

<You give love...>

The two struggled for a few moments, but eventually, Nautilu burst forth as his Aurora Beam overtook Roserade's Solar Beam.

<...a bad name!>

Roserade's eyes grew wide with horror, as the audience around them began to chant "WHOA-OH-OH" and Roserade promptly got hit and thrown backwards while Nautilu continued with the last few lines of the song:

<You give love...>

It's super effective!

A critical hit!

A cloud of dust went up on Roserade's side as Nautilu landed, and when it faded, Gardenia's Roserade was finally down, lying on her side with swirls in her eyes. She was barely able to get out the words <you give love... a bad name...> before the crowd around them proceeded to lose their minds.

Gardenia's Roserade fainted!

Nautilu, by this point barely concious, turned to face Owen, who was running up to him in delight as the last few lines of the song played.

"ALRIGHT!" cried Owen, running up to hug him. "That was amazing, Nautilu!"

Nautilu smirked weakly as he turned to face his Trainer.

<I'm... glad you think that,> he muttered.

And then seconds later, he flinched from the poison damage.

Nautilu was hurt by poison!

"Nautilu?" asked Owen.

Nautilu didn't say anything in response, instead finally, finally collapsing from exhaustion and poison damage in Owen's arms.

Right as the last of "You Give Love a Bad Name" faded out.

Nautilu fainted!

Owen glanced down at Nautilu for a bit, then smiled.

"Wow," he said eventually. "Guess all that poison must have tired you out, huh?"

He took out Nautilu's PokeBall and returned him.

"You did great, Nautilu," he said. "I've never seen you fight so hard before for a win."

OWEN EDMUNDSON HAS DEFEATED GARDENIA'S ROSERADE

GARDENIA HAS NO POKEMON LEFT

WINNER: OWEN EDMUNDSON

Hi, I’m oghond, and I’m a Rushaholic. Sorry if I annoy you unintentionally. 😅
memyselfandI2 Dunsparce Cloud from The Biosphere Relationship Status: Hooked on a feeling
Dunsparce Cloud
Aug 14th 2022 at 8:02:22 PM

Stormchaser

Percy: I...

-she only really has the one tear duct, and it's close enough to the somewhat uncomfortable heat given off by her other eye that tears tend to evaporate quickly-

Percy: I helped them.

Bren wanted me to show him how I'd developed my skills since leaving the base. So I went with him and I revived a fossil for Dr. Carmot. I spent a year hating Nitrogen for going back to them, telling myself that I didn't give up when I could have, but it turns out I'm the same kind of coward as she is.

Dunsparce didn't stop being a thing or anything.
Asterisk395 No voice to cry suffering from Hallownest Relationship Status: With my statistically significant other
No voice to cry suffering
Aug 14th 2022 at 8:17:32 PM

Hearthome, Vegan Place

-Logan just sort of stares for a socially-inappropriate moment-

Logan: …yeah.

-Addie hops back into their lap, squeaking-

Logan: Everyone seems to have forgotten because there's nothing to remember. It took place in an alternate timeline.

Addie: -pointing up- <...well, to be pedantic.>

-Logan wrinkles their nose, thinking of the multiversal catastrophe-

Logan: …not like all those others. An alternate timeline that briefly overwrote this one.

No mind to think. No will to break.
memyselfandI2 Dunsparce Cloud from The Biosphere Relationship Status: Hooked on a feeling
Dunsparce Cloud
Aug 14th 2022 at 8:30:13 PM

Hearthome, Vegan Place

Adelinde: Hm. Five years ago, I would have told you to pull the other one. But it would make sense.

Though I don't think I lived very long. A catastrophe wiped out most of Sinnoh, which is where I was working at the time. A bit embarrassing, really.

What interests me is that I remember it, when most don't. Not even most of my coworkers, who are...better at memorizing things than average.

Dunsparce didn't stop being a thing or anything.
ParadoxialStratagem The Eccentric Electric from On Melancholy Hill Relationship Status: Hiding
The Eccentric Electric
Aug 14th 2022 at 8:53:32 PM

Eterna City Gym:

As the battle between Nautilu and the Roserade continued, both Mark and Travis would find themselves captivated by the frequent weather changes, powerful attacks, and just how much damage Nautilu was tanking. <That Omastar is doing pretty well for having a type disadvantage. How much longer can he keep it up though?> Chopper wondered as both he and the other pokemon had their gaze focused on the fight.

<Never underestimate the power of Fighting Spirit. You'll be surprised how much a beating someone can take when they're too strong and too determined to lose,> Mark replied in a way that hinted at speaking from experience. Travis meanwhile continued watching the fight while leaning back, arms crossed and feet propped up on the chair in front of him. “If I didn't know any better, I'd have thought this whole fight was staged with how coordinated the music is,” He scoffed with a noticeable sense of boredom, “It's too bad this isn't like a benefit concert or something, might as well be and—-woah did you see that?!”

At this point Travis would get up out of his seat and witness the dueling pokemon exchange attack after super-effective attack. “I should brought some damn popcorn, this is actually getting pretty good. Like watching DBZ while it was still good,” Mark stated while Travis whipped out his phone and punched in a few Poketch commands to wirelessly transfer Haxx into the phone.

“Leave the details to me, just focus on what you want to see,” Haxx told his trainer without actually intending to rhyme as Travis snapped a few pictures of the Aurora and Solar Beams locking into each other. Travis would follow up with several rapid-fire snapshots the moment he and the rest of the attendees saw Nautilu's Aurora Beam overtake the Solar Beam and throw the Roserade backwards.

“I'm sure you'll find something worth keeping Haxx, I gave you a lot to work with...sorry in advance,” Travis replied, with the Rotom replying as he ran a suite of post-processing programs, “Eh don't worry about it, this is hardly anything for me,”

Upon seeing the Roserade, the favorite the crowd expected to win get bested by a bad matchup, Mark would punch the air in proud defiance. “Hell yeah! Show them matchups don't mean shit when you know how to win!” Mark shouted over the sound of the audience reactions, with his reaction quickly shifting to surprise as he watched the Omastar succumb to their poison and faint.

“Uhh Mark, that Omastar never got their poison cured...” Travis pointed out, silently grateful the music finally stopped. “Yeah, Fighting Spirit only gets you so far...and it's not like Owen could have wasted a move using an Antidote or Full Restore, just to get poisoned again or taken out with a powerful move.” Mark said in response before Travis remarked, “I might have been late to the party, but at least I got to see what looked like the best parts.”

Mark, Travis and company would wait for the departing crowds to disperse before leaving the stands themselves, albeit with the intention to congratulate Owen once he received his new badge and was free to leave.

Living The Fever Dream
OPALGARNET16 Priest of the Temple of Syrinx from Nighttree, New Jersey Relationship Status: Abstaining
Priest of the Temple of Syrinx
Aug 14th 2022 at 9:10:22 PM

Eterna City Gym- Post-Battle

Gardenia returned her fainted Roserade as Owen went over to the Gym speakers and unplugged his phone before eventually pausing the playlist, which was just about to switch to the next song. He then put his phone away as an excited Gardenia went over to him.

"That was amazing!" she gushed. "Even if it did fall to poison, the way that your Omastar battled was certainly something!"

"Um... thanks," said Owen, not knowing how to feel about the compliment.

Stipax, meanwhile, jumped back up onto Owen's shoulder as Gardenia reached into her pocket, pulling out a badge resembling a grove of trees along with a green disk.

"As a reward for you beating me, I'd like you to have this: the official Pokemon League Forest Badge," she said.

Owen took the badge and stared at it in awe for a few moments.

"Whoa... wow, thanks!" he said, putting it away into his Sinnoh badge case.

"Oh, and here, take this too," said Gardenia, handing him the green disk.

For a few moments, Owen glanced at the disk.

"Grass Knot?" he muttered. "I think I have a few mons that this could be of use for. Thanks, Gardenia."

"Oh, don't mention it!" she said. "I take it you're heading to Veilstone next?"

"Well... probably," said Owen. "I heard the Gym Leader there uses Fighting-type Pokemon."

"She sure does," said Gardenia. "But I have a feeling you'll be able to take her down!"

Owen nodded. "Yeah... I think so too."

And with that said, he and Stipax left...

Eterna City- Outside

...only to be met with two familiar faces as soon as they walked outside.

<Is that...?> Stipax muttered.

Owen instantly broke into a grin and started waving his hands frantically.

"Mark!" he cried. "Travis!"

Hi, I’m oghond, and I’m a Rushaholic. Sorry if I annoy you unintentionally. 😅
BittersweetNSour Let's Go Bite Throats Relationship Status: In Spades with myself
Let's Go Bite Throats
Aug 14th 2022 at 9:12:13 PM

Stormchaser

-Mason's eyes widen.-

Mason: O...oh. Oh, that's a lot different from what I was imagining.

-His grip on Percy's shoulder does not diminish, but his brow furrows.-

Mason: But— but that doesn't make you anywhere close to as bad as Nitrogen. She plays up that guilty conscience just as much as the rest of us do when it involves others from our class, but from the sounds of it after she met Kai, she's just as bloodthirsty as the rest of them. You're not. We do what it takes to survive.

ParadoxialStratagem The Eccentric Electric from On Melancholy Hill Relationship Status: Hiding
The Eccentric Electric
Aug 14th 2022 at 9:43:31 PM

Eterna City Outside:

Upon spotting and being remembered by Owen and Stipax, Travis would make a light, almost effortless wave with the greeting, “ 'Sup dude?!” made with a delivery so lazy, it sounded more like, “Saw doo?!” which was not uncommon in his hometown. Mark meanwhile would make a congratulatory fist pump that would turn into an offer for a fist bump while saying, “Nice job winning that gym battle. You didn't let yourself get discouraged and stayed determined to fight to the end, and I respect that.”

Chopper meanwhile would make a friendly wave towards Owen and Stipax, which looked rather goofy thanks to Chopper's closed-eye smile. <Hello old friends, I was wondering if we'd ever meet again!> Tricky meanwhile would simply look at everyone and acknowledge their existence while dryly muttering, <Oh joy, everyone's all here. Good job, and all that.>

<Come on Tricky, give Owen's team more credit than that! Not everyone can challenge a gym leader's team and win!> Chopper insisted, with Tricky merely sighing in response, <I suppose...not like I ever fought any gym leader pokemon...or wanted to.>

“Congratulations [OWEN EDMUNDSON] on your stunning v-v-victory! How does it feel being [25%] complete with your Sinnoh Region badge collection?” Haxx would ask before making a notification chime vaguely inspired by the Superintendent. “Master Travis, all 47 of your photos have been post-processed to completion and are ready for your review!”

“I'll get to it when I get to it...and don't call me Master. I don't care for titles unlike my dad,” Travis replied dismissively while wondering where his Starly wandered off. “Wingo? Wingo?! Where the hell did you fly off to now?!” Travis said, softly at first before raising his voice as he struggled to find his pokemon, only to discover the Starly flying circles around the group before landing on a nearby trash bin searching for food scraps.

“Wingo no, don't eat the trash! You're better than that! Get out of there!” Travis scolded, only to be ignored as Wingo pecked through the trash with determination to find food, about to eat some stale french fries before getting returned to his pokeball and violently shaking it while trying to escape, but to no avail as Travis hard-locked the pokeball on a timer for 5 minutes.

Living The Fever Dream
Asterisk395 No voice to cry suffering from Hallownest Relationship Status: With my statistically significant other
No voice to cry suffering
Aug 14th 2022 at 9:52:26 PM

Hearthome, Vegan Place

Logan: Of all the reasons to call off sick, dying in the apocalypse is up there.

Waiter: Your orders...

-Logan accepts their and Addie's portion, thanking them...-

-and takes a sip of that drink-

Logan: -shrugging- Almia's not too far from Sinnoh, here. And it wasn't from that universe's me that I heard what happened. Or any of my coworkers.

-so they grimace commiseratingly-

Logan: -tapping their finger on the table, idle- That aside, this isn't unheard-of, actually. For whatever reason, the crossover wasn't complete—you could awaken memories of the original timeline in the overwritten one, and when the timeline...

-they stall out, grasping for the specific word they need-

Logan: ...repaired? Reverted...? The memories flowed the other way.

Waiter: My sister's girlfriend's cousin says he remembers a past life as an Aron.

Logan: -smiling- Not quite the same thing, but we'll keep it in mind.

Waiter: He's pretty descriptive. Says the rocks taste better.

Addie: -looking up at them- <If she remembered it from the start, though?>

Logan: Yeah, that's what I was leading toward. Even less common is...a sort of condition of the soul. Where you resist existential, fundamental changes from the start. The term was...

-they drum their fingers on the table, closing their eyes-

Logan: ...Minds of Crystal.

-hearing this, spreading their hands- Not a matter of training. Or inheritance, from what I hear—where and when it crops up is pretty random. And I'm sure goes unnoticed most of the time. Time itself can't change that often, right?

No mind to think. No will to break.
OPALGARNET16 Priest of the Temple of Syrinx from Nighttree, New Jersey Relationship Status: Abstaining
Priest of the Temple of Syrinx
Aug 14th 2022 at 9:55:10 PM

Eterna City

Owen nodded, returning Mark's fist-bump. "Thanks."

<Chopper~!> cried Stipax, jumping down from his Trainer's shoulder. <How have you been? It's been so long since we last met... You remember Steggy, don't you? The Shiny Turtwig with a Voltorb on his back? Well, he evolved!>

Owen, meanwhile, promptly took notice of Haxx and, later, Wingo, and chuckled a bit upon seeing Wingo get into the trash.

"Awww, he's a cute Starly," said Owen. "Oh, by the way, I caught a few more new mons myself."

He proceeded to reach into his bag and pull out three PokeBalls, which he tossed into the air.

"Come on out, guys!"

In three subsequent flashes, Eurypedis, Anomalo, and Cephalo emerged. Anomalo, naturally, instantly began running around and feeling at Mark and Travis, while Eurypedis and Cephalo just stared at each other.

<Who on earth are these new folk?> asked Eurypedis.

<I dunno, but they seem pretty sick~!> cried Cephalo, going up to Mark and Travis. <'Sup? The name's Cephalo! Pleasure to— theeeey don't speak Monese do they.>

Eurypedis turned to face Owen. "Do they speak Monese?" he asked.

"Well, Mark does," said Owen. "A little bit, anyways."

"Ah," said Eurypedis. "Which one is Mark?"

<The one with the Machoke,> said Stipax.

<Ah,> said Eurypedis.

He walked up to Mark and Travis and bowed to them.

"Pleasure to meet both of you," he said.

Anomalo, meanwhile, was still frantically feeling at Mark and Travis, and by now was climbing up Mark's shoulder.

<A-are these things scary?> he asked.

He scurried off of Mark unconciously and headed over to Chopper, and began to climb all over him.

<Oh?> he said. <This one is new... at least I think this one is new...>

Hi, I’m oghond, and I’m a Rushaholic. Sorry if I annoy you unintentionally. 😅
memyselfandI2 Dunsparce Cloud from The Biosphere Relationship Status: Hooked on a feeling
Dunsparce Cloud
Aug 14th 2022 at 11:59:44 PM

Stormchaser

Percy: I— yeah. Of course. But...I made it harder for everyone else to, by giving her resources. I made her a full-size Tyrantrum, augmented with some crystal, because I thought it would turn on her and Bren and give me time to escape. But she just controlled it.

-wry, skeletal smile-

Can't beat a Templar or a doctor, right?

Hearthome, Vegan Place

Adelinde: Yeah, my bosses might not see it that way.

-she eats some food, chewing thoughtfully with a brisk nod to the waiter-

(-when they start talking, she reads their mind, but says nothing more on the matter-)

Hm. I don't believe in souls on the metaphysical scale, but I'd be hard-pressed to deny their material reality. But...it can't be entirely independent of genetics, if it's something so intrinsic. There must be a trackable component. Unless it's something contracted.

-she looks genuinely perturbed by this-

Lotophage: <Not necessarily true. Could be conferred.>

Adelinde: -frowns, but is not about to admit to understanding Lotophage in front of Logan- I'll have to...talk to my bosses about this. The state of my soul is important to them. But it would explain some things.

Dunsparce didn't stop being a thing or anything.
Asterisk395 No voice to cry suffering from Hallownest Relationship Status: With my statistically significant other
No voice to cry suffering
Aug 15th 2022 at 5:17:50 AM

Hearthome, Vegan Place

(-there's that same snap-crackle-pop of electric shielding around their mind, but that just seems like it's part of their everyday outfit-)

Logan: ghk

(-beneath the static, there's a memory of talking to a Latias about—the oddities of the J-Team that spreads mayhem in their Regions-)

(-intangible traits bundled together, taken as signs of divine favor-)

(-they don't really buy it, either-)

Logan: -quirking their head- Just repeating what I heard. Aside from adding a terrifying new dimension to the Berenstein-Berenstain debate—

Addie: <(It's Berenstein.)>

Logan: —there isn't much it really seems...useful, for.

(-...and, well-)

(-they're trained in emotional self-control, not cognitive counterespionage-)

(-if she really pressed, she could probably tell they're fully aware of what the School is-)

Logan: -...laughing- ...oh, I'm sorry. I just—one of my friends, she'd say stuff like "life is something contracted from other people".

-they're good at faces, though—at the moment, they look more amused than unnerved-

Logan: ...wow, corporate life is killer. Signed a contract with the Betrayer themself?

No mind to think. No will to break.
BittersweetNSour Let's Go Bite Throats Relationship Status: In Spades with myself
Let's Go Bite Throats
Aug 15th 2022 at 5:39:17 AM

Stormchaser

Mason: ...gods, you're powerful.

-He gives Percy a smile-

Mason: But hey, you did escape, didn't you? As far as I'm concerned, escaping unhurt is beating them. Sure, Carmot can puppet a raging fossil, but they can't control us, and the more we remind them of that, the better.

Pentigan Fwomph from The Underverse
Fwomph
Aug 15th 2022 at 6:03:25 AM

Hamlet, Crimson Manor

Under crushing masonry and wood, under flame and force... The pile stops moving as whatever trapped within screeches its last. The crimson red flooding the basement seems to pale, oddly, as a singular glint of metal floats on its surface, drifting out from the tomb.

Delta Carrier

-The Nightingale quietly filed away the information about the Council of 5 before Roxy's gutpunch on Jack caused her to straight up freeze, the eyes of her helmet flickering momentarily-

Was that strictly necessary..? I mean. I would like to avoid too much scrutiny once we render him into proper custody.

-Trying to resolve the tension, she took a step back and from what her helmet eyes were doing, she was probably doing a lot of scrolling documents on her phone-

Greg Palmer. Was he one of your Guild? Has he had contact with your organization within the past... Eight years..?

It's clearly a case of backroom political albumizing.
Aug 15th 2022 at 6:53:00 AM

Stormchaser, Irons' quarters, a few days after the thing

CW: Death Mention

Rusty sat motionless in the corner, morose. Their big brother arrived, carrying a paper nag that reeked of cheap corporate produced tacos. It didn't seem to make them any happier.

Stewart: Hey, thought you might be hungry so I bought food. They have their own Taco Bell.

Rusty: Remember what daddy said about eating away your problems?

Stewart: Don't overdo it?

Rusty: You can't lie to me I know you're sad that she's gone. I'm sad too.

They take a taco from the paper bag. Their brother did the same.

Rusty: What was she like? I never got to know her the way you did.

Stewart: She didn't tell me much. I only had a few conversations with her, and our first one involved telling me that I looked like someone evil.

Rusty: But you're not evil.

Stewart: The Templar that ordered her around was. He looked like me. Not as handsome or as cool though.

They both chuckled.

Stewart: The evil me, he made her do bad things. She ended up hurting someone really bad—

Rusty: But she seemed so nice.

Stewart: Really bad people can do that. Just like the people who made us. But she wanted something else.

Rusty: She was like us. Tell me, will this happen to us?

Stewart: I dunno how to answer that. Maybe. A lot of the schoolkids in my time didn't make it past the first few months. Astatine didn't even get to keep his body long. We're lucky to still be around.

Rusty: Could she not just do whatever Astatine did?

"I'm not sure anyone else has my abilities, Young Iron." Said a voice from the walls.

Stewart: Astatine is right. Her powers may not have included his. Kinda like how we can do things with steel and no one else can.

Rusty: I see. What else did she tell you?

Stewart: I'll tell you how she lived.

As they ate, Stewart regaled his younger sibling with the tale of a runaway girl excited to make choices. A young life eager to live her life to the fullest, who more than anything wanted to be free. Free to make amends to those she wronged. And free to leave behind those who led her astray.

As he tried to hold back his tears, a pit of rage boiled within. It wasn't enough to be free from the School's clutches, he thought to himself. They had to be stopped once and for all. For all the lives they've taken, then and now.

Astatine: I feel your pain, Stewart Mertens. Our sister Vana will be avenged. Everything the good doctors need will soon be in their ship's consciousness.

Stewart: How fast can you work?

Astatine: Could be days, depending on the bandwidth. I can't make promises but I'm prepared to give them everything I sneaseled myself into. And the best part is that they think I'm dead. The cards are in our table.

Aug 15th 2022 at 7:40:03 AM

Route 228

Rory marched through the sands, whatever was out here... he'd find it. He was an investigator, a rumor hunter, somebody who sought out the strange and unusual... probably because he himself was strange and unusual.

<He's doing it again.>

<You really must cease with this inner monologue,> Vergil commented.

Rory nearly tripped. "Can you two read my mind?"

<Nah... we know that look, that's the look of "Internal Monologue and Strife". We've seen it enough,> Dante explained.

"Look, it helps keep me focused. We're looking for something out here, reports said they saw shadowy figures flying over."

"Well... seems we'll have to do something about that," Another voice said.

Rory looked over and his eyes widened. He could only gape at what he saw... "No... no fucking way."

"Subject 80. Mercury. Good to see you again," the smooth voice of Gabriel said.

"Gabriel..." Rory grimaced. "Didn't know you were still alive!"

"I kept to myself often, working on my own projects... still, a living Phantom Class here. To ponder what mutations your DNA has gone under... perhaps you could still be of use."

Rory grabbed his sword, Dante and Vergil extended their wrist blades. Gabriel let out a laugh as landing beside him were 7 foot tall mechanical figures. Rory realized these were the "Shadowy figures".

"Bring it!"

memyselfandI2 Dunsparce Cloud from The Biosphere Relationship Status: Hooked on a feeling
Dunsparce Cloud
Aug 15th 2022 at 10:21:05 AM

Hearthome, Vegan Place

-Adelinde laughs-

Adelinde: I don't put enough stock in the gods to make a deal with any of them. But I do need to be at the top of my game, and if something's tangibly unusual about my soul, it may have game-related consequences.

-she tilts her head slightly-

...But your friend is technically right, I guess. We're working on an upgrade.

...I never read those books, growing up or otherwise. And I can't confirm if they were the same or different in the other world, given as the only point of divergence I'm aware of is whatever caused my death.

-she shrugs-

Maybe I'll see if I can awaken the memories in any of my co-workers. We have a lot of international branches, someone must have made it.

Stormchaser

Percy: ....Yeah.

...

-she doesn't sound totally convinced, but she's at least settled-

He wants us back, you know. He's convinced we have some well of untapped potential, and he's looking for every other Phantom Class survivor to try and bring them back on board. I don't know what it looks like when he figures out none of us are going to go.

I really should go, now. Make sure Apple hasn't flipped their lid, for one. But look out for yourself.

Dunsparce didn't stop being a thing or anything.
BittersweetNSour Let's Go Bite Throats Relationship Status: In Spades with myself
Let's Go Bite Throats
Aug 15th 2022 at 10:27:26 AM

Stormchaser

Mason: ...We'll just have to use that semblance of goodwill for everything it's worth, then. But yeah, you take care of yourself as well.

-Corrin tilts her head at the Apple comment.-

Corrin: Apple's that attached to you? They sound like a puppy waiting at the window.

memyselfandI2 Dunsparce Cloud from The Biosphere Relationship Status: Hooked on a feeling
Dunsparce Cloud
Aug 15th 2022 at 10:46:14 AM

Stormchaser

Percy: ...

-her face flickers red-

Well, they got really worried after the thing with Nitrogen and Adelinde last year, and...they've, you know, sort of declared themself in charge of protecting me. It's a bit sweet, if misguided and really hazardous to their health.

...But yeah, you're not wrong or anything.

Dunsparce didn't stop being a thing or anything.
BittersweetNSour Let's Go Bite Throats Relationship Status: In Spades with myself
Let's Go Bite Throats
Aug 15th 2022 at 11:11:10 AM

Stormchaser

Corrin: Aw. That does sound super sweet.

-She smiles-

Corrin: I'm glad you have someone like that for you.

Mason: So wait are you two a thing or


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