Ch. 11 Judgement
Andrew woke up sitting in the pavilion against the tree trunk; Latias still curled up in his lap, still asleep. He yawned and stretched his arms before leaning back against the tree trunk. He rested a hand on Latias' head, ruffling her feathers.
"Wakey-wakey, its morning," Andrew yawned again as Latias lifted her head, eyes half closed. She remembered where she was and nuzzled his cheek.
<'Morning,> she smiled tiredly. <Are we still in the pavilion?> she asked, still not willing to fully open her eyes.
"Yup. We're still outside. Did you sleep well?" Latias thought for a moment and looked where her head was resting across Andrew's lap.
<Yea. I didn't think legs could make that good of a pillow. You?>
"Well, my legs are asleep now, but I slept nicely. It's been a long time since I've been able to slow down and smell the flowers," He took a deep breath as Latias sat up next to him and leaned against his shoulder, resting her head against Andrew's neck.
"Come on, get up. We need to go make sure Latios didn't get into any trouble," He pushed her away and stood up, letting the blood flow back into his legs, the painful tingling making him cringe. Latias floated up beside him, rubbing her eyes and yawning. She changed into her human illusion, but the top of her head didn't change due tot eh messed up feathers.
"Latias, your head," Andrew teased. Latias looked at him for a moment and then felt the top of her head.
<Oh! Andrew, why'd you do that?> she asked as she smoothed the feathers, the illusion melting into place.
"Because I had to wake you up, now come on." Andrew started down the ladder, Latias close behind.
Andrew heard his name being called and recognized Latios' voice.
"I'm over here!" Andrew called out to him. Latios floated out from one of the path ways, an oddly colored Flygon not far behind.
<Ah, there you are. This is Nira,> Latios motioned to the Flygon, who was waiting shyly a little further behind. She was an unusually dark shade of green with dark orange gel covering her eyes and stripes of the same color rather than the usual dark green ones that were that of your typical Flygon.
"Hello, Nira. I take it you two met last night?" Andrew gave a slight bow. Nira cautiously walked a little closer, still being shy, and unsure of how Andrew could understand her.
<Yep. Latios noticed I was alone and asked me if I would fly around with him,> she answered, more curious now about Andrew understanding her, so she asked.
"I'm but a lowly wizard of the elements," Andrew answered with a tiny smirk.
<Really? Show me something then,> Nira was getting more curious.
"Anything for the friend of a friend," Andrew said and looked around for a source of water. There was a fountain nearby and he closed his eyes concentrating on it. An orb of water floated out and when Andrew opened his eyes, it was in front of them. Nira was staring wide eyed as it formed into the shape of a cup and Andrew grabbed onto it and raised the water cup in a mock toast, "To magic," he smiled and drank the water.
<That was incredible!> Nira exclaimed, now being completely open.
"If you'll excuse me, I need to go find Althalos. We need to get moving again. The next stop will be Slateport City," Andrew walked towards the castle, getting many stares from the people who had watched his little act.
"I told you that you would have fun last night," Latias poked Latios' shoulder and ran off after Andrew.
<Who is that girl anyways? From what I can already tell, she really likes that magician boy,> Nira said to Latios.
<Hmm? Oh, that's my sister. She's using a human illusion right now. Also, Andrew isn't actually a magician. Come with me and I'll explain,> Latios answered and floated down another path, Nira at his side.
- - - - - - - - - - -
"Althalos? The Typhlosion? No, I haven't seen him since last night, looking for somewhere to sleep. I told him there were some extra quarters for him on the third floor; you should look for him there.
"Thank you very much, Lady Doris," Andrew bowed and Latias gave a small curtsey.
The two walked up to the third floor and all the doors were open except for one. Andrew opened it just a bit and saw Althalos sprawled sideways on the bed, armor heaped in a pile in a corner. He gave a loud snore to confirm that he was asleep and Andrew opened the door just enough to slip in. He looked at Latias and put a finger to his lips, making sure she stayed quiet. The heavy curtains were closed, letting in almost no light. Andrew tip-toed to the foot of the bed and whispered to Latias.
"You open the curtains as wide as you can and I'll scare 'im on the count of three, okay? We'll run out the door before he can figure out what happened." Latias just giggled opened the door a little wider then walked to the curtains, ready to pull them open while Andrew knelt in front of the Typhlosion's face.
"One," Andrew started, "Two. Three!" Andrew yelled out as loud as he could and Latias opened the curtains to their full extent, letting in blinding light. Andrew and Latias sprinted out of the room and down the broad steps tot eh courtyard before Althalos, who had jumped out of the bed and landed on the floor, knew what was happening.
They ducked under a tree so that they couldn't be seen if Althalos looked out his window, Andrew peaked out but couldn't see anything. "Come on, let's go see what he's doing," Andrew ran back into the castle, Latias on his heels. They then sneaked up to the floor and peaked into Althalos' room. Andrew could see the top of the fire type's head bobbing up and down on the other side of the bed and he could hear laughing. Andrew tip-toed in and snuck up behind Althalos then pulled on one of his ears. He tried to duck behind the bed, but Althalos grabbed his arm and pulled him over the bed, landing upside down and backwards at the Althalos' side.
"Well, this is awkward," Andrew said as he attempted to unfold himself.
<Thanks. I needed to laugh again. It's been far too long since I've done that,> Althalos got up and hoisted Andrew to his feet. <You do know I'm gonna have to get you back for that though,> Althalos patted Andrew's back.
"I'd like to see you try," Andrew poked Althalos' arm.
<Want to make a bet?>
"10 silver shints that you can't trick me by the end of the summer."
<It's not going to take that long,> Althalos held out a hand for Andrew to shake and just as he was about to grab it, the Typhlosion smacked Andrew upside the head. Latias gasped but Andrew just turned back and grinned. <That's for making me hit me head on the ceiling. Also, you owe me 10 silver shints.>
"Ah-ah. We never actually shook on it. You get one for actually managing to make it hurt. You'll get the rest of it after we shake on it and you do something." Andrew reached into his pocket and pulled a silver coin out and flipped it to Althalos, who caught it mid spin between his fingers.
<Fine. Have it your way, Sir Unshakeable.> Althalos held out his hand again and Andrew shook it before the fire type could pull anything again.
"We're leaving to Slateport in about 20 minutes Althalos. Come on Latias, I need to return this suit. Where's your dress?" Andrew asked as they left the room.
<Oh, I gave it to a maid while you were talking to Lady Doris and rushed back before you noticed.>
"Well, I'll be back in a bit. Go talk with some other girls or something. Have some fun while we're still here," Andrew smiled at her and then walked towards what was supposed to be his chambers the previous night. His bag was still there and when he opened it up, a rather unpleasant stench wafted up to his nose. He reached in and felt around, finally touching what felt like bone and decayed flesh and feathers. Bile rose in his throat as he quickly pulled out his clothes and then grabbed the dead thing, holding his nose closed with one hand. In the other, he was holding a decayed pidgey that looked to be at least six months old. There were maggots all over it, but because it hadn't been fully exposed to anything, the bones were still hanging on by bits of muscle, The bones though looked like they had been gnawed on, but those marks were old looking as well. Andrew quickly threw it out the window and then washed his hands off, wondering how it had gone unnoticed for so long and how it had gotten there. Then, he remembered. It was back in winter, when he had first met Latios and Latias. That first morning, he had never eaten, but Typhlosion, his friend, a Quilava at that time, had dragged the food in and had probably eaten it himself, but never got to finish. It made him said to think of Typhlosion again, but he couldn't be trouble with such thoughts now. There were things to do. Andrew quickly slipped into his shirt and pants and left the uniform neatly on the bed and went out to look for something to do.
- - - - - - - - - - -
General Sontoyo looked around. Was he not dead? The man felt his forehead and found that a crossbow bolt was in fact sticking out of his skull. Had it not hit his brain? He felt the back of his head, and the tip could be felt through his hair. So, he was dead, but where was he? The man looked around. He couldn't see anything at all. Then, in a flash of light, a being appeared before him, Mew. Behind the floating pink cat were the three beings of willpower, emotion and knowledge.
"Your judgment is to begin now." The three beings behind Mew said in unison.
"You are Mark Sontoyo, Hoennian general and loyal patriot. You will give your life for your men and you will not let anyone close die of unnatural causes before you do. Most of all, you believe in the Lord, God." Mew said and reached into the ghosts' body and pulled out a glowing orb, "This is your soul. It will now be weighed against the essences of knowledge, willpower and emotion." Mark couldn't say anything. He was utterly dumbstruck. A large balance generated between Mew and Mark, and on one side Mew placed Marks soul and on the other, the three lake spirits breathed a puff of air, which formed into a glowing orb as well. When the scale finally stopped wobbling, the soul was a little bit heavier than the essence of the three lake spirits.
"Death has been in need of a new apprentice. You fit his desires perfectly," Azelf pointed out.
"Yes. His time is nearing its end. Will you take the job? If not you will still be sent to heaven, the land of the Lord," Uxie said to him. "If you take the job, you may have another chance to make any personal amends."
Mark thought for a moment. He was truly dead. He could go to heaven if he so chose, but there were definitely some things he needed to go.