The Kanto Conspiracy: From the Case Files of Lisa Northwood [PG-13]
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July 25th, 2012 (10:49 AM).
Elite Overlord LeSabre™
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: 3560 Lakemont Blvd
Notes: Well, here it is, chapter 3! Past the halfway point now!
Thanks to Haruka of Hoenn for proofreading the chapter!
It's rated PG-13 once again for language, violence, and excessive alcohol use by a Pokemon.
Yeah, not much else to say, so let's get to it! Enjoy!
Pokémon League Investigation Unit, Celadon Branch, 3:29 PM
In Interrogation Room D, Lorelei was growing frustrated as she sat facing the large man that had been arrested outside the bar a few hours ago.
“Mr. Johnson, are you trying to tell me you are not connected in any way to Tobias Bartles?”
“Yes! He’s a rich and powerful CEO! What in the hell would someone like him have to do with a street thug like me?”
“We believe that he’s got a hand in criminal activities across the region. Why wouldn’t he approach street thugs to do his dirty work?”
“Look, lady, whether he does or not, all I know is that the guy’s never approached me in person. Ever. Okay, I admit I do some money laundering for a couple of guys – actually, quite a bit for them – in exchange for cheap prices on meth.”
Lorelei’s eyes widened upon hearing this last statement. “Are you willing to give me their names?”
Bradley Johnson said, “Okay, you didn’t hear this from me, but their names are Nick Tripp and Jeff Mercer.”
“All right, I believe that’s all the questions I have for today. Guards, you may escort Mr. Johnson back to the city jail.”
The two officers standing in the corner of the room stood Johnson up and walked him out of the interrogation room. Lorelei followed them out and headed back to her office.
“Nick Tripp and Jeff Mercer… let me look these guys up…”
Route 6, 4:08 PM
The large black sedan made its way north from Vermilion, following a two-lane road snaking its way through grassy fields. The highway was surprisingly devoid of other vehicles. Inside the car, an eerie silence was broken up suddenly.
“So, Mr. Turner, how about you introduce us to your family here?” asked Alexis.
“Alright, this is my wife Kitty and my daughter Irene. Irene’s in fifth grade now and…” The accountant suddenly became flustered. “Oh, dear God, I never wanted to involve my family in all this…”
“Relax, honey,” said the wife as she put her arm around her husband. “You know, you’re doing the right thing here.”
“She’s right,” added Shannon. “These are dangerous criminals we’re dealing with, and the sooner we can get them off the streets, the better. Your testimony is going to help make all of Kanto a safer place.”
“I know that, but… I’m just worried, that’s all.”
As the car made its way toward Saffron, its occupants were unaware of a helicopter off in the distance. Three men were inside the aircraft, one of them closely watching the black Ford through a pair of binoculars.
“Sir, five occupants in the car, one of them’s a kid. Does the boss want us to finish her off, too?”
At the controls, Mercer replied, “He told me everybody needed to die. He doesn’t want anybody alive who could testify against us later. ‘Not even a Weedle,’ were his exact words, I believe.”
Mercer changed direction and headed toward the roadway as the other two men grabbed M16 assault rifles. As the copter took position behind the agents’ sedan, the men carefully made their way out onto the craft’s skids, one on each side.
Inside the car, Alexis began to hear the whirring of the helicopter’s propellers and spotted the craft in her rear view mirror.
All three Turner family members ducked as gunfire ripped through the rear window, shattering it into thousands of pieces. They screamed as their backs were pelted with the debris. More gunshots put huge bullet holes in the car’s trunk lid and bumper, and shattered both taillights.
“You try to throw them off balance, I’ll try to get a few shots off at them!” Shannon shouted as she pulled out her service pistol and returned fire. The sedan began weaving from side to side on the narrow road, causing both parties to miss their targets with their bullets. As the pursuit continued, young Irene Turner in the back seat began yelling and crying.
“Calm down, sweetie,” said the girl’s mother. “We’ll get out of this… I hope…”
“Ma’am, don’t worry, we fully intend to protect all of you.”
Meanwhile, Shannon had ducked back into the car to reload. “Damn, I can’t seem to get a clear shot at these guys. I’ve been hitting nothing but helicopter this whole time!”
“I know, and this road’s too narrow,” Alexis said. “I can only keep dodging those bullets for so long.”
Meanwhile, both of the shooters had also retreated back inside. One of the men shouted, “Mr. Mercer, we can’t get a clean hit on those back tires; they’re swerving way too much!”
“Fine, I’ll get in front of that thing and you aim for the hood. If we disable that engine, it’ll be all over for them!”
The helicopter veered off to make a wide arc, ending up back over the roadway, now facing the agents.
The men reappeared on the skids and began blasting bullets into the front of the car. It only took a few shots to disable the engine, as it exploded in a burst of fire and a cloud of smoke. The ruined car began drifting off into a ditch.
Still inside the vehicle, Alexis yelled to the family, “Get your hands on those door releases, and when I say so, RUN!” Mr. and Mrs. Turner did as instructed, as both agents did the same.
As the car came to a stop, the two assailants watched as the aircraft hovered in place, waiting to see the next move that would be made. But the constant whirring of the helicopter allowed a large blue station wagon to pull up behind them undetected. With the gunmen still trained on the destroyed Ford, they never noticed as two girls got out of their car. Both had white hats with wide brims, one with red trim and the other with purple.
One of the girls, in a blue top and red skirt, whispered. “Are you sure these special hats are gonna work?”
The other girl, in a blue dress and green blouse said, “Of course, I’ve used these dozens of times before. Now, let’s hurry before they spot us!”
Both girls took off their hats and threw them at the aircraft. The brims of both hats sliced the skids on either side directly in the center in a shower of sparks, causing both men to lose their balance and fall to the pavement.
The girl in the dress winked. “See, what’d I tell you? Our custom hats worked like a charm!”
Before the men had a chance to recover their wits or their guns, the four girls were upon them. Two of them kicked the rifles out of reach while the other two gave the men a couple of roundhouse kicks to the head right as they were struggling to their feet. Alexis and Shannon quickly finished off the job with choking control holds that rendered the gunmen unconscious. Meanwhile the Turner family had gotten out of the destroyed Crown Vic, and looked on as the four female agents finished off the would-be assassins.
As soon as his partners hit the pavement, the pilot, Jeff Mercer, beat a hasty retreat. Slamming his hands on the control panel in frustration, he shouted, “Oh, ****, Mr. Bartles sure ain’t gonna be happy about this… and how am I gonna land this thing with damaged skids?” He quickly took flight back toward Saffron City.
Alexis shouted, “Hey, Lisa! Great timing, as usual! But the commander was right when she said we’d need all the help we could get! These guys mean business!”
“Always glad to be of service. Oh, here’s that partner I told you about. You can call her Leaf – she’s supposed to be the Champion around these parts, but right now she’s working with us.”
“And you must be Alexis and Shannon. Lisa’s told me quite a bit about you two. You’ve done some pretty impressive work, I’ve heard.”
“Well, yeah,” Shannon replied as she rubbed the back of her head, “but Lisa’s done some really impressive stuff too – she just likes to downplay it.”
“Anyway, back to business,” said Lisa as she cleared her throat, “why don’t you three check on the witnesses – I’ve got an idea to throw Bartles off their trail. But I need to make a call or two.” But before Lisa could make that call, she received an incoming message from Lorelei.
“00479, I interviewed Johnson, that suspect you and Agent Purvis arrested outside the bar earlier today. He gave up the names Nick Tripp and Jeff Mercer as the guys who he did money laundering for. Turns out both of them have gang connections and they both work as office assistants for OTP. And the file photo of Mr. Tripp looks nearly identical to that guy who was in Bartles’ office when we went and interviewed him. It’s enough to get warrants on those two, but not the big fish. How goes the transport of Mr. Turner?”
“He and his family are safe, but it looks like Bartles is pulling out all the stops to keep them from testifying. His men destroyed the Crown Vic that 00158 and 00236 were driving. I do have an idea, but I’ll need you to send a helicopter and two or three more agents to our current location.”
“All right, I’ll get that taken care of as soon as I can.”
Turning off the phone, Lisa turned to Leaf. “So, how do you like the new hats our research expert, E, came up with?”
“Man, these things are awesome!” she replied as she recovered both girls’ hats from where they lay on the roadway. Cute and deadly all at once! I mean, putting a slicer ring into the brims… that’s pure genius!”
Lisa smiled. “I like to call these the ‘Oddjob Special,’ myself!”
Bartles Estate, Route 16, 5:17 PM
Clicking off his phone, Tobias Bartles had a furious look on his face. “TRIPP!”
“Yes, sir?” The brown-haired businessman entered the lavish living room, shaking nervously.
“Mercer has failed; he’s coming back here now, so I hope you have another plan for keeping Turner from testifying!”
“Um… okay, sir, are they still in the same car?”
“No, Mercer said a blue station wagon with wood on the sides showed up, and since those idiots did manage to kill the other car’s engine, I’d imagine they’d be in that blue wagon now.”
“Okay, then I do have an idea. It’s getting late, so I’d imagine they’re going to be staying at a hotel in Saffron tonight. So I’ll have more of my men patrol all the hotel parking lots looking for that car. If they find it, they’ll wait to ambush them when they leave the hotel the next morning.”
Bartles frowned. “One big flaw with that, Tripp. What if they just decide to pass right by town tonight and keep going?”
“Impossible, sir. Road crews are doing a nighttime construction project on Route 7, and they’re at the stage now where they close down the entire roadway from 6:00 PM to 6:00 AM. They can’t make it to their Celadon headquarters till morning unless they detour back to Vermilion, down Silence Bridge, through Fuchsia and back up Route 17, and that detour would take longer than waiting the night out in Saffron.”
“I see, then. All right, Tripp, send your men out to all the area hotels, from the Motel 6 to the Ritz-Carlton. This time, your idea had better work. Or else you sleep with the Goldeen off Silence Bridge!”
As Tripp left the room, Red sauntered in, drinking from a bottle of Jack Daniels whiskey. “Trouble, Dad?”
The father sighed. “Only the regret of hiring complete incompetents as employees. Let me have some of that stuff; I could use a little intoxication right about now. After all, I had to give your friend the rest of my booze earlier today.”
“All right, here you go. So, I take it that the accountant is still alive?”
As he took a swig from the bottle, Tobias replied, “Yeah. And by the sounds of it, now Northwood and that Leaf girl have joined those other two agents in protecting him. Tripp says they’ll be stuck in Saffron tonight; I told him he better check every damn hotel in town and make sure he finishes all of them.”
Red opened a bag of chips that were sitting on the coffee table. He had to chew them thoroughly and swallow them in a particular way because of his previous throat injury. Also on the coffee table were about ten small empty cups and Red’s Pikachu, passed out and reeking of alcohol.
Red frowned. “I still can’t believe that Leaf is pursuing this matter so aggressively after being silent about it for four years! Now she’s teaming up with the feds to bring not only me, but you down as well! What the hell do you think got into her?”
“It’s probably that bit
h Northwood. Her entire family’s been trouble for me for years, and no doubt her working with the feds and being all pals with Leaf sparked all this. How is it that our enemies somehow end up working with each other?”
“I wish I knew. But I’ll admit that we probably took Leaf too lightly after we brainwashed the populace. I guess it was because she kept leaving the region for months at a time and when she was here, seemed more content on training than anything else.”
“Yeah, son, that’s probably it. She didn’t poke her nose into our affairs for so long, I guess we just let her slip under the radar. Well fortunately, all the Pokémon training in the world ain’t gonna mean a single thing when she ends up with a few rounds in her head!”
The father and son both laughed loudly, with Red’s mechanical laughter sounding odd and menacing at the same time. “Yeah, it’s too bad we can’t do it ourselves, but I don’t want to get my hands dirty. Imagine, me, a legendary Pokémon Master, resorting to such tactics! The s
it would hit the ceiling if the public heard something like that!” Red’s Pikachu came to and joined in with their laughter, its squealing sounding strangely slurred.
Harris Teeter Supermarket, Saffron City, 6:38 PM
Lisa pulled the Buick into the parking lot of a large supermarket located just south of the Saffron City limits.
“Now what?” asked Alexis.
“Well, I know we can’t get out to Route 7 tonight, so we’ll have to stay somewhere in Saffron. Only problem is, the helicopter pilot escaped and he knows what car we’re in – I have little doubt his men will be scouring every hotel parking lot for us. Unfortunately, we stick out like a sore thumb… sadly, there aren’t too many classic station wagons like this beauty still around.”
Shannon said, “Well, let’s head in the store for right now… Maybe we can think of a plan while shopping for snacks and stuff to tide us over for tonight.”
“All right. Leaf and I will go in; you two keep an eye on things out here.” Lisa and Leaf made their way into the store.
Sitting in a café area just inside the entrance, a woman was observing customers as they walked in. When the two agents walked past, the woman ‘s eyebrows raised upon noticing Lisa’s white pantyhose. “She must be the one I need to talk to,” she whispered to herself.
She got up out of her seat and approached Lisa from behind, tapping her on the shoulder. Instinctively, Lisa spun around and assumed a fighting stance. But the person who had tapped her did not attack; instead the tall, black-haired woman said, “Come, I need to talk with you.”
Lisa still eyed the woman suspiciously, until Leaf said, “I know her, she’s okay. Let’s hear her out.”
The three of them made their way to the café area within the supermarket. The young woman took her seat across from Lisa and Leaf. Leaf said, “Lisa, I would like to introduce you to Sabrina, Gym Leader of Saffron City.”
“Hello, my name is Lisa Northwood, Special Agent with the Pokémon League. What is it that you needed to discuss with us?”
Sabrina said, “As Leaf knows, I am a master of Psychic Pokémon, and I myself have potent psychic abilities. This morning I had a curious vision. The first part of it was masked, armed men patrolling several area hotels. Then it shifted to a vision of this supermarket and then legs covered with white pantyhose. That’s what led me here, and when I saw you walk in, I knew you were the one I needed to speak with. I’ve been here since noon and you’re the first person to walk in wearing white pantyhose.”
Lisa said, “I see. Well, it’s not like they’re a popular fashion item, except at church on Sunday. Anyway, my colleagues and I are being pursued by criminals, so I was having the same thoughts about them watching over the hotels here.”
Sabrina said, “And I see that Leaf is with you. Come, I have much I would like to discuss with you. I can provide you lodging at my house for the night. We’ll take a back route there that avoids all the hotels, and we can park your car in my garage for the night.”
“All right, that sounds like a plan. So, we just follow you?”
“Yes, look for a dark green Chrysler LeBaron at the entrance to the parking lot. I’ll lead you to my place.”
Lisa and Leaf returned to the Buick. “Okay girls, looks like we have a place to stay tonight. We just have to play a game of follow the leader. And when I say ‘leader,’ I mean it.” Pulling up behind Sabrina’s car, Lisa looked at it in awe. “Wow, that is one sweet ride! Looks like a ’78 or ’79 model, in great shape!”
Leaf looked on confused, but Alexis and Shannon merely shrugged. “There she goes again…”
Sabrina’s Residence, Saffron City, 8:03 PM
Sabrina and the four League agents were now seated in the Gym Leader’s living room, which was sparsely decorated, but clean. Both the walls and carpets were beige, but there were no pictures on the walls or on any tables. The bookshelf was filled with books and academic journals all dealing with psychic abilities and research into them. Sabrina’s television set was older, as were the VCR and DVD player that rested below it. About the most striking thing about her living room, aside from the huge bookshelf, were the number of candles arranged in specific patterns throughout.
“Now Leaf, I have been aware of your plight for years now,” started Sabrina. “Having lived and trained with Psychic Pokémon all my life, I’ve developed certain ‘sensitivities,’ if you will, to the waves emitted by Psychic Pokémon. So, I immediately knew when certain psychic waves were being broadcast over television and radio broadcasts, and I was also mostly unaffected by them. However, it was only afterward that I was able to ascertain what exactly was contained in those waves, and that they were created to erase Leaf from the memories of the Kanto populace.”
“But Sabrina, if you knew, why didn’t you report it to police?” Leaf asked with an annoyed tone.
Sabrina sighed. “I apologize. I contemplated reporting what I knew to the local Saffron police force, but then I had two visions – the first was of the police chief of Saffron opening a briefcase filled with money, and the second was of blood. Just blood, splattered everywhere. I interpreted the visions to mean that the local police had accepted a bribe, and that I would be murdered if word got out that I tried to contact anybody. I did try to track you down, but you were moving around so much that every time I got close to finding you, you had taken off for another region.”
“I know,” said Leaf. “During those years I was confused as to what I was to do, so I began moving around, training and catching Pokémon in a variety of places.”
Lisa said, “Well, the international League Investigation Bureau is involved, and I can assure you we haven’t been brainwashed or accepted any bribes. I’m not sure how a psychic vision would be accepted at a trial, but would you be willing to testify now that we’re involved, Sabrina?”
“Yes, anything to set things straight. Again, Leaf, I’m sorry. I knew all along the truth and yet I couldn’t come forward with the facts.”
“No, don’t worry about it. I was the same way. I knew that I was Champion, but there I was no way I could pursue the matter by myself. If I went around claiming that I was Champion while everyone was brainwashed, I’d probably be in a mental hospital now. And Lorelei told me that she’s been investigating the whole matter on and off over the past four years trying to set things straight. And finally, we might be close to doing exactly that.”
“Okay, thank you.”
Lisa spoke up. “Now, right now the conspirators have no idea that you know the truth. Otherwise they would have come after you already. We’re going to try to keep it that way, so keep it a secret for a little while longer – at least until we get these guys into custody.”
“Yes, that makes sense.”
Leaf spoke up. “Well, onto a lighter topic, I noticed that people in the grocery store really didn’t pay you much attention, despite you being a local celebrity.”
“Probably because I shop there all the time – at least twice a week. I like the store; it’s cleaner than the discount food stores in Saffron. Miss Northwood…”
“Please, call me Lisa.”
“Alright, Lisa, I believe that you also prefer shopping at Harris Teeter… In fact, I sense that your current home may not be far from their headquarters.”
“Guilty as charged! I’m only about a half hour or so away…”
Sabrina continued, “And to answer another question you’ve got for me, my car was handed down to me by my parents – much like your first car. And like you, my parents were very meticulous with maintaining their car. I’m not nearly as skilled with that, so I actually take it to my father whenever I need it serviced.”
Lisa laughed nervously. “Boy, when Leaf told me your powers were impressive, she wasn’t kidding!”
“Don’t worry,” Sabrina said as she smirked. “I just felt like messing with you a little bit. Just because I’m a psychic doesn’t mean I’m cold and serious all the time… I like to have a bit of fun sometimes. But, my mind seems to be fatigued from all those readings. Well, I guess I should be heading off to bed. Please make yourselves at home.”
Lisa told her, “All right, but we’ll probably leave early in the morning so nobody sees our car leave your house. If someone spots it, it could blow our cover. Hopefully nobody saw us arrive. All right, good night, Sabrina.”
Alexis said, “Well, we’ve had a pretty rough day, too, with being shot at not once but twice. I think we’ll turn in too.” She and Shannon headed toward the spare bedroom.
Leaf added, “Well heck, we’ve been in a bar-room brawl today… I think that’s a good excuse to go to bed!” All the girls laughed as they headed off to separate bedrooms within Sabrina’s large house.
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