Pokémon Odyssey: A New Beginning [T] [Best Veteran 4Q '12]
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March 7th, 2013 (1:18 AM).
See You Space Cowboy
Lair of the Madman
Penance spoke with one of the Alakazam that floated nearby him as Zane silently watched. He found he had nothing to say to Penance as he spoke to him and the others and led them out of the doorway. Or rather, he didn't feel like saying anything to him. The Golduck wasn't the same he had come to depend upon the last months. He was changed. But it still didn't change the fact that they needed his help, along with his followers. Obviously, not the entire Gold Tribe felt the same way.
"Vigil," the voice of Gallant said to him from behind as they passed through the underground city to wherever Penance was leading them. "What are we doing?"
"What do you mean?" Zane inquired of his old teacher.
"What the hell are we doing with this guy. We can't trust him. Do you know what he is? What he did?" Zane could see Gallant was still very angry about this entire situation. He felt he carried a wound with him, one from long ago, but yet never really healed.
"We need his help, brother. He's helping us. Besides, it's Penance. Before yesterday, he was still one of the Gold Tribe."
"That doesn't excuse anything. He's a menace. A killer. They all are." He retorted quickly. He spoke with a hiss in his voice, yet low enough so that the affiliates of the Madman would hopefully not pick up. "That's not Penance anymore. I'm not sure he ever existed to begin with."
"Gallant..." Zane began, but was interrupted by Penance.
"Alright, we have mapped out this part already, but we still are unable to find that gold crystal. It must be hidden." He said to them. Zane looked passed Gallant and saw what it was the Golduck stared down upon, a massive map of the underground tunnels. The map was detailed, beyond which he had never seen before. It was marked with various locations and symbols, as well as patrol variations and ways into the city above. He had no idea how he had managed to craft such a map, yet here it was. He looked above at the others for a moment, spotting Paladin up and about with the others. He smiled at his direction, much wishing to converse with his old friend and recollect, but deciding against it at the moment. There would be time to rejoice once everything had been sorted. For now, there was too much to do. Zane looked across at Guardia, who eyed the map intensely, as if to try to make sense of her own memories with the map.
"Yea...yea I think I got it!" She said, placing one claw at the bottom right section of the map, just past Old Cape City. "I think I know where it is. And if we use these tunnels down here..." She said, pointing through an array of tunnels which led around the Old Cape City that the Ancients populated, "...we should be able to get there without much trouble."
Zane nodded in understanding. Their path seemed laid out. After all of this trouble, it almost seemed a bit too easy to get there now. He could hardly believe that the Gold Crystal was so close. A sudden thought snapped through his head, as he realized that the three new Gold Tribe members, Paladin, the Ninetales, and the Lilligant probably didn't have any idea about the item. As he eyed the three of them, he spoke, "It's a sort of artifact. Something we found out about in our travels. It's hard to explain everything now, but it's supposed to be able to stop all of this. End this war. That's why we're after it. I'll explain more when we get back. Speaking of which, we should depart soon."
Zane then overheard as Paladin and the Ninetales began speaking to Penance about another Pokemon, apparently one of his minions, and how they wanted to rescue her. The Pokemon sounded important to the two of them, which led him to believe that this 'Veletra' had possibly helped them in some way. Regardless, they seemed set on going to help, even if that meant walking into enemy territory, but Zane didn't want to send them alone. "I can't let you two go out there to rescue this Pokemon," He began. "Not after we just found you. At least, not alone." He looked through the other Gold Tribe members, as if to choose a suitable few people to accompany them on the mission.
"Hell, I'm not letting the two of them go at it alone. Especially since I know one of 'em..." Gallant piped up, grinning as he approached them, "Well, well. Allora the Shadow Protector. I knew I recognized you. You're looking sharp as ever, kid." He said, continuing to grin as he turned to face Zane. "I'll go with them and help." Zane nodded in agreement, then turned to the others to see who else he could select.
"Speculum, do you mind going with them as well?" He asked, to which the Ditto immediately nodded in agreement. "Sure thing, boss man!" He exclaimed, moving himself beside them. Zane smiled, then looked at the newcomer Lilligant. "If you like, you may also join them. You were with them last, after all."
Zane turned back to Penance, speaking with him in an almost neutral tone, neither disdain nor pleasure in his voice. "If you could spare one of yours to guide them through to the top to rescue this 'Veletra', that would be helpful."
He awaited their replies, as he looked back to see Guardia scribbling a map of the tunnels on a smaller sheet of paper to remember the way to the Gold Crystal. The others prepared to depart, some of them heading to the building Penance mentioned before to prepare. However, Zane's eyes landed on the Keeper, who had been apart of the group the entire time, but had yet to make a sound since they entered the tunnels to begin with. The Alakazam Gold Tribe member sat cross-legged in a sort of meditation stance, or that was what Zane thought it was. He had kept most of his distance, except for the occasional comment. The odd thing now was he appeared to be smiling. Smiling at the psychics around, then glancing around at the many faces of the Gold Tribe, before gazing upon Zane. He smiled at him too, adding a nod as well. Zane couldn't figure him out, no matter how he tried. He still didn't understand why he had decided to come with him. He didn't fight at all with them yet, not during the encounter with the scouts, nor inside the illusion with the Madman. He claimed he was here to give counsel, yet that he had done little to do as well. No strategies of battle, nor advice about how to fight the Sentinels. Nothing.
Perhaps Zane was thinking of him in the wrong way. Maybe his counsel, his advice was for something completely different. The Keeper was tied somehow with the history of the Gold Crystal. Perhaps he would enlighten them when they got it. Zane decided he would figure it out later, returning his thoughts back to the others, awaiting their response on how to move. The sooner the plans were set in motion, the better.
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