The Tale of a Wanderer
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August 10th, 2013 (5:44 AM).
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Someplace unimaginable
Alright, this chapter finally introduces the main character, but briefly. We'll be seeing more of Team Thunder, though, and this chapter is really where the ball gets rolling.
Sorry it took so long to get the chapter up, but I hope it was worth the wait. Enjoy!
*Author's Note: I know the first part is going to be horridly short. However, this part stresses setting above all else, so please bear with me here.
Chapter Two: Uninvited Guests and Their Effects
-- Crystal Peak (a town near Mt. Silver). 36 years ago
Towards the outskirts of a very small town nestled in the mountains, there lay a larger dwelling that was cut into the side of the rocky cliff that formed a wall-like border to the spread-out town of about a thousand people. There were several strange things about this small and quiet town, and that house seemed to be the core of half of them.
The house itself was partially hewn into the mountain itself, whose rock made up many of the materials for the isolated house that was sheltered from the northern winter winds, even though they were a plague to the rest of the town. It sat on a fairly large shelf that dropped suddenly after a couple hundred feet, with a thirty-foot cliff. This was always guarded by a strong barrier that stood about four feet high, and ran for about 500 feet on either side of the house.
On one of those directions lay the only road that led to and from the house. In the other lay a path that was only narrow enough for a person or Pokémon to fit through. The other side was always guarded by a slender fence where the barrier ended, for that was really as far the house’s inhabitants went on foot.
In the spacious house, there lived only two people: an eight-year-old child and his mother. The child -- a boy -- was suffering from an unknown disease, and the doctors had given him a year to live, based on the effect it was having on him. It had been three since then, and he lived “to put the doctor to shame,” as he told his friends.
His name was Adrian Draegar, and his will was his only driving force, even when he was too weak not to be in a wheelchair, never mind not in bed. Today, he was feeling stronger, and had a small cane that he used. He was away at school, and would return home in the evening, just before sunset -- on good days. He always loved the outdoors, and often hung out with his friends after school, if he was up to it.
The mother’s name was Leanna Stone, and she was alone in her fight -- her husband was missing since almost before the child was born. For almost four years, she had to watch as her only child wasted away slowly from something she didn’t have any power over. One time or another, she nearly broke when her son went near the brink of death. She had a rough lot in life, but her son always had it worse.
“Hi, mom. I’m back.” The sound of Adrian’s voice interrupted Leanna’s thoughts. Her son walked in through the door, not even using his cane. It must have been a really good day if he was able to do that.
“How was your day?” She went over to see how he was holding himself up, and then hustled over to the kitchen to make a snack. The more her son ate, the better he would be later on.
“It’s been great. I’ve been able to go most of the day by myself.” These days, being able to pull that off was little short of a miracle.
“Wow, that’s great! Hopefully the new medicine is doing the trick. Here, I’ve made a sandwich. You need to keep your strength up.” She walked over with a tray, setting it on a table that sat next to sofa. He often dozed off after meals, so there weren’t very many chairs in the house.
Predictably, he ate the sandwich and drank some water, and dozed off before a harsh storm brewed up outside.
He woke up very early, only a few hours later. Knowing he wouldn’t be able to fall asleep again, he went down to get something to eat, in spite of feeling weak. It was a weekend, so he knew his mom wouldn’t get up for another couple hours.
He ate his breakfast slowly, and as usual went out to see how much it snowed during the storm last night. Suddenly hearing some strange knocking sounds on the door, he went to go investigate. He wondered what sort of person would show up at this time of all things.
Instead, he found a much different sort of surprise waiting on the doorstep. It was a jet-black egg, the likes of which he had never seen before. He slowly bent over to pick it up, and to his surprise, the thing was still very warm, as if the blizzard outside never even got close to touching it.
Once he got it back inside, he flipped on a small lamp, and sat the egg on the sofa, and investigated the strange thing. Having found nothing at all, he simply set the egg down on the sofa, and sat next to it, wondering what it had inside. However, nothing stirred, so he simply sat there and listened to the storm rage outside while he finished off his snack. By the time he was done, he was feeling extremely weak and tired, not knowing whether or not this was a dream. Taking the egg in his arm, he slowly plodded upstairs. Reaching his room, he simply climbed into bed, and set the egg under the covers nearby. It wasn’t long until he was asleep.
-- Canalave City, Thunder Corporation HQ. 36 years ago
“Say again, and say it more slowly. What in the name of the gods happened?” Dantès gripped the data pad in his hands. This very thing told everything, but he didn’t believe it, even when his senior staff were telling him that his main laboratory was completely destroyed.
This isn’t happening… This isn’t happening…!
“The man responsible for the sabotage of our laboratory called himself John Kislev. Not a lot was known about his background, other than what he told us. Shortly before the attack, we were able to discover that his name was in fact Robert Bruce, and that he was there to sabotage our operations. Our message did not get through to the lab, however, and he was able to call in an air strike at the same time he was discovered in the act of stealing Number Six.” Fred stood tall and composed.
“According to what little data we preserved, he was stopped and killed before the compound itself went down.” Out of all the people in the room, it seemed to be the only one among the senior staff who was actually calm -- or at least successfully pretending to be so. "At least Scarlet escaped intact with some of our best men."
“How much was recovered from the site?” Dantès still could hardly believe that this was happening. All it took was one attack to put the very existence of Team Thunder in danger. He would have to work hard in keeping his position as “The Boss” in his own hands.
Scarlet stepped forward. “Actually, I took the liberty of taking three vials of the finished compound with me shortly before the saboteur completed his work. I at least managed to escape alive -- and with the precious cargo. They're on my person, but that's the only thing of value I was able to keep."
“You’re a genius! I’d promote you, but I’d rather keep my own job.” Dantès lit up at that prospect. The laboratory’s destruction wasn’t a total loss, at least. Fewer witnesses to this particular project made for less of a mess. “So, did the Army recover anything from the compound?”
“It was totally destroyed, but they managed to get a hold of some survivors. However, Number Six is missing.” This time, Fredrick took his turn to speak. “The prisoners will no doubt be interrogated. I doubt they will learn much, though. I put in a great deal of time and effort to minimize the amount of information being passed around there.”
“Then how in the hells did someone manage to find out what was going on and break into there?” Dantès’ glare was suddenly fixed on Fredrick. However, the old man kept his cool, and simply looked at Dantès like he would a childish nephew.
“There is only one explanation: there was sabotage at an upper level. As I recall, promotions are in your department. It was not my fault that a scientist in the Central Wing was there to sabotage our work.” Fredrick knew that he had won, and he simply stared down Dantès until he gave.
“Fine, whatever. At least they took care of cleaning up the evidence for us anyway. Now that’s over with, our experiment can move forward to human trials.” Dantès frowned, though, rather than giving off his typical grin. “Or we would be able to, but we’ve only got three full vials of the stuff. Can it be replicated?”
“Not without the original subject. We’d have to extract it from our source to get more. We were able to manufacture this stuff in the first place only because we had Number Six to work with. Now it's missing -- not destroyed. Just missing...” Fredrick paused, waiting for Scarlett’s opinion.
“He’s right, you know. Besides, we need a suitable test subject even if we choose a human. Why not nail both Number Six and its new guardian when we find them?" Scarlett pointed to the three vials that she sat on the table sitting in between the three of them.
“Good idea, but what will be gained if this works?" Dantès spoke up this time.
"We get a free test subject that we can easily dispose of. We also get our Pokemon back." Scarlet’s normally pretty face was actually scary, and a chill ran down even Fredrick’s spine. "If the test works, we can take off with both and ensure that our new subject serves their purpose before they kick the bucket, so to speak."
“Alright, so all that remains is finding our quarry and exacting our revenge." Dantès eyed the vials that Scarlet held. “In the meantime, each of us gets one, as there are three vials, and three of us. If one of us is killed or captured, we can afford to destroy our copy, because there are two others. Am I clear?”
Fredrick and Scarlett nodded, and each took one of the vials that Scarlet had set on the table. All three of them concealed the things on their person, and Fred spoke up again. “What if we find the Pokemon alive and well? Will we need it if human trials begin successfully, provided the first one fails?”
“No, we will destroy it and make sure our next test subject doesn’t escape our grasp like this one did.” Dantès’ expression was cold and callous. I don’t care what it takes, we will get back on track. We will find both our subjects if they are out there, and we will secure them regardless of the cost."
When both of them made affirmative gestures, he continued. “Good. In the meantime we’ll split up. Fred, you find the subject. Scarlet, you track down our people held by the Army, and make sure they are no longer a liability. Take Giovanni with you as well. I hear he’s really good at that sort of work, so you two should get along.”
He dismissed Scarlett, who left and got to work. Then, Dantès turned towards Fred. “Go find our test subjects. Remember only to administer the drug if and ONLY if you are confident that it will work. We've only got one shot each at this.”
“I’ll do that. Just remember that most subjects will react very adversely to it -- save for a very few.” Fredrick paused. “I’ll be on my way now. I’ll advise though that we keep all successful subjects alive. ‘The more, the merrier,’ as they say.”
With that, Fredrick left the room to go on his own mission. That being done, that only left Dantès to do his own work of salvaging the situation. He had to do something to strike back at the government, or at least anything that made him look good. Otherwise, his own organization would fall apart -- or worse, turn itself against him.
Regardless of the circumstances, there was a lot of work to do. He had to plan a strike at the Army's Headquarters -- if the test subject wasn't found first, within a time frame that he would prescribe. Team Thunder always had to be fighting someone, after all. That's how one kept them going in a single direction at all times.
The Tale of a Wanderer
-- Reboot coming in the future
It's not all about the stats or the fight. It's all about who the characters are, and what they do.
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