Pokémon Odyssey: A New Beginning [T] [Best Veteran 4Q '12]
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September 7th, 2013 (11:59 AM). Edited September 12th, 2013 by SV.
See You Space Cowboy
Vera showing them a Gold Tribe emblem made Zane wonder where exactly she had got it from. He first assumed she had possibly gotten it off of a slain GT member, but the emblem she held wasn't one he immediately recognized. However, from the corner of the room, Gallant sat up, recognizing the emblem. "Hmm...you're a Fayos, aren't ya?" He asked, cocking an eyebrow. "I remember the family. Good warriors, good Gold Tribesmen."
The surprising appearance of Allora, the Gold Tribe Shadow Protector, and her announcement, caused Zane's heart to sank. The instant she hit the ground, Zane and other Gold Tribe members went to check in on her condition. She was unconscious, but it appeared she would be alright. It was always hard to hear the news of death, especially of a Gold Tribe member. Yet it was even more hard to hear the news of a dear friend he was only recently reunited with. He had assumed that when he heard of his disappeared, probably by capture, that they would have needed him alive for some reason, but as he found out, that was not the case.
The Stoneguard cleared as the various characters went about their day. Zane took to grief for a good portion of the day, but his sadness didn't stop him from helping out. He helped rebuild homes for citizens for a good portion of the day, and was on guard duty during the evening.
When night came, sleep also did, but he had trouble staying in it for too long. The dreams he had were becoming more and more stronger. Every night, he would sleep and hear the voices of Gold Tribe members, or long forgotten soldiers, or Pokemon he had never heard of. Sometimes the dream repeated, other times, they continued on the story of a different night. As the days passed, he even felt these dream creep up into the day, as he was standing guard, or doing scouting. Flashes of images would flicker in his vision, then disappear. It was distracting, but it was also preventing him from getting a good nights rest, something he desperately wanted. The longer these continued, the more he began to think that they were some way connected to the Gold Crystal worn around his neck.
He sought the advice of the Keeper on it, who confirmed a possible connection, but his words were cryptic, at best. Perhaps he didn't know and merely made as many theories as Zane did. Or perhaps he did know something, and simply chose not to share. Either way, it frustrated him. He also asked about his other way, the other possible way of ending the crystal madness that the Keeper spoke of. He wanted to know more about it, but as before, the Keeper only said that all would be revealed when the time is right. Right now, it was time for them to focus on the coming march. He was disgruntled, but Zane thought that perhaps he did this to focus them completely on each step of the coming battle, not looking beyond the other steps before the first one would come.
The next days past. Zane met with Belas and Hazone on a few occasions, where they discussed the full extent of the plan. One portion of the army would travel on and over the Lake of Lull. The other portion would travel through the mountain pass toward the torturehouse. There, a two-sided siege would occur, with the primary objective being of taking the torturehouse. The Generals, along with the thieves help in scouting, managed to find out more and more about the layout of the area. Indeed, as the reports confirmed, citizens were taken into the torturehouse every day. Ancients were positioned all across the torturehouse area and beyond. It was obvious by the layout that the final battle would occur on the planes of Valkaria, rather than the city. Reports also came from Gold City, which confirmed the city was empty of Ancients. The citizens who still remained inside the city however, refused to leave their homes. Even if it might have been all safe to leave, many still believed Auron was there, even if no one had seen him in days now. Not a trace of him.
The night before the invasion, Zane had awoken by the same dream he had weeks ago. A Roserade of the Gold Tribe, spoke to him of his purpose, of his meaning.
The original Gold Tribe members gave themselves titles because they sought to rid themselves of all attachments as beings. You are given and referred to by your titles because you HAVE no names now. You are not Pokemon. You are not beings, or citizens of the Alpha Alliance. You are tools. Tools that are used to defend Valkaria from anything and everything. And tools such as you are expendable. If necessary, you will be tossed aside. If necessary, you will be damaged. If necessary you will broken. If necessary, you will be destroyed. You will fulfill you function as is necessary at whatever cost, even your ‘life’. Because that, is what the Gold Tribe is.
He awoke from his sleep, and for a long time, he couldn't return. It was a strange thing to believe. Yet after everything they had found out, what if that was true? To rid themselves of attachment to prevent evil from return, to be used not as Pokemon of emotion, but to have none. What if they were just tools?
He pondered this on top of the wall of cape, under the night sky. He suddenly began to hear the sound of heavy walking beside him, and noticed as Belas walked beside him and also sat down. The two faced the direction of Gold City. Zane remembered as a younger Pokemon, the city was lit up enough to be visible from here. Those days were long gone, but Zane remained optimistic that one day, he would be able to sit on top of this wall, and see the shining jewel of Valkaria once more.
"We've come a long way," Belas said with a deep sigh, followed by a hiccup. Zane sat a few paces away, but still smelt the scent of berry alcohol on him. Probably gitters before the march.
"We have, General. We would have never gotten this far without you,"
"Haha!" He roared. "Without me! It's you all I should be thanking. The Gold Tribe!" He hiccuped again. "Yer damn good soldiers, ya know that?!"
Zane smiled and nodded.
"But yaknow, I don't think we would have ever really even gotten started if you haven't given us that push in Liberty Town," Belas said, as he proceeded to stand, presumably to leave. Zane continued to gaze across the plains to the mountains, hoping to catch a glimpse of Gold City, with no luck. He could hear Belas slow leave, but then he realized what it was the General had said.
He turned to him. "Wait, General. What do you mean by 'push'?" Zane inquired. Belas turned with a bit of a stumble and replied.
"Why, the letter, of course!"
"Yes, the one you had sent to us survivors of the Sentinel attack!" He began to mimick what was apparently written down in the letter. "Eh? 'We have rescued Hazone, sorry we couldn't make it to you in time, but Hazone agrees the time is now to strike back? Gather everyone to Poseida?' Remember now? I did my best to get everyone I could to gather everyone to that battle. So many more came than I would have guessed."
"But...General. I never sent you a letter," Zane replied, confused by the situation. "You sent
a letter, remember? Attached it to the wall, saying to meet us in Poseida?"
"Eh?!" General Belas howled back. "I dun' rightly recall ever sending that..." He looked down at his arm, which carried between it a large bottle of alcohol, most of it being drained. "Ah' spose I had a bit too much to remember! Hahaha! I guess I best be hitting the hay! You don't stay up too long now!" He yelled, laughing back into camp, until his voice disappeared into the night. Zane watched him walk the whole way back. He wore a confused look on his face, but ultimately dismissed it as talk of a drunken General. He smile, and returned his sights to the northeast. Tomorrow would be the beginning of the end.
Zane had no concrete visions, but rather flashes of images throughout the entire night. Visions of many Pokemon he had seen, or heard in visions. Sometimes, he even saw the flashes of Pokemon of the current time. Belas, Hazone, Penance, TrueStriker, Wildfire, Auron, Hoodhide, Dark Lightning, Guardia, Sovereign, and many more. All came by as flashes, and some spoke, as if his mind recalled their words from a memory. It was muddled, but by the time he had awoken, it was because of the light that shone upon him. He found himself lying on top of the wall where he had been laying the night before. His head hurt from all of the flashes he had seen, the dreams and the visions. But now, he had to put all that aside. Just outside the wall of Cape City, tents were being put down. Soldiers were gathering in formation. The city was being empty of all fighters. The citizens of Cape City, happy to see their homes returned, but also saddened to see loved ones depart for another conflict, gave their final goodbyes, waving flags and throwing roses. Zane quickly left the top of the wall to join the rest of the soldiers in preparation. Belas was instructing soldiers on last minute details. Apparently he didn't suffer any hangover of the previous night, or at least he hid it well if he did.
Zane was surprise by how quickly everyone was mobilized, because only about an hour after he had awoken, the time to march was now. Finding his other brothers and sisters in the vast army, he joined them as he listened to the General.
"The first army has already begun its path over the lake!" Belas boomed to the army, which was followed by the cheers of the soldiers. Sword and Shield too roared with them, eager as ever. "They will have crossed at the same time we reach the torturehouse! Soliders, remember what it took to get here! We pushed under the wall of Eternity City and took back the Grand Citadel together!" More louder cheers and screams came from the army. "We rushed through Shine City and took back Gravel!" Again, cheers followed Belas' words. "We took down the watchtowers and liberated Albia! We fought our way under the Thousand Tunnels and reconquered Cape City!"
"Pokemon of Valkaria! Only one more city remains! Let's take back our home!" The soldiers cheered louder than Zane had ever heard before. He smiled with them, pumped as ever to take back the birthplace of the Gold Tribe, the capital of Valkaria, the final torturehouse and the last city of the Silver Tribe. All together, the Pokemon began to march to Gold City.
Cape City and Gold City were only a few hours apart, even with a large force to march with, the path there wasn't expected to be long. It would become even shorter because of their current target being the torturehouse before Gold City rather than the city itself. Yet across the mountains and past the lake, by the largest torturehouse ever constructed, the full might of the Silver Tribe was waiting.
A Legend once told me that roleplaying is about bringing people together and celebrating creative vision.
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