Team Rocket: Built On Lies
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August 13th, 2013 (11:29 AM).
Chapter 4: Reunion of the Renegades
Rocket Log - Matori speaking:
It has been five days since the Boss returned to Viridian City. I have to say it is not the return I was expecting. Giovanni was last seen leaving Rocket Headquarters for the Unova region with an arsenal of over one hundred agents. "Team Rockets greatest mission" he called it. The mission certainly had some lofty expectations. To control the richest and most bountiful region in all the lands through the power of the Legendary Pokémon: Tornadus, Landorus and Thundurus.
With expectations so high, the return of the Boss was anticipated with bated breath, celebrations at the ready, as Giovanni and his hundred soldiers return to Kanto with the Legends of the Sky and the control of a whole region in tow.
Instead of this sight, all I received was the image of a beaten and bloody Giovanni emerging from the Viridian Forest, with three Field Agents trailing behind him, cradling a Pikachu in their arms. Sufficed to say, I am guessing Operation Tempest was not the success we anticipated.
Since the Boss return five days ago, things haven't been quite right. He has been locked away in his office the whole time. He won't take my calls, he won't see any other agents, and he even refused to speak to Commander Archer. Other than a few calls to the Science and Operations Centre of Team Rocket, where the Pikachu was deposited, the only words that have come out of his mouth since returning are "All officers to Base, mission orders imminent."
That is until this morning. This morning there was a note on my desk from the Boss himself. The note and the huge list of instructions indicate that the Giovanni's silence is no more. Today is the day. The mission orders, the huge announcement. All Officers have returned. Giovanni's announcement is at eighteen hundred hours.
Team Rocket Head Quarters, the tallest skyscraper in all of Viridian City. Fifty stories high, with hundreds of workers within dedicated to keeping the day to day operations of Team Rocket running. The building was on constant twenty four hour protection by some of the most powerful agents in the organisation. The workers inside were not agents themselves, not even bad people, but they were people who had made a choice, who had sold their soul to the devil in accepting Giovanni's generous payslip to help keep his organisation away from the law. How Giovanni was able to keep this building from being raided by police at any moment was still a mystery to most. With popular opinion stating that it must have been some kind of major pay off to the government.
The black glass covering all four sides of the building reflected the beautiful landscape of Viridian City. It also reflected something else, the sight of the true forces of Team Rocket returning home. The final group of agents had arrived.
From as far as the eye could see a swarm was coming. From the skies, dozens of black helicopters rose up from the horizon and started to descend, travelling to Team Rocket Head Quarters. The black helicopters were impressive vessels, fully armed and ready to attack at a moment's notice, housing a number of high ranking agents in Team Rocket. They had all heard the call. Giovanni wanted all of his agents to come home.
The helicopters flew through the sky, the ominous blades ripping through the air, landing on the roof of the colossal Rocket Base. The call was heard around the world, agents from Kanto, Johto, Hoenn and Sinnoh had made the long trip from their posts in faraway regions just to hear the new mission orders.
From below, even more vessels were making their way to the building, battle vans were lined up, coming from all four corners, speeding down the roads of the usually quiet Viridian City, the agents inside eager to hear the next order of business.
Even from underground, huge transport drills were starting to surface, the scary looking drills, powerful enough to travel great distances underground, ready to surface upon any unsuspecting victim. Giovanni's announcement was being held in the long abandoned Viridian Gym, just like the old days when Giovanni was in control of the facility.
They all started to enter Head Quarters, were the journey through the tunnels to the Viridian Gym would begin, all desperate to hear the Boss's announcement.
Jessie, James and Meowth were making their way out of the lush living facilities inside Team Rocket Head Quarters and heading down the huge skyscraper towards the underground tunnels which networked under Viridian City.
As they reached the basement of the building, they followed their instructions and directions to traverse through the hidden tunnels and secret passageways that only Team Rocket agents knew about. With this being their maiden voyage through these tunnels, the trio were careful not to get lost, and James tried to help with their nerves with a little conversation, "So... Giovanni's announcement..."
That start of the conversation was not helping Jessie's nerves one bit. "Oh god, I can't believe all of Team Rocket will be their today. Every agent under one roof! Has that ever happened before?" Giovanni had ordered all Team Rocket Officers to Base, the usual arrangement was that he sent out separate agents for separate missions, having everybody in one room was usually problematic due to the number of egos in the team, Team Rocket was more a group of individuals than a cohesive unit.
"No idea." Meowth answered half heartedly with his head buried in the map given to them to help them find their way to the Viridian Gym through the underground tunnels. He couldn't shake the feeling he was leading the trio to their own slaughter, but he had no choice, attending the mission orders was not optional.
"What do you think the announcement is?" James asked the big question, a potentially explosive question, Giovanni was far from predictable lately.
"Who know, Giovanni could do anything today! Let just hope he can stay...normal. If any of the other agents see what we saw...well, they are hardly going to take it lightly." Jessie tried not to think of the reaction other agents of Team Rocket would give to the psychopath only they had seen.
"It'll be fine, we've all had some time to rest, maybe he has settled down." Meowth's optimism was admirable, but even he didn't believe it.
James couldn't help but ask another big question, "I wonder if the Pikachu has woken up..."
Jessie had no patience for her partners line of questioning, rubbing her forehead in exasperation. "James, please...can we focus on one problem at a time?"
James could barely suppress a laugh, "Alright, which problem first? Standing in a room full of bitter agents who know we failed the mission in Unova? Or how about Dr Zager's murder? Or Giovanni's insanity? Or the fact that we flat out lied about catching THE Pikachu, Team Rockets most wanted Pokémon?"
Glaring at her partner, Jessie for once was being the calm one of the group, "Ok then, let's not focus on any problems..."
Giving Jessie an incredulous look, James resorted to sarcasm. "Oh that is a brilliant idea! Let's just stand at the back with all the other Field Agents and hope he doesn't notice us."
"That works for me..." Jessie answered James sarcasm in kind.
After a long walk through the tunnels, getting lost several times, which did their nerves no good, they had finally worked their way around the intricate underground system and had reached the hidden entrance to the Viridian Gym.
Glad his map reading skills were as strong as ever, Meowth led his partners to within inches of the secret door to the Viridian Gym. Taking a deep breath, the trio stood before the entrance ominously, "This is it..."
"The moment of truth..." With a great heave, Jessie and James pushed the doors to the gym open to find...
An empty arena.
The Viridian Gym was a long way from the grand building it once was. The building was long since abandoned, not having a Leader to take over since Giovanni had left. Shocked at the eerily silent Viridian Gym, the trio ventured towards the middle of the battlefield. "W-where is everyone?" Meowth asked as the dust from the building swirled in the light streaming through the mosaic windows.
James answered, "I guess it hasn't started yet, we set out early because we didn't know our way through those tunnels. It looks like we are the first ones here."
Meowth was relatively happy about that, "Good, it'll look great in front of Giovanni that we are the most eager."
Jessie smirked at Meowth's logic, "Good enough to make up for the Pikachu lie?"
"Oh shut up," Meowth waved his hand dismissively, "Let's just wait for this thing to start."
And wait they did, Giovanni's mission orders were coming soon...
Jessie, James and Meowth had been standing in the abandoned Viridian gym for a while before the secret entrance into the gym started showing signs of life. With and awkward jolt, the door struggled open and out came Miss Matori, Giovanni's secretary, trying to open the door and look through endless notes on her clipboard at the same time.
The young woman had an awkward gate, fiddling with her earpiece and hunched over her clipboard trying to read through what looked like mountains of paperwork. As soon as she saw she has company, Giovanni's secretary raced towards the trio.
"Ahh, yes, yes, Agents Jessie, James and Meowth, there you are, yes." She flew through the pages in her clipboard looking for information regarding the Field Agents.
"Is everything ok?" Meowth asked, desperately hoping that everything would be fine and praying the trio's pathetic plan to remain inconspicuous would hold.
"Y-yes, yes, ah, yes, there you are. You need stand right up at the front." Not for a second did she look at the trio, instead trying to read the information on her clipboard.
"Err, excuse me?" Unsure of what they heard was correct, standing at the front? Field Agents never stood in such a prominent position. They were usually organised in order of importance, Field Agents were rarely ever so important. They asked a now annoyed Matori what she was talking about.
"I said you three need to stand right up at the front." Her tone getting more and more irritated that she had to waste her time explaining the situation.
Their plan to hide away at the back seemed to be shattered, yet they still tried, "But no, we are Field Agents, up front is for Elites and Executives."
Rubbing her forehead in frustration she didn't want to deal with menial tasks like this when Giovanni had ordered her to sort out every agent coming into the gym. "I am aware of that, agents. Mr Giovanni has requested that you stand at the front where he can see you."
Uh-oh... "But why?"
Turning away, she bid the trio goodbye, "I do not know, stand at the front as he asks."
"But-" Their argument was cut short as Matori rushed off to talk to some other agents who had started to saunter into the Viridian Gym.
Slowly turning to her two teammates, Jessie asked a question she didn't want to know the answer too. "Why does he want us at the front?"
"I don't know...you think it's a good sign?" James thought it was possible...kind of.
"Or he found out we lied about Pikachu and wants to call us up on it in front of the whole team..." Damn you, Meowth.
The trio slowly and reluctantly edged their way towards the front, desperately trying to think of ways to get out of standing at the front, right in the eye line of the Boss himself.
'Ahh, look who it is!" That was a familiar voice, but not a welcome one. The trio recognised them instantly and hoped that their ears were deceiving them as they turned around to look at their closest rivals.
Charging towards the front of the gym right toward Jessie, James and Meowth were two of Team Rockets most esteemed Fields Agents: Cassidy and Butch.
Plastering a fake smile on his face, James greeted their sworn enemies, "Oh great, Jessie, look who's here. It's Cassidy and Buffalo!"
That took Butch out of his arrogant swagger. "Buffalo? That's not even a name! Why can't anybody just remember my name, for god's sake!"
It was Jessie who answered, "We do remember your name, we just hate you."
Cassidy cut off Butch's reply as she interrogated her rivals. "So you're back! How was Unova?"
Desperately trying to think of something to say, "Err, It was-"
"I heard you failed! Hahaha"
Butch continued as his partner laughed hysterically at Jessie and James' alleged failure, "Not surprising really, I mean look at your track record. Giovanni must be crazy for taking you in the first place."
"You have no idea..." Meowth spoke under his breath.
Jessie wasn't intimidated by their comments, "At least we still get missions, how many years have you been doing nothing now?"
Looking quietly confident at Jessie's slanderous comments, Cassidy batted them away with ease, "What do you mean nothing? We have been rising up the ranks for years. You know, Butch, I heard we were next in line for promotion to Elite Officers"
Looking quite pleased with himself, Butch literally pated his partner on the back, "Not before time, if I say so myself!"
"Precisely," Cassidy couldn't help but questioned the trio some more, "What are you doing up here anyway? This is for the higher ranks. You are Field Agents, you should be back there with the rest of us."
"Ha! Now that you mention it, Giovanni requested that we should be up front actually!" Jessie rubbed their faces in the fact they got special mentions from the Boss.
"I doubt that is anything we can brag about!" James whispered into Jessie's ear.
Jessie continued regardless, "So go back to the grunts, losers, we're hanging with the execs!"
Cassidy's eye lit up with fury as she tried to pounce on her rival, "Why you-"
'Come on Cassidy! Calm down!" Butch dragged her back to the Field Agents section but not quite out of the range of the trio as they heard as she swore and promised death to her enemy.
Jessie seemed pleased with herself after winning that particular argument, "Ahh that was fun."
Sighing, James had to bring her right back to reality. "Glad you enjoyed it, I am sure they will enjoy when Giovanni publicly executes us later..."
After yet more waiting around, and trying to slowly edge back to the positions were Field Agents stood when Matori wasn't looking, the trio had yet to see another familiar face. Just a lot of strange, angry looking agents with bad attitudes stomping in and waited until Matori could see them and organise them into position.
From the looks of how Matori was arranging everybody, she was placing all the agents in order of rank. At the back of the gym, right where the challengers area of the battlefield stood the Team Rocket Grunts, the lowest rank possible in the organisation, mostly made up of new recruits and Agents so bad that they never deserved a promotion.
Meowth was looking at the Grunts with envy, "Oh man, look at how many grunts there are! I almost wish we were Grunts, look how well hidden we would have been."
"You wish we were Grunts? Just wait until the end of this meeting, if Giovanni has found out about Pikachu. Being demoted to Grunts might be a let off."
Standing in front of the lowly Grunts were the men and women with the rank of Field Agents. The rank Jessie, James and Meowth held right now. Field Agents usually received a lot more respect than Grunts ever did, they even had a little freedom with the missions they were allowed to take, and were more often than not dotted around the country seeking out individual assignments. Jessie, James and Meowth held some kind of record for the longest time following just the one assignment, namely "capture Ash's Pikachu".
In front of the Field Agents was the rank higher, the Elite Officers. It was these Officers that Giovanni usually had the most contact with, certainly more so than with the two lower ranks. The Elites were chosen to do the biggest and most dangerous assignments and even had some power of their own, able to decide how many Grunts they could take with them to their missions.
It took great achievement to journey up the ladder to becoming Elite Officers. Jessie, James and Meowth even held the rank briefly, after believe they had single handedly taken down both Team Galactic and the Pokémon Hunters in Sinnoh, Giovanni was left with little choice but to promote them. And believing they had experience and skills hunting down and finishing criminal enterprises, Giovanni sent the Rocket trio to the Unova region to seek out and destroy Team Plasma. However that mission was cancelled just as it was beginning, for reasons still unknown, and Giovanni demoted the trio back down to Field Agents. There would have been a lot more complaints on the trio's part had their entire promotion in the first place been based on fact rather than fiction.
And the only rank above the Elite Officers were the Executives. The Executive Commanders to give them their full title. As Giovanni's First Officers, this was highest rank available in the Rocket Empire (barring Giovanni, of course). For as long as Team Rocket has existed it was always Archer who had held the rank, along with his own minions.
The Untouchables was what Archers accomplices were called among some of the lower ranks (behind their back, naturally). It is believed that Archer and Giovanni go way back, knowing each other since their childhood. It was the brave among the Rocket Empire who whispered that the only reason Archer holds the highest rank among the Empire is because of his connection to Giovanni, and not through any outstanding accomplishments deserving of such a role. Archer is not the only Team Rocket member to hold this rank, there are three others hold the rank of Executive Commanders: Ariana, Petrel and Proton. Not the most popular of members among the Empire. Just like it is believed that Archer has the highest rank because he is Giovanni's glorified yes-man, it is believed these three got the highest rank because they were just Archer's personal friends, a very personal friend in Ariana's case, but these were strictly rumours.
The four Executive Commanders get a lot more distain among the Empire because it was such a lucrative rank. They were the First Officers, they called the shots when Giovanni was busy (which was a lot of the time). Giovanni was respected, feared even, taking orders from him was never a problem. Taking ordered from a person who isn't respected never usually worked out too well, and any missions which were approved of by the Executive Commanders usually had a lower success rate than missions ordered by Giovanni himself.
The Executives didn't have many fans within the Rocket Empire, then again, Team Rocket was hardly ever the most cohesive of units.
Standing exactly in the position the Executives should be standing was Jessie, James and Meowth. Every agents who was pouring through the secret entrances to the Viridian Gym were just staring, looking right at them, clearly wandering what agents of such low rank were doing standing in that position.
When the shuffling of many feet came from the doors, the Rocket trio looked and noticed the people they didn't want to see: Scientists. These were the men and women who had been monitoring the Pikachu since Giovanni and the trio's arrival back into Viridian City. The trio had heard nothing of the Pikachu since they had personally seen Giovanni hand the Pikachu to one of the scientist in Rocket Head Quarters.
Though their silence on the matter was not voluntary, at every opportunity they had tried to sneak into the laboratories and see if they could find anything out about the Pikachu without raising suspicion. But they couldn't find anything, it seems Giovanni had placed he Pikachu into restricted access.
All the scientists looked jittery and worried, like they didn't belong with all the other criminals filing into the Viridian Gym right now. But these men and women were no saints themselves, and were not above administering unsavoury experiments on defenceless Pokémon should they have been ordered. Had they been ordered to do such things to the Pikachu? Would that blow the trio's secret? Jessie, James and Meowth had no idea what these scientists knew, or what they were capable of, which made them more nervous than ever. Had they found out their secret? Had they realised that the Pikachu was the wrong Pikachu?
The general buzz that had arose in the background of the Viridian Gym from the crowd that was forming suddenly quieted as two agents walked through the door. Noticing the sudden silence the three Rocket agents stood at the front of the gym turned their attention away from the scientist to see what had caused everybody else to drop into a stunned silence.
It was the Elite Officers Attila and Hun, two of the most fearsome Elite Officers in Team Rocket at the moment. They were regarded with respect and high esteem from most of the agents within the gym. These two were no ordinary agents. It was said that to achieve the rank of Elite Officer you need to perform outstanding feats and that is exactly what Attila and Hun had done.
It wasn't known exactly how they did it, many had asked but got no reply, but these two had done the impossible.
They had captured the Rayquaza.
The creature that had lived for millennia, the creature that lives in the ozone layer of the earth, the dragon of the skies. Rarely ever seen, it only descends upon the earth once in a lifetime. It was widely regarded as the protector of the Earth, battling other worldly beings that dare to get too close to the third planet from the sun. Of course, these were just old wives tales.
Well, they WERE old wives tales.
Somehow, some way, Attila and Hun had captured this legendary creature. Plucked out of the sky, they immobilised the magnificent beast, brought it down to earth, and let Team Rocket scientists run every immoral test and treatment in the book. They had discovered its secrets, and it was all true. The old wives tale was proven right. Its life span, the supernatural battles with otherworldly beings, it was all true. And Team Rocket are the only ones who know the truth. The only ones to have up close and concrete data on Rayquaza.
The most successful mission in Team Rocket history.
The duo walked through the silent adulation of all the agents, and took their places at the head of the Elite Agents. Were these two the most powerful Agents in Team Rocket history? A case could be made. Yet they were still a rank lower than the nepotism of Archer's crew. Whoever said Team Rocket was fair.
As another familiar face walked towards the front, James spotted somebody else he recognised. An agent he had worked with very closely during their early Unova missions. "Hey, look! It's Pierce! Pierce! Hey man, how's it going?"
The ultra focused and serious Pierce walked straight past them with an uninterested nod before taking his place with the other Elite Officers.
"Err, yeah, man, we'll catch up later!"
Sjirachiing, Jessie had to laugh at James pathetic attempt at camaraderie. "That's a very beautiful friendship you two have..."
Jessie was looking around the rapidly growing sea of Team Rocket Agents when he saw someone he didn't want to see. 'Oh, god! Oh, god! Don't look behind us!'
Sensing Jessie's panic, Meowth and James straightened up and faced forward, not looking at the anomaly who had sent Jessie into panic. Yet their curiosity could not be killed. "Why? Who is it?"
The beast. The monster. The dark heart of Team Rocket. The abomination strode through the doors with nothing but pure hatred seeping through every movement of his body. Looking at no-one, not caring who or what was in his way. Every agent in the Gym not daring to look in his direction, not wanting to look into the eyes of the devil himself.
His true identity was unknown, his reasons for being in Team Rocket were shrouded in mystery. He made no secret of his rebellion. Outright stating his desire to overthrown Giovanni at every opportunity he got. Yet he received no opposition, no punishments, and no demotion. He was an Elite Officer. One of the most dangerous men in the world. Pure evil on two feet.
Among the other agents he was referred to as The Iron Masked Marauder. He had no friends, no partners. One of the few agents Giovanni sent on missions alone. And he was not sent on ordinary missions. Only missions in which blood was spilled. Only missions in which death and destruction was left in their wake. He was a murderer, a killer, and he didn't hide behind his Pokémon. He had killed people and Pokémon with his own bare hands.
His outright desire to kill Giovanni was shocking to most in the Viridian Gym right now, many of who look up to the Crime Lord with a god like reverence. In spite of such rebellion, Giovanni kept him around for some reason, and was able to keep "The Iron Masked Marauder" under his command. Yet another mystery within the Rocket Empire.
With everybody trying to settle down and relax in spite of the beast that now stood among them, the Viridian Gym suddenly exploded into whoops and cheers as yet another infamous Rocket agent walked through the doors. Unlike other agents who had received total silence upon their entrance, this was a special case. The popular agent took her adulation from the crowd with grace as she walked towards her place with the Elite Officers.
Jessie, James and Meowth noticed her, only once had they ever come into direct contact with her many years ago. The one who was known as Domino. A leading figure in the continuing missions to capture Mewtwo, her attempts had been unsuccessful as of yet, but she had never given up with dogged determination to capture one of the most powerful entities ever seen. Despite her failures she had never lost the respect of her peers.
With Dominos arrival, it looked like everyone was here. The room was filled. A packed house. For the first time in recent memory all of Team Rocket was under one roof. The trio couldn't help but take one last look around at ever member of the Rocket Empire. Many of the faces they had recognised, who had snuck in without their notice. Annie and Oakley, Field Agents Giovanni had hired as spies for the Rocket Empire, the trio had seen them in a failed mission to capture Latias and Latios but that wasn't their expertise. They were spies, manipulators. Hired specifically to gather information on any other teams who were a threat to Team Rocket, they still held huge resentment to Jessie, James and Meowth, believing them to have taken their job in opposing Team Plasma in Unova.
They also saw their former tutor at Team Rocket Academy, Viper. A man Giovanni must have great trust in to put the new recruits through their paces. How many people had this man broken? How many people had received devastating injuries just because he had deemed them not good enough. A scary man, indeed.
Others they recognised, Field Agent Tyson, a man arrested in Johto when he was caught at the Lake of Rage, Giovanni must have pulled some strings to get him out. Doctor Namba, Professor Sebastian, leading the science team, no doubt two men who had been looking over the Pikachu recently.
Also there were many faces they didn't recognise, of all ranks, though this was no uncommon. Regardless of the fact that the trio had been alone in their mission to capture Pikachu all this time, even when they were in the company of other agents, members of Team Rocket were never ones to forge long lasting bonds with. Yet here they all were, all these people, with barely any relationships between them. A group of individuals and small cliques. Not a strong unified team like many other criminal enterprises.
It looked like everyone was here, with Jessie, James and Meowth standing in front of them all, not a position they wanted. The quiet murmuring in the background was making them more nervous and nervous with each second that went by. They were startled when a new noise echoed around the legendary Viridian Gym: Footsteps.
The footsteps were coming from the front of the Gym, from the raised balcony looming over the heads of everybody standing within the battlefield. This was the Gym Leaders position during Gym battles, this was where Giovanni would make his mission orders.
Except that it wasn't Giovanni who appeared on the balcony. It was the Executive Commanders. The four of them: Archer, Ariana, Proton, Petrel, lined up side by side on the balcony. Noticing their appearance, every agent on the battlefield stood up straight and saluted. It was protocol...
A beaming smile that didn't quite reach his eyes grew upon Archers face, happy he was getting the respect he deserved, Archer raised his hands and addressed the crowd, "At ease, agents, at ease."
As the Executive Commanders made their way down to the battlefield to stand with everybody else, the agents already down there were connecting the dots as they realised that the four Commanders had probably just been in the company of the Boss himself. It was a realisation, yet they had no idea what it meant. Giovanni wasn't close to many of his agents, Domino, Viper and the Executives seemed to be the only ones who knew him personally. Domino, in particular, was not pleased to see that the Executives looked to be getting preferential treatment before the mission orders had even begun.
The swagger with which the four Executives came down from the balcony was overconfidence which was not rare in the Rocket Empire, though it was these four whose overconfidence was displaced more than anybody. They received respect purely because of their rank, not through any exceptional accomplishments on their part. From any Officers recollection, these four had never had much success to brag about. Well, other than the fact they were Giovanni's buddies.
Their arrogance as they walked toward the front line of the army before them was soon wiped out when they saw that they were not alone up at the front of the room. They saw Jessie, James and Meowth standing in their place.
With fire in his eyes, Archer stomped towards the trio who were trying not to look as scared as they felt. "Who on earth are you?!"
Jessie's edgy stance was soon replaced with indignation when she realised the Executive had no idea who they were. "Who are we?!" Jessie disbelievingly said before turning to James and whispering, "Umm, should we do the motto?"
"No!" James knew that they had to keep on the good side of any high ranking officer. And tried pathetically to smooth over any offence Jessie had just caused. ""Errr, Commander Archer, Sir, I err, I'm Jessie! No! No, no, I'm James! James! She is Jessie! A-and that's Meowth" He pointed downwards in his horrible first impression.
Archer's death stare ventured downwards, "Yes, I can see that's a Meowth..." Rolling his eyes, in clear disbelieve that the morons in front of him were standing in such a high ranking area. "Well, Jessie and James, why are you standing in our position?"
James once again tried talking to his superior. "Err, G-Giovanni requested our presence at the front, sir."
His unconvinced look pointed directly at them for a while longer before he shook his head and gave up engaging them in conversation.
Meowth looked at a demoralised James before whispering, "Nice job, buddy, we didn't look pathetic there at all!"
The whole Gym was filled with an anxious atmosphere as they all waited for the Boss. Some were hiding it better than others. It was all the trio could do not too faint at any moment. They had a lot riding on this announcement, Giovanni's sanity, Dr Zager's murder, the Pikachu, the next mission, all issues the Crime Lord was sure to bring up, all issue which could lead to their downfall.
The only person who wasn't standing and waiting was Matori, furiously rushing around everybody one last time, checking and rechecking her notes. When she seems satisfied that all her jobs were taken care of, and happy that everybody was in position, Matori was finished. The clomping footsteps of her high heels echoed around the gym as she walked toward the front were the Executives and the trio were standing. She had a few quiet words with Commander Archer (which the trio couldn't make out) and made her way up to the balcony were every agent was standing towards.
With everybody's eyes on Matori, Jessie, James and Meowth were startled to hear Commander Archer shout, "Atten-TION!"
With the sound of the Rocket Empire standing to attention in a military salute, a nervous looking Matori fiddled with her earpiece one last time before finally addressed the Rocket Empire stood in front of here. "Ladies and Gentlemen, Giovanni has arrived..."
TO BE CONTINUED...
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