Thread: [Pokémon] System:Reboot (PMD)
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Old December 22nd, 2017 (9:23 AM).
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Delirious Absol Delirious Absol is offline
Call me Del
     
    Join Date: May 2015
    Location: UK
    Age: 33
    Gender: Female
    Nature: Quirky
    Posts: 327
    Chapter Twenty Six

    Fortunately, Cookie knew a thing or two about first aid. The brown slurpuff sat with his tongue poked between his lips as he fastened the splints in place around Switch’s wing. The talonflame grimaced, but at least his screaming and groaning had come to an end.

    Macro sat back in his seat, having turned it all the way around to observe Cookie’s first aid skills. No one would assume a chef would have a clue about binding bones, but with all the accidents he’d inflicted on himself it wasn’t much of a surprise.

    Anchor had retired to his room for a lie down. Cookie’s first priority had been to stitch up the deeper of the two gashes. The second was merely a scratch in comparison. He didn’t think any damage had been done to Anchor’s internal organs, and neither did Anchor. But the pain killers had wiped him out and he’d fallen asleep before his head even hit the pillow.

    Macro rubbed the bridge of his nose and stifled a groan, not for the first time. Things had taken a major whack, putting every one of his plans on hold. At least Switch had seen some of Raster Town to get an idea of how things worked in System. Now, Macro would have to take the bull by the horns and steer Wildcard Gamma himself if they were to have any chance of reaching Cyan Island in the next twenty-four hours.

    “All done!” Cookie released Switch’s wing and stood up, beating his paws together. “Don’t go bumping it, okay?”

    Switch eyed his wing cautiously and tried to fold it at his side. His face twisted with pain and instead he held it at a funny angle at his side, not quite completely tucked in place.

    “Thank you,” he said, forcing a smile.

    Cookie beamed. “No problem! I’ll get right on making some sitrus berry waffles! That should help us all feel better, right?”

    With that, he waddled from the cockpit.

    Switch tentatively flexed his wing and turned to look at Macro. Macro merely turned back to the dashboard, scanning his eyes over the complex controls.

    “That thing was barely alive, was it?” Switch asked.

    Macro looked over his shoulder with a start. “Huh?”

    “The steelix,” said Switch. “It was barely alive.”

    “It seemed pretty alive to me,” said Macro as he turned back to the controls. “But I don’t know for how much longer.”

    “It didn’t even have teeth. It’s mouth was riddled with something else, instead.” Switch paused. “Is that was the toxic air does? Or is there some disease I’m not aware of?”

    “It’s the air all right,” said Macro. “It rots the air ways, often resulting in tumors. That steelix were riddled with them.”

    “Yet it still attacked you?”

    “Yeah. Either it wanted to die, or it wanted the money from turning me in, maybe hoping it could afford the medical treatment to remove those tumors. Maybe even buy some bionic lungs.”

    “Do they even exist?” Switch sounded mildly amused.

    “Oh, there’s bionic everything,” said Macro with some disgust. “You name it, they’ve made it. Some wealthier types even shell out to have their organs or skeletons replaced with bionic versions.”

    “I don’t see the point,” said Switch. “I mean, medically, sure, it makes sense. But pokemon just buy modifications?”

    “Yup.”

    “What if they have to evolve?”

    “They can’t,” said Macro. “End of story. Need to use an everstone or they’d die a horrible death in the process.”

    Switch tutted and shifted uneasily. “Why? I just don’t get it.”

    “Fashion. Plus, if you lived in the rough areas you’d find loads of pokemon with bionic body parts. A lot of them are cowboy jobs as well. Pokemon take risks if they fear for survival. Weaker, unevolved sorts desire a quick fix to boost their strengths at the cost of their evolution. Worm is one of them. You might have seen him in Pulse City. He was young and foolish at the time. No idea what he’s had done, he’s never said, but he probably regrets the decision.” He paused. “That might be why he drinks so much.”

    Switch shuddered and rose to his feet. “I’m gonna get to bed and sleep this pain off. Thanks for the nightmares.”

    Macro chuckled dryly and watched the talonflame leave the room. It was just him now. Matrix was still in the kitchen ‘having a snack’. Macro was beginning to assume it was a three course meal. As for DL, he guessed she was helping out Cookie. He sighed and turned back to the controls. Still daylight, and they were wasting it drifting aimlessly in the air miles above Raster Town.

    He shook his head and growled under his breath. “Where do I even begin?”

    ...

    Annie sat at the kitchen table, sipping at a bowl of berry soup. It was strangely bitter, and the bread to go with it was stale. But she was hungry.

    Everyone else was silent, slowly tucking into their own meals. Web claimed she wasn’t the best chef, but Annie felt it impolite to agree. Instead, she said nothing. If there was one thing she remembered from her childhood, it was her mother telling her ‘if you have nothing nice to say, then say nothing.’ It had taken her several months to realise she didn’t mean literally say ‘nothing’.

    The goldeen poked his head out of his bucket and fixed them all with a smile.

    “Do you have any sitrus berries left?” he asked. “I’m really hungry.”

    “You’re gonna have to ration that appetite, Zip,” said Trojan. “We barely have enough berries for dinner.”

    Annie let her bowl clatter to the table. “Then we have to get more!”

    “With what money?” Trojan scoffed. “I’ve been out of work for a month now, since my bar closed down. And as for him,” he nudged Waveform with an elbow, causing him to spill soup down his feathers, “he ain’t exactly turning up with pockets full either.”

    “Space pirates don’t just drop out of the sky, you know,” said the decidueye.

    “Space pirates?” Annie raised an eyebrow.

    “Yes,” said Web. “Rebels of the skies. They steal, cheat, raid, even take lives.”

    “They murder?”

    Web flinched. “That’s a harsh way of wording it. They’re reckless. Accidents happen.”

    “Webber should know about that,” said Trojan. “She used to be one”

    Annie looked from Web to the other two pokemon, then counted things off on her claws. She looked back up with a start, turning her head back and forth between the skuntank and decidueye.

    “Waitaminute,” she said.

    “We have a weird relationship,” said Trojan before she could even ask her question.

    “We all struggle to make rent,” said Web. “I’m no longer an active pirate. Haven’t been in two years. There’s a truce between us in exchange for helping one another out.”

    Annie pointed a claw between Web and Waveform. “So I won’t have to pull you two apart, then?”

    Web chuckled but Waveform picked up his bowl and closed his eyes.

    “Her help is worth far more than the five hundred credits I’d get for turning her in,” he said.

    Trojan grunted and folded his arms. “I’d saw my own leg off for five hundred credits. But I ain’t one to break a truce.”

    Annie let her feathered limbs fall onto the table on either side of her bowl. “So life’s hard then?”

    “You could say that,” said Web.

    “I blame Socket,” Trojan scoffed. “Won’t help out anyone who can’t afford it. That’s why the outskirts have virtually turned to sludge.”

    “Sludge, eh?” Annie scratched her chin. “Socket’s the mayor, right?”

    “Yeh,” said Trojan. “The one you slapped.”

    “Whoa!” Zip almost fell out of his bucket. “You slapped her?!”

    “Oh, yeh, the grabby one.” Annie looked up at the ceiling in thought. “Then why don’t you just get a new mayor?”

    “It ain’t as easy as that,” said Trojan.

    “One would have to be voted in,” said Web. “And no one is brave enough to confront her.”

    “All who have tried died trying,” said Waveform somewhat unemotionally.

    “Hmm.” Annie pursed her lips. “Then we should try en-mass.”

    Web and Trojan sat up bolt upright, the former with such force her chair teetered dangerously backward and she flailed her forelegs to right herself. Waveform’s bowl clattered to the floor, sloshing the remains of his soup all over the table and his feathers.

    “We?!” Trojan spat. “You’re saying we should do something?!”

    Annie shrugged. “You want to see an end to this struggle, right? Get a new mayor? I can offer to help you, since I’m not going anywhere anytime soon. At least not until I get my Time Onion.”

    “Okay.” Trojan turned in his seat and waved a paw at her. “Firstly, I’d really like to know why you suddenly believe there’s a Time Onion. But more importantly, what the jack are you suggesting?”

    “I’m suggesting a rebellion.”

    Web’s jaw dropped, while Trojan merely stared at her. She could see Waveform beginning to tremble over his shoulder. Was he cold? She shrugged it off and picked up her bowl to swig more of her soup.

    “Okay, Annie.” Web waved her paws as though trying to calm down a tantruming child. “You need to think about what you’re saying here. A rebellion would be… Well, it would be…”

    Annie looked up and smiled. “Awesome?”

    “Not… quite the word I was looking for,” said the skuntank.

    “Look, you said space pirates are rebels of the skies, right?” said Annie. “And from what I’ve gathered, pirates are a problem. Like rattatas back in my world. Too many of them, so humans try to execute them. Like Waveform is doing with space pirates.”

    “I don’t execute them,” said Waveform. “I turn them in.”

    “That, to me, says there’s a lot of them.” Annie folded her wings. “So. We’d have a lot of potential pirates to get behind us. Overwhelm the mayor.”

    Everyone fell silent, staring at her slack-jawed. All except Zip. He placed his flippers on the edge of his bucket and pushed himself up so he could meet her eye.

    “I can help, too,” he said. “I… because of Socket’s silly law about eating us, I lost my mum and all my brothers and sisters. My dad was killed long before we even hatched. I never met him. I… I want to see an end to all this!”

    He looked away from her to meet everyone else’s gaze, his huge eyes pleading.

    Web placed her face in her paw and sighed.

    “You know what you’re askin’, right?” Trojan looked down at Annie. “You’re suggesting we start a war.”

    “I’m suggesting we start a rebellion.” Annie folded her wings again and locked her green eyes on his. “’Rebellion’ sounds cooler.”

    Waveform gave Trojan a sideways glance. “She’s right. It does sound cooler.”

    Trojan, just like Web, placed his face in his paw and sighed.

    “Now, if we’re gonna recruit space pirates,” said Annie, “we need to think like space pirates. How do space pirates think?”

    This question was directed at Web. The skuntank ran a paw through the fur between her ears and glanced away.

    “How do they think? Wow that’s a tough one. Well…” She looked thoughtful. “They steal and cheat, like I said. And given the name, they fly around in ships.”

    “Like boat ships?” Annie asked.

    “No, not quite. But in tribute to their traditional sea-faring ways before they took to the skies, the ships are all marine themed. A majority of them being designed after fish pokemon.”

    “Like me!” Zip puffed out his chest.

    Annie leant her head on her wing claws and stared at Zip. “No offense, little fish, but I don’t really want a… girly looking ship.”

    The goldeen pouted his bottom lip.

    “It needs to be more imposing.” Annie sat back in her chair and turned her attention to the ceiling again. “Now what kind of marine pokemon would we use?”

    “Well, if you want imposing,” said Trojan, “I’d suggest a sharpedo. Most imposing pokemon in the sea.”

    “Or a huntail,” said Waveform.

    “No, no! Kyogre!” Zip thrashed with excitement, spilling water onto the tiles.

    “Kyogre don’t exist!” Trojan snapped.

    Annie pointed a claw and her eyes widened. “Pyukumuku!”

    Everyone went slack-jawed again.

    “What’s imposing about a pyukumuku?” Trojan scoffed. “You poke them and they spit!”

    “Yes! Spit like a rebel!” Annie laughed.

    “Come on, if you wanna do this, be serious!”

    “I am being serious!” Annie rammed her claws onto the table top. “We are having a ship designed to look like a pyukumuku! And y’all will like it!”

    Trojan crossed his arms and sulked.

    “Now, how do we make it?” Annie asked. “I guess ourselves, right?”

    “You need the materials,” said Web. “Which are expensive, and we don’t have any scrap metal lying around.”

    “You said pirates steal, though, right? So we’ll just have to get some.”

    “Don’t go thieving,” said Waveform. “I’ll get the metal.”

    The decidueye pushed his bowl away and stood up from the table, marching silently from the room.

    “He’s gonna go turn in some pirates,” said Trojan with a chuckle. “Oh, the irony.”

    “I never said we were space pirates,” said Annie. “We’re merely masquerading. You a good artist?”

    He eyed her with a sideways glance and frowned. “I throw graffiti up around Spool City. So yeh, I’d say so.”

    “And you can build things?”

    “I’ve dabbled with engines here and there.” The scrafty tried his best to not look smug.

    “Good. Design me my pyukumuku ship and I’ll make you my chief engineer.”

    Trojan stood up so violently his chair fell backwards with a clatter and skittered across the floor. He stuffed his paws into his baggy trouser-like fur and stomped from the kitchen muttering something about pyukumuku under his breath.

    Annie beamed and struck the table with both paws. “Meeting adjourned!”

    Web stood up straight beside the bucket, holding a wet towel in her paws. Zip was diving up and down, splashing yet more water onto the floor with cries of ‘yay! Rebellion!’

    The skuntank shook her head sadly. “I don’t know about this, Annie.”

    Annie climbed from her seat, not taking her eyes off the larger pokemon.

    “You want this mayor gone, right?” she asked.

    Web rung the towel absently, draining the water back onto the tiles. “I think we all do.”

    “Well then. Let’s ride this ship to freedom and clean air.”

    With that, she strutted from the room to find something a pirate might wear. A space pirate wouldn’t look the part in a white hospital robe.

    ...

    It had taken Macro the whole of an hour to figure out how to firstly get Wildcard Gamma moving, and also how to keep it moving in a straight line. It didn’t help that Anchor’s chair was significantly lower down than his own, and he’d had to crank it up to its full height and stand on it in order to reach the controls. He muttered under his breath about size discrimination then fell onto his bottom, running his paw over his face. At least it was moving now, hopefully in the right direction.

    There was absolutely no way he was going to try and figure out the navigation system, too. He wasn’t exactly oblivious when it came to computers, or maps, but he’d had enough for one day. It was moving in the vague direction of Cyan City. He’d worry more about getting it right on target later. Right now, he was emotionally and mentally exhausted.

    With the hum of the engine as his only company, he found all those niggling thoughts clearing from his mind. Humans, time pockets, BackDoor, DL… It was like white noise, blocking out everything else and replacing it with peace. He began to feel himself being lulled to sleep. He shuffled down in the over-sized seat and closed his eyes, letting the dull drone drag him into a light slumber.

    It was a seemingly uneventful dream that followed. Wildcard Gamma was flying through System Sky, but there was nothing there. No cities. No other ships. Just blackness. Despite the lack of anything, it all felt tranquil.

    They flew along for what felt like hours, just cruising through the night sky. Random banter erupted between Anchor and Matrix, but it was nothing out of the ordinary. He was aware of Switch dozing behind them, and DL pressing up against his side, but nothing bothered him. Everything was just… ordinary.

    Then something flickered in the distance like a star. Macro’s eyes flew to it, realising there had been no stars at all up until that point. Just one light, flickering in the darkness.

    Then it grew, blinding him and sending him off his chair onto the floor.

    His eyes flew open, and he found himself lying on the cockpit floor, his fur covered in a slick sweat. Yet that strange dazzling light remained on his vision, slowly fading out until it left a small dazzle spot that looked like the combination of a flower and a sun, its rays extending off it and alternating in size, narrowing towards the end like petals.

    He rubbed his eyes to remove the lingering effects and pushed himself back to his feet.

    What on earth was that? It had been like any other mellow dream up until that point. His shoulder hurt where he’d landed on it, and it pulsed as he strained to pull himself back into the driver’s seat. Maybe he should have lowered it first.

    Forget it. He was gonna take his own comfortable seat, or go to bed. One or the other.

    As he looked out of the window, he realised it was still daylight. A quick check of his computer told him it was growing closer to dinner time. He’d only been asleep a few minutes.

    That didn’t make sense.

    He rubbed at his eyes again and stared out of the window, shielding them from the brightness as the sun reflected off the surface of the fluffy white clouds.

    Despite how much he tried to rub it away, he could still see that sun-like spot.
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    A Fanfiction Author Who Dares to be Different
    A glimmer of hope in a war-torn world - The End
    Cyberpunk fantasy meets Pokemon Mystery Dungeon - Glitched
    Fancy some Cyberpunk PMD action with space pirates? System:Reboot
    Other Fics - SWC entry 'Rivers and Waterfalls'
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