Pokémon FULL TRAINERS (IC) Page 19

Started by Astromancer October 10th, 2019 3:27 AM
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Cubeth

a

Age 21
They / Them
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Posted 1 Day Ago
2,160 posts
2.4 Years
Bruno Dillinger
May 26, Sunday


Chapter 7, Part 2: Night Pokémon




00:00 am, Route 11

The idea was to reach Vermilion before the sun rises, but there’s no way they are going to make it when they have barely even reached Route 11’s desert area.

They haven’t seen too many Pokémon, however there’s more than a few holes Bruno can recognize as Trapinch's. It makes sense, they are Sandile's favorite meal, and those are active in the morning as far as Bruno is aware.

Route 9 was tiring and Rock Tunnel was dangerous, this place is both; it's nature at its finest, and while interesting, he has already anticipated that he is not going to have a very good time.

There's also Cacnea. Those are really easy to spot, their little crowns give them away and so do the Cacturne's hats, but there are a lot and it’s not as if they are known for being the friendliest creatures. Cacturne aren’t at least.

"Aaaaaaah… sleepy." Deborah yawns and sits on the sand, taking off her bag.

"What are you doing?"

"Looking for my sleeping bag, what does it look like?"

"Have you been laying on whatever place you are in when you are tired?" He says, starting to look around him. The Cacturne stand still, but Bruno still doesn't have a good feeling about them. “Don’t do that here.”

"It'll be fine. Remember I was hit by a car once."

"It was a toy car."

"It was about the same height as us back then, my point still stands." She shrugs and then gets inside her sleeping bag. "We are not making it to Vermilion tonight, so what better time to sleep than now? Nothing is going to happen." She says, and takes her Charmander plushie outside as well. "If you really are that worried, there! Buoy kid's Charmander will protect us. Put the doggy too, just in case." She adds, placing the Houndour one by its side.

"Those are not real."

"They don't know that, they are cactuses." She points at the Cacturne and then puts the sleeping bag on the ground. “We’ll be fine, I'm going to sleep now. Nighty!”

"Deborah-"

"Nighty!"
Bruno is unable to sleep. Partially because of being too nervous despite the Cacturne still not moving, but also because of Deborah talking while she's asleep, not as if he understood anything she said other than mentioning his name a few times.

The boy decides to get up and walk around the place, leaving the Impidimp egg inside his sleeping bag and taking with him one of the two Pokémon who would be able to do something if things go the wrong way.

"Do you like this place?"

Shir looks around her and then shakes her head staring at her trainer with attention.

"... Yeah, me neither. Would you like to be on my shoulder? I don't want you to get eaten by a wild Trapinch."

Shir nods at that and tries to climb Bruno's legs like it was a tree. His legs are already too scratched and bruised because of that and the insane amount of times he's fallen so far, as if his legs hurting for walking wasn't enough already. Bruno takes her on his arms, and while she still doesn't seem to like that, she doesn't bite him this time.

"I just have to make sure things are going to be fine. After that you can go back to your PokéBall…" He hears Shir groaning on his left ear. "… if you want to."

The Cacturne have been standing in a semicircle around them for a while now, and how symmetric that formation is compared to before is exactly what Bruno is so afraid of, but on the other hand, they haven't moved in minutes. Bruno gets close enough to one of them, holding his PokéDex on one hand and his flashlight in the other one. It's sleeping, or at least it looks that way, its eyes are covered by its hat and it's not making any kind of sound.

'During the daytime, Cacturne remains unmoving so that it does not lose any moisture to the harsh desert sun. This Pokémon becomes active at night when the temperature drops. If a traveler is going through a desert in the thick of night, Cacturne will follow in a ragtag group. The Pokémon are biding their time, waiting for the traveler to tire and become incapable of moving.'

He knows for a fact that at times PokéDex entries are an exaggeration of reality, however, this description doesn't seem too different than what is happening at the moment. It's been a while since Deborah and him stopped moving, and now that Bruno isn't with her anymore…

He looks behind afraid of what he may encounter, and sees the Cacturne from the formation's extremes have already started moving towards her.

Bruno starts running at her, but the Cacturne he scanned just now turns around and holds him with its spiky arms, not only stopping him, but also making him unable to yell.

Shir falls from Bruno's shoulder and in a rage attacks the Cacturne by slashing its legs and making it lose balance and let Bruno go.

The boy gets on his knees and takes out another PokéBall.

"Gospel, Hyper Voice!" His voice doesn't get too far, but the Gastly gets the message. His attack is successful in waking Deborah up, but also alters the other Cacturne that haven't moved yet.

"I told you I wanted to- Ah!" Deborah rolls to the left, and takes her arm outside the sleeping bag to activate one of her PokéBalls in the belt that was hidden under her, summoning her Machop who as soon as she enters the battlefield lands a direct punch against the Cacturne that was coming at her. She quickly opens another one and her Pancham comes out, and another one with a Wingull that Bruno didn't know she had caught. "I'm so sorry for- oh no, Bruno are you alright?"

"A-are you? Is the egg alright?" Bruno gets back on his feet with a bit of effort, holding his belly where the Cacturne pressed him at. He takes his other two PokéBalls to summon Klink and Bumblebee as well. A whole team battle is not something we wanted to do at some point, but counting the Cacnea, they are being attacked by around fifteen Pokémon.

"There are too many."

"I… I know." He answers. "We've battled together before."

"But not like this."

"W-well, I have… Spearow." He looks at his PokéDex, completely ignoring what Deborah just mumbled after that. He just wants to get over with this quickly.

Gospel stays in the center, holding the Cacturne back with Hyper Voice, giving the other Pokémon an entrance for their attacks.

Coulomb shoots one of their gears past one of the Cacturne and crushes it once they get to attack with Vicegrip, using Charge to build speed and strength and give it an electric shock as well. Once the wild Cacturne breaks free from Coulomb's attack, it's surprised by Bumblebee bouncing on his head, making it fall on its back raising a cloud of sand.

"Good… Bumblebee, try bouncing... on more than one... consecutively." Bruno says, panting between words and still unable to speak too high.

He probably didn't even hear, because Bumblebee just followed the same combination he had with the Klink until it got too easy to predict by one of the other Cacturne that just attacked Coulomb as if predicting the gear was headed at it and then receiving Bumblebee with a Spiky Shield.

He falls, and the Pokémon points its arm at him like some sort of gun and starts shooting needle missiles at the Spoink. He is not fast enough to get up and avoid the first three missiles and that already has him feeling pretty weak. Luckily, Coulomb shoots a fully charged Thundershock that even if it did small damage it was enough to distract it and free Bumblebee from any danger.

Shir is the one having the least trouble. With the strength of her Fury Cutter building up together with her anger, she is completely capable of taking down one of them with a single strike as soon as it gets up from the sand. However, the Cacturne keep regenerating their limbs even if their legs have been completely damaged.

"Shir, attack at… their bodies… You can take them down from where you are."

Shir nods and charges at one of the Cacturne that had just gotten up, attacking at its leg again and once it falls down, attacks at its body. The scarecrow Pokémon faints.

“Good.” Bruno takes a look around. Deborah seems to be doing fine with two fighting types and one flying type on her team. One of the Cacturne rushes with a quick punch, but her Machop is ready to receive it with Vital Throw and her Pancham grabs the falling one and sends it flying outside the battlefield with Circle Throw.

“That’s nice, Pancho! Machoo you are doing nicely too!” she cheers. “Bruno, how are you doing back th- ow!” She looks behind and finds a Cacnea swinging its arms at her with her Houndour plushie sticking on one of them. “Aw, the doggy got stuck on your arm. Here let me help.”

“Deborah, there’s no time for this…” Bruno mutters and goes back to look at his PokéDex and Pokémon. “Coulomb, Metal Sound.”

Coulomb’s move takes him by surprise. The two gears let out a disgustingly loud screech that not only bothers the Cacturne, but Bruno as well. However, after that, the Cacturne might be more sensible to other sounds.

The boy makes a signal at Gospel and then covers his ears the moment the ghost type lets out a loud scream able to be heard by all the Cacturne despite being in a wide open area. Bumblebee and Shir then get to strike them with Bounce and Fury Cutter, taking down another two Cacturne while the other ones recover from Gospel’s attack.

“Let’s try again, Gospel.”

Before Gospel could attack, he is hit by another Cacturne’s Sucker Punch, completely interrupting his attack and Bruno’s strategy. The Cacturne is about to attack Bruno, but Gospel retaliates by transforming himself into a fireball and striking the Cacturne with full force, again with the Curse and Will-o-Wisp combination from before, leaving him completely weak and vulnerable, but saving the boy’s life.

Bruno nods at him and Gospel licks him and then laughs. “Not… now!”

The Cacturne rises from the ground and runs at Gospel once more, preparing another Sucker Punch, but this time it goes completely past him and he counters with a purple beam that doesn’t seem to damage it, but affects it in a different way. Bruno looks at his PokéDex and sees the name Confuse Ray. That can be useful.

The confused Cacturne aims the Pin Missile gun at Gospel, but completely misses its target, shooting at one of the Cacturne Deborah is fighting on the other side instead.

“Now.” Gospel uses Hyper Voice again, and the confused Cacturne falls defeated. The Spiky Shield Cacturne and a few Cacnea remain fighting the other group. Coulomb shoots an electric beam at it that constantly increasing its power with their gears spinning at full speed, forcing the Cacturne to protect itself with its shield while Bumblebee and Shir take on the Cacnea with not much trouble. Bumblebee finally listens to Bruno’s advice and gets three of them, while Shir easily knocks out another three. The last Cacnea just turns around and rolls away.

Coulomb’s Charge Beam forces the Cacturne’s shield to break and now it's open for Shir and Bumblebee to deliver the final hit, but it summons a small sandstorm in its area that fades in a second, and it’s gone.

Shir starts hissing at the sand and digs her way inside, just to be stopped by Bruno by putting her back on his shoulder. She hisses at him and jumps back to the sand instead.

Looking behind him, Deborah is with her three Pokémon and her new friend hugging the Houndour plushie.

“I called him Cacti.” she says and then runs at Bruno who is just sitting on the sand. “I… should’ve listened to you when you said you were worried. Are you hurt?”

“It’s alright. I’m fine.” he answers. “It pressed me hard enough to not pierce me with its thorns… It hurts, though.”

“... Sorry.”

“They would’ve followed and attacked us nonetheless… so maybe this was the best that could’ve happened.” He extends his arms and Deborah helps him get up, but by falling backwards herself. She can get up, though. “We can sleep here now, though… They aren’t coming back.”

“If you say so.”

Bruno puts the egg on his bag now, thankfully nothing happened to it. He gets inside his sleeping bag, leaving Coulomb, Shir and Gospel to guard the two kids in case something shows up. Bumblebee falls asleep by his side, though.

“Your Pokémon did great.” Deborah says.

“Yeah, they did… They are really strong.” Bruno answers with a slight smile. “Yours are strong too.”

“Yeah!” Both go quiet for a bit. Bruno thought for a moment that Deborah already fell asleep, but then she says something else. “At least that Cacturne gave you a big hug.”

“... Very funny.”
Bruno's Party:



Bruno art by Aquacorde
Discord Moderoid · VPP Thread · Paired to PB

Aquacorde

the more we love, the more we learn // the more we love, the more we BURN 🔥

Age 27
she/her/he/him
Ankh-Morpork
Seen 1 Hour Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
11,372 posts
16.8 Years
Casey Holt
Monday, May 27, 2019 // Early Morning, Day 8
Route 11 // West
7-11. ithabise

Spoiler: it's time - lebo m

Casey breathes out.

And opens his eyes.

The morning sun warms his back as the land comes alive around him. The Braviary soars high above them, gliding easily on the thermals that its little Rufflet wings could hardly catch. Furret, curious and energetic, bound through the grass at their feet, calling Parsley to run and play. The Phanpy rolls along with them, more confident today than yesterday. Ginger tugs Casey's beard and he glances over to see a Luxray watching a few Shinx cubs as they playfully pounce on and shock two Dedenne, who delight in the electricity. A flock of racing Doduo pound across the plains, kicking dust in their wake, obscuring the Luxray group from view.

Casey grins.

Yesterday, nature was harsh and unforgiving. But this morning, it's beautiful.

Casey knows he needs to get into Vermilion. He needs to let Pepper out, to get everyone checked on at the Pokémon Center, to train, to resupply.

But he wants to enjoy this.

After walking a while through the dewey morning, a tent catches his eye, just off the trail he's following. And as he approaches, he recognizes the person outside of it.

"Hey! Mornin', Flynn!"

Flynn, lying on the dirt while holding Pokey close to him, pokes his head up. He looks exhausted. "Casey!?" He cries, jolting to his knees. "Oh my god, I'm so glad to see you right now, it's been awful! I've barely gotten anything to eat and I didn't get as much as a wink of sleep, please PLEASE do me a favor and take my place for me, I can't take it anymore!" His desperate pleads reek of his usual exaggeration, and the grabbing hold of Casey's ankle is a dramatic move. "I'm begging you, pleeeeeeeaaaaaase"

Casey blinks down at him. "Stand up, dude. What're you even talking about?"

Flynn shakily gets to his feet. "I'm talking about that… beast!" He flings out his arm to point at the tent behind him and Casey's gaze follows. The tent seems… normal. No holes in it, at least. Unlike his. "It's been terrible, but I can't just leave her behind! What kind of gentleman would do that?"

"Did you… catch a weird Pokémon?" Casey tries to puzzle out. He's not sure where being a gentleman fits into that, or why Flynn was facedown on the ground and not also in the tent.

"I wish that's what happened! For the past two days I've been stuck with… I've been stuck with…" The shivers as the world's struggle to leave his mouth. Whenever he's about to cut to the details, his mouth seems to involuntarily seal itself shut, although his explanation might not even be necessary, as incoherent mutterings are heard from inside the tent.

Flynn gasps and hides behind Casey. "Oh no, she's awake! Do something!"

"I dunno what I'm s'posed do if I don't have any information," Casey begins, but the zip of the tent cuts him off and an unfortunately familiar face reveals itself- although not as recognizable without makeup or hair maintenance. Seeing people in the morning is always a little weird. Like Gwen without her signature buns, or Jordan with his hair freshly washed.

"Wheesht, fisher loon! Ah'm tryn' tae gie mah beauty sleep- Casey?" She blinks rapidly and rubs her eyes. "Whit are ye daein' hair?""

"Walkin' on by, Bethany," he replies breezily. "Good mornin' to ya." He's not really the type to want his mornings quiet- that's more Jordan's goal- but Bethany's a lot to handle sometimes, and he's having a nice day so far. He'd hate to get irritated so early on.

"Is 'at sae?" Bethany squints her eyes, pupils fixating on the boy peeking from over Casey's shoulder. "Ah thought a certain somebody was tryin' tae hain me aff…"

Flynn yelps and ducks his head. "N-no it's not like that I-I swear! It's true, right Casey boy?" Even cowering behind Casey's broad shoulders, he still winces at Bethany's piercing glare.

"Not like that at all," Casey affirms cheerily, knowing an opportunity when he sees one. He drags Flynn out from behind him and gives him a gentle shove back toward Bethany. "Y'all gotta pack up and eat some breakfast yet, yeah? I'm done with all that and I really gotta get to Vermilion pretty quick here, so I'll be headin' off. Nice to see ya!"

Casey starts sidling away as Bethany continues to harshly stare Flynn down before exhaling through her nostrils. "Ye got lucky thes time, fisher loon." She says while slowly zipping the door of the tent up.

Flynn sighs. "You're right, Vermillion probably isn't that far off so I should- hey wait a second?" He double takes. "Aren't you supposed to be with Gwen? I thought you were her favorite boy!"

"Doesn't mean she's my favorite girl," Casey shrugs, pausing his escape. Now wait, do I even have a favorite girl? He shakes his head, countering whatever Flynn's retort would have been. "She went off ahead of me yesterday when I had stuff to do. I'm sure I'll catch up with her again later. Got her number and all, don't I?"

Flynn clenches his fist. "Well… well if she's not your favorite, then… that must mean that Gwen and I-"

He's cut off by a sudden "WHIT?" that causes him to jump and Bethany furiously sticks her head out from the tent. "Is Gwendolyn haur noo???"

"N-no, she's not… although I wish she was- but no, I swear she isn't!!" Flynn stammers through some semblance of an explanation. Casey just waves and strides away from their camp a little more quickly than his usual, catching up to where Parsley and the Phanpy had wandered.

He'll see Bethany and Flynn again later. Hopefully when they're in less difficult moods.

He spends some time convincing Ginger to skate again, before the sun gets too hot for it. Her twirling kicks don't seem to hold ice for more than the first strike, which is kind of a problem when he's convinced her that she'll get power out of the rotation. He wonders if there's something about certain techniques that make it harder for a Pokémon to master them.

He wonders how Aurelia overcame that to become the move specialist Kel says she is.

What Aurelia did or didn't do really shouldn't matter to him, actually. He'll figure things out, and do it his way. He'll figure out what his Pokémon need on an individual level. Because it's their well-being that's important, not what they can do.

However, Ginger's well-being is definitely improved by fighting.

Back to square one.

Casey takes out his phone and spins it as he walks, turning it over and over and passing it hand to hand for a few moments before he makes up his mind. A quick text to his sister and he's shoving his phone back into his pocket as if it will burn him if he holds it too long.

He won't look at it until he arrives in Vermilion.

The Phanpy rolls back and forth across the road, forcing Ginger to jump mid-glide on occasion. It's a good Pokémon. Happy and caring, listens to commands, does its best to help out. It plays well with Parsley, too- the Skiddo has taken a weirdly parental approach to it, and Casey is reminded of the way Kionte's tiny siblings would treat their dolls in emulation of the way their caregivers treated them. It's somehow weird to recognize that his Pokémon are learning from him. Or maybe it's more about being copied, in a less superficial way than Pepper usually likes to do.

He doesn't know if Pepper gets along particularly well with the Phanpy. He hasn't had a lot of opportunity to try. And Ginger seems to be upset about something to do with Parsley- maybe that the Phanpy has been in her usual place? That Parsley defended it from her? She's not very forgiving, after all. Casey glances at Ginger, keeping pace with him to avoid the other two obstacles. "I'm thinkin' about catchin' that," he says, tone neutral.

Her little outraged gasp tells him plenty. "Okay, why not?"

He picks her up and lets her stand on both his hands so he can continue to walk and still see her angry and pointed gestures, sharp and cutting and… jabbing up to the sky?

"What? No, can't take the Braviary, it belongs out here." More gestures, palms upturned. "Okay, sure, but it's all by itself and kind of weak and look, it's happy to hang out with Parsley-"

Ginger swats him. How dare you say that!

"It's facts, why're you mad about it?" She crosses her arms and huffs. "Are you… mad that it's weak?"

Ginger's not very good at stonewalling him- she gives in and shakes her head after a moment. "So you're mad that it's hangin' out with Parsley." Another moment, and she wiggles a paw. "Other way around?" There's nuance there, he supposes. She's mad at Parsley for choosing the Phanpy over her more than the Phanpy for monopolizing Parsley's time.

"Look," he begins, trying to find the right words even as his mouth speeds ahead of his brain. "Parsley's little. Like, young. A baby. Toddler, maybe. He lived up on Route 9 and didn't see much until he came with us. You and Pepper have been more places and had more experiences and met more people even before you came with me. So Parsley's more excited to see things and meet people, 'cause he hasn't before. And you specifically, you only like to hang out with a few people and it takes you a while to actually like them. That's okay!" he says hurriedly, as she fixes him with a glare, "But not everybody is like you. Me an' Parsley an' Pepper have the, uh, the social energy to be friends with lots of people at a time. So bein' friends with others doesn't mean we're gonna abandon you. Especially with newer friends- new friends are exciting and we focus on 'em more! But that attitude settles down after a while."

Ginger's quiet in his hands, arms still crossed. Casey brings her to his eye level. "You get it?"

She grumbles and hops back down, skating as fast as she can along the path. She does, he thinks, she just doesn't want to admit it.

Besides, knowing something doesn't always stop you from having feelings about it. Like how knowing Pepper can't be out right now doesn't make either of them less sad about it, or how knowing his friends have Ghosts doesn't stop him from wanting to be with him, or how knowing his sister has never once responded to a text or call didn't stop him from trying…

Anyway, logic doesn't negate emotion.

A Skarmory swoops low, letting the grasses graze its metal body as it keeps pace with Ginger's skating. Ever the competitor, she pushes herself faster and faster and she's further ahead of Casey than either Parsley or Phanpy, and he doesn't see the obstacle looming ahead in time to warn her before she crashes headlong into a solid gray mass.

The mass trumpets, scaring away the Skarmory, and more join it. A herd of Donphan surround the dazed bunny, glaring down at her as the one she'd crashed into shakes ice off its feet.

"Parsley, get up there!" Casey calls, but it's the Phanpy that is already tearing straight down the path and popping out of its Rollout between Ginger and the closest Donphan. Its tiny, shrill trumpets seem to confuse the herd, and they put up no fuss about Parsley dragging Ginger away. Instead, they focus on the Phanpy- sniffing and gently prodding it as it beams at them and trumpets happily.

Casey hangs back and watches a conversation he has absolutely no way of interpreting.

Whatever they say to each other, the conclusion is obvious when the Phanpy trots back over to him. Casey crouches down to its level. "Going with them, huh?"

The Phanpy nods and wraps its trunk around Casey's hand for a moment, communicating some sort of fondness. Casey grins. "You're a cute one. It was nice walkin' with ya."

Parsley kneels down to nuzzle at the Phanpy, and both of them are clearly reluctant to part from each other.

Casey thinks of Ralph, walking away down Route 12.

"We'll come visit," he says, before his brain can interrupt with questions like "when?" and "how will you find them?" But the Phanpy's eyes light up, as do the Skiddo's, and he knows he has to keep that promise now.

The herd rolls away south, and Casey sets a reminder in his phone before continuing west.

Aurelia hasn't answered his text.
Pepper Bomb • Charmeleon • lv37 | Ginger • Buneary • lv35 | Parsley • Skiddo • lv33
Casey's Profile | Extra Characters | TRAINERS Art | Current Chapter

Astromancer

they/them
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
35,306 posts
13.5 Years








Casey
Ginger grew to Lv 36!
Ginger is able to learn Dizzy Punch and Agility!
Parsley grew to Lv 34!
Parsley is able to learn Bulk Up!


Bruno
Gospel grew to Lv 25!
Gospel is able to learn Hex and Nuzzle!
Gospel is ready to evolve into Haunter!
Shir grew to Lv 23!
Shir learned Leaf Blade!
Coulomb grew to Lv 19!
Bumblebee grew to Lv 18!
Bumblebee is able to learn Confuse Ray!




Astromancer

they/them
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
35,306 posts
13.5 Years
Ralph Gonder
Challenge Thee
Sunday, May 26th
Noon, Day 7

Sandsy Lv 26 | Coldy Lv 24 | Tricky Lv 15
Jolty Lv 21 | Creepy Lv 21 | Greeny Lv 16
Ralph's Profile | Current Chapter | css base by Aquacorde
The purple haired girl continued her trek across route 11, and it was getting hotter and hotter and her belly was getting more and more hungry. All her pokémon except for Sandsy were now inside of their pokéballs for comfort. Sandsy was carrying the egg, as it seemed to make him happy and Ralph trusted him with it.

“Halt!”

Both pokémon and trainer nearly jumped at that. Clearly they had not been looking straight ahead for a while, because there stood now a boy, hand stretched out and holding a pokéball. The boy had almost as dark skin as herself, and was wearing gold color sunglasses and a black tie over a white shirt that was not buttoned the whole way up. A green jacket was tied around his waist, clearly too warm to wear here, and his black chinos and white sneakers were not really black or white anymore from the dust. His dark brown hair looked like it was cut in a style that was usually being well kept, by someone who had not seen a proper mirror for a while now.

In short, he was definitely a traveling trainer. Probably from Cape. Ralph actually felt like she had seen him before, but she couldn't recall a name or anything he had done there. Most likely a younger student than herself, then.

“What do you want, kid?” she asked, arms crossed.

His cheeks darkened in a blush. “A battle! You versus I, full teams, here and now!”

She blinked. “It’s a little bit warm for battling, kid,” she said, calling him the same thing again since it seemed to annoy him, and he had annoyed her by ‘halting’ her.

“I see. So you dare not face me.”

That made Ralph blush, but mostly in irritation. “Don’t you have gyms to battle somewhere?”

“As do you. And for that to be a success, we need practice. Send forth your champion!”

He was still holding his arm out with the pokéball - great stamina, that one. His eyes had fallen on Sandsy, who was looking as skeptical as Ralph herself.

“Nuh-uh,” Ralph said and just kept walking past the boy.

It took a few moments before the voice came behind her: “I see. Ralph Gonder is really just a loser Leftover kid then, like I heard.”

She groaned and turned back around. “Yes, I’m a loser Leftover. You’re a Cape kid then. Are you even old enough to journey?”

The boy was still blushing when he stepped up closer to Ralph and lift his chin up, as if to make himself as tall as possible. It was barely taller than Ralph.

“I turn fifteen in November!”

“Cute,” Ralph said. “Maybe we can battle then.”

“Is there no way I can persuade you to battle me?”

She glanced him over again. He was weird. Spoke as if he wanted to seem really fancy. Sounded very fake. Ralph insta-disliked him. Maybe she would be lucky and his team could be weak, and she could knock him down a peg or two. And if he actually beat her, she could just act like it was no big deal - as it really wouldn’t be - and force him to nurse her pokémon back to health. Yeah.

“Lunch,” she said. “For me and my pokémon.”

“Uh... “ He looked confusedly between her and Sandsy. “Palm pays for all our food-”

“Yeah, and you’re gonna give me yours for lunch.”

“I see. I feed you if you win?”

“Yup.”

“What if you lose?”

“Also lunch.”

“Uh. So unless I want to give up my lunch to you, I have to walk away now?”

“Nope. You’re gonna give me your lunch either way.”

“What?”

“You can give it to me, or I can take it from you.”

Ralph was having way too much fun with this kid. He looked like he didn’t know what to do with himself at this point.

Right. Ralph wasn't supposed to be like this anymore, was she? That didn't only regard her own classmates, but others as well. Nice person. The kind of person Arianne will give appreciative smiles. The kind of person Jordan is.

“Okayyyy, let’s just battle,” she sighed. “You go first.”

The boy's face first lit up in a triumphant smile, but it was quickly wiped away in favor of a determined stare as he backed off a bit and held up his pokéball again.

"Full teams!"

"Yeah yeah, I'm hungry. Let's go."

"Behold!"

And he threw his first pokéball up into the air.


WizardOfOdd

Kirbmeister

Age 20
Male
Workshop of Dreams
Seen 1 Hour Ago
Posted 1 Hour Ago
1,453 posts
1.9 Years

Richard Wolstenholme
Vermillion Pokemon Center, May 26th, Evening




Chapter 7-1
A Short Rest

“...Gee, today was something else,” Said Richard before he coughed while laying down his body on the bed.

Today was much more exhausting than he had ever expected. The thing with Lizzie, the sightseeing he did with Casey, and taking care of those kids who threw rocks at Pokemon was taking its toll on his body.

He was quite happy with how the day went, but it still didn’t mean his body was. After he took the kids he met earlier to the ice cream shop, there wasn’t any other thing he wanted to do but to lay his body down and get a shuteye. But alas, he wasn’t so lucky.

The thing he didn’t expect was that he ended up having to take care of the Espurr he picked up. He should’ve realized that the writing was already on the wall for this when Espurr refused to be left off at the Pokemon Center to be healed while he went to the ice cream shop to appease the kids.

And so he had to pick Espurr up for his team and speaking of Espurr...

“Pur~” The Pokemon he just saved earlier jumped on him with a huge smile on her face. However, it caused him to raise his eyebrow due to the circumstances surrounding her appearance.

“Sharon. Didn’t I tell you not to come out from the bathtub? Look at what you did to the carpet.” Richard looked at his Espurr with a concerned face, only to get a confused look from his newest Pokemon.

The man who was wearing his black shirt inside the room sighed heavily at her response.

Having three young Pokemon to take care of was something he wasn’t preparing himself on doing, and among them, only Eileen contributed to the battles he had before. And to add more problems to the pile, with how things were progressed, the fact that he had 3 Pure Psychic-type Pokemon for the entire journey forward was something that he was sure would hamper his journey forward. Sure, he’s fine about it, but he just had the feeling that this wouldn’t work well in the long term. Excelling in using only one type of Pokemon was much harder than he expected to be, which gave him much more respect to the trainers who managed to roll with it and succeed.

Should he continue going this route? He felt that he might not graduate if keep racking the Ls like this. His heart wanted to continue, but his head screamed at him to stop collecting Psychic types.

“Pur?” Sharon looked at him with moist googly eyes. She was about to cry.

“No, Sharon. I was just thinking about something else, there’s nothing you have to worry about.” He quickly cradled his wet Pokemon and went towards the bathroom again to put her back in the bathtub for her bathing session.

“Pika…” Eileen hung her head as soon as Richard entered the bathroom. She was feeling guilty that she was too focused on enjoying the bubble bath to realize that Sharon was missing from the bathtub.

“It’s okay, Eileen. Just watch over her more carefully, okay?” He pats the head of Eileen to reassure her that everything was alright.

And so both of them continued to cheerfully play inside the bubble bath Richard prepared for them. They spilled a lot of the soap water on the floor causing a mess, but the wide smile they had as they played with each other was like a salve that healed his soul. He still had to take care of that later, but that was doable... He hoped.

With a wide grin on his face, he was content to leave them be. He’ll take care of rinsing and drying their bodies later, and so he launched himself to the bed where he didn’t waste any time to bury his head on the pillow for a short rest.

Not long, however, he rolled his head to check on the rest of his Pokemon only to notice that both Victor and Madeline were sleeping soundly next to each other. Which left…

Uri, who was staring at him.

Intrigued at why he was staring, he raised himself and sat down at the bed instead. “What’s wrong, Pal?” He asked.

The said Pokemon stared back without letting out a noise, confusing his trainer. But then he decided to be mischievous for a bit.

“What, you’re attracted to me? Sorry but you’re not my type.” Said Richard before he raised his eyebrow in a teasing manner, only for Uri to scoff at the notion and shook his head.

“Ah of course you don’t, I forgot that you were so infatuated with Grace that you were jealous of m— Mmmphhh!” Richard was unable to speak more words as Uri emitted psychic energy to stop him from saying more. He spoke too much.

He gestured for Uri to stop shutting his mouth, but it was only reciprocated by an eye-roll by the Psi Pokemon. Left with no choice, he tapped his hand on the bed just like how fighters give up on a fight which led to Uri eventually letting go of his hold of Richard’s mouth.

“You’re not fun, you know that?”

Uri only shrugged before chuckling which left his trainer to shake his head at his behavior. But not long after, the Pokemon approached Richard and gave him a hug.

“...Thanks a lot for everything Uri, I really mean it.”

Uri shook his head as if it was saying that ‘it’s nothing’.

The hug helped him to relax. There were a lot of things he needs to take care of, the issue with his Pokemon composition, how should he approach the journey forward, and also about the envelope containing the mysterious Gold Star Voucher he got from the receptionist.

All they said was that the ticket was given by a member of Pokemon Fanclub for him. He couldn’t understand why though. It was baffling to see someone do that for him since he barely had any acquaintance, at least that he knew about. Strangers shouldn’t have any reason to give him that important-looking voucher.

Could it be Karl? Nah, no way. No chance in hell. He’s too busy in Sinnoh to realize I’m here… It’s not going to be the twins either, I haven’t talked with Astrid or Wilbur in years, no chance it was them either. Heck, I don’t even know if they’re still residing in Kanto. And that would leave… Nah, no way… The old man would never— “Ouch!”

Richard rubbed his forehead after Uri hit it with his spoon. The latter didn’t waste any time asking his trainer what was on his mind with easily discernible gestures. But obviously, Richard wouldn’t budge causing Uri to sigh in disbelief.

Richard’s effort to narrow down who could’ve given him the voucher came up empty. After all, almost no one knew about his contact information to pinpoint his current location, unless if they have contact information.

Which only left his uncle as the most likely suspect, after all, Richard couldn’t deny the chance that his uncle could just contact Professor Palm. The only problem was there’s a higher chance of him getting hit by a meteor than his uncle doing that, so perhaps it was correct to assume that this was a work of a stranger.

But a stranger… Like how? How would they know the person they wanted to give the voucher to? And why did they gave it to me? This is baffling...

Richard decided to stop thinking about it. There was no good coming out of it than to add more headache to his already drained self.

“You know what? I think I’ll stretch my legs for a bit. Can you take care of the girls for me, please?”

Uri pointed at himself with disbelief, as if he was asking that if his trainer sure that he would leave them in his care, even if it was for a very brief moment.”

“Of course I’m talking to you, I’m just going to the vending machine for a bit. Not going to take very long.”

Uri squinted his eyes at his trainer.

“Hey come on! I know it’s kind of crowded out there but I’ll back. Soon… I hope… Uh, I promise I’ll be back real quick. So, would you? Please?” Said Richard while clasping his hands.

With not much choice, Uri went into the bathroom to take care of the girls before stopping mid-way to make a ‘get out’ gesture with his right hand.

So Richard made his way towards the lobby, hoping that the vending machine wouldn’t be too crowded now that some time had passed since he entered his room.
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Eleanor

💖 Mikoto Misaka 💖

Age 21
Italy
Online now
Posted 1 Day Ago
2,546 posts
4.8 Years
art by Aquacorde
Arianne Chandler
Vermilion City
Sunday, May 26th, evening

Team switches

There’s definitely a lot of little things in common between Courtney and Gwen. Of course they would get along! But if that was the case, it would be her, Arianne, who would have trouble doing the same… right?

Luckily that didn’t seem to be the case - the Cinnabar girl was actually quite happy with how their conversation was going. All of those thoughts still keep resurfacing in her head even as the two girls reach Vermilion City and, after a couple more minutes, the Pokémon Center.

The area in front of it, with the light of the setting sun shining right against them, already looks crowded, with many shadows of different shapes and sizes. But that’s the only Pokémon Center in the city anyways, or so the map says…

"Oh wow… there's a lot of people here…" Gwen takes a few steps behind Arianne, nervously jittering. She made sure to return Marshall and Pix as soon as she saw how many people were present. Her Pikachu didn't look much happier either. The other girl also calls back Eric, trying to make her way straight for the entrance.

Sadly, the amount of people in the Pokémon Center makes it also more difficult to heal her Pokémon, or access her new catches. It’s somewhat of a weird sight to find a queue of trainers in front of the Nurse’s counter, and yet, that’s exactly what’s happening, even with the staff trying their best to keep up… it really looks like one of Cinnabar Beach’s food stands on a very high season day. At least it moves fast - trainers really only have to give their Pokéballs to the nurse, get a small number token, and scuttle off.

Gwen groans with discomfort, and returns Custard. "Let's just get this over with…" She plucks a different ball off her belt, staring at the device with a pained expression. "Don't worry Bead, you'll be all healed up in no time. I promise..."

Eventually, though, their turn comes. The nurse nervously takes all of their Pokéballs, storing them in some numbered containers, before giving the two girls a token with the same number and letting out a sigh. “Ok, next one please…” She definitely sounds tired.

“Well, done I guess. This also means no PC for a bit though… I hope they deal with this quickly.” Arianne sighs as well, finding herself with no more Pokémon on her.

"Yeah, hopefully…" Gwen taps her foot at a rapid pace after releasing an elongated gust of breath. "Then I can finally switch my team around." She's been saying this since they met up, yet this is the first time her voice lacks enthusiasm about it.

“True… in the meantime, we should ask for a room, right? Don’t tell me…” Arianne looks over at the other counter, the one where keys are handed out, and no wonder - there’s people in front of it too. Just one or two though… probably a good sign. “I’m going there and booking two rooms!” The girl tries to take the chance, running close to the reception as quick as the crowd of trainers lets her.

"H-hey, wait up!" Gwen pursues, cautiously watching her every step to avoid bumping into any strangers.

In the meantime, Arianne has finally monopolized the receptionist. “Uh… good evening, I’m looking for two rooms for tonight…”

“Wait. Two rooms? For how many people? If it’s just you, I’m better off putting you in a room with someone else because we’re getting quite full.” The staff member replies sternly, to Arianne’s dismay. Single rooms were something she was not used to give up on and, especially after two years at Cape, she hoped that at least her graduation journey would treat her better. “Uh… we are…” No use in lying here. “We’re two people.”

“Shared room then. Or you could try asking at the Pokémon Fanclub. Again, not much else we can do.”

"Sh-shared room?" Gwen's face turns completely red as she starts trembling. The premise really shouldn't make her so nervous since she shared a dorm room for two whole years.

“O-oh… yeah, looks like it, Gwen…” Arianne sighs once again, before quickly turning towards the receptionist again and chuckling nervously. “Shared room would be fine with me but I have to ask her as well!"

Gwen chokes on her tongue, doing her best to say anything. "I… y-yeah, I guess if I have to I'd be fine sharing with you." She smiles, although it's a little awkward looking.

“Well, alright, I guess that’s settled… I’ll be a good roommate, Gwen!” The Cinnabar girl tries to sound reassuring. “And now we just wait for our Pokémon… oh!”

Once again Arianne sneaks around the Pokémon Center, quickly reaching the queue of trainers who are given their Pokémon after being healed. Their numbers have been called and are written on a small screen above the nurses’ heads. “Come on Gwen, they’re all ready!”

"Music to my ears." She says with an uneasy but genuine giggle.




Almost immediately after Gwen's Pokeballs are handed back to her, she pushes one of them open and sends a Misdreavus out. It seems rather shocked by the large crowd initially before calming down.

"Bead! I'm so glad to have you out again!" Gwen cheers, grabbing her Pokémon for a hug. The Misdreavus doesn't seem too excited about the contact at first, but appears to grow a little more neutral as she continues to nuzzle it.

“And the last thing is getting our other Pokémon out from the box…” Arianne announces, but interrupts herself. “Aw, you’re very cute together. You really did become good friends!” She gushes as she tries to find an available terminal.

"Thanks! Although this one just kinda started looking after me from day one." Gwen pokes her head over as well. "Aha! I spy a free one there! C'mon Bea's!" Without even as much as asking Arianne if she wants to use it first, Gwen dashes over to the machine, putting Arianne out of luck. That’s a very Courtney thing to do, yes.

Arianne tries to laugh it off. “As long as you keep it free for me once you’re done, it’s all good.” She then looks around the building, looking for more free terminals, but her eyes land on something totally different. Or rather, someone.

“Psst, Richard!” Arianne walks closer to him with some coins in her hand. “Mind getting some ice tea for me, while you’re here? Please?” She smiles, noticing the boy queueing up for a vending machine.

“H-huh? Oh, hi Ari! I didn’t notice you were here. Sure, I don’t really mind.” Richard takes the coins from Ari before continuing his talk. “So you’re here alone?”

“Uh, not really, there’s…” Arianne looks back towards the terminals. “One moment ok?”
The girl rushes back to the terminal that Gwen is using, so that she can use it for herself next.

“Hey, Gwen! I found Richard waiting in a queue, you should say hi! Right there…” She giggles.

Gwen scratches her chin. "That name sounds familiar…" She looks behind Arianne to spot the boy. "I think he's the guy from the graveyard?" Arianne nods in response.

Gwen shrugs. "I got everyone I need, and he seems harmless enough. Hey Richard, why don't you buy me a root beer while you're at it!" She shouts, heading towards him with Bead bobbing behind. Another Courtney move right there, but she can’t really blame the other girl at this point.

In the meantime, Arianne is free to tinker with her team. She wants to try out Espurr and Blitzle more than anything, and the most logical choice is to swap out Alice for one of them. The other Pokémon that she sends back, well… it happens to be Mulan. There’s not really any specific reason why, other than the slight feeling that maybe, she’d be safer if her trainer didn’t keep telling her to use Self Destruct. As useful as that was…

“And done, it was a hard choice but I reworked my team a bit and included both of my new catches!” Arianne runs up to Gwen and Richard. “So. Hi again Richard, sorry for leaving you abruptly before.”

Gwen chugs down a root beer, emptying the plastic bottle within a few gulps. "That's the good stuff." She says out-loud, tossing the bottle into a recyclable bin that sits a few feet away. "Got it!"

Richard politely claps with a smile on his face before answering Arianne’s question. “Oh no, it was supposed to be me that sa… Oh yeah, you were gone before that, don’t mind me,” said Richard while wiping his sweaty forehead with a handkerchief.

“Oh yeah, here’s your drink.” He stuck out his hand that held Ari’s ice tea.

“Thank you thank you!” Arianne smiles, opening the bottle and taking a sip. “Everything alright, Richard? You got a room for tonight, didn’t you?”

“Well I barely managed to snag a free room, but I doubt I’ll be the sole occupant soon enough though, you?” Richard sips his cold lime soda.

“Oh, we’re going to be roommates for tonight!” The girl explains, alluding to Gwen, who gets a little anxious from it. “So we’re already set, basically.” She still has not received an answer for her first question, but maybe it’s just Richard who doesn’t want to talk about it.

A loud rumbling noise is heard from Gwen's stomach. "Oh man, I'm starving." She groans. "It took me hours to get through Route 11 and I haven't had anything to eat since lunch."

“Well if you both don’t mind, we can have dinner together. Of course, if you both don’t mind me joining you two that is…”

“Oh, sounds great to me! Where are w-” Arianne starts her reply, but gets interrupted by a loud cry that rang through the room.

“What’s with the noise, can’t somebody take— Oh…” Richard’s expression turns into embarrassment as he sees Uri carrying the crying Sharon who didn’t waste any time to latch herself on her trainer. Her fur is visibly wet, but Richard doesn’t hesitate to hug her tightly. “I guess I’ll have some things to take care of first, so how does fifteen past seven sounds? We can decide what we want to eat later when we reconvene.”

"Oh my god, they're so cute!" Gwen gleams with her hands on her cheeks, ignoring Richard's suggestion. "Look at 'em!"

They are indeed - in fact, that Espurr seems much more lively than Arianne’s, but she’s going to have enough time to bond with her anyway… or that’s the goal. The Cinnabar girl, though, tries to collect herself after the unexpected cry. “Uh… alright, that works fine! We can check out our room in the meantime, right Gwen? And yes Richard… those two are quite cute.” Gwen nods.

”Haha, thank you so much. Don’t you both agree?” Uri politely nods while Sharon continues to cry, causing him to grimace. “Come on sweetie, I’m here now… Nothing is going to hurt you…” Richard waves goodbye at Arianne and Gwen as he continues to pacify his new Pokemon while walking away as quickly as he can to avoid the crowd from getting more annoyed.

"I didn't think I'd ever see an Espurr being held like that!" Even while the boy and his Pokemon walk off, Gwen can't seem to help but still gush about them.

“And we’ll hang out with them again in just a few minutes!” Arianne grins towards Gwen, playing off her enthusiasm. “Now that we have the chance, though… we should check out our room and get ready for an evening out!”

TEAM:
Eric, lv. 33 • Espurr, lv. 17
Blitzle, lv. 18 • Mizar, lv. 19
Lulu, lv. 26 • Honedge, lv. 19


Paired with Ninetales and Fox 🌸 Moderator of Challenges and Writer's Lounge
Female
My place
Seen 2 Days Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
200 posts
6.3 Years
Gwen Alanis
Sunday, May 26
Evening
Vermilion City 11
"Alright, now that we're all here, let's get some food!" Gwen shouts. "I could really go for some pizza, and burgers sound good too!"

“Anything is fine by me. How about you, Ari?” He smiles widely.

“Well…” She thinks for a bit. “Pizza looks fine by me. Unless you’re all in a hurry, that is… it takes some time to bake one!” Arianne smiles, now wearing a blouse and skirt instead of her adventuring Route 11 outfit.

"I'm not gonna be in a hurry if pizza is on the line!" Gwen leads the way towards the sliding glass door of the Pokémon Center, looking towards Ari and Richard rather than what's in front of her. Bead yanks on the collar of her shirt, which briefly catches her attention, but she just looks back at the other two trainers. "Besides, I haven't had any in soooooo long! Hopefully I can find a pizza place here that comes close to what you can find in Castelia-"

She realizes probably should have listened to Bead's warning when the doors slide open and someone bumps into Gwen, knocking her back a bit. Luckily Bead is there to prevent her from falling.

Gwen places her forehead in her palm, getting ready to curse out whoever it was who walked into her. "Hey, watch where you're going, you jacka- What the hell!?"

When her hand is lowered it becomes noticeable immediately that she's run across Tucker, Winston's lackey from before. The bratty kid is nowhere to be seen at least, but this wasn't someone she wanted to see either way. "What are you doing here?"

Tucker brushes his pricey trainer gear off before he looks up. "Oh hey, I know you! We met on Route 11, but I never got your name. Mine is Tucker Kelly, and I'm from Safari!" He glances at both Richard and Ari, greeting them both with warm smiles. "I've never seen your friends before though. Why don't you all introduce yourselves?"

With puzzled eyes, Arianne is the first to speak up. “Well, hi there, I’m Arianne! From Cinnabar Island.” That’s all she says, though, as she keeps a nervous smile on her face.

“Richard Wolstenholme, you can just call me Richard,” says Richard before he shifts his eyes back to Gwen who almost fell down with a worried expression.

Gwen stares at Tucker, completely dumbfounded. How is he just gonna act like nothing happened? "Don't play the nice guy all of a sudden! I saw what you were doing to that poor Sandile!"

"Yeah, I'm sorry you had to see that." Tucker sighs. "I'm not like that, I swear. I just need to stick around Winston and keep his ego afloat because he'll reward me with cash if I do- money has always been really tight with me and my family, and this is our big break."

The Cinnabar girl raises an eyebrow. “You were doing what?”

"Uhh, I don't really wanna talk about it… it's not exactly my proudest moment…"

“...And what exactly are we talking about here?” Richard looks at Tucker with a wary gaze.

"This asshole was throwing rocks at a wild Sandile!" Gwen raises her voice, drawing in the looks of surrounding people, while Tucker gestures for her to stop talking.

“We should leave here first.” Arianne facepalms. “Like… I get that, Gwen, but we should find a better place to blow off steam.”

"Good idea!" She furrows her brows and smirks. "I wanna crush you at the nearest battlefield!"

Tucker wheezes. "Look, I'm really sorry about that, but c'mon, we already battled today. My Pokémon need to be healed up and I wanna do some training on my own before I run into Winston again. Some other time, alright?"

“Gwen… I have some questions, but a battle now would just be unfair!” Arianne tries to keep the situation under control, laughing nervously as she speaks. “Let’s go get dinner first, please? I’m getting hungry too…”

“Yeah, I agree… I’m sure you can challenge him some time down the line. After all, I’m not sure I can hold back my hunger for some good pizza right now.” The corner of Richard’s lips rises to make a smile, yet his eyes still gaze coldly at Tucker.

Bead pulls on her flannel again. Gwen clenches her fist and grits her teeth. She's not getting her way right now, and no amount of force would get her there. "Fine." She groans, storming out the building and brushing shoulders with Tucker on her way.

She doesn't go very far from the premise. She just needs a moment to cool off, which she does by taking deep breaths. "How is he just gonna stand there and act all innocent…" She pouts, crossing her arms.

After a few huffs, Gwen sees Bead catching up to her, looking concerned. "Mis mis?"

"Sorry about that boy." She ruffles his "hair", something which Bead takes a second to warm up to. "It's just, you saw what the bastard did! What kind of trainer just does bad things for money? It makes me sick!"

“Gwen, wait up!” Richard yells loudly as he runs towards Gwen.

"Gwen! Uh… sorry but…" Arianne catches up to her as well. "Please don't just run away like that…"

Muk, did I step out of line again? Goddamnit, pull yourself together Gwen!

"S-sorry." She replies, looking down at her feet. "That guy just… he really sets me off!" She does her best to keep her anger in check, despite how much of a presence it has. It's important Arianne and Richard don't think less of her over an outburst. In that case it might be a good thing she's gotten her distance from Tucker, because she's not sure if she'd have been able to stop herself from clocking him in the teeth.

“Yeah, I get that, but, you know…” Arianne tries to reassure the other girl. “More often than not, that doesn’t help in the end. We still have a nice hot pizza waiting for us after all!” She grins.

“I agree.” Richard giggles. “Let’s go, there are better things to do than thinking about him.”

"And eating pizza is definitely one of those things…" Gwen adds, feeling calmed enough by the prospect of a nice meal with friends- well, she's actually not sure how good her terms are with Richard get, but still. It's just better to get her mind off of the Safari boy. "What are we waiting for, let's go already!"




"What the psyduck kind of pizza is this!?"

Repulsed, Gwen stares at the dish that had just been handed to them by the waiter. It's different from what she's used to: rather than a simple sheet of cheese, instead the sauce is covered with sporadic blotches of mozzarella and is topped with a few basil leaves. The puffy-looking crust strikes her as unusual. "Who would think of such a thing?"

“B-but it’s my favorite style of pizza! It’s not too crunchy or dry and it gets even better as you keep eating!” Arianne looks at Gwen with a worried expression, that soon turns into an enthusiastic one as she has a bite of her own dish.

"I don’t see what’s the big deal about, I mean pizza is pizza. They’re tasty unless you completely botch the making process…” Richard calmly takes a bite of his share as he slowly pats the back of Maddie on his shoulder who was eating so fast that she was choking on the pizza.

"The difference is night and day!" Gwen raises her voice louder and louder, once again earning looks from the surrounding tables. "Pizza isn't 'just pizza'! There's all these people putting crap on it like eggs, avocados, pineapples, bananas, multiple cheeses or whatever other sick things weirdos like on their pizza and that's disgusting! It's an absolute disgrace, and worst if all, it's not pizza!" She then darts her racing pupils towards Arianne. "And if this is your favorite kind, clearly you've never had Castelia-style pizza! Just look at- whatever the hell this is!" She picks a slice up, closely examining it. Cautiously, she takes a nibble that takes her a second to feel the taste- despite it's uncanny appearance, it's actually pretty delicious. "Hey, not bad at all!" She follows up with a few much larger successive bites, finishing it at what must be a record time. "Alright, you win this round, but my point still stands. It's nowhere as good as what you can find in Unova!"

“Those pizzas are good though…” Richard mutters as quietly as possible to avoid arguing with Gwen.

The Cinnabar girl still looks at both with an expression that is somehow right in between facepalming and laughing. “I never tried Castelia Pizza but I doubt it will be better than this one, hehe!” Arianne remarks as she keeps eating her own pizza - after all, she’s still on her first slice while Gwen has already finished it.

"That's absolutely bonkers that you've never tried it!" Gwen exclaims. "It's the premier pizza, and you can get it basically anywhere in Castelia City! Nothing beats those wide slices of thin crust that crack when you fold it, and that foldability adds an element of portability, making it perfect for any occasion! Plus it's topped with the perfect amount of cheese and tomato sauce, and I mean tomato sauce when I say it! None of that barbeque sauce or garlic butter bullmuk!"

“I’ve hardly left Cinnabar before coming to Cape…” Arianne sighs, turning more serious in a matter of seconds. “But someday I’ll go there and try it, I’m sure!” She ends her declaration with yet another grin.

"Saffron City has a good pizza joint that doesn't quite get it down a hundred percent right, but it's good for my pizza fixes. Jenny and I would order from there all the time." Maybe when she finally gets to Saffron they can order another one for old times sake- assuming she ever finds out what's going on with Jenny, but Gwen won't think about that too hard. "But for now," Gwen grabs another slice, tearing it in half with her jaw. "This will have to do."

The statement Gwen said causes Richard to suddenly freeze as his face turns pale while Maddie repeatedly taps his trainer’s cheeks in panic with both of her stubby arms as she realizes that his trainer suddenly stops eating with an empty stare.

Arianne joins Maddie relatively soon. “Uh… Richard? Everything alright?” She asks, as she waves one hand in front of his eyes. “Something weird with your pizza?”

“Huh?”

"Oh, there's something weird about it alright!" Gwen cackles as she starts her third slice.

“O-oh, thanks for asking but, uh… Nothing, I just remembered… You know, something, that’s all… Haha…” Richard awkwardly answers Arianne’s concern.

"Oh man, I was joking but I'm starting to think they did put something weird in here." Gwen responds while halfway through her piece of pie, uncritically still gnawing in it. Arianne shakes her head at that.

“Hey, Gwen. Sorry to abruptly ask this, but… Cape was the first time you saw me, right?” Richard’s tense expression stays on his face as he puts out a question for Gwen in a shaky voice.

"Uhhhh…" If she's being completely honest, she's not even sure if she's even seen Richard before Friday night. "... Probably? Apparently I've met a lot of people at Cape who I don't remember at all, so I don't really know."

“...Is that so?” Richard answers. “Oh well, let’s continue eating, shall we?” He grabs another piece of pizza while laughing nervously.

“I heard Jenny?” A familiar voice is heard, as a girl taps Gwen’s left shoulder only to appear on her right instead. “Hello there, Cape trainers!”

That can only be Courtney, and case in point, Arianne gets a bit more stiff around her. Gwen doesn't though, quite the opposite in fact. Seeing the redhead only seems to loosen her movements. "Well, look who it is!" She flashes a smirk towards her, feeling invigorated.

“Hi, Courtney! Fancy seeing you here.” Richard politely smiles while Maddie waves at her.

“Oh, hi.” Arianne’s greeting is definitely the least exciting. Courtney doesn’t seem to pick up on her, though. “Speaking of fancy, this is a pretty fancy place - it’s strange to see you here, Gwen!” She smirks.

"Don't even get me started! When I heard there was a pizza place around here I didn't think it'd be this!" Gwen points to the half slice she holds in her hand before tossing it in her jaw, rather foolishly deciding to speak despite that. "'Ets mofing ike I as opin fer!"

The redhead laughs at that. “Pft! As expected… though to be fair, it was Sarah’s idea to come here tonight. She’s at our own table because she’s slow at eating, meanwhile I just came to say hi while I wait on the dessert.”

“Oh… what did you say, Gwen?” Arianne asks instead, looking slightly embarrassed.

“Swallow your food first…” Richard looks at Gwen with a concerned look while Maddie bobs her head in agreement.

She probably should stop talking with her mouth full. "I said, it's nothing like I was hoping for! I'm from Unova, and we have some of the best damn pizza in the world! This is just pretentious!"

“Yeah sure. You’re the imitators, deal with it!” Courtney replies smugly. “You two also agree with me, right?” She points towards Arianne and Richard. The girl timidly nods, before taking her eyes off the redhead once again.

"Imitators!?!?" Gwen's eyes flare up and she jolts up from her seat. "That's one of Unova's many proud regional dishes, and you call us imitators!? How dare you!"

“Uh… Gwen?” Richard’s face grimaces as he predicts how big of a commotion that is going to go down at that point.

"Are you trying to pick a fight or something?"

“Teehee…” Courtney cheers. “Maybe.”

Despite her outward emotions, Gwen finds this sort of interaction- for a lack of a better term- kind of fun. It's different from Bethany, where she's always trying to take her down a peg, and it's not like her argument with Casey where a friendship was at risk. Pizza is important to her, but it's not something she's losing a friend over. "Well in that case I have three new Pokémon on me that I've just been dying to show off!" She plucks a Pokeball off her belt and holds it close to her face. "And I'm not about to lose to somebody who puts leaves on their pizza!"

“Oh, I can’t wait! I got stronger as well.” Courtney doesn’t budge, still with that smug smile on her face. “Then again, if we’re still talking about pizza, you’re severely outnumbered…”

Arianne rolls her eyes as the redhead fixes her own eyes on her, but ends up nodding, too.

"I say we take this somewhere else then so that way my Pokémon really have space to go wild! Just…" Gwen reaches over for two slices. "Lemme take these for the road."

“I thought you would wait until we’re done?” Arianne chimes in once again, pointing out at the fact that neither her nor Richard had finished their pizza. “Also, you said it yourself, Gwen! This is not exactly meant for the road, you know…”

“Hah! You’re just afraid of ruining your skirt.” Courtney giggles. “It’s fine, Ari! Now, about the fight…”

Gwen's first instinct is to bring up the Pokémon Center, but it was a bit too packed for her liking. Besides, any battlefields there are probably all occupied. "Uh, is there anywhere to battle besides the Pokémon Center?

“Hehe… we’ll be fine anywhere.” Courtney smirks.

“Oh boy, this is going to be a long night.” Richard smiles looking at the situation.


CCS and art by Aquacorde
NNID: Bluekirby2
3DS FC: 3050-8098-0622

Astromancer

they/them
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
35,306 posts
13.5 Years
Ralph Gonder
Battle Thou
Sunday, May 26th
Noon, Day 7

Sandsy Lv 26 | Coldy Lv 24 | Tricky Lv 15
Jolty Lv 21 | Creepy Lv 21 | Greeny Lv 16
Ralph's Profile | Current Chapter | css base by Aquacorde
The boy sends out a tall, lean, blue pokémon that Ralph easily recognizes as a Golduck. This would make some educated trainers hesitate a bit; Psyducks have to reach a higher power level in order to manage to evolve than for examples Sandshrews or Rattatas. And Ralph did pay some attention in battle focused classes, so she's well aware that Golduck has evolved once and that this boy either caught a strong pokémon on Route 12, or somehow traded for it, or that he's actually trained his starter to this level.

But she didn't pay enough attention to be too worried now. She figures that electricity beats water, and that evolution stages aren't the be-all and end-all of battling. So Jolty is sent out to face the duck.

The boy doesn't seem too worried when the Elekid appears and makes a few grinning jumps, as if to warm up. He takes out his pokédex and presses a few things on it, and seconds pass.

"Uh. Are you one of those kids who constantly check everything with their pokédex?" Ralph drawls.

"It's a good habit. One must be aware of what's going on. I know that your Elekid's estimated power level is vastly inferior to that of my Golduck's. As such, this fight will be mine. Are you sure you don't want to send out a stronger pokémon?"

Ralph raises her eyebrows and meets Jolty's face. The pokémon just blinks, then shrugs with another grin. He doesn't worry too much. Neither will she. Numbers can't be all there is.

"Nah, we good."

"Your choice. Then, we shall-"

"Thunder Wave!"

Jolty waves his arms up, and Ralph hopes that the boy will be too busy chatting in his annoying way to be prepared enough for her quick assault. Water type or not, with Jolty it's always proven an effective plan to try to paralyze the opponent at least partially at the start of the battle. She isn't going to change a successful strategy unless she has to.

He does seem to halt himself and think hard about how to counter this though, but his thought process is either too slow, or he fails to think of a good counter at all, because Jolty's attack hits Golduck even as the blue pokémon tries to dive away. It stumbles, the electricity starting to grip its muscles sporadically. But it manages to get up, and turns momentarily back to its trainer to wait for new orders.

"Sorry, did I interrupt you?" Ralph leers.

"Use Water Pulse!"

Golduck reacts immediately, summoning a blob of water seemingly out of thin air and cascading it towards Jolty in pulses.

He means serious business.

As the water pulses over Jolty, clearly hitting him hard, Ralph carefully watches her pokémon. Water Pulse has a strange pulsating way that can easily confuse pokémon who don't focus properly. What focuses Jolty? Fun and lightning does.

"Shockwave!"

This move doesn't even need much focus. Ralph makes sure that she's out of harms way as Jolty gives off a pulse that's only loosely aimed but hits its wet target easily enough. Golduck is zapped once more, and stumbles. Instead of keeping its eyes on its opponent, Golduck once again turns back to look at the boy in anticipation. That strikes Ralph as odd. But convenient for her, as the boy seems to be thinking hard and glancing at his pokédex.

Ralph has looked at her own pokédex way less than she maybe should have on this journey. She memorizes her pokémon's moves by heart every day anyways.

"Quick Attack!" she bellows, and Jolty smiles as he dashes forward.

He strikes the duck with a tackle in its side and leaps back only a short distance.

"Use Psybeam!" the boy shouts, and Golduck swiftly responds, beaming a peculiar ray at the Elekid to push it back further.

Jolty seems a bit unstable at this point. He's probably confused by now, Ralph figures. Golducks have tricksy tricks with their psychic powers. Ralph prefers more physical tricks.

"Low Kick!"

Unfortunately, Jolty is indeed too confused to pull it off correctly, and ends up tripping himself in front of the duck instead of kicking its legs. Golduck actually bursts into laughter at that. And Jolty is blushing?

"Dude, what's going on, get a grip!" Ralph calls out. "Shockwave yourself if you gotta!"

Jolty jumps back up and shakes his head, but that ends up confusing him even more. On the other side of the battle area, the boy is grinning proudly. Ralph isn't going to acknowledge that; she just think he's still slow and stupid for not taking the opportunity to counter attack.

"Shockwave, I said!"

Jolty lets the burst go, and Golduck is struck once more. And he does seem more grounded now as well, eyes back peeled straight at the now faltering duck.

"Use Zen Headbutt!"

Golduck bows down and charges its head up with the strange psychic power before ramming it down into Jolty's head forcefully. That knocks the electric pokémon out at last, and Ralph groans as she returns him through his pokéball in a flash of light.

"I told you that the battle was in my bag," the boy says triumphantly. "Power difference is real."

"Skill difference too. Look at your duck, man. She's barely standing up herself at this point."

Ralph is right, and the boy seems to understand that. He harrumphs, but does not return Golduck. "She is not out yet. We shall strive onwards!"

"Is this, like, your only strong pokémon perhaps? And you've gotten her to evolve by only using her so far?"

The boy blushes. "No! I have more pokémon and they are ready to fight too!"

"Okay, but you wanna keep going with Golduck for now?"

"I do! Right, Golduck?"

The duck looks tired, but gives her trainer a thumbs-up.

"Alrighty. Tricky, let's go!"

Ralph's most newest capture enters the stage, and he looks very nervous facing the bigger, stronger pokémon. He starts to shudder immediately.

"It seems you have been training too many pokémon," the boy comments, seemingly trying to get a read on Tricky in his pokédex. "Yours keep being of low estimated power level."

Ralph just rolls her eyes before turning to her own pokémon with an encouraging grin. "I promise you've got this. Disarming Voice!"

Tricky nods and gives out a strange, long shout that Golduck doesn't even try to avoid. She slams her hands over her ears, but it's no use. Within seconds, she lies on the ground, knocked out by the tiny Ralts' single move.

"Oh..." the boy says, walking up to Golduck and cradling her head in his arms briefly before sending her back into the pokéball at last.

"Dude, she's not dead," Ralph says, hands on her hips.

"She fought valiantly. I am showing my support."

"She's knocked out."

"You're a bit of a monster, aren't you?"

"Sure," Ralph sighs. "I'm a monster who saw that your Golduck and you are super close emotionally, and knowing that my Ralts has a move that does emotional damage specifically, and knowing she was already very tired, well that was just an easy shot."

The boy stands up and blinks, thinking her reasoning over for a while. "I would have reasoned otherwise then," he says at last.

"Oh?"

"Since our emotional bond is so strong, using an attack that does emotional damage should be less effective on us. As we are strong."

"Or you're just wimps. Whatever," Ralph leers and shrugs.

The boy clears his throat again. "This isn't over yet."

"Awh, man, I'm so hungry though," Ralph complains.

"Shuppet, go!"

A small, gray ghost with big curious glowing eyes appears in mid-air, and Ralph is immediately interested - feeling like she's summoned her inner Gwen all of a sudden.

"That's insanely cute, to be honest," she says. "Did you find it in the graveyard in Lavender?"

"We met there, yes," the boy says, now proud again.

He and the Shuppet turn to look at each other encouragingly. Another strong bond, Ralph notes. He seems to care a lot about his pokémon. Sort of like Jordan and his Pidgeotto. Or Casey.

Don't get distracted now.

"Now who's playing with type advantages?" Ralph scoffs. "Are you gonna let me attack first again?"

"My Shuppet, use Night Shade!"

"Didn't think so."



super short level update as there's only this post

Jolty grew to Lv 23! Can learn Electro Ball.
Tricky grew to Lv 16!

Groc

Age 30
Male
Arizona, USA
Seen 1 Day Ago
Posted 4 Days Ago
1,529 posts
10.9 Years
Vera Hill
Chapter 7 - Gold Star
Vermillion City; Sunday, May 27th



It's later than Vera would have liked, but she finally arrives at the Pokémon Center. After her battle with Gwen, she'd gone out of her way to avoid the road so she wouldn't run into the girl again. Unfortunately, that meant more walking, more time in the sun, and more wild Pokémon to deal with. So she arrives at the Center tired, hot, hungry, and in a bad mood.

"Oh, come on! You don't have any rooms available?" Vera pounds her fist on the counter, but the receptionist isn't fazed.

"I'm sorry, Miss, but there's quite a large number of visiting trainers looking for rooms." She's very calm, maintaining her professional composure.

Vera shudders at the reminder, not that she needed it. That's another negative for her, all these people packed into one area. The constant noise, the sheer pressure in the air, having to fight through the crowd...

"Please, isn't there anything you can do? Where am I supposed to stay?"

The woman's expression softens, but she shakes her head. "I'm sorry, but unless you're willing to share a room with someone here, you'll have to find somewhere else to stay. I can recommend a few hotels nearby, maybe one of them has a vacancy?"

Share? Not likely. Maybe if you had a friend or two, you could... A tiny voice whispers in her mind, but she metaphorically smothers it with a pillow, putting all thoughts of any hypothetical classmates out of her mind. "Just... let me know when my Pokémon are better, will you? I'll take my chances elsewhere."

She heads over to the café, but she can't even go there, there are so many people. With no other options, she takes a seat in the waiting room, putting her large backpack in her lap so she can sit more comfortably, but also to hide behind.

While she's waiting, she checks her pockets for something to fidget with, anything to occupy her hands and her mind. She finds the Gold Star Voucher she'd gotten from that ridiculous Fan Club member, vaguely recalling that he'd asked her to visit. He'd also given her the Voucher as a reward, so perhaps she could get something out of visiting there. It might be better to go in the morning, after she's rested. But then again...

"Vera Hill, your Pokémon are ready to be picked up. Vera Hill, your Pokémon are ready." The speaker quietly announces.

Stuffing the Voucher back into her pocket, Vera awkwardly slings her pack onto her back and heads to the desk. She thanks the receptionist before hurrying out of the crowded building and into the slightly less crowded streets.

☆☆Soon!☆☆

Vera looks up at the Fan Club building. She wasn't sure what she expected, but this building rivals five star hotels for "fanciest building she's ever seen". She feels a little self-conscious even going inside, suddenly acutely aware of her dusty boots and ragged old flannel.

"Excuse me, can I help you?" The man at the door "greets" her skeptically.

Feeling attacked before she'd even stepped foot inside, Vera falls back on a tried and true defensive tactic: lying. "Oh, yes, that would be wonderful! I have had simply the longest day! I was on one of those lovely Pokémon Safaris on Route 11, but when I stopped to get a closer look, the bus left without me!" She pouts, looking at the doorman with sad eyes.

"When they said you could get closer to nature, this is not what I expected. I just want to go inside, cash out my voucher, and try to enjoy the rest of my day." She presents her Voucher to the man.

The man's eyes had started to glaze as she spoke, as though he was used to hearing attitude like hers from regular clients. But at the sight of her Voucher, his demeanor changed. "Oh, that's a Gold Star! I apologize, ma'am, I didn't realize you were a V.I.P.!"

Wait, a what now?

He opens the door for her, ushering her inside. "Right this way ma'am, just head to the desk and they'll have your room ready in no time!"

What just happened? Vera follows his instructions, confused but oddly content. After all, it's about time she started getting the respect she deserves!

The man behind the desk looks her over as she approaches, probably as skeptical as the doorman. "Good evening, desk attendant! I'm told that you have..." she dramatically shows the Voucher, "a room for me?"

The receptionist nods in sudden understanding. "I see, you have a Gold Star Voucher. Quite a few of those lately..." He mutters under his breath as he accepts the voucher, handing Vera a key in exchange. "Here you are, you'll be in room 42. Your voucher gets you access to a room and all of our amenities for the next 24 hours. Enjoy your stay!"

She accepts the key, not letting his mumbled comment ruin her good mood. It only gets better once she actually gets to the room. A full bed, soft carpeted floor, even a bath! Maybe this place isn't so bad after all. It almost makes her regret her insulting comments earlier.

She lets her Pokémon out as she drops her backpack by the door and kicks off her boots. Goblin immediately starts rummaging through the room, Bonnie staying by his side to limit the amount of mischief he makes. Squitch floats aimlessly, while Ebony looks around in wonder. Trixie just sulks, while Sapphire immediately hops onto the bed.

"Hey, none of that, any of you." Vera claps her hands to get everyone's attention. "First things first, we're getting cleaned up. Then we're getting dinner. There'll be time to explore, or to sleep, afterwards."

She rounds them all up, herding them into the bathroom. Sapphire staunchly refuses to let Vera bathe her, choosing instead to groom herself. Vera is insistent, at least until the claws come out. Squitch is more than happy to let Vera wash her, but Vera quickly realizes that she just wants to play in the water. Goblin is the same way, so Vera washes them both quickly, before they can make a mess.

Washing Ebony is pointless, as nothing sticks to his incorporeal body. He smiles sheepishly at Vera, but she's glad he doesn't require too much maintenance. Bonnie stoicly allows her trainer to bathe her, but still refuses to take off her helmet. And finally there's Trixie, whom Vera wraps in a towel while she washes the rag. Trixie stays by Vera's side the whole time, two yellow pinpricks of light shining in the darkness of the towel the only indication that her Pokémon is even in there.

With her team washed, she returns them to their Poké Balls so she can bathe herself. As she undresses, she notes that her flannel shirt is getting a bit worn. Not only are there thin patches, but also a few tears. It won't last much longer, not that it would do much against the upcoming cold weather, anyway. "I guess I'll have to get a new jacket soon. And stop wearing this one..."

It had been her dad's, but he'd given it to her before she left for Cape. She'd worn it nearly every day, over her other clothes, so it was no wonder it was getting thin. Especially after her adventures the past few days. She reflects more on that as she looks over herself in the mirror. Days old bruises on her chest are nearly healed, but she had acquired a dozen different scratches, scrapes, and other dark marks on her pale skin.

She'd come through them all, no worse for the wear, but she's more aware that she's actually out here, on this journey, and that the real world is a bit tougher than she'd believed.

She grins at her reflection, her smug confidence returning as she sweeps a bit of hair behind her ear. "Looking good, Vera. And stronger than ever."

She lets herself soak in the tub for a good twenty minutes, just enjoying the peace and the warmth. When her stomach reminds her that she missed dinner, she reluctantly gets out, wrapping herself in possibly the softest towel she's ever felt. She lets her Pokémon back out, deciding to order room service rather than actually go get food.

"I could get used to this." She pets Sapphire as they wait, the Dark cat purring under her hand. "I think tomorrow's gonna be a good day."

Aquacorde

the more we love, the more we learn // the more we love, the more we BURN 🔥

Age 27
she/her/he/him
Ankh-Morpork
Seen 1 Hour Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
11,372 posts
16.8 Years
Casey Holt
Monday, May 27, 2019 // Morning, Day 8
Vermillion City
8-01. dangerous

Spoiler: i don't know why - imagine dragons

It's exciting to be back in a city! Paved streets, fewer things to set on fire, people all around… lots of people, actually, a lot of them chattering about upcoming tournaments. And the cold. Casey had thought he'd just gotten used to the insular desert of Route 11 so Vermilion felt feeling cold in comparison, but no- many are grumbling to themselves and each other about a sudden drop in temperature, and the morning dew isn't so much dew as frost creeping along the cityscape. It's legitimately cold.

Casey rubs his hands together and exhales onto his reddening fingers. It's not even just chilly, it's really cold, a kind of cold he wasn't prepared for. It's summer! It shouldn't be cold enough to make him wish for his lost beanie, to make him zip his jacket fully and prompt Ginger to complain and Parsley to whine and demand to be put back in their PokéBalls. Casey relents, but brings out Pepper for company- at least holding the Charmeleon's hand keeps his own warm, and his feet melt the frost as he walks beside his trainer.

"We'll stop by the Pokémon Center and get a room and get y'all checked out first. Then… I dunno, explore? Maybe get some mittens and a hat first, this cold is nasty. You're lucky t' be a Fire-type. It's May, there's no reason-"

"You're late."

It doesn't register that the woman is addressing him until she matches his pace, walking shoulder-to-shoulder with him. Again, she is dressed all in blue, face covered by a matching bandana and large, mirrored sunglasses. The clack of heels against pavement causes Casey to glance down at strappy gold shoes with red, cold toes and he doesn't know why the first thing out of his mouth is not "why are you following me" but: "You need better shoes for today."

"And you need a shower," she snaps before catching herself. Casey runs a hand through his hair. Yeah, greasy. And dusty. Gross. "You're late," the woman repeats. "I don't have time to battle now."

"I- what? I don't even wanna battle you anyway!" Casey sputters. "Maybe tell me why you keep findin' me and I'll have reason to." Finding? Oh, he's right, isn't he- "You're not followin' me, cause if you were followin' me I couldn't be late. So why're you findin' me? How're you findin' me?"

The woman clicks her tongue. "Don't worry. No-one else can."

"That's- that's not the issue, I don't know you and you're finding me and I don't get it and I don't know what you want and I don't like this!" Pepper growls as Casey's grip tightens involuntarily and his voice cracks. No, calm, don't let her see that. He loosens his grip on Pepper's hand and clears his throat. "Leave me alone. I don't want to battle you."

"That doesn't matter." Casey's defensive inhale is overridden by her sharp tones. "I will find you when I see fit, and you will battle me when I do. This time will be an exception. You're late, and staying to battle you will make me late."

"Glad you decided to come by and threaten me anyway," Casey says sourly. God, he needs to hold his tongue. Especially in the face of someone who is an active danger to him. Having thoughts before you speak is good, do that, thank you self...

"Threaten?" The clicking of the gold heels stops abruptly, though Casey continues with his own thoughts for a few paces. He turns to face her where she halted, wisps of light hair falling from her oversized hoodie. They might be brown, or blonde. He can't tell, not when the mostly-risen sun is right behind her. But even through all her careful disguise, Casey recognizes surprise. "I'm not threatening you."

"What- what do you think showing up outta the blue and forcing me to battle and hitting my Pokémon even when I say no and having your Pokémon herd me around- how's that not threatening me?"

The bandana across the lower half of her face moves, but no sound makes its way to his ears. And before she can respond, a tinkling melody fills the space. "Muk," she mutters, whipping a golden phone from her back pocket to silence her alarm. "We'll continue this later," she snaps, the metallic resonance of a PokéBall activation releasing a golden Altaria that she swiftly mounts, taking to the air before Casey can say another word.

"What the psyduck is happening?" he wonders, almost soundlessly, alone in the middle of the street. Pepper whines, just as lost and confused. “She finds me just to tell me we’ll battle later? And what, show me her fancy shiny Altaria and gold shoes and expensive phone?” He contemplates further as he turns himself and Pepper back around, resuming their trek to the Pokémon Center. “Gold’s her color, I guess. Not blue. Blue’s a disguise. So I gotta look out for people wearing gold. And… and what, just not trust them? That ain't right. People are mostly good and honest and stuff.” Casey sighs, swinging his and Pepper's hands to shake off the feeling of unease. “I don’t get this.”

At least he can have the comfort of Pepper at his side again. That helps.

Pepper Bomb • Charmeleon • lv37 | Ginger • Buneary • lv36 | Parsley • Skiddo • lv34
Casey's Profile | Extra Characters | TRAINERS Art | Current Chapter






Astromancer

they/them
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
35,306 posts
13.5 Years
Ralph Gonder
Victoriously
Sunday, May 26th
Noon, Day 7

Sandsy Lv 26 | Coldy Lv 24 | Tricky Lv 16
Jolty Lv 23 | Creepy Lv 21 | Greeny Lv 16
Ralph's Profile | Current Chapter | css base by Aquacorde
The Night Shade swirled towards the Ralts and hit him hard. Afterwards, he was left whimpering in the scorching sunlight, and when he slowly looked up at his opponent again, tears were rolling down his cheeks.

The boy was visibly affected, hesitating a bit. The Shuppet didn't seem as intent as the Golduck was on glancing back for orders, but it also didn't move again yet.

"Double Team!" Ralph called out, and Tricky swallowed hard before he obeyed.

Illusory copies of the Ralts appeared and spread out around the enemy ghost. Shuppet looked agitated at the sight of them, but still didn't move. Ralph watched the boy observing the situation, pokédex in hand, and purposedly didn't call out anything else yet. She wasn't going to keep her small psychic type in battle for longer than necessary, but she was very curious about this trainer's fighting style. It was... Terrible, in her eyes. Way too slow.

"Use Shadow Sneak!" the boy finally called out. "Attack the one that casts shade!"

Shuppet's shadow immediately extended from underneath it, speeding up between the Ralts-copies until it finally found another shadow. There, its unnaturally dark mass (or absence of light?) bounced up and knocked Tricky back. He stumbled and fell to the ground, tears back.

"Sorry," the opposing trainer said, hand reached out almost as if he wished he could step up to the fairy and show his support for it similar to how he had done with his Golduck.

That struck some sort of chord in Ralph.

He didn't just care about his own pokémon. He cared about all pokémon. He didn't fight hard and relentlessly. Basically he was probably a muk trainer. But then again... He did have a Golduck. And Shuppet's punches were not without force as well.

Maybe having a strong bond could be just as important for strength in battle as trainer skill or speed.

Wow I really need lunch. My thoughts are getting messy.

"That was smart," she said out loud.

"Stopping to sort ones thoughts and plans out can have its advantages," the boy responded.

"Yeah, but at some point your opponent is just going to bulldoze you with constant attacks if you stop to think too much every time."

"I don't need to be lectured by a Leftover," the boy said, eyes back on his pokédex.

What a little prick. Fine, then.

"Damn right. We're not in school anymore. This is the jungle. Or, well, savanna I guess. Tricky, come over here! Your turn is over."

Tricky looked endlessly relieved and dried his tears when he got to run over to Ralph - his tiny legs stumbling a bit on the harsh ground - and have her pick him up.

"I see. You forfeit?"

"I have more pokémon. That was two. Meaning that was warm-up. Let's actually fight now."

Was that a streak of nervousness that suddenly crossed the boy's face? Maybe. It made Ralph grin mischievously though. Seeing her enemies flustered always made her feel more confident with her orders and ideas. Like when Jarmie started to get bothered. It only served to make Ralph more daring.

"Greeny, go!"

Ralph's purple rat appeared and blinked her big, emerald eyes at the Shuppet.

"You're training a Rattata?" the boy said, quizzically.

"I thought about making her a pet companion instead," Ralph said, shrugging. "But she still finds fighting fun and it'd be a hassle to keep her out of it. For now, at least. Anyways, she's not scared of ghosts. Her bestie is a ghost."

Shuppet squeaked intimidatingly at the rat, who happily squeaked back.

"I see," the boy said, nodding slowly and raising his pokédex again. "So neither of our moves will work on the other-"

"Focus Energy!" Ralph called out.

Greeny's eyes glowed, and the grin faltered a bit, to be replaced by a more serious glare.

"Um. Use Will-o-wisp, Shuppet!" the boy ordered.

Small blue orbs of fire were summoned and swirled over to Greeny's side, threateningly close.

"Try to avoid them with Quick Attack!" Ralph suggested, and Greeny dashed off.

In the end, only one of the Will-o-wisps made contact with her tail and burned her slightly before it fizzled out. And she had gotten a good momentum, that Ralph intended to make good use of.

"Bite!"

Ending the power from the Quick Attack maneuver with a strong leap, Greeny's fangs were bared as it closed in on the ghost through the air. Shuppet tried to phase through it, but the Dark type energy couldn't be avoided. Greeny's powered up dark fangs sunk into Shuppet's body and made it wail in pain. It flew in circles in the air, upwards, until it finally shook the Rattata off.

"Use Feint Attack!" was the boy's next order, and Shuppet gathered itself just in time to see Greeny land on all fours in the dust below.

The rat now looked up to see Shuppet approach, a strange, sweet look in its eyes. A look that wasn't threatening. Greeny liked that, and grinned back.

"No, it's trying to attack you!" Ralph called out, but too late.

Shuppet's cute look suddenly vanished at that, as it headbutted the Rattata out of the blue. Greeny rolled away, now covered in dust, and looked back up with a betrayed stare.

"Told ya," Ralph sighed. "You're too trusting. Bite again! Revenge!"

Greeny now had zero qualms about charging up her fang with more dark power, her emerald eyes possibly gleaming even more now than before.

"Use Will-o-wisp again!" the boy tried.

But Greeny used Quick Attack umprompted to avoid all but one of the fire orbs again. Slightly singed now on one of her ears as well, she still didn't relent, and followed through on the move. As expected, she phased through the ghost. But Shupped had floated down close to the ground, and when the Rattata landed, she instantly turned around and leaped up again, now finally using Bite on Shuppet from behind.

It had to have been a critical hit. Shuppet seemed to have lost the will to fight, as it soared upwards anew and shook the rat off of its skirt once more. It was trying to move away from the battlefield...

"Shuppet! Wait!" the boy called out. "Return!"

Ralph didn't leave room for 'wait'.

"Pursuit!" she said, and Greeny once again merely bounced against the ground before she jumped back up, her whole body now boosted by Dark energy.

She caught up with the ghost and slammed into it, transferring a 'blob' of the Dark energy onto it in the process. It seemed to cause intense pain to the opposing pokémon, as it fell out of the sky and landed on the ground with a soft 'thud'. Pure ghosts probably didn't weigh very much. But apparently they could still fall and make contact with the ground if they were knocked out. At least this one.

Like a cat, Greeny landed on all four and grinned first at Ralph, then at their opponents.

The boy didn't look very cheerful as he returned his ghost to its pokéball now.

"Oh, come on," Ralph said. "You made me return my other two pokémon before yours. We're not even square yet, I've got to crush at least one more of yours."

"Hm. I'll send out one more pokémon, perhaps. And then we shall see."

"Bring it, kid."


Astromancer

they/them
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
35,306 posts
13.5 Years
Ralph Gonder
Finally
Sunday, May 26th
Noon, Day 7

Sandsy Lv 26 | Coldy Lv 24 | Tricky Lv 16
Jolty Lv 23 | Creepy Lv 21 | Greeny Lv 16
Ralph's Profile | Current Chapter | css base by Aquacorde
The pokémon Ralph's opponent sends out now is small, although not as small as Greeny. Its fur is black and beige, and tufts of red hair sits on its head and tail.

"A Litleo," Ralph says and crosses her arms, but not in a negative way.

Litleos are cool. They're lions. And this one fixes the rat with an intense stare... Oh, right. Cats and rats. Rattata has a natural enemy here. But she doesn't seem very nervous, instead she just stares back in her usual way. This will still be a fair fight, hopefully.

"Let's get to lunch already, then. Super Fang!"

"Use Noble Roar, Litleo!"

Greeny readies her strongest opening move and starts running forward, but the cub holds its position and... And lets out what probably should be a mighty roar, but instead mostly comes out like a squeak. Greeny nearly stumbles from laughing in response, and her Super Fang charge simmers out when she's almost reached the opponent. Litleo blushes intensely, but doesn't back down. Instead, it lunges at the rat unprompted.

Not like his other pokémon, Ralph has time to think, as the cat Tackles the rat.

It doesn't seem to hurt Greeny badly though, as she quickly gets back up on her feet. There is a playful twinkle in her large, green eyes as she tiptoes around the opponent though. Ralph realizes that Greeny actually is waiting for her orders now. That's unlike her. But Ralph will play ball.

"Super Fang!" she calls out again, at the same time as the boy's order comes.

"Use your Ember attack!"

"Wait, Quick Attack instead, avoid the fire!" Ralph quickly changes her mind.

Greeny's fang is barely charged up again and she is once more singed by fire as she narrowly escapes. Her fur is now burned in several places and Ralph knows that she needs to rest in her pokéball - or better yet, a pokémon center's energy recharger - for the purple fur to regain its luster. But it's clear that the rat hasn't given up yet.

Being faster than the cub, Greeny manages to dash around it and Quick Attack it from behind.

"Hyper Fang!" Ralph now calls out, not wanting to let the opportunity go to waste.

"Use Headbutt!" the boy almost screams now.

Greeny manages to sink her critically hitting fang into Litleo's hind leg, and although the lion growls in pain, it turns around and Headbutts the Rattata basically from above. It then pins the rat underneath its larger weight.

"Don't get close to something with three different biting attacks!" Ralph scoffs. "Bite!"

Litleo is forced to jump away to avoid the rat biting its paw or leg once again.

"Agh... Uh... The fire worked well! Keep using Ember!" the boy suggests.

But the lion doesn't comply. It just scoffs and instead tries to roar again. Things maybe go a little bit better this time... But still not really impressive. Greeny at least doesn't crumble from laughter this time around. Instead, she unprompted tackles the cub with a Pursuit, letting the dark energy course through the cat while grinning at it. It's kind of unnerving.

This little dudette definitely has a dark side, Ralph thinks.

"That's probably enough. Unless you wanna keep going?" Ralph says, arms crossed again as she raises an eyebrow in challenge towards the boy.

He sighs, and walks up to the pokémon on the ground. But the Litleo growls when he comes close. After an even bigger sigh, he just returns it to the pokéball.

"Fine. Victory is yours."

"Is it? I think you defeated some of my pokémon too?"

"Uh. I... Your Rattata is the last one standing. Isn't that how it works?"

"Honestly, I don't care," Ralph says and walks up to her own pokémon. Greeny wags her tail happily, but Ralph can tell that she's quite tired. She pats her head affectionately before returning her to the pokéball at last. "Now, Lunch up!"

"Sure..." the boy says, but then something else makes a loud noise, making them both turn around.

"What a battle! That was awesome!"

The grinning boy that rushes towards them with a Pikachu and a Riolu in tow is of course Aberdeen Montany.

"Hey Montany," Ralph says with a smile.

"Hey Ralphie! I've told you, it's Deen."

"And I haven't told you to call me Ralphie, dude."

Deen laughs, and his Pikachu walks up to greet Sandsy. The ground pokémon has been sitting in the grass a while away from the battle but is now walking up to them again. The electric mouse stares in awe at the egg Sandsy proudly shows off. The Riolu remains skeptically behind the legs of its trainer.

"Told you she was a good trainer," Deen says with a wink towards the boy Ralph had just fought.

He sighs again. "Indeed. At least we got some exercise in."

"You two are pals?" Ralph asks.

"Best pals!" Deen grins. "Jayn just wanted to travel alone for the most part so I went with others. Until the science house."

"East Kanto Research Station," Jayn corrects, pushing his sunglasses up higher on the bridge of his nose.

"Yeah. After that, Jayn suddenly wanted to travel with me," Deen says with a shrug.

"Didn't want you to make more unwise decisions," the dark skinned boy says.

"I got a TM!"

"And your soul goes south, no bet."

Ralph puts a hand on Deen's head to shut him up for a while. "You fetched one of those evil machines?"

At those words, Jayn looks straight at her, brown eyes hinted at through the tinted lenses, and he looks less bitter all of a sudden.

"Aberdeen did. I refused to. I saw that they harmed the wild pokémon there and did not wish to be part of that malicious operation."

Deen looks gloomy at that. "I didn't see that... I just. I don't know."

Ralph pities him, as she remembers her own reaction when Jordan had suggested they destroy the machines instead of bringing them back like they were tasked to. She briefly wonders what Casey and Gwen chose to do if they even found theirs. But she shakes the thoughts off.

"It's whatever, we're here now and the doctor at least got fewer of those machines back. I smashed mine to pieces."

Jayn actually smiles at her now. He really does care about all pokémon, doesn't he?

"Aaaanyways. Lunch. You owe me."

He nods. "Certainly. Let's find a better place to rest, preferably with more shade."

"Oh, I saw a great spot under some trees!" Aberdeen supplies. "Follow me!"


Juno

jordan x casey x vera

Age 26
Female
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 20 Hours Ago
4,380 posts
7.5 Years


Chapter 7: Spirited Away



🏜️ Route 11
🕙 May 26th, Late Morning

It took longer than he thought, but they found it. The flowerpot was on its side and not particularly well hidden, but the darkness of the dingy basement and limited scope of Jordan's light made it much harder to notice. Some of the soil was spilt, but the plant looked mostly intact and in good enough condition that Tangles could finally calm down. Egg and flowerpot strapped securely to either sides of her with vines, she contentedly followed her Trainer back upstairs.

When they got back to the mess hall above, Ralph and her party were nowhere to be seen. Jordan checked his Pokégear - he was gone for longer than expected, but not that long. Still, he supposed he did tell her to go on ahead if he was taking a while, and she didn't seem like the patient type, so he couldn't blame her. He took a quick glance out the same window he'd seen Casey and co. through as well, and less surprisingly, they had not hung out around the building entrance they'd been standing by earlier. Sage snorted, peering out longingly.

"Well, we're all going to Vermillion, I'm sure we'll see them on the way, or at the city." Jordan reassured the Skiddo. "As long as nothing goes horribly wrong on the way there." He added jokingly, earning him a swift kick in the shin from her hind leg.

With a cursory glance at his surroundings to make sure nothing (and nobody) was left behind, the team set off.

Following his map out of Route 12, Jordan trudged through the remainder of the swampy woods as Tangles lumbered dutifully by his side. She was the only one to do so; Sage had run up ahead with Tiny on her back and was prancing around the mud. He squinted at the pair. Correction: she was actually jumping directly into the puddles. Lovely. Jordan exhaled. Well, it's not like she wasn't already needing a bath before that, I guess.

Meanwhile, Hop flitted about overhead in the treetops. Jordan couldn't always see him, which made him a little nervous, but he figured the Pidgeotto earned the opportunity to stretch his wings a bit.

The shift in climate between routes was instantly noticeable and a little jarring, but Jordan came to appreciate the warm and dry Route 11 pretty quickly. Even Spirit came out to join them - he was really in his element here. As they moved out of the swamp and into the savannah, Jordan also began to spot more and more people on the route. There were some other Trainers passing through here and there, but many of the people he walked past were sporting cameras and in sizeable groups, some even rolling up in little buses. Their attention was mostly on the local fauna, though some would turn to look at Jordan's own Pokémon and whisper amongst themselves excitedly as they approached, before realizing it was just a muddy Skiddo with a Pumpkaboo on its back. Sage strutted straight through proudly nonetheless, which was admirable considering the mud caked to her fur and hooves had now also attracted a layer of dust and debris, but she didn't seem to share Jordan's embarrassment.

His sigh turned to a smile as he looked up - the vegetation had thinned out significantly between the routes, and he had a pretty clear view of Hop at all times now, as long as he was close by. Other bird Pokémon circled above, but his red-and-yellow plumage gleamed in the sunlight, making him easy to spot against the darker feathered birds he shared the skies with.

A loud snort alerted him to a scuffle between his land Pokémon. With Spirit out now, he and Tiny had been fighting for the coveted spot on a certain dusty Skiddo's back. Realistically, they were both small enough to sit together, but Sage often ran and jumped about erratically and was not the most considerate of her passengers, so the one who was not sitting up front and grabbing her leafy mane was constantly being bucked off into the sand.

"Hey! What did I say?" Jordan hurried up and plucked Tiny off Spirit, who had jumped up and was pulling at the Cubone's helmet. "You take turns or you can both walk."

As he released them, they both immediately raced off to clamber on the goat's back, but it seemed the message was received, at least, as Spirit reached Sage first and Tiny did not try to pull him off.

As they neared a sizeable waterhole, more tourists, as well as wild Pokémon, congregated around it. Most of the Pokémon kept a healthy distance from any people wandering close, but otherwise didn't seem to mind sharing the area with them. It wasn't quite an oasis, but the water also encouraged the growth of more vegetation around it than Jordan and his group had seen for miles; low-lying shrubs, grass, and even a few shade-providing trees sprouted in the area, making it a suitable resting spot for many traveling through. Under one of the larger trees, Jordan set his backpack down and called his Pokémon back over. The water looked a little bit too sandy for Jordan's taste, so he stuck with what was left of his refill from the East Kanto Research Station, but the Pokémon didn't seem to mind. Tangles sprinkled a few drops into her flowerpot. She sprinkled a little bit over the Egg as well, before sitting down.

"Where's Spirit?" Jordan asked as Sage trotted over for a drink, with Tiny on her back this time around. Seemed they really had been taking turns. How nice.

The Grassy duo looked at each other and looked around, before sauntering over to the edge of the water without further acknowledgement of his concerns. That was less nice. He scanned the plains himself; aside from this one area, the vegetation was quite sparse for miles around them, so it wasn't hard to pick up any movement in the distance, but Spirit was quite small, and would be hard to spot if he were mingling with a larger group of tourists or local wildlife. He was fairly social for a Cubone. Luckily, after a few minutes, he was able to spot him not too far off, and had indeed made a friend in another Pokémon. He squinted. A small turkey of some sort. Jordan pulled out his Pokédex.

"Vullaby. The Diapered Pokémon. Dark/Flying Type." It rattled off. "It can't fly yet and must wait until its wings have developed more. Since it's still at a playful age, it hops around friskily. They guard their posteriors with bones that were gathered by Mandibuzz."

He wasn't entirely sure if it was a wild Pokémon or not, but it seemed harmless enough, and they seemed to be having fun. Just then, Hop had finished resting and had taken to the skies once again already. "Not too far!" Jordan called out. And, since it apparently needed to be said, he added, "Help me keep an eye on Spirit."

As he finally relaxed and took a swig from his bottle, he watched his Pokémon play for a bit and admired the scenery. It was kind of beautiful, in its own way. A lot of interesting plant life out here he'd never seen before.

"Oh, dear - look! Aren't they adorable?" Somebody exclaimed nearby, snapping him out of his thoughts. He turned to see an elderly couple who managed to get the attention of a small cluster of Dedenne with their treats. A bolder one had curiously hopped up on the silver-haired lady's shoulder to take a treat from her hand. Her partner laughed. Jordan's staring caught her attention, and she motioned for her partner to stay put as she approached the boy.

"Oh! Excuse me, son, could you take a photo of us with the Dedenne?"

He quickly glanced back over to his Pokémon. Three by the waterhole. Two by the Vullaby. What appeared to be a grown version of the baby turkey was circling above them. He had sent Hop to watch over Spirit, so it seemed fair for the Vullaby's parent to also watch over nearby.

Turning back to the old couple, he smiled and took the camera. "Of course, ma'am."

Lining up the shot, he snapped a few versions of the picture for them before the Dedenne got bored of posing and scurried off. As Jordan handed the camera back to the ladies, he heard a loud, familiar squawk. He whipped around and looked up.

"Hop! What are you doing?" He'd turned just in time to see the Pidgeotto dive towards the larger bird Pokémon. He frowned. Hop could be a little scrappy sometimes, but that'd gone away a bit when he evolved. He didn't usually pick fights, unless...

The other Pokémon suddenly swooped down. At first, Jordan thought it was picking up its kid to leave, but it was aiming for Spirit.

"What are you doing?" He called out a little more urgently this time as he briskly walked over to where the... the... What is this thing? He pulled out his Pokédex.

"Mandibuzz. The Bone Vulture Pokemon. Evolved form of Vullaby. It circles in the sky, keeping a keen eye out for Pokémon in a weakened state." Okay, so not a turkey. The Pokédex continued. "Its choicest food is Cubone."

"Wha- you could have started with that!" He exclaimed, as if the Pokédex could understand him, before breaking into a run. Hop lunged again to fend off the predator, as Spirit stood in a daze.

"Hey! What's up with you?" Jordan knelt down and spun the Cubone around to face him. Spirit raised his club at Jordan in response, but swayed dizzily and almost fell backwards before he could bring it down. Jordan reached out to steady him. The Trainer pressed his lips together. He was clearly Confused and would be out of commission for a bit. Jordan turned his attention to Hop.

"Look out!" He shouted, as a white object shot towards the Pidgeotto like a boomerang. He effortlessly glided out of the way of the Bone Rush before preparing to retaliate. "Gust!"

Jordan held up his arm to shield him and Spirit from the gust of wind whipping around them. The Vullaby doubled over as its evolved counterpart was also buffeted by the attack. When the smaller Pokémon got back up, it started flapping its wings as well. "What are you up to? I know for a fact you can't fly." Jordan breathed as he checked his Pokédex. "Tailwind. Mirror that!"

As the Vullaby's column of Speed-boosting wind spiraled upwards, Hop's spiraled down towards Spirit, which would be beneficial to the both of them, but not until Spirit returned to normal.

The Mandibuzz took advantage of this and barreled into Hop, beating him down close enough for the Vullaby to also reach with its Fury Attack.

"Wing Attack!" Jordan called out, recognizing he was not going to be able to get any distance between them for a ranged attack. Hop squawked and struck the Mandibuzz with his wings. He pushed it away with enough force to fly straight up, but the Mandibuzz suddenly knocked the Pidgeotto to the ground with an Air Slash. "Hop!"

As the two birds fell into the sand, that seemed to snap the Cubone out of his daze. He rushed over to Club the Mandibuzz to no effect. Frustrated, he let out a Growl, and if birds could laugh, that was what the Bone Vulture Pokémon would be doing as it continued to wrestle with Hop. "Spirit, listen-" Jordan began, but it fell on deaf ears as Spirit turned his attention and Bone Club towards a smaller target. Oh dear, they weren't going to make much headway with this matchup.

While the attack was also effortlessly avoided by the baby, it did affect the Mandibuzz this time. Sensing its young under attack, it was distracted enough for Hop to free himself. Of course. The Mandibuzz seemed too strong for them to take head-on, but the Vullaby, on the other hand...

"Yes! Attack the baby!" Jordan shouted enthusiastically, earning him a few disgusted looks from passing tourists out of context. "No, I- you know what, nevermind. Headbutt!"

It was a command both of his Pokémon understood, and he'd almost feel sorry for the Vullaby being tackled from the ground and above if it hadn't aided in luring Spirit out in the desert to be hunted. They knocked it through the sand with their attacks, one after the other, without giving it a chance to retaliate. The young Pokemon sat up weakly. Jordan watched for its next move, but instead of attacking, it hopped up to the Pidgeotto, chirping animatedly. "Wait, don't listen-" Hop cocked its head from side to side, puffing out his chest. The Flattery was working on him. Was this how it charmed Spirit earlier?

A sharp blast of wind interrupted his thoughts, as the Mandibuzz sent out a Gust of its own. Spirit whipped around, instinctively preparing to throw his Bone Club. "Focus on the Vullaby! Headbutt again." Jordan interjected. Fully in control of his faculties now, the Cubone obeyed, barreling into the Pokémon chirping at Hop.

Dazed, the young Pokémon weakly called out for its guardian. The Mandibuzz swooped down and deftly picked the Vullaby up by a scruff of feathers around its neck, throwing the baby on its back. It leered at Jordan, before taking off into the sky.

The other dark figures circling above suddenly looked a lot more ominous.

"Come on, guys, let's get the others and get out of this desert quick." Jordan said, still looking up. "Don't fly off too far, and you, stick to me like glue."

Party



Tangles
Tangela | F | Lvl. 19

Ingrain
Constrict
Absorb
Vine Whip
Sleep Powder
Poison Powder



Hop
Pidgeotto | M | Lvl. 19

Headbutt
Pluck
Gust
Mirror Move
Roost
Wing Attack



Spirit
Alolan Cubone | M | Lvl. 14

Leer
Growl
Bone Club
Headbutt
Swords Dance



Sage
Skiddo | F | Lvl. 17

Tackle
Growth
Vine Whip
Play Nice
Razor Leaf
Leech Seed



Tiny
Pumpkaboo | F | Lvl. 19

Razor Leaf
Shadow Sneak
Confuse Ray
Scary Face
Worry Seed
Trick-or-Treat



???
??? | ? | Lvl. -

It appears to move occasionally. It may be close to hatching.

Inventory

- Pokédex
- Pokégear
- 2-person tent
- Tangles' plant

Moon Stone

Astromancer

they/them
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
35,306 posts
13.5 Years








Jordan
Spirit grew to Lv 17!
Spirit learned Retaliate!
Spirit is able to learn Focus Energy and Feint Attack!
Hop grew to Lv 22!
Hop is able to learn Twister!




Astromancer

they/them
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
35,306 posts
13.5 Years
Ralph Gonder
Sunday, May 26th
Noon, Day 7

Sandsy Lv 26 | Coldy Lv 24 | Tricky Lv 16
Jolty Lv 23 | Creepy Lv 21 | Greeny Lv 16
Ralph's Profile | Current Chapter | css base by Aquacorde
It turned out that Aberdeen had brought a lot of food but too little water. Luckily, Jayn had brought too much water (if there was such a thing in a desert) so there was plenty to go around for everybody. Ralph didn't let the boys know how much her stomach appreciated some decent food for the first time since yesterday, but she didn't make a huge effort to be nonchalant when she wolfed down what she was given, either.

Pikachu and Riolu were enjoying some lunch as well together with Sandsy and his treasure. The tree provided nice plentiful shade for all of them. Tricky, Greeny and Jayn's Litleo seemed to have made an uneasy peace as they were eating close to each other as well.

It turned out that Jayn was about half a year younger than Ralph, and looking forward to his fifteenth birthday with disproportional excitement. His way of speaking was explained by Aberdeen with 'he just wants to seem fancy' and with no comment from Jayn himself other than a strained expression. Ralph could have sworn that she caught him slipping up and using more casual speech when he spoke with Deen though, so it probably was a purposeful act. Real silly.

"He hasn't caught much pokémon, but the ones he's got are really strong! As you saw. He doesn't win much, but he battles a lot so that's why-"

"Excuse me, why are we discussing my methods like this?" Jayn now couldn't help but commenting, and not with a joyful glare at his friend.

"That explains things," Ralph snickered. "You're way to slow when you battle. You think too much."

"Of course I think!"

"You gotta think faster, like automatically. Just know what your pokémon can take and can't take, and what they can do when something gets thrown at them."

"That's ridiculous," Jayn said, falling into a more casual tone all of a sudden. "Knowledge and judgment is important. Don't wanna be reckless."

Ralph shrugged and earned a little laugh from Aberdeen, who just seemed to adoringly pity his friend for his strategies. The sentiment didn't go unnoticed by the other boy though.

"Aberdeen, meanwhile, catches way too many pokémon and doesn't battle enough."

Now it was Deen's turn to shrug. "Maybe. But I like pokémon! It's okay if they're not all the strongest."

"You will not do well against the gyms if you are underleveled for much longer."

"Okay, okay. Maybe I'll pick a few to train a lot? And the rest can just vibe."

"That's... That's one way to do it I guess?"

"Huh. Or maybe some can be your pets?" Ralph suggested, being reminded of the trial run she'd had with that feature in Lavender. "Aren't you allowed to have like one or two with you that don't battle?"

"Yeah! They can have little scarves or something," Deen mused excitedly.

Jayn shook his head. "I have a responsibility to make my pokémon grow strong. If they just want to live a comfortable life, they are better off staying in the wild, or with people who want pets to pander."

Deen glanced at his blue and yellow pokémon, currently both leaning up against Sandsy's warm skin near the tree, as they dozed off after the meal. "I dunno," he said, but didn't seem sure of how to continue.

"Why do you want to become a trainer, in the first place?" Jayn asked, narrowing his eyes at his friend.

Ralph had just been watching, her gaze now shifting to the younger boy. As usual, he quickly bounced back to an unfazed state with a smile.

"It seems like fun to have a license! And battling and journeying and meeting lots of pokémon in the wild, it's a great adventure! I'll probably journey again once this one is over. In another region! Maybe real deep into some forest. Or caves! Or-"

"You just want the adventure. The danger. Yea, I know you," Jayn said, fancy facade once again dropping somewhat.

"How about you then, Mr Fancypants?" Ralph asked, crossing her arms where she was sitting.

Jayn straightened up. "Like I said, knowledge and good judgment are key. I want to learn everything I can and make the best, most well informed decisions when it comes to pokémon. As a trainer, I wish to be respected and admired for my vast wisdom. I am growing stronger by learning, and so are my pokémon, in symbiosis."

"Except maybe Litleo," Deen commented quickly.

"Mayb- Hey!" Jayn snapped, his eyes flickering over to the cub for a moment. She was lying in the grass alone now, at a not too safe distance from two very curious Ralph-owned pokémon.

"What's wrong with her?" Ralph asked before they could change the topic. "Doesn't she like you?"

Jayn took a deep breath through his nostrils, clearly bothered by the subject. "It seems our personalities do not mesh optimally, is all. But I only just caught her today. It is possible that we will get to know each other better over time."

"Bet!" Deen said encouragingly.

"Sure," Ralph said. "I only caught my Ralts today. Met him yesterday for the first time though. He's so shy though. Not sure he meshes well with the rest of my team. But he's cute I guess?"

"They can evolve into realllly powerful pokémon!" Deen said, eyes gleaming. "Gallade and Gardevoir!"

"I'm surprised you remember that," Jayn said with a raised eyebrow.

"Hey, I didn't sleep during every lecture," Deen giggled.

"I did," Ralph yawned. "What does Litleo evolve into?"

"Ah, she will become a great lioness, a Pyroar," Jayn said, looking proud. "The female variety gains a long flowing mane that shimmers like a flame in the sunlight."

"The guy Pyroars get a huge fuzzy collar instead," Deen filled in.

"That's cool," Ralph said, eyes now wandering over to the sleeping cub as well. No, not sleeping... It was definitely peeking up at the humans a few meters away with half an eye open.

"So are Gallade and Gardevoir!" Deen reminded her.

"And those are psychic types," Jayn added. "With extraordinary sensitive emotional powers."

He got up and gingerly walked over to Tricky and Greeny without asking Ralph for permission. Not that he'd needed to; if her Rattata didn't want him to approach she'd surely let him know. Tricky might just get paralyzed with fear though.

Thankfully, Greeny just smiled and squeaked out a greeting to her former opponent as he crouched next to them. Tricky became smaller than Ralts had ever seen him though, and she felt a bit bad for him.

"Sorry for earlier," Jayn said in a hushed voice that Ralph could barely hear from where she was sitting. He was just speaking directly to the pokémon and not really meaning for the trainers to hear, probably. "I scared you and hurt you, didn't I?"

Oh, he was speaking to Tricky in particular.

"Pokémon naturally battle. It's in your nature. But there are ways to do it carefully and safely until you build your strength and confidence up."

He had caught the pokémon's attention - but lost Greeny's, who instead waddled over to Litleo to try to catch her wagging tail.

"He is great with pokémon," Deen's voice suddenly whispered right next to Ralph, almost startling her.

"Yea, sure," she acknowledged. "I can tell."

"I doubt he'll be the next champion, but then again, neither will I. It's okay, most people can't be."

That was surprisingly mature coming from this small teen. But Deen had a way of just saying things without sugarcoating them, after all. She shouldn't be surprised.

"Why are you a trainer, by the way? I don't know if I asked you that before, Ralphie."

Ralph just shrugged instinctively. But when she saw Aberdeen's big, inquisitive eyes, she finally allowed herself to think a bit harder on it. About her siblings and her family. About Joseph and the Accora branch of her family. About Casey and Pewter City, long ago.

The savannah seemed unusually silent for a beat. Only a warm wind made the tall grass around their lunch site rustle, and vague whispers could be heard between Jayn and the Ralts still.

"I thought I'd be unique in my family for once, if I went for pokémon training. But also, I thought my friend would join the school together with me so I wouldn't be completely alone."

She was surprised at her own candor, and let out a sigh afterwards, as if it was a huge release to actually say those things out loud. "But of course, it turns out pokémon training was in my blood all along so I'm the opposite of unique now, and my friend didn't join the school with me after all. Not for a long time at least. So now I just... I just do whatever. I just do what's expected. And then I don't know."

"That sounds okay," Aberdeen said, and she turned to blink at him. "I mean, I doubt everyone has their life figured out."

"Heh. I guess," Ralph said, and punched him in the arm with her fist.

"Everybody, I need to say something," Jayn suddenly said, walking up to them.

At his feet, Litleo and Greeny stood, and in his arms, was Tricky. And the Ralts was smiling. Ralph had a bit of trouble comprehending what she was looking at.

"Please, trade me your Ralts. For my Litleo."

The lion cub didn't look offended, actually she barely reacted, although her eyes went from the rat on the other side of the boy, to its trainer, as if she was measuring both purple haired green eyed creatures up. Tricky, on the other hand, looked perfectly content being held by the boy.

"Oh wow. Is that really a fair trade?" Aberdeen questioned. "I mean, Gardevoir or Gallade..."

"It's a Ralts and a Litleo," Jayn corrected him. "Both are small pokémon now who need proper care and guidance. I am not at all saying that you could not provide that for Ralts, of course not-," he hurriedly added towards Ralph, "I'm just saying that..."

He bit his lip for a moment, as if choosing his words carefully.

"I really would like to train this Ralts. I like him. And I do think, if I may say, that Litleo and you will mesh much better together than she and I ever will. If you do not want to trade, I will still care for her, of course, and we will make a good team eventually. And I'm sure that you and Ralts will-"

"Sure, let's trade," Ralph said simply.

Jayn blinked, while Deen cheered, despite what he said earlier about the fairness of the trade.

The girl got up and walked up to Jayn.

"There's no doubt Tricky, ah, Ralts will love you. Having many but careful battles might really suit him, honestly. Not as hectic as a life with me."

Tricky gave her a quick smile.

"I'll keep his nickname in honor of you!" Jayn said, way too pompously.

"Gee thanks," Ralph said unceremoniously before crouching to get closer to the lion cub. Greeny joined her as well, and eyed Litleo like a kitten eyeing a new toy.

"Are you okay with this, too? I'm not as careful as Jayn is. Maybe being my pokémon is too hard for you."

She'd gauged the cub's personality just right. It scoffed and walked over to Ralph and sat down promptly next to its new trainer, without a second glance back at Jayn.

Greeny had never looked happier.


Female
My place
Seen 2 Days Ago
Posted 1 Week Ago
200 posts
6.3 Years
Gwen Alanis ft. Arianne Chandler and Richard Wolstenholme
Sunday, May 26
Evening
Vermilion City 11
After leaving the restaurant, Courtney went straight for the sea, dragging along Sarah to the best of her abilities and effortlessly getting Gwen to follow along too. Arianne and Richard also went after the three girls, but kept some distance from them just so that the Cinnabar trainer could joke with Richard about how good her hometown rival was at organizing night trips.

The very last sun rays peeking over the sea made for a very striking image, for both Courtney and Arianne. They easily agreed about how that view reminded them of Cinnabar, and even mentioned about taking a swim soon, only to be interrupted by Sarah… who had to warn them about the harmful effect of the infamous Vermilion Harbor sea water.

And so the group of five headed south, still walking along the seaside promenade, pointing out the absolute lack of sand of any kind and the presence of many large ships, warehouses, and industrial buildings instead. An innocent joke still comes up between Sarah and Courtney, as the Fuchsia girl calls her friend a “cargo girl in her natural habitat” and earns a pout from the redhead.

Eventually though, a relatively empty section of the promenade becomes the perfect setting for the battle that Courtney was teasing all along. She has no problems reclaiming it for the group and calling out Gwen to settle the score, all while Sarah, Richard and Arianne act as spectators.

“For the honor and dignity of all pizza in the world, I challenge you to a battle!” The redhead yelps, a wide grin on her face and a Pokéball in her hand.

"And for the honor of Castelia City's number one treasure, I accept your battle!" Gwen simultaneously grabs three Pokeballs off her belt, a Lure Ball in one hand and two basic Pokeballs cramped in the other. "Some of these guys don't have a lot of battling experience yet, but that won't be a problem! Gotta start somewhere!"

“Oh, is that how it is?” Courtney remarks, hastily grabbing the only other two Pokéballs she has on her. “Well… what makes you think I’ll go easy on you? Come on out everyone!”

Courtney’s whole team is now standing in front of Gwen and her Pokémon. The Shuppet from the Lavender graveyard, her trusty Magby, and a Luxio.

“Hey, I battled that as a Shinx! You made progress…” Arianne points out, getting back a proud smile from the redhead. “Why of course! Your Wartortle will love it, too.”

"That's so cool!" Gwen gleams before shaking her head. "But we'll give it our all! Come on out guys!"

All three Pokeballs are opened at once to send out her Pokémon. On her side of the field is Scar, the large Bouffolant with scars across his face, her Rufflet which curiously pecks at the ground, and… King, her oddly round Magikarp that pathetically flops against the ground, which takes Gwen by surprise. She quizzically stares at King before looking back at her Lure Ball. "Ooohhhhh right, I forgot I swapped Marshall out for King…"

Richard can’t help but to shake his head looking at Gwen. But he quickly changes his attitude and cheers for her. “Come on Gwen! I’m sure you can still win this!”

“And now what’s that gonna do?” Courtney laughs, but can’t really hide the surprise in her voice. “Did you seriously just… call him out by accident, too? Please, don’t make me laugh even harder!”

Forgetting what Pokémon are with you because of excitement is pretty embarrassing, but Gwen won't let that get to her. "Like I said, they need to start somewhere, and so does King! That's how he'll become a killer Gyrados!" She pulls her Pokedex out, glancing over to see who knows what.

“Not if I zap it first!” Courtney smiles, as her Luxio roars proudly before using Thundershock, trying to aim at Magikarp. “Shuppet, you use Screech instead!”

A loud shriek covers all the other Pokémon’s cries as the Ghost type levitates above them. Underneath, Magby simply waits and gets ready for what’s probably going to be a counter-attack.

"Alright then, Scar, use Horn Attack!" Although the roars of Courtney's team intimidates Gwen's Pokémon, Scar charges forward as if it were no big deal, and lowers his head to aim his horns for whoever gets in the way while Rufflet gusts up a Tailwind to increase Scar's running speed.

That just leaves King. She knows full well one electric type move from Luxio will fry him, but his one water-type attack means he's worth keeping out. She'll have to figure out a way to avoid the incoming attack somehow, and fortunately for her a certain somebody's Feebas gives her inspiration.

"King, use Splash to make a dust cloud!" The Magikarp leaps up and down, kicking up dirt and sand on the ground that forms into a cloud. While it's not as thick as the one Bethany's Feebas created a while back, it does the job well enough that his exact position is obscured.

The Thundershock attack is dampened by the cloud and seems to have missed Magikarp, to Courtney’s dismay. And there’s worse, a Bouffalant coming straight to her, making the pier shake beneath its hooves. Shuppet is relatively safe, but the other two, not so much. Unless…

“Magby, bounce up with Flare Wheel! Luxio, use Spark!”

Magby quickly envelops herself in flames and leaps out of the way, leaving Luxio charging up a Spark attack and running towards Bouffalant. It doesn’t take long for the two Pokémon to meet, and Gwen’s is definitely the stronger one: Luxio is knocked back, shrieking in pain, but still barely standing. “And now… now we Smoke Screen! All around Bouffalant!”

Scar groans as the smoke envelopes him, but Gwen doesn't seem to mind. "That's not gonna do muk! Rufflet, Tailwind again to get rid of the smoke, and Scar, strike back with Revenge! King, uhh, use Bubble on Magby or something!" As the smoke is blown away, Scar aimlessly rushes forward as dark energy is channeled through his horns while King's weak bubbles ride the wind.

"Those are all good moves but… Shuppet, fire!" Courtney yelps, as her Ghost type swoops down behind Bouffalant. The tailwind only makes the Will-o-wisp faster too, given Shuppet's positioning, and Magby has a chance to follow that up with a quick Ember as well before dodging Bubble.

Scar's burn isn't enough to stop his horns from colliding into Luxio again, but upon noticing him wincing, Gwen remembers Casey's words. As much as she doesn't want to return him, especially against Courtney, it's for the best. "Alright Scar, return." Gwen sighs, using Scar's Pokeball to beam him back, much to his dismay. "Sorry," She faces Courtney. "But I don't want to push my Pokémon past their limits, and Scar was clearly hurt there." From over her shoulder, Bead nods affirmingly.

"W-well… I thought this was a big deal?" Courtney raises an eyebrow. "A serious fight, you know?"

Her Pokémon are not attacking King or Rufflet though, but are just regrouping around the hurt Luxio - it really just looks like a timeout. And case in point…

"Yeah, better to wait for a moment and sort that out!" Sarah calls out. "You should probably ask Luxio how he's doing, too."

"Hey, I know you!" Gwen calls out excitedly, not noticing Rufflet flying over to perch on her head. "Hope you weren't too late to see my cool new Pokémon in action!"

“Eh? Of course I did, Gwen. For all of them being new catches, they sure did well!” The Fuchsia girl chuckles. “You know, the only reason I didn’t grab Courtney when she started to bother random people at the restaurant was because I noticed it was you guys.”

“C’mon Sarah…” The redhead chimes in, before taking some steps towards her Luxio, giving him some gentle nudges as she checks on him.

"Maybe it was a little unfair to send these guys out to battle. King and Talon would have been fried by Luxio."

“And that’s why you went straight for it with your other Pokémon, right Gwen? That’s a workable strategy!” Sarah smiles towards Gwen. Arianne just looks towards Sarah instead, clearly interested in what she’s saying. Except…

“Wait, Talon? You mean…” The black haired girl questions.

“Talon, huh? That’s a great name.” Richard chimed in.

"Oh yeah, that's what I'm calling Rufflet now." Gwen points to the flying-type nesting in her hair before he lightly pecks at her head. "Ow!"

“Sounds cool! Eh, way better than what I suggested…” Arianne chuckles nervously. “I have some nicknames to dish out as well!”

“I guess, it’s decided then.” Richard giggles at Talon’s action against its trainer.

“As a Fuchsia girl, I approve of that name!” Sarah smiles as well. “So where were we… oh, the fight, correct?”

“I don’t really understand how the ‘Fuchsia girl’ thing works but sure.” Richard shrugs. “Flying gym, you know?” is the answer he gets right away.

"I wanted to get these guys stronger, but it might be a bad idea if they're so outmatched. Although if I used my strongest this would be over already." Gwen flashes a smirk at Courtney. "Hey Arianne! You caught new Pokémon on Route 11, right? Whaddya say we do some sparring!"

“W-what? But I’m still fired up for the fight!” Courtney complains. “Although… I suppose this can be fun to watch. So, Arianne…” She calls out, a smirk back on her face now that she’s realized that Luxio is ok. “Weren’t you on my side when it came to pizza? Show this heretic how it’s done, will you?”

The girl laughs nervously and tries to stay out of this, but Courtney grabbing her hand makes it impossible to do so. “Well… alright Gwen and Courtney, I’ll battle too! But no triple for me this time.”

Gwen looks over to Courtney, still pumped up. "We can settle this some other time! For now though, that's fine by me. Scar needs to rest anyways. How about a double then?"

“Well…” Arianne smiles, calling out her Blitzle and Espurr. “Let’s see how this goes, shall we?”

"Another electric-type, eh?" Gwen will have to be careful here so as to avoid King and Talon being knocked out.

“Hmm… Blitze is going to be troublesome for Talon,’ mutters Richard while trying to guess what Gwen will do against Ari’s Blitzle.

“Of course! But we can start off with a Flame Charge on Talon! And you, Espurr, Fake Out on him too!”

Espurr runs forward, and dashes towards Rufflet with a quick jump, dealing next to no damage but making it harder for him to keep flying… an easier target for Blitzle to run into.

Talon flies back from the recoil as King does his best to aim bubbles at Espurr. "Talon, just try to stay airborne and use Home Claws!" Talon scratches his claws together to sharpen them and King just flops around with Splash. Gwen figures it's a good way to practice his jumps.

"Powering up, uh? Shockwave and Confusion, still on Rufflet!" Arianne smiles, clearly choosing to focus on what she considers to be the bigger threat. The confusion comes in first, and once again doesn't deal much damage, but the following jolts of electricity are surely going to be more effective…

Talon spirals to the ground but just barely manages to fly his way back to his previous position. Gwen, not wanting to waste anymore time, sees this as the opportunity to attack. "Okay Talon, Wing Attack on Espurr!" She expects to see him dart towards the psychic-type, but is completely thrown off when instead he turns around and shakes his head at his trainer as a sign of defiance.

"Wh-what?? What do you mean no?" Gwen cries. "Uh, okay, try Peck!" She's met with another emotionless refusal with a shake of Talon's head, further irritating her.

"Looks like a time out to me!" Sarah yells from the side. "That looks like a stubborn new catch!" Arianne nods, as she tells her Pokémon not to attack.

“Yeah, I guess it’s over.” Richard scratches his face with a disappointed look.

"Already over?" Courtney giggles from a distance. "Really Ari?"

Gwen groans. "Tusk is stubborn but at least he actually attacks!" Talon flies back to perch on Gwen's head. He's really seemed to take a liking to that spot.

“I don’t mind ending it here, yeah.” Arianne speaks up, smiling towards Gwen. Espurr seems perfectly fine with this, and just walks back towards her trainer - but in the meantime, Blitzle enthusiastically lets out crackles from her mane as she prepares a Charge attack. She gets sucked up into her Pokéball before anything bad happens, though.

“Uh… sorry Gwen, at least I called her back in time…” Arianne laughs nervously. Sarah chimes in as well, much more relaxed. “Courtney’s being a bad influence…” She earns herself a pout from the redhead.

"I'd love to keep battling, but I can't really force my Pokémon to." Gwen exhales rather frustratedly. "I know we just got here, but I kinda wanna heal Scar up already."

“It’s wise to do so, if I may say so myself,” Richard shares his opinion with the group.


CCS and art by Aquacorde
NNID: Bluekirby2
3DS FC: 3050-8098-0622

WizardOfOdd

Kirbmeister

Age 20
Male
Workshop of Dreams
Seen 1 Hour Ago
Posted 1 Hour Ago
1,453 posts
1.9 Years

Richard Wolstenholme
Vermillion City, May 26th, Evening



Chapter 7 - 2
Truth of the Matter

Ft. Gwen Alanis and Arianne Chandler

“Oh right, Richard, there’s one thing I meant to ask you…” Courtney giggles, as the group heads back towards the Pokémon Center.

“Yeah?” Richard looks at Courtney with a puzzled look as he doesn’t expect her to ask a question to him specifically.

“You’re from where in Cinnabar? East side or west side? I can’t believe we never met when we were children and I have a pretty good memory!”

Even Arianne, who’s walking beside Gwen and in front of the other three, turns to look towards Richard, evidently curious.

Richard’s eyes widen after he hears Courtney’s question. Here it is, the loose end he didn’t manage to cut off clean the last time they conversed, and he doesn’t have anyone to blame for it other than himself.

If it is the past, he would have chosen to bury himself deeper inside his own lie, but—

Richard inhales deeply. “Actually… I’m not from Cinnabar, sorry.” He answers in a weak tone.

“Such a shame, isn’t it?” Courtney laughs. “Cinnabar is great! But jokes aside…”

Sarah interrupts her classmate right there. “Why did you lie then, Richard?”

“I have my reasons for doing so. Or so I would like to answer, but I owe you two some explanation, so…” Richard weakly laughs to calm his own nerves. “It’s because of Lizzi— I mean, Liz.”

“Oh? You’re lying to Lizzie? Why? She’s not gonna bite you or anything, you know.” Courtney smiles.

”You call her Lizzie? Well, that’s new...” Richard chuckles slightly. “Anyway, about that… It’s kind of complicated.”

“Lizzie is fun, and she never said she hated it so…” The redhead continues. “And by the way, it’s complicated is not an answer. You think I’m too dumb?”

”Never in a million years would I think of you like that. It’s just… Argh… It’s just…” Richard shakes his head while gritting his teeth. “She was once my friend, a very close one even, I doubt she would remember me, though.”

“Sounds like someone I know…” Courtney smirks, causing Arianne to speed up her walking pace slightly. “Anyways, what would you have ever done to break the friendship? Thinking about it, you’d make a cute couple, and yet…” A sigh signals that the ball’s gone back to Richard. Sarah is just listening carefully at this point. Gwen looks as if she's trying to be interested in what Courtney is saying, but only interjects with a yawn as opposed to actually saying anything.

”Do you really want to know the truth?” Richard’s tone changes to solemn as he turns his gaze once more towards Courtney.

“Why not-” Sarah stops her friend again. “Hey, Richard, you don’t have to say anything if it’s too much to handle, it’s ok!”

“Yeah but…” Courtney continues, almost speaking over her friend now. “But if we can help you two to get back together then it’s important!” Sarah just sighs, turning over to Richard.

Hearing Courtney’s answer to his question, he cannot help but start laughing. That laugh isn’t directed at Courtney but at himself.

How many times has he tried to handle everything alone only to have it blow spectacularly on his face? The word ‘help’ was a foreign concept for him for quite a while and not even Keith who was very close to him was an exception to this rule.

He just didn’t want to burden anyone else with his problem. After all, they had enough problems of their own before he should share the weight of his burden with them. Yet what happened during the duration of his journey had spun the cogwheels inside his mind, if he only had trusted others sooner then perhaps he didn’t have to suffer under the weight of the mistakes he made.

"Richard?" Courtney raises an eyebrow. "You still here with us?"

"It's fine, Courtney, don't force it… actually, why don't you help him act more believable as a Cinnabar boy?"

"That doesn't sound easy, Sarah…" the redhead laughs.

“There’s no need for that, Lizzie already blew my cover less than 24 hours after we met. It seems even with memory loss, she was still sharp as ever,” says Richard.

"Oh. Well, I should've expected that from her!" Courtney runs a hand through her hair. "But now it sounds like you were hiding stuff from us…"

"Wait a sec, cargo girl." Sarah chimes in. "You said memory loss, didn't you? We didn't know about Liz going through anything like that. Would you mind explaining?" She turns to Richard.

“Of course she didn’t tell anyone…” Richard shakes his head. “ She… Had an accident during our time together, and that happened mostly because of me, that’s why I didn’t want her to remember me at all.” He scratched his cheek with his index finger in nervousness while trying his best to maintain a warm smile.

“You… you are… taking advantage of her memory loss? I’m confused now…” Courtney questions, but this time it’s Arianne who interrupts her.

“We’re almost there, girls! And Richard.” She turns towards the group, gesturing towards the Pokémon Center sign.

"I can't tell you about the details, but we had a falling out with each other, and it was so bad that I'd rather see her be happy than to remember about our friendship. She has good friends like you and Sarah, there's no need for her to chase the past like what she's doing right now…"

Richard looked at Courtney and Sarah with sincere eyes. "I know this is stupid coming from me, but can you two watch over her for me? If she was the same person as she was before she lost her memory, she's a stubborn girl and always tries to keep everything bottled up. I'm not asking you two to constantly watch over her… But, I… Just when you do have some time, can you make sure she's being okay? Please." He pleaded with Courtney and Sarah.

“Of course, Richard! We’re already on good terms and we’ll keep being there for her anytime.” Sarah smiles. Courtney agrees, giving the boy a thumbs up.

“One thing though… I’m not sure she’ll be happy if you keep lying to her or avoiding her forever. If it comes down to it, we are the ones who’ll be counting on you…” The brunette continues, trying to sound more serious to match the boy.

A sudden yelp is heard from Gwen. Everyone's attention is taken only to see Gwen seconds away from bumping into the wall of the Pokémon Center, only being stopped by her Misdreavus who pulls on the back of her shirt with all the might he can muster up through his mouth. "Uhh… Damn, I almost pulled a Marshall there, huh?" Gwen laughs nervously, still facing away from the group.

“Yeah, haha… more proof that we need sleep, if you ask me.” Arianne chuckles from near her.

“True. Honestly, I’m feeling a bit tired myself. I think I’ll go back to my room now, thanks for the night” Richard bows politely. “Bye, see you all later!” The boy in red decides to leave the others early and head straight to his room as the others wave goodbye to him.

I can’t lie to her forever, huh?
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Juno

jordan x casey x vera

Age 26
Female
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 20 Hours Ago
4,380 posts
7.5 Years


Chapter 8: Reunited


👥 Ft. Casey Holt 🏙️ Vermilion City 🕙 May 26th, Evening

The mud and dust stuck to his Pokemon were dry, which he supposed was better than wet mud, but it was still flaking off everywhere, and Jordan didn't want to completely trash the room on their first night. They were lucky enough to have gotten a room at all, it seemed. Aside from the very necessary water, shade and snack breaks in the desert heat that they kept fairly short, they didn't make any more stops after the little Mandibuzz incident. Even with their fairly early start and lack of distractions along the way, there were quite a few people already queuing up at the Vermilion Pokemon Center trying to get a room when they'd arrived.

After a quick meal at the cafeteria while he waited for his Pokemon to return from the healing station, he went upstairs to his room with Tangles and Hop, the only two who managed to stay relatively presentable through the whole trek. The three worst offenders of the day stayed in their PokeBalls. Just until he was able to hose them off, at least. There were explicit instructions against bringing Pokemon into the human showers, presumably after one too many young Trainers coming off Route 11 tried to shuffle their dirty Zigzagoon or Rockruff in for a quick rinse as well, gunking up the drains with muddy fur and debris. At least Jordan was able to take a much-needed shower.

Back in their room, Hop had taken up the whole armchair in the corner by himself. He had fallen asleep perched upright.

"How's the baby doing?" Jordan asked as he motioned for Tangles to scoot over on the bed.

She climbed over carefully with the Egg, grabbing a tissue from the nightstand and gently polishing the hard shell. Jordan nodded with a yawn. "Right, keep up the good work."

The day had been long, and his previous night's sleep was not particularly restful. Being in a bed again felt nice. His eyelids felt heavy and he drifted off to sleep quickly.

ꕥ ꕥ ꕥ

Breakfast was apple juice and oatmeal topped with some berries. This was not by choice, but he supposed Casey would've been proud - Jordan woke up a bit later than normal, and with the sheer volume of Trainers passing through, the pickings were very slim by the time he got downstairs. At least there was brown sugar.

The Pokemon Center's shop was open by the time he finished eating, so he squeezed on over to pick up some things. It was crowded here, too, the place crawling with people trying to restock on Pokemon supplies and gear. Jordan felt like he was in someone's way no matter where he stood - even as he pressed himself into a corner of the toiletries aisle, trying to find his brand of deodorant, he could feel eyes on the back of his head. He shrunk down.

"Turn around, bright eyes~" sang a familiar voice above the chatter of the crowd and Jordan turned around to see Casey shouldering his way through other shoppers. His face broke into a grin - he’d expected to see familiar faces around here eventually, but not this soon, and not him first.

“And I need you more than ever~” Jordan sang back, almost reaching out for a hug, but recoiling as Casey got closer. “Oh, man. You sleep in the sewers last night?”

"It was hot! And I just got in this mornin'." Casey whined, dragging Jordan into a hug anyway. He gasped for air, and Casey let him go quick enough. "There's no rooms so I haven't been able to shower. On a waiting list, though. Guess I'm gross today."

“You and my Pokemon,” Jordan agreed. “Glad I got in kinda early last night, this place filled up quick.” He stepped to the side to allow an annoyed girl to walk between them. “Maybe we should get out of here first. You still looking for something?”

"Nah, I'm good here. Need some specialty stuff later though. Go buy your stuff, I'll wait out in the lobby."

Casey unapologetically and wordlessly commanded the flow of the crowd to make his exit as Jordan made his way to the cashier queue with his shopping basket. The line wasn’t short, but each person only had a handful of things to purchase, so it moved along pretty quickly.

He met back up with Casey outside of the shop. “Alright, I’m good here, too. I’m gonna go upstairs to put this stuff away first, wanna come with?”

"Sure! Oh, hey, can I just- leave my stuff in your room until I get one? I don't like draggin'' this bag around the city, 'specially if it's gonna be this busy. Didn't know Saffron tournaments made Vermilion so busy, did you?"

“Right, thought the tourists on Route 11 would be the most people I’d encounter for a while,” Jordan sighed. “And yeah, of course you can. I put Sage away, so you don’t even have to worry about her going through and eating your things.”

ꕥ ꕥ ꕥ

Back upstairs, Jordan stuffed his new purchases into the top dresser drawer as Casey did a quick reorganization of his bag. "Can I shower? Am I allowed to do that if I don't have a room? Wait, I am, we did that in Rock Village. Can I borrow your razor?"

“Why didn’t you buy one downstairs?” Jordan asked, but he threw him his toiletries bag anyway, before sliding the drawer shut. Casey caught it with barely a glance, dragging his towel and own toiletries from his bag.

"I didn't think of it, I dunno. Maybe later. I'll be back!" And the door slammed behind him, towel trailing along the ground.

Hm. Speaking of showering, Jordan still needed to figure out a way to get his Pokemon clean, too. He decided to let Tiny out of her Pokeball to get a better look - she should be the least dirty of the three, so it was easier to start there. The Pumpkaboo appeared in a flash of red light. “Okay, hold still,” Jordan told her, as he turned the small Pokemon around in his hands. There were flecks of mud dotting her body and her feet were a little dusty, but it wasn’t too bad. She quickly grew impatient with his careful inspection and phased out of his grasp. Maybe I could just buy a few bottles of water, dump it over them on the sidewalk or something… Jordan pondered letting Spirit out as well, but decided to grab a towel first. Turning back to the dresser, he pulled out a few shirts and felt around for his second towel. It’s really only Sage that’s going to need an actual bath, I think…

A piercing shriek echoed down the hall and the door bounced off the wall as Casey burst back in, moustacheless with a towel around his waist, something whizzing across the room and slamming into Jordan's stomach. "WHAT THE HELL, JORDAN?!"

Jordan grunted from the impact, holding up the round, wiggling object that had barreled into him with one hand. “Tiny, how-” he whirled around the room, but it was a stupid question. Right, Ghost. To answer him, she phased through his grip once again, floating behind him so that Jordan was between her and the panicked, dripping boy.

“I… guess she wanted a shower too, heh,” Jordan chuckled sheepishly.

"She can NOT shower with me!" Casey yelled. Some murmurs from behind him caught his attention, and three or four unfamiliar faces appeared in the doorway. "Uh, sorry, everything's fine-"

Casey closed the door on the nosy strangers and drew a deep breath, pinching the bridge of his nose. "That's a ghost," he said finally.

“Well, yeah, but she’s not like… a full ghost or anything, she’s a gourd,” He wasn’t really sure what point he was making here. Jordan plucked Tiny out of the air, but she easily escaped again, floating around the room. This is not helping, stop! “I mean, you’re kind of good with Gospel, right? How is he any less scary than Tiny?”

"I don't like Gospel," Casey grumbled, eyes fixed firmly on Tiny. "I don't trust any ghosts." He ran a hand through his hair and shook some of the water out. "What d'you mean, she's not really one? How's she a gourd?"

“She’s part Grass-type. And, I mean… look at her.” Jordan’s eyes followed her around the room. Ghost or not, the Pokemon was undeniably gourd-shaped. “She has a real body, you know? Most of the time, at least.”

Casey contemplated said gourd for a moment. "What does she do when she doesn't have a body?" His tone was suspicious, but he seemed to be settling down. Is this actually working? Jordan thought to himself, incredulous. He didn’t really know what he was talking about.

“I mean, I’ve only seen her do it really briefly. Most of the time she’s running around or sitting on Sage like any other Pokemon. She goes kinda incorporeal if she doesn’t want to be held, or to get through, like, shower doors…”

Casey pursed his lips. "She doesn't do anything bad?"

Jordan briefly thought back to his Worry Seed night, and her jumping on Hop pre-evolution, or pulling at Spirit’s helmet. She was very much corporeal when she misbehaved, in any case, so it probably wasn’t quite what he was asking about, anyway. “No…? Well, ‘bad’ is subjective. What do you mean?”

Casey inched across the room, keeping his back to wall and eyes on Tiny until he can flop down on the bed. "She doesn't… possess? Things? Or, uh, haunt? Or… control people?"

“Wh- no, no. God, no. What?” Jordan was pretty sure she couldn’t do any of that. Either that, or she had been exercising great restraint thus far, and that seemed much less likely. “No, she’s just a Ghost Pokemon.” He put emphasis on the last word.

"Yeah, but- they do that stuff. They can. I don't like that." Casey scrubbed his hands over his face. "But she doesn't," he exhaled into his hands, peeking up at her over his fingertips.

“Right,” Jordan confirmed before turning to the Pumpkaboo, and then, less confidently, “Right?” Tiny smiled, baring her pointy, little teeth at him. Her body returned to full opacity, and she dropped down on the bed next to Casey with a soft thud. The boy flinched. “See, she’s cute.”

Casey hesitantly reached out toward Tiny to brush her with two fingers, though he flinched back as soon as they made contact. "I… yeah, she's a cute plant," he decided. "I don't like her bein' a Ghost still."

Jordan picked her up and sat down next to the boy, plopping the Pokemon in his own lap and linking his arm through Casey’s. “Well, that’s just something we’ll all have to learn to live with. Were you done with your shower?”

Casey leaned into him, rubbing his ridiculous damp beard into Jordan's neck- probably just to bother him. "Yeah, 'm clean. That's good enough. Left all the stuff in there though."

Jordan pushed Casey's head off him. “Well, go back and grab my stuff so we can get going, then. Specialty shop, right? Hope it’s not another expensive stick for Pepper.”

"Nah, those're still in good shape." Casey hopped to his feet and tightened the towel around his waist. "Grooming shop, that's what we gotta find, and maybe a hat? Have you been outside yet? It's freezing, I dunno why, but like, actual frozen frost on the ground-" Casey was quick to dash down the hall and retrieve things in order to come back and continue his chatter and dress. "Here's your stuff. Get another layer on, I'm wearin' my long sleeves. I need a comb for Ginger, mine ain't the best type for her fur, and a good brush for Parsley- you could get one for Sage, too, a nice Emboar bristle brush, y'know?"

It took Jordan a moment to process everything Casey was prattling on about. “Right. Sweater.” He nodded. He hadn’t thought much of the cold, he’d just figured it felt that way last night because he had left the desert and the sun was setting as he arrived in Vermilion. He hopped off the bed to gather his stuff and pull out a thicker shirt. “Emboar bristle, fancy. I’ll need to scrub the mud off her before attempting to brush her or anything, but yeah, let’s go find a grooming shop.”

Party



Tangles
Tangela | F | Lvl. 19

Ingrain
Constrict
Absorb
Vine Whip
Sleep Powder
Poison Powder



Hop
Pidgeotto | M | Lvl. 22

Headbutt
Pluck
Twister
Mirror Move
Roost
Wing Attack



Spirit
Alolan Cubone | M | Lvl. 17

Focus Energy
Feint Attack
Bone Club
Headbutt
Swords Dance



Sage
Skiddo | F | Lvl. 17

Tackle
Growth
Vine Whip
Play Nice
Razor Leaf
Leech Seed



Tiny
Pumpkaboo | F | Lvl. 19

Razor Leaf
Shadow Sneak
Confuse Ray
Scary Face
Worry Seed
Trick-or-Treat



???
??? | ? | Lvl. -

It appears to move occasionally. It may be close to hatching.

Inventory

- Pokédex
- Pokégear
- 2-person tent
- Tangles' plant

Moon Stone

Eleanor

💖 Mikoto Misaka 💖

Age 21
Italy
Online now
Posted 1 Day Ago
2,546 posts
4.8 Years
art by Aquacorde
Arianne Chandler
Vermilion City
Sunday, May 26th, night
Written with QueenNothing as Gwen

Crowded room

A large heavy yawn is released from the gaping jaw of Gwen, following with a mumbled "Oh man, what a day!" She reaches for the buns on her head to pluck out any hair ties that keep them in place, and is instantly engulfed in a massive amount of messy black hair.

That’s even better of an effect than Arianne loosening her ponytail, and the Cinnabar girl can’t help but chuckle at that. “Totally agree, Gwen… it’s been crazy!” To think she was sleeping in Quartz’s lab the same morning, and is now in Vermilion after walking across what’s basically a savannah, meeting up with Casey, Gwen, two new Pokémon, and then Courtney, Sarah and Richard… she yawned as well, but kept a smile on her face.

"It sucks I couldn't challenge the gym today, but that's why we need to be well-rested for tomorrow, right guys?" Gwen says, not looking towards her roommate, but rather at four Pokeballs she's questionably grabbed off her belt. With two balls in each hand, she simultaneously clicks them all open, and much to Bead's dismay, four of Gwen's Pokémon she's currently carrying are sent out into the rented room, although King is nowhere to be seen.

Arianne… can’t really believe her eyes at that. As cute as it was to see Gwen talk to her Pokémon even when they were in their Pokéballs, as nice as it was to see that she really was trying to bond with them, having all of them out in the room - yes, including Bouffalant - looks a bit… too much. In fact, she has to rush over to the window and open it up at least slightly.

“Uhh… sorry Gwen but, I’m not sure this room is large enough for all those Pokémon…” The girl points out, laughing nervously. “I see that you really like to bond with them but… wouldn’t we have less air and not sleep just as well?”

The room really isn’t that large - just a bunk bed, a closet, a desk, and a small bathroom, all somewhat aligned along the walls. The small window on the roof is good enough to get some air flow, or look at the stars above, but that’s pretty much it.

Gwen appears to give some thought to what was brought up to her. "In that case, Talon can just use Tailwind to make more air! Problem solved!" Across from the bunk bed, Scar rests on his knees. At least the largest breathing creature in this room isn't giving any problems despite how much a rowdy Axew is trying to unsuccessfully rile him up. An aggressively hefty exhale from Scar's nostrils is enough to get him to back off at least.

Not the most reassuring sight, uh? Arianne still seems to be on the fence about Gwen’s idea and in fact, the more she thinks about it, the more she starts to oppose it. But how would she tell her that? Her mind goes back to Casey, of all things, and that talk they had while on Route 11.

“Ok, so… I think Talon needs to sleep just like you. How does he use Tailwind when sleeping? Like… do you think that will work?”

"Oh yeah, I guess you're right… hey, do you know if Rufflet can learn Sleep Talk?"

“Well…” Arianne picks up her PokéGear and after a few minutes, comes up with the answer. She has to keep her cool and act like she wants to help, and so… “Oh, yes, he can. But only with a TM, which I don’t think either of us has…”

"Damnit!" Gwen exclaims. "I, uh… guess I'll return Scar then." She sighs as she does just that.

The Cinnabar girl has to hold back a sigh of relief, but is surely happy to see the room less crowded than before. “So… have you decided which bed you want, Gwen?”

"I'm taking the top bunk, of cou-" The grunts of her Axew trying to pull himself to the bottom bunk cut her off. "Oh, I guess carrying forty pounds of dragon up a ladder would be a pain in the ass… well, bottom bunk it is!" She takes a few steps towards the bed before just carelessly tossing her body onto the mattress, and the rest of her Pokémon follow suit.

"Well, with all of your Pokémon sleeping next to you, it makes sense!" Arianne chuckles. Luckily she isn't already in bed herself, though… "I'm happy with the top bunk, so no problems there. Just a few minutes and I'll be ready!"

As she climbs up the small ladder and settles herself up in the small top bed, Arianne doesn't have any Pokémon of her own following her. That's just how she's used to. But wasn't she making an effort to bond more with her team now? Wasn't that what she and Casey agreed was a good thing for every trainer worthy of that name?

She goes through all of the Pokémon in her team (unlike Gwen) and ponders some of her choices. Eric is too large and heavy for a top bed, and the same can be said for Blitzle. Honedge being close to her when she's supposed to sleep and recover energy is the last thing she needs. Mizar… is Mizar. And that leaves Espurr and Lulu.

Espurr may still be unable to control her power, and honestly kinda creepy with those wide expressionless eyes, but Arianne doesn't mind giving her a chance. Lulu is not only even tinier, but can act as a night lamp, and even put people and Pokémon to sleep: the girl has traveled with her for a while now, too, and surely trusts her more than the Psychic type now.

Maybe sleeping with Pokémon is actually something too "Gwen" for other people to try out, but she's the only other person in the room. Arianne only needs to make sure she's ok with it, and she definitely looks ok with it. But still… "G-Gwen? If you don't mind, I'd like to sleep with some of my Pokémon too! Don't worry though, they're tiny."

"You mean you didn't already?"

"Uh…" Arianne mutters as she goes back towards her backpack, this time to grab the PokéBalls she needs. "No? But whatever. Here goes nothing!" She declares, as her two smallest Pokémon come out in the middle of the room. Lulu just tilts her head, looking intently at Arianne, while Espurr just gazes around the room, slightly trembling, before fixing her eyes on Gwen's teammates.

"D'awww, they're so cute!" Gwen adores. "I always sleep with my Pokémon, so I just thought it was normal. It's how I get closer to my Pokémon. Except Bead I guess because well, he doesn't exactly sleep. Ghost powers or something like that."

"Ghost powers? Like… what? Hope it's not the same as my Honedge, haha!" Arianne smiles, as she tries to put Lulu and Espurr up on her bed. They both stare at her, likely unsure of what's happening.

“Y’know, like… ghost powers.” Gwen’s words start to drag and her pitch in voice lowers, clearly a sign that she’s beginning to doze off.

"Well… yeah, I get it!" Arianne laughs from above. "It's interesting, worth looking into a bit more!"

She then turns towards her two Pokémon. Espurr is still trying to find a decent place to curl up, and is taking a few steps all around the bed, while Lulu has stopped bouncing around by now, and has nestled herself close to the corner of the bed, leaning against the wall of the room. "O-oh, just curious though… do your Pokémon really behave when you sleep? Do you make sure they're sleeping before you do?" The Cinnabar girl lets out a small sigh.

The only response from Gwen is a loud snore, which is followed by similar noises from her Axew. Everyone else has seemed to have fallen asleep as well, except for the aforementioned Bead who watches over his trainer.

“So the answer is who cares, uh?” Arianne smiles, this time a bit more nervously. Surely having Espurr still trying to find a comfortable position is not helping her, and cuddling the small Psychic type doesn’t sound too safe either. She’s powerful.

Might as well use the time for a quick recap.
  • The girl has already battled a bit with her two new Pokémon and she’s even going to sleep with one of them! Keeping in mind the objectives she and Casey had agreed on before parting ways, this is some good progress! It is undeniably a bit scary to let a potential threat like Espurr roam relatively free outside of her Pokéball but she has to get used to it, if it’s true that Casey walks with a potential flamethrower.
  • Her other Pokémon, though? Eric is definitely her wonderwall, the strongest member and the most reliable. Lulu is nearly just as good, and is supposed to even have an advantage against Vermilion’s Gym Leader. Whereas Mizar and Honedge… well, she still needs to bond with them and get to know them. And it’s not that easy, considering that they’re both, well… scary. Very focused on the offense, sometimes self-destructive, so eager to prove themselves at any cost. At least that was the overall impression.
  • Speaking of proving themselves… Arianne. She did get a proper reward from Quartz that morning, once they learned that the device was successfully retrieved. Not only did the researcher submerge her with words of gratitude, but also gave her a TM as a parting gift. Well, Arianne was supposed to choose which one, but in the end Quartz just gave her one they thought could be interesting - Aura Sphere it was called.
  • Now, was that gift really worth the effort? Too soon to say. Arianne did look into the move a bit and sure enough, it’s a pretty powerful one, but no one on her team can learn it yet. That detail alone just made her close the tab on her PokéGear and put it back away… oops! But even then… was bringing back the device really the right thing to do, if all of the local Pokémon seemed to be so strongly against it? No answer there either.
  • Onto other matters now… what about the Gym battle? Another place to prove herself that she can win battles that matter. Her enthusiasm may not be anywhere near Gwen’s, but it’s there nonetheless. Another thing to keep in mind is the rather complicated situation here at the Pokémon Center, where you don’t even know if you will get your Pokémon healed up in time. With that considered, it’s easy to see that Arianne will go to the Gym tomorrow, no hesitation.
  • If her time in Vermilion is going to be cut short, then, it’s also a good idea to think about what other things are not to be skipped. Not like there’s too much to do here, right? Arianne’s mind goes immediately towards the water that surrounds the town… which is definitely not very clean, as Sarah mentioned, but… how bad can it be? A short swim might still be a thing worth trying before going once again away from the coast. And that also means, getting a… yawn... swimsuit…
  • Is there a shop for swimsuits? Do they have the right size or the right model? Serious swimsuit for good performances or cute bikini for spending time on the beach? Well…

Just go sleep, Arianne. You need to. Tomorrow will not exactly be a peaceful day.

TEAM:
Eric, lv. 33 • Espurr, lv. 17
Blitzle, lv. 18 • Mizar, lv. 19
Lulu, lv. 26 • Honedge, lv. 19


Paired with Ninetales and Fox 🌸 Moderator of Challenges and Writer's Lounge

Juno

jordan x casey x vera

Age 26
Female
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 20 Hours Ago
4,380 posts
7.5 Years


Chapter 8: Brushing Up For Lessons


👥 Ft. Casey Holt 🏙️ Vermilion City 🕙 May 27th, Morning

Casey was right - now that the sun was fully out in the daytime, Jordan could see the frost glistening in the light. It was definitely much colder out than it had been even last night. Weird. He shivered and hurried along towards their destination, Casey keeping pace even hand-in-hand with Pepper.

The city center seemed to be their best bet, so the boys headed on down to see what the local Vermilion shops had to offer. After a bit of browsing and wandering around in the cold, Jordan spotted a “Sadie’s Spa” just off Vermilion’s Main Street and ushered their group over to it.

“I don’t know if it’s quite what we’re looking for, but they probably have brushes for sale. What do you think?” Jordan asked.

Casey eyed the window displays critically. "Looks quality! Not sure if it's for Pokémon or humans but… let's try!"

A gentle chime sounded as they opened the doors. It had a deliberately rustic yet modern feel inside, with wooden walls and soft, yellow lighting. The scent of lavender permeated the air. Behind the front desk, a large, glass window overlooked the actual spa area, where various Pokemon could be seen splashing about in large, cedar hot tubs, or getting massages from the white uniform-clad staff.

“Well, that answers one question.” Jordan said, peering through the glass.

One of the ladies working there rushed out and took her place behind the front desk, probably having heard the door opening. She looked at the two boys and the Charmeleon with mild confusion, but greeted them warmly nonetheless. “Welcome to Sadie’s Spa! How can I help you?”

"Hi, yeah, uh!" Casey took the lead easily- it.was his project, after all. "Do you sell brushes and combs? I'm lookin' for an Emboar bristle brush. A palm style handle, if you have it. Actually, two. And somethin' to comb a Buneary out with. And what else do you do in here?" His curiosity was already peeking through the business end of the interaction, and Jordan could tell he'd get tangled up in it quickly, but the woman had already slid back out from behind the desk and gestured to their left, before answering his questions.

“Oh, Emboar bristle! An excellent choice for many fur and hair types. Yes, right this way. And I am sure we can find something for your Buneary as well.” She led them down a short corridor into a room with a variety of colourful soaps, bottles and brushes on display as she continued talking. “Most people who come in here usually leave their Pokemon in our care, for a day of pampering and rest. The spa treatments we offer here help them melt away the stress of all the battling and competing they do on a regular basis, you know? A lot of companion Pokemon come through here, too, of course. Everyone likes a good spa day, after all.” Jordan privately wondered if any of his Pokemon would like a spa day. He glanced at the Pokemon through the glass window who were quietly, peacefully, and quietly enjoying themselves there. He couldn’t picture his own doing that.

Casey ran his thumb over a few of the bristled brushes. "Stiffer ones for a Skiddo, right?" he mused, and the woman nodded. But as usual, Casey's brain was already onto the next thing. "Wait, they stay all day?" Pepper whined and pushed into Casey's leg. "No, buddy, you don't have to, we're just chattin'..."

The lady laughed. “Depends on the package, but you’d love it here! You look like you’d enjoy a nice, hot stone massage, just saying.” She told Pepper even as he shied away, before turning her attention back to Casey as Jordan pretended to look at some soaps on the other side of the room. “Anyway, yes, this one should be ideal for a Skiddo.” She pointed one out in front of Casey. “Feel the difference?”

"Yeah, for sure." Casey picked two of the appropriate brushes from the shelf, glancing around for Jordan. "Hey, you want one for Sage, right?"

“Hm? Oh, yeah.” Jordan made his way over and felt the brushes, too. Most of them felt equally bristly to him.

"Any tips on grooming them? You're a professional, I bet you've got better advice than the internet," Casey laughed.

She smiled. “Well, I’d say the firm-bristled brush is a good start, but you might also consider a soft-bristle brush to finish up - I wouldn’t say it’s necessary, but it definitely helps bring out their natural oils and distribute them for a healthy shine. But otherwise, this brush will be quite good for your everyday grooming and getting any dirt and mud out of their coats.”

“Oh, so I don’t have to give mine an actual bath to get mud out of her coat?” Jordan blurted out, looking at the brushes in Casey’s hand with a new appreciation.

The woman looked slightly taken aback, probably since Jordan hadn’t spoken much at all the entire time they were here, but quickly turned to address him. “Technically, no! You don’t normally have to bathe them unless they’re really filthy. Even then, a little bit of warm water and shampoo to get the surface debris out should do the trick.” He contemplated getting Sage out to have the lady assess if she qualified as ‘really filthy’, but the fact that it gave him pause probably meant the Skiddo was due for a bath. He nodded politely, turning his attention to the shampoos again - this time to actually browse for a bottle to purchase - while Casey turned his attention to combs.

"We'll stick with the stiff brushes for now. We're on our journey, y'know, and we can't have everything." Jordan raised an eyebrow as he listened; that was uncharacteristically responsible of Casey. "I do need a comb for Buneary fur, though. She got really staticky and puffy when I combed her out with my regular hair one. And I guess- I mean, Pepper's
been fine with a damp cloth so far, but if there's anything small that's better for him…?"

The lady started recommending some wide-toothed wooden combs to Casey, and Jordan tuned them out as he focused on the intimidatingly wide selection of Pokemon shampoos. His first instinct was to grab a bottle of the ‘Degreasing Shampoo’, but Casey was right - they’re on a journey, and he shouldn’t be buying things for just this one specific occasion. He would hope he wouldn’t be needing a degreasing shampoo for many occasions, at least. No, if he’s gonna get one, might as well be something all his Pokemon could use down the road.

He selected a medium-sized bottle of mild, coconut shampoo that claimed to be gentle and versatile enough for all skin types, and joined Casey back at the counter. “Got your comb?”

Casey presented said comb, an intricately carved piece of solid wood for his spoiled princess of a Buneary, to set alongside the two brushes on the counter and gestured for Jordan to add his shampoo to the pile. “Pretty,” Jordan commented, setting down the bottle. They paid for their items and thanked the lady as they left the spa, but not before promising they would at least consider coming back to treat their Pokemon to a spa day. As the doors closed behind them, they were met with the unusually frosty air outside once again.

“Alright, where to next?” Jordan asked, hovering his hands over the flame of Pepper’s tail while Casey pocketed the spa's business card. The Charmeleon twisted around to see what he was doing, and the sudden movement of the fire made the boy withdraw his hands. “Maybe we should find a place to sit down and try out the new brushes and stuff.”

"Yeah, that'd be fun! Ideally we find a park or somethin' right? But somewhere where we can hose Sage down, 'cause you wanna wash her for real. Do they let us do that at parks?"

Jordan shrugged. “We’ll find out when we get there. Probably. Come on, there’s a city map over there, I think.”

They found their way out of the shopping district, hoping the park they set their sights on had a suitable body of water- something cleaner than the nearby ocean would be ideal. But speaking of bodies of water-

“Woah, hey, what’s that?” Jordan gestured towards a large building by the docks. Long pools of clear, blue water surrounded it, and he could catch glimpses of more of the same on the inside. Through the gentle layer of condensation on the glass, there appeared to be people and Pokemon splashing about indoors.

"Swimming pool, huh? No, wait, that's where the gym is s'posed to be. Was that map wrong?" Casey already was wandering toward the place, forcing Jordan to follow. "No, it is the gym. A swimming pool gym!" he exclaimed, apparently delighted by this idea. It was certainly much different than Beaumont's sleek, ultra-modern, battle-oriented facility, and much busier. People coming and going, stopping and chatting, Pokémon and children wandering erratically, with some of the smaller ones shivering in the cold upon exiting the facility. "...I didn't bring swim gear," Casey suddenly realized, enthusiasm curbed for a moment.

“I’m sure we can buy some somewhere,” Jordan replied, catching up. Looking around, he found a bench nearby where he could sit down but still see inside the Gym. Setting down his bag, he released Sage and pulled out his new brush. He was still curious to see if the lady was right, and this could just brush the matted dirt out. The larger clumps of mud probably could be, at least.

"Hey, yeah, maybe they sell some inside." Casey hovered uncertainly for a moment as Pepper watched Jordan manhandling Sage, but eventually decided: "I'm gonna go see, be right back!"

“Alright, we’ll be here-” Jordan was already having little success trying to get his Skiddo to sit still long enough to tackle the knots and caked mud on her, but as Casey took off, Sage bolted after him. “Hey!”

By the time Jordan- with Pepper on his heels- caught up to his wayward goat, Casey had led her into the steamy warmth of the pool complex and straight to the desk, chatting with a short young man at the check-in desk. He was eyeing Jordan cautiously as Sage wandered near a restricted door, and her Trainer followed to reign her back in.

Casey turned to him with a pout as Pepper butted his head against the blond boy's hand. "They don't sell swim gear. We gotta go back to the shops."

“Oh,” Jordan shrugged, holding Sage by the scruff of her neck as he walked her back over. He looked around curiously. “Well, since we’re here already, might as well look around a bit, if this is the Gym. Find out how they train and stuff, maybe. Might give us an edge later on.” His eyes met the man at the desk’s. “If that’s alright, of course.” He added quickly.

The young man shrugged. "Come back here if you want to schedule a battle, I guess. Or surfing lessons. And don't let that Skiddo in the pools before it's washed. Locker rooms are that way." He jerked his head toward a row of labelled doors along the side of the building and reclined back in his chair, apparently done with the conversation.

Casey's eyes lit up at the free reign he'd been given, even though Pepper was looking nervous and uncomfortable in the humidity.

“You heard him,” Jordan told Sage, before turning to Casey and giving him a small, playful shove. “Let’s go!”

They made their way past the front desk to explore the rest of the unique Gym. Jordan observed the training Pokemon and swimmers as they strode along the walkway. It was a little slippery, so he didn’t move through too fast.

“Okay, good, Greg! Try to relax a little more, you’re not going to fall.” A commanding but kind voice coming from the pool on his right caught Jordan’s attention. He could see a nervous, young boy gripping onto the back of a Sealeo, who was swiftly moving through the water. On the edge of the pool sat a woman with her wet hair pulled back, apparently instructing him.

Casey and Pepper caught up to him as he stood on the walkway, watching. "What're they doin'?" he wondered out loud. Pepper backed away as the gentle splash of waves came a bit too close for his comfort. The young woman noticed them watching and smiled.

“Hi there! Come to learn how to Surf with your Pokemon?” She called out, peering at the bright, orange flame on Pepper’s tail, and the muddy Skiddo in their care, assessing their party members. “Well, I’m not sure your Charmeleon would have a great time in here. I’ve seen Skiddo capable of swimming before, but they’re quite different from what I’m used to teaching. Besides, I can’t let her in the pools-”

“-Until she’s been washed, yes.” Jordan finished for her quickly, repeating what he was told at the front desk. Sage wagged her tail, standing threateningly close to the edge of the pool.

“You got it,” The woman grinned. “Anyway, if you do have Pokemon comfortable in water, bring ‘em here and we can teach them how to Surf. Great way for Trainers to get around. Oh, and teach you how to not fall off them.” She gestured towards the boy, who seemed to have loosened his grip on the Sealeo, and they both looked a bit more relaxed for it. She gave him a thumbs up. “Keep it up, Greg.”

Casey's sigh quickly turned into a whine. "Jordaaaan, we don't have any Pokémon that can swim. Not with us on 'em, anyway."

“Yeah,” Jordan went over his team in his head. I wonder… He thought about the Egg the pushy Psyduck had given him. If it was laid by any of the Pokemon in the basement, there was a good chance Tangles’ soon-to-be foster child will be a decent swimmer. In the meantime, though…

“Um, thank you for the offer, but I think we’ll have to pass for now,” He told the woman. “Not a very water-oriented team on us.”

“Oh! Not a problem, actually! If you’re interested, that is - we have quite a few Gym Pokemon we can lend you if you wanna try,” She responded, lightly kicking the water in the pool beneath her. “Just give me a shout if you change your mind.”

"Will do!" Casey grinned, clearly persuaded. "Okay, then- new plan- we get swimsuits, and we come back, and we- we wash Sage? An' then we go Pokémon Surfing, Jordan, doesn't that sound cool?"

“Yeah, cool…” Jordan echoed slowly, before turning to him. “Thought you couldn’t swim, though.”

"Well, I just won't fall off!" Jordan opened his mouth to respond, but Casey suddenly looked around and asked, "Hey, where'd Pepper go?"

The instructor looked up also. “Your Charmeleon? He didn’t look too happy by the water, think I saw him wander off that way.” She pointed to the end of the walkway, which opened up to a wider platform leading towards more changing rooms. Casey immediately followed her gesture with a quick "thanks", catching Jordan by the hand and dragging him and Sage along in turn.

Party



Tangles
Tangela | F | Lvl. 19

Ingrain
Constrict
Absorb
Vine Whip
Sleep Powder
Poison Powder



Hop
Pidgeotto | M | Lvl. 22

Headbutt
Pluck
Twister
Mirror Move
Roost
Wing Attack



Spirit
Alolan Cubone | M | Lvl. 17

Focus Energy
Feint Attack
Bone Club
Headbutt
Swords Dance



Sage
Skiddo | F | Lvl. 17

Tackle
Growth
Vine Whip
Play Nice
Razor Leaf
Leech Seed



Tiny
Pumpkaboo | F | Lvl. 19

Razor Leaf
Shadow Sneak
Confuse Ray
Scary Face
Worry Seed
Trick-or-Treat



???
??? | ? | Lvl. -

It appears to move occasionally. It may be close to hatching.

Inventory

- Pokédex
- Pokégear
- 2-person tent
- Tangles' plant

Moon Stone

Groc

Age 30
Male
Arizona, USA
Seen 1 Day Ago
Posted 4 Days Ago
1,529 posts
10.9 Years
Vera Hill
Chapter 8 - Pokémon Cold Snap
Vermilion City; Monday, May 27th



Vera wakes up earlier than she normally would, noticing something off about the room. At some point during the night, the air conditioning had kicked on, buzzing and rattling slightly as it put out warm air. She wakes up with a dry mouth, but instead of fishing a bottle of water from her bag, she grabs a bottle of designer water from the mini fridge.

She frowns at the taste, finding it oddly reminiscent of the water her mother used to drink. "They charge ₽200 a bottle for this?" She finishes it off with a grimace, opening the curtains to see how bright the city is.

The window is completely frosted over.

Vera steps back in surprise, dropping the empty bottle. Bonnie stirs from her spot near the door, hurrying over to her Trainer. Vera picks her up, the surprise giving way to confusion. "It was not this cold yesterday. What's going on out there?"

She gathers her things, leaving her oversized backpack in the room and only bringing her smaller bag. They said she had the room for 24 hours, so it should be fine to leave it here until dinner, at least. After that… hopefully she'll leave town by then.

"Alright, who wants to go outside with me?" She looks around the room at her team. Bonnie is looking at the window warily, gripping her club tightly. "I don't want you in the cold, Bonnie. Come on, anyone?"

Sapphire curls up tighter on the bed, refusing to leave the soft comfort. That's a no. Goblin and Squitch aren't even paying attention, and Vera doesn't want to have to wrangle them all day. Ebony floats over to her, smiling at her.

"No, Ebony. You have absolutely no body heat. You just absorb it without giving any back, you'll just make me colder." He sinks to the floor in dejection, where Bonnie gives him head pats to cheer him up.

"That just leaves…" She turns to Trixie, who huddles down on the floor, clutching her rags protectively. "What, afraid the wind will take it?" Trixie nods, and Vera rolls her eyes at her team. "You guys are a bunch of babies. Fine, guess I'll go out by myself. With a thousand other people all around me…" Her confidence fades the more she thinks about it.

She forces the thought from her mind, returning her team to their Poké Balls. At least they'll be safe and comfortable in there. She pulls on her flannel shirt for probably the last time. As cold as it looks outside, and as worn down as the shirt is, her first stop will be a clothing store for a new coat.


❄ ❄ Soon… ❄ ❄


The weather outside is frightful. It's May, but it feels like winter. Not that Vera went outside much during the winter… But she was right, her weathered flannel does nothing against the chill. Unsurprisingly, local clothing stores are packed with people and rapidly running out of suitable clothes, this being the off season and everything. Looking around town, Vera finds a small shop with a couple mannequins in the window display wearing summer dresses. Luckily for her, there doesn't seem to be anyone else shopping here right now.

The shopkeeper is a friendly older man who seems delighted to see Vera. "Welcome, welcome! Pretty girl, you want a new dress? You come to the right place! Giuseppe will make you such a dress!"

Vera shivers slightly, moving away from the door. "In this weather? I'll need something that covers my legs. Blue isn't a good color on me."

"Ah, you right! Giuseppe also make suits, if-a you like?" He gestures to the back of the store.

"A suit? Are you… actually, those do look pretty good. I bet I could pull one off…" She shakes her head. No sense getting distracted. "Look, I just need a new jacket. Maybe something warm? Or even a windbreaker?"

"Windbreaker?!" Giuseppe seems offended. "Pretty girl, you come to Giuseppe, you not get just-a any old windbreaker! Come, we find you a-something nice, eh?"

It takes some time, but Vera is able to piece together something more suitable for the cold. Some new pants, matching pink gloves and a scarf, and even a nice coat. It's light, but resilient, with a faux fur collar that reminds her of Iggy. Giuseppe offers to make an upgrade by adding in a heavy liner to protect against the chill, but that she can remove once it gets warmer. Vera gratefully accepts, not wanting to buy a new jacket only to have to get rid of it in a few days.

She waits impatiently while he makes the adjustments in the back, looking around the ship. She finds a pair of earmuffs that match the fur collar of the jacket. When Giuseppe returns with the coat, she asks about their price.

"For you? It's-a your first time, so you can have them for free! They must go with-a your coat, they were-a made for each other!"

"Oh! That's...very generous of you, thank you." She pays with the expense card Palm had given her. Much like the shoes she'd bought in Rock Village, she was willing to consider this an appropriate use of his funds. She keeps the receipt, though, just in case.

Spoiler:


She returns to the Fan Club, changing into her new winter clothes and her hiking boots, just in case. With all that taken care of, her next stop is the Gym. The receptionist gives her directions and a map, so she's able to find her way there no problem.

When she arrives at the Gym, the man behind the desk informs her that Leader Hana is out for the moment, but should be back soon. He invites her to look around the Gym to her leisure. She takes him up on the offer, rather than loiter in the busy lobby.

She follows a hallway towards some of the many indoor pools. When she arrives, she can see some Gym trainers teaching children to swim, apparently. Except… they have Pokémon with them, and they're riding them!

Vera stops by one such pool to watch, surprised to see a young white-haired girl clinging to a Poliwhirl. The Tadpole Pokémon is slowly swimming in a circle, the little girl happily kicking her feet to make it go faster, laughing all the while.

Vera smiles wistfully. She wonders if she would ever have done this as a child, if circumstances had been different. Getting out there, taking a chance, a Pokémon by her side… she shakes her head. No sense wondering "what if?" She's out here now, doing just that. She's just choosing her path more carefully.

As fun as it looks, with the air as cold as it is outside Vera can't imagine getting into the water right now. Out of curiosity, she crouches down to dip her hand into the water. Sure enough, the water itself is nice and warm, but when she pulls her hand out the room temperature feels that much colder.

The *tik tak* of claws on the floor grabs her attention, partly from how out of place it is, but mostly because it suddenly gets faster and louder. As if something was rapidly approaching her. She looks up, seeing a red-orange lizard rushing toward her. A Charmeleon? Wait, a familiar Charmeleon…

"Pepper? Is that you?" Pepper grins as he runs up to her, and Vera reaches out to him. "Hey, buddy! What are you doing here? This isn't a good place to play!" She pulls him into a hug, mindful of his tail, but enjoying the warmth spreading through her at his presence. Pepper cooes at her, butting his head against her chin.

"Oof!" Vera pulls her head back, but grins at the gesture. It was unexpected, but she laughs it off. "You're okay, I'm here. Yeah… wait. If you're here, where's Casey? You're not here by yourself?"

She looks around, Pepper snuggling up to her and slowly knocking her off balance. She ends up sitting on the floor with Pepper in her lap. She looks down at him unapologetically laying on her, and just holds him close and pets his head. "Well, I'm sure he'll find you soon enough. Unless I just run away with you now. Wanna come with me?"

Pepper gives her a worried look, eyes darting between her face and the direction he'd come from.

She sighs, scritching under his chin. "I'm just kidding. I wouldn't take you from Casey. Unless you wanted it. Let's find him, huh? Come on, get off me."

She lightly pushes him out of her lap, enough to get her legs under her. She keeps a hand on his head, concerned someone will steal him if she lets go. Or concerned he'll leave if she doesn't, she's not sure. Pepper rubs his head into her hand gleefully.

She leads Pepper away from the pools, heading back toward the changing rooms. The hallway splits at a T, one path leading to lockers (splitting again into separate rooms), while the other heads back toward the entrance. Vera gently guides Pepper, keeping a hand on his shoulder, though he seems reluctant to go either way. "He's not out here? So he's still out there?" She turns around, facing back out to the pools.

"Pepper!" A voice calls, echoing across the room. Casey turns the corner ahead of Vera, Jordan and one of the Skiddo in tow. "Oh, good, there you- hi Vera!"

"...hi Casey. Jordan. I, uh… I found Pepper."

"Thanks!" Casey opens his arms and Pepper slips out from under Vera's hand to bound into his trainer's arms and be hoisted up onto Casey's hip. "What're you doin' here, waiting to try surfing?"

As Pepper slips away from her touch, she reaches out for him, but stops as Casey picks him up. She suddenly feels less sure, awkwardly letting her hand fall back to her side. "Surf? No, I was just… I mean, I could if I wanted to, but I… don't want to…"

It doesn’t seem like Jordan heard her, as he steps up to them with a smile. “Nah, I bet she’s just here to check out the Gym, we all have to challenge it soon. Right Vera?”

"Y-yeah! Of course, the Gym." She brushes a lock of hair out of her face, almost dislodging her new earmuffs in the process. "Gotta fight the Leader, you know? On a journey, a Gym fighting journey. I'm fine. I'm strong. What about you?"

Casey's casual grin as he says "Mine're doin' alright. I was gonna challenge tomorrow," shows his trademark lack of thought. This is just another day for him, even this unexpected reunion. How can he be so casual? With everything going on outside? With how they'd last left each other?

"Tomorrow. Right. Showed up to a Gym, but not to fight? What, you just wanted to go for a swim?" She crosses her arms over her chest, frowning at the boys. "Or maybe you're just scared. Just like Lavender, gonna go have fun, because you can't face the problem head on."

The perpetual grin slips from Casey's face and his mouth turns down into a frown. "That's unfair." Clipped and concise.

"Unfair. That's un-" Vera sighs, hunching her shoulders as she looks at the floor. She feels very small right now. "Jordan too? You were also going to wait until tomorrow?"

Jordan shrugs, looking slightly uncomfortable from the exchange. “Y-yeah, I mean, could always use a bit more time to study and prepare, you know?”

Vera just nods. Of course he'd side with Casey. The two are best friends. "Well, I'm not waiting." She looks up at them, some of that fire back in her eyes. "I'm going to challenge her right now. The less time I'm here, the better."

She turns on her heel, heading back to the reception area and leaving the boys behind. No footsteps echo on the tile but her own.

A joint post between Groc, Aquacorde, and Juno.

WizardOfOdd

Kirbmeister

Age 20
Male
Workshop of Dreams
Seen 1 Hour Ago
Posted 1 Hour Ago
1,453 posts
1.9 Years

Richard Wolstenholme
Vermillion City, May 27th, Morning



Chapter 7 - 3
A Chilling Morning

Ft. Gwen Alanis and Arianne Chandler

“What the hell is going on.” Richard mumbles to himself.

Today is a weird day for him. Nothing seems to work the way he had hoped beforehand.

He didn’t get the usual nightmares anymore, which is good. But as soon as he woke up earlier, the sight of Uri who was in a much rougher shape than usual caused his day to start in a weird way. And it’s not like Uri had a headache or anything, but it’s… Bruises. Just like the ones he would get if he was taking part in a Pokemon battle.

And that’s not the end of it, as he looks around the lobby all he can see are people wearing thick clothes… Winter clothes, to be exact. This kind of sight in the middle of the summer? This must’ve been part of a wild dream he is currently having.

Except, that it’s not.

He went out by himself earlier this morning, for a jog as usual. A healthy body will lead to a healthy mind which helps a lot in Pokemon battle, and maintaining it by doing early morning jogs is the way to go for him. But as soon as he stepped one foot out of the Pokemon Center, he was immediately greeted by the chilling embrace of the cold wind outside. It’s not cool, but just plain cold, as if he was a popsicle inside a giant freezer.

What a crazy morning, he thinks. Yet there’s no point in continuing to ponder about it, his stomach is grumbling for fuel he needs to fill ASAP, and he intends to do just that. So, he sits down on one of the few spots available before starting to chow down his breakfast.

As he takes a few bites off of his food, he can hear voices slowly make their way to his ears. They are familiar voices that he heard really recently, yesterday even.

“I tell you Gwen, it was outright freezing! I had to wake up, close the window shut and immediately get into my clothes because I was trembling!”

“C’mon, it can’t be that bad, that’s just silly.” Gwen walks in while wearing a tracksuit, it seems she was very comfortable with it, which attracts some attention from the people around that are very confused with her attire. “You’re on my side, right Richard? It’s not that cold!”

Meanwhile, the girl walking beside her seems to be very affected by the cold which Richard deduces by looking at her tired eyes and the multi-layered clothing she wore.

“Well… sure, I’m not the best when it comes to enduring the cold, but I can tell this isn’t normal. Richard, did you try to open the window of your room before getting here? Because if you did, I’m sure you’ll agree with me!”

“Hi, girls! About the cold… Uh, I mean it’s still kind of cold here and they have turned on the heater which is pretty telling how cold it is outside… Hey, have you two had breakfast yet? The menu today’s pretty great, and you know what they say, shouldn’t start the day with an empty stomach.” Richard smiles widely.

“I can’t believe you!” Gwen pouts. “But fine. I guess I’ll take advice from the enemy and get some food. Come on Bead!”

“Anyway… yeah, hi Richard. Hope it’s ok if we join you for breakfast, although apparently the weather talk was more important!” Arianne laughs nervously. “I’ll be getting something as well before even more people start queueing up!”

Richard can’t help but let out a chuckle seeing how the two acted in front of him. Despite the weird stuff happening around him, he’s glad that at least some things manage to stay the same as he expected.

As soon as both Ari and Gwen return to the table with their food, Richard starts to have some small talk with the two.

“So, are you two going to challenge the gym leader today?” Richard asks before sipping his warm tea.

“Hell yeah I am!” Gwen gloats as her eyes sparkle. “I’m feeling pretty good about it too!”

“Hm… I hope so too!” Arianne smiles, although not as excitedly, as she takes a bite of her french toast. “But what about you Richard?”

“I think I’m going to sit out today… There’s... Let’s just say... Surprising development. But hey, good for you two! I think I’ll join you two to watch, you know… Grabbing some pointers here and there, haha.”

Gwen furrows her eyebrows. “Oh come on guys, that’s no attitude to have about facing a gym leader!”

Arianne tries to speak up but she stops for a moment before she talks. “Well last time didn’t go too well, you know. But I hope things will be a bit better today! Also…” She munches some more food. “Also I’m not sure if I want to stay in this place for too long, with all these weird things happening. I’m going to have some trouble even getting to the Gym, haha!”

“That’s quitter talk!” Gwen roars. “You can’t just walk into the gym with that attitude and expect to win!”

”Hey, don’t be too loud. People are staring at us you know?” Richard maintains his smile as he talks to Gwen. “Well, I do agree that we do need enthusiasm for the Gym battle, but I think we should deal with the task at hand first. I mean these foods aren't going to finish themselves, you know? Let’s eat while they’re still hot, and by doing that we can quickly battle the Gym Leader, right? So let’s talk less and eat more, shall we? That way we can probably hang out together as soon as this weird cold disappears.”

As both Gwen and Ari eat at a fast pace, Richard watches over them with a smile on his face before he remembers about the cold.

The temperature outside is 100% not something he would see during Summer, most likely it was created using an unnatural method. What can possibly cause that kind of effect on the environment?

...I have a bad feeling about this.
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