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Pokémon Shattered Crests: Book #1 Lines Broken Page 3

Started by Vragon2.0 July 18th, 2018 2:14 PM
  • 59 replies


Darkinium Z

Dani California
Seen 2 Hours Ago
Posted 2 Hours Ago
5,588 posts
13 Years
Oh so the first scene is just Jaron having a bad dream there. To be honest since he's a water type being submerged in water is probably the last thing to do in terms of hurting/killing him. That's probably just me, though.

So Jasmine and Dolly checked in with same last names, huh. I think it's Jasmine taking Dolly's last name considering her past. Not sure if you mention how last name are given in your world yet.

Okay, so I'm right on my guess, or at least Dolly's last name is confirmed. I think I remember Miss Dresha and wonder how she's able to move around if she's a fish Pokmeon heh. But oh dear over the news of her death. I wonder how bad this will affect things here.

Foul Play
[Chapter Nine up!]


Say it with me (Vray-gun)

As if I'd be one to say
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 4 Days Ago
256 posts
1.2 Years
Contains: Language, Blood, Violence, Child Death [15]
Chapter 34
Stinging Rain

Vragon stood outside the door. A heavy look was all he could express as he knocked on the door for the fourth time. “Jaron…” he said to the silence in the room. “I’m…here for you if you need me. Just…” Vragon tried to turn the knob but sighed upon finding it locked. He looked once more at the door and walked down to his room.

I don’t like this. He thought in his head. Jaron, Ciecro, both of them. Miss Dresha was such a sweet lady, who could do this? The fraxure opened the door to his room and plopped down into the chair. It happened while we were away. They said she had a stroke from some traumatic stress, but… his mind darted to something. A phrase that was said during it. “We found her on the stairs.” Vragon knew what this meant, as did the rest. Someone had taken her and somehow caused all this. But it wasn’t a simple thief since nothing was stolen. Maybe the shock of harming the old lady was it?

Vragon leaned back into his chair. He didn’t like where the past thirty minutes of speculation led him. It probably was the red eyes thugs maybe. They knew Jaron and Ciecro so it’s possible they linked it all. No one else had a reason to do it. And… Vragon bit his lip a little as his eyes grew full of sadness. That means, they hurt her and she’s gone because they wanted to know where I was. Looking up at the ceiling, Vragon remembered when the gallade had entered his mind. Who was to say the same wasn’t done for her?

He just sat there, leaning in his chair, guilt infecting his soul. A few tears dropped as he wiped them aside. She introduced me to them…let me stay before I got my own residing. She even- he went on and on. Listing off the many things she had done for him in his mind as if trying to make the weight on his heart that much more crushing.

Finally, enough was enough. He got up and firmly walked straight back to Jaron’s room and was about to grab the doorknob when he was promptly stopped by the arm. His eyes looked up at Dolly’s brown eyes looking back.

“Vray, don’t.”

A sigh escaped the fraxure as he said, “I just wanted to talk with him abo-”

“I mean don’t blame yourself.” Her eyes narrowed as Vragon looked back at her surprised. “I know that look,” She said, moving his arm away from the door. “We’ll talk about it with him together, but you aren’t going to go in there, and say it’s your fault this happened because it isn’t.”

His head fell ashamed, but she patted the shoulder and gave him a hug, indicating there was no harm done. “Sorry,” he said and she gave a shake of her head.

“It’s fine. I understand. Now,” Dolly knocked on the door. “Jaron, please open up.” Her voice was soft and slow. “It’s not good to be alone in this time. Not for you.”

No reply still. Dolly gave a big sigh as she looked at Vragon. “Vray, I think…I think you should go.”

Vragon’s eyes widened. “What?” he queried, however, he stopped as Dolly gave him a serious but assuring gaze. His head lowered and he started walking away.

After going a little way and turning the corner he noticed Ciecro at the end, leaning on the wall. His arms were crossed, his back leaned on the wall, his head was low, and his eyes were firmly shut as if he was trying to push his eyes further in.

“Ciecro,” Vragon announced, walking over.

Ciecro opened his eyes but didn’t look at him. He remained silent as Vragon leaned on the wall next to him. They both leaned there in silence until Vragon broke the silence.

“I’m really sorry, Ciecro.” The charmeleon just gave a grunt in reply, leading Vragon to let his head stare at the floor.

“Vray,” Ciecro suddenly spoke. The fraxure looked up at him as Ciecro got off the wall. “…I need some alone time.”

He started to walk away but something in Vragon didn’t settle for that. Quickly, he grabbed Ciecro’s shoulder about to say something. To his dismay, it was swatted away. “I said I need some f**kin’ time!” Vragon shrank back as Ciecro gritted his teeth and looked at the side, angry but upset he yelled. “I’m…” Vragon hung his head and turned around. “I’m sorry, I’ll leave you alone.”

The fraxure walked off back to his room, leaving Ciecro alone. The charmeleon’s fists tightened as his anger boiled. He wanted to punch something. But he stopped as he looked at his right hand, shaking as it did before. He growled and headed to go for a walk.

Jaron sat in his room; his eyes were still leaking tears as he rested his head on his arms. The sounds of Dolly still knocking on the door filled the room, but he didn’t care. Nothing mattered right now. Why her? He kept saying over and over in his head as the vision of his dream last night filled his mind with terrible thoughts.

Finally, he moved his head to look up at the window. The droplets of rain were hitting it and running down in large amounts and great speed due to how intense the storm was outside. Jaron turned his head once more to the door. He could almost see Dolly’s pleas and the gentle knocks on the door.

Slowly, he got out of his seat, walked over to the door, and undid the bolt. He headed back to his bed this time as Dolly opened the door.

“Jaron,” she said, walking over to him as he sat down, his head low and sniffling. The kangaskhan joined him on the bed, resting her hands on her knees and joining Jaron in looking at the floor. “Jaron,” she said again, “Jaron, I know it’s a lot to take in.”

Her words sounded basic. Nothing new to him. Just like the death of someone he cared for, by someone that wanted something. Building up in anger, Jaron slowly started shaking a little as a scowl crossed his face. “What’s going to happen now?” Jaron asked, looking at her, not caring what sweet phrase he interrupted.

Dolly put her arms on Jaron’s shoulders and said, “I don’t know. However, I know I’m not going to let anyone hurt you or your bro-” Her arms were knocked off.

“How do you f**king know that‽” Jaron demanded, his eyes showing anger and sadness. “You think I ever expected she’d die? How can I know you won’t die too?” His eyes were gushing tears as he kept verbally lashing out as Dolly listened, watching in serious silence with understanding. “Those red eyes bastards first took mom and dad, then Seliph left us to deal with them, and now Dresha is gone! What makes you not be next, or Vragon, or my brother‽ What if I’m left alone‽”

Dolly looked at him with tearful sympathy as Jaron stared back at her. His eyes showed the type of hurt that breaded hatred.

“I can’t have you all die!... I just can’t…” With shaking, Jaron slowly backed up till his wobbly legs caused him to sit on the floor, holding his head with sniffling. “Why is it the ones I care about the ones that go?” He started to cry as his hands dropped to his lap, shielding the ground from his dropping tears.

Dolly slowly got up and walked over. Getting on her knees, she put her arms around him and hugged the sad little boy. “Jaron…”

“I had a dream last night,” Jaron said with a sniffle, not moving his gaze from the ground. The little tears from his eyes rolled down his cheeks as he elaborated. “I thought I had woke up. I looked around but couldn’t find any of you so I headed downstairs. And, no one was there, not even in the town. I…I felt scared, alone, and….I just had to find someone.” He gave a few sniffles as he wiped his eyes. “Dolly…”

Dolly moved her hand to his chin and lifted it up so he could look at her. “It’s okay Jaron. You know me. It’s safe to tell me how you feel.” Her eyes conveyed the care she wanted to show as Jaron’s eyes lowered slightly.

“Dolly…ever since this attack. I’ve been afraid of losing Vray. At first, it was just him, but with Seliph here. I find myself…needing him back to. And…I realized it was affecting Ciecro. I feel like my world is falling apart around me and I want to stop it, but all I have is some dumb promise.”

“Promise?” Dolly asked as Jaron wiped his eyes.

“Yeah…me and Vray made a promise in the last town. To…watch each other’s backs. Heh, it was before you came in on us.” He gave a little grin as Dolly gave a little chuckle.

“Yeah, sorry about that.” She then moved her hand on top of his croconaw head, catching him off guard. “Jaron, how you feel makes sense. I’m glad you told me. Though, I want you to-” Dolly paused, trying to figure what to say. This was starting to make Jaron a little nervous and Dolly realized she was on a timer. “Well…” she finally stated, “I want you to remember I’m here for you. So is Ciecro, Jasmine, and I bet my bread that new friend of yours, Garon, is there for you too.”

Jaron gave a little smile, despite still being sad as he thanked her for the time. “I…I just…” a sigh escaped his mouth as Dolly hugged him. His eyes looked at her as she said, her head next to his.

“Take all the time you need to recover hun. Loss is something we all struggle with.” There seemed to be strong truth in though words. Truth that Jaron might have suspected Dolly had felt once. But he didn’t pry; he was content being hugged by someone he knew cared despite her silly quips. It’s nice to have you, Jaron thought as he looked at the rain outside the window and finally shut his eyes to cry some more.

Seliph, rested his back on the wall. His head was low and his arms were crossed with tension in their weaving. The blue eyes were closed and his breathing was slow and quiet. Across from him sat Jasmine, her head low and sad. “That’s…basically what we just found out.” She wiped her face a little, to catch any forming tears. “Just…in case you didn’t know.”

Seliph was quiet. Though his muscles showed tension, tension from anger. “Thank you for telling me,” he said with a composed tone as he turned to leave. Jasmine didn’t stop him nor say anything, as he slammed the door behind him and likewise slammed his fist on the desk.

So you claim another, He growled in his mind as his fist tightened. This is all wrong. This… He let out a sigh. This is just…too much. The eyes of anger curved to ones of sorrow. Not for himself, but for what the news meant. Deep down, he knew it. Who else would harm an old fish like Dresha, let alone while they were gone? It’s because of me and us…Meaning likely they know my brothers’.

Seliph sat in his chair and held his head. This is all wrong. Over and over this phrase resounded in his mind. It was all he thought about, even time seemed out of his tracking.

A knock came on his door. He quickly turned and after a few breaths to calm himself asked, “Yes?”

“It’s Garon. We need to talk.”

Seliph hesitated at first but finally gave them permission.

Garon opened the door as Swift scampered in and closed it behind them softly. The large garchomp looked at Seliph, not with a judgmental stare from earlier but one of empathy. He walked over to where Seliph sat and gave a head bow. “I’m sorry for my rudeness before.”

Seliph gave a sigh, admitting his own faults too in that hash out from before. “So…what do you want to talk with me about?” Seliph had a pretty good guess what it was though. Before they could answer, Seliph decided to see if he was right. “Is it about my brothers now? Where they’ll stay.”

“Yep,” Swift said in a melancholy tone. “They aren’t safe here anymore, not with their connection to you.”

Seliph gave a little laugh, perplexing the two. “So I guess I ruined their lives again, huh,” Seliph joked, but more out of guilt in how true it felt.

Garon gave a sigh and sat on the ground, not pleased with the jest but also understanding why it was made. “Stay on topic, Seliph,” he requested and Seliph apologized with a nod.

“Anways,” Swift began, “We’re in a rut now. Your brothers have been identified, meaning they can’t just stay in their old home. The red eyes would use them to get to you and you to get to-”

“The vial.” Seliph’s eyes narrowed as Swift nodded in confirmation.

“Yeah…” The heliolisk felt a chill in his spine as he asked, “Do you…have it here?”

Seliph slowly got up and walked over to the drawer. After pulling out a pick and unlocking something in the drawer, Seliph revealed the red eyes formula, resting in its container. The other two looked at it with scowls, more of defensive gestures rather than scoff.

“I see, so that’s it,” Garon spoke, his voice low and growly, “Have you found a proper formula to counter it yet?”

Seliph shook his head. “I’m not my mother in that field,” he admitted, locking the vial back up and putting it back in. “Trust me, I’ve thrown all I have at it.”

Garon moved a talon to his chin and began to ponder while Swift walked over to the window. “So, is that all of it, or is there more?” he asked.

“I can’t answer that.”

Swift nodded in understanding. “Okay, so we need to find a safe haven for your brothers, while also keeping the liquid there protected. Seliph, do you have any ideas?”

“I don’t know of any place to well…really stay.” Seliph shoved his webbed hands into his pockets. “Not like I’ve settled anywhere for too long. I mean, I’ve been pretty active and hard at work not getting hunted.”

“I can see,” Swift answered, a little respect in his voice. “I mean, you’re what twenty and you’ve already fully evolved.”

Seliph gave a sigh. “Well, back to subject.” Seliph’s arms rocked a little, a little indication he wasn’t really happy about the truth Swift said. “My brothers need someplace to stay and well…I don’t have any ideas. Do you two know somewhere?”

The two looked at each other, grins crossed their faces as they looked back. “Oh, but why ask? I mean, a place to stay for your brothers might be bad if it’s from two mons you can’t trust.”

“Oh come on,” Seliph exclaimed, crossing his arms with some frustration.

Swift and Garon chuckled a little as Swift resumed. “It’s fine; we aren’t that stingy. Besides, it’s in our interest as well. Anyways, I think we might know of someone. You ever met your grandfather?”

Seliph raised a finger to muk chin to think. “Mother or father’s side?”

“Father’s” Garon answered, “Your mother’s father passed before you were five.”

“I see.” Seliph shook his head and moves his arms to his sides. “Nope, I haven’t ever really met my dad’s father.”

“Well, he’s been out of Team Alpha since over two decades ago but he’s still pretty strong despite age. His name is Abdule and…while he is a little strict he is probably our best option.” Garon elaborated. “You see he trained a lot with some of the now Norfarion Generals when they were young and even participated in the Amestrian-Yveshian war. It’s hard to really help keep him down.”

“I agree,” Swift said, turning his gaze to Seliph. “We met him once, he’s some old guy yeah and a bit stubborn, but he’ll do his best to keep you all okay. Plus, I know he’ll be glad to know you three are alright. I mean, we didn’t know you three were till you told us and proved it.”

Seliph thought about the suggestion and despite how perfect this would fix things something about it seemed to deter him. After giving it some thought Seliph asked, “So, where does he live?”

“In Cordrian.” Garon tilted his head as Seliph’s faced changed from curiosity to discouragement. “What’s wrong?” the large dragon asked.

“Cordian…in Norfair.” Seliph gave a sigh. “Well, I suppose that would do for my siblings, I mean, Cordian is near the Cinder Faction capital so they can get training. More than likely, grandfather would have them undergo military schooling, correct?”

Swift gave a nod and added, “It is required by Norfarion law for at least two years of military education.”

Seliph felt a little hesitant. “That would be pretty restrictive.”

It was then Swift started to figure out what was deterring Seliph. He made his way to Seliph’s side and looked up at him, saying, “Seliph, are you hesitant going to your homeland?”

“Huh me?” Seliph acted, “Why would I? I mean, it sounds perfectly-”

Swift wasn’t buying it. He promptly interrupted with a “Seliph.” The greninja looked at him as with what looked like a heavy but determined stare said, “Seliph, if you’ve been working on the formula for as long as you have and haven’t figured out a means to even approach it. Then maybe you should turn it into the professionals.”

Seliph scowled at this suggestion. “I can figure it out, I just need to research more. I can handle this, and with my brothers safely out of peril then I ca-”

“See, right there.” Swift pointed at Seliph, who gave him a confused look. “That’s your problem.” Swift’s kind tone was now replaced with one of sharp criticism, while Garon just watched with a wide-eyed stare at the scene unfold. “You keep wanting to do things yourself when you clearly aren’t capable of doing it yourself. I don’t know why you ‘need’ to do this, but I think it says a lot when you talk about having your brothers go to safety as ‘out of the way’.”

Swift walked over to the drawer and pulled it open. Seliph lashed out with his hand to shut it but Swift gave him a glare that made Seliph shudder inside. Swift then let go and faced him directly. “That mentality made you drop them in the first place, right? Not get any help until you absolutely needed it. Don’t you get it Seliph? Something is wrong with you. This isn’t some research to fix things, this is getting to be an obsession. It always is if you ‘need’ something and have to cut someone like your siblings out of your life.”

“How dare you!” Seliph shot back. “You don’t know my reasons for doing anyt-”

“I don’t need to know to see how important it is to you,” Swift replied back. “This hasn’t been about a cure as much as it’s been giving the red eyes what for, right?”

This attack on his integrity just made Seliph angrier. “What? Am I selfish for wanting to stop them‽”

“No, but you’re misguided if you think that doing it by yourself will stop them.” Swift walked away from the drawer and looked at him. “Seliph, you have a problem. You couldn’t trust anyone but yourself and look where it has gotten you. Eight years of isolation. Working on your own to solve some ‘evil juice’, letting them grow up without their brother.”

Seliph gave a grumble at this being brought up again. “I was keeping them safe. Why can’t any of you see that‽ I was identified; they weren’t. I needed them to stay somewhere safe so I could focus on unraveling that!” Seliph pointed at the drawer.

Swift gave a little chuckle making Seliph demand what was so funny. “You know what? Here’s a funny idea, why didn’t you come back to them and help them to Norfair when you had the chance? Why not be honest about why you had to leave?”

“I didn’t have any chance and telling my brothers why would make them come after me.”

“That’s a lie unless they were on you all the time. There’s no way even the red eyes could keep tabs on you for that long. I mean, you killed one of their iris leaders and that spurred them on you more, right? If you were just doing the formula, why not lay low then help your kin out to Norfair so you three could work together on this?”

Seliph crossed his arms and turned around. “You’re awfully demanding of a scared twelve-year-old.”

“Eight f**king years, Seliph!” Swift stated, “You had eight years to return. Yet you claim you researched on that formula and here you are not even closer to solving it than your mother. You basically let them grow up without you and didn’t even bring anything from it.”

“Why are you on my case for that‽” Seliph shouted, “They’re happier there than running around with me all the time.”

“So why not stay in Norfair once you sneak them out with you? Then they’d be even happier.”

“I couldn’t…ugh…you see,” Seliph fumbled as Swift finally put the pieces together.

“Hmph, I get it.” Seliph looked at him, wondering what he was about to say. “You’re…” Swift’s eyes turned from an angry scowl to one that looked concerned. He let out a sigh as he uttered, “You’re…desperate.”

Something in Seliph snapped at hearing that. He managed to stay quiet, but inside he was full of fury.

Swift let out a sigh as his stare ventured over to the drawer. “Seliph, are you sure you can handle that? I’ve heard stories about that formula. What some rehabilitating red eyes say. Like how there’s something in there. Seliph, are you struggling against i-”

Seliph slammed his hand firmly on the desk cutting him off. “I can handle it,” he exclaimed. “And if you had any sense you’d see my eyes aren’t red.” He firmly gestured to his angry blue eyes. Swift was about to clarify what he meant but Seliph had enough. “Would you just stop it‽ I’ve gone through enough hardship trying to find a damn cure without you adding to it!”

“Seliph, that’s enough,” Garon interjected.

“F**k off!” Seliph spat at him. “All you two have done since coming here is question me.” The two mons looked at him with their unwavering attention as Seliph ranted. “First you bring up that I’m rushing it, then act like I had all the ability and time to make things right with my brothers not understanding what I was doing, and now you’re calling me crazy‽”

“No, it’s not that Seliph.” Swift tried to explain but it was too late. Seliph walked to the door and opened it. “Tell Dolly whenever we decide what we’ll do next I’ll be there. Till then, I need some air from two finicky Norfairions breathing down my neck.”

Swift’s temper got the better of him at this. “I’m pressing this because it’s important. I’m sorry you can’t see past your own vista to notice what you’re leaving lying as you go on. Seliph, Freya nor Gathor would want this for you.”

Seliph faced him and angrily shouted. “Don’t you dare use my parents against me!”

“I will if it means keeping you from dying a second time!” Swift shouted back. Their gazes were locked, with tension that if physical could cut even the hardest berry. It wasn’t till Garon got up and separated the two that they stopped staring hatefully at the other.

“This isn’t going to aid us.” Garon looked from one to the other. “Seliph, Swift, both of you need to stop attacking. We’re not each other’s enemies. Swift,” he looked down at the heliolisk, “as a member of Team Alpha, you know better than to rush head-on.” Swift’s gaze averted, with an irritated expression. “Seliph.” the large dragon looked at the greninja. “I only ask you to keep yourself from isolating.”

“I’ve had eight years of that and I managed to end a member in their Iris council. I’m fine Garon, I don’t need your concern or worry.”

The dragon put a talon on Seliph’s shoulder. “I’ll never stop being concerned for you. Not because you aren’t capable, but because I and Swift care.” Swift’s eyes shifted a little from frustration to somber as his arms dropped to their sides. “Seliph, we’ll do our damnedest to not lose any of you a second time. If we come off as too protective or restrictive because of that, I’m sorry but please don’t think we aren’t on your side.”

Seliph’s head fell slightly as he mulled over his ranting emotions and what Garon asked of him. “I’m…going for a walk.” Seliph removed the talon as he let out a sigh. He walked over to the drawer and once again took out the vial. He stared at it with a firm gaze and clasped it firmly into his hands. “Swift…Garon.”

The two looked at him. He faced them and said, “…Nevermind.” He walked out and shut the door behind him, putting the vial into his vest as he left.

Swift’s head fell, the feelings of guilt starting to show. “I shouldn’t have been so hard on him for that.”

Garon gave an agreeing sigh. They both looked at the door with concerned faces. After some time, Garon’s face went to reminiscing. “I miss that face he made when we visited that one time.” Swift looked at Garon, who was wiping his eyes a little with a talon. “He looked so…calm and content.”

Swift once again looked at the door. He felt the pain in the past, the times Garon wept for their dead comrades and their dead kids. There was something about having seen them, their faces so happy and nice that made the news, the sight, the smell of destruction that their second visit brought that much more devastating. Swift’s fist clenched. I need to make this right.

He walked for the door, prompting Garon to look. “Garon, I may be late for the meeting.” His eyes darted to his friend as he requested, “If we aren’t back in time, give the suggestion we talked about.”

“Swift?” Garon walked over but stopped as Swift raised a ‘stop’ hand.

“I need to hear him out. Alone.” Garon reluctantly gave a nod as Swift gave a smile at the understanding. “Thanks, friend,” Swift said as he opened the door and headed out.

Garon’s head fell. His feelings felt all over the place but mostly in worry. He let out a heavy sigh as he opened the door to leave the room as well.

< O >

Heavy rain fell from the cloudy heavens above. The light of a night sky blanketed a small port town in shadow. The wind was howling and rocking some of the banners or loose things around that were in its way. The lower part of a dirty and worn brown cloak blew in the wind as its wearer walked through the alleys near the port. This mon was large yet kept dry from the cloak he wore.

“What we got here?” Someone said from behind the stranger, walking out from one of the openings. This weavile smirked a dark smile as the stranger turned his head slightly, not looking at him though. “Lost are we, viaggiatore,” The mon said with a little chuckle under his breath. “Well, you must be a un viaggiatore straniero.”

This weavile started walking towards him as four more popped out, surrounding the mon in the middle. “And well,” one said with a dark grin, “this is a toll path.”

The stranger exhaled as he said in a low tone. “I don’t want trouble.”

“Ah, your accent. So you’re a fellow Valenor then, heh. Well, pay up what’s on yah and we’ll let you be on your merry way.” Two of them walked around and stood at the stranger’s sides.

“I possess no money,” The stranger said. This initiated the one on the right to leap for the side. The stranger swung his large arm and knocked him away, but this was merely a diversion. The leader and one at the end fired ice beams at the stranger’s chest and back while the leaped on the head and proceeded to slice. To his surprise despite being hit by two sets of ice beam, the stranger quickly pulled the weavile off and threw him into another.

The leader took his chance to turn it back to their favor. He leaped up and went for a slice at the head.

Nearby a little lotad boy was jumping in one puddle after another on the way home. He wore a happy little face as he nodded to two local peacekeepers, who gave smiles in return. “Stay safe on your way home,” one said, to which he replied with, “yes sir.” He splashed a little more along the way till the noise of something striking stone came from his right. Once he looked down the alley, he saw them. A brown cloaked stranger being attacked by four weaviles. Ones the boy had heard about in some news his father had said. Quickly the boy called for the rangers.

The leader weavile gave the stranger a smirk. His claws contain little clippings from scraping an aggron cheek. “That’s your last warning,” he said. To his surprise, the stranger stood up straight and tried to put his hood on. However, it was too late. “Wha? Heh, you’re a red eye huh.”

The other weaviles joined up with the leader right as the peacekeepers arrived. “Interrompere!” one shouted, readying an energy ball.

“Good to see you, sir,” The leader said as he looked back at the mon. “Found this red eyes walking suspiciously down the alley. He tried resisting and we were having trouble. Red eyes are to be brought in and questioned, correct?”

“You four will come as well,” the guard said with a stern tone. He walked over to the stranger with an inhibitor neckpiece. “Don’t fight back.”

“Please, I was merely defendin-” the stranger started trying to keep the guard from putting the collar on.

“Come on, we’re just going to question you and sort this mess out.” The guard tried to grab the aggron’s head while the aggron attempted to pull the arm away. This little struggle resulted in the guard accidentally hitting the right side of the aggron’s neck.

What happened next surprised the six as some mechanical noise activated and some form of metal was building on the stranger’s face. The hood he had on was pulled off by the building, revealing the finished product of a dark, intimidating red light like an eye with armor plating all over the face.

“What the heck?” the guard said, dropping the neck inhibitor and slowly backing away.

Pathos gave a sigh as he pressed the thing on his neck again, deconstructing the helm. With a rather sad expression, Pathos looked at the guard. “Forgive me.”

The guard tilted his head as the mon continued. “For not saving you from yourselves.” In an instant, Pathos grabbed the mon by the throat and slammed him to the ground with enough force to break the skull. The other guard shot his energy ball, but the aggron dodged it with a quick step. He then aimed his arm and fired a powerful flash canon beam straight at the guard, knocking him into a wall. The mon’s uniform and body were torn up on the left side from being scrapped on the wall by the powerful beam.

“What the-” the head weavile started, but didn’t get to finish. As the firm grip of the aggron grabbed his forehead and back and twisted, snapping the neck. The aggron quickly lunged at another weavile, slicing his arms off with two Fury Cutter’s swinging down. He quickly spun around and grated his fists together forming sparks from Autonomize.

“Let’s get out of here!” one of the two last weaviles shouted as he rushed out, kicking the lotad boy in the process. The two ran, but they were no match for the speed of an autonomized aggron. He leaped up and crushed the leading one with his landing and twisted his body, stabbing the last one right through the head with a condensed Fury Cutter sticking out of the arm like a thin blade. He retracted it and let the body fall over as he walked down the alley, to the lotad trying to hide.

The boy looked up, terrified at the imposing figure of the murderer looking down at him. His red eyes, looking so cold, emotionless, and scary. The boy curled back as the aggron got down and moved his hand to the boy’s head. “Hai un nome?”

In a quiet, scared voice, the boy replied with. “Lorenzo.”

“Lorenzo…” the aggron’s eyes lowered to a sad expression. “That’s…a sweet name.” The boy looked up, confused as the aggron moved his arm away. “I’m sorry, Lorenzo. Rest.” Before the boy could even think a Furry Cutter spike from Pathos’s fist swung up and sliced down upon him.

Pathos stood up, ensured the rest of them were dead and looked around at what was left. The stranger looked up at the sky, as the rain fell on his head. His eyes narrowed as if he was scowling at the clouds in the night sky. “Forgive me…” he said as if to their souls that now no longer resided in their bodies. “I will achieve success…for the sake of all of you. I must. Till then, please forgive my sin done to all of you. Lorenzo…” His fists clenched as a little growl came from under his breath. If emotions could be seen, Pathos would be covered with bother and rage. It never gets old…even though I know the truth. Perhaps… He looked at his open palm. There were scratches and cuts but it was still strong and able. Perhaps, I must feel nothing even in this wake, nothing that is enough to sway my mission. To think that I could kill a sweet boy younger than Ch-… He let out a sigh as his eyes stared up at the rainy clouds, rain striking his metal head. I know how far I’ve come, where my road ends, and yet you still linger in my heart. My burden to carry while I have the will to go on. I must go on. Pathos’s head lowered as he mumbled a few silent words.

He closed his eyes and put his hood back on, walking away from the scene with a heavy scowl on his face and eyes that looked cold and lifeless. May your lives and souls be happy. Though your time here was cut short, I wish for you all peace in silence. Find rest wherever you are now.


un viaggiatore straniero – a foreign traveler

Interrompere – stop

Hai un nome – You have a name?

“A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.”
– Unknown


Darkinium Z

Dani California
Seen 2 Hours Ago
Posted 2 Hours Ago
5,588 posts
13 Years
The first few parts of this chapter I already expected the boys to be crushed over Dresha's death. Probably will be a bit until they get better.

Hm, I admit Swift and Garon interrogating Seliph for the thousandth time is getting a bit tiresome. I already get that Seliph is too stubborn to get help and trust someone (and probably obsessed with that vital now). Seems like Swift will finally do something about that, though. There are a couple new tidbits though, like the grandfather and possible new location the boys will go.

Onto Pathos's scene. Oh boy that must be the most violent scene you've written so far. And whaaa Pathos killing Lorenzo. ;_;

On the grammar front, I noticed a few instances where you have more than one character speak in one paragraph. For instance:

“No, it’s not that Seliph.” Swift tried to explain but it was too late. Seliph walked to the door and opened it. “Tell Dolly whenever we decide what we’ll do next I’ll be there. Till then, I need some air from two finicky Norfairions breathing down my neck.”
This paragraph I would separate Swift and Seliph's dialogue in separate paragraphs.

Foul Play
[Chapter Nine up!]


Say it with me (Vray-gun)

As if I'd be one to say
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 4 Days Ago
256 posts
1.2 Years
Contains: Language [13]
Chapter 35
Trying to Look Deeper

It was in the afternoon, at the docks in a Sorphian port trading town. No other mons were around the landing spot near the backs of the storage facilities. Only Daemon stood there, waiting as a boat slowly came and ported.

Trishula jumped over the side before the crossing came down and walked over to the ghost waiting. Once they were about three feet apart, Trishula stopped and they both just stared at the other. No greeting, no gestures, no words just absolute silence.

Daemon finally gave a cough. “It’s been some time…Trishula.”

The dragon gave a hefty sigh. “Let’s just get this over with.”

“Not even a hello?” Daemon said with a little lighter tone.

The dragon looked at him with an annoyed stare but finally caved in. “Daemon.”

“Hello friend.” Daemon extended his right arm to Trishula, who took the hand and shook it. “I hope it was a fine trip.”

“Fine,” Trishula started walking brushing, as Daemon joined his side.

“If you’re wondering why I am here, I’m supposed to escort you to Brielle,” Daemon informed Trishula, who merely gave a grunt as a reaction.

“I fail to see why I would need an escort.”

Daemon shrugged, curling his fist and placing it under his chin as he admitted, “I’m at a loss to the reason as well. Your master, Azazel, didn’t really say why.” He lowered his fist and instead folded his arms behind his back during his continued speculation. “I figure he more than likely wanted me to bring you to have company that was familiar.”

“Hmph.” Trishula started walking faster, as if these words stung a little.

Daemon stopped and with a rather condescending tone woven into his formal speech said, “Perhaps, he wants you to cool down on the way here.”

Trishula stopped, fists tightening and a little snarl.

“Am I incorrect to assume?” Daemon crossed his arms, on his chest this time, as Trishula remained silent. Assessing there was no need to pry further, Daemon decided to change the topic to a lighter subject. “I hope Plageues wasn’t too obnoxious when he arrived. I wouldn’t blame you if you sliced that tongue of his off but I at least hope he didn’t bring it to that point.”

Trishula turned his head slightly and once again look outwards. “No closer than you are bringing me right now.”

“Why is that?” Daemon asked, though he pretty much knew the answer.

Trishula let out a sigh as he turned around to face the dusknoir. “Are you really going to force me on this?” He inquired, his eyes indicating irritation though lacking in his normal aggression.

“You know my answer.” Daemon floated over to Trishula, whose eyes lowered and looked to the side rather meekly.

There was just silence for a while as Trishula’s breathing slowed and Daemon twiddled his thumbs behind his back. Finally, Daemon uncapped his arms and said, “I understand.” The ghost put a hand on the dragon’s shoulder. “This mission meant a lot to you and Azazel pulling you out of this has cut your ego down.”

“…You know that’s not all,” Trishula said, a little harried by Daemon’s care pestering.

Daemon gave a little huff. “Well, then show me.” He let go of the shoulder and instead gestured Trishula to follow him into a dark alley. Daemon then held out his hand for Trishula to take.

The dragon wore a rather shamefaced frown, hesitant to really partake.

“No artificial connections.” Daemon floated closer, letting his hand fall to his side. “Trishula, it’s been too long. Whatever Azazel did, whatever he told you, please understand you are mine and even Plageues’s friend.” Daemon took Trishula’s hand gently in his, molded it into a fist, and cupped his around it as the dragon watched, a bit timorous at this action. “I don’t want you to forget that. Now,” Daemon opened the fist and moved it to his chest, looking firmly at Trishula.

“I couldn’t ever forget that,” Trishula stated firmly, looking to the side rather guilty. “I just…I don’t…” Trishula looked at Daemon with an honest face and admitted, “he did so many soul links with me, I just don’t…” he let out a sigh. “It makes me on edge.”

Daemon shook his head slowly. “Forget how it makes you feel. Forget that you still have it. Azazel, may be your master, but he doesn’t own what we three had and still have. Trishula,” Daemon said, letting out a sigh, “You and Plageues keep me content even how I am. So please, let’s talk. Azazel can’t reach you in our soul link.”

Trishula paused, looking down and thinking deeply. Despite this, Daemon’s pleading and his own emotions won and he activated the soul link. Trishula’s eyes closed and after a few seconds he opened them wide.

He was standing on a stone surface that was flat and carved into a mountain. His head shifted to a specific direction, as if he knew exactly where to look. His eyes fell upon a stadium made in the side of a mountain, exactly as he remembered it. It was lined with many rock carved rows with mons cheering and awing at the matches happening. He walked to the edge to watch from the edge above the mons below him, engrossed in the sport, and watched for a few seconds before looking left.

There it was, South City. The Sorphian border city, with its signature clock tower stood tall and high in the night sky, as did it’s siblings in the other cardinal cities. Bright light came from inside the clock tower, illuminating the display of eleven o’clock that was seeable even from where Trishula stood.

“You seem to recall well,” Daemon said, floating over to him. The normal shoulder overcoat Daemon was wearing was no longer there. His right shoulder was bare, showing a Norfairion crest. Daemon’s one eye turned to look at a group of three mons not far from where they stood, watching the fights as well.

Daemon stroked his chin, focusing his attention on the young trio of a dusklops, a zoroark, and a fraxure; all excited and talking about the battles as they watched. “It feels so long ago. I know it’s practically two decades, but still.”

Trishula looked at the trio as well and asked his fellow observer, “Are we in yours or mine?”

“Mine of course,” Daemon answered, folding his hands behind his back. “I wouldn’t be so ill-mannered to request having a soul link with you and not being the mind to supply it.”

Trishula gave a little grunt, with a slight smirk. “Typical of you.”

“You almost sound offended,” Daemon said, his eye indicating a friendly jest but with a point behind the joke.

Trishula gave a nod. “Indeed. Daemon, I suppose you can gather why I try to be strong.”

“I presume from Azazel’s teachings or just Azazel’s watching eyes in general.” The ghost began stroking his chin once more as Trishula looked up at the many stars.

“Yes and no.” Trishula’s eyes narrowed and Daemon listened intently. “For a long time, I’ve wanted to do something with my life that had a meaning and gave me a true purpose. That’s why I left in the first place. Why I joined the red eyes, you know.” The dragon looked Daemon’s way. “I didn’t choose Azazel as my master. For some reason he chose me. Said he saw something ‘raw’.”

“You mean, he saw something to use.” Daemon’s eye narrowed slightly. “That is after all his teachings, correct? Growing you into what he would deem as a purposeful use for the ‘raw’ he saw.”

Trishula gave a slow nod. “I’m surprised he let me still interact with you both back then, even if it was rarely. I’d expect him to be concerned about me telling you or Plageues what he would do to me and all. But…” Trishula sat down, letting his legs dangle and tail curl. “There were moments.”

“Moments?” Daemon asked, sitting his ghostly body down as well.

“Yes.” Trishula looked at the match going on as Daemon kept his gaze firmly on Trishula. “There was something about him seeing potential in me…that made me pleased. If someone as horrible as him saw something in me that could carry something out, that’s something, right?”

“That’s a rather simple way to look at it.” Daemon turned his one eye to the match. “After all, this is the second of the three pillars we are talking about. He, Pathos, and Mephiles created this entire organization. He isn't one to be treated or thought of as simple.”

“I know, and just being around him has taught me that as well.” Trishula’s muscle relaxed. “It’s why those moments, where he would emphasize the role he felt I could play. The goals I could reach seemed…” Trishula moved his claw forwards and looked at it. He whispered as if mustering a little vigor while he closed his claw, “It made me for once feel more than just being Vorice, but like I truly was more than that fraxure that ran away. And isn’t that what being a red eyes is all about?” Trishula looked at Daemon, almost as if he was really asking the question for real. “Becoming more than you were.”

“Perhaps…” Daemon let out a sigh as his left arm went over his right shoulder and clenched it a little.

Trishula took notice and after a few seconds of thought, put his left claw on it, surprising Daemon. “It’s strange.” Daemon looked at him and listened as he said in a rather reminiscing tone, “how someone so dark and cruel can have such a way with words…such a perspective.”

“Perspective?” Daemon repeated, asking if Trishula could elaborate.

“Well…something he said to me once.” Trishula closed his eyes for a second as if imagining the scene once more. He stayed like this for a few minutes in their link before finally opening them and looking straight and saying, “I think…we’ve caught up enough.” The dragon stood up, taking his claw away before it had even been on there for three seconds. “We have to go to Brielle after all.”

“Uh…right.” Daemon nodded slowly, flustered but also a little depressed at them ending so quickly.

The soul of Trishula faded out of the link, leaving Daemon all alone. The ghost didn’t leave immediately, just stared off at the rehashing of the battles and matches the three of them used to see back then. His eye lowered and his head turned to look at the group of three friends. His sight went on Trishula’s Averion crest and from there trailed up to his smiling face, sitting happy in the middle of the two. Daemon just watched for some time, the feelings seemed almost resurfacing, like he was back in the body of a dusklops, just watching some tourney with his two best friends.

After a while, he got back up and let himself fade out of the soul link, but not before a little sigh escaped him.

< O >

The rain poured down upon the streets in Frantal. Some emura lights couldn’t seem to aid passerby’s much due to the amount of lines of rain that filled the space around them. The cloudy sky kept the town from the light of the moon and a little spring breeze blew to make the rain more angular.

Amid all this, Swift walked around. The hood off of his little fain cloak since as he looked around, trying to find Seliph. “Seliph,” he would call again and again for some time, but to his dismay each time no answer would reply. After some time searching, he decided to go on a hunch and head to the library. It’s possible I guess, he reasoned in his mind, After all, he was doing research there. Maybe he has more to do or look up.

The heliolisk started a jog on the wet dirt streets for about ten minutes before he finally found the library. Its old stone structure withstood the rain rather well as its silhouette in what little light the city had at this time, made it much more imposing than earlier when it was lighter. Swift carefully made his way to the first window and peeked in. No lights were on.

Hmm…just in case. Swift backed away from the building and shielded his eyes with his hand to try and spy a route up. Finally, Swift found a part of the building that looked scalable. He gave himself a self-assuring nod and got to climbing. Scaling ten feet of wet rock wasn’t easy, but it helped that the building had a lot of openings and crevices as exterior design. Once Swift had safely made it to the balcony on the third floor he quietly looked for any opening. Called it. He muttered in his head at the sight of one of the angular windows slightly nudged open. Carefully, he lifted the window up and stepped inside and shut it behind him without making too much noise.

He found himself on some scaffolding on the top area of building’s roof from the second and first floor. Walking along the beams, Swift tried to see if he could spy Seliph or whoever had made their entrance dripping rain water as he searched.

It wasn’t long though before he heard a noise nearby. Quickly and Quietly, Swift darted to one of the vertical beams and froze. His heart beat sped a little and his eyes narrowed. Maybe…is that Seliph? Swift closed his eyes. Hmm…I hear…shuffling. Swift remained very, very still and even more alert. The shuffling was slow, like sneaking or perhaps long legs. A few breaths were being exhaled too.

It sounds…like someone walking…I should take a look. Slowly, he moved his head to the edge and twisted his face to just get a glimpse of the area without revealing himself too much. No one there, he muttered in his mind, maybe the other si- He stopped. His eyes shot open as he tensed extremely still. Slowly his head turned and eyes looked at the Night Slash knife aiming for his throat.

“Spying on me again?” Seliph whispered, his eyes showing his annoyance. Seliph let the dagger dissolve as Swift gave a sigh of relief.

“Actually,” Swift corrected, but in a way to not sound snarky. “I wanted to talk to you.”

“Haven’t we already done enough of that? I don’t need any more lecturing from you nor Garon.” Seliph was about to walk away before Swift blurted out “Wait.” Leading to Seliph to raise a “hush” finger to his mouth.

“Sorry,” Swift whispered, but quickly followed with, “Seliph, I’m not here to argue. I wanted to apologize. What I said was uncalled for. I was being unfair, okay.”

“Hmph,” Seliph grunted, “Think pretty apologies are going to make me just forget the ‘desperation’ you happened to point out?”

Swift shook his head. “No, of course not. I’m really worried about you Seliph.”

“I didn’t ask for your worry, just your help.” Seliph coldly crossed his arms.

Swift cupped his arms behind his head and tilted his body over. “Well, then why did you call us over?” Swift inquired with a grin.

Seliph gave him an unamused look and rolled his eyes. “I told you both already and even just now. You’re really annoying; you know that?”

“Heh, Garon makes sure to remind me,” Swift replied with an eye closed grin and cheery smile. This positive nature left as Swift opened his eyes and looked down. With a little hefty sigh, Swift undid his relaxing pose and got to the point. “Look Seliph, I am really sorry.” The rueful heliolisk walked over as Seliph sat down on the beam.

Seliph just stayed silent, taking out his vial and eyeing it. “I don’t know why you both think I can’t handle it when I’ve done so for eight years.”

“I suppose it’s more of what happened and all rather than what we know you can do.” Swift sat down next to Seliph and looked at the vial along with him. “That is a rather…Is it supposed to feel…uhm, weird looking at it?”

“Yes, the feeling it makes you have is…odd to say the least.” Seliph cupped the vial in his hands before looking up, “It’s like part of me wonders what is in there. What thing is in there? I know it’s more than just some liquid or biological makeup, but then what else could it be or have to make it so enticing and yet scary to the eye?” Seliph stood up and crossed his arms. “I’ve done many tests and well nothing so far, like you said. It’s … frustrating.”

Swift stood up too and said while he squeezed some of the water from his drenched rain cloak, causing the water to splatter on splatter on the beam. “So, what are you doing here anyways?”

Seliph gave him an annoyed look for a second, but finally let out a sigh and explained. “I wanted to follow up on the Aegis research. Double checking, you know. I believe Vragon is Aegis…or rather his vessel.”

“So.” Swift looked to the beam he was once at, looking away from Seliph in the process. “I take it you did some kind of test or comparison?”

“Yes, and well…his gift more than likely is Savoire.”

Swift turned around and once again got into his ‘arms behind head and slightly tilted to the side’ pose and gave Seliph a curious look. “Savoire is Aegis’s gift right?”

“Yes,” Seliph nodded, “I did some follow up research here just to make sure there was no contradiction or other comparison to be made. Savoire acts as a synergy transfer gift like many others, but the special thing about it is that it isn’t as limited as the others. In fact it can do many things; I suppose it’s just a matter of discovering it.”

“Well, if he is Aegis’s vessel then, I guess that means he has a bigger target on his back. Meaning, we’ll have to be extra wary to keep him safe.” Swift’s head looked down as his eyes went a little sad. “Seliph, I don’t like-”

“I know…” Seliph’s right fist tightened around the vial. “It’s unfair. The fact he is a vessel and what that entails is so…ugh. I can’t imagine how it would feel being possessed like that. I had a traumatic experience with mental invasion once, though it wasn’t a complete takeover but more some bi**h wanting information. It was…during the attack that my parents died in.” Seliph’s head lowered as his eyes grew a little more depressed and calm as he reflected upon that night.

Swift noticed this and took the opportunity to walk closer and sit down, letting his legs dangle off the beam. “If you want…we can talk about it. Move on from what we were discussing before things got so…hectic and heated.” Swift moved his arms back to prop up leaning his back as he looked at Seliph and said with a newly raised brow, “What’s so important about this thing you couldn’t tell us?”

Seliph gave him a ‘really’ look and said, “If I wasn’t going to tell you then why would I tell you now?”

“Fair point.” Swift looked down over the dark library as he swung his legs a little. “We don’t have to talk about that if you don’t want to. But…” Swift paused as he looked at one of the large front windows tanking the rain from outside.” It’d be nice to catch up on things. Hear some stuff from you, even if it’s not for too long. Maybe even some nice stories you could tell.”

“Why are you trying so hard to warm your way into my life?” Seliph gave him a serious look.

Swift was sort of surprised at how quickly things escalated so he paused for a bit. Finally, a sigh escaped his mouth as he rest his arms on his legs and looked back down again. His eyes were narrow and somewhere distant. “It’s because I care about you and the others. I want to be close to the kids of my friends. It’d…be like making up to them for my lackings.”

Seliph raised a brow at that last sentence, not sure what Swift was referencing. Slowly, Seliph sat down and also dangled his legs. “Swift, uhm…I can’t exactly tell you what is so ‘important’ since well…it’s important and the less you know the bett-”

Swift interrupted with, “I knew about your vial before you even showed it to me and Garon.” Swift gave him a look that was asking to be taken seriously.

“It’s not the vial,” Seliph clarified, “That secret is rather counterintuitive to keep from you and Garon.” Swift raised a brow as Seliph looked straight in front of them at the wall above the large library door. “Swift, I was given something important and well…I can’t tell you what it is.” Seliph felt strange, like he couldn’t just let it end there. Feelings of connection seemed to bring themselves in and he mumbled, “But I can say that it is indeed related to the liquid in here.”

“So it’s information?” Swift asked, raising a brow.

“Yes, but not told to me. Something I found out myself, I guess. This red eyes liquid…” Seliph let out a sigh as he tensed up. “I thought, I heard it say something.”

Swift’s eyes widened. “Heard it say something?”

“It felt like that.” Seliph’s eyes narrowed, almost in a way that felt foreign to Swift. It was like Seliph’s mind was all tracked upon some dark thought that was trying to etch its way out. “It felt like it knew me. Was speaking to me intentionally.”

“Knew you? Wait, are you saying it’s alive?” Swift scooted closer, his curiosity and concern building as Seliph continued on with his explanation.

“Well, I don’t know if it’s alive. But.” Seliph paused. What am I doing? Seliph thought in his head, as he started to get a little nervous. Why the heck am I- Seliph stopped as Swift made a little coughing noise to get his attention.

“Seliph,” Swift said, looking straight out into the library below. “I know what it is like to not want to trust someone. To feel like you have to do something to be worthy or whatever….But I am sorry I overstepped my bounds; it was misguided care.” His eyes shut as he continued. “But…I want to help you. I want you to know you aren’t alone, that I’m here for you. You’ve been through a lot, you’ve seen a lot and it’s time I treat you like you have. You aren’t a kid like when I last saw you; you’re a grown ass adult, so it’s time I treat you like that. Seliph, I’m sorry, can you please let me make it up to you?” Swift looked up at Seliph, trying his best to have the most sincere gaze ever as Seliph stared back.

“I…uh…” Seliph looked to the side and then to the vial. “I understand your concern. It’s not that I don’t understand where you are coming from; it’s just…I…can’t be wrong about this.” Swift remained Silent as Seliph’s voice started raising and his eyes narrowing. “I can’t be wrong about it, okay!” He ranted, “Do you understand how it would feel?” He stood up, and looked down at Swift with angry eyes. “How it would feel to know you were wrong and that you made a journey for eight years making you, your brothers, and your parent’s friends all suffer and grow detached for it? Do you have any idea what a weight like that feels like‽ Do you know if you could handle the pressure of that being a looming plausibility over you‽”

Swift listened with mature understanding. He stood up and looked at the desperate greninja. “I don’t know Seliph,” he honestly admitted. He moved his hand to rub the back of his head and looked back at the library windows at the front again. “I just know how it is to grow up weaker than the others.”

Seliph grew silent and listened to Swift calmly bearing his thoughts and feelings.

“To only really be looked up to by one person, working hard to join a team that would treat me and Garon well, and wanting to be strong and brave like them.” Swift looked at Seliph with a sympathetic look. “You’ve been lonely for a long time, like I was before I met garon. We have that…in common. I grew to trust Garon when I needed it and I want you to trust me, because I think you need it too. I know it’s risky, but deep down…somewhere inside you, Seliph, I know you remember me and that I’d never try to hurt you or go against you not out of concern or worry. I wasn’t there for your parents, but I want to be there for you and your brothers. I don’t care how long I have to say it, just so long as you’ll understand that it’s true and sincere.”

For a few seconds, they both just stared straight at each other. Seliph’s eyes started to water up as his scowl became less convincing with ever sniffle that escaped. His eyes struggled to look at the older heliolisk as his fists and legs felt like they wanted to throb like crazy.

Finally, his legs gave way as his knees hit the plank they resided on. The greninja sniffled and wiping his eyes with his arms. “I’ve lost everything, Swift.” He said amongst the whimpers and tear wiping. “I have to stop them. I have to for parents. My mother, her words are all I have now and I need to stop those bastards that killed my father. This vial…” He leaned onto all fours as his tears changed from rolling down his face to dropping onto the hard surface of the wood. “I can’t be wrong…I’ve lost too much to let them win.”

Swift’s own tears started to form a little at seeing Seliph’s true sad state. He looked to the side as his fists tightened. He wiped his tears away and leaned in, putting his arms on Seliph’s shoulders. “Seliph,” he said, as Seliph’s blue eyes met his own blue eyes. “I’m so sorry we were too late to help.”

Seliph’s sniffles broke as he hugged Swift, crying a little. “Uncle Swift,” Seliph mumbled amid his sniffles, causing Swift to tear up a lot at the old title given to him by a little froakie boy.

Swift broke form and joined with Seliph in their weeping but tender embrace. Letting out the pains of eight years passing from the buildup caused by one regret.

< O >

Ciecro sat at the back door of the inn, watching the rain drip down all over. The only thing making him feel worse than it raining when he wanted to go for a walk was being struck with post-lashing out guilt. It wasn’t warranted and he knew that, but he just wanted to be alone during after hearing what happened. Still, despite how the group probably wouldn’t blame him, he didn’t feel the same way about it.

I should apologize, but…ahgh, damnit, Ciecro ranted in his head. He stood up and looked out at the rain falling a few feet from him. Memories started to appear in his mind, memories with Miss Dresha, who’s now gone. His fists tightened and he snarled, “What do dey wan’ from us?”

The frustrations crept up on him as he let out an angry sigh. His eyes shut as his eyes closed and his nerves went still. As if frozen in time, Ciecro just sat in front of the rain, motionless. Not even the noise of the rain seemed to even bother him, even if a small little strange somehow found its way to his charmeleon scales. But I can’t right now. I jus’…don’ tink I can witout… He let out a small growl as continued to just listen to the rain around him.

His trance was cut off as someone sat next to him. He turned his head to look. “…Jaz.”

The absol walked over to his side, looking at him with worry, concern, and sadness. “Are you holding up okay?”

Ciecro just stayed silent, his eyes narrowing as if her presence was making him annoyed.

Jasmine sat down next to him and started with, “Ciecro, I’m sorry tha-”

“Please…lemme be alone.” Ciecro gave a sincere look to accompany his words.

She let out a sigh as she looked at the rain. “I know you want to be alone right now. But Ciecro,” she turned her head to look at him. “What benefit will you get by being alone at this time? I know it hurts right now, but I’m here and so are the others. I just want to help you through this.”

Ciecro looked down, not responding or gesturing anything. It was like he had forgotten she was there and simply remained back in his old position. After a few minutes of stone cold silence, Jasmine got the message.

“I’ll be waiting when you need us.” She got up and walked back inside, leaving Ci,ecro alone with his thoughts.

With a heavy face, she headed back to her room. I want to help him but, argh, I don’t know what to do! Last time I pressed it, it went horribly wrong, but just waiting for him to come to me is just…ugh, so nerve wracking. She shoved the door to hers and Dolly’s room and sat down, depressed with worry. What if he does something stupid? What if he needs me now and just doesn’t know it? She curled a little onto the floor, lying down on her side. I mean, I know Dolly wouldn’t let me be alone when I was very sad. No matter how many times I felt guilty for leaving or missing my sisters, she’d remind me that I’m cared for here and that while she wouldn’t stop me from going back, she’d advice against it right now. Jasmine then rolled onto her back, looking up at the ceiling. I just don’t want him to do something to himself or others. Ciecro isn’t bad, but when something like this happens. Argh! I just feel so powerless right now and I hate it! She growled up at the ceiling and just let herself go limp. Having vented the frustration in her head, she was slowly starting to calm down, till her quiet space was interrupted.

“Jasmine?” a voice said, coming from her door. Startled, Jasmine opened her eyes to see Vragon at the open door, staring at her in a rather perplexed manner. “Oh, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to startle you or interrupted whatever you were, uhm…doing on the floor,” he apologized, trying not to flare red from thinking he came in at a bad time. He awkwardly rubbed the back of his head and looked at the door frame, a subtle attempt to avoid looking at her longer.

“Oh, it’s fine.” Jasmine casually said rolling back onto her legs as Vragon let out a sigh of relief.

“Oh thank arceus,” he whispered to himself.

“Did you need something?” Jasmine asked, sitting down looking at him.

“Not really, just wanted to talk since well…” Vragon started to awkwardly rub the back on his head again. “Ciecro wants to be alone and Dolly is with Jaron right now.”

“Oh?” Jasmine gave a nod. Taking the time to look at Vragon, she couldn’t help but notice he seemed rather down too, guilty maybe. She lied down on her stomach and asked, “Something bothering you?”

Vragon gave a sigh, “Yeah.”

“Wanna, talk about it?” The absol gave welcoming look as the embarrassed and guilty fraxure rubbed the back of his head, a frown on his face. “I mean, I’m worried about them too. And well, kind of found out the hard way Ciecro wanted to be alone.”

“Oh…sure. The hard way,” Vragon replied, a little bit bothered to think if Ciecro yelled at Jasmine too. He entered the room and sat cross-legged on the floor in front of the lying Jasmine as she said, “How are you holding up?”

“I’ve had time to process it, though it still feels…unreal,” He admitted, looking at the window, “I mean, Miss Dresha has been good to us and just hearing that she’s gone is enough to well…” A sigh escaped his mouth as his head lowered and eyes shut curving into a scowl. “It makes me angry. Makes me frustrated and mad, but also very...” He didn’t finish, leaving an awkward silence for a few seconds before Jasmine spoke again.

“Vray, you think they’re going to be okay?”

Vragon looked up at her and shrugged. “Dunno, maybe since this isn’t the first loved one they’ve lost as much as I hate to say that. Though, it will probably take time. Especially since neither were up for talking about it.”

“Not even Jaron?” Jasmine inquired, her eyes widening a little at this news.

“Yep,” Vragon answered with a sorrowful sigh following. “Didn’t want to talk to me. I’m glad Dolly is talking to him, but yeah…It feels so weird not being the one he is or wants to talk to right now. Guess, it’s fair though. Dolly is probably better equipped right now than me.” The two looked down at the floor, their faces showing just how useless they felt right now.

“I wish there was something we could do for them too.” Jasmine stretched out a little. “It’s not good for them to go through this all alone, and I’m glad Dolly is at least helping one of them. But…I don’t know what to do to help and I wanna help. But I’m worried I’ll just make it worse.”

“I can relate though…” he paused for a second, gathering his words. “I can’t help but feel that…I’m part of all of this.”

“Why do you feel like that?” Jasmine asked, going back to a sitting position. Her sudden focus caused the fraxure to struggle to say it, so Jasmine decided to take a guess to help him out. “Is it because we think it was one of the red eyes after you that did it?”

He pointed at her with his middle fraxure finger and stated, “Yep…you called it.” After he dropped his claw back into his lap, he started twiddling them to help with how uneasy he felt. “I mean, if I wasn’t their target it wouldn’t be going on in the first place.”

Jasmine gave him a “really…” look making him feel even bad. She let out a sigh and thought about a nicer way to put it. After some time of thinking, she finally asked him, “Does Dolly share that sentiment?”

“Well no,” he admitted, stopping his finger play to look at her green eyes.

“Good, then don’t believe whatever is telling you that.”

“But that doesn’t make it right,” Vragon protested.

“How exactly do you make ‘death’ right, Vray?” Jasmine inquired, raising on of her brows in a quizzical way. “Death may be natural, but that doesn’t mean it’s a good thing. And it’s not even like you asked them to come, it was merely you existing. How can you blame yourself for their actions on Dresha?”

“I…I dunno, it just. I mean, I’m part of the cause, correct?”

“And why does that matter let alone justify blaming you?” She stood on all fours and looked at him with assurance as she reasoned with him. “The same could be said for Ciecro and Jaron too. I mean, do you want to blame yourself for the death, because that’s an outlandish idea.” Jasmine eyed him with a determined look making his earlier frustrated shrink down when facing this.

He let out a little sniffle as Jasmine walked over. “Listen Vragon,” she said, softly brushing his head with her front right paw, “Now is a sensitive time for us all. But blaming yourself for the part you have in it isn’t going to make Jaron nor Ciecro feel better. The most we can do,” she paused for a second, as if trying to say it to herself as well, “is to wait for them to let us back in. Like Dolly would always say to me. ‘The worse you can do, is rush someone when they need to slow down.’ So let’s not rush them, but instead be there when they need us, okay?” She gave him a big smile as he sniffled, wiping his eyes a little.

“Okay,” Vragon said, putting on a weak but agreeing smile. He got to his feet feeling better. Suddenly, a strange grin crossed his face.

“What?” Jasmine asked.

“You know, you sounded a lot like Dolly there,” Vragon pointed out.

“Well duh.” Jasmine gave a little flip of her head and an egotistical grin, “I’m around her a lot. Of course I’d rub off of her good traits.”

“So you’re saying that her humor isn’t a good trait?” Vragon stated with a mischievous grin and brow raised.

“I mean, we are talking about the same Dolly, right?” Jasmine answered, not sure what Vragon was up to. “Her puns make me want to hit my head on something.”

“Well,” Vragon crossed his arms and leaned in a little. “Ciecro, likes them.”

“And?” She said, a little skeptical at what he was trying to hint at.

“Well, I’m just saying.” Vragon slowly started backing up to the door. “Maybe, he’ll appreciate you more, if you develop a sense of humor.”

“Excuse me?” Jasmine demanded, facing him. “What do you mean, ‘develop a sense of humor’? I can make good jokes.”

“Yeah…no.” Vragon darted down the hallway as Jasmine pursued demanding he take that back before she catches him.

As Vragon tried to avoid getting caught by Jasmine he couldn’t help but chuckle a little in his head. At least she’s not focused on Ciecro and I’m taking a break from Jaron. They both aren’t just kids anymore so I need to be patient and stuff. This looks like a good way to distract myself, I hope….Since I came up with this on the fly. Now to just avoid her killing me.

< O >

“This is beyond boring,” Rosa grumbled, looking up at the ceiling from her lying on a stone row, levitating rocks into orbits around a bigger one with her mental powers. “How long do they expect us to wait? I mean, did they think it’d take a psychic and someone with freaking vines a while to get everything set in order?” she ranted to herself aloud.

“Normally, I’d probably tell you not to worry your pretty little head over it, but even I’m getting impatient too,” Del admitted, sitting up to look at Rosa. “Want to do somethi-”


“Oh come on, am I that detestable to you?” Del protested.

“Where do I start?” Rosa said, closing her eyes and letting the rocks tall onto the floor on both sides of her.

Del gave an annoyed sigh. “You know, Rosa, you aren’t very fun. I bet Daemon is more fun than you.”

“Please,” Rosa replied, not looking or even so much as move her head. “Daemon is about as fun as Plageues is charming.”

“So, then why do you hang out with him anyways, if you clearly don’t like him?” Del asked, leaning back a little.

“I don’t hate him if that’s what you are asking.” Rosa opened her eyes and looked at the ceiling. “He’s just…very specific and focused. It can get old.”

“Ah yes, he is a male of work and all.” Del laid back down and the two looked up at the ceiling. “So…what do you think of him?”

Rosa rolled her eyes as she rolled onto her side, trying to indicate she wasn’t interested in talking about Daemon.

Of course, this just made Del even more curious. “Oh, so it’s more than just teacher then, right.”

“He didn’t teach me Delilah,” Rosa grumbled rolling to her other side. She was about to continue but stopped abruptly. Her eyes looked to the left as she rested on her side, showing slight discomfort from almost going into it.

“Oh? So what is he to you then?” Del inquired sitting up once again to look at the now unsure Rosa.

“…It’s none of your business.” Rosa’s eyes returned to their stern self and she rolled to her other side.

Del looked up, pondering on what Rosa was hiding. She gave herself a little devious chuckle. Maybe I should ask the Ghost when he gets here. Might rile her up.

Del’s thoughts were interrupted however as a third voice called out to them. “Slacking are we?” Del and Rosa sat up to look at the newcomer.

It was a lurantis with light tan lines for color and whose pincers were slightly smaller than average but very sharp and durable. She looked at the two in a rather disapproving manner as she stopped about seven feet away and continued what she had started upon entering. “Or do you both just enjoy doing the bare minimum?”

“Excuse me‽” Rosa spat, getting off her temporary stone bed, “What do you mean by this, ‘bare minimum’ crap? We set this all up here you twat.”

“Oh yes,” the lurantis insincerely agreed, “Well, then you must not want to get picked for setting these things up again, because aligning some rows is what anyone would define as ‘bare minimum’ for an Iris meeting.”

“Tck, and what would you know about it, Ipsiato?” Rosa scoffed.

“More than you, apparently,” Ispaito calmly countered. Placing a pincer on her hip and giving a rather condescending look, Ipsiato added, “or do you have a different explanation on why I’m on the center iris rank and you’re still mid-tier?”

“Hmph,” Rosa grumbled crossing her arms. “Simple, you’ve been here longer.”

“And that helps your case about me not knowing anything about it, because?” Ispiato gave a calm scowl to Rosa’s clearly aggressive one.

As these two locked their stares like blades, Del got off her spot and walked over. “So, Ipsiato, why are you here so early?”

“Isn’t it obvious?” Ipsiato responded, turning her displeased frown now to Del. “I’m here to ensure things are set up accordingly. What kind of leader would I be if I didn’t make sure things were going smoothly?”

“Oh please dear, don’t have me answer that.” Del gave a little giggle at her subtle little shot that made Ipsiato sneer at her.

“Anyways,” the annoyed lurantis said, walking past them to look at the set up. “This could use some work. So let’s start with-” Ipsiato stopped at the sound of Rosa giving an annoyed moan. She spun around and said in an impatient tone, “Oh please, you’re a psychic; you have about as much excuse to be lazy as Corviac has reason to teach anyone.”

“Hmph, well why don’t you do it yourself if you’re sooooooo much classier,” Rosa sassed.

“You’re supposed to be an adult, Rosa,” Ipsiato rebuked.

Rosa faced the grass type, took a deep breath, and snarkily said, “And I am one. It’s just I don’t take kindly to miss ‘I know everything’ coming in and lecturing me for no reason than to bolster her ego. What is it, your lifeline?”

“What‽” Ipsiato shouted as the two began hashing it out verbally, back and forth.

Del just watched, very amused at the fight going on. However, suddenly a voice came from behind her.

“Does Lesath have you to thank for setting them off?”

Del turned around to see a wobbuffet no more than two inches away from her; his face just facing hers and quite closely. She gave a little soft chuckle and took two steps back. “No, that’s just them letting out the bi**h in them.”

He gave her a rather skeptical look, despite his eyes being shut. “Lesath think you are the lying.”

“I mean,” Del defended, “How long have you been observing?”

The wobbuffet gave a little wobble and replied with a monotone high voice, “Since Lesath got here three minutes after Ipsiato did.”

This answer amazed Del. “Wait really? You’ve been here that long? How come I didn’t notice you?”

Lesath didn’t change face, just merely stated. “Lesath very good at not drawing attention to Lesath. Helps when fight of bi**hes goes on and Lesath make little noise when moving.”

“Right,” Del answered, drawing out the word. As she was still processing this, Lesath spoke up once more.

“So did plant lady cause this?”

“No,” Del replied, getting a little annoyed at not being called by name. “‘Plant Lady’ didn’t cause this.”

Lesath paused as he just kept his face locked onto her form, remaining still and starting to make Del feel a little uneasy. “Lesath detect mockery,” He said slowly, “Does plant lady know what Lesath think of mockers?” Before Del could reply, Lesath leaned forwards a little and answered, “Inner iris council member, Lesath, think mockers should be limbless or in plant lady’s case…headless.”

Del froze at this as Lesath moved back to his original posture. They both stood there in awkward silence, the only sound being Ipsiato and Rosa’s argument getting louder by each passing minute. “They’re arguing starting to bug Lesath,” Lesath stated, twitching a little in annoyance.

“Correct.” Del looked up to see, who said this. Her eyes fell upon a rampardos entering. His body looked a little cut and some spikes nicked or broken, but still in good shape and fortitude. His face had the normal red eyes like them all, but a few cracks were around his right eye that went up a little to the start of the blue round head spike that rampardos have. “I took the liberty to have a look around before entering in here.”

“Why?” Del asked, “I mean, no one is going to attack let alone think there’s some kind of-”

“I’m the cautionary type.” He gave her a little stern look as he headed left to look around.

More like the paranoid type. Del muttered in her head.

“That not nice thing to think say,” Lesath suddenly stated.

Del looked at Lesath confused at first, till she figured he had read her mind. “You know,” she said, turning to him, displeased. “It’s awfully rude to read a lady’s thoughts without permission.”

“Lesath read everyone he can, in case Lesath is required to terminate them.”

The response sent a surge of unease throughout Del. She decided to leave the plain-faced wobbuffet alone and instead head over to Skrelle, who was busy looking at the walls. “So uhm…” Del started, trying to stay a conversation, “Skrelle.”

Without a word, he turned to face her and gave a respectful nod, something Del wasn’t quite expecting and was a little flattered by it.

“Oh, well uhm…” Del looked down at the stone rows as a sigh escaped her mouth. “Do you know what will be on the agenda?”

“I shouldn’t discuss the topics before it starts, however.” Skrelle looked at the wall, causing Del to once again return her attention to him. “I can say that today’s meeting will be focused on reassuring the members.”

“Hmm…What about updates? Like the Amestria project?” As she asked, Skrelle’s eyes narrowed in a way that seemed almost bothered. “Oh, sorry…I’ll wait.” Did I say something wrong?

“Yes you did,” Lesath commented as he waddled over. “You said something that bothered Skrelle.”

Del and Skrelle gave aggravated moans. “Lesath,” Skrelle said, turning to face him, speaking in a tone trying not to lecture him as much as just calmly correcting. “I appreciate the concern and informing me, but you don’t need to keep tabs on her.”

“But Lesath heard question. Lesath answer question that was relevant to her and you.” Lesath looked up to him, his eyes still closed. “Did plant lady annoy you, Skrelle? Should I punish plant lad-”

“No, Lesath, she didn’t do anything wrong.”

Lesath looked at Del and muttered. “But plant lady said you were paranoid, therefore she on Lesath’s suspect list.”

“Suspect list?” Del repeated, confused and slight bit concerned.

“Yes,” Lesath stated, “list of mons Lesath will watch and remove should they prove threateni-”

“Lesath, stop!” Skrelle harshly commanded, and Lesath snapped his focus to Skrelle. “A simple phrase that is critiquing me isn’t enough to warrant her name on a hit list.”

“Wait, hit list‽” Del exclaimed, looking at Skrelle for answers.

Skrelle gave a sigh. “He has it in his mind that anyone that openly shows some kind of disapproval of me or other members of the inner Iris is enough to deem them suspicious. Pay it no mind.”

Del gave a reluctant nod as she looked back at Lesath. Lesath moved his arm’s end to his forehead and said, “Lesath won’t punish if Skrelle request Lesath not to. Be nice to Skrelle, else Lesath will burn you to ashes and eat them.”

Del froze, Skrelle facewalled, and Lesath gave a little smile. “Skrelle,” he said, looking up to rampardos, “those two bi**hes are still fighting. Beginning to annoy Lesath.”

“Ugh, I’ll handle it,” Skrelle stated with annoyance. So they keep their tongues at least.

Skrelle started walking over to the arguing girls with Lesath waddling behind him. “But their tongues are root cause for noisiness.”

“I don’t care Lesath,” Skrelle grumbled, “we can’t just take everyone’s tongues that annoy us.”

“Why not?” Lesath genuinely asked.

What the actual fu**? She said in her head, these are our inner council members? To think, I finally go to a meeting and find out one of our heads if a psychopath that reads min-…oh dear. Del froze as she looked at Lesath, whose face was directed at hers, despite eyes being shut. Del just stood still as Lesath mouthed something that made her shudder, then waddled after Skrelle.

“I think it says a lot about you if you’re getting riled up at being asked to do a job correctly,” Ipsiato shouted.

Rosa gave a huff and hair flip. “How about you take your sorry ass and fix this place up to meet your stupidly high bar standards instead of demanding it from me. I did do the job fine; you just want it to fit your polished standards because you’re an overachiever that annoys everyone around you.”

Ipsiato lashed out, “How about you stop acting like a little girl!”

“How about you take initiative to adjust the room to suit your sensitivity yourself instead of asking me to do extra for the sake of your dumb-”

“How about you broads stop arguing over a simple room layout for a meeting.” Skrelle gave an angry stare at them both and in a low tone added. “It is petty and stupid to argue over something like this. Ipsiato you need not be set off so easily considering your rank and Rosa you should honor the words of your superior even if it sounds silly.”

The two crossed their arms and turned their heads away with huffs. The both gave annoyed stares at the walls they were now looking at while Skrelle gave a sigh as Lesath waddled up.

“Broads are rude. Lesath punish rude mons.” The two rolled their eyes at Lesath’s words. “…Lesath serious.” He started flailing his arms around. “Lesath enact punishment fo-”

“Lesath…guard duty…now.” Skrelle gave him a stern look and the wobbuffet faced Skrelle. He gave an obedient nod and waddled his way back to the stairs.

“Lesath tear off Ipsiato’s pincers and Rosa’s body dress later,” he muttered loud enough for the four to hear as he left the room, leaving Rosa and Ipsiato to sneer at him when he left.

“Moron,” Rosa grumbled.

“Dull-witted,” Ispiato muttered.

“Enough,” Skrelle ordered, facing the two. “Enough bickering. This is an important meeting, as you know full well, Ipsiato.” He focused his scowl at Ipsiato, whose angry face slowly started to go ashamed.

The lurantis’s head fell slightly as she uttered a sigh. “Yes sir…sorry, Skrelle.”

“It is pardoned,” Skrelle answered with a calmer, friendlier expression. He gave her nod and turned his focus to Rosa. “Rosa,” Rosa looked back at him with a scowl, “All of you go with Lesath and keep watch. I will finish preparing things here.”

Rosa gave a little huff and started heading out with Del, who was already at the stairs but not because she was asked to. More just so Lesath couldn’t sneak behind her, even though she hadn’t taken off her stare on the wobbuffet since he lipped something threatening to her.

Ipsiato was about to go too, but stopped due to a sudden Skrelle’s request.

“Yes?” she asked, looking at the older rampardos.

Skrelle’s eyes lowered and looked to the side. “You know…I feel uneasy about having this meeting.”

“Are you really concerned we’ll be attacked or something?” Ipsiator asked, in a rather concerned tone. “I mean, I understand if you feel uneasy knowing there are potential troublemakers in the members attending bu-”

“It’s not that.” He walked over to the stairs and looked up them. “I…I feel uneasy with our recent moves.”

“You mean Amestria specifically?” she guessed.

“Yes…maybe…I don’t know.” His eyes shut and head fell. “I just hope, I’m not chosen to go there.”

Ipsiato walked over and stood next to him. “Well…I’m sure you won’t be chosen. More than likely, they’ll keep you here in Sorphia and all. I mean, no offense, but you are getting a little old.”

Skrelle gave her a little jesting snort. “Old huh? Well, good to know this sixty-eight year old can still silence a room with a stern call to order.”

They chuckled a little. “I have a feeling we’ll need it.” Ipsiato gave him a warm smile as Skrelle looked back with his own. They stared at each other’s red eyes for a little with mutual respect till Ispiato, finally, started heading over to the stairs, leaving Skrelle to just watch her ascend the stairs out of sigh.

Old huh, Skrelle though as he turned around, looking at the area ahead and assessing how to approach it. He cracked his neck on both sides as he gave a determined smirk. Well…I still can do a lot. I’m not ready to stop now. Better than just sitting around trying to do something I can’t.


Ipsiato - [Ip - see - ah - toe]

Lesath - [Leh - sath]

Skrelle - [Skrehl]

“A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.”
– Unknown


Darkinium Z

Dani California
Seen 2 Hours Ago
Posted 2 Hours Ago
5,588 posts
13 Years
Interesting memory/soul link between Daemon and Trishula there. Seems like Trishula is questioning his role in the organization and such.

Finally Swift and Seliph get a heartfelt conversation of what's been going on. Glad Seliph finally clears up his bottled up emotions. Him calling Swift Uncle there is sweet.

Last scene looks like a few new characters have been introduced. I'm guessing they're other members of the red eye council? Got a bit crowded and was trying to keep track who is who (Lesath is easier though due to his speaking style haha).

A couple grammar/style stuff before I go. I've been noticing you're going passive voice again. For instance, "gave a nod", "let out a sigh", etc. In those instances active voice would make the narration read and flow better (he nodded, she sighed, etc).

“Uh…right.” Daemon nodded slowly, flustered but also a little depression at them ending so quickly.
"A little depressed" you mean?

Foul Play
[Chapter Nine up!]


Age 23
Seen 16 Hours Ago
Posted 18 Hours Ago
19,645 posts
7.1 Years
Reviewing Chapter Four.

Ah yes, there's the attack we've been anticipating for the past three chapters. It's quite a good effect to slowly build the anticipation for three chapters and then on the fourth to suddenly ratchet it up several notches. I'm glad you didn't break the tension yet though and have instead elected to keep it at high alert for a while.

The action itself is quite good also. It was nice to see a display of just how formidable Freya and Gathor are. You keep the sequences short and concise, which you should with fight scenes, it helps translate the speed and urgency to the reader. That being said, you don't need to totally abandon description when you make the switch to the shorter, sharper phrasing used for combat. It would add a lot to the visualisation of the scene if you added a little more description to the actions being undertaken. Remember, adjectives are your friend.

You did some more nice character work in this chapter too. It was good that Freya, Gathor and Tetheron's personalities didn't mysteriously vanish during combat like can sometimes happen. I also appreciate the reminder that Seliph is still a kid, after setting up how much more mature he is than his younger siblings, but also the hinting at his strength as he was able to largely resist Rosa. These factors will certainly become very important as the story continues, because Seliph is more or less your central protagonist at this stage.

But, back to your villains. You did a nice job of setting up their personalities and it was a nice choice to see a Gardevoir presented a a villain for a change. In particular, I'd like to commend the bait and switch you pull with them though. Throughout the chapter, you very much played up on Rosa's power and generally made her seem more like the one "in-charge". But as things progressed, the real dynamic with Plageues became more pronounced and I think by the end it wouldn't be wrong to assume he is actually the greater threat.

Only other thing I want to mention, is that you should remember to start a new paragraph when a new character speaks.

Venia Silente

Inspectious. Good for napping.

on the second floor's nest
Seen 4 Hours Ago
Posted 6 Days Ago
791 posts
10.6 Years

First I'm gonna say that as per my checking of the thread I'll be fixing the Pomabork for chapters 12 to 16 tonight and tomorrow as I post this.

As for reading, I took that pending shot at chapters 6-10 for this review. And I'll start by saying Seliph is cute and shouldn't deserve this mukty life of having his dad ded in front of him. That kind of thing changes a mon. Sending hugs and don't do that again.

Arriving to Miss Dresha and the letter was the latest I got to when reading the old version so I guess I can start from there which *technically* means Ch. 7 oh well.

Now, I get to finally meet adolescent!Ciecro which is so... expected. Like your typical wannabe cool and rad human teenager except with a tail on fire and they either don't know how to read or don't care about danger signs. A bit of YOLO it seems.

It is a bit disheartening to see the family in the now dysfunctional state of what remains, given Ciecro's general behaviour. That part where Ciecro doesn't really think anything of Seliph and Jaron is like "bad brother", leaves one hoping things get better soon.

Hmmm we also get to meet Vragon and:

“You liar!” Vragon slithered, “You could have easily just said 'hello' or possibly 'beg your pardon' instead of being goofy.”
Uuuh he *was* doing that like five times while climbing the ladder you know, lol. He has this personality that I like. Shame he's not a Totodile line member.

Anyway we have some worldbuilding. There's pendants, a world map that honestly I would like to see an artistic rendition of, mentions of Legendaries having offspring which is nice except that offspring can not be an Axew so off Vragon goes I guess! You can't win every day.

(That said, how would offspring between a Reshiram and Zekrom even work? They're supposed to be two halves of the same being or something, dunno how are you going with that piece of lore in this setting)

I'm quite interested in the mapping. We get a sense that the world is big and regions are apart, but we are not told how they are positioned compared to each other really and barring the mention of distance nothing feels like it describes the Journey Vragon might be seeking to would be difficult. I don't know if that changes later but, it's a thing that is notorious as a hole that is left too abstract because of being in a written medium.

So Vragon (does that name sound familiar) is an Axew line specimen who... seems to have the ISO Standard PMD MC backstory? Appearing at random somewhere, suffering amnesia, being related to a particular trinket. Except in this case interestingly enough when they do try to make sense out of things, I quote, "Just when a piece comes into play ten more holes pop up". This helps to speak of a complex word without actually pointing to any of the complexity, clever!

(Why don't they hire a Detective Pikachu to find out Vragon's origins? :p )

While I do like Ciecro as a character somewhat, he just feels like he's already built-up with a number of classical flaws, ready to be pried upon such as his reliance on strength and his inability to open up. Also probably his inability to communicate any clear sign of distress or sadness (no, silence doesn't count when you also do it every other day) and I'm betting one of those is going to be his downfall. Compared to that, Jaron seems more expressive which should help him, and he has the advantage of being a lovable Totodile member too. And having at least one (1) friend.

Also, this quote is a bit sad.

"Don' worry, this just happens and all. My folks also made sure to grind into my head to make sure I don't lose what matters tah me. You, Jaz, my brother and ever dweeby Vragon have been good to me.
Notice who didn't get mentioned (besides Miss Dreshha).

Character-wise it's a good thing to show up that Jaron is still learning and willing (somewhat) to learn, unlike Ciecro who seems to have a "already done" attitude. Speaking of Jaron:

"Hey, you're the one wanting to get into electrical circuitry
"Croconaw found fried on an alley, acquaintances say he missed out the Electric > Water memo. Film at eleven."

And I finally get a bit of screentime on Seliph. That's good. He seems to be busy with what he said he was gonna do after all these years so, that's a good thing going for him.

Now, Seliph might want to... delve into chemistry? Hey! It's good to see mons going for STEM, those things are important! I mostly hope he does well, and at least this is something that would give him something to speak about with Ciecro once both of them get their degrees.

Well, this is all for tonight, I'll hopefully be commenting more on things during the weekend, or next weekend. I do want to catch up a bit more (at least up to the parts I am cleaning up lol).

And besides, "someone" promised me there's Nidoran screentime further ahead!
Venia Silente - Consulting Worldbuilder
Background... some day.
Fic stuff~

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Nidoran : Carnivine


Say it with me (Vray-gun)

As if I'd be one to say
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 4 Days Ago
256 posts
1.2 Years
Contains: Language, Violence [14]
Chapter 36

Ciecro stared at the dry, dirt ground, shielded from the rain by the overhead roof. He didn’t know how long he had been sitting here, just thinking or letting his emotions swirl in him, but all he knew was that it felt like ages.

I…argh, I don’ know what tah do. Sitting ‘ere, ain’ doin’ nothin’ but… Ciecro closed his eyes as memories invaded his head. Why her? Voices filled his head as a few tears started to roll. His head drifted back…back to a particular time. He could hear his name being called as a memory popped in his head.

There she was, the old fish staring at him from the memory. Looking at him with a concerned look. She’d always had dat… he thought in his head as the memory played almost automatically.

“Oh Ciecro,” Miss Dresha said in a soft tone at a younger charmeleon sitting on the rock pouting as she inspected his face. A sigh escaped her lips as she looked at him. “What happened?”

Ciecro’s head fell down a little as he recalled and mumbled the exact response younger him made. “I don’ wanna tawlk abou’ it.” Something about saying that now just felt…wrong.

“Well…when do you want to?”

Ciecro looked up as he recalled the curling motion he did in response to this question and only tensed up as she continued.

“Ciecro, please tell me. I care, that’s why I ask. You can trust me.”

Those words imprinted deep into his mind as his right claw started shaking a little. This was all too familiar. Dresha treating his face after a fight…but he knew exactly why he was so tense at the time. What younger him was afraid to say.

“It was dat day…” he mumbled to himself. “When I did dat ting to dat monferno…” He watched the scene again in his head. Every detail, every motion, he had noticed it all. He could feel the tension he had felt then especially the chill that filled his spine as Dresha talked again.

“Ah, I see,” her voice uttered in his mind.

Ciecro remained still though he recalled clearly him pulling back a little bit bothered at what she meant. A little grin crossed his face as he remembered what followed.

“Ciecro,” she looked up to younger him. “Why do you keep getting into fights?”

I didn’ know, den… he thought as his grin widened a little. The little sharpness he remembered the annoyed reply of “I don’ know, okay!” Followed with a growl. He looked straight, remembering what a sissy he was.

His mind then continued down the memory’s path.

“Well…what if you were fighting, Jaron?” Dresha inquired.

Ciecro gave a little chuckle as he thought about how he took this back then. How he snapped his head straight up and looked at her with a shocked face, almost as if he was given a bad surprise. “What did I say?” Ciecro mulled for a second trying to recall. “Oh right…‘I’d neveh hi’ Jaron like dat!’ Heheh…did little good to de old fish. She coul’ see righ’ trough me…” His eyes lowered a little as his grin faded to a more downcast look. “Dough…dat ain’t hard.”

After giving his head a little shake, he resumed remembering the conversation. Her trying to calm him down saying it was okay to talk and to please not get mad, while he was sitting there doing the exact opposite. It was amusing, looking back on it now but at the same time, it left him disheartened.

Ciecro looked at his fist, the same one that had beat up that monferno and not too long ago almost grounded Seliph’s head into the ground. “Tck…” was all he could say when gazing upon that reckless dumb fist, shaking like a newborn babe being held. So full of energy and yet so stupid and aggressive. Nothing like what he wanted it to be…nothing like Gathor.

He sighed as he returned his focus back to the memory. A few tears began to form almost on cue, due to this part of the conversation coming up. He remembered how he started tearing up and trying not to look into her eyes as he tried to finally admit getting into a fight and beating someone’s head in over some dumb name-calling.

That feeling of shame and embarrassment felt all too real for the charmeleon; a simple scare of what one could do that was enough to make him fear it even to this day. As he started wiping away the guilty and ashamed tears, he thought about what came next, about the reason this memory was so special to him.

“There, there, Ciecro it’s okay. You can be brave and tell me,” her voice encouraged in the memory. That moment was a tipping point for little him to do his best in being honest about it.

“‘Be brave’…”

Of course, it wasn’t all fixed and Ciecro knew that. The worriedness still gripped younger him and those came back too. He moved his right claw over his heart as he thought about the doubts he needed answers for. “But…What if yah…What if wha’ I did makes yah stawp carin’ fo’ me, like Seliph? I don’t want you to go or tink less o’ me.”

Ciecro’s grin returned a little as he thought about Dresha’s response. How she didn’t do what he was expecting, but instead adjusted. “Ciecro,” he recalled her saying. “How about I do something for you then.”

“Do what?” the younger him replied, his stupid head being tilted and sniffling like a bullies leftovers. It was enough to make Ciecro smirk at how overly pathetic he must have looked being vulnerable.

“Well, if you’re afraid to tell me, you don’t have to. Instead, let me show you that I don’t change when it comes to caring about someone. So, I’m going to give you something.”

His eyes narrowed at what happened next. Remembering Dresha diving down into the pool of water and coming back a few minutes later with a gift for him. A little stone.

He smiled, standing up and looking over at the rain as if he wasn’t disgusted by it at all. He crossed his arms and repeated the rest of the conversation from memory. “‘Well, that’s a little shock stone I let out excess electricity in.’ den I dropped it all disgusted tinkin’ it was some girl’s thing boy’s shouldn’ touch. She laughed and calmed me down. And den…”

Ciecro moved his right fist in front, extending it straight out to the rain as his left fell to the side. His eyes scowled but his mouth went to a determined smile. “An’ she said… ‘I’m gonna teach yah sometin’”

He grunted as he ignited his fist in a surge of electrical energy. Its yellow chaostic radiance illuminating a little bit of the area outside the emura light’s reach. A few of the sparks coming from it would climb up the rain only to inevitable fall to the ground.

He shut his eyes. He slowed his breathing. “I’m gonna teach yah deh move…Tunderpunch.” Once he finished saying those words, he let his move stop and lowered his fist back to his side. His head was downcast and his eyes were narrow.

She taugh’ me i’…trustin’ me to neveh use i’ recklessly. I can’t eveh do dat.

His eyes closed as he thought about the rest of the memory.

His concerns. “Bu’ wha’ if I hurt someone?”

Her answer. “Ciecro, you’re a young mon and it’s high time we start having you build yourself into a direction. Ciecro, whenever you are angry or feel like you want to hurt, surge all your feelings into a Thunderpunch and punch a rock. See what power you can do and build yourself from there.”

Him asking her how she knew and her just calling herself observant. Challenging him to be responsible and him voicing his worry and lack of trust in it.

Ciecro moved his right fist to one of the wooden beams holding up the little roof. His eyes narrowing as he thought about the last bit before they nuzzled. ‘You’re only a boy Ciecro. You will mess up, but that just means you have more reason to be better. You see Ciecro?’

His eyes shut. Yah knew how to help me…but I couldn’’ help yah. His fist tightened as his eyes shut and squinted firmly. I’m sorry, I really am. A few tears left his shut eyes as he sniffled. Yah gave me a goal an’ a move…an’ I couldn’ keep yah safe. I can’t…eveh let dat happen again. Fo’ yah sake…an’ mine.

< O >

The rain had lightened up a little in the street of Frantal. It was nearing midnight and already most of the town’s emura lights had been dimmed. No one roamed the streets save for Seliph and Swift, who were heading back both in silent. It wasn’t a tense silence but neither really wanted to start conversing.

Swift was rubbing his arm under his rain hood. His head was uncovered due to avidly enjoying getting his head wet while Seliph, on the other hand, had his on as his head was staring at the ground as they walked, both deep in thought. It wasn’t till they were nearing their last turn that Seliph broke the silence.

“Swift,” he said, startling the heliolisk a little. “How did you and Garon become friends?”

Swift fumbled around for a second, trying to get words together. “Isn’t it a little late to be asking personal questions?” he pointed out with a little chuckle.

Seliph stopped, prompting Swift to turn around perplexed and confused. Seliph leaned his back against the nearest building and said, “I have time.”

“H-huh?” Swift drew closer looking at him with curiosity. “Well,” he said, deciding it was alright to start. “It was more when I found out he looked up to me that I really started letting him in and all.”

“Oh?” Seliph asked, crossing his arms.

“Yeah, I mean,” Swift looked at an emura light across from where they were, his eyes lowering as the recounting began. “I grew up in an orphanage in Bohrmia. I think it was a few years before Garon arrived. Heh, I didn’t pay him much mind at first. I mean, it’s not like he was nor would be the only new kid to come and live there.”

Seliph looked at him as if to ask him that same question. Swift’s head rose and he looked straight forward, prompting Seliph to listen extra carefully.

“I suppose it started when one day I found him crying and stuff. I guess…I was feeling sympathetic that day. Gave him some pointers, he was extremely clinging, and soon I took him under my wing. He was a crybaby whenever trouble happened but it felt nice you know.”

“Nice…as in helping someone?” Seliph inquired.

“Not exactly,” Swift gestured his arm out into a few spins. “It’s like, how you help and how they feel towards you afterwards. Gratitude and all you know.” He leaned back on his arms, folded behind his head and chuckled. “I admit, I was a bit selfish and self-centered…I think that’s where he sort of rubbed off onto me and stuff.”

“What’s wrong with enjoying him admiring you?” Seliph asked, looking at the heliolisk.

“I dunno if there was anything wrong, to be honest.” Swift looked up to the sky and slowly said, “I just…I just didn’t like my mindset then. Enjoying more him following me like a baby rather than actually being my equal. I guess…it felt great being superior.” Swift looked down with a little guilty expression on his face.

Seliph got off the wall, but didn’t immediately say anything; he just stood there observing the heliolisk, who looked like he was going on down an unpleasant memory lane. “Well,” Seliph finally interjected, putting his webbed fingers on Swift’s shoulder. “It’s not like you think that way now.”

“Well…even if it isn’t. I just don’t like it. Becoming the very thing I disliked, you know.” Swift crossed his arms. “I didn’t like the older kids, for how they garnered the attention and all. Treating it like some kind of drug or something to get enjoyment instead of being actual leaders of the pack.” Swift bent down to pick up a little stick and tossed it as he said, “And yet there I was, doing the very same thing to Garon. Treating him as someone to use rather than really being friends with him.”

Seliph took a moment to process this. The words sounded a bit too close to home for him. Is he trying to imply something? Seliph asked himself, with slight skepticism. However, he quickly discarded that idea as the heliolisk started on the second half of the story.

“And it’s weird. It wasn’t till I got out of that complex that we finally decided to get better lives. I taught him how to run fast since well, I taught myself and whatnot. Being alone and all that. It was fun being a mentor to him. And how that eventually led to us to run away and get to some town where we were able to get better help. Eventually, we even wound up in Norfair’s academies, as hard as it is to believe.” Swift looked up to Seliph with a newly added smile. “And those academy days were some of the best days of my life. Garon grew so much then, and honestly…” Swift shuffled his feet a little as he looked down with a little bit of embarrassment going over his face. “He’s gotten stronger than me by far.”

“He is a garchomp to be fair,” Seliph pointed out.

“Well yes of course, but…” Swift paused as if trying to think about how to say it. Despite trying to clarify, Swift gave up trying to explain after a few minutes of thinking. “Nah, it’s not important.”

Seliph was a little put off by this. His eyes narrowed as in his head he began figuring on what Swift could have meant. Potential envy? The thought surged in his mind, as he was snapped back into reality by Swift calling out to him.

“Come on, let’s head back.” The heliolisk started walking on, putting his rain hood on his head, another subtle indication their conversation had left something. Seliph gave a little cough as he followed after Swift, a lot on his mind as well.

It didn’t take them long to finally be in sight of the lodge. As they headed that way, Swift spied Ciecro sitting outside in the walk-in shelter, seeming deep in thought as he looked deeply into his right hand. “Huh? Hey Ciecro!” Swift called out with a wave, causing Ciecro to turn his intense gaze to them a little surprised at being called at. “Hey, why are you out here?”

Seliph by this time had joined up with Swift, and they both were looking at Ciecro, who was giving them a melancholy stare back before letting it look back at the ground. “Uh,” Swift began but Seliph stopped him with a hand on the shoulder.

“Dresha, remember,” He whispered.

“Oh…right.” Swift gave a nod and decided to leave Ciecro alone. Seliph, however, didn’t go with him, prompting Swift to ask but Seliph assured him it was fine. Swift reluctantly went on thinking, I hope this doesn’t make things worse, Seliph.

Ciecro didn’t look up as Seliph approached and let out a little announcing cough.

“It’s wet out here after all. Something on your mind?” Ciecro didn’t reply prompting Seliph to try something else. “Ciecro…uhm.” Dang, this is hard, Seliph uttered in his head as he crossed his arms. He then offered his hand to Ciecro and tried to persuade him to come inside. “I know…that the news must be hard. But catching a cold won’t be good for you. So how about we come inside.”

Ciecro looked at the hand reaching out to him while it dripped a little from the rainwater still hitting and running down Seliph’s head and arm. “…I’m fine,” Ciecro grumbled as he let his head sink again.

Seliph wasn’t convinced. He let out a sigh and just stood there, wondering if he should try further. What’s the point? He reasoned in his head. It’s clear he doesn’t like me anymore or holds a grudge at me. I mean, the crack he left where my head was should be proof enough of that. Seliph was about to head in but stopped before he even moved his legs. One by one, words popped into his head.

Be careful, playing with others like that won’t always end well.

See, right there. That’s your problem. You keep wanting to do things yourself when you clearly aren’t capable of doing it yourself. I don’t know why you ‘need’ to do this, but I think it says a lot when you talk about having your brothers go to safety as ‘out of the way’.

Naw, we still should try and be a close family, but you're yahself and so am I. Don' do your own battles wit us in mind. I wanna rely on you when I need yahs and I want you tah do de same. Watch my back and let me watch yahs. Be angry at me. I wan'tya to be honest and I don' wish I was de perfect father, but one you can love while punching his face in.

Seliph’s head fell low. Processing all these words flooding his mind as if they had all been intentionally released at the same time. His fists clenched and his eyes narrowed. A sigh escaped his mouth as he looked at Ciecro. He’s hurting I can see that. Seliph said to himself, But what do I do? What do I say? What can I say? Seliph’s mind then darted to the memory, of his brothers making that necklace for him and for just a brief moment, the down scowling charmeleon in front of him looked like his sad charmeleon brother, crying about something. After taking a big breath, he decided to at least try.

“Ciecro,” he spoke in a serious but calm tone. “You shouldn’t be all alone out here.”

Ciecro’s scowl shot up to look at him. “Why yah sayin’ dat?” Ciecro asked, almost as if threatening Seliph with the question.

“…Well, it’s not good to bottle up feelings like that.” Seliph put a webbed hand on his side and added, “I mean, they’re here to talk to you right?”

“Why do yah care, what I’m feelin’?” Ciecro asked, his tone lowering a little as his head backed away a little.

Seliph raised a brow. Something was off about Ciecro. The death could be the cause, Seliph figured, but then why would Ciecro even talk. Seliph half expected Ciecro to either sock him in the face for that or to just get up and leave. After thinking for a few seconds, Seliph answered with, “Well…just because it’s not exactly my business doesn’t mean that I can’t give you advice.”

The answer seemed to frustrate Ciecro more, his scowl growing a bit as his head lowered. “Seliph,” Ciecro spoke slowly, “Why…do yah care?”

Seliph paused, quite unsure what to say. “Well…I’m not sure. I guess, I just wanted to see if you were okay.”

Ciecro looked over to Seliph and his expression seemed to be less hostile. He felt sick. Looking at the brother that had left him so long ago and hearing him say these things just made Ciecro angry. But, he couldn’t stop his questions now. He needed to see it. See the monster who wrote that note was there. Ciecro stood up, startling Seliph and looked down at him with a fierce scowl. “I wanna straigh’ answer from yahs.”

Seliph looked up at him, a mix of still processing but at least knowing something very important was about to be asked.

Ciecro took a breath and tried to lessen the anger in his face. He looked at Seliph, trying his best to look composed and strong. “Why did yah write dat letteh an’ leave us wit Dresha?”

Seliph paused, just looking at Ciecro’s deep orange irises. He felt overwhelmed by this sudden deep question posed to him. A flurry of questions, anxiety, and worry filled his head. Seliph stood up, shoved his hands into his pockets, and looked out. He started to try and think of what to say, as Ciecro stood next to him, looking at him with a face that was trying to be patient but clearly wasn’t looking forward to the answer either.

What do I say? What can I say? Seliph let out a sigh as he looked at Ciecro. “I…I don’t know…how to say it.”

“Do yah best,” Ciecro bluntly said, his eyes curving into more of a scowl.

Seliph was clearly losing the fight and sadly he had no clue what to do. Seliph’s mind then flashed back to Dolly’s harshness with him, the too Swift and Garon’s constant interrogations of him. He started to make little noises as one would do when they didn’t know what to say when they should be talking.

Ciecro let out a growl as he suddenly seized Seliph’s shoulders. “I want an answeh!” he shouted.

Seliph just froze, dumbfounded and completely shocked at this action. Seliph was too overwhelmed by all that had just happened to utter anything more than just a few stutters.

This didn’t go well for Ciecro. He firmly clenched Seliph’s right shoulder with his left and gave his older brother a hard punch to the face with his right. The hit sent Seliph onto his back in the wet ground from where the rain was falling. “Why can’t yah say something’‽ I wanna, know so f**kin’ tell me! Yah tink I can’t take it‽” Seliph just looked at him, too shocked and confused to reply. Ciecro gave a little snarl as he grumbled, “F**k dis.” With a harsh push, Ciecro opened the door and slammed it behind him, leaving Seliph to process what just happened in the mud.

Ciecro stormed to his and Jaron’s room, fuming in his head. His right claw seized the handle and was about to enter but stopped upon hearing Jaron and Dolly talking inside.

“I just…” his little brother said with a sniffle or two afterwards.

“Hey, it’s okay Jaron,” the voice of Dolly said in there, “I understand. Don’t worry, I’ll make sure you all stay okay.”

Ciecro’s rage and anger slowly calmed as his scowl looked at his hand, firmly gripping the knob. The hand was slightly shaking once more and instantly, Ciecro’s former fury was replaced with an expression of disturbance. He wrenched his hand from the knob as if worried it’d take it and held the wrist firmly with his left. To say he was a nervous wreck would be an understatement.

“Ciecro?” he heard a voice say, and instantly looked in that direction. It was Swift at the end of the hallway, wearing a confused expression on his face. “Ciecro, are you oka-” was all Ciecro heard before leaving the hall and going around the corner. Once he was out of sight, he shoved his back to the wall, panting a nervous pant.

He heard steps of Swift coming and tensed up, but suddenly the sound of creaking filled the room too. The voices of Dolly and Swift started talking. Talking about him. Slowly and with a little bit of trembling, Ciecro tried to scoot his way to the edge to listen, but stopped. A thought crossed his mind. A memory of a look of disappointment. He gave his right fist another look, eyeing it with a face of scared shame and finally let it fall to the side. Stupid… he repeated in his head as he started to walk away from the hallway, only to be stopped by a hand suddenly thrusting itself on his shoulder. He instantly whirled around and prepared to jab only to stop once he spied it was Dolly.

Her face looked concerned, despite her free hand being moved up to intercept the perceived punch. “Ciecro,” she said in a gentle but authoritative tone, “calm down.”

Ciecro shrank back, but Dolly wouldn’t let him. She put her hands on his shoulders to keep him from going off somewhere. That feeling when you were trapped and caught flooded Ciecro’s nerves. He wanted to get away, as shown by his tugging in the arms. “Stawp it,” he loudly pleaded, pulling against the one holding him against his wishes.

Dolly wasn’t having it. She tightened her grip and shook his shoulders frantically as if to snap him out of some stupor. After stopping her shaking, Dolly looked firmly into his orange eyes with her brown ones and said with a soft voice, “I said…calm down.”

Ciecro closed his eyes and finally obeyed. Taking a deep breath, he tried to quell his tension as seen by his trembling decreasing. Once he felt calm and collected enough, he opened his eyes again but kept them looking down. They slowly moved over to look at his right fist, being flooded with shameful memories of what it would do.

“Ciecro,” Dolly said, pulling him into a big hug with her arms, “I know you don’t want to. But, please tell me what happened.”

Ciecro stayed silent.

“If you need it, we won’t attend the planning meeting. But, you need to tell me what’s wrong.” She moved him in front of her and looked at him with a little assuring grin. “You’re brave Ciecro and you know you don’t have to fear me. Don’t replace me in your head with someone else.”

His eyes started to tear up as his right hand started to shake again. Dolly moved her left hand to take the scared right hand and cupping on the top with her right. Ciecro let out a sigh. “I…I wanna do de meetin’. Fihst.”

“After the meeting, can we talk about this?” She leaned in closer and her eyes gave him a look that was asking him to hold himself to that.

Ciecro gave a nod. “Fo’ yah Dolly…sure.” He gave a little grin as he tried to display confidence. A pleased sigh happened in his head as he succeeded in making Dolly smile.

“Good boy,” she said with a cheery tone, hugging Ciecro once more. “Let me know if you need me before then.”

“…Tank yah fo’ bein’ so nice tah me.” It was weird, for once her long hug didn’t grow old. He closed his eyes as an old feeling slowly filled his mind. There was something about this once hug. This one assurance that eased his soul that felt like…his mother. He couldn’t help but shed a few tears since, despite his body reliving this feeling, his mind hadn’t forgotten.

Dolly shut the boards on the window of Swift and Garon’s room and did the bolt. Slowly, she turned around and let out a cough to bring the group, encircled around the room, to attention. “Alright,” she started, carrying an assuring tone, despite the heaviness woven in it. “So we’re going to need to talk about our plan of action from here. Since…” Dolly paused, taking a moment to adjust herself the heavy subject matter and allow the rest to compose themselves for it as well. “Miss Dresha has passed, we’re going to need to figure out what to do now.”

“Hmm…” Garon stood up and waited for Dolly’s permission to speak. “From what I can gather, most likely they were trying to get intel on Vragon there. So more than likely, Vray can’t stay here without being in danger.”

Vragon scowled at hearing this. He was about to stand up and protest this till Seliph spoke up first.

“I’m afraid it could be worse than just that.” Everyone’s attention diverted to Seliph. “I’m worried that they could know of my connection to Ciecro and Jaron too. If that’s true, then you two would become fair targets as well.”

Jaron’s scowl looked to the side as Ciecro just kept his stare at the roof, albeit less scowling than his younger brother.

“It’d be safer for them not to stay as well,” Seliph concluded, sitting back down and crossing his legs.

“Do you have proof they do know that?” Jaron challenged, looking at Seliph with a firm stare.

Seliph gave a calm one in return and merely stated, “Are you saying you want to take the risk?”

“It’s not like that!” Jaron shouted, “You’re telling us to leave our hom-”

“Calm down, Jaron,” Dolly commanded.

“What, so we just leave you all? Me, Ciecro, and Vragon?” Jaron’s angry eyes glared at Dolly, full of tension. However, they eventually backed down as Dolly kept firm a fierce resistance to his scowl and he sat back down.

“No one wants any of you to leave,” Dolly said, crossing her arms, “But given the circumstances, staying in an area where they can track you isn’t a good idea. This doesn’t mean we won’t interact anymore, Jaron, but given what’s been going on and what Seliph has supplied, we need to at least be cautious.” Jaron sulked in angry depression as Vragon patted his shoulder to try and encourage him. “Anyways, Swift and Garon may have a solution.”

Garon cleared his throat as he told the rest about Abdule.

Ciecro and Jaron both seemed to be against the idea, but didn’t speak up.

Vragon and Jasmine kept silent as well with their worried expressions.

Dolly then looked around and said, “Okay, so if anyone has another suggestion, please voice it now. If not, then the plan is to get you four passage to Norfair.”

Vragon felt better knowing he’d be going with Jaron, but couldn’t help but feel bad whenever he looked at Jasmine’s clearly depressed face. This was all messed up. The fraxure looked up to Dolly and asked, “What about you and Jasmine?”

Dolly looked to the side, her eyes showing she’d rather not answer. “We’ll…well, we can’t just move.” She faced Vragon and gave him a smile, “Don’t worry hun…we’ll see you all again. This is just so you can be safe. And besides.” She leaned her back on the wall next to the window. “It’s not like you all being in Norfair will hinder us seeing you.”

“Yeah…” Jaron started, his eyes reflecting his gloom. “But that’s far from here.”

“I know,” Dolly admitted, “but that won’t stop us from seeing you all.”

This statement didn’t seem to make Jaron nor Vragon feel any better. It was then, Jasmine got to her feet and looked at the two. “It’s hard. But think of it like this.” Jasmine let out a sigh as she thought carefully. All eyes were placed on her as she looked at the two and said, “Jaron, you have a grandfather in Norfair. Someone that can help you be strong and Vragon will have a lot more flexibility to find more about his past. I know it’s hard…but try to be strong. For Dolly and me.”

Despite the warming nature from her words, Jaron couldn’t help but feel it was masking a lot of sadness then. He felt like he needed to give her a strong nod. Despite how much he hated this idea, he couldn’t deny the validity of it. Plus, Vragon would have to leave anyways, so staying with him would be better than having him alone.

On that input, Dolly looked around the room for any more thoughts. Since none were ushered, Dolly gave a sigh and stated, “Get some food and rest everyone. Tomorrow, we head for Plainier Town.” She gave one more of her big smiles as she dismissed everyone. Everyone left, save for Ciecro who was stilling chilling in his seat, arms crossed, and head looking at the ceiling.

“You okay?” Dolly asked walking over.

The charmeleon let out some air from his nostrils, dropped his gaze to the wall level, and mumbled, “Jaron…”

Dolly pulled a chair over and sat next to Ciecro. “I know you’re worried about him, but things are going to be alright.” Ciecro just stayed quiet, while Dolly patted his shoulder. “You should get some rest too, Ciecro.”

Ciecro looked at her and tried to say something, but couldn’t figure what to say and just stood up. He gave a nod and started to leave.

“Later then?” Dolly asked as Ciecro stopped.

He turned around and with a grin said. “Yeh, lateh.”

< O >

The rain was starting to lighten, having used up almost all of its resources. Only a fraction fell now upon the dark streets of Frantal. However, it was enough for Armád, who was on one of the roofs. It was barren of emura lights and covered in water due to the rain. The excess was drawing down a built in hole in the building’s side while the two feet tall perimeter barriers prevented the water from seeping down to areas it wasn’t supposed to. Armad stood on one of these roof edges.

His eyes were busy staring at an inn near the building he stood on. “I see,” he muttered to himself. “So Plageues was right.” He started walking from the ledge, pressing an orb in his hand to cut off communications. “Thankfully, it wasn’t hard to track a large group like them and bug each of their rooms. Good to know they’ve got new friends now; I bet Plageues would be glad to know about that.”

Armád got out a communication orb and began fiddling with it till it started to make a connection. After a few minutes of static Armád was greeted by an annoying, “Hello, Army.” Armád’s eyelids lowered halfway as he fetched for his coin. I’m going to need this. He started flipping it as he replied with. “Hello…Plageues.”

“Ah, I see you finally called back,” the flamboyant voice replied from the orb. “So, did you find them?”

Armád took a deep breath and answered, “Yes…and they are headed to Plainier Town for their first stop.” He cringed at the giggling that came afterwards. Ugh, this moron, Armád growled in his head, starting to flip his coin faster. He gave an attention grabbing cough and stated, “Anyways, I believe there is something you should know about that group.”


“So apparently, there’s more of them now.” Assessing Plageues wasn’t grasping this info due to the following silence, Armád clarified. “That group has two additional mons aiding them. From the information I gathered, they know Seliph and are aware that he has the vial.”

“Good grief, Armád, remind to call on you for reconnaissance more often.” A chuckle from Plageues resounded from the orb. “So, change of plans. Armád, I’m going to head to Plainier town and intercept them on the way there. Sadly, I’ll need you to do something.” Armád rolled his eyes as he stopped flipping and Plageues continued, “If you can head to Crion and wait for the transport. I doubt the kid will come with us without kicking and screaming.”

Armád gave a little groan. “So you’re asking me to stall meeting Gaispir again because you need someone to sit on a dock and wait for your boat to come?”

Plageues gave a little chuckle. “I know what you’re think-”

“No you don’t!” Armád lashed out. “What the actual reverse do you mean ‘duh wait for my boat for me dya dya dya’? Like what do you want me to do next, make sure you have a meal ready when you get back‽ You can take your constant neediness and shove it up your ass!”

“Look, we don’t have any cruisers on route so I need you to set one up for me. I’d do it myself right now but considering they’re leaving tomorrow I have to hustle.” A sigh came from the com as Plageues playfully pleaded, “Oh Armád, can’t you find it in your heart to do a mon a favor?”

Armád snarled as he tightened his grip on his coin. “Plageues, I swear to Arceus if you need me to pick up for your lacking in prep one more God damn time-!”

“Look,” Plageues stated, interrupting him for a second. “If you do this, you’ll be doing me a huge favor. You want to hurry on to Gaispir, right? If you assist me in this, I’ll get Daemon to prolong you and your buddy’s time off.”

Armád paused for a bit, thinking it over. While the extra time was enticing, he couldn’t shake the feeling Plageues was going to f**k it over somehow. “…I’ll do it on one additional condition.” He cleared his throat and put his coin away. “I want to be taken off of observing assignments in Triacal.”

Plageues was silent, as if he could see how serious Armád’s face was. A little pondering noise came from the zoroark over the com. “You know, it’d be a lot easier on you if you didn’t blam-”

“Do you f**king accept or not‽” Armád shouted into the com.

“Okay, okay, I accept. I’ll be in Crion once I nab the kid. Have a nice night.” The com switched off as Armád let his arms fall to the sides.

He spat at the ground and grumbled, “What do you know about anything? You’re just some dumb sadistic zoroark.” He started walking to the area where he could climb down and looked as if someone was talking to him. He scowled and he tensed up, reaching for his coin to start flipping. Suddenly, stopping as if something caught his attention, Armád lowered his gaze to the ground with a guilty expression. A sigh escaped his mouth as he put his coin away and resumed his path to climb down.

“A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.”
– Unknown


Darkinium Z

Dani California
Seen 2 Hours Ago
Posted 2 Hours Ago
5,588 posts
13 Years
Grammar wise, one thing I noticed quite a bit is you often use the phrase "x a little" very often. For instance, here:

(etc). “And those academy days were some of the best days of my life. Garon grew so much then, and honestly…” Swift shuffled his feet a little as he looked down with a little bit of embarrassment going over his face. “He’s gotten stronger than me by far.”
Here you used "a little" and "a little bit" twice. You don't even need to use that pharse half a time. "Shuffled his feet" and "Looked down with embarrassment" sounds more natural.

Why do yah care, what I’m feelin’?” Ciecro asked, his tone lowering a little as his head backed away a little.
Here too. You can take out both of the "a little" phrases.

Armád gave a little groan. “So you’re asking me to stall meeting Gaispir again because you need someone to sit on a dock and wait for your boat to come?”

Plageues gave a little chuckle. “I know what you’re think-”
You also have the "little x" in both cases here and passive voice again. I would just put "Armad groaned" and "Plageues chuckled" there.

I admit, I was a bit confused which Ciecro feelings are right during the flashback with Dresha or him reminiscing. Kinda hard for me to imagine a fish teaching Thunderpunch though for obvious reasons, lol.

Ouch over Ciecro punching Seliph. That'll probably have repercussions later.

Looks like the next destination is Plainier Town and the group stumbling upon Plageues. I don't blame Armad being frustrated with Plageues one bit. =P

Foul Play
[Chapter Nine up!]


Say it with me (Vray-gun)

As if I'd be one to say
Seen 3 Hours Ago
Posted 4 Days Ago
256 posts
1.2 Years
Contains: Language, Violence [13]
Chapter 37

Del sat nervously on a branch in the tree near the ruins, occasionally glancing at Lesath, who was standing in a circle with the other two members. As she watched, she felt something right next to her. Del jumped in startle but calmed down at seeing it was just Rosa. “Don’t startle me like that,” Del scolded, but Rosa just brushed it off with a hair flip.

Rosa eyed the trio, deep in thought. Her thoughts were interrupted by Del’s prodding. “What‽” Rosa demanded.

“Heh, just checking to see if you were awake,” Del joked, her earlier concerned look replaced by her normal demeanor. Rosa rolled her eyes as Del returned looking at the three. “So, these are our inner iris council members?”

“Yep…bunch of weirdos,” Rosa answered, prompting Del to give her a look.

“I mean, have you looked in a mi-”

“I know what you’re going to say, so don’t,” Rosa firmly said, leading to a chuckle from Del.

“Hmm…” Del started, looking up at the tree as Rosa closed her eyes to meditate. “I wonder exactly what this meeting will entail.”

“Why don’t you just ask?” Rosa said, in a tone like lecturing a child for saying the obvious.

“You think I didn’t already do that?” Del replied, a little annoyed at Rosa’s prickly statement.

“I’ve given up thinking on what you do,” Rosa stated. “The simple fact is we’ll get the information in the meeting so just wait till then.”

The two sat in quiet solitude for a little bit of time, before Del spoke up again. “Hey, so did you hear any interesting news?”

“Nope,” Rosa bluntly said.

Figures, Del said in her head. I doubt you’d really care to hear news about others after all.

“That accurate statement,” a voice agreed to her left.

Slowly, Del turned her head to see Lesath standing next to her looking at Skrelle and Ispiato’s conversation as Del was doing prior. “Gah!” Del jumped back into Rosa, almost knocking her off the branch.

“What the reverse, Del‽” Rosa demanded, but got her answer once seeing Lesath. “Oh…you.”

“Yes…it Lesath,” he replied in his normal monotone voice. “You both looked bored so Lesath came over to check.”

“Check?” Del repeated, slowly and warily, getting back her bearings. “So, you didn’t come here to hurt me?”

Lesath slowly and rather mechanically twisted his head to face them. “If that what Lesath wanted, neither lady would be breathing.”

Del gulped and Rosa dusted her shoulder unintimidated. “Anyways,” the gardevior grumbled once she had finished brushing her shoulder. “Any reason you came over besides to scare Del?”

“Yes…Plant Lady ask if there was any interesting news. Lesath have interesting news.” The two tilted their heads as Lesath once more looked at his two peers talking, his eyes shut as always. “Lesath, duty to Iris Council often helps Lesath hear interesting information not quickly accessible to Rosa and Del. Example, mon recently defected from the Red Eyes.”

“Someone defecting?” Rosa replied. “I haven’t hear of this.”

“It recent,” Lesath answered. “Certain defector stole one of the red crystals and is currently being hunted down.”

Rosa looked at Lesath, raising a brow. “The defector stole a red crystal? How?” She faced the wobbuffet as she followed with, “Aren’t they only given to higher ranking Iris Members or certain apprentices?”

Lesath’s face pointed at her as he answered, “Lesath not sure since Lesath wasn’t informed fully on it, and not placed on assignment for capture or kill. Lesath understands that defector was in enforcer’s division so possible defector killed holder of a red crystal.”

“Enforcers, huh…” Rosa gave a little grumble as she looked back to the talking duo. “Have they put anyone on it?”

“Not sure, maybe secretly assigned other enforcers operatives to deal with him,” Lesath replied, bobbing his head a little as wobbuffet’s tend to do when idle.

“Enforcers?” Del repeated, out of the loop about what the two meant by the word.

“Branch of red eyes. Enforcer division of the red eyes is the most aggressive of them all.” Lesath kept his closed-eyed gazed firmly on the two as he answered, “They will be deployed for missions and matters that require attacking.”

“So?” Del started, sitting down on the branch, causing a little crackling sound inside it. “Are they our military?”

“Not really,” Rosa answered, her eyes narrowing to a bored look rather than a scowl. “It’s more of mission support, espionage, recon, stuff like that. At least, considered that due to their current numbers.” Rosa then looked up to the sky, deep in thought.

Lesath’s head turned to Rosa and stayed focused on her for a few minutes, making Del feel left out of whatever the two were doing. As Del was about to say something, Lesath spoke.

“Ah, so that why you know Daemon.”

Rosa stiffened, as if she was suddenly turned to stone. She slowly moved her head to look at Lesath with a fierce scowl. “What…did…you…say?” she said in a low, dark, threatening tone as her arms went to her sides, shaking slightly from the tension building in them.

Del’s eyes shot wide open, while Lesath remained unbothered. He kept his bobbing as he answered with a tone slightly more jesting than his normal monotone voice, “Lesath said, ‘Ah so that why you know, Daemon.’ Wasn’t Rosa listening?”

Del quickly got down from the branch and dropped to the ground, taking the sudden surge of solid pink color over Rosa’s eyes as a hint Lesath just crossed the line.

“I don’t enjoy the approach Lord Azazel is taking in Amestria,” Skrelle grumbled with a troubled scowl on his face. “What do you suppose he has planned for that area of the world, Ipsia?”

She shrugged. “Not entirely sure, but frankly I like the idea of having less enemies. I mean, even if Sorphia tolerates us it’s clear they aren’t for us or willing to work with us. To them, we’re just help add to their base as a rival power to the five clans.” Skrelle made a little grunt as she turned her attention to the ruins behind them, observing their pale, cracked stone surface, illuminated in the moonlight like a dark colored picture in a normal lit room. “What do you suppose these ruins are from?”

“Well,” Skrelle began, turning to face them as well. “I’m no expert, but they could be from very far back. Possibly during the time of Aegis’s invasion.”

“So…over a million years old.” Ipsiato turned her gaze to the ground as her mind tried to imagine what it was like back then or what these ruins where like. “I suppose it’s possible,” she admitted despite not being too convinced that one measly structure like this one could survive that long alone, let alone be a remnant from historical invasion.

“It is,” Skrelle bluntly answered, this time with much more assurance. Ipsiato broke her gazing to look at him as he explained, “Look at the design, notice how there’s no exterior decorations or additions on the walls or ceiling that would protrude from it very much. Everything is built as if it was meant to be a large box. That is a style that’s far different from modern day Sorphia. It looks rather similar to Valendorine architecture.”

“True,” she agreed, looking back at the ruined piece from the past. “But even then, how do you know it was way back from that war? Couldn’t it have been from Callium’s war?”

Skrelle closed his eyes and let out a breath. “I believe before that time Mextrein gained influence from the original clans during the time they were under the clan’s rule. As a result, more decorative architecture culture in Mextrein shifted to what it was till we came to what we were today.” He shifted his stance to face her. “Remember, Callium won Mextrein’s liberty around three hundred thousand years ago. That’s far less of a time span than over a million, Ipsia.”

“Fair point,” Ipsiato admitted with a pleased tone. She took a few paces forwards, turning to face the older red eye, a question still on her mind. “But even so, I wonder why out of all the structures that could have around, it survived all these years.”

Skrelle shrugged with his short rampardos arms. “I don’t know. Perhaps it was spared for reasons like history, sentimentality, regrets.”

That last word stuck with Ipsiato. She tilted her head as Skrelle looked back at the ruins.

“It’s something we may never know.” The rampardos took a few paces back from Ipsia, keeping his gaze firmly on the ruins. “What does such a conflict gain us in the end? They all still have damage that remains for longer than we want. Makes me wonder why it was waged in the first place.”

Ipsiato’s eyes lowered. She pulled her pincers close, a bit uncomfortable at Skrelle’s personal reminiscing. “Skrelle,” she started but was interrupted by the sound of something smashing into a boulder about twenty yards behind them. The two spun around, Ispiato surprised and Skrelle ready to fight. Their eyes feel upon Lesath, picking himself off the ground while rubbing his head.

“That hurt,” he stated, facing his attacker, that being a pissed off Rosa levitating from the branch they were on and softly landing about ten yards from him.

“I hope it did you punching bag!” she spat with anger, forming a Shadow Ball and throwing it straight at the clueless wobbuffet.

Lesath sprang forwards and rolled on his side to avoid it, promptly picking himself back up to his normal position in just a few seconds.

“Rosa! What the reverse are you doing‽” Skrelle roared.

“That brute read my mind!” she roared back, angrily looking back at Lesath.

“For all the-,” Skrelle started, pausing to just let out a frustrated roar. “Rosa, stand down now!” He commanded, starting to march over there.

Rosa gritted her teeth with a mix of wanting to defy but at the same time knowing what that would lead to. Slowly, she let her arms drop; her furious gaze turning towards the ground in frustrated compliance.

“No Skrelle,” Lesath interjected, causing both his guardian and attacker to look at him. “Lesath accept challenge from Rosa.” Del and Ipsiato’s jaws dropped, Skrelle tilted his head, and Rosa growled at his obliviousness all while Lesath did his basic bobbing back and forth. “Lesath sense tension in Rosa. Rosa want to hurt Lesath so Lesath accept challenge.”

Skrelle gave a groan as he shook his head for a second. He slammed his right foot on the ground once as he attempted to stop things from starting up again. “That’s not what a challenge is,” he pointed out. “She never asked to battle you, she just blasted you into that boulder there.” He pointed to the currently cracked rock for emphasis.

Lesath stopped his bobbing at a tilt of his head. “Really?” he replied confused. “But Lesath read words saying, ‘I’m going to beat up that sniveling little-’”

“Stop reading my mind!” Rosa demanded taking a few steps forwards. She formed a Shadow Ball between her two hands positioned at her side as she harshly questioned, “How are you even doing that‽ I don’t feel your presence inside so how are you in there‽”

Lesath just kept bobbing back and forth slowly, his tail flopping on the ground in rhythm to his bobbing like a living metronome.

“Rosa!” Skrelle stepped in between the two. “Enough of this!” His fierce gaze met Rosa’s defiant one. The two leering at each other with such immovable wills with neither showing any sign of backing down.

“Skrelle please,” Lesath requested from behind. He put on his best persuasive face despite Skrelle not even looking at him and kept repeating the request over and over. It didn’t take long for Skrelle to get annoyed by the ordeal enough to step out of the way. Rosa and Lesath looked at him as he stopped and about faced in between Ipsiato and Del. “Three minutes…that’s all.”

All the time I need, Rosa said in her head, ready to make this little sponge of a hack pay.

She took a deep breath as she formed a shadow balls, one for each hand. “Eat it!” she shouted, tossing the two at the emotionless wobbuffet.

Lesath stiffened as if activating some combative instinct. His closed eyes moved in time with the balls as he was keeping track of them. When they were about to impact he quickly bent over to avoid one and then with a firm push from his arm that was closest to the ground, generated enough momentum to avoid the second. He rooted his balance as he smacked his arms together and was looked like light blue circles encapsulated him for a moment.

Safeguard, Rosa guessed in her head. She paid it not mind, considering she had no moves that could inflict status anyways. “I hope this hurts you, asshole!” she threatened as she covered her body in a wavy light. It danced around her form like an aurora before she unleashed them as many light beams, all in Lesath’s general direction.

Lesath didn’t seem particularly concerned as they surged straight into the area he was, ripping up parts of the ground around him and uprooting dirt to obscure the results of the destructive force, because when the dust settled there was Lesath standing, coated in some odd white color that swerved all around his form.

Ipsiato’s eyes widened. “Is he usi-”

“Mirror Coat,” Skrelle finished for her, eyeing Lesath carefully. Oddly enough, the wobbuffet didn’t seem in a hurry to shoot it back at Rosa, making Skrelle skeptical the mon was even trying hard. Endurance test or one hit end? They have about a minute and a half so perhaps he’s hoping to stack, he theorized as Rosa pummeled another Dazzling Gleam upon Lesath once more. Again, the wobbuffet converted into Mirror Coat and again refused to fire it.

“Isn’t he going to defend himself?” Del asked, walking over to the observing two.

“Probably not,” Ipsiato stated. “If he felt he was in any danger he would have used it by now. He seems to be just stacking it. Probably waiting till it’s near the end to finish the fi-”

“That’s not his plan.” The two looked at Skrelle with perplexed faces.

“But, he’s stored all that power. He could probably do enough damage to win or gain a pretty big advantage.”

“Maybe, but then ask yourself.” Skrelle turned his eyes to them and in a low tone said, “What test would that give him?”

“What do you mean?” Del inquired.

“Lesath seeks to better himself. Become very strong to carry out whatever is needed.” Skrelle’s eyes narrowed as his focus locked onto the tanking Lesath. “Pushing himself to the extreme. Being reckless in tolerance.”

“So…” Del paused for a second before asking. “Are you saying he’s just doing this to test himself?”

“I would,” Skrelle bluntly admitted. “An angry opponent offers a lot of damage coming your way. If he isn’t careful, she will take advantage of that. Then again, Lesath treating this as some kind of training exercise would probably make her want to hurt him even more.”

The three looked back at the battle, Rosa still pelting Lesath with Dazzling Gleam after Dazzling Gleam, only for it to be added to the Mirror Coat.

Rosa snarled as this mockery. If he was going to have the audacity to read her mind he could at least not just sit there taking everything she fires wearing that stupid face. An idea popped in her head. Forming two shadow balls she gave him a look and said, “I hope you are ready.”

Lesath just remained in his bobbing self as she threw them at him. Once again, he tanked them and added it to the Mirror Coat build but suddenly a floating rock hit him on the back of the head. Lesath fell forwards from Rosa’s sneaky use of a telekinetic lifting and he flopped onto the ground. He wasn’t there for long, because his surprise caused him to accidentally release Mirror Coat causing a large explosion and sending Lesath hurling high into the air.

“Lesath!” Skrelle shouted with concern as everyone just watched him reach the peak of his climb to the night sky before heading straight down. Skrelle quickly charged forwards to catch but he was too late.

Lesath smacked back onto the surface with a loud thud.

“Lesath!” Skrelle hurried to check on Lesath’s condition.

The left arm was bend in the wrong direction though the noises coming from the mouth (currently pressed against the ground) as well the flailing of the right arm indicated he was at least alive.

Skrelle took a sigh of relief but didn’t remain relaxed for long. He stood up and looked at Rosa. “It’s over.”

She gave him a glare as she held another Shadow Ball in her hand. Her arm didn’t seem to want to back down.

Skrelle gave a little snort as he took a firm step in her direction and with a low growl stated, “I order you to go cool off before you do something you will regret. Am…I…clear?”

After a few second stare off, Rosa let her Shadow Ball disintegrate as she spun around and headed back to the forest, without a single reply.

Skrelle faced Lesath again, who was picking himself up. “Are you alright?”

Lesath held his arm as he stood up and gave a nod. “Lesath is fine, just underestimate dress lady’s power.” He started rolling his broken arm, trying to prove it was fine. However, this method of confirmation only showed how broken his arm was, with it flailing around like a child swinging a pond reed.

Skrelle had to back away from Lesath’s flailing around, saying, “Lesath, please stop. That’s not something I want to look at.” The wobbuffet complied and Skrelle worked on clearing the image out of his head. “Anyways, Ipsiato, please treat him. I would but-” He gestured his small arms for emphasis.

With a reluctant sigh, Ipsiato came over to start as Skrelle offered support. Del, however, headed off to the forest where Rosa was. It didn’t take her long to spot some of Rosa’s gardevoir black dress coming from behind a tree.

She started over to the spot when she was met by Rosa saying, “Don’t.”

Del paused, rubbing her head a bit unsure what to do. “You sure? I mean, you look like you have something to say-”

“Not to you or anyone over there.” Her voice was firm yet odd. As if it was requesting space instead of defiantly demanding it.

“Oh, well take care then.” Del began to leave but stopped as she saw Skrelle heading this way. “She’s not in the mood to talk,” Del informed as Skrelle walked past her.

“I’ll keep that in mind.” He gave her a little glance, his eyes telling that he had something to do. “Go see to the others.”

Del nodded and walked off as Skrelle walked over near the tree where Rosa was at. Once there, his gaze shifted off to the darkness in the woods as his breathing slowed, just taking in the night noises and his steady breathing.

“Why is he with you?” The gardevoir turned so she could see Skrelle from behind the tree, looking at him with a rather bothered scowl.

“…Well, Lesath is a special case,” Skrelle admitted, facing her but not venturing nearer unless given permission. “He’s rather loyal to me since I took the time to help bring him back to health. He wasn’t exactly enduring wynaut compared to now.”

Rosa looked to the side, unsympathetic. Clearly it didn’t excuse his blatant intrusion on her personal space let alone a memory but she could help but be slightly curious about it. “Well…you shouldn’t let him just go about the way he does. Reading others’ minds like he has the right to.”

“Yes, I agree.” His tone indicated a sincere apology.

This didn’t make Rosa budge. Her arms tightened in her frustration as her angry gaze remained firmly on the dirt nearby in front. “Well, why don’t you do something? He’s a member of the inner iris council and yet you’re just letting him act this way?” She accused.

Skrelle let out a sigh as he explained. “Rosa…do you know how the inner Iris council are chosen?”

She set aside her frustrations to give him an answer. “Yes…they’re chosen by the red eyes Lords.”

Skrelle gave a nod as he turned and leaned his back on the tree. “I had no handle in them choosing him. In fact, I was against it.”

Rosa’s head turned a little, curious.

“I don’t think he’s ready for such a position. After all, he’s not that old and yet he’s already been put in such a high role and standing. He has incredible focus but that has its ups and downs. I theorize he was chosen for the very reason of monitoring.”

Rosa paused to ponder. This concept of them choosing such a stupid mon to be on the council just so he could spy just made her more fed up. She put her thoughts on pause as he continued.

“Of course, that’s just my guess. I don’t know what their motives are in doing this just that they went with decision. And while he does it very well, I can’t say it’s good for him. He’s…well a bit weird if you haven’t guessed.”

There was just silence from the two for a second till Rosa felt the urge to find out more. “Why weird? Is he sick or something?”

“Not so much sick as needing to adjust.” Skrelle’s eyes looked to the side as he said amid a low growl. “There are some things the red eyes do I find damnable. Lesath is a constant reminder of that. Enforcers training I consider one of them.”

Rosa remained silent, her eyes widening at hearing that. Her mouth opened and was about to ask something, but froze. The defensive walls of hers went up once more and she curled back to the tree. “Well next time, tell that sick punk to take me off his reading list.”

“I will…My apologies for him stepped over your boundaries.” He waited for an answer, which came in the form of an annoyed grunt. After giving a nod, Skrelle left her to her peace and headed back to check on the others.

Rosa sat there in the fetal position. Curling her legs closer the more her thoughts drifted. The fierce angry eyes slowly lowered to the kind that would be on a little girl remembering a sad event. Her nerves tensed as she remembered words and phrases. Lift it higher. Let’s see about now. If you wish to become one of us you need to excel further. Come on, hold it. You can do it. It was hard to believe that she had lived a life like that once. It’s alright…we’ll work on progress next time.

A growl escaped from her as she rolled to her side, thinking. First about the council, then about the red eyes leaders. Despite her initial harshness, it was rather calming to know she wasn’t the only one that felt the red eyes had flaws in them. A sigh left her mouth from a face that looked more longing as she recalled the situation. She looked over to some trees, the image of a corner popped, and image of a younger blue-eyed kirlia sniffling in a little test outfit, while a large shadow slowly crept up. The startled girl flinched back as the intruder offered a hand to her.

The stranger said, “I can offer you a different life. A different role. You need only ask.”

The kirlia paused, looking at the dusknoir hand coming out of a brown cloak that covered the stranger’s body all the way to the floor and a hood for the head. “Who are you and what do you want?”

“I sense turmoil, desperation. How long do you expect to keep them invested, keep them for you and your cause? What if it falls apart? You lose? Who will take care of-”

“Shut up!” the girl shouted, standing up on her feet.

The stranger remained silent and returned his hand to the side. Then he said the thirteen words that she had thought about for so long. “What good are you if you can be tossed aside when you lack?”

Rosa froze as she looked at the girl staring up at the stranger determined. “And what can you offer? Who even are you?”

The figure took off the hood. “My name is Daemon and I’m like you,” he said looking at her straight in the eyes with his. He once more offered his hand to the blue eyed girl. “Someone that is only wanted to be used.”

She hesitated as she pressed her back against the wall, rubbing her arm with uncertainty. “What makes you say that?” the girl asked, more nervously than trying to be tactful.

“As I said,” Daemon continued, lowering himself to her. “I was something to be used too. You sit out here, alone. Not even a bit of sympathy given for a flub in your test. Their bar is very high and sadly psychic abilities aren’t all cut and dry. There is no room for constant mistakes, is there?”

Rosa’s eyes lowered and were filled with honest sadness and worry she felt. A hand of hers was headed to her eyes as a sniffle started but to her surprise, she was beaten to it by Daemon’s larger hand.

“It’s sad…to be tossed aside in favor of ‘better’ talent.” He removed his hand away and once again, he moved his palm towards her, beckoning her to take his hand. “What use is talent if the mind isn’t refined? Maybe she is stronger than you by their standards…but that is where we strive to become more.”

She hesitated, looking at the hand with a debating frown. Looking up at him, she tried to ask something but couldn’t seem to word it.

“It’s alright, the choice is yours to make. After all, no one can make you more…only you can.”

The girl looked up at Daemon’s red eye and then back to his hand as Rosa observed. Her eyes narrowed as she watched her younger self form a confident scowl on her face. Rosa watched the little girl slowly lifted her hand till it was finally cupped into Daemon’s. And just as quickly as it came, the image in Rosa’s head vanished.

Hmm…to think such a pompous prick like him actually has a heart, she muttered in her mind as she stood up. But then again, I shouldn’t be surprised at his strenuousness…maybe one day I should confess to my snooping. Her eyes lowered as if they were feeling slightly guilty. Maybe…I just hope he can help himself so he’ll stop being such a jerk. She about faced and walked out of the woods, heading back to her annoying fellow ruin keepers.

< O >

The sky was sunny, the docks of a small port were brim with life and color. The water was a crisp blue and the shores moved and splashed onto the side in a calming manner.

Demetri sat on one of the docks, arms propping him up from the back, eyes shut, just letting the wind blow all over him. He wore a navy blue vest buttoned up with a nice emblem of a Sorphian Sun on the left.

Suddenly, the sound of a large bell rang behind him. He turned and looked at the West Clock Tower and the sprawling city around it. Of course, it wasn’t easy to see more than just the taller buildings from the small dock he sat at, but that didn’t matter with the large West Clock Tower displaying eleven o’clock to the world. He let out a sigh as he stood up and shoved his hands into the vest’s pockets. It was a fun visit. He muttered in his head with a smile.

“Demetri!” a voice called out to him from the left.

He gave a little chuckle as he turned saying, “Coming dad.” Before he could face the direction of the calling, Demetri was promptly shoved off the wooden dock and into the water. The surprise caused him to flail in the water for a second before remembering how to swim and promptly keep his head above the waters. He looked up at his assailant only to see a laughing Zak.

“Zak!” Demetri shouted, taking in a mouthful of water in the process.

“Sorry Demetri, I couldn’t help it. Here.” Zak sprawled onto the dock and reached his arm out to help pull Demetri up.

Demetri took it and with a troublemaking grin, proceeded to pull Zak in as well. He laughed aloud at Zak’s screeching before being silenced by the waters before coming up for air and promptly cursing with every word in his dictionary.

“You lads,” a voice spoke from the docks. Demetri stopped laughing as he looked up.

“Heh, you know Zak has a prankster heart,” Demetri said with a smile.

The hand of an older grumpig held out to him. “Come on, let’s get ye both dried off.”

Demetri and Zak nodded. As the grumpig reached out to the older one the light from the sun reflected off of something, shining in Demetri’s eyes. He shot his arm in the way of the blinding sensation and head went under the waves. Shaking his head to snap himself out of it, he started swimming back up. As he did, he was struck by a sudden shock, like his muscle converted to a paralyzed status. He struggled and flailed slowing falling deeper and deeper into the water as he was running out of breath. He looked up, seeing the sunlight rays from under the water. Trying his best, he struggled to kick his legs but to no avail. He was slipping deeper and deeper. Terror began to grip him as he was nearing time to take a breath.

Come on, he shouted in his head, trying to focus off his fear and onto surviving. You’ve got to move. He tried to levitate himself psychically, but upon attempt he was struck with a painful migraine. It was enough to make him open his mouth slightly, having water gush into an unprepared mouth.

His head was spinning and his eyes shut. He shot forwards, gasping. To his surprise, there was air. Slowly, he looked around the room, seeing the white walls of some kind of resting room. He was covered in sweat that had apparently dampened the bed’s blanket a little. Somehow, his hand found his head without him knowing it, startling him at first with the unrecognized touch. He looked at his hand and just…processed what just happened.

It…it was just a dream, he reasoned in his head, trying to calm down and slow down his breathing. I mean…Zak and my dad. Haven’t seen Zak for a while and my dad for years. Letting go of his head, Demetri decided to look around the room. Did I?...What happened to me?

His inner question was soon to receive and answer for when he thought this he was promptly startled by a loud and buzzy sounding, “Demetri!!!” Demetri shot his gaze at the door, at Devon, who was pleased to see his peer was awake.

“You alright?” Devon inquired, buzzing over to Demetri’s bedside, “I found you unconiouzzz on a roof.”

“Uh…huh?” Demetri titled his head, confused. “I don’t…remember a…hmm.” Demetri tried to meditate into his mind, see if he could find something relating to what happened before blacking out.

Devon waited patiently for Demetri to end, sadly with no results. Before Demetri could ask him anything Devon was the first to start. “Hey, zzzo I obzzzerved them like you ordered and they’re going to Plainier town.”

“Wait, what?” Demetri exclaimed. “When are they leaving?”

“They already left,” Devon corrected.

Immediately upon hearing this, Demetri cursed, “Fu**ing what‽ Damnit of all the times I fall fu**ing asleep, I had to-”

“It’zzz fine zzzir,” Devon interjected. “We know where they are going. Once you are better we can-”

“Fu** that!” Demetri bluntly stated, pulling the blanket off of himself. “We need to hurry befo-” he was promptly interrupted with an almost face-plant onto the floor from his dizziness at moving up so fast. Thankfully, Devon managed to get in and save Demetri from a potential nose bleed.

“Eazzzy zzzir,” Devon said, almost as if he was trying to say an order nicely. “You juzzzt woke up. You need to get your ground legzzz back before you can really go after them.” Demetri was about to protest but was promptly shut down by Devon buzzing right in front of his face stating with a forced stern expression. “Lizzzten zzzir, if you can’t zzzo much azzz walk to the door without faceplanting, then zzzcrew trying to catch up. At leazzzt have zzzome breakfezzzt firzzzt before you get yourzzzelf darn near lamed becauzzze you wanna ruzzzh it!”

Demetri just paused, just staring a scowl back at Devon, who was doing his best not to back down. After twenty seconds of this stare off, Demetri let out a sigh, let his head fall, and remorsefully said, “You’re right. Sorry for yelling. I just…well…it was sud-…? Devon?” at his knees was Devon, giving of panting breaths of relief. “Why are you shaking?”

“Zorry zir,” Devon said with a weak vikavolt smile. “I juzzzt am not known for being loud or commanding zzzo it felt kind of weird, heh.”

Demetri gave a little chuckle and smiled, saying, “First time for everything I guess. Good sign you are learning the trade, talking back to your superior with a convincing argument.”

“I…juzzzt don’t want to make a habit of it,” Devon laughed with a little crack of nervousness woven into it.

Demetri nodded, and let Devon help him to the door so they could get ready to pursue. Despite the dream he had, Demetri attempted to be optimistic as they headed out. As they headed down the hall Demetri muttered in a low tone, “Thanks, for the help Devon.”

“No problem zzzir,”Devon replied happily.

“A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.”
– Unknown
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