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Old June 2nd, 2016 (7:44 PM).
Venia Silente's Avatar
Venia Silente Venia Silente is online now
Worrisome, but also Charming
     
    Join Date: Oct 2008
    Location: behind that truck
    Gender: Male
    Nature: Timid
    Posts: 609
    Hey everyone, here comes guess who!

    It's been a good time since I published for this forum, and I apologize for that, so I thought of bringing one of my most recent stories to fix that. Here I bring to you a piece of writing, half born out of madness and half out of real-life experience. I'd like to present to you my entry to Serebii's Criminal Intent 2015 Writing Contest 2015 Writing Contest.

    The prompt of the contest was that of showcasing life and works of an "evil team" and I decided to use a somewhat old plot Nido that I had lying around. I went with a somewhat peculiar take on the subject, which I hope you will enjoy. The chosen test subject is none other than a character we all know and love: the leader of Team Rocket!

    And no, I don't mean Mr. Giovanni, nice as he is, but the actual leader of Team Rocket; he who is always there, observing and spending quality time with Giovanni, never leaving his side, for as much as the Gym Leader might be an evil guy who is not above hurting Pokémon en masse to achieve his goals, it can not be denied that Giovanni truly loves… none other than his Persian, his cat; alas many of us know that there is no such thing as a “cat owner”, but rather, humans who are given the privilege and regale of a feline's company and -more importantly- oversight.


    Thanks to blogger Virgil134 for providing the image reference

    (That and a divetackle to vital organs at 5 AM from the top of the shelf. Gotta love cats.)

    So… what do you say if we take a sneak peek at the daily life of one of the, if not the, Top Cats of the Pokémon world? Here's hoping you enjoy it - and some if you strongly identify with it.

    “Overlord”


    Flick… flick… flick…

    “…That said, it is an unique opportunity for your company.” The voice came from the Persian’s human, a man sitting on the swivel chair at the end of the table- the chair the Persian always liked to keep an eye on during human meetings. “With only a signature, that legion of lawyers Devon keeps by your development offices, gone…”

    Then came the sound of a finger flick and the chair bent back a bit, with just the precision and the absolute minimum of sound, enough to indicate a move well practised, perfected, enjoyed.

    “In a matter of hours.”

    The other humans were at this point squinting at the Persian’s human, sometimes leaning on the table for extra closeness, the lights on the room dim and focused on the pieces of artwork around the table. For the Persian the lights were just perfect, not that he needed them.

    The cat's tail continued to flick about. In the darkness he could perceive a tall woman of open, commanding gestures arguing with an older human who calmly read through every page, every line, as if looking for inscrutable clues that would save his team from this dire situation. There were two other people trying to go over the documents and discuss options, but the old man showed his erudition by keeping focused on the precise task at hand.

    The Persian’s human caught on some of the argument and the cat saw his human’s mouth twist only slightly in a gesture full of vindictive pleasure.

    The Persian’s ear instinctively leaned to the left to catch the sound of head scratching and of hands running through folders and papers. The humans left around a scent not unlike that of stressed and cornered prey, Persian noticed. The dim light revealed their hands as sweaty and shaky, they would momentarily close into fists and meet the table for each possible route of escape that the human in charge of examining documents would preemptively refute as a dead end.

    The feline decided that his human’s threat had brought about the desired effect.

    Or… perhaps, nearly the desired effect. The Persian buffed and stirred on the carpet for a moment, struggling to fight increasing pangs of hunger and a growing desire for a bit of moonlight and fresh air. And perhaps a small live Pidgey to eat.

    Flick… flick… flick…

    Moonlight, finally… The Persian looked to the side opposite to that of the window to witness the twisting of the shadows of the humans, invisible for them, cast on the other side of the room. The pale but growing moonlight reached through the curtains, and with those flailing ghosts it ornamented the logo of the “city of evergreen” that featured as the largest icon in that wall.

    “The… the patent managers were insistent that…” came the voice of one of the male humans at the other side of the table, followed by more shuffling of papers, “we were to discuss any alternatives with the project supervisors…”

    Oh no, here they were with the hesitation again.

    For the thirty-somethingth time already.

    Flick… flick… flick…

    The Persian took a look at the window, his tail still flicking about as it had been for over half an hour already. The curtains were completely closed and the feline could only barely perceive the lazily swirling city lights past them, as the shine of the Moon reached higher into the sky.

    Yawn…

    …Had this meeting lasted that long?

    The attention of the cat was forcibly returned to the table by a quiet and exasperated breath coming from the person sitting at the swivel chair.

    “Did he? The project supervisor, hmmm.” The human leaned forwards and rested his arms on the table this time, with only his business black attire and his Boldorex watch coming under the light. “He will attest that the terms have barely changed, if at all.”

    The Persian could now sense the stress expressed in his human’s hands almost scratching the table, the same way the Persian’s claws would less than amicably stroke the carpet.

    Flick… flick… flick…

    The Persian stretched his claws. He only knew bits and pieces of the human business language, but he was quite familiar with the language of their bodies, more than enough to understand he was not the only one fed up with the pathetic indecisions of those future subjects.

    One of the women in the team spoke this time. “Our team would like to return to the hotel,” came her voice, older and assured, but still tense as the woman faced the certainty in the voice of the Persian’s human, “and rest a little to more adequately review the terms of this offer.”

    …They had to be kidding.

    Flick flick flick flick…

    The Persian sighed and let his fangs show, his tail swinging back and forth more menacingly now, sensing for something to swat.

    ...They had DARED!

    Flick flick flick flick…

    Dared to make him wait even more. Such an annoyance.

    They are simply weaker than my human, thus they are bound to serve me”, the Persian thought, letting his fangs show for a moment. “They just have to accept it.

    Work for the Persian had been hard during the last few days, and surely those days had been hard for his subjects, too.

    For them and for his partner in crime…

    For weeks the human led his people in arduous tasks to please the Persian. The subjects did everything that was requested of them at any time of the day they were asked to. Even if they had just been conquered and were untrained, they would obey.

    Flick… flick… flick…

    He had to admit they did things right, yes.

    It had been a long time in the past, but Persian remembered. When he had once gotten bored with simple marbles to play with and his human, busy with the rites of attending to a Gym challenge, was not available to tend to him, Persian went to file his complaint to his human’s mate. The next day his human tasked some subjects to go fetch beautiful, amber-like rocks from the mountains to the north for the cat to play with and swat around.

    Or that time not too long ago, when Persian grew irate that the campus was bereft of Rattata to chase and play around with; the human gathered his subjects at the backyard and ordered that they were to be issued Zubat and Grimer as partners instead.

    Once or twice a season, when the Persian started to get bored of the same buildings, the same house, the same alleys, his human and his subjects would take him to various expeditions and places of enjoyment, such as the fenced land where he and his human could hunt Pokémon at their leisure, or -as was the case last time- the town to the east with the cemetery tower, where the human had ordered his subjects to run pranks and bully the Trainers around.

    Yes, it was their job…

    Yes, it was done well.

    Flick… flick… flick…

    But right now Persian wanted to have fun, to play with his human partner and to frolic around under the moonlight... Wasn’t that his human’s job, too? The Persian took it as a given. Besides, he… they, were more than fed up with educating future subjects today.

    A part of him even wondered, in his boredom, if his subjects were allowed to have fun too. Perhaps they were having fun with their Rattata - his Rattata- while he was caged here with his human and some cowards from the next town over.

    Thump.

    The feline scowled as his tail slapped the carpet. Fun for the plebeians, the thought!

    Perhaps it was best that the Persian made his opinion… no, his command, on the matter, known right now.

    As he came to a decision, the Persian heard and sensed his human’s posture become more rigid, his voice harsher. The commanding attitude both had learned during their lives came off from the human naturally; his human had learned it well, thought the Persian, realizing that the human must have sensed the cat’s decision too.

    “Our buyout offer is as it stands right here and now. Leave this table, and I withdraw it along with the rest of our…”, the Persian heard the chair swivel, “current assistance.”

    A threat of hunt. The Persian’s eyes opened wider.

    His curiosity piqued, the Persian stretched once again and sat on his hind legs. He focused his eyes and saw clearly that the human was no longer watching his interlocutors. Such lesser beings even among their own kind, entangled in their documents of strange and binding language, arguing with each other, likely about how to take their now assured defeat.

    Persian turned to his human and saw he had turned away to the covered windows. His hands held in front of his face, his fingers interlocked, the gesture hiding what would be in a cat the threat of fangs; but the gesture did nothing to hide the rest of his face, tensed in a private agony, or his eyes, which tried to reach to something beyond the office they were all sitting in.

    Flick… flick… flick…

    Persian knew full well where his human had turned his sights to. Far beyond the reaches of the night, filled by the closer and more soothing voices of the female and the child his human had had for a family, there was the abode that the human and sometimes the feline called “home”.

    Yes. This was a shared desire.

    And as such, it should be command.

    A tug on the human's pants brought his eyes down, to meet those of the Persian that had just reached to him; for a brief moment they looked into each other, only able to reveal in their half-openness the extreme tiredness and the souring mood taking over the two of them.

    That was allowed to last a little. They were partners, and would well inform each other of their wants and pains.

    Then came the jump to the human’s lap. That was more because of tradition, but also because the Persian wanted to gain a higher ground. He was not to let a bunch of cowards force him to have to look them up.

    Staring at the four or five humans didn’t last long. They were still busy discussing their surrender anyway. The Persian’s human let one of his hands approach and stroke the Persian’s fur, right in the base of the head and around the neck and from there to the chin. Those carefully timed movements had been practised by the human and the Pokémon for years, to maximize pleasure and minimize the effort required. The Persian’s human sighed, probably thinking back to times where petting and playing were more frequent activities.

    Over the table, the voices of the team of future servants reached the Persian, but he did not care about the contradictory mix of defiance and resignation in the older woman and in the man of skill in contracts.


    He wanted attention. He cared only of having time to share with his human.

    Purr~

    The feline Pokémon stared at his partner for a moment, purring softly (so that the others wouldn’t hear him) and then softly closed his eyes, this request finally having a noticeable effect. The human raised his hand and interrupted the negotiations with a stern voice.

    “My… friends,” the words came forth as a fake compliment, with a hint of feline scorn even, “maybe you are right… this is such an ungodly hour. Let’s continue to discuss the terms of our involvement tomorrow, when we all feel more refreshed.”

    The Persian could feel his partner's shared eagerness to get out of that place and took the first step, from his lap to the carpeted ground below. From there, he wasted no time to rush to one of the thick doors that served as exits. He sat there facing the door, not bothering to make any effort to further acknowledge the losers he had left behind. At most he turned an ear to verify that his human was soon following.

    In fact, just a bit later, the human's hand reached for the knob and the feline turned a last bit of attention to the workers he and his human left behind. The servants-to-be tired and confused as they continued to examine the documents and hushed about what had gone through “director Giovanni’s” head just now.

    Servants, be they standing or new, always would lack the required understanding.

    Right now they mattered not, anyway.







    Ah, finally free. Outside.

    It was a bit chilly compared to the inside and the streetlights had been behaving weird for a couple of days straight, sure, but the Persian’s natural coat of fur and natural eyesight took care of most of that.

    The Persian felt very pleased at being able to stretch and breathe. Finally getting to the park, the greenest area in an already green city, dispelled much of the feline’s worries. During the walk to get outside of the building his claws had tried every surface: the fine wine red carpeting, the strangely tiled glass-like floor by the elevator, the shoes of a secretary who dared interrupt them with a report about a “zap dose”, the ivory pillars by the lobby even. The cat had felt growing pleasure in reacquainting himself with the outside world and with growing pleasure came purrs also growing louder.

    The human on the other paw, had taken off his jacket and made his way out yawning and stretching every once in a while, when he stopped to examine the various ornaments such as paintings, flowerpots and statues. He would take in every sight and every scent of their path to the freedom outside.

    As the two reached to the first floor and headed to the last door out of the lobby, the feline deigned to look behind at the place. The wine red carpeting had been nice, and the feline made a point to check that his subjects had not fixed the little holes he had left after next meeting. Because there would be a next one. Hissing and scratching at the secretary to assert his dominance was fun too, and the face of disingenuousness -mock disingenuousness, at that- that his human had given to him while reprimanding him had been totally worth it.

    But all that was part of the job. What he was going after was leisure.

    The pair greeted the final security guard with a nod and a meow and then walked outside of the building; they did not stop or look behind when the automatic doors closed, they just continued walking until they got to the overhead pass that connected to the park the across the street. Even then they only walked faster, never slower, until they had crossed it.

    They were part of it now. Among the trees and lampposts of the manmade forest and in the middle of the night: freedom. The Persian sniffed around and looked up to a world that, while nocturnal and shadowy for the humans, was full of sound and light and bursting activity for the feline. All of the moonlight, all of the city’s secrets were now at their disposal.

    Meow.

    The Persian called up and received some pets on his head, right by the jewel that crowned it. The city could come later, right now he deserved this: some time for petting, and for relaxation.

    A moment after, the human and Pokémon were sitting on a bench. The human folded his jacket over his shoulder and arm, to cover himself from the wind coming that direction, and the two of them relaxed and whiled away some time just watching the world go by. It took some minutes for the human to finally express his feelings about the meeting, which he did with a tired slight of some sort towards the mother of one of the “accountant” humans in the losers team. Whichever of them her son was, with how the day had been going, he likely deserved it. No matter who the mother was, the Persian decided.

    The Persian made a mental note to have that accountant be found and cast out during the next meeting. Under what kind of punishment he didn't get to figure out, as the Pokémon's mood was soothed by the sudden and much welcome touch of the human on the creature's forehead, which then moved to the top of the head and from there -oh, bliss, oh vibrations and harmonic inhalations- to the neck and torso.

    And he had thought that meeting was never going to be over…

    Meow.

    The Persian stretched his neck and purred for a moment. He rolled on the bench by the human a couple of times, elegantly scratching the wood, and in return the human leaned over and searched across the Persian's back for more spots to be pet and scratched.

    Much of the day had been wasted in silly human incompetence, so the feline was quick to guide the human’s touch to the shoulder and the base of the neck, the spots he loved so much to have rubbed and cleared of loose fur.

    The two talked for several minutes while they allowed themselves to expel the stress of the day. They talked about family, about back-alley concerts, about Poké balls, about the Gym in the city, about prey offerings, about the moonlight.... After that, the feline grew restless. He needed to stretch his muscles and let them loose.

    The human looked around, there were barely any people this time of the night. The feline listened around too, all of the birds were sleeping or occupying themselves watching over the humans in the busy streets with unsatisfiable curiosity. The wind was low but firm, and surely had already revealed the Persian’s presence to the Pokémon living around the area, as not even the Caterpie were wandering around. The Persian huffed in annoyance.

    That was when it happened.

    He should have known “it” would come to tease and fight in a moment like this.

    It” shone near the fountain and quickly darted across the ground, heading towards a nearby tree. Somehow it disappeared and then appeared on the next tree and from there and blinked its red form over to a bench nearby, mocking Persian.

    It was “it” again. The Persian tensed and stood up, he tried to bump his head against the human’s to guide his sight to where the strange creature was. The human laughed, tensed a bit, but followed the motion and explained something that the cat did not understand – at least not the words, but the tone and intent were more than clear enough. “It” was there, and it had to be caught or chased away.

    Yes, this time it would not escape. The Persian stood on his human’s lap and scratched at his legs in preparation. He stared at the creature, dancing in the night with its offending red brightness, crossing from place to place and vanishing into thin air along the way. The feline’s body readied, his hindquarters and tail shaking to flex his muscles and set them to the finesse and precision required for the chase, his ears flattened, his whiskers folded to his muzzle.

    The creature halted by some bushes where there was a plaque commemorating the creation of the park.

    The human said the word.

    The Persian leapt after the creature with a hiss, claws out and tail sprung and ready for the maneuvers that would be required for capturing this creature that was even smaller, more agile and more evasive than the best trained Joltik.

    This would be the Persian’s retribution for the day-long meeting. As the strange creature danced away, the predator leapt and circled around, and took over the park with a threatening roar- for nothing more was required. Even if it was by proxy, this park, these buildings, this city, they were his.

    And this creature had to learn that.

    Tonight, the Red Dot would fall.






    The cat was, of course, not the only one aware of the worship his subjects owed to him after all those days and weeks of endless meetings. Otherwise he would not have had a partner.

    Giovanni had been thinking of something for a long time... a surprise, a well planned gift... an idea born, developed, and realized in the highest secrecy. It had come into being beneath the city's bustling streets, beyond the rhythms of time set by the sun, above the need to call to friends for support. Most importantly, it was hidden from even the cat's suspicion, for the cat deserved not only the best offerings and gifts, but also the best emotions of thrill from the gifts and of pleasure from the offerings.

    It came about much later, when the city's vibrant green had cycled into a more muddy and brownish and then back to the vibrant green after the customary snowy months When the Persian's human was requested by the humans in white coats to come to a strange underground labyrinth of plastic and metal, far from the city's greenery.

    ----


    Persian personally did not like the place, and sometimes wondered why Giovanni did. The wires and machines hidden behind the walls were noisy- not that the humans ever seemed to notice- and the place was uncomfortably dry.

    The place felt disorderly unlike the offices in the human city. Everyone moved around barely speaking a word or making a gesture to each other, or to the cat. He was not able to understand what the humans were doing with all those strange machines, and from the recurring sight of them scratching their heads, or spending hours examining the same page of a book, or screaming and kicking for answers at computers far bigger than the ones the family had in their abode, sometimes Persian had the impression they didn't understand either.

    The people there did show respect and obedience towards the Persian’s human, as much as the cat knew. Still, they seemed to be working for someone else, not for the Persian, something that he did not like.

    The day accorded for the visit came. The Persian obliged to Giovanni’s request and decided to accompany him and ignore the dry corridors and the disrespectful people, if only just long enough to comply with the personal request his human had made to him.

    It had been a very good excuse, Persian would later admit. Some people were fixing the house and the family all had to leave for the whole day, forcing Giovanni to bring along his child, his heir, to the human's various jobs, where he needed for Persian to keep him entertained.

    Not safe, entertained. The child, walking across the corridors right behind his father, had his own protector and partner already to keep him safe, idly sprawled on top of the little human's head and well camouflaged in the child’s mess of red hair – except for its purple horn and ears. While it certainly was not a fellow feline, Persian approved of the choice. The more considering it had been a gift for the Persian and his adopted family.

    Hiss…

    Besides, it was disrespectful and inelegant for a cat to refuse a gift – they would, as Persian did several times, merely feign disdain at the given moment.

    At least he did not have to pretend he did not dislike the underground place.

    Eventually some men in long white coats joined the small group and they started complaining about this and that while trying to shove sheets of paper and small cards on Giovanni’s hands.

    “But, Sir, it’s not ready!”

    “It’s still a couple of months down the road for completion, in particular considering the recent… defections among the top personnel.”

    They led the Persian’s human to an elevator and from there to some hidden chambers, each hidden behind a thicker door than the previous one.

    “It’s still incapable of proactive defense, Sir; I can assure the heir and the cat won’t be in danger. Technically, Sir, at this moment it’s not even developed enough to be sentient.”

    “We can deliver the results advertised, but we need a guarantee on the time frames we requested… please don’t fire me Sir.”

    All the way the child with his Nidoran-for-a-hat followed, though slowly falling behind as he trailed off to take notice of every door and every window pane, impressed with the artifacts and computers in the facility and the people working with them, working for his father.

    Further behind, Persian followed after the main group, always alert and leaving to his senses of smell and hearing the task of detecting any danger to his human. His tail was flicked up and curled, and he took advantage of the little human trailing off to afford himself a slower, quieter and more secure walk. He kept an eye on the boy at all times, for even though he had his own partner now, the two were still but children.

    Hiss…

    The Nidoran’s ear turned to track the sounds made by the Persian, but the Pokémon did not otherwise move. Persian just wanted the meetings to be over. If anything, the danger would come from himself and his claws if this one lasted any longer than the Persian cared to remain around the place.

    Not five minutes later the group reached the final chamber- much larger than the others, and also much more tidy, Persian observed. Not nearly as many machines or wires, the ground was clean and shiny, and besides the computer chairs and the consoles there were barely any features.

    Giovanni instructed the child to sit on a chair as he walked to the center of the room, accompanied by two men and a woman in white coats. Persian remained in place, bothered by something. His tail flicked about and his ears flared as Giovanni reached fora very large object standing at the center of the room.

    Persian’s paws pressed on the floor. Hard, metallic, clearly not a carpet at all. He then turned around and examined the room. The room was full of screens, chairs and consoles, most of the seats occupied with subjects watching paper print and fiddling with the consoles. On one side of the room, there were several devices on shelves; those devices had small tubes and syringes.

    Overall the room was not unlike the ones Persian would see during his visits to a Pokémon Center.

    …Uh oh…

    Hiss…

    The devices, the people in lab coats… Suddenly Persian’s fur stood on end as the Pokémon felt caged and hissed at some of the people in coats; he wondered if it was himself who was in danger. The cat sidled up against Giovanni and gave him a warm call with his ears flattened against his head and the biggest, pearliest pretty eyes he could make, demanding (requesting, not that he would let anyone but his human know that) protection and attention.

    Meow?

    Had he… been brought to the vet?

    No, Giovanni’s soothing words and relaxing petting answered.

    Persian chose to believe. His whiskers flicked as his senses confirmed his suspicions, this was definitely not a meeting room. There were no other Pokémon around either. Perhaps it was not a Pokémon Center either. Giovanni was calm and none of the humans in lab coats had fixated their interests on the cat. Half grateful, half worried, Persian purred contently at his human for a moment, though his tail was still twirling anxiously.

    Was it not for the heir, Persian would seriously consider just bolting out of the place.

    Giovanni and three humans in white coats stood around what appeared to be a large glass cylinder. The tube reached up to the ceiling and seemed to be anchored to the floor by a huge block of metal with lights and switches. That was the main attraction today, that much Persian got, but he still couldn’t figure out what it was.

    While the three people in coats greeted Giovanni and started explaining some things, Persian took a look back at the child to see him fiddling with a console and swiveling back and forth slowly in his chair, while the Nidoran idly nibbled at some strands of the little boy’s loose hair, drawing giggles from the often serious heir. The little creature probably mistook the hair for grass.

    A smirk.

    At least someone was having fun here. Child entertained? Request accomplished! Persian purred, satisfied that this task hadn’t required him to so much as lift a claw in effort, and turned around to care about his human.

    “As Doctor Fuji explained in his first report,” spoke the older man of the two, not shifting his posture and not staring at the Persian or his human, “the sample was too damaged to reproduce most of its properties…”

    The woman spoke next. “At this stage we can hardly measure the creature’s psychic signature, Sir, but we’re certain it’s already equivalent to that of an Abra.”

    Yawn…

    Fine, a Pokémon then, Persian thought. It must be somewhere. He squinted at the tube, noticed there seemed to be some bubbles and a hard to distinguish shape tied to wires hanging from the ceiling. Was this “it”?

    Persian turned and stared at one of the humans exasperatedly, demanding an answer. One of them, the woman, seemed to notice and nervously turned to address the Persian’s human.

    “Well Sir, it’s alive and doing well, but the embryonic structure still needs some adjustments. The neck cord’s transmission node still does not work properly.”

    Giovanni stepped closer to the tube, as did Persian, and the two looked at it more closely. Past the glass, Persian could make out what appeared to be a small creature curled up inside.

    Persian blinked. The creature was floating in something like water. Were these humans working on teaching a Pokémon how to swim or something like that? Persian rolled his eyes, wondering if perhaps these humans were let to have too much fun.

    The conversation between the humans continued, but Persian only cared to grab little bits for it – after all, this was all beginning to feel like a meeting.

    “We can do it. It will be smarter, it will think faster…”

    That was the voice of the younger male, hesitant and pleading. Bah.

    “Please consider the extra funding requested, Sir.” This time it was the woman who spoke, denoting a sensation similar to what Persian would think was the thrill of the hunt in humans. “We have a good shot to control and neutralize even those Hoenn lunatics with their ideas to raise dormant super-Pokémon, Sir.”

    The insecure man spoke again, trying to sound more convincing. “It will be the ultimate life form, Sir.”

    Persian sat and stared at the tube idly, licking his paws clean for a moment as he listened with slight disbelief. What? What heresy was this, were these people talking about making a creature that would control people better than a cat does?

    Persian scowled at the lab coat people, in particular at the insecure man. They were disrespectful, ungrateful towards the Persian, and they came to the human with weird ideas about the superiority of un-feline creatures.

    Persian thought of his human and of the child, and of how busy his human was. The child had been given to his protection. Surely these people could clearly not be left to fool around and idle unsupervised around him.

    Meow.

    Giovanni looked down at his partner and raised an eyebrow at the sudden and angry reclamation. Persian opened his eyes wider in response and meowed his concerns again, trying to be as concise as possible. The human seemed to understand: he turned to the three people in lab coats, crossed curt words with them for a moment, and with an elegant gesture with his hand he shooed two of them away. Persian observed as the woman and the younger man retreated and left the room through a side door, looking worried.

    Two out of three. A good start.

    Giovanni spent some time speaking to the third scientist while Persian pondered what offense exactly would these humans be incurring into, his tail flicking up and thumping down in a mixture of exasperation and inquisitiveness. They were looking for what, an ultimate life form? Persian rolled his eyes, he was right there with them, in all his feline grace!

    It did not hit him that perhaps they meant something like “another cat”.

    Giovanni scanned his Persian’s expressions for a moment. The menacing eyes, the movements his tail did, the back and hind legs flexed and ready to get out of the place, yet the Pokémon’s ears and glare still fixated on the tube. The human spoke to the Persian and the feline, sensing confusion in his human, answered by reaching to the tube and gently pressing his chin and cheeks against it. It was his after all, like everything else here, and he wanted to know more about it.

    Giovanni smiled and turned to his kid. “Son, come here, lemme introduce you and Persian to a special someone.”

    As the child left his chair and approached, Giovanni produced from his suit a small card and showed it to him and then to Persian. The child looked interested and started asking questions, but Persian could not make out the fine details in the card. The only thing he understood was a rudely drawn figure somewhat similar to a young cat.

    Giovanni started explaining to Persian and the little heir, and as the kid started asking questions, everything became suddenly clearer to Persian. He knew in ancient times humans were more sincere and thorough in their worship towards cats as the graceful pinnacles of nature they were. It seemed Giovanni disliked such lack of commitment and had put his people - Persian’s people - hard to work. The cat in the card was a deity among felines, long gone and only rarely heard of, and the humans in the laboratory had been gathered to create some sort of idol in its semblance.

    From Persian’s perspective, it would be quite an arduous task. Even for cats themselves it took years to master the graceful and silent movements that made them adored.

    Then Giovanni added that this cat-idol creature was to be a powerful hunter as service to Persian and his human. Where the servants spent so many time and Rattata to catch a bunch of Tauros, this new creature would, with ultimate feline skill, do it alone and at once. Persian and Giovanni probably thought the same thing, although from different perspectives: Persian saw he would have a new partner, a left paw that would go outside and fight against other Pokémon while his right paw partner, his human, would exert his dominance with papers and contracts from inside the human buildings.

    Giovanni walked around the tube, examining it as he spoke to the lab coat man. “Much as it is a clone, it shall become different enough that we can call him our creation.” He stroked the glass carefully with the full palm of his hand, as if imitating the Persian’s demonstrations of dominion, and seemed lost in thought for a moment. “So has the team finally settled on a name for this creature?”

    Persian could hear the surprise and confusion in the other man’s voice as he mumbled one thing or another, incomplete words in a hushed voice. The man looked at Giovanni, at the child and at the Persian and finally to Giovanni again.

    “Considering how much it will still look like the original and the overall direction of the project… er, the head neuroprogrammers still want to call him meow too.”

    Meow?

    Yes, it seemed clear now. Giovanni had these people trying to create a faster, smarter, better cat. But why, why had Persian not been informed?
    The Persian stared at the tube, his eyes opened wide to try and catch a clear view of who slept inside. His forepaws pressed hard against the glass, trying to get a firm grip, though they would slip down almost instantly, forcing the Persian to raise his paws and scratch the slippery surface again. The humans in coats seemed to see this as a bad thing, but a glare from the Persian and some words from his human put them back in their place.

    The humans had clearly said “meow too”, right? It had to look like the one in the card. Had to be a fellow feline!

    Through the glass it seemed to have the long tail, too, and it looked like the cat figure in the card, just a different kind of ugly and rough. Persian’s tail was going flick-thump. He wanted to know more about this cat.

    Meow!

    Yes, yes. Pats on head. His human replied to the call and ran his fingers across the back of the Pokémon to then return his attention to the tube and the scientists. Figuring out that it was the job of the humans to explain, Persian did the same.

    Giovanni continued to talk about this new cat with the people in lab coats as he stroke Persian’s fur. The feline focused on the glass tube and after a moment of thinking this through, realized.

    It was to be a better hunter, a better fighter, a better cat. There was only one Pokémon this future feline could sit alongside to, it seemed only natural.

    Giovanni did this, Giovanni knew, but Persian did not. This future feline was a surprise for Persian. A gift, a friend that would be in certain ways closer than Giovanni himself could be.

    Persian went back to all fours and walked around the tube, examining it from all directions while Giovanni gleefully explained his plans to the scientists.

    The creature, swimming inside a bubbling teal liquid, did not respond to any scratching or meowing. It was small and seemed to be sleeping. It looked so frail and simple- it reminded Persian of a newly born kitten. And he worried about it in this way, even if he would probably only admit it to Giovanni. Much later, when the creature had grown up.

    Purrrrrr…

    It would grow up not alone. It would have to be taught how to fight and hunt. It would have to be taught to lord over the human servants, yet at the same time to respect and receive respect from its peer and its human handler.

    Yes, it would be glorious. With the might of his human and this new feline friend, they would certainly win every hunt. The Persian's tail twirled anxiously.

    Yes. Even the elusive Red Dot would surely fall to them.

    The cat was content and he was not the only one, as Giovanni spoke of extending the reach of Persian’s domains to the stars above, to unite all people under one nation.

    One where down the line, no longer a dream, all the people shall bow to welcome their new feline overlords.







    There, I hope you have enjoyed it. No cats were disobeyed over the course of writing this story.

    For those interested in a printed version for reading, you can obtain it via this PDF.

    Be seeing you, dear readers, it was a pleasure.
    __________________
    Venia Silente' - Consulting Worldbuilder
    Image will go here...
    one day.

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