Pokémon: A Perfect World (Rexcalibur & BKenScout)

Discussion in 'ROLEPLAY GRAVEYARD' started by Rexcalibur, Nov 16, 2014.

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    It was a normal day, like any other day. Farid Ansari, a young olive-skinned man with a mohawk, dressed in his usual normal clothing - a red hoodie with brown khakis. He woke up at a normal time from his normal bed, was greeted by his normal Pokemon friends, and prepared a normal breakfast for the three of them - a morning like any other. Maybe today they'd go for a run. Or a swim. Or a hike. Or a friendly spar against the gym leader. Things that normal people in this normal town tended to normally do.

    During breakfast, something caught Mighty's attention, drawing the black and grey canine to the window. Maybe he saw a Pachirisu or a Dedenne scuttling about. They loved tearing through the vines outside Farid's house. Again - normal ass things in a normal ass town. Farid and Coco continued munching on their breakfast happily.

    But then the living room exploded.

    The walls came crumbling down, smothering Mighty beneath its weight, as a multicolored beam tore through the room. Farid fell from his chair screaming, knocking over his milk and cereal in the process. Coco began yapping and yelping as well, running up to Farid and huddling beside the boy.

    In the middle of the now destroyed room (with the screams of citizens bursting from outside the house) was a Zubat. Kind of. Farid's vision was blurry - it must've been a Zubat. Blue linen skin with its gaping mouth. Wasn't it? His vision corrected itself soon, and he saw the Zubat waver in the air. It was losing its balance, its wings completely unstable. Only then did Farid get a closer look at it.

    Limbs, there were extra, orange limbs jutting out from its body - five, in particular. They were hardened and sharp, with crimson stains scattered throughout their surfaces. The Zubat's mouth wasn't the pitch black nothingness Farid was used to seeing. No, there was a red gem, glowing brightly within. These were parts of a... Staryu.

    And the thing dashed right at Farid. He cried out.

    "Mighty! Help!"

    From the other side of the room, the canine Mighty uncovered himself from the debris - from the fragments of the wall that had shattered atop him.

    "Mighty!"

    The beast roared and leapt for his owner.

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    As he charged forth, the Mightyena's fangs glowed a brilliant red - red, and redder, and redder, and redder. They soon ignited, fire bursting from his gleaming white teeth, as he sank them into the abomination that was harassing his owner. The Zubat-Staryu hybrid let out an ear-piercing scream as it fell, shaking Mighty right off it. This gave Farid enough time to get on his feet, snatching up little Coco (a Poochyena) with him and motioning for Mighty to follow along.

    The trio made their way outside, with the thing floating right after them in jagged patterns. It let out another multicolored beam their way, though Mighty knocked Farid down in time to avoid it. It was freezing, freezing cold - Aurora Beam? "What the...? They can't learn...!?"

    Another disgusting roar pierced the skies. A simple glance upward revealed the silhouettes of a few flying figures. Great, Silverton City was being raided. At least it wasn't a whole horde, but that didn't mean their sudden blasts on random homes wasn't dangerous.

    Especially not the Unfezant that had just flown by, drawing in a huge gust with it. Well, a kinda Unfezant. With brown spikes on its back. A Sandslash hybrid?

    Then it landed on the gym and began tearing it apart with its talons. Wonderful. Sure knew how to pick a fight with the wrong people. The bird-beast let out a piercing shriek, similar to the Zubat-Staryu's. It was... a cry of anguish, not terror. And yet...​

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    "Ohhh my Arceus," Farid gasped, rising to his feet. "What in the hell is going on here?"
     
    #1 Rexcalibur, Nov 16, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2014
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    So far, Ellenses had proven to be such a beautiful region. Zeke felt the soft breeze wafting over from the woods just beyond the city limits of Silverton. He readjusted the long-sleeved fleece shirt he'd been wearing, fidgeting as he moved it around underneath the weight of his sling's strap. What a pain it was to have to travel with anything; things would be far easier if he could just go. But everything had its price, and if he wanted to stay on the road, then he had to keep a bag packed. So, he compromised for the lightest travel he could possibly pull together. If he needed to, he would stay in a city and ask his parents to send him things from time to time, but apart from that he traveled away from areas during harsher seasons and overseas only during the warmer months. The small backpack was very much full and he had to keep a few changes of clothes and other necessities in a duffel bag on his opposite shoulder, slug across his chest to the opposite hip. The first few weeks of wanderlust like this were unbearable for his shoulders, but it barely seemed like he was carrying any weight nowadays.

    He stuffed his hands into his pockets and looked around... Such a quiet, normal town. It was nice, but it lacked the sound of crashing waves and children shouting jubilantly as they taunted the Magikarp at the surface of the water. Of course, he compared just about everywhere he went to Pacifidlog and Cinnabar Island; they were the two places he'd spent more of his childhood at than anywhere else. He'd not been to Kanto in over two years, and his parents were already growing agitated by his disinterest in returning home for over eight months. Once he'd finally secured passage to Ellenses, he wasn't going to leave before he'd at least been able to do a little bit of sightseeing.

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    He laughed softly and looked down to his side, "Watch it, buddy, you gotta think when you walk." He instructed, stopping as he crouched down to make sure the small Riolu had managed to find his balance again. The small, blue creature was just a baby, having hatched only weeks before. Zeke's trip to Ellenses had been delayed until he could make sure that Xavier, the Riolu, was old enough for travel. Still, he already knew he'd sacrifice anything to keep the youngling safe. It gave a small whine and stared at him, still unable to make anything but the most very basic of sounds. Zeke rolled his eyes and lifted the small Pokemon off the ground, carrying him, much to the Riolu's delight.

    There was another pair of Pokeballs fastened to the traveler's hip - one contained a Flygon, the first Pokemon he caught and trained by himself. Zeke wasn't a big fan of physically capturing Pokemon unless he had to, so his permanent team merely consisted of the two on his hip and the one in his arms. The final ball held a Croconaw, which he'd raised from a Totodile. His family had found the small reptile on the shores of Cianwood Island, injured and lost. After nursing it back to health, Zeke spent hours convincing his parents that, even at his young age, he could take care of the small Pokemon. The Totodile was reluctant to evolve and spent a long time in its childlike, excitable form. He and Zeke had grown up together and together they would change, so the Totodile finally decided to evolve weeks before Zeke turned sixteen.

    The young man took a deep breath of the fresh air in the city, his lungs filling as he closed his eyes. "Oh, the air's so clean out here... Not like it was in Rustboro last year," He commented absently. He started to feel a bit of tension in the air, but shrugged it off, even as Xavier began to fidget about nervously. "C'mon, Xav, let's go see the beach - I heard this place has one of the most beautiful views of the sea..." He smiled and started his walk for the white, sandy beach. The city wasn't deserted by any means, but it must have been far too early for it to be bustling; it was his favourite time of day, bright and early in the morning, just before dawn.

    As he stepped onto the boardwalk and took a seat, stretching his legs out, Xavier sat down beside him with a soft coo. He patted the small Pokemon's head and took in the view as the sun rose over the horizon. The ocean water glittered brightly and it warmed the boy's heart. He felt at home nowhere but here; facing the one thing in this world that was truly endless. The sand was so dry and clean, the white shining brilliantly against the dark blue of the sea. The beach was empty for the morning, which made it all the more relaxing. However, when something splashed in the water, Zeke's eyes darted to it. Finally, it rose, with a few other... things... Xavier stared at them in curiosity, then nervousness before he then clung tightly to his trainer's chest. What was that?

    Zeke yanked a Pokeball from his belt and opened it, pointing it to the ground beside him. Materialized from the bright light was an elegant Flygon who carried herself with more dignity and pride than one might think possible. He'd captured her as a Vibrava and she was quick to evolve, always seeming more mature and filled with ambition. She was undoubtedly his most powerful Pokemon, but he wasn't much of a battler either. Upon a closer look, the thing rising from the water was a Lanturn... But it was flying... How was that possible? Then Zeke noticed the wings. They were nearly transparent... then the antennae and massive eyes. The Lanturn seemed to have been smashed into a Butterfree to make one Pokemon. It was absolutely hideous.

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    "Java, kick up a sandstorm, something's wrong here," He ordered. The Flygon cried out loudly, lifting itself off of the ground with a flap of its wings. It turned its attention to the beach and began to blow the sand into the air and toward the ocean, diluting the visibility.

    "Close your eyes, Xav," He instructed, picking up the Riolu and turning his back to the ocean, taking off. Java was close behind, as more of the hybrid Pokemon seemed to be popping up around the city. His gaze turned on a Mightyena and his trainer as they were running past. Soon, the canine pounced on its owner and narrowly avoided the Aurora Beam coming their way. The cries were horrid and it was all Xavier could do to hide his face and cover his ears desperately. "Java, supersonic," He instructed, "Don't hurt it too much."

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    The sound waves from the Flygon rang through the air and hit the Zubat directly in its sensitive ears. The beast let out another cry, but seemed distracted in its confusion and the Flygon faced off with it and Zeke ran for the dark-skinned boy on the ground. He released Fang, his Croconaw, and the Pokemon was instantly ready to defend his partner, his gaze alert and focused.

    "Hey, you okay?" He asked, taking a knee, "What's going on here?" The boy shrugged his shoulder uncomfortably, fixing his duffel bag's strap as it had slid down slightly in their recent run.
     
    #2 BKenScout, Nov 21, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2014
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    Relief washed over Farid's face as he saw another trainer approach him. His Croconaw scared off the assailing Zubat. "Ohh. Oh Arceus, thank you!" The celebration was short-lived however, as he shuddered upon hearing the Unfezant-hybrid's ear-piercing cry again from behind him. He cringed, his entire body freezing up with goosebumps, though he tried to hide the worry in his voice. "I have... no idea. But this... this isn't..." Farid's eyes widened as he watched over Zeke's shoulder. "Look out!"

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    Coco the Poochyena, who too was shivering and whimpering from the sudden chaos, caught onto her owner's warning and yanked at Zeke's sleeve. Just as the traveler toppled over from the tug, another Aurora Beam shot overhead. This time, though, it was from the floating Lanturn that trailed after him. Similarly to the spiked Zubat, its flight was also erratic. As it prepared another attack, its body simply crashed on the floor instead, due to the injuries and blotched eyesight it sustained from Java's Sandstorm.

    Its wings fluttered with all the strength it could muster, before they slowed. Eventually it withered to a complete stop. The hybrid no longer moved.

    Using Mighty as a crutch, Farid stood himself up and offered a hand to Zeke. "We have to stop this," he muttered, shaking his head. Several other Pokemon hybrids swarmed the area surrounding the two boys. They shrieked their own mutated cries, some of them chasing after fleeing humans, others avoiding them outright, and still others randomly firing attacks at the closest thing or person to them. While some trainers fled the scene entirely among other civilians, some also fought back.

    Farid ground his teeth. "I don't know what's going on here, but we need to--my house! What'd they do to my house!?"

    He clutched at his hood and cried out at the destroyed building in front of him. To make it worse for himself, he ran straight up to the destroyed wall, glossing over every individual piece of furniture in his living room that had been blasted or torn straight through. Even the pesky static rodents that liked to harass his vines were taking cover inside his ruined home, hiding beneath his halved sofa or under the uneven tables.

    "My girlfriend's so gonna kill me...!"

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    Scowling, Farid's Mightyena nudged him before motioning to the busted gym with his snout. Farid turned to see the chaos as well, horror still etched in his eyes. A Hydro Pump erupted from the open interior, firing right at the Unfezant-Sandslash, as well as the blue and bulky Politoed that was scaling the rooftop. The water-type gym leader and his companions were already fighting back, and - "They need as much help as they can get."

    Farid nabbed his backpack from the table he was dining at previously, and turned to Zeke. His expression was an uneasy mix of both resolution and horror. He knew he had to do something, but he was terrified to do it. Coco shared his horror easily, and had dashed up her owner and into his backpack the moment it was slung over his shoulder.

    "You're with me on this, right?" The hooded boy held out his hand. If they were to team up, a quick introduction wouldn't hurt. "I'm Farid by the way, and this is--"

    Of course, he was cut short by the Unfezant's cry again. Mighty snarled at the bird beast and began charging in its direction without further hesitation. His fangs began to hiss and flicker with bright yellow sparks as he ran.

    Another Hydro Pump shot to the skies, but missed the Unfezant. It countered back with a loud screech - Uproar. The attack's recoil caused it to fly back and almost dizzily fall to the ground. Mighty took the opportunity to launch his attack. Unlike Zeke's Pokémon, however, the Mightyena did not hold back.

    "Mighty! Wait!" Farid chased after his companion.​
     
    #3 Rexcalibur, Nov 25, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2014
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    "Gah, wha-" He started until a small weight tugged his arm, and then his whole body to the ground. "Oof!" He groaned as he rolled onto his back in time to see the Aurora Beam fly over head. When his gaze turned, he saw a still-growing Poochyena beside him, "Well thanks, little one," He said brightly, reaching out cautiously and scratching behind her ear. He saw Farid offering a hand and he took it , easily sliding to his feet, despite the weight pulling on his shoulders. Taking a moment to make sure the duffel bag wouldn't fall off, he looked to Farid and nodded with determination, "Stopping it's where we'll start, yeah... But..."

    He finally looked to his attacker, the Lanturn lying on the ground, unmoving. He scowled and shook his head, muttering, "Whatever the fuck is happening here, whoever the hell is responsible, they will answer for it." His voice was venomous and he held tightly to the words of vengeance. They weren't ones he took lightly by any means, either. He clenched his fist until he heard the deafening uproar combatting a blue Politoed. This place kept getting stranger...

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    Zeke noticed the Mightyena's flashing teeth and the fire in its eyes. It held respectable power, that was for sure, but they didn't know anything about these hybrids. He looked to his Flygon, "Java! Gust!" The Pokemon didn't hesitate to react as it rose and readied its wings. Powerful blasts of wind followed in succession from the other flanks of the opposing Pokemon, pushing them both over, and forcing them away from one another slightly.

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    The Croconaw, Fang, then took his move, falling to all fours and letting out a small roar before launching forward, activating an Aqua Jet. However, it wasn't directed - the Croc Pokemon often used it to make his speed formidable, a technique he and Zeke had honed specifically so that he could move about any setting without stumbling as much. It was difficult to control, but his small size made it a lot easier too.

    As the jet of water blew between the Mightyena and its hybrid opponent, the crocodile pivoted its body and let its feet hit the ground, instantly causing its "water shield" to dissipate as he slid to a stop on the concrete, poised for either side to attack.

    Zeke smirked - he loved the way that Java and Fang worked so well together... His mind often worried that Xavier would never really be included in their pairing, but the Riolu was only a child, so maybe he was worrying for nothing. The trainer gave his Croconaw a thumbs up before turnin to Farid, "Call him off - these things look like they're in enough pain... It's not our fault that they're that way, but they don't know how to cope with it. Defense, man," He pleaded before looking around for the gym leader.

    "I'm Zeke, by the way... I think introductions can wait though, yeah? We gotta get out of here or at least calm them down... We need some way to either calm them down or stop them completely..." He began to rack his brain for absolutely anything that could help them, but it didn't seem any of them had moves like Thunder Wave... He furrowed his brow and looked at the scaling Politoed.

    "Where's that Gym Leader at? Shouldn't that Politoed know Hypnosis or something?" He asked, hoping beyond hope... "Java's a lot stronger than she looks and that Politoed can't be that heavy - she could carry him up to have a nice angle and he could use it as like... a broadcast Hypnosis. It might put some of the other trained Pokemon to sleep, but at least nobody will get hurt, right?" He suggested quickly as his eyes darted around... Where was this guy?
     
    #4 BKenScout, Nov 28, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2014
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    Mighty let out a yelp as it was forced away from the spiked Unfezant before he could sink in his teeth. Even as he landed on his feet, the sparks in and around his snout continued to buzz ferociously. He pivoted, ready to pounce back on his target - only to draw back with a snarl as Zeke's Fang forced himself in Mighty's way. He drew a curious expression and allowed his Thunder Fang prep to die down again.​
    Farid stood there dumbfounded. He was barely able to process what he had just witnessed, and his response to Zeke's request was late. "...what? Oh! H, hey, Mighty!" Once the young man caught his Mightyena's attention, he began waving his arms up and down. "Don't just run off like that without my word, okay!? I'm supposed to be your trainer! This isn't how it works!" He let out a sigh, turning his attention first to Zeke, then to the destroyed gym and the Politoed climbing it.

    "Y, you're right, I agree. Poor guys... I can't imagine what they're going through..." His fists tightened.

    Before they could delve into their plans any further, another screech from the Unfezant enveloped the area. The puppy hiding in Farid's backpack howled in pain from this, and flopped out into the open in order to shake off her fur and hopefully the nasty ring in her ears. On the other hand, Mighty had ducked his head on time, covering his own ears with his paws. His eyes scanned the battlefield warily, darting about.

    A beating, a loud beating drummed from behind Fang. The Politoed that was previously scaling the gym had suddenly began to slam its hands onto the wall, shaking it up. It too let out a feral cry, pained, thrashing its own head about in extreme confusion... before dropping from its holding. With its belly revealed, the two trainers could see a black and white swirl on its stomach, where it was normally yellow and green. Its arms too were massive, yet disproportionate. As a result, it fell at a tilt, its right arm pulling it down further from the rooftop. Where it was at recently, another Hydro Pump had escaped the destroyed roof, barely nudging the toad enough to send it off balance.

    It fell right towards Fang.

    If that wasn't enough, the Unfezant too had been hit with splatter damage; watery fragments of the Hydro Pump fell and sprinkled itself along the bird, sending it into a wider frenzy. Its feathers and spiked back began to sizzle, like a chemical reaction. Eyes red and widened, it darted straight down for the Croconaw as well, screeching loudly.
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    Mighty snarled and ceased the electricity engulfing his fangs. He made a jump for the bird and rammed into it with his head. It wasn't as powerful as a true headbutt, but it was enough to keep the bird from landing atop his ally.

    Meanwhile... another Politoed popped from the busted rooftop. His eyes scanned the surrounding beneath him; it seems that the Pokemon he was previously fighting had new targets. Unlike the one falling, he was a healthy green color.​

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    At the same time this new Politoed showed his face, so too did a man appear from the gym's entrance, followed by a couple of shaken swimmers. He looked to Zeke with a broad, calm smile. "What'd you say about a broadcast Hypnosis?"
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    Fang watched as the Politoed fell from the building and readied his own stance. In the next moment, he belted out a torrent of water from his opened maw, pushing the Politoed away from himself and even causing its descent to lose momentum and the Pokemon to land more softly. However, he hadn't been in time to stop the Unfezant as he turned to combat it. Just as it was about to hit him, the Croconaw noticed a black streak fly past and tackle the bird away. The relief on his face was clear as Java flew circles with a pair of Swellow... At this point, it wasn't even worth trying to figure what they were hybrids of. They still flew and they were hostile. It happened in the shortest of seconds; a Hyper Beam tore through air just in front of the Flygon as it hit one of the birds directly in the chest. Blasting it... Farther... Farther... Farther until... it was gone... It fell limply into the trees on the outlying forest. It could barely hold itself up in the first place.

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    "No!!" Zeke cried out in horror as he watched the poor creature get obliterated. It wasn't hard to tell that, even had somebody been on the scene, that Swellow would never make it once it hit the ground out there. The boy stamped his foot and pulled out his Pokeball, ready to withdraw the dragon. Java just wanted to make him proud, he knew that, but she pushed herself too hard and it was often far too aggressive; he wasn't one to enjoy battling much anyway, but she had such a hard time restraining herself in situations like this one that he often had to leave her out of it anyway. Just as he was about to pull her out, he heard the gym leader's voice and looked over.

    "Yeah," He replied, making a circle with his middle finger and thumb, placing them at the edges of his lips and blew. An ear-splitting whistle rang out and Java darted down from the sky to land at his side. Credit where it was due, she was incredibly obedient when she had to be. She had at least two inches and twenty pounds on the average Flygon, making her a formidable presence. "We just need to get the right angle and the right height..." The young boy reached into his pocket and pulled out a small baggie with berries inside. He fished around until he managed to secure a small Chesto Berry. "Java will carry your Politoed up and he'll simply let his Hypnosis travel over the town. If you've got anything to help resist it, I recommend you get it ready, cause we'll get hit too. Otherwise, anybody left up can wake the others," He explained seriously.

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    The trainer looked to Java and nodded in Politoed's direction. She cooed excitedly and scooped up the frog Pokemon, holding it firmly as she flapped her wings with all the force she had. It was a rather difficult task, but she'd had worse jobs to do before. Zeke closed his mouth around the berry and bit, breaking it open and letting some of the juice dribble onto his tongue, but he didn't swallow any of it. He sat down on the ground and withdrew Fang, letting Xavier sit beside him as they had given Java the time they needed to take care of business. The berry was dry and firm, but still edible - though not his favorite to eat, Zeke could stomach it. He watched as the Swellow fell unconscious a short moment after landing and just as he felt his eyes falling shut, the boy swallowed his berry and fought the urge to fall over until the waves of Hypnosis were over. He blinked and shook his head, looking around to see who was able to wake the others up. Once Java returned, he released Fang once more and lightly shook his small Riolu, telling him to help by getting the others jostled.
     
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    As Java took to the sky with the leader's Politoed in tow, little Coco weaved her way out of Farid's bag and onto the ground. Mighty approached the two once the danger surrounding himself and Fang was cleared, though he watched Java attack the Swellows with muted interest as he ran. Once the trio huddled together, a flattened, translucent barrier materialized above them. Coco's concentrated Protect served as an umbrella from the Politoed's broadcast Hypnosis.
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    Throughout Silverton City, people and Pokemon alike, both hybrid and tamed, began to pass out one by one. Trainers who witnessed their friends knock out and those who watched the green frog sail overhead took cover in time. Soon enough, the threats around town were completely neutralized - some peacefully, others not so much. Java and Politoed made sure that no other hybrids actively roamed the streets before returning to their owners. The toad, exaggeratedly, fell onto his back with fatigue once Java released him.
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    "Lookin' a little tired there, buddy," the leader approached his companion with that unending smile of his. To avoid the Hypnosis, he along with the water trainers had taken cover within the gym, under areas that were roofed at least. Close to his Pokemon now, the leader whipped out a red-and-yellow cherry-like berry from his pocket. The Politoed jumped to his feet instantly, and snatched it from his trainer's hand with his tongue.

    The gym leader turned next to his fellow underlings, all of whom looked like they were fresh out of the pool, carrying swim tubes, noodles, and all. He pointed to particular trainers as he gave his orders. "I want you three to guard the city's entrances. The ocean, Route 16, Route 17 - make sure no more of these mutants are comin' in. Yulia and Connor, take your Pelippers and patrol the sky. Everyone else, wake up the sleepers and check who needs help." The leader left the crew for a moment, glancing down every turn of their intersection. "Looks like the hospital is still in tact, thankfully. Nurse Joy might need some assistance though."
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    "Mutants," Farid repeated to himself, shaking his head as the gym leader went on with his instructions to the others. "That's a bit..." He sighed. He turned next to see what Zeke and co. were up to; Mighty had joined them in waking up whoever was closest to them without venturing too far from his owner.

    Before the other swimmers could split, Farid waved to them. "Hey! Hang on a sec! Um. What do you suppose we do with the..." his eyes lingered to one of the sleeping Swellows nearby; this one's wings were almost skeletal in nature, much like a Sigilyph's. "...hybrids? We can't just leave them like this."

    The gym leader brought a hand to his chin in thought, but his trainers already jumped to their replies.

    "Well, we dump 'em into the ocean! How else we gon' get rid of this litter?"

    "What!? Not the sea! Holy Arceus, Pete. Maybe just into the routes or something?"

    "These are Pokemon you're talking about! Don't treat them like they're trash!"

    "They're monsters, Yulia - that's what they are! Legitimate monsters. Look at what they did to our gym!"

    "I dunno, they looked kinda miserable... maybe we should just... put them out? For their sake?"

    "Yeah, then we can bury them!"

    Farid's eyes darted between the speakers with increasing anxiety.​
     
    #7 Rexcalibur, Dec 6, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2014
  8. Stop. No. Stupid... Zeke pinched the bridge of his nose as the most ludicrous ideas were tossed around. Seriously? These, even if mutants, were living creatures... How could anybody even think that these were possible paths? He cleared his throat with obvious volume and stepped forward, looking around.

    "If I see even one person dumping, burying, or trashing the body of any of these dormant Pokémon, I'll personally give them the same fate," he threatened without even thinking. "Did you even look at them? They weren't attacking, they were lashing out... Half of them barely knew how to even use their attacks, it was like they were fighting with themselves while trying to keep us away from them... Yeah, it's disgusting; yes, it's frightening, and I'll be damned if we don't give the ones responsible what-for. But this isn't any way to talk about these poor things. If possible, we'll get every last one of them into a Pokeball and in a Center - even if they have to be spread around to other cities. I know they're not cheap, but with them weak and sleeping, they'll be a cinch to catch with your typical ball... I don't normally keep many on me, but I'd gladly pay to help," He explained his plan quickly, looking to the gym leader for a plan, "This isn't our fault, but it is our responsibility as witnesses to do what we can to help... Throw them in the ocean, my god, barely half of them even came from it." He shook his head and sighed, placing his hands on his hips as he stared at the ground for a moment.

    As his gaze met the gym leader's once more, he quirked a brow, "What do you think?"

    The man seemed at a loss, himself. "Well, I know we can't just... leave them. But in all fairness, we've now got rebuilding to do... The gym's not entirely intact, houses and apartments... People are hurt who need to be seen to... It's a lot of work," he pointed out pragmatically.

    Zeke simply nodded, but there had to be something... "Well we can't just put them all down, that's... That's not an option. They need to be looked at, see if we can find anything out - maybe there's a professor around that'll help us get it taken care of." He wanted to help however he could, but in all honesty he didn't want to stay in Silverton too long either. He'd only just arrived to Ellenses and there was so much left to see. He shoved his hands into the pockets of his fleece, biting the inside of his cheek as he waited for some kind of solution to come to him. He glanced to Faried expectantly, "You got anything, chief?" He asked with a hint of teasing in his voice.

    Xavier had curiously wandered over to one of the sleeping Pokémon before beginning to absently poke and sniff at it in wonder... Strange little thing, he was. Zeke whistled sharply and the Riolu jumped, scurrying back to him. "Don't. You might wake it up. You know not to go wandering off," he chastised, pointing to the space right beside him. The small Pokémon reluctantly took his place at his trainer's side with at least a little bit of shame.
     
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    "Huh? Me?" Farid pointed to himself, eyes widened from the sudden inclusion. He was perfectly fine listening to the others figure out what to do. Caught off guard, he glanced around nervously, stammering as he pieced together his opinion in his head. "If there's a way... to make these guys in less pain, then, I think that's what we should do?" He sighed to himself, bringing a palm to his face. That was the obvious goal, of course. "The real question is, you know... if the Pokemon Centers can help them. I mean, if they can properly help them bring peace back into their lives, somehow."

    He glanced to the nearest sleeping Pokemon to him - the blue Politoed from earlier. A glance from afar would've made this hybrid look like a shiny, but upon closer inspection, his stomach and hands were... The Pokemon twitched and convulsed in its sleep, whimpering and crying to itself. Its legs kicked like it was trying to flee. Farid nearly puked just thinking about what pain the poor thing was enduring, both psychological and physical.

    It wasn't long after Zeke interrupted the trainees' gross discussion that they took off with their leader's original orders. Farid couldn't help but ponder over the last two's suggestions though. How much more of this pain can the hybrids tolerate? If in fact the Pokemon Centers were useless, then... should they not be euthanized? For their own sake?

    Farid dared not say it aloud in Zeke's company. One thing was for sure, though - "Whoever's responsible for this has to be stopped. Immediately. And I won't rest until we catch this bastard."

    [​IMG]
    "All right. Kid," the gym leader looked to Zeke with a smile, "I like your idea. So let's go with that for now. I'll contact the Jennies and Joys of Silverton - see if they can help us out here, get us some extra Pokeballs, and contact the others from neighboring cities. We'll need all the help we can get so we don't overrun a single Center. If we're lucky, we'll be the only town that was hit with this invasion.

    "You two. We'll take care of the mutants here. Don't worry about pitching in. My rookies are guarding the skies and the routes to make sure no more will bust into town. They'll let me know if they catch anything suspicious."

    He looked to Zeke a final time. "I know of a... professor who lives in the town next door. Next door being at the other end of Route 17 - Vault City. She's a bit insane, but she might be able to help you out with how the hybrids got to be this way. Maybe you can catch and bring one to her."
    [​IMG]
    Farid crossed his arms and racked his head in thought as the gym leader spoke on about this. At this point, Mighty had returned beside his owner, also taking on the same contemplative face. Coco, however, had bounced out of Farid's backpack and approached the little Xavier. She sniffed him curiously, and as the Riolu noticed her, she bounced back, her butt in the air and tail wagging playfully.

    It was like whatever had happened here either completely went over the Poochyena's head, or this was her way of coping. Either way - Farid shuddered. He couldn't bear to think what would happen if his own pups were captured and morphed into these... these...

    "If we're quick, or lucky, or something, maybe we can find the assholes who did this. Or even their hideout." Farid's fists dropped to his side, trembling almost violently. "If the other cities haven't been hit the way Silverton was, then that means whoever's behind this should still be nearby, shouldn't they?"

    The gym leader shrugged, already beginning to walk off. "If they haven't already fled, that is."

    With the water trainers all dispersed, Zeke and Farid were left with themselves and their Pokemon. The gym leader had enough resources to keep the rest of the town occupied with tasks, whether it be assisting other trainers, rebuilding what's been broken, contacting nearby towns, scouting for further suspicious activities, or as Zeke suggested, gathering Pokeballs. The leader left information about a professor in a neighboring town, if they wanted more help and information about what transpired, so they could better understand what was going on. Farid, on the other hand, still fumed over the idea that the one or ones behind this could still be lingering around, uncaught.

    The young man looked back to Zeke, shoving his fists into his hoodie's pocket. His voice still shook from his building anger. "I think we should probably tackle this thing together, since we've gotten this far. I'm not... I'm not really good with these kinds of things, so I'll do whatever you want to do."
     
    #9 Rexcalibur, Dec 17, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2014
  10. [​IMG]

    Vault City? Zeke scratched his head tentatively; he had a lot to learn about Ellenses. He appreciated the gym leader's help nonetheless. He rested his hands atop his head and let out a long sigh. He looked around at the pause in conversation, scuffing his shoe across the ground as he examined the city of Silverton. He'd gotten no more than a few minutes of peace since arriving here... It was so beautiful... But now? It was in ruins. The architecture he'd heard rumours about was reduced to rubble for many of the buildings, the materials which once shone brightly in the sunlight were scattered all over the road, the mutated Pokemon dotted the streets and people were being gradually woken up and trying to cope with what they just saw. An entire city overrun in such a short amount of time... Maybe, if it wasn't so early in the morning on such a slow day, the entire town would have been ready to defend or stop the attackers... But alas, there was nothing they could do but rebuild or leave. It was disheartening, to say the least. Zeke turned three hundred and sixty full degrees, taking in everything, trying to imagine how it was no more than a couple of hours ago, just before the sun rose, with the moon floating low and pale in the opposite direction. The pure buildings of white and chrome shining even in the darkness as its residents slept soundly. Maybe some places were untouched, some families still uninformed. He liked to think so, even if it was entirely false. He looked down as Xavier held tightly to his leg, avoiding the curious Poochyena that was investigating his very existence.

    [​IMG]
    The Riolu growled in response, falling to all fours as the small pup waggled its bum. Xavier boujnced around playfully before tackling and rolling about with the Poochyena. Zeke merely shook his head and covered his face, "Kids will be kids, I suppose... Anyway, thanks," He said to the gym leader, offering his hand. They shook and he glanced to Farid.

    "Well... As much as I'd like to stay and help... Or hunt down whatever did this - we need to find out exactly what happened to them, before we find out who we hold responsible... And even then, Java is a powerhouse, but I'm not strong enough as a trainer to take on anybody who has a team with any real merit to it, you know? I've never been much of a fighter, after all," He shrugged and rubbed the back of his neck. "Vault City sounds like a really interesting place too, so I think I'd love to see it. I'm game for sticking together, traveling is always better with somebody to talk to."

    Zeke readjusted the straps over his shoulders and looked around, "So... I'm ready to go... As much as I would have liked to see Silverton, I think we really should get going. I don't really keep extra PokeBalls on me, if you wanna catch one of them and take it along, I'm sure the professor would find it helpful." He suggested, "I don't really know which way we're going, though..." Zeke crossed his arms and, once again, looked around, unsure of which direction to take exactly. Before they left, he'd make sure to withdraw both Fang and Java, so as to not tire them out with the travel too much.​
     
  11. [​IMG]

    Farid nodded to Zeke's suggestion. He too, however, was without Pokéballs, so the two swung by the Pokémart on their way out of town. Surprisingly, it was one of the buildings completely in tact, and it bustled with shoppers crowding the potions. It wasn't hard to guess why. After shoppers grabbed enough medicine for themselves, they dashed outside the shop without payment.

    Once there was an opening, he dashed right in and towards the counter, leaving his canines outside with Zeke. Immediately the clerk directed him to the potions where everyone else was. Farid corrected him, saying he was in need of a Pokéball - just one - and the clerk handed him a whole bag. "Take it. Free of charge."
    [​IMG]

    Farid re-emerged from the shop, splitting the Pokéballs between himself and Zeke. "...nineteen. Twenty. So that makes ten each for us. Nice of them to give these away for free." He looked to his stash before shoving them inside his backpack. "I know we're not going out there to catch Pokémon or anything, but it doesn't hurt to have extras, I guess."

    They moved on. Just outside the entrance to Route 17 lied one helpless hybrid Pokemon, separate from the rest. Its body heaved, shakily, with muffled moans. It was in the shape of an Oddish, but faced down. Decaying leaves replaced its usual healthy green. Twitching his ears, Mighty wandered over to it and sniffed at the being, before nudging it with his nose to push it over and onto its back.
    [​IMG]
    Farid nearly screamed at the sight - the poor critter had been fused with a Golbat, or at least the mouth of one. "Arceus," he cursed, pulling out a Pokéball. "I think I'm going to puke."

    Without wasting a second further, Farid cast the ball at the sleeping creature, instantly ensnaring it within a bright red light. The ball merely fell to the ground afterwards and pinged... a confirmed catch. He just stood there, staring at it, expecting it to erupt or combust or something. These weren't normal Pokémon - and yet, the Pokéball reacted as such. With shaky palms, Farid carefully retrieved it in both hands. He looked to Zeke for a second and, with a gulp, pocketed it.

    "Heh... look at that. My very first catch."
    [​IMG]
    Route 17 was just ahead of them. It was paved nicely, offering a single path to its walkers for an easy reach to Vault City, although trainers could easily brush through the trees and into the wildlife if they wanted to. Trees overhead offered a cooling shade to the walkers beneath. The hustle and bustle of lingering wild Pokémon emanated from all directions within the route, including birds and bugs flapping overhead as the boys drew near.

    Farid's voice shook as he spoke, though he tried hard to overcome it. "Vault City basically patronizes all its connecting routes. That town, is Ellenses' focus for manufacturing and distributing Pokédollars - it can afford, to furnish a few routes." He stepped to the side, motioning with his hand for Zeke to enter first. With his other hand, he wiped the sweat from his forehead. "After you."​
     
    #11 Rexcalibur, Dec 21, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
  12. [​IMG]

    Zeke nodded and gave Farid a thumbs-up when he re-emerged from the store with twenty new PokeBalls. "Well I'm glad they were willing to part with 'em," He said, rubbing the back of his neck as he tucked his own ten balls away. It was so crowded in there that he'd decided to stay out in front of the store, waiting for his new traveling partner. Xavier stood at his side, a bundle of energy - could this Riolu be more inconsistent with his fatigue style..? The trainer shrugged and stretched out passively for a moment before cracking his knuckles. "Let's walk," He said, joining Farid as they headed for the gate and stepped onto the cleanly paved path of Route 17.

    "Wow, this is nice," He pointed out, looking at the trees lining the road. "They worked real hard on this one; most towns and roads in Hoenn are extremely natural. Back home, everybody tries to keep from imposing on the surroundings habitats... Lately, though, there's been a lot of expansion... Mauville City has gotten huge in the last few years and Lilycove hasn't gotten smaller. Thankfully, places like Petalburg have stayed... the... sa- oh, holy mother of..." He started looking down and covering his eyes for a moment as the Oddish was turned over. Xavier was far from curious on this one, the Riolu looked away as well, whining slightly.

    "Just... Just no, catch it, please," He suggested, looking with disgust at the poor, hybrid creature. After the ball pinged, he clapped Farid's shoulder, "Uh... heh... Good job, I guess? Sorry it's a bit anti-climactic. Java's still my only direct catch, Fang was a rescue and Xavier was a hatchling. Huh, buddy?" He proposed, patting the Riolu's head with a grin. Zeke started walking at Farid's offer, hands in his pockets while he was given the rundown on Vault City trivia.

    "Really? Hm... That's the first I've ever heard of a place that prints the PokeDollars... I mean, I've always known they have the printers specially made, but I don't honestly know where they are in any of the regions I've been to."

    The traveler's fingers gently pinched leaves now and then, plucking a few as they walked by the trees. He carefully examined each one, as though he'd never actually seen a leaf before. Of course he'd seen countless leaves, but every now and then he liked to take a moment and just take a closer look at the little things.

    "So, how far is the walk?"​
     
    • Like Like x 1
  13. [​IMG]

    Farid shrugged at Zeke's comments on Pokédollar printers. "I guess that makes sense. You wouldn't want goonies hijacking your nation's bank, right?" He chuckled nervously. "I guess you haven't seen much of Ellenses yet. We don't have any fancy stories here, but man, this half of the region is grossly rich. Our scientists, professors, and intellectual nutcases don't hold back on their research. It's all Ellenses has going for it." He sighed, burying his hands in his sweater pocket. "It gets to their heads sometimes... I mean... I don't know what else would explain what happened back in Silverton."

    Aside from the occasional breeze brushing along the trees and the banter between the boys, the route became oddly quiet. No more rustling between the trees nor in the bushes, the grass, or scampering along the ground. Here and there Farid would glance to the streetlamps, expecting to see a Natu or Mothim perched - but there was nothing.

    "This is weird," Farid commented, also taking a closer look at his surroundings the way Zeke did. The leaves he examined earlier - they were freshly bitten, perhaps by Caterpie or Wurmples. And yet it was like they all took cover once the boys made their entrance. "I like to take Mighty and Coco for jogs down this road. We'd get chased a lot. This is... uncharacteristic." He glanced to Zeke, eyebrows perplexed. "If it keeps up like this, we should make it down to Vault City before noon."

    They pressed forward, observing the scenery some more. At this point, even Coco mimicked her trainer's curiosity and began sniffing around the low wire fences and abandoned tree trunks. Mighty on the other hand continued marching with a bland expression - that was, until he stopped, his nose in the air. Farid looked back to him, then followed his eyes skyward.

    A cluster of Metapods hung from the treetops overhead, dangling on their threads. At first Farid smiled - but then they suddenly rescinded back into the trees and out of sight. He twitched his lips. "It's like they're scared or something."
     
    #13 Rexcalibur, Jan 2, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2015
  14. [​IMG]

    "Sounds like a plan. We can grab some brunch when we get there," He noted, smiling sheepishly as he placed a hand over his empty stomach. Now that the action was over, he realized he hadn't eaten since before he arrived in Silverton just this morning. "I can wait a couple of hours though... No doubt I'll Tepig out when we get there. Let's hope they've got some good eats." The leaves rustled as a gentle breeze floated over them, but Zeke's senses still snapped his vision to the side, hand at his hip, reaching for a PokeBall. "Arceus... This place is just giving me the creeps now..."

    The lack of wild Pokemon was certainly an unnerving point. In a burst of light, he released Java and returned her capsule to his belt. "Keep an eye above and around us... Something feels wrong." He explained. Java responded with a coo and launched herself into the sky, her vibrant green and red wings making her easy to spot, even from the ground. Xavier had decided to join Coco again, investigating like the little sleuths they were. Zeke only really took notice when Farid's Mightyena grew tense and sniffed about. "What is it?" he asked Farid, wondering if the trainer could shed some light. It didn't matter - they soon saw the Metapod and Zeke sighed in relief. "Oh finally... A Pokemon that hasn't been muta- hey, wait! Where are you..?" But they were already gone.

    "I'd be pretty scared too. You saw that Oddish, it means that whatever those Pokemon were before, they came through here. Which means everything living around here had to deal with what we did... The environment was jacked all too hell. These poor guys are probably just dealing with what they witnessed... It's awful. Let's keep walking, we aren't PokeTherapists," He joked. "I don't have the certifications required to handle the problems of these little guys."

    Zeke's hands returned to his pockets as he relaxed. With Java overhead, he didn't have to worry as much about being attacked or having something jump out at them. Still, after everything that they just saw, it was hard to completely let yourself calm down.​
     
  15. [​IMG]

    Farid sighed. The monsters did come in from various directions; he just didn't want to believe they were as spread out as they were. Anything that would make whoever was responsible easier to catch was nicer to think about. As Zeke mentioned the Oddish from earlier, Farid pulled its Pokéball from his pocket. He eyed it for a bit before tossing it up and catching it a few times like it was nothing special. "Well... better scared than angry, right?" Farid shrugged, looking away. Definitely trying to play it cool, but quivering all the while.

    As they ventured deeper into Route 17, more snapped trees and other shredded parts of the environment became clear. Zeke's suspicions were right. Though they seemed to be concentrated deeper in the forest - or at least, not as much damage was spotted around the paved or fenced off areas. Luckily the further they trekked, the less the calamity. It wasn't long before the hustle and bustle of Vault City was within earshot - and no screams either. Farid wasted no time speed-walking to get there; the eerie silence was starting to bug him.

    [​IMG]
    The city was decked with lofty towers, extravagant designs, and richly decorated streets. Even the fences and lamplights seemed to glimmer with silver in the dawning sun. Silverton was well-furnished enough, but Vault City was enough to make Farid feel almost out of place. At the very least it was nice not to see any buildings destroyed and citizens flipping their shit... ... ...well, the latter seemed to prove itself almost immediately. A trenchcoated socialite nearly trampled over Farid in her rush to get to who knows where. Further into the city, the rush was just as apparent.

    "Huh... I guess they heard the news." Farid looked to Zeke, brow raised with a wry smile. That or it was a bunch of busybodies freaking out over work and late from their lunch break. From the eavesdropping, it seemed to be a mix of both, but mostly the latter. News travels quick, but not that quick.

    Among the cluster of glorious buildings lingered a tower as white as ivory, with a huge dome as its roof. "That's gotta be the lab," Farid nodded. With the ball in hand, ready, he--
    [​IMG]

    "EeeEEeeEeeErrrdisheeeer!"

    Ungracefully, the hybrid Pokémon released itself from the ball (thankfully without breaking it) and dashed off down the busy streets. Luckily it was small enough to avoid being noticed, yet agile enough to avoid being trampled upon... as well as to dash out of sight.

    "Oh, no... no, no, no, no, no," Farid jittered, nearly chewing off his fingernails in suspense. "Mighty, track it! Hurry!" His canine barked back affirmatively and dashed into the crowd as well, pushing through the bodies that didn't move out the way in time. Multiple alleyways were up ahead, so the Mightyena dashed into the nearest one.​
     
  16. [​IMG]
    Once inside the city, Zeke looked at the tall buildings in awe. It was so pristine. His gaze turned back behind him to the path which they came from. They'd been walking for quite a long time, so it was good to finally be here. The streets were stuffed with people, unlike Silverton's broad early morning roads and midday destruction. Everything pointed to this being one of the wealthiest city's that Zeke had ever seen... It felt like each edifice punctured the sky like a syringe, as though they were trying to reach Heaven itself by towering so high. Zeke was surprised that there wasn't a single jumbotron playing a new broadcast of what happened in Silverton... Maybe they were pushing the media out until the city could clean up and send the report out. Wouldn't it be best to get word spread out so that they could get more help and warn the neighbouring towns?

    "That's... the lab..?" He asked, gazing at the spectacle. "I guess now I understand why they use the expression 'ivory towers...' But geeze this is ridiculous, in Hoenn, our lab is in the smallest town in the entire region. It's the same with most places I've been - they always plop down in little villages to keep from being flooded by locals and whatnot..." He mused, rubbing the back of his neck, "Impressive, I admit. Shall we g-" He started before the Oddish broke free of its ball. "You're kidding - seriously? Come on..." He groaned as Mighty took off after it. "You take care of that - I'm actually going to get some food!" He called as Farid ran off, "I haven't eaten this morning. Meet you back here in like... an hour, kay?" Aaaannnd the other guy was gone. Zeke looked around, deciding where to start with his hunt for food.

    "Where to go, where to go..." He muttered to himself, looking at all the different signs on buildings and deliberating exactly what kind of food he actually wanted. Xavier rested on the boy's shoulder, pointing every which way at different places. Clearly, the little Pokemon was hungry as well.
    Annabelle Parish (open)
    [​IMG] Click for full resolution.

    "You look awfully lost!" A voice chirped from behind Zeke. Chirped was really the only word which he could use to describe her sing-song attitude as she ran up beside him, looking him over curiously. Short purple hair and an impossibly adorable look on her face caused the trainer to stop dead in his tracks for a moment.

    "Uh... Oh, yeah, I guess... I'm new around here... Sorry but who are you?" He asked as Xavier leaned forward, barely able to keep his balance from his perch as he tried to investigate the girl.

    "Ohh, hey there cutie," She cooed, scratching the Riolu under the chin, much to his delight.

    "That's Xavier," Zeke answered, sighing, "Again... I hate to be rude here, but who are you?"

    "Annabelle. I grew up here. What were you looking for? I saw you staring at the lab and then your friend dashed off and you seem lost all of a sudden. So I was wondering what you were looking for," She explained matter-of-factly, a bubbly grin on her face as he hands clasped one another behind her back. Now that Zeke saw her properly and they started walking again. He noticed now that she had a perfectly clean, expensive looking white hoodie which appeared at least a size too big over her black blouse. The sleeves of the hoodie reached her palms and she wore a pair of short jean shorts with white and blue running shoes and high socks. A ring dangled from a gold chain around her neck; she looked at him with amethyst eyes.

    This chick was right to the point... He tried to see if she had any pokeballs on her, but the blouse hung low enough to cover any kind of belt she would be wearing. However, it didn't take long for him to notice two figures low and at her sides - one dark with yellow rings adorning its body and the other a soft pink-purple, a gem encrusted to its forehead. Two... Nay, three tails flicked through the air. Zeke crouched down as the Umbreon and Espeon pair closed in on him and Xavier, who hopped off of his shoulder. "Okay, Annabelle... I was on my way to find some food, you wanna help me out?" He asked, taking off his fleece as he realized the day had warmed up quite a bit. He tucked it inside of his duffel bag and then stuffed his hands into his jean pockets. Xavier played with the two former-Eevees as they walked. Anna finally pointed out a sandwich shop that she said was particularly great. One grilled sandwich each and some Pokemon food later, Zeke and Annabelle started for the lab again.

    "So, what brings you to Vault City?" She asked - they'd shared some basic information over lunch, but Zeke had been so hungry that spent more time eating and listening to Annabelle than speaking. She was born and raised here, but had done some traveling, did quite well with the region's Gym Challenge, and decided to come home for a while. Umbreon, Ebony, and her Espeon, Ivory, were twin female Eevee when she got them. They were her first Pokemon and they evolved on the same day, one just before the sun went down and the other only hours later when the moon had risen.

    The boy shrugged, "We were in Silverton this morning... But... there's been some accident, so Farid and I came by to talk to the professor about it. I can't believe it's not on the news yet, it's awful..." He shook his head, "If you could see what happened... it wasn't pretty, to say the least," He pointed out, shaking his head again. "It's about time to meet Farid, do you wanna... hang with us for a bit or anything?" He asked as they neared the lab.

    "I'd be happy to. Life gets so boring around here sometimes and I was wondering what I was gonna do next, so I'll fill the day with you guys!" She said brightly, seeming to bounce a little bit as she spoke. Finally, they were at the doors to the lab.

    Zeke laughed, "Dear god, I hope he caught up to that thing in time... Did you see him go running after it?"

    "Yeah, but I didn't see what it was... Hope everything's okay," Annabelle noted as they waited by the doors.​
     
  17. [​IMG]

    Not too long after Zeke and Annabelle arrived at the laboratory, Farid finally showed up. He was panting wildly and leaned forward upon reaching the steps, his hands gripping his frail knees. Mighty stood beside him, panting as well, albeit more happily. The hooded young man lifted up his hand briefly, a sign that he was okay and just catching his breath. Sure enough, he straightened his back again and sighed loudly.

    "Oh man, Mighty. We need to get back in shape." Farid looked between his Mightyena and Zeke with a smile. "Anyway. We got the little guy before he could cause any real trouble and I-- oh, uhhh. Hi!" Farid's genuine smile suddenly twisted awry. It was as if he didn't know how to talk to girls from the looks of it; even Mighty rolled his eyes. "Who are you?" His eyes flitted back to Zeke. "You didn't tell me you had friends down this way... I mean, well, not that it mattered really, or anything, uh."

    Once introductions and formalities were out of the way (including both Mighty and Coco introducing themselves to Annabelle via sniffing her legs in circles), Farid did the honors of knocking on the laboratory's door. And again. And again. Finally the door peeled open, but it didn't seem like anyone had actually answered it.

    At least, not until they looked down.

    [​IMG]

    A bug-eyed spherical bird greeted them from near ground-level. It was quite bright and sunny outside, so the little Hoothoot remained in the shade of the doorway, looking up at the three trainers before him. He hooted. And hooted again.

    "Uhh... hi there. Can we come inside?"

    The bird cocked his head in response. Farid knelt down to his level and reached out to pet him, but the bird bounced back and hooted again.

    Another voice called from inside the lab - "Oh come now, Sniu. Let them in, let them in." - followed by a sneeze and sniffled. After a brief hesitation, the trio entered the lab. Where there would usually be a lobby for such vast buildings as this one, the first room was already a lab room in of itself. Various white coats flocked back and forth between counters situated against the walls, while others probed at... things... atop their bland tables.

    The Hoothoot bounced his way to one particular counter, where his owner worked alone. Standing on a stool. She sneezed again upon the ball-owl's presence, and turned to meet the trio. Unlike the other workers, this little lady's lab coat was more of a black cloak - obviously to distinguish her from the rest of the other workers.

    So she was the professor they sought help from. A short young woman with a bob cut hairstyle, who couldn't be older than Zeke or Farid. Atop the counter now behind her were two humming Litwicks, keeping the workplace well lit, and one Lampent wandering the air above them all.

    [​IMG]

    With a snivel, the young lady straightened her back, tutted her head, and pushed up her thickly framed circular glasses - just like the eyes of her Hoothoot. "I am Exandra, the Exandra of Vault City. But! You may refer to me as Professor." She looked away for a moment and sneezed; her entire body basically convulsed as she did. "Now. What brings you into my laboratory today, hmmmm?"

    "Well..." Farid started, avoiding eye contact with everyone. "We were in Silverton this morning, and--"

    "Yes, yes, I know of the circumstances that have befallen Silverton. What is it that you want here? I don't quite"--she sneezed--"have all day to splurge." She had a tendency to stretch out her 'u's for longer than necessary.

    Farid looked to her before turning his attention to Zeke, hoping to let him do all the talking as he didn't trust himself not to go into good enough details. Then he released the Oddish hybrid from its ball, right onto the floor. The creature laid motionlessly - almost, save for its uneven breathing and strange whirring noise that could only be its form of snoring.

    Everyone in the room stopped what they were doing.
     
  18. [​IMG]
    "Hi there!" Annabelle said chipperly to Farid as he arrived and attempted to catch his breath. "I'm Annabelle - you guys can really call me anything as long as it isn't mean," She admitted with a shrug. "Anne, Annie, Belle... I've heard it all," She explained, looking the boy and his dog over. "Well, I find a nice run every day helps me keep my breath and my heart healthy." She crouched down and smiled brightly at Mighty, "Hey there, buddy... You're a fluffy guy, huh?" She cooed, scratching the canine's head while introductions went around.

    Zeke cleared his throat, "I, uh... don't. Not that I know of, at least... I just met her when you ran off to chase down our little uh... project. I hope you didn't create too big a ruckus," He chided, crossing his arms with a smirk. "So, Annabelle, how many Pokemon do you have? You never said," He asked curiously. The girl looked up, hesitating uneasily for a moment.

    "Uh... A few, I guess..." She said, shrugging the question off almost entirely, trying not to make it obvious that she wasn't being entirely truthful. "Like I said, got through some of the gyms around our region here."

    Finally, they were knocking on the lab door as the topic was dropped quite quickly. Ebony and Ivory spent some time sniffing about Mighty as they waited for a reply at the door. Slowly it opened and Annabelle smiled brightly at the Hoothoot that answered it, she put a finger to her lips, winking at the small owl. Of course, Sniu was not likely to understand, but it was also not very likely to say anything about her. They all stepped inside and Annabelle rolled her eyes - they were always so stressed and busy in here... It was stuffy and just too scientific for her tastes.

    Zeke, meanwhile, was drinking it in. "Whoa... It's a lab even at the entrance? How does anybody keep track with all these floors?" He asked to nobody in particular, craning his neck around. Xavier was fascinated too, making little noises at all of the bustling white coats with wide eyes. As they approached the counter with the youngest scientist Zeke had ever seen, he noticed that Annabelle vanished... She was just there. He furrowed his brow, but decided to let it slide. Maybe this just wasn't her favorite place - she was a bit unpredictable he could already tell so if she was tired to hanging out with them, then it wouldn't be ridiculous for her to just leave and chase something shiny. This suspicion did not last long, however.

    Behind "The Exandra," Annabelle seemed to reappear. It was now that Zeke noticed that they looked eerily similar. He snerked, trying not to make himself too obvious with the laughter as the girl began to lip-sync Exandra's every word. Was this how the professor introduced herself to everybody? It wasn't long before Zeke and Xavier were covering their mouths, physically trembling as they tried not to laugh out loud. Annabelle mimicked the sneeze whenever it came and Zeke had to actually turn away to avoid laughing. Were they sisters..?

    Finally, Annabelle revealed herself to Exandra, putting an arm around her shoulder with a big grin on her face. "Yeah, boys, little sis here doesn't have all day!" She teased with a pouting lip. "Wait... what happened in Silverton today..?" She asked, surprised that her baby sister actually knew more than her as she simultaneously brushed off the significance of their kinship, which seemed to surprise Zeke well enough at first.

    Zeke sort of shifted on his feet uncomfortably, "Er... Well..." He glanced to Farid, shrugging, "Just brace yourself, Anna," he warned as the Oddish was released. The girl physically cringed, stumbling back a few steps as she covered her mouth, instantly almost in tears.

    "Oh Arceus... No..." She started, unable to put her thoughts into words before she ran forward and fell to the ground, putting her arms around the snoozing Pokemon hybrid. "you poor thing..." The girl softly murmured, stroking its droopy, ill leaves tenderly. She exuded warmth and comfort, it seemed, even making the hideous creature appear frail and in need of sympathy rather than monstrous intent. Zeke's heart actually throbbed for a moment at her compassion, a small smile meeting his face.

    "At least she took it well..." He pointed out to Frid, finally looking to Exandra. "We had to catch one so that we could show you what we'd seen... There were a lot of different species, but this was the one we caught when we found it on the way here. We were just wondering if you could shed some light on it.​
     
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    Exandra merely rolled her eyes behind her bug-eyed glasses as Annabelle did her mockery. She couldn't see her sister behind her, but this was something that had become custom. She didn't even try to stop her, much less chide her afterwards. It would be of no use. Farid, meanwhile, watched with perplexed brows, much too confused to laugh unlike the others.

    Nonetheless, the emergence of the Oddish hybrid cut off all joviality. Exandra stared at the creature with wide eyes, her glasses slowly sliding down her nose as time passed by. Only when they were inches away from popping off her nose did she finally push them all the way back up to her eyes. However she had done so with what looked like renewed enthusiasm.

    "Oh... oh, yes! Yes! What a spectacular...!" She couldn't even grasp her words. With her hands out and trembling, she stepped down from her stool and towards the creature lying atop the floor before her. Almost pushing her sister aside, Exandra dropped to her knees and hovered her hands around its figure. "What... what marvelous work of..." Finally she worked up the courage to brush her hands along its brazen skin. While Annabelle stroked the hybrid like an injured kitten, Exandra stroked it as one would a valuable statue.

    Now cradling the hybrid, Exandra rose to her feet, eyes shooting towards the boys. Still as a statue, she listened intently as Zeke gave his explanation. With every word, her smile grew. "Astounding, simply astounding," she said as he finished. Exandra then began to hobble off towards the staircase situated at the back of the room. As she walked on - "BACK TO WORK, YOU MONGRELS. I DON'T PAY YOU TO LOAF ABOUT." - the surrounding scientists scrambled for their tools and work. Like a fledgling she took two steps per step, thereby ascending pretty slowly.
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    Obviously disturbed by the little lady's reaction, Farid stepped back from her and coughed into his fist. "I guess we should follow her?"

    The decision was unanimous, and the trio and their Pokémon inside followed suit. Farid nodded to his canine outside, giving him permission to wait there; he was never much for stuffy buildings. As they exited the staircase - four whole flights when they could've taken the elevator - they were met with a large aquarium just a few feet from the doorway.
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    A Carvanha stared back, as still as the startled Farid. From the far end of the new room, Exandra called to them - "Oh, don't worry about Mandy! She abhors the taste of human flesh." Farid chuckled nervously to himself as he walked around the watery cage to meet with the professor. Mandible. Mandy. Haha. Got it.

    Exandra, standing on yet another stool, wasted no time in having the Oddish examined. It was placed under what Farid could only guess was a large scanner, but he was as technologically inept as people could be, so all its parts made zero sense to him. A bright blue light hummed from beneath and behind the snoozing Oddish hybrid.

    Above Exandra hovered one large screen, with multiple smaller screens connected at its sides. The Oddish's skeleton displayed in the center, while other parts of it - the leaves, teeth, tongue, feet, skin color, skin texture, and the like - all had their own littler screens, with gibberish littered in every corner.

    The professor whirled around to face the trio, with an elated expression. Like she was on drugs for the first time. "Tell me more. Tell me more about these creatures, how they acted, how they... fought. What attacks they knew, where they came from, how they interacted with each other." She sneezed and pushed her glasses back up. "All for research, of course. This information is essential if I am to assist you in..."

    Until one of them cut her off, Exandra continued to babble on with pressing questions and high-end vocabulary.​
     
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    Annabelle pulled one of her eyelids down and stuck her tongue out at her sister for a moment, just after the Oddish was taken from her. However, as they headed for the stairs, Exandra yelled at her colleagues to get back to work. The purple-haired trainer, on the other hand, gave them all a pleasant smile while her sister's back was turned and shot a thumbs-up to everybody on the floor, letting them know they should take it easy. Annabelle had just as much power as her younger sister in the lab, even if she wasn't a genius. Ebony and Ivory strode beside her with perfect confidence and impeccable posture; it was undeniable how well-trained they were. In fact, Zeke had to wonder what kind of training they had... were they just her domestic companions? Who was she exactly? Of course, they'd talked already, but there was a whole new layer here with the laboratory and tower.

    "Hey there, Mandy!" She chirped brightly at the aquarium once they made it up the stairs, a bright smile on her face as she waved to the Carvanha cutely. She looked to Farid, "Pft, she's a sweetie. Exandra's just a hard-ass over dumb stuff," She teased, dismissing the comment her sister had made.
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    Zeke studied the Carvanha even after the others had walked away. "Have to love the water, huh?" He asked the fish, his hands stuffed into his pockets. A few moments later, he started back for the group, "Hey, why's she in the aquarium here? The ocean's not too far away - is she a subject?" He asked curiously, rocking on his heels as the Oddish was placed in some kind of scanning device. "And sorry, we don't have much information... It didn't take that long before Java, my Flygon, helped get a mass Hypnosis out to the assaulting hybrids," He reported, "But I did notice a couple of things..."

    It didn't take very long for him to explain and describe the different moves he saw and retaliated with, his memory was fairly good, so he shared whatever he could. After recounting that morning's events, Annabelle gave a bit of input on the tactics and patterns in the attacks that Zeke had shared.

    Meanwhile, Xavier was running about the lab with surprising agility. Despite his youth, he was good on his legs, and for some reason he was oddly attached to running on all four legs, rather than the typical bipedal stance of his form and his evolved one. Perhaps he was imitating what he'd seen other Pokemon doing, seeing as he'd never really come in contact with other Riolu and many of the Pokemon, including Farid's, were mostly quadrupedal.​
     
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