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Old 05-23-2005, 05:37 PM   #121
Aipom Of Doom
is in static equilibrium
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lady Vulpix
May and Blaze can have 16 stamps for their return story, but I'm still wondering how they could make everyone understand what they said. And May seems to be turning into quite a dangerous character! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢[/color]

Blaze: Yay, stamps . And if we've found that most people are capable of understanding at least some Pokemon-talk, and if we make lots of gestures too we can usually get our point across well.

May: hehe, I AM very dangerous . Especially to bad guys, hopefully ^_^.
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Old 05-24-2005, 01:24 PM   #122
Charizard04621
Lune
 
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Gabi, if you haven't started one of the stories yet, tell me which and I can rate it. ^_^ I don't want to read it before you and hand out stamps if you're already in the middle of it and have something in mind, though, because that could be annoying.

Anyway, here's my story, finally. >_< Sorry it took so long.

My POV:

It had all been leading up to this. I ran my fingers slowly over the pendant that I clasped in my hand, feeling the warmth urge me to leave, to fight, to do something. Sadly, I’d gotten to the point where the power had no effect on me anymore. Whether it was sadness, or pain, or perhaps what happened when one grew weary, I knew I needed something more than magic to put my heart into it again. And that would not come.

“Having second doubts about your position?”

I gazed at the Eevee through shineless eyes, the answers to his inquiry. What did I do for these people? What did I do at all that was helpful? It was futile, this endeavor, my personal battle against an unseen but omnipresent enemy. How was it that I helped them? By getting captured and forcing them to come to the rescue?

“Lune, why do we fight?”

“To win.”

“And what do we win? What are we fighting for?”

At this, he was silent. There was no answer.

“I thought as much.”

The dragon’s eyes flared, bathing its cold silver skin with red light. Chanting, go, get up, get a hold of yourself, fight. I could hear the unspoken plea resonate in my head.

But fight for what? Would there ever be an end? To the violence, the destruction, the battles upon battles that were supposed to help but did nothing, only became another part of the war. It wasn’t even a straight war. Half the time our enemy changed, transformed from one thing to another without explanation, attacking for no reason, destroying without sense. The only thing our assailants bore in common was the enveloping mask of evil. Of hate.

“All the same, I wouldn’t make a hasty judgment, if I were you,” Lune cautioned. “They could need you for reasons that we don’t quite understand. Even if you feel useless, I doubt that you are so. You have a lot of strength.” At this, he smiled, a sad smile as always because the sadness had never left his eyes. Still, it was sincere, and I saw the light in his eyes that had been there of late, with the help of his beloved Rúthruin.

“The answer will come,” I sighed, and hoped that I was right.

“Ryu”, the male Vibrava’s POV

The horn of war had sounded. The tides of battle would come. I shifted in my perch, clinging tightly as the tree branch swayed from my movement. Above, the great giver of light was slowly withdrawing its generosity, fading into the shadow. Soon the mountains would claim the bright sun, leaving an echo of its red, haunting glow across the lands. The smoky clouds would be its emissary, spreading its eerie fire slowly through the sky.

At what cost must we watch these lands descend into sorrow? The wind seemed to whisper the answer, but I could not hear; I was not sure that I wanted to hear. Surely, it would be the dearest price – we were the final defense, the final barrier to the shadow. If we fell, no light would bless our world again. I shuddered at the thought.

Gazing into the distance, I could discern a vague change in the sky as the falling star faded into darkness. Long had it been since I’d seen a sea of glorious gold. Of late, the rays had turned far more sinister. It was a cold glow, a sort of yellow melded with pale, dead gold – with a touch of red the color of blood. What was it that nature was trying to foreshadow? Could it be our doom?

The rain had fallen earlier this day, heavy rain with angry bolts of lightning and thunderous roars. I suspected it was an attempt to purge the land of its evil. And what was this scourge? Some said it was a select group of people – a trained elite born for wreaking havoc – but I did not believe it. No, I knew what the true enemy was, a foul thing more dangerous than a group of bloodthirsty humans could ever be. I feared it because it could overcome anyone, at any instant; we were all at risk. Our undying enemy was greed.

Shar, the female Absol’s POV

He said that I was not cursed.

“Please trust me when I say this – I come as your friend. I bear no ill will to you, nor, do I hope, you to me. This revenge you seek – you direct it in another way. We did not steal you from your master; it was not for us that you were lost. I saw it all myself. I was there in that horrid snowstorm, and that wretch who took you, whom you saw as your trainer, had in fact kidnapped you. You were born here somewhere in this land of Ulthuan. The Dragon Tamer headquarters is your home. Your father is near; if it pleases your heart to discover him, you can find your true family.”

But who was he to trust? He was just like any of the others, bound to this trainer of warriors who had fighting in their blood. One story was no different from the other; everything I’d ever heard could be false, and I would know no better. I would have to be cautious.

Yet, if what he said was true – if my descent really lay in one close by – I had no quarrel with him or any of the others. As for finding my predecessors, for matters other than confirmation I was not keen. I had suffered too much hatred to know their love.

My prison lay before me, my indestructible, deplorable prison. It was marked different from the others, a sign of my curse, another scar of my wretchedness. While the others were blood red, mine was a sickly purple – the color of bruises. How ironically appropriate to match my beaten soul. I had never known love, nor kindness. They shunned me, swore at me, threatened me if I came near. Even if they did not make it obvious, I could see it in their eyes. They looked at me differently. With hate.

Hate bred hate, and more hate – I had no love of them, and I would continue to impose upon them the torment that they forced onto me.

Rúthruin, the female Scyther’s POV:

“What troubles you, my love?”

I turned my watch away from the full, bright moon, gazing into Lune’s even deeper eyes. The dark night around us lay heavily upon my heart. Unlike him, I was not comfortable under these shadowy, starless nights. To me, stars were the heralds of hope, and tonight, as on many nights before, I saw no little glimmers, no silvery speckles across the sky. It was an ill omen.

“Something… is not right. I feel evil close ahead, Lune.”

Despite my tenseness, I felt my body loosen as the Eevee massaged my back with his gentle paws. He knew where his touch would ease my burden, and although my spirit remained uneasy, within a few moments I felt physically sound.

“Worry not, beloved; whatever happens, we will be prepared.”

I sighed. “I hope so. But this thing… It feels as if we will be challenged more than we have been before. I am afraid that it will be difficult to overcome.”

“Ruth, look at me.” We locked gazes, and his intense eyes burned deeply into mine, instilling hope into my reluctant heart. “Trust me, when this is over, everything will be all right, as it always has.”

We didn’t speak for some time; I found myself just gazing into those wells of hope and courage, drawing comfort from their fiery confidence. At length, I replied, “I believe you.”

My POV:

So night turns into day

“The call has been made. We are to direct our final defense – our intelligence shows that the Crimson Blades plan a dire attack on our citadel. We cannot allow Sector Alpha to fall! Another thing…” My face was grim as I eyed my team. They were all strong, but… “These – creatures – they’ve been tampered with and may have been granted… psychic powers. Each and every one of them.”

Nobody showed any visible fear, but I could tell that the message had been clear. These were no ordinary foes. We faced something deeper, more volatile, more dangerous than we’d previously experienced due to the sheer unpredictability that such latent powers caused.

“A small group will go on a stealth mission to Unicorn Gate, as there have been reports of suspicious activity there. We–” I turned to the pokémon assembled before me, all silent, grim, and prepared for the worst. “It is up to us to organize the defense. Whatever the Crimson Blades use in their assault, we must be ready. We can’t let anything take us by surprise.”

I looked at their faces, looked at each and every one of them to find what I tried to hide. To see if I was alone in my fear. Either they were good at concealing their thoughts, or they knew the cost of revealing such dangerous things. I believed that, like me, they were trying their best to cling on to hope.

“All right, then,” I nodded. “We’d best hurry. The attack could come at any moment, and I, for one, would rather be early than late.” Eleven beams of light converged upon my belt. My eye wandered to the two who had been absent from our gathering. Mandragora’s behavior was understandable – he spoke to no one and trembled in fear whenever he was exposed to the outside world – but Shar worried me.

The puzzle of the Absol had not really left my mind. I’d intended to pursue it, but hadn’t recently had the time. To whom did she belong? If she was the child of a pokémon here, why had no father surfaced to claim her? I could not understand; was I doing something wrong? Was I not doing enough? I’d left signs everywhere with her picture, stating all the facts I knew about her and the circumstances under which she was found. Yet, because she emerged only to create havoc and vanished soon after, I never found out much else about her. I hadn’t noticed any attack of hers that would distinguish her parents further; either she had none or had not revealed any.

Shar’s suffering was painful to me. I could sense that she felt terrible with us. I wanted to discover her past soon to end her agony, but nothing I did seemed to work. As each day passed, no clue came as to her identity. Yet I didn’t want to lose her, in case sometime we’d find her true place – the thought of misplacing her filled me with dread. I felt responsible somehow. What if, for some reason, I lost her pokéball while she was in it? What would she feel then, when she saw that we were gone? Betrayal? Would she think that we’d cast her away to die? This thought haunted me – I was so uncomfortable that I marked her pokéball specially so it would be easier to spot. My pokémon were capable of finding their way back to me and fending for themselves, but – Shar – despite her attitude of confidence, despite the twisted smirk on her face when she accomplished something, I felt that she was troubled inside.

***

When we arrived, many Dragon Tamers were already preparing for the assault. They were giving instructions to their pokémon, who looked just as frightened as their trainers. Yet we all knew that whatever came, we had to face it. There was no way out.

Dragon Tamer. That was a funny word. Not funny in the sense that it made you laugh – it was strange, rather – that is, I felt strange when I thought about it. Was I not a Dragon Tamer? Well, yes, but why did I hesitate when I thought of myself as one? I guessed the question was not was I, but rather should I be. Should I be one, considering that I had done nothing for them but require aid instead of helping. Or was it even something else? Was the question – did I want to be? I preferred not to think about it then; since I was here, my only task would be to protect Sector Alpha as best I could. So I would do it.

Aglárien, the female Charmeleon’s POV:

“What impeccable timing we have,” I said dully, watching the unchanging horizon. We had been waiting here for hours, just waiting, nothing else. At first I had felt a kind of rush, of not only excitement but a tingle of fear. As we waited, though, this feeling dimmed… and eventually waned into nothing. How could I be afraid of something that wasn’t there?

The others were quiet. Lune and Rúthruin had established a post to the west, while Switchblade and Evenstar had headed north. Gwaihir left with Ryu to patrol the eastern end of Sector Alpha while we sat here, at the main entrance. Elwing had gotten pretty restless too, but she said nothing and just kept watching the lack of movement in the distance, occasionally shifting uncomfortably. Naurmir, however, had stopped moving altogether. He kept a tense vigil on the fading sun with small, fearful eyes. I could feel his stiffness and it almost made me uneasy. Take heart, twin brother; I won’t let anything happen to you.

A change in the air made me alert. The Dratini had also sensed this; she turned her head quickly from side to side, trying to detect the cause of this shift. I couldn’t tell what had happened at first – then it occurred to me. The silence. It had begun.

As we were sitting before, there was a breeze, and now, nothing, as if nature was holding her breath. I spotted a glint of something before us, and suddenly, shadows – Elwing dashed to pursue some but I stayed still beside Naurmir, watching. When the Dratini disappeared, I heard a bloodthirsty battle cry and saw shapes emerge from the darkness. Beckoning for Naurmir to follow, I led us east towards Ryu and Gwaihir and Karin; we would be safest there.

Elwing Starspray, the female Dratini’s POV:

“So, you thought you could trap us, eh?”

His body was crushing mine, and for the first time since I remembered, I felt afraid. I’d followed the moving shadows, but I discovered that they were not what I wanted to catch up to. When they stopped so that I could see the Crimson Blade insignia on uniform, the Dragonair had wrapped around me so quickly that I hadn’t time to even scream.

“Pretty Dratini, why are you here?” he mocked me. “If it weren’t for your curiosity, you might still be safe. For the moment.” He squeezed harder. I wanted to cry for help, but he had bound me so that when I tried, not even a muffled plea came out. I was completely helpless. I saw the Dragonair’s trainer leave, and somehow, that made me feel worse – as if he knew what was going to happen next, and he was leaving his pokémon to do as he pleased.

“Stp-” I tried to say, “Plh dnt…”

He must have sensed my fear, because when I tried to beg him not to go on, he looked at me and laughed. “If you didn’t want me to do this, you would not have followed me,” he said, with danger in his eye. “Now, what did you say your name was?” He loosed his grip enough to allow me to speak.

“Why?” I gasped. “Why are you doing this? How could you have the heart to kill–”
The Dragonair began to openly cackle, no longer restraining his amusement. “Silly girl, I am not here to kill you.” His glinting eyes put a new chill into my heart. What could he mean? “I ask again, what is your name? Answer me, or this will hurt more than it has to.”

My eyes widened. “What are you going to do?”

“Answer!”

Instantly my body filled with pain, and when I realized that there was nothing I could do to stop what was coming and nobody was around to help me, I was so afraid that I felt all my blood leave my face. “Elwing…”

“Pretty name. It suits you.” He wrapped tighter around me and I collapsed into darkness.

“Ryu”, the male Vibrava’s POV:

They had come on us pretty quickly, and silently I hoped that the others were all right. While I faced the red glaring eyes, I prayed in my heart that my friends would not have to face such… horror. For that was what they struck in my soul, these two sets of cold, evil stones that just kept staring. They had created a dent in my spirit, and for a brief instant – I would not forgive myself – I was going to give up.

Yet, fading or not though my hope was, I could not, could not release it. No, hope was worth fighting for. “I won’t let you get by me,” I pronounced firmly. “You ghosts will not cause any harm!”

“Careful, Ryu, remember what they can do,” Karin cautioned. Beads of sweat formed on the back of my neck as I watched the two, trying to decide on my plan of approach. There was no question that I would have to knock them out; as long as the Banette were conscious, they would do all that they could to get past me and carry out their mischief on Sector Alpha.

Lune, the male Eevee’s POV:

The wave had advanced, pushing its limits to test our defenses. We had encountered a flock of flyers. A Fearow and Swellow remained behind to deal with us while the others pushed forward. I worried about Rúthruin, but I knew that she could take care of herself. I would simply have to make sure that I didn’t become careless.

Knocking these beasts out was not an option. Because they were not bound to the earth, Rúthruin was the only one who could really launch a serious assault against them, and I would not allow her to fight alone.

“We have to get past them somehow,” I whispered. “We should make our way back to the others and see if they need our help. We can perform better in greater numbers.”

“I have an idea,” she said. “Follow me.”

The bird duo had initiated a dive bomb and shot straight for us. With a quick gesture of her wings, Rúthruin sent a sharp blast of air at the Swellow, who recoiled as it cut her wing. I leapt and dug my claws into the Fearow’s wings as I jumped over him, then landed safely on the ground.

“It won’t cripple them much, but we can definitely outrun them now,” Rúthruin snickered.

I smiled at her in admiration. “Quick thinking and perfect execution, my love. I told you we would be all right, didn’t I?”

“And I was right to believe you,” she replied.

The birds had nearly lost our track when we heard a cry behind us. It was somewhat familiar, not a positive cry, but… chilling somehow. I turned to look and saw Shar.

She must have tried to investigate the commotion and gotten caught. Those birds of prey would tear her to shreds regardless of whether or not she’d provoked them. As much pain as she’d caused me, I could not stand and watch such a merciless attack.

“Ruth, we’ve got to-”

“I know, Lune, I know you very well, remember?” she smiled. Rúthruin generated another Air Cutter while I kicked dirt into the birds’ faces.

“Run,” I told the Absol.

Ryu, the male Vibrava’s POV:

“Ryu”, LV37 male Vibrava vs. LV45 male Banette and LV45 female Banette

I acted first, resorting to speed to smash into a ghost before she could shift into ethereal form. I threw the voodoo puppet into the ground, pinning her down while sand swirled about us and threatened to bury her. She left her solid body then, though, and slipped out of my grasp.

The two cackled at me from above. As I looked up, the sky turned jet black, so completely that it seemed as if somebody had blocked out the sun. When I realized that this darkness was moving, it was too late; the ghosts had struck with venom, directing their bitter essence into a wave of energy that seared my skin where it touched.

Taking flight, I retaliated with dragon flame. The scorching fire burned through their ghostly bodies, heated tongues inflicting so much pain to spite their ethereal form. One shrieked and the other shot me a merciless glare.

Because it seemed to hurt them so much, I unleashed another jet of Dragonbreath. Once again, I saw their faces twist in pain, but their expressions had changed now. It became obvious that they were going to stop me from scorching them again.

I decided that I had better not risk another similar attack; they would be ready for it by now, and obviously had something in mind. Instead, I chose to calm myself, to remind myself for the reason I was even fighting now. This was no ordinary battle, nothing that came at no cost. It was not for my enjoyment, not something where I could take risks, not like the tournament or all the other countless battles where only my honor was at stake. I fought for one purpose only – and that was to win.

While I took the time to focus all my strength on the task before me, the Banette pair had conjured a twirling orb of black flame. It was a live thing, with a tail of twisting fire and the smell of corruption. They intended to burn me with it but they would do no such thing. Even as they directed the Will-o-Wisp towards me, a spinning wall of earth shot up from the ground and enveloped my body, dispelling the ghostly flame with sheer force.

Still with the protective sand flying about me, I drove directly at them. If they wanted to escape my physical blow, they would have to convert to ethereal form; if they did so, they would suffer the wrath of my Dragonbreath again. I had them in a bad position – but I needed to be prepared.

My suspicions were confirmed, surely enough. The ghosts had an alternate plan. I found, as I charged towards them, that it was getting increasingly difficult to fly. The harder I beat my wings, the more I sank; and as I began to fall, one Banette drove me into the ground with telekinesis.

I could not understand; how? How had I allowed them to take such a mental advantage over me? I had been completely focused and not felt the stress of the psychic charge – until it was too late. I replayed in my mind the events leading up to this failure. I flew towards them, I could not fly, one Banette pushed me down herself… Then what was the other doing?

My mind raced across the possibilities. Careful, Ryu, remember what they can do. Could it be?

I took to the air again, flying towards them in the same way I had just previously done. This time, I watched the other Banette; and when I had trouble flying, I noticed that he was deep in concentration. Yet, I did not feel his mental probe. Unless…

To test my theory, I dipped down a bit, too unexpectedly for the other Banette to make a change. The air… was thinner. It was difficult to breathe here… My blood chilled at the implications.

This Banette had the ability to move entire quantities of molecules! It was a silent strategy, an unseen one – and it could be very subtle. I stared in wonder at this freak of nature. What horrors were these pokémon subjected to, to store such latent powers as this…? I was not sure that I wanted to understand.

Without the air beneath my wings, there would be nothing to push me upwards, no matter how hard I beat them. As a flyer against levitating ghosts, I could not let this elemental struggle take away my tactical advantage. What could I do to them on the ground? If they tried to head for Sector Alpha, I probably couldn’t even stop them.

What I needed to do was clear: get rid of the air-shifting Banette. To do that, I had to separate them… Somehow, I needed to split them apart, for I would not be able to take one down while the other watched. I needed a trick.

For the third time, I pretended not to know what was happening. Again I headed skywards and charged for the ghosts, shooting directly for the one who was openly using telekinesis to stop me. This generated a cackle from their master.

“If we knew how stupid Dragon Tamer pokémon were, the Crimson Blades wouldn’t have prepared so well for this attack!” he taunted.

You’d better enjoy your short-lived satisfaction, because I will wipe that smile out of your face very soon, I thought.

I allowed the banshee to fully control me this time; she encountered no resistance as she threw me to the ground once again. Because I did not struggle, she assumed that I had gotten tired, so she put even more effort into hurling me down. I struck the floor headfirst with a cry and did not move.

“Your precious Vibrava is injured,” I heard the Crimson Blade say to Karin. “And he is supposed to be your champion? Look, kid, I’ll do you a favor and pull off my Banette before they finish him off. Just stand aside while we carry out our orders and nobody will get hurt.”

As he talked I had already vanished under the cover of darkness. They would not find me as long as I was invisible; I had already moved from where they had last seen me. Before anyone noticed, however, I renewed my presence there – sort of.

Out of the ground seemingly sprouted twin green streaks that shot away in opposite directions. The insect-like creatures circled their quarry with unmatched agility, drawing the ghosts apart…

“Stick together! Don’t separate! It’s a trick! He’s pulling you apart with Double Team!”

Not quite.

I crashed one of my hunters into the female Banette, who screeched in warning to her partner. The Crimson Blade, seeing his pokémon absorb the split Hidden Power, became similarly agitated.

“It’s energy! Solid form, fool! SOLID!”

Perfect.

As soon as the Banette shifted from his ethereal state, he felt a heavy jaw of teeth sink into his corporeal flesh. The charged dark energy that engulfed him came too much at once; he was taken by surprise and fell unconscious before he could change states again.

His partner, who had also become corporeal at her master’s command, attempted to divert me from my path, but her will alone was not enough to conquer mine. I darted towards her despite her telekinetic efforts. She panicked, shifting back to ethereal form, hesitating, becoming solid, shifting back again…

In that time, I’d amassed another body of energy; the winged entity erupted upon her, drawing out her blood-curdling shriek of agony as she, too, joined her partner in a realm of darkness.

“Ryu” won!
“Ryu” grew to LV41!
“Ryu” learned Screech!
“Ryu” learned Steel Wing as his free LV40 TM!

My POV:

I ran over to Ryu, stroking him as he panted from exhaustion. “You are a hero, you know?” I whispered to him, smiling.

He shook his head. “I was only doing my job.”

Everything that followed came in such a blur… In the course of that few moments, I remember feeling every possible emotion that I’d known: fear, anger, love, pride, loss, confusion…

The Crimson Blade had gathered up his Banette pair and pulled out something I had not seen, nor expected to see, for a long time. I finally understood why they were rumored to be so ruthless; they were always ready to kill. With or without pokémon.

I froze as I heard the weapon click, realizing that it pointed directly at my chest. The gun-bearer was only twenty feet away; I would never be able to avoid the bullet.

“I told you, kid, stand aside and nobody will get hurt. Did you listen? No. Without my Banette, my mission will be delayed. There was no room for error. You will pay the price.”

Time passed painfully slowly. I heard him pull the trigger, heard the explosion of the ignited gunpowder, heard the bullet slice through the air as it shot towards its target: me.

I could even smell the fumes from the weapon and feel my blood fly towards my heart as my skin turned pale. The one thing I could not do was move.

For a while, I was numb, oblivious to what happened around me. I vaguely recalled a swift shadow emerging from the background, the cry of the Crimson Blade as he was struck, Ryu’s piercing yell… I knew, at least, that I was not dead.

When I returned to consciousness I saw two bodies on the ground: the Crimson Blade’s and Ryu’s. An Eevee stood on the wicked man’s chest, having wrestled his weapon away from him and cast it aside. A Scyther held up her blades threateningly as a warning. They seemed to say: try anything and we will have no qualms about slicing through you.

“Ryu!” I threw myself to the ground to pick him up, praying, praying that somehow what had happened was not irreversible. “Ryu…” I pressed the Vibrava close to me. He felt warm, and I could still hear his heart beat painfully. Please, don't be too late... I'll do anything.

“I’m fine… I used my wing.”

“You… talked.” I lay him on my lap and examined his injury. The bullet had lodged itself in his right wing, grazing its way through his flesh in a line before it finally stopped against bone. He wouldn’t be able to fly for a month, at least. This was my fault, but at least – at least he would live. When I heard the shot, I thought somebody would surely be lost. “I’ll get you medical attention as fast as I can,” I promised. “Just let me deal with this animal first.”

I took the dreaded weapon from the floor and held it in my hand. This thing had nearly taken my life – nearly taken Ryu’s. If things had gone the beast’s way, one of us would have died. Holding the cursed metal with trembling hands, I aimed it at the Crimson Blade, who lay sprawled on the floor.

“What is worth destroying lives? Is this all you see now?” I waved the gun at him. “Is this mindless abomination of metal your god now? So almighty that it tells you when you are allowed to kill?” My voice had risen to a shrill screech. “How dare you carry this around as if it gives you the right to take away souls? Who are you to make such a judgment?”

“Cut the rhetoric and shoot already,” he beckoned.

“Shoot?” I bit my lip hard, channeling all my hatred into my flesh until drops of blood began to ooze out from underneath my teeth. “I am not like you,” I answered coldly.

Without warning, I fired repeatedly into the ground until every last bit of ammunition had been exhausted. “Take your gun!” I screamed, throwing it at his face and aiming for his nose. It didn’t hit his nose, but I was quite sure that the metal dislodged his jaw, because I heard the sickening crack of bone and something didn’t look quite right.

In the background, I heard the cries, “Retreat! Retreat!” Tonight had been a night of many firsts. For the first time since Ryu had engaged in battle, I looked at my surroundings. The Crimson Blades had begun to flee; the Dragon Tamers were chasing them away with triumphant cries. Our defense… It had been successful.

Evenstar, the female Sneasel’s POV:

Immediate threat had gone for now; it ebbed away like the tide of fleeing Crimson Blades, washing back to their source. Nobody knew when the defeated ones would come back, but they would come – and we would be ready.

We sat in silence for a while, quite numb from the experience. I think we found it hard believe that such a horrible attack was now over. We read the exhaustion in each other’s faces, some of us fussing over Ryu and his injured wing.

Aglárien asked him a question that I’d thought of asking myself. “There’s something I don’t understand,” she said. “The bullet must have struck instantaneously as soon as it left the gun. How did you get there so fast?”

The Vibrava laughed. “I actually cheated… I left before he pulled the trigger. Quick Attack gave me a good enough boost.”

Personally, I admired his strength and ability to laugh even under such dire circumstances. The pain in his wing must have been hurting him, but then again, we should have expected this courage from Ryu. I’d seen him train even when there was no apparent danger; there was no stopping him from reaching the high goals that he set for himself. Sometimes I was afraid for him, but it was not my place to intervene in the affairs of others. I saw the pain in Karin’s eyes when she watched him sometimes, but she had learned to let him grow at his pace. It was better that way.

Karin, still holding Ryu, got to her feet. “Let’s get you all some medical treatment,” she said. We began to gather ourselves, brushing the dust out of our bruises, sighing in relief that this was over, getting ready to finally go home until somebody asked the inevitable question: “Where is Elwing?”

Ryu got up, trying to struggle out of Karin’s arms. “We’ve got to find her!”

“Ryu, don’t move,” she scolded lightly. “We’ll look for her. Look, there’re a lot of us. We’ll find her in no time. You, however, need to stop moving to avoid further injury.”

“No, I can help! I promise I won’t get hurt.” He squirmed so much that Karin had no choice but to let him go, injured wing or not. “I’ll go this way,” he said, pointing towards the encircling woods. “Let’s spread out.”

***

We’d searched all over the place, but none of us could find her. The lot of us had gathered back where we’d started, looking around for any more clues as to the Dratini’s whereabouts. We’d gotten quite worried, and silently I prayed that no harm had come to her, in spite of the terrible voices in my head that told me otherwise. The only two of us that hadn’t returned were Ryu and Gwaihir.

I was about to suggest that we split up to help them when I saw Gwaihir emerge from the distance. On his back was a worn little shape, forlorn and battered.

The Dratini lay weakly, unconscious on the Aerodactyl’s back. She had been through the unspeakable.

“Oh… No, please say no…” Eyes turned to where I stared in horror.

“Elwing! Elwing!” I heard Ryu’s voice calling, each cry louder and more desperate than the one before it. “Elwing, can you hear me? I know you’re here! You’ve got to be! Elwing?”

“Ryu,” I called, “She’s… here.”

Ryu, seeing us gathered around Gwaihir, came towards us. I looked upon the poor Dratini with a heavy heart, wishing that she had not had to experience such atrocities. I’m sorry you had to go through this, dear…

When he saw what had happened to her, the Vibrava let out a painful cry and began battering his body against a gnarled tree as he sobbed, his broken wing still bleeding from the gun wound. It hurt so much to watch.

“Dear, sweet Elwing…” Tears filled his eyes as he bowed his head in infinite grief. “I am so – so – sorry… I should have… been there for you.”
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Guardian Lune


All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.

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Old 05-24-2005, 01:49 PM   #123
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Alright, I haven't finished DarkFire's story yet, so if you want to rate it, it's all yours. ^_^
I'm going to read yours as soon as I can.
And Ade, you can have 19 stamps for your story. Here goes my assortment of comments.
-Does such a thing as a good goth exist? Correct me if I'm wrong, but as far as I know, stereotypical goths hate everything, even themselves. So if you consider yourself a good goth, then you can't be one.
-Sindel reminds me of my grandmother. Overeating is always an issue when I'm around her.
-Milly's getting more creative with his insults. Is it because of the competition? And has he been inside a London tube train?
All those comments were about the intro. The battle was... scary. But good.
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And how did this forum get into my sig?
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Old 05-24-2005, 04:25 PM   #124
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I can't believe I actually wrote a story and read two. o_O;

DarkFire - Your story was very interesting! I look forward to your next, especially if you're going to develop certain characters further. Several parts confused me, and if this happened out of ignorance, I apologize. Firstly, I found it strange that Ares should think of himself so superior when Rayne is so powerful, and second, I was not sure who Cyndane was. Regardless, take 20 Stamps! They are well-deserved.
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Guardian Lune


All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.
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Old 05-25-2005, 11:26 PM   #125
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Fire Element

Well, Ares is arrogant, plus he could use his Psychic to stop Rayne from attacking at all. But Ares is going to become a great character for my stories. And Cyndane is my other imaginary character. He's a Dragon Tamer who was an ex-Rocket or something to that effect. Trying to describe and keep his past mysterious. But basically she also had a small spark of interest for him, ^_~ Though she tried to hide it. And thanks for the Stamps! I'm back to 97!

And I'll pay 7 Stamps for an RBG in the Free Range Corral for Rayne please. He's Level 27. K, love ya, bai!
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Old 05-28-2005, 10:59 AM   #126
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Karin, I'm reading your story. It looks great so far, but I haven't finished yet, sorry.

Darkfire, Rayne is going to battle a Ditto!

Repost edit: yet another impressive story, Karin! It was beautifully written. Take 35 stamps! Once more, sorry for the delay.
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And how did this forum get into my sig?

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Old 05-30-2005, 07:24 PM   #127
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Okay... an RBG for Marius, please, from... I'll try the Nature Protection Agency this time. *pays seven stamps*
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Old 05-30-2005, 08:42 PM   #128
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He will be battling a magby.
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Old 06-04-2005, 06:12 PM   #129
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Before story notes: Not sure why I chose knowing transform as the weirdness for the Seviper in the lab, but it made for an interesting challenge. *shrugs* I’m sorry that it took me a while to post. Between having writer’s block and not enough time to write, it was tough. I finally got around to writing by staying up and writing between midnight and three am. ^^; I worked with Gabi on part of this, but it’s not done yet but I wanted to post what I had done though. I didn’t feel like color coding everything that was said ^^;

(Yana’s POV)

We hadn’t even been in this room for very long and Kiara was already engaged in a battle. When I noticed that Sinopa wasn’t by my side, I began looking around for her. She was standing in the middle of the doorway, paralyzed with fear as a huge chunk of metal was sent hurtling in her direction. My heart stopped as I was too far away to do anything. Luckily, Blazer on the other hand was able to do something. He had used his extremespeed attack to get to her and then get her to safety before the metal hit the ground. I sighed in relief.

The next thing I knew, a blow from behind sent me tumbling forwards. When I came to a stop, I quickly scrambled to my paws and turned to face my assailant. It was the Seviper. It stared at me, flicking its forked tongue in and out of its mouth. Finally, the snake got bored with staring at me and used its tail to send another piece of some sort of broken equipment hurtling my way. I ducked as it sailed harmlessly over my head.

Yana L.29 F Houndoom with White Spots VS. L.35 Seviper.

The worry that I had felt when Sinopa was in danger was giving way to anger now that she was safe. I roared as I charged forward in an attempt to get close enough to bite the Seviper. The fact that this snake had almost hurt Sinopa and didn’t even seem to care infuriated me. I knew that it was the seviper because the rest of the pokemon in the room were already engaged in battles.

The seviper met my charge by slinging its dagger like tail at me. I winced as the force of my charge caused it to cut deep into my shoulder. Luckily, none of the poison that had been coating the tail managed to get into the wound. Before the snake could withdraw its tail, I quickly bit down on it as hard as I could on it. With surprising strength, the seviper sent me hurtling across the room as soon as I had released my grip.

The seviper was faster than it looked and before I could even attempt to scramble to my paws, it sunk its fangs into the wound on my shoulder. As I cried out in pain, a psychic blast sent the seviper sailing across the room. It was times like this that I was grateful that my hidden power type was of the psychic type. The seviper, who up until this point had been silent, cried out in pain and I was able to determine that it was a female.

She quickly split into four separate sevipers. I groaned as I took a deep breath before exhaling several tiny fireballs. I tried to spread the embers out as far as I could but only managed to take out two of the clones. The seviper took advantage of her last remaining clone that she had and hit me with a toxic sludge. I winced as the poison worked its way into my system. I concentrated once again on my hidden power and by sheer luck I heat the real seviper.

“Enough of thissss.” She hissed before screeching loudly. The attack gave me a headache and the toxins were doing their job but I wasn’t beaten yet. I stared in disbelief at the seviper. At first, I thought that it was the toxins affecting my eyesight, so I blinked to make sure what I was seeing was really happening. It was. She was slowly changing her shape. I blinked again and when I had opened my eyes again, I was staring at myself. I just stood there, not sure if what I was seeing was real. Unfortunately, it was.

Using my surprise to her advantage, she ran over and bit down on as hard as she could on my injured shoulder. I snarled at the pseudohoundoom before launching a beam of darkness from my eyes. My opponent roared in pain before retaliating with a sludge bomb. She smirked before opening her mouth to howl. I had been preparing a sludge bomb of my own and was now waiting for the perfect moment to strike. This was it, I thought to myself as I launched my attack. As I watched, the sludge bomb landed in her mouth and she gagged before blanching slightly. I guessed that the sludge bomb had poisoned her.

My opponent’s eyes began glowing an eerie black color as mine did the same. I was able to release my night shade attack a few seconds before she did, but both attacks hit their mark. By this time, we were both, panting, weak, and tired. I used another night shade, and this time the pseudohoundoom seemed to be on the urge of fainting. She took another step forward, faltered, and collapsed. She was out cold.

I won.
I grew to L.31!
I learned Faint Attack by level and Rest as my free TM.

I stumbled over to Amy and nudged my pokeball with my nose, and as soon as it opened I went in side.


(Kiara’s POV)

Once my battle was over, I stood there panting. It was at that moment that Caledor came running over. I smiled and gave him a nuzzle. “Are you okay?” I asked him. Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed that Yana’s battle was ending and she didn’t look so hot.

Caledor shook his head. “I should be asking you that. You took on that Banette just to help me and I couldn’t’ even lift a paw! I’m sorry I put you through this, but thanks a lot for what you did. I’ll never be able to thank you enough.”

I nuzzled him. “Don’t worry about that. I’m just glad that you’re okay.” I tried to lighten the situation with what I said next, but I will admit, I’m just not used to doing that. “I’m having a major bad fur day now.” It was true my fur was sticking out in every possible direction that I could.

Caledor grinned. “Oh, not at all! Your fur is always good! It’s warm and fluffy and… and I’m being silly again. Will you please not tell Hero about what just happened? He wouldn’t understand and he’d make fun of me, and I normally don’t mind it when he does, but there are just a few things I’d rather not be reminded of.”

I blushed slightly when Caledor commented about my fur. However, when he asked me not to tell Hero about what had happened, I looked Caledor in the eyes. “I promise that I wont’ tell.” “Thanks.”

I was about to say something when Tsunami interrupted. “Excuse me, but shouldn’t we get moving before more crazy pokemon come to greet us?”

“And before we go crazy ourselves!” Ventura added. “Something’s definitely wrong here, and I don’t mean just the pokemon. We need to fix it before it gets worse.”

“It probably wouldn’t hurt.” I agreed. Then, I remembered that I had lost my earring during the battle. “I just remembered that the Banette knocked my earring off and I didn’t get to see where it went.” I smiled apologetically. “Is there anyway we can find it before we go?”

“That won’t be a problem.” Ventura said as she scanned the area. “There it is!” I was a bit startled when she sent me the psychic pulse, but I recovered quickly. I hurried over to get my earring. “Thanks.” I told Ventura, but I wasn’t sure if she had heard me. “It’s good to know that I can still locate things within the room I’m in. The rest of the place is so blurry. I have a bad feeling about this place.” she had continued.

Lagi turned to look at Ventura. “I know the situation is grave, but you feel more troubled than most here. What’s wrong?”

“Just analogy.” Ventura answered. “The last time my psychic abilities were blocked I ended up finding something that should have stayed locked up forever. I just hope it’s not the case this time.”

“If you’re thinking what I’m thinking, so do i.” Gabi agreed. “Though I don’t think there are any demons involved here. But I agree that we should keep moving. We must find out what’s going on, and I don’t want Hero to be alone against whatever it is we’re dealing with.”

“I don’t think he’ll be alone. I saw our mysterious friend leave the room during the battles. I think he’s gone after him.” Tsunami informed us.

Gabi turned to look at Amy. “Then we’ll go after both of them. Shall we, Amy?” Amy nodded in agreement as she answered with a “Yeah.”

So that’s when we left the room that we were in. We continued through many corridors that all looked like the one that we had left earlier. Some of them had been untouched while others had been scattered with debris. Eventually we came upon a room that had a machine that was broken lying in the middle of the floor.

“It’s strange, I don’t feel the vibrations here.” Ventura said before she noticed the broken machine. “Scratch that, it’s not strange at all.”

Gabi knelt down and picked it up. “I’ve seen this before, years ago. I didn’t think they were still using them.” I glanced over at Amy and she looked as confused as I felt.

“It had to be Team Rocket, hadn’t it?” Pidgeot muttered. At the mention of Team Rocket, Sinopa squeaked. I was about to go over and comfort her but Kovu got there before I could even take a step.

“Unless they’ve started selling Psionic Wave Emitters to someone else, I guess it’s them again.” Gabi then turned to look at Amy. “This is what causes pokemon to go berserk. It must be the source of the vibrations that Ventura was feeling.” she explained. “Team Rocket has used them a few times in the past.” Amy nodded. “Thanks for explaining.” “You’re welcome.”

Gabi shook her head. “I have no idea how they managed to gain access to this lab, though. But we must find a way to stop them from achieving whatever it is they’re trying to do here.” Amy was nodding her head in agreement.

“If we’re aiming for the leaders of the operation, we should look for a place with computers. Anywhere else we’ll just find grunts or feral pokemon.” Ventura suggested as Gabi turned to look at her. “Can you locate that place from here?” “There’s still some interference, but I can try.”

“What about Hero?” Tsunami asked. It was Lagi that answered him. “He’s close, I can feel him. I can try to reach him and tell him to join us. It feels like he’s finally realized the futility of wandering aimlessly.” Gabi nodded. “Be careful. “I will.” Lagi assured her.

“Assuming Lagi manages to get Hero back with us and Ventura manages to find our enemies, does anyone have a plan?” Gabi asked.

“No, sorry.” Kovu apologized, shaking his head.

“We could do the same thing they are doing and break everything they try to sue.” Caledor suggested.

“In that case wouldn’t we be helping them?” Pidgeot asked.

“No, we’d be stopping them from getting what they want, and giving the Guild a pain in the neck at the same time.” Caledor explained.

“We’re in the guild, you know?” Gabi reminded him.

“You are. But you know I don’t want to hurt you. Just the dark and secretive side of the guild who mess with our lives without even letting us know who they are or what they’re doing, let alone their reasons.”

“Do my ears deceive me? I could swear the voice I’ve just heard was Caledor’s, but it can’t be because what he said sounded way to serious for him.” Hero said, walking in followed by Lagi, Glyph, and a multi-colored Raichu.

“Hey, give me some credit! Even I know how to be serious when the situation calls for it. It’s just that I avoid it whenever I can.” Caledor retaliated. I moved closer to him. Caledor smiled and rubbed his head against my mane, causing me to purr.

It was at that exact moment that an alarm started going off. The alarm was soon followed by blinking red lights as well as a commotion outside the room. I groaned. “That can’t be good.”

“No, it can’t.” Tsunami agreed. “Should we stay here and wait, try to find the bosses regardless, or just leave the place?” he asked.

Gabi turned to look at him. “I think we should stay here until we have a clue about what’s going on.”

Almost as soon as she had spoken, a Porygon 2 appeared. When it noticed us, its eyes widened and it was gone again.

“That felt like a scout to me. It’s probably going to inform someone of our presence.” Lagi informed us.

Gabi turned to Ventura and asked her if she had found anything yet. “Just chaos. But, I agree with Lagi, if we stay, someone will be coming for us. Oh, wait, there’s something.”

“What is it?” Amy asked.

“A… Rapidash? But it feels bigger, more muscular and quite furious too. It’s moving fast.”

The Porygon 2 chose that moment to reappear. This time it had brought along someone. That someone was a woman either in her late twenties or early thirties that was wearing a black Rocket uniform. She also had long blonde hair that was wavy. As soon as she had appeared, I heard a frightened squeak from Sinopa.

The woman looked at all of us in the room. “You again?! What have you done this time?”

Gabi turned to face her. “You’re surprised to see us? That’s a first! You probably won’t listen but whatever set that alarm off, we didn’t do it. We were here when it happened.

By now, Gabi wasn’t who the woman was looking at. It was me and Caledor. “It seems you’ve been having fun. The poor little Espeon needs his girlfriend to protect him?” I was about to take a step forward when Gabi spoke up. “Leave them alone. Is there anything you can do aside from being annoying?”

“Certainly, but being annoying is the most fun part. Now, if you’ll excuse me, we have something to deal with and you’re in the way.”

“What? You don’t want to battle us?” Gabi asked, puzzled.

“Come on, you know I have better things to do than shout out stupid commands to stupid pokemon. We’ve tried that before and it was just a waste of time. You should get tired of it eventually. You know how you keep having battle after battle and in the end it’s all the same as if you’d done nothing… I’m sure you’ll grow out of it at some point.”

“If you’re not here for the pokemon, then what are you here for?”

The woman turned to look at Gabi. “Good question. Maybe we do want the pokemon to get even with the Crimson Blades. Maybe there’s a great power waiting to be awakened somewhere in this lab. Or maybe we’re just doing this to prove our might, or to bring the Dragon’s Guild one step closer to its downfall. Or maybe none of those options are right and you’ll never find out the true reason why we’re here, and you’ll forever stay mad at yourself because you were standing right in front of me and couldn’t extract the information from me.

A frightened squeak brought my attention back to Sinopa. There was a small puddle where she had been sitting, but she was now hiding behind Kovu.

Ventura turned to look at Caledor. “Caledor, please translate.” She then turned to look at the Rocket woman. “What are you planning to do one you find the raging Rapidash who started running across the lab and trampling everything in its way ever since the alarm went off?”

“A Rapidash?”

“She didn’t know?” Hero asked, raising an eyebrow.

“Alright, you got me there.” the Rocket woman admitted. “We didn’t know what it was, only that it was something extremely powerful. It’ll break out eventually, and it will be too late to control it. So if you all want to go and chase it and save the day as you always like to do, go ahead, I won’t stop you.”

“You don’t think we can make it, do you, Gia?” Gabi asked her.

Gia, the Rocket woman, looked around at all of us before speaking again. “Your endless hope is one of your biggest flaws. Just look at yourselves. You all try to hide it, but you’re scared to the bones. That little Vulpix is the most honest of you all. Nice to see you again, by the way.” Gia smiled sarcastically at Sinopa who began shaking as she tried to make herself look smaller. Kovu tried to comfort Sinopa, but the poor kid was just too afraid.

“Those of you who pretend to be the strongest have issues they haven’t been able to get over no matter what.” Gia continued. Some of you are so good at hiding your feelings, they manage to hide them even from themselves. I could get into details, but I'd be wasting your time telling you what you already know. If you think you can do it, it will be fun to watch you try. And if you happen to die in the process... Well, it'll be one less problem to worry about."

Gabi turned to Amy, whispering. “What do you think we should do?” “I’m not sure. We need to stop those machines, but we can’t let that thing escape if we can help it.” she whispered back.

“I’ll leave you girls to discuss what to do. Let’s go, Terabyte.” A split second later, both of them were gone. Almost immediately, Sinopa dashed across the room and dove between me and Caledor. I could still feel her shaking so I tried to comfort her.

“She laughed at us and got away again. Don’t you hate that?” Hero said, as he looked around. "I'd say we go after that Rapidash and see how powerful it really is, but if Gia was afraid of it, maybe it's not a good idea to get in its way. Though watching probably wouldn't hurt."

“I can search for the remaining PWEs, and if someone comes with me, we can destroy them in no time.” Ventura added.

“What about the other Dragon Tamers in the building?” Gabi asked. “I hope everyone’s alright.” Sylvan said, voicing the thought that was on all of our minds.

“Does this kind of thing happen to you guys often?” the colorful Raichu asked.

“Way too often.” Sylvan admitted, as I nodded my head in agreement. “Who are you anyway?” she asked. “With all the commotion, I forgot to ask.”

“I still have to come up with a name for myself. You can call me 324 or Raichu. I think I’m on my way out of here though now I can’t be sure.”

The espeon that I had met earlier, Glyph, spoke up next. “Maybe we can arrange for the Guild to let you stay with us. Until you decide what to do, but they needn't know that part. After all, it doesn't look like there will be much left for this place after today and I don't think the Guild will want to lose you or leave you homeless."

The raichu smiled sadly. “I'm not the only one, you know. There are many others here. Maybe once the invaders are gone, I should stay here and help with the reconstruction. Make sure everyone is ok, maybe even turn this place into something better for all of us. A real home."

“Good luck with that. Call if you need help.” Caledor told 324. “Thanks.” The Raichu said, smiling.

“That still doesn’t solve our most urgent problem.” Gabi reminded us.

“True.” I agreed.

“Maybe we should spread out.” Gabi suggested. “Some of us can look for the Rapidash while some others try to destroy the PWEs, and we can all check on anyone we find in the process.”

“Sounds like a good idea.” Kovu agreed.

“So Hero goes to see the Rapidash and I go to search the lab. I can give Hero’s group the Rapidash’s latest location. Who’s with him, and who’s with me?” Ventura asked.

“I’m with you, Ventura.” Sylvan answered immediately.

“I’ll go with Hero.” Kovu decided.

“I think I will too. I want to know what we’re dealing with.”

It was Lagi that spoke next, agreeing with Gabi had said. “Same here. I may be able to sense what the Rapidash is feeling.”

“Ok, but I’ll need some firepower.” Amber turned to Ventura. “Then, I guess I’ll go with you.” I didn’t mean to be literal, but your help is welcome.” Ventura told Amber.

324 chose to go with Ventura’s group as well. I'll help search the lab. I haven't seen that Rapidash before, but it doesn't sound like someone I'm ready to see. I'm sorry." “Don’t be.” Glyph reassured her. If I didn't have to give Ivan all the details of our stay here, I might opt out of that one too."

I turned to look at Caledor. “Which group do you want to go with?” I asked him

“I don’t know.” he admitted. “I’ve been thinking, but… I’m not sure. Who would you rather go with?”

Before I could answer him, Sinopa nervously cleared her throat. “Could… could I go with you two?” she asked.

Caledor grinned, putting Sinopa at ease. Of course! You know how it goes... The more the merrier. And I should add, the merrier the better.” I chuckled at that. “But where are we going?” he asked.

“I guess if she is coming with use, we should go with Ventura’s group. If anything happened to Sinopa, I know I wouldn’t be able to forgive myself.”

Caledor nodded in agreement. “You're right. I must warn you, though. Ventura can be scary when she gets all bossy. But at any rate it's safer than the other option.”

Amy decided to join the Rapidash search group. Blazer, Sugar, Sweetie, and Flame also chose to go with Hero’s group. The remaining members of my team decided to go with us on Ventura’s team. That group consisted of Jasmine, Darin, Colby, Tiny, and Ebony.

“I’ll go with whichever group needs me more.” Tsunami stated.

“I’ll go with Hero, and I assume Water Angel will too, since she’s in her pokeball. I don’t know if we’ll fight or just watch.” Pidgeot then looked over at Tsunami. “I think you and Iael should probably go with Ventura.”

“Are you sure you’ll be alright?” Tsunami asked. “So far Ventura’s group is larger.”

“Maybe so,” Pidgeot admitted. “But, you're the strongest one in it, and you'll be needed if you come across some powerful genetically enhanced pokemon."

Once the groups had been decided, it was time to go.

To be continued… I hope.
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Old 06-06-2005, 02:33 PM   #130
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Thanks for the comments, Gabi.

I'd like an extension for the next scenario that comes up, if possible. Starting the day after tomorrow, I won't have reliable access to a computer for at least 2 months.
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All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.
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Old 06-06-2005, 02:45 PM   #131
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The extension is yours. Though judging by the rate scenarios are being posted, you might not even need it. ¬_¬ However, Ade did say he'd post the next scenario soon.
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And how did this forum get into my sig?
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Old 06-06-2005, 06:43 PM   #132
AntiAsh Superstar
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Amy, I'll have yours rated by tomorrow, it'll give me something different to do in my lunch break.

In the meantime, this has been a long time coming and I can only apologise for the wait. It only just dawned on me that I can actually instigate a scenario change these days. What kind of a doofus am I? As ever, if you've got an extension for the last scenario it remains valid until the end of this one. But anyways, without further ado...

The Last Assault
It had been a few weeks since the last attempt the Crimson Blades had made to ruins the lives of everybody in Ulthuan. And although their ruthless assault had left a mark on Sector Alpha the people were more than capable of rebuilding, united in their desire to put the Blades behind them.

Until one afternoon, when Armand DiAnnio's face mysteriously appeared on every television set in the realm, a cruel sneer on his elegant face.

"This thing's on, right?" he asked before fixing his attentions upon whatever camera was currently recording him. "Ah. Very warm greetings to everyone who's vegetating in front of the TV at this moment in time. I hate to ruin your day's watching and all but... hey, them's the breaks. Just in case you've been living under a rock for the past few months, my name's Armand DiAnnio, head of the Crimson Blades. And I've got a little proposition for two very special groups of people. Namely the Dragon Tamers and my old friends Team Rocket. I'm sure you must all want me dead, mustn't you? I mean, all the endless trouble I've caused you! Well, here's your chance to settle the score. I'm fed up with these little skirmishes. Time we settled our differences once and for all. I'm inviting you all to come along to my base on the Shifting Isles. We're gonna have ourselves a little competition. Any challenger who wishes to play against the best trainers the Blades have in pokémon battles. You win, you earn the right to try your luck against me in whatever way you fancy. You lose, well... I'm getting pretty low on food for Reaper, let's put it that way. Oh, and if you're worried about this all being some kind of terrible trap... well, you'd probably be right to be suspicious, but..." Here Armand paused for a moment. "Team Rocket, if you ever want to see Giovanni alive again this is gonna be your only chance to rescue him. And Tamers, just so you know I'll have Reaper poised to take out Griffon Gate if nobody shows. I've done my research, you know. Those Gates are all that's holding in some of the nastier things in the Shadowlands. I'd hate to see what might happen if one of them got itself a little blown up, wouldn't you? Anyway, you've 48 hours to think about it. I hope to see you all then." And with this the Blades boss blinked off the screen, replaced again with the relative comforts of whatever soap opera was on at the time.

Mission
Armand DiAnnio has issued a personal challenge to the Dragon Tamers, to come to his base and take on his best trainers. He is offering to personally battle anyone who proves themselves worthy. Although the Guild suspects a trap and sent out a military force to deal with the Blades, contact with the squadron has been lost for 24 hours. Hence they turn to the Dragon Tamers once again. Head for the Crimson Blades base on the Shifting Isles and try to take out as many of his underlings as you can. This is our best chance yet to finally end the reign of terror caused by these ruthless criminals so give it all you've got. As ever, be warned that the Blades are far more evil and bloody-minded than more common criminals and may well be armed. Extreme caution is advised. You are also advised against going directly against DiAnnio himself, at least as long as his Reaper is alive. The Salamence has been responsible for the destruction of countless buildings and settlements and is far too powerful to be taken on by normal means.

Levels 15 and under

L8 Mawile (+1)
L15 Poliwag (+2)

Level 15.5 to 25
L20 Growlithe (+1)
L25 Miltank (+2)

Level 25.5 to 35
L30 Scyther (+1)
L35 Breloom (+2)

Level 35.5 to 45
L40 Corphish (+1)
L45 Venusaur (+2)

Level 45.5 to 55
L50 Machoke (+1)
L55 Altaria (+2)

Level 55.5 to 65
L60 Sharpedo (+1)
L65 Heracross (+2)

Level 65.5 to 75
L70 Typhlosion (+1)
L75 Aggron (+2)

Level 75.5 to 85
L80 Magmar (+1)
L85 Banette (+2)

Level 85.5 and above
L90 Alakazam (+1)
L100 Dragonite (+2)
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Old 06-06-2005, 06:51 PM   #133
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Fire Element

Extension on this scenario, please.
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When a fire of darkness is born in the midst of a storm, a goddess shall return to Earth

AC/CC/ASB
The Test

AC Pokemon looking for a battle!
Willing to trade gems for a Fire Gem!


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Old 06-06-2005, 08:28 PM   #134
AntiAsh Superstar
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Darkfire, you get your extension.

Anyways, excuse me while I post my last RBG. Seriously, the last half was just done in one sitting so I could get it out of the way. ^^;;
---
BANG!
BANG!
BANG!


Three bullets fired into the air, three bullets that soared precisely towards their target. Or not that precisely. For these were three bullets that all, whilst managing to land within the area of the targets they were aimed at, missed the bullseye by a considerable distance.
"Ade, man, give up already. I mean, considering the fact that last week you were practically hitting the people in the next firing booth you've come a long way but I just don't think you're cut out to be a brilliant marksman. It requires patience, for a start. And accuracy. And did I ever mention not being the most shortsighted $&%^er on the planet?" I could hear Milliardo's trademark sneer even from within the confines of my protective earpieces. It had been a dark day for the world when the Umbreon had mastered telepathy! With a sigh I removed the earplugs and goggles and lay down the surprisingly light pistol I had been using just seconds ago.
"I think I'd do a lot better without having to worry about running commentary popping into my head without notice, you know." Finally I stepped outside the booth. This had been my lunchtime activity of choice for the past week or so. Just going down to the Guild's barracks, finding an empty booth in the firing range and trying my hardest to teach myself how to aim a weapon. Something buried deep within my subconsciousness had been demanding that this was necessary. "You're a bloody distraction, Milliardo. Next time I'm bringing Bolovayr. At least he knows when to keep his mouth shut."
"Hey, my mouth was shut the whole time!"
"Shame your... wait, why am I even bothering to argue with you? It gets me about as far as telling Thunderblast to behave herself does." I chuckled to myself. I liked my Raichu a lot but she was notoriously hard to control. Just the other day I found out she had been scheming with her old teammates May and Blaze to book them both plane tickets back to Ulthuan. "Why do I always end up with the misfits of the pokémon world?"
"Because you're not exactly stable yourself?" my Umbreon shot back quickly. "I mean, look at you. You're a messy ginger goth who's just spent his entire lunch hour playing with guns. Does Scarygirl have any idea that you've been teaching yourself to be a ruthless killer?"
"No, and she's not going to find out either," I replied sternly. "This business with the Crimson Blades is making her edgy enough as it is, we don't need her to find any more reasons to get paranoid over my safety."
"Yeah. You're doing a fine job of getting paranoid over your safety on your own." I didn't grand this latest comment a reply. Instead I stared vacantly into the distance, my mind rapidly retreating back to the truly bizarre situation that had led me to taking such an uncharacteristic course of action.

I had just returned from getting Milliardo's injuries patched up from our rather eventful day at the park. Our group were in a rather sullen mood after the whole incident with Reaper, a mood not particularly helped by Rhiannon's rather fatalistic view of the whole situation. Even Megan seemed to have fallen silent, which was normally considered a miracle by anyone who had spent more than ten seconds in her company. So I was rather glad when the telephone rang almost seconds after I had shut the front door. I had raced over and picked up the receiver eagerly.
"Hello?" I had said.
"Good afternoon, Lord Umbreon." The voice on the other end was male. Cool, almost cold even, and far too composed to be sane. The typical sort of person who would ring me asking for Lord Umbreon, in other words. "I hope I'm not interrupting anything."
"No, but before we start talking Guild business I should tell you this is my day off."
"Well this isn't strictly Guild business... at least not in the way you're thinking. And don't delude yourself, Lord Umbreon. There are no days off from the Dragons Guild, not during times like these."
"Look, who are you anyway? And what do you want?" I snapped irritably. This phone call was starting to irk me!
"I'm not really at liberty to say over the phone. Perhaps we could meet up? Then I could explain in person. I have a little proposition for you."
"If you can't tell me over the phone then I'm probably not interested."
"I think you will be. It concerns a large pocket of supernatural energy that my sources tell me you happened to be near at the time."
"Eh?"
"I'm not being clear enough, am I? Okay. Reaper. And mind control. The situation is getting out of hand, Lord Umbreon. And how is your favoured fighter feeling now, anyway?" My blood ran cold. Whoever this was knew what was going on! That either meant a real breakthrough or a trap. Either way, I couldn't afford to not investigate further.
"Fine. You've got my interest. Where and when?"
"The Rusty Pickaxe. It's in Fountain Square not so far from that park you were just in. Half an hour. I'll be waiting for you."
"Wait! How will I recognise you?"
"Don't worry about that. I think you'll manage without any clues somehow."

As it turned out the voice on the other end of the phone had been spot on with that last analysis. I had recognised the man instantly and it was almost enough to make me turn right back around and walk back home again. The last time I had seen him we had been allies of a sort but... but he still made alarm bells ring in my head. The tall, pale man who called himself Lord Absol.
"Please. Sit." In the end curiosity won out against my inherent dislike of the head of the Guild's Tactical Neutralisation Unit. "I see you brought your Jolteon along too. Splendid. It gives me a chance to clear the air somewhat. Before we begin..." Here Lord Absol turned his gaze over to Rhiannon, who seemed to flinch instinctively. "...allow me to apologise. I have heard enough to satisfy me, Rhiannon. You have been pardoned by my Order."
"We're so thrilled." The Jolteon scowled at the man whose pursuit at one time had left her so scared she evolved herself purely to escape detection. "Forgive us if it takes somewhat longer for you to earn your pardon from us."
"Now, now, Rhiannon! Don't be so hasty! After all, the enemy of my enemy is my friend, right?" A cheery voice came from the direction of the ceiling. Everyone looked up to see a small Eevee with a bright red ruff sat upside down in a manner normally reserved for Thunderblast when she was trying to get as many odd looks as possible. Quickly it dropped onto the table, landing so lightly it hardly left a vibration. "Or at the very least, it's the enemy of my enemy and I can always sit back and watch the two tear each other apart, right?"
"Enigma???" Rhiannon seemed stunned. "What are you doing here?"
"Same as you. I was invited. Anyway, it's really not my place to explain that, is it?" The Eevee stuck her tongue out before looking around the rather deserted bar. It was a dark, dingy place and hence free of the sort of person who might eavesdrop into the conversation. "I think I'd rather like a drink, you know."
"Later, Enigma," Lord Absol silenced his pokémon with a wave of a gauntleted hand. "First, to business." Here he pulled a folder out of a bag sat by his feet and pushed it over the table at me.
"What's this?" I asked.
"Earlier today my Order detected the most immense spike in ethereal power detected since The Sundering. Which, in case you weren't aware, was the immense magical civil war that tore apart Ulthuan's ancient civilisations."
"I'm well aware what The Sundering is, Lord Absol," I commented. "I've been having to do more research into ancient Ulthuan than I have hours in the day for lately."
"Which is one of the reasons I come to you with this first. The other we'll get to in a minute. Anyway, immediately I put my best investigator I have on the case to find out exactly what was going on. The results worry me greatly. The spike occurred at the same time as we later discovered Reaper of the Crimson Blades was attempting to use some form of mind control on an innocent pokémon. I hear you were in the area at the time so that news is nothing you don't already know. But... well, this is a spike in ethereal energy. Not psychic. Not anything we were anticipating, any of us."
"What's your point here?"
"My point is that we have seriously been underestimating the power the Crimson Blades are hiding behind, and we realise that far too late to avert disaster covertly, as my department is assigned to do. To that end, for this single instance only, I'm willing to discard protocol. This folder contains all the information we have gathered that may help in defeating the Blades." I stared down at said folder. It was brown and unassuming and, more worryingly, rather thin considering how good Lord Absol usually seemed at gathering intelligence. "There are one or two in the mainstream Guild I would rather like to have on my side when dealing with this threat. I'm hoping to arrange a meeting with another as soon as I can. In the meantime I felt I ought to talk to you. You've proven to be trustworthy. You know more about the ancient history of Ulthuan than most, which may come in handy when reading my notes. You've successfully dealt with the Crimson Blades in the past. Not to mention I know for a fact that no matter how hard we try the Dragon Tamers are probably going to be in the middle of whatever flares up next, so if I can slip a little help their way it could prevent a fair few deaths. And..."
"And?"
"And if Reaper is to be defeated I'm going to need your Jolteon to re-learn how to fight alongside my latest acquisition. It pains me to say this, but sometimes fighting fire with fire is the only way."
"Or in this case, fighting Dragon with Electric and..." Enigma began but was quickly silenced again.
"Enigma, you're my most trusted confidante but you're very annoying when you get restless. Go fetch your new friend."
"No need, Boss." A sudden telepathic voice echoed in the heads of all present. "I got bored hanging around so her new friend's already here!" Suddenly a large Scizor stepped out from a doorway, much to the surprise of the few residents of the pub. It seemed pretty unremarkable save for the telepathy. Well, that and the fact that it's right arm had been replaced with a rather impressive-looking bionic one. "Okay! To business!" the Scizor cried, slamming its one organic claw down hard on the table. "Barman! One still water for the moody guy with the black hair, one glass of house red for the moody guy with the orange hair, one triple vodka and coke for me, one large brandy for this little cutie here because one of these days I am going to seduce you, babes..." Enigma, the recipient of this comment, didn't seem to know whether to blush or grimace, "...and... let me think... one pot of Earl Grey and you'd probably better bring twice as much milk and twenty times as much sugar as you normally do. Oh yeah, man! I still got it!" The Scizor punched the air in glee. "Hey, does this place do bar food or what?"
"You, my friend, are going to be a lot of work, I can just tell." Lord Absol's tone was practically the same one I used to yell at my own pokémon when they were becoming unruly. "Kindly get some drinks if that's what will keep you happy." Suddenly he turned his attention back to me. "I'll be straight with you. I've been spending a lot of time in the White Tower recently. My Order have always been on good terms with Teclis. And the last time an energy spike like the one Reaper caused occurred... that, my friend, marked the start of the Sundering. We can't allow another incident like that to happen, friend. Which is why I'm asking you, as the only one in the Guild and the Tamers who might fully appreciate the threat facing us. Go prepare. Go prepare yourselves and your pokémon for a threat the likes of which you have never seen."


So I had taken Lord Absol's words to heart. I had never really liked the guy much. He was far too secretive for my liking and I still worried that he might have had ulterior motives. But that time he had seemed sincere. So I had trained. And as for my pokémon... well some trained more than others. Rhiannon, for example, hadn't really recovered from a quite remarkable shock that day and hence was in the middle of a meeting with Lord Absol's two pokémon. Both of whom, mercifully, she actually got on quite well with for one reason or another.
"So Enigma," the Jolteon commented, "It seems we were right about you." The scene was a little pokémon made bar on the outskirts of Sector Alpha, settled neatly within the confines of a small copse of trees. Rhiannon had been here before, of course. So had Enigma, she suspected. "A little honesty to begin with would have been nice."
"Really, Rhiannon," the flame-ruffed Eevee chuckled. "Where would the fun have been in that? Besides, I hardly think you would have let me tag along if I'd have gone 'Hi, I'm Enigma, I'm the best damn spy the Order of the Dragon have and by the way, our reason for existing is to wipe out supernatural threats. Mind if I stick around? You're giving out the biggest demonic aura I've sensed in years.'. I rather suspect you might have decided to kill me before I learned too much. Although it's true that I was never put through an enhancement programme. Actually I was never tested on at all. I was just born mutated and Lord Absol happened to chance upon me. Even my appearance in the lab was just a case of me being planted there to look into what tests were being performed there. By the way, when your friend Abbadon does show up thank him from me, won't you? I do believe he's saved the Order a rather messy job."
"We will do," Rhiannon nodded. "Now. As for you..." Here she turned to the Scizor who actually paused in mid flask of extra strong cider. Which, if the Jolteon recalled correctly, meant he was actually giving his full attention. "What happened to you. Alto?"
"Good question, Lady R!" the Scizor replied, knocking back the rest of his flask in one. "Seems to me that one second I had a twenty-story building dropped on my head the next I'm in all these weird chains and stuff and some weird guy's telling me what do do. Then I get another building dropped on top of me while I'm working with this guy. Then all of a sudden he turns all nice and stops chaining me up, offers me a roof over my head and free food as long as I follow this little lady here..." Alto gestured at Enigma at this point.
"I was actually rather surprised," the Eevee commented. "He accepted without a thought. And even more strangely got my gender correct on our first meeting, which has never happened to me before."
"In that case everyone else is blind," Alto declared loudly. "How can they not tell you're a girl when you're as beautiful as you are?"
"Rhiannon. Seriously." Enigma rolled her eyes. "How did you manage to work with him for over a year?" Rhiannon couldn't help but notice this was said with a smile, as if in some way Enigma was actually rather flattered by the compliment. She didn't really have the heart to tell the Eevee that Alto tended to act this way with all females in the vicinity.
"Never mind that," Alto commented. "Question we should be asking you, Lady R, is how did you manage to get so damn sexy?"
"Hey!" Enigma pouted. "Attention here, please. A girl could get jealous and stop picking up the tab for your ridiculous food and drinks bills."
"Alto..." Rhiannon started to talk to her old friend calmly. The two had been equals in the demonic ranks of the Dark Cloak, that terrible cult that had once nearly succeeded in destroying Ulthuan. Although Alto had never cared much for a life of action. To the Scizor as long as he had food and drink and women he was happy, and it took a great deal of patience to break through his simple-minded hedonism. "We're not here to talk about that. We're here to get things straight."
"Eh? Thought they were straight. I got caught in the blast when they destroyed our old barracks and lost an arm and now I've been caught up in the nonsense that the 'good' zealots are spouting. I mean, good, bad, what's the difference? I mean, a rabid fanatic's a rabid fanatic no matter what they're fanatical about. Me, I just accept it. If they'll feed me well I'll work for them."
"Not that." Rhiannon shook her head. "We may be second-guessing Lord Absol here but we think he's hoping we will be able to fight alongside you once more, Alto."
"True." Enigma nodded. "Even though he hasn't said as much yet I know that's his plan. I think he's only intending you and Alto to get out of this altercation alive, Rhiannon. That's even taking into account the fact that you've dragged Abbadon into this."
"Why are you telling us this?" Rhiannon asked. "You're being unusually frank, Enigma."
"As Lord Absol said," the Eevee replied. "There's no longer any time for protocol and secrecy. Our opinion, at least at the moment, is to be open with the Tamers so they can assist us beat the upcoming threat. And yeah, I suppose it isn't much in my nature but there's a first time for everything isn't there?" The Eevee grinned broadly. "So. You guys need a third party to help with re-training? I need to kill some time while Lord Absol makes some inquiries at the Guild."
"Inquiries?" Rhiannon asked.
"Your trainer isn't the only one who might be useful in bringing about peace again, you know," Enigma smirked, clearly back to her old self after her remarkable burst of honesty. "So then. Training."

"So then. Training." Another less than satisfying day at the Guild had been spent trying to divide my time between twenty tasks at once. My actual role in our department was something of a strange one. I was one of the unlucky few designated to provide a contact point for the lesser members of the Dragon's Guild. Hence a lot of the day was spent rushing backwards and forwards between areas and the little time I did have was devoted almost entirely to historical research. That and weapons training, of course. At least, however, when I finally left the huge oaken doors that led to the Guild headquarters I was free of responsibility.

At least for the most part. I was still a pokémon trainer, after all.

"Marius, mind leaving this for later?" I moaned, trying my very best to hurry through the busy streets of Sector Alpha at rush hour. Not a difficult problem when you had a mad mob of pokémon following you, especially when one of them was Thunderblast and had an unfortunate habit of rushing ahead and tripping the crowds over by accident given her unwavering belief that they should move out of the way for her. Still, some distractions I could have done without, especially those involving a very restless Dratini who had recently grown bored of rallying behind the worthy cause of the moment and was focusing his intellect closer to home.
"Ade. If we do that then it will be all to easy to keep repeating the same lines over and over. 'Later' is a concept that conveniently keeps moving its boundaries further and further away. Now let me please repeat what I've been attempting so desperately to get across to you for the past ten minutes, hm?" My Dratini was sporting the same look his adoptive father, Milliardo, usually wore when he had just set upon being even more annoying and sarcastic than normal in order to get attention. It was a look that set alarms ringing in my head that screamed 'Ade, brushing this one aside is going to be more trouble than it's worth.'
"Okay, Marius. I'm listening."
"Good. Well then. I'm beginning to worry a little about the whole training schedule we have going here. If I may be blunt, I feel that you've become so obsessed with training yourself that you're starting to neglect the training of your team."
"Face it, Marius, most of you can probably train yourselves far better than I can train you and those who can't I probably wouldn't want to put in a risky situation in the first place."
"But then we get into the whole topic of the trainer-pokémon bond and how important that is. Raise us to be as independent as you desire, Ade, I have no problem with that. But please don't make such assumptions as to think any of us are happy to be totally autonomous. It defeats the whole purpose of your being the trainer for a start." Here Marius nimbly avoided a toppling trendy type that Milliardo, following close behind, took rather cruel delight in stomping over with all the force he possibly could. "I think maybe we've grown to take each other for granted a little. That shouldn't happen, Ade."
"No. It shouldn't." I hated to say it but Marius' words stung me more than I cared to admit. He was spot on, of course. We did take each other for granted. "I'm sorry. I guess life's just catching up with me. I wish I had the free-roaming spirit I used to but I don't." I shuddered to myself. Sometimes it felt like I was becoming the boring sort of person I had always maintained an 'if I ever get like this shoot me' stance upon. Sometimes my day really did go 'wake up, go to work, come home, eat, watch TV, sleep, repeat ad nauseum'. Even when there were vast expanses of mountains and grasslands to explore just half an hour away from the city boundaries. Even when a day's travel (or ten minutes of sucking up to Sindel and half a second's Teleport) would have taken me to the greatest range of territories known to man. There were still peaks within Caledor yet to be conquered. There were still nooks and crannies in the forests of Avelorn that needed investigation. There were still areas in the plains of Ellyrion that begged to be raced across. Where was the Ade who would have just stuffed his team into pokéballs, rented a motorbike and magnetically been attracted to the nearest trouble spot? Still in there somewhere, it seemed, if the nagging feelings in my psyche were anything to go by. "I've got... I've got a home. I've got responsibilities."
"And carry on at this rate and you'll have a picket fence, a red saloon car, a dog named Fido and 2.4 children," Milliardo scoffed. "I don't know about you but I'd rather that didn't happen. Not least of all because I dread to think what that point four of a child is going to grow up like."
"Hey," Beckham interrupted, "He might not have two children and point four of a child you know! He might have two kids who were 1.2 children each. Like, they both have three arms and two heads or something."
"Okay, Ade, it's decided." Milliardo rounded upon me. "Snap out of this rut now or you're going to be the father of Zaphod Beeblebrox in duplicate. Becks said so and he's always right."
"Am I?"
"No, you're never right but don't interrupt me when I'm talking crap! How would you like it if I did it to you? You wouldn't be able to speak ever!" My Umbreon shot his Wartortle friend a dirty look. "Ade, seriously for once, I'm with Marius here. We gotta do something as a team for once instead of as a bunch of independent friends."
"Welll... I guess we can afford to take a week or so out and travel for a little while like we used to," I mused. "Once all this crap with the Crimson Blades is over. Next time Soo goes off to visit her family I'm staying here and we'll see what kind of trouble we can get into. In the meantime... seeing as somebody was complaining about our training schedule how about a spot of sparring over at the MTU building?" The Mercenary Trainer's Union. Another department of the Dragon's Guild that hardly anybody realised was part of the Guild at all. Hell, not even I had known that until joining the Guild myself. Still, they were more than happy to provide free training in times of relative peace so who was I to care who they reported to in the end? "You up for it, Marius?"
"As long as you don't waste half of the day chatting to Gina then most certainly." My Dratini nodded. "I feel rather inclined to test my skills today, actually. Lead the way, Ade."

As it happened today's visit for a quick sparring session was slightly different than normal. Usually upon confirming my arrival I would be greeted by my friend and sparring partner Gina Williamson, a blue-haired, glasses-wearing woman in her early twenties whose skills as a trainer were only surpassed by her truly mind-boggling inability to organise herself. This time, however, the trainer who greeted me at the modern, clinical reception was slightly different.
"Good afternoon, Lord Umbreon." God, how I hated being called that! It had been rather funny for the first day or two but now it was just annoying.
"Afternoon." I nodded to the woman in front of me. She was tall and lean, possibly in her early forties with long, dyed blonde hair tied back in a long plait. She was dressed in black leggings, boots and matching vest and if it weren't for the dark blue cloak emblazoned with the Dragon's Guild insignia she would have looked almost assassin-like in her attire. "Is Gina not around?"
"She's taking a break at the moment," the woman replied calmly. "Her last job she took a few bruises on so I asked her to stay home and recover. We're going to need all our people in top form until these Crimson Blades have been taken care of. In the meantime, however, I'd be more than happy to spar with you in her place."
"Aren't training sessions a little below your station, Lady Banette?" That was the title of the woman I was speaking to. Lady Banette. Overall head of the MTU. I had sat at a few meetings with her before and she had always struck me as being an amiable sort, albeit a touch too business-minded for my liking. Still, I suppose that's what being in charge of a skyscraper's worth of mercenaries does to you.
"In our line of work even management has to get its hands dirty," Lady Banette smiled. "Besides, I'd be honoured to battle a trainer with your track record."
"Well..." I mused upon this for a moment. I had to admit, it was sort of flattering to be told something like that from a trainer with Lady Banette's reputation. And, although I would have had far more fun battling with Gina, was it not true that I wasn't actually here for a fun time? "Okay then. Guess it's not every day you get to spar with someone as high up the ranks as you are."
"I knew you'd be up for it," the woman smiled with remarkable warmth. She gestured with a well-toned arm in the direction of a large set of aluminum double doors with a pair of windows set into each side. It looked like the entrance to a medical centre or something. "The room I had in mind is through there. Go right ahead. I'll be with you in a moment."

As it turned out the arena in question was a setup unlike any I had ever seen before. Well, almost. I had actually seen an arena like this once in my lifetime, although that had been such a minor altercation I barely remembered it. The battling arena was raised about three feet in the air, a large circular pedestal of sorts. Around this was a wire fence that completely enclosed the battle field on all sides. The entire effect was akin to a cage match in profession wrestling.
"It's not a bad concept, is it?" Lady Banette grinned upon seeing my surprised reaction. "Hardly ever used outside of back-alley gambling, though, which is a shame. Restricting the space available to move like this makes for quite an interesting match."
"Interesting?" Marius rolled his eyes. "Hardly. Although I must admit to finding the challenge of winning this match without recourse to my Hidden Power a rather tantalising one."
"Marius, I'm sure you'll do fine, and don't be so stubborn as to not call upon that if things start going wrong."
"Do you really expect me to be so foolish as to forget that, Ade?"
"No, but I expect you ignore it. You were raised by Milliardo and Pandora, after all." I patted my Dratini on the head before watching him clamber into the cage via a small hatch in one side. I turned my attentions to Lady Banette. "So what are you going to use?"
"Well, your Dratini seems pretty young still so I might use a pokémon I'm just starting to train myself. It ought to make things reasonably close." My sparring partner of the moment's slender fingers reached into a pocket that I didn't even realise existed, pulled out a monochrome pokéball and tossed it into the cage. It burst open upon contact with the floor, spilling its contents onto the floor in a flash of brilliant light.
"Mag! Magby!"
"Eh?" I had to admit to being surprised. A Fire type would have been the last thing I would have expected a trainer of Lady Banette's stature to use against a Dragon type! There must have been more to the little red pokémon than it first appeared or she simply wouldn't have put herself at such an immediate disadvantage. "Marius, watch out. That thing's probably tougher than it looks."
"Calm yourself, Ade," my Dratini smiled. "I know perfectly well that appearances can be thoroughly deceptive. I'll be sure to take every precaution necessary." Here Marius turned his attentions to the Magby. His eyes narrowed. "Okay. Why don't you show me just what you're capable of?"

FIGHT!!! L8 Dratini v L8 Magby!

Okay then, Marius thought to himself. Best start off small. Just ascertain my opponent's strength for now. The real match-clinchers can come later.
"Here I come, ready or not!" The Magby really didn't give Marius much of a chance to pull off his strategy. Already it was rushing towards him, trying very hard to strike with a Mega Punch designed to cause a great deal of damage straight away. Fortunately a combination of the creature's short arms and the fact it had given Marius warning of the incoming attack made the punch very easy to dodge.
"That was rather foolish of you," Marius commented, using the opportunity to coil around his opponent and constrict, crushing the Magby within his increasingly powerful grip. He wasn't a baby these days, in fact in physical terms the Dratini equivalent of adolescence was well and truly kicking in; as a result his Wrap was quite capable of causing serious injury when used at full force. Right now, however, the Dratini was simply making a point. "I wouldn't announce my attacks again if I were you."
"Get off me!" the Magby shrieked, evidently in too much discomfort to properly register what Marius was saying.
"Leave yourself open and you pay the price," Marius commented calmly, tightening his grip on his opponent. Briefly his subconscious mind recognised how cold-hearted that must have sounded, although any glimmer of pity died down quickly when he contemplated the nature of battle itself. It was a cold-hearted business in the main. Again he tightened his grip, his mind resolute now that he had got the inner struggle over and done with.
"Marlon! Flamethrower!" Lady Banette called over. With split-second reflexes the Magby spat a large torrent of flame into Marius' face. It didn't hurt much – his dragon-like skin afforded him natural resilience to heat anyway – but it stung enough to break his concentration and release the Magby from his grip. Almost at the same time as this happened his opponent struck again with a Mega Punch, this one actually finding its target and catching Marius a harsh blow to the face. The Dratini reeled backwards, surprised by the sheer force of the blow. "Good boy!" Lady Banette called over to her Magby. "Now follow that up before he can recover!"
"Too late." The thing with Marius was that his brain seemed to operate on double time. He wasn't thrown easily, especially not by a single punch. So as the Magby rushed forward to follow up its punch he was ready for it. He concentrated hard, following his opponent's moves to the most minute detail. He saw it prepare an attack. He saw it about to strike. And he dodged. Not just by ducking out of the way, but by contorting himself so that the pokémon missed by miles. Yes, Detect had been his salvation on more than one occasion! "By the way, you move a lot faster than I had expected. I think I ought to do something about that otherwise it may become something of a problem." Sparks began to fly from the Dratini,a terrible electrical charge building up inside his body that soon launched itself at his opponent, causing the Magby to cry out in pain and stumble slightly. It raised it's head, glared in Marius' direction, took a step forward...

And stopped. Thunder Wave had done the job perfectly. Now it was time to actually start hitting hard.

"Damn you!" the Magby managed to splutter, grunting in exertion as it tried to force its semi-paralysed body into some sort of movement.
"This is a battle. This is how it goes. Sorry." Again Marius caused the sparks to fly from his body, only this time they came out in a huge surge of visible electricity that snaked towards his opponent and struck hard. By now the Magby was looking more than a little worse for wear. "Apologies, but I really ought to call an end to this match now. It's been... an experience." Marius narrowed his eyes, his gaze fixed firmly upon his opponent. And then he vanished. All of a sudden the Magby gave a cry of surprise and found itself being slammed into the side of the cage by an unseen force. Unseen, that is, until the moment of impact. Whereby it became obvious that this force was none other than Marius. Somehow he had managed to move forward at such a speed that he had become all but too fast for the human eye to follow.
"Well, well..." Lady Banette mused as the two pokémon landed from their position practically embedded in the steel mesh. It was quite obvious that her Magby was well and truly out for the count after sustaining such a ferocious blow. "Not only are you lucky enough to own a Dratini, but you're also lucky enough to own one with Extremespeed. I'd hang on to that one if I were you, Lord Umbreon. He's quite a catch."
"Don't I know it!" I grinned, letting Marius out of the cage so that Pandora could embarrass him by making a remarkably cringe-inducing motherly fuss over him. Indeed. That Dratini really was one of a kind.

Marius wins!
Marius grew to L9!
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Old 06-06-2005, 11:51 PM   #135
TheBlueAvenger
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Hey, I would like two things.

1) An extension for the new scenario.
2) A random battle for Maza, my (soon-to-be) level 12 Abra, from the Sports Breeding System thing. *pays 7 stamps*

Thanks!
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