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Puredark006

Choice, a Pokemon Shifters RP

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Jack stepped in the gym with Gogurt quickly behind them as Anhew hung back with Cedric. They quickly glanced at Allison as she stated her name before they stated theirs. Jack was a bit disappointed that Allison was using two of her Pokemon. They were hoping to get some training in with Gogurt, but it looked like it would have to wait. Taking out one of their Pokeballs and sent out a certain honeycomb Pokémon.

 

"About time," Regina huffed before looking around. "Oh great, a battle. I'm so excited! Not!" Jack observed the Pokemon that Driemen had sent out. Two Haunters and a...What was that? It was small, flat and very black. Maybe it was a good idea to send out Regina instead of Gogurt first. While the lion one used Snarl on the Haunter on the left, the winged one used Rock Throw on the Salandit.

 

"Use Air Slash on the Haunter on the right," Jack said calmly. Regina rolled her eyes before letting loose an Air Slash on the Haunter she was facing. Gogurt stood next to Jack, waiting patiently for his turn and when it may happen.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Chompers watched as Driller came up from the ground and hit the small brown one with his entire body. “Try using your Glare attack on the winged one,” Chompers grunted, not really knowing what to do. He was uncomfortable with it flying and then suddenly dropping altitude for the brown one to use an attack on Aster. Driller nodded before the little serpent darted out and had to really look up to use his attack on the really big Pokemon. How he got himself into these things was beyond him.

 

“Don't use Dig on the winged one,” Feathers muttered in Chompers’ ear. “It's a flying type meaning ground type moves like Dig will have no affect.” Chompers took that into consideration before he debated what his next course of action would be. Of course, part of him wanted to just shift and just wreck the two Pokemon, but he knew that wouldn't be allowed.

 

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Zoey was still in a sour mood. "I'll just 'explore' around," Zoey said, still glaring daggers at Lambert. As the rest went to go to the Pokemon Center, Zoey went another way. She would have felt sick had she stayed and watched the gym battle, know she wouldn't be able to battle. Besides, it was the perfect time to learn more about Phenac City...hopefully. It cooled her nerves a bit as she thought of her supposed hometown. Now where did she need to go? Oh right! A library! She didn't care if anyone followed her or not, but she would be back to the group before the day ends.

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It seemed like nothing interesting was happening for March here. Some people were having a discussion with the gym leader about a pokémon called Noivern, and two of them went to a pokémon center with the gym leader's Lucario to get the Noivern. Not really anything that bothered him too much.

 

Then, the girl who had introduced herself as Zoey, who had been denied permission to partake in the gym battle, suddenly walked away from the group. Interested in what she was up to, March decided to walk after her. "Hey," he said, after catching up to her, "where are you going to?"

 

((Thank you so much Dalek for giving March something to do! <3))

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The Tropius was diving down to complete its attack, and with a hand shading her eyes, Sine could see the glittering of sunlight from the other pokemon's water move. A double whammy -- if it hit, that is. "Aster, use Protect!"

 

A green barrier momentarily flashed around the fossil pokemon to deflect both moves and give Driller an opening to get something in.

 

 

~~~

 

Lambert chewed the inside of his lip, staying quiet and playing along the whole way through while Gaes seamlessly lied through her teeth, as usual. She wasn't digging them deeper in the pit they were already in, but it felt like she was digging sideways. All this charade work was getting a little tiring and he just wanted to put his hands onto his face for thinking it was a good idea to bring Valda along.

 

(Strategically it made sense. Practically...)

 

"Right, yes," he answered, motioning vaguely behind him. "Back at the pokemon center." All they needed to do was claim that Valda ran away to avoid further questioning. He had already begun to back away, eager to get out of this situation. But wouldn't hurt to pick his level right now.

 

"Level two." A gym with a major type disadvantage, but two seemed like a good place to be. And, it might be a good idea to keep Valda and Gaes separated. "I usually do doubles, but I may try singles this time around. Fair warning, though, none of my team really like pokeballs."

 

The reaction of her pokemon when the helicopter was mentioned made Lambert more than a little nervous. Z was right -- they had a mission that he wanted to complete as soon as possible. On the other hand, they could still fit in some contest time since he promised Gaes a few days ago. Anything to delay the supposed crazy ride that they were going to have to take sooner or later.

 

The helicopter death ride was still a while away so, first things first: Tae's Lucario would definitely give them trouble with their Noivern shuffle, but he had to trust that it was only acting as a guide, not a supervisor.

 

~

 

Valda gave a fair enough warning about the fighting pokemon's abilities, right before she soundlessly slipped away. If the Lucario gave him a questioning look, he'd shrug and act like she vanished when he wasn't looking. As an extra precaution, he tapped his Dusk ball and sent out Qrow as a cheap distraction right before entering the pokemon center.

 

The Noivern was waiting inside by the time they had arrived. Lambert held his breath, hoping that the next few moments would go smoothly as to not arouse more suspicion. "Let's go," he echoed. "No point in staying here longer than we have to."

 

He did not comment on her shallow acting on the way back. One glare at his Honchkrow stopped him from commenting, too.

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To be honest, Rhapsody had zoned out around the time when the leader had started asking about whatever a Noivern was. Too much talking, too little of anything else, and even that dark mark on a nearby building was more interesting because at least fire had somehow been involved in its creation. Really, if Z hadn’t been right behind him, he’d probably have wandered off by now in search of something better to do.

 

He started paying attention again when Tae released one of her Pokémon, some sort of blue bipedal fox with a black mask and spikes. Wasn’t that the species of the short ass who attacked Pooch back in Kusba? he thought, raising an eyebrow. Ah, yeah, that had been the reason he almost picked a fight with Z and headbutted them. Good times.

 

But that aside, Level 2? Seriously? After they blazed through everything in Vertia’s Gym? Fine, so he had a disadvantage against Fighting, but Gaes was a fairy for crying out loud. If she weren’t capable of absolutely murdering the opposition here, he’d have picked a fight with her long ago, disadvantage be damned. And if Fancy-Ball-Of-Rage was going to go at it too, it sucked almost all the fun out of it. He wasn’t going to back away from a fight just because Lambert wanted to switch him for someone else.

 

Tusk looking curiously at the Lucario as it greeted Lambert and Valda with a small curtsy, crossing the legs and making a gesture as if to sweep back the hem of an invisible dress, gave him an idea though. Too bad Zoey was already stalking off, followed by March. “Don’t be too late,” he called after them with a small wave. Zoey wasn’t dislikeable and he tended to get along with other Pokémon of his types, so even though she was a human, it’d be regrettable if they had to leave her behind.

 

“I’ll bring in enough partners for Doubles but use less if we go for Singles, then,” Tae decided, nodding to herself. “Battleground is on the roof. I’ll have everything ready by the time you return.”

 

The roof… the entrance to the Gym seemed to be the first floor of one of those high buildings that touched the sky. They were going to fight that high? Hell, maybe he would tolerate the weak opponents for the chance to throw someone from up there.

 

He waited until Tae and her Sawk left before softly elbowing Z. “Chances of you pretending to be Fairy’s trainer for the contest while we fight?” he joked.

 

---------------

 

Lucario marched on, the aura readings on the two humans she was escorting telling her they were a bit behind but still visible. This should be simple enough: get them to the Center, check the Noiverns, get them all back in one piece. Then maybe she’d watch the battle and run away before having to board Flying Doom.

 

A sudden shift in the aura’s movements made her look back to see if anything had happened. The guy had let out a Honchkrow, which looked a tad too big and heavy to be perching in a shoulder like that. She was idly wondering how many bench-presses the guy’s muscles could handle before she finally noticed something pretty important.

 

Lady was gone.

 

“Oh, drats,” she muttered, sensors quivering to try to pick her signature out. End of alley, turning, moving fast towards the west. Running most likely. There were too many auras around to tell if she was riding a Pokémon, but the speed was about average for a human.

 

She quickly ran back to where the man and his Honchkrow were. “Center’s ahead, keep going two blocks and turn right. I’ll be right back,” she told the bird, crouching and tensing her legs. She was technically forbidden from doing anything risky unless there was someone else around, but running around for a bit was easy enough.

 

Leaving the man, she ran towards a wall and jumped, bouncing from it to the side of a streetlight, and from there to one of the lower roofs. She stopped for a second to check the location of the woman’s aura before running off again, using the roofs and avoiding the skyscrapers as she pursued.

 

It didn’t take long to catch up, but then something strange happened. There was a screech, followed by wind as a Noivern flew out of an alley. Lucario paused, checking the other Pokémon as it flew away – single aura, no human riding it. But when she tried to get the woman’s readings again, she had all but vanished. And, that Noivern had seemed awfully familiar…

 

What just happened?

 

The Fighting-type quickly jumped back to the street, to the place where she had seen the Noivern take off. Trash, some small Pokémon, and broken bags, but no sign of the woman. No doors or trapdoors or anything that could have taken her underground, either, or tire marks of any sort. And people couldn’t change their auras enough to trick a Lucario.

 

She sniffed the air and immediately regretted it, the strong scent of the garbage almost making her gag. Okay, bad idea. Her only other clue was the Noivern, so she decided to follow that and get out of the alley before she started to stink enough to need a bath.

 

By the time she made her way back to the Center, the man had already arrived, and was walking away from the building followed by the very same Noivern that had flew away earlier. Which, now that she checked, matched Medicham’s description. Hadn’t the humans said it had been a trade…?

 

Lucario narrowed her eyes. Humans weren’t very good at distinguishing between two Pokémon of the same species. If the other woman had seen the same Noivern twice, under different owners… if the one she was supposed to be escorting knew she didn’t have a Noivern to present anymore… Of course. Now everything made sense. Except maybe for the Noivern’s aura resembling the woman’s, but she had no idea what that could mean and this wasn’t the time, since the fugitive was probably trying to leave the city.

 

She was so asking for a Poké Puff from Tae after catching that lady.

 

“You should be alright going back,” she said, speaking mainly to the Noivern and Honchkrow. “Gym’s the tallest building. My apologies for not properly introducing myself; you can ask your trainer later for the details,” she finished, raising her paw and then jumping off, set on finding what she was convinced was the Noivern’s original trainer.

 

---------------

 

It wasn’t that hard to find a deserted place between the buildings where he could return Tusk to his ball and shift. So by the time Lambert and Valda returned, Rhapsody was already in his Hydreigon form, stretching his wings and ready to be relieved of his boredom. Really, the only interesting thing that happened while they were gone was some guy throwing him and Z a Look that he recognized from the first day at Fastfall, when Z had all but dragged him into that 'museum' thing and had started gushing about everything while Rhapsody pretended to be the kid's Pokémon to not pay the entrance fee (it had been mildly boring until he got them kicked out by biting something he shouldn't have bitten. Then they proceeded to enter again with Z being the Pokémon, and he went with it only because he had been told not to go back there).

 

The inside of the Gym was similar to the one in Vertia, in that after the typical entrance with the weird statues there was a door that led to a room with a huge elevator. This one had way too many buttons though, one for each floor and each with a tag indicating whatever was there, the button for the roof resting neatly above all the others. Once pressed, the elevator moved upwards, numbers flashing above the doors until they stopped at 75.

 

Rhapsody waited until the elevator stopped moving before floating next to Lambert. "Changed my mind. Gonna battle your way," he declared, shifting back to his human form right before the doors opened.

 

The roof was massive, the chain fence surrounding it doing nothing to stop the strong wind that blew at such a high altitude. The floor was grey with white paint depicting the usual battleground motifs that had been at the other two Gyms, and Tae was standing at the other side of it with both her Sawk and another human with a gray hoodie.

 

"Ah, there you are!" Tae greeted with a wave. "This is Ade; they're going to be the referee. I hope none of you is scared of heights?"

 

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Smart. She got them good.

 

The Protect appeared just in time. Tropicana hit the green barrier first, flying back to put some distance again, followed by the screeching Bead covered in water. The Bibarel bounced once before standing up again, all the brown fur completely on end, and wasn’t able to dodge as the Dunsparce got out of the ground and completed the Dig move, tackling Bead back.

 

"Surf!" Seemed Jeff didn't want to risk being blocked again; he always did have a problem with going too much on the offensive, to the point of simple-mindedness. Case in point, he was now glaring at the Omanyte as if it had offended his Weavile's attack power, which meant he probably wouldn't be thinking about possible strategies anymore.

 

Oh well. Simple, full-attack battles could be fun too once in a while.

 

"Rock Smash on Dunsparce!" he commanded. Tropicana resisted the wave Bead created (she shouldn't be too affected by it, considering her Grass typing), letting it pass her before launching towards the yellow Pokémon and whipping at it with her head. As soon as the attack finished she moved back, and Leonard could see the faint yellow electricity coursing through her wings. Paralysis.

 

This was getting interesting.

 

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Start. "Destiny Bond, Fake Out, Confuse Ray to Pyroar!"

 

Salandit was the first to move, quickly running and snapping his jaws in front of the Pyroar who had moved towards the side of the field - just in time to cut short her roar.

 

Haunter was too slow, though. The Destiny Bond had barely started to form and the Aerodactyl was already releasing rocks over the battlefield, getting both her and Salandit and making them both faint. His second Haunter had moved enough to the other side to avoid the move at least, a yellow light with colored highlights forming between her hands and floating towards Pyroar.

 

Last one to move was the Combee, but Haunter resisted the move. Good; if the Bug-type had been faster, there would have been a flinching chance.

 

Driemen didn't miss a beat as he returned both of the fainted Pokémon and released the next two. "Venusaur, Roserade!"

 

The Venusaur appeared near the Aerodactyl and Pyroar, crouching and ready, while Roserade materialized with a flourish next to Haunter to increase the distance between her and the main offense that was the Fire-type.

 

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

“Snot-green!?!?” Leslar shrieked in indignation, making both his companions wince. “This is the proud Helix uniform, and none shall make fun of it in front of m-gah!!”

 

“Please refrain from violence inside a public building,” Storm chided, Vaila crossing her arms in approval at how quickly Lopunny had gotten outside her Poké Ball to swipe Leslar’s legs from under him.

 

“He’s loud and annoying,” the Normal-type complained, snout raised as she returned to her trainer’s side not looking the least bit apologetic.

 

Storm contained a sigh. He'd had to discover for himself that his position involved the implication he would be the official babysitter of his division, direct superior included, and got reminded of that fact almost daily. "Please excuse them. Eisen Stroms, Executive Assistant of one of Helix's admins and CSO, Sidley. Nice to meet you," he greeted, extending his hand for the teenager to shake.

 

"Vaila. Idiot on the floor is Leslar," the woman added. "Here to challenge the Gym Leader?"

Edited by Puredark006

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Valda was not pleased to see another dragon. She knew there was a reason she didn't like Rhapsody. Her fangs bared in his direction as they all mounted the elevator. What was worse, she had to share an enclosed space with him. She flared out her wings, pressing none too kindly against the others in the elevator, and the fur along her neck fluffed up like spiked hair. As the elevator rose upward, she settled for a low growl in her throat, and side-glared Rhapsody until he suddenly switched back into human form. Valda snorted and rolled her eyes.

 

Her mood shortly improved, however, as the doors pulled apart and revealed the gym floor. Wind howled as it swirled into the open elevator and raked through the fur on her neck and chest. Though it was loud in the large ears propped atop her head, she was glad to have such powerful currents at her disposal. A screech of pleasure burst from the Noivern as she rocketed out from the interior of the elevator and up into the air, unfolding her wings and catching herself on a gale before circling in tight rings above the court. It was an interesting choice of battle space for a gym that specialized in Fighting types and was weak to someone like her. A flicker of suspicion appeared in the back of her mind as she circled, wondering if this roof-top gym held more secrets than she would have initially guessed.

 

---

 

Cass growled as the tiny lizard thing suddenly darted forward and snapped its jaws close to her face. She was forced to abandon the Snarl that was building in her throat at Allison's command, and she couldn't help the jerk of movement away from the Salandit at the sound of the little Pokémon's teeth closing just inches from her head. Rumbling her displeasure, the Pyroar bounced a few feet away on nimble paw pads, only to watch as the stones summoned from above smashed into both the Haunter she'd been targeting and the Salandit that made her flinch. Cass gave a small "harrumph" of disappointment that neither faint was of her doing.

 

That was short lived, however, when Roserade and Venusaur appeared on the court next and Cass's blue eyes lit up in anticipation. She was so focused on preparing herself for the new opponents that she was completely unaware of the swirling multicolored orbs of light until they were suddenly flashing in her face, popping and spinning until she could barely see anything around her. It felt like someone had flashed several cameras into her eyeballs. The Pyroar growled with unease and swayed in place, twisting her head from side to side in search of something solid she could stare at and clear her head. Nothing came, and her vision continued to swim, blurred and completely out of focus.

 

Allison dragged a hand down her face. "Oh great, what's wrong with her now?" she muttered to herself, and just in case she dug out Dagaz's white Pokeball from the backpack and kept it in her hand. Though, recalling a confused Pokémon from the battlefield without a Pokeball would prove to be a challenge. Allison frowned. Hopefully Cass could power through it, or else if she lost the battle... Allison closed her eyes for a second and exhaled loudly. Great. That hadn't even occurred to her before accepting Cass's proposal. "You better pull yourself together," she added under her breath. Looking to her own Pokémon, Allison called out, "Arrow, go for Sky Drop on the remaining Haunter!" After a pause, she continued, "Ca-- uh, Pyroar, Heat Wave on the other two! And don't screw up!"

 

The Aerodactyl gave a bellow of affirmation and pushed himself into the sky with a beat of his massive wings. The speed in which he crossed the field was phenomenal, because only a couple beats later he grabbed the gaseous spirit in his claws and soared upwards in a frightening sharp incline. In that moment, the lioness spun around on her paws, looking for some semblance of a figure she could shoot fire at. She squinted and sniffed the air, but only a vague sense of where the others were located was translated through the haze of confusion. Here goes nothing, she thought to herself, praying none of her flames accidentally hit into Jack's sassy bug Pokémon. A moment later, the Pyroar tensed herself and built up the heat from the pit of her stomach as she sucked in a deep breath. The exhale came forth from her jaws as a massive wave of flames and shimmering air swamped across the field, reaching for the enemy Pokémon to devour them into ashes.

 

 

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Jack was not happy. The battle was going way too easily and they would have much preferred a challenge. Arrow took down two of Driemen's Pokemon so far but they knew he was going wreck the Venusaur and maybe the other, Roserade. They quickly glanced at Allison and gave their signature smile as she had to correct herself. So the Pyroar was indeed Cass, confirming their suspecions about it. Honestly, Cass just so happened to lend Allison her Pokemon and it hand no Pokeball? They were going to have to ask them when they had a moment.

 

They then frowned as the "Pyroar" used Heat Wave. They clicked their tongue. "Regina return," they said and before Regina could utter a word, they returned her. "You're up Gogurt," Jack said and Gogurt bounded forward. Might as well try to get some training in as well as they could with Gogurt. Not like they could do anything, "Pyroar" and Arrow could just easily finish the battle. They looked back to noticed Anhew had gone stiff with worry for her Pokemon. They stuck their hands in their pockets. Why did they agree to this? 'OH MY CELEBI!' Sark screeched in their mind, causing Jack to hold their head. 'THE PYROAR IS A FIRE TYPE!!!! TELL THEM TO PUT THE FIRE OUT!!!' 'Chill Sark,' Jack said while Sark screamed in panic. Well this was likely going to give them a headache later.

 

====================

 

Zoey was surprised as March followed her and even more surprised when Rap of all shifters told her not to be late. "We won't," Zoey called out at the Hydreigon shifter before turning her attention back on March. She was secretly thrilled that March had come along with her. "I was going to go find more information about Phenac City," Zoey said, "However, I'm willing to look around the city if you are." She gave March a smile, before frowning. There was something about Metagross that put everything off. Did she really want to know? How far would she be willing to go to find out? "Sorry, I...there's something about Metagross that I can't seem to remember that puts me off," Zoey said, apologizing for the look she gave March.

 

==============

 

Chompers watched as Driller got hit by surf before getting hit by a move called Rock Smash that sent him flying. "Ow," Driller whimpered as he fluttered his wings. Chompers was concerned for him before trying to think of what to do. "Use Roost!' Chompers commanded. Driller nodded as he fluttered his wings and glowed yellow, regaining his health back a bit. "Smart move," Feathers muttered.

Edited by Raptor of Dragons

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"Protect!"

 

As the Pyroar attacked, the green energy of Protect's sphere formed over Venusaur. The flames crashed against it and divided, leaving scorch marks in the rug as they raged towards Roserade, who crossed her arms in front of her as some semblance of a shield before being engulfed by them.

 

The red band around Roserade's neck released a faint glow and dissolved, leaving the Grass-type barely conscious but still able to battle.

 

Haunter was still in the grip of the Aerodactyl, unable to make a move even if he wanted to, so Driemen didn't give it an order. He had been neglecting the third Pokémon, but it had been switched for a Grass-type; right now, the priority was to cripple the powerhouse. "Sleep Powder!"

 

Roserade straightened up, only wobbling slightly before aiming her red bouquet at the Fire-type, unleashing a flurry of green spores.

 

 

Cedric pressed his head against Anhew's side. "Don't worry, Gogurt will be fine. And even if he gets hit, I guarantee a single trip to the Pokémon Center will leave him good as new," he reassured.

Edited by Puredark006

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"Oh well, I'm sorry then..." March said, hoping it wouldn't sound rude, "I hope you don't mind if I stay with you, though, as I don't really have anything else to do."

 

Realizing that he was still wearing sunglasses, he took them off so Zoey could now see his red eyes. He clipped them to the hem of his shirt, where they would probably be hanging for a while.

 

"I would be fine with either option, I would really appreciate anything that gives me a better idea of where I am. Because quite frankly, I still have no idea. And... maybe you might be able to teach me how to shift? I remember one of my moves was Magnet Rise, and I would love to hover through the sky like that."

 

If she couldn't or didn't want to, he'd be fine with that. There was just something bothering him in that he knew he was able to do these amazing things, but didn't know how to. But it could wait for now; getting a better understanding of where in the world he actually was would be nice as well.

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(just to get this back up and rolling)

 

Jack was immediately happy that the Venusaur had protected itselft from the flames and that the Roserade was still barely conscious. “Gogurt! Use Tackle on the Roserade!” they commanded, knowing that Arrow would most likely take care of the Venusaur before they would get a shot in.

 

Gogurt nodded, before springing forward to tackle the Roserade, while dodging the green spores in the process. They took a quick glance at 'Pyroar’ who was now under the effect of the Sleep Powder.

 

Anhew tried to calm herself down, even with Cedric trying to sooth her, she just couldn't help but worry about Gogurt. She wished desperately to talk back to the nice Pokémon, but she couldn't for fear of someone finding out their secret.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

“I don't mind at all,” Zoey said smiling at him. She tilted her head at him. This guy was still fairly new at shifting? “Well, if it's shifting you need help with,” she said. “I can help, but we have to do it away from public eye.”

 

She rubbed her head. “Now, as to where you're at,” she addressed. “This is the Lamorak Region, more specifically, you're in Fastfall City.” Zoey took a quick look around as they walked. “Now, which do you want to do first, learn how to shift or do some information about where we are?”

 

 

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Kim

 

Snickering as the loudmouth was knocked to the ground by a... whatever the Pokémon was, Kim turned his gaze towards the man in the lab coat. "Helix?" The boy paused. Wasn't he supposed to hunt down Team Helix? Eyes following the offered hand, Kim looked back up at Eisen without shaking it. "Ah, no. I'm not here to challenge the Gym," he answered, glancing over at Vaila.

 

"I've never heard of Helix. What do you guys do?" Kim questioned. He didn't know how he should go about destroying their research, or if he even should - rules or no rules.

 

Emil

 

"Are you sure we should have left them alone?"

 

"No."

 

"Then why did you leave?"

 

Emil frowned, shifting his yellow gaze upon the Luxio. "We needed to keep moving," he stated in reply. "Besides, Sine and Chompers will be alright. They wanted to battle, I did not. And we move on," Emil said, shrugging his shoulder. "I think we're almost to the town."

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March smiled at Zoey when she replied rather positively to his apologies. "I'd imagine." He said as Zoey mentioned they'd have to move away from other people if they were going to shift. It was fairly clear to him by now that it wasn't the most common of sights.

 

Now it was up to him to decide which of the two options they would be going for... personally he would prefer learning to shift, but Zoey was originally planning to find information on the area and he didn't want to be much of a bother, so he thought it would be better to go with that.

 

"Let's start with trying to find more information about this place. I'd also like to know more about it!"

 

He started running ahead of her, then slowing back down in pace as he realized something.

 

"So, uhm... where do we go?"

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"Mainly, research on Biology and Computer Science," Storm explained, lowering his hand without taking offense. They weren't nearly as well-known as Silph or Devon, so he wasn't surprised that a normal trainer wouldn't know about them. "To summarize, I'm in charge of coordination between members, and Vaila and Leslar work on the field."

 

"We're currently looking for a certain Pokémon," Vaila added, Lopunny continuing to glare at Leslar as the man stood up. "Absol. Quadruped, white fur, dark blue face, tail and claws. Has a blade growing out from its head. Have you seen any around?"

 

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The Beedrill buzzed angrily, stinger digging into the Tauros' side as the Bug-type used Poison Jab. Tauros bellowed, tails whipping against each other, not stopping its charge but turning just enough to smash the side under attack against a tree. The hit disoriented the Bug-type for a few seconds, more than enough time for the bull to charge.

 

I tried running away. You were the one who came after me. This is deserved.

 

Beedrill got wedged in the space between the horns. It tried to stop the other Pokémon, stingers in its arms burrowing in the Tauros' mane as it tried a Twineedle, but it was no use. Tauros smashed against a tree, the hit enough to sap the Bug-type of the rest of its strength, and still didn't stop until it ran out of the forest and tripped, both bodies heavily hitting the ground.

 

Tauros got up in shaking legs. Crazed black eyes moved erratically as it gazed from the limp body to the still trees to the only things that were moving, two shapes, one about half its size and the other vaguely resembling a human.

 

There was a small pause as Tauros exhaled purple bubbles. Then, with another bellow, it charged.

Edited by Puredark006

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Kim

 

"Oh, so you're just a babysitter then," Kim said, a little disappointed. Biology and Computer Science? "These two do all of the real work?" he inquired, nodding towards Vaila and Doofus. "Do you want any help? Maybe I can find you an Absol," Kim suggested, shifting his weight to his heels. Maybe I can find out about Helix and figure out why I need to destroy their research. What's so important about biology and computers?

 

Emil

 

"What's that noise?" Nix questioned, pausing. Their ears swiveled toward the strange sound as their tail twitched, nose scenting the air. Emil stopped walking, looking in the direction of the forest boundary, a frown touching his lips. Hardly a moment later, a brown and tan form burst out from the line of trees, tripping and tumbling to the ground. A Beedrill fell from the Tauros' horns, laying still where it hit. "Uh oh...," Nix breathed.

 

Something purple bubbled from the Tauros' nostrils as its gaze seemed to focus on Emil and the Luxio. Suddenly, the Pokémon bellowed, its powerful legs moving to propel its body forward. "Oh censorkip.gif..."

 

Why was it always a giant Pokémon charging at him?

 

"Emil! Look out!" Nix shouted, sprinting forward a-

 

A yell startled the pair as a small, blue shape tackled the Tauros in a Take Down. Landing on its feet, it started sprinting towards the pair. "Run!" it ordered.

 

Thinking quickly, Emil returned Nix to their Poké Ball, throwing Rook out before taking the second to shift. "Quick, jump on," he instructed, looking over the petals around his neck as Rook and the Nidoran climbed onto his back. He saw the shock and confusion in the smaller Pokémon's expression but no one had time to sit and ask or answer questions. "Hang on!"

 

He began at a sprint, the Tauros already getting to its feet to shake off and pursue.

 

[streamlined battle events to be summarized.]

Edited by Narvix

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Accurate, since 'Everyone's Mother' wasn't an apt job description. But still. "Storm also works in projects himself as a programmer, at levels that field workers like us can't even begin to understand. They're different jobs," Vaila mentioned.

 

Also, anyone who dealt with the likes of Coral on a daily basis deserved her respect.

 

"In any case, if you'd be willing, your help would be appreciated," Storm said. "I have to return to HQ now, but Vaila and Leslar can straighten out the details in my stead."

 

That said, he deposited the Natu on top of the stacked boxes, making sure his hand was still in contact with the green bird. "It was nice meeting you. Goodbye," he excused himself, nodding at the trio before the Natu used Teleport, the boxes and its trainer disappearing from the Center.

 

Leslar huffed, crossing his arms. "As if we need help."

"Should I remind you of your battle yesterday?" Vaila casually commented, making Leslar immediately shut up. She took out her phone and tapped on it a few times, bringing up an photo of a random Absol. "This is the Pokémon we mentioned. Say, what's your name, trainer? You never introduced yourself," she said, passing her phone to their new temporary partner.

 

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Driemen had to say, this battle was intense in its own way.

 

With the Pyroar confused and asleep, the tides were turned. Aerodactyl's Ice Fang on Venusaur failed to trigger the freezing effect, letting the Grass-type strike back. After the Heat Wave, Roserade only had enough time to use Magical Leaf before being defeated by the Skiddo, but by then the Aerodactyl was weakened enough.

 

His last Pokémon was Salazzle, and like he planned, he got an extra turn to prepare her Nasty Plot thanks to Venusaur's Protect.

 

The Skiddo was smart to wait until Protect vanished to use Razor Leaf, but the typing weakened the attack, even after what he assumed was Sap Sipper's boost. And after Venusaur defeated the Aerodactyl, Salazzle did the same with the Skiddo.

 

The next two Pokémon were the shiny Fennekin from back at the bar and a Zangoose. The Fire-type got defeated rather quickly due to a Sludge Wave, and the Zangoose would have too if it hadn't used the Pyroar's asleep body as a shield to absorb some of the damage. As it was, it took advantage of its borrowed time by attacking and defeating Salazzle with a single Slash.

 

Only Venusaur left, and the other side took out the Combee from before again. Venusaur put the Zangoose to sleep, but the Pyroar chose that moment to wake up and use her flames again - and being part Grass-type, Venusaur didn't stand a chance.

 

He returned Venusaur with a smile on his face. After using stronger Pokémon than Level 2 allowed, TM and Egg moves, and even held items, the opponents had won. That Pyroar especially was several levels above all the others in strength; if they had more Pokémon like that, then this could work after all.

 

It was worth the risk.

 

"Congratulations on your victory," he said, clapping thrice. "You hereby get my permission to enter the forest, as per our previous agreement. And as an extra, the two of you get the rightful prize for defeating my Gym."

 

He picked up the two boxes on the table and approached the trainers, holding them open for them. On each was a badge - its shape that of a martini glass with a red drink umbrella, full of purple liquid emanating a waft of smoke - along with the prize money and TM. "You each get a Vermouth Badge, along with 3000P and a Poison-type TM - the left one has Sludge Bomb, and the right one has Toxic. Pick whichever you wish."

 

 

 

Cedric flickered his tongue against the tiny girl's cheek as her Skiddo went down. "Gogurt got defeated. But he did really good! And like I said before, one trip to the Pokémon Center and he'll be up and about," he said, trying to cheer up Anhew. In a way, it was a luck that he had his tail full with that; otherwise, the appearance of a Zangoose of all things might have been enough to get him to interrupt the battle to tear the white ferret a new one.

 

But, he couldn't. Him and Driemen had been through this way too many times: no matter how much he despised Zangooses, no matter how much he wanted to go against every single one of them, if Cedric did anything that would bring trouble to his trainer because he couldn't control his 'must murder this particular species' instincts he was getting grounded. Literally. By way of King sitting on top of him. And no one wanted that. So he grounded his teeth and didn't make a sound as the ferret went on to survive the whole battle, even though it got put under a Sleep Powder by the end of it. At least it got returned to its ball then, and Cedric could breathe normally again.

 

"Don't worry. We can ask your friends to help get you on my back, and if they do, I can carry you until Gogurt recovers," Cedric offered.

 

"Cedric." Driemen called his name then, and he snapped to attention. "Go with them, and tell Alvah they're all allowed to pass. Come back after that."

 

"Yes Boss," he nodded, pressing his tail against his forehead briefly to show he understood. Driemen raised an eyebrow, and Cedric remember that, unlike the oddball group, his trainer couldn't understand what he said. Oops. He might have gotten too accustomed to speaking up lately, having to comment on the battle for Anhew and everything.

 

Luckily, Driemen didn't comment, or took the hissing as meaning something offensive. Thank Arceus. "Would that be all? Or are there any more questions you have for me?" The Gym Leader asked.

 

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Its trajectory being moved by the surprise Take Down, Tauros rammed against a tree instead of its target, leaves shaking and falling from the force of the impact. It shook itself, eyes instantly fixing on the fleeing figures, breath forming more purple bubbles as it pursued them with a roar.

 

It didn't notice the change from Pokémon to human, too absorbed in its rage and the need to attack everything that was moving. As it got near, attacks from the back of the fleeing target made it lose its footing twice, each time being met with a counter in the form of Earthquake. The second time, the shaking ground made the fleeing Pokémon trip, the two shapes on top of the green form falling to the ground too.

 

Stomping its front leg into the ground, it charged with Facade.

 

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

The Dunsparce recovered energy with Roost, while the Omanyte went full-offensive with Rollout. Jeff was switching between Surf and Waterfall - probably taking advantage of Bead's speed to try to get the flinching chance.

 

The highlight of the fight (at least for Leo) came at the very end, when the Omanyte's third Rollout finally took out his Tropius. He called her back with a small chuckle (she had done remarkably well for a Pokémon who only knew HM moves), which earned him a nasty glare from Jeff. "How come you're down already?" the taller man had hissed at him.

 

Promptly followed by Bead getting knocked out too by the Dunsparce's Headbutt.

 

"Well, I didn't see you lasting much longer, Jebediah," he commented with a grin. The murderous look Jeff's eyes flared with was so strong, Leo shifted his position in case the other man flipped the witnesses off and resumed his attempts of trying to stab Leo in the eye.

 

Granted, at this point of their lives neither of them would really murder the other, but people who didn't know how they interacted tended to overreact when blood started flowing. And he didn't really want to deal with police calls.

 

Luckily for him, before Jeff could do anything, the big man called Charlie suddenly started running. Curious, Leo's gaze followed him, and he saw something behind them - a Tauros attacking a Meganium and two other Pokémon on the ground. Jeff noticed them too, and took out one of his Poké Balls.

 

Leo stopped him, arm extended in front of Jeff. "Let me see how they handle it first," he whispered. His partner glared at him, but didn't make a move to call out his Pokémon, so Leo smirked and turned to watch. If the trainers were defeated, they'd simply step forward before the Tauros could do any severe damage.

 

At first, it looked like the Normal-type would win. A single Earthquake and every Pokémon that was out got defeated, excepting the Meganium and Charlie's Archen. Sine switched her fainted Omanyte with an Onix - one she had gotten not too long ago, judging by how it ignored her order and used another move. That'd have been interesting to fight against.

 

His train of thought got interrupted very, very abruptly, when the Tauros used Giga Impact on the Meganium, who after the hit got surrounded by a white light and turned into the human who had been with the group before.

 

He froze. To such a level that if Jeff had chosen that moment to try to kick him on the head, he wouldn't even have reacted. A Ditto? No, there was no reason why one would transform into a human after being defeated. It looked more like evolution, but he had seen the man, Emil, before - a human evolving into a Meganium, who evolved back into a human? That wasn't possible. But Sine was now shouting "I KNEW IT" while pointing at the fainted human, and the trees parted to make way to a massive Tyrantrum who came from the direction Charlie had come from, and wasn't that man wearing clothes very similar to the Tyrantrum's colors, in the same way Emil's clothes resembled a Meganium?

 

His mind raced as several puzzle pieces materialized, and slotted perfectly into the image he had been trying to build for the past few months.

 

Addis.

 

 

The fight ended not too long after. Tauros managed only another Earthquake that didn't knock out anyone else, and the Tyrantrum suspected to be Charlie ended it when he snapped his jaws around Tauros, throwing it to the ground like a rag-doll. The Normal-type let out a pitiful moo before its eyes closed as it lost consciousness.

 

"What the censorkip.gif," Jeff whispered behind him. Taking a breath, the scarred man stepped forward, eyes locked on the only human left. "What the censorkip.gif," he nearly yelled, emphasis on the swear word as he pointed to the fainted form of Emil, "was that? Is that Charlie???" he added in a near screech, now pointing at the roaring Tyrantrum.

 

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[[Cassandra, Arrow, Dagaz, Regina, Gogurt, and Claw grew stronger from the battle against Driemen! (with Cass getting the biggest boost for being in the whole battle, even though she fell asleep on the later half)]]

[[Allison's and Jack&Sark's items have been updated]]

[[The entirety of Driemen's character sheet has been unlocked]]

 

[[Driller and Aster grew stronger from the battle against Leonard and Jeff! (a moment of silence for poor Bead)]]

 

[[Congratulations, Lifferoad team, for defeating the first Boss! Besides the usual levels, everyone who participated got a boost. (RIP Emil, he will be missed)]]

Edited by Puredark006

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Jack and Sark thought the battle had too close to comfort.

 

Gogurt had managed to finish off the Roserade as Haunter got knocked out as well.That left Venusaur and the lizard looking pokemon. The Venusaur let out an Energy Ball that defeated Arrow. Oh boy.

 

Lizard had used Nasty Plot and they had ordered Gogurt to use a Razor Leaf. It barely did any damage, but it still was something. Unfortunately, the lizard used a move and knocked Gogurt out.

 

Gogurt's last though as he went down was that he failed. Jack nervously glanced back at Anhew before returning Gogurt. They took out another Pokeball and released Claws. Claws looked around, gaining a sense of his whereabouts. He looked over to see a sleeping Pyroar and a Fennekin out.

 

He was lucky that Jack had ordered him to hide behind Pyroar as a shield from the attack. Unfortunately Dagaz fainted before Claws lurched forward and used Slash on the lizard. Luckily his attack made it faint before Claws fell asleep due to Sleep Powder.

 

Jack bit their lip before sending out Regina. Luckily the 'Pyroar’ woke up and used Heat Wave and made the Venusaur faint. They let out a sigh of relief as it was finally over.

 

“Oh come on!” Regina buzzed angrily. “Are you kidding me!? I didn't do nothing that round!”

 

“Good job you two,” Jack praised as they returned their sleeping Zangoose and Combee, before she had a chance to protest. “Man, that was a crazy battle.”

 

They listened to Driemen as he explained what they earned. They went to move forward but realised that their right half wasn't moving. 'Sark?’ Jack asked within their mind. No response. Oh boy. Did they look foolish as they lurched forward, dragging their right leg on the ground?

 

“Ah,” Jack said. “I'll take Sludge Bomb.” They flinched as Anhew finally started crying.

 

“I can't believe Gogurt fainted,” she said sniffling. She hugged Cedric unintentionally, burrowing her head in him. She heard him say something about riding on his back.

 

“I want to ride Gogurt!” she cried into him. She loved her Skiddo with all her heart and it tore her up that he had fainted. She was shaking.

 

“Hey Sweetie,” Jack said, dragging themselves over to her. “You'll be able to ride him real soon, promise.” All Anhew did was whimper and nod slightly, burrowing her face into Cedric.

 

~~~~~~~~~

 

Chompers was glad the battle with them was over. In no way did that feel natural to him. After Aster started using Rollout on the winged one, it had used Rock Smash on Driller once before fainting due to the Rollout. He quickly ended the brown one with a Headbutt. He praised Driller before returning him.

 

He paid no attention to the two guys fighting before he noticed something charging straight at them. A green Pokémon with two others on its back. He looked past them to see a brown Pokémon with horns. He ate a similar Pokémon that sort of looked like this one.

 

Chompers didn't say a word as he ran forward. He ordered Feathers to use a Dragon Breath on it, knowing if she attacked it head on, she would most likely faint. The next thing he knew, the food did something and he landed on this tail.

 

Did Food just make him land on his rear end?

 

Narrowing his eyes, Chompers ran off to shift. He was going to show Food who was in charge. He felt himself get into that tall state where he resides over everything. He quickly stomped on it as a rock Pokemon was attacking it as well. He resisted the urge to tell that one off for interfering. He almost lost his footing as Food used the same attack. With a final Crunch, he decided to drag it along the ground a bit before it collapsed.

 

Chompers stood up, feeling proud as he let loose a roar of victory. After his roar, he finally looked around to see a human passed out in the ground, the two others that were on the green’s back were fairly close. He stood there looking dumbfounded. That was Emil.

 

Feathers was staring way up at him. He then noticed the two males, more specifically Jeff, confronting Sine. Jeff was pointing at him. He stopped down to talk to Feathers. “What did I miss?”

 

“Well,” she said. “Turns out Emil is a shifter and he transformed into a human right in front of Leo and Jeff, making Sine point at him and yell out that she knew it. Then Leo and Jeff put two and two together and figured out you were 'Charlie’.”

 

Oh this was not good. “Can I eat them?” he asked. “CHOMPERS, NO!” Feathers squawked angrily. “Humans are not food!”

 

~~~~~~

 

Zoey smiled at March. “Yeah, we try not to draw attention to ourselves,” she said. She nodded as he said he wanted to learn more about this place before sighing as he started running eagerly. She'd prefer it if she didn't run if she could. She then perked up. “We need to find and locate the local library,” she said.

 

She looked around. “We need to ask around cause I have no idea where it is,” she said. She turned a corner and paused. “Well that was easier than I thought.” She was staring at a building with two Tyranitar statues at the end of these stairs leading up to the building. She stared at the statues. She recognised the Pokémon at least. Not in a good way either. She sighed before ascending the steps.

 

She took a look around the library before going to talk to the clerk. After telling the clerk who they were sent here to do a history project and that she had forgotten to bring paper, she was provided with paper and a pencil she could write with.

 

She then went to the history section and grabbed a few books. Needless to say, it was quite informative. She started writing what she thought was important. The first thing she learned was about the mysterious islands surrounding the place. Zapdos and Pikachu were familiar names to her. Pikachu was the yellow rat and Zapdos was a legendary Pokémon. So wait, they had legendary Pokémon on islands?

 

Highly interesting.

 

She had to pause as she read about the two biggest cities. Fastfall, which she was in right now, and Alquind. She wrote that part down and also the part about John, the former champion who was now a gym leader making her get excited. What was a champion?

 

She picked up another book on which she thought she might have an interest in reading. What she was reading was interesting. An organisation called Fragment had terrorized this region about fifty years ago by kidnapping both humans and Pokémon. Although no one knew what they really wanted.

 

Her breath got caught in her throat as she read that Fragment was taken down by a pair of kids. One of them had the gym leader from Alquind on it. Was that a coincidence? There could have been thousands of Johns out there. She then turned to the page and that's where it got really interesting. Team Helix.

 

She started writing everything she found useful on them. From them starting twenty years ago and them having a couple of branches out there in other regions to their CEO! “Zakiel,” she muttered interestedly. She even wrote down some other stuff, thinking. Sidley Savela and Abel Feldspath, heads of the Computers and Biology departments.

 

She didn't know too much about biology or computers, but someone in the group might. She got the papers together and put them neatly in her bag. She told March where she was going and went over to the other region sections, looking for a specific one. She had to read through the different regions before finally finding Orre in the Hoenn region even though it wasn’t actually located in Hoenn.

 

She sat down and started looking through it. All the names sounded familiar to her. Pyrite Town, Agate Village, Mt Battle, the Tower Colosseum. She felt like it was all there, clawing at her. She continued reading.

 

Shadow Pokemon.

 

She inhaled sharply. Now that was super familiar. A Pokémon who's heart was artificially locked. A Pokémon who wasn't afraid to attack other Pokémon and humans. The ultimate fighting machine. She continued reading to see a picture of a Pokémon. It was a picture of a blue legged dog Pokémon that represented the north wind. Suicune. It had a black aura surrounding it, the quote underneath said the black aura had to be hand drawn by the lady who could only see it until later technology was developed.

 

This information made Zoey almost jump. It sounded so familiar to her. What actually made her jump was when someone slammed a book down. She looked back at the Shadow Suicune, frowning slightly as it all had disappeared. She had lost the moment. Sighing she put the book up and went back over to March. "Ya ready?"

Edited by Raptor of Dragons

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One of the main reasons Tae chose to retire from acting and dedicate herself full-time to Pokémon battles was that, when those moments happened without a script, it felt infinitely more satisfying and unbelievable.

 

The battle started with Croagunk, Heracross, and Timburr on the field, while the two challengers sent out Noivern, Honchkrow, and Houndour. As she expected, the dragon went on the offensive, making Croagunk's Sucker Punch a clean hit - couldn't stop it from knocking out Heracross though, and Honchkrow not only confused Timburr but flew out of the way of the Stone Edge directed at the bird. A pity it got immediately replaced by a Mawile after that display, but then came the silver lining.

 

Timburr hit itself in its confusion, but the Medicham that had replaced Heracross used Ice Punch, and managed to freeze Noivern solid. Not only that, but Croagunk's Poison Jab poisoned the Houndour. With two Pokémon inflicted with status conditions on the field, Medicham in still relatively good health and another Pokémon in reserve, this would have been the perfect moment for a villain monologue. Add in dramatic music, the heroes confidently declaring the battle to not be over yet, and a line about trust between trainers and their Pokémon, and it would have made the ideal climax.

 

Because Noivern thawed itself out the very next turn, taking flight like wrath incarnate and releasing such a massive Hurricane, Tae had to take a step back due to the intensity of the winds. Medicham didn't stand a chance, and it would have been blown off the building if it wasn't for the security fence - Medicham hit against it instead, making the whole thing creak and rattle. Mawile joined in with a Play Rough that looked more like dancing that an actual move, and Houndour finished off Croagunk with enough energy left to survive the poison.

 

Honestly, part of Tae wanted to declare the battle over because no way in hell was anyone topping this turn. It was perfection incarnate. But she had one more Pokémon, and though it'd be in the opponent's favor, rule breaking, even for the sake of drama, was a big no no.

 

The battle ended up quickly after that. Chesnaught countered a Draco Meteor with Spiky Shield, but Noivern's next attack proved too much to handle. And the cherry on top of the cake? One of the guys actually said a one-liner. She actually had to take a few seconds to compose herself after returning Chesnaught (she had an image to maintain, and fangirling about the battle wasn't what one would consider dignified), before smiling brightly at the challengers. "You two were too strong for me. This was a battle I won't easily forget."

 

 

 

"You can be as reckless as you want but don't involve me in this suicide run!!" Pooch had yelled after defeating the Croagunk. They were nearly at the end, couldn't she stand a few more seconds? Jeez.

 

"If you want to come back so badly, do it yourself!" Rhapsody yelled back instead of commanding the next attack. Which she took as 'okay, I'm returning you', judging by how she wasted no time trotting back to where he and Lambert were. Oh well, if he kicked her back there he'd have to put up with an entire day of endless barking, so he went with it and called Bugface next. Which didn't matter at all, seeing how Valda's next attack ended the match.

 

He had to say, it had been more fun than he thought. He could see the appeal of having the Pokémon listen to his every order and wreck chaos on the enemies, thought he still preferred doing the wrecking part himself. "Come on, try complaining about me joining in now," he teased Lambert, playfully elbowing the other man as the Gym Leader picked up two boxes from the referee (when had they gotten those?) and walked towards them.

 

The Fastfall Badge looked to be modeled after a window, its basic shape that of a clear rectangle with a reflective brown border. The main feature were 5 tan ovals in the middle that vaguely resembled a punch, 2 black cracks extending from it towards the borders. "You two have earned the Fracture Badge, along with 6250P each and the Brick Break and Focus Blast TMs. I hope you put them to good use!"

 

Clearly, 'good use' here meant shoving the spoils to Lambert, aka the only one nearby in possession of a bag. Which was what Rhapsody did.

 

He kept the Badge though. Humans seemed to think that the more you had the stronger you were, after all.

 

"That wasn't so difficult," Bugface commented. Pooch, still poisoned, groaned and covered her snout with a paw. The Trapinch was in the middle of pushing her a bit with her head, trying to cheer the Fire-type up, when suddenly both of them got surrounded by a white light.

 

Not two seconds later, on their places were a bigger, fatter Pooch, and a cream-and-green bug thing that Rhapsody would have never guessed was related to the orange blob from before.

 

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[[Valda, Gaes, Qrow and Pooch grew stronger from the battle! (you guys really impressed Tae, good work~)]]

 

[[Lambert's and Rhapsody's items have been updated]]

 

[[The entirety of Tae's character sheet has been unlocked]]

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Cass groaned. After jumping to her feet and spitting out a wave of fire across the battlefield, she still wobbled from the effects of Confusion and staggered unevenly across the court until suddenly her head smacked into the corner of a plush recliner chair. "Ow."The Pyroar huffed her breath and gave herself a great shake--nearly toppling over from the dizziness when doing so-- and sighed with relief as Confusion's grip on her head began to lessen into a dull, throbbing ache. She turned around and squinted at the others until their shapes came into focus. They had won, right? She looked between Driemen, Allie, and Jack, and when the gym leader began to clap, the Pyroar padded over to where Allison and Jack stood. Her body ached like she'd been hit by a runaway train.

 

Allison glanced down at Cassandra and quirked an eyebrow. "Good morning. Sleep well?"

 

Cass scowled up at Allison, and winced when the muscles in the side of her face spasmed with pain. "I feel awful," the pyroar grunted, sticking her tongue out repeatedly when she noticed a bad, sour taste in her mouth. "Ugh, what is that?"

 

"You got hit by Sludge Wave a couple times," Allison responded. As Driemen drew closer, Allison straightened up, and the Pyroar turned away from her "trainer" to trot (as much as a stiff, hung over Pokémon could trot) over to where Anhew sat with her face buried into the Seviper's smooth scales. Her ear twitched; Gogurt was nowhere to be seen, and from the young girl's tears, she could only assume the Skiddo didn't last too long in the battle. Cass snuffed a breath against Anhew's arm and gave a low, gentle purr of reassurance.

 

Allison took one of the badges and then the disc labeled "Toxic" from one of the boxes. She paused, however, when she noticed Jack's odd movement. Her blue eyes narrowed slightly at the sight. Spontaneous unilateral paralysis? They seemed to be aware of it-- how could they not, while dragging one side of their body-- but made no gesture of acknowledgement to the strange and sudden onslaught of it. Allison wondered if this was a regular occurrence, or if they were in need of immediate medical aid. That didn't just...happen. Perhaps they had a stroke. That was an intense battle, but she hadn't seen any other symptoms that would indicate need for medical attention. How very odd. She watched as they hobbled over to Anhew, and decided not to comment on it for now. She would keep an eye on them and see what else developed before intervening. She wasn't a doctor, after all, that she knew of.

 

Allison pocketed the money and placed Arrow's and Dagaz's pokeballs into Cassandra's backpack before shouldering the bag. "We should get going," she said, loudly enough to catch everyone's attention. She glanced at the Pyroar and the other Pokémon still around. "With any luck, the Team Helix members will still be at the Pokecenter when we get there." There was a brief pause, and then, remembering that Cassandra as a human was supposed to be already tracking them down, added smoothly, "I'll join Cassandra while our Pokémon are being healed."

 

Cass yawned wide, and wondered briefly if the Pokémon center would help in healing the wounds she'd received from the gym battle. She didn't have a Pokeball to escape into, though, which meant she might have to just suck it up. But also, she wouldn't be able to hold this form for much longer. She'd need to duck behind a building somewhere and shift back before the rest of them made it to the Pokémon center. The Pyroar huffed a breath and looked over at Driemen. It was too bad, really, that he didn't know she had partaken in the battle herself. Ah well. At least the strange dreams she'd had while under the effects of the Sleep Powder would make up for whatever fantasies she'd had involving him prior.

 

Allison looked over at Driemen. She didn't really know what to do with the badge, and so tucked it into her pocket and said, "Thank you. If we find anything about the ghosts, I'll send word." She'd forgotten the other shifter, Lambert, had given her a phone until she'd felt it in her pocket. Perhaps after they found out more about the Team Helix people at the Pokémon Center, she'd give the other shifters a call to see what was taking them so long.

Not that she cared. At all.

 

 

Cassandra led them out of the gym doors, trying to pretend that the ache in her muscles wasn't slowing her down (it was-- she limped along like a peg-legged pirate). As soon as the familiar red roof came into view, Cass dropped her speed until she came up behind in the last of the group. Allison did not seem to notice, and continued on at a brisk walk, though not too fast that the others couldn't keep up. Cass disappeared behind the Center when no one was looking and shifted when the coast was clear.

 

Allison had just stepped up to the doors when Cass came jogging around the side of the building. She looked like a hot mess, with her crazy amount of red and gold hair mussed around her face and something that looked like dirt--or, something gross at least-- smeared on her cheek. She hastily swiped away the hair out of her face and twisted the ends into a sloppy braid as she greeted them with a breathy, "Hey guys! How'd it go?"

 

Allison rolled her eyes and shoved Dagaz's pokeball into Cass's hands. "Great. We won. Your Fennekin didn't last long, though. We were going to see if Helix is still inside. Did you manage to find them?"

 

Cass cleared her throat. "Uh, n-no, didn't get a chance. Thought I saw them heading off into the forest and went after them, but I got--um-- ambushed by some Pokemon. I'm fine though."

 

"Clearly," Allison said, and the dryness to her tone was unmistakable.

 

Cassandra turned toward the others and smiled. "How is everyone? Sounds like we need to get some of our Pokemon back into tip-top shape. Anhew? Would you like me to take Gogurt to the counter, or do you want to do it yourself?"

 

Allison brushed past the winded redhead and entered into the Pokemon Center. Immediately, she noticed the oddly dressed people talking to what looked like a teenager with hair similar to Cassandra's, only his had more fire-like colors to it. He wore a strange outfit that looked faintly familiar in design, though she couldn't quite recall why. Allison frowned. Whoever the kid was, she would keep an eye on him. But for now she would concern herself with the Team Helix members currently talking to him. Without looking back at Cass, Allison stuck Arrow's Quick Ball into her companion's hand and abruptly made for the small gathering on the other side of the PokeCenter.

 

"Excuse me," she cut in, just as one of Team Helix handed the younger kid a cell phone. "You wouldn't happen to belong to Team Helix, would you?" She tried not to twitch as she plastered on a smile and added, "I'm a big fan of your research. I was hoping you could answer some questions for me, if you have the time." Allison glanced momentarily at the teenager. He looked like a fighter, almost, or someone with an attitude. She pursed her lips slightly and returned her gaze to the young woman in the uniform. "Unless I'm interrupting?"

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Sine held her breath after she called Rollout. It was a gamble and it wasn't a very accurate move, but if she could beat the odds for the first two turns then the battle wouldn't end up taking too long.

 

It all paid off, though, when Aster's rolling shell gained enough speed to smash into the flying green pokemon and knock it out, and Driller ended the suffering of that poor brown one.

 

Before she could give Chompers a proper congratulations and a small victory dance, the sound of hooves hitting the ground drew her attention forward and into the distance, where a Meganium was quickly approaching, a cloud of dust behind it. It was a familiar scene in which there were no winners. You never want to be on the wrong side of a pissed off Tauros.

 

Knowing that running would only aggravate it further, Sine waited until it was in range and ordered a Bubblebeam, which didn't faze the bull much at all. It countered with a stomp and the ground shook. Sine struggled to keep her balance and fumbled to get the Repeat ball to return Aster.

 

Jeff and Leonard weren't doing anything, so she grabbed her other pokeball and sent out her Onix. It hadn't really taken to her nickname yet, and she was sure the rock snake would have eaten her by now if Chompers didn't threaten to dismember it if that happened. Nevertheless, Sine gave it a try. Bind was a good choice, to hold down the Tauros from doing more damage.

 

Onix ended up cussing her out (thankfully Aster wasn't out to hear any of it) and kept its distance with long range attacks.

 

Everything seemed to stop, though, when the fallen Meganium started glowing and its shape turned human that was immediately familiar.

 

"I KNEW IT!!!!!!" Sine yelled. She vigorously pointed at Emil's collapsed form until she noticed Leonard and Jeff were still there, the former giving a dark, pensive stare and the other cursing himself out. Onix gave her a look and then shook its head.

 

That Meganium guy went to unparalleled lengths to conceal his identity, and no one would have been the wiser if he didn't wear that lime green and flowery getup -- actually she and Chompers should probably change out of these clothes as well. Sine quickly calculated the odds of knocking both of them out and running away, perhaps stealing their clothes in the process, but the odds seemed very close to zero, especially since it was obvious they had more pokemon in reserve.

 

Chompers took this time to come crashing in and fling the Tauros like a signature finishing move from the World Pokemon Championships, or a particularly brutal nature documentary. She would have applauded, if she wasn't preoccupied with the aftermath of Emil. Was the poor guy still alive after taking a Giga Impact to the face?

 

She returned Onix to its pokeball to stall for more time and to think about what to say next. The meowth was out of the bag, so to say, but Sine still guarded her own secret. "Well, I guess now you know where the nickname 'Chompers' came from," she admitted with a shrug. The only option now was to downplay the events and wait for all involved parties to calm down (though it was mostly Jeff who needed calming).

 

The Tyrantrum asked if he could... dispose of the witnesses. "Yeah, you can eat them," Sine replied out loud, "but I think they'll just give you a stomach ache... And you'd be coughing out red hairballs for a week."

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Valda had swooped high above the battlefield and rode the currents of wind as they filled the membrane of her wings. She was the fastest of them all-- she could feel it in her very bones. She was wind, she was power, she was fury. The Noivern's piercing eyes glinted in the sunlight as she dropped sharply in a dive at the sound of Lambert's voice. She'd barely remembered that he was posing as her trainer (a thought that made her want to retch with disgust) until the command of "Hurricane!" reached the large, ribbed ears on her head. It was a decent command, as it was one she had been planning on executing anyway. She felt the winds gather around her, ripping at the fur around her neck and around her lithe body. Yet before she was able to loose them, a small black and purple figure suddenly shot upward from the ground and landed a sharp blow to her jaw. The Noivern gave a terrible, head-splitting screech, but the Hurricane had already blasted from her wings to tear through the Bug-Pokemon below. It was knocked out without a chance.

 

A low growl built in the Noivern's throat at the Croagunk as it returned to its place on the ground. It was a nimble Pokemon, that was certain, if it could reach a dragon riding the gale above them. She would have happily disposed of it, had it not been for the next Pokemon to materialize from the gym leader's pokeball.

 

It wasn't the same one-- she could smell it-- but that didn't matter. It was that goddamn Pokemon, the one that made her head hurt when the gym leader had chased her off earlier, and it was going to die. A Medicham, was it? Valda snapped her teeth in its direction. It was going to be charred dinner soon.

 

The fat black bird that had been flying on the winds with her was withdrawn, and the annoying shifter, Gaes, was called onto the battlefield. Valda bristled at the sight of her. She didn't need her help. She didn't need any of their help. A few well-placed Hurricanes and the gym leader's team would be decimated. Too bad Gaes appeared to be part Steel, though. Valda would have liked to throw her off the building with the others.

 

When Lambert ordered another Hurricane, Valda hissed at him and twisted in mid-air with an elegant dive until she'd closed in enough to the Medicham that the fire pooling in her gut could be released in a jet of searing hot flame. It swathed the Medicham in a blaze that would have been pleasant to watch, had the damn thing not leapt up and struck Valda with a punch that made her bones freeze over. She snarled angrily as the ice crystallized across her body, and with a painful thud she fell to the ground, immobile. Hatred burned in her eyes as she stared up at the Medicham from the floor.

 

It burned more than just in her eyes. It burned everywhere in her body like venom. She was going to obliterate that Medicham if it was the last thing she did. Before she knew it, the ice began to melt from her limbs and chest. Her skin and muscles felt numb from it, but now that she was freed from the trap of ice (and oh, how she despised ice!), Valda shot into the sky and screamed out a cry of pure, unbridled rage. The Hurricane that built up from the powerful strokes of her wings exploded out at the Medicham with such ferocity that it was slammed into the metal fence protecting them from falling off the roof of the building. Which really was a waste, because nothing would have been more satisfying than seeing the Medicham get blasted over the edge.

 

The other Pokemon were handled effectively by Gaes and the dog-Pokemon that the other dragon shifter had sent out. Whatever. Valda paid them no mind, though she seriously contemplated using a Boomburst to decimate the rest of them, her party included. Wouldn't that have been fun? However, when the Chesnaught was sent out, Valda bared her teeth at him and let the strength in her body build up until she could feel the meteors just above the stratosphere gather at her will. She bellowed, and the meteors fell to earth as fiery streaks of rock and ice. But the damn Chesnaught hid beneath some sort of shield, and the meteors were rendered useless. Valda snarled again. As soon as Tae's Pokemon lifted itself from under its shield, Valda dipped low and close to blast it in the face with a Flamethrower. To her pleasure, the Chesnaught fell after the hit and the battle was over.

 

The Noivern gave a derisive snort as she glided back down to the field where the others stood. She landed silently, though whipped her tail a few times if anyone got too close for her liking. Both Lambert and Rhapsody received some kind of prize. Valda looked on with disinterest. None of what they were handed looked remotely useful or interesting, and Rhapsody seemed to have the same idea as he shoved everything over to Lambert. What was interesting, however, were the two Pokemon that Valda barely registered as being present until they were both enveloped in a white light and morphed into different beings. Well, one of them did, anyway. The other just grew bigger with a pair of curved horns attached to her head. Valda clicked her teeth at them, unimpressed.

 

"Now we leave, yes?" she demanded, staring intently at Lambert.

 

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Jeff narrowed his eyes at Sine's last comment. "Try it," he snarled, taking out a Poké Ball. "I had Bibarel only for its HM moves. If neither of you could one-shot it, you have no chance against anyone from my actual team."

 

Leo took a deep breath, as if preparing himself for something, and took a few steps forward to place himself between Jeff and the rest of the group. "Now, now, there's no need for further hostility here," he said in a placating tone. Jeff glared down at him - how dare that ass be all calm after seeing a Pokémon turn into the guy from before - and was about to show by example why 'further hostility' would be a very welcomed course of action against his stupid glasses, but then Leo actually turned his back to him to address the girl.

 

He either had a dying wish or he was being serious. And considering his survival instinct had been enough to make him come almost unscratched out of around 20 years of Jeff trying to stab him in his annoying face, it had to be the second one.

 

Leo seemed to think about his next words, eventually settling for neutral friendly. "Judging by how you answered that roar... Sigilyph, I presume?" the redhead ventured.

 

Jeff stared. Now that he mentioned it, the pattern on the girl's clothes did resemble one.

 

"In any case, we're all tired from the battles and we still need to give you your reward for winning our match. How about we all head to the Pokémon Center? I could explain what we were looking for while we all get treatment. And gift you a Max Revive for Emil," Leo added, pulling said item out of his bag to extend it to the girl.

Edited by Puredark006

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The chill air of the roof filled Lambert's lungs and the height they were at, while frightening at first, now exhilarated him. Rhapsody had shifted back in the elevator, seemingly listening to good reason. At least, until he stated that he wanted in on the battle in another way. Lambert went livid, but there was nothing much he could do. Valda looked more than capable enough at tearing through the entire gym, and so his plan was to end this quickly.

 

Of course, the bumps in his plans came when the Noivern didn't quite agree with his targets or his tactics, but she got the job done all the same. He raised both eyebrows, glad to not be on the receiving end of the fire or winds, and lowered his body to avoid getting blown away. After the first pokemon was down and that he was sure Valda was too focused on destroying her opponents, Lambert withdrew Qrow and sent out Gaes.

 

It was around this time that the Noivern ate and ice punch that froze her solid and he winced and uttered a silent prayer. He couldn't switch out since he had no pokeball, and any other touch might knock her back into being human. Maybe he underestimated her resilience, however, when Valda with her burning rage cracked the ice and threatened to blow everyone off the roof.

 

This was a good time to spout his poser phrase. As the wind began to settle he stepped forward and turned his back to Tae, then, while looking over his shoulder, pointed backwards to the battlefield.

 

"The wind... is troubled today."

 

No sooner had he said the words did he feel a part of him die a little inside. It was the high energy of the venue, perhaps, that made him feel like the protagonist of some kind of story.

 

Once the first four pokemon were down Lambert didn't really expect a fifth one in reserve and while Valda was still on full offensive (contrary to his wishes), he ordered Gaes to play defensively so he could gauge the grass pokemon's capabilities. It didn't really matter in the end, though, since the dragon type just burned it to the ground.

 

Rhapsody elbowed him with a cheeky grin and gloated about his usefulness, but Lambert almost felt all the winnings should have gone to Valda for carrying the entire team. He just nodded just to make him feel better. Still, Lambert too had a smile on his face from that close call. His heart was still racing.

 

He took the reward and said his thanks. A third badge, some more spending money, and another few TMs to add to the group -- Brick Break was a classic, while Focus Blast was a powerful special attack. The Hydreigon just shoved all his winnings onto Lambert, which was alright with him.

 

Valda brought his attention back to herself. "Yes, let's go," he replied, "before you end up collapsing."

 

Lambert then paused briefly before actually leaving. "Good job out there," he praised the Noivern. He made a movement to reach out to pat her, before he stopped himself and shoved his hand back into his pocket.

 

 

~~~

 

Sine looked like she was about to say something to defend herself, but her shoulders fell as she breathed out. There was no use in hiding it anymore, and maybe the secret wasn't that critical to keep? "Sure, pokemon center it is."

 

She took the star-shaped Max Revive, kneeled down, pried open Emil's jaws and shoved the item down his throat.

 

"One honest question first, since we agreed to it," she spoke up while getting up, citing the agreement, "Do you know anything about this?" Sine gestured vaguely to Emil, then to herself and Chompers. "There's a lot we don't know, but I do know that I wasn't born like this."

Edited by TehUltimateMage

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Chompers started to walk towards the two trainers, much to the dismay of Feathers before he paused. “What's a stomach ache?” he asked. He then listened as Jeff told him to try it, making him glare at the man. “You wouldn't last two seconds,” Feathers said. “I can tell they'll have some powerful Pokémon.”

 

Chompers sighed as Sine and Leo talked, Sine shoving something down Emil's throat in the process. Well, it looks like their secret wasn't a secret at all anymore. He closed his eyes and glowed, going back to his human form. It was then he noticed Sine asking if they knew anything about this. Feathers took her usual spot on Chompers shoulder. He shifted his feet, rather uncomfortable with the whole situation.

 

“I wasn't born like this either,” he added. “Mind if i ask what an HM is.”

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"Not much, I'm afraid. It was only after seeing such a power is possible that I realized someone I was looking into might have had those same abilities," Leo answered. So they didn't know much about their own situation? That... certainly seemed in line with what he thought he knew. And that part about not being born with it... Also, if Charlie (Chompers?) didn't know what a HM was, the chance that he had been born a Pokémon...

 

The more he heard, the clearer he could see the whole picture.

 

"In any case, it might not be a good subject to discuss out in the open. Let's continue this talk in a private room," he suggested. "Oh, and don't worry too much about that Tauros - there haven't been wild Pokémon in this area recently, so my guess is it had a trainer. It will be able to find its way back if left alone."

 

 

Jeff clicked his tongue and followed when Leo started walking towards the Pokémon Center. Finally something in this conversation that he understood. "HMs are special moves that can be used outside of battle to cross terrains humans usually aren't able to. We mainly use Bibarel to cross water and Tropius to fly," he explained.

 

---

 

It didn't take long to get to Lifferoad's Pokémon Center. They were the only trainers inside - probably had something to do with how this town was basically a huge collection of farms, with nothing interesting to see unless you were a Mareep fan -, but Leo still insisted on borrowing one of the rooms on the back, of the kind that trainers used when they wanted to stay the night. Well, at least the lack of people meant the nurse had no problem with that, so the group could make their way inside unobstructed after getting their Pokémon healed.

 

Jeff claimed one of the beds, sitting down on the head so his back was against the wall. "Okay, we're down to your level now. Speak."

 

"We've been through this before. I'm not short, you - the three of you actually - are the tall ones," Leo complained, making a motion towards the three men in the room as he closed the door.

"Says the one who specialized in Flying-types because he couldn't reach the high shelves."

"Do I need to bring out your perfect loss record against the Fighting Gym Leader?"

"Okay listen here you walking shampoo commercial-"

"Not the time," Leo interrupted as he too sat down, with enough distance to react if Jeff attempted to kick him. The other man was glaring yet again, but he seemed to think starting the conversation was more important than picking a fight, so Leo allowed his attention to shift towards the three other trainers.

 

He had the time to organize his thoughts on the way here, so the redhead already knew how to start. "Alright. I think the first thing I should mention is the subject I was researching. Which is Fragment, and its defeat at the hands of the two trainers John and Addis. It happened here in Lamorak around 50 years ago." He crossed his legs and got comfortable, feeling this might take some time. "If you ask me to recall everything I know, it might take hours. And even then, there might be some details that I think of as insignificant, but that might actually be of relevance to you. So, I'd like to ask that you first share what you feel are the important points to know about your situation and what you know of Lamorak's past, so I better know the level of detail I'll need to get into."

 

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Tae addressed the referee after giving the trainers their prizes. "Ade! How long will it take to prepare the helicopter for a ride to Taismog, with about six passengers?"

 

The other thought about it, hands in their pockets as they followed the group towards the elevator. "Forty minutes for the check-up. Another forty for refueling and transport to and from the private hangar to this public area. And ten minutes for me to revise my will in case we crash and burn."

"...You're all never going to let me forget that, are you."

"As flight instructor, my job is to remind you of all the mistakes you ever made to make sure you don't repeat any."

"They're exaggerating, don't worry about that. We'll get you to Taismog in one piece," Tae reassured the group. "We'll be going to get things ready now, so come back to the roof in two hours for takeoff. Make sure you don't have anything that could get lost with strong winds. In the meantime... Ade, do you have some of the Gym's flyers?"

 

The referee wordlessly produced three of the mentioned objects, seemingly from somewhere inside their left sleeve.

 

"Perfect. You see, while the official challenges take place only on the roof, this whole building is technically still the Gym. So I made sure to customize it so the other floors were put to good use too. Feel free to visit any of the installations here," Tae explained, handing the three flyers to the humans. "Also, the closest Pokémon Center should be exiting to the right, and the Contest Hall is right in front. I think a competition is about to start; if there aren't a lot of participants, you can go and still make it back in time."

 

There was a 'ding' as the elevator stopped, doors opening on the first floor. "We'll be going off ahead then," Ade commented, stepping out. "We won't leave without you, but do try to be punctual."

Edited by Puredark006

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Sine waited for the bickering couple to stop, although her impatience was apparent from the expression on her face and the tension in her crossed arms.

 

"Oh, so that's what you meant when you asked about someone who lived here fifty years ago. Tell me, is there a mythology behind this region, or lore about this 'Fragment' you're researching? Or am I overthinking this? Fifty years isn't very long in the grand span of things, but strange things are constantly happening across all regions." There was something that drew her in and begged to know more about the origins of the place and the mystical. She took a seat on a neighbouring bed, also sensing that this might take a while. "I don't mind listening for hours, but I don't know about those other guys," Sine added with a shrug and a smirk.

 

Her curiosity finally overcame her caution, especially since there was nothing worth hiding anymore. "But I guess I should make this a fair exchange of information, even though we did win the battle." She put a hand to the bridge of her nose, forgot about the tall men in the room, and began explaining.

 

"Whoever did this to us has some beef with Team Helix, because our situation seems to be tied to their research, whatever that is. My memories start from less than a week ago as if everything was reset. The condition to 'win the game'," she emphasized the words with air quotes, "according to the arbiter, is to remember who I am and what I asked for; why I made the choice that led to this. So far, for me, all I've pieced together is a connection to Johto and a huge amount of knowledge on the topic of legendary and mythical pokemon, though everyone's situation is a little different."

 

Sine left out the 'destroying the research' part in case Leonard had a stake in it, but she believed all the other bases were covered.

 

"There's probably other shifters out there, somewhere, with the same goal. I don't know if there'll be only one winner to this game, or what this will entail, or if or why this has anything to do with John, Addis, or Fragment."

 

 

A pause. "What do you know about John, Addis, or Fragment?"

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Vaila blinked at the woman who approached them out of the blue. She had to say, this was the first time something like this had happened to her. "I apologize, but Leslar and I are field workers. We don't know much about the specifics of the important projects."

 

"You're a fan!?" Leslar exclaimed in what was nearly a squeak. Lopunny actually took a few steps back in a very obvious 'I do not know him' gesture. "You just missed one of the big shots, but, if you have anything you want to know, we here will be more than glad to answer!" he said with what he believed to be a cool smirk, as he pointed at his chest. Vaila could practically see the sparkles around him.

 

Oh well, as long as he was happy (and out of trouble).

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