The Arcane Realm: Land of Freedom and Magicks

Wielder of Toxic Smoke
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Zorchic- Buizel was losing health fast and every bit lost meant a bit more gained for the Frillish. He had to get out of its hold. You shout out to the struggling Pokemon, instructing him to inflate his air sac. He does so to little avail, the Frillish isn't letting go! You then encourage him to break loose with another Quick Attack. Buizel spins his tail, propelling himself out of the water but failing to shake the Frillish loose. He crashes onto the deck of the ship, struggling for energy at this point. Sensing their isn't much strength left in the Buizel, Frillish releases its grip, allowing Buizel to catch his breath. Turning away from its opponent, the Frillish glares at you. You sense a rage in the opposing Water type, did this have something to do with the approaching full moon? The Frillish then catches you by surprise, firing off a Confuse Ray! The attack doesn't target Buizel though, instead you find yourself caught by the dazzling ray of light. Your eyesight spins like you're trapped in a washing machine, unable to see straight, you loose balance and begin to move around erratically.

Seeing the Frillish target you gives Buizel a boost, how dare it attack his trainer! He launches himself at the Frillish once more, slamming an Ice Punch into the back of its head. The ice from Buizel's fist spread across the Frillish's body, momentarily freezing it. This was the chance you'd been waiting for, throw that Pokeball! That was a task easier said than done right now, you were confused, how were you going to hit your target?!



~~~~~~~~~~

Starly sits perched on a nearby tree, watching the young boy that you'd sent him to watch. He seems to be training with his Pokemon, nothing too sketchy yet. Suddenly an Electroweb comes flying out of nowhere, Starly attempts evasive action but is caught in the web. "Well look at what we have here. You're an odd looking one, where did you come from?"
To Jake's disappointment, Buizel's little inflation didn't do much, that Frillish was strong! Frillish continued to Absorb Buizel's health, only stopping when Buizel used Quick Attack to get on the ship. But Jake had little time to react when the Frillish fired a Confuse Ray right at him! The trainer fell backward, holding his head with one hand.
"Well," Jake said dizzily, "at least we know what moves this Frillish has."
"Buizel!" Buizel cried in anger. He rushed toward the attacker with a powerful Ice Punch, freezing the blue Water Pokémon temporarily. The Sea Weasel Pokémon quickly motioned toward Jake, Catch that Frillish now!

Jake grimaced. That Confuse Ray...now he couldn't see straight! But luckily, he had been training for this. The thing was, what kind of Pokémon dared to attack a trainer? That was unethical, he thought! Whatever. Jake shook his head rapidly, momentarily shaking off the confusion, and reached inside his pocket for an empty Pokéball...

He figured that the Frillish might be able to help him understand the legend behind the full moon, though by the way it had treated Buizel, there was no way it would stay in his team--just long enough for Jake to understand why it was acting this way. Jake stood up unsteadily.

"Come on, Frillish," Jake pleaded. "We need your help. Comply with me and I'll send you back to where you came from. Truce?"

He didn't wait for a response, instead throwing the catching device. "Go, Pokéball!"

Ouch! Jake leaned against the ship's side, as another "twitch" from the confusion happened.


(OOC: Using Pokéball #1 out of 4.)

~~~~~~~~~~

Starly chirped in alarm as an Electroweb came at him from nowhere. The Starling Pokémon twisted around, trying to free himself, but to no avail. Then, he noticed the boy looking suspiciously at him. The bird Pokémon knew that he looked different from other Starly, thanks to his different blue-colored feathers. Quickly, Starly Growled at the mysterious trainer, hoping to keep him away. The Normal- and Flying-type had a plan.
Alright, I'll pretend to be a wild Pokémon that just happens to be differently colored. Maybe that will lower the boy's suspicion. Good thing Jake seems to be able to read auras...he'll know what I'm trying to do, that is, if he comes to help soon.
 
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Name a more manly professor. I'll wait.
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Missingno. Master - After deciding that the right cave was a clear trap, and the left a fair-ish gamble, you proceed down the left one. Its a slightly tight squeeze, with black, slimy walls, moss clumps everywhere, and small insectoid Pokemon crawling on the walls. As you keep going through, the light coming from the end of the cave grows brighter, and brighter, and brighter, until, Boom! The light disappears. Then, the moss on the cave walls suddenly begin to glow in a beautiful show of bioluminescence.
They grow bright blues, deep purple, and slightly ominous greens. You proceed down the cave, led by the glowing moss, then you stop. You hear a loud shrill scream, then a roar, and then lastly a crashing sound. Then, the bioluminescent moss stops glowing, then torches at the end of the cave light up.
As you proceed to the end of the cave, you reach a large clearing. A rocky pedestal sits in the middle. As you walk up to it, you see a small, shiny, rhombus-shaped stone. It was teal, and a carving of a dragon wing was inside of it.
Stones begin to glitter around you, all of them similar in shape to the one on the pedestal. Reds, blues, yellows, and greens shine everywhere, and all seem fresh for the picking.
As you look at the stones, you hear loud thudding on the ground. The ground is shaking and trembling, pebbles jumping, and then the glittering stones dim, before blacking out entirely.
Out of nowhere, three Pokemon appear, running in from a cave adjacent to the pedestal. One is a Kommo-o, another a Druddigon, and the last a Salamence. They seem very angry, and are ready to attack. The Salamence seems to be the leader, standing ahead of the other two. Kommo-o's left hand is super-charged with electricity, Salamence's mouth is emitting smoke, and Druddigon's head takes on a metallic sheen.

Kommo-o, Salamence, and Druddigon want to battle!
784_Sprite.gifSalamence_XY.gifDruddigon_XY.gif
What do you do?
 
Poison-type Trainer
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Missingno. Master - After deciding that the right cave was a clear trap, and the left a fair-ish gamble, you proceed down the left one. Its a slightly tight squeeze, with black, slimy walls, moss clumps everywhere, and small insectoid Pokemon crawling on the walls. As you keep going through, the light coming from the end of the cave grows brighter, and brighter, and brighter, until, Boom! The light disappears. Then, the moss on the cave walls suddenly begin to glow in a beautiful show of bioluminescence.
They grow bright blues, deep purple, and slightly ominous greens. You proceed down the cave, led by the glowing moss, then you stop. You hear a loud shrill scream, then a roar, and then lastly a crashing sound. Then, the bioluminescent moss stops glowing, then torches at the end of the cave light up.
As you proceed to the end of the cave, you reach a large clearing. A rocky pedestal sits in the middle. As you walk up to it, you see a small, shiny, rhombus-shaped stone. It was teal, and a carving of a dragon wing was inside of it.
Stones begin to glitter around you, all of them similar in shape to the one on the pedestal. Reds, blues, yellows, and greens shine everywhere, and all seem fresh for the picking.
As you look at the stones, you hear loud thudding on the ground. The ground is shaking and trembling, pebbles jumping, and then the glittering stones dim, before blacking out entirely.
Out of nowhere, three Pokemon appear, running in from a cave adjacent to the pedestal. One is a Kommo-o, another a Druddigon, and the last a Salamence. They seem very angry, and are ready to attack. The Salamence seems to be the leader, standing ahead of the other two. Kommo-o's left hand is super-charged with electricity, Salamence's mouth is emitting smoke, and Druddigon's head takes on a metallic sheen.

Kommo-o, Salamence, and Druddigon want to battle!
View attachment 130007View attachment 130009View attachment 130008
What do you do?
The left path led to the source of the roaring. The right path, an obvious trap. Neither one seemed like a particularly good option, but if Keith was to get anywhere in this place, he had to go with the lesser of two evils, and a tough battle was always a chance he was good with taking. It wasn't the roomiest of paths, but Keith wasn't too bothered by this. The slimy walls didn't bother him much- we're talking about a man who regularly hugs his Muk and Garbodor here. Keith pressed onward, doing his best to ignore Meowth's nervous chuckling. The light at the end of the tunnel got brighter... and brighter... until...!

...it... went... out?

But then! Keith's eyes lit up as the walls did the same- the moss on the walls glowed in a seriously cool selection of colors. "Whoa..." he and Meowth breathed simultaneously.

"Lediiiii..." Stewie added, likewise awestruck by this.

Before long, however, the moss stopped glowing, and torches in the walls lit up seemingly of their own volition. And that's when Keith saw it- a clearing, and a rocky pedestal in the center. And on that rocky pedestal was a most unmistakable shape.

"Is dat a Z-Crystal?" Meowth whispered.

"I think it is!" Keith murmured. "And look!" he added- for indeed, the one Keith supposed had to be a Dragonium Z was not alone. There were numerous stones glittering all around, all of them in most distinctive shapes. "Z-Crystals? All of these?

At that moment, however, the ground had started shaking. Slightly at first, but with progressively increasing intensity, as though something... as though something was coming.

"...dat can't be good," whimpered Meowth.

Indeed, a trio of large, angry dragons came barreling in. One of them, their evident leader, was a Salamence, a species Keith knew of pretty well. Another one was a Druddigon- Keith knew that species arguably even better, as he owned one himself. The third looked vaguely familiar- Keith had never seen this type of Pokémon before, but felt as though he may have seen a pre-evolution? He whipped out his Pokédex, intent on getting an answer and getting it fast.

"Kommo-o, the Scaly Pokémon. A Dragon and Fighting-type, and the evolved form of Hakamo-o," droned the device. "Kommo-o threatens enemies by jingling the scales on its tail, battling only those who stand strong in response. Armor was made from its scales in the distant past."

"Ahh, so that's what it evolves into," Keith remarked, putting away his Pokédex. "A trio of Dragon-types, huh? We can handle these!" he grinned. "Meowth, I choose-"

"Pass," Meowth interrupted flatly.

"Oh, fine then," Keith said, rolling his eyes. "Stewie, what say you?"

"Led ledi! Ledian!" Stewie responded confidently, turning to face the Salamence.

"Nice," Keith grinned. "But you're gonna need some backup, no doubt- WAH!" For at that moment, the Fast Ball on Keith's belt burst open, the modified Wht Apricorn unleashing its electric rodent occupant out into the open. "Anion!?" Keith exclaimed as his Minun materialized. "You up for this?"

Anion gave a confident smirk. "Mai mai, mai mai!" she declared, looking up fearlessly at the Kommo-o.

Keith chuckled. "Hard to argue with spirit like that," he shrugged. "And as for the Druddigon," he added, plucking the Poison Ball off his belt and enlarging it. "Aster, let's go!" he declared, throwing the sphere forward. And in a flash of light, accompanied by a sparkly swirl of sapphire stars, a Shiny Toxapex materialized, looking shy as ever, but as it occurred to her that she was in a battle, Aster started to look more determined. "Ready to go?" Keith called.

"Tox! Toxapex!" nodded Aster.

"Then here we go!" Keith declared. "Stewie, use Light Screen, then hit that Salamence with your Ice Punch! Anion, meet Kommo-o's attack head-on with Nuzzle, then follow up with Acrobatics! Aster, use Baneful Bunker to stop Druddigon's attack and follow up with Venoshock! He grinned, knowing all three of his Pokémon would see their Abilities come into play here- Stewie's Ice Punch was gonna be delivered with a forceful Iron Fist; Anion's Volt Absorb would make Kommo-o's Thunder Punch completely useless; and once Baneful Bunker ensured Druddigon's own Iron Head got it poisoned, Aster's attacks would be delivered in a particularly Merciless fashion.
 
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Zorchic- While you didn't think Frillish would be a fit on your team, you did believe it would be useful for working out this Full Moon nonsense. With that in mind, you attempt to bargain with the Frillish. While to you the words come out clearly, it is a different story for Frillish and Buizel. To them your words come out incomprehensible, the confusion messing with your mind and tongue. Both look at you quizzically, unsure what exactly you were trying to get across. You hurl the Pokeball without hesitation, your aim is......... appalling.

The ball hits the deck, bouncing upwards into the air. The boat's sail billows, reaching out to push the Pokeball away. With the ball soaring out towards the water, the likelihood of you catching the Frillish seems slim. That's until Buizel leaps off the boat, intercepting the Pokeball he swats it with his tail, sending it spinning back towards the boat. Frillish had dropped its guard as soon as it saw your shocking aim, it had no idea the ball was coming back towards it. The Water type is struck on the side with the ball, which snaps open and draws it within. The Pokeball drops onto the deck, shaking back and forth. A resounding click signals a successful capture, how'd you manage that?! Still struggling with the confusion, you manage to scramble along the deck to collect the ball before it can roll off. Buizel leaps out of the water to land next to you, the sea weasel then gives you a squirt with Water Gun, which helps to clear the confusion.

"Oi kid, we need to head in, can I drop you somewhere before I head back in to port", the captain of the vessel calls out to you, it seems its time to head in.

Congratulations! You've caught a lvl 10 Male Frillish with the EM Confuse Ray. It has the ability Water Absorb!


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

Starly lets out a growl as a man comes into view, this one larger than the boy he was watching. He looks remarkably similar though, like a taller, buffer version of the boy he'd been sent to watch. A Heliolisk drapes itself across the man's shoulder, grinning as it looked down on its catch. Holding the Electroweb with a gloved hand, the man grabs a vine and slides down to the ground, catching the attention of the boy. "Hey Chace I caught you something", the man holds up the Electroweb, with Startly still struggling inside. "Odd colour for a Starly but it seems to have a fair bit of fight in it, why not try and catch it?"

The boy grins, "thanks bro, I might just catch that Starly!" A Nuzleaf steps up alongside the boy, wiping sweat from its brow, exhausted from training. Chace pulls out a Pokeball and toss it towards Starly. The ball strikes the little bird, but fails to opening, instead it bounces straight back at the boy. He catches it and notices the button is flashing wildly. "Seems like it belongs to someone, I guess we should just hang onto it until someone shows up to claim it?"
 
Name a more manly professor. I'll wait.
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Missingno. Master - Stewie quickly set up a Light Screen, then flew at Salamence, frost collecting on its fist. Salamence braced for the attack, then released a mix of both Flamethrower and a Dragon Pulse on the incoming Ledian, the energy forming a dragon shape, and the fire cloaking it, making the attack be much more powerful, and completely neutralizing Stewie's Ice Punch attack, and blasting him backwards, slamming into the cave wall behind. Salamence then stood in place, performing a Dragon Dance, which powered up its strength and speed.

Both you and Anion were very sure that her Volt Absorb ability would neutralize Kommo-o's attack, but you would soon be very disappointed. As Anion and Kommo-o's fist collided, Anion was about to absorb the electricity, only to be stopped by an energy surge coming from Druddigon's left fist, which deactivated her Ability! Druddigon had broken the mold. Kommo-o then struck Anion with his fist, before spinning quickly and smacking Anion with a Dragon Tail. The attack had the ability to send Pokemon into their Pokeballs, which was exactly what happened to Anion. Dissipating into red energy, she quickly retreated into the same Fast Ball clipped to your belt. Kommo-o stumbled slightly, due to the paralysis caused by the Nuzzle attack.

Druddigon, similar to its leader, blasted a Flamethrower from its mouth at Aster, disabling its Baneful Bunker, then it went in for an Iron Head, taking the Venoshock head on, while doing damage.

These Pokemon were absurdly complex for wild ones, perhaps they weren't at all?
 
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Missingno. Master - Stewie quickly set up a Light Screen, then flew at Salamence, frost collecting on its fist. Salamence braced for the attack, then released a mix of both Flamethrower and a Dragon Pulse on the incoming Ledian, the energy forming a dragon shape, and the fire cloaking it, making the attack be much more powerful, and completely neutralizing Stewie's Ice Punch attack, and blasting him backwards, slamming into the cave wall behind. Salamence then stood in place, performing a Dragon Dance, which powered up its strength and speed.

Both you and Anion were very sure that her Volt Absorb ability would neutralize Kommo-o's attack, but you would soon be very disappointed. As Anion and Kommo-o's fist collided, Anion was about to absorb the electricity, only to be stopped by an energy surge coming from Druddigon's left fist, which deactivated her Ability! Druddigon had broken the mold. Kommo-o then struck Anion with his fist, before spinning quickly and smacking Anion with a Dragon Tail. The attack had the ability to send Pokemon into their Pokeballs, which was exactly what happened to Anion. Dissipating into red energy, she quickly retreated into the same Fast Ball clipped to your belt. Kommo-o stumbled slightly, due to the paralysis caused by the Nuzzle attack.

Druddigon, similar to its leader, blasted a Flamethrower from its mouth at Aster, disabling its Baneful Bunker, then it went in for an Iron Head, taking the Venoshock head on, while doing damage.

These Pokemon were absurdly complex for wild ones, perhaps they weren't at all?
The battle began, and very quickly did not go at all as Keith was expecting. Salamence let loose an impressive combination of Dragon Pulse and Flamethrower, cancelling out Stewie's Ice Punch completely, before going into a Dragon Dance. But it was Anion's predicament that threw Keith for a loop as the Thunder Punch landed! "WHAT?!" Keith exclaimed. "But how- she has Volt Absorb!"

"Look at da Druddigon!" Meowth exclaimed, pointing a paw at the pure Dragon-type. "I tink it's got Mold Breaka!"

"But that should only affect whatever it's attacking!" Keith spluttered. "Wha- Mold Breaker doesn't work like that!"

"Evidently it does," Meowth shrugged.

"Gah..." Keith groaned. At that moment, Kommo-o landed a Dragon Tail, sending Anion hurtling right back into her Fast Ball. At the same time, Druddigon burned through the Baneful Bunker with Flamethrower before actually landing the Iron Head- Venoshock didn't do nearly as much as it ought to have done since Druddigon didn't get poisoned.

"Dese are some tough opponents," Meowth remarked.

"You don't say," Keith grunted. Then, however, his face lit up with a grin. "...you don't say!" he repeated, sounding highly interested. "Tough Pokémon, abnormally so- exactly the sort of Pokémon you'd find hanging around where a Missingno. would call home! Oh, I can't give up now!" He reached for the balls on his belt and plucked off the Fast Ball. "Anion! One more time!" he exclaimed, sending his Minun right back out.

"Mai maaiiii!" Anion exclaimed. She glared at the Kommo-o, decidedly not amused with its use of Dragon Tail earlier.

"Let's play it smart this time!" Keith declared. "Aster, go for Wide Guard! Anion, use Helping Hand! Stewie, use Shadow Rave!"
 
Wielder of Toxic Smoke
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Zorchic- While you didn't think Frillish would be a fit on your team, you did believe it would be useful for working out this Full Moon nonsense. With that in mind, you attempt to bargain with the Frillish. While to you the words come out clearly, it is a different story for Frillish and Buizel. To them your words come out incomprehensible, the confusion messing with your mind and tongue. Both look at you quizzically, unsure what exactly you were trying to get across. You hurl the Pokeball without hesitation, your aim is......... appalling.

The ball hits the deck, bouncing upwards into the air. The boat's sail billows, reaching out to push the Pokeball away. With the ball soaring out towards the water, the likelihood of you catching the Frillish seems slim. That's until Buizel leaps off the boat, intercepting the Pokeball he swats it with his tail, sending it spinning back towards the boat. Frillish had dropped its guard as soon as it saw your shocking aim, it had no idea the ball was coming back towards it. The Water type is struck on the side with the ball, which snaps open and draws it within. The Pokeball drops onto the deck, shaking back and forth. A resounding click signals a successful capture, how'd you manage that?! Still struggling with the confusion, you manage to scramble along the deck to collect the ball before it can roll off. Buizel leaps out of the water to land next to you, the sea weasel then gives you a squirt with Water Gun, which helps to clear the confusion.

"Oi kid, we need to head in, can I drop you somewhere before I head back in to port", the captain of the vessel calls out to you, it seems its time to head in.

Congratulations! You've caught a lvl 10 Male Frillish with the EM Confuse Ray. It has the ability Water Absorb!


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

Starly lets out a growl as a man comes into view, this one larger than the boy he was watching. He looks remarkably similar though, like a taller, buffer version of the boy he'd been sent to watch. A Heliolisk drapes itself across the man's shoulder, grinning as it looked down on its catch. Holding the Electroweb with a gloved hand, the man grabs a vine and slides down to the ground, catching the attention of the boy. "Hey Chace I caught you something", the man holds up the Electroweb, with Startly still struggling inside. "Odd colour for a Starly but it seems to have a fair bit of fight in it, why not try and catch it?"

The boy grins, "thanks bro, I might just catch that Starly!" A Nuzleaf steps up alongside the boy, wiping sweat from its brow, exhausted from training. Chace pulls out a Pokeball and toss it towards Starly. The ball strikes the little bird, but fails to opening, instead it bounces straight back at the boy. He catches it and notices the button is flashing wildly. "Seems like it belongs to someone, I guess we should just hang onto it until someone shows up to claim it?"

Unfortunately for Jake, that confusion was definitely messing with him. His words came out tongue-tied, sounding like what a Komala would say in its sleep. The Pokéball he threw went wayward, but thanks to Buizel's quick acting, it bounded back towards Frillish and bopped the surprised Pokémon on the head. The Pokéball shook once, then twice, before stopping and shooting small stars into the air. Frillish was caught!

As quickly as he could with his head still spinning, Jake slapped his hand on the deck before locating and grabbing the Pokéball, with the newly caught Frillish inside. He didn't bother with a victory pose this time. "Buizel, gimme a Water Gun," he said, hoping that a fresh blast of water would clear the confusion. Buizel gladly agreed, dousing his trainer with the move. Oh, that felt nice! Jake's vision was no longer double and his mind felt a whole lot clearer; he was glad for that.

The trainer held the Pokéball in his hand, before getting an idea. Frillish would have to wait.

But before he could execute it, the captain called that they would be heading back to land soon. The captain asked where Jake wanted to be dropped off.

"Um, that dock over there, please!" Jake answered, pointing. He really hoped that his words would come out right. The dock, a little wood one that was near the place where Jake had sent Starly, led to a path next to the small grove of trees that the Mantine-riding boy was training in.
(OOC: If my description of a dock or the trees is incorrect, please correct it in the updator post.)

Now, back to his little idea. Once he and his Pokémon were back on land, Jake would run into the place that he had sent Starly, pretending to be exhausted, and say, "Hey! *pant* Has anyone seen my Starly? *pant* It's a unique blue color." Once he got Starly, he would "scold" the bird for flying off (and do it in front of whoever was there), but let Starly know via aura that it was just a disguise. Jake didn't want the boy to think that he had tried to spy on him. Besides, the kid didn't know yet that Starly was Jake's.

With the plan in mind, Jake told Buizel about it. Buizel agreed to keep up the "exhausted" act, too. The two watched the boat come closer and closer to the shore. Soon, Jake would get Starly back, and when they were out of earshot of the boy who'd disrupted Jake's fishing trip, Starly would tell Jake what he'd seen. Maybe Jake could be a bit friendlier toward the boy, if what that guy did made sense.

Once Jake ensured that all his loose belongings were safely inside his bag, he pressed a button on its side. Instantly, the big, bulky duffel bag became compacted into a comfortable adventurer's backpack. Jake picked the pack up and slipped it over his back. Now, he and Buizel were ready to step onto land. They only had to wait for the ship to get there.
 
Fizzytopian Idol
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Meetan- You knew it was a big ask, but you hoped that offering to help out with Pokemon would make you useful enough to bring along. The moustached man greets you with a smile and flourish of hand. "Greetings good lass, yes you hear correctly, we depart for the City of Pentacles at day break. Talented with Pokemon? We have a few Pokemon performers in need of a skilled hand, perhaps you could be of assistance? Yes, yes that would work well, consider yourself transported! Oh I do believe I forgot to introduce myself, I madam am the Great Jean-Pierre, Ringmaster of the troupe de spectacle, the greatest performers in all Fizzytopia! Meet the current members of my troupe, the stunning Seraphina, the hulking Herakles and the fantastic fools, Eeny, Meeny, Miny and Mo!" The other members of the troupe welcome you, smiles spreading across their faces despite their obvious fatigue." Meet us back here in the morning and we shall begin our journey, but for now we must sleep." Jean-Pierre claps his hands, ushering the troupe off to their rooms.

A nurse soon approaches you, presenting you with your Pokeballs and a key to a spare room for you to stay in. It would be best to get some sleep and perhaps set an alarm. If you over slept you'd miss your ride and be left right back where you started. Hopefully travelling with the troupe would be a safe option, they seemed to be on the level, but you had no way of being sure at this point.
Alice was relieved at how smoothly that arrangement had gone. Of course, while she could train her own Pokemon well enough - mostly, anyway - helping performers out with their own issues in an unfamiliar field might be easier said than done. She smiled and waved energetically to the others who greeted her before they left, wondering how many of those names were authentic and how many stuck to their stage names more times than not. "Yeah, no worries. I understand, thank you." She replied with a nod, watching the lot of them take their leave. She thanked Nurse Joy for her Pokemon and the key once they were returned, deciding to make her way to one of the nearby computer terminals to sort things out. Keeping Fiona with her was necessary at this point, given that this pursuit was for her as much as anything else, but the line up of her team was going to be important here. She needed to make sure that her company was balanced, skilled and ready for anything. Of course, this would all be pointless if they all left without her, so not long after Alice retired to her room to rest.

And man, that absurdly early alarm hurt. Still, Alice got up, groaning and grimacing as she went about showering the summer sweat away and getting into her light outfit for the road ahead. It was still practical, but her shoes were sturdy enough for any terrain and breathable, and her bright shorts were on the longer side. She brought a thin layer to go over her pink and rainbow tank top, just to keep the burn of the sun off her arms and shoulders, and once she was ready Alice went downstairs to meet the troupe. The whole thing was a rush, not even bothering to properly apply make up or anything like that. They had a long way to go, if she felt insecure she could do it later. Besides, Alice was more concerned with this just working out. They seemed like a friendly bunch, but people always did until the crazy came out (... she'd know...).

Hopefully they were still there, and sane, and they'd get their victory in the end. What a palava.
 
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Zorchic- Having finally come to your senses, you decide it is probably best to make your way towards the meeting place. Starly hadn't returned, that could either mean that he was successful in his spying mission and was still busy collecting information or it meant something had gone horribly, horribly wrong. Surely it was the first thing, right? Regardless, you direct the captain's attention to a small wooden dock and the boat quickly swings towards that direction. The journey to the dock is swift and the captain quickly ushers you off his vessel, he needs to get back to the main port before the sun sets. Buizel looks towards you, aware of the plan you've concocted. If this was going to work, you'd have to be super convincing.....

~~~~~~~~~~~~
"So when is everyone else meant to get here Heath? I had a bit of a run in with this punk tourist earlier, the dumb arse was fishing, he was lucky I disrupted him before something nasty took his lure. I may have told him he could come and watch us take on the King of the Lake, that's okay isn't it?" Chace looks around, expecting you to turn up shortly.

"You did what?!" Heath snaps, "why would you invite someone to come watch us? And by us, I mean you and me because the others have pulled out." Starly watches the pair carefully, he may have been captured but he was still getting some good information.

"What?!" Chace shouts, "there is no way we can do it by ourselves, last time we tried that we couldn't even get close to the King." Chace is enraged, it seems facing the King of the Lake means a lot to him.


Meetan- You rise early, despite every inch of your body urging you to stay in bed. Why go out into the cold with a bunch of crazy carnival creeps when you could stay in a nice warm bed? Because you have to get to the Desert of Stars! Rushing out of the Pokemon Centre you are relieved to see the troupe still preparing for departure. Their caravan consists of four separate carts, each pulled by a different Pokemon. A pair of Rapidash pull the first cart, this one is the most ornate and seems to belong to Jean-Pierre. A grizzly looking Camerupt is strapped up to Herakles cart, while a Bouffalant pulls the cart belonging to the harlequins, its afro dyed in an array of fantastic colours. Suddenly someone grabs your hand, pulling you forwards.

"I'm glad you woke up in time", Seraphina greets you with a beaming smile, she seems well rested. "You can ride along with me, it's not very often I get the company of another woman, this troupe is a bit of a boys club." She leads you towards her wagon, which happens to be painted bright pink! A Sawsbuck waits nearby, it was likely used to pull Seraphina's cart. Pink blossoms adorn its antlers, a stunning spring time bloom. "I'll just get Bambi here strapped up and we'll be ready to go, also feel free to just call me Sera."

It seems the troupe is nearly ready to head off. Were you prepared for the journey? Sera seemed more than happy for you to travel with her, but perhaps you wished to travel with one of the others?
 
Fizzytopian Idol
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Meetan- You rise early, despite every inch of your body urging you to stay in bed. Why go out into the cold with a bunch of crazy carnival creeps when you could stay in a nice warm bed? Because you have to get to the Desert of Stars! Rushing out of the Pokemon Centre you are relieved to see the troupe still preparing for departure. Their caravan consists of four separate carts, each pulled by a different Pokemon. A pair of Rapidash pull the first cart, this one is the most ornate and seems to belong to Jean-Pierre. A grizzly looking Camerupt is strapped up to Herakles cart, while a Bouffalant pulls the cart belonging to the harlequins, its afro dyed in an array of fantastic colours. Suddenly someone grabs your hand, pulling you forwards.

"I'm glad you woke up in time", Seraphina greets you with a beaming smile, she seems well rested. "You can ride along with me, it's not very often I get the company of another woman, this troupe is a bit of a boys club." She leads you towards her wagon, which happens to be painted bright pink! A Sawsbuck waits nearby, it was likely used to pull Seraphina's cart. Pink blossoms adorn its antlers, a stunning spring time bloom. "I'll just get Bambi here strapped up and we'll be ready to go, also feel free to just call me Sera."

It seems the troupe is nearly ready to head off. Were you prepared for the journey? Sera seemed more than happy for you to travel with her, but perhaps you wished to travel with one of the others?
Alice was relieved to find that the Troupe was still sorting themselves out, giving her time to tuck into a quick breakfast if she so desired. Before she got the chance, though, someone took her hand and made the tired trainer jump. When she returned to the waking world proper, her blue eyes fell upon Seraphina, who was more energetic at this hour than she could ever hope to be. "Yeah, me too. And yeah, I can imagine." She replied, smiling in spite of her sleepiness, looking over at the 'Boys Club' of sorts. The carts varied in aesthetic as well as the Pokemon pulling them, and as was typical of the trainer, she was soon snapping a few pictures of each. "Sorry, I can't help it, this all looks awesome-- oh my gosh! It's all pink!"

Her voice rose in notes at the sight of Sera's carriage, followed up by a coo of joy and admiration. The Sawsbuck, too, was beautiful. It was absolutely gorgeous, even, especially with how its antlers were blooming. Of course, the blossoms were a surprise in themselves, and served as a reminder to her own brain... Was the season in this area different, or was she that grossly out of the loop? Given she couldn't even remember how she'd survived so many adventures - if she had... - maybe it wasn't that alarming. It was more... 'Well, I'm more screwed up than I thought' than anything else. Was it spring, really? Should she have gone for different, warmer clothes?

"Yeah, no problem. Gosh, they're beautiful. Is Bambi friendly, can I pet them?" Could she hug it? Maybe steal it away and get away with it? At least this had woken her up!
 
Fizzytopian Idol
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Raves: It was a testament to your natural bravery and balance that you could face such strong reminders of past traumas and remain level-headed. Most would be screaming, crying or locked into internal visions of horror at an occurrence like that, but not you. You and Nothung endure the faux-sandstorm and carry on undaunted, hacking up orders as if your life depended on it. Funny that. Nothung dives under the ground urgently, spraying another slurry of sand about the arena, but it thankfully doesn't reach your suffering lungs. If only Nuhuko could have more consideration.

The sun and moon clash violently, but it's the Lunatone that comes up the victor. Ramses is flung from the battle with the finalities of Shadow Ball and Signal Beam, which are terrifying and beautiful to witness, but the special moves' sound effects ring resoundingly through the scene before silencing everything with a hiss and a slam. The Solrock is idle, unmoving, and the bits that appear to be its eyes don't seem to be taking anything in. One down, and four levels gained for Nuhuko! You feel just the slightest hint of relief, but that's about it. You're paranoid that Ammie's coming for you personally, and you already know that Menefer would if he could. Glasspine's the only thing keeping him from doing so, taking advantage of their close quarters to claw the Honedge with ghostly force and keep him trapped in a sandy tomb reinforced by powerful steel. You can already hear Menefer trying to break out, however. There's only so much time it'll hold...

And that's when you feel it. Ammie's resurgence, manifesting behind you, only to strike before you could turn your head more than an inch. Your strained body barrels forward into the ground, and pain takes over, searing and deep, as if the puppet struck your soul. Nothung had no chance to sense Ammie's presence. Sure, the Inferno could feel tracks on the ground, but not the motion of a ghost through the air. He only reacts by powering back upwards when you're already on the ground, and just as Nothung starts using Hidden Power, Amie unleashes another astonishing, ear splitting shriek, enabling Ammie to get in another strike as the Pokemon recovers. They both connect – a shadowed claw and a nasty sucker punch. There's another explosion of dastardly power, and you drop your head to avoid getting more sand in your eyes and mouth than you already had, but when the view is clear, the Banette's lying on the ground, its possessed fabric dirty and torn. Nothung learned Counter, Submission, Quick Guard and Focus Punch... But he looks pretty worn out from this extreme lesson.

One left. Menefer finally rises from the tomb, forcing Glasspine back some distance as he peers down all of you with unyielding spite. This was the power of ghost Pokemon: driven by ambition, by unfinished business, by sadness and resentment and bitterness and all the negativity they could absorb from the world. The sight of Menefer's fallen servants only imbues him with more fury, more power, and you can feel it in your bones, in your spirit... Even in your false arm, as clear and unnerving as the prick from that bloody box.

“You think I'm so weak?! You think you can outdo me yet, after everything I've been through to get here?! After all of this time?!” Menefer demands of you. The Honedge had managed to sound mean but mortal up until now, but his voice is beginning to distort, mixed with the ring of clanging metal and something that might have climbed out of Hell. How nostalgic! So you do have things in common! “I won't be beaten here. I will have my Talas, have my throne, and you will have it with me! And if your Pokemon continue to defy me, we will have them hanging from the castle gates as a reminder to all who will defy us – including whatever remains of you! Now, beg! Beg me to let even a piece of you live, you defiant, unworthy, traitor!”

Traitor? Goodness, he's still taking your rejection personally, and that Metal Sound reminds you of Ammie's screeching. No wonder she seemed to get along with him so well. Better decide your next moves fast, or you're going to be sharing a vessel with the salt incarnate for all eternity. What do you do?
 
Wielder of Toxic Smoke
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Zorchic- Having finally come to your senses, you decide it is probably best to make your way towards the meeting place. Starly hadn't returned, that could either mean that he was successful in his spying mission and was still busy collecting information or it meant something had gone horribly, horribly wrong. Surely it was the first thing, right? Regardless, you direct the captain's attention to a small wooden dock and the boat quickly swings towards that direction. The journey to the dock is swift and the captain quickly ushers you off his vessel, he needs to get back to the main port before the sun sets. Buizel looks towards you, aware of the plan you've concocted. If this was going to work, you'd have to be super convincing.....

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

"So when is everyone else meant to get here Heath? I had a bit of a run in with this punk tourist earlier, the dumb arse was fishing, he was lucky I disrupted him before something nasty took his lure. I may have told him he could come and watch us take on the King of the Lake, that's okay isn't it?" Chace looks around, expecting you to turn up shortly.

"You did what?!" Heath snaps, "why would you invite someone to come watch us? And by us, I mean you and me because the others have pulled out." Starly watches the pair carefully, he may have been captured but he was still getting some good information.

"What?!" Chace shouts, "there is no way we can do it by ourselves, last time we tried that we couldn't even get close to the King." Chace is enraged, it seems facing the King of the Lake means a lot to him.
Now that Jake was on land, he and Buizel started their exhausted act and made a beeline for the meeting place where he had sent Starly. He and Buizel burst into the clearing.

"Has anyone seen a strangely-colored Starly—hey!" Breathing hard, Jake stared at his Starly, which was trapped in Electroweb netting held by a person whom Jake didn't know. The word Heath suddenly floated into his mind.


"You know I've been looking all over for you," Jake scolded his Starling Pokémon. "Don't fly off like that."
But his aura conveyed to Starly,
Relax. I'm not mad at you. Play along.

"So, Heath...?" Jake said to the Electroweb-holding man. (Buizel gave a little pant, which prompted Jake to do the same.) "Where did you find Starly?"

The trainer turned to the first boy...Chace, he somehow knew. (He had unknowingly read Starly's aura.)
Jake took a deep breath to make it seem like he was catching his breath, and gave a smug smile. "Well, well, well. I'm here, Chace. You warned me of the dangers of fishing on the full moon, correct? Well, I'm glad I didn't listen, 'cause look at this bad boy." He reached inside his pocket, got a Pokéball, and sent out his Frillish. "If I had listened, I wouldn't have caught this Frillish. Quite the tough one, if I must say so myself."
Just then, Starly gave a few quick angry chirps. Jake understood Starly saying, That kid Chace called you a punk tourist! A dumb arse!

Jake's expression turned into that of a father about to throw a fit. "Is this true, Chace?" Jake demanded. "That you called me a punk tourist? A dumb arse? I'm Jake, an Aura Guardian, you tryhard! Look people up before you call them names, for Arceus' sake!"
Jake glared at the kid. "If you want someone to stop doing a dangerous thing, next time ask nicely. I'll probably understand. But mocking my actions? No way. Who'd listen to someone like that?"

Jake turned to Heath. "Whatever. May I have my Starly now?" he said, annoyed. To prove that Starly was his, Jake held up Starly's Pokéball.
 
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Meetan- Delighted by both the pink cart and the adorable Sawsbuck, you happily agree to travel with Sera. "Oh he's friendly alright, give him some food and you'll have a friend for life!" Sera giggles as you approach the Sawsbuck. As the circus performer attaches the harness to the stag, you make your way around to greet the Unovan native. The stag stares at you with bright white eyes, you reach out to pat it on the head, only for it to tilt its head back and lick your hand. It seems the Sawsbuck is already quite fond of you! While you keep the Pokemon entertained, Sera finishes her preparations, its time to depart! You join Sera on the cart and the group slowly begins to move, following the lead of Jean-Pierre. Thankfully the streets are fairly clear at this time in the morning and it isn't long before you make your way out of the Hamlet and back onto the Fools Road.

"If all goes well we should make it to the Chariot Inn before Nightfall. We will likely stop around midday for a rest and some practice, but otherwise we'll have to keep moving." Sera provides an outline of the travel plans, before going of on a tangent and filling you in on her backstory. She joined the troupe in her early teens, after running away from an abusive home. The troupe leader at the time had taken her in without question and helped her become the performer that she is now. She'd travelled to many different regions and at times considered breaking off from the troupe to do her own thing. "What about you Alice? You seem like an interesting person, surely you've got an interesting tale?" The road was long, a good story would certainly help to pass the time!"


Zorchic- You burst into the clearing, putting on your planned act. Starly gives you the information he has gathered, giving you more to go off. You show off the Frillish you'd managed to snag, despite Chace warning you not to fish during the Full Moon. Starly promptly points out that Chace had insulted you, causing you to erupt. You question the local before announcing yourself as an Aura Guardian, which would surely knock some sense into the foolish teen!

"Bahahahaha", Chace erupts in laughter, even Heath snickers a bit. "What the fuck is an Aura Guardian? Was that meant to mean something? Also you expect me to be impressed by that Frillish? If you struggled against then you truly are a rookie." As Chace continues to laugh, you ask Heath to release your Starly.

"Eh sure, it's yours so who am I to keep it from you", Heath releases the net, allowing Starly to fly back over to you. "Hey kid, don't suppose you want to try and help us get to the King of the Lake? We were expecting some backup but its fallen through. Chace said you were interested in the King...."

"There is no way I'm fighting alongside him!" Chace erupts, quickly snapping out of his state of hysterics.

Chace had been nothing but rude and aggressive, however his brother Heath seemed like a reasonable person. Perhaps you could come to some sort of agreement? Buizel looks to you, uncertain about the whole situation. Chace had mocked the Aura Guardians, surely you wouldn't let him get away with that?
 
Fizzytopian Idol
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Meetan- Delighted by both the pink cart and the adorable Sawsbuck, you happily agree to travel with Sera. "Oh he's friendly alright, give him some food and you'll have a friend for life!" Sera giggles as you approach the Sawsbuck. As the circus performer attaches the harness to the stag, you make your way around to greet the Unovan native. The stag stares at you with bright white eyes, you reach out to pat it on the head, only for it to tilt its head back and lick your hand. It seems the Sawsbuck is already quite fond of you! While you keep the Pokemon entertained, Sera finishes her preparations, its time to depart! You join Sera on the cart and the group slowly begins to move, following the lead of Jean-Pierre. Thankfully the streets are fairly clear at this time in the morning and it isn't long before you make your way out of the Hamlet and back onto the Fools Road.

"If all goes well we should make it to the Chariot Inn before Nightfall. We will likely stop around midday for a rest and some practice, but otherwise we'll have to keep moving." Sera provides an outline of the travel plans, before going of on a tangent and filling you in on her backstory. She joined the troupe in her early teens, after running away from an abusive home. The troupe leader at the time had taken her in without question and helped her become the performer that she is now. She'd travelled to many different regions and at times considered breaking off from the troupe to do her own thing. "What about you Alice? You seem like an interesting person, surely you've got an interesting tale?" The road was long, a good story would certainly help to pass the time!"
Another predictable squee of joy from Alice as the Sawsbuck licked her hand, and another declaration of love for good measure. She was happy to hang out and just pet and scratch and generally admire the Pokemon until Sera needed her or announced that it was time to go. When the performer did so, Alice clambered clumsily up onto the cart next to her, taking in the sights of the Hamlet at daybreak as they left it behind for the endless road ahead. It was slightly cooler in the morning, but she knew it would soon warm up to typical summer temperature.

"Alright, that sounds cool." Alice said, happy to let Sera go on and explain herself. She was a naturally nosy person and loved a good ramble and gossip, so it was perfectly fine with her. Some of it was relateble, too. Her home on the 'other side' definitely had its issues, the abuse more on the mental and emotional part than anything physical, but she'd not had the spine to run away. This world had swallowed her up years ago now, however, and the other one was barely missed. Sure, some things were simpler there, but most of it was just a difficult and miserable existence. Here everything was higher stakes and dangerous because Alice had chosen to live it that way, but it was worth it, and largely she was happier.

"I do, but it's also kind of complicated." She had to be careful of what she said. Few people knew Alice's actual history and believed it, so she had to hold her tongue. "I have amnesia, pretty much. I remember some blots from my childhood when I met my first Pokemon, Masaru. He's a pink Piloswine." She explained, "Found him in my back garden. And then besides some schooling and stuff like that, most of it is a blank until I was nineteen and I woke up in a secret base with Maasa, and two other Pokemon, and I've been living my life from there. I mostly adventure around, but I always wanted to be an idol, and I've managed to make that work." The young woman carried on, taking out her Holo Caster to show Sera some saved photos she had, "So between being a paid diva my Pokemon and I go exploring and defend Fizzytopia, which is cool, like I helped out with the big Cloud Garden Snowdown and stuff. I've got a medical condition, too, so managing that when it was too cold to figure out my meds properly was real fun." She shrugged. She was happy to answer any questions or elaborate around things if Sera asked. For the most part, when it came to her own self, Alice was a sincere and open book. "My life goes between being absolutely bonkers and boring as hell, honestly. Same as everyone else's, I guess."
 
No need for the disco
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Raves: It was a testament to your natural bravery and balance that you could face such strong reminders of past traumas and remain level-headed. Most would be screaming, crying or locked into internal visions of horror at an occurrence like that, but not you. You and Nothung endure the faux-sandstorm and carry on undaunted, hacking up orders as if your life depended on it. Funny that. Nothung dives under the ground urgently, spraying another slurry of sand about the arena, but it thankfully doesn't reach your suffering lungs. If only Nuhuko could have more consideration.

The sun and moon clash violently, but it's the Lunatone that comes up the victor. Ramses is flung from the battle with the finalities of Shadow Ball and Signal Beam, which are terrifying and beautiful to witness, but the special moves' sound effects ring resoundingly through the scene before silencing everything with a hiss and a slam. The Solrock is idle, unmoving, and the bits that appear to be its eyes don't seem to be taking anything in. One down, and four levels gained for Nuhuko! You feel just the slightest hint of relief, but that's about it. You're paranoid that Ammie's coming for you personally, and you already know that Menefer would if he could. Glasspine's the only thing keeping him from doing so, taking advantage of their close quarters to claw the Honedge with ghostly force and keep him trapped in a sandy tomb reinforced by powerful steel. You can already hear Menefer trying to break out, however. There's only so much time it'll hold...

And that's when you feel it. Ammie's resurgence, manifesting behind you, only to strike before you could turn your head more than an inch. Your strained body barrels forward into the ground, and pain takes over, searing and deep, as if the puppet struck your soul. Nothung had no chance to sense Ammie's presence. Sure, the Inferno could feel tracks on the ground, but not the motion of a ghost through the air. He only reacts by powering back upwards when you're already on the ground, and just as Nothung starts using Hidden Power, Amie unleashes another astonishing, ear splitting shriek, enabling Ammie to get in another strike as the Pokemon recovers. They both connect – a shadowed claw and a nasty sucker punch. There's another explosion of dastardly power, and you drop your head to avoid getting more sand in your eyes and mouth than you already had, but when the view is clear, the Banette's lying on the ground, its possessed fabric dirty and torn. Nothung learned Counter, Submission, Quick Guard and Focus Punch... But he looks pretty worn out from this extreme lesson.

One left. Menefer finally rises from the tomb, forcing Glasspine back some distance as he peers down all of you with unyielding spite. This was the power of ghost Pokemon: driven by ambition, by unfinished business, by sadness and resentment and bitterness and all the negativity they could absorb from the world. The sight of Menefer's fallen servants only imbues him with more fury, more power, and you can feel it in your bones, in your spirit... Even in your false arm, as clear and unnerving as the prick from that bloody box.

“You think I'm so weak?! You think you can outdo me yet, after everything I've been through to get here?! After all of this time?!” Menefer demands of you. The Honedge had managed to sound mean but mortal up until now, but his voice is beginning to distort, mixed with the ring of clanging metal and something that might have climbed out of Hell. How nostalgic! So you do have things in common! “I won't be beaten here. I will have my Talas, have my throne, and you will have it with me! And if your Pokemon continue to defy me, we will have them hanging from the castle gates as a reminder to all who will defy us – including whatever remains of you! Now, beg! Beg me to let even a piece of you live, you defiant, unworthy, traitor!”

Traitor? Goodness, he's still taking your rejection personally, and that Metal Sound reminds you of Ammie's screeching. No wonder she seemed to get along with him so well. Better decide your next moves fast, or you're going to be sharing a vessel with the salt incarnate for all eternity. What do you do?
Nothung's swift burrowing managed to keep away from Alex as the Lunatone and Solrock assaulted each other, yet it was thankfully Nuhuko who came out on top, the meteorite pokemon's double offensive push being what he needed to knock the Solrock out once and for all. Alex was relieved a little, yet the fact that the Banette had vanished into thin air kept him on edge. He was confident still that the Infernape would handle her when she reappeared, so that left Menefer as the primary threat, one that was quickly put to the side as Glasspine gave a forceful claw to knock him back before trapping him in a reinforced spiral of sand infused with metallic energy. That oughta keep the madmon at bay for a moment while he got his breath back, and as he inhaled, Alex was fairly sure that things were looking up.

At least, until a chill on his back led him to confirm that yes, the little bitch had indeed pulled off a cardinal sin of pokemon battling. The puppet's callous strike launched Alex forward and into the sand, a wail of pain escaping his throat as the impact seemingly tore at his soul, and his body was wracked in sheer, unadulterated, piercing pain. Gods, that hurt! The force of him landing led to the Infernape surfacing having felt nothing due to the way the Phantom Force operated, and upon seeing his trainer floored and wincing and the ghost hovering over him, made him see red. Even moreso when his hidden power technique was somewhat neutralized by another screech from the banshee, yet as the chimp's paw hummed with phantasmic shimmers the two of them rushed each other. Yes, the Sucker Punch smarted, and the sudden blast of energy forced Alex's head down again, yet at the end of the day Nothung was at the apex of his strength and as he stood panting, Ammie was definitely out of the fight, unmoving torn body laying there. Heck, it seemed as if he had learned something from this fight.

Before he could give congratulations to the two pokemon, the Sandslash squeaked an alert as the Honedge broke free of its holdings, and the single eye glowered at the group with ineffable malice. The situation grew more dire even as Alex got to his knees, trembling still from the sudden attack on him, and yet the sword pokemon's rage...he could practically feel the hatred emanating from him, even in his prosthetic, and this was evident as Meneder began to address the group. His voice, however, had warped into something truly horrific, a nasty metallic sound ringing through his already aching ears. Alex stared back, listening in pain to every last word the wannabe pharaoh shrieked, and listened to the demands to beg for mercy, and the Honedge calling him a traitor of all things.

Alex squinted back, before coughing a little. "Blissey calling the Snorlax fat, much?" he spat, trying to climb to his feet. "You...you've some nerve to accuse me of treason, given that it was you who used me to try and get your own way. You're no more a traitor than I am, Menefer...but you want me to beg? Then I beg you, shut up and face the facts. You're outnumbered, outclassed and outmatched. Scream and cry all you want, you've lost. There's plenty of ways you could have had your little kingdom, but you went with the single slimiest method, and that I do not forgive. If you truly believe yourself the rightful heir to a fallen land, then pray tell: what will you do if somehow you pull off a miracle and get your silly little throne back? You'll be puppeting something that will barely function, ruling over an expanse of dry, lifeless sand, trying to rebuild something that was buried millenia ago! And quite frankly, you'd be a fitting king of fools, reigning over a barren wasteland until you piss off enough people and pokemon that something far bigger and badder comes along and destroys all you held dear, again. Gods, your sisters would be ashamed of you if they say you right now..."

That said, Alex waved a hand to his pokemon, the group understanding what needed to be done. Glasspine would put the Honedge to bed by smacking Menefer with thief, followed by another shadow claw to force him into that damn box, before caving it down on him with a careful earthquake. Nothung would stand by Alex to catch a breather, while Nuhuko, who still had a bit in the tank, would ensure that Menefer's plans would be forever scuppered by finding that orb he was after, and giving it a full force giga impact to shatter it. Alex stared down Menefer, waiting for the upset pokemon's response, while wondering how much of a nerve his counter tirade struck.
 
Overstressed Gay
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X. Fortune’s Woods - A place in the forest where the magical energy is at its most potent, forming a sort of myst that permeates the air. Everything from the trees to the wildlife here seem a bit out of this world, and it’s hard to predict what exactly will happen here. Some state that these woods even spin like a wheel, and depending on where the wheel is travelers will experience either good luck or bad luck. Whatever it is, this portion of the forest is filled with fun and whimsy.
Let's set the mood, shall we~?

An owl hoots in the woods, otherwise silent. The mist is barely visible under the pale glow of the moonlight, which would make it difficult to navigate. Surely no one would be out in the woods at this time of night? The bewitching hour, a time of curses and monsters. “Boreas, are you hungry my little boy? Hmm, I’m not entirely sure I packed enough food for this trip, but it wouldn’t be too hard to find some food in this forest if we needed to. Here, this should keep your occupied for a while.” A woman had stopped to pull out a candy from her purse and feed it to the hungry Snom on her shoulder. It was a chocolate covered in rock candy that looked like a blood red crystal, clearly meant to be sucked on for a while before getting to a warm and gooey chocolate center. Boreas happily began to suck on the candy, squeaking in delight. Two other Pokemon floated off behind the woman, an Inkay and a Phantump, both cautiously observing their surroundings. The Inkay seemed a little more interested in actually looking for stuff, occasionally shining her lights in a log or under a tree root, but the Phantump, seemed a bit more diligent. The woman hadn’t really asked either of them to do this, but they settled naturally into it. Maybe they were looking out for Boreas?

The woman took a deep breath of the forest air. It was cool, crisp, clean, and quite refreshing. But it also had an unmistakable feel of magic. Like a view of a foggy lake just as the sun rises up. This place would be perfect for a pleasant little nocturnal adventure. This place was called the Fortune’s Woods, and if anyone felt confident in her fortune, it was this woman. “Come now, let’s see what wonders and whimsy we can find here! At the precarious, spinning edge of madness!” The woman chuckled as she continued walking through the forest. This was definitely the right place for someone like her to adventure. Daphne, the Phantump, didn’t seem particularly pleased at her trainer’s flight of fancy, but Boreas and Scylla were on board. Who knows what food, or treasure, could be found in a place like this?
 
Fizzytopian Idol
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Raves: You'd had enough of this farce, tired of the spoiled Honedge's bitter attitude and dishonourable actions. It wasn't like he had room to talk, after all, given the methods Menefer had employed to try and achieve his ends. The ghost sneered at your tirade, although the only way you could tell was by the narrowing of his single eye and the audible sound he made. “Idiot man. You think I haven't considered such things after all this time? Only a fool would set out on a quest of this magnitude without keeping such things in mind! Not all of us are as short sighted as aimless wanderers like you! It's why you'd be better off giving your vessel to me – it's not as if you're destined to achieve anything in your short life!”

Glasspine makes to use Thief. It was an odd choice, besides its type effectiveness – there were arguably better strikes that could be used right now, when all were guaranteed to make their marks. You soon realise that he and Nuhuko must have been plotting together during your little speech, corralling the undead sword towards that infernal box. You open your mouth to speak as you watch the Lunatone gear up and charge at Menefer with Giga Impact. For one, it would simply phase through the Honedge, and it did, and two--

“No!” At first you thought that it was Glasspine using an attack, but then you realised that it was Menefer's livid roar that was making the ground shake. You almost lost your footing again given the weakness of your body, and Glasspine stumbled a bit, your group feeling his shock and fury deep in your souls. It made you feel sick, even, as if the horror striking through your opponent at the moment was embedding itself within you. Nuhuko had managed to smash the orb, shards of black and amythest glass scattering into the windswept sands. The energy inside of it seemed to be swirling everywhere, growing from a small sphere that had been contained and into a growing mass. Your jaw dropped, but before you could try to think of anything to do, it exploded. Menefer roared again, closest to the blast, and Glasspine used this as his opportunity to use Earthquake. It's not like things could get much worse, you thought, as you once again hit the ground. You've already died once, what's one more painful end?

When the latest wave of sand and grim energy faded, you'd find the quiet eerie and deafening. It seemed like while you and your Pokemon had taken some pain from the orb's kickback, Glasspine's move had succeeded: Menefer had not only been forced into the box, but said box had dropped quite a distance through the sand. It was unnerving that you didn't have full confirmation of his fall, of course, but you figure that if he had survived or was in any state to come after you, he'd still be throwing his tantrum. Right? Glasspine and Nuhuko had grown three levels each for their seeming success, and now that you have a moment, you can see the bounty of other items left in the sand: a Razor Claw, an Ice Stone, about $500 worth of coins and a a Shiny Stone. Not a bad haul, sure, but nowhere near enough to make up for what you just faced.

And certainly not enough to take your mind off the ill feeling that hangs in the air. It might be best to leave quickly, if you can, because something tells you that the Realm might not be done with you yet...


Emi: You've come to the Forest of Wands for an adventure, and one can see why. The foliage seems to stretch on forever, towering towards the sky and winding endless, carving out paths that twist and turn like the rumoured clockwork properties of Fortune's Woods. Perhaps that quality is just pretense, though, because it's easy to see how one could get lost or lose track of trouble here. The colours of the flowers, leaves and and the like are fantastical! It's all quite a beauty to behold, and while your Pokemon are obviously on guard duty for your new Snom, it's just as probable that they're admiring the scenery like you are.

You're searching for wonders and whimsy, and it doesn't take you long to find both. The natural dark of the forest,broken only by beams of daylight permeating the trees, is suddenly broken as light feeds in from a path ahead. You stop, entranced as little fireflies seem to gather together in droves, merging together to create balls of light. If you were to touch them, they were certainly leave a nasty burn, showing that they were actually fire balls in all the colours of the rainbow! How beautiful! In the second fork of your road, there might not be signs of magic, but you can hear the laughter of children playing and shouting joyfully together. It's pleasant to the ears and warming to the sun, especially as honestly... Most children aren't laughing and talking merrily for long before it dissolves into bickering or something of the sort. Besides, who knew that there was a human settlement so far into the forest? Or maybe they're a group of adventuring trainers far younger than yourself, taking a break from their exploration to let off some steam? Maybe they would even know about the pretty lights, and other things about these gambling, rambling roads?

What do you do, and where will you all go on this fine, wonderful day?
 
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Zorchic- You burst into the clearing, putting on your planned act. Starly gives you the information he has gathered, giving you more to go off. You show off the Frillish you'd managed to snag, despite Chace warning you not to fish during the Full Moon. Starly promptly points out that Chace had insulted you, causing you to erupt. You question the local before announcing yourself as an Aura Guardian, which would surely knock some sense into the foolish teen!

"Bahahahaha", Chace erupts in laughter, even Heath snickers a bit. "What the fuck is an Aura Guardian? Was that meant to mean something? Also you expect me to be impressed by that Frillish? If you struggled against then you truly are a rookie." As Chace continues to laugh, you ask Heath to release your Starly.

"Eh sure, it's yours so who am I to keep it from you", Heath releases the net, allowing Starly to fly back over to you. "Hey kid, don't suppose you want to try and help us get to the King of the Lake? We were expecting some backup but its fallen through. Chace said you were interested in the King...."

"There is no way I'm fighting alongside him!" Chace erupts, quickly snapping out of his state of hysterics.

Chace had been nothing but rude and aggressive, however his brother Heath seemed like a reasonable person. Perhaps you could come to some sort of agreement? Buizel looks to you, uncertain about the whole situation. Chace had mocked the Aura Guardians, surely you wouldn't let him get away with that?
Jake couldn't believe it. After him yelling at Chace, the boy still had the nerve to laugh at his skills. To make things even more offensive, he cursed at Aura Guardians. At least Heath had been nice enough so as to give Jake back his Starly. He let the Starling Pokémon settle on his gloved wrist.

"Alright, Chace, I can't believe how rude, mean, mocking, and prideful you've been!" Jake yelled. "What are you trying to pull? And for Arceus' sake, an Aura Guardian controls aura! Duh." He pulled a picture of an Aura Guardian in action out of his pocket and waved it in Chace's face. "Geez. You have a Pokédex, don't you? Just look it up." He was really ticked off at this boy's annoying behavior.

As for Chace's brother Heath, he seemed okay. "Um, Heath?" said Jake. "You need backup for the King? I'll show my skills. I've got a Lucario back home who held his own against a Gyarados—oh!"

Bonk! A Luxury Ball fell from the sky and dropped on Jake's head. It bounced off his forehead and landed in his open palm. He stared at it...where did it come from?...until a lightbulb went off in his head.

"Lucario!" Jake sent out his Pokémon from the Luxury Ball. "It's good to see you!" The trainer and Pokémon exchanged a quick hug, which Buizel quickly joined in.

Lucario grinned. It's all thanks to one of those mail birds. (Lucario had abilities of telepathy.)

"Anyway, now that you're here..." Jake said to Lucario. He turned to Heath again. "Now, what do you think? I myself would be happy to help out!"

Jake glared at Chace. "You're being exclusive. Can't you just hold on? It's mean to exclude someone just because they're not good enough. Besides, Frillish here could be of help. He could provide insights on the King and its location." Jake gestured at Frillish.

"Frill, Frillish," said the Floating Pokémon pridefully. He crossed his arms (tentacles?). Ha ha, you have no idea what's down in the lake.

Just then, Jake thought of something. He looked at his Pokémon, all four of them that were out of the Pokéballs right now. (He still had two Pokémon that were in their Pokéballs.) Buizel and Lucario winked at him, and the trainer winked back.
He turned to Chace and Heath. "Alright, how about this?" Jake offered. "I'll watch you guys try to get at the King. If it looks like you're stuck or in trouble or just have no luck, consider getting me to help. What do you think?" he asked the brothers.
 
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Faiyaa- You couldn't afford to wait for Marian, if you lost the Primarina, the Popplio could lose its life. Instead you instruct Apollo to stay behind, the Lanturn would serve as a beacon for Marian while keeping a Spotlight on you, hopefully making it easier for you to track it. You swim forward as fast as you can, you've no hope of matching the speed of the Primarina but you could at least follow its wake. It seems to be heading in a straight line, as if it has an intended destination. You're chest is beginning to ache as you swimming through the reef, doing your best to avoid running into any coral. You notice Apollo's light is beginning to fade, you've travelled quite a distance from him already. It is then that you spot something up ahead, some sort of stone structure. It takes a moment before you realise, it is the submerged portion of the ruins! The worn stone structure still seemed to be relatively stable, you can just make out the faint melody of the Primarina coming from inside. All signs pointed to the Primarina heading inside, but as you get close, two figures swim into few, blocking the entrance. The two Clawitzer brandish their oversized, cannon-like claws, it seems they don't want you to enter.

With no change in Apollo's Spotlight, you can only assume that Marian hasn't returned. What could be taking her so long? Perhaps she'd gotten lost? Gotten trapped herself? Or maybe she was struggling to find her bolt cutters? Either way, it seems like you're alone for now and if you want to get to the Primarina and injured Popplio, you will have to go through the Clawitzers.
It's been a minute lol.

With Apollo agreeing to remain behind and guide Marian to his location, Gary sped off after the shiny Primarina and the wounded Popplio as fast as he could swim. Clearly Gary was no match to keep up with the marine creatures in their natural environment, but he pushed himself as hard as he could out of fear of losing them and he could feel his chest tighten from the strain. Fortunately he did not have to swim too much farther as he saw them approach the underwater portion of the ruins and was able to slow down a little in order for his lungs to catch up with the rest of his body. The bad news? There were a pair of armored shellfish sitting at the entryway, as if they were guarding it.

Gary was familiar with the cannoned crustaceans; they were known as Clawitzer and as Gary hoped to evolve his own Clauncher into one someday, he knew well that their massive claws were not just for show. The two guardians seemed well intent on not letting Gary through, at least not without a fight first. He reached down to his Pokeball clip and pulled out a familiar Luxury Ball along with a Dive Ball. The Pokemon Gary had brought along on this expedition weren’t the most experienced in combat, but he knew he could count on them when the time was right, and right now was no exception.

“C’mon out, Pickle, Triton!” Gary held out the two balls and they popped open, revealing in a bright flash of sparkles a pair of diminutive shiny Pokemon. First was Pickle, the green and yellow Pyukumuku who fluttered down to the stone steps in front of the Clawitzers. Next up was a tiny blue and orange Wishiwashi, the miniature minnow fighting back tears as he put up a brave face in front of his foes. It was entirely possible that Gary’s feeble-looking Pokemon could have lured the Clawitzers into a false sense of security, but he didn’t intend on relying on such a tactic in this fight. He truly believed in their capabilities in the fight to come. “Let’s do this, guys! Show them what you’re made of!”

Pickle puffed out a small bubble of innards that formed a fist shape, punching the water before her and cried out, “Pyuu!” Triton echoed her cry with a “Shiii!” of his own, and as he did the water suddenly became a little darker while the current swirled around the area. From all directions tiny little sardines swarmed the shiny Wishiwashi, their Schooling clustering together and forming a massive bait ball. The school of fish continued to take shape, turning into that of an underwater behemoth; suddenly the Clawitzers were the ones who were outnumbered in this contest. “Alright, Triton, let’s start this off by trapping them in place with your Whirlpool! It doesn’t need to hold for particularly long; just long enough for Pickle to douse both Clawitzers with her Gastro Acid!” Gary knew that if he wanted to win, the first step would be to neutralize those giant cannons. “Pickle I want you to then follow it up by creating a Light Screen to protect both you and Triton! Triton, use Aqua Ring to constantly keep your health replenished!”
 
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TheKnightsFury: You opt to remain in hiding, letting your Pokemon to fend for themselves. Whether or not this backfires is about to be seen…

Totodile mostly ignores Bulbasaur’s predicament, trusting Bulbasaur can handle herself, and instead decides to obliterate the half-frozen Mightyena infront of him. It’s an open goal at this point, so he decides to make it overkill – releasing the restraints that had been binding him for a while now, he allows his body to transform and grow into a powerful Croconaw! The large water lizard grins and proceeds to destroy his helpless predator-turned-prey, smacking him across the head with a Brick Break so strong it instantly causes the wild dog to pass out from impact, with no need for any follow-up attack! *Croconaw gains 2 Levels!*

Bulbasaur, meanwhile, tries her best to keep her composure in the face of a massive hyena running straight at her with flames coming out of its mouth. She struggles to focus, attempting to use the new move she only just learned to blind the oncoming threat, but the enemy is moving way too fast and is already way too close! Her bulb begins to light up, but she instinctively closes her eyes once the flaming fangs are about to make contact… but then, nothing happens. No impact, no pain. She reopens her eyes one at a time, to find Mightyena sprawled on the ground mere inches away from her. It tripped! Talk about uncommonly bad luck… not that your partner is about to complain, as she extends her two vines high in the air and entwines her to make a single, large makeshift rope… then brings it crashing down at point blank, hitting the hound so hard it drives the enemy into the ground, cracks forming around the crater it causes! *Bulbasaur gains 2 Levels!*

“Holy crap dude!” shouts Cameron, no longer able to contain himself. “Your Pokemon are amazing! I… I guess I should’ve kept my mouth shut. But this is great! With you tagging along I’ll get that Sawsbuck photo for sure!”

Confidence renewed, the photographer leaps from behind the foliage and throws Croconaw and Bulbasaur a grinning thumbs-up. Then, he points ahead, urging you all to continue the search.

“No time to lose, these mutts delayed us way to much already! Come on, to glory!”

Commendable as his optimism may be (if not slightly annoying), he seems perhaps a bit overeager to venture even deeper into the forest. Who knows what other, possibly greater dangers you’ll run into? Is this wild goose chase worth it?...

Oblivious to your apprehension, Cameron marches onward, only to suddenly be hit atop the head by a falling Watmel Berry! Who knew those huge things grew up in trees? Talk about bad luck…

“Jeez! What the hell man? I coulda died!”

Amidst the commotion, you suddenly notice Bulbasaur make her way over to the fallen Pokemon the Mightyena were surrounding before you stepped in. The creature is weak, unable to regain its footing. On closer, more prolonged inspection, you realize it’s a black cat with red stripes…

What will you do?
 
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