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Unreal Archipelago: Zone of Mysteries

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Unreal Archipelago: Zone of Mysteries


Many know of Phantom Isle, the haunted theme park that has terrified all those who entered. But after years of adventuring across the island, some trainers dared to go further out to sea from the mainland. Here they quickly found a number of other land masses, each just beyond the horizon from the next, forming a perfect circle with Phantom Isle at its base, though some have claimed the islands take the true form of the darkest witchcraft itself, Phantom Isle being the quintessential element of Spirit in this reverse pentagram. The first to be discovered was deemed the Defiled Oasis, possibly once a place of fae magic and abundant beauty, destroyed by companies to hide their power plant meant to fuel Phantom Isle's theme park with electricity, its existence hidden from the rest of the world after the failure of the park. Those that believe the theory of witchcraft have stated that this place's destroyed terrain has all but devastated what once was a place of only the purest Air quality. Next came the Conflagrant Spire, a beautiful and lush rainforest island with its own towering volcano, dotted with relics of a civilization past. While some say the great fire of the island's volcano disproves the theory of witchcraft, others have pointed out that the altars point to sacrifices to the Earth itself, further supporting the horrid story. Then came the Quiescent Glacier, less a land mass than a strange and massive chunk of ice, having made its way here some time ago but refusing to go even an inch further. The stillness of the ice seems to have filled the missing elemental slot on its own, the tranquil Water here sitting peacefully where other islands show the constant signs of the tide. Finally came the Tranquil Lagoon, so named for its seeming normalcy in comparison to the rest of the islands, where trainers would soon call home for those who wished to live away from the mainland. Ever stoking the Fire of the hearth, the villagers here set forth to live away from the craziness of the mainland, by whatever means necessary.

Each place was distinctly different, yet their mysteries all seem they could be connected in some way. Voyage has been granted to all trainers from the mainland, hoping to discover the true secret behind this strange land, but adventurers beware, Phantom Isle is not the only place of terror among the Archipelago. Please note that only direct traffic from island to island is approved at this time, as the conspiracy theorists firmly believe that at the center of this Archipelago, deep beneathe the sea, lies the most ancient evil ever to take seat in Fizzytopia, a statement that simply cannot be ignored.




Phantom Isle
Please reply in SlateGray


Sitting at the far south of the Unreal Archipelago, Phantom Isle was once a large theme park with an accompanying hotel, the park incorporating a slew of rides, entertainment venues, and showcases, terrible events in the past caused the shutdown of the park for some time. With years now having passed, nobody can say for certain what the singular moment was that caused this downward spiral of the park's luck, but the final straw in its closure can be directly linked to the event wherein the Ghost Train ride caught fire, killing dozens of adults, children, and trainers. In its heyday the park held Contests, saw frequent friendly battles, and even allowed children to hire Pokemon for the day to keep them company or to battle with in special kiddie events. The hotel towering over the south side of the island was added only recently before the park had been shut down, meant to house those that wished to stay for more than a single day with their families and enjoy all of the attractions they could. Now, the park lingers with supernatural activity, an odd purple haze washing over the island causing it to be shrouded in a perpetual darkness as natural light no longer filters through. While it is known that the park once had a large variety of places to see, enough to accommodate large crowds for days on end, some locations seem to have disappeared forever, as though absorbed into the fog that now covers the Isle.

Sub Areas:

Rollerquaza:
The largest rollercoaster in the park, this ride is designed around the legendary Pokemon Rayquaza and its home, the Sky Pillar of the Hoenn region. The highest peak of the ride reaches, much like the Pokemon itself, high into the clouds above the fog shrouding the park. The final drop leading the rider to a darkened tunnel where people have apparently gone missing for days at a time, reporting a bizarre force as they plunged deep into the shadows.

The Funhouse: The name speaks for itself, though the fun you'll have might not be the sort of fun you are acquainted with. A strange entity exists in the building which seems to emanate evil from the walls and floors, causing even the most nimble of trainers to have trouble keeping their balance in the various rooms. The Funhouse even contains a Hall of Mirrors, an endless maze that may trap you for all time if you don't keep your wits about you.

Sideshow Alley: Contains all of the normal things you would find in a sideshow with one exception - a memorial wall set up with dozens of plaques in honor of the deceased children who never made it off the ride of a lifetime. Each plaque has a space for flowers to honor their memories if you wish, but beware, for the sad and gloomy atmosphere around here attracts more than curious trainers.

The Circus Tent: Want to see the show of a lifetime? Enter the Circus Tent and challenge the bloodthirty ghosts within to a battle upon the stage. It is said that you could once take a challenge of four of these beasts in a row in order to face the Champion - A Dark Pokemon whose identity remains a mystery as nobody has ever made it far enough to win.

Fortune Teller's Tent: Situated in the shadows cast by the majestic circus tent is a much smaller tent which once housed a mystical woman who was said to have powers beyond that of a regular human, being able to see not only into the past, but also into the future. She passed away not too long before the closure of the theme park but nobody thought anything of it, since she was getting on in years. Today, there is still a light coming from her tent, so could it be she still lingers in the theme park, waiting for her next customer?

Ghost Train: Enter if you dare - The Ghost Train, the site of the disaster responsible for the final closure of the theme park. Ghostly visits from children lost are reported to have scared many a construction crew away from this site while some of the strongest and darkest Pokemon of all are rumored to dwell within the burnt out remains of this once popular ride.

The Lobby: Upon entering the hotel's main doors, you reach a marble-floored lobby with a check-in desk and huge chandeliers that flicker ominously. Behind the desk lies most of the keys to the various hotels rooms, but an unseen power prevents you from taking more than one at a time. Attached is a gift shop selling theme park souvenirs, though you might find more than a keyring or two floating about there. A lone elevator sits at one end of the lobby, leading up to the rest of the rooms or down to the storeroom and casino.

Restaurant: Within the hotel and through a set of ornate double-doors lies what used to be one of the finest restaurants in the world. All of its tables and chairs remain untouched and the food seems to be frozen in time, no signs of decay at all even after all these years. Candelabras decorate the tables but they have been seen flying around the room. The kitchen has become a dangerous place, however, located through a saloon door behind the food counters. The walls, still lined with the sinister, sharp utensils previously used by the various chefs glint in the moonlight and seem to sway on their own. A wrong move could lead to you being the latest delicacy.

Storeroom: A vast room filled with everything the hotel might need and plenty of spare hotel furniture of all kinds. Pokemon have taken the furniture as an invitation to make themselves at home and quite a large variety of Pokemon can be found here not wanting to be disturbed by anything, let alone humans.

Members-Only Casino: Situated beneath the hotel is a large casino that was previously members-only. Reports speak of a barrier that you still seemingly cannot pass without possessing one of the members' cards handed out to adults who visited the hotel and casino in its heyday, though these reports have yet to be verified. A visit to this casino and you might end up gambling more than you bargained for, so beware...

The Upper Floors: There are eight upper floors to the hotel where the park's guests stayed, and some still dwell. One great mystery seems to be surrounding the sixth floor, or lack thereof, as the entire level seems to have vanished. Curious, as it's clearly visible from the outside, it just doesn't appear to exist within. The key to room thirteen is also rumored to be located somewhere within the hotel, its sinister contents being protected as best they can. While some believe these mysteries may be connected, the secrets of the hotel are likely to never truly be unraveled.




Defiled Oasis
Please reply in OliveDrab


A lush forest, teeming with natural life, both flora and fauna, barely touched by human hands. That's what the Defiled Oasis, the southeastern isle in the Archipelago used to be, before it was ravaged for its natural resources to run a coal burning power plant built on its coast. Constant digging of new tunnels and collapsing of those deemed too dangerous has seen the island reduced to a mere shell of what it once was, and while much of the previous wildlife yet remains, invasive species introduced by the companies looking to take advantage of the island run amok, driving many of those that once called this place home into hiding. The plant now abandoned, having once been used to power none other than Phantom Isle itself, waste products leak through the stonework and into the earth, tainting it and leaving the plant life sickened the closer you get to large building, the forested area becoming more of a bog as you approach. The plant itself remains largely intact, now serving as a home for Pokemon driven from their previous places of life, as well as those that would call them prey. Disturbing those that still remain may be costly to the average adventurer, as some of those within may bite the hand that feeds in order to prevent further destruction of the Oasis. While not exactly a hospitable place, many environmentalists have been coming here since the island's discovery, looking to repair the damage that has been done.

Sub Areas:

The Splintered Wood:
The once tall trees here have long since fallen, the ground cracked throughout the woods from the rumbling of the earth below. The now rotted wood becoming the earth itself as small vegetation yet survives serves as a reminder that perhaps one day the Oasis may return to its previous state, but for now the land is filled with constant skirmish between those that used to call this place home and those that have taken residence here by necessity rather than birth.

The Tainted Bog: Waste leaking into the ground has left the ground here deteriorated, turning what was soft, fresh soil into thick, slimy mud in the area surrounding the Power Plant. The native wildlife has long since left this area, now only inhabitated by the most hardy of Pokemon as the trees themselves have become petrified and the shrubbery long since has died. The taint of the area has twisted some of its denizens, who knows what sickened creatures one may encounter within the muck?

Coal Burning Plant: Once pristine tile floor now covered with dirt, white walls scratched and muddied, those who ran the Power Plant left not long after Phantom Isle shut down, and took most everything of value with them. Still, the reception desk and offices here with their cheap wooden doors make for easy living space for Pokemon not normally suited for life on the island, and while the Plant is hardly being run anymore, it has found use as a handy staying place for a near endlessly rotating series of helpful hands wishing to bring the island back to its former glory days. The rest of the plant, a large series of rooms with both furnaces and coal storage, has been deemed too dangerous to be used, though any amount of repair and cleanup is sure to be appreciated.

Waste Storage: By regulation, all waste is to be kept above ground level, where it cannot easily affect the soil of the area. But with no easily located storage facilities to be found, regulations must have been second priority to profits for this particular company. One can only hope that a dedicated environmentalist some day finds this hidden cache so that progress can truly be made here.

Crumbling Mines: The soft soil of the island hid a small mountain of coal, but to get to it the companies responsible for this travesty had to dig, and the soil itself was not wont to holding firm as tunnels. Stretching to and fro below the island, the mines have entrances and exits strewn about near everywhere, but whether any given path remains intact is another story, as collapses happen regularly. With tunnels having been shut down regularly, this may be the best place to find anything left behind when the plant was closed, whatever these items may be. These deep running tunnels allow for quick escape routes for any creatures considered prey, but the corridors have many dark corners where the most cunning of predators lie in wait.

The True Oasis: A small, crystal clear pond can be found at the center of the island, surrounded by what few lush plants remain. Many of the island's denizens have fled here, safe from the introduced predators in the area. Unfortunately, sheer cliffs surround the area, meaning the only safe way down is through the Mines, though a smart trainer could perhaps get down with the right transportation.




Conflagrant Spire
Please reply in IndianRed


At the northeast of the Archipelago can be found the Conflagrant Spire, an active volcano that has formed into an incredibly tall and thin tower of a mountain. The spire itself finds itself to the far west side of the island, with the land below stretching and reaching out, as if attempting to grab out at the island far to the south. The nutrient rich soil hosts lush plantlife and a wide variety of fauna, leaving this what would be the most naturally beautiful of all the islands. That beauty hides a horrible secret, however, relics of times past that hint at terrible rituals that were once conducted here in the name of ancient deities. Those who have braved the island have yet to find anything resembling human life, yet these horrid sites remain clean, as though used only yesterday. It is unknown when the Spire last erupted, let alone when it will again, but a temple at its top gives hint that it must have been some time ago.

Sub Areas:

The Ashen Coast:
West of the spire is where all ash falls, thanks to the breeze created by the change in weather condition of the Archipelago due to the constant cold air from the Quiescent Glacier attempting to suck in the heat from so far away. While the ash falls into the ocean long before reaching any of the other islands, the coast here is kept rich by what percentage of it lands here, leading to healthy Pokemon happy to roam the area for the small foliage that pokes through the sand.

Volcanic Rainforest: The heated water creates a heavy amount of humidity, resulting in regular rainfall that has nourished rich plant life on the island's entire eastern side. Large and various species of both flora and fauna can be found everywhere here, a natural ecosystem undisturbed for a period of time long lost to the ages. Within the forest are speckled a multitude of altars, which are believed to have been used for terrifying rituals, each depicting a more terrible act than the last in the long lost names of unknown deities.

Thermal Cliffs: What at first seems to be impassibly steep cliffs turns out to be carved paths spiraling along the mountainside in all directions, all of which look to have been made as if by hand and well maintained. Small lava spouts break out in various locations, and the resulting thermals make for excellent winds for airborne Pokemon large and small, while what spouts have cooled have been turned largely into dens used by those that would feast on their nests.

Bubbling Caldera: After traveling only a short ways up the Spire, one may find themselves at a large caldera jutting from the side of the mountain and over some of the rainforest below. The heat of the volcano below leaves the water warm by nature, and within can be found many a species that appreciates the fresh water as opposed to that of the sea. The bottom of the caldera glitters as the light from above catches upon small specks of glass formed from the sand and intense heat over time. One should be careful approaching the falls, as it is said to be the perfect place to toss away a life in dedication to the island gods.

Cracked Canyon: The Caldera constantly overflows from the regular heavy rainfall, the resulting waterfall creating a large canyon over the years that splits the Rainforest in two, with old wood and rope bridges, oddly well maintained, stretched about from side to side. While the canyon does cut deep into the mountain itself, it is only slightly above sea level, resulting in a slow flowing river as it reaches out to sea and the various paths meet the beach. The running water carries anything that should fall from the Caldera, accidentally or otherwise, out to sea towards the center of the archipelago, to sate the thirst of the oceans below.


Cursed Temple: At the top of the Spire can be found a series of rope bridges the lead within the bowl of the volcano itself, to what seems to be a large temple carved into the volcano's side. While one is sure to find many great mysteries and treasures here, this area is extremely dangerous, riddled with traps and filled to the brim with ferocious beasts.



Quiescent Glacier
Please reply in PowderBlue


An oddity to be sure, this glacier is more than enough to sink the grandest of ships and then some, measuring just as large as any of the other islands, though the term is definitely loose here. Having at some point floated into the southwestern point of the Archipelago, the glacier seems to have halted its movement entirely, a phenomenon unknown to the scientific world. Since its discovery, some researchers have set up on its base to study this curious event, only to repeatedly end up with more questions than they have answers. From strange frozen formations on the outside to a rumored endless void within, every inch of this place teems with beauty, though it may be difficult to describe it as natural. Between these landmarks and the halted movement in the sea, many believe that this glacier was called here, destined to fill the empty slot of the circle of islands for some reason. Whether staring into the white expanse above the island, or delving into the frozen caverns below, adventures are likely to lose, or perhaps even find, a part of themselves in these slopes.

Sub Areas:

Base Camp:
A hodgepodge collection of various mobile scientific trailers, this camp makes up the homes and workplaces as the researchers here. A rare few are typically around, usually only to process whatever labs they need to run before returning to the field, desperate to discover the secrets of the so-called island.

Frozen Expanse: The base of the glacier is covered with snow, the cold from the area creating enough of a chill to affect the weather itself. The snowy fields are riddled with strange ice sculptures that branch upwards like trees, a primary point of interest to those researchers less willing to explore further into the freezing "island".

Avalanche Hills: Leading up to the peak of the glacier are some more worn down mounds of ice, forming large hills covered with snow that rolls down the mountain in the event of an avalanche. The deep snow hides endless mysteries, including many entrances to the glacial caves. While there doesn't seem to be much too out of the ordinary here, research is regularly slowed as snow falls off the faux mountain, covering any areas left unattended for too long. The endless sea of white can blind the eyes and may blank the mind if not careful, leaving one to rely on their other senses should they ever wish to make it back to camp.

Shimmering Peak: Coated top to bottom in thick snow with steep paths made of nothing but the ice of the glacier itself, the path to the peak is nothing shy of treacherous. To make matters worse, the ice mountain pierces the clouds at what can only be assumed to be the halfway point. The trek is perilous and should only be taken by the most tenacious of adventurers, but those willing to brave the wind and snow may find that not only glory but rarities beyond imagine await them at the top.

Ancient Wreckage: Those capable of underwater travel may find themselves wanting to examine below the surface of the water surrounding the Glacier. Here can be found wrecks of ships from all periods of time, frozen to the side of island as it moved through the sea over the years, collecting debris as it passed over ships whose passengers never made it home. Nobody knows what rare antiquities may be found here, but the researchers are more than interested to find out where this glacier has been over the many years it has existed.

Rainbow Caverns: Entrances dotted all throughout the hills, caverns run through the mountain, lit by what sunlight filters through the clouds. The light passes through the ice of the glacier, refracting and reflecting throughout the mountain, causing near every surface withing to radiate with ever-changing colors. The caverns are not overly difficult to navigate, but if you enter you may find yourself not wanting to leave, a curse that has befallen many a researcher, itching to explore every last nook and cranny and see every color imaginable and then some.

Perpetual Spiral: At the center of the caverns lies a large pit, the light and colors of the area disappearing into the center as it seems to stretch on forever. With the glacier known to not be connected to the ocean floor, the fact that this spiraling staircase seems to go on forever befuddles even the most astute of researchers, and any information as to why this assumed illusion occurs is sure to be met with reward.




Tranquil Lagoon
Please reply in RoyalBlue


The northwest island, the Tranquil Lagoon has been deemed the only island in the Archipelago currently capable of sustaining a village. As such, many trainers have taken to building their homes here, huts and cabins of all shapes and sizes built along the sparkling shore of the crescent moon shaped land mass. Floating pathways made of wood have been constructed over the Lagoon itself, allowing for easy transportation all along the island. While those who have moved here are happy to have done so, there is always one dispute or another abound due to the current lack of any actual governing force, so the helping hand of other trainers is often wanted, not that the disputes ever seem to dampen the ever-smiling faces that greet anyone who steps ashore here. The island itself lacks much vegetation, instead being covered entirely in shimmering white sand. Instead those living here farm algae and other plant life from the coral reef around the island, and fish and hunt along the Lagoon and island itself.

Sub Areas:

Lagoon Village:
The village makes up most of the coast, both inside and outside the lagoon. The economy here is largely based on trade, so trade disputes are a common occurrence, but at the end of the day most villagers are more than willing to lend a hand to their fellow man or woman as they make their homes here. While smiles can be found abundant even at the end of the most serious of arguments, some villagers seem content to move into huts that have been strangely abandoned despite the only recent move to the island.

Crescent Desert: The inner island is made largely of shimmering white sand, a veritable desert where few have made their homes due to the coast being such a beautiful sight. As a result, most of the non-aquatic life here has made its way inwards to avoid the increasing hustle and bustle of town life, or perhaps they know something mere visitors to this village never will.

Crystal Lagoon: Shimmering and crystal clear, the lagoon within the crescent moon shaped island resembles a deep blue pool, opening itself up towards the center of the Archipelago. The floating wooden bridges above make for good fishing spots for the town, as well as comfortable resting places for more amphibious Pokemon that no longer wish to go all the way to the shore. While members of the town regularly enter the water for relaxation or to find vegetation, few stray far from the shore, let alone to the center of the deep blue below.


Vibrant Reef: Beneath the waves to the northern and western sides of the island can be found a gorgeous coral reef, where colorful sea life makes its home. The existence of the reef goes to show that the island, while not far above sea level at its highest point, has clearly been here for some time. Divers come here regularly for the vegetation, as well as for the many beautiful natural treasures usable for trade on the island that can be found here. Tampering with any of this beauty is ill advised, as the villagers are oddly overprotective of the reef more than even their own island homes.
 
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Conflagrant Spire

Please reply in IndianRed


At the northeast of the Archipelago can be found the Conflagrant Spire, an active volcano that has formed into an incredibly tall and thin tower of a mountain. The spire itself finds itself to the far west side of the island, with the land below stretching and reaching out, as if attempting to grab out at the island far to the south. The nutrient rich soil hosts lush plantlife and a wide variety of fauna, leaving this what would be the most naturally beautiful of all the islands. That beauty hides a horrible secret, however, relics of times past that hint at terrible rituals that were once conducted here in the name of ancient deities. Those who have braved the island have yet to find anything resembling human life, yet these horrid sites remain clean, as though used only yesterday. It is unknown when the Spire last erupted, let alone when it will again, but a temple at its top gives hint that it must have been some time ago.

Cursed Temple: At the top of the Spire can be found a series of rope bridges the lead within the bowl of the volcano itself, to what seems to be a large temple carved into the volcano's side. While one is sure to find many great mysteries and treasures here, this area is extremely dangerous, riddled with traps and filled to the brim with ferocious beasts.
As soon as the words "Cursed Temple" entered into Bill's ears, the trainer was all but packed to go explore it. The trainer had a history of breaking into dangerous temples and the like to find mystical items and learn their secrets. To him, this was no different. His Finneon can be a testament to just how much he likes pissing off the gods. The trainer had his climbing gear to scale the mountain itself before it goes to the rope bridges. The building was probably very old and filled to the brim with ancient mystical artifacts. Accompanying him was Megas the Golett to his side, and Silver the Squirtle on the other. The trainer looked at the two and said "Okay, here we are. Ready?"

Megas started to flex, showing off what muscles it would have if it were an organic being. This was usually its way of saying to the world or at least its trainer "I'm always ready. Let's do this!" It stood assuredly on a raised rock, standing about chest level to Bill to establish the dominence. Bill always thought this behavior was funny.

Silver, on the other hand, was a lot more carefree and bouncy. The Water type jumped for joy around the trainer, all the while going "Squirtle Squirt!" The rubble on the unmarked path below the Squirtle started to move around with the turtle's movements, starting to create a path more traveled, so to speak.

Bill had other Pokemon on his belt, of course, but these two were always out of their Pokeballs ready to aid him in whatever way they can. Bill approached the first of many rope bridges to try and cross to the other side, where the real fun begins. He was hoping that the bridges themselves would be easy enough to cross so that he could get to the meat of the operation immediately.
 
Poison-type Trainer
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Unreal Archipelago: Zone of Mysteries


Many know of Phantom Isle, the haunted theme park that has terrified all those who entered. But after years of adventuring across the island, some trainers dared to go further out to sea from the mainland. Here they quickly found a number of other land masses, each just beyond the horizon from the next, forming a perfect circle with Phantom Isle at its base, though some have claimed the islands take the true form of the darkest witchcraft itself, Phantom Isle being the quintessential element of Spirit in this reverse pentagram. The first to be discovered was deemed the Defiled Oasis, possibly once a place of fae magic and abundant beauty, destroyed by companies to hide their power plant meant to fuel Phantom Isle's theme park with electricity, its existence hidden from the rest of the world after the failure of the park. Those that believe the theory of witchcraft have stated that this place's destroyed terrain has all but devastated what once was a place of only the purest Air quality. Next came the Conflagrant Spire, a beautiful and lush rainforest island with its own towering volcano, dotted with relics of a civilization past. While some say the great fire of the island's volcano disproves the theory of witchcraft, others have pointed out that the altars point to sacrifices to the Earth itself, further supporting the horrid story. Then came the Quiescent Glacier, less a land mass than a strange and massive chunk of ice, having made its way here some time ago but refusing to go even an inch further. The stillness of the ice seems to have filled the missing elemental slot on its own, the tranquil Water here sitting peacefully where other islands show the constant signs of the tide. Finally came the Tranquil Lagoon, so named for its seeming normalcy in comparison to the rest of the islands, where trainers would soon call home for those who wished to live away from the mainland. Ever stoking the Fire of the hearth, the villagers here set forth to live away from the craziness of the mainland, by whatever means necessary.

Each place was distinctly different, yet their mysteries all seem they could be connected in some way. Voyage has been granted to all trainers from the mainland, hoping to discover the true secret behind this strange land, but adventurers beware, Phantom Isle is not the only place of terror among the Archipelago. Please note that only direct traffic from island to island is approved at this time, as the conspiracy theorists firmly believe that at the center of this Archipelago, deep beneathe the sea, lies the most ancient evil ever to take seat in Fizzytopia, a statement that simply cannot be ignored.




Conflagrant Spire

Please reply in IndianRed


At the northeast of the Archipelago can be found the Conflagrant Spire, an active volcano that has formed into an incredibly tall and thin tower of a mountain. The spire itself finds itself to the far west side of the island, with the land below stretching and reaching out, as if attempting to grab out at the island far to the south. The nutrient rich soil hosts lush plantlife and a wide variety of fauna, leaving this what would be the most naturally beautiful of all the islands. That beauty hides a horrible secret, however, relics of times past that hint at terrible rituals that were once conducted here in the name of ancient deities. Those who have braved the island have yet to find anything resembling human life, yet these horrid sites remain clean, as though used only yesterday. It is unknown when the Spire last erupted, let alone when it will again, but a temple at its top gives hint that it must have been some time ago.

Sub Areas:

Volcanic Rainforest:
The heated water creates a heavy amount of humidity, resulting in regular rainfall that has nourished rich plant life on the island's entire eastern side. Large and various species of both flora and fauna can be found everywhere here, a natural ecosystem undisturbed for a period of time long lost to the ages. Within the forest are speckled a multitude of altars, which are believed to have been used for terrifying rituals, each depicting a more terrible act than the last in the long lost names of unknown deities.
"...following my interview with one Keith Masters, and the subsequent establishment of my laboratory at Sludge Wave Coast, I was also able to locate a singular wild .4 in the FIzzytopian Desert. Although I failed in my attempts to catch it, this discovery nevertheless cements the fact that these Pokémon are indeed not restricted to the Kanto region. Thus, today I set out for the Conflagrant Spire, a volcanic island in the Unreal Archipelago- a name which, might I add, inspires great confidence- in the hopes of making further discoveries in my endeavor to study cryptopokology in the Fizzytopia region. If similar conditions to Cinnabar Island in the Kanto region can be found here, then there may very well be big discoveries to be made." At this point, Eddie hit the stop button on his tape recorder. "Phew," he sighed, albeit with an excited grin. "I can't wait to see what we can find, Hermione," he said, addressing the slightly larger-than-average Weedle on his shoulder.

"Weedle, Weedle," Hermione nodded in agreement.

"Yes... Missingno. and 'M are most famously found on the eastern shores of Cinnabar," stated Eddie. "So the eastern shores of another volcanic island, one contained within an island chain literally called the Unreal Archipelago... that sounds promising, to say the least."

"Hard to argue with that logic," came a chuckle. This was from behind Eddie and his Weedle- the duo were aboard a boat, the Banette's Revenge, and the words were spoken by her captain. "Hope you guys can find something here- I wanna hear all about it on the trip back."

Eddie grinned. "You can count on it, Keith," he said. "You're certain you can't come ashore with us?" he asked.

"Much as I'd love to, got quite a bit on my plate already today," Keith shrugged apologetically. "Me and Willa already agreed we'd get going on planning our wedding before you asked me this favor."

"Understandable," nodded Eddie. "I congratulate you once more on your engagement," he added.

"Thanks, man," Keith nodded back. "Alright... Conflagrant Spire, that should be it," he added, pointing just off the port bow.

"Ah! Indeed, yes, I believe so," said Eddie, adjusting his glasses as he spoke.

"Then hard to port we go!" Keith declared, turning the ship's steering wheel.

And soon, Eddie and Hermione were ashore, and the Banette's Revenge was headed back to Sludge Wave Coast. Eddie wasn't concerned- Keith had agreed to return later to pick him up, so for now they were free to explore the Volcanic Rainforest that took up the entire east coast of the island. "The east coast of the island... Missingno. and 'M tend to appear on the east coast of Cinnabar," Eddie said, once more speaking into his tape recorder. "Therefore it makes perfect sense to begin the search here. The first thing we must be on the lookout for- abnormally powerful Pokémon," he stated. "They tend to congregate in areas where Missingno. and 'M nest." He stopped recording, stowing his tape recorder back in his bag. "Grandpa Oldman knows this especially well," he said. "He'd like to meet you, Hermione, I'm sure- he's quite familiar with the Weedle species, it would surely blow his mind to meet one as powerful as you."

"Weedle, Weedle," Hermione responded, though she was already looking around, as though in search for something.

"Ah, yes, of course," nodded Eddie. "Into the Volcanic Rainforest we venture, then. Come, Hermione- we've mysteries to uncover!" he declared, the young cryptopokologist setting off at once, his eyes peeled for anything of interest.
 
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Doesn't Like Change
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CyberBlastoise - Hearing of the Cursed Temple built into the bowl of the volcano high to the peak of the Conflagrant Spire, this seems like the perfect opportunity to spit in the face of the gods themselves. Utilizing your trusty climbing gear makes the trek up the Thermal Cliffs far easier than it otherwise would have been, and you find yourself staring down one of the many wooden rope bridges stretching along various paths into the volcano itself and to the temple carved into the stone, many entrances stretching deep into the bowl.

With Silver and Megas at the ready, a trek across this bridge is finally in order to make your way into the Temple. Strangely, the rope and wooden planks of the bridge are nothing shy of pristine, with nary a sway from the wind caused by the thermals nor a creak of the wood despite these bridges having existed over the intense heat here for some time. This particular bridge stretches almost exactly across the bowl's center, sloping downwards at a sharp angle to reach an alcove some twenty feet above the bubbling lava of the volcano.

From here, there are a clear two entrances before you, one a large, intricate arch covered in many a glyph, while the second is much smaller in size, barely taller than the average door frame, with barely any decoration to bring note to it. The smaller opening is partially covered by a large slab of rock, leaving only room for small Pokemon to pass through, while the larger entrance is completely uncovered, revealing a massive hall leading into the Temple. Further, a second bridge connects to this alcove, leading to another alcove just nearby at a slightly higher elevation where a small, cave like entrance situated between two bird-like statues can be seen.

Missingno. Master - Stepping off of the Banette's Revenge in preparation to explore the Conflagrant Spire in hopes of finding something as rare and mysterious as Missingno. or 'M on this tropical volcanic island, you decide that you and your Weedle, Hermoine, are best set looking for powerful Pokemon in order to get a step in the right direction. With the setup of the island, the eastern side is covered by the jungle of the Volcanic Rainforest, the gargantuan plants having made a healthy home here thanks to the nutrient rich soil, the very same nutrients that may allow for healthy growth of powerful Pokemon.

The Rainforest is more than lush, but oddly peaceful, with little in the way of visible wildlife or even tracks thereof. Yet a clear path appears before you where the trees and various flora spread apart from each other with ease. Small drops of water from the humid air collecting on the leaves drip along the area, creating a soothing sound throughout the area.

The path comes shortly to a small clearing, wherein lies a small altar made of stone sat atop a raised slab made up of several other stones. The slab, as well as the altar itself, are completely free of anything even resembling dirt or dust, and are dry as a bone even though the surrounding area is soaked by dripping water. The altar, made of a singular large stone brick carved into the shape of the head of a jackal, holds atop it a singular candle, lit yet with nary a drop of its own wax having melted at this time. At its base are a series of letters carved into the stone.

"ENMS IG N ASOG"
 
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Missingno. Master - Stepping off of the Banette's Revenge in preparation to explore the Conflagrant Spire in hopes of finding something as rare and mysterious as Missingno. or 'M on this tropical volcanic island, you decide that you and your Weedle, Hermoine, are best set looking for powerful Pokemon in order to get a step in the right direction. With the setup of the island, the eastern side is covered by the jungle of the Volcanic Rainforest, the gargantuan plants having made a healthy home here thanks to the nutrient rich soil, the very same nutrients that may allow for healthy growth of powerful Pokemon.

The Rainforest is more than lush, but oddly peaceful, with little in the way of visible wildlife or even tracks thereof. Yet a clear path appears before you where the trees and various flora spread apart from each other with ease. Small drops of water from the humid air collecting on the leaves drip along the area, creating a soothing sound throughout the area.

The path comes shortly to a small clearing, wherein lies a small altar made of stone sat atop a raised slab made up of several other stones. The slab, as well as the altar itself, are completely free of anything even resembling dirt or dust, and are dry as a bone even though the surrounding area is soaked by dripping water. The altar, made of a singular large stone brick carved into the shape of the head of a jackal, holds atop it a singular candle, lit yet with nary a drop of its own wax having melted at this time. At its base are a series of letters carved into the stone.

"ENMS IG N ASOG"
Eddie and Hermione looked all around, taking in every detail of their surroundings. "Incredible," Eddie murmured. He started recording again, speaking into his tape recorder. "The plants on this island are growing to gargantuan proportions, indicating fertile, nutrient-rich soil. This shows promise, as the soil on Cinnabar Island is similarly rich in nutrients, and there is an established link between fertile soil and the healthy growth of Onix at the very least. It is for these reasons Cinnabar's status as a volcanic island is theorized to be a critical factor in its levels of cryptopokological activity- perhaps such conditions are ideal for more Pokémon than merely Onix, and allow Pokémon to thrive abnormally well, such as the kinds that tend to gather where Missingno. and 'M nest." He stopped recording. "Very peaceful," he noted. "I'm not seeing many Pokémon... or any at all, if I'm being honest. Hermione?"

"Weedle," Hermione shook her head.

"Hm," frowned Eddie. "We appear to be off to something of a slow start. That said, the day is young. Surely we've only just scratched the surface. After all, there's a very clear path here. Seemingly naturally formed, too. I must admit I'm curious about it."

"Weedle, Weedle," Hermione nodded in agreement as Eddie continued to follow said path.

And soon, they came to a clearing. "Oh!" Eddie murmured. "What have we here?" Tape recorder back out, he approached the slab of stones and the altar atop it. "Our explorations have thus far uncovered no Pokémon, but have led us to a clearing in the rainforest, in which there appears to be a raised slab formed by numerous stones specifically arranged, with a stone altar on top of it, carved into an intricate shape from what appears to be a singular rock," he observed. "Strangely, the slab and the altar are dry as a Cubone, despite the surrounding area being soaked by dripping water. And... atop the altar, I see a candle, lit, yet with no wax dripping. Was this recently done? Did I just miss something? Or is there something else at work here?" he inquired, adjusting his glasses with his free hand. "And... at the base, I see a series of letters carved into the stone," he continued. "'ENMS IG N ASOG'... The mystery deepens." He stopped recording. "This clearly means something, Hermione," he stated. "But what? Is it a different language, some kind of code? An anagram? Of course, you hear about the realm of Glitch City, with its seemingly arbitrary placements of numbers and letters... You've been there with Keith, yes?"

"Weedle," Hermione nodded, remembering that adventure well. Of course, her only real contribution that day was taking on a Kangaskhan back when she was a lot less capable in battle, but she'd asked Myrtle and Helena for more information afterwards.

Eddie, meanwhile, had his PokéGear out, and was taking pictures of the altar and slab, making sure to get a good one of the candle and the seemingly random letters. He had no idea how relevant any of this was to his studies, but he intended to find out, continuing to think hard about what the letters could mean.

Hermione then started sniffing around, intent on finding things out in her own way- Weedle boasted one distinctive advantage over their evolutionary relatives; namely, an extremely acute sense of smell. Hermione reasoned that it wasn't outside the realm of possibility that someone could have very recently been here to light the candle, and if that was the case, perhaps their scent still lingered. Eddie, noticing this, took one of Hermione's notebooks and ink bottles out of his backpack, to make it easier for Hermione to communicate her findings to him- dipping her tail stinger in ink and using it as a pen was second nature to her by this point, as evidenced by how years of doing this have irreversibly dyed said stinger jet black. Nothing was coming to Eddie about the letters at the moment, so any sort of clues they could uncover here would be greatly appreciated.
 
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Unreal Archipelago: Zone of Mysteries


Many know of Phantom Isle, the haunted theme park that has terrified all those who entered. But after years of adventuring across the island, some trainers dared to go further out to sea from the mainland. Here they quickly found a number of other land masses, each just beyond the horizon from the next, forming a perfect circle with Phantom Isle at its base, though some have claimed the islands take the true form of the darkest witchcraft itself, Phantom Isle being the quintessential element of Spirit in this reverse pentagram. The first to be discovered was deemed the Defiled Oasis, possibly once a place of fae magic and abundant beauty, destroyed by companies to hide their power plant meant to fuel Phantom Isle's theme park with electricity, its existence hidden from the rest of the world after the failure of the park. Those that believe the theory of witchcraft have stated that this place's destroyed terrain has all but devastated what once was a place of only the purest Air quality. Next came the Conflagrant Spire, a beautiful and lush rainforest island with its own towering volcano, dotted with relics of a civilization past. While some say the great fire of the island's volcano disproves the theory of witchcraft, others have pointed out that the altars point to sacrifices to the Earth itself, further supporting the horrid story. Then came the Quiescent Glacier, less a land mass than a strange and massive chunk of ice, having made its way here some time ago but refusing to go even an inch further. The stillness of the ice seems to have filled the missing elemental slot on its own, the tranquil Water here sitting peacefully where other islands show the constant signs of the tide. Finally came the Tranquil Lagoon, so named for its seeming normalcy in comparison to the rest of the islands, where trainers would soon call home for those who wished to live away from the mainland. Ever stoking the Fire of the hearth, the villagers here set forth to live away from the craziness of the mainland, by whatever means necessary.

Each place was distinctly different, yet their mysteries all seem they could be connected in some way. Voyage has been granted to all trainers from the mainland, hoping to discover the true secret behind this strange land, but adventurers beware, Phantom Isle is not the only place of terror among the Archipelago. Please note that only direct traffic from island to island is approved at this time, as the conspiracy theorists firmly believe that at the center of this Archipelago, deep beneathe the sea, lies the most ancient evil ever to take seat in Fizzytopia, a statement that simply cannot be ignored.






Tranquil Lagoon

Please reply in RoyalBlue


The northwest island, the Tranquil Lagoon has been deemed the only island in the Archipelago currently capable of sustaining a village. As such, many trainers have taken to building their homes here, huts and cabins of all shapes and sizes built along the sparkling shore of the crescent moon shaped land mass. Floating pathways made of wood have been constructed over the Lagoon itself, allowing for easy transportation all along the island. While those who have moved here are happy to have done so, there is always one dispute or another abound due to the current lack of any actual governing force, so the helping hand of other trainers is often wanted, not that the disputes ever seem to dampen the ever-smiling faces that greet anyone who steps ashore here. The island itself lacks much vegetation, instead being covered entirely in shimmering white sand. Instead those living here farm algae and other plant life from the coral reef around the island, and fish and hunt along the Lagoon and island itself.

Sub Areas:

Lagoon Village:
The village makes up most of the coast, both inside and outside the lagoon. The economy here is largely based on trade, so trade disputes are a common occurrence, but at the end of the day most villagers are more than willing to lend a hand to their fellow man or woman as they make their homes here. While smiles can be found abundant even at the end of the most serious of arguments, some villagers seem content to move into huts that have been strangely abandoned despite the only recent move to the island.
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"I feel like such a tourist," Slash remarked to the Popplio he carried in his arms, stepping off the boat that took them to the Tranquil Lagoon. "Po po!" she replied back in agreement. Oh, well, he thought. He guessed he'd just have to embrace it. "Come on, Caprina, let's look around. I hear the settlement here has plenty of Trainers to battle. And if you behave, maybe we'll go to the reef and have some fun there, as well. You'd like that, right, girl?"

"Po! Li po!" she responded, enthusiastically.

Sightseeing here was pretty interesting. On the surface, it seemed to be a pretty basic trade town, boring even, but there were some oddities about the area that somehow made everything all the more interesting as a whole. The village folks' creepy, eternal smiles were warm and inviting, but still somehow off-putting when every person he found around the town seemed to have the exact same smile. The wooden walkways- probably teak- had a little give to them, which made them feel a little dangerous despite the fact they were clearly safe enough for heavy, frequent travel. The dwellings also seemed to be weirdly dated, out of style, but this place was only settled relatively recently.

He shook his head sharply. He was probably just letting the creepy stories he'd heard of the Phantom Island mess with his imagination. This place was fine, this weirdness was all in his head. He needed a good battle to clear his mind. Then he'd be able to really appreciate this place for its beauty.

He flagged down a passing smiling settler. "Excuse me," he said. "I was wondering if there was an area of this village where Trainers have Pokemon battles? I'm just off a long boat ride and I need to unwind with a good fight."

"Po!"
 
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Unreal Archipelago: Zone of Mysteries


Many know of Phantom Isle, the haunted theme park that has terrified all those who entered. But after years of adventuring across the island, some trainers dared to go further out to sea from the mainland. Here they quickly found a number of other land masses, each just beyond the horizon from the next, forming a perfect circle with Phantom Isle at its base, though some have claimed the islands take the true form of the darkest witchcraft itself, Phantom Isle being the quintessential element of Spirit in this reverse pentagram. The first to be discovered was deemed the Defiled Oasis, possibly once a place of fae magic and abundant beauty, destroyed by companies to hide their power plant meant to fuel Phantom Isle's theme park with electricity, its existence hidden from the rest of the world after the failure of the park. Those that believe the theory of witchcraft have stated that this place's destroyed terrain has all but devastated what once was a place of only the purest Air quality. Next came the Conflagrant Spire, a beautiful and lush rainforest island with its own towering volcano, dotted with relics of a civilization past. While some say the great fire of the island's volcano disproves the theory of witchcraft, others have pointed out that the altars point to sacrifices to the Earth itself, further supporting the horrid story. Then came the Quiescent Glacier, less a land mass than a strange and massive chunk of ice, having made its way here some time ago but refusing to go even an inch further. The stillness of the ice seems to have filled the missing elemental slot on its own, the tranquil Water here sitting peacefully where other islands show the constant signs of the tide. Finally came the Tranquil Lagoon, so named for its seeming normalcy in comparison to the rest of the islands, where trainers would soon call home for those who wished to live away from the mainland. Ever stoking the Fire of the hearth, the villagers here set forth to live away from the craziness of the mainland, by whatever means necessary.

Each place was distinctly different, yet their mysteries all seem they could be connected in some way. Voyage has been granted to all trainers from the mainland, hoping to discover the true secret behind this strange land, but adventurers beware, Phantom Isle is not the only place of terror among the Archipelago. Please note that only direct traffic from island to island is approved at this time, as the conspiracy theorists firmly believe that at the center of this Archipelago, deep beneathe the sea, lies the most ancient evil ever to take seat in Fizzytopia, a statement that simply cannot be ignored.



Conflagrant Spire

Please reply in IndianRed

At the northeast of the Archipelago can be found the Conflagrant Spire, an active volcano that has formed into an incredibly tall and thin tower of a mountain. The spire itself finds itself to the far west side of the island, with the land below stretching and reaching out, as if attempting to grab out at the island far to the south. The nutrient rich soil hosts lush plantlife and a wide variety of fauna, leaving this what would be the most naturally beautiful of all the islands. That beauty hides a horrible secret, however, relics of times past that hint at terrible rituals that were once conducted here in the name of ancient deities. Those who have braved the island have yet to find anything resembling human life, yet these horrid sites remain clean, as though used only yesterday. It is unknown when the Spire last erupted, let alone when it will again, but a temple at its top gives hint that it must have been some time ago.

Sub Areas:

Thermal Cliffs:
What at first seems to be impassibly steep cliffs turns out to be carved paths spiraling along the mountainside in all directions, all of which look to have been made as if by hand and well maintained. Small lava spouts break out in various locations, and the resulting thermals make for excellent winds for airborne Pokemon large and small, while what spouts have cooled have been turned largely into dens used by those that would feast on their nests.
"I'm sorry, but we really don't have any Fire Stones right now."

Those words were the reason Curtis had made it out here today: If the Department Store wasn't going to give the Fire Stone his Vulpix, Annahime, needed, then he'd just have to find one of his own! And what better place to do so than in the newly discovered volcanic island! Completely oblivious to the sheer spookiness of absolutely everything to do with the islands, he had gotten on a ship to the Conflagrant Spire. All he saw was the opportunity to break Annahime out of the slump he was sure she was falling into.

Two of his other Pokemon had themselves evolved already and ever since then she had started to get all mopey and it had only gotten worse after that Gigantamax Gengar raid a while ago. Sure she did have a baby Alolan Vulpix named Jin to take care of for a while, but it wasn't long before he was bounding around too and playing with the others all on his own! But when she wasn't curled up around her kit, she just lazed around. She doesn't even try to push around the others to take the best spots anymore and she used to do that all the time! Well, they were smaller than her back then, but she gives up way too easily now. Even in the group training sessions, she just didn't have as much of that spark in her eyes as before. Well, it was time to make her feel special again!

Now here he was, hiking up the cliffs up the Conflagrant Spire in search of Fire-type Pokemon that also evolve with the use of a Fire Stone! Which well, wasn't a long list- but where there's powerful Fire Pokemon there's bound to also be Fire Stones right? Now... he'd just have to find them! Hood pulled on tight and his costume freshly washed before heading out for good luck, he had his Pokemon at his side and was ready to face anything!

Annahime meanwhile was at her usual perch: on her Trainer's shoulder. She stood at attention, just waiting for something to jump out at them. It was like this entire place was just made of bad juju- she could just feel it in her tails the moment they had sailed in on that boat. She had heard the rumors the other Humans and Pokemon were saying about this entire chain of islands! Even if her Trainer just thought they were being silly. Hopefully, very hopefully, her Trainer wasn't completely misguided in coming here looking for a Fire Stone.

Well, yes, she would like to evolve- but what was the point? Did her Trainer just want her to look like his costume so she would fit better in his collection of animals or what? She shook that thought out of her head. No! No! No! That was just what that terrifyingly huge Gengar had said getting to her again! Thinking back to battling that THING and especially falling to that attack called 'G-Max Terror' was something that still occasionally gave her nightmares. She was here to get stronger! Better! But a creeping doubt in her mind told her that they'd have to survive this place first... why, oh why, did it seem like Curtis wasn't taking this place seriously? Her focus temporarily renewed- she went back to keeping a keen eye on the surroundings.
 
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ChrisClark13-

Avarice. Extreme greed for wealth or material gain. That was your goal in coming here, to fulfill the avarice within your heart. Not for yourself, but for your plump Vulpix. A princess of vanity and gluttony. You cared not what the dangers were, or how eerie the place actually was. You had a singular goal in mind. Get a Fire Stone, and get out. It seemed to be a simple enough goal. This place was littered with thermals and lava spouts. It would be a great shame, after all, if a place so inclined to the element of fire wouldn't have the evolutionary stone associated with it.

Of course, while you were too obsessed with your goal, your Vulpix had other ideas. She could tell there was something off with this place. Something that didn't sit just right within the natural order. She recalled her battle with the Gigantamax Gengar at Loch Bygone. The way she was swallowed whole by G-Max Terror left a chill down her spine. This place was giving off those same vibes. Even if it was just a place for fire type Pokemon to live, there was a certain unnatural element to it.

But no matter. You pushed your way forwards, searching every nook, crack, and cranny for your fiery prize. But alas, there was nothing. Nothing to be found. It was beginning to look like a wasted effort. What was the point of coming here if there wasn't anything interesting to be found? The strange thing though, was that you found nothing. Empty dens, cloudless skies, and nothing within sight. All there was was the beating sun, baring into the cliffside, making everything feel like you were in a boiler.

That was until you heard something on the wind. A noise? A cry? A sign that there was, in fact, life here? You couldn't tell, but from the direction, you could feel a large warmth. Turning around, you see a lava spout pierce the horizon. Sparks flew through the air as the molten rock spit and spewed everywhere. And if there was molten rock, then surely there must be rocks that absorb that fiery essence?

As you climbed the cliffside, there was something else you noticed. There was a cavern giving off cooler air. It went deep into the cliffside, and you couldn't see anything besides a dim glow towards the back. It was a small source of light, and it looked like it might be moving?

There were two choices in front of you, and it was obvious enough that both held equal opportunities to the prize you seek. The real question was, what choice to go for? Annahime seemed indifferent to the entire situation. She wanted you and your sorry ass to leave this place. But, there was something gnawing at you. You couldn't go now. So the question was, which way to go?

What do you do?
 
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ChrisClark13-

Avarice. Extreme greed for wealth or material gain. That was your goal in coming here, to fulfill the avarice within your heart. Not for yourself, but for your plump Vulpix. A princess of vanity and gluttony. You cared not what the dangers were, or how eerie the place actually was. You had a singular goal in mind. Get a Fire Stone, and get out. It seemed to be a simple enough goal. This place was littered with thermals and lava spouts. It would be a great shame, after all, if a place so inclined to the element of fire wouldn't have the evolutionary stone associated with it.

Of course, while you were too obsessed with your goal, your Vulpix had other ideas. She could tell there was something off with this place. Something that didn't sit just right within the natural order. She recalled her battle with the Gigantamax Gengar at Loch Bygone. The way she was swallowed whole by G-Max Terror left a chill down her spine. This place was giving off those same vibes. Even if it was just a place for fire type Pokemon to live, there was a certain unnatural element to it.

But no matter. You pushed your way forwards, searching every nook, crack, and cranny for your fiery prize. But alas, there was nothing. Nothing to be found. It was beginning to look like a wasted effort. What was the point of coming here if there wasn't anything interesting to be found? The strange thing though, was that you found nothing. Empty dens, cloudless skies, and nothing within sight. All there was was the beating sun, baring into the cliffside, making everything feel like you were in a boiler.

That was until you heard something on the wind. A noise? A cry? A sign that there was, in fact, life here? You couldn't tell, but from the direction, you could feel a large warmth. Turning around, you see a lava spout pierce the horizon. Sparks flew through the air as the molten rock spit and spewed everywhere. And if there was molten rock, then surely there must be rocks that absorb that fiery essence?

As you climbed the cliffside, there was something else you noticed. There was a cavern giving off cooler air. It went deep into the cliffside, and you couldn't see anything besides a dim glow towards the back. It was a small source of light, and it looked like it might be moving?

There were two choices in front of you, and it was obvious enough that both held equal opportunities to the prize you seek. The real question was, what choice to go for? Annahime seemed indifferent to the entire situation. She wanted you and your sorry ass to leave this place. But, there was something gnawing at you. You couldn't go now. So the question was, which way to go?

What do you do?
Curtis took a drink from one of the plastic water bottles he had brought along (note to self: get a Water-type Pokemon, probably one of those otter-like ones or something) as he considered his next move. So, the dens were strangely empty probably just meant that the Pokemon who lived there were out and about for the day?

Though waiting for them all to get back would just take too long- and it's questionable if finding powerful Fire-types would help anyways. Only a small fraction of species of Pokemon evolved via evolution stones after all and what if he didn't find one of the ones that did via Fire Stone? That being Growlithe and Vulpix and Eevee and... some kind of monkey right? Well, he was in the wrong place to find monkeys on this island that's for sure. That'd be in the jungle and he'd have to hike all way the back down with nothing to show for it! (Never mind that the place was seemingly beckoning him forwards for some spooky reason.)

So that just left going further in! But to where though?

The lava spout in the distance signaled that there was certainly something up there worth checking out. Maybe if there were Fire Stones up there, then they'd surely just be floating along the lava or getting chucked out of the spouts. Fire Stones didn't melt, right?

Though then, there was also the cave in front of him with something glowing way, way in the back. Maybe a Pokemon, maybe some lava or something? Looking under the earth for a Fire Stone might just be a smarter idea in general since those are usually mined up, right? But he didn't have any digging tools now did he? Though if he could find and catch a tunneling Pokemon, that problem would be instantly solved!

Besides, there was one big, big problem with going up to the top. If he'd went up there he'd certainly end up sweating all the way through his fursuit! He did only have so many water bottles he could carry with him for this trip after all.

So into the cooler, but certainly spookier, cave it was! He'd just have to do something to not get lost. Oh, and to light up the place. Duh. In fact, he can get that taken care of right now!

"Annahime," he barked, "get us up some Will-O-Wisps so we can see in that cave."

Now while she took care of that, all he'd have to do is find a nice hard rock or two to leave a scratch on the wall he could follow back out! As he bent down to pick up rocks, he noticed that Annahime was clawing into the furred cloth on his shoulders way harder than usual. In fact, she hadn't even gotten started on the Will-O-Wisp lights yet! He raised up his right hand and gave her a pat on the head, making her flinch slightly oddly enough. Had she been distracted by something? He followed the oddly still gaze from her too-wide eyes and saw that she was staring right down into the depths of the cave-like the darkness itself was about to come out and bite her or something.

"It's alright, it's alright," he said as he rubbed her head and stood back up straight. He looked at her and pulled her head so she was looking at him, "We've got type coverage for most anything we're gonna encounter in there. You've got Energy Ball so that covers Rock and Ground types, your biggest weakness aside from Water-types and there's not gonna be any of those here, and then your fire will get through any Steel types and well, for Fire types, we can just have Finnegan and you blast through those."

Annahime looks back at the cave then back to him. No no no! He wasn't getting it!

Curtis hmms. Was she worried about something else? "Dark types?" he asks. She shakes her head. "What else would be in there?"

She rolls her entire head with a huff and conjures up a Shadow Ball and motions at it with her snout.

"Ooooh, Ghost types?"

She slowly nods her head. Now the idiot was getting it.

"Well can't you just use that to blast them to bits?"

She gives him a flat look and droops her ears in frustration, also dropping concentration on the Shadow Ball- letting it vanish harmlessly. No, he wasn't getting it.

He didn't get it, she has an effective move against them- why would she be afraid of them? But alright then... "We also have Finnegan for that? His Snarl'll clear 'em out too," he offers.

She lets out an annoyed huff and looks back out at the cave. Well, she supposes that would be enough backup for this spooky cave- and it does sound like her idiot Trainer does have a plan and said plans do usually work out. Though it doesn't help if he doesn't actually get the other fox out of his Pokeball! To help with that, she looks down to the pockets in which he keeps his filled Pokeballs and grabs at the fabric with a Psychic, tugging it towards herself.

"You want me to get him out now?" Curtis half-whines.

She nods vigorously. YES. YES YOU IDIOT, NOW!

The trainer follows along with his pushy Vulpix's demands and pulls out the Pokeball containing Finnegan, a Thievul. He gives it a lazy toss and says, "Come on out Finnegan!" as if he's reciting a line.

After Finnegan's done materializing and the Pokeball flies back into his hand, he starts giving orders to the brown-and-black fox, "Alright then, Annahime's feeling pretty scared of the dark right now so it'll be your job to be on- hey, hey not you too!"

Finnegan, instead of sitting there to listen to orders, walked up to his Trainer and jumped up on his leg so he can dig and grab at the pockets containing the rest of his team.

Curtis has to shove the disobedient fox away, who gives out a disappointed whine. "No, I didn't bring your kid along. I dropped him off at Daycare while we're out here. Remember?"

The Theivul simply hops back up to keep going through his Trainer's pockets. While it was disappointed that the kids hadn't been brought along, he still wanted his friend to come on out! Resisting the attempts to push him away, the fox successfully manages to snatch the Pokeball containing his best friend- a Delcatty named Toby and runs off a short distance with it.

"Hey no! Bad! Get back here with that!" Curtis shouts out as he tries to grab at the fleeing fox.

In response, Finnegan simply drops the Pokeball to the ground and gives the button on it a smack. The Pokeball dutifully opens up, letting his friend free. Finnegan's tail wags as he bows down. As soon as his friend is finished materializing, he pounces on them and starts tussling with them.

Curtis groans as he runs over to grab Toby's Pokeball before it has a chance to roll off the cliff. After putting that away, he reaches out and grabs both the Thievul and the Delcatty by their scruffs. "You can play later," he says frustratedly. He speaks in a serious tone, trying to get this Pokemon to listen to him. "Right now, it's serious time. Alright? Alright. We've got some exploring to do and if you guys get yourselves lost- you might just be stuck out here forever. Foreevvveerrrrr." After giving that a moment to sink in, he lets them go.

"Sit," he says with a snap of his fingers and they both do actually sit down. Okay, they do seem to be paying attention now.

Backing up, he holds up a finger and points at the cave. "We, are going to explore that cave. Annahime here," he points to her briefly, "will be providing light with her Will-O-Wisps." he then points to the other fox and the cat in turn, "Finnegan and Toby, your job will be to look out for any threats. Finnegan, be ready to blast any Pokemon that jumps out at us with a Snarl. Toby, you will be looking for said threats using your Foresight move. If you see anything, make sure you let Finnegan know. Ya got that you two?" The two Pokemon give an unsteady nod. "Don't get too far from me now either."

"Alright then! Let's get this show on the road!" Curtis shouts out as he makes his way to the mouth of the cave. He motions with his hand towards the darkness. "Annahime, we're all ready now- so light up that cave!"

Annahime stretches for a moment before waving her tails around and conjuring up several bright blue balls of fire which she has float at positions around the group to their sides and up above their heads. She keeps them closeby as her Trainer starts walking in.

Curtis looks back for a moment and beckons his other two Pokemon forward, "Alright, don't forget. Snarl and Foresight- I don't want anything sneaking up on us!"

And so, the Trainer and his three Pokemon made his way into the cave where certainly nothing bad was about to happen to them...
 
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Missingno. Master - Taking some photos as well as a voice recording, you set to work at discovering the true meaning of these letters carved into the altar you've located. A few different ideas cross you mind as you ponder, yet none pop out enough to consider them over the others. Turning your attention away from the altar for just a moment, you spot Hermoine sniffing about the area, attempting to come to the truth of this mystery in her own manner. Producing a notebook as well as ink bottles from your backpack, you set them down for the Weedle, allowing the practiced scribe to begin recording her own findings about the area.

After just a moment the Weedle enthusiastically points towards the notebook to get your attention, the fairly neat writing telling the story of her various sniffings. The scent here is familiar to her, but yet unknown, and permeates the entirety of the altar. Three paths away from the altar have the same scent, each equally strong and very much fresh. The first points towards the Cracked Canyon further through the rainforest, with just a bit of flora along the path from what you can tell. The second leads towards the Spire itself, a relatively cleared path similar to the one that brought you here. The final path, if your directions are correct, should head towards the Ashen Coast, but is ridden with all manner of lush shrubbery of the forest.

With each path's scent being so strong, whoever - or whatever - was last here can't have gotten far. The question now is whether to follow one of these paths or to further investigate the altar and discover the meaning of the letters carved therein.


SlashKub - The Tranquil Lagoon, a peaceful village with crystal clear waters and shimmering white sands ill fitting the standard faire of the other islands of the Archipelago. Had you not had to travel passed the other islands just to get here, the very sights alone would be enough to make this place out to be a true gem hidden among the sea. And yet, things here seemed odd, as the villagers walked about with ear to ear smiles on their faces in the peaceful calm of the island. The walkways of the wooden planks barely sinking into the lagoon even as carts filled to the brim with fish are transported across them, and the dwellings old but well kept told a tale of a town lost to the ages. An odd thought given how recently established you know the area to be.

Shaking off the oddities, you look about for some form of fun, before flagging down a passing settler to ask about where to find a good place for Pokemon battles. The man, a fisherman whose upper body looked as though he could snap one of these wooden walkways in two, and lower body matched in such a way that you might think the planet rotating might just be as a result of him taking a morning stroll, stopped suddenly at your waving, sticking a fishing spear into the wood with a firm grasp.

"Trainer battles?" The man smiled, the idea of a battle seeming to confuse him for a moment, "Oh, you mean for training? Most people take that kind of thing out to the desert." Pausing for a moment he continues, "I suppose there's sometimes some polite arguments over resources out at the reef as well, though they rarely escalate that far."

Barely bothering to even acknowledge your existence, as though reciting the words from a script, the man finishes his words before walking away toward the Vibrant Reef. It might be worth following him, but just as he leaves, the savory smells of local cuisine tingles your nose, salty yet sweet, with a slight bit of spice to it. The delicious scent seems to be wafting from further into the Village, perhaps it's worth looking into as well.
 
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Missingno. Master - Taking some photos as well as a voice recording, you set to work at discovering the true meaning of these letters carved into the altar you've located. A few different ideas cross you mind as you ponder, yet none pop out enough to consider them over the others. Turning your attention away from the altar for just a moment, you spot Hermoine sniffing about the area, attempting to come to the truth of this mystery in her own manner. Producing a notebook as well as ink bottles from your backpack, you set them down for the Weedle, allowing the practiced scribe to begin recording her own findings about the area.

After just a moment the Weedle enthusiastically points towards the notebook to get your attention, the fairly neat writing telling the story of her various sniffings. The scent here is familiar to her, but yet unknown, and permeates the entirety of the altar. Three paths away from the altar have the same scent, each equally strong and very much fresh. The first points towards the Cracked Canyon further through the rainforest, with just a bit of flora along the path from what you can tell. The second leads towards the Spire itself, a relatively cleared path similar to the one that brought you here. The final path, if your directions are correct, should head towards the Ashen Coast, but is ridden with all manner of lush shrubbery of the forest.

With each path's scent being so strong, whoever - or whatever - was last here can't have gotten far. The question now is whether to follow one of these paths or to further investigate the altar and discover the meaning of the letters carved therein.
After leaving Hermione with the notebook and ink bottle, Eddie was given results just about immediately. Hermione jotted down her olfactory findings in no time, and managing it in neat, legible writing, no less. "Hm," Eddie murmured, looking over what Hermione had taken down. "Familiar to you, yet you can't quite identify it... So something you've definitely smelled before, and from the stories Keith tells me, I have a good feeling," he smiled. "And three paths leading away, with the same scent, all very much fresh..." The young cryptopolologist looked up from the notebook to look at the actual paths in question. One went towards the Cracked Canyon, with a mild amount of plant life in their way. The next led towards the Spire, and the path was just as clear as the one that had taken them this far. The final path seemed to head for the Ashen Coast, but was chock full of plant life. "Hm... I would say the hardest path to traverse would be our best bet for uncovering the biggest of secrets," decided Eddie, adjusting his glasses as he looked down the shrubbery-riddled path leading towards the Ashen Coast. "The question is, how to traverse it? I suppose we could get Homer's help to cut through some of-"

Nope, came a telepathic voice cutting Eddie's words short. Eddie gave a small sigh- that had come, unmistakably, from the Poké Ball on his belt containing the powerful, albeit fat and gluttonous, Alakazam. Homer was formidable, but also quite lazy.

"Weedle," grumbled Hermione- her latest teammate's disrespect never sat that well with her. She gave it a few seconds of thought, then spoke up a bit louder. "Weedle? Weedle Weedle Weedle!" she stated.

At this, the ball on Eddie's belt burst open, and a fat Alakazam emerged, fork and knife in hand as he looked down at Hermione. ...Fine, he relented.

"Ah, Homer, good," smiled Eddie. "We'll need the help of your Psycho Cut move to navigate this dense foliage," he said, gesturing to the overgrown path they were to traverse. "And time is of the essense- I feel we may well be on the verge of a major cryptopokological breakthrough!"

Uh huh, Homer responded, sounding bored. He turned to Hermione. And then I get the Chocolate Bomb shrapnel, right? he asked. Eddie facepalmed at this as Hermione nodded curtly- of course Hermione bribed him with food. Why didn't he think of that? Alright, fine. Let's get moving, Homer said telepathically.

"Weedle!" stated Hermione, crawling up Eddie and onto his outstretched hand. At this point, Eddie started walking, allowing Hermione to dictate which way they went. Homer brought up the rear, the Alakazam ready to hack away at any excessive foliage with Psycho Cut.
 
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SlashKub - The Tranquil Lagoon, a peaceful village with crystal clear waters and shimmering white sands ill fitting the standard faire of the other islands of the Archipelago. Had you not had to travel passed the other islands just to get here, the very sights alone would be enough to make this place out to be a true gem hidden among the sea. And yet, things here seemed odd, as the villagers walked about with ear to ear smiles on their faces in the peaceful calm of the island. The walkways of the wooden planks barely sinking into the lagoon even as carts filled to the brim with fish are transported across them, and the dwellings old but well kept told a tale of a town lost to the ages. An odd thought given how recently established you know the area to be.

Shaking off the oddities, you look about for some form of fun, before flagging down a passing settler to ask about where to find a good place for Pokemon battles. The man, a fisherman whose upper body looked as though he could snap one of these wooden walkways in two, and lower body matched in such a way that you might think the planet rotating might just be as a result of him taking a morning stroll, stopped suddenly at your waving, sticking a fishing spear into the wood with a firm grasp.

"Trainer battles?" The man smiled, the idea of a battle seeming to confuse him for a moment, "Oh, you mean for training? Most people take that kind of thing out to the desert." Pausing for a moment he continues, "I suppose there's sometimes some polite arguments over resources out at the reef as well, though they rarely escalate that far."

Barely bothering to even acknowledge your existence, as though reciting the words from a script, the man finishes his words before walking away toward the Vibrant Reef. It might be worth following him, but just as he leaves, the savory smells of local cuisine tingles your nose, salty yet sweet, with a slight bit of spice to it. The delicious scent seems to be wafting from further into the Village, perhaps it's worth looking into as well.
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Slash blinked in confusion. Conflict resolution... without Pokemon battles? That was... that's not how the world is supposed to work. It was unsettling to think of. And the guy's unbroken smile while he said something so weird so casually, that was even stranger. Did he not understand how outlandish his statement was? Apparently not, as the bulky man proceeded to walk away in short order, not even giving time for the words to settle.

While confused on what path to follow, Slash became aware of a very nice scent that began wafting through the air, or maybe it had been there all along and he was just catching a whiff of it. It smelled very nice, though he couldn't quite place what it was. It might be something local, something completely foreign to him. The reef, the desert, food. All seemed like good options, but at the same time, not of them felt right.

Maybe coming to this archipelago was a mistake. There was just something here he couldn't shake, it felt like everything was just half a step out of tune. It was just close enough at the surface, but the longer he was here, the more he could feel just how discordant it was. Maybe he should just leave-

The second it crossed his mind, Slash felt a shiver in the back of his head. Some kind of instinct, maybe, but he had this strong feeling that, should be try to take a boat off this island, he wouldn't be able to. Not at this time. An odd instinct, to be sure, but he felt he could trust it. It felt as though maybe some... thing? one? some force? he wasn't sure, wanted him to stay. Maybe it was even just a part of himself. He would have to keep an eye out-

"Po! Li po!" Caprina shouted and wriggled in his arms and gave him a light but sharp slap on the cheek. He realised he'd been just standing there for a few minutes, pensive, ignoring everything else.

"Sorry, girl, you know how I get sometimes," he gave a small chuckle and rubbed her head. Slash needed to have a battle, that would serve best to clear his head at a time like this. Nothing gave a Trainer perspective like a Pokemon battle. "I think we should head to the desert, girl. This town is getting unsettling. We might even find you a nice oasis."

"Popo!" she squealed happily. It was decided. Slash started his trek towards the desert, Caprina in his arms.
 
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Unreal Archipelago: Zone of Mysteries


Many know of Phantom Isle, the haunted theme park that has terrified all those who entered. But after years of adventuring across the island, some trainers dared to go further out to sea from the mainland. Here they quickly found a number of other land masses, each just beyond the horizon from the next, forming a perfect circle with Phantom Isle at its base, though some have claimed the islands take the true form of the darkest witchcraft itself, Phantom Isle being the quintessential element of Spirit in this reverse pentagram. The first to be discovered was deemed the Defiled Oasis, possibly once a place of fae magic and abundant beauty, destroyed by companies to hide their power plant meant to fuel Phantom Isle's theme park with electricity, its existence hidden from the rest of the world after the failure of the park. Those that believe the theory of witchcraft have stated that this place's destroyed terrain has all but devastated what once was a place of only the purest Air quality. Next came the Conflagrant Spire, a beautiful and lush rainforest island with its own towering volcano, dotted with relics of a civilization past. While some say the great fire of the island's volcano disproves the theory of witchcraft, others have pointed out that the altars point to sacrifices to the Earth itself, further supporting the horrid story. Then came the Quiescent Glacier, less a land mass than a strange and massive chunk of ice, having made its way here some time ago but refusing to go even an inch further. The stillness of the ice seems to have filled the missing elemental slot on its own, the tranquil Water here sitting peacefully where other islands show the constant signs of the tide. Finally came the Tranquil Lagoon, so named for its seeming normalcy in comparison to the rest of the islands, where trainers would soon call home for those who wished to live away from the mainland. Ever stoking the Fire of the hearth, the villagers here set forth to live away from the craziness of the mainland, by whatever means necessary.

Each place was distinctly different, yet their mysteries all seem they could be connected in some way. Voyage has been granted to all trainers from the mainland, hoping to discover the true secret behind this strange land, but adventurers beware, Phantom Isle is not the only place of terror among the Archipelago. Please note that only direct traffic from island to island is approved at this time, as the conspiracy theorists firmly believe that at the center of this Archipelago, deep beneath the sea, lies the most ancient evil ever to take seat in Fizzytopia, a statement that simply cannot be ignored.




Phantom Isle
Please reply in SlateGray


Sitting at the far south of the Unreal Archipelago, Phantom Isle was once a large theme park with an accompanying hotel, the park incorporating a slew of rides, entertainment venues, and showcases, terrible events in the past caused the shutdown of the park for some time. With years now having passed, nobody can say for certain what the singular moment was that caused this downward spiral of the park's luck, but the final straw in its closure can be directly linked to the event wherein the Ghost Train ride caught fire, killing dozens of adults, children, and trainers. In its heyday the park held Contests, saw frequent friendly battles, and even allowed children to hire Pokemon for the day to keep them company or to battle with in special kiddie events. The hotel towering over the south side of the island was added only recently before the park had been shut down, meant to house those that wished to stay for more than a single day with their families and enjoy all of the attractions they could. Now, the park lingers with supernatural activity, an odd purple haze washing over the island causing it to be shrouded in a perpetual darkness as natural light no longer filters through. While it is known that the park once had a large variety of places to see, enough to accommodate large crowds for days on end, some locations seem to have disappeared forever, as though absorbed into the fog that now covers the Isle.


The Funhouse: The name speaks for itself, though the fun you'll have might not be the sort of fun you are acquainted with. A strange entity exists in the building which seems to emanate evil from the walls and floors, causing even the most nimble of trainers to have trouble keeping their balance in the various rooms. The Funhouse even contains a Hall of Mirrors, an endless maze that may trap you for all time if you don't keep your wits about you.
As mentioned in DMs Continuing my previous zone adventure, here. Noting that it has been so long since I last replied that I have forgotten what my two pokemon who were previously used in this story had access to at the time so Tweaking the story ever so slightly to have my Arcanine as its current level ( 64 ) and Tynamo now fully evolved into Eelektross and current level ( 54 ) with my character being older. SO long as this is okay and acceptable.



The ticking in Drake's mind as the spirit counted down, reminded him of a place he visited long ago. Drake shook his head and cleared his thoughts, thinking only of the directions the spirit gave.
"Right around the bend, second right, first left, first right, first right, third left. "
Drake started to run as the countdown continued, Wolfe having no problem following behind him.

"Right around the bend, second right, first left, first right, first right, third left. "
Drake turned right around the bend, chanting the same line over and over in his head.
The trainer and pokemon ran to the second right, then the first left.

"Right around the bend, second right, first left, first right, first right, third left. "
The two turned on the first right and another first right.

"Right around the bend, second right, first left, first right, first right, third left. "
Drake and Wolfe turned again on the third left, Both skidding to a stop on the dead-end the spirit spoke of. The spirit said to wait for a few seconds, because this was a fake dead end of sorts. Drake supposed.
The run had left made them huff a little, as both did not want to stay here forever, but both the man and his starter pokemon were... somewhat ready for what might lay ahead.
A ticking in Drakes's head continued over and over.

Tick... Tick... Tick...
"Now what?"
Drake spoke out-loud and with his mind, allowing him to, what he thought, would hide his thoughts from both.... creatures in this hallway.
 
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Raising this seven-year-old adventure from the dead :O

Parts 1, 2 and 3 for the morbidly curious.


Marion Ette said:
Members-Only Casino

Emp
- Emp is fully aware of the fact that this casino far outranked Jirachi's in terms of splendor and polish; however, it also outranked Jirachi's Casino when it came to the risks the Casino demanded of its patrons. Recalling the pups one by one with the mentality that such a posh place was not necessarily appropriate for a group of rambunctious young Eevee, the young man is interrupted as he watches a woman run out of "lifetime" right before his eyes. Seeing her horrified reaction amidst a sea of expressionless, apathetic faces, was more than enough to help Emp comprehend the gravity of the situation he finds himself in. Fortunately, the strange Solosis whose telepathic signature mimics the Reuniclus that Emp interacted with before his strange journey is quick to provide Emp with a pass to verify his membership to this sinister establishment, which at least prevents him from being forcibly kicked out right off the bat. Emp could not be certain if this was the exact same Pokemon that he had encountered before, or an offspring, but neither explanation seemed easily plausible. Either way, the Solosis seemed to recognize him somehow, and his friendly nature was enough to reassure Emp that the help he provides was at least genuine, even if his identity was questionable.

When the sharply-dressed Golurk makes its way over to the scruffy-looking trainer, it seems rather surprised that Emp is actually able to provide him with the appropriate card; giving him the once-over, it points to Emp's clothes and gives a rather disparaging look, but after scanning the card with his glowing yellow eyes, it seems satisfied enough, though Emp cannot help but notice the fact that the Golurk's focus remains on the muddy tracks that his footprints have left in the formerly pristine blood-red carpet, even while he asks the ghostly security guard for directions to some races he could potentially bet on. After giving the matter some thought, the Golurk points in the direction of a large, red door at the far end of the Casino, over which a sign advertises "Houndoom Races". The Golurk seems hesitant, however, and bows its head, though Emp does not seem quite clear on why the intimidating-looking Pokemon seemed reluctant to point Emp in that direction. It also draws Emp' attention to a blue door with little orange Magikarp painted all over it, which also has the words "MAGIKARP RACES" featured prominently in orange paint to match the little 'karp Pokemon. The Solosis seems focused on a pair of smartly-dressed young men nearby, who smoke their cigars nervously as they converse in hushed tones with one another. The Golurk nods toward the Solosis, as if to silently confirm something, though the motion is so slight that Emp only barely notices it. Emp cannot help but be intrigued by this conversation between the men, which is just loud enough for him to hear;

"Taco truck? You're... you're kidding me, right? Our entire pack, wiped out by a-"

"By a taco truck. Yes. I dunno who the Hell was drivin' that thing, but it broke right through the kennel and now we got 7 Houndoom in the hospital. Blood and tacos everywhere. It was a mess, man, a total-"

"Spare me the details, you idiot. We're losin' money to those b******s racin' MAGIKARP with every wasted second. We have to race SOMETHING or we'll be out ten grand, easy!"

"Yeah, but what? Where are we gonna find Pokemon to race?"

Solosis turns to Emp, though his expression, rather than insistant, is serene and nonjudgmental. It seems as if the little cell-like creature has no preference in terms of action, and indeed, Emp could choose to try and engage the men whose Houndoom are in the hospital, or simply make his way to the Magikarp races and ignore them altogether. Or, if neither race appeals to Emp, he could ask the Golurk for directions to a different form of gambling.

How will Emp react?
The Golurk’s searchlight-eyes scanned from the trainer’s shaggy hair down to his muddy sneakers, that'd tracked dirt all over the blood red carpeting. It shot a disapproving look before honing in on the member’s card which must have been passable. With a pang of relief Emp counted the footsteps as the spectral sentry continued its patrol, out of sight and mind for the time being... The young adult’s eyes then fixed across to a blue door advertising races for Magikarp. He couldn’t hide his smirk, ‘who would want to see a bunch of Magikarp flounder down a race track?’ From personal experience Magikarp weren’t the swiftest swimmers. Emp noticed two men shuffling nearby, suited up and whispering among the haze of cigar smoke. The boy strained his ears but the strings of conversation were drowned out by the slot machine cacophony. The Golurk and Solosis share a subtle exchange, Emp barely noticing as they conferred with one another. The trainer’s curiosity sharpened, tilting his head in efforts to listen in on the gentlemens’ conversation.

"Taco truck? You're... you're kidding me, right? Our entire pack, wiped out by a-"

"By a taco truck. Yes. I dunno who the Hell was drivin' that thing, but it broke right through the kennel and now we got 7 Houndoom in the hospital. Blood and tacos everywhere. It was a mess, man, a total-"

"Spare me the details, you idiot. We're losin' money to those b******s racin' MAGIKARP with every wasted second. We have to race SOMETHING or we'll be out ten grand, easy!"

"Yeah, but what? Where are we gonna find Pokemon to race?"

Emp’s brow furrowed in confusion - surely he’d misheard. The mental image of a taco truck careering into the Houndoom kennels and mowing the entire pack tugged at the trainer’s heartstrings, the sport one he detested as-is. The talk of Magikarp races on the other hand, he could almost feel the Rocket Ball wriggling against his belt – a fully grown koi primed for competition lay dormant within. Was this fate or was something more sinister in store for the lost trainer? Solosis quickly revolved his gooey essense with a look of shared opportunity, although he didn’t seem too pushy about the idea. The trainer had reached a crossroads; with the offer too good to pass up he gingerly approached.

“I have a Pokémon to race,” Emp interrupted, prizing the black-red ball from his jean pocket and tossing it in one hand with feigned composure, “Guppy is a shiny Magikarp, well trained, at least level fifty. I’m sure he’d fetch some high odds if he entered, but I’d want a nice cut of the earnings...” Emp’s cheeks felt numb as he strained to hold a confident grin, clenching his fists to keep his hands shaking. He could only hope that the shifty characters wouldn’t see straight through his poker face and would allow his Magikarp to compete.

FB
 
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Phantom Isle
Please reply in SlateGray
The Lobby: Upon entering the hotel's main doors, you reach a marble-floored lobby with a check-in desk and huge chandeliers that flicker ominously. Behind the desk lies most of the keys to the various hotels rooms, but an unseen power prevents you from taking more than one at a time. Attached is a gift shop selling theme park souvenirs, though you might find more than a keyring or two floating about there. A lone elevator sits at one end of the lobby, leading up to the rest of the rooms or down to the storeroom and casino.
"You know Scylla, I've never been one to be fond of amusement parks. So much light and noise, and most of all people! I'm fond of...one on one experiences, but crowds are simply too many ears and ears. But this place is positively invigorating! What an absolutely intoxicating miasma covers this place! This place, truly, reeks of death!" the mysterious woman, returning to the land of Fizzytopia again, seemed positively effervescent exploring the ruins of Phantom Isle. Scylla, floating behind her, also explored the various stalls and ruined buildings with curiousity, hoping to find something she could swipe and hide away. Hanging off of the woman's purse were two more Pokeballs, holding both Daphne, her Phantump, and Boreas, her Snom, in case she needed either of them, but for right now, she was content to explore and adventure with her darling Inkay. She had surely heard the rumors and read the newspaper articles about the disasters that took place here, but those didn't scare her. In fact, it excited her. It had been a long, long time since she had been able to find a place that truly excited her. Sure, there were many places that claimed they were haunted, but it was rare to find a place that truly had spirits that had not been laid to rest, and even the ones that did often had little precious strength. Truly, she was over the occasional poltergeist who might push something off a shelf or a table. If she wanted that, she could just get a cat.

"My own mortal soul might be in danger here! How exhilarating!" Scylla blinked a bit before continuing on. Her trainer occasionally had these sorts of mania, as if the idea of death were somehow very welcome. Scylla would rather avoid those possibilities when exploring, but she had little choice but to follow her trainer, lest she truly die. Taking a moment to rest, the woman sat down and pulled a small wine bottle out of her purse, taking a brief moment to pry the loose cork out before taking a drink straight from the bottle, the red wine staining her lips and teeth. "Oh who cares about decorum! There's frights, perils, and certain death to find! Oh where should we go Scylla? Any preferences?" Scylla pondered a bit, trying to remember anything, before pointing to the large structure that was probably the hotel. A building that big certain had things to steal, and probably was the most important place on the island. The woman giggled slightly and nodded. The hotel was a mere side attraction on the island, a haunted house compared to the real attraction, the Ghost Train. But she herself felt there was a good chance that she was going to give herself plenty of time to explore the Phantom Isle. It's not like she had obligations or some such nonsense. No shops to check or raids to participate in. None of that could compare to the sheer thrill of playing on the border between life and death.

"Come, Scylla! To the hotel!"
 
Fizzy Bubbles Resident Bird Keeper
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Raising this seven-year-old adventure from the dead :O

Parts 1, 2 and 3 for the morbidly curious.



The Golurk’s searchlight-eyes scanned from the trainer’s shaggy hair down to his muddy sneakers, that'd tracked dirt all over the blood red carpeting. It shot a disapproving look before honing in on the member’s card which must have been passable. With a pang of relief Emp counted the footsteps as the spectral sentry continued its patrol, out of sight and mind for the time being... The young adult’s eyes then fixed across to a blue door advertising races for Magikarp. He couldn’t hide his smirk, ‘who would want to see a bunch of Magikarp flounder down a race track?’ From personal experience Magikarp weren’t the swiftest swimmers. Emp noticed two men shuffling nearby, suited up and whispering among the haze of cigar smoke. The boy strained his ears but the strings of conversation were drowned out by the slot machine cacophony. The Golurk and Solosis share a subtle exchange, Emp barely noticing as they conferred with one another. The trainer’s curiosity sharpened, tilting his head in efforts to listen in on the gentlemens’ conversation.

"Taco truck? You're... you're kidding me, right? Our entire pack, wiped out by a-"

"By a taco truck. Yes. I dunno who the Hell was drivin' that thing, but it broke right through the kennel and now we got 7 Houndoom in the hospital. Blood and tacos everywhere. It was a mess, man, a total-"

"Spare me the details, you idiot. We're losin' money to those b******s racin' MAGIKARP with every wasted second. We have to race SOMETHING or we'll be out ten grand, easy!"

"Yeah, but what? Where are we gonna find Pokemon to race?"

Emp’s brow furrowed in confusion - surely he’d misheard. The mental image of a taco truck careering into the Houndoom kennels and mowing the entire pack tugged at the trainer’s heartstrings, the sport one he detested as-is. The talk of Magikarp races on the other hand, he could almost feel the Rocket Ball wriggling against his belt – a fully grown koi primed for competition lay dormant within. Was this fate or was something more sinister in store for the lost trainer? Solosis quickly revolved his gooey essense with a look of shared opportunity, although he didn’t seem too pushy about the idea. The trainer had reached a crossroads; with the offer too good to pass up he gingerly approached.

“I have a Pokémon to race,” Emp interrupted, prizing the black-red ball from his jean pocket and tossing it in one hand with feigned composure, “Guppy is a shiny Magikarp, well trained, at least level fifty. I’m sure he’d fetch some high odds if he entered, but I’d want a nice cut of the earnings...” Emp’s cheeks felt numb as he strained to hold a confident grin, clenching his fists to keep his hands shaking. He could only hope that the shifty characters wouldn’t see straight through his poker face and would allow his Magikarp to compete.

FB
Time to blow off the cobwebs and get back into the swing of updating - I've only agreed to pick up Emp's reincarnated adventure to gets things wrapped up/moved on for him at this stage but watch this space as I may have more capacity in the future

Emp
Standing before the men with Rocket Ball in hand and a struggle to keep your composure, you offer the services of your Magikarp, Guppy. It was no use, though, this wasn't the kind of race you would typically find a Magikarp entering and your request is met with a harsh scoff and a rolled eye.

"Ya think that small fry stands a chance in a real race? Forget about it..."

The man closest to you and the smaller of the two cuts you off before he even seems to really listen to you and your request, turning to point at the door to the Magikarp Race. Alongside him, other man barely even pays attention to your presence as his eyes scan around the room, shifting from one side to the other as if looking for somebody. At these words, the peaceable Solosis you find yourself in the company of has a swift change in demeanour and his eyes begin to pulsate with the faint blue illumination of Confuse Ray, directing the strange light directly at your detractor.

"Huh? What was that you said? You're offering up your shiny Magikarp to race with us? I don't see why not!"

Following the Solosis' successful negotiations, the taller of the two brings his attention back to the conversation he hadn't particularly been listening to and nods in agreement with his companion. It was settled, Solosis had sealed you and Guppy a spot in the race. He wasn't done there, though, floating between the two men and cooing wistfully to offer his assistance in the race as well. With him volunteering, there would only be five spots to fill and they seemed happy with this.

"We're making jack all right now, we may as well. We've both got a Pokémon each too so if we enter ourselves we're just three short - how's about you go and ask those guys over there if any of them fancy joining us?" The taller man appeared more present now and almost excited to get things up and running. With a subtle grin, he points across to a booth of people lounging around; they're clearly some of the casino's higher rollers and each of them appears to be positively dripping in jewels.

You scan the group he is pointing to and spot a number of different characters: a short, jolly looking man with a top hat and a bushy moustache who seemed quite happy to just people watch; a pair of beautiful women who appear to be locked in some sort of private joke, giggling amongst themselves every now and again; a couple of business men in tight-fitted pinstripe suits, each drinking from a large tumbler and counting their chips greedily and what at a first glance appears to be a tall woman that you come to notice is in fact a drag artiste, waist cinched and hair styled high with a cigarette holder dangling from one hand bedecked with numerous rings. Around their feet, their Pokémon interact similarly, their coats and feathers glinting in the same way that Guppy's scales do.

What will you do?
 
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Time to blow off the cobwebs and get back into the swing of updating - I've only agreed to pick up Emp's reincarnated adventure to gets things wrapped up/moved on for him at this stage but watch this space as I may have more capacity in the future

Emp
Standing before the men with Rocket Ball in hand and a struggle to keep your composure, you offer the services of your Magikarp, Guppy. It was no use, though, this wasn't the kind of race you would typically find a Magikarp entering and your request is met with a harsh scoff and a rolled eye.

"Ya think that small fry stands a chance in a real race? Forget about it..."

The man closest to you and the smaller of the two cuts you off before he even seems to really listen to you and your request, turning to point at the door to the Magikarp Race. Alongside him, other man barely even pays attention to your presence as his eyes scan around the room, shifting from one side to the other as if looking for somebody. At these words, the peaceable Solosis you find yourself in the company of has a swift change in demeanour and his eyes begin to pulsate with the faint blue illumination of Confuse Ray, directing the strange light directly at your detractor.

"Huh? What was that you said? You're offering up your shiny Magikarp to race with us? I don't see why not!"

Following the Solosis' successful negotiations, the taller of the two brings his attention back to the conversation he hadn't particularly been listening to and nods in agreement with his companion. It was settled, Solosis had sealed you and Guppy a spot in the race. He wasn't done there, though, floating between the two men and cooing wistfully to offer his assistance in the race as well. With him volunteering, there would only be five spots to fill and they seemed happy with this.

"We're making jack all right now, we may as well. We've both got a Pokémon each too so if we enter ourselves we're just three short - how's about you go and ask those guys over there if any of them fancy joining us?" The taller man appeared more present now and almost excited to get things up and running. With a subtle grin, he points across to a booth of people lounging around; they're clearly some of the casino's higher rollers and each of them appears to be positively dripping in jewels.

You scan the group he is pointing to and spot a number of different characters: a short, jolly looking man with a top hat and a bushy moustache who seemed quite happy to just people watch; a pair of beautiful women who appear to be locked in some sort of private joke, giggling amongst themselves every now and again; a couple of business men in tight-fitted pinstripe suits, each drinking from a large tumbler and counting their chips greedily and what at a first glance appears to be a tall woman that you come to notice is in fact a drag artiste, waist cinched and hair styled high with a cigarette holder dangling from one hand bedecked with numerous rings. Around their feet, their Pokémon interact similarly, their coats and feathers glinting in the same way that Guppy's scales do.

What will you do?
Emp’s elevator pitch would fail to get him as far as the first floor, the aristocrats turning their nose up as his proposal without so much as a second thought. The drifter felt his cheeks flush a shade of pink, making a beeline for the doors through to the Magikarp races – an effort to save face, more than anything. Just as he was clear of the cigar fog, the two gentlemen made a surprise heel turn; the cerebral cell had them spellbound, and with three more contenders the race would be off in no time!

Before they had a chance to change their minds (or unchange, more like) the trainer scoured the crowd of punters in search of extra bodies. One of the two gentlemen gave him a prod in the right direction, a booth crowded with a cast of the casino’s highest rollers. They were decked up to the nines, lavished with diamonds and pearls and topped with hats that would put a Galarian Weezing to shame. Such extravagance was enough to turn his stomach but where there was money there would no doubt be low inhibitions and loose purse strings. He ushered closer in efforts to size up the would-be contenders; a jovial gentleman, a yuppie and socialites quartet, and a tall... woman?

Emp flushed with embarrassment all over again. Drafted in what felt like the roaring twenties by the paranormal ferris wheel, the drag artiste was surely ahead of their time. They were serving the sort of charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent that would make them the one to bet on – as much a rival as a prospect. He had never found gaggles of girls approachable, no less the wealthy sort. And while the moustachioed fellow piqued Emp’s interest, choosing him would leave just one seat open for the remaining businessmen pair. With targets acquired, the trainer cleared his throat and gingerly approached, taking solace at least in his Solosis safety net.

“Ahem.” He started, voice struggling to carry over the casino cacophony. It was all he could do to get a word in edgeways above the sound of cards whirring in the hands of the dealers, the bells and whistles of the various slot machines, and the racketing noise of their levers being pulled. He drew even closer, a sore thumb admidst the socialites: “You three look like the winning sort, how do you fancy your odds at an all bets Pokemon race?"
 
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Fizzy Bubbles Resident Bird Keeper
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Emp’s elevator pitch would fail to get him as far as the first floor, the aristocrats turning their nose up as his proposal without so much as a second thought. The drifter felt his cheeks flush a shade of pink, making a beeline for the doors through to the Magikarp races – an effort to save face, more than anything. Just as he was clear of the cigar fog, the two gentlemen made a surprise heel turn; the cerebral cell had them spellbound, and with three more contenders the race would be off in no time!

Before they had a chance to change their minds (or unchange, more like) the trainer scoured the crowd of punters in search of extra bodies. One of the two gentlemen gave him a prod in the right direction, a booth crowded with a cast of the casino’s highest rollers. They were decked up to the nines, lavished with diamonds and pearls and topped with hats that would put a Galarian Weezing to shame. Such extravagance was enough to turn his stomach but where there was money there would no doubt be low inhibitions and loose purse strings. He ushered closer in efforts to size up the would-be contenders; a jovial gentleman, a yuppie and socialites quartet, and a tall... woman?

Emp flushed with embarrassment all over again. Drafted in what felt like the roaring twenties by the paranormal ferris wheel, the drag artiste was surely ahead of their time. They were serving the sort of charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent that would make them the one to bet on – as much a rival as a prospect. He had never found gaggles of girls approachable, no less the wealthy sort. And while the moustachioed fellow piqued Emp’s interest, choosing him would leave just one seat open for the remaining businessmen pair. With targets acquired, the trainer cleared his throat and gingerly approached, taking solace at least in his Solosis safety net.

“Ahem.” He started, voice struggling to carry over the casino cacophony. It was all he could do to get a word in edgeways above the sound of cards whirring in the hands of the dealers, the bells and whistles of the various slot machines, and the racketing noise of their levers being pulled. He drew even closer, a sore thumb admidst the socialites: “You three look like the winning sort, how do you fancy your odds at an all bets Pokemon race?"
Emp
Having agreed to seek out participants for the upcoming race, you gingerly approach the group of people the taller of the two gentleman had suggested that you attempt to recruit. The sounds of the casino ring out from all around you but you press on with your request to certain members of the party nonetheless, neglecting to even try to permeate the world of the socialites who chattered incessantly.

"What's that, hon? A Pokémon race? I've not taken part in one of those for years... consider me signed up!" The drag artiste strains to hear at first but is quick to nod and beam at you in agreement, sliding an arm through yours before walking you away from the table slightly, "You won't get much out of these lot, they're all about the slots but I was used to race Rhyhorn back in the day if you'd believe it."

Having walked you away from the table you had only just arrived at, she takes another cigarette from a pearl-encrusted tin in the clutch at her side. Popping it in the cigarette holder she had been brandishing previously, she lights it and takes a deep drag through ruby lips, "The name's Bonnie. Bonnie Lass. I usually perform here of an evening but tonight I'm here on a different kind of business."

Clearly enjoying having an air of mystery about her, Bonnie takes another long drag of her cigarette before flicking the ash to one side, her eyes fixed on the Cell Pokémon accompanying you. As the moment hangs in the air for what feels like an eternity, her Pokémon dashes to her side: a Galarian Zigzagoon with the most fabulous red and white coat. Reaching her feet, the Tiny Racoon looks up at you and Solosis inquisitively, its bright blue tongue lolling to one side.

"You look like a trustworthy lad so I'm going to let you in on a secret - there's been some shady goings on around here lately. Stolen Pokémon, missing valuables, the works. Just ask your little Solosis friend, he's seen it all." At the drag artiste's words, the Solosis nods slightly, a strange sadness in his eyes as he bobs in the air beside you, edging ever so slightly closer to line up with your shoulder. He must have been at the casino for some time if the clientele were familiar with his presence.

"I've got my suspicions about who is involved and I'm almost sure it's those two."

Following the cigarette holder she motions in the direction you just came, you spot the two businessmen you had planned to approach alongside Bonnie to invite to the race. If she was right, these weren't the sort of people you would want to get involved with but if she was wrong, it could be anyone and neither of you would be any the wiser.

"With that in mind, we could invite them to join us and maybe I can get to the bottom of the matter. If you'd prefer not to get involved in anything messy, though, I'm sure Solosis and I can introduce you to some of the casino's wayward inhabitants who I'm sure will be keen to show their worth." As she spoke, Solosis beamed and nodded towards a number of Pokémon milling around listlessly: Two Misdreavus waltzed around a grand chandelier above the casino floor without a care for what was going on below whilst a Gothita and a Kirlia stood watching some of the human gamblers and trying to get their attention. Out in the lobby, an Electrike circled repeatedly, sniffing and seemingly trying to spot someone amongst the crowd.

Who will you approach?
 
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Emp
Having agreed to seek out participants for the upcoming race, you gingerly approach the group of people the taller of the two gentleman had suggested that you attempt to recruit. The sounds of the casino ring out from all around you but you press on with your request to certain members of the party nonetheless, neglecting to even try to permeate the world of the socialites who chattered incessantly.

"What's that, hon? A Pokémon race? I've not taken part in one of those for years... consider me signed up!" The drag artiste strains to hear at first but is quick to nod and beam at you in agreement, sliding an arm through yours before walking you away from the table slightly, "You won't get much out of these lot, they're all about the slots but I was used to race Rhyhorn back in the day if you'd believe it."

Having walked you away from the table you had only just arrived at, she takes another cigarette from a pearl-encrusted tin in the clutch at her side. Popping it in the cigarette holder she had been brandishing previously, she lights it and takes a deep drag through ruby lips, "The name's Bonnie. Bonnie Lass. I usually perform here of an evening but tonight I'm here on a different kind of business."

Clearly enjoying having an air of mystery about her, Bonnie takes another long drag of her cigarette before flicking the ash to one side, her eyes fixed on the Cell Pokémon accompanying you. As the moment hangs in the air for what feels like an eternity, her Pokémon dashes to her side: a Galarian Zigzagoon with the most fabulous red and white coat. Reaching her feet, the Tiny Racoon looks up at you and Solosis inquisitively, its bright blue tongue lolling to one side.

"You look like a trustworthy lad so I'm going to let you in on a secret - there's been some shady goings on around here lately. Stolen Pokémon, missing valuables, the works. Just ask your little Solosis friend, he's seen it all." At the drag artiste's words, the Solosis nods slightly, a strange sadness in his eyes as he bobs in the air beside you, edging ever so slightly closer to line up with your shoulder. He must have been at the casino for some time if the clientele were familiar with his presence.

"I've got my suspicions about who is involved and I'm almost sure it's those two."

Following the cigarette holder she motions in the direction you just came, you spot the two businessmen you had planned to approach alongside Bonnie to invite to the race. If she was right, these weren't the sort of people you would want to get involved with but if she was wrong, it could be anyone and neither of you would be any the wiser.

"With that in mind, we could invite them to join us and maybe I can get to the bottom of the matter. If you'd prefer not to get involved in anything messy, though, I'm sure Solosis and I can introduce you to some of the casino's wayward inhabitants who I'm sure will be keen to show their worth." As she spoke, Solosis beamed and nodded towards a number of Pokémon milling around listlessly: Two Misdreavus waltzed around a grand chandelier above the casino floor without a care for what was going on below whilst a Gothita and a Kirlia stood watching some of the human gamblers and trying to get their attention. Out in the lobby, an Electrike circled repeatedly, sniffing and seemingly trying to spot someone amongst the crowd.

Who will you approach?
It was a classic casino caper – the figure in drag eluding to a shady underbelly beneath the guise of neon slots and spinning roulettes. Emp had to wonder if he had been spirited away to this art deco afterlife for a higher purpose, rather than a high stack of cash. There was a pain hidden behind Solosis’ beady eyes that reminded the tourist of a wistful Reuniclus he had met up in the clouds; if Emp had to hazard a guess, the lifelong guest had seen the establishment fall into a corruption beyond recognition. He felt compelled to right this wrong, not least because he was growing fond of the extrasensory embryo.

Following Bonnie’s tail of cigarette smoke back to the businessmen supposedly at the thick of all the thievery, the drifter was given one last chance to opt out of the reconnaissance and wrangle up a more innocuous assortment of contenders, for which the casino was in no part short of: an Electrike sniffing and dashing about the lobby like an excited pup, Gothita and Kirlia tugging at the coattails of gamblers with what could be premonitions, and Misdreavus locked in an haunting courtship around a magnificent chandelier. They could very well pass under the radar of any criminal activity altogether by selecting one of the options above, but Emp had already made up his mind.

“You know what they say about keeping your friends close,” he answered with a coy smirk, “Bonnie, how about we show these boys the race of their lives?” He gestured for a dry whisky from a nearby waiter before offering the drag queen an arm ahead of rubbing shoulders with the racketeers.
 
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