OOC: this is super late, but... happy 4th anniversary, RotR! +1 reward point to everyone*! woooo
Actually make that +2 to everyone as compensation for how slow the main plot has been progressing lately. soz.
(*unless you've used it already in which case you can't use it again)
IC - Jupiter - Eterna City: Such a rattling off of information as this would, logically, require several moments for anyone to process. Jupiter was no exception. It took her around twenty seconds to sort through everything that Amanda had just said, and then another ten to reflect on it. All the while, she held her Tangrowth's Poké Ball forward, the slight shaking of her hand mirroring the terror that had ignited in her eyes at the prospect of meeting Envy again.
At last, after much teeth grinding, she shook her head. "With that kind of attitude, you can't be anything but a Plasma robot," the Galactic Admin scoffed, lowering the Poké Ball. "Regardless, you don't appear to have been informed of exactly what happened to Team Galactic: The entire organization was destroyed, including our research and any personnel that happened to be in Nova during Envy's attack. There is little point in rebuilding when there is nothing to rebuild from." She cast her gaze in the direction of Nova's ruins, brow etched with bitterness. "Team Galactic is done."
IC - Daseos/Seven/Three - Opelucid City: For many long moments, the three Darkrai stared at the place where Kane and Gaigan had once stood. Daseos could not suppress the unease he had felt at the brief transformation that Kane had taken into Seth Vicens' form, given the implications of what he could actually be. Still, they had more pressing matters to deal with, first and foremost being that they needed to track down the pair before they caused any further chaos.
The Fifth Darkrai turned to look at his brother and sister, both of them powerless thanks to his efforts. Though the process had been draining on it, it had been worth it, given that both Seven and Three had been brought back under control. Even without the powers of Space and Time, they could assist him in combating their sister.
The stirrings of the crowd, their awakening from the entrancement that Kane and Gaigan had created, pulled him from his reverie. "Come, my brethren," he said. "We have spent enough time here." With a last look at Kane's throne--and the Liberty Agent standing by it--Daseos, Seven, and Three willed the shadows to encompass them, vanishing into the darkness.
IC - Sonja Baron - Opelucid City: Ryan's words were not lost on Sonja. Nor were the implications of Ray's actions.
And to both, she rolled her eyes.
"Well, regardless," she said, looking around as the dazed crowd began to stir, rumbling with renewed murmurs. "It looks like things are finally settling down. Which is good, but it still begs the question . . . what was any of that even about?"
As Evan's warning reached her ears, she looked in his direction, watching him make his way through the crowd with his entourage of Pokémon. Jenny appeared to be following him, though she had no idea where either of them were headed. A moment later, she watched as the Darkrai vanished into the shadows, having evidently come with some purpose that did not involve attacking the town. Briefly, she wondered what they could have been after . . .
Her thoughts quickly returned to Evan's warning, to which she glanced up in annoyance. "You know, I feel like he keeps on saying that, but it doesn't get any more helpful or mean anything in particular any time that he says it." The Liberty Agent shook her head. "I'm getting a little tired of vague warnings and meaningless destruction, truth be told."
IC - Kyle Eston - Opelucid City: "What . . .?" Kyle turned his head to follow Evan's movements, confused by this sudden warning. A moment later, when it became clear that the Plasma Agent was actually leaving, he scrambled to his feet. "Hey, Evan--wait! What about the--?"
It was too late. Evan had disappeared into the stirring crowd, Jenny in tow, and made no indication that he was about to turn around. Kyle gritted his teeth in frustration, recalling similar actions that had occurred back on Four Island not long ago. Making a mental note to question him about this later, the Liberty Agent turned to face the Darkrai again, enlarging the Poké Ball containing Suicune. Though the Nightmare Pokémon had not moved from their place, one of them--the one known as Five, if Kyle remembered correctly--now faced his comrades, and seemed to be addressing them. With a brief glance around the square, and a lingering sweep in the direction of the throne, Kyle, and Evan, the Darkrai vanished, engulfed in pods of darkness that transported them to some unknown destination.
Kyle let out the breath that he had not realized he was holding. It occurred to him that his legs were shaking, his chest burned with the rapid beat of his heart, and his head felt several times lighter than usual. He closed his eyes, letting his hand drop to his side in order to clip the Poké Ball he was holding back to his belt. Resisting the urge to gag, he leaned against the throne, sliding down to sit on its left armrest, and buried his face in his hands.
Are you alright, Kyle? Suicune asked, her voice a mental coolant that managed to help calm the Liberty Agent's rapid-firing nerves.
He took a moment to steady his breathing, finally opening his hands and clasping them together on his knees. Eyes still closed, he nodded, head down-turned toward the ground. "Yeah . . ." he said. "Yeah, I'm fine. I'm just wondering where everyone else went, and why, because that could have been very, very bad."
Truly, it could have. It was a miracle that a conflict had been avoided here. Kyle remembered all too vividly the difficulty he had had in battling Eight, and that had been with his strongest Pokémon against a single opponent. If the three Darkrai that had just departed had turned out to be just as malicious as Kane and Six . . . Kyle shuddered at the thought of what a fight against them would have been like.
Amidst the stirring crowd, he picked out Ryan, Ray, and Sonja, all three of whom stood in a triangle of conversation. It took every ounce of willpower that Kyle could muster to not approach them and chew them out for leaving the Darkrai alone so easily, but he nonetheless managed to keep himself in check.
That did not necessarily mean he was not annoyed.
Without a word or a signal, the Liberty Agent pushed himself back to his feet and shouldered his bag, easing his way through the crowd on his way to the Pokémon Center. If nothing else had proven it to Kyle, then this entire ordeal had:
He needed a vacation.
IC - Lust/Greed/Meghan Vert - R&D Lab: The Gastro Acid attack struck, grounding Eelektross. It screeched furiously as it fell to the ground, though quickly picked itself back up and glared at its opponents. However, it made no move to attack yet, instead coiling its body.
Zoroark growled in frustration, raising a hand to cover its face as Guinevere's Ice Beam struck it. Before the eyes of the combatants, the Dark-Type's body began to freeze solid, a thick layer of ice creeping down its arm and beginning to encompass its entire body. With each passing moment, the Illusion Pokémon grew more angry, until at last it forced itself into a slow run toward the Psychic-Type. Every step brought with it a stronger and stronger glow around Zoroark's claws, the Pokémon virtually racing the ice slowing it down in its attempt to attack the Gardevoir. With surprising speed, it moved it, thrusting its claws forward . . .
. . . only for its attack to stop just short of Guinevere's face, halted by the full freezing of the Zoroark's body.
Lust did not seem to notice her Pokémon's predicament, nor Greed hers. Both girls stared across the field, each focused intently on Vert and James, respectively. The atmosphere of the room seemed to grow heavier the longer their gazes lingered, relieving only for a brief moment as they glanced at one another. Lust raised an eyebrow; Greed almost pouted at her sister, but eventually looked away.
"We're not quite done yet, are we?" Lust cooed, looking back at Vert. As she said it, the frozen Zoroark before Guinevere vanished, and a half-frozen one appeared behind the Gardevoir, fully delivering a Dark Pulse at point-blank range before truly succumbing to the freezing effects of Ice Beam. Lust quickly recalled the injured Pokémon, sending out in its place her Milotic. With a quick nod at her sister, Eelektross and Milotic swapped places--the former moving to combat James, the latter challenging Vert's Galvantula.
What are they playing at . . .? Vert wondered, furrowing her brow in frustration. Nothing about this situation could be seen as logical. Why would Lust send out a Water-Type if she knew that she would be going up against an Electric-Type by switching opponents immediately after? Surely she had something else at her disposal more suited to take out Galvantula? And . . . why had they decided to switch right after she had mentioned it to James . . .?
It dawned on her then that the mental channel between herself and her teammate had gone dead silent.
It did not stay that way for long.
Do you really believe your thoughts are safe from me, Meghan?
The researcher had to suppress a gasp at the new voice in her head. It did not take a brain as powerful as hers to realize who it was--the voice was all too recognizable, even with how recently she had learned it.
You're fooling yourself, Executive--and I think you know it, Lust continued. A small smirk crossed her face. You think you're so smart, but really, you're just an insignificant worm with delusions of grandeur. Perhaps Pride would have suited you better. Oh, but . . . perhaps not? I think we both know why I'm here. Right?
You know nothing about me, you petulant little . . . Vert mentally growled. With a verbal growl, she raised her hand. "Galvantula, use Thunderbolt!"
Lust scoffed. "Milotic, let's knock that aside and retaliate with Iron Tail, shall we?" she called to the Tender Pokémon. With very not-tender enthusiasm, Milotic slithered forward, slamming her tail against the Thunderbolt attack with no visible effects on her body. Immediately, she used the momentum to spin around, this time slamming a silver-glowing tail against Galvantula's body, knocking the Electric-Bug-Type back.
Vert's eyes widened. Did I strike a nerve? Lust asked. Heh. I see you don't take retorts so well, do you? Well, let me tell you something, Meghan: I'm going to win this battle, and I'm going to do with by causing your little bug as much pain as possible. She chuckled, a devious sound that sent shivers down Vert's spine. Won't that be nice? I'm getting giddy just thinking about it, myself . . .
To Vert's side, James, too, had noticed a lack of communication from his teammate--as well as Guinevere. However the Sins had done it, it seemed that their full-proof tactic had just gone out the window. And as the Executive was about to discover, that did not necessarily mean he was mentally alone.
A psychic channel . . . The girl's voice rung in his head. Now why didn't I think of that? Greed smiled at James from her perch, eyes narrowing dangerously. Well, I hope you don't mind if I take that idea for myself, James. Just as I'm about to take everything else from you: Your life, your team, your very mind--they are all mine, more pieces that I get to add to my collection. Lucky me!
In all actuality, she seemed very unimpressed with the prospect, particularly as she raised a hand to order her Pokémon to attack. "Eelektross, use Wild Charge!"
She did not specify whether the EleFish Pokémon was meant to attack the injured Guinevere, or James himself--essentially leaving the outcome of the attack up to a gamble.
IC - Silvermind/Esen Windred/Rocket Triad - Cianwood City: Esen Windred.
The word hung on the wind like a flag on a pole. It flew out there, dangling from a tall perch, its bright colors--red, in this case--on display for all to see, loud and clear to all who looked upon it. It was enough to make Silvermind step back and freeze, staring in shock at the young woman before her. She wondered if the name was merely a coincidence--that, perhaps, this Esen was not at all related to the one that Silvermind knew and loathed. Because, in all of her days, she had never thought that this would come back around--that this would ever resurface. There was no way. But no. Silvermind had seen enough to find the small facets of resemblance between her and Esen--the rounded nose, the similar color of her hair, the fierce flame in her eye that warned the Liberty Leader not to cross her.
It was a ghost. It had to be a ghost--a phantom of Silvermind's past, come back to haunt her and crush her with the weight of what she had done. Perhaps it was a punishment, a divine message sent from Arceus himself, to remind of what she had done. Not of the action itself--oh, no; as a Team Liberty Leader, the act had been a necessity of war, and so could be forgiven--but of her folly in executing the act. Try as she might, she had never learned how to separate the two halves of her enemies--the half that was just that, her enemy; and the half that was human. Perhaps it was a result of her upbringing, coming from the Battle Area in Sinnoh, or perhaps it was simply a habit born of her hatred of Team Rocket; regardless of the reason, Silvermind had always focused exclusively on the latter, forgetting that those she fought were, underneath all of their immoral acts, people.
People with lives. Beliefs. Families.
People with children.
It was almost enough to make her charge right at the Gym Leaders behind her, so that she may bury what guilt she bore beneath the tide of battle. She didn't. Silvermind maintained her composure. And, leaving Cyan and Jayron to occupy the trainers behind her, she lowered her hand, staring into the face of her enemy's child.
"You're Ace's daughter," she said, her voice barely audible over the sound of flying attacks.
Esen's glare intensified. "Yeah, I am," she said, her tone half proud, half disdainful. "Still think you have authority over me?"
Silvermind closed her eyes, gritting her teeth. "Look," she said, hardly believing that things had come to a point where it was necessary for her to protect someone who, only a year ago, would have made the perfect political target. She opened her eyes. "I understand why you don't trust us, but please listen to reason. You've done a wonderful job here, I admit that--I can't think of anyone else who could have taken out three Gym Leader-level Pokémon at once--but let us take over now. As one of Team Liberty's leaders, I can assure you that no further damage will be caused here."
"Do you think I'm that stupid?" Esen asked. "I know who you are. I also know that, contrary to what you say, Liberty Leader Silvermind can't put on her shoe without causing millions of dollars of collateral damage." Silvermind's eyes widened. "Further, I have no interest in cooperating with the woman who got my mom kil--"
She was interrupted by a surprised shout from behind Silvermind. Esen immediately looked up, gasping in surprise, and pushed the Liberty Leader out of the way, before kicking backward herself. Seconds later, a white and yellow beam of energy struck the ground where they had stood, blackening the pavement. Recovering, Silvermind rolled to her feet, looking around just in time to see Surge's Manetric land and absorb the remaining energy from its Charge Beam attack, before dodging an attack from her Tyranitar.
Silvermind took a moment to gather herself again, letting out a shaky breath. After a moment, she looked over at Esen, who--though rubbing a burned shin--appeared fine. She just . . . the Liberty Leader thought, before cutting herself off with a shake of her head. Never mind. We need to get these three under control . . .
OOC: Will post as Ethan and Gavin next time. In the meanwhile, Blade and Minun, we need to figure out which names from our list have been used--be sure to identify your Zephyr members.