IC - Sonja Baron - Nimbasa City: "Hm..."
The Liberty Agent turned her head, looking out over the water. The mirror-like surface reflected the rays of the setting sun, casting pale pink and orange ribbons in every direction. Seems like everyone is always trying to prove something, Sonja mused, thinking specifically of Sophia. The Ford agent's intentions had been made clear during their confrontation--demonstrating the collateral damage caused by the Rocket-Liberty War--but her method of going about it had been simply monstrous. Even then, she was only one of many examples, and yet another that Sonja could not figure out how to understand no matter how much she tried.
By the sounds of it, this appeared to be one of those cases, if Ray's guesses were true. And despite his word, she wasn't so sure that the possibility of the conflict spreading again to Unova was the biggest thing at stake.
"Are you planning on going after him?" Sonja asked, her tone a bit too casual for the amount of interest she was showing in her friend's story.
IC - Alakazam - Cianwood City: The Alakazam considered this request for a moment, before nodding. I will allow this, the Psychic-Type said. However, we have little time to continue this discussion--there is something happening in Goldenrod City, something that could quickly spread. I ensure Jupiter's safety.
It paused again, looking to the sky. Though Cero may not have known it, under Joker's authority, Johto had developed in recent years as the psychic hub of the world. The web Alakazam referred to was exactly that: hundreds of different, psychic-imbued minds communicating with one another across the region, primarily acting as an information relay network for Joker's forces, orchestrating responses to and delivering news of different developments across the region. Now was one such time, as the network sensed the activity in Johto's capital city, flaring alive with each new demonstration of power.
Alakazam closed its eyes. Were these powers not destroyed with the Ten? Hm...
IC - Rocket Agents - Goldenrod City: A sudden rumbling caught the attention of the various guards and police tasked with established a perimeter around Joker's designated zone, though they could not see what the source was. They, like the civilians evacuating nearby, virtually froze in their steps, looking back in the direction of where the fight had been taking place.
One curious deputy climbed on top of one of the Rocket vans, pulling his binoculars to his face and peering through the glass. Further down the street, past the large crowd of evacuees, there seemed to be no activity--just more and more civilians. As he peered closer, however, and as they neared, he could tell that something was wrong. They were not running in the same way the others had been--out of fear or confusion. No; these people bore a distinct body language, one befitting of the term irate.
The deputy lowered his binoculars. "Oooh, dear..."
The enraged civilians descended on the unaffected citizens, a collision announced by roars and shouts and screams and other noises befitting what was effectively a riot. The Rocket guards ran forward, sending out their own Pokémon to try and stem the tide of people, as well as protect those civilians who were not attacking. In seconds, the line evaporated, and in the chaos, the deputy could see that there were other Rockets acting against them--as if they, too, had been affected by whatever was driving these people to anger--which, all things considered, they probably had been.
The deputy moved slowly backwards, toward a radio set-up, and called for back-up.
IC - Gavin Braner/Ethan Worth - Ecruteak City: "Nothing here, nothing there, nothing... anywhere," Ethan said. "Hm..." He tapped his foot, looking around. He and Gavin had searched the area where "Mr. Rage" had first appeared, including where he had battled against Riley's forces, to no avail. Whatever traces of his presence he might have left, they were nowhere to be found, no doubt thanks to the reconstruction efforts.
"Well, not quite. Catch." Ethan looked over at him, throwing his hands up as a green stone dropped toward him. Opening his palms, he was surprised--and delighted--to see a Leaf Stone. Gavin merely nodded at him as he stood up, dusting his jeans off. "Figured you'd find a better use for that than me."
"Aw, thanks, Gav," Ethan said, grinning. "Though, I'm not sure it's exactly safe for Suya to get his leaves on this, you know?" Gavin shrugged. "Well, thanks, pal."
"Yuup," Gavin responded. "So, what next, then?"
"Hm..." Ethan pocketed the stone, rubbing his chin in thought. "Well, we could always go back to Abyss and find something else to look into. Doesn't seem like anything's going to come of--" He looked away as his PokéGear beeped, at the same time that Gavin's did. Opening it, he read the emergency alert, which indicated that Goldenrod had come under attack. Ethan frowned, looking back up at Gavin. "Shall we check it out?"
"Despite the fact that literally every other free agent will be doing the same, Rocket or otherwise?" Gavin asked. "Sure, why not? Maybe we'll get lucky with this..."
Ethan nodded. "Then let's go! To the Worthmobile!"
And to the Worthmobile, they went.
IC - Shadow Admin Joker - Lake of Rage: The door to Joker's personal equipment locker swung open, revealing the Shadow Admin in question as she stepped out onto the launch platform. As the elevator began to rise, Joker looked herself over in the reflection of a thin, collapsible mirror that rose from the metal beneath at her feet. Her suit consisted of a flexible, form-fitting black body suit, covered at all vital points--the chest, pelvis, arms, and legs--by thicker, purple-hued armor. Her hands bore the pair of psychic focuser gauntlets that she had developed over the course of the war; tucked under her arm was a similar helmet with a see-through faceplate. Put together, the suit was designed to enhance Joker's psychic abilities, raising their potential to the equivalent of a Psychic-Type Pokémon's.
As the mirror retracted into the floor, Joker raised her helmet, sliding it over her head. The built-in comm activated, connecting her to Abyss's command center--as well as Johto's overall psychic network.
"All systems looking good," Joker heard a female technician say. "As does the suit itself, ma'am. Permission to express how awesome its design is?"
"Denied, Willem," the Shadow Admin answered, eliciting a disappointed groan. "What's the current situation in Goldenrod?"
"A second pulse was detected, emanating from the first, Admin Joker," another, male tech reported. "It was weaker, but it was almost immediately followed by reports of increased aggression in the area."
"Which brings to mind what happened to Executive Riley's Zapdos when the subject was first encountered," Anderson's voice cut in. "Make of that what you will, ma'am."
Hm... Joker shook her head, stepping forward as the elevator arrived at the surface of the Lake of Rage. "I'll consider that on my way over," she said. "Get the system ready."
And so they did. Joker stood quite literally in the center of the lake, on a flat, metal platform just a few feet above the surface of the water. Four, square elevators were connected to this same place, all set equidistantly from a raised, totem-like structure, in which four square indents had been set. At her order, four spires rose all around the lake, likewise set in a diamond-shape, each--if one looked closely--set in what would be the space between the corners of two of the elevator platforms.
Joker approached the totem carefully, pulling one of her magnetized Pokéballs from her suit's belt. Leviathan, her Golurk, resided in this capsule. Through the translucent yellow and black top, she could see the Ghost-Ground-Type's shrunken form--ironic, considering that it was, in truth, larger than most Golurk. The golem's stance was one of total stoicism, as if Leviathan knew and was ready to face what lay before it, just as it had when the modification to its power limiter had been made--and as it had when additional control elements had been constructed for it, specifically for what was to come.
With her own mind decided, Joker reached forward, setting the Pokéball in the opening. She stepped back.
"Ready?" Anderson asked.
"Activate the machine," Joker said, snapping her eyes and head to the side slightly out of habit. Anderson got the underlying message, and proceeded to pass the order on. As the technicians worked, Joker looked at the two spires within her vision, watching as they lit up with energy. A brilliant flash of light forced her to cover her eyes for a moment, accompanied by a sudden surge of heat to either side. Daring to peek through the gap between her arms, Joker saw the beams of power rushing from the four spires to the totem, siphoned down into Leviathan's Pokéball.
Above the rush of wind, she heard a sharp crack.
"Cut the power!" she yelled into her comm. Within seconds, the beams of light vanished, allowing Joker to move forward in spite of the heat around her. Reaching forward, she levitated Leviathan's Pokéball out of the totem, not daring to touch it. The container had been burned by the surge of energy, its white bottom now turned a scorched grey. Its top was no longer translucent, bearing instead a noticeable, splintered crack across its surface.
A telepathic probe of the inside revealed, however, that Leviathan was still alive--and was absolutely brimming with energy.
And yet, relieved as she was, something about the golem seemed... different. It was not as if it bore any significant mental changes--Joker would have been able to directly detect those--but instead...
Throwing caution to the wind, Joker tossed the Pokéball into the air. White light emerged, as bright as the sun--and it continued. More and more light, much more than what should have for the golem's size. It took Levithan's shape, and then continued to grow larger and larger and larger, to the point of overshadowing much of the Lake of Rage itself. At first, Joker's eyes widened in shock and surprise, unsure of how to process this development. The more closely she observed the golem's now-gargantuan size, however, the more realizations hit her. As the prospect of the sheer power now at her disposal crossed her mind, Joker's alarm quelled itself. As she realized that her work had been successful--that this single Pokémon could literally crush any others--a smile grew on her face.
As the thought crossed her mind that she could overthrow Sleight himself with this, Joker grinned broadly. Carefully, she replaced the damaged Pokéball, closing her eyes and connecting her mind with Leviathan's. The golem looked down at her. From sixty feet up, Joker seemed so much smaller than before. It was... strange. A familiar sensation washed over it, however, and so it reached out with its hand, palm up. She stepped up, allowing the golem to raise its hand and place her on its shoulder.
"Ladies and gentlemen," Joker said into her comm, telekinetically holding herself on Leviathan's shoulder as the golem lifted from the ground with Fly. "I believe we have had a successful test run."
A hearty laugh filled the comm link as the golem took off, heading in the direction of Goldenrod City.
OOC: So, Alku, between the Shadow Admin, the sixty-foot Golurk, Zach, Ryan, Gavin, Ethan, and assorted other people, now seems like it would be a good time for me to say, "If I'm throwing too much stuff your way, tell me to stop."
So, uh... yeah.
(but seriously--if I'm throwing too much stuff your way, tell me to stop. for reals. :3 )