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Private/Closed At the Mercy of Maiestas

If you are interested in joining, please submit a bio here, in the discussion thread
Current Approved Players:
Me (Obviously)
@Merciless Medic
@PKMN Trainer Crimson
Pokémon battles. A staple of humanity. No matter the era, Pokémon working alongside humans to attain ever higher goals has been an intricate part of our history. From hunting, working, and now sport, Pokémon were always an ally. Always alongside us.

But, as Pokémon battling continued to increase it's circle of influence, some would say it became too accessible. That any child could pick up a Pokémon and have a chance at becoming champion. This may in fact be true. And that's where we here at the Saffron Conglomerate have stepped in to provide a whole new experience and challenge.

Welcome to Maiestas, the region of challenge, beauty, and mastery. Filled with lovely vistas and a league unlike that seen in the rest of the world. Here, we prioritize challenge over teaching basic skills- every trainer must earn their position in this region, even to attain their first badge.

Not a trainer? No problem. The Maiestas regions has plenty of amazing locales that will take your breath away- truly, Maiestas is the one region to go for any type of trip. Mountain climbing? The Iron mountain range is for you! Relaxing on the beach? Come on down to Saltrind city. How about an excursion into the past? The Bleak Ruins are a wonderful view into those who once lived in this region before. And no worries about safety- our highly qualified* Enforcers are constantly keeping down any possible trouble in this region!

So from all of us from the Saffron Conglomerate to you- Welcome to Maiestas, a region like no other!
A boat docked that morning, in the port town of Primum. Convenient they left the starting town out of the pamphlet. The city sure seemed luxurious from it's glorious main street, easily spotted from the deck. Of course, most things were far less shiny under the surface. For all the talk the Conglomerate built up Maiestas to be, they left Primum out. And not exactly for a bad reason.

It wasn't long after docking until passengers began to descend. Trainers, vacationers, maybe even a few business men and women. Whoever they were, they had arrived at their destination. The Town of beginnings.

"Town" was a bit of euphemism. The "town" was far more akin to a city, encompassing a large swath of land and boasting a bustling population. In any case, any trainer who wished to take on the famed league would end up here- and among those was a young man by the name of Arte Parris.

And he soon joined a line of similar trainers, all with different stories, all with different demeanor. Some bright eyed, some looking for escapes. Perhaps a couple washed up aces looking for another go around. Arte personally didn't know anyone there. He never really was the one who made friends easily.

As the line trudged forward into the registration building, a slew of booths and more lines presented themselves to the trainers. Several clerks awaited the newcomers to the challenge- each doing their best to smile and comfort these trainers. After all, this was their first introduction to the region- no doubt it had to be a happy one.

As the blond haired long man walked up to the booth, one of these smiling people greeted him. "Welcome new trainer," The woman said in a jovial voice. "Here to receive a license? It's a 1500P fee."

And so the first price of Maiestas come. At least the fee was honest. You were only allowed to start the journey with 3000P, but every brochure and marketing the Conglomerate sent out insured that this was for the journey, not before. As such, it always encouraged bringing at least 4500P instead. Arte had the common sense to read up on a few things before coming here. He silently passed the fee across. Next came the questions. Simple stuff.

"Name's Arte. With an E on the end. Parris. Two Rs. Seventeen years old. Male. If you couldn't tell." It didn't take long for his license to get printed out. The unusually happy clerk handed it over, her smile never fading.

"Safe travels! Please proceed to the security check over there." The woman said. Arte swore he saw her face get rather glum, if just for a minute. He didn't dwell on it, and her smile returned nearly as quick as it faded. As if the overworked woman realized her mistake.

He looked down at the card as he walked along. "Arte Pearris"...At least she heard the two Rs part.

The lines didn't stop there. More booths, metal detectors and other such security checking machines. Of course, it was less a security check and more a reassurance you weren't bringing something beneficial alongside you. Beneficial for your Pokemon training career, at the least. Apparently even PokéPuffs and Beans were considered "beneficial". Not that Arte had any way to obtain such goods in Unova. Expensive import stuff to him.

As they routed through what belongings he had brought, they eventually found the one Pokémon he had brought with him- contained within a plain, standard ball. A single word etched on to it's case. "Sugar".

Sugar had been a companion of his for some time. Arte hadn't really desired a training career before his interests in Maiestas. Rather, he had interests in a friend. Pokémon were far harder to insult than people, as it turned out. Pet them and feed them and they'd be pretty loyal. Not to mention, the cleanliness of the species meant his parents didn't mind having the chinchilla creature around. He hadn't done formal training with his old friend, but the Pokémon had once lived in the wild. No doubt he'd adapt.

Security let him through with little fanfare, other than a simple "Clear.", and pointing him towards an exit, handing back his satchel, his belongings safely returned. One last stack of pamphlets greeted the trainers on their way out. A label helpfully identified them as maps. One last addition for his journey, Arte supposed.

And so Arte walked into the main street. He wasn't exactly sure how to feel. Just like that, he was here. Maiestas.

"Alright then." He told himself, opening up the map. There was only one way out of the city it seemed. A forest known as the "Chittering Wood". Infested with Bug-types. Suggested stocking up at the local Pokémart first. Not a bad idea.

Arte held his satchel close, as he took the first steps towards his journey. At the very mercy of Maiestas.
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Maxine stood by the side of the ship, looking over a map of the region. Hand-drawn notes covered the notable locations, such as common types, and new places were drawn on. He folded up the map and looked out on the waves below. A group of Remoraid swam below, in tight formation, as the teen watched with intrigue.

It was a while before they finally reached the dock. The main area, when he first stepped out, looked nice. He followed through with the crowd, being directed through security and check-ins. Some people caught his eye, but he mainly laid low and watched not to bump into anybody. It wasn't long before he reached the registration desk. Lines of people were separated to different booths, employees with cheerful, yet probably fake, smiles introducing them. Finally, Maxine reached the spot in his line, after being stuck between two fellow trainers, where he could register.

"Welcome new trainer!" The young man in front of him said, eyes wide open. "Here to receive a license? It's a 1500P fee." Luckily, he had packed excess cash- just enough for the standard registry fee and the starting balance. He handed the due amount to the worker, then began to list off his details in order.

"Maxine, with a n, Terreth. 17, male." The machine jammed when printing the first time, but it was the second time when it finally printed. It was actually correct, with all the information, so that was nice. Next up, the security check.

It went without a hitch, for most of it. He didn't really had to be pulled aside, and the teen made sure to follow all the rules while packing, so there wasn't anything wrong with that. Some Ace caused a disturbance about not being able to bring his healing items, and had to be dragged out by security. Eventually, he reached the end, and got his backpack and-most importantly- his pokéball.

Mito had been with him for a while. They had worked for months on traveling and techniques, and were prepared- at least he hoped. The Psychic-type had been preparing barriers and telekinesis. Of course, most of their time was spent bonding.

As he stepped out onto the street, he felt ready to face Maiestis.
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Not able to note the hours, Keon watched the sun. The massive, brilliant light source rose early in the morning and was now perched high above the smoke of pollution in the distance. It glistened a perfect reflection onto the blue sea below; a scene that Keon wished he could express how he felt about. It was forever ago that that the Maiestas region first took Keon prisoner, soon after sucking the very soul out of the young boy and leaving him all shriveled up like a tasteless raisin. The soil still felt the same, it hugged Keon’s shoes and infiltrated the thin leather surface. This time, the boy did not flinch- he did not think to spare the poor, cheap items by moving them onto dryer land. This was Maiestas, shoes were the least of one’s worries. Keon watched eager face with sparkling eyes, he heard nervous small-talk and wondered if he were ever so innocent. These poor, stupid souls: they had no idea what they were getting into. And yet, here was Keon… well aware of the treachery of the path this city paved. Keon, just as well as any, knew what he was getting himself into; and yet he was doing it anyways. If not for the alleged fame; wealth; and glory, perhaps Keon was taking part in this mission because their still is a spark of fight, which boils in his blood. At any rate, he couldn’t tell you. But he had to many blisters on his feet, his knees ache like hell, and he hadn’t slept in days- if their ever was a part of Keon that wanted to turn back, it’s too late for that now.

Keon recognized this place so well. He was once too young to even attempt at registering as a trainer; but the scene seemed so clear. Perhaps the hopeful 11 year old replayed the scene of him getting that license so many times that Keon had adopted it as his own memory. He didn’t follow in line like the others, obedient sheep who were already bowing down to the high powers without even realizing. Keon despised himself for knowing these things, because he knew these things and he didn’t care. His eyes were already opened, but he still couldn’t break the system. His hesitant steps lead him towards the slowly dissipating line, he too was a sheep. He was the worst sheep, because he knew exactly what was happening- and he was helpless against it.
“Welcome to the Maiestas Region!” the man grinned ear to ear. He was not phased by Keon’s haunting expression, or the scowl that followed across Keon’s lips at the word ‘Maiestas’. “It’ll be 15-”
“Yeah, Yeah. I know.” Keon groaned as he threw a neatly stacked pile of money at the man. No, this wasn’t Keon’s money. Honestly, he wouldn’t be able to recall the face of the man who he stole from. He doubted the guy would miss it anyways. There were people here who had enough money that they didn’t know what to do with it, which was kind of ironic that they still lived in the same place where people didn’t even have enough to eat.

Keon rolled his eyes at the unfortunate series of questions that followed. He didn’t recall anyone else taking so long, but it felt like his interview was going by very slowly.
“Last name, please.” Keon let out a growl, this guy was really pushing his buttons. It didn’t take much, in fact the man behind the booth was not doing anything more than his job.
“Look man…” Keon paused, let out a huff and answered the rest of the questions with very little complaint. When pointed over to the security check. Part of him didn’t want to go, but the gentle shove of an eager trainer from behind him caused Keon to stumble forward. With an indignant huffed, Keon resumed his gruff expression and walked towards the security booth. Was he scared? Keon wouldn’t admit it, but he really didn’t want to have to start over again. Some part of knowing the rules and the people of his little slums made Keon comfortable, and though he appears unphased by all the commotion- Keon wasn’t quite ready to leave that lifestyle.

Keon maneuvered through the security lines with ease. He didn't bring anything with him- so it was pretty simple. The little belongings he owned were stored on his belt. A thin wad of cash and a pokeball, he lived an honest life- sort of. To the side, he could see which officers were having their fun. Some of them would stop the trainers, and make them pay to continue- others would just slip the money In their pocket without the blink of an eye from the oblivious trainer. Keon, of course, had grown accustomed to seeing such corruption; but he still couldn't peel his eyes away from the other trainers around him. “Hey.” A gentle voice caused Keon to tense up before he looked down at a wide eyed child who likely just wanted to get by. The kid opened his mouth, perhaps to ask a question or make a request, but Keon just shook his head- ignoring the young trainer completely as he marched through the crowd with his head down. It's not like anything or anyone at this point meant anything to Keon. They meant nothing to the rest of the world; they were prey. And if Keon wanted to succeed in his own quest, he knew he couldn't sympathize with the prey.

Keon's hallow gaze traced the road ahead of him. He knew this road, he walked this road- it still seemed unfamiliar and new. Chittering Woods that’s where the real adventure would begin. That’s where the challenged will start rolling in, it’s where the strong get weeded out from the weak. Shifting his weight between his feet, Keon stared off into the distance for a moment; hand hovering over the pokeball at his waist. Has it begun, yet? As if waiting for something to initiate his ambition, waiting for someone to call out ‘Go’ and shoot a starting pistol. Would this be too much? Would he snap? Frankly, part of Keon hopes he’d just die halfway through the journey: though it was a high expectation. Cold eyes set on the distance, Keon hadn’t realized that he was moving forward.

A bump in the road caused Keon to stop. A mere tap on the shoulder of the male beside him. Had Keon walked into this dude? Or was this guy looking for trouble? Unable, to decipher the situation- Keon simply shifted his dead gaze towards the other male ( @BurbleBurble ), as if expecting him to answer.


Previously Ampharos' Dragon Blood
"We're almost there, Ari," he cried in victory as the Normal/Flying type landed in the Port Of New Beginnings. Walking up to the registration building, he returned Ari and Bloom (Floette) into their Pokeballs as he saw an Ace Trainer, whining about "my Max Potions!" as he was booted out of the building. Quickly, his excitement was replaced with fear. "Will I end up like that Ace? No, of COURSE not!" As he walked in, he was escorted by a beaming man to the booth. "1500 P, please," the woman said halfheartedly as she took his satchel filled with Pokedollars. The buisness was done, and as he stepped into the bright (or so it seemed) world of Maiestas, he wondered what adventures he would experience.....if he could find them. Ulp! He forgot his Maiestas map! As he stumbled around town, he arrived at a vandalised PokeMart with the word "Pricey-Mart" covering the sign. The graffiti was right! Everything was expensive, so he bought a few Heal and Quick Balls and 2 Revives and left before he found a mall. If he could drain his funds in Lillycove, who knows what would happen here?
"Everybody out! Ari, Salia, Surski, Bloom! Let's explore the new town of Primum!" Neo spots a stratch of grass near a tree and runs over. A perfect spot to practice performing! Bloom sets the stage with Lucky Chant, forming a rainbow-y sheen over his area. Salia uses Petal Blizzard after to have Neo's Pokemon hover in the air. Ari uses Power Swap to make orbs emanate from the quintet of performers and come together in a star shape. A few passerby turn to look at the now-sparkling petals surrounding the boy and his dancing Pokemon. To finish the performance, Surski uses Signal Beam to make a light-show surrounding the Power Swap stars as Neo and his Pokemon take a bow. He spots a kid, about his age walking in the crowd. ( @Sciencewars ) "Hey, you! Want to come up here and perform with me?"
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The minute the ship had docked, Krista had darted off it like a zubat out of the distortion world. There was a noticeable green tinge to her pale cheeks that immediately started to clear up the second her feet touched dry, solid, land. Needless to say, Krista hated sea travel. Oh sure, the views had been breathtaking on her way here. She even managed to catch a glimpse of a Wailord breaching for air. This however was completely overshadowed by the fact that the young girl had not yet acquired her sea legs yet. Or her stomach for that matter.

Letting out a content sigh, she whispered out to herself "Thank Arceus we made it..." all the while comically hugging the ground. Many of the new trainers stepping off the boat either gave her the odd look or a small chuckle in amusement, not that any of it bothered her. She was a tough cookie and rarely let idle gossip get to her.

Lifting her head up from the wooden walkway, she gaped at the height of some of the buildings here in the port of beginnings. Primum town looked absolutely gorgeous to the young lady and she couldn't help but wonder how pretty it would look during the winter, when all was quiet and thin blankets of snow covered everything. Did they get snow here? Surely they did! Standing back up on her two feet, Krista allowed herself to flow into the beat of the crowd that had long since began lining up at the stands nearby. It was obvious she would need to go in that direction as well in order to get her license and gear. Waiting in line (albeit impatiently), it finally arrived at her turn, the woman in the booth giving her too bright of a smile. "Hello there! Here for your trainer ID and licensee?"

Krista refrained from giving her a deadpanned expression and bit her tongue, forcing her snarky response back down her throat. 'Of course i'm here for that. Why else would i be here?' Nodding her head, the woman quickly began typing and asking her the basics. Name, age, place of birth. The usual. Before she new it, she was taking a picture and soon had a small little license. "Wonderful~ Now then, the fee for the Poke License is 2000 P please." She asked cheerfully. As Krista put her hand in her purse, a thought graced her mind at the number. 'That's odd...i thought the price on the pamphlet was 1500 P...did they up it?' All the while, she didn't notice the very small smirk growing on the middle aged lady's face.

As Krista paid her fee and proceeded through the security check with no problems, she sighed grumpily and sat on a nearby bench, immediately opening up her bag and then her small purse. "1500...1600...1650. Really? That's all i have left? Ugh, i new i should of taken that extra amount from mom...not off to a great start Krista." She scolded herself quietly and silently observed an Ace trainer shouting profanities and curses at a security guard that wouldn't let him through. "Harsh." She muttered as she began to dig in her bag again, pulling out a map of the region. "Let's seeeeee....ah! The Chittering Woods will be my first route it would seem! Alright, lets head to the pokemart, stock up and go train Brush!" She shouted out, gently patting the pokeball located on her waist.
Almost immediately after getting into the main area, Maxine scans the town, walking into a nearby mart that seemed to be covered in graffiti. The sliding doors opened quite smoothly, and he walks inside of the well-lit building. Moving over towards the mart, he forked over some cash for two basic pokéballs, two antidotes, and two potions. It drained a lot of his funds, but it pays to be prepared. He stands in the crowd as he thinks.

Chittering woods. First area other than a town wild Pokémon can be encountered throughout the typical journey. Possible threats: Ariados and Spinarak are common, as well as Weedle. Good thing I bought antidotes. Butterfree, Paras, and the Scatterbug line are commonly known for spreading condition-causing powder. Possible catches: Shuckle, Yanma, and Sewaddle are all relatively safe and peaceful. Mito, being psychic, will have trouble, so perhaps recruit another person to travel with? Survival theory says...

"Hey, you! Want to come up there and perform with me?"

Maxine turns to look, taking a small bit of a defensive stance, but soon relaxing. The other person, pointing at him, seemed to be a performer of some kind. The glittering air around him seemed to match that description, has his words. Seemed to have a Swablu, a flying type- perfect for the forest. A good partner?

The silver-haired boy broke out of his trance by a light nudge on his arm. He turned around to face a small, floating, green ball- his Pokémon. She must have let herself out. He scratches her on the top on her body and turns back around to speak to the person addressing him.

"Hello. I'm not very much of a performer, apologies."


Previously Ampharos' Dragon Blood
"Hello. I'm now very much of a performer, apologies." Neo keeps his hand outstretched as he sees a Solosis staring at his mini "stage" and says "Your Solosis looks like it begs to differ. Performing is easy, don't worry. All you have to do is flop around and clash some moves. I'll worry about the entertaining part." Hmm... that Trainer Card says Maxine Terreth... Always useful to know someone's name... "So your name's Maxie, huh? Well, Maxie, if you won't come up here, at least let your Solosis try performing. It doesn't take long to learn. While you decide, the show must go on, so here's a little demo about performing.!"

"First, set the stage with a large-range move, such as Solosis' Wonder Room. Rotating moves like Icy wind or Petal Blizzard work best," Neo says as he calls Surski (Surskit) to use Icy Wind. "Now that the stage is set, dance or even flop around," he instructs as he and his Pokemon start dancing to a beat. "After that, call your Pokemon to use clashing moves for special effects. Even one Pokemon can do it. For example, Solosis, would you please use Future sight and then Psyshock for me?"
As the focus is put on the small psychic-type, it floats back behind Maxine, eyes wide. A small, shimmering barrier is erected between the two teens, soon joined by transparent purple one in front. The silver-haired boy turned to comfort the pokémon, who still seems uncomfortable. Eventually, the barriers faded , and it peeked out. "No, really. I mean, I don't think Mito here likes the attention. Also... we haven't really worked on those moves."

He sat back, lost in thought again. He seemed content to just sit and watch as his pokémon rested in his lap. Maxine eventually piped back up again, getting up from his rest. The Solosis on his lap, the so-called 'Mito', moved to his hands as he moved up. "Say, you don't happen to be journeying around? I'm heading out to Chittering Woods, and I think a Swablu would be good to guard against the bugs. The brochure recommended going out with a few people anyway."

He stuck his hand out to the other teen. "Watcha say?"
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Previously Ampharos' Dragon Blood
"'Watcha say?'" the other teen asks Neo as if his Solosis (Mito, was it?) had read his mind. "That sounds great! I'm going that way too! Sorry about the performance stuff bothering you and Mito. Do you, by any chance.... have a map? Mine got lost, haha..." Neo walks over and returns all his pokemon as a swishing sound comes from the Pokeballs. "Everybody, return! I'm ready to go when you are!" The Chittering Woods... our first adventure in Maiestas! However, that 'our' concerns me a bit. Is this Maxie kid who he says he is? I've only heard of one Maxie, and he didn't turn out so well...

What am I thinking? He asked me to go with him! (Well, really he asked Ari..) As Neo checks his supplies, he sets off into the Chittering Woods with his new friend. "Let's see... maybe I can catch a Joltik and add some zaps to my team. Also, your Mito would be a great pair with a Ghost type, like Shuppet or Phantump. Alright! We know what to look for, we know what to do if some wild Pokemon attack, and I think we're all set to go!"
Krista sighed, placing her card in the machine as the poke dollars drained from her account. She had just finished up her shopping and her confidence in her savings plummeted. After buying 5 Pokéballs, 2 Antidotes and 2 potions, she was down to a measly 600 P. “That’s barely enough to buy another potion...”

After biding farewell to the shop keep and stepping outside she was immediately greeted with an odd sight.

A trainer was apparently preforming with his Pokémon randomly out in the street. Sure she had heard of the contests, her mother even having been to one in Hearthome City. It was still a little odd to see however and it had her questioning her fellow trainers behavior.

‘Say...that pamphelt I had said something about the journey being better with friends. Maybe it’d be a good idea to introduce myself?’ Making yo her mind, she nodded confidently and walked up to the now two trainers that were now engaged in a conversation.

“Yo!” The blue haired girl spoke with enthusiasm and self assurance oozing from her mouth. “I overheard something about you two heading out together. Got room for one more?” She gave them a grin before sheepishly looking down to her waist. “Well, two more technicaly. Me and Snover here could be a great asset to your team.”

All the while Krista had to refrain herself from chastising and lecturing the other boy for showing off his Pokémon in the streets like they were measly street performers. It seemed really degrading to her.
Oh. He'd bumped into someone. They bumped into him? Arte didn't know, but he did get caught staring at the fellow he bumped into.

This guy couldn't have been much older than Arte, though he had a hard time believing it. Shorter than him, in a shirt that clearly was too big. Their eyes locked, and Arte stared into something one would describe as...nothing. Not wide eyed. Not grim. Apathetic. The silence between the two was awkward. So, Arte took it upon himself to break said silence.

"You look..." Wait. He caught himself there. He was about to call the guy a trainwreck. But...he could fix this. Maybe. "...you, uh, okay?" Good save. He continued. "Did I bump into you? Or...?" Ah great. Now Arte seemed like he was trying to shift blame. This wasn't working. He could, uh...change subject. "Pokémart." Damn it. Why couldn't he just form the right words? Nevermind. He said enough. He just had to rearrange the words into something understandable.

"What I'm saying is, sorry if I bumped into you, are you okay, and are you looking for the Mart too?" Now that was just too aggressive. Most of the annoyance was at himself, but it could be misinterpreted. He could've just said sorry and not try to call the guy a trainwreck in the first place. He had half a mind to walk away before embarrassing himself more, but something kept him pinned down.

If he had dug the hole and jumped in it, he might as well see what he had found in it.
Maxine turned backwards at the voice, looking at the newcomer. Mito seemed to be taking a nap in his arms as he scanned the blue-haired girl. Pants and a bright orange jacket? Dressed for a colder climate. Along with the Pokémon, He deduced she could be from the Sinnoh mountain area. Maxine realized he probably should have packed a jacket as well, then silently sighed to himself.

He softly scratched the gelatin while thinking of a reply. Hmm? Another one? Well, let's see. Snover. Possibly a good thing. Weak against the bugs and venomous life. Looks well expierienced enough. Good type coverage, handles grass, possibly able to control plant life... well, the booklet said 2+ recommended. Always room for another.

The green-eyed teen shook his head, neither yes or no. It seemed to be him breaking out of a trance. Finally, he opened his mouth to speak. "Why not? I mean, it's always good to have more. Plus, we're all going out, right?"

The small Solosis in his hands shook a bit, then popped open her eyes. Quick nap, I suppose. When it floated up out of his hands and next to his waist, he extended a three-fingered hand. "Maxine Terrath. Call me Triple, if you want. And this little cutie," He pointed to the psychic-type, "Is Mito. She's a bit shy." Despite that, the small Pokémon looked with intruige at the ice-type. Mito, it was, seemed curious.
After all the commotion she’d caused at the security gates Vee had decided to ‘lay low’ for a while. After all, scaring the security guard lady wouldn’t look so good if she wanted to convince people their silk was worth, eh- investing in? That sounded like something mom would say, yes. Figuratively patting herself on the back she swayed her feet back and forth while taking a breather on an outside bench. Taking in the view of so- so many people walking around. Were they all here to get, eh- invested in? She didn’t know, though, they did all have a ‘visitors pass’ like her.

Vee moved her poncho out of the way so she could see her shoulder bag. Digging through the contents she stumbled upon the ‘visitors pass’ that had already found its way to the bottom of her bag after a short, event-less trip to the Pokémart. Everyone had one of these, so maybe inspecting it a bit further wouldn’t be a waste of time? The license, she’d ignorantly dubbed her visitors pass, seemed in order. Hivey Swarms, 17 year old female. Correct!

However, before she could inspect the license further her attention was caught by a gathering of sorts. Probably people showing interest in the little performance that had just occurred amidst the crowd. Maybe she should go show her interest as well? Vee hopped off the bench she’d been ‘laying low’ on and approached the gathering with a jovial pep in her step. Eager to brighten the days of some strangers. “Mornin’!” she beamed, addressing anyone within earshot willing to respond to her greeting, but predominantly focusing on the trainer that had just put on that performance, “I’m Vee! Like the letter. Only less, y’know, ink- ish..?” He mind wandered off for a split second trying to come up with comparisons between her and, well, ink. Or the alphabet in general. “Anyway! I liked it! Are you guys here for interviews as well?” Who knew, maybe they knew where she was supposed to go for her, eh- investing. Might as well ask.


Previously Ampharos' Dragon Blood
"Yo! “I overheard something about you two heading out together. Got room for one more?” Neo faced ANOTHER teen, this time a blue-haired girl in goggles. Maxie seemed okay with a trio, and Neo had nothing against it. The Chittering Woods are pretty dangerous, anyways, and a trio sounds like fun! She looks like she came from Sinnoh, maybe a mountain area? I've been there, the people there are trustworthy. Why am I getting so worried? Anyways, a trio is fine with me!

"Sure! You and Snover are welcome aboard! I'm Neo, by the way. And this is Ari, Salia, Surski, and Bloom!" he says, then whispers very closely into both of their ears: "and I totally didn't catch them in chittering woods. Well, all except for Ari." So, are we ready to go? Do we need anything else?

"Maybe we could do a quick practice battle before we head out. The winner can just give the loser's money back after the battle ends and we won't break any rules."
After shaking Maxine's hand, she quickly learned why to call him triple if the apparent three fingers on his hand were anything to go by. Krista didn't shy away from it however, having seen it before in some of the rock climbers and snowboarders in Snowpoint. Frostbite was no joke and often led to fingers and toes leaving ones body. Snover, now out of his Pokeball, gazed curiously at the other Pokemon, Mito she had heard Triple call her. The Ice and grass type waddled over carefully to Mito before cheerfully calling out it's name, reaching up and plucking some berries off his own body and offering it to the Solosis.

While this occurred, the Sinnoh native focused her attention on the performer, now introduced as Neo. She grinned and fiddled with her goggles as she was accepted by the duo and their Pokemon. She wasn't the best at making friends but managed to bite-back on her coarse language and chastising remarks. Well, she had....until

"Maybe we could do a quick practice battle before we head out. The winner can just give the loser's money back after the battle ends and we won't break any rules." Krista stared at the boy in disbelief and placed her hands on her hips, shooting him a glare.

"What? No way! Why waste our time with a battle and get our Pokemon hurt when we have an entire forest to conquer." She frowned and shook her head, her tone simmering down a bit. "Not to mention, i heard that Pokemon Centers here are money based and it would be a waste of money. We need to do things efficiently and effectively."

That being said, Krista's attention turned to a newcomer. “Mornin’!” She had said to the group as she walked up. Her clothes was a bit of a contrast to her own simple attire and she couldn't help but admire it a bit. The new girl quickly introduced herself but seemed to specifically be speaking with Neo and so she stayed quiet, letting the attention drift from herself to Vee.
The rocking of the ship had done nothing to bother the huge man standing at the bow. The bobbing of the huge vessel carrying so many eager participants to this infested hellhole of an island was his main concern than some uneasy movement. All of these people are getting themselves into something horrible, yet they have no idea about it. He wasn't so sure if the officials of the island will keep people alive or leave them for dead if they get lost, starve, get dehydrated, get sick, or if the Wild Pokémon hunt them down when they are weak and finish them off. He looked behind him to see that there were some kids on the boat, some of them have their whole lives ahead of them. He growled in frustration, as they were wasting away their lives to play a dangerous game of Sinnohan Roulette, but they had no idea that the chamber in that gun was holding a real, live bullet.

His mental ravings stopped as he heard more people and he noticed that they were just about to disembark on the dock to Primum Town. Keeping a map of Maiestas in his jacket, he made his way over to the dock. People avoided him, as knocking into him would mean they would get pushed aside like a ragdoll due to his sheer height and weight and their own momentum, and he wouldn't even have to lift a finger. He probably wouldn't even notice.

As he was standing in line, he heard someone yelling, and then saw someone getting thrown out. One of the Enforcers was holding a Max Potion. He was glad he didn't take anything with him besides what he could use for survival. He waited for a little longer, the line inching further and further to the gate of Primum Town. He looked about at his surroundings and scoffed at the grandeur of the street, knowing full well that atrocities celebrated and innocents suffered behind this merry facade. Who were they trying to fool anyway? Well, apparently everyone and even himself for a time. At least he always doubted them, so disappointment and horror didn't crush him as bad as the hapless souls who probably lost their lives here, if not just their savings.

After some time had passed, he finally made it to the booth where he would get his card. The stoic look he had on his face almost seemed to make the lady's smile falter as she looked up at him. Was it in fear? Maybe it was awe. He didn't know. All he knew was she returned back to her smile and started to talk in her high, grating voice. Who hired this lady to be around people? Her voice is insufferable to listen to.

"If you would like a Trainer's License, give me your name, age, birthplace, the Pokémon you will be using, and 2,000 PokéDollars. I can already tell your gender, so there really isn't any need for you to repeat that," the lady, doing her best for her voice not to sound like she's scared, attempted to raise the price.

The large man wasn't having it. His face changed from stoic to menacing, as he glared right through her, as if he didn't even see her, but her soul instead. He knew they raised the price. It wasn't that hard to hear the other people ask for 1,500 PokéDollars from the other side of the port. He looked over to the man who asked for 1,500 PokéDollars from a kid and then looked back to the lady, who also shared what he was gazing at and then back to his seemingly soulless eyes. She nervously chuckled and mumbled "1,500 PokéDollars is fine."

Cracking a smile and startling the lady by doing so, he calmly told her his name in his deep voice and thick Sinnohan accent. "Victor Vladimirovich. V-I-C-T-O-R. V-L-A-D-I-M-I-R-O-V-I-C-H. Male. 37 years old. Born and raised in Snowpoint City, Sinnoh. My Pokémon Partner is Deino. And here is your money, ma'am," the large man handed her 1,500 PokéDollars, with the woman quickly putting in his information, taking the money, and hastily giving him his card. Smiling, he thanked her again before leaving towards the security check.

A little later after he clipped his Trainer's License to his dog tags, he noticed someone was shuffling in the next line over and the nervous man hesitantly held out two PokéBalls. The security guards said he could only have one, as more than one was cheating and nobody wanted to fight against a cheater. The man indignantly denied anyone taking his Pokémon away from him, but the security guards grabbed and threw him aside, where one of the Enforcers took the yelling and kicking kid away from the gate. Clenching his jaw, all he could do was stand there as the three bastards grinned wickedly. His attention came to when there was a slight tap on his back, and he looked forward to see that there was quite a sizeable gap between him and the next person in line. He closed the gap and then it was suddenly his turn.

He took off his jacket and pulled all of his pockets out, including the pockets in his pants. He even took off his combat boots to show them that nothing was hiding inside them and showed them that he only had one PokéBall on him. Impressed, the guards didn't charge him for he was very helpful and they didn't have to do anything. Victor quickly put on his articles of clothing, put back his items, put his dingy PokéBall on his Trainer Belt, and left the gate.

It was during this time that he saw a kid with not one, not two, but four Pokémon out of their PokéBalls. What was this kid doing? Looking over, he could see some leftover sparkles. Was this kid... Performing in the street? This was no time to celebrate, this was war. He overheard the same kid asking a girl if she would like to do a mock battle before they even step into the next route. Was this kid serious, bold, or stupid? He wasn't taking this seriously at all. The girl was right, she had more sense than most of the kids here. Looking about, he spotted several other kids, most of them not even reaching the age of 21. He looked sadly at them all, as it would be horrible if their lives were cut short by this challenge, but it was their choice.

He walked up to the quartet (but not realizing the poncho lady was there) and projected his voice to the three, but mostly at the performer kid. "Goggle girl is right. Don't waste your Pokémon's strength. Showing them off is a sign of weakness. No one wants to be viewed as weak or stupid in a death trap like this. Don't treat this as a game. Treat this as a fight for your survival. This place is ten times more dangerous than being in a warzone."

His dog tags jingled and were now accompanied by his Trainer's License, which were now out of his tank top and displayed for all to see from when he was at the security gate. He looked about to see if he could help any other children who were nearby. Two boys, one looking like he has been in the slums for all of his life and another newcomer, who was now conversing with the dead child since they seemed to have accidentally bumped into each other. There was a kid in front of him with only three fingers on one hand, the goggle girl, the performer kid, and then he noticed there was a girl with a poncho. Did she say something about an interview? Oh, good grief. He sighed as he looked at the poncho-wearing girl, hoping to talk some sense into her.

"What interview? This place is a trap to obtain as much money as possible from hapless visitors and hopefully have the wilderness kill them before they realize this place is a shit hole. If you don't believe me, then don't bother me."

His expression changed from grief to stone again as he walked off towards the PokéMart, ignoring anyone that tried to stop him. Sighing, he walked in and ducked under the door frame so he wouldn't bang his forehead. He found 5 PokéBalls, but didn't need anything else. He can use the land to his advantage. It was 400 PokéDollars each, so 400 times 5 was... 2,000 PokéDollars. He fished his money out and gave the clerk the money for the PokéBalls. The clerk looked too afraid to attempt to converse with the imposing figure before him or to even raise the price on him. Leaving with some ammunition for gathering Pokémon, he left the store to go back to the group of kids (which he made sure to remember their faces at least) at the foot of The Chittering Wood. Hopefully, they didn't take off without him. They would most likely suffer out there, as the map shows that The Chittering Wood was at least a couple days journey to the next town. Luckily, it was daylight out, but they only had several hours left before sundown.
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The silence seemed to overwhelm the other male; who's shifting gaze seemed all too intrusive for Keon's liking. Why was this dude looking at him like that? What was so interesting to him?

The opposite male was tall, not so absolutely benign or naive like the other trainers. With a single ear ring, like the type that a teenage by would get in rebellion against his parents, and eyes that give away how hard he is scrambling through his brain, the guy still looked like he wouldn't survive very long in this place. Keon's mind wandered, but he made sure to keep his stony gaze locked on the other boy- pressuring him even more to get his words out. How hard could it be? This kid really thought he was all that? Thought that he could take on an entire region, when he had trouble muttering a few simple words? Anger. A sort of indignation built up inside of Keon, boiling as the silence went on. It was so painful, and the young male couldn't understand why. Perhaps because he almost saw himself in this bumbling idiot- perhaps he felt helpless as he knew this stranger would soon experience the cruelty of this world. He knew that, at the very least, this poor kid was about to know what suffering really was- and Keon, so big and bad, couldn't help him at all.

You look... The first words to slip the boy's lips, clearly weren't intentional. At any rate, they were annoying. Keon's clear impatience manifested in a shift in his cold gaze, narrowing into the boy's soul; slicing through his thoughts. He stopped. Part of Keon wished he would continue. What all did he see? It had been a while since Keon had even given the slightest thought to what he looked like- he was still human, surely. But, did he really look the same: would he be able to recognize himself? Another string of words, cut short by the other boy's self. Like he was battling himself to get something out; one part of him eager to create something while the other part of him fears the results of creation. Pokemart? Keon raised a brow, if there was an opposite to curious- that would be Keon's expression. This boy was not only dull, but pitifully painful to be around. He wanted, if anything, to get away. To ignore this bum and continue on. But, somewhere along the lines of the last few years of his life, Keon lost the ability to fight for what he wants. He learned a tactic to get through life without any pain or sorrow: and it was as simple as nodding your head. These things, feelings which Keon had tried so hard to forget. Feelings which, try as he might to suppress, are encouraged by the trainers around him. Keon didn't really know what he wanted, but he knew talking to this guy brought back feelings which he had worked hard to conceal. He knew that he wouldn't be able to hold it much longer. He held his stoic wall, but for how long?

A sentence, eventually. Had it been an hour? A minute? Less? It felt like entirety. How many trainers had left, already? Was Keon already behind? He couldn't shake the feeling that this kid was holding him back- and yet he couldn't get himself to budge. As the trainer opposite to him finally managed to make a coherent sentence- the words flowed, like a stream, through Keon's brain. Almost melodic, yet chunky and upsettingly firm. What was this guy's problem? Keon didn't flinch, his mouth slowly opened; but only to let out a breath. After another moment of tranquility, Keon spoke. "I don't think you understand." his words were harsh, not at all even mentioning anything that the other male had previously stated.

"I don't like you at all. How we contacted each other is irrelevant, our encounter should have been brief. And you're a damned fool for even suggesting that you and I had a similar plan, let alone think that perhaps we could discourse such plans together.Sorry to burst your bubble, pal- but this isn't the fairy tale, team adventure story that your mother reads you before bed time." Keon turned, for the first time, away from the male. He let out a low sigh, muttering to himself before continuing "How much money do you have?" Assuming that he did have enough money to purchase supplies to get him through Chittering Woods; perhaps this kid could really make it. Whether Keon didn't have the nerve to leave him behind, or if he really did figure it was beneficial to have such an ally- his personality shifted slightly. We went from irritated to desperate, but with only his eyes could one tell. "The Mart's that way... don't get suckered into spending all your money there; these rats will drain you dry before you even start your journey." with a finger pointed towards the decrepit building, Keon's gaze was distant, as if he were trying to relay the message to someone else. "Don't let your guard down. Maybe I'll see you on the other side." Keon muttered before slumping slightly; as if telling the other trainer that he was done.
When she’d walked up to the people gathering around the performance Vee hadn’t expected the only response to her question to be form an older man; who’d only joined the gathering moments after her. Hearing the mature voice speaking to her she turned to face the newcomer. Straightening herself and gazing intently into the man’s eyes; an uncomfortable attempt at expressing interest. Respecting those older than you; just as her mom had thought her. Sadly, her mom didn’t account for Vee not being the brightest bulb in the box. If anything she’d be assumed weird; instead of interested.

The words of the man fell on deaf ears as they clashed with Vee’s naïveté; still believing this was part of the procedure of being invested in. Yet, before she could so much as formulate a response to the man’s less-than-kind statement, the stranger walked off. Leaving Vee with a momentary puzzled expression as she glanced at the others still remaining in the little gathering. “He sure seemed bothered about something. Maybe we can help him?” She suggested, speaking in a collective ‘we’ despite not having shared a single word with the crowd.

But, apparently the man’s departure wasn’t very lasting and within a short time he approached the group once more; to Vee’s delight. “Sir! Over here!” She called out at full volume, waving her arm eagerly above her head; oblivious to the scene she was making of herself. “You seem bothered, can we help?”
The small psychic type curiously eyed the berries, eventually absorbing one of them into her mass. It began to dissolve inside, and the Pokémon made a small, happy expression. She rubbed against the Snover, seemingly in an expression of gratitude. She turned curiously at the newcomers, however. She floated back towards and behind Maxine as they approached.

One of them a girl around the group's age, covered in a colourful silk coat. She said something about 'interviews'; probably here for business. A bit young, but this is Maeistis. The other, an older man, looked a bit... grumpy. At least serious. The younger girl went after him after he berated her- but seemed to be attempting to help calm him down. Interesting. Both didn't seem like optimal partners, but Maxine would take what he could get.

"Hey, calm down." He replied, motioning to the new girl. "We're all heading through the Woods, right?" Mito, at his side, nodded the best it could. "Let's all introduce ourselves, then we can head out. It's getting dark soon. I'm Maxine, call me Triple, and this is Mito."


Previously Ampharos' Dragon Blood
"Hello! I'm Neo, and this is Ari," Neo said as he pointed to his partner. Now we're turning into a fivesome, aren't we? "To answer your question, Vee, I don't know about the rest of us, but I'm just here as a normal trainer." As Neo watched Mito absorb a berry, a sight he had never seen before, he said "the more the merrier! Welcome to the 'club,' haha! Also, I'm glad you enjoyed my performance. You're right, Krista and Mystery Man. Performing is probably bad for me to do here, and so are practice-battles, even though I did buy some potions. Sorry, it's an old habit from Hoenn." Neo looked at the group of people and realized how many of them there are. Maxie, Mito, Krista, Snover, Vee, Mystery Man, himself, and Ari. I was wrong. We're not a fivesome, we're an eightsome! There are so many of us, but that means that when I mess up, I'll get criticized more over it. Okay, no more self-deprecating jokes. "Are we all ready to go now? I think we are! Alright, then! Let's go!"
The fellow trainer was rather relentless in telling him, straight up, what was wrong with him. Not that it truly hurt Arte's feelings. If Arte felt anything, it was frustration. And not because he insulted him, but because he was definitely right. If he was insulted in any way, it was at himself for continually digging his heels in and going down these trainwreck paths when literally every other brain cell in his head was pointing him in the other way.

But the dreary teenager's demeanor seemed to change, from annoyance to pity. Advice, at least what seemed like it, came out of the guy's mouth. Pointed him in the direction of the mart. A faded blue roof and Pokéball sign stood out, and a beleaguered worker was working on wiping away some graffiti from the words "PokéMart". No wonder he didn't notice it. Well, he still should have noticed it. But apparently, if it wasn't screamed in Arte's face he didn't notice it.

But what pity the boy had for Arte soon faded. His body slumped back to it's original state. Uncaring. Clearly this guy had been through a lot. And Arte didn't need to continue being one of his problems. "Right, right." That wasn't exactly what he wanted to say. "Sorry for...that. I...Nevermind, nevermind." He didn't need to explain himself. It was time for him to get out of there. "Thanks. Yeah. Thanks." The last words he had in that exchange. Didn't he ask how much money he had?...Sometimes he amazed himself at how he could be so oblivious.

He entered the mart, a bell jangling as he entered. He noticed many of the windows had bars covering them- spiderwebs intertwined between them. Unlike the clerks at the welcome desk, this clerk did nothing to hide their misery. Hand upon their face, tired eyes looking forward. Similar to the windows, they sat behind a sheet of plastic and bars to protect themselves. Clearly they had one too many run ins with a nasty thief in the store.

Arte went about obtaining his supplies. Ludicrously expensive, though. 400 for a Potion, 400 for a Pokéball, 200 for some Pokémon food...And he assumed things would only get pricier from here. Just two Potions and two Pokéballs would nearly drain him of half his cash. He recalled the words of the dead eyed young man, when his eyes briefly stopped looking so gaunt. "...Don't get suckered into spending all your money...these rats will drain you dry before you start your journey." Assuming he wasn't trying to screw Arte over- and Arte would like to believe that -He'd take his word for the moment.

He decided to purchase three potions, two Pokéballs. That'd total 1800P- leaving him with a stable 1200P. While catching more Pokémon was alluring, the potions would be more overall useful. Sugar would likely end up injuring himself a few times. And any new ones Arte picked up would be easily patched up too. It would also probably not be good to attract any Pokémon with the food yet. It could put a target on him.

As he put his purchases on the counter, the clerk spoke in his same tone. "That'll be 2000P, please." 2000? He swore he did the math right...

"I...isn't it...1800?"

"2000. Look kid, I ain't got all day. Just pay up."

Arte couldn't help but feel scammed as he passed over the notes. The man counted through them. "...This is 1800. C'mon kid, just-"

"I am sure, alright? I did the math, it's 1800, but I still gave you 2000. And now you ask for more?"

Arte knew this because he handed over two 1000P bills. It would be hard to give someone the wrong cost when it was completely under it. The clerk had stopped caring so much, they were trying to scam him in the most pitiful way he'd ever seen. The clerk only sighed in response, putting the money into the register. He pulled out 200P from the change drawer- his "tip", and put it in his own pocket. "Have a nice day." Was all the clerk told Arte, pushing his stuff back towards him.

It was a bit frustrating to have someone blatantly steal your money, but he needed the supplies more than 200P. Arte probably wasn't intimidating enough or convincing enough to get the original price back. Oh well. He put his goods safely away in his satchel, glared at still bored clerk, and left the mart, the bell jangling again.

He had supplies, so there was no reason to dally. The Chittering Wood awaited ahead. It was the first obstacle, so certainly couldn't be that bad, right...?...No. The woods were the first thing separating the strong willed from the weak. If he kept a low profile and was quick, he might've been able to cross the woods by evening. That was when the woods "came to life", or in other words all the packs of hungry bugs began waking up. Of course, might've.

Arte was never quite so lucky.
Right. Sorry. Thanks. Despite the boy’s unclear disposition, his message came through to Keon. What an idiot. He would be eaten alive. Keon huffed indignantly, he wasn’t a babysitter- he gave the kid a warning. Part of Keon wondered if it would have been simpler to just pick-pocket him, himself. At any rate, the sun was steadily lowering; reaching down to kiss the sea; and Keon knew, better than most, that it was time to start moving. Pretty soon, the chittering woods would grow dangerous and scary. The scatterbug and weedle that once pose little threat across the route would morph against the darkness, Beedrill and Galvantula would soon come out to feed.

Soon, the stumbling trainer was gone. Now out of sight, he certainly wasn’t out of mind. Perhaps Keon was truly just very impressionable, but the taller male’s expression flashed in Keon’s vision as he turned away from the pokemart and towards his next destination. How many people were stripped, daily, of their precious dreams and spirits.

Silence fell from the few who entered the woods. Dark, barren trees loomed overhead- leafless and taunting as they refused the entrance of sunlight. As Keon took a few steps towards the entrance of the route, he watched the trainers around him. Some were in awe, unable to fathom the risky adventure that lay ahead of them- others already regretted their decisions. Still, none of them realized what truly was going to happen in these woods. The type of experience you can only understand through living it. The type of fear that would soon be shot through these kid’s veins as it once did to young Keon’s. Keon, now, looked at these woods with dead eyes. Figuring you could only be beaten so much, Keon didn’t flinch at the face of the maze ahead of him. He did not jump like the others, when a Cacnea scurried from one bush to another. Keon was the first, from the crowd of trainers, to take a step into the woods. The fallen leaves crunched under his foot, clearly alerting all the pokemon who created a melody of rustles form all the surrounding trees. After a second step, Keon felt the excitement of everyone behind him: It was safe! Like a herd of startled tauros, the group of mixed ages rushed into the forest- waving their arms and attempting to get as far as they could before having to encounter a wild pokemon. Now, Keon stayed behind. Maybe those fools would clear the way for him, make his job a whole lot easier.

With a soft grunt, Keon detached the a small pokeball from his waistband. The only thing he owned. He didn’t have extra pokeballs or potions like some of the other trainers, it was just him and the creatures shoved inside it’s ball. Some would go as far as creating a relationship with their pokemon; claiming it has a personality and they’ve created a bond. As far as Keon is concerned on the matter, his pokemon is a utility. A tool that would help him succeed. Pressing a firm finger against the button on the ball, a moment passed for the sphere opened and shot a red beam onto the floor- from their, a small Shieldon materialized. “Arthur, I don’t know if you heard all of those things I said about you while you were in that ball. But, I’m counting on you, now, to get us out of here safely.” Keon stated bluntly. The pokemon gave a roar in response, grinning confidently and stomping in place. Yeah, Keon named the thing. He did so sort of randomly, deciding that Shieldon was a stupid name for a pokemon with a shield on its face. It didn’t mean he had any affinity for the rock/steel type, he was doing it all for practical reasons.

It had been only a few minutes in, Arthur leading with dramatic steps, and Keon began to lose track of time. The only light source was the sun that slipped through cracks between the shadows of the trees, and even that was difficult to be able to tell anything from. Still at the beginning of the path, Keon nodded- it had begun.
As Victor arrived at the group of kids, he heard the silk-wearing lady, who was inquiring about the interviews beforehand, motioned and called him over. If he was aware of how much noise she was making at the moment, he would have probably clenched his jaw. Taking a deep breath, he calmed himself down, as he didn't want to snap at the poor kids, who didn't deserve it and would be through more hardships later on in the journey... If they make it out of Chittering Wood alive. He looked about, hoping no Enforcer or something of the like heard his rant before he left for the PokéMart and he focused his attention on the kids, who were now introducing themselves. He looked over to the two kids who were nearby, but they weren't there anymore. One of them was already at the edge of the woods and the other kid was coming back from the PokéMart. His attention went back to the kids, and he introduced himself.

"My name is Victor. I hail from Snowpoint City, Sinnoh. I have been traveling and surviving out in the wilds with nothing but my knife. If any of you need anything, ask me. I can lend any tips I can give you to survive out there. We all need as much help as we can to get through this first route," cracking a smile, he tried his best to be helpful and supportive, a stark contrast to his behavior before he left for some supplies.

Trying to get the names of everyone, he got Triple and Mito, as they were the easiest. He could remember Ari better than Neo, but that was because Ari made sense with what Pokémon it could become. He still hadn't gotten the interview girl's name, but would probably get it later. He still didn't know the goggle girl's name, but was happy to know she had a Pokémon he was familiar with and quite fond of. Looking over at the forest in front of them, he scowled as he could hear the bugs coming alive. Kids were starting to pour in. Foolish. He could probably survive out there, but he didn't know the potential dangers that this forest could dish out, and it seemed that all the bugs wanted a piece of everyone and their Pokémon coming in.

He pulled out a dingy and scratched up PokéBall and the Pokémon spilled out of the ball in bright, red light. A dark dino-looking Pokémon hopped about and growled happily. Not seeing very well but hearing the chitter of the bugs, he hopped about excitedly that they were going to have some fun. Chuckling at his friend's enthusiasm, he knelt down and snapped his finger. The Deino, hearing his trainer behind him, turned about in a full circle before turning towards him and tackling him, his tail wagging. Smiling a huge, genuine smile, Victor patted his friend's head and told him that they were going through a dangerous route, and he should keep his guard up, to which the Deino nodded with his tongue hanging out.

He got up, and his little friend kept his ear out for Victor's footsteps, so he could follow him closely. Victor, for anyone that cared, introduced his friend. "This is my Deino. His name is Khaydro." (OOC: Key-droo)

BIC: The little Deino waved his hand out for everyone, apparently really liking the attention he was feeling, even if there was no one paying attention. There were bruises and scuff marks on the Deino's rough skin, but most of the wounds it had endured had all scarred, leaving it a more battle-hardened creature than one would assume from the average Deino, and these creatures were usually covered in scuff marks and wounds from tackling everything out of curiosity.
Krista had stayed silent for most of the time, observing everything that was currently happening. She noticed out of the corner of her eye that more and more trainers were finally entering the forest and soon her little group would be the last to go. Her emerald eyes shifted quickly back to her group when the older man came back. Neo had just shot out a quick apology and Vee seemed to worry slightly over the man but luckily he had come back quick enough. She allowed her attention to slowly melt back in the conversation before her ears peaked, hearing something very interesting.

"My name is Victor. I hail from Snowpoint City, Sinnoh." Krista's smile grew wide and the moment the man finished introducing himself and his pokemon, she immediately started speaking. "You are from Snowpoint City!? So am I!" She grinned and fiddled her goggles again, quickly becoming a habit when her excitement grows. She glanced down to Snover who looked equally excited to meet someone who was familiar with her hometown and a million questions began to raise in her mind. Where did he live? Did he rock climb or ski? Who was his family, maybe she knew them!

However she mentally scolded herself. Questions could come later. In fact, she figured it was time to go. There were a couple enforcers and citizens that were beginning to eye them strangely and she was feeling a slight discomfort from the stares. She decided to voice her opinions to her new group of friends/allies.

"Maybe we should walk and talk guys. Not to be a downer but this port city feels a little off somehow. The people keep giving us this predatory stare...kinda like a wild pokemon does." And it was true. This glint was usually only found in people such as team rocket or galactic. It was an odd vibe that she would gladly get away from.


Previously Ampharos' Dragon Blood
"My name is Victor. I hail from Snowpoint city, Sinhoh." So his name is Victor. Whoa, and his Deino looks super-cool! "Thanks for telling us your name. I don't want to have to call you 'Mystery Man' the whole time, so it's nice to meet you, Victor and Khaydro," Neo said. Wow, so Krista and Victor come from the same place? Talk about an awesome coincidence! "Anybody else going to join our group? No? Okay then!"

"The people here keep giving us this predatory stare... kinda like a wild pokemon does," said Krista. Neo looked around and he quickly sensed it too. It made him nervous and impatient. "You're right. I've seen that look on a girl who tried to summon a beast for the wrong reasons, and she ended up being evil." (OOC: Zinnia from ORAS Delta Episode) "The only problem is that the forest is 'coming to life' and that means the bugs are swarming, doesn't it? We don't have enough repel for all of us or any fire-types to use Smokescreen and keep out the bugs, and we might not survive a Parasect group or Beedrill swarm encounter if they feel mad."
At the mention of the repel and swarms, Maxine's eyes lit up. He tapped his friend and motioned forwards. At the direction, her eyes begun to glow and a light, shimmering shield envelops the group. A hexagonal pattern formed, connecting the glowing spots around the humans and Pokémon. "Protect. She can't keep it up for long, but it'll work in a pinch." Maxine stated, the barrier dropping.

The people seemed to be talking a lot. His suspicion about Krista was correct- and, in fact, there were two people from the same area. Perhaps they know each other? The silver-haired boy's mind jumped left and right, not sure what to say or ask. He absentmindedly nodded to suggestions and barely listened. Finally, butting in to whatever conversation was going on, he blurted out a suggestion.

"We should get going. The bugs are just going to get more anxious, and it's getting dark."

(OOC: sorry for the short post, I'm busy)


Previously Ampharos' Dragon Blood
"I agree with Triple," (OOC: Is that what I call him now? ;-; "we should go, now! Mito, that Protect was impressive, but even with it, we need to go!" As Neo ran ahead into the forest, he realized that he forgot to let his Pokemon out! "Go, Ari, Salia, Surski, Bloom! Come on everybody, let's go!" As Neo tromped on through the Woods, he assumed the others were behind him as he ran forwards and was confronted with "a Joltik! Let's catch it! Now, Surski! Use Silver Wind to distract it!" The Bug-Type happily obliged, and the Joltik was surrounded by a moving green wind. "Bloom, use Fairy Pulse!" Floette obeyed, and a pink sphere turned into a small pink beam headed to the Joltik! "Salia and Ari, finish it off with Round!" The two Pokemon used Round and multicolored sound waves fainted the small Bug. "Now, go, Pokeball!" A Heal Ball trapped the Pokemon, and Neo lied in wait, seeing if he had caught the new Pokemon!

Party: Ari (Swablu) Status: None Salia (Roselia) Status: None Surski (Surskit) Status: None Bloom (Floette)
HP: 80/80 HP: 93/93 HP: 84/84 HP: 91/91

Joltik Status: Still being caught
HP: Unknown
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Looking over at the goggle girl, Victor earnestly smiled at her. Well, wasn't she excited? He nodded towards Neo, who made him smile a bit more when he mentioned calling him 'Mystery Man' for the entire adventure. He replied to Neo with a "likewise", before the hairs on the back of his head began to stand up on end.

The predatory stare of some of the enforcers and other workers were starting to bother him. Not like he was actually anxious or scared, but more irritated by the feeling of being preyed upon, as he had been through actual Pokémon hunting him down and he had gotten scars from past adventures when he walked up to the wrong territory. He saw some slight movement from Maxine, or Triple as he preferred to be called, and a shimmering, protective light enveloped them, as his Solosis expended some energy. Protect. Something that might be of use for them would be his Khaydro's Fire Fang. Hopefully, that should be enough.

Hearing the goggle girl expressing her worries and also hearing Triple's worries about the bugs, the large man nodded with a grunt and briskly began to walk towards the forest, but keeping an eye out for the other children he practically adopted into his group. He wanted to make sure they get through this forest alive.

He watched as Neo darted forward and let all of his Pokémon out as he began to travel through, and then he began attacking a Pokémon. He looked behind him to note that most of the enforcers and their coworkers were now eyeing the group suspiciously. If they put their suspicions out to the next town, they all might be in trouble.

Victor walked into the woods and stepped over and around bushes and people, respectively. He needed a Pokémon that could help with fighting off Deino's weakness to Fairy-Type moves, as well as Khaydro's other weaknesses. That was when he heard some electrical buzzing nearby. Looking through the trees, he found a clump of Nincada swarming over something that was electrifying them - to no use. Wanting to help the mystery Pokémon out, he snapped his fingers and told Khaydro to use Fire Fang.

Hearing the snap, the little dino Pokémon growled excitedly and, upon hearing the mad buzzing and electrifying sounds of a group nearby, he began charging towards it, his mouth agape and his teeth becoming cloaked in flames. The Nincada jumped off of the floating eel-like Pokémon, and the mystery Pokémon flew up into the air, just avoiding the Deino. Growling and looking around, trying to find the buzzing and the Nincada noises, he didn't notice there was an electrical buzz happening above him. Not wanting to let the Pokémon paralyze or hurt his Deino, Victor threw a Poké Ball, to which it contacted with the now startled floating Electric-Type, and the ball swallowed her up. the ball shook violently... And broke. Apparently, the Pokémon had a bit more fight in her left.

Sighing, he didn't want to waste any more of his Poké Balls, so he called out for Khaydro to use his Fire Fang and sniff out the Nincada. Khaydro's fangs glowed brightly and were cloaked with fire again, and he wildly ran around, trying to chomp the nearest Nincada. The Nincada kept jumping about, taunting the poor dino. Growling at the fact that the Nincada were practically making a fool out of his little dino, he found a rock and threw it at a Nincada, hitting the bark of the tree above it. The Nincada looked at him and was about to pounce toward him, when the Deino finally landed his attack and bit down, showing no sign that he was going to let go. He shook his head about, and then dropped his prey. The little Nincada didn't want to move after that, and the other Nincada tried to pounce the Deino and use their varying moves, from Slash to Bug Bite. Victor told Khaydro to use Dragon Rush, and a blue, draconic aura cloaked his body and injured the Nincada that were right on top of him. Khaydro then tackled several of these Nincada, forcing some to run while others jumped up in the trees to watch the Deino and his trainer closely.

The little Tynamo looked about, amazed at the Deino's power and wanted to show her gratitude to the human who protected her. Smiling and cheering happily, she rushed towards the large man. Victor wasn't so sure whether this thing was going to use Spark or Tackle. It was then that the speedy little guy hit him square in the chest, but it wasn't a hard hit. In fact, the thing was showing affection towards him and then spun around Victor happily. This Tynamo seemed to be a little different than the other ones here. She must have been from a different area and somehow got lost and ended up here or someone abandoned it. The last option seemed likely, as she took up to Victor quite well.

Khaydro was quite confused as he heard a lot of strange noises coming from around his trainer and electricity buzzing around him. Cocking his head, Victor saw the confusion and just chuckled. He told Khaydro that they made a new friend. He took out another Poké Ball and bumped the little Tynamo on the head. The Tynamo made a happy squeal as she got absorbed into the ball, and the ball shook and then clicked. Smiling, he looked at the ball that the Tynamo had been captured in and said: "I'll name you, Milashka."

He almost felt a buzz of recognition from his Poké Ball and he chuckled as he put the Poké Ball on his belt. Maybe he could find some berries here and help heal his Pokémon, among the other people here.
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Krista gave a small relief smile as everyone began to move on to the forest. Seeing the move protect being used let her mind rest a bit at ease. While difficult to use in quick succession, it was basically a get out of jail free card. Something that could block nearly any attack. She was glad to have Mito on her side at the moment. Brush, as if reading her thoughts, looked happy at the fact that they had a good defense to come.

Upon making it into the forest, multiple people from her small group immediately branched out and battling their own encounters of their own. Speaking of which...

She heard a cry to her left, a noise that almost seemed recognizable...where had she heard that sound before? Her brief status of confusion quickly wiped away the moment she saw the Pokemon that was charging her head on. "A Kricketot!" A red and black bug Pokemon with a funny collar like facial detail that hid it's mouth. They are commonly found in sinnoh in the south and spread about a bit. The blue haired girl recognized it's appearance and cry from one of the many Pokemon nature shows that played on TV. She smirked as Brush stepped in front of her, his eyes narrowing as they locked onto the threat of his master. Confidence let itself into her mind as a rush of adrenaline pumped through her veins, a big smile breaking out on her face. "Brush! Go!" She told the Grass/Ice Pokemon.

The kricketot, being spotted, slid to a stop and glared at the Pokemon blocking it's path from the human. It was silent for a few seconds before another cry from the bug signaled an attack, it lunging forward and screeching. The effect that it had on Snover was immediate, him covering his ears at the intense growl that erupted from the small bug type. While the pitch mildly effected Krista, she was quick to recover and decided to unleash her first move. Now, Krista wasn't always the smartest...but she knew the basics of battling and knew it was useless to attack a bug type with grass. They would just eat right through it...literally!

Therefore with that in mind, she shot her hand forward and aimed at the red and black creature. "Brush! Hit em with a powder snow!" With that, Snover immediately lashed out, his arms moving in small circles as if gathering the air into his hands. The air around him turned misty and chilly as the visible frost could be seen flowing from the move. With a cry of his own, Snover shot the gale of cold wind and small powdered snow into the face of Kricketot. The poor bug was blinded slightly by the snow that hit it's face and Krista took the advantage to issue another command. "C'mon, follow up with a tackle!"

Snover bull rushed and slammed right into the opposing Pokemon and Krista smirked, whipping out a pokeball and chucking it at the now passed out Kricketot. Three shakes and a click was all she needed to know that she had gained a new friend on this journey. "All right! Good job Brush." Brush, being one who loved attention, puffed his chest out as if to say 'no problem. That was easy.' The teen walked over to the newly sealed Pokeball and held it in her hand. "I will name you...Kirkwall." She nodded with confidence and slipped it on her belt. Returning Snover to his Pokeball for a little rest, she ran back to the others to see how well they had done in capturing a pokemon of their own.


Previously Ampharos' Dragon Blood
Shaking, shaking... Will I catch it? Shake, shake, shake, Ding! I did it!

C'mon, come on, please... Yes! I think I'll name you Bit-Byte! How does that sound? Now, come out, Bit-Byte! Welcome to the team," Neo said excitedly as he introduced his newest team member to his party. He quickly sent out Bit-Byte, who was healed by the Heal Ball he picked up at the Pokemart. "Now, this is Ari, Salia, Surski, and Bloom! They're going to be your new team! Now, do you know how to use the move Electroweb?" Bit-Byte nodded and then jumped up into the air. Quickly, yellow strands came together to form a glowing orb, then the orb was fired. Suddenly, the glowing flash expanded into a web that hit the ground and electrified it, though the land rendered the electricity useless. "That's a beautiful move, now would you mind using, say, Spark?" The tiny Electric/Bug-type obliged, and a small discharge came out of the bug as he tackled a tree. Quickly, the electric charge returned to power up the tackle and stop Bit-Byte from harming itself. "Great! Now, why don't we head back and see if our friends have caught more friends, too! I'm glad you're part of the team, Bit-Byte," Neo said as the five headed back to the entrance of the forest looking for Krista, Maxie, Victor, and Vee.
Old trees intertwined and their sparse foliage shaded the woods. So this was the Chittering wood...Arte had been wandering it since at least noon, Sugar loyally perched upon his shoulder.

The Chinchilla was quiet, his eyes nervously darting about. The evening was upon them, and the Minccino's could sense an overwhelming amount of Pokémon in hiding. Asleep, or waiting to pounce? The Minccino wasn't sure, clinging ever tighter to the oblivious Arte.

Orange light flickered through the canopy, the occasional Spearow or Pidgey flapping away. Arte considered confronting one...but no. He didn't necessarily need to waste Sugar's strength on situations that could be avoided. He'd focus on reaching the city first. Then he could train and search for Pokémon in a safer proximity. It seemed sound to him. If things got too dicey he could retreat to the Center, right?


But as Arte walked, he heard the namesake of the would. A humming of insects, coming to life. Sugar was frightened- climbing to the top of Arte's head. "Sugar, it's only a couple bugs. The nasty ones are later." Unlike the dead eyed boy, the Minccino couldn't exactly criticize his stilted speech. Y'know. Cause it couldn't talk. And clearly, Arte was also fiercely underestimating the woods, even at the evening hours.

He hadn't been looking exactly where he was walking. How the grasses faded into crumbled earth, and trees looked even more barren. Arte hadn't even realized how odd this was until he felt the dirt beneath him shifting.

He shifted his glance down- as a Nincada burst from the earth. "...Just one?"...He spoke too soon. Another Nincada followed. And another. And another. More and more poured out from the hole, soon crawling over one another, in a twisted desperate race.

...For Arte.

"You gotta be kidding me."

The closest of the horde hopped at him, as Arte turned tail- they clung to his, crawling and biting. Arte didn't stop, which was yet another shortcoming of the young man, as a small incline caused him to tumble. The cicada Pokémon that were plaguing him were thrown off by the rolling, but not all of them. Not to mention, a yelping Minccino following them. After what seemed like too long, they came to a stand still. "...That hurt...Sugar?"

The Minccino squeaked out a reply, scurrying over to the young man. Arte didn't take long to pick himself up, dust himself off.

But then he heard something. Grunts from something that wasn't him or the little chinchilla.

He glanced toward his satchel. No doubt the contents had been shaken up, but...could something get into it? He opened up the satchel...

And one last Nincada popped out.

"...Sugar, hit it with a pound."

Arte's words seemed to give the mousy creature the courage to fight. A hit to the unsuspecting bug-type kept it from escaping- perhaps bringing courage of it's own out to fight Sugar. "Don't let up, boy." And so the fluffy Pokémon did not, as Arte searched his satchel. The fall had scattered his stuff, but he didn't come with much in the first place. Ah, he found it.

The Nincada had kicked up mud on poor Sugar in an attempt to defend itself. But it let it's guard down to Arte, tossing a Pokéball at it. It shook thrice, and after what seemed like far too long, luckily captured it.

...Perhaps it wasn't the best investment. Bug types had a habit of topping off rather early in one's journey. Oh well, Arte would make do. "Good work, guy." Once again, Sugar could say little about Arte's speaking. Or rather, nothing. He only squeaked in response, beginning to wipe the mud his new teammate had got on him. "Come on though, let's get out of here."

Arte didn't name the newbie yet. He already was off the path and wasted enough time already. Knowing himself, he'd think of something on the way.
After obtaining a new Pokémon, Victor walked about among the kids as he looked about, making sure everyone was okay. He noticed Neo was figuring out what that little bug had in terms of moves, but he was looking for everyone else. He noticed the boy with a Minccino walk further and further into the woods. It looked like the forest swallowed him whole, and he was hoping he would be fine.

At this time, he found the goggle girl. Khaydro followed him by his ankle obediently as the large man peered from a ways away to see what she was doing. It seemed like she had caught herself another Pokémon. At least she had another creature to protect herself with. He smiled before trailing back to the group. When the goggle girl approached the group, he started talking with her, finding her a better person to talk to that had at least an ounce of sense compared to the rest of the group he was in. "I noticed you were interested to know more about me since we lived in the same city. Was there anything you wanted to know?"
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A Joltik, Tynamo, and Krickitot. The group moved rather quickly, and seemed to be prepping a team already. The Tynamo was specifically interesting- perhaps it was lost from the town? That would make sense. Maxine stuck with the group for a bit, watching and looking for a new partner. Eventually, he head off by himself in order to obtain- well, really anything.

The silver-haired boy grabbed a berry from a bush, taking a large bite. He made sure to keep in eyesight of the main group, just for safety. His partner happily floated along beside him, also absorbing one of the fruits from the bush. Thoughts began to race through Maxine's head about what he could find. A Larvesta would be nice. Heracross could cover the Dark weakness, and any bug would stop others. A Grass/Poison could also help.

Eventually, he noticed a small rustling in a pile of dead plants. A small rock poked out from the top, quickly followed by two small beady eyes. Maxine backed off as a small bug hopped from the pile, letting loose some small chirps. Mito' eyes narrowed, ready for a fight. "A Dwebble. Good enough. Reflect!"

The cellular pokémon produced a circular barrier surrounding itself, a shimmering purple. This barrier wasn't enough to stop the small rock blasted at the Solosis, causing it to tumble back. The bug ran straight at the pokémon, the slashes from it's claws being negated. Maxine called for a Psywave as Mito shot a beam of glimmering energy, causing the Dwebble to roll away. With the extra range, the cell absorbed a bit of energy from her surroundings, letting her recover some energy.

"One more!" Maxine called out. The cell blasted the opponent with a large amount of confusing rays, causing it to slump down, breathing heavily. With a weak underhand toss, an orb impacted the Dwebble, shaking once then dinging. Maxine walked over towards the ball, picking t up and attaching it to his belt. As he walked back towards the group, he began to think of names.
As the pair traveled farther and farther from the safety of the shore; the forest seemed to laugh as it's shadowed engulfed them. Arthur leads with confidence, a bit too enthusiastically as he seemed to hum to himself and sway back and forth between steps. The shield pokemon’s legs were tiny, it gave Keon the ability to keep up with him. But from all the previous traveling, though Keon wouldn’t admit it, the young man was tired and sore. “Hey, Arthur, let up a bit.” Keon groaned at his pokemon, whose optimism was honestly a bit much for the trainer. Arthur turned in his tracks, blinking at Keon. “Don’t give me that dumb look! You’re moving to fast, you’re supposed to be protecting us not playing marching-band.” Keon growled at his pokemon, who sort of slunk back and sighed. Arthur let out a long breath of air, looking up at Keon as if trying to evoke some sort of pity from his master. Keon simply rolled his eyes and continued walking, taking a step over his small companion and leaving Arthur to follow behind him.

A series of playful grunts from behind him went without notice by Keon, it wasn’t until Arthur let out one of his signatures roars that the young trainer became truly irritated and spun around. “What the hell are you doing?” Keon growled as he snapped his head back to focus on Arthur; who, sure enough, wasn’t doing his only job. The small shieldon stood on his hind legs and pawed at a Spinark, the bug type gently bouncing around Arthur and making short chattering noises. Though small and seemingly harmless, where were the others? Bugs traveled in packs, hunting like wolves and feeding on the weak; no way was it just one, small, harmless Spinark.

It seemed that Keon’s realization came too late. A large red figure pounced on Arthur, followed by another and another. The three Araidos, which Keon as sure was larger than normal, buzzed and crawled over one another as if fighting for their meal. Arthur’s squeal caused Keon to jump, it was a horrifying noise. He didn’t recognize the sound at all, but he was all too familiar with fear to not know exactly what was going through his pokemon’s head. Keon, unlike most the other trainers, was not equipped with any pokeballs or potions. He couldn’t risk losing Arthur now. “Arthur, use Protect! Hold on, just a bit longer.” Keon yelled into the mob of flailing bodies, only hoping that his pokemon could make out his command. Quickly turning, Keon’s mind raced. He had to find something. Anything at all, that could help him. He was so helpless, yet again. Helpless to the Maiestas Region, and helpless to his own weakness.

Muttering a curse under his breath. Keon stood stiff as he faced the Ariados. By now, it was clear what was happening in the mass of pokemon. To Keon’s surprise, the little steel type was holding up. Wincing as the group of attackers sprung at his shield over and over again. Keon, now equipped with three large rocks. Or chunks of rock, he wasn’t sure where the came from. Reeling his arm back, Keon flung one of the stone pieces at the group of Ariados. Now, Keon isn’t necessarily a very strong boy. But, luckily for him: bug types have some of the worst defense of earth. His first attack hit one of the long-legged pokemon in the abdomen, it looked up but didn’t even growl. Still, Keon’s second rock- which came rapidly after the first- managed to collapse against one of the pokemon’s head. Suddenly thinking that it wasn’t a great idea, as the Ariados diverted their attention towards the trainer, he stayed very still. Then they all scattered. As if Keon used mean face and really taught them a lesson, the bug types all ran up the closest tree and stayed extremely silent. Arthur, at the first breath of freedom, jumped and ran towards his trainer.

A buzzing suddenly erupted from the canopy of leaves. Keon, who had barely touched his pokemon since he first received the small creature. Scooped Arthur into his arms and formed a small ball on the floor. The young trainer's cold gaze grew wide before he sealed his eyes tightly as a gust of wind bushed his back and he felt a horde of pokemon cross his back. As the woods grew still, Keon let out the breath that he had been holding for some time. It was beedrills, he knew them all too well. They hunted in groups, swooping in randomly and targeting whatever they can find. Luckily, they're stupid. Still, Keon felt bad for whichever trainer ended up as their prey.


Previously Ampharos' Dragon Blood
Closer... Closer... Run! Agh, why am I not running?!

A Beedrill was approaching Neo quickly, and soon the others would follow. The rest of the group had already made it safely, but Neo, being himself, wasn't fast enough. He found himself frozen with fear (or maybe by a String Shot trap.) Quickly, Salia (Roselia) stepped in to help by quickly firing Leech Seed at the ground. Yellow roots imprisoned the Beedrill for a minute, but they quickly cut through it with Twinneedle and then aimed it at Salia. Surski quickly tried to attack from behind with Hidden Power, but it was little more effective than Leech Seed. The Beedrill quickly turned on the poor Pond Skater Pokemon as it frantically tried to hide as Salia watched on in panic. However, it used its leftover strength to summon Sunny Day, as the forest was quickly flooded with light. Then, Synthesis healed it so that the Grass/Poison-type could still battle.

As the other Beedrill approached, one of them had a strange glow to it. Salia quickly used Grass Whistle in an attempt to stop the Bug/Poison Pokemon. Quickly, most of the Bees fell asleep and collapsed on the ground. However, the glowing Bee was out of earshot and quickly charged once the tune stopped. Somehow, Neo, still trapped, was not affected by the strange frequencies of Grass Whistle. "Salia, go! You can do this! I know you can! Go and attack," Neo cried, returning the fainted Surski to its Pokeball. Salia still seemed determined to fight, so Neo, knowing how Salia liked to improvise during battles, focused on struggling free of the String Shot. With all of its might, she fired a Petal Blizzard which was followed by Mega Drain and then Magical Leaf. After this flurry of attacks, the Beedrill was knocked into a nearby tree. As it regained consciousness and flew away, it left a sense of victory and... oh no... two injured Pokemon!

As Neo panicked, he took out some potions and did the best he could to heal Salia, though Surski was past the point of healing. He'd just have to wait until the next city. As he rushed to keep up with the rest of the group, he said to himself "And this, Neo, is why you do the starving period before you explore."

Pokemon: Ari (Swablu) Salia (Roselia) Surski (Surskit) STATUS: Fainted Bloom (Floette) Bit-Byte (Joltik)

OOC: This is compensation for not being active for some time...
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"Do you hear that, Sugar?"

Of course the large eared Minccino heard it- the poor thing had been hearing it, and thing that meant was that whatever it was had been concealing itself to Arte. If Arte hear it now, then it wasn't attempting to hide anymore. And the thing was, it was not just one it. There were three, as a trio of hissing Galvantula descended from a tree.

Arte wasn't entirely unfamiliar with the creatures. Not to say he knew their name off the top of his head, but he remembered seeing them once or twice in a safety presentation at school- which basically amounted to him knowing they were bad news, and that was it. Though as their eyes focused on him and his chinchilla, and their fur began to pop and crackle with electricity, he could get the gist.

He glanced away from the sparking spiders, a heavy looking branch laid to the side. Sugar couldn't take out all of them. He simply wasn't strong enough. But maybe Arte could dissuade them alongside the Minccino. He lugged it up, using it as a blunt club- taking a few swing towards the leering arachnids. "No!" He told the Galvantula pack. "Away! Scat!"

The Galvantula briefly backed away, but they were definitely continuing to encroach on the young man. He started making good on his threats- lightly smacking them with the branch. This still didn't stop them. It deterred them slightly more than his original shouts had, but showed no intents on stopping. So he whacked one really hard. It did stop the one. For a moment. Looked pretty dazed.

Until it hissed, looking very angry. "Ah, crap." Maybe he should of just ran while he could. He felt Sugar dig his paws deeper into his hair, clinging onto Arte like a shield. He...wasn't very useful.

But then? The Galvantulas glared at him for a moment, and quickly scuttled off. Did he spook them off? Did they get spooked by Sugar? Both seemed doubtful. But as Sugar let out a yelp, he realized one other reason they could've run off.

Something bigger showed up.

And Arte turned his head, glancing at a massive mountain of brown fur and anger, a cream colored ring displayed on it's chest. An Ursaring, though Arte himself didn't know the name. Arte said nothing as he swung his makeshift club at the grand beast.

It snapped. The branch broke in two as it slammed into the bear Pokémon. It roared down at the young man and his Minccino, quickly prompting a retreat from Arte.

"Damn it!" This forest venture was far more hectic than he wanted it to be. Second time he was fleeing from something- The Nincada horde had at least lost interest quickly, but this big fella was far less forgiving. He could hear it ripping through the brush, hot in pursuit. Sugar would get destroyed in such a conflict. But what else did he have?

...Oh yeah. His new Nincada buddy.

He couldn't outrun the bear forever. There weren't many other choices.

He clenched the Pokéball that held the second Pokémon he had captured. It was such a little creature, but surely if it had lived out here for a while it had something up it's sleeve. Arte let it out- the bleary eyed digger materializing, looking up at his new trainer. "You! Do...something!" The Ursaring was closing in. The Nincada turned towards it. It hardly even flinched- though possibly it couldn't even really see it. In either case, it did do something.

Let out a high pitched noise. Arte had no idea what it was, but it was awful. He and Sugar struggled through it. But, it seemed the big guy was far more vulnerable to it, roaring and whipping back in what Arte could assume to be pain.

Hopefully that would be enough to make it leave him alone. That was what went through Arte's head as he scooped up his Nincada and ran for the hills. The Ursaring far behind them.

A few moments later, his pace slowed, taking a bit of a breather. "He's...Lost. We lost. Him." The Nincada he clutched looked pretty confused. It was clearly something the new bug would need to get used to. With what limited knowledge the bug possessed..."You...uh, name. How about...Salt? Salt." Sugar and Salt. He thought they were kind of cute names. But cute also didn't get him through the forest. He returned the Nincada.

He needed to keep moving. Salt would make a good trump card, but he couldn't rely on his noises forever. Night was coming ever sooner and the forest continued to wind and twist. Maybe he'd get lucky and find someone else to travel with, at least for the forest.

Of course, as stated. Arte was never that lucky.
“Damn…” Keon panted, sitting upright the young male let out the breath he was holding. Stilling looming over Arthur, who cuddled up close to his trainer, Keon took off his old baseball cap and ran a hand through his hair. The man let both hands drop by his side, the already dirty cap picked up grime from the floor, although Keon didn’t seem much to mind. The pair was not done, not even close; they weren’t going to finish before dark. They’d have to camp the night, preferably with a crowd for protection. With a final huff, the trainer placed his hat back over his scarlet hair and stood. “Come on you wimp, we’ve still got ground to cover.” Keon scoffed at Arthur, the small Shieldon still shivering on the floor. “Wow, where’d your brave little facade go?” Keon groaned as he used his foot to gently push the pokemon, which didn’t budge.

Keon stood for a minute, weighing his options: maybe he could just leave the damn thing and go back to living on the streets. Seemed easier that way. The male languished, digressing with a sigh, he squatted back down beside Arthur. The man’s eyes, as lifeless as ever, twitch with irritation. “It’s not that bad. You’re not dead right?” Keon scoffed, it didn’t phase his companion- but Arthur did look up. The Sheildon blinked, slowly nodding along with Keon’s words, “You’re not dead because I didn't let you die. You know, you’re not alone. You don’t have to be afraid of those things, you’re not facing them alone. Keep marching ahead, you little rat, I promise I’ll be right behind you.” Keon’s words trailed off towards the end. He meant what he said, though it sort of disturbed him. Quickly looking away to avoid the situation becoming anymore veritable, Keon shrugged and watched the sun wave it’s final few rays beyond the treetops. With his hollow gaze stretched across the darkened sky, Keon didn’t expect the cold, metal surface that pressed up against his knee. “No thanks.” the male huffed simply as he watched Arthur rub his shielded face against his leg, Keon stood and took a step out of the pokemon’s way- causing Arthur to stumble forward before jumping up and grinning/ It seemed the little pokemon was back to himself, causing Keon to roll his eyes and mutter something about being dramatic as he began walking again.

The pair walked a little way, but it seemed that the world got darker with each step they took. Keon muttered a curse under his breath before stopping in his tracks, as if in sync, Arthur’s steps grew still as well. “We need to find somewhere to rest.” the man said abruptly, his voice hushed despite the loudness of the woods around him. If they did keep walking, perhaps they could get to the town quicker. But Keon knew, in time, the path would be too dark to even seen down. Then, the big creatures would be coming out. It’s hard, in case you didn’t know, to battle when you can’t see a damn thing. As the pair stood completely still, hidden by the shadows- a burst of human crashed through their path and out, into the beyond. They were clearly running for something, they better pray they didn’t just lead something to Keon. Keon tensed and stared the direction then the other trainer ran from, but nothing followed. “Does that idiot know they are going the wrong direction?” Keon huffed as he looked back at Arthur. The small Sheildon looked plain confused, but it just shuffled closer to Keon for support.

Keon and his pokemon took turns exchanging glances. That other trainer was alone. What if it was the last one that they would see in miles? With a groan of surrender, Keon motioned to follow the other male that fled through the woods just moments before.

Fortunately, the other trainer didn't get far before pausing. “Hey-” Keon waved, his usual monotone voice echoing through the trees. Then, the male paused. Why was that face so recognizable. Even though the dark, Keon could tell he had already encountered this person. “Damn, that’s annoying.” the trainer muttered under his breath, he then shrugged. He didn’t care, honestly; the larger the group the safer- no matter who was in it. This fool was really going the wrong way, he probably didn’t even plan on camping. Without thinking twice, Keon let out a criticizing huff. “I don’t know what the hell you are doing. But it’s not safe out here. I suggest we camp together, here is fine. Wait for the darkness out and start again early tomorrow morning.” Keon simply imposed his plan on the other male, he wasn’t really good at asking things. ( @BurbleBurble )
After a moment of brief silence, it was then that Victor couldn't find any of the other children he was with when he started the journey. Getting worried, he heard the sparking of electricity again and thought that his Tynamo was out and about. No, it was further through the forest. He walked through for a minute or two, only to find whatever made the sparking and crackling electricity was gone, but was replaced with a huge Ursaring. He saw a kid with a Minccino in his hair hitting the Ursaring. He sighed and gave a deadpan look before chasing after the bear and the terrified kid, trying to hide himself from the bear's menacing and hot pursuit of the kid, even though the Ursaring wouldn't give a damn about him anyway. He would try to help, but his Pokemon weren't equipped to take on a creature of this caliber. Khaydro could probably attempt it, but it would take a lot more than just Khaydro to knock the thing out. After about a brief moment, an ear-piercing noise could be heard, and Victor covered his ears in pain. He looked to see the Ursaring was reeling back in pain, and he found the source of the noise: The terrified kid had a Nincada.

Victor looked about again for his Deino, to which he found him hiding his head with his stubby feet to keep the noise from affecting him also. Victor decided it was best to return his friend before making his way through the brush, chasing after the boy. It would be beneficial for the boy to have him by his side, but he hoped his rampant stomping through the trees wouldn't make the boy think it was the Ursaring again, and he hoped that the noises he was making didn't attract anything else.

By the time he finally caught up to the kid, he realized they were near the path and there was another kid. The kid who seemed quite soulless and vacant, as if he had been through so much and the only thing left of him was his body wandering aimlessly in the void. He saw that the kid was also trying to get the attention of Arte. Victor looked over to Keon before looking back at the other kid with the Minccino. "Hey. I'm Victor. You seem familiar, but I digress," he looked at Keon before continuing to both of them. "It looks like you both need someone to partner up with for awhile. It's dangerous to go alone in Maiestas, anyway and a group of three would be beneficial. Would you like for me to accompany you both? I can set up a fire and other things, but we have to keep the fire to smoldering embers... The bugs will get attracted to it." He looked about, as if to confirm it as he could hear more buzzing in the treetops from nearby Beedrill and Nincada.

He also had a small smirk, which lightened up his gruff and scarred face a bit. "I also know how to heal anyone's Pokemon if they are injured. I just need to find berries and herbs to do so."
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"I don’t know what the hell you are doing. But it’s not safe out here. I suggest we camp together, here is fine. Wait for the darkness out and start again early tomorrow morning."

The clear words of Keon rang out in Arte's head. He recognized the boy as the dead eyed one, from sheer monotone alone. "Oh, you." Once again, he kinda just blurted it out. Though Arte was fairly happy to have anyone out here in the first place for him. "I mean, yeah, yeah. Sounds good." Huh. That was pretty cognizant for once. Maybe he was getting better.

Someone else broke through the brush- far older than either of the boys. Old enough to be their dad?...Probably not, but he was old enough. He spoke similar things of teaming up, and seemed far more aware of the dangers and issues ahead. He seemed nice enough. "Uh, right. Sure." Arte told Victor, his Minccino having dismounted him at this time, preferring the relatively "safe" ground.

"So, right. I'm Arte." And he was back to being unintelligible, almost immediately. Why was he like this. "My name, I mean. From Unova. Virbank." Why he felt like telling them where he lived back in Unova...Well, wasn't that a thing people did?...It had to be, because he was a people. Err, person. "And, Sugar." He patted the head of the little chinchilla. Who's eyes darted between the two newcomers.

Yeah, he was a bit bad at the whole talking thing, but he could be a whole lot worse. Of course, he still made himself look like an idiot.


Previously Ampharos' Dragon Blood
Neo had injured pokemon, he knew that. What he didn't know was where everyone else was. He DID, however, see, or rather hear something terrible. A high-pitched noise that hurt his ears and probably would have done physical damage is he was closer. Then, he heard something stamping through the woods. "P-probably nothing. Let's just find the others. You all okay? Let's see if I have any potions." Neo checked his bag to find it empty except for a few Pokeballs. The potions must've fallen out... He silently pleaded that the stamping thing wouldn't find him. Trudging through the forest, it got darker. And darker. And darker. Suddenly, there was a ripple in the darkness. Bugs jumped out from every side. Struggling, he sent out his Swablu in hopes of protection. Ari was safe from the bugs, thank goodness, but when she saw Neo surrounded by them, she started getting scared. The Normal/Flying type picked up a sour Aspear Berry, then ran in front of her trusted friend and used Natural Gift. The Aspear turned the Natural Gift into an Ice-type as the move caused green rings to emit from Ari as the air around Neo quickly turned cold. This thankfully deterred the bugs. If only it could have stayed that way for longer.

The duo walked on, Neo graciously thanking Ari and then feeding her the berry she had picked up. The boy didn't mind the cold because of his hoodie, but the Cotton Bird Pokemon wasn't feeling the same way. Go figure. Ari is weak to Ice. "Ari, you can let down your Natural Gift now. I think the bugs are gone for good." The forest, however, had different plans. The darkness rippled once again, eyes glowed, and suddenly, both boy and Bird were swarmed by bugs! Struggling, Neo held out the remains of the berry. The Cotton Bird, once again, tried to come tot he rescue, this time with Secret Power. She glowed and cried as trees shook, but that only scared a few bugs and summoned more. The duo tried their hardest to press on, struggling.

Right as Neo saw a light in the distance,maybe a campfire, he got hit with a great multitude of Bug Bite attacks. With the last of his strength sapped, he fell to the ground as he saw his Swablu do the same. They were out of strength and energy as Neo closed his eyes, trying to struggle, but out of energy as the many bugs pelted him from all angles. "H-help! Anybody? P-ple a s e..."