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Old 07-19-2017, 02:31 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by Marion Ette View Post
Fountain (Median Dia, Sandaa) – After sorting out her balance at the Check-In/Help Desk, Ami makes her way to the fountain. Beside the fountain is a small sign encouraging patrons to make wishes and offer coins to Jirachi - “Unlike other fountains, the wishes you make to Jirachi are guaranteed to come true... with enough coins, that is!” What an odd thing for a sign to say... and how odd to be so certain of Jirachi's wish-granting powers through this gaudy fountain! Even the signage at Jirachi's own Shrine was nowhere near as presumptuous of its ability to communicate to the little legend.

The little wish that escapes Ami's lips reverberates oddly throughout the casino – odd, considering that the acoustics in the space typically would not produce such an effect. As the coin flips into the water, Ami notices that the little gold coin is the odd-one out in a sea of larger, dark purple coins submerged in the fountain. For a brief moment, Ami can't shake the incredibly unsettling feeling that the statue is watching her – not from its eyes, but from the water-spewing “eye” on its stomach, which Ami notices is more round than it should be. In that brief moment, the water gushing forth from the eye stops – time itself, too, feels as if it stops, frozen in a single second, a round, red eye staring unblinking into Ami's very soul – only for the water to start again and the feeling to pass, though Ami's uneasiness remains.

A crackling, animatronic voice bursts forth from one of the smaller statues surrounding Jirachi – the Magikarp's robotic catchphrase seems to be, “If wishes were fishes, we'd all cast nets! Hyuk hyuk!” Its metallic fins move slowly, gratingly, back and forth. Perhaps other members of this statue crew had similar gimmicks, activated with enough coins...

Nadie looks visibly shaken – her psychic senses seem to have picked up something about this statue being very, very wrong. However, she has not deviated from her trainer's orders, and maintains her focus and composure – indeed, she has noticed something unusual about the fountain, and directs Ami's attention to her finding. The Jirachi statue's left eye is slightly different from the right – the left eye is made of a different material, and sticks out somewhat, like it could be pressed.

There could be more to this fountain... or it might be time to move on.

Meanwhile, a brief investigation of the window above the fountain by the intrepid Scurvy allows him to discover, much to his delight, that the star window can be opened... but only from inside. With substantial effort and dexterity, Scurvy opens the star window a crack, just enough so that someone else could pry it open from the outside. With his mission accomplished, Scurvy and Gary can continue straight ahead. Scurvy gains 1 level for his show of finesse.

The Path to Wishes (Raves, Heather, Meetan, Sandaa, Kawaii) – Five among you choose to move straight ahead from the lobby, where the Path to Wishes awaits – or so it is called by the massive yellow neon sign overhead. At first, this “path” appears like a dead end – a short, dark blue corridor with no windows or doors, the ceiling and upper walls painted to look like the star-studded night sky. Tiny openings in the corridor open up every so often, with an animatronic Jirachi head peeping through at guests walking by... To delight or frighten children, depending on their views regarding uncanny valley facsimilies of Pokemon – and is this ever one of them! Eerily lifelike eyes in an incredibly fake, plastic body – in some cases, the creators were too lazy to bother even with that, and just have the head on a somewhat obvious metal stick. This peeping Pokemon appears to be triggered by motion, and seems downright suspicious, though it's hard to place exactly why. In times past, when Jirachi's Casino was only a single-floor building, this room would have been where the old Starter Slots and Roulette would be located. The tiny slot machines and old roulette wheel sit awkwardly at the “end” of the path, but the faded lights blinking on the faces of the slots are just enough to illuminate two signs. One, which reads “FAME”, points to the right. The other, which reads “FORTUNE”, points to the left. “FAME” has a little hamburger/soda icon on a sub-sign beneath it, indicating some sort of food available, and both paths also have a sub-sign for “RESTROOMS”... for those of us with simpler, more immediate desires.

The corridor has no security cameras, and is mostly featureless, save for a suspicious patch in the wall that looks like a door might have been painted over. The only guard, a Pupitar at the end of the hall, wiggles with intimidation at the sight of visitors, his hat two sizes too small. Feeling he has done his guarding job for the day, he goes back to staring longingly at the big roulette wheel, which he no longer has arms to spin... perhaps one day.

Kawaii attempts to pull the lever of one of the slot machines, but without coins, the machine is inoperable and the lever won't budge. It does seem like the coin slot was enlarged somewhat, as if to fit a larger denomination of coin than the typical Casino Coin.

We all must follow our own paths to achieve our heart's desire. Which paths will you take?
As Gary and Scurvy made their way by the fountain, he nonchalantly positioned himself at an angle by the wall where he wouldn’t be noticed easily by the security camera. Taking the opportunity, Scurvy used his agility to leap off of Gary’s shoulder and climb up to a conspicuous ceiling window in the shape of a star and nudged it open ever so slightly. While this was going on, Gary watched another trainer approach the fountain from his peripheral. There seemed to be something suspicious about the third eye on the belly of the statue in the middle, something Gary took note of. Additionally, he watched at the trainer seemed to be inspecting something unusual about the left eye on the statue.

The silence was then broken by some creepy animatronic voice from one of the statues, and at this point, Scurvy had resumed his perch on Gary’s shoulder. Gary nodded in approval of his Aipom and headed down the hallway behind a few other trainers towards the Path to Wishes. Here, they were all greeted by another animatronic robot, which Gary found increasingly unsettling, and ended up in an old casino area where some slot machines and a roulette wheel were located.

There was a split in the hallway, and Gary waited to see which way the other trainers would go. One of them seemed especially fixated on a suspicious patch in the wall, while another attempted to distract the Pupitar guard while his Honchkrow flew off to the path of FORTUNE to the left. Gary silently thanked the trainer in his mind for drawing the guard’s attention away from its duty and proceeded to head towards the path of FAME to the right. Below the sign were a pair of sub-signs that indicated there was food and a restroom to be found.

Gary had made up his mind at this point. Heading into the restroom first, he quietly closed the door behind him. Looking around to make sure no one was already in the stalls, he turned his attention to Scurvy. “Alright Scurvy, let’s see if there’s any vents in here for you to sneak into. If you can, do your best to scout the area as stealthily as you can. I’m going to go investigate the food area quickly and then I’ll meet back with you in here.” Scurvy grinned and nodded, responding with an “Ai ai!” If he couldn’t find any vents to sneak into, then he would just quietly follow on Gary’s shoulder.
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