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Old 06-14-2017, 12:01 PM   #64
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Join Date: Jun 2017
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Originally Posted by morningstar View Post

“HYA!” The normally quiet Pokemon let out a remarkably loud cry in response to your compliment. It recognized the genuine praise, and looked as if proud to have done work to make its trainer happy. The interaction almost seemed normal, a trainer praising their Pokemon as they adventured together. Then, you remembered that you were at a very peaceful shrine, perhaps not the place to raise one’s voice.

As you kneeled, you noticed the paper seemed incredibly old. It was yellowing at the edges, and threatened to rip even as you carefully unrolled it. Surprisingly, the writing on the paper was not faded at all. In black ink and a clear, flowing script, it read:

You read through the contents carefully, looking for meaning in each word. The appearance of the note was mysterious, and the note even more so. Strangely, it seemed to be addressed to you and the questions you had asked yourself upon arriving. Could this hold the answers to the stone shrine you were looking for? Or was this some kind of tourist trap type game with a gift shop at the end? You took a cursory look around your surroundings, noticing that the dust had cleared. The shrine grounds were expansive, yet did not hold much besides the shrine itself. If you were to follow this note, where would one start?
Of all the things his hyperactive mind had expected to find on the parchment, a nursery rhyme wasn’t one of them. Which was why he couldn’t hold back a disappointed frown while his eyes scanned the little poem.

Is someone mocking me? Admittedly it is well written, but to think someone would pull this kind of prank in a holy place…

He dropped the paper to the floor, dismissing it in favour of re-examining the perimeter on his own. However, he stopped midway once he realized Staryu wasn’t following him. Instead, the cosmic being was scanning the discarded document on its own, shedding a red light on the text as it went along. Then, once it was done, it turned its attention to the expansive shrine, apparently intent on taking the charade seriously!

It’s acting of its own accord, despite my lack of interest… Is this the disobedience so amply documented in untrusting Pokémon? No, this is something else… this is personality.

It was quickly becoming apparent that the starfish had a sharply inquisitive mind of its own, regardless of what its Trainer decided to do. He couldn’t allow himself to mistake that kind of beautiful scientific curiosity with rebellion; if anything, he should try and keep up with Staryu’s efforts – a Professor who lost his sense of wonder or, more importantly, his desire to act on it, was no more than a faceless lab assistant. If only for that reason, he shouldn’t be so quick to disregard the note, strange as it was.

“It said something about going deeper where the earth shakes, yes? Maybe we should look for some entrance, some underground tunnel,” he finally said out loud, determined to cooperate with Staryu for the sake of strengthening their faint bond. “Rich in history as this place might be, it is quite barren in terms of construction… mayhap the shrine itself is where we should look.”

Not that he’d noticed anything the first time he’d inspected it, but he was looking for something else entirely then – historical leads, clues on the mythos of Cloud Garden. Now, he was after anything that could be considered out of place: a dislodged stone, a crack on the shrine’s surface, a concealed button of some sort… anything that could perhaps reveal an entrance to “where the earth shakes”. Meanwhile, Staryu continued scanning the perimeter with the gem that may or may not be its eye, and hopefully their joint efforts would yield results.
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