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Old 03-20-2016, 11:07 PM   #1
Lil'twick
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Litwick Broken Memories

M̯̰͙̹̤͙̪͔̓͑̃̃̕̕͟Ė̢̛͓̫͓̬͍̞͉͜M̡̱̪̼͎̠͕̿̋̅͛̊̿̋̉ͅOͬ̈́ͧ͗ ̬̼̟̯̭̹̻̩̾̓ͣR̨̺̣͈̜̜̝̮͕̅ͮͦ̓͋ͫ̽̏Y̴͓̫̜̳̎̅̊ ͇̻̰̭̥̰̲̼́̃̀̒͌ͯ̈́͡D̹͈̭͑̓͑ͥĂ͙͓͎̮ͯͥ̊ͫ͠T̀͗̍̅ͩ͠͏̜͇̘̲̞͖A ̖̖̤̹̩ͪ̂͢͜B̢͆̆̌̄̉͆͊ͭ̐ͅA̝͇̰̻͋̓̀̈́ͥͮ̉S̭̖̪͍͋̆̕Ȩ͉̘̋ͮͫ́̀ ͔ ̢͇̝͍͉ͦ͆͆ͩA̸̐̏ͧ̽ͫ́͐̕͏̗̜͉C̢̭̼͇̠̟̍ͣ͌̍̂̚͡C̝̤̘͗ͦ̇ͤ̏ͯ͌ͯ̏ Ẻ̢̗̝͙͛͠S̷̵̱͉͔̣̮͐ͨ̓̍̒͑̀͢Ś̶̡͔̖̥͇̲ͥ́͐́͆͝-̜̳͕̟̲̫̎ͪ͛̽̐͆̿̔G͙̑̋̐͆ͅR̓̏҉͍̟̫A̴̢̺̦͈͎̐̏͞N̸͈͚͓͍ͥ̇̾Ṫ͐ ͉͓͐̒͑͟͡Ë̴̮̞͝D̸̤͚̹̫̬̯͗͌̄̈ͫ͝
̛̤̼̜̼͙̫̜̈̉̕͝
̨̖̹͙̹͍̭̫͚̽.̴̠̙̫ͬͪ͌̍.͈͎̺̮̩̠̩ͫͩ͋̐.̸̤ͨ̈̈́͊ͪ.ͪ̏͆̓ͩ̂̔̽̈́͝ ͍͕̘̗̣̞͠.̧̻̠̲̜ͩ̊̆͋̌͝͞.̡̹̦̞͔̮̮͆̊͐̈́̈̃̎.̗̻̱̦̭̯̖̅̎͒ͣ͋ͧ. ̨̥̦̦͐̓.ͦ̏ͮ͗͒̓͐͏͏͙̤̹͚͍̣.̴̛̟͍͚͎̘͖̤̭̄ͯ̀͌̽ͥ
̝̼̠̬̘̞͙̝̹ͯͯ͆͛̽͘.̬́ͮ.̀̓҉̛̗̫̹͔̙̮̫̟̰͜.̡̧̻̹̗̼͙̅̄ͪ.ͪͮ̒̍ ̫̪̗̳̦̪̇̍̽ͦ
̴̡̜̗ͨ̉͒̈́̌̕.̭͚̥̼ͬ̽͛͘
̨̖̜̹̖̞̙ͣ͌ͣC̤͚͉̯ͧ̊̿O̸̬̹̬̘̙͈͓͑̂ͨͣ̋̽̓̚͝R̟͕ͧ̂̍͂̍͑͜͜͝R͐ ̡̭̻̩͙̼̹̪̯͐U̸̩͎̞͕̰̍͂ͦ̇̈́̃͘P̗̹̯̮̝̳̻ͥ͑͢͢T̀̍ͩͩ͒͂ͫ҉̱͕̠̩͕ ̰E̥̝̞͔̠̼̽̽̓͋͊̑͋ͅDͤ̆̌ͥ̈̉͟͏̥͔͍
̪̠͔̤̗͚̫̥̰ͩ̑͂̔̉́͐̓̒
̺̲͚̺̪̏̍ͮ̆ͨͦͧM͎̱̼̑Ë̢̳̘̖͇̠̲̫ͪͬ̓̓ͨ̽̋͘M̵̸̲̘͛̊O͐̄̌͌͏̀͞ ̫̟̼͖̦̟͍̺R̘͙͙̝̝͉̠͎̾̔ͧ̓̿̊͘͞Y̷̫̦͕͖̣̆̍̓ͩ̉̿̏ ̸̰͓̫͎̂͊͟͢ͅR̵̻̺͑̓̓ͦͮͭ̓̚E̠͚͌̆ͯ͘P̶͙͈̥̘͇ͦ̄̇̈́͒͡Ä̼́ͩͣ̑̾͛ ̹͔̟͇ͅI̸͎͕͖̒̋̂R̺̥̩͙̫͊́̆̒̌̆͛ ͎͆͐ͥ̅ͤ͒̀ͅS̲̣̘͙̙̳͒ͧT̵̞͖͈̥̲̰̮͆ͩ͐ͧ̾ͯͭ͡ͅA̡̱͚ͯ͟R͚̗̹̞̜͛̅ ̬̹Ť̼͕̭̩͖͙͎̒̊̀ͅȆ̴̼̘ͧͫ̋ͧ͞D̈́͛ͤ̀҉̝̬̲̩͈̱̘̻͇
̢̰̘̣̬͉̒ͩ̃̋̚
̥̖̳̹̇̎̀͝.̹̖͉͙͋̈͝.̬̻̠̑̂̿̅̾.̧̧͚̮̟̂ͣ̐̾͑̚.̧̧̭̮̤̫̠̐̌͂̐. ̖̹̥͕̟̳ͦͧ.̶͉̦͓͎̮̘͑̄̍̓.̶̪̥̈́̃̆̊͑͊ͯ̀.̴̵̧̞̭̠̐ͤ̋̂͆.͇̒́̿̂ ͍̻̣̰̦.̶̭ͧ̆͜.̷̭̲͕̻̮̭̟̊̚̚͜ͅ.̢͍̝̮̭̤̂̒̏̏̅͠.̷̦̞̘̔̐̒̄̀̕ͅ .̪̭̥ͯ̓ͥ.ͦ̓̊͏̧̯͟.̡͎̖̹̯͔̩͍̖̯̊͂̑ͫ̎ͬ͛͘͝.̸̪̮͂̄̉̉͟͡.ͦ̽͋̈́ ͉̰̼̰̮̭̬̀͘.̛̳̰̺͆ͩ̑̃̍ͨ̽͞.ͩ͑̌҉͚̩̯͚͜.̛͎̦̮̑̂͠.̧͎͌ͧ͂̇͛̀̌ ̫.̧̺̟͈̈̆̆͑̀͡.̶̩̼̹̖̯͕̿ͥ̃̈́̏̋̚͘.̫̦ͨ̃͆̊̚.̴͍̞͔̳͊̈́̓ͭ̇̂ͨ̽ ͍̦̮ͅ.̬̳͖̯͕̗͈͐̆ͅ.̑ͮ̏̊ͣ҉̦̭̮̫͇̖̥.͔̤͉̞͙̓̒͋ͧ͛.̴̹̄̏͂̓̍̊̎ ̼͔.͑͂̾́͏҉͚̼̘͕̮͕.̝͍ͤ.̢̡̳̣͈ͭ̊̽̏̐ͣ.̵̯̱̌.̦͙ͬ̽̾͌̒ͫ̐̌̕͞͝ ̹̻̹̳.̲̘̰̱̝̦͈̜̆̑̎͋̀̕͢.̵̸̬͙̭͓̘̪͚͔͔̐ͫ͋́.̡̗̯̤̙͌ͬ͟͝.̏ͦ̓ ̶͈̯͈̗̳̻̻̞͋ͭ̍ͣͥ.̫̠̜̻̗̦̣̞̗͛́̒.ͨ͑ͨ͏̢̩̳̹͙̦̭̞̀.̴̡̞ͪ̆͂͐͛ ̳͖͉.̫͕͍́ͬ̑̉͗̎̽͝.̢̞̱̞̻̲̙̟̃̀
̨̟̦̼̗̗̊̍ͦ̋̽̎̂͜͞
̎͗̈҉̘̘.͐̏ͣͥͯ͝҉̱̯͙̳.̞̟ͮͪ̈́.̸͖͉͔ͨ̅̎̈́̀̄͆͆́.̘͙̲̟̖̓ͩ̐͂͞ ̱̳.̶̶̘̰̣̋̀͆ͬ̄͐.̡̨͍̲̞̦͕͈̦̭ͩͦͥ͒ͫ͜.̧̤͕ͭ͐̒̓͗.̷̷͎̹̟͚͒͛ͣ ͈̬.̲̝̙̙̿͛̊ͬ͊̀̎.̻͖̄̏͝.̨̲̩͉̺̤͔̋ͫ͗͐ͥ̕͟.͋͒̒͏̨͏̤̜̬̳͎.͑̃ ͓̯͖̖̱̪̹͂̏͐̅ͣ͛͆
͔̰̲̥͔͕̣̘̓͑͛̄ͨͯ̚
̢̭͔͙̻̤̘̤̫̿̏̔̃̆͌̂̅͘.̻͈̘̱̈́ͫͫ̎̂̓.̡͖̹̦͚̩̥͕̓̃ͥ̋̅͐̚͟.́̐̄ ̴̢̜̻̘̄ͩͣ͢
͓̘͈̖̗̜̏ͯͫ
̣̦͋̄̾͂̕͢͝U̫̻͕̞̥͌͋͂̄ͤ́͡N̟̖̖̩̑ͨͦͬͣ͟͝A̛̺͎͔̙̹͊ͮ̓͑̄ͅB̊̓ ͙̘̿̀̋̊ͤ͌̿L̨͈̱͖͓ͥ͋̍̅͝͡Ė̷͔͓̺̤̜͌͒̋̅̽ͦ̔͡ ̭̫̰̲̮̫͇̖̐̿̌͠T̖̘̽̅̓̇͑͌ͯͮ͂͢͡O͆̑͐̑͏̼̘̫̤͢ ̨̟̱̳̌̈ͧͦͫ̊ͯ́̈́̀R̵̷̙̳̟̄̈̀ͬ͗͐̒̌E̛ͣ͑̔̏̃̒̉͑͏͙̯̦͇̰̘͙P̾̐ͣ ̸̤̥̱͓͗͂ͤ̓A̡͍͚͖͓͌͗̇ͤͧ͒͋I̯̟̝̮̗͖ͤ̒̍̀́́͡R͔͔̦͎̫͒̋͋͜ ̭̖̻ ̵͓ͪͫ̏̏̂̚M̸̨͕͍̙̮͕̺͇̒̅̀̔̐͞E̡̯̻͓̝̹̭̟͔̜͂͋̀̌͛ͤͩͥM̊̒̽̾ͧͣ ̛͕̰̭̳Ò͎̟ͬͯͨ͊ͪ͢R̞̲ͤ̇̓ͮ̓͒͋ͅI̵͇̼̼̦̪̫̼̗̱͑́̋̕Eͬͨ̀̈͌̈́̚̚ ̥̻̻̝͍̏́S̷̫̺͈̭͓̪͂ͅ
̸̠̟͈͇̟̄̿͆̀ͩ̽͊̃̑͡


Memory restart activated. Amnesia protocol online. Starting long-term memory repair.

Repaired Memories-
William I
William II
Marie I

Final Memory-
Ritual

Homuncular Memories-
Awakening
No other memories were found in their original state.

APOCRYPHAL DATA-

False memories found.

Memory analysis confirmed.

Memories belong to [Leo].

Memories are not accurate to current host.

Memories are not of current host.

Memories regulated to [Apocrypha] folder.

Would you like to view these false memories? Y/N

>Yes

Library Access Granted. Welcome [USER].

Leo's Memories:
Rain
Drizzle
Cloudburst (CW: Violence, Abuse, Nudity)
Deluge (CW: Violence, Abuse)
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 11-20-2021 at 09:02 PM.
Lil'twick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2016, 11:09 PM   #2
Lil'twick
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Litwick MEMORY: WILLIAM I

NEW MEMORY RECOVERED. Estimated time of creation- Early Childhood.

START TRANSMISSION SEQUENCE

The walls of the kindergarten were large and tall, filled with myriad works of art from the previous year. This place was humongous to Austin, who was only used to his small house within the Virbank suburbia. There were toys everywhere the eyes can see, but he wasn’t interested in any of them. He was scared, this place was foreign. He wanted his mother, why did she leave him here? Why did she abandon him here? Some lady spoke to him in a soft, soothing tone... He didn’t like it. He started to cry, falling over and begging for his mother. The woman tried hard to console him, but he wasn’t registering anything she said. He was ruled by sadness, a sense of despair that the child never experienced before. He might have, but he wouldn’t have any recollection of it. Well, until a voice got his attention.

“Why’s he so sad Ms. Shire?” Asked the most sweetest voice the young boy ever heard.

This was the day Austin Theodore Willows fell madly in love with William Lucas Glenn, and would never let the other boy go. While Austin looked similar to how he does now, only in the form of a five-year-old child and completely different attire, William was everything. He was always taller than Austin until roughly Ten, where the shorter boy got a humongous growth spurt and always stood taller than Will. Will had snow-kissed hair, it being light blonde that almost seemed to go into snowy white. He had a more pudgy face, but always had more muscle than Austin. He had eyes of smoky quartz., deep alluring eyes...

“I think he just has first-day blues,” the teacher responded and left Austin alone with the strange boy.

“What’s your name?” The boy asked the brunet, who looked up and stared at him. There was something about him... Something safe. A feeling Austin couldn’t describe, or at the time didn’t have the words to describe. Through sniffled sobs, the shorter boy eventually calmed down, getting up and staring at the taller one in the eyes.

“I-It’s Austin,” he responded meekly, still rubbing one of his eyes.

“No, no that won’t do. We already have an Austin...” The tall boy was lost in thought and trying as hard as his five-year-old mind could to process an idea. His face then lit up and then blurted out his idea. “Do you have a middle name?”

“A middle na... Oh! Theodore,” the brunet responded to the blonde. The redness on Austin’s face started to drain, and his color soon returned to what it originally was.

“Theo! We’ll call you Theo. My name’s Will,” William responded, extending his hand out to Austin. The younger boy took it and felt Will’s hand close in on his. It was warm, it was soothing. He then felt Will next to him, acting as if he was supposed to take care of Austin. He then started moving, William leading him towards a circle of other children.
“Hey, guys! This is Theo!” William announced excitingly as he held up Austin’s hand, and the two eventually fell down on top of each other, laughing. They spent the rest of the day playing together, with Austin taking the lead about what they should pretend to be. Things started to get hazy, but Austin knew he was having fun. Well, until it was time to leave.

“Aww, don’t cry Theo! We can see each other again tomorrow, and then the next day, and every day until the end of time!” Will stretched his hands out as far as he could, almost toppling over in the process. “We’re best friends, right? I’ll never leave you.”

“Yeah... We are! No matter what, we’ll be together... Forever!” Austin cheerfully chimed in as he left the building.

~.w.~

Austin awoke rapidly and saw Wisp looking over him worryingly. The teen flashed a smile to the Pokemon before covering his face.

“Forever...” He happily murmured as he drifted back to sleep. Wisp continued to watch over him.

“And ever,” Wisp thought as he continued his unending vigil.


END TRANSMISSION
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:49 PM.
Lil'twick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2016, 11:42 PM   #3
Lil'twick
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Litwick MEMORY: WILLIAM II

NEW MEMORY RECOVERED. Estimated time of creation- Late adolescence, towards start of puberty.

START TRANSMISSION SEQUENCE

The holiday season was always an exciting one for Austin, especially within the past few years.. While he turned 10 just a few months ago, he was already getting caught up in preteen woes and the first signs of puberty. Voice cracks and hair was part of the problems. He started to grow taller, taller than William even. He knew William for a little more than half of his entire life... And they were still as inseparable as when they first met that fateful day. It was normal for best friends to always be with each other, right? A weird feeling in his chest seemed to suggest otherwise.

He’d see Will later today. His family and group of family friends were having a party over at the Glenn household. Austin was there earlier that morning, but, Mrs. Glenn kicked him out because they wanted no surprises ruined. It wasn’t like he would tell any secrets about the party to anyone... Well, until Travis eventually pried the information out of him. His younger brother was a mixed back, a calm sugar addict that got hyper and excited about things that he wanted to know. It was much more contrary to his older brother Bryce, and their old sister.... [WARNING: PORTION OF MEMORY COULD NOT BE RECOVERED]. Bryce himself was an aspiring musician that went with the flow in trends. He’d often come home high, much to the chagrin of their mother.

Austin looked at the clothes laid out for him on his bed. Taking off his pajama shirt (He often would wear the same clothes for an entire weekend), he struggled under the sea of fleece and wool as he put the ugly christmas sweater on. It wasn’t really ugly... more so tacky than anything else. He examined the blue sweater, which had a pattern of Snover and bulbs. Continuing on, he put on a fresh pair of underwear, and nice, comfortable sweatpants. He felt he could drown in the warm caress of the woolen clothing, but remembered that he already wasted enough time that day. Hastily grabbing the rest of the supplies he personally needed for the party (including a poorly wrapped present for Will. Austin never had the best hand-eye coordination), he ran downstairs and waited for the rest of his family to finish getting ready.

Footsteps and yelling could easily be heard from the upper floor, causing a small chuckle to escape from the brunet’s lips. Why couldn’t his brothers just listen the first time? He was guilty of it himself, but much less than his siblings. Knowing them, Travis was eating candy under his bed, only half-dressed; while Bryce would still be asleep. After five, maybe ten, minutes, the middle child’s hunch was correct. He watched as Travis shambled down the stairs in his Buneary onesie, having some sticky residue around his mouth while sucking on a sucker. Bryce soon followed suit, wearing a Stantler headband and some tacky green Delibird sweater. The seven year old yawned while scratching his butt, eventually making his way next to Austin. The ten year old watched as the sixteen year old stared at them, before sitting on the other side of the middle child. The three of them awaited their mother as she walked down the stairs, glaring at the children.

“I am so tired of having to make you three do everything! Bryce, why can’t you just go to sleep at a decent time? Travis, stop hoarding candy in your room. I can’t believe you’re even going in that! Ugh, we’re late anyways. Austin, please for the love of all that is holy, don’t get snarky.The last thing I need to deal with right now is you also getting on my nerves,” she grunted out at her children, before grabbing the last of what they needed to bring to the party and walked out to the garage.

“What’s her problem?” Austin heard Bryce mutter under his breath, before grabbing the drowsy Travis and holstering him up. The middle child watched as his two brothers went out to the garage. Grabbing his own belongings, Austin followed them into the darkness of the garage.

-=w=-

The Glenn house was one of the biggest in the Virbank Suburbia. Even so the outer residential district was small, it still felt huge to Austin. It was a big, white house with many curves and windows. The inside, however, was always warm and cozy. The ragtag band of brothers and their annoyed mother stood outside of the house’s door. Austin snickered as Bryce got his ear nagged off by his mother, while Travis was almost asleep on Bryce’s back. Before the teenager could argue back, the door opened. A blonde haired girl with a violet hair streak looked at them, greeted them, and then laughed at Bryce about his fauxhawk. The older brunet yelled at her, causing Travis to almost fall off. The family eventually made their way inside, and they all dispersed to different parts of the house.

Austin eventually found Will in the living room, lying down on the couch asleep. Despite his mom’s bickering, the Willows family was at least an hour and a half early. Austin eventually wormed his way up to his best friend, and took the sleeping boy into an embrace. He felt Will stir in his arms, and excited watched as the sleepy boy smile at him.

“Waaaat toook you so looong,” William slurred out, still overcome with the calmness of sleep.

“Brothers,” Austin replied, giving Will some space to stretch.

“Ahhhhhh! Kinda glad it’s just Marie and I,” the blonde replied after a yawn. Will was never the best at waking up, but at least he wasn’t irritable about it. He was more like... A big, fluffy cat. He just accepted the attention given to him.

“Whatever, siblings are bothersome regardless.” Austin stuck his tongue out, making his best mocking impression of Travis. Will laughed at it, and the two continued making impersonations of their siblings. It was the small things that the two enjoyed, and they didn’t need much fuel to enjoy the other’s company.

As the hour went on, more and more guests arrived at the house. The adults, teens, and children all started to come together into their own little groups. Laughter commonly echoed from the kitchen, with some type of drunken stupor to follow. Music came from upstairs, the local teens seeming to be practicing music for a future battle of the bands. That left the kids to their own devices. They were currently playing hide and seek in the labyrinth known as the basement.

“Come out wherever you are!” A voice echoed through the dark room, the boxes and objects refracting the voice into an almost indiscernible origin.

Austin felt his hand gripped tightly as Will looked around. It wasn’t commonly known that Will was absolutely horrified of the dark, but he held through for Austin. As such, the two commonly hid together. His hands were soft, starting to get a bit hard from wear. Spiky blonde hair tangled with messy brown hair, small giggles exchanged as the two warm bodies wormed their way into the tight space of a crawl tube. Legs meshed together, noses touched, eyes stared at the other. A verdant green stared into his own light hazel. It was a certain harmony, that they just fit together so easily. They were never one without the other.

“You think Keaton can find us?” Austin whispered into his best friend’s ear.

“That crybaby? You know he’s as blind as a zubat Theo,” Will replied in jest. Small laughter was exchanged again. One of the things the two shared were their attachments to nicknames. While they had a lot in common (and many things they differed on), it was one of the few habits that they shared. Five years later, Will still called Austin ‘Theo’. In return, Will will always be Will. The brunet remembered how adamant Will was about going by ‘William’. That lasted about... half an hour? Old habits die hard.

“He’s keen though, and he easily finds things others don’t...” The taller boy responded. Keaton, while being a crybaby and having an odd attachment to Austin, was very attentive and smart. He probably rivaled Austin in the intellect department, and also William in the speed department. He was still their friend, and that was final.

Before Will could reply, they heard snores echo through the basement. Austin was filled with both anger and happiness. How could Travis sleep during a game of hide and seek? At times it felt like that kid ran purely on sugar, and if he hit a low... He hit a low. The snoring soon lead to Travis being found, and his older brother’s giggling causing Keaton to find him and Will. The four boys laughed as they started to organize another round.

Austin, being the shortest of the preteens, now towered over Travis and Keaton. Will wasn’t too shorter than him, but was a bit more stockier than skinny. Both of them were a good ways into puberty, with deepening voices and body odor being some of the more common occurrences with them. Will’s voice still often cracked. Keaton was just starting, and grew taller everyday. He had smooth, almost chocolate colored skin compared to the more paler skin of his friends. Apparently he’s native to the tropics, which does make some sense. Travis was the shortest, and was commonly identified by his light-brown spike bowl called hair. The quartet started to disperse as a few voices made their way downstairs, turning on the lights.

“I still don’t know why you refuse to be our vocalist Marietta...” A pompous voice muttered.

“Shut up Preston. Just because you’re the descendent of Kalosian royalty doesn’t mean you have the right to order us around.” Marie snarked back.

“Well let’s just find the boys, okay? I just want to go back upstairs and play guitar and get high.” That was his brother, Austin could tell Bryce’s voice from anywhere.

“I swear...” The girl threatened, causing the druggie to just flirt back. The four boys eventually headed to the voices, causing the teens to react in different ways.

“Hey cuties! Had fun down here in the dungeon?” Marie asked playfully, before waltzing over and picking up Travis.

“HEY LET ME DOWN!” The young child screamed at her.

“Aww is our little bunny tired?” She cooed, causing the youngest to stop resisting.

“Y-yeah...”

“Let’s get you upstairs. I’m sure your mom can help with that~” Marie told him a friendly, sing-song voice, causing the two to disappear upstairs.

“Come on Kea, mum says that we’re exchanging presents,” Preston muttered, causing his brother to follow him upstairs.

“Well boys, funs over. Say, want some peppermint hot chocolate?’ Bryce asked, causing the two best friends to excitingly shake their heads yes.

The three families soon piled together in the living room. The events of the present exchange were hazy, but, Austin knew everyone enjoyed what they got. He gave Will a new issue of some comic that he was raving about. The brunet prefered actual books to comics, while the blonde was quite the opposite. Austin himself received a nice set of coloring supplies from Marie. She was always mentioning how she’d love to teach him the arts. Was this another bribe? He didn’t really know nor cared at this point. The night continued on, with the snow starting to fall heavily. Everyone sorted out sleeping arrangements, which eventually led to everyone but the two best friends asleep. The two kept a silent vigil, watching the snowfall.

“Do you think... That the snow buries the past?” Will mentioned, watching as some Castform danced outside of the window.

“What do you mean?” Austin replied. It was curious on why Will would ask this question. Was he right? Or was this one of those tired random thoughts they commonly shared during sleepovers.

“I mean, think about it. Every year, it snows here. Then when the snow is gone there are so many new things.” Will was now facing him. Austin watched as the shorter boy cocked his head.

“Maybe they’re just asleep? Remember, we learned that Teddiursa and Ursaring do it when it snows!” The brunet gave his opinion on the subject.

“I mean... What if there were so many secrets buried in the ice... And it all melted away when spring came? It feels a bit sad...” Will muttered as he returned his gaze to the window.

“At the same time, it feels... happy. That your secrets are forever protected,” Austin smiled as he have his remark. “Like a safety net, you know?”

“I guess so...” Will wasn’t usually this distant. “I just don’t want us to become like that... That we hate each other once the snow melts.”

“William...” Austin hugged his friend. When did he get so worried about their friendship? They were best friends. Nothing would ever tear them apart. Nothing could tear them apart. The two of them would be with the other forever. If he didn’t care for Will, then why would he still be friends with him?

“Sorry Theo...”

Silence. The two sat in each other’s arms for who knew how long. They were just getting started with their lives. There was no point in overthinking things. No matter what, Austin knew that they would eventually be together. He looked up at the ceiling for a quick second, and saw there was mistletoe. Why...? He didn’t remember it being there earlier that night. Was this... to bind them even closer? As a sort of seal that they would never be apart.

“Hey Will. We’re under the mistletoe.”

“We are?”

“Apparently we moved under it somehow,” Austin laughed.

“I-I guess we should...”

Hesitation? Will never was the one to hesitate. Sure, he was calm and waited for Austin to take action, but he never... hesitated.

“Yeah...”

And then they kissed. It was a foreign feeling at first, to kiss someone that wasn’t his family. To be intimate with someone on this level. They were barely even starting their teenage years, but there was a passion there. Was it just the hormones addling their minds? Austin didn’t know, but he enjoyed it. The taste of peppermint hot chocolate lingered on William’s lips, which were as soft as cotton candy. Even if it was a few seconds, the feelings lasted long after. He wanted more. Was it the adrenaline rush he wanted? Was it William he wanted? Or was it the peppermint hot chocolate...?

~.w.~

Austin set down his mug of peppermint hot chocolate. He watched the snow fall to the ground outside of the cafe he was in. Wisp was next to him, watching the snowfall with curiosity. One drink... brought all of that back? It was almost eight years later than that night... Why did he only remember it now? Where was William now? What happened in that fire? Why did he forget everything? But, one thing was clear... He now had his answer. It was William he wanted.

END TRANSMISSION
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:49 PM.
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Old 08-18-2017, 10:58 PM   #4
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Togepi MEMORY: MARIE

NEW MEMORY RECOVERED. Estimated time of creation- Late adolescence, middle of puberty.

START TRANSMISSION SEQUENCE

The cabin was quiet, the days long and warm. A calming peacefulness hung in the air, the inhabitants of the house enjoying the lazy summer days. Well, all but one. Austin looked out of the kitchen’s window, seeing the pine trees sway in the breeze. The colors here were so vibrant compared to the dusty grays of Virbank. Even the most mundane of things seemed more lively and vibrant here. It was as if everything was alive.... That everything was breathing. It was something that the city lacked.

He heard footsteps approach, but paid no heed to them. The preteen was spending his summer vacation with Will’s family, along with their friend Keaton. It was just past noon time, everyone was taking this day off to rest from the constant activities that they have been partaking in. His legs still ached from the long hike that they did yesterday. It was beautiful, seeing the Deerling in the trees and a few Braviary and Unfezant flying overhead. The stream they passed had some Ducklett happily swimming, and all around it seemed that the nature around him was actually alive. Virbank didn’t have this energy to it. The smog, the ships and industry. It was a metal prison compared to the freedom the woods offered.

“Hey kiddo, you liking it up here?” A playful voice cooed at him. Turning his head, Austin saw Marietta standing in the doorframe. She yawned before entering kitchen, sleepily stumbling towards the fridge.

“Yeah... It’s so... beautiful,” he responded to her, awe in both his mind and his heart.

“Explains why you’re staring out the window...” she responded before trailing off. He heard her mumbling to herself as she rummaged through the fridge. It was a small, older fridge colored sea green, and could only hold a few things compared to his. It was oddly charming to him. He then heard Marie speak up again.

“Want a glass of nomelaide?” She asked him as she grabbed out the carton of the sweet, citrus-y drink. He nodded in response, and she poured the two of them a drink. Grabbing the glasses, she set one down in front of him then took the seat next to him.

Austin watched her as she drank her glass. Her long hair, normally wavy and volumized, was frizzy and flat. While similar to her younger brother’s, Marietta’s hair was a bit darker. It was something that intrigued Austin, that why the two siblings would have slightly varying shades of the same hair color. The main difference, though, was the purple streak she dyed into her hair. It showed of her mischievous, almost sassy side. It was okay for him, though. She was like a big sister to him, and underneath her trickery and playfulness was a strong, motherly woman who protected both him and William in their times of need.

“Austin, you brought what I got you for christmas last year?” the teen inquired, seeming much more refreshed after her drink.

“Oh, yeah, I did,” he replied.

“Cool. I’m going to go grab it from your bag, okay?” She asked. Seeing him nod in response, she left the kitchen towards the room he was sharing with Will.

Alone once more, the preteen continued to stare out of the window. He would on occasion grab his glass and take a sip of the nomelaide. It was sweet with sour aftertaste, and was one of his more preferred drinks. The nomel berry itself was incredibly sour, with only a small variety of Pokemon eating it naturally. In cooking, however, it is one of the more popular berries to use in certain cuisines. The added a delightful hint of sourness to dishes, with the acidity bringing out the best of certain meats and other berries. Some people even use the berry in desserts, with nomel meringue pie being a popular dessert in Unova.

Setting his glass down, the boy wondered how his family was doing. Bryce was probably bumming his days away with Preston, knowing the two of them. With Marie there, the two really lacked any sense of self-worth or control. Travis was off at some summer camp this year, for kids who had an interest in the culinary arts. The kid seemed to have developed an interest in making his own confectionary after their mother decided to stop buying the giant bags of lollipops. Austin didn’t mind it however, it took stress off of their mother in terms of cooking for the family.

Austin then heard a thud, and saw the coloring set in front of him. Marie gave him a huge grin, looking as if she had triumphantly emerged from the depths of a dark dungeon. William was not a heavy sleeper, so if it wasn’t Austin or Will’s parents, all hell broke loose. From the looks of things, it seemed Marie was victorious in not waking up her little brother while grabbing what she needed from the room. Pulling up a chair, Marie sat next to Austin, and opened the set of crayons. He then picked out one of the coloring books, and opened to a page. There was a scene with a Delibird holding a candy cane, surrounded by various holly flowers and its present bag next to it. It was partially colored, with all of the red colored in.

“Seems you’ve been getting a good eye for color kiddo,” the teenager complimented him, and gave him an affectionate head rub.

“U-Uh thanks. I’m still learning how to try and make it pop though... Could you pass me the Grass Green please?” he asked after taking the compliment. Marie handed him the crayon, and he started working on all of the leaves in the picture.

“Honesty it was just a gut feeling when I saw these crayons on sale and a bunch of cheap coloring books, but I guess I was right after all. They way you color is interesting, and it honestly makes me wonder how you would do with something not as limiting as crayons...” She trailed off again, grabbing her glass of nomelaide and taking a drink.

“Huh?” He paused for a bit. What did she mean by that?

“Wax is a very dominating medium, and it doesn’t allow the blending of colors too well. It’s why they give them to kids. Good quality color pencils allow you to blend the colors and shade more efficiently. I think you’ll be able to do that well,” she answered, giving an explanation to coloring materials. Austin didn’t really get most of the art thing, but he knew Marie was talented and was a bit humbled to see she thought he had talent.

He stayed silent until he completed coloring in the picture. He would only speak up to request colors, where the teen next to him would happily comply and hand him a crayon in return for the one he was using. She continued to talk about colors and their importance in art, that while color can detract from a picture, well placed colors can add a certain pop to a picture that graphite or charcoal couldn’t do alone. Paint was a different story, but that would be saved for a time that wasn’t now.

When he felt accomplished, Austin closed the coloring book and took the colors with him back to the room he was staying in. In relation to the kitchen, it was just down the hall and on the second door to the right. The cabin itself was small, with a living/dining room, kitchen, three bedrooms and a bathroom. The square footage wasn’t that large, so everything was crammed together into a nice, cozy wooden package. Going into his room, Austin saw Willian still sleeping and Keaton staring out the window. He waved towards his darker skinned friend, who gave one back before going back to watch the Pokemon outside. Austin put his things in his bag and tip-toed out, not to wake the sleeping beauty.

As he went to the kitchen, he saw Marie reading a magazine on the couch. Deciding he wanted company, he sat next to her and peeked over her shoulder. It was some teenage magazine on all of the celebrities, but the gossip was still interesting to him. How some people could just televise their entire lives to the entire world, he didn’t know. To him, it was something he never really wanted to happen to him. He liked his own little world, with his friends and family. He didn’t want to break them. It didn’t feel right to him.

“Hey kiddo, what do you want to do with your life?” Marie asked him.

“Huh?”

“I want to be a tattoo artist. I feel it’s interesting, and not everyone is cut out to become a Pokemon trainer. Maybe I’ll eventually catch one or two for the company, but I don’t have dreams to travel the world on foot. I just have some fun, maybe eventually have a family of my own one day. Most of all, I just want to enjoy what time I have,” she spoke, seemingly ignoring him. Her voice was soft, distant. It wasn’t like her, who was usually loud and a bit mischievous.

“I-I don’t know...” Was all he could muster.

“You still have time, don’t worry about it.” She responded with a smile, before going back to read her magazine.

Austin just stared at the clock in silence. What did she mean by that? This felt odd... Why did it feel odd? He suddenly felt tired. He walked to his room, plopped down next to Will, and passed out.

-=w=-

When he came to, Austin saw the familiar walls of his secret base. That was just a dream. Just a dream. Yet, it felt all too real for him. He got up, and saw his Gengar looking at him with worry.

“Hey kid, you were thrashing all night,” she told him.

“It was just a dream Marie. Hey, I- No nevermind,” he responded before cutting himself off. That wasn’t a dream. He felt hollow, empty inside. What was he missing? Were the two the same? No, that would be impossible. It was just a bad dream. It had to be a bad dream. Closing his eyes, Austin returned to sleep. It must’ve been exhaustion, nothing more.

“He knows...” Marie mutters to herself, the usually jovial Gengar in a rare state of melancholy. She continued to watch over him. The kid that was like a brother to her. In time he might be able to fix things. In time.

END TRANSMISSION
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:49 PM.
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Old 06-19-2020, 03:21 PM   #5
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Litwick RITUAL

W̵̻̠̮͒̀́̈͛͆͂̈͘̚͝Å̷̡̘̱̹͚̣̖͚̯͚̥͔͒̇R̸͇̙̫̱͇̱̳͐̉́̓̽͘̚ͅ ͔͖̪̭N̸̩̱̮͙͔͔̬̣̔̈́̔͜Ḯ̶̫̺̤͖͙̰͓͖̰̳̌̌̾̎͌͛̅͗ͅŃ̷̖͜G̷̿̈̎ ̲͔͔̖̲͗̓͌̋̌̀̈́̔̆͌̕͘.̸̧̘̗̼̩͓̪̥̭̃̓̓̒́̔̽̓̓͌̈́͜͝͝ ̷̺̬͕̭̼͙̙̣̋̓̈̈́̊̇̄͠S̴̟̱̠͙̽̐̄͗͆̍̄͂͆͗͆̓́͜͝Y̵̘͎̱̜̜̘̔̀S̵ ̨̡͎̙͉͇͈͚͖̻̲̼̲̙̳̈́́̄͑̓͐͝͝T̸̨̡̜͔̤͙͔͉̙̼̏̑̇̒̐̔͊̔̍̈̃̎͝ͅͅ ̪̫Ę̶̨͚͈͚̳͇̮̼̣͘M̸̛͚͍̤̖͋̌͌͌̌͗͛͌̅̇̂̄̉͜͝ͅ ̵̣̠̩̺͓͇̻̟͍̈Ṣ̷̩͓͚̹͙͐͌̀͊̍̎͆̀̅̕̚͝H̴̩̰̀̌͛̆͋̾̇͝U̸̓̅͛͆̚ ̨̡͎̗͓̭̺̝̘̱͎͚̲͖̎͛͌̽̈́͝Ţ̴̳̬͖̼̗̪͎̙̤̙̆͒̅̚T̷͆̍́̀́̆̌̿͑̕͘ ͓͉̤̬̲̎̌͝Ī̴̡̡̛̞̣̯̹̥̱̩̩̗̜͖̺͛̒̏̈̈́͊̇́̎̽̽̉N̶̟̤͖̩̗̙̪͕͗̅ ̢̝̖͓Ģ̴̨̡͙̱͎͖̦̯̠͎̬͙̼͑̂̆̈́̉͒̓̃̏́̋̃͋́͘ͅ ̷̨̡̧̧̧͙̟̣̦̹͖͚̬̽̌̌͝ͅD̴̨̡̤͚͉̭̮̘̺͊͂̔̊̊̒̿̌̅̄̾̀̒͜͝Ǒ̷̾̔ ͉̮̱͓͓̎̍̎̆̎̈͂̅̄́̀͐W̷̳̝̻͙͕͙̦͇̼̭̲͓̚N̶̡̼̞̜̘̖̬̜̏͌̅̐ͅ.̶̔ ̧̯̳̻̜̞̮͇͜͜ ̶̠͈͈̬̞̮̹̲̞̘̪̰͊͒̀̉͑̐̐̈́͜͝Ẇ̷̢̢̧̬̥̝̟̦͚̪̮̀̎̂͒̎̾͝A̸͊̒̓̋ ͎̻̹͎̝̰͎͔͍̘͑̓̒̿͑̃̃R̴̲͖͇̙̬͙̪̱̙̗̟̯̰͊̌͗͑͝N̵͉͉̿͊͆̀̿̀͗̏̉ ̺I̷̪̪̩̮̓N̸͕͍̘̖̤̘͇̟̥͎̭̱̖͌G̷͉̺̹̜̫͇̗͎̜̑͒͝.̷͓̦͕͂̈́̓̉͒͗̃ ͙̞͓͕̲͚͍̙̹
̷̛̀͌̍̽̿͐͐̈́̚ͅ
̵̨̧͇̭͕̱͎̥̬̤͍͍͈̋̀͜͝M̷̧̢̛̼̥͕͕̺̰̹̫͂́͜Ê̵͖̫̿͗̄͆̌͒͑̃̈́̈͝ ̰̪͉̼͙̜͙̥̮̙̮̫̙M̵͚̰̹͆̈̈́͛̽̀͂̎̆̽͌͘͘͠͝Ơ̴̏̎̀̅̀̀̇̈́͒͂́͘̕͠ ̨͎̖̜͇̬̩̠Ŕ̴̡̞̬̗̩̼̎̒͗̅́̿̈́͌̍͂̏͆̄̕ͅY̸͍͇̲͓̱̖͇̫̮̝̌͜ ̦͎͜ ̴̛̪̯͓̗̱̞̝̻̓̃͂̊͊͊̉͒̕̚F̶̡͍̌͆̈́͘I̷̬͙̣̫̗̒̄̀̊̎̐͂̒͗́̄̒̌̕̕ ̡̭̳̖Ṉ̵̨̙̰̖̲̺͔̞̦̰̎͒͗̿̋̈̋̐̇͜͝Ã̵̫̣̲͖̺̣͇̹͈̳̟̤̿̽̈̈́̈́͝ͅ ͔L̴̢͔͖̠̞̞̦͈̲̪̫̀̐̒̌̓͑͌͗͛͋̀̍̅͝.̵̫̝̟̯̦̺́̽͗̊̑͆̈́͜
̵̢͖̳͈̮̒̋͛̆́̈́̑̒͘͘͝ͅ
̶̛̱͎̼̜̘̥͕̲͈͙͙̏́̋͑͌͆̚͝͝͠ͅN̵͍͇͕̭̩̔̋Ǫ̸̡̛̺̩̗̬̼͙̠̿̋̂̊̉ ͕ ̷̫̙͈̬͖͓̑́́͆̓̃̀̒̒̂̃͗̈́͆̉F̸̗̙̖̠̀͗̀̾̋̂͌́̉͝U̵͗̎̒̐̑͊́̂̕͜ ̖͈͍R̶̢̳̮̼͈̝̞͎͔͋͌̋̐͒̕T̴̨̞͕̫̯͓͐̽̍̈́͆̔͋̈́̏̌̐̓̃H̸͋͂̽̐̈́̽̐ ̺͕̠̼͉̜̠̻̻̂́̿̅Ȩ̶͈͓͈̲̜̦͓́̍͑̈́͜͝R̴̨̡̹͎̣̥̻͍̳̆̀̓͗͜ ̵̬̭̮͎̲̺͖͉̟̌̆͋̋̀̀̊͗̈́̀̋̎͒̽͘M̸̨͉̥͔̖̙̟̟̈̿̏̀̓́͗̅̕͝ͅE̸̋̔ ͔̭M̴͇̝̻̖͉̱̰͙̘͙̀̒̓ͅO̷̲̼̣̱̲̞̼͇̔͐͂̃͒̐͐̏̈́̾͒̒͘͝R̵̄̈́̒̇͑͝ ̢̢͈̟̳̻̟̤̯̟̳̈́͑ͅI̵͉̬̿̈́̑͂͒̃̽͂̿̿̐͌̕͜͝͝E̶͓̩̍̈́̄̓̂̏S̴̛̮̅ ̧̤̬͇̺̥̮ͅ ̴̧̳͓̥̰̦̲̖̘̦̲͔͍͖͚̿̀̆C̷̼͎̤̞͇̾͆̇̅̽̂̎̄͑̔̎ͅA̵̡̍̎͂̑̎̈́͘͝͝ ̢̨̡͇̬̣̠̰̳̠N̸̢̪̣̤̲̞̰̦̈́͂̏͑̄́͋̔̇͛̅͘͝͝ ̶͖̲̹̣̤͍͐̃̓͋̋̈̅̇̈̕B̶̮͎̫̫̦̯̘̠̣̣̪͖̉̋̓̄̽͐̒͝͠͠E̷̯͘ ̶̡̧̛̟̟͕͇̪̞͚̺͌̉̓͋̕͝Ć̵͙͛̈́̒͆̍̈́͊̐̕̚͘͝R̶͙̖̙͖̈́͛̓̀͘Ë̴̛́͋ ̧͖̭̩̪̕͜A̵̧̡̛̩̠̼̭̩̫̲̘͒̅̒̀͑̈́̊̂̾́͑̕ͅT̷̛̗̰̎̔̏̔̀̓̓̓̓̚͝͝ ̨͕͓͍͕̬̦̖͇̗ͅË̶̙͉͗͆́̄̋̀͛͋̐͗̇D̵̨͚̬͔̤̱̤̳̮͉̈̅͒̒͆́̽͆̕͜ͅ ̰.̶̪̺̬̣͇̲̫̰̜̼̹̫̪̂̎̐͑̀̆̂̌͂̈́̿͆͘͜͝ ̸̫͍͔̘͍̯̹̥̠̐̐̊̕̕͜ͅ

If this was to be the end, then so be it. For all the months he searched, barely anything came since that dream. It felt that even the memories he had made now were fading fast. He was running out of time, he knew that much. His body was weakening... Almost to the point of deterioration. Usually he was able to make a journey like this with ease, but now? It felt almost impossible. Just getting to this place took its toll. He felt that he was displaced out of time. His trip to the past didn’t exactly help his failing body, either. The sickness from Christmas... It ebbed and flowed but never went away. He was dying, and this was the only way he could finish... Finish what he was searching for.

Austin looked at the wooden cabin with a sense of pained nostalgia. This beautiful cabin where he spent his summers was now old and decrepit. After all, with Will’s immediate family dead and those that lived weren’t in Unova, it became lost to time. Yet, it was the place he needed to conduct this ritual. It was the only place he could conduct it. This was the only place still left of his old life. His old house was sold to another, and Will’s burned down. Burned to cinders... Fire was as beautiful as it was deadly. Was that why he had such a strange obsession with fire? No... He didn’t want the fire to destroy, but to cleanse.

Making his way up the porch, he heard it creak and moan as he ascended it. It was at least in good enough condition, but the years of being left to rot showed. What was once beautiful wood, polished and kept after, was now tarnished and filled with decay. As such was the body, something made to be beautiful but breaks down in time. In a sense, it was sad. Time is supposed to heal all wounds, but it ends up killing everything. Not that it mattered now... It was his time to end.

He looked around for something, anything that might have a hint towards what he was going to do. That’s when he saw it, a floor board that seemed eerily new. Making his way towards it, the raven haired brunette lifted up the board to see a switch. His hand trembles as he reaches out and pulls it, using all of his might to do so. He slumps down, exhausted after pulling a single switch. How pathetic was that, really? Yet, the fruit of his labour soon bore, as a hidden passageway made itself known.

Mustering the strength to get up, Austin limped towards the passageway. He could feel his leg decaying now, and the pain was excruciating. But that didn’t matter now, even if his body broke he would fulfill his goal. He reached the top, and looked down the stairs of the tunnel. This was going to be a pain in the ass to get done, but it no longer mattered. He took his first step forward, and felt his leg give out as he did so. He tumbled down the stairs for what seemed like hours before hitting cold stone.

Looking up, the room was filled with monitors and tubes. It was oddly scientific and a bit... ethereal. Yes, this would work.

“Took you long enough,” he heard a voice. Looking towards it, he saw a chair turn around. He couldn’t make out exactly what the figure was, and the voice itself was distorted.

The figure moved towards him, and extended a hand. Looking at what he assumed would be its face was just... void. He could see nothing, Was he no longer able to perceive reality? No, this person seemed to exist out of it entirely. He grabbed their hand, and felt a frigid cold and a blazing heat at the same time. This... this was something that shouldn’t exist.
“Who... are... you?” he asked, gasping for air between every word.

“What, you don’t recognize me? That’s rude! After all, I-” the rest of the speech was incomprehensible to him. It was the sound of television static, mixed with nuances of the elder gods. Unintelligible whispers that rolled off his ear and pierced through his mind.

“Well, with that out of the way, let’s get this done with,” they said, and hoisted him up.

He was then dragged to the middle of the room and placed within a magical circle. Candles were placed around him to form the points of a star, and chalk was drawn over his body. The circle was made, and a searing pain arose from the depths of his very soul. It felt his life essence was fading away at this point. But, this needed to be done. This was the only way... to save them. To find them. To... to... He no longer could think. Feel. Exist. His soul felt like it was lost to the void.

-=w=-

The figure watched as the boy was sapped away. It was sad, after all, but this needed to be done. His borrowed time was up, and he wasn’t even close to figuring out what happened. It was a shame really, but he was still needed. He was still going to be alive after this. Just in stasis. The melancholy was comforting, after all. Watching him was starting to get boring anyways, so it was a good idea to make a backup.

With the ritual almost completed now, all that was let was to create it. Taking a few bottles, all contents indescribable, the figure poured them into one of the giant, green tubes. They then took a knife, and went towards the boy. Taking his right hand, they pricked the pinky finger and drew blood into a little vial. That too was added into the mixture.

Homunculi were very, very fickle in their creation. Only a few actually were able to exist after being created, but it didn’t really matter now did it? This was going to work, It would take time, and they’d need to leave here before it awakened. Finding a piece of paper, the figure scribbled a few things onto it. It would instruct the homunculus and leave it in a state of mindlessness until the orders were fulfilled. If it knew what was actually going on, this entire plan could fail. Though, this would also programm it with false memories of its life. But, it would also have access to all of Austin’s memories. This would work.

“Now, there’s only one thing left to do.”

-=w=-

Austin felt a tug, as if something was anchoring him back into existence. He felt like he was surrounded by a warmth that was enveloping his entire body. It was warm and inviting.


-̴̨̨̤̺̮͉̘͎͔̒̆́̅̇̔̆́̓͝-̴̧̰͉͓̗͕̣̦̉̀̏̅̆̈̒̎-̵̛͔͉̹͍̗̭̒̌̄̂͛-̸̨̜̱̠͕͖̬̯̗̠́̚̚-̸͈̮̯̫̱̖͔̮̮̗͍̌-̸̧̨̤̙͚̖̘̥̮͖̹̫̣́̇̐̀̅̓̾̈́͋͆̉̅̈́͝ͅ-̸̮͎̘̪̞̼̠͈̗̗̔̄̂́́͝ͅͅ-̸͇̻̪̹̣̖͕̫̮̍͗̃̒͛͌̏̒̌́͝-̵̮̼̪͚̙͍̀̀̾̋͆͜-̴̻̫̤̼̋͗́̓̈́͆́͑̑̈́̀̕-̷̡̳̜͇̗̊̎͑̓͊͌̀͑͒͐͝-̸̫̘̞̳̫͛̂̇̽̊͝ͅ-̶̹̼̠͈̺̘̦͈͈̺̜̿͠͝ͅ-̵̫̾͐͊̽͒̀̿̇̂̿͘-̷̧̳̜̘̞͚̹͇̗̫͎̪̓͐̀̓̅̓̇ͅ-̵̗͓̹̫̜͙̲͔͚̲̝̑̀́-̸̨̧̛̝͈̜͉͍̳̟̲̻̩͉̆͌̓͐͛̚͜-̶̧̞̜͖̤͈̬̰̄͗͛̈́̾͑̾̎̌́͘̚͝͝-̴͚͖͖̈́̈́̀̌͘-̶͈̦̰̱̣̲͙̋̌̀͠͝͝-̶̨̨̫̱̬͓̩͓̰͙̗̉-̷̢̺̃̎-̸̰̟̞̤̇͌͝-̶̣̪̫̖̝͇͈̲̎̅̔̀̈̐̍͋͆͝-̶͕̤͍̟̪̦̣̼̱̀͋͒̿-̸̢̡̪̭̗̹̥̻̗͂͋́̄̎̓̑̉́̉̒̈́̐͘͠-̸͙̳͚̯͑̉̽́̊̉̂̇̐̑͘͜-̸̡̧̨̡̝̭̰̼̫̭̼͌̈́̎̆́͜͜͜-̶̨̢̩̳̼̗͖͇͚̓͐̽͒̊͘͜-̴̧̨̻̜͇̗͈̹͓̮̠̭̼̰͛́̎̽̃̀͐̄̚-̸̱̣̱̲̤̯̾̾̒́̀͌̀̈́-̸̛̯̫͍͈̗̼̉̂̈́̍͆̓̒̒͊̔̚͘-̶̫͖̟̅͑͑̆̌͘-̶̨͇̣̲̖͚̞͎̣͛̓̏̌̄͜ͅ-̶̟̜̱͍̱̞͇̘͍̫͒͐̊͐̌͛ͅ-̵̤̎̈́̌͐̓̅̕-̵̦̯̼̥̫̮͉̻̯͒̍͜-̸̢̻̳̫̮̑͋̌̅̍͘-̷̢̧̺͍̭̣̗̘̤͎̝̀̃̂́͘-̷̹̘͕͓͎͔̫͇̰̈́̈́̇̅͜͜-̴̨̩̠͓͇̻̗͉̲̞͖̝͈͎͂̂͗̀̅̕͜-̵̡͕͈̻̘̹̺͘ͅ-̵̧̧͇͓̠̱͕̠̣̻͙͕̳̹̆̿̃̈́̽͆̀̑̔͂͘-̸̡̣̙̱̭̙͚͈̱͎͔̆͒͌̒̆̌͝͝-̸̖̤̣̳͔̍́̒̔̊̎͂́̔-̴̘̥̗͎̯̪̞̻̠̙̖͗̀̀͜ͅͅͅ-̴̖͚͓̤͚̘̫̞̓̈̔̽̐̔̊̾̌͘͝ͅ-̸̢͇̰͍̠̰̖̓͂-̶̨̛͓͍̩͇̩̙͖͕͈̳̚-̸̧̙͔̦͖̭͔̻̦̮̀̇͋̅̈́̓̈́̇͝͝-̷̛̹͈͓̩̪̪͇̈́̐̂̾̐̎̓̐̆̉͘-̴̧̝̼͙͈̩̘͛̀͌̌͋-̷̨͒̏͒̃̓̿̽̓̐̓̽͗͘-̵̰̲̐̑̒͑͂̒̂͆̉̏̈́̑̉̚͠-̴̡̡͈̭̗̮̙̘͌̐͆̋̍̚ͅ-̸̣̖̦̹͎̣͚̙̋̔͆-̶̢̧͕̜̠̣̹̟̮̣̤͗̃̑̈̄̌̑͑̚͜-̶̧̢̢̩̫̩̲̯̺̘̠̱͖͗̇̾͌̅̿̏̑̏̂̃̈́̚-̷̳̙̠͇́̅̂̾͛̋͒̓͒-̸̢̧͔͙͚̮̫͍̰̙̬̤̹͙͈̓̒͗̽͗͌-̷̢̱͓̰̠̗͉͕͙̱̅̃̍̋̍̌̈́̄̐̌̄̀̇͊ͅ-̸͈̺̯̠͍̣̒͒͌-̷̛̛͙͓̙̺̟̀̔͌̈̌͊̈́̓̓̿͘͠ͅ-̵̨̥̳͈̬̜̯̱͉̙̠̠̋͝ͅ-̷̧̭̙̜̩̭̈́͑͒̓̇̽̊̓̎͘̚-̴̨̳̯̝͎̯̯͈̘͙̔̽͋̎̌̓͜-̴̡̯͖͎͉͓͕̻̭͙̔͌-̶̢̣͍̳̹̹͚̖͚̿̀̂͛́̎̓͜͠͝͝.̴͙̀̑́́̾̌̃̈̒ ̵̡͙̤̼̤̯͙͎̺̯͗̔̆̒͗̓̌͠͝͝-̷̢͕̰̫̼̭̦̣̖̠͉̬̳̺̾͑̈́͌͜-̷̞̐͆̌̈́̄̍͒͑͘-̸̢̨͇͚͉̖̯̣̞̏͌̀͗͐́̚͝-̵̟̘͚̟͎̩̝̪̭̜̞͊̉̓̀̒̎͘͝-̷̧̰̭͕̳͈̤̬͎͆̾̈̎͆͂͗̀͋̈́̄-̴̟̙̌̽̉͒̔̊̅̔̉̌̌͝͝͝ͅ-̴̘͋͗̎-̷̡̨̛͕͎̘͖̫͍̞̰̪̳͈̥͎̿̔͑͑̃͋̅̎͘͝-̵̧̢̡̛̤̗̦̩͈̲͍̝̟͌̑̐́̐͆̀̒͛̐̂͘͜͝͝ͅ-̸̣̤̬͂̌̅̈́̈̃̂̚͘͝-̴͍̰͚̜̹̙͆-̷̮̒-̷͖̹͉̖̺̝̭̫̦̞̫͙͎͇͔͊̓̈̔-̷̼͉̜͇̙̪̐̒̍͆̾̎̄͠-̸̨̢̡͓̲̯̗͈̳͉̲̱̟̽̈̽̈́̀͑̿̀͆̊͘̕͝ͅ-̵̧̨̨͖͇̰͚̣͔̩̜̱͓̥̭̈́̈́̓͑̀͊̒̂̕͘͝-̷̙̠͍̭̟̮̬͒̀́͌̄͐̈́̔̃̈̕͜͝-̵̳̤̤͕̜̥̯͚͙̀̈́-̶͖̼͚͇͉̠̰̜͚̰̟̖͕͎̃̀̽͝͝ͅ-̶̪̤͈͖̥̫͚̣͖͖͔͈̲̄̄̓͆̿-̴̧͇͉̯̗̯̘̞̝̘̠̺̝͛̊͋̾͗̽̅̾̽̎̕͝-̶̞̺̜̣͛́̑̒̾̇́̍̔-̵̨̛̤̳̖̜̤̭̯̖͖̞͌̊̚-̴̧̧̙̰̜̳̯͕͕͓̼̼̌̍̚͠-̴̡̧͎͉̻̗̭͓͍̮̥̪͖͌͆͐̂̀́͒̂̿̅͠͝-̵̭̠̜͈̗̞̼̰̬̘͗̿̋̀ͅ-̷͔͎̑͋͛̃̅͠-̶̭̜̟͙͈̳̳͚̠̥̗͚͈̈́̾̂̀̉͘͠͠͝-̵̨̢̤͚̤͓̳̼͖͓͎̬͊͂̐͂̽̎̐̇̄͌͜͝͝-̵͕̮̻̯̈́̉̃̋̔͗͋̃̋-̵̡̨̛͖̱̬̬͔͍͎̟̻̞̞̇̂͐́̀̿͊͌̃̈̾̈́͘͠ͅ-̵͕̱̠͂̈́̎̔͑̑̏̽̂͘͘͜-̴̡̮̟͚̥͓̱̳̹̹̓͜-̵̡̡̛̭͉̻̦̲̤̯͔̙̖̪͋̅͒͠͝-̸̠̳̽̈͛̈͒͋́̚-̵̡̧̻̥̗̖̎̀͑͌͂͋̉͐́̔̋̚-̴̡̭̮̜̥̹̗̖͕̱̦̜̳̞̱̂͂͐͠-̵̦̘̭̩̙̹̬͊-̴̪̪͙̺͙̮̣͇̝̹͈̖͇̋̈́͘ͅ-̶̢̧͔̟̩̖̞͈͓̜̀̍͂͌̈́͑̐͋̐̎͜͝-̸̜͗͒̕-̶̢̪̯̫̗̹̇̓̑̂̉̀̕-̴̢̨̘̯̹͓̞̖̖͕̫͕̋̎̊̐͑̕͠-̴̧̻͖͇̹̲͖̳̦̼͉̜͓̗̽̏́̎͆̒͐̈̈́̏͘͘͜͝.̶͚̪̼̥̪̜͎̯͖̽̈͛̂͑̿͂̅̌̚ ̡̳͜ ̵̮͍͇̳͍̮͇̬̮̤̬̳͇̍͝-̵̢̨̛͈̗̟̦̼͔͇͙͓̬̲̅͆̅̿̉̄̈̄͂̔̅͛̕͜͝-̷̨̦̦͇͉͇͖̈́̑̔͐̏̐͘͠͠ͅ-̵̜̱͈̇̍-̸̧̛̺͉͎̪̫͖̥͈̝̂̿̀̍͌̕͘͜͝-̷̱͔͕̘̥̺͓̻̫̜̒̾́͆͊̈́̅̃́͝-̷̨͚̳̹̹͓̜̞̭̤͓̘͉͙̓-̸̢̢͍̘̙͚̖̲̖̪̣̣̀̈̓̆̒͆̉̈́̄͘͜͝ͅ-̷̛͓̗̜̼̺̫̰̗̻̺̦̖̳̈̂̒͆͘̚͝-̵̝͉͌̐́̅̾̌̎̑͗̒̍̈́̓͠-̶̩̦̠͙̠̳͔͐͜-̶̧͇͓͓͍̭̤̦͐̏͋͋̆͌͜͝-̸̧̬̟̯͖̭̦̳͇̲̠̦͖͈̳̇̈́̋͊͒̌̄́͆̓̔͛̓͗͠-̶̭̪̈́͋͆̐̑̊̓̇̅̋̓̕-̷̢̤̭̘̘̺̻̗͓͕͒̾̾̾͊͌̑͐̌̓͐̎͗̔̒-̷̞̬͍̦̰̞͉͈̟̥̋-̵̨͖̰̤͔̻͓̽̐̋́̈́̾̕̚̕͠-̴͔̙̲͈͔͋̒-̵̨̦̖̹͙̜̻͍̮͎̙̂̅-̵̦͙̓̈́̀͌̆̈̓̀̍͐͌̓̓̚͘-̸̡̡̺̘̱͍̙̈́-̴̣̣̪͔̫̫̝̟͔́̉͐̃̌̔̀̋͌̇̓͂͂̾̕͜ͅ.̶̛̹͕̼̫̏̆̓̉͂̀̐͌̑̈͘̚ ̞̝ ̸̨̛̳̻͍̼͇̂͌̇̔̇͑̊̌̽̿ͅ
̴̺̌̐͝
̸̛̛̞̤͉̹̜̹̟͕̗̜͔̈́̋̀͂̿͑̂̑̍̉̅̄͠[̷̙͔͖͆̂́̃D̵̨͍̻͖̖̦̲̜̩͚̯̂̄̉̃̿̏͛͑͝A̶̡̢̳̺̪̜͒̈͗́̊̓̂̎̔͆N̷ ̧̙͇̠̳̞͍͖̂̓͛̅̈́̊̒̑̏̽̽́̑̕ͅG̷͙̟̘͍̭͕͙̘̝̝̘̗̞̲͘͜E̸̟̥̩̿͜R̴ ̨̧̡̺͈̮͉̝̠̳̖̬͕̀̈́̊̂̿͊͂̈́̇́̊̿̑̕͝]̴͖͓̲̱̪͙̮͕̜͎͋͛̒̽͆̑̽͛͛̊̆̕͠
̷̎̀̓̚ͅ
̶̧̛͎̬̙͈͈͎͈̭͇͈̓̿͂[̶͓̜͙̖̾̂͗̔̽͝S̶̢̧̧̼̩̯̙͔̳̜̈̄Ÿ̷̡̡̛͈̟͉̣̗̦̜̮̥́͑Ş̴͔̠̬̎͜T ̷̱̜̮̬͖̙̬͚̬͉̯͒͌̈͂̄̊̿͐̿͆̈̚͝Ě̴̛̛̯̳̩͍̹̤͐͘̚͠M̵̔̐̌̉̃͊̿͑ ̨͇͙̼̺̱͇͒̌ ̶̱̘͗̎͋͒̓͛̓̈̆͊̀̿͐̍͝F̴̡̭̯̰̮͔̻̍̎̌́́͝͠A̷̛̠͈̍̿͐̓̍̄͗̌͘̕̕ ͙͚Ḭ̶͙͂́̔͐̐L̸̡̡̝̻̦̮̳̰̤̩̰̤̦̬̦̍͛̇͝U̷͉̟̳̼̜̺͙̭̒͋̐̊̓̓̄̚ R̸͖̞͔̞̦̩̻͒͊̚Ȩ̷̲͙̾͒͐̃̓̓̅͘.̵̡̧̘̤̍́̈̉̒̂̌̇̒̌̊͘ͅ]̵̰̘̗͈͕̠̅̒͛͋̑́̒̅͊̑͘͝ͅ
̶̻̭̬͉̩̣͔͙̦̽̍̒͒͘͝


He was ready.


[̸͔̻͈͙̮̈̓̉̈́̈̏͆͊̓̃̊S̸̛̛̭͌͐̍̊̍͗̀̏̌̄̈́̄͝Y̷̩̽̾͋̌̅͆̀̄̂͘S̶ ̧͇͖̱̝͓͉̍͑́͆̾̽͝Ț̸̡͇̊̀̊́̏̇̽̊̽̈́̚͘E̴͚͚͌͆͋̓̆͋͌̏̑̉̔͗̓͘͘ ͙̱̳͖͚̮͙̦̳ͅͅͅM̵̻̱̺͖͙̠͙̠̯̞̣̞͗̐̅̋͌̽̇͒̑͝͝ ̷̨̢̢͚̦̰̺̭̮̠͕͇͉͓͒̍̂̀͌̂͒͆̾͊͑̕͜͝͝S̴̯̝͎̳̠͖̭̈́̑̕H̸̀̈̅̑̈͊ ̡̬̘̺̤̩̺͋͜͝U̷̥̘̼̞̟̪̽̔͗́̀͌̈́̀̆̍̉͘̕͝T̶̨͈̦̦̟̠̱̊͐̒̒̈́̏̒̓̆ ̧̺͎̤̲͈̠T̶̢̡͖͍̻̦͇͖̤̫̯̆͝Ḯ̸̢̛̳̼̰̩̰͔̞͉͈͉͉̝̘̎̄̽̒̀̅́̅͜N ̸̨̛̝̻͚̞̘̥̭͉̩̥͐̌́̂̽͛̚G̸̡̻͖͔̘̙̠̤͚̥̾̆̀̓͐ ̸͎̘̳͈̆̂̈́͌D̶̺̜̥̦͓̫͔̾̓Ǒ̷͎̞̬͓̻̘̤̭̯̈́͜͝W̵̥̬͈̯̏̀̏̀̅̾̈́̄͘ ͅṆ̷̨̡͕̲̟̦͍͚̝̫̔̃́̍̍́͝ͅ]̶̧̧͔̙̝͇͎͉͍̟͔̺̦̤̼̓͑͂̿̅̀̏͋͒͝
̷̼͖̜̹̮̻͔̱̰̳̗̱̺̮͊͛͛͌͋̔̈́̊̕̕


At last.


[̴̢̮̺͓̱͍͍̞̺͔͊Ç̸̧̨̻̭̭̬̝̝̬̗͚͛̉͒͌͒̃̐̐͠R̴͒́̈́̐́͂͊̆̇͂̓͌̂ ̧̱͚͓̜̼̼͇̱̝͕̊͠Į̸̺̱̫̰͓̯͓̖̙͍̲͉̱̇̏̒͑̍̀̅̒͠T̷̛̛͌̄̈́̍̐̂̋͝ ̨̞͎̜̺̦͓̳̰͈͕̎̀Ḯ̵͙̱͔̜̥̟̜̬̿̐́̈́̐͠Ĉ̴̡̝͚̟̠͙̞̫̈̽͛͂̆͝A̶͆ ̧̨̻͙͕̖͕̖̞͎͕̣̀̆͌͆̀̊L̸͚͎̖̝͙͈͈̮͓̰̰̦̉̈͆͊ ̸̯̰͇̱͙̼̙͉̮̫͓̬̼͖̽͘ͅE̷͉͎̦̟̼̊̌͋̏͊̿͑͛́̌͊̏͘͠͝ͅȐ̴͗̏́͌͋̕ ̨̡̭̗̰̠̙͓̮͚̹͍̖̞̓̈͊͆̚ͅR̶̡͈͔̱̹̞͍̻̳͇̒͋̾̊̕Ȯ̷̢͇͋͆̽͋͛̄̚͠ Ŕ̷̢̺̲͓̲͕̖͓̰̼̭̖̮̗͆̀̏ͅ.̵̨̨͚̮͙̹̭̗̠̖̇̿̌̈̏͜͝͝]̸͇̙̱̜̦̰̼̥̐̑̔̊̓́̆̽͆͛̅̃̽͌
̶̮̊̈


It was time... to finally... Sleep.

__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:49 PM.
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Old 07-08-2021, 01:49 PM   #6
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Togepi Rain

It was a quiet morning in the City of Pentacles. It was just a little bit past six, and the alarm was ringing through his ears. He awoke, looking up at the blank ceiling, and stared with hazy eyes. Blinking a few times, he turns towards the wall and covers his head with a pillow. It was always too damn early to deal with that alarm, but if he didn’t have it then he’d never get anything done.

After ten minutes of trying to, and failing, to sleep through the alarm he got up. Swiping at it, he sets the alarm to dismissed and starts to get up. Looking at the pale room, it was filled to the brim with random objects. Things from his adventures, things from his past, things for his job: all things necessary to him as a person. These things were his memories given shape and form and defined him.

Looking out the window, Leo could see storm clouds forming on the horizon. It was going to rain again. And then the city truly would feel like home. Sitting down at his desk, he mulled over the idea of opening his laptop but opted to just stare out the window. There was a sense of serenity before the rain, A calm that was only gentle to him as it wreaked havoc on everyone else. The last time he felt like this was ages ago... The day he had properly met the Togetic who’d become his life-long friend.

---

Once the sun used to shine here. That’s what his parents had told him, at least. The sun was a weird idea to him, and every time he was taken to Malie he’d feel blinded. He hated the sun, it was warm and bright. Nothing like the moon, whose light was gentle and cooling. And on the nights where it would break through the clouds, the full moon would gaze into his window. The light of Lunala was what illuminated his life, not the harsh blaze that Solgaleo gave.

But, the sun wasn’t here anymore. Not in this rainy town cursed by Tapu Bulu. Whoever angered the island guardian was lost to time, but their deeds remained in the form of rain. It was always raining here, to the point where only the natural crops could grow. Still, this place was a respite for the rich who wanted to escape the hustle and bustle of the coast. A gem, hidden away by the torrential downpour.

But for him, he’d been here his entire life. Each day the rain would wake him, and each day the rain would lull him to sleep. Their entire life was surrounded by this rain, a place to drown out your sadness and loneliness. Most of the people who lived here hated the rain, but he didn’t. He was the only one who loved it.

The life of a spoiled brat who got what he wanted, for the only things he wanted was the rain and the shine of the moon. He was content with what he had, as long as he would be able to stay here in the rain. There was no need for friends... His only friend was always there. He was the child of Po Town, who so adamantly stayed behind even when the rest of the children were gone for the year.

It wasn’t easy on his parents, raising a child who refused to leave town. But, he didn’t really love them that much. He was their burden, hoisted onto them by immaturity and mistakes. His parents never loved each other, and only saw him as a reminder of past mistakes. But, they wished to stay. TO prove that they were worthy of their lot in life. Not like that truly mattered.

And on days like these, well, it never really helped. The falsity of gifts and tradition in an empty house of rules. The place was lit up, filled with presents and decorations. On the day of his birth, they tried so hard to celebrate. As if convincing themselves that this family was still worth it all. It wasn’t, they all knew this, but they tried so hard anyway. To continue living this lie.

But, the birthday didn’t matter. It came and went. All that remained at the end of the day was a Pokemon Egg, given to him as a whim. There was something about the egg that enamored him. A sense of calm washed over him, as he held this egg. It was warm, warm like the moon. He held it close the entire time, until the time of night.

In this quiet, that’s when the chaos began. A young, white-haired man led a group of people to raid the village. Vandalize it. Destroy it. Spit on the sight of the rich and showcase the power of this “team” he created. Nothing more than a band of hooligans and misfits fighting authority. All the boy could do was watch, holding the egg, as people started to come into their home.

His parents, of course, weren’t trainers, and could only watch in terror as things started to get beat up. They started to frantically pack, and take all of their valuables with him. But Leo just watched, holding the egg, as these people tore up his house and spray painted the walls. There were people of all ages, from those suffering a middle-age crisis to a boy no much more than two or three years his senior.

Clutching the egg, he walked from his room into the living room. There was a sort of bond here, something that actually felt like family. His mother frantically ran up to him, telling him they needed to leave. He shook his head and stared her directly in the eyes.

“I’m not leaving!” he shouted, clutching the egg even tighter.

Everyone in the room stopped at his outburst. He was no more than eight years old, but still had the audacity to stand up to his parents. The woman just looked at him, the woman he called his mother, with disdain. This was out of a sense of duty, not love. He knew that and didn’t want to go.

“All you and dad do is play pretend the entire time. Are you even happy here?” the child continued, his questions more pointed. His mother recoiled for a second, before shaking her head. She knew her son was right.

Giving the boy a quick hug, she ran back into the room before running out with a suitcase of her own. Tears on her eyes, grin on her face. An opportunity of freedom, and the last time he ever saw her. Running out of the house, frantic and renewed.

The rest of the people in the room just looked straight at him, confused. This kid had the guts to stand up to his own parents. They stopped and stopped. Instead, they made their way into his parent’s room and came out hoisting up his father. Thrown out of Po Town, and never to be seen again.

And soon, he was alone in this house. A house purged of lies and unhappiness. Just him, and the egg. The egg felt warmer than before like the Pokemon within was waiting to burst forth. Sitting with the egg, the child watched as it slowly started to crack open. And then, with beautiful light, a Pokemon was born under the Alolan moon.

A Togepi, rare for the region, began looking around before looking at the boy. He was in awe, seeing the Pokemon hatch before him. Both of them had shed the shell of what was holding them and were together in this strange world. A sort of mutual understanding immediately occurred, and the Togepi jumped into the boy’s arms.

“Hi, my name’s Leo!” he exclaimed to the Pokemon, the happy, cheerful tone foreign to him.

“Toge!” the Pokemon responded with a chirp, before nuzzling itself into the boy’s arms.

And that was just the start of many zany adventures the duo had. Being able to stay with Team Skull, and having proven himself to join them by his actions. He was the baby of the bunch and was cared for by everyone. As the years went by, he soon started to care for others in the same way, even if he often stayed behind. But whenever a grunt came back, the Grunt in the Kitchen with curly orange hair and a Togepi was always there to cheer them up after a long day.

---

“Everything happened so fast... But, it felt like a lifetime,” Leo muttered to himself, snapping back.

At this point, Custard started to fly in to check on his trainer. Glasses in hand, the Pokemon handed his trainer everything he needed. Leo put on the glasses and then immediately grabbed the Togetic, pulling him into an embrace.

“Do you remember how we first met? It was a rainy day like this,” Leo asked, and the Togetic nodded. It’s been well over a decade, but it still was heartwarming knowing Custard could remember his first day alive.

“We should go back one day... See what that rain has left for us,” Leo muttered, and he got a chirp in agreement. And with that, all he could hear for the rest of the day was the sound of Po’s rain.
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:48 PM.
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Old 11-05-2021, 10:20 AM   #7
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Litwick Awakening

The breeze was picking up today, causing the long grass to sway and fro. He felt his face tickled by the sensation, and it woke him up. The skies were blue, slightly cloudy as the white puffs floated by. Cottonee floated through the air, spreading their cotton spores across the windswept field. This was nice... Yet, the question was where was he? He couldn’t remember.

The thing that interested him, though, was a medium-sized orange creature suddenly peering over him. What was this...thing? He couldn’t remember. No, he did. This was Lucas. His starter Pokemon, the Raichu who stuck with him through thick and thin. There were many places they had been, all across this region. Yet, the name... The name escaped him.

“Where am I?” he spoke allowed, the sensation strange. Surely, he had spoken in the past. Was this not the first time he spoke? He knew not.

“Lucas, do you know?” he asked the Raichu, who shook his head in response. A resounding “no”. Well, that was great, wasn’t it? Where was this place?

As he got up, he realized one other thing. He was only in his underwear. No clothes, no bag, nothing. That was extremely odd. Too odd. For what purpose was he here, and why? He... He couldn’t remember. He remembered most of his life incredibly clear. Yet, he couldn’t remember how he got here. The last thing he remembered was fighting... fighting something and getting knocked out.

Getting up, he felt his head hurt. Visions of a life not his, a life that recognized this landscape. This place, this place was called “Floccessy Ranch.” A place where ranchers in the southeastern peninsula raised Mareep in order to provide wool for the rest of the region. Wools that would be processed into warm cloth to be processed into coverings and apparel.

He pushed himself up, sitting on the ground to further examine his surroundings. There were a few Mareep starting to roll in, along with a rancher heading towards him. Well, this was great. He was incredibly indecent right now and stranded with his Raichu. Wait, where was the Pokemon’s ball? That was, incredibly odd. He felt around the grass and managed to find the object. Okay, cool, so he still had that. A further shift around, he felt his wallet. Good, he had identification as well. He wasn’t a complete enigma, was he?

“Hey! What are you doing out here?” he heard the rancher shout out towards him.

He tried to get up, or respond, but felt a jolt crawl up his spine. His legs felt paralyzed, and he look down towards them. A red, glowing brand that was in searing pain. A mark of some kind... A pact of some kind. He knew that much, but not the reason for it. All he knew was that he was stuck here, and just had to wait for the guy to come closer to him.

Younger, for sure, most likely late teens or early twenties. Messy, dirty blonde hair, sunkissed face, and dark brown eyes. Olive green coveralls with a slate gray workshirt showing underneath. He had a red bandana wrapped around his neck, with a very clear white Pokeball design hanging from the tip. From the looks of it, he was a Pokemon Breeder who was employed here, most likely in charge of the Mareep.

The Breeder got closer and offered out a hand. Was it that obvious that he couldn’t get up on his own merit? Whatever... Help was help. Even he knew that it was a bad idea to reject it at this time, lest he be stuck here forever. The man reached out and grabbed the hand, using it as leverage to get up despite the searing pain.

As he got up, he notice the opposing man look over him, blushing profusely as he looked down. The barely-clothed trainer watched as the over-covered his face, trying not to look. Guess it would be kind of hard to make it out considering he was half-buried in the long grass. He didn’t really care or see what the issue was.

“I just thought you were shirtless and resting after a run or something... Uh, please put some clothes on,” the breeder told him, tone a mix of embarrassment and curiosity.

Yet, he couldn’t respond. Words got caught in his throat, as the pain he was enduring was more than he could bear. While his dull, yellow eyes showed nothing, his face perfectly stoic, inside he was being torn apart. Nothing he could do but wait until he could speak.

“Uh, hello? Guess you’re unable to speak for some reason? The name is Avery. Nice to meet ya, I guess...” the breeder responded, starting to look towards the side to obviously avoid the sight in front of him. The trainer watched as Avery shifted his gaze towards Lucas, the Raichu finally popping out of the grass.

“Ethan,” the trainer managed to respond, the words searing his throat. Was that his name? It felt right... and the words perfectly natural. “I don’t really know what’s going on, I just woke up here out of the blue.”

Good, the more he spoke the more the pain lessened. Was his body acclimating to it? Human interaction? That was weird, he remembered many boastful speeches and conversations with trainers in the past. Amnesia wasn’t the right word for this, was it? This was just a lapse in memory. Perhaps that strange memory from before tore that out.

“Well, uh, this is a public space, so it’s best if you came with me before someone else sees you,” Avery told him, and he complied. Public indecency was not something he wanted to get dinged for, even if he didn’t really feel uncomfortable like this.

Walking through the rolling fields, following the person in front of him. This felt childish, like a kid being led away after being scolded. He kind of was scolded, but he didn’t really care. He at least had Lucas’s ball and his wallet on hand, so he wasn’t completely back to square one.

They soon were in the main area, and he could see people herding various ranch Pokemon around. They all seemed a little too involved to see him, especially after he was thrown a blanket by Avery. At least he was covered up, but the situation obviously showed he wasn’t clothed. No matter, all he had to do was stay around and wait.

“Here, you can stay in my room for a bit,” Avery muttered, leading him towards a small building.

It was obvious that this was the lodging for the ranchers, breeders, and farmhands. There were only about six rooms, though most of them looked like there were bunk beds. The place was cozy feeling, logs making up the walls to create a rustic cabin. He saw a living area completely down the hall, where the workers most likely relaxed, cooked, and stayed clean. He was led to the far left room, right before the living area.

Entering this room, it was a small room with a singular queen bed, a nightstand with a lamp, a dresser with a TV on top, and a bookshelf. Seemed to be just the basic necessities, but more than enough to be comfortable after a long day of hard work. He just went and sat on the bed, seeing it was the only place to sit down. Lucas got up and sat next to him, the Raichu in awe at the room. The duo would just watch, observing their surroundings as Avery shuffled around.

“Um, could I actually ask you a favor?” the trainer mumbled, seeming flustered.

“Go ahead,” Ethan shrugged. It’s not like he had anything better do to.

Avery then walked over and leaned close to him. He could feel his breath, warm and grassy. It made sense that they would mostly eat vegetarian here, considering they all worked with livestock all day. He could feel Avery’s hand on his thigh, rough, course, but also firm. This was a sudden shift, but not exactly wrong. He then heard the blonde whisper into his ear, the words obvious of the intention.

“Sure,” Ethan stated, immediately returning Lucas. It was a favor he couldn’t refuse and felt pushed onto the bed. He wouldn’t mind staying around if this was part of the deal, and so the two of them continued.

-----------

For the next two years, the trainer would stay around the ranch. With his prowess in electric-types, he was in charge of training up the Mareep selected for breeding into Ampharos. He also would be asked to train them for trainers wanting a battle-ready Pokemon as well. While he was hard on the Mareep, Lucas was a definitely balancing act. His Raichu often reassured the sheep when they were down, which further motivated him.

As for the people on the ranch, he had made good friends with most of them. With the only space available being in Avery’s room, he was more than willing to stay there. After all, they were in a relationship at this point. He felt comforting... familiar. Every so often, he’d see someone else in him, a young boy that would like similar if aged up. Why he did, he did not know, but little pieces of those memories would trickle in.

This area was especially familiar to him. He remembered a school trip that he had never been on, where the class got to pet the Mareep. Someone had gotten shocked, but those details were hazy. Perhaps, one day, he’d remember. But not today. Today was different, he would be going out on the trek to Virbank with Avery. Get supplies for the farm, but also just spend some time together.

Putting on his boots, baggy, ripped denim jeans, and a gray sweatshirt, he waited outside for the blonde. After a few minutes, he heard the door open and saw the man a little more dressed up than usual. Instead of the usual attire, Avery was wearing an olive green turtle neck and a nice pair of sweats. It was a bit chilly today, and the attire would allow them to travel with relative ease.

“Ready?” Avery asked him, and Ethan nodded. Hand in hand, the duo made their way out of the ranch and towards Virbank.

The trek was uneventful, as most of the trainers that frequented the route knew they’d get creamed by Lucas. Getting to the city was a breeze, and it always felt familiar whenever he was there. Like he had lived there for a good portion of his life, even though his memories dictated he was from Nimbasa. Even his trainer card reflected that, so it was certainly a weird feeling.

Making their way to their favorite cafe, the duo chatted about random things. Work, shows they were watching, Pokemon. While the conversations always felt the same, it was more than interesting. Everything was the same as always, but this status quo was always the same. Yet, this would be the day things would change.

“Theo, is that you?” he heard, seeing a taller, scruffy man looming over him in waiter attire.

That name was familiar. The boy whose memories he’d experience was often called that. Yet, that wasn’t him, so why would he get mistaken for that.

“Sorry, my name is Ethan,” he responded to the waiter, who had a dejected look. He then saw the name tag, and saw the words “Keaton.” Was that the other kid from that Christmas party? Then it would make sense...

“Oh, you just looked a lot like an old friend of mine. I hadn’t seen him in a few years... Went off to a region called Fizzytopia,” the waiter mentioned. “Excuse me, sorry, could I have your orders?”

Ethan suddenly felt a splitting headache, worse than any he had before. He needed to go there, that’s where the answers would be unearthed. Even if it meant leaving things behind here, he needed to do this task given to him. His leg was searing in pain, his mark seeming to crawl over him. This was it. He then saw a flash, of a white candle sitting in a burnt lot. He needed to go there.

“Hey, Avery, I forgot the boss needed me to get something special here. Could you order my usual and take it home please?” he asked, almost pleading.

“Yeah, wish we could spend more time together but I understand. Boss’s orders are important,” the blonde shrugged and gave the waiter their order.

Getting up, Ethan ran out of the cafe to the residential district. Rows of suburban houses contrasted the industrial feel of the city. Though it made sense, the city was primarily there for the movie stars who worked at the studios. Most of them lived here, along with those who are more rich and famous. Yet, these continuous rows of houses felt like a labyrinth.

He then made his way to the burnt lot, nestled away from the rest of the houses. And low and behold, that white candle was waiting. A Litwick, seeming to be staring off into space. Well, until it noticed him. The Litwick’s eye perked up, and it immediately went to jump into his arms. The trainer hugged it tightly but knew not why. Yet, a name appeared in his memories.

“Are you... William’s spirit by chance?” he asked, and the Litwick nodded. He realized the Litwick knew it wasn’t exactly the boy that he loved but was still important to save him. But save him from what?

SYSTEM ERROR

HOMUNCULI MEMORY RESERVE CORRUPTED. COULD NOT SAVE PORTION OF MEMORY.

CONTINUING FROM NON-CORRUPTED DATA.

------

Ethan awoke in his room. How could he have forgotten all of that? Avery... His heart was torn. That love was real, but at the same time, Leo needed him. He wanted both, but would be forced to choose one. But, what had happened. Why did he forget that? No, he remembered being there for years... So why did he forget Avery specifically?

Grabbing his Rotom Phone, he knew what he needed to do. Find him. Even if that meant leaving this Fizzytopia behind for a while. Leo needed to handle himself on his own. Sure, it was shitty to leave a month before the holidays, but he needed to. But, his heart ached all the same. Their time at the resort was special, but he needed to remember. He did remember. Memories were soon flooding back. ANd most of the picture was suddenly coming together. He knew.

“William, Lucas, let’s go. We’ll need to the main team for this one,” he stated, rousing the Litwick and Raichu. “We’re going back to where this all began: Virbank.”
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:47 PM. Reason: grammar
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Old 11-09-2021, 12:06 PM   #8
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Litwick HOMUNCULAR MEMORY 1: SOTERIA

While he could not remember those false memories... He could remember his real memories. The memories that were his and his own. Of the past three years, that felt sealed and lock shut. Was this some kind of failsafe implemented into him? To make him focus on the task he was given. But, he didn’t know why his brain was tampered like this. It was... honestly a little unnerving. Fear was not something he knew, so the experience in whole was disturbing to him.

The smell of salt lingered in the air. The docks were usually a place reserved for sailors and workers, unless you had the coin. He needed to make haste, for his gut told him he needed to. The ocean was turbulent today, just like his mind. This torrent of new memories of his own life, was just as stormy as the sea. He had no time to travel to New Fizz. No, no time at all.

Finding a ship, he was able to secure passage to Unova. Sure, it would take a few days, but he was prepared. He sent a text to Leo, warning him he’d be traveling back through Unova for a while. He needed this. To figure himself out, and to see why he had forgotten what was so precious to him. To forget a person that was precious to him. His heart was tattered, torn in two. To lose someone, and never even know it. Fall for someone else, to only rekindle feelings left forgotten. Taking a step onto the ship, he was ready. Ready to recollect, and recall, everything he had missed.

----------

It had been a few days since he had first arrived at the ranch. He was off putting to most people here, due to his nonchalant, piercing gaze and cocky attitude. In a place where people helped each other, his entire presence was a wrench in the plan. Especially with how distant the man who took him in was suddenly. It didn’t exactly help that they were just taking shifts in sharing a bed, for he had nowhere else to sleep. Nowhere else in mind to go.

Yet, he felt stagnant here. He wished to leave, go forth and travel the region once more. Surely he had left some amount of trace he could follow. At the very least, he could wear something that fit him better. Overalls were very much not his style, and his head felt bare without wearing something. Not to mention that he looked so out of place even in the outfit.

Getting up and stretching, he prodded Lucas awake. Time to get up, and go somewhere. The bed was soft, sure, but it still felt awkward to use. After all, this was not his. Not his own place, just a room he was borrowing. For there was no sense of home here for him. Not yet, though at this time he wouldn’t know that.

Hearing the door open, he saw Avery enter the room. Heavy eyebags, which had grown over the past few days. Clothes dirtied and covered in frayed wool, and body aching. It looked like he had gotten shocked, and was on the verge of passing out due to sleep deprivation. And it was obvious, by how he stumbled over to the bed and just layed down on his back.

“Hey,” Ethan muttered, causing Avery to look over at him.

“Hey,” he got an exasperated response back.

“I’m going to go out,” Ethan stated, not mincing his words.

“Cool, could you get me something?” the breeder asked, seeming too tired to let the awkwardness show.

“Hmm?” Ethan looked over to him, and saw Avery just staring at him intently with soft breaths. Even past the distance, he could tell that there were feelings there. Creeping up, and transforming from the lust that was apparent a while back.

“Can you buy me a Casteliacone? They opened up a branch in town,” the teen pleaded, before curling up.

Ethan just nodded, and motioned for Lucas to come with him. The Raichu turned back to give Avery a worrisome glance, the breeder already passed out after the request. Ethan sighed, it was always asking for one thing or the other. Food, blankets, coffee. The list really went on, and he hated feeling like a pushover here. Sure, it wasn’t inconvenient for him, but he actually wished to be treated like a human being.

Heading out of the staff house, he was given looks by the rest of the workers there. All of them were wary of him, not exactly happy with the situation on hand. Sure, he did technically help out by battling trainers that came whenever they were busy, but that was it. His Raichu was more well received, who would often go around and check on the workers when Ethan was just lazing around. He was trying to work out that gap in his memory, but just couldn’t.

Strolling through the fields and paths out of the ranch, he noticed younger trainers from the surrounding towns rushing in. There was always a small crowd here, either working to catch wild Pokemon or trying to get training in. After all, he could utterly smash most of them with a single strike. But, for now, he would leave them be. He wished to go into town, and experience something new.

Leisurely making his way through, he wasn’t really stopped by anything. Just a trainer and his Raichu, experiencing a nice day on the way towards town. A few people walked past him here and there, but his aura was more than enough for them to avoid him. He didn’t really know why he executed this cold, haughty confidence, but it was true. He would become the best, and trample anyone who stood in his way. Even if it wasn’t really needed on his way into town.

He soon arrived, this rustic town slowly being pincered by modern society. The clock tower loomed over the entire town, signifying that time here was slowed compared to the rest of the world. Walking through town, he heard the clock tower boom, signifying the start of a new hour. Not that he really minded, it reminded him he was still in this present moment.

Arriving in town square, there were a few small shops. A general store, some stalls selling fresh produce as well as one of the ranch hands selling products. A local eatery as well, and then a newer Pokemon center for the needs of the trainers. He then noticed the small ice cream stall set up near the Pokemon Center, and a line of children patiently waiting to eat them.

Shaking his head, he knew to get his other shopping done first. Heading into the general store, he purveyed the surroundings. A small section for clothes was in the back, and headed towards there. While the section was sparse, it was more than enough for him. A few basic black undershirts, two gray sweatshirts and a dark blue hoodie, and then a black and dark blue striped beanie with a furred pompom on top. Besides that, two pairs of jeans and some undergarments to last him. At least he wouldn’t look like a farm boy now.

Besides the clothing, he grabbed a few small, packaged food items for himself. He hadn’t exactly earned the trust of the others yet, and Avery had to more often than not had to begrudgingly bring him food or coffee. He could only use the facilities, sans bathroom, if he was doing something for the younger man, It was annoying, needing approval for everything solely for being new.

Why he wished to leave, but knew not where he wanted to go. It felt frustrating, as if some unseen force was keeping him here. That no matter how many small sacrifices he had to make in the past few days, it wasn’t enough to change his situation. Even when he was working towards it, it wasn’t enough. Perhaps, if he could prove himself in some way... That would work.

Checking out, he carried the bag of his clothes and food towards the ice cream stall. Most of the kids had dispersed by now, presumably to either go train under the previous, aging champion or head back to Aspertia for class. And so, it was just him, and the worker manning the stall with a disinterested look. Looking at her, she looked familiar... Yet different. Dirty blonde hair, face shape, and those dark brown eyes... was a lot like his.

“Hello, how can I serve you today?” she asked, voice disinterested.

“Can I get a Casteliacone?” he asked, before feeling a tug on his overalls. He looked down, seeing Lucas with shiny eyes and a pouting face.

“Okay, fine, two please,” he added on, and the woman complied.

“Ah, my brother loves these things... You look like you’re from the ranch, yet I haven’t seen you before. What’s your name?” she commented for a bit before popping the question.

“Ethan,” he responded curtly, more looking around the town then at her.

“Well, if you ever see Avery tell him his sister says hi, and he should come home every once in a while...” she sighed out, then handed him the two cones. “Enjoy your ice cream.”

With a thankful wave, Ethan handed one cone down to Lucas while carrying the other himself. It was surprising these things didn’t melt, and seemed to also be good for Pokemon? Most likely something to research, could help out in some battle strategies. Lucas was enjoying it, after all, licking at it profusely with happy squeaks.

The duo made their way back, the Raichu almost finished with the treat by the time they got back. Work had started to pick up, and at this point he was mostly ignored. He just made his way into the cabin, and back to Avery’s room. The blonde was still curled up, gently snoring away. He looked peaceful here, curled up like a child and drooling onto the pillow. Yet, Ethan wouldn’t hold this food forever and shook him awake.

“Wake up,” he gently shook, voice still stoic.

“Huhhh?” Avery muttered, hazily looking around the room before seeing the experienced trainer looking down at him. His eyes then looked at the ice cream cone, and perked up.

“Thanks,” the breeder continued, more drowsy now. He managed to prop himself up, take the cone, and began to eat away at it.

“Right. I think I ran into your sister? She stated you should come visit,” Ethan stated, scratching his head as he delivered the message.

“Oh... It’s been a bit,” Avery muttered, voice a little depressed. “I guess I jsut don’t want them prodding. Asking me when I’ll get a girlfriend, how work’s going, and the like.”

“Finally going to open up to me then?” Ethan asked, sitting next to him on the bed while starting to undress. He grabbed the bag, and filtered through the clothes to start putting them on.

“I mean, I guess I should consider that. We’re technically sharing this room... And you fucked my brains out,” Avery snickered a little bit, blushing hard. “Only fair, right?”

“Well, I grew up here, in this little corner of Unova. ALways enjoyed coming here as a kid, and well I fell in love with the Mareep. I always felt like it was my calling to continue taking care of them, so I worked hard at school. Especially after Mister Cheren started teaching in Aspertia seven years ago...” Avery chuckled, voice a mixture of melancholy and nostalgia.

“Yet, I was different. I knew I was. No one would really understand the feelings I had... THe thoughts I struggled with. I don’t know how your life has been, Ethan, but as the only gay kid in a country town it was hard. I don’t really open up, just put on a fake smile and continue forwards,” he began to ramble on, talking about his life between licks of the Casteliacone. At this point, the treat was almost down to the cone.

“So, I am sorry I took advantage of you. Even though you said yes... It was consensual, I still feel guilty. I had needs, and well seeing you just put me into overdrive. I thought you’d just say no... I’ve tried so much, pined so hard, and always got hurt in the end. So, I’m sorry. This ranch is more of a family to me than my own. They look after me, and well they’re wary because they don’t want to see me hurt,” he continued, eyes down cast. At this point he was done eating, staring at the floor.

Lucas, sensing the sadness, got up onto the bed and sat next to the teen. Using his charm, the electric-type tried his best to cheer him up. Avery gave a small chuckle, and ruffled the Raichu’s head. The Static coursed through, but managed to not leave Pokemon Breeder paralyzed. The outgoing, friendly, and caring Raichu was always doing what Ethan couldn’t. They made a good combination.

“Glad you’re being honest with me,” Ethan responded. “You are right, my life wasn’t as difficult. Nimbasa was a city of flashing lights, entertainment, and progressive culture. Never really felt out of place because of how I thought. I was, and still am, confident and ambitious. Sure, I’m not great at emoting, and my drive chased people off, but I am who I am. I’ve been all over this region, training up Lucas so we can overcome every obstacle. And, well, I don’t know what I’m going to do now. Maybe go home?” Ethan responded, trying his best to be considerate.

“Please, take me with you for a bit. I could really use the vacation,” Avery sighed out, turning his head to stare Ethan in the eyes. Without even thinking, the taller man gripped the blonde’s hand firmly, as if a reassurance.

“We’ve both sacrificed enough to get this far. I don’t know why I feel like I want to help you... Take care of you. But, you remind me of someone... Someone I knew. Even if I can’t recall them, I was more than willing to do anything for them. Until I left Nimbasa to go onto my own journey,” Ethan explained.

“So, Avery, let’s start back to square one, and not rush things this time, okay?” he continued, asking Avery.

“W-wait. Are you asking me out?” the Pokemon breeder stammered, but not letting go of the grip. “Okay, yeah, I’d love to. I’ll go request the time off, and probably grab some coffee. Be seeing ya~”

And with that, Ethan watched him basically skip out of the room. He had never seen someone light up like that before... Well, no, he felt he has before. But, he couldn’t remember who. Couldn’t remember why. He recalled his life so well up to this point, but not that. Was that part of these small memories he’s experience of a life unknown to him? It was causing him to act out of his character and become protective. Yet, this would be nice. To finally have someone to care for that wasn’t Lucas.
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:47 PM.
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Old 11-20-2021, 12:05 PM   #9
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Togepi Drizzle

Why were things like this? How could he deal with all of this? He just... Didn’t understand. Why things finally felt like they were going to go right, for it all to shatter. Yet, he reveled in it. Relished in the pain. For well... He couldn’t escape this feeling. To sink back into his depraved masochism, and relinquish the emotions he had gained until now. For these past years, they were all a facade weren’t they? This love he felt, wasn’t it just his dependency and languor coming back to bite him? That he willingly bound himself to suppress his own brutality. This was his cruel sense of justice... After all, misery loves company.

He pensively stared out of the window of his cafe, seeing the light drizzle beginning to hit the plaza. Rosemary had told him to stay put, for there was something that required her attention. Sure, he could check on her domain and keep it from falling to ruin, but that was it. He felt bound, trapped within his own cafe with Pokemon that couldn’t understand him. Custard seemed to have picked things up, but did not press the issue.

“Wearing my old cap and bandana, huh...” Leo scoffed, looking at the Togetic. It was cute, but a reminder. Not like he’d forget, he’d never forget.

Gripping the Skull Ball in his hand, he continued to stare at the pouring rain. There was no point to this. Dwelling on a love that he didn’t even know was real. It felt like it, but at the same time... Was it all just a charade. Not to mention he just slinked out without telling him. Just that he had taken a boat back to Unova. Well, if it was that important he wouldn’t press the issue. How could he? He had no right to intrude into someone’s life, when he kept his past incredibly buried at this point. Blocked out his first eight, ignored the next ten. Five years of a person... Though his time stuck in the Forest diluted his sense of time.

“Part of me still feels like we’re there Custard, wandering the woods...” He muttered. Where was that Pokemon...? He could’ve sworn... No. When things are right. That was the promise, was it not?

His time in Dialga’s gate most certainly did not help, nor being stuck in that temporal abyss. He felt completely displaced at this point, only grounded by his own resolve. Was this why he was chosen by her? That he was an anomaly of a human? It would make sense, considering that he never was healthy. His emotions were never properly able to be expressed... This happy, cute personality being a facade. Yet, that mask became him, and he forgot who he was. Forgot how brutal he was.

He touched his cheek, and rubbed it. It wasn’t bruised or swollen... Yet, he missed that feeling. Deep down, he knew he was addicted to it still. The pain... The abuse... The toxicity. He craved it. He wanted to be abused. He wanted to be the abuser. If it wasn’t for Custard, he’d still be there, wouldn’t he? No. The Alolan fully recognized just how unhealthy it was, and no matter how much he craved it it would derail everything that he had worked for.

“If it wasn’t for Big Sis, I wouldn’t have had a path in life. She set me straight, all of us straight. Hey, Custard. You ever wonder what happened to them? Mira... Jacob... Even Taiga. The babies of the bunch,” Leo chuckled, eyes unmoving.

---------

It had been four years since Team Skull had taken over Po Town. The buildings were dilapidated, being used for whatever hedonistic, anarchist, and vain acts of the team. While most of them were all who failed the Island Challenge in one way or the other... Consumed by bitterness by being betrayed by the traditions of the islands. Spitting on the name of the Tapus, and devoted to causing chaos and revelry across the island. Yet, there were still core tenants. No violence... Especially to those outside of the group.

There were those who didn’t fall into the category. He was one of them, being the only native left. He was basically raised by the team, learning how to actually express himself. Most of the time, well, he wasn’t allowed to leave. Not until he was old enough to disguise himself as a trainer. Not a wayward child wandering Ula’Ula. Orders from the Kahuna himself, who was stationed at the abandoned police station. At least the meowths were nice.

And so, he had spent his days reading whatever salvage he was given. Whatever they could steal, to try and enlighten him. He was fine with it, getting to spend those days with his Togepi. THe joy the egg gave him, despite the mischievous tendencies, was more than enough for him. He had other friends as well, his house jokingly becoming the “kiddie corner”. Most of the older teens and adults stayed clear away, wishing not to drag the “children” into their own messes. Whatever, not like he cared.

Yet, this day was special. They’d all finally be able to go on their own group outing. Just a small mission, cause some havoc and mess with island challengers. Of course, that meant they needed to look the part. THis would be the last time his hair would be its natural brown for a decade or so. He didn’t know it at that time, but the dye would become addicting. To lose himself into a new “self”, and slowly fragment away from the emotionless boy he once was.

“Ow, it burns,” the kid winced, feeling the dye start to sink into his scalp. “How long does this take, Big Sis???”

“Just be patient, okay?” he heard a voice reassure him, seeing the grown woman staring back at him through the mirror. She continued to rub the bleach into his scalp, making sure everything would be properly bleached.

“This’ll make you cuter yet Leo. You’re the smartest of these numbskulls ya know,” she continued, complementing the young tween.

“But Mira knows so much more than me! I’ve just been here my whole life- Ow! Why are you pulling!?” he tried to retort before complaining about the pain.

“Just because I know more doesn’t mean I’m smarter,” he hears a lighter voice chip in.

Walking into view was a slightly older girl, with pink hair tied into pigtails. The tips, though, betrayed her being a natural blonde. She wore her bandana around her neck, cap sitting neatly on her head. Her eyes were a light hazel, with a certain cheekiness, but warmness to them.

“Besides, you learn things better... And don’t get in trouble. You’re Big Sis’s favorite,” she points out, causing the older woman dying his hair to laugh.

“I love all of you dumbasses, okay? There’s a certain cuteness to it that I can’t help but liking. Yet, Leo here tries his best to not be dumb, while most of you don’t care,” the woman responds, finally letting go of his hair.

“Mira, thirty minutes. Then dye his hair just like when I did yours. Go yell at Jacob to get dressed, okay?” she stated before heading towards the broken down bathroom.

Leo just winced in pain, sitting patiently on the stool. He watched as his hair’s color slowly faded away. He hated being last in everything because of his youth, including this. Besides, the other boy living there was just told to put on the uniform, nothing done to cover him up. Mira just had to get her hair dyed, and he had to get completely changed.

“And here, blue for now so he blends in more with the team. Nanu’s gonna kill us if he gets spotted,” Plumeria sighed, handing the other girl the dye before leaving the building.

So, he just stayed put. Trying his hardest to itch his scalp, nor let Custard meat with his hair. He just whined, and winced, as he was poked fun at by the two others that lived with him. Yet, it was all in good fun. It was nice, feeling like he had a family. Having an older brother who pushed him in the right ways, and an older sister who would reassure him when needed. Of course, he supported both of them as well. This felt... healthy compared to before. It wasn’t fake.

“Hey kid, you look awful,” he heard a deeper voice speak up, and through the mirror saw a tall, lanky teen fall onto the couch in the back of the room.

Tanned skin and dark, curly hair. Uncaring green eyes that always had a hint of whimsy. Native of the Unova region, whose parents moved to Alola for work. Yet, that was all left behind for one reason or another. And now he was here, only slightly older than Mira by a year, and Leo by two. A twelve-year-old, thirteen-year-old, and a fourteen-year-old under one roof. For most parents, it was a miracle that they never fought. Yet, those parents would never even know.

“Well shut up, why do you get off the hook?” Leo pouted out with a whiny retort.

“Cause I’m not really known? Just blend in with the rest of the rag-tag group of misfits. Pretty much the same as the alleyways of Castelia, just none of the sewage smell,” Jacob responded, twirling the hair that was sticking under his cap.

“Though, these clothes were a bit of a pain to get on. I mean, these shorts ride up so much,” he heard his adoptive brother complain.

“Well, I feel these shorts are comfy and easy to wear,” Mira pitched in with a giggle. The uniform fit her surprisingly well, but then again anyone with Kalosian blood seemed to conform to fashion.

“Oh god why,” Jacob just groaned out, causing the other two to laugh. “Whatever, guess we’ll get to see Leo in these things. Probably gonna be swimming in them.”

“Well, yeah, he’s short as they come. Though, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was taller than you in the end,” Mira replied tongue-in-cheek.

The banter between the two continued as Leo began to poke his leg. He was in a little too much pain to really think of words to respond with. After all, he needed to be a good, patient boy. He didn’t want to disappoint Big Sis. This was going to be his first foray into the outside world in years. He was excited, even if it was to cause chaos!

His time was soon up, and he was shunted towards the shower. Big Sis was long gone at this point, having set up the dye. A medium-light blue. This would be interesting for sure, but he didn’t feel apprehensive towards it. It would be freeing, to finally rid himself of the last shreds of his parents.

With that in mind, he washed out the bleach in his hair. Once that was done, he looked into the mirror. A light blonde, just like Mira’s hair was. He sort of liked it... But he felt it didn’t fit him. Made his freckles a little too obvious, and not in a cute way. So, he began to get the dye ready to be put in.

“You do have clothes on right Leo?” he had heard shouted through the door. Right. Clothes.

Putting the shorts he was wearing back on, he headed out with the dye in hand and sat back down on the stool. Mira continued the process this time, rubbing in the blue goop into his scalp. This felt more soothing than burny, but well that was part of the hair dye process. It soon finished up, and he got shunted back towards the bathroom. His uniform was thrown in after him, and he turned the shower on.

He watched as blue ran down his arms, the dye being washed out. It felt like blood was running down him, thick and viscous. In a sense it was, the kid bleeding out the traces of his old life. That life... That name... All of it was gone. He was “Leo” now, that was the name he chose at that moment. Everything else faded away a long time ago. No point dwelling on a damned past.
Once the tween was done, he put his oversized uniform on. He was basically swimming in it, but it still fit. Guess it really fit into the gangster aesthetic, huh? Curly blue bangs peeked out beneath the white cap, and baby face obscured by the large bandana. All people would see would be a mischievous kid getting way over his head... Not the one who stayed behind for this.

“Well, look at you,” he heard as soon as he entered the room.

“Told you he’d be swimmin’,' Jacob chuckled. Everyone else laughed at it, and then started to prepare for their first excursion out.

“Hmm, alright. I have my Salandit and Rattata. You have your Fomantis Mira... Right, Leo, you should probably not bring Custard with,” Jacob sighed, counting everything up that they had.

“B-but, we do everything together!” Leo pouted, looking towards his room. The egg had been sleeping most of this process, which was fine. He was planning on waking him up and taking him out.

“Jacob has a point... If someone saw we had a Togepi with us, it might cause some kind of issue,” Mira pointed out, a little downcast. “I think we should consult Big Sis on this.”

The other two nodded, and grabbed everything that they needed. Unlike his older “siblings”, he hadn’t received a Pokemon yet to begin training. He’d be there as support, most likely, but there was always the chance he’d need to battle.

The feeling of the pouring rain touched his skin. He shivered a bit, a jolt crawling down his back. He was used to the rain, and didn’t mind it in the slightest. Though, going from some semblance of warmth to the cold rain was another thing entirely. It couldn’t even be the warm, humid rain that Alola was known for. No, that was the town’s curse.

Looking around, the trio eventually spotted Big Sis towards the entrance, seeming to be conversing with someone. Peering from behind the group, it looked to be a taller kid, with sharper features, tanned skin and jet black skin. He looked similar to some of the people from Maile... But not exactly. Kanto? That felt right.

He then saw a flash of green as a crystal was tossed towards Big Sis. She consulted it, and then gave a nod. Turning around, she noticed the group there looking a little in awe. Most people didn’t have the gall to just waltz in like that, much less talk with her first.

“Ah the youngest of my cute numbskulls! Well, guess the kiddie corner is gonna be getting another resident,” she chuckled a little, sort of jarring considering her usually cold, standoffish demeanor.

“Considering he straight up came in here with a Bugium-Z, I’m sure the Big Boss would be fine with him joining,” Plumeria shrugged. “Right-”

“Taiga,” the guy spoke, voice deeper than the rest of them, but there was a certain softness to it.

Leo just walked up, ignoring most social pretense here. He looked up, kind of in awe of the person in front of him. He was so... short compared to him. It was weird, thinking that he was similar in age, yet they felt so different. Besides height, Leo noticed a few other key things. A bandage beneath his left eye, a black school jacket unbuttoned showing off a white undershirt, and slacks. What was most odd though was the bat he held above his shoulder.

“Huh, a Kantonian Delinquent, where’d you go?” Jacob spoke up, voice being protective.

“Saffron Lower Prefecture Academy. Surprised to see a Unovan here,” Taiga responded, seeming both impressed and intrigued.

“Well, then we’ll get along just fine then. A Viridian gang tried to vye for some overseas territory in my slums in Castelia, ya know?” Jacob responded, causing a good chuckle to come out from the both of them.

“Not gonna ask why you’re here in Alola. Most of us don’t talk about our pasts, well, besides this kid here,” Jacob continued, giving Leo a slap on the back. “Po’s Child, as they call him. For me, little bro. And this is our young sis Mira. Maile native, half Kalosian. We’re all misfits in some ways. Though, the question is, how old are ya? Big Sis usually doesn’t send people our way.”

“Fourteen. Shot up fast, and beefed up too. Kind of hard to enforce things if you’re scrawny,” Taiga responded.

“Same age then, nice. Mira’s thirteen, and Leo here is twelve,” Jacob responded.

The two of them continued to chat away, and Leo just looked at Mira. She shrugged, not really knowing how to interject here. AS the oldest, Jacob would always step in to talk for the group when it came to general information. He had the best experience socializing with people, after all, so the other two didn’t care.

After a bit, Big Sis had come back with a larger outfit and tossed it towards Taiga.

“Get changed. Your Scraggy is fine according to the boss. Your quarters is that house there,” she told Taiga, and the large teen gave a nod and walked off. “Right, before I forget, don’t beat anyone into a bloody pulp without that thing. Property destruction is fine, just no assault.”


Leo watched Taiga nod, before walking towards the house.

“Oh, wait!” Leo shouted, running off towards him.

“Leo get ba-” he heard behind him, but he didn’t care. He pulled his bandana down and gave a cheeky tongue before catching up with the newest member of his fucked up family.

“Well, give him this,” he faintly heard, but didn’t care.

Entering the house, he looked around. Three bedrooms, two baths. One of each was his, since well this was his house after all. Not like the other two really complained, it was better to have some privacy instead of the hellish communal living in the mansion. Shitty iron-frame beds basically stacked on top of each other. The amount of body heat and sweet would be unbearable.

“THis is... Nicer than I expected,” he heard Taiga mumble, exploring the quarters.

“Well, I’ve spent the last four years taking care of the place,” Leo nodded with a childlike enthusiasm.

“Four years? Didn’t realize they had a child doing stuff,” he heard a small, distant chuckle.

“Oh no, I wasn’t forced to. This is my house, I grew up here! So, well, I wanted to make sure it didn’t go into disrepair. Kitchen is the second best in the town, one of the two buildings with running water... Or power. The Big Boss is very keen on making sure the younger members are well taken care of until they grow up, and Big Sis agrees. She’s not as soft with the older grunts,” Leo trailed off after his explanation.

At this point, he heard a small little chirp. Walking out of his room was Custard, the little egg’s eyes lighting up on seeing his trainer. His friend. THe fairy-type trotted up, and demanded being picked up. Leo happily did so, and the Togepi gave another happy chirp.

“Did you steal that?” Taiga asked, a little shocked that a Pokemon like that was here.

“No... He was a birthday present. Hatched here, when they took over the town. So he’s mine, through and through. His name is Custard,” the younger teen chuckled.

“Well, I like you kid. No one really has had the guts to be casual around me in a while,” he heard the older teen respond. “Mind if I sleep with you then?”

“What...?” Leo looked shocked, a little taken a back.

“Well, policy to leave girls be, and well I rather not ruin the mutual respect of the other guy. Rather not force a power dynamic into this,” the Kantonian added in.

“I don’t really see a problem with that then,” Leo nodded. “Now, why don’t you get changed and we can go do whatever Big Sis wants!”

Though, while Leo was excited, he felt Custard shift. The Togepi was acting a little weird here, but then again Custard was always wary of new people. He was always looking out for his trainer, and made sure that he was protected. Though, little did Leo know, for once the Pokemon was right.

---------

“No, it’s best to leave it be,” Leo stated, continuing to stare outside of the cafe’s window from the counter.

He sighed out, and started to work on polishing some mugs. Opening would be in an hour, and he needed to make sure everything was prepared. His Pokemon were already hard at work in the kitchen, and Ethan’s Pokemon were helping out the best they could. They all also seemed a little out of it, not knowing where their trainer had gone. Custard had communicated it well enough, but the Togetic looked a little downtrodden all the same.

“Five years is long enough time to move on...” he whispered under his breath. He then shook his head.

“Milanor! Caramel Macchiato please,” Leo shouted, getting a bark back from the barista Riolu.

Little did he know, his trip down memory lane would just be beginning.
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:46 PM.
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Old 11-20-2021, 12:06 PM   #10
Lil'twick
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Togepi Cloudburst


Content Warning: Violence, Abuse, Nudity

Taking a sip of his coffee, Leo slumped into one of the booths. Morning prep was exhausting, especially when his depression was kicking in. The anxiety, about fucking up and being punished, was always there. Not even the masochism could mask the trauma he had endured. But, he was just as at fault there. Physically abused, Emotionally abusing. It was a strange dynamic, that almost no one could break. That cycle of give and take... He was slipping back.

Seeing a wave in front of him, he saw a Gardevoir sitting across from him. Rosemary’s brother, taking on the name of Thyme. Powerful in his own right, he basically just forced himself into this. He could sense by the immense rivalry there that they hadn’t spoken in years. Yet, the Pokemon was just as mischievous as Custard.

The Pokemon had a small cup of tea on his side of the table, and was messing with his Mega Stone on the other hand. He was certainly trouble, but that was the fun part. SOmetimes it was best to just cut loose, and battle in that depravity. The sadistic furor he’d get into like when Team Skull was still together. He’d most likely be down that dark path still, if not for that sight of Lunala one night in Poni.

“Boy trouble?” he heard pierce his brain. It was so odd having one of his Pokemon able to communicate with him. There were trainers that learned the language, but it wasn’t his. He was just content with things now.

“Guess so? I’m just... allowing myself to remember bygone days,” Leo sighed out, taking another sip of coffee.

“And wishing you were still in that abusive relationship,” the Gardevoir chuckled, giving Leo a stern look. “Your heart yearns for it, does it not? You know that as much as you love Ethan, he won’t hurt you in that way.”

“After all, he consoled you when things went awry at the resort. Sister was not pleased with the results either, but it was a trifling matter nonetheless. Now, tell me, why do you run from your past that you wish for?” Thyme continued on, a powerful smirk on his face.

“I... need to leave it behind. I want to leave it behind, and finally grow. Abuse and trauma still shackle me. If I feel I fucked up, I just shut down... okay? I know I’m not a good person. That my happy demeanor is just a facade. That I act cutesy, dress like it, to hide my hollow heart. But, I genuinely am in love with him... And I don’t want to fuck it up this time,” Leo responded, sighing out.

“But, consider this. What if it doesn’t work out?” Thyme propositioned.

“I’m prepared for that. I can hope, but as long as we’re friends, that’s enough for me,” Leo responded, finishing off his coffee. He then got up, slapped his cheeks, and put on a happy smile.

“Now, let’s get this done!” He shouted enthusiastically.

But, that wouldn’t happen, as he soon heard a knock on the door. Heading over, he saw a delivery person out there, seeming not happy about being in the rain. Usually deliveries didn’t come this early, unless it was bulk. But they knew to take all of that through the back, and Spencer and co would bring it in.

“Uh, hi, how can I help you?” Leo asked, opening the door.

“Delivery for Chrys,” the delivery person stated. Leo gulped.

“I’ll take it then,” Leo stated, grabbing the package and signing it.

Closing the door, he immediately rushed upstairs. He was too occupied to see Thyme giving Custard a curious glance, but he cared not. He had to trapeze through a horde of different Pokemon, all hanging out or just lounging around the apartment. It was a little annoying, but he didn’t care. He was soon alone in his room anyways,

Ripping the package open, he felt horrified... Before a wry smile crept across his lips. He held up a black choker, and knew. It seemed like a stroke of fate, but he knew very well what it meant. He needed not to run from his past anymore. Shed this facade and fall back into depravity... Just like he did all those years ago.

-----------

It had been four years since Taiga had joined the family. Leo was sixteen now, and his body had definitely changed over the course of the years. He shot up in height, though was still shorter than the other guys in the house. Voice deepened, but was still a lighter, higher pitch. He had to shave constantly, and he was getting more toned. All of the baby fat was gone at this point, and he looked like a young adult rather than a kid.

Tonight was going to be something special. A summer festival, for the residents to have fun, participate in games, and a fireworks show. It also meant for them to infiltrate the populace, and get new information. While there were now younger members than them, his group specialized in information gathering. With Taiga’s rugged, intimating look, Jacob’s schmoozing demeanor, Mira’s cute, smart matter of fact, and Leo’s bubbly personality. THey were able to hit every social angle, and get what they wanted.

Last year they managed to steal yukatas for the festival, which allowed them to slink in easier. This year, well, they still had them. It was a stroke of luck that all of them fit. His was a light blue, with ocean waves styled into it. It contrasted well with his currently orange hair. Every year he had it dyed something different, but that was fine. It allowed him to express himself easily.

“Hey, can someone help me tie my obi!” he heard Mira shout from the living room.

Heading over, he helped his sister tie her yukata together. Hers was just a simple pink with peony blossoms patterned in. She tended to avoid her birth name, or the moniker she took on. Mirabilis, a name for a wonderful year... And a girl who would light everything up. Compared to Chastity... Who was quite the opposite. Puberty had made her more sauve... more haughty... and a lot more reckless.

“There ya go,” Leo stated. “Right, how’s Salt and Stew’s training going?”

“Pretty well. Nothing against my Lurantis at this point, but the little guys are trying their best. Glad you’re letting them interact with you and Custard now,” she trailed off, talking about his grunt Pokemon.

He was first apprehensive four years ago, when Big Sis had assigned him a Rattata and a Salandit. Yet, they eventually grew onto him. They’d often run around the house with Custard when he was working in the mansion. Since he was taller, and stronger, Big Sis often had him work on things in the mansion when they didn't need him in the field... Which was often due to his chance of messing up.

He shivered, and held his arms tight. There were always repercussions when he fucked up. He got hit in the arm by Taiga, knowing perfectly that he deserved it. So, he didn’t want to fuck up. He didn’t want to be hit as a punishment... No. He didn’t like failing, and knowing what would happen if he did was awful.

Yet, he couldn’t help but still be enamoured. Tall, strong, handsome... Warm. Besides his anger issues, Taiga was honestly pretty nice to be around. Comfortable to sleep next to, and the sleepy cuddles were a good reassurance. And whenever he went too far, he apologized. Leo, of course, took advantage of this and twisted things to get what he wanted. But, that’s just how things were.

“You two ready?” he heard Jacob, who was standing in the doorwell wearing a patternless green yukata.

“Yeah!” Mira responded with a cheer. “Right, Leo, say goodbye to your Pokemon. We’ll probably be out late.”

“On it!” Leo responded, and ran to his room real quick. He gave Custard, Salt, and Stew all hugs before telling them all to behave. He looked at the Scrafty who was sitting on the bed, monitoring the smaller Pokemon. He received a chill not in response, and headed out.

The trip to Maile was pretty short. They had a secret ferrie that allowed them to skip the long route through Ula’Ula. Just a quick sea trip of half an hour, and they were already at the docks. The group all waved goodbye, and began to head towards the festival. Shining lights, and the murmuring of the crowd. People of all ages enjoying themselves, forgetting the stress of the summer to have fun.

“Leo, stay with Taiga so you don’t accidentally let something slip,” Jacob stated. “Mira and I will go blend into the crowd. Let’s meet up for food in about... two hours? Play some games, have fun, and just give each other signals when necessary.”

With their orders in place, they all started to disappear into the crowd. Leo looked up towards Taiga, who seemed to be acting more awkward than usual. Then again, the tiger print yukata definitely stood out in the crowd. But... It looked nice on him. Most things did. Wait, what?

“What do you want to do first?” Leo piqued up, still in awe of the shining lights.

“Well, I’d like a drink but...” Taiga trailed off

“No booze. You get worse when drunk,” Leo scolded.

“I’m an adult, you’re not. Only reason why I’m not,” THe Kantonian responded.

“You’re barely an adult,” Leo stuck his tongue out. “Let’s just play some games.”

The duo walked towards the galley, seeing a huge surge of the crowd. Leo kept his ears perked up, for any rumors or leads that they could follow up on. One thing immediately caught his attention, rumors of a large influx of Minior on Mt. Hokulani. While interesting, not something that they would be able to benefit from.

Seeing a shooting gallery, Leo pointed towards it. While he wasn’t a great shot, Taiga most certainly was. It also meant distracting people long enough to slink off and pickpocket. With a nod, the game began. At this point, the ginger slunk into the crowd, and randomly searched people. Nothing too interesting, until he managed to pick up a small notebook. That’s gonna be useful. Pocketing it, he returned towards the end of the game with a stick of cotton candy. Easy to swipe from a stall.

“How well did ya do?” Leo asked with a high pitched voice, rising onto his toes with enthusiasm. He rocked back in force, to act more innocent.

“Well, I can choose a prize of choice. Don’t really have interest in any of these though,” Taiga stated. Leo looked over, and saw that the prize pool was indeed disappointing.

Looking around, he saw a young child eying one of the prizes intently. A Litten plush, seeming to have been there for a while. A little raggedy, there was a certain charm there. Besides, doing one good deed would allow them to get in better graces in the crowd.

“How about giving that to the kid right there?” Leo whispered, pointing things out.

“That works,” the other grunt replied. Getting the prize, he watched Taiga hand it to the kid.

With thanks, the two of them then disappeared off into the crowd. Nothing else of interest was being talked about now, so they just enjoyed the festival. Leo felt... happy about it all. That he could just relax and enjoy his youth for once. No worries, just enjoying himself. The hours passed like a breeze, and he didn’t realize just how much he was enjoying it.

Reconvening with everyone for food, the group all ordered takoyaki. Heading off towards a secluded spot away from the crowd. Finding some shaded trees, the group leaned against a few trunks while eating their meals. A few tidbits of information was exchanged, but it seems everyone was coming up dry. Leo did mention the notebook, which caused intrigue by the group.

Opening it up, it looked to be shipping logs from the nearby trash plant. Things that came in, and stuff that would come out. There was one thing of interest here, and that was the movement of Pokemon like Grimer. That meant more prime stock for the newer grunts. Especially with better Pokemon like Alolan Grimer.

“Good job Leo!” Mira cheered on. “Big Sis is gonna be happy about this. Make sure you keep that safe, okay?”

Leo nodded, and finished his food. The four of them conversed, and acknowledged to go back into the festival. Time for more fun, and more recon. At this point, the night was getting darker, and more people were here. It was around the time for the fireworks show, so the festival would be most crowded.

Though, he knew that Taiga was a little uncomfortable around fireworks. While he didn’t pry, he could tell that there were some bad things he had experienced with loud noises in the past. When the rain turned into a thunderstorm, the taller guy tended to hole himself in their room. No matter how much comfort and reassurance there was, some things couldn’t be moved past... Even if at times, Leo did abuse this fact into getting the things he wanted. It was a give and take from both sides.

“You sure you'll be okay?” Leo asked after their current game.

“I’m fine,” he heard a stoic response.

With a shrug, the Alolan teen didn’t press the issue. No matter what happens, they had pretty much done what they needed to do for the night. All they had to do was relax, let the festival die down, and go back to the boat. Though, as if it was cruel, fate wouldn’t allow that.

Bumping into someone, Leo felt the notebook fall out of the yukata. Grabbing the pick up, he noticed the person who bumped into him also went down to assist. He looked at the person, and saw an older woman in her mid-forties. She was wearing a lavish headdress, and premium make-up with a high end kimono. Yet, beneath those features... She looked familiar.

“Chrys, is that you?” he heard her ask.

He felt a pit well up in his stomach. Fuck, this was bad. He knew who she was now, that tone was unmistakable. She was one of their neighbours, before Team Skull took over. A makeup business mogul, she was a top ranking person in a Kalosian beauty company. This was bad, if she recognized him their entire cover was blown.

“S-sorry, you must have the wrong person!” he exclaimed awkwardly, grabbing the notebook and bolting.

He pushed through the crowd, his brazen actions making him not care if he was noticed. He could hear Taiga call for him, but he didn’t care. He fucked up. It was an accident, but it was a fuck up all the less. He just... He just didn’t want that punishment. He didn’t want the guilt to consume him. ANd he didn’t want to become a monster again. Out. Out. OUT.

He stopped at a park clearing overlooking the festival, out of breath. He had the notebook still, and that’s all that mattered. It was fine, he’d be fine. Even if he’d get hurt, he... He succeeded. To him, that was all that mattered. Nothing else mattered. He wasn’t a fuck up. He could do more than just be domestic. That’s all he cared about her.

“LEO!” he heard Taiga shout behind him.

Turning around, he saw the man filled with rage. He gulped, knowing exactly what was about to happen. He’d get yelled at, in the best case scenario. But, from Taiga’s tone he knew that wasn’t going to be the case. He was in trouble here, but he was happy about it. It meant someone cared, even if it was just his mistakes.

“What the fuck!? Don’t just bolt like that. You almost blew our cover. God what the fuck were you thinking!?” Taiga started to go on, berating him for the massive fuck up.

“I-I just. No. Fuck you. I did my fucking job for once. Who cares if I got recognized, it’s not like there will be any repercussions!” he shouted back, a mixture of anger and sadness on his voice. At this point, small tears were beginning to fall down his cheeks.

It happened in a flash. He saw Taiga fully well up in rage, and then felt his hard fist crash into his face. Leo stumbled back, feeling the recoil of the hard punch. His vision was blurry, the entire right side of his face in searing pain. He never hit him in the face... Never. But, it awakened something in him. A need to control. A need to dominate.

Reeling back, Leo immediately punched Taiga in the gut. The taller guy lurched down, the pain just as bad. And then, filled with adrenaline, Leo slapped him across the face. He had speed, even if it often caused clumsy mistakes. Though, this was no mistake. Taiga’s face soon came back to look at him, confused that he was fighting back this time. But, Leo wasn’t done here. Grabbing Taiga’s face with his hands in the moment of confusion, he forced a kiss.

This hatred. This anger. This passion. It was too much. It all welled up inside of him, and just exploded. He heard the fireworks begin to go off, the sparkling lights and booming a backdrop to this fight. Yet, was it really a fight? No, it was more like domination. He could feel his body be crushed, as he was overtaken.

And then, once he was done, Taiga looked at him with a forlorn look. He looked lost, and this was the first time he looked confused. That he wasn’t in control. Losing control was always scary, a massive change that crashed the world around you. But, there was also a liberating feeling, allowing yourself to fall into another’s grasp.

Taiga went in again, but instead of a punch, he felt his hand get grabbed. It was soft, not the hard grip he was used to. A small smile was there, from a face filled with pain. Both of them were in immense pain, but well didn’t that make it better? Leo couldn’t help but chuckle.

“Took you long enough...” Leo trailed off, spitting now. “You’re mine.”

“Let’s head home.”

Sneaking off towards the ferrie, the duo headed back to Po TOwn without the others. It was most likely for the best, as they'd be able to figure out that they fought again. Yet, that was fine. The pain made him feel alive. That, even with his happy demeanor, there was apart of him that was purely apathetic.

Getting back, the house was entirely dark. ALl the Pokemon were out, most likely part of group training. Leo was immediately pushed against a wall, the pain jolting him awake. THere were no words needed here, only manipulation and pain. Was this love? Was this something darker? He couldn’t tell.

“Even if this isn’t your dream, keep dreaming it...” Leo thought, as things escalated.

He found himself staring in the mirror. It had been a few hours, the house still silent. Blackened eye, and swollen face. His neck filled with bite marks, shoulders and back scratched ot shit. Bruises all over the place, and wrists dealing with rope burn. The only thing juxtaposing the skin was a black choker. And a wry smile creeped up his face, feeling whole for once.

----------

Leo stared at himself in the mirror. This wasn’t the broken, dirtied mirror from Po. No, this was his present mirror in the Arcane Realm. He was fully clothed now, and held the choker in hand. Gulping, he slowly put it on, and saw himself. A reflection of his past stared back, bloodied, bruised, and happy. This was the day he’d get dragged back into hell, wasn’t it? He found a blissful smile creeping across his face. So be it.
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:46 PM.
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Old 11-20-2021, 12:07 PM   #11
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Togepi Deluge


Content Warning: Violence, Abuse

Leo had decided to delay opening the cafe for the day. Custard looked at him, a little horrified. After all, the Togetic knew immediately what was going on. The fairy flew over, and took off the cap and bandana. It was Leo’s, and well the Pokemon felt he needed it more. Painful memories could only be processed by confronting them head on.

Yet, Leo refused, and handed them back. He couldn’t wear these again... Not yet. He had somewhere to go first. Especially with the rain starting to pick up massively. This felt worse, and worse, and worse. Yet, this felt like home. The constant heavy downpour, it was more than enough. It only added to his strength.

He headed across the plaza to the salon, one of the few nice placed. Walking in, he immediately looked at the receptionist. Grabbing his payment, he put a bag of coins onto the counter. Pay first, ask later. In this city of coin, you needed to front first if you needed something special.

“Well well,” the receptionist said, holding up a small medallion with the Team Skull symbol on it. “Thought you guys disbanded five years ago.”

“We did. Just want a haircut. To go back,” he stated downcast.

“Alright, I’ll do it. It’s hard to keep that dye stocked you know. It’s gonna take a while, with that curly hair of yours,” they continued on, starting to enter something into the computer.

“Cut it. I want a fauxhawk. It’s... It’s who I am,” he stated with resolve. He’ll miss his long, curly hair. But, that was just the fake him. The traumatized boy who so desperately cling to a persona.

“Then come with me”

------------

The next two years were a whirlwind. It wasn’t long before the relationship became public, and people tried to be supportive. Tried. For those who knew this, it was obviously toxic. The dependency Leo had was unhealthy, constantly manipulating and gaslighting to get what he wanted. To get what he needed. And he became Taiga’s punching bag, taking all the abuse in stride. The punches, the beatings, it all wore down on him. Yet, the masochism kept him going... Made him crave it.

But, as the years went on, they devolved. Their issues became worse and worse, and by the time they made their deal with the Aether Paradise neither of them were stable. And the worst was yet to come... For Moon would give way to revealing this delusional relationship.

Poni Island, a mostly uncivilized place meant to test the strongest of trainers. This was also their last line of defense, to make sure that trainer and Lusamine’s daughter were stopped. Guzma had gone with the Aether President to try and save Alola. To stop the monster who would sear the light through the sky, bringing the region to darkness. Was this really the best thing to do?

Leo could only watch from the sidelines as his friends were crushed one by one. There was no point in trying to fight the kid. He was there as support, not to fight. No one ever let him fight... So he always fought back with his words. Manipulate people with food to do what he wants. He had most of the Team wrapped around his fingers, and he found joy in that. Yet, no one expected it. Those honeyed whispers, especially through his boyfriend, to allow him to control others.

And so, he watched Big Sis fight the trainer. Everyone else was defeated... Everyone but him. And this was his cue. If he slunk away now... Ran away now, he could try and prevent them from stopping the Boss. If he could just make it through the canyon before them. Even if he just had Salt, Stew, and Custard on him. Just a Rattata, Salandit, and a Togepi. What could possibly go wrong.

Sneaking his way into the canyon, he began to traverse what he could. He had to avoid the wild Pokemon that would overwhelm him. The powerful trainers use this as their own playground. And avoid the so-called saviors of Alola from crushing him. This was tantamount to a suicide mission... But he needed to do this. This would be the last way to prove himself.

Making his way through the canyon, he did his best to avoid what he could. There were a few battles he was wrapped into, especially since he was in his grunt attire. People were trying to stop him, even so he was only trying to help the person who housed him. Who allowed him to keep his home. What was wrong with that? To help the person whose one action caused him to flourish in the past decade.

Yet, he had hit a wall. Less a wall, but a woman. Covered in paint, she was gazing out over one of the bridges. He could tell she was nothing like the people he had to deal with before. Only Custard was still standing, and it was scary. He wasn’t going to make it. He’d be lost here, crushed by the woman before him.

Noticing him, she turned. She looked hazed, almost whimsical. Pink paint was on her face, looking like glasses. Hair a straw blond, a bit darker than Mira’s. Yet, there seemed to be something to this whimsy. As if on instinct, he called Custard out. The Togepi chirped, seeming happy to find someone filled with that fae spirit.

“Oh hello. You’re different... It’s rare for a Togepi to be that happy. It’s a nice muse, to see such a pure Pokemon with a grunt of a group of troublemakers. But, let me ask. Is your heart into it?” the woman asks him, her hazy eyes piercing through his soul.

“I’m.. I’m only doing this to repay what was given to me a decade ago,” he responded.

“Ah, I see then. Well, I need to prepare for my proper trial but...” she rumamged through her pockets and produced a pink crystal. “I can tell your life is going to change tonight. So here, a gift for you. If you promise to follow the ways of the Fairy-type.”

“I promise!” Leo shouted with resolve, pulling down his bandana. His lip was a bit swollen at this time, but it was something he was proud about.

“Here then,” she told him, walking up and placing the crystal into his hand. “See ya around some time.”

He blinked, a bit flabbergasted. Did he just receive a Z-Crystal, without a Z-Ring? That... Was truly his turning point. At the age of eighteen, he would finally go on his own journey. And to start it, he needed to say his goodbyes. To free himself from the abuse that he loved so much, including the abuse he inflicted. The fights, the beatings... Primal fight of flight was every day, but they supported each other. Even if it was in the worst ways possible.

Taking in a deep breath, he saw it was now night. The moon was full, and he ran forwards. The Alolan moon was different... When full, it was said Lunala would watch over you. The bat of the night, sheltering the islands from the wiles of the moon. To provide clarity on a full moon, and protection on a new moon. It was always watching.

Entering the final cavern, he saw a gigantic Kommo-o slumped over the floor. Was that a Totem Pokemon? He shook his head. This was his chance, and he exited the cavern. He was in awe, seeing a gigantic altar in front of him. Each step would be painful, but he needed to do this. He needed to move forwards.

As he climbed the steps, he heard a loud pitched cry echo through the canyon. Looking up, he saw a moon-shaped bat take flight. Lunala. This was his sign to break through the illusions he had fooled himself into. Taking in a deep breath, he ran up the steps. The fight overhead meant nothing to him, as long as he could repay his debt.

He continued to climb, it taking a lot longer than he thought. He then reached the top, and realized that the fight was over. A large portal stood in front of him, with Guzma and Lusamine slumped over on the floor. What the hell had happened here? He knew not, but he heard Guzma mutter something.

“Hey kid... Please tell Plumeria that the team is disbanded. I’ll make my way out.,” he was told.

He felt his entire world shatter. His entire life was crashing down, but at the same time... It was freeing. He couldn’t process everything, and the next few hours was a blur. He couldn’t remember what had happened, just that he was soon home on Ula’ula. That he had said his goodbyes to everyone, and elected to give Salt and Stew to Mira. He hugged her and Jacob one last time, and wished them luck... And that they’d see each other again.

And that just left him and Taiga in that broken house. These ruined halls, stained in mad struggle of dominance. They stared at each other, wayward eyes not knowing the best way to process the situation at hand. But, this was it. He felt it in his stomach, and he could see Taiga’s rage flare up.

“This is your fault,” he finally heard the other guy speak up. “You abandoned us. You went alone and fucked everything up again!”

And he was punched in the stomach, failing to find words. He was so used to this pain. So use to this punishment. He was numb to it at this point, just wanting it because it felt like someone cared. Someone was interested in him. Someone would just touch him.

Coughing up some blood, Leo smirked while looking at Taiga.

“I’m not the only fuck up. You act so high and mighty but that’s it. All talk. You use to hit harder. But now you’re pathetic,” Leo chuckled, not caring about the blood.

“How dare you,” Taiga spat. “After everything I’ve done for you?”

“Done? You mean beat the shit out of me? While I whispered honeyed words to make you my lackey? Gaslighting you when you did something I didn’t like?” the Alolan spat back. “You were always under my thumb... I just wanted the pain to feel alive. TO distract myself from my thoughts that were killing me.”

Taiga just stood there, frozen at this point. And then his body moved on his own, and punched Leo in the face again. The teen felt himself hit the floor, barely able to get up as Taiga left the room. Once he returned, bat was in hand. THis was going too far. Even for him.

“Don’t fuck with me. You little brat. Guess you haven’t learned your lesson yet!” Taiga shouted, swinging the bat towards Leo’s face.

But, he never felt the wood connect. Instead, the entire room became illuminated. Custard and jumped in, form changing. WIngs grew from his back, shell melding into his body. His neck grew, and in front of him was a pure white, angelic creature. With an angry chirp, Leo could see Taiga’s body enveloped in a purple glow. THe man was distorted, before being slammed into the opposing wall.

“Extrasensory. Thank you... Custard,” Leo coughed up. The Togetic then flew over, giving the boy a hug. “I love you too... But I have unfinished business.”

Leo slowly got up, and grabbed the bat. Limping over, he held the bad over Taiga, and then swung across. Blood splattered across the walls, and a few teeth flew out. The man in front of his looked pathetic, for once in his life. But looked up at him, with a happy smile.

“Guess this is goodbye then?” he started softly, getting up. His nose was bleeding at this point. , dripping down all over him.

“Forever. I... I still love you but-”

“We’ll kill each other.”

And that was all the words that needed to be said. The door soon burst open behind them, and Leo could see Plumeria rushing in. The clean up and aftermath of this was more than enough to bear. Leo could see Taiga be led out by Plumeria, presumably for self care. Considering how much that bat did, Leo was surprised he wasn’t dead. Guess it was because he didn’t swing at full power, and Taiga’s constitution was a lot better.

But, as soon as he was alone, an immense feeling of dread crept up over him. This was all his fault. He curled up into a ball on the floor, rocking back and forth. Tears welled up and over his face, him bawling his eyes out. He was truly alone again... In this damned house. In a place where he grew up without love. And... And that’s how he treated the person he did. Like complete garbage.

Yet, this was Lunala’s gift. To see that his actions were not acceptable in this either. THat his own depravity was what caused this all to happen. This could’ve been healthy. There were good times in the past two years, there were... But this? It felt fated to happen, if not only for the fact that he refused to acknowledge his actions.

“Leo...” a soft voice spoke to him, and he looked up. There was Plumeria, staring at him with pitiful eyes. The first time he ever saw her show true weakness.

“Get up,” she stated. He complied.

“Things are going to be hard. A lot of people here will be lost. So, please... I know you have a good heart. Would you please help me take care of them until they’re ready?” She asked him, and he complied.

He took a deep breath, and looked back at that house one last time. What was once a happy place, stained in paint and now blood. This was it, his entire life coming to a close. He could finally move forwards, and he would. He took that step out with her.

And he was glad he did. The next two years of his life, he grew. He learned how to work through his emotions, even if his newly diagnosed PTSD would trigger. Baking was always a part of his life, but it was his calling now. Besides that promise he made, that’s what he focused on. For he needed to prove that he could stand on his own.

Stand on his own he did. He managed to impress Nanu enough with his growth to earn a Z-Ring. Finally, he was able to use the Z-Crystal he had obtained that night. It was the accumulation of the bond he and Custard cultivated for over a decade. They were partners, thick and thin, and would never leave the other’s side. And never did they, as they were finally able to go on their own. They left Alola behind for a new region. A place free from his past, and instead marked for a bright future. But, Leo knew his demons would still haunt him.

---------

“How does that look?” the stylist asked him, spinning him around and showing the back with a mirror.

Light blue hair, cut short and formed into a fauxhawk. It was... perfect. Nostalgic. And a part of him that he had refused to show. Even if he was free to do what he wanted, leaving the past behind was only tormenting him. He had already discarded the name Chrys. That was from his neglected childhood.

“Perfect,” Leo replied with a firm nod. A snarky grin creeped across his face.

“Well, take care then,” he was told.

Heading out of the shop, he headed back towards Charity’s Embrace. He felt the rain soak through his scalp, his now bare ears freezing in the wind. This was him. The part of him that would always be part of Team Skull. That unhealthy, depraved individual who would partake in his wants. Indulgence was his sin, and he would indulge in what he wanted. He would follow his goals, and keep going if he failed until he succeeded. He was not a healthy person, he knew that. He was violent, snarky, and manipulative. No matter how happy and bubbly he was, he had his own darkness.

Acknowledging that, he flipped the sign to “open” and started to work the back counter. It was eerily empty today, even for a heavy storm like this. Usually people would take refuge from the rain here, and stay a while either reading a book or just sipping on coffee. It did take some time, but he finally got his first customer.

Yet, as soon as he saw them, the mug he was polishing dropped. The sound of broken ceramic echoed through the room. Was this... real? It had to be, there was no other way it could be. He took in a deep breath, ready.

“Leo. It’s been a while.”
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:46 PM.
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Old 01-04-2022, 07:31 PM   #12
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Litwick HOMUNCULAR MEMORY II: KARDIA

He had been on this boat for about a month now. THe sound of the sea, the smell of salt. It was starting to become monotonous. Yet, there was no rush. If he felt that he needed to be there immediately, he would’ve taken a plane out of New Fizz. This journey was all about reflection... TO fully remember everything by the time they landed in Virbank. Most days he just looked out over the sea, letting those memories play through his head. Of the past that he had lived... Yet, the more he looked, the more it felt like a lie.

“Lucas, do you remember my parent’s faces?” he asked the Raichu, who gave him an odd look.

“Though so...” he muttered. He bit down on a cigarette, and tossed it wayside.

The sailors had offered smokes to him before, and while he avoided them in the past... He bit the bullet. It was a way to relieve stress for sure, and the mental haze seemed to be cleared as he did so. There were other drugs too, but he mostly stuck with cigs and joints. His body only seemed to ever get the beneficial effects anyways, instead of the coughing fits the others got. Further proof to him that things... weren’t exactly right.

“William, do you think I’m human?” He then turned to the Litwick, who still hated the waves.

The candle shook his head, knowing the answer but not saying. More secrets surrounding his life, weren't there? Lest he be sure that he was just hallucinating. But, the more he reflected, the more he was sure he wasn’t really a person. He was too... perfect. Too healthy. The sign that he didn’t even feel pain in his lungs after smoking for three weeks straight was more than enough. He should’ve realized with his eyes.

“Hmm... I wonder how Leo is doing,” Ethan muttered, thinking about his friend. His roommate. His heart tugged, knowing that he did love the kid. But, remembering everything made him realize he was still in love with Avery.

“Guess once I see him I’ll have to make a choice, huh? I know you’ll be pissy Will,” the homuculus muttered dry, causing the Litwick to get pouty and punch his trainer.

“Well, once all of this is said and done, I'm sure you’ll get your wish.” Ethan then shook his. “Hey, Will, did you and Theo ever go to Nimbasa?”

The Litwick looked a little downcast, and then shook his head ‘no’

“Well then, guess I can tell you when I did. For while it was my first time, truly, I thought it was my home my entire life. But, I’m sure it’s a lie. That the only things that are the real me was once I awoke in Floccesy. So, let me tell you when I went there.”

-----------

It has been about a month since he had said he wanted to go home. The dazzling city lights, the hustle and bustle of youth participating in a fast life of entertainment. Castelia was the big city, the heart of Unova that kept it alive. Nimbasa, though, was the city that was fast and loose. The entertainment and youth culture center of the region, it was the home of celebrities, artists, athletes, and all and any inbetween. After all, the Gym Leader was the most famous fashion model in the world. She was a trendsetter, and had a rabid fanbase. And her gym was the heart of the Amusement Park, where everyone cut loose and had fun.

And that fast paced, shining light filled life filled him with ambition. All of his friends had big dreams, to become famous in multiple different fields. He was no different, wanting, and still wanting, to be one of the best trainers in the world. To crush it under his heel, and have people respect his power. Very few people were able to become the height of trainers. Champions, regaling their region and representing them on the world stage. It had been about a decade since he set foot out of here, a curious Pichu in tow. While he caught other Pokemon, and trained them up... In the end it always ended with him and Lucas.

Taking a deep breath, he let out a sigh. The smell of hopes and dreams. It was a weird kind of smell, mostly body odor, gasoline, and burnt lightbulbs. It was a very weird kind of distinction, but one nonetheless. Nothing like the clean air of the rural country town. Even if the smog was nowhere near as bad as Castellia, it was still a city at the end of the day.

He looked back at Avery, who seemed to be in awe at the entire situation. The plane ride from Virbank to Nimbasa was only an hour, but it was an entirely different world. Virbank was an industrial port city, this was a cultural hub. Entirely different. He also was a bit too drab, wearing a simple hoodie and t-shirt with jeans and boots. He looked the part of a farmer boy, and it was kind of obvious.

“Wooooowwww, this place is... Lively,” he heard Avery state in awe.

“This is just the airport,” Ethan pointed out. “Come on.”

He then walked out, backpack in tow. This was just going to be a small getaway anyways. No need to pack super heavy. Besides, they had a place to stay anyway. So it should be more than fine to just pack light and enjoy themselves. Avery was the one who wanted to tag along for a vacation anyways. Though, this was more like a two day date than a couple going away for a weekend. Things weren’t really there at this point.

Exiting the airport, Ethan looked skywards. It was about noon at this point, so there was a lot that they could do. Explore the shops, check out the Battle Subway, the sports domes, Musical Hall, or the amusement park. Maybe get a bite to eat first before all of that. He forgot just how many options were available here, but variety was the spice of life after all.

Getting through the terminal was a breeze, and they soon were in a car towards the heart of the city. He looked over to see Avery glued to the window, taking in all of the sights. This just was the same old Nimbasa to him, but for a rural kid this was the big city. New sights to see, and all sorts of sensations that weren’t in the country. Seems this childlike wonder wasn’t going to cease any time soon. This would turn out to be a lot more fun then, wouldn’t it?

Parked in front of a series of townhomes, the duo left the car and thanked the driver. Ethan walked towards one of them, and walked up the steps. He looked back at Avery with a ‘come on’, beckoning him the steps. Arriving at the door, he looked at the ficus pot sitting on the porch. Lifting it up, he grabbed a small key from underneath and turned the handle. Home. Clean as always, open as always. That was that.

“So, I’m guessing this is your parent’s house?” Avery questioned behind him.

“Yeah. Not like they’re here right now. They’ve been in Sinnoh for a few years now, but keep the bills paid so I have a place to return to when needed. Was hoping they would be though,” Ethan shrugged in response, heading in.

It was empty... Always so empty here. Minimalism was the creed, with a touch of modern deco. And so, it felt like that sterile, ‘classy’ apartment that a person would see in a modern TV show. Picturesquely perfect, and any less would be a grave sin. Why he barely crashed here. He had no reason to stay here when he could be exploring the sights or getting stronger. But, well, that was that.

Slipping his bag off in the hallway, he let Avery look around while sitting on the couch. This is what he needed to confirm, if this place really still felt like “home”. Such a strange concept... The idea of home. Wasn’t it better to find the place that you belonged, instead of the place where you grew up? Sure, it could be better... more convenient and comfortable. But, if your heart wasn’t there, then it wasn’t your home. It was just a house.

“Besides your family photos on the walls, there really isn’t much here is there?” Avery quietly asked.

“Nope. No point in stocking up on food considering people are gone months at a time at the least. Just buy what we need for the stay, use it or take it with us when we leave. It wasn’t always so empty, but well, that’s all in the past now,” Ethan waved his hand off, tone uncaring.

“Well then, what are we going to do?” Avery questioned, raising an eyebrow. “Vacation means more than just lazing around in a different place, you know?”

“Besides going out to eat, I don’t really care either way. There’s some good restaurants closer to the amusement park. We can always grab a bite to eat, and decide from there?” Ethan responded. He then got up, and headed back towards the door.

Avery just sighed, and nodded in response. It only takes a single step to change how things would go. And well, that had changed the course of things. What had happened if they had just stayed there in that empty house, who knows? Yet, perhaps it was best that they didn’t. This was all about having fun, and enjoying oneself. No point. No point at all.

So, after about half an hour of discussion on the way, the duo eventually decided on a sushi restaurant. After all, it was something that Avery ever had in his life. It was a rare treat for Ethan, well, considering how expensive it was. Yet, budget wasn’t an issue here. His parents did at least wire him some funds, even if they couldn’t make it in person. Further proof that love often had to be kept at arm’s length. To fall hard was to fall into depravity.

Getting seated at a window seat, the duo just stared at each other for a second. Examining each other, and looking for the tiniest of detailing. Avery was definitely tanner than his sister, but that could be attributed to the work he made as a breeder. He did have some pretty heavy tan lines, though it wasn’t really obvious with his current outfit. Though, most of the time he was fully covered up. Being a Pokemon Breeder had a ton of risks involved.

“Now that I think about it, I didn’t see any photos of your parents,” Avery stated, perplexed.

“They took all of the big family photos with them. Not that I really blame them... Though it does feel weird being in a house with just pictures of yourself,” Ethan muttered, a little unnerved.

“Ah, I was just curious if their eyes were as... yellow as yours,” Avery mumbled.

“Oh,” the ravenette responded with shock. “No. I was told it was a genetic mutation. What the doctor told them when they were born. They had blue eyes.”

“Dark brown hair and blue eyes... Huh, I could imagine you with that icy blue,” Avery chuckled, resting his head on a hand while gazing at him. “Would look just as good.”

“Well, if you’re done prodding on that, guess I am owed some stuff. Like baby photos,” Ethan stated tongue in cheek. He watched Avery look taken aback, before getting an embarrassed look on his face.

“See how pasty I was?”

“Was? You’re hella pasty underneath,”

At that point Avery pulled his hood over his head, trying to hide his embarrassment. The two awkwardly chuckled before looking at the menu. There was... a lot here. Fish, a lesser species of most Pokemon. Not at the same cognitive functioning, or having typings of moves. While a lot of Pokemon were livestock, meat was obtained from these lesser fauna.

“There are so many options... And names. Huh, well, I see some fried things so I’ll try that. Maybe one of the full raw ones,” the breeder said, putting down the menu.

Ethan, on the other hand, was scanning the menu down. He wanted a few things... a spicy roll, a fried shellfish roll, and a barbeque eel roll. There were a few more he wanted as well, and decided on getting them. Whatever they didn’t eat, he’d just feed Lucas once they were out of the restaurant. Strict no Pokemon policy. Didn’t stop patrons from ordering extra to feed to their Pokemon after the meal.

Their server soon came over, and the duo bombarded the poor girl with eight different things. Ethan watched as she frantically wrote everything down, triply checking with the both of them For better or for worse, they would at least be more than full for a while. Perfect for walking things off, and enjoying the rest of the day.

Once their server left, the duo continued to chat. Mostly about Avery’s work, Ethan’s traveling around the area. It was weird he hadn’t left yet, at this point, but Avery did ask to tag along. So, he at least had some reason to stay until now. Even if it did draw the ire of some of the people at the ranch.

“Right, what will you do after this?” Avery questioned, a hint of worry in his voice.

“Depends on how things go, ya know? This is basically a two day date is it not?” Ethan started with a hint of blush. “Really test if this can be more than a friends with benefits situation, or even just an extended fling.”

“I guess you’re right. But, let’s say this does work out. What then?” the blonde followed up.

“Well, I’ve traveled around all of Unova by now. And training up Lucas in Victory Road really wouldn’t accomplish much now would it? He’s already stronger than most of the Pokemon in the region,” Ethan chuckled, lauding his Raichu's power.

“Then why don’t you help train up the Pokemon of the ranch? You seem to have an affinity for electric types anyways,” the breeder proposed. It was an interesting prospect.

“Hmm, I guess that does give me credibility, officially working for a well known place. Though, you guys mostly work on livestock anyways. Why would you need a proper trainer?” Ethan questioned back, pondering the reasoning.

“Well, primarily to make it so that the wild Pokemon don't beat them up. Besides, people seem to have been wanting Mareep as pets lately, so better to make sure they’re well behaved. We’ve also loaned out our Ampharos in the past for battle facilities... But that has stopped since our last trainer required,” Avery explained, more and more words coming out of his mouth.

“Okay, stop. You just want me to have a reason to stay.”

“Yes...” The breeder looked downcast. “That obvious?”

“You wear your heart on your sleeve,” Ethan pointed out.

Their server soon arrived with their massive order, holding a gargantuan tray in her arms. She slowly began to put each plate on the table, careful to make sure nothing fell off. Once she was done, she gave them a slight bow, said she’d be back with refreshments, and hoped that they’d enjoy the meal.

With a seeming mutual, silent agreement to move on, the two began to talk about differing contents while eating their food. Minute words interrupted between bites of sweet, spicy fish. The salty flavor of the sea perfectly mellowed out the sweetness while bringing out the more complex flavors of the spicier sauce. The mix of avocados and rice also helped the roll, making it a light but filling meal that was perfect to converse with.

Their conversation soon died down as both of them became engorged with their food. The light roll Ethan had eaten first was now replaced with a super crunchy, deep fried roll covered in spicy mayo and sweet onion sauce. It was truly the most blasphemous version of the Kantonian dish, a true testament to Unova’s ability to warp anything into a delicious greasy mess. Yet, it was fuel. Fuel that kicked him up and stirred him from his stupor.

His next few hours were a blur from that point, lost in meandering about the city and eating to whatever their fancy was. At some point or another, they entered the amusement park. Avery practically begged to go on all of the rides, a sense of childish glee coming from him. That was fine though, it always was a good thing to let loose and have fun every once in a while.

“Hey Ethan, let’s ride the ferris wheel!” Avery exclaimed, causing this hazy furor to come to a close.

Ehtan blinked a bit with renewed clarity, looking up to see the bleeding sky. Soon it would hit nightfall, and the first few stars started to twinkle high up. The place was crowded, and neon lights soon began to turn on from one ride to the next. THis truly was weekend prime time, as people from all walks of life crowded through the stalls.

Feeling a sudden tight grasp on his hand, the homuculus barely had time to react. He was soon being dragged by the Unovan country mouse, off towards the giant wheel on the horizon. His eyes met Avery’s, who gave him a closed, happy face in response. In his other hand was a cone of blue cotton candy, and well it was the only thing keeping him really balanced.

With the sudden rush, the duo snaked their way through the crowd. Avoiding the lines for the more popular attractions, and the lull of the food court (once again). He felt like he was a circus clown trying to trapeze his way from one side of the big top to the next. Yet, there was a certain fun to this risk. THis fleeting feeling that this was the only shot they had.

And really, it was. There was one last ferris wheel car open when they had arrived, the last of the line being shuttled in. Both of them were met with an annoyed gaze from the ride attendant. It was a massive inconvenience, really, to have people show up last minute. Realizing it would be a waste of time to try and argue, they were let onto the ride.

With the slow ascent, they had the perfect view of the horizon. They ovular carriages were designed for a complete 360 degree view for the riders, and well it was serving its intended purpose. Ethan sat and sighed, seeing Avery try to take in every sight from his seat. The Desert Resort, the Entralink Forest, and other well known Unovan landmarks popped up in their ascent. But, nothing was as lucky as when the ferris wheel started to stop to let people out.

“Look behind you,” Ethan pointed out, causing the other guy to look.

“The sunset is really pretty from this high up... Wow,” Avery responded in awe, before clearing his throat.

“You, uh, mind if I sit next to you? To watch it... ya know?” the blond mumbled out, obviously flustered at the situation.

“Sure, I thought this was why you wanted to ride it to be honest,” Ethan sort of shrugged, and soon felt warmth on his side.

For a split second, there was a sense of serenity. The dying light, leaving behind a beautiful, dripping array of colors. Purples, pinks, and oranges slowly melting beneath the horizon, mixing together at the edge as a signal of night. More and more stars were starting to twinkle, not yet obscured by the neon lights. The calming transition from day and night.

He then felt pressure on his shoulder, only to see Avery slumped onto it. He felt fingers slowly crawl up his hand, before becoming entangled. This... This was nice. Just a time to stop, and think in this shared silence. Silence that didn;t need to be broken, for that truly was the best feeling in the world. Peaceful quiet, watching the stars with someone special.

“I enjoyed today,” Avery piped up, breaking the tranquility.

“Glad you enjoyed it, I guess?” Ethan awkwardly chuckled.

“It’s nice to just be... like this...” The pokemon breeder slowly drifted off, all of his spent energy hitting him like a truck.

Ethan just nodded, knowing his response wouldn’t be seen. A soft squeeze, and some ruffling of hair. But that was all. For nothing more needed to be done as they began their descent. Soon, he would wake to a world much more overwhelming than he was truly used to, so best to let him rest for now. Besides, there was this sort of calming feeling to watching someone sleep.

“You’re getting there, slowly but surely, opening my heart for you. Even if one day, I reflect and see this as a midsummer night’s dream... It was a dream worth dreaming.”

----
Sunset was approaching on the high seas, and the shape of land was approaching on the horizon. Soon.... Soon he’d be off this boat. Even if they weren’t going to Virbank, and had to dock in Castelia instead, that was fine. He... He wasn’t entirely ready yet. More recognition and reflection needed to happen. But, he could feel the winds of change coming...

“Alright Lucas, let’s go.”
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:45 PM.
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Old 01-07-2022, 12:15 PM   #13
Lil'twick
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Litwick HOMUNCULAR MEMORY III : PNEUMA

The bustling streets of Castelia never changed. Office workers rushing to get to their jobs, artists carrying their supplies around, and people touting the latest fashions. While a standard port city for most trainers, for the day-to-day people this was their home. Dedicated to both keeping Unova running, as well as influencing the rest of the world. All wrapped together by one delicious ice cream cone.

Ethan looked portside, seeing the ferry to Virbank leaving already. Guess they had arrived just a little too late. Well, that was fine. There were more things to process. More time... More time. Even if it was just procrastinating through the day... He just needed a little more time. To sort things through. He felt a nudge from Lucas, the Raichu looking up to him.

He then realized there was someone still here, and turned around to see his Litwick floating, gaze... hollow. Right, this was technically where he was from too. Guess that was a good place to go first. Though, that would require the ferry to be here. Best to just wait for it to come back. Castelia proper would only breed unnecessary distractions. So, with a deep breath, Ethan continued his recollection.

-----

Breathing out, Ethan looked up at the summer sky. An endless sea of blue, wrapping around the world to sustain life. A sphere of air, meant to trap in what all living things needed to breathe, while also protecting them from the harsh dangers of the sky beyond. If that “eggshell” broke, the yolk of the world would spill out and everything would collapse.

Feeling a sneeze well up, the homunculus covered up his face. He didn’t want to frighten the Mareep around him, all of them grazing around in their little pen. They needed to be watched, so they didn’t just end up wandering off to who knows where. Especially with their electrically charged wool, chasing them down was a hassle, and shock, waiting to happen. No matter, playing babysitter was part of his job now.

It had been about eight months since his trip back to Nimbasa at this point. Two-thousand nineteen... Weird to think that this much had time for the world. Where the common era had now begun, leaving what little of the ancients left behind. But, that was unimportant. Time, in and of itself, was a relative concept.

But, well, his life had been getting good. Things were more committed and steady, at the very least. Starting over helped a lot, but well he was happy. Besides, sticking around here wasn’t the worst thing or anything. He had something to do, and Lucas seemed to enjoy both the new company and the new friends to play around with.

Training the Mareep was an experience though since he was more used to just dealing with a singular Pokemon than multiple at a time. It was fine though, as all he needed to do was apply his training methods in bulk instead of to a single individual. It was fine, however, as it let him test out his skills more and more.

“How’s it going!?” he heard a familiar voice call out, seeing Avery starting to run over.

Ethan waited for a little bit before Avery came over to come and collect his breath. With a hair ruffle, the homunculus looked at his partner with a smile. The Pokemon breeder had certainly loosened up over the past few months and was more outgoing instead of reserved. It was helpful too, as he was better with speaking his words instead of tripping over them or getting flustered.

“Good. Most of them were starting to get hungry, so I’m just standing watch here,” Ethan responded, scanning the sea of sheep real quick.

“And none of them have gone missing?” Avery asked, seeming a little on edge all of the sudden.

“No? Have some of the Mareeps gone missing?” the ravenette questioned. “Well, besides the ones that trainers can catch.”

“Yeah. Just up and disappeared from the breeding stock. I was checking the ledgers today and two have gone missing,” the blond answered, a look of worry on his face.

While he was usually pretty casual and outgoing, his boyfriend put stock and pride into his work. It was a pretty competitive field, so you needed a good repertoire to be able to stand out. Especially if you were working at a well-known place such as Floccesy Ranch. The town was basically known for its Mareep wool exports.

“Lucas.”

The Raichu popped out of the horde of Mareep, looking a bit confused. From the serious tone of his trainer’s voice, the electric rat could tell something serious was up. There was, after all, only two times Ethan’s voice became this cold and blunt. In battle, or when something serious was happening.

“Some of the Mareep are missing. See if you can work with the Herdiers to track them down!” Ethan commanded.

The orange rat jumped out of the pen with a burst of Agility, starting to run through the fields at a breakneck pace. Hopefully, something turns up here soon. It was a strange occurrence to have them disappear. But, well, it might’ve been a mistake at the time.

“Well... All we can do is wait,” the trainer sighed out, lightly grabbing Avery’s hand and squeezing it.

Avery gave a simple nod, before heading into the grazing pen. Taking out a wool brush and a stethoscope, the blond began work checking up on all of the Mareep to check their health. Every so often he would take out a little notebook and scribble down notes. All of them looked the same, so the trainer was impressed that Avery was able to discern which Mareep was which.

“How’s the training going?” He heard Avery speak up after getting to one of the Mareeps.

“Pretty well. Some of them aren’t adept at fighting in the slightest, while others are naturals on the battlefield,” Ethan commented.

“I can see that... Well, I think we should pull some of them from the group. Wool texture is softer for some of these, so they should be made into proper livestock. Others have weaker heartbeats and sound exacerbated... Probably best to try and rehome them as family pets... But, besides those, you still have a good amount to train.” Avery gets up, stating his analysis of the Mareep currently in the pen.

“Right, I wanted to ask you something. You technically are a trainer, but I’ve never seen you use your Pokemon,” Ethan pointed out, breaking the topic entirely.

“Well, about that...” the Pokemon Breeder trailed off, seeming to avoid the subject.

“You don’t have one,” the trainer bluntly stated. Avery nodded in disappointment.

“Well, fine. Since I am in charge of the ones you aren’t sequestering right now. You’re catching your first Pokemon.”

Before his boyfriend could become a flustered mess, Ethan took out a spare Pokeball. Walking through the Mareep, he took Avery’s hand and gently put the Pokeball into it. The duo looked over the Mareep grazing in the pen, Ethan looking at some prime targets while Avery had no clue what to do. There was, after all, some paralysis of choice going on.

“Okay, why don’t we remove the ones that you deemed weren’t fit first?” Ethan suggested after a few minutes.

With a simple nod, Avery pocketed the ball and began work on corralling the sheep. The unorganized pen was soon divided into three groups, and Avery would lead one group off at a time. Watching from the distance, Ethan kept watching in case Lucas came back with any information. Though, the Raichu was nowhere in sight for now. The place was vast, so it made sense that there wouldn’t be immediate results. Yet, there was something in his blood that boiled when thinking about it. Some... aberrant feeling he couldn’t pinpoint.

Soon, Avery returned with another worker to lead away the second group. This was one of the ranch hands proper, presumably here to figure out where to put in this new horde of livestock. Weakest to strongest. Save the weak so the strong can protect them. Not everything was strength and power, every part of society needed support to keep it from collapsing. So, this was just that.

With the ranch hand leading away the group of livestock, Avery turned to Ethan. Anxiety was riddled on his face, and his breathing was starting to get more rapid. There were just a few Mareep here now, seeming confused on where most of their friends had just gone. Change was scary, after all.

Stepping over, Ethan hugged Avery from behind and gently started to hold his arm.

“Breathe in, and breathe out. Four seconds in. Seven hold. Eight out. Repeat until you feel steady,” Ethan softly told Avery. He could feel the breeder’s body loosen up, the tension slowly melting away. His breathing soon felt stable, and Ethan took a step back.

Then moving next to Avery, Ethan looked over posture. Throwing a Pokeball did at least require some proper posture. While their targets were friendly, and befuddled, most Pokemon in the wild were not. Accuracy was important, and that required proper posture and stance. It took a good eye and quick reflexes to catch Pokemon on the move, or completely unnoticed.

“Alrighty, mimic my movements the best you can,” the homunculus gently stated, and his partner nodded.

Ethan soon took his catching stance and threw a pretend “Poke Ball” at the Mareep. Nothing was truly in his hands beside the air, but he mimicked it all the same. Giving a side glance, he could see Avery trying his best to capture the movements. The duo went through the motions a few times before he could see the breeder look ready.

“Decided on one yet?” Ethan asked, seeing Avery retrieve the Pokeball from his pocket.

“Yeah,” the blond responded with a determined nod.

And Avery then took the stance, foot sliding across the grace with strength. Knees bent, body turned, and arm swung perfectly. The red orb flew through the air, before colliding with one of the leftover sheep. Infrared light came out of the orb, swallowing up the Mareep before the ball closed. One shake... two shakes... three. The ball soon clicked, recognizing that the Pokemon had been caught.

Walking up, Avery picked up the Pokeball. His face filled with awe and wonder, the realization that he could do this. It sunk in before he gave a quick nod and turned to Ethan with a grateful smile. His face soon changed, seeing something past Ethan. Following Avery’s gaze, the homunculus spotted Lucas running back to them.

The Raichu looked determined, vaulting back into the pin. Based on his face, the search was successful but hinted something was off. But, the two of them couldn’t exactly discern what it was. It was as if the Raichu had seen something. Something indescribable.

“Well, at least they’re safe,” Avery stated, letting out a sigh of relief.

“Yeah. Good news is, now you have a Pokemon that is truly your own,” Ethan stated. “Guess you’re gonna be joining me for training tomorrow?”

“I’ll have to move some things in my schedule around, but yes. I’m sure everyone will be happy hearing I finally got my own Pokemon,” Avery chuckled. “Anyways, I need to go check on things back at the barn. I’ll be seeing you later!”

And with that, he watched the person he loved run off. That breath of fresh air that lifted up his sour moods. A reminder that sometimes all you needed to do was stop and take things in, to recenter and renew your focus. That even when things get tough, there’s always something to keep going on for. Even if those breaths are what build up changing winds.

----

Four. Seven. Eight. Four. Seven. Eight. Four. Seven. Eight. He had to repeat the process a few times as the ferry soon returned to its dock. He forgot that he felt he could actually breathe there. That he wasn’t tied up in all of the bullshit he had to deal with in Fizzytopia. But, things were also too... relaxed.

As the ferry’s latch was laid down, there was someone he recognized. A woman with dirty blonde hair, and an all too familiar shape. On seeing him, the woman’s sunglasses came down a bit, before going back up. It was by chance that mutual connection came back.

“Melissa.”

“Ethan.”

“How is he?”

“A wreck, to say the least. At least you’re back. He’s been worried sick.”

“I don’t know for how long though.”

“Well... just don’t break his heart further. He needs you.”

Needs. He felt his heart hurt a bit. Before he could formulate a response, she was gone. Definitely had matured from when he had first met her at that ice cream stand. Right... She did get a job as a photographer in Castelia. Surprising that she made the boat ride though. No matter, he needed to catch the ferry himself.

For on those so close, but distant shores, he felt that answers he needed would be there. He had some time... and things he needed to investigate first. He could feel William’s determination as well, the Litwick more than prepared for what lay ahead. For this path was writ with blood.
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


Last edited by Lil'twick; 07-28-2022 at 05:45 PM.
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Old 01-11-2022, 10:55 AM   #14
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Litwick HOMUNCULAR? MEMORY IV: HAIMA

The hour-long ferry ride from Castelia to Virbank was uneventful. Which was both a reassurance and a worry to Ethan. Especially since his phone was silent. He’d expect to have been bombarded with messages, but that didn’t even happen. Maybe he got... two total from Leo. On asking where he was, and then another just saying have a good trip. Besides that and the standard raid call requests... Nothing else much. He trusted his team’s autonomy enough for them to make their own decisions, anyways.

Once he was back on shore, he pushed back everyone and headed towards the residential district. There was something he needed to confront here too. He knew this was where William once lived... when he was alive. Well, no, he is still alive. Just, in a different state. But, memories were gnawing at him. Eating him up, all about that house. Yet, no matter how many times he tried to recall that kid’s memories now... He got nothing. And so, he went into the neighborhood.

No matter how many years had passed, these charred ruins remained. The other houses surrounding the rubble were emptied now, the last of the residents too unnerved to stay. Many were charred away on that day, all those years ago. Written in blood, charred to ash. Nothing remained but small bricks, and a singular boy in the middle of the fire. He knew that much, from the small recollections of newspaper articles he had read... And the hazy memories of the experience at hand.

He watched as William floated over to the rubble, and just sat down. It was his home in life, burnt away... Him along with it. Yet, there was something else there. Ethan realized that now.

“Ready?”

He heard a voice whisper through the wind. What... What was that?

Shaking his head, he walked over to where his Litwick was sitting. Soot and ash remained after a decade. That even after all this time, something remained. Moving his hand over the pile, something caught his attention. A darkened, brown stain. Feeling the texture... dried blood. He had realized that this wasn’t an accident. His head was starting to ring, and felt himself soon hit the ground.

---

Today was a special day. A day he had been looking forward to all year... and he felt nervous. They were getting older now, so this would be different. They were no longer children, after all. Everything was changing... But maybe for the better? They were becoming their own people, but their bond was never breakable.

“AUSTIN!? ARE YOU READY?” the tween heard his mother yell up the stairs.

“COMING!” he shouted, finishing putting his socks on before rushing down the stairs.

Bolting down the stairs, he squirmed his way around his family until he was the first to the car. He already had his present picked out and in hand. Geez, everyone else were just giant slowpokes. No, he could’ve sworn he saw faster Slowpokes than his family. Everything always had to be perfect. Perfect... Perfect.

But, that was it. Nothing really eventful besides a family’s mad rush to get to a party. The car was rowdy, the boys constantly arguing, and the parents' futile attempts at quelling them. So, once the car was parked at the house, the entire car burst forth as the trio of boys bum-rushed into the house.

Austin, or Theo to most people, set the present on the table and went to go look for the birthday boy. Considering decorations were still being hung up... probably in his room. Snaking his way up the stairs, he looked down to notice something odd. His mother and Marie were talking... Which was odd. He’d never seen them talk that intently before. Usually, it was his mother and their mother. No matter, there must be a surprise going on.

Opening William's door, the tween saw his best friend playing video games half-dressed. Just a sort of lazy “I don’t want to put pants on yet” look, more focused on the cart racing game on the screen instead of being prepared for his special day. No matter, not like he wasn’t used to this from the multitude of sleepovers and trips from over the years.

“Happy Birthday!” Theo shouted, jumping on top of his friend. An audible “gack” echoed through the room as the video game was quickly paused.

“Hey- Thank you... Please... off....” William responded, wheezing a little bit towards the end. An easy enough request to comply.

He just crawled onto the bed, sitting crisscrossed while he watched the blond let out an audible groan. Theo watched as William stood up, and grabbed the nice set of slacks laid out on the bed. Putting them on, he then sat next to his best friend of sevenish years at this point.

“Twelve. Weird to think that’s how old I am. Isn’t it?” William asked, seeming a little put off by the idea.

“I mean, I’m turning that in six months. Age happens,” Theo shrugged, trying to laugh it off. A far cry of the introvert that would soon blossom. “I’m sure when we’re older, we’ll look back and say ‘gosh I wish I was turning twelve again’”

“Considering how my sister always complains about all of the stuff you have to do when you become an adult, I guess you’re not wrong,” William chuckled a little. “Still. Let’s just enjoy ourselves today! You’re staying over tonight, aren't you?”

“Well, duh,” Theo said tongue in cheek, before launching himself off the bed. He looked at Will from the door frame, before running down the stairs.

The next few hours were a blast. Party games, chatting with friends, snacks as far as the eye could see. It was a party through and through, from the sheet cake to the various gifts that were being opened. Truly, this was what a party should be. No more parents parading a bunch of children around, trying to placate them from screaming their heads off. This was still the age where large get-togethers were still all fine and dandy, but there was still that childlike whimsy of putting on the paper cone and blowing out candles.

Yet, Theo couldn’t help but feel something strange was going on in the background. William’s sister, who often would be joining the two in whatever they were doing, was distant and barely seen. Their parents were speaking in hushed whispers. If he was any younger, he’d just ignore it. But, something was churning in his gut.

“Ia... Ia...”

Something escaped his lips, muttered inaudibly beneath his breath. He could’ve sworn he saw his mother look at him with a smile when that happened. What the hell was that. Shaking his head, he told his friends he’d be right back. Walking up, he walked over straight to his mom, a little confused.

“Mom?” he asked, a little confused.

“Yes, dear?” responded in kind.

“Did you... what happened?” Theo was puzzled.

“I’m not sure what you’re talking about. I was just checking on you kids and was happy you were having fun. What, are you not feeling well?” She asked out of concern, the same doting mother as always.

“A little. I think I’m going to go lie down,” he stated. “I’ll be up in Will’s room. If people start leaving, tell them I say bye for me please!”

“Of course sweetie! I’ll let everyone know you just ate a little too much and are lying down,” she reassured him. With a small wave, he headed up the stairs. Flopping onto his friend's bead, he soon drifted off.

He felt his body violently convulse, and saw a splatter of blood on the wall. Coughing, he covered his mouth to see more blood coming up. W-was he going to die? He quickly got up, his body fully readjusting to what was going on. Smoke, there was smoke everywhere.

Rushing out of William’s room, he saw the entire downstairs engulfed in flames. Screams, terrible screams. A figure trying to, and hopelessly, leave through the door before seeing it was locked. Horrified, he made his way down the hall. He felt a tug as if something was guiding him.

A red string, tugging and pulling at him. Tied to his pinky, motioning him towards the other end. Blood sputtering, his lungs filled with pain. His entire body was boiling, freezing... churning. As if something was about to burst forth from within, and consume him.

He soon made his way to the room where the string stopped. Marie’s Room. There, he saw the girl bleeding out over a red pentagram. William was standing over her, looking horrified. What. The. Fuck. Was happening. He couldn’t speak, his mouth was filled with his own blood.

Yet, the two of them looked over at him as he stumbled into the room. The red string... it connected him to William. Yet, it seemed the other boy couldn’t tell it was there. That was weird. But, it didn't matter if they all were going to die anyway.

“I-I’m sorry... But, I had to. I had no choice,” Marie started to say between sobs. “I’ll be there to protect both of you... in my next life. But, please. William. She can’t have him... Not now. Not ever. I... I’ll be forced to... help her... One day... But... Complete... This... Brother...”

And the two of them realized she had died. Theo coughed up more blood, while William let out a hollowing scream. Theo saw that the fires were about to consume him, and tried his best to stay there.

“No!” Will shouted. He ran toward the book Marie’s corpse was clutching.

The words coming out of his lips were indecipherable. Everything was becoming red, and the candles turned from red to purple. The entire tone of the room shifted, and it seemed to pull the smoke out. A ward covered the room, a magical bubble of protection. The ritual was in place, it won’t be stopped.

Though, he could barely stay conscious at this point as a figure soon emerged from within the circle. He fell to the floor, blood spilling from his mouth as his consciousness faded away. To melt away into a sea of his own blood.

---

Ethan snapped back, horrified. That was through a child’s perspective. Through a mind that couldn’t fully comprehend what was happening. But he could. He knew. That this entire situation was more than fucked. He looked at William, the Litwick crying at this point. For an actual child to have to bear this burden. For over a decade. As a ghost, almost truly dead and gone.

“So you summoned a devil?” Ethan blinked, as the Litwick nodded yes.

“You were alive then, and a Litwick now... Is this borrowed flesh?” Ethan asked, and the Litwick nodded once more.

“Well then... One last thing. Will this contract of yours interfere?” the homunculus questioned, the Litwick instead nodding no now.

Wiping the blood off of his face, Ethan picked up the piece of bloodied wood. The amount of blood loss the kid experienced would’ve killed him before he even made it into the room. The fact he was the only survivor... Trickery was afoot.

He then felt a chill crawl up his spine. Something was there, watching them. But what, he didn’t know. All he knew was that they were being watched. That more blood would soon be spilled. A chalice, filled to the brim and drunk from as if it was the sweetest blood. He had a feeling that once he saw Avery once more, everything would be revealed. And that Sanguine chalice, perhaps, would be the healthiest thing for him in the end.
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


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Old 01-12-2022, 12:11 PM   #15
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Litwick HOMUNCULAR MEMORY V: PHLEGMA

This was it. All that separated him from Floccessy Ranch was the giant staircase. Built to help scale the cliffside safely, it was for ease of access from the port to the towns farther in. The air around here was different. The people here are different. Things come and go, that was natural. Yet, even some faces would remain. So... So... Everything is different. It was to be expected, wasn’t it? This was his journey’s end. Just one last thing to relive before the present’s tale could be told.

---

“Ethan?” the words rang clear in his head.

“Ethan?”

He blinked, seeing Avery looking at him perplexed. These... memories. What were they? Whose were they? This place he had never heard of... Yet so many of these memories were taking place there. He could feel a cough stirring, the air feeling more stagnant and chill than normal. Or was that just his body saying he needed to go.

“Huh?” he managed to respond.

“You’ve been strange since you suddenly ran off yesterday. Once you came back, you had caught that Litwick there,” Avery pointed to the candle.
Right. William. The ghost of one of the boys who died in that fire. But, once he had memories about. From someone else’s perspective, even if that person never was able to connect the dots. Strange, wasn’t it? That he had to decipher an amnesiac’s mind. Piece together every fragment forgotten. But, where could he start? Wandering around Virbank most of the night proved fruitless.

“I’ve been... having strange thoughts ever since that waiter asked if I was someone else. Visions, of places I’ve never been and actions I’ve never taken,” Ethan sighed, flopping onto their bed.

“That’s... strange...” Avery paused, taken aback.

“I... I need to investigate this Avery. I need to go to this ‘region’ called Fizzytopia. Who the hell named it that anyways. But, well, I need to go,” the homunculus sighed out.

“But, what about me? Our life here? Are you just going to throw everything away!?” the breed suddenly shouted back, his tone extremely possessive. This was... shocking. Not once did he display this type of behavior.

This caused the ravenette to rise, and look Avery straight in the eyes. He clasped his hands around his shoulders and sighed. He couldn’t understand why his partner had suddenly gotten so worked up. Shouldn’t they support each other’s decisions, even if they had to spend time apart? They were Pokemon Trainers, at the end of the day they often wander around for periods on end.

“Look. I’m not leaving you. Is it wrong for a trainer to go on a journey?” Ethan asked, tone as calm as possible.

Avery shook his head dejectedly. The breeder knew his partner was right but still wanted to try and stop it. That’s when Ethan realized... Just how controlling Avery was. In everything. That as long as he complied and followed his whims, everything was fine here. Was he just, enabling him the entire time?

No, he still loved him. Perhaps some time apart would be healthy for both of them. It had to be, or things only would’ve gotten worse and worse. Degrade to the point of utter dependency. He was touchy, he was needy, and he was aggressive when he wanted something. While usually a happy demeanor, he had this underlining irritability to him. Especially when stressed.

Even if this was a midsummer night’s dream... this dream was worth dreaming


Those words he had said in Nimbasa all that time ago suddenly rung through his head. He needed to leave before this turned into a nightmare. Even if it was to fulfill this quest, he needed to be away for some time. He’d be back. He didn’t want to abandon him... But perhaps some distance would be the healthiest.

“I promise I’ll keep in touch and come back here every so often, okay?” he told Avery, who was on the brim of breaking down at this point.

“Okay... I-I guess that’s fine. I’ll stay here. Train my Mareep. Go, figure this out so... so nothing can take you from me again,” he sighed out. “I... I think I do need some time to myself as well. So, let’s hope when I see you again we’ve both grown.”

“Then it’s an agreement then,” the trainer chuckled, before giving his partner a hug and kiss on the forehead.

“It’s okay if you need to cry it out first, though.”

And the two of them stood there for what felt like hours. Avery clutched onto Ethan’s chest, crying his heart out. Sure, most of this stemmed from abandonment issues, there was genuine pain there. It would be a lie to say if this wasn’t painful for him either. To have to leave behind the one thing grounding him. Instead of just wandering around aimlessly for the rest of his life.

---

“But... It was healthier for me if I forgot you,” Ethan muttered beneath his breath as he climbed up those stairs. Each step was heavier and heavier. “Even if... I just found someone as messed up as you.”

---

It was early in the morning, with dawn barely even beginning to surface. He was standing on the docks, waiting for the ferry to Castelia. He had elected to go by boat, so he could spend a day or two to figure out where he’d start. Besides, he wanted to spend one last day with Avery. A solemn, melancholic day where not even choleric could liven up.

“Excuse me sir?” he heard a soft, almost motherly voice ask.

He turned around, a long-haired woman in a scientist’s coat standing behind him. Hair as black as night, eyes ocean blue. Sleek, elegant black-rimmed glasses sat on her face, complemented by an orchid lip gloss. She carried herself in an air of confidence and mystery... Yet there was a familiarity to her.

“Yes?” he responded, a little wary a stranger would approach him.

“You have some wool on your face,” she pointed out, plucking it from his forehead.

Yet, when she touched him, he felt his mind tune out. Static. All he could hear was static. All he could feel was static. His vision was dark and scratchy... And he saw visions of green goo. Was-was he incubating in something? W-what was going on.

“My dear homunculus... It seems you finally found the crumb trail I left for you,” she whispered into his ear, breathy... but unnerving.

“Don’t worry. I just need to make you forget about that boy for now. Set a time lock for... a year and a half. That’s when I’ll need to come back here,” she whispered, tapping on his neck.

It felt like she was mixing his brain into putty. A child playing with slime, overturning it until it was a new texture and hue. That nothing that was there would be the same, and reverting it to its original state would be basically impossible. To the point where it’d be better to throw it all out and start anew.

“That’s the seal in place~ Now do your best to remember those for me, okay? I need that information dearly sweetie~” she coos, his voice dripping saccharine.

His worldview suddenly reverted back to normal, and he saw the woman standing before him. She looked concerned, holding a piece of wool. What was going on here? He didn’t know, but he... that’s right. He needed to go to this ‘Fizzytopia’ place. He had arrived here a week ago and stumbled onto a rumor of a burnt-down house, and suddenly felt the need to go.

The present him knew all of those were more artificial memories created to keep him going. To go along with the goal and purpose he was made for. Yet, this current him, unknowing of his nature, though it was all too real. It was just him, Lucas, and William going off to investigate these memories tied to William. That was all.

“Sir, are you okay? I just plucked this wool you had stuck on your face and you suddenly blanked,” the woman stated with worry.

“I-I’m fine. I think once I can sit on the boat, I’ll be good,” he responded, head feeling a little dizzy.

“Hmm, okay. Well, I’ll leave you be then. Just be careful to not have any foreign objects stick to you,” she warned, before heading back into the city.

“What an odd woman...” Ethan muttered, hearing the ferry grate hit shore. It was time to leave Unova behind, and explore a region unknown to him.

---

“Homunculus...” he stated beneath his breath. That’s what he was. A false human. Nothing more.Nothing less. An artificial soul created from borrowed flesh.

“No wonder... No. I’m still me. Even if I was created from his image. No. Created from him. I’m my person damn it!” he shouted, causing a flock of Pidove to fly from the nearby trees.

Grabbing a Pokeball, he threw it up into the air. William emerged, the Litwick being stored away after what happened back in Virbank. He had every right to be here now. They started this together, they would end this together. He knew who that woman was.

“Let’s go,” Ethan stated through gritted teeth, entering Floccesy Ranch. “It’s time to end this sorry charade.”
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


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Old 01-20-2022, 06:17 PM   #16
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Litwick Holos

Entering the ranch, he felt like he was walking back in time. Nothing here had changed at all. Just, an idyllic landscape filled with grazing Mareep. Yet, deep in his gut, he knew something was wrong. The very air tasted stagnant here... Something miring deep within. He was cursed to sense these magical disturbances, awakened from his contract with Nyarlathotep.

“I wonder...” he took a deep breath.

“Nyar shthan, Nyar gashana!” he shouted. His voice echoed through the skies, but nobody came.

Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

“Even if I brought any of them with us... They wouldn’t have been able to come. Whatever is here... is strong. Stronger than any of my contracts...” he stated, his mind suddenly searing aflame.

Memories of Austin’s time at Le Marécage Noir flooded through Ethan’s mind. He shook his read, realizing exactly what was going on. Even if his body was the perfect conduit for any of them... Even if they were all vying for his power, all they could do was send a retainer to be commanded by him. For his very soul was tainted, claimed.

And then... one last memory. No... a message.

---

"This is your fate, boy. You've been punished to live. I will be merciful. I shall steal your memories away. I shall meet you here again. Within a different body. I shall meet you here again, as the homunculus for your... I shall guide you, he shall guide you. If you want him back. You will find your broken memories. You will relearn the truth of this horror. The events that unfolded here were out of my control. Even a demon has their limits... And their standards. Now go! Live! I shall burn it all away. When it all turns to ash, I shall sleep. Only when my new body attains full power, from you regaining your memories, shall I stir. Then, maybe, we can rewrite your fate. Rewrite their fates. This was never meant to happen here. When the time has come, you will fight her again. The Queen of Darkness-"

Austin awoke in the charred ruins of William’s home. Blood splattering everywhere, but he was alive. Everyone else was gone. His friends... His family... Burned down to ash. Yet, he could still see that red string tied to his pinky... Disappearing off into the horizon.

He could see the flashing lights of ambulances and fire trucks rushing to the scene... but it was too late. That blaze... That blaze... Wasn’t natural... And there... he drifted back to unconsciousness... feeling every part of him be burned away.
---

His head ringing, Ethan continued forward. He could see a figure running towards him, as if out of desperation. Eyes heavy, almost dead, face scruffed and barely hanging on. Calloused limbs, and the smell of singed hair. Yet, he couldn’t mistake who it was. Those green eyes... he knew.

“Avery!” he shouted

“Ethan!” he heard shouted back at him.

And then he could feel his entire body twirl around as he desperately tried to catch Avery. The two then let go, and Avery looked up at him with desperate eyes. But, this wasn’t out of a need for physical touch. No, this was a cry for help. He was right. Something terribly wrong was going on here.

“I-I’ve missed you... I’ve heard nothing for over a year and a half... I thought you were ghosting me... or died. But, no, I’m just happy to see you. We can deal with the formalities later, you came, oddly, at the right time,” Avery vomited out, regaining his composure halfway through his words.

“I had a feeling,” Ethan responded, looking past his... it’s complicated... towards deeper into the ranch.

“The Mareep are disappearing again. En masse. The Herdier haven’t been able to find them either, and some of the Herdier have come back severely wounded... or not at all. We’re... needing to break out Stoutland. And it falls to me, as Head Breeder,” Avery explains, voice grim.

“Congrats on the promotion? Well, celebrations can come later. We need to get to the bottom of this,” the trainer stated with fierce determination. Moving his jacket, five Pokeballs sat affixed to his belt. He knew that he’d need more than William and Lucas for this.

“Spencer!” he shouted, tossing the Pokeball into the air. A large, orange form soon came out and touched the ground.

He then felt squeezed, being hugged by his Dragonite. Avery was soon hugged, which was a standard of the friendly Dragonite. Though the dragon’s face suddenly shifted to worry on seeing the serious tone on his trainer’s face. Something was happening here... Something bad. He knew now where they were, but that only he needed to help.

“Grab the Stoutland, I’ll fly above on my Dragonite,” Ethan told Avery and got a nod in response.

Climbing up onto the orange dragon, Ethan waited as Avery came out of the barn atop of the Stoutland. Excellent tracker Pokemon, able to sniff out even the most hidden of items. If the Herdier weren’t having luck, then having the giant dog be ridden was the only way they’d be able to do it.

The duo immediately headed into the forests. The Herdier would’ve found something in the fields. Careful to make sure he didn’t lose sight of Avery, Ethan scanned the forest from the air. Almost nothing. That was... odd. Too odd. Where could they have been taken to? Then, he felt something odd.

Turning westward, he noticed a large waterfall. Resolute Falls, where it’s said the Mythical Pokemon Keldeo would show itself to those proven worthy. There was a malicious aura coming from there... It was faint, but he could see some sort of bounded field there. He shouted down at Avery below and began to descend.

“We should try the waterfall,” Ethan tells the breeder once he lands.

“Stoutland... smells something there. But, from the look on her face. It’s... not pleasant,” Avery responds with a gulp.

With a silent nod, the duo rushed towards it on foot. If there was a boundary surrounding it, then flying into it would be more than a death sentence. As they ran through, he wondered how many Herdier had figured out this lead. Went down this path... and never returned. How many people may have wandered back here, only to disappear and no one would ever know.

He shook his head and then stopped. There were shadows in the trees, and cloaked figures soon rushed them. Pokemon were sent out, but he couldn’t care. He tossed out the rest of his Pokeballs and barked orders.

“Lucas, Spencer, Kita, Kyle, Sandy... Keep us covered! Fight as a unit!” he shouted at the five Pokemon. William needed to stay by his side. “Avery, go on ahead. I’ll trail behind in case there are more of them trying to ambush us.

With a nod as a response, he watched as the Stoutland charged ahead with its rider. It was just him and the Litwick, both of them on guard as they ran through the forest. A few robbed figures popped up here and there, but they were burned on the spot. He didn’t have the time or patience to fight through hordes of grunts. He finally had sight of the clearing before the falls, he just had to get there.

Arriving at the scene, he reflexively moved out of the way as an Ampharous flew past him. It was only a split second, but he then saw Avery fall to his knees. Running forward, he saw Avery pass out, surrounded by crackling shadows. Looking forward with bitter rage, he saw that woman once more, a remorseful Gengar at her side. Instead of the sweet face from before, it was pure sadism and power. Behind her was a shadowy portal, and he could hear... eating sounds coming from it.

“I see. You’ve finally arrived. Perfect!” she shouts, voice ecstatic.

“Why are you doing this!?” he shouted, cradling Avery in his arms at this point.

“Our Father has to eat. Is that wrong? Or... do you mean why I created you?” she asks with a sneer, obviously looking down at him.

“Well, I guess I can explain. My son, who you were created from, was meant to be Our Father’s vessel. It almost succeeded... if that little brat there didn’t interfere,” she says with disgust while looking at the Litwick. “ And, also, this sweetheart right here,” she pointed to the Gengar.

“Then again, I did lead her astray. Oopsie. But having to play the charade of a housewife wasn’t easy. My oldest son, and youngest, were both potential candidates. I'll be honest, I only had the third because I thought my second son wouldn’t qualify. Though, I was wrong on that front,” she continued, seeming distant from the idea of familial bonds.

“Oh, but that’s trivialities. They’re all dead anyway. A glorious offering to Our Father. Thank you, Marie, for setting that up,” she coos towards the Gengar, whose head hangs low. “But, when I learned you had secretly sacrificed yourself to summon something to protect your brother... Well well. That wasn’t part of the contract,” the woman then turns her disdain towards the ghost and poison-type Pokemon.

“At least you came to your senses once my son’s time ran out, and rejoined me,” she laughed.

“Well, it’s not like I had a choice,” Gengar responded.

“Anyways. Homunculus Designation E-10. Or, well I should be formal here since you were the only one who survived. Ethan. I am the mother of the boy whose memories you’ve been so foolishly chasing. Even so, I tampered with that so you only could remember what he already did, and nothing more~” she started to properly introduce herself at this point. “I am High Priestess Valeria, Queen of Darkness, spawn of Yog-Shoggoth.”

“I don’t care!” Ethan shouted. “This is all your fault. You toyed with all of these people's lives. Created them and then killed them without any care for who they were! I might be an artificial being... But I’m still my own person.”

“I don’t think you understand who you properly are. You are... my Yggdrasil. The perfect homunculus, an eternal battery that will never run out. If I didn’t need my son’s exact genetic information... so you could become Our Father’s vessel. I would’ve made you a beautiful, blond-haired girl. I always wished I could’ve had a daughter... A daughter who didn’t abandon me,” Valeria responded to him, chuckling at the prospect.

“Enough, I don’t care about this bullshit! William, Shadow Ball!” the homunculus ordered.

The Litwick complied, also disgusted at what he had learned. Even if it was his sister, the Pokemon would strike down any who stood in his way. And with that, he drew in the shadows to fire off the orb. It squarely hit the Gengar, who then began to retaliate. And this back and forth would continue, neither of them getting the upper hand. Neither of them was willing to back down, no matter how much it hurt them.

While this was happening, Valeria walked past the fight between the siblings. She walked up to her creation, and once again touched him on his forehead. To check the data he was meant to parse through, see if he could do what she was looking for. Though, there was nothing there. Nothing at all.

“Seems you have failed... Even if I did put in a failsafe. I thought what you had was more than enough, though, I do think I have an inkling, my dear E-10,” she tells him, before heading back to the portal.

While that happened, the fight continued to happen. Yet, Marie soon gained the upper hand. The Gengar landed a Shadow Punch square in her brother’s gut. Ethan could only watch as the Litwick went flying, before slamming into the floor. Yet, he could see the boy rise. Fierce will and determination flowed through him. His flame burned brighter than ever possible, purple turned blood red. Ethan could taste blood on his lips and saw a hulking figure shadow the Litwick.

And then the entire area turned white, and the Litwick’s form began to change shape. Larger, with his flame retracting to within his body. Arms widening, hardening, and a circular cap forming around his head. This was evolution, him going from a Litwick to a Lampent.

William slowly rose, and with one last Shadow Ball flung it towards his sister. The Gengar took the hit and slid across the ground. She looked done, petered out. And he could see the woman before him realize that. This battle was over the little brother the winner. Panting, the Pokemon looked towards his trainer, obviously strained.

Yet, both of them were taken off guard as Marie soon began to change shape. Her figure soon turned more humanoid, her shorty stubby ghost limbs turning into human ones. She looked as she was in life, wearing a shadowy-purple cocktail dress. She had red shades, seeming to cover her eyes and overall figure. Hair, deep purple, in a side-cut bob. An elegant, classy secretary.

“Stop. Please. I don’t want to hurt you anymore,” she pleads, panting. “Besides... I... I’m sorry William. I am.”

At this, Ethan could see the Lampent convulse. His form, as if through demonic influence, began to change against his will. High pitched screams echoed through the area, transforming from a Pokemon’s... to a human’s. The same voice, that was all so familiar, all those years ago.

“Fucking hell BELIAL!” the ghost boy shouted.

He was wearing a black, circular paperboy cap atop shaggy, pearl white hair. A black, corduroy jacket with sleeves a little too long, and cargo khakis with black sneakers. His eyes were ablaze with rage, and small purple embers floated around him. He looked so similar to what Ethan saw in his memories but truly dead and gone.

“Well, hi. Fuck you. Fuck you. You’re okay. And Fuck You,” he pointed at Valeria, Ethan, Marie, and Avery in that order.

“It seems... my patron is now forcing me to explain the terms of my contract. When my sister willingly sacrificed herself... and Theo passed out from blood loss... I had to complete the summoning. I ended up with the most hedonistic, bottom-of-the-barrel asshole to exist. But, I guess that was a good thing...” he trailed off, jealous demeanor and filled with rage.
“I willingly agreed to watch and not interfere. That if Theo could piece together his memories of who was responsible for what happened, and take them down... he’d be mine again. Forever. And that’s all I want. Is to be with him. Not to help a mirror image of him. Yet, the price was... well... I’d be given this new body, and once it was all over Theo’s body would be forfeit. That we’d be together in death. The fact that I’m now able to evolve means... that part of the contract has been fulfilled,” William agrees.

“So, now I know who’s trying to interfere with bringing Our Father back,” the high priestess comments. “Guess you’re useful after all brat.”

“B-Brother I-” Marie begins, before the Lampent runs up and squeezes her tight.

“Marie. Thank you for trying to help us in our last moments. Both back then, and before his body shut down. Even if we may be on opposing sides now... Thank you,” the ghost boy says through joyous tears.

He then runs back to Ethan’s side and stares him dead in the eyes. He could feel all of the disdain, malice, and jealousy swirl through. Did he hate them that much? And then he could see it all melt away, and turn into tears. The boy hugged him tightly, sobbing horribly.

“So, this is touching and all, but is there any purpose to this?” Valeria spoke up. “What I need to do here is done, anyways. Marie, we’re leaving.”

“Wait! Valeria! I promise... I will defeat you!” Ethan shouted, finally feeling like he could speak once more.

“If you can, E-10, it’ll be a welcome surprise. For now, though, I’d focus on tying up your loose ends~” the woman coos in response, before disappearing into the portal with the Gengar.

“Bye brother,” the Gengar gives a somber wave before completely disappearing.

The portal then closes, and everything returns back to normal. Ethan could hear the fighting from outside die down, and the footsteps of his Pokemon catching up. He looked at William, who was still hugging him and sobbing his heart out. And then at Avery, who was still unconscious in his arms.

“I-I hate this Ethan. Seeing people live their lives. Knowing I can’t... I’m sorry if I’ve been possessive. I-I’ve watched my entire life, and afterlife, fall apart. But, I am still your Pokemon. I am still your partner in this, even if we’re not connected like I am to him,” the Lampent blurts out, collects himself, and then changes back to being a Pokemon.

---

The next two days were spent on damage control. Trying to figure out how the ranch would replenish the Pokemon they had lost, as well as making sure Avery had recovered from his wounds. Ethan felt... relieved. He knew who he was now, and what step he finally needed to take. Even if... all of this did feel like supernatural bullshit. But, he was supernatural bullshit.

He was preparing to go back to Fizzytopia. He had no place here anymore, he knew that much. Yet, he didn’t want to leave. He just wanted to stay behind and wished for things to go back to how they used to be. At least Avery looked to be in a better mood, and the two of them decided to... go back to being friends at this moment. Not until Ethan felt like it was right for him to go back into this.

“Ethan, wait!” he heard Avery call for him at the gate.

Turning around, he could see Avery run after him with a Mareep trailing behind him.

“This- This little one here is my Ampharous’s grandchild. The same Pokemon you helped me catch those years ago. So, please, no matter what we end up being, I want you to keep this as a gift as proof of our time together,” Avery stated, and Ethan nodded.

“Alright, you’re coming with me then,” he told the Mareep, who gave him a determined “baa” in response.

Giving Avery one last hug, he could feel the tension in the breeder’s body. Melissa was right, he needed Ethan. Yet, their paths in life were different at the moment. Even if that love was still strong, it needed to temper in the time being apart. At least, that’s... what he would’ve said. Letting go, Ethan said one last goodbye before leaving through the wooden arc.

He soon found himself on a boat towards New Fizz City. Lucas stood at his side, while William, in human form, leaned over the guard rail. He didn’t know how he’d explain all of this to Leo, especially, well, the whole we have another mouth to feed. He could tell that the boy only wanted to stay in the form of a Pokemon when necessary, or when they were adventuring proper.

“Hey, Ethan?” William spoke up, voice as soft as it was in his memories.

“Yeah?” the homunculus responded.

“You’re in love with both of them. You know you can only choose one, right?” The Lampent looked at him with somber eyes.

“I think... It’s best if I let them both go,” he answered with a cough, the taste of blood on his lips. “If anything, once they’ve worked through their shit... I might try and have them meet.”

“Guess not everyone needs romance,” the ghost boy shrugged and then turned back to look towards the sea.

“No. I know... I know who I need to find. Besides, I’m sure it’s someone you want to talk with,” the trainer chuckled

“Are you- ugh. Fine. Fuck a demon. Everyone wants to fuck a demon.”

“Devil.”

“Same difference. Well, guess I know who I need to speak with then,” the Lampent moaned.

“Hat Witch?”

He got a begrudged nod in response. The two of them chuckled, while the Raichu looked positively clueless. Oh well, this was the next chapter in trying to figure out his life. Now that he was completely free from the chains of his past, he had a goal. Defeat his creator. Even if he needed to bathe in blood... It would only make it all the sweeter. On that road to find his Eukrasia.


----------

In that distant incubator, beneath that decrepit cabin north of Virbank, something stirred. A large crack suddenly formed in the tube, causing the goo to burst forth. Yes, the vessel was ready. It was, after all, by his will that the boy was able to make it here. Even if his clone was running around, what was prized was here, in stasis for all those years. He was promised this body, and it was time to take it.

“Contract... complete.”

A devilish laugh echoed through the room as the body moved. Cloaked in darkness and hellfire, clothing soon took shape around the man’s body. Dark brown hair lost its pigmentation into ashen white, hazel eyes burning away into crimson. Grotesque, pointed horns solidified from purple hellfire, before fading away with the flick of a wrist. A glamor, to blend into the populace.

A black leather bomber jacket, decorated with studs and excessively unneeded belts. This gives way to a purple graphic tee with a spray-painted insignia of “Give Them Hell”. Ripped, beaten-up dark blue jeans with even more unnecessary belts... held up by an actual black leather belt. Attached to the hips was a smile “cage”, holding the flickerings of the body’s soul. To finish, studded black leather boots that crackled with every step. Stylish shades soon formed in the figure’s hands, before being placed atop the body’s face.

Looking at a dirtied mirror in the room, the man gave it a click of the mouth with finger guns.

“Hey, there sexy... Mmm, the things I’ll do now that I have an anchor here. For mortals, Belial is in the house!” he shouted to a seemingly empty audience.

“Now, time to have a little fun while that boy desperately tries to find me. Yet, I want that homunculus... he’ll be useful in more ways than one,” he says, holding up the cage. “Your boyfriend has tried so hard to be with you, you know? He’s been a good boy and followed our contract to a T. If only your mother didn’t interfere... I would’ve had this years ago.”

He shrugged, giving a hearty laugh. He manifested a shining red apple in his hand and took a bite. Blood soon dripped out, before quickly stopping. Tossing it up, the Devil devours it with a singular bite. Man, was the forbidden fruit all the sweeter in mortal form. He then began walking up the steps, ready to raise hell.

“We’ll drive those beings out of our world, one way or another. Just... follow the taste of blood. You’ll find me,” he chucked, setting fire to the building as he left with a snap.

He then disappeared into the woods, content to partake in as much hedonistic pleasure he could. For he was using the spawn of Yog-Shoggoth as his vessel, he could take anything he wanted. And with his charisma, new looks, and carefree attitude, he more than would. For, he was the chalice all drank into sweet, bloody depravity. If anyone could overcome him, his heart was theirs.
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


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Old 01-23-2022, 09:20 PM   #17
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Litwick Interlude

The smell of bread was beginning to waft through the cathedral, showcasing lost motherly love. In her office, the leader of this Church sat, reading through old newspapers. It had been years... yet she was still searching. Still investigating. Picking up the tiniest of crumbs, to try and take down the monster that killed her family. Well, what she considered her family.

Taking a look at the photo on her desk, the day she graduated High School, her entire family was around her celebrating. The last photo before the fire, when the facade of the family was there. Even so, she knew. She knew what was lurking beneath the surface... And knew she had no way to stop it then. Perhaps, even now, she had no chance to stop it.

A Florges shuffles around the room, recovering from her recent loss. She carefully makes a pot of tea, using an herbal blend to help ease aches. The smell soon mixes with the bread, and the harmony heightens the scents of both. Even if, in the grand scheme of things, this was a basic combo, it meant more to the woman than anyone knew.

“Did I ever tell you, that she taught me how to bake? A mother, passing down her domestic secrets to her daughter. When she was home from her work, that was...” the woman sighed, pulling out a file.

It was stamped with a massive “confidential” in bright, bold red. Opening up was a picture of a little girl... and next to it was the woman who had just entered the cathedral. Coselle Ette, now known as “Minerva” after her rebirth. Cause of death, homicide. And as a Banette... well, she grew to massive infamy in the region. Even before the woman had arrived here.

“To think, all of that suffering and pain could be born from betrayal. I, too, am familiar with that pain. The dullest dagger hurts more than the sharpest sword,” she continued.

A knock on her door caused her to close the file and put it back into her cabinet. With a simple “come in”, one of her fellow Sisters soon entered the room. Daily report, of those who had come in that day, and what services they had provided. As well as the costs for any supplies used. Even then, it was not of major consequence.

“Right, Sister, how is our recruit faring?” the woman asked.

“She is currently downstairs with Sister Thandiwe, sewing up a stuffed rabbit for a little girl who fled here,” the Sister reported. “Anything else, Your Glory?”

“No, not for now. Please have someone bring me my portion of bread when it is ready,” she curtly replied, and waited for the door to close.

She felt... an odd feeling twist in her stomach. She looked at the photo once more. Father... Bryce... Travis... All of them died that day. Her only surviving brother was amnestic before setting foot in this region. And then, gone without a trace, with someone of similar visage arriving two years ago.
Yet, she knew who remained. Who was responsible for their deaths. Ironic, their titles were similar. Like mother, like daughter. Even then, with her false name, as ridiculous as it was, she was a whole new person now. Despite those dissonant whispers from aberrant horrors... the wards were more than enough. Wards were set up as soon as she left Unova, shortly after graduation.

“Never to be remembered... As it should. If he tried to remember me... it would be obstructed and scrubbed. Best if no one knew I existed, from back then...” she stated solemnly.

A cup of tea was then served from her Pokemon, and she began to drink. The woman had a lot of day-to-day work that needed to be done. The past needn’t be dwelled on anymore, at least for the time being. Every woman here was here for a specific reason, to shed their pasts. A new start.

She then once more hears knocking on the door and states she’s busy. Yet, it continues, and she relents after a few minutes. Yet, no one comes in. Well, not by opening the door anyways. She just watches as a dark portal appears from the door, and a... very familiar face walks in.

“Brother!?” she shouts in shock.

This was a very familiar visage, at least, from the photos she had seen. Of her second brother, the survivor, fully grown up. Yet, he looked off... for his hair pigments and eyes crimson. His attire was also nothing like he would wear as a child. His demeanor, too, was completely off. No, this wasn’t him.

“Mmm, hello there. It’s fun, lockpicking protection. I mean, being honest here, these were hard to crack. Both the seal on his memories, as well just being able to get in here,” she heard in response. A deep, husky voice that oozed with charisma... a very dangerous charisma.

Pulling up a chair, her brother’s doppelganger? She wasn’t sure, sat in it, and kicked back. Legs crossed up, feet directly on her desk. This was rude and obnoxious, but the woman could tell this person was dangerous. Extremely dangerous.

“Hey little guy, say hi to your sister,” the man whispers, holding up a small cage from his belt. A blue, bouncing orb...

“Who... No. What are you?” she demands, her tone protective and disturbed.

“One of the Kings of hell, and the most garbage, worthless being you’ll ever meet, Belial at your service. But, hmm, a human alias is needed... Lyle. Let’s go with Lyle,” he introduces himself with a careless chuckle, after a second of pondering.

“A devil on the sacred ground... Well, great. First, that woman comes in. Second, this. What’s next?” she says sarcastically, clearly not in the mood to negotiate with the man.

“Well, someone feeding an Elder Diety. Sure you wanna know about that, don’t cha?” he responds to her, nonchalant. Great. Perfect.

“I came here to escape. To live out a new life, and barely reminisce on my own time. So, if this is who I think it is, I don’t care. That bitch can do what she wants,” she grits through her teeth.

“Even when your brother’s lover and his sister are involved?” he continues pressing her, voice smooth and non-caring. Odd, considering the pointed questions.

“I thought they were dead? Well, in this world the dead can come back to life... And even reincarnate. So, that’s a moot point. Still, I have no say in this,” she replies, trying to control her anger.

“Mmm, fair enough. Right, your brother’s body is more than good. Turns out a former vessel is surprisingly compatible. Blame his boyfriend for that,” he replied in a sing-songy voice. “Though, Natalie, I do hope you consider my offer.”

He then disappears into smoke, and the woman blinks. Her brother’s body, his soul, and even his full memories? This creature was dangerous but didn’t seem malicious. More, he needed help from her to stop her mother. If that was the case, then, she needed to leave. Now.

Storming out of her office, she told Sister Brunetta she would be taking leave. No one questioned her. For she was their leader, and it was often she needed to head out to the field. After all, the Traveling Sisters traversed the world to follow her teachings. As she headed down to get her supplies, she passed the woman. Something was off, but her rage and frustration overpowered her. She needed to do this, and she would. She was done running from her past.
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


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Old 05-09-2022, 06:08 PM   #18
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Togepi PokeTales: Ascension

"O angel deprived of light and wings... let thy misery cage mine enemy."

Custard sighed, looking at the ruins of the castle around him. This trek was his alone to take, and one that he needed to do. Leo had entrusted him with this mission, and he wasn't going to fail. The power spots were becoming to get more and more unpredictable as of late, and the constant stream of people at the Saccharine Sweets gym looking to take down what spawned even more so. So, as much as his trainer wished to come with him, the Pokemon knew that he held an important duty as the Fairy Gym Leader.

Still, he didn't exactly expect his search to lead him here... Riviera, the Promised Land. Well before his trainer stepped foot onto the region, this section had been abandoned to time. Deemed too dangerous for the general populace, especially with the reports of angelic and demonic beings running amok. The natural populace had abandoned their villages, and no more wild Pokemon could be found... only ash and bone. Yet, he could feel the calling of power here.

Besides, he was one of the strongest Pokemon currently active in the region! There was no way he'd lose, even if he wasn't fully evolved. That was a blessing, however, as an eviolite pendant was tucked beneath his bandana scarf. The Team Skull cap that was atop his spiky head, and the bandana around his neck, belonged to his trainer... it was reassuring, despite the bloodied memories tied to them.

He had bypassed multitudes of traps, and vanquished many foes at this point. He was deep within the halls of Lacrima Castle as of this time, taking a rest in a safe room. The bag of berries he had with him served him well, keeping him healthy as he explored this place. What, exactly, he was looking for he hadn't the foggiest of ideas. He could just feel the pull... feel the call.

Getting up, well rested, the Togetic flutters out of the room. He just had to follow the pull, and achieve what he wished for: power. Power to protect his trainer no matter the cost. He would soar as high as he could, and brave the darkest of hells for Leo. That was Custard's devotion and purpose. A guardian to make sure his trainer never befell harm again. For, protecting him was his catalyst for evolution.

Pausing for a second, Custard could feel a cold pull coming from the door to his right. Turning his head, he noticed a spiral staircase heading downwards. So far, he was ascending, trying to reach the throne room. Yet, there was a part of him that could resist it. The pull was strong, and he followed.

Going down the stairs, the Pokemon realizes exactly where he was heading. The dungeons. What dark, hollowed souls haunted that domain? The condemned? The lost? The vile? Icy power emanated through it, a foreboding and warning to the angelic egg. Whatever was locked away, was something he did not want to trifle with.

Stopping before the dungeon door, he could feel it be as cold as ice. His little arm-appendages grasp around the handle, and he pulls with all his might. It takes a few seconds, but the Togetic manages to open the door. As he does, a wave of dark malice washes over him, but not a torrent of souls. No, it was... sadness, misery, and acceptance. That whoever was chained here had accepted their fate.

"Who goes there?" a calm, masculine voice asks.

"The name's Custard! the Pokemon shouts as he rushes into the door, ready to fight a potentially dangerous foe.

Stopping, he looks for a second to see the captive. A man with short, chestnut brown hair sits on his knees in a tattered robe, ankles chained to the floor. His arms are outstretched by the self-same chains, made out of a translucent white metal he had never seen before. Behind him were six large, brown hawk-like wings chained down. He hung his head, not holding his head up to look at the Togetic.

"Heh... a Pokemon. Fine," the angelic man speaks, voice distant. "My name is lost, my actions damned Custard. This is my punishment, to rot in Lacrima as the gods above and below play their invisible game." He finishes, acknowledging that he can understand the Togetic.

"Gods...? I thought there was just Arceus," Custard responded in shock.

"Shards of the original creator. After he had sculpted his children to govern spacetime, the being now known as Arceus spread himself into 18 plates. When the plates were spread, gods were created from them. Unintentional consequence... as well as the multiple realities and dimensions there are now. Multiple copies of the gods all exist, spread throughout multiversal space-time. I am the messenger of the creator," the angel spoke, voice coldly monotonous as he did so. The Togetic was puzzled, not knowing exactly what was going on.

"Forgive me," the man stated, finally looking up to look custard face to face. His eyes were blood red, with circular green tattoos beneath his eyes. The Pokemon felt an uncanny uneasiness here. This man, while angelic, was not like the Grim Angels known from Riviera.

"So, I'm just going to choose to ignore that. If you are meant to be imprisoned here, then I'll leave you to it," the Togetic sighs, ready to head out.

"You wish to protect the person you love, right?" the seraph speaks, and the Pokemon turns around.

"Then, I can help in this state. Consider it a thank you, for respecting my punishment," he continues, causing the Togetic to fly over before standing in front of the man. He was... enormous. Bigger than Leo or Ethan, or just about anyone he met.

Custard watched as the man then looked back down, a single tear falling from his face. It touches the ground, and blossoms into a yellow rose. CUstard then sees what looks like a yellow lightning bolt starting to emerge from the rose. Reaching forward, he goes to pull it out of the flower.

On touching it, all of the memories the Togetic had in his life surged forth. He could feel the power surge, as his life was being judged. This was a power, and enlightenment, he never thought he would reach. In his left hand, he could feel his rage, anger, and hatred surge. It turns solid, into a weapon of pure chaos. Light and Dark, coming together as one within him. That only by his super luck was his brain wasn't destroyed in the process.

The Togetic lets out heavy, rapid breaths as his vision clears. In each of his little hands was a weapon. The right, a sword of divinity... and fey magic. The left, a spear of pure shadow and chaos. Both of them represented him, and he looked up at the seraph confused.

"You have been deemed worthy to wield a diviner, such as the grim angels before you. Their weapons lay broken here, this place was their crypt. THat one... it is called Einherjar, a mass-produced model. Originally nameless, it earned its name after a young grim angel... But that is not a tale to tell here," the chained figure explains.

"I recognize this other one. A Shadow Lance.... pretty common in Fizzytopia nowadays," the Togetic states with a haughty chuckle.

"Now, will you wield your hate? Or will you wield the light?" the angel asks, his eyes gazing into him. Custard could feel his very soul start to turn to ice.

The Togetic looks at the weapons before him, realizing he had to choose one, or the other. No. That wasn't the test here. If he was worthy of both, then he'll use them. Then, as if with a shock, he could feel the sword break in his hands. The divine power starts to leak into him, and he could feel his power grow.

"I vow to wield my love. I will forever, and always, watch over my trainer. I was born to his lonely love, a heart wishing so desperately for comfort and companionship. I evolved to protect him from the man who he loved, and hated, the most at the time. All to protect him. Now, angel, seraph, messenger, whatever the hell you are. That is my oath. An oath of love, to protect and serve, until the bitter end. There is no light if I have no duty. Hate is just the side of love we all choose to ignore" the Togetic swears, the words leaving his mouth before his brain can process what's going on.

"Very well!" the angel shouts and the entire room fills with light.

As his vision clears, the Togetic realizes that he is flying once more. He looks back, his wings enveloped in light and fully angelic. The shadow lance in his hand gripped firmly, feeling the power of luck on his side and he can decimate any opponent that stands in his way.

"Custard... I have never thought I would see a Pokemon ascend. Perhaps... Barachiel had blessed your egg. Whatever it may be, you have reached a higher power. The power of the Einherjar flows through your veins... and perhaps you'll be able to teach others to use it the way you can," the angel muses after a bit of shock.

Custard hones in on one of the cells next to him and sends out the light with a powerful flap. He watches it crumble to dust with ease, the rusted metal being unable to stand up to form.

"Thank you! I'll be able to protect him now... always," the Togetic flashes a cheerful smile as he goes to leave properly.

"I must warn you. Powerful forces are making their moves... this will be the last time you see me, as the door to my prison is only openable by fate. If you can find my brother... help him. He might be a fool, but he has a good heart," the angel replies.

"Yeah, sure, uh..." the Pokemon replies.

The seraph whispers.

Before Custard could reply, he finds himself back in the halls of Lacrima Castle. He could feel his new power coursing through him, as well as his new resolve. His mind was clear, and his oath was there to guide him. The Shadow Lance may be gone, but he knew his trainer had one on hand. Yet, the now Broken Diviner remained with him. Perhaps as a reminder on what he had experienced was real. Yet, if what he was told was true, then dangers were to be expected in the future... If only he had known how soon they were.
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo


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Old 07-18-2022, 09:34 PM   #19
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Litwick Lemegeton

The kiss of the night air kissed his wet cheeks, as smoke and whisky hung in the air. He looked up, sniffling, before wiping his cold face with his arm. The same waiter from earlier that night was before him, and he knew what it was for. Time for all of this to end, and to begin again. Renewal of the contract, pre-preparation of rights. A boy locked in a cage, the raven thus sings.

He stumbles down the stairs and watches the crowds of people soon leave the party room. The boy knew not what had happened here, yet he could feel deep within his soul he didn't want to. He looked into the room and could see some blood-spattered. A fight? Well, whatever, it convinced him not. This was it. All of this was it. It was finally time for his reckoning.

A long, white car sat waiting for him. A Hummer limousine, waiting just for him. Of course, to further drive the point. Yet, he was ready. His sobering experience just now made him ready, and he was more than just rage. He wasn't going to ignite over this. No, he had his own two feet and needed to stand on them. No more arson, no... he had to be there for the people he cared about.

He entered the car and felt the leather seats stick to him. It was a small, sectioned-off section of the party vehicle. He was positive that whatever was going on in the main part, he wanted nothing of. Yet, he could feel his skin turn to ice, his entire body freezing with fury as he saw the form before him. That rat bastard did this on purpose. To parade around...

"How fucking dare you!?" William shouted, getting ready to lunge. Yet, he could feel himself powerless, stuck in the seat.

The car began to drive, and the city lights began to shift and turn. The man before him sighed and set down a small martini glass. He motioned to the mini bar, and William shook his head. No, he wanted to be sober for this. He refused to let himself be swayed while he couldn't consent.

"William, it has been a long while, has it not?" the man chuckled, his form twisting as the glamor was removed. Large, imposing purple horns and black sclera looked at him, on a visage all too dear to him.

"I figured he-" a cage containing a soul was hung up "wouldn't mind if I borrowed his body. Better than wasting away in stasis in a tube... such a shame too, this is for sure a good body. Just a weak, cursed soul..." the devil spoke, trying his best to egg on the kid without as much as lifting a figure.

"Leave Theo out of this! This is just between us," William responded, tightening his grip on the book in his hands.

"You were the one who dragged him into this. You were the one who sacrificed himself to save him... and look where we're at. It's time to renegotiate the terms of the contract," Belial spoke before tossing the soul cage over to William.

The soul was faint, but still there. It lit up again as it landed in the Lampent's lap, knowing who it was. Yet, due to his nature... A helpless soul. He could feel himself hunger... No. No. No no no no no no no no.

"And if I refuse?" William asks.

"You have two options if you wish to leave. We renegotiate, or you eat him."

The words hit him like a truck. Both choices completely went against what he had worked towards... but he needed to decide what to do. He could just, consume Theo, and the two of them would become one... forever. And then follow the tailor's words, and truly live on his own two feet. Take this new lease on life, and do whatever he wanted.

Or, continue as he did, and continue towards what he truly wanted. This was a delicate situation, and the shining city lights barely helped. He wanted to achieve his goals on his own terms, but he wanted everything. No longer would he just sit back, no, he had the power now to do things on his own.

"Fine... What is it you need out of me Belial?" he asked, voice quivering.

"Your trainer," Belial chuckled.

"Ethan? Both of you want the other? What the fuck," he grumbled, punching the seat next to him before fully deciding to look out the window.

"He is powerful in his own right, so here is what I want. Don't interfere in him getting to me. When the time is right, he will come t obe... following the taste of blood. You are forbidden to interfere to try and stop him. If you are used in helping him, then that does not violate the contract," the devil lays out his terms.

"Is that why you gave me a facsimile of my human body? Why do you give me more autonomy? So you could get your dirty hands on him? The one who is, but isn't, the one I love?" he continued to question, his voice quiet and weak. He could feel the tears starting to well up again.

This was torture. The smells, the lights. This was truly torture and one that he so desperately wished to be free from. Torture that was none like the rest, and just one for him. He held the forbidden fruit in his palms, and all he had to do was partake to escape. To give in to his primal desires and consume... or give in to reason and get further roped along. He was a chess piece in this grand game of life, given one chance to escape off of the board.

He turned his gaze to Belial and could see the man furrowing his brow. GUess this night didn't turn out the way he wanted, either. Good, he deserved nothing. Even so... he helped back then. If it wasn't for him, they wouldn't be in this mess.

"I will, on one condition. Why did you help me, back then?" he asked softly, hugging the cage at this point.

"It was a way to further my goals and the goals of others. His mother is a threat, I am sure you are very well aware of that when you encountered her and your sister. I need humanity, in order to feed and sustain myself. So, it was to help my own survival..." the devil explained, scoffing.

"Then I accept. The end terms are still the same, then? You get her taken care of, and now Ethan, and I get Theo for the rest of eternity. Nothing more, nothing less... Just, one condition on my end," he states solemnly, reviewing the new terms.

"Hmm?" the man cocks his head.

"Find a new body," Williams spits.

"That can be arranged. Now, you can keep the book, but I'll need the soul back. Leverage, after all."

Williams begrudgingly complies and walks over with the soul cage. He holds it tightly, tears falling onto the small wisp of energy as he walked. Yet, another goodbye. It's always goodbyes, and never hellos. This, he hoped, would be the last time. The last time he would need to say goodbye to Theo. That, one day, they would truly be together again. No matter the form, no matter the medium. Just the two of them, together... amongst the sea of stars and souls.

He turned back and sat down only for the vehicle to stop. With a nod, he got out. Ah, the train to the City of Pentacles. Looking back at the limo, he could see Belial give him a nod. This wasn't the fun and games from the night before. No, this was serious. That woman needed to be stopped. Not for his own personal stakes, but for everyone.

Easily finding a seat on the rail, the kid looked out the window. Various memories started to flow through him, and he gripped the book tightly. From the day they met, to the days they had spent together, alive and in undeath. Then to their final goodbye.

-

It was a cold, rainy night. The willow tree was mostly abandoned, Theo's Pokemon having all been dispersed to various trainers or the adoption center. Some, like his sister Marie, had ended up disappearing. So, it was just him and Theo. The Litwick looked at his trainer, a bit confused. His memory was failing him, his body was failing him.

"Hey Wisp... we're going to Unova," the trainer muttered to his Pokemon.

The Litwick nodded, a knot forming in his chest. He knew exactly what this meant, even if Theo didn't. The human was moving purely on instinct at this point, and was like a zombie. Just moving around aimlessly, trying his best to live on day by day. This willow tree, their home, would become abandoned forever.

The flight to Virbank was silent, and the candle tried his best to provide warmth. This was it, the end. Nothing more, nothing less. He didn't want to have to say goodbye again, but the mysterious illness was claiming his trainer.

It was the dead of night when they arrived, and William did his best to guide his trainer. He was moving on his own and knew exactly where he was going. He was forced to, a puppet whose strings were being pulled. Guiding his trainer back to the site of the fire that claimed him.

"I'm sorry Wisp... but... please... stay here..." Theo started to cough up blood and took out Wisp's Pokeball... Before activating the release mechanism. "I-I'm going to be with him again... See him again..."

"I'm right here Theo! I've been here the entire time!" William tried to please, tears willing. Yet, he could not leave this place now. He could feel it, he was rebound.

"It's okay... someone will... catch you... and give you a new home... I'm sorry... but my... time.. is almost up..." his trainer told him, before turning around and heading into the darkness.

William tried to reach out, scream, anything. No, he refused to let things end like this. But, he couldn't. His fate was sealed, to wait here until they met again. Even so, the loneliness was already gripping him. Nothing could warm him now... and he vowed to keep Theo close to him next time. When they met again... whenever it was...

-

And he let him go. And he had to, for the other choice was to eat him. That... that would defeat the entire point. This past decade was hellish, with him trying his best to just save one person. That's all he wanted to do. All he needed to do. Was save one person. He couldn't even do that now, could he? He just rested his head on the rail's window and cried himself to sleep. For this night of sin and debauchery was over now. For dawn would come, and with it renewed purpose. He wouldn't fail again.

"Please... save me."
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo

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Old 08-01-2022, 09:39 PM   #20
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Togepi Droplets


How many years had it been, since he had last set foot here? How many months? Days? Minutes? Seconds? He knew not. He had broken away, from this miserable place. This place bathed in sin and blood, beaten in by the rain. Yet, nothing had changed. Sure, the buildings had started to erode away... yet that was fine. This place would never be given another chance. Another day. Only rain.

Taking a step into this waterlogged hell, he took in a deep breath. Memories danced across the graffitied streets. Everything was so vivid and clear... so painful. No, he had to stop remembering. Those memories only brought out pain. The pain of happy, abusive days. Memories of someone who was too immature to try and attempt something as complex as ‘love’. A melancholic masquerading as the sanguine. Yet, that was still the story of who he was.

He continued to walk, feeling the rain hitting him. He was too used to this, especially where he had moved. It was a comfort and a reminder. That no matter what he did, he could never escape the past. Escape his memories. Escape the rain. The rain that had guided him. The rain had comforted him. The rain that had abused him. Soft, icy sweetness... and sharp, humid daggers. The weather was a complicated mix of both sides of the coin called love...

To his side was his partner in life, his trusted confidant who would always be by his side. The Togetic flapped his wings, trying his best not to stray to his old haunts. No, they were here to be together. They were here because they wanted to be. Because they needed to be. And, that was perfect. That, no matter what, they would always care for each other. They would raise the other to new heights, to fly high above the rainclouds to see the sun above. Yet, they had to sink beneath once more... to finally bury old memories.

Hesitantly, Leo reached out toward the door of his childhood home. Well, it really only became a home once his parents had left. Yet, that was neither here nor their situation. They were long gone, living the lives that they had wished they did when they were younger. Sometimes, it’s healthiest to be alone... and that was something he was still coming to terms with. Ever since those days last fall, he had been learning those lessons. Learned how to live, and how to work, with those lessons in mind. It was hard, sure, but it was freeing.

The blood on the wall was still there, staining the paint. It was faint at this point, but he could see it. He reached towards his neck, tugging slightly on his choker. He could feel it, the phantom pain from so many years ago. And the thrill that came with it, the let loose and purposefully hurt someone. It was a painful drug, wasn’t it now?

Coughing a bit, he walked towards the wall and just stared at it a little bit. He did this... To protect himself from something worse. Even so, he enjoyed doing it all the same. Was he the problem there? No, it went both ways... They were young, foolish... toxic. Two teenagers dealing with emotions and concepts well and truly above their heads. The pain, the drugs, the sex. All of it above their heads, and yet he enjoyed it all the same.

He looked away, looking at the broken mirror in the living room. The reflection of his past self was staring back at him, the same one he had seen before. The young teen, in a bloodied euphoric state. This pain and abuse... stuck with him. Made him crave it, but he needed to be better. He couldn’t sink back. Where he was now, he was very close to slipping back... And this trip would determine if he would rebound back to how he was a decade ago.

Four seconds in... seven seconds hold... eight seconds out. He repeated the breathing exercise a few times, trying to calm himself. The past was a part of him, clear as day, and it would never leave him. The smell of hair dye and the tightness around his neck wouldn’t leave so easily. No, not especially after that visit last year. It was a reminder, of who he was. What he wanted to be. And how far he had grown. One day, he would need to meet the rakshasa of his past, and defeat it.

He made his way towards his bedroom first. The stench hit him hard, and he gagged a bit. He had forgotten the squalid conditions he had let himself live in after a while. Still, he pressed on, looking at the beaten, stained, and torn mattress. The things that occurred there, he dared not even utter. Depravity and debauchery at its finest, in shells too young to truly understand. Other corners of the room he could barely even bring himself to look at... with there only being one spot clean. Sans years of dust.

“This was where your spot was Custard,” he muttered to the Togetic, who had soon begun to use Aromatherapy on entering the room.

The Pokemon chirped in response and fluttered over to inspect his own things. The Pokemon dug beneath a small Togepi-sized bed and pulled out a musty journal. The Pokemon set it down and patted off a layer of dust before blowing another off. He then opened the book and giggled at the very shitty handwriting. Leo headed over before peering over the Pokemon to read the pages.

“This is...” he gasped for a second. “Our old recipe book!”

His shout reverberated through the empty house, piercing the rain. His was their hope and their motivation for moving forwards. All he could do that day was cower... until a hand had reached out. Right, he was saved by Big Sis that day from completely spiraling. He had forgotten that despite how terribly things ended, he had hope. That there was hope for the future, and that he did have people, and Pokemon, who truly cared for him. He had forgotten... after all of these years.

He chuckled a bit, before sitting down next to Custard. He let the Togetic flip through each page, letting him chirp each grandiose idea the duo had concocted. Like when he was a kid, and the Pokemon was a newborn Togepi. The laughter caused him to become the heart. The heart, and hope, that kept everyone going. The pure, innocent heart is not yet corrupted. And he broke.

He could feel tears run down his cheeks as the Togetic read each page aloud. Sniffles, and memories, as he remembered everything tied to each thing. The time he couldn’t have a birthday cake... the time Mira wished for her mother’s Kalosian sweets... the time Jacob wanted a Casteliacone... the time Taiga wished for daifuku... the time... the time... the time. The time. The time. The time. Thetimethetimethetimethetimethetime!

He was hyperventilating at this point, the anxiety crawling up his throat. This was terrible, really terrible. Even if he had talked about things, he hadn’t truly looked back. This was it, to let everything be laid bare. To let things out, and let them go. At this point, he could feel a small arm rubbing his leg, his Pokemon trying his best to reassure him. Always there, always protecting... A broken mess like him certainly needed it.

“Thank you, Custard,” Leo sighed in response, moving his glasses to rub his eyes free of the tears.

Getting up, he asked his Pokemon for the book. With a nod in response, he took the book in hand and put it in his satchel. He was the one who made sure things here kept running. And yet, he couldn’t even keep himself running. Everything that made this house a haven for the kids of the bunch was long gone. Everyone was gone, scattered to the winds wanting to experience their own life. Freedom, a falsity that they had all lived under... was now true.

He made his way out of his old room resolved to never look back. This was it, it was time to accept things and move on. Room by room, he walked through the remains. Let his emotions process, and let himself stop once things got to a point where he wouldn’t be able to handle it. Breathe, calm down, and repeat. The other rooms hadn’t hit him too hard, and everything else was still the same. Yet, he couldn’t help but feel that things aren’t truly done. No, there was one room that no one was allowed to go into...

Gulping, he reached his hand towards the master bedroom door. A time capsule, of the time before Team Skull had overrun Po Town. No one had entered it since that night when his deadbeat father had been ousted and exiled. He had never heard from either him or his mother but knew they were still around. It was better... they weren’t a family. Just people tied together by circumstance, nothing more than that.

Seeing the dust, and feeling the cold air... everything was normal here. A small office desk covered with a few papers, and a neatly made bed. He took one step in and felt a chill. He looked at his partner, and the Pokemon gave him a puzzled look. Okay, at least this wasn’t the supernatural. More... intuition than anything else.

He continued forwards and started to investigate the room. There was almost nothing here... just barren emptiness. The papers were just receipts of purchases and work papers. Yet, he noticed something odd on the desk. A picture of his mother... Despite every other one being expunged from the house when she left. Did his dad... actually love her? He felt a pain in his heart and looked towards the bed.

Moving on his own, he immediately lifted up the mattress. He felt... he could feel it. Scanning the darkness, he noticed something hidden beneath the baseboards. Looking at Custard, the Togetic flew over and quickly grabbed it. Letting go of the mattress, Leo instead sat atop it. Damn, he had wished he had this bed. Even if his younger self would refuse to come in here. He shook the bed, right?

In his lap was now an envelope, handed to him by his trusted partner. It was labeled ‘Chrys’, and he gulped. It was for him. His true self, who was so desperately grasping for air. Reaching for something, anything, to be alive. To be heard. To be seen. The lost boy was thrown out so long ago, wishing for freedom from his mental cage. Quivering, he slowly ripped open the envelope and began to read.

‘Dearly Beloved,

I’m sorry for abandoning you. It was a decision I made with a heavy heart, but I could no longer be here. I felt like a bird trapped in a cage, and needed freedom. Things weren’t how I wanted them, and my life was at a point where I was losing myself. So, I had to leave, to save myself. I know you will never forgive me, and I’m fine with that. Just know I still love you.

Regardless, you were named after my favorite flower... the Chrysanthemum. Your father and I agreed, Chrys for a boy, Santhe for a girl. I wanted Mumsy but was shot down by the rest of my family... So, please know that whenever you see that flower, you feel your mother’s love. I may not have much more to give you, but please hold this photo dear to you. You deserve, at the very least, to see your family happy once in your life. Take this, as my final gift to you, my love.
-With all my heart,
Mom.”

He looked at the dog-eared, warn photo included. It was of a time he could not remember, of when he was a small toddler. His Mother was laughing, and his dad was hoisting him up with a smile. He had cake all over his face, and a party with the number 3 on it. His third birthday.

The tears were already falling by the time he could process everything. The two people, who had done such a poor job in raising him. The two people, taught him everything that was wrong in a relationship. The two people, who left him alone and let everything around him fall apart... They had loved him at one point. That, at one point, he was wanted. He was cherished. That he didn’t need a replacement family, he had a real one, in another time, another place.

Sure, he had another family in Team Skull, but they had abandoned him too, in a sense. Even as he had helped everyone else, he had never helped himself. And, in this cold dusty room, he realized. That love was the cruelest malady in the world. For it was something that could wound as bad as a knife. Leave worse scards, and still bleed years later.

Getting him, after who knows how much time, he pocketed the photo. He hadn’t seen Custard for a while and called out towards the Pokemon. The fairy-type fluttered in, carrying a photo in his own hands. Another buried memory? No, it was another reminder. And this one made his heart sink even further. That he, in fact, did have multiple real families.

It was a group photo, that everyone had taken the night Taiga had arrived. The grumpy scowl he had learned to love, the laidback attitude of his older brother, the sweet mischief of his older sister, and his naivety and innocence, hiding darkness. The smiles and laughter... they were also real. Yet, this hurt even more. For he knew what had broke along the way. The mistakes he had made, and the actions he took. For he had learned what selfishness was then... and took it way too far. He took this one and pocketed it as well.

For now, he had no more tears to shed. No more droplets to signify the rain. The storm within was slowly starting to break. He got up, somber, solemn, sober. He hugged Custard, before starting to head out of the house. It was time to go, and finally, leave everything behind. Taking one look back at the letter on the bed, Leo sighed and went back to take it.

“No more leaving people behind... No more forgetting people... No more... I’m tired of it!” he shouted, grabbing the letter with fierce determination. “This is where I experienced so much, and I’m never going to forget it. I’m not going to bury it. I’m not going to run away anymore, LEO!”

The shout reverberated through the building, the intensity causing the broken mirror to fully shatter. This was it. It was time to reforge himself... Not as “Chrys”. Not as “Leo.” As himself.
__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo

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Old 09-14-2022, 04:55 PM   #21
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Litwick Egeiro

"Life is just a series of meetings and partings."

---

It's been about a year since everything started. Well, ten months, but it had certainly felt longer. Three-hundred and sixty-five days. When compared to a singular unit of measurement, it certainly was longer. Even if what quantified that unit of measurement felt... arbitrary. Though the events of this year weren't nearly as explosive as the last's, it was still hectic.

Staring out the window, he could see the September rain starting to pick up. Leo's birthday was soon... his creation date was soon... the kid's birthday was soon. The sixteenth of September was yet another day to him. It held no meaning. Birthdays were just a reminder of the passing of time. Linear time. Nonlinear time. Torturous, really.

Taking a sip from the mug of coffee on his desk, the homunculus continued to pile through books and papers. Tomes of ages past, theories of futures forward. The ripples of Dialga's Gate had permanent altered the fabric of reality here... a tear that held terrible consequences.

"It was small first. Devils such as Belial... Angels such as Metatron... Making their presence known as it started to weaken. Then it happened... and what followed was worse. Nyarlathotep. Nibiru. Vulthoom. These isolated instances are part of a grander scheme," he speaks aloud, writing his thoughts in some dog-eared notebook.

"BROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOTTTTTTTTTHHHHHHHHHHEEEEEEEEEEEEE EEEERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!" a harrowing legion of souls scream out, a rock dropping from the ventilation shaft.

"Yes, Aniue?" the homunculus replies, not even moving his head.

"Frieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeennnnnnnnnnnnndddddddddddddd ddsssssssssssssssssssssss........Neeee---eeeeee----eeeeeee----eeeewwwwwwwwwwwwwww ffffffffffrrrrrrrrrrrrrrriiiiiiiiiiiiiiiieeeeeeeee eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeennnnnnnnnnnnnnddddddddddddddddssss ssssssssssss!!!!!!!!!!!!" the creature explains through stifled laughter.

"And here I thought William was a handful," he sighs out. "If only he would be more cooperative and give me that book."

"Anyways." He gets up from his chair, donning the same rugged outfit as always. He closes the book behind him, and looks at the Spiritomb before him. "You get to go back into your Pokeball."

The Pokemon starts to sniffle and cry.

"Look, until you can function as a singular entity like most of your species, you're too dangerous to be around others," the trainer explains, grabbing a Pokeball. "Even if you are technically the older 'brother' here."

The Spiritomb gives a blank face at that, soon absorbed into a beam of red light. The Pokeball is then placed on top of the notebook. With a solemn nod, the homunculus moves across his room towards his bed. It reeked of cigarettes and whisky at this point, and he yanked off the covers.

"WILLIAM!" he shouted.

A groggy teenager looks up at him, eyes dead as his soul. Whatever the hell had happened back then was still affecting him, perhaps much worse now than it was a few months back. Sure, the creature in his bed was how old he actually looked, but mentally and physically was still fourteen at most.

"Fuck off Ethan, let me sleep..." the kid whined, starting to cover his eyes with his arm.

"No. You are still my Pokemon, and thus it falls onto my responsibility to take care of you," he replied, rubbing his brow in frustration.

"Then hold me," the Pokemon whined, getting up.

"If you put on more than your underwear, then I'll think about it," Ethan replied, getting tired of this.

The undead teen groans, and slinks out of the bed. Rummaging around the floor, he manages to produce clothes that were bought for him. He was needed less and less for battles these days, and thus preferred to sick in the humanoid form "gifted" to him by his patron. It was frustrating for his trainer, to have to deal with this.

Speaking of frustration, skin was soon mixed with skin. Arms wrapped around the other, and William's head nestled into Ethan's chest. Not the person he wanted there. Not the person he ever thought would be there, if he was honest. When it was with Avery, this was nice. When he and Leo cuddled like this that one summer night, it was nice. But with William? It was an awkward mix of wanting to, but at the same time being repulsed.

The building blocks of his body were made from were in love with him, after all. Yet, his mind, and who he was, did not feel that way at all. A close confidant, but both of them were using each other for their own goals. Goals that were made well before they had met, and were only here as a means to an end. Still, it had come to this these past few months.

"Are you done yet?" Ethan asked, eyes dully staring at the ceiling.

"Yeah. Sorry man, I know don't exactly like this," the Lampent replied, getting up.

"I don't like a lot of the stuff we've been doing, but that doesn't mean I can exactly stop it. My body won't let me stop, and you need it," Ethan sighs out.

"Even if you're not him... It helps. I can't stop, this body is destroying my brain and I hate it. I don't have my autonomy anymore, between this and that damned book," the Lampent sighs out, getting up.

"I know this is about the fifth time I've asked, but what is that book?"

The Lampent gazes out the window for a second, eyes starting to glaze over.

"I can-" his eyes then pop back to life. "Can? It's the Lemegeton, otherwise known as the Lesser Key."

"And I'm guessing I still can't read it," the homunculus sighed, getting up from his bed.

"No can do, sorry. Ask Rosemary about it, if you see her," William awkwardly chuckled, grabbing a pack of cigarettes hidden beneath the bed.

"You're actually going out?" the trainer asked, and got a nod in response. "Well, knock yourself out."

With a cheeky smile, the Lampent disappears from view. The homunculus just shakes his head, and starts to head out of his room. He needs fuel, and the smell of pumpkin was starting to raise from the kitchen below. Yes, that would be good.

He heads down the hallway and sees the menagerie that was his and Leo's teams interacting. He gets a few different responses and greetings from his Pokemon and treats them in kind. With how things have been, he hasn't been spending time with them as much as he's been wanting to.

"Lucas!" he shouts, and the Raichu bolts straight up to him with a volt tackle hug. He feels the electricity course through his circuitry, and he squeezes the electric-type back even harder.

"Love you too bud," the trainer reassures his Pokemon. "Sorry for having to kick you out last night."

He sets the Raichu down, and starts to feel a little light headed. He feels something drip down his face, and the taste of iron touches his lips. Looking at the kitchenette mirror, he sees his nose starting to bleed. That was odd, considering Lucas hit him square into the chest. He quickly plugs his nose to stop the bleeding, and then heads down the stairs.

The smell of coffee and pumpkin soon start to overwhelm him as he heads into the cafe below. It looked to be a bout mid-day rush, as various members of the community were here talking through. He could hear the hums of the coffee machines as he sees his Pokemon hard at work. He gets a confidant nod from his Pachirisu, and a friendly wave from his Riolu.

With Raichu behind him, he slips into the kitchen behind him. He manages to just narrowly avoid dough flying towards his face as a beater starts to go haywire. Glad he was never conscripted into this, to say the least... And his team just only had to worry about the front end. Well, besides his Dedenne. Though, she was Leo's first.

"Oh, hey!" Leo awkwardly exclaims as he pulls two loaves out of one the ovens.

"Morn'. How's the rush been?" Ethan asks, grabbing a hot pumpkin muffin from a rack before taking a bite.

"Not too bad, being honest. Had a lot more time to focus here since the power spot went silent," the Alolan responded.

"Ever since the Nibiru Incident..." Ethan sighed. "Right, he's out of the room."

"William? I was starting to get worried," the baker replied. "Still, progress. Thyme has told me about some of the details that night. Yet, trying to get more details out of that damn Gardevoir is frustrating, to say the least."

"Anyways, you've been different too lately," Ethan points out.

"Went home, cried a lot. It happens," Leo chuckles, starting to avoid eye contact at this point. "Still, it was a good reminder of who I am. Oh, right, the coffee shipment is gonna be a little late today. Could I bug you to receive it?"

"Uh... Why can't the gossipy Gardevoir do it?"

"Because it's the day of the month our supplier delivers the newest beans, instead of the reoccurring shipment? I trust you more than I trust him."

"And you've mega evolved him," Ethan points out.

"Yes, I trust him with my life, not with my store!" Leo shouts, balancing about eight different things at this point in time. "Oh, why did I let Custard have the day off today."

"Fine, you're still my closest friend, even if things didn't work out," Ethan sighs, crumbling up the wrapper.

"Honestly, I've thought about it, and I'm glad it didn't. Neither of us was in the right state for it," the Alolan states, finally sitting down for a breather. "You had... a lot of identity issues going on. I needed to stop running from my past. We work better together as friends."

"Mmm, you're not wrong," Ethan sighs, pulling up a stool to sit next to Leo.

The duo looks at each other and smiles. There's been a lot they've been through, and that bond was unbreakable. Yet, there would be a time when they'd both need to move on. Say goodbye for now. And that was fine too, that's how life was.

"So, when is this shipment?" Ethan asks.

"In like, fifteen? In case you haven't noticed, the second wave of things comes out of the oven then," Leo chuckles.

With a silent nod, Ethan gets up and takes another muffin. He heads out the back door and stares at the rain. Rainy days... the days that were most comforting to him. Those days that memories were made, and things started to change. Rainy days... were rainy days. No more, no less. And perhaps, today would be one such day. After all, this was the day he'd be meeting someone new.

"I was even told about it earlier, huh," he muses to himself, remembering the Spiritomb's message.

A few minutes later, a small car pulled up. While certainly not big enough to hold a large shipment of coffee beans, there was an air of refinement to it. He saw the driver's door open, and a slender man step out. There, the perfect image of grace looked at him, taking off a pair of sunglasses. Sun-dappled, straw blonde hair looked at him, a perfect smile with sable eyes. It was warm... inviting... yet knowing.

"Well this is a surprise," the man states, putting on a pair of black leather gloves. "Leo's busy then?"

"Yeah, so I'm here, sorry about that." Ethan gets up, and walks towards the man.

"I've seen you before here. You're the roommate then? Leo has told me about you over a cup of coffee," the man closes his eyes and gives a warm smile. "Pleasure to meet you, the name is Sandy."

"That's my Dedenne's name," Ethan chuckles, not even knowing why he is.

"Ah, mine is shorthand. My departed brother use to call me it when we were kids, so I use it in his memory," the man explains. "Anyways, let's go inside. Since my client is busy, yes you'll do... in his stead. There should be an open table."

Fifteen minutes later and Ethan feels thoroughly inadequate in this man's presence. He was... charming, and polite, but had a broody undertone. That the politeness was only there as a formality but was there all the same. Still though, compared to everyone else he had met, there was a certain angelic quality to him.

"So, you see, that's how I managed to meet your friend," Sandy finishes explaining. The words had long since turned to mush under his voice.

"Alright, so, beans. That's why you're here?" Ethan asks, mind starting to fray at its seems.

"Ah, and some lunch. I wouldn't mind if you stayed for that too," the man offers, taking a sip of water.

"Excuse me, but would you two mind sharing a table?" a psychic voice breaks through the conversation.

"Well the official business is over, so I don't see what the issue would be," the man responds to the Gardevoir that was now peering over them.

Blood. The taste of blood rushed through his mouth. Ethan blinked and realized that this was a bad idea. Yet, he couldn't move. No matter what he did, he couldn't. It felt like something was dragging him down... something that was so... intoxicating. So, all he could do was nod.

Sitting next to him was soon a sharply dressed man, with an alluring sweet cologne. To his diagonal was a rather pissed, but dignified woman. She was piercing daggers at the man next to him, and then at him, before scoffing. Yet, this wasn't the only recognition happening at the table.

"Lyle."

"Sandy."

Both names are stated with venom. The air around the table was tense, as food and coffee was soon served to all of them. Time was starting to mix together, and everything becoming a blur. This was all too much to handle... more than what he could handle.

"Ethan, are you feeling well?" the man he had been sitting with this entire time asked.

"I-I'm fine. Just a sudden migraine. It happens from time to time," he replies.

"Well, that won't do at all," the man now next to him coos. Lyle? Wait, no. It was familiar, but it felt off. The man next to him felt that way too. Familiar.

"I do apologize Natalie, but perhaps we should prolong this meeting to a later date?" he then tells the woman sitting at the table.

"I rather not have to interact with you if at all possible, but you are the one needing my help," she states, sighing. "I need to head back to the church anyways."

"Oh, a woman of the cloth?" Sandy inquires, looking her up and down before seeing the roman numeral for two embroidered onto her jacket. "Ah, a traveling sister. I shan't pry then, though you needing their help is quite a surprise, Lyle."

"Our goals align. I'm sure you know about that, don't you?" Lyle responds with a cheeky smile.

"I know about the fiasco at the casino a few months back," the blonde replies. At this point, Ethan is fully attentive. His mind is suddenly clear, and he looks at the man next to him again.

This was a different form for those who had first met him at the casino. No longer parading around in a 'corpse,' instead, this is a human facsimile of his true form. Charcoal black hair swept aside perfectly, with piercing yellow eyes. A sharp grin, and almost ashen skin. Yet, trying its best to discard the formality it was forced into.

"Casino? You were there?" Ethan speaks up, headache starting to worsen.

"It was quite grand, until those two started fighting. Right, I recognize you. You're one of the hotshot trainers of this region, aren't you? Why weren't you there?" Lyle questions him.

"I was busy training," Ethan sighs out.

"Stop pestering the man," Natalie bluntly says. "If you're going to just obsess over him, I'm out."

"I do apologize, but I have that info you need...But, well, people are starting to stare."

"Taking four high-profile people and pushing them into a singular table will do that," Sandy points out, his anger starting to seethe through. Soon, all cordiality will break.

"Especially two who hate the other's guts," Lyle chuckles. "Now, I think it would be best for all of us if we all parted for the day."

"For once in my life, I am inclined to agree with you," Sandy spits back, disgust on his voice.

"Though, you, I shall see later," the devil smirks at the Sister, who leaves without saying a word.

"Right, Ethan, I do need to be leaving now. Please give Leo my regards but, I'll see you around," the blonde gives him a respectful bow before getting up to leave.

"Yes, good," Lyle speaks, before turning to Ethan.

Extending his hand out, he hands over a business card. 'Lyle du Pont' with a number beneath.

"Call me, please. We have much to discuss."

Lyle gets up without another word and shuffles out of the building.

Ethan sits there, shaking his head. Two cards were on the table, two numbers that were soon entered onto his phone. And a new feeling within his chest... one he wouldn't forget. New friends indeed... New friends indeed. One of blood, one of light. Yet, he hungered for both. He needed both. If he was to achieve his goals, he would need both...

For while they would part, for now, he would meet them both again. Privately. Both of them needed to know who they truly were. He had inklings, sure, considering what he's been through. Yet, he'd need to confirm this himself. So, he took out his Rotom phone and texted each individually.

"Hit me up when you're free for a night."
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If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

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Old 09-21-2022, 03:57 PM   #22
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Togepi Sunshower

Everything was changing here, and he knew it. Yet, how, and why, was a different story. The past few months had been awkward, for one reason or another, especially with the confrontation of his past. Though things were looking up for him, and he knew that he would be fine. So, why was he doing this? He didn't honestly know.

Looking at the sunny sky, Leo took in a deep breath. A day off, but another rash decision. Ethan had been... weird lately. Well, weirder than normal. Ever since the day he asked him for help, he'd been seemingly slipping off almost every night. Did he accidentally hook him up? No, it didn't feel like that. Things were different.

Though, things had been different for a long while now. He still remembered the day that his friend had returned from Unova, a teenager in tow. Leo couldn't exactly believe it was the Litwick that was always with Ethan, but it proved to be true. And things had progressively worsened for both of them as the months went on. He knew what was going on, but was too heartbroken to really try and stop things.

So, why was he doing this? He didn't know. Yet, he felt it would help him with his journey to getting closure. Confronting his past already took a lot, and he was still reserved to be himself. Even if he no longer went by his old name, it was still part of him. And unlike before, he was fine with being called it. It was still a facet of him that existed. Just like who he was now was a part of him. And his time in Team Skull was a part of him.

He looked around the city streets, walking to where he needed to go. He was in New Fizz City this time, with only Custard at his side. He wasn't here for adventure, he was here to meet someone. And who it was was the reason why he felt conflicted. Sure, they had never properly met, but he felt they needed to. Unlike the men in his past, friends in his past, this would be different.

Finding the cafe he had agreed on, he entered the door. The hostess blinked for a bit, recognizing him. Well, most people in Fizzytopia recognized him at this point. He was a gym leader, after all, as well as the owner of one of the most successful cafes in the region. Not to mention, one of the safest spots in the City of Pentacles. Yet, he never let fame get to him. He knew better than to let power get to his head... Another mistake from his past.

He was soon let to his table, and he waited. He perused the menu, looking for foods that he could eat. He had requested this location, after all, since it catered to his needs. And catered it did, since he was able to find a few things he wanted. A waiter had already come up to him and asked if he needed anything. Water was what he wanted at this point.

Soon, the person he was meeting was seated across from him. Tanned skin, dirty blonde hair, and dark eyes. He matched the description Ethan had given him, but a few things were omitted. And then he realized exactly why Ethan was with him and felt something in his heart stir. Crap.

"Hey," Leo muttered.

"Hi," the blonde responded.

"Sorry for calling you all the way out here from Unova," the gym leader sighed and got an awkward chuckle in response.

"Nah, it's fine. Honestly, work at the ranch has been stressful lately. So, I'm fine with taking the trip" the man responded in a more jovial tone. "Still, why did you want to chat?"

"I guess... Closure? I'm trying my best to move on still from him," Leo replied.

"Oh... I'm not going to lie, I'm in the same boat. I hadn't seen him for years, and he came back, and I was so happy. Yet, so much happened in that short time, and realized he was someone else. He was in love with someone else," the breeder breathed in, trying his best to calm his emotions.

"And then told me it wouldn't work out. Thinking on it, he was right. I think he was conflicted..." Leo sighed before the waiter approached them again. A few minutes later, after orders were placed, they continued their conversation.

"I know Ethan, at least, did. When he sets his mind to something, he follows through with it. So, if he didn't follow through with you, he must've realized it wasn't going to work," the man continued to conversation.

"It was for the best, I feel. I'm still dealing with a lot, and it most likely would've turned out like my last relationship," he responded. "Still, Avery, what was it like?"

"It was nice, I won't lie. Even if he was reclusive, and didn't really talk about his emotions much... he was there. He was determined. And he opened the world up to me. For that, I'll always be thankful," Avery responded with a somber smile, eyes downcast.

"That's how it was last time... Yet, with a lot more toxic and abusive tendencies. Though, it was the same with you, wasn't it?" Leo questioned.

"Honestly, I think so. I was perhaps too clingy and possessive. It got to the point where I was controlling at times... Even if things didn't get physical, I know I was manipulative. I just-"

"Didn't want to lose him?"

Avery nodded in response.

"How I felt, but I ended up breaking things off. After I beat the shit out of him with a bat. My ex, to clarify," Leo stated, getting a surprising blink from the Unovan native.

"I was part of a villainous organization, after all. Raised within it, and there are still a lot of behaviors I'm working through. I do feel that I'm in a better place, though," Leo chuckled. He could feel that they'd both reached an understanding.

"I've been going to a therapist lately, and it's been helping a lot," Avery then stated. "Thought about it?"

"I have, honestly. I'm just so busy with work that I barely have the time. Between the cafe and the gym league, it's hard to really have free time," Leo responded with an exasperated sigh.

"Well, do you have the rest of the day to yourself?" Avery suddenly asks.

"Yeah... Yeah. Wanna hang out?" Leo asked.

"Was gonna ask that myself—no point in making a trip across the sea to meet someone for lunch. I'm not a champion," Avery joked, laughing a little bit.

So, with a nod in agreement, Leo felt himself get swept up in conversation. Despite their common thread being a romantic interest, things seemed to go surprisingly well. Jokes were made, and he found himself laughing more naturally than he had in a long while. This felt... good. Like he had met an old friend and they picked things up as if no time passed. The last time he felt this way was, well, when he had met his found family.

Once they ate, Leo decided to show Avery around New Fizz. While Castelia was an apt comparison, according to the Unovan, there was a lot different. All of the different districts had their own offerings, and there was something to do around every corner. From shops to games, to Pokemon Battles. Exhibits to go to, and just general sightseeing. Leo didn't even realize that the sun was soon setting, and he looked at the man next to him.

"This was... a lot of fun, wasn't it?" Avery asked him, returning the gaze.

"For sure! Honestly, I haven't enjoyed my time with someone for years. it was fun, just being able to hang out with someone and not feel like I had to fill in the silence," Leo replied, feeling something stir within him.

"Well, then why don't we do this again sometime?"

"Huh?"

"Well, it was nice to be able to just enjoy my time with someone too. You can only be around sheep for so long before going insane!" Avery shouts.

"Yeah, sounds good. Keep in contact then?" Leo asked.

"Yeah man, will do. It's a date next time then," Avery replied, waving him off before confidently disappearing within the crowd.

Leo stood there for a bit, processing the words. 'Date'. He... he felt like when he was with Taiga. Someone to take the lead. Someone who was kind, but stubborn and hot-headed. Someone restless and touchy... Yet, he was calmer. Perhaps it was therapy, but it was something he couldn't help but notice the similarities. And differences.

"Yeah..." Leo muttered, feeling his chest beat. Crap.

Sending out his Pokeball, he looked at Custard. The Togetic gave him a hug, before looking his trainer over. The Pokemon gave a happy giggle, seeming to know exactly what was going on. He was starting to crush on someone again... Yet, he was determined to not be consumed now.

"Let's Fly home," Leo told the Pokemon, who took his hand and started to lift off.

The Gym Leader looked down at the crowd with a small, happy smile. He was ready for what would come next, for even unexpected things could happen. Things that seemed impossible always had a chance to happen... Perhaps, this would be for the best.

__________________


If I had to leave to disappear and leave this world behind, no matter-
All I'd need is your smile
And I wouldn't even mind

Hawke | Leo

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