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Old 02-19-2022, 09:28 AM   #26
Missingno. Master
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As it turned out, Allison was quite familiar with what had happened that day at the Santalune Rhyhorn Racetrack. Maribel nodded to confirm she had the detail right about the rider's disqualification, and listened with interest at the further detail of the rider not being able to earn sufficient points due to the lifetime ban from the Santalune track. It was clear to see that Rhyhorn racing was something of a passion of hers, especially as it took a gentle nudge from Audelia to snap her out of it and get her to realize Maribel was willing to race, even if not with her own Rhyhorn.

This, however, got Allison onto a whole other rambling tangent, this one being in regards to their options insofar as racetracks. There seemed to be two they could use; one that was a clear path, and one that seems like it might not be so much. Maribel listened intently- rambling or not, she could tell that this girl knew a lot about racing, and thus if she was about to take part in a race against her, it would be very much worth her while to listen as she went on about that which she was so passionate. Ruleset was also something to consider- official rules where nothing beyond light bumping was permitted, all the way down to street rules, where everything was fair game short of intentional attempted injury. The clear track seemed an obvious pick, but Maribel had to consider, she and Bouffalant had been doing a lot of work on dodging as of late, not to mention barreling through obstacles while not losing momentum, so as to be able to still charge into the intended target at full power. Would a debris-filled track not serve to put both things to the test? And more to the point, such a racetrack sounded like a fun challenge to Maribel, and she was certain Bouffalant would agree. And as far as the ruleset went... Maribel had to admit there was a certain appeal to the notion of street rules, but she wasn't opposed to doing things in a more official way, either. She figured she would let Allison make the call on that one, since she was going to be deciding the racetrack. Only seemed fair, she reasoned.

...of course, now the issue became getting Allison's attention- even the prospect of actually getting to race didn't seem to be putting a stop to her rambling on the matter. Maribel and Trevenant exchanged looks for a moment before turning back to Allison. Maribel cleared her throat. "Allison? Allison?" She spoke up, trying to get her new friend's attention, continuing to speak only once she had succeeded. "I'm thinking the track with all the debrid would be cool, sounds like a fun challenge," she said. "And the rules... Honestly, I'm not picky," she shrugged. "Street rules sound kinda fun, honestly, but I wouldn't object to something more official, either. What would work for you?" she asked.
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Old 02-19-2022, 06:23 PM   #27
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Allison was near about to launch into a tirade on the specific differences between street tracks and those that are officially sanctioned, down to the very geotextile mixtures that need be used in order for an official track to be considered and how given the ages of the tracks here the chances of anything constituting such a mixture being slim to none. But as she prepared to speak on the matter she found Maribel clearing her throat to get her attention, something that proved fairly ineffective without calling out Allison's name a couple of times thereafter.

"Oh, sorry," the girl shied back a bit, "I uh... I really like racing."

The slightly older girl took a moment to listen to Maribel's decision on the track, and indecision on the rules to be had for the race, before the full decision was tossed back at Allison. "Hmm... the Canine Dash track they have here would likely be a lot more fun..." Her voice trailed off for a moment as she considered the rule set. She did want to have something akin to an official race at some point, but as they were already on the debris covered track, and the girl did come here in hopes of a big break, less conventional rules would mean for more chances to show off to those watching from the stand.

"Okay! We'll run a bit closer to street rules, then. Hard contact, use of moves and other forms of support allowed. Just no intentional injury." It was a bit of a dumbing down of things, but far less potentially problematic than 'the only rule is there are no rules', after all. "And since we're on the short track, how about, say, two laps around?"

Once again Audelia tucked herself under her trainer, though much less forcefully than before, lifting Allison up on her back and into a proper riding position as they awaited an answer.
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Old 02-20-2022, 02:33 AM   #28
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Allison was on a roll. Had she not been stopped, she would have started going into the absurdly specific specifics of what made an officially sanctioned Rhyhorn racetrack worthy of being so, and almost certainly would have had further subject matter to delve into if allowed to, but Maribel was able to catch her attention before it got that far. Apologizing sheepishly, Allison explained, somewhat needlessly, that she really liked racing, though Maribel didn't seem bothered- the interruption on her part had been more out of necessity than anything else, she could tell that this was something Allison was passionate about. But getting back to the race itself. Maribel had decided on the track, but the decision as to the ruleset was left up to Allison, a decision she gave all due consideration- official rules did appeal to her, she was hoping to have something like an official race someday, but a more unconventional ruleset would give her more possibilities for showing off what she could do- this was, after all, what she was hoping to be her big break.

It was decided, then, that they'd go with a ruleset that veered more in the direction of street rules. Hard contact was allowed. Usage of moves, fair game. Other forms of support, no problem. Only real stipulation was no intentional injury, and Maribel was fine with that. Additionally, given the relative shortness of the chosen track, Allison suggested the race be two laps. While she waited for an answer, Allison found herself being lifted back up onto her Rhyhorn's back, albeit more gently this time.

Not that she had to wait too terribly long for an answer, that is to say- Maribel smiled, the proposed rules and lap quantity being perfectly fine with her. "Sounds good to me," she said. The idea was reminding her of the story her dad told her about when Celebi sent him back in time to ancient Cortoza- specifically the Ponyta race he'd taken part in with the Ponyta he would later catch, where the usage of attacks was completely fair game. This race was certainly sounding as though it could be just as exciting, just as much fun, and Maribel for one was looking forward to it.

"Ooh, this is exciting!" smiled Trevenant. "I can watch the race, right, Maribel?" he asked.

"Of course, Trevenant," confirmed Maribel. "First, though, I should fill in Bouffalant about what we're doing," she added, before throwing the Luxury Ball into the air. "Come out- Bouffalant!" she exclaimed. The Bash Buffalo Pokémon emerged in a flash of light, though glanced around at his surroundings before daring to charge, and thankfully restrained himself once he registered his not-so-open surroundings. "Bouffalant, you and I are gonna race against Allison and her Rhyhorn here," explained Maribel. "We're probably gonna be heading for the racetrack now. Are you ready for this?" At this, Bouffalant gave an affirmative bellow, sounding quite excited at the prospect. Grinning at this, Maribel turned back to Allison. "Lead the way," she said.
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Old 02-23-2022, 07:52 PM   #29
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Lyle watched as more and more people came to the roulette table. Good, something that he would enjoy. Seeing them all scramble to raise the odds, raise the stakes as a prayer to lady luck. The first group, a man dressed as a Basara and his Clefairy, placed a rather bold bet on the purple spaces. Next was the couple who came in before him, who politely introduced themselves before talking amongst themselves. They then decided to do a more precise bet, on the purple Wynaut.

"Pleasure to meet you, Diana, Marv," he politely replied with a warm grim. Furrowing his brow, he looked at the outrageously dressed man.

"It is rather rude, to barge in and not introduce yourself. Anyways, you may call me Lyle. Lyle du Pont, at your service," he flashes a grin before looking at the table before him.

With the bets in place, he had to carefully look forward to the results. Manipulation of the game, well that was out of the question. How could he coerce the worst in people if they suspected cheating? No, he would play honestly here... and slowly watch as they slipped. The boisterous man, especially, was absolutely dripping in guilt.

"I will place my bets on Orange Skitty," he states with cool confidence. If he was to keep up appearances, he needed to be himself. He could feel some not being trusting of him, but that soon would change.

With the bets placed, the game master spins the wheel. The ball soon drops, and the table watches with excitement as the wheel rolls and rolls. Lyle sipped at his champagne, knowing that this would be the first of many spins. Spinning around and around, until the ball stops in a slot. Green Skitty.

"Looks like I was close, but a color off," he gives off a small chuckle. The people sitting next to him, a young lad and a dashing lady, both reassure him.

"Now now dears, we'll do better next time," he tells the both of them with a wink.

Meanwhile, he watched as a medium-aged businessman collects his winnings, the only one to go in on the green Skitty. Most of the people followed the bold claims from before, and better on purple. The idea of a dawn stone, indeed, was well worth it. Yet, this place dealt in coins, not items.

"Let's go in with the Green Azurill this time, call it a hunch."

They say there’s a story behind every rule, and the Casino’s policies are no exception. Mercury’s daring bet certainly turns heads, but that also happens to include some of the casino staff, who quickly scramble to course-correct before the Sharpedos’ in the water start to smell blood; Goto’s Dawn Stone is only on the table for a moment before its snatched up by the dealer and replaced with a big pile of chips and coins.

Not that it makes the tailor any less displeased with his insubordinate Pokemon. The man wears a scowl most unbefitting of his dazzling dress as he watches a portion of his unwanted fortune be shoveled away, proverbially lining the pockets of an unassuming competitor. It seems the trickster has fallen victim to his own pupil, and if he wants his precious stone back, he’ll at least need to break even...

“Et tu, Mercurius?” he ruefully asks his Pokemon. Mercury glances up from his throne of gold, smirking willfully. While he’s no Pokemon whisperer, they've been companions long enough that he knows precisely the intent hiding behind those shimmering eyes.

“You’re going to have fun with or without me, is that right?”

Mercury nods, his fairy wings fluttering with glee as he grabs a coin and tosses it toward his Trainer. He snatches it out of the air, and unfurls his hand to inspect it. An image of the palace’s namesake takes up the face side, while the proxy value of the coin is embossed on the obverse: Two hundred; A completely arbitrary number, seeing as these chips are non-redeemable, and yet some trick of the mind makes it feel like a heavier coin to handle than the stack of fifties Clefairy keeps by his side.

Goto flips the coin across his fingers deftly, and glances sternly at the Fairy-type, reminding him to keep his guard up. That look is soon replaced by one of forfeit, however, as he pulls out a chair and finally sits down. His amber eyes lock with the unsettling man, and there’s an immediate, wordless understanding that the person Lyle’s betting against is no novice.

“I apologize for not introducing myself sooner—I’m Giuseppe Goto, but simply Goto will suffice,” he says, offering his spindly hand out to Lyle. The crimson tassel hanging from his ear swings like a pendulum as he tilts his head toward Clefairy, who happily fills the spaces on the legend with coins.

“And this is Mercury, my partner. It appears he wants to place 50 on Orange, and as for me...” the man delicately leans in to tap his coin against the table, “200 on Orange Makuhita.”

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Old 03-19-2022, 09:40 PM   #30
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But oh, my love, don't forget me, when I let the water take me...

Entrusting fate to preserve her vow of silence, Star takes a gamble on 31 Black. Indeed, the entire piece of white nigiri seems to have been drizzled with some kind of black liquid. Perhaps a bit concerning, at first, but the moment Star takes a bite, she is greeted by the delectable taste of squid ink, paired with the very flesh of the animal itself, fastened onto a bed of traditional sushi rice with a small strip of nori. This lovely piece of squid sushi with squid-ink sauce contains no nasty surprises. After all, no chef - even one mad enough to devise such a wheel - would go as far as to ruin such subtle, yet refined flavors.

Clair, meanwhile, lunges at 22 Black, hoping for a piscine treat... Ah, but what appears to be a perfectly grilled piece of fish served in nigiri-style turns out to actually be grilled mushroom, made to mimic the appearance of fish meat! It would be disappointing were it not for the deep umami and brush of high-quality teriyaki sauce, which should be flavorful enough to appease even the most picky of carnivores. Fortunately, the lack of meat is the only surprise this piece of sushi has to offer - meaning the ghost pepper is elsewhere.

"Do not forget to take the associated drink pairing with your piece of sushi, should you like it," Bedivere encourages. "Of course, if you would rather enjoy the drinks you've ordered and not leave your beverage choices to fate, I can happily take them, myself... Though I am generally not one to imbibe, I can drink like a fish when I choose to, ohohohoho~"

Bedivere reaches for 16 Black, a square-shaped piece prepared in oshizushi style - this tightly-compressed sushi bite contains layers of black rice, shiso leaves, and vinegar-cured mackerel. Strong flavors, but deeply appreciated by the sea-salt scented man, who is equally delighted to find that the pairing for his piece is a traditional sake. Based on his blissful expression, the ghost pepper is not in his piece, either.

"How fared you with your first bites?" Bedivere asks, looking at both Clair and Star in turn, attempting to read their expressions. "Would you like another spin of the wheel?"
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Old 03-24-2022, 11:38 AM   #31
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Lyle watched as the others placed their bets. Blue Wynaut, Purple Skitty, Purple Azurill, Orange, and then Orange Makuhita. The lack of green was interesting, to say the least. Yet, seems that was what made this all more fun, wasn't it?

"Goto... hmm, no. Not what I wish for... dripping with too much guilt to let loose. Besides, I have these two lovelies at my side who are more than willing to give in" he thought, before giving the man at his side a squeeze. he then gave the woman a gently pat on the head, and he could feel both of them get shocked but happy by it.

The dealer then began to spin the wheel and drop in the ball. He watched intently, feeling the power of the forbidden fruit well within him. Everything was down to luck, just as he liked it. If he manipulated things, then people wouldn't fall into depravity. He needed to replace suspicion with inhibitions. To let this party go wild.

The ball then dropped, and his hunch was right. Orange Skitty. There was a bet on Skitty in general, and Goto's Clefairy betting on Orange. The dealer deals out the winnings and a large pile of coins were soon at Lyle's lap. With a smirk, he flagged down a waiter.

"Two vintages, please. I believe half of this covers it?" he asks, his voice husky. The waiter nods, and takes the coins.

"Mmm, anyone wish for champagne? I say, this is more fun when we can let loose," he offers, laying back into his chair. A few of the patrons take him up on the offer, and soon the waiter returns with the cold bottles of vintage.

"Please pour a drink for the fine ladies, gentlemen, and people at this table who wish. Now, to mix things up, let's all drink when the wheel stops. Of course, how much depends on your luck. What do you all say?" he asks the table, leaning forward, crossing his hands, and resting his head on. A giant, mischievous smile crosses his face while he gives all a playful gaze.

"Right, my bet. Hmm, I'll play it safe and place my bet on Green," he states, placing some coins forwards.

"Time to begin the feast" he thinks, continuing his grin.

------

Star seemed relieved that she didn't land on the ghost pepper. She didn't know if she could handle the heat, considering the more mild palette of Kalosian cuisine. Still, the sushi she received was quite exquisite, and delicious. Squid Ink Inari... It had a refreshingly salty flavor, which contrasted her drink quite nicely. Though, she took Bedivere's suggestion and tried the recommended drink pairing as well.

Meanwhile, Clair eats her piece. The Meowstic's face twists a bit, realizing this wasn't meat at all! Mushrooms! Not icky, but disappointing. She knew her trainer had a fine taste for mushrooms, especially things such as morels and champignons. But, for her, she wanted real meat. The roll, at least, was delicious.

Star then signs to Clair, and the Meowstic nods.

"Lady Estelle quite enjoyed her roll. Mine was a bit... surprising, but delicious nonetheless. I think both of us will try again," the Meowstic responds as politely.

"Oh right, Mister Bedivere. How was your roll?" the Meowstic asks as she looks over the roulette wheel.

Star reaches towards 13 Black. Seemed like it would be interesting, grabbing the reverse of the number she had picked previously. Meanwhile, Clair went for 21 Red. Perhaps a different color would give her the meat she so desired.
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Old 03-27-2022, 12:26 AM   #32
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Orange Skitty. The duo had gotten close to making the winning call, but it seems fate wants to toy with them a bit more. Even so, the safety net Mercury placed down softens the fall of their wish-granting assets. They still have plenty of room left to wager, after all.

The stellar Pokemon scoops up his winnings, and immediately takes to the board to think through his next move. His trainer, on the other hand, is hardly interested in the game, even despite the precious item he stands to lose from it; no game as bereft of skill as this can captivate him, but what of the people who play it?

“I’ll call Swablu for 100, next,” Goto says detachedly. His hand slides a chip onto the cloudy Pokemon’s space, but his eyes are affixed to Lyle across the seat. Trusting his Pokemon to strategize around his thoughtless move, he devotes his energy toward studying everything about the mystery man: His fashion, mannerisms, build--even his name is scrutinized down to the last letter.

Lyle du Pont... “The island from the bridge”... very likely Kalosian, and given both the venue and the attention he’s effortlessly garnered, likely a celebrity of some sort.

Yet, something doesn’t add up about that; even if he’s been out of the fashion scene for some time now, he’d been in Kalos for several years before his wanderings took him elsewhere. A name and image like that likely would’ve crossed his notice during his daily life, and yet this is the first he’s seen or heard of the man who seems to enthrall the entire Casino.

Of course, there’s always the possibility that his homeland lies elsewhere, perhaps even in this region, where much is obscure to the outside. Strange, then, that his name doesn’t appear anywhere within the complex weave of tales he’s delved into for his Fizzytopia research, either...

In the midst of this puzzle, Goto tips his glass toward the passing waitress, smiling charmingly, “if you’d be so kind. I would love a taste of your finest~”

As bubbly pours from the bottle, so too do the memories of this sound--this aroma of lightly spiced, freshly-baked bread--pour forth into his mind. No matter the exotic luxury he had been treated to, the atmosphere could never truly mask the cruel indifference that lay behind every formality and witty remark that was shared over this drink. The money game he indulged in back then was the complete opposite of roulette: One had to leverage every skill and edge at their disposal in order to survive.

The tailor churns the glass slowly beneath his nose, refraining from sampling it until the wheel comes to a rest. This scent... he knows well how it sticks to the breath and body, lingering even through the sleepless nights that followed his hard-earned victories... but now isn’t the time to dwell on such things.

Goto’s eyes follow his drink toward the table, where he sees Clefairy placing down his chips for the next spin. He grins slightly and rests his hands atop his crossed legs, “100 on Blue for my partner, it seems.”

“By the by-” he adds with an intrigued flutter in his voice, and directs his gaze toward the couple that was still mulling over their decision, “might I add that you both look absolutely dazzling tonight? I can only imagine the battle it must’ve taken to be able to partake in the festivities as guests, rather than as journalists.”

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Old 03-27-2022, 08:27 PM   #33
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Orange Skitty! This was exactly what Lyle had bet on, and there was a decent payout for the charming fellow. Diana and Marv gave small sighs of mild disappointment, but none too great- this, after all, was a game of chance, and that was how things went, was it not? Win some, lose some.

Steakknife, however, was not entirely convinced. The Gallade, while maintaining an overall casual demeanor, nevertheless couldn't help but regard Lyle with no small amount of suspicion. While reading emotions was more what the Ralts, Kirlia, and Gardevoir portions of his evolution line was known for, Gallade were still Psychic Pokémon, and Steakknife was convinced not all was on the up and up here. And likewise, while the pair of Bug-types were by no means as adept at reading people as your average Psychic-type, Bright and Sweet knew better by now than to doubt Steakknife's judgement, so if the Gallade saw reason to be suspicious, so too did the Volbeat and Illumise. The pair of bioluminescent-backsided Bug-types fluttered close to their respective Trainers, staying keenly aware of the goings-on around them.

Said keen awareness, however, being threatened by the arrival of booze. Lyle ordered some champagne to the table, inviting for anyone present who wanted in to have some. "None for me, thank you," Marv said politely. "Never been one to drink, myself."

"Mmm, I could go for just one glass," Diana decided. She noticed out of the corner of her eye that Steakknife had turned to look at her. She met the gaze of her boyfriend's Gallade unflinchingly and knowingly- she knew what she was doing here, and judging by the small nod Steakknife gave after a few seconds, the Gallade was willing to concede as much.

The time had come to bet again, and Lyle seemed to be playing it safe this time, putting his coins on the color green just in general. "Playing it safe might not be a bad call," Marv stated, as he put a small stack of coins on Azurill as a whole.

"I'll agree with that," Diana nodded, making a bet on purple as a color.

Lavender said nothing, beyond a further disappointed hiss at her latest wager not winning. Shaking her head in silent refusal of the offer of champagne, she continued to keep her creepy, unblinking stare fixed on Lyle as she placed a singular coin on Green Wynaut.

Before the wheel could be spun or the champagne poured, however, Goto caught the attention of the journalist couple, complimenting their outfits. "Why, thank you," Diana smiled graciously.

"Yes," added Marv. "Though your outfit's no slouch, either," he added. "Certainly fits the overall theme of the celebration."

At what Goto said next, Diana gave a small nod. "It was quite tempting to come here on the job," she conceded. "But from experience, sometimes events like these are all the better when one can be away from the watchful eyes of a TV camera. Feelings before ratings- that's our motto at Channel 110," she said firmly. "Goto, you said to call you, yes? A pleasure to meet you."

"Likewise," Marv added. "And these are my partners- Bright, my Volbeat, and Steakknife, my Gallade."

"And this darling beside me is Sweet, my Illumise," said Diana.

"Bebeat!" Bright greeted Goto with a friendly wave.

"Miiseee!" chimed in Sweet. Steakknife said nothing, but turned to Goto and gave a courteous bow.

"I gotta say, Goto, you and that Clefairy, you look familiar somewhat," added Marv. "By any chance, were you among the Trainers who showed up to tackle that Gigantamax Orbeetle?" he asked.

Meanwhile, Keith and Willa had enjoyed a small snack and some of the more tamer beverages this establishment had to offer- much like their friend Marv, the Masterses weren't much for drinking. Still, they could not deny they were enjoying themselves, though by no means did they intend to just stay apart from the rest of the party for the rest of the night, and so they had begun to walk back over to where people were seated. They saw the small crowd gathered around playing roulette, and considered joining in for a while, maybe make sure Lavender wasn't frightening or maiming anyone, when the charming laugh of the man Star was talking to met their ears, and upon hearing it, Keith froze where he stood, eyes widening as the sheer, unbridled nostalgia hit him with all the quiet subtlety of a swift kick in the Sludge Bombs.

"Keith?" Willa inquired, for she could not fail to notice that something about that laugh had caught her husband's attention. "Is everything all right?"

"I... just, that laugh," Keith replied, glancing around. "Willa, have you seen, like, a Jellicent around here at all?" he asked. "A male one?"

"I can't say that I have, no," Willa stated, glancing around herself, and seeing no sign of such a Pokémon. "Why do you ask?"

"Because I have heard that laugh before," Keith stated. "It almost sounded like it came from that guy Star's talking to, but surely not..."

Willa looked at Keith. "Perhaps we should wait for an opportunity and then introduce ourselves," she suggested. "I can tell you're curious, but surely we shouldn't just go in and interrupt their conversation."

"No, you're right," Keith agreed. "No sense in just barging in like that." And so the couple took a seat at a neighboring table. As a waiter passed, Keith found himself ordering their best steak dinner for himself and Willa, for indeed, so nostalgic was that laugh that Keith found himself craving good food just from hearing it.
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Old 03-27-2022, 09:49 PM   #34
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Si viene el Agua y me Moja / Y es que Tu Amor me Duele...

Bedivere seems quite pleased that both ladies enjoyed their first tastes, and that they were both willing to give the culinary roulette wheel another spin. Star even reaches for the pairing meant for her Squid Ink sushi - a small glass of verdicchio with a bright, slightly acidic peach-lemon flavor.

"Ah, full glad am I to hear that you were both satisfied with your choices!" Bedivere chuckles. "I, too, very much enjoyed my first bite - mackerel is a bit of an acquired taste, or so I'm told, but one I'm quite fond of. I do hope your next rolls are just as delightful - if not moreso!"

Though the maki roll placed on 13 Black looks beautiful with its drizzle of dark sauce and deep, black rice, as Star bites down, she realizes that she doesn't recognize the meat inside, whatever it is. Something about it tastes... vaguely like pork? The sauce is rich, meaty and thickened with cooked blood - but it's near impossible to tell what animal it came from. There is no nasty ghost pepper surprise in this one, at least... This bit of mystery meat sushi is paired with Death in the Afternoon, a cocktail blending high-quality champagne with absinthe. It's delicious, of course - as all of the offerings have been - but perhaps it could do with some explanation from the chef.

Clair's pick, 21 Red, is a rather simple offering in comparison to other rolls - the classic tuna nigiri. Of course, this particular roll is made with high-quality otoro, making it a particularly refined and delectable treat... and with no unwelcome spicy surprises! This sushi is paired with a crisp-tasting koshu wine.

Finally, Bedivere tries his luck on 30 Red. What appears to be salmon roe turns out to be a sweet surprise, as Bedivere learns that the fish eggs are actually strawberry-orange boba atop a bed of sweet rice and wrapped with a thin slice of mango tinged with a bit of dark green dye to serve as the "seaweed". This is paired with a glass that appears to be red wine at a glance, but is simply grape juice. Despite the bit of trickery, Bedivere seems pleased by it nonetheless - and again, the only surprise is the sweetness.

It is around this time that Sir Bedivere catches sight of a familiar man out of the corner of his eye - Bedivere had to admire how sharply dressed Sir Keith had come to this occasion, and made a mental note to tell him so. Upon realizing he did not arrive alone, a brief look of what could only be described as desperate hope flashes in his eyes as he turns his gaze toward the man's dining companion, only for those hopes to be dashed like a doomed ship against the rocks. Even so, he searches the woman's face for a few moments longer than he should - looking for something, anything that resembles the person he hopes her to be - but eventually, he must resign himself to the truth... and he forces a smile.

Turning away from the table, he takes a deep breath. "My sincere apologies to you both, I... I thought I saw a couple I once knew," he remarks, his voice shaky. "I was only half right..."
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Old 04-03-2022, 02:39 PM   #35
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“Ah. That’s correct,” Goto softly affirms as he slants against his chair. The lights in his eyes shimmer briefly in recognition, flitting quickly between the two couples he had met on the floor so far. Keith and Willa... he’d seen them during the raid, and having learned that the Masterses are friends with this pair--it all falls into place, just like a ball settling into its fated pocket.

“It’s safe to assume both of you were there on behalf of Channel 110 to cover the incident, then? I can’t imagine there were many volunteers for such a dangerous scoop,” he remarks. On the surface, the tailor appears amused by this coincidence by the way he covers his mouth and stifles a chuckle, but what he’s really hiding is a sting to his pride.

If these two recognize him, then they must have gotten some shots of his involvement in the battle. In that case, this might present a problem, but neither of them seem like glory-hound reporters; if anything, there’s a strong likelihood that the betrothed couple went to Saccharine Sweets Gym in order to back up their friends in case something went awry. As long as no-one looks too closely at the footage, he should be safe.

“Really, I’m surprised you even noticed us. Truly, we were more observers than combatants,” Goto says. Slender fingers tap on the table, snagging Mercury’s attention away from the game. The two exchange a knowing, almost awkward glance as they recall the... peculiar course of that fight.

He shakes his head wryly, and gazes out upon the labyrinthine casino floor, “the others put in a far more impressive effort driving back that monster. I’m just a humble tailor who was struggling to mend their wounds.”

“Even so, I don’t regret going. I hadn’t imagined that such powerful and striking beings could come from worlds beyond our own, but now that I’ve seen it for myself... well, extraordinary experiences make for quite the muse, and so does the extraterrestrial,” the man laughs dryly.

His attention turns from the sushi roulette at the other table, and back to the real deal before him. Amber eyes lock onto Lyle once more, and his lips curl in renewed interest, “so, Mr. du Pont. Forgive me for prying, but seeing as we’re talking careers, I’m interested in knowing what you do for a living. You clearly seem to know your way around a gala like this, after all.”

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Old 04-24-2022, 02:42 PM   #36
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I've been crying with the wolves // To get to you, To get to you, Ooh to get to you

Star was taken aback by the complex taste of the piece on her tongue. While pork-ish, it was something she had never truly experienced before. While a bit concerning, she couldn't help but acknowledge it was delicious. Would it be something she'd ever search out on her own? Oh heavens know. But, variety was the spice of life, especially with the cocktail paired with this.

Clair, on the other hand, ravenously wolfed down her sushi. MEAT! Oh, sweet delicious meat. The feline was more than happy to consume the delicious piece of fish before her. The silky, fatty texture was more than suited to her tastebuds, the otoro being one of the most lucrative, and acquired tastes of sushi. Only uni truly could rival it in terms of an acquired taste.

The woman then patiently watched as her companion seemed taken aback by some people she recognized. Looking to match where his gaze was, she noticed Keith and Willa once more. With the amount of food here, more mouths would be more than appreciated. She waved them over, and Clair soon spoke.

"Ah, Sir Bedivere, if you don't mind, these are friends of Lady Estelle's. If they could sit with us, and partake in our rather devilish food challenge, would that be alright?" the Meowstic asked as she reached for 17 Black.

Her master, however, had a strange curiosity, and reached towards Green 0

---

Lyle listened with interest as his guests chattered amongst themselves. He was surprised no one noticed the discrepancy between his actual bet and his winnings. Hmm, that, was good. Seems that his mere presence was letting people look the other way. Now, this time, he knew he needed to play it cool.

He watched as the roulette wheel stopped before responding, taking a sip of his drink as the ball finally landed. Most of the table followed suit, feeling that this loosened up the stakes of the game. Orange Wynaut. Well, that was disappointing, but it matters not. Not even a "safe" bet was guaranteed to win. Still, he watched the dealer dole out the winnings.

Letting the dry champagne trickle down his mouth, he gave Goto a smug glare before speaking. It matters not what he says, for it was technically true. For, why lie about what he was? Sometimes, the truth from a devil was the greatest lie of all.

"Philanthropist. Take those with potential, invest with them, and watch them soar," he responds with a smile. Makes it all the sweeter when they crash and burn. Giving in to their inhibitions, and letting all they worked for waste away.

"I do prefer to remain anonymous. I'm sure you're well aware that often being in the public eye can... have unsavory results?" he continues, talking to the man. "But, that's all that's interesting about me. Got plenty of money, plenty of charm, and plenty of time. Live lavishly, burn quickly. Now, I think I'll go Purple. I do, in fact, quite love that color."

He then felt a twitch creep up his arm.

Ah, is the brat going to look for me soon? Well, silly boy, daddy is busy. And somewhere you can't get to... With the body I gave you. I am a bit disappointed you aren't happy being back in a pseudonym of your living flesh. But still, release your anger and rage. That'll make your little boy toy all the more excited. Burndown that place of sin, so it can be rebuilt into something grander... and much more depraved.

He smirked at the thought, feeling what his little contractee was doing now.
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Old 04-25-2022, 07:34 PM   #37
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Y si el Fuego me Quema / Y es que Tu Amor me Duele...

Bedivere nods politely in response to Clair's request, reining his emotions in with spectacular self-control. He stands and motions eagerly for Keith and Willa to join their table, grinning all the while. "As friends of the Lady Estelle, I welcome you both to join us in our feast. Please sit down and make yourselves comfortable!" Bedivere makes a motion to a pair of empty seats at the table as he says this. "Most of these pieces of sushi are paired with an alcoholic beverage, so if you prefer not to imbibe, simply let me know and I shall request that the waiter provide non-alcoholic alternatives for your enjoyment. I must first inform you, however... this is a roulette in more than just appearance. One of these pieces of sushi is haunted by the presence of a secret ghost pepper... We do not know which one, and the dastardly piece has yet to be discovered! Consider yourselves sufficiently warned, ohohohohoho~"

While Bedivere ushers in the Masters couple, Clair decides to try 17 Black, which appears at first to be some sort of paste in a gunkan-style roll with a slice of cucumber on top. The psychic cat's discerning palate is likely to identify the substance as kani miso; named for its resemblance to miso paste, kani miso is the rich and deeply flavorful innards of a crab. Savory and similar to a pate or foie gras, this delectable treat appeals only to the true seafood aficionados - and this particular roll is only the highest quality, of course. No spicy surprises here. This roll is paired with a lovely glass of sauvignon blanc.

Star makes the rather bold choice of 0 Green. The verdant roll is stuffed with ripe avocado, with a thinly-sliced ribbon of cucumber holding the roll together. The moment Star bites down, her senses are greeted by the momentary burn and bright, pungent flavor of real, freshly grated wasabi. Unlike its fake counterpart, served at lesser restaurants, the wasabi mixed within the avocado does not have the lingering, acrid burn of green-dyed horseradish. Instead, it is a moment of tolerable heat that melts into a more subtle, yet satisfying flavor, which mixes well with the buttery avocado and refreshing cucumber. Truly, the mark of a high-class establishment. The roll is paired with a shot of expensive single malt whiskey from Kanto.

While the ladies at the table enjoy their sushi, Bedivere graciously abstains, allowing the Masterses to take the next pieces. Leith, meanwhile, casts a curious gaze at Keith. She sensed the man had a bit of the River Virga running through him - a touch of death - in a way that reminded her of her trainer. Her gaze is not malicious, no - simply contemplative. She takes a few moments to consider this strange gut feeling she has about him and his eerie aura, before silently motioning for a waiter to refill her empty plate of fruit. If he was indeed of the Virga in some way, she was sure she would find out in due time.


---


Flying through the main entrance at breakneck speed, only to stop on a dime in a dramatic, flamenco pose, Rebecca the Oricorio-B knew that first impressions were everything, especially at an event such as this. With a flourish, sparks fly around her, as her shimmering onyx eyes flit about the lobby, analyzing her environment carefully. She gracefully reaches for an invitation tucked in the folds of her left wing upon noticing a pair of Indeedee in dapper attire, marked to indicate their employment at the Casino. The male of the pair takes the invitation, reviewing it carefully. Telepathically, the question is communicated with a tilt of the head and a quick psychic impression - would the lady's trainer be joining her this evening?

Eh, I doubt it, Becky responds in a lilting, sing-song tone. She's not exactly keen on public appearances -

We understand, the female Indeedee responds, the male nodding in concurrence. Is there any way we might be of assistance before you join the others at tonight's Gala?

There is, in fact... Becky grins. You know I can never show up at a party without getting right and truly in the mood, and a couple of friends have been joining me in... warming up for the festivities, let's say. Becky leans in, as if sharing a juicy secret with the two Indeedee. One of 'em partied a bit too hard tonight already, if you catch my meaning - she intones carefully, before returning to her original pose.

Of course, Miss. We will prepare a room for your friend right away.

And the other... He'll be calling himself Oroitz. Gentleman in a black suit with red eyes. Just point him my way, and give him no hassle, if you would.

That should be no trouble at all, Miss, the Male responds. He is on the list, after all.

Becky's eyes widen slightly. Is he, now? The bird scoffs. Hmph. Here I was thinking I was doing him a favor... Ah, well. Not that I owed him one, anyway.

With a deep curtsy to the two Pokémon attendants to physically indicate her gratitude, she flounces off, making her grand entrance at the Gala in search of conversational partners and free glasses of wine...

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Old 04-25-2022, 09:16 PM   #38
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Keith and Willa were not kept waiting for very long, with Star seeing them and waving them over. The couple took this as their cue, and were welcomed in no uncertain terms by the... well, to Willa, he would be a mysterious stranger, but to Keith, an old friend, for the more the man spoke, the more Keith was certain that this was the source of the laugh he'd heard earlier, and the laugh he'd heard in years long past. The unflagging politeness, the warm, welcoming hospitality. Over the top and yet sincere and genuine at the same time. Not to mention, the voice was a dead-on match to what Keith remembered, and as if there was any remaining doubt to even be dealt with at this point, another instance of the famed laugh.

"Hello, Star," Willa greeted her friend. "Lovely to see you again."

"Yes, good to see you again," Keith agreed. "I see your Espurr's evolved, too, congratulations," he added, with a small, respectful nod in the Meowstic's direction.

"And thank you very much for this gracious welcome," Willa added, now turning to Bedivere. "I must say, I'm very interested by this little roulette," she added. "I wouldn't mind giving this a try, though if it wouldn't be too much trouble, I personally would rather abstain from the alcohol," she added.

"The same goes for me," Keith concurred, eyeing the roulette wheel. "But yes, I'm looking forward to giving this a try. Very thematically fitting, and I like the little element of danger to all this," he said with a small smile, reaching for 3 Red, while Willa opted to go for 29 Black. "Ah, but first, I think introductions are in order," he added. "This is my lovely wife, Willa," he began, putting an arm around Willa. "Willa, if I'm not mistaken, this is an old friend of mine," Keith continued, regarding Bedivere with a kind smile. "It's good to see you again, Bedivere."

Meowth and Meowstic, meanwhile, hung back somewhat for the moment. Meowstic looked over to see a look of stunned surprise on Meowth's face. "Is there a problem?" Meowstic asked quietly.

"I mean... I don't tink so, just..." Meowth murmured back. "...da Bedivere dat we knew was a Jellicent. Dis... ain't dat," he finished lamely. "Sounds just like da guy, though, right down ta da laugh. Meowstic, lemme tell youse, if you'd'a been around back den, dat laugh woulda been downright nostalgic ta hear. Hah, if dis is really da guy, we gotta tell Myrtle about dis when we get home," he purred. "She had a crush on him big-time back in da day."

"Really?" Meowstic replied with interest. "Should we say hello to him ourselves?" she added. "Is he nice?"

"Is he ni-!" Meowth repeated, valiantly resisting the urge to explode with laughter. "...I don't tink a simple 'yes' quite covers it," he managed to say moments later. "You'll see." With that, Meowth nimbly climbed up onto Keith's shoulder, while Meowstic seated herself in Willa's lap. The feline couple reached for the roulette wheel themselves, with Meowth taking 1 Red, and Meowstic settling on 11 Black.

~~~~~

Diana and Marv nodded, confirming they were in fact there on behalf of Channel 110 to cover the Orbeetle incident. "We've been to more dangerous before," said Marv. "I don't know whether you've seen the footage of the Primal Dialga incident, but that was our doing, back when we were on Channel 890."

"The news helicopter we had at our disposal at the time was pulled into the other dimension along with numerous Pokémon Trainers," said Diana. "Marv and I, well, we hardly qualified as Trainers back then. All we had to our names were Sweet and Bright here, and the both of them were more suited towards assisting with our work than with battling, though I must say, they've picked up quite the aptitude for the latter since then," she added, smiling at her Illumise, who smiled back.

"Illumi!" smiled Sweet.

"Bebeat!" Bright chimed in.

"Heh," smiled Marv, pulling his Volbeat into a quick one-armed hug. "But yes, to answer your question, those sorts of raid battles, well, they ended up basically our specialty ever since we happened upon the Gigantamaxed Snorlax threatening Springtide Isle. That's what really got our careers off the ground."

"I even took part in one myself, months ago- the Elgyem on Saccharine Island," stated Diana. "It was tricky to balance giving live news coverage and also commanding a Skwovet in battle, but considering we won, I like to think we managed it well. Pecha even evolved into a Greedent after all was said and done. I would bring her out here, but, ah... I somehow don't think she would make the best first impression in a place like this," she said delicately, mind awash with vivid images of a gluttonous Greedent trying to eat all the food in sight. "I actually left Pecha home tonight, I asked a friend to watch her," she stated. "Which reminds me, Marv," she added. "Did you leave your latest Pokémon home as well?"

"Actually, I got it right here," Marv stated, with a Poké Ball in hand. "Dunno if I'll bring Legday out just yet, but I haven't ruled it out yet," he said fairly.

Goto, however, was not all that convinced that his efforts made that big a difference in the long run, to which Diana shook her head. "I beg to differ," she said. "Every little bit helps in these raid battles. Even if you were more useful on the supporting side of things, the value of such support cannot be overstated."

Once Goto had turned his attention to the mysterious Lyle, Diana took a sip of her drink. It wasn't hitting her especially hard, but then, she didn't plan for it to in the first place, especially if her boyfriend's Gallade was being so wary here.

Speaking of, said Gallade was still eyeing Lyle warily. He was certainly doing a good job of appearing disarming and charming... entirely too good of a job if you asked Steakknife. Could nobody else present sense that something didn't feel right about the guy? Well... OK, maybe one other among them could, he conceded to himself, for indeed, Lavender was still hovering before Lyle. Not so close as to be considered an invasion upon his personal space, but not so far back as to make it ambiguous who her focus was upon. Those who might have been paying attention would have noticed that not once had Lavender turned those pitch-black bottomless voids on her face away from Lyle, but also not once had she blinked. Small, creepy smile still in place, regarding the mysterious man with a sort of fascination he wasn't likely expecting. Almost as though he was being sized up, as though there was a debate raging in her inscrutable mind as to whether he would go better as an appetizer or a side dish. She did, after all, aspire to someday eat Giratina... But for right now, the creepy Jigglypuff's wager, now done by way of using Psychic to levitate a small stack of coins onto Green Makuhita, was all anyone was getting out of her at the moment. Diana, meanwhile, put a few coins on Makuhita as a species, while Marv, opting to play it a little safer, wagered just a couple of coins on orange overall.


*As a result of reaching 30 Bond, Sweet learned Defensive Shield!*

*As a result of reaching 30 Bond, Sweet learned Shadow Mist!*

*As a result of reaching 30 Bond, Sweet learned the MT move Coaching!*

*As a result of reaching 30 Bond, Bright learned Defensive Shield!*

*As a result of reaching 30 Bond, Bright learned Steel Beam!*

*As a result of reaching 30 Bond, Bright learned the MT Move Terrain Pulse!*
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Old 05-22-2022, 12:50 PM   #39
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Need someone to numb the pain

Star flashes the Masters Couple a smile, nodding that it was a pleasure to see them again as well. She then watched as the duo interacted with Bedivere, and she couldn't help but notice something was... off. Well, this is not a place to pry; she had sushi she had to eat.

The Kalosian woman was pleasantly surprised by the piece she had received. It was a vegetarian roll, and she felt the taste of fresh wasabi, avocado, and cucumber mingle together to create a cool heat. It was quite an enjoyable, and refreshing, experience, especially after the rich porkiness of the last piece she had eaten. After all, meals were all meant to be balanced.

Clair, meanwhile, was wary of the cats that came. How was she supposed to stand out now, compared to another Meowstic? Yet, she was supposed to be a proper lady, so she wasn't going to cause drama. She ate her own piece and meowed in absolute delight at the taste of the kani miso. She'd have preferred the cucumber not be there, weird snake vegetable thing, but the smooth crab paste was more than enough for her to be ecstatic at it. Well worth dealing with that green plant snake.

Star watches as the Masters couple and their own cats then reach out towards four of the spots on the wheel. Well, this was certainly beginning to become a more dangerous game. The fewer pieces on the board, the more likely they would hit whammy. She, for one, did not know if she could handle that amount of heat. The had already abstained from the shot of whisky with her roll, not wishing for too much warmth.

She then reaches out towards 18 Red, and Clair, after realizing the first few spots already had some pieces taken, takes 36 Red. The duo, for now, abstains from making conversation besides greetings. It was, after all, impolite to talk over someone who was being addressed.
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Old 05-30-2022, 03:52 PM   #40
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You've gotten into my bloodstream. I can feel you floating in me...

Bedivere nods respectfully at both Keith and Willa's requests to abstain from alcohol, relaying said instructions to the waiters as they arrive to replenish Leith's plate of fresh fruit. Leith, in the meantime, has noticed that all the other Pokémon around her are cats... This realization causes her to reflexively reach up and mold little cat ears out of the shadowy sand atop her head, before attending to her second helping of food. She wasn't really able to comprehend why she felt the need to do it, but it was done before she could really contemplate her actions. Bedivere chuckles softly upon noticing his Pokémon's apparent attempt at matching the others, before turning back to address his fellow diners, his eyes flickering strangely at Keith's greeting.

"A pleasure to meet you both," Bedivere politely responds, standing to offer a courteous bow to each member of the Masters couple, pausing a moment in front of the gentleman. "My most sincere apologies for contradicting you, Keith, but while you seem to know my name... I do believe that this is the first time we have met."

Looking around the room, he silently studies the reactions of the others seated before continuing, sitting down himself. "Mm, perhaps I should elaborate... Keith, Willa, it is my understanding, based on the news I've received from Fizzytopia, that you both were involved with that dreadful Primal Dialga incident, as well as its after-effects, were you not? If the papers and reports are true, then the couple sitting before me was displaced from another timeline in approximately the year 2030, into this timeline in the year 2020. The last time I spoke with the Keith I knew was before that year, and whatever Bedivere you knew remains in your original timeline, though I imagine he and I were similar enough, ohohohoho~! So, really, even if the Bedivere you knew was not exactly me, and you are not the exactly the Keith I knew... We may as well pick up where our lost friends left off. Is that agreeable?"

As Bedivere speaks, the others at the table take their choice of sushi, with the waiters providing drink replacements as appropriate. Keith opts for 3 Red, a roll which appears to be covered in a baked scallop and spicy mayo mixture, with a drizzle of eel sauce and a sprinkle of scallions. This mixture covers a classic California roll, made with real, high-quality crab. This is paired with iced mint lemonade, to cut the richness of the baked roll. Willa's 29 Black is a gorgeous piece of yin-yang maki, with the yin and yang separated by a piece of seaweed running through the roll to create the signature shape. White rice on one side of the maki holds a piece of avocado, while the black rice side holds a piece of yellowtail. This lovely piece of sushi is paired with a small glass of ice-cold ginger ale.

Meowth, meanwhile, tries his luck on 1 Red, which ends up being a simple, yet delectable nigiri made with striped jack, a clean, sweet fish with a mild flavor. This lovely fish is paired with a light, sparkling melonade. His partner, meanwhile, chooses 11 Black, which turns out to be a popular snack in Alola... Spam Musubi. The salty, fried spam brushed with light teriyaki tastes homemade - of course an establishment like this would never make their spam musubi with spam out of a can! Some sweet guava nectar is paired with this dish.

As for the hostess of the soiree, 18 Red reveals itself to be a gunkan roll of sujiko: salmon roe still in the sac. A fragile, brined delicacy not commonly seen in a typical sushi restaurant, but this roulette wheel was, as advertised, full of surprises... This piece is paired with a small glass of Muscadet. Meanwhile, Clair's 36 Red is sure to grab Keith's attention, as it is wrapped in bacon! Smoked salmon, flying fish roe and scallion sit inside the meaty wrappings... Smoky and savory. To further enhance the smoky taste, this roll is paired with a light pour of Ardbeg single malt whiskey.

Bedivere carefully looks around the table and, noting that the spicy surprise has not yet been uncovered, he tries his luck with 26 Black. It doesn't take him long to realize what he's consuming - with a strong vinegar sauce to counteract the mostly flavorless meat. He takes a contemplative sip of the Cava provided with the piece, grinning all the while. "Jellyfish, hm... Rather an interesting choice to serve me. Ah, but I did say I would eat anything, did I not? They certainly took me at my word, Ohohohoho~" Bedivere grins, a shimmer of dark mischief in his eye. "Full glad am I that they did. Quite delicious, I'd say."

The pieces are dwindling, and the ghost pepper surprise is still on the table. It's only a matter of time...
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Old 06-03-2022, 12:38 PM   #41
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It takes everything in Goto’s power to hold back his laughter as Lyle explains his place here at the gala. The contradiction of an anonymous benefactor surrounded by such enthralled men and women is so very plain to see, it simply must be a joke. What next, would the man of the hour claim that he’s just so naturally charming if Goto were to press him on his apparent surge in recognition?

“I see. How magnanimous of you,” he replies, smothering his utter incredulity with another sip of champagne. The man leans hunches forward in his chair, appearing to scrutinize the roulette wheel before him.

In truth, he’s already lost all interest in betting for the next round. Unlike his star-shaped friend, Goto knows his limits—here in the devil’s house, he can’t believe in strokes of fate. Best to save his chips and make the process of buying back his Dawn Stone a little less painful.

Despite his disenchantment with the wheel, there’s still one more gamble to consider. The more he observes Mr. du Pont, the more he recognizes the familiar sense of a calculated performance behind his hedonistic smile. Perhaps his initial suspicions were a product of the... complicated feelings being back in high society evoked, but the man’s answer has dangled a proverbial thread before him:

The ‘charitable investor’, of course that’s what they all say... Not an uncommon component of the corporate underworld, really. Big promises of turning around the lives of the inexperienced and desperate, when in truth, the board is carefully arranged so as to merely be a matter of time before the only person walking away with fortune—or even their life—is the one who set-up the pieces.

A part of him wants to reach out and unravel the truth, as far as it will go—a part of him that only grows stronger as his inhibitions get weaker. Perhaps this is some sort of urge to make right on his own wrongs, or maybe he wishes to keep others from experiencing what he had to.

Downing his drink, Goto sighs, relaxing himself before he ruins his pretty face with a permanent scowl. Supposing he is correct, it would be a bet far more risky than anything he could place down on this table. He glances at those around him; Diana and Marv, the two seem like a genuinely lovely couple. It would be a shame to see a knife to their throats as a consequence of his speaking tactlessly.

The tailor rises from his seat, and begins collecting his unspent chips. Mercury glances over his shoulder just as he’s about to place his next bet, and rather than disappointment, the Clefairy regards his Trainer with a look of concern. Helping his Trainer pack everything away into a bag, the Fairy-type gives Lyle an almost unsatisfied look before retreating into his ball for the evening.

“It’s been a pleasure, but I’ve been pining for some fresh air,” Goto says, trying his best to hide the weariness in his voice. He bows first to Lyle, and then to the pair of reporters sitting off to the side, offering his hand to each of them, “Mrs. Macks, Mr. Liss. I look forward to meeting you again soon. I have immense respect for your work, and I'd love to hear more about it.”

Tucking his arms into his sleeves, Goto strides off into the labyrinthine expanse of the slots section, and with it, he tries to leave his muddled thoughts behind at the table. Not that he could even think, standing here amidst the din of the rigged wheels whirling, and glittering tokens of avarice pouring forth from the cogs of this well-oiled machine.

---

After a bit of aimless wandering, Goto finally makes his way up to the balcony overlooking the Racetracks. Tightening his kimono against the chilly night, he leans against the ornate railing, and lights up a cigarette to take some of the edge off after his gambling spree of indeterminate length.

Between puffs, the tailor peers down at the abandoned tracks below, and the row of empty stands that surround them at every angle. A remnant of this place in its heyday, now reduced to little else but a playground for Trainers. Not really the kind of place to attract any interest, tonight.

Perhaps, right now, that’s what he needs...

Last edited by ShadowDRGN; 06-03-2022 at 05:06 PM.
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Old 06-03-2022, 06:04 PM   #42
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Litwick Promise I'll Be Kind // Like Feeding Flames To The Fire



"Farewell," he curtly stated as the brazenly dressed man stated he would be leaving the table.

That's what they all say. The words hung in his mind as he saw Goto disappear from view, but no matter. He knew that this dish was not the one we wished for, nay, the mark he wished for was soon approaching. The stage was soon to be set, for a most delightful feast.

He then turned his head towards the Gallade who had been eyeing him the entire time. 'Steaknife.' What a droll name. Still, the Pokemon, besides the little... imp who was trying to berate him, was now the only one unnerved by him. For what purpose? He was here for entertainment like any creature so desperately needs. What is the purpose of life? If not partake in merriment and feast on depravity.

He then picked up the Jigglypuff without looking at it, unfazed by its screeching, and gently set it down next to him on the table.

"Apologies, you are obstructing my view of the board. That, well, can be seen as cheating. I'm sure even one of your kind was taught manners?" he asked of it, not making eye contact, causing a small round of laughter from the table. Not even worth more than that for one such below his rank.

He then stared the Gallade straight into the eye. Peer into him, he would find nothing that he is wishing for in him. Not some grand unmasking of a liar, for not a single lie, has been told. They try to play the detective, only to uncover nothing. If he had wished to give them hell, he would. But this was a one-sided game of cat and mouse

"Mister Liss," he turned to the Pokemon's trainer. "I would like to request you ask your Gallade to stop staring at me, please. I do understand if the Pokemon may be wary of me, but this is a party. I am sure all of us are here to relax and enjoy merriment?" He politely asked. In truth, this didn't bother him, but any lesser man would be.

With that done, he went back to planning his next move on the round of the game at hand. Yet, he had noticed a few more guests coming in... fashionably late. And of course, with his senses, he knew who one of them was before they had even entered the fold. Of course, this one wouldn't be allowed to.

He looked towards the entrance and saw his young contractee... and the bird man with him. Lyle looked at him and motioned him over with a quick flick of the wrist and snap before looking towards the Oricorio that had entered a while back.

"Waiter! May we get a round of wine for anyone here and any patrons who may wish to partake in roulette?" he flags down a waiter, making sure that his words were audible enough to reach her ears. "Preferably a nice, dark, and robust red."

---

With his clothing having suddenly changed before entering, William took a deep breath as he saw the gala hall. He felt like his entire body was about to be crushed, the same power he invoked that day looming before him. Without thinking, he went to go towards it, only to be stopped by the casino staff.

"Sir, this room is four those ages eighteen and plus, or of Pokemon whose trainers are," the female Indeedee speaks.

"But I am over eighteen..." he responds before being given a look of "sure kid." He hands over his invitation, and the two of them look confused.

"[i]Sorry Kid, but we can't let you in due to the age restrictions. You are free to enjoy the rest of the party... Perhaps the arcade. If you would like we can take our cap,"[i] the Male one speaks up.

As much as he'd huff, he knew better... Especially with the gaze that was piercing him. He looked further into the room but saw no one he personally knew. It was as if his eyes were clouded, but he could see Oroitz see something. Whatever it was, he knew it was from his influence.

"Damn it!" he exclaimed, before storming up the stairs off towards the racetracks. He wished Oroitz some fun and stumbled his way up the stairs.

Stupid human body. Stupid whisky finally kicking him. His breath smelled of it, so he was surprised that the Indeedee looked the other way. Perhaps it was due to his charm that he was allowed in. Great, his heart ached profusely and there was nothing he could do on the matter.

Rummaging through his pocket, he found a lighter within. That was new. He messed with it a little, a small flame being produced each time he did so. Perhaps he would go to the balcony of the racetracks and watch the flame dance in the wind.

As he did so, he noticed a... bizarrely dressed man gazing out gloomily. He reeked of his scent and the smell of cigarettes. Not really something he wanted himself, but well perhaps he could bum and get info for the inside before parking at an arcade machine.

"Hey, can I bum one off of ya?" William asked, the white-haired ghost boy holding up his own lighter. It very clearly had the words 'Du Pont" engraved in silver across its white body.
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Old 06-05-2022, 10:26 PM   #43
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With introductions done, Bedivere told the Masters couple that it was a pleasure to meet them both, wording that caught Keith off-guard, coming from an old friend, though that was nothing compared to when Bedivere then turned to Keith, and, apologizing for the impending contradiction, stated that this was the first time they had met. Willa raised an eyebrow as she turned to her husband, who looked genuinely bewildered. Meowth and Meowstic likewise had heard this, and were reacting not unlike their respective Trainers, with Meowstic looking to Meowth for answers, but Meowth being just as bewildered as she was.

Almost certainly the confusion was noticed by Bedivere, for he was quick to offer an explanation. Keith and Willa nodded to confirm what Bedivere knew already- that the Masterses had been involved in stopping the Primal Dialga incident, and that their involvement in said incident had resulted in certain big, big, major side effects. To his understanding, the Keith Masters he knew was displaced into a different timeline, from which the present timeline received the couple from ten years in the future, complete with daughter. In that sense, Bedivere was certain that, whatever the similarities were, the Keith Masters he knew and the Keith Masters sitting beside him were not one and the same.

"...Alright, I guess I see what you were getting at there, then," Keith nodded, breaking the silence. "I have to say, though, that's certainly not how any of us saw it," he added fairly.

"Indeed, our understanding is that we are still from the same timeline in which my husband knew you," Willa supplied. "Just..."

"...yanked back ten years and tossed into a different tangent," Keith nodded. "Thing is, said tangent would have been... well, after we met," he said to Bedivere. "So it'd still be the same me, just ten years older than I ought to be. I mean, in all honesty, I can't say which of us is right," he chuckled. "I might be no stranger to time travel, but this is but my best guess on the matter. What I do know is that this... well, it doesn't feel like we're out of place," he said.

"Setting aside the sudden age difference, anyway," Willa chimed in.

"But, ah, in the interest of stopping myself before I start rambling for too long," Keith added with a warm chuckle. "Whether we consider it reuniting after a long time, or picking up where our lost friends left off... whatever we want to call it, it's fine by me," he nodded.

Following this, they ate their sushi. Keith's had a bit of a spicy kick to it- nowhere near the hellfire-esque levels that remained a constant underlying threat. Willa's was quite beautifully crafted, and she took a moment to admire this before eating it. Meowth's piece was simple yet delicious, though the scent from Meowstic's piece reminded Meowth of when Keith and Willa went on vacation in Alola, years and years ago. Though this was before Meowstic's time, and thus, this had no chance of bringing up any such memories for her, she enjoyed the piece nonetheless.

"So, Bedivere," said Keith as they proceeded to pick their next pieces of sushi (Keith picked 2 Black, Willa selected 15 Red, Meowth chose 23 Red, and Meowstic settled upon 33 Black). "All things considered, I get the feeling there is a lot that's happened since I last saw you," he said. "I wouldn't dare pry if these events aren't something you'd be willing to share, of course, but if you're willing to talk about them, I'm willing to listen."

"As am I," Willa added. "Keith has talked about you before, Bedivere, and considering what I've been told, I confess myself interested in potentially knowing more about you."

Meowth and Meowstic, however, turned their attention to their fellow Pokémon, with Meowstic approaching Star's Meowstic. "It's Clair, yes?" she greeted her fellow Meowstic. "I saw you when your Trainer visited mine, you were still an Espurr- congratulations on your evolution. It occurs to me we have not been formally introduced- I am Meowstic, and my boyfriend Meowth, you'll see over there," she added, gesturing in the direction of the Shadow Sandygast, for Meowth had gone to introduce himself.

"Heya," Meowth greeted Leith. "Name's Meowth. Ova dere's my girlfriend, Meowstic. She's dat one dere, not the otha one," he added, indicating the one wearing the black bow on her head. "So, wat's yer name?"

~~~~~

Meanwhile, at the roulette table, Goto decided it was time to take his leave, and said his goodbyes to Diana and Marv. "Oh, it was good to meet you as well, Goto," said Diana. "I'm sure we'll be delighted to see you again sometime."

"Oh, yes," agreed Marv. "If ever you're in the town of Sludge Wave Coast, feel free to stop by. We have this nice apartment above the TV station- more spacious than that description would insinuate, I can promise," he grinned.

In the meantime, an unpleasant grating noise exploded from the Jigglypuff who suddenly found herself being manhandled by Lyle, who seemed to take issue to her close proximity. Lavender, in turn, seemed to take issue with being grabbed and moved just like that, and emitted the shrillest Screech she could muster until let go. And perhaps it was fortunate for Lyle that he was not looking at Lavender as he did this, for elseways he would've gotten an eyeful, for Lavender's already creepy countenance had been contorted into the most twisted and horrifying Scary Face ever seen on this plane of existence. And yet, as Lyle turned his attention to Marv's Gallade, the Jigglypuff chuckled, as though deeply amused.

Marv turned his attention to Lyle as he requested that Steakknife stop staring at him. "Oh, yes, my apologies," he nodded. "Steakknife, can you please stop staring?" he asked.

With all due respect, Marv, over my dead body, came the Gallade's telepathic response. I can't quite put my blade on it, but something is not right about him and I don't trust him for a second. He may lack a certain outward malice, I'll concede that much, but there's something I'm picking up on that sets me on edge all the same.

Steakknife, are you sure you haven't been spending too much time with Ginny? Marv thought back.

I'm serious here, Steakknife persisted. If you want me to stop staring, you and Diana collect whatever coins you still have and leave the table. I don't feel safe around that man and neither should you.

Marv gave a small sigh, and turned to Diana. "What do you think, Di?" he murmured.

"...I think your Gallade may as well be related to Keith for all the good it would do trying to change his mind when he's set on something," shrugged Diana. "But I also think he's proven himself worthy of trust in the past."

"True," nodded Marv. He considered this for the moment, then stood up. "Mr. du Pont, I wish to extend my apologies, but in the interest of setting my Gallade's mind at ease, I'm afraid Diana and I will be withdrawing from the game at this point in time."

"I hope you didn't take offense to his wariness," Diana added while Marv gathered the last of his and Diana's coins together. "Steakknife means well, but there are times he takes his role as protector too seriously to simply let down his guard on command. In any case, my boyfriend and I have had a wonderful time, and for that we thank you."

"Yes, indeed," concurred Marv. "Perhaps we will see each other again over the course of the evening, but for now, I do beg your pardon." As he said this, Steakknife gave a short bow, not breaking eye contact for an instant before practically ushering Diana and Marv away. Sweet and Bright were the last to leave, likewise bowing to Lyle They ended up sitting at a table not too far from where the Masterses were sitting along with Star and Bedivere, though for the moment did not interrupt, instead flagging down a waiter and ordering themselves some refreshments for the time being. Only then did Steakknife begin to relax, if only a little.

Once they were gone, Lavender adjusted her position, now hovering above the bit of the table's edge right where the news reporting couple had been seated, her coins piled on the table below. The black voids one might argue to count as eyes were turned unmistakably and unblinkingly on Lyle, though she saw him gesturing, motioning someone over. Moved by curiosity, the Jigglypuff turned to look, and saw the man presumably being gestured to. Her inscrutable, creepy smile widened ever so slightly before she turned her attention back to the game, using Psychic to levitate a small stack of coins onto a relatively safer bet of Wynaut as a species.
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Old 06-06-2022, 08:13 PM   #44
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Promises, promises. Check this hand, 'cause I'm marvelous.

Becky's mind swims with desire at Lyle's dulcet intonation of nice, dark and robust red... The taste of a fine Tannat or Sagrantino plays across her tongue's imagination, as she practically floats over to the roulette table, dancing to her own internal rhythm.

A waiter soon approaches with a glass of the promised wine, along with a sachet of coins, both of which the Oricorio-B snatches up with a flourish. With a sip of the wine from one wing and a flick of the other, the purse is gracefully tossed in front of her, claiming her seat at the roulette table. With a wink in Lyle's direction and a cheerful lift of her glass to indicate her thanks, she then turns to Lavender.

Hey, Sweets... she coos, in a melodic voice. Cute little goth getup you have there. Play here often?

If the bird was intimidated by Lavender, she did not show it - either the sign of an iron will or an impeccable poker face, though it's difficult to tell exactly which. As she strikes up conversation, she places her bet on Blue Azurill. No real rhyme or reason for it, but the bet had to go somewhere, anyhow... Besides, what did she care if she won or lost? Wasn't her money, now, was it?

---

Meanwhile, Oroitz enters the Casino lobby alongside William, seeming relieved both at the Lampent's recovery and the fact that he no longer has to carry him. Wiping sweat from his brow with his sleeve, he takes a moment to catch his breath. Between the intense heat and considerable exercise, the crow in human form could certainly use a rest, and something cold to drink... He takes a step back, motioning for William to go ahead of him. The exchange that follows inspires no small measure of disgust in Oroitz's expression, but he decides not to risk losing his cool at the pair of Indeedee for their insistence on refusing William entry. Instead, he lets his gaze wander past the psychic-types into the room, his eyes immediately picking out Becky's red plumage in the crowd. The Male Indeedee notices this, and makes a motion to Oroitz with a polite grin.

Ah, yes... Miss Rebecca specifically requested that we guide you to her upon your arrival, the Indeedee remarks, taking the invitation Oroitz rather absent-mindedly provides while distracted by William's sudden, stumbling departure.

"Hmph. Take care of yourself," Oroitz offers by way of goodbye to William, unable to mask the concern in his posture and tone. For the briefest of moments, he considers following William, but it was probably better for the pair to split up at this juncture to avoid suspicion - and besides, the horndog crow had his priorities. Mustering his best self-assured swagger, he makes his way toward the roulette table, his expression souring with every step.

Oroitz was not a fan of wine. He avoided gambling. He rather despised crowds, he detested small talk... and, of course, he wanted absolutely nothing to do with any of the Pokémon of Sludge Wave Coast. Yet here was Becky, engaging in all of these things that Oroitz very much did not like. At least the chap at the front of the table seemed nice enough - and what a charming pinstripe suit! Oroitz did like pinstripe suits.

Taking the spot beside Becky, he gives her a cordial bow, which only causes the bird to roll her eyes. To her further annoyance, the darkly-garbed man gruffly refuses both the wine and his own satchel of coins that an approaching waiter offers him, requesting a glass of ice-cold water and a shot of whiskey instead. As the waiter turns around, Becky reaches to grab the bag of coins, throwing it rather unceremoniously in front of Oroitz with a smirk.

Don't sit here if you're not going to place a bet, the Oricorio-B chirps. It's rude.

"What? No room for spectators?" Oroitz crosses his arms. "I should say that watching the proceedings is its own form of entertainment, is it not?"

Well, I'll be far more entertained if you don't just sit there like an angry lump, Becky counters. Sit there like an angry lump who's going to put some coins on the table.

With a snort and a few words mumbled under his breath, Oroitz shrugs his shoulders and places a bet on Green Azurill.
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Old 06-19-2022, 08:56 PM   #45
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Goto hasn’t even the chance to finish his cigarette before he picks up the sound of footsteps coming up the stairs, and the distinctive zip of a lighter being toyed with. Irritating that he needs to entertain even more company, but he should have known this little nook would be a smoker’s only oasis.

Casinos are cages for the senses, after all. All the glitz and glam is just a veil meant to conceal the outside world—the very passage of time itself—from those trapped within. Having worked in the very same parlor where he met Mercury, he knows all too well the extent to which psychology is twisted in the name of separating the rich and poor alike from their savings. Not that it made him any more immune against such vice. If anything, thinking you can outsmart the house is the biggest trap of all...

But, perhaps that knowledge is why the tailor can keep a straight face at all upon seeing a child stumble out onto the balcony, reeking heavily of booze and ash. It’s... not exactly what he expected, but it would be a lie to feign shock.

“Hm. Up here because you were thrown out, or kept out?” he asks dryly. The garishly-dressed man turns around, resting his shoulders against the railing as he peers down at the disheveled teenager. His eyes are cold, almost snake-like in the way they run over his form, leaving no detail to escape his notice.

Du Pont... his eyes linger on the engraving for a half-second more, before finally he returns to the boy’s face. Guess I should’ve known. I still don’t get to decide when I’m out...

A plume of smoke rises into the starlit sky as Goto sighs. He reaches into his tiger-striped robe, and plucks a loose cigarette out of his half-smoked pack, offering it to William on but one condition:

“You never got this from me,” he states as though it's just fact.

Perhaps it’s irresponsible of him. He could just as easily pull a lecture out of his ass about taking care of one’s health, and that there’s nothing worthwhile to be found in this kind of lifestyle, but that would be disingenuous. The truth is, he can’t bring himself to feel pity, nor disappointment—merely a quiet understanding behind those unsmiling eyes.

The world failed you, too, didn’t it?
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Old 06-19-2022, 11:07 PM   #46
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Star could feel like a fatal mistake was just made. That this place would soon turn towards hell, and a nice gala becomes the next scandal. She hoped that this wouldn't be the case, well, not that the chance wasn't high. When people's lives were in the spotlight, they cracked and breaked. Every little thing was found out and picked apart, and their laundry left to feed the masses.

So, she let the mess continue to unfold in front of her. She knew it best to not interfere now, and would just quietly enjoy the sushi as it would happen. The woman, waiting politely as the Masters family grabbed theirs, then grabbed the one at 8 Black

Clair, however, found herself confused. How could a Pokemon not have a name? Sure, they were that kind of Pokemon, but it felt... degrading to be called by their species name. Though, this was a formal occasion. She needed to act her best for her lady. If not, she wouldn't stay her tongue and speak her mind.

"Indeed, and thank you, fair lady. How have the both of you enjoyed the gala so far?" she responds to the ribboned Meowstic with a curtsy. "The sushi is absolutely terrific, though there is a catch. Luckily, none of us have hit it... yet." The cat then warned before looking towards Bedivere. Something was up. Yet, to not be rude, the Meowstic grabbed Red 19
---

"Welcome to the table, the both of you," Lyle welcome Becky and Oroitz as they reached the table, not caring the TV Couple had left. Both Pokemon, one in human guise. Ah, yes, the night mother. A lively character, perhaps he should hit her up one of these days. It would be divine.

"As for this round, I'll choose to abstain myself," he stated as he watched the waiter returned with the wine. A vintage, Parfum Rouge 1648. Ah, this won't be as good as something from the before times, but he'll partake in a Kalosian brew.

Taking a wine glass, he took a sip as he watched the wheel spin. Round and round we go... for the house the win. Purple Makuhita. He chuckled, knowing he would've lost the round no matter how he bet. He could feel the dealer's gaze on him, and he gave a charming smile back. His little hints were starting to get picked up, but he was allowed to stay. Good, he could continue his little charade.

"Now, Sir, it is a pleasure to meet you," he told Oroitz. "My name is Lyle, Lyle Du Pont. You and yours names?"

Stoke his ego, bring him up, and then set him loose. He gave a side glance to the game of chance taking place at one of the tables. Looks like he didn't have to rile up the other one of his prey. Get them fighting, slip the cue, and partake in the hedonism to follow.

---

William looked at the man, a bit surprised at the request. Like he was a snitch. Though the way he reacted to the lighter was odd, and he looked at it himself. A pure white one, nothing more, nothing less. Taking the cig, he lit it before putting the device away.

"Thanks," he muttered as he took a draft.

Smoke meant nothing to his body, for he was a living flame. Feed the flames, and the fire would grow stronger in a flash. So something like smoke? It meant nothing to a dead kid. A kid, who this man thought, was entirely alive. A half truth, perhaps, but this was no true reincarnation. Once he was free, and Theo was free, he'd be able to rest finally.

How he craved that oblivion, his soul yearned for it. This unlife, unending and uneasy, was something he hated. Who wanted to live forever? Not him, no. He was given his chance and get gave it up. He sacrificed himself to try and desperately save the person he loved. And this smoke? All it did was remind him of that night... as the smoke filled his lungs. That sort of high... as he burned alive... he would never have it again.

The Lampent blew a cloud of smoke over the railing, and just watched the night sky. He still hadn't responded to the other questions, but he needed this quickie. Not like he could get into the event. He wasn't 'old enough' which was stupid. No matter, from what he felt, it was most likely best he didn't meet the check.

"Kept out," he chuckled. "Too young, they said. Well, it matters not. Why are you out here, flashy man?" he turned to Goto with a toothy grin, yellow eyes flickering like a flame.
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Old 06-22-2022, 05:33 PM   #47
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Come to me, Miss Sleepless. In the swampland, I seek you.

Ever the polite guest and respectful friend, Bedivere maintains his trademark smile and rapt attention throughout Keith and Willa's response, yet the tension rising in the gentleman's demeanor was becoming more and more visible with each moment of the couple's assertions that they were indeed the same Keith and Willa of the past, just ten years displaced. His hands visibly begin to shake so horribly that he clenches his fists in a failed attempt to calm them, as his teeth visibly grind beneath the grin. The color begins to fade from his cheeks, his corpselike attributes becoming more pronounced, as his twinkling eyes seem to sink into a dark depth - blue, bottomless oceans. The mysteriously visceral reaction Bedivere displays seems calmed somewhat by Keith's admission that there was no way of knowing the exact truth of the matter, and either theory could potentially be correct. In fact, a slight, gurgling sigh of relief emits forth from Bedivere's water-logged lungs the moment Keith allows for either interpretation.

The couple takes their next pick of sushi, and while Keith's 2 Black may appear like a small maki roll, it is actually carefully-crafted marzipan! This sweet surprise is paired with a sunrise mocktail, made of orange juice and grenadine. Willa's 15 Red has some trickery afoot, as well - though her roll appears to be tuna nigiri, the "fish" is actually a slice of roasted red bell pepper, marinated and seasoned to appear like seafood. Fortunately for Willa, this pepper is not a particularly hot one, and the roll is paired with a mildly spicy Virgin Mary mocktail.

In an attempt to further calm his nerves - or else, distract his inner demons with the glorious pain of misfortune - Bedivere reaches for 35 Black, a gunkan roll with a surprisingly generous dollop of Ossetra caviar, served simply on a bed of fine sushi rice. The gentleman's eyes nearly roll in the back of his head with delight at the exquisite flavor of the caviar, paired perfectly with a sparkling Nebbiolo - clearly, a favorite of the eerie young man.

"Keith, my friend..." Bedivere pauses, choosing his words carefully. "If it is all the same to you, I really must insist that we abide by my interpretation of the subject at hand. In truth..." Bedivere's eyes momentarily flicker down to his side, as he reaches into his pocket, gingerly pulling out a hand-sewn handkerchief with the letter "B" stylized in seafoam-green thread. The seashell-white fabric is splashed with dark stains - red wine, perhaps? "I made an important promise long ago, to someone I cared for deeper than any ocean, that if you were ever to love another, I -" he stops, taking a deep breath. "I - well. It is a promise I very much doubt you would wish for me to keep, and though the one to whom I bound this oath has been... unreachable for a number of years... Once sworn, my oaths are unbreakable. So, please," Bedivere leans forward slightly, his eyes wild with dark intensity, "allow me use of this technicality to convince myself that you are not the one for whom I must carry out this grim vow."

Bedivere takes the handkerchief and carefully dabs the sides of his lips before gingerly returning it to his pocket. The momentary wave of madness seems to pass from his expression, and Bedivere's grin returns to its full strength. "Besides, I would much rather share the abundance of happy news I have regarding the Ladies Marion and Nimiane, should you wish to hear it. On occasions such as these, we should speak of that which brings joy, should we not?"

Meanwhile, Meowth takes a gamble on 23 Red - a classic spicy salmon roll with masago sauce, paired with a cool, refreshing cucumber-lime soda. The spice is certainly not unbearable, with no ghost pepper to be tasted. Meowstic's roll, 33 Black, is decidedly more rare - and more dangerous. Perhaps she should not tell Hebenon about her experience trying authentic fugu. The tingle of the poison dances across her lips, a unique delight which only few have sampled, for the technique to prepare the fish with just the right amount of venom is delicate, indeed. This delectable delight is paired with house-made passion fruit seltzer. Though Leith does not participate in the roulette festivities, she polishes off her plate of fruit just in time to receive introductions from Meowth. The Shadow Sandygast nods in response to the Pokémon's identification of exactly which Meowstic was his girlfriend, though her red eyes do not shift from the Meowth for even a moment. Perhaps a bit unnerving, though her expression reveals more curiosity than anything else.

Bedivere has named me Leith, the ghostly sandcastle answers matter-of-factly. That accent you have. Whence did it come? I know no others who speak the human tongue in the way you do.

Finally, Star and Clair test their fortunes with their choice of pieces. Star's 8 Black is a classic sweet potato tempura roll, with a light drizzle of teriyaki and no nasty surprises. The roll is paired with a rich, buttery Chardonnay. As for Clair's 19 Red, she is also treated to a tempura roll, though this one is filled with shrimp... and, again, no nasty surprise. Her roll is paired with a dry Riesling.

With only 15 rolls remaining, the likelihood of the spicy surprise revealing itself seems all but assured within the next two rounds... Unless the seven diners participating are fortunate enough to leave it as the last piece.

---

Oroitz is clearly annoyed by his loss, much as he tries to appear nonchalant. Becky, however, seems truly unphased, once again placing her bet on Blue Azurill. As far as she was concerned, the odds were the same now as they ever were, so she may as well go with the same bet. No sense in changing it. Oroitz, meanwhile, scrambles to place his bet on Purple Makuhita, as if lightning will somehow strike twice. Becky rolls her eyes slightly, but what did she care? It wasn't her money... Hell, it wasn't even his. If he wanted to chase someone else's victory, that wasn't her Arceus-damned problem.

Taking an overconfident sip of his whiskey - and nearly choking on it - Oroitz straightens himself out, his attempt at a self-assured posture coming off as rigid and pompous. He offers a polite nod and smile to Lyle, but Becky beats him to the punch, in an English that is parrot-like and stilted, yet still maintaining the bird's melodic tone.

"Rebecca! Hi!" She responds, waving a wing to Lyle in greeting. Then she tilts her head in Oroitz's direction and sings "Ooo-rooo-iiitz" very carefully. The darkly-clad gentleman is so genuinely shocked by Becky's talent that his thoughts are momentarily derailed from the name of their new acquaintance, which he knew he heard but moments ago, uttered by William with disdain...

"You speak the human tongue, Becky?" Oroitz exclaims, to Becky's lilting laughter.

"Silly bird! Silly bird!" Rebecca chides Oroitz, with a sing-song chortle, before adding a quick bit of Oricorio. If you can, I can, Ritzy-boy.

"Please don't call me that," Oroitz growls, which only encourages the fire type.

"Riiit-zyyyyyyy" she coos, delighting in the transformed Honchkrow's grumbling grunts of discontent.

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Old 06-22-2022, 06:56 PM   #48
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Keith's point of view on the whole matter of diverging timelines and all that, while they remained how he saw things, they seemed to really not sit well with Bedivere. To the point, in fact, where he seemed visibly relieved that Keith considered either man's interpretation to be plausible. And this did not go unnoticed by Keith as everyone present partook in their latest sushi selections- to general relief, not a one among them had yet sampled the spicy surprise that remained a looming threat. But surely, with so few pieces left to go, it was only a matter of time...

Once the sushi was done and swallowed, Bedivere spoke to Keith, choosing his words carefully as he insisted upon abiding by his interpretation of the events. And his reasoning soon became evident as he produced a hand-sewn handkerchief from his pocket. It was very, very well-made, and though Keith could not prove it, his eyes widened with realization as it dawned on him just who might have made that for Bedivere. And indeed, Bedivere revealed that he had made a promise, to someone he cared for most deeply. A promise that he did not go into detail on, but he maintained Keith would not likely want this promise kept, and those details alone elicited a small, unconscious nod of understanding from Keith. Bedivere touted his oaths to be unbreakable in a literal sense, even though the one he swore this one to hasn't been reachable in years, a detail that further cemented the general theory that had been forming in Keith's mind for the past minute or so.

"...I understand, my friend," Keith murmured. He found himself thoroughly unsurprised by the notion, in hindsight- much as he was of the opinion that she would have wanted him to move on following her death and find happiness, that would not likely have been so much the case far enough back for Bedivere to consider "long ago". He'd known this, accepted it, understood it, and had still loved her in spite of- if not because of- it. Even now, when he had his wife and daughter, a family he would not give up for anything, this was a part of his past he had not forgotten, a part he didn't ever want to forget, a memory he remained insistent on keeping alive. And the fact that at that moment Willa saw fit to rest a comforting hand on her husband's shoulder was a sweet reminder to Keith- he had no secrets from her, not even in this regard. Surely she understood at least the general gist of what she no doubt had just overheard. He gave her an appreciative smile, before turning his attention back to Bedivere, whose jovial and friendly personality was right back in place as he made an effort to change the topic, which Keith, now realizing the importance to him of doing so, did not question. In fact, Keith welcomed this, smiling at the mention of Marion. "OK, Nimiane, I think I remember," Keith remarked, though the slight chuckle revealed he did indeed remember that day the Bar had been almost ludicrously decked out in fancy decorations as Bedivere introduced the extremely regal female Frillish. "Marion, though- haven't seen her in a long time, though I've heard a thing or two- my friend Eddie says she actually became a full-on Pokémon professor, arboreal last name and everything," Keith stated. "But yeah- by all means, Bedivere, tell us, what's going on with them?" Willa nodded, looking intently at Bedivere- she'd never met either of them, but as with the drowned-looking gentleman before them, she'd heard stories from Keith, and found herself interested to know more.

Meowth, meanwhile, found himself slightly unnerved by the Shadow Sandygast. Which... actually didn't seem all that unreasonable on the surface. The Sandygast line was unnerving in and of itself, and when you add being a Shadow Pokémon into the mix... still, her expression seemed to be more a curious one than anything else. She introduced herself as Leith, and asked Meowth how he came to speak the human language. "Ah, well, da ting about dat is, I'm able ta speak dis way fer a weirdly specific reason," began Meowth. "Ya ever see dat TV show where dere's dese two bad guys and dey gots a talking Meowth? Used ta see a lot o' dat when I was wit my previous Trainer, and I knew dat kinda friendship, dat camaraderie, I wanted wat dat Meowth had right dere," he stated. "Suffice ta say, before I ended up wit a Trainer at all, I, uh... well, it's a long story, and not one dat's all dat easy fer me ta tell," he chuckled nervously. "Basically, I thought I had friends when I ain't. But anyways, once I were bein' traded ta dis guy here," he added, gesturing to Keith, "sometin' went screwy in da tradin' machine, and when I popped outta the otha end, I found I could speak like dis. We found out way later on dat it was due to a Munna or Musharna's Dream Mist gettin' caught in da machine from an earlier trade or sometin'," he explained. "Wat dat stuff does is visually represent da dreams and desires o' people and Pokémon, so when it reacted to da whole electrical process o' da tradin' machine, it made my dream come true as best it could, by makin' me able ta talk just like dat Meowth on TV."

Meowstic, meanwhile, was talking to Clair. "We are enjoying it very well, thank you," she responded. She followed the fellow Meowstic's gaze towards Bedivere. "That man does come across as strange," conceded Meowstic. "Though Meowth and Keith seem to be familiar with him. If they trust him, that is sufficient to me."

There were few pieces of sushi remaining, and the suspense was building. Keith selected 4 Black, Willa took 6 Black, Meowth took 25 Red, and Meowstic selected 5 Red.

~~~~~

Lavender looked on with mild amusement as the pair of avians made their way to the table, and gave a creepy giggle as the fiery Oricorio referred to the Jigglypuff's overall appearance as a "cute little goth getup." In response, she slowly turned to face the Oricorio, creepy grin in place, set just below a pair of circular black voids. After a moment of unblinking and unnerving eye contact, the Jigglypuff giggled again. "My first time here," she replied. She listened as Rebecca introduced herself and Oroitz to Lyle, speaking remarkably in human language. "As long as we are making introductions, I am Lavender," the Jigglypuff said to the pair of birds. "It's nice to meet you, Rebecca." She then turned her attention to the more non-avian of the two at the moment. "You, Oroitz, don't look happy to be here. Or happy at all, for that matter," observed the Jigglypuff. "I wonder why that is?" she murmured. "You look as stiff and uncomfortable as my prey does when I draw near," she added, her grin widening creepily. "Ah, but no, you are no prey of mine," she added, shaking her head... whole body... whatever. "I do not usually make such reassurances, but all circumstances considered, I will deem this an acceptable exception. There is someone I know, and there is someone you know, and I happen to know that the someone I know would consider displeasing the someone you know a no-no. You know?" Lavender paused here, to place a new bet, this time on Purple Wynaut.


*As a result of reaching 30 Bond, Meowstic learned Defensive Shield!*

*As a result of reaching 30 Bond, Meowstic learned Shadow Storm!*

*As a result of reaching 30 Bond, Meowstic learned the MT move Meteor Beam!*
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Last edited by Missingno. Master; 06-24-2022 at 06:01 PM. Reason: Minor grammatical fix.
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Old 07-04-2022, 09:37 PM   #49
ShadowDRGN
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Goto chuckles drly at the moniker ‘flashy man’. Leave it to a child to describe him in a way that’s both simple, sincere, and so terribly cutting.

“Mm, just needed a break from the atmosphere, is all. It’s been quite a while since I last attended a party like this. I’d forgotten how stifling it can be,” he replies, shaking his head slightly, “I’d say I needed some fresh air but... well, it seems there’s not much of it out here, either.”

Ashen snow settles atop the railing as Goto takes another drag. Unlike his unbeknownst-to-him dead friend, the smoke which fills his lungs is all too real. The dry heat licking his booze-soaked throat, the choking feeling permuting his lungs, slowly infesting each airway with tar—he hated every moment of it, and yet this 12mg cylinder of slow death is the only thing helping him keep his scattered thoughts together.

That state of quietude is all too fleeting, however. The tailor grinds the smoldering butt into the brass, and tosses into an almost passive-aggressively-stationed bin. The temptation to light up another hits him almost immediately, but the only thing he hates more than the craving is the smell. There’s no social poison more potent than the stench that permeates an addict’s entire being.

He sighs, tilting his head back so he could gaze off into the stars above. No matter how much he tries to take his mind off it, the boy’s lighter continues to bubble to the surface like mud from a crack. It just doesn’t sit right with him, none of it does.

Even if his hunch is correct, and he’d be dragging himself into even more gang business... Perhaps it’s the large amount of liquid courage he’s imbibed, but he feels ready to face that eventuality.

“I am curious, though,” Goto says, his amber eyes locking onto the boy's, “you must have known you were going to be turned away, so why try? I can’t imagine you’d go through all the trouble trying to gamble here, when there are a million glorified slot machines you can play on your phone.”

Goto folds his arms, expectantly waiting for William’s answer. The boy knows something—he’s sure of that much—he just needs to find an angle.

Last edited by ShadowDRGN; 07-04-2022 at 11:19 PM.
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Old Yesterday, 04:08 PM   #50
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Jirachi Can we pretend that airplanes in the night sky are like shootin' stars

William blinked... Right, he was just some preteenage idiot. He had no life, honestly, that could be given or said. No, all he could do was hope. Though, god above, he could really use a wish right now. A wish to save him from this living hell. He wanted to burn and ignite, light up into flames and waste away. For, the question was valid, and he was stupid. He craved chocolate-coated kisses, beneath the mistletoe. He craved to be alive, even if he wanted death. Part of him wanted to be in another time, place, reality... Where he and Theo were alive, and none of this EVER FUCKING HAPPENED.

He shook his head and gave Goto a wry, defeated smile. Of course, 'play games' on his phone. The phone, he took out, was obviously a dummy slide phone. What phone? He was a Pokemon now. He didn't have a phone. He had a trainer. This was something he had forgotten to ask Oroitz to dump on their way here. Only used to get the horny idiot bird man to help him burn the bar down.

"There's someone here I sorely need to talk to, that's all. Considering my circumstances, I'd normally be able to get through to the door, but I'm missing someone. Knowing him, he's out training everyone else. As for parties, all I'm used to are cute little suburban house parties... Where everything is perfect," he sighs out.

He goes to wave off the man. His cigarette was done, and he was starting to get too pissed. He tried his best to revert back to his true form, but couldn't. Of course, leave it to his patron to manipulate the environment so things would feed his desires. Instead, there was a waiter, looking charmed, coming up the stairs.

"For you, sir, your father wishes to speak with you once the party is over. White Limousine," the waiter states while handing him a small tome before disappearing beneath the stairs.

William cocks his eye, then realizes exactly what was going on. He looked at the lighter and saw the engraving on it. 'Du Pont'. Cheeky fucking bastard. He then looked at the book in his hands and realizes what it is instantly. To most, it would be nothing more than a simple black leather-bound book. No title, unless you had the eyes for it. No, he knew what this musty, worn book was. Lemegton.

"Well, crap. Guess he wants to talk to me too. Now, considering your reaction to this lighter earlier, you've met him," William speaks with absolute ire and disgust. "He's hard to read, and even harder to get anything out of. A kid can only take so much before they're sick of him, horny bastard. He always does something to fulfill his hedonistic desires... So, if you picked up on why he's here... And if there was anything weird about him, tell me."

---

Lyle watches intently as the Pokemon bicker amongst themselves. Oj, how joyful. Yes, this was good. This was really good. But he could tell, if he pitted the drowned man and his dear Oroitz here... oh the debauchery! It would make the night all the sweeter... Deliciously sweeter, and that was making him all hot and bothered. Perhaps he would take one, no, both! No, he mustn't touch here. No, he needed to save that for the homunculus, once he found it. So, this edging foreplay was all he could do.

So, with a singular coin bet on Orange Wynaut, he let the wheel spin. The game was done, in his eyes. All the pieces were in place... and he watched as the wheel spun, and spun, and spun. The dealer would make him lose, and another win. They were onto him here, so he needed to play along. The one coin bet was more than enough to signal to the house he was going to comply. And he was right, as the wheel ended up on Purple Makuhita. Did he mention the coin had that space on it? Oh, no he didn't. The house did, though.

"Congratulations, Mister Oroitz!" Lyle booms, loud enough for the entire hall to hear. He gave a side glance at the other roulette table going on and waited and hoped. If his plan was to succeed... to the most optimal climax, Bedivere would need to pick the cursed piece. Break one man, butter the other. So, he clapped thrice.

"As the 'richest' man at the table now, would you like to treat us? What comes around, goes around as they say. I shared my luck with all of you, and I hope you can too. Perhaps, a shot of Fireball? Or, perhaps, something that would help you loosen up, you do quite look miserable yes," he continues to speak, subtly suggesting he's able to hear the entire conversation between the three. For, after all, he predated all of them and then some.

"Oh, right my lovelies, you both are looking quite famished," he states to his two associates. He then snaps, and a waiter comes over quickly.

"Please, give both of them your finest," he states to the waiter before motioning to both to order food. He then procures a simple, leatherbound book from his vest. "Right, please give this to my... son. He should be up on the balcony for now, and let him know I wish to speak with him once the night is over."

With a devilish grin, he looked at the roulette table with fervor. Yes, more. He needed more. One last breaking point was all he needed. For the flattery and fighting to begin. He poured a bottle of wine and began to sip. The fun was soon about to begin.

---

Star was concerned. Extremely concerned. Something was up here, and she felt something was off in the air. Perhaps it was just the myriad spirits she was consuming, but she knew drama was stirring. Even more so than the drama at the table. This cordiality was soon about to break, and then she heard a booming guffaw and congratulations from the roulette table.

"Lady Estelle, is something the matter?" she heard Clair ask her, and the woman shook her head. No, this was just her past feelings coming to light. Even if her gut feeling tended to be right, she was too inebriated to properly think or consent to things at this point. She haphazardly reached out towards Red 9, determined to finish.

Clair, on the other hand, grabbed Black 20 before looking at the other Meowstic. She could tell her trainer was feeling unwell, but she was also a woman of her word. So, the duo would stay until they were finished.

"From what I have seen, there are quite a few eccentrics in this kind of world. I feel no ill intentions from him. There are a few here, but this is a casino. Unless someone was here to hurt my lady, it would be best to ignore them. For now, let us finish this game
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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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