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 Perception

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Lord E V
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PostSubject: Perception   Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:29 pm

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The chateau had been a chore thus far, but Krikka knew from past experience that it was only going to get much worse. There she stood in front of the Ruined Passage, a specific section of the nonsensical building that was known for making even the rest of its structure look sane in comparison. It seemed to feel like being a normal hall on this day, but she wondered how long that would last. She knew not how the house worked, but she knew enough to recognize the infamous passage when she saw it even if it looked nothing like how it did in her first encounter with it. The truly was not looking forward to this part of the trip, especially since she didn't have any unwitting powerhouses to guide her this time around. It seemed she was the powerhouse now, at least compared to the individuals with her. It was supposed to be her job to do the protecting, which wasn't something she was happy about; and worse, she had gone and made things worse for herself by injuring both of them, one of which to the point of having to be carried.

She knew Goro no longer trusted her if he ever did in the first place, and Solus was unconscious. Odds were she would be getting no help if she got herself into any trouble; she couldn't recall the details, but she had dug herself into a hole and would have to work her way out of it. She would have considered turning back if not for her knowledge that "back" wasn't exactly a thing that existed in this place; unfortunately, her only option was forward. "Keep your guard up. This place is stupid," she spoke bitterly, quick and to the point without even making eye contact with the croagunk. Then without a moment's wait she started off down the hall, expecting Goro to follow her. He didn't have much of a choice at the moment, given his choices were to stick with the one capable of properly fending off all the ghosts and the apparent occasional psychic... or going off on his own and taking his chances. He was a brute, but Krikka doubted he was actually stupid enough to throw away all sense of self-preservation.

Solus was showing signs of life in the form of subtle movements and occasional noises, which had to be a good sign. Probably. The umbreon could only assume he wouldn't be happy about his condition when he finally woke up, but he'd just have to deal with it. At the moment, there were far more important things to worry about than the feelings of her allies... or herself, for that matter. She focused solely on the hall and tried to ignore the still-looming confusion regarding her own actions; she couldn't see any end to the path despite the light of candles running along the walls. There were no doors in sight either, leaving an empty hallway of indiscernible length to traverse. She knew that could change at any moment, but it was still a bit disheartening to see. She doubted moving forward at a faster pace would actually help to speed things along, so she kept her stride relatively low so as not to waste any energy. She had a lot of dead weight to carry anyway, which would have made running considerably more tasking than normal. She knew the big heap of buizel was burdening her by her own doing, but that wouldn't stop her from blaming him for it.

She wondered if Solus would stay with her after this... or Goro... or if they would both leave. Maybe she could regain their favor if she stayed true to her word and did what she had come here to do. Or maybe they'd leave, in which case why did she even care? It wasn't like she needed anyone else to help her; sure, the assistance was nice, but it was far from a requirement. She had managed just fine on her own before meeting either of them, and at least one of them wasn't useful for much more than entertainment. The more she thought about it, the more she decided her guilt and concern were misplaced, and the more those feelings faded away. If her two allies left her, it didn't matter; if they died, it didn't matter; if they decided to stay with her, good for them, but it still didn't matter. All she needed was herself, and all she needed to look out for was herself.

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Fri Dec 29, 2017 1:11 am

Krikka didn't actually expect too much from Goro, let alone Solus, but she was surprised at how well they reacted.  Despite the obstacle in their way making a pretty good sympathy case, and despite their "great" leader's constant failures, they were still sticking with her.  Maybe they just trusted her more than the total stranger, or perhaps they thought her more capable of protecting them, but either way, it was a relief to see they were still committed to what they had come here to do.  With Solus at one side and Goro at the other, it actually occurred to the umbreon for the first time that she had a team... or at least, she would if she played her cards right.  Sure, she knew the two were her allies and each followed her for their own reasons, but she was only just now beginning to experience the feeling of having a team by her side.  It made her confident, but more importantly, she suddenly didn't care so much about proving herself; they were sticking with her at her worst, and neither of them were going to like her either way, so what point was there?

She was... content.  They weren't quite friends, but for the first time, it actually seemed like the life she had chosen could give her what she longed for... whatever that was.  For once, she felt good, like she didn't need to prove anything to herself.  That was arguably more dangerous than her usual attitude.  She watched as Solus went forward to open the door, dismissing the froslass completely, and she couldn't help but feel satisfaction; this was a reminder of why she liked him, why she kept him around in the first place.  He was fearful and pathetic, but he was no coward, and he had quite the knack for rebellion.  His matter-of-fact statement that he was going to open the door just added to the show, serving well enough to make Krikka let go of her spite toward him.  When it wasn't directed at her, she loved his attitude.  He just needed to be taught how to use it properly, and after they were out of here, that was something she wanted to work on.  She was enjoying this display of behavior that mirrored her own will, so of course she was upset when it was put to a stop.

The bold little ghost continued her display of defiance, recoiling from the buizel for only a moment before suddenly thrusting her arms forward and knocking him off his feet as he neared.  It seemed almost like it physically pained her to "hit" someone, even though she obviously wasn't trying to actually hurt him.  "I'm sorry, I-I'm sorry!" she frantically stumbled over her own words trying to make her actions right, acting as if she had just stabbed him when she had really only pushed him over.  Unfortunately for her, Krikka agreed with her; she insulted and beat Solus on a daily basis, but seeing someone else do it...

She spoke without thinking: "No one... touches Solus... but me."

The froslass hesitated for a moment, her gaze turning to the umbreon's beating yellow eyes.  "Sol... lus?  I...-" Nevi muttered in confusion, picking up on the sudden change of name.  However, the increasingly apparent fact that she had been lied to seemed low on her list of priorities.  "If you're here to fight what's in there, you... you're clueless!  You'll summon it, then Giratina will take it and that's all!  The only thing you'll do is help it end the world!  This isn't something you can just fi-"

"Fine by me."  Playing pretend had clearly served its purpose, so Krikka was done.  Playing nice wasn't working, and the pest wasn't moving, so for once, it seemed like it was about time for her to just be herself.  The idling aura around her flared up with newfound intensity, a look of shallow annoyance on her face.  She was bothered by this froslass constantly interrupting and insistently arguing against her, but to her surprise, what she hated even more was how Solus had been pushed over.  He belonged to her, and no one would touch her property without her permission.

Nevi tried further to plead, but it did little good at this point; Krikka's ears may as well have been deaf.  "Look, I don't care who any of you are or why you're here, really.  Just don't do this, please.  You don't seem evil.  You have to know this is wrong," her eyes flitted to the croagunk for a moment, a mix of betrayal and lingering hope in her sad expression.  "Whatever brought you here, it's not too late to-"

Krikka loosed a highly charged shock wave fueled by her own desire to inflict harm.  That's what it was, really: a manifestation of one's own inner demons.  It worked so well for her because, usually, she was in tune with herself; she accepted and embraced the darkest parts of her.  She was always able to emit a more powerful pulse when she wasn't doubting herself with feeble emotions.  Her expression remained unchanged as she watched the wave of darkness wash over the froslass, who threw her arms up in an X-formation in front of her in some vain attempt to block it.  That wouldn't work, and Krikka knew it.  Solus would probably be thankful for her actions after he'd been shoved over, and Goro... would have to get over it.  He acted like he wanted to be such big, bad "tough guy," so if anything, he would thank her too for tearing the concept of emotional attachment out of him.  Best case scenario: he was just humoring the ghost for the sake of the guise and actually hated her as much as Krikka herself did.

She put her right leg forward and took a confident step without waiting for a response.  If they were her team, she didn't need to walk on eggshells with them.  She needed to be confident, and she would be.  They would follow her if she acted like a leader instead of the unsure child she had been thus far.  Neither of them were truly good inside; neither of them would care if she was evil or cruel.  All she needed to do was her job.

"You should have walked away."

The distinct voice of the froslass radiated through the black haze spreading out around the doorway.  She still sounded sad, but now it was... remorseful.  Suddenly, a blast of wind exploded from within the remnants of Krikka's dark energy, blowing it away and spreading throughout the room.  There wasn't much force behind this apparent attack, but it brought with it a rapid drop in temperature.  As she cut through the shroud around her, Nevi threw her arms back behind her and icy spikes surged over her exterior.  Within a moment, she had practically become a living blade, covered in spiked armor and topped off with large claws over her hands.  The coat of ice was pure to the point of transparency, shaping and spiking out in ways that complimented her appearance and retained her elegant form.  Upon her face was not anger, but dread.

Save for a pause and briefly widened eyes, Krikka gave no response.  A small fleck of ice fell upon her fur, then another.  She looked up at the ceiling to see... clouds... They were about to be in a hailstorm.

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:40 am

Goro was relieved, if anything, when Solus took the initiative and went to go open the door. He didn't expect Nevi to put up any sort of resistance, even if she was being uncharacteristically firm about all of this. Or maybe it wasn't so uncharacteristic - he'd only known the froslass for less than an hour. She seemed rather timid and passive, so he had simply assumed that she wouldn't have this amount of spine to her, but here she was standing up to Krikka, and by extension, him. He had aimed his stern glare on the ghost type, hoping she would take the hint and just back down, but she didn't seem interested in meeting his eyes. Instead, she remained where she floated, hovering in place with her arms outstretched while the buizel in front of her slowly approached. It was a rather tense moment. He hoped for and honestly expected an anticlimactic ending. The croagunk figured that Nevi would give up, maybe heave a sigh of exasperation or plead one last time before slinking off in defeat, floating through the floor the way she first came. Instead, Goro started in surprise as he actually witnessed the exact opposite of that.

Nevi recoiled only slightly from Solus upon his approach, before rearing forward and shoving the buizel over. Of course, she immediately began rapid firing off apologies, acting as if she had done something totally unforgivable. Really, though, she was far from the first thing to knock the weasel Pokémon off his feet in this haunted house. But Goro was very surprised that she'd actually done so. He didn't react at all, save for an impressed expression on his face after it occurred, but Krikka sure did. The croagunk's blood ran cold as her words registered to him; there went their little "cover", right along with the umbreon's patience and any remaining goodwill. Or, at least, any restraint she had. The girl probably didn't have an ounce of goodwill in her entire body. He knew, then, that there was going to be some kind of retaliation in order. It was one thing for Nevi to be grating and annoying while she helped them, but it was another thing to stand against Krikka and actually strike her pet. Goro had done the same thing once and he had suffered for it - granted, he was offered a way out. He wanted to hope Nevi would get the same, but a part of him knew better than to hope for such a thing by now.

Indeed, from there the situation spiraled into chaos. Goro wanted to jump into the conversation at some point, but between Krikka's matter-of-fact no-nonsense tone and Nevi's frustrated pleading, he hadn't a clue what to say or when to say it. All he was able to do was look on with a rising sense of panic and helplessness as Krikka's aura intensified and Nevi asked them once more to simply turn around and leave. She even met his eyes for a moment there, and he felt a biting disappointment and bitter frustration at her expression when she did. Of course, not even that was allowed to last for very long; Krikka had lost patience, and with it came a soaring pulse of dark energy tearing a path across the room. The croagunk watched as the energy attack crossed the distance between darkling and ghost and struck the latter dead-on, met only with a half-hearted attempt at blocking. Two of those had put him on his ass during his battle with the umbreon and he doubted that Nevi would be able to take them as well as he could. It was a shame because Goro had been very interested in the froslass, and he liked her quite a bit. But now she was an obstacle in Krikka's path, and if she wasn't down for the count already she was going to be soon. A defeated sigh escaped from him, his posture sinking in on itself. At least he hadn't been forced to pick a side in their fight; it was simply over before he even had a chance to. Hopefully, if the froslass survived this punishment, she would come to forgive him one day.

Next to him, Krikka stepped forward boldly. And what reason did she have not to? The only thing between her and her goal here was dealt with, hidden behind a swirling miasma of dark smoke left over from a super effective dark pulse attack. The only thing left for her to do was to cross the room, kick aside the possibly dead but hopefully just unconscious body of the fool girl who had challenged her, open the door and claim her prize. Whatever the fuck it even was. Goro was left feeling very sour about it - Nevi hadn't deserved this. She'd approached them wanting to make friends, agreed to help guide them, and had even saved them when Krikka's rashness put them in a dangerous situation.Then she had done what the thought was right to keep them from making another mistake, and the only thanks she got for it all was a half-assed one from him and a swift dark pulse from Krikka. Goro didn't move from his spot, clenching his fists at his side and staring at the spot where his almost-friend had been presumably struck down. He didn't know what he was going to do in the next thirty seconds. Did he go and make sure Nevi was okay? What if she wasn't? Did he go see her to safety or leave her as she was? He couldn't just walk past her, could he? There was no way she would be okay after a hit like that. Not her; as sweet and passive and bubbly as she was, he couldn't see it.

But he could hear her. Goro started once more in shock as he heard Nevi's soft, sad, remorseful voice from behind the dark smoke-screen. His head jerked upward and his eyes widened in surprise as he took in the sight in front of him. A strong gust of wind blew the cover away, revealing the froslass looking no worse for the wear. Goro had seen the attack make contact with her, and he knew she didn't use any kind of special move to block it. She'd... she'd tanked it. He watched in a continued stupified, shocked state and the gentle and friendly guide threw her arms back and grew a spiky armor of ice, complete with claws and all. She looked just as hauntingly pretty as before, but now there was a very clear image of razor-sharp lethality to her. Goro shivered. It was suddenly cold.

"You're strong, too." The words escaped from his gullet in a hushed, awed breath. Nevi was strong. The implications of this weren't lost on him; of course, she had to be strong to live in the chateau, but it just... hadn't occurred to him that she could be until now. But now things made sense. There was the reason that the other ghosts were content to obey Nevi, or at least negotiate with her in the gengar's case. She wasn't the shrinking violet that he'd taken her to be. While this was shaping up to be a very bad thing for Krikka, and by extension him, Goro couldn't help the grin that grew on his face. It was equal parts pleasant surprise, joy, and excitement. She wasn't going to just bow down and take whatever shit Krikka gave her. Of course, this meant that he was probably going to have to fight her since he had aligned himself with the umbreon in question, but now Nevi was strong. How strong, he didn't know, but he was all too eager to find out.

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Mon Jan 01, 2018 10:42 pm

Solus had underestimated Nevi. From everything he had observed of the Ghost-type, he wouldn’t have ever guessed she’d dare commit a single act that could even remotely be considered violent. He’d thought she was the pinnacle of pacifists; he’d expected her to allow him to simply walk by and open the door, with only her continued protesting as a deterrent. But this assumption was clearly wrong. It took a moment longer than it probably should have for Solus to realise that it was Nevi that had sent him to the ground. When he did, he could only give the froslass a disappointed look.

This could have been easy. All she had to do was stand aside and let the inevitable happen. It would have saved time and spared Nevi from a fight she was certain to lose. But no, she had to make things more difficult. Now they’d have to waste time and energy dealing with the ghost so that they could finally get to summon an evil god or something and then finally leave. Without much hesitation, Nevi began to apologize for shoving him, but Solus didn’t think she was apologizing for the right thing. Solus had half a mind to shout at her—to inform her that she couldn’t actually stop Krikka from doing what she wanted—but he was halted by the sound of Krikka’s voice.

Krikka’s words caught Solus completely off guard. They really shouldn’t have, as the ideals behind the statement were very clear to Solus—Krikka had expressed the mentality more than once before. Yet still, it surprised him that she vocalised the thought out loud It managed to confuse Nevi as well, though for different reasons. The irony of Krikka being to one to break their cover did not go unnoticed by Solus—not that he was going to comment on it at this point. Nevi didn’t dwell on this for long before returning to her attempt to dissuade the group from continuing on their current course of action. Trouble was, her efforts were actually doing the opposite.

Solus was sure Krikka would only be further encouraged to pursue her goal if it meant making her even partially responsible for possibly ending the world. As for Solus, Nevi was giving Krikka’s plan legitimacy—any doubts he may have had were completely gone now. As one of Krikka’s Dark Pulses soared over him and into Nevi, his hopes of dealing with this peacefully were also gone. For a moment Solus was disoriented by the haze the impact created, but this cleared after a rush of frigid wind swept over him, leaving him shivering. When he looked back up at the ghost, she was armed and armoured with ice. It was quite intimidating from his prone position directly in front of her.

“F-f-fuck, Nevi, this c-could have b-been easy—” the cold was making him stutter, “We’d all have b-been better off if you’d-d j-just leave!”

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Sat Jan 06, 2018 6:18 pm

Krikka was visibly undeterred by the admittedly impressive display from the froslass; an attack that should have ended the conflict ended up doing the opposite, which should have been concerning, and it was... but she was determined.  No matter what it took, no matter how hard she had to try, she was going to get in that room and do whatever it was she had come here to do.  She still didn't know exactly what that was, but she planned to find out even if she had to go through a pest or two to get there.  She had not come so far just to turn around, no matter the reason.  She had no doubt she would get past this obstacle even if it was clearly a formidable foe.  As long as she actually used her head for a change and utilized the two allies at her disposal, this would be easy.  She had to believe it would be easy, to have unwavering faith in herself, because she needed to keep her own morale up for what was to come.  If she let herself look scared or slipped up due to any stray emotion, it would surely impact Solus and Goro as well; she was supposed to be leading them, after all.

It was easy for her to instill herself with blind confidence and avoid inviting fear into her, but resisting the influence of anger was proving to be more of a challenge.  Instead of just attacking, the froslass decided to speak once more: "Let me know when you want to quit."  The warning seemed so confident and condescending in nature, Krikka could feel the fur along her spine bristle in agitation.  She felt a light, fuzzy sensation in her head for a moment, smothering her senses and bringing out her natural desire to maim, but she restrained herself.  It had already been made clear that she wasn't strong enough to overpower this ghost, and at the same time there were issues such as her allies both having very limited means of attack.  Solus in specific could do nothing virtually nothing to faze a ghost and was already badly injured, which would surely make him a hindrance.  The umbreon's mind raced for a way to make use of him in this situation, but she could think of no task he could perform effectively.

Perhaps with time she could have thought of something, but alas, she was afforded no such luxury.  The opposing froslass' arms were pulled inward and wrapped around herself before being whipped out to either side in a violent motion, sending a violent wave of force through the falling flakes of hail.  This gust of wind spread forward throughout the room, carrying with it a subzero chill and hefty power.  Krikka made a futile attempt to counter the attack with a dark pulse; the wind devoured her darkness and washed over her, knocking her clean off her paws despite her best efforts to brace herself.  The majority of her fur was frozen stiff by the time she touched the floor, and she could feel the cold biting through her coat and biting into her skin.  Eyes shut tight, she was momentarily debilitated by the varying sources of discomfort.  All she could think about was how astoundingly strong this froslass was despite being a pathetic, cowardly nuisance.  She was losing to someone who could barely even muster the nerve to fight, and in fact, the display thus far could hardly have been called a fight.

In fury, Krikka threw herself off the ground... or rather, attempted to.  The pain and insecurities surging through her had overshadowed a concerning reality: she couldn't move.  It wasn't that she was entirely paralyzed, but rather, specific parts of her body seemed entirely unresponsive.  She opened her eyes and looked down at herself to see that a worryingly high portion of herself was covered in ice; she had instinctively turned to her left to shield her face from the blast, and the opposite side of her body was nearly entirely frozen; her fur was practically glued together, rendering her nearly motionless.  She had no idea how her allies fared in the aftermath of the attack, but she hoped they weren't as badly affected as her.  Still, she kept calm and tried to analyze the situation in search of a solution; the ice didn't seem thick, so she figured she could simply break it through sheer force if she tried hard enough.  That she did, straining every muscle in her body in an attempt to break the ice at her joints, but she was interrupted by a surge of pain.

It was all the egotistical vixen could do to restrain herself from sounding out her distress; she didn't want to give such an appearance of submission, and she certainly didn't want her allies to worry about her.  Still her eyes clamped shut once more while she grit her teeth under the pressure of this strange assault.  Her muscles locked up as the cold from the ice caressing her seemed to seep into every fiber of her being, practically attacking her soul.  She felt cold in a way beyond physical sensation; it was something vaguely familiar, but she couldn't quite pinpoint why.  It was unpleasant and she couldn't help but let out something between a moan and a growl at the feeling.

Still in front of the door stood Nevi, an ominous purple glow emanating from her right arm outstretched toward the umbreon.  This same glow seeped from the pale white frost coating the target, and she showed no intention of stopping willingly.


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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Sun Jan 07, 2018 1:45 pm

It seemed that Nevi wasn't just powerful, but she was lippy, too! Instead of getting angry or incensed at the froslass' quip, Goro's grin widened, his excitement for the coming conflict only growing. This was definitely a pleasant surprise. The last thing he wanted to happen was for her to be struck down by Krikka, and some divine power seemed to take mercy on him because all of the sudden Nevi was not taking any shit. His heart had sunk whenever that first dark pulse made contact with the ghost, but now it was bursting with a mixture of joy and excitement. She was powerful, to be sure - to be able to shrug off a super effective attack like that... it just wasn't done unless you were just that much stronger than whoever attacked you. And she boasted skill, to boot; the croagunk would be lying if he said he wasn't equal parts intimidated and deeply impressed by the deadly and elegant ice armor adorning her. His interest in the ghost was only growing more and more. His hands tightened into curled fists, tension surging through him, his mind dominated by thoughts of Nevi and how she was about to resist them. Was she a long-range fighter, or was that armor not just show? Did she plan on swooping in and cutting them to ribbons, or was it just a deterrent for any moron who thought he'd swing at a sharp ice monster? He didn't know, but he sure as hell planned to find out.

Goro had the distinct thought of breaking off from his position at Krikka's side and perhaps moving to flank or even just dash at the froslass, but once again she surprised the lot of them. Before he could say or do anything, Nevi brought her arms in and hugged herself briefly, before whipping them out in a reverse motion. He couldn't quite see the attack itself, but judging from the rapidly sweeping flakes in the air, she had sent some kind of air-wave at them - Krikka, at his side, evidently came to a similar conclusion and thought to counter with a dark pulse. It was fortunate that he was still beside her, as she would be covering for him in this instance as well. Goro relaxed for just an instant as the umbreon's shockwave shot forward at Nevi's attack, and he immediately regretted it as it was instantly overcome. Darkness evaporated and frost dominated as Nevi's blizzard swept through it, an incredible unseen force crashing into both Goro and the vixen at his side. The frog Pokémon was flung bodily backward by the attack, a bone-deep chill settling over him, the coldness biting in a way that was distinctly unnatural. He landed hard on his back, head knocking backward onto the floor, spread-eagle on the ground a ways behind Krikka. The croagunk lay there for more than just one moment, eyes shut tight in surprise and pain.  His chest was suddenly devoid of air - the wind had been knocked out of him. Sucking in several desperate breaths, Goro grimaced as the chill in the air spread through him from within - what a fucking start to a fight.

He rolled over onto his stomach, limbs shaking and body shivering, coldness burning through him in a way that he'd never before experienced. Somehow, he was able to bring his hands underneath him, pushing up off the ground. It seemed he was correct - Nevi was damn strong. As the croagunk groggily pushed himself to his feet, his back to his leader and opponent, he decided that he hated the cold. It was just his luck that Nevi turned out to be a long-range fighter, too. Not only did she have that weird ass blizzard attack, but it was damn strong. Even Krikka's dark pulse from earlier, during her little episode, didn't quite compare to the force to that. Turning back to take in the scene behind him, it dimly occurred to Goro that he could see his shaky breath leaving his mouth - it was fucking cold all of the sudden. Krikka hadn't been pushed back quite as far as he was, but it seemed she was worse off regardless - she appeared to be in quite dire straights. The umbreon was all but half-frozen, her face locked in a tight expression of pain as... something was being done to her - it was hard to tell. His gaze traveled from her to their opponent, and it was then that it dawned; Nevi was still attacking. The froslass' arm was pointed at his leader, glowing an alarmingly mean shade of purple. It looked distinctly ghastly in nature, and Goro didn't like it.

Against a ghost of this power level, Krikka was their saving grace. Goro could probably punch Nevi, sure, but it was more likely that she would turn him into an icicle before he got close to her. But there was no helping it in this instance; he didn't think Solus could do anything to her, and Krikka was busy getting hurt. His mind made up, Goro surged forward - although, with quite a bit of a slow start. He actually stumbled forward, the bone-deep chill in his body clearly having some kind of effect on him, before getting a hold of himself and running forward. He didn't rush directly at Nevi; rather, he approached her from an angle, so that he'd be attacking her side while she was staring forward at Krikka. It was entirely likely that she would notice and intercept his approach, but the important thing here was getting her attention off of Krikka. Still, for good measure, his fists flared a dull silver hue as he closed the distance between him and his opponent - if he did get close, he was all too prepared to let his fists fly and test the durability of her fancy ass ice armor. Bullet punches seemed like the best weapon in this instance - he didn't intend on playing defense this whole fight, and he'd probably need the extra speed to beat her to the punch.

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Thu Jan 11, 2018 8:45 pm

Nevi seemed to more or less ignore Solus’s pseudo plea for peace. She announced to the room that she’d grant mercy upon request with a tone that sounded so condescending that Solus was sure Krikka wouldn’t take the offer even if her life literally depended on it. The froslass followed up the announcement with an attack that shunted Solus across the floor away from her. If the raw force of the attack wasn’t enough, the biting cold brought with it a pain that overcame all the other aches he’d been experiencing just before it. When he eventually came to a stop, Solus found he could barely move. This paralysis-like experience wasn’t from pain, though.

Solus’s ability—Water Veil—protected him from burns, but was quite the opposite of helpful when faced with frigid, subzero air. His fur was frozen solid, making it difficult to move at all. To make matters even worse, he had instinctually closed his eyes when the blast of air hit him, thus rendered him temporarily blind. He wasn't sure where he or anyone else was in the room now, nor did he know the conditions his allies were in. He was effectively incapacitated. Although it wasn't likely he was going to be much help fighting Nevi in the first place, he was potentially a hindrance in this state. He tried to bring himself to a standing position but faltered, falling totally prone. Every movement brought with it both numb pain and the snapping of his frozen coat. He could feel the impact of small pieces of ice falling from above and landing on his back—Hail.

He had dramatically underestimated everything about Nevi. Whatever it was on the other side of that door was apparently so dangerous that the froslass was willing to destroy her new friends to keep them away from it. Solus was tired, he was hurt and, in all honesty, he had just wanted to leave the Chateau before things could get any worse. But now that Nevi was the only thing standing between them and their goal, all Solus wanted to do was beat the annoying and stubborn ghost to the ground so they could finish their mission. The pain of the cold served as encouragement to this goal. But Solus could barely move, couldn’t see, and even if he could he didn’t have an effective means of attack. One problem at a time... He began to flex parts of his body in an effort to regain some movement.

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Wed Jan 17, 2018 12:13 am

It didn't take Nevi long to notice the croagunk's movements; despite her focus on Krikka, she had her attention well-divided.  However, rather than react immediately with an attack, she simply ignored him and kept her arm outstretched toward the umbreon.  She waited until nearly the last second to respond to the oncoming hit, but she was soon forced to release her primary target to do so.  The falling hail began to swirl around her, creating a haze of ice that served to partially obscure her figure from view.  She glanced toward the oncoming croagunk before thrusting herself backward through the air, sidestepping him just as he neared and leaving him to run right through the whirling collection of hail.

Fortunately, Krikka was left with respite in the abrupt interruption of the froslass' attack.  It took a moment for the pain to die down enough for her muscles to start responding to her, but when she could finally move, the ice around her began cracking almost instantly.  The glaze over her frozen coat practically crumbled when the thicker portions of ice on her body suddenly shattered.  She huffed and threw herself up off the ground in ignorance of whatever damage may have been done to her.  She was annoyed, certainly, but for once she wasn't going to let it get the best of her.  Her aura flickered back to life and an emission of darkness blasted out from her the second she locked onto the foe, this one taking up a smaller area to ensure she didn't hit Goro by accident.  Her body blazed with this foreboding blackness, complimenting her infuriated demeanor.  This attack was fueled by her own negativity, and at the moment, she had more than enough of that to fuel it.

An unattentive Nevi failed to notice this, too distracted by the croagunk she had been faced with.  "Please, stop!" her voice took on an ethereal echo as she pleaded for him to surrender, and somehow, she managed to appear even more pathetic than before.  "You don't want to fight me.  You want to help me-"  The sudden blast of darkness struck her mid-sentence, this one knocking her back against the wall and sending cracks through her armor.  Still mostly unfazed, she pulled her arms in toward herself in preparation to loose another wave of wind and blow away the lingering aftermath of the dark pulse.  Her reaction time was fast, but not fast enough.

Krikka didn't miss a beat; now that her fur was mostly freed, it was already practically soaked in poison, and without hesitation she spun and flung a spray of the fluid from her tail at the froslass.  This attack was let out in a wider arc since she didn't have to worry about it hurting Goro, and it hit the intended target dead-on.  Most of the poison froze on contact with Nevi's armor, but with its damaged state there was some that managed to get through.  The unexpected spritzing made her hesitate in confusion, and before she could even realize what happened, Krikka sent another dark shockwave her way.  Still masked in the lingering energy from the last, the froslass failed to register the oncoming followup and was left with her guard down as it smacked into her.  There was the distinct sound of ice shattering from within the dusky cloud.

Without waiting for the haze to clear so she could see the damage, Krikka suddenly grabbed her bag by the strap and spun, whipping it toward Solus before releasing and sending it flying in his direction.  He was frozen and she could see that, so she hoped the impact would help break him free without hurting him too much.  Beyond that, she actually wanted him to hold onto the bag so he could make himself useful; she needed to focus on actually fighting while he needed some way to contribute.  "Solus, use whatever you see fit!" she spoke before snapping back to the doorway shrouded in darkness.  Visibility slowly returned to reveal... nothing.  There were broken bits of ice spread across the floor in the area, but no signs of the froslass.  The hail was beginning to restrict Krikka's sight - her species was built to see in the dark, not blizzards - but she could still see the environment clearly enough to note the distinct lack of an opponent to fight.  She absently stepped back, assuming it to be some kind of trick... and she was right.

Unfortunately, beyond that, Krikka's ability to foresee what would happen next was sorely lacking.  She gasped in surprise as Nevi suddenly flew through the floor below, slamming into her underbelly hard enough to take her breath away.  She was knocked off the ground and felt the froslass' arms wrap around her, carrying her further into the air, twirling her around and pulling her in close.  She was reminded of her initial meeting with the creature, but this was a bit different in that she was now actually being attacked.  Just like before, she instinctively pushed her paws against the froslass in an attempt to free herself, but the foe's vice-grip around her was more than she could fight against.  She turned her head to the left to avoid butting heads with the froslass as she was pulled in closer, and much to her dismay, she felt the thing's lips press against her right cheek.  For a moment she was stunned and silent, wide-eyed at the unexpected... gesture.  She felt a stinging sensation in the side of her face followed by a building weakness in the rest of her body, then she knew.

Krikka's energy was being sapped away, and she was too surprised and flustered by the means of attack to react.  Nevi's armor was gone, but the idea of attacking was lost on Krikka, at least for the moment.


Ability: Snow Cloak
Hail | Ice Shard | Blizzard | Hex | Attract | Draining Kiss

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Wed Feb 07, 2018 11:03 pm

Goro's budding curiosity and fond feelings for Nevi didn't conflict at all with his current objective of breaking her face. If anything, they made him want to attack her even more. He'd thought her interesting once they talked a little, once it became apparent that she was different from the rest of the malicious and mischevious ghosts of the Ruined Chateau. While she did ambush them, she made no attempt to hurt them. Instead, she was very eager to help the group of travelers that she had happened upon, and as she guided them down the passageway to their destination, he was surprised at how easy it was to talk to her, and the fact that he wanted to. And that was before she revealed her strength, before she stood up against Krikka and him and Solus, before she swept them all aside with a swish of her arms. Within seconds she had made it apparent that she was a great deal stronger than all of them, perhaps even combined. The wickedly dangerous icy armor adorning her, the fierce hail sweeping through the room crashing against his skin, and the force of her attacks all spoke to how truly strong she was. And when he found something strong, his first instinct and greatest desire was to throw himself against it; to measure himself against his enemy and find out which one of them was badder.

It was obvious here that Nevi was on a completely different level. Even the apathetic manner in which she ignored his charge and kept her focus on Krikka spoke to that. But in this situation, he didn't need to match her; only distract her. Fortunately, as he drew near her, almost within striking range, she finally diverted her attention from his leader unto him. Unfortunately, he didn't exactly get a good look at what she was doing next; the hails swirling about the room intensified, focusing in front of him and blocking his pathway. If this was to act as some sort of deterrent, then this frosty bitch had another thing coming. Goro only grew irritated at the misty wall that was supposedly meant to stall his attacks, and instead of halting his charge or tread carefully around this new development, he threw himself into the hailing swirls with all the more enthusiasm. Fists hardened into steel shot forward at incredible speeds, flying indiscriminately at where he had last glimpsed Nevi floating, the croagunk entirely unaware of how she had simply flown backward a ways away from him. But they met with naught but air, and Goro was suddenly struck with a feeling of confusion and cold and pain. The swirling hails that she had concealed herself with were now punishing him for his reckless charge, bits of hard ice slamming into him, bruising and tearing leathery skin.

It wasn't much compared to the blizzard she had hit him with before, but where that had been overwhelming force, this was constant pain. He had the presence of mind to stumble blindly out of the swirling hails, but to make matters worse, Nevi was suddenly pleading. His lip was just about to curl in distaste before her words registered to him, the ethereal and otherworldly tone behind her voice escaping his notice. He heard her voice echoing through him, rebounding through his skull, sounding elegant and pitiable and why was he trying to hurt her, again? Flashes of Nevi's image appeared in his mind's eye, and it struck him how beautiful and lovable she really was - what kind of monster would fight against someone like that? Nevi had done everything she could to help him and the fucks he was with - she'd guided them here, she'd driven off their attacker and saved them from a disastrous situation when Krikka overstepped her boundaries again.

He looked up stupidly from where he had staggered out of her cloud of hail, taking in her wickedly sharp armor and refined voice. The spell was broken when a dark shockwave blasted Nevi from out of nowhere, sending her hurtling into the wall behind her and splintering her armor. Another followed, cutting through the smoky aftermath of the first, resulting in an explosion of dark matter seasoned with the satisfying sound of ice cracking. The thought of rushing into the smoky cloud and striking while Nevi was weakened occurred to him for only a moment before he ruthlessly discarding it, feeling only curdling shame at such a barbaric thought. She needed to be protected, not harmed... but Krikka was his ally, right now. Wasn't she? His confusion only intensified as the smoke cleared and Nevi was nowhere to be found. But a split second later, he heard a sharp gasp resound through the air. The croagunk spun on his heel to take in the sight of his leader, but either the blizzard was playing tricks on him or she wasn't there. Amphibian eyes narrowed and searched for the umbreon, stopping only once he caught vague movement above where she'd been. In a dark mirror of the first time Nevi had ambushed them, she'd scooped Krikka up from the floor again and this time she was out to hurt. Or... kiss. Goro felt a curious mix of petulant anger and mystification swell up within him at the sight of Nevi smooching Krikka while they were floating in the air, but considering how Krikka wasn't immediately screaming bloody murder and retaliating, there was something fishy going on.

"Hey! Quit runnin' and fight me fair n' square!" Infatuation was something Goro had dealt with before, in hindsight. Memories of a chaotic morning playing in the swamps with a skitty and an igglybuff had given him experience with this sort of mind spell. He was just able to power through his growing feelings of admiration for Nevi to scream up at her, his own voice taking on a dark, haunting tone with all the unspoken undercurrents of a challenge running through his voice. It was just as unnatural a thing as Nevi's pleads, but this was something darker -  an unmistakable taunt. Judging from his track record against the floating ghost lady, it probably wasn't the best idea to divert her attention from Krikka again, but what choice was there? Still, there was no harm in caution. As he snarled up at the floating ghost currently laying lips on his win condition, he squared himself and lifted two, steel-hardened fists in an obvious challenge. "Down here, where I can reach you!"

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Fri Feb 09, 2018 3:38 am

Solus had just begun to regain some movement in his tails and fingers when he felt something collide into his side, knocking him over slightly. Based on the weight behind it he could tell it was neither of his allies, nor was it Nevi, so he knew it had to be some inanimate object. Not a moment later he hard Krikka shouting to him—álbiet muffled from the sounds of the room and the ice covering him—and he knew immediately what it was. Solus rose to a kneeling position. Moving was a little easier now as the impact of the bag did indeed manage to break some of the ice. He spent a few moments tending to the ice which still restricted vital movements, such as opening his eyes. It would help to be able to see.

Once he was able to properly take in his surroundings again, Solus quickly came to the conclusion that they were losing this fight against Nevi. Krikka had likely gotten some hits in based on what he’d felt and heard, but Nevi was quite clearly still up. Looking over at He found the ghost in the same place he found Krikka and was momentarily confused by what she said. He decided to assume that ghosts just had some messed up ways of attacking. He turned to look to Goro when he heard the croagunk challenging Nevi, attempting to provoke her into fighting him instead of doing whatever it was she was currently doing to Krikka. Solus suspected that Goro and Nevi hadn’t actually made much headway in harming each other and that that was intentional.

Wasting no more time, Solus started browsing through Krikka’s bag. There were several items of note—and he noted them—but four items, in particular, caught his attention. There was a TM—an item he knew of and had the vaguest of understanding of. Knowing a new move would potentially be helpful. Knowing what move would be granted to him, or how exactly to use it, would also be helpful. He set it aside and picked up the other three items—two gold thorns in one and a poison thorn in the other. He recognized all three. The poison thorn was from Venen and only helped to bring back fairly recent and quite unpleasant memories. The gold thorns were practically identical. One of them had been used to open a watmel berry back in Venen Gulch. That same thorn might have been used to cut open his friend Xeno, too. It was always possible that it was the other one, though. This reminded him of something, and he frantically searched the bag once more; this time for something specific.

He failed to find Xeno’s necklace in the bag. He didn’t even know what he’d have done if he had. Stealing from Krikka—even if it technically wasn’t stealing probably wouldn’t go well for him considering he’d still be stuck with her for a while after this fight before he could even attempt to make a break for it. On top of that, he wasn’t sure returning to Xeno was even a good idea at this point anyhow. There was the risk that Krikka may decide to track them both down and get revenge. And besides that, Solus was starting to see some potential personal benefits by sticking with Krikka—contractual obligation or no. Recent events were really starting to get to him. The beginnings of a goal had begun to form in his head, but he knew he’d have to deal with his current situation first, which meant dealing with Nevi. Solus dropped the two gold thorns back into the bag and picked the TM up once again. He still held the poison thorn in his other hand. He examined the TM further in hopes of figuring the thing out.

He was still freezing, and the numbing cold caused him to fumble and drop both the items he was holding. “F-fuck th-this…” he grumbled as he picked the poison thorn back up. The TM, being quite flat, gave him trouble in picking it up. “Come on you, I need you t-to do something f-f-for me, h-here. You’re gonna t-teach me a new move, then we’re g-going to beat Nevi for g-getting in the way, and then we’re summoning an evil god or s-something.” He managed to finally get a grip on the TM and lifted it back up to his face. “Then we’re getting out of here, and I’m going to get some f-f-fucking answers from some people.” A resurgence of emotion sprung up within Solus. Primarily anger, but something else, too. And behind all that, another feeling—something completely different and new.

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Sat Feb 10, 2018 3:24 am

Krikka's body was beginning to tingle unpleasantly, but from what, she could hardly care.  It was probably the hail or the violating attack or both, but she simply couldn't bring herself to care about what her body was being put through... even as the sensation slowly turned from an uncomfortable feeling of pins and needles to legitimate pain.  Her muscles weakened and her body grew limp, but the froslass wrapped an arm around her neck to hold her head up and continue sucking the life out of her through her face.  Pinkish flickers of luminescence began pulsing through her form toward the point of contact and she felt her eyes grow heavy.  She knew her foe was right in front of her, exposed and vulnerable, yet she couldn't seem to break free from the trapping sensation.  It wasn't even as if she was about to faint so much as just pass out from exhaustion, like she was being strained more than hurt.  It no doubt hurt, but it felt like her strength was being sapped away, and she could make a pretty good guess as to why.

Goro's voice pierced the air, and suddenly the support under the umbreon's neck was gone, leaving her head to fall limply.  Eyes barely open, she struggled to find something to focus on in the whirling white around her.  Her body was still being held close to the froslass, which she probably should have been thankful for since it meant she wasn't being dropped to the floor below, but it also meant she was still at the mercy of the enemy.  She heard Goro's voice once more, this time more clearly perceived; he was antagonizing the creature assaulting her, trying to draw its attention away to give her some breathing room, but how could she respond?  She needed to do something while she had the chance; her body's vitality was already returning, but she still felt too weak to loose her darkness despite how good a position she was in to do so.  Contrary to the cold biting at her fur, her pores began to secrete a liquid as if sweating from some perceived heat.  She was not sweating, however; she was doing what her species did best.

The spirit holding the umbreon paused and slowly lifted gaze toward the croagunk in display of a bitter glare.  The arm propping her victim's limp head up slid out from under the black fur and down to her side, a familiar ghostly essence materializing in her hand.  Upon the bold little frog's second challenge, she opened her mouth and spoke.

"I'm not stupid enough to-"

Nevi's eyes widened and her words fell to silence as the umbreon in her grasp suddenly sprang to life and lunged forward, biting down on her free arm.  For but a moment she was stunned and silent before throwing her seized left arm out behind her and spinning with an annoyed huff, hoping to throw the umbreon off of her.  Krikka held tight as she could, wrapping her front legs around the body of the ghost and biting down as hard as she could.  A guttural growl conveying something somewhere between hate and struggle escaped her, matched by the froslass with one of her own.  Unable to shake the vixen off, Nevi used her momentum to throw her arm up into the air, again failing to free her; but this time she had a different plan.  She suddenly bolted down to the floor, dragging Krikka along behind her and phasing through the ground.

Krikka could feel the material of the ghostly body fading away in her maw before a very different feeling replaced it in the forefront of her mind.  Eyes having clamped shut amid the struggle, she had no idea what was about to happen until she was overwhelmed by the force of the cold floor slamming against her.  She hit the ground at a bit of an angle with her left cheek slamming flat against the surface, followed by the rest of her body.  A metallic taste in her mouth and throbbing pain in her head took precedence over any semblance of coherent thought as she lay in a daze.  Fortunately, there was something far more driving within her than anything so simple as consciousness, something that guided her to move when she couldn't even think of a reason why.  She found herself cut off from all crucial senses including those of sight, hearing and balance, but she'd be damned before she would forfeit her right to move.  She rolled onto her belly and put her weight on her legs only to have a pain in her left shoulder pierce through the guiding veil over her mind and drop her back to the ground.

It didn't matter anyway.  Nevi made her next appearance mere seconds after diving into the obscurity of the chateau; she emerged silently behind the croagunk, eyes locked onto his figure, arms draped purposefully at her sides.  Layers of ice flash-froze over her hands to form claw-like gauntlets, followed by a spinning motion to the left whilst throwing her right arm out to the side.  Her outstretched hand cut through the wind and hail as she pulled it around and swung toward the croagunk, carrying the blade-like claws toward the side of his head with the merciless force of her momentum.  An intervention from Krikka would have done nothing to prevent this; Goro was positioned between the two, and besides, she wasn't fast enough in the first place.  Nevi knew she wasn't.

A heavy breath made its way through Krikka's throat and manifested as a messy gurgle.  Her eyelids drifted open just enough to bring sight, leaving her with a groggy, almost disheartened look on her face.  She stumbled up to a standing position, this time ignoring the stabbing pain in her shoulder, and lifted her head in an unsteady motion.  There was saliva pooling in her mouth and running down her throat causing a weak and bubbly sound with her every breath.  She spat in an attempt to relieve the agitation and beheld a splatter of red between her paws.  There were similar stains of rosey fluid on the ground where head previously lay with more drizzling from her mouth as she stared down at the vividly painted picture of her condition.  It took her a moment to realize her mouth was open and she was drooling blood.  It was all she could focus on, and it should have been cause for alarm.

But it just pissed her off.

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Mon Feb 12, 2018 5:33 am

Goro really ought to have known better than to ask her to come down and face him. The croagunk watched in equal parts morbid fascination, secondhand satisfaction, and budding horror as Nevi responded to Krikka's wild thrashing by simply throwing her up in the air and bolting down toward the floor, bringing along the umbreon for a truly impressive facelift. It was brutal enough that even he stepped back in surprise, eyes widening as the ramifications of Krikka being presumably out of the fight began to sink in. That was the hardest hit he'd ever seen her take - fuck, she wasn't even moving. It only dawned on the poison fighting hybrid that Nevi was still out and about when he caught himself shivering, the coldness of the hailstorm and earlier blizzard infiltrating him bone-deep.

His every limb was shaking - his now constantly chattering jaw included. He'd never done well in the cold before and this was about as cold as he could ever remember being. His skin was bruised and torn and bloody in various spots from getting tricked into that damn little mini-hurricane of hail, to say nothing of the constant ache and strain that was present throughout him after her first blizzard. This bitch was damn strong, and she'd just demonstrated that for them all to see. Still, it would have been remiss of him to quail or call it quits. He wanted this as much as Krikka did; he'd looked forward to it until... until that. So Goro hunkered in on himself, lowering his center of gravity and brandishing his fists, keeping a wary eye for movement in his field of vision - currently focused on the general floor below him. Because holy hell, the ghosts around here sure were fond of that tactic, and Nevi didn't seem to be an exception.

It was only natural that he was caught completely flat-footed when a diamond-hard, chilling cold force slammed into the right side of his head with all the subtlety and grace of a horde of stampeding tauros. Unbeknownst to him, a shocked and pained grunt crept out of him as his body was sent reeling hard to the side, feet falling out from beneath him. The croagunk was dropped like a sack of potatoes, landing hard on his side with a dull thud, his cry of surprise dying out into an agonized wheeze. Instinctively, his right hand shot up to cradle the damaged area, and he duly noted dipping his fingers into something... wet. This doesn't seem right, His world had exploded into a cacophony of force and harshness and pain, and he had to wonder why the room was suddenly flipped over on its side. Was he still fighting? And where had Nevi gotten off to? My fingers are warm... but I'm so cold. Absently, he rolled over onto his back, staring up at the ceiling with an expression that was helplessly confused and pained. Nevi was standing above him.

He smiled widely. Even when he pulled his hand back from his head and rubbed wet fingers together, taking note of the redness that stained them, his spirits soared higher now that Nevi was with him. She really was gorgeous in this light - and damn, she'd replaced her armor with some wicked looking gauntlets. The view down here was nice, and he wouldn't have minded staring up at her some more like this, but it was so fucking cold and his head hurting and wet. Getting up would... probably not fix that, but it was step one. "What the fuck was that," It was a statement, not a question, though his incredibly soft, quiet, and confused tone of voice might leave one wondering. To make matters worse, his body wouldn't respond well to the commands he gave it - trying to rise up only sent lances of pain searing down through him, and his head wouldn't stop aching. His arms would rise, though, and he thoughtlessly extended his right one up toward Nevi, the implications of the action clear. "Can you... ?"

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:21 am

Evolution is most definitely a strange sensation, one certainly diminished by the numerous ailments that Solus was suffering in the moment, not the least of which was a recent concussion and the numbing pain of the cold that Solus was exposed to. Though, perhaps these were just the right conditions necessary for this peculiar phenomenon to occur. Evolution was something Solus didn’t understand—something he doubted many truly understood—and something he rarely gave thought too. The fact that he would one day evolve and become something more like his father, a floatzel, was never something he had considered. In reflection, he realized that he always sort of considered inevitable. He didn’t know of any way to prevent it, or if it was even preventable at all. Just the same, he never really gave much thought to what exactly would provoke this change, either. Perhaps other Pokémon think about it more often; Some who anticipate or dread it. Some species have a choice—or at least a potential variance—in how they evolve. Solus wasn’t one of those.

Solus was more or less indifferent to the whole thing. He could see the inherent benefits—an increase in inherent strength and ability being the primary benefit—as well as he could see the potential, perceived cons—he knew his reflection would always remind him, to at least some degree, of his father. But, as a whole, at this very moment—a moment so significant that he will never again experience in his entire life—he couldn't care less about the whole thing. He made note of the strange sensation of suddenly being quite different from himself only moments ago. He couldn’t deny the surreal feeling of being instinctually familiar with a form he had only a third person reference for before this very moment. Still, these experiences received nothing more than the briefest of absent-minded thoughts. In the time he had spent rifling through Krika’s bag, fumbling about with the TM (which was suddenly different now, as if he’d used it unwittingly), and unexpectedly evolving, Nevi had apparently finished what she was doing with Krikka and moved on to Goro.

This surprised him somewhat, as he’d honestly expected the two—Goro and Nevi—to go easy on each other. However, based on the state and stance Goro was in, that was clearly untrue. It looked as though both Goro and Krikka were in a state not too dissimilar to how Solus was earlier. Solus could help but wonder if Nevi had something to do with his own injury. It didn’t quite make sense, based on what memories he did have, but his understanding of ghosts helped to add some credibility to that possibility. He wondered if the froslass really know what she was doing. Both Krikka and Goro’s injuries seemed fairly severe—what if Nevi messed, took it too far? What if she ended up killing one of them? Was she really willing to do that to stop them from getting through those doors? Is what’s behind those doors justification enough to do so? Would she even really feel bad about it?

Dropping the used TM to the floor, Solus crossed his arms, hiding the poison thorn between his arms and his chest. Maybe not the best thing to do with a poisoned weapon, but a little poison was the least of his concerns at this point. He was shivering; this justified his crossed arm posture but it wasn’t an act—he was still freezing. He began to approach Nevi, moving slowly in an effort to demonstrate that he meant no harm and to keep his footing on the icy floor. “You’re g-going to end up k-killing them at this rate,” he stuttered. He’d given up on trying to overcome the stuttering practically instantly. It was literally freezing, and it that was Nevi’s fault. If anything, the stutter might help him garner some pity from the spirit. “They’re both so st-stubborn that might b-b-be your only option. What’s behind those d-doors, exactly, that’s going to end the world?” Solus kept up his approach as he spoke. He made sure to try to meet Nevi’s eyes as he continued. “And if you’re k-keeping us out, does that make you the g-good guy? A-and if you do end up killing one of them…” Solus paused to gather all his will for the next statement. He wanted to be sure that this one was as clear as possible, free of shivering or stuttering. “WIll you feel guilty? Or will being the good guy justify you?” The tone Solus used to ask this final question was the most serious he may have ever spoken with in his life. Regardless of whether or not this string of questions was part of a ploy or not—and it was—Solus was truly, personally interested in hearing Nevi’s answer. It was a question he himself refused to consider out of fear.

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Thu Feb 15, 2018 9:12 am

Nevi swung her hand unforgivingly into the croagunk's head, shattering the gauntlet of ice from the force of the blow.  She clearly regretted her actions almost immediately, recoiling at the victim's display of frailty.  She watched in indecision as he struggled to get up before giving up and requesting her assistance, and for a moment she simply stared.  Keeping the remaining gauntlet held close to her, she reached out her much less dangerous hand to pick the croagunk up.  "I'm sorry," she muttered, unable to get much further before another voice made her freeze.  She looked up to see who it was speaking in such an unthreatening tone and was visibly surprised to see the buizel she'd put down prior, but... bigger.  The whole thing was enough to leave her speechlessly listening to him, though she wouldn't have done anything to interrupt him anyway.  When the now-floatzel was finally finished, there was a delay in any response from the froslass as she stared blankly at him.  Her face turned to a look of remorse as her gaze fell down to the croagunk below her, and she grabbed onto his hand to pull him up.

"I'm not going to kill anyone.  I'm just trying to stop you from-" she spoke in shaky words dripping with uncertainty before interrupting herself as if to regain her composure and collect her thoughts.  "There are things locked in this house with power you can't imagine.  Even if the thing you're trying to wake up doesn't just kill you, it-" she was interrupted once more, this time not of her own will.  She barely managed to catch a glimpse of darkness in her peripheral before it came crashing into her right side, nearly knocking her to the ground.  While she remained afloat, her eyes were shut tight and her arms rushed up in a blocking motion in anticipation of a followup attack from the same direction.  She was forced to release the croagunk from her grasp, but she had already pulled him almost to his feet.

Krikka's eyes locked onto the froslass hovering over Goro, but before she could do anything more, she noticed something that demanded her full attention.  Someone approached the foe, someone she didn't recognize as one of her allies, and it took her a moment to realize who it was.  Her eyes widened at the sight of not a buizel, but a floatzel; Solus had evolved in the middle of this fight.  She would have preferred to see him evolve in the middle of doing something badass, but she wasn't complaining about the added power against such a dangerous enemy.  She had greatly underestimated Nevi and assumed her to be nothing more than a pacifistic nuisance.  It made her mad to be so wrong, yet she found herself with a confident smile on her face in spite of it all.  She was thrilled to see her pet having evolved, and more importantly, the naive little ghost was standing right in striking range of both Solus and Goro with her guard lowered.

Shade draped itself over the umbreon's figure as she turned her head to the right and spat once more.  Her mouth stung and... actually, her whole head was throbbing and she could feel the burn of fresh wounds on her face as well.  She could hear Solus trying to make casual conversation, and she could see Goro asking for help of the ground, which implied both of them had given up on fighting but it was obviously just a facade.  Right?  She hadn't actually considered the possibility of one of them deserting her in the middle of an important fight, but the possibility was very real and she was only just beginning to realize it.  Goro seemed to like the froslass, but Solus...  Surely, Solus wouldn't abandon her, let alone at this specific time.  She knew he liked to fight with underhanded tactics and had no problem trying to talk his way out of things, so... surely... he was just trying to play the opponent.  Krikka hadn't taken any time to really consider the idea of having Solus choose someone else over her in such a way, but the thought of it made her... mad?  A lot of things made her mad, but it didn't feel quite the same.  The black aura surrounding her intensified in tune with her emotions, leeching off her anger.

Without even a conscious thought, Krikka loosed a pulse that ripped its way through the air and into the foe; she wasn't worried about hitting Solus, but she should have been a bit concerned for Goro, wh was literally right next to the target.  Alas, she couldn't just let such an opportunity for a free hit slip away out of fear of hurting one of her allies, and she was acting a bit too impulsively to consider such a factor in the first place.  Any potential concern for Goro's well-being was overshadowed when the pulse struck the inattentive froslass, lowering her guard even further and leaving her stunned in the moment by the overbearing negativity.  Krikka couldn't do much more than that with her weary body still struggling to recover, but her hope was that it would give the much closer croagunk and floatzel a chance to strike... and that they were still on her side.

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:07 pm

Relief and gratitude spread through him as he saw Nevi reach down and grasp his arm with hers, - the one that didn't have an icy gauntlet adorning it - pulling him up to his shaky feet. It took considerable effort on his part not to tumble right back down. He felt strangely lightheaded, and dimly he thought it might have something to do with the warm wetness trailing down his head and dripping down his neck. He didn't quite manage to keep from stumbling, though, veering off slightly to the side while Nevi turned to address a fuzzy mass of orange and yellow in his peripheral - Solus. I got hit, he realized. His hand reached up to press firmly against the right side of his head, and when he drew it back it was covered in his own lifeblood. Something had got him, and got him good, but who? Solus and Krikka were on his side right now; he'd come with them at Krikka's request, and he was helping them do... something. They were close to their goal, he remembered. But Nevi had stood up to them, pleaded for them to stop, and a fight had broken out. Was it her? She'd summoned a hailstorm, and it was still raging around them. The froslass had blown them back with just a motion of her arms and a wave of icy force. He'd rushed at her so Krikka could break the ice freezing her in place, and she'd then gone on to juke him out and introduce Krikka's face to the floor afterward.

That didn't sound right, though. They'd gotten on well so far, especially when they took a break while Solus and Krikka did god-knows-what in that other room. What reason would she have for hitting him like that? Goro turned to study Nevi intently, his eyes narrowing even as he shivered. She only had one gauntlet on, and now that he truly looked at her, the one naked arm of hers was covered in shards and bits of broken ice. And his head was throbbing, bleeding, and aching with a deep pain. She had done it. They were fighting, he realized. He and Nevi were opponents right now. But when he looked at her, he was overcome with admiration and delight. The last thing he wanted to do right now was hurt her - even... even if her strength interested him just as much as the rest of her. Thinking about this was hurting his head almost as much as she had. Something was wrong with him, and he couldn't for the life of him figure out what.

Thankfully, he was distracted when another pulse of dark energy came hurtling toward them all. Or, more specifically, him and Nevi. It was aimed at the froslass, of course, but his proximity to the attack was worrying. He didn't have the energy or the forethought to move, and when the super-effective attack exploded into Nevi, he was pushed back from the force of it. His legs got stuck on themselves, and he stumbled backward drunkenly onto his ass, unable to do anything but stare up at the image of Nevi frozen in a swirling miasma of dark matter. A wave of sympathy came rushing up through him, but something in his head ruthlessly suppressed it - a piece of the puzzle had just come together, alongside Krikka's attack. It reminded him of what they were doing here. He'd been fighting Nevi before he got laid out, and even before that, his mind had been dominated by thoughts of her. She'd... She'd done something to him. He wasn't sure what, exactly, but he remembered feeling like this once before. Indignant rage suddenly erupted within the fighting-type, alongside realization.

It momentarily cleared the hazy pink fog clouding his mind. The croagunk was surging back up to his feet suddenly, the movement full of stress and pain, but he needed to contribute somehow while he still could. The froslass in front of him was shocked still, standing in front of him with her back turned to him, and the sight of it made him viciously gleeful. He couldn't land a hit on her while she was floating around in the air or blocked by focused hailstorms, but he sure as hell could reach her now. And he could make it count. "You did a mind trick on me!" Goro's left hand shot forward, his hand clenching onto one of Nevi's icy-horns tightly. At the same time, his right hand hovered at his hip, curled painfully tight. It instantaneously hardened, glowing intensely with a silvery-bright energy. In a single motion, his left hand pulled her back toward him, out of the swirling dark energy. Meanwhile, his right hand shot forward with all the strength he could put behind it, striking out in a vicious straight punch that crashed into the back of the ice-type's head, rocking it forward and sending her right back from whence she came - and a little bit further.

It wasn't his strongest attack or his most complex maneuver, but it was all he had been able to do during the short window his mind had cleared. With any luck, the momentum of the strike would open up the froslass for further punishment from one of his allies; Solus was nearby, he remembered, and it went unsaid that Krikka would take any opportunity to lay it to their mutual foe. It was her that he was counting on. She was his saving grace in this battle - with him up close doing his thing and her hanging back doing her thing, they'd at least put up a good fight.

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PostSubject: Re: Perception   Mon Feb 19, 2018 11:39 pm

The brief response Nevi managed to offer before she was cut off by a sudden attack from a still-functioning Krikka was unsatisfactory to Solus. For a brief moment he wanted to turn around to glare at the umbreon but the compulsion passed quite quickly. He knew demonstrating disagreement with her wouldn’t do him any good. He relieved his frustration by shrugging and exhaling instead. He was hoping that Nevi would have said something else. He wasn’t sure what kind of answer he wanted from her. He knew he didn’t really care about what secrets were kept locked up within the Chateau. He doubted he could be dissuaded even if Nevi had gone into proper, clear detail about what exactly it was they were trying to release. He wanted to see this whole thing through now, in part because he knew Krikka wouldn’t give up on her goal, nor would she be keen on letting either of her cohorts give up either. Another part of him just wanted to spite Nevi for being such a nuisance.

Solus unfolded his arms and twirled the poison thorn for a moment, studying the weapon. He watched as Goro followed up on Krikka’s attack, grasping the Ice- and Ghost-type’s head and jerking her into some kind of punching attack. The combination of attacks was almost too perfect. Krikka had put Nevi into a defensive position with her Dark Pulse, but that position provided no protection from an attack from the nearby croagunk she’d apparently slighted. As if like clockwork Goro’s attack left Nevi open for a second follow up. Solus was sure to seize the opportunity to strike. Holding the poison thorn as if he was going to shank someone, Solus rushed up to the froslass at an almost blinding speed. A Quick Attack would do little to bother Nevi, but the speed and force of that attack behind a poisonous spike? That would surely have some significant effect.

The moment Solus was sure his attack hadn’t been evaded, he left the poison thorn where it had been planted and dashed away from the froslass as quick as he came. He had no intentions of being anywhere near her if and when she retaliated. He quickly took stock of the situations as it was developing. Krikka was the farthest from anyone else, and she was closest to himself. Nevi was between himself and Goro—who was still the closest to Nevi. Krikka’s bag was a fair distance behind Solus, but he was hoping he wouldn’t need anything from it so soon. He had an attack that, while not very effective, would actually hit his opponent—or at least he was pretty sure he did. Nevi had to be on a decline now, given that she had surely been poisoned at this point. The thorn probably wouldn't be any help to her either so long as she left that where it was. Solus’s plan of attack was to simply evade until the froslass gave up. Perhaps not the most direct or effective means of dealing with your opponent, but it was one he found gave decent enough results.

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