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 Return of the King

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the sunset hero

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PostSubject: Return of the King   Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:52 am

Who the fuck had time for a day job when there were sick ass mountains to climb? Goro the croagunk sure didn't, that's for sure.

Well, no, he absolutely had time to work. But he'd also just got done putting in some serious overtime and it was time for some leave. Sure, he'd only gotten started, like, four or five weeks ago tops, but goddamn it, he'd done some serious stuff in that timeframe. Like get his butt whooped by his new boss, put up with two weeks' travel to and from a haunted house, kick some ghost ass, deal with a god (?), and came home to punch a demon in the face so hard that he broke his own hand. Seriously.

It hurt.

He was easily identifiable from other croagunks by the totally broken and misshapen left hand that he was very careful to keep still. On his right bicep was a blue ribbon stained suspiciously red, and held in his arm dangling over his right shoulder was a bindle. At first glance, he looked like a homeless vagrant down on his luck, which honestly wasn't too far from the truth. He was, in fact, a semi-homeless criminal enforcer who got bored and wandered a bit too far from home.

But this seemed like a pretty cool place to kill some time. Goro looked around him, taking in the misty air and mountainous terrain he was surrounded by. There wasn't any proper mountain trail - or if there was, he was way off the beaten path. The frog pokemon shrugged and continued on, ambling along with a carefree and leisurely air around him.

(29 - 16 = 13 energy)

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Sat Sep 08, 2018 4:32 am

Ice-blue eyes watched Goro's every step from a half-dead bush atop a nearby cliff. Inside that bush was a vulpine ball of whorled fluff, making a note of nearly every move the frog made as he went about whatever business he had on top of this mountain. This Zorua had been busying himself in this manner rather actively since his return from the frozen wasteland, catching himself up with everything he had missed. His efforts had been concentrated on infiltrating the guild for a time. Thanks to the swap shop, it was a central location that attracted all kinds. He found it very convenient to collect tabs there, both on the people he had known and those who had moved in during his absence. There were still no signs of his former teammates, no matter how patiently he waited. He had grown more or less indifferent to that fact. In fact, in recent times he had grown tired of the guild altogether. He could acutely feel how hollow his life was nowadays when he hung around in the biggest ghost of his lost past. As much as he tried to distract himself from the fact, he had nothing. There wasn't a trace of his past life left, and every second he spent simply observing everything transpiring there actually served to make him grow more hollow. As much as he tried to dismiss it, he was growing frustrated with constantly playing the role of the nameless chameleon. He wanted to actually have a life again. He wanted the place that had been taken from him back. Or, maybe he wanted a new place. He wasn't sure.

In the midst of this indecisiveness, he had turned to the vastly diversified outlaw board with the idea of finding some different kinds of contacts. He hadn't ever really had a reason to before, but now that he was emancipated and angsty the collection of complete strangers hanging there seemed a very interesting prospect. Shawn had picked one he knew he had never seen before - a wanted poster displaying a croagunk with a bounty of 500 poke. Goro, hmm? What exactly have you been doing?

Shawn soon found that that question was hard to answer completely. He began to snoop about various people who had claimed to have seen or met this criminal - there were sightings at a bar, and in a forest that Shawn knew hadn't been there before - but he never caught a glimpse of the man himself. He spoke undercover to a bug who mentioned meeting a croagunk who fit the description, but the only thing that he could get out of that talk was what kind of alcohol his man preferred. ...Possibly useful, but not exactly prime information. He eventually managed to collect a decent impression of the croagunk's general personality: he was brash, intimidating, and outwardly cold. It seemed under the right conditions he could be lukewarm towards a stranger, and maybe even amiable with either extreme luck, alcohol, or both.

...Maybe Shawn would take heed of that information from the bug after all. He decided to begin his search by purchasing a few flask's worth of the alcohol in Goro's favorite drinks. And that was where the trail began and ended for a while. Sightings of the criminal had lessened to nil seemingly without warning. No matter who he talked to or where he looked, Shawn could not catch a wiff of him for several weeks. Goro was busy, it seemed. This only made Shawn more eager to find him. He could be patient.

After many weeks, Shawn finally caught a lucky break. While re-tracing Goro's last-known steps in the Southeastern lands, Shawn actually caught a glimpse of Goro himself heading North. He finally found him. Shawn immediately began tailing him relentlessly. After two weeks of walking towards a destination unknown, they arrived at Black Mist Mountain.

Shawn almost relished seeing this place again. Mountains aren't known to change very much, and for the first time Shawn had the opportunity to experience some pleasent nostalgia. He had fond memories of searching for treasure here. He imagined that was what Goro was here for, as well. This was opportune for Shawn - that experience could no doubt prove to be a valuable incentive to Goro as the Zorua began establishing a connection.

Yes, on that topic... he had to come up with a strategy for this encounter. How was he going to present himself to the outlaw? He considered just going out as himself. He had never really used illusions frequently before this point in his life, and he did miss just being his own personality and interacting with people that way. It probably wouldn't have been a big deal to go out as himself when Goro had certainly never even met him before, and had no way of identifying him to others if Shawn didn't give Goro his real name. That required Shawn to come up with a brand-new name, however. He would also have to temper his personality around Goro as well to ensure that things didn't go poorly. Goro was a far stronger pokemon than Shawn was at this point, and the Zorua had a sneaking suspicion that his tendency to come off as narcissistic might send him into an early grave. No, it was best to stick with alternate personalities for the time being.

...Perhaps he should try to get cozy with the croagunk? When in doubt, flirting wasn't a bad option. It was a quick, easy way to form an interest and repour with someone - if he could make it work, that is. It was risky to accomplish without a solid idea of what made the frog tick. It was a reliable trick regardless of that though. People tend to like people who are likeable.

….also, it sounded fun. Shawn got a prick of interest in this idea that eventually flooded his mind with ideas. Once that had happened, he was pretty much decided.

Shawn's form began to shift behind the large cliff face, matrixing and disappearing as his normal visage was replaced with that of a Bisharp with a bandana tied around it's head. He crafted the illusion to be as visually attractive as he could make it without blowing the whole thing out of proportion. ...On second thought, probably best to go with the "rough" kind of attractive. Strong build, scuffed/scarred metal. Broken blade on the back of the head. Kind of a kindred spirit to a croagunk with a cripple hand. Shawn had encountered the younger version of the species in the old Grassviel Dojo, and if stuck out in his brain as the most androgynously attractive human-shape species that Shawn had in his current arsenal of forms. Without knowing exactly what Goro found attractive, Shawn was shooting in the dark. He wanted to leave himself the most opportunities possible, so he decided to commit to the equally androgynous name of "Beryl" in order to ensure that he excluded no option. The personality... well, the simpler option of "sweet and innocent" wouldn't exactly mesh well with these looks. He imagined charismatic but dull might also serve to install a sense of kinship in his target. ...Shawn ultimately decided to start simple and test the waters. He quickly cleared his thrat and tried to develop an androgynous-sounding voice before the outlaw was within earshot. "Errahem, hrrrm... Pretty birdies- - ugh - Pretty- hrrr-rrrmmm, Pretty Birdies." Yeah, that would work.

He formulated a quick, rough backstory in his head, and then he was ready. Goro was close. The last thing Shawn did was reach out with the psionic abilities he was developing and grab some moderately-sized rocks from nearby.

"Beryl" began walking down the road casually. Not too quickly, not too slowly. They looked rather contented, and generally unaware that they were headed straight for another traveler on the road. In their "hand" they held a "note," and they seemed engrossed in reading it as they made their way down the street. They were clearly looking for something, and it had their full attention. They began to murmur to themselves as the croagunk became visible at the other end of the road; vision still trained to the note unflinchingly. "Where in this damn hill... god damn that stiff..."

As Goro was just within a few inches of the Bisharp, they looked up suddenly and jumped back a few paces. They appeared to be startled, as if they had been completely oblivious to Goro before he enetered their peripheral vision. Their body language was clearly defensive for a moment, but relaxed as soon as they had registered that the croagunk wasn't an expected threat. Their face relaxed into a pretty chill and amiable resting expression as they waved at the stranger.

"Mornin; sorry. Gave me a bit of a start there," Beryl mused as he stepped out of the croagunk's way. They began to resume their own business and continue walking, but it seemed another thought occurred and stopped them part way. They turned to Goro with a pensive look on their face, as if in thought. "Actually... Could I ask you something? You haven't happened to see a Marrowak hanging around these parts anywhere, have you? Kinda heavy-looking, probably loitering around with some Mightyena or a Lairon."

Shawn the Zorua - 4 energy

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Å͙͍̳̣͙͕̎b̵͉͔̺̱͍̹̼̋̈a̧̯̱͓̝̰n̟̖̈́ͯd̡̫͇̤̙̹̻̈õ̶͙̆́ͨ̀̃ͥn̟̖̪͍̤̋ͅ ̜̦̠̔̾á̛͖͎̥͎̭͑̽ļ̭͎͙͕̗̽ͯ̅l̩ ̢͖̲͎̤̲ͤͭ̈͛̑̃ḧͩͦ̆ͣ͏̤̭̱̳̮o̫̦̱͇͂ͨp̴̱eͥ̐̍͛ͥ,͍͔̼̜̜͇ ̙͙͂ͪ̇ͭ̎͝y̴̬̒͌͑ͅe̹̟͍͓ ̥̈́͜w͈̝̞̦̘͖̯͗ͤ̊̿ͣ͒ḧ̨͂͊̅̆o̫̜̰ͣ̅̎̊̈̍́ ̴̠̺ͩ͆ͫͣͭͤ̓ͅe̡̳̩̟͓ñ̥̥̹̜t͔̩̜̃ͦ̋ͣė͙̳̯̣̼̈́ͅr̿̓́ ̈͑҉̫̘̠̱͎̰T̵̘̘̗̺͓͍̦ͤ̒̇ͮH̰̺̰̲̦̖͖͚́̄ͮ̋͝Ệ̫͕͂͝ ̢̹͔͖̗̟̣̬͖̔ͯ̑̽C̫̯͓̥͎͌̓ͬ́ͤ͋̾ͭ̚̕͝Ű̮̟̖̝͙̉ͬ̇R̰̣̰͐͛̀̾̂̊͂̚͢͟͞Ṛ̻̟̱̥̗͎̜̓̊͑̄̊͢E̢̖̬̫̤ͦ̇́͑̓̍̎N̵̮̺̬̣͇͚ͧ̅̀͞T͕̹͕͓̝͕̀ͧͭͤ̍ͪ͟ ̱͍̬̘̖̄ͯͬ͑͊ͣͥͦ͘͢͢P̢͓͓͕̦͎̝̮͛ͪͅL̢̬͔͚̦͚̮̒̆͗͛O̸̧̟̻̞ͣ͊ͮ̏T̺̻͖̲̞́ͬ͐̒ͤ̿̀

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Sat Sep 08, 2018 5:26 am

Mountain hiking wasn't even Goro's thing, honestly. Back before he had a day job, he tended to spend most of his free time either laying around like a lazy bum or looking for things to beat up. But broadening his horizons was a venture that he was getting used to lately. Getting out of his comfort zone and experiencing new things was important - he'd heard that said somewhere before. And leaving the bog was definitely good for him. Maybe not physically, but there was no denying that he had gotten stronger since leaving, to say nothing of all the experience he'd accumulated. The things he'd seen and the opponents he'd scrapped with were proof enough of that.

Spending his time off going someplace new was just more of the same. He hadn't meant to come here specifically, but he had definitely been wandering in a new direction leaving Rainfront. There were probably pokemon on this mountain that he'd never seen or heard of. Learning how to handle them would be useful if he ever came back out here on business.

Case in point, this shiny metal looking motherfucker in the distance.

He'd never heard of a pokemon that looked like that before. Dark and sharp and hard - probably a steel type, since he was metal. Goro didn't slow down his pace or alter his path at all when he caught sight of the figure. The croagunk just kept on, looking outwardly unaffected by the new presence, though he was definitely on alert. Just because he had a natural advantage over a pokemon didn't mean that he could beat them. He'd learned that lesson the hard way multiple times by now.

Still, they seemed relatively distracted as they walked along. The figure was reading from a piece of paper in its hand, or at least he assumed it was reading. He wouldn't know. Goro merely croaked long and loud after the pokemon stopped speaking. It was hard to peg whether it was a girl or a boy or if it even rolled with that kinda thing. He'd heard some pokemon didn't.

"Uh,"  Goro turned side face, keeping his stronger right half to the strange new pokemon. There was a hefty pause as he weighed his options. He briefly debated the merits of pointing his other hand in the direction he came from and lying through his fucking teeth. He could just tell the guy that he saw one of those things half an hour ago on his way here and he wouldn't have to deal with whatever he wanted. But he seemed decent enough and it was telling that he came out asking for help rather than leaping out from behind a rock trying to ambush him or some shit. Probably best to just deal with the conversation and keep on his way. "No. I dunno. I don't think I've ever met any of those.

"But I ain't seen nobody on my way out here, so... no, I reckon not."
He gave an unenthusiastic shrug of the shoulders, a half-apologetic expression on his face. Part of him was curious as to why this pokemon about his size was looking for three others. It helped that Goro had absolutely no plan being here.

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Mon Sep 10, 2018 10:38 am

And this was exactly where the simple portion of this encounter ended. It seemed to Shawn that he had engaged without any major hitches or gives in his language; Goro seemed unaware of his true nature thus far and he hadn't really painted himself into any conversational pits with a few simple sentences. It was now imperative that he maintain this level of façade in front of this sensitive target. At the same time, Shawn needed to get Goro to talk more. He needed more information if he were going to gain anything from this interaction with this man. The Zorua had already come far too far at this point to consider this ending any other way. He wanted this contact.

Alright, what had he learned about Goro so far? Well, the talk of him being notoriously word-light in his speech was nothing short of true. He seemed like a get-to-the-point pokemon, so (at least while he was sober) Shawn suspected that this was the level of conversation that he would expect to work with. It had definitely been worth it to bring that alcohol, although Shawn did feel a slight disappointment that he had not brought anything to mix it with. He wasn't a huge fan of the bitterness himself, he certainly hoped that Goro could stomach it. ...All that said, Goro hadn't exactly just said one thing and been done with a response, so either he wasn't quite as socially void as the rumors would have Shawn believe or Shawn had actually caught his interest. If that were the case, Shawn had a good lead. He knew he needed to follow up with something equally as intriguing, but not too incredibly subtle. It would be terrible if Goro were to decide that "Beryl" was not worth his time.

It wasn't too hard to figure out how to keep the criminal's interest, however.

Beryl sighed and reached up to pinch the bridge of their nose, a few subtle "clicks" audible as the hard materials on their body made contact from the motion. They heaved a deep sigh. "Well, I probably should have expected as much. For all I know someone caught wind of me being here." The Bisharp crossed their arms and their overall demeanor shifted to being quite miffed. "Thank you for your help anyways, sir. It's fairly... 'important' to me that I kind this individual. Can't get paid if a contract's not fulfilled, you know?"

At that, the Bisharp seemed to sour more. "Not that I believe that this loon is good for money, either... they grunted. They seemed to take the piece of paper and stow it away at this juncture, almost as if it were a bit sensitive. "I was hoping that this wouldn't take too long. Was hoping I could collect some of the 'artifacts' up here to consolidate my losses." They looked at Goro as if they expected him to understand what they were saying. "I mean, I imagine that's what you're here for too, yeah?"

Under the illusion, Shawn was using all the finesse he had with he telekinetic abilities to maneuver and collide the rocks in a way that would make a believeable sound that matched his experiences of the species of the past. Unfortunately, visual illusions were mostly the extent of the Zorua's current abilities - he suspected that that might change upon evolution, perhaps. ...It wasn't a ton of finesse, granted, as it was his newest ability. He was slow and careful though and he liked to think that he had it worked out to his advantage. Not like before, when a simple levitation trick might have imbedded a rock into a distant tree.

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Å͙͍̳̣͙͕̎b̵͉͔̺̱͍̹̼̋̈a̧̯̱͓̝̰n̟̖̈́ͯd̡̫͇̤̙̹̻̈õ̶͙̆́ͨ̀̃ͥn̟̖̪͍̤̋ͅ ̜̦̠̔̾á̛͖͎̥͎̭͑̽ļ̭͎͙͕̗̽ͯ̅l̩ ̢͖̲͎̤̲ͤͭ̈͛̑̃ḧͩͦ̆ͣ͏̤̭̱̳̮o̫̦̱͇͂ͨp̴̱eͥ̐̍͛ͥ,͍͔̼̜̜͇ ̙͙͂ͪ̇ͭ̎͝y̴̬̒͌͑ͅe̹̟͍͓ ̥̈́͜w͈̝̞̦̘͖̯͗ͤ̊̿ͣ͒ḧ̨͂͊̅̆o̫̜̰ͣ̅̎̊̈̍́ ̴̠̺ͩ͆ͫͣͭͤ̓ͅe̡̳̩̟͓ñ̥̥̹̜t͔̩̜̃ͦ̋ͣė͙̳̯̣̼̈́ͅr̿̓́ ̈͑҉̫̘̠̱͎̰T̵̘̘̗̺͓͍̦ͤ̒̇ͮH̰̺̰̲̦̖͖͚́̄ͮ̋͝Ệ̫͕͂͝ ̢̹͔͖̗̟̣̬͖̔ͯ̑̽C̫̯͓̥͎͌̓ͬ́ͤ͋̾ͭ̚̕͝Ű̮̟̖̝͙̉ͬ̇R̰̣̰͐͛̀̾̂̊͂̚͢͟͞Ṛ̻̟̱̥̗͎̜̓̊͑̄̊͢E̢̖̬̫̤ͦ̇́͑̓̍̎N̵̮̺̬̣͇͚ͧ̅̀͞T͕̹͕͓̝͕̀ͧͭͤ̍ͪ͟ ̱͍̬̘̖̄ͯͬ͑͊ͣͥͦ͘͢͢P̢͓͓͕̦͎̝̮͛ͪͅL̢̬͔͚̦͚̮̒̆͗͛O̸̧̟̻̞ͣ͊ͮ̏T̺̻͖̲̞́ͬ͐̒ͤ̿̀

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Mon Sep 10, 2018 7:40 pm

Goro blinked at the strange pokemon.

No, he wasn't here for any particular reason. His gaze drifted from the steel-type up to the mountain, eyes squinting through the foggy air. If this place had a bunch of 'artifacts' that were worth the trouble, then maybe he could be a little bit productive on this trip. Money was always nice. Maybe if he found something worth a nice chunk of change, he could get a place in town all for himself. Cattail Marsh would always have a special place in his heart but it'd be convenient to be a little bit closer to work. It wasn't as if anyone was gonna try squatting in his little swamp shack anyways - he was well aware that it was a wreck. But he was also pretty much within walking distance of the mystery dungeon so it wouldn't get abandoned or anything.

"It wasn't before but it sure is now." He grinned at the pokemon in front of him, turning to face the guy fully. Maybe he was the tolerable sort. Just from the look of him, Goro got the sense that this guy had been in a few scraps and knew how to handle himself. And judging from what he was saying, he also knew how to make money with his talents. He was Goro's type of guy. The croagunk shifted his grip on his bindle, switching it over to his left hand. His right hand went to rest on his hip as he spoke.  "What kinda stuff can you find here? I got nothin' but time on my hands."

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Mon Sep 17, 2018 11:35 am

The Bisharp looked enthused with Goro's response, and grinned widely at him. "Hey, that's what I like to hear. Not one to pass up a good opportunity, ey? I like it." They turned and looked up at the mountain in thought, considering all of the options they had come across in their adventures. "Well, I know for sure there are some TMs here that tend to be pretty valuable. Can sell them pretty well to the right google-eyed explorer is you got that inkling. There's also Reviver Seeds and items like that which are pretty valuable to the right explorer, or you know, to yourself. Evolution items too, I'm pretty sure. I've never seen one here myself so I can't be sure, but if you choose to believe the conjecture they're around here somewhere."

Their grin returned as they looked at Goro knowingly, clearly about to get into the best part about this place. "But of course, that's all chump change when you consider that there are Joy Ribbons hidin' up here. Really and truly. Ever wonder why the explorers are so nutso about this place? Well, there's your reason. They can be tricky to find, but thankfully there are plenty of mons up here to find them for you if you know just who to tail." They smirked with a playful air, punctuating the joke that probably wasn't a joke that they had just thrown out.

Shawn smirked right along with his illusion's initial grin. It had worked even better than expected. The Zorua didn't want to get too far ahead of himself, but he had the distinct feeling that the criminal suspected nothing of him thus far, and that was just a thrill Shawn loved having. He had begun to really enjoy experimenting with his powers in a more "professional" setting, and he was beginning to wonder why he hadn't tried this sooner... Granted, this could also be the first-time thrills getting the better of him. He'd have to see how he felt after he had been doing it for a while.

Nevertheless, Shawn had to put all of that aside and keep focused right now. These moments were still crucial to the relationship he was trying to form with a currently unknown target, and he wasn't going to get any further if he started acting suspicious now. He carefully used the rocks to make more solid sounds in the right places as he made his figment gesture to the mountain that was lying in wait. What was the best way to really seal the deal with this guy? ...Should he offer the alcohol already? ...No, no, that wouldn't do. It was too soon to get Goro incoherent; he did want him to actually remember their conversations and interactions. Still, it was a big chip in the enticing game, and it seemed a waste for Shawn to just leave it hanging. He could always just allude to the promise of drinks for now. He had his illusion reach around to the bag behind him, carefully moving the flask where Goro would definitely not see a flask floating out of nowhere.

Beryl gestured up to the mountain. "What do you say? You seem like the sort I could get along with, and if you're new to the area I could be a pretty good guide for you. Show you the hot spots I know of and such. If you don't need a guide... well, entertaining things always seem to find me. And if you're interested..." they reached around behind them and dug around in their bag, making some audible rustling and clinking sounds before producing a slightly suspicious looking flasks. "...I got the goods to make things interesting, just in case." They seemed pretty relaxed about all of this.

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Å͙͍̳̣͙͕̎b̵͉͔̺̱͍̹̼̋̈a̧̯̱͓̝̰n̟̖̈́ͯd̡̫͇̤̙̹̻̈õ̶͙̆́ͨ̀̃ͥn̟̖̪͍̤̋ͅ ̜̦̠̔̾á̛͖͎̥͎̭͑̽ļ̭͎͙͕̗̽ͯ̅l̩ ̢͖̲͎̤̲ͤͭ̈͛̑̃ḧͩͦ̆ͣ͏̤̭̱̳̮o̫̦̱͇͂ͨp̴̱eͥ̐̍͛ͥ,͍͔̼̜̜͇ ̙͙͂ͪ̇ͭ̎͝y̴̬̒͌͑ͅe̹̟͍͓ ̥̈́͜w͈̝̞̦̘͖̯͗ͤ̊̿ͣ͒ḧ̨͂͊̅̆o̫̜̰ͣ̅̎̊̈̍́ ̴̠̺ͩ͆ͫͣͭͤ̓ͅe̡̳̩̟͓ñ̥̥̹̜t͔̩̜̃ͦ̋ͣė͙̳̯̣̼̈́ͅr̿̓́ ̈͑҉̫̘̠̱͎̰T̵̘̘̗̺͓͍̦ͤ̒̇ͮH̰̺̰̲̦̖͖͚́̄ͮ̋͝Ệ̫͕͂͝ ̢̹͔͖̗̟̣̬͖̔ͯ̑̽C̫̯͓̥͎͌̓ͬ́ͤ͋̾ͭ̚̕͝Ű̮̟̖̝͙̉ͬ̇R̰̣̰͐͛̀̾̂̊͂̚͢͟͞Ṛ̻̟̱̥̗͎̜̓̊͑̄̊͢E̢̖̬̫̤ͦ̇́͑̓̍̎N̵̮̺̬̣͇͚ͧ̅̀͞T͕̹͕͓̝͕̀ͧͭͤ̍ͪ͟ ̱͍̬̘̖̄ͯͬ͑͊ͣͥͦ͘͢͢P̢͓͓͕̦͎̝̮͛ͪͅL̢̬͔͚̦͚̮̒̆͗͛O̸̧̟̻̞ͣ͊ͮ̏T̺̻͖̲̞́ͬ͐̒ͤ̿̀

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Mon Sep 17, 2018 11:59 am

"Well, shit, I'm convinced." He could see absolutely no downsides to this proposition. Cool items, pokemon to potentially mug, a decent guy for company, and a cold drink at the end of it all? It just sounded like a good fuckin' day.

There was always the possibility that this was some kind of set up and he was about to get jumped, but Goro didn't exactly have much on him in the first place. His bindle had some shit in it, mostly provisions and knick-knacks that he thought would be useful on his trip, plus some grimy food he'd found here and there that looked (somewhat) safe to consume. The poison type wasn't worried about losing any of it.

Plus if that was the case, this guy would have to beat him. And while Goro was becoming increasingly aware of his own weaknesses and shortcomings every time he got into a scrap these past few months, he still thought of himself as pretty tough. If this was some kinda set up and this guy was genuinely able to put him down, then he was welcome to what he could find. The strong survive and whatnot. But Goro didn't think that was the case here. He just seemed like an alright dude with a decent proposition that happened to cross his path.

"What about yer mark, though? You gonna give up on that?" If things didn't pan out he could always just tell the guy to fuck off and go explore on his own, anyway. Joy ribbons sounded kinda cool. He had one already, tied around his bicep and deeply stained with his boss' blood, but perhaps he could wear two. They were supposed to make you mature faster or some bullshit so maybe he could just double up and blow everyone out of the water. "I'm pretty cool and all, but I ain't gonna stop no one from makin' money."

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:26 am

Beryl shrugged. “Ah... Yeah, I guess I’ll still keep my eye out for the guy. The pay is alright, if the ‘employer’ is good for it. Which I’m not convinced of. If we’re being fair here he probably deserves the punch more than the Marowak does; there’s always that option if I don't get to do it to someone here. Plus, if I found one Joy Ribbon or a few TMs I'd more than break even in terms of value." The Bisharp seemed more ore less indifferent and relaxed at this point, as if it were more than satisfied. They turned around and began looking at the road it had just come from. "I get the sense that you're pretty in the know, but I'll still try to keep it brief if I see the guy. We don't have to worry about it right now, though. Gotta get further up this mountain, right?"

Beryl held out their hand to properly shake. In the case that the greeting was received, it was cold and segmented and hard, and made a solid "clacking" sound when the individual parts moved. Their grip was... unfortunately strong. It gave the impression that either this was a rutheless mon or they just literally had no control over their strength. "Name's Beryl. Kind of a weird name, I know; but what can I say? I fell victim to the whole 'name a steel type after a metal' trope. Pleased to meet you." They gave Goro a moment to respond, nodding at him chipperly before they turned and looked around at the rocky shelves surrounding them again. They went silent in thought for a moment of thought. They pulled a ration of apple from their bag and took a bite out of it, chewing thoughtfully as they considered the options for climbing. "To be honest... before you came along I wasn't much farther up than this. I was just scouting from those ledges over there, near where the 'item territory' starts. We could take the road back up, but there's also a more 'direct' path if you catch my drift," they explained as they set a foot on a loose rock for emphasis. "If we move a little material right here we could climb up. Just gotta find the right place to hit it..."

Shawn was smirking along with his illusion's grin. He couldn't help but feel a sense of pride over this intricate deception and how it was going. Goro had agreed to come with him, he hadn't missed any details so far... Things were progressing flawlessly, which of course Shawn liked. He was beginning to feel just slightly like this whole "acting" thing was second-nature to him. Perhaps it was the same to the others of his species? Or, more likely, he just had an enhanced affinity for it.

This handshake though... it was enough to make the little fox's skin prickle with discomfort. He had to make sure to keep the stones perfectly in place, apply the right amount of psychic pressure, don't impress any extrasensory feelings on the frog... both Shawn and his illusion fell into silence as he focused very hard on keeping every aspect of this intricate gesture perfectly in line. It was giving him a slight headache - both the focusing and the very complex use of psychic energy. He was fairly sure the pressure had been too great, but at least it made sense for a steel type to have a rough grip. He kept his eye out for any suspicion in Goro though, just in case.

Shawn didn't foresee any more extensive need for the rocks at this moment, so he swapped them out for something that required less of him to control - an apple. He had used these extensively for practice with his abilities, so he knew how to control them like the back of his hand. He caused the illusion to emulate "eating" by lifting the apple to the Bisharp's mouth and breaking pieces of the apple off. Those pieces dropped unseen through the illusion, and Shawn provided the chewing sounds by catching them in his mouth. It was a little trick for emulating bipeds that he had grown quite proud of.

Now, he just hoped he could get the frog to create a shortcut for him. He scoured the rocks, looking to identify a weak spot that could be collapsed. He found one quickly enough, but then the true struggle came with convincing the frog to knock it over without ruining his impression of the Bisharp as a strong, ruthless criminal. Not that a single Focus Blast wouldn't have made quick work of the impediment, but if the Zorua could avoid being momentarily paralyzed he would absolutely take that advantage.

Also, he had a plan.

Shawn caused the Bisharp to rear back, as if it were readying a quick strike. He emulated the martial poses that he had seen the dojo trainer take during his training. Before the attack was launched, however, he made Beryl take a pause and look at Goro. The illusion smirked at him and taunted playfully - "You think you could handle one? I'm interested to see what you're packing."

This would be very valuable information if Goro took the bait.

Shawn the Zorua - 4 energy + 7 energy (netting 1 Big Apple randomly dropped somewhere before arriving) = 11 energy
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Å͙͍̳̣͙͕̎b̵͉͔̺̱͍̹̼̋̈a̧̯̱͓̝̰n̟̖̈́ͯd̡̫͇̤̙̹̻̈õ̶͙̆́ͨ̀̃ͥn̟̖̪͍̤̋ͅ ̜̦̠̔̾á̛͖͎̥͎̭͑̽ļ̭͎͙͕̗̽ͯ̅l̩ ̢͖̲͎̤̲ͤͭ̈͛̑̃ḧͩͦ̆ͣ͏̤̭̱̳̮o̫̦̱͇͂ͨp̴̱eͥ̐̍͛ͥ,͍͔̼̜̜͇ ̙͙͂ͪ̇ͭ̎͝y̴̬̒͌͑ͅe̹̟͍͓ ̥̈́͜w͈̝̞̦̘͖̯͗ͤ̊̿ͣ͒ḧ̨͂͊̅̆o̫̜̰ͣ̅̎̊̈̍́ ̴̠̺ͩ͆ͫͣͭͤ̓ͅe̡̳̩̟͓ñ̥̥̹̜t͔̩̜̃ͦ̋ͣė͙̳̯̣̼̈́ͅr̿̓́ ̈͑҉̫̘̠̱͎̰T̵̘̘̗̺͓͍̦ͤ̒̇ͮH̰̺̰̲̦̖͖͚́̄ͮ̋͝Ệ̫͕͂͝ ̢̹͔͖̗̟̣̬͖̔ͯ̑̽C̫̯͓̥͎͌̓ͬ́ͤ͋̾ͭ̚̕͝Ű̮̟̖̝͙̉ͬ̇R̰̣̰͐͛̀̾̂̊͂̚͢͟͞Ṛ̻̟̱̥̗͎̜̓̊͑̄̊͢E̢̖̬̫̤ͦ̇́͑̓̍̎N̵̮̺̬̣͇͚ͧ̅̀͞T͕̹͕͓̝͕̀ͧͭͤ̍ͪ͟ ̱͍̬̘̖̄ͯͬ͑͊ͣͥͦ͘͢͢P̢͓͓͕̦͎̝̮͛ͪͅL̢̬͔͚̦͚̮̒̆͗͛O̸̧̟̻̞ͣ͊ͮ̏T̺̻͖̲̞́ͬ͐̒ͤ̿̀

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:57 am

"Uh huh," It was the steel type's decision if he wanted to item searching rather than keep hunting for the people he was sent after. It wasn't Goro's place to sway him one way or another. Personally, he'd stick to his job no matter the circumstances. Cultivating a reputation for being reliable was always a good idea. If word got out that you weren't good for work then you were shit outta luck. But then again, this guy was probably a lot more experienced than him. He was taller at least, and he had the look of someone who'd been in this business for a while. Goro was technically on his first solo job, and it was a long-term one at that. He didn't have the clout nor the interest in butting his nose into this guy's business. "Well, suit yourself. Thanks for showin' me around.

"I'm Goro."
He went for the handshake with his good hand and was surprised when he got the squeeze of a lifetime. Pride kept him from crying out or pulling away. He was helpless to do much other than squeeze back and considering his newest acquaintance was made of metal, he didn't exactly get far. The smaller frog pokemon's voice was slightly strained as his hand was squeezed. "S'good to meet ya."

He was secretly relieved when it ended, shaking his hand out when he thought the other pokemon wasn't looking. He kept quiet as Beryl explained what he was doing and how far he'd gotten since getting here. The guy wanted to climb up. Goro was a little leery of such an endeavor considering he was operating with one good hand, and he had a bag of stuff tied to a stick. It was sure to make climbing awkward. When the steel type set about inspecting a portion of the rock wall to knock down, Goro simply stood back and watched. He'd honestly prefer finding the main path and going up that way. Beryl seemed like he knew a few things, though, so the least he could do was play along for a little bit.

"Sure," The croagunk shrugged his shoulders easily when his companion stopped and asked him to do it instead. He was a fighting type, after all, and those kinds of moves were good against rocks. Steel was too, but it hadn't looked like Beryl was gearing up to use a move. "Hold my shit?"

He ambled up next to the taller pokemon and held out his hobo stick. There honestly wasn't anything of real value in it, so if this guy wanted to take it and dash, Goro wouldn't be too put out. Plus he had ways of stopping the guy - a good earthquake usually put everyone on their ass. It was fortunate for Shawn that he kept his gaze on the rock wall Beryl was about to knock down; He wouldn't be looking at the illusion as it took his bindle.

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Wed Sep 19, 2018 12:11 pm

Oh fuck shit something to levitate. Shawn caused his illusion to struggle with the bag a bit as he reached out to the bag and attempted to negotiate it's weight. It wasn't exactly the densest thing in the world, but at the same time it was something that the Zorua had never had to handle before. The weight distribution was completely off-center, and it was hardly worth trying to make it look like he was holding it with two hands. His grip was too far down the pole at first, and the damn thing nearly tipped out of his grasp. He only just managed to get a solid grip on it again, and decided to just cut losses and set the thing down on the ground on one end. He held it up from the top where the bag was tied, and then shifted his illusion to make it appear as though Beryl was using it for support, like a walking stick. Shawn mumbled something resembling an apology to the croagunk and then took a hot sec to regain his composer and be salty about the situation. He blamed the Croagunk, even though the situation really had no blame and hadn't even caused a problem outside of inconveniencing Shawn.

Despite his ruffled feathers, Shawn continued to pursue his instigation with intense determination. He thought nothing of the croagunk's possessions - they were hardly worth risking the ire of the criminal in front of him and dashing everything that he had worked for thus far. They didn't even get a second thought. Instead, Shawn centered his focus on carefully observing Goro as the poison-type sized up the rock, making note of all of the poison-types movements. The way he handed over the bag with no fear of repercussions insinuated several things: Goro was very aware that he had the strength to negate any plausible threats and could afford some leniency with his actions, he was incapable of multi-tasking, and at least that level of trust had been achieved between the two of them. All things of worth to note. Secondly, the moves that Goro had access too... clearly higher class than the ones Shawn had access to. Definitely not to be trifled with without considerable planning. Third, the croagunk was very blunt in his actions. He was clearly used to solving things physically, and put a lot of stock into being strong. Comparatively… well it was just a hunch, but Shawn had suspicions that Goro's fighting style didn't involve a lot of "tactics." Another thing worth noting down in his book.

The rocks came cleanly rumbling down when the wall was struck in the place that Shawn had marked out. He felt another wave of satisfaction as the shifted minerals provided a set of rocky steps to ascend to the higher points with. Not to mention... the great shift in terrain revealed items that had previously been encased in earth, and were now ripe for the taking. A hole containing a few Cubone was also revealed - seemingly a den or a hideout of some kind. The two occupants quickly fled in fear, and Shawn thought little of them if they weren't going to interfere with the situation. The shockwaves of the collapsed also traveled further up the cliffside, disrupting a nest that was from this angle unseable. All in all, the action yielded very few negative repercussions, which Shawn liked.

Beryl seemed to be caught off-guard by Goro handing them the bag, as if they had expected him to do it while holding the thing. They fumbled with the package a few times before settling with propping the bindle up on the ground and shifting a bit of their weight onto it casually. "Sorry, kinda took me by surprise," he mumbled as they regained their composure. They waited patiently as the rocks gave way to the force of impact and began to fall into a traversable pattern, creating a pass to the higher paths up the mountain. They nodded their head approvingly.

"Nice, nice, that was pretty good. You seem like a guy who knows how to handle himself," Beryl commented, handing back the bindle that Goro had given to him. The bag lacked any sign of tampering, and Beryl seemingly became more interested in the items that also spilled forth from the shifting rocks. "Knocking things down in these parts usually gets you more than one reward... some of the items hide in the walls. Plenty of supplies if you know the right place to look." They offered a handful of seeds that they had gathered to demonstrate their point out to Goro for a quick examination before sliding them into his own bag. They looked around a bit more, but didn't seem to locate anything of interest. They even took a quick peak into the now evacuated den that had been hiding behind the rocks, but for the most part it seemed empty. Even after a good inspection Beryl ultimately walked away from it empty-handed.

"Seems like that's all I really need here, honestly," Beryl commented as they straightened up their posture. "Little disappointing, bu this is only the beginning. There's still stuff around if you want to stock up, though. No rush, I'm just gonna get a quick head start and scout things out." The dense pokemon navigated the rocks with a surprising ammont of finesse, darting right up and taking a pose of surveillance. "If you don't mind me asking, since we have some time," Beryl casually called down, "what did bring you to the mountains if it wasn't the ribbons? Training? Just looking for a change of pace?"

Shawn the Zorua - 0 energy

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Å͙͍̳̣͙͕̎b̵͉͔̺̱͍̹̼̋̈a̧̯̱͓̝̰n̟̖̈́ͯd̡̫͇̤̙̹̻̈õ̶͙̆́ͨ̀̃ͥn̟̖̪͍̤̋ͅ ̜̦̠̔̾á̛͖͎̥͎̭͑̽ļ̭͎͙͕̗̽ͯ̅l̩ ̢͖̲͎̤̲ͤͭ̈͛̑̃ḧͩͦ̆ͣ͏̤̭̱̳̮o̫̦̱͇͂ͨp̴̱eͥ̐̍͛ͥ,͍͔̼̜̜͇ ̙͙͂ͪ̇ͭ̎͝y̴̬̒͌͑ͅe̹̟͍͓ ̥̈́͜w͈̝̞̦̘͖̯͗ͤ̊̿ͣ͒ḧ̨͂͊̅̆o̫̜̰ͣ̅̎̊̈̍́ ̴̠̺ͩ͆ͫͣͭͤ̓ͅe̡̳̩̟͓ñ̥̥̹̜t͔̩̜̃ͦ̋ͣė͙̳̯̣̼̈́ͅr̿̓́ ̈͑҉̫̘̠̱͎̰T̵̘̘̗̺͓͍̦ͤ̒̇ͮH̰̺̰̲̦̖͖͚́̄ͮ̋͝Ệ̫͕͂͝ ̢̹͔͖̗̟̣̬͖̔ͯ̑̽C̫̯͓̥͎͌̓ͬ́ͤ͋̾ͭ̚̕͝Ű̮̟̖̝͙̉ͬ̇R̰̣̰͐͛̀̾̂̊͂̚͢͟͞Ṛ̻̟̱̥̗͎̜̓̊͑̄̊͢E̢̖̬̫̤ͦ̇́͑̓̍̎N̵̮̺̬̣͇͚ͧ̅̀͞T͕̹͕͓̝͕̀ͧͭͤ̍ͪ͟ ̱͍̬̘̖̄ͯͬ͑͊ͣͥͦ͘͢͢P̢͓͓͕̦͎̝̮͛ͪͅL̢̬͔͚̦͚̮̒̆͗͛O̸̧̟̻̞ͣ͊ͮ̏T̺̻͖̲̞́ͬ͐̒ͤ̿̀

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Wed Sep 19, 2018 12:57 pm

If he were to stop and think about it, Drain Punch was a weird move to use on a wall. Usually, he just socked someone in the face really hard and he felt a bit reinvigorated afterward. But it was also a solid fighting move, so while on paper it might seem like he was trying to vampire leech a fucking wall of rocks, in practice, it was just a croagunk bringing it down with a textbook right punch. Beryl clearly knew what he was doing, picking out this exact spot for Goro to strike. The terrain in front of them split almost perfectly, large chunks of granite and rock tumbling to the sides and creating something of a steep stairway for the pair of travelers.

Goro whistled appreciatively at his own handiwork, taking several steps back as it all came down. He noticed the steel type to his side fumble with his hobo stick but he just chalked it up to the guy having to be delicate with something for a change. If he put the squeeze on his bindle like he did Goro's hand the thing would snap clean in two pieces.

He took the compliment in stride, nodding absently in response, accepting his bindle back as well. Item hunting wasn't really new to him but this way of doing it surely was. Back home he usually just noticed things laying out in the open, or he took them away from other pokemon. To think they were hidden like this... The world was a strange place.

As Beryl jumped up the rock pathway and set about scouting ahead, Goro helped himself to what he could find. He spotted a little seed, some weird looking disc, and another ribbon thing. They all slipped into his bindle easily - he had plenty of room for loot considering he'd eaten most of the provisions that it was holding on the way here. After that he simply raised his head and let his companion do his thing, searching for anything of interest from his elevated watchpoint.

"I got some time off work so I figured I'd go someplace new, yeah." Goro slipped his bindle into his left hand, cradling it delicately so as not to upset the injury. He raised his right hand over his eyes to shield from the sun, looking up in the sky. He noticed a pair of big ass dangerous-looking grey birds flying overhead. They weren't circling them or slowing down at all though, and in a few moments they'd passed over the pair of travelers and kept on going. The croagunk watched them until they were a safe distance away before turning back to his companion, neglecting to mention them since they were leaving the area. "Didn't have this place in mind when I left. I just picked a direction I'd never went before and started off."

He waited a few moments in case Beryl spotted anything before ambling up the pathway. In contrast to the dextrous steel type, Goro went much, much slower. His climbing was clumsy, awkward, and cautious above all. He nearly stumbled a few times despite his care anyway, his smaller size working against him. It took him longer than it should have but he climbed up to stand at the bisharp's side, taking stock of the next pathway.

There was a little bird-nest that had gotten shook up pretty bad after his punch. It was a bit of an awkward distance, laying in a now unsteady-looking rocky groove that he'd have to shimmy over if he wanted to reach it. Goro stood up on his tippy toes and raised his head, trying to get a peek into what was inside. There was a cluster of eggs and no mama in sight. But the two giant grey death birds flying over them flashed in his mind and Goro thought better of disturbing the nest. Maybe it was theirs, maybe not, but he wasn't all that hungry. He'd packed plenty of food for his little trip. Plus he didn't have anything to cook with and no way to start a fire.

"How 'bout you? You do much training here?" He started down a few steps without a real direction in mind, moving slowly. He was waiting for Beryl to lead them in another direction - clearly, the taller steel type knew how to navigate the area better than he. "If the locals take after the terrain, the rock types must make it easy."

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Thu Sep 20, 2018 12:41 pm

Beryl waited patiently for Goro to make his way up the cliff, standing at the edge of the next mountain pathway. They nodded knowingly and responded, "That's understandable. Best to do as much as possible when you have the time to do it. I do a lot of the same when I have the free time - and sometimes when I'm not on free time. I don't like to plan things out too much anymore." They looked up and made a note of the two very angry Aerodactyls circling above them, making a point to pace right past the nest without addressing it at all. They seemed wholely unphased in fact. They gave Goro a nod as he joined them and then moved to continue up the mountain.

They paused when Goro didn't follow immediately, and turned to see what he was looking at. They seemed to be a little leery about his inquiry into the nest, tensing up and shifting their foot a bit unconsciously as though indicatin that they were looking to distance themselves from the nest. "...I hate to sound like a parent or something, but I wouldn't approach the nest with them around," Beryl cautioned, gesturing to the circling dino birds. "I don't wanna infringe on your side hustle, but probably better that they just worry about their nest and not us." They kind of drifted off when Goro was fairly quick to back away from the formation, as the action itself seemed to placate the tension. The bisharp took another look up at the sky to confirm the position of those Aerodactyl again.

"Nothin' personal on that," they explained as Goro rejoined them and they began walking, "I just know that the locals around here tend to be very 'in-tune' with one another. Put a few of them on edge and they'll all be wary. If my guy's around here I'd rather just let him believe some rocks eroded, y'know?" They were already back to their casual and even chipper demeanor, stretching out their arms and loosening up their body. They tapped their chin as they considered Goro's question, making a "plink, plink" sound with every tap. "Hmmm... Well I'm all over the place really. I go anywhere where there's work in my profession - usually that gives me enough training. It's pretty easy to contend with the rock types around here though, yeah," Beryl explained. "Honestly I didn't train much before I took up this profession. I was looking to be something else entirely when I was younger."

Beryl didn't elaborate any further, instead opting to continue the conversation. "How about you? Your job got you doing anything exciting in an foreign places?

If it's 'don't ask, don't tell," I understand.
"

Wow Goro looked stupid climbing that rock. Shawn almost felt a little bad making him do it. At the same time, though, he was fully judging him for it. He had never seen a frog have that much climbing. Granted

It seemed that Goro did a lot of things that he did completely on a whim, which worked out in Shawn's favor for now but he could also see it posing a problem to him in the future. ...Like right now, as he attempted to get them both consumed by some agitated Aerodactyl. honestly, if Shawn weren't Shawn they likely would have been eaten. There was probably still a chance that they would be. It seemed like he was going to have to watch this frog closely, or more accurately: suffer through the consequences of his poor choices.

This willy behavior could also explain his random disappearance for that considerable length of time... but that was all still inconclusive. Goro had spoken of having some unmentioned "job," so it could have had to do with that, as well. Whatever it was Shawn was pretty damn certain it was something illegal and seedy. Not that that was a bad thing; in fact, Goro's experiences could teach Shawn a lot about the inner workings of the criminal ring...

_________________




Å͙͍̳̣͙͕̎b̵͉͔̺̱͍̹̼̋̈a̧̯̱͓̝̰n̟̖̈́ͯd̡̫͇̤̙̹̻̈õ̶͙̆́ͨ̀̃ͥn̟̖̪͍̤̋ͅ ̜̦̠̔̾á̛͖͎̥͎̭͑̽ļ̭͎͙͕̗̽ͯ̅l̩ ̢͖̲͎̤̲ͤͭ̈͛̑̃ḧͩͦ̆ͣ͏̤̭̱̳̮o̫̦̱͇͂ͨp̴̱eͥ̐̍͛ͥ,͍͔̼̜̜͇ ̙͙͂ͪ̇ͭ̎͝y̴̬̒͌͑ͅe̹̟͍͓ ̥̈́͜w͈̝̞̦̘͖̯͗ͤ̊̿ͣ͒ḧ̨͂͊̅̆o̫̜̰ͣ̅̎̊̈̍́ ̴̠̺ͩ͆ͫͣͭͤ̓ͅe̡̳̩̟͓ñ̥̥̹̜t͔̩̜̃ͦ̋ͣė͙̳̯̣̼̈́ͅr̿̓́ ̈͑҉̫̘̠̱͎̰T̵̘̘̗̺͓͍̦ͤ̒̇ͮH̰̺̰̲̦̖͖͚́̄ͮ̋͝Ệ̫͕͂͝ ̢̹͔͖̗̟̣̬͖̔ͯ̑̽C̫̯͓̥͎͌̓ͬ́ͤ͋̾ͭ̚̕͝Ű̮̟̖̝͙̉ͬ̇R̰̣̰͐͛̀̾̂̊͂̚͢͟͞Ṛ̻̟̱̥̗͎̜̓̊͑̄̊͢E̢̖̬̫̤ͦ̇́͑̓̍̎N̵̮̺̬̣͇͚ͧ̅̀͞T͕̹͕͓̝͕̀ͧͭͤ̍ͪ͟ ̱͍̬̘̖̄ͯͬ͑͊ͣͥͦ͘͢͢P̢͓͓͕̦͎̝̮͛ͪͅL̢̬͔͚̦͚̮̒̆͗͛O̸̧̟̻̞ͣ͊ͮ̏T̺̻͖̲̞́ͬ͐̒ͤ̿̀

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:07 pm

At Beryl's warning, Goro paused his descent. He didn't expect the aerodactyls to stick around - they'd been going the opposite direction, but apparently all the locals had some kind of egg-protection-sense. It wasn't as if he had any use for a couple of mystery eggs in the first place but being warned away by both Beryl and the circling death dinosaurs still irked him. Goro stared hatefully up into the sky with a heavy frown on his face, turning back around from the nest. It was probably a stupid idea anyway. He just thought he could get away with it.

He rejoined Beryl in their stroll, comfortable with letting the older and more experienced pokemon lead the way. The steel type had the type of droll voice that he imagined would lull him to sleep were they not hiking on a goddamn mountain. But it was nice to listen to as Beryl described their experience training here and elsewhere. They seemed to travel a lot based on their work as opposed to Goro who did most of his stuff at home. Lately, he'd been venturing out a lot but it was more by necessity than anything else. Even just leaving town on his little break required convincing himself that it was a good idea. His natural inclination had been to waste the time away in the swamp.

"I didn't think it would at first, but yeah, it's been a trip." He wasn't particularly worried about spilling the beans or saying something he shouldn't. Beryl seemed cool enough. And it wasn't as if anyone would believe the steel type if they tried telling people that a croagunk, a floatzel, and an umbreon walked into a haunted mansion and made a deal with a god. It sounded like the start of a really, really bad joke. "Never fought ghosts before but the first thing I did was go to that haunted mansion near Grima Outpost. Ya know the one?

"It was rough. Fuckin' house is unnatural."
He had to suppress the minute shiver that threatened to overcome him, remembering his time in the Chateau. The actual pokemon that he encountered wasn't the worst part of it at all. It was the dungeon itself that gave him the heebie-jeebies any time he gave it thought. Goro was glad to be working back closer to home in any case. "I think we're focusin' on more local stuff now, though."

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Mon Sep 24, 2018 10:54 am

"Really? 'Fraid I haven't heard of the place, actually. First time I've heard of it," Beryl responded, sounding thoroughly intrigued. "I never get lucky enough to land gigs that send me to wild places like that... I imagine the 'mons that live around those parts probably take care of their own dirty business. Not that I haven't been around the area ever. I've taken a few poor saps down to the labor camps their once or twice." They nodded as they listened to his description of the house, which was short but clearly enough to give the large steel type an idea of what the dungeon was like. They looked slightly intrigued, despite the terrible implications residing behind the Croagunk's words.

Beryl seemed to be thinking now. "Yeah, can't deny the benefits of local jobs, especially when you've had a crazy run of it. Can't help but feel a little jealous of you though... that sounds like a hell of a way to break the monotony." They were sounding downright enthusiastic now, as if the idea was getting them more and more excited by the second. "Don't wanna harp on a sore subject, but what was the place like? It had to be at least somewhat memorable if it was challenging enough to be that much of a pain in the ass. Got any details you can share?"

Already, Shawn was getting so much valuable information. So Goro had been in the South... on a job, no less. It certainly seemed like business was booming in the criminal underworld. Maybe Shawn was missing out? Petty crimes didn't sound very appealing honestly, if things were like that Shawn was certain he'd be sick of the prospect before he even had a chance to get situated. But a strange mansion with dubious going-ons… That sounded like it had potential. He had never heard of the place before now, so it must have been a place that had appeared since his disappearance. It clearly had some secrets to it, if it was so complicated that even a high-strength criminal like Goro came out of it feeling sour.

Yes, this was a very worthwhile time investment. Shawn had no intention of letting up any time soon; he had many more questions for Goro…

_________________




Å͙͍̳̣͙͕̎b̵͉͔̺̱͍̹̼̋̈a̧̯̱͓̝̰n̟̖̈́ͯd̡̫͇̤̙̹̻̈õ̶͙̆́ͨ̀̃ͥn̟̖̪͍̤̋ͅ ̜̦̠̔̾á̛͖͎̥͎̭͑̽ļ̭͎͙͕̗̽ͯ̅l̩ ̢͖̲͎̤̲ͤͭ̈͛̑̃ḧͩͦ̆ͣ͏̤̭̱̳̮o̫̦̱͇͂ͨp̴̱eͥ̐̍͛ͥ,͍͔̼̜̜͇ ̙͙͂ͪ̇ͭ̎͝y̴̬̒͌͑ͅe̹̟͍͓ ̥̈́͜w͈̝̞̦̘͖̯͗ͤ̊̿ͣ͒ḧ̨͂͊̅̆o̫̜̰ͣ̅̎̊̈̍́ ̴̠̺ͩ͆ͫͣͭͤ̓ͅe̡̳̩̟͓ñ̥̥̹̜t͔̩̜̃ͦ̋ͣė͙̳̯̣̼̈́ͅr̿̓́ ̈͑҉̫̘̠̱͎̰T̵̘̘̗̺͓͍̦ͤ̒̇ͮH̰̺̰̲̦̖͖͚́̄ͮ̋͝Ệ̫͕͂͝ ̢̹͔͖̗̟̣̬͖̔ͯ̑̽C̫̯͓̥͎͌̓ͬ́ͤ͋̾ͭ̚̕͝Ű̮̟̖̝͙̉ͬ̇R̰̣̰͐͛̀̾̂̊͂̚͢͟͞Ṛ̻̟̱̥̗͎̜̓̊͑̄̊͢E̢̖̬̫̤ͦ̇́͑̓̍̎N̵̮̺̬̣͇͚ͧ̅̀͞T͕̹͕͓̝͕̀ͧͭͤ̍ͪ͟ ̱͍̬̘̖̄ͯͬ͑͊ͣͥͦ͘͢͢P̢͓͓͕̦͎̝̮͛ͪͅL̢̬͔͚̦͚̮̒̆͗͛O̸̧̟̻̞ͣ͊ͮ̏T̺̻͖̲̞́ͬ͐̒ͤ̿̀

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the King   Mon Sep 24, 2018 6:24 pm

"Hmm..." Goro cocked his head in thought, contemplating what he could get away with telling. There were some things that happened during that trip that he thought his boss wouldn't want to get out. They did some things that he imagined would have several upset parties coming after them. But the journey up to that point should be fine enough to talk about. After all, anyone could go to that house anytime they wanted to verify what he had to say. "S'kinda hard to explain. It's like the place was ripped straight from a scary story or somethin'.

"The doors open and shut by themselves and the rooms don't always stay in the same place. You could go in one door, turn around and try to go back out, but the room you came from would be different."
The feeling of being trapped in a place like that was not one he wanted to remember. The only choice they had after entering that house was to keep going deeper in hopes of finding a way out. It was unlike any place he'd ever been before, mystery dungeon or no. The only way he'd ever go back voluntarily is if he knew he was strong enough to kill any ghost he came across - the chateau itself was enough of a challenge. "Spooky as anything. And it made it real easy to get lost. Then you got all the ghosts flying around you making it that much more of a pain in the dick. That's a different thing, 'cos they're just annoying. It's hard to punch a guy when he can float around in the air and phase through walls, you know?"

Goro trailed off, shrugging his shoulders as he walked side-by-side with the taller pokemon. He usually wasn't one for idle chatter but something about Beryl just made it easy to talk like this. And it felt kind of good to just talk about the more mundane aspects of the experience. It wasn't as if he'd ever talk about what happened in that mansion with his boss or her little pet. They may have gone through there with him but he wouldn't feel comfortable doing something like that. The former because she was way too busy and important to be bothered with this kind of dumb thing, and the latter because he was an annoying twat that made Goro want to punch him in the mouth every time he spoke.

The croagunk was a bit too absorbed in his own introspection to notice the pair of archen perched upon a rocky incline a ways. They were about twenty meters above the rocky trail that he and his companion were walking on, peering down at the rough-looking travelers curiously.

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