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With the cooling season of Autumn, Ice-types are starting to re-emerge from their hibernation as Ghost-, Normal-, and Flying-types swarm in the largest numbers they will all year. In comparison, wild Fire- and Bug-type populations are falling in number. The migration of Flying-types to the south in search of warmer weather has also started, as Istin City starts to re-freeze and Autumn marks the beginning of Cypwater Point's rainy season. Handlers and Rogues alike should be wary: Ghost-type powers are boosted during this season, at the cost of being more prone to their triggers.

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 Branson Faust's Travels, Rosalie
Gryphon
 Posted: Jul 2 2013, 12:16 AM
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dyslexic chicken
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Adrian Haverick

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The pile of plate armor- and the human underneath- got unsteadily back to his feet, rubbing gloomily at his head. He wasn't much older than Branson, maybe in his early twenties, and looked less than enthusiastic to have not only been taken down by a small, fluffy Pokemon in full view of his Lord, but now to have to help welcome into the Guard the young man that had successfully helped capture the feral thing. A young man, no less, with the simple, rustic look of a farmer somehow lost in the big city. The corner of the young Guardian's mouth curled up in distaste.

On the other side of the room, the other Guardian, slouched against the wall, managed to shove himself to his feet as well, and looked to Lord Archer for a command- but the older huntsman didn't seem that enthusiastic to deal with anything else at the moment. He was sitting, perched on the corner of his desk, rubbing moodily at his head where the mounted antlers had crashed into his skull. He'd poured a small glass with some sort of amber liquor from a crystal-cut bottle, and drained it in two indulgent gulps.

He hadn't stuttered in his orders, and it seemed like that was as friendly and warm a welcome as he was in the mood to give.

"Come on, then," the Guardian charged with Branson grunted, waving to the new recruit and leading the way to the cabin's door. He didn't seem particularly friendly in the least, marching them away from the strewn chaos of Lord Archer's home, and down the quiet, cobblestone road, keeping his silence until they had left the other Guardian and the huntsman behind. Then, he grunted out a coarse laugh. "So, farm boy, tradin' up to a higher station, are we? Well, we'll see how long you last when you're face-to-face with things a bit more dangerous than pulling a muscle during a harvest, huh."

It was getting late in the morning, and although the Pass had been chilly at dawn even this deep into the summer months, it was rapidly growing warmer as the stone streets heated in the brilliant sun. It looked like a cloudless, peaceful day- although this portion of the city was quiet, civilians and chatting Guards still passed by the two in groups of two or three. A small, ponyta-drawn wagon rumbled swiftly past.

The Guardian leading Branson's way guided him into another building, larger and taller than the Lord's cabin, and constructed of rough-cut stone rather than simple logs. Two Guards at the entrance nodded to him, rolling their eyes at the expression on his face when they were pretty sure he wasn't looking. Their nods to Branson were somewhat kinder. They looked dignified and strong in their well-cared-for armor, with their short swords dangling at their sides. A Spearow, perched on the edge of the roof, cried down at them, feathers fluffed against a sudden mountain breeze. The young man ignored it and, with barely more than a gesture of acknowledgement to his fellow Guards, pushed his way into the building and waited impatiently for the new kid to follow on his heels.

Inside the barracks, the entryway was empty except for a sleeping Growlithe curled up in a corner, with vacant wooden benches and a small, unlit fireplace. It was an unembellished, simple and very functional space, all unpainted stone and unstained wood. Branson's guide didn't give him much time to look around; without another word, he led him down one of the small, dim hallways. There were windows at the entrance, and there must have been some source of sunlight from further down the hall, but there weren't even lamps within the hallway, and the narrow spaces were gloomy and smelled faintly of damp stone and mildew.

Branson's guide counted down four wooden doors, then, after working against the rusty handle for a second or two, opened the fifth and slipped into a storeroom. Metal clacked on metal as he searched the piles of scale-mail shirts and pants for something in what he gauged to be Branson's size. After finally picking out the armor, he snatched a shield off a small pile, and a halberd from where they were hanging from an iron rack and thrust the wooden handle into Branson's hands. "We don't got shovels, farm boy, so you'll have to learn to use that instead. Closest thing on hand." He dropped the armor at Branson's feet, then pushed past him out into the hall, barely giving him enough time to pick the scale-mail and the shield up before dragging him further into the barracks.

There were three more doors on either side before, at the end of the hall, the small space opened into a wider room with a large glass window and two long, wooden tables. A pair of young Guardians were sitting at one, their heads close together, foreheads nearly touching, talking in undertones; at the second, an older woman was asleep with her head on the table and her arms stretched out haphazardly across the wood.

"EY! GRETA!" The guide's shout shocked the flirting Guards into silence and jerked the woman awake; her plate armor clattered as she sat up with a start, shamelessly wiping drool off her chin with the back of one leather glove. "New recruit here. What do you want me to do with him?

Her pale eyes scanned over both of them with a curious glint. She opened her mouth as though to speak, but a huge yawn overcame her instead; she spent a moment stretching, wincing slightly as the motion jarred her stiff back. Couldn't blame her- it must have been terribly uncomfortable, sleeping in full plate armor like that. She swung her legs over the wooden bench and stood- pausing again to brace her hands on the small of her back and lean back to pop her tense spine back into relaxation- then swaggered over to the pair of young men. She was at least a decade older than Branson, and a head shorter, although even under the armor she looked to be nearly a match for him in girth, a compact and muscular woman. Her face was coarse and doughy, her hair mouse-brown and wildly curled, frizzy and uncontrollable, loose around her ears. She smelled like sawdust and cheap wine. "Eh, let him put that armor on, then he can come with me for a bit. I'm supposed to be relievin' Ereck at the Guard Post at the northern pass in an hour." Her eyes slid from the other Guardian to Branson, and she shot him a lopsided, apologetic grin. "Sorry, pup. It's boring work most of the time- every few years we'll stop an Order Rogue from escapin' the country or stop some Caledon outlaw from slippin' in through the border, but like all trade, street-trash moves by boat more often than on foot through the mountains, these days. But at least I'm pretty sure you'll be able t'handle it." She clapped one meaty hand on his shoulder, then made her way- slightly unsteadily- towards the hall. "Come on then, pup. Ye get yer way into that armor, get yerself familiar with yer weapon and whatever Pokemon the Lord Archer gave ya, and meet me out front. Good, honest day's work ahead of us."

--------------------
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Rosalie
 Posted: Aug 5 2013, 11:19 PM
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It's a box of spiders.
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Total Posts: 2294
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Branson Faust, Rohesia Clements

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1.


Not to be dissuaded so easily as that, he followed his superior pleasantly, and did not rise to the bait. Instead, he replied as though no barbs had been hidden in the question, "I'll be right behind you, sir. And yessir, that'd be the general idea, though don't go underestimating a harvest either, mind. Takes a lotta work and a lotta dedication and a fair bit of patience." It was his way of defending himself, really, pushing aside a comment in such a way that it would roll off his back and putting the pressure for hostility back on the instigator. He'd never been in a fight with it yet, and he wasn't eager to start his guardian career in one. If he was nervous (and he was), he didn't let it show.

He looked around, unabashedly impressed by the new building he was taken to. Despite the scent of the damp earth, it was the stuff of his boyhood dreams. He would love to ride down the hall and out into the streets on a mission, that was for sure. He took some reassurance from that the guards posted outside what he presumed was the armory and the way they looked at his superior compared to the more encouraging nods he received. After all, he was sure he'd be miffed about the scene in the Lord's room too, if he were the armored man. Really, he'd only caught hold of the fluffy beast by luck. He... He could only hope that it would prove to be a handful that he could keep a hold on. He'd do it, though. He'd do it and he'd succeed and earn the Lord's favor.

Inside the arms room, he caught the halberd with the same ease as a pitchfork, testing the weight of it in his hands. He nodded. "A shovel wouldn't be much good in a fight anyway, would it? A pitchfork, though... That might leave a mark." He nodded and leaned the weapon against the wall and took his time donning his armor, being careful to do it as correctly as he could despite the more senior guardian's quick departure. He could wait a minute. Better slow and thorough than fast and sloppy, he thought. His dad always did say that the shuckle beat the lopunny in that story.

Upon being introduced to his senior partner, his immediate impression was that of a slob, and possibly a drunkard at that. He wasn't exactly pleased, and looked at the other man unhappily, but bit his tongue before he could protest. When she -- Greta -- spoke, her words were at least reasonable and in any case, she would be hi senior for now. He nodded and introduced himself before she staggered off. "It's a pleasure meeting you, Greta. Faust's the name. Branson Faust, and you can call me as ya please. I expect a good day's work is all I could ask."

He got a clap on the shoulder and was addressed again as pup, and wondered if she had heard him or not. At least he knew where to find her. Before that, though, he had a bigger issue on his hands. Would the little brown pokemon listen to him at all? He cast around for an area out of the way and as unremarkable as he could find. He didn't want to embarrass himself when he released the pokemon to get acquainted.

The ball opened in a flurry of brown fur, and the eevee was before him, and he had the strangest feeling that it was himself who was being judged rather than the other way around. He waited quietly until the eevee sniffed and turned to clean its tail in what appeared to be disdain. His? Her? It looked like no pokemon he'd seen before, and he wasn't keen to get it riled up by checking its nethers... He. It had to be a boy. No girl would cause such a ruckus, rightly!

"You're a real Duke, aren't you? Look, we've got to work together now. I'm your handler, and you're my pokemon and we're gonna be knights... Hey -- Hey, listen!"

The eevee, who had entirely ignored her new handler except for an ear twitch of amusement at what she took as her new name, leapt up and onto his shoulder, swatting him in the face smartly with her tail for calling her a boy, and looked around. No doubt she was planning something like the debacle in the Lord's chambers. Branson's hands closed around her middle and lifted her off. He sighed.

"This is gonna be a long road ahead, isn't it?"

She looked him square in the eye and bit down on the meat of his hand. He yelped and dropped her. The pokemon landed neatly on her feet and gave him an excellent view of her bottom before taking up her perch again on his shoulder, to his annoyance.

"We'll figure this out later. Come on, Duke."

Red light, and the eevee had submitted to the ball. Branson went to find Greta before she left without him.

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


user posted image-- user posted image --user posted image
Branson - - + - - Rohesia
« Pr & Tr » - - * * * - - « Pr & Tr »

(Sprites by Mackay)
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Old Characters: Tobias Middleton & Travels, Gineva Winstret & Travels

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Gryphon
 Posted: Aug 16 2013, 09:16 AM
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dyslexic chicken
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Total Posts: 253
Member No. 741
Joined on 18-December 12.


Characters:
Adrian Haverick

Awards: None


.7 EXP and whooo~! Sorry this took me eleven forevers and HAPPY EARLY BIRTHDAY =D

--

Branson would meet up with Greta, waiting exactly where she had promised she would be. She was leaning against the front door at the entrance to the barracks, eyes closed and arms crossed over her chest, face cleared of emotion as though managing, somehow, to fall asleep like that. She could have been a statue but for the slow, steady rhythm of her breathing; she didn't twitch as he made his way down the hallway, her wild hair twisting in a gnarled mane around her round face. She wouldn't move until he had nearly reached her, and then, all at once, she jerked upright with a grunt, glancing up at him with her round, dark eyes.

"Ey, good then, you're ready to go. Off we get!" There was a business-like briskness to the way she spoke to him.

She threw open the door and walked out into the brilliant summer sunshine- a glaring contrast to the muted dimness within the baracks. The summer sunlight glinted off her steel plate armor with painful brightness. It was nearing noon, now, and a pleasant breeze had kicked up, bringing with it the sharp smell of the evergreen forests surrounding the alpine city. Greta walked with a confident swagger, her hands on her wide hips, her eyes scanning the streets she patrolled.

The roads of Harper's Pass weren't empty, but they may as well have been. No one bothered the Guardians walking with a purpose down the cobblestone streets- a few nodded or waved to Greta, and got gregarious greetings in response, but for the most part, the merchants and common folk took it on themselves to get out of their way. Greta might have been far from a pretty woman, and perhaps a bit lax in many of the qualities most people would look for in an upstanding Guardian, but at least she seemed to command a degree of respect out here on the roads of the Pass.

They wound through the streets, making their way generally northward- although they were forced to detour around the silent, secretive stone giant of the ancient temple at the city's center. They didn't get close enough to it to get a good look at it, really. They got merely glimpses of the peaks and gables of its massive roof between or above more modern city structures, but the contrast in its build- the weathered, yellowed stone, the darkened mortar, the first signs of cracking and decay- were evident even from a distance. Around it, the shopfronts and homes looked newer and brighter in comparison- their corners sharper, their stones smoother-cut. And the openness of the city's carefully-build shops, with their glass windows and wooden doors wide open to the warm summer air, further contrasted the closed, stifled mystery of the sealed temple; the discordance between its alien nature and the humble city's mundane proceedings made it more captivating, stranger.

Of course, Greta- and everyone else on the streets, it seemed- were far too used to the ancient structure to pay it any mind. They navigated around its inconvenient bulk and continued towards the northern end of Harper- where the massive Tower stood, set into the mountains, a stone's throw from where the gates to the roads beyond Harper lay. That structure, they wouldn't get close enough to see in detail; nor the scattered graves at its feet.

It seemed Greta knew the shortcuts, the efficient ways to move from one end of the city to the next; they cut through roads between pale stone buildings so narrow they were barely more than backstreet alleys and backtracked around the center of the market district to avoid the lunch hour crowds that would slow them down. The metal clatter of Greta's armor bustling as she walked and the clipped tattoo of her boots on the cobblestones echoed in the narrow streets. It gave her slightly-clumsy stride a significantly more authoritative air.

It took a half hour to get from the barracks to the sentry post, and Greta didn't exactly fill the minutes with conversation. She might have been a bit hung over, come to think of it, but at least she wasn't unpleasant about it- just not peppy or talkative. If Branson had questions or comments, she would answer, but it was clear she wasn't jumping head-first into this whole mentor business.

They left the merchant district behind, and then the rows of residential homes. A few businesses- a cheap inn, a warehouse, a pungent tannery close enough to them that it was difficult to ignore the smell- stood in the northernmost streets; these buildings were older, though not close to the ancient age of the Temple or the Tower. But once these buildings fell behind them, they were on the empty road North, and the sprawling infrastructure of Harper's Pass spread out behind their backs. Before them was the rest of the world.

At long last, the sentry post had appeared, a stone archway proudly built at the inception of the route into the mountains. A long, empty, dirt road stretched northward, disappearing quickly into the dense pine forests, reappearing only as a faint pale scar above the treeline of the nearest mountain peak. The ragged teeth of the northern mountains reached proudly into the pale sky beyond the city limits, snowy cliffs glittering in the summer sunlight, dark forests hiding the creatures that prowled beneath their branches- hints of a feral world beyond the reach of Harper, beyond the laws of the kingdom. The archway itself was sturdy and strong, broad enough for the largest cart to pass underneath, a monument to the physical barrier between Harper and the lands beyond.

To the left of the archway, a small, wooden cottage stood, squat and humble but obviously well-cared-for. That would be where the sentry Guardians would stay, safe from inclement weather but able to easily see out of the broad glass windows to whatever events passed just outside. It was dark inside the small building; there wasn't much to see but the barest hint of movement through the window facing the city as the senior Guardian and her new charge approached. The door was open just a crack, they would be able to see as they walked closer. A handful of Spearow had perched on the roof; as they walked closer, the small birds took off, flapping away on short, rust-colored wings. In the distance, a pair of courting Murkrow spiraled around each other, silhouettes against the pale blue sky. Nothing else moved, excepting the wind through the branches of the nearby pines.

"So, this is the post," Greta said dispassionately, gesturing to the archway and the road beyond. "Not much to it but to keep an eye on who comes in and goes out. Like I said- boring work, but if something goes foul on your shift, pup, you get skinned. You could probably handle it on your own- but if something were to happen, for the first time in years- well, I wouldn't like to leave you on your own with it." She shrugged, efficient and brisk. "Anyway. There're just a few rules for this sorta work, alright? First off- no fooling off on shift. No drinking, no games, no girls visiting you while you're on duty." She shot him a level gaze as she trotted ahead of him, closing the distance to the small shack. "You seem like a good lad. But you're young. And you wouldn't be th' first young buck to make a stupid decision the moment responsibility falls on your shoulders, hmm."

She pushed open the door to the little cottage. "The second thing is-"

A slice of sunlight fell across the floor of the dark, quiet little building, and flowed across the scene which lay within.

It was a small, humble, but attractive space, with a wooden desk and a pair of carefully carved chairs. But the decor was incidental, almost impossible to focus on. A large, solidly-built human figure in steel plate armor was sprawled out on the floor, twisted and limp and lifeless; his guantletted hand clutched the leather-wrapped hilt of a sword. A sheen of dark blood pooled beneath him; it was centered at his head, smeared and stained across the wooden floor. His feet were to the door, his face pressed against the floorboards. The hand not wrapped around the sword had been reaching for a pokeball, but he had lost his grip on that before he had gone. His fingers graced the small, red-and-white sphere, but it lay unopened on the floor.

Hunching over him was a slight, dark figure, black hair tumbling into her face as she had crouched by the twisted figure. She jerked upright the moment the door opened, startled by the sudden appearance of the Guardians, dark eyes wide in her fine-boned face. She looked young- though not much younger than Branson himself, or perhaps about his age- and fragile, and she moved like a burned cat when the Guardians appeared. Her clothes were dyed black and purple, dark enough to blend into the shadows inside the dim cabin. Her delicate hands were wrapped around a plump leather pouch that she pulled in close to her body; her fingers were tinged red with the fallen Guardian's blood. At her feet, two Pokemon- a gray-blue feline languidly stretched out on the floor and a orange fox cautiously standing guard- were immediately on alert, fur bristling and teeth bared.

The cat arched his back and hissed, eyes darting from one intruder to the next. The fox spread his fan-like tail in what looked like a threat display, eyes glittering in the sudden cascade of sunlight.

Was this the Guardian's murderer, or simply an opportunist who had somehow discovered the looting opportunity?

"ERECK!" Greta's voice was a dragon's roar of fury and grief- but she didn't waste time inspecting the body of her old comrade. That much blood didn't come out of a living man- and it was dark and congealed; the injury that had felled him had happened a while back. There was nothing more she could do for Ereck except for giving him justice.

Without hesitating, she drew her sword- a short but impressive steel blade, simple and well forged, without ornamentation- and lunged forward, growling a gutteral challenge to the rogue. "Deal with the pokemon," she snarled over her shoulder, at Branson, as she pushed her advantage, seeking to back the rogue up against the far wall of the small building. The girl pulled two long, twisted daggers from her belt and glared at the broader, more muscular woman in what seemed to be a silent challenge.

Meanwhile, the two pokemon moved gracefully on soft, delicate feet and darted, low and aggressive, towards Branson, their long white teeth bared and Growling their own challenge in his direction.


Encounter!

Rogue Girl.
- May have killed Ereck the Guardian
- Armed with two daggers
- Fine, ready to fight.

http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/431glameow.png http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/e335252.gif Lv 03
- Attacking Branson
- Fine, ready to fight.

http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/37vulpix.png http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/e335251.gif Lv 03
- Attacking Branson
- Fine, ready to fight.

Allies

Greta
- Armed with a short sword
- Attacking the rogue girl
- Fine, ready to fight.

--------------------
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Rosalie
 Posted: Sep 16 2013, 09:25 AM
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It's a box of spiders.
*******
Admin
Total Posts: 2294
Member No. 1
Joined on 19-March 10.


Characters:
Branson Faust, Rohesia Clements

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2. and no worries; i take twenty two forevers http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/Emoticons/13.png
;_; my work internet ate my first version of this. bear with me if it's awful.

Note; I'm referring to The Duke as female, but Branson still thinks she's a boy.

Branson nodded to Greta pleasantly when they met, and fell into place beside-and-slightly-behind the senior guardian. It quickly became apparent that she was a rather well known figure in the city, and in an effort to be friendly and to learn a little about the Pass he nodded to a few people who met his eye, returned greetings, and introduced himself to people that Greta paid particular attention to as best he could. They weren't stopping to chat, but the sheer number of people living in the city was intimidating. He prefered to have some potential friends in the crowds.

It passed the time rather admirably until they skirted the great temple. He had only seen it once or twice in his life, and it had the same effect on him each time. He hunched his shoulders in his armor, as though that could defend him from the unnatural scale and weight of its presence. Harperians hadn't built it, according to his ma, and he might have been awed by it if the scary stories they'd traded as children hadn't been wired in. It was a behemoth, and inescapable, and he would become accustomed to it eventually and laugh about the tales (and maybe scare the next generation with some -- why not!), but here and now today he felt very like a rattata under a Luxray's eye.

He didn't totally relax until they were well past the monument and all but the tip had been lost to the warren of narrow streets and hopelessly confusing shortcuts that Greta navigated so deftly. He tried to mark their route with landmarks, but too quickly the stone-or-timber walls and half-cobbled or hard packed roads blended together. He stuck close to the woman instead until they emerged into the city's sprawl of outer lands. The soil wasn't so good here, o the farmsteads were small, but he noticed many more barns and coops for livestock than the little town he called home farther to the south of the Pass where to ground wasn't quite so stony. He smiled a little sadly as an empty-headed miltank cow lowed at their passing. They looked like pokemon, but the spark was gone.

Almost as soon as that comfort had appeared, it vanished as they entered the heavily forested route up to the mountain pass itself. He could have sworn he felt the air growing more crisp as they walked, though it was almost certainly his imagination. It was still late summer, and the cold shouldn't descend on the north just yet. The twisted and densely growing pines loomed over the pair -- a marked difference from the broad leafs near his home and one that he wasn't sure was positive (or negative, really, but it did make it harder for trouble to move quickly off the path).

He smiled when their road opened up again to the post, and exaggerated a mock-sadness face when Greta told him the rules. It quickly faded when she gave him that side long glance and admonished his youth. He promptly replaced it with a demure, "Yes, Ma'am. No drinks, no gals, no goofin'."

He resisted the urge to ask if barley water was okay.

The cheerful mood vanished like mist in the sun when the door swung open and the stench of congealing blood rose to meet them. Branson's head seemed to float a little, thrown by how similar it was to the smell of any slaughterhouse, but this was no animal. The knowledge set a lead weight in his gut that rooted him to the spot. The feeling was so peculiar paired with the light headedness that he felt his gorge rise. He gulped the bile back down. It was like time had stopped in the heartbeat before Greta's roar and he noticed in obscene detail the scale armor, well used, the clean steel of his weapon. His boots. His broad shoulders. The blood, as deep and red as the rubies his mother sometimes wore to the church when she wanted to feel less a farmer's wife and more a lady despite her rough clothes. His... what had once been his head. Flattened, broken. He thought he might have seen an ear a few inches apart from its natural place. The hair, so matted with blood. Here and there, glimmers of bone white skull.

"ERECK!"

Everything happened at once. Greta lunged away, pokemon were charging for him. He couldn't get to his halberd in time and anyway there wasn't enough room inside for him to swing it like a harvest scythe and he didn't think about it until it was too late to move but the pokemon were closing in and he had no knife at his belt and no whip to his hand and these weren't farm pokemon anyway to be cowed and reminded of themselves in a frenzy he had nothing but his armor he had noth-

His fingers brushed accidentally across The Duke's ball. He fumbled in a lightning strike of clarity and threw it, releasing the eevee and losing track of her ball as it rolled into a corner of the room. He wasn't sure why he had thrown it and now was not the time to care. fingers scrabbled at his neck for the pokecard and he activated it and squinted hard at the compact words. He had to read, and read fast. Faster than he'd ever been able to read before. But the enemies, although young, were closing in and there wasn't time.

He shouted the first thing that came to mind and prayed that the normal type was as clever and elusive as she had seemed in the Lord's cabin. "DUKE! Hold them off!"



For her part, The Duke had landed quite primly on her paws, in haughty disdain of the flurry of action. A lady had to make her entrance. Almost lazily, the unassuming brown creature twitched her tail and sniffed the air, looking from firey fox to petty cat. She winked, fluffing her mane and posturing to the latter rather attractively while she kept an eye on the fox.

As soon as the attract took hold, Duke leapt in a puff of fur and back, almost behind Branson. Balls of coloured light gathered around her, and she stalked in a semicircle, aiming to either lead the pair away into a better position where neither could get behind her easily or to circle behind them. She shot off the balls with a burst of force, one at a time and with careful aim that said that it wasn't the first time she had used the move. There was none of the burst release that was common with many other pokemon, where perhaps four of the orbs hit the target. The Duke was all control and calculated aim. If they missed, it wouldn't be because of her inaptitude.

Following that, her shape blurred for a moment and then four eevee stood in her place instead of one with the use of a double team. She and all three of her illusory copies raised their muzzles to the roof and called out a long, ringing, painful cry that rebounded from the rafters down to the combatants and would make her fresh-faced handler flinch. The echoed voice would hopefully injure the two other pokemon as well.



Summary:
Branson... fumbles around somewhat uselessly for his first fight. He'll get better with some practice, promise.

The Duke
-Attract on the glameow fresh out of the ball
-Tries to leap to better ground, uses Hidden Power and aims it carefully.
-Double Team
- Echoed Voice on both pokemon if she can.

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


user posted image-- user posted image --user posted image
Branson - - + - - Rohesia
« Pr & Tr » - - * * * - - « Pr & Tr »

(Sprites by Mackay)
Post Count Rewards
Old Characters: Tobias Middleton & Travels, Gineva Winstret & Travels

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Gryphon
 Posted: Sep 25 2013, 07:44 PM
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dyslexic chicken
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Members
Total Posts: 253
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Joined on 18-December 12.


Characters:
Adrian Haverick

Awards: None


.7 EXP, and battle time!
(After some internal debate,) flashy, sharp, self-contained, and exacting little Duke gets an Electric Hidden Power, medium strength.

--

Vulpix and Glameow made it across the small space in a matter of moments, leaving pawprint tracks of cool, dark blood in their wakes, and were only stopped a couple of yards from their intended target by the flash of light that signaled the Duke's entrance.

The two Pokemon regarded the new arrival onto the scene with a mixture of suspicion and anticipation, the fur rising along their spines and their ears pressing back aggressively as their charge broke around the enemy Eevee. Glameow, low and swift, rushed to the Duke's right, aiming to get around her and attack the larger, more intimidating human figure that stood behind her- but something in the way she looked at him, and the very pretty way the thick fur of her ruff lay around her neck, and the coquettish angle of her long ears, made him hesitate mid-step, dark eyes widening slightly, fixed on the little brown creature. He felt the thrill of the battle drain from him; his heart was hammering, his stomach twisting as he watched the dim light glitter off the Eevee's dark eyes.

She was- well. She was quite pretty.

If Vulpix noticed the exchange between the other Pokemon- or even took stock of Glameow's frozen posture and vacant expression- she didn't show it. She was all unbridled aggression packed into a small, soft shape. She lifted her lips to show long white teeth to her opponent, flickering lines of fire lapping out between them as her jaws filled with embers. The Duke was already moving back in a sudden, cat-like jolt; Vulpix spat the Ember attack after her. The tiny sparks of fire skittered across the floor, cracking and sizzling, spraying about the Eevee's small paws and short legs and singing her fur; the smell of burning pelt filled the cramped space.

Glameow's back arched in annoyance as his ally attacked the pretty little female before she had even done anything to them; Vulpix was backing the Eevee up against the wall, spraying her with fire, hostility plain in every line of her body, and Glameow wanted to intervene, but wasn't sure how. Could he just... stop his partner mid-attack? No- every muscle in his body protested against him doing that. The clashing of metal and the grunts and growls of fighting humans behind him reminded him that he was doing this for his Handler, and she would never want him to interfere with Vulpix's fighting.

The rogue girl had been bravely brandishing her weapons, looking ready for Greta's assault, but the Guardian's muscle and heft quickly overwhelmed the smaller fighter. After one overhand sweep with Greta's short sword had knocked the rogue's hasty guard away, almost tearing one of her knives out of her hand and sending waves of sharp pain down the girl's arm as she struggled to hold her stance against the enormous force of the blow, the rogue hastened to disengage, scrambling back from the furious fighter of a woman. Her tactics would have to change if she were going to survive this fight- she couldn't win in a direct exchange of blows, but she had the advantage in dexterity and speed. She moved nimbly backwards, looking for an opening to close in and strike a weak spot with one of her daggers. But in the small space, there wasn't much room for the rogue to avoid the blurring, lashing sword. Greta was somewhat constrained in how wide her strikes could be, but the advantage granted to her by her sheer strength and the reach of her weapon seemed definitively greater than what edge her target could squeeze out of her smaller size and higher speed. The Guardian was intent on cornering the rogue, kicking furniture out of the way with her heavy leather boots and storming after her quicker, more agile foe.

Glameow glanced at the struggle of his Handler, wanting to support her but unsure how. She had sent him to attack Branson- but this Eevee was protecting the male Guardian, and Glameow didn't want to hurt her- she was lovely, and he was increasingly certain she was a kind Pokemon trapped in an unbalanced battle, and he couldn't think of a way of getting her to step aside without hurting her. He couldn't bring himself, in that moment, to harm her, or to betray his Handler. And so he simply hovered on the edge of the battle, tail lashing and one paw held up uncertainly, ready to act but unsure what to do, watching the Duke slink in an arc around them. Vulpix continued her advance, low and tense, cautious but ready to strike at a moment's opening.

When the sparkling, vermillion balls of Hidden Power spun out of nothingness around the Duke, Glameow danced backwards, letting Vulpix take the entirety of the attack. She rushed to the left, scrambling to avoid the brunt of the attack, but although a few of the balls of light and energy flashed past her in brilliant, flickering beams to fade out in the dim shadows of the room, most of them slammed into her head and chest and flank, stunning her and drawing a yelp of pain and anxiety from the little creature.

The sight of his teammate stumbling on her delicate paws struck something in Glameow, and at last, he intervened, jumping forward and concentrating on growing energy into a ball of light inside his body. When he opened his mouth as wide as he could, the light was emitted for a brief, blinding flash, dazzling the Duke; she shut her eyes quickly, colours and blotches of black dancing in her vision despite how tightly her eyelids were squeezed shut.

Glameow's mouth shut and his tail curled around his paws, hoping that the Flash attack would stop the battle; to his dismay, however, the little Eevee responded with a Double Team, splitting into a dizzling team of identical Pokemon. Glameow danced backward again, still torn between attacking and protecting the Duke.

Vulpix had no such conflicts, and immediately struck out against the Eevee. Dark, flickering fires, casting blue and purple light in patterns across the wood floor, circled around the little Fire-type in a tight, rapid spiral. Then they arced out, swiftly flying in multiple directions, glimmering black and blue. Each tiny Will o'Wisp glowed so hot that Branson, and the fighting women on the other side of the room, would be able to feel the radiant heat from them. Small flares of fire shot through the Double Team copies, and one brushed past the Duke herself, leaving a dark, painful burn beneath her soft fur.

The sonic blast from the retaliatory Echoed Voice slammed into the rogue's Pokemon, the vibrations shivering through their bodies and the sound thundering in their ears and heads. Glameow cried out and shook his head, trying to dislodge the sound; Vulpix stumbled backwards, whimpering. She barely managed to stay on her paws, swaying slightly as the ringing in her ears threw off her balance.

Meanwhile, after a long minute of struggling to stay out from under the business end of her enemy's sword, the rogue girl finally felt her back press against the wall and saw Greta's stout form rushing towards her, sword at bear, eyes wide. She held her daggers, crossed, over her head, protecting herself as well as she could, desperate to hold her guard against the force of the swordwoman's downward swing.

But when the sword swung down at her, crashing with an echoing CLANG against the knife, the force was more than the girl's body could take- and her wrist bent backwards with an audible snap.

The knife in her right hand tumbled from her suddenly-lax fingers, clattering to the floor; she cried out, unconsciously dropped the knife from her good hand, and cradled her wrist, the pulses of pain traveling up her arm blinding her to the danger of the situation she was still in.

The sound caught Glameow's attention immediately- Vulpix was still glowering at Eevee, intent on taking the impudent little Pokemon down.

Greta grabbed the girl by the front of the long, dark tunic she wore, and shoved her back against the wall with enough force to knock the air out of her lungs. The lines in her face darkened with anger and hatred. "Finish it up back there, Faust!" she shouted, not bothering to glance over her shoulder to see how the new kid was holding up. She'd heard the Echoed voice and the rest of the clatter from the battle; she knew he must have been holding his own against the rogue's modest team.

Glameow finally settled on a course of action- his Handler was in immediate danger, and he needed to be at hand to rescue her. Quickly, he retreated back from the Duke, and rushed as quickly as he could towards Greta, intending to Cut at the back of her leg, hopefully through the thick boot and into the muscle and tendons of her leg.

Meanwhile, Vulpix struck out- this time, using a sort of rudimentary psychic power lingering somewhere in the recesses of the little fox's mind. The Disable attack struck out like a mental binding, striking against the muscle memory of the Duke's most recent attack, keeping her from being able to execute her Echoed Voice.


--

The Battle Continues!

Branson:
-- Fine

http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/133eevee.png http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/e335251.gif Lv 05
-- Hurt by Ember; burned by Will o'Wisp.
-- Accuracy lowered by one stage
-- Evasion increased by one stage

Enemies:

Rogue Girl:
-- Broken wrist. Unarmed. Pinned against the wall by Greta; disabled.

http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/37vulpix.png http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/e335251.gif Lv 03
-- Hurt by Hidden Power and Echoed Voice. Less than a quarter of her energy remains.
-- Intent on defeating the Duke.

http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/431glameow.png http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/e335252.gif Lv 03
-- In love with the Duke. Has difficulty concentrating on the battle and hesitates to hurt her.
-- Hurt by Echoed Voice
-- Attacking Greta

Allies:

Greta:
-- Fine; a little tired.
-- Pinning the rogue girl against the wall.

--------------------
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Rosalie
 Posted: Nov 15 2013, 11:08 PM
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It's a box of spiders.
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3. god i'm so bad at this timeliness thing.

The Duke hissed furiously at the burn. She was decidedly displeased by the scent of burned fur from her chest and someone was going to pay for it. Namely, the useless rogue girl's fire fox. The scrawny pokemon were about as likely to defeat the Lord's hounds as their human was to kill the guard. The very idea was laughable, and she wondered if her own lackwit human had caught onto that something here smelt of fish. Or anyway, it did to her nose. There was other business at hand for the moment, however. Without a single glance to her handler for instruction, the eevee let her eyes well up with tears after a quick calculating glance at the glameow, and made a show of bawling right then and there on the battlefield. Her fake tears might not be terribly refined, but they worked for a young pokemon (if you could believe them past her typical aplomb).

Somewhat frustrated by the blocking of one of her more tricky ranged moves, she thought fast. Much as she was loathe to lower herself to direct combat, she knew her best chance of finishing the skirmish quickly would be her facade, given the burn. It had some poetry, as revenge went, even though it would likely muss her fur. That new human she'd allowed to catch her (she studiously refused to consider the alternative as an option) had better be prepared to clean up. Blood didn't suit her. The fake tears vanished along with her need for a distraction in a flash as she shook herself, just a bit, forcing away a wince and establishing herself. Calm, composed, and supremely confident, every last hair fell into place as she raised herself with great dignity and stalked forward, aiming between the fire type and the turning cat. The moment she got up against the fox, she would suddenly snap the act and unsheath claws and bare teeth. If the glameow got near, she'd kick him. Thoroughly.

Hm. At least things were shaping up to be interesting. The human was useless, but maybe she'd stick around yet.


Branson realised quickly that there was no way in all of the Arcean Realms that he was going to get enough information fast enough to be remotely useful and that, perhaps slightly more slowly, the Duke was holding his own with a measure of confidence that impressed the ex-farmhand. For a minute he just stood and watched the chaos, uncertain how or where he could... well, remotely be of use in the melee. He was about to settle on trying to save what remained of the body before the pokemon battle ruined it farther when he saw the glameow turn and make for Greta. He registered that the back of her legs, where her armor joined, looked protected by little more than thick leather. He didn't trust the hides to stand up to a pokemon attack.

He propelled himself forward across the slippery floorboards grimly, tugging his small shield bearing the newly earned guardian insignia from his forearm into his hand where it would be of better use and tried to block the cat -- bash it with the shield, defend Greta, make it hesitate... he wasn't actually sure what he was hoping to achieve, really, only that he ought to do something about the situation. The girl's pokemon looked so young that he was reluctant to actively hurt them. He did the best he could and cried out, "Guardswoman, behind you! The cat!"

He would have to catch and restrain the murderess probably if Greta let go to dodge, but she wasn't going to get away. No one murdered one of his newfound kinsmen and got away with it on his watch. He'd make sure of it!

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


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Branson - - + - - Rohesia
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Grimm
 Posted: Nov 24 2013, 09:31 PM
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Evil, Sadistic Custard.
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[.7 for ya. Gryph got so many requests I'll take this one, since it's just fighting. http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/Emoticons/20.png]

---

The burns certainly hurt, but the Duke's indignation bore her attack through. She moved just fast enough that the glameow caught her tears out of the corner of his eyes, and for a moment he hesitated in his escape. It was only with utmost reluctance that he launched himself away to protect his handler.

That left eevee and vulpix to have at one another. The fire-type was taken aback by the sudden poise her opponent adopted, unsure of how to proceed...and in that hesitation the Duke lashed out, her attack strong and unrelenting, her claws slashing into Vulpix's flank. The fox shrieked in pain and tried to claw back, but the Duke was faster. She batted the pathetic attempt at retaliation away with a quick and decisive flick of her tail, almost contemptuously, before slapping the fire-type with that same tail so the mouth full of little teeth couldn't be aimed at her.

Vulpix staggered off, collapsing on all four. She struggled to get up, but she wasn't going to be doing any fighting anytime soon. The Duke snarled at her before turning her attention to the glameow, who like a flash had come to the senior Guardian's legs.

--The senior Guardian who had decided to take no crap today and shifted her old on the rogue girl so that she was grabbing her chin when she heard Branson's warning cry. She slammed the girl's head against the wall with a dull, sickening thud, the force measured just so to disorientate her, flip her over her back with the same hold and the same face, and with the free arm and leg swiped the ground where she had caught the gray blur coming from.

The back of Greta's thick calf slammed against Glameow's face, sending the cat flying with a yowl. The girl, now lying on her back on the ground and groaning, tried to get up. Greta rewarded her effort by stepping on the injured wrist. The girl screamed raggedly and spasmed, but then the swordswoman lifted her foot and she rolled over, curling into a ball, staying still. Exactly what Greta had wanted.

Scowling fiercely, the Senior Guardian brandished her blade at the glameow, who had rolled to his feet and was studying the battlefield with wild eyes. He was hunched over in a ready-to-pounce posture, but one could easily see that he knew the situation wasn't looking good for him.

Greta pointed her sword at the cat. "Finish it," she said coldly, then knelt down and grabbed at the girl's tunic, dragging her to lie face-up again. In the gloom, her eyes glimmered. The rogue swallowed. "Then come over here, Faust. I can give ye a rundown 'bout interrogations."


---

http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/37vulpix.png http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/e335251.gif Lv. 03

-Defeated from boosted Facade (which was also powered up by Adaptability)
-Barely holding onto consciousness, but unable to fight

http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/431glameow.png http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/e335252.gif Lv. 05

-Spooked from being trapped
-Attracted to the Duke
-Hurt by Echoed Voice
-Sp. Def lowered by (2) stages via Fake Tears

-0-

http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/133eevee.png http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/e335251.gif Lv. 05

-Hurt by Ember; burned by Will-o-Wisp
-Accuracy and Evasion lowered by (1) stage each
-Able to battle

---

Your battle exp gain will be collected once you've figured out what you wanna do with the glameow. =D

--------------------
Logan Quengrace (Guardian)

Matthew Newgrange (Handler)

Serena Chalice (Handler)

Character Sprites Created by Mackay and Khaleesi!
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Rosalie
 Posted: Jan 1 2014, 12:15 PM
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4~


Branson flinched at the brutal treatment of the rogue, unaccustomed to such... coarse methods. It matched just fine with what he'd seen of Greta so far, but the rogue was awfully young, and didn't look much up to a fight anyway. He hesitated to see what his rather unpredictable pokemon would do, and was somewhat surprised when she moved to the guardswoman's order to 'finish it.' However, the small brown fluffball sniffed at the woman, turned her nose up, and sat beside the cornered cat to daintily clean her coat and paws of blood in a way that did an admirable job of showcasing her pride, her claws, and her teeth. She was not inclined to attack the other pokemon any longer, that was clear, but nor was she going to let it run off. She summoned one glowing ball of her hidden power to hover crackling above her head, just in case.


The man glanced over at glameow, who looked less than hopeful, and back to Greta and the rogue who was in much the same position, only without a protector. The Duke would be more use with the pokemon than he would -- he had proven that already -- so he skirted the blood and the body (the longer he looked the more it held a morbid fascination for him; a girl could do that, and in death it was the same as any dead pokemon) to stand at Greta's side. He put an arm out to stop her from getting any closer to the girl. The Duke had the right of things, he thought.

"No. You've hurt her bad enough now. We're Guardians, not highwaymen. I won't let you. If she killed him, I want to know how and why as bad as you, but this in't the way. My ma always taught me to catch combees with honey and tame the violent pokemon with patience, not more violence, and I intend to live by her." The young man didn't look away, and there was steel in his eye as he metaphorically dug his heels in for a battle of wills. In his hometown, he could out-stubborn almost anyone besides his father and it hadn't failed him yet. His heart beat fast but not wildly as he defied his superior and his principles warred, but his choice was perfectly clear.

He just really hoped the girl would stay down.



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


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Branson - - + - - Rohesia
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Grimm
 Posted: Jan 5 2014, 07:27 PM
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Evil, Sadistic Custard.
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[.6 aaaaand let's see where the stubbornness gets Branson, eh? http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/Emoticons/28.png]

---

For the longest moment, everything in that room held still. Even the girl on the floor, as though she could sense what was going on above her although her eyes were shut tight, held her breath. The glameow in the corner backed away very slowly, very quietly, glancing at his handler every now and again but not brave enough to dart over to her. His eyes kept returning to the Duke instead, giving her an almost pleading, uncertain look. The Attract was still in effect, though it had worn off now and was replaced by fear as he realized that the little brown fluff showing off her claws and her teeth had defeated his vulpix teammate.

But the most thunderous creature in the room was still, by far, Greta.

She looked at the arm Branson had thrust towards her like it was a dead, rotting fish, then she looked directly at him. He could see all her fury there, concentrated into two pinpoints of hatred behind squinted eyelids. Her jaw twitched, her shoulders heaved as she breathed in and out like an agitated bouffalant that was just barely hanging on to its temper. It would be with a sudden flash that Branson remembered Greta still had her sword, and one must wonder if she was going to cut him down where he stood for having defied her. With such fury in her eyes, it was hard to tell what she was capable of.

Branson can count the time with his heartbeat, and it was twenty counts later that Greta finally moved. She stepped forward half a step, and quicker than his reflexes can counter smacked him in the nose with the meaty part of her palm. The pain made his eyes water, sent him staggering away, but in the meantime the older Guardian had sheathed her sword. The blow had been measured so that it only hurt and not break his nose or make him bleed; he would be fine.

Greta spared no more words for Branson. Instead she knelt and barked, "Girl, turn around." And, when she got no answer, she threatened, "I don't feel too charitable right now. So ye either turn, or I'll do it for ye. And it ain't gonna be harmless."

Swallowing, almost sobbing--oh, well...definitely sobbing--the girl slowly rolled to her backs. Her teary eyes stared up at Greta, terrified, though they darted at least once to Branson in a pleading manner. But Greta slapped her face (lightly) to keep her attention on her. "Right here, urchin. I'll ask ye couple o' questions, and you answer, with all the honesty y'can manage in yer filthy outlaw body, got it?"

Silence. But the girl nodded emphatically. The hard line of Greta's shoulders relaxed a fraction. She glanced at Branson, snapped, "Come o'er here," if he had not already done so, and then turned her full attention to their query. "Now. How d'you come here?"

"This is- This is my usual sleeping spot!" blurted the rogue. She paled when Greta scowled thunderously. <span class="hime">"I- I- I mean I slept in a small abandoned cottage a bit- a bit west of here. I swear, I do. You can find my things there, I swear-"


"All right, I'll believe that," Greta broke in impatiently. "And?"

"W-Well, my vulpix l-l-led me here t-today. And, and I thought I'd...I'd take something for myself."

Greta was silent for another long, long time. Then she stood up, staggered back, and leaned against the wall tiredly. Her eyes strayed to the dead body of Guardian Ereck, and with a grumble of "Guard the girl" she lumbered over to where his head lay. The damage had been dealt to the spot by a battleaxe, and it made his brain a sticky mess on the floor. She did not flinch from the gore, instead kneeling by his head and closing the still-whole eye with her fingers. Branson could not hear clearly, but she seemed to be murmuring a prayer in a very old northern tongue.

Then the grieving was over. Greta heaved herself to her feet and scowled at the rogue. "Looting a Guardian's still considered stealing," she spat. "Not to mention disrespectful to the dead. Be glad you didn't take nothin', girl. Otherwise, even if Doughboy o'er there begs fer your life, I would've taken those skinny fingers of yours with my sword. FAUST!"

The last word was barked, and when Branson had gotten to his feet Greta jerked her chin. "Ready the ropes," she said curtly, gesturing to a corner of the room where a small heap of it was. She answered the girl's frightened look with a dark one of her own and released a pokemon from one of the spheres on her belt.

A musharna appeared, floating in thin air. She seemed asleep, but her sorrowful Ah reverberated through all of their minds. Then she turned to the girl, without speaking, and opened her eyes, looking straight at her.

Five seconds later, the girl was asleep.

Greta helped Branson with setting the rogue's injured wrist before tying her arms up at the elbows, so it wouldn't agitate her wound. Then she ordered him to prop her up against the wall, went to find a cloth to cover Ereck's dead body up with, and went outside where she would be waiting for him.

When Branson came out, Greta turned. In the distance, heading away from them, was the shadow of some pokemon in flight. "I sent words," said Greta bluntly. "'Bout what happened here. There'll be a team sent to clean up this mess."

She looked down at her hand, which was holding a blood-flecked pokeball. It belonged to Ereck; she had taken it when she was standing up. "He used t'have an aggron," Greta said to no one in particular. "She died last year. Now this's all he's got. And he don't have any family."

The woman held the pokeball out towards Branson, palm up, offering it to him. "I can't bear the thought," Greta said with some difficulty. "So...keep this for him. And- Faust. Gotta say, thanks. I would've lost myself and done things to that girl if you hadn't stopped me."

She did not wait for him to finish whatever reply he had. Instead she shouldered past him into the cabin, where her musharna had finished putting the finicky glameow to sleep, and returned the cat and the vulpix to their respective pokeballs. These Greta took with her. Then she got out and jerked her chin north, eyes stormy.

"I've got a hunch," she said frostily. "Let's go check it out."</span>

---

And Finally...

http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/133eevee.png http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/e335251.gif Lv. 05
+4 for defeating Vulpix
+4 for "defeating" Glameow
= 8 EXP; level up!

3 EXP for Branson for winning a pokemon battle. We can work on the human-to-human one. http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/Emoticons/3.png He also leveled up, so add 3 egg counts to his egg!

Deerling obtained!

--------------------
Logan Quengrace (Guardian)

Matthew Newgrange (Handler)

Serena Chalice (Handler)

Character Sprites Created by Mackay and Khaleesi!
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Rosalie
 Posted: Feb 25 2014, 12:02 AM
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5! 6! 7!

Sweat trickled down Branson's neck as time stretched. He was curiously calm beneath the surface despite the tension as he waited for judgement to fall. Greta's stunning blow knocked him back several steps as he caught his balance and made noises of pain and held his nose. He shut his eyes tight for a minute and let it wash over him as he waited for the hollow pain in his nose to stop. By the time he'd recovered enough, Greta was barking at him to come closer, which he did with a reproachful look for the guardswoman and a sympathetic one for the girl. He knew enough not to interrupt the woman and push his luck, even as she fell again silent. He had only a nod for the order to guard their captive (not that she looked like she needed it), and bowed his own head in respect for the mutilated guard.

He mouthed a sorry to the girl behind Greta's back, but replied to his senior with only a crisp, "Aye, guardswoman." Branson dutifully gathered enough rope to bind the girl and blinked in surprise at the psychic. Such a gentle pokemon didn't seem to fit with the powerful woman, let alone one that seemed to calm in comparison. Had he thought about it, he'd have expected a tauros. He did as he was told without complaint or objection, and the thing of his would-have-been-comrade's death was too large for jokes or casual words and hung throughout the room for the man like a miasma. Branson held his breath as much as he could, hoping that he would not sicken.



In the corner, the Duke sauntered up to the other cat and bumped her head into his shoulder gently, and began to groom the anxious feline in a peculiarly motherly fashion that ran strongly against everything Branson had yet seen of her. All will be well. When she finished, she went to her boy and leapt to his offered arm and then onto his shoulder, where she settled like royalty.



Branson took one last look around for safety's sake, gathered his starter, and left the building to find Greta, letting the remainder of his breath whoosh free as he said, "What a mess." The Duke on his shoulder snorted at the sentiment, and what he meant was anyone's guess.

To Greta, he responded easily and with great care to keep himself as neutral as he could. "Aye, that's as good as summer rain."

When the pokeball was offered, he took it with some reverence and rubbed it between his palms, polishing away the dead man's blood until it shone again. "M'sorry, Greta. Ill treat him with as best the care I can... You were close, you and Ereck?"

But she had pushed past him and vanished again into the cabin. Branson frowned, but let it go as he followed her back in just in time to see her calling back the three pokemon. The furry normal type on his shoulder stiffened as the guardswoman pocketed the pokeballs, and he felt a growl vibrate from her feet into his shoulder and through his armor. Uh-oh. He reached up to catch her, but he wasn't so lucky as he had been in the Lord's home, and she slipped through his grasp like smoke to leap and land on the floorboards before his superior with a hiss.



She saw her take the balls, and she didn't like it. The truth had come out -- the girl wasn't a killer. Pokemon were not possessions. The Duke gathered her lightning balls of hidden power around herself and sent one shooting forward at the woman to circle the place she had tucked them away. Others followed like a swarm of angry bees around the steel clad woman and made her meaning perfectly clear. Pokeballs. Now. She would carry them, or her bumbling human would, but not the tauros-lady. Those pokemon would see their human again if she had a single thing to do with it. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Branson try to sneak up and catch her. He was pulling out her ball. One of her hidden power bots shot to his hand and he yelped in pain and dropped the red and white thing, which rolled out of his reach towards the eevee. Branson swore somewhere in the background. Something about bad timing.

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Carnivale
 Posted: Mar 1 2014, 11:16 PM
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[.7 for you. http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/Emoticons/8.png]

.

Greta's eyes narrowed dangerously at the Duke's aggression and she took a fighting stance, her hand landing on the hilt of her hip. She was ready to shear an ear or a head off the eevee regardless of the electric balls, but her musharna stepped in. Don't fight, she said hurriedly, the wisp of a word drifting down between them like a feather, hushed yet urgent. Greta gave her a look, and the musharna drifted closer, bumping shoulders with her. Don't fight, she repeated.

The effect wasn't instantaneous, but it took place all the same. Glowering at the Duke, Greta took her hand off the handle of her sword and the musharna retrieved the pokeballs she had confiscated from the rogue girl telekinetically and floated them over to Branson.

Keep them, your partner said, she murmured in his mind. Her voice alone caused some drowsiness already. Keep them.

"We'll turn them in at Harper's Passion later," said Greta, shouldering past Branson once more. This time there was no unfriendly abruptness to her movement, however. At least, not until she paused just outside of the door and looked back in, pinning the Duke with a sharp, grim stare.

But she said nothing threatening. All she did say was, "Guide 'im well." Then she gestured for Branson to follow her and they headed away from the cabin and...deeper into the mountains. Further towards Route One, going north.

The ground sloped up as they walked, the earth beneath them pebbly and crunching under their feet. Spring was coming, but it was not yet here. The sky hung neutral above their heads, dotted with clouds and endlessly blue. The musharna, still not yet introduced, bobbed along Greta's side. She, for her part, stormed forward with purpose, every fiber of her reeking with a barely-contained fury. The further she walked, the angrier she seemed, until she drew to an abrupt stop after half an hour straight of walking and banged her fist against a large pine near her.

Her back still turned to Branson, she made a wet, horrible noise that would take most people a few seconds to realize that it was a sob. A great, heaving sob - but only one. Rubbing her face with one hand, Greta pushed on, accepting no interruption from him (ignoring him) until they were at a small stream.

There, she bent down and splashed her face with the freezing water a few times before shaking herself like a dog. She stared past the creek and into the trees, unseeing for a moment, before looking to Branson. Her eyes were mostly clear.

"Route One's big," Greta grunted. "Lord Archer got rangers set up at some intervals. Ereck's one o' them. Was." She closed her eyes for a brief moment and shoved herself to her feet, scowling - but it was at herself. "Outposts keep in touch with each other. Yer a rookie, yer not supposed t'know this, Faust, but I think it's relevant. Recently we think something's fishy with the outpost north o' Ereck's. I don't wanta accuse a comrade of foul play at the drop offa hat, but..."

Greta put her hands on her hips and looked north. Her musharna tapped Branson's mind, murmuring for permission, before sending him a few "mind pictures." They depicted where they were, then forwarded further up, past a sudden steep slope, and then, just past that, a cabin stood. The cabin Branson saw was small and well-lit, and shadows of people moved in the windows. A zebstrika was tied to one of the posts outside.

Then the musharna withdrew, let Branson recover, and then nudged Greta when he was ready.

"Right." The woman scratched her head. "Grunt work, Faust. Get yerself up there to the cabin Alice - that's my musharna's name-" the psychic waved a paw at him, "-and see if anyone's in. If not, go back here and find me."

She didn't tell him what to do if there was people in there, having glared at the ground at her feet and grind the heel of her boots into the gravelly earth. Something about her stormy complexion made it seem a bad idea to ask questions.

Go, urged Alice, gently. Go.

--------------------
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Rosalie
 Posted: Apr 21 2014, 07:31 PM
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[rusty. so. rusty. ;-; i need to write more before i update to spare my people.]


The Duke gave the senior guardian a hard look when she mentioned turning in the pokeballs to some future people unknown and held the woman's gaze with a masterful contempt that belied her size. She topped the whole fiasco off by yawning in her face. Branson could have shaken her then and there, but the musharna giving him the pokeballs had his hands full for the moment. Just before he made to scoop up the tiny pokemon, she twitched her tail smugly and evaded his hands to scamper up and sit on his shoulder, claws in the joins of the armor for security. Of course she would. Branson sighed in defeat and let her be, now that the crisis seemed to be past.

The young guard turned the ball over and over in his hands as they walked, fingers running over the smooth surface and cleaning it of any blood or grime almost unconsciously. It was warm, but not the heat of the ponytas' balls back home, nor was it so light as he would have expected a flying pokemon or a bug to be, but not weighty like a pokemon from the earth. It held no aggron, that was for sure, but he was a little intimidated. He hadn't yet been able to exert any control over the eevee; why should the last pokemon of a murdered guardian listen to him for even a moment? Curiosity soon took over as he passed over the thought, and then concern for Greta as she made the horrible noise that was apparently some form of
ungodly sob. He went to her, pocketing the ball and attempted to put an arm across her shoulders, but the woman brushed him off like he was an insect and continued on.

He hesitated, just in confusion at her reactions to all of this. Greta was a powerful woman, yes, but so was his own mother (you only had to look at her sons to know it was true). His mam had never refused a comforting hand, though, nor had any girl in their small village. Not one of them would shoulder through alone like a shriveled old bachelor like this guardswoman was. He set his chin stubbornly and promised himself that as soon as they got the the bottom of this, he would lend her a comfort and that was the end of it.

He nodded to her instructions calmly and without hesitation let the psychic in -- a strange sensation, like a buzz before a yawn and a bit of a dizzying sensation for an instant -- to look through her metaphorical eyes. He didn't like the look of the zebstrika. He murmured a response to Greta as he regained his bearings with the departure of the psychic a bit more quietly than he had intended, "It's a bad business all around when there's a rotten one in the bunch. Got to get it out of the bushel before it ruins the batch..." He paused for a moment and smiled a bit, "That's a really strange feeling -- how do you ever get used to it? Nice to meet you Alice!"

But the musharna had taken a look at the guardswoman's face that Branson himself had chalked up solely to grief and ushered him forward, so he shrugged and did as he was bid. Hopefully he wouldn't be alone if that zebstrika caught sight of them.

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Grimm
 Posted: Apr 25 2014, 03:21 PM
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[.5 for you. Write more, write more.]

---

Spring hadn't left a phenomenal touch on the ancient pine forest. The ground above Branson's boots, cushioned with the pine leaves that had been left there when they were torn from the trees by winter storms, muffled his footsteps; aside from that noise, all he could hear--save for any made by the Duke, perhaps--was the distant calls of birds, and they only came every once in awhile. Otherwise the quietness was somewhere between peaceful and foreboding. Nothing graced Branson with its presence. Nothing will.

It was not a long walk before he saw the cabin in the distance. Alice had neither exaggerated nor understated it; the building was precisely as she had described it to him in her mental pictures, tiny and frugal even with just a cursory look. The major difference between what the musharna had given him and the real-life cabin was the lack of light--and of mount. Though the post the zebstrika was supposedly tied to was the same, it was not there.

When he came closer to investigate, Branson would see animal droppings and the telltale scruffing of hooves. Something had been here, and the thin trace of smoke rising from the cabin's small chimney suggested that it had not been too long since that time.

A knock on the door yielded no answer, though. But it was unlocked, if Branson bothered to lean his weight against it, which would cause it to swing right open on its well-oiled hinges and invite his eyes to a darkened room. Light from the windows illuminated some of it, but the shadows were deep and he can barely make out the far side of the one-room cabin. It didn't look the sort of place even a thief might have think inviting save for perhaps a rest spot. It was spartan, with one cot in a corner, a chest, a small wardrobe, a desk, a chair, and little else.

The desk was set directly beneath the window on the left side of the door when Branson came in, and it was messy, the chair pushed out of the way like whoever that had been there had been in a huge hurry to get out. A cursory glance without touching anything revealed a map spread out on the table--that of Harper's Pass, apparently, with tear holes in very specific spots like someone had been using it for throwing knife practices. Lifting it up, Branson would find another one, also of Harper's Pass, but this time with dotted lines drawn all over the streets. X-marks littered it. Another one, folded up, was of the forest off Route One. Ereck's cabin was marked, and what was presumably this cabin, along with several others, were equally marked and named. According to it, Branson was currently in Chelsea's outpost.

Out of the rest, some were notes--scrawled in barely legible handwriting, mentioning "drop points" and patrol schedules. Others looked like memos from the ranger's personal lodge. Unrest near the Pass, one said, dated to approximately two months ago. Another one, dated almost only a week ago, said, Possible danger to city. Sent request for permission to act to Lord Archer. Awaiting response.

No other note indicated that a response had been given, however.

That was all Branson would be able to find from the desk. Would he look around more, or would he head back down to find Greta? Perhaps the guardswoman would know something about what was going on here. (And if he had decided to simply check out the place and not head back first to tell her, perhaps she would be mad, too.)

But that remained to be seen. What would he do now?

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 Posted: May 26 2014, 03:43 PM
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9! (( Don't skewer me for the short post pls. x.x ))

Branson tried to be sneaky climbing up to approach the cabin, really he did, but he was luckier than he knew that the zebstrika wasn't tethered there anymore. He was a good sized man, and being quiet had only ever been a concern to get away from the party with a girl during a festival night, which didn't really count at all. The duke had her ears back in frustration at the human's clumsy tread while she picked her way effortlessly through the carpet of resinous needles as quietly as any wild pokemon worth her salt. The air around her vibrated with static as she kept her hidden power at the edge of existence; it was probably her most powerful technique for the moment, and she didn't fancy facing the overgrown elekid unprepared. Branson was put quickly at ease at the lack of powerful lightning horse, but the apparently recent absence made the eevee's tail twitch. She harried the human that had trapped her to get him to hurry, but Branson largely spurned her advice.

More honestly, he simply didn't notice the eevee's restless pacing or quiet chattering as he peered first through the window, then carefully rapped at the door, which yielded under the force and swung open just a crack. He pushed into the room carefully and relaxed further upon seeing it empty. His first instinct was to simply go back and report what he'd been asked to find out -- whether it was inhabited or not, but The Duke finally managed to catch his attention by leaping onto the rough table and scattering its papers across the floorboards. Branson growled at the small fluff of a pokemon and swore before beginning to gather the fallen articles. It was then that he noticed the writing and took proper note. Chelsea, hm? Well, there was no Chelsea here now. He would return to Greta and fill her in, unaffected by the nervousness that was growing in the jittery eevee.

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 Posted: May 27 2014, 08:13 PM
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[I won't spear you. But I will give you .4 for that.

Also, proceedin' slowly, slowly...]

---

The journey back to where Greta was waiting didn't take Branson long. The pine needles crunched as gently under his feet as they had at first when he had come this way, and the forest did not pick up any suspicious noise or quiet in the time it had taken him to investigate the cabin. It was, if anything, slightly faster than before. He was going a little downhill after all, and gravity took its course. Soon he could see where he had left his senior guardian by the creek.

Greta was on her knees when he found her, bent over a map she had spread out on the pine-covered ground. And she was not alone. Aside from Alice, who still hovered by her head, there was another man there, with an abra attached to his back. He did not wear the same armors as her, instead dressed in light leather ones, his short blond hair a rat's nest on his head and his eyes wide and ringed dark.

Branson can hear their arguing way before he actually came close enough for them to notice him.

"--ridiculous!" Greta was saying, or rather shouting. She waved her hand sharply at the map on the ground in front of her as though forcing the man standing at her side to look. "We've got checkpoints everywhere. How did sumthin' like that happen? Y'sure 'tis the right place t'blame even--"

"Do you doubt me?" the other man growled. And Greta was up on her feet immediately. He was so tall she only stood to his chin, but she grabbed him by the front of his shirt and dragged him closer. The abra Teleported alone, getting out of the way with haste, and Alice floated away from the two humans uneasily.

Branson couldn't hear what Greta was saying then, or if she said anything, but when she shoved the man away he gave her a venomous glare--after having recovered from his stumbling, of course, and avoid to barely not land on his ass after the violent shove. Then he spotted Branson and his face cleared. "Ah, you must be the recruit Greta is looking after." The man did not sound particularly glad to see him, but nodded in acknowledgement all the same.

Greta didn't bother with introductions. "Faust," she barked. "There's been an attack on Harper's Pass. I dunno what's goin' on 'xactly or how--" she leered darkly at the man, whose lips tightened in clear, deep irritation, "--but 'parantly the damn dragonite o' Her Majesty went mad an' started Hyper Beaming ev'rythin'. That thing's damn fast in the air and it's razin' town left an' right. I think they got it under control but they need more hands. There're deads and wounded."

"Dumping him on me, are you?" The scout grabbed Greta by the shoulder and persisted even as she tried to shake him off, her face beginning to go red. "And what are you going to do, Skyskim? Go off and suicide yourself to avenge Ereck--"

"DON'T SAY HIS NAME!" Greta roared at him, the sound reminiscent of a wounded bouffalant. She breathed heavily for a few seconds, shaking with rage, and the man stared intently at her, then let go of her shoulder.

"I'm getting back to the Pass," he said coldly. "You are going to stay here, with your aide there, and you are not going to do anything stupid while I get back with reinforcement. Do you understand, Guardian Skyskim?"

"Faust, get ready t'move out. Go with 'im," Greta snarled through gritted teeth at Branson, rolling up her map and jamming it back to her pack with violent, abrupt movements. "New orders, pup. Help out in the Pass--"

"No, no." The man waved his hand impatiently at Branson to stay where he was and to dismiss the orders. "Guardian Faust, you are to stay here--"

"Ye 'ave yer orders," Greta snapped as she shouldered her way past Branson without an apology, moving away from him and hulking up towards the cabin alone. "So obey 'em, Faust."

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