They had made it to the finals at last, had finally had time to devote to the tournament and the health to maintain it. They had found people -- perhaps not allies, but people who remembered her from times past and had some kindness to share -- who had granted them a safe berth for the duration. She was not on the road so completely as she had been in previous years. She had studied Eryn, had even met with her by happenstance or coincidence before the match in the night. Johanna Murdoc knew their team in the same way she knew her quarry on a hunt. Still, she had considered long and in the company of her team who to present.
At first, she had been certain the ninetales would join, but Vita had hesitated, considered, spoken her piece (with permission). Johanna had considered. Had sketched strategies with Lune on clay or birch paper or the floor of the inn with a bit of charcoal that could be washed away as soon as they were done. She had listened to rumors and reviewed what she knew of Eryn's previous matches. And the day before they were both summoned to the lake, she smiled.
The abra had given the impression of looking at her for a long time, despite its closed eyes, when it came. At last, it offered up a hand to the assassin without a word, but it didn't need any. Tournament abras, she had found, often grew somewhat attached to their assigned competitors in time even when their assignment did not, on the whole, enjoy psychics. The familiarity, however, eased the sensation of the teleport into the area full of beating sun and water glittering like sapphires. So many of the arenas started out with such beauty, but they would change that soon enough.
Surprisingly, Eryn had not yet made herself known. A change. But in the end, one that mattered not at all.
Two taps, two bursts of red light, the same as any other match. Sol hung in the air like a tavern sign, still without wind and with his clear wings beating so rapidly that they were simply invisible. Lune crouched beneath him, casting a single irritated glance at the sky for its heat, and letting the chill of her body seep into the sand below and ease the burning of her paws. Eryn thought her team fast. The woman did not know what the word meant.
"Sandstorm. Her team is sharp, but not one of them has a keen eye. Let's see how good they are when they can't see far beyond their noses. Lune, make sure no one else makes changes."
They nodded. The ninjask all but vanished until the torrent of stinging, biting, desert-shore-sands exploded up in his wake as he shot along the beach, screeching at Eryn's team as soon as they appeared in that horrible, nails-to-slate-and-metal sound that poor handlers often had to deal with from his species -- not quite a taunt. That was Lune's job, rushing close enough through the blinding cloak of sand to taunt the other rogue's pokemon, tease them, dangle their handler's incompetence before them, batter their morale -- and make them angry.
And then the weavile would retreat, back to the water's edge and slip all but beneath the surface of the lake, protected from the stringing sands. The ninjask chose the opposite course, looping behind Johanna where Eryn could not hear his wings over the storm, and sling-shot towards the rocky walls of the crater sides, where anything that dived for him would be more likely to run head first into the stone. Besides, even a bird with aerial ace needed to be able to first locate their quarry. He knew the move also. Its accuracy was based not on sight but on speed of movement.
Speed was not the same as agility. He knew it. His mastery of flight and his particular wings let him stop, turn, or dodge on a clip. Let the hawk come and find out about his kind, if they had dared to release it. It would crash. Its hot blood would line his claws. Eryn had been brutal, more than the fights required. His human could not see him now, so he could return the favor for the prey-competitors. They were only like nincada without training.
Lune's taunting chants made her the sole "visible" target in the arena, calling down Eryn's team to her if only because she could be found. The bug had grown from the earth -- the weavile had no doubt at all that he hid in it as well. She chittered, taking care to soak every inch of herself in the water and glaze it into her fur so that she could carry ice with her wherever she went. She waited, feeling along the darkness of the sandstorm for that tiny quivering shift of an opponent, any opponent, attempting to strengthen themselves. The moment they did, the shadows would sap the move's knowledge, drain it from them, and grant it to her instead. If they did not, she would hone her own claws. Then regardless of whether or not she was approached, she would sink into the barely-extant shadow she cast on the water and vanish.
To reappear in an opponent's. She would show them how a master of her elements used them, with the enhanced darkness given by her blackglasses and the pressure of her kind bearing down on their spirits like a great, muffling blanket.
Safety Goggles - Unaffected by negative weather.
- Sandstorm before Eryn releases their pokemon.
- Screech x2 on Azar preferentially, Cumulus if not. Each screech is -2 stages of defense.
- Hovering perhaps a foot in front of the rock wall sides of the crater approximately twenty feet in the air, far enough away for the sandstorm to both hide him and mask the sound of his wings. I estimate that due to its nature and pitch, the whine of his wings is only audible up to ten-fifteen feet away given the storm.
Due to training: Fire type moves are neutrally effective (1x)
From Vitamins: +2 Atk
- Taunt on Azar preferentially, Cumulus if not.
- Mostly submerged in water to minimize exposure to Sandstorm damage. Coated in water/ice for protection from the sandstorm's effects and extra ammunition for moves.
- Snatch on any attempt by non-Taunted pokemon to boost stats. If this does not occur, Hone Claws will be used.
- Feint Attack on Azar preferentially, Nimbus if not.
(Damage not counting Snatch/Hone Claws: -183-215% Azar, -131-154% Nimbus. Always hits.)
(Damage counting Hone Claws: -243-286% Azar, -174-205% Nimbus. Always hits.)
Due to training: fire-type moves are 1.5x effective; fighting-type moves are 3.5x effective.
Always has enough energy to Counter if not fainted (PP Max)
From vitamins: +1 Spd, +1 AtkIf Hone Claws is used: +1 Atk, +1 Acc.
Other boosts will depend on Snatch/Hone Claws and damage should be recalculated accordingly