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 Líadain Kenyon's Travels, Líadain Kenyon
Carnivale
 Posted: Aug 18 2014, 12:00 PM
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Peace and safety, friend.
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{ Welcome to Harper! Please remember to keep an egg count of 1 to 20 in your posts, and once you've replied here do also reply in the Update Request thread so a moderator would know to continue your journey! I can tell you the primary type of your egg if you PM me or catch me in the cbox. http://files.jcink.net/uploads/harperregion/sprites/emoticons/8.png And most importantly, have fun! }

Prologue


With his piece said, the councilwoman waved for his newly-minted guardian to be on her way - though not in a mean-spirited manner. He just had a lot to do. As soon as the young woman stepped out of the room, the door was shut behind him by one of the two guards posted outside the door. Líadain was given back her sword, a gesture accompanied by a shy smile from the guard who did the handling, followed by a heavy blush. His companion snickered, clamping a hand over her mouth rather unsuccessfully.

There was still the matter of armors to attend to. Before Líadain can think to start finding her way to the armory, though, a voice called out her name from just down the hall, along with the word 'Wait.'

On either sides of the door, the sentries snapped into crisp salutes the moment the speaker came close enough for them to make out her face. "Sir!" they chorused.

The man in question, blond-haired and tan-skinned and decked out in the standard guardian armors save for the shield-shaped emblem bearing a rose on his belt that announced his rank as a Captain of the Guard, stopped short and raised an eyebrow of them for a second. Then he smiled sunnily, shrugged, and kept walking until he reached their side. There was a tiny limp to his left foot, but his gait was sure and almost merry, with a mild bounce to his steps.

"At ease, fellows," the man called out when he approached them, left thumb hooked into his belt. He looked to Líadain next, did a polite once-over of her, then inclined his head in an acknowledging nod. "Good morning, Guardian Kenyon. I am Captain Edward Enderman, and while you are under Councilman Wolfrum's patronage, you will be under my command. He has assigned you no missions, I take it? Aside from your starter pokemon and the egg, of course."

He waited for her answer, nodded, and turned to walk away again. A waggle of his glove-covered hand told Líadain that she'd best follow him before he set off again, heading down the hall where he'd first come from and then taking a turn at the end.

The Guardian Barracks in Seaway City was as stately and elegant as the rest of the city itself: high ceiling, large hallways, polished walls where weapons and paintings were hung. The hallway Enderman steered them to actually opened up to a small cobblestoned courtyard set with several benches and with a single huge magnolia tree and some big bushes of asters, and they passed through next to the huge "windows" that allowed them perfect view of it. A few guardians can be seen lounging there out of uniform, and waved at them. Enderman waved back.

Down that hall they went, then up a set of stairs. Líadain can request a quick visit to the armory and they can make that stop, since it wasn't too far from their destination. The real destination, though, was a tidy if spacious office that sang of the glory and rank of its occupant when the new guardian was shown through.

Directly across the door was a window, and in front of that window was a large desk. Behind that, a chair. On the left side, bookcases lined the wall. On the right, maps blocked out the wall altogether. Enderman shut the door behind him and showed her to one of the stools he kept in one corner. "It won't be long," he said. "But by all means, if you want to sit down, don't feel shy."

He left her to decide and went off to his desk to get something. Sure enough, by the time she managed to get comfortable he was already back in front of her and handed her an envelope. The seal had already been broken. Enderman's handwave said it was alright to get the letter out and read it.

The words were to-the-point, succinct, even though it was about two pounds too heavy with the courteousness noblemen had drilled into them since they were children. It was from a man named Gilbert Shallows, and he'd requested a little help with a "pest problem" in one of the dock areas to the west of town. The date written said it wasn't even a week ago.

"That is your first mission," said Enderman, who was bracing himself on his desk and studying her carefully. He smiled encouragingly, though, when she actually looked at him. "It is not too difficult by my reckoning, though of course you will have a senior guardian on hand to help you with anything you need. She is at the site already I'm afraid, so you will meet with her there." He straightened and clasped his hands behind his back. "The councilman has a great number of tasks to see to. From now on, you will report to me for briefings and debriefings. If you hadn't memorized the way to my office, do not worry. Simply ask anyone; they will know where to point you."

He smiled at her, then dipped his head in a low nod. That meant she would have to get going. Included inside the envelope there was also a map that would point her to the docks in question. She would leave the Barracks and go north up one of the biggest streets, then go west. The General Shoppe was there, too, which meant she could stop by if she wanted.

"Don't be late," added Enderman. Mindful of the huge size of the city, he said, "You have forty-five minutes. Good luck, Guardian Kenyon."

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Gilen Bassett
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Lahi Sharandi
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Carmen Caldwell
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Yana
 Posted: Aug 19 2014, 11:25 AM
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Líadain Kenyon

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[Egg count: 1]
Beaming, Lía gave a quick bow before heading for the door, looking between the – no, her egg and pokéball. As the door closed behind her, she carefully tucked both into her bag, along with the coin purse she’d shoved in her pocket to free her hands. She took back her sword with a grateful smile and a soft word of thanks, which only grew when the lad’s face flushed. She shot his companion a quick grin from behind her hair as she buckled her sword belt back on. He was sweet though, his shyness endearing. It was just funny that a smile and a couple of words could turn him the colour of a crawdaunt shell.

She had only just started to entertain the thought of drawing out her pokéball and meeting her partner for the first time when she heard her name. She turned towards the source, identifying him as a Guardian from his armour at a distance. She followed the sentries in a salute as he drew closer, sneaking a quick glance at them to make sure she was doing it right. Her father had shown her a few times, but better safe than sorry – particularly when greeting a Captain, she thought as she spotted the insignia on his belt. Still, he seemed pretty relaxed, from his smile and sprightly walk. She dropped her salute when the sentries did, standing patiently while the man looked her over. ‘No sir, no missions,’ she said, linking her hands behind her back again so she couldn’t fidget. She was quick to follow him, though she gave the sentries a small smile and a discreet wave goodbye as she stepped forward.

One of the things she loved about this city was its character. The buildings were lovely; though the barracks outstripped anything she had been in so far. Already Lía could see herself enjoying working out of a place like this. She tried not to gape too obviously when they came to the courtyard, but she lost the battle with her jaw as it dropped. A couple of times she had to tear her eyes away to make sure she was keeping up with the Captain. She made a mental note to revisit the courtyard when she was off duty as it disappeared from view. At least it was easier to focus when she was climbing the stairs, with not as much to distract her. She followed Enderman straight to his office, and once more found herself struggling not to stare at the room. She sank down onto the offered stool gratefully, her legs still feeling a little insubstantial after her meeting with the Councilman, though the sensation was fading. She’d barely had enough time to glance at one of the maps when Enderman had returned from his desk.

Lía took the letter, noting the texture and weight of the paper. Good quality, and a seal to boot. One of the local nobles, if she wasn’t mistaken, though she couldn’t recall who for the life of her. When Enderman motioned for her to read it, she scanned the foot of the letter first. It took her a few seconds to make out the name beneath all the flourishes, but when she did she nodded in recognition. Shallows, that was the name. Mystery solved, she read through the rest of the letter, skipping past the unnecessary details and courtesy until she reached the point of the letter. She nodded as she read, glancing up when the Captain spoke. She smiled back, briefly lifting the letter in emphasis. ‘I’d assume pests near the docks would mean water type Pokémon, or maybe one of the urban species. If I’m right, I’ve got some experience with water types, so hopefully this will go smoothly,’ she said, nodding at his assessment. She pulled the map out as he spoke, glancing up at him occasionally to show she was still listening. She knew the general way to the docks, and shouldn’t need the map for most of the journey. Once she got close enough, the smell of seaweed and brine would lead her straight there anyway. She looked up properly when he straightened, giving him her full attention even as she folded the map and letter again, ready to put away. At his nod, she stood and gave him a quick salute with her free hand before turning towards the door. At his warning, she gave him a decisive nod. ‘Yes sir. I’ll stop by the armoury then head straight there,’ she said before heading out the door, putting the letter and map away in the envelope, then the envelope in her bag.

First stop, the armoury. It didn’t take too long to collect her gear and put it on, though getting used to the weight would take a little longer. It was heavier than the old leathers she’d been used to during training with her father. Lía was still rolling her shoulders slightly as she stepped outside the barracks, taking a second to orientate herself. This would probably be a good time to meet her new Pokémon – even the thought brought a silly little grin to her face. Better get acquainted before getting to the job, after all. She still had plenty of time – thirty five of her forty five minutes. It would take her fifteen to reach the docks at a jog.

Lía drew the pokéball out of her bag, making a mental note to rearrange the contents of her bag before she set off so that the egg would be better cushioned. That could be done later though. Taking a deep breath, Lía pressed the button in the centre of the pokéball, grinning when a round, almost-hip-high, familiar Pokémon emerged. The little spheal blinked up at her as Lía knelt down to be on her eye level, smiling. ‘Hi there,’ she said, laughing when the seal Pokémon gave a small bray, clapping her stubby fins. Her voice didn’t yet have the resonance of her evolved forms, more like a bleat than anything, and her chances of intimidating anyone were zero, what with her big eyes and soft fur. Lía didn’t care; her starter was both a Pokémon she knew, and adorable to boot. They seemed to be off to a good start too. Lía carefully reached out to stroke the top of the spheal’s head, between her tiny ears. She bleated again, eyes closed in contentment. ‘So you’re my new partner, huh?’ Lía said softly, almost to herself. The speal opened her eyes and rolled forward on her belly just far enough to bump her head against Lía’s shin, as if in agreement. Lía chuckled, brushing the top of her head again. ‘You’re going to need a name then, aren’t you? Hmm.’ She thought for a moment, studying the Pokémon’s round shape and pale belly as a faded memory of her maternal grandmother popped into her head. She’d always worn a single pearl on a necklace – the most expensive thing she owned, and a gift from her husband for their twentieth wedding anniversary. She hadn’t taken it off through all the following decades, and used to tell Lía how it was her namesake. ‘Mairead,’ Lía said, nodding to herself before focusing on the little seal. ‘How does Mairead sound to you?’ She asked.

The spheal barked again, rocking back to support herself on her tail while she clapped her fins again. Lía laughed, ruffling the soft fur on her head. ‘Mairead it is. I'm Lía,’ she said, smiling. With another fond chuckle, Lía pointed down the street in the general direction of the docks, smiling at the little Pokémon’s attentive eyes. ‘We’ve got a job to get to, down on the western docks. One of the local nobles says there’re some pests making trouble. Reckon you can help me?’ Mairead bleated, giving what Lía thought was a nod, though she was so round it was hard to tell if she was or if she was merely rocking forward to find her balance. ‘I’ll take that as a yes,’ she said, grinning. She quickly pulled her bag from her shoulders, taking a few seconds to cushion the egg with her spare clothes to make sure it wouldn’t get damaged. As she rummaged, her fingers bumped against a sharp corner inside one of the pockets. Frowning slightly, Lía opened the pocket and pulled out what looked like a stretched, squashed pokeball. A pokecard, shrunken to its storage size with a scrap of parchment tied around its cord. Lía flipped the piece of parchment around, noticing her mother’s handwriting immediately. Lía – thought this would come in handy. Work hard, love you! – Mam. Smiling, Lía untied the note and slipped the card over her head. Cadhla always thought of everything.

Pulling her bag onto her back, Lía looked around, thinking. Speal couldn’t move very quickly, and rolling on dirt roads and cobbles couldn’t be comfortable compared to the ice floes spheal were designed for. With a decisive nod, Lía looked down at Mairead, pulling her pokéball from her pocket. ‘It might be best if you stay in your ball until we get there, if that’s alright? Once we’re at the docks I’ll let you straight out,’ she promised. The spheal barked, giving that little rocking bob again. Assuming that meant Mairead agreed, Lía withdrew her new partner and put the ball in her pocket – she’d have to get a belt – and turned north. By her rough calculation, she had maybe twenty five minutes to get to the docks. Twenty to air on the side of caution. Still enough time. She set off at a steady jog, glad now for all of the training her father had put her through in the past three years. Even with the added weight of the scale mail armour, she set a good pace and didn’t feel too strained as she turned west on the right street. Her breathing was deeper as she approached the General Shoppe, her face flushed, but not yet struggling. She glanced at the shop, considering going in, but she didn’t need a belt right now, and she had enough supplies to be getting on with. She could come back after her mission was over, when she had plenty of time at her disposal.

She reached the docks with five minutes to spare; sweat trickling down her back and making her shirt stick to her skin. She’d certainly stay in shape with this job. She glanced around for the senior guardian as she released Mairead, spotting a glimpse of scalemail through the busy crowd and making her way over. ‘Ma’am? Líadain Kenyon,’ she said, saluting. ‘I’m here about the pest problem?’

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Carnivale
 Posted: Sep 1 2014, 02:16 PM
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Peace and safety, friend.
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Total Posts: 2105
Member No. 456
Joined on 22-July 12.


Characters:
Carmen Caldwell, Lahi Sharandi, Gilen Bassett

Awards: None


{ .7 for you! I will reply to your PM once I have access to a real computer. http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/Emoticons/8.png It should not be long.

Also some things...
}

.

The woman Líadain found turned at the sound of her voice. She'd been conversing with a not particularly happy-looking gentleman when the newly-minted guardian showed up, and some of the leftover stress still showed on her face. For a moment the senior frowned at Líadain in confusion and a hint of irritation before her face cleared with a click of her fingers.

"Ah, the recruit!" Now Líadain was rewarded with a quick, sheepish smile. Her confirmed mentor turned to the impatient man she'd been talking to and said something quick under her breath that wasn't actually Common. He grumbled under his breath and moved along, shaking his head. She watched him go for a moment before turning to face Líadain.

The senior guardian wasn't very tall, only five foot five at best, but she was muscular and not too bad-looking. Her freckled face crinkled in a smile as she studied Líadain, her blue eyes nearly lost in the expression. She held out a hand. "It's nice to meet you...Guardian Líadain, right? I've been told to wait for you. I'm excited to be your mentor for your first mission! My name is Sally Kingsley - just Sally or Kingsley is good, no need for 'sir' or 'madam.' I'm not too good with formalities, myself."

Sally winked at her, then beckoned her to follow. She led the new guardian past the crowd, towards the group of piers that led further off into the sea. Many of them had a vessel or two docked there, and shops had been set up to trade a few souvenirs. Many of the goods were in the process of being loaded up on carts to be taken into town. A few of the people gave the two guardians looks, but most didn't care.

About five minutes of walking towards the left, and the crowded piers were left behind. The remaining space was used for a group of warehouses instead, their doors closed, bolted. Almost nobody human, aside from another guardian scribbling something on a piece of parchment, was there save for them.

Sally exchanged a wave at the guardian on duty before turning to Líadain, hands on hips. "All right. I will give you the rundown. The basic is this: there had been a report of...petty thieves, you should say, around here lately. A merchant had his things stored in these warehouses-" she gestured to them with a wave of her hand, "-and his guards swore up and down that they didn't see anything, but the next morning some of the stuff still went missing. Nobody knew where. Petty things - some sea provisions, hard tack and dried berries, the like - but there's been a repeat of offenses. So."

Sally clasped her hands together. "We did some looking, and found something a little surprising. And cute. There's a slowbro's nest not far from here. Actually, it's in that warehouse." She nodded to the shabbiest looking one on the very end of the row. "She has some baby slowpokes in there, and a couple of azurills. They've been enjoying Mr. Shallows' stocks a little too much. We need to safely get them out of there and bring them to the wild beach about two miles north. Mr. Shallows would complain." Sally shrugged. "But I'd rather not take the lives of someone who can be spared.

"Our primary problem is that Mother Slowbro is very territorial over her youngs. She had already gone fishing for the day and would take another hour or so to get back by my reckoning. During that time, we need to have moved the youngsters to at least pokeballs and then confront the mother. She will forgive us once she realizes the beach is a much safer place to be."


Sally slung the knapsack on her shoulder off and put it to the ground, then squatted down to rummage through it. Finally she emerged with a big brown pouch and handed it to Líadain. Her eyes twinkled as she grinned.

"In there are some baits and pokeballs. Any questions, rookie?"

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PCR
Gilen Bassett
Profile --- Travels
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Lahi Sharandi
Profile --- Travels
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Carmen Caldwell
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Yana
 Posted: Sep 2 2014, 11:46 AM
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[Egg count: 2]

Notes


Lía waited anxiously when the senior Guardian first turned, worrying for a moment that she’d hailed the wrong person. She relaxed and smiled when the woman recognised her, or rather position within the Guard, waiting while she concluded her business with the frowning gentleman. Lía didn’t catch what the senior Guardian said due to her quietness, but didn’t recognise the rhythm of the words either. She’d only ever learned Common after arriving in Harper, though her Caledonian accent remained, if not as strong as her parents’ were.

As the man walked off, looking as displeased as when Lía had first arrived, the new Guardian clasped her superior’s hand. It was a relief to have such a warm welcome – though her father loved his job and his colleagues, he had warned her that they could sometimes be a bit stiff or stern, depending on who you worked with. Same as any workplace, she supposed. She nodded when Sally checked her name, smiling when she got the pronunciation right. ‘Good to meet you too. Feel free to call me Lía if you like, it’s a bit less wordy,’ she said with a grin.

She followed Sally towards the piers, glancing down at Mairead to make sure the little seal was keeping up. She was doing fine at walking pace actually, rolling along the street with little trouble. Though Lía imagined she would struggle if something got in her way, or she had to change direction. Spheal had poor manoeuvrability, as did all similar water Pokémon if Lía recalled correctly. It could have been worse though, if Mairead had been a fish Pokémon for example. Luckily they got past the piers and to the warehouses without trouble, Mairead a bit dusty from the road but otherwise fine. She bumped into the back of Lía’s legs when the two Guardians stopped, braying in surprise as she wobbled on her back for a moment before toppling over and righting herself. Lía chuckled, stooping to scratch the top of her head in apology. She’d have to warn Mairead next time, since the little spheal closed her eyes when rolling on her head and wouldn’t know if Lía had stopped right in front of her. Mairead snorted, but otherwise ignored the development, simply blinking up at the two women patiently.

Glad to have such an easy-going Pokémon, Lía turned her attention to Sally as the other woman started to speak. Her lips twitched in amusement at the tale, though she agreed that moving the nest was the best plan. They would be safer from any permanent attempts to stop their stealing, and no doubt fresh food would be better for them than hard tack and dried berries. Slowbro didn’t like hunting usually, so used to fishing as slowpokes. She wasn’t surprised the mother had taken advantage of the alternate food source to supplement the fish. ‘If we can get all the young into pokeballs, or even just a big crate, we can possibly get the mother to follow us simply by walking ahead with them. As long as she sees that the babies are fine before we move them, maybe let her see us feeding them, she hopefully won’t be as aggressive and will go where we do. In theory, anyway,’ she said, smiling as she accepted the pouch. Of course, the mother slowbro might not want to play ball.

She hummed, considering the question before shaking her head with a smile. ‘None that come to mind. I’ll probably think of something as soon as we step inside, but that’s life for you. I’m ready when you are.’ Mairead barked in agreement as Lía tied the pouch to her sword belt for easy access. Lía glanced down at the seal with a smile. She hoped this would go well, but she could just as easily see them all coming out of this drenched and exhausted. Ah well, being a Guardian wasn’t easy work, and she didn’t mind getting her hands dirty.

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Adelulf
 Posted: Sep 18 2014, 11:37 AM
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Tier 4 or Die Trying
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[0.7 exp. I am also very jealous of your first mission, just saying.]

Guardian Kingsley listened intently to her partner's insight, before nodding in agreement.”Alright, Lia it is. That seems as good a plan as any. If we can find a suitable crate we will try and corral them all inside. Having the ability to show the mother the well being of her pups is important to us and capturing them without the pokeballs would be preferable. And if something comes to mind, just go ahead and ask it.” The Guardian made to enter the warehouse, then paused with her hand on the door. She turned back to Lia with a half grimace on her face. ”You know, just to be safe, all of these pokemon are half psychic, so they can read emotions fairly well. So let's try and think happy thoughts once we are inside, and especially once the mother returns. No need to add negative emotions into an already tense situation.”

Sally took a slow breathe, and after she exhaled, plastered the oddest smile on her face one could image. Then she opened the door and stepped inside.

The inside of the warehouse matched its exterior; shabby and rundown. It was clear that human activity had ceased months ago at the latest, but many crates were still scattered across the space. Some were opened from long ago, some seemed to be freshly smashed, but most remained in tact. Sally led the way as they walked towards the center of the building, and it was as she passed a stack of crates just taller than herself that they encountered the first residents. A trio of boucing, racing azurill flew out from behind the pile. One of the tiny blue cannonballs collided with the senior Guardian, causing her lungs to expel the air within with an oomph, and making her stumble to the side. A second of the creatures would do the same should Lia not avoid it in time.

Those who impacted would whimper slightly before regaining their bearings. Once they realized exactly what they had collided with however, all three would give out a shrill squeal and flee to various nooks around the warehouse. As Sally composed herself, she would glance back at Lia, ”Well, I guess now we are expected.”

If Lia had escaped the encounter no worse for wear, the pair would continue on and soon discover their objective. Lounging around the floor were six small slowpoke, two of which rested in an over turned crate stuffed with makeshift bedding. The other four were no more than a few yards from the impromptu nest and fully attentive to the arrival of the humans. The eyes of the largest glowed pink, and Sally felt a slight feeling of weightlessness for a passing moment, but the untrained and youthful mind of the slowpoke was practically harmless, and the only thing that remained effected by its powers were the bits of berries and biscuit scattered across the floor.

Sally rubbed her hands together as she tallied the poke babies, glad for their close proximity. ”Alright then, looks like they handled part of our task for us. That crate will work marvelously for transport, and they won't even be uncomfortable. Let's hurry this along, shall we?” Guardian Kingsley casually made her way over to the nearest of the pink pokemon and gingerly lifted it from the ground. She was met with no contest as she carried her charge over to the crate and placed in next to its siblings. ”There, this should be easy!”

And indeed it would be with two sets of hands to carry the little creatures. Unless Lia wanted to just watch, but that would obviously look poorly upon her character. Regardless, the task would only take a few moments and none of the infants were willing to put their energy into combating the relocation. Everything would go off without a hitch, except for one tiny detail; the mother came back early from her fishing trip. The only warning the two Guardians would have before several crates soared over their heads would the smacking of two flopping feebas against the stone of the floor.



Say hello to Mama!
http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/80slowbro.png http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/e335251.gif Lvl 40
Condition: Well, I will let you take a guess at how she feels seeing her babies packed into a crate.
-Using Telekinesis on several nearby crates to launch them as a warning shot above the humans
-Ready for a brawl if she feels the threat to her children increase

[Feel free to PM me any issues or if you think I have controlled too much!]

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Yana
 Posted: Oct 2 2014, 02:51 PM
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[Egg count: 3. And yeah, it’s a good one! Just pm me if anything needs changing or you want the single swear removed, I wasn't sure if it was allowed or not so if it's a problem just say so! I also don't know if I should have stopped once the mother arrived, so if that needs changing just ask http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/Emoticons/1.png]

Lía smiled and nodded. It wasn’t as though there would be no time to talk once they entered, so any questions that came to mind shouldn’t be a problem. ‘I will do.’ She went to follow Sally, hesitating when she did. She grinned and nodded, dipping her head in acknowledgement. ‘Good plan. My father has a starmie, so I’m hoping interacting with the slowbro won’t be too different. Then again, I’ve never annoyed Éimhín either...’ She gave a sheepish grin. ‘We’ll just do our best, and hope she doesn’t get too mad. As long as we stay calm, she hopefully will too.’ As long as they projected calmness and displayed no ill will – should be easy, as they bore none – the slowbro mother should reserve judgement long enough for them to show her they meant no harm. Quite how they would do that, Lía didn’t know, but they’d figure it out as they went along, surely.

Lía had to hold back a laugh at the strange face Sally pulled, biting her tongue to stop the snickers. It wouldn’t do to laugh at her superior on her first mission, after all. Lía took a calming breath and readied herself before following Sally, letting her nerves flow away. It was just handling baby Pokémon, she could do that. No need to worry until the mother returned. Mairead shuffled along beside her, foregoing rolling in favour of throwing herself forward onto her flippers and dragging herself along. Lía shook her head at her, smiling. Moving that way would be a bit easier when she evolved into a sealeo, and actually had a distinct front and back end. That was still a way off though.

It was a bit musty in the warehouse from lack of human use, the dusty smell tickling her nose. There were plenty of crates, some broken to pieces, others whole or mostly so. The ones in stacks had held up best, probably because they were safer from the Pokémon living there. Lía stuck close to Sally, looking around and occasionally checking on Mairead. Of course, that was when the azurill chose to merrily charge into them. Lía nearly caught hers on reflex, the little Pokémon bashing squarely into her stomach. The rebound off her armour bounced it just past her fingers and back to the ground, leaving Lía rubbing the spot. It hadn’t actually hurt too much thanks to the armour, but scale mail did nothing for confusion as the new Guardian blinked at their unwitting ambushers. She chuckled as they squealed and ran, wincing in sympathy. Headbutting scale armour, then being scared out of their minds. Poor things. Beside her, Mairead slowly relaxed from her defensive ball, watching the azurill go with mixed interest and wariness. Lía reached down to pat the top of her head in reassurance, nodding as she did at Sally. ‘Looks like,’ she agreed, scanning the rest of the floor that she could see. ‘At least the slowpokes won’t be accidentally attacking us.’ In theory.

True enough, the slowpokes did little more than watch them approach. One tried to lift Sally off her feet, but gave up pretty quickly. Other than that, they were remarkably cooperative as Lía picked up the closest one, the baby lowing gently as she picked it up. Mairead rolled along next to her, stopping at the nest and peering in curiously. The slowpoke Lía was lowering into the crate huffed at the spheal. Mairead bleated back, clapping her fins. Lía shook her head and left them to it. ‘Hopefully dealing with the slowbro will be too,’, she replied, heading to collect her second baby with no trouble. A piece of bait each and they had been quite content to sit in her arms as she carried them the few steps back to their nest.

Lía was just straightening from the crate when the odd, wet sound reached her ears. She barely had time to glance over before something rushed over her head and exploded behind her. She dropped to the ground, crouching over the crate and Mairead, one arm over her head before the sound even processed. Wood, falling and clattering. Nothing hitting her, too distant. She looked back over her shoulder and saw the splinters of several crates against the back wall. To have several airborne at once, at that height for that distance... ah, crap.

Looking the way the crates had come from, Lía spotted the female slowbro, her eyes still pink. Bad sign, very bad sign. She glanced over at Sally to check she was alright, before slowly drawing back from the crate, easing up onto her knees. She held her hands up as though confronting an angry human, to show she wasn’t about to reach for any weapons. Calm, stay nice and calm. She took a deep breath, looking back to the slowbro. Please don’t throw me like those crates. ‘Easy there,’ she said, keeping her voice level and soothing despite her heart bouncing off her voicebox. ‘It’s alright, we’re not here to hurt them. We’re trying to help, that’s all. It’s not going to be safe here for much longer, but we know somewhere better for you, on the beach. You’ll be safe there, with lots of fish to eat. We’re just trying to help,’ she murmured. It wasn’t so much the words that were important, but the tone. Low, reassuring, soothing. Then again, Pokémon understood complex orders, so maybe explaining the situation would help. Lía didn’t really care at the minute, as long as the slowbro would stop glaring at them like that. She was clearly a lot stronger than Mairead, and that Psychic looked more than capable of flinging two humans around like ragdolls. Sally might have Pokémon able to fight her, but Lía didn’t want to have to resort to that. She was only defending her nest and young, after all. If they could just calm her down, get her to cooperate, that would be the best outcome. Please, just listen. Please.

[Notes:
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- Mairead used defence curl when the azurills appeared. Not sure if I needed to say or not!]

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Seasle
 Posted: Oct 5 2014, 11:47 PM
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[0.7 experience for Lía and swearing is fine, as long as it's used sparingly and isn't, well, crude. Annnnd, I'm adding extra cuteness because baby Slowpokes <3]

The first slowpoke she picked up was a warm weight that squirmed halfheartedly in her arms. When this only produced the effect of pushing her back into Lía's chest, she mostly still, huffing a sigh and closing her eyes. She didn't open them even as she was set down, instead nudging her head under a litter-mates' belly until only the tips of her curled pink ears could be seen.

The second baby was a bit more active, not that that was saying much for a slowpoke. He was sleeping when she gathered him into her arms and lifted his head up only for his mouth to open in a wide yawn, exposing pearly white teeth and a curled pink tongue. Then he blinked sleepily at her and tucked his head beneath her neck and curled his tail around her arm. He fell asleep against her, not even waking up when she set him into the crate.

If she glanced at her mentor, Sally, she would see that the odd, forced smile had disappeared into a real one. Dimples creased her cheeks and she seemed to be cooing some sort of half-nonsense at the baby slowpoke in her arms.

When she set her down half on top of one of Lía's babies, that seemed to be the end of the matter. Until the crates broke with a sharp, echoing crack above their heads.

Sally also moved away from the crate, but one of her hands rested on a pokeball at her hip and the other, one the hilt of her sword. She followed Lía's example in tone, though, speaking low and soothingly.


"We're Guardians, see? That blue harp on our clothes means we help, not hurt. Your little ones are safe. They're real cute, actually, just darling."

Something passed over Lía's mind, like a hand ruffling her hair. It just skipped over the surface of her thoughts before disappearing. The Slowbro's eyes stopped glowing and she shuffled over to her babies, leaning down over the crate and drawing her hands over each of their heads. When that was done her eyes flashed pink-purple - and the crate lifted into the air. An image formed in Lía's head, one where her and Sally followed the Slowbro to the shore like an honour guard.

Then the Slowbro walked away, apparently confident they would follow.

Sally released a long breath beside her and grinned.


"Well, that was lucky, wasn't it? Looks like this is gonna work out fine."

And it did appear to be so, even if they would get a few strange looks from the people around the docks as they left. The salty scent of the sea was thick in the air and the wind tugged at the grass besides the beach. The sand was damp with rain from the storm the night before and when they found the wild beach, it was filled with beached pokemon, frillish and tentacool tangled up in each other, one lone, crying corsola, and a bleeding miltoic who had wrapped herself around most of the other pokemon. The worst part, though, were the luvdisc. They were scattered all over the beach like wingull feathers. Small footprints were all over the sand, but there didn't seem to be any humans about.

The Slowpoke set down her crate and curled around it, much like the miltoic. Then she yawned and sent them a clear sense of 'fix this'. And waited, sleepy eyes watching over her children.

So. They had their orders.


"I guess we need to send them back to the ocean, but I can't say I want to touch those stingers..." Sally said, rubbing a hand over her chin thoughtfully, "You got any ideas, Lía?"

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Yana
 Posted: Jan 22 2016, 02:28 PM
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[Egg count: 4. I’m baaaaack... after over a year haha. As I’m no doubt rusty, let me know if I mess up or need to make any changes http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/Emoticons/1.png]

Lía chuckled at the babies, idly scratching them behind the ears with her free hand. She had to unwind the second one’s tail from her arm as she set him down in the crate. Looking over, Sally seemed more relaxed too. Her odd grimace of a smile had vanished into something soft and genuine. From the way she was murmuring to the babies she’d picked up, not all Guardians were stern and severe and all-business.

‘Right, let’s get you out of-’ She didn’t get to finish, too busy ducking to cover the babies and Mairead as what sounded like a thunder clap went off above and behind her. The tranquillity thoroughly destroyed, Lía had to breathe to get her heartbeat back under control and to calm her still-leaping thoughts. She nodded as Sally tried to talk the mother slowbro down, unable to think of anything to add that she hadn’t said already. If the mother was paranoid or just plain against humans, there wasn’t really anything they could do.

Mairead had shuffled around the crate to bump into Lía’s knees, standing in front of her trainer but leaning into her. Lía had no idea if she was protecting her or looking for comfort. She carefully lowered the hand furthest from the crate to rest on the spheal’s head, stroking reassuringly, never breaking eye contact with the female slowbro. Usually staring at a Pokémon was a sign of aggression to them, but with a psychic Pokémon Lía hoped she would take it that Lía wasn’t trying to hide anything from her. For all her exposure to water Pokémon, she didn’t have the sheer experience to know what the right move was here.

She sucked a breath in as something... flowed through her mind. If asked to describe it later, she’d struggle. It was just a soft, querying brush, but undoubtedly other. It was the most bizarre sensation she’d had in her life, very different to Éimhín’s way of communication, and it was gone in seconds. She had to refocus her gaze when it was done, blinking hard as the mother’s eyes stopped glowing. Lía stayed very still, sat back on her heels as the slowbro approached and checked over her children. Lía grimaced again as a strange image rippled in her mind, unused to the new but not necessarily unpleasant contact.

Lía kneaded her temples as the slowbro marched away, floating crate following after her. She gave Sally a shaky smile, pulse finally settling. ‘Lucky, but odd. My father’s Starmie’s psychic, but it never felt quite like that. At least we can get this resolved peacefully,’ she said, clambering to her feet. Mairead gave a soft bleat, nudging against her shins. Lía stooped to brush her fur, humming gently at the seal Pokémon. ‘It’s alright, Mairead. You did great,’ she reassured her, before following Sally out onto the docks.

It didn’t take them long to catch up to the rather aptly-named slowbro, even at Mairead’s pace. The walk gave Lía time to calm down completely and begin to get back the positive feeling of a successful first mission, so far... right until they reached the beach. Lía stared out at the scene, heart taking residence somewhere near her liver. ‘Oh, no,’ she said quietly, catching herself before she could say something stronger. She turned to Sally, biting her lip as she listened. She nodded, scrubbing a hand through her hair and sighing, studying the beach.

‘First we need to figure out which Pokémon need medical attention, and which merely need relocating out to deeper water,’ she said, without any real clue where to begin. ‘For now, Mairead, could you try and keep the surviving luvdisc wet? That might buy them a little more time.’ With an affirmative bleat, Mairead rolled off across the beach towards the luvdisc. Lía looked back to Sally, brain still ticking through possibilities. ‘We could use the crate to transport them, if the mother slowbro would let us, but that doesn’t solve the stinger issue,’ she murmured, mostly to herself. It was entirely possible they would try to move the jellyfish Pokémon and get stung or poisoned for their trouble. Not to mention how delicate the jellyfish would be; moving them without injuring them further might be difficult. Lía looked over at the slowbro, an idea forming in her head. It would depend entirely on the willingness of the Pokémon, however. Still, she could try.

She carefully approached the slowbro, hands open, crouching down a full metre from her to be safe. ‘I think we can help these Pokémon, but I’m worried we’ll hurt some of them if we handle them, or they might hurt us by accident. Would you help us move the healthy frillish and tentacool out to the open water? We should be able to handle the rest, and take those who need healing to people who can help them,’ she explained, not fully sure of what she was doing. All she knew was that the slowbro would make a difficult job a lot easier, if she was willing. If not, she and Sally would just have to protect their uncovered skin as best as possible and be as gentle as they could in moving the Pokémon. Regardless, Lía wasn’t about to wade out into the sea with her heavy armour on. She unbuckled the scale mail, setting it aside with her sword and bag, leaving her in her tunic, undershirt, breeches and boots. That done, she approached the nearest casualty, one of the scattered luvdisc that Mairead had created a puddle for. Gingerly, so as not to damage the delicate scales, Lía scooped the fish up. There were no injuries she could see on this one, so she began striding towards the ocean, bracing herself for the cool water.

Notes:

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relapo
 Posted: Feb 6 2016, 08:10 PM
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[.7 for you! Please let me know if I misunderstood something that was going on. I was a touch confused but I think I got it all sorted out!]

--

The slowbro mother looked uncertain at Lia as the young guardian pleaded her case for assistance, but the part-psychic type could feel the sincerity in her voice, even if she didn't fully understand her words. The slowbro did understand enough to know that she was being asked to help handle the dangerous - yet healthy - pokemon that are washed up.

True to its species' name, the slowbro moved its way over to the stranded tentacool and frillish and began picking them up, one by one, and moving them to the deeper water. She would glance over carefully and with eyes that sent warning daggers at the guardians. She wouldn't take even a second's notice of funny business so Lia and the rest of the guard would have to tread carefully.


"Why don't I start tending to the wounded then, yea? I have a small kit with me. I'd like to limit the amount of pokemon we have to take back with us. In the meantime, let me get us some help!"

Sally pulled out a pokeball and brought forth a fearow from within.

"Go and get Sir Davidson - or his transport! We could use some help." It was obvious the senior guardian had given this order before as the fearow quickly darted away and back toward town. Given the walk wasn't too far for even the two humans, the bird would like be at its destination within minutes, and hopefully help would arrive shortly after.

Sally would move to start tending to the wounded. She had various potions and healing items at the ready in her small pack around her shoulders.


"Lia, why don't you carry out the luvdisc back to sea. They need to get back in the water shortly....I don't want them to suffer the same fate as this milotic...its beyond saving." Her words trailed off in sadness, but seeing the majestic water type suffer was too much for her to bear. Sally strategically placed her sword and swiftly finished the deed, allowing the milotic to pass on.

Sally continued to treat the wounded while Lia continued to aid in whatever manner she felt most comfortable. Even the mama slowbro warmed up to the humans as it became further apparent that they were truly there to just aid the situation. A couple times, the slowbro stopped to mourn over the fellow water-types that suffered at the hands of what can only be described as a likely assault by vile humans.

"We will find and kill whoever did this." [rela]The unprofessional speak was surprising from the guardian who had been so well mannered to this point, but the sight of such suffering was really getting under her skin.


"Woah...what happened here?"

Sally's fearow had returned, and with it, a man who appeared to be near Sally's age dismounted from the bird. He was dressed as a guardian would be ready for combat, but in realizing the situation, he quickly acquiesced to the terrain and situation. His question wasn't necessarily directed at either of them in particular, but given the fearow landed closer to Lia, it would be appropriate for her to answer.

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Yana
 Posted: Feb 23 2016, 12:18 PM
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[Egg count: 5]

Lía sighed in relief as she waded back out of the cool water, spotting the mother slowbro beginning to help. The first luvdisc had darted away as soon as Lía placed it in the wait-deep water, none the worse for wear after its beaching.

Lía nodded at Sally’s suggestion, already slogging across the wet sand to the closest fish Pokémon flopping in one of Mairead’s puddles as Sally’s fearow took off. She looked over at the milotic when Sally mentioned it, brow creasing. ‘There’s nothing we can do?’ she asked, but without any real hope – more of a demonstration of regret than anything else.

She was about to collect her next charge when she heard Sally draw her sword. Frowning, Lía straightened to look, and quickly started heading across the beach when she saw the milotic was still curled around the other Pokémon. ‘Sally, wait-’ she jolted, hairs raising instinctively on the back of her neck at the sound of the blade sliding through scales and flesh. She could still hear the corsola crying.

Voice high with disbelief, Lía broke into a jog to get there faster. ‘You couldn’t have waited until we’d moved the Pokémon she was protecting?’ she demanded, reaching in over the dead milotic’s coils to gently scoop up the corsola that was now screeching in grief, pain and fear. It was a lot lighter than she expected, even taking into account it’s severed tail. At least the mother slowbro had moved some of the jellyfish Pokémon away before it had happened, though the injured ones were still there.

Prioritising the Pokémon over what her Senior Guardian had done, Lía headed over to her bag and began rummaging through it for her potions. She only had three, but she wasn’t going to let the corsola suffer until more help could arrive. It wouldn’t return her tail, but it would hopefully dull the pain and speed the healing process. Whether the corsola would be able to navigate the ocean currents without it Lía didn’t know. She’d have to ask a professional healer – this was one Pokémon who would have to come with them for medical help. Lía applied most of one of her potions to the craggy stump of the corsola’s tail, using a little on the other scrapes and cuts the Pokémon had gained.

That done Lía scooped out a small pit in the sand, only a foot deep, and placed the corsola into it. They were close enough to the waterline than the sand at that depth was damp, despite the dry layers on top. Lía called Mairead over from tending to the beached luvdisc, managing a brittle smile as the spheal trundled over. ‘Another water gun if you can manage it, Mairead – fill the pit up if you can. Hopefully that’ll keep the sand wet enough to keep you comfortable until we can get you out of here,’ she said, turning to the corsola as the water flowed in around her. The coral Pokémon had stopped shrieking as she’d applied the potion, but she was whimpering softly, exhausted. She stirred as the water lapped at her, sinking a little deeper into the pit in what seemed to be relief. Lía hoped it helped a little. ‘I’m sorry about the milotic. You shouldn’t have had to see that,’, she said quietly, very gently brushing one of the corsola’s horns before standing. ‘Are you done with the luvdisc, Mairead?’

The spheal barked, blinking and bobbing in a nod. Lía tried to smile again. ‘Then will you stay here with her and look out for her? I’ll bring any Pokémon who need medical help back here.’ When Mairead bleated an affirmative, Lía turned and jogged back down to the beach to continue ferrying the healthy luvdisc out to sea. Counting the puddles Mairead had left, there were eight to go. Lía shot a glance over at Sally as she continued treating the Pokémon the milotic had been protecting. Lía was tempted to swap jobs with her for the Pokémon’s sake, but she didn’t have a medical kit or anything to help treat them. She just couldn’t understand what Sally had been thinking, killing the milotic while it was still wrapped around the other Pokémon. Yes, she’d been putting it out of its misery, but surely it would have been kinder to the surviving Pokémon to remove them from the scene first?

Being a Guardian wasn’t easy; she knew that from her father’s stories. Sometimes there were hard calls to make. Sally had just made a different one to what Lía would have done, she knew that logically, but part of her was still shaken by the suddenness of it. Her positive feeling of having a good, simple first mission was utterly gone, replaced by aching muscles and uncertainty as she carried the uninjured luvdisc to the waves and the injured ones to Sally. Many of the wounds didn’t seem to have been caused by the storm or beaching – they looked deliberately inflicted. Lía was just handing a luvdisc with a ragged, badly damaged fin to Sally when the older Guardian spoke. Lía nodded, but couldn’t help glancing at the milotic’s blankly staring eyes. They were already starting to go flat. The wounds on her body – not the killing one, but the others – were a mix of scrapes, bruises and damaged scales that had likely happened during the storm, and marks that looked like blade wounds and large, dark bruising that Lía could only guess indicated a repeated, sustained attack on that one area of her stomach. Kicks, maybe. ‘Well, hopefully the Pokémon got their own back themselves before the culprits left. Seems only fair,’ she said quietly, looking up at the sound of wings.

Leaving Sally to continue tending to the injuries, Lía approached Sir Davidson to fill him in. ‘From what we can gather, the Pokémon were beached here by the last storm, but it seems they were attacked while they were vulnerable. There are signs of human involvement. Several of these Pokémon would probably have survived if they had just been left alone,’ she said, nodding to the dead luvdisc and milotic. Some of the luvdisc had been savaged – barely recognisable. Some had been stamped on. Some looked like they’d been thrown, from the faint skid marks in the sand that hadn’t yet been eroded by the wind. ‘There’s some footprints still visible,’ she continued, leading him over to the ones distinct from her own and Sally’s, ‘but we’ve been too busy tending to the surviving Pokémon to follow them up.’

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Rosalie
 Posted: Apr 20 2016, 11:36 AM
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.7! So sorry for the wait. http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/Emoticons/2.png

Sally's expression had darkened at Lia's shock, but her voice was not unkind despite its brusqueness as she explained, showing the younger woman what she meant on the sea-serpent's body as she went. "No, I couldn't wait. A dying pokemon isn't rational -- had I tried to remove the corsola first, she could have injured not just me and the little one, but others on the beach nearby.

"Look here... her chest is collapsed. With how big she is, she had to be fairly old, but her weight was crushing her out of the water. I could not have let her suffer while we waited it out, and even if we could have moved her back into the ocean, well, her lungs would never work the same.

"Likely, they wouldn't work at all -- and who knows what else is pressed beyond use inside her."
The bitterness crept in hard and raw at the end as she straightened again, and her jaw was tight as she turned to gather what other pokemon she could while Lia took care of the corsola. It was fortunate that at least they were able still to breathe in the open air. She had heard from travelers of far-spread countries that not all the world's water pokemon could breathe air alone at need, but she wasn't sure she believed it.

The fearow's return caught her attention, though, and she took care to ignore her pokemon as it poked at a couple of the dead or nearly-dead luvdisc hat breathed feebly on the sand and then snapped them up almost casually. By the time she was near enough to hear her trainee over the wind, she was nearly over Lia's shoulder, and was shaking her head.

"No, girl, it wasn't a storm. Not a normal one at least. I found.... Well, I don't know what I found. Davidson would know better. Some kind of tracks on the sand, out and back into the surf. The human prints start beside it."

Davidson looked troubled. "Tracks? Show me."

Sally beckoned for then both to follow her, and led them a few hundred meters down the beach, well beyond the milotic corpse. It looked as though scores of small pokemon, or perhaps shells, had been dragged unresisting along the sands in a clump. What in the world?

Davidson knew. He swore and spat. "Tentacruel. With one of those mage-things -- those pearls. Someone handles it, the bastards. Sally's right, Lia. A storm can wash up a handful, or smaller pokemon like he tentacool and luvdisc, but not this many, and never so large as a milotic. What I'd give to know what happened here..."

He shook his head, though -- there was little further to be done just looking at the tracks, and there were mroe immediate concerns. He made a few marks in guard-sign on a little tablet of paper and tucked it away safe in an oilskin pouch. Lia would be certain that he could write in common, but she also knew that every guard post had their own shorthand. It was worth it, to be that much faster and private. He directed them to split, count up what they saw and how many, and meet him back again

In the end, there were nearly four hundred sea-going pokemon scattered along the beach.

Milotic was, mercifully, the largest still present. A full third were dead on the sands, and a further quarter were injured beyond what the guardians had resources to heal with optimism. They put these out of their misery with quiet anger on Sally's part and dignified disgust on Davidson's. Those that remained -- a bit under half -- were either able to be saved or returned to the sea. Davidson called for a cart from a fishwife and released his tauros to pull. The gathering and keeping the pokemon hydrated would take the better part of not just the afternoon, but the evening as well. They would see no one in all that time -- commoners because Guardians were At Work, and their quarry because his prints came from the sea and returned to it.

The mother slowbro indicated to them that it was not the first time this had happened. Nor the second. Davidson ground his teeth and Sally burst out at him in general frustration, "Why is this the first we've heard about this?!"

The slowbro thought about this for a long minute, and then slowly shook her head. She didn't know.

The 'dialog' with the pink psychic reminded them all of their initial purpose in coming to the beach -- finding them a more appropriate nesting site. Clearly, however, this was not going to do for a litter of slowpoke too young to care for themselves when it had not done for a fully matured milotic. Sally exchanged looks with Davidson, who leaned wearily on the borrowed cart, waiting for Lia to deposit the last of the lowest-risk pokemon for transport to their healers and then re-release later in the week. They were busy -- there would be reports to give, searches to organize, people to question... work for established Guardians that had potential to be far too dangerous for a new recruit.

The slowpokes, however... "Lia, I've got to report back to the councilman -- and maybe the Lord and Lady too, or the young Miss Barrie if they aren't available -- and start sending search parties out with Davidson, and hunt down the popular rogues' nests, and..."

She caught herself before she put the whole weary list out and open for her trainee to bear and continued more firmly, "...And a fair number of other difficult things. I don't want to put you off, but I can't bring you with me -- not tonight at least. Things could get messy. What I do need, though, is someone I can trust to take care of these slowpoke and their mother, and keep track of them.

"You've got quarters with the Guard, I'm sure, even if you haven't seen them yet, but your mates probably won't appreciate the smell of fish or playful psychics in their dreams. Take this purse, go down to Piper's Street and give the whole bag to Innkeep Goshop at the Twirling Grumpig. She'll grumble and grunt at you, but she'll give you a suite of three rooms on the Councilman's coin -- by the way that's what we call a sweets-bag if you haven't heard of 'em; all Council coin for senior guards to throw around at need for unexpected expenses. Got the crest on the edges of the coins and my own family name sewn in the lining along with Wolfrum's so no one asks questions when they get handed it.

"Goshop's done this kind of thing before, so don't let her scare you. Go take care of the lot of them and that corsola without its tail that's followed you around all day, and,"
She looked her in the eye and paused, the tone of firm orders easing into a more familiar one of seriousness, "Train up that blue ball of yours. As much as you can manage tonight. I'll teach you to hunt, but I won't get you killed. I'll come by in the morning -- make that afternoon -- once I've got back and slept some. We'll figure out what comes next then."

Davidson smiled kindly, and joked in a mock-serious tone that was clearly an attempt to set her a bit more at ease, "Dismissed, greenhorn! Go get dinner while the older farts go play politics for an evening."

With the sun hovering only just above the horizon, she had the late evening and early night to herself, or almost, but despite the clear sky it felt like there was a real storm on the horizon.

+2 experience for Lia for assisting with the cleanup and taking care of the slowpoke family!

Feel free to fill in the empty time or write training posts or move straight on ahead -- whatever you fancy! You've leveled up -- don't forget to add in the extra egg counts on your next post. http://i832.photobucket.com/albums/zz241/HarperRegion/Sprites/Emoticons/1.png

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Old Characters: Tobias Middleton & Travels, Gineva Winstret & Travels

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Yana
 Posted: Nov 8 2016, 03:16 PM
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Líadain Kenyon

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[Egg count: 14]

Though Sally’s explanation was hard to hear, and the corsola’s frantic screaming was still burrowing into her mind, Lía clenched her jaw and nodded tightly, scraping a hand through her hair as she forced herself to accept it ‘I- yes, I see. I’m sorry for snapping, Sally,’ she said, logic agreeing with her but her still-tense emotions making the words hard to say.

She focused on the monotony of her work, on the burn in her legs slogging back and forth over wet sand, on the slippery weight of her healthy cargo. She breathed deep, even with the smell of blood and waste from the dead pokémon, and drew herself beyond the initial alarm. She needed a clear mind and a rational outlook for this mission, letting her emotions get in the way would only hinder her in the long run. No more arguing with her superiors, no more jumping to conclusions.

She felt a lot calmer by the time Davidson arrived, and followed Sally to the tracks she’d found, curious but not offended at the correction. She was mystified by the tracks until Davidson provided the answer – then she could see how the trailing tentacles could have left such odd prints. What he said was true – beachings of large water pokémon were exceedingly rare; usually they could get right back in the water with no help, even if they were a little slow. Those that stayed on the sand were usually injured or too ill to move. She’d never heard of an event like this before.

Counting up the victims of the attack was slow, difficult work between ferrying the healthy out to sea, taking the injured to her superiors and easing the suffering of those too far gone. Lía was beyond herself with each motion of her blade, quick and efficient and emotionally blank. She could deal with it later. Right now it was an obligation she would fulfil.

The slowbro’s intervention made Lía wonder. She turned to the mother psychic, shifting the weight of the last luvdisc in her aching arms before hoisting it up onto the cart as gently as she could. ‘Is it always this beach that’s hit? Or has it been different places around Seaway?’ If it was always the same place, then that might make it easier to find the culprit – whoever had taken advantage of the carnage the tentacruel had wrought.

She stepped away from the cart, stretching her stiff arms out with a wince before lifting Mairead down from the cart where she’d been dousing the occupants with water. The little spheal was obviously tired, and kept stretching her jaw as if it ached, but had kept up with her task valiantly.

‘You did well today,’ she said quietly as she lowered Mairead to the sand, gently scratching around the seal’s ears before she straightened. The spheal bleated softly, leaning against Lía’s shin wearily as the Junior Guardian gave Sally and Davidson her full attention.

She managed to stop herself from smiling when Sally threatened to ramble on before catching herself, instead giving her superior a grateful nod as she accepted the coin purse. A small part of her bristled at the implication that she couldn’t handle herself if things got dicey, but Lía pushed the irrational surge aside. Logic dictated that, no matter how much training her father had given her, nothing but sheer time and experience on the job could prepare her for the kind of tasks Sally would be taking on. For all her martial skill, she was still a new recruit, and the one thing her father had all but begged her to do was not become overconfident just because he’d deemed her good enough to become a Junior Guardian. Her emotions were compromised because of the taxing work she’d done all day, because she’d gone most of the day without eating and because everything ached. Her patience would return once those problems were addressed.

She managed to fish a smile from somewhere when Davidson dismissed her, before saluting and recalling Mairead. At least one of them wouldn’t have to do the long walk back to the city. She donned her armour again, carefully scooped up the wounded corsola and waited for the mother slowbro to levitate her babies’ crate before heading back across the sand. Dinner and bed sounded wonderful.

* * *

Lía’s training thread from that evening.
Lía’s development thread from that night and the next morning.

* * *


Early afternoon the next day found Lía and Mairead waiting downstairs for Sally’s arrival, refreshed and optimism mostly restored. The slowpoke family and corsola were upstairs in the quiet of Lía’s rooms, both for their own comfort and for that of their fellow patrons. Much as Lía’s fellow Guardians wouldn’t appreciate the company of a bunch of psychics and water types, she was equally sure Innkeep Goshop wouldn’t want them cluttering up her communal area and driving away potential customers. Besides, Lía wanted to consult with Sally before she took them to her parents’ daycare just outside Seaway, where she knew they’d be safe until this mystery was solved and the bays around Seaway were secure again. They’d have to share a cove with her father’s lapras, but as a temporary solution she was happy with it.

With any luck Sally would approve, and they’d resolve this issue quickly. Maybe Sally and Davidson had more information after last night, and they’d have some solid leads to work with. Lía could only hope.

Notes

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Flight
 Posted: Jan 11 2017, 06:28 PM
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{ 0.7 EXP for you! }

.

While Lia was waiting, the most curious thing would happen - an itching at the sides of her head, at first, in the places where a braid-crown would fall around her head. Then one of the patrons in the tavern looked at her, looked away, did a double-take, and said kindly, "You have flowers growing out of your head, lassie."

He was old enough to be her grandfather, with a snow-white beard and mustache, and his eyes were amused. His tablemate, however, was not, and leaned away as much as his seat in the chair would allow him. "Ghosts, man," he muttered, and downed what was probably half of his drink, and made the Wheel over his chest with his other hand. "Whate'er trouble a ghost brought to you, Guardian, I hope you get out of it soon."

And that was the most attention that Lia's new flower-crown would get from humans. The pokemons were different - if Lia had released Malread, the spheal would take one sniff at the flowers and roll closer, seemingly hit by a Captivate. If she stepped outside while waiting for Sally, she'd get more than one pidgey settled on the Twirling Grumpig's roof staring down at her and her flower-crown like something edible.

The only problem was, Sally would arrive late. Or rather, not at all.

When someone did make it to the Twirling Grumpig it was a young runner that came, dark haired and panting, with a chimecho at his heels. There was a painted wooden emblem slung in his belt that swung into his hip as he walked, and even though the paint was worn and fading the Guard's Harp was apparent and bold.

"Guardswoman Kenyon? I'm here for Guardswoman Kenyon?" Most of the room went back to their drinks and talk at that, but the runner stayed right inside the door as he waited, fidgeting with his hands and ignoring the chimecho that hung by his shoulder. "I was told she was here."

She is here, something said, with quiet confidence. From the looks of the others in the patron they did not hear the voice - but Lia would, and the runner and his psychic would turn towards her with unerring precision. Whether it was from her psychic powers or from the flowers growing out of Lia's head would be unsure. It is you, yes?

The runner would wait for confirmation before continuing, bouncing on his heels by the tavern door, even though Innskeeper Goshop continued to scowl at him from behind her counter. Then he'd sweep an arm out to Lia and, with great urgency in his suddenly low voice, said, "You gotta come with me, ma'am. Guardswoman Kingsley couldn't make it to your meeting 'cause something came up. I can't say what," and here he grimaced, "not here, but you gotta come with me."

There was a low humming from the chimecho, and Lia wouldn't feel anything from the psychic, not even anything like the brief brush of minds that the mother slowbro had done the day before. The runner kept fidgeting with his hands. He didn't look like he was about to push Lia, at least, though he wouldn't move away from the door either, instead gesturing insistently towards the outside.

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Eryn
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Addie
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Seung
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please refer to me with they/them pronouns!

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Yana
 Posted: Feb 6 2017, 02:56 PM
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Líadain Kenyon

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[Egg count: 15] [Hallowe'en trick count: 1]

It was just a slight itch, one that eased when her nails dragged over it. Little annoyances, in different spots on her scalp that arose across several minutes. They faded after a while, and Lía thought nothing of it until she caught an old man looking at her oddly.

Her hands jumped to her head when he spoke, confusion only growing when her questing fingers found first stems woven through her hair, then flower petals. She traced a fragile stem down to its root – sprouting right out of her skin. She could even feel tiny, uneven raised veins around each stem; miniscule roots spreading out between skin and bone.

She moved back to a flower as the grandfatherly man’s companion reared back, gingerly plucking a petal from a flower. It didn’t hurt, but she felt a slight tugging from the stem. Odd. Really, really odd. The petal was bright red, shaped like those from a rose.

Oddly, it was the superstitious man who made her expression clear. Ghosts. Of course; the little litwick. ‘Just a harmless trick,’ she reassured him, rubbing the petal between her fingers. It gave off a sweet smell, pleasant but hardly overpowering. Her other hand rose to trace the general shape of the flowers, realising she now had a flower crown sprouting out of her neatly braided hair.

Well that would be inconvenient, should something happen and she end up in a fight. Hopefully she’d have a quiet day, or... however long she’d have these flowers for. They wouldn’t be permanent, would they?

Reassuring herself that they wouldn’t be, Lía settled in to wait for Sally. After an hour of increasingly frequent glances out the window, Lía wandered out to the street to look for any sign of her absent mentor. Her new ornaments waved in the light sea breeze, tugging on her hair. With no hint Sally was nearby, Lía took the chance to stretch her legs a little outside. A quick glance down the side-alley showed that the snow from last night had melted, though several puddles remained.

She was glancing up at her suite’s windows to see if the slowbro was looking out when she spotted the pidgey. Several, peering over the edge of the roof at her – at her flowers, actually.

Ah. Her hand rose to the delicate petals, the wind stirring their sweet smell again. Not very strong to her, perhaps, but from the way the birds jostled and stared at her with their bright eyes it was very strong to Pokémon.

Her hand slowly drifted towards the outside pocket of her backpack – she still needed to get a belt to hold her pokéballs. The corsola had chosen not to join her and Lía was content in that decision, but expanding her team was a good idea. Though pidgey were small at first, by the time they were fully evolved they made great flying mounts. She might need a flier on her team should she need to reach an emergency quickly.

She hesitated, fingers pausing on the pocket button. She had been reaching for Mairead’s ball, but perhaps there was no need to. The flowers on her head had apparently attracted the birds – perhaps she could use them to coax one rather than risk driving them away with a battle.

Instead she plucked a flower from her head, nail clipping neatly through a stem. She held it up in her open palm towards the birds, gently clicking her tongue at them the way she would at home, when she was calling the pokémon residents in for dinner.

A quick glance around showed Sally still wasn’t there, so there was no harm in attempting a capture. Lía waited hopefully for a few minutes, waiting to see if any of the pidgey would come down onto her arm or take the flower from her hand. She could be making a mistake here, and inviting them all to swoop down and peck the flowers from her head, but at least then she’d be rid of them.

Eventually she headed back inside; only to lounge for another half-hour before the door swung open nearly to the wall and a runner entered the inn.

It was only the suddenness of his entry – and what a Guardian runner would think of seeing her with what looked like a child’s flower crown on her head – that tied Lía’s tongue as he stood in the entrance. Just as she found it and went to identify herself, the new voice sounded without noise. Lía stopped, temporarily mute at the encounter of a full psychic’s communication abilities. Compared to the slowbro upstairs, they were spectacular.

She quickly adapted however, clearing her throat. ‘Aye, that’s me.’ She stood from her seatpproached the young man and the chimecho, a sinking feeling telling her she’d be on the move, and soon.

Proved right, Lía nodded her assent. She already had everything she needed with her, having anticipated heading off with Sally immediately. ‘Lead the way. What’s your name?’ she asked, all business as she headed back outside. She briefly considered bringing out Mairead, only to discard the idea. If the way the runner was panting was any indication, they’d be moving fast and wouldn’t be able to wait for the seal.

Notes

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Korosensei
 Posted: Feb 24 2017, 10:28 AM
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[[+0.7 EXP for Lía! Please keep a count for your Halloween trick in your post so we mods can know when to take it away.]]

<span class="korosensei"> Although some of the pidgeys flew away at Líadain’s movements, two of them descended to the ground, looking curiously at the flower in her hand. The male approached first, shyly trying to get closer to the flower and the one who bore it, yet he was quickly shoved away by another, larger pidgey who cawed angrily at him. As the male tried to defend his place, a third pidgey descended from the roof, choosing to land behind Lía, trusting in her distraction with the other two pidgeys to try to get at the flower before either of them could. She might, if the distraction proved very effective, even go for Lía’s head as a whole, the source of the wondrous flowers that brought the birds in.

In short, Lía had a small flock of pidgeys vying for her attention, and she would have a short time with them before the runner and his chimecho would show up. One or more of the pidgeys would be amenable to capture, but they might need more than just the flowers to follow Lía - or would they? She would have a short while to experiment with her words and actions before the runner would appear, out of breath and followed by the pure psychic who quickly found Lía.

<span class="carnivale"> “Alex,” </span> the runner panted when Lía asked for his name, taking a moment to lean over and put his hands on his knees and breathe deeply. <span class="carnivale"> “And there’s not much time, hurry!” </span>

He would lead Lía through the streets, back the way he came. He sounded so exhausted that he shouldn’t have been able to run at all, but the chimecho by his side supported him and kept him going. He would not speak as they ran, and his pace would be punishing, to the point that when they finally arrived at the Guardian barracks, he would have to lean over and clutch his knees again, and heave a few breaths before he could begin speaking.

<span class="carnivale"> “They told me to get you as fast as I could,” </span> he panted, holding the door open for Lía. <span class="carnivale"> “There’s been a complication on the beach. He’ll explain,” </span> Alex waved his hand at a Guardian standing nearby, who quickly approached Lía as Alex sank into the nearest chair.

<span class="flight"> “Follow me,” </span> the new Guardian said gruffly, guiding Lía through the barracks. <span class="flight"> “It seems that after Guardswoman Kingsley reported your findings to the Councilman, she saw fit to return to the site and try to apprehend the wrongdoer.” </span> The sneer on his face compounded with his tone of voice let Lía know exactly how he felt about Sarah’s actions. <span class="flight"> “Problem is, her gallade found the thing too late, and she nearly got her pokemon killed. She’s here with the healer, and now that her pokemon are all right, she’s been wanting to see you.” </span>

He opened a door and motioned for Lía to go inside, then offered a terse nod to Sarah before leaving. She stood next to a bed where her gallade sat, watching as her fearow began to move his wings again. One wing was bandaged, and about an inch on either side of the bandage was shorn of feathers.

<span class="adelulf"> “Thank goodness you’re here,” </span> Sarah said. <span class="adelulf"> “We need to come up with a plan, and quick. I don’t know how long that man will stay around on the beach.” </span> She then sighed, looking over at Lía. <span class="adelulf"> “Yes, I know it was wrong of me, but when I had finished making my report, I went out to see the beach one more time, to see if there was anything at all that I could do. I saw what looked like a corphish fighting against something, and that was when I saw the tentacruel. I tried to hide and let my gallade do the work, but he was too slow and the tentacruel’s handler found me. I tried to get him as good as I could, I know for a fact that I at least severely injured his skarmory, but I had to flee to save my pokemon’s lives - and possibly my own. I’m not exactly a novice battler, so this encounter was… concerning, to say the least.” </span> She ran a hand through her hair.

She switched her tone quickly. <span class="adelulf"> “Well, what do you think we should do about this? I’m not throwing my pokemon at him again so quickly, but if he’s caught onto us, worse things might happen…” </span> She looked pointedly at Lía, waiting to hear insight from her junior before deciding on a course of action. </span>

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<span class="harper">The Wild Pidgeys</span>

http://files.jcink.net/uploads/harperregion/sprites/16pidgey.png http://files.jcink.net/uploads/harperregion/sprites/e335252.gif
- Shyly approaching Lía, looking at the petal

http://files.jcink.net/uploads/harperregion/sprites/16pidgey.png http://files.jcink.net/uploads/harperregion/sprites/e335251.gif
- Squawking and trying to nudge the male pidgey out of the way
- Larger than the other pidgeys

http://files.jcink.net/uploads/harperregion/sprites/16pidgey.png http://files.jcink.net/uploads/harperregion/sprites/e335251.gif
- Sneaking up on Lía while the other two pidgeys fight over the petal in Lía’s hand

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