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Written Story Screenshot Teen [MW2] the Delinquent - Sing the Rage

anonymouse

the plastic king of castle polyethylene
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
643
Caught
Aug 8, 2019
Messages
114
Location
southeastern USA
Nature
Sassy
Pronouns
any; they/them
Pokémon Type
Dark, Ground
Pokédex Entry
this pokemon spends far too much time in front of a laptop, someone unglue them.
"Rage—Goddess, sing the rage of Peleus’ son Achilles,
murderous, doomed, that cost the Achaeans countless losses,
hurling down to the House of Death so many sturdy souls,
great fighters’ souls, but made their bodies carrion,
feasts for the dogs and birds,
and the will of Zeus was moving toward its end."


The Iliad, as translated by Robert Fagles, 1990

with that incongruously epic quote out of the way, welcome to my entry in Mirror World 2. as one might expect, the lore and base rules for this can be found here. peruse them at your leisure if you'd like a refresher. i'll just list my particulars and here and get right down to business.

chosen and blade

Chosen Name: Timo Maddison

Title: the Delinquent

Biography: Timo's early adulthood has been fueled by little other than resentment and nicotine. He was one of those kids - the one always in trouble, busted for drugs, that sort of thing. Not much changed after that besides his anger toward authority losing its focus and becoming a general feeling of "Fuck you, fuck this, fuck everything!" He's not an idiot, and knows he's not making things easier for himself, but anger is a hard habit to break. Especially when you avoid introspection like the plague and refuse to acknowledge why it is you are the way you are. But you can't fix your problems by ignoring them. Especially in a place like the Mirror World where nothing is as it seems.

if character playlists are the sort of thing that interest you, and you aren't offended by rock and metal with lots of cussing, then here is a playlist for Timo i threw together in like two minutes. and here is one Jim made because Jim is the fucking best.












Blade Name: Jess Reed

Biography: For Jess, the Mirror World is the only reality she knows. She has no conception that she might've been someone else, somewhere else, before. Enigma has warped some of her memories and manufactured others from whole cloth to make Jess a reliable Blade who just happens to be the exact embodiment of Timo's deepest resentments - an adultier adult woman with her shit together and no desire to put up with his shenanigans. Jess' invented memories hold up for normal interaction with the soulless husks of NPCs, but will they do the same when she's confronted with another thinking person?

Jim wrote a thing for Jess and it's great y'all should go read it

restrictions and rewards
Restriction:
  • can only use damage dealing moves of a physical type (normal, fighting, flying, poison, ground, rock, bug, ghost, steel) in battle. status moves are all viable regardless of type.
  • can't grind more than 5 levels above the next upcoming boss - i.e. rival, gym leader, rocket admin
  • once a full team of 6 is in the party, they can't* be swapped out unless a dead teammate is being replaced. replacements must be the catch that's been in the box longest.
    • *after every boss, flip a coin. if the flip is successful, one current party member may optionally be swapped for the next pokemon in the box queue. the swapped pokemon must be placed at the end of the lineup.
  • Timo's pokemon don't actually die. they turn on him in punishment for his failure. whenever a party pokemon faints, at the next checkpoint, the team at the time of the death must fight the fainted pokemon. this Showdown battle is "safe" insofar as casualties don't carry over. however, if a party pokemon gets KO'd in this Showdown fight, it can't be used until after the next checkpoint.
Reward:
  • positive reinforcement? never met 'er.
  • however, perseverance, or in this case mulish belligerence, can sometimes be rewarded. once per staked challenge taken, one party pokemon can be taught a viable damage-dealing move regardless of compatibility. the move must be 50 base power or less. alternatively, a pokemon with an existing move that has been taught in this fashion can receive an upgrade to a viable damaging move of 100 or less base power.
navigation
content warnings
at the moment, the only warnings to be had are for foul language. however, as the game progresses, it's very likely some of Timo's problems will get unearthed, and those might be sensitive subjects for folks. i will be updating this as appropriate and also putting content warnings into the specific update posts that contain the sensitive content.

prologue


Why is it always the headache. Not nausea, not really; that would be a blessing, since he could just stagger into the bathroom, hurl up the last of the booze, and feel fine in a few minutes. But no, Timo’s hangovers rarely includ nausea. It's always the headache. Just insistent enough he can’t ignore it or go back to sleep; not bad enough to warrant calling off work. It means he has to get up, take an aspirin, and hope it will work by the time he has to haul his sorry carcass into the shop.

Wait… what day is it? Timo peels his eyes open, blinks, and furrows his brows at the ceiling. Why does he always expect to see something different? Is it just wishful thinking? Whatever. Puzzling over the idiosyncrasies of his brain has never done him any good, and it certainly isn’t making the headache go away.



Might as well get up and take a shower. These clothes he fell asleep in definitely smell like he slept in them.



As usual, there's no food in the fridge. That's what he gets for finding an apartment on Craigslist. You get the living accommodations you pay for.



The air still smells like rain. Timo likes overcast days, so that's fine. And it stays cooler so he doesn't have a damn heatstroke during his run. One of these days, he'll get some weights and shit to keep at home so he has something else to do when he's antsy besides just run in the semi-wilderness outside of town.

Timo pauses to douse himself in the acrid repels that even burn his nose; it's no wonder it keeps fauna away. Once the hiss of the aerosol fades, he catches a snatch of conversation in the near distance.

"-ison? What about him?"

It's a sonorous voice that Timo swears he's heard before, but he can't place it for the life of him. Someone replies to the first voice, but it's muffled to incomprehension.

"Not really. Janet and Corey have been my neighbors for a while, but I've hardly seen Maddison. Mostly just at Garrett's shop."

... They're talking about him. Janet and Corey are his roommates' names, and Garrett is his boss. Timo glances toward the voices and sees a tall woman with a wavy cascade of hair so red it's probably fake leaning on a windowsill. Her silhouette is also vaguely familiar; it's her words, rather than her appearance, that jog his memory. Whatever this woman's name is, she lives next door. He always avoided her just the same as his roommates.



"Hell if I know. Jane says he's prickly. You might wanna ask Garrett, though. He'll know more." Pause. "Well, you know I don't like to judge books by their covers. Still - yeah. Exactly."

Timo's jaw tightens. He breaks into a run, faster than his typical pace until he's well out of earshot of the idle small-town gossip.



Fuck, he needs to get out of there. The cheap rent and fairly reliable work, since the only vehicles in town are older than him and break down with a regularity you could set clocks to, are hardly worth the claustrophobic insularity of a one-stoplight town like New Bark.



He slows down to a more sedate jog when he hits the pavement leading through Cherrygrove. Not that Cherrygrove is much of a step up, but at least it's got a grocery store that sells alcohol and cigarettes and more than one brand of spam in a can. But he's on a roll, his muscles just now warmed up, so he carries on north.



The one benefit to living in the sticks is that, when the wildlife isn't threatening bodily harm to anybody without their own tame monster, it's pretty damn beautiful out here.

The sun manages to get some warmth through the cloud cover by the time Timo's route passes back through Cherrygrove and turns east again. He waits until he's back in the overgrown excuse for a greenway connecting the two towns, then stops long enough to yank his shirt over his head and use it to mop his face.



"Honey, if you're gonna run in this humidity, at least take off the binder. You're gonna suffocate yourself," drawls the same sonorous voice from before.

Timo's head snaps up. He narrows his eyes at the tall, red-haired woman. "Mind your own fucking business."

"If you pass out from asphyxiation and get attacked by the wild pokemon, it'll be my business, because I'll have to help look for your corpse." She tosses her hair over her shoulder. "You're Timo Maddison, right?"

"And you're a nosy bitch," Timo sneers.

Deep brown eyes roll skyward. "Really, are we in middle school again? You need to work on your ammo."

Timo comes to the immediate realization that this conversation is going nowhere, fast. And while he normally doesn't mind trading insults with whoever decides to try and bother him, he's not in the mood to stand here in his binder in front of this stranger. So he drapes his sweaty shirt around his shoulders, not bothering to stick his arms through the sleeves, and resumes his jog homeward without another word.



"The name's Jess Reed," she calls after the sullen, tattooed punk as he begins to jog off. "And if you need something to work out in, I have an old sports bra that should fit you!"

He doesn't respond, but then, Jess didn't expect him to. She doesn't entirely blame him for being unfriendly, since she did sort of ambush him in the middle of nowhere. Still. His attitude isn't doing him any favors. She wonders if he's ignorant of his reputation across New Bark, or if he just doesn't care. She also wonders if it's even worth it to try and interfere to smooth things over. Maybe she should just stand back and watch the inevitable fireworks when that idiot hotwires a customer's car and drives it into a tree or something.

... Oh, who is Jess kidding. She's not going to do that. Even if it would be way more fun than trying to discover how deep that abrasive surliness goes and smooth it out.


Treble!! by tentacat


Treble! by me, somehow


BFA versus tiny pink cat: WHAT WILL SHE DO?! by Capybara


Deezy meets Timo in a weird dream, by NyanCheetos

Rio's picrews bc i don't feel like making a whole new slide for him:


owo who dis???






 
Last edited:

Second

A Yu-Gi-Oh! Protagonist but in Real Life
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
206
Caught
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
543
Nature
Quirky
Pronouns
They / Them
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Ice
Pokédex Entry
This Pokemon has a tendency to start many projects as they come to mind, but they tend to only finish projects other people have made deadlines for.
This is a really good intro! I love how you use the screenshots here--they compliment the story, but you haven't beholden yourself to the game's plot at all. And Tino's personality comes across pretty strongly here in the beginning, too! Can't wait to see where this goes!
 

Jimcloud

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
🌱Featurer
🎇Contributor
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
3
Caught
May 13, 2019
Messages
848
Pronouns
they/he/she
Oh you did a real good job of selling this concept with this first update, I love it. Timo says a family can be yourself, a morning jog, and alcohol, and frankly I think that's beautiful.
 
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k80

h
Screenshotter
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
92
Caught
Jun 16, 2019
Messages
88
Location
h
Nature
Rash
Pronouns
she/her
Pokémon Type
Electric, Bug
Pokédex Entry
h
im actually addicted to how well you're integrating the screenshots and prose id inject this prologue directly into my veins if at all possible
 

BadgerDaddy

The Cringe is strong with this one
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
1442
Caught
Feb 4, 2020
Messages
166
Location
Near, far, wherever you are
Nature
Impish
Pronouns
She/Her
Pokémon Type
Water, Dark
Pokédex Entry
This was a mistake!
This intro is so good! I am already invested! Something in me tells me that Timo is gonna be my spirit animal
 

anonymouse

the plastic king of castle polyethylene
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
643
Caught
Aug 8, 2019
Messages
114
Location
southeastern USA
Nature
Sassy
Pronouns
any; they/them
Pokémon Type
Dark, Ground
Pokédex Entry
this pokemon spends far too much time in front of a laptop, someone unglue them.
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #6
replies
Timo says a family can be yourself, a morning jog, and alcohol, and frankly I think that's beautiful.
dkfgj that is an accurate summation, yes.
I love how you use the screenshots here--they compliment the story, but you haven't beholden yourself to the game's plot at all. And Timo's personality comes across pretty strongly here in the beginning, too! Can't wait to see where this goes!
if there's one thing Timo can always be relied upon to do, it's to completely ignore what anyone tries telling him to do and go where the hell he likes.
im actually addicted to how well you're integrating the screenshots and prose id inject this prologue directly into my veins if at all possible
please consult a doctor before taking. side effects may include high blood pressure, chronic tryharditis, heart palpitations, and sudden bouts of uncontrollable edge.
This intro is so good! I am already invested! Something in me tells me that Timo is gonna be my spirit animal
i'm glad the intro hooked you! though Timo might not be the healthiest spirit animal at the moment. who knows, though, this challenge might well cause some actual, honest to arceus character development!
verse 1: he's the Delinquent for a reason
He always gets restless when he drinks. Not only because he's half certain his roommates will start bugging him if they realize he's got alcohol he hides in his room, though that's a concern. Not just because he has to have a cigarette going while he drinks, and he's not willing to sacrifice his deposit by smoking in his room. It's something else. His body just needs to be moving. But it's fine, because the evening breeze cools the sweat on his brow.



He stops outside Elm's "lab," if it can even be called a lab. Out of habit, Timo straightens and tries to asses how drunk he is. People say your judgment is impaired so you're really not supposed to be good at deciding that while you're drunk, but he's been at this long enough to know the feeling pretty well. And he's not quite drunk drunk, but the buzz is rolling and he doesn't want to stop.

Looking at the lab reminds him of that snatch of conversation he overheard the other day. That woman, whatever her name is, Jess or something, talking to whoever was in the lab. Probably just Elm, since the guy seems to live there more than at his own damn house. Does no one here have anything better to do than gossip? Timo sneers before plugging his face with the bottle still swaddled in its paper bag.

Timo wanders over to the window Jess had been standing at. Like just about every window in town, it's one of those with a mesh screen and a lower panel that can be lifted from inside. Also like many of the windows in town, that moveable lower panel has beens left partly open all night to let in the breeze. Before Timo has time to even process what he's doing, he's pulled the screen out of its flimsy setting and shoved the window open far enough to climb in.

And fall ass over tea kettle onto the concrete floor. Cussing, Timo writhes, clutching the back of his head while a flurry of printer paper falls around him. He curses the "narrow-ass windowsill!" and the "slippery fuckin' paper!!" until, if the world had any fairness, this entire corner of the building would be on fire. That it doesn't combust is further evidence that the universe has it out for him.

Hauling himself to his feet takes a couple of false starts, as the world is wobbling on its axis more than it was before he did that header through the window. Timo squints irritably at the window, which, with everything being all tip-tilted, looks higher off the floor than it was off the ground outside. He gives the wall a retaliatory kick for being too damn high before turning his attention to the rest of the room.



Though Timo has never been inside the lab, it looks pretty much like he expected it to. Books, sheaves of notes, and fuck knows what else in paper form builds up like snowdrifts on almost every horizontal surface. The computers look geriatric and there's a faint scent in the air - the smell you get in institutional buildings made of cinderblocks and asbestos that's been slathered in paint in the hopes it won't give the inhabitants respiratory cancer. He knows it well.



Who the fuck leaves pokeballs sitting out overnight? If they're empty, why not put them away? And if not, why the hell not take the poor critters home or something? Timo grabs the middle pokeball and stuffs it into the kangaroo pocket of his hoodie. He's reaching for another one when the sound of a door nearby being opened and closed injects nitro-charged adrenaline into every vein. He whirls around, eyes darting, reflexively grabbing his multi-tool from his back pocket.

The night is as silent now as it was before. No footsteps. No one else in the building. The sound must've come through the open window from next door or something.

... The open window clearly visible from next door, where someone must have just come home. Fuck.

Timo rushes over to the window to peek out. The porch light of the house next door is on; Timo can't remember if it was earlier. Does anyone in this hick town even have motion activated porch lights? Whatever. He can't see anybody around outside or near any windows, so he slithers back through, staggers to his feet, and books it into the sparse woods behind the lab.

Timo keeps up a trot, cutting vaguely north through the trees until he comes out into a clearing he visits on occasion.



That's the point when the adrenaline rush wears off and his head remembers that he's had half a bottle of vodka tonight. Timo sits down hard.

The pokeball in his jacket pocket wiggles, reminding him that it's there. Timo takes it out and barely has time to wonder how these things are supposed to work when the button glows, then it pops open in his hand and red light floods out. He drops it with a yelp while a small shape coalesces before him.



"Pi!"

Timo blinks at the tiny, round pokemon who blinks owlishly right back at him.

"What the fuck?" he asks.

"Pi?" The cleffa tilts her head inquisitively. "Pi?"

Timo scrubs at his face with both hands and tries another look. The cleffa is still peering at him expectantly. Timo picks up the pokeball. With a little experimentation, he figures out how to return the doleful-eyed cleffa back into the ball.

She pops back out immediately and toddles over to grab the ball out of his hand. He's so surprised that this little critter can even hold the pokeball that she succeeds in taking it. "Pi!"

"I'm too drunk for this," Timo tells her.

"Pi."

"You don't even understand what I'm saying. Do you?"

"Pi."

Timo shakes his head. "No, y'know what, never mind. I'm done." He takes the pokeball back, returns her, and stuffs the ball into his pocket. To his relief, the fabric does the trick of keeping the pokeball from opening again and keeps the cleffa confined. "We're going home and I'll figure this shit out in the morning."
gameplay update 1: to Violet City
as much as i'd like to make all my updates prose heavy, i only have so many spoons. so here's where the meat of the update will go, insofar as gameplay progression.

speaking of gameplay, here were my starter choices:





since i can only use physical moves, i discounted cyndaquil from the running and flipped a coin to decide which of the other two Timo would nick at random. even if cleffa may not ever make it to clefable, i was lowkey hoping i'd land that one bc of the reaction i'd get from Timo, who didn't like pink even before he developed an abiding disgust for all things feminine.

that boy is too much of a hot mess to take himself as seriously as he does, so if this challenge accomplishes nothing else, he'll learn to laugh at himself a bit.



once we get to Goldenrod i might change her nickname. too bad treblecleffa won't fit.

on the first pass through here before pokeballs were available, i took the opportunity to see what the wilds looked like between New Bark and route 30.



there are more ofc, but those are the big hits. note that the machamp are psychic/electric. when i have bug STAB. and they give a lot of attack stat exp. i did a great deal of grinding here for Falkner, needless to say.



fetch quests and tutorials, yadda yadda. i did a smidge of grinding on the way back; originally intended to stop at 7, then remembered that one of the other starters was a rock-type bulbasaur with ancient power and i didn't remember which one the rival would get. so i gave treblecleffa one extra level.



silver time!



the randomizer giveth! Jess has the psychic/ice cyndaquil.



how does...? cleffa use...?





nope, don't ask the randomizer questions you don't want the answers to. it doesn't matter! the teeny pink star mon won with hilarious ease and that's what's important.



catching time~



and that's the route 29 catch failed. but it was weak to bug and used ice beam, so it was likely to be a type that wouldn't learn many physical moves. so it's just as well.




route 46 catch cooperated. and now i basically have both the physical type starters? neat. i also wish i'd thought of saurkraut for his nickname.




not my best pun, i admit. some of these nicknames are better than others.



so that covers the areas i hit before. on to new territory!




forgot to catch the naming screen, but it doesn't matter since this little dude is next to useless for this run.




mmm and the randomizer taketh away. oh well. can't catch a poison rhydon every time.



boxing these two for the duration. there is an outside chance they'll learn some physical coverage eventually, but i'm not interested in switch-training them right now.


that's that for now, all. i've played through to the checkpoint, but i'll save the rest of Violet City's stuff for another update. see y'all then!
 
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Robo

Ask me about Phantom of the Oprea lore
Artist
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
53
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
55
Location
Desert! Hell!
Nature
Quiet
Pronouns
She/Her
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Ghost
god timo is such a good character i love him. sometimes you're just drunk and steal a little pink guy and you know what? that's valid.

anyways i'm really excited to see where this run ends up going, your character writing is A+ and has me hooked already
 

Jimcloud

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3
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May 13, 2019
Messages
848
Pronouns
they/he/she
God it's so fucking funny that this big tough guy breaks into a lab and decides to steal, fucking, this pink flufflord. The irony is so thick you could choke on it. I love it.
 

BadgerDaddy

The Cringe is strong with this one
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
1442
Caught
Feb 4, 2020
Messages
166
Location
Near, far, wherever you are
Nature
Impish
Pronouns
She/Her
Pokémon Type
Water, Dark
Pokédex Entry
This was a mistake!
Some spirit animals are more wounded than others I guess.
Giving Timo a Cleffa is the best thing ever.
OMG I am so digging Timo with stupidly cute Pokemon.
To be honest, I think Timo needs a hug.
A big loving hug.
From his Cleffa, of course.
Shame you didn't catch that Snubbull, could have been amazing, being surrounded by pink blobs.
At least you got that Pichu :dance:
 

Master Bryss

zd zd
Hacker
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
85
Caught
Jun 16, 2019
Messages
298
Location
Scotland
Nature
Quirky
Pronouns
he/him
Pokémon Type
Poison, Steel
Pokédex Entry
Their body is made of an intricate and interconnected weave of their own puns.
The Roughneck Kirby vibes are strong with this one. I'm reminded of that show where a talking unicorn befriends a hard-boiled alcoholic ex-cop, in a really good way. It's magic, like your weird spoiler tags that don't say spoiler on them.
 

k80

h
Screenshotter
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
92
Caught
Jun 16, 2019
Messages
88
Location
h
Nature
Rash
Pronouns
she/her
Pokémon Type
Electric, Bug
Pokédex Entry
h
im so excited to see how timo handles having aalittle guy. it's literally perfect
 

SilverDoe

Conqueror of the Cinnabar Gym
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
37
Caught
Jun 10, 2019
Messages
96
Location
Verdanturf Town
Nature
Timid
Pronouns
She/Her
Pokémon Type
Water, Ghost
Seeing the adventures of Timo and his Cleffa will be fun. I love that he just sort of stumbled on the idea of stealing a Pokemon.
 

anonymouse

the plastic king of castle polyethylene
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
643
Caught
Aug 8, 2019
Messages
114
Location
southeastern USA
Nature
Sassy
Pronouns
any; they/them
Pokémon Type
Dark, Ground
Pokédex Entry
this pokemon spends far too much time in front of a laptop, someone unglue them.
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #13
the replies, they be a'comin
god timo is such a good character i love him. sometimes you're just drunk and steal a little pink guy and you know what? that's valid.
i'm glad other people love my dumpster fire son as much as i do.
God it's so fucking funny that this big tough guy breaks into a lab and decides to steal, fucking, this pink flufflord. The irony is so thick you could choke on it. I love it.
RNG couldn't have picked a better starter.
To be honest, I think Timo needs a hug.
A big loving hug.
Timo is at the top of the list of people who desperately need a good hug and who would deck anybody who tried.
The Roughneck Kirby vibes are strong with this one. I'm reminded of that show where a talking unicorn befriends a hard-boiled alcoholic ex-cop, in a really good way. It's magic, like your weird spoiler tags that don't say spoiler on them.
so i looked up the talking unicorn and ex-cop out of blind curiosity and i am so glad i did. thank you for making me aware that Happy! exists.
im so excited to see how timo handles having aalittle guy. it's literally perfect
if you like the "edgelord trying to be edgy despite being followed by a kawaii ray of sunshine who won't take their edginess for an answer" trope as much as i do, you will enjoy this.
Seeing the adventures of Timo and his Cleffa will be fun. I love that he just sort of stumbled on the idea of stealing a Pokemon.
more like fell back-asswards into it. in his defense, he was mildly concussed and also drunk. not in his defense, that's the sort of thing he'd have done even if he hadn't been drunk and mildly concussed.
gameplay update 2: switchin' up the order on ya!!


mirror world sprout tower is full of GOODIES

and raichu and swinub who won’t stay in damn pokeballs =/




and also steel type houndour with sonicboom and iron tail…



welp, this checkpoint will be busy af. (for those confused, the restrictions/rewards section has been updated since the last time i posted. but for better or worse that’s how it’s gonna be for the rest of the run; i won’t change it anymore.)

anyway, time to finish clearing out the tower. the monks are now chefs, apparently. i don’t want to know what they cook with…



did i bounce between the tower and the gym because i wanted to train before the miniboss that is the sage and then the proper boss of the gym leader, or because i just forgot which thing i was doing? yes.



okay, here’s where i decided to get serious about grinding. this also happened before the restriction/reward edit, which was also when i got over myself and looked at the randomization log. i generally don’t check the logs when i play randomizers, just because the surprise is half the appeal of them. but with this combination of restrictions, i can’t afford to do that. clearly.



what i learned when i checked the log is that neither natuRaleigh nor pichu perfect will learn any coverage by levelup. Raleigh’s sole niche will be sleep powder and eventually spore; perfect, however, is SOL.



sage time! i don’t count this as a proper boss, so the team is whatever levels they are.



that pineco had drill peck (fire/flying), the slugma had extremespeed (bug)?? and the chikorita is… still grass type.



Timo no don’t give your pokemon steroids



oh hey yeah this bit is accessible too…. can you tell i don’t play johto much



Timo is a mature adult y’all i swear



poor guy sure does a lot of falling on his ass.



YES we get to harness the power of bullshit for ourselvessss



might as well procrastinate and do everything except the gym leader!



r i p. i hope he learns a more reliable move soon. still, this is our only way to deal not NVE damage to steel types, so i’ll take what i can get.



also these are running around wild outside of Violet city.



that’s not what i meant by “a more reliable move,” Dyna.



EYES EMOJI



yeah fuck it, this will do. (also please note that i was an idiot and boxed Raleigh and perfect again. despite the team restriction that i sorta forgot about. still, neither of them would have made any appreciable difference to the bossfight.) it was pretty overkill to grind the team to the max 5 levels over Falkner as it was. the clutch by herself can carry the team pretty far on raw BST and also having toxic.



THEY CALL ME
DOCTOR LOVE



this round went about as you might expect.



:partytime:



our reward is… leech seed. thanks, Dr. Falkner.



oh well. time to finish up the last loose end before the checkpoint. egg get!



bless VBA’s turbo



hm, i have no idea where the other screens went, but a legend is electric/steel and has spark. a bit redundant, but at least she’ll get some viable move eventually. hopefully.



and that’s all the gameplay up to the first checkpoint. but before i go, a housekeeping note.



i finally remembered my own damn ruleset and pulled Raleigh and perfect back into the party. however, i do have a swap available. i go for best of three for my coinflips because i’m superstitious and, having called heads to take a legend, i got heads/tails/heads.



which leaves pichu perfect to languish in the box. a pichu with subpar stats that wouldn’t get good use out of any viable damaging move should i bother teaching one. and since the field items are randomized, i feel safe assuming i won’t get a thunderstone. or if i do it’ll be at the least useful point. and if/when i need to replace any of the current mons, perfect will be right back in, being dead weight.

the only thing i’d accomplish by switch training that bugger is running the risk of killing somebody else and then giving myself another fight in the future when eventually she dies. also mind that i did this gameplay a couple of days ago, before the ruleset changes. actually, the move reward is a thing because i foresaw more perfects clogging my box queue and didn’t want to hamstring myself like that.



releasing mons feels like it goes against the spirit of the team restriction, so even though i did that half out of desperation before the move reward got added in, i still feel bad about doing it. this is the only time i'm allowing myself to do this. still, releasing a useless mon is more in line with Timo’s MO than keeping dead weight or, worse, sacrificing dead weight. but it’s done and i saved again, so there’s no going back.
verse 2: can you say tonal whiplash



“What’s wrong, Eugene?” Jess’ question doesn’t sound urgent. It’s not unusual for Professor Elm to sound flustered like this. The man can make losing his glasses among the clutter of his lab into a national crisis.

“Someone stole a pokemon. One of the starters. Must’ve come through the window. It was open when I got in. Paper everywhere. Like, not in their usual places. It’s going to take me days to sort -”

“Slow down,” Jess interrupts. “I can hardly understand you. One of the starters you kept at the lab is missing?”

“Yes!” Elm wails.



The myriad other explanations Jess can think of for what Elm describes does not stop her from hurrying. If for no other reason than she needs to get there before Elm calls the police and makes things more complicated than they need to be.

When she arrives at Elm’s lab, it’s to the image of Dr. Eugene Elm, one of the foremost pokemon ecologists in the region, on hands and knees on the floor. Specifically, the back half of Dr. Eugene Elm. The front half is underneath his desk, from which the muffled sound of his voice emerges. “No, Tyson, give that back.” A squeak. “Cut it out!”

“Eugene?” Jess asks, caught between concern and amusement. The lab is even more messy than usual, and she can’t tell if it’s from the purported break-in or from Elm’s frantic searching.

A hollow thunk, the desk jolts, Elm curses, then he finally extracts himself from underneath it. A cyndaquil is tucked in his arm and his glasses are askew. “Jess?”

“Who did you think it was?” She crosses the room to take the cyndaquil from him. “Is Ty helping you clean up?”

“He’s making the mess worse,” Elm sighs. “Curie is the one missing. Vinnie hasn’t come out of his pokeball yet.” He gestures to the table, where an open pokeball rests next to one that is firmly shut and immobile. Usually the bulbasaur joins his fellow starters in roaming about the lab while Elm is in residence; evidently not today.

Jess surveys the lab again. On second inspection, the worst of the mess is localized to the area near the back window. She squints at the window, then walks toward it. When she opens the sliding pane, the morning’s warm breeze drifts through unhindered. “The screen is missing!”

“I told you they came in through the window!” Elm is pointing dramatically.

“Damn. Did you find the screen? Is it intact?”

“Yes, it was on the ground under the window. Not really damaged. Nothing is damaged, but things are missing.”

“Besides Curie?” Jess turns to frown at Elm. Tyson nudges her hand until she gives the cyndaquil an absentminded ear scratch.

Elm grabs handfuls of hair. “Does it look like I know yet? I’ve barely started sorting these notes. But if they stole a pokemon, it stands to reason they’d steal more. Probably they want my notes so they can publish under my nose and claim all the credit. It’s happened before in this community! You don’t think that hack Birch discovered the migratory patterns of tentacruel all by himself, do you?!”

Jess knows better than to go down that line of conversation. Instead, she asks, “Did anybody see anything? If the thief got in through this window, then they might’ve been spotted.”

The way Elm blinks at her tells Jess all she needs to know. She recrosses the room to pick Ty’s pokeball off the table. “Since you’re the only one who knows how things go around here, you focus on cleanup and inventory. I’ll get Tyson out of your hair and ask around. Maybe Ty can track Curie’s aura or something.”

Elm’s eyes light up. “You’re a saint.”



Even though she told Elm she’d use Tyson to try and track the missing cleffa, Jess is privately sure the cyndaquil won’t be able to do it. A cyndaquil’s psychic powers are still fairly underdeveloped compared to the devastating cryokinesis they’re capable of as typhlosion. Still, she takes Tyson to a spot just outside of Cherrygrove where she figures they have as good a chance as any at triangulating Curie’s location.

Tyson is already wriggling with excitement by the time Jess puts him down. Little shards of ice have already started to form on his back. “Okay, little guy. We’re looking for Curie. Can you find her?”

The cyndaquil is still nosing around in the grass, only visible by his icy quills. “Tyson? Can you find Curie?”

He looks up at her, then takes off north. Jess yelps and gives chase. “Where the fuck do you think you’re going, icicle butt?!”

As a human, Jess might have longer legs, but Tyson can easily fit under bushes that Jess has to circumnavigate. They’re almost to Violet City when he finally slows down enough that Jess can scoop him off the ground. “What was that all about?”

A loud noise in the near distance, almost directly ahead, draws Jess’ attention before she can finish scolding Tyson. It sounds like a pokemon fight; maybe the local kids sparring. She steps forward, leaning around a tree to get a look at the action.

A rhydon and a machamp face each other. That’s not unheard of in this area (though that, like the ice currently chilling her skin, feels like an odd thought for no reason she can think of), though what is unusual is the human standing a safe distance behind the rhydon. Jess recognizes the faded hoodie and jeans.

“Huh.” She hadn’t pinned Timo as any kind of trainer. Not with how indifferent he seemed to pokemon in general. But hey, if he’s able to travel with pokemon, that’s probably for the best for everyone. Get him out of New Bark.

Then a pair of brown ears emerge from the folds of the hood. They are followed by a familiar pink ball of fluff. The cleffa rises up to pat Timo on the shoulder, peeping. Timo cranes his head around to address her.

Jess almost doesn’t recognize him when his face isn’t pinched into a sneer.

“Tyson, you little shithead,” Jess mutters under her breath. “You found Curie. Why didn’t we suspect Timo from the beginning? Who the hell else has any reason to steal from Eugene’s lab?”

… Now what? Confront him? Call Elm? She knows what will happen if she tells Elm she found the thief. He’ll call the police, and since Elm is employed by the League, the police will treat the petty theft of a small and not very powerful pokemon way more seriously than necessary. Timo is an ass, but does she dislike him enough to leave him to the mercy of the police?

The pokemon battle ends with the machamp retreating, limping, from the rhydon’s venomous strikes. Timo walks forward to give the rhydon an approving clap on the haunch, then returns it in a flash of red light.

Jess steps out of her shelter and strides up the path. Timo glances over his shoulder, casually at first; once he recognizes her, however, his body goes tense and the sneer returns. He turns away again without making eye contact.

“That cleffa belongs to the professor,” Jess says without preamble.

“I dunno what you’re talking about.”

“Pi!” A tiny pink paw waves happily at Jess.

“Don’t play dumb.” Timo is walking away, so Jess breaks into a trot to catch up. “Cleffa aren’t wild in this area. There’s nowhere else you could’ve gotten one.”

Timo still doesn’t look at her or stop walking. “So fuckin’ call the cops. I don’t care.”

“You might when they charge you for stealing League property. That’s a felony charge.”

“You say that like I give a fuck.”

“You do know they put you through way more bullshit for a felony than for some misdemeanor, right? That’s how -”

Timo stops dead, glaring at her. “I know what a fucking felony means. I’ve committed a few before. Either go call the goddamn cops or fuck off and leave me alone.”

Jess stops, too. “And if I don’t?”

Timo’s regard turns wary. “What?”

“What would you do if I didn’t? Call the cops, I mean.” She considers. “Or leave you alone, actually. I don’t feel like letting you run free with a pokemon that doesn’t belong to you, even if I’m not interested in getting the police involved.”

Timo rolls his eyes. He walks forward, ignoring how close Jess is to his intended path. She doesn’t get out of his way. Their shoulders jolt when he brushes past her. “Do whatever you want. But if it looks like you’re stalking me, it won’t turn out well.”

“Oh, how ominous,” Jess drawls sarcastically as she turns in place to watch him. “What are you gonna do? Give me a bad time? Call the cops?”

Timo doesn’t respond.

At any stage of the checkpoint, your character relives a traumatic memory. The degree to which they relive this memory and the level of trauma associated with it is at your discretion. The memory is then removed from your main character (temporarily or permanently at your discretion) and they are left only with the emotions it invoked.

Now that the ragtag group of pokemon Timo has put together are stronger, not much troubles them. Which is good, because Timo’s grasp of which pokemon are what type and how they interact is tenuous at best. Brute force has, so far, done the trick.

One or two specific kinds of pokemon are the exception. The dogs with metallic plates and spikeys; those are tricky. The one facing them charges for another attack; Timo shouts, but Half saur has already lurched out of the way. The houndour’s iron tail attack lands hard on the empty ground. Snarling, the houndour struggles upright again and gapes its mouth open.

It doesn’t bark. Timo has no words to describe the hugeness of the noise that the houndour makes; so huge that Timo swears he can see it rippling through the air toward Half saur. The ivysaur is as paralyzed by the sound as Timo; he crouches, eyes squeezed shut, unaware that the odd ripples in the air are propagating toward him.

The sound vibrates through Timo, even the air in his sinuses, bringing tears to his eyes. He raises a hand to scrub his face. Then the noise ends so abruptly, leaving Timo’s ears ringing, that he holds still for a moment before cautiously lowering his arm and blinking.

Half saur is still crouched down where he was before. Not moving. For some reason, Treble stands between him and the houndour. She lashes out at it, and with the battering the houndour already took, it flees with tail tucked. Half saur still hasn’t moved.

Timo wobbles over to them. “Hey-” He stops talking. His own voice sounds like it’s filtering through a wad of cotton. There’s no way the two critters who took the force of the attack can hear him at all. Treble certainly doesn’t act like she can hear him. She’s turned to pat Half saur’s warty head insistently.

That’s when Timo notices the thin ribbon of red that trickles down from the ivysaur’s ear pit. Ribbons plural; both ears are bleeding. Timo is still sort of dizzy, but even through the fog he feels a pang of guilt. He turns, yanks his backpack over, and digs through it for a potion, cussing under his breath despite not being able to hear himself.

The fine aerosol of healing potion settles on Half saur’s head. For lack of anything better to do, Timo shuffles over to start checking him for other obvious injuries. Treble is still patting his head.

Half saur stirs a little. Not much. But when Timo begins gently probing his back leg where he took a glancing iron tail from the houndour, suddenly Half saur is up and whirling around, making a shrill noise that barely makes it through the cottony film. A fist-sized lump of rock flies up from out of nowhere to hit Timo in the shoulder. Another scours a cut on his cheek while a third, larger stone thuds into his chest.


She’s still screaming even if there aren’t any more words he can understand. The pots and pans have mostly stopped flying, too, but he’s too scared to come out. Can’t Dad hear her?


Timo’s knuckles hurt because he’s biting down on them to stifle the sobs trying to claw their way up his throat. He flinches when something else hits - no. This is a softer touch. A tiny, warm paw pats the arm that’s curled protectively over his head. His ears still ring. He realizes he’s shaking.

Slowly, Timo unfolds himself from his fetal ball. Slowly because he’s bruised and abraded, and because there are still a few of Half saur’s rocks half on him. Slowly because a formless terror still lurks in the back of his head, trying to tell him that if he moves - something. What?

Treble is still patting him. Now that he’s uncurled a little, she’s stroking his cheek. Her paw comes away damp from the tear trails cutting down his face. Timo reaches up to catch her paw. “I’m okay,” is what he meant to say. It comes out as a hoarse croak.

Timo swallows thickly. “I’m okay.” The words are intelligible now, at least. Treble peeps reproachfully at him. He can barely hear it over the tinnitus. Clearly, she doesn’t believe him. He doesn’t believe him, either. But what is he supposed to say?

Timo straightens as much as he can and wipes his face. Which hurts. Which reminds him, very belatedly, of what happened to leave him huddling among a pile of rocks. He looks around for Half saur. But the ivysaur is nowhere to be seen. "Where did he go?" Timo looks down at Treble, as if the cleffa can even understand him, much less answer. She's clinging to his knee now and peeps up at him. He huffs. "Never mind." Timo is too tired and sore, mentally and physically, to give two shits anymore. He scoops Treble up. "Let's just go."
 
Last edited:

BadgerDaddy

The Cringe is strong with this one
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
1442
Caught
Feb 4, 2020
Messages
166
Location
Near, far, wherever you are
Nature
Impish
Pronouns
She/Her
Pokémon Type
Water, Dark
Pokédex Entry
This was a mistake!
This one was amazing!
Loved to see Jess' side of the story and that she is more of the "hero" of the game, while Timo is the actual "rival".
Treble is a sweetheart and I know that she has the potential to crack Timo's shell.
Timo might not be good with human, but he sure is awesome with Pokemon.
 

Sheepscope

Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Hacker
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
71
Caught
Jun 16, 2019
Messages
203
Location
A bed, with wall-to-wall books and a papery carpet
Nature
Adamant
Pronouns
She and they in no particular order, he very rarely; I'm beginning to think that I'm gender-fluid or flux. I have no clue, and I'm probably overthinking this.
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Poison
Pokédex Entry
Constantly in search of the highest challenge, this person takes up the most impractical rulesets.
mentioning people's undergarments in public smh

On another note, I love how he put Cleffa in her Pokeball for her to pop back out a second later, and just hold it like a toy. And her incorruptible spirit so far is a great foil for him!
 

Jimcloud

Administrator
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Writer
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Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
3
Caught
May 13, 2019
Messages
848
Pronouns
they/he/she
Oh my god I love Jess so much, like she's competent but she's not bland either, and I respect that about her. Shame about the whole 'artificial manipulation' thing but you can't win 'em all can you.

God, you did a real good job of writing that whole traumatic incident with Timo, that shit is downright gripping. Loved that, damn.

In exchange, let me offer (again) my own take on Jess's history:

Sometimes, Jess dreams.

Not often enough that she keeps her clock on it, but enough that she remembers specific sorts of dreams she gets. She has a kind that she calls "Jessa dreams" (privately, because she would never talk about them) where she feels like she remembers someone else's life, so close to hers, but yet so far away.

Jess dreams about a red-haired young woman, bent over a desk, propped up only by caffeine and desperation. She knows the girl is going to fail her midterm, and the girl knows it, too. She'll pull through the class, barely, but it won't stop her from worrying the whole way through.

Jess doesn't know what that's like. She was a Dean's List type of student. Others were jealous of her, sometimes, but she tried her best to let it ride off her back.

Still, though, something in her can't help but empathize with the one who passed out on their study sheet, three hours before the exam. She's not sure why.

Jess dreams about a woman lying on her bed, one hand gripping her phone like a vise, the other gripping her hair twice as tight. The woman's friend is in the hospital, intensive care. He overdosed on some chemical cocktail he took at a party the woman had tried to convince him not to go to.

Jess doesn't know what that's like. Not in the sense that none of her friends were troublemakers - she was a bit of a spitfire in her youth, herself - but more in the sense that when push came to shove, she kept her friends out of dangerous situations. Things got dicey sometimes, but she was there for them when they needed it. It's why she was confident she could help Timo, given the time and even an ounce of his trust in her.

Still, though, something in her can't help but empathize with the one who cried into her pillow, wondering if things could have gone better if she'd just gone with him. She's not sure why.

Jess dreams about a woman who laughs quietly when her friend asks if she bought a couple new purses for the midterm, or if the bags under her eyes meant she was just as nervous about it as she was. She dreams about after school cram sessions together, growing closer, drinks and jokes shared about terrible, unhelpful professors.

Jess dreams about a woman who brings a change of clothes to her friend in the hospital, and assures him that his parents didn't know anything. She dreams about a woman who makes plans for coffee, for the mall, for the movies, with the desperate fervor you only see in someone who Death looked in the eyes as they passed by.

She dreams about a woman with struggles… and a woman who finds some happiness in them.

Jess doesn't know what that's like. Jess is happy. There's no reason she shouldn't be happy.

Right?
 
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anonymouse

the plastic king of castle polyethylene
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
643
Caught
Aug 8, 2019
Messages
114
Location
southeastern USA
Nature
Sassy
Pronouns
any; they/them
Pokémon Type
Dark, Ground
Pokédex Entry
this pokemon spends far too much time in front of a laptop, someone unglue them.
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #17
replies! ??
Treble is a sweetheart and I know that she has the potential to crack Timo's shell.
Timo might not be good with human, but he sure is awesome with Pokemon.
if anything can it will be the smol bean!
On another note, I love how he put Cleffa in her Pokeball for her to pop back out a second later, and just hold it like a toy. And her incorruptible spirit so far is a great foil for him!
Treble is not going to take Any of her human's edgy bullshit.
Oh my god I love Jess so much, like she's competent but she's not bland either, and I respect that about her. Shame about the whole 'artificial manipulation' thing but you can't win 'em all can you.
bonus content!
It burns. Everywhere, it burns. Iron glowing like it must have when it ruptured from the belly of a dying star, eating into his skin. It takes its toll of flesh and pain in return for the only price that’s worth anything: power.

All in vain…


Timo jerked awake with a gasp and writhed, shuddering, until Treble’s concerned peeping broke through his near panic. She patted his sweat-damp face while Timo sucked in lungfuls of air that were, notably, neither hot nor flavored with the reek of scorched hair.

It had been a dream. It had felt… too real to be a dream. He had flashbacks in dreams, sometimes, but… Timo ran a tentative hand down his left arm. No, still just the same. Only the faint ripples left from the linework of his sleeve. No evidence that a brand had ever touched it. Not a flashback. No matter how real it had felt.

Well, if his subconscious wanted him to get scarification to go with the tattoos, it needed to present the notion in a more pleasant way. And preferably not at ass o’clock at night.

Treble hadn’t stopped fretting, so he gathered her into his arms, pulling her away from his face. “M’okay, squeaker. Calm down. Go back t’sleep.” Why Treble wouldn’t sleep in her pokeball like the others, insisting on being right with him all damn night, he didn’t understand. It would be cute if it wasn’t hard to sleep with this little pink furnace glued to him. Maybe that was why he had that dream.

He couldn’t get back to sleep. Whatever that dream had been, the feelings it evoked - a despairing sort of anger that curdled in his stomach - lingered in the back of his head, refusing to be dismissed or forgotten. He hated that feeling. He spent most of his waking time pissed off, sure, but that flavor was not the kind that propelled him through his bullshit day. It was the kind that made him stew in the bullshititude of everything for hours, unable to sleep or think about anything else. It was pointless and stupid and didn’t do him any good.

Finally, Timo relinquished his grip on Treble so he could climb out of the nest of pine needles forming his bed. The banked fire glittered redly in the dark, giving him an unwanted reminder of the nightmare. Irritably, he stalked over to the patch he’d cleared down to the dirt for the fire and began adding more wood to the pile of ash and embers. With a little prodding, he got the fire stirred back to crackling life.

Treble tottled over to sit next to him. She flattened her ears, eyes squinting, making Timo think of a weird pink cat basking in front of a fireplace.

“Why does your PC info say you’re a bug?” he said, poking Treble’s ear until she twitched it and looked at him.

“You look nothing like a bug,” he told her. “Clutch doesn’t look poisonous. Raleigh isn’t in any way grass-like. Am I just reading the screen wrong? The damn text looks like it was written in Galarian and translated to Johtoan by a Hoennese grade-schooler. And that’s before you have to use three mile-long dropdown menus to check one ‘mon’s moves.”

Treble continued staring at him, looking for all the world like she was listening earnestly. “Pi?”

He huffed and shook his head. “It doesn’t matter. You lot can battle; that’s the important thing. We can get out of here and go - somewhere else. Where, I dunno. But somewhere else.” Through the trees, he could barely make out the diffuse sodium orange glow of streetlamps along Route 36. “Maybe the next Center won’t be so uptight about the whole ‘no trainer ID’ thing and let me get a room. You’d think they wouldn’t care as long as my money’s good.”

“Pi.” Treble patted his knee as if to reassure him. Timo ruffled her ears.

“Yeah, that orderly at the desk did sound off. Bet she was new, didn’t want to get in trouble. Sure sounded like she was reciting the script her bosses gave her.” He glanced back down at the fire, picked up a spare stick, and used it to stir the fire up a bit. “Even if the pattern continues, it’s not like it’s a problem. I’ve camped out enough; we’ll be fine.” At least this time he could buy food instead of having to -

A crescendoing noise like the torture of a forest ripped through the still air. Timo was on his feet before his mind had fully processed the sound, its direction, and what the hell it meant. From the east? Not far. What fucking fell!? Treble was clutching his leg, fur on end until she looked even more spherical than usual.

Timo hastily grabbed his pokeballs, returning Treble and stuffing them all into his ratty backpack. Once he kicked enough dirt over the fire to put it out, he slung the pack over his shoulder and set off at a lope back toward Violet City.
side note?
i'm not saying this is a soft notepad locke because Timo is barely literate and can't use the PCs right. but i am saying that i imagine Bill's versions of PCs to be like how computers are described in the first Dirk Gently novel by Douglas Adams. who'd have thought that a mere pokedex would actually come in handy... too bad he burned that bridge before even becoming aware of it.

if somebody wants to keep a running tally of all the times a telling clue that things are Not As They Seem goes right over Timo's dumbass head, go for it. i'll be curious to know the total by the end.
 
Last edited:

Jimcloud

Administrator
Administrator
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Writer
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Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
3
Caught
May 13, 2019
Messages
848
Pronouns
they/he/she
Anonymouse you're spoiling me all the time every day and I'm absolutely living here.

Am loving these not at all ominous dreams you got going on here. Maybe another day for the freaky hand scars, Timo.

I really love the dynamic between Treble and Timo. Treble is just a concerned baby and they're extremely good!!!

Timo is... doing his best to reason out the circumstances of his existence here, he's just, very bad at it. Which is... mostly understandable, I think. I get it this time. You poor fool. Maybe someday he'll figure it out.
 

Second

A Yu-Gi-Oh! Protagonist but in Real Life
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
206
Caught
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
543
Nature
Quirky
Pronouns
They / Them
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Ice
Pokédex Entry
This Pokemon has a tendency to start many projects as they come to mind, but they tend to only finish projects other people have made deadlines for.
Timo: Hey Treble you don't look like a bug
Timo: ...I'm sure this isn't anything too important to worry about right now.

In Timo's defense, this isn't an easy thing to figure out, you know? That ominous dream, too... Hopefully the wholesome of Treble helps Timo deal with the fact that his life's already just a nightmare, huh.
 

anonymouse

the plastic king of castle polyethylene
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
643
Caught
Aug 8, 2019
Messages
114
Location
southeastern USA
Nature
Sassy
Pronouns
any; they/them
Pokémon Type
Dark, Ground
Pokédex Entry
this pokemon spends far too much time in front of a laptop, someone unglue them.
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #20
replies!
Timo is... doing his best to reason out the circumstances of his existence here, he's just, very bad at it. Which is... mostly understandable, I think. I get it this time. You poor fool. Maybe someday he'll figure it out.
In Timo's defense, this isn't an easy thing to figure out, you know? That ominous dream, too... Hopefully the wholesome of Treble helps Timo deal with the fact that his life's already just a nightmare, huh.
he hasn't had a turn at the brain cell in a while, he's not used to it.
gameplay shenanigans
first up, showdown replays! for the Sprout Tower staked challenge, feat: me convincingly replicating Timo's intriguing battle style.

and for the fight against Half saur as per my own dumbass rules. featuring Half saur being a total badass and making me sadder that he's not around.

you'll note that Raleigh and a legend use their STAB during the staked challenge fight. i wasn't about to go into that hot mess with only 4.5 out of 6 of my team usable, so the whole only physical damaging moves thing is gonna be a predominantly in-game rule. i may or may not continue to bend it for future showdown matches, depending on how badly it will cripple me. don't be surprised if that exception happens again for the unsafe staked challenges.

and since i emerged from those unscathed, Timo gets to reap the benefits! as the challenge reward, i got a copy of TM16, double kick! super fang and slash were also contenders, but i knew Jim wouldn't let me have super fang yet, so i can be happy with double kick.



👀 👀 👀

i was torn over whether to give this to Dyna, who desperately needs something better than dynamic punch, or to one of the newbies with no valid moves. it boils down to this: dynamic punch is better than nothing at all.



a legend will eventually learn a physical move. at level 31. and it won't even be stab. so since a legend was truly a legend in the Tower challenge and i would like her to be useful, she gets to use her legys to Kick.

as for our last dead weight team member, i decided to use the free move reward from my ruleset to make Raleigh useful for more than just sleep.



as i was rummaging around in the bag, i remembered the carbos i picked up in sprout tower. might as well put this to good use, too!



evolve you cute little fucker

the following actually happened a few days ago, but i didn't want to post five screenshots for no reason, so we get these here. this isn't something Timo would be observant enough to do, but i want the goodies, so he can shut up and use the braincell while he's got it.



despite the new moves and also the fresh water reward for the RP challenge that i totally remembered to give myself before just now, i was feeling particularly antsy about having supplies. besides, if Timo is habitually poor until after Goldenrod, even when i inevitably suck at voltorb flip, it won't be the end of the world! so the stardust and such got deposited and Timo ran his account dry on meds.



to cap things off, i caught the stragglers up. now everybody is the same level and i feel good about it.



words
By the time he’s halfway to town, Timo wonders why he’s even bothering to investigate the noise. Yeah, big crashing noise, big fucking deal. It’s the middle of the night and there’s no one he even knows, much less gives a shit about, in this town. Well, he’s awake, so he might as well rubberneck a bit and at least see what happened.

The only thing Violet City has in the way of a skyline boils down to a single building: a tall tower, the only notable landmark in the place, that looks like it’s made completely of wood. Some old historical site, no doubt. And it’s on fire.

Not badly, Timo realizes as he gets closer. Just some smoke coming out an upper window near the roof. But when the whole shebang is wooden, it won’t stay that way for long. Timo glances around as he realizes there’s a suspicious lack of people screaming in alarm. Actually, there’s next to no one else out here gawking. He sees one whole passerby who’s going about their business quite as if the beloved local landmark isn’t on fucking fire. No fire alarms are going off, no sign of any fire department, volunteer or otherwise, mobilizing to put out the blaze.

Timo looks from the empty streets to the tower’s upper story. Now there’s flames licking out the window along with the smoke. He glances at the street. The one passerby is gone. Back to the burning tower. Back to the street.

“Fuck it,” Timo mutters to himself. He hitches his backpack higher and trots through the open gate into the tower’s grounds. Here he finds activity: a few monk-looking people gathered in a cluster near the door. They’ve got their heads craned back to stare at the gouts of fire Timo already noticed. He follows their gaze on instinct just in time to see a boulder – not a rock, a fucking human-sized boulder – fly out the window and come plummeting to the ground. The monks and Timo scatter out of its path and still get showered with dirt when it hits the ground.

“Fuck,” Timo says again, for emphasis. The monks ignore him. He looks up toward the sizable hole in the wall, from which smoke is spewing with increased vigor. Something else bursts free, but instead of falling, it wheels unsteadily in the air. Soon it’s joined by other shapes. Some of them are smaller and make raucous complaints while the larger ones remain silent. He sees flashes of white and green feathers that look familiar; they must be critters like Raleigh. Not sure about the small squawky ones, though..

Another, smaller rock ejecting itself from the tower breaks Timo from his contemplation of the bird pokemon. Right, tower on fire. And also spontaneously tearing itself apart from the inside? The creaking, groaning sound of straining wood hasn’t stopped radiating out of the place. He watches the smaller rock induce another scattering and regrouping of the monks and decides that behavior is really fucking weird. He can’t put his finger on why, it just is. Maybe it’s… well, why aren’t they trying to do anything about the fire? Why isn’t there a fire service here, or something? In a foresty area like this, you’d think they’d have some way to handle fire. He’s already trooping into the half-open double doors before he can really wonder what the fuck he thinks he’s doing.

The bottom floor is completely empty and pitch dark, forcing Timo to pause long enough to dig his flashlight out of his backpack. He also withdraws a pokeball from it and sends out the clutch, just in case the bigass stone rhino might be useful holding off some falling debris. She helps loft Timo up to the second story when the ladder proves too badly damaged to be trustworthy and, despite a rumbling groan of protest, consents to follow him on foot across the unsteady second floor.

The sound of Sprout Tower catching on fire and disgorging several large rocks doesn’t wake Jess. What wakes her is her pidgey’s shrill alarm call as the flock of spearow disturbed from their roost passes overhead. She lurches upright and then has to flail desperately to keep from falling off the narrow cot. “Sonofafuckohmygodwhat?!”

Tyson, his back abristle with icicles, watches wide-eyed as Jess gathers Piper to her and strokes the pidgey’s back soothingly. By the time she gets Piper settled, Claudius the shellder has also cracked his shell open a bit to peer out at them.

“It’s okay, kids,” Jess croons. She doesn’t get any further when a long, tortured groan makes everyone in the room jump and stare toward the window. Nothing is visible through it as the sound fades into an echo. Jess reaches for her clothes with her free hand. “Let’s, uh, go see what that was, huh?”

By the time Jess arrives on scene, Tyson on her shoulder, trying to wrestle her hair into some approximation of a ponytail, part of the outer wall of Sprout Tower has collapsed. The monks are huddled about the wreckage in a way that Jess only has time to register as weird when the piercing cry of an aerodactyl rings out from overhead.

The creature himself comes tumbling out of the gaping hole in the Tower, pursued by a xatu. The aerodactyl isn’t moving right; his wings flap slowly, hesitantly, and he tumbles, barely catching himself on a broken spar of wood before going limp. The circling xatu shrieks when a wave of ear-shattering sound blasts from the opening before it can finish off the helpless aerodactyl. It, too, tumbles gracelessly from the air. It isn’t lucky enough to catch itself.

That’s all it takes for Jess to sprint into the Tower’s rubble-strewn foyer. Tyson’s guidance helps her pick her way toward the ladder… which has already collapsed, taking part of the ceiling with it. Jess cranes her head up, knowing trying to look through is as futile as being in here is stupid, but she can’t just leave.

The question of what she can do is answered when a few generously sized rocks crash through the ceiling. Some of them move, resolving into the shape of a rhydon painfully extracting herself from the rubble. Another, smaller shape dives through, landing solidly on the rhydon’s back, sending her to the floor again.

Jess is only aware that she’s running forward when a human voice from above bellows down, “BACK OFF YOU STUPID FUCKWIT!” The words recall her to her senses just in time to avoid being splashed by the foul-smelling, tarry sludge that gushes from the rhydon’s mouth. Coughing, as much at the acrid scent as the smoke, she cranes her head up.

Timo disappears from her view, lit as it is by the flickering firelight that’s slowly consuming the uppermost floor, to shout again at something happening on the second level. There’s a thunder of hooves as more fire blossoms.

Fuck, too much going on, can’t focus! A squeak of warning from Tyson brings Jess’ attention back to the duel right in front of her; she scrambles away from a shower of stones from the – ivysaur? Yes, the ivysaur still facing the rhydon. Once she’s at a safeish distance, Jess puts Tyson down. “Can you break up the fight? Don’t get in the middle of it, just distract them both.” The cyndaquil chirps an affirmative and scuttles over the debris toward the combatants.

Forming ice around the rhydon and ivysaur’s feet doesn’t work. Jess splits her attention between Tyson and whatever chaos is happening above. It sounds like a battle royale between at least three pokemon, given the noise. She hears Timo’s voice coming through in bits and snatches. She’s pretty sure she hears him hacking, but it might just be her own she hears.

Something very near Jess goes crack! She looks toward the fight ahead, only for her vision to fill with a boulder almost her size. A boulder that slows, stops, and begins to accelerate in the opposite direction, cloaked in a corona of indigo light. The boulder whizzes through the middle of the altercation between ivysaur and rhydon, both of whom reel backward to dodge it and turn to gawk at – at the quilava whose icy hackles still hold the incandescence of evolution.

That indigo aura flares up about the heads of both pokemon. The rhydon begins to relax, but the ivysaur shrieks and flings more stones at Tyson. While the quilava dodges, the rhydon spews another torrent of sludge at the ivysaur.

The cacophony from upstairs goes quiet. Jess blinks, stunned by the sudden silence. Tyson slithers over to her, one eye still on the tableau between rhydon and ivysaur. But the ivysaur hasn’t moved.

The silence doesn’t last long. A creak and a crash sounds far overhead, followed momentarily by a shower of glowing embers. Tyson hisses when they land on his back. That snaps Jess out of her reverie; she staggers through the debris over to him and scoops Tyson up. His body is cold, but with the air growing hotter and hotter, that’s fine. “Good job, buddy,” she breathes into his fur.

The rhydon clomps over. Jess sidles aside, frowning worriedly at the rhydon’s heavy limp. “Hey, Timo, you–” He drops from the floor above. The rhydon reaches up to catch him, but he’s too far to the side and her reaction is slow, so he lands amid the rubble instead. Jess isn’t the only one who yelps.

“Fuck off, I’m fine,” Timo growls at the rhydon, who’s rumbling concernedly at him. “You’re limping more than me.” A flash of red light envelops the rhydon and whirls her back into the pokeball. Only then does he begin hauling himself upright with a grimace. “Fuck…”

Jess walks up to offer him a hand up. Timo looks at her warily for a long moment. Is he concussed and can't recognize her? No, he finally takes her hand and lets her pull him to his feet. “Thanks.”

Jess has already let go and turned. “Are all your–” she has to pause to cough– “pokemon safe? Let’s get out of this wreck and then we can talk.”

They both stagger out of the Tower’s doors, past the yard full of monks still cluelessly milling, and out into the cool night. Jess beckons to Timo to follow her; she’s pretty surprised that he does. They pass the blank-faced night clerk without acknowledgment. Only when they’re both safely behind the door of the guest room does Jess turn to stare hard at Timo.

‘A bedraggled wreck’ is the phrase that comes to Jess’ mind to describe him. Both eyes are red from the smoke, his already ratty clothes stained with soot and singed or torn in places. He's also got that thousand yard look on his face that makes her think he really is concussed. She shakes her head.

“Before you ask,” Timo begins. He turns his face, burying it in his elbow to hack up a lung. When he speaks again, his voice is a rasp. “That was happening before I showed up. Fire and all. And no, I dunno why. Believe me or don’t; I don’t care.”

Jess huffs. “That wasn’t my first assumption. Not that I doubt your capacity for arson. But I figured you wouldn’t be stupid enough to set a place on fire and not leave an escape route so you weren’t trapped.”

The way he rolls his eyes makes her think he’s been that stupid before, but thankfully for him, she believes his claim of innocence. She doesn’t know why. It’s just a gut thing. She waves her hand dismissively. “Never mind that. If you got there before I did, you know more about what happened than me. Care to explain?”

He scoffs. Then he coughs into his sleeve again. Jess resists the urge to reach out. “Got a lungful of smoke, huh?” she suggests wryly.

“Or two,” he croaks. Jess gets up to retrieve a paper cup of water from the bathroom and passes it to him. Timo chugs the contents in a single gulp. “I have no idea what happened. It was on fire when I got there. Rocks flying. Didn’t know where from until…”

“Until…?” The way his narrative trails off only increases Jess’ interest. “Until what? I saw the ivysaur fighting your rhydon.”

Timo stares hard at the cheap digital alarm clock on the bedside table. “Until I saw him. The fire came from the ninetales, I think. They and–” cough– “whatever other critters lived in that tower were going berserk. Dunno why. Attacking each other; us; everything.” He shrugs. And coughs. “That’s when you showed up. Clutch and Half – the ivysaur fell through. Left me to fend off the wilds with the rest of my team.”

By now, Jess can clearly hear how short of breath Timo is, and his coughs just make her already raw throat tickle in sympathy. Her desire to get the full story isn’t as strong as her concern for this bonehead’s health. “Look, why don’t you crash here? Take a shower in the morning. I’ll get a different room and we can talk more once we’ve slept.” She gets up with the intention of not giving him an opportunity to protest. Maybe it’s because he’s in the middle of another coughing fit, but her tactic works, and she can shut the door without argument. The night shift clerk makes a token protest to her request for a second room, but stubbornness wins in the end. Stubbornness and maybe because she probably looks almost as singed as Timo.

To Jess’ genuine surprise, Timo emerges into the pokemon center lobby late the next morning, fuzz of hair still damp from a shower, and after dumping all six of his pokeballs into the hands of the nurse on duty, shuffles over to where she sits. Jess shoves two convenience store breakfast sandwiches across to him and is even more pleased when he unwraps the first without hesitation and eats it in three bites.

Jess pushes a bottle of water over to him next, then goes back to sipping her shitty gas station coffee while she waits for Timo to finish eating. Both sandwiches and the water are swiftly reduced to wrappers and an empty bottle. Timo exhales gustily and folds himself forward onto the Formica tabletop. “Thanks,” he mutters.

“You’re welcome.” Jess smiles into her coffee. She almost thanks him for not bolting, but opts to minimize the snark while she can. “I asked around this morning, and nobody has an answer for why the pokemon in Sprout Tower went bonkers. They all agree that’s what happened, they just don’t know why. The Tower was pretty much gone before the firefighters dispatched from Goldenrod could get here.”

Timo lifts his head to squint at her. “Riddle me this. Why’s a place like this, with that whole-ass wooden tower and all this pine forest in all directions, not have a fire department of their own? If there’d been any wind last night, it could’ve torched the whole forest.”

Ah, so there is at least one braincell in there. Jess nods. “I agree, and I don’t know, either.” She shrugs. “The bottom line is that the Tower is gone. It was mostly collapsed by the time the firefighters arrived and went all the way down not long after.”

Timo rubs his face with both hands. Leaving one elbow on the table, he props his chin in that hand and drops the other. His eyes still look red and sore. “So… they say the critters in there went nuts. For no apparent reason?”

Jess nods. “Pretty much.”

“Great. Was there any collateral damage?”

She twists her mouth into a grimace. “Not much property damage besides some soot and scorch marks. Some of the monks got burns or smoke inhalation, but they – and us, I guess – are the worst off humans. They don’t know yet how many pokemon were trapped, but…” she shrugs.

Timo nods. His expression of tired indifference doesn’t change. “Figures.” He straightens. “Well. Thanks for the food and letting me use the room.” He begins to shove himself up.

Jess stands up, too. “Where are you going?”

He raises his eyebrows. “Away from here before the cops or firefighters think to question the nearest witnesses. Even if they agree it was the local wildlife and not arson, I don’t feel like explaining to the authorities what the hell I was doing in a burning building last night. D’you?”

Okay, Jess has to admit she gets that. She tries to think of something else she can say or do to make Timo not go haring off when he might still be ill from smoke inhalation, but he’s already slung his backpack over his shoulder and gone to pick up his pokemon from the nurse. Besides, she’s pushed her luck enough. It’s a surprise to have had a civil conversation with him for the first time maybe ever. Best not to push it.

The toll of pokemon injured or killed by the Sprout Tower collapse is eventually reported, and the number is lower than many feared it might be. A significant majority of the Tower’s wild population seems to have fled before the collapse, leaving only a few to fall victim to the accident. Some are even recovered alive; all of those who are rushed to medical care survive, though very few are returned to the wild quickly.

One particular set of remains puzzles the fire marshal and everyone else involved in the investigation. A set of ivysaur bones found at the very bottom of the pile of rubble. The skeleton is picked completely clean of soft tissue and the bones are bleached, as if the poor creature died weeks or months before the accident. Yet it sits among the destruction, not within the stone foundations of the building as if it had been buried. All signs point to the ivysaur having died during the collapse, except for the inexplicable aging of the skeleton.

None of the locals recall anyone owning an ivysaur. If a trainer ever passed through with one, it was not something anyone took note of. But though perplexing, the matter pales in significance compared to the impact of the Tower’s collapse on Violet City. Inquiries and investigations into what caused the wild pokemon of the tower to go berserk is ongoing.
 

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