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Screenshot Mixed Media [MW2] The Mundane | Back Against the Wall

Thread Description
Latest: Part 5 (3/07/20)

TinyCurlyFry

Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Artist
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
55
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
63
Nature
Timid
Pronouns
She/her, but they/them is also fine
Pokémon Type
Ground, Ice
With his back against the wall,
the rest of him facing the void-
a young man screams

No one's really sure why he's so freaked out.​

There are no restrictions to catches, however, Pokemon are terrifying hell creatures and Phoenix will prefer to use the 'normal' ones. Normal type pokemon are given priority for the party if caught.
Mirror World's rules and randomizer settings apply.
I'm not really going to apply a reward to the extra rule about Normal types replacing others on the team, but a reward may be decided upon as the run moves forward.

Intro- You're Here!
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6

My hand reaches out and takes the loose form of a hand, still unsure and wary of the strange figure. As soon as their hand is in mine I feel it smile, a strange sensation I immediately decide I hate. And then, my eyes catch movement at the back of the room, smoke is enveloping ...something, and in an instant it disappears. No, wait. Not disappeared. Taken.

My head snaps back to the figure before me, panicked and furious. The thing’s smile grows. Oh, do not worry Phoenix. This is all part of the game. The terms are still as agreed upon.

“No, they’re not! This changes everyth-” I look down to notice smoke beginning to coil around myself. I try to take a step forward, “NO, NO NO-”


“NO!” I bolt up from my bed, hand lunging forward at the empty air.

Ah, a dream. I relax a bit, bringing in the hand to rub at my face tiredly. What I could remember from the dream was already fragmented, but the sense of panic still grips my stomach. Cool, I think bitterly, what a great start to the day.

What time was it anyway?



I need to call work! I need to make breakfast for myself and-

I jump out of bed only to stumble with a sudden dizzy spell. For the second time I go to rub my face, but I stop, looking at the room through my fingers.



This… isn’t my apartment.

The walls are made of rustic wood panelling, and along the wall is a pc and a radio I know for a fact I don’t own. There’s no sign of my dirt-cheap laptop, or any of my clothes laying about. In fact- I don’t see a closet at all…

There’s a small crackling sound coming from the radio, its volume turned low enough that I can’t make out what’s being played on it. I approach it and twist some of the dials experimentally.



Uhh… What’s a Pokemon? The channel however switches to commercial and I decide to brush it off. I need to figure out where I am.

There’s… conveniently a map hanging on the wall by the stair leading down.



I-. I don’t know where any of this is. None of the geography looks familiar and the names of the towns even less so. WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON?!

I take the steps down two at a time, landing harshly on the floor below. It’s only then that I realize there was a conversation going on in the room, but the two figures turn towards me as I stop like a deer in headlights. One of the two people is my mom.



“Oh! Phoenix! Good morning, dear!” She says, a bright smile on her face.

I can’t bring myself to answer. I can only stare.

“Phoenix? Are you feeling okay?”

“...What’s going on?” I say, the words drawn out and thoroughly confused. I feel my brain give up on its sorry attempt to process what was happening.

“Oh! Mrs.Saba and I are just having some coffee together. Come here, have some breakfast! Don’t mind us two mothers talking.”

I don’t walk towards the table. The cheerful, inviting voice was not my mother’s. It sounded like her, sure, but the tone wasn’t one I’d ever heard her use.

But also- it’s been two years since I'd last seen her.

 
Last edited:

tentacat

evil little rat
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
54
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
90
Location
right behind you
Nature
Impish
Pronouns
they/them
Pokémon Type
Dark
Pokédex Entry
The cat-cephalopod Pokemon. When threatened, it will sucker punch its attacker with all 8 of its tentacles.
aw hell yeah, im so excited to see your run up! i can tell phoenix is gonna be a fun protagonist to follow. cant wait to see where this goes :D
 

Jimcloud

Johto League Champion
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
3
Caught
May 13, 2019
Messages
2,323
Pronouns
they/he/she
God, this is a real strong opening. Good hook, lots of little character bits, some mysteries that leave us hanging. Phoenix is already having a real bad time of it, I see. Good luck you poor little trooper you.
 

Glace

>:3c
Artist
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
49
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
213
Location
Deluxe Sinnoh Meme Zone
Nature
Rash
Pronouns
They/Them
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Ice
Oh I cant wait for phoenix to be so confused by everything, he is going to be very interesting to watch
 

TinyCurlyFry

Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Artist
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
55
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
63
Nature
Timid
Pronouns
She/her, but they/them is also fine
Pokémon Type
Ground, Ice
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #5
Part 2 is here! Will Phoenix manage to make it out New Bark alive?
*shakes magic 8 ball.
Outlook not so good.
Someone please help this absolute disaster.

I keep glancing between the plate of pancakes before me and the person- who’s most definitely not my mom- sitting beside me. She catches me looking once, but only offers a smile in return. She resumes conversation with the other woman in the room, but somehow I can’t bring myself to focus enough to retain what is said between them.

That is until ‘mom’ perks up suddenly.

“Oh! I nearly forgot! Phoenix, your Pokegear is back from the repair shop! Repaired just in time!”

I pause from sliding a syrup-soaked piece of fruit around my plate, “Uhhh… My ‘Pokegear’?”

“Yes!” She reaches into the bag at her feet and pulls something out, “Here you go!”

I instinctively hold out a hand as she places a long, bulky device in my hand. I squint at the strange device, poking at it with the thumb holding it, “But....What is it?”

“Your Pokegear.”

“Which is…?”



“That doesn't… Okay. Yeah, sure.”

I resume poking at the… Pokegear... resigned to figuring it out via good old-fashioned hands-on learning. For the most part it seems to be some sort of weird flip phone… but... with a built-in CD player? Except, it doesn’t have any disks in it, nor does it have anything music-related on its screen. CD’s that aren’t for music maybe? I do some more poking around.

“Phoenix, dear, do eat before the pancakes get too cold.” ‘Definitely Not My Mom’ says.

I turn my attention towards said pancakes, which have by now darkened in color from being thoroughly saturated with syrup. They’d been cut into with a fork, but otherwise untouched.

I frown.

“Ah, that’s uhhh... okay. I’m not really that hungry this morning.”

….

I remember what mornings were like; Opening mostly empty cabinets to try to scrounge up what I could for breakfast. There was hardly ever anything in the fridge, sometimes a new carton of milk on a good day, but most other things were takeaway leftovers. I would throw away anything that started stinking up the place too badly.

This house smells slightly of lavender.

I look down at the pancakes, glistening with syrup and stacked within a nest of fruit.

The typical spread was a slice of toast, a granola bar, and glass of water from the tap.

She was never there for breakfast. Usually it’d be work. Other days she was just… elsewhere.

A hand brushes across my back and I stiffen at the unexpected touch. “Are you sure you’re feeling alright, Phoenix? You really shouldn’t skip breakfast before the start of such an important day.”



I jump to the other edge of my seat, away from the hand. I look from the hand, which had lifted away in surprise, and back to her face. Concerned eyes look back at me. I glare back, “... What? What’s so important about today?”

Her brow furrows in confusion, “Why, today’s the day you set out per Professor Elm’s request. You’ll be starting an adventure with your very own Pokemon!”

Again with that fucking word! I jump from my chair, which scrapes loudly against the wooden floor. “No, Stop! SERIOUSLY, What the hell’s a ‘Pokemon’?! Also! I don’t know a ‘Professor Elm’. What the HELL’S GOING ON HERE?! WHO ARE YOU?”

She looks at me, thoroughly worried, “Phoenix, what’s wrong?!”

My eyes dart across the room, looking for something but I’m... not sure what exactly I’m trying to find. Cameras maybe? Yeah, that was probably it. This was all starting to feel like a very sick joke.

“Oh dear, are you running a fever maybe?”

“NO! I’M fine! YOU’RE the one who’s wrong!”

“Wrong?”

“WRONG!” I wave my hands vaguely at our surroundings, “All of this is wrong!”

“I don’t know what a ‘Pokemon’ is, I don’t know who Professor Elm is, and,” I gesture to the other woman at the table “I DON’T KNOW WHO YOU ARE!”

“Hello, Phoenix! I’m visiting!”

I blink, caught off guard by the absolutely unorthodox nature of the statement.

“I-”

“Phoenix, have you heard? My daughter is adamant about becoming Professor Elm’s assistant.”

I merely stare.

“She really loves Pokemon!”

The mental barrier keeping me silent shatters, “ARE YOU FUCKING POSSESSED?!” I yell.

“Hello, Phoenix! I’m visiting!”



Oh fuck no. I turn heel and head for the door. “Nope.”

The woman claiming to be my mom calls after me, “Phoenix?”

I very pointedly don’t look back as I open and slam the door behind me. I let out a noise that’s some mix of a groan and a yell as I press my back against the door.

I open my eyes, squinting in the sudden sunlight.

….A desperate part of me wished the outside would have something, anything, familiar to me, but even the ground beneath my feet was a dirt path instead of grimy concrete. There’s no sounds of angry drivers blaring on their horns, or cooing of persistent pigeons waiting for one of the crowd to drop something. In fact, there is no crowd. What there is is a lot of green; grass, trees, the roofs of every single building. I’d be hard pressed to find somewhere less like my home city.

The only thing this realization does is fuel the mixture of anger and panic churning in my stomach.

I start walking. No destination in mind, no clue where the fuck I am (despite having a map), and no patience for any of the bullshit going on.

A rich, jolly voice calls out as I storm by,



I stop in my tracks, and spin on my heels towards the man, “How do you know my name?” I demand.

He stumbles, a bit confused, but remains smiling, “You've been my neighbor for like 13 years, Phoenix. You and your mom.”

“No. I. Haven’t.” I practically snarl in reply.

There’s a pause.

He eventually replies, “Professor Elm was looking for you. I hear he discovered some new Pokemon!”

I narrow my eyes, “Alright. This is officially enough.” I scan the area around me, this time definitely looking for hidden cameras, “Okay!! I’m thoroughly spooked by this DEFINITELY ILLEGAL prank, so congratulations on being assholes!! You got me! You can bring the cameras out now!”

There’s no answer. The only movement to be seen is the wind on the trees. I look back at the man in front of me. He smiles, “Pikachu is an evolved Pokemon. I was amazed by Professor Elm’s findings. He’s so famous for his research on Pokemon evolution.”

I immediately back off. Okay, new plan. The sooner I’m out of this town, the better.

After a few minutes of blindly walking forward, I realize the dirt road I’m walking on leads towards a forest. I sigh, an ominous forest is certainly not my preferred choice, but at this point anywhere is better than here. I pick up speed towards the line of trees.

Just as I’m about to cross the threshold of trees, a hand grabs my arm and yanks me backwards. The air catches in my throat in panic and I pull against the figure as hard as I can. However, the hand releases me just as quickly, and without the resistance I’m sent backwards, tripping over my own feet, ass crashing painfully to the ground.

A girl stands unfazed before me, offering the same blank smile. She giggles, “Phoenix…”



I scramble to my feet, “GET AWAY FROM ME!”

Okay. Forest bad. The forest was out of the question. Going toward the forest angers them, apparently. Cool, Cool. Good to know….

Fuck, where else is there to go?!


I don’t break my gaze from the woman as I race back towards the center of town, making sure she doesn't follow or do anything else. I start heading towards the opposite end of the town, though I wonder if it’ll just be a repeat of this incident.

My spine grows cold as I catch sight of a guy, leaning against one of the buildings. He looks about my age, hair that was clearly originally dark dyed blonde and cut shorter on the sides. The longer length on top is brushed back and to the side.

Maybe I can still make it past him. He can’t catch me by surprise like the girl had. If I just… give him a wide enough berth I can dart past him.

A few more steps closer and he looks towards me, making eye contact. I swallow hard. Oh yeah, I think, he’s definitely waiting to grab me.

I can do this. I can make it past him. I give a quick glance at the rest of the street, making sure no one was secretly waiting to get the drop on me. Reassured that there's only two of us in the immediate area, I return my full focus onto him.

He raises a confused, if somewhat curious, brow.

I sidestep to widen the distance between us on the path.

This seems to amuse him more, “You, uhh… You good?”

“NO! I’m absolutely NOT ‘GOOD’!”

“Okay… Well in that case, maybe I can help you?”

“NOPE! NOT. A STEP. CLOSER!” I hold out my Pokegear in front of me, threateningly. “WHAT’S MY NAME?!”

He looks between the outstretched device and me, “Dude, I have no idea. I’ve never seen you before in my life.”

I drop the Pokegear in favor of running both hands through my hair in relief, “Oh thank GOD!”

“Hey, listen-” I step closer to this NORMAL HUMAN BEING, “You’ve got to get me out of here! Not to get all superstitious or whatever, but I SWEAR everyone in this town is possessed.”

“Uh- huhh.” The brow raises again.

“NO, believe me, I know how crazy I sound, but I MEAN IT. There’s something not right with the people here! Where even is ‘Here’?!”

“New Bark Town.” He says matter-of-factly.

I roll my eyes, “Yeah, I mean, I saw that on the map, but where IS New Bark- AND DON’T SAY ‘IN JOHTO’! I GOT THAT MUCH TOO.”

He gives me a weird look, “I don’t know what else you want me to tell you. That’s where you are, pal.”

I slump to the ground, “God, I’m never getting out of here.” I say, words muffled into my hands.

The guy scoffs, “Hey come on. Things could be worse.”

My head snaps back up, eyes wide, “WHAT THE FUCK?! Don’t say that!”

He raises his hands defensively, “Okay, okay, fine. But seriously, chill.”

I chuckle, “At this point that’s asking the impossible.”

He lets out a long, slow breath. “Listen,” He says, sounding a tad annoyed, “I don’t know where you’re from, but getting out of New Bark is easy. Like, ridiculously easy.”

“I was stopped before I could step out of town.” I tell him.

“...Did you not have your Pokemon out?”

I rub my temples, staring forward in disbelief. “I don’t know what a Pokemon IS!”

“I- Okay, well, that’s the first thing we gotta fix. Here, get up.” He offers a hand, “I’ll bring you to Professor Elm’s lab.”

I look at him skeptically, “Ahh... are you sure...? That’s where all the psychos here want me to go.”

His gaze no longer seems amused as he continues to hold out the hand, “Yes. I’m sure. Also,



"-The folks here won’t let you leave because leaving without a pokemon is practically suicidal. Now come on.”

I take a deep breath and take his hand, “Okay.”

I make sure to collect the Pokegear from the ground once I’m up before turning back towards him. I smile a bit awkwardly, “So… I’m uhh-- Phoenix by the way.”

He rolls his eyes, but smiles back, “Louis.”

Also, memes from Mirror World Chat:

 

Glace

>:3c
Artist
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
49
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
213
Location
Deluxe Sinnoh Meme Zone
Nature
Rash
Pronouns
They/Them
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Ice
Oh this is so fucking good tiny, I love how absolutely out of his mind Phoenix is and then he runs into Louis while still absolutely freaking out. You just can't buy this type of hilarity (thanks enigma)

also JORTS JORTS JORTS JORTS JORTS JORTS JORTS :doyouevenlift:
 

Second

A Yu-Gi-Oh! Protagonist but in Real Life
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
206
Caught
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
597
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.
Today on Mirror World: Phoenix has a total meltdown!

Honestly, assuming the NPCs are possessed is a reasonable response, but Phoenix is gonna have to get used to way worse here... Thank god Louis takes this man in stride
 

Trollkitten

Kitten of Lore
Artist
Writer
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
208
Caught
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
1,589
Location
Gatto Region
Nature
Quirky
Pronouns
She/her, Aetherai Lorekeeper
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Clever
Pokédex Entry
Autistic writer who starts more things than she finishes. Hyper asexual Twitch Plays Pokemon lorewriter. Rather be a happy shill than an angry critic.
I'm glad Phoenix has found someone to help him. If I was in his position, I'd probably freak out even worse.
 

Jimcloud

Johto League Champion
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
3
Caught
May 13, 2019
Messages
2,323
Pronouns
they/he/she
Holy fucking shit I love Phoenix so much. He is doing his god diddly damned best here, and considering this situation is so very, very far from the situations he is pre-equipped to handle, I think he's doing...

well okay i cant lie to you fry he's doing real shit at coping right now. You probably know that.

Particularly a fan of the way you just have that god DAMN NPC in the house recite their lines apropos of nothing at just the right time to send Phoenix past the breaking point.

oh, also: i wrote a thing. :D

I'm behind schedule.

My screen is starting to knit together into one single unending mass of text, I can barely focus, I'm on my third coffee of the day, and I'm still behind schedule. This is downright unacceptable. I'm working harder, but my work is all sloppy. There has to be a reason-

I sneeze, again, and blowing my nose quickly turns into a hacking fit. This sure isn't helping my focus any. But it'll be fine. I'll just put in a few extra hours later, and I'll be able to keep up with schedule. No worries.

I start, suddenly, when my boss shouts from behind me. "Hey Phoenix! how's it goin'?"

I take a moment to breathe before answering him. I've never been real great with scares like that.

"It's goin'," I say, trying not to sound as dead as I feel. It does not work. It decidedly does not work. I want to crawl into a hole.

He looks down at me, one eyebrow raised. A bit of concern leaks into his features. "You doing alright over here?"

I raise my hand up in a little bit of a casual salute, and in the process almost knock over a bottle that had been sitting on my desk. I hastily adjust the orange bottle so it's sitting squarely on the desk, but it doesn't stop my boss from noticing what it is. A container of Dayquil. Just my luck.

"Phoenix…" The boss man's voice gets a bit lower. "Are you coming into work sick? Again?"

"It's fine, it's fine!" I laugh nervously, making shooing motions. "It's not that bad. Don't worry about it."

He slowly shakes his head. "Listen, Phoenix. You're one of my hardest workers. There's a reason I trust you with the jobs I do. But that trust isn't going to mean anything if you run yourself into the ground. I can't pay wages for skeletons, you know!" He laughs, but it seems a little bit forced.

"It's not like that!"

"Phoenix." He stares me down. "Go home. Get some rest. Come back tomorrow."

I stare back at him.

I… can't. I really, really can't. I need the overtime this week. If I don't get it, I can't pay the electric bill. The price for the extra medicine I bought alone was exorbitant. I can't afford to mess up another time.

"I'll be fine! I'm just a little bit under the weather, that's all!" I lie. And not, like, a little lie. I feel like absolute garbage, premium Grade-A shit. The organic shit. Free range shit.

He stares at me for another few long, arduous moments before finally breaking eye contact. He throws his hands in the air. "Okay, Phoenix, if you're sure, but don't forget you have sick days and vacation days still to spend. If you need time to recover, you can just say the word. We can make time."

Maybe you can make time, I sigh as I turn my head back to my screen.

You can do a lot of things with time. You can go to the park… a day trip to the beach… see a movie, maybe. Wow, it's been a long time since I did that. You could go window shopping, visit the library, even just take a day to yourself and just relax.

But you can't make money. You can't keep yourself afloat.

I see everyone else around me treading water, but I can't do that. I'm fighting tooth and nail just to keep my head above the waves.

And I can't let myself drown. If not for me, then for her.

But God, I really hope she doesn't end up sick, too. I… don't know what I'd do if she did.
 

TinyCurlyFry

Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Artist
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
55
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
63
Nature
Timid
Pronouns
She/her, but they/them is also fine
Pokémon Type
Ground, Ice
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #10
Replies~:

@Glace - Thanks Enigma...! Phoenix is having a good ol' time haha! (Also HELL YEAH- JORTS! JORTS! JORTS!)

@Second - Local Man Screams in the void! More at 10!! Louis is legally obligated to deal with Phoenix's bullshit lmao, but he can bring himself to be patient with this panicked boy! He's certainly going to have a fun time trying to teach Phoenix how to be a trainer haha.

@Trollkitten - It's a valid situation to be so freaked out! Not everyone can handle the world as you know it drastically changing suddenly!

@Jimcloud -JIMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!! THAT'S MY FUCKING BOY!! I LOVE THIS PIECE SO MUCH! I'm glad people can see what Phoenix is like when not pitted in this funky weird world ;;;;; He works so hard!! ALSO YEAH, He's not... exactly putting in an attempt to cope gjskfjg
 

TinyCurlyFry

Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Artist
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
55
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
63
Nature
Timid
Pronouns
She/her, but they/them is also fine
Pokémon Type
Ground, Ice
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #11
Part 3 is here!


I keep a curious, careful watch on Louis as we walked through the town. “So.. Louis?”

He looks over his shoulder, “Yeah?”

“You’re… from here?”

He shakes his head, “Oh, nah. I haven’t been here long. ‘S been about two days.”

“And you’re just.... Cool with how things are here? No weird vibes from this place?”

“Nope.”

I glare, trying to figure out whether he really meant that, or is just being an asshole, “None at all?”

“None at all.” He repeats.

“Where are you from?”

He casts a look my way, “I don’t see how telling would help if you don’t know where anywhere is. I grew up... pretty far away from here.”

“Well if it’s far, maybe I will recognize it.”

He shrugs, “Alright, fair. I’m from Avernus.” He holds eye contact, “Familiar at all?”

I sigh, defeated. “No..”

“Kind of figured as much. Anyways, this is it.” He gestures up a series of steps to a large building.

This “Professor Elm”’s lab looks like it was probably the largest building in the town. It was also the closest to a building he may expect to see back home, all metal and glass, though still not nearly as tall. Louis shoves one of the heavy double doors open, gesturing me in. The whole thing still feels suspicious to me.

“You’re sure about this? Coming here? You can’t just… explain to me what Pokemon are? So that I don’t have to enter random research labs? Because this kind of screams ‘you’re about to be murdered’ to me. Just putting it out there.”

Louis snorts “Phoenix, I’m positive. Also.. I feel it’s easier to just show you what Pokemon are than to explain with words. But I promise you, you’re not going to be murdered in the lab.”

I scowl, “I don’t like that wording.”

He rolls his eyes, “Just get in here already.”

Louis leads the way further and further into the building, passing bookshelves, tables with dozens of papers and books spread across them, and what could be assumed were the scientists employed here standing over them. They each, one by one, look up as the two of us walk by, offering wide smiles. I step a little closer in line behind Louis. “I still swear there’s something off about them.” I whisper.

He turns to look at some of the other people, and then looks back at me, “They’re literally just being friendly, Phoenix.”

He stops towards the back of the large space, where a man sits typing away at a computer. “Phoenix, this is Professor Elm.”

The man he gestures to perks up and pulls himself away from the screen.



I laugh nervously, “Yeah! So I’ve been told! And, honestly? Can I just... preemptively decline? Like, is that a choice I have here?”

Elm frowns, "But... Please, I need your help!"

Louis groans, “Phoenix.”

“Literally can’t understand why it’s gotta be me! I’m sure there are people far more qualified for…. Whatever this is.”

"But... Please, I need your help!"

I whip back to look at Louis, gesturing wildly at the broken record man. “SEE?! THAT! I DON’T TRUST THAT SHIT! LOUIS? THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT!”

Louis laughs, “The man really needs your help, Phoenix.”

“I- How can you laugh?! THIS ISN’T HOW NORMAL PEOPLE TALK!”

I go slack jawed as Louis merely shrugs in response.

SERIOUSLY?! YOU’RE JUST OKAY WITH THIS?”

“So they repeat what they say a few times, why get so worked about it? I realize making a big deal out of nothing is... kind of your thing-” I scowl “-but it’s really not that big of a deal.”

“IT’S. NOT. NORMAL, LOUIS!” I hiss.

He caves, “Alright. It’s not normal. And?”

“AND I DON’T TRUST IT! I don’t want any part of… whatever this is!”

Louis tilts his head to the side, expression blank, “Hmm. Can’t help you there, pal. Elm, could you explain what this task is that you need help with?”

Elm smiles, “I have an acquaintance called Mr. Pokémon. He keeps finding weird things and raving about his discoveries. Anyway, I just got an email from him saying that this time it's real. It is intriguing, but we're busy with our Pokémon research. So! Could you look into it for us? Also, I'd like you to raise one of these Pokemon I’ve recently caught. Take it with you to Mr.Pokemon’s house. ”

“WHAT. IS. A-” I stop, “Wait....Raise?”

He nods, “I want you to raise one of the Pokémon contained in these Balls. You'll be that Pokémon's first partner, Phoenix!”

Elm gestures to a table on my other side, where three red and white balls rested on three stands. I struggle to understand what exactly it was he was saying. There’s something. Living??? In those small, baseball sized balls?

I look at Louis, “Are they like… Bugs?”

Louis hums, “Well some of them are, but for the most part, no.”

I pause.

“Is it a fucking virtual pet, then?”

“No,”

Elm walks to the side of the table, gesturing towards the three balls.



From the table I pick up one of said balls. There’s no screen on the sphere, no clear panel to look into either. Nothing embedded into the surface save for a single button. I narrow my eyes, and turn back to Elm and Louis. One standing much more patiently than the other.

“I’m not pressing the button.” I state.

Louis makes a frustrated noise “Phoenix. PLEASE. Just press fucking the button.”

“What does pressing the button do?!”

“It literally just opens it.”

“And what’s inside it?”

He makes a louder noise of frustration, “A Pokemon.”

I stare back at him, “I’m not going to release something I have no knowledge on.”

He sighs, and steps from Elm’s side up to the table, “Okay! OKAY. Look. I’m taking one too. Will it make you feel better if we both open them?”

I draw my mouth into a tight line, unsure.

“Hold it facing away from you. Press the button and let it open in your hand. You could throw it after pressing it too, if you so choose.” He demonstrates holding it out as he speaks.

Throwing it away from where I was standing sounded… like a better option, being that I had no idea what it was going to do when the button was pressed.

Louis, however, doesn’t wait for me to say anything before he presses the button on the ball in his hand. A bright red light erupts from the ball and fills the space in front of us. I throw myself backwards, right into the table. “AHH! SHIT! WHAT-”

The light dissipates and instead a small… thing, sits on the floor. It’s like… a large, very unnaturally red rabbit. A light was flickering from its tai- the tail was on fire. WHY WAS THE TAIL ON FIRE?! The rabbit is sitting very much unfazed by the fact it was on fire, looking up at us curiously. I press my back against the table, “IT’S ON FIRE. WHY IS IT ON FIRE?! WHAT IS IT??! ALSO!! That’s MUCH BIGGER than the ball. It could NOT have fit in the ball!”

The only indication that Louis is listening at all is the barely contained laugh. He kneels down closer to the burning rabbit’s level, “Huh.” He muses, giving the rabbit an experimental stroke by its ears.

The things chirps and leans into the touch, ears twitching rapidly as the hand grazes over them. Louis smiles, looking at me from the corner of his eye, “See? It’s fine. Cute even.”

“That thing’s not real.” I say, still keeping my distance away from the somehow still-very-much-on-fire bunny.

Louis turns his head fully towards me, amused disbelief plastered on his face, “You can’t be serious.”

I gesture towards it, at a loss, “LOOK AT IT! THAT THING PHYSICALLY CAN’T EXIST! IT’S ON FIRE!! HOW IS IT NOT BURNING TO DEATH?”

Louis’ stunned smile grows, “Oh my god.”

He rocks back on his feet and shifts to the side. He gestures to the impossible creature, “Alright, come on. Pet it.”

I blink in bewilderment, “What? NO.”

“Just touch the bunny, Phoenix.”

“No! IT’S ON FIRE.”

“But if it’s not real, your hand will just go right through it. What you can’t touch can’t hurt you.” He says with a grin.

I squint at him. The grin stays on his face.

“Okay, fine.” I give.

I lower myself next to Louis, frowning at the crimson bunny. I *very* tentatively brush the fur at the top of its head back. It’s nose twitches at me.

“See? Real, and not hurting you.”

I scrunch my nose, “Pretty sure I’m taking mental damage just looking at it.”

“Now, that’s just rude.” Louis says, lifting the Pokemon into his hands.

He nods to the ball in my other hand, “Your turn.”

“God.”

“You can’t leave it in the ball, Phoenix. Especially if you want to leave town. Better to find out now what it is than when you suddenly find yourself in need of its help.”

My arm feels like ice as I reluctantly hold it out in front of me, making sure to toss it some distance away as soon as the button is pressed.

It’s bigger than the bunny.

What it looks like is a velociraptor from hell. All black leather, save for its slightly lighter underbelly. It turns its head and stares at me over its shoulder with slitted red eyes. A long tail sweeps across the floor around it, what looks like smoke but thicker and darker pluming from the end of it.

I let out an exasperated groan, “Oh noo. What is THAT?! It’s a hell lizard!”

Louis snickers.

I throw my hands up, “Why do you get a bunny, and I get one that looks demonic?!”

Louis cracks up more, needing to take a second before he’s able to catch enough breath to speak, “Aww, now come on. Look at it this way- it’ll probably be better at fighting off the wild Pokemon outside of town.”

“That’s- That’s a terrifying thing to say! We have to FIGHT OTHER THINGS LIKE THESE?!”

“What did you think I meant by, ‘it’s suicidal to go without a Pokemon of your own’?”

I cover my face with my hands, “What the fuck is this hell place?!”

I watch as Louis presses the ball to the bunny in his arms, and the bunny disappears with the same bright light.

“God, what the fuck.” I whisper under my breath.

He gives a little wave with the ball in hand, “Oh yeah, touching it to the button again recalls the Pokemon.”

I’m about to respond when the larger Pokemon takes a few steps closer to me. I take an instinctive step back. It stops.

Louis sighs, “It’s not going to hurt you.”

“How can you be so sure?!”

“It wouldn’t be a starter Pokemon then.”

I don’t retake the step forward.

“Phoenix... Give it a pet.”

I gesture at it with both hands, “It’s not a bunny! Maybe it doesn’t even ‘like’ to be petted!”

“Just do it.”

I hold out an arm stiffly, taking a very slow, small step closer to the Pokemon. It stays perfectly still. I take a breath, “Okay...”

I close the distance the rest of the way, placing my hand on its leathery head. It moves its snout, nuzzling against the palm of my hand.

Louis gives me a pointed look.

“Okay, okay. Fine, my hand is still intact. You were right.”

Elm pipes up, “I think that's a great Pokémon, too! Would you like to give her a name?”

I’d honestly forgotten he was there.

Louis, who’d turned to look at Elm immediately whips his head back to Phoenix. “Oh, you gotta.” He says.

I make a face, but Louis looks at me expectantly. I sigh, “How would I know what to name a nightmare lizard? Actually, you know what? There. Her name can be Nightmare. Because she’s a thing of actual nightmares.”

Louis laughs and reaches down to cup Nightmare’s face, “Nightmare, I’m so sorry your trainer’s so mean. You’re a lovely hell-spawn.”

“Now hold on a second, I am not! I pet her didn't I?! IT’S JUST THE TRUTH!”

Louis straightens up and clears his throat, “Well, in any case. Now that you’ve gotten a Pokemon, I should show you how to battle. You’re going to need to know how to, in order to get to Mr.Pokemon’s house.”



“You know, maybe I’ll just stay in the town. Avoid getting attacked by terrifying beasts.”

“You could.” Louis mused. “Though I doubt you’d ever find a way to get home, staying here.”

I sigh. He was right, again.

“Just a practice battle.” Louis says, “To get you used it.”

“Not gonna get used to it” I interject.

“IN ANYCASE, Now that Nightmare is officially yours, your Pokegear should have her information logged. It should have what she can do listed there.”



He reopens his ball, summoning the rabbit between us.

“Alright. So, the things you see listed are what they’re capable of doing. The more fights they do, the more they learn, and the list will update accordingly. For example, Nidoran, use faint attack.”



I blink and the rabbit has disappeared. A dark split appears at Nightmare’s immediate right and the ‘Nidoran’ is suddenly there, and phases through Nightmare with bullet speed. Nightmare makes a pained noise and recoils. She draws herself lower to the floor with a snarl, red eyes locked onto the rabbit.

I lean back in surprise and fear, “UHHH! WHAT THE FUCK WAS THAT!?”

“Faint attack.”

“YEAH COOL! THANKS FOR ALL THE HELPFUL EXPLANATIONS! That really clears it up.”

“You’re very welcome. Your turn, by the way.”

I navigate through the device, looking for the list Louis mentioned, “So uhh, Nightmare? Please tell me you don't do anything like that. Because that was A LOT.”

Nightmare only snorts in response, staring at the Nidoran intently but awaiting a command.

“Okay. uhhh- Use ‘Crunch’?”



“Oh, thank god. That's just like.. a bite. That's a normal thing for an animal to do.”

Louis nods, “Then it just repeats.”

He looks down at his own Pokegear. “Hmm..”



"If your Pokémon is hurt, you should heal it with this machine. Feel free to use it anytime.” Elm says from the sidelines, pointing behind him at a large machine in the corner.

“Will do.” Louis says idly, and recalls his Pokemon once more. “Might as well heal Nightmare too, she should have all her health back before we head out into the wild.”

“Oh, uhh- sure.” I walk over and lift the ball to Nightmare, who walks forward to meet it.

...How the fuck do they fit in there??

Louis holds out his hand and takes Nightmare’s ball. He places them into two of the six divets in the machine. The thing thrums and flashes for a few seconds before playing a little diddy.

He picks the two balls back up and goes to pass Nightmare’s ball back towards me.



“I-- There’s no way that did anything.”

“Sure it did. It makes them very small, which makes their injuries able to be healed extremely rapidly.”

I stop, feeling the gears grinding to a halt in my head, “I-wait. Is that for real how it works?”

He laughs, “Absolutely not, I'm just fucking with you.”

There’s a certain limit for bullshit where one suddenly loses the ability to feel livid. I very much feel at that limit. “Fuck off.”

“Well, it is about time we head out.” Louis states, he turns to Professor Elm. “Thanks for the Pokemon, Elm. You've been a great conversationalist!”

I glare DAGGERS at Louis, “You know, I’m starting to think I’d rather take my chances and head through the wild ALONE.”

Louis grins, “Oh I wouldn’t be so quick to say that.”


Also!! New Art!


 

Glace

>:3c
Artist
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
49
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
213
Location
Deluxe Sinnoh Meme Zone
Nature
Rash
Pronouns
They/Them
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Ice
Oh c'mon Phoenix, if someone really wanted to murder you, they wouldn't just tell you that you weren't gonna get murdered! You always want the element of surprise in that department. Also, I really love the interpretation of nidoran as a bunny, it's super cute ❤
 

Trollkitten

Kitten of Lore
Artist
Writer
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
208
Caught
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
1,589
Location
Gatto Region
Nature
Quirky
Pronouns
She/her, Aetherai Lorekeeper
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Clever
Pokédex Entry
Autistic writer who starts more things than she finishes. Hyper asexual Twitch Plays Pokemon lorewriter. Rather be a happy shill than an angry critic.
Louis snorts “Phoenix, I’m positive. Also.. I feel it’s easier to just show you what Pokemon are than to explain with words. But I promise you, you’re not going to be murdered in the lab.”

I scowl, “I don’t like that wording.”
I feel ya.
There’s a certain limit for bullshit where one suddenly loses the ability to feel livid. I very much feel at that limit.
Been there.
Excellent depiction! A beast of nightmares indeed...
 

Tookie

The Immoral Bard
Writer
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
80
Caught
Jun 16, 2019
Messages
1,077
Location
Southern England
Nature
Lax
Pronouns
He/Him
Pokémon Type
Poison, Psychic
Pokédex Entry
This user does not exist. All impressions to the contrary are propaganda pieces and not to be trusted.
i'm with louis on this one, nightmare is an adorable looking little hellspawn
 

mondograss

Bard of Life
Writer
Team Omega
Pokédex No.
680
Caught
Aug 15, 2019
Messages
510
Nature
Naive
Pokémon Type
Dark, Normal
Pokédex Entry
This Pokemon is infamously irritable, but it comes down from its rage quickly. It is quite loyal to kind, patient Trainers.
This is great so far! Making Dark type Charmander smoky is a clever explanation of the type. Not much makes sense to poor Phoenix right now... and that's awesome! I see now why so many people are taking the "protag from a world without Pokemon" angle. The pure nonsense of Pokemon as a concept adds nicely to the chaos of Mirror World.
 

Jimcloud

Johto League Champion
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
3
Caught
May 13, 2019
Messages
2,323
Pronouns
they/he/she
God i FUCKING love the GODDAMN back and forth between Phoenix and Louis. For real I am living for this shit, oh my g od .

ALSO REALLY LOVING HOW LOUIS ALL BUT ADMITS HES FROM FUCKING HELL, too bad phoenix isnt studied on this bullshit. thats what u get for being a stem major phoenix

i could go into detail about everything i liked in this update but i would, basically be quoting every other god damned part, this is just, a really standout part, louis and phoenix's dynamic makes it for real. I'm so, so excited to see what's coming for them with the next update. Thank you for this, I'm crying.
 

TinyCurlyFry

Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Artist
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
55
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
63
Nature
Timid
Pronouns
She/her, but they/them is also fine
Pokémon Type
Ground, Ice
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #17
First Route Fun Times~

“ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?!” I yell, throwing my hands in a wide broad gesture in front of me. Because it was A LOT. LIKE 20FT OF A LOT.

I yelp as Louis yanks my hood, and behind the tree beside us. “Are you fucking kidding me?!” I repeat, but in a quieter hiss.

“Okay, first off. Saying it again quieter doesn’t mean it didn’t absolutely hear you screech the first time.” Louis says. “Also, that’s called a Lugia. Unfortunately for you, they’re all over this route. Call Nightmare out.”

“Nightmare can’t fight that thing! It’s like… 5 times her size!”

“Size doesn’t mean as much as you’d think.”

“What do you MEAN it doesn’t matter?! OF COURSE IT MATTERS!”

The absolute worst bird scream I’ve ever heard comes from behind us.

“You wanna take your chances running past it? Go on, challenge it to a race instead, Phoenix.”

I bang the back of my head to the trunk of the tree, “I’m gonna die here.” I practically sing.

“Phoenix, just trust me on this.”

I laugh hysterically, “WHY WOULD I TRUST YOU ON THIS?!”

“Because otherwise I’m just gonna abandon your sorry ass out here.”

I squeeze my eyes shut “GODDDD. I HATE YOU SO MUCH.”

He snorts, “Fair. Now do it.”



I reach into the bag I’d gotten from the first house I’d woken up in and pulled out Nightmare’s ball. “Now who’s being cruel to her?” I say, glaring at Louis as I press the button.

“Still you. You should have more trust in her abilities.”

“Nightmare, Louis is saying you gotta fight this thing.” I say, jabbing my thumb to the other side of the tree.

Nightmare follows the hand and immediately locks onto the Kaijuu bird. She lets out a huff, releasing a thick black smoke from her flared nostrils.

She walks forward in confident steps. I shoot one last glare at Louis, “I swear if you get my hell lizard killed-”

“Won’t be my fault if you don’t command her. Eyes on the battle, Phoenix.”



“Right, right.” I scramble for the pokegear in my pocket, “Nightmare use- uhhh- Slash?”

Nightmare nods and braces herself as the Lugia lets out another ear-piercing cry and pushes off the tree it was perched on top of.

The whole air thrums as if dives down, and a blinding stream of color shifting flame erupts from its mouth. Louis grabs my shoulder again and further behind the tree. As soon as the heat and light disappears I quickly rotate to peer around the tree. SOMEHOW, Nightmare doesn’t look fazed at all, racing forward towards the bird.

With a bounding leap she tears into the side of the Lugia’s face with her claws. The thing screams and lets out another blast, this time more directly at Nightmare.

“Shit! Nightmare, do it again?!?!”

She shakes her head, squeezing her eyes shut as the last of the flames lick out around her face. She snarls and jumps onto the thing’s head, digging into it again. The thing beats its wings furiously and shifts its weight back. Unable to shake the Charmander, however, it loses its balance and falls backwards onto the tree. Nightmare stands over it before she pulls herself off of it, licking her chops proudly as she trots back over to us.



I blink in disbelief, “christ.”

Louis tsks, “And you doubted her. Shame on you.”

She comes to a stop in front of me, I swear she’s smiling. “What are you?” I whisper.

Louis pats the bottom of her snout, “Good job, Nightmare.” He dotes.

She circles him, so that her tail in curled around him. Louis smiles at me, “Well, let’s keep moving. There’s more where that’s from, so you know, the faster we move the better.”

“What?! There are MORE?!?! How many could there possibly be in one area?! DO NOT EVEN THE LAWS OF OVERPOPULATION APPLY HERE?!”

“There are more than you want to think about.” He says, patting my shoulder roughly, pushing me forward, “So let’s go.”

Louis continues leading the way, Nightmare now trotting at our sides. Our eyes are kept upward, keeping a wide berth to sounds of trees cracking and rustling, as well as any sight of glistening white feathers.

That is, until a tiny chirp sounds at our feet. Our heads snap to the source of the sound, a small baby bird that looks somewhat similar to a penguin, that is… if penguins were bright pink and yellow. It flapped angrily, puffing itself up as it starts making a commotion. “Uhh- Nightmare slash… I guess?” I look to Louis for confirmation.

“Might as well.” He says, “Good practice for her.”

“It’s so small though? It feels a little uncalled for.”

“Again, size really doesn’t matter when it comes to-”

His attention is drawn back to the candy-colored penguin screaming in pain as Nightmare’s claws rake across it. A faint glow is coming from it, growing from the center of its chest. I realize that there’s also a second sound, much quieter than its cries. A hissing sound.

“SHIT! GET DOWN!



I gasp for air as my back is slammed to the ground. At first I wasn’t sure if the flash of light was really there, or just my vision flashing from the impact, but then a searing heat is racing past me, prickling my cheeks and sending needles into my hands.

I blink blankly, taking a moment to process what had just happened and to catch my breath. The bright flash, the heat-Oh god, is Nightmare okay? I shift my head to look back at where she and the other Pokemon had been.

Nightmare stands. She’s shaking her head and scratching at her face which is now a singed, gory mess. After some of the black soot has been cleared she blinks her eyes open and looks in our direction with worry. She looks a mess, but overall alright.



I stare at the spot surrounding her, completely burned away. Tendrils of smoke drifting up from where the grass had been, “THEY EXPLODE?!” I wheeze.

Louis laughs, seeming equally shocked for once, “Apparently!”

I lie my head back against the forest floor, closing my eyes. “WHY DO THEY EXPLODE?!!!”

He continues to chuckle but doesn’t offer an answer. He does move to the side, however, moving his weight off of me so I can sit up. I flinch as my hands sting as I push against them. Once sitting I lift them in front of me, examining the burns. It’s not *too* bad, somehow. About the same as grabbing a pan from the oven… except… all across the back of my hand. They’ll probably be burned for a few days.

“You alright?” Louis gives my hand a rough tap with his knuckles.

“OW! GOD, COULD YOU NOT?!”

He smirks, “I suppose.”

Nightmare walks back over and gives my face a lick, her rough tongue grating against my irritated skin. I try not to wince. I awkwardly pat her side, “Hhhh-yup, okay- heey there, Nightmare. Glad to see you’re somehow explosion-proof.

She sneezes, clearing a bit more of the wet black powder off her snout. It splatters against my lap. My face scrunches in disgust. Not that my black jeans weren’t already in rough shape.

Louis pulls one of his sleeves over his hand and wipes her muzzle, getting rid of most of what was left. With one final pat on her head, he pushes himself back onto his feet. After brushing himself off he sighs, “Welp, gotta keep moving. We’re about... halfway through, I think?”

I drop back down onto my back, letting out a loud groan, “You’ve got to be kidding me.”

Louis grins from standing over me, raising that fucking amused brow at me again, “Hey, at least you know what to expect now.”

I stare at him incredulously, “DO I?! I REALLY DON’T THINK I DO!”

He extends his hand, “You know to expect the unexpected.” He offers.

I stare at the hand for a moment, fully considering not taking it and just continuing to lie on the ground for a moment. Eventually I sigh and let him pull me back onto my feet. “That. Is not the same as knowing what to expect.”

He shrugs, “Agree to disagree.”

He gives himself one more look over. Huh. Were his clothes not singed before? I didn’t really take a look at them, distracted by the fact that penguin had just exploded and all that. I guess it wasn’t.. Impossible… I just would have thought they’d be- “‘You good?”

I startle and look up at Louis’ curious expression.

“I uhh- Yeah. You know, besides nearly being killed by literally everything we encounter. Totally fine.”

He snorts, “Well, that’s another thing to expect, now isn’t it?”

I sigh, very much not amused, “Stop.”

My thoughts drifted back. Clothes showing it or not, he… had shielded me from most of the blast. I frown,“Hey… Louis, are you okay?”

Louis’ laugh dies. “Yeah, I’m fine. It was also only like, a foot tall, Phoenix. It wasn’t big enough to do a lot of damage.” He turns around and starts walking, “Keep moving.”

Nightmare takes a few steps after him, but looks at me when I don’t immediately follow. I look down at my feet, how the only grass left was where I’d been lying. Everything else is smoldering, spots of red splattered in a good five foot radius. My frown deepens but I let it go, falling in step with Louis.

I do however catch how he rolls his shoulders a few minutes later.

Size doesn’t matter’ I think to myself. I keep it to myself.


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


“Hold up, actually” Louis says.

We’d been able to keep a decent pace after the exploding Pokemon incident. Exploding ‘Smoochum’, as my Pokegear had called it. Not a fan of the name.

I stop and follow his gaze to a tree a dozen or so yards away. Another one of those damn dragon birds sits at its top. “Let’s fight this one.”

“WHAT?! WE’RE AVOIDING THEM!! WHY ON EARTH WOULD WE DELIBERATELY PICK A FIGHT WITH ONE?!”

Because,” He says, “There’s actually one more thing I have to show you.”

He reaches into his own bag and pulls out his Pokemon's ball. “I’ll give Nightmare some extra help, though. She’s getting pretty tired.”

He brings the Nidoran out of her ball, “Alright Erinys, Faint attack.”

The Nidoran disappears in an instance and reappears directly in front of the Lugia, bulleting right into its face. It blinks back onto the ground, landing next to Nightmare.

The bird screams in rage and launches itself off the tree, into a dive towards the two Pokemon. “I can’t fucking believe we’re doing this...Nightmare, crunch!”

Nightmare launches herself into the air with her hind quarters and latches onto the Lugia’s neck, her weight pulling it down to the ground. Louis nods, “Good. Now use this.”

He hands me a pokeball.

“What? What Pokemon is this?”

“Not a Pokemon. Just the ball. You’re going to catch the Lugia.”

“What?” I repeat.

“Nightmare has it on the ground. You can catch it, and then you’ll have the Pokemon to use. Just like Nightmare."

"WHAT?! NO!!! I DON'T WANT THAT THING!!!"

Louis blinks, "What do you MEAN you don't want it?!"

I gesture at the giant bird, fighting against Nightmare’s hold on it. “THERE’S NO WAY I CAN CONTROL THAT THING! Also look at the SIZE of it! THE POKEBALL ISN’T EVEN THE SIZE OF IT’S TALON!!”



Louis swears under his breath, “Erinys, blind it with sunny day for now!”

He looks back at me, “Look, these things are GOD BIRDS, you want that kind of power on your team.”

I gape at him, “It’s a WHAT?!”

“In some places, these things are considered gods.”

I throw my hands in the air, “THAT’S ALL THE MORE REASON WHY I SHOULD NOT HAVE ONE! THAT’S ASKING TO BE KILLED!!”

He shoves it into my hand, “Oh my god, Phoenix just throw the ball!”

I very reluctantly take the ball, “I’m letting it eat you first.” I say as I chuck the so very tiny ball at the giant ass bird.

The bright red light envelopes the Lugia and it disappears from under Nightmare. “How in the fuck can it FIT IN-”



I’m cut off as a loud pop and static sounds from the pokeball and the brilliant red light returns, dumping the Lugia back out. I throw my hands towards the Lugia, staring pointedly at Louis, “SEE?! IT DOESN’T FIT!”

“That’s not how-”

I give him the bird, not the god bird, but the small one, on my hand. Still staring at him I call out to Nightmare, “Nightmare, attack it with crunch again.”

Louis gives a big sigh as Nightmare sinks her teeth into it again, this time ripping at one of its legs. The thing lets out another scream and crashes to the ground. “Fine.” He says, “You know what? You know how to catch Pokemon. I’m counting that. Lesson over, I did my job here. Do with this invaluable knowledge I've imparted upon you as you will.”

He calls back Erinys and starts heading back in the direction we’d been walking. “Now hold on, the pokeball didn’t work! What was I supposed to do!? LOUIS?!”

I whistle for Nightmare to come.

He doesn’t stop walking, “You only tried one ball. We have more.”

“IT WASN’T GOING TO FIT!”

Louis groans, “Size. Doesn’t. Matter. Phoenix. They’re magic balls!”

“THAT DOESN’T EXPLAIN HOW THEY WORK!”

Louis lifts his hands in front of him, “Yes. It literally does. Magic.”

“‘Magic’ is not a valid explanation. It’s a lack of one.”

He turns to look at me, walking backwards, “Wait. How do you think Pokemon work?”

“I don’t know?! Animals are weird. They’re like… weird genetic mutations?”

At that Louis actually stops. He just stares. “Wait you-- You’re joking.”

“WHAT PART OF THAT WOULD BE ME JOKING?!”

He looks from me to Nightmare, and back. “Weird animals.” He says.

“WELL- YEAH!”

There’s another moment of just. Staring. And then Louis erupts into laughter.

“Oh-OH MY GOD!”

I stand, arms crossed, waiting for him to finish. He doesn’t.

“I'm sorry this is just- this is just too much.You, the guy named PHOENIX, can't handle that magic animals exist."

“PHOENIX IS A NORMAL NAME!”

“Sure it is.”

“IT IS!! BUT ALSO! THAT DOESN’T MEAN ANYTHING! My name could be ‘Dragon’, that doesn’t mean they EXIST!!”

He doubles over, laughing harder. I hope it hurts.

“Phoenix! OH MY GOD! WE LITERALLY JUST BATTLED ONE!”

I sputter, “I- NO?! That’s a bird. Just because it’s 20 feet tall doesn’t make it a dragon! IT JUST MAKES IT A BIG BIRD!!”

“Phoenix. It BRE- You can’t actually think that!”

“YES! YES I DO, ACTUALLY! THEY-” He erupts into more laughter, “SHUT UP!!”

“Didn’t you just say we need to keep moving. Let’s keep moving.” I fume, pushing past him.

He continues laughing, but it’s more controlled now. I don’t hear him following, though. I turn around, waiting.

He stands, staring at me with a knowing look.

“What?!”

“You don’t know where you’re going. But, yes, by all means, lead the way, Phoenix.”

“Don’t say my name like that.”

“Hmm? Like what? I don’t know what you mean...” He replies, a shit eating grin on his face.

I narrow my eyes.

Phoenix.”

I spin back around, “The next city isn’t that far. You said so yourself. I can find my way there.”

I hear the crunching of his footsteps following. Or, at least a few. And then they stop briefly. I feel a rustle and a gust of wind behind me. I hesitate in my step, turning back around- And yelp when Louis is standing immediately behind me. He’s looking upward.

Fuck, was it another Lugia? Maybe it heard the other one die and came to find its attackers. I’m not sure how many more Nightmare can fight off. Louis glances back down at me, and smirks “What’s wrong? Did a noise scare you?”

“Literally every noise in this forest has meant a near-death encounter so far. So, YEAH.”

Louis chuckles, “Come on, fearless leader. You’re not wrong that Cherrygrove’s close.”

“God, the moment we’re finally out of this fucking den of god birds can NOT come sooner.”

I take a moment to look for where Nightmare is. She’s a little ways behind us, head raised and alert. Staring towards us with wide eyes. “Nightmare? Come on, girl.”

She makes a noise and trots to us, taking to my side opposite of Louis.

Also! Art Treat! Blonde Bastard has been drawn~


 
Last edited:

Glace

>:3c
Artist
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
49
Caught
Jun 15, 2019
Messages
213
Location
Deluxe Sinnoh Meme Zone
Nature
Rash
Pronouns
They/Them
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Ice
blonde bastard blonde bastard!!!!!!!! god i fucking love their dynamic together so much, it's so much fun
 

Tookie

The Immoral Bard
Writer
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
80
Caught
Jun 16, 2019
Messages
1,077
Location
Southern England
Nature
Lax
Pronouns
He/Him
Pokémon Type
Poison, Psychic
Pokédex Entry
This user does not exist. All impressions to the contrary are propaganda pieces and not to be trusted.
phoenix i love you dearly but you're so far in denial that even the crocodiles think it's excessive

these lads have a fantastic dynamic i'm 110% here for
 

Trollkitten

Kitten of Lore
Artist
Writer
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
208
Caught
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
1,589
Location
Gatto Region
Nature
Quirky
Pronouns
She/her, Aetherai Lorekeeper
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Clever
Pokédex Entry
Autistic writer who starts more things than she finishes. Hyper asexual Twitch Plays Pokemon lorewriter. Rather be a happy shill than an angry critic.
Exploding Smoochum. Of all things. This is one messed-up mirror world and I love it.
 

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