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Poppin' Arms ~ Dorm Lounge

Cresselia92

Ace Trainer
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
"H-Hey! That's not true," Cabot insisted. "You're a really nice Pokémon and everyone is really happy to have you on the team. People wouldn't think that if you were just some nobody, would they? Especially after organizing such a great party."

Icetales flashed a small smile. "Yes, well, I... I only wished for folks to have a pleasant time, at least for once in their lives. Some of them had it rough, so I... wished to lighten the load, if only for one day."

He purposely left aside the fact that he overexerted himself to accomplish that task, but the happiness in his comrades was well worth the sacrifice, he told to himself.

"I can't say I know what it's like for you back home, since I'm not a noble and don't have any siblings, but at least I sorta know what it's like to have your parents expect things from you that you don't want."

Icetales perked up at hearing that last sentence and leaned forward. "Oh? Care to enlighten me about that?" He waved a paw. "If... thou dost not mind that, of course. I am not forcing thee."
 

Virgil134

PMD Writer
Partners
  1. weavile
Cabot gave Icetales a small smile.

"Well, I wouldn't bring it up if I didn't wanna talk about it," he chuckled, before his smile muted a bit. "But, my parents own a box busting shop. For a while they wanted me to take over when I got older, especially my dad. I told them I didn't want it and they were never too forceful about it, yet they kept prodding me about it. Maybe they thought I'd change my mind when I got older or something... Anyway, when I signed up for the navy they really didn't take it well. We got into a big argument and I remember my dad telling me that I should have used my head and settled on another job like taking over his shop."
 

Cresselia92

Ace Trainer
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
Icetales nodded, looking at Cabot with sympathy. "Golly, I can only imagine how such a discussion must have gone. Though, um... could it be because they wanted a safe job for thee? After all, thy kin is good at... busting, I would say. However," he smiled, "nobody should be forced to follow a career based on their species or family business. I... certainly encourage to follow thine own path, especially if that is what makes thee happy."
 
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Virgil134

PMD Writer
Partners
  1. weavile
Cabot nodded back. "You're right. I know they reacted like that because they were worried about me and wanted to keep me safe, and looking back at it maybe the reason I signed up was a little bit childish..." He pawed at the back of his neck. "But, we talked about it the next day, and in the end it turned out alright and they understood that I really wanted this. That I didn't just want to stay inside the same town for most of my life, even if it's more dangerous."

The Cranidos took a sip from his tea before continuing. "I guess what I'm trying to say is that you should do the same and do what makes you happy, even if other Pokémon back home are expecting something different from you. I mean, what path do you wanna follow?"
 

Cresselia92

Ace Trainer
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
"I guess what I'm trying to say is that you should do the same and do what makes you happy, even if other Pokémon back home are expecting something different from you. I mean, what path do you wanna follow?"

Icetales stared at Cabot with wide eyes as the Cranidos's last words echoed in his blank mind.

What path do you wanna follow?

"I..."

He began rubbing his paws together, his gaze darting from his half-empty cup to his paws, as if looking for an answer that wasn't there.

"I... huh..."

"Ha! Would thou look at thee, Keo'Keo X! Thou cannot even conjure a simple Blizzard!"

Standing in front of an exhausted Icetales -- no, Keo'Keo X -- was his third oldest brother, Keo'Keo III, the master of Ice-type moves. The taller Vulpix raised his muzzle arrogantly, as if offended by X's presence.

"What kind of ice Vulpix cannot channel something that simple? Truly appalling!"

X whimpered, his tails quivering. "I-I apologize... my tails still cannot channel that much energy, but with a tad more of prac--"

"Rubbish! Thou art merely spewing rubbish!" retorted III, staring at X in contempt. "Thou art a pathetic excuse of a Vulpix! Or rather," his gaze darkened, "can thee even consider thyself a
real Vulpix?"

"B-But... I am a Vul--"

III turned around, not even bothering to listen to his brother. "Do not waste thy breath with more falsities. If thou were a real Vulpix like us, thou would have found thy true talent by now." He glanced back, a glare so cold that even X himself felt like freezing. "Thou art... just a fake."

III marched away from the training room, leaving a sobbing X behind...


"It's... just that..."

Keo'Keo X, now a Ninetales wearing a similar ribbon, fidgeted on his spot as he stared at the white paper in front of the table. It was so simple, all he had to do was to fill his curriculum vitae and see if anyone needed a butler. He had received good grades, and even if he found the job degrading, at least he would have the bread on the plate, so to speak.

However... what if his new employer was someone difficult to satisfy? What if he didn't have the elegance, the poise, the skills? What if he failed at that task, too? What if... he truly was good for nothing? A talentless fox, forced to take more humble jobs for a living?

"It's not like I have any alternative," he muttered, holding the pen above the paper. "At least, I can do this." He closed his eyes. "It's not like... I can do anything more. They made it clear that... I can't do more than that. I am... purposeless."

With a heavy heart, he began writing down his curriculum and sealing his future...


"..."

The snow outside had become much thicker, almost as if a snowstorm was coming. The frozen tea solidified instantly in a block of ice, with frost covering the base of the cup. Dark flames flickered on Icetales's tail, while the Vulpix started shuddering.

"...I don't... know..." He shut his eyes and buried his head under his paws. "I don't know... what is my path..."
 

Cresselia92

Ace Trainer
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
“Well, I…”

Icetales blinked. Come to think about it, he always focused so much in trying to please and be accepted by his family and others that he never considered what he could do to please and accept himself. What did he like?

“I… enjoy quite a few things, yes. Enjoying some tea. Looking at the stars. Studying legends. Expanding my horizons and knowledge. Although…” He lifted his head and showed a thin smile. “One of my most cherished dreams as a pup… was to become a star journeyer, or an astronomer.” He looked at the sky. “To explore new worlds, new realities. To get one step closer to those stars. That… used to be my dream.”

Icetales wagged his tails. “In a sense, I suppose I have achieved my dream, no? Getting to know folks from other worlds is truly the most fascinating experience.” He sighed. “Pity that all of this will fade away…”
 

Virgil134

PMD Writer
Partners
  1. weavile
Cabot smiled. "Well, I can definitely relate to a dream like that! Of course I wanted to explore other islands instead of stars, but it's still pretty similar. I guess both our dreams came true by getting the chance to visit another world."

"And at least this won't fade away completely," he reassured. "You'll still be able to remember all of this and see any of us whenever you visit Veritas City again. I already knew Diyem and had been to Veritas before I agreed to come here, so I know that it's true."
 

Cresselia92

Ace Trainer
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
That last sentence piqued Icetales's interest, who leaned forward. "Oh, is that so? Thou had experience with cross-traveling? Sounds... fascinating."

He paused for some time, mulling over the Cranidos's words. Could there truly be a chance to see everyone again, even after saving the world?

"...I confess, despite the entire worldwide crisis, I sort of... enjoy my time here?" He tilted his head. "At least I feel more free, thou see. Without folks who stare at me all the time with scorn in their eyes, just because of my bloodline. I can be on even ground with everyone else," he wagged his tails, "and that feels lovely."
 

Virgil134

PMD Writer
Partners
  1. weavile
"Yeah, I just randomly woke up outside of Veritas City one day. That's where I met Owen and Diyem for the first time, and played truth or dare with them," Cabot began. "When I returned home I didn't remember any of it, but the second time I got to Veritas it was like I had never forgotten. I even met a good portion of the team during that second visit."

The Cranidos tapped his claws against mug before continuing on.

"I can't say when you'd visit Veritas and see us again once this is all over, but I know it will happen eventually," he said. "And if you can be more free than in your own world, I think just have fun while you're here and don't worry about what others think of you back home. Just... let it go."
 

Cresselia92

Ace Trainer
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
“Let it go…”

Icetales stared at the Cranidos for a long time, mulling over what he said. A new chance… yes, that was something he told to himself when he reached Veritas for the first time, too.

A way to temporarily forget his exhausting responsibilities from his old world and… take on new responsibilities, yes, but at least he wasn't alone. Everyone had that second chance, everyone could get the life they never got, everyone could have a chance to be… happy.

Happy… yes, he wanted to be happy. He wanted to be free. He wanted to help his friends. Help them… be happy and free. Just like him.

Then, he felt something inside of him. It was like a chilling energy, radiated from his very core and bursting outward. Was it… the sensation of freedom? Was that freedom?



If it was freedom, it felt strangely heavy. Also, his tails tingled. He felt like his appendages were stretching, which was… a very familiar sensation. He had gone through that before, but when—

…Wait. Was he… glowing? Maybe… Radiance? Was that Radiance?

…No. That wasn’t it. It was… it was…

‘For the stars! Am I… am I evolving?!’

His paws and tails spilled from the small cushion he was sitting on, easily touching the floor. His muzzle lengthened and his sense of smell sharpened, while his fur took in a fluffier and chillier aspect.

The entire process took mere seconds, but for Icetales it felt like an eternity. The light waned and he blinked, trying to get used to those new eyes. He looked downward, noticing that his fur had changed from its original candor to an elegant silver. His forepaws had black comet patterns, in contrast with the white comet patterns of his hind paws.

He brought his tails forward: black tails, with the extremities resembling white shooting stars. Even the tips were split in the vague shape of stars.

Icetales stared at his new body in dumbfound, before squealing in surprise. “For the heavens and cosmos! What?! I’m a Ninetales again? But… but… it cannot be! There was no Ice Stone, so…” He tested his new tails, feeling a bit awkward about having to control nine tails again. “H-how?”
 

Virgil134

PMD Writer
Partners
  1. weavile
Cabot looked on in surprise with his mouth agape as Icetales glowed and his form began to change. As soon as Icetales finished his evolution, Cabot gave him a cheery smile.

"Icetales, you evolved! Congratulations!"

Part of him felt a little envious due to still being a Cranidos, but he quickly pushed that thought aside. If he kept up training he'd surely be a Rampardos again soon enough, right?

"I'm not sure how you did it without an Ice Stone, but maybe it has to do with our auras being weird or something?" he said. "It seems to be the reason behind a lot of things..."
 

Cresselia92

Ace Trainer
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
"Icetales, you evolved! Congratulations!"

The once-again-Ninetales flicked his ears and scratched his cheek with a paw. He didn't quite feel like evolving was an accomplishment that deserved fanfare, but he took in the compliment all the same.

"Um, well, hurra for yours truly," said Icetales with modesty, showing a small smile. "It sure feels... weird to be a Ninetales once more, but I shall get used to it soon enough."

"I'm not sure how you did it without an Ice Stone, but maybe it has to do with our auras being weird or something?" he said. "It seems to be the reason behind a lot of things..."

Icetales brought a paw to his chin. "Oh, perhaps. I suppose this is yet another display of the unique characteristics of these bodies and this world. I sure wish we had some papyruses about the various workings of this world..." He hummed in deep thought. "Though, I reckon this event should be celebrated with a swift toast, yes?"

He extended his leftmost tail toward his tea -- he had forgotten how long and flexible his tails used to be -- and wrapped it around the mug. He brought the beverage to his muzzle and lifted it above his head.

"Well! Let us hail for the times to come, where we shall bring peace to this brave new world and strengthen the ties that link all of us!" He glanced at Cabot and flashed a smile. "And... a toast for thy future evolution, too. Thou have mighty power, good fellow, and I reckon thou shall reach thy final form in due time." He grinned and his tails wagged with enthusiasm. "Cheers!"
 

Cresselia92

Ace Trainer
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
And what a cheer that was! The Ninetales and the Cranidos shared some more tidbits about their respective worlds and dreams, their hearts fluttering with hope and joy.

Sure, there were still shadows lurking in their spirits and many more dark days were certainly waiting behind the corner, but as soon as there were shining hearts to face the wave of malice, both knew that they could prevail against all odds.

<><><>​
 
R8 ~ The Monster of the Guild

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
Later that night, Owen had indeed settled into a well-earned sleep. It was hard to tell if anything would rouse him from that slumber. After shrouding his tail with the light-covering veil for Dave's sake--not that he knew where Dave had gone--he was out like a light, snoozing quietly. Nearby, Cal was curled up into her stone, either sleeping, emulating sleep, or entering some kind of torpor that was her equivalent of sleep. She was never really able to tell, but she did like the feeling.

And yet Owen had been dragged from his bed in silence that night, pulled into darkness and moved to the dorm lounge. In the absolute quiet of the dorms, perhaps midnight or a little earlier, little growls and hisses broke the silence. Something was there, in the center of the lounge. Legend had it that it was an ancient spirit roused by the Blacklight who would feed on the life energy of anybody who passed by at night. At least, that was what Protein said, probably to keep the other Guildmates from causing trouble at night.

But anybody who passed by that night would hear it again. It was real, not just some rumor. There was... something there in the lounge, and the little fire of Owen's tail gave away its location. A shadowy thing. What was it doing to...?
 

Fusion

Exploring The Infinite
Pronouns
Him/His
As one would imagine, being a lantern sort of made it difficult to get to sleep. It was fortunate that Vix didn't need all that much sleep, but staying up so late was still annoying. She was busy reading more about Cibus and Destiny Village, when Puddle started sputtering. Something was bothering him, and he wouldn't shut up until Vix decided to check it out.

"What could possibly get you so worked up?" Vix grumbled quietly, exiting her room and floating down the hall.

"I don't know but something bad is here! You might want to grab the others and get rid of it!" Puddle said, frantic.

"If something evil showed up in the middle of Destiny Village, in the dorms where we are, then I'll fill my glass with water for a week."

Vix reached the dorms, spotting Owen by his flame. "Hey Owe--" she paused, glancing at the only other thing she could see and freezing in place. "Owen? Wh-Who's that?" Vix gulped, floating to the Charmeleon's side.
 

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
Owen seemed to be unconscious, his body bumping and twitching in subtle ways as whatever was looming over him did its work. Now that Vix ad Puddle were closer, they heard strange, growling noises from some tiny thing. Dark tendrils poked and prodded at Owen, and there were subtle, ethereal noises, like rubber being snipped and torn and stitched... It was ghastly.

And then, that small creature stopped when Vix called out. It turned around, two pinpricks of light for eyes gleaming toward the Lampent. It hissed lowly and disappeared into the floor, a great, clawed hand grasping Owen by the torso. It dragged him across the floor, away from Vix. Owen only groaned in his sleep.
 

Fusion

Exploring The Infinite
Pronouns
Him/His
Vix gulped and blinked. "Wh-What was that thing doing? Was that... a gho--"

"I TOLD YOU!!!" Puddle exclaimed. "I TOLD YOU AND NOW OWEN'S GONNA DIE!!!"

"I don't think it's trying to kill him, and we aren't gonna sit around to find out," Vix said, building back her confidence. She sped after Owen's body, brightening her ghostly flame to keep him in her sights. "Owen!" Vix called, her voice just below a shout. "Owen wake up! You're being--"

"DRAGON-NAPPED! MUGGED! DECLAWWED!!!" Puddle shouted from Vix's bag. Assorted seeds popped out of Vix's bag, most aimed at Owen's head. "GET UP ALREADY!!!"
 

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
Puddle's aim was surprisingly accurate, but this creature was swift and pulled Owen deep into the shadowy abyss. Seconds later, he reappeared on the other side of the room, the great, clawed hand digging into Owen's chest. His body jerked and something ethereal flew from Owen's mouth, which another tendril grasped in a chokehold before shoving back into the Charmeleon's mouth.

Owen's eyes flitted open and he groaned again. "Nnngh... what's...?"

The monster froze. Then, it disappeared into the ground just as Owen sat up, rubbing his head. "I feel like I got pummeled by Darkwhite again..." He blinked, squinting in the darkness. "...This isn't my room..."
 
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