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Open Pokemon-Gijinka Shifting Village

Discussion in 'Pokémon Role Play' started by AgrarianAtlas, Aug 1, 2016.

  1. Hello hello! I'm feeling all kinds of in the mood for something mushy and lovey-dovey, so this RP takes place in the culturally-esteemed Tourmaline village, isolated off the coast of nowhere. This isolated village, while not all that small, holds a strong sense of community, and is fabled for its profound love of celebrations and festivals. The concept of "shifting" which'll be explained in the story elements section, is age old, though no good tale is without antagonists. The self-proclaimed servants of Vescleram, a cult, see the practice as obscene. Some seek to harness the power, some strive to snuff it out altogether, and others just want to conquer the village as their own. Long story short, this RP may or may not be super cheesy, but still a whole lotta fun if you're into that.

    Story Elements:
    As long as documentation can remember, Pokemon can undergo the physical transformation into a human counterpart or "gijinka" at will, given some certain criteria are met. While the concept has always been shrouded in mystery, one thing is for certain: when a Pokemon falls in mutual love with another or others, each gain the power to shift. When a child is born to two shifting humans, they get one glimpse of their infant as a human, before they transform into the Pokemon that is their spirit, and will remain in such a form for many years to come. The Spring Solstice is soon to come, an event in which young teens socialize at a large festival, and then band together with newfound friends to leave home and explore the world, all with the hopes that they meet someone they love along the way.

    Rules and Whatnot:
    1.
    No one-sentence replies. I will actually get on your case so quickly if I see this consistently. We'll set four lines of text as a bare minimum. I'm no hardass, so there will probably be plenty of exceptions. With dialogue, I understand that it can be rough. Describe feelings, describe actions, describe setting, describe anything, just don't make me mad at you over short replies.
    2. You may join in at any time, so long as you pm me first. If you join at a later time, make sure you read up on posts, so you know where the story is at.
    3. Always strive to make your character feel real feelings. This is gonna be a pretty casual rp, but still, we want it to be interesting
    4. In the event of battles, describe the actions you're taking. Instead of "he used rollout on the Eevee" go for something more like "he tucked his head in with his quills, smashing into the unexpecting Eevee from the side."
    5. Again, this is gonna be mushy and romantic, but overtly sexual scenes are gonna be awkward for everyone. Don't be overly graphic, or better yet, just leave it as implied. Admin Edit: This is actually stated in our global rules and applies globally, not just to RPs.
    6.
    Swearing and violence may or may not be inevitable.
    7. No pure OOC posts. I'll make a discussion thread if this RP kicks off at all. You can, however, do some quick OOC-BIC stuff with your posts.
    8. This is just a casual little RP. Don't be rude to your fellow RP'ers out of character. We're here for a fun time.

    Character Skeleton Example:

    Name: Charlotte
    Species: Sandslash
    Age (Optional): Doesn't really matter, since we'll probably be all around the same age anyways, unless you want to specify otherwise.
    Gender: Female
    Sexuality: Bisexual
    Personality: Loves to laugh. Charlotte is curious and giddy, but with a shameless love of poetry. Has a heartfelt appreciation for the shapes and colors that make up the world around her, and for her likewise people who can stop and smell the roses. Still, she's plenty down to earth, and is fully aware of how cheesy that all sounds.

    Another admin edit: Remember the use of Legendaries, even as plot elements, requires staff permission. No one authorized a Darkrai here. Relevant comment edited, if you really must involve Darkrai, follow the procedure outlined in the RP forum rules.

    And so it begins!
    ----------------------------------------------------
    "Lottie darling! You know I expect you to look your best in the upcoming Solstice." Her mother, a Magmar, chimed with a sugar-sweet tone, swooning and nostalgic over the festival in question.

    "I know Mom. You've made it pretty clear." Charlotte smiled at her mother's fixation. She'd grant her the pleasure of obsessing over the solstice. That was the fun of having a kid, right? "We've got a day left before it happens. A quick stroll around the lake never hurt anyone."

    Her mother, stricken with a new realization, practically shoved her out the door. "By Arceus, you're right! Go now! Meet your lifetime's sweetheart in a lakeside sonata, then seal the deal at the festival tomorrow!"

    "Yep, sure. Alright Mom. Seeya." The door had already been shut on her, so with her mother's ridiculous state of passion fresh out of her mind, she strolled down the dirt roads, feeling particularly chipper in the warm evening sun. The lakeside was quite a ways away, not that she minded of course. In her experiences, the beauty of the world was most visible when she was alone. Not that she hated socialization by any means, she had quite an appreciation for her fellow Pokemon. It was just the sort of thing she thought was to be enjoyed solo, although she did often hope that something would come and change her mind. Her stout legs meant that she traveled slowly, but the sight of the tangerine-tinted sky was plenty enough to appease her, and the stark-white cherry blossoms blew from their trees in the gentle wind.
     
    #1 AgrarianAtlas, Aug 1, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2016
  2. Name: Lucky
    Species: Lucario
    Gender: Male
    Sexuality: HeteroSexual
    Personality: Smart, Brave, Not very talented. Likes to Relax


    Lucky was really popular. He was the son of the Village's founder his father. His father was dead, meaning he was the new village founder or "mayor." Lucky was usally at Mt. Aura. Named after his Father. He would lie down at the top and relax. Today he had no choise but to stay in the village due to the Solstice Sun. He had to announce certain things. It was a bane in his existence. He sighed and returned to the village.
     
  3. Charlotte took her sweet time on her way to the lake, taking a moment of sonder for each individual. Truth be told, she hardly knew a thing about love. For each one of these passerbys, there was a soulmate, or soulmates, depending on one's own perception. She sighed in contemplation. Would one of these strangers really just whisk her and her breath away just as her mother said? Surely, these things weren't that simple.

    Speaking of simple, Lucky, one of Tourmaline's higher-ups, caught her eye. Charlotte had always known him to be bland, characterized in five words or less, and the idea that there was a person for him too was one that perplexed her. Still, he had stood there for a moment, longing to pay a visit to the mountains and the wilds, before turning back around. Perhaps he had a bit more to him than she thought?

    "Evening, Lucky." She called out of courtesy, barely paying him a glance as she shambled further on and out of town.
     
  4. "Wha!" Lucky said. Grabbing a Creating a Bone from midair. He quickly turned around to see Charlotte. "Oh. Sorry Charlotte." Lucky apologized. He broke the bone, making it vanish. "Hows it Been?" Lucky asked. Lucky only knew her after one time meeting. It was a rare time. "So, hows it going?" He asked.
     
  5. Name: Spyre
    Species: Skarmory
    Gender: Male
    Sexuality: Heterosexual
    Personality: Klutzy and flighty fit Spyre's description perfectly. He tries to be kind and nice, but social skills are not his forte, and he has a tendency to forget things. Once you do get to know him, he's an great person. He's kindhearted, but simply doesn't go about things the right way most of the time.

    Spyre noticed two others speaking to each other. He wandered a bit closer to the two, but not very close. The two seemed to know each other, already going by a first name basis. Must be pretty neat. I wonder, have I seen either of them before? The girl looks pretty familiar. He thought to himself. While thinking, he wasn't paying attention to the fact that he kept walking and bumped right into her. "Oh, uh, sorry, I just, uh, wasn't really paying attention." He said, one hand behind his head as he gave a close-eyed apology smile.
     
  6. A chuckle escaped from Charlotte at the sight of the mayor. "Been well, doing well, though I guess I'm a little stressed with the Solstice coming up. You're a little on-edge too, I'll take it? Rough stuff with—" A light thud against her back interrupted her, and she turned to find a mild-mannered Skarmory giving her an apologetic rundown.

    "Woah! Are you alright? I've got the quills all over me and all." She pointed to the set of spikes lining her back worriedly, checking him up and down for signs of injury, before thankfully finding him bereft of any. With a sigh of relief, she wiped her forehead, thankful that steel types were so sturdy.

    "Phew, glad I didn't accidentally skewer you the night before the Solstice. You sure you're okay?" Charlotte immediately shut up, realizing that she hadn't even given him the opportunity to speak beforehand.
     
  7. "Solstice? Whaddya- oh yeah, the Solstice. I forgot. Oops." Spyre rubbed the back of his head, looking down to his side. "Oh, and yeah, I'm fine."

    "I'm, uh... I'm Spyre. Nice to pleasure - er, pleasure to name - ugh! Nice to meetcha!" He introduced himself, almost failing at it. Having just interrupted a conversation, he felt like he should just back off and let Sandslash and the Lucario continue.

    "I-I should go, I was just heading over to... where was I going? Uh... let's see, I... hm..." It slipped Spyre's mind where exactly he was headed, so he tried mentally retracing his steps - to no avail. "C'mon, think!" He said, hitting himself in the head to try and jog his memory.
     
  8. "A pleasure, Spyre. My name's Charlotte, and I'm sure you know Lucky." She chuckled awkwardly, being musing over the situation, unsure how to react to his clear inner turmoil. "We're not really talking much. Just a brief couple of how-do-you-dos and I'm gonna be off on my way."

    Gathering her thoughts, and leaving the two to their own, Charlotte picked up where she left off, with her slow, ambling gait out of town, letting her claws touch grass before turning back to the two for some goodbyes. "Spyre, it was nice to meet you. Lucky, good luck with the mayor duties. Look forward to seeing you both at the festival."

    Admittedly, Charlotte knew that the quick departure might've been a little rude, and while it stuck out in her mind with a bit of guilt, she had bigger things to worry about. She wasn't a hopeless romantic like her mother. Well, maybe she was, but maybe just not quite as outwardly so. At the very least, her situation was a poetic one. That should've cheered her back up to some extent, but right now, all she had were her thoughts, and the empty pit of her stomach. She wished that she could go forward in time twenty-four hours from that very moment. It was strange to ponder, the fact that most everything that weighed down so heavily on her shoulders would be resolved in only that span of time. She sighed, watching the moon just begin to peek out over the bevy of mountains surrounding Mt. Aura. The chat that she had with Lucky and Spyre would end up cutting her time short. Funny, this was without a doubt the night she needed it most.
     
  9. Spyre watched as Charlotte departed, leaving the mayor, whose name was Lucky, and himself to talk. I have no clue how to talk to a mayor! She did it so easily! Do I go by a first name basis like she did, or do I call him mayor, or... wait! I was going somewhere! Ahh! He argued with himself in his mind. What Spyre didn't realize until the argument was over was that he was speaking to himself. Aloud. "Oh, garbage. Uh... I-I'm sorry, I should... uh... a-ha! I remember! I was just headed home! Yea! Bye!"

    Spyre ran off, almost tripping over himself. He remembered that he was supposed to head home ASAP, or his parents would be angry. He went directly to his house, opened the door, and looked inside to see absolutely nobody there. "Huh. Okay. Then maybe I beat them home? Funny, that almost-conversation seemed like it took way longer than it actually did." He said to himself as he shut the door.

    The house was dark, so Spyre fixed that quickly as he headed to the kitchen. He wasn't really hungry, but he figured his family would be, so having food ready would definitely benefit them... hang on... "Ugh! I was supposed to be getting the food! That's why they aren't home, because I'm way early!" He yelled to himself in frustration.

    Spyre ran right back out of his house and went to go look for the berries that his parents wanted him to go get. Let's see, they wanted Oran berries, Cheri berries... or did they want Chesto? Or Custap? Maybe it was Pomeg? Gah! Now is not the time to forget! Oran, Chesto... Cheri? Ugh!! He thought to himself as he ran. Similarly to earlier, he wasn't paying attention to where he was going, so not only did he go the wrong way, heading back over by Lucky, but he ran directly into a rock with a loud thud. "Ow ow... gotta get the stuff! Where... huh? How did I get back here?" He said to himself, sitting down for a moment.
     
  10. There was a space between the mountains, a passageway that Charlotte was accustomed to taking in her travels. Like always, she brought one claw down across the hard rock, engraving another scratch in with the abundance of tally marks, each one signifying a visit, before carrying on. The forestry she faced ahead was thick, but for the most part, she had thinned out a path on her nightly treks through the woods. A few branches to be pushed out of her face later, she had broken through the treeline.

    Like always, the instant she strayed from the mass of trees, everything that went on around her had stilled. The lake was encompassed on all sides by the ring of forest, but graciously, there was plenty of room on the lakeshore to walk around. A carved-out stump stood unceremoniously in the way, serving as a chair of sorts for when Charlotte sought to rest.

    And so, with the moon high overhead, its ivory glow simmering on the rippling waters, she began to dance.

    Slow at times, like the lazy glide of the water's edge, but riddled with quick movements, sharp and full of poise and purpose, at others. With all the grace a Sandslash could muster, the crystalline tune of a piano hummed in the back of her skull, and with the moon at its highest, her clawed feet skidded through the dirt. She spun smoothly on her toes again and again and again, signifying the finale as the song met its end.

    Her practice, too, had met her end for the night. Melancholy, yet still contented by the sight of the scenery around her, she made her way home, bound for a night's worth of exhausted sleep as the Solstice sat on its eve.
     
    Hisseki likes this.
  11. "Riiiiggghhht." Lucky thought. He rushed back to the village leaving a gust of wind behind him. He had made it to the town square. The Sun was overhead and other Pokemon were setting up Banners and ribbons. The celebration would last untill the Strawberry Moon would come up. Thats when the pokemon would pick thier love. It was also when all they would do was slow dances. Lucky dreaded it. Lucky continued to help set up, having to be an "Good Influence" to the younger Pokemon.
     
  12. Oh great. The mayor thinks I've lost my mind. That's exactly what I need before the Solstice. Spyre thought as he headed back home. Along the way, he found a single Oran berry, but not much else. It was the one berry he was sure he needed.

    In the village, everyone was setting up for the celebration. Ignoring other's requests to have him help them, he walked home and opened the door. His parents were home, but they were sleeping, so in order to not disturb them, he simply left the berry on the table and went off to go apologize to those who needed help.

    Some of the village's inhabitants were setting up banners. They were the ones who wanted Spyre's help, so he went to go do so. Just as he was to place his first banner, he tripped over something and ripped it. "Oh gosh. Oh no, uh, I'm so sorry, I didn't mean for that to happen. I swear that was an accident." He apologized with sincerity, hoping that the others weren't mad at him. So far, this day was not his best. He hoped deep down that the Solstice could change that.
     
  13. (OOC: for the record, the time of day in my last post was nighttime. I guess we're gonna say that it's morning now, and that Lucky is helping set up the day of)

    With a surprisingly good night's sleep under her belt, Charlotte's mother and father made sure that she was up bright and early, lovey-dovey as ever together, while the former was hellbent that her daughter looked her absolute best. There wasn't really much that anyone could do to make her look any better, although her mother did insistently press something in her claws before getting her out the door.

    "This was the ear clip that I wore when your father and I first danced under the strawberry moon. I want you to have it." She proclaimed gleefully, clapping her hands, and looking to her daughter as if she'd just handed her the deed to her inheritance.

    Charlotte, however, wasn't quite sure what to do with it, and while the look on her face already made that quite clear, she tried to sound as grateful as her mother seemed to want her to be.

    "Uhh, thanks a lot mom? I'll... put it on now."

    The ornament was made of some sort of bronze-colored metal, with flexible woven beams, and Braviary tail feathers patterned delicately in the mix. It felt well enough tucked away behind her ear, and with that, she was gone. Charlotte thought again about the strawberry moon. The entire point of the festival was just to meet people, not to fall in love with them on the spot. Still, every year there were always some sap who confessed their love to someone they had met only an hour before, and then there was always the sadder sap who claimed to reciprocate that love. Charlotte had it all planned out in her head. She would strive to make a close-knit adventure group, go exploring the world as was expected of her, and then fall in love with someone along the way. Sure, she would slow dance with someone if she had a partner, that was half the fun, but true love in a night? Bah.
     
  14. After awhile, the decorations were complete, and everything was set up. Lucky wasnt planning to dance, but had to. Tons of Pokemon were expecting him to be there. Before his Father's Death, Lucky wasnt that important to anyone. Now that he is a new "Mayor" it was expected for him to be there, mostly because of his age. Lucky had to practice dancing, and his speech. "Its gonna be a long day." Lucky sighed.
     
  15. It was early into the festivities when Charlotte arrived. Not unexpected, though she wished her mother hadn't shoved her out the door so quickly. All she could really do right now was sneak a plate or two of finger foods from the buffet and strive to meet the glance of others. Come to think of it, that's all anyone could do this early, and unless Charlotte wanted to get herself lodged in a mass of Pokemon with the same idea, she'd have to steer clear of the buffet section.

    She looked around, with no one truly striking her interests. Maybe that Skarmory, Spyre, so she remembered, might be around? He seemed interesting, so long as he didn't turn out to be a one-trick Ponyta. Lucky was surely somewhere nearby. He may be simple, but after those longing looks that he gave to the mountains the night before, maybe that wasn't quite as true as she thought.

    Shambling along past many a festival stand and traditional decoration, Charlotte decided to just walk around, and wait for anyone to catch her attention.
     
  16. It was close to an Hour Lucky had to practice. He was practicing his Speech more than dancing. He had known how to dance for almost a year now. He was in a dance class his mother signed him in, when he was a Riolu. Feeling confident, Lucky walked outside. There was a "good" amount of pokemon there. "It's more than last year." Lucky smirked.

    Lucky walked around, there wasnt many pokemon around. There was atleast 3 Pokemon he knew. Lucky turned to the stage. They were getting set up. "Ugh." Lucky sighed. He turned to the buffet. If he was gonna have a speech, he was gonna eat before it. Lucky grabbed a few oran berries, and some fresh water. He turned around to see Charlette. To be honest Lucky knew Charlotte was one Lucky didnt expect to see, atleast from Lucky's knowledge, from meeting her a few times.
     
  17. Spyre chose not to continue helping the others in decorating. He had ripped one banner, and he wasn't about to do it again. This time, as he walked, he paid extra attention to the ground. He didn't want to trip on things and rip more stuff. That wouldn't bide well with everyone else. They were working their hardest trying to make the place look festive, but all Spyre would do is make the place look abandoned and broken down. Instead, he wandered around in a practically open area close to the buffet. There wasn't really anyone nearby - or so he thought until he bumped into something, something familiar. He looked at what exactly he collided with, and lo and behold, it was the Sandslash knows as Charlotte. "Oh. Hey there, Charlotte was it? Sorry about bumping into you... again. I was focused on not tripping over anything. In hindsight, I probably should focus more on not bumping into others. My bad... again." He said, sounding like a broken record.

    As always, hindsight is 20/20. Future Sight would be awesome to have in these situations... er, before these situations. He thought as he looked Charlotte awkwardly in the eyes. Ya know, I think mom and dad met like this... they might've been on a boat though... I can't remembe- why am I thinking of this now?! Spyre would've been fine with the situation had it not been for the fact that he said his thoughts out loud again. He was told he had a habit of doing that.

    "Uh... oops." He looked to the side, scratching his head in embarrassment.
     
  18. Perking up at the sight of a familiar face, Charlotte looked him up and down yet again, making sure he hadn't scratched himself up too badly on her quills. Sturdy as ever, he seemed fine externally, though as usual, he was struggling to hold it together internally.

    "Hey Spyre. Nice to run into you again. Well, nice of you to keep running into me more like it." She giggled at the absurdity of the situation. "No need to apologize, you're the first person I've recognized all day. Y'know, Pokemon and human existences are a beautiful thing and all, but then there're times like these where we're expected to go talk to them. Don't suppose you have anyone you're here with? We could stick together, with societal strength in numbers and all that."
     
  19. "Strength in n-numbers? Yea, that makes sense. I personally have nobody else to be with so... where was I going with that? Whatever. Point is, sure, we can stick together." Spyre managed to muster up enough willpower to speak without ditching Charlotte, though he stuttered in the beginning and forgot what he was originally going to say, but that was aside the point.

    Then it dawned on him that conversational skills were not a set of skills he was proficient in using. Using prior knowledge of the interactions between his parents, he tried to piece together something that would make sense to say. "Um... it's a nice day out today, huh?" He said awkwardly, as if the situation itself wasn't awkward enough to begin with. Oh my goodness what am I doing? Wait, am I speaking out loud?... Spyre thought, focusing on not speaking while thinking. Nope, okay, I'm good. Ahem. Ahh! Dialogue! How do I do this? Okay, okay, don't panic. I've got this! It's simple, mom and dad do it all the time. It's just like that, only I haven't known this person for years. Or months. Or weeks. Really, I'm pretty sure I met her yesterday...

    Spyre's eyes darted around as he waited for a response, hopefully not one pointing out how silly he might've looked or sounded.
     
  20. "Yeah, it is awfully nice out. Sun in the sky, no sign of rain... are you particularly fond of festivals? Arceus knows that Tourmaline finds an excuse to throw a festival every third day of the week, which is nice, don't get me wrong, though I never much get the chance or occasion to attend very many." She tapped her claws against the dry dirt beneath their feet, scratching away without any real goal or purpose in the act. As much as she would've loved to make more friends, or truly muster the energy to attend social events in the first place, she felt as if she genuinely didn't know what to say sometimes, which frightened her out of it. Well, she could cut herself some slack. She was doing fine right now, wasn't she? Then again, maybe it was just by comparison to Spyre's shy nature.

    Charlotte spotted Lucky out of the corner of her eye, though judging from the crowd gathered around a crudely-assembled stage and podium, he'd be busy with his speech awfully soon. The cheery folk music was fading, more and more Pokemon were showing up, and all eyes were expectant on their mayor as she she sauntered along with her day's companion.
     
  21. "No, I-I don't really go out much. Talking to others isn't something I normally... do." Spyre responded, for whatever reason struggling to find the word 'do'. "From the looks of this one, though, the others must be pretty neat."

    Maybe I should start going to things. It would make talking less of a hassle... but that would mean confronting the problem sooner than required. No! Brain! Stop logic-ing things to contradict my statements! Spyre watched as what looked like a small army of Pokemon gathered around the stage. What is this, a - wait, I should actually be speaking to ask questions. He thought before opening his mouth. "So, is there going to be a speech soon? Everyone's gathered over there, and the music is getting softer." He asked, although it wasn't hard to acquire the answer just from looking at the situation. "Where's Lucky?"

    Spyre looked around and finally noticed him. Lucky was awfully close to him and Charlotte, which sort of put him on edge a bit more. He had really no idea of how to talk to others, let alone those with an important status when compared to that of himself, or an important status in general. Instead, he pretended as if he wasn't looking around and instead focused on the Sandslash in front of him. Strength in numbers may be correct, but even so, the lower that number is, the better for my sanity. He thought, simultaneously reminding himself not to think aloud.
     
  22. Lucky head toward the stage, as for it was almost time for the speech. "For a Guy named Lucky, looks like he's pretty Unlucky!" A Golem joked. Lucky heard other Pokemon laughing, he sighed and continued. Lucky had everything mesmorised. He was going to speak about the Solstice Sun and Strawberry Moon, how they would only appear every 50 years, he would give an Inspiration Poem, and finish. Lucky gave out one last sigh, and walked up to the microphone.
     
  23. "Looks like Lucky's finally up for his speech. C'mon Spyre, maybe there's still room in the crowd for us to watch." The Skarmory didn't exactly have an arm for Charlotte to drag him by, so she simply gestured as she shambled her way into the approaching masses, still going plenty slow enough for Spyre to follow.

    She could never get enough of each year's cheesy speech and spiel. Yeah yeah, there was the Strawberry moon once every fifty years, just like the Orange moon, which happened last year, and the Pomegranate moon, the year before that. They all functioned under the same premise: confess your love the day of, not that any Pokemon suddenly gained the ability to shift with someone they'd just met. For one thing, it was never not fun to watch, and Charlotte jumped at the opportunity to watch the speech now.
     
  24. "Hey, hold on a second Charlotte!" Spyre said, regretfully making his way into the massive crowd of Pokemon to the aforementioned Sandslash girl.

    He was aware of the moons, the Orange, the Pomegranate. His mother never stopped talking about the Strawberry Moon in particular, but Spyre's mind adapted to her by simply not focusing on her. At this particular moment, he started to regret that. Maybe I should've listened? Maybe that would've given me a little more confidence in a situation like this... ha! Who am I kidding? Other Pokemon are still super weird, they are all variables. They can't be predict- I'm doing it again! Logic-ing my way out of my own thoughts! He thought, muttering his thoughts to himself habitually as he pushed past some not-so-happy Pokemon. He kept his wings in tight, trying his hardest to not scratch anyone while simultaneously trying not to fall over. Momentarily, he lost Charlotte in the crowd, but quickly found her by looking for her quills. As he walked, someone in the crowd pushed him slightly, but just enough to knock him off balance, and once again right into Charlotte. He got up, glaring back at the crowd, looking for and failing to find the one who pushed him. "I'm getting sick and tired of falling. Sorry, for the third time, Charlotte. Just when you think you've taken every precaution, bam! Something you don't expect happens." He said, laughing at himself for a second before wondering what it was exactly that he just did.

    Did I just converse with someone without stuttering? And I even made a joke!... Sorta. Spyre thought, not talking. He tried to smile, but it came out like a smirk instead. I guess a more genuine smile isn't one that can be forced... noted. He thought, focusing again on not making his thoughts heard. Remembering why the two were even in the crowd to begin with, Spyre stood next to the Sandslash girl, someone he was already comfortable being around, and waited for the mayor's speech to commence.
     
  25. "Hello everyone! Welcome to this year's Strawberry Moon Festival! The Strawberry Moon only comes every 50 years, and so we celebrate It's arival. Along with the Orange Moon, and Pomegranite Moon." Lucky snikered. "Without further a do, let the Festival Begin!" Lucky finished.

    Lucky walked off the stage, and laughed. He had never felt so relieved in his life. "Oh Arceus." Lucky sighed.
     
  26. Well that was disappointing. All of that buildup in the hopes of a laughably cheesy speech, and that's what they got out of Lucky. Charlotte realized that she was now lodged in a crowd, and that she'd brought poor Spyre along in her impulse. Oh gee, she'd almost lost him somewhere along the way hadn't she? Even now, he was smushed in a slight ways behind her, and in the rapidly dissipating mass of Pokemon, they were getting separated. She was merciful, and the last thing she would ever do was strand him in there.

    Claws outstretched, she clung onto his wing with her claws, holding onto it tightly as the horde started to move. Before long, it'd thinned out enough that she could let go, and she caught her breath after all the excitement. Charlotte knew that Spyre was none for crowds, and felt a brief surge of guilt as she imagined the fear he could've felt if he'd somehow lost her.

    "Oh I'm so sorry Spyre! I dragged you along all for nothing, and almost lost you at a point there."
     
  27. Lucky had finished his speech and stepped off of the stage. Well that was anticli- ow, ow, what the heck? Spyre felt a sharp pain in his wing, but didn't move or make a scene. Rather, he waited until the crowd thinned to even move. Once it did, he looked at his wing to reveal that Charlotte had been clinging on to his wings while the crowd dissipated, and she did so rather tight. She had a good enough grip to produce some markings on his wings. Given, they weren't going to be permanent, but they existed for the time being. As he was about to speak, Charlotte apologized to him. This was a turn of events he hadn't expected, as normally he was the apologetic one. "Woah, Charlotte, it's fine. I actually enjoyed it, for what little it was. While it was a short speech, it was calming, sorta, ya know?" He said, reaching behind his head with his wing, the wing that got scratched.

    Realizing which wing he just lifted up, he went wide-eyed for a second before quickly switching wings. Great going, Spyre, make one situation awkward with a simple movement. Is that a superpower? It's gotta be one. He thought to himself.
     
  28. "I-your wing! I'm sorry. All this apologizing has gotta be annoying for you by now. I thought I knew my own grip a little better than that?" Charlotte tried to be slick with the little bit tacked onto the end, putting an arm behind her head and narrowing one eye expectantly to herself, before realizing how unsure she really sounded, setting her claws to her sides with a sigh.

    "I really am sorry for getting ahead of myself. These things are a curse, I swear- no, I'm the only curse here." This series of events was making Charlotte think back a ways. There were old friends who were never really friends after all, a typical occurrence in a village youth. It was just part of life, so she believed, to blame oneself for these things, and suffer blow after blow to one's self-confidence before even thinking about raising a fist. Each and every little thing that happened, they'd found a way to make the Sandslash feel like it was her fault, and somehow, she'd just always convinced herself that it was true. Deep down, these old friends, she couldn't blame them, could she? It was just the way they all acted, manipulative and self-serving. Just like how Charlotte was so...

    "...But I really did have fun. You're right. It was calming." She managed a small smile, her voice turning to a mutter. "C'mon, lemme see your wing. I'm sure I can patch it up with something."

    She stood on her hindclaws, wobbly with her not-so graceful stature, as a shout sounded nearby. The silhouettes of Pokemon, shrouded in solid darkness despite the sunset's pinkish glow, lined the hillside in the distance.
     
  29. "Woah, Charlotte, calm down, okay? There's no curse here, and even if there was, it certainly isn't you. Even if we met only recently, I can tell you are a nice girl, and you shouldn't be putting yourself down." Spyre said, letting the aforementioned Sandslash examine his wing.

    Seconds before hearing a shout, Spyre's brain pieced together exactly what he had just said to Charlotte. Instantly, a blush spread across his face as he turned to look away. The shout startled him a bit, making him twitch slightly. Whatever it was, and whoever it belonged to, it didn't even matter to him much at the given moment. For whatever reason, he felt like he was the only one there, him and Charlotte. It felt like they were in a world of their own, and Spyre didn't know why. It's my mind making me feel things, it's gotta be, especially after what I just said. It's just playing a trick... no, this feels too... too real to be a trick... then what the heck is this? Spyre, c'mon, think! He screamed at himself mentally as he unknowingly turned back to face Charlotte, the bright pink blush still on his face.

    Why do I feel so... I dunno!? This is... I just... I don't...

    His final verdict was to stop thinking about it, and to simply carry on with what he was doing. Unfortunately, that involved continuing his speaking from earlier. "Charlotte, you are kind, and funny, and by no stretch of the means are you a curse. If anything, you'd be one heck of a blessing." He said, his mind furiously attempting to shut him up.

    After succeeding, his blush had increased tenfold. What the heck did I do that for?! Ah, brain, quit making me do things!!
     
  30. Charlotte's expression mirrored Spyre's, the cream-white of her cheeks taking on a rosy hue.

    "A... a blessing?"

    The word itself played through her mind. His kind words, the blush on his cheeks, so that Charlotte hardly noticed nor minded when she lost her balance, falling back so that she sat on the ground. A doofy smile took over her face. He really thought so much of her? This was... so much more than the cheesy jargon her mother always talked to her about. There were her and Charlotte's father, and now here were her and Spyre. This was the stuff of fables, so she thought, nothing more and nothing less. Yet still, plain as day, here was Spyre, and here was she, a blessing in his eyes.

    She wanted to hug him, to do something, anything, to express her appreciation for those words. A lifetime of beating herself up over the smallest of things, and this, this alone had convinced her that it was the start of something better. Unfortunately, her stocky form, quills, and claws didn't allow her much hugging. She knew what it was, but she wouldn't dare attempt it for fear of putting him at risk.

    Well, she still had her words, and nothing, not even her biologically-abrasive Sandslash body could rob her of that now. Maybe it wasn't love yet, but it was the start of something new, and something beautiful that she needed badly in her life.

    "Spyre I... you think I'm a blessing?" Saying the word out loud, a feeling she couldn't quite name blossomed up inside of her. Shaking her head once, she set herself back on track. "Can't you see? You're the real blessing. What seem like the smallest, most insignificant of things to others, you've managed to see the worth in, and that's a beautiful thing. This whole festival, that shtick with the speech. The reasons why you like them... they're all so simple, but... you took interest in them, same way I did." She didn't feel as if her point was getting out quite as well as she hoped, but a terrified scream sounded from the bumbling mass of people nearby, same place where the shout did that moment in time earlier.

    Ms. Magdalen, a Toxicroak, and one of the older, wittier members of the village was up to her waist in the shroud of this darkness. She'd sought to chastise those troublemakers on the hillside, particularly an Ariados, but it had lashed out at her. Within moments, this strange silhouette of inky blackness consumed her, and with a level of speed she hadn't managed since her youth, she too was lunging down to attack the masses of people. Charlotte watched, wide-eyed at the spectacle. At first, she thought it was an act, just part of the festival. But the moment that Magdalen's creaky old legs were forced to move as they were, and as the swarming crowd began to fight back, it was clear that this was no joke.

    "Oh Arceus..." she muttered, standing dazed at the sight in disbelief. Urgency filled her, watching as the villagefolk were gradually becoming overpowered by whatever forces were at work here. Checking both ways for anyone else who was nearby, not quite fleeing yet, her legs carried her a few feet instinctively as she called to the mild-mannered Skarmory. "Spyre! We gotta go."
     
  31. Spyre spaced out, staring into Charlotte's eyes as she basically praised him, something he really wasn't used to ever hearing. Cherishing every single second of it, a smile slowly crept onto his face - until a scream echoed from the massive crowd of others nearby.

    Spyre couldn't tell what exactly was happening, but it involved a well known person in the town - Ms. Magdalen the Toxicroak - and a swarm of others. They were all... fighting!? What was happening?

    "Oh Arceus... Spyre! We gotta go."

    Charlotte had taken a few steps back in fear. Something was really wrong, and Spyre knew it. "Okay, it's time for me to drag you places. C'mon!" Spyre said, ducking under her to swiftly lift her up onto his back. "Sorry if this is awkward, but I believe this is the best method of transportation. Don't worry, I'm made of steel, so hold on tight!"

    With that warning, he ran quickly away from the mayhem. In times like these, knowing Agility would've been great, but he didn't. Running as fast as he could while attempting to maintain both his own balance and Charlotte's, he ran away, dodging trees, houses, and the decorations that the villagers had worked ever so hard to set up. Once on the opposite outskirts of town, he slowed down to a stop and tried to catch his breath. It wasn't that Charlotte was heavy, not at all, but he wasn't used to both running fast and running over a large distance. "Do... do you think... we're far enough... away?... Oh boy..." Spyre managed to say in between breaths.
     
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