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Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Adventures into Light: A Battle, A Discovery, and A Guild

by Rex

Rex In which we return to a world thought abandoned.
The first Pokemon, ostensibly that team’s leader, was avian. Blue feathers variably toned towards either sky blue or navy, with white circling its piercing blue eyes before disappearing under its chin, and two white dots on the chest. It had flippers, rather than wings, a very slight yellow beak, and yellow feet. A Piplup, a fellow Water Type. Spencer would have an advantage.

The Piplup’s companion was mammalian. Earthen tones, with an orange button nose and beady black eyes. Hardened green quills traced its back from the top of its head all the way down to its tail. Wicked looking claws on the feet, but not so on its forepaws. This was a Chespin, a Grass Type, Archie would need to take greater care. No doubt these two had gotten this far because they were the most dangerous of their potential opponents.

The two teams stared at each other for a moment, as if daring the other to be the first to make a move. The Chespin was the first to break the statemate. It charged forward, leaped into the air, and curled up into a ball. When it hit the ground, it was rolling, at surprising speed, directly at the two of them. Spencer pushed him out of the way, the Chespin sailed right past the Oshawott. The Treecko wasn’t so lucky, the enemy Grass Type clipped him in the side and sent him rolling along the ground.

“Spens!” Archie turned away from his opponent to look at his friend. Big mistake. He felt something wrap around his foot, and looked down just in time to see the vine tighten around his ankle before the Chespin launched back into its Rollout, dragging the Oshawott along with it. Archie was dimly aware that he’d lost his hat soon after this unfortunate turn of events. He was also, much more pressingly aware of how much it hurt to have sharp rocks and sand dragged along his body.

The Oshawott tried a Water Gun, to no avail, he couldn’t aim like this. The Chespin wheeled around, and Archie was swung into a wall. Then, some buried instinct kicked in. The vine still had some slack, the Chespin hadn’t gotten far enough away to wheel Archie around and continue dragging him. He brought down both paws on the vine as hard as he could. It wasn’t the most powerful of Assurances, but the vine loosened. Ahead of him, the Chespin winced, and was spilled out of its ongoing roll, right into the swing of Spencer’s tail. This time, it was the Chespin’s turn to be sent sprawling, and, what was better, the Treecko’s Pound caused the Chespin’s vine to loosen fully, Archie was free!

He staggered to his feet, brushing sand out of his fur, wincing every time his paw passed over a cut. Spencer was by his side in an instant, all but shoving an Oran Berry down the Oshawott’s throat. He ate it as quick as he could, and was grateful for the immediate reduction in pain the berry brought with it. Taking a moment to survey the battlefield, the Oshawott noticed that there was suddenly a lot of Bubbles floating around. Evidently, while Archie’s attention had been focused on the Chespin, the Piplup had been busy.

Speaking of the Chespin though, the other Pokemon was already back on its feet, looking annoyed by not terribly injured. Archie fired another Water Gun at it for good measure, and while the mammalian Grass Type was able to duck under the jet, the attack popped some of the Piplup’s Bubbles, and the force of it sent others drifting away. There was a clear path to their enemy, one that Spencer immediately leapt to take advantage of.

Archie hadn’t really appreciated how quick on his feet Spencer was before now. The Treecko set himself upon the Chespin with some force, slamming his tail across the opposing Grass Type’s face while it was still scrambling to its feet from its previous dodge. The Chespin shot a vine out from within its quills, sweeping the Treecko off his feet. Spencer grabbed at the Pokemon as he fell, Absorbing twinkles of green energy from it. The Chespin, however, used this as a chance to disengage, performing another Rollout.

The Oshawott, meanwhile, fired another Water Gun, this time at the Piplup. It countered with Bubble, and the two attacks collided, sending Bubbles drifting everywhere. Archie pointed at the avian Water Type, “Spencer! The Piplup! I’ll keep the path clear!”

The Treecko nodded, and charged the enemy Water Type. The Chespin stopped its Rollout, reaching out with another Vine Whip to trip up the Treecko. This time, however, it was Archie’s turn to protect his partner. He fired a Water Gun at the Chespin, hitting it square in the back, and Spencer jumped over its fumbled vine.

“Hey! Eyes on me!” Archie taunted. That did it, the Chespin came rolling towards him again. He stood his ground, steeling himself for this. The Chespin rammed him, and together they went rolling into a wall, and he fought not to lose his breath. He slammed the Chespin in the back with both his paws, and this time, the Assurance really stung the mammal. For a moment, he was no longer being squeezed against a wall, and he took a deep breath.

The Chespin was out for blood now. It wrapped its vines around his arms, and bit into his exposed side. Its buck tooth was sharper than it looked, and this time Archie was unable to stop the gasp of pain, and momentary loss of focus that came with it. With his arms still wrapped up in vines, he was left with few options to stop the Chespin as it tossed him against the floor, then back into the wall.


Spencer was having more luck with the Piplup. While evidently it had some combat experience, it hadn’t yet learned to effectively use its beak in combat, similar to Archie’s continued confusion over his scalchop. This meant the Water Type had little to combat the close up Treecko’s barrage of Quick Attacks and Pounds, and to make matters further worse for the avian, any good hit it managed with its own Pound or the occasional Bubble was erased by the Treecko’s Absorb. The watery irritants were having an effect - the Treecko’s speed had notably lessened from when he first rushed the avian - but this was a damage race the bird would not be able to maintain.

Luckily for the Piplup, and unluckily for Spencer, Archie’s pained gasp proved distracting. The Treecko’s head whipped towards his partner, and the Piplup was able to use the lapse of focus to headbutt the Pokemon in the gut and then put distance between them, putting up a wall of Bubbles to dissuade the Treecko from following. As it turned out, the Water Type hadn’t needed to bother, the Treecko was hurrying to his partner’s aid rather than keeping up the assault.

Yes, the Bubbles had done their work exceptionally well. Even trying to close the distance with Quick Attack, Spencer wasn’t moving fast enough. Archie was slammed into the floor, into the wall. The Chespin’s vines held him aloft by his arms, high over the floor, and swung him down again. Up into the air again, down into the ground again. The Oshawott couldn’t take much more of this. They’d come so far only to lose; if only Spencer could reach them!

“Archie!” he screamed. A fire lit deep in his belly. It built as it travelled up his chest, through his throat, into his mouth. Wicked lavender flames burst forth when he opened his mouth again. The Chespin was set alight. It screamed, and Archie was let go. The Oshawott crumpled to the floor, but he was not beamed away. Spencer bound forward, another Quick Attack set him upon the burning mammalian Grass Type. Another Pound sent the Chespin into the ground. He hit it repeatedly, not caring about the fire burning low across its fur. He hit it until it was teleported out of the Dungeon, and his fits were connecting with the sand and rocks beneath it. Then he hit the ground where it had been laying more for good measure.


Archie was only dimly aware of the Chespin’s sudden screams, and the fact that he’d been let go of. He fought to retain consciousness, he refused to allow himself to fail. He’d fought so hard, Spencer fought so hard. He couldn’t let the Treecko down. At length, he felt hands on his fur. He was rolled onto his back, sat up. He felt a berry push itself past his lips, and he forced himself to take a bite. He fought back the embarrassment of the fact that he had to be hand fed, focused on gaining enough strength to open his eyes again. Spencer was looking down at him again, worry plastered over his face. Had it really only been yesterday that they’d met in much the same situation?

“Spens!” he said weakly, “Did - Did we win?”

“Yeah, we won,” the Treecko chuckled, worry melting away. That was good, concern wasn’t a good look for him, Archie thought. “Can you stand?”

He nodded, and the Treecko pulled him to his feet. He wobbled, but waved off Spencer’s attempts to steady him. He noticed with some satisfaction that he’d wound up back near where his hat was, and picked the garment back up. It was a little dusty, but otherwise unharmed. The same could not be said for his poor coat. Being dragged along the ground and slammed into the rock walls repeatedly had torn it badly. That was a sham, he rather liked it - the coat was comfy, and reminded him of the human life he’d had, but couldn’t remember.

“I discovered my Egg move,” the Treecko smiled, “It’s Dragon Breath. I used it to defeat the Chespin.”

“I’m proud of you!” Archie grinned in return.

Their reverie was interrupted, however, by the appearance of another Pokemon. Archie didn’t recognize them from the beach, they clearly weren’t a competitor. Cream and magenta fur, with an oddly baggy pelt that bunched up around its wrists and thighs. It had a pointed muzzle, rounded ears, and its tail split into two near the tip. This was a Mienfoo, and must have been the Guild member the Gliscor had mentioned would be waiting for them at the bottom of the Dungeon.

“Gwyn tells me you boys are the only team unaccounted for topside,” the Mienfoo said, “I’ve come to congratulate you on your victory.” The Pokemon looked the two of them up and down. Archie was sure they looked incredibly shabby after their last fight, but the Mienfoo’s chest swelled with what must have been pride.

“By the looks of you, it was a hard fought victory at that. Well done, you’ll make a wonderful addition to the Lodge.”

The Mienfoo pulled a badge from a belt pouch on his back. The badge somewhat resembled a Premier Ball, white with a red band, though the ‘button’ on the ball was also red. It also had wings, oddly enough. The Mienfoo held it towards them, and before he knew what was happening, Archie was engulfed in a flash of light. His stomach was pushed up into his chest, before dropping just as suddenly as the three of them reappeared on the beach. So that was teleportation?

In contrast to how crowded the sand had been before hand, now it was almost deserted. The failed applicants hadn’t stuck around to see the successful team, and the Gliscor had left as well. It wasn’t totally empty however, as the Kirlia had come down to meet them. She waved, quickly joining the group where they stood before the entrance to the Dungeon.

“Hello again boys! I’ve come down to congratulate you,” she said, before bringing a paw up to her face as if she was about to pass on a great secret, “Viola had to go reprimand Douglas, it seemed the Foongus fell asleep on the job again!”

“Ah, I suppose we’ll be the ones rolling out the red carpet for our new inductees, then,” the Mienfoo said, stepping over to stand beside the Kirlia, “This is Gwyn, and you can call me Reid. Welcome to the Treasure Town branch of the Adventurers Guild.”

“We’ve met already,” Spencer said, nodding towards the Kirlia. The Treecko motioned towards himself and then the Oshawott in turn, “I’m Spencer, and this is Archie.”

Archie waved, feeling a little overwhelmed. He was still tired from the last fight, and trying to get his bearings from the teleport. The Mienfoo started talking again as he lead the now four of them back up the hills towards the guild building on the top of the bluff. Something about registration and leaders, Archie wasn’t paying much attention. Spencer was engaging in the conversation though, this was his dream after all, so that made sense. He would have to ask the Treecko for a refresher later.

He thought back on the events of the day, the traveling they’d done. The fights they had. Archie was taking to fighting a lot easier than he’d ever thought. This was only his second day as a Pokemon, and he was taking on Pokemon as if he was a natural brawler. He had the strength and endurance to both dish out damage and take hits. Was this a holdover from his time as a human, or was this all from being a Pokemon?

His chance for silent reflection didn’t last long, however. Once they’d reached the top of the path and the guild building was in sight again, Archie’s train of thought was broken by the sound of yelling. Two Pokemon came running out of the ‘mouth’ of the Scrafty building. The first, red limbs and a black body, a number of sharp looking blades sticking out of its torso and wrists. A Pawniard.

The second was a quadruped. A long brown body, with a yellow stripe along its back, mirrored by one going down its front. A very round head, with a pink nose and stubbly limbs, body almost flat to the ground. This was a Yungoos, and it was doing all the yelling. “Get back here, you can’t just leave! Not after all the hard work I’ve done!”

Evidently, they’d arrived at the tail end of whatever argument these two Pokemon were having. The two disappeared down the hill Archie and his group had come up, either not noticing the other four Pokemon, or not caring to. Spencer watched them go, before turning towards Reid and Gwyn.

“What was that all about?”

The Mienfoo looked to the Kirlia, but she did not answer. She had gone off into another one of her odd trances. He looked back at Spencer and Archie, and gave a reassuring smile, “Gwyn is a telepath, she’s asking around for us.”

Gwyn wasn’t in her trance for long, thankfully. When she came back, her face grew solemn, and she folded her hands over the frills of her ‘dress,’ “Sterling’s partner has quit the Lodge. Seems this happy day has been destined to be twinged by sadness.”

“Quit? Just like that?” Spencer seemed surprised. Archie was too, the Adventurers Guild had seemed so prestigious in the Treecko’s descriptions of it. Certainly, it had been a hard fight just to get in. That a Pokemon had gotten so far, only to throw in the towel. Just what had the two of them signed up for?

“Life as an adventurer is not for everyone. The training is tough, not every recruit can withstand it,” Reid explained.

“What will happen to Sterling now?” the Treecko asked, crossing his arms.

“He’ll have to decide if he wants to continue on as a solo adventurer, find another partner, or quit as well,” the Mienfoo continued, “Even though the Lodge accepts applicants in pairs, it’s not unusual for them to go their separate ways over the course of their time with us.”

“In fact, the four of us now constitute the only two complete teams currently on the roster,” Gwyn cut in.

“You two joined together?” Spencer blinked, studying the Mienfoo and Kirlia in turn. The two likely made a powerful combination, Archie supposed. Able to cover each other’s weaknesses. Their personalities also seemed to mesh well, so far as the Oshawott could tell, which likely contributed to their continued success.

“Oh yes, and Reid was such an eager boy back then, too,” Gwyn giggled, “Why, you should have seen him. He used to get so flustered around the other guild members he’d trip over his own tail!”

“Gwyn. You are embarrassing me on purpose,” the Mienfoo stated, with just the slightest edge of danger in his voice.

“Why, I resent the very accusation,” the Kirlia replied, suddenly perfectly serious again. Perhaps Archie had misjudged the pair. They were a bit weirder than he’d originally took them for. “Now then, we should go and introduce you to the Branch Master, he’ll be wanting to make your joining official.”

With that, the Kirlia shepherded them into the building. Archie hadn’t originally been sure what to expect, but as his eyes adjusted, he was surprised to find that this particular room was relatively barren. A tightly spiralling staircase in the center of the room lead down into the ground. A slight glow and the distant muttering of voices was the only thing to prove the lower levels of the guild were occupied.

“Did you guys dig this place out yourselves?” Spencer asked as the group was lead onto the stairs. Archie noted with some dismay that rather than smooth stone or anything of the sort, they were walking on roughly cut planks of wood, and there was no railing to save him if he misstepped and took a tumble. A brief sensation of falling, accompanied by a wave of vertigo, soon had the Oshawott studying the wall intently, hoping that his overactive imagination wouldn’t get the better of him.

“Oh no, we were quite lucky. The Lodge inherited this space from a prior guild, and it only required minor refurbishment and some small enlarging,” Gwyn answered breezily, apparently unaffected by the precariousness of their descent. At length the group reached a landing, and the Oshawott allowed himself to look out at the room. He could see windows cut out of the cliff wall, allowing the room some natural light. The floor was well trodden earth, with some cobblestones set up underneath desks and notice boards cluttered with papers.

They didn’t stop here, however. Instead, the group was lead down another floor, to the bottom of the staircase. The floor here was all cobblestone, expertly set and worn smooth by years of use. This floor was much less ‘busy’ than the one above it, the floorspace being wide open. In fact, if anything there was a lack of furniture on this level. There were two hallways leading off from opposite sides of the room, one each to Archie’s left and right, and another door set near to the staircase.

The source of the talking was revealed to be the Gliscor from before, presently lecturing the Foongus on the consequences of not doing a job well. The Growlithe was sat stoically nearby, his face not betraying any hit of emotion. They had either arrived at the tail end of the discussion, or the Gliscor had too much tact to give the mushroom a full tongue lashing in front of strangers. The four of them were spared a glance before the purple chiropteran turned back to the Foongus.

“Expect your punishment to come later tonight, now leave us.”

The Foongus didn’t need further encouragement. It fled down the left hallway at a remarkable speed for a Pokemon without any obvious legs. That left the six of them standing together - the Growlithe finally turning to acknowledge the newcomers. His expression finally softened, smiling in greeting.

“So Gwyn’s prediction was right! I had a feeling it would be, our encounter may have been short, but I could tell the two of you had guts,” the Growlithe said. He certainly seemed much friendlier when he wasn’t making assumptions about people based on bad information. “My name is Will, and it’s my honor to welcome you to the Adventurer’s Guild.”

“Thank you, but,” Spencer began, before trailing off. The Treecko glanced around the room. It was a spacious place, must have been difficult to carve. But the size, and general lack of furnishings, did give it a rather empty quality, “The place is a lot less lively than I anticipated.”

“Do not take our lack of cohorts as anything but a sign of our exclusivity,” the Growlithe said, proudly, “There are many Pokemon who would give anything to stand where you two are standing now.”

The Treecko and Oshawott shared a look. Archie supposed that was true, there had been quite a number of applicants. Still, perhaps the lodge set its standards a tad too high.

“If that is everything, I shall take these two to see the Branch Master,” the Gliscor said curtly, “The three of you go about your business.”

Order received, their remaining entourage dispersed. Will and Reid started back up the stairs. Gwyn gave the boys a wave, before Teleporting away, disappearing in a beam of light. Such a useful skill, assuming one could ever get used to its assault on the stomach. Now alone with the Gliscor, the Treecko and Oshawott were lead over to the nearby door. Their guide tapped a claw on the door, before turning to them.

“I’m sure I don’t have to say this, but I expect the pair of you to be on your best behavior before the Branch Master,” she said.

Archie gulped, and quickly looked himself over. Only now did he release he hadn’t actually had a chance to clean himself up any. His fur covered up any obvious cuts and bruises he still had - though he was beginning to suspect those Oran berries did a lot more than just made him feel better - but he had sand in more places than he cared to think about. Add in the dirty hat and torn coat, and he was beginning to feel a bit self-conscious.

Spencer fared marginally better, though even he was a bit scuffed up. Archie noticed he was shaking again, and the Oshawott put a hand on the Treecko’s shoulder to steady him. That got him a small smile from his partner - it was official now, they were joining the guild together after all. He turned back to the door to find the Gliscor studying them, curious, with just a minor hint of annoyance. She seemed a severe sort.

When it was obvious that neither of them had anything to say, however, she turned away, towards the door. She knocked, but opened the door without waiting for a response, and shepherded the two of them inside. The room inside was dim, thick curtains hung over the windows. Fires burning dim a brazier on either side of the room cast long shadows. The floor was a mixture of sand and dirt, though a slightly raised wooden platform against the back wall kept most of the room’s contents from getting dirty.

What those contents were consisted mainly of an absolute mound of pillows and cushions, all resting on top of a throw rug. There was little, if any, regard for color coordination, the mount practically screamed in tones ranging from the brightest pastel, to deeply saturated colors, to pillows so dim they were almost black. And, lounging within a space carved to perfectly fit its body, was a Scrafty: its head a perfect match for the facade they’d entered to get down here, yellow shed skin ‘clothing’ partially concealing its orange and black body. Smoke hung around them, giving the Pokemon a sort of hazy quality while also bathing the room in an acrid smell.

“Branch Master,” the Gliscor said, “This is the team that passed today’s exam.”

The Scrafty leaned forward, resting its head against a hand, and studied them with half-lidded eyes. Its resting face gave the Pokemon a look of disdain, or at least severe disinterest, but eventually the corner of its mouth twitched upward.

“So they are,” the Scrafty said, smoothly, “Which means they are deserving at least some measure of respect. I am Blake, you will refer to me as ‘Branch Master’ for the duration of your stay with us. Let us hope you last longer than the last pair. You have names, I imagine?”

The two introduced themselves in turn, and with that, the Scrafty leaned back into his pillow pile, and gestured at the Gliscor. “Viola, take them through orientation.”

The Gliscor had entered the room after them, and now shut the door. Stepping in front of the pair, she presented them with a pair of badges, identical to the one Archie had seen Reid use.

“These badges mark you as official members of the Treasure Town Adventurer’s Lodge. With them, you’ll be able to partake in official lodge missions, and have unrestricted access to this and any other branch lodge. This is an irreplaceable mark of your status and how you will be recognized by authorities,” the Gliscor explained.

“The consequences for losing your badge are,” the Scrafty cut in, before giving a vague gesture, “severe.”

Somehow, despite the almost carefree nature of the Branch Master’s movement, the words still sent ice down the Oshawott’s spine. He shivered despite himself before he accepted the badge. Next, he was presented with a canvas messenger bag - though Spencer was not also offered one. He accepted that as well with some confusion.

“I expect, given your partner already has one, that I do not need to explain how Wonder Bags work,” the Gliscor continued, as if she hadn’t noticed Archie’s expression. “Inside you will find a Wonder Map, which will keep track of your current location and those of any potential destinations you know of. This map only displays the Grass Continent, should your work for the Lodge take you to any other continent, you will have to procure a new map at the nearest branch office.”

“Wonder Maps are rare and powerful items, which is why we only entrust them to team leaders. Handle it with care,” the Scrafty cut in again.

Archie looked up from his bag at the Branch Master, and then at Viola, “Wait, Team Leader? Me?”

“Of course,” the Gliscor said, tilting her head ever so slightly, “Gwyn informed me that she and Reid discussed this with your partner. This was a decision you'd already made?”

The Oshawott shot a glance at the Treecko, who gave him a sheepish grin in response. This would be discussed later, when they weren’t in front of others. For now, he looked back at the Gliscor and smiled, “O-of course. I’m sorry, this is just all so fast.”

It sounded like a lame excuse, even to him. Thankfully, neither Lodge Pokemon felt the need to press him further. Instead, Viola kept right on with her explanation: “As Team Leader, the responsibility to accept missions, provision yourself properly, manage your time, and operate effectively in the field falls on you. The reputation of the lodge rests on your conduct. Remember that well.”

“Now them. We just need a team name to make you all official,” the Scrafty said, leaning forward again. Beside him, Spencer hissed.

“I hadn’t thought of that,” the Treecko said, just loud enough for Archie to hear. That definitely put them in an awkward position. The Scrafty and Gliscor were both watching them expectantly. Spencer shot the Oshawott a glance, which, unfortunately, the Branch Master seemed to pick up on.

“How ‘bout it, Team Leader?”

He was being put on the spot! Part of him couldn’t believe the Treecko hadn’t thought of this already. Wasn’t this supposed to be Spencer’s dream, after all? The Oshawott racked his brain for any kind of ideas. An Oshawott and a Treecko, a Water Type and a Grass Type. They’d met at a river full of plantlife. Riverweed? Too mean. Waterlily? Seemed a little too prissy, they were supposed to be hardened adventurers! Maybe something simpler?

His thoughts naturally drifted to the Lotads they’d encountered. A Water/Grass Type Pokemon with a lilypad on its head. It evolved twice, into Lombre and Ludicolo, though only the former kept the lilypad mimicry. But now he was starting to go in circles, thinking about water plants and the river again. It was kind of funny though, Lotad was a blue and green Pokemon. Kind of like how Oshawott was blue and Treecko was green. Blue and Green? Didn’t that make…

“Teal!” the Oshawott blurted.

Spencer chuckled, “Teal? I like that. Teal it is!”

The Treecko’s face positively lit up. Did he really find it that funny? Archie cringed inwardly. Honestly, he felt more than a little embarrassed. Still, he tried not to show it on his face.

“Hope you thought about that hard, because it’s official now,” the Scrafty said, once again leaning back into his nest of pillows. Viola cleared her throat, drawing the Oshawott and Treecko’s attention back to her.

“Well then, Archie and Spencer of Team Teal, allow me to officially welcome to you the Treasure Town branch of the Adventurer’s Lodge. May your efforts bring fame to us all, and may your names go down in history. You are dismissed for now - try to clean yourselves up a bit before dinner. Your quarters are down the left hallway when you depart here, the very last door. Mess hall is down the right hallway, you will hear the dinner call.”

They were shown out of the room, the Gliscor closing the door behind them, and leaving the pair of them alone in the guild’s main hall. Spencer made an odd noise, somewhere between a groan and a squeal, and when Archie turned to look at him the Treecko wrapped him in his arms.

“We did it Archie! Oh, I’m so excited I could barely contain myself in there!” he said, squeezing the Oshawott a bit tight for comfort. “Can you believe it? Team Teal! It’s a good name for us, especially since you had to come up with it so quickly!”

“Spens. Can’t breathe,” Archie said plaintively. Thankfully, he was released then, the Treecko looked sheepish again. The Oshawott gave his partner a reassuring smile again, “I’m proud of you, you worked really hard for this.”

The Treecko nodded, then grabbed his paw and lead him towards the crew quarters. “Come on, you heard Viola, we gotta get ourselves cleaned up quick! I can’t wait to meet the other Lodge members!”
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