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Unread 11-11-2013, 02:03 PM   #1
Astral Harmony
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Default Pokemon Umbral: Mission V ~ Where Sane People Fear To Tread

The Corpsemire and the Hungry World...

What fine vacation spots. The kids would love it!

Mission Outlook

1. Query Nosferatu as to Myrie's situation
- Gain Access to the Corpsemire
- Navigate the Corpsemire to reach Nosferatu
- Have Jeanette Ricewood speak with Nosferatu

2. Acquire Demon Upgrades in the Hungry World
- Enter the gateway into the Hungry World
- Reach the Kimono Kastle
- Ingest a Magatama (for those who are seeking demonic upgrades)

3. Return to PATCA HQ
- Leave the Hungry World
- Return to Fainas Metropolis

They had been on the road for nearly two hours now, all buddied up in a pair of armored transport rigs.

"The road is pretty bumpy now," Bianca said, feeling the need to break the ice to help her get over her nervousness. "I'm glad these seats are padded well."
Irene, who had been sitting across from Bianca, woke up. "We're not on a road, Miss Tanders."
"Huh?"

Irene unbuckled herself and opened one of the windows. The air was warm and dry, and they were clearly a long distance from civilization. It was all just grass and dirt plains with trees and here and there. The local Pokemon gave them a cursory glance, but otherwise ignored the vehicles. "There's no road that goes to the Corpsemire," Irene continued. "We've pulled off the road about four minutes ago, and should be at the edge of the Corpsemire within the hour. I think it'll take about forty more minutes to be there."

"So the Corpsemire used to be a battlefield where a bloody part of the Second Successionary War was fought, huh," Myrie said as she swung her legs forward and back. "I learned about it in school, but to think I'm really going to see the place. I bet my teacher will be surprised."
"When you first get there, you'll swear you've somehow been teleported to a different planet," Irene told the girls. "It's a very disconnected kind of place, both beautiful and horrible. You'll just have to see it when we get there."
"What are the odds that Nosferatu will tell me what I want to know?" Jeanette asked Irene.

Irene closed the window and returned to her seat. "Hope for the best, but expect the worst, professor. Nosferatu may tell you something, but it's not about to release Myrie from its grip on her."
"Well, what the hell can I do, then?" Jeanette sounded desperate.
"If there's one thing you can do, you can trust Nosferatu," Irene said. "Nosferatu has no intentions to hurt your daughter, and may have given her those powers to protect her in case the future turns sour."
Jeanette's eyes narrowed. "And is the future going to turn sour?"

Irene lowered her head and prepared to fall asleep again. "Oh, definitely, but that's not what scares me. It's that I have no idea just how bad it's going to get."

Armored Bishoujo Says: "Gem, Impact can be with PATCA or working independently to breach the Corpsemire, just pick three characters to take with you and I'll create some information for them and post that story right below this'n. As for the two rigs, they are segregated by sex (men in one rig, ladies in the other although Heidi is driving the male's only rig right now). Communication between the guys and girls is still possible with the Inquiry Visors. Anyways, do some talkin' if you want to, please continue to use the previous thread for all the remaining intermission shenanigans, and this should be updated in just a few days."

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

Update (Nov 18): Moving things right along since there has been no response. Oh, and Menarker, Ray will be with the group but he'll be bringing his own little entourage as opposed to what he had before.

The two rigs finally came to a stop. "We are now stopped at the Corpsemire," Irene's voice sounded off as she was first outside. "Get some stretches and snacks or whatever and have a look around. But otherwise just hang out. I see someone who wants to talk to me."

As Ray exited the rig, Irene gave him a meaningful look. "Macca, remain in Arkment form as usual," she said quietly enough for only the three of them to hear. "And you're not allowed to attack that guy. He can defeat you even with Macca and killing him now would just create a military and political mess."
Ray resisted the urge to roll his eyes, barely. "I'm not that impulsive, though it's tempting. What's he doing here anyway, coming to see our group of heroes in person?"
"It's... complicated," Irene sounded unsure of herself. Just what kind of relationship did Irene and Vladier really have?
He stepped back, hand on Macca's hilt, relishing her warmth. They'd grown closer since that first practice battle with Irene, albeit only slightly. There was a bond here, but Macca, like so many others, was still devoted to Irene. Unusually, Ray didn't mind. The Arkments made him strangely philosophical, and he didn't want to poison his own bond with Macca, slight as it was, through jealousy. She helped him right now, and that sufficed. Perhaps one day she's help him slit a certain officer's throat, but that was far in the future.
For now Ray just stood to one side, observing the half-giant who called himself Burkmont. For such a large man, he was astoundingly light on his feet as he approached Irene. There was a strange force to his movements, light but relentless. He reminded Ray of a glacier. A heavily armed glacier. Suddenly, he was glad they weren't fighting the bastard quite yet.

Neither Ray nor any of the other agents needed to play the guessing game to figure out that they were looking at Vladier Burkmont. He was a mountain of a man with his entire body encapsulated under an armored green military coat adorned with his esteemed rank and several dozen ribbons and medals, a black helmet that looked like a cross between a Star Wars imperial trooper and a nazi supersoldier, and black armored leggings, pauldrons, and gauntlets that gave him a kind of post-apocalyptic cyberpunk feel. His weapons seemed to include both a set of mortar cannons mounted on the back and a tall, broad and black battle rod that probably contained many lethal secrets. He was at least seven feet tall and even greater than that in width.

Diamond Gunscissor, an automech in the Prideguard's Gabriel Force of lethal feminized robots, seemed to be his only escort, unless you counted the Republican Force cordon, but they were merely there to keep thrillseekers out of the Corpsemire. Matthias could see that Alice Hornsbury was standing with the guards, who gave him a kind wave and a gentle smile.
"Hold position here," some of the PATCA agents could hear Vladier say to Diamond Gunscissor. "Absolutely no hostilities."
"Orders received and understood," Diamond Gunscissor saluted across her chest with her right arm, then came to a rested position and remained still.
Vladier didn't so much walk as he did waddle up towards the assembled agents. "A private moment of your time, Miss Crosswald?"
"Of course," Irene said, then turned to the other agents. "Just hang out and please do not enter the Corpsemire yet. You won't know what to do and you'll just get lost."

"I've seen Vladier Burkmont before," Pizza observed to Ray. "He's really let himself go. There's a rumor on a lot of internet sites saying it's Rezonscape-related."
"So that's the Corpsemire, huh," Bianca mused to herself, looking at the massive line of gnarled trees and creepy fog. "We don't have anything like that back home."
Ray smiled at Pizza's remark, tilting his head as he watched Irene and Burkmont conversing. Between them, they could probably rule Honmyr, if they put their minds to it. Maybe more. Maybe they were already ruling. "I'm not sure if the internet is a reliable source of medical information of the General of the Prideguard, but I'm starting to feel like anything of importance has an 80% chance of being Rezonark-related."
"Indeed, and though Irene had never intended to do this to such a man, she has become the catalyst of his self-destructive path," Ray could hear Macca's cute and clear voice inside his mind. "Yet another great man who will be a sacrifice to secure a future for the Pokemon World, though all Antonio Shevenston did was dine on a bullet. Vladier has been suffering for more than twenty-seven years, and you only need to rip the flesh off to see all the wounds and scars he has had to quietly tolerate. I have heard that President Andricksen has a file that contains all the scandals and other things that Vladier was personally involved with and uses it to keep the big guy in check during his more lucid moments. Can you imagine how much bribe money and how many assassinations and illegal dealings were involved just to keep Vladier where he is despite what he does to himself and others? And that's not even the biggest twist."

The Corpsemire sure justified its own name even before they entered it. It gave off a serious 'planet of Dagobah' vibe with its misshapen trees and silvery fog creeping along the undisturbed and filthy water. Just inside the mire, there seemed to be a little ramp that lead to a system of floating bridges that snaked through the scattered trees and above the pools of putric liquid, disappearing into the mist.
"You can talk to me if you have any questions about the Corpsemire," Alice volunteered. "Once Crosswald returns, you'll all be cleared for entry. I don't think they'll take long. Otherwise, please just wait around. If you don't know how to approach Nosferatu's location in there, you'll end up hopelessly lost and probably be afflicted with that new status effect Shadow Pokemon are capable of."

Last edited by Astral Harmony; 12-27-2013 at 09:51 AM.
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Unread 11-18-2013, 03:47 PM   #2
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*A short while ago*

Renny peered out the window looking at the outdoor sights as they had gone off-road. The Rig that the male group had was spacious owing in part due to the significantly smaller amount of males in all the combined battle formation as opposed. However with only 2 Rigs total being employed this mission, he sympathized heavily with what he expected to be a sardines-in-tin packed ride for the ladies.

"Why are we segregated into genders this time? We didn't seem to have a problem with mixed groups in previous runs." He asked curiously into his IV which kept the two groups connected verbally.


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

As they nearly arrived, he could see that the atmosphere was downright spooky, dark and downright unpleasant, especially for one with a preference for the more friendly, light-hearted or delicate such as himself.

As the Rigs made their stops at the Corpsemire entrance, it turned out that there was already a group waiting for them. Based on intelligence gathering and from his reputation and the physical description that Rayleen gave a while back, Renny reasoned that the tall, obesely large and heavily decorated and armored commander was Vladier Burkmont. The fact that he was accompanied by one of the Gabriel Force served to support this guess. All the news and rumors of the things he had done ran through his head, filling him with intense disrespect for the the opposing leader who dressed in obviously evil clothing.

However, they were under a ceasefire, so Renny just took precautions and gathered Bianca, Milsha and Nyoka together, getting his group ready and paying attention to his surroundings, instantly distrustful of the circumstances. Had the Prideguard also received permission in limited capacity to enter as well? Why else would they be here?

He also looked curiously at the woman who left the Rig and joined with Impact. Wielding a large weaponized... pizza cutter? He didn't recognize her at all, nevermind in any of the dossier of any PATCA agent he have ever seen.

He then asked Alice as she lent some advice.
"New status condition? Can you elaborate more on that please?" He gave her a mostly undivided attention, although still paying attention to the immediate situation.

Last edited by Menarker; 11-18-2013 at 04:06 PM.
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Unread 11-18-2013, 06:51 PM   #3
Astral Harmony
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Before Arrival

"There was some electrical trouble with the air conditioning in this one this morning," Heidi admitted. "I think I fixed it since it seems to be working fine now which is good, but if it went out, you guys would be relying on windows and probably still be stinking up the place and thus the women were put into the other rig, probably not even knowing why. So tough it out, butter-cheeks."

...Butter-cheeks?

-----
After Arrival

"We call it Heartbreak," Alice said as she rubbed the back of her neck. "For lack of figuring out a better term. Completely ruins your will to fight. Debuffs your statistics all across the board. Shorts out your rage generation. Even makes healing less effective when it targets you. As long as you follow the rules and try not to play around in there, you may never have to experience it like one of our guys did. I don't even wanna know how he got a hold of alcohol way out here. The nearest convenience store is thirty minutes away."
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Unread 11-20-2013, 01:23 AM   #4
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"That's bad..." Renny said, clearly aware of how obvious of an understatement that was about the Heartbreak status. He then asked curiously as he glanced briefly at Gunscissor.

"Do you have any idea why Burkmont and Diamond Gunscissor are here at this time and place? This rather forbidden and out-of-the-way location doesn't seem like the sort of place one would go to without a very specific purpose, especially with only one other support agent. He'd either have to have permission to enter this place, or he somehow knew we were coming... And I doubt anyone at PATCA would be eager to send him an invite letting him know we were arriving here today. Or doess getting a permit from the President naturally means that everyone in command is going to know about it, to prevent abuse of some sort?"

Last edited by Menarker; 11-20-2013 at 01:27 AM.
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Unread 11-25-2013, 04:12 PM   #5
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Creating a Place-holder Section in case anyone wishes to have anything of theirs included before AB proceeds with the thread.
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Unread 11-28-2013, 04:07 PM   #6
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"It's probably one of those things that we're not supposed to know or think about," Alice shrugged. "Like maybe Burkmont wanted to see Irene for a talk and the president told him where she'd be at certain points so he picked this place. Or maybe Irene told him herself. Those two really have a complicated relationship. You'd think they're supposed to be enemies but sometimes they're all buddy-buddy."

Alice stroked her blonde hair. "I try not to think about it. My hair's not the right color for thought processing."

Irene returned with Vladier waddling in behind. "Everyone, prepare to roll out, which may or may not involve transforming in some capacity."
"We're done here," Vladier told Diamond Gunscissor. "Let's get back to Fainas."
"I beg your forgiveness, sir," Diamond Gunscissor objected. "But Chief Mechanic Prescott is still inside the Corpsemire."
"What?!" Vladier and Alice yelped at the same time.
"How the hell is she always able to do that?" Alice stroked her cheek. "Regardless, you and Diamond Gunscissor are not permitted to enter at this time, Supreme Com-"
"Diamond Gunscissor, you are to go with Crosswald and support her until Chief Engineer Prescott is safely extracted," Vladier ignored Alice.
"You're going to get me in a lot of trouble," Alice pointed out.
"Just tell the president that I'm responsible," Vladier shrugged. "I'm an asshole. Andricksen knows that."
Alice opened her mouth to protest, but then lowered her head with a sigh. "Why didn't I just become a cheerleader like my mother?"
"I thought your mother was a factory superintendant?" Vladier folded his arms.
"She told me her mom was an actress," Irene tilted her head. "So which is it?"
"All of them," Alice's shoulders drooped. "To this day, I think she still hasn't found something to turn into a career. Last I heard she was a pizza delivery girl."

Vladier turned to Diamond Gunscissor. "I want Alucard to report to our Mechanoknight factory in Fainas by 0800 two days from now. I think this time they've halted production for a reason other than the workers being incompetent."
"Orders recieved, Commander," Diamond Gunscissor saluted.
"Okay, slight change of plans, then," Irene said, turning around to face the other agents while Vladier left. "I'm sure we'll find her easily. She should be the only other person in the entire Corpsemire besides us, and if she entered through here, then we'll most likely come across her on our way to see Nosferatu."
Unbidden, Ray joined Irene at the head of the column by Irene's side, wary of Gunscissor looming above them. What he wanted to ask was [color=orange]"Why the hell does it look like you're friends with Burkmont?"[/color]
What he actually asked was "I take it your negotiations with the General were...productive?" He was all too curious what the two had been discussing between themselves. "And exactly how many times have you been here, m'dear?"
Irene tried for a little subtlety this time around. She looked at Pizza for about a minute before returning to business as usual. Wait, did Irene tell Pizza something? Maybe he should talk to her later.

"Well, this is certainly exciting, meeting the legendary Alucard Prescott and all," Jeanette asked. "I know her, though most brilliant minds do as hers is the most brilliant of all. She's quite eccentric and by 'eccentric' I of course mean 'loony as balls', unparalleled in all topics involving electricity, technology, mechanics, engineering, circuitry, computing, weapons systems, atomic particles... I could go on and on and on. Many of the highly advanced robots from the Gabriel Force to the RDPAs used throughout the republic owe their very existence to her."
"And to top it all off, she's only fifteen," Irene folded her arms. "People like her are believed to be born once only every one-thousand years. We'd better go find her before she tries to drink the water or something equally wacky."

Entering the Corpsemire was sort of like traveling through a portal that spanned thousands of miles. It seemed to change immediately from being warm and dry to cool and moist just by passing the first row of trees.
"Hold up," Irene called a halt. "We have to observe a few rituals before we make too much progress."
This is where it got weird. Irene took off her coat, weapons, and Pokeballs and set them on the bridge, then removed her boots. Finally, she sat down on the bridge and allowed her feet to slip into the murky water. "I always hate this part," Irene said. "The water's so cold. I hope one of them comes soon. I don't like having my feet in this shit."
"What's she doing?" Bianca asked Jeanette.
"When you wish to meet with Nosferatu or make any significant progress in the Corpsemire, you have to make it clear to the Shadow Pokemon that you're not here to do them any harm," Jeanette told her. "Kind of like ringing a doorbell to a house instead of breaking in. Just try not to freak out when one of the Shadow Pokemon answers the door. It's not going to be pretty."

They recieved their "greeter" after about two minutes. A shaped darkness swam through the murky waters.
"Miss Crosswald, in the water!" Bianca pointed.
"Relax," Irene said simply.
The dark indistinct shape disappeared for about a dozen seconds. Then something horrible rose from the muck. Bianca shrieked and hugged Renny into her chest.

It was a man who by no means should have been able to move. The corpse wore rusty, damaged, outdated imperial samurai armor and a large and very necessary chunk of its body mass was missing. It stared at Irene and the others through eye sockets illuminated by dark light. Irene continued to gently kick her legs through the swamp water. The corpse slowly began to advance.
"That's right," Irene said to the corpse. "I'm not going to hurt you. None of us are going to hurt you. We just want to meet with Nosferatu."
The light died in the corpse's eyes and the body fell back underneath the surface. The dark shape appeared again and hopped out of the water, onto the bridge.

As Irene pulled her feet out of the water and dried them off before dressing herself, the others got a good look at a Brakkr. It was small, no higher than one's knee. Its skin was a segmented exoskeleton that shined like volcanic glass. It had three claws insectoid legs and two heads, each with a single beautiful blue eye that glowed like a gemstone. "It usually takes longer," Irene said after having retrieved all of her gear. "They all probably know me by now."
She approached the Brakkr and kneeled down to stroke one of its heads. "You look healthy, little one. I bet you'll be a Shadolox before you know it."
The Brakkr nuzzled against Irene's hand, then yipped like a dog, turned around and ran away.
"Umm...should we follow it?" Bianca's voice quivered as she continued to asphyxiate Renny.
"I know where we're going," Irene said, motioning for Diamond Gunscissor to take point with her. "Follow me and keep your eyes alert. Don't forget, we also need to find Alucard."

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Unread 12-16-2013, 11:48 AM   #7
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Renny was instantly distrustful of the forced alliance with Gunscissor as he kept with his group, keeping Nyoka, Milsha and Bianca close by, although the group didn't go very far before Irene stopped them as she stripped off her heaviest equipment and her boots and waded a short distance into the fetid lake. He tried to relax as Irene reassured the group that the process was necessary and harmless, although when he briefly saw what was going to rise out of the water, he gritted his teeth with unease...

... well, only for a swift moment as his face was suddenly pressed directly to Bianca's large bosoms, squeezed between them as she as she panicked and used him as her make-shift comfort teddy. As he blushed feverishly, he was starting to worry about how she'd hold up this mission if this was the first reaction to something discomforting. Although at least her soft and warm tits were bound to be a a much more pleasant view than whatever was going to be found in Corpsemire.

However, he gently pried himself from Bianca as they got ready to move on. "I'm not going to be able to protect anyone when something attacks for real if you keep my head there. Don't worry, we'll look after each other."
When Irene mentioned having to find Alucard, he suggested.

"Irene, if you're regarded with a manner of respect or tolerance among these shadow pokemon, wouldn't it help if we got them to search for Alucard and direct us to her? It'd be in our mutual interest for them to aid us, if only so she isn't continuing to tresspass in their home. Although I suppose we'd need a visual aid or some possession of hers that they can sniff out. That is, unless you think they'd react to her presence in a less than receptive fashion if they find her before we do..."


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

*Space for a placeholder in case someone wanted to post something in this time-frame after AB posts.*
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Unread 12-18-2013, 10:21 AM   #8
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"Errr, right," Bianca said, face flushed with red and turning away.

When Irene mentioned having to find Alucard, Renny suggested.

"Irene, if you're regarded with a manner of respect or tolerance among these shadow pokemon, wouldn't it help if we got them to search for Alucard and direct us to her? It'd be in our mutual interest for them to aid us, if only so she isn't continuing to tresspass in their home. Although I suppose we'd need a visual aid or some possession of hers that they can sniff out. That is, unless you think they'd react to her presence in a less than receptive fashion if they find her before we do..."
"Oh, don't worry, we'll find her," Irene waved the thought away. "It's pretty hard to walk anywhere in the Corpsemire where no bridge has been constructed. Besides, I try not to disturb the Shadow Pokemon more than necessary whenever I have to come here. This whole place is evolving, not just the Pokemon."

"Miss Crosswald, what's that thing?" Bianca pointed.
"Mmm?" Irene glanced towards a nearby tree. There was a giant, wicked polished metal hook latched onto it. "Watch."

Irene hopped in place and, a moment later, the hook loosened on the tree, disconnected, and then was yanked away violently, disappearing into the fog.
"Huh. That's new," Pizza observed.
"That's Nosferatu," Irene turned to the others. "Those hooks can go a long way, so we've still got a while before we meet him directly, but he uses those hooks to sense unfamiliar residents from a good distance away. When I jumped, it created a ripple in the water that brushed up against the tree. Nosferatu can tell the difference between a Shadow Pokemon disturbing the area and... well, something that isn't a Shadow Pokemon. Though if Alucard really is here, then Nosferatu already knows he's got visitors."
"Is that her?" Calisto walked up and gestured ahead.
Irene looked. "Yep, that's her jailbait ass. What the hell is she doing?"

Alucard was half on the bridge and half over the side, apparently reaching into a shallow part of the putrid water as though scavenging for something.
"Don't you think that's a little dangerous there, Alucard?" Irene asked the thickly-dressed girl.
"Don't worry, I almost got it," Alucard said, and then she had it. When she pulled her hands out of the muck and stood up, she had a mud-encrusted crystal of some kind that glowed with an unsettling dark violet aura.

Alucard Prescott, a child prodigy, pretty much defined jailbait perfectly. She had developed into a full blown woman with a sexy body years before she would be legally allowed to have shameful things done to it.
Fortunately, she had another characteristic that drew their attention from any dark thoughts: an honest to goodness derpface. Her left eye looked left, her right eye looked right, and her smile was decidedly feline in nature. It was cute and funny at the same time.
"Chief Engineer Prescott, you are ordered by Supreme Commander Burkmont to report to the Fainas Metropolis Mechanoknight factory at 0800 hours two days from now," Diamond Gunscissor said in monotone, stepping forward.
Alucard's crooked eyes furrowed in thought. "Must be the Lamiaknights* again," she shrugged. "Sometimes it takes a special talent to be able to do this kind of thing that no amount of training can overcome. 'Two days from now' is pretty damn generous of him, though. I guess he knows I work by my own hours."

Then Alucard got a look at Irene and the rest of her entourage. "Hey there, Megu-chan. You off to go see the giant enemy crab?"
"Yes, we are," Jeanette spoke for Irene. "And we may attempt to attack its weak spot for massive damage."
"So what's that in your hand there?" Irene asked Alucard.
Alucard's kitty-smile widened and she presented the dark crystal. "Glad y'asked. Might I have the honor to present the first ever discovered piece of umbralith?"
"Umbralith?"
"I just got it so I haven't run any tests of it besides a simple Visor scan, but I would believe that if you shaped this into a workable form, you'd have a Shadow Evolith."
"That's a tiny Shadow Evolith, then," Melanie mused.
"Yeah, seems more like an action figure or a remote controlled car than a weapon," Lucian folded his arms.
"That's true," Alucard's shoulders slumped a little. "Normal Evoliths simply require the correct amount of evolite and an evolutionary stone to provide the necessary power to fuel its motive abilities and attack moves. But there are no Shadow type evolutionary stones, at least not from what science has learned so far. My guess is that umbralith forms when evolite is in the presence of Shadow Pokemon for a time, but Shadow Pokemon only exist here and this place has almost no evolite at all compared to what you can unearth way out west. Still, this might offer possibilities of some kind."
"Breaking into a new line of research," Irene asked the girl. "Your studies and genius focuses more on technology, not this kind of thing."

"I can't help it," Alucard put the raw umbralith away. "My brain just won't stop and let me relax. I always have to be learning something new."
Then she turned to Diamond Gunscissor. "Dia-chan, I guess I'm done here. Shall we go back to Fainas?"

Now that Diamond Gunscissor and Alucard were on their way back to Fainas, Irene resumed their forward progress. Ray watched Alucard go with some regret. Vladier had been wise to send Gunscissor with them, Ray would have been only too glad to detain Alucard for a few hours. Or days. That kind of brain was valuable, and he would've loved to pick it. Alas, the opportunity had passed, for now. He'd work to arrange another one later on. For now, he looked ahead. This expedition held promise.

They must have been getting closer because they were encountering Shadow Pokemon in larger numbers. Mostly Brakkr but they did also spot a Shadolox or two. The creatures were large, sort of built like skinny gorillas, and waded through the cold, ever darkening waters with no notable purpose whatsoever.

And that's when they finally encountered Nosferatu. The legendary Shadow Pokemon was indeed a giant crab, but there was obviously a lot more to it. Black and shiny like obsidian and adorned with twisted demonic silver skulls that reflected like mirrors, Nosferatu towered above the assembled PATCA agents with no less than three pairs of massive ripping pincers. Ethereal blue flames fumed out of anywhere the exoskeleton didn't cover, out of the dripping maw, and from the decorative skulls themselves. And for some odd reason, there were three large, barbed scorpion tails protruding from the back. It was a sight both majestic and terrible. Judging by the number of large chains that were connected to holes in Nosferatu's shell, there were about a dozen hooks in all connected to places throughout the Corpsemire. Nosferatu opened its mandibles wide to present one final oddity: a sky-blue cats eye sunk deep within the crab's mouth, yet glowing so that it was clearly visible to all.

"That's the gateway that leads to the Hungry World," Shizuka said, pointing to a large, black hole underneath Nosferatu's great form. "I guess Nosferatu-san is keeping it closely watched?"
Rulag was also there, but in her more human form, that of a raven-haired tempress in leather of both red and black. She was looking at them, but made no effort to address the arrivals or move from her spot, leaning against one of the trees.
They had finally reached what one might consider to be solid ground here where the bridges finally ended, and Jeanette was the first to break the ice.
"I assume you speak for Nosferatu?" The professor asked Rulag.
"Nosferatu can speak for himself," Rulag growled. "I'm not his goddamned secretary."
"So harsh, dear Rulag," Nosferatu's deep and manly voice seemed to echo throughout the Corpsemire, hitting your ears from everywhere at once. "Please forgive her, Professor Ricewood. She is rather fond of fighting, and was disappointed at not being to continue the battle that you had with Moera not long ago. But I digress. To what do I owe this pleasure?"

"He seems nice," Lucian observed to Hyacinth. "I was expecting a real 'bow before me, mortals' kind of uberbeing, given his appearance."
"We're mostly just passing through," Irene told Nosferatu.
"'Mostly', my ass," Jeanette countered, presenting Myrie to Nosferatu. "You will remove your influence from my daughter, and know before you answer that this is not up for negotiation."
"And a mighty fine day to you as well, Professor," Nosferatu rolled his one eye. "Your daughter is under your care again, is she not? Can you not simply be satisfied with that?"

Jeanette's eyes narrowed. Nosferatu raised one of its forward pincers as though to ward off an impending blow. "Please, good lady, enough with the furrowing of the brow. Your face still possesses the beauty of a young woman despite being almost thirty-seven years old. Do not waste it on expressing needless anger. But do tell me something: do you truely believe that you can be there to protect your precious daughter at all times?"
"Get to the fucking point," Jeanette spat.
"It's getting to be a dangerous and unforgiving world out there, Jeanette," Rulag said. "I'm sure you would rather want Myrie to be able to defend herself whenever you can't be with her should the need arise."
"And who asked you?!" Jeanette snapped.
"My name is Rulag, in case you hadn't heard it. I am an... instructor for those who are brought into the fold."
"This is complete madness!" Jeanette shouted, then turned to Irene. "Irene, say something!"

Irene was silent. Jeanette's mouth hung open a bit. "You can't possibly tell me you agree with this!"
"Look around you, Professor," Irene said, gesturing across the Corpsemire. "I wouldn't be too surprised if all of Honmyr one day grows to resemble this place. There are still so many Ruin Generals and Moeni is still running around. And the Third Successionary War isn't a matter of 'if', it's a matter of 'when'. I'm not saying that what Nosferatu did to little Myrie was the best idea or even a good one at all. I just want to say that regardless of his reasons, I trust Nosferatu. He didn't do what he has done out of malice and nothing we say or do here is going to make your daughter normal again. At least not right now."
Jeanette was silent for a moment, then released a really big sigh. "You know what, Irene? Sometimes I really fucking hate you."
"Would you like me to be under your desk one day to make it up to you?"
"Oh shut up, you crazy bitch."

-----

New Terminology: Lamiaknight ~ The latest variant of Mechanoknights that employs a long, thick mechanical tail for a lower body. Lamiaknights are true amphibious machines, able to move across all types of terrain and even underwater, though they aren't the fastest mobile automechs. Lamiaknights can also attack with their powerful tails, allowing them to effectively attack from all four sides.

Last edited by Astral Harmony; 12-27-2013 at 10:06 AM.
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Unread 12-19-2013, 06:09 AM   #9
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Donovan was quiet for most the trip there, using the Inquiry Visor for a wikipedia-style information binge whenever an unfamiliar term came up on the comm line. But when the group arrived at the Hungry World portal and met Nosferatu he remembered what Impact said about leads in his past. After most of the important conversation was out of the way he approached the shadow pokemon, eyeing him suspiciously as he leaned against a tree. "So you're the king Shadow Pokemon? I've heard you've had connections to Faynoc, do you remember anything about his work, like Red Zephyr or Rage technology outside of the Rezonscape?"
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Unread 12-19-2013, 10:28 AM   #10
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"So you're the king Shadow Pokemon? I've heard you've had connections to Faynoc, do you remember anything about his work, like Red Zephyr or Rage technology outside of the Rezonscape?"

"Reynold Faynoc was obsessed with utilizing any possible means of technological and scientific breakthroughs to commense the next great ascension of human evolution," Nosferatu told Donovan. "Regardless of whatever boundaries one might have to cross to achieve such a lofty goal, the madman believed that any amount of sacrifice was entirely worth it. The vast majority of experiments he had conducted that I am aware of involved the DNA of legendary Pokemon and an attempt to mass produce those mysterious Chroma Fragments, something that was unearthed in relatively small amounts during the early years of exploration that followed the end of the First Successionary War, back when I did not even exist. What he had discovered from analyzing these odd crystal fragments over the many years was that they could function as a miniature Rezonscape. A Rage battery, if you would, which can allow one to gain and utilize the powers of Rage when not in the influence of the Rezonscape directly. I have not heard of anything specific from him or any of his cultist cohorts, but one might be able to gain the benefits of Rage through the fragments without any risk of falling prey to the mental degradation that eventually leads to the Madsoldier condition."
"I would wager it's because of the epicenter deep underground," Irene folded her arms. "It's not just the Rezonscape's source. It has a mind of its own. But the Chroma Fragments aren't sentient... or at least they don't seem to be."

"Where do they come from?" Calisto stroked her chin.
"As I had just said before, underground," Nosferatu shrugged with four of its large pincers. "Other than that, I cannot say, though logic would dictate that greater concentrations of the crystal fragments would be encountered were one to dig deeper and deeper."
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