Hidden 7 days ago 7 days ago Post by Arista
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Arista The Dork

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The day of...

She awakes to the smell of cooking food filling her nose.

As well as a familiar weight against her stomach.

For a long moment it takes Kira's half-asleep brain to register why that's so odd, until realization hits and she's sitting bolt upright. "Oh, shit!" She shouts before scrambling to the edge of her bed, not even noticing how the weight along her stomach had jumped off seconds before she sat up. Though her mind is awake and whirling with thoughts, her body is slowly waking up. Her movements are jerky as she races to her already prepared clothes, nearly tripping over her recently evolved Queen who's asleep on the rug in the center of her room in her haste.

"Ki? You awake?" Comes a muffled voice from behind her door, clicking her tongue Kira focuses on switching her pajamas for actual clothes. There's silence for a few moments, only the familiar muffled sound of music filling the air. Until a knock breaks it, Kira huffs out a breath just as she finishes buttoning her pants.

"Go away, Chris!" She says in the direction of her door, already turned away to head into her bathroom. Her brown hair is a mess of curls when she looks in the mirror, she rolls her brown eyes before picking up her toothbrush. Five minutes later she's stepping out with her hair combed and her hat atop her head, smile wide on her lips. She pauses when she finds two familiar figures waitingon the rug in the middle of her room, both awake and patient. Queen is swaying and her tail is tapping along the fabric almost rhythmically, Astral is licking his front paws slowly. "You two ready? We have to hurry or we'll be late." She murmurs as she moves closer, hands reaching to pet them both. She's just reaching for her bag when her door opens, her elder brother stands just within the doorframe with a book in hand.

"Come on." Is all he says, before turning away. His partner Spook -a Trevenant- waves a clawed hand at her before following Chris, Kira snorts and follows both down. The smell is heavenly and makes her stomach growl, which draws a the attention of her mother.

"You need to hurry, good morning, sweet." Is her greeting with a smile, before she gestures to the plates on the table. A glance at the clock is enough to have her cursing softly and sitting down, her mother already setting bowls out for the three Pokémon to eat from. Her father must be in the nursery because he doesn't join them, his partner Rose -an Aromatisse- wanders in just as she's finishing. Handing her mother her plate she hugs her before repeating the sameto Chris, who holds her tight with a paton her head. Spook and Rose press in close to her before doing the same to Queen and Astral, before stepping back. Just as she reaching for Queen's Pokeball, the sound of a door opening has her head turning, her father has an egg in his hands and a Helioptile on his shoulder.

"Ready, Kira? We'll miss you." He replies softly, smile on his lips even as he opens his arms. Kira steps into them easily and closes her eyes, before pulling away reluctantly.

"I'll call when I can, I love you!" She shouts over her shoulder, recalling Queen with an apologetic look before racing out the front door. Astral is running right beside her, ears flopping in the wind. As the sun above warms her skin, she can't nelp but grin widely.

What a great day for this trip.

@c3p-0h
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Hidden 7 days ago Post by c3p-0h
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c3p-0h unending foolery

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The night before...

A pair of headphones soars through the air, clattering against the far wall of the tiny dining room.

"Bitch!" The cry is sharp as a young woman straightens from her ducked position, hands grasping for the nearest projectile. She finds an open textbook and hurls it at her twin sister. Remi dives behind the high back of a chair as the book smacks against the wall. Her Pikachu, Tack, lets out an angry chirp before jumping off of Remi's shoulder and onto the table. Tack charges at Kara, electricity sparking from the pouches on its cheeks. Just as he pounces though, an unseen force pushes him back, skidding across the table until he flies off the edge with a yelp. Kara's Meowstic holds Tack against the wall with its psychic abilities, its eyes glowing blue. Kara dashes around the table. Remi's eyes widen and she scrambles to the other side. The sisters stare each other down, anger heating the air between them.

Remi's eyes flick to look over Kara's shoulder, towards the door, and she straightens with a start.

"Dad," she says in a guilty voice. Kara's eyes widens and she snaps her head around to look behind her.

In a smooth motion, Remi jumps over the table to tackle Kara to the ground. The two wrestle there, pulling and scratching, as their Pokémon snipe at each other.

"You're just bitter you weren't chosen!" Remi grits out as she tries to push her sister's face into the floor.

"I'm bitter you cheated!" Kara spat. She shoves her elbow into Remi's gut with a grunt. Remi flinches away, giving the opportunity Kara needed to switch their positions. The next thing she knows, Remi is flat on the ground, Kara sitting on top of her and pulling at her hair. "Everyone knows, Remi! Like you would ever be good enough to -"

In the back of Remi's mind, she registers the sound of the door opening.

In the next moment there's a flash of red, and thick vines are tearing the girls away from each other.

"One day!" their father booms. Remi and Kara are still glaring at each other, chests heaving. "You two have one last day together! You can't go a day without trying to kill each other?"

"It's been like three days since we've tried to kill each other," Remi says. "We're past due."

"Remi." Their father stands still for a moment. Then he sighs, rubbing his hand over his face. His Tangrowth drops them. Remi stumbles as she lands off balance, but manages to catch herself. They stand there in a swelling silence, until inevitably...

"She started it."

"Liar!"

"Enough!" their father tries to shout over the re-escalating fight. Remi and Kara try to lunge at each other again, only for the Tangrowth to snatch them up. They wriggle in the air, trying to get at each other.

"She doesn't deserve to go!"

"Girls -"

"I earned my spot, Kara, it's not my fault you didn't make the cut!"

"Remi," their father tries to cut in again, but Remi can't hear him anymore.

"I'm so sick of you always acting like you're better than me! But you and everyone else at that stupid school can hang, because I qualified on my own! Because I'm more than good enough. And I don't need to buy some stupid little dragon to show off to everyone and prove how special I am -"

Kara's eyes widen as she latches onto a new plan of attack. "You've always been jealous of me! You need my clothes, my school - now poor little Remi's sad she doesn't have a dragon of her own?" Kara stops struggling in the air to give her sister a mocking smile. "You couldn't handle it. It'd be too hard, and you'd get bored, and you'd give up like you always do!"

"Thunder shock!"

"Psybeam!"

"That's it!" The Tangrowth drops the girls to the ground, vines shooting out to block the attacks midair. Their father fumes. "Both of you, to your rooms!" he thunders. His eyes shoot to Remi and she can't help but flinch away. "You're not going."

Remi stares at him, stunned. "...What?"

He doesn't repeat himself. "It doesn't matter how good you are. You don't deserve to go." Out of the corner of her eye, Remi sees Kara start to smirk. Remi can feel the burn of tears building behind her eyes. "You need to grow up." His eyes cut to Kara. Remi wants to feel satisfied when she sees her twin flinch, but she's too numb. "Both of you. Go to your rooms." He looks back to Remi. "Unpack."

He pulls out his Tangrowth's Pokeball. There's another flash of red as the Pokémon disappears. Then, without looking at either of his daughters, he marches out of the room. Remi and Kara don't move as they listen to his heavy steps down the hall to his bedroom. They hear his door slam shut.




Remi's eyes are puffy and red as she lays on her bed, Tack curled against her. It's well past midnight. Shame swirls in the pit of her stomach. She's so stupid. She'd been ecstatic when she'd found out that she'd qualified. And proud. That Kara hadn't had been icing on the cake. But then she'd had to go and pick a fight...

Remi groans, bringing the heels of her palms to press into her eyes. Tack nuzzles closer into her side.

I was so close to getting out of here...

The night replays again and again in her mind. The fight with Kara. The anger she'd felt. Her father's decision.

The worst part would be when school started on Monday and all her classmates found out she hadn't gone on the trip to Alola. They'd all stare and whisper, and think that every rumor they'd heard about her cheating had been true. Kara would only confirm it to them. She can see it in her mind's eye, her twin sister smirking at her from across the hall as she whisper's into a friend's ear. That stupid little dragon that can't even do anything yet would be floating over her shoulder.

Remi grits her teeth, another tear flowing down her cheek to drip onto the mattress of her bed.

Idiot.

Remi's hands drop from her eyes to land heavily on the mattress. Remi stares up at her ceiling.

Then she sits up so fast that Tack startles awake beside her. Still sniffling, Remi swings her legs over the side of the bed and forces herself to stand. Tack looks up to her, a question in his eyes.

"We're going to Alola." Then Remi is a flurry of motion, hurrying to stuff her bag full of rumpled clothes that she'd only just put away. Tack darts around the room, grabbing things that he knows she'll need, and then the bag is zipped, Tack is on her shoulder, and Remi is out the door.

She creeps down the hallway past her father's room... then she pauses at Kara's door. Her sister's words echo through her head.

Then Remi grabs the doorknob and carefully opens Kara's door. Her eyes scan the room. Remi tiptoes her way to the immaculately organized desk, Tack giving a confused chirp in her ear. Remi hesitates. Then she snatches up the Luxury Ball on the desk. She freezes and looks to see Kara still sleeping soundly, her Meowstic curled at the foot of her bed.

Before she can second guess herself, Remi creeps back out of Kara's room, and into the night.




Remi is drifting off to sleep in the airport's waiting area when the incessant buzzing of her phohne finally wakes her up. She opens bleary eyes to see it's already well into the morning. Then she startles awake, eyes going wide. She hears Tack chirping in surprise at his second rude awakening.

Tell me I didn't sleep through it!

Remi clambers for her phone. Then she sees the time and breathes a sigh of relief. She's only 15 minutes late, which, really, the chaperone probably expected. She pauses though when she sees a barage of texts, missed calls, and voicemails from her father and Kara. Remi slips the phone back in her pocket. Looking down at Tack, she rubs down his fur.

"Time to go," she whispers. She helps Tack climb up to her shoulder and then they head to the designated meeting spot.

The small group isn't hard to find. The chaperone gives her a look at being late, but none of her classmates acknowledge her more than a passing glance. She thinks she sees one kid raise an eyebrow at her. Whatever.

One stupid plane ride, and then I'm on my own. A giddy smile finds its way to her lips at the thought. Her phone buzzes again in her pocket. Remi hesitates. Then she steels herself. She pulls her phone out to look down at the cluttered screen.

Her father just texted her, but she can't bring herself to hear what he has to say, yet. Instead, she goes to her sister's text messages and scrolls down to the most recent ones.

Sis 7:41 AM
REMI

Sis 7:41 AM
YOU TOOK IT????

Sis 7:41 AM
THIS BETTER BE A JOKE

Sis 7:42 AM
REMI!!!!!!

Sis 7:42 AM
YOUR DEAD


Remi smirks down at the texts, imagining the tantrum Kara must be throwing. She types a reply.

You 8:19 AM
*you're


Immediately a thought bubble pops on the screen, but before Kara can finish typing, Remi turns off her phone.

"Whoops, sorry, no devices on the plane," Remi hums to herself. Putting her phone away, she looks up again at their little group. Electricity thrums through her and Remi gives a little bounce on her toes. She looks to the chaperone, eager for them to finally go.

I'm doing this. I earned it.

Remi can't stop the small, excited smile on her face.

I'm going to kick so much ass.
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Hidden 6 days ago 6 days ago Post by Arista
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Arista The Dork

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Her excitement had dimmed within the first few moments that she'd stepped into the large buidling, her dislike of planes rearing it's head. Astral is a familiar presence on her shoulder as she moves toward where one of a small group waits, slightly familiar faces. These trips are required to have an adult with them and it's a toss up between parents and teachers. As she draws closer she can feel eyes on her and it makes her frown, gloved hands flexing at her sides. Chris had told her that these trips weren't all for fun, and that despite having classmates with you didn't meant they'd all be nice.

"Kira! Finally!" A voice chirps out just when she can feel her irritation rising, her head turning away to find a familiar form running at her. Her childhood best friend Sandra slammed into her with an excited squeal, squeezing around Kira's waist. What's funny is her friend is a foot shorter then her and has an almost doll-like appearance, her strength surprises others.

"I literally saw you last night at dinner. Let go." She mutters with a wince, spitting out blonde hair from her mouth. Instead of letting go Sandra grips her tighter, which has Kira hissing lightly. A soft chirp draws her attention behind her friend, to another familiar figure. Sandea's Kirlia is watching them closely, slender feet tapping along the marble floor. Astral chirps and jumps down from her shoulder, tail wagging as he begins to mirror the tempo Kirlia has going.

"Why is our flight so late? I wanna go nooooowwwww~" Sandra whines out dramatically, face nuzzling against Kira's stomach. Before Kira can reply someone is Xiaoping their hands from behind them, and a smile tugs her lips up at who she sees is their chaperone. Ms. Simone is one of her favorite teachers because she doesn't have them just reading books, she's let's them battle in class sometimes.

"Almost everyone's here, just waiting on a few more stragglers. Let me see your ID's so that I can hand out your tickets." Her tone is gentle and a smile plays along her lips, her partner a Gogoat stamps it's foot once before standing still.

Once their given their tickets all they can do is wait, conversation is mostly nonexistent which isn't all bad Kira guesses. She's just asked Sandra whar ti,e it was on her phone when the last few kids arrive, not that she really cares if she's being honest.

She blinks when she pulls out her own phone, noting the barrage of texts from her brother. He must've already had his coffee which flips the switch from grumpy to talkative, curious she taps her screen to see what he's sent.

Chris -Bro- 8:00 AM
Don't trip

Chris -Bro- 8:03 AM
I was kidding, did you make it????

Chris -Bro- 8:07 AM
Image Sent

Chris -Bro- 8:09 AM
Image Sent

Chris -Bro- 8:10 AM
KKKKKKIIIIIIIRRRRRRRRAAAAAAAAAAA


You 8:11 AM
Whoops, sorry forgot I had my phone on silent

You 8:11AM
I didn't fall. And yes I made i

You 8:12AM
Image Sent

You 8:13AM
Congrats on the baby Litwick! I hope the trainer and you take good care of them! Gotta go, security check time.
😰😰


She's just locking her phone with the intent of putting it away, when it vibrates one more time. Curious despite her growing unease, she glances down at her screen as Ms. Simone leads them towards their gate.

Chris -Bro- 8:15AM
RUDE

Chris -Bro- 8:16AM
💪💪💜💜


It makes her snort a soft laugh which has Sandra immediately crowding into her space. Thankfully before her hyper friend can use her phone to spam Chris whatever she found online about just about anything, Ms. Simone calls for their attention. Soon they're all settled into their rather stylish seats after passing through security and the captain is speaking. The good thing about their school owning get own planes is that they don't have to deal with random as strangers. And the flight is straight instead of dealing with layovers, they'll be cutting down a twenty-four hour flight down to fifteen.

Kira swallows as the hears the engines rumble to life, Astral settled comfortably in her lap. Her hands grip the sides of her seat so hard her fingers begin to cramp, the music she'd picked to distract her doing nothing to help. She's never been a fan of planes, thankfully take off is over and they even out. From there a low rumble of conversations fills the air, and slowly Kira feels herself relaxing. The flight will be long and no doubt the patience of both humans and Pokémon will be tested. Joy.



She can't feel her ass, or her legs.

Everyone is slow to get off the plane, even though they'd landed five minutes ago. She's expecting a bright sun above to blind her as she steps out, but instead she's met with a sea of stars. The air smells of salt as she inhales slowly, stretching her limbs out as best she can while walking.

"Come on, let's go check in and get settled for the night. Check your phones for a text I'll be sending out that'll tell you where we're, we meeting in the morning." Ms. Simone sounds just as tired as they all feel, Astral chirps softly in her ear before nuzzling against her skin.

"Dinner...breakfast...? Food first and then bed..." When murmurs around a yawn, guilt swirling in her chest as she remembers Queen had spent far too long within her Pokeball.

She doesn't notice the device Ms. Simone holds isn't her usual phone, or how restless she gets as they move towards the hotel. Kira doesn't even question how she has their numbers to text them, she's tired and hungry and wants so spend some time with her Pokémon.

"Kiiirrraaaa~" Sandra whines out, collapsing against her even as they continue to walk. She stumbles a bit because Sandra may be small but she's heavy, and they both have rolling suitcases which almost trip them up.

"No."

"Come on!"

"I love you, Sandra. I love you so hard platonicly but no."

"Kiiiiirrrraaaaa?"

"God dammit, fine!" She hisses out with a narrowing of her eyes, her usual cheer is buried beneath hunger and exhaustion. Sandra takes it in stride, taking her hand and taking off in a dash. Agreeing to be temporary roommates is both a blessing and a curse, because they were told from the start that roommates were already picked beforehand. Once they reach the lobby of the hotel Ms. Simone begins calling out nanes and roI'm numbers, two per each room. She's starting to drift off when she hears Sandra being paired with another girl, the pout that's aimed at her makes her snort.

"And lastly, Miss Kira and Miss Remi. Room 316." And for a long moment Kira doesn't move, and then she's being handed a key. They're told Ms. Simone's room number and that they have a whole floor to their school, and then they're being ushered to their rooms. Her legs feel like lead as she's left staring at a wooden door, Astral pacing around her feet impatiently.

Whoever this Remi chick is she better not be loud, or heads will roll. Is her irritated though as she slips her key card along the reader, pushing open the door with it clicks. The room is massive she notes tiredly, with its own kitchen and twin beds separated by a dark-tinted glass door. Letting the door close behind her Kira moves forward, intent on the left bed which is closest to the window, her tired eyes take on the large living room with a blink before she's flopping on her bed. Astral has wandered off somewhere but she isn't concerned, what little energy she has fades as she lays still with her face buried against soft sheets. She must doze off because a weight landing on her back has her jerking, only to huff when she realizes it's Astral. "Food, I know. Water to no doubt. Alright off." She murmurs before pushing herself up, before turning to head for the kitchen. She let's Queen out once she has both food and water ready, petting along both her Pokémon's sides in silent apology as they eat and drink. As she leaves them be she moves towards the refrigerator, phone in hand as she opens the door. Finding a plate of pasta she grabs a fork and seats herself in the couch, unlocking her phone and opening her camera app. She takes pictures of them eating before focusing solely on her meal, when all three of them are done Kira sets about cleaning up their dishes. The bowls she brought with her as set beside her bed, while her used plate is washed and left to dry. Then she's sitting down heavily on the couch with a sigh, tipping sideways until she's no longer upright. Her phone feels heavy but she holds on, opening up her messages she begins to type. Relaxing when she feels Astral settle on her stomach, Queen curling up beside them with her head tucked beneath her gold-red tail.

Chris -Bro- 2:45PM
Let me know when you land. 😊😊

Chris -Bro- 7:40PM
Miss you~ Night 😴😴

You 10:00PM
Image Sent

You 10:00PM
Image Sent

You 10:00PM
Image Sent

You 10:00PM
Image Sent

You 10:02PM
😴😴😴😴😴😴😴


And before she knows it. She's fast asleep.
Hidden 6 days ago 6 days ago Post by c3p-0h
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c3p-0h unending foolery

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The flight is long. And boring. Remi spends the first half of it practically vibrating in her seat, still buzzing from excitement. She sits at the back of the plane, away from her classmates. Not like any of them like her, anyway. Tack feeds off her energy, chittering away as he crawls over the seats around her, sniffing at her, the plane, the window. Sometimes Remi thinks she can see tiny sparks flashing at his cheeks. Remi shares conspiratorial smiles with him.

She clutches the Luxury Ball in her hand, thumb moving over the smooth metal, warmed by her skin. She doesn't dare let the stolen dragon out though. Only one or two of Kara's friends qualified for this trip (turns out they're all only half as talented as they act, imagine that) and Kara only just purchased the Pokémon the other day after a particularly potent tantrum, so she likely hadn't been able to show it off to anyone yet... but Remi doesn't want to take her chances. Not until her feet are on Alolan soil, at least.

Remi pulls out her phone (ignoring the notification numbers next to the phone and text message apps) and swipes to see her digital trainer card. She taps on the button labeled Registered Pokémon.

  • Pikachu - "Tack"
  • Dreepy

Remi grins down at the small letters. Kara hadn't even bothered to register it. The first thing Remi had done when she made it to the airport was head to their PokéCenter to register the Dreepy as legally hers.

No take-backs, she thinks, picturing her sister's enraged face. Remi doesn't even really know what a Dreepy is. But this one's hers now.




Remi is practically sleep walking at the back of the pack of students as they first deboard the plane. She'd managed to sleep on and off through the last half of the flight, but even plush, private jet seats were uncomfortable to sleep in for hours on end. The group makes their way to the hotel on the beach lining Hau`oli City on Melemele Island. A breeze drifts through them. It smells like salt. And flowers. Remi can't help the drowsy delight that thrums through her.

Alola. She made it. She looks up to see the stars cutting across the sky, not a cloud to be seen. Her smile grows. Tack rubs his furry cheek against her face, chirping happily. Remi scratches him between his ears.

She's too excited to do more than follow behind her chattering classmates, taking in the sights and smells of this new region. Hau`oli is bright and colorful at night - Remi isn't sure what she expected a tropical city to look like. It's cheerful, music from different shops or street musicians echo through the streets, playing against the backdrop of gently crashing waves. Something sweet and sugary wafts through the air, making her mouth water. Remi files it away in the back of her mind, determined to find it later.

The hotel they're staying in is grand and bright, with a great chandelier hanging from the ceiling. Remi barely listens as Ms. Simone hands out instructions - she's too busy slowly spinning in place, looking at the ornate decorations. Slow, dreamy Alolan music plays through the building.

"Miss Remi." Remi's eyes snap up to see Ms. Simone looking at her patiently. She's missed something. Her classmates are already wandering off, towards the elevators. "A word?" And just like that, the dream is over. Adrenaline spikes through Remi's body.

She knows. Dad called. I'm expelled. They're gonna send me back to Galar and Dad will kick me out and stupid Kara's gonna feel so smug, that b-

"Your father called the school." Remi thinks she might throw up. "It seems you didn't leave your family on the best of terms." Understatement. Ms. Simone gives Remi a gentle smile, almost indulgent. It throws Remi off. "I had a long conversation with the dean. Talked him down a bit." The smile turns the slightest bit conspiratorial. Remi raises a confused eyebrow. "Remi, you are one of our most promising students. And you've made it this far. The permission forms have already been signed, the tuition payments made, and as for your sister's Dreepy..." Remi can't help but gulp. The weight of the Luxury Ball is heavy in her jacket pocket. "It's registered to you. Perhaps Miss Kara could consider it an early birthday gift." Remi blinks at her teacher, mind racing to process what she's saying.

"So..." Her lips slowly turn up into a hesitant, disbelieving smile. "I can stay?"

Ms. Simone smiles at her and puts a hand on Remi's shoulder. Relief rockets through her body. The teacher presses a room key into Remi's hand, then pauses. She gives Remi a sober look.

"But Remi... I would consider myself on a tight leash."

Remi's smile drops immediately. She shakes her head up and down in a vigorous nod.

Ms. Simone gives one last smile and reaches up to squeeze Remi's shoulder. "Get some sleep. Big day tomorrow." With that, Ms. Simone leave Remi alone in the lobby. Remi doesn't notice that her teacher doesn't head to the elevator, instead taking a turn to walk deeper into the hotel. No, Remi is too focused on the Luxury Ball in her hand. She watches the way the golden light of the chandelier glistens off its metal surface.

Suddenly Remi isn't tired anymore. She knows she should be - but the fact is muted somehow, pushed aside with the newness of Alola. She can stay.

She gets to stay!

Remi can't fight the excited squeal that escapes her as she jumps in the air. She immediately stills herself as she catches the bewildered looks of the hotel workers. But still, she grins. In the next moment, Remi leaves the hotel, striding out into the Alolan night. She's too wired now to rest. She needs to explore.




Hau`oli is big, but not as big as Hammerlocke. It doesn't have the same cramped, claustrophobic feel, with imperial castle walls on every side. Hau`oli is open and airy, with wide roads and smiling tourists, the ocean air welcoming all to lay down their worries. A wall of graffiti catches her eye - some sort of stylized flame design carelessly thrown over a skull. Remi ponders it for a moment. Dueling artists?

That same, sugary sweet smell catches her attention. Remi and Tack both turn their noses to the air, sniffing.

"New priority," Remi says, catching Tack's eye. "Whatever that is." Not waiting for further instruction, Tack leaps from Remi's shoulder. He pauses to sniff the air again. Then he takes off down the street. Remi sprints after him, laughing, shoes clapping along the pavement.

Remi's out of breath when Tack finally stops in front of a small pink shop with a sign that says Momona Malasadas. Her mouth waters as the smell overwhelms her. Tack barely waits for her to catch up before darting through the open door.

"Alola!" comes the worker's greeting. A few moments later, Remi and Tack are seated at a table, an enormous mound of fried dough, absolutely covered in sugar, placed on the table in front of them.

Remi takes a bite and thinks it's the best thing she's ever eaten. The brown outside is crispy and soft at the same time, sugar dusting off onto Remi's face, her shirt, the table... but the inside. Steaming hot dough practically melts in her mouth. Remi thinks she lets out a moan.

Remi and Tack are on their third malasada when she pulls out the Luxury Ball again. She takes in a slow, deep breath. Then her thumb pushes against the center button. A flash of red fills the store. When it recedes, a tiny, floating green worm is looking at her.

She blinks. It blinks back.

It's huge eyes are close enough to her face that they practically fill her own vision. The Pokémon lets out a soft trilling sound, like a cross between a bird and a cat.

"Uh... hey."

Tack chirps beside her. The Dreepy looks down at Tack and blinks. Then it looks back to her. It makes a little circle in the air, its green body undulating like a ribbon. Remi just looks at it.

...This was what her sister spent all that money on? Remi knew it was supposed to get strong later, but... really?

A server walks past their table then, carrying a plate of steaming malasadas. The Dreepy chitters, then zips through the air. It snatches a malasada up as the server yelps in surprise, before flying back to Remi. It drops its prize on her plate, opens its mouth like a viper, and dives in to feast.

"Miss," comes the server's stern voice. Remi flinches in her seat before looking up at her. "If you can't control your..." She looks down at the Dreepy. Her eyebrows pull together. "...Pokémon... then I'm going to have to ask you to leave."

"Uhh, sorry. Just on our way out." Remi hurries up from the table as she speaks, dropping more money on the table. Tack jumps up to her arm and then shoulder, and Remi snatches up the Dreepy, half-eaten malasada still in its jaw. Remi all but sprints from the store.




They find their way to the beach and Remi drops down to the sand. The little Dreepy is still chomps away at the malasada, Tack giving it a curious look. Remi plucks the malasada away.

The Dreepy freezes, like it takes a moment to figure out what just happened. Then it looks up at Remi and hisses.

"You're trouble," she says to the little dragon. It blinks up at her. A sly smile curls its way across Remi's lips. She tears off a piece of the malasada and holds it out to the Dreepy in an open hand. It eagerly snatches the treat up. "I like trouble."




Eventually (after asking multiple people for directions) Remi makes it back to the hotel. When she opens the door to her shared room, she sees a misshapen lump in the far bed - her roommate. Remi can't see features in the dark, but even if she could, she'd doubt she knows the person. Remi hasn't exactly been a social butterfly since transferring to the school - not that Kara would ever let her have a social life, anyway.

Just as well. As long as it's not one of Kara's sycophants, Remi doesn't care who it is. She drops her bag on the remaining bed, grabs her pajamas, and heads for the shower.

She's not sure how, but cleanliness feels like and absolute luxury. By the time she's warm in her bed, wet, dark hair falling down her back in waves, Remi feels the drain of the day pouring over her like water. She flops down onto the mattress, Tack hurrying to take his spot curled up at her side. Remi presses her lips together for a moment. Then she sits up and reaches over to grab the Luxury Ball off of her bedside table. Holding it under the bed's comforter to muffle the flash, Remi lets out Trouble.

He chirps in confusion before Remi pulls away the comforter. Trouble blinks up at her and gives his head a shake. Remi smiles. She offers him a finger. He angles his head down to look at it before his pink tongue darts out against her skin. He looks back up at her and flies in an undulating circle around her head.

Remi and Tack watch Trouble darts further and further away from her around the room, taking in their surroundings. He pauses though, when he notices her roommate for the first time. Remi stills. Trouble drifts down to the form, blinking at it, turning his head this way and that. Remi feels her muscles tense. She starts to lift the Luxury Ball.

"Trouble..." she whispers in warning.

Quick as a flash, he darts down to collide with the body over the blankets, image flickering in the air for a moment. Red light fills the room too late, calling Trouble back to his Luxury Ball.
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Hidden 6 days ago Post by Arista
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Arista The Dork

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One moment she's fast asleep and warm in her bed, the next she feels a body collide with her own and she's falling. A startled yelp leaves her lips as she lands on the hard wood floor, limbs flailing every which way in her confusion. For several moments her muddled brain is blank, her heavy eyes blinking slowly. It isn't until a melodious cry fills her ears that she's sitting up, a sharp cry follows and Kira fumbles to escape her blanket. The air that had been cool before now felt weighted, and each passing second made it more suffocating.

"The hell was that?" She hisses out angrily as she slowly stands on her feet, eyes narrowed and focusing on the other person in the room. A girl with dark hair sits on her bed with a Pikachu beside her, then she sees the Luxury Ball in her hands and sighs in irritation. Her hands reach for her two Pokémon who radiate anger and confusion, her heavy eyes sting as she pets along soothe skin and soft fur. Anger is simeeting beneath her skin as well as slight curiosity, because something had collided with her. She knows it wasn't a dream-infused hallucination, pain flared along her side everyone other second.

Queen sways forward with her eyes narrowed, her fan-like tail beginning to rotate. Astral too is slowly beginning to move his body, paws lightly tapping along the mattress as his ears flatten along his head.

If she doesn't calm them down both will attack, reason doesn't matter when it comes to their protectiveness over her.

With a sigh that expands her entire chest, Kira runs her hands through her hair before focusing on her teammates again. With gentle hands she reaches for Queen's face, tugging until she can run her cheek along smooth skin. She can feel Queen relax and it helps her breathe slightly easier, usually Milotic don't get angry but this is one occasion where it can't be helped. Unlike its Pokedex entree it can get angry and it doesn't always calm those that are angry. Once she's sure Queen won't attack with her tail, she releases her to pick Astral up.

Silence continues to fill the air. But right now Kira can't be bothered to say anything else. Her temper is shortest when she's tired, and despite this hard-earned trip if the girl -she had to be Remi- says anything all bets are off. Astral nuzzles her cheek and relaxes with a sigh, the air lightens again and she can relax again. Soothing her hand along Queen's blue 'hair' one last time as she sets Astral down, she moves towards her discarded suitcase. She'd noticed the others were hair and it reminded her that she no doubt smelled of plane, wrinkling her nose she goes about collecting her pajamas.

As she passes her roommates bed she can't help but narrow her eyes in irritation, her usual friendly demeanor nonexistent at this hour. As she opens the bathroom door she glances over at her two Pokemon, pointing at them and clicking her tongue. "Go back to sleep, I'll be out soon." Are her only words, the warning clear in her tone. Both remain upright for a moment longer, before both nod and lay down once more. Licking her lips as she closes the door, Kira rolls her shoulders once with a huff. Then she moves towards the shower, turning the water on before pulling out her toothbrush from her small toiletries bag.

She's done ten minutes later, her exhaustion rearing its head halfway through. Stumbling a bit as she slips into her pajamas, Kira lazily makes an attempt to dry hwr hair. Grunting at the effort it takes she gives up halfway through, exiting out into the room once more. Without a word she passes her roommate towards her own bed, crawling in with a soft sigh.

She curls up and smiles when Astral settles along her side, a smooth nose nuzzling her cheek before disappearing. Within moments she's asleep again, damp brown hair fanning out behind her.
Hidden 5 days ago Post by c3p-0h
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c3p-0h unending foolery

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Remi sees her roommate jolt up in bed and her mouth is open immediately to apologize, or explain, or...

But then Remi catches the angry, cold look on her face, and the way her Pokémon immediately tense up, ready to attack. Her mouth closes. The guilt melts away, replaced by anger. Tack bristles beside her, responding to her roommate's team. Remi doesn't move to calm him. Instead, she stays stone-still, her own glare turning frigid.

Stuck-up private school snob.

If her roommate wants to do some "silent treatment" BS, then fine. Remi can play that game too.

Remi pretends not to see the girl as she walks by her bed glaring. Instead she places Trouble's ball on the bedside table again, runs a hand over Tack's raised fur, and slides her way back under the covers. She goes to sleep that night still bristling with anger, the sound of the running shower in the bathroom filling the air.




Remi's awake well before dawn. She's never been one to sleep much - and the less she can interact with her roommate, the better. Tack stretches on the bed, yawning, as Remi quietly moves about her side of the room. Within minutes she's out the door, backpack slung over her shoulder and Tack scurrying behind her.

The hallways of the hotel are eerily quiet, only the earliest risers starting to get ready for the day. Remi rubs at her eyes as she walks towards the dining area - she vaguely remembers seeing a pamphlet in her room about a breakfast buffet. She pulls out her phone to look at the time.

17 texts.
3 missed calls.
1 new voice mail.


She pauses. Something that feels suspiciously like guilt finds its way into her system, like drips from an IV. Then she turns her phone screen dark again.

The buffet is devoid of people, save for employees trying to not look as tired as they must feel, and a drowsy looking couple at a far table picking at their plates and not talking. Tack scampers in the room, enticed by the smell of food - sweet syrups, frying meat, and the tang of juice make Remi's mouth water. Her stomach growls, reminding her that she hasn't eaten a real meal in over 24 hours. She grabs a plate and loads it with food - pancakes, french toast dripping with macadamia sauce, sausages, a bowl of cold soba noodles, a pile of berries, and an omelet loaded with cheese, mushrooms, peppers, and bacon. She grabs a table in a far corner of the room and digs in, Tack eagerly joining her. She's halfway through the omelet when a glass full of juice is placed on the table in front of her.

Remi jolts up in her chair, Tack mirroring her. Then her eyes narrow when she sees who sits across from her: Taran, one of the students from her school. She'd been hoping to avoid him. He gives her a small smile that can only be called condescending.

"Wouldn't want you to choke," he says before taking a sip of his own juice.

"You could," Remi snipes back. Taran's smile grows sharper. Then he picks up a fork and starts eating from his own plate. "Don't think I invited you."

"You looked lonely." Remi wants to scoff. She'd take loneliness over his company any day. He's one of Kara's friends - they have some exhausting 'will they or won't they' deal going on, and tormenting Remi is an easy way for anyone to get in her twin's good books. Remi just glares for a moment longer before grumpily going back to her food. Tack looks up at her questioningly, then back across the table. Taran's dour-looking Farfetch'd has perched itself beside him, pecking at a plate of steamed vegetables.

They eat in moody silence. Remi refuses to break first - if he's just here to annoy her, then he must have some sort of plan -

"So, I hear you're a thief now."

There it is.

"Can't steal something that doesn't have an owner," she snaps back.

"Oh, great defense. You brainstorm that one? Practice it in the mirror?" Remi's angry gaze shoots up to Taran, but he's just eating his breakfast, as relaxed as you please. "This is just a fair warning," he says, wiping at his mouth with a napkin. Then his eyes turn sharp. "Everyone's going to know. But then, I guess it's not surprising. Liar. Cheat. What's one more mark against you?"

"I didn't cheat-"

"Please. We all know Kara should've been the one chosen." Taran leans forward, voice low and dangerous. "The teachers might be oblivious, but they won't be forever. You'll screw something up because that's what you're good at, and then you'll be on the first flight back to Hammerlocke."

"Then what?" Remi says, leaning in to meet him. "Kara gets to fly out and you two go gallivanting through Alola?" The smirk Remi gives him is mocking - almost cruel. "You know that you're already dead to her, right?" Surprise flashes in Taran's eyes. Then confusion. He's quick to smother them though, regaining his composure - but Remi latches onto the feeling of satisfaction they give her. "You did the one thing she'll never forgive: you were better than her. Someone decided that you were good enough to come on this trip, and she wasn't. She'll resent you for it for the rest of her life." Remi's smirk widens as she can see the gears turning in Taran's mind. He knows she's right - she can see it in the cracks of his composure. Remi leans back in her chair and picks up a piece of french toast. "Just a fair warning." She takes a bite.

Taran stares at her. Then he slowly leans back in his own chair. His expression is still and angry. Then without a word, he shoves himself up from the table and marches out of the room, Farfetch'd trotting behind him.

Remi lets out a deep breath she hadn't realized she was holding, and slumps a little in her chair. Tack nudges himself against her hand on the table and Remi scratches between his ears. She lets Trouble out of his ball, and the little Dreepy swirls in the air for a few curious turns before Remi directs his attention to Taran's abandon plate of food. Trouble needs little encouragement to dive in.

She picks up the glass of juice and takes a long gulp.




Eventually Ms. Simone sends out a message to the students to meet at the beach for a special warm-up task to "get them acquainted with the local environment and stretch their muscles," whatever that means. Remi stands barefoot in the sand, still warming in the early morning sunlight, Tack on her shoulder, and Trouble swirling around in the air. She sees other students openly staring at her, eyes following Trouble. They whisper to each other, trying to point without her noticing. Taran stands among them, saying something. He catches her eye and gives a smirk and a nod.

Skitty's officially out of the bag.

"Is everyone gathered?" Ms. Simone's voice calls out over the group. Her eyes scan the crowd as she does a quick head count. "Wonderful. I hope everyone had a lovely first night!" Students shift their weight from one foot to the other as Ms. Simone forces enthusiasm. Her smile falters a bit at the lack of response. "Right. Well. After a night of extravagance, it's out into the world! We've set up a little starter activity for everyone! This will be challenging - it'll test your problem solving abilities and skills as a trainer. Somewhere on or around this island, I've hidden a very specific orb. You lot will have several days to try and find it. You'll be out in the wilderness of Melemele Island with nothing but your Pokémon, your partners, and whatever supplies you either sign out from me, or purchase from town. The pair that finds it is to bring it directly to me - and there may be a special prize involved!"

Anticipation mixes with dread in Remi's stomach. She will be the one to bring that orb back. Energy circulates through her, ready to move, to prove herself. The idea of partners though... already, students are whispering to each other, grinning and linking arms.

"This is a treasure hunt of sorts, but you won't have a map. Instead, I've based this item's location off of an ancient Alolan chant." Ms. Simone straightens up again and recites from memory.

"Tapu Koko reclines under the full moon
Resting between us friends.

The singing shells call
Listen to their enticing song.

Ilima blossoms beckon towards you
My love whom I miss dearly.

Tell the story
Of our loved hideaway.
"


She grins at the crowd. Remi raises an eyebrow at the cryptic words.

What the heck is any of that supposed to mean?

"I'll be sending the words along to each of you in case you have trouble remembering. Oh, and I forgot to mention, you'll be partnered with whomever you share a room with at the hotel."

Shit.
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Hidden 5 days ago 5 days ago Post by Arista
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Arista The Dork

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Kira wakes up slowly, body warm and mind empty of all thoughts. Her ears catch the faint sounds of waves from the beach she'd caught a glimpse of. Slowly her eyes open and immediately squint half-closed, sunlight hitting her directly in the face. Blinking to clear the brightness away, when she opens then she finds that a shadow has settled over the spot, her eyes lifting to see Queen yawning.

A hand reaches out from beneath her blanket, fingers outstretched to glide along smooth skin. Only to press close and immediately pull back, guilt flooding her system like ice water. In the next instant Kira's up and shifting bee legs over Astral, lips pressed into a thin line as she stands. She'd forgotten completely last night about finding a water-filled place for Queen, and now her smooth skin was as stiff as it had been when she was a Feebas and sje was no doubt uncomfortable in more then one way. At home while she slept out of her ball she had access to water, they used to have a small pool in her room but they took it down when Queen evolved. Thankfully they had an outdoor pool that she could soak in, which had Kira pausing with a blink. Spinning towards the large windows she felt like smacking herself, a large pool with crystal-clear water was only a few feet away.

"I am so sorry Queen." Are her first words that fill the air, she doesn't even care if her roommate is within the room. She should've looked while she was eating, no doubt Queen is uncomfortable. Her worries cease when she feels a large head rub along her cheek, a soft melodic cry filling the air. Her father's voice echos in her head that she needs to always remember that Queen needs to be in water, or it'll have negative outcomes. Patting along dru-rough no doubt painful skin, she pushes open the doors and is met with the scent of the sea. Queen straightens upright immediately with her fan-like tail beginning to sway, happy to be allowed near water. A glance down the snake-like body she can see just how dry her skin is, and it has her reaching for Queen's Dive Ball. With an apologetic gaze she recalls her inside, before stepping out and walking along the path that leads towards the pool. Once there she tosses the Dive Ball up and watches as Queen appears after a flash of red light, her melodic cry is followed by a twirl within the crystal-blue water. Her smile is small as she watches Queen happily twirling beneath the water, some of the tension in her shoulders relaxing a bit.

Before she realizes that today's the first day of the trip.

With a curse she turns on her bare heel, taking off back to her room to check her phone. It isn't as late as she feared it was, but she makes quick work of getting ready. Once she's dressed and Astral is awake, they exit the room once she's sure the glass doors are closed and she has her key card. Breakfast is in full swing when she reaches the buffet area, not that it matters much.

She and Astral share plates of food without a word, Sandra and her Kirlia joining them mid-way through. And now she's watching as each person around her pair up with different levels of enthusiasm, apparently they weren't the only ones having issues. She feels her phone vibrate but pays it no mind, sighing once she decides to be the first one to make a move. Going back to last night she can see that they were both at fault in some way, her reaction was uncalled for but blame that on the exhaustion.

Her pace was slow due to her shoes sinking into the sand, but she never stopped her approach. Once she was close enough she felt her shooters tense a bit, Astral chirping soflty in her ear questionly. With a lick of her lips and pauses a few feet from the brunette, and offers a nod of her head. "Before we start this assignment I wanted to apologize." Her expression doesn't change but internally she's smacking her head, she hadn't meant to say that. But as she thinks about it she settles down, though they'd left her mouth without warning she means every word. She's not someone who stays angry very long or hold grudges, she's too friendly and stubborn to let it keep her down.

And that, we'll kick everyone ass here by getting this artifact first." She adds after a beat of silence, a smile pulling her lips up. Noa where do we start...we have an entire island to search..." Her brows furrow in thought as she watches the other pairs plotting, glancing at Ms. Simone as she writes something down on a clipboard. While she had some supplies in her suitcase and her messenger bag, it wouldn't be enough for several days. Food especially, tilting her head and offers her roommate a grin before taking off towards Ms. Simone, excitement buzzing along her skin.

A plan slowly forms in her head as she asks what she can ask for, Astral's tail beginning to wag at her change in mood. While she isn't sure her apology will help patch things up so soon, but she's willing to be optimistic and say that this will go great.
Hidden 5 days ago 5 days ago Post by c3p-0h
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c3p-0h unending foolery

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Remi pauses as she sees a girl with light brown hair walk over, an Eevee on her shoulder - her roommate. She takes in a breath, stealing herself for whatever kind of attitude is about to be thrown at her. Remi is already on guard after the bad first impression, and then the early morning conversation with Taran. Word’s already getting around about her and Trouble, she knows, and now she’s partnered with some snob who -

Apologizes immediately.

Remi blinks in surprise. Tack’s head tilts to the side. Remi doesn’t know what to do with this new development. This is… a prank, probably. Right? Remi doesn’t think she’s had a single interaction with another student since transferring that hasn’t ended with her wanting to hit something. Her eyebrows pull together as her roommate chats and smiles.

If this girl wants to play nice, then Remi won’t be the first to throw a punch. She’s not about to give anyone another reason to throw accusations at her.

“Other groups don’t have a chance,” she says when the girl stops talking. Remi glances around, unsure what to do with herself - she doesn’t know how to be anything but combative with her peers. After a moment, she clears her throat. She tries for something less curt.

“Remi,” she says, giving a short nod. “Tack, Trouble.” She points her thumb at each Pokémon in turn. She hesitates then, chewing on her lip. “...Didn’t mean to wake you up. Trouble’s… new. Doesn’t know his manners yet.” Trouble flicks his tongue in and out of his mouth.

Kira tilts her head even as a grin pulls at her lips, eyes shifting to each Pokémon curiously. She's seen plenty of Pikachu before, but this new one is interesting. "Kira, nice to meet you," she replies easily, a hand reaching down towards her belt to get Queen's ball. [/color=fff79a]This is Astral, and this is Queen."[/color] She introduces each of her own Pokémon, releasing Queen who lets out a melodic cry and stretches out her body.

She can hear how those around them go quiet, no doubt confused to why her Milotic is such an odd color. Queen waves her golden-orange-red tail, eyes focused on the three before her. Astral jumps from her shoulder to get closer to the other two, pointed ears swiveling this way and that. Queen hesitates before sliding forward, head dipping down as she lets out another cry. Kira pays no mind to the quiet, hands settling in her hips as her nose wrinkles in thought.

“How should we start? I'm assuming we'll be out in the open for this which means we'll need more supplies. I have a tent and a mini cooking set, but I'm guessing we'll need more….” As she thinks she begins to sway slightly, hair swaying in the breeze that glides along the beach.

Remi’s proud of herself that she manages to not roll her eyes at seeing the Milotic, unique coloring fully visible in the daylight.

Probably had daddy buy it for her. (Though if she’s briefly transfixed by the lovely scales, she’ll never admit it.)

“Some food that’ll last and we can carry,” Remi answers. She’s quick to focus on the task at hand. This is what she’s here for - what she’s good at. “Tack’s got a good nose for edible fruit and berries, so we can forage, too.” Her mind narrows in on the problem, spinning for ways to solve it. Ms. Simone’s words echo in her mind. “She said it could be on or around the island. We should grab some oxygen filters in case.” The students have all been forced to learn to use them in PE class: small face apparatuses that you strap over your mouth to filter breathable oxygen when underwater. “We don’t have anything that can fly.” Remi’s gaze darted up to see Trouble gliding in idle circles. “Er… that we can fly on. I have some climbing gear, but we should grab rope, too.”

Kira's nodding along, phone in hand as she types out what they'll need. Then she's half turning to see Ms. Simone already surrounded by students, humming softly before turning back to Remi. "We should take one obstacle at a time, collecting what we need is half done. Next we should choose where exactly to start looking, if by sea or land-" She pauses to glance around at the gathered group, taking in their Pokémon of various typing. "-and judging by the fact that they're aren't many Water Pokémon almost everyone will go by land." She concludes with a shrug, flying would be easier but they don't have the ability right now. "Rope, food and the filters. Then we set or? Or try to dissect the riddle next?"

They have several different options at hand to take, her eyes glance to the rolling waves with a curious glint in them.

The riddle is as mysterious as this entire region, or so the books she'd read said.

Remi’s eyes scan the group, mouth skewing to the side. It’ll be a bit before Ms. Simone is free, and Remi doesn’t like wasting anything, least of all time. Her sharp eyes flick back to meet Kira’s.

“Bookstore. I want a guide book about the island. The poem she based it off of is ancient, right? Cultural. We can do some research, figure out where our starting point’s supposed to be, and come back when the crowd’s gone. Good?” It’s not a real question. Remi doesn’t wait for approval before she turns on her heel and starts walking away from the beach.

The snort that leaves Kira's throat is sharp, her head shaking from side to side. Instead of feeling anger or annoyance at being left alone, she feels amusement filling her chest. So...prickly Is her only thought before she's recalling Queen and taking off, mind wandering towards the riddle.

Astral wiggles as they enter their destination, easily finding her roommate amongst a large collection of books. The air is cool and few people are currently inside, grabbing a book she settles in the opposite seat without a word.

"Should we make this more of a challenge? Whoever finds a clue first gets free Malasadas from the other." It's a statement more than a suggestion, her attention never leaving her task. Astral settles in her lap with a wag of his tail, the silence a calm balm to their hectic morning.

Remi’s hand pauses, the thin page held between her fingers half-way flipped. Her eyes go up to Kira, eyebrow raised. Remi would be lying if she said she isn’t intrigued. A smile almost finds its way to her face. But then her gaze flicks down again and she turns another page. She reminds herself that whatever game Kira is playing, she’s not stupid enough to be pulled in. Memories of her first few days at school float back to her, of her sister’s friends acting nice and fawning for her, only to humiliate her for a laugh.

“Shouldn’t make bets you can’t win,” she says, voice flat. Tack curls on her lap, nestling in, as Trouble flies up to a bookshelf. He tilts his head then shoots his tongue out experimentally against the spine of a hardcover book. It sticks, pulling the book out to fall to the floor. Remi’s head shoots up at the sound. She lets out a small sigh and gets up. “Besides,” she says as she bends down and picks up the book. She reads the title and flicks it open. “We should be focusing on beating the others, not each other.”

"A little friendly competition never hurt anyone." Is her absent reply, her eyes scanning the pages before her. After that she says nothing and focuses on reading, pages flipping between pale long fingers. Then she's switching to another book, posture relaxing with each passing moment.

She loses track of how many books she's gone through, when she finds a passage that rings a bell in her head. "Remi, look at this." She murmurs softly as she shifts forward, flipping the book to show the other girl. On the left page near the end of the largest paragraph the line stands out almost vividly, easy to miss if one wasn't looking for it.

The singing shells call
Listen to their enticing song


Remi straightens at the call, forgetting whatever it is she’s reading about ilima blossoms. She approaches Kira, leaning in to scan the paragraph.

“Kahuli Point…” she says out loud. She catches Kira’s eye before reading, “A secluded point on the northern end of Melemele Island only accessible by hiking through dense rainforest, Kahuli was known in ancient times as the natural environment of a now-extinct species of mollusk Pokémon. Many chants make reference to the ‘singing shells of Kahuli,’ as they are believed to have emitted a sound similar to indigenous flute music when gathered together in mass quantities.” Now a slow smile finally does make its way to Remi’s face. She meets Kira’s eyes again. “Not bad.”

“Eh!” A sharp cry jolts Remi to attention. A middle aged man, tan and heavy set, waves an angry hand at them. “You kids! Dis one bookstore, not a library! You make a purchase or you go!”

Trouble hisses at him. The man’s eyes widen, then narrow again.

“Sorry!” Remi cuts in. “We’ll be right out!” She grabs her phone and snaps a picture of the page, being sure to capture the old map of the island on the opposite side (which elicits another shouted protest from the store owner). Then she grabs the book from Kira, puts it closed on the table, grabs Kira’s hand, and pulls her back towards the door. “Come on,” she says, a note of excitement in her voice. Tack and Trouble hurry behind.
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Hidden 18 hrs ago Post by Arista
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Arista The Dork

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They're back outside in the slowly rising temperate, a clue already in their grasp. Kira makes no mention of Remi still holding her hand, or how her face had looked almost foreign -in a good way- with her smile. Her own lips pulled into an excited grin, though it faded a bit as confusion filled her head. "Would Ms. Simone still be on the beach?" She asks with a furrow of her brows, and that's what starts a miniature search and locate mission.

By the time they return to the hotel, Kira can feel her stomach rumbling in hunger. They find Ms. Simone sitting beneath a large umbrella with a drink in hand, Kira's eyebrow twitches in irritation.

"Hello dears! How can I help?" Her words are slightly muffled by the straw between her lips. Kira exhales in an attempt to catch her breath, before launching into their story. Ending with how they found a part of the clue and that they needed items.

The straw slips from Ms. Simone’s lips. She sits up, giving the girls a long look, as if she’s evaluating something.

“Kahuli Point… there’s a thought.” Excitement bubbles in Remi’s chest. That reaction… means something, right? Remi tries to read Ms. Simone. Approval? Surprise? Remi decides to take it as a good sign, whatever it is. “The first couplet references Tapu Koko. Most would think to start at the Ruins of Conflict, where it’s believed to dwell.”

Remi shakes her head. “Wouldn’t make sense. The second line refers to friendship - opposite of conflict. I think the first couplet is only there to reference when we’re supposed to arrive.” She glances at Kira. “I looked it up. The full moon is tomorrow night. We have until then to get to Kahuli Point.”

Ms. Simone gives them that same measuring look. Then her lips curve into a smile. “I have a good feeling about you two.” Remi’s chest swells. She tries to keep from smiling. Schooling her face into a serious expression, she nods. With that, Ms. Simone stands and starts getting them their requested supplies: some camping food, oxygen filters, and rope. “Be sure to grab some repels and healing supplies, too. Never know what you could run into in the forest.”

Once the girls have their supplies packed away, she gives them another nod and smile before sitting back in her chair.

“Best of luck to you two - and work quick.”

Something feels different between them after finding the clue, like a small wall was cracked open a bit within Remi. Lunch is spent dividing their attention between the map and their food, the air full of amazing aromas.

"If we go up this path we can cut out some time." She murmurs with a finger trailing along the screen before her, the path is winding and goes up which means they'll need to climb. Once they finish Kira suggests they check everything one last time before setting out, excitement thumping through them.

The breeze feels light along her skin, Astral perched quietly atop her shoulder. She can see other students ahead of them along the main road, but she doubts they know where to go. Hands reaching up for her hair she ties it easily, jumping on the balls of her feet with a grin. "Let's win this." She states with a grin, hands gripping the straps of her bag. "We're already one step ahead, let's win it all." She adds with a chirp, before spinning to face forward once more.

Remi only nods, her eyes laser focused on the back of Taran’s head. He’s far ahead of them on the road, that annoying smugness of his in every step.

She can’t wait to rub their victory in his stupid face.

Remi retreats into herself as they walk, mind working on all the problems that needed solving. Once they made it to Kahuli Point, they’d no doubt have to be on the lookout for some sort of signal - a light, or shadow, or something that they’d only notice on a full moon. The next couplet was about ilima flowers… from what Remi had read there were two main types of ilima, a kind that grew low, and a kind that grew high. They were supposed to be tiny, golden-yellow flowers with paper thin leaves. Would there be some sort of flower patch? A carving? And then what? They follow it to some sort of hiding spot?

Then there’s the matter of them hiking out into the wilderness, for who knows how many days… she trusts Tack with her life. She knows her little Pikachu can handle just about anything thrown their way, but Trouble is completely new. He has no training, she doesn’t know his style, and Remi wants to prove herself too badly to be willing to take a chance on a complete unknown.

Time to start training, then.

Trouble floats a little ways ahead of her, his worm-like body rippling through the air. Tack trots below him, ears twitching this way and that.

Without warning, Remi lets out a short, high whistle, and then kicks a stray rock directly at Tack. He flashes to the side, dodging reflexively. Trouble jolts in the air at the sudden commotion, spinning around frantically.

Kira watches the display out of the corner of her eye, hands clasped behind her lower back. Nothing is said for the entire walk up towards the Ruins of Conflict. Astral jumps down once they reach the location, ears swiveling this way and that.

Without a word she picks up a rock and tosses it towards him, Astral dodges to the right without even looking back. This will be a test now more ways than one, endurance means more than brute strength. With a jerk of her chin she indicates a barely visible path towards the left of the ruins, it goes up at an incline that means they'll be higher up vantage point wise.

Inhaling slowly she glanced at the others are still walking, before rolling her shoulders and moving towards the path.

Remi feels irritation prickle at her skin when Kira decides to show off her Eevee’s dodging skills, mirroring what Remi had done minus the whistling. She lets out a short breath and rolls her eyes. Dodging isn’t the point. She needs to teach Trouble to listen to her, and respond. Remi’s spent the walk periodically whistling and kicking rocks at Tack’s back. Each time she did it, Trouble seemed more and more interested in the exchange, until finally, when he was looking at her, Remi had whistled, swiped a rock from the ground, and chucked it at him. He’d given a surprised chirp before darting out of the way of the sailing pebble. Remi had grinned triumphantly. And so the walk had passed with remi taking the first steps of training Trouble, Tack observing with interest - he’d always been an ‘only child’ so to speak. He’d never seen Remi train another Pokémon before.

It’s dark by the time they make it to the Ruins of Conflict. Remi’s eyes follow Kira’s to the path. “Wait,” she says softly, to not alert the other students. “We’ll need to camp soon, and we don’t know what’s in that forest. Safer to spend the night with the group, get an early start in the morning.”

She doesn't say anything in response to Remi's words, simply nods once to indicate that she'd heard her. Joining the group is easy enough, setting up camp takes a little more effort. Astral darts away from the flickering shadows casted by a fire someone had started. It's a way that he's always trained, shifting this way and that as if he were dancing. As she finishes with setting the last pole of the tent down, she clicks her tongue twice in quick succession.

Astral jumps up into the air with a twirl and his tail already up, slapping the rocks she'd thrown at him away. They hadn't always been on the best terms, Queen had been her first Pokémon. They'd been together for so long she sometimes forgets that this Eevee hadn't been hers, her mother had caught it during one of her trips to heal a sick Pokémon. Their foundation was nonexistent and now they had their own way of training, Queen will need to be taught again now that she's evolved. Food begins to fill the air as well as laughter and voices, Kira settles down on the dirt with a soft sigh.

Tomorrow would be tough she knew, while they figured out part of the riddle it still had so much more to it. They'd just scratched the surface, with a wrinkle of her nose she focused her gaze on the star-filled sky.

Suddenly there’s a small shock of light, and the sound of electricity cracking through the air. A brown paper bag lands in Kira’s lap. Inside is a hot malasada, crisp and steaming as if it were fresh. Sitting across from her, Remi takes a bite of her own, sugar crystals dusting her face. Tack sniffs at it, and Remi tears off a piece for him, then another for Trouble. The Dreepy snatches it up, zipping through the air with a wad of cooked dough in his mouth, like he doesn’t know where to go with it.

A startled yelp leaves Kira’s lips, body jumping at the sudden weight and heat in her lap. Only to smile when she sees what it is, her stomach rumbling with hunger. "Thank you." She murmurs with a smile aimed in Remi's direction, before opening the bag. Astral chirps and paws at her leg, which has her giving him a piece. Queen joins them moments later, Kira setting her Dive Ball down beside her thigh.

It’s delicious.

Remi just shrugs a shoulder, eyes following Trouble as he darts around. He seems to finally settle high up in a tree. Remi listens to the sound of leaves rustling and Trouble eating.

“You found the first clue.”

The rest of the night had been mostly uneventful, they'd settled in a time to depart without anyone seeing them. Which is how Kira finds herself traversing in a pitch-black forest with the stars still bright in the sky. Cries of Pokémon are quiet in the predawn darkness, eerie sometimes when it happens after a few moments of silence.

She doesn't relax until they're deep into the untamed foliage, steps light even as she picks her path with careful eyes. Astral is perched upright between her shoulders with his front paws on her head. Ears twitching this way and that as he listens, ready to warn the if something is close by. It isn't until sometime later that they pause before a small stream, that something catches Astral's attention.

Before Kira can ask what's happening the small fox is taking off with a sharp cry, tail raised and ears lowered. "Astral!" Kira whisper-shouts, glancing at Remi for a split second before taking off after her partner. It's stupid she knows that but she has to, Astral wouldn't just run off without a reason. What she sees when she bursts through a small clearing as her breath hitching, eyes going wide as Astral approaches a curled up form. Her phone is out in an instant even as she steps forward, which draws the other Pokémon's attention.

It shows its teeth, its eyes narrowing even as it tries to stand. "Astral, go get Remi." She commands firmly but softly, inching forward with slow steps. When her partner doesn't move she snaps her fingers twice, Astral takes off with a soft cry. The little wolf -A Rockruff- whines softly, the defensiveness fading just as quickly as it had come. Reading the entry of the Pokémon Kira sits down slowly when she's close enough, crossing her legs and letting her eyes scan the small form. It's been hurt, badly if it can't even get up.

She's not sure what to do.

Astral doesn’t have far to run before he finds Remi and her team, already following after. They dart through the forest, leaves and twigs brushing at Remi’s skin, before skidding to a stop. Remi’s eyes widen as she takes in the sight of the injured Pokémon, Kira hovering over it.

“What happened to it?” Remi murmurs before she can stop herself. She knows Kira doesn’t have the answer. The sound of the little wolf’s pained whimpering makes Remi’s heart clench.

Then another sound stills her. A branch snaps in the darkness of the forest. A growl rumbles.

“Kira, pick it up,” Remi whispers, frozen in place. Her gaze is stuck on the dark shadow that spawned the noise. Then two golden eyes with black slits for pupils cut through the darkness.

With a roar, an enormous cat pounces through the forest, razor claws outstretched and fangs bared. Trouble lets out a terrified yelp.

Tack!

Electricity jumps through the air, illuminating the forest like daylight for the briefest of moments. Tack’s thunder wave dances over the cat’s crimson fur, as it lets out a pained growl. The Incineroar falls to the forest floor. It’s muscles spasm as it fights to regain control of itself.

“Run!”

Barely giving Kira enough time to scoop up the Rockruff, Remi grabs her arm and takes off through the forest.

The Rockruff yelps as they run, no doubt the jostling making its wounds hurt. Kira can't pause to comfort it as they keep racing through the trees, the distant sound of a roar filling the air spurring them on. She can hear heavy footfalls following and it has her teeth gritting hard, free hand reaching down as if to take out Queen's Dive Ball.

A sharp cry from Astral has Kira looking over her shoulder, her heart nearly stops at what meets her gaze. "Shit! Remi, get down!" She shouts seconds before she's diving down to the ground, a stream of searing heat above their heads. Flamethrower.

Oh, that's it. She thinks darkly before rising to her feet, eyes narrowed as she reaches for her belt. "I've had it!" She calls out while tossing the ball in the air, watching as Queen appears with a cry and flash of red.

The Incineroar doesn't even halt, its arms move close to its body and its chest expands. Then another burst of flame emits from its mouth and aims straight towards them, Kira shifts her stance before raising her free arm. "Queen!" She calls out and the reaction is immediate, Queen straightens with a cry and a burst of water expands outwards to meet the flame. The explosion creates a plume of white mist, making it impossible to see.

A sharp cry from the Rockruff in her arms has Kira spinning around in a circle, only to sent flying backwards. She hits a tree so much force it knocks the wind from her lungs, another sharp cry has her head snapping up only to see a towering figure heading straight for them.

Except it never makes it.

A melodic cry fills the air just before a slender figure appears from the mist, golden-red-orange tall swaying in a way she's seen several times these last few weeks. Queen extends her tail outward and it's surrounded by water, slamming hard into the Incineroar with enough force to send it back a few feet. Queen doesn't even let the feline regroup, her head rears back and her water pulse hits home. Another slam of her tail -aqua tail- has the large cat hissing before turning to flee.

The silence in its wake is deafening
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