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super late but got a post up!

“Hmmm...” Zaria furrowed her brow as the Bennet baby bawled about his Sobble. Sure she could sympathize, but at some point you had to stop crying because it didn't solve anything really. At least he answered her question about the berry. She reached into the pocket where she stored berries and clutched an Aspear fruit, ready to fling it when the time came.

It might have taken some time but they were able to find where the Sobble was. Netty's fast little bug pokemon had made short work of the task, being able to flit in and out through the rooms of the East Wing so quickly. As she and Magnet followed Mellona's cries into the room, Zaria was hit with a strong stench that immediately made her eyes well up.

"Buh, whew, that stings!" It was like a hundred onions were being chopped up right in front of her. Magnet's single eye welled up too. Zaria couldn't criticize Bennet's tears anymore because now she had her own snotty tears to rival his. It took a few minutes to adjust but she and Magnet were able to glance at their surroundings through the blur. It was an old classroom, but Zaria zeroed in on the glistening footprints left behind a certain pokemon. "The footprints!" She made a dash towards a large bookcase where they led to and placed the berry down where they ceased. "Socho! You can come out now. We've got your favorite food!" There was no indication of the pokemon coming out though. Hmmm, but why? Meanwhile Bennet continued to cry, lamenting over a fight or something they'd had earlier.

Was that it? Socho was mad? Zaria was about to ask Bennet more questions but the lights flickered off. She felt something dusty and soft hit her a few times. "Hey! What the hell? Who's doing that?" It stopped as suddenly as it started and the room lit up once more. What...? What was that all about? The berry was gone as well. Zaria massaged her chin with her thumb and forefinger. Magnet beeped beside her, his eye darting about.

Then the lights went out once more after Bennet pleaded with Socho once more. "I don't think your begging is really helping the situation, Ben, just try to be quiet for a second and let's all think." Zaria tried to say it nicely. It probably wouldn't come off that way, and that was to be expected, because she wasn't the best at being diplomatic or polite. And she was annoyed at this whole situation and her incompetence. Was she a ranger or not? She should have been able to find Socho and gotten him out by now, damnit.

"These stupid lights keep going on and off. Hold on," Zaria muttered as she tapped the flashlight app on her phone and a bright light appeared. She shined it towards the light switch. Any footprints? If that Sobble's really just pranking us all, then there should be footprints on the wall...

If footprints were there, then she would know that it was Socho doing all the mischief, which seemed to be the case anyway. It was probably pointless to confirm it. Once they knew for sure though, how were they supposed to lure the Sobble out? Maybe just a teeny Thundershock, or maybe something less effective like a Magnet Bomb. Then again, that might cause some property damage... But maybe it wouldn't? Maybe they could all pull the bookshelf so the Sobble couldn't hide. Or maybe they needed to get a tastier snack to lure it out? What am I supposed to do? I'm supposed to be good at rescuing and finding pokemon...

"Are there any other snacks your Sobble likes? Or maybe a favorite toy?" Zaria asked out loud in the darkness. Maybe there was another way to lure the pokemon out.

@wisteria So even though Magnemite doesn't know the move Flash, I was thinking maaaaybe Magnet could sort of concentrate an electric field around itself and light up like a lightbulb? Would that be allowed or nah?

If not, then I think Zaria could probably use her phone for a flashlight.

“H-huh? Buy you a new one…?” Uh oh, in all her eagerness to help, Zaria now realized how much of a disaster she had made the kitchen. If it had been bad before, it was absolutely terrible now. How did she keep messing up? And now she owed Netty a cookbook? There was no wriggling out of this one, though Zaria still squirmed. “Well, you can wash your dress, right? Haha... And you’ll get your cookbook! Don’t worry about it. I’ll clean this up, alright?!” Sheesh Louise. Anything to avoid more scolding. She honestly wasn’t sure how she would get to the batter on the ceiling, but decided to worry about that later. Out of all this she had at least learned that she could perhaps approach Tessa, the gym leader that had watched their battles, about some advice on Magnet.

Just as she was going to go do that, covered in cake batter or not, Zaria heard some knocking and sobbing. Not wanting to miss anything, she zipped over to the door. There stood a crying boy who then proceeded to explain he had lost a Pokemon.

“There, there. Don’t cry! I’ve found tons of missing Pokemon so this’ll be no problem! And by the way, I could have won first place in the class tournament but the rest of ‘em just got lucky. Anyways, let’s go!” She didn’t bother changing, as she felt it could wait, though they did have to wait for Netty.

Once they arrived to the area where Bennet said Socho had been lost, Netty had her Pokemon use Sweet Scent. Well Zaria wasn’t going to be outdone. Even if this wasn’t a competition, and though she knew it was better to have more people looking for the lost pokemon, she so desperately wanted to prove herself by finding the missing Sobble first. Especially after today, after the morning assembly where she had cried in front of everyone, the class introductions, the tournament, baking, she needed to show off how excellent she could be.

So Zaria looked at the pokedex entry for Sobble. She figured she could try and get some clues about the pokemon's behavior. That was usually what Rangers did when tracking pokemon anyways.“When they’re scared, Sobble tend to cry… And attackers won’t be able to resist weeping. Hmm…” She slammed a fist into her palm. “I have an idea! If we get close enough to the Sobble, maybe we would start to cry too. And let's look for water on the floor. Since Sobble can produce a bunch of sweat and tears, we should be looking for wet footprints.” Then she paused and held her chin between her thumb and forefinger.

“Hey Bennett, does Socho have a favorite berry?” Whatever Bennett answered, if Zaria hopefully had said berry, she would take one from her inventory. “Let’s split up and do a quick sweep. I bet you if one of us starts crying or sees some wet footprints, that means we’re near the Sobble. We can at least narrow down the room he’s in that way. And then maybe we can lure him out with some food, too.” So she went into the nearest room and started her process of elimination. Bennett may have been crying, but the rest of them weren’t. She hoped her plan would work.

@wisteria so... is there a specific way to find sobble? Are we allowed hints? Haha

@LuckyBlackCat you're posting next, right?
@LuckyBlackCat Poor Netty trying to deal with Zaria. She's just trying to show Zaria some basic skills and Zaria's too busy going "haha Magnet go brrr"

Zaria pouted at Netty’s reaction. “Huh?! What’s wrong with it?” And when Netty mentioned teaching her, she insisted, “It tastes fine though!” Still, Zaria was never one to say no to more food. “But alright, if you insist, let’s see what you got!”

If Netty was going to cook, Zaria figured she could clear some stuff away so that was what she did. Bowls were washed, trash was thrown away, and the kitchen was back to looking a little more presentable than before. Zaria worked on some little tasks here and there. But ever a tryhard, she kept butting in with her input: “that doesn’t look like enough sugar. Can we add more?” Or, “can we add chocolate chips? And walnuts? And gummy worms?" Or, "Are you sure this recipe is any good?” Eventually she learned to stop pestering Netty and turn the conversation to something different.

“Those battles today…” Then she threw a dish towel on the counter and groaned. “I went up against accuracy hax! Like c’mon! I didn’t get to show off how good I was. And then Magnet stopped using his electricity. I still don’t get what happened. He couldn't ta run out of electricity, or else he woulda stopped floating.” So why? It was practically impossible to understand how his single eye, metallic chirps, and steel body emoted at times, and earlier had been an example of that. She slumped. “… Well, whatever it was, hopefully Caprea didn’t grade us on those… ‘Cuz then I might be screwed.”

Pushing away those thoughts, she looked at the bowl in Netty’s hands. The batter still needed to be mixed. “Oh! Hey, nevermind that stuff, let me help you with your mixing!” Zaria would show Netty she knew a thing or two about cooking. That would redeem how terrible the day had been, for sure. “Magnet! MIXER MODE GO!!!!”

Immediately Magnet stopped playing with Mellona and flew over to the bowl. Zaria grabbed his left horseshoe unit, while the right one was placed in the mix, so he was sideways facing them. It looked ridiculous. But before Netty could object, Magnet rotated his right unit in the batter rapidly. Needless to say, the mixture flung everywhere. “Ha ha ha! Pretty cool, huh? Now it’s all mixed!” The batter was smooth, but at least half of it had been flung out of the bowl onto the counter, the walls, and of course, Netty and Zaria...

This would definitely be Zaria's general theme.

Her battle theme would probably be something like this.

@LuckyBlackCat@wisteriaI also hope it's okay that I mentioned school food being expensive. If I'm wrong about that though, I can certainly change it.

I was also wondering if Zaria's Magnet could learn a specific move. Magnemite learns the move Magnet Bomb in gen 7 at level 11, but I think they took it out in sword and shield. I was just wondering if I could add it to Magnet's move list, but if not, then that's alright with me.

Zaria didn’t hear the door open as she was too busy eating. But when she heard Netty’s voice, she looked over in the direction of the front door and nearly spat out her food.

“Umf, phwhat? Whab are you doing ‘ere?” Then she swallowed. “Wait a second! Does this mean we’re roommates? Oh man!” The flight from New Bark had been late, she had arrived late, and then in the morning she’d gotten up late for the ceremony. Having a roommate just hadn’t crossed her mind in the midst of all the punctuality problems.

Netty looked pretty ticked. But Zaria hadn’t eaten that much, right? Yet a cursory glance at her surroundings made her realize she had probably eaten a little over the food in the fridge. Oops… She didn't feel like it was her fault though. This penny pinching school doesn’t give enough food! The system sucks! Why were their cafes so expensive? And the school could have stocked more food in their rooms, really. They probably had more than enough money.

“I didn’t realize I had you as my roomie! I thought I was alone,” Zaria laughed sheepishly, taking another bite and swallowing. “But I was just sososo hungry! And the school cafes are sososo expensive! You know?” The oven dinged and she got up, fetching a pair of mitts and retrieving the cake. “I’ll make it up to ya though. I made cake!” She cut Netty a limp slice of her creation. “Haf somb!” Somehow her mouth was full again already, the piping hot cake temperature did not deter Zaria in the slightest.

She thought it was a little gritty, and kind of doughy, but pretty good. Anyone else would have immediately deemed the cake as an inedible mess. “It’s so good! Right?” She beamed. It was completely unclear as to whether she was deflecting, or incredibly dense. “Now, you might still be feeling pretty sour about the food but you can have as much cake as you want! Consider this my gift to you.” That was a fair trade, wasn’t it? Zaria patted herself on the back internally. She truly was the epitome of a kind, selfless, hero. And Netty would obviously be grateful for her generosity.

Magnet came out buzzing. Seeing Mellona he greeted her with a happy swing of his horseshoe magnets and jostled his screws excitedly. “Maaaaaa,” he droned. Maybe he was trying to mimic what Mellona had done earlier? The way he shot out little sparks and tiny jolts of electricity as he floated about in slow, deliberate twirls was a different departure than his usual behavior for sure.

Zaria clapped, perhaps less enthusiastically than others, when the matches ended. So Netty and Troy had won the matches, huh? I didn't even get to show off how good I am! She glanced at the pokeball and slumped. What went wrong? The morning assembly, and my class intro too, damnit... But her stomach growled and snapped her out of her negative thoughts. Magnet would probably appreciate a meal too. Hmm, yeah, food sounded good, and that was enough for her. So she packed up her things, and headed to the cafes, releasing Magnet so he could enjoy the walk with her. His dinner was taken care of, with the rangers having sent her a little battery pack that Magnet happily drained the electricity out of. "I'm kinda glad you don't really need food," she giggled.

And it was a good thing too. The cafes turned out to be a little expensive for her. Ugh, didn't they pay tuition here enough already? Zaria grumbled. Her scholarship was just not enough, and she'd need to take on a part-time job or something. She couldn't ask her parents for help... Worry nagged at her but she tried to brush it off. Hadn't there been some school provided stuff in the fridge? Yes, that was the answer. Switching gears, she headed for the dorms.

As they got to the suite style room, Magnet floated off to explore the abode while Zaria slung her backpack off at the door and threw off her shoes. She wasn't thinking about a roommate or anything of the sort. As far as she was concerned, there was some stress that needed to be cured! "Food time!" There were some ingredients and pre-prepared meals that had been given by the school. It was time to dig in. Maybe she'd make a giant cake too! Yes, cake would be good to have for the first week, which was bound to be stressful since today had been the worst first day of school ever.

Half an hour later the kitchen was kind of a mess and she had eaten nearly a quarter of the food in the fridge. And she was blissfully oblivious of the fact that she had a roommate.

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