Tag Archives: Rei

NaNo 18 Day 11 & 13: Reflection Cave

Caves weren’t nearly as bad as forests in Evangeline’s opinion. While it was more dangerous in terms of cave-ins and potential Pokemon encounters, it was less dangerous in terms of her mental health. Of course, she was thinking of the pictures she had seen of the inside of Mt. Moon, or even the small caverns she had walked through to get to Ambrette town or to hunt for fossils. These connecting caves (albeit lacking in a clever name) were of a completely different cut, and she was being literal.

Unlike the brown, dark stone of other caves, this was nearly blue, with more of the same crystals she’d seen on Route 11 emerging from cracks and crevices. As she walked down the path, she almost let her bike fall in shock. She grabbed it just in time, and tilted her head at what she was seeing in the glow of the crystals. Was that a mirror, in a cave…?

No, it was the wall.

In quiet disbelief, Evangeline walked over and pressed her fingertips lightly to the rock surface. It really was like a natural mirror, the inside of the stone smooth and polished. Maybe every stone in here was a proto-crystal that hadn’t had a chance to find the inner glow? She wasn’t a scientist, so she had no way of knowing. Either way, it reminded Evangeline of something she’d heard about–mirror mazes, where it was hard to know where there was a legitimate doorway and where it was just another wall.

Suddenly, she wished she was in Mt. Moon.

“Amazing, isn’t it?” a voice asked, and she turned. A backpacker, he had a huge yellow pack that was almost as big as him, and he was staring at the wall with an amazed smile. “The whole cave system is this way! I’ve traveled all over Kalos, and it still is just as inspiring as it was the first time.”

She nodded silently, letting her hand fall.

He turned to look at her, and his eyes gleamed when he noticed her gear. “How about a battle? Let you get used to the reflection in your battles now before you get so deep in the system that you can’t get back out.”

That sounded more than fair to Evangeline. Reaching for a Pokeball, she said, “Etienne, let’s give it a shot.”

The big blue dinosaur type came out with a trill. Only he also quickly got distracted. Walking over to the wall, he cooed, flipping his ear frills at his own reflection. Evangeline clapped her hands over mouth to muffle her giggles. “Etienne, focus, sweetie,” she chided once she had control over herself. Shaking her head, he gave her a sheepish smile and looked towards the backpacker, who was letting out his Linoone.

It wasn’t necessarily a hard battle, just a tricky one. Much like her own Ella, this Linoone was a fast bugger, and Etienne had trouble keeping an eye on him so he could use any attacks. Finally, though, one placed Aurora Beam attack knocked the Linoone out.

“Easy now,” she murmured to Etienne, coming to stand beside him as the backpacker checked his Pokemon. He smiled at her and recalled the Pokemon, confirming that it was just a knock-out, nothing serious. Evangeline returned the smile and recalled Etienne. He gave her the required payout, and with a wave, went to go heal up his Linoone.

The caves gave ways to levels…and wild Pokemon. It didn’t take much for her to turn up a new friend–a Fairy type mixed with rocks that reminded Evangeline of a rabbit. Due to the rock, she thought of the pun of the rabbit in the moon and decided to nickname it Usagi. It didn’t appear to have a gender–it didn’t even have a mouth, so she used the French gender-neutral pronoun of “on,” or one in reference to a person, when referring to it out of respect. It seemed thrilled at the acknowledgement.

Usagi

It was the last bit of peace that they had. There were levels to the cave that had to be navigated, and sometimes the way up was actually to go down. In addition, the wild Pokemon were absolutely relentless, and the trainers were down here as a tourist attraction or for practice even more so. Evangeline tried very hard not to cry in relief when one woman offered her healing services rather than asking for another battle.

Bless her heart, she noticed. “That’s why I’ve stationed myself here,” she said sympathetically. “I wish the Elite Four would send a more official nurse station put in. The wild Pokemon and all the trainers can be overwhelming for someone who isn’t prepared for it. Even for some who are!”

“I’ll mention something to Korrina when I get to Shalour City,” she promised. “With my personal experience attached to it. I don’t know what I would have done without you to heal my team.” There was a donation box, and Evangline didn’t hesitate to put some money in it to help this kind girl replenish her Potion supplies.

She hadn’t walked too far past her (and had yet another set of battles) when a familiar voice called her name from down the hallway.

“Hey Ladybird!” Tierno called, running up. “How are you doing in the Reflection Cave?”

Evangeline made a face.

He laughed. “Yeah, I get yah. Maybe I can help you out a little.” He reached into his pocket and held out a TM. “If you use the move Flash, not as many wild Pokemon will turn up,” he explained.

She took the TM, twisting it in her fingers. “Really? That’s handy.”

He grinned, rubbing the back of his head. “I kinda depend on Flash. I’m still not very good at battling, so I keep running into trouble. I sure wish I could be as good as you.”

“Yeah, well, I needed to get some help, so don’t judge yourself too hard,” Evangeline tried to reassure him with a smile. “This cave is hard on us Trainers!”

He smiled back at her, and if she were to guess, he did look a little brighter. “You’re right, I shouldn’t beat myself up too much. Especially with all the trainers around here.”

“Exactly.” She gave a firm nod, glad she wasn’t going to have to argue with him about it. “Have you had a chance to look into the Coordinators like I told you about?” she asked, changing the subject.

“Oh yeah!” he said, and he was eager to talk to her about what he found out as they walked. He paused though when he saw a group of wild Pokemon who were in a weaker level. “Hey, I’m going to see if those Mime Jr have any dance moves I can use.”

Considering they were the baby form of the miming Pokemon, Evangeline was going to say that was a safe bet. She waved him on and decided to keep going to try and get out of these caves sometime today.

Of course, the other trainers seemed to have something else in mind. She sighed when a man in a white gi came running up, bouncing on his toes as he flexed. “Battle?” she guessed.

“Yah,” he agreed. His accent was thick, and neither French or like Evangeline’s. It made understanding him difficult, and he seemed to struggle with her accent in return, but they managed.

Or rather, she managed survival. He had only the one Pokemon, but it took her rotating out her entire team and applying potions in order to get through the fight. She recalled Kakashi as the last one, rubbing her forehead and feeling the cool sweat that had gathered there. “You did great,” she told him, speaking a little slower to help him understand. “Hard battle.”

He laughed, boisterous and loud. Not the least put out that he’d lost, probably because it used her entire team to do it. “Good battle,” he agreed and pointed at her. “Hard opponent.”

She waved her hand sheepishly, making him laugh again. Igor patted her on the back so hard that she stumbled forward to keep on her feet, and went back to his training. And left Evangeline with a dilemma. She didn’t have enough Potions to get everyone to full health, but if she backtracked through the tunnel, it would mean longer in the caves and more battles due to the distance, even with Flash.

Time and battles weren’t worth the risk to her team. She healed up one member enough to face anything she met along the way and went back to the woman from before.

“Let me guess,” she said dryly as Evangeline handed over the team’s Pokeballs. “Igor.”

“At least I won?” Evangeline said with a tentative smile.

“Well, you’re the first this week,” the woman said with a scowl, puttering about her clinic. Rei’s ears laid back and he puffed up when she slammed a box down–this was no Nurse Joy with her easy way about taking care of her patients. But Evangeline wasn’t going to argue with free care in this out of the way spot, and just ran her hand soothingly down the back of Rei’s head to help him calm down. “I swear, that man has caused more incidents than any of the wild Pokemon, and his French is so poor that I can’t tell if he understands me when I tell him to knock it off and go somewhere else for his training.”

“What is his native language?” Evangeline asked curiously.

“Russian,” the woman said blandly. Evangeline could only shake her head, since that was way out of her wheelhouse in being able to help. She took back her team, and went back into the tunnels. There was no sign of Tierno, so he must have already gotten out of the cave. With a deep breath, she tried to push through too, though she did have a pause between battles to eat her lunch and share with her team. With all of the fighting, she was sure they needed the energy!

At last, there was an opening up ahead, and it took all of Evangeline’s will not to run towards. Finally, freedom from the Reflection Cave! Inwardly, she swore that she would not be revisiting, at least in the form of using it as a path between Cyllage City and Shalour City. There had to be an easier way.

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NaNo 18, Day 9: Ninja Daughters Are Prepared!

(Note: I goofed in last time’s post. I thought the Reflection Caves were next, rather than realizing those were the Connecting Caves outside of the gym. I’ve edited the previous blog post to correct this.)

The next morning dawned bright and clear, and Evangeline happily rode her new bike out of town…at least as long as the paths were going to let her. (Nurse Joy had given her a warning on her way out the door.) Route 10 was labeled as Menhir Trail, and it wasn’t a very long road at all according to the map. Of course, neither was Route 9 and look at how long that had taken her. It was littered with strange stones and tall grass–not ideal for navigating with her bike. But it was fun to ride it a little on her way out of town, as thanks for one of the citizens.

She stopped as she passed under a wild berry tree. This seemed like as good of a place as any to switch over to being on her feet. She reached up and snagged a fruit to snack on as she walked.

“Hey, that was mine!”

Startled, Evangeline jerked to look behind her. Stepping out of the tall grass was a brown mammal-type Pokemon, it’s fur striped in a different pattern than Ella’s had been, its ears much bigger. She didn’t need her Pokedex chiming into recognize this newcomer. It was an Eevee.

He growled at her, crouching down like he was prepared to tackle her. “That was my berry!” he repeated himself.

That berry had been way too high for him to reach. But if wanted a fight… “Kagura, help me out,” she said, releasing the sword-shaped Pokemon out to battle.

It wasn’t a hard fight–the Eevee wasn’t as tough as he was making out. But it took effort for Kagura to hold back enough to just weaken him enough for the Pokeball to work. Evangeline held her breath as the ball swayed precariously, the Eevee obviously not happy about the containment. But it was enough. The ball’s button clicked shut in a sealed lock.

“Yes!” she squealed, hugging Kagura. “Thank you, Kagura.” The Ghost-Type flushed and returned to her ball. With a lot of consideration, Evangeline sent one of her more established team members back to the computer storage, letting her hang on to the Eevee’s ball. She released it back out, reaching into her bag for a potion.

He growled at her. Rolling her eyes, Evangeline reached over and held out the berry. “Here,” she said. “Eat this while I treat your scrapes and bruises.”

That got him to stop growling, though it was in shock. “But…” he trailed off, taking the berry in his mouth as she sprayed the potion on his paws and body. “But you didn’t have to give it to me now.”

Reaching up to the tree, she pulled out another berry for herself. “There’s plenty to go around,” she pointed out to him as she took a bite.

His ears wilted. “Not around here…” he complained with a grumble. She offered him another berry and he took it before continuing, “There are so many Eevee, and lots of bird types too.”

Ahh, that explained his crankiness. Covertly feeling his belly, she decided one more berry couldn’t hurt and fetched it for him. “Well, with me, you won’t go hungry,” she promised. “I take good care of my friends. So what do you say? Want to go back to the grasses, or with me on my journey?”

He snorted. “Like that’s a decision. I’m sticking with you.”

Evangeline bit the inside of her cheek. He was so spunky compared to the normal Eevee! “How about Rei, for a nickname?” she asked. She had to explain that what it meant in her home language, but he agreed. Evangeline let him rest inside of his Pokeball now that his stomach was full, shaking her head in amusement at the newest addition to her crew.

Rei (Eevee)

There were only a few other trainers out and about this early, psychics and tourists, but plenty of wild Pokemon were making themselves known. Evangeline wasn’t surprised–it seemed the shortest routes were the busiest! The mysterious stones were taller than she was, very much so, and were like great planks, laid out in a pattern. She carefully touched on as she circled it, feeling chilled at the contact.

She had just passed through a row of hedges when a familiar, eye-searing shade of orange appeared. Hissing between her teeth, she tried to go duck behind the hedge, but it was too late. “Stop right there!” he ordered, running up to her and glaring at her from behind his orange sunglasses. “I remember you! You’re the one who foiled our fossil-finding plans!”

“If you want to call them plans,” she muttered.

He glowered at her, standing up straighter. “And now you’re here, standing around these stones. Do you have any idea what they even are?” His tone was patronizing, derisive. She flinched, which only made him even more smug. “Of course you don’t. You know nothing about the legend of three-thousand years ago that says…” He paused, looking upwards. “Wait, what does it say?”

Evangeline snorted before she could help herself. His effect was ruined, all without her having to do anything.

Swiping angrily at the air, he tried to take back his threatening air. “Oh, whatever! Who cares about all that? It’s time for me to get revenge…with style.”

She grimaced. So a battle it was. Rather than let him try to get the advantage, she selected the appropriate Pokeball. “Kagura, let’s go!”

“Houndour, finish her this time,” he ordered, releasing his own Pokemon.

If only for this guy’s dignity, she wished she could say it was a difficult battle. But it really, really wasn’t. Between Kagura, Hikari, and Etienne, she wiped the floor with his Houndour and Golbat. He reeled back at his defeat, staring at her in shock before it turned to his standard glare. “What? How could I lose again to some punk like you?”

Evangeline crossed her arms, glaring at him. “Substance over style, maybe? All I see is a fashion disaster who can’t even battle well.”

Outraged, he held his hand up to his chest like he was seriously affronted by what she said. “What are you, some kind of Trainer prodigy or something?”

“Or something,” she muttered. But she wasn’t going to explain to (what was effectively) a terrorist!

A beep came from the guy’s wrist. He walked away, tapping at a Holo-Caster as he held it up. She couldn’t see his message or call–that wasn’t how the system worked. All she could hear was his side. Not that he gave away much. “I see… Roger that!” He turned to look at her over his shoulder, sneering. “Time for me to scram, kid.” And he suited action to words.

“Kid?” she repeated, offended herself. She was sixteen! And a certified trainer, one with badges under her belt. (Well, ten year olds used to journey in her home region,  that nonsense was shut down ages ago.) But she didn’t chase after him, not wanting to risk this going from battling an annoying group of thugs to something a lot more dangerous. She had to settle for muttering and adjusting her bag strap. Alerting the police to these jerks was the first thing she was doing, as soon as she got to the next town.

Her bike alongside her, Evangeline tried to navigate the rest of the path in peace. Or well, relative. There were other trainers to fight, lots of wild Pokemon to stir up. And two more of these Team Flare goons to defeat. The first girl went down with very little effort. It was the second and her Gulpin that caused the issue. It didn’t take a genius to recognize it as a Poison type, and Evangeline’s maternal line were experts in them.

It was a value she definitely recognized as she managed to chase off the second girl. “Etienne, Hikari, come here,” she ordered the two poisoned Pokemon, kneeling down as she dug in her bike. Ettiene limped over, his eyes glossy, and Hikari managed to flutter over, looking wilted and dim in color.

She pulled out the white plastic case that had been her mother’s gift to wish her luck on her journey. Flipping the lid open, she grabbed two syringes–one large and thick at the needle base, the other much more delicate and technically meant for the smallest of Pokemon. She had to hope these would work. A pair of latex gloves went on, actually two gloves per hand for safety, and she grabbed two sterilization packs as well. Grabbing the type of antidote needed for sludge-type Pokemon and their particular strains of poison, she inserted Hikari’s syringe first since it wouldn’t take more than a little to dose her.

One wipe carefully cleaned Hikari’s arm, and she inserted the needle with care. The relief on Hikari’s face was almost immediate as the poison’s effects stopped causing her pain. Using the wipe to clean her hands, it took her the rest of the bottle to fill Etienne’s syringe. She decided to apply the poison the same way that she would to a Rhyhorn or the Pontya line–going for the top of the shoulder. Etienne cringed a little as she was forced to throw her weight behind the needle to get it through his skin, but sighed as soon as she pressed the plunge.

“There…” she whispered to the two of them. “That should get you to the Pokemon Center in Geosenge Town.” They nodded and were easily recalled to their Pokeballs, just as the sky opened up to begin to drizzle. Glancing up, Evangeline reached into her bag for her raincoat, but she didn’t bother pulling it on. Instead, she draped it over her head and her bike handles so it would stay on as she jogged towards the stone arches in the distance. The sooner a nurse saw her Pokemon, the happier she would be.