My first story.Please Review and comment on my mistakes so I can fix 'em!It starts out a bit short and bad on the earlier chapters, but rewrites for them are being done as I write this. So, if you don't get too hooked by them, please read on, and give this a chance.Reviews are very much welcome. But, if It's gonna be a bad one, please explain what went off so I can work on it. If It's just like 'Hey your bad I dun liek you 111eleven', then please refrain from reviewing.Anyways, enjoy.Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.Comments, questions, or anything like that? I can be reached by pressing that 'contact' next to my penname and sending me an email.
So much for a quiet day
"So, Phoebe..." Leon asked "Where are you from?"
"Selenia" Phoebe answered "Didn't take too long to get here. If only I could find the guy!" She closed her eyes and looked down "Wait a moment...I'll try again"
"Huh? Try what?" Tiffany seemed curious of what Phoebe was doing.
"Hello? Hello? Can you hear me? Richard? Are you there...?" Phoebe's voice echoed in Leon's head.
"Umm... Phoebe?" Leon told her "You're using telepathy... But you're contacting me"
"Sorry" Phoebe answered as a gust of wind blew past her "It's weird, though. You shouldn't have been able to hear that. I wasn't talking to you... I was trying to see if Richard answered. For a moment there I thought I felt him, but... I guess I didn't"
"Why is finding him so important?" Sasha asked "Do you think he knows where Misha is?"
"Oh, he knows all that happened. Every last bit of it, because he was there when Misha went missing. Not only that, but I've also got a message for him"
"What Kind of message?" Sasha asked, walking closer to her. The wind made her scarf wave.
"Well, that's really a more private matter... Confidential, you could say" Phoebe let out a sigh "This guy's my one hope... The one way I'll know if he really is dead"
"Dead?!" Sasha sounded alarmed "B-but... Misha's not- I mean, He's not... dead, is he?"
"Well, just to make sure... If he were... How'd you react?"
"What kind of question is that?! I'd obviously be very, very sad!"
Phoebe looked down with a sad look on her face before answering "Living in that kind of suspense sucks, huh? Because very, very sad is exactly how I get whenever I consider him being dead for even a little..."
"Hey, Leon..." Tiffany asked him "How'd you react if I died?"
"What the hell are you asking?!" Leon said with a surprised look "Don't even joke about that! I've already lost someone important! How'd you think I'd react?!"
"Relax, relax!" Tiffany patted his shoulder, trying to calm him down "I was just kidding! Please calm down..."
"Okay" Leon said, taking a deep breath "How'd YOU react if I died?"
"Leon, don't ask that!"
They walked down the road, the dark green grass to the sides was swaying because of the wind, and the Rawst Trees were rustling. The air was getting warmer and warmer as they kept moving on. Leon came to a sudden stop when he felt that someone was staring at him.
"Who, I wonder, is this, who walks in front of me?" The Voice echoed in Leon's head.
"What?" Leon looked to the right to notice a Clefable staring at him from amongst the trees. His appearance was somewhat mystifying. He was wearing a white turban with a long red feather, and was holding a cane in his right hand.
"Ah, behold... There do I see the fifteenth one, child of his maker, who chose to make a stand..." The words were echoing in Leon's mind. He figured the Clefable was using Telepathy of some kind.
"Wha... Fifteenth one? Who are you?" Leon thought back. He guessed if the Clefable could talk into his mind, he could hear it as well. Time itself seemed to be slowing down... It was almost as if it was only flowing for the two of them.
"Ah, behold... There do I see the fifteenth one, Aspirant Hero, who does not know his goal has long been reached... Behold, there do I see the fifteenth one, who has named himself Leon. Father of... No... He is no one's father... Not yet... Maybe never..."
"What do you mean?"
"Behold, there do I see one beloved to him, child of a great fighter, who wishes to learn her legacy... Behold, there do I see a tender soul... Bound forever to that of whom she loves... Behold, there do I see a Bloom of the Wild Flower.... Mother of... No... No one's mother either... Perhaps never, if her loved one is too careless..."
"Wild Flower... You're talking about Tiffany? What do you want with her? Leave her alone!"
"Behold, there do I see one noble of wealth and blood, yet adventurous at heart... Behold, there do I see a light to shine upon a darkened soul, and free him from his torment... Behold, there do I see the Beauty, Mother of... No... Another one for whom this is uncertain... "
"Noble? You mean Sasha? What do you want with my friends?!"
"Behold, there do I see a child of the moon, a breaker of tradition, who chose to embrace the sun..."
"I don't think that's any of your business" Phoebe's voice echoed in Leon's head as well.
"Ah... Joined our conversation, did you? Welcome, then... You are in time to hear about yourself... Behold, there do I see a fugitive of her heritage. Friend to the Brave Soldier, and Lover to the Lost one..."
"Yes, I am... Although that" Phoebe's voice came "Was supposed to be PRIVATE"
"Behold, there do I see a runaway... Mother of... Ah, why do I bother? She, too, is childless..."
"Quit messing with my friends! Who the hell are you, anyway?!" Leon thought back.
"Leon! Is everything okay?" Tiffany called from further down the road. Apparently, Leon had stood there, staring into the trees for a while. He had stayed behind. And Sasha, Tiffany and Phoebe had moved on down the road behind him. After heading back to where she was, she, too, noticed the Clefable, and asked "Hey... Who's this guy? Sure looks funny!"
"I am only... A traveler, so to speak..." The Clefable finally opened his mouth.
"So you're a traveler?" Sasha asked him "You don't look like it..."
"Do not be fooled by appearances, young one" The Clefable answered "I am far wiser and special that I look... I, for one, can see into your future..."
"You can?" Tiffany approached the trees "How can you do that?"
"The stars. They talk to me... And tell me what I need to know..."
"I don't buy any of that" Sasha said with a look of disbelief "I don't think you can actually speak to the stars"
"Yeah" Phoebe added "Some of us can look into the future. And even so, it's not so much looking into the future as it is seeing what might probably happen..."
"Oh, you don't believe me?" The Clefable stepped out from the trees "Well... What if I just gave you a little sample, hmmm? What if I told you that you" He looked at Phoebe " That the Mightyena the Pikachu helped you fend off will return and attack you? And that your salvation from his attack shall come from the great beyond?"
"Now that's some real nonsense " Phoebe said, looking away "If you really think the stars told you that, you're a mental case..."
"And what if I told you" The Clefable looked at Sasha next "That you must, by all means, stay away from the beach?"
"Thanks for the warning, but I hate beaches anyway" Sasha answered "Besides, what would I be doing at a beach?"
"What about me?" Tiffany asked in a tone of curiosity "Tell me about my future! Can you? Like...Um.... What lies in store for me and Leon?"
"Well..." The Clefable answered "Give me a moment, now... You're asking me to look into your future together? As a couple?"
"Right. Can you?"
"Well... There's a bright and joyful future for you... A lifetime of happiness, you could say... With its hardships, of course... But, Heed my words, Leon" He said as he looked at the Pikachu "Achieving a lifetime of happiness is quite hard when you are not alive to do so... As for the question you will think of soon... Tonight WILL be the best time to ask it..."
"Question?" Leon said, feeling confused "What are you talking about?"
"As for you, little one" The Clefable looked at Tiffany "Do not let jealousy for the negative one take you over... She needs the care of a friend... And don't feel jealous about the sad one either... She shares a pain all too similar to yours..."
"Negative? Sad?" Tiffany seemed to be just as confused as Leon was "What are you talking about?"
"Ah, it all becomes clear in due time... If I reveal too much, I might alter the course of events"
"You know what? Now we're just wasting time" Leon said as he turned to face the road and began to walk "Tiff, Sasha, Phoebe, you coming?"
"Before you leave... Catch!" The Clefable said as he threw something at Leon, who barely managed to catch it. It was a crystal Ball of some kind. There was an exotic and ancient feeling to it.
"What's this?" Leon asked, looking at the ball.
"Nothing of importance" The Clefable answered "But, if you ever require wisdom, all you need do is ask, and that object might provide..."
"Ummm... Thanks, I guess?" Leon replied as he turned around to face the road once again "Let's move it..."
"One last thing... Phoebe?" The Clefable called to the Espeon, who was starting to walk away as well.
"What?" Phoebe called back, not even looking at him.
"'Shame on he who spoke of fear, for I was born to die'... Down that road" He finished, pointing with his cane in the direction they were heading.
Both Phoebe and Sasha looked back at him when he said this.
"Well... I will see you later... Oh, I almost forgot!" The Clefable said "Miaram"
"Miaram?" Leon asked.
"My name, child. I get the feeling we will be seeing each other more often than you think" He answered, then vanished in a flash.
They stood there, staring at the space Miaram was standing on just a few seconds ago. After a long, silent while, they turned and kept walking down the road.
They all seemed to be mystified by Miaram's words in one way or the other. Both Phoebe and Sasha seemed to be lost in thought, while Leon was focused on one particular part of Miaram's words: What was the question he would think of soon? He was pondering on the subject, no longer even looking ahead. Tiffany was the only one who didn't seem to be concerned or thinking about that strange Clefable's words. She simply made a 'reminder' of sorts: She wouldn't be jealous of the negative or the sad... She wasn't too sure who they were, but she figured she'd find out once she met them. Another relaxing breeze blew by. In spite of that strange encounter. The day still seemed to be quite nice.
"Nice day we're having, huh?" Phoebe said, finally breaking the silence "Nice, fresh breeze..."
"I guess..." Leon answered "There's something life- like about this road... Strange feeling..."
" Hey, are we there yet?" Tiffany asked.
"Not yet" Phoebe replied "Almost..."
"Are we there yet?"
"We're almost there, Tiffany" Leon told her.
"Are we the-"
"I see where this is going" Sasha cut the bunny short "And believe me, I know it's fun when you're the one doing it, but it really isn't to the ones answering"
"It's okay. I know It's fun" The Glaceon answered "I used to do that a lot, too... Which reminds me..." She giggled before continuing "Are we there yet?"
"Well... Yes!" Phoebe said, looking further down the road at the bunch of cream- colored buildings that could be seen on the distance "Just a bit more and we'll get there!"
"Wow..." Leon looked to his side at a large group of tents that were set at the side of the road "What's with all the tents?"
"Oh, yeah, I forgot to tell you..." Phoebe said in an amused tone, looking at the tents "There's this whole exploration craze going on around here..."
"Exploration Craze?" Leon and Tiffany asked at the same time.
"Oh, right!" Sasha said, sweeping away a pebble that was in front of her "Yeah, this place is full of those crazy guys..."
"Crazy guys?" The pebble rolled towards Leon, who kicked it away "Why are they crazy?"
"Well..." Phoebe started, brushing away the pebble that had rolled towards her "This whole area is full of remnants here and there, from an ancient civilization known as the Tenai. All those tents belong to explorers and scholars that are trying to find more remains of it."
"Remains?" Leon seemed curious as of why anyone would care so much about a bunch of carved rocks.
"Yes. Traces of the Tenai" Phoebe answered "... Scrolls, Slates, Tablets... And, the Jackpot: Yuka. That's the one thing they're all looking for."
"Yuka?" Leon's curiosity only grew bigger upon hearing this. There was a strange feeling to the name... Why did it sound so familiar?
"Some kind of lost 'Promised Land'" Sasha answered "It's the dream of every last one of these freaks and geeks to find it"
"Why is this Yuka so important?" Tiffany asked, finally grabbing the pebble and throwing it at a pond they were passing by. The Pebble gave about three hops in the water before sinking "What's with it?"
"Well, the sole fact of finding a lost land would already turn you into a celebrity..." Phoebe answered "Besides, Everyone wants to find it because, according to some ancient tablets that were found, Yuka holds the power to make any wish come true. In fact, this whole thing started when the Tablets were found. Before that, no one paid attention to the idea of discovering the place..."
"Well, any wish coming true does sound kind of cool..." Tiffany said, imagining what she would ask for... Maybe meeting her father? No... Her mother coming back. That was probably the one thing she would wish for...
"It does, doesn't it?" Phoebe replied "But I think it's all a big fat lie... I went looking for it myself once. Found nothing... Still, if you want to fit in once we reach Desina, you'd better start pretending you're interested in it..."
"Pretend?" Tiffany said in an excited tone "I don't have to pretend... I think I'm actually becoming interested in this!"
"Well, no need to rehearse, then" Sasha said, looking ahead at the town " 'cuz we're here."
They were now nearing the entrance to the town. It was a simple fence, with a large wooden arc that led into town. A Granbull and Scizor were standing to the left and right of the arc, respectively. They were wearing badges with a Crescent Moon on their chests.
"Oh, no..." Phoebe muttered when she saw the two that were standing guard further ahead. She waited a few moments, then pushed Leon into the bushes while saying "Change of plans!"
"Wha- What are you talking about?!" Leon yelped in surprise as he was thrown into the bushes by the Espeon. Sasha and Tiffany followed them.
"Okay, look..." Phoebe whispered "Those guys over there can't see me. Okay? They mustn't"
"Quiet!" Phoebe hissed "I can't tell you now...um... Look, I need to get past them. Please help me out..."
"Fine" Leon whispered back "How can we help you?"
"They can't see me, Phoebe. But it's okay if they see an Espeon... I just need... Sasha, could you lend me your scarf?"
"Sure..." Sasha answered as she took her scarf off, revealing the Iron Cross that she kept underneath "But... How does this help, again?"
"Okay..." Phoebe said to herself as she took the blue scarf in her paws and wrapped it around her head. Soon, her face was covered, and only her eyes were visible. "Well, that helps... Good. Now..." She cleared her throat, then spoke "How does this sound?" Her voice was clear and delicate. It was perfectly matching for her.
"You sound... Singer- like" Leon answered. "Fine, soft voice..."
"That's not what I want!" Phoebe replied, clearing her throat once again. She coughed a bit, then spoke again, in a deep, raspy voice "How about now?"
"You sound like a guy" Sasha answered in a weirded-out tone
"Okay, good!" Phoebe said, satisfied "We can move on now..."
They left the bushes and walked towards the gate. As they approached, one of the guards looked at them.
"Okay. Here goes... Sasha, come with me" Phoebe told the Glaceon via Telepathy.
"Alright" Sasha thought back as she walked closer to Phoebe. They walked ahead of Leon and Tiffany and arrived to where the guards were.
"Hold it!" The Granbull strongly pushed Phoebe back "Have you seen an Espeon by the name of Phoebe?"
"Um... Why would I have seen her?" Phoebe answered, trying to make her voice as deep and raspy as she could.
The Scizor approached them now "Well... You're an Espeon... A strange looking one at that..."
"My name is Cairo" Phoebe answered "I hail from Sol, to the south. And this is my friend, Blanche Givral" She pointed at Sasha "We are here to find a Fire Stone for my son... I know nothing of no Phoebe. Now, please, let us pass"
The Granbull looked at the two for a moment, thinking, before finally answering "Fine... You look suspicious, but... I guess that's true for anyone from Sol... Come on through. Just be careful, cuz the Mightyena have been coming out of the forest and are practically in control of the town's streets. Watch yourself. Eh, sunny?" He gave Phoebe another strong push before stepping aside.
Phoebe and Sasha walked into the town. Leon and Tiffany were about to follow when both guards stood in their way.
"Hold it, there!" The Granbull pushed Leon back as well.
"What?! What about us?!" Leon asked the giant that was standing in front of him.
"Easy, now" The Granbull told him "I just want to know if you've seen an Espeon named Phoebe"
"We haven't" Tiffany answered "Why? What did she do?"
"What she did is none of your business, squirt" The Gigantic dog answered "What should be is the very, very nice reward for helping us find her"
"Well... No. Sorry." Leon answered "I haven't seen any Espeon by that name"
"Really?" The Scizor approached "Because you look suspicious..."
"That's what we say about everyone!" The Granbull told him "Let's let 'em through. They don't look like they've got anything to hide... Listen, you two. You have to be careful: The Mightyena have been coming from the forest in force recently. And they take what they want, so you might want to stay indoors if you can. Come on in" Both guards stepped aside and let them through.
Leon and Tiffany quickly walked past them and rejoined Phoebe and Sasha, who were sitting on the other side, waiting for them.
"Well... We're in" Leon said, then looked at Phoebe "Now, do you mind telling us what, exactly was that all about?"
"First thing's first" Phoebe told him, then started to walk down the street along the cream- colored houses and buildings "I need a place to stay"
Leon, Tiffany and Sasha followed her down the street. Along the way, Leon noticed Phoebe and Sasha weren't lying when they mentioned all the 'exploration craze': The walls of almost every building were lined with notices requesting scholars or muscle to assist on expeditions and searches. Most of them, like Phoebe mentioned, were looking for Yuka. As they kept walking, they came upon the body of a Mightyena lying on the ground. He had a scar near his right eye, and, from the look of his face, he had spent his last moments in true terror.
"Whoa..." Tiffany just stood there, staring at the body before them.
"Well, from the looks of it, someone chose to fight back.." Phoebe said as she walked past the dead dog, not even looking at him "Let's take a right here"
They turned right and went into an alley. At the end was a house hat stood out from the rest. It was painted a mixture of yellow and pink, with two windows on what seemed to be the second floor.
"Here it is" Phoebe told the ones behind her as they approached the house "But, first of all" She took the scarf off her face and handed it back to Sasha "Thanks... Now, moving on..." She walked up to the house's door, raised her Lavender- colored paw, and gave the door a soft knock.
"Go suck a dick" The answer came from the other side of the door.
"Well, sorry, Heathcliff" Phoebe answered. Her voice was back to being a soft, delicate one "That sounds more like the kind of thing you'd be doing"
"Wait... Who's this?" Whoever was on the other side of the door asked.
"It's Phoebe! Open up, numbnuts!"
"Whoa! Sorry!" The door opened, revealing the one Phoebe was talking to: He was a Jolteon. He was surprisingly thin, and the hair on his forehead was combed downwards in a way that covered his left eye. "Hey, Phoebe. Come on in" He said "I forgot you were coming... Well, It's all ready for you. In fact, you know what? It's yours"
"Huh? Why? Where are you going?" Phoebe asked him
"I'm off to stay with my family in Blitzheim" The Jolteon answered "I just don't see too much of a future in this town, what with the Mightyena taking what they want and all... And the guard, going around, asking for you... I'll tell you, Pheebs. You owe me big time for not telling them about you"
"Oh... Well, thanks, I guess..." Phoebe sighed "So I'll... Wait! That bag you're carrying..." She looked at a large bag the Jolteon was carrying, hanging at his side "You're not going to Blitzheim! You're off to look for it again, aren't you?"
"'It'? I don't know what you're talking about!"
"Yuka, genius. What else?"
"Okay, why can't I do both?!" The Jolteon asked "I'll head off to Blitzheim, and I'll look for Yuka on my way! Back to the subject, though. House's yours, Phoebe. Take care of it, okay, sunshine?" He finished and began to walk away.
"Hey..." Sasha approached Phoebe, looking at the departing Jolteon "He's good- looking! You said his name was Heathcliff?"
"Yeah" Phoebe answered "Why?"
"Oh, nothing" Sasha said, still looking at the silhouette of Heathcliff vanishing in the distance "Just wanting to know what I'll write on my 'to-do' list"
"I wouldn't bother" Phoebe told her "He wouldn't be interested in you"
"What? Why? You think I can't get him to go have some fun with me?"
"No, It's not that..."Phoebe looked at the Glaceon when she said this " It's just Heathcliff's... Well... How can I say it?... He's the kind of guy who likes to get things going with other guys, if you get what I mean..."
"Oh, I see..." Sasha said in a slightly disappointed tone "Such a waste... Well, any guy he picks for a mate is very lucky, I guess..."
"Oh, he is, he is... But where are my manners? It's my house now, so... Come on in!" She called Leon and Tiffany, who were still distanced from the house to come in "Welcome to my... Humble home, I guess"
"Well, I appreciate the hospitality" Leon answered. The house was designed in a simple way, and yet, it seemed to have an amazing amount of space. The room had a yellow carpet, with a single, old- looking couch in the center, pointing at the door. There was another door at the end of the room, and a single stair leading to the second floor.
"By the way" Phoebe said, jumping on the couch and curling up on it "Where are you guys heading off to? Planning to stay for long?"
"We're heading for Selenia" Sasha answered, jumping on the couch and curling up on the other end, then looking at Phoebe "We're taking the train here to get there quicker"
"Selenia? Funny coincidence, huh? That's where I'm heading for if I don't find Richard. What are you going there for?"
"Find out more about my mom!" Tiffany answered, sitting on the couch between Sasha and Phoebe. Leon was the only one who didn't get to take a place "You know... The Wild Flower?"
"Whoa, she was your mom?" Phoebe asked in disbelief "She looked so young..."
"Well, Tiffany is young" Leon said, approaching the couch, sitting on the ground in front of them "And she wants to know about her. So... I'm helping her get there. And Sasha wants to get to Selenia to find out more about her brother... And yours goals seem to align there."
"Well if you want to take the train, you'll have to wait until tomorrow, when it comes back" Phoebe told him "If you want to, you can stay here... There's two rooms on the second floor"
"I call one for me and Leon!" Tiffany got up and ran upstairs "Leon, hurry!" She called him.
"Wow... She's got a lot of energy, doesn't she?" Phoebe asked, amused at the sight of the bunny running upstairs as fast as she could.
"Yes, she does" Leon answered, running up the stairs and calling Tiffany back "I'm coming!"
Phoebe and Sasha were left alone on the couch. After a while, Sasha finally spoke.
"So... What was that 'Cairo' thing all about?"
"Little name I took when I didn't want others to notice me... I mean, I tend to stand out a lot...Like you already noticed with those guards..." Phoebe answered " And the name I picked out for you? You'd laugh if I told you the story behind it..."
"Why, what's with it?"
"Well... It was about two and a half years ago, or so... During the war... We were ordered to take down one very, very perverted Skuntank... Now, we head the power to do it. Problem was, he'd only let Females get that close to him. Not exactly for talking... So... They picked a three- girl team from our unit. Now, I was the only female in our unit... And I couldn't go alone. So, Richard and your Brother bravely stood up to things... At least Misha did. Richard was forced to. So, we got to it: A three- girl team made by two males and a female"
"What?" Sasha seemed curious on the matter "How could they- Nooo...." She giggled under her breath before asking "You mean they-"
"Yup" Phoebe answered "For one day, there was no Richard Raymonds or Misha Frost... There was, however, a Lucia Lionheart and a Blanche Givral... What's that tell you?"
"Oh, I don't believe it!" Sasha burst into laughter. She couldn't help laughing at the thought: Her brother was pretty open- minded, sure, but... To go as far as to do that... After she finally managed to catch her breath, she asked "And how did that go?"
"Well, the Skuntank went on to where we were... There were, like, twenty females in there or so. And, guess who he picks? None other than cute, strong Blanche" They both laughed for a while before Phoebe continued "So, Misha-I mean, Blanche gets to be the lucky one for the night"
"You don't mean they-"
"Nah. We got there just in time. A little while more, and that awkward moment could have become something worse. Neither Misha nor Richard wanted to talk to me for the next two weeks"
"Wow... Can't believe he'd do that..."
"Your brother was a really special one" Phoebe said in a sad tone "I used to hate the world... When I joined in for the war, all I wanted to do was die... And I met him. He was different from all the others... He understood me. At first, I was a bitch at him... Insulted him, made fun of whatever he did wrong..." Her voice was quivering "But in the end... I just realized how wonderful he was..." She finished, looking down with a vacant expression.
"You loved him, didn't you?" Sasha asked her. All Phoebe did was nod.
At that same moment, upstairs, Tiffany was arriving, followed by Leon, to their room.
"So... This room!" She approached a door on the left end of the small Hallway "Or, maybe... This room?" She approached the one on the right end, then headed back to the left "Well, but this room... What do you think, Leon?"
"I'm sure they're both good for what they were meant to be used for, Tiffany" The Pikachu answered, watching the Buneary pace back and forth between both doors.
"Come on! Pick one!"
"Okay... The left one"
"Left it is!" She opened the door on the left end, revealing the room. It was painted white, with a yellow stripe at the point where the wall joined the floor, and another one where it joined the ceiling. A single, regular- sized bed, with a smaller, round one on top of it. There was what looked like a power generator on a corner by the bed. This was probably Heathcliff's room. A single, round window looked out at the street form the middle of the room. They both walked in and put their bags down by the wall.
"He- Hey... Nice room!" Leon said with a smile, looking at the generator.
"I guess, if you say so..." Tiffany answered , heading for the window "Leon, look!" She looked out the window at the town. From here, it was possible to see how large the town actually was. Several cream- colored buildings were spread as far as her eyes could see. A few different- colored ones stood out from them. In the distance, it was possible to see a large forest "Come here and have a look! This place is huge!"
Leon approached the window and peeked out along her. She was right. The town was big, sure but, he wasn't so impressed. Lizean was way bigger... Still, he liked the wonder with which Tiffany looked at things "It's pretty big..."
"You know what I'm thinking?" Tiffany leaned closer to him as she said this "A place this big has got to have plenty of spots where we can go have fun..."
"Plenty of fun, or romantic places..."
"Must be full of them..."
"You still don't get what I'm trying to say, do you?" She stepped away from him and gave him a stern look.
"You're saying... That you really like this town?" Leon answered.
"I mean a date, genius" She answered. The look she was giving him hadn't changed.
"Well, Okay..." Leon answered "Where do you want to go?"
"I don't know... Surprise me!" She answered, regaining her smile "Make it a great first date, okay?... And, Leon..." She said in an amorous tone "Have you noticed... It's the first time we're able to be alone since Jacques stepped in, back at the Mansion?"
"Wow, you're right... I hadn't noti-"
He was cut short as this time she started things. She took him in her arms and pulled him towards her, resulting in an all- too surprising kiss for him. She was pressing her body tightly against his. Her soft, warm fur was so close to him... Leon couldn't deny it: He was getting aroused from this.
"Um... Leon?" She pulled away from him a little, and said nervously "You really like me, don't you?"
"What makes you say that?" Leon asked, feeling equally nervous: He knew why.
"Well, because..." She stepped back, looking at the Pikachu's erection "Because of that"
"Oh, no..." Leon said, embarrassed "Don't take this the wrong way, I..."
"It's okay. I'll just... I'll be downstairs, you just think about the date, okay?" She answered; face flushed a deep red as she ran out of the room.
"Oh, man..." Leon said to himself "Nice going, jackass... You blew it!"
"I wouldn't call that 'blowing it'" Came the voice from behind him.
"WHA?!" Leon jumped, startled, as he turned around, covering his exposed member with his hands. He spotted the source of the voice: It was Miaram. "What are you doing here? Get out, get out!"
"Oh, please... So childish, covering yourself up like that. It is nothing I wouldn't have seen before!" Miaram answered "And I am here to speak with you. About things. Things that we might discuss now that Phoebe is not here to listen... "
"Okayy..." Leon said, calmly, as he took his hands off his crotch. His hard- on was gone now. The scare seemed to have been enough to make it go away. "About what things?"
"First off all: You did nothing wrong right now. It was love, truly. But... You have to make this date she wants perfect. Ask the two Eon females downstairs if you want advice."
"Why can't you just give me the advice yourself?"
"I might see the future" Miaram answered "I might know the past... I might live on, by time unbeaten, but a feminine mind still escapes my grasp... So, now, you must think of a question. Think, now... 'How might I let her know, that my eyes see only her? How might I let her know, that to me she is most fair?'"
"A question... A question..." Leon thought "What if I do what III did... He found a mate... I know what my question is" He said "Wi-"
"Don't say it!" Miaram interrupted "Ask that question tonight, then take her on that date she wants. Now, for the matter I needed to discuss..."
"There are three in this town right now. Who are connected by a single figure in their pasts. You have met two of them. You need to find the third one. He is of great importance in the journey that awaits you"
"I wish you'd talk sense" Leon answered "I don't get squat about what you say"
"Now, now" Miaram answered, amused "There is no fun in a riddle if you know what the answer is from the start. Perhaps you should look into that old book you have more often... If only it wasn't so worn- out and hard to read... Ah, if only one of the Tenai who wrote it was here to help you... Unfortunately, I'm running on a tight schedule... And I am still miffed for you not living up to your promise"
"What?" Leon was more confused now. He didn't remember ever seeing the Clefable before that day. Let alone, promising anything "What are you talking about? I made no promise!"
"I believe your exact words were 'I promise. The moment I am finished, I shall travel to our home, and stop the dormant menace'."
"Dormant menace? What are you talking about?"
" I know you can hear me, Elys" Miaram said "And revered as you might be, and committed as I am to my duty, I still resent what you did"
"Elys?" Leon asked, now more mystified than ever "What's that?"
"hmm... I have... Other matters to attend to. I will see you later... And remember: Your question must be asked tonight"
A few minutes later, Leon was walking down the stair, heading for the couch by the entrance where Tiffany, Sasha and Phoebe were.
"Hi, Leon" Tiffany told him, still blushing a little "So... Did you think something up?"
"Oh, I did" He answered "I've got a great surprise for you... By the way, did you see how beautiful some of the Rawst trees are? From our bedroom's window, they're perfectly visible." He knew this was a stupid way to try to distract her, but it was the best he thought of at the moment.
"Well... Okay, I guess..." Tiffany answered, suspicious of the way Leon was acting "I'll go see... "
Leon waited until she was gone to address the two Eons that were curled up on the couch "Okay... Phoebe, Sasha... You're girls"
"Clever observation, Leon" Phoebe answered.
"Yeah, what gave us away?" Sasha added.
"Sorry. Well" Leon started "Tiffany wants a date, okay? She says she wants me to surprise her, so I thought... Maybe you can give me some tips... Some advice...You know?"
"Oh, isn't it endearing?" Sasha approached Leon and whispered something into his ear."You can try..."
"Good idea" Phoebe said via Telepathy "And then we can..."
"Okay, that's pretty good!" Leon told them "Now, I just need to think up a good place to start..."
"There's a good place near here" Phoebe answered "Its called 'The Tainted Grace'... Fine place to relax. It's got room for everyone... From Hazy-Minded Drunks to Lost-in-love couples."
"Hey, Leon!" Tiffany walked down into the room "You're right. They're amazing... I can't get over how big this place is!"
"If you think this place is big, you'll probably get lost in Selenia" Phoebe looked at the Bunny.
"And speaking of Selenia..." Leon said, noticing the chance to inquire about the ones who were looking for Phoebe "Those guys who were looking for you were from the Selenian Guard... Why do they want you?"
"Okay..." Phoebe sighed, then took a deep breath, and finally spoke "Remember how I told you my mother flipped when she heard I joined the army? Well, she flips about a lot of stuff... And she's really influential. You can see why she can have the guard look for me... Now, look at the time! We'd better get going, Leon!" She finished in a hurry, trying to change the subject as she jumped off the couch and headed for the door.
"Why? Where are we going?" Tiffany asked.
"We" Leon answered "Are heading for the beginning of a great date"
They left the house and began to walk down the street. They took a right and headed further down the road, until they were nearing a deep lime- green colored- building. Something had gone wrong about the weather. All of a sudden, the sky had gotten cloudy, and the wind was blowing violently towards the forest.
"Wind's gone crazy!" Leon said, walking against the powerful gust.
"There's something wrong about this wind!" Phoebe replied "It's not just blowing! It's loaded with hate! That Lime Green building there's the place! Let's go in, quick!"
As they approached it, they were passed by a Growlithe who was running easily against the wind, calling out to no one in particular "FREEDOM! PEACE AT LAST!"
Leon and the others walked into The Tainted Grace. Leon had it planned. He needed a good place, a calm place where he could start making his plan work. The plan: The perfect date. The problem: The first sight he got when he walked into the place: An All- too familiar Lucario and Gallade were sitting by the counter.
"Wait..." Leon whispered at Tiffany "That's... III... Oh, great..."
"Don't turn around" III warned V "But someone we're looking for just walked in here..."
"Oh, great" V said as he and Leon saw each other "So much for a quiet day..."
"What are you doing here?" Leon asked, surprised to see his former allies there.
"We're just enjoying a Day- off" V answered "I don't want to waste it beating you up, so, please, go away..."
"I guess Duty comes first" III said as he got up and walked towards Leon, looking down on him. And he was able to do so all too well. He was easily double or triple Leon's size "Quick question: Are you coming back to us?"
"You know the answer to that" Leon told the Lucario, getting ready to fight "I'm going to stop you. It doesn't matter how bad I might get hurt!"
"You think you can take me on.,." III said, making an amused huff, the put his fists together, and spread his arms. On his hands appeared a large, Bone- Like staff made from his Aura "Let's see how right you are..."
"Boys... If you're gonna be fighting, please do so outside" Fay told the two "We're not done paying the bills from our last Bar room brawl"
"Got it" III answered, spinning the staff in his hand "Outside, then"
They left The Tainted Grace, and were now standing, Leon on one side of the road, with Tiffany, Sasha and Phoebe behind him. And III on the other side, V standing against the lime green wall behind him. The Hatesome and furious wind that had been blowing a few minutes ago was gone now. Although the sky was still cloudy.
"So... How do those two know each other?" Phoebe asked Sasha, who was standing next to her, looking at the Pikachu and Lucario who were about to face off.
"Let's just say" Sasha answered "Leon's got a lot of explaining to do once we're through with this..."
They fell silent when III took a step forward, gripping the staff with both his hands.
"Do you remember how to do this?" III asked him "Do you remember Bone Rush? Or do I have to teach you once again, traitor?"
"Right" Leon said as he, like III, put his hands together, and created a smaller version of the staff. Unlike III's, which was a dark blue, his was almost white. Small Lighting Bolts came from it.
"Good" III answered "We can just skip the formalities, then. Let's see how much of what I taught you you remember!" And, saying no more, he leapt towards Leon, who reacted barely in time to block his strike. He kept throwing blow after blow at Leon, who was having a hard time blocking all the strikes. "You're forgetting what I told you!" III said in a teacher- like way as he kept maing his staff crash against Leon's "You! Are! Focusing! Too! Much! On! Your! Right!" He marked each word with a strike from his staff, before making a sudden left sweep and sending Leon flying against the wall. "Get up and fight" He said, spinning the staff around on his hand again.
Leon got up, growling "I'm not done yet!" Then leapt against III. This time, he had the offensive. III was now the one blocking the smaller Pikachu's blows, who jumped and slammed the staff against his in a downwards swing. He kept hitting, not noticing III had learned his style by now.
"Predictable" III said as he suddenly stepped aside, making Leon miss, and then hit him again, sending him flying against the same wall "You don't remember anything. Such a shame. Seems like I wasted my time, teaching you"
Leon got up again, but this time, he tried to remember what III had taught him. He had to study his opponent, learn how to react to his movements... Search an opening... He got it. He ran at III, but stopped right in front of him. When III made a horizontal sweep, Leon jumped and went for him with a downwards swing. III was barely quick enough to react. Leon then tried to hit him, but, when III stepped aside, Leon stepped back, just in time to avoid III's counter, a lower sweep than usual. This was his chance: III was now at Leon's height since he had to duck to make the sweep. Leon gave another vertical strike, this time without the need of jumping. III managed to block it, but Leon had the upper hand now. He kept slamming his staff against III's. Over and over, until III's knee failed, and he fell to the ground, his staff disappeared. Before he hit the ground, Leon hit him with enough force to send him rolling away, but not enough to send him flying like he did.
III got up and spoke with a satisfied grin "It's good to see you remembered something, but you forgot the most important of my teachings..." He stretched his arms out, hands spread as wide as he could, as three staffs appeared on each hand "Always leave the best for last" He jumped at Leon and slammed all six staves full against his, causing Leon's staff to shatter and vanish, and sending him away with far greater strength than before. Leon went rolling against a wall and stopped in a position that made it seem like he was sitting against it. "And now, for the final blow" III was about to jump when he was hit on the chin with huge strength. The vertical motion of the attack even launched him a little into the air.
"Leave Leon alone!" Tiffany said, paws held in front of her face, ready to fight. Her tone left it clear: She was angry.
"Ow..." III rubbed his chin, feeling the pain from the attack he had just been hit with, then looked at Tiffany "Hmph... You're the Wild Flower's daughter, aren't you?" His question met no answer except from Tiffany's angry stare "Good Sky Uppercut... You're strong... No doubt something you got from your parents... I was close with your mother, so I chose to ignore you... But, now, you have become my enemy. No mercy, and let us fight to the death"
"Try anything like that, and I'll put my foot up your ass" The threat came from behind where Tiffany and III were standing. They both turned around to see Zoey standing there, ready to fight.
"Aunt... Aunt Zoey!" Tiffany said, surprised.
"Hey, Tiff. How you doing, girl?" Zoey told her "You should check on your friend. He took quite a beating"
"Right!" Tiffany rushed to where Leon was. Sasha and Phoebe were already there, next to him.
"Now, listen... I don't know what you're trying to pull here, Bernard" Zoey growled at III "But this girl is alone in the world with her mom gone. Now, Alice might not be here to protect her daughter, but I am!"
"Fine, then... Bring it!" They leapt at each other. Their attacks were about to meet when they both came to a sudden stop: V was standing between the two, elbow blades extended: One stopping III's staff, and the other stopping Zoey's fin.
"Will you please STOP it already?!" V said, annoyed "It's supposed to be a damn day- off! And now I suddenly have to watch how two of my friends are going to kill each other?! Let's just stop now, please! Before I have to get rough on you both!"
"Fine" III stepped back.
"Fine" Zoey stepped back as well.
"Good" V withdrew his blades and took a deep breath "Now get over there and help XV up... It was your fault the fight started, III. If you had just ignored him like I told you..."
Both Zoey and III walked to where Leon and Tiffany were. III approached Leon and held out his hand to help him up.
"Thanks" Leon muttered, grabbing III's hand and getting up "You're still in a league of your own...Master"
III chuckled when he heard this "Well, you're not bad. Held out against me for longer than many others would have. Including IV... I guess I should head back inside... One last thing. Since you probably wouldn't talk to us even if we were there: If you chose to walk this path, follow it to its end. If you think that stopping us is the proper thing to do, do your best to stop us. I promise I will do my best to stop you, as well. But don't ever give room to second thoughts. There is no honor for the one who walks two paths or serves two masters... He will never reach the end of either path, and he will never please either master..." Once he was finished, he headed back into the Grace "V, you coming?" V didn't answer, he simply walked in behind him.
"He's always so weird, that one..." Zoey said, looking at III head back into the Tainted Grace. "I can see you're busy... See you later, Tiff"
"Wait! Aunt Zoey! Where are you going?" Tiffany called out to the Floatzel, who was walking away as well.
"I'm just... Heading off. I'll see you around. Maybe today, maybe tomorrow... Maybe you get to Selenia and learn of your mom... Or Arceus knows when..."
An hour had passed, and Night had already fallen. III and V were back on their seats at the counter. Leon and Tiffany were sitting in a Loveseat by the window, while Phoebe and Sasha were sitting by a table next to theirs.
The atmosphere was calm with all the bustle from the explorers that came there gone. Leon knew it. That was just the moment. And what if he was wrong? It was nighttime now. And, freaky as he was, Miaram said that night was the perfect moment for the question. And so, he began what he had dubbed 'operation Perfect Night' And he decided to start it in what, to anyone with common sense, should have been the very last step...
"Whatcha looking at?" III asked V, who looked back from the counter to see what Leon was doing.
"Seeing what the kid does" V answered.
"Okay... And what is he doing?"
"Well... He's getting up... He's... Bowing..? The Hell?"
"Bowing?" III asked "Can you hear what he's saying?"
"Well... Now he's kneeling... What's he saying? He's saying... 'Will you be my mate?'"
"Gee, V" III laughed "Thanks, but I'm not that kind of guy..."
"Shut up!" V punched III in the arm "I think XV's... Proposing"
"Uh... Wrong move" Sasha shook her head, looking at the Kneeling Pikachu. "He went for it too soon"
"Dead wrong" Phoebe added.
"Leon... What?" Tiffany stared, wide- eyed at him "I mean... What Are you... Like, for life?"
"That's my question" Leon answered "Will you be my mate?"
"Leon, don't... Don't take this the wrong way... We don't really know each other that well... I mean, we've known each other for less than a month! There's so much we don't know about each other..."
"I know... But I like what I know of you. And, what I don't know, I'll learn over time... What do you say?"
Tiffany took a deep breath "What do I say? Well, Leon... My answer is..."