From: Adrian Tymes <wingcat@soca.com> Subject: Re: [PW!] [NC] To The Stars Above! (continuation of Bottled Rockets) Date: Thursday, April 22, 1999 9:09 PM Mobius101 wrote: > Meanwhile, elsewhere in the ship, Doppler in the guise of a Rocket wandered > about Giovanni's control center, humming a little tune. He smiled as he > casually walked to the back and began calling up various screens. A little > adjustment here and there and he cleared the systems again. > > Giovanni was busy gloating over his victory over Seth and crew though his > monitor. Now whistling to himself, Doppler strolled on past Giovanni once > again and disappeared into one of the chairs. His eyes lit a bright yellow and > were the last thing to disappear. "This isn't going to go quite as you expect > it to, *sir*," He snickered to himself. "No plan survives contact with the enemy." Doppler froze in the middle of the chair. "GET HIM!" Giovanni ripped the chair out of its mount as if it had been secured with tin foil. The other Rockets punched holes in the chair, ripped out gobs of stuffing, and waved the gobs in front of their Pokedexes. Doppler retreated further and further into the chair, trying desparately to avoid the humans' probing hands, until eventually Giovanni's free hand pulled him out. Doppler was in a Poke ball before he could react, but a mere Poke ball could not hold him. The ball opened up after only a second, disgorging the red energy that was Doppler... ...only for another, perfectly positioned Poke ball to catch it. This ball, too, only held him for a second, but then Doppler was back in the original ball. Giovanni laughed as two of his assistants seemed to play hot potato with Doppler. "Try all you want, Doppler; *no pokemon* has yet to escape this trap...even if not many have ever fallen into it." Doppler would have replied had he had a mouth, but instead, just turned himself 90 degrees on his next escape. The assistants only barely managed to shift positions in time. "Nice try. You'd probably get out once we tired...but I can not have that." Giovanni took Doppler's ball and squeezed it tight, not letting Doppler wedge it open even a crack. His muscles visibly strained, but Doppler could gain no opening, for the moment. "I know this Poke ball can not hold you forever, and it will not capture your mind or heart. No matter. You are but bait. Gary: put me on bottlewide intercom." One of Giovanni's most trusted assistants saluted. His lifelong membership in Team Rocket had been a carefully guarded secret, ever since Giovanni wooed him almost straight from his grandfather's knee. Even more of a secret, though, was the fact that he had long dreamt of the day when Giovanni would be no more. Today would be that day, he was sure of it. Giovanni cleared his throat after Gary nodded. "Attention Mimic: I hold all the cards now. I have your son. I have his companions. I have your brother. And I have disposed of your lover." ****** Somewhere in the bottle, Maria stumbled at that last word. James blinked. "Maria?" "I'm fine." "Why did you..." And. It. Clicked. "By God...Maria...is it true?" "James..." "Is that the reason I could never remember that night? Because I wasn't there?" "James, please..." "Is that where Seth's powers came from? His real father?" Maria turned, tears in her eyes, and gave James a pleading look. "Please don't say it." "What?" "Don't say...our love...was based on a lie..." "Maria..." He smiled. "It doesn't matter. I love you. No matter what the circumstances of our marriage turn out to have been, I have loved you ever since." "Liar." James blinked. "You...I shamed you into it. *sniff* I had a major crush on you, but all you wanted was to run away - away from me, and to HER. Our marriage was never based on love." "So?" It was Maria's turn to blink. "Maria, I said it doesn't matter. No matter how we came to be, I know that right now, I would rather be with you than with anyone else in the world, or even off the world. Including Jessie. I. Love. You." It is said that in the history of the world, there have been six perfect kisses. Had it not been for its location, this would have been the seventh. And only a security camera observed it. ****** A security camera that was being monitored by two Rockets in the control room. Fortunately for them, no one else noticed the smiles on their faces, or if they did, assumed they were just affected by Giovanni's contagious happiness. "Surrender now, Mimic, or I shall dump all of those you hold dear into space." "Weren't you going to do that anyway, sir?" Giovanni slammed the "end transmission" button, and stared daggers at Gary. "You...may have just cost me..." "Mimic here!" He lifted his gaze from the profusely sweating Rocket, to the clone of himself in one corner of the room. It was a perfect physical duplicate, as always, but Mimic was making no attempt to even try to duplicate Giovanni's mannerisms. Where Giovanni exuded civilized control, the being in front of him acted unashamedly natural, casually leaning against the wall, displaying some Persian fur almost like a badge. Giovanni raised an eyebrow at that. His own Persian never shed on him. He had taught it better. In all of his memory, Giovanni could not once recall a single physical mismatch in Mimic's impressions. #Oh well,# he thought, #there's a first time for everything. And a last.# "So, what Giovanni want? Please, no long speech. Mimic hear enough speech, boast about grand plans, and-" "Go to your friends," Giovanni interrupted. "And take this with you." He held out Doppler's Poke ball, and pointed to a hole in the floor. "I want all of you in one place." "Ok, sure. C'mon, Doppler." Mimic snatched the Poke ball. Giovanni blinked as Mimic left. The way he spoke...almost as if he *knew*...but no matter. Dead was dead. He nodded to his bridge crew, who followed Mimic down the hole. He counted the members, and noticed he was down two just as a Mega Punch intercepted the base of his skull. ****** Seth, Aerie, Slasher, Jessie, and Meowth stepped away from the hole which opened in the ceiling. 'Giovanni' was the first one out, but before anyone could make a move to fight, he changed into Seth. Several Rockets followed, each one pointing a Missingno at one of the first six occupants of the room. Mimic tossed the Poke ball to Aerie. "Might want let father out. Mimic hope Giovanni no crush Doppler inside ball." Aerie caught the ball, then caught it anew as she strove to carry it as far from her body as possible. "DOPPLER? But, my father's human..." "As human as Mimic. Pokehuman? Either way, is your father, niece." Slowly, disbelieving, Aerie cracked open the ball... ...then dived away when it exploded in an angry red blaze of energy that snarled even before it coalesced into a Charizard. "GIOVANNI!!!!!!!!!!" The Rockets smiled. "Don't try a thing, Doppler." Several had turned their weapons to cover him the instant he appeared. "Giovanni gave explicit orders to kill anyone who tries to be a hero." A few seconds passed in silence. "Hey, boss, you there?" More silence. Gary shrugged. "The speakers must be broken, so I'll make things brief." He put his hand to the wall, which faded to reveal a high-tech looking thingamabob with a pointy end. (Or, at least, such was the highly technical description Meowth first thought of upon seeing it.) "So...err...what's it do?" Meowth took a step towards it, only to be motioned away by the sole Rocket who had drawn the short straw to cover him. "It's a disposal system. Based on the same principles as Missingnos, it shifts things through time. All the tests so far have scattered whatever was sent across an hour or two. I saw Giovanni use it on someone, once, and it's not a pretty way to go. First his head reappeared, and bled to death. Then his body appeared. Then his arms, and finally his legs. And Giovanni said that was one of the more intact victims." He shuddered. "I never should've stolen the prototype from my grandpa's lab. Anyway, Giovanni wants some data on the exact dispersal patterns. And, just in case you *do* come back in one piece, you'll reappear in orbit. A few minutes ahead or behind, it doesn't matter; you'll reappear right here, but the bottle won't be here." Idly, Mimic glanced at one of the Rocket's wristwatches. #Just under a full revolution around the sun, to move Earth into place...# Aerie gasped. "How horrible." "Don't worry. The boss only wants Mimic, Doppler, and Seth, the three Dittos. Us humans...and *normal* pokemon...get to live to see the Earth again." "Except James and Maria," Jessie growled. "Yeah, well, I'm sure Giovanni will let you give 'em a good funeral, at least." Gary shoved Mimic so hard, his hand sank into Mimic's back. There, where it could not be seen by anyone, his hand briefly curled into a thumbs up. Mimic shook, but Gary saw a nod of acknowledgement. Then, the two- second act over, Mimic stumbled towards the device. "No, wait!" Aerie took a step, only to be shoved back by the side of the barrel of one Rocket's Missingno. Doppler was slowly marched towards the device, but Seth refused to move. Those Rockets who were not herding Seth, or guarding one of the others, grouped around Seth, and began bashing him with the butt of their weapons. Aerie shook with rage. "No...nononogetawayfromhim..." ****** Up on the bridge, two Rockets watched the scene via yet another security camera. One massaged his hand and kept one eye on an unconscious Giovanni; the other held a box with one button in one hand, while petting an aged Slasher with her other. "You know," the latter mused, "I remember feeling something unlock at this moment. I always wondered just what that was...until now." She pressed the button. ****** Far below, in a cave in Mount Moon, a small, radio-controlled bomb went off. It was not a powerful bomb by any means. No one, human or pokemon, was close enough to hear, see, or feel it. There was, in all, only one direct casualty of the bomb: the ball it had been planted right next to. ****** "...hyPEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEER..." Only after the intense, burning light faded, leaving a void where about half of Seth's assailants had been, did everyone remember to blink. "...beam?" Momemtarily exhausted, Aerie fell into Jessie, who recovered just in time to catch her. TBC? > Thanks for the help Adrian! ^.^ <uses a mirror and lenses to shine the full power of Maria's smile on a recalcitrant piece of steel, melting it instantly> > ::tags him with that margarine-net:: hehe! <tags Maria with a toaster, powered by Magnemite chips>