From: Bandraptor <bandraptor@aol.com> Subject: Re: [PW!] [NC] Battle For the Shattered Dreams Date: Thursday, August 19, 1999 2:50 AM >Landing behind Nori, Theore's wings folded back into his armour. A few >quick adjustments to his chestpiece and gorget, and he tapped the >human on the shoulder. > >"Greetings," said Theore. He bowed. > >Nori screamed in terror at the sight of the insectoid creature before >her, and drew her MDT. > "Careful with that," Theore smiled under his helmet, as he took the gun from her hand. "Do you even know how it works?" "Yeah, I know how it works," Nori snapped back, suddenly forgetting to be frightened. "See, you had the wrong end facing me, which didn't really matter, since the pulse cannon wasn't charged, and..." "Gimmee!" Nori cried, snatching the weapon back, and pointing it at Theore, (still facing the wrong way). "What's the big deal, sneaking up on me like that? That was SO uncool." Theore stepped back a foot, deciding it was best to let the human be. "My sincere apologies. I merely thought it odd, to see an unarmored human venture into uncharted woods, full of savage creatures... and I thought you might like some company." "Bah," Nori sniffed. "That, or you'd like to be carried back to the alien's city." "All right, I catch your drift," Nori sighed. "pull up a chair, or something." Theore chose a spot on the log, in the middle of the clearing. The odd duck that Nori had been riding was seated beside him, albeit at 1/8 it's previous size. "Nemesis," Nori commanded, "What's our status?" "[..]" "Excellent." "You can understand that thing?" Theore boggled. "Er... no..." Nori admitted. "But he's a better conversation partner than you are. So there." The girl rolled her eyes, and returned to whatever she was working on. "Perhaps we got off on the wrong foot," Theore ventured. "My name's Theore." "Mayakashi." the girl named Nori responded. "Maya for short." "Well, Maya, what is it that you're so intent on finishing?" Nori stifled a laugh. "Ever hear of a Chronoshift? We're going to make one." Theore had not, as a matter of fact, ever heard of such a thing. "What does it do?" "It creates a gateway to another world." Nori grinned. "Preferably, my world. I want to go home." Theore couldn't help but think... if his men had access to this "Chronoshift", they'd be able to escape Tie'nek, and return to their planet, as well. "How does it work?" "I have no idea." Nori shrugged this off, and continued with her work. "Hmmph." They sat in silence for a few minutes longer. Suddenly, Theore's attention was drawn to the forest, as he was sure he heard a noise. "Did you hear that?" he asked. "Hear what?" "That noise... some sort of growl, echoing in the woods..." "I didn't hear nothin'," Nori assured him, tensing visibly. A few minutes went by, and there came another noise. This time, it was noticeably louder... a sort of "Gwaar!" that echoed as if it were thunder. "You had to have heard that," Theore frowned, readying a weapon. "I dunno..." Nori looked around, nervously. "What could it be?" "I'm not sure..." Theore replied, tentatively. "You wait here. I'm going to go find out." Nori watched, as the bug-like creature set out into the woods. Another minute went by, then once again, came a "Gwaar!" The girl shuddered, and reached for her gun. Several feet away, Nemesis stoically continued its work on the Chronoshift. "Gwaar!" "Nemesis?" "Gwaar!" "Do you..." "Gwaar!" "...get the feeling..." "GWAar!" "...that that thing..." "GWAAR!" "...is coming this way?" Nori trained her gun on the bushes, as they began to rustle slightly. The growling noise seemed to emanate directly from those bushes. Her heart skipped a beat, as the creature stepped out... "Puppu?" Nori nearly fell over, as a cute little rabbit hopped towards her. "Mokona." her Pokédex chirped, "a disgustingly cute anime sidekick. It's voice is known to make grown men cry, and/or throw bottles at their TV." "Aw, you are cute, aren't you?" Nori cooed, visibly relieved. "Puppu pupu pupu pu?" Mokona giggled. One last growl came from the bushes, before an eight foot long raptorid leapt out, knocking Nori to the ground. Nori struggled against the beast. It was a huge creature, with clawed feet, and an ivory horn on its head. Its skin stretched tightly over its body, revealing the twitching muscles, and its tail swung about wildly, trying to balance the rest of its body. Also, it had a mouth full of razor sharp fangs, many of which were currently imbedded in Nori's left arm. Nori held the arm in front of her face, trying to keep the creatures jaws away from the more delicate parts of her body. Rockets were known to train brutal Pokémon, and this was a good thing in Nori's case, because they were provided with thick leather training gloves. Those gauntlets were all that prevented the monster from biting straight through her arm. But in this case, it hardly mattered. The creature was forcing her arm downward, towards her face, and at such an angle, that Nori feared it would snap. Furthermore, it had been grappling with her arm, slowly working its way through some of the glove's leather. Where the teeth had managed to touch down, she was already bleeding profusely. Panting from the exertion, Nori pushed the creature away, ever so slightly... then reached around with her free arm, and swung the MDT blaster from over her soldier. She tried to target the creature's heart, but the creature brought one of its clawed feet down on her chest...and HARD. The girl let out a cry of agony, and squeezed the trigger. Immediately, Nori found herself blinded, by a blast of green light. Or maybe, the green was the tint from her helmet; which Nori was glad she was wearing, as it certainly saved her face. Her whole body was enveloped in a horrible burning pain, caught in the gun's backfire. It felt like a scalding wind was blowing over her... then it became too strong, and slowly slid her across the ground, before picking her up, and hurling her into a tree. Nori groaned, and attempted to stand, but found she could not. The helmet had been badly cracked, and Nori could no longer see through the view plate. Taking a chance, she removed the breathing apparatus. Things weren't as bad as they could have been. While Nori's uniform was singed, her body had barely been scathed in the blast. Of course, her arm was a different story, and as she tried to move, it became clear that the creature had broken ribs, when it stomped on her. First things first: Using her teeth, Nori ripped a long strip of cloth, from the sleeve of her tattered uniform, and tied it tightly around her arm. Things seemed bad, but she only had to survive for a few more minutes... long enough for the Chronoshift to be opened, then, once she stepped through, her injuries would be healed. With a pained groan, Nori got to her feet, and walked back towards Nemesis. She stopped short, a few feet away from the log. It was still there. The thing was still there. The creature was on the ground, badly burned, and struggling to right itself. On closer examination, Nori could see that one of its feet had been severed. "Damn..." she muttered. Alerted by the voice, the creature whipped its head around, attempting to bite her. Nori jumped back several feet, hugging her limbs to her body. The creature shot her a withering glance, then pulled itself up on its three remaining paws, and took off into the woods. "Nemesis..." Nori sunk down on the log, replacing the helmet, "it's still alive... and now its hidden. It knows where we are... but we... we can't even move from this spot." Nemesis cocked an eye, and returned to its work. Humans concerned themselves, over the most menial things. "Where could Theore be?" Nemesis shook its head, neither knowing, or caring. Its work was nearly finished... why, another few hours, and it would be done; meaning that its slave driver master would allow it to retreat into its pokéball, until it was needed next. 'What a worthless existence,' it despaired, momentarily losing focus on the task at hand. It let out a soft gwak, trying to get its master's attention, but found that she was fast asleep. Well, unconscious, at least. Dusk fell quickly. Nemesis was thankful that its master was still asleep, for if she wasn't, she'd probably be going off about 'the monsters', and how 'the monsters will attack at night'. Stupid human, it thought. It, being clear of mind, had better things to worry about, than simple monsters. A soft hiss came from behind Nemesis, carried by the wind. The Porygon turned slowly, almost surprised by what it saw...the monsters had, in fact returned. They had returned in numbers... six, to be precise. 'Interesting', Nemesis thought, 'these creatures appear to hunt cooperatively'. Moving cautiously, it made its way to the still sleeping Nori, expanded in size, and scooped her onto its back. Drawn by the sudden display of motion, the creatures rushed Nemesis. Calmly, for Porygon knew no fear, Nemesis lifted into the air, stopping a good ten feet above the monsters. They remained in the clearing, snapping their jaws, and swishing their tails rabidly. Without so much as a tear, Nemesis charged a Hyper Beam; and hurled it at one of the creatures, knocking its head clean off its body. 'Weak creatures,' it almost gloated, though it was incapable of gloating. It began to charge a second attack, but one of the creatures leapt... leapt ten feet straight up, and tackled it to the ground. Nori plummeted from its back, tumbling several times, before finally coming to a rest. Two of the creatures, who had been gangbashing Nemesis, abandoned the Porygon, in favor of tastier fare. They circled the girl, carefully waiting for the moment to strike... Nori weakly lifted her blaster, and fired. She missed the monsters... she couldn't have blindsided them, even if she wasn't injured. The plasma blast soared past their heads, into one of the bordering trees. The crown broke off, and crashed to to the ground, bursting into flames upon impact. Panicked, the creatures retreated. Nemesis felt itself becoming weaker. It feebly sent out three more Hyper Beams, hoping to disperse the three creatures, who were still surrounding him. Twice, the Hyper Beams made their marks, knocking the offending creatures backwards. The third one missed. Taking the opportunity, the one remaining creature took Nemesis in its mouth, attempting to crush it. Nemesis had one Hyper Beam left in it, and it prayed as a Porygon would pray, hoping to hit a foot, a hand, anything to make the creature drop it. It concentrated fully on the attack, despite the sounds of teeth scraping against its glassy skin. Slowly, Nemesis found the energy to charge the attack. The creature, seeing that it was having little success chewing on the Porygon, tossed it into the air, hoping to finish it in one last bite. Nemesis flipped in the air, coming to face the monster, it pointed its beak straight down the creature's gaping gullet, took its aim, and... The attack fizzled. Nemesis fell to the ground, powerless. "Nemesis!" Nori cried, rushing towards it, but faltering, "Nemesis, use Reflect! Quickly!" Nemesis blinked, and slowly, very slowly, its body began to flash. The creature lunged towards Nemesis, jaws open, then stopped, as it was hit by a slight tingling sensation. Curious, it snuffled at the glassy duck, only to be shocked again. The creature was emitting short bursts of light at regular intervals; and the light could hurt aggressors, the creature deduced, simply. Nori dragged herself back towards the log, and grabbed for her backpack. It was on the other side of the log, too far for her to reach. Nori swatted at it with good hand, snagging one of the straps, and pulling it halfway over the log. The contents came spilling out onto the ground in front of her. She rummaged around desperately, until her hand came to rest on a small black box. "Two... twenty..." she tried to make out the writing, but her vision was starting to cloud over. She was going to pass out again. "Nemesis!" she croaked, holding the box up, "Catch!" Nori tossed the box over the log, and Nemesis flew to catch it. The creature, alarmed at the thought of its prey escaping, sprung across the clearing, catching up with the Porygon in three quick bounds. The creature spun and skidded, cutting in front of Nemesis, mouth open, ready to bite down... The box bounced dully off the side of its head. The creature halted, clearly surprised, and sneezed, as the box split open, spilling powder all over its face. "DAMNIT!" Nori cried. The creature continued to scan the area absently, when its body began to spark. It leapt back a few feet, shocked. Another burst of electricity flew from its body, cracking against the body of one of its comrades, which had just begun to stir. "The HELL?!?" Nori screamed, "That...thing used my Thunderbolt TM! HOW?!?" The creature's initial surprise quickly turned to sadism, as it sized up its Porygon opponent. It leapt high in the air, crackling with electricity, then sent forth a long blast. The Porygon shivered, unable to move, trapped by the thousands of volts of electricity that were coursing through it. Finally, it could take no more. Nemesis closed its eyes, tensed its body, and exploded into a million pieces. The monster fell to the ground, its body shredded by the shrapnel. Nori pulled herself up, using the log for support. She took her backpack over her shoulder, discarding the gun, and pointed Nemesis' pokéball around, hoping she could still gather its life force. Then she saw it... where Nemesis had been floating when it had exploded, was a blue, swirling mass of light. "The Chronoshift..." she whispered. Taking one last look around the forest, Nori removed Car'tos' helmet, and stepped inside. TBC... -Beth "Ii kanji!" http://members.aol.com/bandraptor