Symphony No. 8 in G Minor Op. 11
"Gears of Fate"
The idea of Pokégirls and all associated characters, concepts, situations, et cetera were created by and are property of the Pokégirl Community at large and can be considered copyright to the assorted members of said community and the community as a whole. Other recognizable characters, concepts, et cetera are also not my own work, and are property of their creators. All characters resembling real people or their intellectual property to a significant extent are used with their permission. This is strictly a work of Fiction and is not intended to violate the aforementioned copyrights, nor to earn any capital for the author. All original characters, concepts, situations, text, and portrayals are copyright to the author (CyberForte), but they may be used by any other wishing to do so with the consent of the original author, who may be contacted at CyberForte@aol.com. Also, it is advisable for any person or persons reading this work who find(s) sexuality and its explicit depiction in writing objectionable to cease reading this immediately. The author assumes no responsibility for the reaction(s) of the reader to this work.
It was twilight, but that wasn't really saying much. It has been twilight for three months, and it probably would be such for another three yet. Such was life in Antarctica, but it was a life that could be gotten used to, he decided, looking down from the side of the cliff. It was a strange scene that greeted his gaze, but one that he smiled slightly at; the construction was coming along nicely, it seemed. Much of the excavation was done, and the beginnings if a wall could be seen around the perimeter of the pit.
Within the actual construction site, several groups of dots were moving, and if he hadn't known that they were his compatriots and their Pokégirls (primarily ice-types, since the fire and ground types had already done their part), he might have wondered how insects were alive out on the ice. It was such a long way down.... And it all looked so clean and easy from up here.
That was certainly an illusion, though; he'd spent a little time as a project manager during the early phases of the excavation, and it had been a royal mess. Thankfully, it hadn't been a job that he'd been forced to pursue, though; the work in the management sector was still voluntary. Only the grunt work actually had assignment listings at this point, as there was no shortage of those who wanted to run things or those with design ideas.
In any case, the thoughts of the man on the cliff soon changed focus, shifting from the creation being done below to less present issues. It had been almost forty years since the war, he reflected, and yet... he still looked like a kid. A mature kid, maybe, but, for someone over forty-two, he looked too damn young. Not that he minded the ramifications of the fact; no, it was more that people were starting to notice. But, he managed to move around enough that it wasn't too pressing an issue, he supposed; certainly not as bad as those who wouldn't take him seriously because of how young he looked.
Well, unless Mara was with him, he amended wryly. Having a vampire at one's side gave one much more clout than they would normally get, especially an utterly loyal one. He considered them idiots for being so easily cowed, really, but it wasn't like he couldn't use the help, so he wasn't complaining. And it might have been wiser than most realized to fear Mara...but none of them needed to know why. That knowledge was his and hers alone, and would probably stay that way for both of their safety.
At least ferals weren't a problem, though, for the same reason. It made going for walks like this so much safer, and that was something he appreciated. Being inside all day wasn't something he hated particularly, of course, but being inside all day with other people? Intolerable. Even being around the scientists too long was irritating.... Mara, of course, he could stand, or she wouldn't be here with him. Maybe it was because she wasn't that big on talking when they were together. It made their relationship easier to only talk when there was something to say.
"Ironic, really.... I've heard others state that communication is the deciding factor in whether a relationship works. I wonder if I would be considered twisted if I said that they were right."
"Probably. Still a philosophical bastard, eh?" The second voice's harshness contrasted rather well with the contemplative tenor of the first, offering a brief juxtaposition of the two personalities. Or at least their affects.
"And I see that you're still as eloquent as ever, Raphael. But, still, it was good of you to come."
"Eh, eloquence is a waste of time when you can say it better bluntly. For example, it's not like I had much choice; if you hadn't insisted, no way I'd be in this frozen hellhole. And don't call me that."
"Eloquent and diplomatic both. You never cease to amaze, Blues. In any case, I felt it was important that we talk about the future, I suppose. I am well aware that we aren't the closest, but I do retain some sense of... responsibility for you, shall we say."
"I'm touched, but I'd rather you spare me the 'brotherly affection.'"
"I expected as much. I suppose that we're too different to have much of a relationship to each other at this point. But still, I would appreciate if you could at least reveal your intentions for the near future. If nothing further, it would be good to be aware of how to contact you."
"Hm. Kay, I guess I can tell you that much.... I do still owe you something. So... I'm gonna open a conservatory. I'm tired of everyone caring more for their damned sluts than the world. What 'bout you?"
"...I intend to stay here. Things are going well, and we ought to have erected our first city before the year is out."
"Heh, I guess it's your life to waste, then."
"If you want to phrase it as such, indeed. Have you given any consideration to the suggestion that I offered to you in our correspondence?"
"...yeah, I thought about it. Still don't want one. Having to screw them all the time just so they stay sane isn't worth the effort."
"I suppose that such a choice is your loss, in that case. Though I cannot help but question the validity of such reasoning when considering your primary alternative."
"Just drop it, 'kay? I'm not tryin' to force you to stop, am I?"
"Very well; touché, I suppose. Would you be willing to at least accept an escort for your return to Echo Base? It can be somewhat treacherous for a human to traverse the ice without protection."
"Nah, I'll be fine. Made it out here, didn't I?"
"Point. However, I would not assume such Luck as a given; it rarely pays to bank upon her aid."
"...butt out, Egurashie; I'm not a helpless kid anymore. I can handle myself."
Thus, with a sigh from the former, the brown-wrapped form of the latter turned, a mirrored visor that wasn't quite hidden under his hood catching enough of the limited lighting to flash momentarily. Once the maneuver was complete, he began to make his decent down the icy path.
Sighing again, the man who hadn't left finally turned too, some of the embroidered blue flames on his own black cloak catching the pathetic light long enough to give off a few glimmers as well. He'd not bothered facing the other as they spoke and now, looking down 'pon the slowly shrinking patch of brown, he shook his head, "...idiot. He will be attacked before he can make even half of the trek back."
Unlike the other, his face and head wasn't protected by a hood; being much more aclimated to the icy conditions, he didn't usually wear one, allowing his auburn-hair to blow about slightly and collect a light dusting of snow. He was also easily the taller of the two, and his face overall was a somewhat strange combination; the appearance of relative youth (he looked to be in his early twenties), but with a set that suggested maybe that wasn't all there was to the story...though not everyone caught on to that, unfortunately for all parties involved.
In any case, he seemed to be contemplating again at this point (likely on what to do), and made no further action until a soft voice made itself known near his right ear, "Do you intend to accompany him regardless, Commander?"
"I suppose that we ought to, yes. It would be unfortunate for him to perish whilst here at my behest."
No reply was forthcoming from the new voice, but the air to the man's right rippled slightly, revealing the form that had, henceforth, hidden herself within. She, too, wore a black cloak, although less exotic in its design than her companion's, and with a hood that was in place, causing little of the meager light to fall on her face. However, it was enough to show that it contrasted sharply with the color of her attire.
Still not speaking, this newly materialized entity cast her gaze towards Egurashie, then gave a slight nod, apparently waiting for him to move, which he did after a moment more's contemplation. Longs strides from the human were matched by shorter, but more frequent ones from his companion, and the two quietly made their way into the snow and ice, both trying to both watch the treacherous terrain and the diminishing brown outline below them. It wasn't easy, but they had plenty of experience....
Trekking through the white landscape after leaving the company of the man on the hill, Raphael (as he preferred not to be called) sighed slightly. He really should have accepted the offer of protection, he knew, but he'd be damned if he had to ask Egurashie for help, especially when that help would be even more proof of something he was still trying to deny. He did not want Pokégirls, damnit... but it was getting hard to make that logical, especially since he wanted to start a floral conservatory. He might have been quite apt at gardening, but the abilities available via Pokégirls were damned tantalizing....
So lost in such considerations was he, his body left to run mechanically on a the rhythm he'd established, that he didn't hear or see the threat until the sound of charging hoof beats on ice was close enough to be considered almost thundering. Cursing at that point, the bundled man did his best to drop to the side, narrowly avoiding the Ice Blade that cut through the space his head had been occupying a moment before.
The Fronzenare, though, unphased by his avoidance, continued to charge, only turning once she'd gone far enough past to think herself safe from any retaliatory action during the moment of weakness that the turn would create. This gave Raphael a moment to recover himself slightly, but he still had no clue what the hell he was going to do--how the hell was he supposed to get out of this alive...?
To make matters worse, when the feral began her charge, she also began a charge of another kind; in her hands, a beam of ice started to form... "Oh shi--"
"You shouldn't have attempted that, Blues. It was a foolish display of pride." The voice was chiding and mildly reproachful, a fact that wasn't lost on its recipient, whose own tone reflected annoyance.
"Yeah, yeah, I know. Though you really don't have much room to talk about pride, y'know."
No response to this was forthcoming; seeming to ignore the return barb, the man called Egurashie surveyed the scene before him. The tauric feral had gone down without too much of a fight, and now her blood stained the snow in the area a dark crimson. Her actual body, however, rested on its side, face twisted into an expression of exquisite agony... and laying several feet away from the body. Kneeling over the body then, was her killer. No blood marred her black cloak (or, if it did, the fabric hid it), but had she looked up, Egurashie knew that her face would be stained with it. She was a vampire, after all, and drinking from a kill was only practical.
They had arrived, thankfully, just as the Frozenare was charging her ice beam, and the Vampire had been able to counter it with a quickly blast of Night Shade, after which she'd closed in with a saber, phased through the ice-type's guard, and nicked her in the chest, aiming the blow so as to cause her to stumble. From there, it'd been an easy matter to remove the fallen feral's head. And, whilst she'd been doing this, Egurashie had moved in to evacuate Blues, just in case things went badly.
"...why'd you bother, anyway?"
Blinking slightly as the other spoke again, Egurashie gave an almost imperceivable shrug, "I would prefer not to have your death on my hands."
"Ha! You, conscientious?"
"...regardless of what you may think of me, I do have a conscience, yes. However... I suppose that it's also something of an insurance measure against boredom. It is...good, I think, to have someone as ageless as I around."
"Heh... I guess I can see it.... Selfishness becomes you a lot more. But... do you really think we're the only ones left?"
"...I'm uncertain, to be honest. There was ample time after our escape for others to make good on their own, and who can say if those loyal to him might have been elsewhere when things went south? However... if others do exist, it will soon be hard to identify them, you realize? I'm almost relieved; it grows tiresome to be thought of as a child and to be unable to refute it."
"I'll agree with you there--I've got it worse than you, after all."
"Indeed, although I somehow doubt that you experience enough meaningful interaction to care.
And, indeed, silence ensued, although both knew it was not a result of the "command;" they were just out of things to say. So they waited for Egurashie's protector to finish her meal in silence, after which she almost carelessly wiped her face on a handful of snow (although the action did get all of the blood of) and moved to her Commander's right. Still silent, the trio resumed its trek through the frozen wastes, their path leading back toward one of the only real permanent settlements on the continent.
~Les remarques de l'auteur~
Not much to say here, really; I've been wanting to do this rewrite for a while, and now I finally have. It's short as heck, but better than my old one by a mile, which is good; it was probably giving people a very bad impression of my writing. Anyway, to those of you reading this for the first time, I hope you enjoyed and such, and reviews (positive or no) are highly desired. CF is a review addict, I fear. >.>; <.<;
~Relevant Pokedex Entries:
VAMPIRE, the Bloodsucking Pokégirl
Type: Very Near Human
Strong Vs: Bug, Fighting, Ground, Ghost, Magic, Plant, Poison, Psychic, Infernal
Weak Vs: Dark, Electric, Ice, Celestial, solar-based attacks
Attacks: Vampire Bite, Drain, Invis, Night Shade, Phase, Illusion, Fear Aura, Mega Drain, Dark Shield, Cocoon of Darkness, Dark Mist, Dark Matter, Blood Blade, Blood Bullets, Vampiric Touch, Ghost Blade, Nightmare Syndrome
Enhancements: Enhanced Speed (x4), Enhanced Strength (x4), Enhanced Endurance (x4), Enhanced Durability (x4), Enhanced Healing (x3), Darkness affinity, Constant Ashen Wings and Dark Goggles effect, light transformation and illusionary capabilities, Longevity.
Evolves: Psivamp (Moon Shard), Lucarda (Zalera’s Blessing), Starlady (Dawn Stone)
Evolves From: Humans, Dark-type Pokégirls or Amazon-type Pokégirls (infected through bite)
Bounty (for confirmed kill): 200,000 SLC (applies to Ferals only)
Bounty (for reporting sighting & getting out alive): 57,000 SLC (applies to Ferals only)
Bounty (for successful capture & taming): 57,500 SLC (applies to Ferals only)
Recommendation if you see one: Before anything is done, be certain that the Vampire is indeed a Feral one. Observe it, trying if at all possible to stay out of its way. The difference between a Feral Vampire and a Tamed Vampire is very subtle. If the Vampire seems even remotely animalistic in nature, then evac immediately, making sure to have a fighting-type Pokégirl at the ready if you are spotted. If you are spotted, be prepared to kill the Vampire as its bite is potentially lethal and has the potential to infect you or your Pokégirls, resulting in a transformation into a Vampire. (applies to Ferals only)
Vampires were one of the few species of non-Infernals that campaigned with the Legions of Terror during the war. Their presence alone was enough to inspire fear in the populace, and since Sukebe’s research had yielded that humans could be converted to Vampires and forced into service with the Legion, they were considered to be even more terrifying. Human in appearance, save for their pale skin and more pointed than normal canine teeth, they were easily capable of blending in with humanity.
While sunlight didn’t kill them, as it normally would with vampires in the old stories, they were weakened severely by the sun and generally stayed inactive until nighttime. This made it easier to catch and tame Vampires, however doing so guarantees that the Vampire will never have any respect for you. Catching a Feral Vampire at night, and especially at a full moon, when their powers are at their strongest, and you guarantee a loyal, cooperative Vampire in your harem.
Vampires have a variety of fearsome abilities. They can transform into pre-Sukebe creatures such as rats or bats, more powerful Vampires being able to change into swarms of these creatures. They can also transform into mist for silent movement through an area, remaining aware of their entire surroundings when transformed and capable of reforming at any time. They can pass through walls and turn invisible, and manipulate dark energy to their own ends. They are fierce, savage fighters when Feral, losing all of their complex abilities except for much lessened invisibility powers and natural flight. When Tame, their tactics change, as they tend to favor a combination of intimidation and evasive tactics, using illusions and trickery to basically terrify the opponent into defeating themselves. They can turn up to one other person invisible as well, as well as phase them through a wall, but only if they are completely tangible and/or visible before grabbing someone and using the ability.
Having a Vampire in your Harem is not recommended, but doing so shows that you have the patience, diligence, and willingness to do what is necessary for your girls to be happy. Vampires need only one thing to survive: blood. If a Tamer is willing to let their Vampire feed from them, just enough for the Vampire’s needs to suffice, then they guarantee loyalty from their Vampire. It’s best to let them stay in their Pokéball until nighttime, as they become severely weak during the day and cannot take pleasure from any sort of physical act, making Taming useless. In official Pokégirl battles, it is forbidden to use Solar attacks on them, as it is potentially fatal to them.
Vampires can secret a chemical substance through the hollow canines they use to feed. This chemical is what triggers the change into a Vampire. Males turn female before their transformation. To tell the difference from a normal feeding bite and an infected bite, looking for a greenish-yellow foam around the wound. A vampiric infection can be treated and cured within seven days of the bite via white magic and careful medical treatment, but by the eighth day, the effects are irreversible. Due to the nature of how Vampires are formed, no cases of Threshold have been recorded, or are believed to be even possible.
Note that Ferals are FAR more dangerous to travellers than Tame Vampires. Tame Vampires have a strong sense of dignity and are far more likely to be polite to people they meet. They will also NEVER drink more than they need to survive. Ferals are savage, and will drink even when they aren’t thirsty. They also have less control over their bodies and are far more likely to accidentally infect someone with a vampiric transformation virus. Feral Vampires also command Feral Vampira, a breed that Tame Vampires look down on with derision and amusement, as they are moderately useful to their purposes.
FROZENARE, the Icy Mare Pokégirl
Type: Near Human, Metamorph (horse)
Frequency: Rare (Edo League, former Mongolia area), Very Rare (other Arctic Regions)
Role: Arctic Scouts, Pokégirl Transports, frequent partners of Huns
Strong Vs: Dragon, Flying, Ground, Plant, Ice
Weak Vs: Fighting, Fire, Rock, Steel
Attacks: Stomp, Takedown, Ice Floor, Ice Beam, Ice Wall, Heavenly Strike, Quick Attack, Trample, Blizzard, Mist, Ice Punch, Ice Sword, Cold Snap, Heat Drain
Enhancements: Shapeshifting, Enhanced Strength (x5), Enhanced Endurance (x10), Enhanced Durability (x4), Enhanced Senses (x3), resistance to cold, ability to maintain speed in snow and icy conditions
Evolves From: Ponytaur (Ice Crystal)
Frozenares (last syllable pronounced like 'mare') are a powerful breed of horse Pokégirl. They have icy blue skin, glowing white eyes, muscular bodies in both their human and tauric form, long, flowing white hair, C-cup breasts, and snow-white hooves. They are also physically incapable of smiling, making them opposite in that respect to NightMares, who are physically incapable of NOT smiling.
They are easier to get than Unicorns and Rapitaurs, however they aren't that popular compared to the other two. They are not as fast, being more bulky and muscular, making up for their speed loss in sheer attacking power. Their bodies radiate cold, like most ice types, and they aren't as concerned with being the fasted thing alive, feeling it to be nothing more than an amusing diversion when there isn't anything else important to do. Their inability to smile combined with their statuesque builds are intimidating to some trainers, although horse-type Pokégirl trainers like to have them, balancing out the Rapitaur's fire with the Frozenare's ice.
One major thing people have against them is the role they played during the Revenge War. Frozenares were frequently seen as the steeds of Huns, and the leaders of several prominent tribes of Huns rode Frozenares into battle, their ice abilities doing massive damage. Shortly after the Revenge War came to a halt, Frozenares and Huns drifted apart, although many stayed with them. Frozenare herds attacked the homes of people trying to live in that area, stealing food and moving on, earning them a bad reputation that for the most part has faded. Still, many remember that Frozenares were a deadly force in the Revenge War, and those of the former Chinese Empire have forbidden Tamers from having Frozenares and Huns.
Frozenares, in battle, charge in like tanks, firing ice beams and wielding ice swords, trampling anything that gets in their way. Feral Frozenares are more likely to do this, as they tend to be more savage than most ice types. They are difficult to Tame from a Feral state due to their nature and a strong fire-type is recommended to be a part of the attempt at Taming one, as they will automatically revert to their two-legged form if they are too hot.
No Threshold cases have been confirmed.