Pokegirls and Pokewomen come from the Pokewomon Forum at http://disc.server.com/Indices/169881.html.

"Wild Horses and Pokegirls" is the creation of Metroanime.


        Taylor was aware of the cat lick-style tonguing Sylve was giving him. Then, he remembered, Sylve is dead and buried in a grave I dug myself. Whoever was doing it was being extremely dainty, even peeling his torn pants open without waking him, and was very skilled. So, he cracked an eye to get a look at whoever it was. Don't scare them, he thought, Unless there's a reason to. He couldn't remember any Ferals who'd be that light-handed in sucking off a Tamer in the wild. The huge, white wings limited the choices. The brown hair and near-total lack of clothing narrowed it further. A Seraph, but one wouldn't creep into a tent and service a Tamer! he thought in confusion, GA - wd! Where did she learn to do that?! He felt as if he'd explode any moment. He couldn't stifle a groan. The Seraph froze. When Taylor didn't react further, she continued, then stopped suddenly.


        What now? he thought as he kept his eyes shut. He could feel the Seraph's breath on his face as she stared at him, close enough to feel his breath as well, trying to determine if he was shamming or not. Should I `accidently` roll over and catch her, or wait? he wondered, when she rolled him on his back, slid herself onto him and began sliding up and down, he decided to just enjoy it.


        It was all he could do to not react. She immediately began speeding up, puffing and moaning. "Please, Muffin good girl, let Muffin feel it, please, please, please."


        That explains it, he realized, She's going Feral. From what Sylve said, any Tamed or Domestic Pokègirl fears that like a human fears cancer. So she'll do whatever she can to avoid it. He shifted to give her more friction, and a better chance of getting what she needed. She continued to pump up and down, whimpering in frustration. He concentrated on the idea he was cheating on Sylve, to keep from blasting off.


        The Seraph's noises went from moans to whines of frustration. It spurred her to slide up and down faster, causing her hair to whip around and her breast to bounce despite their bindings. In spite of her piteous expression, her sweat, bounce and desperation was driving him crazy. I can't hold back much longer, he thought, Go first, go first, go first.


        "NOOOOO!" she wailed as he spurted inside her. The moment he was done, she got on her knees between his legs, engulfing him in her mouth and sliding up and down. She whined pathetically as she sucked him off.


        "Maybe I can help," he offered. I hope the stories about Seraphs are true, he thought as he looked at her shocked expression as she froze. "My Pokègirl liked some experimentation, maybe what we learned could help. I know you're going Feral. I'd like to help, if I can."


        "NOOO!" she wailed, as she leapt from the tent and into the air, ignoring that he'd wrapped his legs around her waist and was carried into the air with her. "No, no, no! Muffin needs!"


        Okay, your name is 'Muffin', he thought as he swung beneath her, I'm glad I was able to get an arm in the straps. He slipped his pack into a more secure position and reached up to grab her legs, adjusted his hold. Ride's not as wild as Sylve's, he though of his departed Ponytaur, Boy was I surprised when she told me she wanted to be Tamed at a full gallop. I'd thought only Pidgettes wanted stuff like that. He carefully extracted from the pack, one of Sylve's favorite `toys`. I wasn't going to hang that off the end of galloping horse-type, but there's nothing wrong with lying on her back and making her knees go wobbly.


        "Don't do!" Muffin shouted as he slowly inserted it, "Muffin a good girl!"


        He felt almost no resistance as he began slowly sliding the dildo in and out of Muffin.


        "No do!" she wailed as she flew on, "Make Muffin no fly good!"


        "Then climb or land," he replied, "I know you won't hurt me." He alternated series of fast and slow strokes, rotating it slightly as they flew.


        "Please! Don't tease Muffin," she whined as she climbed higher, "Don't do! Please." She was fluttering quite a bit.


        He looked around. At least two thousand feet, he thought, Okay. "I thought you needed it," he said as he pulled it out and put it away, Muffin's flying skill improved immediately. "Sorry, to have bothered you." He let go with his arms and legs, dropping away.


        "NO!" Muffin screamed, sounding odd as he dropped away.


        A moment later he found his face in Muffin's considerable cleavage, her arms tightly wrapped around him. As he wrapped his arms around her, he could feel her weeping and sobbing as they descended and settled onto the ground. They lay there in each other's arms, then the Seraph's wings and legs wrapped around him, holding his as tightly as her arms.


        I wonder if Sylve would approve, he thought, She always thought I should become a Tamer, but I always thought it would be cheating on her. She kept telling me I was being silly thinking like that. I guess she was right, I just wish I could ask her permission. He held her with his legs and began massaging her breasts.


        "No, don't tease Muffin," she moaned.


        "I'm not teasing. You're going Feral, aren't you. Let me help."


        "Please, don't tease," she pled as her hands roamed his back, "Need so much."


        He slipped her nipples out of their bindings and began suckling one. He was shocked by the spurt of chalky sweetness, then began drinking deeply as Muffin moaned deeply.


        "Yes, drink Muffin," she begged, her hands on his bottom, mirroring the massage he was giving her breasts. "So full, hurts, empty Muffin."


        Were your kits killed? he wondered, as he released one teat.


        "Please, still full," Muffin begged, then sighed as he began on the other.


        He enjoyed the warm food, and Muffin's hands and body reacting to her pleasure. Poor kid, Taylor thought as he began running his free hand over her stomach, causing her to squirm and giggle. "Oh, ticklish," he teased, and began exploring further, "Surrender!"


        "Not fair!" she protested mightily, but instead of counterattacking, she grappled him tighter, trapping his hands right over her most sensitive spots. He continued to tickle her relentlessly, enjoying the writhing girl wrapped around him, her breasts heaving as she tried to breathe.


        "Muffin - surr - enders," she gasped, loosening her grip slightly, letting him remove his hands from her most vulnerable spots.


        He immediately resumed suckling her, and put his hands to better use. His fingers caressed the swollen lips of her labia, felt as well as heard her groan as he traced the outline, trying to tease her clitoris to come out and play. She's tall, he thought idly, I may not exactly be towering, but I can barely reach her crotch while I'm at her breasts.


        "Not fair," she breathed, still panting from the tickling.


        "You're stronger than me," he told her, "I have to cheat. You need help. I know what going Feral means."


        "Muffin says stop," she said tiredly. She easily lifted him off her, setting him beside her. "Muffin says stop." She flopped back and covered her face with her hands, hiding her tears.


        "I'm sorry," he told her, "I am trying to help." He moved closer to her, she didn't shy away.


        She uncovered her tears and drew him closer. "Then drink Muffin, that Muffin like," she said, "But Muffin broke down there. Bad man make no Taming works for Muffin." She buried her face in his shoulder and began sobbing.


        "Then I can help," he said as he extracted the two Pokèballs from his pack and released the two NurseJoys he was transporting to their new home. "This Seraph says she's 'broke down there'," he told the two new Pokègirls. While almost identical twins, their hairstyles made telling them apart easy. Penny, 'short for Penicillin' will want to deal with the problem, and Val, 'short for Valium' will help keep her calm, he thought, The doc who named them was accurate, he just needs a sense of humor transplant. I also can't figure out why Miss Solace has a military brush cut, and Miss 'All-Business' has loose hair almost to her knees.


        Val looked at him and winked. "Please help restrain the patient," she said, "While it will not be painful, being examined this way will not be comfortable for a Seraph."


        Penny had already extracted their equipment from his pack. She scrubbed her arms up to the elbow, then helped Val do the same. Taylor helped Muffin to lie down. I think I know what they're going to do, he thought, And I can guarantee Muffin isn't going to like what they're going to do. Taylor lay across the Seraph's chest and began suckling again, sending Muffin into quiet moans. "They aren't going to hurt you," he told Muffin, "It will be uncomfortable, they are trying to help you. Do you believe me?" She nodded and pulled his head back to her nipple, running her fingers through his hair.


        She gasped and tightened her grip as the two NurseJoys began their examination. Speculum, he thought. "It's okay, they won't hurt you," he told her. She nodded, trying her best not to squirm.


        She gasped again, much louder and whimpered, "Don't stick that in there! Muffin is a good girl!"


        "It's just a medical exam," he reminded her, "They know what they're do - "


        A shriek this time and an extremely tight hug with her entire body. Can't breathe, he thought, Yeah she's soft in all the right places, but there's muscles like steel underneath. She rolled around, with him still in her grip, trying to get away from the two NurseJoys. Then she finally noticed he was turning blue.


        He gasped as she released him.


        "Please don't make Muffin do!" she pleaded with him, "Not them stick things in there!"


        "Muffin, it's all right," he told her, "It's just a medical exam - what?"


        "What you say?" she asked, her eyes tearing up.


        "I said, 'Muffin, it's all right, it's just a medical exam.' Your name, it's Muffin?" he asked.


        "My name it's Muffin," she said in a small voice, "My name it's Muffin." Before he could ask, she grabbed him in a fierce hug and leapt into the air. "MY NAMES IT'S MUFFIN!!" she announced to the world while swooping around the tree tops, dive bombing the NurseJoys, shouting over and over, "MY NAME IT'S MUFFIN!!"


        Taylor just snuggled in, held tight and enjoyed her enthusiasm. I'm glad she's happy, he thought, But she's been calling herself 'Muffin' since I met her. What's going on?


        Finally she got tired of swooping around and aerobatics. She landed, setting Taylor down gently, not releasing him when she realized he was a bit wobbly.


        This is the first time we've been standing next to her, and I'm looking straight into her tits, he thought, I'm not that short, I guess she is that tall. He looked up at her as she beamed down at him.


        "You not let them stick things in Muffin," she smiled more when she said her name, "Muffin promise to be good Pokègirl for you."


        "Weren't you calling yourself 'Muffin' before?" he asked.


        Muffin hung her head. "Was . . . was calling myself 'no-thing'. Nuthin' - Muffin, you think I call myself . . . Muffin?" she asked, coyly looking through her bangs at him.


        "Yes." He got that much out before she engulfed him in another joyous hug. I could get used to this, he thought as she wrapped her arms and wings around him and held him against her body as she laughed, much of her rubbing against him and moving. When she set him down this time, the two NurseJoys felt that approaching was safe.


        "We didn't find anything organically wrong," Penny said, "We should take her to the Pokècenter for a Healing Cycle, that should clear up any problems. The doctor should also be able to run some scans."


        He felt Muffin tense up.


        "Non-invasive," Val said, "You'll be able to wear a gown and lie on a table."


        Muffin looked at Taylor. "Can he . . . can Master stay with me?"


        "He can wait beside the table," Val said, "You'll have to be on the table alone, or it will disturb the readings."


        Muffin didn't look happy, but she nodded.


        "Muffin, you promised to be a good Pokègirl," Taylor said, "There are others like you out there, aren't there?"


        Muffin snorted, smiled, snerked, then broke out laughing hysterically, throwing her arms around his neck and falling to her knees. He felt her shaking with the force of her laughter. Taylor glanced at Val and Penny, both were just as mystified.


        Finally, Muffin mastered herself enough to stand up and look at him. "Master funny," she said, then her smiled faded, "Yes, others who need." She smiled again, then frowned. "Yes, like Muffin. We bring your camp?" she asked hopefully.


        "Sure, let me ball - ah, Pokèball - Val and Penny, then we'll pack up and go to your friends," he told her.





        They talked as they packed the tent and the heavier gear, including Sylve's saddlebags. "Are you sure you can carry all this and me too?" Taylor asked Muffin.


        "Yes, Muffin very strong. Built special strong." She sighed again and looked depressed. "Not strong enough sometimes . . . Muffin sorry for trouble."


        "It's all right," he told her, "My Pokègirl told me how going Feral feels. I think I'd do anything to avoid that. Ready to go?"


        Muffin smiled and nodded. "Where is Master's Pokègirl, Sylve?"


        Taylor gestured at the fresh grave some distance away. Muffin gulped and fell silent.


        The flight was silent. Muffin flying smoothly despite the load. Taylor enjoying the softness and the feeling of restrained power as he was cradled beneath her. It's why I always loved riding my Ponytaur, he thought, Especially when she was galloping, the sturdy muscles and the softness. He felt his erection returning, then saw Muffin's smile and realized she felt it too. She held him tighter against her as she flew. She's just going to frustrate both of us if I can't Tame her, he thought as they flew.


        As they circled a cluster of trees unremarkable amid many others, Muffin swung Taylor so he hung from her waist along her legs. She landed easily, and they were surrounded by four other Seraphs who, except for their minuscule `clothes`, were identical to Muffin.


        "He two NurseJoys who - " Muffin was interrupted by easily a dozen, identical, winged Pokèkits, all wearing the same brown shift, all with the same waist length ash-blonde hair, and blue eyes so pale they looked like ice. All five of the Seraphs picked up two of the kits, held them to their breasts and let them suckle. The remaining four waited their turn, there was a rotation, so all were fed equally.


        Taylor kept silent, tried not to move. The kits stared at him, but made no move to approach or retreat. I'm just an odd tree as far as they are concerned, he thought, Considering how protective most Pokègirls are of kids of all kinds, I am not going to do anything that could be regarded as even vaguely threatening.


        Once they'd finished, Muffin gestured for him to follow. "Release NurseJoys," Muffin told him. He did as ordered, the two NurseJoys noted the five identical Seraphs and the pack of identical Pokèkits.


        In a small cave amid a nest of branches and feathers lay the kit's mother. Taylor slipped his Pokèdex out and scanned the kits and the mother. They're all Angels, he thought in confusion, showing the readout to Val, I never heard of any Pokègirl having fourteen in a litter, let alone an Angel. It would explain why she's so worn out.


        Val took the 'dex to assist her diagnosis. Taylor stepped out of the cave to ease everyone's anxiety. My own included, he thought, That means that someone made a Seraph carry at least five kits to term. I can imagine what the authorities will do to those `gentlemen`. He looked at the forest around him, wondering whether the lab was close.


        After a few minutes, Muffin came out and sat next to him. At least I think it's Muffin, he considered the Pokègirl. "Is she going to be all right?"


        "Muffin not understand," she told him, "NurseJoys whisper-whisper, they not like what they find."


        "That's an understatement," Penny said as she exited the cave, "There's nothing a Healing Cycle can't take care of, other than what the people did that to her."


        "Muffin and Muffin's sisters take care of bad men. While it was only Muffin sisters . . . and Muffin's mother . . . but when they brought in Angel, was too much. Was mother and eight like Muffin, mother and three die. Head bad man point wand and say 'Never again shall you find surcease for the fires. The fires shall consume your reason, but not all, and no slaking by man or beast shall quench it.'" The change in Muffin's tone and bearing left both Taylor and Penny shivering. Then she was again the sad, near-Feral Pokègirl. "Is why Muffin . . . visit you, why Muffin so sensitive down there. All the way, leaving off last step. Is not fun, not nice. Worse than hunger."


        "I'm sorry," Taylor hugged her as he said, "I didn't know."


        "Muffin didn't tell you," Muffin admitted, "No blame self, blame Muffin."


        "I'd rather blame the men who did this."


        "All dead," Muffin told them, "Muffin and sisters see to that."


        "They'll want you to lead a force to investigate," Penny said, "The Angel doesn't have a name either. She's well enough to be 'balled and taken to the Pokècenter we were headed to."


        "What about the kits?" Taylor asked, "If they can fly, it can't be far. I know a bit about herding kits, you add three dimensions, we don't have enough `angel-girls` to have an effective drive."


        "Kits no fly," Muffin said, then got a thoughtful look, "Tent, like bag. Four of Muffin's sisters carry. NurseJoys and Angel in Pokèballs. Muffin carry Master."


        "Much as I wish I could see some of this country," Penny said, "The plan is sound." She extended her hand.


        Taylor froze. The only Pokèball I've got is Sylve's, he thought, then reluctantly handed the ball over, Everything is conspiring to make me forget her. Or to cheapen any specific memories of things that were just hers. He considered the collar he still had in his pocket. That stays hers. I'm not giving that away, I can buy another. If it comes to that.


        Penny proceeded into the cave. Taylor felt Muffin's arms around him. "Is the right thing to do," she said, "Don't know why it hurts, but is right thing."


        "I know," he said, but it did nothing for his pain and guilt.





        The aerial convoy landed in the open-air foyer of the Pokècenter. The four exhausted Seraphs took positions as the Angel kits seemed to spill out of the tent. Muffin blocked the only exit while Taylor released the two NurseJoys. "Okay, Muffin, hold your post, you two get the door open, one of you hold it while the other blocks the door to the examination rooms. The rest of you lets get them moving," Taylor ordered as he began crowding the kits into the Pokècenter proper. He noted Muffin's smirk as they `herded` the kits inside. The doctor watched in amazement as his new Pokècenter was invaded. Taylor was glad he'd changed into clean clothes. "We have some customers for you," Taylor called to the stunned man. The doctor depended to his medical training to keep control. He looked at the apparently healthy kits, the exhausted Seraphs, and the two NurseJoys.


        "Here," Taylor said as he handed over the Pokèball containing the kits' mother, "She gave birth to all of them. You can check with your two new NurseJoys about the details."


        The Seraphs collapsed into the chairs, having effectively corralled the kits in the room. Val and Penny followed the doctor into the back, then Taylor blocked the door by sitting in front of it. Muffin blocked the door back outside the same way. Fortunately, the kits seemed content to remain in one big cluster in the middle of the room. They stared at everything, not moving anything except their heads and eyes.


        They stare me that way, I'm surprised I don't burst into flames, he thought.


        "Names," Muffin suggested, "Earned them. Better than 'nuthin'."


        "I agree. Do any of you have a preference?" Taylor asked, trying to distract himself from the Angel kits staring at him, "I figured you'd all take the same name since I can barely tell you apart. There were a trio, triplets who used to drive the teacher crazy by insisting one was the other."


        They shook their heads in laughter they were too tired to voice.


        I don't like that they don't care what I call them, Taylor thought, Muffin seemed to love being called anything.


        Taylor pointed to one who'd been the straw boss during the flight. "Bismarck." Got a nod. "Biscuit."


        "Cookie," the Seraph replied with a tired smile.


        "Okay, Cookie," Taylor said, pointing to another, "Baguette." Another nod. "Dumpling."


        "Kolache," the last Seraph said.


        "I'll have to look that one up," Taylor admitted, "Are you all satisfied?" When he was answered with tired smiles and nods, he relaxed. "Okay, all of you are going to get worked on along with the kids. I think they may be able to solve your problem, at least temporarily. They have a machine - Muffin it's not like that - a machine that can deal with your needs. If it works, you'll better be able to help the staff here deal with your problem in a more permanent way."


        "What about you?" Muffin asked with real concern.


        I want to tell the NurseJoys to give them a Level 5, let them all start fresh, he thought, I can't bring myself to suggest that. The only Pokègirl I ever cared about died yesterday, it's too soon. I don't want another Pokègirl, or five, or six, or twenty. I don't want the responsibility, I don't want the demands, I also don't want anyone trying to take her place or `comfort` me out of remembering her. "I want to grieve who I lost," he said quietly, leaving the room and going outside. None of the Seraphs followed him.


        The hand on his shoulder some time later, startled him. "Hello doctor," he said, "I delivered your NurseJoys."


        "And a very interesting brood," the graying man said, "I take it your Ponytaur didn't make it."


        "Delicately put as expected," Taylor said as he stood, "Yes, a Rack out in the forest. She evolved to Rapitaur and killed it. Died of her injuries. She's buried out there."


        "Seems you buried yourself out there too," the doctor said in disapproving tones, "Why didn't you just tell me to put them all through a Level 5?"


        "Because they aren't my responsibility," Taylor replied, "I brought them to the proper authorities. The lab they were created in has to be located and dealt with. I don't want 'something to make me forget', 'something to make me feel better', or any of that Minotaura scat people throw at people who've lost someone."


        "Are you through?" the doctor asked.


        "Yes." You bastard, you didn't hear a word I said, did you? Taylor thought, You're going to throw the whole mess back in my lap and think you're being noble.


        "The Angel will be fine after the Healing Cycle is over. The Seraphs will be tested after they go through a Healing Cycle. Three Level 3 Taming Cycles should deal with their problem, then a Grooming Cycle. After that, we can see if their problem persists."


        "Considering both Angels and Seraphs have healing, I think you can count out any physical cause. Have you contacted a mage, see if it's a curse or something?" No, you're forcing this to become my problem and my solution, he thought, I hated when my mom did this. You aren't my mother, just a meddling old man. "Never mind of course you have, you're the doctor any way," Taylor said as he stood, "Since this is all going to be expensive and I don't want them stinted." He removed the invoice that he was supposed to present for payment. "This should cover most of it. It also has my address if there are additional charges."


        The doctor was appropriately shocked. "You think this is about money?"


        "You haven't mentioned anything so urgent that it has to be done tonight, I was planning on being back in the morning. You didn't tell me about some serious condition that needs my approval or presence. You seem unwilling to give me some peace so I can put this all together in my mind, that leaves your money." I've played this game with other people too long, he thought, I've been pushed around by experts, you're an amateur.


        "I thought you might want to talk about it," the doctor admitted.


        "What part of me walking out of there told you that?" Taylor said, then shut up. I'm going to lose my temper and then I'm going to regret it, he thought, I learned that much from having two older sisters who were bigger than me.


        The doctor nodded, walked away. Taylor got up and started walking, he was too angry to sleep and to wound up inside to really want to do anything else. Like a lot of small to middling towns, aside from the main drag, the place closed up when the sun went down.


        He saw the neat houses, saw the lights inside as the families were eating supper. Like the family Sylve and I were planning to eventually have, he thought. He nodded to a OfficerJenny who was patrolling. All that left him alone, which is what he wanted. I did bury the best part of myself and my future out in the plains, he admitted, And right now, I don't care. When a human dies, we're allowed to mourn, when a Pokègirl dies, we just shovel all our memories and feelings into the ground and get a new one.


        He walked alone with his thoughts for a while, then thought angrily, I read somewhere that before Sukebe, some people had funerals for their pets. He kicked at a stone as he walked, wishing he could kick the whole world. Humans can get all mawkish over something that can't talk, but treat a dead intimate like refuse. I don't understand.





        He arrived at the center as it opened. Sleepy, red-rimmed eyes, slouching walk, stubble which was little more than overgrown peach-fuzz, he knew he looked terrible. I made sure I washed and had something to eat though, he thought as he entered. The Angel and the five Seraphs sat on the benches, the Grooming Cycle and the two NurseJoys had prettied them up some. The Taming and Healing Cycles had removed the slightly vacant desperation from their eyes and postures. The kits were seated on the floor, their shifts weren't so rough and they had bows in their hair.


        Pretty as a picture, Taylor thought, I'm not so far gone that I don't know I'm being set up. Best derail this quickly. "I talked to the local police, and they sent word up the line to the League authorities. They'll be over soon to take statements from all of you, they'll probably want your help raiding the place. Finding anybody left behind."


        "What about you?" one of the Seraphs asked in clear tones.


        I don't even recognize any of them, he realized, `Muffin` is gone, she got her mind back, her self back, and I don't fit in that world anymore. "I'm a farmer and rancher who occasionally takes - took - courier jobs to get some extra cash and to let my folks have some private time together, and so Sylve and I could have some private time together. I've got no interest in a Tamer's journey, or fighting Team Rocket, grand conspiracies, nests of Widows or a wandering Legendary," he said flatly, "I'm going back home, where I belong."


        The Pokègirls weren't comfortable with that answer or his listless delivery. "I believe she meant what you lost, how are you dealing with that?" the Angel asked.


        "Ma'am, I told the doctor it was none of his business," Taylor said, "It is none of yours either. What I lost I can never get back, and I frankly resent everybody insisting I try. If your interest is in charging out to avenge evil, I'm headed in another direction." He felt a mixture of anger and tears welling up inside of him. He refused to release either in public.


        The Angel stood carefully.


        Taylor felt himself bristling as she approached. Now I get the lecture, he thought as he refused to back down.


        She opened her arms. "With your permission?" she asked quietly, standing there at arms length, with her arms out from her sides.


        Taylor swallowed his fear and anger, all he could manage was a nod.


        She knelt before him, wrapping her arms and wings around him. "Please, return to your family, grieve as you need to, and with our blessings," she said softly, compassionately, "Please forgive that in our joy for our salvation, we failed to recognize and appreciate your pain." She looked up at him. "If you were offering a place of peace and rest . . . I wish to raise my children in such a place."


        "I . . . " he tried not to choke up, "I'll have to ask my folks."


        "If you would allow Muffin to fly you home, she can deliver a letter," the Angel offered, laying her head on his chest, "I never met her, but she must have been a beautiful soul to be so missed."


        "She was," he managed, "Excuse me." Taylor felt the Angel release him as he ran away. He felt the tears coming and he could not stop them.





        "Is that it?" Muffin asked.


        Taylor woke slowly, he had fallen asleep during the flight. Emotional and physical exhaustion, as well as the soothing ride in the Seraph's arms had lulled him to sleep within minutes of leveling off.


        Taylor looked around, spotted the farms and town laid out like a map. "That road." He pointed to the macadam strip that led back where he desperately needed to be.


        He noted that Muffin didn't comment, didn't try to snuggle or hug, she simply carried her charge with diligence. I'm grateful for that, he thought, I know Sylve would tell me to just invite them all in . . . if Sylve were here . . . I wouldn't feel the way I do. His family's home soon came into sight. The Lamp Chops and Kung-Ewes had assembled into defensive positions, as well as the rest of the hands and staff. Many of them relaxed as they distinguished him, more when he landed and stepped away from the Seraph.


        "Mom? Dad? I'm back," he called out, and looked around. The pair of them looked out at him from different spots amid the `troops`. He headed for his mom, then stopped. Sylve wouldn't mind, she'd insist, he thought as he turned back to Muffin.


        "It's not safe for a Pokègirl flying alone," he said as he held out the collar, Sylve's collar, "This should keep you from being captured." When he saw her face brightening he quashed it. "That's isn't a gift , it's a loan. I'll want it back."


        Muffin nodded firmly. "Of course, I understand."


        He saw Humbug, the `matriarch` of the Kung-Ewes, heading towards the Seraph as he headed towards his mom and dad. He handed over the letter from the Angel before he began. "Sylve's dead. We were attacked by another Pokègirl. I ran into a few others, it's a long story. Right now I'd just like to go to my room."


        His mom put her arms around his shoulder and led him away.