Cynthia adjusted her communicator into a more comfortable position in her ear as the Glaceon went to answer her, but something small running towards them from the misty gloom of the ruins caught their attention. A Houndour? ...No, too small.
Her communicator screeched an uncomfortable buzz into her ear, but just as she tuned it the small canine collided into her legs.
Lucario grabbed her arm to keep her balanced and glared at the creature as he bared his fangs at them. "Don't catch me! I bite!"
he growled, actually managing to look aggressive despite his small stature. Lucario growled straight back, starting to threaten the small pup to back down when his sensors jolted to life. "Cynthia, infected!"
Surely enough, an undead Zigzagoon was dashing its way towards them, drool dangling from its bloodstained jaw as it neared."Lucario, hold steady. Prepare an Aura Sphere"
the former Champion ordered, standing tall and as the threat approached. Her dual-type's hands flickered as ball of blue energy appeared between them, and above them, Braviary squawked again. "Braviary, stay where you are."
But a battle was not to be, for the small pup quickly disposed of the small raccoon with a well-aimed Fire Fang, crushing the top of its skull. Cynthia relaxed, and so did her Pokemon. "Well, it seems we have no need to worry as long as we have this little warrior around to protect us,"
she said, offering a warm smile to the pup. Perhaps all he needed was a reason to trust her.
The Glaceon, however, was not impressed. "You've killed the Undead, Pup,"
he snarled, his fur bristling, "Now leave."
He looked up at her, his eyes brimming with passion. "This is what I spoke of, Ma'am. An Evil. They plague the Earth and are the cause of this horrible Apocalypse-- we have to destroy any that cross our path!"
Cynthia would've laughed, discerning the Glaceon's words as a joke, if he didn't look so...so desperate, so resolute. She stared at him in bewilderment as he went on. "They've dogged the Righteous' steps since the Dawn of Time, leeching off all that is good in the world. Love, life, happiness-- they drink it dry and leave only sorrow, pain and death! Darks, Psychics, Dragons, Poisons, Ghosts-- they're all corrupted, all a part of what rots this world to the core! They caused this, and we won't see the end of this pandemic until all of the Blighted are wiped from the face of the Earth! You have to believe me!"
Before she could even imagine what she was going to say, there was a flurry of wind and thud as Braviary landed behind her. The large bird scoffed as he held himself up high, glaring down his beak at the Eeveelution."What the hell is this guy blabbering on about?"
he snapped. "'Cause of the Epidemic'? What does he know about that?! Even we have no clue where this shit started.""Braviary--""Darks, Dragons, Ghosts -- what?! I think this loser has a few screws loose--""Braviary."
Cynthia's firm voice stopped the bird in his tracks. "That is enough. Don't be so rude."
The avian grunted and ruffled his feathers indignantly, but said no more."I...I'm sorry about that,"
said Cynthia, trying to appear earnest as she looked back at the Glaceon. "I...can't say that I understand all of what you are trying to say, but..."
She trailed off, utterly baffled at this Pokemon's belief system, if indeed it was true. If it wasn't, this Glaceon was a heck of a good joker.
The Pikachu who had appeared performed a small dance to introduce herself but, as adorable as it was, only added to the awkwardness of the situation. The woman was simply at a complete loss of what to say or do. She couldn't tell the pup to leave simply because the Ice-type didn't approve of his typing, and likewise she couldn't shun the Glaceon for the beliefs he clearly held so closely to his heart.
Braviary grunted out a curse behind her as a Noivern landed nearby, and Cynthia was almost ready to join him. While she had no problem with company, a lot
of Pokemon had turned up in just a couple of minutes, one of them proving to be especially difficult. Cynthia's gaze turned to the gloomy depths of the ruins, thinking about their objective."Who's the idiot preaching word vomit and ear torture?"
asked a Pokemon that Cynthia had never seen before shortly after she had hopped off the larger dragon's back. Braviary snorted from behind her."All right,"
Cynthia said, loud enough to get everyone's attention. "I think...we should all just start again. It's been a...rather turbulent start, wouldn't you say?"
She turned the knob on her communicator until the white noise in the background stopped. She sighed; she had suspected that the signal would be poor here. "It's wonderful to meet all of you. My name is Cynthia,"
she said, offering them a friendly nod. "I'm a Trainer.""Champion,"
Braviary firmly corrected her with a smug ruffle of his feathers."Former Champion."
Cynthia hoped that she was concealing her sudden burst of nerves as she maintained her smile. She hadn't planned on revealing her past occupation, and only hoped that none of these Pokemon would prejudice or fear her on those grounds. "But that's irrelevant; I hope I can be friends with all of you."