Lu'req was born to a single mother, a trainer's Pokemon who was released for unknown reasons and had no home to return to. She had wandered aimlessly about the Sinnoh region, her pregnancy a surprise with an unknown father, and was forced to settle in the unsightly Great Marsh as her child arrived. Young, ill-prepared, and negligent, the inexperienced Glaceon struggled to rise to the role of mother to her new dependent. The rambunctious Eevee was more than a handful, and for better for worse the bright-eyed child wanted nothing more than to explore and be with other Pokemon rather than at home with his mom. With his mother refusing to play with him and struggling to enforce any rules (let alone teaching him 'no') the Eevee unknowingly took full advantage of his freedom and would constantly wander away.
Lu'req was quick to stumble upon the local kids and integrate himself among them. He was a kind lad, but it was his blazing excitement and passion for all in life that sold him to the other children. With bold ideas, free thought, a wild imagination, and seemingly boundless confidence he was welcome with open arms. Starting adventures they would have never thought of and making himself the center of attention the boy was happy with the friends he made.
The group was nearly all natives of the Great Marsh, but there happened to be one other Eevee, a girl named Johvani. She always seemed so calm, so put together, and as well respected within the group. She was like the opposite of the strong-headed boy, and he really liked how their differences worked together which allowed the two to become fast friends. Johvani even gave him his first [kind] nickname. "You're like a reed," she'd say, "A sturdy little thing even if others treat you like a pushover." He took the name in stride, like a sign of good things to come.
Not everything was a good time and smiles though. Reed's strong feelings often got the better of the young child. Even if he was 'in the right' his lack of understanding for things not going his way would escalated arguments to tussles he would sorely lose. Often covered in dents and dings, the scruffy boy always struggled back to his paws and never backed down. Even as young as he was his conviction made him quite respectable, and eventually the other Pokemon revered him with the same respect they did Johvani. Eating up this attention the two Eevee's would lead the squad on adventures and quickly settled into a dual leadership of sorts.
Times were good, and the Eevee blossomed in his own right. It was the perfect sort of carefree childhood.... until he returned home. Though the child did not understand his mother was suffering from postpartum depression. Spending nearly all her time curled up at home she hardly ate or bathed. On her good days she made an honest but weak attempt to converse when her bubbly child came home with stories and cheer, though it would quickly drain her meager energy. On the bad days when Lu'req was covered in scratches from disagreements it took every ounce of effort to simply tend to his hurts, and it left no energy for anything else aside from saying, "don't cry."
It was a stark change from blissful times with his friends but the child didn't know any different. For him it was normal, and the the poor state of his home should have gone unnoticed at such his fragile age. Unfortunately, his gaze could not remain shrouded, his mother's shrinking body impossible to ignore as he slept against her bony frame. He would give up his share of food, it often being all they had, despite gnawing hunger he had grown accustomed to, but the Glaceon still struggled. The kind Eevee felt a fervent need to do something, and instinct told him to simply find food. Fueled by those very instincts he'd spend hours foraging, stealing, or attempting to hunt for food. The small Pokemon struggled at first, knowing nothing about locating his own meals, but necessity forced him to learn and improve. It was stressful for the child, and the headstrong Pokemon grew even more feisty, often yelling in frustration, but eventually he found success. Knowing where to look, when to fight, and how to coax his mother to eat, the success was sweeter than any full belly.
Yet for all his struggles the Eevee never spoke of his trials to his peers, but the efforts spoke for themselves. The headstrong kid still got into squabbles with his fellows, but he had grown a bit stronger and won the tussles more often or ended them before they could escalate. He found ways to work with the stubborn, and the groups respect for him grew as he showed them more places to explore and had more ideas to introduce to them. The group was happy, the bliss enduring, and those pleasant days seemed to go by in an instant as the children grew older. Reed thought those halcyon times would never end, but the faithful day came suddenly and without warning.
It was quiet, not many kids came to play and Reed decided to search for food early instead. His venture took him quite far, curiosity pushing the Eevee further than normal as he looked for a new, untouched food source. He knew he was heading toward the dangerous part of the Marsh with the toxic pools that few Pokemon dared stay around, but the very idea gave him hope for unclaimed berry trees. Reed assumed no Pokemon would be around and expected the silence, but a very sudden scream sent a chill go down his spine. It was uncomfortably close but the alarms went off as it was unmistakably Johvani's voice calling out in distress. Wasting no time he rushed off in the screams direction, wailing her name though he received no response back, and bursting through some plants he arrived at a horror scene.
Having grown keener senses in his food ventures it only took a few seconds for him to take in the important elements; Johvani was struggling in the toxic waters, and two of his friends were laughing instead of helping her. Confused and screaming Lu'req charged, tackling the Marill and kicking the Skorupi away to get to her. They were quick to attack back, knowing the tattle-telling witness would get them in trouble. Reed fought with all his might, valiantly standing up to the duo, but he was still no match for a two-on-one. Each time he kicked one Pokemon away the other blocked his path. When he got rid of the second the other would be back up, and a heavy strike to the back was enough to knock the Eevee to the ground. Beating the lad with laughs and glee he could only mewl Johvani's name before he realized... her cries had gone silent.
After a couple seconds the others seemed to realize it as well, and their hold on Reed waned. Struggling to his paws the Eevee immediately leaped into the goop, sinking in a blind search for his friend. The other boys stared blankly from the surface, and while they were not likely to help a crack in the brush sent them racing away. Reed was none the wiser within the dark water, and were it not for a blinding light from below he wouldn't have been able to find and grip the shadow that felt like familiar scruff. His lungs screamed as he pulled, paddling toward the surface as the light faded. With his bundle in tow he scrabbled onto the land and into the nearby reeds, and gagged as he screamed Johvani's name.
Scraping the muck from his eyes he was mortified to find it was a wad of plants and leaves he had pulled up. He gasped, about to dive again when a slosh hit his ears and he saw a pair of paws reaching out from the muck. Screaming Johvani's name again as their head burst from the surface with a gasping breath his paws breached the reeds to join her, but he froze in place when he spotted something beyond her. Wading out from behind the ferns was a human, and her eyes were fixed their way. A new sense of panic kept him locked in place, his eyes unable to focus on either the muck-covered Johvani or the human approaching her as his heart raced even faster. Completely unaware of the new danger Johvani kept hacking up toxic sludge water shaking out her pelt. Reed could have sworn his eyes were playing tricks on him with the bizarre purple color and how much taller she seemed to be, but be only saw her for a few moments before she disappeared into a Pokeball. There was no struggle, and the human squealed as she grabbed it and left the way she came without noticing the second Eevee.
That was the last Lu'req saw of his dear friend. From then on.. things never felt the same. There was a hole in his heart and within his group of friends. Without their ever-calm leader fights among the kids grew more frequent and heated. He accused the other boys, demanding them to confess their crimes, but when they shrugged it off as a mere trainer attack he exiled them from the group.
It did little to ease his aching soul though. The rest of the group seemed indifferent to the loss and reasoned that Pokemon were captured all the time, that it was normal, but he couldn't accept that. They didn't so much as shed a tear for her. She was their leader too, shouldn't that count for something, or the ex-friends that caused the event in the first place? The passionate Pokemon felt himself growing angry, frustration worked into his every thought. Reed quickly became a more stern Pokemon, filling their days with play fighting and battle practicing rather than exploring as he sought to vent his frustrations.
Life moved on, and while he eventually did too the young Pokemon never felt the same. The magic of youth had been stripped from him, the allure of a carefree childhood lost by the gaping hole in his heart. His patience shrunk severally, deeply effecting his home life as he would no longer gently coax his mother to care for herself. Demanding things from her changed their dynamic, but the suffering Glaceon shockingly responded better to the firm hand of her young teen. She looked better than she had in years too, finally regaining herself and conquering her postpartum depression in an effort to stand above her son. It was another dramatic change in his life, having his parent actually give a damn, and it was yet another sign of life moving on. As he continued to grow and age into a late teen he finally felt himself recover, and find new things in life to enjoy. He met a whole knew side to his mom, a human's Pokemon with many tricks up her sleeve for him to learn, and the teenager regained his smile.
Then the Epidemic hit.
In the madness that gripped the world their Marsh was not spared. Infected Pokemon went rampant, the dead littering the marshlands, tainting the waters, and tearing apart families. There was nothing Lu'req could do, no amount of meager leadership could save his friend group or neighbors as panic and disease took over. Chaos, destruction, death, the small Pokemon struggled just to keep himself safe. Reed survived as long as he could, hiding, sneaking, using the land he knew to so well to keep himself safe, until it was too much. Exhausting his options, he felt there was no choice but to leave the only home he had ever known.
Accompanied by other survivors the marsh Pokemon traveled south to the town of Pastoria. Humans were feared, loathed, but as they sought shelter they were shocked to find the town abandoned, its human residents fled or dead in the streets. Some few undead roamed the liminal city but were quickly dispatched by the groups many numbers. The lack of humans was disconcerting, the lack of life even more uncomfortable as they took shelter. Despite reservations, it offered the Pokemon a moment to seek supplies and catch their breaths, but before they could even search the place a lone Pokemon approached them.
It was an older Swampert, Salem was his name, who looked prime compared to their disheveled group. Judging them with a scrutinizing eye he looked over the collective while asking, "You all refugees of the Marsh?" It felt so judgemental to Reed, even if it was true, but no one dared argue with the commanding air he held. "If you're clean, come." He said simply while ushering them toward a large building. The group was weary, but as the only living creature they had seen in the place decided to follow nonetheless.
Turns out a group of survivors had settled in the abandoned buildings, protecting one another and setting up strict rules to insure their safety as a whole. It was a group comprised mostly of local Pokemon who understood the land and used what they knew to help one another. There was still selfishness and those only looking out for their families, but what they could share, they did, and their was safety in the system. Going out to hunt or forage in groups, taking out nearby undead as a team, tending to each others wounds when they could, and sharing in pain and loss. Though many of the Pokemon had had their lives uprooted a new sense of community was born among them over the coming months.
For Reed, it offered him a chance to act once again. He was younger than most, and his unevolved form spoke of immaturity or a lack of experience, but he never backed away from an opportunity. Hunting, fighting, bolstering their defenses, clean up, he willingly did it all. He had no friends or family with him now, so the Eevee poured his all into the community. He became a boisterous little go-getter, and while he did not gain any high rank he quickly became a favorite helper among them that was always called for aid. And, for a time, the daily routines allowed a since of normalcy. The community had plans, goals, and tasks to always keep them busy. The undead were a constant problem, with harsh rules and laws to protect their people, but it allowed them to keep healthy. The world was unsafe, but they had found a pocket to hide in. It wasn't the same, but life was okay.
But of course, it wouldn't last, and it once again flipped on Reed. A foraging party had to stray further than normal. Undead were spotted in the area and they were forced to change course, and the new foraging ground only had really tall fruiting trees. Reed wasn't the best tree climber, but his small size allowed him to stand on the high spindly branches, and never one to back down he climbed nonetheless. Obscured by the leaves and dropping his spoils down below he was focused on his task and didn't noticed the Burmy he was reaching past until the sharp pain of a Bug Bite sank into his forearm. Yelping, he reeled back his limb in horror as he spotted its burning red eyes. Instinct took over, and he dispatched the insect before further harm could come to him.
His party called out, asking if he was okay, and what had happened. The Eevee was shaken; he knew the thing was sick, but, but maybe it wasn't infectious? M-maybe he was okay. Its beak had only left a puncture, and without thinking he lied, "Yeah, a branch stabbed me is all." His shaky paws did not allow for the careful moment he needed up in the tree, and trembling on the thin branch was enough to shake the Burmy's corpse free. Though he reached he could not grab or hold it, and dread sank even deeper in his belly as it tumbled ungracefully to the ground below for the others see the truth.
When they returned home the group reported him. Even when cleaned the wound could not be hidden, and the body of the Burmy was checked for confirmation. There was only one course of action; for the safety of the whole they cast him out, condemning him to death.
The small Eevee didn't know what to do. In one swift decision he had everything he had left stripped from him. Emotions rattled the boy as he tried to rationalize it all. They had their protocols and he knew how harsh they were, but what if he wasn't infected? The wound had not turned yet, he could be perfectly fine! But no one would listen to him, any guards chasing the outcast away, and the fox was forced to wander the marsh he used to call home. For the first time he truly had no one. No one to help or comfort him, to defend him, to talk to, or simply be with. The silence was awful, as any noise was a bad sign, and the loneliness sunk deep into his soul.
The marsh felt tainted, the predators mad with disease and those that still lived within being overly weary and hostile for their own safety. Infected and undead alike gave him no quarter, and only his knowledge of the land allowed him to escape their jaws. Anyone he approached treated him unkindly, no matter how healthy he appeared to be. Whether it was the disease, desperation, or his headstrong attitude, Reed would snap back at their vile words, showing an angry Pokemon that proved their fears. Attacked, chased away, and threats on his life made the Eevee feel like vermin, and no matter how strong he acted the hatred and wounds he was collecting were quick to wear him down.
Wandering, limping, and alone with his thoughts he fell into the deep reaches of despair. He had been forsaken by everyone, everything, and would die alone.. or worse. It downright broke him. For the first time that he could recall Reed sobbed freely, unable to bottle the despair any longer. Charging through the marshland in a sniveling fit his paws must have carried him to the last place he had been happy.. the foul part of the swamp with the noxious water. Painful memories of that fateful day brought him to the waters edge, to the last spot he saw Johvani. What would she have done, how would she have gotten out of this situation with her endless wisdom? 'I wish you were here.' Reed cried like the blithering child he lost in himself so long ago, and he never heard or sensed the Pokemon creeping up behind him.
The sudden weight against his back was more than enough to knock the wind out of him, and the stabbing pain of toxic stingers prevented him from drawing in another. Reed struggled, kicking and flailing to see his assailant, and whether it was the deja vu or their distorted voice he realized who it was with a shocked gasp. "Eidan!" He wailed, bucking and managing to get the Skorupi off while his toxic stingers scoured deep gashes across his skin. The Pokemon was hardly the ex-friend he ran out so long ago, the disease giving him a sickly greyish discoloration and blazing red eyes. The sounds he made were just garbled words, nonsensical as the wounded Pokemon came at him again. "Piss off, Eidan!" He growled, trying to get away from the infected dual type, but its senses were sharpened, and as Reed tried to kick him away the Skorupi reached and gripped him with his pincer tail.
Struggling free of his grasp the Eevee turned back and scoured his own claws in to the Skorupi's flesh. Eidan hissed, but barely reacted to the attack as he continued to writhe and slash with his stingers. Biting the claw that was closest Lu'req managed to wriggle free, but it was short lived as a sudden fist came from behind, smashing him in the face and tossing him back to the ground. The voice that followed was clearer than the Skorupi's, simply panting, "Dumbass..." The sound was chilling as Reed stared with blurry vision at the purple spotted Azumarill. "Coming back here..." He was wheezing heavily, and thrust another fist toward him. Twisting and contorting Reed barely squirmed his way out range, and rotated the Skorupi into the attack. The force was enough to hear a cracking shell, a disturbing thought given the typing.
For all his efforts the scene felt eerily the same as the one all those years back. He struggled against his ex-friends, any headway always taken away by the other Pokemon, and he quickly found his strength waning. Poison was pulsing through his system, bringing him down even quicker as he failed to dodge. The Azumarill used his full weight to crush the Eevee, his thoughts blanking as the air was driven from his body. Lu'req struggled but couldn't move, and felt a harsh foot to his belly as he was kicked into the toxic water. Reed felt his mind fading, the ice cold water enough to shock his system and numb his legs. Falling deeper, he wondered, is this what Johvani felt..? Pain covered him all over, and in that dark abyss he felt so.. broken. Friendless, homeless, injured, going out in the same way his best friend had.. he accepted the coming oblivion.
But it was not to be. In a similar fashion to the one before him he smacked against the bottom of the toxic pool and against some angular stone. A surge of energy and warmth enveloped him as he evolved, his body feeling revitalized, and at least for a moment adrenaline revived his will to live. Kicking and swimming Reed shot to the surface, and clambering onto the land primal instinct fueled his motions. The infected pair had turned on each other in his absence and he took the opening for himself. Like a creature released from hell he violently mauled each in deep seeded revenge.
It was a fight for his life, a bloody brutal brawl spurred by a need to survive. As the adrenaline faded and the pair lay dead in front of him Reed felt no satisfaction. Pained, alone, and panting from his new wounds he no longer doubted his infected status. Hobbling away from that forsaken place Reed decided to wait out the end in his old den, resigning himself to the inevitable turn, or to die while waiting.
Weeks passed, yet.. his fate never came. He healed and scarred what he could, and slowly recovered from the incident. Watching the white of his paws Lu'req was amazed to see it never change from its pristine color. His mind remained clear, and aside from the bitterness and loneliness wearing at him he felt no different than normal. If the Burmy hadn't tainted him Eidan certainly had, yet by the gods he was somehow okay. He had cheated the disease yet.. it didn't offer him any comfort. He had still been condemned to death by his community, forsaken and left to die alone. As he healed and regained his strength the newly evolved Radeon let his emotions fester into a seething resentment. The community needed to acknowledge they had been wrong, and as a Pokemon vindicated of his 'crime' he trekked back to the shelter.
Showing no fear he demanded his way back in, his very existence an anomaly the Pokemon could not explain. Between his brilliant white fur and the clarity of his words Pokemon did not doubt his sanity nor his health, and the tale of his fight gained great interest from Salem himself as he was reintegrated into the group of survivors.
Over the coming weeks great change sparked throughout the community. Salem took personal interest in Reed, in his tale, his health, and what wasn't happening to him. It was their first instance of resistance, and the superstitious old Swampert saw it as a sign, a gift from Azelf himself. Bringing together the small handful of Radeon within their community Salem sought to place them on a 'special mission' of sorts. The other poison types were shocked, skeptical, but seeing is believing and Reed boasted the picture of health to them. Using Reed as 'proof' he wanted to test so many theories for this resistance.
With the aid of their best fighters Salem indoctrinated the group into a training regime to strengthen their muscles and teach them how to coordinate with one another as a team. It was intense, the first proper training Reed had ever had, and he struggled to keep up with the older Pokemon. But he was adaptable, spry, and quickly learned to work with his new form and the others to make the small team of Radeon's a true unit. Taught new skills and battle forms they flourished as fighters, all the while Salem reveled in their progress, ever increasing the stakes as he pushed their resistance testing further. It was outstanding, incredible, a miracle, and the old Swampert refused to squander the Legends' boon.
As the weeks passed and the poison type team began to boast their new skills Salem officially deployed them for their proposed purpose; protectors for their small village. The community was rightfully skeptical, resistance/immunity had never been heard of before and the task force was worryingly small. Despite this, the eeveelution's let their training speak for them. Taught to be quick and clever, to prey on an undead's weakness, and fight without fear in their hearts, the group was highly effective. Just a handful of successes was enough to get the ball rolling, and the group did what they could to purge the immediate vicinity of undead. When their new protectors took on wounds the community regarded when silently, their fates clear, but when they didn't turn disbelief turned to hope. It was a slow process, with more infected and undead popping up endlessly, but having a 'safe' way to irradiate them gave the Pokemon something to believe in.
Months passed, and their methods were refined to a semi-science. Working out effective scouting points, hot spots, perimeters and areas to check daily, the Radeon settled into their roles and became heroes to their community. For the first time since the virus' faithful introduction the community could live without fear, and it was truly a blessing from the lake trio. Reed felt himself glowing, finally proud of something he had achieved in life as he watched genuine joy return to the faces of his neighbors. He was a protector, guardian, and warrior rather than a murderer or executioner, a role with honor that he worked fiercely to uphold. Peace had returned to these Pokemon, like life before this cruel world, and the young Radeon swelled with pride knowing he had caused that.
But such feelings and moments of peace are fleeting. Praise devolved into complacency, expectations, disappointment, and anger. The Radeon were few, and could not be everywhere at once. Pokemon became too comfortable with the reduced number of undead nearby, and grew careless. Traveling without a protector, being too many for one Pokemon to look over. Slip ups, ambushes, surprises, mistakes, they were inevitable. The Radeon were not always successful, taking heavy damage and losses that were painfully noticeable when they numbered so few. When an innocent Pokemon was caught by the undead and succumb to the disease, or when a Radeon failed the fight and did not come home, the hero's were no longer seen so highly. They had an obligation, a job, and to fail made them beyond unworthy.
Frustration built up in Reed and made the headstrong Pokemon extra prickly. His team had become covered in battle scars, their spirits heavy and broken with each failure and the lack of positivity or gratefulness for their risky efforts. It became apparent they had been tasked with the impossible; undead were endless. No matter how many they killed more infected and undead would roam in and replace them. Pokemon could and would hide their infection until it was too late, causing outbreaks in areas that had been temporarily cleared. Their bloodstained paws grew tired, and their numbers only dwindled alongside their hope.. At some point Salem even decreed any Eevee in their community must become a [replacement] Radeon, though it was eventually repealed as successful evolutions were minimal and the method unclear.
Yet.. no matter the disrespect and deplorable treatment he was receiving, Reed still felt an obligation to his role. He was not personally invested in any one Pokemon, nor did he care for the bullshit now placed upon his species, but he still wished to protect, to do what he could for others. Protecting those that wandered, defending those that needed it, and guarding patrols as a glorified attack dog, Reed still did his job with pride. Something in the back of his mind yelled that this could not go on, this lifestyle could not support them and the community had to find another if they wished to survive. Until he could think of said other way Reed was willing to carry that weight with his head held high.
While guarding a patrol through the Marsh Reed felt his mind wandering. Salem was not wrong; the guard's service was the closest they had come to protection from the undead, but it was not flawless and by the gods it was not without repercussions. His thoughts drifted further, desperate for a solution, but they were snapped back in an instant by a horrified scream. Had he fucked up?! Taking off in the direction of the scream Reed searched for his charge in need, and saw an undead Floatzel crouched over someone it had pinned to the ground. Putting his training to use Reed leaped, catching the creature off guard and dispatching it before it could cause further harm. With a sickening gurgle and thump it collapsed to the ground, smothering its prey that struggled beneath the dead weight. Cringing at the motion, as he had tried to have it fall backward and away from it, he heaved and shoved the corpse off his charge. Cursing himself, as the victim would surely report his actions as careless rather than thank him for saving them, the Radeon was caught completely off guard as Pokemon managed to crawl free.
It wasn't someone from his group at all; creeping out from beneath the Floatzel was Johvani. Despite the years that had passed she was the spitting image of his memory from their last moments together. Dumbstruck, he froze up upon seeing her. How was it possible...? She was so healthy looking, all things considered, and it felt like a fever dream. As their eyes met he wailed her name just like he had as a kid, his voice practically breaking from a surge of emotion. Excitement buzzed between the two of them as she realized who he was as well, their bond rekindled in an instant as the pair made their way back to the community with the rest of the patrol.
Everything felt so surreal. Johvani was added to their defensive team to no ones surprise, and just as he remembered she gave no complaints about her new role. Surprisingly agile in the ways of battle she settled in easily, and the position allowed the pair to spend nearly all their time together. They immediately started to catch up and in a way it felt like old times. The stories they shared with each other were not happy, both of their lives having fucked turns or regretful memories, but both Pokemon felt they could speak freely of their tribulations and felt no judgement from one another. While he wished he could have done more for her Lu'req was just grateful she had made her way home. A genuine smile returned to his face, the coming weeks feeling so short as his spirits raised.
Having her there made Reed all the more convinced they had to find a new way to protect the community. One that didn't place the responsibility of so many on only a handful of tired, bloodied, defeated paws. One that took the pressure off his dwindling team, allowed them rest, and made sure everyone could protect themselves. Sustainability, practicality.. The creative Pokemon worked his brain for an idea, and he found several short term plans that perhaps, in tandem, could create a good long term solution. If nothing else they would ease his unit's stress and allow for leeway and recovery. As he watched Johvani smile and find a place among their fellows he knew it was imperative to put the plans into action.
As he approached Salem and to stake his claim the Swampert dodged the conversation. With an overly positive attitude he dismissed Reed, saying it would have to wait as he called a 'very important' meeting to all Pokemon in the community. Irritated, the Radeon resigned himself to approach again the second the meeting was over, and sat by Johvani to hear what was so damn important.
Salem beamed at his Pokemon, uncharacteristically optimistic as he spoke of their bright future. Foreboding prickled along Reed's pelt at the blatant lie. Just recently his unit had suffered great wounds, one member of which was forced into retirement from his grievous state and likely would not live long. But it didn't stop the Swampert from continuing on confidently that the community would not only survive but prosper. Their future was bright, as he put it, and that the next generation was upon them. Instead of much needed change they would be doubling down on their Radeon task force, reinforcing the eevee-to-radeon law, and would be looking to bolster their numbers.
He continued on with more and more sickening implications for the grim future. Appalled, Reed opposed the idea, screaming outright that this was bullshit. They were already being subjugated, but now they would make it unethical? The Radeon grew more exasperated with each point he brought up, but the room did not defend him. Salem argued its for the greater good, that there was no better cause to stand for than saving the lives of the many. He would hear no protest, and while Reed tried to continue the other villagers cheered the Swampert and their longevity.
It was unbelievable. Reed knew things were bad, that they had to change, but he did not realize how warped and corrupt his neighboring Pokemon had become in their complacency. They were blinded by their own safety, and it was unforgivable. Turning to Johvani he saw her staring at the Swampert in silent horror, her ruby eyes wide with a terror Reed had never seen before. From her confessions he could assume why, and did what little he could to calm her, but the other Radeon was visibly rattled and left the meeting before it could conclude.
As evening rolled around and they settled down together, Reed continued to console her, saying he had plans, he had practicality, he could fix this given time... but time just wasn't on their side. No matter how calm she tried to be he could see just how shaken and mortified she was by their coming future. Reed refused to be discouraged and swore he would make things right, but even his words felt hollow as they went to sleep.
When he awoke the next day she was gone. No one could find her or claim to have seen her, her scent trailing off into the Marsh and washed away by the night's rain. It was devastating, no, heartbreaking for the male Radeon, but his emotions were exacerbated by his leader's reaction. In the coming days Salem screamed they must find her, not because their member was missing but they needed the bitch so everyone else could stay safe, to protect their future. Its repulsive, immoral, unforgivable yet no one seemed even the least bit concerned. As the scouts came up empty handed Salem turned and personally blamed Reed for sneaking her out somehow, never for a moment taking responsibility for his sickening plans being the cause.
Reed was left speechless for the first time in his life. How had his leader fallen so far, become so blind?! With that final sentiment Reed lost any hope for change, any hope that these Pokemon were redeemable. In the coming days he was defiant, refusing all that was asked of him and doing whatever he pleased. Causing damage and havoc that would delay their 'plans' Reed went on a mini tirade. What could they do to him? He was accustomed to pain, been cast out before, and had no family to threaten. As far as he was concerned he was untouchable.
Though the destruction was cathartic it wouldn't fix this broken system and did not cure his frustrations. Even after disabling a particularly key item to their plans he felt no relief, and following in Johvani's footsteps defected from the home he had built. Knowing all the patrol and guard spots, it was easy for Reed to go undetected, and he disappeared without a word. Skulking through the marsh, he felt his mind whirling. Outrage, disappointment, justice, disgust... how had things fallen so far? He was a Pokemon of action who got things done, yet he let this mistreatment go on so long. He was no longer small, no longer a child who could not defend himself, and by the gods he had the tools to fix things. But he hadn't. He had failed those he was caring for and let it come to this. Cursing himself as he charged through the marsh Reed intended to make good on his promise; their would be change, he would make damn sure of it.
At the far end of the marsh he finally found Johvani's scent trail and followed it for every twist and turn. Praying she was still closeby, he found her at its end sequestered at one their old hangout spots. She was terrified, frightened that he had been tasked to drag her back to the community, but he quickly put those fears to rest. He understood why she had gone rogue and tried to empathize with her, but even attempting to answer why he was there came as a series of frustrated grunts until the floodgates were let loose. He confessed, pouring every thought, feeling, fear, and bitter idea that ever crossed his mind. What was once honorable and beautiful had become corrupt and unethical, and could not be allowed to continue. Reed practically screamed, how had he not done something sooner, brought it up, asked for change before it was too late, before it came to this?!
Johvani simply listened as he vented, her eyes never once casting judgement as the small Radeon everything and eventually settled. "I can't let this continue." He told her, the weight returning to his voice. Change would come by his paws, or he would die trying. He paused, thinking carefully. "You dont have to agree or stand beside me, but I dont want you to be alone anymore." He needed her, truly he did, but he would understand if she did not want to be part of his bloody plan. Company was all they needed to be, but he realized how much it was asking of her to be associated with his plans.
Johvani gave no protest, giving her gentle smile and saying she would always stay beside him. Though still burdened, a weight lifted from his mind and a relieved sigh managed its way free. Ever grateful for her presence, the pair headed deeper into the Marsh. They needed time, to plan, to plot, to bring reform. And by the legends, they would.
Outsourced to the next post, because having the histories together apparently breaches the character cap for one post. Oops.
| Bitter | Blunt | Rash | Headstrong | Decisive | Passionate | Aggressive | Brutal | Curt | Outgoing | Confident | Follows Through | Protective | Dedicated | "Fearless" | Perseveres | Holds His Convictions | Vocal | Cold | Determined | Short Tempered | Reasonable but Unmoving | Unfulfilled | Frustrated | Rather Reckless | Ruthless | Feisty | Worn by Attrition | "Means to an End" |
- Confident, brazen, and outspoken. A very vocal Pokemon unafraid to say whats on his mind. Full of piss and vinegar in every sense
- Very passionate and stands firm to his beliefs. While he will respect those of another he will not allow slander of his own.
- Mother never taught him the meaning of no, and mixed with his strong ideals he often struggles to or refuses to accept things not going his way.
- Where he was once imaginative and used his time to explore, he pours that energy into other types of creativity. He's a problem solver, one who 'gets out of the problem and into the solution,' and can not stand complacency.
- Argumentative, but not necessarily good with words or getting his point across with them.
- He has a deeply instilled desire to guard and protect those in need. He is not a servant but a savior, and will do what he can where others will or can not.
- Acts very cold and stern now, but is still kindhearted, as seen though his actions.
- Sturdy, while he can be a bit hot-headed he has learned not to take everything so personally. He can handle the beat down, the berating, and the horror without cracking.
- Willing to put in the work and work himself raw. Everything is a means to an end, and as long as their are results his efforts were not for nothing. Often, he takes on more than he can handle, but will never back away from a path he's chosen.
- Hard times and years of rough battles have hardened his once bubbly soul. A swirling abyss of anger and bitterness cloud him, making for a very negative Pokemon who vents with physical aggression.
- Oppressed and dominant. No longer respects leadership and always feels he could do a better job. Insubordinate and tries to take control, whether he realizes it or not. Refuses to be controlled, puppeteered, or take orders ever again.
- Intelligent but rash, an act-first-think-later sort of Pokemon. Forced to slow down and think in his adulthood but this headstrong Radeon still rushes in to situations out of habit.
- Curt and blunt, pushed around too many times to sugarcoat things. Life is hard and lies won't make it easier; hear the truth to make necessary changes.
- Acts fearless with a constant bravado. No challenge is too large, no problem too big if you have the courage/resolve to face it. Steadfast and will not back down.
- Same concept applies to battle, a literal embodiment of 'It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog." Larger opponents, hordes of undead, type disadvantages, Reed never succumbs to fear, no matter how poor the odds.
- While strategic Reed is reckless in battle. Wounds mean little to him, just a reminder that he's still alive, and as long as they dont slow or kill him they are inconsequential. Injuries are a means to an end.
- Impatient and restless, its difficult to accept any sort of lack of progress. Long term and slow goals are one thing, but stagnation is unacceptable. He has gained a temper as well, and has no patience for those who work at his short fuse.
- While he was made to be a guardian Pokemon being a mercenary was never crossed his mind. All the death and murder changed something inside him, and rationalizing it as a release from the virus could only do so much. Killing comes too easily to him now, and often he worries he will slip up and act against an innocent being.
- A child taught to never cry learned to never show weakness and struggles to processes many emotions. He will bottle all pain and sorrow, telling himself to stand above it. As such, expressing those feelings is incredibly difficult, and he struggles to keep friends close in his adulthood.
- Similarly, this emotionally stunted Pokemon also struggles to feel emotions on the positive side of the spectrum. When something good happens he can acknowledge joy or excitement, but there is no serotonin or physical emotion for him to experience. Its a lack of anything, a numbing, harrowing lack of feeling, making any reaction seem disingenuous and victories very hollow.
- While Reed would never regret the life he's lived the lack of results has left him unfulfilled. This is his home, and if he can not protect it, can not find a solution to this hell, them what was the point of his struggles? Frustration is wearing on him worse than all the death he has brought.
- Hunter. Years of feeding himself on top of locating his undead targets have made for a well versed predator. He's a great tracker, stalker, and well versed at reading the land. In the marsh he's truly in his element, and can only be found if he wants to be revealed.
- Hopeful. Despite the harsh years and the state of things only ever declining, he truly believes a better future is possible. Obscenely difficult perhaps, but possible. No matter how low he is beaten he will always rise again, spurred by hope he has poured all faith in to.
| Sweet | Gentle | Submissive | Somewhat Dim/Slow | Endless Patience | Appears Carefree | Quiet | Closed Off | Bottles Everything | Good Girl | Doesn't Complain | Solemn | Protective | Faceless | Motherly/Maternal | Easy Going | Relaxed | Supportive | Follower | Does as Told | Regretful | Ashamed | Disappointed | Trauma | Spineless | Gullible | Too Trusting | Grateful | Depressed | Humbled | Feels Worthless | No Future | Selfless |
- Criminally kind. Supportive and always looking for the positive side to a person or situation. Struggles to be cruel or negative no matter how justified the situation. Embodiment of 'Kill it with kindness.'
- Very quiet. Not much for conversation unless specially prompted or talking to Reed. Unless its a favored topic it can be hard for anyone other than Reed to get more than a few words out of her.
- Was absolutely humbled by her time as a lonely explorer and does not wish to repeat it. They do not need a ton of companions by their side, just Reed is enough. Would rather be with a group than on their own, but doesn't do well feeling isolated within a large group either.
- A beacon of serenity, from an outside perspective she had everything together and is unburdened by the world. Just being around this Pokemon can be very comforting and helps put others at ease. Does not react much to bad news and is usually very calm. Earned her the handle of 'big sister' and motherly figure.
- Nurturing, maternal, and absolutely adores children. Never tires of being around kids and has the patience of a saint. Its their heart's desire to see others [but mostly children] succeed, and wants to help teach and nurture bright futures where she can. Firmly believes kids should live carefree and happy, and its their job to promote those innocent childhoods.
- Selfless. Always puts others first and never asks for return payment. Another put of 'kill it with kindness' though she simply wants to promote the same from others and negate any sour outcome.
- Since childhood they have wanted to feel needed, wanted, and more so desired for who they are and not what they are. Always pays this desire forward; never asks others to change, and accepts things for face value. Everyone deserves to be happy and welcome as they are, and she knows even one supportive Pokemon can make a world of difference.
- Would call herself a follower and prefers being so now, but has no qualms with the limelight, leading, instructing, or working on her own. More of a go-with-the-flow kind of Pokemon and can adjust to pretty much anything. She isn't very picky either, and has no preference on what role she plays.
- Always willing and wanting to help or be needed. Often a bit too eager and desperate to be useful to a group in a bid to be included. Unfortunately this leads to them being easy to take advantage of, and worse Johvani probably wont realize it or speak up if xe does. Its par for the course, a side effect, something they accept rather than prevent.
- While usually very sweet she is not the best with words in situations where she does not agree. Her voice waned over the years and she is not one to talk back, but in an effort to regain herself she can be rather curt. Even a simple no comes off harsh, though she is not intentionally being unkind.
- Somewhat slow, they struggle with a lot of social cues and reading the room. Not super bright and takes a bit to realize things, but always gets there in the end. Outside of her own immediate perceptions she doesn't like delve into deep thought and prefers to leave it to Reed.
- Kind of a brick wall. Dense, and does not let things get to her. Does not react to much of anything or display enough emotion when she does. Stress, yelling, denial, starvation, no matter the strain she struggles to express herself even when asked directly, and appears unbothered
- Fairly private. Does not enjoy talking about the past or anything that isn't relevant to a situation or the present. Hard if not impossible to have her open up to others, and would rather not explain why she has certain knowledge or understandings.
- She's confident but has a low self-worth. She can do so much, but her efforts seem irrelevant, her presence unnecessary. A permeating sadness coats her words and motions, from the way she carries herself to the sad eyes and smile.
- Distanced. While she has her walls Johvani seems to make it a point not to get close to others. She wants to be around them, be a part of something again, but she's too cautious, too hurt to allow anyone in. She's an exceedingly kind Pokemon but she is not willing to be vulnerable.
- Can swim but loathes doing so. Still very traumatized by being submerged and any situation that reminds her of those incidents. Wetness, wading, rain, ect are all fine though. The Marsh is full of bogs and pools, this tall Pokemon can wade or stand in most situations, but the lingering fear and of falling below is always there.
- Weighed down by lingering regrets. So many things in her were not her choice and those 'decisions' haunt her. Things she did, things she didn't, the paths unwalked.. they've left a swirling abyss of unfilled emotions. Her life was not her own, her own dreams never allowed or even concepted as a possibility.
- Made to be a good girl, a follower, a listener, not a complainer, and its not a habit they consciously acknowledge enough to break. She would rather bottle up emotions and forget about them, and remain neutral. She's not prone to outbursts or breakdowns, but this technique has made it hard for her to understand her own emotions in general, along with wants and desires.
- Struggling with their past trauma. They would rather run than face it, repressing the tangle of emotions as much as possible. General trauma, abuse, child abandonment, disloyalty, to name a few, its all very painful and keeping it bottled inside can not be good for them.
- That being said, between what she carries and what its done to her Johvani is very depressed and dejected, but refuses to admit or accept it. The kind of Pokemon to smile while crying their eyes out, and does her best to never let that smile leave her face. Puts extra effort to into spreading positivity in the world but never feels it come back to her.