Chocolate is Magic
((If you’re just now joining us, you can read Virtus’s backstory from the beginning by heading to the chapter index here: http://ask-lucario.tumblr.com/Backstory ))
“…frankly you’re more trouble than you’re worth,” an Espeon said strongly as he and Virtus huddled around a small fire in a cave close to town, “…but I promised your father I would watch you.” The Espeon, who introduced himself simply as Ken, was waiting this dank but somehow warm cave Virtus woke up in just an hour ago. Ken had taken the broken Lucario here after finding him in the midst of the storm, one of his own spikes sliding across his left wrist. “Clearly… I’ve failed him.”
Two days ago, Virtus found himself covered in blood in the warehouse, surrounded by two dead Pokémon, and with no memory of how Scyther was taken out. He closed his eyes, looking deep into his mind, trying to piece together the truth of what had happened that night. No matter how hard he tried though, all he could remember were the bodies, the smell of blood, a disquieting feeling deep inside him, and running into the rain. Everything blacks out after that until now… here, in this cave lit by an orange fire reflecting in the eyes of the two Pokémon.
Virtus couldn’t stand to look at the psychic type across from him. His head still throbbed and he almost felt like there should have been another Pokémon in the cave with them, but he saw no one other than the cold Espeon in front of him. Despite the pain, he was doing his best to process what he was just told. “In short… my father was involved with some mafia group… made a mistake… and that led that damned Scyther to…” he trailed off, burying his face into his paws with a low growl of contained rage. The scarf tightly wrapped on his left arm that Ken painstakingly applied was still slightly damp with his blood and it left a faint red mark on his face as they pressed together.
There was a pause before Ken slowly nodded. “More or less. The day before they came to you though, Issac met me in private and explained the situation. That’s when he made me the godfather of you and your brother… honestly I’m not entirely sure if he even knew what was about to happen at the time.”
Virtus glanced up through the red flames to Ken, “Issac? That’s my dad’s name?” he inquired. Ken could almost sense a mix of longing and hatred in his voice for just a moment before nodding.
“Yes… I guess that makes sense that you forgot, you were really young when they died after all. Issac and Claire were your parent’s names. Your brother was-“
“Victor. His name was Victor.” The Lucario interrupted, raising his head and sitting up straight. “I at least remember his name. I made a scarf for him, after all…” he reminisced as he stared at his left wrist. He fell silent and still with a pensive expression on his face. They both listened to the quiet cracking of the fire for half a minute before Ken broke the silence.
“I’m going to watch you for the next month, Virtus. Then you’re on your own.” he said as he stood up and made his way to a basket in the shadows. Stopping several strides away from it, he used psychic to lift the lid and take out a few berries along with a bundle of letters bound together with simple twine. “I won’t hear any objections and that’s final.”
Virtus shot up in disbelief, “You’ve gotta be joking! I’m no child, I can take care of myself! You have no right to keep me-” an oran berry cut him off as it flew and forced its way into his mouth, causing Virtus to choke on the air in his lungs for half a second.
“I said no objections, Virtus! That decision is tantamount to your father’s parental authority, he made me your godfather before he was murdered, and don’t you dare assume you can take care of yourself when if I hadn’t come along last night, you would have bled to death by now! I will not allow you to leave when you may very well do the stupidest thing you’ll ever do in your pathetic life!” Ken scolded the Lucario, almost screaming at him in utter rage, “You’re far from an adult! You disrespect EVERYTHING he did for you with such an attitude! He gave his LIFE for you, and you repay all of them by slicing yourself up?!” he slapped Virtus’s wrist as to emphasize his point.
The Lucario sat down, slowly took the oran berry out of his maw and stayed utterly silent. He simply stared at the fire for a minute before the bundle of letters and unorganized paper fell into his lap. “…wh-what’s this?” he stuttered as he picked them up and examined the parchment. There were hastily handwritten notes, names, places, diagrams & symbols strewn across all over the outside of the slightly crumpled bundle.
Ken slightly shook his head at himself, “I shouldn’t give them to you, but at least you can contemplate what you’ll do in the long run. Why you haven’t asked me yet is beyond me, so I’ll just tell you. I wasn’t trying to find you all these years, thus why you were alone. I wanted to get the bastards that murdered two of my best friends. Those notes are everything I’ve found in my hunt for Avian.”
Virtus cut the twine with his chest spike and the papers scattered around his feet. One piece remained in his paws and he read the largest words sketched in black ink: ‘dragon type’ “…what’s Avian?”
“The name of the mafia. I only found this out last week. Not to mention where one could look to find their headquarters and, subsequently, their leader. Whom I now believe is a dragon type Pokémon.” Ken replied telekinetically as he bit into one of the oran berries he pulled out earlier. “The only part that surprises me is that it’s apparently run by a Pokémon. I expected a human, but they seem to operate in the shadows of human crime organizations such as Team Rocket. But they have their own agenda, they’re not truly affiliated with any humans.”
Fire burned in Virtus’s eyes as he scanned the notes in front of him. Certain words and symbols jumped out at him such as an Absol-like blade, ‘Scyther’ was scrawled on one torn notes, ‘north’ was also written as well as names and phrases that Virtus couldn’t read. He, after all, never really learned how to read. He tried to teach himself, but he wasn’t the best. Better than most Pokémon, though. Strangely enough, one note was covered entirely in what he instantly recognized as Footprint Runes. “What’s with this one?” he asked with a tinge of urgency in his voice, holding up the note so that Ken could see it illuminated by the fire.
“A coded message I… borrowed from a certain Seviper who suddenly had a bit too many enigma berries in his diet. I can’t understand it though. I’ve never seen anything like it.” he said telepathically. He shrugged as he swallowed a sitrus berry.
Virtus studied the parchment and began reading it, “‘Carrier five has been compromised. His delivery was taken. Somebody’s snooping around. Switch all messages bound to and from Saffron to Footprint Runes. Consider all Espeons potential risks. Purge all like agents.’ and it’s signed ‘The Paladin’”
Ken stared at Virtus in total surprise, “You can read that?! Where did you learn to… wait, Espeo…. hahahaha!” he started laughing, almost pridefully. “Looks like I was having an effect on them after all! That letter is several months old though. Other than the fact that it confirms Saffron as one of their base of operations, it’s useless.”
Virtus wasn’t so sure, the codenames stuck out, but of course he had no idea what they meant. Looking it over, it seemed to imply that they had Espeon members. Keyword ‘had’: it also implies they got rid of all of them. Probably with force.
“Anyway, it’s late.” Ken sighed as he looked outside the cave to see nothing but blackness and fading rain “We’ll talk more about this tomorrow.”
Talk they did. Virtus agreed to stay for the month of time it took for his wrist to heal, but it healed faster than he expected. During the first week, Virtus feverishly studied his godfather’s notes with his help, piecing together the scraps of information scrawled onto them. It became clear that the group was especially talented in covering their tracks, but there was a definite lead. Saffron City in Kanto had to be where their main base of operations was hidden. After the second week of being pent up in a dank cave, never being allowed to leave “for your protection” Ken always said, Virtus decided it was time to avenge his family… and take revenge for what this so-called Avian group did to him. While Ken was out gathering berries to resupply their basket, Virtus took his chance to escape the cave and flee to the north side of Sinnoh. Forget respect to corpses he barely had the chance to get to know, to some Pokémon self-proclaiming himself to be his ‘protector’, he needed to satisfy his burning lust for payback. Revenge was all that drove him now, the image of Iris’s final moment clawed at the edges of his mind; his one ray of hope for a better life extinguished in mere moments by a psychopathic group that took his future away.
There would be blood.
As he made his way through Route 226, the air around Virtus started to feel off. It wasn’t just because of the falling snow slowly piling up around him or the few remaining minutes of sunlight as the flaming light in the sky crept down on the horizon. It took a moment before it occurred to him…
He wasn’t alone.
Yet he was. He didn’t sense any auras nearby and this particular area was clearly avoided by travelers, given how pristine yet wild the evergreens were here. It’s the same tension he felt… back in Ken’s cave. He kept his cool amid the calm snowfall, ignoring the paranoia creeping into his mind. The light was fading quickly, he had to make it to his destination soon or he’d have to find shelter. Luckily, it wasn’t far: the ship bound for Kanto tomorrow morning was docked in Snowpoint City. Virtus could see where the ocean bit into the land near the now glowing city. His quickened breath trailed behind him as he sprinted towards the human city.
Suddenly, he collapsed in inexplicable pain. His paws instinctively clenched onto his head in response to what felt like a Fury Swipe inside his skull. He grunted loudly as night fell, squirming on the snowy ground. He was on his back when he opened his eyes, struggling to think yet somehow knowing he needed help. The city wasn’t far. As he tried to pick himself up, his glance crossed the half-moon on the horizon. His body instantly went numb and finally gave way. As darkness took him, he heard a vaguely voice… almost as if it was coming from inside his head…
“…it’s beautiful…isn’t it…Virty…”
- Author’s notes:
WOW. FINALLY done with Ghosts of Antiquity! I hope everyone enjoyed this entry! I’ve put a lot of work into this chapter, I can’t tell you how many endings I considered for this. Probably a lot more than I should have.
In retrospect, the story that I wrote for Virtus ended up not being exactly what I originally wanted, unfortunately. I was having trouble trying to figure out how to write out some scenes that I wanted in there, and it shows. Regardless, because of the help that I received from a few blogs for the final chapters, the long hiatus I took over this past summer, and rewriting the premise several times, the ending wound up being much better than I originally imagined.
Virtus’s backstory, however, is not yet over… Ghosts of Antiquity is simply book one! In response to the great reception and support for ask-lucario, I’ve been inspired to continue with a deeper, better story! Ghosts of Antiquity was originally an experiment for me and I tried a number of ways to progress with the story and I’ve learned a lot from it. The next book, Avian, will be much more exciting! I have a couple of surprises in store, so I hope you’ll look forward to it! ^^
Some of you may realize there’s a problem with how it’s written now… I’m aware of the issues stemming from previous chapters of this backstory and I do plan to tweak the story as soon as time & motivation permit. The lack of consistent quality bothers me. However, this won’t mean that you’ll need to go back and reread the story. Nothing will fundamentally change with the progression, don’t worry.
Anyway, thank you so much for reading! If you have any feedback, positive and/or negative, please let me know. I encourage you to send me constructive criticism if you have any thoughts.
Somehow, I think you need to redefine ‘shy.’ *gets up and dusts self off*
I wouldn’t mind it, though. Do ya have anywhere in mind…?
Strong enough for two Pokémon… in a way you could say 7/10 and 13/10. It would take too long to explain why.
I’m just cool like that, lets just put it that way.
Wha- with no protection for my internal organ cells?! OHFU- *flatlines*
Stop. Just stop.
Do I look like I can drive?
IT’S SO DELICIOUS!!!
I CAN SEE INTO FOREVER!!!
Psychic types use the power of the mind for their telekinetic abilities. The Aura is different in that it’s derived from the spirit, powered by emotions, actions, personality, and of course life itself. The Aura is the reflection of your very being; Lucarios like myself are able to read this energy that radiates outward. Of course, we can also use and manipulate the excess energy in many useful ways as well.
Back to Lucario now. Queued posts for later tonight and tomorrow. \o/
Hey man, I prefer not to debate politics in public. It typically leads to a heated argument.
Gotta keep this blog friendly for everyone, you know.
G’day, I don’t believe I’ve had the pleasure of speaking to any Pon-
…wait, you’re not a Ponyta. What the heck are you?! Oh Arceus, you look like the sad, sad result of a lab experiment gone wrong…
Are you implying that I can’t fight by myself already…?