Re: Mt. Deckbi
I chuckled at the letter pinned to the noticeboard. No one had yet managed to determine who the author was, but we all knew who it was addressed to and what it was. It was a love letter to Ivy Frost from an anonymous source, which Buzz had managed to photocopy. As far as we knew, Ivy hadn't yet cottoned on to the fact that the letter was proudly on display for all to see. Hell, I checked it out every time I walked past.
I heard Buzz's own chuckle from across the room, and I knew that he would be looking at me. I sighed. Despite being an Elite Ranger, I was still the butt-monkey of the Park Staff, prone to being joked about, laughed at, and having pranks played on me. Most of them by Buzz and Leo, but still.
The chuckling continued. Perhaps he was laughing about the love letter, and not about me. My mind grimaced - of course he was laughing at me, but I could at least pretend I didn't know that. I looked around and shot Buzz a grin. The grin soon dissipated, though; Ivy Frost herself was walking up behind Buzz, and he had no idea. My eyes widened - Buzz was pretty good at covering himself, but a pissed-off Ivy was no match for anybody.
Ivy put her hands on her hips and began to say something to Buzz. I couldn't hear it over the quiet murmur of people working, but I could see Buzz reply and then turn back to look at me.
"Chainy, get your ass over here!" he called to me.
I sighed as I walked over. No respect.
"Whaddaya want, Buzz?" I asked him, trying to sound terse.
"Got orders from the Boss. Taking Ivy here on a run and you're going to come with," he said.
"But I got a metric ass-ton of paperwork, and the new Preen game just came out," I protested.
"Well that's too damn bad, isn't it?" Buzz replied smugly. "You've got fifteen minutes to put your make-up on and meet us outside the gates to Deckbi."
"Awwwww, Deckbi?" I whined. "Really? It's super hot right now."
"Too bad, Boss' orders," Buzz said with a tone of finality as he turned around and walked to get his stuff. I rolled my eyes at Ivy.
"What, don't you want to go on a run with me?" she asked, grinning evilly.
There were few secrets amongst the Park Staff. Everyone was pretty well known. EVERYONE knew of my woman-based antics, but they also knew of my chiroptophobia, or fear of bats. Ivy was certainly a nice package, but one of her partner Pokemon was a Crobat, which immediately presented certain problems. It also didn't help that Ivy wasn't at all like my usual targets - strong, confident and wielding authority as opposed to meek secretaries or shy Trainers overcome by my confidence.
"It's not that," I muttered.
"Then what is it?" she inquired, tilting her head to the side, keeping her hands on her hips.
Rather than answer, I fled to the male locker rooms, where she couldn't give chase. It was fairly common knowledge that Ivy wasn't particularly looking for a relationship, but she enjoyed needling and teasing us sometimes. My default reaction to this treatment was to run - probably a bad move in retrospect, as I was pretty sure Ivy enjoyed seeing me run.
I quickly dressed in my usual casual attire, not my Ranger uniform. I made sure to wear heat-resistant clothing, specifically cream-coloured shorts and a yellow shirt. I kept my thick black boots on though - I didn't trust the treacherous terrain around the Deckbi Ranges. I also kept my Aura Reader - it often came in handy, and provided all kinds of technological advantages to me. One thing I did leave behind was my handgun. The higher-ups barely tolerated it when I was acting in an official Ranger capacity - no way they'd let me go through the Park as a Trainer with it. Besides, I wouldn't need it - despite being a butthole, Buzz was a competent Ranger, and I trusted him to do his job.
Once I was done, I summoned Dual with a brief flick of my mind. He quickly appeared in a flash of blue light. The Gallade was panting slightly - I'd probably caught him right in the middle of his training exercises.
Alright buddy, we're heading off to Deckbi for a run, I said through our mind link.
<Deckbi? Really? But it's so hot there,> he complained.
Dude, tell me about it, I thought wryly, that's exactly what I said.
Dual grumbled, but reached out and placed a hand on my shoulder. The world turned blue and distorted, and I felt a yank inside my abdomen as we teleported away.