Re: [RP] Dreamwalkers
(OOC: Bwahahaha! Notorious long 1st post, yeah! >:D)
Reality//Castelia City, Unova
Narrow Street had always been a shady place in Unova’s bustling gem, Castelia City, but things only got worse after the Insomance epidemic. Before, it was haunted by brutes and thugs; now, it was flooded with the deranged and destitute insomniacs. Criminal activity had spiked when many stricken with the new disease became desperate to find an escape. Some of the measures they took were slightly less than legal. Thanks to the shelter its shadows provided, Narrow Street became a hot spot for Underground activity.
With this notoriety in mind, it was easy to understand why on this day a hooded figure felt uneasy about flitting about the alley. By no means was this a place she would want to hang about on any other afternoon, but like so many before her, she was at her wit’s end. A passing rumor had revived a flame of hope within her, and if there was a chance… She would take it. No matter the cost.
The hooded figure glanced over her shoulder multiple times, but didn’t stop until she reached her destination—the Café Sonata. Even before she pushed open the door, she could hear the solemn jazz music playing within. The song seemed half-heartedly played, as if the players were falling asleep at their instruments. She pressed her lips together, knowing that it was probably the other way around. Bracing herself, she eased the door open and slid inside.
Despite being high noon, the café was abandoned. Only two other people occupied the dimly-lit building besides the waiter and the band. Glancing to the other customers, the hooded figure wondered if she was too late. They didn’t seem familiar. Had she missed him? Keeping her hood up, she walked up to the counted as quietly as she could. No one but the barista paid any attention to her as she approached.
“’Cuse me,” she squeaked in a soft voice. “I’m looking for a Mister Thatcher?”
“Aren’t we both?” the barista grumbled, loading his coffee machine. “He owes me two week’s worth of rent.”
“Rent?” the young woman furrowed her brows beneath her hood, not following.
With an exasperated sigh, the barista pointed towards upwards. “Yeah. The scamp’s been renting out a room upstairs, and hasn’t paid us a cent since coming here.”
“Is he up there now?” she followed his pointed finger.
“Beats me. Stairs are over there,” he indicated with a nod of his head. “Feel free to go check. If he is up there, would you mind telling him that he’s got 24 hours until my boss sics his Krookodile on him.”
The hooded figure thanked him and quickly made her way up the stairs, feeling awkward the whole time. She prayed that he would be here—if not, she wasn’t sure what she would do. The attic of the café was musty and dark, and the stairway led up to only a trio of doors. One had a sign declaring OFFICE on it, while another had an eyehole in its center. Taking her chances on the latter, she briskly rapped her knuckles below the hole.
Despair overwhelmed her as no immediate reply came. She tried again, but as minutes rolled by it seemed clear that she had reached a dead end. The young woman stood in place and stared at the door as she fought back tears. What a fool I was, thinking there was hope, she scolded herself. Just as she was about to turn back around, the handle moved. She held her breath as the door slowly cracked open, but instead of seeing the person she was expecting…
A golden, fox-shaped face looked up at her expectantly.
An abra? She blinked in surprise. Now that wasn’t a creature you would see very often in Unova. She waited for its owner to appear, but the silence only deepened as the Pokémon continued staring at her through slitted eyes.
Growing uncomfortable under its unflinching gaze, she finally cleared her throat and asked, “Er, is Lee here?”
The Abra said nothing of course, and the woman immediately felt sheepish. What point in there was talking to the Pokémon? It probably didn’t understand her! And how was she supposed to understand it, if it tried to communicate back? Still… she needed to find Lee Thatcher.
“Look, I just want to, er, inquire about his… Um, his services.”
The fox-like creature stared for a moment later, then slipped back behind the door. Seconds later, a hand shot out from the darkness beyond—a human hand—and caught hold of her forearm. She shrieked as she was practically yanked from the hallway.
“Shh!” a voice hissed at her. “Keep it down! Don’t want to disturb the neighbors, do ya?”
She yanked free of the mysterious hand’s grip and stumbled backwards in the dark room. “Who are you?” She narrowed her eyes, trying to discern the forms around her, but it was too dark.
“Your worst nightmare…” the prior voice took on a creepy, gravely tone—though its effect was quickly dispersed when it let out a sudden guffaw. “Nah, just joshing ya. I’ll tell you in a second, but first you gotta tell me. What kind of services do you need? Cuz I’d be more than happy to accommodate a fine young lady like yourself.”
Was this guy for real? Taking on a stance she hoped was defiant, she bluntly declared, “I need a Dreamwalker.”
“Oh,” the voice sounded a little disappointed. “That kind of service… Well then, in that case...”
A light suddenly switched on, stinging the young woman’s eyes. Blinking past the pain, she finally caught sight of the voice’s owner: a spiky, black-haired young man with a cocky smirk plastered across his face. The Abra she had seen earlier was at his side, continuing its merciless scrutinizing.
“Allow me to introduce myself,” the teen gave an exaggerated bow, twirling his wrist in circles. “I am the notorious Lee Thatcher, and this is my trusty partner Shadow. What can we do for you today?”
She studied him cautiously. This was the Lee she had been searching for? A boy? Well, he certainly wasn’t what she had been expecting…
“Is it true that you can...” she hesitantly asked.
“That I can cross over into dreams?” the boy flopped down into an armchair across the room. Folding his arms behind his head, he affirmed, “Yep, sure have.”
Still uncertain, she went further, “And is it true that you can…”
He chuckled, “Man, quite the skeptic, aren’t ya? Come on, if you’re here, then you must already know—Yes, I can cross over into dreams and fight the Insomance. And yes; for every one of those suckers defeated, someone on this side is cured of their disease. Well, one of their diseases, anyway.”
“So…” she swallowed, fighting back her nerves. “You can free a friend of mine?”
“I could,” he frowned, acting aloof as he scratched his chin. “For a price… It ain’t always easy, ya know.”
Now came the moment she dreaded. Still, she was prepared. “I’m willing to pay however much it takes.”
“Is that so?” Lee cocked a brow.
“I’ve lost someone very important to me,” she fixed him with a hard glare. “And I want him back.”
That cocky grin of his returned. “Is that so?” he repeated. “Sounds like we’re in business.”
(OOC: Just thought I'd do this first point in some random person's point of view. She's not a major character or anything, but she'll be part of Lee's motivation throughout his story ;D)