Trainer School, Viridian City
(5703 Characters, 5 Points total)
Here he was. Ready to take on the world. He set his alarm clock slightly early-7:30 AM, instead of 8-so he could get dressed. He had his Pokemon, his clothes, his PokeGear, his everything. He was as prepared for this as any other.
But looking through the internet (on his PokeGear), as a final check of the Defensive Master, Markus finally caught on to a certian detail that would have made him grumpy about this from the very beginning. At least he got 'practice' from blocking out his mind by hiding information from Aunt Sabs-'practice,' as in, failed attempts. They were getting better the more he did it, but they were always failed attempts.
Reading his private mind? Really? Bull****. What's in one's head should REMAIN in one's head unless he makes it known otherwise. Yet, here was blatant proof of what would make this potentially as miserable as HELL: Max was a f***ing Mage. He HATED Mages with a burning passion, especially Aunt Sabrina (though that was a more personal thing). He knew two of the Mages, one Light and one Dark (and both subject to equal amounts of scorn by Markus), were chosen to go with him, but they were weak and he could block them out easily. Max was experianced, however. Not as experianced as his Aunt, of course, having chosen more of a Pokemon battling route than a Mage training route (Sabs didn't even think of stopping her mental training until she was considered an Elder Mage, apparently, and still trained harder for a few extra years until finally traveling with Pokemon), but still experianced enough to make his head hurt.
Henceforth, he came to the dining hall with a particuarily grumpy attitude, like he didn't have one already. He had one hell of a dream.
But it was just one detail, over and over, like a broken record. Just someone dead, in a pool of his own blood. Nobody he knew, either, a random police officer, judging from the uniform, but nobody he knew either way. The badge wasn't familiar of any police officer's badge from anywhere he knew of.. After five seconds of that, he would look up, get knocked down by something
(it felt like a person's elbow was being rammed into his head, but he couldn't tell), and repeat the whole process over again.
...C**py dream in every expectation of a dream. It wasn't even terribly vivid: Blurry, in every aspect blurry.
Epic the Nidoran was happily nibbling away on food in front of him in the dining room, and Markus was drinking orange juice, done with a platefull of Bacon. He ate a c**pton. He wasn't expecting frequent stops in civilized areas. A Route took a day to travel at its shortest. Camping was a must. He took enough stuff with him to let his conditions be good, and took only as much as it would take to evade putting his life at risk if (or when) he got lost and was separated from the group.
...Getting lost. He heard about that kid. Lost. No trace. Not even a clue. Not even a smidgen of a clue. You had to wonder if he was really lost...Or was kidnapped...Or was...Something else. Markus KNEW what a person going through such drastic life changes could become. He's heard of one instance where the worst-case scenario happened, and turned a semi-regular twelve-year old kid into a nightmare of a man (a nightmare to face, that is). He wondered what the lost kid's name was.
He had a BAD feeling, all of a sudden, that said kid would be related to this.
...The real purpose behind the trip wasn't a test of redemption for Ten-Year olds: This was a plan for economic stimulus. They were protecting the kids with one of the best, supposedly, but Markus knew of better. Ultimately, Max wasn't just doing this for the kids, no matter how much his motivations were aligned towards them: He was doing this for the cash the Leauge brought him. He was a former Multi-Regional Champion. He was smart. He had good Pokemon. But he was ultimately unproven, an enigma, as many were Champions for only a little while.
He finally saw the man he was supposed to be traveling with, long after he got prepared. There were others around him, including two Eli's (one Eli Moto, and another Eli Connor), the two aformentioned Mages, and a variety of others. They were the top scorers in their classes, or were proven to be bada** battlers, or both. Markus had fair grades, but his defeat of a Mr. Mime with a Nidoran was what landed him here, so he belonged in the latter catagory. Either way, they totaled nine, ten with the Defense Master. Ten people. One Journey through Kanto. What could go wrong? EVERYTHING.
And Markus knew it too. Every last single thing could go wrong. He KNEW he needed that knife and that lighter. He KNEW he would need every last little Penny. He KNEW that Max would, eventually, fail them. And not on purpose, not just to teach them a lesson, not to spar with them: No, when they needed it most. He would be prepared. Or dead. He liked the former option, personally.
"Well what are we waiting for?" Max said. As if he didn't know the answer.
Markus answered ASAP (As Sarcastic As Possible): "Good question. What ARE we waiting for? A Defensive Master, obviously, which you have been appointed to! So, what were we waiting for you to finish?!"
Markus barked. He wasn't in the best mood. 15 minutes late. He was impatiant. The DM didn't get off to a terrific start.
Epic was a nicer Mon than his master was a person. This did not equal that he did not agree with his master on more reasonable points, and the lateness of their guide was one of them. He looked on towards the DM, piercingly, but not angrily-more like, as if to figure out the answer first. Nidoran weren't Psychic, but they could give a nasty stare.