Published: April 13, 2014
EXPLORERS GUILD: Ready to Rumble
Date Joined: 3rd November 2013
Current Funds: 11 St
[1st MEMBER SIGNATURE] Patterson
-Characteristic: Likes to Fight
Gender: Male Age: Adult
Ability: Iron Fist (Punching moves are more powerful)
Strength:***** Agility: ***
Intelligence: ** Charisma: **
2-point Fighting-type Strength Bonus
Points Remaining: 0
Move 1: Mach Punch - A lightning fast straight punch that spears out incredibly quickly.
Move 2: Power-Up Punch - A rough close-range punch that increases the user's strength when it lands.
Move 3: Sky Uppercut - A razor-sharp uppercut thrown skywards. Can be incorporated into a vertical leap to strike an airborne opponent.
Move 4: Counter - A powerful counterpunch thrown after an enemy strike that returns the damage inflicted twice over.
-Item 1 Rampage Vest
----Description: A Red vest customised to have the appearance of a Tyrantrum. Has horizontal yellow tiger stripes across the back, a fur ruff, and a yellow crown motif directly in the centre on the back.
-Item 2 Customisation Voucher
----Description: Description: A voucher used to customise a piece of clothing at Chantelle's shop for free.
-Item 3 Bottle of Fresh Water
----Description: A flask of cool, clean water. Great for instant refreshment when clobbering foes on the go. Can be drunk to activate Water Sport and Aqua Ring simultaneously, or thrown to use Soak. One time use per assignment.
[2nd MEMBER SIGNATURE] Whitaker
-Characteristic: Thoroughly cunning
Gender: Male Age: Adult
Ability: Anticipation (Whitaker can sense if an opponent has certain dangerous moves)
Strength: *** Agility: ****
Intelligence: **** Charisma: *
1-Point Fighting-type Strength Bonus
1-Point Poison-type Intelligence Bonus
Points Remaining: 0
Move 1: Poison Jab - A quick jab with a poison-tipped claw. May leave the target inflicted with poisoning.
Move 2: Drain Punch - A strange energy wreathes Whitaker's fist. Striking the target with this allows him to leech their strength away to restore his own.
Move 3: Sucker Punch - A sudden strike launched as the enemy is using their own attack.
Move 4: Taunt - Whitaker insults the foe to provoke them into a blind rage.
-Item 1 Roughneck Vest
----Description: A black vest with a raised collar, metal studs around the bottom hem and on the shoulders, and a Krookodile's face adorning the back.
-Item 2 Two-by-Four
----Description: A heavy wooden plank. Good for building garden sheds and also for cracking people over the head. Allows the use of Wood Hammer.
-Item 3 Customisation Voucher
----Description: A voucher used to customise a piece of clothing at Chantelle's shop for free.
========== WRITTEN TEST ==========
The skies above Andallust were giving mixed signals, causing the merchants on the streets to grumble as they didn't know whether to move their stalls to sheltered spots or not. However, in front of the Explorer's Guild Hall, there was a more pleasant hustle and bustle as newly registered teams mingled together with more veteran guild members outside the entrance, comrades new and old cheerfully introducing themselves to each other.
However, the upbeat, cheery atmosphere was suddenly spoilt as the Guild Hall doors were flung open suddenly with a loud WHAM. A pair of disagreeable-looking fighting types sauntered over the threshold. The first of them was a broad-shouldered Hitmonchan who carried himself with a swagger that seemed to carry more than a trace of arrogance in it. He wore a garish red jacket with yellow stripes, along with a ruff of white fur. The obvious Tyrantrum motif seemed to sum up his own self-image to a tee. To his left was a lanky, yet somewhat menacing-looking Toxicroak, who at that moment was wearing a miffed scowl. He was also wearing a black vest with a raised collar that seemed to be meant to discourage other Pokémon from drawing close - as if the glaring Krookodile face on the back wasn't an obvious enough indicator. Their very presence seemed to exude a kind of negative energy, which didn't improve when they started bickering with each other.
"I still can't believe you actually practiced your signature ahead of time." The Toxicroak complained in a harsh, rasping voice. "I don't know why you're under the impression that anybody wants to be a part of your fan club."
"Well, it's come in handy twice already now!" The Hitmonchan retorted in a brash voice that seemed to be just a few decibels louder than was reasonable. "Besides, you're just jealous that I can actually write my own name and make it look good, even with these gloves on! Your signature looks like a Spinarak crawled across the paper, and you've got actual fingers to work with!"
"You're a total bighead, you know that?" The Toxicroak rasped angrily.
"Maybe that's because I know that people actually like me, unlike a certain someone I can name." The Hitmonchan fired back.
The two glared at one another fiercely, neither backing down. The pair were attracting a lot of glances now, some nervous, some just irritated at the stupid argument playing out in front of them. The nervous glances were accompanied by equally nervous mutterings asking what problem the two angry fighting-types had with one another, and the irritated ones were accompanied with some annoyed wishes for the two of them to be quiet. The two picked up on some of the latter, and the insult to the pair of them together suddenly seemed to remind them that they were a team. In unison they began to scan the crowd, searching for the offending speakers.
"Ahem." A small but unsubtle cough came from behind them, causing the two to spin around. They came face to face with a Servine leaning against a wall. The small smile playing across her snout, accompanied by the twinkle in her eyes as she nodded in the pair's direction, seemed to suggest that she was amused by what she'd seen from the pair so far.
"Talk about a first impression." She said, sounding a little cautious, but at the same time making a sincere effort to be friendly. "New, are you?" she asked.
"Uhh, yeah." The Toxicroak said a little cautiously himself. He wasn't quite sure how to approach this kind of friendly conversation, especially given that a fight wasn't far from breaking out a moment before. His Hitmonchan partner didn't seem to have any of the same qualms, however, as he thrust himself forward.
"That's right, we just signed up just now!" He said enthusiastically. "We might be signing up as small fry right now, but you'll be hearing great things about us soon enough, just wait and see!"
"Well now." The Servine responded, a little taken aback by the contrast between the standoffishness of the Toxicroak contrasted with the brash forwardness of the Hitmonchan. "New recruits with that little dash of moxie - that's what we're looking for. Still, that was kind of a stupid question I asked just now. Of course you're new, I just saw you sign in." The Servine confessed, a little nervously. "Admittedly I'm not great with this meet and greet stuff, so how about exchanging names to start things off? You first."
"Well, uhhhh, my name is..." The Toxicroak began to stammer cautiously.
"Hang on, my buddy's obviously in one of his little shy moods right now..." The Hitmonchan started to say.
"What? Am not!" The Toxicroak interrupted, sounding a little peeved. The Hitmonchan ignored him and continued.
"So let me introduce him for you. This badass frog here is called Whitaker. This guy is slipperier than an Eelektross, and wilier than a Delphox. There's nobody better to back you up in a brawl."
The Toxicroak grinned a little, starting to open up a little. "Well, I guess I can return the favour." He said. "This guy with the gloves here hits like a speeding Sharpedo and has the strength of ten Tauros. Nothing and nobody can stop him. His name is Patterson, but he responds to 'dumbass' as well."
Patterson laughed a little at Whitaker's jibe. The two were friends again. The Servine seemed to relax a little as well, as the tenseness in the scene drained away.
"Ahh, that's great. Yeah, when you said your names just then, it had that... that "zing". It means you're serious about this, yeah?" The Servine responded. "As for me, my name's Teresa. I'm what you'd call a Guild Assistant, which makes me your Serperior."
Whitaker was stunned. His mouth hung open slightly, his eyes wide in shock. That has to be the worst pun I've ever heard. He thought to himself. How do I even respond to that? Besides him Patterson just looked confused, as he scratched at the side of his head with one glove dumbly. He opened his mouth to say something, but he was cutoff by Teresa's sudden giggle.
"You know, you don't have to be so polite." She said. "I don't really care about rank and file, but I do care about honesty. If I tell a joke and it sucks, feel free to roll your eyes."
Patterson suddenly leaned in close to Whitaker's ear. "Whitaker?" He asked in a whisper.
"What?" Whitaker whispered back.
"I don't get it." The Hitmonchan responded.
Whitaker spun round on him. "Seriously?" He asked loudly and incredulously, drawing another couple of odd glances from the crowd around them. Teresa extended a pair of vines from her shoulders, extending them towards either one of them, offering a kind of odd handshake, in an effort to change the conversation back onto a more productive track. Whitaker looked at the tendril a little apprehensively, before carefully grasping the end of it, shaking it slowly and carefully. Patterson instead simply tapped his glove against the end of the vine as an impromptu fist-bump, drawing another small giggle from Teresa.
"So what brings you here, anyway?" she asked as she withdrew her vines. "You from out of town, or...?"
"Yeah, that's right. We've travelled all over the place, and we only just arrived in Andallust recently." Whitaker replied. "It's kind of a long story."
Teresa shrugged. "I've got a little time."
Whitaker scratched nervously at the back of his head. He was hoping that she wouldn't insist. "Welllll..." He murmured.
"Whitaker doesn't want to go into details of our long and sordid past." Patterson butted in. "Probably because he's a huge pansy."
Whitaker flinched a little, feeling a need to fill in some of the details as possible to prevent the wrong idea from coming across. "Well, our whole thing was kinda that we travelled from place to place, and got into trouble a lot. Um, on purpose. The both of us enjoyed fighting a lot, you see..."
"What do you mean, 'enjoyed?' Why are you speaking in the past tense?" Patterson interrupted, prompting a harsh glance and an elbow in the ribs from Whitaker.
"Quiet! She'll think we're just a pair of thugs!" He hissed.
"And you just wandered into Andallust randomly one day?" Teresa butted in herself, recognizing that Whitaker wasn't entirely comfortable with what he was talking about. "Cool, cool... Well, whatever the case, you've got a name in mind for your group, right? I didn't get a chance to check your papers, but I do want to get more familiar with our rookie members when I have the time. I'm kinda new to this whole assistant thing, honestly."
"A name?" Patterson said suddenly, while Whitaker sighed gently at being spared having to tell the full story of how they got to Andallust. "Damn right we do! We had a little help coming up with the name, though. I guess I ought to give a little credit to that Furret guy."
"Who do you mean?" Teresa asked. "Cuffin?"
"It was something that sounded like that." Patterson replied. "I think it was 'Colon.' But yeah, he helped inspire it. We're Team Ready to Rumble, the roughest, toughest pair of adventuring champions on this side of Parai! Pretty nifty, huh?"
Teresa smiled a little in approval. "There's that "zing" again. Feels good to know we've got Pokémon like you joining our Guild. I guess Cassidy wasn't exaggerating when he said the standouts just keep pouring in. Just don't get cocky - confidence is good, but overconfidence in a dungeon is a quick way to get yourself in trouble, along with everyone else in your party."
"Us? Cocky?" Patterson asked. "What gives you that idea?"
She made to ask another question, but hesitated for a moment, before finally gathering the resolve to ask. "There's another thing I'm curious about - it's quite important, I suppose. What exactly makes two Pokémon like you want to be Explorers?"
There was a moment's awkward silence, as Whitaker shifted nervously on the spot. Patterson, for once, wasn't forthcoming with an explanation, and was clearly feeling a little sheepish himself for some reason.
Teresa began to shake her head nervously. "I'm sorry, you don't have to answer if you don't want to - " she began to blurt, trying to backtrack.
"Hold on." Whitaker said. "It's alright, I'll answer. We used to travel from place to place, getting into brawls - kind of as a test of our strength, but also because we just enjoyed the violence too." He said. "I'm not proud to admit it, but it was looking like Andallust was the next place to fall victim to us. We were literally just about to start a bar brawl, when the big guy went berserk."
"You mean the great statue?" Teresa asked.
"Exactly." Patterson responded. "Long story short, we ran into the big blue guy who runs this whole operation, Lewis."
"I think you mean Luke." Teresa corrected him, quietly.
"Sure, whatever." Patterson said nonchalantly. "Anyway, he asked us for our help to bring that thing under control."
"And so we did." Whitaker added. "At first we did it solely as a macho thing - we didn't want anyone else to be given the privilege of being the biggest hellraiser in town - as far as we were concerned, that was our job, and we'd prove it by beating him down." He grimaced for a moment. "Well, that was the plan, anyway. I'm told that we helped, but we got our asses beat doing it."
Teresa cringed a little. "That must have hurt."
"You see, that's the funny part. We'd gotten a chance to fight, but this time we were thanked for it, instead of being driven out of town or arrested for it. Being praised like that..."
"It felt pretty good." Patterson admitted sheepishly. "Sure, whenever I beat someone up before, well, I always saw it as a chance to show off my own strength. Getting praise for doing something good though, well, that felt a hell of a lot nicer."
"Yeah, for sure." Whitaker agreed. "When we were offered the chance to join up with the Explorers, I figured that it'd be a great opportunity for a fresh start, and to put these fists of ours to a better cause." He flashed a wicked smile. "And besides, even though we got beat down hard fighting the Great Statue, it's one of the most fun fights we've been in. I get the feeling that we'll get a chance for more like it in the future, which is fine by me."
"Plus it's a chance for me to get some recognition!" Patterson added eagerly. "I've got to give away one autograph already, and I'd love a chance to give away more!" Whitaker quietly slapped a hand to his face in exasperation.
"And I presume that you guys are eager to serve the greater good, too? You know, medicine and food for the people, and all that?"
"Huh? Oh, sure." Patterson said unenthusiastically. "But mostly for autographs." Whitaker had brought his other hand to his face as well, doubling up his facepalm.
"You are such a bighead it's unreal." He groaned from behind his hands.
Teresa shifted a little nervously, obviously looking to change the subject again. "N-not to sound standoffish, but what exactly do you do, anyway? What skills or talents do you have to offer the Guild? Everyone's good at something, I think. I mean, I think I can sorta guess with you guys, but maybe it's better if you just tell me."
"Well, there's one thing that the pair of us are good at." Whitaker said, smiling a little. He had a golden opportunity to discuss both of their favourite subjects. "Brawling!"
"Not in the same way though." Patterson added. "Take Whitaker here, for instance. He's a real quick guy in a fight, and he's smart too - and he puts it into effect. He's really good at not getting hit in fights. He dodges all of his enemies' moves, sticks them with poison, and then he wears them down. He's even got this weird punch that lets him suck his opponent's health away. And then, when they're really tired, and really feeling the strain of the poison, he finishes them off."
"Yeeeaaah, that's really fun." Whitaker said, suddenly adopting a creepy tone of voice, and putting on a bone-chilling smile. "Nothing like running rings around some poor sucker and watching them just waste away." He let out a creepy, croaking laugh that caused Teresa to cringe away a little. He saw that, and snapped out of his macabre trance, looking a little embarrassed.
"Still, I don't hit as hard as Patterson here does." He went on to say. "He's got to be the toughest mon I've ever known. He's basically a force of nature. His punches can break down pretty much anything or anyone, and he has those Power-Up Punches that let him get even stronger the longer a fight goes on. He can hit really fast with his Mach Punch, and even if he's in a bad spot he can use his Counter to turn the tables."
Patterson suddenly banged his gloves together, a look of pride on his face. "I've never backed down from an opponent, and never will." He said. "It's a point of pride to me. However, I couldn't do it without my partner here." He said, suddenly reaching out with one arm and grabbing Whitaker by his shoulder, pulling the two of them together shoulder-to-shoulder. "He's always had my back, and I respect him more than anybody else in the world."
Whitaker grinned. "Yeah, it might not always look like it, but we've always been tight. That's probably our biggest strength of all." He said.
Teresa nodded approvingly. "I can just feel it, you do what you do and do it with everything you've got. 'Cause in this guild, when a giver gives, then the giver gets... gotten... gets give-- eh, well you get what you give, or something. Whatever, it's written down on that big plaque in the hall." She seemed to hear something else, and she looked around Patterson and Whitaker to look at something else. "Damn, I've got to go. We've been really busy with all these new recruits. Just do your best and come see me if you need any help. Welcome to the Explorers!"
And with that, she slipped around the two fighting types, and was off to take care of whatever problem had arisen.
Whitaker sighed. "Well, that wasn't as bad as I was expecting." He said. "Maybe this whole Explorers thing will work out."
"I know it will, Whit." Patterson responded. "I can just feel it. This is our avenue to greatne-" He paused suddenly.
Whitaker raised a confused eyebrow. "What is it?"
Patterson was quiet for a moment, before cracking a smile, which then broke into raucous laughter, causing more odd glances from the Pokémon around them.
"What's so damn funny?" Whitaker asked, annoyed.
Patterson started to wheeze a little, wiping tears of mirth away from one eye with a glove. "Oh man, I just got it. Our Serperior. Because she's a..." He couldn't complete the sentence before he broke into laughter again, this time louder than before. Whitaker slapped a palm to his face once more, and slowly began to walk away from the scene. Patterson followed him, still trying and failing to stifle his uproarious laughter.
"You are completely hopeless." Was all Whitaker could say as the pair slunk away, a dozen confused gazes following them.