literature

PMDU - Tiny Patroller...?

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Zach was humming some strange tune to himself as he stuffed the bread pieces with some berry jam of some sort. I couldn't identify it from the doorway. Beside him on the counter sat a number of...'Charti Bobs,' (I think?) Along with a large chunk of skewered meatroot. Dad -err, Zach- really likes to cook, I don't even need my horns to know how happy he is behind the counter.

My mouth was watering from the smell of everything in the rather large kitchen, I would have gone in to sneak off with something if Da -Zach- wasn't there. He always knows when I try to sneak food out of kitchens, even Kaila's when we visit. At least I ate a while ago.

I could hear the soft, uneven scratching of claws against the sand as someone, a Sneasel, suddenly crawled to the other side of the doorway, also peering in. I was completely ready to tackle them with my..uh..insignificant weight...but I looked closer at the intruder. Their fur was matted, and rather muddy (I haven't seen mud for miles, and it hasn't rained in days), and their forehead gem was slightly cracked. An obscenely long, faded grey scarf was wrapped loosely around their neck, the only part of them that wasn't dusty or muddy. At the sullen look on his face, and the intense fear and sadness emanating off him, I recognized him, Albatross, Wilbert's brother that's always beside him...Except now he's alone? I wonder how he got this far without breaking down. I'm impressed.

I breathed a sigh of relief, and only then did he seem to notice me standing directly next to him. His face scrunched up as panic started to overtake him, so I backed up a bit, held out my hands, and softly whispered, "Hey hey hey, it's okay Albert, it's okay," his breathing hitched as I talked, "it's just me, Dianna, your friend. You're safe, it's okay." He took a moment to process this, eyeing the scar on my arm to keep himself anchored, then nodded as his breathing settled. I'm glad Zachary told me how to deal with these situations.

He finally held out his hand, so I grabbed it and moved to sit beside him against the wall. He squeezed my hand a little harder, his signal for me to talk. "What'cha doing out here, Albert?" Good to start casually.

He smiled shakily as he replied, "I, uh, saw t-the guilds funneling through the d-dungeon you guys cleared out, s-so I followed after everyone had gone. I kinda...You know h-how I am with crowds," I nod, "so I waited until it was dark to look for you and Zachary." That's right, Albert loves watching the guilds do their thing. Zach has a special present waiting for this guy after the cookout's over. He deserves it.

I hope so, at least. That’s what d-Zach told me. His laughter echoing out the door of the kitchen seemed like a confirmation. The door suddenly slamming shut was just rude.

“Does Will know you’re out here?” Guilt.

“N-no, I uh...I did tell him where I was going though…” He chuckled, trying to hide the thickening, inky guilt practically leaking off him. I wish people wouldn’t do that. It just hurts them. I squeezed his hand again and tried to glare at him when he looked down at me, even if he would only see my frown. I hate it when I make people feel worse. ”I know, I’m s-sorry D,” he scratched his head nervously, “I didn’t think he’d let me come if I told him.”

“He’ll be okay with this, just be sure to write to him later, okay?”

“Y-yea, I’ll do that.”

With one last smile, he eases a little. The silence spanning the next few minutes is nice. He seems to be enjoying the warmer night of this place, though he’s still gripping my hand like it’s the only thing keeping him here. 

...

Wait.

I was supposed to do something.


“I was supposed to leave for patrol half an hour ago!” I hiss through clenched teeth, shooting up to my feet.

I messed up, I messed up now we’re gonna get in trouble and Zachary’s gonna get mad at me andIdontwanthimtobemadIdon-”I-i could carry you.” I whipped around to Albert. He continued, “You’re really worried about not being out t-there,” shit, I probably said my thoughts out loud, “i-if I carry you, we can get out there faster, and Z-zaa…You won’t get yourself in trouble.”

That...might maybe work considering he’s three times my height, and rather fast to boot. I could even use his height to see further into the distance and not be alone out there and- oh he’s staring uhh. “Yes, that sounds excellent, thank you Albert.” And with that I was suddenly lifted off the ground as my new partner stood up, and then held me over his head. In a short moment I was comfortably seated on his shoulders and we were heading off into the outskirts.

“W-we’re not gonna have to fight, are we?” Albert asked suddenly.

I shrugged and told him, “You won’t, but if we find someone trying to sneak in then I’ll have to.”

“Oh good...Wait why only you?”

“Zach said that, uh…’npcs?’...weren’t allowed to do guild jobs.”

“Npc?”

“Anyone not in a guild, it’s a rule, apparently.”

“Oh, I d-didn’t know the guilds had a rulebook.”

“I didn’t either,” I whisper. There’s two pokemon running directly to the camp -scratch that, to us.- I hop off of Al and face the coming pokemon as he hides behind a cactus. As they get closer I hear them talking, and they’re almost familiar…

”DIANNA!” The Espurr in the lead suddenly shouts, voice hoarse. And then the Banette behind him becomes visible. It’s Norman and Carrie. Did...did they run all the way here? The Espurr slows as he reaches me, then starts multiple incoherent statements about Andalusst, new teams, and running, before collapsing into my arms, immediately passing out.

Carrie falls to her knees, stares at me for a moment, and then screams at the sky. The scream nearly causes Albert to fling himself into the cactus he’s hiding behind, and lasts for quite a few seconds before she stops...and falls face-down to the ground. Quite an...experience…We should get them to the camp. ”Albert, can you grab the Banette? We need to get these two to the camp!”

“O-o-ok!”

We could continue the patrol afterwards.
Featuring
Team Orian

Tasks Completed
Cookout: Recruitment Slip
Patrol(?): +3 Star Coins

On today's episode of 'I don't know, What?" I prove that I can't go a single task without Zach causing some fourth-wall breaking, I try first person with li'l Dianna, Albatross gets a day in the spotlight, and Carrie does weird things again. Heh heh nyeh.
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