Jun 18, 2019 1:29 PM
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"Oh, I guess if you don't have Pokémon - they're good for keeping the wildlife off you but lots of people also battle them recreationally and to get them stronger so they're more effective at the wildlife thing. I enter tournaments sometimes to stay in good guild standing, I'm not great at it but I'm all right - mostly mine spar with each other or wild ones, though, I travel a lot."

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"Hmm," says Earth. Lightning shifts restlessly and looks like he might perhaps be about to say something. Earth wing-hugs him a little more firmly, and he subsides.

"How intelligent are Pokémon, in comparison to humans?" asks Earth.
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"Depends heavily on the 'mon. Mostly by individual, not species. My smartest is Zag. Except for legendaries basically none of them can talk, unless you count Chatot, but those are dumb as bricks and just do mimicry."

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"And what's a legendary?"

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"'Mon that you can't prove exist but that there are stories about, basically. Now and then you'll hear of a really bright Meowth or something picking up some human language, but it's - tabloid stuff, I'm not sure whether to buy it or not, Zag's quite bright and doesn't talk."

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"It's an interesting world you seem to have," says Earth. "Very different from ours. Did I understand you right when you seemed to imply earlier that there's no magic, or nothing you're used to calling magic, there?"

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"We don't usually call 'mon and the things they do magic. Magic's a fantasy stories thing. But some 'mon powers are big and poorly understood enough that people call it that as a shorthand. Fireflower's just... firey, but, like, my Dusk has a psychic attack, that's more arguable."

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"Elementals and the things we can do are generally considered magical, and there are humans who use magic as well," says Earth.

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"I'd need to know more to account for that. Come to think of it, it's pretty strange that we can understand each other."

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"Not exceptionally strange, to me," says Earth. "Elementals speak all the languages that exist on the planet when we coaelsce. I'm used to being able to understand most people. But you're right, it is a little odd. I wonder if it's a property of this place? Seems likely."

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"Maybe. I have no idea what it is. It looks like a bar, but..." She shrugs, and sits on a barstool.

It is a bar, agrees a napkin.

"Whoa!"
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Earth lets go of Lightning and walks closer to study the napkin.

"That's unexpected," he observes mildly.
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"A bit, yeah. Uh, hi?"

Hello. I'm the bar. First drink is free, says a new napkin.

"Uh... nice."
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"Does that apply to us, too?" asks Earth.

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Of course.

"How about my 'mon?"

I don't see why not.
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"Lightning," says Earth, "the nice talking bar is offering us a free drink each."

"Huh," says Lightning. "Isn't that nice of it. What's the catch?"
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I'm a she, napkins the bar. No catch.

"I'll take a, hmmm, an aspear slush for me and," she lets out a small dark 'mon with yellow markings, "Dusk likes aguav juice."

She gets two drinks.

Dusk laps up about half of his, and then is distracted by the elementals. He hops off his barstool and goes up to Earth, ears and nose and tail all twitching.

"You can pet him if you like, Dusk's friendly."
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"Hello," says Earth, leaning down to pet the creature. His leaves rustle.

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"Umbrrrr," says Dusk. He puts his forepaws on Earth's knee as though considering trying to climb him. He is soft.

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Pet pet pet. (Earth is very gentle.)

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"Do you want to see the others?"

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"I don't know," says Earth, smiling. "Do they want to see me?"

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"Of mine, Fireflower's the least friendly, and you've seen her. They wouldn't all fit in here if it were crowded, but it's not." And she releases her Pidgeot, Sawsbuck, Mienshao, and Linoone. "Rachis, Branch, Juu, and Zag," she says, scooping up the latter into her lap. "Maybe don't try to pet Rachis. Zag'll have a sweet egg milk," she tells Bar. Zag seems very excited about the phrase 'sweet egg milk'.

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Lightning spreads his crackling wings and backs away a few steps when there begin to be more creatures present. Earth continues to pet the Umbreon.

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Zag drinks his sweet egg milk. Dusk gets tired of being petted and finishes his juice. Branch looks around confusedly. Juu starts preening Rachis's feathers. Rachis seems to find Lightning intimidating, which Zag notices when he's done with his beverage and has slid out of his trainer's lap; he gets between the bird and the elementals and throws tiny little sparks of his own, chattering.

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