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Aug 22, 2019 6:31 PM
Solar Ari in Pokémon
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Cinnabar Labs is an elegant building full of lab-coated men and women in glass-walled rooms. They're doing complicated things to machinery, moving tiny quantities of liquid between tiny containers, etc. One of them sets a timer going, leans back in her seat, and notices Aril. "Oh, hello! What brings you here?"

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"Hello! I'm actually trying to learn, well, everything. Specifically about Pokéballs and those healing machines they have in the Pokécenters, but also about the things people keep in their pockets that do a variety of things, and if there's anything else I'm missing then that too. I'm from very far away, and we don't have any of those things."

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"Hmm! If you want a proper education you should enroll in a school, but if you just want to learn how to use those things I can give you the short version. Or you can buy a Pokétech and I can show you how to use the encyclopedia function, that will probably have everything you want to know and then some."

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"Oh, an encyclopedia function sounds like exactly what I'm looking for. Would I find a Pokétech at the Pokémart, is everything, uh, centralized like that?"

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"I don't know if all Pokemarts have them, but the one here does. It's just up the street." Probably-unnecessary pointing.

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Aril goes to make the purchase, prepared with another koku in case his almost five thousand P$ aren't enough.

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It's enough; the refurbished Pokétechs they have are good as new and only P$2500. 

When Aril exits the shop, there's a cluster of people in all-red outfits hanging around behind the lab building. They have their heads together and are muttering to each other in a very suspicious manner.

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How very suspicious. Aril listens in, without indicating in any way that he is doing so.

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They are saying suspicious things! Apparently they want to steal some seismograph data from the lab here and use it to locate . . . Something. They don't refer to it directly, but it's clearly a big deal.

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Aril approaches them. "Hey! I can probably help you get the data you need if you tell me what you're looking for."

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Upon realizing he's there, they all startle away from each other, but calm down a bit on hearing his offer of help. They exchange a couple rounds of nervous glances, then one of them says, "We're looking for the center of the little earthquakes that happen occasionally. For where they're coming from." Then another one glares at him and he shuts up.

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Aril does not need Eye of the Unconquered Sun to see that this is bullshit. 

“I’m not a cop, man. I just want to know that I’m not helping you break one of the Elemental Poles or something.”

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More sketchy glances, then a different one says, "We really are looking for earthquake data. We want to find a legendary Pokémon that's been sleeping underground somewhere." (She's telling the truth.)

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“Oh, cool! What’re you going to do when you find it?”

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"It's more about what it's going to do, really," says one, before another one stomps on his foot.

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"...okay, seriously though, what are you going to do with it, I'm not helping you enslave a tectonic spirit or bring about the apocalypse or something."

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"What? No. Groudon is the legendary Pokémon of the land, it's going to make the continent bigger."

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“...is it not big enough?”

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"Who cares? There's gonna be a legendary Pokémon raising land outta the sea! How is that not obviously the coolest?!"

"Keep your voice down!"

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"Have you considered that this is very stupid."

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"Stupidly awesome, maybe."

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"Rrrright. This sounds like a disaster on every possible level, and you do seem incompetent but not enough that I'm not worried about you actually accomplishing your stupid goals. So I'm going to have to stop you."

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"Hey!" One of them throws a Pokéball; a Wheezing comes out. "Let's settle this!"

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Aril punches it in the face. "Ew."

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It starts spewing green gas at him! A normal human would be choking on it.

"Uh." says the one who threw it. "Aren't you gonna Pokémon battle?"

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