Oct 20, 2021 5:19 AM
Eliza in Sentinels of the Multiverse
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"So these...Pokemon...are the equivalent of animals in your world? What I've seen of them suggests a truly staggering evolutionary history, if they even evolved at all. They seem highly trainable - are they sentient?"

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"Well, not every Pokemon evolves," notes Eliza. "Some just have one stage...wait, is this the other definition of 'evolution'?" She blinks a bit, before picking up the last question. "Um...yeah, I think that's the right word. They're really smart and mostly good at understanding humans. Some of them are better at it than others."

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"Which definitions of evolution are you familiar with?" 

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"Well...the one I'm most familiar with is how Pokemon evolve. Some of them start out in smaller, weaker forms and then get bigger and stronger. Like Blade used to be a tiny Pidgey." She holds out her hands to manifest an image of the smaller bird in said hands. "But most other people I've talked to says that's not how evolution works and it's more...long-term? Like how birds and dinosaurs are the same?" She sounds slightly suspicious of that idea.

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"Oh, you can do illusions as well? In our world animals don't - evolve in the sense you describe - at least unless magic is involved. Birds and dinosaurs are related species - it's easier to see if you look at bone structure." But now is not the time for a lesson in evolutionary biology; time enough for that later. The mission first. 

Between grunts of stress imposed by the weight of their prisoner, Wraith spends the rest of the journey to the holding cells grilling Eliza on the minutiae of her abilities and those of her Pokemon. 

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Eliza is happy to explain as much as she can. She's had illusion powers since she was a kid, but all her other powers were gained when she was older. She can turn into a magical girl thanks to being brought to a place called Town A, though it turned out to be terrible and evil and she barely escaped with her life. Though the larger wings are thanks to making a wish to the god of the Meadous, as well as her various other forms. She calls up illusions of her nue, Primarina, and mouse transformations to better illustrate.

"Oh, and I can still turn into a magical girl when I'm transformed into the nue or mouse forms. Haven't tried with Primarina form yet-that's also a Pokemon, actually." She'll go on to explain the exact elemental abilities of all her Pokemon, as well as their unique skills, like Flute the Elephante's ability to sniff out invisible and ghostly figures.

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Wraith listens intently, asking clarifying questions often. (She also records the conversation for later study, not that it shows). Midway through, they arrive at the holding cell where Kismet can be unceremoniously dumped. 

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Eliza looks relieved once they get there, though she does look around at the overall security measures cautiously. "You'll know when she wakes up again, right?"

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Thick steel bars, double-layered with an inner cell and an antechamber. This cell has a physical lock rather than electronic. Cameras and various electrical hardware hooked up to the interior and exterior; currently useless thanks to the EMP. "Yes, provided I can restore power." 

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Eliza nods, looking relieved. "Um...anything I can do to help make that go faster? Or anything else I should check on just in case?"

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Can she or any of her Pokemon generate electricity, or perform repairs with magic? 

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None of them are telekinetic, though Lantern can go intangible and phase around to see if there's any broken stuff in the walls that might not be immediately noticeable. Slinky is also fairly strong, so if there's anything they just need strength for she can help there. (Flute's also strong, but she's not sure this building is up to Elephante-grade right now.)

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The phasing could be useful. Wraith explains where to check and what to look for, keeping the descriptions visually simple for Lantern's sake. "If I can find the damage, it's designed to be relatively easy to replace, but strength could help us if I need to change windings. Otherwise, I could use a lookout, and I want to learn more about your capabilities for proper deployment. Stick around?" 

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Lantern goes off on his journey as instructed, floating towards the places Wraith is pointing out.

Eliza grins slightly at that, saluting cheerfully. "No problem, ma'am!" Despite the broken wing, she's still quite cheerful as she heads to wherever she needs to be.

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Wraith, all business, coordinates repairs, doing a lot of the technical work herself. Within hours, she and Eliza get some backup power online. After rigging a makeshift radio from a few non-fried parts, Wraith reports that Bunker, Absolute Zero, Legacy, and a small group of allied heroes finally brought down Blade's fortress, guiding it to crash land in an evacuated city park. 

Legacy and Tachyon are in the hospital, both injured but recovering. With his chamber at Freedom Tower taken offline by the EMP, Absolute Zero is stuck in a small backup cryo-chamber, bored but only mildly injured. 

The allied heroes - a group called the Prime Wardens - have access to several kinds of healing between them. The most effective healers are treating the critically injured, but there's a wide-area slow heal effect available at the Eastside Presbyterian Hospital if Eliza wants to speed up her wing's recovery and begin healing the various smaller injuries her Pokemon have acquired. (They have a musician who can create magical effects, including healing, with his instruments). 

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That's a pretty neat way to do it! Eliza's (adoptive) uncle technically has magic music powers too, but they're more of the "magically summon accompaniment" type. She's definitely interested in what this healing music sounds like, and she's sure her injured Pokemon will appreciate it too. Of course, she also wants to pick up Witch first-hopefully she was able to help out in the battle and wasn't hurt too bad.

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Witch, it turns out, got along fabulously with Absolute Zero, after the initial skepticism of "are you sure you want me to blast you with fire...?" was overcome. He shielded her from most of the fighting. Eliza can find her near the cryo-pod, watching Bunker tune the device and repair his suit. (According to Bunker, she was a great help and confused the heck out of Blade's goon squad). 

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The healing music is produced by a handsome orange-haired man in a costume of brilliant silver, playing a pleasant melody on a set of panpipes. It's oddly echoing, and carries through the halls of the hospital farther than it really should. As soon as it reaches Eliza's ears, the pain from her wing begins to fade. 

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Eliza pets her Ninetales and gives her lots of compliments about how well she did. Witch preens under the attention, and when Eliza mentions going to a hospital to get healed up, seems a bit reluctant to leave, although the promise of magic healing wins her over in the end. She barks a goodbye in the direction of the cryo-pod before heading off with Eliza to the hospital.

When they get there, Eliza does end up going to take a closer look at the musician, though if he's alone in the room she won't go in in fear of disturbing him. Though if there's room to sit and listen, she'll definitely take it, her Pokemon all curled up or perched around her.

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He's not exactly alone, sitting in a hastily-erected overflow tent where the less critically injured are resting. The hospital has opened a number of doors and windows to let the music carry farther. He is preoccupied with the panpipes, but looks up as Eliza enters and raises an eyebrow. 

After a brief consultation, a harried nurse in charge of triage quickly sorts Eliza and her posse into the "non-critical" list, barely even blinking at the Pokemon. It's a bit cramped but there are some folding chairs within earshot. 

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Eliza waves a bit when he takes notice of her, before sitting down on one of the chairs, Witch curling up at her feet and Blade perching on the back while Lantern simply floats in the air behind her. She does know a bit about what panpipes are supposed to sound like, and as she listens to the music tries to figure out if he also has magical accompaniment-summoning powers on top of the healing music powers.

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Sort of? It's all panpipe music, but there is a lot more of it than could strictly be coming from one set of panpipes, both in volume and in different simultaneous sounds. And it's really good music

Eliza and company get some stares from passerby, but no one challenges them. 

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Eliza's used to people looking at her Pokemon oddly, at least. And sometimes her wings. So she just waves at anyone she sees looking their way before going back to listening to the music. It's a nice way to heal, she thinks, even if somewhat slower than the Pokemon centers she's used to. The music's nice enough she can just listen to it for a while as she waits for her wing to get better. She'll wait to see how long the performance lasts-does it seem like he needs to take a breath at any moment or does the whole song seem continuous? She's probably going to get fidgety about sitting still after ten minutes at most.

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He does appear to play the pipes and breathe normally, though he's as skilled as any expert musician at making this fact largely irrelevant to the quality of the music, and the magical accompaniment has no such limitations. 

After ten minutes Eliza's feeling perfectly healthy, with the sole exception that her wing still aches (it may or may not still be broken, but it is definitely less broken than it was). The ache is slowly receding at a rate that is discernible, barely. 

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Okay, she should probably wait for it to get fully better, but also she's getting a little antsy. If she stands up to pace around the outer edge of the waiting people, does anyone stop her and does the music keep working?

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