Episode One : The Adventure Begins!
Jutan - as the amnesia afflicted hero (otter)
Eno - as the helpful sidekick (penguin)
Kirk and Greg - as stereotypical thugs (rat and bat)
Random enraged creatures - (snails, lobsters, hermit crabs, beetles)
A vicious storm raged in the heavens, shooting out great gouts of lightning, brightening the grey clouds as they roiled with barely contained anger, shouting their displeasure at the universe with booming thunder. Beneath the storm, the waves heaved and crashed against each other in a frightening display of power, causing huge sprays of dark water to fly into the air. The ocean roared as well, matching the storm with its ferocity, screaming their challenges against each other.
"Are you okay?!?"
"No! Help me!"
"Wait! No, this can't be happening!"
All he could sense was darkness... Endless darkness... Why couldn't he remember anything? Thick dark clouds broiled in his mind, causing him to struggle, thrashing around in the senseless environment... Gradually, he could sense another presence, slowly filling his consciousness. He searched his brain, trying to deduce the correct way for him to move his muscles to open his mouth when a voice emanated from with the recesses of his mind.
•DO NOT FEAR, LITTLE ONE... YOU ARE SAFE WITHIN HERE... DO NOT STRUGGLE...•
He tried to answer, finally remembering the correct way to open his mouth, but no sound came out. He mouthed out his questions, desperate for an answer, but the voice took no heed of them. He felt something intrude upon his mind, filling him as easily as water would fill a cup.
•CALM YOURSELF... RELAX YOUR MIND... ANSWERS SHALL BE GIVEN IN GOOD TIME...•
Before he could answer, he felt a strange sensation, almost as if tentacles were gently stroking his insides. Before he could remark on this, he felt a pain wrack his body, twisting him into horrendous shapes as those strange tentacles probed his mind, sifting through wery inch of his being, laying bare his soul. Though what they saw, he could not tell, for the contents of himself were hidden from him, whether by the voice's choice, or his own unconscious decision.
Just as suddenly as they began, the sensations stopped, leaving his body limp and ragged, floating still in the strange dark realm that he was in. He could still feel the presence within himself, floating ethereally just beyond his consciousness. Still unsure of whether his eyes were open, he tried to see what damage was caused to him. The overwhelming darkness filled his vision, causing his heart to pound, throbbing with terror as he fought of a sense of profound helplessness. The voice filled his mind again, quieting his panic, calming his nerves and gentling his heart before leaving him, as if to consider what it had just learned.
A soothing deep green light began to emanate from all around him, filling his vision with the color of the secrets of a forest brought to light. He instinctively knew that this was his color, that the light was himself. Calmed by that knowledge, he relaxed as he waited for the voice to return. It wasn't long before he could sense it, filling his mind again, gentler this time, as if the intimacy of knowing his soul made the intrusion more acceptable.
•YOUR SOUL HAS PASSED MUSTER... PREPARE YOURSELF, AS WE HAVE CHOSEN YOU TO BE OUR CHAMPION...•
He tried to ask the voice what it meant, what any of this meant. Endless questions filled his mind, but the voice ignored them, probing at his mind once more, causing him to thrash against his invisible bonds, still unseen even in the deep green light. He slowly felt himself lose consciousness, the gentle light fading as he slowly faded back into oblivion...
He could see a cliff, rising high above him. A monstrous storm raged across the heavens, causing pouring rain to pelt him on his face. Lightning flashed across the sky, lighting up the cliff face, revealing it to be formed in the visage of a shark, teeth bared as is poised to strike. Struggling against insurmountable odds, he lost consciousness again...
He awoke again, lying on soft sand as the calm surf gently broke near him. He tried to sit up, but immediately lied back down, grimacing at the pain in his head.
"... ...I can't...Hurts too much..."
He collapsed and faded out of consciousness once again.
The morning was just beginning as the penguin nervously walked up the carved stone stairs to the cliff that housed the entrance to the Guild of Explorers. He began trembling with anticipation as the totem poles and flaming braziers entered his vision, or maybe it was simply fear. Carefully approaching the grate-covered hole in front of the tent that housed the entrance into the Guild, he braced himself and willed his flippers to step out onto the grate. His feet ignored his commands, choosing to stay rooted in front of the gate. He gazed upon the rabbit head-shaped tent and sighed with defeat.
The penguin groaned with frustration and began pacing in front of the barred entrance of the Guild. How would he ever become a real adventurer when he couldn't even walk into the Guild to begin his training? Steeling his resolve, he decided to overcome his crippling cowardice once and for all! Whimpering to himself, he walked onto the grate-covered hole in front of the entrance to Guild. Immediately, he heard a voice shout out.
"Footprints detected! Footprints detected!"
Another voice yelled out in reply.
"Whose footprints? Whose footprints?"
The first voice went silent, as if studying the shadow of the penguin framed against the grate.
"The footprints are of a penguin! The footprint are of a penguin!"
Immediately, the penguin cried out and jumped off the grate. That was too shocking for him to handle. Sweating with fear, he trembled as he considered his cowardice. He couldn't even gather the courage to walk in the front door! He berated himself for his weakness as he sat down. Pulling out a stone fragment, he gazed upon the intricate design inscribed upon it.
The stone fragment had a ragged base, broken and cracked along the entire object, except for one face, which was flat, as if smoothed by a craftsman's paws. On that face was the intricate design that the penguin was gazing upon. A circle with four plumes emanating from it was set within another circle. In between the plumes, a spiked design moved outward from the center, with another similar design continuing after the first ended.
The penguin spoke to himself, consoling his hurt feelings after the brutal defeat he suffered at the hands of his own cowardice. "I had hoped that having my most precious treasure with me would help me gain the courage to actually succeed in walking into the Guild, but I just couldn't do it... I'm such a coward... This is so discouraging..." With that, he took back the stone fragment and stowed it away. Sighing to himself once more, he turned around and disconsolately walked away from the tent, his shoulders slumped in sadness as he headed down the steps.
Back at the tent, a rat and a bat emerged from their hiding place behind one of the totem poles, and gazed at the retreating penguin.
The rat sniffed the air nervously, balancing on his paw pads, wobbling slightly with agitation as he turned to the bat. "Hey Greg, did you get a load of that penguin? All twitchy and everything."
The bat flapped his wings contemptuously, the firelight flickering off of his purple flesh as he bobbed in midair. "That I did, Kirk. That I did. I'm surprised he hasn't been committed yet."
Kirk turned and wrinkled his snout, facing the bat as he bounced slightly, eager to do something. "Greg, the little wimp that we were watching had something good, right?"
Greg chuckled menacingly to himself. "That cowardly penguin had something, thats for sure. It looked like it might be kinda valuable."
Kirk gazed at Greg with a dull gleam in his beady eyes. "Do we go after him for it?"
Greg glanced at his dimwitted partner and sighed to himself. If the rat wasn't so good at being the muscle, Greg would have gone and found someone else to work with. Good thing the rat's lust for cruelty matched his own. "Yes, we do go after it." He began chuckling to himself as they went after the penguin.
The sun slowly rose, stretching its bright reflection across the rippling waves as the clouds parted, framing the blazing ball of light in all its majestic beauty. The gentle waves slowly washed upon the flat shady beach, creating the picture of utter perfection. Tall red cliffs surrounded the cliff on three sides, creating a safe haven from even the nonexistent wind. Crabs began to fill the cliffs, each gazing upon the beautiful snapshot that Nature has provided for them. Trilling with happiness, they began to blow bubbles to celebrate the new day, slowly filling the air with the large iridescent balls, serenely floating through the air, helped along by the gentle breeze.
The penguin strode out onto the beach with the rising sun in front of him, hanging low over the calm blue sea. Gazing upon the idyllic scene set before him, from the multitude of gentle crabs blowing beautiful bubbles of iridescent colors to the purpling clouds framing the sun, his eyes glistened with tears brought on by the utter serenity of this blessed beach.
He sniffled and wiped his eyes with his wings, smiling happily despite his failed attempt to overcome his own crippling cowardice. He was glad that he left the barren ice-covered land that he was born in and had came to this tropical paradise.
"Wow... This is such a beautiful sight... It makes me happy to be alive..."
He sat down and gazed out across the surf, absentmindedly running his feathers through the sand at his flippers. He was glad he decided to come out to the beach, especially after a storm, when the crabs come out to enjoy the bright new day that always comes after a storm. Almost as if it was a sign that no matter how hard life could become, there will always be something wondrous to come after the hardship is over.
This has always been the place that the penguin would come to whenever he felt morose and melancholy. He knew that by simply spending some time on this marvelous paradise of a beach would instantly cheer him up and make him ready to face life again.
Smiling to himself, the penguin turned to walk down the beach and spotted something lying on the beach, right at the edge of the surf. Slowly padding towards the object, he tried to discern what it was. As he grew closer, he realized with a shock that it was a body!
Yelling out on fear, he quickly ran to the collapsed creature, noting the distinctly short snout and thick tail. It was a otter, a strange animal that was rarely seen around here. Grabbing him by the paws, the penguin dragged the otter out of the water and knelt by him, running his wingtips along his neck and arm to try to find a pulse. The penguin grabbed him by the shoulders and shook him, shouting at him with panic in his voice. "What happened?!? Are you okay?"
The animal stirred and coughed, his throat rasping from laying unconscious on the beach. He looked up at the penguin with a confused look on his face, slowly getting to his feet and wobbling woozily.
"You're awake!" Exclaimed the penguin. "That's a relief! I thought for a second that you had died!"
The otter ignored the penguin, gazing about himself with confusion. Where was he?
The penguin continued chattering, relief stamped clearly on it's face. "You weren't even moving when I found you! I was seriously worried that you were maybe dead! Do... Do you remember anything about how you came to be unconscious on this beach?"
The otter's eyes widened with shock as he heard this. He was unconscious? What had happened? Why couldn't he remember anything?
The penguin sighed happily, calmed down now that he knew that the otter was dead or dying. "Well, I'm Eno. Its very nice to meet you!" He smiled and gazed at the otter with curiosity. "What's your name, mister? I haven't seen you around these parts before."
The otter scanned his mind, trying to figure out where he came from. Something popped into his mind, and he stammered it out. "I don't know... All I can remember is that I'm human."
Eno stared blankly at Jutan. "A hyooman? But... You look like a totally normal otter to me! And what's a hyooman?"
The otter looked down at himself and exclaimed loudly, grabbing at his own chest with his paws. "Oh my god, you're right! I've turned into an otter! But... How did this happen?" A vague memory of an omnipotent voice surfaced in his mind, but vanished into smoke as he tried to grasp at it, eager to remember anything. "I... I can't remember anything..."
Eno tilted his head and regarded the otter with suspicion. "You're... Kinda odd... Are you pulling a prank on me? Cause if you are, it's not funny!" He folded his wings in a huff and glared at the otter, his feathers ruffling with frustration.
The otter waved his arms placatingly, trying to calm the penguin down. "No, I swear I'm telling you the truth!"
Eno uncrossed his wings and the anger vanished from his face, replaced by a look of concern. "Alright, I believe you. What's your name, hyooman-turned-animal?"
The otter screwed his eyes shut, concentrating on trying to remember his name. A gentle breeze ruffled his fur, followed by a name whispered throughout his mind.
He opened his eyes and rolled the two syllables around, feeling how they fit him. They felt right, and he smiled and answered with confidence. "My name is Jutan. I'm sure of it."
Eno nodded and smiled back. "Your name is Jutan? Hmm... The name suits you. Well, you don't seem to be a insane or evil, for now, so I guess everything is okay. Sorry for calling you a liar, but more and more creatures have been going bad around here, beating up and robbing other animals. Our island has become somewhat lawless as most animals have become aggressive and violent..."
Jutan barked in surprise and jumped back as a rat and bat rushed up to Eno, knocking him over. They grabbed at Eno's bag and pulled, ripping it open. Eno's stone fragment fell out of his bag, landing onto sand with a soft thud.
Eno shouted with pain as he collapsed onto the sand, shutting his eyes with pain from being tackled.
The rat chuckled to himself and grinned, his craggy yellow teeth turning his smile into a grimace. "Well, excuuuuuse me!" His beady little eyes glinted cruelly as he swished his thick hairless tail through the sand, pleased with himself.
Eno got up and turned to the pair, anger pouring from every feather as he began shouting at them. "Hey! Why would you do that?!? There's a whole open beach for you to walk on!"
The bat giggled maniacally, his pointy fangs glistening as his mouth salivated with excitement. "Hehehe! What, scaredy little chicken can't figure it out? We wanted to mess with you, cause you're such a whiny brat! Can't handle us, can you?!?"
Eno looked at the pair with shock. "Wh-what?!? Why?"
The rat chimed in, laughing with the bat. "Cause you're a chicken, got it!" He was still chuckling when the bat smacked him with his broad wings, buffeting him to the ground.
"Shut up, Kirk! Remember, I do the talking! You just shut up and look menacing!" The bat glared at Kirk, flapping his wings quickly from irritation.
"Got it, Greg. No talking, just menacing." Kirk looked away from the bat's sightless glare and grimaced at Eno and Jutan, his thick tongue flickering from in between his molding teeth.
Greg grinned, a truly menacing sight, with his long pointed bat fangs being constantly licked in anticipation. He gestured at the stone fragment with his tail point. "That's yours, isn't it?"
Eno exclaimed and frantically searched his bag, looking up at the stone fragment near the evil pair with despair once he found it empty.
Greg grabbed it and tossed it to Kirk, who stuffed it into a bag. "Looks like its ours now, chicken!"
Eno could only watch as the pair laughed amongst themselves for their daringly evil deed.
Kirk sneered at Eno, snorting derisively at the cowering boy. "What, not even gonna make a move to take it back? What's the matter, too scared?" He laughed and grimaced at the trembling penguin. "I didn't expect you to be this big of a coward, you chicken!" He turned to Greg and nudged him. "Come on Greg, we got the stone. Let's get out of here."
Greg sneered at Eno, spitting at his flippers. "See you around, chicken." Still laughing, the both of them ran off to the cave at the end of the beach.
Eno collapsed onto the sand and sobbed into his wings. His voice trembled with sadness as he looked up at Jutan. "...Ohhh.... Wh-what should I do now...? That was my personal treasure, it meant everything to me! If I lose it, I have nothing..." Suddenly, the penguin gathered himself and rose with anger stamped on his face. "No! There is no time to waste! I'm going to get it back!" Turning to the nervous otter who was awkwardly shifting his feet, as of unsure of what to do, Eno cautiously asked. "Jutan, could you help me go get my treasure back?"
Jutan scratched his head as he thought about it. He just met the guy, but Eno had saved him from dying. Or at least he thinks Eno had saved him from dying. He looked at the penguin, who was staring at him with large glistening eyes, hoping for the best. How could he resist? Smiling, he nodded. "I would gladly help you get your treasure back. Its the least I can do."
Eno's eyes widened even more and happy tears rolled down his feathery cheeks, beading down his chin. "You really will?!? Th-thank you! Let's go quickly!"
Jutan smiled and followed Eno down the beach to the dark entrance of the cave. Eno stopped him before he could enter it, however.
"Jutan, I should warn you. The animals who live in these places are dangerous and wild. They will try to kill you. You need to fight if you want to survive. Don't hold back." Eno looked at Jutan to make sure he understood. Jutan nodded resolutely, determined to do his best.
"Just... Just be careful. They won't think twice about hurting you, so do the same."
Jutan grinned and nodded to Eno with confidence, feeling the exact opposite as his insides twisted themselves together. "Well, what are we waiting for? They're getting away! Let's go get your treasure back!"
Eno smiled and nodded, strangely eager to follow the rat and the bat into the cave, despite his crippling cowardice.. "Alright, let's go!"
Jutan and Eno walked into the darkness of the cave mouth, each trusting the other to protect them as they began their first adventure together.
They were standing in a cold, clammy cavern, the light of day far behind them, hidden by the oppressive stone walls of the maze-like cavern. Jutan gazed around, familiarizing himself with where he was. He turned to ask Eno what was happening when he saw a hermit crab rushing at them. Jutan was about to attack it when Eno pounded it, crushing it's shell in. The hermit crab's tongue flopped wildly in its death throes before laying still upon the cold, rocky floor.
Jutan swallowed nervously, eyeing the diminutive penguin with his wingtip covered in bits of shell and intestines. Who knew such a small animal could hit so hard? "I guess you were serious about not hesitating or holding back."
Eno carefully wiped off the gooey bits of the dead hermit crab from his wing and turned to face the otter, his beak set with determination. "We have to be ruthless, or these animals will do worse than just kill us. And they only get more ruthless the further we go into the cave. Come on, we need to keep moving."
Eno failed to notice the dark-blue beetle sneaking up at him, and would have been taken down by the sneaky animal if Jutan hadn't jumped in front of him, slamming into the creature. The otter lowered himself into a fighting stance and prepared to go on the attack. The beetle never stood a chance.
Jutan ripped some moss off of the cavern wall and wiped his paws clean of the bloody mess he created, the carnage having stained all the nearby moss on the floor with bits of the beetle's carapace. Throwing the used moss aside, he was surprised by Eno tackling him and hugging him tightly.
"Y-you saved my life! Thank you!" Eno smiled at the otter and hugged him again, nuzzling tightly against his chest.
Jutan blushed, turning his reddish-brown fur into a darker shade. "It was nothing... Besides, you saved my life earlier. I guess this makes us even now." He grinned as Eno released him and nodded his agreement.
"That makes sense, Jutan. Well, where do we go next?" He gestured to the two exits out of the cavern, both pathways only visible for a few feet before the dim light of the luminescent moss and crystals lost their ability to light the gloom.
Jutan shrugged and pointed to the northern exit. "Let's go that way!" They gathered some moss for a lantern and headed on their way, following the dastardly pair that had stolen Eno's most precious treasure.
They followed the dark tunnels, water dripping and echoing along with the pads of their feet. Holding the torch they fashioned out of luminescent moss in front of them allowed them to see enough of the tunnels that they wouldn't get lost. Wandering through the tunnels blindly, they reached several dead ends, forcing them to have to double back. Along the way, they encountered more vicious creatures intent on disemboweling intruders. Each time, the pair took pains to hide from them, unwilling to face their certain defeat.
Eventually, they came out into a cavern that had a strange dark pit. Eno rushed over to it and examined it. "This is where we need to go! The hole will take you deeper into the cave. Come on Jutan, let's go." Eno smiled and jumped into the hole, his fluttering wings vanishing into the darkness. Jutan eyed the pit nervously before jumping in after him.
They tumbled down a steep chute for what seemed to be an eternity, before finally popping out of the cavern wall and appearing in a large sandy pit surrounded by calm water that gently lapped at the edges of the sandy bank. Gazing around, the pair were shocked to find such an idyllic place as the deepest part of the dungeon. They assumed that it would be more horrendous, so as to match the dark halls of hell that they just went through. Pleasantly surprised, they followed the path deeper into the pit, searching for the rat and the bat that had stolen Eno's precious stone fragment.
At the very end, Jutan and Eno found them, chortling amongst themselves for being successful at mugging an animal weaker than themselves.
Eno chittered nervously and strode up to the pair. He stuttered as he tried to confront them. "Hey, g-give me b-back my stone!"
The rat turned and looked at the penguin with contempt. "Well well, it looks like our friend the chicken has returned."
Eno paled and subconsciously took a step back with fear. Realizing what he was doing, he steeled his nerves and faced the rat again. "Give me... Give me back what you stole! It's my personal treasure! It means everything to me!"
The bat perked his ears with interest and swiveled them towards Eno. "Treasure, you say? So this hunk of rock really is valuable? Hear that, Kirk?"
Kirk scrunched up his eyes in concentration and thought about what this meant. "That means that it could be worth more than we thought it would, right?" Kirk's face brightened, turning his face into a grimace as he smiled. "We should try selling it! We might get a good price for this rock." He sneered at the cowering penguin and laughed. "All the more reason not to give it back, you little coward."
Eno physically leapt back from them, flapping his wings with agitation. "WHAAT?!?!? No, you will give it back!"
Greg laughed and flapped his wings quickly with excitement, his lust for cruelty egging him on. "If you want it that badly, come and get it from us, ya big coward!" He turned to leave when the penguin attacked from rage.
Greg tried to intervene, rushing to the bat's aid, but Jutan dove for his kneecaps, driving him onto the sandy floor of the cavern. The rat kicked out at the otter's head, causing him to release his legs. He stood and started circling the otter, his beady eyes searching for weaknesses.
Slamming into the bat, Eno pounded him between his shoulder blades, making his wings tense up. He fell to the ground, scrabbling in the sand to quickly flip himself over and push the light penguin off of him. He snarled and bashed Eno over the head with his hard wings with his hard wings. Eno cried out and collapsed, his vision blurry.
Jutan yelled out in anger and rushed the sneering Pokemon, scratching at him with his claws. The membrane on his wing split open, staining the sand with dark purple blood. Screeching, he dragged himself away from the growling otter.
Helping Eno up, they both turned to the rat, who was gazing at them with confusion, uncertain of what just happened. His dull mind tried to piece together the events. First, he was about to fight the otter, and then the otter ran away. Or did he scare the otter away? And why was his friend bleeding?
As the rat stood there, his eyes glazed over as he stared off into space, Jutan and Eno flanked him, trapping him against the cavern wall. Greg snapped out of his reverie and looked at the pair in front of him, their hate-filled gazes boring into him. The rat was struck with a cold sweat as he realized that their theft didn't go as planned. He took out the stone and held it aloft. "Stop, or I'll break it!"
Jutan and Eno glared at him. Greg knew they were about to call his bluff, so he threw the fragment over them, into the deep lake lapping at the sandy floor. They dove into the water after it, ignoring the rat in favor of the stone. In the confusion, Greg helped Kirk to his feet and they made their escape.
Fishing the stone out of the lake, Jutan and Eno clambered out onto the sandy bank, gasping with exertion. Eno clutched the stone to his chest, unwilling to let it go so soon after reclaiming it.
Jutan clambered to his feet and gazed around the room, searching for the rat and the bat that had caused them such grief. "They got away... Damn it!" The otter kicked at the sandy floor, berating himself for letting them escape.
Eno placed a wing on Jutan's shoulder, calming him. "It's okay, we got my treasure back." He smiled up at the otter, still clutching the stone fragment to his chest.
They sat out on the beach, gazing out onto the pristine ocean as the sun warmed them, a gentle wind playing over the waves, causing small waves to break upon the shore.
The penguin sighed happily and took out the stone fragment, examining it with pride. He turned and beamed at the otter, happiness etched in every ruffling feather. "I can't thank you enough for what you did. Without you, I would have never have been able to face those mean creatures."
The otter waved off the penguin's gratitude, doubtful as to whether he actually deserves such praise. After all, he only helped because of the fact that the penguin saved his life. Did paying off a debt make him a hero? "Eno, what are you going to do, now that you have your treasure back?"
Eno smiled and placed the stone back into his pouch. "Well, I was hoping that you might consider coming with me and joining the Guild of Explorers. Maybe they have some answers for you, and if you're with me, I might finally have to courage to get past the door this time."
The otter considered this. His memory wasn't any better since he woke up; still hazy and cloudy, as if tainted by an oily smear, obfuscating everything in his mind relating to the past. Maybe this Guild could help him remember the past, and he didn't have anything better to do. Besides, he was starting to like this penguin. He smiled and twitched his whiskers. This could be fun.
"So where is this Guild?"