Leo's Journal

Log date: 5 days since the colony incident, 200SE

Taking a break from taking in that massive dossier that arrived in our room. Decided a private file to collect my thoughts might be prudent. This Damascus family is quite intimidating, but I highly doubt we'll be privy to them this soon in the game. Still, it's useful to think about the makeup of this family for future considerations.

Essentially, the Damascus family appears to be a Patriarchy, although I would not rule out members of either gender to rise to head of the household. However, it seems like a good bet that the next in power might match genders with the incumbent, so keep that in mind.
This places Gunther Damascus squarely at the top of the family.

However, I believe that Etna Damascus, the so called "Lady E" also holds a very important place. She is probably in an advisor position. Considering she has lived to a hundred in a politically public family, she must be good at bending events around her. Clairvoyance helps with this of course. Being clever helps too. I wouldn't be surprised if most of the dead or missing Lords and Ladies below ended up being her doing and not the war's.

Now, as for the next tier down, children, and they must all be considered children no matter the age. Considering the advanced ages of Gunther and Etna, it isn't very hard to see that a new leader will probably be chosen soon. An heir. Probably male, probably beloved by the colonists, probably related by blood (Though not necessarily) and above all useful in securing power within the family.

Of the members outlined below (I made a little note of each of them on the following page) I believe these lords have the best chance of being the heir:

Reymond
Lord D
Lady O
Lady F
Possibly Lady N

Reymond is obvious; He has already shed his mask to count himself among the "Shirtless ones" of the colonies, makes charismatic speeches, and in general seems to run the show on the front. A very good thing for an heir to do. The outer colonists most likely love and trust him. He is a no-brainer for next patriarch.
Lord D is a lot less obvious. Any hint of decadence could be poisonous to the well-being of the family. His attractiveness and his dubious relation to the family might work against him, but I have a feeling that, if given enough nudging, Lord D could be pursuaded that he deserves to take over the family instead of Lord R and spark enough infighting and inter-faction friction that the TRE could possibly be weakened. D might be the one to focus on.
Of the ladies, N (assuming she is eligible) is probably the most visible and known of the ladies. A recruiter, so she is out on the streets, so to speak, and feared by the enemy. However, I would not trust her to want to take power away from Raymond.
O and F are different matters, they are both young women of marrying age. If their place in the family is as direct as I theorize (Daughters and wives and all that) then they are both valuable commodities among members of other colonial families. If any husband of theirs ever came to power, it would be them pulling the strings behind the throne like Etna does now. Because of this these two ladies do not seem compatible with each other if they both try to chase the ascension. This is why it might be a good idea for us if both of them try and, once again, tear the TRE into infighting factions.

As for all the other reindeer, there isn't too much to say. They're bound to be dangerous, sure, but for one reason or another they're probably not fit for ruling at the top. If they were to try, Etna would probably make sure they were killed and replaced.

Lady S
Lady N
Macbeth

The first is apparently unstable, and would not make for a good ruler. The second is possibly not connected by family, and the third is too ugly to appeal to a broad audience. Still dangerous, of course, but useless to the family as a whole. However, it might be a worthwhile strategy to try to get these lords and ladies to turn inward and try to chase the ascension. Worst case scenario, they are instantly assassinated and we are down one less lord to worry about. Best case scenario, they succeed and the TRE is led by someone unfit to rule (Except in the case of Lady N, who might make for a sharp ruler) and is made weaker overall.

I havent the slightest idea where to start if I actually wanted to influence how the ascension unfolds, but I have a feeling it might be an important peice of this war. If Etna's plan (For I believe it's Etna's will) that Reymond takes the head position comes true, then TRE will be exactly where it wants to be, and that is not at all what we want if we want to win this war. If we can make them fight themselves as much as they fight us, we might have a shot.

Personal news; Health good. Body fat normal. I should take more excercise. All this time spent in Zero G isn't good for me. Jenny; Green, healthy. The artifical sun on the ranch deck should help keep her leaves and buds healthy. Zero, also green, and healthy, but not sure what to make of his anatomy. He seems to feel it when I touch his outer shell, although I cannot hear much through a stethoscope. Considering the anatomy must be be similar to that of a single-celled creature scaled up I'm not too worried about keeping him healthy. He seems fragile for now, but some time in the gyms and in real battle might give him the bulk he needs for being a medical pokemon.

Cafeteria food is awful. I simply must see to getting better food made.


Gunther Damascus - Patriarch. Political leader. Not much else to say except that this man appears to be the head of the house who makes all of the decisions. Or at least the public ones.

Etna Damascus (Lady E) - Patriarch's cousin. Old. Probably Clever. Probably on Gunther's good side. Clairvoyancy seems handy for keeping th family in information. Probably also useful for controlling the flow of information.

Reymond Damascus (Lord R) - The favored Son. Unmasked himself to show he is one of the Shirtless ones.

Lord D - Young. Mid 20s. A Healer, so perhaps he feels people need him. Don't like the look of that face. On the other hand, maybe I do. Possibly investigate any aspiratiions of climbing the political ladder.

Lady S - "Someway biologically linked" and "Delusional" seem to raise flags for me. She must be useful to the family, or else they would never keep her around, but if she is some distant second neice or third cousin she must not have much possible stake in the family beyond how much the family gives her. No doubt a dangerous opponent in a fight, but probably useless politically.

Lady N - An oddity to be sure. Most families don't have recruitment drives. Going by occam's razor, Lady N is probably not the same woman, but a different woman each time with similar powers. Emotional powers might be cultivated in recruited minor family members or even ones born into the family. If the current N is killed, the next one steps up. An interesting mini-ascension, which also makes her unpredictable but also (If this family puts any truck by blood relation) makes her useless to family plots as anything but someone recieving orders.
Another theory, which might cause her to be more relevent, might be that the original Lady N found a way to posess people and lived on after death through them. It's a ridiculous idea, but it is an alternate angle on the situation, and would make her a candidate for ascension once Gunther dies.

Macbeth (Lord M) - Interesting case. Apparently not related by Blood to the Damascus family. Instead probably one of the Newtype recruitments. This, plus his ugly scarring, most likely makes him a relatively low man on the totem pole. People might like him in person at TREE rallies and all that, but I doubt with his scars in our visual age he could get the kind of backing to be a major leader of governent.

Lady O (And the Lords before her) - Lady O is apparently the third in a line of Os, both old men. Now, why replace an older man connected to the family with a strange girl with similar powers? If she was connected to one of those two men, either she's a daughter or perhaps a young wife, it might make sense. Incidentally this also makes her a candidate for ascension depending on how close to the source (Gunther and Etna) she is.

Lady F - This lady raises red flags. She's young, beautiful, and of questionably connection to the family. That third point may seem like a point against her, but one must remember that marrying into a family is just as potent, if nor moreso, than being recruited for one. Her youth might indicate that she is a daughter as well, like Lady O might be, which makes her a candidate for ascension. She is probably very popular, and thus dangerous.

—-

When you walk into the room on the ship Leo stays in, you see this hung on his wall:

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—-

Short postscript: I forgot to mention it in my rambling above. New squadmate once we get to the next port. Apparently with more military experience, thank goodness, but also probably more aligned behind the military's interests, rather than ours (Which are similar yet distinct). It may pay to keep an eye on him for a while before trusting him completely, but don't tear the group apart doing it.


Log Date: 1 week since colony incident, 200SE

Must make today's entry quick. I am between the beginning of a mission and a rather enlightening meeting involving the Captain, Admiral, and two new players; Professor Uvak Turtle and Ensign Thompson Roe.

The former is a rather odd man. He seemed excessively interested in any Newty Awakened Colonist abilities we might have had. He seemed to look us all over with an instrument (A strange helmet with a large lens on it) and hummed and hawed about what our potentials are. Sam and I weren't very powerful, obviously. Honestly, I don't hold out too much hope in gaining any strange powers myself. I'm perfectly fine with staying as normal as possible. Jenny on the other hand, I think Jenny might start to exhibit some extra normal powers of her own. Be sure to nurture that whenever it comes.

The latter, Thompson Roe. He is the man joining our squad. He seems amiable enough, which might mean he is all the more dangerous. The Professor noted that his AC abilities account for a heightened ability of persuasion. I don't trust the military 100% even as I am at their beck and call, so naturally, the addition on the team of someone who appears loyal to the military, and has unnatural powers of persuasion seems risky. Be sure to object as soon as anything untoward occurs, but don't be too hard. If he is genuinely amiable, it's best for the group to be as inclusive as possible. And, also, his powers might come in handy on missions.

Personal News; These past few days have seen leaps and bounds in Zero's improvement. I've given him some basic zero g training, as well as a large amount of personal time in the gym over the past few days. Despite an unfortunate loss to Bulk's Makuhita(Due in no small part to my own inexperience), I think we're well on our way to being a well-trained force. And besides that he's quite affectionate. I feel bad working him and Jenny so hard, but I try to relax with them afterward.

Frivolous News; Two theories; I think the captain is either having an affair with Suzan of the Ranch deck, and that red mark on his face was lipstick, OR the two of them are rivals who often fight and the red mark was blood, or a welt. Perhaps some twisted combination of both. He'll undoubtedly know it was I who gave the admiral that note. I tried to be tactful, but I do hope any fallout from that is on my head and not the team's. Still. I do think he should clean himself up a little better if it is indeed a secret, so I don't think I'm in the wrong.

Food in the cafeteria has improved slightly since I've started helping. Do you know how long it's been since they cleaned some of those surfaces? No wonder the food tasted foul if it was cooked in a foul environment. Also, I get the feeling most of the cooks there don't really know how to cook. Well, by the time I'm through they had better know.

POST SCRIPT: (Written between the tests and going out for the mission)
Should note: We're searching for information about Lady F. Pyromania indicates to me that she might be hiding somewhere within the gym, if she is indeed hiding at all. If she is found, and there must be a confrontation, avoid confrontations in public. Colonists who know of the Damascus family will be sure to rally to her side, since she's so beautiful.

—-

Log Date: July 31st, 200SE, Saturday

And of course I awake in the hospital. Thankfully the mission was a complete success as far as I can tell.

But I get ahead of myself. Start at the beginning. Fought in the gym, tournament style. First mission with Ensign Thompson Roe, by the way. He is a fine fighter, with a few tricks up his sleeve, but I say with no small amount of pride that Teresa defeated him in a very nice battle. Don't know if I could have taken away the same sort of victory.

Zero and Jenny both performed to their fullest, even if I knew we weren't going to win. I told them before as I fed them their energy supplements for the fight. The first few rounds where we weren't fighting the others I told them not to hold back. But as soon as we start fighting someone we know, to be ready to take a fall if it was in the best interest of the group. I hope they understood what I meant. Luckily it didn't come to that. When I fought Kazuma, he beat me fair and square.

However, there was a slight hiccough in the plan when Sam, and not Teresa emerged at the finals. Teresa or Kazuma had been my favorites for facing down the gym leader, but Sam ended up in the finals, dealing Kazuma a decisive defeat. It was even more infuriating when she decided to fight the gym leader's strongest pokemon, but - She's tenacious, that counts for something I have to remember - she gave that Arcanine such a fight that she earned a badge anyway, just for trying. I should have known how strong Sam's pokemon are, having fought alongside that Spoink of hers multiple times, both times having the future sight attack be central to victory.

Long story short, Sam is in for the leader's party and surprised me once again by choosing Kazuma as her 'plus-one.' I suspect it has something to do with my sending Kazuma to talk to the gym leader. I think that was a good idea, even if not for my intended reason.

We got some new AC hints with Kazuma and Teresa. By hints I mean huge roadsigns printed twelve meters tall. Teresa, I have discovered, can read and transmit thoughts, just like Dr. Turtle said. Kazuma rushed off before I could gauge his new toys fully, but I suspect it might be similar. He has the ability to "Ice Punch" without a poikemon. Impressive. I was worried. From how he was nursing his hands as we were fitting for tuxedos It must have been something physical. He came back soon after and seemed fine, so I put it out of my mind until he was suddenly slinging around a fist full of ice.

The party itself. Very enlightening. At first I wasn't sure how we were going to get to Ariel and get the information out, but it seems that sometimes you just get lucky. During a waltz where we were changing partners (Thankfully away from a rather unfortunate blabbermouth I had paired with initially) I happened to get Ariel as a partner and, through conversation and tactical use of Teresa's new ability, we found out that she was waiting for someone. I wanted to send someone in after her once she left, but, once again, Sam surprised me by sneaking off and getting the phone number where Lady F was staying. I think we made some headway into procuring Ariel's help against TRE, since Lady F appears to be a friend of hers. She wants her friend safe. Admirable. However, if Lady F is a nuisance, we will have to take her down.

Soon after we went down to investigate the underground. Secret passage in a hedge maze lead to the docks, where we quite amateurishly, I'm sure, alerted the guards to our presence. We fought them off however, but discovered that there was some kind of Jamming signal. The only message that got through from HQ was from one of the twins. "Keep going." So, against all odds - and once again, due to the impulses of Sam - we were able to infiltrate and take down Lady F, or, Freya Reymond AKA Freya Damascus. This confirms that one need not be of Damascus blood to join the family, although I'm sure it helps. Side note: Reymond… Connection to Lord R, AKA Reymond Damascus? Most likely a coincidence but still worth checking out.

Unfortunately I sustained injury. I'll be back on my feet soon enough.

I must say, in personal recollection, I do not blame Ariel for attempting to shield Lady F Miss Reymond. I'm sure I would have done the same in her situation. I hope such a situation never occurs.

Remember: If no other course of action seems reasonable, Sam's impulses appear to be quite effective, even if they seem foolhardy at first. She may not be able to wield ice or read minds, but she's just as invaluable to the team as either Kazuma or Teresa.

On Ensign Roe; I think he appears trustworthy. He has more than proven his own capability as an ally in a fight or when used to scout for information. However, one thing remains unclear in my mind. If forced to choose between us and the military, who would he choose? That question is probably the greatest obstacle which must be overcome for me before I can really consider him completely a part of our circle.

Personal News; Zero seems larger and more capable. His already fascinating physiology has changed slightly, and he appears to be getting even more affectionate. He has developed a twin pair of arm-like nubs which he attempts to use to hug me as I lay in the hospital, although he can barely even reach. Perhaps it's an inherited trait. Is this evolution? Jenny as well appears to have taken a personal interest in my health and struggles and cries when the doctors want her returned to her ball. I have explained to them her status as a medical asset, and have placated the medics for now. I awoke to the strong scent of nutmeg and coriander and felt my strength return and my mouth water. As soon as I return to the kitchens I simply must see if I can use some of Jenny's leaves to give the usual rations a kick. Perhaps I shall dry some in my off-time for personal use.

My first meal when I awoke was, unfortunately, Doctor-recommended tube space food, completely undisguised. Was tempted to ask Jenny if I might snip a bit off of a bud and give it a taste, but I resisted the urge. I wouldn't want to interfere with her growth in an uncontrolled environment just for my gratification. However, this has inspired me to continue whipping that kitchen into shape.

One last note, RE: Kazuma. Specifically, Kazuma's Mother. It appears that TRE has her, and this Eva woman was taunting Kazuma about it. Now, while Kazuma is probably my best friend, I can't help but think about the possible connections here. His father wrote a paper in college about the AC phenomenon. His Mother disappears years later, and the next we hear of her is in connection to the TRE, possibly as their captive. Then again, what if she isn't a captive? It is a bit of a stretch, but it's possible that she was scouted by the TRE as an AC herself, and that currently she is working for them, although the hole in that possibility comes when you consider we have access to that huge Dossier, and no one matching Kazuma's description of his mother appears. If we must subscribe to this unfortunate theory, then this means that the only place in TRE is as a corpse, a captive, or as one of the esteemed Lords and Ladies.

If Kazuma's mother was an AC, this might also explain his father's paper, and how he was able to predict so exactly the rise of Awakened Colonists, and her connection to the writer of that paper might be another reason she may have been taken. If Dr. Turtle is a fan, then certainly Dr. Matthew Harris has read or at least heard of the same paper. This whole drama may be central to unraveling the entire picture of the Damascus family, and of this war, as much as I hate to have Kazuma's family implicated or brought into danger.

—-

The chart on Leo's wall has been updated (As soon as he's back on his feet.)

jg5v2w.jpg

—-

Log Date: August 3rd, 200SE

No big missions for the past few days, although we are set to get the results of the last mission in 2 days from today. Essentially, at the end of the last mission there was a lot of discontent among the others about how the military handled the situation. We played our part, and well, but it appears that if we hadn't, there was no safety net there to ensure our safety. It was live or die and nobody quite got around to telling us. That was the test and we appear to have passed. Naturally, when we spoke with the Captain and Admiral emotions ran high and things were said that I hope nobody regrets. Me? I regret nothing of the sort.

For our part, I think Thompson brought Miss Reymond around despite everything. Even enhanced by apparent AC powers he is quite able in his talent of persuasion. What's more, getting to know him, I do rather like him. It occurs to me only as I write this that the reason I like him may be that his AC powers are in full swing, but that smacks of paranoia. A little paranoia might be useful. Even so, keep up overtures with Tom(strikeout) the Ensign, if only for the conversation. Apparently he has a rival with what is most certainly a Beedrill by this point. Perhaps not the most useful trivia, but I think he is going to try to track this person down. it may be nice to see something end happily for once. Remember as a Caveat that he is as ambitious as I thought he might be. His goal is to become Fleet Admiral. It is a good goal of course befitting a military man, but I must be careful lest that ambition threatens to get in the way of the good of the group as a whole.

Afterward, everyone's status was rather downtrodden. Sam came to see me and confided her unease. I tried to tell her exactly what I wrote about her part in this here. Her guts and heart are just as important as Kazuma's fool courage and aura and Tessa's telepathy and stubbornness. On the subject, Sparrow seems to have accepted Sam and Theresa as her parents. I hope this is a sign of progress, moving on from her loss.

Speaking of aura and telepathy, I went to see Dr. Turtle. The overt reason was to get myself checked out, and perhaps to see if there was anything interesting about Jenny and I that could be found, or if it was possible to learn how to detect AC potential in people. The ulterior motive was a little less noble. I must admit that I intended to menace him a bit to find out if there's anything I should know about the health concerns surrounding Kazuma and Tessa's new powers, especially after seeing Freya's condition. He said nothing much, but I have made it abundantly clear that their health is my primary concern.

As for the next few days, I must admit I'm a bit troubled. I don't want to go back to my home in the ruined colony to dredge up the past, but then I learn that a pokemon of Brian's may be in trouble. A Magnemite. It might be able to have survived the week or so we've been gone, and Steel types are notorious for being tough, but still, very few things are built for space. I don't want anything else from the colony hurt, but I also want to bury the past and not look back until we've finished things with TRE. I agreed to help Brian search. I hope we find it quickly so I can get back onto the ship.

Personal news; As a Doublran, Zero has become quite a force. He's still slow, and can't move altogether too far, and his attack potential is quite limited, but when he hits, he can hit fairly hard and thanks to our training he's able to take hits in turn. Defeated the twins by teaming up with Ensign Roe. It was interesting to be mopping up while someone else played support. Altogether a good experience for Zero all around these past few days, even with the scare of almost losing one's trainer.

Kazuma surprised me, however, by handing over the Mamepato he had caught on the colony. I have little idea what to do with it, but I took it, if only to have a wider array of pokemon. Girafarigs are 60,000 credits. If I'm going to save up for one I had better start now. Payday cannot come any faster. I've been working in Etna's shop and selling vitamins through it to earn some extra cash, but 1100 a day is hardly going to cut the mustard.

Another note: look up Slugma physiology. Invest in some heatproof supplies.

Health; Body mass is nominal. Blood pressure good, if slightly high. No loss of sleep. Wound appears to be healing well. A little weak from surgery still. I think I started excercising more just in time. No damage done by Zero gravity yet, and I think I should be able to stave off weakness by taking frequent excercise.

By the way, snuck a few of Jenny's faster growing herbs into the cafeteria when I worked in there. Added it to some of the rations when nobody was looking. I spiked 7 meals, and I believe that among the lucky taste-testers were Bulk, Kerri, and, distressingly, the Captain. I couldn't notice any change in how they reacted to the food, but in my opinion it made it a bit more palatable. Let's hope I can figure out if improving the quality of food on the vessel is feasible.

—-

Log date: August 4th, 200

The Magnemite rescue went fairly well. Brian in angry with me that I wouldn't let him stay in his room alone for even a moment while the clock was ticking for the poor Magnemite inside. I understand the anger, and I'm not particularly cowed by it. He needs to be angry at someone so it might as well be me. A life was saved, and that's all that matters.

Kazuma found an oddity in his room. Someone had planted a pokeball for him to find (Or so he says. I trust him to do the right thing, but I don't always trust him to give me every detail of an event I was not myself present to witness. Remember the secrets he kept about his mother.). A very rare shiny Duskull. His team is filled out, making him and Tessa our two strongest members, both pokemon wise and in terms of AC powers. However, that pokeball does not sit well with me. Shiny pokemon do not just materialize in pokeballs, and pokemon in their balls, shiny or no, do not just appear underneath pillowcases. Also, it was unregistered, meaning possibly illegally obtained. I remain suspicious, it's possible Kazuma may not be telling all there is about what happened in his room.

Nothing else today.

—-

Log date: August 6th 200

Not much to say today. My contract with Etna is going smoothly, and I am making enough extra money on the side to pull a good profit. In mission critical news, Freya Reymond has apparntly been sent to an as-of-yet unnamed lab station. With what we know (Or don't know) about Kazuma's father, it's possible they may be on the same station. Nothing else mission critical.

Personal news; Had a battle with the Captain today. My team work with Kazuma was quite abysmal, however, Jenny gave a good showing. Her training is coming along nicely. Only the heaviest of blows can really put a scratch on her hide, although when the blows do fall, especially from ice or fire, they still hurt. If his pokemon were a more equal level to mine (As I suspect his are quite strong, considering his rank and how much damage they did end up doing) I might have been able to pull away a victory by stalling him out with leech seed and walls. Next time, focus on your team's defense, as Jenny's is quite alright on her own. It was worth it to finally get a chance to see how strong the Captain really is.

As for the kitchens, I've tried again. This time I got a definite reaction from a few people. Whether it's good or bad I don't know quite yet.

—-

Log date: August 8th 200

I write today as a followup to what I learned on the 6th. The lab with Freya aboard was attacked, and we are to mobilize to defeat the enemy and rescue her. Apparently, the lab has been under attack or captured for the past three days and nobody has been able to turn off the distress beacon. This seems to suggest to me that the enemy is still aboard, but there are still a few people, scientists perhaps, alive inside keeping the beacon from being sabotaged. Kazuma's father? Who knows? We have nearly nothing to go off of except that it's possibly a strong AC, who was able to launch a direct attack using a small squad of men and his own powers. So, mission on the 10th. We are getting ready in the meantime. I think, if the Captain knew this was coming, that him challenging us to the dual the other day was part of his testing us for this mission. I think I understand what he's saying, Especially about me, as the team's support. If I had protected Malik rather than protecting Jenny, we would have… if not won, than at least taken out one of the threats against us before losing. I'm only as important to the team as how healthy and protected everyone else in the team is.

The Captain is a sly one. I should learn well from him. He tricked me into reexamining what was important about my role on my own, if that makes sense. When and if I get the chance to act on all of this subterfuge I go on and on about, I'll have to remember that he's smarter than everyone gives him credit for, and that's just the way he likes it.

Personal news; I have been working some light clerical work with a Liutenant Vicks in hopes of gaining some pull within the fleet. Thompson, with his eye on Fleet Admiral, is volunteering far more often than I can, with my duties in the kitchen and Infirmary, not to mention my deal with Etna at the shop and occasional visits to Dr. Turtle. Then again, putting myself in direct competition with Thompson is unwise. setting myself apart as slightly above average, and having the man at the top trusting you will probably be preferable.

Payday came and went. I was able to shore up Jenny's ailing defense and Zero's HP with some vitamin supplements. Also I am creating two HP ups for Kazuma over tonight and tomorrow. He offered to pay for them. I charged 6000 each. In the meantime, also creating vitamins for personal use using the money I saved up from working with Etna.

Have decided to stop experiments with Jenny's spices, however, after the head chef confronted me. However, I have gotten the information I needed about how the spice should be used. Apply dried Bayleef buds lightly and early in preparation, as the taste is rather strong for some palletes, and be wary of allergy. The chef meant it as a warning, but he has invited me to present dishes to be served at lunch. Given some time, and with the invaluable data gathered from Jenny's herbs, I think he may be surprised at what I come up with.

—-

A peice of carbon paper found in a file in one of Leo's drawers:

RECIEPT FOR MONEY TRANSFER

2 (two) HP up Vitamins -- 6000py

Total: 6000py
Tendered: 6000py

Seller signature: Leonard Nathaniel Blume

Signature: 中村 ε’Œι–“

—-

LEO'S CHART HAS BEEN UPDATED:

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Log date: August 10th

I sit before this journal speechless. I just don't quite know where in the world to begin. I've seen some violent things. I've volunteered at hospitals and I've studies anatomy. Seen photos of horrible accidents and just how ugly and horrific the human body can become when mangled. However, this…

Today's experience was absurd bizzare novel

The morning started with a dream. I only vaugely remember most of it, and I've already told the Admiral everything about it, so I need not repeat it here. The gist is that someone, some clairvoyant AC out there is trying to give us a hint. The other's dreams were apparently shared, but I, for some reason, was left aside and isolated. I got into where I wasn't supposed to be and didn't really learn much, but I rummaged enough to make someone take notice. "She's young" the creature said, "She'll learn." At first I thought the dreams might be sent by Etna Damascus for some reason, but she is an old woman. Unless they are talking about someone else or she's younger than we think she is, then it couldn't be her.

I also believe that the best other possibility might be either Lady N, who apparently has a degree of mental influence, Lady S or O, whose powers are relatively unknown to me, or, conjecturally, Kazuma's mother if she was in fact an AC as I suspect.

The day's mission was

I was assigned team leader. I think I understand the pick well enough. Everyone came back alive, although Kazuma was badly injured. I believe, or at least hope, that he was under the influence of Lord D when he went into that rage. It seems he played havok with telepathic powers. If not, however, I cannot in good faith let this stand. This is an uncomfortable position for me. My sense of order and my idea of how this team should operate and my desire to see our mission carried out decrees I hand out an appropriate punishment - Myself, and not through a medium like Kits or Damasi. However, I fear that if I do that I may begin to strain my personal relationship with these people who I've taken a vow to keep safe. It's difficult to be friends with someone you give orders to. I see that. My orders were being carried out, but some of the orders were out and out ignored. Sam in particular did not withdraw from the pool of area when I ordered her to, and had to be rescued by Thompson. Kazuma, although he may have an excuse, did not stop attacking until he was almost dead. What's more, I should have seen the correct course of action for Kazuma sooner. It wasn't normal, this blood rage. I should have ordered Thompson to put Kazuma to sleep sooner. Thompson and Tessa followed direction well, with Teresa's intelligence proving quite valuable in seeing possibilities I did not, although I know how she gets with authority. If I put myself on the same plateau as Kits and Damasi, she'll begin showing me the same disdain she shows them.

I must ask Admiral Damasi for his opinion, although, perhaps it would be more fruitful to ask the Captain. Damasi is approachable, yes, and must be astute due to his experience and position, but the Captain is shrewd and far more calculating than we initially gave him credit for. Perhaps the best approach would be to ask both, and get a diverse opinion.

As for the mission itself it

I was wrong about Lord D. Disappointingly, he turned out to be far too mad to really have any political clout in the Damascus family. If we had let him live to try for the throne, he would have been put down like a rabid dog before he even made his first move towards Raymond. The Patriarch (or Etna) chooses his sires well. Reymond is the shining face of the future, while the others are most likely a hodgepodge of enforcers, executives, and wild animals.

I can't

The mission, as it stands, is a mild success. Even if there were no survivors among the scientists, we rescued Freya. Best of all, Freya was not fighting on Lord D's side as I feared she might. She was seriously hurt, but she'll survive, and perhaps maybe even trust us to a far stronger degree now.

Teresa is the brain of the team. Her mind keeps us informed and sees angles the rest of us cannot see, and she keeps the rest of us sharp by honing her edge against us. Sam is the impetuous, fragile, but ultimately well-meaning heart of the group. She can be naive, and she can make bad decisions from time to time (Apparently her clairvoyant navigation of the TRE ship was all luck!) but I think, if our group would ever take a moral wrong turn, it's her that will pull us up out and away from it, if we can only keep that heart untarnished. Kazuma is the strength of the group. At once, he's a sword and shield, and he'll never give up if there's even a chance of victory. Thompson is, at his core, a mover and shaker. He's the undisputed 'face' of this group, and besides that is reliable and dependable. I think, if we choose to go the way of ascending the military ladder to achieve our goals, Thompson will be the most valuable talent for it.

What about me? I never really look at myself very often. Considering how many close brushes with death I had today, perhaps it's time I started. I've always thought of myself as… background. I never wanted to go into medicine because I wanted to save lives or be a hero. I went into medicine because I observed a need for a doctor on par with my mother, and decided to spin it into a career. I cared more about my future pension than whatever work I would actually be doing. So then, what am I now? Now that the colony is destroyed, I have nothing but my father; and even then I dread the thought of ever seeing him again before our mission is over; and my friends. I'm a doctor now not because of the pay, but because there was an actual pressing need for me to learn the art as fast as possible. I have been assigned team leader, but why?

Reading back on my journal I suppose it's easy to see why. As soon as I joined this military I was appraising everything. The enemy, my friends, my leaders, my pokemon. Just about the only thing I didn't really stop to look at was me. Is my mind only fit to take advantage of others'? Am I so heartless that I must assign someone else to keep me moral? Will I bend to injustice if the terms suit me? Am I growing so cold as to never seriousely interact outside of this shield of mates I have constructed around myself? I don't want to punish Sam for disobeying my order, but do I really need to do that to keep my authority? They trust me. I think they might even respect me, but is this enough?

Thinking on it, perhaps this experience is shocking enough that any punishment I mete out will be overshadowed by the trauma. I'll still speak with the Admiral and perhaps the Captain, but I think I won't give any kind of formal citation for disobeying me. Here comes Calculating me again: The benefits do not outweigh te risks. If I raise my fist to Sam, I earn her begrudging respect and obedience. However, I risk straining her mind after this horrible experience, I'll lose respect from Teresa, and Kazuma probably won't think too highly of it either. Just about the only person who will understand is Thompson. If I get too close to Thompson without considering the others, I alienate them. 'Heavy is the head that wears the crown.' I got my first taste of command and here I am worrying about it.

Go see Dr. Turtle tomorrow afternoon, and the Admiral in the evening.

—-

Log date: August 11th

Yesterday's journal seems so scattered and panicked. I think distance has made me feel a little better about the mission. Spoke with the Admiral, and recieved a little counciling from Dr. Turtle - Although the threat of tests does not do my stress any favors. Turtle's tests are really of no consequence I think. He's asked us to come back tonight.

The admiral's words are probably the most comforting thing. He trusts my judgement.

Frivolous news; I am unsure of why I'm able to think about food at a time like this, but I've thrown myself into the presentation for the cafeteria.

Personal news; Jenny and Zero are both progressing wonderfully. I don't know when they evolve, but I believe it's soon.

[Below are about a page and a half of scratched and scribbled recipe plans.]

—-

Log Date; August 12th

As I predicted, Zero has evolved. He is now a "Ranculus" according to the pokedex app, and has apparaently aquired a measure of intelligence, as well as the capacity for speech through telepathy. He also enjoys hugs and regards me as "Papa." He always did enjoy hugs of course, but now he has the arms to do it. I am not arrogant enough to assume I know what Teresa and Sam might be going through, but I have to admit I think I understand a little better. Perhaps it isn't in my best interest to ignore them as a family as much as I do. It is a good lesson that I am not always right, nor can I calculate from every angle at once.

As for the rest of the day, I worked in the infirmary and in Etna's shop, and Dr. Turtle requested my presence tonight again. I hadn't realized how busy I'd made myself, really. Ah well. At least I can be garaunteed some rest at Turtle's lab.

Frivolous News; Recipe is coming along. I have requested to test it on the kitchen tomorrow.

—-

Log Date; August 13th

[Blank Page. this day's log is continued on the next page]

—-

Log Date; August 13th

I do not want this journal to devolve into useless chatter and gossip. That is not the purpose. I don't want to talk about my feelings within these pages, nor do I want it to be a means of ventilation for me. This is meant to be a record of my progress on this mission I've taken on.

That said, I think my mental health has been deteriorating these past few days. Even as I've focused on other tasks I've ignored the real issue. The mission. The mission was horrible. Lord D's power, it seems, was the control of his own blood and body parts as a means of attack. I think I shall never forget the vision of a sharp pillar of bone and meat flyig towards me, or the terror of seeing Sam, Teresa, and Thompson wading inside a pool of blood that seemed to try to suck them down as they fought. I felt terrified and powerless. I feared for the safety of my friends, and it was all I could do to not abandon Freya altogether in favor of keeping the others safe. The Admiral's words helped. Sam has been a great help. As I thought, it's Sam that pulls us out when we go too far.

Today, Kazuma defaced the chart. Really it's because I hadn't updated it yet. I didnt' want to look back on that event at all. I was angry at Kazuma for that, but I think Sam set me straight.

I seem to be telling things in completely the wrong order here. Another cause for my irritablility was because last night's Turtle-induced sleep was not restful at all. It appears the "Dream world" or "Dream plane" that Dr. Turtle was talking about was true. Sam, Tessa and I had another shared dream experience. It seemed to be some kind of castle or cathedral, it was raining. It's worth noting that Sparrow was describing something much like it at lunch the other day. The interesting thing was that I saw more of those white creatures. It appeared to be the unevolved form of the thing I saw. What's more, they attacked. I think, judging by my experiences, that these creatures are "guardians" of this dream plane. Perhaps somewhat like white blood cells. They close in on foreign bodies in a dream and expunge you. The little ones appear to attack. They seemed fairly weak on their own, but the swarm tactics were daunting. If they had attacked in full force we wouldn't have stood a chance. The large ones, however, seem to take a different tack. They seem intelligent, and appear to have the power to force you out of a dream. Both times I awoke from that state it was because that creature… if the little ones are called Young Ones I suppose the big ones are the Old Ones… forcibly woke me.

I think, and this is more famous speculation, that Sparrow may have something to do with this dream business. I was so preocupied with the idea that the dream before must have come from TRE that I ignored another possibility. Perhaps it came from within. Sparrow was unconciousely showing us something of her true power. The dreamscape may be a general place we can go, but whoever populates that world might be the most powerful sleeper there. Sparrow'scastle appeared in our dream. If this is true, then, I may be on the right track. If we find out how the dreamworld works, perhaps we can track who sends messages like the one the others got. If we can, and IF the message was from TRE, we may have an "in."

What's more, Sam appears to have caught one and it came with her into the real world. I don't altogether trust it. Even if it was an ally it was fairly bloodthirsty, but if Sam can raise it to be a loyal member of her team all the better.

Of course, such action-packed sleep does not refresh the body. My irritability shown through, even with all of the good things that happened.

Personal News; Jenny evolved. She is now a Meganium. I am quite impressed with both of my pokemon. However, I'm afraid It's not going to cut it for long. I think I shall buy a pokemon tomorrow. It's expensive, but In the long run it's a much needed investment. I did some research in pokemon which might complement my team. Jenny is fairly pure defense, and can support herself and others with her screens, while Zero can switch between offensive and defensive on the fly. Therefore, I should not try to attain another wall, but instead try to fill another niche. More Statistical team support. I went digging and discovered a few pokemon who learn a peculiar move called "Baton Pass." Among them, a mammalian pokemon with two heads called a "Girafarig" that I have seen before in Etna's stores. I'd been tempted before, if only to see how a pokemon with two heads operates, and now I have the excuse. Once I recieve it, I should see if Sparrow would enjoy a ride.

Frivolous News; The dish went over well. I think it will enter the rotation as a special dish to be served every other week or so. Even if all of that dramaticism with Kazuma overshadowed it, I think I really am happy about accomplishing that at least.

Tomorrow we visit the colony. I think the higher ups want this to be a general shoreleave, so no untoward missions I hope.

—-

LEO'S CHART HAS BEEN UPDATED:
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—-

Log date August 14th, 200

Today was a day of empty, lovely, realaxation peppered with a strange intrigue. Most of the day was nothing special honestly. The others had a lot of fun, and I simply relaxed and wandered a bit taking everything in. This colony is quite the resort. There is a salt water beach, several beachfronts, and all the tourist traps you can throw your money away on. A few were novel, like the fishing game, but I did not appreciate the gaudy tourist merchandise, nor did I appreciate the sheer inflation in the restaurants and hotels we stayed at.

But then again, there were facinating snippits. I remind myself that it is common practice on most colonies to pepper the habitats of any onboard pokemon with everstone dust to inhibit evolution, but the twins found, through their remarkable digging prowess, that the entire ecosystem was laced with it top to bottom. Its understandable to keep the pokemon population small and cute for the tourists, but it seems like it's a bit large scale. I tried to entice the twins to investigate further, but I don't know if it took.

And then there were the scares. Sam disappeared for a few hours. I worried a bit, but I know she can at least take care of herself. She must have slipped away while Tom and I were capturing that strange dry land fish. Either way, she came back a little while later with talk about a woman or something. I thought it was odd and that I would have to simply let it drop when Kazuma suddenly up an leaves as well. Perhaps I should have a chip installed in my brain that lets me keep track of where everyone is at any time. Perhaps there's a newtype power for that. Don't mention it to turtle when next we meet, he might want to run some tests.

Kazuma comes back and tells us that it's Ava. Instantly I make the connection and see that Sam is ready to wander off again like always. This time I make sure I'm positive that Ava hasn't exibited some extranormal power over her the time before, and send her off with my blessing. That night, we hear Neptune tapping on our window. Neptune leads us to the hospital where Sam has minor injuries from a scrap, presumably with Ava. She is banged up, but she came through with a few interesting points:

~The lords and ladies are chosen not necessarily for their powers, but allegedly for a "Naming scheme." Perhaps the name of the Lord has to match up with the assigned letter, as childish as that seems. However, it does seem to corroborate. F was Freya. R is Reymond, E is Etna. I doubt this is anything new for the intelligence officers in the military, but it's an interesting bit of trivia to me.
~Lord D and Freya were disliked within TRE. A bit late to take advantage of either of these points, but perhaps it leads us to something interesting. Is it perhaps possible that TRE uses the military to dispose of Lords and Ladies once they are no longer needed or once they become troublesome? Freya was, after all, costly to keep air conditioned, and was thought of by her own guards as a brat. Lord D was very clearly insane at this point and probably needed to go in any case. It makes sense that D would be sent on a doomed mission to collect F with the leaders knowing full well he was trapped and doomed. For that matter, when he called for the super weapon it did not work another clue that D might have been on the outs.
~TRE wants Kazuma. Not only wants, but needs him. It's not his powers, flashy as they are. I think it has to do with his connections. Father and mother are both viable connections and both important to the TRE cause for ACs.
~Ava was vacationing. Ava also did not take the opportunity presented to her to get rid of an enemy that lay prone before her. Ava also called an ambulance for her. As unsettling as Ava is, she does not appear to be a sadist or a murderer. Opportunist, perhaps. Ambitious, certainly. Worthy of underestimation, never. She is, or was, the first step in the TRE indoctrination process and yet she isn't quite indoctrinated herself. And she gets vacation time? Interesting.
~The attack on the colony was apparently an accident assuming Ava isn't lying. Why would they want us to know that they may have lost control of their horrific super weapon? That leaves them at a huge disadvantage. However, perhaps it was an accident in the sense that someone who should not have (Say, Lord D or someone else equally mad) took control and went on a spree. Neither scenario inspires confidence in TRE personally, but it may be a valuable piece of information to have. Assuming once again that it isn't a lie.

Those were the most interesting points to me, and I made sure to pass them all on to HQ. Kazuma nearly instantly ran out until Tom went after. Of course HQ decided to clamp down on us so we didn't interfere too much. At the end, I suppose Tom and Kazuma made up from whatever fight they were having, because when we got back to the hotel room Kaz had punched Tom in the face. It may seem absurd, but if you knew Kazuma you would understant.

Another interesting point, I hesitate to bring up dreams again, but it is clear that there is some significance to them. I observed a strange phenomenon when I was inspecting Sam's wounds. As I looked them over, the bruises seems to fade and the swelling seemed to go down visibly. It brought to mind the dream I had the other night. I don't remember much, but I remember there was blood, and I ended up closing the man back up with my bare hands. This is something I perhaps should see Dr. Turtle about.

In any case, tomorrow is another Gym. Water. Perhaps Jenny will be a good choice.

Personal news; Alphonse has been quite a treat to have around. Even with a lackluster performance atthe restaurant, owing in part to my misapprehension of the circumstances I thin, his attitude always seems quite positive. I am confidant that he and Jenny will mix well, and he gets along quite well with Zero. Speaking of Zero, I have asked Teresa if I might borrow some of Sparrow's old schoolbooks. Since Zero appears to have developed at least human-like intelligence I wanted to teach him some important fundamentals. Although I have a suspicion that Teresa's study group idea has less to do with schoolwork and more to do with reconnecting all of us back up, It is a good opportunity to begin to give Zero lessons. I think reading and writing are the first concerns, with math as a close second.

My aim, I think, is to have Zero become a sort of personal assistant to me, as well as be one of my stronger pokemon. It would certainly help if he knew how to organize, and was sharp enough for me to bounce opinions off. Perhaps, I'm being ridiculous and wishing for a sidekick. A small, Green, gooey Dr. Watson.

—-

Log Date: August 15th 200SE

This morning was largely taken up by our gym challenges. I was a little perterbed by the fact that there was an entry fee, but I soon understood. It was a private gym meant to fleece tourists, so it stood to reason that it might skim a little off the top. Sam, for her part, decided that she wanted to pay my way if we would fight together. It soon came out, however, that there was an ulterior motive. Apprently Sam's mother is having trouble adjusting to her new life, and needs financial help. Sam has been sending her own money home to pay for her mother and wanted to pay my way if I would give overr some of my prize money to her when we won. Well, of course. The Gym battle itself was not so cut and dry however. The woman in charge was tough, and used a very effective strategy to obscure which pokemon she was using. Using a half-remembered tip from Tom, I decided that Zero, rather than the obvious Jenny, was the right choice for this fight. There was a move, I surmised, that would effect Zero if he was the opposite gender from her. Naturally, this would cause her to waste a turn breaking her move against Zero's species' trait of remaining uneffected by indirect attacks and effects. A combination of Magic Guard, Luck, and help from Sam and Colonel Oinky helped seal the deal, and I fought my hardest to make sure we earned that prize money. We won, finally, when I was forced to experiment with the unknown pokemon and realized too late that the obscuring strategy was meant because we had the type advantage all along. I should remember this strategy for later. Kazuma did pick up a Horsea after all. We won, but only barely. I gave half of my prize money to Sam.

Afterwards we were soon called back to the ship. We answered a few questions and got more than a few interesting revelations in return. I finally let loose the basic gist of my theory that Kazuma's mother is alive and well and may be one of the keys to this whole mess, and I hated to say it, but I intimated that Kazuma's father may have something to do with it. And then I learned some new interesting facts. Apparently we each have relatives who have at one point or another disappeared or came under fire from TRE or TRE suspects. Tomoe Kurita-Steiner was one, Teresa's Aunt who disappeared in much the same circumstances that Kazuma's mother did. Another was Sam's father, who apparently disappeared, and another was, possibly, my own mother. If all four of these people were alive and well, it would mean both good and terrible things for all of us. Reuniting with loved ones is all well and good, but if they disappeared because they were awakened, like us, they could have been dissected, brainwashed, or otherwise experimented on by TRE. It's possible even that they could have taken spots as Lords and Ladies at some point. It's horrible to think such things, but it may be true and the possibility must be considered. At the moment, Kazuma's family is to be the focus, but if the others appear as well I won't discount any information that comes my way.

As well as our family members, there is also another rather suspicious piece about Tom. His friend was apparently injured in action and sent back to his home colony on IC004. While it would be best for him if it were true and he was merely living off of a military pension with an old warwound to show for it, some things don't quite add up. If Tom's friend came back to the colony, and they were friends from childhood, then why wouldn't his parents know and mention it? Tom appears to be on good relations with them, and writes often, so it seems strange they would keep something like that from him. The other reason is that medical technology is quite good. I should know. If he had a wound bad enough that he couldn't replace it with life-like prosthesis, or mend it with modern surgery, then he must have been hurt quite badly, and is fragile enough that he can't enter back into active duty. On the other hand, it's possible that his wound was not serious, but he decided to leave active service anyway. While understandable, this does seem to clash with the picture I've recieved of the man through Tom. I'm glad nudging Tom to getting the Twins on the case finally paid off.

So what's the other option? That the records were somehow doctored and he was not in fact sent home? Then why give him a purple heart? Why not go all the way and have him killed in action to complete the charade so nobody asks question. Unless the Admiral meant that he earned his Purple heart posthumousely, in which case it's his fault for being unclear. I was unable to question the admiral further, unfortunately, as he had recieved word his friend Admiral Maccauly Tompkins had died. I excused myself with condolences of course.

Personal News; I began Zero's studies. He seemed to take to it well, although his hands were rather fat enough that he had trouble holding the pencil. I began with the fundamentals, the Alphabet and phonetics, and even taught him the ABC song. It was fun in a way to see him slowly progressing. His Z was far more impressive than his A but that's not saying much. Not bad for the first day. Then again, this is all just mimicry. I've got to make sure the information sticks. Even if I may be asking slightly too much of him, it is nice to see improvement and if he remains my pokemon for long enough that he can write coherently, it will be a lovely thing to see, although I know it may take years. I should ask the ranch heads about teaching pokemon of higher intelligence and what to avoid.

Dr. Turtle has requested another session in the Dream world We resume our shoreleave tomorrow.

NOTE: Tomorrow is Kazuma's birthday. Get him a present.

—-

Log Date: August 16 200SE

I write this at about 9 o'clock before we have set out to continue our shore leave and will most likely be continued tonight.

Let it be known that I do not want to visit the dreamworld again. As far as I understand it, it appears to be some kind of cosmic, dimentional gate-slash-library. The creatures there, the so-called "Old Ones" are actually called the "Janitors." It is their job to make sure humans do not trespass for longer than necessary. We were trespassing. And thus the deal was struck.

The Janitors sometimes make "Pacts" which grant you the ability to move freely into and out of the dream world. Pacts are not free. Pacts are in fact quite steeply priced. The term is that you trade one of three things; a personal item of great import, a memory or set of memories, or a piece of your so-called "soul." Naturally, this does not sound like the most fair deal I can think of, or rather, it is fair to a point- there are apparently some great abilities that come with free reign in the dreamland - but may not be worth it in the long run. Tom, Kazuma, and I were unimpressed and passed on the deal, but Sam and Teresa seemed to actually consider it. I could, of course, only voice my dissent and request to be woken up. I was relieved to find when I awoke that no one had taken the deal.

Howeve, this opened an entirely different kettle of fish. Thompson had apparently been rather overbearing in his insistence that Teresa does not take the deal. Teresa, with her reaction to authority, was understandably not pleased. They argued, and both said too much to one another and also exactly what needed to be said. I stepped in a moment later and succeeded (though on purpose or not, I'll never tell) in deflecting some of her anger onto me, before taking Tom aside to speak frankly.

Tom's heart is very much in the right place. He has the same goal as pretty much everyone here. We would all die for one another, I'm sure of that after today and the inner bargain I was prepared to make with myself to free Sam and Tessa from their deal before I came to my senses and stepped out. Our problem is that while we would all die for one another, none of us are willing to let others die for us. Teresa has the added challenge of being close friends with Sam, who at times takes this to its extreme, and also the challenge of needing to never be trivialized or protected. It's hard enough for her to raise Sparrow with Sam playing martyr every other day, but to have Tom, by all right a perfect stranger, getting in on the act must be endlessly infuriating. Add in her dislike of authority and you have the recipe for disaster that erupted almost as soon as we all woke from our sleep.

Tom is rather blunt in his execution of his protection of others, lets put it that way. His white knight routine may work on others, but to Tessa it is like Kryptonite. I suggested, and he seemed to understand, that Teresa needs a dab hand when it comes to keeping her safe and in line. Or rather, understanding that she doesn't need to be KEPT in line. She's perfectly smart and capable on her own and resents anyone trying to do anything for her. Really, it's a problem of trust. Trust comes naturally to me around Kazuma, Sam, and Teresa. I know their personalities rather well, or I like to think I do. To Tom, we're a bunch of rowdy kids with puffed up self-importance who've never seen real war, which, admittedly, is absolutely correct. However, we are capable, and he forgets that sometimes. He doesn't always remember to trust us, and let go, and it bit him on the nose today.

I think I explained it in a way that he would understand, and now I need to wait for Teresa to come to me. If I go to her and just TELL her to make amends with Tom she'll never accept anything I say. If she comes to me, and I still play my hand too high, she may still refuse to listen. The desire to reach out to Tom is going to need to come from her, and on that point I have to trust in Sam, who is far closer to Tessa than any of us. If anyone can change her mind, Sam can.

It occurs to me that, through as little weedling and meddling as possible, everyone in the group appears to be getting along with everyone else. The last link in the social chain appears to be Tom and Teresa, which would always have been the most difficult connection to cultivate. I expect that my policy of "controlled inaction" is probably my best recourse at the moment. Once we've achieved group cohesion, I think we'll all be the better and stronger for it.

Trust is the watchword I think, and it always was it seems.

—-

LEO'S CHART HAS UPDATED!

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—-

Log Date: August 21st 200se

I am disturbed by how little I feel as I write this. For once, one of my predictions about the Lords and Ladies came true. Lady S was unsuitable for upper management because she was mad. As mad as lord D, I think, although that's another story. Therefore, being unable to convert or help her, we instead had to kill her before we were killed ourselves by her powers. I'm sure the others are making all sorts of justifications in their heads about why they killed her, or what killing her meant. She was obviousely suffering for her powers, yes, she was a mad dog, yes, and she was going to murder Team B and us, yes. However, I don't believe I'm going to indulge in any of that. The simple fact of the matter is, she was TRE. She threatened us. She could not back down. We killed her. It's not our first kill, but it's bound to be our most traumatic.

Sam, predictably, was the only one who did not take part. Tom put her to sleep before we did the deed because of this. There was backlash. We were treated to a visceral vision of just how fragile this whole situation is. When Sam Woke up, I could see she was hurt by what we did. There was nothing else she could feel. The only thing I could do was play the tough leader card and let Teresa talk to her. I wonder just how long I can rely on Teresa to keep Sam sane.

I told Sam to leave and get herself reassigned to a non-com position. I didn't think I meant it, but perhaps I did a little. I don't doubt that I need her around. Without her there what were we? A pack of dupes playing right into the hand of a high ranking TRE executive. However, Sam is so close to the breaking point. If she can't calm down, I fear she may break utterly.

In any case, soon after, we were debriefed. The meeting felt as if it took a whole day, and afterwards we were all quite drained. Our main concern was in seeing that the well-being of Lady S's pokemon was honored. A few were sadly unable to adapt and had to be put down, but most were either given a good home, or were interred on the ship until further notice. Some voices were raised, and some hurt feelings were displayed. It is still very raw even as I write this. The ship that Lady S owned is going to deliver the pokemon to their new homes. I believe it would be a good plan to get on that ship's crew. A smaller crew would allow us to distinguish ourselves more, and the others would be able to see the pokemon off.

Speaking of which, I don't quite know where this came from, but I breached the subject of military advancement with Teresa. She did not seem opposed to the idea. Our cause would be well-served if one of us were in a position of power.

Otherwise, I have neglected to mention another bit of terrible news I did not have an opportunity to mention. Lord D is still alive. Rather than being a person, it seems that Lord D is more of an infection than a person. Whoever we killed there was still Lord D, I am sure of that, but he became lord D at the cost of himself. The mystery of Kazuma's mood a few weeks back appeared to be him fighting off an infection of Lord D. I do not believe he succeeded, but instead believe that Lord D was told to back off. I think this because of what Sam said about Eva. That they need him of his own free will. If he joined TRE because he was mind controlled by Lord D's spores or bacteria or what have you, it would be useless.

In any case, because of all of this, Sam has been estranged from the rest of the group, Tom has put several feet in his mouth, Kazuma is seething underneath all of that brave spirit, and Teresa and I are all but planning a mutiny. The situation was going so well a little while ago, but the cracks weren't filled in quick enough, and now everything is a mess again. At least we defeated one of the leaders, although I doubt she was very useful to TRE as anything but a simple enforcer, and I do feel a little irked at havin played right into her hand, even if her hand was ultimately to defeat her.

Personal news; I have nothing much to report, as the day has not seen much in the way of freetime. Over the past few days Zero's education has been going well. We're still learning the alphabet, and I've been reading some simple books with him, but soon we should get into spelling and penmanship. I doubt I'll be able to teach him shorthand, but I should at least be able to teach him to spell Cat, ball, look, or what-have-you. I do hope Alphonse and Jenny don't take this focus on Zero too hard. I should give them some face time as well, outside of training in the gym.

—-

As you turn the page, the next page is taken up by a full two-page spread where Leo's chart has been transferred. The wall where the chart used to be is instead taken up by pages of Zero's scribbly handwriting.

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—-

August 23rd, 200SE

I like to think that our group is as strong and capable as I imagine and hope they are. Most times they do not disappoint. However, ours is such a fragile, precarious web of relationships. Who is talking, who isn't talking, who hates whom, who said the wrong thing, when. All of these things appeared to come to a head today.

The beginning is the place to start. The day before began with the dawning of payday, and with it I was finally able to pick up the latest member of my team. Maestro, a Clefairy. An interesting species of pokemon which features a pair of small wings and a surprisingly tough physiology. I did a bit of reading before I bought him, and I have found that young clefairies can even survive in the vaccuum of space for short periods of time, and they are usually associated with the Earth's Moon.

The next day, we were coming upon a new colony, SCIC-04, a construction colony and, it turns out, Tom's home. He agreed to show us around, of course. At breakfast, we joked, and laughed, and poked fun at one another, but I could just tell, just under the surface, this was all a smokescreen. Just us looking away from a real problem. I must find a way to relieve tension before it explodes like this, but without being overbearing. Poor Sparrow has probably been catching on to the oppressive air. I gave her new Sewaddle a checkup and tried to make her feel better by focusing her on her new friend. It only just occurs to me that I have become attached to the girl. I don't know why. We have barely said three words before that, and at least half of those had been me playing a tough exterior, but, with with my pokemon being suddenly dear to me, I can't help but feel for Sam and Teresa. It's barely anything like that of course, but I'm getting off the subject.

The moment came when we began to explore the forest, and Sam's pokemon, her "Young One" ran off. He apparently disappeared and Sam was in a panic until the creature suddenly came back, apparently eating reality as we knew it. I can't help but be alarmed at what the little thing can do, or how much he can eat. Kazuma couldn't help himself either, and thus the house of cards came tumbling down. In Kazuma's panic he became liberal in his speech, too liberal for Tessa and Sam's liking, and I'm afraid I missed the end of the fight, as Teresa suggested I take Sparrow elsewhere.

When I listened to Sparrow, she talked about things I would not have dreamed of thinking of at her age. The infighting between our group is tearing her apart, and Tom and I did my best to comfort her. She said something that touched me in a way I don't quite understand. She said she wanted to be strong. Strong enough to stop the fights. I can't help but identify with that point of view. The moment, that horrible, powerless, moment where I thought my father had been killed. That had to have been the moment where I changed. I am different, because of the decision I made then and there.

However, Sparrow is not me. My transformation has not been a pleasant, or particularly noble calling. If she is driven in a similar way to how I was driven, by trauma and heartbreak, then I can't stand by while she becomes that. I can't let Sparrow become like me. Perhaps it's egotistical to think that way, but I think it's valid. I am not something to aspire to. I am not a hero.

Afterwards, it all started coming out. I only regret I was not present for most of it. I can only expect that everyone had it out eventually.

I was not present, however, for a very important reason. The Captain had decided to ask for my opinions of assembling personelle for the prize ship, now called the "Young Blue." I explained… and I can't believe I said so while I'm sure they were off feuding, but I meant it. I know as well as anyone how strong we can be, how strong we are, if we can only work together. I think I said exactly as much as needed to be said.

The captain appears to trust me, if only because he started to tell me something with weight and importance, and not immeditely relevant to the mission. Perhaps it had something to do with his possible relationship to Suzan from the Ranch, or perhaps it was somehow about me, and my conduct, or perhaps it was advice. Either way, he didn't trust me enough to go through with it. The information itself is, however, immaterial. The fact that he almost told me is telling in itself. Perhaps it may be time I approached him, rather than the other way around, before we fly off and it is too late.

I spent the rest of the day exploring the TRE ship. Is it strange to want something like command of a ship? Ah well. In any case it is far too soon. Even if I had command I wouldn't know what to do with it.

In other news; New arrivals are Maestro, and Eileen, a Paras who was taken in by a flawless capture by Maestro's lullabye. I hope both will fit in with the current team. I very nearly traded Kushiel along for a Zigzagoon, but decided it was too expensive, and probably not worth troubling the others for money. It was a silly idea in any case. I thought Zero might like to make friends with a pokemon that is slightly cuddlier and smaller than him. Paras is a little creepy-crawly for those purposes, and Clefairies are surprisingly tough. Ah well.

As a Post Script… I would like to say I want to speak with one of the Slowkings. I don't quite know why, or about what. Perhaps I am simply facinated with talking pokemon. Perhaps, as former members of TRE, I think that they might have something to say. Perhaps I'm simply mad. Either way, I can't see them off as POWs without seeing them one last time.

—-

August 25th 200SE

I wished to postpone writing until I knew the full crew manifest of the Young Blue. As Kits said, I and the others have been assigned to the ship, along with a few notable faces, including Brian, Sam's Superior in the Rangers, Suzan, Captain Kits himself, and one of the twins. A few relatively minor but significant events happened over the past few days, which I would like to relate.

First, i did meet with the Slowkings. I assured their leader, Eustace the 24th, that we are allies, and if they are ever in need, then they are to call us.

Second, I did meet with Tom's parents and discovered the source of the accent.

Third, I have found that my ranks have swollen to 6 pokemon suddenly with the addition of Rigby. He is a Zigzagoon, very rash and rambunctious. I think Zero will enjoy his company. However, the way I aquired him was as a gift from the rest of the team. It seems after I left the pet store, they pooled their money and bought the Zigzagoon I was looking at. I appreciate the gesture, and I think he will be a useful and easy to raise companion. I head they enjoy to pick things up, which means I should not leave him unattended for too long.

He has recieved some very basic Zero Gravity training now. He should be ready to fight alongside the rest of us fairly soon.

Of course, all of the above occured over a backdrop of transition. We moved all of our belongings off of the Ocean Blue and onto the Young Blue. I think it should be a fairly fresh start for all of us, having released a lot of excess baggage on the colony.

I hear that the group is conspiring to come to the opening day of the ship's Bath house. This should be interesting. Naturally I have to go. I suppose my pokemon will enjoy it.

—-

August 26th, 200SE

Just a quick note. Maestro's abilities are exactly what I wanted them to be. He was able to lock down both of the opponent's pokemon Before they could land fatal blows, and allowed his battlemate Turin to land us a victory. Well done Maestro.

I shall report in greater detail to the day after we investigate this bath house.

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Post Script:

I have just returned from the bath house. It was a strange and thouroughly uncomfortable experience. I do believe I may have accidentally caused Liutenant Lowell to be enamored of me. I would not really mind, except that being enamored of by Liutenant Lowell is apparently an adventure unto itself. I have neither the time nor tha patience for something like that, and expecially not fraternization with a superior officer. If something like that came to light, In the long run it may hurt my credibility and paint me as a gold digger sleeping my way to the top. I never thought I would have to worry about such things.

In any case, Eileen had her debut in combat, and did very well for herself. She is still rather fragile, but a few days on a strict vitamin regimend will help that. Payday is tomorrow after all.

—-

August 27th, 200SE

After yesterday's excitement, I'm glad to say today was far more positive. I followed through on the challenge I posed to Captain Kits the day before. Before I give the outcome of that, I should note my strategy for the battle. I knew that Kits had a heavy type advantage over nearly all of my team, therefore, my only real recourse was to rely once again on Jenny and Zero, my two best. I had to push their advantages, however slight. Even with super effective attacks coming at them from both sides, both are tough enough that they will certainly be able to hold their ground until they can get a foothold. I decided to put advice from Liutenant Lowell in practice as well and focus on one or the other at a time. First I focused on the Absol, but changed my focus partway through to take down the Luxray.

The fight was very back and forth. I have a feeling that if Kits had pushed his own avantages in typing and type coverage against me, I would have fallen without even taking out one of his pokemon. My goal for the fight was not to win, although I had no intention of going easy, but to merely try to impress him as much as I could with the growth of my team and strategy. It became clear after the fight that the fight was also factoring into whether he would punish me for covering for Kazuma and Tom's escapes from the bath by posing the challenge in the first place.

I think I got quite lucky, although I would be a fool if I didn't give myself and my team at least some credit. Both Jenny and Zero took many attacks, a lot of them super effective, and stayed up long enough to wear down both of Kit's pokemon. Zero in particular took a vicious beating, but was able to deal his customary massive damage in return. Jenny stayed up longer of course, and through some luck, benefitted from the double dose of Swagger given to her and came out with a fairly strong razor leaf attack. It came down to Jenny Vs. Absol, and I think I was quite lucky. The Absol couldn't get a firm grip on Jenny, and Jenny was able to wear him down with her attacks before she could get worn down herself.

So, yes, I won. It's not the cleanest victory I could have had, but I think it is worth at least the PPup I received as a prize and the momentary acknowledgment of skill by the Captain. My entire team witnessed the battle and were able to learn greatly from it, with Maestro, I think, coming to understand that I want him to be able to do much of the same things that Jenny and Zero end up doing often, but with his own twist. I think I shall feed him the PPup drops and train his Ice Beam attack. He should be able to do it more often after the vitamin regimen.

Afterwards, Teresa decided I was a prime target, fresh off of my victory with Kits. I used Alphonse, who was in excellent form, and Zero once again. I won, but once again, I would not have done so if I hadn't gotten lucky. All one can do is take advantage of the breaks and do one's best to recover from the spills.

In other news, I've forgotten how enjoyable baking was. The poffins I've made for Tom have turned out wonderful, and I even got a nice Dark-resist berry out of it. If a situation calls for life or death, It may be worth it to give it to Zero.

—-

August 28th, 200SE

Do I lie too often? I suppose I don't mean a lie as in an untruth. I've found myself to be quite truthful in what I say for the most part. I suppose I mean a lie of intent. I must put myself across as ever competent, ever cold, ever distant. I don't think those are lies. It is when I have to act the same way towards those closest to me that I think I may lie too often.

Sam came to see me yesterday evening. It seems she had just been in a fistfight with Lowell, and seemed to be quite upset with her. It was about me. That's not the only reason she came to see me of course. She also wanted to ask if I really wanted her to leave the group. Of course I don't. The strategy was to put pressure on her, challenge, her, make her tougher. She was supposed to lean on Teresa for support and tough love. However, she came to me after she came to Teresa. That's not out of the ordinary of course. I merely had to keep up the pressure a bit and make it clear exactly what I wanted from her. However, halfway through, the conversation turned towards Lowell, and myself. She seemed genuinely upset.

I'm not sure what happened, but I was stunned for a moment. I do believe that I hold her in the palm of my hand. Now that she's there, however, can I really look at her as a commodity? Can I really just see her as a styler, and moral center, and a specific skillset and ignore that she is Sam Wellmark, that I've known since school? I wanted to tell her. When I told her I trusted her before It was just what she wanted to hear. It was just what she needed to hear. Does that make it not true? At the moment, no. I do trust her, but it doesn't feel right for her to trust me, the way I've tried to manipulate her in the past.

In any case we arrive at the colony tomorrow, and I've kept busy baking a recipe for poffins for Tom and vitamins for Eileen and Maestro.

—-

August 29th, 200SE

Today we spent time back in SC031. I think we succeeded in our mission to leave the Combee swarm with Ariel the gym leader, and also reprised our gym challenges besides. Teresa and I won our challenge, with Maestro being indispensible in keeping the attack load on his partner light. Also, contests occured, with everyone but myself participating.

However, I made a very large mistake. Tom and I were sitting by, sitting for Sparrow when we got a call from Ariel. She wished to talk with us and didn't have much time to do it. Tom and I decided it was better if we went together, and we left Sparrow in the care of our pokemon. I honestly thought that Sparrow would have been safe in Zero's care. He's tough, he can't be affected by most status-changing moves unless he wants to be, and his psychic powers are powerful. I suppose, however, that since he was caught unawares that his immunities might not have kicked in and Sparrow was kidnapped as Zero was the victim of a Hypnosis attack.

It turns out there are some very interesting facts about Ava that I was not privy to. Apparently, Sparrow has a sister, and from the way she talks, that sister is Ava. Personally I don't really care who Ava is at this point. She has crossed too many lines to be seen as anything but a stooge of TRE and an unstable force besides. If she shows her face around us again, she dies. It is as simple as that after toying with Kazuma, using my lapse in judgement to her advantage, and kidnapping Sparrow and causing the sequence of events which caused her to begin to display newtype powers. Teresa has requested we keep quiet about her display, and I am not going to disagree.

Eileen's Vitamin regimend has already shown some real progress, as has Maestro's altough Maestro can take it fairly slow since I decide when he evolves. And also, I must note that Ariel's talk with us WAS very important. The loyalty of such a powerful woman will help us a lot in the long run. Was it worth putting Sparrow in Jeopardy? I suppose the saying about having one's cake applies here.

[The Chart has updated!]

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Post-script:
Teresa, Kazuma, and Sam have taken the deal. I am very angry. And frightened.

There is an older sparrow in the dreamworld. I don't understand it, but she appears to have some precognitive powers. Related to Sparrow's outburst, perhaps?

—-

September 2, 200 SE

Just a short one today, a brief digest of the past few days. I decided the best way to confront Kazuma and Teresa on the deal would be to cook the group a dinner, and then invite them to a private talk afterwards. I think Kazuma in particular seemed resentful of me confronting him, and afterwards he seemed to pull away from the rest of the group. I'll give him time I think. If he decides to come back, it will be good. If not, then I think something else might be going on.

It was an appetizer of Fruit salad, Pineapple, apples, tropiusfruit, seedless grapes, and oranges served in their own juices. For the main course, it was spicy grilled Swanna breasts a la colony 031.

Eileen finally evolved, and all of those vitamins finally paid off. I think Eileen and Maestro's training will take presedence from now on.

—-
September 3, 200 SE

I think it is important that I write what happened today. Iris Camellia, our teacher, and former comrade, is alive.

It began when the Young Blue was attacked this morning by the TRE. We managed, through our counter assault, to fight them off. However, we found that on the ship was Lola, Miss Camellia's AC pokemon. I hope I made the correct decision, but I refused for her to show us to the people in charge. At that time, we were in enemy territory, and Kazuma had called attention to a few hidden enemies. I had surmised that as soon as she had led us deeper into the ship we would have walked right into a trap. Naturally, we might have been able to fight our way out, but it would be stupid of us to trust our fates to "might" alone.

I attacked first, firing upon the two hidden pokemon, and we were treated to how much our teacher has grown. Indoctrinated or no, she is a formidable enemy, and we just barely held our own against her. In the end, we finally were able to subdue and recapture her when we were treated to a rare visit. It seemed the Damascus on board was none other than Reymond Damascus himself. I find it highly suspicious that of all of the TRE family members we could come across, we would find the big, pretty important face of the TRE. He, or at least someone, displayed some strong psychic ability, but while we could not rescue Miss Camellia, we were able to recapture the AC pokemon, her Sneasel, Lola.

We enacted a strategic retreat, which I thought necessary. Based on the fights with the Damascus members we'd fought before, I could tell that being at our full strength is paramount. Fighting them at anything less than our best is a recipe for defeat and capture. The others may feel differently, but I was hurting all throughout that battle, a side effect of the fighting style I've developed along the way I expect.

Immedietely after, I spoke with Dr. Turtle. It was far more civil than other talks we've had. I think I gave him some new ideas. Hopefully they'll end up useful avenues for him.

After that, then, Eileen, probably wound up from the excitement this morning, saw fit to finally evolve. I believe that leaves Maestro as the only unevolved member of my team. Once he is ready I'll speak with Tom about that.

And finally, I regret to say that Sam decided to challenge Kits. And not to a Pokemon battle. Sam decided that she wanted to try her luck against Kits in a fistfight, and I must say that is probably one of the sillier things she's ever done, even if she does have a habit of coming out inexplicably on top of the odds despite losing. I think, while Sam was certainly not thining of the politics of the situation, Kits was quite impressed with her performance. Even if she lost, the mere act of standing up in front of he monolithic Captain Kits armed with only your fists and without pokemon, for no other reason than because he's there, takes a certain kind of guts that I think many people find infectious. Ariel certainly did during the gym match. Kits did during their fight. If only Sam knew what she had she might be able to take advantage of Kit's favor, but of course that would most likely ruin the effect.

Sam's fight was quite different from Mine, and from Teresa's. Teresa and I, I believe, both fought him to express our own efforts at defiance, Teresa's overt and direct, and mine more to do with covering for the others from Kits discipline. Teresa needed to win because of honor, and lost. I needed to win in order to make my felonious challenge legitimate and keep myself and the others out of trouble, and I won. Sam's challenge, however, I think it was made out of a certain measure of devotion to the good Captain. I think she honestly likes Kits, and wants to get closer to him. It's a very Sam-like way of getting what she wants, I suppose.

In any case, it has been an exhausting day and I still ache from the morning. Hyper beams are surprisingly unpleasant. Good night.

—-

September 4, 200 SE

Morning:

I write this having just woken from a dream. I want to get it all down before I lose it. I awoke in the dreamworld, and was greeted there by someone who calls herself "Mistress." Defining features: Black skin, like the color, not the ethnicity. Black sclera. Lips and Teeth. Teal Irises. Otherwise an attractive and shapely woman.
Her offer was to let me explore the dreamland for free. Suspicious. She still wanted me to sign a contract. It is very difficult to read in the dreamworld. She insisted I sign, and I made her a counteroffer to enact an escape clause. She ignored this and tried to sell it to me with her body. I managed to resist.
Was then hit with another Hyper Beam. This is the second in 24 hours. Someone riding a Bouffalant came and, for lack of a better term, rescued me from this strange alien woman. Then he touched me and I was suddenly a contestant on Iron Chef America, and I was horrified because I was on the wrong show. I don't remember what happened after that.
What I take away from this is that there is some internal conflict happening between this "Mistress" and the Janitors. I also believe the man with the Bouffalant is the same man Sam talked about. I also take away the fact that, despite refusing to partake in the dreamland, It appears able to draw me in against my will.
Must warn the current dreamers about this "Mistress" person. Also Tom must learn about the dreamworld today.

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On a future page, there is what appears to be a child's drawing:

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September 6th, 200 SE

I shall break down the past two days into small easily digestible pieces, because several important things occured and I do not want to miss anything.

First; I understand the captain's reason for doing this. He did not need us to convince Havelock king to take the nidoran family. However, I can't believe he wouldn't know we wouldn't have headed over there immedietely to try to help and ingratiate ourselves with Mr. King like we did with Ariel. He could have let us know we weren't needed. I wouldn't have needed to bet almost my entire base of funding, and Sam and Teresa would not have needed to dress themselves up in those ridiculous outfits after losing the bet. Thankfully Kazuma and myself won in any case, and I think he liked us. It does feel nice to have such a petty grievence against the captain, though.

Second; One good thing did come of it, or at least something terrible for sam, but good for us in the long run. Sam met with the captain, unfortunately in costume, and overheard a conversation with an Admiral about the mission we would later that day embark on. When we arrived at the forest, Sam's tip proved helpful in discerning that the one behind all of these kidnappings was none other than a creature called a "Mewtwo," a genetically modified creature cloned from legendary pokemon DNA for a war centuries ago. This creature, apparently immortal, powerful, and mad, was kidnapping the people of the colony in order to build a "Family" for himself. I don't know what got into us, but naturally, we had to save it after trying to teach it that kidnapping is wrong. We let it go after defeating it, although I doubt we could have really held it. Holding it would have been futile, killing it would have left a bad taste in the other's mouths after so much hard-hitting death, so the only option was to set it free. Hopefully it does indeed get away. I don't believe anyone truly needs that much power, and if they want it they should certainly not have it. I should now, because I confess I wanted to capture the Mewtwo for myself, and I am sure I would have squandered its power before it turned on me.

Third; related to the above, before Mewtwo left, I extended a hand in alliance to it just in case it ever was in trouble, just as I did the Slowkings and Ariel. I think an alliance is a far more palletable state than ownership of something like a Mewtwo. I only hope it is in its right mind to remember, and in it's right mind to come find us when we are able to help.

Fourth; Unexpectedly, the Captain has ordered us to pull out a day early from the colony. It was disappointing to many, and I decided to go investigate. The public story is, naturally, that the gambling and imbibing occuring on this colony is bad for the troops. I can't argue much, but that's not really a reason. The real reason is that the Admiral, the same one which sent us on the mission against Mewtwo, appears to have a knack for humiliating the Captain, and has taken much of the credit for the operation for himself. I don't mind much, that means he takes responsibility for letting the Mewtwo get away, and if he cannot catch up to it, it's far worse for him than if he had ordered us to do it. I am also glad that we won't have to join the hunting party, as the conflict of interests would be very great.

Lastly; Misc. news: Did not manage to defeat the "Red Hat" Johnny, but then his strategy appears to prey very well on thick-skinned pokemon. I have also given Jenny over to Kazuma temporarily, to be trained to be a more effective healer. I have also given Zero a set of markers and a pad of sketchpaper, as well as an assignment. He gets to draw one thing for each letter of the alphabet and also write a few sentences about that thing. I think this will be a good way to use his knack for the artistic to help him learn.

One last thing, set a date for visiting the Bath house more often. I think I've put the team through quite a lot, and they all deserve some time to soak, especially Eileen, Rigby, and Maestro.

—-

September 8th, 200 SE.

Business first. We managed to defeat this "Mistress" creature last night in the dreamworld. I'm not entirely sure what went on, of course. There was so much excitement once I awoke in the dreamland that I forgot my proper dream immedietely. However, after killing it, we were confronted by a Janitor. He wished to have a copy of our memory of this event. I once again declined the offer, however, Tom finally took it. I am alone in abstaining from the dreamworld, which is fine.

The Janitor did give me a 'day pass' of sorts, where I took in the dreamworld fully for the first time since we first bumbled our way in. I actually caught two pokemon there. I have aquired Proteus the Bidoof, who has a strange emotional instability which must be inherent to dreamworld Bidoofs. It makes him utterly unpredictable in a battle as he is constantly gaining and losing morale with regards to different statistical qualities, but might also be quite useful ultimately, especially if I can find some way to pair it with Alphonse's status as my baton passer. I also aquired Elizabeth the Miltank. I found it interesting that such a common domestic pokemon was found wild in the dreamworld, and I soon realized that she too had a strange dreamworld property. It seems that she has a voracious appetite for grass and leaves, and has a strange ability to derive a brief boost of power whenever she partakes, and is deft at snatching attacks involving plants out of the air harmlessly to snack on.

I caught her as a possible second healer-type pokemon to ease some of the strain on Jenny as my primary healer, and to replace her while she trains with Kazuma. Miltank are known for their healing abilities, even if they involve ingesting Milk straight from the… source. But it seems that with this new ability of hers, she would also be a physical powerhouse when paired with Jenny. Jenny can fire off her leaf attacks, which Liz can catch and eat to power her up. I shall certainly introduce the two of them.

Now beyond business. It appears that I had been caught up in a sort of romantic cluster orbiting around Sam. I shall just admit here; I care about Sam. I don't know if this is tantamount to "Love," but I think it is quite clearly the closest I've ever felt to it. However, It appears such talk is something of an achilles heel of mine. I was completely blindsided, and by the time I had got my bearings it was already over.

Sam, it appear, has entered into a serious relationship with Teresa. Not a ruse, or a convenience, but a real relationship. Thinking about it rationally, yes, this is the best outcome. For Sparrow's sake, a stable home life is important. For all intents and purposes, the entire ship had figured up to this point that such a relationship was already the reality so it was useful in not needing to set a lot of people straight all at once about the truth.

However, I can't help but feel anger about it. It is, however, quite impotent anger. I will get over it I'm sure and will get back to business as usual.

Another note, Zero has told me that Jenny and Alphonse both wish to be groomed. I think this is more than fair. Judging by his drawing so far, the reason they are getting groomed may have something to do with more relationship nonsense. Perhaps those pokemon husbandry classes that I had to take for my major will be useful after all.

—-

September 11, 200 SE

I do believe that I've had my first, best, real lesson in, as ridiculous as this souds, love. I've still come in second place. Not even second place, for Tom holds that distinction, but second runner up. Sam, bless her, is an idiot, and due to some terrible misunderstanding, she had broken up with Teresa. Some rubbish about wanting Tom to be happy. She doesn't understand that Tom is a big boy and I'm sure he'll manage whatever she decides, but she has to actually DECIDE something. I had thought the matter settled days ago, but, well, I suppose if something is worth doing it's worth doing twice.

Thankfully I think that I, less impotent and taken unawares than last time this flared up, was able to speak with Sam. Well, speak is a soft term for what I did. I believe I may have gone too far, but I had to get my point across any way I could. This entire arena is so new and strange to me, and even now I'm trying to find my way, but logic dictates that the most important issues were the well being of the most amount of people important to us. A traumatic breakup would only confuse Sparrow further, who had already lost so much to this war, and Teresa's confusion and general depression would dull her edges and estrange her from Sam and Tom. It is a bad sign when myself and Kazuma become your only outlets for friendship. For Sam's case, even if she had gone through with it and ended up with either myself or Tom, she would always be guilt-ridden about leaving Teresa in the lurch and for confusing Sparrow. Tom would be similarly consumed by guilt I would assume, or I have greatly misunderstood his capacity for compassion.

The only one who would have truly profited from the breakup, it occurs to me, is myself. Perhaps that is why I skewed so harsh when I reprimanded her for her stupid decision. Somewhere, I know that it could have worked. I could have swooped in to take Sam for myself. But, of course, she could not have been happy in that case with all of the strife and guilt hanging over everyone else's heads. If she could not be happy with me, then there isn't any point in her being with me in the first place. I'm also realizing that love and mathematics are very difficult to apply to one another satisfactorally.

I think the saddest part of all of this is how readily she took my punishment. I berated her and slapped her, and she looked me in the eye and accepted all of those terrible things that I said. I wonder if there is something to that charge of masochism I leavied at her. It isn't ureasonable. She's always hated the ugly business of war, and hating what she has become might leave her unable to defend herself against us, her friends, and perhaps myself specifically. Perhaps I'm reading too much into it, but her ego may need a boost in order for her to come out of this war in one piece, psychologically. Then again, perhaps I've waived that responsibility by letting her go back to Teresa. I suppose it's up to her and Sparrow at this point.

This journal entry has no strategic importance at all and I should be ashamed for having gotten this far without noting down something of value to the military effort. We've met some pirates that seemed to be anti-military as well as anti-TRE and recieved the reward for it today. He appeared to be an AC, but since we were his de facto betrayers I suppose we won't be able to call on him, like Ariel, or the Slowkings, or how I hope it will be if we ever meet Mr. Tsuu again.

Proteus evolved and both he and Elizabeth are becoming quite strong. Maestro has evolved and gotten stronger under Tom's watchful eye. It seems as a Clefable he's aquired the ability to lessen the amount of damage taken by his adjacent allies.

Jenny and Alphonse have had an egg, and the child will be an AC pokemon. Turtle was inordinately excited.

I've also been considering what the next companion I aquire shall be. It is risky to have so many pokemon, I've already eight, but I'm confident that Zero, Jenny, Alphonse, and Maestro have all become as strong as they need to be for the moment. I can focus my attentions on Eileen, Elizabeth, and Proteus, and for my next partner I should try for something that covers a weakness in my team. Perhaps a ghost or dark type.

Yamask 50k
Stunky 60k
Dwebble 40k

For the sake of my pocket book let us hope it is possible to capture one on a colony.

Oh, and I suppose it's worth mentioning that Kazuma is dating one or both of the twins. It is unclear. I pity him, but I suppose at a baser human leven governed by simpler needs and urges, congratulations are also in order.

Oh-God-How-Did-This-Get-Here

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