The noon sun hung overhead as Kalin shuffled slowly back to his cave. Finn still hadn't returned home; a fact that had the Eevee worried. He decided that his efforts would be better placed elsewhere as he rounded the corner and entered the cave. Perhaps Julexa and Candice were back.
When Eevee approaches the cave, soft humming can be heard from inside, along with a soft crackle from flames that are dancing about. Inside the cave, Julexa and Candice are sitting down near the fire, Candice stuffing the small pichu's face with some more fish that she just caught. When Eevee comes in, Candice stands up and looks down at Eevee. "Lopunny, lop.("Hello Eevee~! There you are, you're just in time for breakfast~!<3")" She says, as she slides a small canvas blanket over towards Eevee, with some koi and berries of at least a few sorts. Julexa greets Eevee with a small burp and a groan--Candice must've overfed her again.
Just in time for breakfast? Someone's not used to the cleft's solar cycles yet. Kalin supposed that he could treat the meal as lunch, giving Candice and Julexa a smile as he stepped closer to them, taking a seat next to the blanket that was provided for him. She made a fire, too! Kalin wondered what kinds of relations she had to humans, or if she lived in a place like Treasure Town.
"Eevee! (Thanks Candice, I was getting hungry. I thought I'd go look for a friend who disappeared recently, but no luck.)" said the Eevee as he reached for a koi with his paws and took a bite. It was..warm? Did she cook it? Kalin was impressed; the only pokemon he ever knew who was versed in such knowledge was Hypno. "Vee! (You know how to cook, too? That's amazing! Don't you think so, sis?)"
Julexa gave another soft groan and a nod. Candice smiled. "Lopunny, lopunny lop.("It was nothing. I saw some trainers do it in the wild before, and eventually I mimiced what they did...and I eventually learned how to make a fire.")" Candice said with a shrug. "Lopunny? Lopunny lop?("Friend who disappeared? Who?")" She asks, as she scratched her head
"Eeeeeevee. (A human boy, one of the only two in this world I respect. I traveled far and wide with him when I met Mogwai. He never understood a word I said, but he could tell that I trusted him. I saw him again recently but after the thing in the sky lit up, he disappeared. I've told Mogwai that he's probably out saving people since he's just that kind of guy, but who knows what kind of trouble he could be in..?)" said Kalin, pausing to eat a couple of the berries.
Candice listens and nods as Eevee told his story. As he talks, Candice starts to think to herself. "Lopunny...lop lop Lopunny...!("I hope you find him soon. I'm sure he'll be around somewhere...upon hearing about that, I'm worried that my family might be in here as well...and I would like to look nearby. If they fell in the hole, they couldn't have gotten far..")" She says, a little uncomfortably, as she struts to the cave mouth, flicking her ears outward as she looks at the sky.
"Eeeevee. (That's a good idea..we'll help you look. Right, sis?)" asked Kalin, shoving the last koi in his mouth and poking the groaning Pichu with his paw. "Vee. (If they fell with you, then..the most notable areas nearby are a town to the west with a big machine staring up at the sky, a cave full of waterfalls and bats that opens up to a valley to the north, the ocean to the east of Truce and some mountains to the south. There's also a canyon north of Truce.)"
Having realized the ground he mentioned was quite a bit to cover, Kalin quickly followed up with a recomendation. "Vee? (Why don't we start with the cave since it's closest?)"
Julexa rolls back and forth at the poke, with a groan. She nods at Eevee. Candice, meanwhile, claps her fuzzy paws together "Lopunny! Lo-punny!(" Sounds like a plan! Let's go!")" She says, determinedly, as she strolls out of the cave, leaning on the outside and waiting for Eevee before heading out. Julenxa pushes herself to her feet and waddles along behind Candice.
"Veee. (I've seen the valley beyond before, but I've never actually looked around inside. Short bipedal creatures populated the area, and at the time, I was feeling too cautious to attempt to speak to them.)" noted Kalin as he caught up to Candice and led the way northwards to the waterfall-filled cave.
"Eevee. (Careful, the place is full of bats. They won't bother you if you don't bother them, but the goblins are a different story. You're big enough that they might not try to attack you, but you never know.)" With that, he cautiously proceeded inside.
Candice nodded, ducking down as a few Battum fly overhead, low enough that Candice can reach up and poke one, which startles it and makes it fly faster. Julexa scratches her head "Pichu....?!("Why does this place look so familiar? I wonder if this is going to go exactly like a dream I had recently?")" She says, mostly to herself, as she follows Eevee and Candice through the cave.
A splashing sound echoed across the area as Kalin lifted his feet out of a puddle of water in his path, joining the sound of the flowing waterfalls. Eventually, the group arrived at a fork: one path to the left, one path to right. Kalin began to head down the path to the left when he stopped and glanced at Julexa, as if he were expecting a pair of goblins to arrive at any second with less-than-friendly intentions to attack her.
"..Vee. (..Oh yeah, it was the other way.)" said Kalin as he chuckled and took a few steps back, taking the path to the right.
Candice headed down the right path after Eevee "Lopunny...("I just hope that my babies are safe. I would hate for them to be hurt and left somewhere to fend for themselves.")" By now, Julexa is starting to shiver some, like she had an eerie memory of this place, and waddles up to Eevee: "Pichu?("Eevee? It is strange if I say that I remember being here before?")" She said, as they walk through the cave paths
"Eeeevee. (Not at all. Perhaps it's just your instinct whispering to you?)" answered Kalin with a smile. He had forgotten that Julexa spent a long time in society; she probably never heard the whispers of the wild. Kalin found the line of thought uncomfortable because he, too, had trouble hearing them the more time he spent around Mogwai and her friends.
"Vee. (Don't worry Candice..we'll find them.)" the Eevee tried to say reassuringly. Many dangers in the cleft could ensure their easy demise, yet the cleft was home to many beings who would find the baby pokemon adorable and willing to look out for them. Kalin pressed on until he arrived at a mouth leading outside of the cave.
A bug stood before the group as if demanding that they turn back, but it quickly found itself in a lifeless pile of its own entrails under Kalin's paw as he ran forward into the light of day. "Eevee! (This is it! Let's hope those creatures can understand us.)"
As the trio come out intro the light of day, they come into a sizable clearing, made of small adobe huts with leaves for roofs. As they stand there, a small yellow ball runs by Julexa with a bow in a single lock of hair...it obviously in a hurry to get anywhere but where it was, tumbling through the cave mouth behind the trio. Another runs by, with a....buneary numming on it's head? It runs by screaming and shouting at the top of it's lungs towards the top of the cliff.
Kalin blinked a couple of times as he watched the figures run by, the latter catching his eye. The creature above LOOKED like Candice, but he wasn't ready to jump to conclusions. Still, his observation had to be noted. "Vee? (Did you see that? That brown critter..)"
Candice nodded, blowing past Julexa and giving chase after the buneary and the Mr. Saturn that she was attached to. Before the Mr. Saturn gets to the cliff, Candice hopped up and managed to release the buneary from her grasp on the Saturn. In her arms, the buneary says "Buneary!("Momma!")" as Candice snuggles the buneary. "Lopunny!("Bad girl. Don't run off again!")" She says, sternly as the Saturn stops and turns around: "Thank you for freeing me from the brown menace." He said "I am Mr. Saturn, we are all named Mr. Saturn here."
Kalin nodded fiercely as he followed Candice in the chase after the creatures. He stopped after she successfully rescued her young from certain demise. What timing! And what a jump! His eyes lit up as he watched the scene, moving forward slightly. "Eevee! Vee? (So they -did- fall in with you! This is great! Hi there, are you okay? Do you know where your sister is?)"
The Buneary shakes her head. "Buneary..buneary.("No...I didn't see my sis...only where mommy is!")" She says, with a giggle as Candice nuzzles her again. The Mr. Saturn speaks up again: "I saw another brown menace playing up north where The Mad Duck resides. He is less tolerant of antics by young ones." He says "I will take you there if you wish, but beware--he is not the friendly sort." He adds, as he bounces up the path towards the bridge to the north. Julexa just sighs and follows.
It certainly sounded as if the Mad Duck lived up to his name. "Vee! (Right! Let's go!)" said Kalin with resolve as he followed as well. They were fortunate so far; he did not want for their luck to run out.
After a few moments, the group comes to a red bridge, cracked and worn with the active passage of time and weather. "This is as far as Mr. Saturn can take you. Good luck." He says, bouncing down the path away from the bridge. Loud, angry quacking can be heard from nearby, and the splashing of water...along with cries of "Buneeearryy!" Soon after, The Mad Duck comes running into view, the Buneary riding him like a mount. She appears to be happy, the duck...not so much.
Kalin let out a sigh of relief as the group made it to the duck: the kids were safe. It certainly posed no threat, but it needed to be liberated. Kalin gave Candice a nod and approached the duck cautiously, expecting her to retrieve the other Bunerary while he calmed the denizen down. "Vee. (Are you alright? Stand still for a second, we'll get her off of you.)"
The Duck thrashes and bucks about. "(QUACK!)" It cries out hopping and thrashing about, not paying too much attnetion to The Eevee next to it. "Get it off me...GET IT OFF ME!" It yelled as it bucked and swayed as the Buneary holds on tight. Trying to time it right Candice ends up swiping at air a few times before the duck starts to calm down enough to allow Candice to pluck the Buneary from the duck's back. By now, it's frothing at the mouth and twitching violently.
Kalin watched with relief as Candice retrieved her other young, but felt as if someone needed to stop the time bomb before someone got hurt. "V-vee. (S-sorry about that, she's just a newborn. Thank you for keeping her safe for us.)" said Kalin to the duck as he moved closer to Candice and her two Bunearies. "Eevvee! (I can't believe it, they were both safe and sound right here! Hi there, I'm Kalin. Do you girls have names?)"
The Duck quacked loudly, before twitching, saying "If. You. Ever. Let. That .Thing...near me. Again....You. Will. Taste. My. FURY!" It says, stomping off with an errant twitch. Julexa releases her bated breath as she looks up. The one that was retrieved from the duck is missing some fluff on her ears and her lower body...she speaks first: "Buneary! (Marie!")" followed by her sister: "...Buneary("...Sariah")". Candice hugs her two young close to herself in relief.
"Eevee. (It's good to meet you, Marie and Sariah. You girls have been very brave. This here's Julexa, she's my little sister. Come say hi, sis!)" said Kalin as he glanced away from the baby pokemon and up to their mother. "Vee? (Where was your mate when you fell? Do you think he might be here too?)"
Candice shakes her head as Julexa comes up and hugs the two buneary, making them feel welcome. "Lopunny...lopunny, lop...("No....he got...caught by a trainer and he was nowhere near our home when whatever sucked me in here..")" She says, with a sigh as she hugs the two close after Julexa was done.
Caught by a trainer..a fate akin to being caught by the Sableeye. But if the "trainer's" of her world were at all like Jameson, Kalin supposed there were worse fates. Regardless, the Eevee's ears drooped down a little at hearing that. Perhaps he should have asked her away from the ears of her children. "..Vee..(..I'm sure he's alright. If it were possible to return, Julexa and I would help you free him, but..)" Kalin glanced away. He hadn't mentioned this part yet.
"..Eevee. (..there's no way to leave this world.)" Kalin lied. What was the use of getting their hopes up? He knew full well that the agents of the mana didn't approve of his return to his world, only that the whisper of the wind willed it so. Kalin returned his gaze over the Buneary and reached his paw out to pat them on the head. Growing up without a father would be harsh, but not impossible. He never had one either. They would merely need to be taught how to hunt and defend themselves.
"Eevee. (Come on, Candice..let's head back. You guys can stay with us for as long as you like.)"
Candice nodded. "Lopunny.("Marie, would you like to ride on Uncle Eevee?")" She asks, as Marie was settled on Eevee's back. "Lopunny, lop-lopuuny("It's okay, she won't be like she was on the duck...he resisted.")" She says, with a smirk as her chin rests on Eevee's head as they head back to the cave, Julexa following behind at a close pace.
Uncle Eevee? Kalin laughed at the title as he traveled along with the others. In his mind, he was proud of the success of their little 'rescue team'. In a way, part of his dream to unite pokemon together had been fulfilled. Perhaps a day would come when the rest of that dream would be realized: a place of pokemon for pokemon, undisturbed by those of the cleft who would exploit them.