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Just your average medic-trainer dude
A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F


couple? Where is she even getting the hair dye? Does she have a supplier or something?

[Marley laughed, shaking her head at the thought of Pippa running around with a bottle of hair dye while Ryder was asleep. Shaking her head, she smiled at Ryder’s goofiness. It was nice to see him like this. It was almost as though things were back to normal.]

Well, you do have the watermons going for you. Nope, I’m pretty sure I can imagine it. 

[The line slowly crawled forward and Marley noticed Ryder’s reluctance to talk about Nico. It hurt a little, because he was her original pokemon and her closest friend, but she didn’t want to make things weird again. As Ryder patted Pippa, DC scurried up his arm and settled on his shoulder, smiling and patting the tall medic with his paws. Marley smiled and rolled her eyes at DC exaggeratedly, causing the mon to stick it’s tongue out at her.]

Mhm, it would if he’d stop goofing around. But… that’s what I love about him. Ooh, a Kingdra? I see it! Wow…


I wish I could figure that out! Maybe you can use your detective skills on her and solve this mystery once and for all.

[Ryder cast a knowing glance down at Pippa, smirking at his Pokemon. They’d gotten good at communicating like this, after years of man and Pokemon spending time together alone, and Pippa seemed to pout at the threat of her fun being taken away from her.]

Right? They’re the best thing about me. I’d be kind of lost without my team.

[Ryder blushed slightly when he realized what he’d said, but it was true - his team was important to him, and he didn’t really have the highest opinion of himself. He just hoped it didn’t make anything worse; he was probably just overthinking things, but it would only make him feel like crap all over again if he heard Marley agree. He chuckled and reached down to pat DC as well, feeling significantly more comfortable now that Nico was away and trying not to feel too guilty for thinking that.]

Hey, nothing wrong with him having a little fun! I’m sure that he’ll buckle down and do his job if any danger arises, right? That just makes him totally inconspicuous. I’ve never seen one in the water before, just at Centers…wow.

A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F


What? She dyed your hair blonde? How does that even happen?

[Marley couldn’t help but giggle at the idea of Ryder blonde. That sounded like the weirdest thing ever— she couldn’t even imagine Ryder with a different hair style, much less a entirely different color. At any rate, Pippa certainly knew how to cause a commotion.]

Oh, no, it’s okay. He can get a bit grumpy when he’s out anyways, so it’s not a problem.

[She could see just how nervous Nico made Ryder and she wanted to kick herself for thinking that things would be okay. Of course they wouldn’t be okay. These last three years… she’d forgotten the contempt that Nico held towards Ryder. Mainly because she’d tried to forget about Ryder as best as she could. Marley smiled and watched the two little pokemon play— it made the line seem almost enjoyable. Looking around, there were several other trainers who had their Pokemon out and almost all of them were water types. A Poliwrath here, a Psyduck there, Marley even saw an adorable Buizel.]

Mhm… Nico’s just a bit cautious— it’s his nature. But really, Ryder, it’s okay. I don’t need him out here. Besides, if something was to happen, DC can handle it.


Oh, yeah! She’s done it a couple of times now, actually. I don’t know how she manages to sneak hair dye into my things, but she does. I have pictures you can see - hopefully you don’t have to witness it in person, though.

[Ryder’s stomach had felt like it was in knots for a large majority of this meeting with Marley, but hearing her giggle made the tension dissipate, and the most genuine smile he’d had yet in her presence spread across his face. Without giving himself time to doubt it, he just acted natural, slipping into his teasing nature.]

I look awesome blond! All surfer-dude chic. It’s so awesome that I bet you can’t even imagine it without seeing the evidence.

[He tried to ignore talking about Nico - he didn’t need to ask the question he was wondering, which was if Nico was always grumpy or if it was just when he was around Ryder. He knew that he’d messed up in the past, but three years had passed - he just wanted to forget about that period in his life, and he hoped that Marley’s protective Pokemon would too. Ryder busied himself looking around, grinning at the sight of all the other water mons and occasionally patting Pippa on the head to keep her from running off to play with strangers.]

Electricity’s probably going to do you a lot more good with all of these guys, anyway. I mean - holy moly, I think I see a Kingdra way up there by the boat! That’s so cool!


A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F


[Marley laughed at Pippa’s cheerful antics and tickled the little penguin’s stomach. It was nice having the little mon there— it made things easier. But, she couldn’t help but notice how Ryder wouldn’t meet her eyes when she reassured him. It was going to take some time for them to… just be normal people again.]

Nope, it shouldn’t take very long at all. And I’d be very surprised if Pippa was able to hide a gun somewhere.

[When Ryder’s expression turned to one of dread, Marley glanced down and caught Nico attempting to look innocent. With a sigh, she tapped him on the nose, reaching for her Pokeball. She didn’t like having to call him back, but if he was going to make this worse than it already was…]

Come back, Nic. You’ve caused Ryder enough trouble.

[She popped the ball open and he returned obediently in a beam of red light. Shaking her head, she looked up at Ryder apologetically. Oh Arceus, this was awful… Fidgeting a little, Marley pulled one of her other Pokeballs out and let DC out to play. The little mon squealed in excitement to see Pippa and ran up to playfully squeeze her cheeks with his tiny paws. She watched the two mons interact for a short while before turning back to Ryder.]

Um… I’m sorry about, Nic. I thought he’d be alright with things, but I guess I was wrong. I’ll keep him in his ball for the time being, okay?


You never know… She’s like a miracle penguin. I still don’t trust her since that time when she dyed my hair blond again.

[Without even thinking, Ryder raised his hand to rake through his hair, as if trying to make sure that hadn’t happened when he wasn’t paying attention. He personally didn’t think it was a good look for him, but he’d be interested to see what Marley thought. Maybe he’d show her some pictures later as an icebreaker or something, since it seemed like they still needed it.]

Oh, hey, Marley, you don’t have to do that. I can handle a little bit of being terrified that I’m going to be lit on fire - probably’ll do me some good to be more on alert, right? I’ll be prepared for anything that way!

[He offered her a feeble thumbs up even as Nico disappeared into his ball. Getting him put away probably wasn’t going to help Ryder worm his way into her Pokemon’s heart, but it was too late for that now. He scuffed his shoes on the ground again, but the guilt was quickly ebbed away as soon as DC appeared. An ecstatic Pippa flailed her wings and went right to playing, and Ryder couldn’t stop the easy grin from spreading across his face as they reached the queue for security.]

Guess we’ll just have to find one of my Pokemon he’d like to be friends with and get him acting like these guys. I’m really sorry about that, Marley. 

A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F



[He ducked his head somewhat bashfully. Was expressing his thanks getting back into awkward territory? He had no idea. As the minutes passed, it was getting easier, but Ryder still was floundering with figuring out how he should act in Marley’s present. Ryder blinked in surprise when he saw her waving the ticket in front of him, and he reached out to take it from her,careful not to accidentally brush his fingers against hers or anything else that might be awkward.]

Awesome, yeah. D’you think they’re going to do like full body pat downs and all that stuff you see on TV? Because I always have weird medical things in my pockets, and…er, come to think of it, it would be easier to just empty them.

[Ryder made a face, not sure what he was rambling about again. He guessed Marley just made him that nervous after all this time, but hopefully it was something he’d get used to. He picked up the pace, trotting towards the emptying line.]

Wouldn’t want to upset Nico!

[Ryder tried to keep his voice teasing, but ended up sounding maybe a little bit too serious - Marley’s Pokemon still scared him quite a bit. He waved her ahead of him, taking the ‘ladies first’ stance but not speaking it aloud as he watched the fire dog out of the corner of his eyes warily instead.]


Wellll… They can’t exactly go to jail. But, they can be scolded.

[Marley made a stern face at Pippa before breaking out into a smile.The little penguin was just too cute— she could understand why Ryder let her get away with so much.]

Um… Don’t worry about it, Ryder. You have as much of a right to be involved in this as anyone else.

[She noticed the slightly embarrassed expression on his face and couldn’t really understand why— was it because he felt awkward about the whole situation? But… she couldn’t dwell on that, not right now. They had to just… move past their history. When he started rambling on about pat downs, Marley couldn’t help but laugh and shake her head.]

I don’t think so. They’ll check our bags and make us go through a metal detector, but other than that, there shouldn’t be any problems.

[With a small smile, Marley nodded and jogged towards the dock. When she arrived at the entrance, slightly out of breath, Nico bounded up and licked the sweat off the back of her hand. With a laugh, she shook her head and took her place in line. Looking back at Ryder, she patted Nico on the head.]

Well, I think we’ve successfully avoided his wrath.

[Unbeknownst to her, Nico was giving Ryder the evil eye the entire time, his distrust readily apparent in his expression.]


You’re lucky you’re not gonna end up behind bars, then, little girl.

[Ryder shook his head at Pippa, still amused that she was able to make up for some of the awkwardness Ryder was displaying. It certainly didn’t hurt that she was chirping and nuzzling against Marley, seemingly very happy about their new companion. If Ryder was really honest, he was happy about their new companion too…he just had to give it time, before he could expect to be her friend again. He nodded when she mentioned he had every right to be here, but mostly busied himself with adjusting the straps on his bag again, patting the outside pocket to see if there was anything too strange in it.]

Well, I should be able to pass that, and I don’t think any of my team are secretly stashing guns or anything, so that shouldn’t take too long, right? 

[Ryder grinned at the sight of Marley and her Pokemon jogging happily towards the dock, keeping pace behind her and not wanting to interrupt the moment for them. He did bite his lip warily, though, nudging Pippa in front of him in a cowardly attempt to shield himself from the glare he was getting from Nico. He offered Marley a half-hearted smile as he replied, trying to ignore the dog mon.]

Er, yeah. He seems totally excited about me - er, I mean us! - being here.


A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F


You know, holding a detective up at water gun-point isn’t the smartest thing to do— so don’t get any ideas, okay?

[Marley smiled at Ryder, though she directed her comment at Pippa with a little wink. The penguin was obviously as excited as Ryder to be near the sea. ]

Ah… That’s a good point, I’d forgotten about that part. And, um… I’m sure we’ll find your dad, Ryder. And his pokemon.

[Marley saw the slightly crestfallen expression on Ryder’s expression and chose to keep quiet about it. She didn’t want to bring up something that would make him feel bad. And besides… they would have plenty of time to talk about the past later. If he wanted to, of course. As they neared the fence that separated the dock, Marley rummaged around in her pack for the tickets. Jogging to catch up to him, she held out one of the bright tickets to him.]

Nope, we have individual rooms. Not as fun as a giant camp out, but privacy is nice. And here’s your ticket. We’ll need this to get past him.

[Marley pointed just down the way towards a burly sailor who was examining tickets. Nico had already ran ahead and was sitting next to the sailor, who seemed quite uncomfortable with having a fire Pokemon practically breathing on his heels.]

Um… We may want to hurry. Nico seems impatient.


Can Pokemon go to jail? Because she totally deserves it.

[Ryder laughed and made a face at Pippa as she cooed happily, as if he was expecting her to squirt him with a watergun attack any second.]

Thanks, Marley. I, uh, don’t know if I already said this or not, but thank you. For bringing me along with you, and everything. It means a lot to me.

[He ducked his head somewhat bashfully. Was expressing his thanks getting back into awkward territory? He had no idea. As the minutes passed, it was getting easier, but Ryder still was floundering with figuring out how he should act in Marley’s present. Ryder blinked in surprise when he saw her waving the ticket in front of him, and he reached out to take it from her,careful not to accidentally brush his fingers against hers or anything else that might be awkward.]

Awesome, yeah. D’you think they’re going to do like full body pat downs and all that stuff you see on TV? Because I always have weird medical things in my pockets, and…er, come to think of it, it would be easier to just empty them.

[Ryder made a face, not sure what he was rambling about again. He guessed Marley just made him that nervous after all this time, but hopefully it was something he’d get used to. He picked up the pace, trotting towards the emptying line.]

Wouldn’t want to upset Nico!

[Ryder tried to keep his voice teasing, but ended up sounding maybe a little bit too serious - Marley’s Pokemon still scared him quite a bit. He waved her ahead of him, taking the ‘ladies first’ stance but not speaking it aloud as he watched the fire dog out of the corner of his eyes warily instead.]


A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F


Well, maybe when we have our s’mores cook out, I can show you how it’s done. If you’re lucky, I might even make one for you.

[Marley teased and smiled, this one coming even more naturally than the last one had. Maybe this was what they needed… A chance to get back to acting like normal people. Instead of awkward, avoidant robots like they’d been before.]

A Kingdra would be nice, but I don’t think Sheldon would be as cuddly after he evolved. Mhm, I’m sure Phoebe’s was really something… I’ve heard that Magikarp evolutions are a lot like that, change wise. It’s very shocking.

[Her mind drifted back to Artemis’s own alarming transformation and shook her head a little. It had been years— it was time for her to accept that her little baby bear wasn’t a baby anymore. And, besides, Artemis’s new form had proved quiet useful in the past. She could easily cut through trees with her claws and it had helped many stranded people who were affected by volatile weather.]

What? No, no, that’s not what I meant. I was just saying, we’re going to be on a boat with 2,000 other people— erm, never mind.

[Marley felt her cheeks flush in embarrassment and she decided to keep quiet instead of further embarrass herself. She followed behind Ryder as they neared the port.]


Oh man, don’t get my hopes up! I’m going to have one seriously disappointed stomach if I don’t get one of these perfectly roasted marshmallows now. And I can’t promise Pippa won’t react with a water gun…

[Ryder gave Marley a ridiculous thumbs up, knowing it wasn’t true at all. His little Piplup was totally a traitor and would rather help out Marley than him any day, but she didn’t need to know that. Besides…teasing her like this felt almost normal. He didn’t want to break it up now.]

True…he’s not the cuddliest anyway, though, since he has to be in the water almost all the time. I wish I could see that. My dad had a Gyarados; it was his favorite Pokemon, but it wasn’t a Magikarp at all during my lifetime.

[He furrowed his brows, wondering where his dad’s Pokemon team had ended up when he’d disappeared. It was something he’d thought about on and off for over a decade now, but moments like this he got lost in his own memories and his own questions. Ryder shrugged it off, turning his attention back to the situation at hand instead of living in the past.]

Okay, just making sure! I mean, I assumed everyone had their own rooms and stuff, but I could totally handle it if it was a giant camp out. Worse things have happened.

[Ryder came to a halt as they reached a fence that seemed to block the main road from the dock area. He turned around and waited for Marley, all awkwardness forgotten as he fidgeted and all but bounced at the idea of being on a cruise ship soon. He loved the water, and spending time voyaging on it was something he was looking forward to.]


A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F


I don’t know about that.. The best marshmallows are the ones where they’re golden brown on the outside and nice and gooey on the inside.

[Marley was able to smile when she saw his enthusiasm for the trip— it made her feel a little better. It gave her hope that they’d be able to… move on from their past. Maybe they could never forget the past, but they could learn from it.]

Oh! I should have known that— Day care, duh… But I understand what you mean about the whole evolving thing. It’s a bit of a shock when it happens.

[Marley patted the Pokeball on her hip that housed Artemis. Out of all the evolutions she’d witnessed, both from her own Pokemon and from watching other trainer’s Pokemon evolve, Artemis’ had been the most shocking.]


[She let that particular part of their conversation die as Ryder ran ahead and laughed as he lifted Pippa onto his shoulders. She seemed to be having the time of her life up there.]

It’s a really incredible ship. But, I’m sure your house is much nicer. I mean, you don’t have to share with 2,000 other people there.


You’re the patient s’more maker type then, huh? Those marshmallows are delicious, but I always either want my s’more now, or I mess up and get distracted and it catches on fire anyway.

[Ryder chuckled under his breath, imagining Marley huddled around a fire carefully making sure her marshmallow was perfect. It wasn’t hard to picture - it was weird how even after years of no talking, he still remembered everything about how she looked and sounded. Ryder didn’t want to dwell on that, though - he didn’t want to think what that meant.]

There are a couple I wouldn’t mind evolving - Sheldon being a Kingdra would be cool, or, uh…Squirt being a Lanturn. The coolest one to watch was Phoebe going from a Feebas to a Milotic, though!

[Ryder didn’t have a ton of experience with evolving Pokemon, since it wasn’t like people brought them in to evolve at the Pokemon Center or anything. He still wished he’d been able to see Marley’s reaction to Artemis evolving, since the story made him laugh every time he heard it. He couldn’t imagine that kind of drastic change from any of the rest of his team.]

I’m not sharing a room with 2,000 people, am I?

[Ryder’s eyes widened in shock. The S.S. Anne didn’t just have a bunch of sleeping bags in a dining hall or something, did it? He guessed he could live with that if he had to, but…he trotted ahead, waving over his shoulder for Marley to follow as Pippa clapped gleefully from his shoulders.]

A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F


I’m sure he’d have fun with that. Hopefully they’d be more marshmallow and less torches, but it’d be nice. That sounds great— I’m sure we’ll be able to fit that in on our travels.

[The thought of sugary s’mores didn’t bother her as much as it once would have and she was able to smile at the thought of a nice little camp out. Nico would certainly have a good time— he loved food that he got to light on fire. At the mention of Finn, Marley turned to look at Ryder curiously.]

Finn lives here? I didn’t know that. Well, maybe you’ll be able to see him when we get back.

[Again, there was the change in expression. Was it something shed said? Or done? But his question made her forget about her own curiosity.]

Well, I… Zoey was stationed there before me and I thought it would be a good place to transfer to. Knowing someone ahead of time helps.

[Marley said, trying to avoid the real reason behind why she wanted to be near Zoey. It wasn’t as though she was ashamed of her past with the other woman, she just… didn’t think Ryder would be ready to hear that. Picking up the pace a little, she pointed to the marina.]

There it is! The S.S. Anne. It’s a really pretty ship, don’t you think?


Well, we’d blow the torches out! That’s the best way to make marshmallows. Everyone knows you blacken them on the outside and then they’re all gooey and perfect on the inside.

[Ryder breathed an inward sigh of relief when he noticed Marley smiling. He could do this - he just had to keep telling himself that. He knew he couldn’t erase their history completely, but he could try his best to move past it. He just had to keep reminding himself of that and they could make this work.]

Yeah! They run the daycare…er, somewhere around here. I thought about leaving one of my Pokemon with him while I was away, but I don’t really want any of them to evolve. Plus who knows how long I’ll be gone? I’d miss them too much.

[Plus, that would have meant coming here ahead of time when he knew Kurt was in town, and he just wasn’t ready for that. Kurt had just picked up and left one day, and they’d never sat down and talked about how stupid everything had been. He could only imagine it was even weirder than things with him and Marley right now - at least they’d talked about things and he’d apologized for his mistakes. He was glad when Marley started talking again so he could stop thinking about how dumb his past decisions were.]

That’s good. That you guys got to work together, I mean. Things are always better when you have friends around.

[Ryder didn’t even notice any hesitation on Marley’s end; instead, he bounced on the balls of his feet to get a better view of the pier in the distance, then scooped Pippa up onto his shoulder so she could get a better view.]

Wow…that looks awesome! Way nicer than the ferry I took to the Orange Islands. In fact, it kinda looks like it’s even nicer than my house…

A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F



[He offered Marley two thumbs up and a cheesy, exaggerated smile to try and prove his point to her. Really, he knew that he’d deserve it if Nico lit him on fire, and even if he didn’t, it’s not like an army of water Pokemon weren’t always close by. He blinked his eyes shut for a second as they entered back into the Vemillion sun, then shuffled his feet along as he followed Marley down the path.]

Yeah, I always thought I’d like it a lot. I mean, being so close to the water and all. I talked about visiting, but…uh, it just didn’t pan out.

[Ryder caught sight of a sign pointing to the Pokemon gym and let out a sigh without even meaning to. He hoped Marley hadn’t heard him - things were awkward enough between the two of them without him bringing up the fact that Vemillion was where Kurt and Finn lived. He didn’t even really want to acknowledge that himself; it was part of why he’d made sure to leave at the last second, to avoid any awkward encounters. Well - any extra ones, at least. Ryder fumbled for something to fill the silence he’d created.]

Do they send you here a lot on Police Work? Or does it have, er, a lower crime rate?


[The sound of his laughter, however forced it sounded, made her a little bit more relaxed and she nodded in agreement, a nervous smile on her face. At least he was just as apprehensive about this as she was.]

Well, I still feel bad about it so I won’t talk about it anymore. And also because the idea of a human marshmallow torch sounds kind of terrifying.

[As Marley lead the way to the port, her eyes drifted to the horizon— she was going to get on a ship and sail to Hoenn. After years of thinking that she’d never make it out of Lavender Town, she was headed to Hoenn… Ryder’s words pulled her from her train of thought and she glanced over her shoulder to look at him. Something in his expression had changed. But then it was gone.]

That’s a shame that your plans didn’t work out. It’s a really nice place… Hm? Oh, no. I, um, I stopped doing mobile patrolling work— I was permanently stationed in Saffron over a year ago.

[She said, leaving out her reasons for going from the mobile division to Saffron City Police Department. Ryder didn’t need to hear about that.]


That’s true - I’d much rather recruit Nico to make actual marshmallow torches. Sometime when we’re just outside of a city, and we won’t have to carry supplies for long, I call dibs on making s’mores because no campout is complete without them.

[Ryder knew that he was rambling, but maybe that was what he needed to do. If he talked enough, no matter how random the topic seemed, eventually he’d have to hit on some sort of common ground, right? Besides, he wasn’t lying— the thought of mashmallows had his stomach rumbling and the slightest of grins turning the corners of his lips upward.]

That’s okay. I’m sure I’ll be back someday, you know? It’s not like it’s far from home, and I promised Finn I’d come visit him at the daycare eventually…

[Eventually, when Kurt wasn’t there. It wasn’t that Ryder still had lingering feelings for Kurt—he honestly most days wondered if he’d ever had them at all. It was just another burned bridge, another estranged friend that he didn’t know how to cross paths with, and he had thought he was past thinking about it, but apparently Marley had the effect of bringing up things from the past on him.]

What made you stop, anyway? Patrolling, I mean.

[Ryder was so busy holding Pippa’s fin and squinting at the distant sea — and trying to ignore his own past mistakes — that he didn’t even notice Marley had tried to brush past the subject.]