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

officermarleyrose:

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.

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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.]

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A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F

officermarleyrose:

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.]

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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.]

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A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F

officermarleyrose:

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.]

Mhm…

[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.

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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

officermarleyrose:

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?

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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

officermarleyrose:

 

[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?

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[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.]

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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.]

A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F

officermarleyrose:

Mhm… It should be nice for all of the Pokemon.

[Marley let out a sigh and shook her head— what was she thinking talking about Nico lighting Ryder on fire? Was this really how she wanted to start things off? Oh for the love of Arceus…]

I’m sorry, Ryder, I shouldn’t have said that. I wouldn’t let Nic do something like that. I’m just… To be honest, I’m a little nervous.

[As they followed Nico outside, she noticed that Ryder seemed to lag behind, as though he was afraid of her. Oh no… Fighting against  her nerves, she nodded and pointed out a few buildings.]

That’s okay with me. We’ve had some time to look around, so I know this part of the city fairly well— the local police department is just down that way, the Poke Mart is up that road… It’s a really nice place.

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[Ryder’s eyes trailed back up from the ground to meet Marley’s eyes, trying to read the expression on her face. Even though she was clearly uncomfortable around him, she seemed to feel genuinely bad for what she’d said, and he let out a laugh - strained, but somehow genuine at the same time.]

No, no, don’t worry about it! I think we’re both a little nervous, you know? But I’m totally okay with jokes about me becoming a human marshmallow torch. I promise.

[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?

A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F

officermarleyrose:

[Marley turned to look up at Ryder as he spoke, nervously fiddling with the pokeball still in her hand. Forcing a smile onto her face, she turned her gaze back to their two pokemon instead. It was so much easier to pay attention to them rather than to… him.]

I took a look at some of the information about the boat and there is a pool. The ship also sails slow enough in the day that most pokemon can keep up. It’s only at night does it really pick up speed. So, um, they should be fine.

[Glancing at her backpack on the ground, she picked it up and set it on her lap before looking back up at Ryder.]

You should probably just give it to me. He may just ignore you and set it on fire… Or he’ll eat it and then do it… Those treats are good for fire types because they enhance firepower.

[Blushing at his comment in embarrassment, she stood up and put her pack on. Right. She couldn’t just stay there— they were on a schedule and she had to get moving. She couldn’t let all these feelings get in the way of the investigation. Snapping her fingers, she pointed to the door and Nico obediantly headed out.]

Right. Um, let’s follow Nic. He likes taking point, so I just humor him when we’re in town.

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[Ryder glanced down at his feet, scuffing the toe of his right shoe against the linoleum floor while the Pokemon occupied Marley’s attention. He was doing this all wrong and messing everything up, and he wished he could think of a way to turn things around. His mind came up blank, though, and he decided just to let Pippa take the lead for the time being, until hopefully his nerves settled.]

Oh yeah? That’s awesome! The littler ones love to kind of put on a splash show playing with each other, so that’s why I figured a pool would be good, but I know Phoebe and Batman will probably appreciate the swimming along.

[Ryder gnawed on the inside of his cheek, at a loss for what he could talk about besides just the boat and the Pokemon and the things immediately before them. He wanted to know more about her life, more about her, but he was so afraid to push things. He’d thought time was supposed to heal wounds, but it didn’t seem to be working in this case.]

That’s probably not the best plan. I’m great at healing Pokemon, but I’m not as equipped at healing people…and it’ll be pretty hard to wrap bandages on myself if I’m all crispy.

[Being self-deprecating was all he could do. Ryder knew he’d hurt Marley in the past, and he knew he probably didn’t even deserve to be on this mission with her. He figured it couldn’t hurt to remind her that he was well aware of that, though, as he nodded his agreement. He gestured for Marley to walk ahead of him, partially to put distance between himself and Nico, and partially because she knew the path better than he did.]

I haven’t been here in a while, so I figure it’s best to follow you guys. You’re probably way better with maps and directions than I am anyway.

A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F

officermarleyrose:

[Marley bit her lip nervously at Ryder’s comment— had she done something wrong? She only wanted to make sure Ryder was okay with things. And if Nico was too much for him, she’d be able to manage without her rock to lean on.]

Oh… Okay. That sounds good to me.

[She scratched behind Nico’s horns as they waited for Ryder and she sighed. This was awful. She’d expected things to be weird between them but not this weird. Staring down at Nico, she shook her head.]

I thought I was ready for this, Nic… I really did. But it turns out… I’m not. This was a mistake. This was a huge mistake.

[Marley continued to roll the small pokeball between her fingers, not sure if she hould listen to Ryder or pull Nico back anyways. She was sure that DC would be more than happy to see Pippa and Ryder. Or even Artemis would be happy, though she was a little big… Ollie would probably be more interested in Pippa which would be good, but then she’d have to talk to Ryder more… Ugh, why was this so difficult? Her decision was made for her when Ryder returned with a… very energetic Pippa.]

Oh! Oh boy… You’re just going to be lots of fun, aren’t you?

[Marley smiled and laughed as the penguin nodded it’s head vigorously. Nico seemed amused and, instead of directing his attention back at Ryder, he seemed content to ignore the trainer and focus on the little water pokemon.]

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[The whole time he had been in line Ryder had just been willing himself to breathe normally, to relax, to calm down…anything that would help him not to be a complete disaster around Marley. He knew that so far things weren’t off to a great start, but the last thing he needed was to scare her off before they even got on the boat. Then they’d never be able to find his dad…or make any progress between them, either,]

Just wait until the others get out of the ball to meet her. I figured I’d wait ‘til we were all on the boat to let them out, but I’ve got all water mons for the trip…I hope there’s a pool on board.

[Ryder raised his hands up to rub the back of his neck, keeping a carefully leveled smile on his face. It was straining his cheeks to pretend, but he swore there had been a moment there, where things had been at least kind of normal - he just wanted to get back to that. It was at least a better jumping off point than this was.]

Er, they didn’t have anything really fancy, but I got Nico this treat - Nurse Joy said that it’s especially good for fire treats. He seems sort of distracted with her, though, so maybe we could wait until we’re on board…or, you know, until the next time he looks like he wants to bite me.

[It was an ofhanded comment, but as soon as he said it Ryder wished he hadn’t. He just hoped he didn’t offend Marley; he respected that her Pokemon was just trying to protect his trainer. The brunet quickly tried to brush it off, hoisting his backpack up onto his shoulders again.]

Right. Uh, so, should we get going?

A Rocky Reunion || Ryley F2F

officermarleyrose:

Aww, I’m sure you wouldn’t do that, Pippa. Sometimes boys have to be kept in line, hm? Nico knows that.

[Marley watched as Pippa headed back to Ryder without a problem and couldn’t keep the smile from her face when she looked up at him. It hurt a little less to look at him this time, but the pain was still there. He had been the boy she’d been in love with— the Masquerade had forced her to see that. Dropping her gaze back down to focus on Nico, she shook her head.]

Okay, that sounds good to me. I’ve got plenty of medical supplies in a kit I picked up a while ago. I um… Do you want me to put Nico away? I know he’s not exactly the most welcoming face to see….

[Arceus, why had she even let him out? Even if having Nico made her feel safer, she should have known he would make Ryder uncomfortable. Reaching to her belt, she selected his Pokeball and rolled it in her hand nervously. Nico glanced back at her,a worried expression on his face.]

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[Ryder felt himself tense as Marley spoke to Nico about keeping boys in line; he was just being paranoid, right? That wasn’t a direct jab at him. Marley wasn’t like that. Or at least, the Marley he’d known hadn’t been. Who knew if she was still the same girl he’d been crazy about before now? It was all more overwhelming than he’d planned on it being, and he was suddenly grateful for the long line waiting for the nurse.]

Oh, uh - no, no you don’t have to do that. He’s used to being out, I wouldn’t want you to have to change his routine for me or anything. I’m sure he still won’t like me, but I’ll grab an extra treat for him or something while I’m up there.

[Ryder slunk away, Pippa giving him a disapproving look, but he didn’t know how to act. He’d been so sure this was a good idea, but now he felt awkward, and the memories of just how terribly lost he’d been three years ago were flooding his memory. He kept casting sidelong glances at Marley while he was in line, hoping to see that hint of a smile there again, but things were tense again already, and when his team was finally all taken care of, he let Pippa lead the way back over to their new travelling companions.]

Right, so that should be everything - they just gave her some pep up serum. Back home we just say that’s a fancy word for a Pokemon energy drink, though…

[Ryder chuckled nervously, watching as Pippa bounced in place and waved at Nico and Marley, now more energetic than she’d been earlier. Ryder rolled his eyes, muttering more to himself than actually talking to Marley.]

She should be interesting on a boat…

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