Disclaimer: I own NOTHING! Well, I do own some things, but nothing lawyers would be interested. Detective Brenda Johnson is especially mine- even if her name and career happen to belong to some TV show I've never heard of before- she is most certainly mine.
That said, it's advised that you read/have read Sword and Shield before this. It's not necessary, but it will make more sense if you have, since there are repeated references to what's happened before.
And now, without further ado, the story.
Medea stood at the end of a long line of trainers. Kanto was a lot different from Hoenn. Hoenn didn't have some weird tradition with a torch or a fire that hadn't gone out for hundreds of years. Hoenn didn't have a full day of games and feasts and no pokemon battles just to make the trainers nervous.
She'd beaten the Hoenn league.
Medea Velde, a celebrity back home, a rising star everywhere else. There were more cameras focused on her then anyone else.
She knew her fellow trainers noticed.
She was eighteen now, and had replaced two pokemon of her team. The replaced had been old, weaker and slower. The new pokemon weren't as strong, but they covered a weakness she'd had since the beginning of her training days.
Medea smiled for the cameras, wishing she was back home. Wishing that she had never won Hoenn's pokemon league Championship.
She shivered suddenly. Her mother would have said that someone had just walked over her grave. Medea wasn't superstitious; all she thought was that someone had let a ghost type out.
The announcer made the closing remarks. Medea blinked, and looked around guiltily. She hadn't been paying attention to what was being said. The other trainers all looked like they had memorized the speech.
Well, for them, this was pretty special. For Medea, this was just another tournament. If she lost here, she'd retire. It was as simple as that.
The camera lenses pointed in her direction were gleaming. Medea was used to them, to the way reporters all tried to talk over each other and be the only one to get her attention. They'd been worse in Hoenn, where they were all Hoenn reporters.
She was calm when she began walking towards the field exit, towards the reporters. They were already starting to ask her questions and she wasn't halfway to them.
Medea smiled, politely, and looked them over. Her personal stalkers from Hoenn were waiting for her. Gabby was smiling, not talking yet, and Ty was being his usual mute-seeming self.
Medea walked towards them. "Hey," she said, nodding to Gabby. She made sure to keep her voice down, so that the other reporters couldn't hear. Let them harass the other trainers. Medea hadn't wanted to be famous, and Gabby was a nice interviewer.
"Hey, Medea. You know the drill."
Medea nodded, and turned to face the camera. Ty held up three fingers, two, and at one Gabby started talking.
"Hello, I'm Gabby Taylor for Channel 9 news. I'm speaking to you know from the Kanto pokemon league field with Medea Velde. Medea, how are you feeling right now?"
Medea smiled, calmly. "I'm feeling very confident, Gabby." Being interviewed by Gabby was easy. "I don't foresee any problems in the preliminary rounds."
Medea rubbed the back of her neck and started up the stairs. It had been a long day. She was known; she couldn't just leave during the festivities. Little known trainers or trainers who'd never been heard of before could. They could go, hide in their hotel rooms, and take a shower, whatever.
Medea had been dragged around the fair grounds by Gabby. It hadn't been a bad experience, but Medea just wanted to be left alone.
Medea looked up, already opening her mouth to respond.
She was pushed backwards. Down the stairs. She screamed.
Brenda was whistling. This was her last visit to the damn hospital. Her last check up, the last time someone in a white lab coat would poke and prod and ask how she was.
Freedom was a nice feeling.
She got into her car and flipped on the radio for the noise. She frowned a little and glanced at the passenger seat. Two months ago, the fact that it was empty wouldn't have bothered her. Now, it was an irritating reminder that she had a partner.
He was a good partner, at least. Smart, didn't ask too many questions, and was getting the hang of brewing coffee.
Mewtwo certainly wasn't a pain in the ass any more, except when he was.
Thinking of Mewtwo, Brenda thought she should call him. He'd be at her place, probably on the computer. Rewarding himself for all the hard work he'd put in.
Brenda grinned. She could just see it; Mewtwo hunched over the keyboard, staring at the screen, on the edge of his seat so he wouldn't sit on his tail. He'd need a break or he'd start getting stiff.
Brenda considered her radio, and snorted. Like she wanted this conversation on police channels.
Mewtwo had said he could hear her, wherever she was in the city. Brenda didn't trust her ability to 'project'- his word- her thoughts to his mind.
So she called him on her cell phone.
Mewtwo picked up on the second ring. (Detective?)
Brenda frowned. "Did you just leave the phone hanging in mid air again?"
(What? Detective, what are you talking about?)
Brenda rolled her eyes. Why did she have to explain everything? "Last time you answered the phone and did the freaky mind-voice thing, you just left the phone hanging in mid air by the hook. Don't do that."
(How is that a problem? I am a psychic, I can hear your voice coming from the phone as it is-)
"What happens if someone looks in the window, dumbass?"
There was a pause, in which Brenda heard the satisfying sound of the phone hitting the nearest flat object. Probably the floor, but she wasn't feeling very picky. She'd work up to his actually having the phone within five feet of him.
(The phone is on an end table, Detective. Better?)
"Much," Brenda said, thinking. Did she even have an end table?
(Is there a reason for this call?)
"I need a reason to harass you?" Brenda swerved around an accident waiting to happen. The driver of the blue van was fixing her lipstick. "Actually, I wanted to gloat."
"Last visit to the torture chamber," Brenda said.
(Ah. No more hospital checkups?)
"Nope!" Brenda grinned. "They just gave me a bunch of suggestions. I like swimming. I always do stretches. Moisturizer is easy to remember when it looks like some kid made my leg out of play-doh."
(…I didn't need to hear about the moisturizer.)
"Does the psychic kitty have a problem with discussing the human body?" Brenda cooed.
"Really," Brenda drawled. "Sure, I believe you. You look terrified right now for some other reason, I'm sure."
(How do you know what I look like?)
She grinned. "I know you. Whenever Alison comes up you look like you're haunted. Or terrified. It depends on whether I'm thinking of inviting her over for a week."
(Please don't joke about that. Please.)
(On that line, you did mail her your letter, didn't you?)
"Yup. On my way to torture."
(It's just a hospital.)
"It's a torture chamber. They've got needles, make you do things that hurt, and drug you. Torture."
Mewtwo sighed. (Very well, Detective. Torture chamber.)
"Glad you agree with me. I'm thinking about stopping for a pizza. Veggie for you?"
(Yes, please. I'm glad you finally have a bill of perfect health, Detective. Does this mean I can stop running after the suspects now?)
"Why stop a good thing?" Brenda asked, flipping her turn signal. "Anyways, I'm not supposed to run for a week."
Mewtwo sighed again. It was starting to get on Brenda's nerves. (Very well. I await your return with pizza.)
"Yeah, yeah." Brenda turned off the phone and tossed it on the passenger seat.
Brenda parked her car and rubbed her leg. Sometimes she thought it was supposed to hurt, but it didn't. She was supposed to be thankful for that, and didn't admit that it made her uneasy.
Burns were supposed to hurt.
Brenda shook her head and locked the car. She looked up at the sky and frowned. There were dark clouds building on the horizon. It would probably rain sometime that night.
Fifteen minutes Brenda had the pizza and was driving home. Paul's Pizza tended to keep the non-specialty orders already made and waiting in a heater. All Brenda really had to do was order, accept her order, and pay.
Rain was beginning to fall. Brenda ignored the fact that one of her windshield wipers appeared to be broken. The driver's side of the window was kept more or less clear.
She listened with half a mind to the police radio. There was nothing but static played over some sugar-pop music. Brenda rolled her eyes at herself. Layering the ordinary car radio over the police radio was just asking for a headache.
She reached her home without incident, or hearing anything on the police radio. She turned off the car with relief, and carried the pizza inside.
Rhonwen met her at the door, sniffing at Brenda's leg and then looking up at Brenda's face. Apparently satisfied, the houndoom left Brenda.
Brenda watched Rhonwen leave, and then looked over at the computer. As she expected, Mewtwo was seated in front of the computer screen, hunched over. It was mildly disturbing to see the keyboard keys move without fingers pressing on them, but Brenda was getting used to it.
Getting used to something a psychic did. Now there was a scary thought.
"You only get pizza if you leave the computer," Brenda said.
Mewtwo looked over his shoulder and glared. (Oh, very well.)
"I still think you should try the three cheese pizza. It wouldn't offend your vegetarian mentality at all." Brenda pulled her chair from the kitchen table with one foot, and held out Mewtwo's pizza.
Her bastard, though, which made it bearable.
Brenda realized that Mewtwo was regarding her oddly, and she glared back. Had she been projecting again? Damn bastard should keep from looking at her thoughts.
(You're very quiet tonight, Detective.)
Brenda relaxed slightly. "Well, let's see. To date, we've been mopping up what's left of Team Rocket- not exactly a strenuous job, when you get right down to it- and other then that, nothing. No excitement."
(Investigating murders is excitement?)
"That isn't what I meant and you know it. I just… I don't know." Brenda frowned, and bit into her pizza. Once she'd swallowed, she continued. "It's just this weird restless feeling. I think we'll have work tomorrow. People will use any excuse to murder, and with the weather like this, we'll be run ragged."
(If you say so.) Mewtwo completed his third slice of pizza, and started on the fourth. Brenda just rolled her eyes.
Uppity psychics, able to eat and talk at the same time… Damn them.
Brenda looked up. She had been eyeing a houseplant Mewtwo had conned her into getting. It was very healthy, very green, and on her desk.
She wasn't sure she was going to be able to stand looking at something so- alive and cheerful.
Officer Doyle clasped his hands behind his back. "You're wanted to go to the pokemon league. There's been a murder."
"Well, damn." Brenda stood up and snapped her fingers at Officer Smith. "We're going."
"Yes, sir." Officer Smith stood up, and followed Brenda down the hall towards the garage.
(Do you even know where in the pokemon league we have to go?)
"Nope," Brenda muttered. She sounded cheerful when she added, "This way I get to piss off a couple officials in order to find out."
Mewtwo chuckled, and pretended to be studying the ceiling when she glanced over at him.
Brenda folded her arms, and glared at the security guard. "I don't think you understand," she said. "I'm expected."
"I called in," The guard said back. "They aren't expecting a Johnson. Now get going before I run you off."
Brenda smiled, as sweetly as she could, before pulling her badge. "No, I really am expected. Now why don't you run along and find a dead body, hm? I've been told there's one around here somewhere."
The guard's eyes bulged, but he saluted and left. Brenda watched him go, dropping her badge back into her pocket.
(You could have let me take care of him,) Mewtwo said.
Brenda glanced around. She couldn't see him, but that was no surprise. Physically, he was nowhere near her. 'And ruin my fun?' she thought, trying to project.
Apparently, she managed it. (There is no need to shout,) he said. (And it would have been fun for me.)
Brenda smiled at the silence, and knocked on a large, red door. There was a plaque reading 'General Management'. General management, in Brenda's opinion, knew everything that was going on and had no power to do anything about it.
The appearance of a police officer would either delight or horrify the person behind the door.
Brenda was hoping for horrified.
Mewtwo crouched in an out of the way corner- on the roof- and glared down at the battle fields.
This was what he'd been created for. Battle, for the glory of human masters, so that the humans could profit and he would get- nothing. Less then nothing, for the pokemon on the field at least had empty praises when they won. He, on the other hand, would be put away until it was time to fight again.
Oh, grow up, a mental voice told him. It sounded suspiciously like the Detective.
He shifted, suddenly uncomfortable hiding away. Yes, there were humans down there, trainers, who would want to catch him for their slavery. He could fight them, or he could use his illusion to look like one of them. Except for the fact that the humans were packed together cheek by jowl, and while he could make them all believe he appeared human, with this many minds to- adjust- he couldn't make them believe he felt human.
Thus why he was hiding on the roof, he supposed.
He clenched his jaw and began sifting through the minds below for information. The Detective would most likely disapprove of any action, but the sooner they found the killer, the sooner he would be able to leave the pokemon league.
He recoiled when he realized that any of the humans could have killed. The trainers especially thought violently towards their opponents.
'-break its leg and he'll be out one-'
'-twist his dick off and make him eat-'
'-how dare he how dare he how-'
Mewtwo stopped sifting through the minds and shuddered. They could not find the killer that way.
(Here,) he sent, relieved to sense the Detective's unique mental signature. Feeling like he was being torn to pieces on her mental defenses was preferable to feeling like he was wading through sludge. Humans were disgusting, violent minded brutes. The Detective was only slightly better. (Do you know where we must go?)
'Yes,' the Detective thought. Mewtwo caught other thoughts- a string of swear words, contemplation on whether or not to kick the fat man out of her way, and her own irritation with all things psychic- and ignored them. They didn't matter. 'Meet me at the residential building as soon as I find it.'
Mewtwo looked around from his perch, and looked back down towards the Detective. He couldn't see her in the crush of people, but he did know where she was. (If you turn- left, I believe- and go straight, you'll just have to walk to the end of the street.)
The Detective didn't project any thanks to him. He hadn't expected her to.
He teleported to the roof of the residential building, and waited. The Detective was still several minutes away. He didn't have to go down to the streets just yet.
He didn't want to have to see her, to use his illusion to appear human.
He had no choice.
Mewtwo teleported to the street, his illusion in place. The Detective glanced at him, one eyebrow quirking upwards in some indecipherable emotion. Mewtwo looked away, his tail lashing unseen behind him.
"Let's go," he said.
"Sure," the Detective replied. "Third floor, room 398."
Mewtwo nodded and led the way. The briefest of touches to one of the many security guards' mind told him how to get to room 398.
The ride upwards in the elevator was silent and awkward. Mewtwo stared into the mirrored wall. The Detective, he knew, would see his illusion. All he could see was himself.
"I don't like pokemon training much either," the Detective said.
Mewtwo nearly wrenched his neck, looking over at her so quickly. (What?)
The Detective stared back at him. "It's slavery," she said.
"By this point, I think you can call me Brenda."
Mewtwo bowed his head, and looked at the mirror again. He didn't know what to say. He didn't know what to do.
The Detective did seem to enjoy keeping him off balance.
"Well, here we are. Third floor, and it's straight ahead to the murder room."
Mewtwo shook his head and followed. At this point, he figured, there was nothing much else he could do.
Except stand for the dead, as the Detective did.