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Chapter 5: The Painted Smeargle


I just thought that I’d let you know
That although I’m far, I’m close to you within
And all the time spent with you by your side
Is a taken deep in me

Held for me to keep to look upon when I feel like
Everything and one is hurting me for something or other.
It takes me to a better place.
Where I’d rather go.

I thought I’d let you know....

Who you are! What you do!
Makes me burn to be in you!
Who you are! What you do!
I’m burning to be in you!

I just thought I’d let you know....
Being near you is a gift I only wish I could treasure!
But, for now I’ll just sit and wait
I’m still burning though....

I thought I’d let you know....
It feels like I’m falling.
I’m all on my own!

I thought I’d let you know....

Who you are! What you do!
Makes me burn to be in you!
Who you are! What you do!
I’m burning to be in you!
-Hoobastank, Let You Know


*Edited by JLB*

He watched the sky grow dark. He didn't even realize how late it had gotten as they sat talking, watching he pond. He had enjoyed this day beyond words. He stood watching the fiery colors overtaking the sky.

"It's getting late. We should get back before dark." He studied the sunset a few more seconds before he turned to her, offered his hand once more.

Azura kept staring at the sunset. She had had the best day. She loved spending time with Lupaul. She finally noticed he was holding his hand out to her. She smiled and took his hand.

"I've had the best day Lupaul, thank you for showing me this place."

"It was a pleasure to show you." Lupaul smiled, he was glad she had enjoyed the pond.

He thought he heard something. A rustling in the bushes. He tried to hear what it was. Lupaul turned toward the sound, there was a small voice out there.

The little calf struggled, she was so tired. Climbing over the ridge, walking so far and she knew mama wasn't anywhere in sight. She mooed and lay in the grass. The horrible things she heard, had seen and ran from. The monsters had taken the herd away. She cried for help again.

"You hear that?" Lupaul tried to fix on where it was coming from.

Lupaul leaned through the bushes, Azura stood behind him, watching over his shoulder. The little calf was lying in grass mooing softly. Azura stepped forward.

"Oh, it's a baby, I wonder where its mother is!" She kneeled down next to it. It moved away in fight, mooing in a distressed manner. "Oh it's ok." Azura moved slowly forward, whispering 'its ok' and other things lightly.

"I'm wondering the same thing. Too young to be on her own." Lupaul studied the little miltank. "Where are you from?"

He asked though he knew he would get no answer, it looked too young to speak yet. He wondered how such a small miltank got out here alone.

"Her herd has to be somewhere around here." Lupaul rubbed his chin, he didn't want to say it to Azura but, for some reason this miltank seemed afraid of smeargles. But, why?

No matter how Azura tried she couldn't get the baby miltank to come to her. She decided to try the cruel, but effective, tricking it technique. She turned around to Lupaul.

"Lupaul, can you paint my face like a miltanks? It won't come near me otherwise, it seems to be afraid of me, maybe it'll feel better if i look like a miltank." she giggled a little, "Well, a little like a miltank."

"Ummm sure." He held his tail and studied her face. It was such a shame to paint over that lovely face but, that's what she wanted. He stood back, he thought he did an alright job as he studied her.

"Well let's see what happens." He gave shrugged his shoulders.

She turned around to face the shaking miltank calf. She came forward slightly, whispering how everything would be alright and how it wouldn't have to be afraid. The miltank calf was confused. At first she had thought they were two like the other monsters but now one looked almost like a miltank, was this just another trick? She just wanted her mother. Azura put her paw on the shaking calf's head. She stroked it gently.

"There, it'll be ok now..."

"Well she's seems to have calmed down a little. We better let Chari know about this, maybe the scouts can look for her herd or something. There is no way she would be out here alone this young." Lupaul studied the baby.

The calf calmed down enough for Azura to pick it up. It was tired, scared, and just wanted its mother. Azura placed a paw under the little calf's bottom to stop it from falling.

"Maybe we should take it back to the Moonhall or the main hall. The herd may have been coming into the valley and just lost this little once." Azura said looking over the baby to see Lupaul.

"That could be it. You're right. Chari and the others would know what to do." He walked alongside as they made their way to the caves.

They reached the caves and headed straight for the Grand Hall.

"I hope Kanga and Chari are around. I'm sure Kanga will know what to do, she has a child of her own right?" Azura knew that miltanks were not the same as other pokémon but all young pokémon must have something in common.

The calf nuzzled closer to Azura. The caves were scary and she didn't know where they were going. She mooed quietly with tears in her little eyes.

"Kanga! Of course! You know they say Kangaskahn are the parent type pokémon. Besides it wouldn't hurt for our medicine doe to look that calf over in case she might be hurt." Lupaul nodded as he spoke. There was definitely help to be taken.

*****

Loki was about to tell her, tell all the horrid news about Juna. He lifted an ear. He heard voices. It sounded like Lupaul and a female smeargle. That sounded a lot like Azura.

Kanga was the first to hear it, a baby's moo. She stood and cocked her ears toward the sound.

"Is that un miltank calf?" She heard another soft moo.

"Sounds like it." Loki wondered what the smeargles would be doing with a calf?

Azura and Lupaul came into the hall. Azura smiled at Loki and Kanga then blushed as she remembered she had her face painted like a miltank.

"Kanga, Chari, we found this calf in the fields. We were wondering if a herd or another miltank had come in, this ones too young to be alone.." Azura held the calf up a little, it started shaking when it saw the other pokémon here. big yellow ones and another big black one.

Chari smiled, it wasn't everyday you met a smeargle with a miltank face. He chuckled before he could speak again.

"Well I see you've been making her feel at home." He turned to Kanga. "I don't recall any miltanks or tauros come today how about you?"

"No-suh, Kanga no hear'rrren about it either-suh." She smiled at the baby. Kanga just loved babies. "Thisen calf isen very young-suh. Yose right, not old enough to be alone-suh."

The things Kanga had learned during this time in the valley! One day she would pass it all down to Amphion so he would be a healer, a medicine buck one day. Amphion watched from his mother's pouch. A new baby?

Nossy giggled at the sight of the smeargles and the baby. Such an odd situation. She stepped next to Chari and just stood aside while the others handled it. They would know more than her, a wandering ewe.

Azura blushed deeply when Chari laughed and even deeper when Nossy giggled. She felt quite silly for having her face painted in from of the “King” of the valley but it was all for the baby's sake.

"If no other miltanks have come into the valley then this little one must be lost, or an orphan." Azura said sadly.

The calf hugged closer to Azura's stomach then caught sight of Amphion. She looked over to the other youngling and mooed lightly.

"Ammmmmp!" Amphion giggled from the pouch.

"She looken fine-suh. But, she gonna be needen mother-suh ifen we-suh no finden her real un. She can't be eaten solids yet-suh." Kanga studied the young baby. "She would still be drinken milk-suh."

The little calf smiled slightly and mooed again to Amphion. Azura smiled down at the little one. She would have gladly taken her as an adoptive child but she didn't have the milk the baby miltank would need.

"Well, there are miltanks in the valley, i guess we could ask them." Azura suggested half-heartedly. The little calf looked up and Azura and mooed quietly.

"That seems to be the only thing that can really be done till we find her real mother." Lupaul agreed.

"There are a few I can think of with calf already. They would gladly take care of her." Chari smiled, such a cute little one.

He had his hands full raising Norrie alone and watching little Cronk and even Amphion was often around him. He was a busy male with many things to do!

"Well-suh...ifen Dori don't mind-suh..." Kanga grinned, she wouldn't mind one bit raising another baby.

"You want her Kanga?" Dori was a bit unsure of it but, he had been trying to help raise Amphion and even then Loki was often taking over that duty. What would be the harm in another baby? He watched his mate nod. "Well I guess we could take her in, watch her till her real mother is found."

"Good! You're growing up Dori! I still remember you as a lamb and sometimes...I still think of you that way. You'll be a fine ram in this valley my son!" Loki proudly watched Dori as the little ram smiled.

"It is hard to believe that he's the little lamb I saw so long ago. You are very loving the two of you. I’m so glad for you both Kanga and Dori." Nysokatta sighed, they would make a most wonderful family. She had been thinking a lot about families recently. Was that why she came back?

Azura stepped forward to hand the little lamb over. It was typical of her to get attached to it when there was no chance of her keeping the little one, still...She looked down and it.

"Err, Kanga…would, would it be alright if I named her?" She blushed an kept staring downwards.

"Go ahead-suh, we be needen to call her something-suh." Kanga grinned as she took the baby. "Such a cute little un."

Amphion cooed from his perch and looked up towards the little miltank.

Azura smiled and looked at the little calf.

"I think she should be called..." she searched her mind for a name. "Tawnie!" She said finally. She handed the little miltank over to Kanga.

"Tawnie. That sounden liken good name-suh." Kanga grinned and held the baby close. She lightly spoke to her as she tickled the baby's belly.

"She's very cute." Dori smiled as he watched his mate play with the calf.

"Oh, such a sweet looking baby." Rufus laughed. He stood taller than most sneasals, though under his pelt you could barely tell he was a sneasal. "Kanga! How've you been?"

"Oh! Rufus you're back-suh!" She grinned, if her hands handed been full she would have hugged her old friend.

"Rufus how do you get in here without me knowing?" Loki looked down at the sneasal.

"I'm the King Of Thieves of course you wouldn't hear me coming!" Rufus laughed again.

"Why are you friends with a sneasal Chari?" Nossy was shocked.

Azura wiped some of the pink paint from her face and stared at the sneasal that had seemingly just appeared next to them. Tawnie was still giggling until Rufus appeared beside the others. A sneasal!!! Her mother and father had been attacked by those! She mooed in terror and hugged close to Kanga.

"Oh, Tawnie's afraid!" Azura cried.

Kanga held the little miltank. She sang softly and rocked her.

"I'm sorry Rufus-suh she isen fussy right now-suh. Me-suh comen see yose after she settle down-suh." Kanga apologized as she cradled the infant. "Oh Tawnie yose must be sleepy-suh. It isen getten late-suh."

"It's alright Kanga. Catch up with you later." Rufus grinned and sat on a ledge, he was so agile leaping on to it.

"Chari? Why is there a sneasal here?" Nossy asked again.

"Rufus is a friend. He steals things we need from humans. He is harmless Nossy." Loki rubbed her shoulder. "Honestly I have come to trust him."

Lupaul didn't trust sneasals. He just never really did nor would. He stood closer to Azura. He eyed Rufus. The dark type had never done anything to doubt Loki but, Lupaul just didn't trust them.

"Rufus, we got the grain all'a gathered and in the storage cave'a." Lucca reported proudly as he stepped into the Grand Hall.

"Good! now get Dintar and Rain all sititated and we will retire for the evening." Rufus whispered to Lucca.

"Oh! yes boss'a we do that and we will be getting ready'a to retire then." Lucca nodded.

"I'm going to wash this paint from my face Lupaul, then I guess I’ll retreat to my cave ok?" Azura looked down at her hand. She still had a pink face. She leaned over to Lupaul. She said quietly.

"That's okay. I'm going to turn in myself soon." He grinned. "When can I see you again?"

*****

Rufus felt unwanted around here. He shrugged it off as he usually did. Loki felt it, he knew Lupaul was not thrilled to have the sneasals around. Loki trusted Rufus, the sneasal brought essential grain, sometimes hay, sometimes bags of feed that helped feed the various pokémon here, and all he asked for were the simple things. Shelter, a place to call home.

Rufus seemed to like the gems and other stones they found while creating new caves and Loki didn't mind letting the sneasal keep them since they were no use to him.

"Well Rufus I guess you must be very tired why don't you just go ahead and retire." Dori snorted.

"Not without some pay." Rufus grunted at the flaaffy.

"What you don't trust us to pay you tomorrow?" Dori crossed his flippers.

"I trust Chari, not you! You wanna be a smart mouth I'll demand my reward now." Rufus growled.

"Enough! You know me Rufus. It's waiting in your cave." Loki chuckled. "We found some more gems they're all yours."

"Sounds good." Rufus nodded and whispered something to his companion before they left.

Azura smiled, "We can meet tomorrow night in the Moonhall or sometime earlier if you can find me." She grinned in a kind of playful way. She waved to the others.

"Goodnight all." She smiled and walked away to find somewhere to wipe the paint from her face.

Tawnie cuddled up to Kanga. No matter how scary she looked she was very nice, yes very nice! Tawnie felt her eyelids closing. She mooed a little in protest.

Till tomorrow then! He smiled, was this real? She was the most perfect girl he ever saw so was she really interested in him? He made his good nights as well before he left for his cave.

Kanga grinned, it was nice to have another baby around. She held Tawnie and Amphion close. She found Norrie still lightly sleeping. Cronk sat by her. He was trying to stay awake but, Kanga could tell he was ready to nod off for good.

She would tell Loki to just leave them here for tonight. She didn't mind at all. Anyways why wake them so they would walk ten feet over to Loki's cave? She was more than sure Dori wouldn't mind.

She settled down near them all. Amphion baaed in a sleepy voice. Kanga licked his little cheek. She felt him cuddle up next to her big head. She realized how sleepy she was herself.

Tawnie was confused again. She looked around, there were so many babies, so many pokémon. Her eyes felt heavy, very heavy. she felt safe here, but where was her mother, she hope her mother would come back soon. She mooed for her mother then fell to sleep.

Dori excused himself from the meeting. He didn't trust those sneasals like his uncle. Chari kept strange company. Dori would have none of it. He just wanted to get to Kanga.

There she was, with little babies surrounding her. He rolled his eyes. She would have to learn she couldn't raise every lost baby in the valley. He found himself a place near her. He curled up against her flank.

His eyes opened. One was still up and making noises. He waited, Kanga stirred, she nuzzled little Tawnie till she quieted down. Dori was tempted to say something yet, he knew she just loved babies. He tried to sleep again.

*****

“Chari? What were you going to tell me before?” Nysokatta began to suspect something was wrong. She had yet to see Juna.

“Well, Nossy. You’ve come back to us and all I have is bad news. Nossy…Juna…”

She watched the darkened mood in his eyes. He had often cheery eyes, he was often so happy. The sudden change in his face scared her. Juna? He was going to say something about Juna. The flaaffy threw her arms around him, she knew something horrible had happened. It was all in his eyes.

He held her and he found the way to open up to her, he spoke of the tragedy that just struck the valley. He held her as she cried. He found it hard for him to speak of it but, he had to, Nossy had the right to know. Her sister had been taken away.

To be Continued............

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