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Scaldaver
7th January 2012, 6:41 PM
Every story has an ending. Nothing lasts forever. Not any more.

Hey, this is my Fanfic. Please post if you like it so I can get more motivated to write more chapters. Chapters may be uploaded with slight few days delay, more if I have too much work. Please know that, as my first attempt, it is a bit short for a first chapter, but I hope for there to be many, many chapters, that will get progressively longer. Consider this a first taste. Feel free to point out mistakes and speculate. Enjoy.

It is important to know that, although it start moderately slow, it DOES pick up in the second chapter (With something most people find pretty shocking).

Also, please know that, although my reply to criticism was bordering on cruel when I first wrote this (as I honestly thought people were being cruel to me at the time), I have since grown out of those tendencies and will make the corrections and thank you.

Note: This fanfiction takes place in a separate Pokemon universe. In this, all legendary Pokemon are unique, they are all genderless (with the exception of Lati@s) and all events from the Pokemon games and Anime including legendary Pokemon did not happen. As well as this, I am not giving main character description - feel free to come up with those yourself. Model them after your imagination. Furthermore, at the beggining of each chapter I will give the age rating, as there is different content in each chapter. This one is suitable for all viewers.


T-Bolt,
Deadly.Braviary,
Rotomknight,
C.Gholy,
Chimpchar,
Dragonfree,
Donphan Dude,
overlordmewtwo,
Sidewinder,
Kutie Pie,
Arbok4Ever,
TheDarkKnightFalls.


Chapters:
Chapter 1 - Choice (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=13985014&postcount=1)
Chapter 2 - Battle (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14016201&postcount=4)
Chapter 3 - Storm (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14042957&postcount=11)
Chapter 4 - Travel (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14080629&postcount=18)
Chapter 5 - Zubat (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14112913&postcount=21)
Chapter 6 - Gym Battle (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14243022&postcount=24)
Chapter 7 - The Serpent of the Sea (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14283061&postcount=31)
Chapter 8 - Lost Memories, Part 1 (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14358810&postcount=45)
Chapter 9 - Lost Memories, Part 2 (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14362182&postcount=49)
Chapter -10 - The April Fool's Chapter That Never Was (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14363443&postcount=52)
Chapter 10 - Abandonment (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14403672&postcount=62)
Chapter 11 - Damned (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14669021&postcount=76)
Chapter 12 - Gym Battle Two (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14737065&postcount=86)
Chapter 13 - Duped (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14846621&postcount=96)
Chapter 14 - Regice (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14961712&postcount=106)
Chapter 15 - The Guardian (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=15399194#postcount=117)
Chapter 16 - Fragility (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=15425729#postcount=120)
Chapter 17 - Battles (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=15707040#postcount=125)
Chapter 18 - The Companion (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=15758619#postcount=135)
Chapter 19 - Research (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=16122681#postcount=140)
Chapter 20 - Intervention (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=16750878#postcount=144)
Chapter 21 - Legends (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=16766430#postcount=147)


Prologue

The gargantuan creature opened its eyes, a hollow ring of molten gold glowing in the darkness of its home. It knew it was close. It knew its breaths were numbered.

“Show yourself,” the monster growled, shaking the stalactites precariously with its deep, ancient voice.

A figure fell from the ceiling of the cavern, gracefully, and came to rest a few feet from the warm stone floor. It surveyed its prey with an indifferent glance, as though impatient for its job to be completed. The recently awakened behemoth closed its eyes and sagged its head.

“I have known... of your coming.” The monster spoke slowly but fiercely, savouring its final moments of life. “I know... of your goal. I know... I cannot beat you.” The creature shot its eyes wide open, snapped its head back and roared, producing a blast so powerful that dust and stalactites fell from the ceiling. The assailant didn't even blink.

“But I'm not going down without a fight! I will bide the others time! And together,” it roared again, splitting the rock and causing earthquakes for miles around its subterranean cove, strange markings in the chinks of its armour illuminating the area a bright blue, “they will avenge me!”

With that the chamber began to collapse, rocks and dust removing all visibility. The battle began.

***

Chapter 1
Choice

Three Pokemon looked up expectantly at the boy in the forest clearing. The one to his left resembled some sort of tiny dinosaur, light green skin with very rounded limbs. Around the base of the elongated head were small green beads winding around it like a necklace. Upon the head a large leaf hung on a stalk, just above the large red eyes. Below its featureless body were four featureless legs, each ending with a small, white claw. A small tail protruded from its behind, waving gently from side to side. This was a Chikorita, the leaf Pokemon. It stood calmly, its leaf waving gently in the cool breeze and, to all intents and purposes, looking pretty bored with the whole ordeal.

Beside it was a small bird that resembled an orange chicken. Its bulbous head, which rested on a small round body, contained few features, most predominately a small cream beak, two blue shining eyes, and three yellow tipped feathers sticking up on top. Below its head, small wing-like limbs protruded from the top of its body. Below, two cream-coloured stick-like legs connected to scrawny chicken feet stuck out; it carried most of its weight on only one, the other slightly bent backward in the air. This was Torchic, the chick Pokemon.

To the right of the boy stood a blue dog-like Pokemon. Instead of a tail, however, a large pale blue fin stood vertical against its backside. It had a light, marine blue back, but a pale blue underbelly. It had four short legs, each with three undefined toes at the end. Upon its large head stood another vertical fin, the same colour as the blue head. Each cheek had a strange orange star-shaped gill that slowly inflated and deflated. The boy was surprised when he didn't see any eyes, but they were prised shut. The creature was also quietly murmuring to itself:

“Mud, mud, kip, kip,” which translated as, if the boy's lessons in Pokemon communication were anything to go by, “Please pick me, please pick me.”

The boy smiled. Anticipation glowed within him.

Behind him, the girl yawned loudly.

“You picked yet, Edward?" she called over. "Some of us are growing old you know."

Edward grinned. She knew that Nuria was only kidding, but he did realise he'd been staring at them for quite a while. And he had made his decision. He turned his back on the starter Pokemon and faced the professor and Nuria. His friend sighed with relief.

“Finally.” She checked her watch, raising her eyebrows. Edward ignored her.

“Have you made your selection?” Professor Birch asked. Edward nodded, grinning uncontrollably. “And you, Nuria?”

“Aaaages ago,” Nuria yawned, catching Edward's eye and winked.

“Once again, I'm sorry we didn't have a spare Treecko; we just ran out and it was lucky Elm could give us the Chikorita. If either of you wanted Treecko, we could wait a few more days. Are you sure you don't want one?”

“I'm sure,” they both replied at the same time. Nuria's voice rang with boredom at the question. Edward grinned as he remembered how they always talked about their starter Pokemon: which one they'd get. Most of these conversations lead to Nuria ranting about how ugly and bug-eyed Treecko was. Edward didn't like them much either, but couldn't quite see what all the fuss was about.

“Okay,” Birch continued, exhaling in relief. “Nuria, you chose first, so which do you want to be your companion?”

“Chikorita,” she said almost immediately, determined. Her eyes burned, as though threatening the professor to argue with her. Birch nodded.

“I thought as much.” He turned to Edward. “And you?”

Edward cast his eyes over to the Mudkip. Its eyes were even more screwed up. He laughed again. The past thirteen years had been building up to this. He didn't know if he could talk with all the excitement.

“I'd like the Mudkip, please,” he said, loud enough so the Mudkip could overhear. Immediately the mud fish Pokemon leapt up and ran straight at Edward; before he could dodge or jump out of the way, the Mudkip was upon his feet, nearly sobbing and crying out, muttering, in his own speech: “Thank you! Thank you so much! You won't regret this! Thank-”

As Mudkip expressed his gratitude, Edward's face lit up. As excitement and joy filled him entirely, Birch leaned over and handed him a small red and white sphere while Nuria giggled behind him. Mudkip's pokeball. Edward took the ball and held it toward Mudkip, causing the blue dog-fish to turn into red plasma and withdraw into the ball. Birch grinned apologetically.

“You've got to be good to him. He's been waiting his whole life to be selected. It means a lot to him.” He then turned back to Nuria. “And here's Chikorita's ball.”

With a brief mutter of thanks, Nuria took the ball and held it toward her new Chikorita. It too turned into a hazy red plasma and flew into the ball. All that was left was the Torchic, looking a bit downtrodden. Birch held up its withdrew it too, and looked apologetically at the sphere; he muttered - “Don't worry. Your time will come." As though being drawn out of a dream, the professor looked towards the teens again. "Now, without further ado,” he said as he reached into his pocket, bringing out two small, metallic rectangles; one pink, one blue. Nuria immediately snatched the blue one before Birch could offer it to Edward.

“Sorry Eddy," she taunted mockingly. "Better luck next time.”

Edward sighed and took the pink Pokedex. It wasn't the colour that exasperated him, but the pet name Nuria had for him. Ever since he was little Nuria had called him Eddy. It was just so demeaning. Edward was a proper name; by contrast, Eddy was just too childish. I'm basically an adult now! he thought, annoyed as he slipped the Pokedex into his trouser pocket. Despite thinking this, however, looking up to see Nuria sticking her tongue out at him made him raise his eyebrows, grinning; accepting the challenge.

“Erm,” interjected professor Birch, breaking the playful atmosphere, “I guess you know what these are. These are Type 19 Hoenn Pokedexes. It has Pokemon info, a map, and even tells you the level and condition of your team. Oh, and here are five empty Pokeballs each. Are you both ready to go?”

The two thirteen-year-olds nodded.

“And I assume you've both said goodbye to your families?”

They nodded again, though Edward carefully caught Nuria's eyes. They were as tough as steel, cold as ice.

“Well then, I guess there's nothing more for it," he said, a sense of finality in his voice as he began to re-adjust his bag as he turned away. "Oldale Town is through this small forest, as I'm sure you know, and keep safe on the way. If you leave now you might get there by sundown. Keep your Pokemon in good health and … Well, goodbye I guess.”

Nuria began trekking off towards the forest without a backward glance. Edward chuckled and turned to Birch, face alight.

“Thank you so much, professor. We'll try keep good care of them.” He then turned back towards Nuria, running to catching up with her just before they entered the forest, unaware of the true magnitude off the journey he was about to undertake.




Next (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14016201&postcount=4)

overlordmewtwo
15th January 2012, 3:56 AM
That's actually a pretty good fanfic, Scaldaver. Keep writing so I can see more of the plot come together.

cooloolcool
15th January 2012, 4:02 AM
amazing! prologue has me intrigued. do you have a pm list? if so can I be on it?

Scaldaver
15th January 2012, 10:10 AM
Hey, sorry for the week-long wait. I've been so busy lately. Cooloolcool, I'll pt you on my PM list right away.

This chapter is rated PG-13 for violence only - no profanities, etc. Enjoy.

Chapter 2
Battle

The cavern fell silent as the last seconds of life escaped the monster. It surveyed its home, nothing more than rubble and dust. The intruder was still there, staring at the once worshiped titan. There were once shrines dedicated to the monster, an entire religion devoted to it. And now all it was was a blood-soaked, crippled, pitiful creature, mere seconds from death. It exhaled one final time. Closed its eyes. And died.
***

“You could have at least said thanks.”

“Just stop babying me already! Look, we've got Pokemon for Pete's sake! We're basically adults. I can look after myself.”

Edward sighed. How come, even though he'd been brought up with Nuria, could he find himself so infuriated by her constant rudeness?

“And what's with you anyway?” she continued, “Ever since you saw that Mudkip you've had that stupid look on your face.”

“What? You said it yourself – we just got Pokemon. Why shouldn't I be excited? More to the point, why aren't you?”

Nuria sighed. “I think it'll hit me soon.”

They continued walking for a few more meters, and as they broke into a small clearing, Edward had an idea. He was surprised he hadn't thought of it before.

“Hey, how about we let them out? To, you know, talk to them.”

Nuria took a minimized ball out of her pocket and pushed the button. As it expanded she threw it high into the air, and at the highest point of its arc the capsule opened, releasing a white jet of plasma. The shape of a Chikorita began to form, and then the white glow was expelled, leaving the dinosaur creature its light green colour. Its leaf began bobbing up and down in the wind. Mesmerising.

Chikorita looked up at its master as Nuria took out her Pokedex. Her face broke out into a grin.

“Oh, it says your a girl. Well hello Chikorita. My name's Nuria, and I'm your new master. I'm sure we will get very strong together and stuff. Hey Eddy!” She called out his dreaded pet name excitedly. “It says on here she already knows Razor Leaf! That means she's already level six. Must be my lucky day.” She looked at Chikorita, a light in her eyes. A possessive, greedy sort of look. The Chikorita sighed.

“I'm not going to travel with you if I'm just some prize.” She spoke resigned and bored, lazily in her own language. The light in Nuria's eyes dimmed. “I've already been through that before. I had a trainer who only spoke about me being a thing, a trophy. He didn't care for me at all. In the end I stopped battling for him. He took me back to Professor Elm and returned me like I was some sort of collectible. He only ever raised me one level. So if that's how your going to treat me, we may as well just go our separate ways. All you trainers are the same.” She then went mute, and turned her back on the two humans.

Edward saw Nuria's face, chalk white. She caught Edward's eye, and he motioned toward Chikorita with his head. She nodded, and took an awkward step toward Chikorita.

Edward then became aware that this seemed to be more of a private thing, and walked across to the end of the clearing. He took his own Pokeball from his pocket and released his water type. As soon as the Mudkip materialized, it jumped again to Edward's feet and whispering,

“Thank you, thank you...”

Edwad knelt down to his Pokemon and sat down, so they were both at eye level.

“So,” Edward began, then became unsure of what exactly he was going to say. He grinned. “So, uh, are you ready to get stronger, and stuff?” Edward blushed. How cheesy that sounded. Just like Nuria. Oh dear. The Mudkip stood up proud and fearless, determined to prove his worth.

“Of course! I'll never let you down. I'll become stronger and stronger, and we'll beat anybody we battle! They say Mudkips are great, 'cause when we evolve we only have one weakness, and with an ice move we're basically indestructible!” He barked enthusiastically as he said this, and again Edward found that glow of anticipation, and excitement in his chest that rose and sent him into a moment of ecstasy.

“So, you really want to evolve?” Edward enquired. The Mudkip nodded enthusiastically.

“Yep! Some Pokemon hate evolving, but I just want to get stronger and stronger and stronger!” as he finished the sentence he started bouncing up and down in excitement. Edward was reminded of an excited six year old. He laughed again.

“Well, my name is Edward Lance, and that over there is Nuria Heliol. Don't ever mention her last name or she will hit you. Trust me. Anyway, we both started our adventure today, a week after my thirteenth birthday. Nuria turned thirteen last month, but she decided to wait for me. We're travelling together. And we're both aiming for the Hoenn league. I think that's all.” Edward looked back at Nuria and Chikorita, each of whom seemed not a bit more cheerful. He then reached into his pocket and brought out his bright pink Pokedex. After a second of silent internal fuming, he flipped it open and pointed it at Mudkip. As he did so, Mudkip spoke up.

“But I thought trainers started when they were ten. Why did you two wait?”

Edward grimaced,

“My parents needed a lot of convincing.” And I'm not entirely sure if Nuria's parents even know she left, he finished in his mind. He then checked his Pokedex. “So, you're a boy, and you only know Growl and Tackle.”

Mudkip sagged and Edward felt like slapping himself up the face. What did I have to say only for? Edward decided his Pokemon obviously needed some cheering up.

“Hey Mudkip, don't be down. This forest is probably crawling with Pokemon. Want to find a battle?” The effect was almost immediate. Mudkip jumped up, almost squeaking as he jumped up and down. Edward laughed again (something about this Mudkip just amused him) and stood up.

“Nuria,” he called over his shoulder, “Mudkip and I are going to find a battle. Catch up with us when you're both finished." Nuria turned and nodded, eyes devoid of any emotion except frustration.

He turned back towards Mudkip, and motioned him to follow. Obviously he wasn't going fast enough, as Mudkip began to run circles around him. They soon broke out of the clearing into a shaded area with a few trees. The forest between Little Root Town and Odale was not as dense as, say, Petalburg Forest, but Edward still knew how easy it was to get lost. As he had so many times before.

They soon came across another small clearing, and within were two dog-like creatures sleeping under a tree, each with spiky, thick, brown and white zigzagging fur that stuck up on end. They had small, spiky brown and cream tails, and on each of their eyes were what resembled a black mask . Zigzagoon. A good start, thought Edward. Now what though? I could attack them now, and have an advantage, but then they might be mad and tag team against us. Edward shuddered. That was not an option.

He had barely taken a calm, steadied step towards them when both the dogs bolted up suddenly and bared their teeth, growling.

“Leave this place human” the smaller one threatened. It sounded high-pitched and desperate. They must be young, Edward realised, maybe even my age?.

“Excuse me,” Edward began, trying to be polite as possible whilst trying to ignore the danger posed by two angry dogs, “but would one of you like to battle my Mudkip? We're, um, new.”

The Zigzagoons looked at each other, and mumbled quietly to each other. The bigger one stepped forward.

“I accept your challenge. We are sorry for our suspicion. Since the Shift we have not known who to trust.”

Edward nodded, relieved. Of course, about five years ago, most of the Pokemon migration patters in the world suddenly shifted, meaning lots of Pokemon appeared in regions they weren't normally indigenous to. Some of the local Pokemon had become upset as their food chains were messed up. Nobody knew why it had happened. Investigations were still going on.

Edward cleared his head and readied himself.

“Go!” he commanded his Mudkip. “Use Tackle!” The Mudkip started running, faster that Edward expected, and ran straight into the Zigzagoon, which just managed to jump to the side. Mudkip skidded to a halt and glared at the Zigzagoon, who had retreated to a safe distance.

“Now use Growl!” Edward grinned. Growl somehow made enemy Pokemon weaker, and as he expected a counter attack any time soon, it would be best to maximise Mudkip's chance of survivability. True to his thoughts, the raccoon Pokemon launched itself toward Mudkip as he let loose a threatening bark. The Zigzagoon winced and slowed slightly.

“Dodge!” his trainer called, and an instant before Zigzagoon collided with Mudkip. The mud fish jumped to the right, the wild Pokemon sailing harmlessly into the floor.

“Now Tackle again!” The Mudkip ran again and caught the Zigzagoon in the ribs. It was sent flying and landed painfully in a heap in the middle of the clearing. The observing Zigzagoon on the sidelines winced. Edward prepared himself for the normal type's counter, but then noticed with heart-stopping shock that the Pokemon wasn't breathing. Fainted Pokemon still breathed, he knew.Does this mean it's-

His thought were shattered as the brown and cream dog jumped up and ran straight into Mudkip, who was sent hurtling. Edward bit his lip. A trick.

“Are you okay Mudkip?” he called over. The Mudkip jumped right up, looking proud and determined but bleeding through a slight cut on his side. He nodded rigidly.

“Well then, used Growl and stay away!” Edward couldn't risk his only Pokemon to sustain another direct hit like that. Mudkip barked threateningly again toward the Zigzagoon, and this time when it winced Edward noticed the steady flow of blood seeping out slowly from a wound on its back. Revulsion overcame Edward for a second, and he almost commanded Mudkip to return when he remembered a little titbit of knowledge from school: Pokemon heal far quicker than humans, that's why they can fight so long and hard, and don't mind doing so. Edward exhaled, getting over his split second of indecisiveness.

“Use Tackle to finish it off!” commanded Edward, and the mud fish launched itself at the dog once more. Something cracked, the raccoon was thrown sideways. It didn't get up, but at least this time it remained breathing. The Zigzagoon's companion ran over from the edge of the clearing over to it, and began gently licking its wounds.

The next moment Edward was on his back – Mudkip had literally flown into his chest. He stood on his stomach, jumping up and down.

“Did you see that? Did you see that?” he gibbered quickly, a wide smile plastered on his blue face, “I- we won! Wewonwewonwewon! Did you see me, I was like 'Take this' and he was all 'Nooooooooo...'! Did you see? Didyoudidyoudidyou?”

“Yes,” Edward wheezed, the breath knocked out of him, but grinning maniacally nonetheless.“I'm proud of you. Did you just Tackle me?”
***

After returning the ecstatic Mudkip to its Pokeball, Edward wandered, still glowing with pride, through the forest, until he reached the clearing where Nuria was sitting cross legged, looking vacantly at the Pokeball clenched in her hand. As he drew near she patted the ground next to her.

“So, how did it go?” Edward asked tentatively.

“She still doesn't trust me,” she moaned, placing her head in her hands. “Turns out she takes first impressions too seriously. I tried to explain to her. She just about decided to give me a second chance.”

“Good.” Edward didn't know what else to say. “Maybe you should catch another Pokemon. To have someone else to train whilst you earn Chikorita's trust.”

“Yeah. Maybe.” She spoke vacantly. "How is it possible that I could have screwed this up so soon?” she murmured, resting her head on Edward's side. Edward placed his arm over her shoulder. He completely understood what she meant: the excitement of the day you get your Pokemon, the plans you make to make sure everything goes smoothly... and then to mess up in the first ten minutes? That would hurt anyone's pride. “How did it go with you and Mudkip?”

“Oh yeah.” He grinned, elated once again. “We won against a Zigzagoon.” All Nuria did was grin in acceptance. After a few seconds she rose her head from Edward's side, untangling his arm from around her.

“You're right. Maybe I'll -” She was cut short by a comparatively deafening rustle in the otherwise silent undergrowth. Nuria leapt to her feet and threw her Pokeball high into the air. Chikorita materialized in a flash of white. She shot a reproachful glance at Nuria, then too heard the rustling and adopted a battle position. “Razor Leaf!” Nuria commanded. Chikorita stood stock still. Seconds ticked by. “Please,” Nuria intoned. The leaf Pokemon then flicked her leaf toward the rustling area of the bush, and somehow from under its own leaf a barrage of the green, serrated leaves flew toward the rustling. Something screeched, and part of the bush was cut away, revealing what could have been a young boy. Except instead of a head was a green helmet with two flat blunt red horns at either side. And instead of wearing clothes there was what resembled a white nightgown, with the legs ending in ruffles of what appeared to be fabric. Its small white arms were waving frantically as it tried to detach itself from the thorny bush. Across its body where small cuts, either from the thorns or the Razor Leaf. Edward took out is bright pink (ugh!) Pokedex, flipped it open and pointed it at the flailing Pokemon. It spoke in a high, robotic female voice:

“Ralts, the Feeling Pokemon. This Pokemon is said to appear to happy trainers, but when it senses hostility it flees. It senses the emotions of those around it using the two horns in its head. Its eyes are concealed under its helmet.”

Edward nodded, thoughtful. The bit about appearing to happy trainers made sense. He had been so happy a few moments ago. And it must have tried to flee when it sensed Nuria's hostility, of trying to get worked up to catch a wild Pokemon.

All of a sudden the Pokemon broke loose from the branches and thorns, and jumped forward to face Chikorita.

“Raa-AAA-aaalts!” it Growled at the grass type. Chikorita flinched slightly, but held its position. Nuria grinned.

“Now Chikorita, would you be so kind as to use Tackle?” The Chikorita grinned and jumped forward, knocking the small Pokemon off balance. It fell to the ground, its breaths came out in short rasps. Nuria took out a minimized Pokeball from her pocket and threw it at the psychic type. The ball was moving on target, but just a moment before it should have collided with the Ralts, Chikorita jumped in the way and reflected it with her leaf.

“Chikorita, what the hell are you doing?” Nuria gasped incredulously, her voice teetering dangerously on the edge of rage. Chikorita glared at her trainer.

“Look at it, this Pokemon came to experience joy and happiness, but we bloody and bruise it and then try to take away its free will! Fighting is bad enough - at least we become stronger in the process - but forced imprisonment? If it wants to be caught, that's fine, but we should ask it before we catch it. It should at least know what it's getting into.”

Nuria fumed silently for a few moments, glaring back at her starter with a look of hatred, then looked at the Ralts, crumpled in a heap. Her eyes softened marginally as she understood Chikorita's point. Turning her head slowly towards the collapsed Pokemon, Nuria began to speak with conviction:

“Would you like me to catch you? Together we could become stronger, and when my training for champion ends I promise I will return you here. Is that acceptable?” Slowly, shaking slightly, the Ralts nodded its large green head. Nuria grinned, took another empty Pokeball from her pocket and threw it at the wild Pokemon whilst Chikorita cringed, aghast with Ralts' decision. It popped open on contact with it, and the Ralts dissolved in glowing red plasma and shot into the ball. It closed, fell to the ground, and clicked.




Chapter 3 - Storm (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14042957&postcount=11)

cooloolcool
15th January 2012, 3:50 PM
You are a good writer. Very descriptive. Love the blocking of the pokeball and the talking to pokemon.

Chimpchar
15th January 2012, 10:52 PM
Could you add me to your pm list?

overlordmewtwo
15th January 2012, 11:22 PM
Very good writing, Scaldaver. I'm somewhat considering writing a fanfic of my own because of you. Keep up the good work! Looking forward to Chapter 3!

Dragonfree
16th January 2012, 4:35 AM
Your punctuation of dialogue is often inconsistent and thus by extension often incorrect, so it sounds like you could use a primer in how it works.

Dialogue tags - things like "he said", "she said, annoyed", "he shouted", etc. - are insertions into a sentence, not sentences of their own. So say you're going to add a dialogue tag to a sentence such as, "My name is Bob." This is done in one of the following ways:

He said, "My name is Bob."
"My name," he said, "is Bob."
"My name is Bob," he said.

Note that wherever a dialogue tag is separated from the actual dialogue, there is a comma; that if there is a comma after a quoted sentence, it goes inside the quotation marks; that the capitalization of the quoted sentence acts as if the dialogue tag simply weren't there; and that the capitalization of the dialogue tags acts as if the quotation marks weren't there. This means all of the following are incorrect:

He said "My name is Bob."
"My name" he said "is Bob."
"My name is Bob" he said.
"My name is Bob." He said.
He said, "my name is Bob."
"My name is Bob", he said.

Also note that if you have a dialogue tag after one quoted sentence and then have another quoted sentence afterwards, that's different from inserting a dialogue tag into the middle of a single quoted sentence. The second quoted sentence is irrelevant to the dialogue tag attached to the first one. So this is correct:

"My name is Bob," he said. "What's yours?"

When the sentence you're quoting ends in something other than a period - such as an exclamation mark, a question mark, or an ellipsis - then you do not replace it with a comma even if it's followed by a dialogue tag, but the capitalization of the dialogue tag still follows the same rules as usual, like so:

"What is your name?" he asked.
"Hurry up!" she said. "We're getting late!"
"I don't know..." he said hesitantly.

However, note that not everything you put after dialogue that contains a pronoun or a character's name is actually a dialogue tag; it is only a dialogue tag if it has a speech verb that directly describes the quote being uttered. So if a character says a sentence and then grins, then "He grinned" is not a dialogue tag; it's a separate sentence and should be punctuated as a separate sentence unrelated to the dialogue, like so:

She laughed. "That's stupid."
"You're stupid." He scowled at her.
"Childish, are we?" She grinned. "You're amusing."

Note that if you have a dialogue tag that also includes an unrelated action, that's punctuated like a dialogue tag because it still has a speech verb and so is still a description of the dialogue being said:

"I'm not sure," he said, twiddling his thumbs. "Isn't that kind of dangerous?"
"I guess," she said; her face fell.
"Well, we'll figure it out," he said, grinning in a way he hoped was somewhat encouraging.

And that just about covers it, except for some rare situations I won't go into. Try Googling for a grammar guide if something comes up that isn't mentioned here.



“I know... of your goal.......................... I know... I cannot beat you.”
An ellipsis is exactly three periods. Putting in more of them to lengthen the pause is something done in video games, but not in prose. If you want to show this as an especially long pause, write some narration in between that indicates this: "I know... of your goal..." The creature waited, taking a slow, leveled breath. "I know... I cannot beat you."


The creature shot opened his eyes
Either he just opened his eyes, or he shot them open. "Shot opened" doesn't make any sense.

Although in the rest of the prologue you refer to the creature as "it", and in your preamble you explained all legendaries are genderless in this fic, so I'm presuming this "he" was a mistake. Be careful with this sort of thing; I also find it hard to stick to calling characters "it" (and in my fic legendaries, although technically genderless, are referred to with gendered pronouns anyway), but if you're going to do it, be very careful with your proofreading so that you don't accidentally mess up somewhere.


Three pokemon looked up at the boy expectantly in the forest clearing. The one to his left resembled some sort of tiny dinosaur, light green skin with very rounded limbs. Around the base of the neck-less head were small green beads, that went all the way around. Upon its head a large leaf on a stalk stuck out, just above the large red eyes. Below its featureless body were four featureless legs, each ending with a small white claw. A small tail protruded from its hind. This was a Chikorita, the leaf pokemon. It stood calmly, its leaf waving gently in the cool breeze.

Beside it was a small bird that resembled an orange chicken. Its bulbous head which rested on its small round body contained few features, most predominately a small cream beak, two blue shining eyes, and three yellow tipped feathers sticking up on top. Below its head, small wing-like limbs protruded from the top of its body. Below two cream sticks connected to scrawny chicken feet stuck out. It carried most of its weight on only one, the other slightly bent backward, in the air. This was Torchic, the chick pokemon.

To the right of the boy stood a blue dog-like pokemon. Instead of a tail, however, there was a large pale blue fin that stood vertical against its backside. Its body was light marine blue, but a pale blue underbelly beneath. It had four short legs, each with three undefined toes at the end. Upon its large head stood another vertical fin, the same colour as the blue had. On each of its cheeks were a strange orange star shaped gill. The boy was surprised when he didn't see any eyes, but they were prised shut. The creature was also quietly murmuring to itself -
You really don't need to describe what Pokémon look like in this kind of detail. It's a pretty safe bet that if someone is reading Pokémon fanfiction, they already know what Pokémon look like - and if they don't, the only hope they'll ever actually have an accurate image of the Pokémon in their head is if they look up the name somewhere and find a picture, anyway. Describing Pokémon is better reserved for when there is something interesting or unusual about this particular Pokémon that's worth commenting on; the POV character wouldn't be mentally picking apart the details of what their starter choices look like if they're already familiar with Pokémon. More in-depth advice on this subject can be found here (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=8439524&postcount=6), courtesy of Negrek.


Behind him the girl yawned loudly.
Suddenly bringing up "the girl" as if we should already know there's a girl there is a bit jarring. If you don't want to mention her name yet for some reason, "the girl behind him" would work better.


Edward grinned. She knew that Nuria was only kidding
Presumably that should be a "he".


She checked her watch, and raised her eyebrows.
Common mistake, but there shouldn't be a comma there because "raised her eyebrows" could not be a separate sentence of its own; "and" only has a comma before it if there are complete sentences on both sides (well, that and if you have a list of three items or more and use the Oxford comma).


“And you Nuria?”
Here, on the other hand, there should be a comma after "you", because the "Nuria" is a direct address, and there are always commas surrounding direct addresses.


“OK,” Birch continued
In a story you'd generally want to write "okay", because "OK" is shorthand that doesn't really belong in prose.


Edward caste his eyes over to the Mudkip.
Cast. Caste is a different word.


“I'd like the Mudkip, please,” he said, loudly so the Mudkip could overhear.
"Overhear" is a bit of a weird choice of wording here, since overhearing something generally refers to hearing something you aren't supposed to hear; talking loudly so that someone can overhear you seems like an oxymoron. Just use "hear".


Before Edward could doge
It's spelled "dodge".


Edward's facelit up.
You forgot the space between "face" and "lit".


Edward took the ball and held it toward Mudkip, the blue dog-fish turned into a red plasma and withdrew into the ball.
This is a comma splice, or a sentence where two full sentences are separated with only a comma. Commas aren't strong enough to separate two sentences that could stand on their own, as here; you need to replace it with a semicolon or add a conjunction such as "and" after it.

Also, "plasma" is uncountable, like "water"; you wouldn't say something turned into a water, so you wouldn't say it turned into a plasma, either. Just "turned into red plasma" would suffice.

In the second chapter, you write "your" instead of "you're" a couple of times. When it's short for "you are", it's written "you're"; "your" means something that belongs to you.


And now all it was was a blood soaked, crippled, pitiful creature
That would be "blood-soaked", with a hyphen.


Well hello Chikorita.
That should be "Well, hello, Chikorita", first because "Well" at the beginning of a sentence always has a comma after it, and then because it's directly addressing Chikorita.


As soon as the Mudkip materialized, it jumped again to Edward's feet and whispering,

“Thank you, thank you...”
You've done this several times, but it's wrong. You've probably heard people say you should start a new paragraph with a new line of dialogue, but you only need to start a new paragraph when a new character starts speaking, because paragraphs are meant to separate topics. There is no change of topic between a character doing something and the same character saying something, so you don't need to put a paragraph break there.


How cheesey that sounded.
Cheesy.


He then reached into his pocket and brought out his bright pink Pokedex. After a second of silent internal fuming, he flipped it open and pointed it a Mudkip.
Earlier you said he didn't mind the Pokédex's color, just the nickname. So which one is it? Also, that should be "pointed it at Mudkip".


Mudkip looked dishearten.
Disheartened.


Little Root Town
Littleroot Town is only two words.


They soon came across another small clearing, and within were two dog-like creatures, with spiky, thick, brown and white zigzagging fur that stuck up on end. They had small, spiky brown and cream tails, and on each of their eyes were what resembled a black mask . Zigzagoon. A good start, thought Edward. They appeared to be sleeping under a tree on the outskirts of the clearing.
Another problem with such lengthy Pokémon descriptions: by doing it that way, you bring attention to things the character wouldn't be noticing before things that he would. Edward should note them as being asleep immediately, not only after mentally describing what they look like - otherwise the reader starts imagining them there playing or standing around until you suddenly mention they were asleep all along, and the effect is jarring.


and this time when it wince
Winced.


Pokemon heal far quicker than humans, that's why they can fight so long and hard, and don't mind doing so.
A comma splice again. That first comma should be replaced with a colon or semicolon.


Something clicked, the raccoon was thrown sideways.
Another comma splice, but I'm also just confused. Something clicked? What do you mean by that?


the breathe knocked out of him
Breath. Breath is the noun; breathe is the verb.


“Raa-AAA-aaalts!” it Growled at the grass type.
You generally haven't been capitalizing moves; don't suddenly capitalize this one, especially since this is a context where you generally wouldn't capitalize it anyway (since you're using "growl" as a speech verb here).


“Look at it, this Pokemon came to experience joy and happiness, but we bloody and bruise it and try to take away its free will. If it wants to be caught, that's fine, but we should ask it before we catch it. It should know what it's getting into.”
Well, that seems a bit hypocritical considering Chikorita seemed pretty enthusiastic about Tackling it. Just saying "Oi, don't go capturing it without asking" is okay, but with the fact she's also disdainfully mentioning the bloodying and bruising, you're just making her come off as unreasonable.


and through it at the wild Pokemon
The past tense of "throw" is spelled "threw". "Through" means going through something.


So all in all, your spelling and grammar need some polish; you might want to get a beta-reader who can correct errors like the ones I've been pointing out here. Better proofreading, to take care of the relatively frequent typos, would also be in order.

We don't know much about your plot yet, but it seems potentially intriguing. Are you planning to continue to post snippets of plot at the beginning of each chapter? Because that could be a good idea to keep readers interested before the main characters properly get caught up in it.

It's nice to see you're trying to establish your characters early on, but I think you could do with being a bit more subtle with Nuria; her rudeness at the beginning seems a bit exaggerated, and at the same time you have Edward keep remarking on it, to the point that it feels like you're trying too hard to get the reader to notice. Likewise, when Chikorita berates her, not only is her turnaround quite complete - despite her usual tough manner, she gets all melodramatically "How could I have gone so wrong?!" - which already feels a bit overdone, but you also have Edward remarking in the narration on how she's sensitive deep down and so on. It feels like you're overexplaining it. Let us deduce what her character is like on our own instead of directly telling us about it quite so much.

Also, the word "said" doesn't bite. You often seem to be going through contortions to avoid it, with words like "intoned" and repeated uses of "spoke". Generally "said" is an invisible word; nobody notices if most of your dialogue tags use it, and they're a lot more likely to notice if you keep using unusual speech verbs. Most of the time people just say things, and that's okay.

Is there a reason Edward hasn't checked his Mudkip's gender, by the way? It feels kind of weird for him to keep referring to it as "it", especially when the first thing Nuria did was find out her Chikorita was female.


(Have you by any chance read my fic? I'm seeing a lot of amusing similarities, but they could be a coincidence.)

Scaldaver
16th January 2012, 6:42 PM
Yeah, I suppose I better explain.

Thank you so much Dragonfree for the grammar checks. They would've gone completely unnoticed by me forever if you hadn't pointed it out. Ironically, by going through to check what I did wrong, I found more mistakes. Thanks so much and I'll get onto changing them.

But the main problem is this. I have literally two days a week for writing, and even then I have loads going on. I do want to devote more time, and I will try and find some.

Unfortunately this means that either you all have to wait months for chapters while I proof read, etc, or you can get slightly mistaken pieces of work. PM me to tell me what you want.
Chimpchar, I will PM you when a chapter comes out.


Well, that seems a bit hypocritical considering Chikorita seemed pretty enthusiastic about Tackling it. Just saying "Oi, don't go capturing it without asking" is okay, but with the fact she's also disdainfully mentioning the bloodying and bruising, you're just making her come off as unreasonable.


Chikorita is not reasonable. There's the fun.



Earlier you said he didn't mind the Pokédex's color, just the nickname. So which one is it?

While the fact he had been given a pink pokedex annoyed him, his nickname is worse. And the fact he had no choice. Loads of things.


You generally haven't been capitalizing moves; don't suddenly capitalize this one, especially since this is a context where you generally wouldn't capitalize it anyway (since you're using "growl" as a speech verb here).

Actually I'm pretty sure I capitalized all the moves. Just a note for everyone, I will always capitalize them. For example,

"Trapinch used Dig."
"Trapinch began Digging."
"It Dug a hole." ETC

Dragonfree
16th January 2012, 7:10 PM
Actually I'm pretty sure I capitalized all the moves.
Looking at it again, you did capitalize them most of the time; I got the impression you weren't capitalizing because the first move you mention is noncapitalized:

It says on here she already knows razor leaf!

And then right after the Growling Ralts, there's

“Now Chikorita, would you be so kind as to use tackle?”
so when I looked around after being jarred by that "Growling", that was what I saw. Sorry about that, though that still leaves those two needing fixing. (Still think capitalizing move names when they're being used as if they were common verbs sounds kind of awkward, but eh.)

Also, basic proofreading really doesn't take that long, even if you only have two days a week to write. Careful editing can take longer, but you should be able to easily eliminate most or all typos and such errors by just reading carefully over what you've written two or three times. I'd strongly encourage you to at least make an attempt to do that.

Scaldaver
21st January 2012, 10:32 AM
Okay, my main goal in this chapter is to get at least two positive comments from Dragonfree. Could someone PM me and tell me how to get trainer card pictures in my posts? The FAQ does not help me at all. Hope you like this chapter guys.

This chapter is rated pg-13. There is no violence, sexual references or profanities, but a horrible bit with mutilation.


Chapter 3 - Storm

The murderer looked down toward its recently dead quarry. A tear rolled down its cheek.

“I am so sorry,” it said, nothing other than sincerity in its voice.

It turned once. And vanished.

***

Seconds later, the walls of the cavern began to crack, glowing bright orange as magma began to seep through. Soon the titan was engulfed in the pyroclastic flow as the earth began to rumble. High above, in the open air, the rain began to fall.

***

The silence was deafening. And then-

“I'm sorry, Chikorita.”

The leaf Pokemon replied after a few seconds, regaining its composure. “At least you listened to me. It was more than what he did.” Even without asking, the two humans knew who he was.

“Thank you. I'll be more careful next time.” Nuria held up Chikorita's Pokeball, and Chikorita melted away in a flash of red and shot back into the ball. “So,” she reasserted herself, standing upright, “looks like I caught my first Pokemon.” Her face lit up in a grin. Edward smiled too. “And I may have made things better with my Chikorita.” She looked down to her watch. “Well, that's what I call a good first hour of Pokemon training.”

“Speaking of which,” Edward remembered, “shouldn't we be on our way? Birch said we should make it by sundown.”

“Yeah.” Nuria nodded. She looked up. “And the sun's already setting. Come on.” She took off forward. He caught up with her soon enough. The atmosphere was tense. Something was off. He decided to break the silence.

“So, a Ralts. Good start. Aren't they really rare around here? I thought they were native to Sinnoh or somewhere.” Nuria grinned.

“Yeah, they are. I think they're a bit rarer now a few more have been killed off by the Luxio packs since the Shift. So,” she looked at Edward, “what Pokemon are you going to catch first? Are you going to think up a strategy or what?” Edward pondered for a moment as they walked.

“Well, something Mudkip said earlier got me thinking. He said that with an ice attack a Swampert is almost invincible. What do you reckon he means by that?”

“Isn't it obvious?” Nuria chuckled, “You should have paid more attention in school. When it evolves, it becomes part ground type. This means electric type moves do no damage at all, but it is left with a solitary crushing weakness.” The answer hit Edward immediately. How did I not see it before?

“Of course. It has a four times weakness against grass attacks. And ice type moves are good against grass!” Edward beamed. An invincible Pokemon...

“Well,” Nuria intervened, bursting his bubble, “Swamperts are quite slow actually. And you have to remember, every other trainer in this region got a choice of Torchic, Mudkip or...” Edward's heart sank. Of course, Treecko. The blinding fast wood-gecko Pokemon. If a Swampert was to battle one of Treeko's evolutions, even a Swampert as fast as Mudkip's evolution was bound to be... Well, it wouldn't be pretty.

“So,” Nuria continued, “What you need is a Pokemon that covers Swampert's weakness. Which is grass. Grass types are weak against fire, ice, poison, flying... and bug! Which one do you want?”

Edward furrowed his brow in thoughtfulness. He decided to change the subject.

“So, it looks like you and Chikorita are getting along slightly better.” Nuria was silent for a moment.

“I should have remembered.” She muttered, “Back when we were talking, she was going on about how unfair the whole trainer-catch-Pokemon thing is. She thought it took away their free will. I mean, I know the Capture Rules and all that. I would have asked the Ralts, but just after I had caught it.”

Edward nodded. He remembered being taught the Capture Rules when he was really young. Some were basic, like 'Don't catch another trainer's Pokemon', whilst others were more loose and specific at the same time. For a trainer to begin training a Pokemon, the trainer must have the Pokemon's consent. The consent could be asked for before or after capture, but if it was asked after capture and the Pokemon refused, by law the trainer must release it.

They walked on in silence a little longer whilst Edward thought. He looked up to the sky to see how dark it was getting. He was surprised to see the dark, swirling mass of the rain clouds obscuring the sun.

The rain began to fall.

Instinctively both Edward and Nuria started to quicken their step. Their clothes were more summer wear than waterproof. Funny, Edward thought, the weather forecast said nothing about rain...

As the rain became thicker and heavier the two started to run. Edward was already wet through, and Nuria was faring no better.

After a few minutes of running in silence, Nuria outpacing Edward by a few metres, they saw the dim lights of Odale Town. Without stopping to admire the view, the two ran through the downpour as lighting forked the sky, until they spotted a building with a red roof. A Pokemon Centre.

The automatic doors whirled open to give them admittance. They stood, shivering and dripping, until the warmth of the building started to work its wonders. Edward looked down at himself. Soaked. Nuria too. Nuria took a fistful of her hair and held it in front of her eyes. She scowled.

After a few seconds of enjoying the pleasant warmth, Edward noticed a group of young children positioned in a huddle around a wall television. Edward couldn't make out the sound, or too much of the picture.

“Nuria,” he began, but she followed his gaze and nodded. They walked off toward the screen, leaving a trail of water behind.

“...and after such an eruption both Lavaridge and Fallarbor Town are now submerged in lava. Luckily the towns had been evacuated of people and Pokemon due to the recent earthquakes that have plagued this area these past few days.”

The tension in their air could have been cut with a knife. Edward gazed at the screen in shock. An anchorman sat at a desk with camera footage of the carnage behind him: the camera zooming in to survey the damage whilst he reported the statistics. Bright orange molten rock was streaming down from Mount Chimney, grey and white ash filling the air above as a torrential downpour fell from the swirling clouds above. At the base of the mountain the lava had pooled and filled up most of the valleys around. As the rain lashed the pyroclastic flow it vaporised, rising as steam and creating a dense fog. In one area the lava was being buffeted by sandstorm as the slow flowing liquid's heat formed glass crystals in the sand dunes. The shot changed to the lava rolling gradually into the water near Fallarbor Town, vaporising the liquid on contact. The shot changed again, to the sight of a hundred far-off flying types soaring into the distance. The reporter raised his voice, knocking Edward out of his stupor.

“We appear to be getting information that a large object has risen out of the volcano mouth. It's fifteen, no, twenty metres long! It's a large boulder, and-” The reporter froze in mid speech. His face turned a ghostly shade of white as news reeled into his earphone. He stared at the camera in shock.

The camera changed shot again. In absolute silence, it showed a shape flowing down the volcano atop the lava. Every being in the room gasped in absolute horror.

Flecked in cooling rock and dripping wet at the same time was a massive creature on its stomach, dinosaur-like with blood red plating. Between the chinks formed a black pattern, but lava had flown up so many of the seams that the pattern had become almost indiscernible. Massive jutting spikes shot out from the sides of its neck, lower chest and tail. At the end of the tail, which was stuck in position high above the creature, were blood red razors, each sharper than the next. Upon its head were similar red razors, and one of the creature's gargantuan arms with cleaver-like claws hung suspended at its side. The other was submerged in the molten stew, as was its face.

“My God.” The reporter gasped, unable to come up with any other sufficient words to describe the impossibility that was so plainly there.

As it drew closer, moving gradually down the slope more monstrosities revealed themselves. Deep, long lacerations on its back, several gouge marks missing from its sides. Darker sections of red became visible in and around the cuts. Its armour was cracked in numerous places.

“B-b-but,” the anchorman appeared to be struggling for breath, like all the others in the room, “i-it's... It's Groudon!”

As soon as he said the name every trainer started out of their collective daze. Associating such a revered name, and connecting it to this madness... too much.

“No!”

“Impossible...”

“No way...”

Were just some of the shocked mutterings born of pure astonishment. The anchorman was gibbering wildly as an overload of information came from his earpiece. But nobody was listening, each too incredulous for regular function.

Edward fell backwards on the floor as his knees turned to jelly. 'Impossible' was written on his mind. All his life he'd heard stories, legends of an immense creature that had raised all the land on Earth. Such a creature which had been so vital to life as we know it, of such sheer strength...

He'd only ever seen pictures, artist's impressions, but somehow he knew this was the real thing. There could be no doubt that this was the ancient Continent Pokemon. Yet it was lunacy, impossible to believe. What sort of creature could have possibly does this?

The bellow of lighting outside startled Edward. He looked around. Nuria was on the floor too, glaring accusingly at the screen, whilst the other trainers took the news in their own ways. One young boy ran away, crying.

Edward looked outside again, in want of any other fitting action. The deluge. Of course. Ancient tales dictated that Groudon had a nemesis. An equal. A titan of the sea, that made the oceans of the world by causing continuous and unending rain that could flood the world. But, the tale went on, Groudon balanced this by intensifying the sun's rays, causing drought. Together they kept the world's weather in balance.

And now Groudon was... was... gone....He couldn't bear to think about it.

***

The creature ignored the tumultuous cloudburst as it observed the great expanse of ocean below it. Somewhere, it knew, its prey was in hiding. Stationary at the bottom of the sea for thousands of years. The creature prepared itself. It dived.



Chapter 4 - Travel (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14080629&postcount=18)

overlordmewtwo
21st January 2012, 1:28 PM
Kyogre actually KILLED Groudon! Dang, that's harsh! I knew they had a rivalry, but did it really have to go THAT far?! Either way, great storyline, and I hope to see it unfold even more!

cooloolcool
21st January 2012, 4:18 PM
I'm betting "The Creature" is Rayquaza! But don't tell me! I love this fanfic!

Dragonfree
23rd January 2012, 2:24 AM
The scene divider after the italicized portion at the beginning should presumably be in its own line.


“I'm sorry for that, Chikorita.” The leaf Pokemon replied after a few seconds.

“At least you listened to me. It was more than what he did.” Even without asking, the two humans knew who he was.
I think you may have misunderstood me slightly when I said you only needed a new paragraph when a new character is speaking. The main point was that paragraphs separate topics, and there is no change of topic between a character doing something and the same character saying something. Because it's the latter line that's being said by Chikorita, "The leaf Pokémon replied after a few seconds" should be in that paragraph, not the first one - otherwise you're making it sound as if Chikorita was apologizing to herself.

I also notice you make several more blunders with dialogue punctuation in this chapter; you might want to read my explanation of it again. For example:


She looked down to her watch, “Well, that's what I call a good first hour of Pokemon training.”
"She looked down to her watch" is not a dialogue tag, because it's not a description of her saying the dialogue. Therefore, it should just be a separate sentence from the dialogue and end in a period.


Nuria chuckled, “You should have paid more attention in school. When it evolves, it becomes part ground type. This means electric type moves do no damage at all, but it is left with a solitary crushing weakness.”
You might be able to chuckle a word or two, but you can hardly chuckle three full sentences, so again, "Nuria chuckled" isn't a description of her saying her dialogue and should not have a comma after it.


“So,” Nuria continued, “What you need is a Pokemon that covers Swampert's weakness. Which is grass. Grass types are weak against fire, ice, poison, flying... and bug! Which one do you want?”
You're breaking up a single sentence with the dialogue tag there, so the "What" shouldn't be capitalized.


“Yeah, they are. I think they're a bit rarer now a few more have been killed off by the Luxio packs since the Shift. So,” she looked at Edward, “what Pokemon are you going to catch first? Are you going to think up a strategy or what?”
"She looked at Edward", yet again, is not a description of her saying the dialogue, so you can't separate it from dialogue by commas.

So yeah, look into that again.

You have a bit of a thing for really short, choppy sentences, sometimes, which can make the prose feel a bit jerky, too:


Her face lit up in a grin. Edward smiled too.

She took off forward. He caught up with her soon enough. The atmosphere was tense. Something was off. He decided to break the silence.

Edward looked down at himself. Soaked. Nuria too. Nuria took a fistful of her hair and held it in front of her eyes. She scowled.
Combining some of these to make the relation between the events they describe more apparent would make them flow better. Short sentences are sometimes effective, but in all of these passages I felt they were hurting your flow.

Aaanyway.


Nuria held up Chikorita's Pokeball, and Chikorita melted away in a flash of red, and shot back into the ball.
The latter comma shouldn't be there - "shot back into the ball" isn't a complete sentence.


“So, a Ralts. Good start. Aren't they really rare around here? I thought they were native to Sinnoh or somewhere.” Nuria grinned.
Huh? Ralts are canonically native to Hoenn. ?_? I can't figure out what you're trying to do here; why make it seem less plausible for them to find a Ralts?


Swaperts are quite slow actually.
"Swamperts". Also, there should be a comma before "actually".


Edward's heart sank. Of course, Treeko.
Treecko has a c, like "gecko".


The blinding fast Wood Gecko Pokemon.
Capitalizing the Pokédex classification is at least a bit silly, don't you think?


Edward furrowed his brow in thoughtfulness. He decided to change the subject.

“So, it looks like you and Chikorita are getting along slightly better.” Nuria was silent for a moment.

“I should have remembered.” She muttered, “Back when we were talking, she was going on about how unfair the whole trainer-catch-Pokemon thing is. She thought it took away their free will. I mean, I know the Capture Rules and all that. I would have asked the Ralts, but just after I had caught it.”
Again, because it's Edward saying the first line of dialogue here, that dialogue belongs in the paragraph with Edward's actions, while Nuria's silence belongs in the paragraph with her speech.


The consent could be asked for before or after capture, but if it was asked after capture and the Pokemon refuses, by law the trainer must release it.
You slip into present tense there with "refuses".


They walked on in silence a little longer whilst Edward thought. He looked up to the sky to see how dark it was getting. He was surprised to see the dark, swirling mass of the rain clouds obscuring the sun.
It seems strange they didn't notice when the clouds first appeared; surely, if it suddenly grows dark, they should look up to see, if only because they're out traveling so the weather is very directly relevant to them. Or, if that was what you meant to imply was happening, it's strangely worded, because you don't bring attention to the strangeness of what's happening, instead just making it sound like he happens to look up to see how dark it is.


Without stopping to admire the view, the two ran through the downpour as lighting forked the sky, until they spotted a building with a blood red roof.
Describing things as "blood red" carries an ominous connotation that doesn't fit with the fact it's, well, a Pokémon Center. Use a more neutral descriptor; there are plenty of red things that don't have those connotations.


The automatic doors whirled open to give them admittance. They stood, shivering and dripping, until the warmth of the building started to work its wonders.
The warmth of the building really wouldn't start working much in the way of wonders while they're still dripping wet. Water conserves temperature better than air, so their waterlogged clothes would stay cold for a bit even after they get into the Pokémon Center. Their first concern should be getting out of their wet clothes.

I think you might want to establish better why they go over to the television - perhaps by moving the comment about the tense atmosphere to when they step in, so that they sense there's something going on, or by having Edward explicitly think, "Maybe the news has something about this sudden storm." As it is they just kind of walk over to the TV as if the TV is the obvious place to go when you get into a Pokémon Center and are soaked through.


In one area the lava was being buffeted by sandstorm as the slow flowing liquid's heat formed glass crystals in the sand dunes.
Glass actually doesn't form crystals.


The shot changed again,to the sight of hundred of dotted shapes flying into the distance.
There should be a space after the comma, and that should be "hundreds". That said, I don't know what you're talking about here and you don't go on to explain, so I'm kind of puzzled by this. What dotted shapes? Are they migrating bird Pokémon or something?


Flecked in cooling rock and dripping wet at the same time was a massive creature on its stomach, dinosaur like with blood red plating. Between the chinks formed a black pattern, but lava had flown up so many of the seams that the pattern had become almost indiscernible. Massive jutting spikes shot out from the sides of its neck, lower chest and tail. At the end of the tail, which was stuck in position high above the creature were blood red razors, each sharper than the next. Upon its head were similar red razors, and one of the creature's gargantuan arms with cleaver-like claws hung suspended at its side. The other was submerged in the molten stew, as was its face.
Another Pokémon description that mentions routine details of the Pokémon's appearance instead of the actual clearly most noteworthy thing about the Pokémon: you go meticulously into where Groudon's body has spikes and razors, but fail to actually mention that it's dead, which is by far the most important thing about the image Edward is seeing. It should be crystal clear to us the moment it is to Edward that Groudon isn't moving and is lying limply in an awkward position with its arm just hanging there - that should be the focus of the description, rather than what Groudon generally looks like.

That said, this isn't a bad description - it could just be better focused. You use strong, evocative words to convey Groudon's size and generally intimidating appearance, and you manage to make the general sight of it there sound as frightening as it should be. When its injuries start to show, you also continue to portray that fairly effectively. Could maybe be polished in various ways, but overall you did the horror pretty well - in many authors' hands these descriptions would have been clinical and boring, but you made them (or at least parts of them) quite visceral and memorable.


“Ladies and gentlemen,” the anchorman appeared to be struggling for breath, like all the others in the room, “Its... Its Groudon!”
"Ladies and gentlemen" seems a bit overly formal here - you've been trying to show the anchorman is terrified, so using a phrase like "Ladies and gentlemen" doesn't seem like something he'd have the presence of mind to do. Not overly important, but eh.

As with "your" and "you're", "its" means something belonging to it, whereas "it's" is short for "it is". Also, bad dialogue punctuation again.


“No!”
“Impossible...”
“It can't be...”
Were just some of the shocked mutterings born of pure astonishment.
You really don't need the last line there; the actual lines speak for themselves. Also, they should be paragraphed normally, with double spacing and all.


He'd seen pictures, artist's impressions. He knew this was the real thing.
Having seen artists' impressions isn't a very good way to back up his conviction that this is the real Groudon - saying they were artists' impressions is drawing attention to the fact it probably wouldn't actually look quite like the pictures. This would work better if you said something like, "He'd seen pictures - only artists' impressions, but it was still unmistakeable that this was the real thing" - then the fact they're artists' impressions is more sensibly introduced as something of a counterpoint to his conviction.


What sort of creature could have possibly does this?
Could have possibly done this.


The bellow of lighting outside startled Edward.
I'm presuming you're thinking of "lightning". It has an extra n.


And now Groudon was... was... gone....He couldn't bear to think about it.
I think these ellipses aren't really helping you. Ellipses are meant to convey pauses, hesitation or trailing off; they're not magic wands that make your sentences more dramatic. "Groudon was... was... gone" works, implying he looks for a word and then emphasizing the one he finds; "Groudon was... was... gone..." just lessens the impact of the sentence by making it sound kind of uncertain.

Also, punctuation always has a space after it, and I actually think this would be more effective without the "He couldn't bear to think about it"; we can already tell he's in shock, so it's unnecessary, and just the realization that Groudon is gone is a more effective closing line for the scene.


Somewhere, it knew, its prey was in hiding. Stationary at the bottom of the sea for thousands of years.
"Stationary at the bottom of the sea for thousands of years" is not a full sentence. Sentence fragments often work well for effect - you've had several in the previous italicized bits - but I don't think it really does here. You should probably combine it with the previous sentence, e.g. "Somewhere, it knew, its prey was in hiding, still stationary at the bottom of the sea after thousands of years" or something like that.

Kudos on getting to the point. I imagined it would take longer to get the main characters involved with the Groudon plot, what with them being beginning trainers and all, but the fact you're getting to it immediately is promising and stirs things up nicely from the otherwise fairly standard OT fic beginning.

Also, like I said, I think you did a pretty good job describing the general horror of Groudon's body floating down with the lava - you have something of a sense of evocative word usage that I for instance completely failed at for years after I started writing. You just could have focused it better on that instead of describing exactly what Groudon looked like.

Scaldaver
23rd January 2012, 6:30 PM
Well, two positive comments was what I asked for and what I got. Feels like a good day.

Thanks for the spelling help. I've started to write MUST DO BETTER AT GRAMMAR with my own blood on the wall, so I think I'll get my act together.

I just have a few points from your review that I want to defend, however:


Huh? Ralts are canonically native to Hoenn. ?_? I can't figure out what you're trying to do here; why make it seem less plausible for them to find a Ralts?

Ralts is rarer and in fewer areas in Hoenn than in Sinnoh. It's the same way in which Bulbapedia claim the Meditite is native to Sinnoh.




It seems strange they didn't notice when the clouds first appeared; surely, if it suddenly grows dark, they should look up to see, if only because they're out traveling so the weather is very directly relevant to them. Or, if that was what you meant to imply was happening, it's strangely worded, because you don't bring attention to the strangeness of what's happening, instead just making it sound like he happens to look up to see how dark it is.


In a forest, in deep thought, on the first day of being a trainer a person can a) simply not see the sky and b) their mind is wondering too much.

Secondly, Birch said that they should try and make it to Odale by nightfall. Checking the sky is a way of pacing himself - too dark and they should hurry.


The warmth of the building really wouldn't start working much in the way of wonders while they're still dripping wet. Water conserves temperature better than air, so their waterlogged clothes would stay cold for a bit even after they get into the Pokémon Center. Their first concern should be getting out of their wet clothes.


I've got to disagree on that point. When one moves from a cold area, dripping wet, to a warmer area, still dripping wet, they will get warmer. Whilst the water prevents your own body heat from keeping you warm, the winds makes the water colder by evaporation, and therefore is what truly makes you cold. And yes, they would still be cold for a while, but 'for a while' would be only a few seconds.



That said, I don't know what you're talking about here and you don't go on to explain, so I'm kind of puzzled by this. What dotted shapes? Are they migrating bird Pokémon or something?


Yeah, they were birds. I'll change it now to make it more obvious.



Another Pokémon description that mentions routine details of the Pokémon's appearance instead of the actual clearly most noteworthy thing about the Pokémon: you go meticulously into where Groudon's body has spikes and razors, but fail to actually mention that it's dead, which is by far the most important thing about the image Edward is seeing. It should be crystal clear to us the moment it is to Edward that Groudon isn't moving and is lying limply in an awkward position with its arm just hanging there - that should be the focus of the description, rather than what Groudon generally looks like.


I think the description made it fairly obvious (though obviously it didn't) . As well as this, I tried to ease in the fact it was a) hurt and b) dead for effect. And we all know it's dead because of the bits before the chapters.




"Ladies and gentlemen" seems a bit overly formal here - you've been trying to show the anchorman is terrified, so using a phrase like "Ladies and gentlemen" doesn't seem like something he'd have the presence of mind to do.

The Ladies and Gentlemen bit is to make the reporter try to ready the audience. They say things like that when there is a severe news bulletin. He also hasn't talked for a while, so he has to make himself addressed again.



Having seen artists' impressions isn't a very good way to back up his conviction that this is the real Groudon - saying they were artists' impressions is drawing attention to the fact it probably wouldn't actually look quite like the pictures. This would work better if you said something like, "He'd seen pictures - only artists' impressions, but it was still unmistakeable that this was the real thing" - then the fact they're artists' impressions is more sensibly introduced as something of a counterpoint to his conviction.

He's thirteen, he'd lived his whole life seeing these pictures. To him, they were what Groudon was.





I think these ellipses aren't really helping you. Ellipses are meant to convey pauses, hesitation or trailing off; they're not magic wands that make your sentences more dramatic. "Groudon was... was... gone" works, implying he looks for a word and then emphasizing the one he finds; "Groudon was... was... gone..." just lessens the impact of the sentence by making it sound kind of uncertain.

Oops, italization doesn't carry over.

Anyway, thanks for the reviews, and I'll get onto the changes. TTFN!

Dragonfree
23rd January 2012, 10:04 PM
In a forest, in deep thought, on the first day of being a trainer a person can a) simply not see the sky and b) their mind is wondering too much.

Secondly, Birch said that they should try and make it to Odale by nightfall. Checking the sky is a way of pacing himself - too dark and they should hurry. Thought that was just logic there.
When it suddenly grows dark, it doesn't mean some change that happens in the sky that you won't notice if you aren't looking at it; it means a shadow is cast over everything and your whole surroundings grow darker. That's pretty noticeable - especially if you're worrying about trying to get somewhere before dark, while on foot so the weather matters. It would take a lot to be so distracted you don't notice it at all.


I thought it'd be pretty obvious that they were birds, fleeing. The fact they were 'flying into the distance' was a give away.

I think the description made it obvious. As well as this, I tried to ease in the fact it was a) hurt and b) dead for effect. And we all know it's dead because of the bits before the chapters.
The point isn't that I can't tell; the point is that the way you write these descriptions, you make them extremely vague on things they have every reason to be specific about. If Edward sees birds flying in the distance, it should be pretty immediately obvious to him that they're birds, and that means it should be obvious to the reader too - you should be describing them as birds, not as "spotted shapes". Saying "spotted shapes" implies Edward doesn't know what they are and makes the reader expect some sort of followup. Likewise, if Groudon's body is floating down a stream of lava, that description should sound very different from a description of a live Groudon emerging from the lava. By focusing on details of Groudon's general appearance - spikes here, razors there - instead of the really striking thing about what Edward is looking at - that a legendary is dead - you make it sound as if the fact Groudon is dead isn't particularly interesting or important, which is just bizarre. Imagine reading this description in a crime novel:


Mr. Smith was sitting in his chair inside his office, his back supported by his desk chair. He was a man in his fifties, balding, with a rounded face and a kind mouth. He wore a tasteful gray business suit, with a white shirt and red tie, slightly disheveled. His eyes were closed, his hands laid flat on the desk. Around his wrist was an expensive watch. There was a large bullet hole in the middle of his forehead, blood dripping down the side of his nose. A spray of blood covered the wall behind him.

Your description is more dramatic than that one, obviously, but it shows the same lack of regard for the natural way a POV character would actually take in the scene. If you walk in on Mr. Smith having been shot in the head, the first thing that's going to strike you is "oh god blood he's been shot", not the clothes he's wearing or how expensive his watch is or whether he's balding. Groudon being dead is slightly more subtle than Mr. Smith having been shot, but it should still be immediately off that it's just floating there and not moving and positioned awkwardly; failing to make Edward's narration react to that accordingly and having him just describe Groudon's appearance as if nothing were more natural instead makes it sound markedly off. Easing in facts for effect is done by describing reactions and details that take a moment to come together into a big picture (say, if you focused the description on Groudon's arm hanging suspended, the fact its head is still buried in the lava, and the fact it's not moving - things you mentioned in your description but only off-handedly), not by describing irrelevant things like Groudon's spikes instead.


The Ladies and Gentlemen bit is to make the reporter try to ready the audience. They say things like that when there is a severe news bulletin. He also hasn't talked for a while, so he has to make himself addressed again.
Then he should compose himself first, instead of being "struggling for breath". Readying the audience for it is something you do when you've calmed yourself down - if you're panicking yourself, readying the audience isn't your first priority.


... He's thirteen. He'd lived his whole life seeing these pictures. To him, they were what Groudon was.
Again, that's not the point. The point is if the narration brings up the fact the pictures he's seen were just artists' impressions, that is a counterpoint to his conviction that this is Groudon. If the pictures just are Groudon to him, he's just going to think "It looks just like the pictures" - if he thinks specifically of the fact they were only artists' impressions, that point explicitly casts doubt on their accuracy and makes it strange when the narration proceeds to act like it doesn't.

Agonist
24th January 2012, 11:06 PM
Well, I have to say, your latest chapter was written better than the first two, so it's nice to see that you've been taking Dragonfree's advice, and as a reader, it makes the story more enjoyable seeing that there are less grammar mistakes, and punctuation errors.

Getting on to the actual story itself, it's certainly captured my attention, as rarely do writers write about a legendary dying, and most people would assume that they're immortal (myself included), so this is certainly an unusual story. That being said, I'm intrigued to find out who this assassin is, and how it is that they have the ability to kill legendary pokemon. As for suggestions and corrections, Dragonfree has already pointed out most of them, so my only suggestion is to perhaps include a table of contents of sorts in the original post, where you link each chapter individually, so the reader can access them without having to search through a thread looking for them. Good luck!

Scaldaver
29th January 2012, 9:56 AM
Ok, sorry for the wait. Thanks goes to Dragonfree for the proofreading. Without her, this'd be a very poorly written fic.

Chapter 4
Travel

The murderer dived deeper and deeper through the murky water. Somewhere, it knew, was the second.

It paused, sensing a massive power above it. Then it was gone. The creature considered giving chase, but stayed where it was, turning its attention back to the eternal expanse of the icy depths.

It dived, deeper and deeper.
***

Edward didn't know how he wound up in the Pokemon Centre bedroom. He spent a few moments trying to remember as the rain lashed the windows of the small room. Then it came back to him.

Groudon...

He hoped it to have been a dream, but knew that it was all too real. Something had killed the very same pokemon that had once created the land. It was impossible to conceive anything which could have even damaged such a behemoth.

Could they still go on? With such rainfall, floods were bound to follow. Would it be safe to continue?

Edward sat up and shook his head, attempting to expel the thoughts from his head. No use thinking about all that now. It was his second day of trainerdom. He grinned at the thought, but wasn't as enthusiastic as the previous day.

Edward glanced out of the window at his side. The concrete on the roads was covered in about an inch of rain, and the downpour seemed harder than ever. Not a soul was in sight, and the occasional thunderbolt streaked across the sky. He jumped out of bed, and was unsurprised to find himself fully clothed. His clothes were slightly damp, but wearable. He slung his rucksack over his shoulders. He checked his pockets. Yep, the Pokeballs and Pokedex were still there. He left the room and quickly made his way back to the great entrance of the Pokemon Centre. It was much emptier since he had last been, and the bright orange and yellow tiles seemed less cheerful than they had originally been destined to be. Near the screen television, watching a news broadcast, was Nuria, fully dressed, a bowl of cereal in her hands. He walked over; she looked up.

“Hello, sleepyhead,” she muttered as she shovelled some chocolate-covered cereal into her mouth. She nodded her head towards the screen. “It's raining everywhere on Earth. Hoenn, Sinnoh, and even Unova are issuing flood warnings.” She took another mouthful and swallowed. “Are you hungry?”

Edward shook his head. He couldn't really stomach anything after last night. Nuria shrugged.

“Anything else?” Edward enquired.

“Yeah, something really strange. Some bright sparks from Kanto tried to get their fire types to use Sunny Day so their Pokemon's fire moves wouldn't be half as powerful. But it doesn't work. Neither does Abomasnow's ability or the move Hail. They reckon that without Groudon keeping the weather in balance, nothing else is powerful enough to.”

Edward nodded. It made sense, in a twisted kind of way.

“So,” she said, “when do you want to leave? Petalburg's on the other side of another forest, but the Centre's giving out anoraks, so we won't get as wet.” She finished her cereal, placed the bowl on the coffee table and stood up, making for the door. Edward suddenly remembered something.

“Just a second, I've got to heal my Mudkip. Where's the nurse?”

Nuria pointed to a large, bulky silver machine in the corner of the room. “Place your Pokedex and Pokeballs in there, and it should heal minor wounds. The nurse had to leave to help take care of some of the Pokemon which had evacuated the towns encased in rock.”

Edward approached the restoration machine - a large, bulky piece of equipment with a small screen, a green button and seven slots. As he did, he drew out his Pokedex and single full Pokeball. There was a rectangular grove he managed to fit the Pokedex into. A boy walked past, and caught a glance of the Pokemon encyclopedia.

“Pretty 'dex. Suits your eyes,” the stranger laughed as he walked past, causing Edward to grit his teeth. He cursed Nuria in his head, and then placed the minimized Pokeball into a hemispherical slot in the machine. He then pushed the large green button. The machine screen glowed yellow for a second, beeped, and ejected the Pokeball and Pokedex. He walked back to Nuria at the entrance to the Centre. There was a large tub of transparent anoraks by the door. They fitted one on each and walked out into the town.

Vicious gales matched by cruel cloudburst started to tear at the trainers as they sloshed through the ground-water. Edward cursed under his breath, but it was lost in the wind. His feet were already soaked. He looked up to view the surroundings he had not taken in during his previous detour. The thinly spread out wooden buildings rattled in the wind, natural spaces of grassland becoming marshes under the deluge. More lightning forked the sky, blinding him momentarily.

“Why are we travelling in this weather?” Edward shouted over the wind to Nuria, his voice just carrying over the gust.

“What would we gain by staying?” Nuria shrieked back. Edward had no answer. Instead, something occurred to him.

“Hey! You know Petalburg Forest?” Edward roared.

“Yeah...” called Nuria.

“It's a denser forest than yesterday's!” His voice began to get hoarse. “Maybe the wind and rain aren't as bad!”

“What?” Nuria bellowed back. Edward just shut up, and they continued to struggle upwind toward the distant forest.

As they neared, Edward spotted an old man blocking their direct path a few metres ahead. He stood in front of a natural opening to the woods, hunched, supported by a walking stick. His wrinkled face was mainly obscured by a long grey beard which whirled in the wind. He was encased in a large warm looking coat. Beside him a small child was sitting against a tree. No, not a small child, Edward corrected himself as he drew closer and the creature became clearer. Edward had spent enough time studying Pokedexes to know an Abra when he saw one. As they drew close to the man, who had a slight hunchback, he drew himself up and addressed them.

“Halt!” The old man wheezed. Nuria ignored him and tried to step past. The old man moved into her way, causing her to jump back. Under her hood she glared at the elderly man, who for all the world seemed not to care.

“I'm an official Pokemon league representative,” the man grunted over the wind. “I'm here to warn people against the vicious Luxio packs and marshes caused by the rain. I offer Teleportation to the other side with Poof here.”

Nuria glanced at Edward, unsure. Sure, they had heard the horrible abduction stories of children stolen with Teleporting Pokemon. But, if it was their only way...

“Obviously we can't trust him,” Nuria began, leaning in towards Edward to avoid being overheard, “he's obviously senile. He named an Abra 'Poof' for Pete's sake!” Edward nodded, appraising the old man with a scrutinizing eye. There was nothing too off about him, but still... There was no way to tell what was going on in his mind. Or was there...

After a brief mutter to Nuria she had released her newly caught Ralts onto the wet ground in front of her, where it immediately started shivering. Nuria leaned in.

“Sorry about this. I promise to talk to you and introduce you to myself later, but could you just check that this guy's... authentic?”

Ralts got the hint and turned its green head to the old human. After a second of appraisal, it mumbled something quietly to Nuria so that Edward could not hear over the din of the wind and rain. Nuria nodded and recalled the Ralts. She leaned in to Edward.

“He checks out,” she muttered. “Apparently his Abra put in a good word for him, and he's not showing any emotion that would lead us to be suspicious.” She then raised her voice so the decrepit could hear them. “Fine, you can take us.”

The man nodded and turned to his psychic type. It rose from where it was apparently sleeping and hobbled over to the humans. It reached up and gripped Edward's hand tightly with its own. It offered a hand to Nuria. She glared at it for a second, then took it firmly.

Suddenly they were in a heavily concreted city. Huge structures jutted out of the pavement, bright grey in contrast to the black sky. The road had filled with running water; a nearby car seemed in trouble of being carried off. Edward turned and saw he was up against a large building with a red roof. Upon the door was a laminated sign, dampened and just about readable - 'To all trainers, there has been damage to the centre's roof. This has caused flooding. Nurse out. If healing or beds are needed, come to Petalburg Forest, Petalburg entrance.'

Edward turned back to the Abra, whose hand he was still holding tightly.

“Could we please have a lift to the entrance of Petalburg Forest?” Edward enquired, voice raised. The bipedal fox nodded, and suddenly the buildings and pavement were replaced by trees and saturated soil. In front of them the forest seemed extremely densely packed. The Abra detached itself as Nuria started forward. Edward turned to the Abra to thank it, but it had already Teleported away.

He pulled his hood more over his face, for it had begun to get wet, and pursued Nuria into the dense woods.

The further in they travelled the less the rain fell on them. As well as this, the dense canopy prevented the harsh winds from freezing them. Shortly after entering, the two felt comfortable enough to remove their hoods.

“So we've just missed out Petalburg altogether?” Nuria asked.

“Well, the Gym there is the fifth in the region, so its Pokemon will be far stronger than ours,” Edward explained. Nuria nodded in acceptance.

After several minutes of walking they stumbled upon a large clearing. In this clearing were multiple emergency tents, several Pokemon trainers, a mini restoration machine and a woman with a white apron and long pink hair, nervously pacing back and forth. Nurse Joy. She approached them, and as she neared Edward he could see the bags under her eyes.

“Are you two trainers?”

Nuria said they were.

“Then you see that tent over there?” she asked, pointing over to one of the smaller, red tents at the side of the clearing, packed against a bush. “I'm afraid that's the only one we have to spare at the moment. You don't mind sharing, do you?” Edward reddened slightly, but before he could answer Nuria did.

“That's fine.” She caught sight of Edward's face. “Oh, come on, Eddy! We've had sleep-overs before. What's the difference now?” And she went off toward the small tent. He could have pointed out that they had been seven, or that they had had a whole room to sleep in, not a small tent. Instead, knowing that he couldn't win this argument, he turned to the nurse and thanked her. She smiled slightly but appeared to be too fatigued to show more emotion.

When Edward appeared at the mouth of the tent, Nuria was already in, unpacking a sleeping bag from her rucksack. She alone took up about three quarters of the room. Edward sighed, then grinned as he had an idea.

“Nuria, I'm going to go off and train Mudkip for a while. I've had him for twelve hours and haven't raised him a level yet.”

Nuria nodded and replied, “You probably won't find anything this deep into the woods. But yeah, I think after this I'll raise my Ralts some levels; it's only level four. It'll be damned hard to train, with it only knowing Growl and all.” Edward grinned, stood up and made his way into the dense foliage. Suddenly Nuria called to him. “And remember to try and catch a second Pokemon before a Treecko trainer finds you!” Edward sighed and continued walking. He really hadn't given it much thought.

After wondering around in search for a minute, Edward came across another Zigzagoon, stuffing its face in a berry bush. Oh well, he thought, beggars can't be choosers. As he approached he threw Mudkip's Pokeball into the air, and the mud fish flew out in a discharge of white energy. The ball fell nearby on the floor, and Edward hurriedly picked it up. The Zigzagoon turned to face the water type and crouched into a fighting position. It looked bigger and stronger than the last one he had fought, but Edward was still all confidence.

“Mudkip,” he called, “use Tackle!” Mudkip ran at the raccoon, but with blinding fast speed it dodged out of the way.

“Growl!” he shouted again, determined to use the same tactics as last time. But instead of ramming the mud fish, the dog stood, wagging its short spiky tail at Mudkip. As it did so, Mudkip Growled at the Zigzagoon. The Zigzagoon flinched as the Mudkip stood up slightly straighter, distracted by the tail. Edward saw the danger, and, as the raccoon's back was turned, ordered another Tackle. It hit this time, and the Zigzagoon fell forward, motionless to the floor, not breathing. Not to be taken in by this ruse again, another Tackle was ordered, cracking something within the raccoon. It whimpered through its teeth. Taking it for knocked out, Edward nearly recalled the Mudkip, but the Zigzagoon had jumped up and rammed him with a Headbutt. Mudkip went flying.

“Mudkip, get up!” Edward called in anxiety. He couldn't risk his only Pokemon being taken out. Mudkip stood slowly, quivering on its four legs. Something in Edward's pocket beeped, and from it he withdrew the bright pink Pokemon encyclopedia. It was flashing yellow on the small screen. On it was written-

“MUDKIP levelled up. MUDKIP is now level SIX. MUDKIP learned MUD-SLAP!”

Edward gasped in astonishment. Mudkip levelled up? He must be trying hard, Edward thought. He decided to try an experiment.

“Use Mud-slap, Mudkip!” Edward commanded. Mudkip paused for a second, then turned and with slapped the ground with its fin. The earth flew at the Zigzagoon, becoming wetter as it did. The mud struck the Zigzagoon in the face and the raccooon starting to panic as its vision became obscured.

“Tackle!” Edward called. The blind raccoon was caught between Mudkip and a group of trees. Mudkip closed the distance in seconds. The Zigzagoon was sent flying again, ramming the nearby tree. It did not get up again.

Edward sighed in relief, then shouted over to his Pokemon.

“Good one!” he called, expecting Mudkip to return the enthusiasm. But instead he stood stock-still, still in his combat position. It was glaring at the tree, growling quietly. Edward could hear a feint buzzing noise.

“Mud-” Edward began, but something shot from the lower branches of the tree. A small object zoomed around the air, gaining speed, moving far too quickly for Edward's eyes to keep track of. It dashed into Mudkip, and he was thrown to the floor, blood flowing from a gash on its side. Edward's heart stopped momentarily, then he reasserted himself.

“Mudslap... whatever it is, Mudkip,” he shrieked as the object whirled round and round and round. Mudkip slapped the ground with his fin-tail again, and thin waves of mud flew from the ground at the object. Every single bit missed as the creature appeared to speed up further, dodging the mud with ease.

“Keep on Mud-slapping!” Edward cried, no other plan in his head. He knew they should run, but would it let them?

Mud flew into all directions, but still the object seemed unstoppable. With a roar of “Mud!” Mudkip slapped the earth again, and a massive glob of sticky mud was sent flying towards the creature, at a speed much higher than the previous attacks. The object whirled away to dodge, but a small globule of stray mud caught it in mid air, causing it to fall to the ground.

The creature resembled the Nincada it had once been, but with gold plating on its back and a grey underbelly. Its feeler-like appendages had kept their shape upon evolution, and the small green wings had transformed into larger, translucent wings. The two wings stood erect, bound together by mud. It was wiggling them frantically, but to no avail. Edward recognised it, but panic clouded his mind.

“Tackle it! Quick!” Edward shouted, trying to make up for lost time. As Mudkip rammed it repeatedly, Edward took out his Pokedex and pointed it at the creature. It spoke in the feminine robotic voice -

“Ninjask, the ninja Pokemon. Evolves from Nincada at level twenty. Ninjask are rumoured to be so fast that they can dodge any attack. It can also become seemingly invisible from this speed. Ninjask is the fastest Pokemon currently on Earth.”

Edward narrowed his eyes. Fastest Pokemon? Faster than Grovyle and Sceptile? Edward's stomach leapt even before he read the writing on the top left hand side of the small screen.

“Type – Bug/Flying.”

Edward gasped. The perfect combo to take down any grass type. Edward grinned as he reached his decision. This was the Pokemon for him.

As Mudkip rammed the bug for the umpteenth time, the ninja became unstuck and flew up into the air again, just as Edward reached into his pocket for an empty Pokeball. He cursed.

“Mudslap it again before it can escape!” Edward screamed in excitement. The Ninjask hadn't had time to reach top speed yet, and was again covered in mud. This time, though, its wings didn't glue up. It darted to the trees.

“No you don't!” Edward gasped before throwing the Pokeball up towards the tree the Ninjask had flown towards. Ninjask sped into the thickly-leaved tree, the Pokeball sailing in less than a second after. There was an inhuman shriek within the tree,a flash of red, and the Pokeball fell to the ground. It wobbled once. Twice. Three times.

It clicked.




Chapter 5 - Zubat (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14112913&postcount=21)

overlordmewtwo
29th January 2012, 2:41 PM
He just captured the fastest non-legendary Pokemon! Good show, Edward!

And good job, Scaldaver. Good to see you put your signature Pokemon into the story. I look forward to seeing this continue. And I still look forward to discovering why the killer did what he did.

Donphan Dude
4th February 2012, 5:06 PM
Now then, the great Scaldaver making spelling errors! Oh the horror! Great story mate!

Scaldaver
5th February 2012, 6:30 PM
Hey, sorry for the wait on this one. Next week I'll be Skiing in Austria, so I won't be able to write or post. Oh, and from now on please PM me the grammar errors.And without further adieu, enjoy!

Chapter 5
Zubat

It faced the great horizontal wall of sedimentary rock. It could feel the ancient power pulsing through the molecules. So close. Its prey was so very close.

The creature focused and started creating the chasm. Somewhere, it detected resistance. Not enough to be a nuisance, but enough for confirmation.

Whatever was down there did not want to be found.

With good reason.

***


Edward's heart almost leapt into his mouth. The perfectly smooth sphere had never seemed more beautiful. Edward staggered over to the ball and picked it up gently, admiring the complete roundness of the object.

And within, of course, his key to battling invincibility.

Euphoria and excitement suddenly built up, and Edward found himself whooping and punching the air.

“Yes!” he yelled. “Did you see that, Mudkip? You were brilliant! You were really-” Edward's cry was cut short as he saw the mud fish.

He was quaking, his small legs wobbling, struggling under the weight of his body. The laceration on his side was still seeping dark blood. His large eyes were losing their focus. He started to fall.

“No! Mudkip!” Edward roared in horror as his starter Pokemon collapsed to the ground. Shakily, he gripped Mudkip's Pokeball out of his pocket, and recalled it.

He stared at the balls in his two hands. One brought him so much joy, whilst the other terrified him completely. After a second he snapped out of his daze. Mudkip would be fine. Pokeballs acted as a life-support machine. Pokemon trapped inside were basically frozen in time. They felt, they thought and they experienced nothing, unless they were poisoned, of course.

Now comfortable that his water type was fine, Edward grinned triumphantly at the other ball. A Ninjask. His first capture. Then another part of him – Wait until Nuria sees this.

Suddenly Edward found himself running full-pelt back toward the camp-site. Anticipation kept him from getting tired, as well as helping him to manoeuvre around the many trees. Soon he saw the feint outlines of the tents against the bushes and other foliage, and slowed his pace. As he entered the clearing he made for the little red tent. Looking inside, he couldn't see anything, bar Nuria's unloaded sleeping bag. Edward groaned.

“Because I was here first! Got a problem with that?” Came the scathing growl from the other side of the clearing. Nuria.

He hurried over to the other side, to see Nuria confronting a short, bristling boy in front of the regeneration machine, obviously fighting over who was to use it next. His face was angry, but Nuria's was already beyond livid.

“Says who?” demanded the boy. He had to stand up on his tip-toes to get his face to reach hers. Both had limbs shaking in anger. Edward knew it was time to step in, as he had so many times before. He managed to worm his way betwixt the two, pushing Nuria away, and facing the boy.

“I'm ever so sorry,” he began, as though reciting a well rehearsed script, “for everything she has said and done, she does not mean it, and when she has cooled off she too will apologise.” Nuria hissed behind him, but stopped resisting. The boy too looked significantly less angry. Edward spread his arms out in front of him in a calming gesture.

“Now, use the machine, you'll both apologise, and we will go our separate ways.” Edward felt the tension in the air diffuse as the boy nodded stiffly. He turned to the machine, inserted two Pokeballs and a lime green Pokedex, waited a second then removed them. He caught Edward's eye, then turned to the seething female.

“Sorry,” he mumbled, eyes now on the floor. Edward brought up his leg back and caught Nuria's shin. She hissed again, but too mumbled an apology. The boy walked away, toward the group of tents. Instantly, Nuria turned on him.

“I said it once, I'll say it again – stop babying me!”

Edward could only grin. She'd calm down soon enough. As she walked off to use the machine, a tentative Nurse Joy walked over to him.

“I'm sorry I couldn't be any help. I haven't -” she yawned loudly, “-had any sleep since last night. Anyway, I think I'd better man the restoration machine from now on.” She hobbled over to the side of the bulky machine. Edward could only wonder how she had managed to get the bulky thing there.

Edward saw Nuria walk over to him. She looked sufficiently calmed down.

“Little brat,” she muttered. “Tried to push in.” Edward couldn't help being sceptical. The day Nuria got in a fight she didn't start, the world was sure to implode.

Edward grinned and reached into his pocket. He maximised it and held it out proudly in front of him. Nuria raised her eyebrows.

“Finally,” she said. “So, what is it?”

Edward intensified his grin of superiority.

“You'll see. I've just got to heal it.” He turned toward the Nurse and passed her two Pokeballs.

“It gave Mudkip a nasty slash,” he explained to Nuria. Nurse Joy took the balls, and turned to the machine, blocking his view of the small screen.

“What do you think of my first caught Pokemon, Nurse Joy?” Edward enquired, a note of strained innocence in his voice.

“Well,” Nurse Joy said in sluggish surprise, “this is a very unusual first capture.” Edward grinned as Nuria raised her eyebrows. “Very fast too. Covers Mudkip's weaknesses nicely.” Edward's grin only grew larger and larger. “It's nice to see a trainer who actually trains a Zubat nowadays.”

“Ninjask.” Edward corrected.

“No...” Nurse Joy answered, “It's definitely a Zubat. Ninjask are impossible to catch; they're too fast for Pokeballs.”

“B-but,” stuttered Edward, his chest hollowing, “but, I saw-” Suddenly it all fell into place. He turned cold as realisation coursed through him. Nuria laughed at his gaping mouth.

He hadn't seen Ninjask get caught. Edward played through the scene in his head. Ninjask flew into the tree. The Pokeball followed it into the tree. A screech, a flash of red...

But he hadn't actually seen the process of capturing take place. Shakily, Edward received the Pokeballs and Pokedex the nurse handed to him, and, in autopilot, walked over to the tent. He sat down on the damp grass in front of it, resting the Pokeball on his lap. Nuria came and sat next to him, an ill-concealed grin just trying to infect her entire face.

“Why you so glum?” She asked, nearly breaking into giggles. “What's so bad about Zubats anyway?”

“You know!” Edward shot back, thoroughly irritated.

“Know what?” She asked, her grin slowly growing in size.

“Because...” Edward flailed, lost for words. “Because...Because everybody has a Zubat.”

“Now, that's not true,” Nuria continued, managing to stifle a bark of laughter.

“No!” Edward amended. “It's that everybody everywhere can catch a Zubat, but they don't, because they're so common and they believe that everyone else will catch one!”

“Yeah...Sucks to be you!” and as though waiting for the best opportunity, the laughter came, causing Nuria to roll onto the back, eyes watering, rocking back and forth.

“Thanks a load,” Edward muttered vengefully.

“You – you should have -” She burst into a new fit of giggles, rolling onto her front, kicking the floor. “You should have seen your face,” she giggled, “when she said Zu-Zubat!”

Edward ground his teeth. He rose, leaving Nuria to her maniacal hysterics.

Stomping into the forest, he drew his Pokedex from his pocket. Clicking the Pokeball icon on the top-right hand of the screen, two small Pokemon avatars appeared. The small blue creature resembled Mudkip, whilst the other was such a dark blue and purple that its outline was very hard to make out. He pressed the creature the touch screen.

Suddenly the picture blew up, and Edward saw the dark blue ovoid of a body, the inner of dark purple wings and two tail-like appendages that shot out like spikes at the end. Instead of eyes upon its head were two large, almost conical ears above a gaping, four-fanged mouth. Frustration coursing through his body, he selected it again, and read the information on the screen:

“Name:Zubat.

Gender: Male

Type: Flying/Poison

Level -”

Edward almost choked on his gasp.

“Level: 7”

Edward stared confoundedly at the screen. So, not only did he miss out on capturing the fastest Pokemon on Earth, he also missed out catching a level twenty-plus Pokemon and instead had attained a level seven.

“Moves:Leech Life, Supersonic.”

Edward cursed inwardly. Not even a strong move in sight.

He drew the bat's Pokeball from his pocket, mulling over what to do. Release it? The suggestion sounded absurd. What kind of trainer released his second ever Pokemon? He threw the ball gently in his hand, thinking it over.

Zubat were fast, that much he knew. And Nurse Joy was right; it did cover Mudkip's weaknesses quite nicely.

But still, the other part of him groaned, to have such unrivalled speed... And it seemed like fate that he should have caught the Ninjask...

On the other hand, he reasoned, he knew Golbat and Crobat were more hardy than Ninjask. Only a Mud-slap managed to disable the ninja momentarily.

Confidence slowly started to well within him. Sure, Zubat weren't the most unique Pokemon in the world, but unique typing might come in handy... And, according to the nurse, Ninjask were impossible to catch. Edward began to grin. Maybe Zubat wasn't so bad...

Edward threw his new Pokemon's ball into the air, and caught it as it fell. From the ball appeared the Zubat in a glow of white. He flapped quickly and desperately to keep himself airborne. It made a screeching sound, and turned to face Edward. There was a moment of silence, which was then broken like the bat, screeching in its own, high pitched language;

“Bravest and most noble of trainers, pray tell, was it by thine hand I was captured?”

The human was a too startled to reply. Was his Pokemon communication off?

“Noble sir, I beseech thee, didst thou capture me with thine fine hand during my rest?”

Edward nodded shakily. Since when did Zubats appear to speak old-English?

“Jolly good! I commend you, good sir, on thine great intelligence, thine great cunning and nobility! I must apologise most graciously for my poor speech, for we Zubats have rarely chance to communicate with humans as deserving as thineself.”

Edward was lost for words. Sure, talking to Pokemon was a two-way thing. The Pokemon had to have a basic grasp of civilised communication of the listener for humans to be on speaking terms with them. But still, surely Pokemon could be understood without such... specific speech character? Perhaps Zubats don't usually communicate by normal means. Of course, Edward thought, Zubats use echolocation for communication, therefore their normal talk must be... out-dated, especially if they rarely met humans. Edward pondered on how to address it.

“Erm,” he began, “so, it's okay that I caught you while you were sleeping?”

“Why, kind sir, hadst thou caught me any other way I wouldst take you for a simpleton! The element of surprise is one's most advantageous... advantage. Obviously you viewed my magnificent frame from the ground and felt thine desire overtake thee. To demonstrate my humble affection for thee I shalt train with thee.”

“Good.” Edward said, at a loss for any other words. Then he realised the full meaning. “I mean, brilliant! Yeah, I can't wait to train with thee – you – too!” He grinned widely. Somewhere in the back of his mind, however, he jotted down a mental note never to mention the Ninjask to the bat.

“Jolly good, jolly good,” the Zubat muttered. “Know, shall we make battle now or later?”

“Later,” Edward decided. He held up the ball and returned the Zubat. Hands in pockets, he walked back into the clearing. Nuria was in the same place, looking extremely thrilled, but more calmed down. She raised her eyebrows as he approached.

“You look happy. Have you released the Zubat?” She asked.

“Nope.” Edward replied. “I think I'll keep it with me.”

Nuria raised her eyebrows further.

“Seriously? Oh, God, you're serious.” She thought for a second. “Want a Pokemon battle?” She asked.

Edward grinned and shook his head. Did she really take him for an idiot?

“Yeah, that'd be fun. Your Chikorita could Razor Leaf Mudkip to death, and Ralts could-” He broke off. “How's Ralts coming along, actually?”

Nuria grimaced.

“Proving dead hard to train. The best that I've done is made it use Growl against a group of Wurmple while they pounded it with Tackle. It finally learned Confusion, but was too shaken up to use it.” She spat on the floor. “Honestly, what's the point of getting Ralts to level six if it's just gonna fail on me?”

Edward said nothing. She was wound up. He'd forgive her for this lapse in Pokemon respectability for now.

“How about Mudkip versus Ralts? That sounds more fair.”

Nuria grinned, rising.

“Sure.” She narrowed her eyebrows. “What's he doing?”

Edward followed he gaze, and saw the boy from earlier approaching them. When he reached them, he stood straight, rolling his eyes.

“Nurse Joy told me to tell you that the Rustburo Gym Leader is coming here tonight because the north part of the Route 104 has flooded.” He started to walk away.

“Thank you!” Edward called behind him. He nodded, but didn't stop walking away. Edward turned his head back towards Nuria.

“You could have said-”

“Shut your face,” she growled. She thought for a while. “Maybe we should train separately. For the Gym Leader.”

Edward shrugged. Extra training might be useful.

“Yeah,” he said, “It's a rock type gym, isn't it?”

Nuria nodded. Edward smiled. Sure, Zubat would have a problem with that, but Mudkip would take down any rock type thrown at him.

“See you later,” Nuria said, and walked off out of the clearing. Edward rose too, and made off in the other direction out of the clearing. Knowing that Mudkip was a level lower than Zubat, he released the mud fish. After the white glow dispelled, Mudkip stood, eyes drooped, tearful.

“Sorry,” he mumbled, bowing his blue head. Edward raised his eyebrows.

“Sorry? Why are you sorry?”

“Because,” he closed his eyes, a tear rolling down his orange cheek, “I got knocked out by a measly Scratch from a Ninjask. I'm sorry. I don't deserve you.” He collapsed on the floor, sobbing. Edward gaped.

“Don't cry!” Edward demanded, at a loss for anything else to say. After hanging around made-of-bricks Nuria all his life, he hadn't any real experience with crying. He kneeled into sitting down in front of Mudkip, and placed a reassuring hand on his head, next to his fin. He tensed under Edward's touch, but continued to cry. Edward sat down. Mudkip buried his head in Edward's lap.

“I'm – I'm too weak!” Mudkip cried. Edward sighed.

“You realise that was a level twenty-plus Ninjask, and you're, at the moment, only level six?”

The Mudkip nodded shakily, taking shallow, ragged breaths.

“Would you like to train some more?” Edward asked.

Mudkip gasped and shot his head up.

“You'll still have me? You, you won't replace me with Ninjask?”

Edward ginned.

“Of course not. By the way,” he added, “turns out we didn't capture Ninjask. Turns out a Zubat was sleeping in the tree, and...”

Mudkip nodded, visibly more cheerful.

“So, shall we find another battle?”

Mudkip nodded excitedly, together they stood up, and made their way deeper into the forest.



Pokemon Language Explanation Time

There are two main ways in which Pokemon communicate; by their movements and expressions, and by tension on syllables they say out loud (E.g, Pi-KA-chu, ROOaaRRRR!).

Zubats, as a rule, speak to each other in high pitch screeches, too high for humans to hear. So, when they deign to speak our language, they have to revert to using traditional Pokemon-style communication. As Zubats rarely communicate with other species, they very rarely have to talk this way, meaning their speech has not evolved at the same pace others have.

Now, if you can speak a language very well, the only way there can be miscommunication is if the other person speaks in an outdated way. Hence why Zubat appears to speak old English: it is the closest translation to english that it is saying in Pokemon. On top of that, it speaks old English badly, to emphasize it doesn't speak that way often.







Next Chapter (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14243022&postcount=24)

overlordmewtwo
5th February 2012, 7:40 PM
Dang it! No Ninjask! Oh well... there's always next time! Good luck on finding that Ninjask and getting "revenge" by catching it, Edward!

And since when could Zubat speak in a human language?!

Scaldaver
5th February 2012, 8:25 PM
And since when could Zubat speak in a human language?!

Oops, I guess I should have made it more obvious. It is still speaking Zubat (Screeching noises) but the closest translation is old English. I'll edit it to see how to make it stand out more.

Scaldaver
2nd March 2012, 7:27 PM
Sorry for the mahoosive delay; I've been soooooo busy. Thanks for your patience. This one's rated PG-13 for violence and mildly violent description. And without further ado...



Chapter 6


Gym Battle

The murderer descended the chasm. Light was non-existent in this part of the ocean, yet it could still see. There pressure was enough to fold any lesser creature.

Time was immaterial. Sooner or later, its goal would be completed.

More Time elapsed. The creature narrowed its eyes.

Infinite miles down, a faint glow of red...
***

The rest of the morning, and most of the afternoon, was spent training Mudkip and Zubat. Mudkip had managed to take down a Slakoth, three Wurmple and a small group of Poochyena (not at the same time, they agreed to wait whilst Edward healed Mudkip), and thus by the end of the session had reached level eleven, and learned Water Gun. After a brief lunch of soup, Edward started training Zubat.

Zubat was proving slightly more difficult to level up. It wasn't that it couldn't beat any wild Pokemon, on the contrary, it managed to take down more than Mudkip. No, instead it was simply as though the bat needed to take more down to get stronger. So, even though it knocked-out twice as many than Mudkip, it was only raised to level twelve. On top of this, it had learned Astonish, though by the time he had learned the move, Zubat had no enemies which it would be effective on. At the end of the session, Edward met up in the clearing with a rather irate Nuria next to the regeneration machine.

“Stupid Ralts can barely do anything,” she vented. “She starts quaking the second I send her out.”

“What level's she?” Edward enquired. Nuria stuck her tongue out.

“Only level eleven. Not as good as Chikorita, but they're both fairly abysmal.”

Edward's grin froze. “What level's Chikorita?” he asked. Nuria winced.

“Promise not to laugh?” She paused for a moment. “Level fifteen.”

Edward's eyebrows shot up. Fifteen? Nuria grimaced.

“Don't look so high and mighty! What levels are your Pokemon?”

Edward mumbled in reply.

“Sorry?” Nuria asked.

“Eleven and twelve,” he mumbled again. Now it was her turn to raise her eyebrows.

“Seriously? Wow, someone's been slacking off.”

Edward flashed her a look of annoyance.

“It's not my fault!” He defended. “Zubat's really hard to train. It takes him forever to level up.”

“Yeah, yeah, whatever.” Nuria grinned. “The nurse said that the Gym Leader will arrive soon. We've all drawn up a list to see who goes first.” She paused for a moment. “It's first me, then you.” Edward briefly considered how much violence she had to threaten to get her way. He decided not to think about it. Suddenly he realized; he was about to take on his first Gym Leader before he had had a proper battle. He looked over at Nuria. Amazing Nuria with her level fifteen Chikorita. There'd be no way he could beat her at the moment. He looked around the clearing, and was surprised not to see any trainers. They must be training, he thought. Smart them.

“Hey, Nuria, I think I might go out and find some more battles. To train Mudkip,” he explained. Nuria shrugged and walked off out of the clearing.

After quickly healing his Pokemon, Edward hurried out of the clearing into the densely packed forest. He felt his heart beat starting to pop out of his chest as he thought about the battle he was soon to have.

Okay, he thought, what do I know about Gym Leaders? They are themed, this one has rock types. They normally have about three Pokemon each. Edward's heart skipped a beat. How was he going to take on three rock types with only an under-levelled Mudkip and a Zubat? Sure, Zubat's Supersonic was really handy, but still... And even with just Mudkip, there was only so much it could do against three Pokemon...

Edward took the bright pink Pokedex from his pocket. Clicking on a little book icon on the top left hand of the screen. Suddenly a list of all the Pokemon of Hoenn popped up. Edward bit his lip as he slowly scrolled through. What he really needed was a Pokemon which could take out rock types. Lotad? No – he already had a water type. Seedot? That might work. He pressed the Seedot avatar on the screen. It blew up to the acorn shaped Pokemon with two little egg shape feet. He pressed the 'Area' button. Johto. Damn, it must have migrated away in the Shift. He pressed the back button twice. What else?

Wingull? No, he still already had a water type. Surskit? Damn, what's with all the water types? He thought. He continued scrolling. He stopped. Shroomish. Grass type, great against rock types. He clicked it, enlarging the pixelated image to show the light brown mushroom – shaped Pokemon, which had pale green dots on its head and a small brownish skirt of semicircles. Edward grinned. It looked stern, but cool in its own way. He pressed the image; Location: Petalburg Forest. Edward's heart leapt. He could catch Shroomish, raise it a few levels, then easily take out the rock Gym.

He grinned, and was about the slide the Pokedex back into his pocket before he saw something. The small pixelated image of Ninjask at the very bottom. And above it, a smaller, greyer image. Edward maximised the Nincada, enlarging the pale grey body, thin, spindly antennae, large brown claws and small green wings. A bug and ground type.

Edward was torn. On one hand, he could catch Shroomish and almost definitely beat the rock Gym. On the other hand, he could catch a part ground type... which could perhaps know a single ground type move... when he put it like that, the comparison seemed so unfair, but when Nincada evolved...

Edward had an idea. Whichever he saw first, he would catch. Yeah, he'd let fate decide.

Caught up in his thoughts, Edward realised all of a sudden that he was completely lost. Looking around, panicked, he found that he did not recognise where he had come from, or where he was now. He heard a cough behind him. Edward whirled around, and saw the boy from earlier, the boy who had had the blazing argument with Nuria.

“Are you lost?” he asked. Edward nodded. The boy took a few steps forward, grinning. “The camp's over there,” he said, pointing to the right of where he stood, to Edward's left.

“Thanks,” Edward replied. He made to start, and then thought of something.

“I'm sorry, what's your name again?” Edward asked.

The boy smiled.

“James,” he replied. “And yours?”

“Edward,” he said. The two shook hands.

“So, James,” Edward continued, “how well do you know Petalburg Forest?”

“Pretty well,” James replied. “Why?”

“It's just that, well, do you know where there is either a group of Nincada or Shroomish around here?”

James scratched his chin.

“You'll be hard done by to find any wild Shroomish around here,” he said, “because they've been hunted by the recent Murkrow and Honchcrow in the forest. Nincada, on the other hand, are much more common. I know where one of their burrows is. It's not too far from here. I can lead you to it if you want.” The boy started to walk away, motioning Edward to follow.

Edward smiled and followed. Soon they arrived at a small clearing, a small chasm in the middle of the tall grass. Dark grey earth brimmed the chasm, making it resemble a giant mole-hill. Edward could make out the grass faintly rustling. As he started forward, James held an arm out to stop him. Edward looked at him questioningly, and James pointed to the trees.

“Ninjask sentries,” James explained. “They'll attack if you step onto their boundary. Try and tempt one over here if you want to catch one.” He began to walk away, his job now complete. Edward would have thanked him, but his attention was completely focused on the shifting patches of grass. How was he going to attract a Nincada?

“Um,” he called. In front of him the grass became motionless. “I'm a trainer. I'd like to train a Nincada. Any volunteers?”

After a few tentative seconds the grass began to rustle again. The rustling approached him, then, from the grass, popped the grey head of a Nincada. Then another. And another. Edward grinned.

“You are a trainer, yes?” asked the middle Nincada. Edward nodded. “Then I shall join you,” said the Nincada.

“No, I shall become stronger,” said another.

“No, it shall be I,” said the third. Edward raised his eyebrows. Were the Nincadas fighting over him? In front of his very eyes the petty squabble turned into a full-blown argument. The Nincadas began insulting each other, threatening violence. Edward decided it was time to step in.

“Please stop arguing,” Edward moaned. All three of the insects turned to look at him. He half blushed, and continued. “Who here is the strongest. Be honest.”

The Nincadas looked at each other, and one stepped forward. Edward pointed his Pokedex at it. Level 10.

“I am strongest of us three.” The Nincada said, bowing slightly. “I prayed at the alter just yesterday. These two have yet to pray.”

Edward's smile faltered.

“What alter?”

“Us Nincada, we pray at our sacred alter. Once we do this, we can Dig, and expand the colony.”

Edward thought for a while.

“This alter, what does it look like?” Edward asked. The Nincada bowed its head.

“Our most sacred artefact, a disk stolen from humans by our ancestors, rest upon this mound. Once we pray and kiss the disk, we gain our digging ability.”

Edward raised his eyebrows. A TM stolen from humans? A reusable one? Must be from Unova, Edward thought. Until recently, Edward knew, TMs had been of one use only, but since Unova released their TM making secrets to the world, everybody had caught on.

“So, you're level ten and you know Dig. You're perfect.” Edward pulled an empty Pokeball from his pocket, and held it in front of the Nincada. It tapped it with a feeler, turned into red plasma and got absorbed into the ball. It didn't even shake once.

***

Edward found himself quickly back at the camp. Nuria had beat him there, and glared at him with crossed arms.

“Rocky, the Gym Leader just got here, and I'm about to battle him. You were nearly late.” And with that she walked away. Edward followed, laughing.

"Wait, the Gym Leader's called Rocky? And he has rock type Pokemon? Wow, that's awefully coincidental."

"Shut up, Eddy." Nuria said, "Surely you knew that already? You've lived your whole life in Hoenn. The Gym Leader's children are named after the type of the Pokemon they will raise; it's a tradition of sorts. A stupid tradition, but still tradition."

Edward would have persued the argument, but they had arrived at another clearing, although this one had a chalk square drawn crudely on the floor. A small crowd had formed around the arena. At the opposite of the clearing was a tall, muscular man, wearing a tight sleeveless, brown shirt. He wore ripped brown trousers that showed off his muscular calves. Obscuring his face was a small sheet of paper. He removed it, revealing his round, shaven face. His bald head resembled a smooth pebble.

“Are you Nuria?” The man bellowed across the square. Nuria nodded, reaching into her pocket and drawing out a Pokeball.

“I only have two Pokemon,” Nuria called. “Is that a problem?”

“'Course not,” he bellowed back. “Three versus two it is then!” And before Nuria could respond he threw his Pokeball into the air. From the white glow a near-spherical dark blue ball of rock appeared, a yellow depression in the centre with a black dot in the middle that resembled an eye. Two brown segments of rock resembled feet at the bottom, and a similar rock jutted from the top. Edward raised his eyebrows. What the hell was that? In a flash he had his Pokedex pointed at whatever it was.

“Roggenrola, the mantle Pokemon. These Pokemon have very sensitive hearing. Although their bodies are as tough as steel, and energy core resides within them.”

Edward checked the typing. Just rock type. Nuria looked hesitant as she held her Pokeball.

“It's just a rock type!” Edward called over. Nuria nodded and threw out her Pokemon. In a flash of white Ralts materialized. It looked at the rock pokemon, and instantly started quaking. Not missing a beat, Nuria ordered the first move.

“Double Team!” Nuria shouted. Instantly multiple copies appeared, each flashing faintly. The Roggenrola looked around, confused.

“Headbutt them all!” Rocky shouted. Instantly the Roggenrola started running into each one, making the images disappear as it did.

“Confusion!” Nuria responded. All of the remaining Ralts lifted their hands, and Roggenrola was thrown backward as though hit by an invisible force. It didn't stay down for long, though, and jumped up and continued Headbutting them all. With a scream the real Ralts was thrown back, skidding to a halt. The apparitions disappeared.

“Double Team again, then Confusion!” Nuria shouted. Once again the Ralts split into many more copies. Again the Roggenrola was thrown back.

“Rock Blast!” Rocky roared. The earth in front of the rock splintered, and four medium sized rocks, each about the size of Roggenrola's body, flew at various images of the Ralts. They all flew through, causing the images to faze out of existence.

“One more Confusion!” Nuria shouted. The Roggenrola flew back again, but this time, didn't get back up. Rocky recalled the Roggenrola in a flash of red. He threw out another ball, and this time a green/grey boulder with strong arms materialized. Its large eyes glared maliciously at Ralts.

“Rock Polish!” Rocky shouted. The rock Pokemon glowed silvery white, and then dimmed.

“Confusion again!” Nuria roared.

“Tackle!” Rocky shouted in return. Ralts raised its arms to summon psychic energy, but as it saw the Geodude advancing rapidly, far faster than it should have, it lost its focus, and turned to run away. It was struck in the back, and fell. It didn't get up. Nuria gritted her teeth, and recalled the Ralts. She took another ball from her pocket, and threw out Chikorita. The leaf Pokemon stood up straight, and glared at the Geodude.

“Please Razor Leaf!” Nuria commanded – no – asked. Chikorita flicked her leaf towards the Geodude. Tens of leaves flew towards the rock – it tried to dodge but was still too slow. It screamed as its rock body was lacerated, but it still hung on.

“Rock Throw!” Rocky roared. The Geodude, taking short, shallow breaths, darted over to the fissure the Roggenrola had made, picked up a rock and hurled it at the Chikorita. She screamed. Nuria stomped her foot.

“Razor Leaf again...Please,” she called. There was another flurry of leaves. The Geodude fell, and did not rise again. Gritting his teeth, Rocky withdrew Geodude, and threw his final Pokeball. In a flash of white a multicoloured bird materialized. It had a red, rocky beak with a small blue head. Its feathery red and yellow feathered body had two yellow and blue feathered wings. Two clawed red feet tapped the ground as it surveyed its enemy. Archen. Edward's eyes widened. He and Nuria had read books on fossil Pokemon. They knew that this was the resurrected ancestor of bird Pokemon. A rock and flying type. Not good for Chikorita.

“Synthesis! Quick!” Nuria shouted. Chikorita stood still, turning her head slightly to glare at Nuria. “Just do it!” Nuria cried.

“No,” Chikorita growled.

“Archen, Wing Attack.”

“Please, Chikorita, use PoisonPowder!” Nuria begged. Chikorita paused for a moment, and then released a cloud of purple. As the Archen advanced, wings glowing, it became enveloped in the gas and began to slow, breathing labouringly. It came to a complete stop, and crumpled onto the ground, choking. Edward looked around. Why wasn't anyone doing anything? Suddenly Edward caught a glance of a sudden movement, Rocky threw something onto the field. Edward looked at the Archen, now chewing something. As it chewed it began to get back up, breathing properly. Nuria glared at the Gym Leader.

“That's unfair!” She yelled. Rocky just snorted:

“Berried are allowed in competition. League rules.”

Nuria growled. The Archen on the other hand, turned its back on Chikorita, and looked up to its trainer.

“Thank you master,” it muttered, bowing. Nuria clenched her teeth.

“Chikorita, use-” but before Nuria could issue a command, Chikorita shot leaves at back of the defenceless Archen. And more leaves. And more. An unending surge of green shot from the leaf Pokemon toward the bird. In the maelstrom, the bird collapsed. But the leaves kept coming, relentless, brutal. Feathers were cut off. Flesh became torn.

“Stop Chikorita!” Nuria called. Chikorita ignored her, sending more serrated leaves towards the bird, slashing through feathers and skin.

“Hey! Stop that!” Rocky bellowed from the other end of the ring. He held up his Pokeball to reclaim the bird, but the leaves deflected the red plasma. The Archen had lost most of its feathers, revealing the pink, blood-stained naked body. Some of the spectators were panicking.

“Chikorita, for God's sake, stop now! I command you!” Nuria bellowed at the top of her voice. The leaves stopped. Chikorita turned her face back towards Nuria, anger and rage contorting its otherwise featureless face. She Growled at Nuria, then became enveloped in a brilliant white light. Its form began to change, becoming taller, and-

Suddenly it took on a red glow as the Pokemon was withdrawn; Chikorita's Pokeball in Nuria's hand. The silence in the clearing was deafening. Rocky threw something at Nuria's feet in silence. Shaking, she stooped and picked up the badge. She stood up, and walked away into the forest in silence, face white. Edward went to follow, but Nuria whirled and gave him such a murderous glare that he found himself rooted in place.

“Edward Lance?” Rocky bellowed, the list in his hand again. Edward turned and raised his hand. Rocky looked at the Nurse Joy, who was standing at the sidelines, miniature regeneration machine beside her, and asked her something in a voice too quiet for Edward to hear. He turned back to Edward and shrugged.

“Archen can't participate in this battle. How's two on two?” The Gym Leader asked.

“But I have three Pokemon,” Edward argued.

“Two on two it is then,” and without further ado the rock Gym Leader threw a Pokeball out. The Roggenrola appeared in a white glow. Edward grinned and threw out his Nincada.

“Dig, Nincada!” Edward shouted. Instantly the Nincada began to Dig, feelers a blur as it disappeared underground.

“Harden!” Rocky yelled. The Roggenrola took on a silver sheen as the Nincada erupted from underneath, sending the rock Pokemon flying. It landed awkwardly on its head, but managed to roll right-way-up.

“Dig again!” Edward yelled, triumphantly. He knew there was nothing the Roggenrola could do. The Nincada started to burrow again, and soon became lost underground. Rocky did nothing to counter this, he just waited for the ground under Roggenrola to crack and let the bug type smash into the rock. Rocky recalled his fainted Pokemon, and threw out his last ball. Geodude. Edward grinned.

“Dig!” Edward shouted. This time, though, the Gym Leader retaliated.

“Magnitude!” He shouted as Nincada disappeared below ground. Geodude pounded the floor with a fist. Edward saw the ground shake, but at the same time a screech from below ground. The Nincada dug out of the floor, but sluggish and weakly. Geodude punched the floor again, and the Nincada crumpled. Edward couldn't help but wonder how Nincada was so hurt from such mild shaking. Anyway, he withdrew the insect into his Pokeball.

Suddenly, he realised just how close he was. He was halfway there, and his next Pokemon was Mudkip. He grinned.

“Go, Mudkip!” He shouted. Rocky's shoulders appeared to droop slightly. “Water Gun!” Edward shouted.

“Rock Throw!” Rocky commanded, but it was too late. The high-pressure water blast hit the Geodude head on, sending it flying backwards. Rocky was about to reclaim it when he noticed it getting up. Obviously surprised, Rocky shouted another command for Rock Throw, at the same time Edward ordered another Water Gun. Geodude was quicker this time, and a small boulder connected with Mudkip's face. A second later a second blast of water hit the Geodude. It fell, and didn't get back up.

Edward felt electricity surging through him. His first Gym Battle – a complete success! Rocky must have seen him grinning, because he did too as he walked over to Edward. The man offered Edward his hand, revealing a small, golden/bronze badge, with the design of two arrows facing away from each other, connected by the outside of a rectangle.

“You did well, kid,” the Gym Leader begrudged. “Try and talk to your friend though. I think she seemed pretty unhappy. Tell her I forgive her.” And with a toothy grin he walked away, scrabbling in his pocket for the piece of paper.

Inside, Edward's euphoria melted away as he remembered Nuria. He turned, looking in the direction she had travelled in. He had to find; she'd probably distraught, he though. Then again, he remembered, that murderous glare...

Edward shook his head. He'd find and comfort his friend, like friends should. He set off to find her, just as the next name was announced for battle.




Next Chapter (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14283061&postcount=31)
***

Hey, this isn't related to the story. Well, it kind of is, actually. I was thinking of changing the viewpoint from third to first person, through Edward's eyes. The storyline wouldn't change, but from next chapter onwards the viewpoint would change. What do you all think?

overlordmewtwo
3rd March 2012, 2:01 PM
In answer to your question, do whatever you feel led to do. First person, third person, it doesn't matter to me.

I also noticed a spelling error in the paragraph with Kyogre and Rayquaza. "A feint glow of red." It's supposed to be spelled "A faint glow of red." Just thought I'd let you know.

Scaldaver
3rd March 2012, 6:11 PM
In answer to your question, do whatever you feel led to do. First person, third person, it doesn't matter to me.

I also noticed a spelling error in the paragraph with Kyogre and Rayquaza. "A feint glow of red." It's supposed to be spelled "A faint glow of red." Just thought I'd let you know.

I put faint, then thought 'isn't that what happens to you when you get dizzy' and thought it was feint. Thanks for the corrections.

I like how you assume it is Rayquaza...

And next time, please tell me what you think of the chapter as a story when you post. It'll help me make the future chapters better.

Dragonfree
6th March 2012, 2:34 PM
Hey. Sorry I never beta'd chapter five; I've had a lot of stuff on my hands.

I don't have time to comb through for all the grammar errors, but generally it's just a lot of the same as before (in particular, you still use way too many unusual speech verbs), though you definitely are improving in many respects there. The "Ninjask" turning out to be a Zubat was nice, although slightly less so when you went on to point out that Zubat is also an extremely convenient Pokémon for Edward to have. The reasoning behind Zubat's speech gimmick seems pretty nonsensical to me, however; it's not speaking human at all, so why would not communicating with humans lead to its speech becoming dated? If it's just been speaking to other Pokémon, and all Pokémon speak the same language with different basic sounds (as implied by the fact Edward understands Pokémon speech in general rather than just the speech of some Pokémon), that should mean its language would evolve in sync with theirs. I mean, it is reasonably entertaining and all, but it just doesn't really make sense.

Also, although yes, you're not aiming for it to be perfectly correct, it did kind of grate on me that you used "mine" and "thine" wrong. "My" and "mine" and "thy" and "thine" in old-school English work exactly analogously to "a" and "an": if the next word starts with a consonant, you go with "my/thy", whereas if the next word starts with a vowel, you use "mine/thine". For similar reasons, the old informal second-person reflexive pronoun is "thyself", not "thineself". And yes, "thou" is an informal pronoun - you'd use "thou" for a peer and "you" for a stranger or superior (think of using "thou" as kind of like being on a first-name basis with someone), so I'd kind of expect Zubat to start off using "you" as he's praising Edward's greatness.

I'm also afraid I didn't feel the gym battles in the latest chapter were very exciting. The Pokémon all go down in just a couple of hits, and they're largely just using the same, usually damaging moves over and over - they're too short and it doesn't feel like there's much strategy going on, except somewhat with Nuria. Chikorita's sudden savagery against the Archen did stir things up a bit in her battle (and that will be interesting to see more of), but Edward's battle is really just completely uninteresting - the fact he has a Mudkip and a Nincada against just two of the gym leader's Rock Pokémon means he's at a very blatant advantage, so it just feels like a foregone conclusion that he's going to win, and at no point in the battle does that seem in the slightest bit of doubt. That kind of battle can be saved by having emotional or plotty stuff going on in it, but battles aren't inherently thrilling; you have to work to get real tension and excitement going on in them.

As for switching to first person, I really don't think it's a good idea to change the narrative POV in the middle of a story, generally, but if first person really flows smoother for you, I suppose you shouldn't be bound to what you started in anyway. Do you actually think first person is more appropriate and that you could write it better than third, though? There are some writers to whom first person comes naturally, but others couldn't write it to save their lives, and there are some stories that call for it, but that's generally when they're heavy on introspection and stream-of-consciousness. If this is just a random whim and not that you think the story would actually be better in first person, I'd have to recommend against it.

Scaldaver
7th March 2012, 7:26 PM
Thanks for the low-down, Dragonfree. I've added an explanation to Pokemon speech at the end of chapter 5. And yeah, I did mean to make the old english sound incorrect, and I'm happy people noticed. I made the gym battles boring, as at this stage in an adventure/game, there would be very few techniques available, and as Edward has a Mudkip with Water-Gun, obviously he is better off spamming it. Don't worry, the later Gym battles will be more entertaining.

Oh, and by the way Dragonfree, the main character is Edward. Not Ethan.

Dragonfree
7th March 2012, 8:36 PM
Oh, wtf self. I don't usually get the names of fictional characters confused.

If you encounter a problem like gym battles being boring because of how few moves the Pokémon know, though, you should generally try to figure out a way to make them interesting despite this, not just keep them boring and think "Oh, well, later battles will be more interesting." What if Rocky had, say, a Water/Rock Pokémon, making it not weak to Water and have a type advantage against the Ground-type Nincada? What if a Rock Throw injured one of Nincada's legs so it couldn't dig anymore? Just because the Pokémon are low-leveled and don't have a lot of moves doesn't mean the battles have to be monotonous and strategy-less. And in particular, gym leaders are supposed to be masters of their type - Rocky at least should have interesting strategies and methods of dealing with Water-types rather than just spamming Rock Throw.

Donphan Dude
10th March 2012, 4:39 PM
Thank you Scaldaver for these last two chapters. They are very well written (no story is prfect on grammar and spelling) and are entertaining to read. As Dragonfree said, the gym battle that Edward was in was boring and Nuria's was only interesting because of the evil Chikorita. Catching a Zubat instead of a Ninjask was a nice twist but why would a Nincada want to travel with a trainer willingly? For me that didn't make much sense.

Scaldaver
10th March 2012, 10:51 PM
Hey, I'd like to point out a mistake of my own. I mistakenly wrote Ralts as a boy in chapter 6, but it is in fact a girl. It probably won't impact on anyone in anyway, most of you probably didn't notice or care, but in my mind she is a girl. I think I've made the appropriate changes, but point any more out if you see them. TTFN!

Scaldaver
11th March 2012, 12:07 PM
Ok, so this one's a G, one of the friendlier chapters.

Chapter 7

The Serpent of the Sea


The creature reached its destination; the large, dark chamber filled with stalagmites and stalactites. It saw the glowing pattern, similar to Groudon's, though luminescent red instead of blue. Yellow ovals glared piercingly at the creature from the inky darkness.

“You dare enter my domain?” a deep voice asked. The anger in its voice couldn't have been cut with the sharpest knife. The intruder didn't respond.

“You killed Groudon,” the rumbling voice stated. “After all these years of neutrality, why throw the first stone?”

The intruder remained silent.

“You shall not dispose of me so easily,” the voice continued, rising to a roar. The intruder showed no signs of being phased. It observed the darkness with its wide eyes. “You shall not dispose of us so easily.”

Suddenly the intruder sensed another presence, incredibly powerful, approaching faster than sound through the chasm. It darted past the intruder, right over to the voice's owner. The newcomer left a yellow after-mirage in its wake, enough to illuminate the ancient voice's owner; a large, egg shaped body; two large side fins, resembling large flat hands with four square claws, and behind it trailed four ribbon-like appendages. This creature's own light illuminated the newcomer in red. A long, serpentine creature, with two thin arms nearer its head, and three sets of four fins along its body. Its large, reptilian head had four long, rectangular spike-like appendages shooting out at all the horizontals. Its mouth was open, revealing the razor sharp gums.

“Alone,” the newcomer hissed, “we would be no match. But together,” the snake growled a soft chuckle, “we will avenge our comrade. Prepare to die!”

***

Edward heard the cussing before he saw her. He searched for where he heard the profanities, and saw Nuria, kicking at a tree. Cautiously, he approached. As he did so, Nuria turned and flinched at the sight of him, then her gaze turned hostile.

“Get lost,” she grumbled, and turned her back on him. Edward, used to this sort of behaviour, carried on walking towards her.

“I won, by the way,” Edward said, strolling casually to her side. Nuria nodded, and bit her lip.

“How did you beat the Archen?” Nuria asked, her voice now more robotic.

“Er,” Edward silently cursed himself for bringing up this discussion, “well, Archen was, um, too damaged to battle.” Nuria was silent for several seconds.

“It wasn't my fault,” Nuria said. “It was the stupid Chikorita.” Edward knew better than to argue. “Why the hell's it so messed up?” Nuria demanded. Edward couldn't respond. “Why couldn't I have got a normal, mentally sound starter? Why do I get the worst one?”

“Don't talk like that,” Edward said firmly, eyes narrow. “You've just got to work at it.”

“Work at what, Eddy? It wants to kill me. What can I possibly do?”

“You could apologise,” Edward said. He noticed how angry he was getting, how his voice had become more of a shout than it should have. He wa aware what weak an argument this was, but couldn't she see that a false apology could smooth everything over? Nuria glared at him with murderer's eyes.

“Apologise?” she demanded. “Apologise for what? 'Sorry you're so messed up'? 'Sorry you almost killed an Archen'? 'Sorry you want to kill me'? I have nothing to apologise for. Here,” she brought a Pokeball from one of her pockets and forced it into his chest, “take it, if you care so much for it. I'll replace it with another.” And before Edward could reply, she stormed off into the forest.

Edward stood for a minute, eyes on the ball. Could he really keep it? No, it was Nuria's. Then what would he do?

Edward threw the Pokeball high into the air, and the Chikorita returned, still glowing white from earlier. In front of him the Chikorita grew in size, up to Edward's shoulders, turning from light green to beige. The seeds on her neck also started to germinate, growing tubular with rounded edges. The leaf on her head grew longer, becoming sharper, and developed a circular hole at the edge. The white glow expelled, and the Bayleef opened her red eyes for the first time. The glare turned to wide-eyed in shock as she saw it was Edward, not Nuria, who addressed it.

“Where is she?” Bayleef spat. Edward couldn't help but notice how the voice had become stronger, more feminine, but cutting edge too.

“We need to talk,” Edward said in a level voice. The Bayleef shook her head.

“Tell me, boy, where is she? She deserves punishment for-”

“For what?” Edward interrupted. “Trainers tell Pokemon what to do. How to fight. In exchange, you get stronger. What's wrong with that?”

“Everything!” Bayleef roared. “Why is it fair that we lose our lives to satisfy the wants of children? Pokemon should be free, live equally with humans. Why does she order me around? Why can't I order her around? I am superior,” and to demonstrate her point, she whipped her head towards a small tree, and a large leaf shot from her head, cutting the tree in half. It rumbled as it fell towards the ground, and something inhuman shrieked as it collided. Edward to too awed to reply straight away.

“Maybe you two could work things out,” he proposed, knowing it was a doomed idea. Bayleef shook her head, and Edward worried for a moment that a leaf would destroy more of the scenery.

“If she apologises, we can work out a deal. Until then, I shall not battle until I see fit.”

***

Edward couldn't get the conversation out of his head for the remainder of the day. He didn't have it in him to train his Pokemon, and besides, it was getting dark. Stew was cooking on an open fire in the middle of the clearing, the fire being the best source of light, causing dark shadows to dance hypnotically around the foliage. Edward was about to get ready for bed when he saw Nuria emerging from the foliage. He hadn't seen her for hours, not since the argument, but the killer glare was still there.

“Well?” she demanded.

“Well what?” Edward asked.

“Chikorita. Will it come back to me?”

“I thought you didn't want her back,” Edward said. Nuria sighed in frustration.

“Of course I want it ba-”

“Her,” Edward said. “Her, not it.” Nuria gritted her teeth.

“Okay, so maybe I lost my temper. But maybe I spent the last three hours regretting my decision.” Edward noticed for the first time that her eyes were slightly red and puffy. Instantly, he felt bad.

“She says she won't battle until she gets an apology.”

Nuria looked up into the canopy, judging the time from the light available. “Tomorrow,” she promised. “I'm too tired now.” Edward suspected there was another reason, but let the matter rest.

After having some stew, which was served in small plastic bowls by the nurse, Edward and Nuria tried to both squeeze into the tent. It didn't work.

“Our bags are in the way,” Nuria cursed. “We'll have to leave them outside.”

“But someone could steal them,” Edward argued.

“Well then, Chikorita can put her butt to good use and keep watch for them,” Nuria muttered.

“How about we let them all out?” Edward proposed, not feeling it was a good idea to let Bayleef out just by herself. “Then they can all get to know each other.” Nuria sighed, but agreed. One by one all their Pokemon were released, Bayleef last. Mudkip tensed automatically.

“Wanna battle?” he asked, bouncing up and down slightly. Above him, Bayleed rolled her eyes. Suddenly Edward noticed Nuria glaring at him again.

“She evolved,” she growled in an undertone, “and you just forgot to mention that?” Edward's face coloured slightly.

" But you saw her start to evolve!" he protested.

"That was Synthesis!" she growled. Suddenly her features smoothed. "Oh... so that was her-"

“What do you want us for, girl?” Bayleef interrupted. Nuria held up her hands.

“We just thought,” she began, choosing her words carefully, “that you could all sleep out here for the night, if you want, and make sure our bags don't get stolen.”

“Magnificent idea, mistress!” Zubat called from his perch in the tree. “Obviously, you knew of the nocturnal capabilities of my noble species, and took it upon thyself to appoint me as guardian. I am so honoured, my lady,” and he bowed slightly. Now Nuria's face turned slightly red.

“Well, whatever,” she turned to address the rest of the group, “ is this okay with anyone else?” Nincada (who Edward had discovered to be a boy) nodded once; Mudkip jumped up and down, nodding enthusiastically; Ralts said “Okay,” whilst quaking slightly, and Bayleef just rolled her eyes again.

“I'll stay out here, but don't expect me to help if your bags get taken,” and she sat down on her stomach, closing her eyes.

“Well,” said Edward, breaking the awkward atmosphere, “we're going to sleep now, so, um, have fun, okay?” The Pokemon nodded, some more enthusiastically than others, and Edward and Nuria disappeared into the tent.

The space was so cramped that the two couldn't even get inside their sleeping bags, so they resignedly slept under them, head to toe. Unfortunately for Edward, Nuria was a fidget. Barely a moment passed when she didn't shift her position, keeping Edward wide-eyed in the orangey glow of the tent. At one point, Edward noticed something kicked over from Nuria's feet, a little purple waist bag Edward hadn't ever noticed before. Nuria kicked it again in her sleep, and the contents spilled out. Edward's face turned white, then, with shaking fingers, gently, cautiously, picked up the offending item.

“Nuria,” he half whispered, half choked, “what the hell is this?” Nuria rolled over, eyes half closed, and caught sight of what he was holding. Her eyes didn't even widen.

“Defence. What do you think?” She rolled over again.

Edward, arms shaking, opened the waist bag, tentatively placed the gun in, and pushed it as far away from him as possible.

***

“Who wansta battle?” Mudkip asked for the seventh time that night. Ralts and Nincada groaned, Bayleef didn't reply (again) and Zubat was still perched atop its lookout in the tree, just visible in the fire light. Everybody was asleep now, the humans, anyway, but Zubat was still resolute in keeping watch.

“I commend thy spirit,” Zubat noted, “but why all this eagerness to fight? We are all friends here.”

“I wanna evolve!” Mudkip barked. “Duh!”

“We all want to evolve,” Zubat said, “but surely it can wait until our solemn duty has been completed?” Mudkip yawned.

“You're boring,” Mudkip whined. He turned to Bayleef. “What's it like to evolve, Bayleef?” Bayleef's right eye half opened, and turned her head away.

“It's amazing,” Bayleef said simply. “You feel older... more mature...more powerful.”

“Cooool,” Mudkip sighed. He lay down on his back, and looked up into the canopy. “I can't wait to evolve. Anyone else? Ralts? Nincada?” Ralts, who was sitting, staring vacantly at the flames of the fire, nodded once.

“Anything for Nuria,” Ralts whispered in a soft feminine voice. Bayleef's head snapped toward the feeling Pokemon.

“What did you say?” she demanded, slight anger in her voice.

“I love her,” Ralts whispered, still facing the fire. “She is my trainer. I will evolve if she wants me to. And she does want me to. I would do anything for her. I would die for her.”

Bayleef started to shake in rage.

“She made you fight, made you get pummelled by wild Wurmple, and you - you can love her? You shake whenever you see her. But you still love her? How is that possible?” She sounded incredulous, shocked. Ralts' head turned slowly to face Bayleef.

“She has my best interests at heart. She loves me too. I just feel... horrible that I cannot fight well for her,” she shook her head, “ I always think that she will release me. But at least I beat Roggenrola. I will never let her down again.” She turned her head back toward the flames. Bayleef shook her head in disgust.

“You think she loves you? She has your best interests at heart? You're deluded. She only uses you. All trainers do.”

“Stop right there!” Zubat intervened. “My master is a noble, worthy-”

“Not you too,” Bayleef slumped her head. “You are all fools. We are the slaves here! We can't even run out of one-hundred metres or touch our Pokeballs without feeling pain. You know why? Just because, a while ago, some Pokemon had the sense to run, to flee or destroy their Pokeballs to escape slavery. So they made us more powerful prisons. They feel no love for us. You will see one day that I am right.” She rested her head on the floor, and closed her eyes. The other Pokemon remained silent, taking in her words.

A few seconds later, Mudkip broke the tension.

“And you, Nincada? Do you want to evolve?” he asked. Nincada didn't reply straight away.

“I live to become stronger. Why else would I want join a trainer? But to evolve, to become somethings else; I don't know,” Nincada muttered.

“How can you not know?” Mudkip asked, shocked. “You get stronger, more powerful. How cool is that?”

“Hmm,” was all Nincada's reply. Mudkip sighed, resigned, and rolled onto his side. Soon, he fell asleep.

***

Edward awoke after broken night's sleep of nightmares and tossing and turning. The worst nightmare was one where Nuria had chased him with a gun in the shape of a Bayleef. There were also voices, but he forgot them as soon as he awoke.

“Nuria?” he asked, but got no reply. He looked over, and saw Nuria was gone. After wriggling outside, Edward saw Nuria, sitting by the ashes of the previous night's fire, eating a bowl of cereal. How was it she always woke up first, and where did she get all the cereal? Edward's mind wondered. He noticed that all the Pokemon were awake, except Bayleef, and all laying around idly. Ralts was sitting very close to Nuria, appearing to bask in her trainer's presence. Zubat suddenly appeared in the air next to him.

“T'was a successful mission, master,” Zubat said. “You shall be happy to know I was diligent in my mission, and I did not sleep at all.”

“Well, thanks,” Edward mumbled, still tired, “but you really didn't have to stay up all-”

“No, master, you commandeth me, and I shall go to the ends of the earth to-”

“Shuuut uuup,” Mudkip moaned from afar, “don't start with all the old speak again!” Zubat shot an eyeless, distasteful glare at the mud fish. Before arguments could escalate, Edward brought out his Pokeballs from his pocket and recaptured his Pokemon.

“Where are we going to to today?” he called over to the campfire. Nuria and Ralts both looked up to him at the same time. Creepy.

“I thought we'd go to Dewford today, like all the other trainers, if the boat is usable in the rain,” and as though to prove her point, lighting, the first in ages, boomed in the sky, far louder than anything previous. It seemed the entire world flashed and rumbled for just a second, then-

“A psychic connection,” Ralts commented, speaking slowly, staring at Edward from under her helmet. “You have a-”

“Okay, Ralts,” Nuria reached into her pocket and took out a Pokeball, “you're obviously too tired. How about some rest?” And before she could retaliate, Ralts was enveloped in red and absorbed.

“What was all that about?” Edward asked. Nuria shrugged.

“So, uh, Nuria, about that item I found...” Edward asked cautiously.

“What about it? It's just a bit of protection from freaks,” and she stood, marching over to the tent. Edward knew when Nuria didn't want to talk, it was easier to get blood from a stone.

Soon they had packed all of their belongings, recaptured their Pokemon, said goodbye to the nurse, and made their way through the forest.

“So, where's the boat anyway?” Edward asked. Nuria smirked.

“In the water.”

“Oh, ha ha,” Edward grinned too, “but where's the place we go to get on the boat, Nuria?”

“Just out of the forest,” Nuria explained. “Didn't you see it when we teleported to the forest entrance?”

“No,” Edward muttered, feeling like an idiot. All he had had to do was look behind him when he had arrived.

“Anyway, look, we're nearly-” she stopped, face paling. “Oh...” Edward's eyes widened at the completely shocked way in which she spoke. They approached the forest boundary, and Edward saw it too. His heart skipped a beat, he felt himself getting colder. They stopped at the boundary. He realised how strange it was, how he'd been so stupid. Why hadn't he heard it earlier; the shift in sound, the disappearance of the constant pitter-patter that had grown into background noise in the day he had spent in the forest.

But now, complete silence...

***

Time blurred for Edward as they continued to the boat. Nuria's head seemed clear. Did she understand the ramifications? Or did she just not care?

Edward barely noticed as the ground became sandy, and as they boarded the overcrowded boat. Nuria would say something every now and then, but he'd just mumble nothingness in reply.

Edward's mind focused, and he looked out at the sea, leaning on the rail. He flinched when he saw the shore a hundred metres away, but he still felt numb. He noticed the grey shade of the sky; no rain, no sunlight. He saw how the shoreline was completely still, no waves lapping over the sand. He then noticed Nuria approaching, hands in pockets.

“You okay, drama queen?” she asked. She came to a stop and leant on the rail next to him. “I thought you'd faint. I was shocked, heck, everybody was, but maybe it's just coincidence. After all, when Groudon was around, was it sunny all the time. Maybe it works the other way too. Maybe it'll pick up again later.” She bit her lip, and Edward instantly knew she didn't believe it herself.

Edward noticed the boat they were on was more of a small sail-boat, rather than the huge steam boat he had been expecting, the deck only about five metres from the ocean top. Children younger than him stood everywhere, all talking excitedly. On a raised deck stood a sourly old man at the wheel, muttering inaudibly to himself. Edward also noticed a speck in the horizon.

“That's Dewford?” asked Edward to Nuria. She shrugged.

“What the...” muttered someone behind Nuria, staring intently up into the sky. Edward whipped his head around and up to see. All he saw was a clear blue circle, surrounded by clouds. There was no sun in the gap of the clouds, but it seemed eerie. The clouds seemed to move around the gap, as though a force field was preventing clouds from rolling over that one area. A few of the other trainers noticed too, and the gibber-gabber quieted down. Unnatural silence...

"Hey," Nuria's voice rose above the silence, "what's the big-"

The water started to boil, just under the spot, hundreds of metres away, maybe a kilometre away. The water tossed and turned, first gently but then more violently, when suddenly the ocean exploded. A massive green serpent shot out, and disappeared, spiralling high into the sky, through the hole in the clouds. As the tip of its tail disappeared, the clouds closed up, no evidence of the serpent remaining.

Edward expected to hear as much panic as he was feeling. Because if that was... If it was really...

Suddenly Edward noticed himself weakening, his consciousness seeping away. His vision wasn't blurring, his mind wasn't sluggish, but everything seemed to move further away, as though his mind was being drained. He tried to fight to feeling, but he felt his legs buckling, his body lurching forward. He flipped over the rail, and fell. He never felt the impact. By then, he was too far gone.




Next (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14358810&postcount=45)

overlordmewtwo
11th March 2012, 3:58 PM
Rayquaza appeared from the water. Why did he faint? Panic, I guess? It doesn't make sense!

So obviously the killer is not Rayquaza (especially because he came to Kyogre's aid), but I still have yet to figure out who the killer is. Maybe I'll find out before it's told officially...

Keep up the good work!

Donphan Dude
12th March 2012, 9:01 AM
I'm still pretty sure that Rayquaza is the killer. I got the impression that either a Jellicent or a Frillish was helping Kyogre as they both have ribbons coming out of them!

A few spelling/ grammar errors:

Near the end of the chapter you said "lighting", when it should have been lightNing
You also said, "where are we going to to today?" There only needs to be one to.

Mistakes aside, it was entertaining read!

Scaldaver
12th March 2012, 11:28 AM
I'm still pretty sure that Rayquaza is the killer. I got the impression that either a Jellicent or a Frillish was helping Kyogre as they both have ribbons coming out of them!

If you look at a pic of Kyogre, it has ribbons on its tail, so the newcomer is Rayquaza, Kyogre the original voice, and the murderer/ intruder.

Anyone else don't understand?

Thanks for the corrections, I'll get onto them later.

Sidewinder
12th March 2012, 4:18 PM
Quite an engaging read. Most of the points I would draw attention to have already been mentioned, but I found one or two that were not. I'll try and touch on those a bit.


Its mouth was open, revealing the razor sharp gums.

Did you mean teeth? I was following that paragraph quickly and with alot of excitement, but that last bit threw me off and made me stumble a bit.

Besides that one bit, I've noticed that with each chapter your grammar gets a bit better, along with cleaning up some of the spelling mistakes. Spelling mishaps are one thing that really break my rhythm with my reading. Not that you have that many, but when they did pop up it broke my concentration. I've noticed with each chapter they are becoming less and less frequent. Good job on that, it goes a long way with providing a fun read.

I also noticed a couple misplaced comma's. Though you corrected them after other people mentioned them. That's another thing that causes readers to sometime lose their place and get drawn away from the story. You've been getting progressively better with that, so great job!

I feel like a broken record mentioning the same things that others did, but Dragonfree had a great point with Edward's gym battle. It felt a tad bit rushed, and it did seem that the Gym Leader had a noticeable lack of strategy. They usually only earn their position by being the best, and I didn't really feel that. The battles however, were nicely described. Not just the gym battles, but all the battles that I've seen take place. I feel like I can see them quite clearly, which is a great achievement.

Edward and Nuria are quite appealing. I feel like I'm able to connect with Nuria more than Edward for some reason. She seems more formed, more defined, if that makes sense. I'm really excited to see more character development from them, and where their journey is going to take them. I've skimmed some other fic's and have been really horrified at some of the one dimensional and common characters. Edward and Nuria are a welcome exception, just make sure you keep expanding on their thoughts and ideas. I know for a fact that its easy to make mistakes with a character's development when you have to focus on so many other parts of the story. If the characters are lacking, your story will suffer. Nice work, keep it up!

Legendary's getting killed was a great addition. You make no attempt to hide the reality of the fact that bad things actually happen. Groudon's death was nicely portrayed. And though it might sound somewhat morbid, I look forward to seeing if any other staples of power like them get torn down.

All in all, I'm really excited for the next chapter and very glad I started your fic. I'll be sure to reccomend it to anyone on the site who's looking for a good read. Keep up the good work!

Scaldaver
12th March 2012, 10:12 PM
Quite an engaging read. Most of the points I would draw attention to have already been mentioned, but I found one or two that were not. I'll try and touch on those a bit.


Its mouth was open, revealing the razor sharp gums.

Did you mean teeth? I was following that paragraph quickly and with alot of excitement, but that last bit threw me off and made me stumble a bit.


Rayquaza doesn't actually appear to have teeth, just sharp, red gums. Check out a picture if you're not sure.


I also noticed a couple misplaced comma's. Though you corrected them after other people mentioned them. That's another thing that causes readers to sometime lose their place and get drawn away from the story. You've been getting progressively better with that, so great job!


Yeah, I'm horrible at commas. If anyone can point them out, I'll be thrilled.



I feel like a broken record mentioning the same things that others did, but Dragonfree had a great point with Edward's gym battle. It felt a tad bit rushed, and it did seem that the Gym Leader had a noticeable lack of strategy. They usually only earn their position by being the best, and I didn't really feel that. The battles however, were nicely described. Not just the gym battles, but all the battles that I've seen take place. I feel like I can see them quite clearly, which is a great achievement.


My aim of the whole easy gym thing was to demonstrate the ineptitude of the trainers and Pokemon with low levels (as I mentioned with Dragonfree). In a game, what tactics would you have, especially with two advantageous pokemon? More importantly, they'll be a nice comparison for me to write about later on... Don't worry though, everyone, they'll get MUCH harder from here on in...

Thanks for all the great comments, they're the reason I keep on writing!

Sidewinder
12th March 2012, 10:43 PM
Ah, well that does make more sense, I should have read your convo with Dragonfree closer

And yes, Rayquaza's picture paints a much different picture. Thankyou for correcting me lol. I just feel like it should have teeth haha

Scaldaver
13th March 2012, 8:54 AM
Yeah, me too lol. I try to keep the Pokemon exactly to their pictures

Dragonfree
14th March 2012, 6:33 AM
Again, I don't really have time for full grammar-nitpicky-mode, but I'm chiming in with Sidewinder; you've improved considerably in that regard, though there are still issues. (All I'm going to point out is that in the opening scene, incidentally, you use "phased" where you mean "fazed", as in "unfazed" - although I'm not sure I've ever heard that used as "showing no signs of being fazed".)


I entirely understand the people who got confused over the legendary-scene this time around; I found it puzzling even after reading your explanation of what was going on. It's a matter of the difficulty of figuring out which of all your ways of referring to or describing the legendaries are referring to the same one. To see what I mean, let's bold all those references to the legendaries in the last two paragraphs:


Suddenly the intruder sensed another presence, incredibly powerful, approaching faster than sound through the chasm. It darted past the intruder, right over to the other presence in the room. This one left a yellow after-mirage in its wake,enough to illuminate the ancient voice's owner. A large, egg shaped body. Two large side fins, resembling large flat hands with four square claws. Behind it trailed four ribbon-like appendages. This creature's own light illuminated the newcomer in red. A long, serpentine creature, with two thin arms nearer its head, and three sets of four fins along its body. Its large, reptilian head had four long, rectangular spike-like appendages shooting out at all the horizontals. Its mouth was open, revealing the razor sharp gums.

“Alone,” the newcomer hissed, “we would be no match. But together,” the snake growled a soft chuckle, “we will avenge our comrade. Prepare to die!”
There are so many back-references ("this one", "this creature") and confusing references to different individuals as "creatures" or "presences", not to mention the fact the descriptions are disconnected from their subject so it isn't at all obvious, that parsing all this information correctly requires a whole lot of squinting and guesswork and backtracking.

What I'd recommend for situations like this, where multiple individuals whose actual names can't be given are involved, is to use consistent epithets for them. You do this in part, with "the intruder" and "the newcomer" - however, you also try to vary the way you refer to them, which just makes things confusing quickly in a situation like this, and you have no consistent epithet for Kyogre. Also, connect the descriptions to those consistent epithets in an obvious way, so it's clear which creature you're describing in each case.


So, I thought the aftermath of the Chikorita part was kind of weird.

First of all, you have Edward angrily suggesting Nuria should apologize to Chikorita - but for what? The current issue at hand is Chikorita beating up an innocent Archen for liking its trainer and Nuria recalling her when she refused to stop; why does he think Nuria is at fault here? Even if we assume Chikorita's general resentment towards her is entirely justified, Chikorita is still plainly in the wrong in this case for taking it out on another Pokémon who had nothing to do with it. The fact Edward acts like Nuria was doing something terribly wrong is pretty bizarre here. (What's more is that when Edward is actually talking to Bayleef, he seems to agree that Nuria has nothing to be sorry about, making this even more puzzling.)

Meanwhile, the way both Edward and Nuria are only concerned with Bayleef's 'ownership' rather than with the fact she was psychotically, out-of-control violent last time she was in a battle feels grievously irresponsible. Aren't they the slightest bit worried that this will happen again? Why is their continued longing to own her not even in question at any point? Has Nuria not started to think maybe she should just release this Pokémon that hates her, is a dangerous wildcard in battle and has only been making her feel bad on their journey thus far?

Which brings us to the weird general lack of anyone bringing up the possibility of release. Bayleef has stated explicitly that she hates the idea of battling for a trainer, and yet it seems to occur to nobody, not even Bayleef herself, that maybe this means she shouldn't have a trainer. Edward's response to her objections to training in general is a "Maybe you and Nuria can work this out", with no recognition of the fact that if Bayleef doesn't want to be trained she obviously should be allowed to go free regardless of what Nuria might think on the matter - it's pretty alienating when Edward has generally been presented as being pretty sympathetic towards Pokémon. And yet Bayleef never asks to be released - despite that she hates trainers and wants nothing to do with them, and that she especially despises Nuria in particular, she doesn't simply ask to not be Nuria's Pokémon, instead insisting Nuria just apologize to her. I would think you're trying to convey that Bayleef has issues and is actually seeking validation, but even in that case I'd expect her to demand to be released, if only because it's a far more effective way of making Nuria want to keep her than viciously antagonizing trainers the way she's doing. And Edward still has no excuse.


“She evolved,” she growled in an undertone, “and you just forgot to mention that?” Edward's face coloured slightly, then Bayleef shook her head.
Also, this is pretty weird; Nuria must have seen that Chikorita was starting to evolve when she recalled her, and logically she'd continue evolving as soon as she was sent out. (And Nuria knows Edward talked to her, so she knows she must have been sent out.)


We can't even run out of one-hundred metres or touch our Pokeballs without feeling pain. You know why? Just because, a while ago, some Pokemon had the sense to run, to flee or destroy their Pokeballs to escape slavery. So they made us more powerful prisons.
If this is true and not just something Bayleef made up wholesale (as in the thing about Pokémon feeling pain if they run too far away from a Pokéball or touch it), then that seriously needs some addressing because it makes catching Pokémon way ethically dubious. (Accordingly, I'd have expected the other Pokémon to respond to this in some manner instead of just ignoring it. Actually, I'd also have expected that if Bayleef did make it up wholesale.)


I liked the bit about the gun. It kind of stretches suspension of disbelief that she'd have a gun, but knowing that apparently she left without her parents' permission, I'm assuming she stole it from them. Edward's general freaked-out what-the-hell reaction was well done, and Nuria's casualness about it, treating it as if having a gun for self-defense is the most natural thing in the world for a trainer, is suitably unnerving but fitting with her character as we know it.


“I live to become stronger. Why else would I want join a trainer? But to evolve, to become somethings else; I don't know,” Nincada muttered.
Ha. It's a pretty nice twist if Nincada doesn't want to evolve - shattering Edward's dreams of a Ninjask and leaving him stuck with an unevolved bug with an unusual typing. (Also, I don't know if the "somethings else" was a typo or a reference to the fact Nincada evolves into two Pokémon simultaneously and might think of evolution in those terms, but if it was the latter that's a pretty neat thing to do.)


“Shuuut uuup,” Mudkip moaned from afar, “don't start with all the knight speak again!”
While your explanation of Zubat's dated, not-entirely-correct speech made sense, another Pokémon referring to it as "knight speak" really doesn't - Pokémon don't actually have a time of knights that they'd associate such dated speech with.


Nuria and Ralts both looked up to him at the same time. Creepy.
I enjoyed this touch.


It seemed the entire world flashed and rumbled for just a second, then-

“A psychic connection,” Ralts commented, speaking slowly, staring from under her helmet. “You have a-”

“Okay, Ralts,” Nuria reached into her pocket and took out a Pokeball, “you're obviously too tired. How about some rest?” And before she could retaliate, Ralts was enveloped in red and absorbed.

“What was all that about?” Edward asked. Nuria shrugged.
Huh. Nuria's psychic? At this point that seems really random, but hopefully this will all turn out to make sense.

I also wonder why Edward fainted. It seems like rather an overreaction if it's just in response to seeing Rayquaza there while suspecting Kyogre is dead, but it's so sudden I'm guessing there has to be something else behind it. As always, it's nice to see stuff happening rather than just run-of-the-mill trainery stuff.

Scaldaver
14th March 2012, 5:27 PM
Hey, thanks for all the reviewing, Dragonfree. I've already altered the chapter to explain some more, and I will address the other points in other chapters. I also corrected the 'Knight speech' thing (I forgot that that Mudkip was a Pokemon momentarily. Oops...).

What Bayleef says about the Pokeballs is in fact true, but I will mention it in a later chapter...

(And yes, I did include the 'somethings'. I thought it would be a nice touch.)

legoslayer10
18th March 2012, 3:34 AM
This is astounding, the plot all comes together, with no backdraft of pointless flashbacks or any meaningless swap of words in any point. A fantastic story in every view!

Scaldaver
18th March 2012, 9:57 PM
This is astounding, the plot all comes together, with no backdraft of pointless flashbacks or any meaningless swap of words in any point. A fantastic story in every view!

So... you wanna be on the PM list?

Thanks for the shining comments, they're what I write for!

The Great Butler
22nd March 2012, 12:47 AM
I just read the entire story thus far from beginning to end, and I must say, I am pretty impressed.

While the beginning was a bit weak, relying on some typical trainer fic clichés while it was still unclear what the meaning of the Groudon portion was, you rapidly developed the story into something much more engaging than that. You've done well in later chapters at setting this apart from typical trainer fic fare, in fact, I daresay I've learned a couple of things myself.

On another note, I actually understood and liked what you did with the Rocky Gym battle - it was kind of a clever nod to how typically dull the first Gym in any of the games is. It raised some questions in my head, too - is it right to assume Rocky os from Unova, because he has Archen and Roggenrola? And what of Roxanne, where has she gone?

It's pretty clear you're planning out your narrative, because it's a considerable strength. I am very interested in the developing fight to stop Groudon's enigmatic assassin, and this "Shift" you've alluded to, which appears to be some kind of massive (un?)natural event that caused mass migrations, is also extremely intriguing.

You have had some struggles with spelling and grammar, but other reviewers have already thoroughly covered that, and you can further refer to the PM I'm going to send you.

Scaldaver
30th March 2012, 6:02 PM
Thanks for the proofreading of Dragonfree and The Great Butler, who between the two of them probably cover every mistake I make (of which there are many). So, anyway, enjoy!



Chapter Eight

Lost memories, Part 1

The battle was over. The lord of the seas was dead and the emperor of the sky was fleeing. The intruder cast an eye over to the mutilated corpse of what was once a worshipped god. After a lasting look of pity, it flew in pursuit of the dragon.

Slowly but steadily the corpse rose, belly-up, and gracefully floated up the chasm.

***

Edward's eyes suddenly flew open and he found himself staring wide-eyed at the overcast sky. He felt pressure in his chest, then he was coughing up sea water, all over his chest and the rock around him.

Hang on. Rock?

Edward's palm swept against the rough granite, but before he could consider this, he felt a stinging sensation on his face as a force knocked his head to the side.

“You idiot!” he heard the furious yell of Nuria, perhaps inches from his ear. “What the hell is your problem?” He felt another slap on his face, harder than the first. His cheek rung from the impacts, and he braced before hearing another voice:

“Stop it, you crazy-head! It's a miracle as it is; be thankful he's alive.” The voice sounded old and weary. Edward cracked his eyes open and craned his neck up to see who had the audacity to talk to Nuria in such a way. This man needed a medal.

A small semi-circle of children surrounded him, as well as an old man Edward recognised to be the boat driver. He looked to his right and saw Nuria, shaking with rage. The old man stepped forward, hand outstretched. Edward took it and shakily got to his feet. He nearly slipped, but the old man held fast. Then Edward noticed that his own clothes were completely sopping wet.

“What?” he groaned, his eyes hurting, unaccustomed to the sudden light.

“You were drowning,” the old man rasped bluntly. “You would've died if your friend hadn't dived down in after you.” Edward's face turned to Nuria, and noticed for the first time she was wet too. Edward gaped helplessly at her while she raised an eyebrow at his confusion.

“What? You're not surprised, are you?” she asked, still trembling with rage. Edward couldn't even mumble a reply. Nuria, save his life? Was it possible? Then Edward shivered as the truth dawned on him. He owed Nuria Heliol his life. Dear God...

Edward looked around him, over the heads of the curious children. They all appeared to be on a small brown rock island, surrounded for miles and miles by the still sea. Edward turned around, and saw a mound of rock, similar to a mountain, though not nearly as big but big enough to obscure his vision of the opposite end of the island. The boat was docked just a few metres away. The island could be one-hundred squared metres, Edward guessed, based on the size of this side.

“Where is this?” Edward croaked. For a drowned boy, his throat was awfully parched. He noticed some of the children, placated in the knowledge that Edward had lived, start to walk off around the tall mound of rock. The old man released his hand, content that Edward could stand.

“Dewford,” he said. “Or what's left of it.” Edward looked around again, sure the man had made a mistake. After all, he'd seen the holiday cards of Dewford, those golden beaches and crystal clear sea. But there was no sand in sight, and the sea was murky and motionless. The old man nodded at Edward's confusion and explained,

“The rain flooded the entire island, with the exception of Granite Cave. The Pokemon inside- what's wrong?” he asked as Edward's knees suddenly buckled again. Nuria, as quick as a Ninjask, shot up to catch him before he fell.

“Edward?” she asked, desperation, not anger, in her voice.

Edward's heart was beating wildly, his mind screaming something of such massive importance that he could feel himself sweating in the cool air.

Granite Cave.

The name sent shivers down his spine. Of what? Fear? Anticipation? Edward didn't know. It was as though the world's most precious memory was just on the tip of his tongue, out of reach. Edward's frustration rose as Nuria continued.

“We need a doctor. He's been dizzy almost all day and has fainted. Is there one nearby?” Nuria pleaded to anyone who would listen. Edward concentrated for a moment and stood carefully, shooting one half-hearted glare at Nuria.

“Now who's babying who?” he demanded. She displayed a slight crooked grin, then punched Edward full force in the stomach. He doubled over, gasping for breath, holding the place of his stomach where a Hitmonchan could've given him a Mach Punch. When he felt comfortable enough to rise (after a few minutes), he noticed all the young trainers, including Nuria, had gone, leaving only the old man.

“Yep, she's crazy all right,” he muttered, then pointed over to the mound of rock. “The doctor will be past that, helping out the Gym Leader.” Without any further comment, he turned back to his boat and climbed aboard.

***

Edward found Nuria cross-legged on the rock, watching the battle with unblinking eyes. An elderly man stood at one end, not quite as decrepit as the boat driver, but still wrinkled around the eyes. But they looked more like laughter lines than anything else. He wore a red t-shirt and casual blue jeans, with two sandals to protect his feet from the rough ground. He had strong, ripped arms, and instead of being hunched over like the boat driver, stood tall and proud with a sharp eye on the battle. His blond hair was long enough to dangle down to his neck.

The battle seemed interesting enough. A Machop stood panting, holding its side to stem the flow of blood seeping through its fingers. Its feet were tangled hopelessly in roots which extended over to the other combatant. A Shroomish stood some feet away from it, frowning at the humanoid from its undefined face. It was bruised and cut, bleeding brown blood, but the wounds appeared to heal as Machop's breathing became more laboured. Then Edward noticed that, standing opposite to who could only have been the Gym Leader, was James. His eyes were furrowed in concentration, a bead of sweat dripping down his face.

“Looks intense,” Edward commented. Nuria nodded and patted the rock next to her. Edward sat. “Looks harder to beat than Rocky, in any case.” To this, Nuria just rolled her eyes.

“Have you forgotten that Rocky's been Gym Leader for only two weeks? Or that he never trained Pokemon until his Mum got a heart attack last month?” She raised an eyebrow at Edward's confusion (for the second time that day). “You seriously thought that was the full-time Gym Leader? As though your underdeveloped Nincada could have even scratched the last Leader's Pokemon. Don't you watch the news? Or listen in school?” The last comment was more of a joke, as it was constantly used by Edward against Nuria. Still, as Nuria mentioned it, it did seem pretty similar to Edward. Suddenly the badge in his bag didn't feel so important.

Of course, Edward knew he had a half-excuse for not knowing. Edward had always wanted more adventure in his life, so if a Pokemon related news broadcast blared on the television, Edward would turn it off or leave the room. The fact was that Edward wanted to make his own adventure, and simply didn't care about what others had done. Nuria's Mum had banned her from watching anything to do with Pokemon, so turned on the Pokemon-related news whenever she was out. Of course, Edward knew he knew far more about Pokemon themselves than Nuria. To prove this point:

“What're the roots doing?” Nuria asked. Edward grinned self assuredly.

“Leech Seed. You know, the seeds germinate on the opponent and drains its energy, bringing it back to the one who released the seeds.” Edward couldn't help it, but the comment sounded patronising. Nuria grunted in reply.

The tense stand-off became too much for James, and he ordered Shroomish to use Stun Spore. The mushroom concentrated for a second, then expelled a golden cloud of small particles from the hole at the top of its head. Slowly it wafted over to the Machop, but its trainer made no attempt to issue a command. Instead, the second the humanoid inhaled within the cloud, he called:

“Facade!”, and instantly the Machop jumped over to the Shroomish, feet tied together by the roots, where it fell to the floor at the mushroom's feet. It struggled to get up, baring its teeth while pushing on the ground. Edward could see it shuddering, parts of its body occasionally freezing up. The display looked so completely pitiful that he was about to demand the match to stop when suddenly it jumped up, taking the Shroomish by surprise, and punched it upwards with such force that the mushroom flew high into the air. It landed a second later with a dull thud, like the noise made if you dropped a pillow. It didn't get up again, and must have been James' last Pokemon because when it was withdrawn he walked away bitterly, allowing one of the spectators to stand up and take his place.

“Wow,” was all Edward could say. A weakened, seeded, paralysed Machop taking out a Shroomish in one blow. Suddenly Edward remembered how under-levelled his Pokemon were. He'd have to find somewhere to train. Fast.

Nuria must have come to the same conclusion, because she jumped up, making her way over to the mound of rocks. Edward followed.

“Where're we going?” he asked as they started to climb.

“I saw someone come out the top here just before you arrived. Probably an entrance to Granite Cave.” Once again, confusion swept over Edward as he tried to work out the mystery in his mind. What was so important about Granite Cave?

They reached the top in seconds, and Edward saw that a hole had been drilled in the top, leading into a dark, hollow tunnel. Edward's heart began to race again. He knew he was close to... to something of immense importance. Something crucial. Involuntarily he took a dazed step forward, and would have fallen in altogether if Nuria hadn't held out an arm. She then leaned in closer to the hole.

“It's dark down there, all right,” she confirmed to Edward.

“Zubat can guide us, right?” Edward asked, a subtle note of anxiety in his voice. Nuria narrowed her eyes at him.

“Yes. Why are you so desperate?” she asked, blatantly suspicious.

“It's all connected!” Edward blurted out, louder than he meant. “Something's in there, I know it is.” Nuria crossed her arms.

“Have you seen a doctor yet? Because all that's down there is rock and wild Pokemon. I'm going to train Ralts for a while. I'll follow you a bit, but when the Pokemon stop, so do I.” She then took off her backpack and rifled through it, producing a torch. Edward remembered he too had one, and soon produced his own. He also sent forth his Zubat. It materialized in a glow of white and began to circle the air, free of the restraints the forest had placed.

“Oh, noblest of masters, I thank thee sir for permitting me this freedom which-”

“Yeah, yeah,” Nuria interrupted. “Can you guide us in the cave?” Zubat looked affronted by the bluntness of Nuria's request, but replied to Edward:

“Of course, thy wish is my command!” And before Edward could thank him, Zubat swerved in the air and darted into the crevice. Edward and Nuria exchanged nervous glances, but Nuria was the first to lower herself into the hole. When her head had disappeared, Edward leant down too. The hole had metal pipes which acted as a ladder, but they were wet and slippery, so he had to hold on, rung and torch in hand, as he descended.

The floor wasn't as far down as Edward expected, though by the time he had got there and switched on his torch, Nuria had already sent out Ralts, who stood straight and unwavering looking up to Nuria. Edward could see her shaking slightly, but not as much as before. For all he knew, it was just the feeling of being under several tonnes of rock. Edward shivered. Why did he have to think that?

Listless, Edward pointed his torch at random around the cavern, illuminating crevices with yellow light. It was a large room with plenty of rocks strewn across the floor. At the other end of the chamber was a hole, darker and more ominous than the rest of the area. He noticed the floor was wet a few metres to his right, right up against the wall. The wall looked different from the other walls, less smooth, more like it was bricked up. Then Edward realized; it must have been the old entrance before the flood. Knowing that only a wall prevented him from drowning sent another shiver down his spine.

Edward knew it was close, whatever it was. Each and every glance was like deja vu, old memories failing to slot into place like a broken jigsaw puzzle. He felt himself sweating. Why?

Suddenly Zubat appeared out of nowhere and made Edward scream. Deep and manly? Not a chance. He let forth a high-pitch squeal, which made Nuria snort somewhere in the darkness.

“What is it?” Edward hissed at the bat.

“Master, I am tremendously sorry if I gave you a fright. Even the bravest of men-”

“Anything else?” Edward demanded. Suddenly he felt bad. “Sorry. I shouldn't be so angry; it was only a mistake. Is there anything else, Zubat?” he said in a softer tone.

“I scouted into the darkest levels. Most of the Pokemon have been evacuated,” he said, just loud enough for Nuria to hear, “the exceptions being members of mine noble race and some curious chaps with shiny eyes.” Edward racked his brain. Shiny eyes? Of course, he realized, Sableye, the darkness Pokemon. Zubats could be dealt by Ralts, but what were Sableye's weaknesses again? Oh yeah, he remembered. They didn't have one.

Nuria marched over to Edward, Ralts following. Edward noticed a rounded grey rock being levitated just above Ralts' head. Edward raised an eyebrow.

“It was Ralts' idea,” Nuria explained. “When she's not battling, she'll still be training.” Edward looked over at the feeling pokemon and saw that, although the rock was directly in front of her, she had positioned her head in Nuria's direction.

“Speaking of training, what about Bayleef?” Edward asked. Nuria shrugged.

“I'll talk to her later. She can't train here anyway, though I'm sure I spotted a Geodude or two out there somewhere.” She thought for a moment, then realised that Edward was still there. “So, anyway, I'll follow you on your journey for the Holy Grail or whatever and battle what we bump into. Okay?” she asked. Edward nodded and walked over to the hole, legs quaking. Whatever he suspected was there was buried deep below the surface of the land, waiting for him.

***

There were many, many floors to Granite Cave, more than Edward thought possible. It seemed as though the earth just added new levels for the humans to stumble through. Even with the torches, Zubat was indispensable. He helped prevent both Nuria and Edward tripping on many occasions, stopped them from falling into chasms and even told Nuria she'd stumbled into a sleeping Graveler minefield, and had to carefully navigate her out (although Edward suspected that this was just revenge for Nuria cutting him off so rudely earlier), as she had no intention of battling something that strong. Ralts just followed behind Nuria at a set distance, never more then two metres away.

With each level the anticipation in Edward's chest grew greater and greater. The occasional rock or crevice seemed so familiar that he'd sworn he'd been in that exact spot before.

The few trainers they encountered by torchlight gave them wide berth. After all, Edward reasoned, they were probably after a wild Pokemon battle to train for the Gym Leader; not to have a battle between powerful Pokemon which could cause the place to cave in.

Nuria hadn't been able to battle once, which may have been smart considering she couldn't see most of what was going on. Edward didn't actually know why she still followed. There hadn't been any Pokemon sightings recently, so why was she still tagging along? Edward nearly pursued this thought when he saw the hole in the floor by his feet.

Here.

He'd reached his destination. His humming heart confirmed it. The light in the cavern flickered as his hand trembled. Sweat dripped in beads down his forehead. In a hole no larger than a metre in diameter was the end of his search.

“Nuria-” he croaked, then felt her hand clamp around his mouth. He panicked for a second, then Nuria pointed with her other hand into the darkness where Edward wasn't shining his torch. Two luminescent bluey-white gems that seemed to-

Edward's heart suddenly stopped. They weren't jewels. They were eyes.

Edward nodded slightly and Nuria released her hand. Where the hell is Zubat? Edward cursed, taking a tentative step backwards towards the ladder to the chamber above. Edward hoped madly that it hadn't seen them. Because then they'd have no choice but to jump into the hole, and now Edward wasn't so sure if he wanted to go in. Was it fear which trembled his hand? As he thought this his foot caught on a pebble and he fell crashing to the floor. Pain shot up his hands which he used to cushion himself, and knew instantly he'd started to bleed.

That's when the Sableye attacked.

Edward felt a slash on his leg and screamed in pain. Nuria started to shout when it was suddenly cut off. Edward's anticipation he felt mere seconds before was now replaced by sheer terror.

Edward could hear more tiny feet approaching, a cruel inhuman chuckle from all around. He curled up into a ball, tucking his bleeding legs into his stomach. Another slash. Then another. Each time he screamed in agony, tears rolling down his cheeks and blood wetting his clothes. He lifted the torch with his one good arm and looked around, the view distorted behind the tears. Bejewelled, menacing creatures of the shadows surrounded him completely in in rows upon rows, sharp teeth bared in psychotic grins. One from the back jumped into the air and came flying towards him. With what he thought to be his final effort, Edward rolled up, brought his torch fist back, and sent a desperate punch with all his remaining energy towards the gremlin. It made no contact; the Sableye just dissolved into shadow. His momentum carried him forward; Edward was sure he'd break his nose on the fall. But instead of colliding with ground, Edward just kept on falling past the floor, through the hole into the chamber below.

***



Next (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14362182&postcount=49)

overlordmewtwo
30th March 2012, 10:44 PM
Oh, boy. That hole seems to be pretty deep. Maybe he'll go into Wonderland! (JK)

A Sableye attack. I never liked those guys, and them attacking just made things worse. Wonder why Edward was feeling anticipation as they moved deeper into the cave.

And Kyogre is dead, too?!? Damn. Whatever is after those guys is very strong. Rayquaza, I'm sure, was lucky to get out alive.

cooloolcool
30th March 2012, 11:38 PM
Great chapter. Hope the next is just as good. Keep 'em coming

Sidewinder
31st March 2012, 1:32 AM
the impacts, and braced before he heard another voice:

Felt as if a 'HE' would make the sentence better if it was inserted between and, and braced.


Edward recognised to be the boat driver

Spelling error. Should be 'recognized'


Nuria, as quick as a Ninjask, shot up to catch him before he fell.


I liked that comparison alot.


The name sent shivers down his spine. Of what? Fear? Anticipation? Edward didn't know. It was as though the world's most precious memory was just on the tip of his tongue, out of reach. Edward's frustration rose as Nuria continued.

I think you did a great job describing that situation.


seemed bruised and cut, bleeding brown blood,

It seemed? I felt like that would be better if you had written that it was. Seemed means that it might not be, but if its seeping blood, then it is. Make sense?


Nuria must have come to the same conclusion, as she jumped up, making her way over to the mound of rocks.

Felt like that would have read better if you had put, "Nuria must have come to the same conclusion, because she jumped up, making her way over to the mound of rocks.


“Master, I am tremendously sorry if I gave you a fright. Even the bravest of men-”

I liked how Zubat reassured Edward. Reminded me of C3PO for some reason lol

Nicely done. I liked the chapter a great deal. I'm still wondering why Edward has so much involved in the fate of the legendary's that have died. It almost seems like he has some sort of precognitive power. It bothered me a little bit that the two of them went so far into Granite cave. I just can't think of a reason why they would venture so far down. Just made me stumble on the reading slightly.

The last bit with Sableye was really good. Only some fics have Pokemon attacking and inflicting actual injury on humans, which I've always thought to be realistic; I'm glad I can count your fic as one of them. It's so real, so deserving, if that makes sense. I also think you're doing a good job improving the characters and making them grow. Nuria is surprisingly violent (Which I like, for some reason.) I see now why you had to split this up into two chapters, and I eagerly await to see what happens to Nuria and Edward. Good job!

Scaldaver
31st March 2012, 5:19 PM
Hey, because of the two similar chapters, the next is now up! Keep in mind (Sidewinder) that, being English, I spell some words differently (like 'organised' instead of 'organized'). I hope everyone can overcome these international differences and get along well. Enjoy!


Chapter Nine

Lost Memories, Part 2

***

The killer resurfaced, finally free of the restraints the water had imposed. It stretched out slightly and looked out upon the flat sea in satisfaction. It then gazed up into the clouded sky. It took less than a second to consider its next course of action, then took off into the sky in pursuit.

***

Edward was sure he was dead. He felt no pain from his lacerations. His head didn't hurt either, though he felt sure he'd bashed against the rock floor. Groaning, he prised open his eyelids and saw a red circle in the middle of his view. Oh great, he thought, a concussion down here. If only Nuria was-

Edward bolted up as he remembered the fight. The half-shriek that Nuria had produced. The Sableye must have her! Edward thought, panic-stricken, I have to-

“Don't worry,” said a voice from behind him. It sounded small and high-pitched, like a little girl's. Edward whipped his head around and of course saw nothing in the darkness. As his head moved the red ball disappeared to overhead.

Edward's heart appeared to hum for a moment. That voice. He knew that voice. He knew those words. But he didn't know where from.

“The Sableye weren't real,” the voice continued happily. “They were just images to scare your friend off. Her Ralts Teleported her away. I'm also holding your Zubat asleep for a while. I need to talk to you, and you alone.” Edward swallowed. What had happened to Zubat? What was going on?

“Why are you scared? Don't be scared. You're my friend, remember? My brother's friend is my friend. We had a nice old chat in your dreams, didn't we? Can't you remember?”

Edward furrowed his brow. He did remember, but how? He certainly couldn't remember talking to the voice before, but it sounded so familiar. And what did it mean, in his dreams?

Suddenly it all fell into place. The memories started to reassert themselves, crystal clear in his mind. He stood up, more confident, but the fear still remained. Because now he knew why he was here.

“You do remember!” the voice chirped happily. “So, have you thought about it much? Do you say yes?” Of course I haven't thought about it, Edward thought, I just remembered now. But he nodded anyway, grimacing as he did so. He knew he could only say yes, because of what it would mean if he said no.

“Oh good! Hey, wait, can you see? Oh sorry! I forget that you humans need light to see. Here you go!” Instantly the chamber exploded into bright light, causing Edward to shield his eyes.

When he was able to squint, he made out the dark brown walls, the sharp points of the stalactites and stalagmites and, most notably, the figure dead in the centre of the circular chamber. As Edward's eyes adjusted, he made out the sharp, long, red wings; the red body, small arms and tail feathers; the long white neck capped with a sharp, feline head with a red triangular band in its nose. As she shifted, Edward made out the hollow blue triangle on her chest.

Edward knew he was looking at a real live legendary Pokemon. A Pokemon of such power that it could atomize him with just intense concentration.

A Pokemon that he knew couldn't survive without him.

Unconsciously, Edward brought an empty Pokeball from his deep pockets and threw it at the Pokemon. She smiled as her form became redder and redder, and as she lost her shape she whispered, with a voice so soft it could have been a breeze, “Thank-you.”

And the Pokeball closed, clicking to confirm successful capture. The light began to fade so Edward had to train his torchlight beam on the ball. Edward's mind both raced and cemented. His new memories and old slotted together now, showing him the lies he'd been under the influence of his entire life. But he knew he could be certain of at least one thing.

He'd just caught Latias.

***

Eight Hours Previously, Petalburg Forest

The space was so cramped that the two couldn't even get inside their sleeping bags, so they resignedly slept under them, head to toe. Unfortunately for Edward, Nuria was a fidget. Barely a moment passed when she didn't shift her position, keeping Edward wide-eyed in the orangey glow of the tent. At one point, Edward noticed something kicked over from Nuria's feet, a little purple waist bag Edward hadn't ever noticed before. Nuria kicked it again in her sleep, and the contents spilled out. Edward's face turned white, then, with shaking fingers, gently, cautiously, picked up the offending item.

“Nuria,” he half whispered, half choked, “what the hell is this?” Nuria rolled over, eyes half closed, and caught sight of what he was holding. Her eyes didn't even widen.

“Defence. What do you think?” She rolled over again.

Edward, arms shaking, opened the waist bag, tentatively placed the gun in, and pushed it as far away from him as possible.


The dream started off nightmarish and confusing; Nuria had been chasing him around a storm-ridden Petalburg with a gun shaped like a Bayleef. No matter which way he had run, she'd always turn up and point it at him, laughing maniacally at his horror. He turned again to run, but suddenly came face to face with a glowing image of a bird-like Pokemon. Of course, it was much bigger than the average Swellow, had a much longer neck and was more white than blue. Edward realised it looked nothing like a bird; more like a dragon really. Something tripped on the tip of Edward's mind. He'd seen pictures of this Pokemon. What was it called again? The unconscious part of his mind noted that the wind and rain had calmed down. All was eerily quiet and still.

All fear had nearly evaporated and Edward could tell this wasn't a regular dream. He felt conscious he even though he knew he was sleeping. He frowned. It didn't make sense.

“Don't worry,” the dragon said in a playful young girl's voice. Its mouth didn't move, but Edward heard the words crystal clear in his head. The words acted as sedation; almost immediately Edward's mind was cleared of all suspicion and confusion. Everything seemed clear now.

“You must listen to what I say, for it is the most important thing you will ever hear.” The voice didn't sound playful any more, but cold and serious. Edward didn't even consider protesting in his state of complete calmness. “There is a creature out there systematically attempting to wipe out every living creature in the universe for reasons unknown. Since the dawn of time this being has obliterated countless planets, reaped infinite souls. It did this by impersonating itself as an Ancient, a being you term as 'Legendary', and killing the Ancients one at a time in order to cause instability in the world. You have seen what happened when it killed Groudon, just imagine what catastrophes would take place when all of us are gone forever.

“My brother has chosen you to be our saviour; I can detect his presence on you. He did this for reasons I cannot fathom. Perhaps he expected it to expect us to be with the 'elite' trainers, and thought you a good counter to this. You appear to be too ill-experienced in the ways of Pokemon training to be considered a target, but I don't know what his objectives were: connecting ourselves ina psychic fielf would alert the murderer to our presence. Anyway, we must request – no, beg you to capture us, to help make our presence unknown to it.

“So,” she said, optimism now ripe in her voice, “any questions?”

Even in his doped-up state Edward's head had buzzed with questions.

“Who is the killer?” Edward mumbled. The dragon giggled a little, high-pitched laugh.

“We don't know, silly!” the dragon said. “If we did, we'd do something, wouldn't we?”

Edward focused his already razor-sharp mind. So, he was being asked to protect a dragon and her brother from a mystery genocidalist? How is that fair?

“It's not,” the dragon said bluntly, still unnervingly optimistic. “But you have to, don't you? The ramifications of our deaths will still impact the world, though maybe not as much as Groudon and Kyogre's. For example, after Kyogre's death the seas will become still and all rainfall will stop. When Rayquaza itself is ready to flee, it may all be too - ” The voice broke of suddenly, as though not bearing to continue the train of thought. “Well, it would be disastrous for all life on land as well as the ocean and sky. Our deaths will be similar; we have a specific balance in nature, and disrupting it will be apocalyptic.”

Edward was silent, processing the information. The order had rendered him unable to panic, but he could still understand the implications of saying no.

“So, you chose me... just because I'm weak?” he asked, feeling just a bit sad. Talk about rubbing it in...

“Well,” the dragon said, trepidation in its voice, “there may have been another reason my brother chose you. I can detect the presence of another Ancient on you; a presence I cannot identify. The scent is weak on you, but still there all the same. You must have encountered another Legendary before, therefore another Legendary trusts you. This makes you more reliable than any other-”

Suddenly the city blinked out of existence to be replaced by unending darkness. After less than a second the desolate landscape returned.

“You begin to wake,” the dragon said sadly. “I fear you may not recall this encounter. I have developed a psychic connection between us so we may communicate again. Just remember: you may be the only hope for my brother and me. Seek me out in Granite Cave on Dewford Island.”

“Wait,” Edward muttered, feeling light-headed and confused. “What is your name, again?” The dragon giggled again.

“Latias. And remember, meet me at Granite-”

The dream ended.

***

Two Hours Previously, Route 105

The water started to boil, just under the spot, hundreds of metres away, maybe a kilometre away. The water tossed and turned, first gently but then more violently, when suddenly the ocean exploded. A massive green serpent shot out, and disappeared, spiralling high into the sky, through the hole in the clouds. As the tip of its tail disappeared, the clouds closed up, no evidence of the serpent remaining.

Edward expected to hear as much panic as he was feeling. Because if that was... If it was really...

Suddenly Edward noticed himself weakening, his consciousness
seeping away. His vision wasn't blurring, his mind wasn't sluggish, but everything seemed to move further away, as though his mind was being drained away. He tried to fight to feeling, but he felt his legs buckling, his body lurching forward. He flipped over the rail, and fell. He never felt the impact. By then, he was too far gone.


Latias hovered above the ground some five metres away, smiling happily at Edward in the dark city. Shock flowed through him as he recalled the last dream. The dragon seemed to notice this.

“Don't worr-”

“Stop!” Edward roared, throwing up his arms in protest. “Worry is good! Worry gives you rationality! Don't take it away from me!” Latias nodded and rose slightly higher into the air.

“Okay then. We must move on to other matters.” The playful voice was gone once more. “You seem to be able to recall slight details of the dream, which is probably why you reacted in the way you did to Kyogre's death. As you have seen, Rayquaza is on the run and is soon to be killed. There is nothing we can do to prevent this. But you can still aid my brother and me, for the time being at any rate. Optimistically, we could just outlive you-”

“Gee, thanks,” Edward muttered.

“-or, realistically speaking, the killer will still detect and kill us after a while.”

“And me?” Edward asked. The dragon tilted her head slightly.

“It'll probably leave you alone,” the dragon said, and moved on to another comment before Edward could interject again. “But the point is that we don't have long to live... alone. My brother and I have formulated a new plan since I had last contacted you. We think that we could get some help to fight this creature from other Ancients, but only with your help.”

“That's nonsensical,” Edward snorted. “Why can't you just get them to help by yourselves?” he asked. Latias shook her head.

“Ancients are, as their names imply, ancient and stuck in their ways. They are extremely territorial and not very trusting, which is the main reason for why they constantly fight. If my brother or I were to ask, it would appear as though we are encroaching on their territory. But if you talk to them...” her voice trailed off.

“So you want me to catch-”

“Oh, no,” Latias said hurriedly, “catching them all would just lead the murderer to you quicker. You just need to convince them to help, to join our side when the time to retaliate arises.”

“Okay, so you want me to sweet-talk a bunch of paranoid elites into helping you out? Oddly enough, I don't think it'll work.” Edward felt surprised he'd said that, although he was too angry to care. How could he be asked to do all this when there are thousands out there better qualified than he?

“The Ancients understand one thing only; power." Latias went on, ignoring Edward's tone. "Please them in battle and they will heed your warning. After all, Ancients can be caught, as proven by your champion, correct?” Edward nodded. He recalled somewhere in the back of his mind that the Hoenn champion had Moltres in his team. “And you are truly the only one that can help. A psychic link like this requires much time and power and can never go away. If I tried to make such a connection with another my power would be so limited I couldn't even run when the killer turns its eye on me.”

“What about your brother?” Edward asked desperately. Latias shook her head sadly.

“He is too weak already and far too busy checking to see which Ancients are still with us. Who knows, an Ancient or two may have been felled when the world was fixated on Groudon's death.”

Edward gritted his teeth. Why couldn't they have come up with this suicidal plan before he was chosen? Why wasn't there some sort of plan B? Why hadn't something been done sooner? He felt more livid than he had ever felt before, and he thought he was about to scream when the wording of the first part of the speech struck him.

“What do you mean please them in battle? And I thought you said you chose me because I was weak, so why ask me to fight Legendaries?” Edward asked, voice tainted with outrage.

“There is not a chance that you could possibly hope to defeat an Ancient. They don't have the limitations of regular Pokemon – you cannot damage them, only outmanoeuvre them for a small amount of time then be punished.” Edward's face turned white, anger dissipating. “We formulated this plan because you are weak but smart. That is why you are the perfect choice. You can travel the land, unafraid, but still recruit the Ancients by using your intellect, not brawn in battle. Intelligence is just as powerful as physical strength.”

Edward's body felt paralysed with the enormity of the task he was being given. Latias sagged her head.

“I feared you would react like this. But you must see that you must do this. If you do not, all that you care about shall be obliterated as though they never existed.”

Edward felt hollow, like the smallest of breezes could send him flying. Fight a Legendary? With what, a Mudkip, Nincada and Zubat? All that you care about shall be obliterated as though they never existed. The words rebounded in his skull for what seemed like forever. Finally, they hit a nerve - the only tiny, irrational nerve that bolstered his resolution. After all, he reasoned, what am I living for anyway?

“You can train them, of course,” Latias interjected, reading his mind. Edward nearly replied when he felt a tugging sensation on his stomach followed by instant light-headedness. He stumbled and fell to the wet, cold ground.

“You are being rescued," Latias moaned. "When you awake you may forget again, but try to remember in the crevices of your mind to MEET ME IN GRANITE CAVE!” The last words were blasted at him with such force that his ears rung with those words until the world went black.



Next...April Fool's Chapter (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14363443&postcount=52)
Next real chapter (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14403672&postcount=62)

cooloolcool
31st March 2012, 5:30 PM
That made sense and I remember some parts that didn't and now do. Great writing!

overlordmewtwo
31st March 2012, 6:05 PM
I now have another guess as to who the killer might be. One phrase gave me a major clue:


Since the dawn of time this being has obliterated countless planets, reaped infinite souls. It did this by impersonating itself as an Ancient, a being you term as 'Legendary', and killing the Ancients one at a time in order to cause instability in the world

This sounds very similar to a part of Giratina's Platinum Pokedex entry: It was banished for its violence.

Giratina, the being of antimatter, was violent when Arceus first created it; I'm sure it was feared for wiping out entire cities and civilizations with its power. I think some of the reason it did this was because it questioned the authority of Arceus. Arceus, to counteract Giratina's violent behavior, removed some of Giratina's power, created the Griseous Orb, and weakened its attacking strength, thus making it less a threat to civilization. At the same time, Giratina was given its own world where it was the undisputed master.

Then comes the second part of the Pokedex entry: It silently gazed upon the old world from the Distortion World.

I'm sure Giratina is still very angry about Arceus taking away some of its power, so to get revenge on it, it's killing legendaries, causing disorder in the world, and evening out the odds of it winning.

Of course, I could be completely wrong. Either way, I look forward to the moment when the killer's identity is revealed. Cool that Edward caught Latias, and good job referring back to everything. Now his fainting when Rayquaza shot out of the water makes a lot more sense.

Keep up the good work!

Scaldaver
1st April 2012, 12:03 AM
Hey, as it is 12 O'clock on April 1st it is time to reveal that this is an April Fool chapter. It is based on a Pokemon created by Dragonfree, so to understand the chapter fully it would be good to read the best piece of writing ever (http://dragonflycave.com/tqftl/?c=molrai) before or after reading this.

This chapter is not a real chapter with no continuation or any reference in the future. Believing this chapter will earn you the name Silly-Billy, and will be hounded to the end of time by your own guilt.

Obviously I'd never end it at only 10 chapters, or end it in such an offhand way. Enjoy!

April Fool's!


The murderer rose into the air, finally free of the restraints the salt-water had presented. It looked towards the sky in search of that elusive serpent. It saw nothing.

The murderer found its thoughts wandering to the day it all began. The day it was born in the maelstrom of fire, ice, thunder and psychic energy...

Mew, Moltres, Zapdos and Articuno had been playing at Articuno's place in the Seafoam Islands. It was in a particularly exciting game of tag that that they came across the elusive Mist Stone (which had materialised due to a glitchy, washed up itemfinder turning on and off one-hundred times). After attacking it in apparent 'self defence', some of the attributes of each of the Legendaries had been embedded themselves within a single being.

The murderer was that being.

It had power unlike any other. And it knew it too. It knew it could do as it liked, kill who it liked. It could erase the memories of everyone the trainer knew, even the trainer's parents, so for aeons it remained undetected. Then the scientists came. It knew its well-being was at stake. Then it realised – the only way to ensure personal safety would be to eradicate all threats. All beings.

And so it started its mission, to kill everything everywhere.

The killer sensed something behind it. Turning, it made out a small island a mile away. It took a deep breath. All this Legendary murdering was hard work.

Time for some senseless small-scale killing.

***

The world seemed dazzling when Edward exited the cave. Then his vision became clearer, and he felt like diving back into the hole.

From his perch at the top of the island, Edward saw that the small, rocky landscape was more more of a wasteland than it had been previously. Ahead of him crater-holes littered the ground and the air smelled of ozone and burning. Then he noticed that the surrounding sea was glimmering with the sheen of a crystal... with a start he realised it was frozen solid.

An earth-shattering screech filled the air, causing dread to pour into Edward's every fibre. He whipped his head around in search of the noise, when he saw it behind him.

Towering high in the air was a creature that exuded more power than Edward could have felt possible for any living being. Edward found himself glued to the floor.

It was a great bird, predominately lightning-yellow in colour, with a long, orange beak and quite a few odd features. First of all, its powerful looking wings were tipped with a frosty blue, matching the solidified ocean in colour. It had a similarly coloured six-foot long elegant ribbon that wafted in the wind behind it – a tail, as it appeared. At odds with this, it had a flowing fire streaming forcefully from its forehead – Edward could feel the heat from where he was standing. It also had two stumpy, black legs which ended with large, orange, three-toed bird feet, each toe connecting to a razor-sharp claw the size of Edward's head.

Then Edward saw what it was doing. Its eyes were shining a luminescent pink, and before it many human figures hovered, each coated in a pink veil. None of them moved, each (metaphorically) frozen completely, when the bird blinked its eyes and the humans fell ten feet to the floor. None of them moved.

Edward stared in horror at the freshly-made corpses on the floor. What had the creature done to them? Edward scanned the group for Nuria, hoping desperately that she wasn't there, that she had escaped.

She hadn't. She looked wide-eyed at the sky, unseeing.

Anger, rage, then outrage rushed through him. He gritted his teeth; clenched his fist; breathed raggedly. He faced the bird, and roared:

“YOU MURDERER! EDWARD WILL KILL YOU TO DEATH!!!!!!” And he threw his Pokeball high into the air, where Latias appeared. In the time it took to form, Edward had whipped out his Pokedex and pointed it at the monster. It spoke in its soft, feminine voice:

“Molzapart, otherwise known as Unodostres, species unknown. This is a mysterious Pokémon that is fire/electric/ice/flying/psychic-type and can know five attacks at a time. No data avaiable.” Edward was about to put it back in his pocket when it started to speak again,

“If some trainer thinks he can capture it, nothing can stop it from killing the trainer and his Pokémon and use its psychic powers to make everyone forget the trainer, even his parents.”

Edward furrowed his eyebrows, and briefly considered whether 'avaiable' meant something along the lines of 'available except for this next tit-bit of information as well as the previous information.' Then he remembered his anger and roared:

“LATIAS, EDWARD SAYS USE-” but when he looked up he saw that Latias wasn't there, but several metres below on the floor surrounded by a coat of ice. His heart stopped and he saw Molzapart glaring at him menacingly. His anger left and was immediately replaced by dread. He turned to run but, being on top of a small mountain of loose rock, tripped over and skidded to the other side of the island. Cut, bruised and bleary-eyed, Edward staggered to his feet, picking up a rock as he did so, and started to stumble away, towards the ice.

Suddenly Edward's feet couldn't feel the floor, and he noticed the world had gone pink and the sky was rushing to meet him. He turned slowly in the air, and found Molzapart mere metres away. Edward screamed as the great bird opened its beak to screech, and lobbed the rock - neigh – pebble at the monster. Edward could feel nothing but dread. He knew he was about to die, and there was nothing he could do to prevent it. He saw his pebble sail pathetically towards the behemoth. He nearly chuckled. As though something so small could-

It made contact.

The explosion was gargantuan – fire blossomed everywhere for miles around, created a hellish dome of fire. The sound itself produced more force than a gigantic car crash. Edward felt himself falling, then nothing.

***
Epilogue

Edward awoke later, surrounded by anxious trainers. The second they sat up they started praising him and clapping him on the back. They said that after he had killed the Molzapart everybody had awakened as though nothing had happened, which everybody put down to the fact that Nuria was too essential to the plot to die in the ninth chapter, and that the G rating for this chapter couldn't possibly allow for all this death.

Suddenly Latias was there too and said that Molzapart had been the killer all along, and now it was dead everything would turn honky-dory again. She gave Edward her Pokenav number, said goodbye and sped off into the horizon to reunite with her brother.

The he saw Nuria. He felt so happy in that one second of seeing her he got on one knee and proposed immediately; she said yes and they abandoned their Pokemon journeys to got married there and then at the tender age of thirteen. The ring-bearer was Bayleef, who had forgiven Nuria for all her misdeeds and apologised herself. All the other Pokemon were released and went on to live happy lives of joy and happinessness. Then they went home.

Finally, the weather patterns all over the world were cleared up because of the skilled ocarina-playing of a small girl somewhere near Johto.

The End...



Next Real Chapter (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14403672&postcount=62)

cooloolcool
1st April 2012, 12:56 AM
Umm. Ok. Not what I was expecting. Good job

The Great Butler
1st April 2012, 2:37 AM
Hahahahahaahaha oh WOW. You greased us all up for this super-epic adventure and then pulled the rug out from under us brilliantly in this last chapter. I'm enjoying a great laugh at all of this.

Excellent job, you little sneak, you got us good. Excellent job.

The killer's identity was a nice surprise, and when it looked like Nuria died, I actually was pretty horrified. I have to admit though, it's hard to focus on much other than the hilarious surprise.

overlordmewtwo
1st April 2012, 3:32 AM
Honestly, the ending disappointed me. The fictional Pokemon (Molzapart) in itself was all right, but other than that, everything in this chapter IMO was just... off. The story didn't seem to have any closure, and the ending abrupt. Latias with a Pokenav number? That's strange. Other than Edward, I thought Latias were timid around humans. And what about Latios? Why did he choose Edward? And where was he in all this? Both questions were never answered.

Admittedly, I may be thinking this just because I am a logical person and prefer stories/movies intended to be written as an epic adventure having a satisfying ending, but still, I feel that there should have been more.

The breaking of the fourth wall was kind of funny, though.

Scaldaver
1st April 2012, 12:16 PM
April Fool's Day, everyone! Check the last chapter to get an update!

Sidewinder
1st April 2012, 2:34 PM
Groaning, he prised open his eyelids and saw a red circle in the middle of his view.

Spelling error I believe. Should be 'Pried'


A Pokemon of such power that it could atomize him with just intense concentration.

Hah, I liked that


“Defence. What do you think?” She rolled over again.

Spelling error...'Defense'


Outmanoeuvre

Spelling...'Outmaneuver'

Ah, English, well in that case. If the spelling errors I mentioned in this post or the previous are out of touch, it's only because I'm not familiar with what you were referring to when you said that you were English. I mean, I get what you were saying, but I don't know enough about how you spell your words to know the difference between those, and common spelling errors. Please be paitent with me and I will try and learn the difference.

As for the chapter, nicely done. The illusion created by Latias was a nice touch, and I'm glad you added it. Although some part of me wanted the Sableye to be attacking the group, it probably does work out better that they were not haha. The plot is strting to thicken in an appealing way, although the explanation of the killer seemed somewhat rushed. Maybe it's just me, but I like to find out about something as eluive as this assassin over time, instead of having alot of info dumped on me at one time. Although, since Latias and her brother need Edward to understand what's going on so that he'll follow their plan, it makes sense. And btw, nice job on the explanation of the killer.


“There is not a chance that you could possibly hope to defeat an Ancient. They don't have the limitations of regular Pokemon – you cannot damage them, only outmanoeuvre them for a small amount of time then be punished.”

I liked that part quite a bit. As I was reading was written right before it, I could picture Edward about to psyche himself up to the challenge of capturing the Ancients. Literally standing taller and puffing up his chest. Just to have Latias be like, "No, moron. You don't have a chance at capturing them at all. You only captured me because I let you. You suck, now listen when I'm talking to you."

Classic. Nicely done.

I liked the chapter alot. Revealed some more plot, added some new characters, and established some clear goals for the future. I'm eager to see how Edward can bumble through trying to get the ancients on his side. The addition of Latias I'm still up in the air about. This can go several different ways, and I hope you make the best of it. She was well written, and I felt like I could connect with her. Just be sure to keep her grounded in a way readers can relate to, which is something I'm sure you can do.

Great job!

And XD on the April Fool's chapter. I glanced at it before you posted that it was a joke and was severely disappointed. I'm glad you decided to not end it there, as it would have ruined everything for me, especially when your fic has obvious promise. Nicely done, you fooled me for a few hours lol

overlordmewtwo
1st April 2012, 2:40 PM
Thank goodness. You got me there. The only thing that was funny about all this was the breaking of the fourth wall.

Scaldaver
1st April 2012, 2:48 PM
Pried - past participle of pry.

Defence - English

Outmanoeuvre is another spelling.

I thought about drawing out info about the killer, but I realised that a) dreams don't last very long and b) too long an explanation and Edward could have died drowning. I have withdrawn plenty of information, but I think I've just given enough info present a quest and a good reason for it.

I'm glad a few people got the joke, as, due to some of your feedback from it, I was afraid I'd lost some of you forever. Thankyou for your continued devotion!

P.S and it is funnier if you read the Molzapart thing that Dragonfree wrote (at the top of the chapter). Yes, I'm a Dragonfree fan.

Kutie Pie
2nd April 2012, 2:05 AM
Ignoring the April Fool's chapter (which I figured would've been a joke even if you hadn't updated it was because of how sloppily written it was, no offense xD), here's my review like I promised. I'll pass off on mentioning the grammar errors and some of the spelling errors because others have mentioned it before, and you do have a beta-reader (I believe, you mentioned it a couple of times). Especially since you have Dragonfree and Great Butler looking at this, so it'd be repetitive for me to point them out. And you have noticeable improvement (you aren't using beige prose as much like you have been in earlier chapters, that's a plus), so that helps a lot.

I must say, you are full of surprises, yet are a quick learner. The first few chapters are "meh", honestly. We expect it to be a bit of a normal journey fic with the mention of some Legendaries fighting, and one killing the other. No biggie, right? Well, remembering the theory (canon or not, I can't exactly recall where this theory came from) about Legendaries keeping the world at bay, that was getting my hopes up for this being a really cool story. It's about Legendaries being hunted down during a journey fic, there has to be something epic going on here.

Well, after about eight chapters, we learn Edward has been chosen to help the Legendaries. Now why? Latias didn't really explain why he was chosen, which is a risky move to take writing this. Without an explanation, we would be tempted to call Edward a Gary Stu (and a dull one at that). However, you established early on he and Nuria are rookies, and that they will be rookies for a long time. Their struggles do feel a little forced, but this has saved them from being called Mary Sues. The communications with their Pokémon, while normally a trait of a Mary Sue, is explained because they have taken classes to understand the language. This isn't new, actually, I do recall one other story where it was mentioned there were classes dedicated to learning the Pokémon speech. And you did mention this is an alternative universe, which does help pass it off as normal. And as time went on, the characters have been getting more and more fleshed out, so they are showing signs of likability. There is still room for improvement and addition, don't worry. These two have this charm to them I can't exactly describe, but it grows with each new chapter.

I'm gonna go ahead and point out the usage of levels here. Don't worry, there is nothing wrong with it. It's just taking me a bit to get adjusted to it. Personally, it feels a little weird for people to care about Pokémon reaching certain levels when we normally just watch them grow stronger and learn new techniques as time goes on. But since the PokéDexes are being used to keep track of it, I can't exactly complain. Just letting you know how I'm feeling about it.

Now I like how you are keeping the killer's identity a secret. You have of yet to give clues as to what it looks like except that it is passing itself off as a Legendary. Now, I suspect Mewtwo to be the culprit (which would make sense), but the killer going down into the deepest trench was what strangled that suspicion of mine (that, and it's an alternative universe, Mewtwo might not have been created here). So it has to be something even stronger, though I'll back up overlordmewtwo's guess of it being Giratina. But even then, Giratina keeps track of the antimatter (which is important to the universe in itself) and does guide spirits to the other side. So even if Giratina's rage got a hold of it, it would know of its duties and not go out-of-control like that. But it has to be a canonized Pokémon, I would honestly be a little upset if it was a made-up Pokémon just for the story. Still, your story-telling would ease me down some, as it is entertaining and interesting.

Oh yeah, the Pokémon are great, by the way, they each have their own little personality that tells them apart from one another. Zubat will have to be my favorite, there was something charming about his poor speech xD. And I giggled a lot when the three Nincada mentioned their secret alter. That is adorable.

Overall, your first story isn't a disappointment in the least, and I'd like to see more. It's not the best I've seen, but the potential for greatness is there. I expect a mind-blowing climax when we reach it, you are getting better at writing and story-telling, it'd be a shame to see it falter.

The Great Butler
2nd April 2012, 3:41 AM
I actually fell for it XD;

Scaldaver
10th April 2012, 10:33 AM
Well, it's been a while since the April Fools chapter, but here's the real chapter 10. Enjoy, and remember to post sme criticism!

Chapter 10

Abandonment

The clouds whipped past the killer at lighting speed. Then it was above the clouds, high in the atmosphere where the sun shone harshly and brilliantly. It turned slowly in the sky, taking in the view in all directions.

There! A speck of green in the distance becoming ever smaller. The murderer shot forward at supersonic speed, determined to catch up. Determined to kill.

***

Edward's ears buzzed in the silence of the chamber as he concentrated on the memories reasserting themselves in his mind. After a minute he blinked and finally understood. His breathing quickened, becoming ragged as his vision began to swim. His arms and legs trembled as he came to a conclusion.

I'm going to die, he realised, tears springing up in his eyes. Either by the Legendaries or by the killer itself. He found his thoughts wandering to his parents. His family. His friends. How would they react when he was discovered dead one day? Weep? Forget? After a few years would he be forgotten completely, just another name in an old newspaper?

But the worst part was that he knew it was inevitable. He had to go on this mission, just to give the world a slim, minuscule chance at survival. A world he probably wouldn't be part of.

Shut up! a small part of his mind protested in disdain. Stop feeling so sorry for yourself. You've got a job to do! Get to it!

Edward rose shakily to his feet, taking sharp, painful inhalations of breath. He felt so weak, so pathetic. Why hadn't Latios chosen Nuria, with all her strength and stubbornness? He shook his head sharply. How could he wish such a fate on any other?

“EDDY?” a voice bellowed from above, echoing ominously in the pitch-black tunnels. Edward's heart skipped a beat. Nuria? Speak of the devil...

“EEEDDYYY?” Nuria bellowed again, louder than before.

“NURIA!” he roared in reply, speaking for the first time in ages. Suddenly Edward felt another presence in the room, and suddenly the world exploded into light and colour. Dazed and disorientated, Edward couldn't process the sound entering his ears for a while. When his eyesight cleared, he saw Nuria holding him by the shirt, attempting to hold him up. Her face, filled with rage, was only centimetres from his own. Ralts stood behind Nuria, standing tall and straight, the grey rock a few feet above her head.

“What?” he mumbled in his dazed state.

“I said,” she spat, “what the hell happened? Ralts saved me from the Sableye, but couldn't go back for you. Apparently something was blocking her or something. She could detect something was down there, that it had something to do with a psychic connection or whatever. So, let me ask again. What happened down there to you? Why are you perfectly fine even though Zubat,” she moved to the left slightly to reveal a snoring Zubat on the floor, “has been asleep for the past five minutes up here on land when he was down there with us only minutes ago? What is going on?”

Edward stared into Nuria's deep, fierce eyes, trying to formulate a reply. Could he tell the truth? No, you idiot, a small part of him chided, why get her killed too? The he realised. For her to survive, to live an easy life, she'd have to stay away from him. Edward's resolve strengthened as his face formed a mask of passive aggression, and he pushed Nuria's hands off him.

“Nothing happened down there,” he said, an edge of anger in his voice. Nuria recoiled slightly, unused to Edward retaliating in such a way. “I have no idea why your strange little Ralts can't even Teleport straight, or why my Zubat decided to take a nap. But you know what? It's not your problem, so bug off.” He turned on his heel, took a Pokeball from his pocket, and made down to the base of the island, recalling Zubat into his Pokeball as he did so. He heard nothing behind him for several seconds, then the thundering of footsteps behind him. He felt a grip on his shoulder, then he was whirled around and found himself staring into the eyes of Nuria once again. But she wasn't as angry or hurt as Edward expected. She looked more worried, scanning his face intently for any sign to cause her alarm.

“What happened to you?” she muttered softly, half a question, half to herself. Edward hardened his expression again.

“Just get lost, Nuria. I can make my way by myself. Why don't you just make up your petty squabbles with Bayleef, take on the Gym Leader and just go on? I can make my own way on my own journey. I don't need – want you there to slow me down and keep bullying me.” At the mention of the b-word, Nuria's grip slackened, her eyes widening slightly. Edward turned and carried on walking several dozen metres to a large boulder, where he walked behind, crouched down, and started to cry softly.

***

Nuria stood petrified in her place on the mountainside. Her, a bully? To Edward? The shock was too much. She considered following, but decided against it. And she had something to work out. Something had happened to Edward that he wasn't telling her about. And she intended to find out what. She whirled around and found her Ralts standing obediently behind her, gazing at her through her helmet.

“What happened to him?” Nuria demanded. Ralts bowed slightly (which Nuria still found strange) then straightened up, and Nuria could sense her obscured eyes burrowing into her.

“Whatever stopped me from Teleporting is in his pocket, most probably in a Pokeball. There is a strong psychic field around him, too. I can't read his mind or emotions. Something is blocking me from seeing what's going on. But I can tell this much: he is fairly confused.” Nuria sighed. Ralts was being as useless as always.

“Okay, well return for now until it's time to battle.” As Ralts dissolved in red, she bowed slightly again. Nuria furrowed her eyebrows. What's all this bowing about? The grey rock seemed to dissolve too. Ralts must really like the rock or something, she thought.

Nuria took out her second full Pokeball and threw it gently in the air. Bayleef materialised in white and immediately shook her head.

“What it it?” the leaf Pokemon spat. Nuria held her glare at the dinosaur-like Pokemon.

“We need to talk.”

***

When Edward stopped the steady stream of tears, he wiped his face dry and looked out into the horizon. What had he just done? How could he do all this by himself? He patted the sides of his trousers, feeling the six Pokeballs in his pocket, two of which were still unoccupied. Three of which were occupied with regular Pokemon with their own hopes and dreams. Would it be fair to take them? He felt a pain in his chest as he imagined poor little Mudkip being tossed around fighting the beings of pure power. But how could he do this impossible task without them? Latias, though the strongest weapon in his arsenal, was completely useless in this quest.

So, he wondered, where now?

He narrowed his eyes as he realised that he had no idea where to go next. Where did the Legendaries live, anyway? Edward ran through all the possibilities in his head. Rayquaza? No, Latias said there was no point, and besides, the killer was probably hot on its trail. What other Hoenn Legendaries were there? Hang on, those mineral monsters, what were they called again? The Pegis? The Regons? He gritted his teeth. Okay, he thought, I'll just have to do a little research on Hoenn-

He gasped as he realised the true magnitude of the mission. There weren't just Hoenn Legendaries that needed recruited, but Legendaries from everywhere else too. He'd heard a few legends from other regions – the stories of great birds, ferocious beasts and dangerous psychic beings. All of them? he thought, pulling on his hair in frustration, Every single one? Everywhere? Oh God...

Suddenly he sensed a presence behind him; the indescribable feeling that he was being watched. He turned slightly and saw Nuria standing arms crossed behind him. Anger flashed in him for a second. Why wouldn't she just get the hint?

“I know what you're going to say,” she began, cutting him off anything he was going to say, “and I have a proposition for you. You. Me. Battle. Whoever wins decides what happens next.”

Edward snorted. “Yeah, right. If you win I'll just go anyway.”

Nuria grinned venomously, baring her teeth at him. “Well, this plan is based on the fact that I can physically force you to do anything I want. The only defence you think you have is your Pokemon to protect you from me. I can get rid of your security, and then you'll have to tell me what's going on, or at least take me along.” At the end of the speech she cracked her knuckles, causing Edward to gulp. He knew she was right, he'd have to do as she said if he didn't have Pokemon to fend her off for him if she really wanted to come. Besides, he thought, all she has at the moment is Ralts. Three on one...why not?

“Sure,” he said, grinning self-assuredly. He looked around. “Here's a good place,” he said simply, and threw a Pokeball into the air. Nincada appeared in a flash of white and his Pokeball bounced off the ground into Edward's hands. There's nothing Ralts can do against Nincada, he thought happily. Then he saw Nuria's Pokemon appear with a white glow.

“Bayleef?” he spluttered incredulously, Nuria grinning at the look on his face. Then Edward composed himself. It's fine, he thought calmly to himself. Nincada's a bug type. He had nothing to worry about here. Then he cringed as he realised the ground-type attribute of Nincada undid this, as well as the fact he didn't know any of Nincada's moves except Dig, which he knew wouldn't work in this case. As he stumbled to grab his Pokedex from his pocket, Nuria started with the first move.

“Please use Razor Leaf!” Nuria yelled, and soon a maelstrom of of green leaves engulfed the insect. Edward could hear it cry out in pain.

“Dig! And stay down!” Edward shouted, determined to stall for time. Finally Nincada's information had loaded: Level eleven... Edward scanned the screen until he found what he was looking for. Moves! He scrolled down and read them off: Dig, Scratch, Harden, Leech Life and Sand-Attack. Edward grinned. Leech Life could do some major damage, as well as heal Nincada itself.

“Nincada,” he shouted, hoping the bug could hear him however deep he was underground, “come up and use Leech Life!”

“Poison Powder, please!” Nuria shouted, and Bayleef opened her mouth and exhaled a dark purple cloud of poison which swirled in the air around the dinosaur. Suddenly the ground underneath Bayleef exploded, revealing Nincada who crashed into her. He then opened his one-toothed mouth and bit hard into the leaf Pokemon's side. He stayed biting for a few seconds while Bayleef tried to throw him off by tossing and bucking. But it hung tight as it drained the grass-type's blood, when suddenly it let go. Edward narrowed his eyes when he noticed the the Nincada breathing labouringly, coughing slightly. Poisoned.

“Please do Razor Leaf again!” Nuria cried, and Bayleef flicked her head again toward the insect. Edward looked incredulously at the barrage of leaves seemed just as strong as before. The purple mist was still around, swirling around Nincada and the leaves.

“Use Leech-” but before the command could be completed, with a cry of “Niiiin!” the insect fell and didn't move. The leaves stopped almost immediately and Edward recalled his Pokemon.

It's so under-trained! Edward cursed to himself, Why didn't we spend more time training in the forest?

Edward tutted as he threw out his only other Pokemon which could be of any use; Zubat. The bat materialised in a flash of white, then started to fly around the open sky, clearly confused as to his whereabouts.

“Who? Where?” the bat muttered to himself. It suddenly struck Edward that the last thing Zubat would remember was the underground tunnels, but decided to tell him about it later. Now, a battle needed to be won.

“Supersonic!” Edward shouted, and Zubat looked towards Bayleef, confused.

“I must attack mine own comrade?” Zubat asked, bobbing up and down agitatedly.

“Just do it,” Edward roared, “please!” Zubat nodded, which looked peculiar as half of Zubat's body was head, and screeched at Bayleef. As the bat was using the attack away from him, Edward knew he couldn't feel the full force of the harsh, agonising attack. Bayleef, on the other hand, wasn't so lucky. It shook its head back and forth in an attempt to clear her head, wincing and crying out.

“Bayleef, Razor Leaf in all directions,” Nuria shouted over the scream. “Please,” she added, then the leaves appeared again, flying randomly in all directions from Bayleef's head. They came slower and with more space between them, so Zubat easily avoided each of them.

“Leech Life... on its back!” Edward cried. He reasoned that Razor Leaf could only hit in Bayleef's direct line of sight. In theory, anyway.

Zubat swooped through the air, artfully dodging each of the sharpened tips of the foliage. Finally it landed on Bayleef's back, causing her to jump slightly and making her double the amount of leaves she shot from her head in panic. Zubat then plunged his small, sharp fangs into Bayleef's back, causing her to screech in pain.

“Shake him off!” Nuria shouted. Edward felt it was a tad unnecessary, though, as Bayleef was already rolling on its back in order to shake off the creature absorbing its life essence in her confusion. “Use Synthesis!” Nuria yelled. Edward gritted his teeth as Bayleef started go glow bright white, similar to the glow of evolution. This had turned into a battle of stamina, he knew. The winner would be whoever kept their move up the longest. He knew Zubat was in a better position as he was dealing damage and healing itself, but... Bayleef was so much more powerful and was thrashing around so Zubat got flattened against the leaf Pokemon and the floor occasionally.

Bayleef quickly became visibly exhausted, to Edward's confusion. Then he realised the problem – there was no sun to collect energy from. Nuria stomped her foot and roared:

“Tackle!”

Bayleef then ceased to glow and jumped on her back, crushing the bat underneath. But the healing the Leech Life did seemed strong enough to withstand this, as Bayleef kept struggling to alleviate the soul-absorbing sharp pain on its back, but to no use. The struggling became weaker and weaker until the dinosaur became motionless altogether. Nuria barely managed to suppress a roar, then recalled the unconscious grass-type. Free of its restraints, Zubat soared higher into the air, possibly stronger than before, filled with the blood and life energy of Bayleef. Nuria shot a glare at Edward, then threw her second Pokeball into the air. As Ralts appeared in a glow of white, the Pokeball bounced off the ground back into her hand. The stone still hovered high above Ralts' head, enveloped in blue energy. Edward raised an eyebrow. Wow. That's a lot higher than last time, he thought. He took a deep breath. He'd have to be very care-

“Confusion!” Nuria screamed. Ralts nodded her head slightly.

“Leech Life!” Edward shouted in desperation, but to no avail. Zubat froze in mid-air, a blue aura around it. It stayed motionless for a second; jaws open, wings outstretched, when suddenly it slammed seven metres down into the hard rock. Something broke in the collision, and Edward didn't think it was just rock.

“Zubat?” he called. There was no reply.

Edward cussed under his breath as he withdrew the bat. How strong is that thing? How could it take out Zubat in just one hit? At the other side of the mock arena Nuria and Ralts both punched the air in sync with each other. Nuria saw Ralts mirror her and squinted, confused for a second, before grinning again at Edward.

Edward closed his eyes in concentration. Mudkip is weaker but faster, he knew, but he still felt hollow and drained. Did Ralts get all the power just by levitating that rock? Edward wondered, observing how, if anything, it had only risen slightly higher. It was still there, after all this time. All this time. A small idea started to form in the crevices of his mind.

“Mudkip,” he yelled, throwing his Pokeball into the air, “use a continuous Water Gun!”

As the mud fish began to form, Nuria issued a command too.

“Confusion!” Nuria shouted. As Ralts started to bow her head, a high pressurised jet of water slammed into the feelings Pokemon, sending her flying. It didn't stop even when she hit the ground, the continuous stream of water pushing it across the rough rock as it spluttered helplessly. The Confusion attack hadn't taken place, just as Edward had predicted. After all, it had enough trouble focusing on the levitating rock and water jet for concentration on anything else. Edward started to grin. This is just too-

“Teleport!” Nuria screeched, and instantly the psychic-type disappeared to a few metres behind Mudkip whilst he ceased firing at the granite floor. Before Mudkip could whip around, Nuria yelled: “Confusion!” before Edward could say anything. Ralts shakily lifted her head, the rock descending slightly from above. This confirmed Edward's suspicion: the rock levitation did wear Ralts out a bit! Unfortunately, Ralts was still strong enough to execute the attack, and Mudkip was soon enveloped in a blue glow, frozen with a look of surprise on his face. Ralts lifted one of her hands in an upward throwing motion and Mudkip flew sky-high. It froze in place about ten metres up, then, with more force than gravity could have possible supplied, Mudkip crashed down like a shooting star, shattering the rock where he landed.

“Mudkip!” he shouted, shocked by the ferocity of the attack. He shouted Mudkip's name again when there was no response from the broken, bloodied figure.

“Just...” came the agonising reply, “just a sec.” Edward saw one of Mudkip's legs twitch slightly, then, slowly, the water-type began to stagger to his feet. Edward could see the pain in his face as well as the fierce determination he had to keep going. Pity griped his heart for a moment, then released its hold as he realised his hopes for Nuria's safety was on Mudkip's health. He looked over at Ralts, who despite having laboured breath as well, looked far healthier than Mudkip. Healthy enough to use Confusion again. Edward's spirits sank. He knew there was no way to save this battle. He held up Mudkip's Pokeball with a shaking hand and recalled it, gritting his teeth. At the other end of the mock-arena, Nuria grinned.

“Finally realised you can't possibly win?” she asked, triumphant, walking over towards him. Ralts sat down, breathing heavily, rubbing her head.

Edward's mind started to race. What were his other options? Running? No, she's too fast. And where would you run to on this god-forsaken island? Fight? No, you idiot, she's far stronger than you. And you can't hit her anyway, she's your friend. Edward felt himself sweating as she got closer to gloat. What other weapon do I have? Then it hit him.

“I'll tell!” he shouted as she neared to only two metres away. She froze, confused.

“Tell on me for what?” she asked, arching an eyebrow. Edward grinned, to her discomfort.

“You tell me! You, the girl who fled home, who embarked on a dangerous journey without her mother's permission! But they can't find you, can they? Why haven't they caught up yet?” Edward's train of thought sped up as Nuria's face hardened in a mask of hatred. “Where did you lead them, what red herrings did you leave? Where do they think you are, Kanto, Sinnoh? What if they got a tip-off? What if-” Nuria's fist caught him between the eyes before he saw it coming. He fell to the floor, momentarily blinded, scraping his elbows and palms on the rough floor. Suddenly he felt himself being pulled up by the scruff of his neck and heard Nuria's dark, hate-filled growl in his ears:

“Well, you can't leave my sight then, can you?”

Suddenly she threw him to the ground, Edward scuffing his hand again in darkness, confused and miserable. When the light returned, Edward saw Nuria glaring at him, far off near the other side of the island. Edward squinted. Was it him, or were Nuria's eyes all red and puffy? He also noticed that Ralts was sitting at her feet, patting Nuria's feet in comfort.

Edward exhaled, barely keeping the tears from springing up. He turned away from Nuria, facing the boulder. What now?

Edward forced the thoughts from his head and turned towards the ocean. He couldn't find comfort in the soft shhh of the ocean, or watch the gentle, calming roll of the waves. They were gone, perhaps forever. Edward narrowed his eyes at the though. With Groudon dead, would there never be sun again? If there was no Kyogre, would there be no more rain or movement in the ocean for all eternity? How could life possibly survive? he wondered. What good would this quest be if everyone would just die anyway?

He found himself thinking back to his earlier thoughts, the thoughts which had been previously interrupted by Nuria. Where were those Legendaries he was told to recruit? I need a library, he cursed. Frustrated, he pulled the bright pink Pokedex from his pocket, scrolling through the settings. Map? Where's the map section? Miraculously, through all the nonsensical apps and needless options, Edward found the words HOENN MAP printed in bold halfway down the menu, and pressed it with his forefinger. A large map showing all of Hoenn's land masses and water ways sprung up immediately. After a few minutes of tinkering, Edward found what he was looking for: the largest library was in Slateport, just a ferry-ride away. Sure, there was a smaller one in Petalburg, but why risk not getting all the information? Why waste more time?

Of course, he'd have to ask the boat-man when he could leave, and then Nuria would be onto him. I'll just have to risk-

Suddenly Edward felt fatigue wash over him and his consciousness began to waver. He felt himself slump sideways, his arm suddenly being unable to support his weight. His eyelids began to droop involuntarily, and he found himself still on the floor.

Less than a second later, he was unconscious.


Chapter 11 - Damned (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14669021&postcount=76)

overlordmewtwo
10th April 2012, 1:40 PM
Good chapter. Only one mistake to point out, though: where's Dig on Nincada? Its moveset was Scratch, Harden, Leech Life, and Sand-Attack. Whatever happened to the "altar" that Nincada had used to learn the move Dig? Did Edward decide to remove the move, or is that just a mistake on your part?

Either way, keep up the good work.

Kutie Pie
10th April 2012, 4:22 PM
Not too bad a chapter, not a lot happened, but at least we got to see a battle between Edward and Nuria. (Rather short, but I that does make sense since he is under-leveled.) The only mistake I saw was this (since overlordmewtwo pointed it out):


to fend her off for him if she [I[really[/I] wanted to come.

Your fingers must've slipped there.

I'm also curious about the rock Ralts has. I think it's a hold item that boosts Psychics or something, I'm just guessing here. Zubat's little confusion made me giggle a little bit x3. Hope he didn't break anything too vital. And we're getting a little bit more information on Nuria, but it wasn't enough to explain her actions. We may get this in a few chapters, probably.

You're doing fine, Scaldaver, keep it up.

Scaldaver
10th April 2012, 6:30 PM
Thanks for the corrections, Overlordmewtwo and Kutie Pie. Originally I was reading Nincada'a moveset off Bulbapedia, and, surprise surprise, Dig isn't there at lower levels (somehow). And, yeah, I've started to do the whole Italics/Bold/Underlined thing in the [] in my work so it is easy to paste it onto the website so it carries over. I guess I messed it up a bit, though :)

Thanks for all the feedback, and I'll try and get the next chapter up ASAP!

Kutie Pie
10th April 2012, 9:08 PM
Thanks for the corrections, Overlordmewtwo and Kutie Pie. Originally I was reading Nincada'a moveset off Bulbapedia, and, surprise surprise, Dig isn't there at lower levels (somehow). And, yeah, I've started to do the whole Italics/Bold/Underlined thing in the [] in my work so it is easy to paste it onto the website so it carries over. I guess I messed it up a bit, though :)

Thanks for all the feedback, and I'll try and get the next chapter up ASAP!

Do you use the brackets while writing, or when you're ready to post it up? I'm sure it's more of a personal preference, but I'm sure quite a lot of us do this where we write it out, and before we post it up, go through the chapter and insert the brackets. I don't save it as a copy, though, since it doesn't take me that long most of the time to put in the brackets. But every writer is different, what you may be doing isn't wrong at all.

Don't you start rushing over your chapters now, you hear?

Dragonfree
11th April 2012, 5:15 AM
Sorry I didn't get around to betaing again; I've been very busy.

One mistake that jumped out at me:


“I know what your going to say,” she began
Since it's short for "you are", that should be "you're", not "your".

It's always nice to see your general ambitiousness with character development; your characters are reacting to things emotionally and being people instead of just accepting whatever happens to them, and Edward trying to push Nuria away to not get her involved, as well as Nuria's reaction showing how much she actually cares about him, were really fun to see. I did feel Edward's emotional breakdown now compared to how relatively calm he was with the whole thing in the previous chapter was a bit jarring, though. True, people accept things more easily in a dream, but that's more on the rational level than the emotional; you have Edward asking all sorts of critical questions about the plan, implying his critical thinking is fine, while the emotional punch doesn't seem to hit him at all until afterwards, and that seems kind of backwards.

Nice battle, too - you kept up the interest well with Edward's thought process and strategizing and the Pokémon were doing more specific things than just using move X or Y, which made the whole thing a lot more dynamic.

It would have been fun to see Nuria's conversation with Bayleef, but I'm assuming how they made up will be expanded on later.

Scaldaver
12th April 2012, 11:39 PM
Thanks everyone for the feedback, I find it so useful considering I want to be an author. I'm afraid that, due to a holiday, GCSE revision, Astronomy work and my Duke of Edinburgh Award, the next chapter won't be up for a long while (I'll specify later).

To keep us all entertained 'til then, I shall pose a question. What does Nuria and Edward look like to each of you? It'd be interesting for me to find out.

TTFN!

cooloolcool
13th April 2012, 12:34 AM
Thanks everyone for the feedback, I find it so useful considering I want to be an author. I'm afraid that, due to a holiday, GCSE revision, Astronomy work and my Duke of Edinburgh Award, the next chapter won't be up for a long while.

To keep us all entertained 'til then, I shall pose a question. What does Nuria and Edward look like to each of you? It'd be interesting for me to find out.

TTFN!

To me, they look like some people that would normally never talk to each other. That also means that they'd make the perfect couple! Can't wait for more story!

Scaldaver
14th April 2012, 12:24 PM
To me, they look like some people that would normally never talk to each other. That also means that they'd make the perfect couple! Can't wait for more story!

Thanks for the positive input, but what I meant was what do they physically look like to you. I added no description so you can build them up as you want, and I thought it would be interesting to find out what impression some people get of them.

cooloolcool
14th April 2012, 3:03 PM
Thanks for the positive input, but what I meant was what do they physically look like to you. I added no description so you can build them up as you want, and I thought it would be interesting to find out what impression some people get of them.

Oh. Then I think of Edward as a not-super-skinny-but-thin sort of guy. Not super tall either, but not a dwarf.

Nuria, well... umm... I just don't know how to describe that.

Dragonfree
15th April 2012, 1:08 AM
In my head, Edward looks like the male player character from HG/SS. Nuria looks like the female player character from Black and White. Most trainer fic characters end up looking like one of the playable characters from the games in my head, even if there is description.

The Great Butler
22nd April 2012, 8:57 AM
Only a brief review this time, I've begun feeling not well again.

This chapter did a good job showing us the emotional toll the sheer magnitude of the mission is taking on Edward, and how it's affecting his behavior. When you shifted into the battle scene, you remained consistent.

Scaldaver
24th April 2012, 5:40 PM
Well, because of the Astronomy, Biology, Chemistry, Spanish, French and Duke of Endingburgh, the next time a chapter will be up will be some time at the beggining of the summer holidays. I'm so sorry it will take so long, and will do some writing in my free time, but I'm afraid I have to ask you all to be extremely patient until then.

Thanks for understanding, and TTFN.

Scaldaver
7th June 2012, 9:40 AM
Well, its been a long time but I've started writing again. Ok, that's not the only reason I'm posting this. It's also that I can't find this fanfic in the forums and when I searched it nothing came up.

I'm hoping the next chapter to have some more emotional content, although until the proofreading comes back I won't know how effective that is.

Scaldaver
9th June 2012, 11:37 PM
FINALLY! New chapter! Hopefully this gives things a little more emotional depth and whatnot, so please feel free to comment. As always, enjoy (and leave a comment - I really want to do this when I'm older[write, that is])

Chapter Eleven
Damned

The chase, the childish game of cat and mouse, took them higher and higher above Earth's surface. The bright blue sky became darker and darker until little pin-pricks of light started to appear, scattered in the sky. It felt welcome in the infinite expanse of darkness, the one true place it had spent most of its existence. The murderer looked down upon the beautiful, dying world with sad eyes. Another world, another few millennia of making a home, becoming legend. Then the elimination process.

Yet it was vital. To achieve its goal, all things must be eradicated.

The murderer looked up and saw the sky lord had disappeared from sight. It poured on the speed for a few moments, then saw the serpent. It had slowed down a great deal, which the murderer took to interpret as mortal fatigue. The serpent descended into a great cloud, shrouding it entirely.

Enough games, it thought, and shot as though fired by a cannon towards the cloud.

***

Edward opened his eyes and gasped. The world had turned black in a haze of thunderclouds, only occasionally illuminated by a cackling stream of yellow lightning.

“Welcome,” came Latias' voice, high and ominous. Edward looked around. Where is she?

“Everywhere,” Latias' voice boomed like thunder, quite matter-of-factly. “Your Pokemon transportation devices are quite remarkable. All this energy used to store and keep Pokemon in stasis.”

“What do you want?” Edward asked irritably. “Did you knock me out?”

“Yes,” said Latias, “because you had a few questions on your mind, and my proximity to you allows me to draw you into this area occasionally.”

Edward looked around. “So we're really inside a Pokeball?” After a few seconds of focus he noticed how the 'thunder' was periodic: how it seemed like clockwork that each crackle would take place.

“Yes, but that is not important. I have answers to your questions. First of all: do not fear for the safety of your Pokemon. Ancients are very rarely vengeful on fellow Pokemon who are merely following orders. Second: yes, you must aim to recruit all living Ancients. However, because of the small time-scale we have to try and save the world, I recommend focusing on Johto, Kanto, Sinnoh and Hoenn Ancients, simply as they are the closest. My brother reported to me the other day that very few of the Ancients are still in their... living spaces: many have gone into hiding. Only the Regis and the Lake Guardians are at the places they should be. By the way,” Latias' voice perked up considerably, “my brother is returning to me now – he should be here in a few hours.”

“Great,” Edward moaned. Do I really need another doom-saying dragon on my hands?

“And,” Latias continued, probably ignoring Edward's thoughts, “it might be a good idea to battle your... what are they called? Gym Leaders? Yes, challenge them so you can work on your strategies more.”

“Wait,” Edward said, holding up his hands in protest. “You said you made this plan because I am weak, so I can help my weak Pokemon take down – sorry, weaken but not take down - the Legendaries with skill to avoid suspicion from an unknown mass-murderer. But now you want me to train them? If I get too strong won't the killer be suspicious?”

Latias snorted a small laugh. “First of all, I only recommend you train them to familiarise yourself with your companions. Secondly, how strong do you think you can raise your Pokemon until the world is destroyed? There is no way you will become too distinguished in the time our plan will succeed or fail, so train to your heart's content.”

Yeah, but how am I supposed to train in order to fight the Gym Leader? The place is a wasteland, Edward wondered.

“Just look at the mountain,” Latias said simply, and continued before Edward could intervene. “By the way, you shall need all the help you can get. Your mate could help.”

Edward's mouth dropped open in disbelief. Did she say...Mate? But surely she didn't mean...Mate!?

“Look,” he half shouted at the nothingness around him, feeling his face redden, “first of all, Nuria is just my friend. Secondly, I will not endanger anyone like that. You chose me, and me only – no-one else deserves this.”

At that moment Edward could almost sense Latias giving him an apologetic smile.

“I'm afraid it is inevitable that your friend will become embroiled in this quest with you. You are too close to each other. Your companion refuses to leave you, does she not?”

“But, that's...that's...” Edward struggled for the right words.

“Unfair? Is it unfair that countless other civilisations have crumbled because the killer has met no resistance? It is unfair that Groudon and Kyogre died? No, the universe is mostly unfair and sacrifices must be made.”

“Wait, sacrifices?”

Edward felt the air in the Pokeball tighten for a split second. Latias was probably giving herself a mental slap around the face.

“Forget I said that.” Forget what? Edward wondered as Latias' command took hold. ”With great luck, the most you will probably sacrifice is your time in searching for the Ancients. Now, you must train-”

“But what's the point?” Edward roared suddenly, unexpectedly viciously as he suddenly recalled his bleak, apocalyptic train of thought from before he was knocked out. “The world's screwed as it is. There's no sunlight, no current. Without strong sunlight, plants will die. And how many ecosystems have been screwed over in the ocean? The world's damned if I do, damned if I don't. So what's the POINT?”

In the silence of the Pokeball that followed Edward could only hear his ragged, enraged breathing. He wanted to pummel something, to let loose this anger running rampant within him. He just stood there, fists clenched, every muscle in his body feeling as though they were alive with electricity. The unfairness, the feeling of of uselessness...

No sooner had the rage appeared than it imploded and Edward felt his shoulders rock with violent sobs. He collapsed onto his knees, curling up into a ball.

Damned if I do, damned if I don't. He knew he'd summed it up all to well. Except now he realised the true meaning of those words. I'm damned if I do, damned if I don't. It was the sudden rush of hopelessness, the fact he knew his death was inevitable that brought him to his knees. What sort of selfish coward am I? he demanded of himself as another cry left his lips. What sort of person, burdened with the fate of billions, could possibly be so...so... He let the maddening thought die.

It felt like hours later that Edward's eyes refused to give up more tears. He lay there, in the expanse of darkness, watching the streaks of lightning, his mind devoid of all thought.

“Do you know what I am?” Latias' voice rung through the world. There was no anger, no disgust at his break down. Only sympathy. “In my life, I have been known by so many names I have forgot who I am myself. My brother is my only true companion. I have made countless mortal friends, all of whom have died, most of whom are gone from my memory forever. Imagine only existing, having to face another day, another year, another century knowing all you will do is... exist. To only become a legend, a sought after prize, a deity or a demon. I cannot remember my true name, only the name given to me by the mortals. I cannot remember my origin, my life before wandering the globe. I know nothing about myself.”

Edward turned onto his back, looking up at the darkened sky. Somehow he appreciated how hollow, how dark it was in there. Was this Latias' mind, her memories?

“I have seen humankind evolve – I know your species better than you know it yourself. When your kind has met any adversity you have survived against every odd and became dominant in a world filled with beasts who breathe fire, who summon thunder from the sky and can break mountains. Mankind shall survive if we give them the chance. Their precious technology will develop, they will become gods to survive, saving their world in the process. All we have to do is prevent the scale tipping to a point where even your people cannot recover.”

Edward stared, wide-eyed, at the expanse above him. Him palms started to sweat. His mind started to race. Yes, the world can be salvaged, he thought slowly as he recalled technological marvels such as genetically modified crops and industrial-scale greenhouses. We could make our own food, he thought, the ghost of a smile beginning to play on his lips. Who needs sunlight? And surely people could feed the Pokemon in the oceans? And couldn't feeding patterns simply change? Yes, things could get better...

Then the pessimism from only minutes later washed over him again. The cause was still hopeless. What could he possibly do to fight something that had wiped out countless civilisations? And I can still die...

Soon Latias' voice once again filled his ears.

“Now imagine you lived my existence, existing only to exist some more with no other purpose. Your fear of your death is nothing compared to the horror screaming in my head at every moment. I have seen the countless horrors of death, and have only found solace in the fact that I will never have to experience it. Now I know that, unless I am extremely lucky, I will die, just like any other mortal.

“Which is why I know you will fight. I know you will fight if your fear is even a fraction of mine If you don't fight now, you and everything you hold dear will die. Your mother and father will die. Nuria will die. You will die. You were wrong when you said you are damned if you do. If you do choose to undertake this challenge, you will have a chance to live.”

Edward took in the words slowly, as though the air was custard and the words hit him at a syllable per minute. Each person mentioned felt like a wooden stake in his heart. How can I let so many people die? But his spirit still felt empty, fear and anger raging inside of him. What can I possibly do? Then the final part of what Latias had said finally hit him.

A chance to live. Suddenly every nerve in his body tightened around that small phrase. A chance...a small chance to live. He felt a shift deep within him, a sudden change in principle. No more was he living for the joys of life. Now he felt his life gravitating to a single thought. Survival.

He wouldn't do this for Nuria. Not for his parents. Not even for the billions of people and Pokemon alive. The only thing which compelled him to such a suicidal task was the faintest chance of personal survival.

“Now hurry,” Latias whispered in encouragement, not at all disgusted by his self-centred motives “train until my brother arrives, then we will set off.”

Before Edward could argue the world started to dissolve, and less than a second later he felt himself jerk awake on the cold, rock floor, the the brightness of the clouds indicating nothing about the time. He lay there for several seconds, just wondering how to react.

Who am I now? he wondered as he lay in silence. A hero? No, heroes are selfless. I'm just an idiot desperate for self-preservation that only the thought of his death motivates him to do good in the world.

Wanting to stop thinking about this topic, his mind then flitted back to his previous thoughts of the Legendary Pokemon. Except now he didn't feel so lost. He was so much less confused, so much surer of his goal.

The good news, he reasoned, was that he at least knew where to start looking. The Regis, those mineral monsters... what are they again? Edward sat up and held his face in his hand as he focused on those countless stories he'd been told as a child. About Mew, the origin, Arceus, the beginning, all bible stories he'd thought nothing about until the tales of Groudon and Kyogre rung true. The Regis, the Regis...

He slapped the floor in disgust at his poor memory, grazing his hand slightly. The name sounded so familiar, but, then again, whatever these creatures were, they probably really dull or else there'd be an awesome, memorable tale to go with them. Fine, fine, I'll just do a tad more research in Slateport.

Then he remembered what Latias had said. About training and about finding tactics and skills to fight and impress gods.

But where on this god-forsaken island am I supposed to train? He didn't feel up to human interaction, yet there was no sign of wild Pokemon. Hang on, what was that thing that Latias had said?

In the second he remembered he snapped his head to the side and scrutinised the pile of rocks, pebbles and boulders that made up the mountain in the middle of the island.

Just look at the mountain, Latias had said. But what am I supposed to be looking at? Edward wondered as his eyes scanned the rocks. But something felt strange. Similar to his feeling of deep importance prior to his rediscovery of Latias, but far less pressing. Something small on the tip of his mind, just out of reach.

Suddenly, before Edward's eyes the boulders transformed. No more did he see them as mere rocks. He jumped up to his feet, Pokeballs in hand, and ran over to the regeneration machine over by the gym battle.

***

“Water Gun!” Edward shouted at Mudkip. The mud fish leapt up and fired a beam of pressurised water at yet another Geodude, causing it to roar in agony. The jet continuously pelted the rock monster, not giving it any breathing room. When it slumped to the floor Edward grinned and turned toward the mountainside.

“Can you see any more Geodude?” Edward asked his companions. The Mudkip wheezed and shook his head, and Nincada was too exhausted to even do that. “Doesn't matter.” Edward shrugged. “You've both had enough training for the day.” And with that he recalled his two Pokemon into their Pokeballs. In another fluid motion he took his Pokedex from his pocket as well. The digital time on the front screen read '3:49'. Edward blinked. Kyogre's death, drowning, discovering Latias, battling Nuria, fighting all those Geodudes... it seemed all too much for only one day. How long was he out for each of those encounters with Latias? Did they take any time at all, or... Behind him he heard slow, satirical clapping, disrupting his thoughts.

“Bravo, Eddy,” Nuria said drily, perched atop a small boulder, Pokeball in hand. “How many was that? Ten? Twenty?” she asked. “Mudkip should be proud. After all, it did manage to spray water on a bunch of hydrophobic rocks.”

“At least I did something. What have you been doing for the past couple of hours?” Edward spat. Nuria raised an eyebrow.

“Why all the hate, Eddy? Is wanting to look after you really such a bad thing for me to do?”

“Shut up,” Edward growled darkly. “You don't want to look after me, you just want someone to boss around.”

Nuria sighed, rolling her eyes. “Well, if you really want to know, I caught another Pokemon.” The statement took Edward by surprise. Even though he'd intended to distance himself from Nuria, he still felt left out that he hadn't seen her catch her third Pokemon. “Don't worry though,” she continued, dropping from the small boulder and expertly landing on her feet, “it wasn't anything exciting. I just happened to see a Shellder flailing around in a rock pool, flicking its tongue in all directions, and I thought, 'hey, why not? When it evolves, a water and ice type could come in handy in the future,' so, after asking it if it minded being caught, I simply tapped a Pokeball against its shell and here I am now. So,” she went on, glancing up at his face, “when are you going to battle the Gym Leader?”

“What's it to you?” Edward sneered, turning his back on his ex-friend. He wasn't only doing this to distance himself from her. He also knew that if there was even a slight chance of avoiding her, he'd have to make sure Nuria had no idea what he was up to. But then again, he thought, how can I avoid her on such a small island?

Suddenly Edward felt someone close behind him, and whirled around to see the boat-man making his way towards the gym battle field. His walking was fast paced, and when he arrived he wasted no time in shouting: “The boat leaves for Slateport at seven thirty. After that you'll have to wait two days before I'm back here to move you off to Slateport.” And with that he simply turned and made his way back to the boat.

Edward's heart pounded. Two days. He couldn't wait that long... could he? He also thought back to what Latias had said about her brother coming soon. The dragon would probably seek him out, but how could they communicate if there were so many other people on such a small island? He knew he'd have to leave for Slateport today. Which meant facing the Gym Leader soon.

Not even addressing Nuria, Edward turned toward the battlefield and made his way to the end of the long queue of trainers waiting for their turn to face the Gym Leader.



Next - Chapter 12 - Gym Battle Two (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14737065&postcount=86)

Kutie Pie
10th June 2012, 12:30 AM
I'd say "welcome back", but it's only been two months, which is an average amount of time for updates, I suppose. If it was September, I'd go, "Yay!" But either way, you found the ability to write again, so that's what matters ^_^.

All right, I found a few grammatical mistakes, but I'm too lazy not gonna bother looking back for them, or else I'm gonna forget what to say. They're not glaringly obvious, but a skim or two will be able to catch them for editing.

So, Edward is now going to have to fight with himself for why he's doing what he's chosen to do. He has to figure out if it's out of selfishness, or for all of the people. Kinda has this anti-hero vibe to it. I'm not sure if I mentioned it before, but I don't think he had that anti-hero vibe prior to this chapter. So that'll be interesting to see. Latias seems to hold some secrets of her own, even if she was willing to open herself up to him about her legendary status. That's pretty painful to forget yourself. It's a nice interpretation of why being immortal sucks.

I still have my own guesses for who the murderer is, but I could be entirely wrong. Either way, if Rayquaza dies, things are going to go downhill very quickly.

Keep it up, Scaldaver ^^.

ChloboShoka
10th June 2012, 6:47 PM
I've been meaning to read this one for a while, and since I saw it on the review game, I thought it was the perfect timing. I enjoyed the interactions between Latias and Edward. It shows a cool side to Edward and highlights something for the future. I also like how it's been written and the techniques used here. The italics in particular stood out for me because the italics made me focus on to the story more.

I also thought you ended chapter eleven very well. It showed tension and potential panic. I think it would make readers, including myself looking forward to the next chapter. I really thought the April's Fool chapter was a nice touch. It was random, but brilliant at the same time. I think it made reading the real chapter 10 more better. It made me feel the emotion more because the April Fool's chapter gave the tension a bit of a break and it returned in style on chapter 10.

Scaldaver
11th June 2012, 8:56 PM
Thanks for the comments, Kutie Pie and C.Gholy!


I'd say "welcome back", but it's only been two months, which is an average amount of time for updates, I suppose. If it was September, I'd go, "Yay!" But either way, you found the ability to write again, so that's what matters ^_^.

Glad to be greeted so...enthusiastically!


So that'll be interesting to see. Latias seems to hold some secrets of her own, even if she was willing to open herself up to him about her legendary status. QUOTE]

I didn't mean for that to be any big secret: I just thought Latias would say that to try to reassure Edward ('So you thing you have problems?' kind of thing, as well as linking onto what she says later). I suppose that really doesn't matter, though :)

[QUOTE]Kinda has this anti-hero vibe to it. I'm not sure if I mentioned it before, but I don't think he had that anti-hero vibe prior to this chapter. So that'll be interesting to see.

I suppose it may seem a bit random I decided to add that, but it does seem to me like a normal human response - I suppose very few people are so selfless as to risk their life for other people, and I didn't want Edward to come off as Gary-Stuish (or whoever that guy is). I'm glad it'll be fun to see - I intend to continue with it!


I still have my own guesses for who the murderer is, but I could be entirely wrong. Either way, if Rayquaza dies, things are going to go downhill very quickly.

{Laughs sinisterly, strokes cat, turns revolving chair}

I can't wait to hear, later on, who people think the murderer is. NOTICE TO ALL, DON'T SAY WHO YOU THINK IT IS OR I MAY ACTUALLY BE PRESSURED TO DIS/PROVING THAT IMMEDIATELY!!!

Keep it up, Scaldaver ^^.

Will do!


C.Gholy, would you like to be on the PM list?

Oh, and I'd also like to just say that I've swallowed some of my pride and made a few tweaks to the first few chapters that Dragonfree recommended. Nothing major, just a bit of wording is all.

Dragonfree
12th June 2012, 12:00 AM
You keep posting your chapters before I get the chance to finish the beta. :( Not that there were really any outstanding mistakes in the chapter that I remember, but. I'll give you a brief review instead.


It poured on the speed for a few moments, then saw the serpent.
Poured on the speed? Seems oddly worded; pouring doesn't make me think of speed, and it generally gives the impression speed is just a substance you can pour, rather than involving actual exertion.


After a few seconds he noticed how the 'thunder' was very well timed, how it seemed like clockwork that each cackle would take place.
I like this detail, though I think you could have worded it better; the current way feels kind of awkward and unpolished. (Also, I think you wanted 'crackle' rather than 'cackle'.)

Edward's mood swings may be a little extreme, but it is understandable he'd be feeling pretty extreme emotions - it's just the several 180s his emotional state does in the chapter that seem off. Also, I find this line unrealistically melodramatic:


Who am I now? he wondered as he lay in silence. A hero? No, heroes are selfless. I'm only a fool so desperate for self-preservation that only the thought of his death motivates him to do good in the world.
The whole "I'm only a fool" thing really doesn't sound like something a teenager would think to himself. He can express pretty much the same sentiment in terms more appropriate to his age.

I do like the hints at Latias's manipulativeness, as well as the general development of her character, and even if you may be going overboard on occasion, I still like that you're being ambitious about putting your characters through hardships and having them react in a human way. Keep going.

Scaldaver
12th June 2012, 8:23 PM
Thanks for the reply, Dragonfree. Don't interpret my quick posting as impatience, it's just that I assume that you can't reply because of your exams and whatnot, and I don't want you to feel like you're under any pressure to proofread. But, now I know you were actually in the process of Beta-reading, I'll wait for you to reply before I post.

Yeah, when I first went through it I thought the thunder sentence was a little off, but for some reason didn't change it. The same basically for the whole 'I'm a fool' thing, although when I changes it I thought I cut out unecessary melodrama.


I do like the hints at Latias's manipulativeness

I actually hadn't intended for Latias to come off as manipulative, although I do like the idea. Hmmm...


Keep going.

Sure thing!

Arbok4Ever
12th June 2012, 8:37 PM
I really like this fanfic. A creature that kills Legendaries... cool!
Can I be on the PM list?

(I think the killer is Deoxys, but it could be completely something else.)

Scaldaver
12th June 2012, 9:11 PM
I really like this fanfic. A creature that kills Legendaries... cool!
Can I be on the PM list?

(I think the killer is Deoxys, but it could be completely something else.)

Yeah, sure you can. And just a reminder to everyone else:

DO NOT SAY YOU THINK YOU KNOW WHO THE KILLER IS! IT MAY CAUSE ME TO RUSH MY PLANS IN ORDER TO PROVE OR DISPROVE WHAT YOU SAY!

Luckily, though, I have something planned for the next chapter, so this idea doesn't affect me much.

The Great Butler
17th June 2012, 9:20 AM
The chase, the childish game of cat and mouse, took them higher and higher above Earth's surface. The bright blue sky became darker and darker until little pin-pricks of light started to appear, scattered in the sky. It felt welcome in the infinite expanse of darkness, the one true place it had spent most of its existence. The murderer looked down upon the beautiful, dying world with sad eyes. Another world, another few millennia of making a home, becoming legend. Then the elimination process.

Yet it was vital. To achieve its goal, all things must be eradicated.

The murderer looked up and saw the sky lord had disappeared from sight. It poured on the speed for a few moments, then saw the serpent. It had slowed down a great deal, which the murderer took to interpret as mortal fatigue. The serpent descended into a great cloud, shrouding it entirely.

[/I]Enough games, it thought, and shot as though fired by a cannon towards the cloud.

Very nicely written scene with beautiful description. The tension here is well appreciated, too.


Edward opened his eyes and gasped. The world had turned black in a haze of thunderclouds, only occasionally illuminated by a cackling stream of yellow lightning.

That should be "crackling stream."


“Welcome,” came Latias' voice, high and ominous. Edward looked around. Where is she?

“Everywhere,” Latias' voice boomed like thunder, quite matter-of-factly. “Your Pokemon transportation devices are quite remarkable. All this energy used to store and keep Pokemon in stasis.”

The world inside a Poké Ball, huh? Interesting concept you've got of its appearance.


“What do you want?” Edward asked irritably. “Did you knock me out?”

“Yes,” said Latias, “because you had a few questions on your mind, and my proximity to you allows me to draw you into this area occasionally.”

Edward looked around. “So we're really inside a Pokeball?” After a few seconds of focus he noticed how the 'thunder' was periodic: how it seemed like clockwork that each crackle would take place.

“Yes, but that is not important. I have answers to your questions. First of all: do not fear for the safety of your Pokemon. Ancients are very rarely vengeful on fellow Pokemon who are merely following orders. Second: yes, you must aim to recruit all living Ancients. However, because of the small time-scale we have to try and save the world, I recommend focusing on Johto, Kanto, Sinnoh and Hoenn Ancients, simply as they are the closest. My brother reported to me the other day that very few of the Ancients are still in their... living spaces: many have gone into hiding. Only the Regis and the Lake Guardians are at the places they should be. By the way,” Latias' voice perked up considerably, “my brother is returning to me now – he should be here in a few hours.”

Still doesn't sound much like a time-saving endeavor, now does it? XD;


“Great,” Edward moaned. Do I really need another doom-saying dragon on my hands?

“And,” Latias continued, probably ignoring Edward's thoughts, “it might be a good idea to battle your... what are they called? Gym Leaders? Yes, challenge them so you can work on your strategies more.”

“Wait,” Edward said, holding up his hands in protest. “You said you made this plan because I am weak, so I can help my weak Pokemon take down – sorry, weaken but not take down - the Legendaries with skill to avoid suspicion from an unknown mass-murderer. But now you want me to train them? If I get too strong won't the killer be suspicious?”[

Latias snorted a small laugh. “First of all, I only recommend you train them to familiarise yourself with your companions. Secondly, how strong do you think you can raise your Pokemon until the world is destroyed? There is no way you will become too distinguished in the time our plan will succeed or fail, so train to your heart's content.”

Yeah, but how am I supposed to train in order to fight the Gym Leader? The place is a wasteland, Edward wondered.

This is an interesting way to put a spin on the standard Gym quest. I like it.


“Just look at the mountain,” Latias said simply, and continued before Edward could intervene. “By the way, you shall need all the help you can get. Your mate could help.”

Edward's mouth dropped open in disbelief. Did she say...Mate? But surely she didn't mean...Mate!?

“Look,” he half shouted at the nothingness around him, feeling his face redden, “first of all, Nuria is just my friend. Secondly, I will not endanger anyone like that. You chose me, and me only – no-one else deserves this.”

Okay, I had to laugh at Latias teasing Edward. That was pretty funny.

It was pretty clear that Nuria would be involved, though. Not only is there the typical "two heads are better than one" philosophy, there's the fact that she seems to be one of the few things keeping Edward completely sane.


At that moment Edward could almost sense Latias giving him an apologetic smile.

“I'm afraid it is inevitable that your friend will become embroiled in this quest with you. You are too close to each other. Your companion refuses to leave you, does she not?”

“But, that's...that's...” Edward struggled for the right words.

“Unfair? Is it unfair that countless other civilisations have crumbled because the killer has met no resistance? It is unfair that Groudon and Kyogre died? No, the universe is mostly unfair and sacrifices must be made.”

“Wait, sacrifices?”

Well that can't be good. Latias's callous speech was already giving me a bit of pause (despite being very true) but that last bit really caught me.


Edward felt the air in the Pokeball tighten for a split second. Latias was probably giving herself a mental slap around the face.

“Forget I said that.” Forget what? Edward wondered as Latias' command took hold. ”With great luck, the most you will probably sacrifice is your time in searching for the Ancients. Now, you must train-”

I'm sure "great luck" is an understatement.


“But what's the point?” Edward roared suddenly, unexpectedly viciously as he suddenly recalled his bleak, apocalyptic train of thought from before he was knocked out. “The world's screwed as it is. There's no sunlight, no current. Without strong sunlight, plants will die. And how many ecosystems have been screwed over in the ocean? The world's damned if I do, damned if I don't. So what's the POINT?”

In the silence of the Pokeball that followed Edward could only hear his ragged, enraged breathing. He wanted to pummel something, to let loose this anger running rampant within him. He just stood there, fists clenched, every muscle in his body feeling as though they were alive with electricity. The unfairness, the feeling of of uselessness...

No sooner had the rage appeared than it imploded and Edward felt his shoulders rock with violent sobs. He collapsed onto his knees, curling up into a ball.

Damned if I do, damned if I don't. He knew he'd summed it up all to well. Except now he realised the true meaning of those words. I'm damned if I do, damned if I don't. It was the sudden rush of hopelessness, the fact he knew his death was inevitable that brought him to his knees. What sort of selfish coward am I? he demanded of himself as another cry left his lips. What sort of person, burdened with the fate of billions, could possibly be so...so... He let the maddening thought die.

It felt like hours later that Edward's eyes refused to give up more tears. He lay there, in the expanse of darkness, watching the streaks of lightning, his mind devoid of all thought.

I'm certainly going to be interested in seeing how Edward develops as his quest gets underway. Right now it feels like his development might be caught in a little bit of a rut, but I'm sure that'll be fixed once he gets going, so I'm not worried.


“Do you know what I am?” Latias' voice rung through the world. There was no anger, no disgust at his break down. Only sympathy. “In my life, I have been known by so many names I have forgot who I am myself. My brother is my only true companion. I have made countless mortal friends, all of whom have died, most of whom are gone from my memory forever. Imagine only existing, having to face another day, another year, another century knowing all you will do is... exist. To only become a legend, a sought after prize, a deity or a demon. I cannot remember my true name, only the name given to me by the mortals. I cannot remember my origin, my life before wandering the globe. I know nothing about myself.”

It's good that you're giving Latias some more development, which is important. These are good details, too, and pretty sad at that.


Edward turned onto his back, looking up at the darkened sky. Somehow he appreciated how hollow, how dark it was in there. Was this Latias' mind, her memories?

“I have seen humankind evolve – I know your species better than you know it yourself. When your kind has met any adversity you have survived against every odd and became dominant in a world filled with beasts who breathe fire, who summon thunder from the sky and can break mountains. Mankind shall survive if we give them the chance. Their precious technology will develop, they will become gods to survive, saving their world in the process. All we have to do is prevent the scale tipping to a point where even your people cannot recover.”

Edward stared, wide-eyed, at the expanse above him. Him palms started to sweat. His mind started to race. Yes, the world can be salvaged, he thought slowly as he recalled technological marvels such as genetically modified crops and industrial-scale greenhouses. We could make our own food, he thought, the ghost of a smile beginning to play on his lips. Who needs sunlight? And surely people could feed the Pokemon in the oceans? And couldn't feeding patterns simply change? Yes, things could get better...

Then the pessimism from only minutes later washed over him again. The cause was still hopeless. What could he possibly do to fight something that had wiped out countless civilisations? And I can still die...

Wow, that passage... that was pretty intense. I had to read it several times, but it was sure worth it. This part was emotionally challenging, that's how I'd put it.


Soon Latias' voice once again filled his ears.

“Now imagine you lived my existence, existing only to exist some more with no other purpose. Your fear of your death is nothing compared to the horror screaming in my head at every moment. I have seen the countless horrors of death, and have only found solace in the fact that I will never have to experience it. Now I know that, unless I am extremely lucky, I will die, just like any other mortal.

“Which is why I know you will fight. I know you will fight if your fear is even a fraction of mine If you don't fight now, you and everything you hold dear will die. Your mother and father will die. Nuria will die. You will die. You were wrong when you said you are damned if you do. If you do choose to undertake this challenge, you will have a chance to live.”

Latias is sure good at making a good case for her views, huh?


Edward took in the words slowly, as though the air was custard and the words hit him at a syllable per minute. Each person mentioned felt like a wooden stake in his heart. How can I let so many people die? But his spirit still felt empty, fear and anger raging inside of him. What can I possibly do? Then the final part of what Latias had said finally hit him.

A chance to live. Suddenly every nerve in his body tightened around that small phrase. A chance...a small chance to live. He felt a shift deep within him, a sudden change in principle. No more was he living for the joys of life. Now he felt his life gravitating to a single thought. Survival.

He wouldn't do this for Nuria. Not for his parents. Not even for the billions of people and Pokemon alive. The only thing which compelled him to such a suicidal task was the faintest chance of personal survival.

I'm liking how Edward is starting to change already. I can really get a good feel for it.


“Now hurry,” Latias whispered in encouragement, not at all disgusted by his self-centred motives “train until my brother arrives, then we will set off.”

Before Edward could argue the world started to dissolve, and less than a second later he felt himself jerk awake on the cold, rock floor, the the brightness of the clouds indicating nothing about the time. He lay there for several seconds, just wondering how to react.

Who am I now? he wondered as he lay in silence. A hero? No, heroes are selfless. I'm just an idiot desperate for self-preservation that only the thought of his death motivates him to do good in the world.

Wanting to stop thinking about this topic, his mind then flitted back to his previous thoughts of the Legendary Pokemon. Except now he didn't feel so lost. He was so much less confused, so much surer of his goal.

The good news, he reasoned, was that he at least knew where to start looking. The Regis, those mineral monsters... what are they again? Edward sat up and held his face in his hand as he focused on those countless stories he'd been told as a child. About Mew, the origin, Arceus, the beginning, all bible stories he'd thought nothing about until the tales of Groudon and Kyogre rung true. The Regis, the Regis...

He slapped the floor in disgust at his poor memory, grazing his hand slightly. The name sounded so familiar, but, then again, whatever these creatures were, they probably really dull or else there'd be an awesome, memorable tale to go with them. Fine, fine, I'll just do a tad more research in Slateport.

That research ought to help. Good thinking.


Then he remembered what Latias had said. About training and about finding tactics and skills to fight and impress gods.

But where on this god-forsaken island am I supposed to train? He didn't feel up to human interaction, yet there was no sign of wild Pokemon. Hang on, what was that thing that Latias had said?

In the second he remembered he snapped his head to the side and scrutinised the pile of rocks, pebbles and boulders that made up the mountain in the middle of the island.

Just look at the mountain, Latias had said. But what am I supposed to be looking at? Edward wondered as his eyes scanned the rocks. But something felt strange. Similar to his feeling of deep importance prior to his rediscovery of Latias, but far less pressing. Something small on the tip of his mind, just out of reach.

Suddenly, before Edward's eyes the boulders transformed. No more did he see them as mere rocks. He jumped up to his feet, Pokeballs in hand, and ran over to the regeneration machine over by the gym battle.

***

“Water Gun!” Edward shouted at Mudkip. The mud fish leapt up and fired a beam of pressurised water at yet another Geodude, causing it to roar in agony. The jet continuously pelted the rock monster, not giving it any breathing room. When it slumped to the floor Edward grinned and turned toward the mountainside.

Great thinking, Edward!

He's already starting to change into a stronger and more resolute person who thinks on his feet. You're doing very well at it.


“Can you see any more Geodude?” Edward asked his companions. The Mudkip wheezed and shook his head, and Nincada was too exhausted to even do that. “Doesn't matter.” Edward shrugged. “You've both had enough training for the day.” And with that he recalled his two Pokemon into their Pokeballs. In another fluid motion he took his Pokedex from his pocket as well. The digital time on the front screen read '3:49'. Edward blinked. Kyogre's death, drowning, discovering Latias, battling Nuria, fighting all those Geodudes... it seemed all too much for only one day. How long was he out for each of those encounters with Latias? Did they take any time at all, or... Behind him he heard slow, satirical clapping, disrupting his thoughts.

“Bravo, Eddy,” Nuria said drily, perched atop a small boulder, Pokeball in hand. “How many was that? Ten? Twenty?” she asked. “Mudkip should be proud. After all, it did manage to spray water on a bunch of hydrophobic rocks.”

“At least I did something. What have you been doing for the past couple of hours?” Edward spat. Nuria raised an eyebrow.

“Why all the hate, Eddy? Is wanting to look after you really such a bad thing for me to do?”

“Shut up,” Edward growled darkly. “You don't want to look after me, you just want someone to boss around.”

Nuria sighed, rolling her eyes. “Well, if you really want to know, I caught another Pokemon.” The statement took Edward by surprise. Even though he'd intended to distance himself from Nuria, he still felt left out that he hadn't seen her catch her third Pokemon. “Don't worry though,” she continued, dropping from the small boulder and expertly landing on her feet, “it wasn't anything exciting. I just happened to see a Shellder flailing around in a rock pool, flicking its tongue in all directions, and I thought, 'hey, why not? When it evolves, a water and ice type could come in handy in the future,' so, after asking it if it minded being caught, I simply tapped a Pokeball against its shell and here I am now. So,” she went on, glancing up at his face, “when are you going to battle the Gym Leader?”

I still love Edward and Nuria's interactions, and Nuria with a Shellder? I love that too.


“What's it to you?” Edward sneered, turning his back on his ex-friend. He wasn't only doing this to distance himself from her. He also knew that if there was even a slight chance of avoiding her, he'd have to make sure Nuria had no idea what he was up to. But then again, he thought, how can I avoid her on such a small island?

Suddenly Edward felt someone close behind him, and whirled around to see the boat-man making his way towards the gym battle field. His walking was fast paced, and when he arrived he wasted no time in shouting: “The boat leaves for Slateport at seven thirty. After that you'll have to wait two days before I'm back here to move you off to Slateport.” And with that he simply turned and made his way back to the boat.

Edward's heart pounded. Two days. He couldn't wait that long... could he? He also thought back to what Latias had said about her brother coming soon. The dragon would probably seek him out, but how could they communicate if there were so many other people on such a small island? He knew he'd have to leave for Slateport today. Which meant facing the Gym Leader soon.

Not even addressing Nuria, Edward turned toward the battlefield and made his way to the end of the long queue of trainers waiting for their turn to face the Gym Leader.

Well, there we go. Edward's going to actually push himself.

I almost wonder if Edward is going to push himself too hard. He's shown himself to be someone who suffers a lot of emotional stress, and if he keeps trying to push Nuria away, he might snap.

Good chapter overall. I think we saw the beginning of a critical change in Edward's character, which should continue going forward.

flameswy
20th June 2012, 11:21 PM
Hey Hey hey, scaldaver, im here for the review game!

I Read through the latest chapter, and for the most part was pretty happy with it.

You didnt have the amount of description i like in my fantasy, but there was plenty and probably enough to please others so thats not a big problem at all.

The characters did how ever feel a little off. I appreciate that big things are happening, but the hero came off as a little whiny. he probably has good reason how ever, looking at the story. Still, i can tell you were trying to make him emphasize with him, but his attitude made it difficult.

XD

I not sure how much of an issue this is, but the time lapse near the end when hes training felt a little disorienting. i wasn't sure how much time had passed, or how exactly his ex-girl friend had gotten their, although i suppose thats not crucial to the story either. I think its just because you leap into the action so soon, instead of setting the setting immediately, so that might just be my fault for being a lazy reader.

Now i shall talk about what i liked rather then what i didn't.

:D

I liked how willing you seem to be to change gears often, it seems you like to jump from talking to descriptions quickly and easily, and that's easy reading and keeps me interested. I like your main character to an extent, since he does seem to have grit and ability, not just some generic hero from the games. His ex seems nice, but since i only read the chapter i didnt really get a deep look at what shes like.

Your setting seems well built and thought out, so I'm guessing you have this story at least partially planned out? I find it difficult to tell just how far you are into the story, since this resembles the piece in most where the adventure starts in earnest. he has a clear goal now, and a deadline not to mention some motivation.

This does make me wonder what you had done in the previous chapters though, maybe ill have to go read them.

xD

Anyway, Good job mate.

:D

Scaldaver
23rd June 2012, 9:45 PM
Well, sorry for the wait, but finally a new chapter! Thanks for all the comments, The Great Butler and flameswy! This might be my last chapter for a while - I've got other things going on too but I'll write when I can.

And, without further adu...


Chapter Twelve
Gym Battle Two

Less than a second before entering the haze, an atom-splitting, savage impact sent the killer crashing toward the ocean below with more force than a meteor.

The murderer slowed as it approached the water, the friction of its power vaporising some of the liquid beneath. It did not experience pain, merely dissatisfaction at this unscheduled delay. It began to turn its gaze skyward but was blasted downward by the invisible force again, crashing deep below the ocean surface. It aligned itself and looked toward the surface venomously. This disruption was only giving its quarry more time to escape.

The murderer closed its eyes, sensing the world around it. Suddenly it felt a massive power speeding towards it, almost as fast as light. It opened its eyes, allowing power to surge through it, and an explosion of pure power enveloped the killer's frame, atomising the water into its base components. It could sense its foe flying away rapidly to avoid the deadly energy.

The killer rose to avoid the resurgence of the water, looking skyward to its aggressor. The murderer's eye's widened slightly in surprise. The killer's attacker saw this minute shift in facial expression and changed shape.

Orange skin started to crawl over its grey legs and body, causing them to grow thicker and leaving only a small, spiked, blue strip on each of its knees. The large, turquoise and orange oblong melted into its head, the flesh reworking itself like wax to form a three-pronged mask. As well as this each thin tentacle split at the tip, the two sides peeling down the tentacle until there were two formed, one turquoise and one orange on each side. The only space left unchanged was the dark purple orb in its chest, twinkling even in the lack of sunlight.

In the split second this transformation took place, the creature lunged toward the killer, wasting no time in executing blows which could have levelled a continent. But this time the killer was ready. With each attack the air shook and thunder rolled, but the killer stayed motionless, absorbing the onslaught without so much as a blink.

And then the killer struck back.

***

Edward felt that the time in the queue seemed agonisingly long, time made even more unbearable by the fact that Nuria had joined the line straight after him. Judging by the decaying quality of the already dim light, the day was passing quickly.

Edward watched each battle intently, trying his best to ignore Nuria's constant inputs and opinions. By the time he was second in line, hours later at 6:57, he thought he'd had enough information. First off, the Machop, Heracross and Makuhita all lacked a non-physical move, meaning Zubat would be vital for this battle. Other trainers, however, hadn't been so successful with their prized Taillows, Murkrows and Wingulls, all of which had been taken out due to the psychics power of the Gym Leader's Meditite and his Timburr's Rock Throw. That would be a huge problem for Zubat. Luckily, there was nothing that appeared to be able to land a super-effective hit on anything like Nincada. But then again, there were only few moves Nincada possessed which could damage the muscle-bound hulks, such as Dig and the newly acquired Fury Swipes (which hadn't been adequately tried out against the Geodudes). Still, Edward reasoned, at least it's something.

The most difficult thing was what to do with Mudkip. Although the continuous Water Gun attack was pretty successful, the Gym Leader's bulky Pokemon looked as though they could absorb any amount of water spray.

As the person in front of him left to battle, Edward started to panic. There were an awful lot of children who hadn't won: Edward had only seen two win and they both had an evolved starter.

The thought suddenly jarred Edward out from his train of thought. Evolved starter...

An instant later he'd brought out his Pokedex and found his team's menu screen. In the short list he easily found Mudkip, and beside a tiny pixellated picture of it was '15' written in bold letters.

Edward's jaw almost dropped. When did that happen? he thought frantically. And if his memory served him correctly, Mudkip evolved at level sixteen!

Edward found himself so full of conflicting thoughts he couldn't order them into any category of importance. Is Mudkip ready to evolve? Does he know? What will it be like? When will it happen? The last thought struck hardest. Of course, if he were to use Mudkip in the Gym battle, he would most probably evolve.

Instantly the strategies taking form in his head ran in an entirely different direction. He found himself scrolling through Mudkip's moves, although the only new move was Bide.

More thoughts ran through his mind as he heard the battle before him intensify. Maybe if Mudkip stalls for long enough... But then he bit his cheek as he recalled the fact that the level system for Pokemon was just a rough guide of a Pokemon's prowess. After all, all biological life forms were different. There was every chance that Mudkip wouldn't evolve. But then again...Its Water Gun could keep the foes at bay for a little while at least...The threat of Bide could help deter the Gym Leader from using too powerful moves...How do Pokemon learn new moves anyway? Discarding the last, irrelevant thought for pondering upon later, Edward looked up and saw a rather miserable-looking trainer recalling a defeated Marill. When he turned to leave, Edward's heart skipped a beat. My turn.

In the short walk over to his side of the make-shift arena, he ran through the most important facts from his observations: Zubat'll be weak against Meditite...Mudkip should try and stall... The Machop has a mean Low Kick and Facade...Makuhita's Arm Thrusts are deadly... These and a million more tiny tit-bits of information coursed through his mind during the short walk, the large jumble of random facts tripping over themselves and causing his mind to blank.

Breathing deeply, Edward arrived at the challenger's position as the aged Gym Leader, who Edward had found out was called Dave, asked how many Pokemon he had to fight with. After stuttering the word 'three' he waited for his opponent to release his first Pokemon. But the Gym Leader made no movement. After a tense, awkward few seconds, the Gym Leader coughed politely.

“Challengers go first,” he said loudly yet kindly across the chalk-drawn arena. Edward could have almost slapped himself for forgetting one of the most basic rules of Pokemon battling as the crowd s******ed from all sides. But this didn't happen in the last Gym battle, he reminded himself, turning pink as he remembered Nuria's previous comment: Have you forgotten that Rocky's been Gym Leader for only two weeks? But now this was a proper, educated Gym Leader. Barely breathing, Edward chose a sphere randomly from his pocket and threw it high into the air without a moment of consideration, hoping only to avert attention from his grievous oversight.

A millisecond later and Edward was furious with himself. Why didn't I think this through? he mentally spat at himself. As the ball bounced on the ground and flew back into his outstretched palm he saw the white plasma take shape of... Nincada! Edward breathed a sigh of relief. At least it wasn't Mudkip.

“Go, Heracross!” the Gym Leader roared, throwing forth the blue insectoid from its Pokeball. Edward still couldn't get over how weird looking the thing was, although, he rationalised, Heracross were never seen in Hoenn, even after the Shift, so he hadn't learnt that much about them. Something to do with the lack of sap-filled trees, he recalled. Suddenly Edward shook himself out of it. Focus! he growled to himself. At any rate, he knew for certain that Heracross was a Bug and Fighting type. Nincada would be in absolutely no danger.

“Dig!” Edward commanded, and instantly the little insect began to chisel away at the rock at lightning-fast speeds.

“Aerial Ace!” the Gym Leader shouted, throwing his ripped arm forward in a commanding gesture.

What!? Edward screamed internally. Suddenly two, translucent wings slid upward from behind the insect, and the next second the horn Pokemon was air-borne.

What!? Edward repeated in panic. It hasn't used that move before! It's a Fighting and Bug type for Pete's sake! What the hell's it doing with wings?

But it appeared the bulky insect cared little for Edward's logic, and in an instant had swiped at Nincada's head at lightning speed with the two claws on its right arm. Luckily for the burrowing insect, he had managed to dig deep enough for the blow not to knock him out, but what was worse was the sickening crack his head made as it collided with the rock. After a second of shaking his head from side to side, little droplets of brown blood escaping the hole, the Nincada continued digging, but at a slower pace. Even though he wasn't going at top speed, Edward knew Nincada had escaped low enough to avoid another devastating blow.

Edward bit into his lip. He knew Nincada couldn't be in good shape, especially after two such nasty head collisions. If only there was a way to...

“Nincada!” Edward shouted out suddenly, funnelling his mouth with his hands so Nincada could hear. “Stop Digging and use Harden!”

Edward waited a few tentative seconds, but there was no emergence of Nincada. Which meant it had heard and used Harden. In that case...

“Use Harden again. And again. Keep using Harden until you can't any more!” Edward roared, starting to grin as he finished. After this, he knew, Nincada would be a tank. “Come back up when you're finished!”

“Bulk Up!” the Gym Leader commanded to his insect in flight. Edward's heart sank. Now his Heracross will just hit harder and be harder to hit. The insectoid landed and began to flex its muscles, and Edward made out a slight increase in its muscle size.

Before it could finish, the rock beneath Heracross cracked, and just as it looked down Nincada jumped out, slamming into the horn Pokemon's face.

“Fury Swipes!” Edward commanded after a moment's delay. The trainee Pokemon locked onto the Heracross' horn with its grey hind legs and slashed mercilessly at its face with its brown front limbs. The Heracross stumbled backwards, flailing its arms, as deep rivulets were etched into its metal-like armour.

“Horn Attack,” the Gym Leader said calmly, his eyes narrowing as he formulated plans. The Heracross suddenly jumped forwards, slamming its head into the granite. Nincada's body prevented the insect's actual face colliding with the ground, his now-tougher exoskeleton creating sparks on impact with the rock. It was still hurt, however, and scratched feebly at Heracross' face as it continues the Fury Swipes.

This is getting us nowhere, Edward thought as he held up Nincada's Pokeball. As tough as he was right now, Nincada just didn't have the offensive ability to take down Heracross quick enough, especially because of that Aerial Ace. Free of the burden, Heracross stood, holding a hand up to its ravaged face as it breathed heavily. Edward felt a pang of guilt until he remembered why he was doing this.

“Zubat, use Wing Attack!” Edward commanded as Zubat formed from the white plasma. Faster than the Gym Leader could issue a command, the poisonous bat darted past the horn Pokemon, slashing a suddenly-serrated wing at the bug's side. It let loose a shriek of pain and collapsed onto its knees, gasping for breath.

“Endure!” the Gym Leader countered and, even though it seemed fit to crash a second before, the Heracross retained its panting position.

“Wing Attack again!” Edward ordered as his spirits began to leap. Endure doesn't always work! he thought as the Zubat flew closer and closer, until he got so close it extended both his wings firmly at the same time and-

“Horn Attack!” the Gym Leader commanded, and suddenly, with what Edward could see was the last of its strength, Heracross turned to face the Zubat and jutted its great blue horn into the bat's underbelly as the wing scraped into the fighting type's face. The insect fell, motionless, as Zubat crashed to the floor, clearly winded. As he gasped to inhale more air, Edward's opponent withdrew Heracross in a flash of red and threw another Pokeball high into the air. The ball snapped open at the hinges and white plasma spilled out and contorted randomly in the air; a second later the blue and white Meditite sat, cross-legged, on the rock, looking at Zubat and Edward with wide eyes.

Before the Gym Leader could issue a command Zubat had been returned to his Pokeball, safe from the threat of Meditite. Edward didn't even have to think about who to send out next. The next second, Nincada had formed, standing stock-still as a thin trail of brown blood leaked from a gash on the side of his face and his left green wing, slightly torn, twitched pitifully. Edward almost recalled Nincada then and there. How can it fight when it is so hurt? Edward also noticed that metallic sheen of the bug's exoskeleton had disappeared. Of course Edward knew that the molecular changes made by the Pokeball eradicated all changes to the Pokemon's abilities made during battle. And with such bad health and poor defence, how was Nincada going to survive?

But then again, he reasoned, surely the best way to learn Nincada's limits is to test them? Isn't that the real reason I'm doing this anyway? Edward saw Nincada stamp a leg impatiently, awaiting a command. Edward's blood froze. How long had he been distracted? He looked over to the Meditite and saw it Meditating, eyes closed as it whispered to itself, retaining its cross-legged position.

“Dig, and Harden until you can't Harden more, then come back up,” Edward said in a levelled voice to his Pokemon. Nincada nodded and started burrowing, quickly disappearing below the rock. In response the Gym Leader did nothing except encourage Meditite to continue Meditating. Seconds passed. Then the Gym Leader changed tactic:

“Mind Reader!” he commanded, and suddenly the meditate Pokemon's eyelids flew open, revealing eyes alive with light blue psychic energy. It stared unseeingly at Edward for seconds whilst the tension increased.

Then the thunder rolled.

The sudden blast of sound in the silent battle made everyone in the vicinity jump: even Meditite's eye's flashed off as it looked around, panicked. Edward fixed his gaze skyward and looked around to all of the horizons as the booming rumbled on. Strange... Not a storm-cloud in sight...

Suddenly Edward got the feeling he was being watched. Except it didn't feel like a mild inkling - it actually felt as though someone was boring holes into the side of his head. He whipped his head around to Nuria, but, to Edward's surprise, she was still looking upward with her brows knitted together. Then who...

Edward saw the boy a second before he looked away from Nuria. There he stood, leaning against a boulder, arms crossed, glaring at Edward so darkly Edward could feel his hate radiating towards him. But who's-

Oblivious to the events unfolding, a gleaming Nincada shot out from the rock beneath Meditite, causing it to fly upward and scream in its startled state. No quicker had the thunder started than it stopped, and dozens of confused, unfocused eyes looked upon the battle.

Edward shook his head, trying to throw off his confusion at the events which had just passed. Focus on the battle...

“Leech Life!” Edward shouted. Instantly the little insect jumped at the startled fighting type and sank his tooth into its leg. The Meditite panicked and started slapping at it pitifully. Instead of feeling pain, Edward noticed, Nincada's cut had healed over, stemming the flow of brown blood. All while, Meditite's power became weaker and weaker.

“Confusion!” the Gym Leader commanded hurriedly. Meditite's eyes once again became luminescent blue, and this time so did Nincada. The trainee Pokemon's body instantly bent sideways, perpendicular to Meditite's leg as the psychic Pokemon tried to dislodge the bug. Said bug's mouth, however, was still firmly clamped onto the meditate Pokemon, and the tugging of its flesh caused Meditite to instantly screech in pain.

“Now Ice Punch!” the Gym Leader shouted, showing visible discomfort at his Pokemon's suffering. With Nincada still perpendicular to it, Meditite drew back a fist, and as it did so small crystals of ice began to form on the the little Pokemon's knuckles. Suddenly Meditite brought down its ice-encased fist onto Nincada's body.

Nincada, vulnerable to the cold, opened his mouth in shock and found itself a second later scraping against the rock. Edward sighed, relieved that the insect's shell was enough to protect it from harm. But then he saw something else – the quick, irregular spreading of the ice crystals along Nincada's exoskeleton from Meditite's frozen fist. Not good, Edward thought.

“Nincada-” Edward started, but struggled to come up for ideas on what to do. Nincada was stuck between Meditite's fist and the rock. The ice had started to encase Nincada's back and the only moves Nincada knew were physical. He knew Dig couldn't be an option – Nincada was stuck so awkwardly that his legs just lay flat out at his side. Then Edward saw Nincada's eyes – wide and terrified.

“Return!” Edward shouted as he held out the Nincada's Pokeball. As the insect turned into solid red light and shot back into the ball, Meditite's fist crashed into the ground. It remained in the position, breathing raggedly and looking down to the rivulets of blood seeping from its puncture wound in its leg. It didn't look as though it could last much longer, especially after so much of its energy was lost in the sustained Ice Punch.

I need something which can take it out quickly, Edward knew, but was Meditite strong enough to harm Zubat before Zubat knocked it out? Edward took another glance at Meditite's pitiful, weakened state and made his decision.

“Meditate,” the Gym Leader said calmly to his Pokemon. As Edward threw his Pokeball high into the air, Meditite struggled into a sitting position and closed its eyes. Zubat formed from the white energy, lying on the floor as it gulped down breaths.

Damn! He's still winded! Edward cursed as Zubat recovered. So much for finishing it off straight away!

“Confusion!” Edward's foe commanded. Meditite's eyes snapped open, blue with psychic energy... then flickered off as it gasped for breath. Edward saw the Gym Leader bite his lip, seeing how weak Meditite had become. Then he sighed – whatever plan he'd come up with, he wasn't happy with it. Was he admitting defeat? Edward felt a welling sense of pride within him. Am I really giving a Gym Leader such a hard time? he thought.

Zubat recovered after a few seconds and flew into the air, its left wing bent ever so slightly at the tip.

“Wing Attack!” Edward called, completely confident that there was nothing his opponent could do to-

“Ice Punch,” his opponent said reluctantly, looking sadly upon his Pokemon. What? But it's far too weak to-

Suddenly the Meditite jumped, soaring in the air toward Zubat. The bat's momentum prevented it from deviating from its flight path, so it flew straight toward the rapidly approaching airborne fighting type.

In the split second before contact Meditite drew a fist back, focused on creating ice, and-

The impacting blow appeared to last for aeons as the fist smashed its way into the bat's face.

The equal momentum of both Zubat and Meditite left the two together in the air for a second. The next, gravity pulled the duo to Earth. Edward's heart, which had leapt into his mouth during the impact, began to thrum wildly. Would Zubat be able to...?

After a few seconds he saw it was no use. Zubat lay motionless, half-encrusted with ice.

Edward recalled Zubat immediately. Although he knew he should feel grateful to the bat, he also felt minor frustration that it had still fainted with a type advantage over such a weakened opponent. Speaking of which, why hasn't Meditite been recalled?

Meditite was still on the floor, unmoving, yet its trainer hadn't recalled it yet. Instead the Gym Leader was looking at it with sorrowful eyes. Why isn't he doing anything? he wondered, slightly infuriated that a trainer could let his Pokemon suffer so-

Meditite's leg twitched.

Edward's mouth dropped open as the broken figure gradually, shaking, pushed itself upward into standing – the mere effort making it breathe in sobs and causing its legs to quake.

Even though it had completely beat up his Pokemon, looked as though it was wearing a nappy and appeared to have whipped cream on it head, Edward had to concede that Meditite, standing bloodied and bruised, dead on its feet, looked pretty damn awesome at the moment.

Only then did the Gym Leader recall his Pokemon, only then did he allow his Pokemon to rest. He held the Pokeball to his forehead, as though sending Meditite his thought. Then again, maybe he really was, considering Meditite was part psychic-type and all.

Still one little thing was nagging at Edward in the back of his mind. After a few seconds, which Edward considered to be enough time, Edward spoke up:

“Why could Meditite use such a powerful Ice Punch when it couldn't do Confusion a second ago?” The Gym Leader looked up at Edward suddenly, as though he forgot Edward was even there. Then he shrugged.

“Meditite's mental powers were being used at that time to keep her conscious. Anything else on her mind and she would have collapsed.”

Edward shrugged as well. It seemed legit.

“I will also treat Meditite as fainted – there is no more she can do except get more hurt. She has reached her limit.”

Edward nodded before realising something. His opponent was down to only one Pokemon, whilst he had two... or did Nincada not count? After all, it was half frozen. Inactive, but not unconscious. Would it be fair to let it battle again? Edward knew he had to make a decision fast – after all, Zubat had fainted first, so he'd have to choose the next Pokemon first.

After a few seconds of intense thought, Edward threw a Pokeball into the air, and a half frozen, wide-eyed Nincada formed. How painful was the biting cold in his back? Edward felt a pang of guilt for forcing Nincada back into agony, but at least his opponent didn't know about Mudkip.

The Gym Leader threw forth his last Pokeball, and the humanoid shape of Machop formed. Instantly, before any damage could be done to Nincada, Edward had recalled him.

“Can we say that Nincada is out too?” Edward asked. The Gym Leader smiled and nodded.

Edward took a deep, levelled breath. Now it was one-on-one, either Mudkip or Machop.

A few seconds later and the sparkling white plasma formed into the shape of Mudkip, eyes fierce, front legs crouched in an offensive position as it growled menacingly. Was it possible that Mudkip knew this was a particularly important battle? Or was this simply the way it reacted to other Pokemon now?

That was a worrying thought. In the past three days, what have I done other than battle with Mudkip? Shouldn't trainers spend more time with their Pokemon? He let the troubling thought die, determined to clear his head, to calm himself.

“Water Gun!” Edward yelled, louder than he expected. Mudkip rolled his head back, then snapped it forward, the jet of water erupting from it mouth definitely stronger than it had been during the Geodude battles previously. Edward grinned. Just how close was Mudkip to evolving?

“Dodge, and use Focus Energy!” his foe shouted. Machop jumped suddenly out of the way of the oncoming blast of water and, after aligning itself properly, closed its eyes and stood still.

“Water Gun again!” Edward shouted quickly, his heart beating rapidly.

“Dodge again, and use Bulk Up!”

This time, however, Machop wasn't fast enough, and as it tried to jump is was caught in the chest and was buffeted backwards. It managed to orientate itself in mid-air and skidded on the rock to stop itself. As Mudkip's Water Gun fizzled out, Machop started flexing, its muscles growing before Edward's eyes.

“Growl!” Edward shouted, and Mudkip let loose a vicious Growl, far more savage than he had two days previous against the Zigzagoon. Machop flinched slightly, but continued flexing.

“Now, Karate Chop!” Edward's opponent yelled. Machop jumped forward, arm raised.

“Bide!” Edward yelled for the first time in his life. And Mudkip did... nothing. The Machop's arm came down like a guillotine on Mudkip's head. He crumpled to the ground, head fin bent. Surprised at the lack of resistance, Machop raised its hand again.

“Stop – don't do it!” the Gym Leader roared, but it was too late – another hand slashed at Mudkip, this time on his back.

“Machop, get out of the way!” Edward's opponent shouted desperately. Machop looked up to its trainer, confused as its master's panic. After all, what could be so scary about a weak, near-defeated Mudkip?

Suddenly Mudkip jumped up, glowing white with pure power. Machop stumbled back, shocked, as Mudkip jumped with the force of an accelerating truck into the humanoid, sending it crashing it back. It sprawled, skidding, onto the floor, cutting its grey-green skin on the rough rock. Edward blinked, surprised. Wow, that was powerful.

Machop shakily stood, holding a gash on its side to stem the flow of blood.

“Water Gun!” Edward yelled, excitement building within him. Not far to go now...

The jet of water hit the fighting type square in the chest. It fell. And stayed down.

It took a few seconds for Edward to realise he'd won. It seemed so anticlimactic – surely there should be some epic clash at the end of a proper Gym battle? Even though he knew he should be happy he'd won, he couldn't help but feel something was missing.

Mudkip. Why wasn't he ecstatically jumping up and down on him? He searched the battle field, but no sign of the mud fish. Then where-

Edward jumped slightly as he registered Mudkip standing directly in front of him at his feet, head bowed. Edward looked at him, unable to understand why Mudkip wasn't so happy. Was he really hurt? After all, his head fin was really bent. Is it broken? Maybe he'd need healing or-

“What did I do wrong?” Mudkip droned in a monotone. Edward's eyes narrowed. What?

“Um, nothing?” Edward half-asked. Mudkip shook his head, looking up to Edward with hurt eyes.

“There must be something! Why aren't you happy? There must be something I did wrong. There must be a way I can get better.” Mudkip bowed his head again.

Edward had no idea what to say. In light of everything which had happened, words of consolation and to instil confidence seemed so hollow. He thought for words, but none came. He knew he had to say something quickly – after all, every second wasted and Mudkip would get more and more depressed.

Just a second before kneeling down Edward was shoved to the side. Looking up, Edward saw an irate Nuria taking his place, preparing for battle. Edward did his best job at glaring daggers at her. How dare she interrupt this? Nuria, on her part, totally ignored Edward and called across that she wanted to use two Pokemon in the battle.

He looked over to Mudkip, still head bowed in front of him.

“Mudkip?” he asked tentatively, but the mud fish was unresponsive. Why am I so useless at the whole emotions thing? he thought as he returned the miserable Mudkip to his Pokeball. Shooting one last 'killer' glare at Nuria, he walked over to to the Gym Leader to collect his prize. The old man was grinning at him as he held out his hand – on top of which was a small blue and orange piece of metal which vaguely resembled a boxing glove.

“Thank you, Mr. Gym Leader,” Edward said, taking the badge and making to leave, his thoughts of Mudkip preventing him from experiencing much joy.

“Call me Dave. And wait,” the man said, reaching for a rucksack near his feet. Edward raised an eyebrow. What more is there? He was even more confused as the Gym Leader produced a padded book, and when he opened it there were not pages, but CDs in plastic wrapping. He slid one out of the plastic covering and handed it to Edward. A TM? For me?

Then he remembered – that's what Gym Leaders were supposed to give you when you won against them. No wonder I forgot after all that's gone on. The Gym Leader saw his confusion and cocked his head.

“Why are you so confused, lad?” he asked. Edward smiled politely and shook his head.

“It's nothing – it's just that the last Gym Leader must've forgot.” The Gym Leader narrowed his eyes.

“Oh, did he? Well, what's your name, boy? I'll make sure it's delivered to your PC.”

“Edward Lance,” Edward replied, still smiling pleasantly.

“Well Edward, I'll make sure Rocky gets something to you – he is relatively new, after all. Oh, and that was a brilliant battle we had there. I've never seen Nincada used like that, and your Mudkip has marvellous staying power.”

Edward's beam became real for a slight second. Mudkip would like to hear that. He nodded, thanked the Gym Leader, and made his way past the mountain on his way to the boat.

What time is it? Edward wondered. Soon he had his Pokedex out – 7:20. He grinned – surely Nuria would be unable to follow him now! He continued toward the boat, wondering how many other people would be leaving with-

Before he knew what was going on, Edward had been whirled around by the scuff of his neck and pushed up against a boulder. His head exploded into pain – was he bleeding? His eyes gradually focused – onto the boy he had seen glaring at him during the battle. Except now his scowl was much darker, pure hatred emanating from those dark, void-like pupils.

“Who the hell are you,” he growled, his voice just as icy as his stare, “and why the hell did my sister let you catch her?”



Chapter 13 - Duped (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14846621&postcount=96)

overlordmewtwo
24th June 2012, 3:33 AM
Orange skin started to crawl over its grey legs and body, causing them to grow thicker and leaving only a small, spiked, blue strip on each of its knees. The large, turquoise and orange oblong melted into its head, the flesh reworking itself like wax to form a three-pronged mask. As well as this each thin tentacle split at the tip, the two sides peeling down the tentacle until there were two formed, one turquoise and one orange on each side. The only space left unchanged was the dark purple orb in its chest, twinkling even in the lack of sunlight.

In the split second this transformation took place, the creature lunged toward the killer, wasting no time in executing blows which could have levelled a continent. But this time the killer was ready. With each attack the air shook and thunder rolled, but the killer stayed motionless, absorbing the onslaught without so much as a blink.

It's Deoxys! The murderer has finally been revealed! Good job about using description to tell us who the killer was. I truly had to read this a few times to make sure I was reading it right. I remember Deoxys being red, not orange, though... no matter... With it going into Attack form, Rayquaza will be in for a real fight that he'll likely lose (remember Deoxys vs. Rayquaza in Destiny Deoxys; Deoxys nearly beat Rayquaza twice).


“Who the hell are you,” he growled, his voice just as icy as his stare, “and why the hell did my sister let you catch her?”

Oh, s***... it's Latios... and he's angry...

Keep up the good work!

Scaldaver
24th June 2012, 11:18 AM
It's Deoxys! The murderer has finally been revealed!

Erm... not quite, my friend. If we look at the passage before that closely:


The killer rose to avoid the resurgence of the water, looking skyward to its aggressor. The murderer's eye's widened slightly in surprise. Its attacker saw this minute shift in facial expression and changed shape.

As we can see, Deoxys is actually the Murderer's attacker. I'll change it to make this stand out more.


Oh, s***... it's Latios... and he's angry...

Hell yeah.


Keep up the good work!

Will do! Thanks for posting, Overlordmewtwo!

ChloboShoka
25th June 2012, 10:17 PM
My favourite part of the chapter was the opening scene with Deoxys confronting the killer because I liked the way the action and forms where described. I also liked the emotional conflict in the gym battle concerning Edward's mistakes in the battle.

Scaldaver
28th June 2012, 9:16 PM
My favourite part of the chapter was the opening scene with Deoxys confronting the killer because I liked the way the action and forms where described. I also liked the emotional conflict in the gym battle concerning Edward's mistakes in the battle.

Thanks for this. Thanks especially for saying the action was good - I worried that it was not sufficient. What do you mean by 'form' though?

The Great Butler
30th June 2012, 9:10 AM
I'm doing this review for the Review Game, so this time I'm going to lay things out a little differently than usual.



Chapter Twelve
Gym Battle Two

Less than a second before entering the haze, an atom-splitting, savage impact sent the killer crashing toward the ocean below with more force than a meteor.

The murderer slowed as it approached the water, the friction of its power vaporising some of the liquid beneath. It did not experience pain, merely dissatisfaction at this unscheduled delay. It began to turn its gaze skyward but was blasted downward by the invisible force again, crashing deep below the ocean surface. It aligned itself and looked toward the surface venomously. This disruption was only giving its quarry more time to escape.

The murderer closed its eyes, sensing the world around it. Suddenly it felt a massive power speeding towards it, almost as fast as light. It opened its eyes, allowing power to surge through it, and an explosion of pure power enveloped the killer's frame, atomising the water into its base components. It could sense its foe flying away rapidly to avoid the deadly energy.

The killer rose to avoid the resurgence of the water, looking skyward to its aggressor. The murderer's eye's widened slightly in surprise. The killer's attacker saw this minute shift in facial expression and changed shape.

Orange skin started to crawl over its grey legs and body, causing them to grow thicker and leaving only a small, spiked, blue strip on each of its knees. The large, turquoise and orange oblong melted into its head, the flesh reworking itself like wax to form a three-pronged mask. As well as this each thin tentacle split at the tip, the two sides peeling down the tentacle until there were two formed, one turquoise and one orange on each side. The only space left unchanged was the dark purple orb in its chest, twinkling even in the lack of sunlight.

In the split second this transformation took place, the creature lunged toward the killer, wasting no time in executing blows which could have levelled a continent. But this time the killer was ready. With each attack the air shook and thunder rolled, but the killer stayed motionless, absorbing the onslaught without so much as a blink.

And then the killer struck back.

I think this scene has both strengths and weaknesses. On the plus side, the imagery is very bold. I can visualize much of it without too much effort, and it paints a good picture of the action in my head. On the downside, however, the passage is written in a bit of a confusing manner. I'm having trouble distinguishing between Rayquaza, Deoxys and the murderer. It would be better off if you had more distinctive identification of each party present in the scene.


Edward felt that the time in the queue seemed agonisingly long, time made even more unbearable by the fact that Nuria had joined the line straight after him. Judging by the decaying quality of the already dim light, the day was passing quickly.

Edward watched each battle intently, trying his best to ignore Nuria's constant inputs and opinions. By the time he was second in line, hours later at 6:57, he thought he'd had enough information. First off, the Machop, Heracross and Makuhita all lacked a non-physical move, meaning Zubat would be vital for this battle. Other trainers, however, hadn't been so successful with their prized Taillows, Murkrows and Wingulls, all of which had been taken out due to the psychics power of the Gym Leader's Meditite and his Timburr's Rock Throw. That would be a huge problem for Zubat. Luckily, there was nothing that appeared to be able to land a super-effective hit on anything like Nincada. But then again, there were only few moves Nincada possessed which could damage the muscle-bound hulks, such as Dig and the newly acquired Fury Swipes (which hadn't been adequately tried out against the Geodudes). Still, Edward reasoned, at least it's something.

The most difficult thing was what to do with Mudkip. Although the continuous Water Gun attack was pretty successful, the Gym Leader's bulky Pokemon looked as though they could absorb any amount of water spray.

I think the depth of the analysis Edward is putting into his team for this battle speaks well about his character. It tells me that underneath his panicked exterior is someone who is capable of rational thought. He shows the ability to analyze challenges with a surprising amount of clarity.


As the person in front of him left to battle, Edward started to panic. There were an awful lot of children who hadn't won: Edward had only seen two win and they both had an evolved starter.

The thought suddenly jarred Edward out from his train of thought. Evolved starter...

An instant later he'd brought out his Pokedex and found his team's menu screen. In the short list he easily found Mudkip, and beside a tiny pixellated picture of it was '15' written in bold letters.

Edward's jaw almost dropped. When did that happen? he thought frantically. And if his memory served him correctly, Mudkip evolved at level sixteen!

I continue to like how you depict levels. You're pretty good at handling them in a way that the numbers matter but aren't strictly stuck to.


Edward found himself so full of conflicting thoughts he couldn't order them into any category of importance. Is Mudkip ready to evolve? Does he know? What will it be like? When will it happen? The last thought struck hardest. Of course, if he were to use Mudkip in the Gym battle, he would most probably evolve.

Instantly the strategies taking form in his head ran in an entirely different direction. He found himself scrolling through Mudkip's moves, although the only new move was Bide.

More thoughts ran through his mind as he heard the battle before him intensify. Maybe if Mudkip stalls for long enough... But then he bit his cheek as he recalled the fact that the level system for Pokemon was just a rough guide of a Pokemon's prowess. After all, all biological life forms were different. There was every chance that Mudkip wouldn't evolve. But then again...Its Water Gun could keep the foes at bay for a little while at least...The threat of Bide could help deter the Gym Leader from using too powerful moves...How do Pokemon learn new moves anyway? Discarding the last, irrelevant thought for pondering upon later, Edward looked up and saw a rather miserable-looking trainer recalling a defeated Marill. When he turned to leave, Edward's heart skipped a beat. My turn.

Again, I appreciate the personality Edward's showing here. It's not entirely common to see someone analyze their challenges and situation in such depth, I think.


A millisecond later and Edward was furious with himself. Why didn't I think this through? he mentally spat at himself. As the ball bounced on the ground and flew back into his outstretched palm he saw the white plasma take shape of... Nincada! Edward breathed a sigh of relief. At least it wasn't Mudkip.

“Go, Heracross!” the Gym Leader roared, throwing forth the blue insectoid from its Pokeball. Edward still couldn't get over how weird looking the thing was, although, he rationalised, Heracross were never seen in Hoenn, even after the Shift, so he hadn't learnt that much about them. Something to do with the lack of sap-filled trees, he recalled. Suddenly Edward shook himself out of it. Focus! he growled to himself. At any rate, he knew for certain that Heracross was a Bug and Fighting type. Nincada would be in absolutely no danger.

I think this is a good explanation of why he doesn't recognize Heracross. It's a perfectly plausible, believable reason, and I think it fits in perfectly.

We can also see a bit of weakness on Edward's part, because it's obvious that Heracross isn't going to be beaten by simple type-matching.


“Horn Attack,” the Gym Leader said calmly, his eyes narrowing as he formulated plans. The Heracross suddenly jumped forwards, slamming its head into the granite. Nincada's body prevented the insect's actual face colliding with the ground, his now-tougher exoskeleton creating sparks on impact with the rock. It was still hurt, however, and scratched feebly at Heracross' face as it continues the Fury Swipes.

This is getting us nowhere, Edward thought as he held up Nincada's Pokeball. As tough as he was right now, Nincada just didn't have the offensive ability to take down Heracross quick enough, especially because of that Aerial Ace. Free of the burden, Heracross stood, holding a hand up to its ravaged face as it breathed heavily. Edward felt a pang of guilt until he remembered why he was doing this.

“Zubat, use Wing Attack!” Edward commanded as Zubat formed from the white plasma. Faster than the Gym Leader could issue a command, the poisonous bat darted past the horn Pokemon, slashing a suddenly-serrated wing at the bug's side. It let loose a shriek of pain and collapsed onto its knees, gasping for breath.

“Endure!” the Gym Leader countered and, even though it seemed fit to crash a second before, the Heracross retained its panting position.

“Wing Attack again!” Edward ordered as his spirits began to leap. Endure doesn't always work! he thought as the Zubat flew closer and closer, until he got so close it extended both his wings firmly at the same time and-

“Horn Attack!” the Gym Leader commanded, and suddenly, with what Edward could see was the last of its strength, Heracross turned to face the Zubat and jutted its great blue horn into the bat's underbelly as the wing scraped into the fighting type's face. The insect fell, motionless, as Zubat crashed to the floor, clearly winded. As he gasped to inhale more air, Edward's opponent withdrew Heracross in a flash of red and threw another Pokeball high into the air. The ball snapped open at the hinges and white plasma spilled out and contorted randomly in the air; a second later the blue and white Meditite sat, cross-legged, on the rock, looking at Zubat and Edward with wide eyes.

Before the Gym Leader could issue a command Zubat had been returned to his Pokeball, safe from the threat of Meditite. Edward didn't even have to think about who to send out next. The next second, Nincada had formed, standing stock-still as a thin trail of brown blood leaked from a gash on the side of his face and his left green wing, slightly torn, twitched pitifully. Edward almost recalled Nincada then and there. How can it fight when it is so hurt? Edward also noticed that metallic sheen of the bug's exoskeleton had disappeared. Of course Edward knew that the molecular changes made by the Pokeball eradicated all changes to the Pokemon's abilities made during battle. And with such bad health and poor defence, how was Nincada going to survive?

But then again, he reasoned, surely the best way to learn Nincada's limits is to test them? Isn't that the real reason I'm doing this anyway? Edward saw Nincada stamp a leg impatiently, awaiting a command. Edward's blood froze. How long had he been distracted? He looked over to the Meditite and saw it Meditating, eyes closed as it whispered to itself, retaining its cross-legged position.

“Dig, and Harden until you can't Harden more, then come back up,” Edward said in a levelled voice to his Pokemon. Nincada nodded and started burrowing, quickly disappearing below the rock. In response the Gym Leader did nothing except encourage Meditite to continue Meditating. Seconds passed. Then the Gym Leader changed tactic:

“Mind Reader!” he commanded, and suddenly the meditate Pokemon's eyelids flew open, revealing eyes alive with light blue psychic energy. It stared unseeingly at Edward for seconds whilst the tension increased.

Then the thunder rolled.

The sudden blast of sound in the silent battle made everyone in the vicinity jump: even Meditite's eye's flashed off as it looked around, panicked. Edward fixed his gaze skyward and looked around to all of the horizons as the booming rumbled on. Strange... Not a storm-cloud in sight...

The writing in this part stands out as particularly detailed while not being too 'purple.' It gives me a good, clear idea of what the Pokemon in the battle are doing by providing a lot of cues, mostly visual, to illustrate the scene. What's funny to realize is that this could have been written as a simple list of commands being exchanged, but you put a good amount of substance into it to make it come to life.


"Confusion!” the Gym Leader commanded hurriedly. Meditite's eyes once again became luminescent blue, and this time so did Nincada. The trainee Pokemon's body instantly bent sideways, perpendicular to Meditite's leg as the psychic Pokemon tried to dislodge the bug. Said bug's mouth, however, was still firmly clamped onto the meditate Pokemon, and the tugging of its flesh caused Meditite to instantly screech in pain.

“Now Ice Punch!” the Gym Leader shouted, showing visible discomfort at his Pokemon's suffering. With Nincada still perpendicular to it, Meditite drew back a fist, and as it did so small crystals of ice began to form on the the little Pokemon's knuckles. Suddenly Meditite brought down its ice-encased fist onto Nincada's body.

Nincada, vulnerable to the cold, opened his mouth in shock and found itself a second later scraping against the rock. Edward sighed, relieved that the insect's shell was enough to protect it from harm. But then he saw something else – the quick, irregular spreading of the ice crystals along Nincada's exoskeleton from Meditite's frozen fist. Not good, Edward thought.

“Nincada-” Edward started, but struggled to come up for ideas on what to do. Nincada was stuck between Meditite's fist and the rock. The ice had started to encase Nincada's back and the only moves Nincada knew were physical. He knew Dig couldn't be an option – Nincada was stuck so awkwardly that his legs just lay flat out at his side. Then Edward saw Nincada's eyes – wide and terrified.

“Return!” Edward shouted as he held out the Nincada's Pokeball. As the insect turned into solid red light and shot back into the ball, Meditite's fist crashed into the ground. It remained in the position, breathing raggedly and looking down to the rivulets of blood seeping from its puncture wound in its leg. It didn't look as though it could last much longer, especially after so much of its energy was lost in the sustained Ice Punch.

I need something which can take it out quickly, Edward knew, but was Meditite strong enough to harm Zubat before Zubat knocked it out? Edward took another glance at Meditite's pitiful, weakened state and made his decision.

“Meditate,” the Gym Leader said calmly to his Pokemon. As Edward threw his Pokeball high into the air, Meditite struggled into a sitting position and closed its eyes. Zubat formed from the white energy, lying on the floor as it gulped down breaths.

Damn! He's still winded! Edward cursed as Zubat recovered. So much for finishing it off straight away!

“Confusion!” Edward's foe commanded. Meditite's eyes snapped open, blue with psychic energy... then flickered off as it gasped for breath. Edward saw the Gym Leader bite his lip, seeing how weak Meditite had become. Then he sighed – whatever plan he'd come up with, he wasn't happy with it. Was he admitting defeat? Edward felt a welling sense of pride within him. Am I really giving a Gym Leader such a hard time? he thought.

Continuing from above, this is excellent description and writing style for a battle scene. You're weaving together both the action between the battling Pokemon and the emotions of the humans into a larger thing, and it's coming together extremely well.


That was a worrying thought. In the past three days, what have I done other than battle with Mudkip? Shouldn't trainers spend more time with their Pokemon? He let the troubling thought die, determined to clear his head, to calm himself.

“Water Gun!” Edward yelled, louder than he expected. Mudkip rolled his head back, then snapped it forward, the jet of water erupting from it mouth definitely stronger than it had been during the Geodude battles previously. Edward grinned. Just how close was Mudkip to evolving?

“Dodge, and use Focus Energy!” his foe shouted. Machop jumped suddenly out of the way of the oncoming blast of water and, after aligning itself properly, closed its eyes and stood still.

“Water Gun again!” Edward shouted quickly, his heart beating rapidly.

“Dodge again, and use Bulk Up!”

This time, however, Machop wasn't fast enough, and as it tried to jump is was caught in the chest and was buffeted backwards. It managed to orientate itself in mid-air and skidded on the rock to stop itself. As Mudkip's Water Gun fizzled out, Machop started flexing, its muscles growing before Edward's eyes.

“Growl!” Edward shouted, and Mudkip let loose a vicious Growl, far more savage than he had two days previous against the Zigzagoon. Machop flinched slightly, but continued flexing.

“Now, Karate Chop!” Edward's opponent yelled. Machop jumped forward, arm raised.

“Bide!” Edward yelled for the first time in his life. And Mudkip did... nothing. The Machop's arm came down like a guillotine on Mudkip's head. He crumpled to the ground, head fin bent. Surprised at the lack of resistance, Machop raised its hand again.

I very much like the selection of moves you're using here.


It took a few seconds for Edward to realise he'd won. It seemed so anticlimactic – surely there should be some epic clash at the end of a proper Gym battle? Even though he knew he should be happy he'd won, he couldn't help but feel something was missing.

Mudkip. Why wasn't he ecstatically jumping up and down on him? He searched the battle field, but no sign of the mud fish. Then where-

Edward jumped slightly as he registered Mudkip standing directly in front of him at his feet, head bowed. Edward looked at him, unable to understand why Mudkip wasn't so happy. Was he really hurt? After all, his head fin was really bent. Is it broken? Maybe he'd need healing or-

“What did I do wrong?” Mudkip droned in a monotone. Edward's eyes narrowed. What?

“Um, nothing?” Edward half-asked. Mudkip shook his head, looking up to Edward with hurt eyes.

“There must be something! Why aren't you happy? There must be something I did wrong. There must be a way I can get better.” Mudkip bowed his head again.

Edward had no idea what to say. In light of everything which had happened, words of consolation and to instil confidence seemed so hollow. He thought for words, but none came. He knew he had to say something quickly – after all, every second wasted and Mudkip would get more and more depressed.

Just a second before kneeling down Edward was shoved to the side. Looking up, Edward saw an irate Nuria taking his place, preparing for battle. Edward did his best job at glaring daggers at her. How dare she interrupt this? Nuria, on her part, totally ignored Edward and called across that she wanted to use two Pokemon in the battle.

He looked over to Mudkip, still head bowed in front of him.

“Mudkip?” he asked tentatively, but the mud fish was unresponsive. Why am I so useless at the whole emotions thing? he thought as he returned the miserable Mudkip to his Pokeball. Shooting one last 'killer' glare at Nuria, he walked over to to the Gym Leader to collect his prize. The old man was grinning at him as he held out his hand – on top of which was a small blue and orange piece of metal which vaguely resembled a boxing glove.

This whole scene was pretty crushingly depressing. Applause to you for showing that Edward's actions in his training have very real consequences.

To wrap up the review, I want to mention that I really like the pacing as well. At no point during this chapter did I feel as if it was dragging or going too fast. You spent an appropriate amount of time on the leadup to the battle, and the battle itself was solidly written with a great flow.

Scaldaver
1st July 2012, 8:02 PM
I'm doing this review for the Review Game, so this time I'm going to lay things out a little differently than usual.
I think this scene has both strengths and weaknesses. On the plus side, the imagery is very bold. I can visualize much of it without too much effort, and it paints a good picture of the action in my head. On the downside, however, the passage is written in a bit of a confusing manner. I'm having trouble distinguishing between Rayquaza, Deoxys and the murderer. It would be better off if you had more distinctive identification of each party present in the scene.


I didn't mean it to come off as Rayquaza being present... because it isn't. Basically, I tried making the murderer/killer and the aggressor/murderer's attacker etc different in this respect, but it's hard to come up with so much anonymity yet still give them specific names, as it makes it sound too repetitive otherwise. Any suggestions, anyone?

Chibi Pika
13th July 2012, 10:21 PM
Hey there. The past couple times I've seen your fic in the Review Game thread, I've always been tempted to jump in and review it, but someone else would always beat me to it. I finally decided enough was enough, and just went ahead and read most of the fic because dangit I'd been wanting to for awhile, regardless of whether there was anything in it for me. But then I let my barely-started review sit on my computer because I got too busy, until today, when I saw you in the review game again, and decided to continue it! 8D

And actually...I have to say...the thing that made me want to read your fic most of all...was that April Fool's chapter. From one TQFtL fan to another--that...that was gold. Pretty much everything about it had me dying on the floor laughing. That was when I knew that I had to read the rest of your fic. x3


The prologue does a great job of drawing the reader in immediately, and is in fact a very crucial part of the story, since otherwise it would just seem like a standard journey fic. But what's better is the fact that it gets adapted into showing bits and pieces of the ongoing Legendary murdering was a good way to keep the suspense through the early chapters, when otherwise it could be easy for readers to forget that this is not merely a standard journey fic.


Chapter 1:
Alright. other readers have mentioned this, so I won't dwell on it too much, but yeah, in the early chapters the Pokémon descriptions were particularly bad. I can tell that you've been improving throughout the fic on this regard, but I'll still try to give you a concise bit of advice. Pretty much any descriptive sentence that starts with "there was" or "it had" ought to be avoided straight out. Instead, focus on using verbs to describe things, as it's generally a lot more interesting that way.

I like that right from the very start, Mudkip's overenthusiasm and eagerness to please is very strongly expressed. The interactions of Edward and Nuria are also amusing, particularly her nabbing the blue Pokédex before him, and I enjoy reading about them, so well done on that. Also, upon looking back while writing this review, I notice there's already a bit of foreshadowing with Nuria leaving without permission, which is cool.


Chapter 2:
Giving the aggresive, dominant Nuria an adamant and strong-willed Pokémon was a nice touch, as it forces her to develop more as a character than she would with a Pokémon that didn't mind being used so long as it got stronger in the process. Though I am kind of curious why Chikorita would still be willing to be a starter after her first bad trainer. This almost implies that, despite her resentment towards trainers, she actually wants to find one who will prove her wrong.

You can probably afford to use less words for "said" as a couple instances of avoiding it have felt a bit out of place.

The Shift is an interesting concept, and one that I'm definitely looking forward to seeing more of.

“Well then, used Growl and stay away!” He couldn't risk his only Pokemon to sustain another direct hit like that. Mudkip barked threateningly again toward the Zigzagoon, and this time when it winced Edward noticed the steady flow of blood seeping out slowly from a wound on its back. Revulsion overcame Edward for a second, and he almost commanded Mudkip to return when he remembered a little titbit of knowledge from school. Pokémon heal far quicker than humans, that's why they can fight so long and hard, and don't mind doing so. Edward exhaled, getting over his split second of indecisiveness.
Nice job mentioning the fact that Pokemon have a high pain tolerance and heal faster than humans. That's something that a lot of people forget in their "OMG Pokémon battling is abuse!!11" tirades.

“Yeah. Maybe.” She spoke vacantly. "How is it possible that I could have gone so wrong so soon?” she murmered resting her head on Edward's side. Edward placed his arm over her shoulder. He completely understood what she meant: the excitement of the day you get your Pokémon, the plans you make to make sure everything goes smoothly... and then to mess up in the first ten minutes? That would hurt anyone's pride. “How did it go with you and Mudkip?”
I like that Nuria's upset here, as Chikorita's resentment was probably a harsh blow to her confidence, seeing things not go at all how she always thought they would. Her reaction feels a bit out of character, though. I'd expect her to be more frustrated and trying to rationalize her actions, rather than jumping straight to blaming herself.

Chapter 3:
Now this is interesting. Finding out that the Legendary-killer apparently regrets its actions, yet still continues them is an interesting tidbit, and one that makes the reader question, more than they already would have, why these events are happening.

I like the inclusion of the Capture Rules. A set of rules on human-Pokémon interactions is always interesting to see in fics.

Aaand, Groudon's death has already shaken up the story for the main characters, which is interesting, because I was wondering how you were going to have the journey and the Legendary's deaths first overlap. The imagery was strong and everyone's horrified reactions added a lot. And it looks like Kyogre is next...

Chapter 4:
The use of Abra for teleportation in dangerous times, as well as the characters' suspicion of him, was both interesting and entertaining.

“Good one!” he called, expecting Mudkip to return the enthusiasm. But instead he stood stock-still, still in his combat position. It was glaring at the tree, growling quietly. Edward could hear a feint buzzing noise.
Wrong word here--faint is the one you're looking for.

Heh it's interesting how everything about Ninjask lines up as the perfect compliment to Mudkip on a Pokemon team. It also makes me realize that things like strategic team lineups don't come up in fics very often. The use of Mud Slap to slick its wings also spiced up the battle. But dang, having a Level 20 Pokemon on his team this early would be pretty overpowering, wouldn't it...?

Chapter 5:
...Which is why is it HILARIOUS that that is exactly not what happens. xD I totally was not expecting that mix up, even with the chapter being called "Zubat" and that's even despite the fact that I was outright trying to guess how a Zubat would come up. And you had played up how perfect a Ninjask would be for him and everything, before pulling it out from under him. Nice job there. xD Also Zubats almost never get caught in fics. I can't think of any off the top of my head. The scenario for when he finds out it's not Ninjask was also set up perfectly.

And he talks in old English too. This just keeps getting better. Okay, okay, the immature, easily amused side of me gave way to the logical side here for a bit, as the fact that it's Pokéspeak being translated into English made the idea of Edward somehow hearing it as old English to be kind of hard to believe. But then you went and explained that it's more like an outdated format of Pokéspeak, and the closest equivalent for the Translation Convention is just old English, which is just barely believable enough to fit under my suspension of disbelief. ;) Also it's funny.

I notice you tend to overuse the word "grinned" a bit, especially with Edward. Sometime it works, but in some of the cases, it feels out of place, like in a situation that, while slightly amusing or pleasant or otherwise, wouldn't quite warrant a full-out grin. Maybe think about using some other words for it.


Anyways, I'm gonna wrap this up here because that's five chapters down and I don't want to get ninja'd in the review thread again. xP Definitely gonna catch up though, this is an entertaining read. Keep at it!

~Chibi~;249;;448;

Rotomknight
14th July 2012, 1:27 AM
Hello,
I am eager to see what Naui(n or whatever her name is) thinks when she sees him riding atop lati@s or being beaten up by him. PLease add me to the pm list.

Scaldaver
14th July 2012, 9:52 AM
And actually...I have to say...the thing that made me want to read your fic most of all...was that April Fool's chapter. From one TQFtL fan to another--that...that was gold. Pretty much everything about it had me dying on the floor laughing. That was when I knew that I had to read the rest of your fic. x3


RANDOM QUESTION NO1: How did you read the April Fool's chapter before the others?



Chapter 1:
Alright. other readers have mentioned this, so I won't dwell on it too much, but yeah, in the early chapters the Pokémon descriptions were particularly bad. I can tell that you've been improving throughout the fic on this regard, but I'll still try to give you a concise bit of advice. Pretty much any descriptive sentence that starts with "there was" or "it had" ought to be avoided straight out. Instead, focus on using verbs to describe things, as it's generally a lot more interesting that way.

Ahh, I had wondered what people were referring to at that point. I'll change it straight away (probably halving the chapter in the process...) :)


Also, upon looking back while writing this review, I notice there's already a bit of foreshadowing with Nuria leaving without permission, which is cool.

Yay, someone's menioned that! :D



Nice job mentioning the fact that Pokemon have a high pain tolerance and heal faster than humans. That's something that a lot of people forget in their "OMG Pokémon battling is abuse!!11" tirades.

Yeah, I thought that was obvious, and I wanted to get this out of the way so non of my characters went off battling because of 'cruelty'.


I like that Nuria's upset here, as Chikorita's resentment was probably a harsh blow to her confidence, seeing things not go at all how she always thought they would. Her reaction feels a bit out of character, though. I'd expect her to be more frustrated and trying to rationalize her actions, rather than jumping straight to blaming herself.

Hmm, I thought a little like this, but I was thinking that she'd already gone past rationalising by the time Edward got there. I might add some anyway, just for good measure.



I like the inclusion of the Capture Rules. A set of rules on human-Pokémon interactions is always interesting to see in fics.

Yay! First mention!


The use of Abra for teleportation in dangerous times, as well as the characters' suspicion of him, was both interesting and entertaining.

Yay! First mention again (even I'd forgotten about this bit...)


Wrong word here--faint is the one you're looking for.

I mix these up SO often.




I notice you tend to overuse the word "grinned" a bit, especially with Edward. Sometime it works, but in some of the cases, it feels out of place, like in a situation that, while slightly amusing or pleasant or otherwise, wouldn't quite warrant a full-out grin. Maybe think about using some other words for it.

Now I think about it, I do, don't I? I'll reword it, because 'smiled' sounds a bit strange.


Anyways, I'm gonna wrap this up here because that's five chapters down and I don't want to get ninja'd in the review thread again. xP

Meh - makes sense - but I forgive you ;)


Definitely gonna catch up though, this is an entertaining read. Keep at it!

Yay! Sure will!


Hello,
I am eager to see what Naui(n or whatever her name is) thinks when she sees him riding atop lati@s or being beaten up by him. PLease add me to the pm list.

Sure, of course. At the moment I'm just waiting for Dragonfree to finish proofreading (which will probably mean I've made tonnes of mistakes :P)

Scaldaver
18th July 2012, 8:43 PM
Sorry for the long wait, but here it is.

Anyway, lots of thanks for The Great Butler and Dragonfree for great beta-reading.

This chapter is rated PG-13 for violence only - no profanities, etc. Enjoy.

Chapter Thirteen
Duped

The battle over, the murderer sensed the area around it, searching for any remaining pieces it had missed in the obliteration process. It knew from past experience that everything must be destroyed to kill a member of this species.

Content that every last piece was destroyed, the killer surveyed its own body for damage. Deflecting all of those blows had reduced a substantial amount of its energy, as did the retaliation attacks of the previous Ancients.

Perhaps rest is necessary, the killer pondered. After a few seconds of deliberation the creature nodded, agreeing with its thought. Rest would be prudent, the murderer confirmed as it began to gently descend to the ocean surface. It closed its eyes and plummeted into the icy blue.

***

Edward's mind raced as he cowered before the deathly stare, the interrogatory questions still hanging in the air. What do I do, what do I do? he screamed internally. If only Nuria was here, he thought, thinking of her brute strength. Edward pushed weakly in order to dislodge his aggressor, but the grip on the scruff of his neck was too tight, the rough rock-face restricted his manoeuvrability, and -

Hang on, did he say sister?

Edward's eyes widened. Wait, surely he doesn't mean-

“Yes, you complete waste of organic material,” the boy hissed with more venom than an Arbok's fang, “I'm her brother. So I repeat, why the hell did my sister let you catch her?”

As the boy's glare raked over him, Edward's mind floundered. Wait... so this is...Latios?... But why's he so surprised to-

The boy suddenly growled and kicked the boulder behind Edward in rage, causing it to fracture, spider-web-thin cracks spreading across the rock.

“You're useless!” he snarled, and suddenly the world was black. Edward fell as the boulder behind him disappeared, causing him to yelp pitifully, his mind full of terror and confusion.

Bright, white light blinded Edward, causing him to shriek again. Blind and scared, he could only listen.

“God-dammit Latias, what the hell were you thinking?” came the boy's – or, as Edward realised it should, Latios' – snarl, substantially less icy than Edward had previously experienced.

“Saving our lives, you dimwit. How long do you think hiding will last us? Five, ten years? It didn't do any good for Groudon and Kyogre, did it?”

“That's beside the point!” Latios bellowed, the vibrations of his voice making the earth shake. “Groudon and Kyogre's whereabouts were not exactly well-hidden, were they? Running, hiding... it will last us much longer. Perhaps it will even leave us alone if it can't find us!”

“Do you believe that?” Latias demanded, her voice now more lethal than Edward had ever heard. Somehow, he got the feeling that if such anger were directed at him, he'd be wiped from existence. “What chance would we have at that? It's faster than us, stronger than us. What chance do we have at running?”

“A better chance than handing our LIVES over to this miserable, stupid CREATURE!” Latios yelled, so loud that Edward instantly went deaf at the end of the sentence. Clutching his aching ears, Edward ground his head on the rough, rocky floor, feeling only the coldness of his flesh and buzzing, static-like energy in the air.

What's going on? he thought, too shaken to cry. Why does Latios call me that? Wasn't it him who chose me?

The energy in the room suddenly stopped, replacing static with the unmistakeable atmosphere of tension. Instantly Edward felt his senses return: he heard the ragged inhalations of his breathing and saw-

His heart skipped a beat as he registered what was before him. Ever since he'd laid eyes on her, Edward had associated pure power with Latias. But Latios just blew him away.

He towered over his sibling, the terrible likeness between him and Latias only highlighting the sinister differences. Where pure white adorned Latias, mottled grey blemished Latios; where she shone red, he was blue. Another difference was much more pronounced – Latios' anger gave him a more powerful, dangerous edge over his sister. In human form, Latios' rage was scary. In this form, Edward could feel Latios' abhorrence as though it was a real, physical substance, saturating the air with malevolence. Edward froze, petrified. He just barely noticed that he was in the rocky cavern below Dewford in which he had previously met Latias.

“What,” Latios spat without moving his mouth, “did you just think?”

Edward stood, shaking, his mind completely devoid of thought. Latios bared his fangs.

“TELL ME!” he roared, causing the world to shake.

“You chose me!” Edward squeaked, unable to resist the command. “You- you chose me... to recruit the Legendaries...Latias said so.”

The air suddenly became so charged with energy that Edward's ears popped under the pressure. Latios turned his head slowly to a passive Latias.

“And you thought my plan was suicidal.” Latios' voice contained no emotion, yet Edward could see Latias shiver. She looked so small against her brother, but her voice remained calm.

“I did what I had to do. Do you think running is the best option? If we all ran, we'd be herded like cattle. But together, if we fight-”

“No, Las,” Latios said with finality, “it's too dangerous. This thing killed beings more powerful than us without exertion. We wouldn't stand a chance, even if we all banded together.” Latios' voice had become calm, reasoning, even. The air started to de-pressurize, though Latios' tough exterior remained unchanged. “I know you want to care for me, but-”

“It's not just about you, Los!” Latias shrieked suddenly, causing her brother to blink. “It's about all the other Ancients, all the other living things. We need to give everything else a chance, too. What would we do if it was just us two and nothing else?”

Latios hovered, still as a statue, for a few seconds, the battle raging inside him apparent. Finally he calmed, and he held out his hands.

“Fine, I understand your reasoning. But why him?” the male dragon asked, nodding toward Edward.

“Trust me, he has promise. He has caring, understanding, smarts-”

“But there are others more suited,” Latios stressed, talking over his sister yet again. She bit her lip, trying to find the best way to explain.

“He was the best for miles – it wasn't safe to sense any further,” she murmured, determinedly looking away from Edward. He furrowed his brow. What's going on?

“Really?” Latios half-laughed, “Can you not sense that girl up there? She's got fight in her – she'd never give up. From what you've seen of this one, he's a mess.” It took Edward a few seconds to realise that he was the subject of that final sentence. Suddenly it all came together, and cruel clarity ran through him.

“Wait,” he said, his fear of Latios forgotten for a second as he turned to Latias, “you lied to me?” In response, Latias, sagged her head.

What does this mean? Edward thought dimly. Was he really expected to survive this journey? Did Latias really have any faith in him at all?

“Look, Edward,” Latias beseeched to an unresponsive Edward, “I had to lie – I still have faith in you, but I thought that you needed to have faith in yourself.”

“So,” Edward said dully, his brain working slowly, “everything you said was a lie?” Latias' eyes suddenly widened slightly, as though remembering something.

“No!” Just then she turned her head to Latios. “But can't you sense what's on him? He's been in contact with another. He can be trusted.”

Latios' eyes narrowed as he surveyed Edward with a critical gaze. After a second he cocked his head to one side.

“Yes. But that doesn't make him the best choice. That fiery girl girl up there, though – she'd be more reliable.”

Silence. Unbearable silence. Then:

“Yes,” Latias said sadly, not looking toward Edward.

“Then why not choose her?” Latios asked, confused. Latias shrugged her little arms.

“Her Ralts had already connected with her. To build another connection with her would have killed both of them. I rationalised that her friend was a good choice both because of his connection with her and his own ingenuity. Besides, she may be too fiery – she may have refused or been too rash.”

Edward's muddled mind finally made the connection. His eyes widened, his jaw went slack, his mind raced from the shock. With a look of complete devastation at Latias, he rasped in a whispered shriek:

“You... chose...Nuria?”

Latios fixed Latias with a deadly gaze.

“So, basically, you settled for him? Why didn't you just kill the Ralts? But,” he spoke louder as Latias opened her mouth to protest, “I see your point. You believe that she is too rash, and I believe that he is too passive. Perhaps they would work better together?”

Latias' eyes lit up. “So, you believe that my plan would be successful? Do you finally concede that all of us fighting will be the only way to survive?”

“No, I believe that this is our best chance, as you said. An immensely thin chance at that. But the probability of us surviving would be greater. However, I do have one condition if I am to allow this plan,” he said, looking his sister in the eyes. “If they go on this journey, you and I will stay here, hidden.”

“And if I refuse?” Latias said, voice dangerously low. Now it was Latios' turn to shrug.

“I'll kill him and the girl,” he said lightly. Latias sagged her head in defeat. “Good,” murmured Latios, looking over to a dumbfounded Edward. “Now, you shall go up and bring your friend down here.”

Even though he could feel the weight of the command pushing against him, Edward used every ounce of his will to fight it.

“No,” he said, his authority highly diminished by the fact he was talking up to a Legendary dragon, “I refuse to put her in that sort of-”

“You shall do it or I shall kill her,” Latios intervened, glaring at Edward. His heart barely beating, Edward tried to find something, anything to say that would convince the dragon to relent. He found nothing.

“Now, go up, congratulate her on her win or whatever pleasantries you humans exchange, and bring her down here,” Latios commanded, his tone dangerously dark. Edward bit his lip, trying to fight the command, but nodded against his will. “Close your eyes,” Latios said: an instant later, Edward had his eyelids glued together.

Suddenly the world shifted from black to yellow as light streamed through Edward's eyelids. The sound of excited talking and commands of attacks filled his ears. While he waited for his eyes to adapt, he focused on what had just happened. But there was no single part to concentrate on – the entire event was a muddled slur, all mixed into one single event.

Latias manipulated me... Latios thinks I'm too weak...Nuria is better than me...

Each point felt like a needle to the heart, despair devastating it with every prick. He felt his closed eyes begin to tear, but fought the impulse to break down. To prove Latios wrong.

He knew there was no chance that he wouldn't tell Nuria about what was going on when they met. He could actually feel his muscles tighten as he felt the harshness of the light fade, urging him to obey the command. Then again, if I just happen to avoid her...

Edward opened his eyes slowly, and found Nuria standing right in front of him, a quizzical look upon her face. Edward nearly had a heart attack.

“Jeez, Eddy, what's up? Why are you standing like that?” Nuria's voice was playful – Edward's heart sank as he realised her euphoria would soon be broken.

“Nice win against the Gym Leader,” he said, remembering what Latios had said. “By the way,” his speech then became hoarse as he tried to prevent himself talking, “there's something I need to show you in the mountain cave.”

Nuria narrowed her eyes, scrutinising Edward's face.

“Are you sure you're okay?” she asked cautiously. Edward shakily nodded his head, all the while screeching warnings in his mind. “What is it you have to show me?” she asked guardedly. Edward choked in response. Nuria raised an eyebrow.

“Is this what's been making you so weird lately? Whatever you found in that cave?”

Edward head nodded mechanically, his teeth gritted. Nuria shrugged and threw a Pokeball: Ralts materialised in a flash of white.

“Ralts, Teleport us to the bottom of the cave, please,” Nuria said politely, not taking her gaze off of Edward's sweating face. No! Edward screamed mentally, causing Ralts to snap her head in Edward's direction. Suddenly Edward knew what to do:

It's a trap! I'm being forced to do this! Do NOT send her down there! She will die if you do! he thought as loud as he could, praying that Ralts would understand. She stood, slack-jawed, for a second, before taking a step away from Nuria, shaking slightly. Nuria furrowed her brow.

“Ralts? Come on, Teleport us already!” Suddenly she looked up to Edward, glaring savagely. “Are you doing something? Stop it, Eddy. Don't you want to show me what's down there?” When she received no answer, she turned on Ralts.

“Teleport us! I command you!” she growled menacingly, but Ralts just started to shiver more and backed away further. Nuria stomped her foot, about to shout when a voice filled all their ears:

“Nice try, boy; there is hope for you yet,” Latios' voice rang, and suddenly Edward was back in the cave. He could see perfectly this time – was Latias doing something? - and Nuria stood defensively, her eyes wide as she took in the immense sight. Edward suddenly felt the bonds that had held him slacken. Too little, too late.

Before either of the Legendaries talked, Edward saw Ralts leap towards Nuria, arms wide in preparation for latching onto her. A millisecond before contact, the psychic-type became enveloped in dark-blue light and was thrown back away from Nuria, slamming hard into granite. From above, her little rock fell onto her lap. She didn't get back up.

“What the hell was that for?” Nuria demanded, strangely defiant in Edward's view, as she recalled Ralts, stone and all. Latios looked smugly at Latias.

“I told you she was fiery,” he crowed, turning his head to appraise Nuria. He nodded, and extended a hand to her forehead.

“No!” Edward shouted, taking a step forward, putting a hand forward to protect her. But it was too late. Latios just tapped Nuria's head, and the next second her eyes steeled, her confusion erased. Edward's arm dropped limply to his side as Nuria turned to him and gave him a brave smile. What just happened?

Latios looked to his sister and nodded, pride exuding from his pores. Latias shrugged resignedly as Edward looked incredulously at Nuria.

“The two of you shall travel together,” Latios said, his voice deep. “The closest Ancient is Regice, north of this island, its home submerged beneath the waves. This will be your opening challenge – Regice is a more logical and straight-thinking Ancient, probably due to its limited activity. Recruit Regice, and then its siblings, and then you will be ready for real challenges. You must find your own paths to Regice's siblings, but I will show you the way to Regice. You two will heal your Pokemon in your regeneration machines, and I will bring you back down here when you finish.”

Before Edward could react the world was bright again, and he heard Nuria shout in pain as her eyes burned just as Edward's did. Instantly his mind ran through the possibilities – anything he could do to save Nuria during this bleak situation. At a loss for anything else, he chose the most readily available option. The moment his eyesight returned (which was way before Nuria, considering he'd became so used to it), Edward ran to a blinking Nuria, sending her sprawling to the ground. She cussed violently, beginning to get up before Edward, in perfect display of his masculinity, sat on her to prevent her rising, desperate to subdue her. Deep down, he knew his plan was illogical and half baked, but he really didn't care.

“What happened?” Edward shouted as Nuria elbowed him in the ribs. He gasped and fell, winded, on his face. Nuria stood over him, breathing slightly heavier than normal. After a few seconds she responded to Edward's question:

“He told me everything, Eddy,” she murmured above him. Suddenly he felt his hair being pulled at the back of his head, his head being lifted up so Nuria cold look him in the face. For the first time he noticed how red and puffy her eyes were. “Why didn't you tell me? We've been friends forever. Couldn't you trust me enough to fill me in on this?” She then let go of his hair, causing his head to bounce on the rock.

“I did it to save you,” he shouted, massaging his forehead. Nuria just snorted.

“Nice sentiment, Eddy, but did it occur to you that I could die anyway if you didn't get my help?” His palm on his forehead, Edward rose and stumbled after Nuria, who was walking pointedly to the healing machine. His mind ran through all the possibilities – anything he could do to keep Nuria safe in this bleak situation. Violence? No. Reasoning? No. Feeling his options run out, he resorted to desperate measures.

“I'll tell your secret!” he called, yet Nuria didn't break stride.

“I think this takes precedence, don't you think?” she called back. Edward gritted his teeth.

“But you'll die!” he roared, and suddenly all went silent. The chatter, the sounds of combat – all silenced. No noise whatsoever. He felt dozens of pairs of eyes lock onto him and Nuria. Still his friend kept walking, until she arrived at the machine.

“There's a chance,” she said nonchalantly, her voice deafening in the silence as she inserted her blue Pokedex and Pokeballs into the machine. Seconds ticked away as the machine hummed, nobody saying a word. Edward was at a loss for what to say. He knew that no bartering or threatening could possibly melt her resolve. He saw her walk back up to him, then past him as she approached the cave entrance.

Just then he realised what he would have to do. He couldn't fight Nuria, he couldn't reason with her, but what he could was join her to keep her safe. Well, as safe as you can be when the world's destruction is imminent.

He ran to the machine, and as he did he heard the chatter start to pick up again as his and Nuria's outbursts became old news. Even the battle picked up right from where it left off. In less than a minute he had healed all of his Pokemon and was racing back to Nuria.

“Look, Nuria,” he said, and this time she turned to look at him, “if there's nothing I can say to change your mind-”

“There isn't,” she said abruptly, turning to the rocky hill again. Edward's hand latched onto hers, causing her to pause momentarily.

“-then I will join you, okay? I will be by your side to protect you, so whatever happens I intend to keep you safe.” They locked eyes and Edward saw the steel in Nuria's eyes, which had been so cold ever since her meeting with Latios, melt slightly, her eyes twinkling as her smile wavered.

“Thankyou, Eddy,” she sad, squeezing his hand in comfort, “but I'm not the one who needs looking after.”

Before he could respond the world was dark again, though his vision was not impaired again.

“How touching,” Latios said sarcastically: instantly, Nuria's hand detached itself from Edward's.

“So,” she said coldly, staring down the blue dragon, all traces of insecurity gone, “when do we leave?”

“Now,” he said. He pushed a straight arm to the side, and instantly a circular section of the wall was pushed back, speeding further and further away until Edward's eyes couldn't make it out. The result was a perfectly-hewn tunnel, completely smooth on the inside.

“Regice, as I have said before, is a more liberal Ancient. It will hear you out and make fair judgement.”

“If it is so liberal,” Edward interjected, “why don't you go?”

As Latios bared his teeth, Latias hovered forward.

“This is your test-run, to give you a taste of encountering other Ancients. And even though Regice is fairly patient, it would fight us viciously if we were to encroach upon its territory. And... its Ice-type moves won't go down well with us.”

Then Nuria did something he wanted to do at that moment but didn't dare to; she snorted.

Latios snapped his head to face her, but she just smiled back sweetly. Baring his fangs, he growled:

“Girl, catch me in one of your storage devices. My sister and I will be left here, buried deep below the rock. Hopefully your storage devices will mask our scents, and the depth of us will mask them further.”

Wordlessly, Nuria chose a random, empty ball from her pocket, took aim, and threw it as hard as possible at the dragon's head. It bounced off his cranium, and the next second the dragon was within the Pokeball as the sphere fell to the ground and began to wobble. After a few seconds it clicked, and the ball re-opened – Latios releasing himself. The blue legend then looked at the ground – instantly a circular depression formed again, for what Edward could only suppose was miles below ground.

Without caring what the dragons did next, Nuria started toward the horizontal tunnel, and without thought Edward followed. Followed her toward the tunnel, in which a creature of mythology was hiding. Where it had stayed put for thousands – perhaps even millions – of years. Just like Latias had said. Hang on...

“Wait,” Edward said just before Latias touched her Pokeball below her, “how did you know that the Regis would stay put if Latios hadn't told you?” Latias shrugged as Latios barked a laugh behind her.

“The Golems and the Lake Trio are inseparable from the land they vowed to guard – it's only natural they would stay.” Before Edward could ask more, the dragons touched their respective Pokeballs and shot inside. The red and white spheres then lifted off the ground, hovered over to the hole, and fell in, the rock sealing up as they fell past the rim.

As the balls inevitably fell further, Edward could detect his vision worsening as the dragons' power left him. Turning just in time to see Nuria step into shadows, he followed her into the the most dangerous place he'd ever been in his entire life.

For, mere metres above in the freezing, dark ocean, a tiny spark of consciousness registered the humans before fizzing out as the killer slept...


Next (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=14961712&postcount=106)

overlordmewtwo
18th July 2012, 9:07 PM
Oh, man. This is an intense chapter.

Latios' personality is rather interesting. It's a total contrast to Latias' personality (which is very much like Edward and Nuria's contrasting personalities; on an unrelated note, if Edward and Nuria were to meet Reshiram and Zekrom, I know who would control which dragon). I love foils in stories.

To be mere meters below the killer... oh, man... good thing the killer is tired. Otherwise, he probably would have jumped on them before they got too much farther.

Keep up the good work!

Rotomknight
18th July 2012, 9:47 PM
Somewhere in there was a foryou, Edward. Ican't find it again but you should corre3ct it.

ChloboShoka
18th July 2012, 10:56 PM
I enjoyed the tense moments that created some thrilling vibes in this chapter. I thought that some of the sentences were cleverly written such as the one where it says more poison than an arbok's fang. It seemed Edward and Nuria were hanging on by the skin of their teeth.

The Great Butler
22nd July 2012, 8:09 AM
Chapter Thirteen
Duped

The battle over, the murderer sensed the area around it, searching for any remaining pieces it had missed in the obliteration process. It knew from past experience that everything must be destroyed to kill a member of this species.

Content that every last piece was destroyed, the killer surveyed its own body for damage. Deflecting all of those blows had reduced a substantial amount of its energy, as did the retaliation attacks of the previous Ancients.

Perhaps rest is necessary, the killer pondered. After a few seconds of deliberation the creature nodded, agreeing with its thought. Rest would be prudent, the murderer confirmed as it began to gently descend to the ocean surface. It closed its eyes and plummeted into the icy blue.

So is the killer perhaps a sea beast or something that came from underwater? It's a curious possibility.


Edward's mind raced as he cowered before the deathly stare, the interrogatory questions still hanging in the air. What do I do, what do I do? he screamed internally. If only Nuria was here, he thought, thinking of her brute strength. Edward pushed weakly in order to dislodge his aggressor, but the grip on the scruff of his neck was too tight, the rough rock-face restricted his manoeuvrability, and -

I find it interesting that Edward mentally calls for Nuria in a time of trouble.


Hang on, did he say sister?

Edward's eyes widened. Wait, surely he doesn't mean-

“Yes, you complete waste of organic material,” the boy hissed with more venom than an Arbok's fang, “I'm her brother. So I repeat, why the hell did my sister let you catch her?”

As the boy's glare raked over him, Edward's mind floundered. Wait... so this is...Latios?... But why's he so surprised to-

The boy suddenly growled and kicked the boulder behind Edward in rage, causing it to fracture, spider-web-thin cracks spreading across the rock.

“You're useless!” he snarled, and suddenly the world was black. Edward fell as the boulder behind him disappeared, causing him to yelp pitifully, his mind full of terror and confusion.

The description here is very vivid. I like it.


Bright, white light blinded Edward, causing him to shriek again. Blind and scared, he could only listen.

“God-dammit Latias, what the hell were you thinking?” came the boy's – or, as Edward realised it should, Latios' – snarl, substantially less icy than Edward had previously experienced.

“Saving our lives, you dimwit. How long do you think hiding will last us? Five, ten years? It didn't do any good for Groudon and Kyogre, did it?”

“That's beside the point!” Latios bellowed, the vibrations of his voice making the earth shake. “Groudon and Kyogre's whereabouts were not exactly well-hidden, were they? Running, hiding... it will last us much longer. Perhaps it will even leave us alone if it can't find us!”

I'm also intrigued by how Latios is the one who wants to hide, when by most usual expectations, Latias would be in that role. This is a good contrast between the two siblings.


“Do you believe that?” Latias demanded, her voice now more lethal than Edward had ever heard. Somehow, he got the feeling that if such anger were directed at him, he'd be wiped from existence. “What chance would we have at that? It's faster than us, stronger at us. What chance do we have at running?”

"Stronger at us?" I think you mean "stronger than us."


“A better chance than handing our LIVES over to this miserable, stupid CREATURE!” Latios yelled, so loud that Edward instantly went deaf at the end of the sentence. Clutching his aching ears, Edward ground his head on the rough, rocky floor, feeling only the coldness of his flesh and buzzing, static-like energy in the air.

What's going on? he thought, too shaken to cry. Why does Latios call me that? Wasn't it him who chose me?

The energy in the room suddenly stopped, replacing static with the unmistakeable atmosphere of tension. Instantly Edward felt his senses return: he heard the ragged inhalations of his breathing and saw-

His heart skipped a beat as he registered what was before him. Ever since he'd laid eyes on her, Edward had associated pure power with Latias. But Latios just blew him away.

He towered over his sibling, the terrible likeness between him and Latias only highlighting the sinister differences. Where pure white adorned Latias, mottled grey blemished Latios; where she shone red, he was blue. Another difference was much more pronounced – Latios' anger gave him a more powerful, dangerous edge over his sister. In human form, Latios' rage was scary. In this form, Edward could feel Latios' abhorrence as though it was a real, physical substance, saturating the air with malevolence. Edward froze, petrified. He just barely noticed that he was in the rocky cavern below Dewford in which he had previously met Latias.

Wow, that's a really vivid picture painted there. Good job, I can see it clearly.


“No, Las,” Latios said with finality, “it's too dangerous. This thing killed beings more powerful than us without exertion. We wouldn't stand a chance, even if we all banded together.” Latios' voice had become calm, reasoning, even. The air started to de-pressurize, though Latios' tough exterior remained unchanged. “I know you want to care for me, but-”

"Las?"


“It's not just about you, Los!” Latias shrieked suddenly, causing her brother to blink. “It's about all the other Ancients, all the other living things. We need to give everything else a chance, too. What would we do if it was just us two and nothing else?”

I don't really like the "Las" and "Los" nicknames.

Latias's compassion and courage, on the other hand, is admirable and I'm enjoying it greatly.


Latios hovered, still as a statue, for a few seconds, the battle raging inside him apparent. Finally he calmed, and he held out his hands.

“Fine, I understand your reasoning. But why him?” the male dragon asked, nodding toward Edward.

“Trust me, he has promise. He has caring, understanding, smarts-”

“But there are others more suited,” Latios stressed, talking over his sister yet again. She bit her lip, trying to find the best way to explain.

“He was the best for miles – it wasn't safe to sense any further,” she murmured, determinedly looking away from Edward. He furrowed his brow. What's going on?

“Really?” Latios half-laughed, “Can you not sense that girl up there? She's got fight in her – she'd never give up. From what you've seen of this one, he's a mess.” It took Edward a few seconds to realise that he was the subject of that final sentence. Suddenly it all came together, and cruel clarity ran through him.

This is about the line where everything begins going off the rails for Edward. Everything he's planned to do is now useless, as Latios shows that he plans to get Nuria involved.

It's also right about here that I realized just how far off the trail from what Edward and Nuria started off their journey doing that these events have come. They could never have seen this situation coming.


“Wait,” he said, his fear of Latios forgotten for a second as he turned to Latias, “you lied to me?” In response, Latias, sagged her head.

What does this mean? Edward thought dimly. Was he really expected to survive this journey? Did Latias really have any faith in him at all?

“Look, Edward,” Latias beseeched to an unresponsive Edward, “I had to lie – I still have faith in you, but I thought that you needed to have faith in yourself.”

I'm not so sure I completely believe Latias right now.


“So,” Edward said dully, his brain working slowly, “everything you said was a lie?” Latias' eyes suddenly widened slightly, as though remembering something.

“No!” Just then she turned her head to Latios. “But can't you sense what's on him? He's been in contact with another. He can be trusted.”

Latios' eyes narrowed as he surveyed Edward with a critical gaze. After a second he cocked his head to one side.

“Yes. But that doesn't make him the best choice. That fiery girl girl up there, though – she'd be more reliable.”

Silence. Unbearable silence. Then:

“Yes,” Latias said sadly, not looking toward Edward.

“Then why not choose her?” Latios asked, confused. Latias shrugged her little arms.

“Her Ralts had already connected with her. To build another connection with her would have killed both of them. I rationalised that her friend was a good choice both because of his connection with her and his own ingenuity. Besides, she may be too fiery – she may have refused or been too rash.”

I like the logic progression here. Latias is clearly approaching this with a well-thought-out, rational thought process, which speaks well for her in such a dangerous situation as this is.


Edward's muddled mind finally made the connection. His eyes widened, his jaw went slack, his mind raced from the shock. With a look of complete devastation at Latias, he rasped in a whispered shriek:

“You... chose...Nuria?”

I do find it hard to believe that it took Edward this long to realize that Latios and Latias were talking about Nuria. I figured it out right away, but maybe he can be excused because of the stressful situation he's under right now.


Latios fixed Latias with a deadly gaze.

“So, basically, you settled for him? Why didn't you just kill the Ralts? But,” he spoke louder as Latias opened her mouth to protest, “I see your point. You believe that she is too rash, and I believe that he is too passive. Perhaps they would work better together?

Latias' eyes lit up. “So, you believe that my plan would be successful? Do you finally concede that all of us fighting will be the only way to survive?”

“No, I believe that this is our best chance, as you said. An immensely thin chance at that. But the probability of us surviving would be greater. However, I do have one condition if I am to allow this plan,” he said, looking his sister in the eyes. “If they go on this journey, you and I will stay here, hidden.”

“And if I refuse?” Latias said, voice dangerously low. Now it was Latios' turn to shrug.

“I'll kill him and the girl,” he said lightly. Latias sagged her head in defeat. “Good,” murmured Latios, looking over to a dumbfounded Edward. “Now, you shall go up and bring your friend down here.”

In contrast to Latias, Latios is behaving in an extremely emotional, knee-jerk manner. He's clearly a loose cannon, especially compared to his sister. Through this contrast, you have created an entertaining interaction between them both.



Latias manipulated me... Latios thinks I'm too weak...Nuria is better than me...

Each point felt like a needle to the heart, despair devastating it with every prick. He felt his closed eyes begin to tear, but fought the impulse to break down. To prove Latios wrong.

He knew there was no chance that he wouldn't tell Nuria about what was going on when they met. He could actually feel his muscles tighten as he felt the harshness of the light fade, urging him to obey the command. Then again, if I just happen to avoid her...

Of course, none of this could possibly work, because Latios would know and be able to force them to interact.


Edward opened his eyes slowly, and found Nuria standing right in front of him, a quizzical look upon her face. Edward nearly had a heart attack.

“Jeez, Eddy, what's up? Why are you standing like that?” Nuria's voice was playful – Edward's heart sank as he realised her euphoria would soon be broken.

That actually made me choke up a little. He's right - this is the end of Nuria's even somewhat normal life.


“Nice win against the Gym Leader,” he said, remembering what Latios had said. “By the way,” his speech then became hoarse as he tried to prevent himself talking, “there's something I need to show you in the mountain cave.”

Nuria narrowed her eyes, scrutinising Edward's face.

“Are you sure you're okay?” she asked cautiously. Edward shakily nodded his head, all the while screeching warnings in his mind. “What is it you have to show me?” she asked guardedly. Edward choked in response. Nuria raised an eyebrow.

“Is this what's been making you so weird lately? Whatever you found in that cave?”

Edward head nodded mechanically, his teeth gritted. Nuria shrugged and threw a Pokeball: Ralts materialised in a flash of white.

“Ralts, Teleport us to the bottom of the cave, please,” Nuria said politely, not taking her gaze off of Edward's sweating face. No! Edward screamed mentally, causing Ralts to snap her head in Edward's direction. Suddenly Edward knew what to do:

It's a trap! I'm being forced to do this! Do NOT send her down there! She will die if you do! he thought as loud as he could, praying that Ralts would understand. She stood, slack-jawed, for a second, before taking a step away from Nuria, shaking slightly. Nuria furrowed her brow.

“Ralts? Come on, Teleport us already!” Suddenly she looked up to Edward, glaring savagely. “Are you doing something? Stop it, Eddy. Don't you want to show me what's down there?” When she received no answer, she turned on Ralts.

“Teleport us! I command you!” she growled menacingly, but Ralts just started to shiver more and backed away further. Nuria stomped her foot, about to shout when a voice filled all their ears:

“Nice try, boy; there is hope for you yet,” Latios' voice rang, and suddenly Edward was back in the cave. He could see perfectly this time – was Latias doing something? - and Nuria stood defensively, her eyes wide as she took in the immense sight. Edward suddenly felt the bonds that had held him slacken. Too little, too late.

Edward really should have realized that Latios would be able to read his mind too. He's had it happen enough already.


Before either of the Legendaries talked, Edward saw Ralts leap towards Nuria, arms wide in preparation for latching onto her. A millisecond before contact, the psychic-type became enveloped in dark-blue light and was thrown back away from Nuria, slamming hard into granite. From above, her little rock fell onto her lap. She didn't get back up.

“What the hell was that for?” Nuria demanded, strangely defiant in Edward's view, as she recalled Ralts, stone and all. Latios looked smugly at Latias.

“I told you she was fiery,” he crowed, turning his head to appraise Nuria. He nodded, and extended a hand to her forehead.

“No!” Edward shouted, taking a step forward, putting a hand forward to protect her. But it was too late. Latios just tapped Nuria's head, and the next second her eyes steeled, her confusion erased. Edward's arm dropped limply to his side as Nuria turned to him and gave him a brave smile. What just happened?

Latios looked to his sister and nodded, pride exuding from his pores. Latias shrugged resignedly as Edward looked incredulously at Nuria.

“The two of you shall travel together,” Latios said, his voice deep. “The closest Ancient is Regice, north of this island, its home submerged beneath the waves. This will be your opening challenge – Regice is a more logical and straight-thinking Ancient, probably due to its limited activity. Recruit Regice, and then its siblings, and then you will be ready for real challenges. You must find your own paths to Regice's siblings, but I will show you the way to Regice. You two will heal your Pokemon in your regeneration machines, and I will bring you back down here when you finish.”

It's certainly unique to see the protagonists being sent off on their journey by a Pokemon instead of a human, I'll say that. I also think I am going to be very entertained by how Nuria and Edward interact as the crisis deepens.


Before Edward could react the world was bright again, and he heard Nuria shout in pain as her eyes burned just as Edward's did. Instantly his mind ran through the possibilities – anything he could do to save Nuria during this bleak situation. At a loss for anything else, he chose the most readily available option. The moment his eyesight returned (which was way before Nuria, considering he'd became so used to it), Edward ran to a blinking Nuria, sending her sprawling to the ground. She cussed violently, beginning to get up before Edward, in perfect display of his masculinity, sat on her to prevent her rising, desperate to subdue her. Deep down, he knew his plan was illogical and half baked, but he really didn't care.

“What happened?” Edward shouted as Nuria elbowed him in the ribs. He gasped and fell, winded, on his face. Nuria stood over him, breathing slightly heavier than normal. After a few seconds she responded to Edward's question:

“He told me everything, Eddy,” she murmured above him. Suddenly he felt his hair being pulled at the back of his head, his head being lifted up so Nuria cold look him in the face. For the first time he noticed how red and puffy her eyes were. “Why didn't you tell me? We've been friends forever. Couldn't you trust me enough to fill me in on this?” She then let go of his hair, causing his head to bounce on the rock.

“I did it to save you,” he shouted, massaging his forehead. Nuria just snorted.

“Nice sentiment, Eddy, but did it occur to you that I could die anyway if you didn't get my help?” His palm on his forehead, Edward rose and stumbled after Nuria, who was walking pointedly to the healing machine. His mind ran through all the possibilities – anything he could do to keep Nuria safe in this bleak situation. Violence? No. Reasoning? No. Feeling his options run out, he resorted to desperate measures.

There's the interaction I wanted to see already. I'm very encouraged by that.


“I'll tell your secret!” he called, yet Nuria didn't break stride.

“I think this takes precedence, don't you think?” she called back. Edward gritted his teeth.

Her secret? I wonder what it is. I don't think it's been mentioned already.


“But you'll die!” he roared, and suddenly all went silent. The chatter, the sounds of combat – all silenced. No noise whatsoever. He felt dozens of pairs of eyes lock onto him and Nuria. Still his friend kept walking, until she arrived at the machine.

“There's a chance,” she said nonchalantly, her voice deafening in the silence as she inserted her blue Pokedex and Pokeballs into the machine. Seconds ticked away as the machine hummed, nobody saying a word. Edward was at a loss for what to say. He knew that no bartering or threatening could possibly melt her resolve. He saw her walk back up to him, then past him as she approached the cave entrance.

Just then he realised what he would have to do. He couldn't fight Nuria, he couldn't reason with her, but what he could was join her to keep her safe. Well, as safe as you can be when the world's destruction is imminent.

He ran to the machine, and as he did he heard the chatter start to pick up again as his and Nuria's outbursts became old news. Even the battle picked up right from where it left off. In less than a minute he had healed all of his Pokemon and was racing back to Nuria.

“Look, Nuria,” he said, and this time she turned to look at him, “if there's nothing I can say to change your mind-”

“There isn't,” she said abruptly, turning to the rocky hill again. Edward's hand latched onto hers, causing her to pause momentarily.

“-then I will join you, okay? I will be by your side to protect you, so whatever happens I intend to keep you safe.” They locked eyes and Edward saw the steel in Nuria's eyes, which had been so cold ever since her meeting with Latios, melt slightly, her eyes twinkling as her smile wavered.

“Thankyou, Eddy,” she sad, squeezing his hand in comfort, “but I'm not the one who needs looking after.”

Like I said, these two have some really great interactions. I think you're at your best when they're interacting.

I think the story is taking a great turn with this chapter. So far, a lot of time has been dedicated to establishing Edward, Nuria, Latias, Latios and the mission Edward and Nuria must go on to save the world, but now, we see that the action is finally starting. I'm excited for it, and I'm optimistic that the story will continue getting better from here.

Scaldaver
23rd July 2012, 12:26 AM
^*Yay, 100th post!*


I'm also intrigued by how Latios is the one who wants to hide, when by most usual expectations, Latias would be in that role. This is a good contrast between the two siblings.

I don't follow: how so? If it's a movie thing, I haven't seen the one with them in (to my torment).


"Stronger at us?" I think you mean "stronger than us."

Corrected.


I don't really like the "Las" and "Los" nicknames.

I see what you mean, it does seem a bit... off. But keep in mind that the shortened pet-name is only the translation of what they call each other.



That actually made me choke up a little. He's right - this is the end of Nuria's even somewhat normal life.

Wow - I'm obviously much deeper than I thought. Yay for me!



Her secret? I wonder what it is. I don't think it's been mentioned already.

I was referring to the fact she ran away from home, though it does seem a bit vague now...



I think the story is taking a great turn with this chapter. So far, a lot of time has been dedicated to establishing Edward, Nuria, Latias, Latios and the mission Edward and Nuria must go on to save the world, but now, we see that the action is finally starting. I'm excited for it, and I'm optimistic that the story will continue getting better from here.

Thanks so much for that, I hope I'll live up to these expectations (no pressure, right?)

Thankyou C.Gholy and Overlord Mewtwo for your comments as well, I really enjoy reading them! Remember though, anyone who reads this, that I'd like lots of criticism too so I can get better.

Rotomknight, I can't find the bit you're referring to, where is it?

The Great Butler
26th July 2012, 9:45 AM
I don't follow: how so? If it's a movie thing, I haven't seen the one with them in (to my torment).


Well, that is true, but in a more general way, Latios would logically be seen as the "big brother" type who is the protector. Now, I don't agree with sticking to that kind of stereotype, so I applaud you for breaking it.

Sid87
26th July 2012, 3:52 PM
Legend's End is one of the stories around here that I kept telling myself I was going to start reading when I got time. Well I've some time nowadays, and I figured I would start with it.

Prologue/Chapter 1

I have no basis for it, but is the creature at the beginning Groudon? I guess it could be any cave dwelling legendary, but part of me is just convinced it is Groudon. I'm sure I'll find out later.

I like the idea of mixing up the regional starters (at least, putting Chikorita in with Birch's other regular starters). What was the rationale for it? Is there a reason the Treeckos are absent? Will the fact that it is a Chikorita be important? I'm curious to see what the answers to these questions will be. It seems like a mundane detail, but it's really piqued me.

Nuria is kind of a tomboy, right? What with snatching the blue Pokedex, which I'm sure is generally thought to be the "boy's" version. And nuria...that's an odd name. Where did you get it, if I may ask?

I enjoyed the earnestness of Mudkip, sitting there and begging to be picked. It was cute.

I'm always a little wary of Pokemon "speaking", but I can probably get around that. :) Either way, it's a good introduction, and I look forward to continuing on!


Chapter 2


It exhaled one final time. Closed its eyes. And died.

Might just be me, but I think that might read better as one sentence with commas. I get you are going to the dramatic effect, but it feels jerky to me.


“What? You said it yourself – we just got pokemon. Why shouldn't I be excited? More to the point, why aren't you?”

I'm not sure how old Edward and Nuria are. I guess I just assumed they were ~10 years old, but I could be wrong. Anyway, children are REALLY hard to write well, so be careful when writing their feelings and dialogue. I don't see a ten year old really saying "More to the point..." It just doesn't seem natural. But then, I could be way off on their ages, too. (I ended up finding out they are 13 a few lines later. Still a tough age to get a handle on, so I respect your decision to work with characters that young).

You actually mention pokemon having "levels" of growth, which is unusual. I don't think I've seen that in too many stories before. I wonder how you'll make that work? Is there a process a pokemon goes through when it advances a level? Is it a visual change (obviously not an evolution, but do they get bigger, more defined, visibly older)? I'm curious to see how that could work, as I'm not sure I've ever read a fic that used levels before.

I like Chikorita calling out Nuria for her impetuousness. It's good to see the two starters have such stark personality differences. Even though Chikorita is only level 6, it seems to think it is worldly and experienced and is already pretty jaded. I imagine Chikorita and Nuria both have a LOT to learn.

I really dig Mudkip. He's a little ball of energy, isn't he?

And "The Shift", eh? Curious! Nice tease there by just letting that hang in the air. I wonder what it is. But then you explain it in the very next paragraph. I almost wish you'd have let that linger a while and answered what it was maybe a chapter or two later. But que sera sera.


Mudkip had literally flown into his chest.

i'm assuming that "literally" is an accident, right? Unless this Mudkip can actually FLY.

Oh, and I thought the image of the smaller Zigzagoon licking the injuries of the larger one was adorable and realistic.


CHAPTER 3

I'm curious as to whom (if anyone) the narration is attached to in the brief opening scene. It's just the use of the word "murderer"; that's intriguing. There doesn't SEEM to be anyone there than, well, the murderer, and it seems odd for someone to refer to themselves as that (Considering they just defeated a monster, you might think they'd refer to themselves as "The victor"). But then again, this "murderer" seems saddened by what it had to do. More questions abound! :)


The silence was deafening.

I think that line is a bit of a cliche. Unless you are going to expand on the idea of the silence being deafening somehow, I'd avoid just saying it like that.


She took off forward. He caught up with her soon enough. The atmosphere was tense. Something was off. He decided to break the silence.

That...is a LOT of short, simple sentences back-to-back. It read like little steps--kinda herky-jerky. I would have added some different punctuation in there and combined some of those sentences so they read a little better.


Edward nodded. He remembered being taught the Capture Rules when he was really young. Some were basic, like 'Don't catch another trainer's Pokemon', whilst others were more loose and specific at the same time. For a trainer to begin training a Pokemon, the trainer must have the Pokemon's consent. The consent could be asked for before or after capture, but if it was asked after capture and the Pokemon refused, by law the trainer must release it.

That's a really interesting notion. Certainly not something I'd ever thought of before. It certainly covers up a lot "real life" comparisons to dog-fighting or anything like that. Very creative thinking!

Another thing I thought was odd, along with the use of actual leveling up, is the mention of Swampert being "four times" weak against grass. You are following a lot of video game conventions here. Any particular reason for that? Not that I mind--those games are why any of us are even here--but it just seems a bit weird. I don't tend to think "That man has a gun, and I am 4x weak to bullets!". :)

I see Dragonfree has been helping with your corrections and grammar, so I've been leaving those alone as I get through your chapters. You do require some work in those regards, but that's okay; that stuff comes with time and practice. I would definitely focus on not getting too attached to short, simple, declarative sentences, though. You use a LOT of those, and they tend to be choppy to read.

The death of Groudon was pretty powerful. You fell into some cliches with people gasping "It can't be!" and "Impossible!". I'll be honest, outside of fiction, I don't think I've ever heard anyone actually say "It can't be!". :) It seems like a generic kind of line. Make sure your dialogue sounds authentic to the ear. Try to picture your friends or peers saying the things that characters in your story say to see if it seems natural. But yes...the death of Groudon was written well. And now the "murderer" seems to be going after Kyogre next? Hmmm.


CHAPTER 4

There's "the murderer" again. I wonder what the massive power above it was? Rayquaza? I guess I'll find out later!


Could they still go on? With such rainfall, floods were bound to follow. Would it be safe to continue?

Edward sat up and shook his head, attempting to expel the thoughts from his head. No use thinking about all that now. It was his second day of trainerdom. He grinned at the thought, but wasn't as enthusiastic as the previous day.

It seems odd to me that Edward RECOGNIZES the peril, but then just discounts it and grins at the thought of being a trainer. I guess a 13 year old might not have the scope or world view to think that well past his own personal experiences, though, so it might work all right here.

The idea of people using pokemon such as Abra to abduct children is...terrifying. What a frightening flavor of the real world to add into your story.

I guess this chapter answers my question about leveling up. New question: How does the pokedex receive this information?

I laughed that the pink pokedex has a female voice. What a nice touch.

I like that, for all your adherence to video game conventions, you let the Mud-Slap realistic get the Ninjask. Your battles have been handled pretty well thus far, and I have enjoyed visualizing them.


Overall, it's not bad so far. I have some good questions that I, as a reader, want answers to (but in a good way that keeps me wanting to read). I pointed out the things I think you could work on (avoiding cliches, not sticking so much to short sentences, making the characters seem realistic), but it's not a bad story. Keep at it! :)

Deadly.Braviary
26th July 2012, 5:14 PM
Wow, this is pretty good! I finished all the chapters in just over an hour, I think... can you add me to the PM list? Thanks.

Scaldaver
26th July 2012, 5:37 PM
TGBB: Ah, I see what you meant. My logic for that was that they were so old that they were equals.

Sid87: thanks for the lengthy review - you're right, I do use short sentences often (which is my amaturish way of raising the tension :P)
About the four-times weakness thing: in my mind Pokemon have been categorised into types, and, like us, people have noticed some types are good against others (doubly good) and others are even better (doubly doubly good), so people would refer to it as four-times as effective. I've half a mind to actually bring up the fact that there are Pokemon games in the Pokemon world, but I'll have to wait for the right opportunity.

You're right with the cliched 'it can't be' , I said it in my head and I realised hoe cliched it really was (I hadn't thought about it before).

Scaldaver
12th August 2012, 7:47 PM
Well, after long, long, long last the next chapter is up. Sorry for the wait, and I'm afraid there'll be another long one while I'm on a two week holiday to Portugal, so no writing for a while. Enjoy!

Chapter 14
Regice

The tunnel seemed to go on forever, an endless seam of darkness in the rock. Edward's hands were placed on the walls at all times, keeping him steady whenever he kicked Nuria in the back of the leg or stood on her heel, and therefore all the times she kicked back.

They walked for what could have been miles in complete silence, Edward consumed by thoughts of dread and trying to keep his breathing under control. He didn't feel as scared as before: maybe it was the fact that Nuria was with him, perhaps because he knew that it couldn't get any worse, or maybe he was in some form of shock, like a car-crash survivor.

After maybe half an hour, Edward found his arms wrapped around his chest: Why's it so cold?

Then it struck him: Oh, Regice! How did I not realise that before? He found himself thinking back to anything he might have seen or heard that would help him visualize Regice. He bit his lip. Why couldn't he remember? Had he not had stories of legends read to him by his parents as a bed-time story when he was but a boy? Hadn't he read those books himself as he matured? He knew Regice was a guardian of... something, but apart from that, nothing. Was there no picture of Regice? Then again, if Regice had been down here all this time, how would a picture get taken? the rational part of his mind responded.

After perhaps another half an hour, Edward's teeth were chattering loudly, his arms folded up his shirt to conserve heat. He could hear Nuria breathing shakily in front of him, and judging by her dimly lit outline-

Edward suddenly jolted when he realised he could just about see Nuria and the walls of the cave, dimly illuminated by a light blue. His eyes must have become accustomed so slowly that he hadn't noticed it. Craning his head over Nuria's shoulder, he could see a far-off pin-prick of pale blue light.

“N-N-Nuria,” he stammered through chattering teeth, “Wh-h-h-h-hat is that?”

There was a long pause.

“Nu-Nuria?” he asked again, and once again there was no answer. Edward just shut up and kept on walking.

After another long silence, marred only by the rough scraping of shoes, Nuria finally spoke.

“How d-do we f-f-f-fight it?” Nuria said, teeth chattering. Too cold to speak, Edward just shrugged. Then he realised that must have been what Nuria had done earlier. Clearing his throat, he spoke up:

“I dunno... Zubat could confuse it.”

Another silence.

“D-d-do you really th-think that'll work?” she asked sceptically.

“I... dunno...” Edward repeated, his mind working. If a fight were to start, what could his Pokemon do? Not even Ralts could do anything in the presence of Latios. So... against Regice? Ice type moves would knock out both Nincada and Zubat... kill, even...

Edward stopped moving. What am I doing? He and his Pokemon could easily die... even though Latias said that they went easy on Pokemon... but humans? How would they be able to escape an attack if Regice wasn't too friendly?

“N-Nuria, will Ralts save us if,” he struggled for the right words, “ if things go wrong?”

Another silence, albeit much heavier.

“Depends,” she said monotonously, “i-if Regice l-l-l-lets her.”

Edward nodded shakily. He knew Regice might just freeze her or something, but hoped for at least some guarantee that something could be done.

As they continued Edward consciously made out the change in light intensity; soon the tube he and Nuria were in was illuminated brightly by an icy blue, and the air was unbelievably freezing. Both he and Nuria were shivering violently; they now each had an arm around each other in an attempt to conserve body heat. What had once been a whitey -blue speck was now a large, sharp pale blue beacon, emanating pure chill.

“Th-th-th-th-this i-i-is s-s-s-s-s-stup-p-p-id,” Nuria chattered. “Ed-d-d-dy, send out Mudki-i-i-ip.” With a numb, shivering arm he sent out Mudkip, too cold to argue. Mukip materialised and was it was instantly obvious that the cold didn't affect him much. There was something else too, he had his head cocked to the side, as though listening to some far-off voice.

“M-m-mudki-i-i-ip, use a g-g-gentle Wat-t-t-er G-gun on us,” Nuria said, her teeth clacking. In his distracted state, Mudkip didn't even recognise the command as Nuria, but opened fired water all the same.

Edward opened his mouth to protest, but got a mouth full of body-temperature water for all his troubles. He felt the water blast pounding all over him, instantly warming him up slightly– he was still cold, but not as much.

“Good one,” Edward said, no longer shivering. “Thanks, Mudkip,” he said to his Pokemon, but the mud-fish didn't reply, still as though deep in thought. Well, at least he isn't depressed any more, he thought as he recalled Mudkip. The next moment Nuria had carried on walking, Edward following behind, dripping wet. Every now and then the cold would return and nearly freeze their clothes, but each time Edward would simply ask an increasingly distracted Mudkip to use a Water Gun attack, drenching both of the humans and warming them up slightly.

As the light became more intense, so did the air pressure; several times Edward felt his ears pop. He'd been around enough Legendaries to know he was approaching one.

“What do we say to it?” Edward asked suddenly, cocking his head to the side. Of course, he'd been thinking about how to battle, but wouldn't he have to convince the ice monster using words as well?

“How about the truth?” Nuria suggested, not looking up or looking vaguely interested. Edward shrugged, thinking of how the truth would be delivered exactly.

Hello, Mr. Ice monster, we sort of need you to become part of a suicidal mission to kill something that has destroyed countless planets like this thousands of times over. Are you fine with that?

Somehow, he didn't think words could cut it.

As they approached the end of the tunnel, it became apparent that the shining was not an exit, but merely a transition of tunnels. Freezing cold, even though he'd been watered mere seconds ago, Edward could see the sudden transition from shiny grey to clear, dazzling white crystal. No, not crystal, he realized, ice.

He and Nuria stood, side by side, on the threshold of the ice tunnel, each unsure if it would be safe to go further. Edward's shivers were so powerful he had to lean against the rock for support to stand up, and he'd brought the sodden scruff of his shirt up to his neck to warm him slightly – to no avail. The water that had previously kept him warmer now froze to his clothing, causing his skin to burn from the sheer absence of heat.

Wordlessly, Nuria was the first to step forward, and the second she did her limbs fell to her side; she whirled around, her features happier than Edward could have thought possible, and said:

“Eddy, come on – it's warm”

Edward narrowed his eyes. Was this the final stage of hypothermia - delusion?

“M-m-m-mayb-b-be w-w-we shhhhhhould come back with w-w-warmer c-c-clothes?” he stuttered, his teeth clattering together so violently he barely managed to string together a coherent sentence. In response, Nuria simply rolled her eyes and suddenly pulled Edward over to her, across the boundary of the rock.

The second he stumbled in, he saw what Nuria meant. The cold was gone, replaced by... he couldn't say if it was hot or not, just... normal. The air felt as though it carried no temperature, nothing to heat or cool the teens. As well has this, he realised he was completely steady, as though the ice was simply not slippery.

Edward found himself grinning, in spite of the scenario. He felt... comfortable, more comfortable than he thought was possible at this time. Even his nerves had settled. Which led him to wonder, why?

Was it possible that, now they were in its domain, Regice could shield them from the cold? But that would mean it knows we're here, Edward realised, turning suddenly to see how far the ice-tunnel went on for. He couldn't see an end.

“So, what do we do?” Nuria asked, perked up considerably, as she began to walk forward, Edward following. Edward, pondering on his last thought, shrugged. “So, when we meet Regice, we, what, explain what's going on first? Will we have to challenge it to prove our worth? Or will it just attack us on sight?”

“No,” Edward said carefully in response to the last question, “I think we'd be dead if it wanted us dead. I mean, this is basically its territory, right?”

“Yeah, I suppose so,” Nuria mumbled. She folded her arms behind her head. “So, if we have to fight, what tactics do we use?”

Edward blinked: what could be effective? Would his Pokemon's attacks actually do anything? Suddenly he jumped: My Pokemon!

What about Mudkip, Zubat and Nincada? Wouldn't it be fair to know what's going on? After all, there was always a chance... No, don't think that! Latias had said that Legendaries went easy on other Pokemon...But it is a Legendary after all... what if it forgets to be weak?

But should they know? That would be the nice thing... even sensible in case they freeze up during battle.

“Hey, Nuria, do you reckon we should tell our Pokemon about... you know?” Edward asked.

“Why worry them?” she replied, not breaking stride.

“But, shouldn't they be mentally prepared?”

Nuria snorted: “Eddy, you do things your way, and I'll do things my way. Shellder will just flop around, Ralts will go all quiet and Bayleef won't talk to me. I think it's best we focus on what to say and how we should battle, personally.”

Edward shook his head. How could she think that?

“Well, how about you wait while I talk to my Pokemon, okay?” he suggested. Nuria stopped, sighing.

“Sure,” she moaned. Edward smiled as he drew three filled Pokeballs from his pocket: a few seconds later, Mudkip and Nincada stood before him, all looking in wonder at the glacial tube around them, Zubat flapping around nervously, oblivious to his surroundings.

“Um, guys, I have an announcement,” Edward said, his voice solemn and heavy with guilt. If something happens... He shook his head. They'd be fine. Before he continued, however, he noticed a sudden change come over his Pokemon, each of their faces changing as some sort of understanding dawned on them.

Nincada stood stock-still, shivering erratically, despite the absence of cold. Zubat suddenly shrieked, beating his wings furiously, as he darted around the air, shouting: “Retreat, retreat, retreat!”, all the whilst Mudkip's eyes lit up as though possessed by wonder.

Edward wasn't sure which freaked him out the most.

Zubat suddenly flew an inch in front of Edward's face, breathing heavily.

“Master, we must flee now! There is a monster in yonder cavern – it would kill us for sure! We must run, flee, retreat, fly!”

“Zubat,” Edward said quickly as the Zubat finally drew breath, “relax, do not panic. I'll explain what's going on.”

Slowly but steadily, the Zubat's wings began to calm, though the bat had begun to hyperventilate. I'd better be quick, Edward thought.

“Well, in short, there's a... murderer,”Let's leave it at that, “which is killing Legendary Pokemon,” (each of the Pokemon gasped), “so Latias and...Latios have chosen us to help by convincing each Legendary to make a stand.”

Mudkip and Nincada's eyes bulged. If Zubat had any, Edward was sure they would have too.

“I knew I sensed something! Will we battle them?” Mudkip asked, excitement shaking his voice. Okay, not the reaction I was expecting.

“Well, yes, probably,” Edward said. Instantly Zubat was airborne, screaming obscenities about how bad an idea this was, Nincada's eyes screamed of pure horror and Mudkip began to jump slightly, grinning maniacally.

“Zubat, stop!” Edward shouted over the screeches of the erratic bat. “Latias told us that you would all be safe, that Legendary Pokemon do not seriously harm regular Pokemon. So I'm just telling you that you'll be safe, no matter what, okay? Even if push comes to shove, Nuria's Ralts will save us. I just wanted to make sure that you're aware of what's going on in case we need to battle Regice. Is everyone okay with that?”

Edward suddenly noticed that Mudkip's eyes were glued shut, his body bouncing slightly as though he was trying his best to control his energy. Suddenly he shot his eyes open, excitement and determination like a flare in his face:

“I can't wait!” he barked happily, almost giddy. “I'll beat that Regice all by myself! It might even be impressed! I might even evolve! Then I'll be the most powerful Pokemon EVER!”

Edward smiled weakly at the mud fish as Nuria began to laugh. Leaving Mudkip to his dreams of awesomeness, Edward turned to Nincada. It didn't move.

“Nincada?” Edward asked, concern in his voice. “Are you all right?”

“The cold,” the insect rasped is hoarse whisper, “the ice. It burns me. Please, master, go back, don't make me go to the frozen place.”

Edward took a second to process what Nincada was saying. Then it dawned on him. When the Ice Punch landed on Nincada... when he became encased in the ice... Nincada's look of horror... Nincada wasn't just weak to ice types, Edward realised, ice itself scared him witless.

Before he could speak, Nuria interjected: “Wait, so just because you're afraid of a little frozen water you're going to wuss out altogether?”

Edward did his best to shoot daggers at Nuria, but she just shrugged. Turning to his insect Pokemon, he kneeled down and placed a hand on his head.

“Nincada, if you really don't want to come, I won't make you, but it will be a lot harder without your Digging, do you understand?”

Nincada didn't reply, although its shaking began to calm slightly. Nuria tutted behind him, but Edward simply ignored her.

He then turned to Zubat, who was lying on his stomach, his twin tails too frail to allow him to stand.

“Master, if it is thine wish, I would be honoured to do it. Prithee, however, I have two questions: how are we to fight such a great creature, and what will happen when - if - we fail our endeavour?”

After a few seconds of thinking, Edward replied:

“We'll improvise when battling and I've already got some idea, but what do you mean with the other question?”

“I mean, if we were to lose the battle, what would be done?”

“As I said, Ralts would Teleport us all out of there, okay?” he said, smiling with all the courage he could muster. As long as she doesn't get knocked out first or Regice doesn't let us leave, he said internally, fear gripping his heart yet again. He found himself beginning to panic again. It could kill us, it could kill us.

From behind him, Edward felt Nuria place a comforting hand on his shoulder. He relaxed only slightly, his breathing still very quick. This will be the only chance we have to survive. I shouldn't fear death any more. But the fear was impossible to eradicate; he only suppressed it. Standing, he recalled Zubat and Mudkip and went over to the paralysed Nincada. Holding him gently, Edward picked up the insect and carried him over to the rock a few metres away.

“Are you sure you can't come?” Edward asked tentatively. Nincada didn't reply, but started to burrow into the rock, then covered itself with the pebbles. Edward sighed, rose, and walked back over to Nuria.

“Done yet? That was a waste of time – now we just have one Pokemon down.”

Edward ground his teeth.

“Nuria, you do things your way, and I'll do things my way, okay?” he said venomously. Nuria shrugged and began to walk.

After a few minutes Edward found himself strategising absent-mindedly: there were no type advantages against Regice between him and Nuria... would Zubat's Supersonic work? Between them there were two type disadvantages... speaking of which...

“Will Bayleef fight for us?” Edward asked over to Nuria. She wavered her hand, unsure. “What?” Edward asked.

“Probably,” she said optimistically. Edward sighed.

“Well, what moves does your Shellder know?” he asked.

“Tackle, Withdraw, Supersonic, Icicle Spear, Protect, Leer and Clamp,” she said slowly. Edward's eyebrows shot up.

“Whoa. What level is this thing, again?”

“Only level nine – I guess both his parents were high-ish level Shellders. You know how that works, right?”

Edward realised he did know, except he'd just learned about it so long ago that he'd forgotten. It was that if a Pokemon's parents had the same moves that the offspring could learn, the child could learn it upon birth. Therefore, both of Shellders parents were strong enough to learn all the moves it knows now. He guessed that he'd forgotten this just because... because none of my Pokemon have any special moves... The thought annoyed him more than it should have, leading him to wonder why this was. Well, he knew starters were bred specifically so they did not have over-powered moves, but apart from Mudkip and Bayleef, he had no idea; he stored the question in his mind for further enquiry later, right next to the question about how Pokemon even learn moves in the first place.

“Yeah, I suppose,” he said, his mind beginning to strategise without his permission again. Shellder could take an attack or two with Protect and Withdraw, and Leer could weaken it somewhat... but once again, would that even work? Would scary eyes weaken such a powerful being?

The air pressure was still building, he realised it was a matter of time before they would encounter it. His heart began race; he felt as though he was about to throw up. He felt so unsure, so worried, so panicked.

And suddenly they were there.

Edward's gaze shot upwards when he suddenly realised he was in a giant cavern of white, so similar in colour to the tunnel he simply hadn't noticed the transition. Huge, needle-sharp stalactites pointed down on the humans. Even though he knew they must have been there for thousands of years, Edward had a feeling they could fall and skewer him and his friend in a second if Regice so chose.

Edward's head snapped forward at the thought, searching for the Legendary Pokemon. But before his eyes he could only make out the beautiful, glittering dome-like cavern; the wall sparkling like an uncut diamond and had the same-shaped irregular formations of various shades of light blue and white. The floor twinkled as though layered with a fine sheet of snow. But he could make out no visible Pokemon, Legendary or otherwise.

Still, he couldn't shake the feeling that he was looking at something... he simply felt drawn to looking into a certain space in the middle of the chamber, the space that pure chill seemed to emanate from.

“Greetings,” said a voice pleasantly. Its tone was completely at odds with its cold, dry voice which one would associate with a serial killer. Edward's eyes widened as he tried to place the source of the noise, but still saw glittering white. He saw Nuria searching by him, but to no avail.

“Do not panic,” said the voice again, calm and steady, and still from nowhere, “I stand before you, merely camouflaged into my surroundings. Can you see me now?”

Edward caught a small moving crystal, and instantly his eyes latched onto the bigger creature.

Its pale, bluey-white, pointed, elongated hexagonal arm ended in three miniature, hexagonal crystals, similar to the arm itself. The body was simply a longer, thicker crystal, otherwise identical to the arm. Behind the Pokemon's body were four more crystals in two rows, extended pointedly like short, spindly wings. Looking closer, Edward could roughly make out a plus sign on the body made out of yellow circles – three up, five across – on the edge on the two central crystal faces. It stood completely still, its finely-pointed legs balancing the creature perfectly. Edward was under the impression that the Legendary hadn't ever moved.

He also couldn't help think how... lacklustre the Pokemon's appearance was. There was no doubt in his mind that this was in fact Regice, but he had expected so much more. There were none of Latios' menace, none of Latias' brilliant red feathers... just ice.

That wasn't to say he couldn't feel its power; it was simply a different power to that of the dragons. This legend felt far more... durable. He had the impression that it would still be standing even if a nuclear bomb detonated right next to it. Still standing, looking forward into some far-off distance that only it could see...

“So, you have something to ask of me,” it said politely. It paused, expectancy ripe in the air.

Edward exchanged a confused glance with Nuria: this isn't going the way I pictured it. His muscles were tense, ready for battle at any second. Slowly and cautiously, Nuria spread her hands.

“Well, um, Sir, well, Latios sent us to, uh, ask you to, um...” Nuria trailed off, looking back to Edward for help.

“Do not panic, I know of what you are to ask, and who sent you,” Regice said placidly. “I merely wanted to hear your version of what you are to ask me,” it paused again, evidently waiting for some sort of answer. Nuria nudged Edward forward; after a brief icy stare at his friend, Edward turned to the ice-sculpure.

“Well, there's a murderer killing Legendary Pokemon,” he said as slowly and calmly as possible, “and...we thought that... you'd help us...try to, uh, kill it, in a stand with the other Legendary Pokemon...” As soon as he stopped talking he realised he was blushing violently, his face hot. He just found what he said too...honest – he didn't sugar-coat it enough, it just sounded too much. Sparing a brief glance behind, Nuria must have felt the same way; her face was buried in her palm. I've screwed this up, Edward knew, his hand reaching into his pocket and closing around a Pokeball. He could feel Nuria doing the same. Maybe if she sends Ralts out we can flee before-

“Very good. You have been truthful. I will help,” Regice said simply, deflating the pressure. Edward froze for a second, unsure.

“Sorry?” he asked abruptly.

“I said I will help when the need arises,” the ice creature summarised, staring blankly at the perplexed humans. “Is that not what you want?”

There was a strained silence.

“But,” Nuria started, pausing to choose the right words, “don't you want to battle or...something?”

“What would that accomplish? I am assured of your good nature in your honesty. We are short enough on time as it is, why waste more?”

There was another silence. It's got a point, Edward had to concede.

“So... we can go now?” Nuria asked tentatively. Almost immediately, the Legendary replied:

“Of course. I think you would also like to know that my siblings inhabit the Hoenn desert and on a hill in the Route 120. They will await your arrival. Now, leave.”

Even though it was a command, Edward felt himself free to make the choice, as though Regice wasn't really forcing him. Even so, he and Nuria turned, deeply disorientated, and started to shuffle back toward the tunnel.

“Oh, and if I may,” Regice's gravely yet cheery voice called, “before you find my siblings, train hard with your Pokemon. They are in no way half as welcoming as I.”

“Thank-you,” Edward said quietly as he followed Nuria out of the hall, already beginning to dread his next encounter with a Legendary Pokemon.



Next (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=15399194#postcount=117)

Rotomknight
13th August 2012, 2:03 AM
Regice seems...
like his personality just doesn't quite fit.
He's cooler than ice, yet you make him blunt in one paragraph, and caring in another.
Good parts, plot progression.
Don't make every legendary battle like this.

The Great Butler
13th August 2012, 9:13 AM
Chapter 14
Regice

The tunnel seemed to go on forever, an endless seam of darkness in the rock. Edward's hands were placed on the walls at all times, keeping him steady whenever he kicked Nuria in the back of the leg or stood on her heel, and therefore all the times she kicked back.

They walked for what could have been miles in complete silence, Edward consumed by thoughts of dread and trying to keep his breathing under control. He didn't feel as scared as before: maybe it was the fact that Nuria was with him, perhaps because he knew that it couldn't get any worse, or maybe he was in some form of shock, like a car-crash survivor.

After maybe half an hour, Edward found his arms wrapped around his chest: Why's it so cold?

It feels a little unusual that you note they could have been walking for miles but then say that they were only walking for half an hour. I don't think it would be easy to walk "miles" in that little an amount of time.


Then it struck him: Oh, Regice! How did I not realise that before? He found himself thinking back to anything he might have seen or heard that would help him visualize Regice. He bit his lip. Why couldn't he remember? Had he not had stories of legends read to him by his parents as a bed-time story when he was but a boy? Hadn't he read those books himself as he matured? He knew Regice was a guardian of... something, but apart from that, nothing. Was there no picture of Regice? Then again, if Regice had been down here all this time, how would a picture get taken? the rational part of his mind responded.

After perhaps another half an hour, Edward's teeth were chattering loudly, his arms folded up his shirt to conserve heat. He could hear Nuria breathing shakily in front of him, and judging by her dimly lit outline-

Edward suddenly jolted when he realised he could just about see Nuria and the walls of the cave, dimly illuminated by a light blue. His eyes must have become accustomed so slowly that he hadn't noticed it. Craning his head over Nuria's shoulder, he could see a far-off pin-prick of pale blue light.

“N-N-Nuria,” he stammered through chattering teeth, “Wh-h-h-h-hat is that?”

There was a long pause.

“Nu-Nuria?” he asked again, and once again there was no answer. Edward just shut up and kept on walking.

After another long silence, marred only by the rough scraping of shoes, Nuria finally spoke.

“How d-do we f-f-f-fight it?” Nuria said, teeth chattering. Too cold to speak, Edward just shrugged. Then he realised that must have been what Nuria had done earlier. Clearing his throat, he spoke up:

Boy, this could be bad news for them, since they went in unprepared and now realize it. It's too late now, though.


“I dunno... Zubat could confuse it.”

Another silence.

“D-d-do you really th-think that'll work?” she asked sceptically.

It really drives home how dire this situation is when you see Nuria, who was previously assertive and confident, clearly worried about their prospects.


“I... dunno...” Edward repeated, his mind working. If a fight were to start, what could his Pokemon do? Not even Ralts could do anything in the presence of Latios. So... against Regice? Ice type moves would knock out both Nincada and Zubat... kill, even...

Edward stopped moving. What am I doing? He and his Pokemon could easily die... even though Latias said that they went easy on Pokemon... but humans? How would they be able to escape an attack if Regice wasn't too friendly?

“N-Nuria, will Ralts save us if,” he struggled for the right words, “ if things go wrong?”

Another silence, albeit much heavier.

“Depends,” she said monotonously, “i-if Regice l-l-l-lets her.”

No pun intended, but that last bit - "if Regice lets her" - is really chilling. It really makes you feel just how much of a risk this whole operation is.


Edward nodded shakily. He knew Regice might just freeze her or something, but hoped for at least some guarantee that something could be done.

As they continued Edward consciously made out the change in light intensity; soon the tube he and Nuria were in was illuminated brightly by an icy blue, and the air was unbelievably freezing. Both he and Nuria were shivering violently; they now each had an arm around each other in an attempt to conserve body heat. What had once been a whitey -blue speck was now a large, sharp pale blue beacon, emanating pure chill.

"Unbelievably freezing" sounds a little odd; I think I'd go with "unbelievably cold" instead.


“Th-th-th-th-this i-i-is s-s-s-s-s-stup-p-p-id,” Nuria chattered. “Ed-d-d-dy, send out Mudki-i-i-ip.” With a numb, shivering arm he sent out Mudkip, too cold to argue. Mukip materialised and was it was instantly obvious that the cold didn't affect him much. There was something else too, he had his head cocked to the side, as though listening to some far-off voice.

“M-m-mudki-i-i-ip, use a g-g-gentle Wat-t-t-er G-gun on us,” Nuria said, her teeth clacking. In his distracted state, Mudkip didn't even recognise the command as Nuria, but opened fired water all the same.

Edward opened his mouth to protest, but got a mouth full of body-temperature water for all his troubles. He felt the water blast pounding all over him, instantly warming him up slightly– he was still cold, but not as much.

“Good one,” Edward said, no longer shivering. “Thanks, Mudkip,” he said to his Pokemon, but the mud-fish didn't reply, still as though deep in thought. Well, at least he isn't depressed any more, he thought as he recalled Mudkip. The next moment Nuria had carried on walking, Edward following behind, dripping wet. Every now and then the cold would return and nearly freeze their clothes, but each time Edward would simply ask an increasingly distracted Mudkip to use a Water Gun attack, drenching both of the humans and warming them up slightly.

Okay, I have to point out that this part strains logic severely.

Mudkip spraying normal-temperature water on people while they are in a freezing environment would do nothing but get them wet, and if you're wet in a freezing environment, you will get hypothermia and ultimately freeze to death. If Mudkip was using Scald (and thus, spraying them with hot water) it would make a little more sense, but the point would still apply because Edward and Nuria would still be wet.


As the light became more intense, so did the air pressure; several times Edward felt his ears pop. He'd been around enough Legendaries to know he was approaching one.

“What do we say to it?” Edward asked suddenly, cocking his head to the side. Of course, he'd been thinking about how to battle, but wouldn't he have to convince the ice monster using words as well?

“How about the truth?” Nuria suggested, not looking up or looking vaguely interested. Edward shrugged, thinking of how the truth would be delivered exactly.

Hello, Mr. Ice monster, we sort of need you to become part of a suicidal mission to kill something that has destroyed countless planets like this thousands of times over. Are you fine with that?

Somehow, he didn't think words could cut it.

He should hope that words do cut it, because they're likely screwed otherwise.


As they approached the end of the tunnel, it became apparent that the shining was not an exit, but merely a transition of tunnels. Freezing cold, even though he'd been watered mere seconds ago, Edward could see the sudden transition from shiny grey to clear, dazzling white crystal. No, not crystal, he realized, ice.

He and Nuria stood, side by side, on the threshold of the ice tunnel, each unsure if it would be safe to go further. Edward's shivers were so powerful he had to lean against the rock for support to stand up, and he'd brought the sodden scruff of his shirt up to his neck to warm him slightly – to no avail. The water that had previously kept him warmer now froze to his clothing, causing his skin to burn from the sheer absence of heat.

Wordlessly, Nuria was the first to step forward, and the second she did her limbs fell to her side; she whirled around, her features happier than Edward could have thought possible, and said:

“Eddy, come on – it's warm”

Edward narrowed his eyes. Was this the final stage of hypothermia - delusion?

Here, you've pointed out the problem with the Water Gun solution, so perhaps it isn't as severe a mistake after all. Was it just a moment of bad judgment on Edward and Nuria's part?


“M-m-m-mayb-b-be w-w-we shhhhhhould come back with w-w-warmer c-c-clothes?” he stuttered, his teeth clattering together so violently he barely managed to string together a coherent sentence. In response, Nuria simply rolled her eyes and suddenly pulled Edward over to her, across the boundary of the rock.

The second he stumbled in, he saw what Nuria meant. The cold was gone, replaced by... he couldn't say if it was hot or not, just... normal. The air felt as though it carried no temperature, nothing to heat or cool the teens. As well has this, he realised he was completely steady, as though the ice was simply not slippery.

Edward found himself grinning, in spite of the scenario. He felt... comfortable, more comfortable than he thought was possible at this time. Even his nerves had settled. Which led him to wonder, why?

Was it possible that, now they were in its domain, Regice could shield them from the cold? But that would mean it knows we're here, Edward realised, turning suddenly to see how far the ice-tunnel went on for. He couldn't see an end.

Thing is, if Regice doesn't want them there, it doesn't have to shield them from the cold. It probably doesn't make a difference as far as Regice is concerned.


“So, what do we do?” Nuria asked, perked up considerably, as she began to walk forward, Edward following. Edward, pondering on his last thought, shrugged. “So, when we meet Regice, we, what, explain what's going on first? Will we have to challenge it to prove our worth? Or will it just attack us on sight?”

“No,” Edward said carefully in response to the last question, “I think we'd be dead if it wanted us dead. I mean, this is basically its territory, right?”

“Yeah, I suppose so,” Nuria mumbled. She folded her arms behind her head. “So, if we have to fight, what tactics do we use?”

Edward blinked: what could be effective? Would his Pokemon's attacks actually do anything? Suddenly he jumped: My Pokemon!

What about Mudkip, Zubat and Nincada? Wouldn't it be fair to know what's going on? After all, there was always a chance... No, don't think that! Latias had said that Legendaries went easy on other Pokemon...But it is a Legendary after all... what if it forgets to be weak?

But should they know? That would be the nice thing... even sensible in case they freeze up during battle.

“Hey, Nuria, do you reckon we should tell our Pokemon about... you know?” Edward asked.

“Why worry them?” she replied, not breaking stride.

“But, shouldn't they be mentally prepared?”

Nuria snorted: “Eddy, you do things your way, and I'll do things my way. Shellder will just flop around, Ralts will go all quiet and Bayleef won't talk to me. I think it's best we focus on what to say and how we should battle, personally.”

I think Edward actually has a point here. Nuria might be acting a bit too confidently right now.


Edward shook his head. How could she think that?

“Well, how about you wait while I talk to my Pokemon, okay?” he suggested. Nuria stopped, sighing.

“Sure,” she moaned. Edward smiled as he drew three filled Pokeballs from his pocket: a few seconds later, Mudkip and Nincada stood before him, all looking in wonder at the glacial tube around them, Zubat flapping around nervously, oblivious to his surroundings.

“Um, guys, I have an announcement,” Edward said, his voice solemn and heavy with guilt. If something happens... He shook his head. They'd be fine. Before he continued, however, he noticed a sudden change come over his Pokemon, each of their faces changing as some sort of understanding dawned on them.

Nincada stood stock-still, shivering erratically, despite the absence of cold. Zubat suddenly shrieked, beating his wings furiously, as he darted around the air, shouting: “Retreat, retreat, retreat!”, all the whilst Mudkip's eyes lit up as though possessed by wonder.

Edward wasn't sure which freaked him out the most.

Zubat suddenly flew an inch in front of Edward's face, breathing heavily.

“Master, we must flee now! There is a monster in yonder cavern – it would kill us for sure! We must run, flee, retreat, fly!”

“Zubat,” Edward said quickly as the Zubat finally drew breath, “relax, do not panic. I'll explain what's going on.”

Slowly but steadily, the Zubat's wings began to calm, though the bat had begun to hyperventilate. I'd better be quick, Edward thought.

In ordinary circumstances the image of a hyperventilating Zubat would be kind of funny, but things are so serious here that it's hard to laugh.


“Well, in short, there's a... murderer,”Let's leave it at that, “which is killing Legendary Pokemon,” (each of the Pokemon gasped), “so Latias and...Latios have chosen us to help by convincing each Legendary to make a stand.”

Mudkip and Nincada's eyes bulged. If Zubat had any, Edward was sure they would have too.

“I knew I sensed something! Will we battle them?” Mudkip asked, excitement shaking his voice. Okay, not the reaction I was expecting.

“Well, yes, probably,” Edward said. Instantly Zubat was airborne, screaming obscenities about how bad an idea this was, Nincada's eyes screamed of pure horror and Mudkip began to jump slightly, grinning maniacally.

“Zubat, stop!” Edward shouted over the screeches of the erratic bat. “Latias told us that you would all be safe, that Legendary Pokemon do not seriously harm regular Pokemon. So I'm just telling you that you'll be safe, no matter what, okay? Even if push comes to shove, Nuria's Ralts will save us. I just wanted to make sure that you're aware of what's going on in case we need to battle Regice. Is everyone okay with that?”

Edward suddenly noticed that Mudkip's eyes were glued shut, his body bouncing slightly as though he was trying his best to control his energy. Suddenly he shot his eyes open, excitement and determination like a flare in his face:

“I can't wait!” he barked happily, almost giddy. “I'll beat that Regice all by myself! It might even be impressed! I might even evolve! Then I'll be the most powerful Pokemon EVER!”

Mudkip might be overconfident, but he's so cheery about it that you can't help but love him.


Edward smiled weakly at the mud fish as Nuria began to laugh. Leaving Mudkip to his dreams of awesomeness, Edward turned to Nincada. It didn't move.

“Nincada?” Edward asked, concern in his voice. “Are you all right?”

“The cold,” the insect rasped is hoarse whisper, “the ice. It burns me. Please, master, go back, don't make me go to the frozen place.”

Edward took a second to process what Nincada was saying. Then it dawned on him. When the Ice Punch landed on Nincada... when he became encased in the ice... Nincada's look of horror... Nincada wasn't just weak to ice types, Edward realised, ice itself scared him witless.

Nincada's fear is totally understandable, but still, the way he delivers it is somewhat disturbing.


Before he could speak, Nuria interjected: “Wait, so just because you're afraid of a little frozen water you're going to wuss out altogether?”

Sorry, but Nuria, that one was out of line.


“I mean, if we were to lose the battle, what would be done?”

“As I said, Ralts would Teleport us all out of there, okay?” he said, smiling with all the courage he could muster. As long as she doesn't get knocked out first or Regice doesn't let us leave, he said internally, fear gripping his heart yet again. He found himself beginning to panic again. It could kill us, it could kill us.

Wouldn't the solution to this then be to not let Ralts battle and hold her back until they need her to escape?


From behind him, Edward felt Nuria place a comforting hand on his shoulder. He relaxed only slightly, his breathing still very quick. This will be the only chance we have to survive. I shouldn't fear death any more. But the fear was impossible to eradicate; he only suppressed it. Standing, he recalled Zubat and Mudkip and went over to the paralysed Nincada. Holding him gently, Edward picked up the insect and carried him over to the rock a few metres away.

“Are you sure you can't come?” Edward asked tentatively. Nincada didn't reply, but started to burrow into the rock, then covered itself with the pebbles. Edward sighed, rose, and walked back over to Nuria.

This was a good scene, but you inconsistently referred to Nincada as "he" and then "it."




“Will Bayleef fight for us?” Edward asked over to Nuria. She wavered her hand, unsure. “What?” Edward asked.

Shouldn't that say "Nuria asked" at the end, not "Edward asked?"

If that's the case, it should be separated into two individual lines since two people are speaking.



The air pressure was still building, he realised it was a matter of time before they would encounter it. His heart began race; he felt as though he was about to throw up. He felt so unsure, so worried, so panicked.

"His heart began to race."


And suddenly they were there.

Edward's gaze shot upwards when he suddenly realised he was in a giant cavern of white, so similar in colour to the tunnel he simply hadn't noticed the transition. Huge, needle-sharp stalactites pointed down on the humans. Even though he knew they must have been there for thousands of years, Edward had a feeling they could fall and skewer him and his friend in a second if Regice so chose.

Edward's head snapped forward at the thought, searching for the Legendary Pokemon. But before his eyes he could only make out the beautiful, glittering dome-like cavern; the wall sparkling like an uncut diamond and had the same-shaped irregular formations of various shades of light blue and white. The floor twinkled as though layered with a fine sheet of snow. But he could make out no visible Pokemon, Legendary or otherwise.

Still, he couldn't shake the feeling that he was looking at something... he simply felt drawn to looking into a certain space in the middle of the chamber, the space that pure chill seemed to emanate from.

Beautiful visual here.


“Greetings,” said a voice pleasantly. Its tone was completely at odds with its cold, dry voice which one would associate with a serial killer. Edward's eyes widened as he tried to place the source of the noise, but still saw glittering white. He saw Nuria searching by him, but to no avail.

“Do not panic,” said the voice again, calm and steady, and still from nowhere, “I stand before you, merely camouflaged into my surroundings. Can you see me now?”

Edward caught a small moving crystal, and instantly his eyes latched onto the bigger creature.

Its pale, bluey-white, pointed, elongated hexagonal arm ended in three miniature, hexagonal crystals, similar to the arm itself. The body was simply a longer, thicker crystal, otherwise identical to the arm. Behind the Pokemon's body were four more crystals in two rows, extended pointedly like short, spindly wings. Looking closer, Edward could roughly make out a plus sign on the body made out of yellow circles – three up, five across – on the edge on the two central crystal faces. It stood completely still, its finely-pointed legs balancing the creature perfectly. Edward was under the impression that the Legendary hadn't ever moved.

He also couldn't help think how... lacklustre the Pokemon's appearance was. There was no doubt in his mind that this was in fact Regice, but he had expected so much more. There were none of Latios' menace, none of Latias' brilliant red feathers... just ice.

Regice's voice and tone suit it, and your description of it - "none of Latios's menace, none of Latias's brilliant red feathers... just ice" - is a surprisingly apt description for one of the Regis.


That wasn't to say he couldn't feel its power; it was simply a different power to that of the dragons. This legend felt far more... durable. He had the impression that it would still be standing even if a nuclear bomb detonated right next to it. Still standing, looking forward into some far-off distance that only it could see...

“So, you have something to ask of me,” it said politely. It paused, expectancy ripe in the air.

Edward exchanged a confused glance with Nuria: this isn't going the way I pictured it. His muscles were tense, ready for battle at any second. Slowly and cautiously, Nuria spread her hands.

“Well, um, Sir, well, Latios sent us to, uh, ask you to, um...” Nuria trailed off, looking back to Edward for help.

“Do not panic, I know of what you are to ask, and who sent you,” Regice said placidly. “I merely wanted to hear your version of what you are to ask me,” it paused again, evidently waiting for some sort of answer. Nuria nudged Edward forward; after a brief icy stare at his friend, Edward turned to the ice-sculpure.

“Well, there's a murderer killing Legendary Pokemon,” he said as slowly and calmly as possible, “and...we thought that... you'd help us...try to, uh, kill it, in a stand with the other Legendary Pokemon...” As soon as he stopped talking he realised he was blushing violently, his face hot. He just found what he said too...honest – he didn't sugar-coat it enough, it just sounded too much. Sparing a brief glance behind, Nuria must have felt the same way; her face was buried in her palm. I've screwed this up, Edward knew, his hand reaching into his pocket and closing around a Pokeball. He could feel Nuria doing the same. Maybe if she sends Ralts out we can flee before-

“Very good. You have been truthful. I will help,” Regice said simply, deflating the pressure. Edward froze for a second, unsure.

“Sorry?” he asked abruptly.

“I said I will help when the need arises,” the ice creature summarised, staring blankly at the perplexed humans. “Is that not what you want?”

There was a strained silence.

“But,” Nuria started, pausing to choose the right words, “don't you want to battle or...something?”

“What would that accomplish? I am assured of your good nature in your honesty. We are short enough on time as it is, why waste more?”

There was another silence. It's got a point, Edward had to concede.

“So... we can go now?” Nuria asked tentatively. Almost immediately, the Legendary replied:

“Of course. I think you would also like to know that my siblings inhabit the Hoenn desert and on a hill in the Route 120. They will await your arrival. Now, leave.”

Even though it was a command, Edward felt himself free to make the choice, as though Regice wasn't really forcing him. Even so, he and Nuria turned, deeply disorientated, and started to shuffle back toward the tunnel.

“Oh, and if I may,” Regice's gravely yet cheery voice called, “before you find my siblings, train hard with your Pokemon. They are in no way half as welcoming as I.”

“Thank-you,” Edward said quietly as he followed Nuria out of the hall, already beginning to dread his next encounter with a Legendary Pokemon.

I feel like that might have been resolved a bit too quickly. There was this massive, chapter-long buildup... and nothing really happened. I think Regice should have at least battled them for training, if Regirock and Registeel are going to be that much harder.

I'm sorry if this review wasn't as in-depth as usual. I hope you enjoy your trip.

Scaldaver
13th August 2012, 9:56 AM
Thank you, Rotomknight and The Great Butler: I do like your criticism and hope to resolve it :)

Great Butler, I put in that sentence 'for what could have been miles', meaning it was just a really long, boring walk that, in Edward's mind, seemed to go on forever.

I've put Mudkip's Water Gun as warming because, as the mud fish's internal body heat is approximately 37.5 degrees Centigrade and the skin temperature of the two humans is much lower than that, the water would heat and warm. But as you said, TGB, soon the more active molecules would disipate into the surroundings, making the remaning water much colder and perhaps freeze. That is why Mudkip would come out again to do it, and did Water Gun quite a few times before it got too cold to be effective at all near the end of the rock tube. I'll highlight that info now.

And the 'What?' is Edward speaking, replying to Nuria's casual hand wavering.

I'm dissapointed that the bluntness at the end is so criticised - I thought (and still do) that a smart Pokemon (or anyone) wouldn't want to waste someone's time when the end of the world was imminent.

Thanks for all the help, everyone, and keep the comments coming!

The Great Butler
14th August 2012, 6:11 AM
I'm dissapointed that the bluntness at the end is so criticised - I thought (and still do) that a smart Pokemon (or anyone) wouldn't want to waste someone's time when the end of the world was imminent.


It's not that the ending doesn't make sense - it does, and I agree with your reasoning for it - it's that the buildup for the rest of the chapter made it feel like a little bit of a letdown when nothing happened.

JX Valentine
26th August 2012, 12:23 AM
And months after you ask me to review, here I am!

Now, I have to say I'm going to do something I don't normally do, and that's review just the last chapter. Normally, I tackle the first and then work my way forward, but because I read through all fourteen so far and because each chapter is lengthy, I figured this would be easier.

Not that I would have a lot to talk about anyway. I have to say I've been pleasantly surprised by this fic so far. At first, I was a bit hesitant because the beginning looked a lot like an average trainer fic (complete with the "this kid is going to meet legendaries and here's the start of that plot" route as well as the "this kid is older than average" bit), but the moment Groudon died pretty much overturned every expectation I was harboring for this. In fact, I love the beginning because of how drastically different this is as a trainer fic.

Beyond that, there's just so much to this fic. To start things off, you have older trainers, sure, but Nuria and Edward's reasons for being older actually make sense. (And I do believe this is one of the few fics where a logical explanation is actually provided.) You reshape the entire Hoenn region and are wonderfully consistent with the details to your new map. Your characters are well-written, and it's beautiful that you cast the underdog (and probably the person who would normally be relegated to traveling companion duty) as the main character. Extra points for emphasizing the usefulness of intelligence over brute force, by the way. Then, there's drama between legendaries (having them get murdered aside), and it creates an intense note of tension that drove me to keep reading. I want to know who this murderer is, and I'm thrilled to watch legendary in-fighting over what to do about it and over who the chosen one should be.

Moreover, the descriptions are very vivid, and although there were a few grammatical hiccups here and there (The early chapters had me sigh and say to myself, "Oldale. Oldale!"), but generally, they were few in numbers – few enough to be easily looked over in favor of the solid plot and intriguing characters.

In short, this story is fresh and different, and I'm not sure why I spent so long putting off reviewing.

But anyway, the detailed review.


Edward's hands were placed on the walls at all times, keeping him steady whenever he kicked Nuria in the back of the leg or stood on her heel, and therefore all the times she kicked back.

I wonder if this sentence would benefit from rewording. It's just that middle clause (between the commas) that seems out-of-place, especially when you continue on into that last clause.


They walked for what could have been miles in complete silence,

Here I have to stop, and it's not really to respond to you. It's actually to respond to something The Great Butler said by letting you know that I think this part is actually okay in my eyes. It depends on how quickly they were walking. For example, brisk walking, flat or downward sloping path, healthy body? You could probably do a mile or two in about fifteen minutes, so a half an hour for plural miles sounds pretty okay to me.

Of course, you can also change this slightly to say they felt like they walked for miles, and that would be completely legit considering they're getting increasingly uncomfortable.


Then it struck him: Oh, Regice! How did I not realise that before?

I lol'd. Not going to lie.


He knew Regice was a guardian of... something, but apart from that, nothing.

That actually poses a good question that I couldn't help but stop and think about for awhile while I was reading. There's not much to the legends surrounding the Regis, is there? At most, we get the fact that they were sealed away by people, but it's never really mentioned that they were guardians of anything (aside from Regigigas, who has a legit claim to being legendary) or that they were particularly special in any way. Rather weird, actually.

…On the other hand, the Latis got the same treatment from the 'dex. Half the Hoenn legendaries actually seem rather random if one thinks about it.


After perhaps another half an hour, Edward's teeth were chattering loudly, his arms folded up his shirt to conserve heat.

Put "and" between "loudly" and "his" (after the comma). Be careful about comma splices. If you have two independent clauses in a sentence, you'll need to handle the whole shebang as if it's a compound somehow (either by adding in a conjunction or by using a semicolon) to separate them properly.


So... against Regice? Ice type moves would knock out both Nincada and Zubat... kill, even...

I also have to say I feel very comfortable with the narration style here. That sounds weird, sure, but I mean that it helps a reader slip into Edward's mindset a bit easier. It's very hard to write this way outside of a non-serious fic, but here, it's done pretty well. It sticks to Edward's thoughts, highlights his insecurities, and draws out the tension as he feels it. In short, it's a good move.


“N-Nuria, will Ralts save us if,” he struggled for the right words, “ if things go wrong?”

I'd say replace the comma after the first "if" with a dash, add in another dash right before the second "if," and punctuate the bit outside of the quotes as if it's its own sentence. The reason why I say that is because it's not a dialogue tag. While it describes how Edward is speaking, it doesn't attach itself to the quote itself with a "said" word, if that makes sense.


He knew Regice might just freeze her or something, but hoped for at least some guarantee that something could be done.

Here you can do one of two things. You can either drop the comma, or you can add in "he" between "but" and "hope." As it stands, this isn't a compound by itself because the second clause lacks a subject.


a whitey -blue speck

I'd highly recommend using "whitish-blue" or "white-blue." "Whitey" is a racial slur in some parts of the world. ._.


Mukip materialised and was it was instantly obvious that the cold didn't affect him much.

Be very careful in the proofreading process. If it helps, wait twenty-four hours after you finish writing to tackle the chapter again. The wait will help you rest, and the longer you separate yourself from your work, the more likely you'll be able to see things from the reader's perspective. (You'll still have a bit of author's bias, but you'll at least be removed enough to be a bit more critical of your own work.) It might also help to read your work aloud while proofreading because that will slow you down and help you hear what you put down on a page, but if you're normally in a public area, it's okay if you don't.

Either way, try reading this sentence aloud to pick out some of the errors I'm seeing here. There's the obvious Mukip instead of Mudkip, but the rest of it just feels awkwardly worded. I think you mean, "Mudkip materialised, and it was instantly obvious that the cold didn't affect him much," but however you'd like to handle that second half of the sentence is up to you.


There was something else too, he had his head cocked to the side, as though listening to some far-off voice.

If it also helps, whenever you put a conjunction (and, but, or, nor, for, yet, so) or a comma in a sentence, try replacing them with periods first. If you get two separate, complete sentences as a result, you've got a compound and will need a comma-conjunction combination to handle the bridge between one clause and the other. If you get one complete sentence and one fragment, you don't have a compound, and that's when you just use a conjunction and nothing else. Either way, a comma can't be used to separate two independent clauses by itself. It indicates too short of a break to handle joining together two complete thoughts.


Edward opened his mouth to protest, but got a mouth full of body-temperature water for all his troubles. He felt the water blast pounding all over him, instantly warming him up slightly– he was still cold, but not as much.

Here's where I have to agree with Butler. While the temperatures may be sound at first, the problem is that the last thing you want to do when it's cold is get wet. The reason why is because dampness causes heat to escape objects quickly, which will cause a rapid drop in core body temperature. Soaking yourself may actually lead to hypothermia and frostbite a lot faster, so it's generally not the healthiest solution if they didn't know how long they'd be in subzero temperatures. Moreover, layering hot water on cold water won't necessarily warm you up.

This is why it's highly recommended that if you get soaked in cold weather, you seek out shelter and change into dry clothes. (Layering dry clothes on top of wet clothes isn't a guarantee that you'll be protected because you're keeping that layer of wetness against your skin, which will in turn continue to cool down your body and keep your core body temperature low.) Likewise, it's also recommended that you don't spend too much time in cold temperatures (such as a cold rain) if you're soaked – because body temperature is dependent on outside temperature as well.

Sure, Mudkip would repeat the process, but in the end, it's really, really a bad idea to do because Mudkip would be required to be out and soaking them constantly to keep their body temperature stabilized. That's not particularly practical if you don't know how long you're going to be in the cold (or if you have reason to believe the cold is just going to get worse – and considering Edward is thinking about ways that he can get killed here…).

Le sauce (http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/fitness/HQ01681/), if you're interested.


The second he stumbled in, he saw what Nuria meant. The cold was gone, replaced by... he couldn't say if it was hot or not, just... normal.

I do have to say this is a really interesting concept to think about. I love it when authors attempt to tackle alien ideas (like a lack of temperature) and pull it off, and I think this is one of those instances. Edward doesn't know how to describe it, and the narration itself stumbles at first to come up with a way but then delivers a vivid description of it and Edward's reaction.


Edward found himself grinning, in spite of the scenario.

No need for the comma here.


Edward blinked: what could be effective?

Put a period after "blinked" and start off the next sentence with a capital letter. This really isn't a compound because part of this is Edward's thought, and you can't really blink a sentence unless you're awesome at Morse code.


“I knew I sensed something! Will we battle them?” Mudkip asked, excitement shaking his voice. Okay, not the reaction I was expecting.

But still beautiful and the exact reason why I love Mudkip.

Really, you do a very nice job of bringing each Pokémon to life. They're not just cardboard cutouts or the supporting actors to the humans. They're individuals with their own personalities. You have Bayleef, an adamant supporter of Pokémon rights; Mudkip, the overenthusiastic and potentially trigger-happy partner to Edward; Zubat, who's almost like a knight in shining armor stereotype (not that that's a bad thing); Ralts, the Fluttershy of the group who only wants to make Nuria happy; and so forth. Even the Pokémon that don't get as much screentime, such as Nincada, have a little something to their own personalities that make them unique and enjoyable to watch. It's just a well-rounded cast.

Of course, at the same time, you also don't forget that these Pokémon aren't human, despite the fact that you translate their speech. That's a pitfall that many authors fall into (translating speech leading to forgetting that the characters aren't human), so it's refreshing to see you missed that problem.


Edward had a feeling they could fall and skewer him and his friend in a second if Regice so chose.

Might sound better if you ordered it "his friend and him."


the wall sparkling like an uncut diamond and had the same-shaped irregular formations of various shades of light blue and white.

The wall sparkled. Otherwise, you'll have verb inconsistency here, and that kind of thing ends up being a little awkward. (Also, the semicolon just before this phrase signals a compound sentence, so you'll need a non-infinitive verb here anyway.)

Still, beautiful details here.


Its pale, bluey-white,

Blue-white. Bluey isn't really a word, unfortunately.


He also couldn't help think how... lacklustre the Pokemon's appearance was. There was no doubt in his mind that this was in fact Regice, but he had expected so much more. There were none of Latios' menace, none of Latias' brilliant red feathers... just ice.

Also an interesting take on legendaries. I love that you brought up the idea that "legend" doesn't necessarily mean "awe-inspiring on all levels." Sometimes, real-world gods were just like people, so it's not entirely necessary to make every god be, well, god-like. In this moment, Edward realizes just that. It's just, put simply, very refreshing to see someone treat the legendaries this way – as if to say, "Yeah, they're not all that awesome at times."

I think that's a lot of the reason why I like your legendaries too. They bicker, they're violent, they're sometimes even judgmental, and some of them are even underwhelming in appearance. There's no hero-worship going on. It's almost like the fic is saying the legendaries are sort of overrated. And it's beautiful to see them taken down a peg not only via less-than-saintly personalities and less-than-impressive impressions (no pun intended) but also via the murders. Sure, they're still massively powerful (and you did a great job in an earlier chapter explaining to what extent), but they're also not invincible.


“Very good. You have been truthful. I will help,” Regice said simply, deflating the pressure. Edward froze for a second, unsure.

“Sorry?” he asked abruptly.

“I said I will help when the need arises,” the ice creature summarised, staring blankly at the perplexed humans. “Is that not what you want?”

There was a strained silence.

“But,” Nuria started, pausing to choose the right words, “don't you want to battle or...something?”

“What would that accomplish? I am assured of your good nature in your honesty. We are short enough on time as it is, why waste more?”

There was another silence. It's got a point, Edward had to concede.

“So... we can go now?” Nuria asked tentatively. Almost immediately, the Legendary replied:

“Of course. I think you would also like to know that my siblings inhabit the Hoenn desert and on a hill in the Route 120. They will await your arrival. Now, leave.”

I have to disagree with Butler and Rotomknight on the subject of this ending. First off, we were told by Latias and Latios that Regice would be more willing to hear the kids out, so this doesn't entirely strike me as surprising.

Second and more appropriately, though, it says a lot about the nature of the legendaries. Latios was violent and angry when confronting the kids; Regice wasn't. Regice is cool (no pun intended), calm, rational – almost like a wise king. It just fits, although I can't entirely put into words why; it just feels like something you'd expect from an ancient ice giant with "regi" in its name.

That and it's a beautiful twist. Sure, maybe that's the part that feels very anticlimactic, but really, it's just hilarious that there was all this buildup towards an epic battle, and we get a rational character instead. I'm sure that wouldn't have worked if we weren't told by Latias previously that that might happen. Even besides that, it's just in general refreshing to know that not every encounter or plot point will involve brute force. Sometimes, diplomacy will be used, and given the way you handle your characters, I have every reason to believe the diplomacy parts will be anything but boring.


In short, you have interesting characters, a plot that happily trots off the beaten path shortly after it starts, wonderful descriptions, and it's in no way pretentious or nonsensical. Every little bit is solid, and every battle and encounter is actually exciting. I'm not sure why I took so long to read this, but I'm very glad I did because I'm absolutely fascinated by what you're doing here.

I'll be keeping an eye on this one.

Scaldaver
30th September 2012, 2:07 PM
..........
There are two reasons I haven't been on here for some time. The first is that I've been laden with GCSE exams. The second, and most importanteason, is that I've been trying to find words to express my emotions to the above post.

I didn't find any. Here's a picture that symbolises a twentieth of my feelings, though:

http://i0.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/106/887/backpain-1292835351.jpg

Scaldaver
30th September 2012, 2:15 PM
.............
There are two reasons I have taken so long to post. Firstly, I have been swamped with GCSEs. Second, I have been unable to find words for the above post.

Here's a picture to demonstrate how I feel when I read it:

http://i0.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/106/887/backpain-1292835351.jpg

You just about summed up everything I ever wanted to hear about my writing, and I am ever so grateful: I simply cannot fully explain how I feel about it.

I suppose I'm defeated regarding the 'water in cold' thing, so at least I can say that, being younger than me, the other two trainers could easily have made the same mistake :).

I've just started on the new chapter, so thanks so much for sticking with me everyone!

JX Valentine
30th September 2012, 7:56 PM
There are two reasons I have taken so long to post. Firstly, I have been swamped with GCSEs. Second, I have been unable to find words for the above post.

Here's a picture to demonstrate how I feel when I read it:

http://i0.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/106/887/backpain-1292835351.jpg

*EPIC BROFIST OF AWESOME*

Seriously, though, take your time. Real life >>>>> fanfic, regardless of what some people might say. *sage nod* That and important exams needed to get into uni and whatnot oh god why. (Read: Totally understand.)


I suppose I'm defeated regarding the 'water in cold' thing, so at least I can say that, being younger than me, the other two trainers could easily have made the same mistake :).

That's very true, now that you mention it. I really don't expect kids to know all the ways you can screw yourself over in the cold. And with only a bit of editing or some mindbending on our part, you can fudge things to take that into account, considering the number of times they use Mudkip to keep warm steadily increases the longer they stay in that passageway. So, that's actually probably buyable when you put it like that.

Doryuzu
1st October 2012, 4:47 AM
Prologue and Chapter 1



Three pokemon looked up at the boy expectantly in the forest clearing. The one to his left resembled some sort of tiny dinosaur, light green skin with very rounded limbs. Around the base of the neck-less head were small green beads, that went all the way around the flesh that formed the base of the head. Upon its head a large leaf on a stalk stuck out, just above the large red eyes. Below its featureless body were four featureless legs, each ending with a small white claw. A small tail protruded from its hind, waving gently from side to side. This was a Chikorita, the leaf pokemon. Standly calmly, its leaf waving gently in the cool breeze and, to all intents and purposes, looking pretty bored with the whole ordeal.No need to use "featureless" twice in a row like that.

Either way the prologue got me interested and you seem to know where you're going with this fic., so we can understand the Pokemon, eh? I was kinda surprised that Chikorita was a starter of the Hoenn trio, seemed weird but acceptable. Nuria also exhibits some snark personality in chapter 1 and we get to know she's a bit of a sassy character. Leaving Edward with the pink Pokedex, lolwhat? XD Either way it's a nice beginning and Edward gets a little embarrassed by her behavior. I have a feeling this is heading into the direction of those two ending up together, which would be predictable since it would feel like one of them is simply the other's token love interest, but I dunno. Just guessing, you did a good job at establishing Nuria as a personali-fied character early.

Chaper 2



“Oh, it says your a girl. Well hello Chikorita. My name is Nuria, and I'm your new master. I'm sure we will get very strong together and stuff. Hey Eddy!” She called out his dreaded pet name excitedly. “It says on here she already knows Razor Leaf! That means she's already level six. Must be my lucky day.” She looked at Chikorita, a light in her eyes. A possessive, greedy sort of look. The Chikorita sighed.

Imo, you could just combine the first two sentences into one oh and remember that "your" is possesive like "That's your dog." and "You're" is "you are" as in "You're fifteen-years-old." "Oh, it says you're a girl, well hello Chikorita." what I think the sentence should combine as.

Interesting, levels exist? It's a fanfic concept I've never come across, but the idea of levels for real life Pokemon is intriguing. I've only seen it in "Pokemon Adventures" the manga. I like Chikorita's characterization, she seems to have a lot of respect for herself and has an established past not to mention she has a nonsense personality. I love Mudkip's personality, he seems to be very motivated to become stronger and I liked the line about how Mudkip's evolved forms are nearly indestructible with an Ice-type move. Nice personality and moments. Nuria waited for Edward, that's cool since it shows those two do somewhat care about each other. And their parents were afraid to let them leave at a young age. Interesting concept regarding "The Shift" it sounds kinda like a Pokemon Swarm in a way. I liked how Chikorita and Mudkip have established personalities, like Chikorita blocking the Pokeball. Either way things look like they'll take off soon.

ChloboShoka
30th October 2012, 8:53 PM
Hope you enjoyed Portugal.

I thought chapter 14 had a really good opening because it contained a really great example of showing because I can clearly tell by reading the opening that it's cold. It also showed how close Nuria and Edward seem to be. The simile 'like a car-crash survivor' makes the imagery sound really intense and does a good job at building things up. The ending makes me want to read what happens next because I don't think it really has that closure. There's no real cliffhanger because things seem to have settled down.

The whole chapter as a whole was striking because of the way Regice was characterized. Edward seems to have feared for the worst. And other thing that stood out for me was mudkips. For me mudkips represent adorableness and amusement so seeing mudkip here made me feel very relaxed. The dialogue was good and realistic in my opinion. I like the use of punctuation used to show that they're freeing cold and they're chattering. I thought it was funny when Mudkip was trying to give them a shower to keep them warm. I think that the relationship between Edward and Nuria was very good and credible. Also amusing and satisfying when they came to conclusions.

I thought it was very well written and the style is kinda straight to the point and not too flowery which makes it all easier to read. I really enjoyed this chapter, kinda refreshing that it's not so dark after all the angst stories I've read recently. :D

Scaldaver
23rd November 2012, 11:39 PM
Chapter 15
The Guardian

The duo said nothing as they walked along the crystal passageway. The events which had just taken place were just too... jarring for Edward to completely grasp. After all those plans and steeled nerves, had they just been... let off the hook?

Before he knew it they were back to the darker rock tunnel; Edward would have carried straight on had he not seen the quaking collection of pebbles before his feet.

“Master, you live?” Nincada asked in a weak voice, blatant surprise on his face.

“Umm, yeah,” Edward said hesitantly, understanding completely why his Pokemon was surprised. Absent-mindedly he fumbled for the hollow Pokeball in his pocket and recalled his bug-type, just before Nincada could open his mouth.

They continued walking in a complete stupor until they reached the rock cavern. The darkness was now absolute, and Edward took only a few steps before he tripped on a small rock, being unaccustomed to the uneven ground . He cussed as he scraped his palms on more rocks, jarring Nuria to her senses.

“Go, Ralts,” she mumbled, releasing the white-limbed creature whilst illuminating the chamber. “Take us out of here,” Nuria said as she helped pull Edward to his feet. Edward felt a soft lump of flesh press into his side before the world changed; the landscape was still dark, but a thousand shades lighter, the rocks, ground and ocean all navy blue and thrown into sharp relief. He felt the cool, salty air kick his mind back into motion.

“So,” he said to his friend as she recalled her Pokemon. “That didn't go quite as expected, did it?”

The tension snapped; suddenly Edward and Nuria were in fits of giggles – Edward using a boulder for support whilst Nuria collapsed to the ground, holding her ribs as she racked with laughter. All the relief, the confusion, the suppressed panic was coming out in ways the humans couldn't understand.

“What just happened?” Nuria asked during a pause in her giggles. Edward, who had also calmed down, just stayed sitting, looking into space with a bemused expression.

“I think... we were let off?” he said incredulously, his joy swelling as he appreciated their good fortune. After all that worry! he couldn't help but think.

But he could feel his optimism draining slowly, like a small pin-prick letting the air out of a hot-air balloon. Something was scratching at his mind from his subconscious... They are in no way half as welcoming as I.

Edward deflated all of a sudden as foreboding eclipsed the happiness he had experienced mere seconds ago. Regice was the nice one. So, the others must be...

“Eddy, what's up?” Nuria asked, her voice piercing his thoughts. He looked up to her face suddenly and tried to animate it with false joy.

“Nothing!” he said, perhaps too exuberantly. Nuria snorted a short chuckle.

“Don't think about the other two, Eddy. What does it exactly mean if Regice said they weren't as 'welcoming' as he was? What are they gonna do, not wave at us? They're all related... or something, so they must be similar in some way! What we should be wondering about, though, is our sleeping arrangements for the night.”

Edward blinked. Of course! The world was silent: everybody must have left the island. Which meant they were alone, on an island in the middle of the ocean for... how many days had the boat-man said?

No matter how many days, they'd still have to at least sleep for the night. Edward looked around, trying to make out any place which offered anything cosier than rock. Moss? Seaweed? His eyes had just darted past the lips of the mini-mountain when he saw it.

“Look!” he gasped to Nuria before heading off, nearly tripping a dozen times as he began to climb the few rocks.

“What is it?” she asked, scepticism and doubt ripe in her voice, as Edward reached the strange object. He lay his hand upon it, feeling the layers of nylon compress upon each other under his touch, and, he detected, a strong, unyielding middle section coated in the soft material.

“Tent!” he suddenly exclaimed, hefting the bag up as he descended the rocks, more slowly and carefully this time. Not because he was trying to be especially careful, but because the weight of the thing restricted his mobility.

By the time he reached the base Nuria was there, arms out as though to take his burden from him. Just before he could pass it, however, she suddenly snatched something off the top. Edward could hear the sound of un-crumpling paper as Nuria began to talk:

“It says,” she muttered, bringing the thin scrap of paper closer to her eyes, “'Boy and girl, you never came out from the cave.' Well, way to state the obvious!”

“What else?” Edward asked, not wanting to be kept waiting with the rather heavy package.

“'Because I'm on a tight schedule I can't wait around: sleep in the tent for the night and enjoy the beans. Pack up the tent again in the morning and leave it where you found it. Girl, you have a Ralts. In the morning, use it to get to Slateport.'”

There was a brief silence as they took in those words.

“Well then,” Nuria said, perplexed, “we'd better do as the strange old man says.”

Edward and Nuria spent a while looking for a flat, even patch of land, and Edward spent a few minutes clearing it of small rocks (for Nuria was now holding the tent, her breathing, to Edward's annoyance, not even slightly laboured after five minutes).

“So, when he said that you should use your Ralts...” Edward began tenuously as he began unzipping the bag as Nuria stood above him.

“No clue. Ralts can only Teleport to places she's been before. I don't know why he'd-”

She was suddenly interrupted by the explosion of fabric before her; the tent had suddenly popped up into position, free-standing and sturdy-looking. Edward himself had been pushed backwards onto his back, unhurt yet dazed for a moment. As he sat up he felt something hard under his leg.

“Found the beans,” he said, lifting up the moderately-sized can for Nuria to see.

“You know what, I'm really not hungry,” Nuria said with a yawn as she crawled into the tent. Edward shrugged: he felt the same way – his stomach felt too turbulent for even the thought of eating anything.

“So... time to sleep?” Edward proposed, looking into the mouth of the tent. It was far more spacious than the last, he observed with a grin, enough to fit way more than two people! Speaking of which...

“Shall we let out our Pokemon again? Just in case...?

“Sure,” she said, and soon all six Pokemon were free. Instantly Zubat and Mudkip shot forward, as though expecting to attack. They stopped short, though, when they realised they were out in the open air amongst friends.

“Where's Regice?” Mudkip pined after a second of looking around, looking at Edward with wide, sparkling eyes.

“Well, it-”

“Master, so you have seen sense! I am most jubilant that you have chosen to spare our lives!”

“Thanks Zubat, but-”

“What's a Regice?” Bayleef interjected. Suddenly all the Pokemon were talking amongst themselves, Mudkip telling stories of massive demons made of ice and Zubat telling anyone who would listen that they were lucky to be alive, with Ralts and Bayleef asking quick questions to the two. Edward prepared himself to shout when he felt a surge of fatigue wash over him – suddenly he couldn't find the energy.

“Look,” Nuria called over the din, barely suppressing another yawn herself, “we'll all talk about it in the morning. Me and Edward are going to sleep now, and you lot can stay up as late as you want, okay?”

Without another word she turned, ignoring the bombardment of questions raining down upon her, and got back into the tent. Before he was subjected to the same treatment, Edward slid in after her.

It was much darker inside the tent, and the voices of the exasperated, news-hungry Pokemon seemed further off. After a few seconds he heard them move off altogether, presumably to the other side of the little island.

Nuria had lain down near the back of the tent, so Edward lay next to the zipped-up entrance. The temperature was warm, the climate more humid than the previous night, and the floor to the tent was padded ever so slightly, so he didn't feel the need for a sleeping bag. He just lay still for a few seconds, then closed his eyes.

Thoughts began to plague his mind almost immediately, fear-encased images of the next challenges they'd have to face. The longer he lay in quiet solitude, the more the thoughts panicked him, thus keeping him awake. What will they do when we meet them? was but one of the torturous questions popping in and out of his head, bringing to his mind the image of unspeakable horrors.

After what seemed like hours of tossing and turning he'd figured out that he needed to do something...

Something to distract me...

Of course, he'd been behaving like that ever since they'd come out of the cave; he'd acted on impulse, not thinking his actions through as he normally did. So he lived in the here and now, away from the plagues of his mind.

So getting off to sleep is nigh-on impossible...

“Nuria, you awake?” he whispered quietly into the darkness mere moments after coming to this conclusion.

“Yes,” she said in a clear voice, an ounce of frustration indicating that she, too, had trouble sleeping.

“Wanna talk?” he asked, turning to face her even though he couldn't see ten centimetres in front of him.

“Sure,” she said, and the ruffle of material indicated that she too had turned to face him.

They talked about everything and nothing, any and every topic of interest which entered their heads. All except about their journey, or anything to do with the task. About Pokesports, recent (but not too recent) news, school, food, games, gossip, anything which could distract them for the smallest of moments. It was half-way through the discussion over clothes did he feel his eyelids drooping, and, soon, his entire body relaxing. The next morning, he did not even know the last topic of discussion they'd talked about before he'd fallen asleep.

***

The six Pokemon were in a circle, some sitting, some lying. Almost all of them were attentive, joining in in what was being said.

“A Legendary Pokemon?” snorted Bayleef sceptically to the bouncing Mudkip opposite her.

“Yeah,” the mud fish said, his demeanour stroppy. “And he said we could fight it! He proooooomiiiiiised!”

“Knave!” the Zubat snarled as he lay on his back. “You have no idea the danger that was upon us!”

“Yeah, yeah,” Mudkip muttered, waving a paw in dismissal, “that's what you think. But who's the one who's weak to ice? Yep, you. I, on the other hand, could have taken it down easily.”

Before Zubat could reply with a venomous comment, Bayleef started loudly:

“Look at the pair of you. Legendary Pokemon are waaaaay too powerful to even approach. Even my trainer wouldn't be so-”

“There was one!” Mudkip barked defiantly. “I could feel it, you know?”

“I concur!” Zubat screeched. “There was a creature of tremendous power, I could sense it!”

Bayleef tutted and turned her head, causing the other two Pokemon to speak louder to try and convince her. Meanwhile, Ralts had stood up and slowly paced over to Nincada, who, to all intents and purposes, looked as inanimate as the rocks surrounding him.

“Was there really?” the psychic type asked quietly, kneeling down in front of the bug. Nincada's eyes suddenly flicked up toward Ralts' head, wide and full of terror.

“So cold,” he whispered hoarsely. “I could feel death, the frost. So cold.”

Ralts didn't feel comfortable; she could feel the pure fear radiating off the insect, infecting her with its paralysing grip. A soul-crushing sense of foreboding settled upon her, constricting her chest. Glimpses of the ice cave flashed in her mind, long and infinite from the security of the rocks. And at then end... a terrible presence...

“The cold is gone,” she whispered gently, placing a reassuring hand on the insect's head. He twitched slightly, then relaxed somewhat, clearing both his and Ralts' heads somewhat. “Here, would you like a present?” she muttered gently, and suddenly Nincada saw something fall from high in the sky and into the psychic-type's hand.

“Present?” Nincada asked suspiciously, eyeing the object with caution.

“Yes. Something humans give each other, I think,” she said, holding out the item. A rock. A smooth, oval rock.

“This is 'present'?” Nincada asked in awe, captivated by the rock.

“Yes, and it is very special. Mistress Nuria gave it to me, so it must be special.” As she spoke, Ralts could feel tears beginning to form. “I'll give it to you, to remind you that, no matter how cold it is, I promise that I will be here to help you.”

Nincada didn't say anything. The look of complete adoration on his face and the jubilation of his emotions were enough for Ralts to understand. Gently, careful not to damage it, Nincada's pincers slowly pulled the rock from out of Ralts' hand, and under his head.

Ralts kept her hand on the insect's head for a few more seconds, and soon the insect was asleep, his dreams, Ralts knew, calm and peaceful.

Ralts rose steadily, careful not to make a noise, when the sound came crashing down on her:

“There WAS a Legendary, there WAS there WAS there WAAAAS!” Mudkip screeched, stomping in frustration and cracking the ground. Beside her, Ralts saw Nincada stir ever so slightly. Whether it was the heightened emotional state of the water type before her or her protectiveness of Nincada, Ralts took a step forward, much to the surprise of the three arguing Pokemon.

“Look,” she whispered loudly, “Nincada,” and then she saw the sleeping bivalve Pokemon, “and Shellder are sleeping! Shouldn't you all too?”

“I'm trying,” Bayleef said with a sneer, “but these two morons-”

“Woman!” Zubat said suddenly, “I do take issue with that!”

“Whatever,” Bayleef yawned, turning her head, “I think that anyone who could be so supportive of slavery can't have even a brain cell!”

“Oh, this again,” Mudkip moaned, now bored. “For the last time, we're not slaves!”

“Oh really?” Bayleef rebuked, now looking defiantly into Mudkip's eyes. “Tell me, have you tried to touch your Pokeball?”

“U-um,” Mudkip stammered, now unsure of himself. “No, but... so what‽ Hey, I'll do it now!” And with that he jumped into a run towards the tent. He stopped when he got there, and, with his teeth, as quietly as possible, gently bit onto the zip of the tent opening, pulling it open. For a second he looked in on the two sleeping humans, feeling a pang of anger at Edward. You promised, he thought as he reached down and grabbed the bag with his teeth, you promised I could fight a Legendary, and now everyone's saying I lied!

He quickly got back to the others, Edwards back-pack strap in his jaw, and lay it in front of Bayleef. The bag had been left open, the three Pokeballs at the top. He didn't know why or how, but he felt an urge to the one on the left, as though it were pulling him toward it.

After a second lost to doubt, he quickly swiped a paw in and knocked out his Pokeball.

Nothing happened.

“Ha!” Mudkip gloated to Bayleef's face. “Told you so!”

“Hit it,” Bayleef said, her voice laden with ominous weight. Mudkip, still smiling, walked over to the ball, and, with only a tiny amount of force behind it, brought the paw down on the sphere.

Electricity surged through Mudkip's muscles, sending him flying, twitching spasmodically. He had tried to yell in pain, but his jaw wouldn't obey him, and neither would his vocal chords. All of a sudden the twitching stopped, and the mud-fish lost consciousness.

The only sound was Bayleef's high, merciless laugh, the other two Pokemon too shocked at what had just taken place.

“Do you see now? I tried that on my second day with my last trainer, and that's what I discovered. Humans may speak of equality and united strength, but in the end we are just tools to make themselves stronger. Weapons. They're all the same, spineless, pathetic, stupid-”

Zubat suddenly flew up, rage surging through him, ready to attack Bayleef.

“My master is-” he began, before the shock-waves hit him.

Bayleef was sent flying, rolling and cutting herself of the rough floor, before grinding to a stop. After a second she stood shakily, looking around wildly for the source of the attack, but before her senses could clear Ralts materialised before her, and a blue blast of psychic energy knocked the grass-type to the rock.

“Don't...” Ralts growled, with far more loathing in her voice than the spectating Zubat could possibly have expected to hear, “...you ever, ever say anything like that about Nuria ever again. You understand?”

Bayleef opened her mouth to shout a threatening response, but it died in her throat as she saw the enraged Ralts' face, dark with anger beneath the green bonnet. After a few seconds, Ralts disappeared, instantly re-appeared at the mouth of the tent, where she stood, glaring across the land to the defeated Bayleef.

Nothing more was said between the Pokemon that night. Bayleef's consciousness slowly ebbed out as she tried to comprehend what had just happened, Zubat, his anger dissipated, landed gently after a while and fell to sleep, Mudkip's slightly blackened body lay awkwardly, Nincada stayed dreaming pleasant dreams and Shellder remained motionless on the ground, oblivious to all that had happened.

But Ralts did not sleep that night. She stayed wide awake, standing before the humans' tent like a guardian, watching the dark, clouded sky. She had felt a change come over her mere moments ago, as though a beast had ripped through her heart and taken possession of her body. How was she supposed to stop this?

Nobody must ever disrespect Nuria ever again, she concluded. I'll have to protect her. Which means I must become stronger.

She looked around the island, looking at each boulder in turn. Selecting one at random, she mentally gripped it and willed it to rise. The effort was intense and Ralts could feel sweat already dripping down her face, but the burn was invigorating.

I will become stronger, she vowed, ripping another boulder from the earth. The strain doubled, and the psychic-type gasped in pain, falling onto her hands and knees. Her breathing rapidly became shorter and deeper, the effort ravaging her little body.

And, at the very peak of physical and mental endurance, her skin started to glow bright white...



Chapter 16 - Fragility (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=15425729#postcount=120)

The Great Butler
24th November 2012, 7:12 AM
Chapter 15
The Guardian

The duo said nothing as they walked along the crystal passageway. The events which had just taken place were just too... jarring for Edward to completely grasp. After all those plans and steeled nerves, had they just been... let off the hook?

You could probably do without the first ellipsis, but it doesn't really matter. The sentences get the point across just the same.


Before he knew it they were back to the darker rock tunnel; Edward would have carried straight on had he not seen the quaking collection of pebbles before his feet.

“Master, you live?” Nincada asked in a weak voice, blatant surprise on his face.

Ah, I'd forgotten him. It's understandable he'd want to sit that out.


“Umm, yeah,” Edward said hesitantly, understanding completely why his Pokemon was surprised. Absent-mindedly he fumbled for the hollow Pokeball in his pocket and recalled his bug-type, just before Nincada could open his mouth.

They continued walking in a complete stupor until they reached the rock cavern. The darkness was now absolute, and Edward took only a few steps before he tripped on a small rock, being unaccustomed to the uneven ground . He cussed as he scraped his palms on more rocks, jarring Nuria to her senses.

It just hit me how uncharacteristically quiet she was being until now.


“Go, Ralts,” she mumbled, releasing the white-limbed creature whilst illuminating the chamber. “Take us out of here,” Nuria said as she helped pull Edward to his feet. Edward felt a soft lump of flesh press into his side before the world changed; the landscape was still dark, but a thousand shades lighter, the rocks, ground and ocean all navy blue and thrown into sharp relief. He felt the cool, salty air kick his mind back into motion.

“So,” he said to his friend as she recalled her Pokemon. “That didn't go quite as expected, did it?”

The tension snapped; suddenly Edward and Nuria were in fits of giggles – Edward using a boulder for support whilst Nuria collapsed to the ground, holding her ribs as she racked with laughter. All the relief, the confusion, the suppressed panic was coming out in ways the humans couldn't understand.

You know, this is a completely understandable reaction, if you think about it. There was so much tension and it got resolved in a strange way, so I think laughing is natural.


“What just happened?” Nuria asked during a pause in her giggles. Edward, who had also calmed down, just stayed sitting, looking into space with a bemused expression.

“I think... we were let off?” he said incredulously, his joy swelling as he appreciated their good fortune. After all that worry! he couldn't help but think.

But he could feel his optimism draining slowly, like a small pin-prick letting the air out of a hot-air balloon. Something was scratching at his mind from his subconscious... They are in no way half as welcoming as I.

Yeah, I was wondering when he was going to remember that. Regirock and Registeel are probably going to make up for Regice in spades.


Edward deflated all of a sudden as foreboding eclipsed the happiness he had experienced mere seconds ago. Regice was the nice one. So, the others must be...

“Eddy, what's up?” Nuria asked, her voice piercing his thoughts. He looked up to her face suddenly and tried to animate it with false joy.

“Nothing!” he said, perhaps too exuberantly. Nuria snorted a short chuckle.

“Don't think about the other two, Eddy. What does it exactly mean if Regice said they weren't as 'welcoming' as he was? What are they gonna do, not wave at us? They're all related... or something, so they must be similar in some way! What we should be wondering about, though, is our sleeping arrangements for the night.”

I know I keep saying this, but I love the interaction Edward and Nuria have. They're a very strong pair of protagonists, so they elevate the story simply by being in it.


Edward blinked. Of course! The world was silent: everybody must have left the island. Which meant they were alone, on an island in the middle of the ocean for... how many days had the boat-man said?

"The area was silent" is probably a better way to say that in this context, since you're only speaking of the island and not literally the entire world.



By the time he reached the base Nuria was they, arms out as though to take his burden from him. Just before he could pass it, however, she suddenly snatched something off the top. Edward could hear the sound of un-crumpling paper as Nuria began to talk:

"Nuria was there," not "they."


“It says,” she muttered, bringing the thin scrap of paper closer to her eyes, “'Boy and girl, you never came out from the cave.' Well, way to state the obvious!”

“What else?” Edward asked, not wanting to be kept waiting with the rather heavy package.

“'Because I'm on a tight schedule I can't wait around: sleep in the tent for the night and enjoy the beans. Pack up the tent again in the morning and leave it where you found it. Girl, you have a Ralts. In the morning, use it to get to Slateport.'”

That was certainly generous of him to leave them supplies.



“No clue. Ralts can only Teleport to places she's been before. I don't know why he'd-”

She was suddenly interrupted by the explosion of fabric before her; the tent had suddenly popped up into position, free-standing and sturdy-looking. Edward himself had been pushed backwards onto his back, unhurt yet dazed for a moment. As he sat up he felt something hard under his leg.

“Found the beans,” he said, lifting up the moderately-sized can for Nuria to see.

Okay, that was funny. It really works because of how well they go together.


“You know what, I'm really not hungry,” Nuria said with a yawn as she crawled into the tent. Edward shrugged: he felt the same way – his stomach felt too turbulent for even the thought of eating anything.

“So... time to sleep?” Edward proposed, looking into the moth of the tent. It was far more spacious than the last, he observed with a grin, enough to fit way more than two people! Speaking of which...

The mouth of the tent, you mean?


“Shall we let out our Pokemon again? Just in case...?

“Sure,” she said, and soon all six Pokemon were free. Instantly Zubat and Mudkip shot forward, as though expecting to attack. They stopped short, though, when they realised they were out in the open air amongst friends.

Nice touch showing Zubat and Mudkip unaware of the change in setting and mood. It's consistent with where they were last and what being there caused.


“Where's Regice?” Mudkip pined after a second of looking around, looking at Edward with wide, sparkling eyes.

“Well, it-”

“Master, so you have seen sense! I am most jubilant that you have chosen to spare our lives!”

“Thanks Zubat, but-”

“What's a Regice?” Bayleef interjected. Suddenly all the Pokemon were talking amongst themselves, Mudkip telling stories of massive demons made of ice and Zubat telling anyone who would listen that they were lucky to be alive, with Ralts and Bayleef asking quick questions to the two. Edward prepared himself to shout when he felt a surge of fatigue wash over him – suddenly he couldn't find the energy.

“Look,” Nuria called over the din, barely suppressing another yawn herself, “we'll all talk about it in the morning. Me and Edward are going to sleep now, and you lot can stay up as late as you want, okay?”

Without another word she turned, ignoring the bombardment of questions raining down upon her, and got back into the tent. Before he was subjected to the same treatment, Edward slid in after her.

I don't blame Nuria for her seeming exasperation here. I'd feel the same way.



“Nuria, you awake?” he whispered quietly into the darkness mere moments after coming to this conclusion.

“Yes,” she said in a clear voice, an ounce of frustration indicating that she, too, had trouble sleeping.

“Wanna talk?” he asked, turning to face her even though he couldn't see ten centimetres in front of him.

“Sure,” she said, and the ruffle of material indicated that she too had turned to face him.

They talked about everything and nothing, any and every topic of interest which entered their heads. All except about their journey, or anything to do with the task. About Pokesports, recent (but not too recent) news, school, food, games, gossip, anything which could distract them for the smallest of moments. It was half-way through the discussion over clothes did he feel his eyelids drooping, and, soon, his entire body relaxing. The next morning, he did not even know the last topic of discussion they'd talked about before he'd fallen asleep.

I really like this part. It's nothing major story-wise, but it provides a very nice buildup for their relationship as characters. Their friendship makes me smile.


The six Pokemon were in a circle, some sitting, some lying. Almost all of them were attentive, joining in in what was being said.

“A Legendary Pokemon?” snorted Bayleef sceptically to the bouncing Mudkip opposite her.

“Yeah,” the mud fish said, his demeanour stroppy. “And he said we could fight it! He proooooomiiiiiised!”

“Knave!” the Zubat snarled as he lay on his back. “You have no idea the danger that was upon us!”

“Yeah, yeah,” Mudkip muttered, waving a paw in dismissal, “that's what you think. But who's the one who's weak to ice? Yep, you. I, on the other hand, could have taken it down easily.”

Before Zubat could reply with a venomous comment, Bayleef started loudly:

“Look at the pair of you. Legendary Pokemon are waaaaay too powerful to even approach. Even my trainer wouldn't be so-”

“There was one!” Mudkip barked defiantly. “I could feel it, you know?”

“I concur!” Zubat screeched. “There was a creature of tremendous power, I could sense it!”

Bayleef tutted and turned her head, causing the other two Pokemon to speak louder to try and convince her. Meanwhile, Ralts had stood up and slowly paced over to Nincada, who, to all intents and purposes, looked as inanimate as the rocks surrounding him.

“Was there really?” the psychic type asked quietly, kneeling down in front of the bug. Nincada's eyes suddenly flicked up toward Ralts' head, wide and full of terror.

“So cold,” he whispered hoarsely. “I could feel death, the frost. So cold.”

The Pokemon all have wonderfully distinct personalities and their interaction is excellent. Nincada stands out, though - his sheer terror at what he felt in Regice's cave is so completely unlike all the other Pokemon that you can't help but like him.


Ralts didn't feel comfortable; she could feel the pure fear radiating off the insect, infecting her with its paralysing grip. A soul-crushing sense of foreboding settled upon her, constricting her chest. Glimpses of the ice cave flashed in her mind, long and infinite from the security of the rocks. And at then end... a terrible presence...

“The cold is gone,” she whispered gently, placing a reassuring hand on the insect's head. He twitched slightly, then relaxed somewhat, clearing both his and Ralts' heads somewhat. “Here, would you like a present?” she muttered gently, and suddenly Nincada saw something fall from high in the sky and into the psychic-type's hand.

“Present?” Nincada asked suspiciously, eyeing the object with caution.

“Yes. Something humans give each other, I think,” she said, holding out the item. A rock. A smooth, oval rock.

“This is 'present'?” Nincada asked in awe, captivated by the rock.

“Yes, and it is very special. Mistress Nuria gave it to me, so it must be special.” As she spoke, Ralts could feel tears beginning to form. “I'll give it to you, to remind you that, no matter how cold it is, I promise that I will be here to help you.”

Nincada didn't say anything. The look of complete adoration on his face and the jubilation of his emotions were enough for Ralts to understand. Gently, careful not to damage it, Nincada's pincers slowly pulled the rock from out of Ralts' hand, and under his head.

Ralts kept her hand on the insect's head for a few more seconds, and soon the insect was asleep, his dreams, Ralts knew, calm and peaceful.

Adorable. I hope Ralts and Nincada get more interacting like this; it's like a mother/son bond and it works very well.



“U-um,” Mudkip stammered, now unsure of himself. “No, but... so what‽ Hey, I'll do it now!” And with that he jumped into a run towards the tent. He stopped when he got there, and, with his teeth, as quietly as possible, gently bit onto the zip of the tent opening, pulling it open. For a second he looked in on the two sleeping humans, feeling a pang of anger at Edward. You promised, he thought as he reached down and grabbed the bag with his teeth, you promised I could fight a Legendary, and now everyone's saying I lied!

He quickly got back to the others, Edwards back-pack strap in his jaw, and lay it in front of Bayleef. The bag had been left open, the three Pokeballs at the top. He didn't know why or how, but he felt an urge to the one on the left, as though it were pulling him toward it.

After a second lost to doubt, he quickly swiped a paw in and knocked out his Pokeball.

Nothing happened.

“Ha!” Mudkip gloated to Bayleef's face. “Told you so!”

“Hit it,” Bayleef said, her voice laden with ominous weight. Mudkip, still smiling, walked over to the ball, and, with only a tiny amount of force behind it, brought the paw down on the sphere.

Electricity surged through Mudkip's muscles, sending him flying, twitching spasmodically. He had tried to yell in pain, but his jaw wouldn't obey him, and neither would his vocal chords. All of a sudden the twitching stopped, and the mud-fish lost consciousness.

The only sound was Bayleef's high, merciless laugh, the other two Pokemon too shocked at what had just taken place.

“Do you see now? I tried that on my second day with my last trainer, and that's what I discovered. Humans may speak of equality and united strength, but in the end we are just tools to make themselves stronger. Weapons. They're all the same, spineless, pathetic, stupid-”

Zubat suddenly flew up, rage surging through him, ready to attack Bayleef.

“My master is-” he began, before the shock-waves hit him.

Bayleef was sent flying, rolling and cutting herself of the rough floor, before grinding to a stop. After a second she stood shakily, looking around wildly for the source of the attack, but before her senses could clear Ralts materialised before her, and a blue blast of psychic energy knocked the grass-type to the rock.

“Don't...” Ralts growled, with far more loathing in her voice than the spectating Zubat could possibly have expected to hear, “...you ever, ever say anything like that about Nuria ever again. You understand?”

Bayleef opened her mouth to shout a threatening response, but it died in her throat as she saw the enraged Ralts' face, dark with anger beneath the green bonnet. After a few seconds, Ralts disappeared, instantly re-appeared at the mouth of the tent, where she stood, glaring across the land to the defeated Bayleef.

Here, once again, is where your excellent characterization is important. An intense sequence like this couldn't have worked without it.


Nothing more was said between the Pokemon that night. Bayleef's consciousness slowly ebbed out as she tried to comprehend what had just happened, Zubat, his anger dissipated, landed gently after a while and fell to sleep, Mudkip's slightly blackened body lay awkwardly, Nincada stayed dreaming pleasant dreams and Shellder remained motionless on the ground, oblivious to all that had happened.

But Ralts did not sleep that night. She stayed wide awake, standing before the humans' tent like a guardian, watching the dark, clouded sky. She had felt a change come over her mere moments ago, as though a beast had ripped through her heart and taken possession of her body. How was she supposed to stop this?

Nobody must ever disrespect Nuria ever again, she concluded. I'll have to protect her. Which means I must become stronger.

She looked around the island, looking at each boulder in turn. Selecting one at random, she mentally gripped it and willed it to rise. The effort was intense and Ralts could feel sweat already dripping down her face, but the burn was invigorating.

I will become stronger, she vowed, ripping another boulder from the earth. The strain doubled, and the psychic-type gasped in pain, falling onto her hands and knees. Her breathing rapidly became shorter and deeper, the effort ravaging her little body.

And, at the very peak of physical and mental endurance, her skin started to glow bright white...

The path Ralts is going down could be a dangerous one...

This is a great chapter. I love how you do characterization; every single character stands out as an individual and when you bring them together, they have wonderful interaction. I enjoy reading this story just for the characters alone, but the plot is great too, so it's just all around a great read.

Scaldaver
26th November 2012, 6:14 PM
Thanks for all the help Butler! I'm well into the next chapter now, so hopefully we'll see the next on here in at least two weeks!

Scaldaver
30th November 2012, 9:01 PM
Here's the next chapter, with many(x10^10) thanks to The Great Butler for the Beta!

So, without further ado:

Chapter Sixteen
Fragility

“OW!”

“Eddy! Sorry, but you were waaaay to close.”

Edward stayed doubled sideways on the tent floor, massaging his throbbing ribs. Did he hear something break?

“Look, can I help how I move when I'm asleep?”

“Yeah, but you were literally this close. Imagine what you'd do if you woke up to see a face like a centimetre in front of you!”

“Well, I wouldn't knee them in the chest, for one thing.”

“Look, I apologised, all right?”

Suddenly something collided into Edward's back, jolting him up straight.

“What happened?!” Mudkip yelled as Edward's hands now slid around to his back to assess the damage. Something definitely didn't feel right.

“I kneed him in the chest,” Nuria explained calmly. Mudkip's features sharpened as though to growl at Nuria, but, with a hazardous glance to the tent mouth, he turned to Edward.

“So, umm, are you okay?” Mudkip asked, his voice low.

“Not really,” Edward grumbled as he struggled to sit up. Just as he was half-way up he felt a sudden jolt, and he collapsed again, biting his lip to stop him from screaming out loud. Even so, a piercing note leapt from his throat. Dear God that hurt, he mentally screamed as his face contorted in agony.

“Eddy?!” Nuria snapped in concern. “Are you okay?”

What the hell do you think, witch, I was just kneed in the chest, tackled in the back, as I tried to get up I screamed a bit and right now I'm rolling around in agony. How the bloody hell do you think I am?

The pain, however, only permitted him a strangled “No.”

And suddenly something else was in the enclosed space, but Edward thought he must be hallucinating. It resembled a six-year-old girl, with a white tutu and long straight hair. On the other hand, her legs and hair were green, her face was paper-white and she had two red half-disks protruding on the right and left sides of her head.

“Ralts?” Nuria half-shrieked as the Pokemon advanced onto Edward. Wait, Edward thought in the tiny centre of his mind that wasn't screaming mindless obscenities, that's not Ralts.

The Pokemon knelt by Edward and put its white, two-fingered hands together, as though in prayer. As brilliant silver dust began to accumulate around the hands, Edward noticed subtle features of the Pokemon: the small, shy way in which it moved, the way it positioned itself right opposite Nuria. Ooooh, he realised all of a sudden, as the creature brought its hands apart, causing silver glitter to fall towards Edward's head, she evolved.

The powder just touched his face-

And suddenly he shot upright, his eyes flying open to absorb the interior of the hospital room. It was a wide space: the wall space was dominated by shelves with brightly-coloured hard-back books and various cabinets held strange-looking contraptions, stacks of paper, or more books.

“Careful,” Nuria said next to him, causing Edward to jump a little. He turned, and saw her sitting curled up in a green arm-chair by his bed, just by his pillow.

“What-?”

“No, really, be careful. The doctor said the painkillers might make you feel energised, but you're still hurt. Lie back down.”

Not bearing to be slow, Edward dropped back into the bed, shaking the frame slightly.

“Okay then, so what happened? Last thing I remember was all this glitter.”

“Umm, okay, where to begin?” she asked herself as she balanced her chin on her palm. “Well, Mudkip ran into you, which seemed to have hurt an awful lot, so Ra- I mean Kirlia appeared and used Heal Pulse on you. You fell asleep because apparently Pokemon heal moves are knock out humans, and we took you here.”

“Where is here exactly, anyway?” Edward asked, looking out of the small window which gave the view of the grey sky. “Petalburg Hospital, right?”

Nuria opened her mouth to answer, but the words got lost as her eyes narrowed.

“Ah. Petalburg. That would've made more sense.”

“Wait, so this isn't Petalburg? Then where am I?”

Nuria's look of confusion was suddenly replaced by a countenance of proud superiority.

“Well, let's just say I worked out what the old man said in his note.”

Edward bit his lower lip. Then it was his turn to narrow his eyes, though this time in suspicion.

“Wait, so this is Slateport? But how-?”

“Well, my friend,” she said, crossing her arms whilst keeping the victorious smile on her lips, “it was really quite simple.”

“But Ralts can't Teleport to places she hasn't been yet, so...”

“Well, I was thinking about that while I recalled all the Pokemon and hauled you out of the tent. I was thinking that if Kirlia just had to see where we had to go, we could simply fly there.”

Nuria paused, as though to give Edward time to applaud her brilliance. Instead he looked at her blankly.

“I don't follow your logic.”

Nuria smiled deviously and leaned in.

“Well, I reasoned if she Teleported up and in the direction of Slateport, then, as we fell a bit, Teleport upwards again in the same direction until we got there...”

“Oooh,” Edward said, a drop of genuine awe in his voice as he imagined Nuria and Kirlia materialising around the cloudy sky whilst lugging around his limp body.

“Yeah, there was definitely great skill and intelligence on my part,” she said, leaning back with her hands behind her head, grinning proudly.

“Yeah,” Edward said, grinning slightly himself, “like the skill required to wind someone with their knee at the break of dawn. Or to cross an ocean by Teleport-air flying when you could've got me to a hospital in seconds.”

“You know, one day you'll look back on this and laugh. Latias and Latios? No problem. Regice? Cool. A thirteen year-old girl and a level sixteen Mudkip? You're hospitalised for two weeks.”

“Two weeks?!”

“Ha! See? Funny! No, seriously you've been out for a day, that's all, I swear.”

Edward took a deep breath, calming the frogs which had just leapt in his stomach.

“I hate you.”

“Love you, Eddy.”

Edward stayed down, craning his neck to look around the room.

“So,” he said after a brief silence, “Ralts evolved.”

“You know, one of these days I might even see one of my Pokemon evolve,” she said through clenched teeth, although she didn't look or sound too angry.

“What level is she?”

“You know, it's strange. Last time I checked she was around level seventeen, but when I checked this morning she was level twenty-six.”

Edward whistled.

“Wow, overpowered much. How exactly...?”

“Ha, you're just jealous. Well, remember how I gave her the rock to use when she was out so she'd always train?”

“Um,” he said, thinking back, “yes, I think so.”

“Well outside the tent there were all these craters littered around. I think she had been lifting boulders in her spare time.”

Before Edward could comment, the door slid open and the doctor entered, her eyes fixed on the chart before her.

“Your spine's recovered; it was lucky that Kirlia healed that or you'd be in a wheelchair right about now. It didn't heal the rib though; it wasn't focusing on that. Luckily the water didn't stay in your lungs for too long, or sorting that out would have been tricky. The hospital's Pokemon fixed it up, but with the Pokemon healing you've already had, a full recovery of the rib would've been dangerous. You shouldn't do any strenuous activity for a few weeks, but you'll be fine. Just try not to run too often, stay out of danger, et cetera. I apologise for my hurrying but there have many incidents due to the flash floods. You may leave, and I hope you don't come back.” With that, the nurse just turned and left, the door closing quietly behind her.

“Well, that was...” Edward murmured.

“Yeah,” Nuria agreed, before looking up at the clock. “Hey look, it's nearly ten! Shall we leave now?”

“But,” Edward said, sweeping his arms down his body, “I am hospitalised and all drugged up. And,” he looked under his covers, “I am wearing a hospital gown.”

Nuria suddenly jumped up.

“Well, your clothes are in the corner,” she said, pointing over to his nicely folded clothes ear the radiator whilst she headed for the door.

Hang on...

“Hey, Nuria,” he called as she got further away, “what was that she said about water?”

Nuria had reached the door and was now standing on the other side of it, poking her head around the corner.

“Well, when Kirlia and I were Teleporting around the sky...see, it was pretty hard to hold on, and gravity made us fall the whole time...so, well, by mistake I.....I, umm... dropped you.”

Edward shot up for the third time in recent days, but before he could even say anything, Nuria had shut the door behind her.

Dropped me. She... she dropped me. Does she want me dead?

His eyes skimmed over the room again, passing the clock.

An entire day of my journey, lost. Because Mudkip was trying to help me.

The clock ticked past another minute.

Well, what am I doing wasting more of my time? he suddenly thought, and swivelled his legs around off the bed. With his entire body leaning forward, he felt a strain on his chest – not sharp, but dulled and throbbing. How much are the painkillers suppressing the pain? Or is this as bad as it gets?

Edward pushed himself up slowly, testing the strength of his upper body. He couldn't help but wince – I can see how this is going slow me down.

Suddenly a vision popped into his head – him, being pursued by Legendaries, completely incapable of running. Then again, I'd never be able to run from a Legendary anyway, would I? It didn't fully help his already-weakened nerves, but he could at least justify not being an invalid for his mission.

There was another thing, he realised, which had begun to eat away at him. I am so easy to break. He knew it was childish to think himself invincible and all-powerful, but what Nuria had said earlier had really hit home – he'd been incapacitated by a lowly thirteen year old girl and his own, unevolved starter Pokemon. If it's so easy for them to hospitalise me then-

Edward tried to kick the thought out of his head, and went on to do what he'd learnt two nights previously – to devote his whole mind to one specific, unrelated task.

Now standing, he took a few steps – he was surprised to find he couldn't feel as much pain as before. Maybe it's just getting up and down, he thought hopefully. Unless it will feel worse after the painkiller wears off, the cynical part of his mind sneered.

He was half-way to his drying clothes when he felt something behind him. He didn't know what, but there was definitely something. It was just like with Regice and Latios and Latias; it was as though all the world was concentrating in that particular piece of space behind him.

By reflex he suddenly turned, and was met by a sharp spike of pain in his ribs. His arm went to his side, covering his chest, but when he looked up the pain was all forgotten.

Hovering just above his head, two metres above the floor, sat a small, green, elf-like creature, with two short antennae with blue tips. It's wide, attentive eyes seemed to look deep into Edward's very soul, as it seemed not to register the flagrant shock on his face. Edward knew what this creature was straight away. It was one of his favourite Legends he heard as a child.

Celebi.

The Legend seemed to have finished appraising him, as it closed its eyes and shook its head, frustration evident in its tired expression.

“Still too early!” a pure, reverberating voice echoed from everywhere.

And then it was gone.

Edward stood, transfixed, staring into empty space before him.

Please tell me that was the painkillers.


Next (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=15707040#postcount=125)

Rotomknight
1st December 2012, 2:14 AM
Please tell me it wasn't the painkillers!

How does celebi fit into this when I thought they were focusing on hoenn legendaries.

Scaldaver
2nd December 2012, 8:19 AM
How does celebi fit into this when I thought they were focusing on hoenn legendaries.

Hmm, then I hope Celebi was a nice surprise! I swear I did say previously that it was an all-legendary inclusive story...

The Great Butler
3rd December 2012, 8:57 AM
Here's the next chapter, with many(x10^10) thanks to The Great Butler for the Beta!

That's a lot of thanks, so you're welcome! XD;


So, without further ado:

Chapter Sixteen
Fragility

“OW!”

“Eddy! Sorry, but you were waaaay to close.”

Edward stayed doubled sideways on the tent floor, massaging his throbbing ribs. Did he hear something break?

“Look, can I help how I move when I'm asleep?”

I can't put my finger on what you changed here from the beta copy, but it appears to read more clearly that they are still in the tent.


“Yeah, but you were literally this close. Imagine what you'd do if you woke up to see a face like a centimetre in front of you!”

“Well, I wouldn't knee them in the chest, for one thing.”

“Look, I apologised, all right?”

Suddenly something collided into Edward's back, jolting him up straight.

“What happened?!” Mudkip yelled as Edward's hands now slid around to his back to assess the damage. Something definitely didn't feel right.

“I kneed him in the chest,” Nuria explained calmly. Mudkip's features sharpened as though to growl at Nuria, but, with a hazardous glance to the tent mouth, he turned to Edward.

I notice Nuria is unusually calm right here. Feels like she's gone through a bit of character growth.


“So, umm, are you okay?” Mudkip asked, his voice low.

“Not really,” Edward grumbled as he struggled to sit up. Just as he was half-way up he felt a sudden jolt, and he collapsed again, biting his lip to stop him from screaming out loud. Even so, a piercing note leapt from his throat. Dear God that hurt, he mentally screamed as his face contorted in agony.

“Eddy?!” Nuria snapped in concern. “Are you okay?”

Ah, there's the familiar Nuria again.


What the hell do you think, witch, I was just kneed in the chest, tackled in the back, as I tried to get up I screamed a bit and right now I'm rolling around in agony. How the bloody hell do you think I am?

The pain, however, only permitted him a strangled “No.”

The idea of Edward only being able to say much less than he wants to strikes me as creative for some reason. Minor, but creative nevertheless.


And suddenly something else was in the enclosed space, but Edward thought he must be hallucinating. It resembled a six-year-old girl, with a white tutu and long straight hair. On the other hand, her legs and hair were green, her face was paper-white and she had two red half-disks protruding on the right and left sides of her head.

“Ralts?” Nuria half-shrieked as the Pokemon advanced onto Edward. Wait, Edward thought in the tiny centre of his mind that wasn't screaming mindless obscenities, that's not Ralts.

The Pokemon knelt by Edward and put its white, two-fingered hands together, as though in prayer. As brilliant silver dust began to accumulate around the hands, Edward noticed subtle features of the Pokemon: the small, shy way in which it moved, the way it positioned itself right opposite Nuria. Ooooh, he realised all of a sudden, as the creature brought its hands apart, causing silver glitter to fall towards Edward's head, she evolved.

This is a curious way for them to discover Kirlia's evolution. It's a lot more creative than I was expecting.


The powder just touched his face-

And suddenly he shot upright, his eyes flying open to absorb the interior of the hospital room. It was a wide space: the wall space was dominated by shelves with brightly-coloured hard-back books and various cabinets held strange-looking contraptions, stacks of paper, or more books.

That's a very jarring transition, but given the context, it works.


“Careful,” Nuria said next to him, causing Edward to jump a little. He turned, and saw her sitting curled up in a green arm-chair by his bed, just by his pillow.

“What-?”

“No, really, be careful. The doctor said the painkillers might make you feel energised, but you're still hurt. Lie back down.”

Not bearing to be slow, Edward dropped back into the bed, shaking the frame slightly.

“Okay then, so what happened? Last thing I remember was all this glitter.”

“Umm, okay, where to begin?” she asked herself as she balanced her chin on her palm. “Well, Mudkip ran into you, which seemed to have hurt an awful lot, so Ra- I mean Kirlia appeared and used Heal Pulse on you. You fell asleep because apparently Pokemon heal moves are knock out humans, and we took you here.”

That makes sense about why Heal Pulse had that effect on him. Also, Edward and Nuria's relationship comes across very well here.


Nuria's look of confusion was suddenly replaced by a countenance of proud superiority.

“Well, let's just say I worked out what the old man said in his note.”

Edward bit his lower lip. Then it was his turn to narrow his eyes, though this time in suspicion.

“Wait, so this is Slateport? But how-?”

“Well, my friend,” she said, crossing her arms whilst keeping the victorious smile on her lips, “it was really quite simple.”

And this is why I love Nuria. She just has so much personality.


“But Ralts can't Teleport to places she hasn't been yet, so...”

“Well, I was thinking about that while I recalled all the Pokemon and hauled you out of the tent. I was thinking that if Kirlia just had to see where we had to go, we could simply fly there.”

Nuria paused, as though to give Edward time to applaud her brilliance. Instead he looked at her blankly.

“I don't follow your logic.”

Nuria smiled deviously and leaned in.

“Well, I reasoned if she Teleported up and in the direction of Slateport, then, as we fell a bit, Teleport upwards again in the same direction until we got there...”

“Oooh,” Edward said, a drop of genuine awe in his voice as he imagined Nuria and Kirlia materialising around the cloudy sky whilst lugging around his limp body.

I still find this strategy of hers a little unbelievable, but it does make more sense than it did before now. Nuria is certainly one who would be creative enough to do something like this.


“Yeah, there was definitely great skill and intelligence on my part,” she said, leaning back with her hands behind her head, grinning proudly.

“Yeah,” Edward said, grinning slightly himself, “like the skill required to wind someone with their knee at the break of dawn. Or to cross an ocean by Teleport-air flying when you could've got me to a hospital in seconds.”

“You know, one day you'll look back on this and laugh. Latias and Latios? No problem. Regice? Cool. A thirteen year-old girl and a level sixteen Mudkip? You're hospitalised for two weeks.”

“Two weeks?!”

“Ha! See? Funny! No, seriously you've been out for a day, that's all, I swear.”

Edward took a deep breath, calming the frogs which had just leapt in his stomach.

“I hate you.”

“Love you, Eddy.”

Oh God I love these two so much.


Edward stayed down, craning his neck to look around the room.

“So,” he said after a brief silence, “Ralts evolved.”

“You know, one of these days I might even see one of my Pokemon evolve,” she said through clenched teeth, although she didn't look or sound too angry.

You know, I hadn't realized that about Nuria's evolutions, but it's right now that I think about it.



Before Edward could comment, the door slid open and the doctor entered, her eyes fixed on the chart before her.

“Your spine's recovered; it was lucky that Kirlia healed that or you'd be in a wheelchair right about now. It didn't heal the rib though; it wasn't focusing on that. Luckily the water didn't stay in your lungs for too long, or sorting that out would have been tricky. The hospital's Pokemon fixed it up, but with the Pokemon healing you've already had, a full recovery of the rib would've been dangerous. You shouldn't do any strenuous activity for a few weeks, but you'll be fine. Just try not to run too often, stay out of danger, et cetera. I apologise for my hurrying but there have many incidents due to the flash floods. You may leave, and I hope you don't come back.” With that, the nurse just turned and left, the door closing quietly behind her.

Talk about bedside manner, huh?

I like that the weather disasters were actually addressed here in a way. It's not bad, but I do find it a little unusual for there to be such an obviously global-scale disaster going on, but the story's focus is so narrow. I kind of like it as a narrative choice, though, to focus on a small group of people in a much bigger picture.


“Well, that was...” Edward murmured.

“Yeah,” Nuria agreed, before looking up at the clock. “Hey look, it's nearly ten! Shall we leave now?”

“But,” Edward said, sweeping his arms down his body, “I am hospitalised and all drugged up. And,” he looked under his covers, “I am wearing a hospital gown.”

Edward's speech sounds strangely formal for this scene, I think.


Nuria suddenly jumped up.

“Well, your clothes are in the corner,” she said, pointing over to his nicely folded clothes ear the radiator whilst she headed for the door.

Hang on...

“Hey, Nuria,” he called as she got further away, “what was that she said about water?”

Nuria had reached the door and was now standing on the other side of it, poking her head around the corner.

“Well, when Kirlia and I were Teleporting around the sky...see, it was pretty hard to hold on, and gravity made us fall the whole time...so, well, by mistake I.....I, umm... dropped you.”

Edward shot up for the third time in recent days, but before he could even say anything, Nuria had shut the door behind her.

Dropped me. She... she dropped me. Does she want me dead?

I still find the whole way they traveled to Slateport a little hard to swallow, especially now that we know Nuria dropped him in the ocean. How did she get him out?


His eyes skimmed over the room again, passing the clock.

An entire day of my journey, lost. Because Mudkip was trying to help me.

The clock ticked past another minute.

Well, what am I doing wasting more of my time? he suddenly thought, and swivelled his legs around off the bed. With his entire body leaning forward, he felt a strain on his chest – not sharp, but dulled and throbbing. How much are the painkillers suppressing the pain? Or is this as bad as it gets?

Edward pushed himself up slowly, testing the strength of his upper body. He couldn't help but wince – I can see how this is going slow me down.

Suddenly a vision popped into his head – him, being pursued by Legendaries, completely incapable of running. Then again, I'd never be able to run from a Legendary anyway, would I? It didn't fully help his already-weakened nerves, but he could at least justify not being an invalid for his mission.

He could always get help from his Pokemon.

In all seriousness, though, Edward's introspection is nice to see.


There was another thing, he realised, which had begun to eat away at him. I am so easy to break. He knew it was childish to think himself invincible and all-powerful, but what Nuria had said earlier had really hit home – he'd been incapacitated by a lowly thirteen year old girl and his own, unevolved starter Pokemon. If it's so easy for them to hospitalise me then-

Edward tried to kick the thought out of his head, and went on to do what he'd learnt two nights previously – to devote his whole mind to one specific, unrelated task.

Now standing, he took a few steps – he was surprised to find he couldn't feel as much pain as before. Maybe it's just getting up and down, he thought hopefully. Unless it will feel worse after the painkiller wears off, the cynical part of his mind sneered.

This comment about his realizing his own fragility (nice callback to the chapter title, by the way) is obviously going to be important, if you ask me.


He was half-way to his drying clothes when he felt something behind him. He didn't know what, but there was definitely something. It was just like with Regice and Latios and Latias; it was as though all the world was concentrating in that particular piece of space behind him.

By reflex he suddenly turned, and was met by a sharp spike of pain in his ribs. His arm went to his side, covering his chest, but when he looked up the pain was all forgotten.

Hovering just above his head, two metres above the floor, sat a small, green, elf-like creature, with two short antennae with blue tips. It's wide, attentive eyes seemed to look deep into Edward's very soul, as it seemed not to register the flagrant shock on his face. Edward knew what this creature was straight away. It was one of his favourite Legends he heard as a child.

Celebi.

The Legend seemed to have finished appraising him, as it closed its eyes and shook its head, frustration evident in its tired expression.

“Still too early!” a pure, reverberating voice echoed from everywhere.

And then it was gone.

Edward stood, transfixed, staring into empty space before him.

Please tell me that was the painkillers.

I don't think it was the painkillers, Edward. I think you just had your next Legendary encounter, and something weird is going on.

Okay, so even though there wasn't much action in this chapter, I think it's a very, very good one. What we got instead of action was character development and interaction, which I loved. Nuria was just great in this chapter, and Edward wasn't so bad either. Two thumbs up.

Sidewinder
3rd January 2013, 8:34 PM
Here's my review for chapter 16. So sorry it's taken me so long. Been in a little bit of a funk lately, but I should now be back to reviewing regularly :)


“Yeah, but you were literally this close. Imagine what you'd do if you woke up to see a face like a centimetre in front of you!”

I probably would have reacted the same way lol.


mean Kirlia appeared and used Heal Pulse on you. You fell asleep because apparently Pokemon heal moves are knock out humans, and we took you here.”

I'd love to see you expand on that more in future chapters. It's always really excited me to see the different way's Pokemon moves and or medicine can be used on humans and what adverse effects may arise. Glad to see you're of the same persuasion


You're hospitalised for two weeks.”

She's such a smart alick sometimes. Love it


Your spine's recovered; it was lucky that Kirlia healed that or you'd be in a wheelchair right about now. It didn't heal the rib though; it wasn't focusing on that. Luckily the water didn't stay in your lungs for too long, or sorting that out would have been tricky. The hospital's Pokemon fixed it up, but with the Pokemon healing you've already had, a full recovery of the rib would've been dangerous. You shouldn't do any strenuous activity for a few weeks, but you'll be fine. Just try not to run too often, stay out of danger, et cetera. I apologise for my hurrying but there have many incidents due to the flash floods. You may leave, and I hope you don't come back.” With that, the nurse just turned and left, the door closing quietly behind her.

That was actually quite well done. I love when fics delve into medical aspects and the problems and restrictions that go along with them. After what Edward went through, there is obviously going to be ramifications and I'm glad you dont subscribe to the theory I see sometimes on boards where characters suffer injuries with no lasting effects. Nice realistic touch.


Edward said, sweeping his arms down his body, “I am hospitalised and all drugged up. And,” he looked under his covers, “I am wearing a hospital gown.”

Is there any particular reason why you're using 'I am' so often instead of 'I'm'? It doesn't bother me too much, but reading it so quickly back to back makes it a tad bit tedious. You dig?


Please tell me that was the painkillers.

It's almost as if he wants to wish Celebi away even though it is something he wants. Hell, knowing Edward I feel like he would look for any possible reason to force himself to believe it was real. Interesting.

All in all, pretty solid chapter. Not too much happened to me, but you showed your original flair with the medical explanation and dabbled in some pretty nice description so I enjoyed myself quite a bit. Once again, sorry it took me so long to get around to this; but I'm glad I did and make sure to let me know when the next one goes up

Scaldaver
15th February 2013, 10:39 PM
These pauses are getting longer and more inconsistent, eh? I'll hardly win anything at this rate... no matter! Anywho, here's the new post, and I hope people are still reading this. I'll probably get some done over the summer. Probably.

Chapter 17
Battles


After sluggishly getting dressed and popping to the toilet, Edward slowly descended the marble stairs, gripping the handrail as tightly as possible. Why is everything so damn painful?

Finally getting to the bottom floor, Edward had to stop for a second to catch his breath. He couldn't breathe as deeply without a sharp jab of pain, so took as small a breaths as his ribs could allow. Taking one last little gulp of air, he looked toward the door; sure enough, Nuria was standing there, both his and her rucksack slung over each of her shoulders.

“Thought I'd lighten your load,” Nuria said with a smile, holding out five miniaturised Pokeballs and a pink Pokedex. He took and pushed them into his pocket, then raised his eyebrows as Nuria produced a small, clear tube containing many white pills. “Painkillers,” she elaborated, “from the nurse.”

“Thanks. So,” he said, stepping through as the automatic door opened, “where are we going?”

He looked around as he got outside. He'd never been to Slateport before, but had it been a sunnier day it would have been easy to imagine this as a popular tourist destination: beyond the light, tiled paths that wound around various market places, a great expanse of golden sand lay undisturbed by the beach.

But there was also a ghostly quality about the area: the various stalls looked rotting and abandoned, litter lay undisturbed and sopping wet along the pavement, and the golden sand looked depressingly filthy next to the still, grey ocean, there being no sunlight to brighten the place up.

“Well, unless you want to compete in those ridiculous contests or Battle Tents, we should head towards Mauville – that's where the next gym is.”

“Yeah, Mauville,” Edward said distractedly, still looking over the depressingly drab landscape. Nuria saw the look in his eyes and looked around as well.

“You know,” she said softly, “the news said, globally, roughly a million people have died. Through floods and rock slides. That's why we're doing this... to help people.”

A key word punctured Edward's chest. Millions? Thousands, he could imagine, but... millions. Edward's mind became a kaleidoscope of horrors – families drowning, children, newly orphaned, screaming for their parents whilst mothers and fathers mourned their losses.

What's wrong with me?

Edward knew that, merely a few days previous, news like that would have floored him, made him sob for hours on end. But, even though he knew he should, that he wanted to, no tears sprang to his eyes. Am I really that self-centered now? That I only feel sad if something directly affects me or- NO!

“Nuria!” Edward gasped suddenly, as though all the air had been knocked from his lungs, “my parents, your-”

“No, no they're fine,” Nuria said quickly, trying to sport a supportive smile. It looked odd on her. “I checked with my Mum about Littleroot – everything's okay, although a bit soggy.'

Edward tried to calmly breath in, but he couldn't steady his raging pulse. Mum...Dad... He knew it was childish – the apprehension that one's parents were invincible. But suddenly it became apparent to him – if the world died, so would they. After all they did for me...

He steeled his mind, trying to remember his sanity tactic from before – to distract himself. To leave no room in his head to think about the future. To flit seamlessly between random thoughts, so he wouldn't even remember choosing to forget. But how? The whole city looked dying, and-

“Wanna know something exciting though?” Nuria asked, almost shattering the negative mood. Instantly Edward latched onto the conversation, trying his best to absorb every syllable. “They say the route to Mauville is clogged with trainers. You know what that means?”

In spite of himself, Edward found himself smiling ever so slightly. Battles. Actual Trainer battles.. Shocked, Edward realised that he's only had three proper trainer battles: twp against Gym Leaders and one against Nuria. How have I only had three? That had been the reason for him starting his journey, anyway. And hadn't Latias said he should train his Pokemon, to make them a better, more cohesive unit?

“Yeah,” he said, his smile more pronounced. “By the way, I saw Celebi in my room upstairs.”

Nuria looked at Edward.

“Seriously?”

“Yeah. Did the nurse say anything about hallucinations? Because of the painkillers?”

“No, nothing like that.” Nuria crossed her arms. “So, what did it say? Or did it just pop in to say hi?”

“It was strange. It just looked at me and said 'Still too early', then disappeared.”

Nuria narrowed her eyes in thought.

“You're oddly calm about this, considering everything.”

“Yeah. Maybe I'm getting used to it.”

“So, a time-travelling Legendary looks at you then says 'too early'? You know what that means?.”

“That I'll meet it one day in the future? My thoughts exactly,” Edward agreed, nodding.

“But when?” Nuria asked.

“You know what? With all that's going on... I don't think I feel scared about an encounter with Celebi. It didn't seem scary or angry. A nice change, you know?”

“But still,” Nuria continued, “it is looking for you in a particular time. Aren't you curious to know when this is going to happen?”

“Sort of. Maybe the painkillers just null my sense of curiosity or something. I'm more excited, just at the moment, about doing some actual battles. Considering we have two gym badges, we haven't really done that much training.”

“Yeah,” Nuria said, and, taking his arm, started walking around the Pokemon centre to the path beside it. He was thankful for this; walking still hurt slightly, and with Nuria holding him up slightly he could almost feel nothing. Almost.

They began walking in silence, looking at the city which, due to the bleak, grey sky, looked dull and dead. Besides a harbour, museum and workshop, Edward spotted the contest hall at the opposite of the city, it's red, ribboned exterior doing little to make the scene any more pleasant.

Out of the few things he and Nuria had agreed on in their childhood, their views on contests were the same. Stupid. A complete distraction from the badge-quest. They'd both watch contests on the TV, laughing at the ridiculously dressed individuals who pranced around like fairies while pompously groomed Pokemon would jump up and down. They'd turn the sound off and commentate to make each other laugh.

After a while of walking, Edward found a way of walking which took the pain off his rib – it was awkward, yes, but it helped, and soon he was able to walk without Nuria, and he was even able to take his rucksack back.

As the forest came into view, Edward thought of something.

“What else did the news say?” he asked.

“Actually, quite a lot – some interesting stuff really. First, it's become illegal to use weather-affecting moves like Sunny Day and Rain Dance-”

“Why?” Edward asked, startled at that news.

“I'm getting to that! Anyway, they banned those moves because the effect is immense. Literally, a Ninetales somewhere in Orre used Sunny Day, and the intense heat that followed nearly hospitalised an entire city until the effect wore off. Then some bright spark in Kanto got his Milotic to use Rain Dance, and just like that," she clicked her fingers, "Pallet Town is submerged.”

“Whoa,” was all Edward could say.

“Whoa indeed,” Nuria nodded, “so now anybody who uses these moves will be arrested for at least a month. People still do it – the idiots who don't read the news or the rebels who think they're cool.”

“Any reason for this?” Edward asked, still dumbfounded.

“Some random scientists in Unova think that, without Kyogre or Groudon keeping balance, any weather effect has a comparably larger effect. Well, it's just a theory. The other thing,” she said, picking up the pace – Edward hadn't even noticed them slowing, “is that Terrence Pancel declared that he'd hunt down whatever killed Groudon and Kyogre and kill it.

“Suppose that's a reasonable threat, considering he's 'The marvelous champion of the Hoenn Region, his bravest feat being the capture of the legendary Moltres',” Edward intoned sarcastically, imitating a news broadcaster. Nuria didn't seem to see the funny side.

“More like a publicity stunt if you ask me. And a stupid one, considering what we know. The last bit, not really that important, is that they've started to monitor Rayquaza.”

“Oh. Wait, what?” Edward's senses sharpened as the comment hit him.

“Yeah. You know how the stories go: that Rayquaza would calm the fight between Groudon and Kyogre?”

“Sure,” Edward nodded impatiently, hoping she would hurry up. Who in Hoenn hasn't grown up hearing that legend?

“Well, you know in the picture books it would appear and the sky would clear? Well, grey clouds cover the whole world – except for one moving hole in the sky. Someone enhanced the image and saw the first ever photographic image of Rayquaza. So they're tracking it – making it like a TV show.”

“That's... that's just weird. They're just... filming it? Like it's a circus act? But it's running – can't people see it doesn't want to be followed?”

“Since when has anyone cared about stuff like that? According to the news, there has been lots of criticism from the RSPCP to leave it alone, but nobody really cares. They're too excited, I mean, it's a real, living legendary – for most people its a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

“'For most people',” Edward echoed dryly. Nuria let out a snort, and they continued walking for a while in silence, and in the distance Edward could make out the wide, beaten track saturated with people and Pokemon, the latter jumping around and running at each other. Far-off muffled sounds of battle soon evolved into the shouts of attacks, commands and encouragement.

Just before entering the entering the route boundary, Nuria stopped and turned to Edward.

“What do you say, meet back here at the end of the day?”

“Seriously?” Edward asked, grinning with excitement. “What about Mauville?”

“Meh – Mauville can wait – we'll stand a better chance again the gym if we train more.”

“Sure, meet here at five?” Edward asked, already taking a step into the route. Almost as soon as he had crossed the threshold of the route, a red-faced, sweaty young boy bounded over to him.

“I challenge you to a battle!” he yelled, holding out his Pokeball. Edward smiled at the challenge, reaching into his pocket for a Pokeball. Now this is what it's all about. This is why I wanted to be a trainer.

Deciding on a Pokeball, he withdrew and threw it high into the air – he was immediately met by a sharp pain in his torso, but he managed not to show it. The sphere burst open at the peak of its arc, and white light burst forth onto the floor, quickly solidifying into a surprised looking Nincada. However, at the sight of all the other trainer, he steeled himself and scratched his dark-brown claws.

As the Pokeball bounced back into Edward's outstretched hand, Edward's opponent bit his lip in indecision. Then, breaking into a smile, he picked out a Pokeball and threw it forward, a Combusken releasing itself onto the damp, dirt path. It hopped on the spot, its clawed feet scratching at the earth as its long, clawed arms flailed around. Edward's eyes widened. Is everyone's starter evolved but mine?

Jolting him back to his senses, Edward took out his Pokedex and looked up his party page. He read off their levels – Nincada – 16, Zubat – 13, Mudkip – 16. It should have evolved by now! Edward thought exasperatedly.

“Ember!” the trainer shouted, and instantly the beak-faced fire-type spat flaming hot pieces of ash at the insect, causing Nincada to shriek and jump back. That looked like it hurt, Edward noted, just before shouting his first command.

“Stay safe! Use Dig!”

Nincada, having just been digging on pure rock, dug through the soft earth with no problem, and instantly disappeared through the ground.

“Focus Energy!” the trainer yelled, the shade of his face getting darker red. Combusken planted its feet flat on the ground and bunched its hands into fists, the claws somehow managing not to pierce its skin. It brought it's arms up, and tensed its entire body, growling as it did.

“Now!” Edward roared, and immediately the ground below the fire-type collapsed, causing it to squawk, stumble and fall. “Fury Swipes!” Edward called, and Nincada's burst from the ground became a flurry of violent slashes with his front claws, mauling the fowl's legs. Edward noticed how the ferocity of each slash grew in savagery. He also hacked away for much longer than usual – He looks... angry? Edward realised. There was also something different with his eyes – they were narrowed, and his sharp jaws were bared.

“Double Kick it away!” Edward's enemy shouted hurriedly, and suddenly Nincada was sailing through the air before scraping to a rough stop on the damp earth. Before Edward could utter another command, however, Nincada jumped back up and turned towards the fire-type.

“Ember!” the trainer shouted, a clear tone of excitement in his voice.

“Dig,” Edward said in desperation, and Nincada disappeared below ground just before the embers hit.

Okay, what to do? Edward thought. He quickly looked at the Combusken, knowing there was little time left until its trainer ordered another attack. It looked a lot more attentive than it had at the beginning of the battle – obviously the bug was not as easy to squash as it expected. It was no longer jumping around, but stood guarded, glaring at the floor, one long arm covering a wound on its left leg, only partially hiding the crimson blood against the orange feathers.

Hmm...

“Nincada, see that cut on Combusken's leg? Use Dig and aim for that!”

Nincada little head suddenly popped its little head from the newly-dug hole, nodded in understanding, then disappeared downwards again.

“Bulk Up!” the other trainer shouted, his grin disappearing slightly. Combusken began flexing its muscles, its eyes and beak closed in concentration.

Nincada once again broke through the ground beneath the young fowl Pokemon, tackling it in its left leg.

“Fury Swipes,” Edward called, trying to keep his voice even. This is so cool!

“Jump away and use Ember!” his opponent shouted before Nincada could leave more than three scratches. His Pokemon crouched to jump, but it was obvious from its scrunched-up face that the exertion took its toll. Even so, the fire-type bounded out of the insect's reach, stumbled slightly, opened its mouth, and red-hot embers began streaking out at Nincada. Nincada screamed and tried to roll out of the way, but all the Combusken had to do was turn its head or take a step forward to continue the fiery onslaught. Nincada simply wasn't fast enough to escape.

“Dig! Dig!” Edward screamed, but to no avail. Either Nincada couldn't hear him, or he physically couldn't tunnel any further. After a few more seconds of obvious agony, Nincada collapsed, his energy spent.

Combusken stopped immediately, and began taking long, deep breaths, one arm slung across its chest and the other clutched to its leg. It didn't look too hurt, though, more tired. How many battles has that thing fought today? Edward wondered as he recalled Nincada.

“Mudkip, go!” Edward shouted, and soon the energetic blue pup burst out of the white plasma, crouching into a concentrated pouncing pose. “Water Gun!”

Mudkip stood up straight then leaned back, as though summoning his energy for the blast.

“Double Kick!” the other trainer yelled in desperation, and the Combusken ran forward, wincing every time it landed on its left leg.

Edward couldn't help but smirk. Does he really think Combusken could attack before Mudkip does?

If anything, all the Combusken's advance did was hurt the fowl further and bring it closer to Mudkip. Mudkip's Water Gun, far more powerful than anything the mud fish had done previously, knocked the Combusken flying, landing in a crumpled heap. It steadily got up, quaking, but another short burst of water put the fire-type down for good.

Edward's opponent stomped his feet a few times in frustration and recalled his Pokemon. Then he produced something Edward hadn't expected – an Ultra Ball. Dear God what's in that? Edward thought in both horror and amazement. Surely he hasn't been able to catch anything that powerful this early on?

The ball opened, and the Pokemon formed. Edward's jaw dropped.

The beast towered above the little Mudkip. Its blue skin was almost fully covered with navy hair that formed a mane around its face. Its strong forepaws, half furry and half blue and yellow striped, ended with great, clawed paws, like its hind legs. The most terrifying feature, however, was its eyes – yellow pupils and iris with the surrounding red 'whites'.

How the heck did he manage to catch a Luxray? Edward thought in awe.

The lion reared itself to full height and bellowed an ear-splitting roar at the comparatively insignificant Mudkip. The mud-fish stood, petrified, for a few seconds, taking in the scene of nightmares, then yelped and ran away to behind Edward's legs were he lay shaking, hiding his eyes with his front paws. Edward noticed many of the other trainers and Pokemon stopping their battles and looking over to the beast.

“Umm, you win, I give in,” Edward said nervously, eyeing the titan whilst thinking of his water and flying-type Pokemon.

“Yeah, thought you would,” the other trainer crowed, beaming wildly at all the attention he was receiving. The Luxray growled softly at the sound of its trainer's voice – and not in a kind way. It looked nervously around it, as though ashamed to be there. Still smiling confidently, the trainer withdrew the electric-type and walked over to Edward. “Good battle,” he said, a little too pompously for Edward's taste.

“Yeah,” Edward said evenly, extending a hand which the trainer promptly ignored.

“How did you...?” Edward left the question hanging in the air.

“Luxray? Caught her sleeping on the Route 102.”

“Sleeping? And it said it didn't mind being caught?” Edward asked, flummoxed. The other trainer winked knowingly at Edward.

“Well, does it really matter if I didn't educate her on certain trainer rules?” he asked, a hint of mirth in his voice.

Edward couldn't react for a second. The mere thought of what Bayleef would say – would do silenced him. He knew what the trainer had done was illegal, and shamefully so, but what could he actually say?

“Yeah,” Edward laughed awkwardly, eyeing the trainer, trying to recall his every feature. He made to leave, but suddenly remembered something. “Umm, so, what did you say your name was again? So I can search for your Pokedex number and ring you and stuff.”

“Tony Flitch. And you?”

“Edward. Edward Lance. Well, uh, see you later, Tony Flitch,” he tried to smile naturally but assumed it looked too false, and quickly hurried away, taking little time to recall Mudkip.

He looked around, skirting around battles trying to find Nuria. Although his movement was severely limited by the pains in his chest, he soon saw her near a copse of trees, training her eyes like an eagle on the surrounding plethora of battlers. When Edward appeared she jumped slightly, as though being shocked from a daze. Without giving her time to speak, Edward quickly muttered what had happened. For a few moment after she stood looking into thin air, her eyes narrowed in anger

“Should I sick Bayleef on him?” Nuria asked, a hint of hope in her voice.

“That's what I thought,” Edward chuckled, before returning to a more serious attitude. “Just remember his name in case I forget, all-right? Then we can tell someone at a Pokemon Centre.”

“Sure, sure,” she said, losing interest and waving him away, “we can do that later. Tonight. Before then, we'll just have fun, okay?”

Edward bit his lip. Naturally, he felt unsure about leaving this... this criminal free to win battles with a basically stolen Pokemon.

But the sounds of battling were so inviting. The commands of trainers, the roars of a multitude of Pokemon. Taking in the wonderful sight, he spotted a portable healing machine. His moral dilemma forgotten, Edward quickly walked over to the machine with long strides, winding around the fierce battles raging around him, all the while keeping an eye on potential rivals.

***

Hiding in the inky blackness of shadows behind a rotting tree stump, a small, unnoticed creature trained its eyes on the young boy skirting around the medley of Pokemon and humans.

“Almost,” it muttered to nobody.

And then it was gone.



Next (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=15758619#postcount=135)

Dragonfree
17th February 2013, 4:38 AM
Hey. Nice to see you still at it. Some brief comments on the last couple of chapters; it's late and I don't have the energy right now to do a very thorough or structured review:

I still like how Edward and Nuria interact, although I kind of cringe when he starts mentally calling her a 'witch' or whatever.

While having characters be properly hospitalizably injured instead of just chugging on even as they go through things that would kill a normal human being several times over is cool, you kind of went too far in the other direction here. Nuria kneeing him while lying down should probably not break his rib, nor should Mudkip be able to break his spine simply by charging into his back, unless he has severe osteoporosis or something.

I'm pretty sure hospital painkillers are generally opioids, which are sedatives - Edward should definitely not be energized by them.

A doctor and a nurse are two different things, so when you describe the woman who comes in to explain Edward's injuries as a doctor and then moments later as a nurse, it doesn't really make sense.

The paragraph you have on contests in chapter 17 seems really extraneous - you only have Edward notice the Contest Hall in the first place so that he can mentally explain that contests are stupid and then move on to the next thing and never bring it up again. Without knowing what was actually going through your head, I can't help but get the feeling you were just voicing your own opinion on contests there. Either way it doesn't really seem to belong. If Edward and Nuria thinking contests are stupid becomes relevant later, you can bring it up then.

Edward seems a bit oddly overenthusiastic about battling here, especially what with it managing to seriously distract him from an instance of Pokémon abuse that he clearly finds disturbing. It's not like he hasn't battled for weeks or something (unless you meant to imply a timeskip between chapters 16 and 17), so it shouldn't be quite this important to him, I would think.

I'm intrigued by how you're actually doing stuff with the Pokémon treatment issue; Bayleef is turning out eerily right about things. Hope this is leading into further tackling of the matter.

Scaldaver
17th February 2013, 7:46 PM
Hey. Nice to see you still at it. Some brief comments on the last couple of chapters; it's late and I don't have the energy right now to do a very thorough or structured review:

I still like how Edward and Nuria interact, although I kind of cringe when he starts mentally calling her a 'witch' or whatever.

While having characters be properly hospitalizably injured instead of just chugging on even as they go through things that would kill a normal human being several times over is cool, you kind of went too far in the other direction here. Nuria kneeing him while lying down should probably not break his rib, nor should Mudkip be able to break his spine simply by charging into his back, unless he has severe osteoporosis or something.

I'm pretty sure hospital painkillers are generally opioids, which are sedatives - Edward should definitely not be energized by them.

A doctor and a nurse are two different things, so when you describe the woman who comes in to explain Edward's injuries as a doctor and then moments later as a nurse, it doesn't really make sense.

The paragraph you have on contests in chapter 17 seems really extraneous - you only have Edward notice the Contest Hall in the first place so that he can mentally explain that contests are stupid and then move on to the next thing and never bring it up again. Without knowing what was actually going through your head, I can't help but get the feeling you were just voicing your own opinion on contests there. Either way it doesn't really seem to belong. If Edward and Nuria thinking contests are stupid becomes relevant later, you can bring it up then.

Edward seems a bit oddly overenthusiastic about battling here, especially what with it managing to seriously distract him from an instance of Pokémon abuse that he clearly finds disturbing. It's not like he hasn't battled for weeks or something (unless you meant to imply a timeskip between chapters 16 and 17), so it shouldn't be quite this important to him, I would think.

I'm intrigued by how you're actually doing stuff with the Pokémon treatment issue; Bayleef is turning out eerily right about things. Hope this is leading into further tackling of the matter.

Thanks for the quick response, Dragonfree! I would have replied this morning, but stuff dragged on (I did, incidentally, see (and hate) Pokemon heroes for the first time).

Once again, your refreshing logic has me scurrying back to edit, but for those who have read it, here are some explanations:

1) The medical and anatomical inconsistencies can't really be explained well by me, so imma say that Nuria just happened to hit Edward just hard enough at the right angle, and Mudkip, raring for attack, had smashed into Edward as he meant to charge a foe, so that could do damage, if not break, a back, in my personal opinion (and if it hit at juuust the right angle....

It was really wise of you to a)think about the medicine and correlation to effects and b) know exactly what sort of medicine would be used in this situation, but I'm afraid that I'm going to have to play the 'different world, different medicine' rule. For all us, the audience, know, the medicine was made from Tropius fruit or Bellosom leaves...

I'll happily correct the nurse/doctor mistake (better just make her a doctor).

2) The part about contests.........no comment*shifty eyes*

3) Darn...I should have made it more obvious that he meant trainer Pokemon battles (after all, he's only taken on Nuria and two gym leaders, incidentally giving Edward a current 66.7% win rate). Anywho, it's nothing a little editing won't solve...

Overall, thank you for commenting, and thank's especially for all those nominations for my story -I'm really glad people like this.

Deadly.Braviary
20th February 2013, 7:37 AM
Gotta say, Scaldy, this is shaping up to be on par with other epicfics I've read, like The Thinking Man's Guide to Destroying the World. That's one of the best fics I've ever read so that's some pretty high praise from me ;) Also, Scaldaver sounds like a combination of scald (as in burned by boiling hot water) and cadaver (a corpse). Maybe you could kill someone off by having them drown in boiling hot water? I have a gruesome and demented mind.

Back on topic:


Millions? Thousands, he could imagine, but... millions. Edward's mind became a kaleidoscope of horrors – families drowning, children, newly orphaned, screaming for their parents whilst mothers and fathers mourned their losses.

Sh*t got way more real.

I like the touch of amping up Sunny Day and Rain Dance all the way, so that they're now quite possibly the most powerful moves known to mankind. But shouldn't Rayquaza be able to Air Lock all this? Oh wait, it ran - flew? - away. Damn, there goes my plothole.

Nitpick:
[I]After all they did for me...[/]

You forgot to close the italics tag properly.


The other thing,” she said, picking up the pace – Edward hadn't even noticed them slowing, “is that Terrence Pancel – you know, Hoenn's champion - declared that he'd hunt down whatever killed Groudon and Kyogre and kill it.

The bolded bit seems a little info-dumpy. Perhaps you could just have her say that Terrence Pancel said he'd kill the legend-killer, and then Edward would gasp and say, "Hoenn's champion? The one with a big, freakin' Moltres?", or something like that. Also, the sentence is missing a double-quote to end Nuria's lines.

That aside, I worry for the poor man. Really. Moltres against something that decimated Groudon and Kyogre and scared Rayquaza into hiding? I pity Moltres.

By the way, the legend-killer seems an awful lot like Deoxys.

Also, I love how Edward is pissed with the public for going, "Ooh, Rayquaza! Never mind that it's actually scared out of its mind, let's track it down and make a documentary!" Rayquaza is already pretty nervy from the killer, so what happens when a bunch of humans with cameras come running after it? I anticipate severe consequences ...


“Yeah,” Edward said evenly, extending a hand which the trainer promptly ignored.

“How did you...?” Edward left the question hanging in the air.

Technically, you don't have to change paragraphs if the same person is speaking, so this bit could all be merged like so:


“Yeah,” Edward said evenly, extending a hand which the trainer promptly ignored. He began to ask, “How did you...?”, but left the question hanging in the air.

I liked that you show not all trainers are scrupulous. I read it as a subtle way of pointing out that the way the games show trainers is overly black-and-white (ironically, Black and White are more mature in this respect by making Team Plasma hypocrites), but I assume you were simply trying to show that some people are *ssholes.


The beast towered above the little Mudkip, it's blue skin almost fully covered with navy hair, forming a mane around its face

Again, this bit feels a little unwieldy, and the 'it's' should be an 'its'. Try lopping off the bit after 'the little Mudkip' and making that a new sentence: "Its blue skin was almost fully covered with navy hair, that formed a mane around its face." The tense switch midway is also a little disconcerting.

Aside from those grammar-y nitpicks (I'm a Grammar Nazi, what do you expect?), this was another good chapter. The first part is cleverly disguised exposition, and the battle in the second part was fantastically well-written. Especially the way you made Luxray so menacing, seeing as it's a pretty awesome Pokemon. Plus, Edward is still conflicted inside. We'll see how this gets resolved later on, perhaps?

And finally, that intriguing little sign-off was possibly one of the most minimalistic cliffhangers I've seen. No build-up at all. Just a forest, a tree stump, and an unknown Pokemon. That single word - "almost" - hits you with so much power. It's like being whacked in the face with a car. I assume that was Celebi?

Whoever the mystery Pokemon was, this fic continues to reek of intrigue and suspense. The epic-ness is finally beginning to show itself, and now I leave you with a slightly modified quote from God only knows who: Oh, Scaldy, Scaldy, what a tangled web of legends you weave.

Scaldaver
20th February 2013, 11:49 AM
Gotta say, Scaldy,

Aaaaaand you're my new best friend :)


this is shaping up to be on par with other epicfics I've read, like The Thinking Man's Guide to Destroying the World. That's one of the best fics I've ever read so that's some pretty high praise from me ;) Also, Scaldaver sounds like a combination of scald (as in burned by boiling hot water) and cadaver (a corpse). Maybe you could kill someone off by having them drown in boiling hot water? I have a gruesome and demented mind.

Hmm, Ihaven't read that fic, but thanks for the praise! Scaldaver was originally the name of the main Protagonist in a story I'd like to write before I realised 'v's were fairly overused and the name sounded too stereotypical (I intened the 'Scal' to both mean 'scale' and 'scald').

Back on topic:




I like the touch of amping up Sunny Day and Rain Dance all the way, so that they're now quite possibly the most powerful moves known to mankind. But shouldn't Rayquaza be able to Air Lock all this? Oh wait, it ran - flew? - away. Damn, there goes my plothole.

Yeah, I always toyed with the idea of these moves actually doing something better than affecting move powers. I always thought 'Shouldn't these moves screw with the ecosystem? What if someone uses Sunny Day in the Arctic, would the world flood?'.


Nitpick:

You forgot to close the italics tag properly.


Corrected.


The bolded bit seems a little info-dumpy. Perhaps you could just have her say that Terrence Pancel said he'd kill the legend-killer, and then Edward would gasp and say, "Hoenn's champion? The one with a big, freakin' Moltres?", or something like that. Also, the sentence is missing a double-quote to end Nuria's lines.

Never thought about that before. I'll make suitable changes.


That aside, I worry for the poor man. Really. Moltres against something that decimated Groudon and Kyogre and scared Rayquaza into hiding? I pity Moltres.

There's always that little vain guy in power, isn't there?


By the way, the legend-killer seems an awful lot like Deoxys.

How so?


Also, I love how Edward is pissed with the public for going, "Ooh, Rayquaza! Never mind that it's actually scared out of its mind, let's track it down and make a documentary!" Rayquaza is already pretty nervy from the killer, so what happens when a bunch of humans with cameras come running after it? I anticipate severe consequences ...

*Cackles maniacally*



Technically, you don't have to change paragraphs if the same person is speaking, so this bit could all be merged like so:

I'll not sure whether or not to take you up on that suggestion. I just wanted to make it seem like a new topic was introduced.... I'll re-read and decide.




I liked that you show not all trainers are scrupulous. I read it as a subtle way of pointing out that the way the games show trainers is overly black-and-white (ironically, Black and White are more mature in this respect by making Team Plasma hypocrites), but I assume you were simply trying to show that some people are *ssholes.

Well, one of my main objectives of this fic is to break down stereotypes, and I'm glad it's working for everybody!




Again, this bit feels a little unwieldy, and the 'it's' should be an 'its'. Try lopping off the bit after 'the little Mudkip' and making that a new sentence: "Its blue skin was almost fully covered with navy hair, that formed a mane around its face." The tense switch midway is also a little disconcerting.

OOh, sorry, that is rather ugly. I'll change it.


Aside from those grammar-y nitpicks (I'm a Grammar Nazi, what do you expect?), this was another good chapter. The first part is cleverly disguised exposition, and the battle in the second part was fantastically well-written. Especially the way you made Luxray so menacing, seeing as it's a pretty awesome Pokemon. Plus, Edward is still conflicted inside. We'll see how this gets resolved later on, perhaps?

And finally, that intriguing little sign-off was possibly one of the most minimalistic cliffhangers I've seen. No build-up at all. Just a forest, a tree stump, and an unknown Pokemon. That single word - "almost" - hits you with so much power. It's like being whacked in the face with a car. I assume that was Celebi?

Whoever the mystery Pokemon was, this fic continues to reek of intrigue and suspense. The epic-ness is finally beginning to show itself, and now I leave you with a slightly modified quote from God only knows who: Oh, Scaldy, Scaldy, what a tangled web of legends you weave.

Thanks for all the compliments! The new chapter should be out soon, so I hope you enjoy that too!

I'd also like to say that, as of this being written, the views are OVER NINETHOUSAAAAAAAAND! *WOOHOO!*

T-Bolt
20th February 2013, 1:59 PM
In my opinion, any fic with a legendary killer is awesome.

I couldn't find any errors when I read through the chapter. However after a great amount of theorizing and research, I was able to discover the identity of the legendary killer-

A genetically modified Magikarp! =)

Just kidding. But the identity has really got me stumped. It's probably an original species or a psychopathic Arceus. Or was it inspired by the silver surfer, from fantastic four?




Anyway, could I be added to the PM list?

Doryuzu
20th February 2013, 2:58 PM
Chapter 3

Here for the Review Game again!

The murderer looked down toward its recently dead quarry. A tear rolled down its cheek.

“I am so sorry,” it said, nothing other than sincerity in its voice.

It turned once. And vanished.
I think it would just have been awesome if you spent more time on this piece of, what I assume to be, cryptic foreshadowing. It was really short and snappy, while it's true I think it's good you didn't add fluff for the sake of length, possibly maybe really get into the details and depth of things with this scenes would have been more enticing for the reader. It would hype up the reader for the future reveal of what this just mean, while I'm somewhat interested I really think you could do more with this scene to peak my interest more than what you did.


High above, in the open air, the rain began to fall.
There really is no need for the "the" in "the rain." I personally would just say rain began to fall since it makes the sentence less wordy. Watch out for little moments like that, it makes your description and words flow better.


He was surprised to see the dark, swirling mass of the rain clouds obscuring the sun.More unneeded "the"s.


The rain began to fall.



A Pokemon Centre.
Center*


“...and after such an eruption both Larvaridge and Fallarbor Town are now encased in lava. "Lavaridge."


An archorman sat at a desk with camera footage of the carnage behind him. "Anchorman."


Bright orange molten rock was streaming down
Remember to use commas with items in a series, "Bright, orange, molten rock....."


Bright orange molten rock was streaming down from Mount Chimney, grey and white ash filling the air above as a torrential downpour fell from the swirling clouds above. At the base of the mountain the lava had pooled and filled up most of the valleys around. As the rain lashed the pyroclastic flow it vaporised, rising as steam, creating a fog. In one area the lava was being buffeted by sandstorm as the slow flowing liquid's heat formed glass crystals in the sand dunes. The shot changed to the lava rolling gradually into the water near Fallarbor Town, vaporising the liquid on contact. The shot changed again, to the sight of a hundred far-off flying types soaring into the distance. The reporter raised his voice, knocking Edward out of his stupor.
Remember, "vaporizing" is how it's suppose to be spelled. Also is there anyway this description can be delivered without it coming off as a block of info-dump? While it's not a huge cause for concern and might not be relevant to your current skill level since this is just Chapter 3 I'm reviewing and you have released a far more immense amounts of chapters, that's just something I wanted to point out.


Flecked in cooling rock and dripping wet at the same time was a massive creature on its stomach, dinosaur like with blood red plating. Between the chinks formed a black pattern, but lava had flown up so many of the seams that the pattern had become almost indiscernible. Massive jutting spikes shot out from the sides of its neck, lower chest and tail. At the end of the tail, which was stuck in position high above the creature were blood red razors, each sharper than the next. Upon its head were similar red razors, and one of the creature's gargantuan arms with cleaver-like claws hung suspended at its side. The other was submerged in the molten stew, as was its face. Same thing here, it just comes off as listing. While there's nothing wrong with listing once in a while in my opinion, intermixing description and detail with general things works better without unengrossing(Not a word :P) the reader from what else you have going on.



He'd only ever seen pictures, artist's impressions, but somehow he knew this was the real thing. There could be no doubt that this was the ancient Continent Pokemon. Yet it was lunacy, impossible to believe. What sort of creature could have possibly does this?

Edward looked outside again, in want of any other fitting action. The deluge. Of course. Ancient tales dictated that Groudon had a nemesis. An equal. A titan of the sea, that made the oceans of the world by causing continuous and unending rain that could flood the world. But, the tale dictated, Groudon balanced this by intensifying the sun's rays, causing drought. Together they kept the world's weather in balance.

And now Groudon was... was... gone....He couldn't bear to think about it.I think this would all have a bigger impact and be better if you showed it rather than told. Nothing wrong with telling in drab scenes or scenes that aren't relevant to the story at hand but having some dialogue between Edward and Nuria or reading both of the kids' internal thoughts so we can see them weigh in on Groudon would have been better imo.


It was a solid set-up chapter, we get to see how Chikorita is connecting with her trainer to an extent at the beginning. I still find it awfully peculiar that Nuria would get a Chikorita in Hoenn of all places. Burch just so happens to have a Chikorita? I really would have liked some justification for just why exactly he would have a Johto-specific starter to give away to a new trainer. It does seem like you just wanted Nuria to have a Chikorita for the sake of having a Chikorita. While there's nothing wrong with a little more detail on that would have been nice, just my two-cents. Ralts, rare in Hoenn? :P Seems weird they would be rare since Ralts hail from Hoenn and I figured they would be a normal Pokemon to see around the area. I guess it makes sense they would be rare in the sense they're a minimal species but not rare in the sense that you would, for-say, find a wild Cyndaquil in Hoenn. Luxio packs in Hoenn? The Shift really does seem to have added some diversity to the area, I still can't believe so many Ralts were killed off by Luxio though.

We get our first piece of foreshadowing of a capture that will work as a foil to Mudkip's weaknesses. Same thing regarding the two Hoenn Legendaries, I'm still curious what you've got planned for the future and how Nuria and Edward will change as characters(or remain the same) from this point on.

Scaldaver
20th February 2013, 5:58 PM
In my opinion, any fic with a legendary killer is awesome.

Brofist!


I couldn't find any errors when I read through the chapter. However after a great amount of theorizing and research, I was able to discover the identity of the legendary killer-

[SPOILER=???] A genetically modified Magikarp! =)

Damn you *quickly reworks plot* There, that's better...


Anyway, could I be added to the PM list?

Sure thing!

Hey, Doryuzu, thanks for the review! I don't have much time to go through each point fully here, but I'll try to:

Thanks for pointing out all the typos (although we spell it 'vaporising' here in England) and helpful suggestions on reworking sentences!

The excessive use of 'the' in the first bit you mentioned is due to me trying to highlight the clouds etc, and I think it works fairly well. You're right in the other cases, though, so I will go back and double check.

About the info-dumping - that's actually the aim, as lots of information is being piled up due to this being a TV show watched (i.e, cameras change viewpoint alot).

The Chikorita's appearance is explained in Chapter 1, actually. Why exactly did you only review chapter three? Just curious.

Anyways, thanks alot for all the help, Doryuzu, and I hope you keep reading!

The Great Butler
21st February 2013, 8:38 AM
Chapter 17
Battles


After sluggishly getting dressed and popping to the toilet, Edward slowly descended the marble stairs, gripping the handrail as tightly as possible. Why is everything so damn painful?

Finally getting to the bottom floor, Edward had to stop for a second to catch his breath. He couldn't breathe as deeply without a sharp jab of pain, so took as small a breathes as his ribs could allow. Taking one last little gulp of air, he looked toward the door; sure enough, Nuria was standing there, both his and her rucksack slung over each of her shoulders.

That should be "breath."


“Thought I'd lighten your load,” Nuria said with a smile, holding out five miniaturised Pokeballs and a pink Pokedex. He took and pushed them into his pocket, then raised his eyebrows as Nuria produced a small, clear tube containing many white pills. “Painkillers,” she elaborated, “from the nurse.”

I like that little gesture of kindness Nuria showed Edward just now.


“Thanks. So,” he said, stepping through as the automatic door opened, “where are we going?”

He looked around as he got outside. He'd never been to Slateport before, but had it been a sunnier day it would have been easy to imagine this as a popular tourist destination: beyond the light, tiled paths that wound around various market places, a great expanse of golden sand lay undisturbed by the beach.

But there was also a ghostly quality about the area: the various stalls looked rotting and abandoned, litter lay undisturbed and sopping wet along the pavement, and the golden sand looked depressingly filthy next to the still, grey ocean, there being no sunlight to brighten the place up.

This is something I think gives this story a unique quality - the setting you're using. It's important to remember the apocalyptic events going on, and that description of Slateport's ghostly qualities captures it perfectly.


“Well, unless you want to compete in those ridiculous contests or Battle Tents, we should head towards Mauville – that's where the next gym is.”

“Yeah, Mauville,” Edward said distractedly, still looking over the depressingly drab landscape. Nuria saw the look in his eyes and looked around as well.

“You know,” she said softly, “the news said, globally, roughly a million people have died. Through floods and rock slides. That's why we're doing this... to help people.”

A key word punctured Edward's chest. Millions? Thousands, he could imagine, but... millions. Edward's mind became a kaleidoscope of horrors – families drowning, children, newly orphaned, screaming for their parents whilst mothers and fathers mourned their losses.

That is heavy, and it did hit me with the kind of impact I think you intended, but wouldn't global weather disasters on this scale kill even more than that? Tens of millions, even?

But maybe we just haven't gone that far yet.

The emotions here are something I like. Nuria's attempts to comfort Edward and his attempts to cope with the scope of the disasters especially stand out.


What's wrong with me?

Edward knew that, merely a few days previous, news like that would have floored him, made him sob for hours on end. But, even though he knew he should, that he wanted to, no tears sprang to his eyes. Am I really that self-centred now? That I only feel sad if something directly affects me or- NO!

"self-centered," though I think I know why you wrote it the way you did.


“Nuria!” Edward gasped suddenly, as though all the air had been knocked from his lungs, “my parents, your-”

“No, no they're fine,” Nuria said quickly, trying to sport a supportive smile. It looked odd on her. “I checked with my Mum about Littleroot – everything's okay, although a bit soggy.'

Edward tried to calmly breath in, but he couldn't steady his raging pulse. Mum...Dad... He knew it was childish – the apprehension that one's parents were invincible. But suddenly it became apparent to him – if the world died, so would they. After all they did for me...

He steeled his mind, trying to remember his sanity tactic from before – to distract himself. To leave no room in his head to think about the future. To flit seamlessly between random thoughts, so he wouldn't even remember choosing to forget. But how? The whole city looked dying, and-

The writing rambles a slight bit here, but that's okay, because Edward's thoughts are clearly not proceeding in an orderly fashion. In that sense, the way you wrote this section helps the reader tune into what's going on.


“Wanna know something exciting though?” Nuria asked, almost shattering the negative mood. Instantly Edward latched onto the conversation, trying his best to absorb every syllable. “They say the route to Mauville is clogged with trainers. You know what that means?”

In spite of himself, Edward found himself smiling ever so slightly. Battles. Actual Trainer battles.. Shocked, Edward realised that he's only had three proper trainer battles: twp against Gym Leaders and one against Nuria. How have I only had three? That had been the reason for him starting his journey, anyway. And hadn't Latias said he should train his Pokemon, to make them a better, more cohesive unit?

Hmm. The tone shift to a more trainer-oriented one feels a little odd. I wonder if you could somehow connect the previous topic with this one a bit more clearly somehow.


“Yeah,” he said, his smile more pronounced. “By the way, I saw Celebi in my room upstairs.”

Nuria looked at Edward.

“Seriously?”

“Yeah. Did the nurse say anything about hallucinations? Because of the painkillers?”

“No, nothing like that.” Nuria crossed her arms. “So, what did it say? Or did it just pop in to say hi?”

“It was strange. It just looked at me and said 'Still too early', then disappeared.”

Nuria narrowed her eyes in thought.

“You're oddly calm about this, considering everything.”

Nuria's reaction is appropriate here, I think, as Edward does seem to be underplaying Celebi quite vastly.


“Yeah. Maybe I'm getting used to it.”

“So, a time-travelling Legendary looks at you then says 'too early'? You know what that means?.”

“That I'll meet it one day in the future? My thoughts exactly,” Edward agreed, nodding.

“But when?” Nuria asked.

“You know what? With all that's going on... I don't think I feel scared about an encounter with Celebi. It didn't seem scary or angry. A nice change, you know?”

Of course, that probably means that Celebi will turn out to be the exact opposite.


“But still,” Nuria continued, “it is looking for you in a particular time. Aren't you curious to know when this is going to happen?”

“Sort of. Maybe the painkillers just null my sense of curiosity or something. I'm more excited, just at the moment, about doing some actual battles. Considering we have two gym badges, we haven't really done that much training.”

“Yeah,” Nuria said, and, taking his arm, started walking around the Pokemon centre to the path beside it. He was thankful for this; walking still hurt slightly, and with Nuria holding him up slightly he could almost feel nothing. Almost.

I'm kind of glad to get out of that hospital scene, because it was beginning to drag due to Edward underplaying Celebi's importance.


They walking in silence, looking at the city which, due to the bleak, grey sky, looked dull and dead. Besides a harbour, museum and workshop, Edward spotted the contest hall at the opposite of the city, it's red, ribboned exterior doing little to make the scene any more pleasant.

"They were walking in silence."


Out of the few things he and Nuria had agreed with in their childhood, their views on contests were the same. Stupid. A complete distraction from the badge-quest. They'd both watch contests on the TV, laughing at the ridiculously dressed individuals who pranced around like fairies while pompously groomed Pokemon would jump up and down. They'd turn the sound off and commentate to make each other laugh.

Wouldn't "agreed on" sound better than "agreed with?"


After a while of walking, Edward found a way of walking which took the pain off his rib – it was awkward, yes, but it helped, and soon he was able to walk without Nuria, and he was even able to take his rucksack back.

As the forest came into view, Edward thought of something.

“What else did the news say?” he asked.

“Actually, quite a lot – some interesting stuff really. First, it's become illegal to use weather-affecting moves like Sunny Day and Rain Dance-”

“Why?” Edward asked, startled at that news.

“I'm getting to that! Anyway, they banned those moves because the effect is immense. Literally, a Ninetales somewhere in Orre used Sunny Day, and the intense heat that followed nearly hospitalised an entire city until the effect wore off. Then some bright spark in Kanto got his Milotic to use Rain Dance, and just like that," she clicked her fingers, "Pallet Town is submerged.”

I love this idea. It's a great way to expand upon the base of the controllers of the weather being gone.


“Whoa,” was all Edward could say.

“Whoa indeed,” Nuria nodded, “so now anybody who uses these moves will be arrested for at least a month. People still do it – the idiots who don't read the news or the rebels who think they're cool.”

That seems a little arbitrary. I'm surprised that what sounds like a newly-enacted emergency measure seems to have a specific punishment in place already.


“Any reason for this?” Edward asked, still dumbfounded.

“Some random scientists in Unova think that, without Kyogre or Groudon keeping balance, any weather effect has a comparably larger effect. Well, it's just a theory. The other thing,” she said, picking up the pace – Edward hadn't even noticed them slowing, “is that Terrence Pancel declared that he'd hunt down whatever killed Groudon and Kyogre and kill it.

“Suppose that's a reasonable threat, considering he's 'The marvelous champion of the Hoenn Region, his bravest feat being the capture of the legendary Moltres',” Edward intoned sarcastically, imitating a news broadcaster. Nuria didn't seem to see the funny side.

That's a good way to introduce him. I'm sure he'll have a role to play later.


“More like a publicity stunt if you ask me. And a stupid one, considering what we know. The last bit, not really that important, is that they've started to monitor Rayquaza.”

“Oh. Wait, what?” Edward's senses sharpened as the comment hit him.

“Yeah. You know how the stories go: that Rayquaza would calm the fight between Groudon and Kyogre?”

“Sure,” Edward nodded impatiently, hoping she would hurry up. Who in Hoenn hasn't grown up hearing that legend?

“Well, you know in the picture books it would appear and the sky would clear? Well, grey clouds cover the whole world – except for one moving hole in the sky. Someone enhanced the image and saw the first ever photographic image of Rayquaza. So they're tracking it – making it like a TV show.”

First ever photographic image? Is it correct to assume, then, that the events of the games did not happen, meaning none of the player characters ever saw Rayquaza?


“That's... that's just weird. They're just... filming it? Like it's a circus act? But it's running – can't people see it doesn't want to be followed?”

“Since when has anyone cared about stuff like that? According to the news, there has been lots of criticism from the RSPCP to leave it alone, but nobody really cares. They're too excited, I mean, it's a real, living legendary – for most people its a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

Possibly a last-in-a-lifetime opportunity.


“'For most people',” Edward echoed dryly. Nuria let out a snort, and they continued walking for a while in silence, and in the distance Edward could make out the wide, beaten track saturated with people and Pokemon, the latter jumping around and running at each other. Far-off muffled sounds of battle soon evolved into the shouts of attacks, commands and encouragement.

Just before entering the entering the route boundary, Nuria stopped and turned to Edward.

“What do you say, meet back here at the end of the day?”

“Seriously?” Edward asked, grinning with excitement. “What about Mauville?”

“Meh – Mauville can wait – we'll stand a better chance again the gym if we train more.”

“Sure, meet here at five?” Edward asked, already taking a step into the route. Almost as soon as he had crossed the threshold of the route, a red-faced, sweaty young boy bounded over to him.

“I challenge you to a battle!” he yelled, holding out his Pokeball. Edward smiled at the challenge, reaching into his pocket for a Pokeball. Now this is what it's all about. This is why I wanted to be a trainer.

Deciding on a Pokeball, he withdrew and threw it high into the air – he was immediately met by a sharp pain in his torso, but he managed not to show it. The sphere burst open at the peak of its arc, and white light burst forth onto the floor, quickly solidifying into a surprised looking Nincada. However, at the sight of all the other trainer, he steeled himself and scratched his dark-brown claws.

As the Pokeball bounced back into Edward's outstretched hand, Edward's opponent bit his lip in indecision. Then, breaking into a smile, he picked out a Pokeball and threw it forward, a Combusken releasing itself onto the damp, dirt path. It hopped on the spot, its clawed feet scratching at the earth as its long, clawed arms flailed around. Edward's eyes widened. Is everyone's starter evolved but mine?

Jolting him back to his senses, Edward took out his Pokedex and looked up his party page. He read off their levels – Nincada – 16, Zubat – 13, Mudkip – 16. It should have evolved by now! Edward thought exasperatedly.

Interesting. I guess that will be followed up on sometime?


“Ember!” the trainer shouted, and instantly the beak-faced fire-type spat flaming hot pieces of ash at the insect, causing Nincada to shriek and jump back. That looked like it hurt, Edward noted, just before shouting his first command.

“Stay safe! Use Dig!”

Nincada, having just been digging on pure rock, dug through the soft earth with no problem, and instantly disappeared through the ground.

Ooh, I like that bit of consistency regarding what Nincada's been digging through.


“Focus Energy!” the trainer yelled, the shade of his face getting darker red. Combusken planted its feet flat on the ground and bunched its hands into fists, the claws somehow managing not to pierce its skin. It brought it's arms up, and tensed its entire body, growling as it did.

“Now!” Edward roared, and immediately the ground below the fire-type collapsed, causing it to squawk, stumble and fall. “Fury Swipes!” Edward called, and Nincada's burst from the ground became a flurry of violent slashes with his front claws, mauling the fowl's legs. Edward noticed how the ferocity of each slash grew in savagery. He also hacked away for much longer than usual – He looks... angry? Edward realised. There was also something different with his eyes – they were narrowed, and his sharp jaws were bared.

"the ferocity of each slash grew in savagery" is a bit repetitive. You could probably drop the "in savagery" part, making it "the ferocity of each slash grew."


“Double Kick it away!” Edward's enemy shouted hurriedly, and suddenly Nincada was sailing through the air before scraping to a rough stop on the damp earth. Before Edward could utter another command, however, Nincada jumped back up and turned towards the fire-type.

“Ember!” the trainer shouted, a clear tone of excitement in his voice.

“Dig,” Edward said in desperation, and Nincada disappeared below ground just before the embers hit.

You should probably use a word or term other than "embers" to describe the Ember attack. That's just to make sure everyone knows exactly what it is if they do not know what an ember is already.


Okay, what to do? Edward thought. He quickly looked at the Combusken, knowing there was little time left until its trainer ordered another attack. It looked a lot more attentive than it had at the beginning of the battle – obviously the bug was not as easy to squash as it expected. It was no longer jumping around, but stood guarded, glaring at the floor, one long arm covering a wound on its left leg, only partially hiding the crimson blood against the orange feathers.

Hmm...

“Nincada, see that cut on Combusken's leg? Use Dig and aim for that!”

Nincada little head suddenly popped its little head from the newly-dug hole, nodded in understanding, then disappeared downwards again.

“Bulk Up!” the other trainer shouted, his grin disappearing slightly. Combusken began flexing its muscles, its eyes and beak closed in concentration.

Nincada once again broke through the ground beneath the young fowl Pokemon, tackling it in its left leg.

I feel like the other trainer should have done something more to protect Combusken from the weak point on its leg, given that Edward gave him a large advance warning about it.


“Fury Swipes,” Edward called, trying to keep his voice even. This is so cool!

“Jump away and use Ember!” his opponent shouted before Nincada could leave more than three scratches. His Pokemon crouched to jump, but it was obvious from its scrunched-up face that the exertion took its toll. Even so, the fire-type bounded out of the insect's reach, stumbled slightly, opened its mouth, and red-hot embers streaking out at Nincada. Nincada screamed and tried to roll out of the way, but all the Combusken had to do was turn its head or take a step forward to continue the fiery onslaught. Nincada simply wasn't fast enough to escape.

I think you are missing a word between "and" and "red-hot."


“Dig! Dig!” Edward screamed, but to no avail. Either Nincada couldn't hear him, or he physically couldn't tunnel any further. After a few more seconds of obvious agony, Nincada collapsed, his energy spent.

Combusken stopped immediately, and began taking long, deep breaths, one arm slung across its chest and the other clutched to its leg. It didn't look too hurt, though, more tired. How many battles has that thing fought today? Edward wondered as he recalled Nincada.

“Mudkip, go!” Edward shouted, and soon the energetic blue pup burst out of the white plasma, crouching into a concentrated pouncing pose. “Water Gun!”

Mudkip stood up straight then leaned back, as though summoning his energy for the blast.

“Double Kick!” the other trainer yelled in desperation, and the Combusken ran forward, wincing every time it landed on its left leg.

Edward couldn't help but smirk. Does he really think Combusken could attack before Mudkip does?

If anything, all the Combusken's advance did was hurt the fowl further and bring it closer to Mudkip. Mudkip's Water Gun, far more powerful than anything the mud fish had done previously, knocked the Combusken flying, landing in a crumpled heap. It steadily got up, quaking, but another short burst of water put the fire-type down for good.

Edward's opponent stomped his feet a few times in frustration and recalled his Pokemon. Then he produced something Edward hadn't expected – an Ultra Ball. Dear God what's in that? Edward thought in both horror and amazement. Surely he hasn't been able to catch anything that powerful this early on?

The ball opened, and the Pokemon formed. Edward's jaw dropped.

The beast towered above the little Mudkip. Its blue skin was almost fully covered with navy hair that formed a mane around its face. Its strong forepaws, half furry and half blue and yellow striped, ended with great, clawed paws, like its hind legs. The most terrifying feature, however, was its eyes – yellow pupils and iris with the surrounding red 'whites'.

How the heck did he manage to catch a Luxray? Edward thought in awe.

Well now, that was quite the surprise. A Luxray in Hoenn, owned by a trainer who for all appearances looked to be fairly new. Great twist.


The lion reared itself to full height and bellowed an ear-splitting roar at the comparatively insignificant Mudkip. The mud-fish stood, petrified, for a few seconds, taking in the scene of nightmares, then yelped and ran away to behind Edward's legs were he lay shaking, hiding his eyes with his front paws. Edward noticed many of the other trainers and Pokemon stopping their battles and looking over to the beast.

“Umm, you win, I give in,” Edward said nervously, eyeing the titan whilst thinking of his water and flying-type Pokemon.

“Yeah, thought you would,” the other trainer crowed, beaming wildly at all the attention he was receiving. The Luxray growled softly at the sound of its trainer's voice – and not in a kind way. It looked nervously around it, as though ashamed to be there. Still smiling confidently, the trainer withdrew the electric-type and walked over to Edward. “Good battle,” he said, a little too pompously for Edward's taste.

I get the feeling this kid has won a lot of other battles through sheer intimidation with his Luxray like this.


“Yeah,” Edward said evenly, extending a hand which the trainer promptly ignored.

“How did you...?” Edward left the question hanging in the air.

“Luxray? Caught her sleeping on the Route 102.”

“Sleeping? And it said it didn't mind being caught?” Edward asked, flummoxed. The other trainer winked knowingly at Edward.

“Well, does it really matter if I didn't educate her on certain trainer rules?” he asked, a hint of mirth in his voice.

Edward couldn't react for a second. The mere thought of what Bayleef would say – would do silenced him. He knew what the trainer had done was illegal, and shamefully so, but what could he actually say?

Oh yeah, Bayleef would have a field day with this kid.

I get the feeling he might be recurring. The setup of what he did with Luxray begs to be followed up on.


“Yeah,” Edward laughed awkwardly, eyeing the trainer, trying to recall his every feature. He made to leave, but suddenly remembered something. “Umm, so, what did you say your name was again? So I can search for your Pokedex number and ring you and stuff.”

“Tony Flitch. And you?”

“Edward. Edward Lance. Well, uh, see you later, Tony Flitch,” he tried to smile naturally but assumed it looked too false, and quickly hurried away, taking little time to recall Mudkip.

He looked around, skirting around battles trying to find Nuria. Although his movement was severely limited by the pains in his chest, he soon saw her near a copse of trees, training her eyes like an eagle on the surrounding plethora of battlers. When Edward appeared she jumped slightly, as though being shocked from a daze. Without giving her time to speak, Edward quickly muttered what had happened. For a few moment after she stood looking into thin air, her eyes narrowed in anger

“Should I sick Bayleef on him?” Nuria asked, a hint of hope in her voice.

Aha, Nuria, you wouldn't mind doing that, would you?



Hiding in the inky blackness of shadows behind a rotting tree stump, a small, unnoticed creature trained its eyes on the young boy skirting around the medley of Pokemon and humans.

“Almost,” it muttered to nobody.

And then it was gone.

Ooh, neat, a cliffhanger. I wonder if it was Celebi or a different Legendary.

This chapter was pretty good. It was a noticeable change of pace and mood after the preceding chapters. That's actually something I want to bring up: sometimes it feels like the fact that the world is falling apart is pushed slightly to the background, which is a little unusual given the circumstances. There are times when you do tie it into ordinary happenings, such as the ban on weather-altering moves, but I feel like there's just a little bit of inconsistency regarding it.

Scaldaver
27th February 2013, 9:08 PM
That should be "breath."



I like that little gesture of kindness Nuria showed Edward just now.



This is something I think gives this story a unique quality - the setting you're using. It's important to remember the apocalyptic events going on, and that description of Slateport's ghostly qualities captures it perfectly.



That is heavy, and it did hit me with the kind of impact I think you intended, but wouldn't global weather disasters on this scale kill even more than that? Tens of millions, even?

But maybe we just haven't gone that far yet.

The emotions here are something I like. Nuria's attempts to comfort Edward and his attempts to cope with the scope of the disasters especially stand out.



"self-centered," though I think I know why you wrote it the way you did.



The writing rambles a slight bit here, but that's okay, because Edward's thoughts are clearly not proceeding in an orderly fashion. In that sense, the way you wrote this section helps the reader tune into what's going on.



Hmm. The tone shift to a more trainer-oriented one feels a little odd. I wonder if you could somehow connect the previous topic with this one a bit more clearly somehow.



Nuria's reaction is appropriate here, I think, as Edward does seem to be underplaying Celebi quite vastly.



Of course, that probably means that Celebi will turn out to be the exact opposite.



I'm kind of glad to get out of that hospital scene, because it was beginning to drag due to Edward underplaying Celebi's importance.



"They were walking in silence."



Wouldn't "agreed on" sound better than "agreed with?"



I love this idea. It's a great way to expand upon the base of the controllers of the weather being gone.



That seems a little arbitrary. I'm surprised that what sounds like a newly-enacted emergency measure seems to have a specific punishment in place already.



That's a good way to introduce him. I'm sure he'll have a role to play later.



First ever photographic image? Is it correct to assume, then, that the events of the games did not happen, meaning none of the player characters ever saw Rayquaza?



Possibly a last-in-a-lifetime opportunity.



Interesting. I guess that will be followed up on sometime?



Ooh, I like that bit of consistency regarding what Nincada's been digging through.



"the ferocity of each slash grew in savagery" is a bit repetitive. You could probably drop the "in savagery" part, making it "the ferocity of each slash grew."



You should probably use a word or term other than "embers" to describe the Ember attack. That's just to make sure everyone knows exactly what it is if they do not know what an ember is already.



I feel like the other trainer should have done something more to protect Combusken from the weak point on its leg, given that Edward gave him a large advance warning about it.



I think you are missing a word between "and" and "red-hot."



Well now, that was quite the surprise. A Luxray in Hoenn, owned by a trainer who for all appearances looked to be fairly new. Great twist.



I get the feeling this kid has won a lot of other battles through sheer intimidation with his Luxray like this.



Oh yeah, Bayleef would have a field day with this kid.

I get the feeling he might be recurring. The setup of what he did with Luxray begs to be followed up on.



Aha, Nuria, you wouldn't mind doing that, would you?



Ooh, neat, a cliffhanger. I wonder if it was Celebi or a different Legendary.

This chapter was pretty good. It was a noticeable change of pace and mood after the preceding chapters. That's actually something I want to bring up: sometimes it feels like the fact that the world is falling apart is pushed slightly to the background, which is a little unusual given the circumstances. There are times when you do tie it into ordinary happenings, such as the ban on weather-altering moves, but I feel like there's just a little bit of inconsistency regarding it.

Thanks for the chapter review -and such a hefty one it was too! Thanks for all the compliments, and I did make those corrections (ahh, TGB, what would I do without you?). I do see a few of your points - some of the logic here may be stretched slightly (like the definite punishment for new law), but I reckon this would be how people would react (and even then I'm not a very good people person, so...)

The next chapter should be up soon, just after I read through it once or twice more :)

By the way, does anyone have a particular opinion on my new sig?

Scaldaver
1st March 2013, 11:31 PM
Neeeeeew chapter! This'll be the last for a long time, so please enjoy!


Chapter 18
The Companion

“And then,” Nuria snorted in a fit of giggles to a guffawing Edward, “she told her Oddish to do the 'grass thingy'!”

“Oh god,” Edward gasped through the laughter, wiping a tear away from his eye, “why are people s-so incompetent?”

“But that's not the best thing,” Nuria declared, holding her hands up. “The best thing is-” she paused, her giggling preventing words from formulating, “the Oddish...the Oddish turned to her and said,” for a while Nuria could sat nothing as she gripped her sides, “'Who are you?'! Turned out she'd...she'd picked up the wrong Pokemon from the Centre!”

Edward and Nuria erupted in howls of laughter at the amusing story. They were sitting at the rounded, wooden table in their room at the Pokemon Centre, sipping from their cola cans whilst exchanging their battle stories. They both felt light-headed after the day of pure trainer battles, and, even though Edward's ribs were starting to hurt rather painfully, neither of them could stop laughing.

That is, until a third voice began laughing hysterically with them.

It took Edward and Nuria a little while to hear the voice through their own giggling, but after a few seconds it was extremely apparent to both of them, and slowly, like a freight train grinding to a halt, they began to calm down, locking eyes in confusion whilst someone carried on laughing in the exact same state of mirth. From the corner of Edward's eye, something was definitely moving.

Edward noticed Nuria's expression turn to shock as both he and her came to the same conclusion: It's coming from next to us!

In tiny, infinitesimally small fractions of a circle, the two turned their heads to the source of the noise.

Celebi, as though finally realising that its companions had ceased laughing with it, started to tone down its chuckling awkwardly, until its face became passive, staring, wide eyed, at the two humans on either sides of it.

Nothing was said for the longest time. Until:

“Bonjour,” the Legendary Pokemon said politely, waving at Edward.

The spell over the two humans broke: almost symmetrically Edward and Nuria pushed away from the table, their chairs tipping making them fall to the floor.

“Ne vous inquietez pas, c'est moi, Celebi,” Celebi said kindly, smiling whilst sitting and staring unnaturally wide-eyed at the pair.

Neither of the humans responded.

The green pixie frowned, then straightened up, smiling again.

“¡Lo siento! Sé que muchos idiomas y -” Celebi stopped abruptly when it saw the blank expressions on the humans. After knitting its eyes for a few seconds, it spoke again, albeit more timidly.

“Do you understand me now?”

“What the hell are you doing here?!” Nuria blurted out, crawling away from the table on her back. Edward didn't know how to react – this was just too big a shock.

“I'll take that as a yes! I'm really sorry for that – there are just so many human languages I sometimes get a little muddled. Anyways, I have a story to tell. All should be clear after that. Please don't interrupt, because your questions will probably be answered.”

Edward exchanged a quizzical look with Nuria, both the humans calming slightly. This could have gone a lot worse, I suppose...

Cautiously, Edward nodded once, as did Nuria. Content, the green pixie began to speak:

“I suppose you both know the legend in the Sinnoh region regarding the creation of the universe?. Anyway, it is about how a God was hatched from nothing, then created all that there is by delegating the powers of time, space and energy to three powerful deities.”

Celebi paused, giving Edward time to think. Sure, the story did sound familiar...Perhaps I read it in an old bed-time story?

But...surely this can't be true... Edward thought, confused as to why Celebi was going over this. How could a Pokemon make a universe. What made it?

“This story,” Celebi continued, smiling cordially at the pair, “is entirely true.”

Another pause. Edward's eyes narrowed. Come on, how could that even-

“I happen to know, because I was there,” Celebi said, looking directly at Edward now. The boy felt goose-bumps prickle on his skin – not only because of the stare, but the realisation that the Legendary, despite its carefree nature, was telling the truth. Before he could say anything, however, Celebi continued.

“The God realised that these deities, however powerful, would fight a lot, basically, causing His beautiful universe to fragment. So He separated them as far as possible, each given homes in different crevices of time and space.

“But He knew it was not enough. One of the deities discovered and waged war on another: although He resolved the conflict, He still knew that battle between the three were inevitable. He also knew that, to keep the universe working properly, He would need to rest. He would be unable to protect His creations from themselves.

“So He took a portion of each of their power, and transferred it into me – a wonderfully spectacular creature with the ability to travel time and space and generate loads of energy. My job was, and still is, fairly easy. In the event of conflict, I am meant to step in to tip the scales in favour of a deity of my choosing to end the battle, thus preserving peace.

“You both probably still have questions. Please, ask away.”

Edward looked over at Nuria in disbelief, who too had her eyebrows knitted. Yeah. Right. How could such a small Pokemon be so powerful? Edward couldn't feel the overwhelming pressure he had felt around Latias or Latios, nor did it seem to exert any sheer power like Regice. In fact, Edward reckoned that, if he saw Celebi under different circumstances, he could have found it cute.

At the same time, he found its kind, lazy speech incompatible with its Legendary status. Overall, Edward felt fairly disorientated.

“I have a question,” Nuria said determinedly, rising slowly. Celebi's gaze snapped towards her. “I know that story – it was my favourite as a kid. Dialga – that was the time one,” she paused a little, uncertain and gauging Celebi's reaction before continuing, “then Palkia, the space one. But the only other is,” Nuria crumpled her expression as she tried to think, “Giratina – that's it! But Giratina was the ruler of its own little world, not the god of energy or anything.”

Edward, also rising, looked over proudly at his friend. Who knew Nuria had ever paid attention to a book?

“And you – all you do is fly around a forest somewhere. How could you be this epic peace-keeper when all you do is...well, I haven't really heard you do anything really.”

“Forests! Ooh, I love forests,” Celebi squealed in delight. “Is that where I am now? Wait,” Celebi's expression turned thoughtful, “which forest are you talking about?”

“Umm, Ilex? Yeah, Ilex Forest, I think so,” Nuria said, sharing incredulous looks with Edward. How can this be a Legendary Pokemon?

“Oh, I haven't lived there for... about nine thousand years! That was, and still is, if you think about it, a really good time. But I preferred Pinwheel Forest about...three million years ago,” she said brightly. Nuria took a bold step forward.

“You evaded the explanation – about Giratina.”

Celebi, who began floating over the table, giggled.

“You've got to remember – these are just legends. 'Giratina', as you call it, controls pure energy. Antimatter is just an aspect of energy – the collision of regular matter and antimatter creates bucket-loads of the stuff. It lives in its own world made from antimatter, to help protect it from the other two deities.”

Edward rose too, feeling more confidant around the mini-Legendary.

“Wait, so you can travel time, right? So... do we end up beating this killer?”

Celebi's expression darkened.

“Can you imagine, having all this power, the illusion of freedom, just to find a barrier blocking your view? I was given access to all of time and space – except for one, little golden rule. I can't travel to a future I haven't lived yet. Usually, I'm fine with that – I mean, what's more fun than watching the world go by? But then there's this killer... Come to think of it, that might be why I have the rule in the first place. I mean, you can't change the past, and maybe once I see the future, I won't be able to change it.

“Which actually brings me onto why I'm here...” The little Pokemon tensed excitedly, trying to build suspense. Edward noted that he and Nuria, however, were probably looking very unexcited. “I'm coming with you!”

Edward wasn't sure he heard properly.

“You're...c-c-coming...with us?” Edward stuttered. Celebi seemed unfased by the lack of enthusiasm.

“Of course! You have no idea how boring things have been lately! It's like I've done everything up until this point. You have to be careful travelling time – meeting yourself can cause loooads of complications. Anyway, I'll just be there to watch what happens and... I dunno, help? So, what do you both say?”

Edward looked at Nuria out of the corner of his eye. Nuria coughed suddenly.

“Can you give us a minute?” she asked, not quite sounding polite.

“Sure,” Celebi said, not moving.

Nuria coughed. Then she boldly waved the Pokemon away. Then, when Celebi still did nothing, Nuria said,

“Go away.”

Celebi, still oblivious to Nuria's rudeness, nodded enthusiastically and disappeared. Instantly, the girl wheeled around on Edward.

“Sooo, what do we do?”

“Well,” Edward said slowly, considering his response, “it can't be that bad a thing, surely? Yeah, it's a bit forward, but super-powerful Legendary power could come in handy.”

“But what about the other thing?” Nuria hissed. “Remember what Latias and Latios said? Other Legendaries don't take lightly to other Legendaries in their territory – won't that make them more violent and less reasonable? Also, didn't they say the killer would be able to sense Legendaries, and therefore find any travelling with us? And, the most important bit, what the hell is happening? This is all happening waaay too fast!”

Before Edward could respond, the softest of voices wafted through the room, as quiet as a summer breeze:

“I can shield myself from other Ancients.”

Sighing, Edward turned to the 'empty' half of the room.

“Okay, come out,” he said dryly.

Suddenly Celebi appeared.

“So, Celebi, you can make sure no other Legendaries can see you?” Edward enquired.

“Of course! I could also come in handy in case any turn violent – I am as far above them as Ancients are above humans.”

“But still,” Nuria said defiantly, “what would you do? Where would you...be?”

“I'd just hang around with you the whole time – it's easy to be invisible, as you saw. And I know all the Ancients rather personally: after all, I've had quite a bit of time. I know both where they are and what you should say to them. I can also cook, transport, make clothes, make friends, fly, read minds, defeat threats aaand,” Celebi cocked its head in thought, “I know everything about pretty much everything and everywhere.”

Once again there was another awkward silence.

“Sure,” said Nuria weakly.

Celebi cheered and floated up, punching the sky.

“This will be so much fun! Think of all the things we'll do! All the people we'll meet!”

“Yeah,” muttered Nuria, already looking as though she was rethinking her decision.

“So...” Edward said calmly, trying not to ruin the Legendary's fun, “what are you going to do now?”

“It is late, isn't it? I can watch you both sleep!” Celebi cried in excitement.

“No no,” Nuria said hurriedly,” how about you, uh, just leave us until morning. Is that alright?”

“Sure!” Celebi beamed, then disappeared.

Nothing was said for a while as the two children wandered aimlessly around their room, getting ready for sleep without discussion.

This is just too weird, Edward thought. Too wrapped up in their own thoughts to talk, Edward and Nuria got into their own beds, and, slowly, began to drift off to sleep.

***

Edward couldn't remember his dream the next morning. It may have had something to do with waking up to two, large and staring eyes mere centimetres from his face.

“It's morning!” Celebi crowed happily, pushing some purple fluff towards Edward. “Want any candy floss?”

After overcoming the mini heart-attack and refuting the sugary treat, Edward, thinking it best that Nuria did not wake in the same way he did, gently woke her up.

“Please,” Nuria yawned, rubbing her eyes, “tell me that didn't happen yesterday.”

“Candy floss?” Celebi offered, popping a small chunk into its mouth. “From the Viridian Festival around three hundred and forty seven years ago. It's really nice.”

Groaning, Nuria sluggishly rose out of bed, collected her clothes, and headed for the bathroom. After the door was locked, Celebi turned to Edward. Edward, who was silently cursing Nuria for leaving him alone with the Legendary, tried to avoid eye contact.

“Your friend doesn't like me, does she?” Celebi said, sounding fairly depressed. Edward, even though he could hardly believe he was having such a conversation with a Legendary Pokemon... a Legendary Pokemon he only really met last night, felt bad to hear this.

“No, it's just that Nuria... well, she isn't really a peoples person.”

From inside the bathroom, Edward heard the shower turning on. Feeling less awkward, Edward turned to look Celebi in the face, and noticed it beginning to smile.

“No matter. I'm really good at making friends.” The green pixie looked strangely at its candy floss. “Maybe she just doesn't like this in particular...”

Sensing Celebi was beginning to look disheartened again, Edward tried to smile in comfort.

“Nah, Nuria prefers Gummy Teddiursas anyway, so-” Edward stopped abruptly when he realised Celebi had disappeared.

Where's it-

Nuria screamed, and quick as a flash ran out the bathroom door, barely managing to hurriedly wrap a towel around her sopping frame in time. Edward instantly looked away, listening to his friend's cussing.

“But Edward said you liked Gummy Teddiursas,” Celebi said brightly, hovering through he bathroom door. Instantly, Edward could feel Nuria's glare on him.

“You told it to do that!?” she screeched, kicking him hard in the leg – even without any shoes on, Nuria still caused Edward to wince.

“No, I just said you didn't like candy floss and preferred Gummy Teddiursas,” Edward pleaded, looking at the ceiling rather that at his angry, mostly naked companion. “I didn't tell it to go in on you. Promise. Dear lord please believe me.”

Carefully, Edward lowered his gaze until he could just about make out Nuria's scowling face. He felt sickened at the thought of looking lower. She then looked at the Legendary, who had opened the packet and began to eat a few, gumming its mouth shut.

“Never do that to me again! Do you understand?” Nuria growled at Celebi. Celebi closed its eyes and bowed its head, looking fairly guilty. Nuria ignored the Pokemon's expression and walked past it, into the bathroom, and slammed and locked the door.

Edward stood there in silence, not looking at Celebi, just listening to the sound of the shower running. It stopped, then a few minutes later Nuria walked out, her hair wet. Too timid to talk to her, Edward collected his clothes and shuffled into the bathroom: he noticed how wet the floor was.

Quickly getting undressed, Edward turned on the shower and stepped into the hot spray. How long has it been before I've had one of these? he pondered, recounting the freezing downpours and when he fell into the ocean. He was just applying the shampoo when he noticed the muffled sounds of speech from the other room. Neither sounded angry, so Edward smiled. At least they're getting on better, he thought happily. The voices suddenly stopped talking. Strange...

“BOO!” Celebi shouted, less than a metre away from him in the shower cubicle. Screaming, Edward fell through the door onto the bathroom floor. Noting the Legendary was still present, Edward's shock turned to embarrassment as he groped around for his towel.

The little pixie hovered, clutching its sides and kicking its legs in laughter, and Edward could hear the same sort of sound from outside the room. Making sure the towel was securely fastened around him, Edward unlocked then slammed open the door, glaring as angrily as he could at his hysterical friend.

“Damn you,” he growled, before turning to Celebi. He held on to its arm and, unbeknownst to the laughing Pokemon, Edward guided it out of the room. He then slammed the door, locking it tightly.

I hate Legendaries, he thought darkly as he dried himself off.

***

Celebi hovered outside the Pokemon Centre window, observing itself and the laughing female. Sighing to itself, frustrated, it turned and once again vanished.

***
***


Celebi's Time travel mechanics, by Scaldaver:
1) Celebi can travel freely to any time period it has existed in. For example, when the universe began (let's call this date 0), then if Celebi just cruised along without time travelling for ten years, it would be the year 10. Now, if Celebi wanted to time travel, it could go to any period 0≤t>10 (t being the time period it goes to). It cannot go to the years 12, 19 or 2013 because it has never existed in that time. Therefore, if this story takes place in the year 2013, Celebi would have had to live for at least two-thousand and thirteen years straight (this is imagining the universe stated at 0AD). So, if Celebi has lived multiples times in the same time zone, it can be assumed that Celebi is older than the actual universe.

2) When Celebi time-travels, it instantaneously moves to any point in time or space (as long as it has 'lived up to' the time it wants to go). The physical or chemical properties of anything it takes in time do not alter (hence there can be delicious 347 year old candy floss).



Chapter 19 - Research (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=16122681#postcount=140)

The Great Butler
15th March 2013, 10:30 AM
First, on your new sig: just focusing on Groudon doesn't really capture the scope of the plot. I'd add Kyogre's fainted sprite alongside it. You also need the apostrophe in "Legend's." Other than that, it's a great concept.


Neeeeeew chapter! This'll be the last for a long time, so please enjoy!


Chapter 18
The Companion

“And then,” Nuria snorted in a fit of giggles to a guffawing Edward, “she told her Oddish to do the 'grass thingy'!”

“Oh god,” Edward gasped through the laughter, wiping a tear away from his eye, “why are people s-so incompetent?”

“But that's not the best thing,” Nuria declared, holding her hands up. “The best thing is-” she paused, her giggling preventing words from formulating, “the Oddish...the Oddish turned to her and said,” for a while Nuria could sat nothing as she gripped her sides, “'Who are you?'! Turned out she'd...she'd picked up the wrong Pokemon from the Centre!”

This is silly enough to almost work as a conversation between them as they were drinking! I rather like the casual tone.

The Pokemon Center giving the girl the wrong Pokemon is something that seems a little unbelievable, but in a world where the kind of chaos you've shown is going on, some level of confusion on an administrative level is understandable.


Edward and Nuria erupted in howls of laughter at the amusing story. They were sitting at the rounded, wooden table in their room at the Pokemon Centre, sipping from their cola cans whilst exchanging their battle stories. They both felt light-headed after the day of pure trainer battles, and, even though Edwards ribs were starting to hurt rather painfully, neither of them could stop laughing.

"Edward's ribs."


That is, until a third voice began laughing hysterically with them.

It took Edward and Nuria a little while to hear the voice through their own giggling, but after a few seconds it was extremely apparent to both of them, and slowly, like a freight train grinding to a halt, they began to calm down, locking eyes in confusion whilst someone carried on laughing in the exact same state of mirth. From the corner of Edward's eye, something was definitely moving.

Edward noticed Nuria's expression turn to shock as both he and her came to the same conclusion: It's coming from next to us!

In tiny, infinitesimally small fractions of a circle, the two turned their heads to the source of the noise.

You could probably do without "infinitesimally small" since you have "tiny" right next to it.


Celebi, as though finally realising that its companions had ceased laughing with it, started to tone down its chuckling awkwardly, until its face became passive, staring, wide eyed, at the two humans on either sides of it.

Nothing was said for the longest time. Until:

“Bonjour,” the Legendary Pokemon said politely, waving at Edward.

The spell over the two humans broke: almost symmetrically Edward and Nuria pushed away from the table, their chairs tipping making them fall to the floor.

“Ne vous inquietez pas, c'est moi, Celebi,” Celebi said kindly, smiling whilst sitting and staring unnaturally wide-eyed at the pair.

Oh God, French-talking Celebi is hilarious. I don't know how you got this idea but it's great.


Neither of the humans responded.

The green pixie frowned, then straightened up, smiling again.

“¡Lo siento! Sé que muchos idiomas y -” Celebi stopped abruptly when it saw the blank expressions on the humans. After knitting its eyes for a few seconds, it spoke again, albeit more timidly.

“Do you understand me now?”

“What the hell are you doing here?!” Nuria blurted out, crawling away from the table on her back. Edward didn't know how to react – this was just too big a shock.

“I'll take that as a yes! I'm really sorry for that – there are just so many human languages I sometimes get a little muddled. Anyways, I have a story to tell. All should be clear after that. Please don't interrupt, because your questions will probably be answered.”

Clear something up for me please: was Celebi being serious when it was using the other languages, or was it just messing with them? Given Celebi's personality, either option sounds feasible.


Edward exchanged a quizzical look with Nuria, both the humans calming slightly. This could have gone a lot worse, I suppose...

Cautiously, Edward nodded once, as did Nuria. Content, the green pixie began to speak:

“I suppose you both know the legend in the Sinnoh region regarding the creation of the universe?. Anyway, it is about how a God was hatched from nothing, then created all that there is by delegating the powers of time, space and energy to three powerful deities.”

Celebi paused, giving Edward time to think. Sure, the story did sound familiar...Perhaps I read it in an old bed-time story?

But...surly this can't be true... Edward thought, confused as to why Celebi was going over this. How could a Pokemon make a universe. What made it?

"surely" is misspelled as "surly" here. That needs to be fixed.

Interesting that you're touching on the "chicken or the egg" paradox in regards to Arceus and creation. I wonder if we'll see something to clear that up later?


“This story,” Celebi continued, smiling cordially at the pair, “is entirely true.”

Another pause. Edward's eyes narrowed. Come on, how could that even-

“I happen to know, because I was there,” Celebi said, looking directly at Edward now. The boy felt goose-bumps prickle on his skin – not only because of the stare, but the realisation that the Legendary, despite its carefree nature, was telling the truth. Before he could say anything, however, Celebi continued.

I don't see much reason for anyone to doubt Celebi's claim, really. Celebi can time travel, so if it wishes to go back to the beginning of the universe, it can easily do so.

I guess there's the possibility that Celebi is lying and has a sinister ulterior motive, but I'm not seeing that as a big possibility right now.


“The God realised that these deities, however powerful, would fight a lot, basically, causing His beautiful universe to fragment. So He separated them as far as possible, each given homes in different crevices of time and space.

“But He knew it was not enough. One of the deities discovered and waged war on another: although He resolved the conflict, He still knew that battle between the three were inevitable. He also knew that, to keep the universe working properly, He would need to rest. He would be unable to protect His creations from themselves.

“So He took a portion of each of their power, and transferred it into me – a wonderfully spectacular creature with the ability to travel time and space and generate loads of energy. My job was, and still is, fairly easy. In the event of conflict, I am meant to step in to tip the scales in favour of a deity of my choosing to end the battle, thus preserving peace.

That's an interesting interpretation/expansion of Sinnoh's mythology. It makes good sense, too. I like it.


“You both probably still have questions. Please, ask away.”

Edward looked over at Nuria in disbelief, who too had her eyebrows knitted. Yeah. Right. How could such a small Pokemon be so powerful? Edward couldn't feel the overwhelming pressure he had felt around Latias or Latios, nor did it seem to exert any sheer power like Regice. In fact, Edward reckoned that, if he saw Celebi under different circumstances, he could have found it cute.

At the same time, he found its kind, lazy speech incompatible with its Legendary status. Overall, Edward felt fairly disorientated.

“I have a question,” Nuria said determinedly, rising slowly. Celebi's gaze snapped towards her. “I know that story – it was my favourite as a kid. Dialga – that was the time one,” she paused a little, uncertain and gauging Celebi's reaction before continuing, “then Palkia, the space one. But the only other is,” Nuria crumpled her expression as she tried to think, “Giratina – that's it! But Giratina was the ruler of its own little world, not the god of energy or anything.”

Edward, also rising, looked over proudly at his friend. Who knew Nuria had ever paid attention to a book?

“And you – all you do is fly around a forest somewhere. How could you be this epic peace-keeper when all you do is...well, I haven't really heard you do anything really.”

Shouldn't she be aware that Celebi can time travel when Celebi just told her about it?


“Forests! Ooh, I love forests,” Celebi squealed in delight. “Is that where I am now? Wait,” Celebi's expression turned thoughtful, “which forest are you talking about?”

“Umm, Ilex? Yeah, Ilex Forest, I think so,” Nuria said, sharing incredulous looks with Edward. How can this be a Legendary Pokemon?

“Oh, I haven't lived there for... about nine thousand years! That was, and still is, if you think about it, a really good time. But I preferred Pinwheel Forest about...three million years ago,” she said brightly. Nuria took a bold step forward.

“You evaded the explanation – about Giratina.”

Celebi's distraction was amusing, but I think Nuria might be on to something - it's likely Celebi is, in fact, clever enough to try and dodge questions like that.


Celebi, who began floating over the table, giggled.

“You've got to remember – these are just legends. 'Giratina', as you call it, controls pure energy. Antimatter is just an aspect of energy – the collision of regular matter and antimatter creates bucket-loads of the stuff. It lives in its own world made from antimatter, to help protect it from the other two deities.”

Edward rose too, feeling more confidant around the mini-Legendary.

“Wait, so you can travel time, right? So... do we end up beating this killer?”

Again, it seems strange that Celebi informed them of its time travel powers, and Edward clearly registered them in his own mind, but Nuria doesn't seem to know what Celebi's powers are? Or does she just not think much of such powers?

Edward's question is a good one, I'm glad he thought of it.


Celebi's expression darkened.

“Can you imagine, having all this power, the illusion of freedom, just to find a barrier blocking your view? I was given access to all of time and space – except for one, little golden rule. I can't travel to a future I haven't lived yet. Usually, I'm fine with that – I mean, what's more fun than watching the world go by? But then there's this killer... Come to think of it, that might be why I have the rule in the first place. I mean, you can't change the past, and maybe once I see the future, I won't be able to change it.

Could you explain the mechanics of this rule a bit more? I'm not sure I fully grasp the way Celebi can't travel to the future.


“Which actually bring me onto why I'm here...” The little Pokemon tensed excitedly, trying to build suspense. Edward noted that he and Nuria, however, were probably looking very unexcited. “I'm coming with you!”

"brings me." You were missing the 's.'

I wonder if Celebi is messing with them. This came up so suddenly that it almost seems easy to guess so.


Edward wasn't sure he heard properly.

“You're...c-c-coming...with us?” Edward stuttered. Celebi seemed unphased by the lack of enthusiasm.

"unfazed."


“Of course! You have no idea how boring things have been lately! It's like I've done everything up until this point. You have to be careful travelling time – meeting yourself can cause loooads of complications. Anyway, I'll just be there to watch what happens and... I dunno, help? So, what do you both say?”

Edward looked at Nuria out of the corner of his eye. Nuria coughed suddenly.

You don't have to say "Nuria" twice. Just "she" would do fine for the second time.


“Can you give us a minute?” she asked, not quite sounding polite.

“Sure,” Celebi said, not moving.

Nuria coughed. Then she boldly waved the Pokemon away. Then, when Celebi still did nothing, Nuria said,

“Go away.”

Celebi, still oblivious to Nuria's rudeness, nodded enthusiastically and disappeared. Instantly, Nuria wheeled around on Edward.

“Sooo, what do we do?”

“Well,” Edward said slowly, considering his response, “it can't be that bad a thing, surly? Yeah, it's a bit forward, but an uber powerful Legendary power could come in handy.”

Once again, "surely" is misspelled as "surly." Also, using "uber" in dialogue feels a little awkward. Maybe just calling it "really powerful" would be fine. Either way, you don't need to say "Legendary power," just "Legendary."


“But what about the other thing?” Nuria hissed. “Remember what Latias and Latios said? Other Legendaries don't take lightly to other Legendaries in their territory – won't that make them more violent and less reasonable? Also, didn't they say the killer would be able to sense Legendaries, and therefore find any travelling with us? And, the most important bit, what the hell is happening? This is all happening waaay too fast!”

I'm glad Nuria brought up this question. It's good to be following up on details that were introduced earlier.

Speaking of Latias and Latios, it's been a while since we've seen them. I wonder what they're up to.


Before Edward could respond, the softest of voices wafted through the room, as quiet as a summer breeze:

“I can shield myself from other Ancients.”

Sighing, Edward turned to the 'empty' half of the room.

“Okay, come out,” he said dryly.

Suddenly Celebi appeared.

“So, Celebi, you can make sure no other Legendaries can see you?” Edward enquired.

“Of course! I could also come in handy in case any turn violent – I am as far above them as Ancients are above humans.”

I get the feeling that once again, Celebi is exaggerating. The line about being far above other Legendaries is a sign of it, I think.


“But still,” Nuria said defiantly, “what would you do? Where would you...be?”

“I'd just hang around with you the whole time – it's easy to be invisible, as you saw. And I know all the Ancients rather personally: after all, I've had quite a bit of time. I know both where they are and what you should say to them. I can also cook, transport, make clothes, make friends, fly, read minds, defeat threats aaand,” Celebi cocked its head in thought, “I know everything about pretty much everything and everywhere.”

Yeah, definitely bluffing. I think this is setting up a plot point for the future.


Once again there was another awkward silence.

“Sure,” said Nuria weakly.

Celebi cheered and floated up, punching the sky.

“This will be so much fun! Think of all the thing's we'll do! All the people we'll meet!”

No need for an apostrophe in "things."


“Yeah,” muttered Nuria, already looking as though she was rethinking her decision.

“So...” Edward said calmly, trying not to ruin the Legenday's fun, “what are you going to do now?”

"Legendary's." You were missing the 'r.'


“It is late, isn't it? I can watch you both sleep!” Celebi cried in excitement.

“No no,” Nuria said hurriedly,” how about you, uh, just leave us until morning. Is that alright?”

“Sure!” Celebi beamed, then disappeared.

Celebi didn't go anywhere, I'm sure of it. That thing is just too hilariously mischievous to pass up a chance like this.



Edward couldn't remember his dream the next morning. It may have had something to do with waking up to two, large and staring eyes mere centimetres from his face.

“It's morning!” Celebi crowed happily, pushing some purple fluff towards Edward. “Want any candy floss?”

I actually smiled pretty hard at that. It just came out of nowhere, yet it's so strangely funny that I couldn't help it.


After overcoming the mini heart-attack and refuting the sugary treat, Edward, thinking it best that Nuria did not wake in the same way he did, gently woke her up.

“Please,” Nuria yawned, rubbing her eyes, “tell me that didn't happen yesterday.”

“Candy floss?” Celebi offered, popping a small chunk into its mouth. “From the Viridian Festival around three hundred and forty seven years ago. It's really nice.”

I just noticed something. Is Celebi joking again when it says that the candy floss came from three hundred and forty seven years ago? If it isn't joking, then there's some major loose playing with the laws of time travel going on here. I think I need a bit further an elaboration on this.

Or, crazy theory, but what if Celebi is the killer, putting on this personality as an act, and breaking the laws of time to kill other Legendaries?


Groaning, Nuria sluggishly rose out of bed, collected her clothes, and headed for the bathroom. After the door was locked, Celebi turned to Edward. Edward, who was silently cursing Nuria for leaving him alone with the Legendary, tried to avoid eye contact.

“Your friend doesn't like me, does she?” Celebi said, sounding fairly depressed. Edward, even though he could hardly believe he was having such a conversation with a legendary Pokemon... a Legendary Pokemon he only really met last night, felt bad to hear this.

Try to pick a consistent capitalization scheme for the term "Legendary Pokemon." Are both words capitalized or is just 'Pokemon' capitalized?

I'm having a hard time buying Celebi's emotion here as sincere. Maybe it is being sincere, but after all that joking and silly behavior, it's hard to tell.


“No, it's just that Nuria... well, she isn't really a peoples person.”

Is the expression 'people person' used differently where you're from? I'm not going to call this an error immediately because that could be the case.


From inside the bathroom, Edward heard the shower turning on. Feeling less awkward, Edward turned to look Celebi in the face, and noticed it beginning to smile.

“No matter. I'm really good at making friends.” The green pixie looked strangely at its candy floss. “Maybe she just doesn't like this in particular...”

Sensing Celebi was beginning to look disheartened again, Edward tried to smile in comfort.

“Nah, Nuria prefers Gummy Teddiursas anyway, so-” Edward stopped abruptly when he realised Celebi had disappeared.

Where's it-

Nuria screamed, and quick as a flash ran out the bathroom door, barely managing to hurriedly wrap a towel around her sopping frame in time. Edward instantly looked away, listening to his friend's cussing.

“But Edward said you liked Gummy Teddiursas,” Celebi said brightly, hovering through he bathroom door. Instantly, Edward could feel Nuria's glare on him.

That was amazing. Even after having read this scene once already when I beta-ed it, I still laughed at it again. Some silliness is good to have in a serious story.


“You told it to do that!?” she screeched, kicking him hard in the leg – even without any shoes on, Nuria still caused Edward to wince.

“No, I just said you didn't like candy floss and preferred Gummy Teddiursas,” Edward pleaded, looking at the ceiling rather that at his angry, mostly naked companion. “I didn't tell it to go in on you. Promise. Dear lord please believe me.”

I can just imagine what Nuria would do to him if she didn't believe him. And that's what makes me love their interactions so much.


Carefully, Edward lowered his gaze until he could just about make out Nuria's scowling face. He felt sickened at the thought of looking lower. She then looked at the Legendary, who had opened the packet and began to eat a few, gumming its mouth shut.

“Never do that to me again! Do you understand?” Nuria growled at Celebi. Celebi closed its eyes and bowed its head, looking fairly guilty. Nuria ignored the Pokemon's expression and walked past it, into the bathroom, and slammed and locked the door.

Edward stood there is silence, not looking at Celebi, just listening to the sound of the shower running. It stopped, then a few minutes later Nuria walked out, her hair wet. Too timid to talk to her, Edward collected his clothes and shuffled into the bathroom: he noticed how wet the floor was.

"Edward stood there in silence."


Quickly getting undressed, Edward turned on the shower and stepped into the hot spray. How long has it been before I've had one of these? he pondered, recounting the freezing downpours and when he fell into the ocean. He was just applying the shampoo when he noticed the muffled sounds of speech from the other room. Neither sounded angry, so Edward smiled. At least they're getting on better, he thought happily. The voices suddenly stopped talking. Strange...

“BOO!” Celebi shouted, less than a metre away from him in the shower cubicle. Screaming, Edward fell through the door onto the bathroom floor. Noting the Legendary was still present, Edward's shock turned to embarrassment as he groped around for his towel.

The little pixie hovered, clutching its sides and kicking its legs in laughter, and Edward could hear the same sort of sound from outside the room. Making sure the towel was securely fastened around him, Edward unlocked then slammed open the door, glaring as angrily as he could at his hysterical friend.

I just knew Nuria told Celebi to do it back to him. These two just have such a great dynamic together, it's almost unbelievable.


“Damn you,” he growled, before turning to Celebi. He held on to its arm and, unbeknownst to the laughing Pokemon, Edward guided it out of the room. He then slammed the door, locking it tightly.

I hate Legendaries, he thought darkly as he dried himself off.

***

Celebi hovered outside the Pokemon Centre window, observing itself and the laughing female. Sighing to itself, frustrated, it turned and once again vanished.

Whoa, what's with this twist ending? Was it actually Celebi all along? Like, was it a Celebi from the past or an impostor in there? You've got me asking questions, so that's a sign of a good twist ending.

This was a good chapter overall, I'd say. Celebi was definitely the standout character with its ridiculous behavior that seems to have something deeper going on, but Edward and Nuria really had a great presence too. I want to say that this chapter is an example of how a chapter with few real events happening can still be great just on the strengths of its characters.

Volcer
25th March 2013, 8:46 AM
Hi. I read fourteen chapters and liked it a lot. I nominated you for a couple of awards. May I be on the PM list?

Dormant
25th March 2013, 1:56 PM
Yes! Made it to the top!! Anyways, I've just read this Fan Fiction and it is AWESOME!! I like Edward, he's a fragile, young man that wants to be normal. Until one day, The Killer appeared. I don't seemed to like Nuria, she seemed to be a jerk. Not gonna lie. I like her Kirlia though! I also liked Edward's Nincada, I wonder what Edward will react to see Nincada evolved into Ninjask and Shedinja. I bet he'll be so confused about the Shedinja and would be like 'Wha-?!?!'

So anyways, When I first read about Nuria's Bayleaf(Or should I say Chikorita) I first thought she's similar to N. Except more meaner and Angrier. She is also similar to Banette. It is said that Banette was once a doll until its owner threw it away. Kinda like The trainer who gave Chikorita back to Prof. Elm. Though Bayleaf seemed to be more worse than Banette in my opinion.

I really like this fic! Keep up the good work!!!

So Dormant;429; signing off..

Scaldaver
2nd April 2013, 6:45 PM
Thank you for all your wonderful comments!,
TGB, Thanks for all those corrections (I swore 'unfazed' was an Americanism at the time...), and thanks to your questions there's now a pretty-dandy guide to Celebi's mechanics at the end of the chapter, if you're interested.


The Pokemon Center giving the girl the wrong Pokemon is something that seems a little unbelievable, but in a world where the kind of chaos you've shown is going on, some level of confusion on an administrative level is understandable.

I knew whilst writing it that it was a bit loose, but I really couldn't come up with that an imaginative story at the time.


You could probably do without "infinitesimally small" since you have "tiny" right next to it.

I know its slight overkill, but I really like the imagery 'infinitesimally small' gives.


Oh God, French-talking Celebi is hilarious. I don't know how you got this idea but it's great.
Clear something up for me please: was Celebi being serious when it was using the other languages, or was it just messing with them? Given Celebi's personality, either option sounds feasible.

Thanks for the compliment! I'll let people come up with their own opinions for the second bit though.


Interesting that you're touching on the "chicken or the egg" paradox in regards to Arceus and creation. I wonder if we'll see something to clear that up later?

Hmm, depends how many religions I'm willing to insult at the time. Probably none, so unless I can think up another way, this won't really be addressed. For the time being.


Edward's question is a good one, I'm glad he thought of it.

When I originally wrote that, I thought 'Is this making Edward sound like a cheat?', until I remembered that, as the world hung in the balance, it was a legit question.


That was amazing. Even after having read this scene once already when I beta-ed it, I still laughed at it again. Some silliness is good to have in a serious story.
I just knew Nuria told Celebi to do it back to him. These two just have such a great dynamic together, it's almost unbelievable.

Thanks for saying they're so good. I worry sometimes that I get too wrapped up in plot expansion (I understand it has gone WAY to quickly) and forget about believable characters, so thanks.


Whoa, what's with this twist ending? Was it actually Celebi all along? Like, was it a Celebi from the past or an impostor in there? You've got me asking questions, so that's a sign of a good twist ending.

DUN DUN DUNNNNN!


This was a good chapter overall, I'd say. Celebi was definitely the standout character with its ridiculous behavior that seems to have something deeper going on, but Edward and Nuria really had a great presence too. I want to say that this chapter is an example of how a chapter with few real events happening can still be great just on the strengths of its characters.

Thanks alot for that, I do worry sometimes I rush this a tad as I have such little time to write.


Hi. I read fourteen chapters and liked it a lot. I nominated you for a couple of awards. May I be on the PM list?

Hey there too! Thanks alot, and of course you can be on the PM list!


So anyways, When I first read about Nuria's Bayleaf(Or should I say Chikorita) I first thought she's similar to N. Except more meaner and Angrier. She is also similar to Banette. It is said that Banette was once a doll until its owner threw it away. Kinda like The trainer who gave Chikorita back to Prof. Elm. Though Bayleaf seemed to be more worse than Banette in my opinion.

You just blew my mind. Thanks for all the support!

It may be a while until the next chapter, guys - my actual Tests are up after these holidays, so revising and testing are gonna be what its all about. Thanks for all your support, and TTFN!

Scaldaver
3rd July 2013, 6:54 PM
After countless hours of revision and tests, I think I've invested my free time intelligently and decided to post another chapter. There will be more soon - especially after my DofE camping trip!
Read, review and, above all, enjoy!

Chapter 19
Research

Jack liked prowling through the library book shelves. It made him feel like a Mightyena on the hunt, peeking through a foliage of books, his feet padding gently on what he imagined was a carpet of moss and grass.

On all fours he crept along, feeling comforted by his proximity to the shelves and floor in the semi-abandoned library. He knew nobody could see him, purely because he was alone in this particular row. He knew his Mum was somewhere near the door on the other side of the room, probably in deep conversation, but he'd saw some other kids a bit older than him during his initial run through the place. He could just about hear them and, grinning in excitement, he began to crawl towards the source of low murmurs.

Occasionally rising to two legs, the boy slunk from one row of books to another before spotting the children – although he could see they were really more like teenagers – sitting at a table in a central location of the large library. The boy shuddered happily; he felt so secret, so skilful having crept up on these people unawares. With only half the side of his face poking around the edge of the shelf, he decided, like any good-natured six-year-old, to spy on them.

There were three of them: a boy whose face was hidden, immersed in a leather-bound book; beside him, a bored-looking girl reading a book off the table whilst balancing her head on her hand and tapping her fingers absent mindedly, and one other person next to her, staring right at Jack.

The boy instantly snapped back behind the shelf, a cold bolt of shock quickly running through him. Recovering after a few seconds he looked around again, only to see the teen still looking at him.

Jack couldn't tell if it were a boy or a girl – its features seemed to blend from one gender to the other whilst looking completely normal. Very normal. Jack wondered if he would even have noted the person if it weren't for those scary, wide eyes that seemed to look right through him. Or that demonic, over-large grin plastered on its face.

Jack didn't feel like a brave Mightyena any more. The person was scaring him. With just one look back, he ran through the room, book dashing past him until he was burying himself in his Mum's thigh.

“What's the matter, honey?” she cooed as she lifted him up from under his outstretched arms. Jack just pushed his face into her shoulder, certain that the person would still be looking at him. He heard his Mum apologise to the librarian before walking out the room and setting off down the stairs, all the while trying to get a peep out of her son.

Back at the chair, the 'person' looked longingly after the child.

“What a cute kid,” Celebi sighed.

“Shh,” was all Edward replied as he eagerly flipped the page.

“Oh, shh yourself. When can we go?” Nuria moaned.

“Look,” Edward said with an ounce of frustration, pushing his book in front of her, “how about you look through the list and see who it could be?”

Sighing, Nuria aligned the book and began to read.

“Ho-oh. Apparently brought other Legendaries back to life. Probably not the killer. Mew. Apparently created all life. Probably not the killer. Mewtwo and Genesect. Apparently made in labs years ago. Probably aren't the killers.”

“Come on, stop with the sarcasm. Instead of who it isn't, who could it be?”

“Well,” Nuria said complacently, flicking to a page with a dark, malevolent illustration of a shadow with nightmarish eyes, “Darkrai looks iffy as hell to me.”

“We're not going to label someone as a mass murderer because they look 'iffy'.”

“Then why are we going to?” she said pointedly, snapping the book shut. She underlined the book title with her finger: “'Pokemon Myths and Legends'. Myths. Legends. Who knows how much of this is right or not? Speaking of which,” she flicked through it quickly, “look – 'Celebi, commonly referred to as 'The Voice of Ilex Forest', is rumoured to live in and protect this ancient-' - see? So we know most of this is a load of Ponyta poop.”

“I liked Ilex,” Celebi said in wonder looking around the room with fascination.

“Speaking of which,” Nuria said, turning to Celebi, “can you drop the human thing. You're freaking me out and I swear you just scarred a little kid for life.”

Celebi pouted.

“But it's so fun being hidden so well. Nobody would suspect a human!”

“But,” she said, passing the book back to an eager Edward, “nobody in a thousand miles would think you're really human.”

The librarian popped her head around a corner and hushed her at the same time as Edward did. She gave up and, out of complete boredom, lay her head on the table and covered herself with her hands.

Edward flipped through the book for the umpteenth time. Moltres? In a Pokeball. And it didn't seem right that any of the other birds would be crazily evil. What about the dogs? No, that doesn't seem right either, Edward thought, one of a trio being different doesn't fit. Regigigas? No, that built the continents or something.

“Thoughts, Celebi?” Edward asked, frustrated.

“I fancy more candy floss,” it intoned, causing Nuria to knead her own head.

“No, about who the killer might be.”

“Oh. No clue. I've lived too long to remember such fine details about my past.”

“Like a whole bloody planet being annihilated?” Nuria seethed.

“Stuff like that happens all the time,” Celebi shrugged. “Worlds live, worlds die. But that candy floss...”

“I'd kill you if you weren't so immortal. And stop looking at me like that!”

“But you said you didn't like me being invisible.”

“But what I meant was-”

“Look,” Edward cut over, “how about you just tell us which Legends you think might be evil or not then we can leave.”

Celebi's human face strained in concentration.

“Well... Mewtwo always seemed... brisk when I invited it out...”

“But Mew itself must have been a barrel of laughs,” Nuria commented sarcastically.

“Yes, actually – we once went to this fairground in the year-”

Nuria jumped up suddenly.

“Eddy. We're leaving. I can't take this whiny god while feeling trapped in such a stupidly boring area.”

“Libraries aren't-” Edward started.

“Leaving.” Nuria pulled Edward up firmly. “Now.”

Sighing, Edward carefully collected up the book and his bag and headed over to the book take-out. After scanning the book and using his Pokedex to verify his identity, he received the receipt – the name of the book followed by 'Must return within 30 days'. Edward couldn't help but chuckle slightly. The world on the brink of apocalypse, and they still want their books back.

Edward shuffled hurriedly after Nuria and slowly followed behind her downstairs – Damn these ribs impose a dumb speed limit, he thought bitterly. He didn't bother looking back on Celebi; he knew it would pop up sooner or later.

“Last time I ever let you drag me in a library,” Nuria muttered.

They got to the ground floor: here the stacks and shelves shared space with the odd glass case exhibiting some oceanic wonder: although he wanted to stay and fawn over the remnants of the library's museum days, he sense Nuria might stab him with a book if he tried.

Soon they were out: the gloomy sky like a placard to the pair, as if shouting 'Get a move on'. Subconsciously taking the message in, they quickened their pace, turning right around the library and back towards the northward route.

It took a few awkward seconds for someone to break the silence.

“So,” Nuria said, “you got a plan for the electric gym?”

“It'll probably be a breeze if Mudkip evolves by then,” Edward replied, manoeuvring gently to get his Pokedex whilst inflicting minimal damage on his chest. After getting to the correct section, he enlarged the Mudkip diagram.

“This says he should have evolved by now,” Edward voiced frustratedly.

“Just give it a few levels,” Nuria encouraged. “You're lucky to have Nincada as it is: if neither evolve then you'll have at least one ground-type. I, on the other hand, am stuck with a water, grass and psychic type.” She looked over at Edward for a second. “The Gym Leader has a Magneton, right?”

“Magnezone,” Edward corrected whilst scrolling through his other Pokemon.

“Darn,” she cursed, sinking into her own thoughts.

“You shouldn't worry either: Kirlia seems over-powered enough for anything.”

Nuria chuckled.

“I suppose. Speaking of Kirlia, guess what level she is?”

“Thirty.”

“Close: Twenty-nine. Soon” she gloated, “I shall have a fabulous Gardevoir.”

“Whatever,” Edward said as he put his Pokedex away. “And how are the rest doing?”

“Both at sixteen.”

“I'd cough 'favouritism' at you, but I don't think my ribs could take it,” Edward commented sarcastically as they approached the route.

“Hey, training Shellder, like, ten levels in one day isn't that bad, is it? He's getting along fairly well – barely scratched by any physical attack.”

“And Bayleef? Didn't that evolve at sixteen?” Edward thought for a second. “Hang on, when was the last time you actually used Bayleef?”

“Shall we go through the trees?” Nuria asked, completely ignoring Edward's question. They had just reached the threshold of the route, complete with the plethora of battling trainers. “You know, to avoid unwanted battles?”

“Sure,” Edward said off-handedly.

They took a sharp left and found a shaded opening in the trees far from the battling trainers – with any hope, Edward thought, they wouldn't be seen at all. However...

“How about you send out Kirlia?” Edward asked as the approached the trees. Edward realised that, whilst containing an easily-walkable track, the dense trees prevented much light getting in.

“Is poor Eddy afwaid of the dark?” Nuria taunted happily, though releasing Kirlia regardless.

“Shut-up,” was all Edward could offer in terms of a come-back. Nuria chuckled and followed Kirlia into the forest.

After perhaps half a minute of getting attuned to the light levels, Edward found there was enough room to walk beside Kirlia and Nuria.

“So how are your Pokemon doing?” Nuria asked as he walked up next to her.

“Mudkip and Nincada at eighteen and Zubat at fifteen. A little more... even than your spread.”

“Why don't you send out Nincada?” Nuria offered. Edward began to comply, but with slight hesitance. Did she sound excited?

“Why Nincada?” Edward asked as he took out his Pokeball from his pocket.

“I like Nincada. Is that such a bad thing?” Nuria asked,sounding slightly offended.

“No, no,” Edward said, holding his Pokeball out and tossing it gently. Before the ball rebounded to his hand, Nincada had formed, looking up at the three. Edward quickly looked over at Nuria; she seemed a little confused.

“Would you like to walk with us?” Edward asked awkwardly. Nincada nod was as awkward as Edward's question; obviously he was surprised to be invited just to 'walk'.

The now-foursome continued onwards, the group naturally splitting into Kirlia and Nincada at the front and Nuria and Edward trailing a bit behind. Nuria's pace slowed – obviously she expected Edward to do the same.

“That was weird,” she muttered under her breath so only Edward could hear.

“What? That you like Nincada?”

“Yeah... Not that there's anything I don't like about it, but...”

Nuria left the sentence hanging, focussing on the ground as she walked. Unable to find anything to say, Edward looked ahead to Kirlia and Nincada, wondering what must be going through their heads.

***

Nincada felt strange crawling beside the elegant psychic-type. Last time they had met, after all, they were about the same in terms of power and she seemed so shy. She seemed more bold now, and it was blatant who was the stronger one here; power almost radiated out of her.

“How are you?” Kirlia asked courteously. Nincada stiffened slightly. There it was again.

“Good,” he replied. They carried on walking for a while.

“How is training?” she asked just as kindly.

“Good,” he replied. He could feel the atmosphere tense.

“Are you okay?” Kirlia asked, genuine concern in her voice. “You're not talking very much.”

Nincada looked away awkwardly.

“My brethren do not act in such ways...” Nincada muttered. Kirlia looked down sympathetically. Seconds passed as she thought.

“How are things with Edward?”

Nincada felt taken aback by the question. He'd never really thought about it before.

“Good,” he said, unsure.

“Care to elaborate?” Kirlia asked cheerily.

“What do you mean? We train, yes, and I get stronger. That is good, no?”

“But I mean, how do you get along? What does he say to you?”

Nincada thought for several moments.

“Fury Swipes, Dig, Harden-”

“No, no,” Kirlia interjected politely, “I mean, when you're not battling?”

“We... we don't.”

“Okay,” Kirlia responded, smiling happily. “So... do you still have that present?”

Nincada felt the well of affection build up in him for the second time.

“Yes, it lies beneath my back wing. I like present very much. Thank you.”

Kirlia, being attuned to the insect's feelings, joined him in the surge of joy.

“I like you,” Kirlia said happily. Nincada tilted its head.

“Why? I have done nothing to make you like me. I did not think anyone liked me.”

Kirlia briefly thought of the childish, yet loveable, overzealous Mudkip, the uptight, solemn Zubat and...That ***** of a Bayleef.

“Because you're a nice person, silly. And why don't you think people like you?”

“Like... it is an alien concept amongst Nincada. We compete to survive. The first human I met chose me just because I was stronger than others. I fight the Pokemon I see. I'm not sure I know how to 'like'.”

“Well,” Kirlia said, less steadily, “do you like me?”

“Perhaps,” Nincada said, no emotion in his voice. “I think it so. Because you are kind. You don't fight me and we talk. I feel warm being with you. Is this 'liking'?”

Despite Nincada feeling no special emotions while saying this, Kirlia felt a tear form in one of her eyes.

“Yes,” she said quietly, careful not to let her voice tremble.

“That's nice,” Nincada said contentedly. “Does this make us... friends?”

“Of course!” Kirlia said, regaining her composure.

Nincada didn't talk for a few moments; instead he enjoyed the warm feeling flowing through him. He liked having a friend.

“Will we be friends forever?” Nincada asked curiously, his voice still lacking any emotion.

“Of course!” Kirlia smiled.

“...Promise?” Nincada said, when he suddenly realised how sad it would make him if he were to have no friends again. Without any meaning, longing had crept into his voice.

“Promise,” she confirmed happily.

And the duo walked on; one feeling some of the best emotions of his life, and the other marvelling at the joy radiating off the other.



Chapter 20 - Intervention (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=16750878#postcount=144)

TheBlackDuelist
4th July 2013, 3:11 AM
I'm here from the review game :) Let's get to it.

Now, since I haven't read your first chapter I have absolutely no idea what is going on xD That said, I can still review this baby.

- Opening (did it make you want to read onwards? Did it lack a hook? How so?)
- I believe that the opening scene with Jack looking through the library, acting like a Mighteyna. Definitely got me interested in finding out what exactly is he so jumpy and excited for. Although this was nice, for those who haven't seen the previous chapters, it wouldn't hurt to add in after a few chapters "The Story so far". This could greatly help keeping new readers up to par and so that they don't get confused half way there.

- Scene (what stood out to you in a particular scene? Was it good or bad? How so?)
- What stood out to me in this particular scene, was when Jack was getting picked up by the woman and started acting all nervous and shy. I'm usually a tough man but damn that got to me, made me even go awww for a moment. Fluffy is good, and is definitely an aspect of writing that most author's should learn how to perfect, and you sir have done it well. Especially for the woman the way she said her lines made it all the more convincing of her character.

“What's the matter, honey?” she cooed as she lifted him up from under his outstretched arms. Jack just pushed his face into her shoulder, certain that the person would still be looking at him. He heard his Mum apologise to the librarian before walking out the room and setting off down the stairs, all the while trying to get a peep out of her son.

Gets me every time :P



(Writing (too flowery? Too many adverbs? Too old fashioned for a high-school drama romance? Perfect match? How so?)
- Your writing style is quite readable and a breath of fresh air from the usual styles of writing that are posted here. You have great descriptions, and each of the character's lines sound perfect for their characters. I don't know how better to say it.

- Dialogue (how did it flow? Awkward? Didn't fit the age group that were speaking? Forced? How so?)
As I mentioned earlier, the dialogue was very well done, and it seems as if your chapters are sparking with improvement with every new one posted. I'm going to be quite blown out of my seat when I read your final chapter and compare it to your old work.

The Great Butler
16th July 2013, 9:58 AM
Sorry for how long this took to get around to.




Chapter 19
Research

Jack liked prowling through the library book shelves. It made him feel like a Mightyena on the hunt, peeking through a foliage of books, his feet padding gently on what he imagined was a carpet of moss and grass.

On all fours he crept along, feeling comforted by his proximity to the shelves and floor in the semi-abandoned library. He knew nobody could see him, purely because he was alone in this particular row. He knew his Mum was somewhere near the door on the other side of the room, probably in deep conversation, but he'd saw some other kids a bit older than him during his initial run through the place. He could just about hear them and, grinning in excitement, he began to crawl towards the source of low murmurs.

This is some great description to start out, very detailed and vivid. I feel like I should know Jack already, though, because you named him right away.


Occasionally rising to two legs, the boy slunk from one row of books to another before spotting the children – although he could see they were really more like teenagers – sitting at a table in a central location of the large library. The boy shuddered happily; he felt so secret, so skilful having crept up on these people unawares. With only half the side of his face poking around the edge of the shelf, he decided, like any good-natured six-year-old, to spy on them.

There were three of them: a boy whose face was hidden, immersed in a leather-bound book; beside him, a bored-looking girl reading a book off the table whilst balancing her head on her hand and tapping her fingers absent mindedly, and one other person next to her, staring right at Jack.

It's interesting that you're choosing to introduce the main characters into this chapter by using the eyes of a secondary bystander. I think that gives it a bit of a unique spin that makes it feel fresh.


The boy instantly snapped back behind the shelf, a cold bolt of shock quickly running through him. Recovering after a few seconds he looked around again, only to see the teen still looking at him.

Jack couldn't tell if it were a boy or a girl – its features seemed to blend from one gender to the other whilst looking completely normal. Very normal. Jack wondered if he would even have noted the person if it weren't for those scary, wide eyes that seemed to look right through him. Or that demonic, over-large grin plastered on its face.

Not sure whether to be laughing or terrified, and even though I know who it is from beta-ing the chapter, the creepiness factor is still effective on me. You did that scene well.


Jack didn't feel like a brave Mightyena any more. The person was scaring him. With just one look back, he ran through the room, book dashing past him until he was burying himself in his Mum's thigh.

“What's the matter, honey?” she cooed as she lifted him up from under his outstretched arms. Jack just pushed his face into her shoulder, certain that the person would still be looking at him. He heard his Mum apologise to the librarian before walking out the room and setting off down the stairs, all the while trying to get a peep out of her son.

Back at the chair, the 'person' looked longingly after the child.

“What a cute kid,” Celebi sighed.

Okay, now I had to laugh. Celebi's quite the amusing presence.


“Shh,” was all Edward replied as he eagerly flipped the page.

“Oh, shh yourself. When can we go?” Nuria moaned.

“Look,” Edward said with an ounce of frustration, pushing his book in front of her, “how about you look through the list and see who it could be?”

I missed the interactions these two had. It's always great to read a new chapter from you because of them.


Sighing, Nuria aligned the book and began to read.

“Ho-oh. Apparently brought other Legendaries back to life. Probably not the killer. Mew. Apparently created all life. Probably not the killer. Mewtwo and Genesect. Apparently made in labs years ago. Probably aren't the killers.”

“Come on, stop with the sarcasm. Instead of who it isn't, who could it be?”

“Well,” Nuria said complacently, flicking to a page with a dark, malevolent illustration of a shadow with nightmarish eyes, “Darkrai looks iffy as hell to me.”

“We're not going to label someone as a mass murderer because they look 'iffy'.”

“Then why are we going to?” she said pointedly, snapping the book shut. She underlined the book title with her finger: “'Pokemon Myths and Legends'. Myths. Legends. Who knows how much of this is right or not? Speaking of which,” she flicked through it quickly, “look – 'Celebi, commonly referred to as 'The Voice of Ilex Forest', is rumoured to live in and protect this ancient-' - see? So we know most of this is a load of Ponyta poop.”

Maybe I'm screaming at windmills here, but why does this feel like a major hint to the killer's identity? Why do I suddenly get the feeling that Celebi could be the killer? That would be a hell of a twist...


“I liked Ilex,” Celebi said in wonder looking around the room with fascination.

“Speaking of which,” Nuria said, turning to Celebi, “can you drop the human thing. You're freaking me out and I swear you just scarred a little kid for life.”

Celebi pouted.

“But it's so fun being hidden so well. Nobody would suspect a human!”[/quote[

This comes off as tempting to see as foreshadowing too...

[quote]“But,” she said, passing the book back to an eager Edward, “nobody in a thousand miles would think you're really human.”

The librarian popped her head around a corner and hushed her at the same time as Edward did. She gave up and, out of complete boredom, lay her head on the table and covered herself with her hands.

Evidently that librarian doesn't see anything too suspicious about Celebi.


Edward flipped through the book for the umpteenth time. Moltres? In a Pokeball. And it didn't seem right that any of the other birds would be crazily evil. What about the dogs? No, that doesn't seem right either, Edward thought, one of a trio being different doesn't fit. Regigigas? No, that built the continents or something.

“Thoughts, Celebi?” Edward asked, frustrated.

“I fancy more candy floss,” it intoned, causing Nuria to knead her own head.

“No, about who the killer might be.”

“Oh. No clue. I've lived too long to remember such fine details about my past.”

I swear, I can so easily see this thing turning out to be evil.


“Like a whole bloody planet being annihilated?” Nuria seethed.

“Stuff like that happens all the time,” Celebi shrugged. “Worlds live, worlds die. But that candy floss...”

“I'd kill you if you weren't so immortal. And stop looking at me like that!”

“But you said you didn't like me being invisible.”

“But what I meant was-”

“Look,” Edward cut over, “how about you just tell us which Legends you think might be evil or not then we can leave.”

Celebi's human face strained in concentration.

“Well... Mewtwo always seemed... brisk when I invited it out...”

Mewtwo's too obvious, plus, unless you give it a new backstory it isn't exactly ancient.


“But Mew itself must have been a barrel of laughs,” Nuria commented sarcastically.

“Yes, actually – we once went to this fairground in the year-”

Wait, something just hit me, even though it doesn't have much to do with this line. This line just triggered it.

What if the "killer" is more than one creature?


Nuria jumped up suddenly.

“Eddy. We're leaving. I can't take this whiny god while feeling trapped in such a stupidly boring area.”

Is "whiny" really the best word to use? Celebi wasn't whining, really.


“Libraries aren't-” Edward started.

“Leaving.” Nuria pulled Edward up firmly. “Now.”

Sighing, Edward carefully collected up the book and his bag and headed over to the book take-out. After scanning the book and using his Pokedex to verify his identity, he received the receipt – the name of the book followed by 'Must return within 30 days'. Edward couldn't help but chuckle slightly. The world on the brink of apocalypse, and they still want their books back.

I like that little detail of using the Pokedex to verify one's identity. It's a neat little worldbuilding detail to see at a time like this.

And yeah, somehow I get the feeling the library won't be seeing that book again.


Edward shuffled hurriedly after Nuria and slowly followed behind her downstairs – Damn these ribs impose a dumb speed limit, he thought bitterly. He didn't bother looking back on Celebi; he knew it would pop up sooner or later.

“Last time I ever let you drag me in a library,” Nuria muttered.

They got to the ground floor: here the stacks and shelves shared space with the odd glass case exhibiting some oceanic wonder: although he wanted to stay and fawn over the remnants of the library's museum days, he sense Nuria might stab him with a book if he tried.

I'm not sure why you used a colon twice in this part, but I must apologize as I would have corrected it in the beta had I noticed it. A semicolon could go in the place of the first one, and the second one should be a period.


Soon they were out: the gloomy sky like a placard to the pair, as if shouting 'Get a move on'. Subconsciously taking the message in, they quickened their pace, turning right around the library and back towards the northward route.

It took a few awkward seconds for someone to break the silence.

“So,” Nuria said, “you got a plan for the electric gym?”

“It'll probably be a breeze if Mudkip evolves by then,” Edward replied, manoeuvring gently to get his Pokedex whilst inflicting minimal damage on his chest. After getting to the correct section, he enlarged the Mudkip diagram.

Just want to point out that I like how Edward's injury actually did not go away immediately. It continues to be relevant, which is good.


“This says he should have evolved by now,” Edward voiced frustratedly.

“Just give it a few levels,” Nuria encouraged. “You're lucky to have Nincada as it is: if neither evolve then you'll have at least one ground-type. I, on the other hand, am stuck with a water, grass and psychic type.” She looked over at Edward for a second. “The Gym Leader has a Magneton, right?”

“Magnezone,” Edward corrected whilst scrolling through his other Pokemon.

I think I like how you're playing levels a little loosely; overall, you've used them in a much better fashion than most writers.

Magnezone was a surprise.


“Darn,” she cursed, sinking into her own thoughts.

“You shouldn't worry either: Kirlia seems over-powered enough for anything.”

Nuria chuckled.

“I suppose. Speaking of Kirlia, guess what level she is?”

“Thirty.”

“Close: Twenty-nine. Soon” she gloated, “I shall have a fabulous Gardevoir.”

I can just visualize Nuria being smug here, and I really like it.


“Whatever,” Edward said as he put his Pokedex away. “And how are the rest doing?”

“Both at sixteen.”

“I'd cough 'favouritism' at you, but I don't think my ribs could take it,” Edward commented sarcastically as they approached the route.

“Hey, training Shellder, like, ten levels in one day isn't that bad, is it? He's getting along fairly well – barely scratched by any physical attack.”

This is a good, believable discussion about levels. Usually it can come off as awkward, but it feels like an ordinary, everyday concept to them.


“And Bayleef? Didn't that evolve at sixteen?” Edward thought for a second. “Hang on, when was the last time you actually used Bayleef?”

“Shall we go through the trees?” Nuria asked, completely ignoring Edward's question. They had just reached the threshold of the route, complete with the plethora of battling trainers. “You know, to avoid unwanted battles?”

"Didn't that evolve at sixteen" feels like a bit of a rude way for Edward to phrase that question. I can believe why he might be rude here, though.

Nuria's bringing up the proposal to avoid unwanted battles (and ignoring Edward in the process) is strange. Something is clearly up with her, because she was just talking about how Edward should train Mudkip to evolve.


“Sure,” Edward said off-handedly.

They took a sharp left and found a shaded opening in the trees far from the battling trainers – with any hope, Edward thought, they wouldn't be seen at all. However...

“How about you send out Kirlia?” Edward asked as the approached the trees. Edward realised that, whilst containing an easily-walkable track, the dense trees prevented much light getting in.

“Is poor Eddy afwaid of the dark?” Nuria taunted happily, though releasing Kirlia regardless.

“Shut-up,” was all Edward could offer in terms of a come-back. Nuria chuckled and followed Kirlia into the forest.

"as they approached the trees."

Edward and Nuria's interaction stands out again here, and it's nice to see Kirlia once more.


After perhaps half a minute of getting attuned to the light levels, Edward found there was enough room to walk beside Kirlia and Nuria.

“So how are your Pokemon doing?” Nuria asked as he walked up next to her.

“Mudkip and Nincada at eighteen and Zubat at fifteen. A little more... even than your spread.”

“Why don't you send out Nincada?” Nuria offered. Edward began to comply, but with slight hesitance. Did she sound excited?

“Why Nincada?” Edward asked as he took out his Pokeball from his pocket.

“I like Nincada. Is that such a bad thing?” Nuria asked,sounding slightly offended.

Hmm, this feels a little unusual for Nuria. Maybe my memory is just fuzzy, but something feels off about her liking Nincada this much. Maybe she's just being nicer than usual?


“No, no,” Edward said, holding his Pokeball out and tossing it gently. Before the ball rebounded to his hand, Nincada had formed, looking up at the three. Edward quickly looked over at Nuria; she seemed a little confused.

“Would you like to walk with us?” Edward asked awkwardly. Nincada nod was as awkward as Edward's question; obviously he was surprised to be invited just to 'walk'.

It is a bit surprising, but as I think about it, I guess I can see where it came from.


The now-foursome continued onwards, the group naturally splitting into Kirlia and Nincada at the front and Nuria and Edward trailing a bit behind. Nuria's pace slowed – obviously she expected Edward to do the same.

“That was weird,” she muttered under her breath so only Edward could hear.

“What? That you like Nincada?”

“Yeah... Not that there's anything I don't like about it, but...”

Nuria left the sentence hanging, focussing on the ground as she walked. Unable to find anything to say, Edward looked ahead to Kirlia and Nincada, wondering what must be going through their heads.

So she acknowledges that what happened is odd. That's good; maybe we'll get an explanation for it.


Nincada felt strange crawling beside the elegant psychic-type. Last time they had met, after all, they were about the same in terms of power and she seemed so shy. She seemed more bold now, and it was blatant who was the stronger one here; power almost radiated out of her.

This really painted a vivid picture for me. I like it.


“How are you?” Kirlia asked courteously. Nincada stiffened slightly. There it was again.

“Good,” he replied. They carried on walking for a while.

“How is training?” she asked just as kindly.

“Good,” he replied. He could feel the atmosphere tense.

The dialogue here is good, but I think you could do without the descriptors; ie the "they carried on walking for a while," "she asked just as kindly," "he could feel the atmosphere tense."


“Are you okay?” Kirlia asked, genuine concern in her voice. “You're not talking very much.”

Nincada looked away awkwardly.

“My brethren do not act in such ways...” Nincada muttered. Kirlia looked down sympathetically. Seconds passed as she thought.

Nice touch. I like that you keep in mind that these Pokemon are from different species and backgrounds, and accordingly give them differing customs and behavior.


“How are things with Edward?”

Nincada felt taken aback by the question. He'd never really thought about it before.

“Good,” he said, unsure.

“Care to elaborate?” Kirlia asked cheerily.

“What do you mean? We train, yes, and I get stronger. That is good, no?”

“But I mean, how do you get along? What does he say to you?”

Nincada thought for several moments.

“Fury Swipes, Dig, Harden-”

...This is true, and it really hit me when I realized that. This is a really good emotional bit, and you deliver it subtly instead of hitting readers over the head with it, which is another plus.


“No, no,” Kirlia interjected politely, “I mean, when you're not battling?”

“We... we don't.”

“Okay,” Kirlia responded, smiling happily. “So... do you still have that present?”

Nincada felt the well of affection build up in him for the second time.

“Yes, it lies beneath my back wing. I like present very much. Thank you.”

I'm trying to remember what the gift was, but I can't. Can you remind me?


Kirlia, being attuned to the insect's feelings, joined him in the surge of joy.

“I like you,” Kirlia said happily. Nincada tilted its head.

Ooh, I like this. Good job remembering the Kirlia family's abilities.


“Why? I have done nothing to make you like me. I did not think anyone liked me.”

Kirlia briefly thought of the childish, yet loveable, overzealous Mudkip, the uptight, solemn Zubat and...That ***** of a Bayleef.

“Because you're a nice person, silly. And why don't you think people like you?”

“Like... it is an alien concept amongst Nincada. We compete to survive. The first human I met chose me just because I was stronger than others. I fight the Pokemon I see. I'm not sure I know how to 'like'.”

“Well,” Kirlia said, less steadily, “do you like me?”

“Perhaps,” Nincada said, no emotion in his voice. “I think it so. Because you are kind. You don't fight me and we talk. I feel warm being with you. Is this 'liking'?”

Despite Nincada feeling no special emotions while saying this, Kirlia felt a tear form in one of her eyes.

“Yes,” she said quietly, careful not to let her voice tremble.

“That's nice,” Nincada said contentedly. “Does this make us... friends?”

“Of course!” Kirlia said, regaining her composure.

Nincada didn't talk for a few moments; instead he enjoyed the warm feeling flowing through him. He liked having a friend.

“Will we be friends forever?” Nincada asked curiously, his voice still lacking any emotion.

“Of course!” Kirlia smiled.

“...Promise?” Nincada said, when he suddenly realised how sad it would make him if he were to have no friends again. Without any meaning, longing had crept into his voice.

“Promise,” she confirmed happily.

And the duo walked on; one feeling some of the best emotions of his life, and the other marvelling at the joy radiating off the other.

This relationship already proves to be quite interesting. Seeing such a thing building up among two Pokemon is a nice surprise, and I'm left wondering where this will go, because it clearly is going somewhere.

That was a good chapter. It felt like it had the right amount of content, and everything seemed to flow nicely from scene to scene.

TheBlackDuelist
17th July 2013, 1:47 AM
Ok I'm here from the Review game :) I'm about to kick things off :P since I already reviewed Chapter 19, I'll take a shot at 17.


After sluggishly getting dressed and popping to the toilet

Wait....he went to the toilet? That's a rare sight, seeing an author describe their OT's time in the dumps.


the news said, globally, roughly a million people have died.

The comma in front of said sounds a bit off when I read it out loud. Consider changing it to "the news said globally, that roughly a million people have died.


Am I really that self-centered now? That I only feel sad if something directly affects me or- NO!

I really like this sentence. I believe that it is one of Edward's most defining moments as he does not want to show weakness but feels as if he should mourn.


twp against Gym Leaders

That should be two :P


Edward agreed, nodding.

This sentence reads as awkward to me. Maybe "Edward agreed as he nodded his head?"


Out of the few things he and Nuria had agreed on in their childhood, their views on contests were the same. Stupid

Now I didn't expect this lol. Although, you have hinted several times in your past chapters that Edward and Nuria detest contests so I shouldn't be all that surprised.


Literally, a Ninetales somewhere in Orre used Sunny Day, and the intense heat that followed nearly hospitalised an entire city until the effect wore off.

I really wonder if this sentence has anything to do with Groundon and Kyogure...this got me thinking.


Some random scientists in Unova think that, without Kyogre or Groudon keeping balance, any weather effect has a comparably larger effect

Annnnd you just explained it roflmao.


Just before entering the entering

Oh Oh, we got a problem here.


we'll stand a better chance again the gym if we train more.

Against


Nincada – 16, Zubat – 13, Mudkip – 16. It should have evolved by now! Edward thought exasperatedly.

xD I remember when in the games I accidentally pressed the x button. Edward must be pretty mad about that.


Nincada little head's suddenly

Nincada's



I'll stop there and call it a rap. You've noticed a few minor grammar mistakes in your writing. With simple proof reading, I'm sure you could pin point all of the errors

I have to admit your story has gotten me quite interested in happening who was the one who killed Grou and Ky. Also, it is quite rare for me to find a story that takes place in Sinnoh, so kudo`s to you my bratha.
Edward has become one of my favourite characters. He sorta reminds me of myself, of how sometimes he feels he needs to cry, but just can`t the tears to do so. Also, Nuria's personality strikes me as the typical "smart mouthed hot head" but you've done it in a way that makes it enjoyable. I'm looking forward to seeing more from you Scav :)

Scaldaver
16th December 2013, 7:28 PM
Well, it's been several months, and I don't feel I want to disturb Dragonfree or The Great Butler after all this time, so I tried (and most probably failed hilariously) at proof-reading myself several times. It's been a while since my last burst of creativity, so hopefully there aren't too many problems.

Chapter 20
Intervention

Edward watched as Nincada and Kirlia walked ahead of them, talking quietly amongst themselves. What would they have to talk about? Edward thought, wondering when the last time they'd ever met was. During our battle? No, they didn't fight then... So, that night, then?

Losing interest in the thought, Edward looked at Nuria, who in turn was observing Nincada with a suspicious gaze.

“So, they seem to be getting along,” said Edward, indicating to the Pokemon before him.

“Yeah,” muttered Nuria absent-mindedly. After a few seconds, she said, “What's wrong with Nincada's wing?”

Edward couldn't see anything wrong at first, and it was only after a few seconds he noticed how one was bent slightly more than the other.

“Is that a stone lodged under it?” Edward asked Nuria.

“Perhaps,” she mumbled, now sounding disinterested.

Unsure of what to say, Edward looked around. They'd strayed further into the trees: he could no longer make out the path of battling trainers, with only far-off, indistinguishable cries indicating there was even anything there at all.

Now fairly bored, Edward began sliding his rucksack off, careful as not to place much too strain on his chest. As he reached in to take out the book on Legendaries, he hooked his foot on a root; suddenly Nuria's hand was on his chest, preventing his fall. Despite the sharp pain coursing across his chest, he quickly yelped 'Thanks!'.

“No problem,” Nuria said, taking his bag and sliding it onto her own shoulder along with her own. Edward smiled thankfully at her and began walking, flipping his book open to the glossary as he did.

“So, how do we even know all these Legendaries even exist?” Edward wondered out loud as he scanned the first page of names. Cartath, Heatran, Methilace, Lavan, Jirachi... throughout his life he'd heard of all of them, but where was the separator between truth and legend?

“I dunno,” Nuria drawled sarcastically, some playfulness returning to her voice, “if only we had a legendary of our own to consult....oh wait.”

Edward smirked and looked behind him. No Celebi, not even a shimmer.

“So,” he said slightly louder, “can we get some help figuring this out?”

No response.


“Celebi?” he called, turning his head.

Nothing.

“Good riddance,” Nuria remarked taking the book from Edward and reading through it herself.

“Where do you think it's gone?” Edward asked.

“1366? Space-Slateport? How am I supposed to know? It'll probably return when it decides to annoy us some more.”

“Well, alright then... and I suppose it would have brought it up if we mentioned a false Legendary at the library, right?,” Edward said uneasily, turning his attention back to the book in Nuria's hand. And if it forgets? I wouldn't put it past getting it having so much fun Arceus-knows-where that it completely forgets us.

“I dunno, Eddy, it seemed too distracted by the wonders of being human, don't you think?'

Edward grunted lazily in reply, frustrated he hadn't thought to ask the question earlier. It's a Legendary Pokemon for crying out loud, I shouldn't need to point out these little things!

After a few more minutes of walking and reading, something occurred to Edward.

“Hang on, you dodged that conversation earlier about Bayleef. What's with you and her?”

Nuria's silence hung in the air for a short while, her grip tightening on the book.

“It's nothing really. We just came to an agreement is all.”

Edward arched his eyebrows.

“Oookay. Care to elaborate, or...?” Nuria shifted uneasily, closing the book but keeping it in her hands.

“Back at Dewford – or at least what was left – I needed her to battle you so... well, you know, but she didn't want anything to do with that. I asked her if she wanted me to release her after-”

“Whoa! Seriously?” Edward couldn't believe what he was hearing. Nuria would have thrown away her starter Pokemon to prove a point to him?

“Shut-up,” she grumbled, “and let me finish. She was a bit peeved I was so willing to suggest that, but to be honest at the time I was angry with her and fairly wet and cold so I didn't really care. She told me that, despite hating me and all other humans, she still wanted to mature and grow stronger, and she reckoned that would only be possible if I took her around with me.

“But there was a catch. She said that, if I ever wanted to use her in a battle, right, I won't be able to issue commands, and have to let her decide how she battles.”

Nuria paused for a few seconds, as though consolidating all she just said.

“So?” Edward asked carefully. “It could have gone much worse.” Edward noticed her knuckles turn white as she now practically strangled the book.

“'So?'? So I'll look like an idiot trainer who can't even control her starter. And you know how stupid Pokemon can be during battle: moves take up so much of their concentration they get confused if they use much more than four in a battle, so strategy isn't their strong point. And besides, would you trust the Pokemon who'd previously tried to skin an Archen?”

Edward couldn't find anything to say, but still he couldn't see what the big issue was. If Bayleef wanted a bit of freedom, so what? And if it got... rowdy again then wouldn't Nuria just be able to recall it? What's the big fuss about?

Feeling uncomfortable, Edward just looked ahead, noting that Kirlia was now almost marching ahead, viscously kicking small pebbles out of her way, to Nincada's obvious confusion.

Out of nowhere, a Houndoom clenched its teeth around Kirlia's body.

For a few seconds, absolutely nothing happened. Edward stopped, Nuria stopped, Nincada stopped, and even the Houndoom paused for a second. Kirlia's face was frozen in an image of confusion, trying to move the arms clamped to her sides.

Nincada was the first to react, jumping at the demon dog claws-first. Then Edward and Nuria were throwing their hands into their pockets, dragging out as many Pokeballs as possible and throwing them between themselves and the creature.

As four Pokemon materialised, the Houndoom snorted a thin shot of fire at Nincada, knocking it back to the ground.

“Dig!” Edward screeched, aware Nuria was also shouting but couldn't hear what. He shouted hurried orders and Mudkip and Zubat, and despite the orders being gibberish, the message was clear: help Kirlia.

Now Kirlia was screaming and thrashing, rivers of blood streaking from the area beneath Houndoom's maw. Edward could sense her panic like a homing beacon: the fangs were buried in her arms, literally pinning them to her body.

As Nincada disappeared below ground, Mudkip launched a jet of water at the dog, pushing it back slightly but obviously not doing much damage. Nincada flew in close to try a Wing Attack, but Shellder's Water Gun hit it in the back, propelling him into the Houndoom. Houndoom replied with a torrent of fire from its half-closed mouth, burning around Kirlia's body toward Zubat and Mudkip. Kirlia's scream intensified, but Houndoom brutally shook its head and Kirlia fell limp, its body bending over the sides of the jaws.

Beside him, Nuria fell to the ground.

Edward crouched down to her, ignoring the pain in his ribs, and saw how white her face had become. Her eyes, although closed,were red and puffy, and her lips were bleeding, from what appeared to be... teeth marks?Then he realised: just a second before, Nuria had been screaming alongside her Kirlia. In his shock, Edward couldn't even contemplate any meaning to this. He was now transfixed on the Houndoom as it let Kirlia fall, broken, to the ground and let out a loud howl.

Houndoom. Everywhere.

From all directions, at least ten of them bounded from the bushes and brambles into open view, each closing in on a separate target. Edward was pushed to the ground as something leapt into his back.

And now he was on the floor, his body oddly limp, the only indication of panic being his elated heartbeat. He heard the other Pokemon shriek in surprise and agony, but before he could look up, the hair on the back of his neck stood as he heard the deep, threatening growl inches from his skull. He couldn't think. He scrambled his arms to try and move, but the Houndoom pinned his arms to the ground. Choking back a dry sob, Edward felt every muscle in his body tense up and he waited for the inevitable.

And waited.

And waited.

And waited.

His heartbeat was now a constant hum, and that was all he could focus on. He didn't even feel the popping of his ears as the air pressure suddenly increased. Or the release of pressure as Houndoom leapt off of him. He didn't notice any of this, and only after curling up into a ball and rocking himself for half a minute did he realise that he was safe.

Surprised, he roughly wiped his bleary eyes with his sleeves and looked up. Bayleef, Zubat, Shellder, Mudkip, Zubat, Kirlia, even Nincada: all the Pokemon were on the floor, motionless save for the irregular spasms indicating painful breaths, covered in bloody gashes and charred skin.

How could this have happened? he wondered. Steadily he rose and immediately noticed Nuria had been lying behind him, with Celebi several feet above, looking intently into her face. She looked calmer now, her flesh returned to its original colour and her lips healed as though no blood had been shed there. In the instant upon seeing her, he also saw how her hand was stuck in her rucksack at an awkward angle, as though she had tried to pull something out.

“What-” Edward began, but the Legendary raised its arm, cutting him off. He quickly felt up and down his body: despite the ribs, he couldn't feel much damage. He realised with a start that he didn't even feel particularly bad – now the shock was wearing away, there was a strange calm in him.

Well, this can't really compare to nearly drowning and meeting a shed-load of Legendaries in less than a week.

Even through this rationale, Edward seemed surprised with his own steadiness as he recalled each of his Pokemon. I could have actually died, he thought, but even then there was no particular stab of panic. Am I in shock? Or just getting used to this?.

All his Pokemon now in their Pokeballs, he knelt to Nuria's abandoned Pokeballs and began to recall hers. As he picked up Kirlia's, however, Celebi swooped in front of him, pushing the ball out of his grip onto the ground.

“What-” Edward began again, but now Celebi used words to cut over him as it looked curiously between Nuria and Kirlia.

“Kirlia imprinted a psychic link with Nuria some time ago, probably unintentionally. In times of severe emotional output they'll both experience the same thing.”

Edward couldn't decide whether he felt more perturbed because of what he was hearing or how serious Celebi seemed to be acting. Then he realised.

“So, when Houndoom bit Kirlia-”

“Nuria experienced the pain too, yes. A human's pain threshold is vastly inferior to most Pokemon, and this attack nearly killed Kirlia. I've removed her memory of this to prevent severe shock symptoms.”

“And Kirlia?” Edward asked, his throat dry.

“Her body had shut down, but her mind remained active. I healed her most major wounds but she asked me not to take her memory. As a Pokemon she will be able to deal with the shock, but I'll keep my eye on her. Any more questions?”

Edward took a few deep breaths. Everything would be okay. Nuria and Kirlia were safe, as were he and the rest of the Pokemon. Something didn't make sense, however.

“Pokedexes are meant to scan the area for hostile Pokemon. What happened to that?”

Celebi replied without skipping a beat:

“Kirlia had been sensing the area using her psychic energy to scan all living life-forms. This psychic field distorts the space around her, thus distorting the electromagnetic field around each Pokedex which detects the hormones of aggressive Pokemon. As the Houndoom are genetically immune to psychic wavelengths, Kirlia could not sense them, so the Houndoom were a shock to everyone, most of all Kirlia.”

Edward closed his eyes, trying to make sense of it all.

“And where were you?”

From behind its back Celebi produced a small pink puff-ball.

“Candy floss?”

Edward groaned, kneading his head as he sank to a crossed-leg position.

“How is she now? Physically?”

“She's okay, but when she wakes up she'll be dazed and will want to know what happened.”

Edward considered the possibilities. Taking her to a Pokemon Centre or hospital would be suspicious, and there's definitely be an investigation. They might want to keep her longer for treatment... and if the Pokemon mention what's happening? Edward quickly scanned his memory, then bit his lip in frustration. How did I forget to tell Nincada not to tell anyone what was going on? What if he mentions Regice to a nurse? If we stay here though, they'd come back and-

“No, they won't. As long as they feel my presence, they won't come near us.”

Edward sighed, looking around for any place where they could shelter for a while.

Suddenly he was sitting in a small, cosy plain. The light was dim, the little light getting through the canopy having little to illuminate but the moss-strewn floor.

“We're not too far from where we were, don't worry,” Celebi muttered, still examining the space between Nuria and Ralts, each of whom had also appeared in the area. After a few seconds, the Legendary looked at Edward.

“Okay, recall Kirlia now.” As Edward raised Kirlia's Pokeball, Edward could have sworn he saw Kirlia begin to try and stand.

“So,” Celebi said, its previous enthusiasm returning, “what do you want to do now?”

Edward lay back on the moss, wondering what he was even supposed to be thinking at a time like this. I could have died. But I didn't. But Nuria got hurt. But now she's okay. He tucked his hands under his head. There's something wrong with me, he decided finally.

Edward turned to his side, and as he did he rolled onto the book of Legendaries. Picking it up and flicking it open, he held it up for Celebi to see.

“You mind going through this with me and telling me who's real and who isn't?”

Celebi bit its lip, as though considering all the other fun stuff it could go and have throughout the entirety of the past.

“Okay,” it said reluctantly, and hovered over to lie on the moss next to Edward. Looking over to Nuria again, he passed the book to Celebi (who had the mass of candy floss held between its front teeth) and crawled the short distance over to her.

What were you trying to get? Edward wondered, gently sliding the bag off her arm. With only a few of the contents spilling out, the bag came off relatively easily.

Edward's heart leapt momentarily as he realised the gun in Nuria's hand was now facing him square in the chest.

In a flash he rolled out of the way, and, after catching his breath slightly and rubbing his protesting ribs, gently uncurled Nuria's fingers from around the weapon, letting it fall. Arms shaking, he awkwardly picked it up, making sure his fingers were completely clear of the trigger.

Seeing it clearly in the light for the first time, Edward pondered over where she could have got it. A shop? No, probably not. Her Mum? Well... could she have been the sort? Edward bit his lip as he thought of Nuria's affectionate, kindly Mum, and wondered exactly how far she might have gone in the name of self defence.

Gingerly replacing the weapon, face down, in her rucksack, Edward exhaled and crawled back over to Celebi, leaving the bag halfway between them.

“So, found any fakes?” Edward asked as he rolled onto his back next to the deity. Celebi nodded and smiled, flipping back to the glossary page.

“Yep, though I'm not sure about some.”

“Not sure?” Edward asked, intending for there to be incredulity in his voice, but instead was just monotonous.

“Poor memory. Most I know for certain do exist, so why don't we just go through them?”

“Sure,” Edward said, his interest starting to build slightly. Despite knowing he'd have to battle whatever really existed in this book, he could never pass up on learning more about the Legendary Pokemon he'd loved to research as he grew up.

“So,” Celebi said, nestling into the moss to make itself comfortable, carefully balancing the ball of candy floss on its little belly, “where do you want to start?”



Chapter 21 - Legends (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=16766430#postcount=147)

Dragonfree
16th December 2013, 9:04 PM
Great to see you're still going.

I don't have the time for a very detailed review right now, but I'll comment on some stuff that stuck out.

Overall you seem to have done a pretty decent job of proofreading, although I'm assuming the italics tags weren't part of that since at least two or three of them have some kind of typo in them.

It seemed a little off to me that Edward notices a stone stuck under Nincada's wing but then forgets about it (after all, it could hurt him), but then again it sounds like Kirlia has some kind of psychic scheme going on here and she may just have diverted his attention away, as she's clearly done with Nuria.

You have a double paragraph break in one spot early on; it should be easy to find.

I'm not sure why Nuria doesn't just release Bayleef anyway if the terms of their agreement are completely unacceptable to her - it's not as if Bayleef could force her to train her if she doesn't want to. Having Bayleef clearly isn't doing Nuria any good if she refuses to ever use her, so releasing just seems like a better option for everyone.

It seems a bit weird how first Edward's reaction to the Houndoom is kind of over-the-top - curling into a ball and crying for a minute without noticing the Houndoom is gone seems especially melodramatic - but then afterwards he seems completely unfazed and assumes he's just gotten used to his life being in danger, which is not at all what his reaction during indicates. I guess Celebi may have been messing with his emotions, but either way it's weird for him to think he's getting used to it when just earlier he was reacting really badly. Unless Celebi erased his memory of it too and he didn't even notice?


As the Houndoom are genetically immune to psychic wavelengths, Kirlia could not sense them, so the Houndoom were a shock to everyone, least of all Kirlia.
"Least of all" is only used when you're describing something in the negative - so you could use it if you had e.g. "so nobody noticed the Houndoom, least of all Kirlia." As it is, since you're saying the Houndoom were a shock to everyone, you'd have to use something like "especially Kirlia".


Taking her to a Pokemon Centre or hospital would be suspicious, and there's definitely be an investigation.
Why, though? They didn't do anything wrong - they were just walking around with a Kirlia without realizing it was disrupting the Pokédex's wild Pokémon scan function. Then they could just say the Houndoom were scared off somehow but they didn't get to see what it was that scared them. It's hardly implausible or suspicious that some good samaritan wild Pokémon with a type advantage could have happened upon the scene, for instance. Even if it seems odd, I can't see any reason anyone would investigate them because of this - nothing bad happened that they could be held responsible for.

I really like that Nuria was reaching for the gun, and still enjoy just how much its existence freaks out Edward.


Gingerly replace it carefully, face down, in her rucksack, Edward exhaled and crawled back over to Celebi, leaving the bag halfway between them.
That should be "replacing", although having two "-ing" clauses in the same sentence is a bit awkward do I'd reword it somehow. "Gingerly replacing it carefully" is also both awkward and redundant.

Right now the Houndoom encounter seems a bit out of nowhere, but it's fine if it has consequences that matter as the story goes on - I was just expecting Kirlia to have died or something but the way Celebi describes it it ultimately did no lasting harm to anyone, and being that right now there doesn't seem to be a relevant reason this happened it should be pretty well connected on the other side.

Scaldaver
16th December 2013, 10:44 PM
Thanks for the mini - review, Dragonfree! I'll edit the errors you pointed out, and try to better explain what I was thinking in each case. To save you having to read it again, here's what I meant to say in some of the cases:

1) I meant for Edward's change in dealing with the panic afterwards as having been changed so severely: the shock of being attacked by Houndoom made him panic in a way most people would, I presume, but after he finds it weird that there's little long-lasting impact.

2) I feel Edward would feel any investigation focused on him or Nuria with even the slightest possibility of him being detained would be pretty bad, all things considered.

As for Nuria's logic for not wanting to be without her starter, I guess I kinda assumed people would think Nuria wouldn't want to be without her starter. Then again, as with all these points, I've never been very good at gauging the thoughts of other people. Thanks so much for helping this become clearer, and thanks for pointing out the grammar errors!

EDIT: You were right on the melodrama of his initial reaction: I decided to tone it down (even though I reference it earlier in his head, the facts that he had endured worse was for some reason not at the forefront of my mind). Thanks!

Scaldaver
21st December 2013, 10:11 PM
Well, here's another chapter right off the bat to compensate for the wait! I hope you all like this one: it's been building in my head for a while and I thought now was the best time to give it my all!

Chapter 21
Legends

Edward locked onto the first name he saw.

“Lavan.”

“Nope – doesn't exist, I don't think. From what I recall, the people of Johto came up with it inadvertently after changing the legend of Heatran.”

“So Heatran exists, then?”

“Yes – it spends most of its time living in volcanically active areas, though Sinnoh appears to be its most regular residence.”

“Okay.” Edward felt himself getting excited: I'm the only human alive to know this! This is so cool!

“Now,” Edward said, trying to keep his composure professional, “how about... Ho-oh?”

Celebi scrunched its eye-lids shut in concentration, passed the book to Edward and put its little paws over its face. Edward held the book above both of them and began scanning the index.

“Y...eeees. I think. No, wait, yeah I'm sure. It exists, and like to live around.... um...”

“Ecruteak City?” Edward asked, having eagerly flipped onto Ho-oh's section in the book. It's artwork at the top of the page was poorly defined but brimming with bright tones of gold, red and orange, giving Edward an indication of where its plumage lay.

“Yes! That's it! And another one... I think you call it Lugio?”

“Lugia,” Edward said, looking at the page opposite Ho-oh's. The two nicely juxtaposed each other: whereas the Ho-oh section was light, bright and inscribed with golden text, the Lugia section was darker, yet comfortingly so with quiet shades of grey and silver brimming the borders, the text itself in reflective silver.

“Man, you're good. Lugia prefers life under water, so that may be pretty difficult to track. Ho-oh also like high places in general, to that at least narrows down the areas we might find it.”

“Hey, why does Lugia live underwater when it's a psychic and flying-type?”

Celebi snorted, removing its paws from its face and looking over up to the book.

“Types are moot when it comes to Ancients. Technically, the concept of types is just a human classification system, and supposed weaknesses and strengths are just shared attributes. It would be more accurate to label Ancients as 'Every single type'.”

“So, they're super weak to rock-type Pokemon?” Edward replied sarcastically, remembering the small bit of trivia from school. Celebi giggled slightly.

“Good one. No, they're not really 'weak' to anything – even Ancients find it hard to do serious damage to one another.”

Edwards excitement froze when he momentarily considered the implications of the strength of the killer, but this melted back into enthusiasm as he flipped the page.

“Ooh – what about Trenta – the one who grew all the world's plants?” The page was covered with dense variations of green at the top and spider-web thin, intricate pathways of brown roots at the bottom, the text changing from brown to green to remain visible. Edward recalled the figure shown as an image he used in a school presentation when he was younger: a Pokemon looking like a great bush, a ring of roots and vines pushing out of the ground in a circle around it, waving them impressively as the great bush-creature bared a jaw of thorns and bristles, there being no eyes or other recognisable figures.

“No,” Celebi said bluntly, its eyes scanning the page intently. “From what I remember, that one was made up when a group of villagers saw a... I can't remember its name, but it looks like a tree. It's been a while since I've seen one.”

“Oh,” Edward said, frowning slightly. He raised his finger to point to the next page, but Celebi shook its head.

“Sandarvarkin isn't real either. I've no clue what inspired this, except for old hikers warning people to stay on guard in deserts.”

Edward turned the page, onto where Nuria had found Darkrai, with Cresselia on the adjacent page. Edward noted the new/full moon theme, but couldn't help agree with Nuria when she had said Darkrai looked 'iffy'. And that is without even factoring in the nightmare aspect! How could anything natural look so evil?

“Yep! Definitely, I've known them for ages. Oddly enough most of the stories are true here: Darkrai feeds off the fear of sleeping people, and Cresselia feeds off their security.”

“Hang on, if they're Legendaries, why do they need to feed?” Celebi shrugged.

“Why do I like sweets? Cos they taste nice! You're right, we don't technically need to eat, but it's still a pleasure to eat and drink.”

“So, is there a specific place they like to stay?” Edward mentally prayed Darkrai lived far, far away and Cresselia was just around the corner.

“No,” Celebi said, sounding frustrated. “Darkrai darts around from place to place, whereas Cresselia has a few places she likes more than others. But with this killer on the loose, I suppose they could move anywhere.”

“Wait, 'she?” Edward turned his head to Celebi. “I thought you were all genderless.”

Celebi's paws flew to its cheeks and tried to muffle its laughter; Edward was given the impression of a young teenager giggling at something rude. It quickly composed itself, however, and explained with a wry smile.

“Ancients are just the last of their kind, remember? Of course they have genders – most just forget them after a while. Cresselia clearly remembers being a female, and some, like Heatran, constantly forget which one it is.”

Edward began to nod, then registered all of what the Legendary had casually just revealed.

“Wait, what?!” Edward remarked incredulously, shifting a little away from the little Legendary to look at it fully. Celebi looked confused.

“What? Oh, haven't I told you yet? Sorry, I thought that would have been one of the first things I would have mentioned! Yeah, Ancients – well, at least the small-scale ones – haven't been around forever. Planets form in their own course, then life, and when a world gains sufficient variety of sentient life Arceus gives power to a select few Pokemon, who have their power increased to the point of immortality. As a result they outlive their fellow species, surviving so long they eventually forget all about this.”

Edward couldn't fully comprehend what he was hearing. This is massive! Why does it speak of this as though it's common knowledge?

“Okay... could you explain further?” Edward said as he ran these breath-taking new facts over in him mind again.

“How so?” Celebi asked innocently, nibbling some more at the diminished candy floss.

“Well... why does Arceus do this? And didn't it go to sleep after making the universe, so how would it even do this?”

“Ah, missed out another bit. You see, whereas it's Arceus who actually deals with mortal stuff, God Himself is the one who fell asleep. Remember, God created an entire universe: even in a comatose state He is able to observe and act in the universe, but in doing so has to thoroughly condense His power into a single being to effectively bear some of His consciousness.” The book jutted out of Edwards hands slightly higher into the air, the pages fluttering wildly until settling on a large, two-page exposition entitles 'Arceus'. The borders consisted of pure, white clouds, allowing only a little golden light through. In the centre, across both pages, stood Arceus looking upward, the shining sun behind it.

“This is the vessel it uses to observe and alter the world, containing a fraction of God's true power. You call this being Arceus.

“Regarding the need for Ancients: it's just the compartmentalisation of jobs; give each planet its own balancing system so He needn't bother look over them.”

Celebi paused. Edward found himself out of breath. This literally disproves every religion and everything we knew about the universe. Still, Edward didn't feel as...insignificant as he expected. I know the beginning of the universe... shouldn't I feel... humbled or something?

Steadying his breaths, he explored the feeling rising in his chest. Fear? No, not quite. Excitement? he realised, and suddenly he was grinning from ear to ear, barely able to control himself. This is so awesome! It's true – these bed-time stories are really true.

Edward looked around, the world bathed in a new, magical light he hadn't seen since he'd left for his adventure, before learning about the killer, the Legendaries and the planet's imminent destruction. Knowing that there was something out there... a God that could help... wait a second...

“Where's Arceus, then?” Edward asked, the feeling ebbing slightly. “If it has all this power and the ability to meddle with the lives a planet's population, where is it?”

“The universe is a big place: trust me, I've seen it. And God made it so Arceus has to obey the laws of the universe in a more... linear fashion. Although its power greatly surpasses even mine, it cannot time-travel as I can, restricting it to regular movement. And terrible things happen all over the place, not to mention Arceus follows the philosophy of 'everything runs its course'.”

“So... would it help?” he asked, leaning towards Celebi. The Legendary shrugged.

“No clue. I've asked it many times regarding the killer – it never gave a straight answer.”

“Okay,” Edward said, slightly deflated but still relatively earnest, “but how do Legendaries become Legendaries? Is it an over-night thing, or...?”

Celebi turned to Edward, a smile playing on its lips.

“You're really getting into this aren't you?”

“I love Legendary Pokemon stories – people in Hoenn are brought up on quite a few, and they've always been an interest for me.” Edward briefly recalled the years before a computer screen, feeling frustrated there was no exact proof of most of the legends.

“Hmm.” Celebi's smile began to widen. “Well, in that case, I guess I just have to show you.”

Before Edward could respond, Celebi planted its little paw on his forehead, and suddenly the world was left far behind.

The sky was infused with a chaotic mix of ash and cloud, lit with dark shades of orange and brown. Below, a sea shore stretched far into the distance, as far as Edward could see. The land itself sloped down from the highest visible point: a colossal, smoking volcano, impossibly tall and ludicrously thick. From here the land gradually, seamlessly, dissolved into sand, then shot steeply below the waves: a submerged cliff-face. Thin and thick rivers of lava oozed down the volcano's side, solidifying rapidly as they met the water, throwing a dense cloud of steam into the air. But weirder than this landscape were the creatures inhabiting it.

Their skin less violently red, their size vastly inferior, their features less sharp, Edward at first couldn't recognise the creatures scurrying about the land. A sense of recognition rang in his head, but it wasn't until he saw one, lying in a lava stream, did he realise for certain.

Groudons. Hundreds of them. Confusion quickly turned into ecstasy as he looked down upon the civilisation of the Legendaries. Looking closer, he saw smaller creatures, not dissimilar to their giant counterparts, densely surrounding the occasional Groudon. Although their features were far smoother and they scuttled about on four legs, there was no denying the link between them. No way...

“So, are they-”

“Yes,” Celebi intoned, obviously out to impress, “they are the stage of minor evolution before the Groudon stage.”

“Minor?” Edward asked off-handedly, too busy marvelling over the sight to focus on the answer.

“As in the quick-form of what humans call evolution, as opposed to the major, much longer form. And, if you like that, try focusing on the water...”

Edward made to turn, but realised with a start he had no body to turn with. In fact, he realised how his entire field of vision stretched completely around him, yet not disorientating him. Celebi, whom Edward noticed was also not there, appeared to latch onto his surprise.

“Oh yeah, I constructed a consciousness-sphere to take us back – it's be much simpler than constructing a time gate to constantly transport your respiratory requirements.”

Edward subconsciously attempted to inhale, finding it completely impossible. Now it was starting to get disorientating.

“Just focus on the water and I promise, you'll forget about it,” Celebi's voice promised excitedly. Shifting his attention to the tumultuous ocean, Edward saw what it had meant.

Although he had never seen a real one to compare it with, Edward could appreciate merely by artist interpretations how these Kyogres differed from the one in his time. Their fins were smaller proportional to their bodies, which were thinner and less hydrodynamic, and the ribbons he had seen in many a book upon the end of end of Kyogre's tail were merely thick lumps of flesh. They too were surrounded by smaller creatures, but, with great surprise, Edward found himself recognising these all too well. They were bigger than he'd seen at the aquariums, and their fins were far less elegant, but Edward knew for a fact they had to be Finneon.

“How?” was all the dumbfounded Edward could say. Sure, he'd noted, along a few in his classmates, the similarities between the depiction of Kyogre and Finneon, but he'd never actually thought...

Celebi's voice seemed delighted.

“I knew you'd love that! Over time, the species you see here today evolved – major, long-term evolution, mind you – to your current Finneon and Lumineon: a simple by-product of natural selection.”

Edward couldn't believe it. How could an entire species of Legendaries.... well, Legendary templates, not thrive?

“You'll see,” Celebi said mischievously, and the world around Edward was rammed into high gear. The clouds, the sea, the forests of the land – they all shifted rapidly, rising and receding, encroaching and retreating. The creatures went faster as well, but Edward somehow found himself able to latch onto patterns in their movement, something Edward immediately suspected Celebi to be behind.

As the Groudon and their young would die, other Groudon would drag them into the ocean, where the Kyogre and their young would feast on the remains. Similarly, Edward noticed when the occasional Kyogre and Finneon would die and rise to the surface, the waves pushing them to the sea shore, where the Groudon civilisation would prey upon them. A symbiotic relationship, Edward realised, recalling the phrase from his lessons in forest life.

He also noticed that, despite the lava solidifying on the ocean, the land mass never increased: as rock built up, various Kyogre would come along to erode the wall, keeping the underwater cliff-face completely smooth. But why would they... of course: to keep the colonies close enough to co-exist! Otherwise the land would expand so much the Kyogre would be too far away! Celebi grunted in appreciation, confirming Edward to be right. Edward knew that if he could still feel his body, he'd be grinning wildly.

He could also make out longer overall changes: how the sky appeared to clear, the sky becoming blue-er and the clouds turning whiter. And how gradually, almost imperceptibly, the number of Groudon and Kyogre seemed to decline.

Looking closely, he noticed that, in the case of the Groudon, they merely began dying quicker and in greater frequency. The Kyogre were dying off quicker as well, but where a Kyogre died a smaller one would take its place, then a smaller, then a smaller. Whereas the Groudon were merely dying, The Kyogre were... evolving.

And, at the point where the sky was a perfect shade of blue, the heavens split in two.

Above the land the sun's intensity slowly increased, baking the land beneath and causing the local plant-life to shrivel and die.. Above the water, increasingly thick and dark clouds began to form, the rain becoming more frequent until there was only permanent deluge. Edward remembered the type and intensity of the rain well, it having caused global destruction only recently in his time-line.

Then Edward noticed a constant – a single Kyogre and Groudon in their respective zones, growing, living, surviving longer than the rest of its species. And suddenly, as the last of the imperfect Groudons died off and the newly-formed Lumineons had left for better waters, there were only two.

With no fellows to keep them rooted, Groudon and Kyogre moved apart: Groudon across the vast land regions of the super-continent upon which it lived, Kyogre through in impossibly deep and cavernous oceans. Somehow Edward found he was able to focus on both, despite their great distance from one another, but he was to captivated by what he was watching to bring attention to this.

It became apparent over time that the newly-formed Legendaries discovered their powers over their respective elements: bit by bit Kyogre found it could swallow up the land to expand its territory to its will, whereas Groudon could lift region-sized land masses from the ocean floor. In each instance Edward saw how life immediately sunk into the new areas – alien looking Pokemon who he knew to be ancestors to his familiar modern-day ones colonising their new living spaces as they moved throughout the world.

With the inevitable momentum of a train, over what could have been centuries, the two Legendaries inched closer and closer to one another.

Time returned to its normal pace, the waves lapping slowly over sun-dried earth, the rain a deafening furor above the ocean but only the sound of wind blowing through the dying, heat-exhausted plant life on the land.

Each of the Legends looked confused, the sight of the other weather condition stumping it. Edward noticed how there was no sense of familiarity between the two: any instinct of symbiosis with the other creature had obviously evaporated long ago.

Curiously, Groudon lifted a small area of land for it to walk across into the deluge, which was immediately swamped by a tidal wave. The red titan snapped its gaze to its blue counterpart, recognising it as its defier. The world stood still for the shortest of moments, then all hell broke loose.

Suddenly he was back on the forest floor, gasping for breath as his body began to sweat with the pure adrenaline rush. That was so awesome! was all he could think for a while.

“Take me back! I need to see the rest!” Edward half-shouted a minute later at the Legendary looking at him contentedly. Reluctantly, Celebi shook its head.

“Sorry, but your mind's a delicate thing. Looking for too long at what happened... I've got to say, it's one of my favourite moments in Earth's history, but the power each of them gave off nearly destroyed the thing. The mere radiation they gave off could fry your brain, and not even I could prevent the shock to your system.”

Edward expected to feel frustrated, but could only lean back and reminisce, not wanting to forget a single detail. He closed his eyes, replaying the events in his mind over and over, finding himself laughing with awe at some of the more impressive feats or interesting details. They were gods! Edward thought appreciatively.

And, muttered the darkest crevice of his mind, you have to beat the thing which killed them.

The Great Butler
1st February 2014, 5:13 AM
Well, it's been several months, and I don't feel I want to disturb Dragonfree or The Great Butler after all this time, so I tried (and most probably failed hilariously) at proof-reading myself several times. It's been a while since my last burst of creativity, so hopefully there aren't too many problems.

I owe you an apology for taking so long to get to this review. I'm sorry.


Chapter 20
Intervention

Edward watched as Nincada and Kirlia walked ahead of them, talking quietly amongst themselves. What would they have to talk about? Edward thought, wondering when the last time they'd ever met was. During our battle? No, they didn't fight then... So, that night, then?

Losing interest in the thought, Edward looked at Nuria, who in turn was observing Nincada with a suspicious gaze.

“So, they seem to be getting along,” said Edward, indicating to the Pokemon before him.

It's interesting that you're giving the Pokemon such personality and interaction with each other. Not a lot of fics do that. I like Edward's thoughts about their interaction as well.


“Yeah,” muttered Nuria absent-mindedly. After a few seconds, she said, “What's wrong with Nincada's wing?”

Edward couldn't see anything wrong at first, and it was only after a few seconds he noticed how one was bent slightly more than the other.

“Is that a stone lodged under it?” Edward asked Nuria.

“Perhaps,” she mumbled, now sounding disinterested.

Huh, I'm kind of surprised they're not paying such a thing more mind.


Unsure of what to say, Edward looked around. They'd strayed further into the trees: he could no longer make out the path of battling trainers, with only far-off, indistinguishable cries indicating there was even anything there at all.

Now fairly bored, Edward began sliding his rucksack off, careful as not to place much too strain on his chest. As he reached in to take out the book on Legendaries, he hooked his foot on a root; suddenly Nuria's hand was on his chest, preventing his fall. Despite the sharp pain coursing across his chest, he quickly yelped 'Thanks!'.

“No problem,” Nuria said, taking his bag and sliding it onto her own shoulder along with her own. Edward smiled thankfully at her and began walking, flipping his book open to the glossary as he did.

I like how they have each others' backs like this.


“So, how do we even know all these Legendaries even exist?” Edward wondered out loud as he scanned the first page of names. Cartath, Heatran, Methilace, Lavan, Jirachi... throughout his life he'd heard of all of them, but where was the separator between truth and legend?

Nice touch mixing in some fictitious Pokemon. It helps make the whole mystery surrounding the Legendaries work more.


“I dunno,” Nuria drawled sarcastically, some playfulness returning to her voice, “if only we had a legendary of our own to consult....oh wait.”

Edward smirked and looked behind him. No Celebi, not even a shimmer.

“So,” he said slightly louder, “can we get some help figuring this out?”

No response.


“Celebi?” he called, turning his head.

Nothing.

“Good riddance,” Nuria remarked taking the book from Edward and reading through it herself.

Figures Celebi would disappear when they need it most.


“Where do you think it's gone?” Edward asked.

“1366? Space-Slateport? How am I supposed to know? It'll probably return when it decides to annoy us some more.”

I laughed at that one.


“Well, alright then... and I suppose it would have brought it up if we mentioned a false Legendary at the library, right?,” Edward said uneasily, turning his attention back to the book in Nuria's hand. And if it forgets? I wouldn't put it past getting it having so much fun Arceus-knows-where that it completely forgets us.

“I dunno, Eddy, it seemed too distracted by the wonders of being human, don't you think?'

I would like to see more on the topic of how Pokemon would feel about being human, it's a curious subject.


Edward grunted lazily in reply, frustrated he hadn't thought to ask the question earlier. It's a Legendary Pokemon for crying out loud, I shouldn't need to point out these little things!

After a few more minutes of walking and reading, something occurred to Edward.

“Hang on, you dodged that conversation earlier about Bayleef. What's with you and her?”

Nuria's silence hung in the air for a short while, her grip tightening on the book.

“It's nothing really. We just came to an agreement is all.”

Edward arched his eyebrows.

“Oookay. Care to elaborate, or...?” Nuria shifted uneasily, closing the book but keeping it in her hands.

“Back at Dewford – or at least what was left – I needed her to battle you so... well, you know, but she didn't want anything to do with that. I asked her if she wanted me to release her after-”

“Whoa! Seriously?” Edward couldn't believe what he was hearing. Nuria would have thrown away her starter Pokemon to prove a point to him?

At first I wasn't sure if I thought Edward's impression was right, but then I thought about it and I realized Nuria probably would go to great lengths to prove a point to him.


“Shut-up,” she grumbled, “and let me finish. She was a bit peeved I was so willing to suggest that, but to be honest at the time I was angry with her and fairly wet and cold so I didn't really care. She told me that, despite hating me and all other humans, she still wanted to mature and grow stronger, and she reckoned that would only be possible if I took her around with me.

“But there was a catch. She said that, if I ever wanted to use her in a battle, right, I won't be able to issue commands, and have to let her decide how she battles.”

Nuria paused for a few seconds, as though consolidating all she just said.

There's no need for a hyphen in "shut up."

I'm glad Nuria is recapping this information, since it's been so long since I read the previous chapters.


“So?” Edward asked carefully. “It could have gone much worse.” Edward noticed her knuckles turn white as she now practically strangled the book.

“'So?'? So I'll look like an idiot trainer who can't even control her starter. And you know how stupid Pokemon can be during battle: moves take up so much of their concentration they get confused if they use much more than four in a battle, so strategy isn't their strong point. And besides, would you trust the Pokemon who'd previously tried to skin an Archen?”

I can really feel Nuria's point of view here.


Edward couldn't find anything to say, but still he couldn't see what the big issue was. If Bayleef wanted a bit of freedom, so what? And if it got... rowdy again then wouldn't Nuria just be able to recall it? What's the big fuss about?

Feeling uncomfortable, Edward just looked ahead, noting that Kirlia was now almost marching ahead, viscously kicking small pebbles out of her way, to Nincada's obvious confusion.

"viciously", not viscously.


Out of nowhere, a Houndoom clenched its teeth around Kirlia's body.

This isn't a bad twist, however, it comes too much out of nowhere and it needs a lot more description around it to be effective.


For a few seconds, absolutely nothing happened. Edward stopped, Nuria stopped, Nincada stopped, and even the Houndoom paused for a second. Kirlia's face was frozen in an image of confusion, trying to move the arms clamped to her sides.

I think you should try to cut down on the amount of "stopped" and its synonyms, but then again, this sentence really isn't bad. It does get the point across.


Nincada was the first to react, jumping at the demon dog claws-first. Then Edward and Nuria were throwing their hands into their pockets, dragging out as many Pokeballs as possible and throwing them between themselves and the creature.

As four Pokemon materialised, the Houndoom snorted a thin shot of fire at Nincada, knocking it back to the ground.

This is a bit better. The imagery is clear, and I can see this scene with all of its intensity. Well done.


“Dig!” Edward screeched, aware Nuria was also shouting but couldn't hear what. He shouted hurried orders and Mudkip and Zubat, and despite the orders being gibberish, the message was clear: help Kirlia.

Now Kirlia was screaming and thrashing, rivers of blood streaking from the area beneath Houndoom's maw. Edward could sense her panic like a homing beacon: the fangs were buried in her arms, literally pinning them to her body.

Now this is quite a vivid visual, befitting of the scene. I think you could probably change that colon to a semicolon, though.


As Nincada disappeared below ground, Mudkip launched a jet of water at the dog, pushing it back slightly but obviously not doing much damage. Nincada flew in close to try a Wing Attack, but Shellder's Water Gun hit it in the back, propelling him into the Houndoom. Houndoom replied with a torrent of fire from its half-closed mouth, burning around Kirlia's body toward Zubat and Mudkip. Kirlia's scream intensified, but Houndoom brutally shook its head and Kirlia fell limp, its body bending over the sides of the jaws.

Beside him, Nuria fell to the ground.

Edward crouched down to her, ignoring the pain in his ribs, and saw how white her face had become. Her eyes, although closed,were red and puffy, and her lips were bleeding, from what appeared to be... teeth marks?Then he realised: just a second before, Nuria had been screaming alongside her Kirlia. In his shock, Edward couldn't even contemplate any meaning to this. He was now transfixed on the Houndoom as it let Kirlia fall, broken, to the ground and let out a loud howl.

Wow, this is really intense, well done. I can feel and see everything that's going on. Excellent touch with Nuria experiencing the same pain that Kirlia is, too.


Houndoom. Everywhere.

From all directions, at least ten of them bounded from the bushes and brambles into open view, each closing in on a separate target. Edward was pushed to the ground as something leapt into his back.

And now he was on the floor, his body oddly limp, the only indication of panic being his elated heartbeat. He heard the other Pokemon shriek in surprise and agony, but before he could look up, the hair on the back of his neck stood as he heard the deep, threatening growl inches from his skull. He couldn't think. He scrambled his arms to try and move, but the Houndoom pinned his arms to the ground. Choking back a dry sob, Edward felt every muscle in his body tense up and he waited for the inevitable.

"Ground" is a better word to use than "floor" considering they're outdoors. Considering the later paragraph describes Houndoom as leaping off of his back, you should say "leapt onto," not leapt into.


And waited.

And waited.

And waited.

His heartbeat was now a constant hum, and that was all he could focus on. He didn't even feel the popping of his ears as the air pressure suddenly increased. Or the release of pressure as Houndoom leapt off of him. He didn't notice any of this, and only after curling up into a ball and rocking himself for half a minute did he realise that he was safe.

That was intense. My heart was pounding right up to the end of it.


Surprised, he roughly wiped his bleary eyes with his sleeves and looked up. Bayleef, Zubat, Shellder, Mudkip, Zubat, Kirlia, even Nincada: all the Pokemon were on the floor, motionless save for the irregular spasms indicating painful breaths, covered in bloody gashes and charred skin.

How could this have happened? he wondered. Steadily he rose and immediately noticed Nuria had been lying behind him, with Celebi several feet above, looking intently into her face. She looked calmer now, her flesh returned to its original colour and her lips healed as though no blood had been shed there. In the instant upon seeing her, he also saw how her hand was stuck in her rucksack at an awkward angle, as though she had tried to pull something out.

I'm assuming Celebi drove off the Houndoom, but I'd like you to explain a bit further, because Houndoom are partially Dark-type and thus immune to Psychic-type moves.


“What-” Edward began, but the Legendary raised its arm, cutting him off. He quickly felt up and down his body: despite the ribs, he couldn't feel much damage. He realised with a start that he didn't even feel particularly bad – now the shock was wearing away, there was a strange calm in him.

Well, this can't really compare to nearly drowning and meeting a shed-load of Legendaries in less than a week.

Even through this rationale, Edward seemed surprised with his own steadiness as he recalled each of his Pokemon. I could have actually died, he thought, but even then there was no particular stab of panic. Am I in shock? Or just getting used to this?.

Why is "died" outside of the italics tags? If anything, I'd think it should be within them.


All his Pokemon now in their Pokeballs, he knelt to Nuria's abandoned Pokeballs and began to recall hers. As he picked up Kirlia's, however, Celebi swooped in front of him, pushing the ball out of his grip onto the ground.

“What-” Edward began again, but now Celebi used words to cut over him as it looked curiously between Nuria and Kirlia.

“Kirlia imprinted a psychic link with Nuria some time ago, probably unintentionally. In times of severe emotional output they'll both experience the same thing.”

Edward couldn't decide whether he felt more perturbed because of what he was hearing or how serious Celebi seemed to be acting. Then he realised.

“So, when Houndoom bit Kirlia-”

“Nuria experienced the pain too, yes. A human's pain threshold is vastly inferior to most Pokemon, and this attack nearly killed Kirlia. I've removed her memory of this to prevent severe shock symptoms.”

Hmm. Celebi simply erasing Nuria's memories feels a bit convenient, so I hope you intend to explore the whole idea of lost memories a bit more in the future.


“And Kirlia?” Edward asked, his throat dry.

“Her body had shut down, but her mind remained active. I healed her most major wounds but she asked me not to take her memory. As a Pokemon she will be able to deal with the shock, but I'll keep my eye on her. Any more questions?”

Edward took a few deep breaths. Everything would be okay. Nuria and Kirlia were safe, as were he and the rest of the Pokemon. Something didn't make sense, however.

“Pokedexes are meant to scan the area for hostile Pokemon. What happened to that?”

Celebi replied without skipping a beat:

“Kirlia had been sensing the area using her psychic energy to scan all living life-forms. This psychic field distorts the space around her, thus distorting the electromagnetic field around each Pokedex which detects the hormones of aggressive Pokemon. As the Houndoom are genetically immune to psychic wavelengths, Kirlia could not sense them, so the Houndoom were a shock to everyone, most of all Kirlia.”

Ah, you did remember that Houndoom are immune to Psychic-type moves. How did Celebi drive them off exactly, then?


Edward closed his eyes, trying to make sense of it all.

“And where were you?”

From behind its back Celebi produced a small pink puff-ball.

“Candy floss?”

Oh God, Celebi, never change.


Edward groaned, kneading his head as he sank to a crossed-leg position.

“How is she now? Physically?”

“She's okay, but when she wakes up she'll be dazed and will want to know what happened.”

Edward considered the possibilities. Taking her to a Pokemon Centre or hospital would be suspicious, and there's definitely be an investigation. They might want to keep her longer for treatment... and if the Pokemon mention what's happening? Edward quickly scanned his memory, then bit his lip in frustration. How did I forget to tell Nincada not to tell anyone what was going on? What if he mentions Regice to a nurse? If we stay here though, they'd come back and-

I give you credit for having Edward think through his actions. A lot of times characters in such situations will just make rash decisions.


“No, they won't. As long as they feel my presence, they won't come near us.”

Is that why they left?


Edward sighed, looking around for any place where they could shelter for a while.

Suddenly he was sitting in a small, cosy plain. The light was dim, the little light getting through the canopy having little to illuminate but the moss-strewn floor.

“We're not too far from where we were, don't worry,” Celebi muttered, still examining the space between Nuria and Ralts, each of whom had also appeared in the area. After a few seconds, the Legendary looked at Edward.

Did Celebi teleport them?


“Okay, recall Kirlia now.” As Edward raised Kirlia's Pokeball, Edward could have sworn he saw Kirlia begin to try and stand.

“So,” Celebi said, its previous enthusiasm returning, “what do you want to do now?”

Edward lay back on the moss, wondering what he was even supposed to be thinking at a time like this. I could have died. But I didn't. But Nuria got hurt. But now she's okay. He tucked his hands under his head. There's something wrong with me, he decided finally.

I wonder what that something might be.


Edward turned to his side, and as he did he rolled onto the book of Legendaries. Picking it up and flicking it open, he held it up for Celebi to see.

“You mind going through this with me and telling me who's real and who isn't?”

Celebi bit its lip, as though considering all the other fun stuff it could go and have throughout the entirety of the past.

“Okay,” it said reluctantly, and hovered over to lie on the moss next to Edward. Looking over to Nuria again, he passed the book to Celebi (who had the mass of candy floss held between its front teeth) and crawled the short distance over to her.

What were you trying to get? Edward wondered, gently sliding the bag off her arm. With only a few of the contents spilling out, the bag came off relatively easily.

Edward's heart leapt momentarily as he realised the gun in Nuria's hand was now facing him square in the chest.

Well that was quite startling. It doesn't surprise me that Nuria would have been going for the gun, though. She's the type who would shoot her way out if she had no other choice.


In a flash he rolled out of the way, and, after catching his breath slightly and rubbing his protesting ribs, gently uncurled Nuria's fingers from around the weapon, letting it fall. Arms shaking, he awkwardly picked it up, making sure his fingers were completely clear of the trigger.

Seeing it clearly in the light for the first time, Edward pondered over where she could have got it. A shop? No, probably not. Her Mum? Well... could she have been the sort? Edward bit his lip as he thought of Nuria's affectionate, kindly Mum, and wondered exactly how far she might have gone in the name of self defence.

I think I'd guess the "Nuria's mom" explanation, myself.


Gingerly replacing the weapon, face down, in her rucksack, Edward exhaled and crawled back over to Celebi, leaving the bag halfway between them.

“So, found any fakes?” Edward asked as he rolled onto his back next to the deity. Celebi nodded and smiled, flipping back to the glossary page.

“Yep, though I'm not sure about some.”

“Not sure?” Edward asked, intending for there to be incredulity in his voice, but instead was just monotonous.

“Poor memory. Most I know for certain do exist, so why don't we just go through them?”

“Sure,” Edward said, his interest starting to build slightly. Despite knowing he'd have to battle whatever really existed in this book, he could never pass up on learning more about the Legendary Pokemon he'd loved to research as he grew up.

“So,” Celebi said, nestling into the moss to make itself comfortable, carefully balancing the ball of candy floss on its little belly, “where do you want to start?”



Chapter 21 - Legends (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=16766430#postcount=147)

Nice ending.

Overall, a good chapter. My main criticism is that the description is a little lacking, leading to parts that either come out of nowhere (the arrival of the first Houndoom) or feel a bit confusing (the teleportation part.) That's easy to fix, however.

The Great Butler
3rd February 2014, 8:25 AM
Well, here's another chapter right off the bat to compensate for the wait! I hope you all like this one: it's been building in my head for a while and I thought now was the best time to give it my all!

Chapter 21
Legends

Edward locked onto the first name he saw.

“Lavan.”

“Nope – doesn't exist, I don't think. From what I recall, the people of Johto came up with it inadvertently after changing the legend of Heatran.”

Oh, that's clever. I like it.


“So Heatran exists, then?”

“Yes – it spends most of its time living in volcanically active areas, though Sinnoh appears to be its most regular residence.”

Nice way to incorporate Heatran's appearance in Unova.


“Okay.” Edward felt himself getting excited: I'm the only human alive to know this! This is so cool!

Is he really the only living person to know that? I find it a little hard to believe.


“Now,” Edward said, trying to keep his composure professional, “how about... Ho-oh?”

Celebi scrunched its eye-lids shut in concentration, passed the book to Edward and put its little paws over its face. Edward held the book above both of them and began scanning the index.

“Y...eeees. I think. No, wait, yeah I'm sure. It exists, and like to live around.... um...”

I think Celebi is messing with Edward here. Considering that Ho-oh is a Johto legend, I would think that he would know about it.


“Ecruteak City?” Edward asked, having eagerly flipped onto Ho-oh's section in the book. It's artwork at the top of the page was poorly defined but brimming with bright tones of gold, red and orange, giving Edward an indication of where its plumage lay.

“Yes! That's it! And another one... I think you call it Lugio?”

“Lugia,” Edward said, looking at the page opposite Ho-oh's. The two nicely juxtaposed each other: whereas the Ho-oh section was light, bright and inscribed with golden text, the Lugia section was darker, yet comfortingly so with quiet shades of grey and silver brimming the borders, the text itself in reflective silver.

I really believe Celebi is messing with him. I think there is something Celebi is withholding from him.


“Man, you're good. Lugia prefers life under water, so that may be pretty difficult to track. Ho-oh also like high places in general, to that at least narrows down the areas we might find it.”

“Hey, why does Lugia live underwater when it's a psychic and flying-type?”

Celebi snorted, removing its paws from its face and looking over up to the book.

“Types are moot when it comes to Ancients. Technically, the concept of types is just a human classification system, and supposed weaknesses and strengths are just shared attributes. It would be more accurate to label Ancients as 'Every single type'.”

That's clever, I like it.


“So, they're super weak to rock-type Pokemon?” Edward replied sarcastically, remembering the small bit of trivia from school. Celebi giggled slightly.

Aha, nice Celebi.


“Good one. No, they're not really 'weak' to anything – even Ancients find it hard to do serious damage to one another.”

That makes sense.


Edwards excitement froze when he momentarily considered the implications of the strength of the killer, but this melted back into enthusiasm as he flipped the page.

Missing an apostrophe in "Edward's."


“Ooh – what about Trenta – the one who grew all the world's plants?” The page was covered with dense variations of green at the top and spider-web thin, intricate pathways of brown roots at the bottom, the text changing from brown to green to remain visible. Edward recalled the figure shown as an image he used in a school presentation when he was younger: a Pokemon looking like a great bush, a ring of roots and vines pushing out of the ground in a circle around it, waving them impressively as the great bush-creature bared a jaw of thorns and bristles, there being no eyes or other recognisable figures.

“No,” Celebi said bluntly, its eyes scanning the page intently. “From what I remember, that one was made up when a group of villagers saw a... I can't remember its name, but it looks like a tree. It's been a while since I've seen one.”

Trevenant?

I like how creative you're being with these false myth Pokemon. Taking existing Pokemon with distinctive looks and modifying them into mythological figures is very in line with how a myth can get started in real life.


“Oh,” Edward said, frowning slightly. He raised his finger to point to the next page, but Celebi shook its head.

“Sandarvarkin isn't real either. I've no clue what inspired this, except for old hikers warning people to stay on guard in deserts.”

Edward turned the page, onto where Nuria had found Darkrai, with Cresselia on the adjacent page. Edward noted the new/full moon theme, but couldn't help agree with Nuria when she had said Darkrai looked 'iffy'. And that is without even factoring in the nightmare aspect! How could anything natural look so evil?

“Yep! Definitely, I've known them for ages. Oddly enough most of the stories are true here: Darkrai feeds off the fear of sleeping people, and Cresselia feeds off their security.”

Edward and Nuria's thoughts on Darkrai are believable. I can see people having doubts about Darkrai's validity based on its appearance.


“Hang on, if they're Legendaries, why do they need to feed?” Celebi shrugged.

“Why do I like sweets? Cos they taste nice! You're right, we don't technically need to eat, but it's still a pleasure to eat and drink.”

I kind of thought Celebi was flaking out on Edward again, but he actually did answer the question, which was a pleasant surprise.


“So, is there a specific place they like to stay?” Edward mentally prayed Darkrai lived far, far away and Cresselia was just around the corner.

“No,” Celebi said, sounding frustrated. “Darkrai darts around from place to place, whereas Cresselia has a few places she likes more than others. But with this killer on the loose, I suppose they could move anywhere.”

Wouldn't it be the opposite? Darkrai is only found in one place so far in the games (Newmoon Island) while Cresselia is a roaming Pokemon that starts on Fullmoon Island in Sinnoh, then also appears in Unova.


“Wait, 'she?” Edward turned his head to Celebi. “I thought you were all genderless.”

Celebi's paws flew to its cheeks and tried to muffle its laughter; Edward was given the impression of a young teenager giggling at something rude. It quickly composed itself, however, and explained with a wry smile.

“Ancients are just the last of their kind, remember? Of course they have genders – most just forget them after a while. Cresselia clearly remembers being a female, and some, like Heatran, constantly forget which one it is.”

I suppose that's as good an explanation as any as to why some Legendaries have genders and others don't.


Edward began to nod, then registered all of what the Legendary had casually just revealed.

“Wait, what?!” Edward remarked incredulously, shifting a little away from the little Legendary to look at it fully. Celebi looked confused.

“What? Oh, haven't I told you yet? Sorry, I thought that would have been one of the first things I would have mentioned! Yeah, Ancients – well, at least the small-scale ones – haven't been around forever. Planets form in their own course, then life, and when a world gains sufficient variety of sentient life Arceus gives power to a select few Pokemon, who have their power increased to the point of immortality. As a result they outlive their fellow species, surviving so long they eventually forget all about this.”

Edward couldn't fully comprehend what he was hearing. This is massive! Why does it speak of this as though it's common knowledge?

Because to Celebi, it is common knowledge, I'd say.


“Okay... could you explain further?” Edward said as he ran these breath-taking new facts over in him mind again.

“How so?” Celebi asked innocently, nibbling some more at the diminished candy floss.

“Well... why does Arceus do this? And didn't it go to sleep after making the universe, so how would it even do this?”

“Ah, missed out another bit. You see, whereas it's Arceus who actually deals with mortal stuff, God Himself is the one who fell asleep. Remember, God created an entire universe: even in a comatose state He is able to observe and act in the universe, but in doing so has to thoroughly condense His power into a single being to effectively bear some of His consciousness.” The book jutted out of Edwards hands slightly higher into the air, the pages fluttering wildly until settling on a large, two-page exposition entitles 'Arceus'. The borders consisted of pure, white clouds, allowing only a little golden light through. In the centre, across both pages, stood Arceus looking upward, the shining sun behind it.

"Entitled," not "entitles."

And this is a great explanation for why Arceus is not necessarily the highest being in the universe that still keeps its story from the games intact.


“This is the vessel it uses to observe and alter the world, containing a fraction of God's true power. You call this being Arceus.

“Regarding the need for Ancients: it's just the compartmentalisation of jobs; give each planet its own balancing system so He needn't bother look over them.”

Celebi paused. Edward found himself out of breath. This literally disproves every religion and everything we knew about the universe. Still, Edward didn't feel as...insignificant as he expected. I know the beginning of the universe... shouldn't I feel... humbled or something?

Steadying his breaths, he explored the feeling rising in his chest. Fear? No, not quite. Excitement? he realised, and suddenly he was grinning from ear to ear, barely able to control himself. This is so awesome! It's true – these bed-time stories are really true.

I'm not sure, but doesn't the fact that there are bedtime stories about what Celebi told him contradict his earlier claim that "every religion and everything we knew about the universe" is disproven? I think I would change that line to say "this disproves every scientific theory about the universe! Those bedtime stories are really true!"


Edward looked around, the world bathed in a new, magical light he hadn't seen since he'd left for his adventure, before learning about the killer, the Legendaries and the planet's imminent destruction. Knowing that there was something out there... a God that could help... wait a second...

“Where's Arceus, then?” Edward asked, the feeling ebbing slightly. “If it has all this power and the ability to meddle with the lives a planet's population, where is it?”

“The universe is a big place: trust me, I've seen it. And God made it so Arceus has to obey the laws of the universe in a more... linear fashion. Although its power greatly surpasses even mine, it cannot time-travel as I can, restricting it to regular movement. And terrible things happen all over the place, not to mention Arceus follows the philosophy of 'everything runs its course'.”

“So... would it help?” he asked, leaning towards Celebi. The Legendary shrugged.

“No clue. I've asked it many times regarding the killer – it never gave a straight answer.”

I wonder if it knows even though it's not helping. I kind of expect Arceus to have a role later on. Who knows, maybe Arceus even is the killer... I could see it happening.


“Okay,” Edward said, slightly deflated but still relatively earnest, “but how do Legendaries become Legendaries? Is it an over-night thing, or...?”

Celebi turned to Edward, a smile playing on its lips.

“You're really getting into this aren't you?”

“I love Legendary Pokemon stories – people in Hoenn are brought up on quite a few, and they've always been an interest for me.” Edward briefly recalled the years before a computer screen, feeling frustrated there was no exact proof of most of the legends.

This could make for an interesting piece of Edward's backstory to continue pursuing, his interest in Legendaries and their myths.


“Hmm.” Celebi's smile began to widen. “Well, in that case, I guess I just have to show you.”

Before Edward could respond, Celebi planted its little paw on his forehead, and suddenly the world was left far behind.

The sky was infused with a chaotic mix of ash and cloud, lit with dark shades of orange and brown. Below, a sea shore stretched far into the distance, as far as Edward could see. The land itself sloped down from the highest visible point: a colossal, smoking volcano, impossibly tall and ludicrously thick. From here the land gradually, seamlessly, dissolved into sand, then shot steeply below the waves: a submerged cliff-face. Thin and thick rivers of lava oozed down the volcano's side, solidifying rapidly as they met the water, throwing a dense cloud of steam into the air. But weirder than this landscape were the creatures inhabiting it.

Great description, but you could probably cut "thin and thick" for the sake of being more streamlined.


Their skin less violently red, their size vastly inferior, their features less sharp, Edward at first couldn't recognise the creatures scurrying about the land. A sense of recognition rang in his head, but it wasn't until he saw one, lying in a lava stream, did he realise for certain.

Groudons. Hundreds of them. Confusion quickly turned into ecstasy as he looked down upon the civilisation of the Legendaries. Looking closer, he saw smaller creatures, not dissimilar to their giant counterparts, densely surrounding the occasional Groudon. Although their features were far smoother and they scuttled about on four legs, there was no denying the link between them. No way...

“So, are they-”

“Yes,” Celebi intoned, obviously out to impress, “they are the stage of minor evolution before the Groudon stage.”

Oh wow, I love this. Very vivid and imaginative.


“Minor?” Edward asked off-handedly, too busy marvelling over the sight to focus on the answer.

“As in the quick-form of what humans call evolution, as opposed to the major, much longer form. And, if you like that, try focusing on the water...”

Edward made to turn, but realised with a start he had no body to turn with. In fact, he realised how his entire field of vision stretched completely around him, yet not disorientating him. Celebi, whom Edward noticed was also not there, appeared to latch onto his surprise.

“Oh yeah, I constructed a consciousness-sphere to take us back – it's be much simpler than constructing a time gate to constantly transport your respiratory requirements.”

Edward subconsciously attempted to inhale, finding it completely impossible. Now it was starting to get disorientating.

I can't blame him, it sounds disorienting.


“Just focus on the water and I promise, you'll forget about it,” Celebi's voice promised excitedly. Shifting his attention to the tumultuous ocean, Edward saw what it had meant.

Although he had never seen a real one to compare it with, Edward could appreciate merely by artist interpretations how these Kyogres differed from the one in his time. Their fins were smaller proportional to their bodies, which were thinner and less hydrodynamic, and the ribbons he had seen in many a book upon the end of end of Kyogre's tail were merely thick lumps of flesh. They too were surrounded by smaller creatures, but, with great surprise, Edward found himself recognising these all too well. They were bigger than he'd seen at the aquariums, and their fins were far less elegant, but Edward knew for a fact they had to be Finneon.

“How?” was all the dumbfounded Edward could say. Sure, he'd noted, along a few in his classmates, the similarities between the depiction of Kyogre and Finneon, but he'd never actually thought...

Celebi's voice seemed delighted.

“I knew you'd love that! Over time, the species you see here today evolved – major, long-term evolution, mind you – to your current Finneon and Lumineon: a simple by-product of natural selection.”

Huh, interesting that you'd bring in natural selection and evolution. I like it, and it's a good theory.


Edward couldn't believe it. How could an entire species of Legendaries.... well, Legendary templates, not thrive?

“You'll see,” Celebi said mischievously, and the world around Edward was rammed into high gear. The clouds, the sea, the forests of the land – they all shifted rapidly, rising and receding, encroaching and retreating. The creatures went faster as well, but Edward somehow found himself able to latch onto patterns in their movement, something Edward immediately suspected Celebi to be behind.

As the Groudon and their young would die, other Groudon would drag them into the ocean, where the Kyogre and their young would feast on the remains. Similarly, Edward noticed when the occasional Kyogre and Finneon would die and rise to the surface, the waves pushing them to the sea shore, where the Groudon civilisation would prey upon them. A symbiotic relationship, Edward realised, recalling the phrase from his lessons in forest life.

That is very, very clever. I never would have imagined such a symbiotic relationship between them.


He also noticed that, despite the lava solidifying on the ocean, the land mass never increased: as rock built up, various Kyogre would come along to erode the wall, keeping the underwater cliff-face completely smooth. But why would they... of course: to keep the colonies close enough to co-exist! Otherwise the land would expand so much the Kyogre would be too far away! Celebi grunted in appreciation, confirming Edward to be right. Edward knew that if he could still feel his body, he'd be grinning wildly.

He could also make out longer overall changes: how the sky appeared to clear, the sky becoming blue-er and the clouds turning whiter. And how gradually, almost imperceptibly, the number of Groudon and Kyogre seemed to decline.

Looking closely, he noticed that, in the case of the Groudon, they merely began dying quicker and in greater frequency. The Kyogre were dying off quicker as well, but where a Kyogre died a smaller one would take its place, then a smaller, then a smaller. Whereas the Groudon were merely dying, The Kyogre were... evolving.

I assume this is what ultimately led to the Groudon VS. Kyogre clash?


And, at the point where the sky was a perfect shade of blue, the heavens split in two.

Above the land the sun's intensity slowly increased, baking the land beneath and causing the local plant-life to shrivel and die.. Above the water, increasingly thick and dark clouds began to form, the rain becoming more frequent until there was only permanent deluge. Edward remembered the type and intensity of the rain well, it having caused global destruction only recently in his time-line.

Then Edward noticed a constant – a single Kyogre and Groudon in their respective zones, growing, living, surviving longer than the rest of its species. And suddenly, as the last of the imperfect Groudons died off and the newly-formed Lumineons had left for better waters, there were only two.

Oh wait, I get it now. This is a good explanation.


With no fellows to keep them rooted, Groudon and Kyogre moved apart: Groudon across the vast land regions of the super-continent upon which it lived, Kyogre through in impossibly deep and cavernous oceans. Somehow Edward found he was able to focus on both, despite their great distance from one another, but he was to captivated by what he was watching to bring attention to this.

It became apparent over time that the newly-formed Legendaries discovered their powers over their respective elements: bit by bit Kyogre found it could swallow up the land to expand its territory to its will, whereas Groudon could lift region-sized land masses from the ocean floor. In each instance Edward saw how life immediately sunk into the new areas – alien looking Pokemon who he knew to be ancestors to his familiar modern-day ones colonising their new living spaces as they moved throughout the world.

With the inevitable momentum of a train, over what could have been centuries, the two Legendaries inched closer and closer to one another.

Time returned to its normal pace, the waves lapping slowly over sun-dried earth, the rain a deafening furor above the ocean but only the sound of wind blowing through the dying, heat-exhausted plant life on the land.

Each of the Legends looked confused, the sight of the other weather condition stumping it. Edward noticed how there was no sense of familiarity between the two: any instinct of symbiosis with the other creature had obviously evaporated long ago.

Curiously, Groudon lifted a small area of land for it to walk across into the deluge, which was immediately swamped by a tidal wave. The red titan snapped its gaze to its blue counterpart, recognising it as its defier. The world stood still for the shortest of moments, then all hell broke loose.

Familiar territory here, but you tell the story well.


Suddenly he was back on the forest floor, gasping for breath as his body began to sweat with the pure adrenaline rush. That was so awesome! was all he could think for a while.

“Take me back! I need to see the rest!” Edward half-shouted a minute later at the Legendary looking at him contentedly. Reluctantly, Celebi shook its head.

“Sorry, but your mind's a delicate thing. Looking for too long at what happened... I've got to say, it's one of my favourite moments in Earth's history, but the power each of them gave off nearly destroyed the thing. The mere radiation they gave off could fry your brain, and not even I could prevent the shock to your system.”

Edward expected to feel frustrated, but could only lean back and reminisce, not wanting to forget a single detail. He closed his eyes, replaying the events in his mind over and over, finding himself laughing with awe at some of the more impressive feats or interesting details. They were gods! Edward thought appreciatively.

And, muttered the darkest crevice of his mind, you have to beat the thing which killed them.

I can only imagine what the steepness of that mission does to Edward. It's certainly intimidating to me.

And I'm caught up. Your imagination is really something. You've taken stories that are part familiar and part new and spun them in a new, imaginative way. You show great creativity in filling in the gaps, too; my favorite parts were your imagination with nonexistent Legendaries and your creativity in telling the story of Groudon and Kyogre.