Where Even Kilroy Hasn’t Been
A fanfic by Pink Parka Girl
Author’s Notes: Or should it be authoress’ notes? I don’t know. Anyway........there are hundreds of "kid gets sucked into the Pokémon world" fics. They're overall rife with cliche and all bear a major one I've never seen anybody break (though that doesn't mean people haven't done it before) - it's always a modern kid who knows what Pokémon is. What I attempt to do here is reject the big cliche – and write about an adult, a seaman in Pearl Harbor that fateful day, who gets flung into the world of Pokémon. He's never heard of pokémon, or even video games. Not only is this new world filled with bizarre animals, but the technology outshines that of the 1941 of our Earth (though it's also 1941 in the Pokémon world). Can he adapt? Will he adapt? What awaits Lester?
All pains have been taken to insure things are historically accurate. The physical description of Captain Bennion, and the description of the attack on the West Virginia, are accurate to the best of my research, and smaller historical details are also authentic as far as I can verify them. If you spot something anachoristic, please let me know so I can get rid of it (I think the usage of the term “flying saucer” may be an anachorism - the term gained popularity in 1947, but I can't find any date reflecting when the term first appeared). If the writing style seems dated, that’s also on purpose. I was really trying to capture the feeling of those tales in the pulp magazines of the time, of their incredible sci-fi adventures of discovery. I hope I have succeeded in capturing a “dated sci-fi” feel so far, and I’ve taken great pain to not allow any modern slang to slip through into my writing. If you catch any, let me know so I can get rid of it.
About pokécapsules – the reason for that, rather than pokeballs, is the persistant rumor that in the 1970’s, Tajiri created the very first incarnation of what would later become Pocket Monsters – Capsule Monsters – in the form of a manga (which no one has any screenshots or copies of, apparently, so I can’t be sure it actually ever existed) that did very poorly. I see the capsules as a primitive form of pokéball, the first attempts to make an artificial apricorn, which is why I’m using them here.
Also, please don't complain about me putting real world locations in the Pokémon world. Like it or not, it's a canon fact that real countries exist in the Poké-verse along with the fictional regions. I like the idea of there being a parallel WWII in the Pokéverse as well - I apologize if it's not to your tastes, however. ^_^;
Now, on with the story!
It would probably be best to start at the beginning.
It seems strange, to try to remember. Before the world went mad all around you, before you found yourself in far over your head, involved in happenings you cannot even fathom. To this day, I cannot explain fully what had happened that fateful day, and I’m not sure if what befell me was good or bad. My opinion has fluctuated on whether I had a definitive answer, but now...I cannot decide.
The day was in December. That much I can remember, although whether it was the Seventh, the same day the history I know says a very similar event occurred, I cannot say with any definitively. I’d been stationed off Pearl Harbor on the West Virginia, a large ship in a fleet of many vessels. Our commanding officer, Captain Mervyn Bennion, had stood on the deck early that morning, facing the the ship on the side of us, the Tennessee. Just behind us rested another ship, the Oklahoma; I gave the bow an offhand glance before turning to face my commander. He stood with his arms folded on the rail, his blue eyes slightly thoughtful. His face had been lined about his eyes and cheeks, with the slightest ghost of a mustache growing upon his upper lip and his slightly thinning hair swept back along the back of his head. He hadn’t seemed to notice my attention until I spoke.
“Captain Bennion? What is it?”
Bennion turned to face me, his eyes wearing the same heavy look as they had while he was peering into the sea. “The captain over on the Ward radioed me and the other ships. Japanese midget submarines, he said – five of them. The Ward took care of them, but I fear it’s just the beginning of a much larger attack. There’s long been rumors of a Japanese attack, Seaman Zobeck, and I fear those submarines were just the beginning. You and the others better man your stations.”
I nodded at my captain and returned to the radio room of the ship, to listen for any more reports. This was my station, my place. While I regretted having been asleep earlier, and thus missing the chance to hear the report about the midget subs with my own ears, I remember being ready to take down any other message that may be important for my captain. I heard the quick sound of bugle taps from out on the deck, and quick shouting to the other fellows to rouse out of bed and man their stations. Were the Japanese really planning a much larger strike than just five midget submarines? How would a barely awake bunch of ragtag fellows like ourselves defeat them?
As I remember thinking these questions to myself, I heard a sudden explosion, the force causing large waves that slammed the West Virginia and set her to wobbling fiercely back and forth. Curiosity got the better of me and I left the radio room; making my way carefully down the deck and towards the bow. The ship just before us, the Oklahoma, had been struck by torpedoes!
Backing quickly away from the bow, I let my eyes drift slightly over the rail, noticing three sleek shapes racing through the water, approaching the West Virginia.
“Torpedoes!” I had shouted, racing back to the radio room, frantically hitting buttons in an effort to reach the base on Pearl Harbor. Another explosion shook the very floor upon which I stood, and the radio equipment slid off their table, almost landing atop of me. I dropped the mouthpiece and slid to my stomach, trying to pull myself towards the door across the sharply slanting floor of the tipping ship. Shoving the door open with my shoulder, I slid out of the room and hesitantly stood upright, as the ship had somehow righted itself. Running to the deck, I instantly flung myself back upon the floor as bullets, fired from strafing zeroes, pelted down upon where I had been only a few moments before. Captain Bennion was shouting orders left and right, I remember, and I carefully slid my way towards him. Hearing a hiss, I looked up suddenly at the object swiftly making its way towards us.
Captain Bennion and I watched as the bomb slammed into the stern of the West Virginia, shrapnel flying everywhere, both from our ship and from the Tennessee, which had also been struck. Although I cannot describe it very well, I remember feeling then an intense pain, as if a hot poker had been driven through my stomach. Foggy with pain, I turned to my Captain, shocked to see that he, too, had been struck; ragged pieces of burning hot metal protruding from his abdomen. And yet he still stood!
“Captain...” I remember gasping, unable to build the strength to stand up, feeling my own blood run down my leg. “Captain...Bennion...sir...”
“Go, Zobeck!” the Captain ordered, his teeth gritted in a terrible grimace of pain. Flames were already consuming the back of the West Virginia; it would not be long before they engulfed the entire vessel.
“Get...get to the bridge, Zobeck. Someone will save you...I can’t leave the ship...have to help save her...save others...can’t let the Japs win...”
I remember forcing myself to stand up. I had to. My Captain had given me an order, and I couldn’t disobey if I had any means within my body to do otherwise. Stumbling and limping, I remember trying to make my way to the bridge, but I never made it.
The battleship was rapidly sinking; by now water was starting to slosh over the deck. If I was going to get off alive, I’d have to hurry. Ahead of me, I could see the bridge, devoid of any of the other fellows – they’d probably saved themselves already, or had gotten trapped deep in the belly of the ship. As the bridge extended out from the side of the ship, it would be easy to walk from the room out unto the dock that was so close, oh, so close. If only I could get through to the bridge and then unto the dock, I could get help.
I had to stop. Exhausted, I made my way to the rail and clung, trying to rest. The water rose over my ankles, I could not afford to pause for long. Not when the bridge was so close...
“I can’t...” I had gasped to myself, as I felt my limp hands suddenly losing their grip on the rails. “I.....”
Here I remember my body slipping into the water, sinking downwards faster than the ship. I do not know why I kept my eyes open in the stinging saltwater, but I did. I thought I saw a midget submarine, or a fish, or maybe a dolphin. The salt water ran in my wound and I remember the sting, the terrible sting.
I waited to die, to drown, to escape. I knew that there was no rescue for me.