This is a sequel to The Other King.
Once Upon A Heavy Crown
Chapter One: Heavy Is The Head That Wears The Crown
Faith in the holy church of Arceus had been restored. But for how long, only time will tell. Since the many massacres and wars, some began to doubt that Arceus or any of legendary pokemon even existed. An ancient passage of Arceus' Bible stated that true pokemon trainers will be protected by the appointed legendary pokemon.
Fate had been kind to Hoenn's cherished king. Ash wanted to be the greatest king that ever lived. He wanted Arceus to bless him and protect him and all the pokemon in the world. He didn't always agree with his family's methods, but he vowed to make them proud. He waved his sword in the air like a flag in the wing; the sword that chose his great-grandfather to be the hero of time.
His wife was the queen of Hoenn and he was next in line to the throne of Kanto. He had a huge following, but it wasn't enough for Ash: he knew he could do better. He wanted to bring all the Pokemon states together. There was only one world, and he had to make it right.
Many had considered Ash's triumphs and rise to fame as a symbol of world peace. This troubled Ash and made him wonder what it meant to have world peace. What was world peace? Would it ever exist or does it exist. When he was a boy his father brought him and his brother to his father's chambers and promised them that they would be great kings would would bring peace to all who knew them.
For many years, Ash believed his father's prophecy until he was taken away by his childhood sweetheart and learned to love and then marry May. It all seemed too perfect. His father appeared to have had all the right contacts, the right supporters and at the right time.
His father was now dead and so was his brother. But every cloud had a silver lining. He was back in contact with his half-brother and step-sister, Ritchie and Mollie Hale. His father wanted to pretend that the Hale family never existed.
"This was my dream," Ash roared to the crowd. "I want to be the best king ever and give my son, Garnet a good example."
A wise black priest named Brock stood out from amongst the roaring crowd. "You already are the greatest king of all time."
"Well I know I can still do better," Ash responded. His best friend, Pikachu jumped to his shoulders. "There is now enough food to feed the world."
"Then why are starving families in the streets?" A loud voice called from the corner of the room. A tall young lad with a red cape and light brown hair. He had his mother's eyes and his father's grin. Prince Garnet, named after the birthstone of the first month.
His childhood friend, Thyst was behind much could be said about Thyst. She was the youngest daughter of the wealthy Ogust Corandum and his very young wife, Ribin. Ribin was only seven when she gave birth to Shyst's elder sister. Her name had derived from the purple stone amethyst, her birthstone. Apart from her milk like skin, she was covered in shades of purple; long mauve plats, and a fluffy fuchsia dress.
Thyst gasped as she remained behind him. "...Garnet!"
"Why are so many people still alone when there's so many of us?" Garnet asked. His fists were clenched as he stomped the ground. He marched to his father whilst Thyst followed him. Garnet pointed at the sword and yelled. "Why are swords called peacekeepers when they're aimed to kill? Why have my late uncles received no justice?"
"But they have," Brock told Garnet. "Your Uncle Max was murdered by an evil king. The same one that killed your Uncle Kamon. World peace came after the evil king's death."
"We don't have world peace," Garnet snapped. "We're nowhere near world peace."
"Garnet, my boy," Ash looked down on his son and smiled. "There is so much I want to tell you. You'll understand soon enough."
"Understand what?" Garnet roared. "I've been outside this kingdom and all I see is greedy counsellors being mean to the poor."
Brock chuckled as he bowed to Ash. "Your Majesty, your son is very much like you. A very determined man. A lot louder than your daughter, Zelda."
"You promised my friend, Sarada Uchiha that would find her sister."
"We've looked everywhere," Ash informed his son with regret. He frowned. "I'm afraid she's gone..."
"How do you know she's gone?" Garnet yelled.
"Ruco ran away when she was seven," Ash explained. "Ruco had no pokemon with her and she was alone. There's no way she can be alive now. I'm sorry, Garnet."
King Cilan never expected to see Itachi Uchiha in a white cassock and a red cap. The elegant patterns on his clothes blended with his pale skin and made his red eyes and black hair unmissable. A helix fossil dangled from his neck and rubbed against the soft fabric of his clothes. It was the dress code for a cardinal for the pokemon church. How one of the strongest ninjas became one of the most powerful pokemon bishops was a mystery to Cilan.
Digimon, card games and any sports that were not including pokemon were considered acts of heresy. Digimon tamers, beybladers and duelists were burned, beheaded and even hung, drawn and quartered for not worshipping Arceus or other pokemon. Ninjas were also killed in what was considered by the late King Lance as an ethnic cleansing. King Lance and his uncle were sworn enemies and Lance believed that Giovanni had hired ninjas to bring the destruction of his kingdom.
"When I first met you, you were plotting to get your brother on the throne," Cilan whispered to Itachi, not wanting to cause his wife any-more stress. "Now all of a sudden you want to know us."
When he saw Itachi walking into the church that was once his home, Cilan chased him in feeling compelled to talk. He had seen him many times since they first met many years ago, but had yet to see eye to eye. He hated Itachi for eating a pokemon, but other than that, the two didn't really know each other - they were from completely different worlds.
"I've been assigned to arrange the funeral," Itachi responded with a light smile on his face. A killer smiling so sincerely and wearing holy clothing was an ironic sight to see.
"Here I am mistaking you for somebody who cared." Cilan stormed off and sat besides the throne. Itachi shook his head, then followed the red carpet to the throne. Iris was crying and she hid her face under her wet scarf. "My love... it's Cardinal Itachi. He's come to discuss the funeral."
"I am truly sorry for what happened to Drayden," Itachi said with his hands upon his heart as strands of hair fell in front of his eyes. He sighed. "Poor man. What a tragic loss."
Cilan saw Princess Dawn's twins in the crowd of Drayden's closest friends. Dale's hair went down to his back, just like his mother. Whilst Pearl's hair was much more brighter and shorter their eyes had the same sapphire sparkle that Princess Dawn did. The last time he saw them, Dawn was carrying them either side of her arms. Pearl had grown up to be a strong confident potions seller with her twin brother by her side. Her brother was the quiet one but looked a lot like his mother. Dale held onto his sister's hips and buried his head in his hair.
Cilan went over to the twins and hugged them. "Don't cry," he said patting both of their backs as he walked in between them. "He's in a better place now. Your mother is proud of you both. By the way how is she?"
"Our mother died four years ago..." Pearl squealed as she burst to tears.
"Huh?" Cilan gasped. "She's dead?"
Dearl lowered his head in shame. "Our mother wanted a potion that would make her beautiful forever. She died after one sip..."
"Oh Dale, please don't cry!" Pearl requested, fighting back her own tears. "It worked wonders on our Grandma!"
"I'm so sorry!" Cilan was intimidated by Itachi's cold stare. "What? I had no idea that Dawn was dead."
"That's life I'm afraid," Itachi announced. "People come and go all the time."
Cilan folded his arms as he walked over to Itachi and gazed at the fossil around his neck. "I do wonder how you ended up being then man you are today."
"We'll discuss that in private," the man promised him.
"Drayden will have the funeral he deserves," Iris told the court. "I want everyone to sing his favourite songs and pray his favourite prayers."
"I think Drayden would approve of that," Itachi said as he wrote Iris' words in his notepad. "What are his favourite songs and prayers?"
"He loved the traditional music from Johto like the songs the kimono girls from Ecruteak sing," Iris announced. "He found comfort in the old hymns and prayers."
"Mother," Pagan, Iris' eldest son cried out from the crowd. He was the king of Johto and very much resembled his father with his red hair. Pagan had always loved his family, but would always hate Cilan for slowly replacing his father. Iris had waited until she passed Johto's throne over to her eldest son after Lance's execution, but after a while, she believed it was time for Pagan to have his crown. Iris never blessed Pagan's marriage to Clair, but it went ahead anyway. If they were happy, Iris had no problems with it.
"Why is a ninja conducting the funeral?" Pagan asked. "Wasn't he the one who ate a pokemon?"
Queen Iris nodded. "It is true, but the past is in the past. Drayden believed in forgiveness and always saw the light in people. We should do the same."
"You must be right," Pagan said. "I find it hard to appreciate them. All ninjas are men of darkness. That's why my father wanted them wiped out."
"They're not all bad," Cilan interrupted.
"I'm surprised you're still here," Pagan hissed as he reached for his head.
"Brother," Salem, Pagan's younger brother said pulling onto his cape, "This is not the time or place. We can't have a civil war."
"Drayden hated his guts," Pagan barked. "I swear it Cilan, if you step one foot in Johto... I will have you killed."
Iris stood up. "We shall all go outside and clear our minds in the garden." She stormed out and the rest of the crowd followed her. It left only Cilan and Itachi in the room. Cilan placed himself on the throne before Itachi had a chance to inspect it. Cilan slapped himself across the cheek and felt defeated. He couldn't have children of his own, but Lilia and Salem were about to accept to him as their step-father, but Pagan was too much like his father to appreciate him.
Cilan's finger caught his attention. The scar from where Pagan's bagon bite him many years ago.
"I guess you would like me to answer your question," Itachi said.
Cilan leaned forward. "There's nothing stopping you."
"I'm proud of my cousin," Itachi confessed out of the blue. "She's done well to maintain her power after everything she's been through with the family and you. And on top of that you kept me, my brother and Sakura alive. For that, I cannot thank you enough."
"I didn't keep you alive," Cilan admitted. "It was the bravery of your friends that kept you alive. They used their connections to The Ketchum Clan to their full advantage."
Itachi froze. "Come to think of it, we're not so different... you and I!"
Cilan gasped as his legs began to shake. Itachi Uchiha was an unpredictable man. "In what way?"
"We both go to extreme measures for the ones we love."
"Who do you love?" Cilan had always assumed that the man lacked capacity to love anyone.
Itachi opened his arms and spread his fingers. "My family of course."
"You committed a terrible crime and you let your family suffer for it. How is that love?" Cilan roared getting louder as he spoke.
"We were a big clan and we were all hungry."
"There plenty of fruit in the forests but you killed and ate a dragonite," Cilan reminded Itachi as he shook his head in disgrace. "You must have known how much dragon pokemon mean to the kingdom. You let your entire clan fall."
"Sometimes sacrifices must be made," Itachi announced as he closed his eyes. "But I couldn't let my brother's marriage collapse. Sakura Haruno is the only girl who can fulfil all of Sasuke's wishes."
"Are you saying that you planned all this the entire time?"
"High risk: big reward. Sakura had to get pregnant. The clan needed restoring to its former glory."
"You slept with your brother's wife?" Cilan lashed out, jumping from his throne. He got out his sword and held it up to Itachi's neck. Itachi didn't flinch and ceased to move like a statue. "How could you do such a thing? Sakura and Sasuke were a sickening match!"
"Barbaric as it sounds, my plan worked. Giovanni Ketchum bailed me out on the condition that I became a pokemon priest. I worked my way up to the position of cardinal. When I was released from prison my plan worked even better than I thought."
"Hoenn's law states that a child cannot be born out of wedlock," Cilan realised as he opened his mouth. All of a sudden, Itachi's actions had made sence. After deep though, Cilan knew that it was still just as ridiculous as it sounded. "You must have known that they were going to Hoenn all this time. You had that dragon feast on purpose to make Lance angry. You wanted the weak links in your clan removed. I don't know why you couldn't have just let Sasuke have his divorce and you marry Sakura instead!
"I could have done whatever I wanted to her body," Itachi replied. "But her heart will always belong to my brother. When I was studying to become a priest, I received a letter from Kakashi stating that Sakura and Sasuke were still married and that my daughter, Ruco had been born. After I was ordained, I visited my brother's household. I was pleased to see my daughter running around the house. I was even happier when I saw another baby girl with Sasuke's eyes."
"So Sarada is definitely Sasuke's daughter."
"Who else knows of this?"
"Only Kakashi and Sakura."
"Why are you telling me this?" Cilan asked curiously.
"Because you always said you were good at keeping secrets."
"Then do you know where Ruco Uchiha is?" Cilan asked.
"Ruco has chosen her own path," Itachi responded. "She is determined to make her father, Sasuke proud."
"But you're her father."
"Sasuke was the one who raised her, loved her and taught her the skills to survive. He was her guardian. You see Cilan, impregnating a woman alone is not enough to be a father. You have to love your wife's children with all of your heart, body and soul. Those were Mew's very own words."