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Thread: Never in the Wrong Time or Wrong Place (14A)

  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by HommeDor View Post
    the thing is why in a depression does he suddenly feel for the safety of his pokémon? that makes no sense in my opinion, i mean to prove himself to himself he might try battling....
    and corpish seemed way to good humored to let treeko get to him.. thats what i meant....
    Right now he's not trying to prove himself to anybody. He feels bad about making his pokemon fight for him while he doesn't/can't do anything himself, partly because he hates hypocrisy.

    Well, Treecko DID insult Corphish's jokes... that had to hurt. :P

    Quote Originally Posted by Apotheosis View Post
    The latest chapter was interesting, but I think a few of the sentences could have been a little bit clearer with a few more words.

    Also, your decision to not end with cliffhangers as often is a good one. If you have too much of one thing it can lose its affect. Balance is probably a better thing to achieve in writing.
    I'll be sure to add in a few clifhangers soon to achieve your balance thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by DarkPersian479 View Post
    Man, this is a disaster!

    No, not your fic I'm talking about Jeff's debut as a trainer. Nothing seems to be going right for him. I think he's right-being able to hear Pokemon speak isn't as lucky as you might think.

    Well, you had some very good interactions between Corphish and Treecko, and it was interesting to see that happy-go-lucky Corphish isn't so happy-go-lucky when Treecko mouths off at him. I need to say a word of caution based on the very end- even though the two rivals had to work together to escape Nidoking's grasp (what exactly were they accused of stealing, anyway?), don't make them get all chummy right away. It would be far more interesting to have that understanding and partnership build over time.

    You handled description of setting quite well, and your Pokemon description is improving as well.

    But Jeff is going seriously into depressed/emo mode, and unfortunately, it is quite ironic that his desire to keep his Pokemon from getting hurt ends up getting them hurt even worse. Just as I predicted last chapter, his head ain't in the game, and it is costing his Pokemon big-time.

    It's really the character interactions here that set your fic apart. The plot is sticking fairly true to form, but with Pokemon that bicker among each other, get into trouble because of it, and exchange insults, you're able to keep it interesting.
    Yeah, about the very end, I was kind of iffy about ending it like that. They definately aren;t going to be 'friends til the end' from the start, but I didn't know of a good way to end that chapter. Things will be better in the relationship aspect.
    We will find out what they were accused of stealing... soon.
    Its nice to hear I'm improving. Yeah, Jeff's situation will be prominent in the next two or so chapters...or will it? It will...or WILL it?
    I'm also glad to hear about the plot thing. But rest assured, things will change.

    P.S, DiamondPearl876, Thanks for the beta and helping to explain the question
    Last edited by Griff4815; 25th September 2007 at 12:46 AM.
    Claimed: Grovyle - November 10th, 2013
    Chapter 18 is up.

  2. #52
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    I really liked that chapter. The Nidoking bit reminded me of 'Wrong Turn' kind of. I like how you developed a rivalry between Treecko and Corphish. You have Jeff catch pokemon every so often, not one every chapter (kinda like I did for my first chapters). I really like this and I hope you'll write more soon!
    33

  3. #53
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    Whew... Jeff, Jeff, Jeff. His Pokemon try to provoke him into a fighting mode, but all he can do is worry about getting them hurt. *shakes head* I like how you include that; often, writers forget to talk about the misgivings that go along with being a trainer. I also love Corphish. Dunno why, I just never really like Corphish as a Pokemon... but he does have charm. ^^

  4. #54
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    hey, no one has answered me, what is the starred word?
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  5. #55
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    this fic,in one word,verygreatoneofthebest (its still one word:P)now i know theres 2 other treecko's evolution lovers, griff4815,and eylvorg!cant wait for chapter 8!
    the demon of the sea,Kyorge, the lurking of the shadows,Giratina, the lord of the pyro,Ho-oh, the leader of the earth,Groudon, the warrior of the grass,Sceptile, the death of life,Darkrai, the life of death,Shaymin, the eye of the storm,Lugia, the mind of the psychic,Deoxys, the brain of the steel,Heatran, the knight of the ice,Regigigas! Legend

  6. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by blaziken33 View Post
    I really liked that chapter. The Nidoking bit reminded me of 'Wrong Turn' kind of. I like how you developed a rivalry between Treecko and Corphish. You have Jeff catch pokemon every so often, not one every chapter (kinda like I did for my first chapters). I really like this and I hope you'll write more soon!
    Awesome thanks, I'm glad you liked it. Wrong turn...is that the movie where a girl gets her head chopped in half near the end? o_O'
    Yeah. I like the Treecko/Corphish rivalry, too. Its fun to write. I'll write more soon, dont worry.

    Quote Originally Posted by HommeDor View Post
    hey, no one has answered me, what is the starred word?
    The starred word was "s******" meaning giggle/laugh/chuckle. But the censor must have noticed that a slur was part of the word, so I changed it to "Snicker" instead. It had basically the same meaning.

    Quote Originally Posted by liveletlove_Mix View Post
    Whew... Jeff, Jeff, Jeff. His Pokemon try to provoke him into a fighting mode, but all he can do is worry about getting them hurt. *shakes head* I like how you include that; often, writers forget to talk about the misgivings that go along with being a trainer. I also love Corphish. Dunno why, I just never really like Corphish as a Pokemon... but he does have charm. ^^
    Thanks for noticing ^ ^. The way I see it, is Jeff feels responsible for his pokemon so of course he doesn;t want them to get hurt. He has a lot on his conscience, already.
    Also, I'm happy that you also like Corphish, he's very fun to play around with, writing wise.
    Claimed: Grovyle - November 10th, 2013
    Chapter 18 is up.

  7. #57
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    Were you expecting this? Of course you were...

    “<Argh, my eye!>” Nidoking yelled, holding his bleeding right eye and stumbling backwards, blinded. A slow trickle of scarlet blood leaked from the covered eye.
    I recently learned that eyes don't actually "bleed", they just excrete liquid. This isn't a real mistake because a "bloody eye" is a common term.


    Right as Corphish finished the joke he found himself being blindsided by Deyja. Corphish was knocked sideways and stopped at the base of a tree. He groaned and got to his many feet using his claw. Corphish raised his pincers in front of him.
    Haha... I love Corphish. Can't wait to see his personality after evolution.


    Jeff took out a knife and cut the rope binding Treecko and Corphish together. He then looked at the two and asked, “Are you guys cool?”
    "a" became "A"... I think that's right.


    “<Oh yeah?>”
    “<Yeah, ‘Tree Hugger’!>”
    You forgot to press enter twice here.
    love me, hate me ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬&

  8. #58
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    Cool Finally! Man I'm slow...

    Damn, i hate delaying reviews... but when you're in final year at uni you have little choice.

    Grammar check! There were more but i decided to leave some meat for the others to chew on...

    The lizard said as the two shuck hands…err, tails?
    The lizard said as the two shook hands…err, tails?

    Jeff claimed, becoming hardheaded and disagreable.
    Jeff claimed, becoming hard-headed and disagreeable.

    I couldn’t bare the thought of not having him with me at all times.
    I couldn’t bear the thought of not having him with me at all times.

    “<Nice to meet you,>” replied Corphish, shaking Jeff’s hand with his claw. “<My hobbies include being rejected by female Corphish, being alone on Saturday nights, and, like now, making jokes when I’m insecure,>” Corphish grinned, trying to lighten the mood.
    My kinda Corphish... reminds me a lot of me...

    He tackled Treecko and the two began to playfully fight eachother on the ground.
    He tackled Treecko and the two began to playfully fight each other on the ground.

    “I hope you’re prepared for the dreaded ‘Tickle attack’!” Jeff laughed, pinning Treecko in the mud.
    OH NOEZ!! NOT DA DREADED TICKLE ATTACK!!!

    “<Let’s give’em hell,>” Corphish battle cried to Treecko, who looked away in displeasure.
    That’s “<Let’s give ’em hell,>” Corphish battle cried to Treecko, who looked away in displeasure.

    Plus i think Treecko thinks he’s already there...

    Treecko stared down the small pokemon, causing it to back off, frightened He then
    Treecko stared down the small pokemon, causing it to back off, frightened. He then

    Treecko dozed off for a moment and then replied insincerely, “<I’ll talk to you some other time…>”

    “<Wow, you’ve managed to guess the last lines said by a girl Corphish on every single one of my dates!>”, Corphish, half joked, straying away from an awkward silence.

    They grinned and walked to Jeff’s side.
    That LOLable!!!

    “<Wow, a real life human battle! Maybe we can yell commands to him like he does to us!>” Corphish said with some happy anticipation to Treecko.

    “<Corppy, what’s wrong with Jeff? Why hasn’t he punched Alan by now?>” Treecko asked his new teammate, who was still wiping mud off of his face.

    “<Beats me, do you think he doesn’t want to hurt Alan? Or that he feels bad about doing it? Maybe he’s waiting for us to tell him one of his attacks,>” he replied.
    Yep, that’s gotta be it, Corppy… ^_^

    Torchic blinked and stared at Corphish, confused.

    “<What? Does nobody watch TV?>” Corphish asked in frustration.
    Corphish is killing me!!!

    “What the hell soes it look like?”
    “What the hell does it look like?”

    “<Jeff, you must be a Russian dictator…because you are STALIN’.>”
    Great, he faces a rabid Sandshrew and he’s cracking jokes…

    I love the lighthearted nature of this fic so far... and it seems that many a main character are getting their emo-funk on...

    all in all, headed in the right direction, so keep it coming!

    I've got my eye on this...

    L@er!

    Oh yeah, forgot to rate...



    OK, L@er!
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  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by thesceptileaddict View Post
    this fic,in one word,verygreatoneofthebest (its still one word:P)now i know theres 2 other treecko's evolution lovers, griff4815,and eylvorg!cant wait for chapter 8!
    Thanks, I'm happy you like it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Glajummy View Post
    Were you expecting this? Of course you were...



    I recently learned that eyes don't actually "bleed", they just excrete liquid. This isn't a real mistake because a "bloody eye" is a common term.




    Haha... I love Corphish. Can't wait to see his personality after evolution.




    "a" became "A"... I think that's right.




    You forgot to press enter twice here.
    Thanks for pointing all of those out, Glajummy. I'm looking forward to your next chapter.

    Quote Originally Posted by Air Dragon View Post
    Damn, i hate delaying reviews... but when you're in final year at uni you have little choice.

    Grammar check! There were more but i decided to leave some meat for the others to chew on...



    The lizard said as the two shook hands…err, tails?



    Jeff claimed, becoming hard-headed and disagreeable.



    I couldn’t bear the thought of not having him with me at all times.



    My kinda Corphish... reminds me a lot of me...



    He tackled Treecko and the two began to playfully fight each other on the ground.



    OH NOEZ!! NOT DA DREADED TICKLE ATTACK!!!



    That’s “<Let’s give ’em hell,>” Corphish battle cried to Treecko, who looked away in displeasure.

    Plus i think Treecko thinks he’s already there...



    Treecko stared down the small pokemon, causing it to back off, frightened. He then



    That LOLable!!!



    Yep, that’s gotta be it, Corppy… ^_^



    Corphish is killing me!!!



    “What the hell does it look like?”



    Great, he faces a rabid Sandshrew and he’s cracking jokes…

    I love the lighthearted nature of this fic so far... and it seems that many a main character are getting their emo-funk on...

    all in all, headed in the right direction, so keep it coming!

    I've got my eye on this...

    L@er!

    Oh yeah, forgot to rate...



    OK, L@er!
    Thanks for reviewing! I'm gecstatic that you like it.

    Yep, Corphish is definately one of my favorite characters to write.

    PS. Should I add you to the PM list?

    PPS. I'm adding Chapter 8 tomorrow. If anyone wants to be added to/removed from the PM list the contact me via PM.
    Last edited by Griff4815; 30th September 2007 at 3:39 AM.
    Claimed: Grovyle - November 10th, 2013
    Chapter 18 is up.

  10. #60
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    A Head as Hard as Rock


    Jeff and the trio of pokemon neared the large city of Rustboro. They stepped off of the wooden bridge and onto the more secure, solid grassland. Ahead of them was what appeared to be two trainers in the midst of battle, along with a crowd of five people watching. Corphish ran ahead to join the spectators, while Treecko walked to the right to get a better look at the battle. The onlookers cheered and hollered for the girl to win. They all watched the battle intently. Jeff remained standing with Daedalus in his folded arms; his wings were slumped over Jeff’s hands to weakly hang on. Jeff walked to his right, under the shade of a tree.

    On the battle field was a confident-looking woman dressed in a red and white-laced jogging outfit. She had short brown hair which flowed smoothly in the river breeze. The pokemon in front of her was a brick red fox pokemon. Its fur was magnificently beautiful. It had six puffy, orange, tails that it swung around in preparation for her trainer’s orders. Facing the two was a person and pokemon that seemed strikingly familiar to Jeff.

    The male human was wearing a white t-shirt and blue shorts that didn’t go past his knees. He had a strong but slender face, his eyes covered by sunglasses. He brushed a hand through his very short, almost buzzed head of dark brown hair, in frustration. His pokemon was a blue and white bird, but it could not fly. The pokemon’s yellow feet were shaking. The blue penguin’s chest was a light blue with the false impression that the pokemon was wearing a cape, which was made up of blue fur that hung down its back. He had a bruise on his large blue head. There were white splotches of fur around the water pokemon’s sad, beady, black eyes. Beside them were a grey bike and a blue helmet sprawled in the grass.

    It hit Jeff who these two were. Jeff recalled back to when he ran to the lab to get his pokemon, he saw this guy riding on a bike through town with that pokemon. He also remembered that Kristie referred to that pokemon as a Piplup. His eyes drifted from the battle to the grass. He went from remembering the Piplup to remembering Kristie. All he could picture then was Kristie and Alan making out in front of him. He shut his eyes and could feel a hot wave of sweat creep around his spine. With his eyes closed the thought of them kissing continued and became more intense. He dropped one arm, almost causing Daedalus to fall from his arm, and clenched his fist. A bead of sweat dropped from his arm and onto his fist, which shook with rage. He widened his eyes and tried to concentrate on the fight to take his mind from his thoughts.

    “Okay, Vulpix, use swift!” yelled the girl to her fox pokemon.

    The pokemon opened its mouth wide and let out a cute “VUULLL” as it began to unleash the sharp energy stars at the poor Piplup. The Piplup covered his face with his hands. The stars cut through his skin but dissipated before they could damage any internal organs. The bleeding Piplup fell to the ground. The guy, who seemed only a little older than Jeff, rushed over to it with his bag in hand.

    “Come on, Piplup, I know you can do it!” encouraged the man, half-heartedly.

    “Pip… ” whimpered Piplup, shaking his head.

    Daedalus opened his eyes and groaned.

    “Take it easy, buddy,” advised Jeff in a low, reassuring tone.

    They both watched the battle, or massacre, from many meters away.

    “I believe in you, Piplup! We can win!” the man continued to urge.

    Piplup looked up at the man and blinked, giving in. The guy gave his Piplup a large potion to drink. The defeated pokemon struggled to get to his feet. Moments later, Piplup was brought to the ground again, by another barrage of stars.

    “Piplup, just hang in there a little more. You can do it!”

    The Piplup was given another potion and he got to his feet. He was taken down in the same fashion and brought back up in the same fashion.

    Jeff and Daedalus both looked at the pushy trainer in contempt.

    “That’s pathetic…” whispered Jeff through a grimace.

    “<I hope you don’t mean the pokemon…he’s doing everything he can out there.>”

    “I mean the human. He put his friend up against a much tougher foe, who’s clearly beating the crap out of that poor Piplup. Each time the Piplup is knocked down he urges him to keep going. The Piplup clearly doesn’t want to battle and that guy acts as if it’s a game and those phrases, which are supposed to mean something, are just passwords that keep the pokemon battling. His Piplup probably knows that those words are lies, but he will still battle for him because he’s his trainer and his friend.”

    “<Or maybe he’s too afraid of the human to do otherwise. He was probably taken from his home and doesn’t know what to do so he just does what his trainer wants so he can stick around.>”

    “Or maybe he just wants to think that his trainer is being sincere. Also, when the Piplup is knocked out he just keeps pumping him full of potions and revives. It’s like he doesn’t care how much the pokemon is getting hurt and he just keeps setting Piplup up so that he gets hurt more, in the false hope that he may win that time around.”

    “<Do all trainers do that? Do you, Jeff?>”

    “No!” Jeff quickly shot back, offended.

    Daedalus let out a heavy sigh of relief, but as he sighed he cringed. The aches from the encounter were still present and unyielding. They continued to watch the Piplup fall to the ground. The water pokemon began to edge away from the Vulpix; he didn’t dare turn his back to the pokemon. His wings were quivering and laced with cuts. His pseudo-cape was matted with so much dirt that barely any of its original color was showing.

    “<That trainer is more a pure idiot than he is stubborn! Although Piplup’s not seriously injured, the he must be going through a seemingly infinite time of pain…all so that he can see his trainer be happy.>”

    The Piplup tried to crawl away from the battle; tears were streaming down his face from the overwhelming situation. The girl, the Vulpix, and the crowd dispersed, acknowledging the fact that the fight was over.

    In a serious, profound tone, Daedalus added, “<What’s worse is that the Piplup is only young… too young for treatment like this. They think that they can justify using pokemon to fight their battles with the fact that they have a bond. The pokemon are too loyal and the humans too ignorant.>”

    The words that Daedalus had just uttered hit Jeff like stone in his gut. He leaned over, wary of the fragile Taillow, and picked up a stone. He tightly grasped it before throwing it. With a roar, he heaved it towards the river. Jeff was so angry because he knew Daedalus was right.

    Jeff brushed his hand through his hair and looked at Daedalus, who looked at him with confusion. “… You’re right; we can’t even fight our own battles on a personal level… we have to use our pokemon instead! It’s times like these that I’m sorta ashamed of being a human.” Jeff began to remember when he beat Alan in a pokemon battle but couldn’t punch him, personally. He bit his cheek and tightened his fist. Man, did he want to slug him across his lying face. Meanwhile, Daedalus looked up at Jeff with a serious face. An ounce of respect he gained for Jeff could be seen through his eyes. Corphish and Treecko walked back to Jeff when the onlookers dispersed.

    “<Well that was a disappointment… they didn’t even sell nachos for the battle!>” Corphish scoffed.

    “<I could have done better than that Piplup, and I’m a grass type!>” Treecko confidently sighed.

    Jeff and Daedalus both shot them glares in unison. Daedalus clawed his way up onto Jeff’s shoulder. They watched the guy sit his Piplup upright; he gave him a final potion and sat beside him.

    “We have to try harder next time! We can’t beat gyms like that!”

    The Piplup shook tears from his eyes looked at the ground in shame.

    “I know that you can do it but you’re not fighting to your full potential! I want you to try harder next time for me! You were doing it all wrong; you had to do it like I did, like we practiced! That’s the only way that we can become stronger and win!” provoked the biker.

    “<Jeff… can I?>” asked Daedalus in a determined rage. He dug his claws sharply into Jeff’s shoulder. Jeff instantly knew what he was talking about. He was surprised by the fact that Daedalus asked permission first.

    “Of course,” Jeff replied with a malicious grin on his face. He ignored the pain of the digging claws.

    Daedalus jumped from the shoulder perch and began to fly. His anger and the pain that he was already in served as a fuel for his flight. Daedalus flapped his wings and shot towards the man. He began to claw and peck at the guy’s face. The Piplup looked up and cracked a smile.

    “ARH, get it off me, GET IT OFF,” the guy yelled, flailing wildly.

    Treecko and Corphish looked at each other in bewilderment.

    “<Now that it’s brought up… that human’s face does kind of look like a bird house!>” giggled Corphish.

    Treecko decided not to intervene in anyway. He walked over to the tree that Jeff watched the battle from and sat against it, using his tail as a pillow.

    “<This is even better than that last battle!>” Corphish added, hopping around Jeff.

    After his share of venting anger, Daedalus flew back to Jeff, landing on his hand. As soon as he landed he collapsed in Jeff’s hands, the wounds from the Nidoking paying their toll.

    The guy ran over to Jeff, holding his bleeding cheek.

    “HEY! What the hell was that?! Your damn Taillow just attacked me!!”

    “Oh, sorry, he does that when he sees something that strikes him the wrong way. I’m Jeff, by the way.”

    “Yeah, okay, I’m Blane…”

    “Blane?!” Jeff asked with intent. “I remember hearing on the TV that you had the most fearsome Magmar in all of Kanto! I thought you were older… and less of a jerk.”

    “No… NO, not the gym leader, it’s B-L-A-N-E, no ‘I’! You should keep that thing on a tighter leash!”

    “That ‘thing’ is my friend, Daedalus, and I think you do enough of that for the both of us!”

    “What’s that supposed to mean?”

    “It means that you are more concerned about winning a battle than your own pokemon. If I were like you, then I’d probably be sending my Treecko against a fire type when he already has a serious burn, just so I’d win!”

    “You just mind your own business and keep Day… Dahh… WHATEVER! Keep your Taillow away from me!” With that he returned his Piplup to his pokeball and walked away from them.

    Jeff shot him a glare. “Let’s go into the city… I guess,” he remarked. Treecko jumped onto Jeff’s shoulder and Corphish, to Jeff’s annoyance, vicegripped Jeff’s pant leg in an attempt to climb onto his backpack. He slowly made it up further, clamping onto Jeff’s waist like he was scaling a mountain, before reaching the backpack.

    “<Real smooth there, Corppy,>” mentioned Treecko, eying the puncture holes in Jeff’s shorts and shirt.

    “<Oh, shut up, ninja boy! We couldn’t ALL make gymnastics team… as much as I would have liked to… >” Corphish retorted, the last part in a mumble.

    “<Ninja boy? Your nicknames are slipping as much as you are!>” taunted Treecko from Jeff’s shoulder.

    Corphish tried to hit Treecko from Jeff’s shoulder but felt himself slide backwards off the backpack. He clamped the very end of the bag and he dangled, refusing to let go.

    “Settle down you two, or do you want to end up back in a cage like last time?”

    They sighed while they began to enter the large city of Rustboro. Around them were many high rises and office buildings but it was nowhere near as energetic and yet, to Jeff, as gloomy as Petalburg City. One building that towered over all others was a grey skyscraper that said “Devon Corp.” on the very top. Jeff followed the building from roof to base with his eyes and at the bottom there was an ambulance, four police cars, and police tape sealing off the entrance.

    Jeff walked on the paved sidewalk towards a white building with a red shingle roofing, which was undoubtedly a pokemon center. The building looked no different from the pokemon center in Oldale and Petalberg. It was like all the centers in this general area had the exact same blueprints. Across the street from the Pokemon center was a large building labeled “Gym”. Beside it was an equally large building. The sign on the large grassy grounds of the building read “Rustboro Pokemon Academy”. The field must have been used for practicing and working with pokemon. Jeff walked through the sliding door and up to the counter.

    “How may I help you?” the pleasant and calm voice of Nurse Joy asked.

    “My pokemon need healing. They all have blunt impact wounds and Treecko and Corphish have rope burns on their arms,” Jeff explained to Nurse Joy.

    “A trainer battle?” Nurse Joy questioned Jeff, taking Daedalus into the back room followed by Treecko and Corphish.

    Jeff quickly answered, “No, a bad run in with a Nidoking.”

    Nurse Joy nodded and closed the door behind her. Jeff sat down on a red couch. He noticed a woman with long brown hair with pink bows eying him. He glanced over to her and noticed that she was dressed like a schoolteacher. She put a coffee mug to her fair-skinned face and took a sip. She abruptly stood up and walked out of the pokemon center.

    “Good news!” a cheery female voice affirmed. “Treecko and Corphish are all okay and should be in traveling shape! But, your Taillow has some internal bleeding so he will need to remain immobile with us for no more than a day,” explained Nurse Joy.

    “In-internal bleeding?! Where?! Will he be okay?! Can I see him?!” Jeff anxiously asked.

    “Yes, you can see him. There’s no need to worry, I’m sure he’ll be fine.”

    “<Fine? He was squeezed like an orange and slammed halfway into the ground… I’m surprised that he made it this far,>” Treecko muttered to Corphish.

    Jeff’s chest tightened with the comment. Some things are better left unheard. Jeff followed Nurse Joy into the door beside the counter, which turned into a hallway with four doors. They entered the first door on the right, which read ICU. Jeff remembered ‘take your kid to work day’ with his father; ICU meant Intensive Care Unit. It must have been bad.

    They opened the door and Jeff saw four beds. The closest one had a Mudkip, surrounded by two large, pink, balloon-esque pokemon. Both had egg pouches on their chests along with stubby arms and feet. The two Chanseys wore nurses’ hats. They were seen removing a large piece of glass from the Mudkip’s face, just beside the orange whiskers. Jeff turned his head and quickly walked over to Daedalus, who lay two beds away from the gruesome scene. Daedalus had his wing in a sling and bandages tied across his chest, concealing his red and white feathers on his chest.

    “He seems to have dislodged his wing while flying… it was already tender from the injury, so that must have set it off.”

    Jeff ran over to his bed and kneeled down beside him. “Are you okay?! Are you in a lot of pain? Do you need morphine?”

    “<I’m fine... stop looking at me like that, Jeff!>”

    “You sure you’re okay?”

    “<Yeah… but thanks for asking.>”

    “Your Taillow could use a lot of rest. We’re lucky he’s as hardy as he is or else he may not have made it.”

    Jeff’s heart sunk.

    May not have made it?!

    I KNEW I shouldn’t have let him fly ahead of me! I could have made it by those traps and saved them easily,” Jeff moaned in thought.

    Nurse Joy led them out of the room and back to the lobby.

    Jeff put Treecko on top of his backpack to relax and held Corphish with his two hands. He didn’t realize that his hands were trembling. “What now?” he asked his two pokemon.

    “<Now we do the hokey-pokey and we turn ourselves around! We go win your badge, dummy!>”

    “<Yeah, that is why we came here isn’t it?>” Treecko added.

    “You guys fight… so that I can have a badge? I don’t think so.”

    “<You know that a badge reflects just as much on the pokemon as it does the trainer. The trainer just wears it since us pokemon don’t have shirts!>”

    “<I’m actually agreeing with Corppy here. We want to win!>”

    “Are…are you guys sure? It’s dangerous,” Jeff asked again.

    “<We’re positive, damn it! We know what we’re getting into; you’re not conscripting us and sending us off to a war,>” Treecko insisted.

    “Thanks… really.” Jeff smiled, touched that his pokemon would battle despite the fact that he wasn’t doing it himself.

    “<Okay okay, settle down. Besides, I’m fighting first!>”

    “<My leafy *** you are! I don’t think you can take a gym battle!>” scoffed Treecko.

    “<I can take you!>” Corphish threatened through a grin.

    “Okay, enough! We’ll see when we get there!”

    Corphish scowled at Treecko, who coerced him through a triumphant, confident grin.

    Jeff turned around to Nurse Joy, who was handling a Sandshrew.

    “Excuse me, if Daedalus… the Taillow, wakes up, can you tell him that I’m out buying him some medicine?” Jeff pleaded.

    “Of course I will,” Nurse Joy responded

    “Thank you.”

    It’s best if Daedalus doesn’t know that I’m out fighting in a gym. After that conversation we had, I can’t face him if he knows I was trying to get a gym badge. Plus this way he thinks I’m doing things for others instead of selfishly getting a badge. I will give him medicine… except it will only be from my medical kit,” thought Jeff to himself.

    Jeff turned to his two pokemon and suggested, “Let’s get this done.”

    The two nodded and followed him out of the pokemon center. Conveniently the gym was right across the street from the center, so they crossed the road. There was not much traffic seeing as the sun was setting and people were already home from their jobs. The gym was about the size of a warehouse. There were two boulders on both sides of the glass door. Jeff opened the door and to his left was a bored-looking man sitting behind a counter. He was munching on a donut and watching a pokemon football game of the TV beside him.

    “And the Pinsirs have taken the lead against their arch nemeses the Heracrosses!” roared the sports announcer.

    The man looked up at Jeff and asked in a gruff voice, “You here for a gym battle?”

    Jeff looked unsurely at his companions who proceeded to lightly punch the backs of his legs.

    “Err… yeah! I’m here for a…gym battle,” he stammered.

    “Oookay, go through the door on your right and I’ll buzz in Roxanne,” the guard instructed.

    Jeff followed the order and walked from the main entrance, through a door, to the arena field. Jeff was in awe at the sight he saw; the field was the size of a football field. There were rocks ranging from massive boulders to pebbles strewn about the field. The terrain was hard and there were protrusions of land mass coming from the field which created slopes, as if an earthquake had hit it. The ceiling was high, so that flying pokemon could still move freely… although no good trainer in the right mind would put their flying pokemon up against rock types.

    A woman appeared from behind Jeff and poked him on the shoulder. Jeff turned around and it was the brunette who looked like a school teacher. She had a serious yet welcoming expression.

    “… Hi,” Jeff greeted with a puzzled tone.

    “Hello, I saw you in the pokemon center earlier. You must be here to battle me,” deduced the woman in a sweet voice.

    “You’re Roxanne?!”

    “Yes I am. I’m also one of the teachers on the Rustboro Pokemon Academy. What is your name?”

    “I’m Jeff… Jeff Growell. It’s nice to meet you. I… guess I’m ruuhhh… ready.” Jeff replied in uncertainty.

    “<Arceus… man up, Jeff…>” muttered Treecko under his breath. Jeff still heard and shot Treecko a glare.

    “You seem hesitant… but you are a new trainer, most new trainers are either over-confident, over-worried, or overwhelmed. Is something troubling you?” she asked in a soothing voice.

    “I… uh… it’s… no, it’s nothing. I only have two pokemon and I think the rules usually call for three on three battles.”

    “I was only planning on using two pokemon anyways,” Roxanne, the rock-type gym leader, explained.

    “But what if we come to a draw?” Jeff inquired, somewhat confused.

    Roxanne grinned as if she had a hidden agenda. “We’ll just see if it comes to that. Feel free to choose your first pokemon while I go to my side of the arena,” Roxanne suggested, starting to traipse along the rocky field.

    “Okay, I choose Corphish!” said Jeff, the one decision that he didn’t second guess.

    Corphish hopped about with excitement. Treecko, slightly insulted, darted his head at Jeff and opened his mouth to protest but he stopped himself. Instead he closed his mouth and walked away from them to lean on a rock.

    “<No need to be a sore loser but why would he choose him before me?>” thought Treecko.

    Reaching her side of the field she turned her head and informed, “By the way, it will be two rounds on a one on one battle.”

    Jeff nodded and she withdrew a pokeball from a briefcase which lay beside a large rock.

    “You’re up, Aaron!” she called, throwing a pokeball onto the rocky terrain.

    What appeared was not what Jeff had expected. A small, metal-backed quadruped formed from the red light. It shook small steel spikes which obtruded from its back, as if brandishing them. Dispersed, black spots could be seen on the tough shell of the pokemon. He identified it as an Aron, who was, in addition to rock, steel-typed. He had scene one of these creatures from his pokemon biology class. Professor Birch had brought one in to show an example of what a mix of an endoskeleton and exoskeleton of a pokemon was like.

    “Aaron, harden your shell please!” Roxanne advised her pokemon.

    The armor pokemon dug its feet into the ground and a crackling noise could be heard from the Aron’s stiffening shell and muscles.

    “Corphish… you use… do a... try a Crabhammer!” Jeff managed to spatter out in an incoherent order.

    Corphish caught the gist of the command and ran towards Aaron with his claw swinging in a downward cut.

    “<You’re going to be in a world pain from my claaaaa…>” Corphish trailed off in a wince as soon as his claw hit the iron shell. The claw hit a dull metal spike on the Aron’s back.

    “<OW OW OW OW!>” yelled Corphish, hopping around sucking his claw with his mouth. “<IT’S KIND OF LIKE SPARRING WITH A BRICK WALL HERE, JEFF!>”

    “Sorry, I’m sorry!” Jeff quickly answered. “Use your bubblebeam?” He asked, giving an insecure suggestion of Corphish’s defense tactic.

    “Aaron, quickly use headbutt!”

    The Aron tucked in its head and began to charge at Corphish, who was still shaking off the pain in his claw. Aaron struck Corphish’s side with its head. The impact actually created sparks from the friction of the two colliding shells. Corphish flew backwards into a rock which was his size.

    “Again!” Roxanne commanded with a serene voice.

    The iron armour pokemon continued running, head down, in a charge towards Corphish.

    Jeff struggled to order a defense command in time. “Corphish, hurry…uh, try a… I know!” But it was too late. Aron rammed him into the rock with a sickening crack. The force from the two tough objects shot Corphish upwards. The ruffian pokemon landed back on the rock and slumped to the ground. Jeff dashed over to Corphish and gently placed him in his arms.

    “Oh… Arceus! Say something, Corppy!”

    Corphish managed to strike a faint grin. “<You know how much I hate being stuck between a rock and a hard place…>”

    “So your Corphish can no longer battle… good effort, though. Aaron, come back!” Roxanne called.

    “I’m sorry,” Jeff said, picking up Corphish and bringing him back to his side of the field.

    “<Oh, get over it! It’s not your fault Corphish lost! You have nothing to be sorry for!>” Treecko prodded, annoyed at Jeff’s constant self-pitying behavior.

    Jeff glared at Treecko and pointed a thumb towards the field. “You’re up, Treecko. It’s all riding on you.”

    The lizard stepped forward to the left of a large rock, flicked his twig up before catching it in his mouth, and struck a confident pose. As Treecko did this cocky gesture, a fresh pokeball was released onto the field.

    “Slate! Go for it!” the gym leader called, releasing her second pokeball onto the ground.

    Slate appeared to be a small boulder with two arms and a broad face. It tucked its arms to its chest and rolled forward, going faster. What the rock pokemon known as Geodude was famous for was its attack ‘rollout’. The Geodude rolled along the ground, picking up both dirt and speed.

    “Slate, keep using rollout!” Roxanne encouraged the boulder pokemon. Slate kept rolling forward towards Treecko, constantly gaining momentum.

    Treecko saw a window of opportunity. He decided to back up against a large boulder. Treecko outstretched his arms and dug his feet into the ground, waiting for the enemy to take the offensive in the fight. Slate came towards the wood gecko, who had a plan and now had his tail firmly against the boulder. The Geodude rapidly neared Treecko.

    Jeff yelled, “Treecko what the hell are you doing?! If you don’t want to battle then don’t leave yourself wide open; come back here!”

    Jeff could no longer see Treecko behind the boulder, but he had a feeling that Treecko was giving him a defiant look. Jeff could see the Geodude become ever closer to the Treecko and the boulder. When it was three feet away Treecko jumped and Slate rammed right into the boulder. A dirt cloud erupted around the boulder hindering all vision. The smoke began to dissipate and Geodude could be seen no longer rolling and fallen on its back, stunned. Treecko landed on the top of the boulder above Slate.

    Jeff decided to do something; Treecko was making him look like an incompetent idiot. “Now try a bullet seed!” he yelled.

    Treecko glanced back and opened his mouth to fire. Nothing came out except for air! Treecko was surprised at the lack of Bullet Seeds coming from him.

    “Treecko, what’s wrong?” Jeff called to him.

    Treecko desperately tried again; this time it worked. Geodude tried to get back up but he was bombarded with bright green energy bullets pelting him into the ground. Dust and rock fragments shot up around Geodude. The smoke cleared; Geodude’s unconscious body could be seen lodged halfway into the ground. The boulder pokemon snorted in defeat.

    “Good try, Slate!” remarked Roxanne before recalling it, leaving a crater beside the boulder.

    “<Alright!>” said Jeff and Treecko in unison. “What happened there, Treecko?”

    “<I… don’t know,>” he answered, lost in deep thought. Treecko glanced at Corphish who drank a potion down whole in one gulp.

    Jeff and Roxanne met at the center of the arena.

    “It’s a draw… so now what?”

    “I overheard you talking to Nurse Joy in the pokemon center. You said that your pokemon had a run in with a Nidoking?”

    “Yeah… they were captured by him but managed to escape… why?”

    “That Nidoking has been causing problems for the people and pokemon native to Rustboro and its surrounding areas. Just recently he stole two fossils from the Devon Corporation.”

    Jeff tilted his head in response to hearing the name of the company. Then he remembered the massive building with the police tape around it.

    “The Devon Corporation is a company local to this city that creates many futuristic technologies… one of which includes a fossil reviver. The Nidoking broke into the company late one night, knocked out the guards and stole two ancient pokemon fossils from the lab.”

    “Okay… why are you telling me this?”

    “I want you to defeat… or even distract the Nidoking long enough for me and a small team of others to go into his territory and take the fossils back. If you can do that and make it out in one piece… you can not only have the badge but Rustboro City will be in your debt.”

    Jeff was shocked. “Debt? I’ll do it… but I don’t want any debt or anything… even the badge...”

    “Leave at nine-o-clock sharp! I’ll send the team in fifteen minutes after and I’ll meet you under the bridge on the far side of the river.”

    “Yeah, okay.”

    Jeff picked up Corphish and, with Treecko, walked from the rocky arena and past the sleeping security guard at the main desk. He lay strewn amongst donuts and many copies of ‘sports illustrated’. They opened the front door and headed off back towards the pokemon centre. On the way Jeff couldn’t help but wonder why she chose him to do this mission.

    Why did she choose me? I’m an awful trainer… I can’t even keep my own pokemon from being taken and beaten up,” he couldn’t help but ponder. More thoughts crossed his mind. “What if I can’t hold him off? What if Treecko or Corphish end up like Daedalus or worse?! Why can’t they distract him instead of us?!”

    They crossed the black asphalt road. Street lights began to turn on when the sun set completely into the west. The traffic was now nonexistent, which was strange given the size of the city. Jeff, Corphish and Treecko walked into the pokemon center. Jeff greeted the cheerful Nurse Joy. He was worried that she’d think that he was a horrible person for letting his pokemon get hurt so much. Jeff sheepishly muttered, “I think Corphish needs another check up.”

    “Of course, Jeff!” Nurse Joy smiled. She took Corphish and his pokeball, and went into the back room. She opened the door to the room and Daedalus instantly flew out of the room and flew over to Jeff. He chirped ecstatically; he was happy to be away from the aid station, landing on Jeff’s shoulder.

    “Hey! I’m glad you’re alright, buddy!” Jeff greeted with relief. Daedalus shrugged at Jeff’s gesture of friendliness. Daedalus’ coldness towards him was still fresh and Jeff couldn’t help but feel more rejected. “Right… okay, I gotcha. Anyways, you know that Nidoking?”

    He nodded and chirped with an angry trill.

    “Good, because we’re going to pay him a visit very soon!” Jeff fueled on Taillow’s revenge lust.

    “All done!” Nurse Joy stated cheerily. She handed back Corphish’s pokeball, which Jeff opened on the ground. "Remember to get your Taillow to stay off of his wing for awhile."

    Jeff looked at Daedalus, whose face became disconcerted at the thought of being landlocked.

    Jeff winked at him and lied, “Sure, I’ll get right on that!”

    “Saddle up, you three, we’re going to take down the king,” Jeff explained, trying to boost the anticipation. Jeff was not prepared for anything of this calibre. He couldn’t even command a simple trainer battle. How could he possibly pull off something like this? He felt as if he was getting a stomach ulcer. One thing Jeff knew for sure was that fear was contagious, so he swallowed his own and forced an adrenaline filled grin.

    He bent down to quickly pick up Corphish, as well as to let Treecko climb up his back. Jeff cringed as Treecko scaled his back and set up camp on his right shoulder, opposite to Daedalus. “You know, Treecko, those mini needle-hook things on your palms and soles really do hurt!” Jeff complained.

    Treecko patted Jeff’s cheek with his hook-laden hand, causing Jeff to shout out in pain. Jeff scowled at Treecko, who gave a calm grin which lightly said, “Deal with it!”

    “Let’s go!” Jeff crankily ordered.

    He pressed his hands on the glass door. When Jeff opened the doors a night breeze swept into the Pokemon Center. They inhaled and smelled a sea breeze with a mixture of car exhaust which blew by their heads. Treecko jumped down from Jeff’s shoulder; the breeze seemed to stimulate Treecko’s urge to battle. He walked ahead of the three, eager to get the show on the road.

    “Yeah, yeah. Don’t get your tails in a twist,” Jeff muttered, his mood worsening, not liking to be rushed.

    Jeff caught up to Treecko and they walked past the tall office buildings and out of the streetlight lit city. They retraced their steps, walking over the wet grass and reaching a large, wooden bridge. Treecko ran ahead of Jeff and the others, stopping on the other side and chilling out against a sign post. Jeff admired the calm river which they walked over. The full moon reflected in the flowing water, casting a blue light on Jeff, Corphish, and Daedalus. They finally made it across the bridge and they walked down a hill to the right of the bridge. They walked by the riverside beach and stopped at the sign that Nidoking had created.

    “Here we are…what are we supposed to do now?” Jeff thought out loud.

    Daedalus raised his wing with a triumphant look.

    “<Either you have a plan or you just telepathically won a game of chess with an Alakazam,>” Corphish pointed out.

    “<I do! We’re going to set up an ambush right over there in the middle of the beach over there.>” Daedalus pointed his wing at the trap filled beach. “<We’ll set up bait somewhere where there are no traps. I’ll hide in a tree; Corphish, you hide in the river and barrage him with bubble beam when he’s caught off guard. Jeff, you can help fight if you want, but watch out for his poison spikes and his tail.>”

    “<That’s a great plan, Monty, but what’s the bait?>” Corphish asked. Daedalus stared at Treecko, followed by Corphish and Jeff.

    “<Heh, no deal. This plan is Tauros crap. I’m not going along with this.>” Treecko scoffed with a cool defiance.

    “Fine, I’ll be the bait,” Jeff sighed in irritation. “You do what Dae told me to do.”

    “<No way, I don’t need someone telling me what to do; I know my strengths and you should just let me fight the Nidoking on my own,>” Treecko insisted.

    Jeff shot him a cold, disapproving look. “We’re doing Daedalus’ plan,” he angrily claimed.

    “<Fine, you guys do your thing, I’ll do mine.>”

    “I see what Professor Birch means with his stubbornness and independence,” Jeff muttered to himself as Treecko walked away from them. Treecko’s adept hearing picked up on the comment. Offended, he indignantly sighed and climbed up a nearby tree to avoid the traps.

    “<Jeff, you get to your place. I’ll guide you to make sure you don’t step on any traps.>”

    Jeff, with Taillow on his shoulder, carefully treaded over the sand to avoid the traps. Corphish dove underwater in the river until all but his eyes and horns were submerged. Treecko watched the three in action, sceptical of their over-thought plan.

    Jeff sat down in a trap free, sanded area. Taillow pecked him in the leg, sharply.

    “Ach, damn it!” He cried out, clutching his bleeding leg.

    “<We have to make your performance realistic,>” Daedalus reassured. “<Also, that’s for Treecko bullet seeding me in Petalburg Forest,>” he grinned before taking off to perch in a dark tree crown.

    The waiting game had begun. Corphish exhaled bubbles from his mouth for amusement.

    Pretty soon they could hear the loud stomps breaking branches in the nearby forest. The group became nervous in anticipation of the oncoming giant. They stayed in their places as the stomps became louder. There was still only darkness in the forest. Soon they could see the glint of Nidoking’s purple horn in the moonlight. His body became visible as he stepped out of the forest and onto the sand. He had a large black eye patch covering his right eye.

    “<Well, well, well. An injured human in my territory! You must have hit your leg on one of my traps!>” he growled, walking closer to Jeff. He walked up to him and grabbed Jeff up by the collar. The Nidoking held Jeff over his head. "GRAAAAAGH!" he roared in Jeff's face, causing it to become wet with saliva and hot air “<I am DAGGERBACK THE OPPRESSOR… AND YOU SHALL PAY!>”

    “<What a coincidence! ‘The’ is his middle name and ‘Oppressor’ is his last name… it fits perfectly!>” Corphish thought while he treaded in the water.

    “<NOW!>” Daedalus trilled in a battle cry. He swooped out from behind the shaded tree branched and began to peck at the back of Nidoking’s head, leaving bleeding cuts. Nidoking roared and threw Jeff to the side. He turned around and began to swat at Daedalus. Corphish burst from the river water and unleashed a volley of bubbles at the Nidoking who called himself Daggerback. The bubbles hit Nidoking, distracting him from Daedalus. He roared as they burst on his gigantic chest. He whacked away Daedalus with one arm and began to charge full speed at Corphish. Corphish continued to fire his bubble beams at him. Daggerback endured the bubbles and picked up Corphish in one hand, beginning to squeeze with all his might.

    “<That’s a mighty fine hand shake you got ther-AHHH!!>” Corphish tried to joke but let out a scream when he felt his shell beginning to crack under the pressure of Daggerback’s palm.

    Nidoking, with Corphish still in hand, ran back from the river, dropped Corphish and swung his tail. With expert precision, Nidoking whacked Corphish with his tail towards the Taillow, knocking him out of the air. Corphish’s hard shell KO’d Daedalus out on impact. He fell from the air and landed on his bad wing. Jeff got to his feet and prepared a battle stance.

    Treecko, who watched the plan go to hell, decided it was his time to intervene. He jumped from tree branch to tree branch until he was above Nidoking, who approached Jeff, cracking his knuckles. Treecko jumped down in front of Nidoking.

    “Nice eye patch. Wasn’t that Corphish and my’s handy work?>” Treecko mocked.

    “<YOU! I shall take BOTH of your eyes!>” he bellowed.

    “<Come and try,>” he taunted, folding his arms.

    ‘Daggerback the Oppressor’ roared and charged at Treecko, horn lowered like a Tauros. Treecko ran to the Nidoking’s right side, knowing that his vision was gone for that side. He jumped up onto Daggerback and crawled between his ears and onto his head. He looked downwards and fired an array of glowing green seed onto Nidoking’s face. Daggerback’s charge was forced into the sand by the sudden pressure on his head. As the beast skidded forwards in the sand, Treecko jumped from his head and landed triumphantly in front of him. Just to be sure he was down, Treecko unloaded another mouthful of bright green seeds into Daggerback’s head.

    “<That was for putting me in a cage,>” Treecko spat, coldly.

    He held up Nidoking’s bleeding and battered head by the horn and indicated that he was definitely unconscious. Jeff had helped up Daedalus and Corphish. They walked to Treecko’s side and stared in awe at the finally downed beast.

    Jeff looked at Treecko who stared back at him with a cool, smug grin that made Jeff want to punch him.

    “Oh, shut up!” Jeff shot at him, sore about being wrong.

    “<What are we going to do with Patchy here?>” Corphish asked, pointing weakly to the body.

    “Corphish has a good point, he’s heavier than me and those poisonous horns are going to be a pain in the *** if we have to carry him. Where would we even carry him?” Jeff asked Daedalus.

    Daedalus put his wing to his chin in thought. He stared out into the river and saw a couple rowing a boat. The Taillow snapped two of his feathers together, indicating an idea.

    “<I’ve got it! We’ll use that boat, that way we can send him down river so he’ll be out of here, and we won’t have to drag him anywhere. Corphish, do your thing; besides, you are the ruffian pokemon!>” Daedalus suggested.

    Corphish dove into the water and swam towards the boat. The couple looked worried as three orange horns in the water drew close to them. His pincers grabbed the side of the small boat.

    The couple looked at him warily and the man began to reach for his pokeballs. “<I’m sorry, we’re going to have to commandeer your love boat,>” Corphish said uncomfortably. He then had made a facial gesture that said, “Oh, wow, surprise!” in a mock-shocked smile, as if he was going to his own surprise party but already knew of it before hand.

    “<Have a wonderful evening, you two,>” he smiled before flipping the boat over.

    The couple screamed as they fell into the water and swam to the opposite shore. Corphish proceeded to drag the capsized rowboat to the coast. The two continued to scream and cuss at the mischievous Corphish, who was now in stitches while he pulled the boat. They stomped soaking wet back towards Rustboro City, most likely to report the misdeed.

    Jeff helped him drag it ashore. He dragged it onto the sand and tipped it over to pour the water out. Jeff and Treecko pulled the unconscious Nidoking into the boat, cautious of his poison-laced horns. When he was resting fully in the boat, Jeff pushed the boat off into the tame current of the calmed river. They watched the Nidoking disappear into the fog capped rivers.

    “<Goodbye, Purplebeard! Good luck finding the Black Pearl!>” Corphish called after him.

    Jeff took out a blue, spray-on potion bottle and sprayed Corphish and Daedalus’ wounds with it.

    “There, the wounds should fully heal in about twenty minutes.” Jeff informed, picking them up. “Let’s rest for about ten minutes to let the potion take affect.”

    They sat and waited in the night. Tensions were high, wounds were deep, and time ate away at their sanity.

    Much to their surprise and relief, pattering of many feet could be heard coming from the forest. A team of Roxanne and five others appeared from the darkness; in the same direction that Nidoking came. They were all dressed in black. Roxanne stepped forward; she had a scowl on her face.

    “Jeff… I’m sorry.”

    Jeff eyed her precariously.

    “Your struggle was in vain. We infiltrated his home but the fossils were not found. We looked high and low… and nothing. You got rid of the Nidoking?”

    Jeff nodded. “Yes, he’s floating on a boat down the river.”

    “Darn… well, you did what I asked of you…you’re more than worthy of this badge.”

    She handed him a shiny badge which was shaped like two golden chevrons.

    “Thanks anyways,” Roxanne mumbled before turning away. The team walked up the hill and began to cross the bridge back to Rustboro City.

    As soon as they were gone Jeff began to stare at the badge in his hand. He grimaced and placed the badge in his white and green shoe. Not his badge case. Not his shirt. Not his backpack. It was in his shoe.

    The pokemon got to their feet.

    “<Ya think we’ll see Patchy again?>” Corphish asked the group.

    “<Given our luck, I wouldn’t be surprised. He doesn’t seem like one who will let go of a grudge quickly,>” Daedalus stated. “<Where are we headed now?>”

    “Dewford Island, I guess. We have to go back through Petalburg Forest to get to some Mr. Briney’s house. I hear he ferries people across the water.”

    “<Petalburg Forest…>” Daedalus said, ominously, “<Let’s go!>”

    Jeff walked with his pokemon that gave him so much, yet he returned so little.

    He sighed and thought, “Am I doing the right thing?”

    -------------------------------------

    AN:

    A lot of stuff happened in this chapter, I hope not an overwhelming amount.

    Blane (the guy with the Piplup) is kind of a reference to Ash. I just wanted to show a more realistic...I dunno version of what could pontentially happen with the typical trainer.

    First gym battle... woohoo.

    Beta'd by Diamondpearl876. Thanks BTW.

    I hope all who read it enjoyed the chapter.
    Last edited by Griff4815; 1st September 2009 at 3:15 PM.
    Claimed: Grovyle - November 10th, 2013
    Chapter 18 is up.

  11. #61
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    that was pretty interesting... can the Nidoking speak english though? because the part where he introduces himself, you don't use the "<>" thing like you normally do.

    other than that, brilliant!
    The first banner was slightly over 46800 pixels, so your entire signature was erased. Please read the signature rules.

  12. #62
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    The Piplup shook tears from his eyes and looked at the ground in shame.
    “Of course I will,” Nurse Joy responded.
    He had seen one of these creatures
    copies of ‘Sports Illustrated’.
    Could I BE any more awesome?!
    And once again Corphish gets the best lines...
    “<IT’S KIND OF LIKE SPARRING WITH A BRICK WALL HERE, JEFF!>”
    “<That’s a great plan, General Patton, but what’s the bait?>”
    “<Have a wonderful evening, you two,>”
    Then there's:
    I am DAGGERBACK THE OPPRESSOR… AND YOU SHALL PAY!
    LOL! This reminded me of the one X-Play "Splinter Cell Co-Op Bob and Steve" episode where Bob calls himself, "Thor-Axe the Impaler"! XD

    If I had to give one (fairly important) complaint, it would be that you didn't give Roxanne much of a distinct personality. And that's surprising, since you do so well with the Pokemon personalities. I'm not sure if it's because she's a one-time only character who won't appear again, but she seemed like a pretty generic Gym Leader.

    I do have to admit, when you first started this, I wasn't sure if I was going to stick around. But I'm glad I did, as this has grown into something quite interesting. Right now, I can't think of anything I've read recently where the Pokemon are more gung-ho for battle than the trainer is.

    Now, I'm not sure if you're reading my fic or not, but I would like your feedback on this issue if you are: Would my character's battle style be considered too harsh in Jeff's eyes; i.e., if he saw her battling, would he sic Daedalus on her to teach her a lesson? If you could answer via PM, it might help with character development for my own story. Thanks!

    Once again, though, an enjoyable read, and it was nice to see Nidoking get his comeuppance. Though I do have to wonder...

        Spoiler:- spoiler:

  13. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by HommeDor View Post
    that was pretty interesting... can the Nidoking speak english though? because the part where he introduces himself, you don't use the "<>" thing like you normally do.

    other than that, brilliant!
    Wow, thanks. I also fixed that Nidoking part.

    Quote Originally Posted by DarkPersian479 View Post
    And once again Corphish gets the best lines...




    Then there's:

    LOL! This reminded me of the one X-Play "Splinter Cell Co-Op Bob and Steve" episode where Bob calls himself, "Thor-Axe the Impaler"! XD

    If I had to give one (fairly important) complaint, it would be that you didn't give Roxanne much of a distinct personality. And that's surprising, since you do so well with the Pokemon personalities. I'm not sure if it's because she's a one-time only character who won't appear again, but she seemed like a pretty generic Gym Leader.

    I do have to admit, when you first started this, I wasn't sure if I was going to stick around. But I'm glad I did, as this has grown into something quite interesting. Right now, I can't think of anything I've read recently where the Pokemon are more gung-ho for battle than the trainer is.

    Now, I'm not sure if you're reading my fic or not, but I would like your feedback on this issue if you are: Would my character's battle style be considered too harsh in Jeff's eyes; i.e., if he saw her battling, would he sic Daedalus on her to teach her a lesson? If you could answer via PM, it might help with character development for my own story. Thanks!

    Once again, though, an enjoyable read, and it was nice to see Nidoking get his comeuppance. Though I do have to wonder...

        Spoiler:- spoiler:
    Haha, I'm glad you liked it.

    heh, about the Nidoking I got the idea to go for a ridiculous, corny name that he named himself.

    I admit I don't really know how to deal with canon characters and their personalities.

    I'm also happy you decided to stick around, too.

    I haven't read your fic yet although I've been meaning to. As soon as I read a good portion I'll send you that PM.

    As for the fossil theft...you'll just have to wait and see.
    Claimed: Grovyle - November 10th, 2013
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    Looks like Treecko is taking it upon himself to keep Jeff's head in the game, definitely a role that fits his personality. Of course, after all that's happened recently, Jeff is still in that funk of his; it'll definitely be interesting to see what it takes to finally snap him out of it for good.

    I'd also like to find out more about Daedalus and his abilities. It seems that he has experience in coming up with battle strategies, so I could definitely see him as being a major asset to Jeff's team. Also, will Daedalus need to be convinced to challenge Gyms, or will he realize that Jeff wouldn't cruelly push his Pokemon into hopeless battles like Blane does?

    Oh, and:

    Quote Originally Posted by Griff4815 View Post
    “<What a coincidence! ‘The’ is his middle name and ‘Oppressor’ was his last name… it fits perfectly!>” Corphish thought while he treaded in the water.
    I lol'd.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BladedScizor View Post
    Looks like Treecko is taking it upon himself to keep Jeff's head in the game, definitely a role that fits his personality. Of course, after all that's happened recently, Jeff is still in that funk of his; it'll definitely be interesting to see what it takes to finally snap him out of it for good.

    I'd also like to find out more about Daedalus and his abilities. It seems that he has experience in coming up with battle strategies, so I could definitely see him as being a major asset to Jeff's team. Also, will Daedalus need to be convinced to challenge Gyms, or will he realize that Jeff wouldn't cruelly push his Pokemon into hopeless battles like Blane does?

    Oh, and:



    I lol'd.
    I'm happy you liked it. And thank you for reviewing.

    Yup, things involving Jeff and Treecko...will happen. Thats all I can really say. Before I rewrote the chapter before the last one... Jeff was snapped out of it at the point where they were running from Daedalus and Treecko hit him to the ground. Then I thought..."What if that doesn't happen.."

    As for your Daedalus question... I don't know yet xD
    Claimed: Grovyle - November 10th, 2013
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    Okay, finally getting my *** into gear and reviewing. Main reason for this being that I just wrote two pages straight of my fic (^0^) and am now in need of a break.

    Seeing as I have two chapters to comment on, and that I read them on Monday and can't be bothered to go through them fully again, this review will a bit be more general than my usual ones.

    First of all, it's great that you now have a beta. The improved grammar really makes reading easier. I think there's still a little false punctuation around speech marks, but that doesn't interrupt the flow as much as other mistakes do, for me at least.

    Daedalus. I like him, but I also have a problem with him. I think you developed him far too quickly - when he was first caught I liked his "Damn, caught by a stupid human, what will my flock do without me?" attitude. Then he gets beaten up badly and it's pretty much Jeff's fault. Then, somehow, mysteriously, towards the end of the chapter he's perfectly happy to help Jeff rescue Corphish and Treecko. After being healed he seems a little cut off from Jeff again, but not for long as by the end of that chapter Jeff is wondering why Daedalus is so loyal when he gets nothing in return. Now don't get me wrong, I like these character traits, they just seem wrong when they're all on the same character within such a short period of time. Insane development curve aside, I think Daedalus is going to be a useful "wise leader" type to contrast with the hot-headedness of Treecko and Corphish.

    Treecko and Corphish did indeed seem like they would clash at some point, and it's good that they now *sort of* get along. The ending of chapter 7 bothered me a bit for three reasons. One, it seemed rather clichéd. Two, like DarkPersian said, try not to make them become great friends too quickly. Three, the "would soon become a powerful, bonded comradeship" part struck me as being a spoiler for later chapters. In my mind, spoilers should never be found in the story itself.

    Now for the whole Nidoking thing. I really like that you've added in what seemed at first to be just some filler plot to fill in between Petalburg Woods and Rustboro, but then it developed and turned out to be something much bigger and seemingly important to the great central plot that you've said you're working towards. Daggerback himself seemed a bit stereotypical, but I think that's what you were aiming for so I won't say any more.

    Jeff's emoness is spawning some really interesting situations with his Pokemon - I think it's great how he doesn't want his Pokemon to battle for his own gain, and how this ironically results in them getting hurt more. I would have said a few chapters back that this sort of behaviour is totally un-Jeff, but obviously his broken heart has changed him and you showed that well.

    And to end, I would like to quote the amazing (though not as funny in these chapters as in previous ones) Corphish.
    “<Goodbye, Purplebeard! Good luck finding the Black Pearl!>” Corphish called after him.
    Pray tell, where is he buying the DVDs?
    Also, loved it when he capsized the boat. I can imagine how much he must have enjoyed it.

    Aaand that'll be it. *wanders off back to MS Word*
    .: Evolution is a battle .:. Something has to lose :.
    LOST EVOLUTION
    Chapter 33: Inside has been posted.


    Foregone Conclusion
    Spinoff/prequel/backstory/thingy to Lost Evolution, written for NaNoWriMo 2010

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    Quote Originally Posted by elyvorg View Post

    First of all, it's great that you now have a beta. The improved grammar really makes reading easier. I think there's still a little false punctuation around speech marks, but that doesn't interrupt the flow as much as other mistakes do, for me at least.
    Please explain these false punctuation things. I've been trying to see what you meant by them but I really can't see what they are. :/

    Quote Originally Posted by elyvorg View Post
    Daedalus. I like him, but I also have a problem with him. I think you developed him far too quickly - when he was first caught I liked his "Damn, caught by a stupid human, what will my flock do without me?" attitude. Then he gets beaten up badly and it's pretty much Jeff's fault. Then, somehow, mysteriously, towards the end of the chapter he's perfectly happy to help Jeff rescue Corphish and Treecko. After being healed he seems a little cut off from Jeff again, but not for long as by the end of that chapter Jeff is wondering why Daedalus is so loyal when he gets nothing in return. Now don't get me wrong, I like these character traits, they just seem wrong when they're all on the same character within such a short period of time. Insane development curve aside, I think Daedalus is going to be a useful "wise leader" type to contrast with the hot-headedness of Treecko and Corphish.
    Daedalus wasn't really rescuing Corppy and Treecko for Jeff it was more because he liked... or didn't mind, rather... them. Daedalus was slowly and reluctantly excepting the fact that he was with them now.

    As for this "Jeff walked with the pokemon that gave him so much, yet he returned so little." As you mentioned. This wasn't specifically referring to Daedalus. After reading the line before it I get that it seemed like thats who I was talking about. The line in fact reffered to mainly Treecko and Corphish as they have been around longer. Sorry for throwing you off.

    To be honest     Spoiler:- :




    Quote Originally Posted by elyvorg View Post
    Treecko and Corphish did indeed seem like they would clash at some point, and it's good that they now *sort of* get along. The ending of chapter 7 bothered me a bit for three reasons. One, it seemed rather clichéd. Two, like DarkPersian said, try not to make them become great friends too quickly. Three, the "would soon become a powerful, bonded comradeship" part struck me as being a spoiler for later chapters. In my mind, spoilers should never be found in the story itself.
    The chapter 7 ending was completely my fault. I just wanted a way to end the chapter and I didn't know how else. What was worse is that I decided to slowly develop their relationship more slowly AFTER I posted that chapter. I should also change that xD

    Quote Originally Posted by elyvorg View Post
    Now for the whole Nidoking thing. I really like that you've added in what seemed at first to be just some filler plot to fill in between Petalburg Woods and Rustboro, but then it developed and turned out to be something much bigger and seemingly important to the great central plot that you've said you're working towards. Daggerback himself seemed a bit stereotypical, but I think that's what you were aiming for so I won't say any more.
    Thanks, for noticing that Yeah I was going for steriotype there.

    Quote Originally Posted by elyvorg View Post
    Jeff's emoness is spawning some really interesting situations with his Pokemon - I think it's great how he doesn't want his Pokemon to battle for his own gain, and how this ironically results in them getting hurt more. I would have said a few chapters back that this sort of behaviour is totally un-Jeff, but obviously his broken heart has changed him and you showed that well.
    Thanks. More to come!

    I wonder what will bring Jeff out of his thing? Wait, shouldn't I know this?

    Quote Originally Posted by elyvorg View Post
    And to end, I would like to quote the amazing (though not as funny in these chapters as in previous ones) Corphish.

    Pray tell, where is he buying the DVDs?
    Also, loved it when he capsized the boat. I can imagine how much he must have enjoyed it.

    Aaand that'll be it. *wanders off back to MS Word*
    I'm trying not to overdo his comedy in these few (and next) chapter, since the situations are abit ... non comedic to say the least. But he has a barker lounger back at his pond as well as a TV where he steals cable and electricity from the nearby pokemon center. The DVDs he gets from Blockbuster Video (no more late fees!) The boat capsizing was the funnest scene from that portion of the chapter.

    Oh and thanks for reviewing, Elyvorg
    Claimed: Grovyle - November 10th, 2013
    Chapter 18 is up.

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    Whew. I just finished the whole fic. Okay, like most people have already said, you have improved since the first chapter. The way it began with a series of flashbacks was different. But I have some problems.

    Jeff and Treecko are a problem for me. I don't mean to complain, but the beginning they were way too stereotypical. Taking all that punishment from that Fearow, for example, was a little unrealistic. He just seems to perfect. But it mostly has improved, so I'll leave it at that.

    As everyone else has said, characters are your strong point. Corphish is one of my favorite characters, simply because of how funny he is. Treecko, or 'Gri...' is also fairly intersting.

    Description is about average. You have improved by quite a bit since the first few chapters, but they're still a ways to go. Keep improving!

    Plot is a little tricky. I really can't say where this is going right now, but I'm sure you have something interesting planned. So far there have been some interesting bits, such as Jeff and Kristie, were pretty interesting.

    And, of course, one of my reviews wouldn't be complete without my favorite quotes.

    Corphish emerged from the red beam and stood, facing the Sandshrew.

    “<Somebody call PBS because Hammie the Hamster escaped and now he’s a hardass!>” Corphish taunted his opponent.

    “Corphish… uhh… use… erm… ” Jeff acted as if this was his first battle and he had never seen a Corphish in his life; too much was racing in his mind.

    “<Jeff, you must be a Russian dictator…because you are STALIN’.>”
    I really like Corphish. He can really make me laugh...

    Anyway, this is pretty interesting. You've improved by quite a bit since you started. I can't guarantee I can keep up with each chapter, but you've got me interested, and I always will read a good Journey Fic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Griff4815 View Post
    Please explain these false punctuation things. I've been trying to see what you meant by them but I really can't see what they are. :/
    Ok, I guess I shouldn't have been quite so vague; I just wasn't in the mood for being over-picky.

    So anyway, here is an extract from the punctuation section of Dragonfree's writing guide, which makes it much clearer than I ever could and is pretty much where I learnt how to properly punctuate stuff in speech marks myself.

    Now, for the evil... PUNCTUATION AROUND QUOTATION MARKS!

    Now... who can tell me which of the following is correct?

    * "I know." He said.
    * "I know." he said.
    * "I know," he said.
    * "I know" he said.

    The answer is the third one: "I know," he said. Why is it so? Well, you're still continuing the same sentence.

    Imagine that direct quotes were not enclosed in quotation marks. Then these examples would look like this:

    * I know. He said.
    * I know. he said.
    * I know, he said.
    * I know he said.

    Now, don't the other three just look kinda wrong now? In the first one, "He said" is made into an individual sentence, suggesting that what he said is completely unrelated to "I know". In the second one, we have the same problem, except that the H is lowercase, which is obviously wrong because we always use a capital letter after a period. In the fourth one, it sounds like you know he said something, which is again not the intended meaning. Only the third one works.
    Yours is accurate nearly all of the time, I just noticed the occasional case of example two.
    .: Evolution is a battle .:. Something has to lose :.
    LOST EVOLUTION
    Chapter 33: Inside has been posted.


    Foregone Conclusion
    Spinoff/prequel/backstory/thingy to Lost Evolution, written for NaNoWriMo 2010

    Three Heads Are Better Than One

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    Did you state yet that you changed the prologue? (didn't read any previous posts)

    Anyways. that was a great chapter, and it's obvious you're getting better in description. I like the leader personality you gave to Daedalus and I hope you stick with it.

    One problem, though...

    the field was the size of a football field.
    GREATLY contradicts with...

    The gym was about the size of a warehouse.
    and...

    Roxanne suggested, starting to traipse along the rocky field.
    That's a pretty amazing feat. It'd take me about 15 minutes (probably more) to walk that distance. There are a few other thing that don't fit with the whole "size of a football field thing". You may want to change that...

    Can't wait until the next update!
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    Quote Originally Posted by duncan View Post
    Whew. I just finished the whole fic. Okay, like most people have already said, you have improved since the first chapter. The way it began with a series of flashbacks was different. But I have some problems.

    Jeff and Treecko are a problem for me. I don't mean to complain, but the beginning they were way too stereotypical. Taking all that punishment from that Fearow, for example, was a little unrealistic. He just seems to perfect. But it mostly has improved, so I'll leave it at that.

    As everyone else has said, characters are your strong point. Corphish is one of my favorite characters, simply because of how funny he is. Treecko, or 'Gri...' is also fairly intersting.

    Description is about average. You have improved by quite a bit since the first few chapters, but they're still a ways to go. Keep improving!

    Plot is a little tricky. I really can't say where this is going right now, but I'm sure you have something interesting planned. So far there have been some interesting bits, such as Jeff and Kristie, were pretty interesting.

    And, of course, one of my reviews wouldn't be complete without my favorite quotes.



    I really like Corphish. He can really make me laugh...

    Anyway, this is pretty interesting. You've improved by quite a bit since you started. I can't guarantee I can keep up with each chapter, but you've got me interested, and I always will read a good Journey Fic.
    Thanks for reviewing, Duncan.

    Yeah, Jeff and Treecko...I know that that scene seems a bit too..."Ashy" to say the least, but it actually is a part of a few prominant themes in my fic     Spoiler:- :
    Its really all part of their characters and dynamics.

    Thanks for the character compliment and the description is a work in progress. I now have an idea of where I want to go with the plot, so thats good.

    Thanks for reading, reviewing and sticking around.

    Quote Originally Posted by elyvorg View Post
    Ok, I guess I shouldn't have been quite so vague; I just wasn't in the mood for being over-picky.

    So anyway, here is an extract from the punctuation section of Dragonfree's writing guide, which makes it much clearer than I ever could and is pretty much where I learnt how to properly punctuate stuff in speech marks myself.


    Yours is accurate nearly all of the time, I just noticed the occasional case of example two.
    Ah, I gotcha.

    Thanks for clearing that up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Glajummy View Post
    Did you state yet that you changed the prologue? (didn't read any previous posts)

    Anyways. that was a great chapter, and it's obvious you're getting better in description. I like the leader personality you gave to Daedalus and I hope you stick with it.

    One problem, though...



    GREATLY contradicts with...



    and...



    That's a pretty amazing feat. It'd take me about 15 minutes (probably more) to walk that distance. There are a few other thing that don't fit with the whole "size of a football field thing". You may want to change that...

    Can't wait until the next update!
    Like I said before, I'm not very good with size perception, xD

    Thanks for reviewing Glajummy.
    Claimed: Grovyle - November 10th, 2013
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    Pre chapter authors notes.

    A few things.
    -It's not exactly a happy chapter.
    -It's from Treecko's POV
    I did not put the "<___>" aroung Treecko's thoughts because I thought it would take away from it...but I still italicized the thoughts.


    The Breaking Point

    We, the gang of four, started to walk up the hill, away from the river where we… I defeated Daggerback, and back onto the pathways. Jeff and I stood at opposite ends of the line; he was at the front and I was in the back. The apprehension was still hot between us. The midnight bode a soothing wind.

    I saw Daedalus poke Corphish on the shell and he whispered something inaudible to him.

    “<Hey, Corppy, do you feel a tension here?>”

    “<Yeah I do. I think that Nidoking dislocated a portion of my shell,>” Corphish whispered back.

    “<No, I mean between Jeff and Treecko, ever since I made that plan they’ve been pretty p*ssed at each other.>”

    I didn’t know or care what those two were talking about, but I could only assume it was about me. I shot a bright green, seed-shaped projectile from behind Daedalus and hit my target, Jeff, in the back. Jeff cried out and whirled around glaring at me. I grinned rebelliously and shifted the twig in my mouth as if nothing happened. Daedalus decided to cover for me, for reasons which fail me, and told him, “<It was a bug.>”

    Jeff turned around, grumbling. Corphish looked at me. “<You know, I really don’t see it!>” Corphish whispered back to Taillow, sarcastically. “<Actually, ever since the Petalburg incident, Jeff has been more irritable; he has been giving Treeck an especially hard time.>”

    “<The... ‘Petalburg incident’?>”

    “<Yeah, before we got to Petalburg Forest, we were traveling with a human girl, who Jeff had a huge crush on. When we got to Petalburg City Jeff met his most FAVORITE of best friends. Although Jeff beat him in a battle, the girl went for Jeff’s rival. His heart was broken and here we are!>”

    “<But why does he go off on Treecko?>”

    “<I think they’re both having bad days.>”

    They finished what ever it was that they were talking about when Jeff turned around and asked, “What are you two whispering about back there?”

    “<Oh, we were seeing how low we could talk without being heard…you lose, Featherhead!>” Corphish answered, turning to Daedalus.

    We reentered the dark Petalburg Forest. Mist encased the trunks of the trees as well as the underbrush, creating an eerie feeling in the darkness.

    “Dae, get up here! You’re on point!” Jeff called behind him. “You know these woods like the back of your hand…claw…wing? Don’t you?”

    Daedalus chirped and flew up on top of Jeff’s head. Daedalus outstretched his wing, pointing to the quickest route out of here, like a compass. Jeff followed the direction of the dark blue wing until he would shift it, pointing to another direction, in which case Jeff would change directions.

    “It’s a good thing we have Daedalus here as a guide,” Jeff stated aloud.

    “<Yeah, otherwise you’d never get out of here alone,>” I mocked him, half kidding and half annoyed from earlier.

    “Watch it, PAL, unless you want me to set you up with a lifetime contract as a mascot for a car insurance dealership,” Jeff retorted with seriousness.

    A silence ensued as everyone kept to themselves.

    “<We’re about at the halfway point. I say we should take a break, we’re all pretty beat,>” Daedalus suggested.

    “Yeah, ok, good idea,” responded Jeff, sitting against a poplar tree with Taillow still on his head.

    Corphish lay down near Jeff and I leaned against a medium sized tree trunk of a large oak, a couple yards away from them.

    After a long silence, Daedalus piped up and asked morosely, “<Hey… Jeff? Do you mind if I… say goodbye to my friends? They’re probably worried about me… and I have to break it to them that I’m not going to be leading them anymore.>”

    I carefully inspected Jeff’s face. I could see a large weight sunk in Jeff’s heart as a revelation struck him. He had probably realized that he had taken these pokemon away from their homes to fight for him. He had already had a rough time feeling comfortable with us battling for him… he didn’t even THINK about the fact that we had past lives before he came along. By his long pause I guessed that he became very disgusted with himself.

    “<…Jeff?>”

    Jeff awoke from his deep trance and answered with empathy, “Oh…yeah of course, Daedalus.” He went back to his thoughts.

    Daedalus flapped his wings to try and take off from Jeff’s head. He got airborne but found himself being held back by something. Daedalus’ sharp talons were tangled in Jeff’s dense, dark brown hair.

    “<Erg, Jeff my feet are stuck!>” Daedalus informed him, trying to fly with all of his might out.

    “Ow, ow, OW! I’ve noticed, Daedalus,” Jeff groaned while his hair was pulled.

    “<Hey, Corppy, wanna give us a hand?>” Daedalus chirped in irritation.

    “<Hah! And miss this? Yeah, OKAY!>” Corphish laughed, mocking the situation.

    “Damn it, Corphish,” Jeff growled. Daedalus began pecking at the roots of Jeff’s hairs to try and cut them, but his feet were tangled in too well.

    “<Jeff, why don’t you ask Treecko for help?>” the Taillow trilled in question, flapping frantically.

    “I don’t think so, we don’t need his –ow- help, just keep –ow- trying!” he adamantly replied, not realizing that his voice carried in the forest.

    I turned my eyes towards them. Their eyes met with mine. I pretended that I was unaltered by the words, but really, the words sunk pretty deeply. I know Jeff was stubborn but he should know that I’d be always willing to help him. I let the words slide off my back as much as I could. I closely eyed the twig that was resting in my mouth. I took it out and inspected it before closing my eyes. What was wrong with Jeff? How can a girl change someone so much? I want him to be like he was when we first met… when he actually seemed to enjoy my company. When will he be normal?

    I thought about when we were traveling from Littleroot to Petalburg. Those were awesome but that damned city changed it. I let out a sharp grunt from my nostrils and turned my eyes back.

    “<Could you talk any louder?>” Corphish whispered to Jeff.

    Daedalus gave a nod to me, in indication to help them. I responded with a disagreeing shake of the head. He pressed his wings together in a pleading manner. I turned away, uninterested.

    “<Corphish, get over here!>” Daedalus chirped. Corphish scuttled up onto Jeff’s right shoulder. The Taillow continued to quietly peep instructions, “<Put one of your legs in Jeff’s ear so he won’t hear us.>”

    “<Ew, no! I don’t know where that ear has been!>” Corphish complained.

    “<Oh just do it, you yellow-belly!>” Daedalus coerced, irritated.

    “<Fine, but I’ll have you know that my underbelly is a very pretty, pale, ‘yellow mist’ color, thank you very much!>” Corphish scoffed, putting an orange leg in Jeff’s ear.

    “Hey, Corphish, get your foot out of my ear!” Jeff told him.

    “<Sorry, I thought your earlobe was a shoe horn,>” Corphish replied, keeping his foot in there. Then he ordered, “<Quick, Featherhead, say what you’re going to say!>”

    “<Go over to Treecko and tell him to help us and say I’ll give him my next meal in return.>”

    “Corphish, if your foot gets stuck in there too…”

    I briefly glanced over to watch the ridiculous antics of Corphish and Daedalus. Normally I might have been slightly amused by this scene… but not now. I was too busy thinking about how Jeff changed and what I could do to get him back to normal. I shut my eyes again. I felt a familiar sensation in my tail.

    It’s going to rain soon.

    My tail always did that. Whenever it was about to rain I got that preemptive feeling. It was both a blessing and a curse. I was able to prepare for the upcoming weather but the anticipation for the rain dampened my spirits before the actual showers could dampen my twig.

    “<Fine,>” Corphish said before being picked up and placed on the ground by Jeff. Corphish heard the unmistakable scuttle of Corphish coming towards me, I had my eyes closed. I didn’t bother listening to the two pokemon’s conversation.

    “<Hey Gr…>” Corphish began to greet me. I immediately shot open my eyes and gave him a glare that chilled Corphish to his soul. He knew not to ever call me that and I wasn’t going to let him forget it. Corphish, who now feared for his life, hastily corrected himself. “<…eecko. Grieco. Richard Grieco was great in 21 Jump Street, wasn’t he?>” he said in a very unsmooth manner.

    “<What do you want, Corphish?>” I asked him, exasperated.

    “<Can you please help Daedalus out of Jeff’s hair; he says he’ll give you his next meal.>”

    “<Why should I?>” I sassily responded.

    Corphish blinked twice “<…for the reason I JUST told you.>” Annoyed, I closed my eyes and continued to chew on my twig. Corphish began to walk back to Daedalus and Jeff. He stopped upon my words, “<Fine.>” Before he knew it, he felt my green tail hit him in the back. Corphish went flying towards Daedalus. He hit the bird pokemon and the scalp of Jeff’s head. The Taillow went sailing out of Jeff’s hair, taking several strands of hair with him. Corphish landed upside down, Jeff was knocked over, but Daedalus managed to recover from the hit in the air and remain airborne.

    “<Thanks, T-cko,>” Daedalus called, before flying off to say farewell to his friends.

    “ARGH, DAMNIT!” Jeff shouted, holding his aching head.

    Corphish looked up at Jeff with an innocent face before glaring at me. I let out a snort with a smug grin.

    Jeff scowled at me. I knew this smug grin p*ssed him off to no end. I could tell that he wanted to drive his knee into my head, but he always forgave it. It was frustratingly cool AND lovable.

    The pain had set off Jeff’s last nerve. Jeff countered the pain with a sharp yell, “What the hell was that, Treecko?!”

    “<What? They said ‘free Daedalus’ so I did,>” I replied, hiding a malicious smile.

    “You didn’t have to hit Corphish into us!”

    “<Well apparently I did!>”

    “That’s it, Treecko! I respect your love of independence and your loner tendencies, but this is ridiculous! You have to draw the line somewhere; you can’t go around doing WHATEVER you want!”

    “<And why not? Don’t we all have a right to? I mean, you can go around catching us pokemon on a whim! We’re entitled to at least some freedom or else we’d might as well be caged animals!>” I shot back in a way that I knew would burden his conscience.

    I watched as those words hit Jeff’s already heavy guilt, hard. He began to speak in a quieter, more empathetic tone. “I see what you’re saying Treecko, but just tone it down a little, please?”

    “<Maybe, maybe not,>” I replied. I was now being difficult purely for the sake of being difficult. I really shouldn’t have been but I had to prove my point.

    “Treecko…when I lose my patience…my hand tends to reach for one of my empty pokeballs, and when I get one of those in my hand I automatically point it at the nearest pokemon…” Jeff explained in a soft, but threatening, tone.

    A chill went up my spine. Was he serious? He wouldn’t do that after all of this… would he? “<You wouldn’t!>” I answered with a hurt scowl.

    He knows how much I hate that damned prison, to even BLUFF using that is too far! As long as the thing remained in his hands the chills remained to go through my body.

    Jeff nodded, strongly, and enlarged the red and white pokeball, not daring to show weakness in what I initially thought was his bluff.

    I retorted with fervor, “<You can confine me to that pokeball…but that would make you a hypocrite and a liar. You’d also have to face the lonesome road, without your beloved Kristie, who is probably asleep next to Alan right now, so I hope you’re ready to fayeayeay...>” I then trailed off. Before I could finish the word “face”, I had realized what I had been saying.

    Man, I’m an idiot…

    The Kristie incident was still fresh in his mind and I tossed it about as if were a pinecone. I studied Jeff’s appalled and betrayed expression. I knew that I had crossed the line.

    Meanwhile, Corphish was shifting in his spot, frantically jutting his head between the two arguers, uncomfortably. “<Oh… my… Arceus! I think there’s a Golem crushing me because I couldn’t be any more stuck between a rock and a hard place!>”

    I really didn’t mean to say that.

    I walked apologetically towards him. I stumbled backwards in shock when he lightly smacked me up the side of my twig-loving head. It was just hard enought to get the point across. I withstood the anger-induced blow and bit my lip. I saw his hand shaking while he retracted it. My mouth was left hanging open while I fingered the red hand mark.

    Did he just… hit me?

    Although I was mentally hurt by the action, I knew I deserved it and more. But still… he HIT me. JEFF hit me. Tears began to fill my eyes but none made it past the ducts… I wouldn’t let them. With a new sense of fear I backed away from him. I looked at Corphish who didn’t even make a joke to break the tension; all he did was stare in shock. I jutted my head around.

    What should I do?

    Should I run? Run away from the situation and come back when things have cooled?

    Should I approach Jeff? What if he struck me again?

    Should I retaliate? I couldn’t do that. Not even if I wanted to.

    Would he apologize? Did he feel bad about hitting me? Would he do it again? Did he still value me as a friend?


    I held my reddened face and turned around, trying to collect myself.

    I took a hard swallow and turned back around. I would do my first line of defense. If this didn’t work… then I don’t know what’s next. My usually calm words shook as I spoke in an unthreatening way. “<Jeff…look, I’m…>” I attempted to apologize, but he cut me off.

    “No! You’re right!” he retorted.

    I almost flinched; worried that he’d strike me again. My heart was racing and my feelings were almost pouring out of my throat.

    “You were right about Daedalus’ plan, you were right about Kristie, you’re right about being alone! So you made your point. Now go bugger off you stubborn, little, smug reptile! Go be…free!” he said with frustration. Jeff turned away from us and lay sideways on the forest bed.

    It was like I had been kicked in the teeth. I stood there, devastated. Did he really want me gone? I think the slap confirmed that. I walked towards him a step but then stopped. My face scrunched when I turned defiantly towards the forest.

    I knew this journey was too good to be true.

    I didn’t want to lose a friend over me being as stubborn as a Tauros… as well as acting like an overall prick. I walked six feet into the forest and slumped sadly behind a tree. I’d might as well go to sleep. Maybe this would blow over later.

    For lack of anybody else, I tightly squeezed my tail for warmth. Thoughts burdened my brain and heart as I went to sleep.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Screams.

    I opened my eyes to hear screams and battle yells coming from below me, all around. I looked upwards; I could only look upwards. I saw the dizzying trunk of a massive tree tower, as if a ladder to the moon and stars. Large, lush branches jutted out from the trunk, making an immense canopy.

    I couldn’t move; it was as if I was tied to the branch I was on. I could see fellow Treeckos jumping down on branches and crawling on all fours towards and past me, as if I wasn’t there. Below I could hear the yells of humans and Treeckos alike. Preceding the cries of my brethren was an electrostatic zap, while the familiar thumps of our tails and the slices of blades came before the human’s yells.

    Out of the corner of my eye I could see a bright orange gleam in the night. I tried to move but still couldn’t.

    “<They’ve got the head Sceptile!>” I heard the sharp cry of a Grovyle yell.

    I took notice of the raspy, nasally cry of a Sceptile, although I could not see him, “<Velox! You’re in charge! You and the rest defend that tree with your lives! Don’t let these filthy brutes take our home!>” The voice called as it slowly got farther away. The Grovyle let out a massive, frustrated howl and the cries of humans became more frequent.

    This all seemed so familiar. I needed to help them.

    I could see smoke rise from beneath me. I could see the fire grow higher. I struggled to move. I cringed and tried to call out while the heat from the burning element numbed my skin. It was torturous. I felt as if I should dead any second, but it just didn’t come fast enough. I squirmed in my place when I knew the bottom of the branch I was on began to burn. Sweat dropped from my body. I knew the fire would touch me at any second.

    Why wasn’t anyone helping me?

    It was like the walls of a room were closing in on a pokemon with claustrophobia. The anticipation wrenched my insides around until what was left must have only been a jumble of organs tied together like a ball of yarn.

    I had to get out of here. Something was going to happen…I could feel it.

    I heard a familiar, deep, human’s voice. “But why are you helping me? You don't know me!”

    Where have I heard that before? The voice continued, but in a different tone as if it was said at a different occasion. “You didn’t have to find me to give this back! I was perfectly capable…”

    The voice became faster and more frequent in its intervals.

    “Ok, so now the poison will only eat away at my leg.”

    “If you’re as stubborn as I am, we’re going to be in big trouble.”

    The voice became more rapid, harsher, and it boomed from all around me.

    “All that time I waited for you and you just let yourself be captured?”

    “Damnit, Treecko, stop it! It’s over!”

    “Oh sure, laugh it up.”

    “Ok…we’ll go your way.”

    “Tell that to yourself when you’re surrounded by a group of fire type pokemon.”

    “You say that because you’re the only one of your species in this general area! You don’t have to compete for women! You probably take and leave as you please...like Alan would.”

    “Now I see what Professor Birch means with his stubbornness and independence.”

    “Oh, shut up.”

    The voices engulfed me and repeated themselves with overwhelming tempo, gradually getting louder.

    They stopped.

    The last thing said was a booming sentence. “Now go bugger off you stubborn, little, smug reptile! Go be…free!”

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    My eyes shot open. I felt either dried tears or perhaps dew crusted on the corners of my eyes. Chances were that it was the former option.

    Jeff had woken me up with a soft nudge. I must have shifted several feet away from where I fell asleep, in my sleep. Jeff looked at me with sympathetic eyes. He must have known that I had a rough sleep so he decided to spare me the nightmare.

    I have to get out of here.

    I looked upwards and saw a different tree. The darkness of the sky competed with the coming sunrise. Right now the darkness was still winning as everything was still black. I got to my feet and walked over to Jeff and the sleeping Corphish. It had seemed that Taillow was still gone. If he was ever coming back was beyond me. Jeff was crouched over a small fire, boiling an insta-heat cup of noodles. He didn’t acknowledge me; he had the white vines of a white, music emitting device in his ear. I lightly pulled the things out of his ear. The sad sounding song from the earphones began to play loudly on the ground; I had no idea how to stop them so I continued saying what I was trying to say.

    “<…Jeff? I need to talk to you,>” I said with remorseful quietness.

    He remained silent, facing away from me.

    “<Jeff, please hear me out…>” I continued, talking over the song.

    All he did was lower his head and prod at the scorching coals of the fire.

    I backed away from him and sighed. The clouds smothered over the pink sunrise. A light shower began to pour. The dispersed rain droplets hit around our campsite.

    I’m sorry.

    This is it.

    I tried to move around Corphish, but I accidentally kicked one of his pincers. He woke up with a jolt.

    “<Is it time for Baywatch?!>” he yelled in a nonsensical manner. He looked around and sighed, “<Oh… what are you doing, T-Cko?>”

    “<I’m leaving,>” I replied, firmly.

    “<Shouldn’t I at least call our divorce lawyer first?>”

    Not amused, I began to turn to walk into the dark forest. I looked back at Jeff. Jeff turned an eye to the action.

    I had screwed up.

    “You’re leaving? But…but…” Jeff stammered.

    “<You did tell me to leave, didn’t you?>”

    Jeff was at a loss for words. Rain became more frequent and the drops bigger.

    “I can’t understand…” he replied in pure shock.

    “<I’ll be fine. You don’t deserve the pain that I was inflicting upon you. I’m sorry… goodbye, Jeff.>”

    “I don’t know what you’re saying!” he tried to explain, beginning to panic.

    “<YOU DID TELL ME TO… >” I attempted to reiterate.

    Obviously picking up on the fact that I was reiterating my earlier words, he yelled in frustration, “I MEAN I DON’T UNDERSTAND YOU! ALL I HEAR IS TREE CKO CKO TREE TREECKO!” He collapsed to his knees and held his forehead in what must have been head splitting frustration.

    I could see what was the remainder of Jeff’s soul shatter.

    My jaw dropped.

    …He can’t hear me? But why?! I wasn’t saying anything complex! Was it because I…

    I stared in shock at my former pal. I wanted to go and comfort him… try to help him… be with him… but I could already feel my legs running in the other direction.

    Why did you do that? Because he hit you. He told you to leave!

    I couldn’t handle what I had just put my friend through, so I ran.

    Just keep running.

    “<Wait, T-cko! Come back! Treecko!>” Corphish began to run after me.

    I could also hear the heavy steps of Jeff.

    “<Treecko, please! Come back!>”

    Don’t look back.

    I couldn’t let myself look back even if I wanted to. The unmistakable pounding of Jeff’s feet in the grass grew louder and closer. Corphish lagged far behind. Jeff was running along right beside me. He leapt over a large root protruding from the forest bed. He let out a pained grown before falling flat on his face; he had been running so fast to keep up with me that the speed that he fell with gave him no time to brace the impact. He went from standing to prone in a matter of seconds. I stopped running and slowly neared my friend. He was sprawled on his stomach so that his face was buried in his arms and moss. I noticed that his shoe was one meter behind him. His sock was soaked with ruby blood. In the center of the fresh blood was a golden badge; the sharp chevron of the award was lodged in and jutting out his right foot. The badge, shining in the moonlight, dug deep into his sole… but I think that it was the least of his worries.

    Should I help him? Does he want my help? Is he ok?

    I ran. Like a coward I ran from my friend. I ran and hid behind a tree many meters away. I looked back at Jeff, who still had his face buried in his arms. I watched Jeff, who lay there in his sorrow, probably wondering ‘where did it all go wrong?’.

    You’re pathetic, Treecko. You’re no friend of Jeff. You don’t deserve to have friends.

    I tightly shut my eyes and stayed pressed against a tree. I used my eyelids as a dam for all the emotions that were building up inside. Corphish had caught up to Jeff and began to inspect him.

    “<Jeff? Jeff?>”

    I turned and saw a tear glint in Jeff’s darkened head. It was the only thing I could see from his shadow covered face.

    The guilt and sadness that flooded me grew unbearable.

    I watched the twig drop from his mouth to the ground, followed by a tear. A gust of wind blew through the forest. Corphish tried to encourage Jeff and ask where I went but Jeff either ignored or couldn’t comprehend him. He was lost in his own thoughts, unable to get out. Corphish walked away from Jeff to continue to follow me.

    You’re leaving Jeff all alone. Abandoned.

    Nothing you can say can change it. Because of you nothing would be the same.

    Nothing.

    You destroyed him.


    Watching Jeff made my eyes begin to water. It was my fault that he was like this. That guilt and anger at myself created a massive ball that swelled in my head like a tumor. Why? Why did I have to be so stubborn?

    Come on! Are you a Chikorita or are you a Treecko?! So calm down! Calm…Calm. Besides he’s a just a human. Why are you so sad about leaving a filthy, two faced, evil human?! They’re all alike. You’ve seen it before!

    Never. Never in my life had I cried. I wasn’t about to let myself breakdown now. My vision of him on the ground began to distort and blur. I tried to swallow the lump in my throat but I found myself choking on it, gasping for air and words. I never thought that withholding emotions would ever have to be this hard. I wanted to call out to him but I knew the action would be futile.

    I began to run again. Corphish spotted me and raced to follow.

    “<Treeck! Come back here… NOW!>”

    I continued to run. I jumped aptly over roots and ducked under branches. I refused to look back, as I would only remember what it was that I was leaving behind.

    Why I ran I didn’t even know anymore. All that I knew was that I couldn’t go back. Corphish closely followed me, I could tell by the rapid sounds of legs on the ground.

    Go back, pal. Don’t do what I did.

    “<You’d better slow down, you b*stard! You can’t just leave!>”

    I couldn’t even speak to defend myself; all I did was continue to dash.

    I knew I was far ahead of Corppy. He would hold this against me, but that was the least of my worries.

    All of a sudden I could feel wet, ball-like projectiles hit the back of my legs; the orbs exploded and threw me into a roll. I spiraled onto the ground.

    I rolled over to get up but Corphish jumped on my chest. My jaw seared with pain when I felt his damp claw smash across my face. On the side of my face that was forced in the mud, I could feel a tear try to escape my eye. I quickly blinked it back.

    You’re right Corphish; I’m not holding this against you. I shouldn’t leave. But I have to.

    “<Corphish, I…>”

    THUD THUD.

    Corphish brought his claws against my face two more times. My head was driven further into the mud. Although the rain fell hard on my face, I knew that two tears had poured from my eyes. I quickly shut my eyes and clenched my teeth.

    Weak.

    Yellow-belly.

    Pathetic.

    A disgrace.


    Those tears were not from the pain or the fact that Corphish was hitting me. They were from the fact that I knew I was doing the wrong thing, I was leaving Jeff because after all that I did I couldn’t go back. I was running from my problems and leaving my best friend by himself. I allowed for three seconds of weakness.

    I stared at the twig in my mouth and subconsciously allowed two more tears to flow from my eyes. Keeping my eyes shut, I growled and continued to stick my finger in the hole of the leaking dam. If I let this trickle of emotions to continue, the dam would explode, and I would be engulfed... never to resurface to normalcy.

    “<What the hell do you think you’re doing?>” Corphish yelled at me, rain dripping off his shell and onto my face. He clamped his claws on my shoulder, keeping my head in the muddy ground.

    “<I… I’m leaving,>” I explained.

    “<You can’t leave; we both know it! So swallow your pride, Kristie!>”

    “<What?!>”

    “<Yeah that's right, you stubborn wood gecko, you’re no better than her! Right now you’re the most important thing to him and you’re about to take that away with one action!>”

    The words had hit hard, but I knew he was right.

    “<I’m worse than her; she didn’t even know that Jeff liked her, but I know that we are… were best friends. I can’t go back after what happened.>”

    “<Yes you can! GO BACK YOU COWARD… or are your tails too far between your legs to do so!?>”

    “<I CAN’T!>” I yelled, shoving him off of me. His claws tore the flesh on my shoulders as he was pushed off. I began to run away from Corphish again.

    He didn’t have any idea how hard this was… but it was something I had to do…for Jeff’s sake. The reasons clouded my head like an electrical storm, zapping all light and clouding good judgment.

    I tore the twig from my mouth and placed the mouthpiece in the mud covered ground; it stuck upwards like a beacon. I stared at the accessory that I carried with me for years. I remembered the day I had taken it… and every day up to today. Every argument, every laugh, and every moment. One final tear escaped my guard, although my face remained unaltered and serious. It trickled off of my nose and landed beside the twig. Corphish began to catch up with me so I ran off. And with the twig, I left my heart and soul with it.

    Emptiness… more empty than I had previously felt. When the leak in the dam stopped, so did the river which flowed. It was barren.

    I have to get out of here.


    ---------------------------------------

    Daedalus soared in the cool breeze, pivoting around trees. The rain drops hit his feathers and rolled off. He didn’t seem to mind the rain so much as the his mission. He took a hard left and landed in a large oak canopy. Five Taillows swarmed onto the branches around him, creating a circle.

    “<Daedalus? Is it really you?!>” one of the Taillows chirped in excitement.

    “<We were sure that damned human had you!>” trilled another.

    Daedalus cleared his throat before replying. “<Yes, Gallus, it’s really me,>” he replied in a forced smile through his sadness. His grin faded before his next words. “<The human… Jeff… DID get me, Ornithos. That’s why I’m here.>”

    This statement caused a storm of chirps to be unleashed.

    “<Please! Please settle down!>”

    “<You’re not actually going! You’re here to hide, right?!>” the Taillow named Gallus squawked in hope and denial.

    Daedalus looked guiltily down at his claws. Rain dripped off his head and slid down to his beak. The face said it all.

    “<I’m sorry.>”

    “<But you can’t leave! You’re our best friend and the only one who knows what the hell to do!>” another Taillow tweeted in protest.

    “<What if the Spearows come back?!>” asked Ornithos.

    “<Struthios will make a great leader in my place! You guys are all tough… you can fight them off with no problem. I’ve seen you do it before. You were all brave and we came out triumphant… thanks to looking out for one another…>” Daedalus encouraged, but his voice began to be interrupted by tears. Fortunately the rain also washed away his tears but still he turned his head away.

    “<Besides, I promise I’ll come back whenever I can. The human I’m with is actually very nice and he lets us do whatever we want; he’s not controlling and doesn’t make us battle until we drop. I can assure that if I wanted to come back to visit, he’d let me and he’d probably come, too! I’m sure he’d want to meet all of you!>” Daedalus reassured through his tears.

    Sadness filled the tree canopy. The rain seemed to pour heavier on them.

    “<I wish you didn’t have to go,>” quietly chirped Struthios.

    “<Don’t be afraid, I’ll return. If the Spearows overrun you or if you guys want company… come and find us. We won’t be far.>”

    “<Goodbye, Daedalus. You’ll always be the best leader we’ve ever had.>”

    They all exchanged in a large final embrace before Daedalus turned his back to them.

    “<I’ll be back…>” Daedalus quietly whispered. Daedalus flapped his wings and jumped from the large branch. He began to fly away into the rain.

    “<Ok, boys!>” ordered Struthios. The five Taillows put their wings to their foreheads in a salute and, in unison, chirped, “TAAIIIILLLOOOW.”

    Daedalus looked back at the final salute while flying, tears leaving his eyes and streaming in the wind. He left his friends behind him.

    “<I promise… I’ll be back.>”

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Corphish panted to keep up with me, the long-legged wood gecko. All of a sudden, I stopped dead in my tracks. A faint flap of wings was heard. It became louder. I guessed that it was Daedalus coming back from his friends. Only the red and white of Daedalus’ chest could be seen moving in the rainy, night sky. The red and white stopped moving and sat on a branch above us.

    “<Corppy? T-cko? What’s going on? I got back to where we set up camp; you two were gone and Jeff wasn’t talking! He seemed really torn up about something,>” chirped Daedalus in an accusing manner.

    “<I’m leaving!>” I replied.

    “<What?>” he trilled in disbelief.

    “<Treeck and Jeff had a bit of a disagreement. Some words were exchanged and some lovable Corphishes were made very uncomfortable. Now T-cko here wants to pack up his tail and leave!>”

    “<That’s ridiculous, Treecko! You can’t just leave us over one argument! It couldn’t have been that bad!>” Daedalus insisted.

    I gave him a look. “<Last night he told me to leave. And, today, when I told him I was leaving… something happened to him… he can't understand us anymore...>”

    “<Ok, so he was PMSing, everyone has bad days! It happens!>”

    “<I’m going. It’s best that I respect at least ONE of his commands,>” I muttered, heavy heartedly.

    “<If you aren’t going to stay for Jeff, at least stay… for the kids!>” coerced Corphish. He put on a sad face, and placed his claw around Daedalus’ shoulder.

    I put on a solemn grin, closed my eyes, and shook my head.

    “<Tell Jeff…I’m sorry,>” I told them, when I pushed by them they both looked at each other and nodded.

    “<If you’re leaving, I’m leaving!>” Corphish blurted, walking to my side.

    “<I’m not staying here alone with him! No offense to Jeff.>”

    “<What? You guys can’t leave!>”

    “<And why not?! You get to!>” Daedalus had a point there.

    “<If you leave, Jeff is going to be there all alone, and especially after that Kristie incident. That will be overwhelming for him. Who knows what he might do?>” Corphish added.

    “<You two take care of him!>”

    “<Look, Treeck!>" Corphish began, "<You were there from the start! You were his first pokemon, his first friend on this travel. You were always there for him. You battled for him. You bled for him. He bled for you! You were there when Kristie broke his heart. Afterwards you were the one who tried to pick up the pieces. We STILL need you to pick up the pieces. HE needs you. You and we all know that he doesn’t want you gone.>”

    Daedalus looked shocked at Corphish’s strong words. He decided to follow up. “<As much as you think you can’t go back, you CAN! We all can have fresh starts. Just explain the situation to him and I know he’ll understand. In fact, when you go back he’ll be so happy to see you; you probably won’t even need to talk to him! So come back with us!>”

    “<I CAN’T!>” I roared in defiance.

    It wasn’t that simple! I couldn’t just go back and act like nothing happened!

    “<Why? Why can’t you go back when you have every reason to?! Is it that you don’t want to go back with your tail between your legs? Or do you WANT to be alone?!>” coerced Daedalus.

    “<Well I… yes... I DO want to be alone! Jeff slapped me for Arceus’ sakes! I know I deserved it, but I still can’t believe he actually went through with it! I mean, he hit ME, his best friend and first pokemon! I don’t even think he feels bad about it!>”

    “<Look, he was angry! It was an impulse! Of course he feels bad about it!>” the two pokemon chimed in together.

    “<It’s not that he hurt me… well it’s not that I was hurt. It IS that HE hurt me. But, it’s also that he scolded me with the strike… you just don’t… I don’t know!>” I tried to explain my point of view in a volley of clumsy stammers.

    “<Just come back with us!>” Daedalus pleaded.

    I sighed and looked off into the dawn through the beautiful, lush trees. “<… I can’t face him.>”

    Corphish was becoming annoyed. “<Look, Treeck! We can either do this the easy way or the hard way!>”

    They just weren’t listening!

    I shot him a glare. “<… Do it the hard way.>”

    With those words, I started to try to run, but found myself pinned on the ground in seconds flat. I tried to struggle to get free, but Corphish had clamped down on my tail and Daedalus had wrapped his talons around my hands.

    “<Now we’re going home whether you like it or not!>”

    Corphish led the way back. Daedalus had lifted me off the ground; my hands were still in his talons. Corphish still clamped my tail, making sure I didn’t try anything else. Unable to do anything, I felt ridiculous. I tried to wiggle my hands free from the claws but it was pointless. Although he had trouble flying my weight, Daedalus had excellent grip and he wasn’t about to let go.

    Why don’t I just do things the easy way? Why must it always be the hard way?

    We could see the smoke from the campfire. Jeff was in a squatting position, looking into the burning coals of the fire. Before Jeff knew we were behind him and that I was being forced against my will to come back, Daedalus released me from his hold, dropping me to the ground. Corphish was still skeptical of freeing me, but he did so with a whisper. “<Try anything… and next time I’ll clamp your big head instead…>” He made a snapping motion with his claws. I shot him a cold look and began to near the sulking human.

    I approached Jeff and crawled onto his shoulder, just to show that I wasn’t completely angry at him. He looked up with a sleep deprived face and nodded. “Hi, Treecko.”

    I walked up to him and placed a hand on his back. I said, “<Hi Jeff,>” but I could see in his eyes that all he heard was pokespeech. Dismayed, I just patted his back.

    “I’ve been doing a lot of thinking… I still can’t understand you… or what you’re saying, but you can understand me.”

    Corphish and Daedalus gathered around, also. Jeff let out a deep sigh and closed his eyes. “I’ve been thinking a lot about what you and Taillow said; about being taken away from those who you care about to travel and fight; when I don’t even do the fighting myself. It’s unfair to you guys and it makes me seem like I have superiority over you. I’m not better than you guys! I want to make it clear that I value each of you as equal to me; I mean you’re all intelligent creatures, capable of feelings and speech! Well now the bounds are off; Daedalus, you can go back and lead your friends. Corphish, you can go back to your lake and woo female Corphish with your… dancing. And Treecko, pal, you can go back to your tree. None of you should feel pressured to be here. I thank all of you for sticking around as long as you have,” he exclaimed with a shaky sadness.

    We were all shocked by the offer. Corphish broke the long pause with a joke. “<Why would I go back there when I could get rejected by new and different Corphish? At least then it would not be as awkward as it would if I had to ask the same girls, again.>”

    Jeff looked at Corphish. I think he got the gist from the light-heartedness that Corphish was saying that he was staying.

    The Taillow was currently fence sitting. The indecision tore at him. He finally gave a definite chirp. “<I appreciate the offer, Jeff, but I think I’ll stay with you.>”

    Jeff blinked, unsure what he had said. Only time would tell him.

    Jeff was silent for a minute and then looked at me. Our eyes locked as we tried to read what the other was thinking. The deep exchange lasted many moments. Both of us waited for the other to say something, since my answer depended on what Jeff said, but I didn’t know what he was waiting for. Jeff gulped and broke the silence, “What about you, Treecko? Do you want to stick around or do you want to take the lone road?” Jeff subconsciously stopped breathing while he nervously awaited my answer.

    A small wave of optimistic relief hit me. Still, something ate away at me. I breathed a sigh and answered, “<Jeff…you couldn’t pry me away from here if you tried. Besides, what’s the point of being alone if you’re by yourself?>”

    To reiterate that I was staying, I playfully punched and proceeded to hug his head. Something that I was sure I would never do again. Daedalus and Corphish joined in the hug.

    He beamed and hugged us tightly back. I felt two drops of water hit my shoulder. I wasn’t sure if they were his tears or rain… but I was sheltered from the rain.

    “You guys are great friends, you know that?” The other two grinned modestly, while I nodded and placed my slender arms behind my head.

    “<I’d hate to break this up, but what do you say we get moving?>” Daedalus told us. Jeff got to his feet with me still on his shoulder. I jumped back onto the ground. I felt like things still weren’t right between Jeff and me. I had a feeling he felt the same way.

    “But what about your flock, Daedalus?” Jeff asked morosely, not expecting a response he could comprehend.

    “<I’ve got a new flock now…>” he replied in profound thought. After staring off for awhile, he shook his head and continued to talk. “<Right-o, Jeff, I’m going to talk to my flock one last time. I’ll meet you on the outside of Petalburg Forest!>” The Taillow twittered before flying into the dawn sky.

    “<Hey Daedalus? I need a favor… which I’ll return someday… in fact you can have the next meal you offered to me back,>” I explained with a hint of guilt in my voice.

    “<Sure, T-Cko, what is it?>”

    “<I need you to go get my…>” I told him but was interrupted by a human’s words which struck worry into my stomach.

    “Treecko… what happened to your twig?”

    As calmly as I could I made gestures saying that I was running and then I fell and it must have fell out. “Treecko cko tree tree?” I asked, motioning for Corphish to agree with me. Corppy quickly nodded. Daedalus nodded at me, knowing what I was going to ask, and took to the air. We watched the tiny swallow pokemon fly off. Jeff looked at us frantically.

    “What’s going on?! Where’s he going?! Is Daedalus leaving?!” Jeff grilled, wide eyed.

    Corppy looked at him and shuck his head, confirming, “<No.>” Corphish pointed at me, placed a crude stick in his mouth, and then pointed at Daedalus, who was getting further and further away.

    In relief, with Corphish now on his backpack and me walking behind him, Jeff began to walk through the forest in the direction that Daedalus had previously pointed him towards.

    I was relieved that he was willing to take me back. I didn’t show any of my emotions though; he knew how I felt so I’m not going to show it in a public display of affection! … Or did he know how I felt?! He still couldn’t understand me! Was that permanent?! What if he thinks I’m still angry? Well I kind of am… but still! DOES he want me back or does he just feel obliged to take me along?

    As those thoughts raced through my apathetic mind, we walked through the dimly-lit forest of Petalburg. I watched branches shift over head and thought. I thought about that dream I had. I thought about how I almost threw all of this away. I thought about what I was leaving behind. I thought about the risk that I was taking. Most importantly, I thought about whether or not to stay.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    ...continued in next post.
    Last edited by Griff4815; 16th February 2009 at 12:12 AM.
    Claimed: Grovyle - November 10th, 2013
    Chapter 18 is up.

  23. #73
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    ...Continued
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Daedalus rocketed around trees, flying as fast as he could. He flew through the forest and began to circle around the area where he had met up with Treecko and Corphish. He landed on the earth and examined the terrain.

    “<Hmm, tracks are leading from that direction… it’s probably around there. How am I supposed to find a single twig in the whole bloody forest?>”

    The Taillow began to walk and he closely scanned the ground.

    “<Most of all of the twigs have been washed away in the storm!>” He continued to follow the water flooded footprints and drag marks. Up ahead, he saw a twig jutting straight out of the ground. It had the same straight main stem with a second, smaller branch coming out of the middle, diagonally. Daedalus went to inspect it closer. There was dried, brown blood encrusted on the part where Treecko’s mouth would go.

    “<Taurus’ eye!>” Daedalus grinned, picking the twig up in a claw before flying towards his flock’s roost.

    “<I really don’t see what’s so big about this twig…>” thought Daedalus while he swerved around branches.

    Daedalus hastily flew towards the tree where he last saw his flock. He landed on a thick branch and looked around the tree. It was barren. Daedalus let out a sigh and he hung his head.

    “<I’m gonna miss this place.>”

    Just then a dark blue and white wing came from behind him and covered his face.

    “<Guess who?>” a playful trill asked.

    Daedalus playfully thrust his head backwards colliding heads with the familiar voice. His head was released from feathery blindfold.

    Without turning around, Daedalus grinned and replied. “<Hello, Struthios. Your guard is down as usual.>”

    The Taillow flew in front of him and smiled, rubbing his own face. “<Or YOUR guard is always UP as usual.>”

    They grinned and slapped wings together in a high-five like fashion.

    “<It’s good to see you Struthios, where are the others?>”

    “<I sent them out on border patrol. We recently had a Spearow infiltrate out lines.>”

    “<Good thinking! See? I knew you’d be a good leader!>” Daedalus insisted, patting his buddy’s shoulder. “<I… I’m sorry about earlier. I was too abrupt and I was a bit too emotional, forgive me; it wasn’t very leader-like and I didn’t want to leave you guys like that.>”

    “<It’s ok, Daedalus. We all felt the same way... I speak for all of us when I say we’re really sorry we turned tail when you got hit by that lizard’s attack. It wasn’t very comrade-like of us,>” replied Daedalus’ close friend.

    “<No! It’s ok. You guys have saved me from life or death situations, you don’t have to be sorry for me getting captured by a human!>”

    Struthios sadly looked at the branch below. “<How bad is it REALLY?>” he said with a grimace, expecting the worst.

    “<It’s actually much better than I thought. The human is nice, although he seems as depressed as a Staraptor on rainy day. The pokemon are friendly… I guess.>”

    “<Really?! Don’t you remember what happened over at Route 101?! All of the pokemon, including Spearows, came either here or Route 103! The over-population caused us to watch our territories all day and all night!>”

    “<Yeah, I know. But Jeff, the human, isn’t like those ones. He cares about us, believe it or not!>”

    “<It’s going to be hard without you. We’re all going to miss you. You were our best leader,>” Struthios began to snivel.

    “<Now you’re their best leader.>” Daedalus lightly gave an encouraging punch with his wing. “<Struthios, you’ve always been one of my best soldiers. I know you’ll do great and I promise you I will be back soon!>”

    “<Thanks, Daedalus. Come back very soon. I’ll tell the others you were here.>”

    Daedalus nodded and they exchanged an informal wing shake and a grin.

    “<One more thing Daedalus… what’s with the twig in your claw?>”

    Daedalus replied with a smirk, “<If I see any Spearows, I’ll beat them with it for you.>”

    Struthios gave him a laugh and waved him off. “<Don’t forget what you said, Daedalus!>”

    Daedalus nodded and took flight.

    “<I won’t.>”

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Many minutes later, I heard Jeff cry out, “We’re out!” I saw the seemingly infinite ocean of tree canopy end and I could finally see the blue sky. It’s not that I don’t like tree canopies, but I wanted to get out of that forest… for now.

    We sat near the edge of the forest, waiting for Dae. I spotted a small, wooden house and dock. It stood over the water on four sturdy stilts. It must have been that Briney-guy’s house. From behind us, we heard a loud, continuous trill, from that of a Taillow. Jeff raised his elbow for Daedalus to land on. He flapped his wings to force himself to slow down before perching on Jeff’s arm; his claws dug softly into Jeff’s arm, who seemed to be unaffected by the action. The twig in beak, Daedalus passed the twig to me. Although it helped… I still didn’t feel whole.

    “<Thanks. We’re even now.>”

    “<No problem, Treeck,>” he replied.

    “<It’s about time, Featherhead!>” Corphish stated, with an impatient irritation.

    “<I’m glad to see you, too, Corppy. Now, let’s get going! So where are we going and why?>”

    Corphish paused about the answer and replied, “<If I told you… I’d have to kill you!>” He didn’t want to be the one to break the news that we were going to the gym.

    The two others rode on Jeff, down a tarmac pathway, which led to the beach. I still walked beside them, wary and uncomfortable. Since it was the break of dawn the beach was basically deserted, with the exception of the occasional jogger and pokemon who strolled in the sand. His feet sunk into the sand with each stride when he walked towards the dock. I watched the blue-green waves splash up against the stilts of the dock, creating a calming ocean mist. He walked, with heavy steps, up the wooden steps to the dock. Jeff walked up to the door and knocked.

    “Hello? Is this Mr. Briney’s house?” Jeff said in an uncertain, deep voice.

    “Why yes it is.” An older man in a yellow fisherman’s cap and overcoat carefully opened the door, inspecting the visitors. “I suppose you are here to be ferried across to Dewford or the beach at Slateport?”

    “Yeah, I am. I’ve got money if you need it,” Jeff suggested, fiddling with the twig in the corner of his mouth.

    “Oh no, that’s ok. I transport people and pokemon just for the sheer pleasure of sailing across the deep blue sea,” The man said merrily.

    “I’d really feel a lot better if I paid you,” Jeff insisted.

    “Really, it’s ok,” Mr. Briney said as a white bird, with blue stripes on its wings, landed on his shoulder. “Peeko and I do this not-for-profit,” he smiled, scratching the beady-eyed Wingull behind its ears.

    The stubborn idiot.

    “<Let it go, Jeff.>” I looked to him. “<And if you can’t do that, then slip it in the cabin of the boat as we leave.>” I knew that he hated receiving charity; I did too. Unfortunately all that he heard was “Treecko cko, tree.” That could have meant anything in his ears. I bit my lip in frustration.

    Mr. Briney locked the door to his house and walked along the wooden log deck. At the end of the dock was a medium sized, white schooner; it had a long, blue stripe going along the side of it. I noticed Jeff quickly slide a few bills into Mr. Briney’s mailbox. Typical Jeff. I grinned to myself and waited for him to get on the boat.

    Once we were on the wobbly boat, the other two climbed off of Jeff; I wandered to the aft of the ship, Corphish leaned against Jeff, who leaned against the metal guard rail surrounding the ship, and Daedalus took a perch on the front rail of the bow, as if making sure the direction of the boat was safe.

    We sat in silence; the boat took off for Dewford City.

    I rubbed the red mark on my face from when Jeff had hit me. The action replayed over and over in my mind: his hand striking me up the left side of face and the events following. I winced when I felt the mark. Or was it even there? No matter, the scar ran deeper than the few skin cells that the smack caused to ache. A chill went down my spine and I looked back at Jeff. I couldn’t help but wonder if our friendship was meant to last.

    Because of you nothing would be the same.

    Nothing.
    Last edited by Griff4815; 16th February 2009 at 12:15 AM.
    Claimed: Grovyle - November 10th, 2013
    Chapter 18 is up.

  24. #74
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    wow, that was absolutely amazing! and very long
    i love the emotion that is shown, i really felt the sadness and the joy, it was beautiful.
    i love the way you made Jeff's understanding of his pokémon dissappear after he slapped treeko, very lovely and inspired

    now to what i feel is negative: Daedalus finding the twig out of the blue just seemed too lucky. it did not really seem realistic enough to me....
    secondly, i did not understand the whole song thing.... could that please be explained?
    lastly, i did not get treeko's dream.... and how he feel asleep in such a moment of high tension....

    great chapter, my eyes could not leave the computer!
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  25. #75
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    Don’t let these filthy brutes take our home!>” the voice called as it slowly got farther away.
    felt as if I should be dead any second,
    Although he had trouble flying with my added weight,
    just for the sheer pleasure of sailing across the deep blue sea,” the man said merrily.
    Now this was a well-written chapter, and you've come a long way in your writing since the first chapter. Emotions were captured really well as the relationship between Jeff and Treecko hit rock bottom (with the smack and Jeff no longer able to hear Pokespeech afterwards) before getting patched up... somewhat. Jeff struck his Pokemon, and with Treecko's stubbornness, that's not something that'll be patched up with a mere apology. After doing something like that, trust between a trainer and Pokemon usually is built back slowly, and you do a good job with showing that at the very end.

    So I guess the way I interpret it is that Jeff and Treecko are on "uneasy good terms" right now, since though they're a team again, Treecko still has the hitting incident fresh in his mind.

    Now the only problem is, this is the second fic I've read in a row with a dark/depressed theme to it, and now I have to find something light and fluffy to read! *scurries off*

    “Watch it, PAL, unless you want me to set you up with a lifetime contract as a mascot for a car insurance dealership,” Jeff retorted with seriousness.
    I heard that the little guy actually makes a six-figure income. Might not be such a bad career path

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