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Thread: Under the System (PG-13)

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    Default Under the System (PG-13)

    NOTICE:I have chosen to discontinue this fanfic for a number of reasons, both personal and to do with the story itself. I apologize to all who enjoyed this as much as I did while it lasted. I'm mostly sorry that I never got to get to any of my fun plot twists, as I do ever so love those! I do have another story to tell however, one that I have chosen to focus my efforts on in favor of this fic. Thank you to all who read, and I hope to see you around the boards!

    P.S. If there are by some random chance any questions anyone has about this story or where it would have been taken, I have no problems with revealing details now that it is closed


    _______________________________________________


    My first fanfic here on the Serebii boards.
    As a note, this fic will only be about ten chapters long.
    Any form of feedback is appreciated, and I will try
    to apply any advice to further chapters. Thank you
    for reading, and I hope you enjoy, my second fanfic
    ever ...


    Under the
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    ---____---_----_---____---______----_____----_------_-----------------------/\-----------------
    --| ___|--\\--//--| ___|-|______|--| ____|--| \----/ |-----/\--------------/--\----------------
    --||___----\\//---||___-----||-----| |_-----||\\--//||----/--\------/\----/----\------/\-------
    --|___ |----\/----|___ |----||-----| __|----||-\\//-||___/----\----/--\--/------\--/\/--\______
    ---___||----||-----___||----||-----| |___---||--\/--||---------\--/----\/--------\/------------
    --|____|----||----|____|----||-----|_____|--||------||----------\/-----------------------------
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    --- by Sireath

    NOTE:
    If the title causes a problem for you in any way, please PM me so I can try fixing it.




    PG-13



    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~* ~


    __________________________________________________ ____________
    |-------------------------------------------------------------|
    |---------------------------Archive---------------------------|
    |-------------------------------------------------------------|
    |--File 00: Prologue: The System------------------------------|
    |--File 01: Prisoner------------------------------------------|
    |--File 02: Out of the Frying Pan-----------------------------|
    |--File 03: Contact-------------------------------------------|
    |--File 04: ------------------------------Cannot Locate File--|
    |--File 05: ------------------------------Cannot Locate File--|
    |--File 06: ------------------------------Cannot Locate File--|
    |--File 07: ------------------------------Cannot Locate File--|
    |--File 08: ------------------------------Cannot Locate File--|
    |--File 09: ------------------------------Cannot Locate File--|
    |--File 10: ------------------------------Cannot Locate File--|
    |-------------------------------------------------------------|
    ŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻ ŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻ


    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~* ~



    ---------------------------/-------\---------------------------
    ----------------------------|PM list|----------------------------
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------
    [elyvorg, Luphinid Silnaek, Lucarioman777, The Great Butler]
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------
    -----------------------------------------------------------------
    -------------------------------------------------------------








    \\\\\\\\\ /////////
    File 00: The System
    ///////// \\\\\\\\\

    Pokémon: we see these creatures every day, all around us. They dominate our culture, our clothing, our hobbies, our lifestyles, our jobs, and every other aspect of our lives. The most popular, most advertised, and most successfully marketed use for them is their unprecedented ability to fight.

    Pokémon Trainers make up nearly twenty-five percent of the world's population with nearly ninety percent of people owning at least one Pokémon. A staggering seventy-eight percent of the world’s economy depends on the many areas it covers.

    As it is with the majority of situations, what people take for granted are the things they see most often, in this case: Pokéballs. These objects are designed to contain Pokémon for easy transportation and ensure that a trainer can retain ownership. The small orbs, once activated, can capture a Pokémon on contact.

    After a Pokémon is caught inside one, this piece of equipment reads the data on it and develops a countercharge to immobilize it. This process takes an average of five seconds in which, with the exception of recent models, a Pokémon may damage the interior and break free, rendering the device unusable. If, however, the device is able to create a successful countercharge, it will lock and trap the Pokémon in a state of suspended animation --as if the Pokémon had fallen asleep-- until released by the trainer. With the help of modern technology, it will also distribute a special calming agent that helps make a Pokémon tamer for the trainer’s ease in handling. Some models even make them more receptive to commands.

    But there is one other side of them that is hardly considered by anyone, even those who learn to appreciate the aforementioned.

    When a trainer is in possession of six Pokémon, each additional one obtained is sent to the trainers PC --or storage system-- where it is either transferred to another PC of the trainer’s specification, or it is stored in the account without being sent anywhere else. The Pokémon League only allows a trainer to have six Pokémon on hand, and this helps to enforce that. But how is something like this accomplished?

    The answer: each Pokéball you purchase is scanned under a special machine before being given to you. This inscribes your PC account, which every registered citizen and trainer should have, in the Pokéball. Then, when it is transferred, it knows where to go. This is also why you should never use a Pokéball that isn’t yours, and you must never trade with another trainer unless using a licensed trading machine.

    All this transferring, recording, and trading may seem as though it would be impossible for any number of computers to process, especially with the rate of trainers and captures growing daily. Yet it all goes through one machine: the PokéHub, otherwise referred to as the System. This technological feat is advanced, even for its time. It runs endlessly, recording ever transfer, every capture, and every trainer.

    But is this such a good thing? Couldn't someone get into the System and transfer every Pokémon to himself or even cause it to cease its function? It is, of course, impossible. The System was built to run on its own, and thus, no one at all is ever near it. Even so, it is guarded in a secret location by top-notch security programs on every conceivable entry point, and if physically reached, the System has multiple scans, passwords, and other such things that must be entered before access is available. Finally, only someone who understands all the commands that need to be entered into it could even use it, as it would seem like meaningless digits and signs to anyone else.

    Everything is secure. Few people even know it exists, and all go about their merry adventures, uninhibited. Nothing can happen. But then... there always is a slight chance. After all, nothing is absolutely sure.

    There will always be people searching for the easy road out, and others
    will be desperate to find it. But if great power comes as the prize,
    someone will brave the task, no matter how difficult. There will always
    be someone trying…
    trying to get under the System.





    \\\\\\\\ ////////
    File 01: Prisoner
    //////// \\\\\\\\

    Was it a dream? Would I wake up in my own bed to the morning breeze wafting through my window? The serenity of the familiar scene would be more welcome now than ever. Perhaps if I tried hard enough to visualize it, I would open my eyes and find myself there. But if I was mistaken --should I wake to what I dread to be reality-- I may never feel that breeze again. However, that reality would soon call if I did not choose to meet it on my own. I mustered up all my courage, fighting back the urge to cling to my frail hope, and pulled away from my desired vision. I opened my eyes to greet the world.

    Where was I? This was certainly not the comfort of my bed, but it was not the horrific unknown for which I had prepared myself. Yet, what was I supposed to make of it? I was in a rectangular room, only large enough to fit the cot I was on, a chair, a toilet, a sink, and an air vent. All these things in this small room confounded me, but what really caught my eye was a small camera mounted in the corner of the wall. It was shielded by a glass cover.

    I might not have known where I was, but I knew what this room was meant to be. I was in a cell. The wall opposite the bed had a rectangular crease from the floor to a little above halfway up the wall. This must be the door. But there was no handle, no hinge.

    I sat up and felt a sharp pain in my side. This was accompanied by a dizziness that made it seem as though my head was filled with a swirling liquid that would send my conscious spinning if I moved too fast. I clutched my head and stood slowly. The floor beneath me was a glimmering white as were the walls. The ceiling was merely a large light that gave off a faint glow. I could see my reflection in a small mirror above the sink. Something on my forehead caught my eye, and I pulled back my short brown bangs to reveal a small blackish-purple bruise. It must have been from when I was knocked out. Oh well, it matched my violet eyes for the moment.

    I took a step forward and heard a mechanical buzz. Curious, I looked up too see that the camera had followed my movements.

    A motion sensor… how clever.

    It was only a slow step or two until I was at the door. I put my hands against it in hopes that a small push might get a reaction… but to no avail. The surface was smooth and dreadfully cold, and I drew back from it instantly when I found it wasn't going to open for me any time soon.

    A noise from behind me then snatched my attention. There was another crease in the opposite wall, but half the size of the one I thought was the door. It had made a hissing noise and sunk back into the wall about a centimeter. I watched as it slid to one side revealing a horizontal chute a few meters in length. The end of the chute began to slide in causing the illusion that it was shrinking. A metal box was pushed out and the panel slid back to its original position with a hiss. What I had thought to have been the end of the chute had actually been this box which was the exact size and shape to fit inside.

    I walked to where it had fallen onto the bed. It had no lid and contained but one thing, a white sheet of paper folded several times. I picked it up and unfolded it. There was a note typed on it with my name written across the top. It read:



    ----- To Kyle Wade – age 29
    -----
    ----- There is no possible way to leave your cell. While you are here,
    ----- you are to obey every rule we give you without question or
    ----- exception. They are as follows:
    -----
    ----- 1. Read all messages that you receive as soon as you are aware
    ----- they are there.
    -----
    ----- 2. Obey all commands given to you at the time specified. If a
    ----- time is failed to be specified, signal us through the camera, and
    ----- a follow-up note shall be sent.
    -----
    ----- 3. All notes are to be returned with the box unless indicated
    ----- otherwise.
    -----
    ----- 4. You are not to attempt to block the camera’s vision in any way.
    -----
    ----- 5. Use the toilet, sink, mirror, bed, and chair only in the ways they are
    ----- meant to be used.
    -----
    ----- 6. Make no attempt to leave the cell.
    -----
    ----- If you do not follow any one of these, we will use whatever force
    ----- necessary to ensure that you eventually do. Such courses of
    ----- action may include food being withheld, the discontinuation of
    ----- power to lights or your appliances, or other unpleasant
    ----- procedures as will not be disclosed.
    -----
    ----- The following is your first command –
    ----- Remove all articles of clothing. Your new attire will be sent to you
    ----- after you have sent us yours through the chute. This is to be
    ----- obeyed immediately.


    They weren’t exactly telling me anything I wanted to hear, and most of the rules were fairly obvious. I wish they had told me who they were, why I was here, where I was, or something --anything-- to put my mind at ease; instead, I had a sheet of rules and an odd command to remove my clothes. What kind of people were they anyway? I wasn’t too keen on following the strange order as I didn’t like the idea of being stared at by people who wouldn’t show their faces, but I had no control over the situation, as it appeared.

    I felt the cold atmosphere against my bare skin as I removed my shirt and shivered. I winced and noticed that the pain I had felt was a cut. It was large and a deep scarlet that glared at my pure surroundings with striking contrast. I touched the wound and felt cold blood against cold flesh. After I had removed the rest of my clothes, I placed them inside the box along with the message. I had no need to put my wallet or Pokéballs in there, for they had been taken off me while I was unconscious. As soon as I had done this, the chute reopened. They were of course watching me and had waited to open it until I had obeyed. I shoved the box inside. It fit perfectly with no extra space on either side for anything to get caught, and it closed over immediately with a small shunk.

    I didn’t know what to do next. I rubbed my arms against my chest to try and keep warm. Were these people going to send me clothes, or was this just a joke that they were playing on me to worsen my living conditions? My question was soon answered as the hissing noise whispered at my back once again and the box was shoved out. I grabbed for what was inside and clothed myself. They reminded me of hospital clothes that a patient would wear. The material was plain, light blue, and soft, but the shirt had the numbers 34-68-91 printed below the left shoulder.

    As the chute closed behind the box once more, I was shocked to see the door open. It slid to the side in the same fashion as the chute panel. A woman with jet black hair pulled up in a bun walked through as the door promptly shut behind her. She wore clothing exactly like mine and had deep cedar colored eyes that didn’t seem to be looking at anything, though they were certainly fixed straight ahead of her. Small glasses sat snugly on her face catching the reflection of the ceiling light at certain angles.

    “Good morning. I’m here to tend to your cut. I need you to remove your shirt and lie facedown on your bed.”

    She didn’t seem to be a very talented conversationalist. She said what she said and busied herself immediately. I eyed her cautiously as she set down a metal case on the chair. Her movements were almost inhuman. Nonetheless, I did as she asked and positioned myself on the bed. My wound felt exposed, and I felt her begin to examine it.

    “What’s your name?” I asked her inquisitively.

    “You don’t need to know my name any more than I need to know yours,” she retorted quickly. I wasn’t surprised at the blunt answer.

    “I thought you people… Ah!

    “Sorry,” she said, as I felt a needle pierce my skin. She didn’t sound sorry in the least. “You were saying?”

    I tried to look over my shoulder to see what she was doing. “I thought you all knew my name.”

    She stopped for a moment, eyes looking up from her work. She blinked, and for a moment looked nearly like a person. Without even looking at me, she spoke softly, “Don’t assume that the prisoners are the only ones being held hostage here.” She turned to her metal case for something, leaving her face out of my view.

    I turned my head back straight. What did she mean by that? I started to feel drowsy. She must have given me something in that injection to make me sleep. No! I had to know something. I had too many questions and finally had some one to whom I could ask them.

    Why am I here?” I desperately muttered as the dreariness swept over my body.

    But I was given no answer. She merely kept at her task. What was to become of me? Would I spend the rest of my days in this prison? What had become of my Pokémon, my family, and my friends?

    I suppose this is the price I must pay. I thought I had kept it secret. My hacking practice was only a hobby; I had never done anything illegal. Truly, knowing how to break the law wasn’t the same thing as actually breaking it. And why bring me here, why take me the way they did? This sort of thing was far too extreme for any reasonable justice system to allow. There must be some mistake. I hadn’t done anything.


    ---__-------__--___--__--_--_----------------------
    ----|__--\_/-|__---|--|__-|-\/-|---The Previous Day----
    ------___|--|--___|--|--|__-|----|-------------------------


    Porygon floated through the brightly lit house. Sunlight filtered through each window, the patio’s open doors, and the skylight. Faintly lavender colored curtains flew in waves catching the breeze. Colors filled the parlor of the house. Bright red brick made the furnace a beautiful standout in the room, though there was no need for it in the cool spring. Porygon settled down on the rug in the center of the room, walled in on three sides by the corner sofa and the reclining chair. It was content to have its afternoon nap.

    Out back, Persian stretched its legs as it lay on a branch in the backyard. It breathed deeply, fragrances flowing at it from the flowers below the tree. A Taillow let down on the branch and inspected Persian’s face. It chirped loudly, stirring Persian, but the feline merely shifted its resting position on the branch and allowed its ear a small quiver. Taillow proceeded to peck at Persian’s forehead. The cat jolted and swatted at the pest who had dared to disrupt her rest. The startled Pokémon screeched loudly as it flew off. Persian smirked and settled back into its former position.

    Soon after, her ears perked. Was the foolish bird coming back? No! It heard the sound clearly now. It leapt off its branch and ran though the patio doors into the house. Porygon flew into the air and spun madly to see what had disturbed it. Persian didn’t bother avoiding cyber-duck and pummeled right through it as she ran past. Porygon flew after the cat, for it knew what had made its friend so excited. The front door opened as soon as the two reached it.

    I entered along with my wife Jewel and our good friend Dianne. My two Pokémon surprised us with their greeting. Persian reared to its hind legs and started to lick my face while Porygon hovered around our heads. It was very difficult to get through the doorway.

    “Persian! Down girl!” I laughed as I tried to get the cat off of me. She obediently did so and rubbed against my legs getting fur on my tan slacks. After the three of us were inside, two young boys, Dianne’s twins, came running through, the both of them in matching deep blue overalls on top of red shirts. They squealed with delight as Persian licked at their faces. The happy Pokémon purred loudly.

    “Honey,” Jewel called, “Did we get all our luggage out?” She wrestled a rolling suitcase to the bedroom and flicked an auburn ponytail out of her face.

    “Yes dear,” I shouted back. I walked into my study and set down my briefcase. With the tap of a few buttons, I checked for new messages on my PC. One caught my eye as I didn’t recognize where it was from. I would doubtless check it later, for it was time to unpack at the moment. I walked back into the parlor and hung up my coat. Upon entering the kitchen, I found Jewel checking the answering machine while Dianne unloaded what food we had left from the trip.

    “Dianne, thanks again for watching the house while we were gone,” I said.

    She looked up from her task to give that bright smile she had. Her curly red hair shone with a golden glow from the windowsill’s light. “It wasn’t any trouble.” She grabbed a few cans and walked toward the pantry. “But I think you’ll find it to be quite a task to take care of the kids while I’m gone.”

    “It’s kind of funny how we just got back and you have to take off,” I said as I tried to find a way to make myself useful.

    “We’re always moving,” Jewel chimed in. She closed the refrigerator. “No, Kyle. That goes over here by the cake mix.”

    “Alright,” I said as the boxes were pulled from my hands. Backing up, I raised my hands innocently. “I’ll just stay out of it then.”

    “You know,” Dianne said as she strolled back into the room, “When we get back, maybe I can convince Donald to let the two of you come over for dinner.”

    “We’ll be waiting for it,” Jewel said. “That’s it for the food,” she stated, patting her hands on her skirt. “On to the laundry!” she cried overdramatically making her way through the hall.

    “I’ll be praying for you!” Dianne called sarcastically.

    “We, who are about to die, salute you!” came the sarcastic answer.

    I chuckled to myself and searched for an apple.

    “Oh, gracious, is that the time!” Dianne exclaimed. “I’ve got to leave now!” she proclaimed to the whole house.

    “Bye,” Jewel called as the washing machine began to drown her out.

    The two children, who had been trying to ride a playful Persian, ran to their mother and hugged her waist on both sides. “Bye mommy!” came shouts from two little voices.

    “I love you sweeties!” She kissed both of them on their golden heads and tried to move away. “Ugh, mommy sandwich.” Her green eyes gave me a ‘they’re all yours’ look which I silently laughed to. She was eventually able to break free, and I held the door open for her as she walked out.

    “Have a good trip, Dianne.”

    “Thank you; take good care of the kids!”

    I nodded and watched as the car pulled out of our driveway. The door closed, and I walked through the house to see what I needed to do next.


    ---__-------__--___--__--_--_------------------
    ----|__--\_/-|__---|--|__-|-\/-|---That Evening----
    ------___|--|--___|--|--|__-|----|---------------------

    The two children were jumping on the back patio, trying to catch Porygon who hovered temptingly out of reach. Jewel sat in the lawn chair, watching them with her sparkling brown eyes. I stood in the doorway observing the happy scene. Persian silently strode up next to me and scratched at its collar.

    I couldn’t help the thought that something had been forgotten in the course of the day. Everything had been unpacked, the children’s bedroom had been set up, and every imaginable chore had been dealt with. What could have… then I remembered. I hadn’t checked my messages yet. Doubtless it would be composed of mostly junk mail, but there was the occasional letter or two.

    I retrieved my Pokémon for the night, much to the dismay of the children who begged “Auntie Jewel” to tell them a story before they went inside, and walked through the dimly lit house to my office. The desk was sitting still as I had left it. I powered up the PC and heard the small noises it made as it came on.

    I was almost to the right page when I heard a loud noise from outside. I turned around and tried to see through the parlor. All was silent. This was mercilessly shattered by a piercing scream. My eyes grew wide with fear and I ran to the patio. The scream was muffled as I made my way. When I finally was outside, I found myself witnessing a terrifying scene. My wife was being dragged by a man in a black jumpsuit who had one hand over her mouth. The children were both crying and being carried over the shoulders of two additional men.

    With no time to think, I grabbed at my Pokéballs where I had set them down, but before I could release, I felt a sharp blow to my forehead. After that… nothing. The dreadful faces of my wife and the children were all I could see in the utter blackness.


    ---__-------__--___--__--_--_-----------------
    ----|__--\_/-|__---|--|__-|-\/-|---Present Day----
    ------___|--|--___|--|--|__-|----|--------------------


    Where am I now? I’ve been in this place for weeks. It’s all routine: three meals a day, read the notes, return the box, and then there’s the occasional checkup with the unnamed doctor. I may not know anything more about why I am here, but I have found the meaning to the doctor’s words. She doesn’t know what this place is any more than I do. She is just told to treat people. I wouldn’t be surprised if she stays in a cell herself when she isn’t doctoring.

    Will I ever get out of here? I may or may not. Nothing is certain…

    …yet.


    Chapter End



    So there you have it. This probably would have come out a lot sooner, but a move across the county forced me to put all writing on hold for quite a few months. I feel I can take up writing again now though. If you wish to be added to the PM list please say so.

    EDIT: just a note: I considered "File 00" too small for a real chapter and more of an intro, therefore, it is within the rules for it to be posted alongside the first chapter. I apologize if this was unclear.

    Good Fortune!
    Last edited by Sireath; 8th May 2010 at 7:23 PM.

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  2. #2
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    Wow. Would someone mind coming up with a reason why this has not been commented upon until now? Because I can't think of one.

    This is really intriguing so far, very original, and I'm eager to find out more.

    A few grammar nitpicks:

    It fitted perfectly
    Past tense of fit is fitted.

    There must be some mistake. I haven’t done anything.
    This sort of thing should really be in past tense as the rest of the story is.

    Jewel chimed in. She closed the refrigerator.
    Forgot to capitalise the S.


    I particularly liked the prologue as it's a good interpretation of Poké Balls and the PC system which I've seen quite a few theories on, but I find yours to be one of the most logical. Your writing style is very formal, which fits this kind of factual purpose. But I found that it perhaps detracted from the other scenes a little.

    Porygon floated through the brightly lit house. Sunlight filtered through each window, the patio’s open doors, and the skylight. Faintly lavender colored curtains flew in waves catching the breeze. Colors filled the parlor of the house. Bright red brick made the furnace a beautiful standout in the room, though there was no need for it in the cool spring. Porygon settled down on the rug in the center of the room, walled in on three sides by the corner sofa and the reclining chair. It was content to have its afternoon nap.
    This description of the room certainly isn't bad, but it feels a tiny bit like a list of facts. Descriptions need to flow with longer sentences - shorter ones can be reserved for more tense moments. I hope you don't mind me rewriting your first few sentences in an effort to show you what I mean.

    Sunlight filtered through the windows, open patio doors, and skylight, brightly lighting the house as Porygon floated through. Faintly lavender curtains flew in waves catching the breeze, providing one of the many colors that filled the parlor of the house.
    Linking ideas like this in longer sentences can sound better and help people to visualise the setting. Of course, you can completely disregard my advice; having just rewritten your work I feel like you have the right to reject anything I say. ^^;

    Also, it's pretty much a given in Pokémon fanfiction that you should assume your readers' total ignorance of the fandom and describe each Pokémon.

    Another thing I found with your factual style is that the emotions are rather lacking; this is the one thing you need to work on most, in my view. Take this sentence for example:
    When I finally was outside, I found myself witnessing a terrifying scene.
    This sentence sounds flat and dull. I don't want to know that Kyle is witnessing something terrifying - I want to know that he is terrified. I want to know how he's terrified - do thoughts race through his head? Does he stare at the attackers in shock? This happens elsewhere, too. I know that Kyle's annoyed about knowing so little about his imprisonment, but I don't just want to know, I want to feel his anger. You're using first person, which is probably the best perspective for conveying emotions if you do it right.

    To end, like I said, this is very intriguing so far. I like how Kyle is apparently imprisoned simply for knowing how to do something, rather than actually doing it. And the doctor who seems to be imprisoned herself is also a nice touch.

    Oh, and btw, love the layout of the first post. It really gives it the fic an atmosphere before you've even read the first sentence.

    I'll be happy to continue reviewing this heavily overlooked fic. Feel free to put me on a PM list if you like.
    .: 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

  3. #3
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    elyvorg: Thank you so much for the review. I used to be on the Pokemon IGN boards where I would get people correcting my grammatical errors, but never any comments to the writing itself, so I was kinda stuck in a rut of not progressing at all for the longest time. I'll try my best to take your advice to heart and apply it to further chapters. Character emotions have always been a weak point of mine, so those pointers are wonderfully appreciated.

    For your notes:

    "fit" can be used as the past tense of itself as well as "fitted". As for the other two, I've corrected them accordingly, and thanks again!
    *slaps himself for not putting the first word of a sentence in capitals*

    I know what you mean about my short sentences, it's a bad habit of mine when I have a lot of ground to cover. I'll try and use your advice. Once again, thanks for the notes on the emotion issue. It's very helpful.

    A question. I know that a person is at liberty to edit their grammatical errors, but I'm I allowed to rewrite sections or paragraphs? Excuse my ignorance. *markers "N00B" across forehead*


    I know I'm flawed, and I'm willing to admit it if it means I can improve. Hopefully, these forums will give me the opportunity to do so.

    Good Fortune!
    Last edited by Sireath; 15th November 2007 at 6:43 PM.

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  4. #4
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    Ah, I've been meaning to review for a while, now. Finally, my conscience caught up with me (and no, he's not a Dunsparce). PM me at each update, please.

    Your second Pokčmon fanfiction is quite useul, actually, more than you give yoursel credit. (Stupid "f" button, it keeps jamming because of all the lefotver snacks I've been feeding it.) Very shrewd, the possibility you squirreled out from within the manner of events in the Pokčmon world. I can't say I can see what Kyle has to do with hacking into the PC database, or why he's imprisoned in the first place. However, I presume that email he procrastinated to read was some sort of a warning or notice as to whether or why he would be sentenced to the strange institution that very day.

    As for advice, there is very little to give at this stage, and whatever little was given perfectly well by elvyorg. I assure you, you were likely only deprived of self-esteem by the inexplicable lack of reviews you recieved for this; your style is plenty good enough, by my eyes.

    Yours fervently,
    Pyroken Serafoculus

  5. #5
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    Hello, about time I found this! I've been meaning to read this since I saw it in the Author's Cafe. (Remember? I was there, and you and Pyroken, and a bunch of other people. Where are they?)

    The story's as cool as the title, it's interesting to say the least. It's set up pretty nicely (like the Computer type-up format. Hey, wait a second, I'm using a computer!) and the fact that he's in jail's got me interested. In fact...

        Spoiler:- A Crazy Idea:


    Anyway... yeah. My conscience happens to be made of a Lucario, a Gallade, and a Staraptor. Maybe that's why my parents call me crazy...

    Night, all!

    --Lucarioman777
    Last edited by Lucarioman777; 5th November 2007 at 3:04 AM.
    I have died.

  6. #6
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    This is something very different and very intricate. You have my attention. Your writing style is one of the best I've seen on these boards.
    When a friend gets mortally wounded everything gets put into perspective. Its time to go find the cure: Lugia.
    Running Away From Dreams - A Fan fiction (complete)
    Jamie never wanted to be a trainer but Tom didn't like being dead. The adventures of Jamie and Deadman

  7. #7
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    .:Pyroken Serafoculus:. - Hey, it's nice to see you here! First off, I'm not sure what you mean by my second fic being "useul" (I'm going to guess you meant "useful", but I still don't understand). As for not knowing anything about Kyle's predicament, don't worry, that's not something to go unexplained, in fact it will be shown very soon. However, the first chapter was more supposed to throw you into his situation, bewilderment and all.
    You are readily added to the PM list!

    Lucarioman777 - Well, I'm glad you found me, and that you think it's interesting. It's good to know that the computer-based theme isn't going unnoticed. I just love the things you can do with Courier New.
    As for your idea, it's not bad, but you'll have to wait for it to be explained.
    Hah! I didn't realize so many people actually read those things in my sig!
    If you want me to add you to the PM list, just say so.

    TrueCharizard - It's good to know that you like it, and I'm glad to have you here. If you too want to be on the PM list, just tell me.


    Well, the second chapter is in final proofreading stages, so the weekend (possibly Friday) seems like the best time to post it.Those on the PM list will be notified as soon as I've gotten it out.
    Last edited by Sireath; 13th November 2007 at 12:38 AM.

    Now up in the Fanfiction Forum!


    banner a collaboration between Warlord-Pickle and myself

  8. #8
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    Rawr. The random wandering Knight called... the Knight which Blazes (AKA Knightblazer) is finally here after a certain conscience kept annoying me to no end. And no, he ain't no Dunsparce either. Lucied's an annoying mutt whose sole puporse in life is to just annoying me to death, that annoying, irritating hound who keep annoying, irritating-

    : We get the point, Idiotblazer.

    Shaddup Lucied. ANYWAY. Gee whiz, this is some original fan fic, I must say! While a lot of people have been saying I'm a genius for incorprating Alchemy into my fic, I think you're grand for actually thinking behind what we all persive as it is - the PC. I mean, I for one sure didn't think about any system...

    : You just wonder about how insane I can be.

    Shaddup Lucied. In any case, I love your use of ACSIII (or something like that...) graphics, and I know from first-hand experience that it is very hard to do something like that. So yeah, props for doing that. And the beginning sure brings about one heck of a mysterious opening - I'm pretty impressed at how you've managed to just... turn us into the story, placing us into the mind of Monesiur Wade and telling us about his own thoughts and feelings. Most fictions I've read are now mostly Third POV, so reading such a greatd first POV like yours is a great change (and needed, too. xDDD;;; )

    : You just can't write in first person POV, just acepct that fact and we can all go on with our lives.

    Shaddup Lucied. And so with thus, I think I shall end my review. I'm not much of a reviewer, but I can say that your workis pretty awesome so far. Here's some geer for you to enjoy! ^^;

    Knightblazer - Just ingore the idiot.

  9. #9
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    Seems interesting, I guess.

    The fancy symbols were cute at first, but are very quickly becoming very annoying.

    Pokémon, we see these creatures every day, all around us.
    Comma abuse: a very fun way to start off. You just... can't use commas the way you use that first one. It should be a colon. A colon works: like so. (Assertion: reason, or Word: definition, or Thing: description.) Commas can't be used in that way.

    Lots of commas. There are other ways to break up sentences.

    Pokémon Trainers make up nearly twenty-five percent of the world's population with nearly ninety percent of people owning at least one Pokémon. A staggering seventy-eight percent of the world’s economy depends on the many areas it covers.
    This seems inane. Why are you putting this in? Know your audience. We all already know that pokemon is important in pokemon canon. Making up statistics is pointless.

    granted are the things they see most often; in this case… Pokéballs.
    Nope. Wrong. Grammatically, I mean. On two account. A) You used the semicolon incorrectly. Semicolons must connect two complete sentences. If you still do not understand, don't use semicolons. B) You used the ellipses wrong. (Ellipses = '...'). Again, you were looking for a colon there.

    These objects are designed to contain Pokémon for easy transportation and ensure that a trainer can retain ownership. The small orbs, once activated, can capture a Pokémon on contact.
    Again, this is useless information. You're telling your audience things that, by definition, we already know. In doing so, you're boring us and we are becoming uninterested in your story. That is not the way to open. Get to the important, new, exciting stuff.

    After a Pokémon is caught inside one, this piece of equipment reads the data on it and develops a countercharge to immobilize it.
    Uhm... what? First of all, way too many pronouns. Secondly, you can't feed us technobabble *you made up* and expect us to understand it.

    This process takes an average of five seconds in which, with the exception of recent models, a Pokémon may damage the interior and break free, rendering the device unusable. If, however, the device is able to create a successful countercharge, it will lock and trap the Pokémon in a state of suspended animation --as if the Pokémon had fallen asleep-- until released by the trainer. With the help of modern technology, it will also distribute a special calming agent that helps make a Pokémon tamer for the trainer’s ease in handling. Some models even make them more receptive to commands.
    This whole paragraph... besides being like Greek to me-- IE, making little sense-- begs the question, "Why?" Why do we need to know this? Why are you infodumping? Why not just get to the story? If it won't drastically matter, I, as a reader, do not care and you are wasting my time.

    Again, KEEP IN MIND THE AUDIENCE.

    But how is something like this accomplished?
    Pity me. Please. Don't... oh, here we go...

    ----

    Alright. Let me explain to you what has happened in this prologue: You have completely lost my attention. I came in curious, and, had I not started writing this whole thing, would be leaving bored right now. This entire prologue felt very, very extraneous. Why did you need to go through all that? There are several problems with it:

    A) You are telling us things we already know. None of us are stupid. We are all here because we like pokemon and understand the canon. The in-depth-description of what a pokeball is and how it works is inane and poor structuralization. In doing this, you're also really patronizing the reader, which is annoying. To say the least. Don't doubt the readers' intelligence.

    B) On that note, was that whole shebang *seriously* just to ask the question, "Oh noes, what if something went wrong?!?!?!?!" While it is a good question, the reader is (I'm hoping) intelligent enough to pick up this plot point as it develops. A prologue asking this in a succinct, interesting way *might* have worked, but you dragged it down and made it boring and anticlimactic, and it totally backfired.

    C) Watch your grammar.


    ----

    So chapter one.

    Yeah, as I mightily suspected... fancy symbols? Annoying.

    But that reality would soon call if I
    Be careful about using conjunctions to start too many sentences.

    but it was not the horrific unknown I had prepared myself for.
    Should be, "...for which I had prepared myself." Try not to end sentences with prepositions.

    This was accompanied by a dizziness that made it seem as though my head was filled with a swirling liquid that would send my conscious spinning if I moved too fast.
    This is a run-on sentence that's a mite confusing. Do break it up.

    Why didn't you just start with this? It's light years more interesting than the prologue.

    Watch your work and phrase repetition. It's not too bad right now, but just keep an eye on it.

    I watched as it slid to one side revealing a horizontal chute a few meters in length. The end of the chute began to slide in causing the illusion that it was shrinking. A metal box was pushed out and the panel slid back to its original position with a hiss. What I had thought to have been the end of the chute had actually been this box which was the exact size and shape to fit inside.
    This is all very confusing and sort of poorly described. I'd suggest rewording it, and/or having an outside party (beta?) read it for clarity.

    instead, I have a sheet of rules and an odd command to remove my clothes.
    You switch to present tense here. Bluntly: don't. Keep your tenses uniform.

    know yours.” She retorted
    Ah, a common problem: miswriting of dialogue. The period should be a comma, and 'she' should not be capitalized.

    case for something leaving her face out of my view.
    Comma between something and leaving.

    What did she mean by that?
    Does he seriously not get what she means by that?

    I had too many questions and finally had someone to ask them to.
    Again, don't end sentences with prepositions.

    I'm wary of the way the time jump is done. It's very abrupt. Why not just say, "He meditated on the previous day?"

    we were gone.” I said
    Comma, not period.

    it for the food,” She stated, patting
    She shouldn't be capitalized.

    Again, the huge giant block of transition is unnecessary and just disrupts flow. Just start the next paragraph with the phrase, "That evening,..."

    ----

    The first chapter was decent. It was incredibly more interesting than the prologue, but you still had a lot of grammatical problems and the prose was very young-sounding to me; both of these things can be fixed with experience.

    Again, I'll reiterate that you should probably just cut out the prologue because the first chapter was just that much better.

    The roundabout telling of it was a little odd, though. Why not just tell it in order? You don't really accomplish anything but poor transition by telling it non-sequentially. I think it would be a much nicer read chronologically.

    Anyway, this wasn't half bad. With practice, you could be good. Good luck.

    reviewing rowling
    because harry potter sucks

    livejournal facebook fanfiction

    'Don't be so modest, you're not that great.'

  10. #10
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    Knightblazer - I'ts great to have you here. I'm glad that you find this origional, I get a kick out of thinking up unusual or new things. Dunno why. Anyway, yeah, the ASCII art did take a while to fine tune, but once I started using Courier New, it wasn't that hard (in fact, it's pretty impossible without courier new... really). You might have noticed that the wave reading in the title is identical to the one in my banner, though the title logo came first. I've never written in first person myself until now, so I'm glad it isn't too obvious at least.

    Thanks for the geer, and I hope you don't mind me adding you to the PM list.


    Act - whoa, long. Ok, I'll try and cover everything...

    For the symbols... the Ascii art usage is the cornerstone for the artistic style I chose to incorperate into this fic, so I apologize if you have problems with it. If you have your internet font size set to extreemely large, yes they would be annoying, but I'm just assuming you don't like it. Sorry, but it's not going away.

    Comma abuse... whoops for the first sentence. Thanks for pointing that out. I know I can tend to use a lot of commas, but I try to keep myself aware of it.

    OK, the whole problem thing you have with the prologue... I understand where you're coming from, but I was writing the prologue to sound like a... informative paper, or something like that. I wanted to work from the bottom up to get to explaining the System.

    The next grammatical thingy... That was the result of poor proofreading, oops. I was in a hurry to get this out, so I only looked it over once after making a few drafts. That was my bad. Thanks for pointing that out for me!

    The too many pronouns issue... hmm, the "piece of equipment" was referring to the Pokeball and both "it"s were referring to the Pokemon. I didn't think it was too hard to understand, but I'm sorry if you were confused.

    All my numerous grammaticals... once again, product of haste - my fault. Thank you for catching them. I've corrected most of them.

    Time jumps... first off, there's nothing I can do if you don't like the Ascii art. As for not just saying, "he meditated..." It's because he wasn't thinking about it. I, the author was making a transition to show you what happened earlier. As for the shift into evening, I made the choice to make the complete shift instead of a continuation through text, and I am within my rights to do so. I can't say that I agree it would be better the other way, but you can have your opinion.

    The time jumps... I decided not to tell it chronologically because I wanted to throw the reader into Kele's state of unawareness within his cell from the beginning. That is another instance where it is my call. Sorry that you didn't like it.

    In closing, I did very much appreciate your advice and criticism; it's always nice to get different opinions. I'm not sure whether or not you're going to be reading this anymore, so I'll just say: thank you, and leave it at that.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Alright, I know this chapter was supposed to be out earlier, but my beta didn't get to me until Monday, and once Mario Galaxy came out, final proofreading took a little longer. I hope you all enjoy this though.


    \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\///////////////
    File 02: Out of the Frying Pan
    ///////////////\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\


    An explosion shook my cell, jolting me from sleep. The first sound to register with me was that of the blaring sirens beyond my room. What was going on?!

    As if in answer, the chute opened, and my box popped out. Alarms still providing ample background noise, I hastily grabbed the letter inside.


    ----- To Kyle Wade – age 29
    -----Stay in your cell. The situation is minor and will be dealt with swiftly.


    What? It sure didn’t sound like a minor situation. What could be happening anyway? Confused, I let the paper slip out of my hands and drift to the glossy floor below whilst I gathered my thoughts. This was the first thing out of the regular routine that had happened in the few weeks I had been here, and they were acting as though it were no big deal. What could that mean? Perhaps someone who did deserve to be here was being rescued by his villainous comrades, or an inmate had escaped and was loosing destruction on the facility. But where would he get the explosives? No, that option didn’t make any sense whatsoever. Maybe I was the one who was getting saved. But why then would they penetrate the building so far away from where I was?

    Listen to yourself,” I thought in self rebuke. “You’re rambling on about breakouts and escape. What has being in this place done to you?

    For half a second, all of my thoughts stopped. I could hear something thorough the wall behind me. It started as a low hum, and then gradually grew.

    Right as I turned toward this new mysterious noise, I caught the crack of a second explosion heralding the collapse of the wall in onto me. Falling backwards, I slammed my head against the wall bringing a searing shock throughout my body. Despite the newfound ache in most of my limbs, I scrambled to my feet, pulling my legs out from beneath loose drywall, and peered beyond the newly made hole through a dissipating screen of dust.

    Blades spun atop a black helicopter, the roar of which nearly dulled that of the alarms, but this only held my attention for a short while. Standing in the foreground of the flying contraption was the figure of a man. He looked somewhat ragged, sporting faded and torn jeans and a murky green vest atop a mustard colored shirt; in contrast, his hair flared up in red spikes as though his head were on fire. He bore an inquisitive countenance, but, upon seeing me, he seemed to find the answer he was looking for.

    Kyle!” he shouted over the roar of the machine behind him. “You’ll want to be coming out now!

    What?” I asked, shocked. My jaw hung loose, and my eyes looked upon him ambiguously. Did he really want me to go with him? It was not that I didn’t understand the man, but I had just reasoned that this was not a liable possibility.

    He rolled dull-blue colored eyes. “You’re being evicted! Now come on!” I looked around myself. In all honesty, comparing between living out the rest of my life in this hellhole and taking my chances with a stranger who appeared out of the blue to rescue me was ironically simple - I ran out to my... savior, if I could say that. He led me to the chopper and I clambered in to see that there was only one other person, the pilot. He made a small wave in greeting as the other man traveled to the other side of the chopper and took shotgun.

    My stomach was doing flips. I was getting out! My natural reaction of questioning things was discarded as I tried to embrace the fact that these people were rescuing me. I hadn’t the faintest idea what to feel: joy, thankfulness, or relief? The emotions seemed to want to crowd in for their turn, and I ended up mostly in a dazed confusion.

    Soon, the helicopter was up, and I had a better view of where I had come from. I almost didn’t believe it at first, but it was right there in front of me. For almost three weeks, I had been on an island! It was small, and most of the surface consisted of the same large building. Its defining feature, however, was that all sides of the landmass ended in a cliff face that dropped into ocean about thirty feet below. The whole thing seemed to have come straight out of some movie or other piece of fiction. I could see that there was a hole in the opposite side of the building, smoke billowing from blackened heaps of debris. This obviously accounted for the explosion that had started off my morning. Why would they strike the building so far away from my cell? Was it a diversion, or did they have other things to do there? I tossed these thoughts aside, for they mattered not.

    I looked toward the seats and their occupants in front of me. About ten dozen questions were burning through my head, but there was no way to know whether or not they could tell me anything about that place. I decided to put out what seemed to be the only reasonable question to ask at this point. “Who are you?” I shouted, but I was drowned out by the din of the blades above our heads. Discouraged, I sat and slowly watched as the island grew farther and farther away. I wanted to tell them thank you, but the helicopter would just make me inaudible. They seemed content enough without thanks for the moment.

    I scanned the contents of the helicopter, though there wasn’t room for much. All I saw were a few maps, coffee mugs, a bag, and a blanket, and above my head there was a small sign that had been painted onto the inside of the roof reading, “WATCH YOUR HEAD.”

    I looked out again. The prison had all but disappeared. I took a deep breath, and the air felt clean and pure. It was almost as though I had forgotten to breathe at all since we left, and my thirsty lungs were quenching themselves. For all I knew... maybe I had, maybe I hadn’t. It was a feeling of calm all the same. My stomach began to settle, and relief crowded out the other emotions.

    I’d never been over the sea before, and it was like nothing I had ever seen. The deep blue, swirling greens, and glorious reflections of light off the surface played host to leaping Wailmer, darting Sharpedos with their fins revealing their positions, and the magnificence of two Wailord as they blew their spouts to the sky. A few Pelipper and a flock of Wingull would dance around the surfacing Pokémon and get caught in small spurts with much gawking and screeching. This was the endless Hoenn Ocean. I looked on into it and seemed to lose myself in the tranquility that it set out before me. All notions of kidnapping, prisons, and rescues melted away as I let it swallow me up into its rhythmic tandem.

    After a few hours of northward travel, my mind was getting over the happiness of leaving and began to question whether I should have at all. My Pokémon were surely still there, and no mention of my wife or the children had been made, so they could be anywhere. I cringed as I thought of the children. Poor Dianne; she may never know what happened. I tried instantly to keep from thoughts like that; what good could they do me anyway. In a step toward more positive thinking, I opened myself to the possibility that maybe others, like these men, had saved them too.

    Soon, I began to notice a change in the scenery. The water had lost its green tint to be replaced by a darker navy, and rock formations could be made out beneath rougher waves. We were somewhere different now, but where?

    Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the pilot waving to get my attention. I turned, and he pointed northeast of our position. Following his arm, I could see that the horizon was covered in fog, but there were black spots within it that were barely visible. As we drew closer, new Pokémon appeared beneath the surface: Dewgong and Seel played tag with each other in small groups, Tentacruel and Tentacool stared up at the strange intruder, and a few Mantine even leapt forward and glided after us in a mad chase. The native Pokémon of Johto welcomed us to their home.

    Our destination was revealed soon enough: the Whirl Islands. Fog enveloped large masses of black rock which protruded from the sea’s merciless waves, though the dense cloak was blown clear of our position. White foam crashed against the small Islands that seemed to grow larger with each one we passed, and the largest of these had a gaping hole in its side, far above the waterline. It was through the maw of this dark mountain that we flew. For half a moment all was black, but subsequently our lights switched on to illuminate a large cavern. Golbat and Zubat scurried through the air in a mad frenzy at our entrance; some were pushed to the walls by the strong wind torrents we were raising. Their furious screeching was distinguishable even over the sounds of the helicopter.

    We let down on a large flat portion of the chamber, and a haunting, whistling noised piped in deep and high tones due to the air being pushed through long tunnels. I got out and gained my footing after the long ride.

    “Alright, chap?” the pilot asked -full of a British accent- as he climbed out of the chopper. He tossed a pair of headphones into his seat and shut the door.

    I took in a few deep breaths. “Yes,” I replied, despite stiff knees and an unattended bump on the back of my head. However, these seemed fairly trivial, and not worth remark. “Thank you so much for…” I looked back out the tunnel, unable to find words to do justice to their deed.

    He put a reassuring hand on my shoulder. “Don’t mention it.” I could see now that he, like his friend, had faded jeans, but he also had on a black skintight shirt with the sleeves cut off. A red bandana covered curly and unkempt blonde hair above brown eyes with shining spark of yellow. In addition, he had a bulky, muscular build that would have made him intimidating if not for his cheery face. The very hand on my shoulder seemed capable of crushing the joint off my frame, and I was glad that he appeared to have no such intentions. He seemed to me to be more of a… “gentle giant” as the term goes.

    The other man walked over to the wall and pressed a large button powering up a few large ceiling lights and a line of smaller lights around the base of the cavern. I could see now that the tunnel we had come through branched off into two paths beyond the landing pad.

    The red haired man then joined the two of us where we were standing. “All right then, Kyle, let’s go ahead and get this over with,” he said tugging off his gloves and wiping his brow of perspiration. “My name is Heath Vice, and this is John York.” John nodded to me. “You are now at our two-man base in the Whirl Islands. You just came from a Helburk holding facility in the middle of the Hoenn seas.” He tossed me the bag I had seen during our flight. “Now follow us and I’ll explain the rest of your sorry predicament to you while we walk.” Without a second glance to me, Heath started down toward the tunnel on the right.

    I tried to pursue the point. “Wait! What’s…”

    “All will be explained,” he promised, interrupting me.

    Helburk, I thought. It was just a name, but it was the answer to one of my million questions. If he continued his rapid fire factual method of speech, I’d probably have to pay close attention to find the answers to more of them. “Where are we going?” I inquired.

    “You don’t think we live on a helicopter pad, do you?” he yelled back as if I should know better. I made myself a mental note: keep small questions to a minimum with this person.

    Before following, I took a peek inside of the bag he had tossed me. My heart stopped. Absolutely aghast, I slowly lowered my hand into the sack and produced a small orb. Turning it over in my hands, I felt the small scratch on its otherwise smooth surface. I subconsciously smiled, stroking the mark that told me who was contained within the red and white ball. My Persian had placed it there when she was still a Meowth.

    Gingerly, I set it back inside next to the one I assumed must contain Porygon on top of a small bundle consisting of the clothes I had worn the day I was taken. I didn’t care how they had gotten them; they were here. Thankfulness swarmed in upon me, suppressing any other feeling.

    “Come on Kyle,” John called. I burst from my momentary state and started off after them. He let me pass him and took the rear of our three man procession.

    “The reason those people wanted you,” Heath called back, continuing his narrative, “is because they wanted to keep you from helping us,”

    I froze in my tracks. “What?” One answer down, and already my mind had begun to lock up. Who exactly were these men?

    John urged me onward so the two of us could catch up to Heath who was unaware I had stopped.

    Meanwhile, Heath continued talking. “We were planning to go to your house and make a proposition to you when we heard they were going to try and get you first. That’s why we sent the message. We were trying to warn you.” He let out an exaggerated sigh. “But, I suppose you never saw that, did you?”

    I stumbled over a boulder and hopped a few steps forward to steady myself. I vaguely remembered a mysterious message, though I never assumed it could have had anything to do with this. I adjusted my footing as the path here started to make a great slope downward.

    “You see, what we wanted your help for was something a little… delicate. Anyway, they didn’t want to risk you going to our side of things, so they decided to lock you up instead.”

    “What do you mean by ‘delicate’?” I asked, beginning to feel as though I may not be as safe here as I had thought.

    “Time and place, Kyle. Time and place. Ah!” he said stopping. “Almost there.” We stood in front of a large iron door that had been placed into the rock. There was a small keypad off to the side of it. He tapped on it a few times and a loud hiss emanated from the door accompanied by a sharp chime. He pulled it open and we entered a small compartment. One of them closed the door, and I could feel the floor beneath me start to rumble and clatter as we began to descend. They had built an elevator! It was slow and creaky, but it was functional.

    “Now that you’re out of that place, we can get back to business.” Heath said to me.

    We slowed to a halt.

    “What business is that?” I asked, dangerously close to accusingly. “What kind of people are you two anyways?” They both smiled to themselves, and John opened the door.

    I stared in wide eyed awe, for inside was the largest single room I had ever seen. It was dome shaped and reached up five stories at the very least. While most of the floor was covered with electrical equipment or living space (primarily the former), there was a large circular pool of water in the center that was about ten meters in diameter with a smaller hole directly above it in the ceiling. Something quite interesting though was another door down the wall that might provide another way out.

    “We’re hackers, Kyle,” Heath said matter-of-factly. “Just like you.”

    I turned to look at them in shock.

    “We’ve been watching you for some time now, and we believe that you can be of a great help to us.”

    “That’s ridiculous,” I tried to counter immediately, baffled at their statement. Hacking? How do they… this isn’t… they can’t be serious! “I only know a little, and I haven’t even tried…”

    “Have you ever conversed with another hacker before?” John interrupted.

    I was confused at the question, and my mental scrambling was brought to a screeching halt. “What? What does that have…”

    “Have you ever made the acquaintance of one, conversed with one in any way?” he said, continuing his inquiry.

    I tried to figure out what he was getting at. Was there some sort of Hackers Union that I was supposed to know about? Unable to come up with anything, I answered his question with a simple, “No… no I haven’t.”

    “I see,” John raised an eyebrow. “So you don’t understand that some of the things you’ve managed to hack for the fun of it are things people would pay millions for?” He didn’t need an answer; my astounded expression amounted to as much.

    I looked from one to the other, unable to imagine what I could have done to impress them this much! I tried to remember all the things I’d hacked, but my mind was in such a jumble that I couldn’t get a clear picture. All I was sure of was that never once had I tried anything with wrong intentions.




    Well... at least… that’s what I told myself.





    Maybe that’s all I’m letting myself remember.





    It’s been years after all…




    “Kyle,” Heath said, breaking the silence. “I think we need to sit down for a while and discuss our proposition.”

    I cautiously followed them to an area of the room made up of a few old couches and a ratty old rug. I was eager to finally find the reason why I was taken and why they seemed to need me so badly, so I decided to go along with them for the time being. Heath leaned back on one of the sofas and put his feet on a boulder that was supposed to be a stool. John sat down next to him but seemed more content to sit upright. I took a seat next to them and cleared my mind as best I could for what was to come. This wasn’t easy, as I was struggling with a number of thoughts.

    “Are you familiar with something called the System or Pokéhub?” John asked.

    I took a few seconds to try and recognize the terms. “I’ve heard it mentioned a few times, but I don’t know what it is,” I replied.

    “Very well then, I’ll explain it to you. The System is a specialized supercomputer that processes Pokémon transfers and captures. It is also the power source for PCs and Pokéballs. We plan to take control of it.” He looked to me for my response.

    I blinked, not sure what to make of it. “What?”

    He took a deep breath and began to elaborate. “Listen carefully, when someone is in possession of the System, they can track the movements and activities of any trainer in the world. They can also take and move any Pokémon they want. The world would literally be at their fingertips.” The seriousness of this was beginning to dawn on me. I stared absently at the floor, trying my best to register the rest of what they had to say. “The System is guarded by security mechanisms as high tech as the thing they protect, and the System itself has multiple passwords and scans to get past before you can use it. This however, is only what we’ve managed to gather so far.”

    “You don’t think we’re living this far off the radar to steal money off people’s life savings accounts, do you?” Heath put in as if it were supposed to be obvious. “Work like that can be done from your home, if you’re good enough not to get caught.”

    I gave them a blank stare for two seconds. “So you intend to take this… System… with two people?” I asked in disbelief, purposefully counting myself out, not wanting to presume what I hoped wasn’t true.

    John shook his head. “No.” He looked me squarely in the eye. “We intend to do it with three.”

    I got up and wiped my hands on my pants. “Well, good luck finding someone,” I said, feigning support. In my mind though, I thought these people were insane. I wasn’t going to… no, I was incapable of helping them, especially with something as hair-brained as this. I picked up my bag and started to walk towards the second exit. “I’m sorry; I just don’t see any reason why I should help you.”

    I had done it. All I had to do was keep walking; I’d be through the door… and then I’d be away from these people. There it was, I had made up my mind and I had taken initiative.

    I was nearly at the door when Heath shouted to me, “You can never go back, you know.”

    I turned to look at them. “The helicopter can’t be the only way out of here.” I swung back around to leave, holding onto some fool’s hope that they’d not say more.

    “You’re right,” he called, “but that isn’t what I meant.” I was standing at the door now. “You know those people at Helburk?” I froze instantly at the mention of that place. “Once they’ve tagged you as dangerous, nothing you say can convince them otherwise. If you show your face in the outside world, they’ll put you right back where you were, and we’d have no reason to fish you back out.” I began to breathe heavily. Was he bluffing? Surely he… “If you want to live the rest of your days with your wife, you’re going to need our help.”

    Those final words were what hit me. I turned around to face them. My voice put on a more serious tone; my entire being focused on one thought for the first time in that entire day. “You know where she is?”

    He shook his head. “Nope, but we can find out, something you wouldn’t be able to do in a million years, even with your amazing talents.”

    Anger pulsed through me. I strode back towards them. Nothing so far had happened due to anything I had done. These people had gotten me into this, put me on the wrong side of an organization that imprisons people in a heartbeat to protect the very thing I was being asked to help steal, and now dared to use my wife as a bargaining chip to get my help! Never a man of poor temper, I had kept a mild attitude in the face of all this, but I couldn’t contain myself any longer. I closed in on Heath. “Don’t taunt me, you SON OF A …”

    “Now, now,” John cut me off firmly as he stood up. His looming mass of a figure towered over me as his voice calmed to a gentle pitch. “Let’s not lose our tempers Mr. Wade. We do want to help you.”

    “Then HELP ME!” I yelled. My voice was shaking now, as the rest of me probably was.

    “We will,” Heath said in an unbearably calm tone. “We will, and all we want in return is a favor.” I tried to control myself and take deeper breaths. “If you really think about your options, you’ll realize that only one makes sense to take.”

    ---__-------__--___--__--_--_----------------
    ----|__--\_/-|__---|--|__-|-\/-|---That Night----
    ------___|--|--___|--|--|__-|----|-------------------

    I had changed into my clothes, and they kept the prison garb for cloth scraps. John had given me a pair of jeans to replace the slacks that he told me "simply wouldn’t do" down here, also warning me that my light blue button-up shirt would probably get ripped and torn. As it turned out, they didn’t have extra shirts to offer me, so I was allowed to keep it.

    I hadn’t let my Pokémon out yet, and I was hesitant to. As far as I knew, they thought we were still at home, and I was unsure how they would adapt, if indeed they did at all. I fingered their Pokéballs in one hand and struggled with my thoughts.

    Heath had already gone to bed on one of the couches to try and sleep, but John was still up and messing around with the mechanical mess in one part of the chamber. So far, this place wasn’t proving to be much better than the Helburk cell. I only whished that there were some way I could know if Jewel was okay. A plan had begun to form in my mind, but I had tried to push it back almost immediately after spawning it. What Heath had said about being incapable of convincing my previous captors of my innocence was firmly etched in my mind, but maybe it was worth the risk. If I could only escape… maybe… maybe if I told them where to find these men, they’d give Jewel back, and the kids. Then everything would be just the way it was before. These were very dangerous thoughts to be thinking though.

    I looked back toward John who was cupping some water from the pool into his hands. Getting up slowly and putting my Pokéballs in one pocket, I walked to the edge of the water closest to me and opposite John. “Where does someone go to the bathroom around here?” I said hesitantly. He looked up at me. In an attempt to be humorous, I added, “Not in the drinking water, I hope?” I fidgeted slightly. There’s no way he can be buying this!

    He smiled. “No. The ‘toilet’ is through there.” He gestured with his head toward the door I had almost gone out of before. “You’ll know it when you see it. Take one of the flashlights on the wall.” He patted his hands on his jeans and returned to whatever he was doing.

    I nodded in thanks, glad that he didn’t want to show me where it was himself. Once I grabbed a flashlight, I walked to the door and turned the handle. It opened easily and I stepped through. The new area I was in consisted of another long tunnel, but this one had a deep river on one side that seemed to come from the room I was in. This puzzled me, but I just told myself it had something to do with the large pool and left it at that. I walked on the rocky terrain parallel to it under light from a large lamp that was mounted above the door, but I soon rounded a corner and found need for the flashlight.

    ---__-------__--___--__--_--_-------------------------
    ----|__--\_/-|__---|--|__-|-\/-|---A Few Minutes Later----
    ------___|--|--___|--|--|__-|----|----------------------------

    Heath felt his consciousness returning to him and lifted his upper body off the couch, throwing off a ripped blanket. He rubbed his eyes and took a look around. Something was missing. John was working, but Kyle was absent. “He left already?” he said inquiringly to his comrade, readjusting the rest of his senses into clear focus.

    “He really had to go,” John replied, without turning around.

    Heath got up and grabbed his shirt. “Dammit, John! I wanted you to wake me up the moment he started his escape attempt. What was his excuse?” His tone was more one of annoyance than anger.

    John continued on in the same unassuming tone. “He said he had to go to the bathroom. I had him take a flashlight.”

    Heath pulled the cloth over himself and straightened it out. “He doesn’t need a flashlight to reach the bathroom. It’s right outside the door.” Curiosity showed in his voice.

    “But he doesn’t know that, does he?” He smiled at the thought of it. “Don’t worry, he won’t get far anyway.”

    “I know,” Heath said as he grabbed his vest, “but I want to see the look on his face when she finds him.”

    ---__-------__--___--__--_--_-------------------
    ----|__--\_/-|__---|--|__-|-\/-|---In the Tunnel----
    ------___|--|--___|--|--|__-|----|----------------------

    I cried out in alarm as my foot caught a small outcropping of rock, sending me to the ground. The flashlight flew from my hands and clicked off as it landed. Swearing under my breath, I gathered myself up wincing at what felt to be badly scraped hands. I tried to feel along the ground in the direction it had fallen, but I was met by rough rock that agitated my sore hands.

    I had been searching a mere thirty seconds when my mind was nearly shattered by a screeching roar. No creature alive that I had ever encountered could make a sound as painful and awe-inspiring in the same cursed breath as the one I was hearing. The tone at first was high, then low, bellowing in an almost musical pattern. The sound filled my head driving me to now franticly grab for the flashlight. The noise stopped suddenly, releasing my being from its merciless grasp. I could hear movement in the water to my side and felt a cold splash. The ripples seeped onto the rocks and caused the flashlight to clatter. In my panicked state, I instinctively dove for it. My hand grasped wet metal and I flicked it on. A beam of light illuminated the path once more, and I waved it in every imaginable direction over the water’s surface. Something was moving swiftly, up and down the current as if it couldn’t make up its mind, but I couldn’t get a good look.

    I didn’t have to imagine what it was for long, for it decided to come out on its own. First, the swirling stopped, and then… a giant, white, birdlike head burst from the river. Gleaming eyes locked in mine as water fell from its white crown. Following soon after was its slender neck, gleaming white, then a monstrous body. It was more beautiful and terrible at one moment then anything I had seen. It had two gargantuan arms, or rather wings, stretched out in a large arc, and it held itself with the composure of royalty. The beast moved slowly, neck craning downward. The head came closer… and closer… and closer until it was down to my level. Those eyes on violet crests seemed to sparkle with delight at my petrified state. A row of sharp, glistening teeth revealed itself and hot breath blew on my face. Its eyes were now not a meter from mine. I trembled with fear, heart rate racing and my breath matching it in speed. I wanted to yell, to run, or anything, but I dared not to.

    This moment of horror was severed, however, by a sharp noise from the end of the tunnel I had come from.

    A high pitched whistle caught the attention of the beast, and I turned to follow its gaze. Heath was standing partially down the tunnel, a look of pleasure and amusement lining his face. He chuckled slightly as he saw my expression. How on earth could he be reacting this way?

    “Thank you, Lu,” he said, but obviously not to me. The only other conclusion to be drawn from this comment though was… absurd!

    The creature gave me a passing look, let out a deep, monstrous, yet strangely bird-like call, and then dove beneath the water’s surface with grace I would never expected from something its size.

    Heath looked intently at me, the sparkle not yet out of his eyes. “So,” he called out. “What were you planning on doing once you escaped?”

    I looked back into the water, then at him again; his question held no relevancy for me at this point. “You have a legend here!” I called out in disbelief.

    His face immediately shifted to one of strict displeasure. “Listen hard and listen well, Kyle. There are no such things as legendary Pokémon.” He spat out the final two words as if they caused a foul taste in his mouth as he said them. “There are only Pokémon smart enough to play on the ignorance of the superstitious and easily excited.”

    I looked in wonder at the man, at a loss for how he could say that after seeing what I had. “It’s good to know you’ve met Lugia,” he said turning his gaze to the current. I couldn’t believe it. He spoke as if it was his friend or something. He must have read my face, for he soon explained. “She and I came to an understanding when I first started living in this place: I would keep her company, and she would keep others out - and in your case, keep people in. She sleeps down at the bottom of the pool in our cavern, and the underwater tunnel in there leads into this river. This whole island is just a mess of waterworks.” He beckoned to me. “Come on back. Face it, you’re here to stay.”

    Chapter End



    Okeydoke, you're now introduced to the main plot. congrats! I look forward to all of your reviews and hope to see some new faces!

    P.S. I just kinda realized that in a previous post of mine, I said I knew I was flawed and was not willing to admit it if it meant I could improve. Yeeeaaaahhhh, dat was a typo. I just removed the "not" and am off to hit myself over the head with a hammer. Have fun!

    Good Fortune!
    Last edited by Sireath; 18th June 2008 at 11:24 PM.

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  11. #11
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    Style isn't the perversion of writing rules, it's the careful manipulation of it for your own benefit.

    It's fine (in that arbitrary kind of way) to justify every correction you get with the phrase, "Well, it's up to me so, too bad," but... well, just expect people to keep correcting you... because it doesn't make you more right, or a reviewer more wrong. It just is.

    And I'd recommend proofreading before you post something if every single grammatical errors was due to oversight by you.

    Alas. Adieu.

    reviewing rowling
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  12. #12
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    Whoa, that's certainly one unusual and interesting concept, as well as the formatting (Ascil text, you called it..?) I haven't read the second chapter yet, but get to it I shall.

    Also, don't consider this a mere return-review--I was actually going to read this before you dropped kind comments on my story. XP You beat me to the punch. D:

    Just curious, though--is this your first story here, or...? I've seen you around in the Cafe.

  13. #13
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    Act - To begin, I just want to clarify what I mean when I say "style". Style, to me, is foremost the artistic style of the fic (or appearance).

    Saying that my style for this fic is perversion is your opinion which you are entitled to have. Saying it adds to the story is my opinion which I am entitled to have. As the author, the decision is up to me. However, if you were referring to my use of punctuation, then I think we are at a misunderstanding. Grammar and punctuation usage corrections that you made are some of the things I was most thankful for!

    If I were blatantly making grammar errors and saying, "Well, I can leave those sentences as askew as I want to 'cause I'm the author," I would perfectly understand your position. As it is, artistic style is not something that can be tagged as right or wrong, but is left to the opinions of those who see it. I am trying hard to stress that point.

    So far, you are the only one who is seeing this as a problem, and I hope you can understand how I must take that into account.

    You have a wonderful knack for finding grammatical errors that may have been missed by proofreads (and yes, I am putting chapters under multiple proofreadings before posting. The first chapter is the only one that got rushed), and I would enjoy having you around as well as hearing your opinion of the actual storyline as it develops. However, I must ask that on the subject of the artistic style we must agree to disagree. If it is too much for you to read this, ASCII included, then no one is forcing you to read, but understand that that isn't the way I want it.

    Thank you once more for the review.


    Kiyohime - Hey! A new face. I' really glad you decided to pop in. I much look forward to your review of chapter two.

    Yeah, your story is definitely interesting, and I'm glad I hopped in at the begginning (Catching up on fifteen chapters of Midian before I could review was tough).

    I think we saw each other on the banner thread not too long ago. The only other place you might have seen me was on the preview to your own fic (unless you saw me before my looooooong absence. Maybe you saw the preview to this fic when it was there. I dunno). As stated at the very top of the thread, this is my first Serebii fic, but second fic overall (the other one is unfinished and in serious need of revision).

    You can tell me after you read the second chapter whether or not you want to be on the PM list.
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  14. #14
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    That was an interesting chapter. Heh, I just thought of something, if, at the end, Kyle makes it out with his reputation standing, he could sue the govt. for being unconstitutional.

    Anyway, that explains why he was wanted by the jail guys. How can Kyle not know how serious his hacking has been, though? Oh well.

    Lucario/Gallade/Staraptor pwn all.

    --Lucarioman777
    I have died.

  15. #15
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    And the storyline gets underway.

    The description has improved quite a bit - not enough for me to think "wow, this is brilliant description", but enough for me to enjoy reading it all the same. I particularly liked the moment when Lugia emerged, and the large room as I could visualise it well.

    Emotions are also much clearer; I could really get a feel for Kyle's incredulity and confusion at, well, everything. One thing I do feel is lacking is his feelings about his wife. Obviously he loves her, being married to her, but I'm not shown this. I want to feel how much he cares about her, I want to share his desire for her safety.

    The Lugia is a nice touch, especially this:
    “There are only Pokémon smart enough to play on the ignorance of the superstitious and easily excited.”
    which changes what we assume about it in one simple sentence and give a reason for Lugia happily staying with Heath and John. Although I can't help wondering why she does it because they "keep her company" - Lugia never struck me as a Pokémon to be bothered by loneliness, but then again, it's your call.

    A couple of things bothered me.
    ...that led who knows where.
    There was another "Who knows" somewhere in this chapter and neither of them really sounded right. For one thing, it's present tense, so "Who knew" would fit better, but for another, it just seems inconsistent with the rest of the narrative as it's informal and appears to be talking directly to the reader which isn't done anywhere else in the chapter.

    The other part which bothered me was the entire last section. The "people" could have referred to either Heath and John or the authorities who locked him up, and I can't help thinking that it switches the one it refers to without indication. The whole section itself came across as rather rambling and pointless, summing up a situation which we can sum up ourselves, and confusing us in the process. Personally, I'd prefer the chapter without it there at all.
    “Come on back. Face it, you’re here to stay.”
    ...is a suitable finishing line and much more effective than a ramble ended on an exclamation mark (pet peeve of mine - exclamation marks in the narrative bother me, but as it's first person I can perhaps understand why you leave some in).

    I look forward to your next chapter; there seem to be many places you can go from here.
    .: Evolution is a battle .:. Something has to lose :.
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  16. #16
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    Lucarioman777 - Hmm, nice thought. What makes you think that the government behind this has something against that in their constitution? On that note, what makes you think that a government is behind this at all? hmmmm...

    elyvorg - *swipes out his notepad* Description and Emotions better, but not excellent or anything, Got it! I'll try and step it up a bit.

    I thought his thoughts about his wife were going well, but I'll give those more attention since you think they need it.

    Lugia, one thing that drastically diffrentiates my fic from others. However, when considering the views of legendaries proposed in this fic, you have to take into account where they are coming from. All you have heard so far has come from Heath, and the more you see of him, the better you will be able to decide how to treat whetever nuggets of knowledge he spews.

    Da "who knows"s... I never actually considered those to be anything special, but they've now been altered. Thanks!

    Now, the whole last section bit. When you mentioned something, I took a look and HOLY CRAP, I CREATED A "PEOPLE" FEST! Needless to say, I immediately started editting away. After considering your other advice on it, I worked on it a bit more until I felt I couldn't get it to work. The whole thing got scrapped.

    Thanks for the kind review.

    Good Fortune!

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  17. #17
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    Late....

    Out of the frying pan, indeed. A certain detraction I noticed is that the storyline is seeming slightly too... obvious at this point. What I mean to say is that certain twists of plot are almost foretold to the reader; when you explained the Pokčhub weakness and then labeled Kyle out to be an amateur hacker, it was rather apparent that he would, for some reason or the other, hack into this hub. When he was captured and imprisoned in the prison, I could tell that he would have to break out somehow, I merely did not know how; and the answer to this question could not be speculated or inferred by the storyline. I may be somewhat high-standarded about plot intricacy, but perhaps the turn of events should be a little more unpredictable, and the foreshadows subtler than they are at this point.

    Ah, whatever. Only something to consider.

    If Kyle does get to hacking into the hub, I shall be interested to see how you portray his task. (Perhaps you have some experience concerning digital information, which you may display here!) I shall also be interested to see how he reacts to commiting obvious crimes, and how these other hackers react to his opinions about taking over the world. Ah, and by the way:

    First off, I'm not sure what you mean by my second fic being "useul" (I'm going to guess you meant "useful", but I still don't understand).
    I did mean useful, indeed. I wished to say it was a good fiction, but all appropriate synonyms have been canvassed out entirely, haven't they? Pardon for the misunderstanding.

    Yours apologetically,
    Pyroken Serafoculus

  18. #18
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    I just read through these two chapters, and they're quite enjoyable. The storyline reminds me somewhat of the movie Live Free or Die Hard, with the computer hackers planning to do something most people would consider evil with some sort of twisted "good" motivation.

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  19. #19
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    Oh Ho! My little observation has sparked some controversy (sort of). Well wouldn't you need a goverment to be involved somehow? I mean, the System could be privatly owned and operated, but the goverment would have to give them the ability to use the System to oversee all Pokemon activities (as far as Pokeballs go, anyway) with every trainer in existance, right?

    And I was basing the constitution on the U.S. one (the oldest and most modeled constitution in the world), where the Eighth Amendment says that "Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted." Putting a guy and his family in jail because you think that the guy will be tempted to join a dangerous criminal syndicate is definetly cruel/unusual.

    That was my excuse. Lucario/Gallade/Staraptor pwn all

    Over and Out,
    --Lucarioman777
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  20. #20
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    .:Pyroken Serafoculus:. - late, shmate, don't feel bad about it. It's not like I expect everyone to post right away. If they did, this would be off the first page in a day O.o...

    Now, about the story being obvious. The first plot point you pointed out was that Kyle was going to use his l33t hacking skilz to somehow infultrate the system. This is the main plot, so if I kept that a secret, it would be kinda like not telling readers of Lord of the Rings that they're trying to destroy the ring (OMG spoilers!!! ok, 'nough jokes). Anyway, the other thing you mentioned is that Kyle was somehow going to get out... well, I suppose keeping him there might have worked out another plot, but I never really thought of his escaping as a plot twist, so I didn't try or anything. Rest assured though, this story will have a number of twists, mostly concerning ******************(like I'm tellin'). I would be bored out of my mind if the whole thing was cut and dry.

    Anyway, thanks for reviewing, and I'll take your concerns into account. See ya around!

    The Great Butler - Hey, another new person (I can't believe it! It's a person and its new!) NE way. I've never seen Live Free or Die Hard, but it looked pretty sweet. My bro saw it, but didn't really tell anything about the plot. Mostly he just harped on about the "Yippee Kai yay (sp?) Mutha ******" line. (yeah, no clue how to spell that.

    It's great to hear that you enjoy it so far, and I'll see you around. If you want on the PM list, just say the word.

    Lucarioman777 - Seems perfectly valid. Know that I have the main plot points worked out and that they make sense, but it is still interesting to hear your ideas on it. I reccomend thinking a little more outside the box for whatever assumptions you have next. I'd love to hear them (just remember da spoiler tags ).

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

    I'm grateful to all of you for reading this fic; it does wonders for my motivation. With Thanksgiving break coming up soon, work on chapter three will be my primary focus. I have an old draft of the chapter, but I think I'll be rewriting it with all of you generous advice in mind. All those on the PM list will receive instant notification at the chapter's release. See y'all around the boards!

    Good Fortune!

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  21. #21
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    Yes, I'd like into the PM list.

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    Okay, been gone a while, but from the looks of things, I'm not the only one. Big deep breath... Okay! New chapter comin' right up! I've tried to make some improvements in this chapter, so tell me how it went!


    \\\\\\\\////////
    File 03: Contact
    ////////\\\\\\\\

    I rose myself up from where I had been asleep. My bedroom window was open and shining a morning glow on my face, dulling my perceptions. I was sitting upright on my own bed. Mattress, linen sheets, and plush quilt were all accounted for. I looked to my side, expecting to see my wife, Jewel, but her side of the bed was made up.

    I looked through the open door of the room and past the hall where I saw a figure pass in and out of view. Slowly, for I was still weak with drowsiness, I slid my legs out until my feet dangled freely. Supporting myself with my arms, I placed both feet firmly on the floor and stood. Small, indistinguishable impressions were left in the soft carpet as I made my way out of the room and past the unadorned walls of the hallway. I could see her walk across the doorway from one side of the kitchen to the other, in sight and out again. Soon, I had stepped onto the tile flooring myself.

    I looked about. Counters were lined with dirty pots and pans, flowers rested upon the table, and the figure of a woman with her back to me was pouring coffee into a yellow mug, auburn hair hanging loose. She turned, and a bright white smile lit up her face.

    “Well, good morning, sleepyhead!” She walked over to where I was as I returned her smile. I wrapped my arms around her neck and kissed her gently on the lips. She lifted the drink. “Coffee?” My fingers closed around the mug, and she loosened her grip.

    “Thank you,” I said gratefully as she turned back to the machine for her own cup. I sat in a chair and stared out the window into our garden. The smooth, brown wood felt good on my wrist as I set my arms on the table.

    “You had quite a restless night,” she said, coming to join me. She took her seat across from me. “Have any bad dreams?” she asked.

    Images flashed in my mind at once, though not as one would ordinarily think they would. They intruded upon my mind until they were all I could see. No more could I see Jewel. In her place, I saw a boxed room filled with an eerie white light, and there was darkness—terrible, unrelenting darkness—suspending cold, icy eyes. I stared at them, terrified. They suddenly swelled, and a roar pierced through the vision thoroughly shaking me. It melted away until the only thing left was my wife, staring at me as if in reminder to her unanswered question.

    “Yeah,” I said uneasily, lifting the mug to my lips. “Bad dreams.”

    “Well, in that case, I’m sorry I let you sleep so late,” she said in heartfelt apology. She grasped my hand affectionately. It felt so warm, so comfortable, and I squeezed it fondly.

    I looked outside to try and see how high the sun was, but it was nowhere to be found. “What time is it?”

    “Nearly ten,” she replied, taking a sip of her drink.

    I nearly stood up, frantic. “Shouldn’t I be at work right now?!”

    She squeezed my hand tighter and shook her head as she swallowed. “It’s your day off, remember?” She chuckled. "You're awfully jumpy this morning." At once I felt more at ease.

    “Such strange dreams, they were,” I muttered to myself, trying to remember certain aspects as one often does after waking up. I couldn’t seem to recall anything though. However, one thought, or sound rather, that did well up in me was that of two terrified wails that seemed to come from far off. They seemed somehow... vaguely familiar. I felt as though I knew the people to whom those cries belonged, and needed to help them.

    My mind clicked back. “Where are the kids?” I asked.

    Jewel shot me an odd glance. “What?”

    “Dianne’s kids, where are they?” I said anxiously. This time, I did stand up. I looked about myself confoundedly as though they should be walking into the room at any moment.

    Her face did not show any comprehension of the question, but worry began crowding out curiosity. “Kyle, who are you talking about?”

    The cries grew louder and I seemed to be able to locate their point of origin now. Ignoring Jewel, I scurried to the parlor. “They’re outside.” I hurried my pace and was soon wrenching open the doors to the patio.

    “Kyle!” Jewel called after me, but I didn’t pay any heed to her. However, no sooner had my feet met grass than the voices subsided. Was I going insane?

    I thought hard. Something wasn't right. Something was… missing. The Pokémon! I though. Where are they? Back in the house I went, all but forgetting the thoughts which had occupied me only a moment before. I looked around the room and back towards the kitchen.

    Jewel grabbed my wrists and led me back towards the table. “Honey,” she said pleadingly, clearly shaken by my behavior. “What’s going on? You’re scaring me.”

    I was going to explain it to her, going to tell her what was wrong, how nothing was making sense. Didn't she see it herself? Shouldn't she sense it already? But then I remembered it. I broke free of her grasp and staggered backward, shaking my head. She was frightened, oh how she looked frightened.

    I took a few moments to breathe.

    What!?” she begged of me.

    I looked at her sorrowfully, not wanting to think of it any more, but it was too late.

    “Jewel,” I said. “I'm not supposed to be here... that is to say… I'm… not.” I lost myself in a daze. “This isn’t… this can’t be…”

    Instantaneously, the wails erupted again, but now they were in the room directly behind me. I turned, caught completely off guard, but the room was empty. The screaming continued, but a third voice had joined them. I whirled to face Jewel. I took a few steps back, for though it was still her, Jewel was almost unrecognizable. Her mouth was wide open, and her face contorted as if she were in great pain. She was screaming as I had heard her scream only once before.

    I knew that face; I knew those sounds of panic. Rushing forward, the only thought going through my mind was that I would save her this time. I was at her side now and grabbed her hands in mine.

    Those hands however, were jerked away from me the moment I touched them. Her whole body was flung backward through counter, cabinet, and wall into a void of black. It happened so suddenly that my mind at first rejected it altogether. The gaping whole she left looked bent at the edges as of metal when it is torn. As I stood motionless, the noises continued their haunted cry and the hole grew larger, enveloping more of the room. Appliances, wallpaper, and marble slabs were dented and rolled back into the blackness as if they were nothing more than tin foil, but they were not rolled back smoothly and quietly. Rather, they were viciously and jerkily ripped with the sound of creaking steel. Noise—it was coming from everywhere: screaming, ripping, shattering, creaking… I even heard a howling wind that pulled me towards the darkness.

    I ran from the room as it began to shrink into nothingness and tried to escape through the open parlor doors. These swung shut of their own accord before I reached them, effectively trapping me. I pounded my fists against the glass, hoping to break through, but I could not even crack it. Before I knew what was happening, the ground beneath my feet gave way and I clung to the door handle for dear life. I watched, horrified as my world melted back. The handle bent one way, then another, and wrenched itself free from me. My last glimpse was of the blue sky outside the window, but that too folded back until there was nothing more to see.

    All disappeared from sight, thought, and consciousness, but the screams stayed on in a horrid echo. A rugged substance seemed to press into my side and face as the rest of me was suddenly chilled.



    All vanished…



    All was meaningless…



    The hollow feeling of falling filled my chest as I was swept into a state of exposure and vulnerability.



    But the screams stayed…



    Those screams…





























    I landed.




















    My body lurched upward with a gasping cry, and I bolted up, legs wobbling. Gravity swayed between that of my dream and that of this world and steadily was brought to a still. John and Heath looked up at me for a moment, but returned to whatever was occupying them upon finding I was in no real need of assistance.

    My body ached with the feeling one has after sleeping on the ground, and I shook my numb arm in an attempt to wake it up. It didn’t take long for my senses to get a grip once more. One of the first things to hit me was a small pang in my stomach telling me I was hungry. I glanced at the two men, thought about it, and looked elsewhere, deciding that any contact with them that could be avoided ought to be.

    To my left was a small area of the room filled with two metal cabinets, a wooden cabinet, and a miniature refrigerator. I wrapped myself in my blanket for warmth and trod over. I decided to look through the cabinets first and see what each contained before taking something for myself.

    I grabbed the handle of the metal one to the far right and pulled it open. I shut it almost immediately, eyes wide. Inside was a massive arsenal of guns, small and large, many orb-shaped objects, and one wall even held an assortment of knives. Had I known more at the time about these things, I might have recognized them as military grade weaponry. I decided in a hurry not to look through the second metal case, but I did have the courage to search the wooden one. The result was and apple, a bag of miniature muffins, and a bottle of water. With this scavenging victory, I retreated to the couch on which I had slept without looking through the fridge.

    The muffins were sweet and sticky, but not at all in a good way, and I only ate two out of the three, washing it down with the water. I looked down to my side. Both of my Pokéballs sat there, glaring at me, willing themselves to be set free. At that point, I decided that there was no more putting it off. I picked one up and pressed the button.

    Persian materialized in a beam of red. This, unlike all of my previous morning activity, got the attention of the other two men. The cat materialized, and I prepared for the worst.

    Unfortunately, this is exactly what I received.

    The first thing she did upon emerging was lash out with great swipes of her paws. I guessed at once that she had been let out at some point during my imprisonment. She bared her teeth and let loose a blood-curdling cat-scream. I fell back at once into the couch, and John and Heath both dropped what they were doing to come to my aid. Since she missed with her first strikes, she ended up nearly on top of me, one forearm on ear side, and hissed to try and intimidate me. I was horrified, for never in all her years had I seen Persian act this way, but her eyes are what really got to me. They were angry, fierce, and even wild. I was afraid that she wouldn't know who I was, and that would be the end of me then and there. Fortunately, her eyes softened once she got a good look at me. Her mouth closed, and she cocked her head to one side.

    "Persian?" I asked, tentatively. She licked my face, and the tension loosed its hold on my body. "Yeah," I said quietly, rubbing her back. "I missed you too."

    "You alright?" John asked.

    "Yeah," I replied, not as though I thought he cared.


    In a matter of hours, both of the Pokémon were out and seemed to have their wits back about them. I particularly thought that Persian, who was never comfortable around strangers or strange places, was doing well. She was a bundle of nerves, to be sure, but a contained bundle of nerves. She would walk slowly around the room, sniffing each piece of furniture, every wire—at least I’d trained her not to bite them, and both the new people. She’d cautiously approach Heath or John and then leap back the moment they made the slightest movement.

    Porygon, however, was not so shy, or if it was, it was far more curious. Each new inch was something to examine, learn about, or bash into repeatedly with its head—an odd habit; we never quite figured out why it did it. It seemed most satisfied watching the two men who were working diligently at their mess of wires and screens.

    John owned two Pokémon, a Magnezone and a Pidgeot. I learned that the two would spend most of their time topside unless it rained. Pidgeot would come in through the opening in the roof when that happened, but Magnezone preferred the helicopter hangar. I hadn't seen either of them yet, but John had told me all about them. Whatever kind of man he was, his Pokemon were his companions, and he cared for them very much.

    Heath didn’t have any Pokémon, unless one counted his “understanding” with Lugia. It was still amazing to me. How could he look at that creature without seeing the same thing everyone else sees? But then, Heath gave no indication of being any kind of normal. I wasn't quite sure what the situation was with Lugia, but I was going to find out.

    As strange as it might seem, I wanted to see her again. As long as I knew she wasn’t going to kill me (supposing Heath was telling the truth, and supposing he knew as much as he thought he did), my fear was somewhat dissipated. After all, how often does one get to live in close proximity with an avian legend?


    By midday, Heath was sitting at a desk inputting what I recognized to be a code for some sort of tracing signal on one of their computers. They had probably stolen the lot of them. John has messing with the computer’s wires cutting and splicing to a set against the wall that ran along it all the way to the hole in the ceiling.

    “What are you doing?” I asked. Aside from what I could make out on the screens, I hadn't a clue as to what they'd been so busy about this morning—I'd always been more of a software person than a hardware one.

    “Just setting up for a meeting,” John replied cheerfully. His strong back arched as he leaned down to closer inspect his work.

    A wide eyed Persian walked to my side, and I scratched her lovingly between the ears. “With who?”

    “A friend of ours who’s been helping us find the System sent us a wave with a message to meet him,” Heath said without turning. “He wouldn’t have done so if it wasn’t urgent.”

    “Why not?” As much as I didn’t like being caught up in it, I was curious about this whole line of work.

    Heath continued typing as he spoke. “One thing you always need to keep in mind is that when you are a hacker, someone is usually trying to hack you."

    Clang!

    The monitor rustled, and I shot a glance at Porygon. It lowered its head and hit the desk again.

    Clang!

    "Hey! Stop it, you… duck… thing!" Heath said, very annoyed and at a loss for description.

    "Polly," I said. "Over here." The Pokemon gave the desk one last smack before reluctantly hovering over.

    John chuckled. "Little menace," Heath said under his breath. "So, as I was saying, making contact is very risky. What we’re doing here,” he motioned to all the equipment, “we have to redo every time we power up. It’s so that we never use the exact same method twice; makes it nearly impossible to track.”

    “You ready?” John said, looking at Heath.

    “Just about.” He typed in a final line. “Okay, hit it!”

    The wires John had been working with ran through an upright lever before continuing up the wall. As soon as he got the green light, he switched it down, and Heath pressed the execute button.

    The screen went black; at first, only a single line of text appeared at its top.















    SEARCHING FOR SIGNAL… … … … … … … …















    We waited for it to do something. Heath started tapping his knuckles on the desk.















    SEARCHING FOR SIGNAL… … … … … … …




















    … … … … … … … … … … … SIGNAL FOUND!


    LOCATING SOURCE… … … … … … …



















    … … … … … … … … SOURCE LOCATED!




    RESULT…
    ID: RICHARDPOE3488902CORNERSTONEHARDWARE
    LOCATION: 34893 IVORY LANE, CIANWOOD





    “That’s him!” Heath said triumphantly. He scribbled the address onto a slip of paper and in seconds told John, “Shut it down.”

    John switched the lever back and unplugged the wires from the main computer, including the battery, so it powered off. Heath grabbed his pack and a pistol which I eyed warily.

    “Come on, we don’t want to be late,” John said as he passed me, grabbing a long bag.

    I watched the two of them as they headed for the second exit. “I’m…” I started to say.

    “Oh,” Heath shouted back as he screwed on a silencer. “Bring your Pokémon. You never know what may happen.”

    Not even bothering to protest (for what point could there possibly have been in it), I grabbed my Pokéballs , withdrew Persian and Polly, and sighed. Here we go.

    ---__-------__--___--__--_--_-------------------
    ----|__--\_/-|__---|--|__-|-\/-|---In the Tunnel----
    ------___|--|--___|--|--|__-|----|----------------------

    It wasn’t my first time in the tunnel, but the previous venture had been made in haste without a second glance at the passage itself. It was circular in shape and craggy in texture. I was no expert and didn’t know if that meant it had been dug out or worn away by erosion; I could care less. Everything was black, the most foreboding black I had ever seen. Even the water looked the same dark shade, because there was nothing but more of the same underneath and above it.

    All was still except for the hushed ping of water droplets, the steady of running of water beside us, and the distant roar of far away waterfalls. The awe-striking song that I'd heard the night before—Lugia’s song— from far off in the labyrinth would often fill you to the top with sound and then pierce your every conscious nerve when the beast broke the surface of the water. Luckily, this sensation only occurred in short intervals. The only other Pokémon to be found were the occasional Dewgong or curious Seel playfully splashing each other or a Zubat or Golbat drifting overhead, invisible in the unlit abyss. The two told me it would be a bad idea to point a light up there; they didn’t take kindly to being disturbed.

    After about ten minutes of steady walking, our path became illuminated, not by more florescent glows or yellow glares, but by real light—sunlight! As we approached the exit, I could see that a fairly high, but not impassable, wall of rock separated the fresh water current inside the island from the waves on the other side.

    The sun, which first promised to be a welcome relief, instantly turned to glaring nuisance. My eyes simply refused to adjust, and the rhythmic waves, tossing its light every which way it willed, didn’t help matters in the slightest. Through squinting eyes, I could catch glimpses of a small motorboat, held in a pocket of the now very familiar rock formations and chained to the island. I managed to block most of the light with a cupped hand and clambered into it. Within moments, the boat was maneuvering out of reach of the island and into the cantankerous arms of the waves.

    Though I couldn’t look up, a bird’s cry told me that John’s Pidgeot was following overhead.

    We closed in on the shore and docked in Cianwood harbor along many other privately owned sea craft of varying shapes and sizes. Heath began to tie The Flicker, for that was the boat’s name, to the small wooden walkway.

    "This is one of the reserved docks," John told me, "for private boats. In the harbor's books, this station is owned by Dr. Joseph Burgam. We wire the money from his account to the harbor whenever payments need to be made, then we erase the transfer from the good doctor’s computer and tack on a few dollars to a few of his other purchases to make up for the money loss. Since we set his PC to filter the notification messages as junk mail, he'll never know."

    “And we get this choice piece of bound planks and wooden stakes,” Heath pitched in dryly.

    There was a small pad on a stand sitting at the end of the dock with a long cable running out of it. Heath took the end of the cable and plugged it into a slot on the nose of the boat. He then typed in a few digits on a numeric keypad. The responsive musical note told him it was locked.

    Heath saw me eyeing him curiously. "It's a security system used on nearly all docks nowadays." He explained. "The station creates a connection to the boat through the wire. If the connection is cut or the engine is started, it sets off the alarm."

    “Now then, Gentlemen,” Heath’s eyes began to sparkle with anticipation, “let’s go pay Mr. Poe a visit.”

    ---__-------__--___--__--_--_----------------------
    ----|__--\_/-|__---|--|__-|-\/-|---34893 Ivory Lane----
    ------___|--|--___|--|--|__-|----|-------------------------

    Mr. Poe’s house—or it may not have been his house, I never knew—was some ways off from the main town. Since we first had to find out where it was and then travel the whole way on foot because “we couldn’t risk a car,” it was a very long and dull trip. The sun was already melting on the tops of the mountains beyond Cianwood by the time we were there. You even had to follow a long gravel path past a circle of trees that hid it from the main road. It was, in every possible way, remote.

    As we approached the building, Hike remained perfectly calm, but if you could look beyond his face, deeper, there was unmistakable excitement. He truly believed that behind this door was something that would be crucial in finding the System. Every piece of information found is like a treasure in and of itself, no one part less important than the whole.

    I can’t imagine that what we found was what he expected, but, if I ever learned anything about Heath Vice, it is that what he expects and what he prepares for do not have to resemble one another in the slightest.

    The hinges of the door let us past without a whine of greeting. The lights were off, everything was still. The room was finely furnished in all the modern fixings… but untouched. It was as if we were in a museum, and the ghostly stillness whispered warnings from the walls.

    We should not be here.

    We walked into the kitchen, just as still as the entryway. Tiles gleamed with gold from the window. A half-consumed glass of milk lay on the table next to a folded newspaper open to the crossword page. They were signs of life, but still not comforting. It appeared hastily abandoned.

    The kitchen had a door leading to a small office. As the door swung open, the sight I took in is one I shall always remember, because that is where I began to see how much danger all of us were truly in.

    The light was on, and a man—bound, gagged, and blindfolded—was sitting upright in a chair. Another man was standing a few feet from him clad in white and sporting a head of silky black hair. His face was calm but held a nearly smirking disposition.

    “Welcome,” he said casually. “It took you so long to get here after I heard the door shut that I began thinking you had attempted to run off.” The three of us stood silently, just through the door. He raised an eyebrow playfully. “Didn’t you know we were here?”

    Heath answered. “Once we entered, yes, but I figured you would have rigged the door with explosives if you had meant to kill us.”

    “Ah,” He said, smiling (needless to say, a smile never came close to touching my face). “Spoken like the man I was hoping to meet. You are correct, and, as you can see, I am not even armed. I don’t believe we’ve been properly introduced. Not very fair, as I already know who you are.”

    “I think it’s a fair bet you don’t know me as well as you think,” Heath replied, unflinching.

    The man ignored him. “I am Legion; that is all you ever need know. And you are Heath Vice, John York, and …ah! I can only assume that this is Kyle Wade.” His eyes met mine and I shivered. “How delightful!” He addressed us as a group again, “You three are probably wondering where you slipped, no doubt.”

    “It teased us a bit,” John replied straight-faced, as Heath had. I was doing my best not to get lost.

    “It was your relation to our dear Richard Poe,” he said motioning to the unmoving man. “We have been monitoring him for some time now, but as soon as he set up this meeting with you…” he chuckled gleefully. ”Tell me, how could you expect us to pass that up?"

    "We have been looking for you everywhere, and—at last—here you are!” He looked at me again. I must have been shaking, for he next asked, “Are you afraid?”

    “Aren’t you?” Heath replied quickly, possibly afraid I'd open my mouth. “Afraid that we’ll kill you, I mean?”

    He shook his head. “I have already told you: I’m unarmed. We mean to take you in peacefully. You must have realized that there are men surrounding this building as we speak. I know that you aren’t foolish enough to…”

    The man never finished his sentence. With a short click, a perfectly round hole sat between his eyes where skin had been an instant before. It quickly spat out blood as the lifeless body fell backward with impact. He crashed into a potted plant and lay on the floor.

    Heath lowered his gun and slipped it back into a holster hidden by his jacket. “Like I said, sir," he told the dead man on the ground. "You don’t know me.” Immediately, he bent over and began searching him. “John,” he said softly over his shoulder, “get Mr. Poe’s hard drive. Kyle, untie our friend.” I was still shell-shocked, and stared into the gaping wound that continued supplying a steady flow of red to the carpet. Heath turned his head and repeated sternly, “Kyle!”

    I jumped back to my senses and walked to the bound man. I took off the blindfold. His eyes frightened me when I first saw them. They were hazy, but still moved with some sort of force behind them.

    I removed the gag, exposing bloodstained lips. A raspy voice cried out to me, “Pa- a- per!” At first I didn’t understand. I thought he wanted me to help him write something down, but I couldn't be sure.

    “What do you…“ I stated to say.

    NO!” the voice wheezed. “Th- the c- c- cr-“ blood spurted onto his chin. “Crossw-“ He gasped and his eyes widened.

    I tried to think. Crossw- Crossw- Crossword! Paper! The newspaper! I turned and looked at the kitchen, then back at the dying man.

    “Quick,” I told Heath, who had just gotten up, “Help me get him upright.” I reached behind him and quickly drew back my hand. It was coated in blood! Heath bent him over exposing a scarlet-soaked back. He had been bleeding to death the entire time! A final breath of air spilled from his lips as the man became limp. I drew back, my gag reflex taking hold of me. I spun into the hall and leaned over.

    John saw what we were looking at. “Hurry,” he told us with urgency. “He’s already dead. If we have everything, then we have to get out of here. We’re already going to have a tough time getting out as it is, and we don’t want to have to get past any more armed agents than we have to.”

    I knew he was right, but found it hard to move. “Crossword,” I said, straightening up. “He wants us to get the crossword.”

    “We’ll grab it on the way out,” Heath said. He leaned the body back against the chair, taking in the dull emptiness emitting from the eyes. He slid his fingers across the face, pulling the eyelids down. Without any final word or nod in reverence, the three of us departed as quickly as possible from the room leaving the two corpses once known as Legion and Richard Poe.

    Both sides had shed blood. We were no longer merely a pest; we were the enemy. It had begun.

    Dear God, why me?



    Chapter End



    So there you go. I'm not sure how quickly chapters will be coming, as I'm starting work on a rewrite of my origional fic to be posted here at some point. However, I'm still planning on finishing this, so not to worry. Please read and review, and I'll try and respond to your comments!

    Good Fortune!
    Last edited by Sireath; 19th June 2008 at 8:06 PM.

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  23. #23
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    It's great to see this back!

    The story continues on a great line, the vague resemblence to Live Free or Die Hard still there, but it's not hurting the story.

    YAY FOR CUTE PORYGON RANDOMNESS. That part was incredible.

    Overall, another great chapter, and good to have you back!

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  24. #24
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    The Great Butler: Yes, Polly shall get yew!!! The Porygon is going to a lighthearted little tyke. Much fun.

    Anyway, I've acutally seen Live Free or Die Hard now, so I know what you're talking about. It is pretty similar, I suppose, but definitely different. LOVED the movie by the way .

    I'm glad you like this chapter. The next one's going to be a bit more actiony. Lots of Sci-Fi-ish weaponry, a chase scene, and (of course) Pokemon fighting. Still working out the final scene or so (note that it's still just the first draft).

    Good Fortune!
    Last edited by Sireath; 19th June 2008 at 8:41 PM.

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