Favorite fic eva! not that I know much...
Favorite fic eva! not that I know much...
Hello, all. EM1 here.
When I came back about twenty-four hours after I posted the first chapter and saw about five replies, as well as about a hundred views, I thought, “Damn. Looks like I got somebody’s attention.”
Now here comes the hard part – to see if I can keep it.
Chapter 2: Adversary
May 16, PA 2013 – Oldale Town, Hoenn
Travis’ eyes snapped open to a sharp rapping on his door, jarring him rather mercilessly back to reality. In his dreams, his mind had gone back to his battle with Brandon in the Azalea Town Gym nearly two years ago at this time. If there was anytime he was on top of his game, it had been then.
“Hey, what’s goin’ on?” he muttered sleepily, sitting up. He was about to jump out of bed, but thought better of it as he realized that he would have had to face a drop of several feet that he simply wasn’t ready for at the time. Instead, his knees, clothed in red pajama pants that he had brought from home, now dangled over the edge of his lofted bed. Both beds in the room of this small Pokémon Center were lofted, actually. Each sat against a wall. On a third wall, slightly below him, was a window, out of which a good portion of Oldale Town could be seen – which wasn’t really saying much, seeing as Oldale was probably the smallest settlement that Hoenn had to offer. On a fourth wall –
On a fourth wall was a wooden door, which was currently vibrating with the impact of someone on the other side hitting it. Soon after this last sound of contact, Travis heard a young woman speaking in as much of a scolding tone as her sweet voice could manage.
“Chansey, stop that!”
Groaning, Travis leapt from the bed. His feet landed softly on the center of the Pokéball that was woven into this teal carpet. Just as this happened, the girl on the opposite side of the bed started to stir. With a sleepy and slightly annoyed expression on her face, she flicked some of her long, pink hair out of her eyes and leapt off of the bed, tearing straight for the restroom that was right next to Travis’ bed and closing the door.
“Chansey!!” Travis heard the woman yell and recognized her voice from yesterday. This was Nurse Joy. When Travis found out that there were Nurse Joys in Hoenn as well, he was somehow relieved and unnerved at the same time.
“<Hrmf...what the heck?>” behind Travis, an Umbreon sprang to life from his sleeping position on the floor. The Espeon, surprisingly enough, was slower to get up. Travis’ patience had run out. Tearing toward the door, he turned the knob, releasing the piece of his mind that he’d intended to.
“You don’t just go banging on someone’s door at seven in the morning and – oh...” Travis stood framed in his own doorway and found himself looking into the eyes of a young woman of about twenty with reddish-pink hair and wearing a white nurse’s outfit. Cowering behind her, trying and failing to cover her own pink mass with the woman’s slender legs, was a Chansey in a nurse’s hat.
“I’m sorry about that,” Nurse Joy said penitently. “We meant to wake you a bit more...gently. Were you expecting a call from Prof. Birch down in Littleroot?”
“Er...no, not really,” Travis replied.
“Well, he’s on the line. Says you forgot a couple of things,” Nurse Joy stated. “Should I take a message?”
“No – we’re all up, now...” Travis sighed. Looking at the shut bathroom door and back at the nurse, he said, “Tell him to call back at...eight, I guess. It’s seven right now, right?”
“Quarter after,” Nurse Joy replied.
“Good enough,” Travis said. “We should be ready by eight.”
“Alright, then,” Nurse Joy said, walking off. “Come on, Chansey...”
The pink blob with the egg in her pouch waddled behind the petite, young nurse until they were both out of sight. Shaking his head and frowning, Travis stepped inside, closing the door. Travis grabbed his clothes and towel out of a small closet. As soon as he did that, the door to the restroom turned open, revealing Katrina, who was wearing a small t-shirt and shorts for her sleepwear, and now smelled strongly of flowers.
“Morning,” she said briskly, immediately pecking Travis on the cheek and causing him to feel even more self-conscious about the fact that he hadn’t showered yet.
“Geez, that was quick,” he said. “You took, like, three minutes.”
“That’s because I thought there was something urgent going on,” Katrina replied. “What was all that about, anyway?”
“That was a Chansey bouncing off of our door,” Travis said bluntly. Then, accelerating his pattern of speech a bit, he added, “Apparently, we forgot something at Prof. Birch’s...I don’t know what – we didn’t take anything out of our bags...and Angel and Crescent are with us...never mind. I told Nurse Joy to tell Prof. Birch to call us back at eight sharp, which means we’ve got exactly...forty-two minutes to get dressed and hopefully get a bite before he’s on the line again.”
“Great,” Katrina said semi-sarcastically as Travis walked past her for the bathroom door. Just as he was about to open it himself, Katrina let out a giggle.
Travis turned around. “What?”
“Nothing,” Katrina said, smiling and looking the other way. “I’m not sure if you paid any attention...but last night was our first time staying in the same room...ever.”
“Eh...” Travis uttered a bit stupidly. He hadn’t even realized that.
“Awkward, huh?” Katrina said.
“Not really...” Travis answered honestly. It took a couple of seconds before it actually hit him that it hadn’t been awkward at all.
“That’s the right answer,” Katrina replied with a smile.
Travis backed through the doorway, closing it.
~~~ *** ~~~
Travis emerged from the bathroom fully dressed what he thought was five minutes later. Sitting in a chair on the other side of the room with her arms folded was Katrina, while Angel was at his legs already.
“<Again, way too slow...>” she commented.
“Wha...?” Travis uttered a bit dimly. He looked to his left at the clock.
Travis heaved a sigh. “Damn it,” he swore. “Looks like breakfast’ll have to wait.”
Travis jumped the last couple of stairs and landed on the ground floor. The scabbard of his sword, unfortunately (up to this point, Nurse Joy hadn’t asked him any questions about it), smashed into the wall, waking Nurse Joy out of what seemed to be a semi-stupor just as she heard a ringing sound behind her. Travis rather liked the set-up of the Oldale Pokémon Center. It was actually a lot like the one in Cherrygrove City, except substantially smaller. There was a restaurant bar (the restaurant was just opening for breakfast), as well as a small lounge area. In the center, of course, was business – a circular ring of desk inside which Nurse Joy sat. On one side on a straight line from this desk, which was at the center of this atrium-like room, was the exit, complete with sliding doors. On the other side, of course, was the operating room that was used for the more serious Pokémon injuries.
“Travis,” Nurse Joy said briskly, “the phone –“
“I know, I know...” Travis muttered as he approached the videophone on the far side of the room, Katrina, Angel, and Crescent not far behind him. He picked it up. On the screen, obviously in his lab, was a quite large, brown-haired man in a white lab coat.
“Travis! Katrina! How are you?” the Professor asked jovially. “Did you sleep well?”
“Right up until Nurse Joy’s Chansey tried to knock down our door,” Travis replied. “How are you?”
“I’m doing just fine, thank you,” Professor Birch answered. “I’m calling because I’ve got two things to give you all.”
“To give us...how?” Travis asked.
“I can wire them – just like you’d wire extra Pokémon or items through a computer,” Birch replied.
“Computer?” Travis repeated. Then, turning his head, he asked, “Nurse Joy! Where can we find a computer?”
“You’re sitting at one,” Nurse Joy responded. Travis looked down and, indeed, on a pull-out shelf of sorts, were a keyboard and a mouse.
“Okay...” he said, feeling a bit foolish. “So...what exactly did we forget?”
“You didn’t forget the first thing, actually. I got it yesterday afternoon after you guys were gone already,” Birch said. “A guy at Ericsson by the name of Drew wanted me to send something to you.”
Katrina’s ears perked up quicker than a Snorlax when it hears the word ‘food’.
“What is it?” Katrina asked.
“Let me send it to you. You won’t know what I’m talking about otherwise,” Professor Birch explained.
Birch pressed a button of sorts that was outside of the confines of the screen through which Travis was watching him. About ten seconds later, a white glow of light emanated from a strange, disk-like semicircle that was sitting next to the computer and had several wires coming from it. This light formed into a rectangle. When the light faded, inside the dish sat a box-like contraption with a hinge on its back that said all too clearly that it flipped open. Travis grabbed it and did so with Katrina intently watching. What he saw was an array of buttons on its face, as well as a slot for a stylus that was wired into the bottom half of the small, computer-like device. On the top was a separate screen that was about five inches by seven inches – about the size of a rather large index card.
“That’s the Ericsson Pokémon Navigator, Version 10.0,” Birch explained. “Or the PokéNav-X for short.”
“Version ten? That’s not supposed to come out until next month!” Travis commented. Turning back and looking at Katrina, he added uncertainly, “Right?”
“Right...” Katrina stared at the contraption rather blankly. “Professor Birch...you didn’t happen to ask this Drew guy what his last name was, did you?”
“Um...no,” Birch replied. “But I know he had black hair.”
Katrina smiled. “Dad actually paid some attention for once...”
“That was your father – as in, E.I.’s president?” Birch said incredulously. Slapping his head at his own failure to recognize the man, he exclaimed, “I should have known! No common clerk would have one of those – not to mention they sure as heck wouldn’t send it to a couple of kids on another continent!”
“So...what does it do?” Travis asked.
“Well, from what he told me, you can’t get much more cutting-edge than the PokéNav-X...and for E.I., that’s saying something,” Birch commented.
“Sounds like something my father would say,” Katrina laughed.
“Well, it’s obviously got the essentials – a satellite GPS, of course,” Birch explained. “So you’ll know where you are at all times. Time, date, all that good stuff. Even the weather forecast, so you’ll know when to break out the rain gear. That’s really useful – Hoenn’s got a couple of spots that are kind of on the tropical side as far as climate is concerned. Oh, and they threw in a digital camera.”
“A digital camera,” Travis said, his mouth dropping slightly. “It’s seriously got a digital camera?”
“Wow...” Katrina said, sounding awestruck. This surprised Travis a bit, as it wasn’t often that Katrina sounded awestruck. “We’re definitely making a scrapbook.”
Travis laughed and handed the PokéNav-X to Katrina, who began to put it in her backpack.
“That’s number one,” Birch said. “Number two...you guys were so excited that you ran out of here without your Pokédexes.”
“We’ve already got Pokédexes,” Travis commented.
“They came out in 2011, right?” Birch inquired.
“Actually,” Travis said a bit sheepishly, “2010.”
“Yeah. Thought so,” Birch said. “Way out of date. This one, on the other hand, has information on more than five hundred Pokémon...”
“Five hundred?!” Travis exclaimed. “When I checked back in January with Professor Elm, he said that they could only for sure confirm the existence of 480 or so, not counting legendaries...and about a fourth of those can only be found on Sinnoh, which is only about a world away.”
“Well, it’s somewhere around the order of about 510 or 520,” Birch said. Travis’ eyes went wide for a second.
“Yeesh...four months can make a lot of difference,” Travis commented.
“Yeah...a lot of these new species have been found right here in Hoenn, within the last year,” Birch commented. “So I think you’ll be having a lot of fun with these. Here you go.”
In a matter of seconds, two shiny, new Pokédexes were in the small dish beside the computer. They looked pretty much like the ‘Advance Generation’ Pokédex that Travis had received in 2011. Those, technically, were not intended to journey farther than Hoenn, as they had only been programmed with information on less than four hundred Pokémon, not counting those that were known to exist in Sinnoh. Instead of red skins, however, one was a navy-blue, and one was pink.
“I guess we won’t get ours mixed up, then,” Katrina commented. “You get the pink one.”
“Hey!” Travis exclaimed, taking the navy blue one instead. Katrina laughed and took the pink Pokédex herself. Birch looked like he was rather busy and about to sign out, but Travis had one last question for him. “Hey, Professor...what type does Stella use? Do you know?”
“Normal-type, as far as I’d heard,” Birch replied.
“Oh, alright,” Travis said, noting in the back of his head the trouble he’d had with a Normal-type Gym Leader during his journey in Johto.
“Well, if that’s all, I’ve got some field work to do,” Birch said. “Good luck!”
“Thanks,” Travis replied, pushing the button to end the call. Birch’s picture was instantly wiped from the face of the screen, leaving only a dot of bright, white light behind.
“Can’t beat new gadgets,” Katrina commented.
“I know one thing that could beat them,” Travis answered, his hand to his stomach. “Breakfast.”
~~~ *** ~~~
Ten minutes later, Travis was halfway through a sausage biscuit and a small berry smoothie that he had elected to try, as he heard that berry smoothies and drinks were...’berry’ popular among the residents of Hoenn. (Hey, don’t blame us – it was on the pamphlet.)
“Whew!” Travis said, sighing after taking in a large gulp of his Oran Berry smoothie. “Been a while since I had a really good breakfast.”
“I thought your mom was a really good cook,” Katrina commented.
“She is...except, back before Kylie was born, she actually had time and energy to cook things...well,” Travis said. “By the time it was time for us to go, I was so over bag lunches. I had to eat bag lunches...at home, Katrina.”
“Well, maybe you should learn how to cook, like me,” Katrina said with a wry smile. “I started cooking for both me and Mom and actually found that I enjoy it.”
“Your mom’s too busy to cook, right?” Travis asked.
“No – she sucks at it,” Katrina said, nearly causing Travis to spit Oran Berry smoothie through his nose with her candor. “And she’s too busy.”
“I guess she would be, running a fashion design business completely from home,” Travis commented. “How does she pull that off?”
“About half of the first floor is her office,” Katrina responded, drinking a bit of her own smoothie (she chose Pecha Berry). “...that, and a damn good computer.”
“Ha ha...” Travis laughed. “So...I never asked you. Do you have a favorite type?”
“Type?” Katrina batted her eyelashes flirtatiously. “Of course I do. It’s you.”
“I meant Pokémon, but thanks anyway,” Travis replied wittily, his face a bit pink. After nearly two years of being together, Katrina had this effect on him more than ever, as she had been even more (even compared to when they had just started going out) direct about what she thought of him.
“Oh,” Katrina giggled. “I never thought about it before. I guess I don’t, really...”
“Me, either...” Travis said. “I know there’s a couple of types I don’t like...like Poison, for example. Their attacks have a tendency to backfire a little bit too much for me.”
“True,” Katrina replied. “You try a Smokescreen into a wind, and...well, you’ve got smoke in your eye.”
“Which hurts like hell, by the way,” Travis added. He was remembering in particular an incident in late October when his mother had actually tried to fix a meal for the family. Of course, Kylie was being as cooperative as possible, screaming at the top of her lungs just as Travis took the pot off. The result – smoke in his eyes, long story short. He couldn’t see straight for the rest of the day. “It was really weird, actually, that time...Mom must’ve had something really strong in that soup. I saw, like, floating Starmie for the rest of the day.”
Katrina tried hard not to burst into laughter. “Floating Starmie?”
“That’s what I said...Floating stupid Starmie...like somebody’d knocked me out cold,” Travis said, coolly taking a sip of his smoothie. “Yeah...if Mom was taking anything for stress at that point, then it sure got into the soup somehow. Probably lucky that stuff burned, actually...”
“Yeah,” Katrina laughed. She started to stare at Travis’ face. Travis raised an eyebrow at her. “You’ve got something on your lip, just right...oh, never mind...”
She was leaning over the table. Seconds later, Travis felt a slightly-wetter-than-usual kiss toward the left side of his lips. As she drew back, Travis could have sworn he heard somebody muttering under his breath. In about an instant, Katrina looked like she’d just gotten the smile knocked off of her face. Looking askance at a booth a few seats down, she muttered, “Hold on a second.”
She stood up and strode over to where she saw a boy in a black, gold-trimmed skullcap. She couldn’t get a good look at his face, though, as it was locked very tightly around the face of a girl with a black ponytail. Katrina watched them go at it for about ten seconds, then let out a laugh.
“You damned hypocrite,” she said. “And you were back here, muttering that we should get a room?”
The boy and girl broke apart ever so gradually.
“You enjoying standing there and staring?” the boy said harshly. “Take a picture, it’ll last longer.”
“I have a camera,” Katrina said curtly. “So don’t tempt me.”
The boy leapt out of his booth, revealing his full body. At first glance, he looked to be about Travis’ height. Tall and slim, he wore a black skullcap that was trimmed with a golden-beige sort of color. Over a black shirt, he wore a golden-beige jacket with black stripes down the arms, as well as pants with black stripes down the legs. He removed his skullcap, revealing slightly messy, chocolate hair with butter-blond highlights. He opened his eyes and revealed them to be of an emerald green color.
“I’ve got nothing to say to you,” the boy said. “Get your trash boyfriend over here. I’ve got some stuff I need to say to him.”
“No can do,” Katrina replied. “Wait a second, haven’t I seen you before?”
She was looking, this time, at the girl. She had black hair that was tied back in a ponytail. She was wearing a yellow shirt with extremely short, green sleeves, as well as green pants. Her eyes also happened to be green and nearly the same color as the boy’s.
“Maybe you have,” the girl said, “And maybe you haven’t.”
“No, I’ve seen you before,” Katrina said, sounding sure of herself. “I remember battling you, for some reason. I think I won, too...”
“Hey, let’s not lose focus here!” the boy exclaimed, walking further away from the booth. “Now, where’s your trash boyfriend hiding?”
“I’m right here,” the boy turned around and received –
– a swift left hook to his jaw. Katrina’s eyes went extremely wide in surprise. Travis was standing directly opposite her with his fist clenched, and he looked...livid. The boy staggered backward, smirking, and then righted himself. “If it isn’t the miracle boy – the luckiest son of a ***** alive. You mean to tell me you haven’t bit it yet? Damn, that’s a disappointment.”
“You don’t know anything about phoenixes,” Travis said coldly. Katrina put her hand toward her mouth, as Travis’ was going back toward his hip. “They don’t die.”
“Like I said, that’s a disappointment,” the boy replied.
“You honestly thought I was going to forgive you?” Travis said. Katrina was trying to move away from the brown-haired boy – she hadn’t seen Travis this ****** off since one time two years ago when, ironically enough, Nate (who had been her ex-boyfriend) caught him and Katrina kissing each other and then said a few well-placed words. “I’ve got a good memory. I didn’t forget that you tried to kill me last time we saw each other...Matt.”
This boy was Matthew Marius. Again ironic was the fact that his twin sister had become one of Travis’ good friends during his first journey. When they had met him in Cherrygrove City nearly two years ago, he seemed like a very nice boy – too nice, actually. His sister implied that he often failed to stand up for himself. Somewhere along the course of that summer, though, he had caught the power bug – and he’d been a thorn in their side ever since. In Olivine City, when Travis battled him for the first time, the match ended in a draw – because, long story short, Matthew had nearly frozen Travis to death with his Pokémon’s attacks. Katrina, also, had nearly caught the business end of a Hyper Beam from Matt’s rampaging Nidoking, then his starter and powerhouse Pokémon. Travis had never quite forgiven Matt for this...among other things.
“That’s too bad, because I forgive you,” Matt said.
“Forgive me? For what?” Travis retorted.
“Don’t play dumb with me,” Matt said.
“No – you don’t play dumb with me,” Travis shot back. “You haven’t spoken to your sister in two years, have you?”
“That’s because she’s rolling around with that no-good skate bum friend of yours,” Matthew retorted.
“Shut up,” Travis said bitingly, his fists clenching again. “That’s no excuse. Madeline hasn’t been the same ever since the war...”
“You’ve got no ******* right to say that to me!!” Matt roared at the top of his lungs, drawing the attention of Nurse Joy and the few people that were presently inside the Pokémon Center at this point of the morning. “I know damn well she hasn’t been the same.”
“Have you checked up on her?” Travis asked. “Tried to? Called to ask how she was doing? She went to see her father – your father – and came back. Did you say anything to her then? No?”
“I’ll thank you not to nose around like you do,” Matt said, his eyes narrowing. “It’s none of your business.”
“Madeline’s my friend,” Travis said in a dangerously low tone of voice. “So, I guess it’d better be my business...’cause, now that you’re all independent, you clearly don’t give a damn.”
Matt and Travis stared daggers at each other for a second. Even though Katrina was taking Travis’ side in this conflict (obviously) – she couldn’t help thinking, if only for a moment, that Travis was blowing this just a little bit out of proportion. After all, their serious injuries and near-deaths in that tournament two summers ago had both been (for the most part) freak accidents, right?
Matthew was laughing. “I don’t know what the hell happened to you. You used to be so calm about things. Now...you’re a little bit – ha ha...unsettled...”
Before Matthew knew what was going on, he was on the ground face-down. This time, Travis had caught him around the jaw so swiftly that he had sent the young boy into a tail spin, caused mainly by a combination of his natural strength and the ‘boost’ that the sword at Travis’ waist granted him.
“You try fighting a war against a demon,” Travis growled, sounding a bit like a demon himself. “Then you’ll see why I’m so ‘unsettled’. Oh, that’s right. While people that I knew and cared about – including your own sister – were on the front lines fighting, what did you do? You ran with your tail between your legs back to Cherrygrove – ****** off at me, no less, since you thought it was my fault that the league got cancelled.”
“What’s your point?” Matt jumped to his feet. Slowly, a ring of people was starting to gather around the two.
“Get the hell out of here,” Travis spat, barely audible.
“What did you just say to me?” Matt asked incredulously, almost if he was galled.
“I said, get the hell out of here and go back to Johto before I do something that you’ll regret,” Travis said. “I don’t need any of my bad memories from that place following me here. Now, go.”
“No can do,” Matt said. “I’ve got a job here and I’m not leaving until it’s done. So, you can just stay out of my way.”
“I don’t have the time for a shallow coward like you,” Travis growled, turning his back on Matt. “I’m out of here.”
Katrina, with an extremely worried face, turned around and ran after him. Matt, snarling, advanced on Travis. Suddenly, an Espeon jumped into Matt’s path. The red gem on her forehead began to glow white, and Matthew was blasted off of his feet. As soon as his rear end smacked against the ground, he sprang back to a standing position and said, “That’s it! We’re taking this outside! I challenge you to a battle!”
“You don’t want to say another word to me,” Travis said with a dangerous whisper. “I’m leaving, so you’d best leave well enough alone.”
“So, my guess was right,” Matt said nastily. “After two years of leaving his pistols on the shelf, the gunslinger’s afraid to shoot.”
Travis stopped dead in his tracks. His eyes narrowed and he turned around.
“You’re on,” he said.
It was in a matter of moments that the two boys and their girlfriends moved outside, followed by a crowd of several of the people that had entered the Pokémon Center through the course of the morning. Children riding the wide Main Street of Oldale Town stopped and dismounted their bikes to come and watch, forming a ring around Travis, Katrina, Matthew, and the black-haired girl. Immediately in front of Travis stepped Angel, whose anger had been awakened by Matt’s sudden charge on her owner and friend. She was ready – for the first time in a couple of years – to fight.
“So...I never asked you,” Matt shouted. “What’s it feel like, being a has-been at fourteen?”
“I wouldn’t know,” Travis replied coldly.
“Oh, really?” Matt said incredulously, pulling out a Pokéball and enlarging it to maximum size. “Let’s see if you’re as good at battling as you are at fooling yourself!”
The ball, having been thrown by Matt, bounced off of the ground and sprang open. The creature looked a bit like a bipedal chicken.. Its yellow-and-orange body stood about three feet off of the ground, and all four of its limbs ended in claws. A red streak of fire shot forth from his beak hung in the air for a moment, then disappeared as this Pokémon made itself ready to fight. Travis recognized this Pokémon from the brochures and brief study he’d been doing of the Hoenn region in the month between receiving his first information and the present.
“You’ve got to be kidding me,” he muttered. “He can’t have trained a Torchic to that level in a week.”
“You look awestruck,” Matt shouted across the field. “The die’s cast, though, so you can’t back down.”
“Wasn’t planning on it,” Travis replied fiercely. “Let’s go, Angel!!”
The fork-tailed, fox-like Sun Pokémon planted her four feet into the ground and lowered her head, the red gem on her lavender forehead flashing in the sunlight.
“Scratch attack, Combusken!” the Young Fowl Pokémon raised his claw and advanced toward Angel and Travis. His speed seemed too much for Travis to handle, and his best Pokémon was swiped alongside to the ground in a matter of seconds. She rose to her feet and her eyes flashed.
“Angel!” Travis shouted worriedly.
“Maybe I should go easy on you...nah, I’m enjoying this too much,” Matt commented. “Combusken, hit ‘em again! Scratch attack!”
A flame-colored blur advanced on Angel a second time, and a second time, she tasted dirt. Her body now stinging from multiple cuts, she staggered to her feet, looking back at Travis to see why he wasn’t issuing some order. A blank look was on his face as he stood there, staring silently ahead. He looked lost – like he hadn’t ever been here before. On her own, she jumped away from another Scratch attack and then got caught by a second that sent her sprawling to the ground.
Meanwhile, a girl with hair pulled back in a black ponytail sidled alongside Katrina, who saw her out of the corner of her eye and smiled.
“I was going to ask you two questions,” Katrina said. “The first one – whether you and Matthew were an item – I guess we know the answer to that question already.”
“Anything else you want to interrogate me about?” the black-haired girl said sharply. “Before you go prying into my personal life, why don’t you at least ask me my name first?”
“Because who I remember exactly who you are,” Katrina said. “Mariah Cecil – Gardner Pokémon Academy in Violet City, Johto. It’s been a long time.”
“Two years...” Mariah said, staring rather blankly ahead at the battle. “People...situations...they change in two years.”
“You don’t have to tell me,” Katrina said. “If I remember correctly, you got eliminated from the Olivine Summer Invitational...by Rafael, no less. Back that June, you two were working so well together. How’d you go from there...to this?”
“Is it any of your business?” Mariah replied harshly.
“No, it’s not – not really,” Katrina said coolly. “I was just curious.”
“I don’t have anything personal against either of you, actually,” Mariah replied, turning her head toward Katrina. “So, I guess I’ll satisfy your curiosity. Rafael and I broke up.”
“I know that already,” Katrina said calmly as he watched Angel and Matt’s Combusken continue to go at it. “Tell me something I don’t know – like...why did you break up with Rafael?”
“There were a lot of reasons...” Mariah answered, suddenly looking rather cathartic and pitiful. “We already had our share of arguments. Rafael and I had been friends since about our fourth year of school. I was the so-called ‘genius’ – but he just scraped by. He never got over that. He wasn’t jealous of me...he just felt inferior. After the Golden Moon Tournament in Goldenrod – when we lost to you two – things just got worse after that. He broke up with me. Said that he couldn’t live up to my standards. Only thing was, I didn’t set any. It was all in his head.”
“So what happened to him after that?” Katrina asked. “Travis had to face him later, and he looked like he was on the edge of a breakdown.”
“He didn’t like himself,” Mariah said. “That self-hatred turned into pain. He started doing whoever and whatever he thought would take his pain away.”
“Whoever...” Katrina gasped, catching the hint. “Wasn’t he only thirteen? You don’t mean...”
“It didn’t work,” Mariah said. “None of it worked. The last I’d heard of him...was last year. He came to me all the way from Violet City and gave me a message. He told me not to blame myself. And then he left. I didn’t know what he was talking about. The next day, the cops found him – hanging in the basement of his old house.”
“I...didn’t know...” Katrina gasped. Then, she clenched her fist as she turned in Matthew’s direction. “So...he’s taking advantage...”
“That’s not it at all,” Mariah said, shaking her head. “He’s not like that.”
“Want to bet?” Katrina asked icily.
“He’s...actually very kind,” Mariah affirmed. Katrina scoffed, to which Mariah exclaimed, “I’m not lying to you! He’s helped me out a lot about dealing with losing Rafael. It still hurts...and he knew that – so that’s why when he came out here, he brought me out here to take me away from all of it. He asked me out then. I’m not even sure if he’d planned to, but I said yes all the same.”
“I’m guessing you’re from Cherrygrove, originally?” Katrina asked. Mariah nodded.
“Yeah. I had a sister in Violet City, though...that’s how I was able to go to Gardner the entire time. I’d just go back to Cherrygrove for Christmas and summer,” she replied. Suddenly, she smiled.
“What’s so funny?” Katrina asked rather nastily – although that might have been because she was witnessing Angel getting pummeled by Combusken rather mercilessly while Travis stood there like a statue.
“We met for the first time at the Invitational,” Mariah said. “I didn’t know him then. I thought the same thing you did – he was a disrespectful brat out for nothing but a little attention. But I met him after whatever that incident was that happened near Blackthorn City. He seemed changed...more focused. He didn’t seemed to act like he was angry at the world. He was angry at something in particular. Whenever he’s not around it – him, he’s a very sweet person.”
“You mean, he’s angry at Travis?” Katrina asked. “What did he do this time?”
“Matthew told me that he’d lost a brother and a sister,” Mariah sighed. “That’s how he felt he could relate to me a little bit more.”
Katrina frowned, feeling as if Mariah had dodged the question. Apparently, they had reached a place where either Mariah felt that she could not be honest, or Mariah simply didn’t know the answer to her question. Without another word, the conversation ended. Just as that took place, they watched Angel get hit hard and knocked to the ground for the umpteenth time by Matt’s Combusken.
“Damn it,” Travis cursed himself. His knees were shaking, and for some reason, he couldn’t seem to remember any of Angel’s attacks. They used to have an ace in the hole....a secret weapon...but he couldn’t remember a thing about it right now. Worse, he was folding like a lawn chair in front of just a small crowd of people. This was even more embarrassing than his first gym match two years ago...but at least he’d won a few battles before then.
“Hey, Travis,” Matthew called. Travis looked up. Matt, who had a nasty grin on his face as his blond-streaked coffee-brown hair blew in the spring breeze, said, “You remember that day at the Sprout Tower? When you unleashed that custom attack? Back then, I thought you were pretty impressive. Then, I learned that, with enough hard work and confidence, anybody could do it. Your blood doesn’t mean a damn thing.”
“I wish it didn’t,” Travis growled, looking at the ground. Something inside him told him that it was over. He stopped fighting it, and his fists unclenched.
“Finish this, Combusken! Meteor Ball!” Matthew yelled.
“Meteor...Ball?” Travis repeated, looking up. Combusken gathered his hands and rounded them. Suddenly, a perfect sphere of crackling flame about the size of a regulation basketball appeared in his hands. Combusken hurled this ball of fire at Angel, who was battered and unable to even defend herself as the flames licked against her lavender body, scorching it. She had been a trooper for taking as much (unanswered) damage as she had, but this final attack proved to be too much. Badly burned and badly bruised, she sank to the ground, unconscious.
Katrina put her hands to her mouth. Mariah blinked stoically. She seemed to be neither excessively overjoyed nor upset.
“Return, Combusken,” Matt called, holding out a Pokéball. The Young Fowl Pokémon suddenly turned into a red light, which was promptly sucked and contained inside the red-and-white capture sphere as it closed. Matt, shrinking it down to pocket size, hooked it back onto the inside of his jacket. Looking up at Travis, he smirked. “You’ve lost your touch. Looks like your guns got rusty. Hey, maybe you’re the one that needs to go back to Johto – ‘cause the pain’s just getting started.”
Matt turned around and began to walk off, followed by Mariah. People began to mutter disapprovingly as they returned to their former activities. This left Travis alone to behold the sight of his wounded friend lying there in the dirt road. He silently knelt down beside her and picked her up into his arms and, without a word even to Katrina, walked back inside the Pokémon Center, Angel in his arms.
Whoa...Oathblivion, hold your Rapidash. I'm not done yet. ^_^
“<How could you let that happen?!>” Crescent shouted in the waiting room of the Pokémon Center five minutes later as Angel had to be treated for her injuries. “<How? You stood there like a statue while she got completely demolished!! Why didn’t you try to protect her somehow? Why??>”
“Crescent...” Katrina moaned pleadingly. “Please calm down.”
“<I’m not going to calm down until I know she’s alright!!>” Crescent shouted. “<Loyalty should be rewarded, not punished!!>”
“Crescent!” Katrina exclaimed. But the angry Umbreon would have none of it.
“<Some friend you are! You didn’t even try! You’d given up almost as soon as it had started!>” Crescent exclaimed. “<But I guess it doesn’t matter because you don’t have to feel the flesh being scratched off of your body over and over again. I swear, if she doesn’t come out of there alive...>”
“She’s not that badly hurt, Crescent,” Katrina said. “Now, calm down.”
“<How can you even trust him?!>” Crescent turned on his Trainer next. “<How the hell do you know he’s not just going to abandon you and leave you hanging?>”
“Because I’ve known him longer than you have, and I know he’s not like that!!” Katrina shouted.
“<People change,>” Crescent said. “<Circumstances change them. Maybe, after all this time, he’s tired of playing the hero. Maybe he’s tired of protecting and looking out for others.>”
“I know you’re upset about Angel getting hurt, but that’s not called for,” Katrina said simply, folding her arms. “Insulting one of her best friends isn’t the way to show you care about her.”
“<Letting one of your best friends get beaten to a bloody pulp isn’t the way, either,>” Crescent said. “<Don’t you have anything to say for yourself? Nothing? ...Say something, damn it!>”
Travis, who had been as silent and as still as a stone throughout this entire conversation, finally stood up, to Katrina’s great surprise. She stared at him. There was something blank and empty about his face – like all traces of emotion had been wiped from it.
“I’m...” he said, “...going for a walk. Don’t follow me – I need to be alone right now.”
“Wait!” Katrina shouted, but to no avail – by the time the words got out of her mouth, Travis was already halfway down the hall and shrinking from sight.
“<Running away,>” Crescent commented angrily. “<He’s just running away again. Isn’t that why we’re here in the first place? Because he couldn’t bear to stay in Johto with all of the bad memories?>”
“You’re partly right,” Katrina sighed. “But he probably would have liked the idea of coming, anyway. But...a few of the bad memories from two years ago came flooding back to him. That’s probably why he just froze. You weren’t there the whole time – you don’t know all of the things he went through because he hardly ever talks about them. He’s usually just fine as long as there’s nothing and no one around to bring those memories back to mind. There’s been days he’s been like this, though...moody, secretive, and – I hate to admit it, but Matt hit it right on the head – unstable.”
“<Why does he even bother, then?>” Crescent asked. “<We all know his body’s ready for him to be a Trainer again, but what’s the use of that if his mind’s nowhere close?>”
“It’s expecting too much of anyone – even Travis – to get rid of that pain in only a year and a half,” Katrina replied. “But, I guess there was this feeling that, if he didn’t bounce back now – while all of us were still pretty young – he would never bounce back.”
“<But will he bounce back?>” Crescent asked. “<That’s the question.>”
A loud PING signaled the end of the doctor’s business. The sliding doors parted automatically as Katrina and Crescent simultaneously turned toward them. A lavender, fox-like creature was out of the doors first, sprinting at a full run. Crescent’s red eyes brightened as he saw her emerge, looking altogether better than she had when she went in.
“<Angel!>” Crescent exclaimed. “<You’re alright.>”
“<I’ve been worse,>” Angel said as Crescent nuzzled her neck. “<Where is he?>”
She seemed to be addressing Katrina.
Katrina sighed. “He said he’ll be back later...” she started, but Angel was already blowing past her, swearing in Pokémon tongue.
“<He’s in danger!!>” she exclaimed as Crescent and Katrina began to follow after her.
“<What do you mean, danger?!>” Crescent shouted.
“<I don’t know exactly!>” Angel yelled back. Crescent and Katrina stopped. Angel, seeming to sense this as well, turned around and shouted, “<Come on, let’s go!>”
”Use Meteor Ball!”
”The gunslinger’s afraid to shoot.”
“The gunslinger’s afraid...”
”Use Meteor Ball!”
”...afraid to shoot.”
“I don’t know what the hell happened to you...”
”You used to be...”
”...so calm about things.”
”I don’t know what the hell happened...”
”...a little bit...”
The words of Matthew finally became too much to hold inside and Travis, leaning against a shop on the opposite side of Oldale Town (which isn’t saying much, actually), turned on his heel and, yelling, smashed his fist into the stone wall of the building, managing in his rage (although all of his left knuckles were now bloody) to induce small cracks in the surface of the wall.
“*******!” he swore, leaning his head against the wall. He wondered why...why it seemed like he couldn’t get away from all of the things that had troubled his mind two years ago. He wondered why his **** just had to follow him. He couldn’t get away. He could run to the ends of the earth and not get away, because it would find him and hunt him down that much more relentlessly. Just when he thought he’d escaped...he hadn’t had a nightmare about the war ever since they had set sail from Johto nearly a week ago. When he had been there, he could have counted on it at the very least once a week. Maybe there was only one way to get away from this. Maybe, that day on that cliff, if Katrina hadn’t stopped him...
“You shouldn’t loiter around shops – people’ll think you’re up to no good,” a low voice rang behind Travis. He turned around. In front of him was a tall young man about sixteen, perhaps older. He had bronze hair and piercing, golden brown eyes to go along with his hard face. He wore a black headband along with a gi-like garment, which consisted of the green outergarment and a black undershirt. Travis took his initial thought back. This guy was definitely older than sixteen. Another thing noticeable is that he had an earring in his left ear, as well as a silver necklace that was tucked under his shirt. Getting a look at his face again, Travis questioned the assumption that this guy was only sixteen. He had to be older...or, maybe like Travis himself, he had seen things to which no one his age should have to be subjected. What had those eyes seen? Who was this person? “Especially armed like that.”
He was definitely looking at Travis’ sword. Clenching his fists, Travis responded to him.
“You know...you should know well enough to not mess with someone when he’s in a bad mood,” he said rather harshly, walking toward the bronze-haired young man. “Who the hell are you, anyway?”
“None of your business,” the bronze-haired youth replied.
Travis forced a bitter smile. “What do you want with me, then?”
“Ironically enough,” the young man replied, “I came to ask you questions. Starting with...where’d you get that sword at your waist?”
Travis gave the young man the response that he had basically practiced for a month for just this type of situation. Not telling a lie and, yet, not telling secrets: “It’s a family heirloom.”
“Really?” the youth said with a small twinge of incredulity in his voice. “That’s very interesting. I’ve seen a sword just like that one – well, read about it. It’s supposed to be supernatural – if you believe stuff like that. Do you, by the way? Do you believe in the supernatural? That, every now and then, the spiritual realm gets involved with the physical realm – and strange things happen...”
“You’re preaching to the choir,” Travis said bitingly. “Get to the point.”
“That sword you have on your waist...” the youth said cryptically, fanning a bit of his bronze-colored hair out of his golden-brown eyes. “...it reminds me a lot of a sword I read about called the Godfire.”
Travis gasped. That was indeed one of the names for the sword at his waist. But he had to keep his poker face on.
“That’s interesting,” he said. “I’m guessing the Godfire isn’t a very common sword.”
“One-of-a-kind,” the young man replied. “Well, that is, there’s only one of that sword that’s authentic. It’s actually one of a set of three – the Blade Trinity.”
“Three?” Travis said. This was indeed strange news to hear. It sounded like what this guy was saying was that there were two other swords in this world whose powers could be on par with his. But, again – he couldn’t let on that he knew more than he was supposed to. “I’ve heard of the Godfire sword, of course – it was sealed in Johto, and I’m from there. But I’ve never heard of the other two swords, though...”
“Have you heard of Arceus?” the young man said.
“Arceus? Who’s Arceus?” Travis asked, sounding nonplused.
“Apparently not,” the young man said with a sigh. “Arceus was supposed to be the very first Pokémon. Ancient and more powerful than anything anyone could ever imagine. So powerful, that he created all the known species of Pokémon, starting with three – the High Legendaries. You’ve heard of them, I know.”
“I have,” Travis replied. “Lugia, Ho-oh, and Rayquaza, wasn’t it?”
“That’s right,” the young man answered. “After a while, Arceus went back to the High Dimension and left these three Pokémon in charge. They formed a Triumvirate – a ruling body with three beings of equal status. But they each had a separate role. Rayquaza was the governor...Lugia’s role was to bring balance and prevent wars. Ho-oh’s role was the Judge.”
“Judge?” Travis repeated.
“Ho-oh could look deep into the heart of a Pokémon and determine if its will toward other Pokémon and toward the earth on which they lived was good or evil,” the bronze-haired youth explained. Travis’ mouth dropped again. It all sounded so familiar. “To those whom he judged good, he granted protection. To those whom he judged to be evil...his Sacred Fire utterly consumed them.”
He had known for nearly two years how to use the sword...but, in the few seconds that Travis had spent listening to this young man talk, his knowledge of his sword’s origins had increased exponentially.
“Soon after, humans established contact with Pokémon. Even the High Legendaries appeared to a select few people that they deemed worthy,” the young man continued. “This event – called ‘Adventus’...is the center of our present calendar and has been for over two millennia. That’s why our years are known by the term ‘Post Adventus’. The High Legendaries wished to maintain contact with the two main nations of this world at the time – Aldibar and Hoenn. So they created three swords to be wielded by a chosen few – those that captured, in the best way humans knew how, the spirit and true purpose of the sword.”
“An untainted judgment of good and evil...” Travis muttered to himself.
“One thing history has taught us...” the young man said. “When a sword crosses the borders of its home continent and enters another...something big is going to happen.”
“Something big?” Travis said.
“Do you know the political situation in this country currently?” the young man asked. Then, shaking his head, he said. “Never mind – a kid like you wouldn’t understand conflict.”
“You want to bet?” Travis replied harshly, the young man’s comment having set him off.
“In any case, I know one thing that the stories say – those swords are powerful,” the young man said. “If the sword you carry really is the one I think it is...it might be a risk for it to be in this country. There are some who seek power...and they will seek your sword.”
“Like I haven’t heard it before,” Travis said, cocking his neck. “What’s that have to do with you?”
“I’d like to take that sword off of your hands,” the young man finally said. “It’ll just slow you down. I don’t know where you got it, but a kid like you can’t possibly know how to use it, not unless he’s a –“
“Swordbearer,” Travis finished the statement for him. “Look, I don’t know what you were planning to buy my sword for, but I’m not selling.”
“Buy?” the young man laughed a laugh that was filled with a dark brand of amusement. He drew a weapon. It had two barrels and a trigger – a bit like a sawed-off shotgun. The defining factor, though is that, squeezed in between the two barrels and extending out about two feet and some change past the barrels was the blade to a sword. This was indeed a unique weapon. He had seen swords (obviously), and a very limited number of people in his home carried guns. But he had never seen a combination of the two. “You misunderstand me. I don’t intend to buy anything.”
“You’ll just threaten me and I’ll give it up?” Travis scoffed, starting to walk away from the youth. “No chance in hell.”
“You don’t understand anything about that sword,” the young man said sharply to the teen boy’s back.
“Like hell I don’t,” Travis replied savagely, stopping in his tracks.
“Sounds like you’ve got some anger issues,” the young man said calmly.
“Yeah,” Travis admitted. “Maybe the fact that I get approached by some unknown history teacher wannabe that just starts making judgments about me just because of what he sees...maybe that does piss me off...just a little bit.”
“That’s really too bad,” the young man retorted, brandishing his gun. “I’ll be taking that sword now.”
“Don’t make me show it to you,” Travis said calmly.
“Die,” Travis heard the young man’s voice and a swift movement of wind. The youth, moving quicker than the human eye could follow, closed the distance of forty or so yards, raising the blade protruding from his gun to kill the younger boy. Then...
Quicker than a flash, the sword was out, blocking his attack and forcing him backward through midair as he skidded, after a few seconds, to a complete stop. Travis had drawn his weapon and instantly felt the blade’s terrific power surging through every corner of his body. He also felt anger, just as terrible, surging through every corner of his mind.
What the hell? the young man thought to himself. It’s like he had eyes in the back of his head!!
“You just made a huge mistake,” Travis said simply. “The last time I drew this sword in an actual fight, I was in a war...against something a lot more powerful than you. You’re making me fight again. I didn’t want to fight anymore. So...now, the chances of my showing mercy on you are slim to none.”
His eyes widened and acquired a slightly crazed look.
“You wanted this sword – now, you’re going to get it!”
Travis sheathed the Sacred Flame and dropped into a stance. He wasn’t going to go through anything else like he had two years ago. He made sure of that. He had made a promise – a grisly promise – to himself when he came out on his journey. He hadn’t even told her about it, because the very thought would worry, if not horrify her. He didn’t want her worried on his account anymore...
...but he promised that, if anyone else forced him to draw his sword in battle again...
...he would kill them.
The bronze-haired young man waited for a moment, thinking that Travis had perhaps given up. He should have known better – Travis’ expertise for weaker opponents was fighting from the draw. The blue-haired boy’s azure eyes looked up at the young man and flashed...then, he disappeared.
“Huh? ****!” the young man swore, leaping into the air. A half-second later, a katana came flashing from the ground up, through the space where he had just been milliseconds ago. Travis returned to an at-ease position and watched for a few seconds as the youth sailed backward through the air and then skidded to a stop several yards away from him. The youth muttered to himself, “The speed! I’ve been trained to fight at that speed, but I just barely got away. This kid’s a freak!”
“Damn it,” Travis growled to himself. “So much for killing him with one shot...He’s fast – too fast for battojutsu to work.”
“I had a feeling you knew more than you were letting on,” the young man said aloud, taking a few pellets out of his pocket and slipping them into his gun. “This could be interesting.”
“I’m giving you a chance to back out,” Travis said. “I haven’t even scratched the surface yet.”
“Why don’t you show me, then?” the young man asked. “Show me what’s below the surface!”
Travis disappeared again. This time, however, he wasn’t as quick in the youth’s brownish eyes. The young man brandished the blade protruding from his gun and cut through an illusion, causing it to disappear.
“What?!” the youth shouted. He then felt a piercing pain in the small of his back and cried out loudly. Somehow...someway...Travis had made his way behind the young man and was presently driving the hilt of his sword rather forcefully into the mysterious youth’s back. With an extra push and seemingly nonchalant body language, he sent the young man flying and turned around, his eyes ablaze.
“Enough games,” Travis said flatly. Taking off on his right foot, he used his horrifying speed to beat the young gunman’s flying body to a specific point. Raising his hilt again, he caught the young man in the stomach, laying into him with all kinds of strength and causing him to cough up flecks of blood as his eyes went red and wide in agony. The young man landed on the ground and doubled over as Travis jumped several dozen feet into the air with one bound.
“Go on – finish me, then!” the young man cried. “I can bet a kid like you doesn’t have the bal–“
“FALLING PHOENIX STRIKE!” The youth looked up as he saw the cobalt-haired teenage boy descending from a substantial height in the air, his sword...
Double take – his flaming sword...
...aimed right at the young man’s head. He smiled – Travis had taken a beat too long.
Travis swung down, laying into the young man’s –
Absolutely nothing. The flames extinguished on his sword, leaving Travis to wonder what the hell happened.
“Damn it!” Travis swore. “Don’t tell me he dodged –“
Travis felt a searing pain in his back as he felt himself falling forward with no way to stop it. He felt like an electric shock had just coursed through his body and fell to his knees, shaking and trying not to hit the ground.
“Been a while since I had to use that,” the young man sighed, blowing away smoke from the barrels of his gun. He walked slowly toward Travis, leaning the butt of his gun on his shoulder for show. “You weren’t bad – a little too overzealous, though. You see, I know a couple of things. Where I was trained, winning a battle consisted of three steps – size up your opponent and see what he’s about, force him to make a mistake, and then finish him off.”
Travis struggled to his feet – but he was still numb and had a hard time moving. And his enemy was there already. Small balls of light filtered in from Travis’ left. He could see them even with his blurry vision. It was as if he was seeing stars, descended from the heavens to coexist with man. The youth saw them as well and ignored them, raising his sword.
“This...is step three,” the young man said as a ball of light hit his shoulder and sat there for a moment. He finally took notice and looked at his right shoulder. A second later, the ball of light exploded spectacularly, blasting the youth sideways. Turning his head slowly, Travis looked to his left. There he saw a pink-haired girl about his age holding a staff, with an Espeon at one of her ankles, and a black-coated Umbreon at the other.
“Katrina...” he sighed.
Meanwhile, the young man sat up, his bronze hair disheveled and his golden eyes flashing. He stood up.
“Gotcha...you’re lucky that I’ve just realized that the sword won’t function if it’s separated from you,” he said. “So, you get to keep the sword and live...for now.”
Making several strange hand signals, he seemingly summoned forth a vortex of wind. Katrina and Travis both covered their eyes to protect them from all of the dust that was presently flying around. They looked up and...
“He’s gone...” Travis sighed, standing in a wobbly manner. His balance faltered and he began to fall over, only to be caught around the middle by Katrina for support.
“Who was that guy?” she asked.
“No idea...” Travis replied. “Said he wanted my sword. Might’ve just been some rogue bandit or something – but he sure didn’t fight or act like one. He knew more about my sword than I did...”
“Hmm...” Katrina said simply.
“How’d you know where to find me, anyway?” Travis asked.
“Angel sensed you were in trouble. I’ve been following her the entire way,” Katrina answered.
“<Yeah,>” the voice of Crescent, Katrina’s Umbreon, piped in. “<She got us lost.>”
“<Did not!>” Angel shouted, blushing. “<Use some sense. How do you propose getting lost in a town this small?>”
“<You managed it, somehow,>” Crescent commented. “<I always said you were a genius...>”
Angel blushed harder. Travis, still a bit unsteady on his feet, began to make his way toward her.
“Are you alright?” Katrina asked concernedly.
“I’ve had a lot worse,” Travis said. “Basically, it feels like all of my limbs fell asleep at the same time.”
He knelt down in front of Angel and patted her head.
“I’m sorry about earlier,” he said. “I don’t know what happened to me. I just...”
“<You’re being too hard on yourself,>” she said. “<It’s a miracle you’re even here.>”
Travis smiled, glad that he had his partner’s forgiveness. Standing and turning toward Katrina, he called her name out.
“Yeah?” she uttered, turning around toward him. He approached her and took her free hand, each holding their weapons in the outside hands.
“I’m glad I brought my sword with me,” Travis said. “I’ve got this funny feeling that I’m going to need it.”
Well that was embarassing... ... ...
Anyway, a good chapter, and suprising too. I expected the person to be Matt, and I expected Travis to lose the battle, but dang... Chapter two and he's already having to fight for his life?? Looks like there's no rest for the weary after all, eh?
The chapter was also full of plotty goodness, such as: "Who has the other sword?" and "Why is this guy a ninja-thief character?" It'll be interesting for sure.
I caught one mistake too, “Because who I remember exactly who you are,” A typo, but hard to understand.
The ever (over?) eager, -Oath
PS: Questions questionably put as a post script! Without giving too much away, will Shiro/Lorca and the gang be back? Also, what are your plans for Travis and Katrina's teams?
Great chapter EM1, I loved the Ninja-type character I think that he might Raquaza's weilder.
I like how Matt came back and The new pokeNav thingy.
Kazekage over and out
P.S: Its me Half-Blood Prince
Great chapter as always.
Looks likes Travis has 2 rivals. The ninga guy and Matt.
Keep up the awsome work!
My LeafGreen Scramble Challenge-
Lily Lv. 21
Where-Cerulean training Nexus
My Brawl and Wii CodesWii- 5954 4612 0258 5882
Brawl- 4811-6624-6176 Diamond- 2836 1459 1980
PM TO EXCHANGE CODES!
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Right, back to the drill... catch ya after i read!
The Corei Quest's latest chapter: Chapter Forty Five: Game On (2 April 2013)
PROJECT C-SQUARE STATUS = 100.00% Complete (11-12-2010, ca. 2:40pm GMT)
HEART OF SEVEN STONES IS ON INDEFINITE HIATUS (REAPED) UNTIL FURTHER NOTICEButt-ugly Banner by Me(Still waiting on the excellent Saffire Persian for another awesome TCQ banner!)
:P I got the grammar mistakes this time Air Dragon
I haven't been here in a while, but I have been reading. And I woould like to congradtulate you for finishing PG:J, Finally! And you're 2 Chapters ahead of you're orignal schedule! ^_^ how do you feel?!
People will, last time I checked, I don't remember being able to contract people and will, but I could be wrong“You shouldn’t loiter around shops – people’ll think you’re up to no good,” a low voice rang behind Travis.
Outer garment is two words.He wore a black headband along with a gi-like garment, which consisted of the green outergarment and a black undershirt.
had basically, I don't know it doesn't sound right or look right... I suggest to cut out basically.Travis gave the young man the response that he had basically practiced for a month for just this type of situation.
It's wordy. You could say this a bit more, simpler, if what I am saying makes sense. I don't really know how you would fix it...It sounded like what this guy was saying was that there were two other swords in this world whose powers could be on par with his.
Unlike other ones so far, this is a grammar mistake. Its is possesive, not a contraction. Use It's.“Ho-oh could look deep into the heart of a Pokémon and determine if its will toward other Pokémon and toward the earth on which they lived was good or evil,” the bronze-haired youth explained.
I really hate english, so many confusing rules, this is one of them. Judged WELL not good.“To those whom he judged good, he granted protection...
Sword Bearer is two words. Not that big of a deal.“Swordbearer,” Travis finished the statement for him.
Very unclear here, I would recommend The defining factor though, was extended, from two barrels, out about two feet and some change past the barrels was the blade to a sword.The defining factor, though is that, squeezed in between the two barrels and extending out about two feet and some change past the barrels was the blade to a sword.
The. CaPiTaLiZaTiOn ErRoRWhat the hell? the young man thought to himself.
Lovely description, one minor verb error. A half-second later, a katana, flashing from the ground up, appeared (or another word similar to this)through the space where he had just been milliseconds ago.A half-second later, a katana came flashing from the ground up, through the space where he had just been milliseconds ago.
I love this beginning part, anyway, too many preposition, you use either off or of, not both. In this cas you use offWith a sleepy and slightly annoyed expression on her face, she flicked some of her long, pink hair out of her eyes and leapt off of the bed, tearing straight for the restroom that was right next to Travis’ bed
What. CaPiTaLiZaTiOn ErRoR“<Hrmf...what the heck?>” behind Travis, an Umbreon sprang to life from his sleeping position on the floor.
Same error as the first error, no contraction. But its dialogue, so you can get away with this.“Looks like breakfast’ll have to wait.”
Must be sick of this by now, I'm getting tired... Anyway, believe it or not pullout is one word.Travis looked down and, indeed, on a pull-out shelf of sorts, were a keyboard and a mouse.
verb tense, wasTravis looked down and, indeed, on a pull-out shelf of sorts, were a keyboard and a mouse.
Going by English dictionary/grammr book, Hoenn has is the preffered way to write that.That’s really useful – Hoenn’s got a couple of spots that are kind of on the tropical side as far as climate is concerned
subject-verb agreement: there are“I know there’s a couple of types I don’t like...like Poison, for example.
God, knows I hate idioms. This is why the english language is one of the most difficult to learn, can't use both prepositions, either off or of. Use off here.In about an instant, Katrina looked like she’d just gotten the smile knocked off of her face.
The mistakes! There not ending! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!! Facedown is one word.Before Matthew knew what was going on, he was on the ground face-down
Idioms must die!!!!!! Can't use both prepositions, either off or of. Use off here.The red gem on her forehead began to glow white, and Matthew was blasted off of his feet.
This is getting ridiculous... Can't use both prepositions, either off or of. Use off here.The ball, having been thrown by Matt, bounced off of the ground and sprang open.
Verb choice, you probably want to use were...On her own, she jumped away from another Scratch attack and then got caught by a second that sent her sprawling to the ground.
Verb choice again. BeingKatrina asked rather nastily – although that might have been because she was witnessing Angel getting pummeled by Combusken rather mercilessly while Travis stood there like a statue.
seem, wrong verb tenseHe didn’t seemed to act like he was angry at the world.
Another stupid rule. Can't split the infinitive can't split to defend with even.Combusken hurled this ball of fire at Angel, who was battered and unable to even defend herself as the flames licked against her lavender body, scorching it.
GOD THAT WAS PAINFUL!
Anyway, I think I got all grammar mistakes, I read it three times to make sure. Damn that was hard. Anyway. Be careful with preposition use and verb choice and stuff. I'll have to do may review later. see ya!
NVM I have time and space.
Okay, so far I like this a lot. This story seemes to be coming a long very nicely. I loved the battle scene at the end. I hope to God that Travis will actually battle in a tournament this time. It would be nice for him to finish a gym, like all eight. I really hope that happens. Because, as much as I loved the war, I don't think the same thing should happen over in Hoenn a war that causes misery for everyone, stress for Travis, etc. Also the Treeko is a nice touch. i would like to see his actual character some time soon.
I see why you said you really needed Marcia and Lorca, they had to take care of Shiro's brother. Makes sense, i'd like to see how Shiro and Madeline are doing and also how Marcia, Lorca, and Shiro's brother is doing.
Also I didn't like how you ended for the previous pokemon. I mean, we rarely hear anything about them. How they ended up and what not. I mean Sparx and Hotshot, the wacky Wartortle, and my favorite... SERGE!!! You didn't really mention much about them right before, during, or after the war. I'd like to hear about them so more. Okay NOW have to leave.
Yeah, that chapter was pretty bad grammatically. I'm not budging on the dialogue, though. I mean for the characters to have slightly bad grammar because it humanizes them. I mean, c'mon - when's the last time that you heard a fourteen-year-old that had any friends in high school speak perfect english? I used to do it and it never worked for me.
Also for the 'its' in that sentence about Ho-oh, I probably didn't make it clear.
"Ho-oh could look deep into the heart of a Pokemon and determine if [that Pokemon's] will toward other Pokemon..."
It's supposed to be 'its'. But the one you missed, ironically, was that the 'they' in that sentence was supposed to be 'it'.
Also, good wasn't in the sense of quality as used in that one sentence. It was in the sentence as a measure of morals and character. You can't really have "well" and "evil". It doesn't work very well.
Also, Swordbearer is an official term used in the fic. It is not in the English dictionary as a compound noun, but for the purposes of this fan fiction, it refers specifically and exclusively as a title for people who are chosen to wield one of the three swords of the Blade Trinity. (Why didn't anyone say anything when I used it all through PR:J?)
I've got this thing about 'off'...even though it's supposed to be correct grammar, it just sounds really fugly to me. But I'll take care in the future - thanks.
I've got to pick up my pace - xXSaberXx finished PR:CoF (finally!) and she's on a hiatus, as far as I heard. Me, personally - I don't have time for a hiatus. I want this done before all of us are old and gray. So...there you go.
I started Chapter 3 yesterday. Depending on the amount of time I have to write this week, it should be up some time within the next seven days.
And I've got reasonably detailed (approximately a page on lined paper - and my writing's very small) outlines of everything up to Chapter 7. So...
*looks at time*
Crap. Voice class. GTG!
- EM1, out.
So Matt made his long awated return. Bout time, i mean he hasn't been seen since like chapter 35 of the Johto revalution. He seems liike the same old pain in the *** of a rival as always also.
The ninja guy is deffentally the replacement for Nate. He won't be in every chapter but he will have a major part of this story. Thats a good character that u are working on their my friend.
Other then those 2 things i prob. would like to see Treecko get some action in battle or at least receive a nickname soon enough.
What? Am I back?
My point exactly. Treeko should get a nickname to fit his personallity. I wonder what Katrina and Travis will catch next. I really need to say, sweet fic. Hopefully, the journey last all the way through this time. Hopefully, the league stays. I should get Kazuto Journeys updated soon. Check it out, Eon.
Visit Nocturne of Shadows. Check the chats and forums section to visit the forum. I have a guestbook and a mini shout box.
Hello, EonMaster One!
I am a new reader that just started reading your fic yesterday. And I must say, that I am very impressed with how you've written it. Your details are unbelievably accurate, it's so amazing. You are very talented, only a few authors can write details with such a high accuracy, it made me feel like I was there. I could easily visualize how it looked like.
As for the characters...I like Travis, he seems like a good guy. But I really like how you give him an Espeon. It's usually girls that go with Espeon, but I'm glad you made a guy go with Espeon. Though her name isnt so great, it doesnt make sense...Selena is a good name for it. Katrina's Umbreon has a good name, Crescent is really good. Sorry if I am picky, it's just that I am currently writing a story that involves the sun and moon. But all in all, this fic is absolutely fantastic. I would love to be on the PM List.
^^^^It suprises me that you read over a thousand pages within the span if a day.....
Have you read Pokemon Revolutio: Johto?
yeah, i would read PR:J to find out where the names came from, and the name "Angel" will make more sense. (at least to me it does...)
seems my kobun in arms (Castform) has done the honours of grammar pwnage.
Matt returns... wow, how many people didn't see that coming... heh, heh.
gtg too, but i'll be at home for easter so more net time.
damn third year at uni sucks...
hope you have it better.
PS: the sketches we talked about last time are ready. when i'm home i'll scan them...
The Corei Quest's latest chapter: Chapter Forty Five: Game On (2 April 2013)
PROJECT C-SQUARE STATUS = 100.00% Complete (11-12-2010, ca. 2:40pm GMT)
HEART OF SEVEN STONES IS ON INDEFINITE HIATUS (REAPED) UNTIL FURTHER NOTICEButt-ugly Banner by Me(Still waiting on the excellent Saffire Persian for another awesome TCQ banner!)
Why you ask? Because i orignally thought Sword Bearer was one word, until I looked in dictionary, Sword bearer is two words, which is odd. Sworbearer seems more accurate, but the english language is weird like that.
Hurry run Eon run! ^_^
Man, when I started reading PRJ I had thirty chapters ahead of me, now I have to wait :P, this is life..
And the treecko, I think its hard coming up with a name for that thing.
I'm enjoying my 17th birthday today (W00t)...well, not really enjoying. I'm trying very hard to get writing, but I've been battling a combination of allergies and a really bad cold this entire week, and thus my progress has been slowed. I am still confident, however, that I can get chapter three done by Monday, as there aren't any classes for me that day.
Spoiler:- Some questions:
Ha ha...some of your assumptions. This is indeed a beauty that I did not experience when I posted PR:J the first time because mostly everyone knew where the story was going. I'll just say this much - some of your guesses are a bit off, and you'll have to wait a couple of chapters to find out what the right answers are.
Whoa! Happy Birthday bro! Here's to long life, good health (you're gonna need it right now) and prosperity!
Well, just to pass on the wishes!
TCQ's been updated... have you seen? And if you need help with a nickname for Treecko, you could try:
1. Geiko (lame and common, i know)
4. Trex (sounds more fitting for a larvitar, hunh?)
5. Verdant meaning:
1. with lush green growth: green with vegetation or foliage
2. colours green: green in colour
3. naive: lacking experience or sophistication (literary)
The Corei Quest's latest chapter: Chapter Forty Five: Game On (2 April 2013)
PROJECT C-SQUARE STATUS = 100.00% Complete (11-12-2010, ca. 2:40pm GMT)
HEART OF SEVEN STONES IS ON INDEFINITE HIATUS (REAPED) UNTIL FURTHER NOTICEButt-ugly Banner by Me(Still waiting on the excellent Saffire Persian for another awesome TCQ banner!)
Well, I've been reading this fic for a while now, [I started reading when you were about 5 chapters into PR:J] but I've never posted.
So now I will.
I'd just like to tell you what a great job you've been doing with this fic. Reading it is one of the main reasons I've gotten back into the mood to write my own fic [which is my first, and hasn't been posted anywhere yet. Character planning ftl.], and for that I thank you.
As for Advent Phoenix, I'm liking it so far. I'm so glad you got back to Pokemon battles/the journey for now, it was my favorite part of PR:J.
Keep up the good work. You've got another faithful reader.
Oh, and happy birthday!
Oh, one more thing. That Treecko needs a name? Hmm, Treecko's are tough.
Meh, sorry, like I said, tough to name Treeckos.