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Thread: Pokemon Nightmare (horror)

  1. #1
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    Default Pokemon Nightmare (horror - 15+)

    It's been ages since I've posted on this forum, but I've decided to write a Pokemon fanfic and so I'm going to post it on here to receive feedback (hopefully).

    Now, I need to point this out: this fanfic is of the HORROR genre, and as such you may find certain parts of it disturbing or frightening. If you are squeamish or easily scared, then I recommend that you don't read this. RATED 15+ BECAUSE OF GORE, SENSITIVE TOPICS AND POSSIBLE BAD LANGUAGE.

    Anyway, here is the prologue. Enjoy!

    ___________________________

    (From Crimson Fog by Brock Harrison (published 2020); pages 3-4)

    I am thankful for many things in my life. Over the years I have had the opportunity to partake in so many different activities that other less fortunate people could only dream of doing. One of these is travelling. As a teenager, I got to visit more places than you could shake a stick at. Each one of these places offered new challenges, new experiences. Back then, I took it all for granted, and just went 'with the flow', as many people say. One more thing that I was perhaps most appreciative for were my friends. I made so many of them, and although I lost contact with many, never to regain it, I keep the memories of those friends with me at all times. They help me through the day. I remind myself that they are perhaps out there living their dreams, just like I am.

    Well, the ones who are still alive...

    The point I am trying to make here is that no oblivious person could have possibly predicted the events that took place nearly a decade ago. Of course, as you'd expect, there were those people who knew of the town's true nature right from the disaster that supposedly took place there fifty years ago. But they were always people who kept those secrets to themselves and other members of their organisations; those who sought to hide the truth, no matter the cost. To 'protect the public', as they put it. But what those people don't realise is that they may have made one of the biggest mistakes anyone could make.

    Anyway, back to the point that I made earlier – you never know; never know what's going to happen next. For me, it all happened too quickly. One moment I was listening to my two friends chattering excitedly about the upcoming events – you know the works; Pokémon battles and contests – and then the next moment the bus was hurling down the hill and everything went black. You just have no idea just how important and dear a friend is until you lose them. Literally.

    I have tried so hard to explain to people just what that town is like, and of the horrors it contains. They all believed me, of course, but it's getting the words out of my mouth that's difficult. A part of me wants to hold on to the memory forever, no matter how much it disturbs me so, and another part longs to push it out of my head and cast it away on the winds. But after sitting alone for hours on end and thinking about it endlessly, I have finally found an effective way of describing that place. Allow me to try it on you.

    Think of a Pokémon. Any Pokémon at all. In fact, think of your favourite one. Picture it as clearly as you can in your head. Smooth out its features and make the image as realistic as you can. Hold on to the image. Think about why this Pokémon is your favourite. What makes it special? What do you love about it?

    Good. Now I want you to do something that you may not like, but trust me, you'll see where I'm going with this. You still got the image of your favourite Pokémon in your head? Keep it there. Now ... I want you to transform that Pokémon into the most horrific, morbid and grotesque creature you can come up with. Be as creative as you like. Remove skin/fur, add an extra limb or two, take out its eyes, deform its shape ... Turn that Pokémon into the product of your own personal nightmare. Make sure that, when you have finished transforming it, the very thought of it makes you weak at the knees and twists your stomach.

    Finished? Looks vile, doesn't it? In fact, it's almost unrecognisable. It's no longer the Pokémon you grew so attached to. I know ... I saw countless Pokémon who had been transformed like that. They had gone from loyal, faithful and, dare I say it, cute companions to human beings to everyone's worst nightmare. It still saddens me to this day when I think about them ... What they used to be and what they ended up as...

    The reason I am writing this book is not because I am looking for fame or money, but because I want to highlight to you some of the unspeakable horrors that lie out there, in that world you so dearly love. Your home. People only see with their eyes, and what they see is what they believe, right? Well, for the most part...

    I will begin by recalling the event that started it all – the bus crash. It's a miracle alone that we even managed to survive that. But let me tell you this: there were times in the events that followed when I wished that we had perished with the rest of them, just so that we didn't have to endure the unspeakable horrors that followed. The crash took place at Sapphire Peak, which sat just above the town in question. That screech and the blood on the window ... I'll never forget it.

    The memory is there, encased within my mind like a tumour. I still remember it all as if it happened just yesterday. Allow me to tell you about it while it's fresh in my head...
    Last edited by Ocean Soul; 9th July 2011 at 10:02 PM.
    My fanfiction, 'Pokemon Nightmare' can also be found on there.

    Team White


  2. #2
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    Whoaaaa. Good job with the whole establishment of mystery here.
    Well, the ones who are still alive...
    I really liked that line.

    So, is this to be written from the perspective of Brock from the anime? (Just wondering.)

    I'm excited to see what horrors this town holds...
    I will be offline from January 2013 to October 2014.

    Greetings from the asylum of my insanity.
    Chapter 3 and cooler banner coming eventually. :P

    Dex: 128 created! ~ DA and LJ links coming later.

  3. #3
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    Well, thank you for that. The story will shift between 1st and 3rd person perspective, and the 1st person parts will be from Brock's perspective, yeah.

    And you've reminded me to post the 1st chapter.

    ________________________

    It was approaching midnight, and there had been a lot of rain during the day. The bus trundled along the narrow mountain road, leaving mud-filled tracks in its wake. The sky was hidden by thick, grey clouds, and the only source of light came from the bus's bright windows.

    Aboard this bus were several Pokémon trainers, all chattering excitedly about the upcoming events. In the morning, they would arrive at the Platinum Battle Frontier, the best and most popular place in the region for Pokémon battles. Some of the trainers had their smaller Pokémon sitting on their laps, and were eagerly chatting and boasting to one another.

    "My Monferno and I trained for weeks on end! We can't lose!"

    "My mum keeping calling and telling me to wear my lucky underwear..."

    "I've heard that the Platinum Frontier has over ten different battling facilities! Apparently, it's even better than the one in Johto."

    Amongst the chattering trainers was a dark-haired young boy of about ten. Sitting beside him was a black-haired girl of roughly the same age. A Piplup sat on her lap, chirping happily as the bus bounced up and down on the rocky road. Sitting on a seat behind them was an older tan-skinned boy with narrowed eyes. A cute, pink Pokemon was cuddled onto his lap, sleeping soundly, oblivious to the noise and the occasional judders of the bus.

    The dark-haired boy was called Ash Ketchum, and he was perhaps the most ecstatic person on the bus, although he somehow managed to contain his excitement. To be a Pokémon Master had been his dream for a long time, and he knew that advancing at the Platinum Frontier would be one step closer to that goal. The only setback was that it had been a horrendously long journey; they had been travelling on the same bus for almost two days straight. On the bright side, some of the scenery that they had passed was amazing.

    They weren't seeing very much at the moment, though. It was still drizzling slightly outside; the little droplets of water dotted the bus's windows and drizzled down them like tears. On the left side of the bus, where they were sitting, was a craggy mountain wall. On the right side was supposedly a huge valley, but the darkness meant that practically nothing was in sight.

    The older boy, Brock, sighed and stroked his sleeping Pokémon, Happiny, gently on the head. He leaned backwards in his seat and rested his head, struggling to stay awake. The racket that was surrounding him seemed very distant to him in his weariness. None of the other trainers seemed to be the least bit tired.

    He was about to close his eyes to rest when he noticed Ash leaning forward in his seat, as if trying to look underneath it without standing up.

    "What are you doing, Ash?" the black-haired girl, Dawn, asked.

    "Aw... I can't see..."

    "What are you looking for?" Brock asked, lifting his head and peering at Ash curiously.

    "Pikachu. I can't see him," Ash replied, still leaning forward. "He was here a moment ago. I can't – ouch!" The bus shuddered fiercely and he bumped his head on the seat in front of him. He sat up, groaning.

    Dawn rolled her eyes. "He can't be far," she said, smiling.

    "He isn't," Brock said, grinning and glancing down at a yellow, thunderbolt-shaped tail sticking out from underneath Ash and Dawn's seat.

    Moments later, Pikachu's tail disappeared and it jumped up in front of Dawn, its little arms spread as wide as they could go.

    "PIKA!"

    Dawn's Piplup jumped so violently that it left its trainer's lap and landed in the aisle with a bump. The blue, penguin-like Pokémon flapped its little wings so ferociously it looked as if he would take off into the air at any moment. It squealed in surprise and thrashed on the spot as Pikachu stood on the seat between Ash and Dawn, looking very pleased with itself.

    Piplup eventually recovered from the surprise and chirped angrily at Pikachu, flapping his wings uselessly.

    "There you are," Ash said, patting his companion on the head and smiling. "You shouldn't scare Piplup like that!" he laughed.

    Piplup climbed back onto Dawn's lap and gave Pikachu an offended look before turning away.

    "You know how proud he is," Dawn giggled, cuddling her Pokémon close to her. "He won't look at you for days now!"

    Brock chuckled, not only with amusement but also with relief that the issue was solved and that perhaps he could get some shuteye before tomorrow. He was going to need it. He laid back his head again and sighed contently.

    The road ahead of them broadened slightly and the valley to their right extended another few miles. None of them were aware of the huge lake in the darkness below. Neither did they know about the Meowth-shaped balloon that was following them.

    "Say, Jess, why do we have to be followin' the twerps at this time o' night?" the cat-like Pokémon, Meowth, sighed wearily, rubbing his eye with his paw.

    "Yeah, couldn't we have waited until we could actually see them?!" James stifled a yawn.

    "You two don't get it, do you?" Jessie snapped, adjusting her binoculars and gazing down at the moving lights on the road below. "They'll be having a rest stop soon. That's when we swoop in and snag Pikachu. And just think about all the Pokémon that are on that bus. We can take as many as we like."

    "Yeah, but–"

    "We bin followin' em for hours!"

    "Are you two forgetting the promotion that the boss promised us if we – hey, what's that?"

    Jessie lowered her binoculars and pointed far out into the distance. James and Meowth followed her gaze.

    "You mean dat red stuff?"

    "The twerps are heading straight towards it."

    "Looks like a big red cloud..."

    "Goes on for miles."

    "Er... whatda ya say we turn back?" Meowth mumbled, his fist in his jaw. "I'ma gettin' a bad feeling about dat stuff ... Like I should keep away from it no matter what."

    "But what about Pikachu?!" Jessie raged.

    "What about sleep?!" James snapped back.

    "WOOOBBUFFET!"

    The three of them continued to bicker about their options while the bus headed straight towards the 'red stuff'. Ash and Dawn were chatting happily about the upcoming battles, while Brock sighed in frustration and gave up his attempts to sleep. Glancing out of the window, he noticed that something which looked like faint, pink mist was drifting past them. Frowning, he leaned closer to the window for a better look. In a matter of seconds, the mist had thickened and had turned from pink to a deep red.

    "Hey, you two," he said, tapping Ash and Dawn's shoulders. "Look at that."

    They all pressed their noses against the window and gasped. There was no mistaking it; this fog was red. Not even the mountain wall could be seen through its alarming thickness. The bus had slowed down considerably as well, and some of the other trainers were mumbling curiously about it.

    "Gotta be a practical joke or something... right?"

    "But who would be out here apart from us?"

    "Huh? What's wrong, Roselia?"

    A female trainer's Roselia had retreated underneath a seat, whimpering and trembling. Brock felt Happiny stir in his lap. The little Pokémon opened its eyes and began to wail loudly, as if in great distress.

    "Hey, what's wrong?" Brock said gently, holding Happiny close. But it wriggled and twisted aggressively, trying as hard as possible to get out of Brock's grasp, squealing loudly.

    Pikachu and Piplup looked at each other with some sort of confused terror upon their faces.

    "Pika-pi!"

    "Piplup! Pip!"

    Both Pokémon clutched their trainers tightly, shaking in fear and moaning to themselves.

    "Something's wrong," Dawn said, cuddling Piplup closely with a worried expression. "Why are all the Pokémon so frightened?"

    Brock, who had been trying to stop Happiny from running away, had no choice but to return the Pokémon to its Poké Ball. Dawn did the same with her Piplup.

    Ash held Pikachu as the little Pokémon shook in his lap. Frowning, he looked out of the window at the redness. "D'you think it might be the fog?"

    "I don't know." Dawn put Piplup's Poké Ball safely into her backpack. "I mean, red fog? That's impossible."

    For once, Brock had nothing to say. He simply stared out of the window at the strangely transfixing fog outside. The bus was going incredibly slow now, and it didn't look like a narrow road either. What was going on?

    Suddenly, the girl with the Roselia (who was now inside its Poké Ball) screamed in terror and leapt from her seat out into the aisle, landing sprawled out on the floor.

    "I-I... saw something! Oh my... what the hell – was that?!"

    Her friends grabbed her shoulders and pulled her to her feet. She was trembling all over and crying hysterically.

    "Lola, what's wrong?"

    "What did you see?"

    "Was it a Pokémon or something?"

    "N-No," Lola sobbed. Her friend gave her a handkerchief but she was in such a state that it merely slipped out of her shaking hands. "It was ... I-I don't know what it was, b-but ... It was h-horrible!"

    As Lola's friends tried their best to comfort her, Ash, Brock and Dawn exchanged nervous glances.

    "...Perhaps she was just seeing things?" Dawn suggested hopefully.

    "Or maybe it was just the fog playing tricks on her," Brock said, glancing at the window. "It happens occasionally."

    "Whatever it was, it sure scared her," Ash said grimly, watching as Lola sank to the floor again and almost fainted.

    "The driver hasn't said a word," said Dawn, sitting up to get a better view of the driver's head. "Surely this isn't normal for this area...?"

    Before anyone could reply, the bus jolted upwards violently, sending several people flying out of their seats. The driver slammed his foot down onto the brakes and the bus skidded through the mud and eventually came to a halt.

    "Are you guys OK?" Brock asked, securing his seat again after almost being thrown out of it.

    "M'OK."

    "Yeah."

    "What was that?!" Ash said as he continued to comfort the trembling Pikachu.

    "Do you think we hit something?" said Dawn.

    "Yeah, it felt that way," said Brock. "Let's hope it wasn't a Pokémon."

    The driver mumbled a few profanities before getting out of his seat and smacking his fist down on the button that opened the door.

    "Clearly this evening isn't going according to plan for him," Ash grinned as he watched the driver stomp outside into the fog, closing the door behind him.

    "I hope we didn't hurt a Pokémon," said Dawn apprehensively.

    Lola's friends were still trying to calm her down, but to no avail. The girl trembled and sobbed and gasped for air between spasms of tears. They eventually managed to get her to sit down on a seat.

    "It's OK, Lola, I'm sure it was just ... a pothole or something. Or a flat tire."

    "Yeah, it's no big deal."

    Lola attempted to speak, but only came out with a mixture of gibberish and hysterical sobs. Brock watched her sadly; just what had she seen to place her in such a state? Meanwhile, Ash and Dawn were looking for the driver out of the window, but the combined darkness and fog made it all the more difficult.

    Several long minutes passed, and the driver still had not returned. Ash shuffled restlessly in his seat.

    "Geez, where'd he go?"

    "No idea."

    "Hope he's OK..." Dawn wrapped her arms around herself and began to shiver. "It's getting cold. Did the driver turn the heater—"

    A shrill, high-pitched and extremely loud screech suddenly sliced its way through their ears. All three trainers groaned and covered their ears as the windows rattled due to the intense vibrations. The strip lights along the ceiling of the bus all shuddered before their bulbs exploded, raining sparks and glass shards down on them all. They lowered their heads and covered themselves with their hands. By now, the screech had ceased, and it had been replaced by the terrified screams of the other trainers. Lola had passed out.

    "OK ... what was that?" Ash's voice shook as he raised his head.

    "No idea," said Brock, brushing glass off of his shoulders, "but I don't like this. Not one bit."

    "Something's out there," Dawn trembled, rubbing her ears. "I know it. Lola wasn't seeing things. Something is out there and it's certainly not a Pokémon."

    "You're right. A Pokémon couldn't make a noise like that, no matter how hard it tried."

    Brock hesitated to move closer to the window, but Ash didn't. He pressed his nose against the glass and squinted hard.

    "I can't see anything."

    "So weird... why did the lights go out?" asked Dawn.

    "Dunno..."

    The three of them were silent for some time, while the other trainers screamed and cried and banged on the windows. One had even rushed over to the closed door and was trying to tug it open with no luck. Brock's heart began to hammer in his chest, Ash wiped a bead of sweat from his forehead and Dawn began to breathe deeply while fiddling with her hair nervously. Lola had miraculously woken up again and her head was raised towards the ceiling, screaming: "WE'RE GOING TO DIE!" over and over again. Her friends were too busy panicking to notice her.

    Brock couldn't hold himself back this time. He sprang from his seat and grabbed hold of Lola's shoulders and shook her until her eyes met his.

    "Stop it," he said sternly, but not unkindly. "We're not going to die! Don't panic, we're going to be—"

    Lola's eyes wandered away from his and she looked over his shoulder at the window. The expression on her face was one of pure terror. Her mouth wide open, she pointed a shaking finger at Brock's window. He turned and gasped.

    Blood. Blood had been splattered onto the window and was slowly running down it in the same matter as the rain. Ash gasped and Dawn retched, clutching her mouth.

    "Oh my... Is that – is that—"

    "The driver," Brock said quietly, trying to keep the calm in his voice. He was so transfixed by the red liquid on the window that he didn't notice Lola passing out again. Several of the other trainers noticed the blood and the panic increased.

    Just then, the horrid screech sounded again and there was a loud BANG coming from the bus's roof. Followed by another. The sound of claws scraping on metal tore at their ears.

    "There's more than one of them, whoever 'them' is," Brock shouted over the combined racket of the scraping claws and the screaming.

    "Oh god oh god oh god," Dawn whimpered, starting to cry. "They're trying to get in!"

    Another screech, followed by insect-like clicking noises. In the corner of Ash's eye, he spied something outside. It was only visible for a fraction of a second, but he saw more than he wanted to. "Oh my... guys, I think—"

    Something rammed into the side of the bus with enough force to leave a huge dent in the side. In fact, the vehicle almost tipped over, but it somehow managed to stay upright and it landed back onto its wheels with a crash. Before anyone had even had time to recover, it was charged again, and this time, they weren't so lucky.

    The bus rolled over onto its side, smashing most of the windows on the right. Seconds later, the terrible screech sounded again and the overturned bus was smashed into once again. Then it tilted upside down, but it didn't stay there.

    Momentum buffeted the trainers as the bus began rolling down the cliff. All of the windows shattered and pieces of metal flew from the sides after having been smashed off. Ash, Dawn and Brock were repeatedly battered against the walls, wincing as shards of glass slashed at their skin. Ash and Dawn eventually collided heads and both passed out. Brock held on long enough to hear one last screech from the top of the cliff before hitting his head on the steering wheel and falling unconscious himself.

    Little did the three of them know, they were the only ones still alive.
    My fanfiction, 'Pokemon Nightmare' can also be found on there.

    Team White


  4. #4
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    Cool. Red fog and then demon-like...things attacking the bus. I think it's interesting how the Pokemon could detect that the creatures were there before the trainers could.

    I like your description at the beginning. Excellent way of establishing the mood. ^^ Brock's attempt to comfort Lola was good as well; it seemed fitting for his character.
    I will be offline from January 2013 to October 2014.

    Greetings from the asylum of my insanity.
    Chapter 3 and cooler banner coming eventually. :P

    Dex: 128 created! ~ DA and LJ links coming later.

  5. #5
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    Thanks very much, I'm glad that you are enjoying this!

    I have a bit of planning yet to do for the next chapter, but I'll get it to you soon enough.
    My fanfiction, 'Pokemon Nightmare' can also be found on there.

    Team White


  6. #6
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    CHAPTER TWO

    ______

    (From Crimson Fog by Brock Harrison (published 2020); page 12)

    The thing that puzzled me most at the time was the possibility that the 'things' that had toppled our bus weren't Pokémon. To me, that thought was pure nonsense. After all, weren't Pokémon and humans the only creatures who inhabited this Earth? That's what I thought as well. People only believe what they see, and they don't even think about that chance that there may be more to this world than we originally perceived. Until all this, I was exactly the same. And let me assure you that this bus crash was just the beginning – we had seen nothing yet...

    * * * * *

    Darkness. Cold, black darkness. A low moan in the distance. Sounds like pain, distress, torment. A bright light. Must follow. Something's there. It's watching, waiting, plotting. A long, black hand. Floating. A red eye on the palm. Laughing. Lunging. Grabbing. Tearing. Blood. Tears.

    Death.


    With a gasp and a shudder, Brock's eyes snapped open and he found himself staring into the blurred faces of two strangers, one on each side of him. He was lying ... he wasn't sure exactly where, but the air was thick with smoke and a strange, metallic stench, like what a person's hand smells like if they've held a coin for too long. His leg hurt though, he knew that. His left one. Something hard and heavy was on top of it.

    A few seconds later, the pain hit him. While his mind wandered frantically for details as to where they were and what was going on, it was distracted by the sharp twinge in his leg, just below his knee. He groaned and tried to sit up, leaning on his elbows.

    By now, his vision had cleared, and he noticed that the two strangers were male, middle-aged paramedics. The one on his right had been prodding at his wrist, checking for a pulse, and when Brock suddenly sat up, he seemed to have been taken by surprise. By the look on his face, he seemed to be thinking: Oh my god, the corpse is alive!

    "Whoa, easy there," the other one said, gently seizing Brock by the shoulders and trying to lie him down again. "Stay still for us, that's it..."

    The second paramedic had seemingly recovered from the brief shock and was starting to unwrap a bandage. "Your leg is trapped," he said. "It's not life-threatening, but we need to try and get it out before you lose too much—"

    "What's going on?" Brock asked, his voice hoarse and dry. Somehow he managed to stay upright, despite the fact that the paramedic was still trying to get him to lie down. His mind was numb, devoid of any other thoughts except: "What happened? Where—"

    "It's OK, there's been an accident. You'll be—"

    Of course!

    He saw the scarlet fog, the shattering lights, the bloodied window. He heard the terrified screams and cries of the other trainers, the unearthly screech that had deafened the silence, the metallic scraping of the roof...

    How the hell am I even alive...? Wait, the others!

    Ignoring the protests from the paramedics, and somehow managing to overpower the one that was holding his shoulders, Brock sat upright. Every part of him carried a dull ache, as if he had been beaten to within an inch of his life. He felt a slight tickle as something drizzled down his cheek. Touching it while looking around, he realised that he wasn't the only one who was leaking the red stuff.

    The bus was in complete tatters; in fact, it didn't even look like a bus anymore; just a big heap of metal and glass strewn about all over the place. There were many more paramedics nearby, all of them either bending down, talking in an undertone or hauling body bags into a nearby ambulance.

    "I must insist that you—"

    "Where are my friends?" Brock asked frantically, beating the paramedic's hand away. "Are they OK? Did they make it?" He glanced over at one of the limp body bags being dragged away. He couldn't bear the thought of one of them containing Ash or Dawn...

    "We don't know yet," said the paramedic on Brock's left. He noticed from his name tag that he was called Tomas. "For now, we need to free that leg of yours."

    "My leg?"

    For a moment he had forgotten about the sharp pain that was eating at his left leg. Looking down, he noticed that a piece of metal had pinned it down. The razor-sharp ridge was digging into the skin just below the knee. His jeans had been ripped open and blood was slowly staining them.

    He could only think of one thing to say: "That's it?"

    The other paramedic, John, raised an eyebrow at him. "Sorry?"

    "That's all? I mean ... how could I have gotten out of such a crash with just a bad leg?" Again, he touched the blood staining his cheek. "And head."

    "You're a lucky kid, I'll give you that," said Tomas, smiling. He had grabbed a pair of metal forceps out of his bag and was applying them to the debris on Brock's leg.

    "Lucky..."

    'Luck' wasn't the right word for it. Seeing as everyone else was leaving the scene in a bloodied, mangled mess, Brock considered himself to be the one blessed by a miracle. The only trouble was that his mind was still messed up from the bump, and his thoughts came in jumbled, unintelligible gibbers. So much so, he had almost forgotten about –

    "Ash! And Dawn!" He strained himself, pulling at his leg, but then threw back his head and cried out as the glass-sharp metal buried itself further into his leg.

    "Don't do that," said John. "You'll only make it worse. You want to actually keep your leg, don't you?"

    Brock waved his hand impatiently. "Tell me where they are. I need to know—"

    "Well, Lucy is tending to a young girl behind you. Maybe you know her?" John said hopefully.

    Brock twisted himself round as best he could, but there was no way that he could see behind him, not like this. Instead, he turned his head and strained his ears to try and pick up on what the girl was saying. At first, he heard the agitated voice of a young woman, but he did not recognise it.

    "Don't move it, just keep it still. Honestly, don't worry. We'll find your friends."

    He then heard a younger-sounding voice, but it was so choked up by tears that, at first, Brock did not know who it was.

    "Oh g-god, p-please let them – let them be OK."

    "They will be, they will be..." the other voice replied uncertainly. "What's your name, sweetheart?"

    "D-Dawn."

    Before Brock could shout out that he was all right, John placed his hand on his shoulder. "This will hurt," he said. "Try to endure it."

    Puzzled, Brock turned back round to find that Tomas had fitted the forceps onto the metal plate that was trapping his leg. He pressed down onto it, and the piece of metal was forced upwards. Brock bit his lip to stop himself from screaming as the thin edges of the metal were separated from the nerves in his leg. He'd never felt pain like it, but he wasn't going to scream, no way.

    After a moment, the scrap of metal was off and Brock caught his breath, relieved that it was over. Tomas was saying something, but he wasn't paying attention. Instead, he rolled over and crawled over to the two girls behind him. One of them was a young, attractive woman of about twenty, and she had wavy, black hair neatly tied back into a ponytail. The other younger girl was—

    "Dawn!" Brock cried, dragging his injured leg behind him and ignoring the protests from Tomas and John. "Dawn, I'm here! Are you OK?"

    Dawn turned around, her dirty, tear-stained face brightening as soon as she saw him. Barely able to control herself, she wrapped an arm around him and hugged him tightly. The other arm was heavily bruised and was resting on her lap.

    "Oh B-Brock, thank g-god – I th-thought—" she sobbed into his shoulder, barely able to speak. She pulled away from him and stared intently at his face, as if trying to confirm that he was actually there. Sniffing, she wiped her good arm across her wet face and stammered, "Have y-you seen Ash?"

    "No, but I'm ... I'm sure he's alright. I hope so. They'll find him."

    "How hurt are you?" Dawn asked, her eyes fixing upon the blood on his cheek. "M-My arm ... Lucy says that it's – it's broken." While speaking, she occasionally paused to forcibly swallow. She was trembling all over.

    "You're lucky to get away with just that and a few cuts and bruises," the female paramedic, Lucy, said as she got out a splint for Dawn's arm. She briefly turned her attention to Brock. "You're her friend?"

    "That's right."

    "Don't you think you should get that leg of yours needs to be looked at?" Lucy said, not looking up. "I mean, you'll pass out if you lose too much blood."

    "I know, I know," Brock sighed, "but I need to know if Ash is OK. Have they..." he swallowed, "...found him yet?"

    "I've no idea," Lucy said absently as she gently applied the splint to Dawn's shaking arm. "Some of the dead are beyond recognisable. But if you want to know what's going on, you're best off asking Jenny." She pointed her thumb over her shoulder towards where an Officer Jenny and a paramedic were standing next to a tall, chain-linked fence. "But first I think you should— hey, wait!"

    Brock didn't need telling twice. Ignoring the pain, he somehow staggered to his feet. His leg felt as if a knife was embedded into it, and he felt a trickle of blood drizzle down it, but he didn't care. He just had to know. Was Ash all right? And Pikachu, of course. What were those ... things that had attacked them? Thousands of questions were buzzing through his mind all at once. He knew he couldn't ask them all, but he had to try and cram in as many as he could before he either passed out or was dragged away kicking and screaming.

    Despite Lucy's protests, he began to stagger towards Jenny. Since the wound was below his knee, it hurt like hell to bend it, so he had no choice but to drag it along behind him like a cripple. Looking around properly for the first time in a while, he noticed that the atmosphere was still hazy, but there was nothing out of the ordinary about it. It wasn't red, for starters, and neither was there any monsters running around. The paramedic that was conversing with Jenny had left, and Brock noticed that behind the fence were several dark outlines of medium-sized buildings.

    A town?

    "Officer Jenny," he said, finally reaching her. "I need ... I need to ask you..." The walk of merely a few metres had tired him out, and his leg felt like it was about to fall off. Jenny looked at him, a combination of pity and irritation on her face.

    "Hey, what are you doing? You should be getting treatment."

    "I know ... I'm sorry, but I just need to ask you a few things," Brock said, struggling to keep his balance. The blood-loss wasn't helping one bit. "What were those ... monsters?! And why was the fog red? And ... and ... where are we?"

    Looking up at the huge fence in front of them, Brock felt a strange sense of trepidation. He almost felt as if he should stay as far away from those dark buildings as possible, but at the same time an overwhelming curiosity grew inside of him. He didn't need to be told; he just knew. It was as if someone – or something – had turned on a light in his mind, and that light illuminated everything. All was there and plain to see.

    "Ash ... he's in there," he said, pointing to the fence. "In that ... is it a town?"

    "Yes," said Jenny sternly. "And what makes you think that he's there? There's nothing special about that place." She began fiddling with her walkie-talkie as she spoke, not looking Brock in the eye.

    "But why is it sealed off?"

    "Because ... because something happened there a few decades ago. No one has lived there since. For the safety of the public, it's permanently off limits," said Jenny, still not looking up.

    "But why?" Brock persisted. "What happened?"

    "You don't want to know," Jenny replied, looking at him for the first time since he arrived. "Trust me. If you know what's good for you, you'll not set foot beyond this fence. Those who didn't listen to us are all dead now. You want to be next?"

    "No, but you don't understand. My friend is in there!"

    "How can you be so sure of that?" Jenny asked, exasperated. "You can't just randomly assume that he's in there. They still haven't found his body—" She abruptly stopped. "Sorry. They haven't found him yet. Maybe if you give me a description I can confirm whether they have or not."

    Brock opened his mouth to protest further, but decided that he'd be getting nowhere if he did. Instead, he began to give Jenny a brief description of Ash and he mentioned Pikachu as well. Jenny nodded slowly as he spoke and then pulled out a small notebook. He watched her as she flipped through its pages, frowning.

    "I'm afraid that no one we've found so far matches that description," she said grimly. "But keep your hopes up. If you and your friend over there have survived, Ash has just as much chance as you do."

    Brock had stopped listening at "keep your hopes up." His attention had been caught by the large sign that was hung up on the fence nearby. What he saw made his skin crawl.

    The top half of it was fairly standard: written in bold letters were the words 'DANGER! RESTRICTED AREA!' Underneath, 'KEEP OUT' had been raked out by what looked like dagger-like claws on five-fingered feet. In fact, the bottom line was almost unreadable. Written in small, red letters next to it were the words 'VISITORS WELCOME'.

    DANGER! RESTRICTED AREA! VISITORS WELCOME.

    Brock was so transfixed and disturbed by the sign that he didn't notice Dawn wander up to his side, cradling her broken arm, Lucy accompanying her.

    Jenny saw Brock looking at the sign and followed his gaze. She quickly turned back round again and said, "That's nothing but vandalism. Harmless graffiti. Sometimes gangs come here from the nearby town and cause trouble. Don't let that sign bother you."

    But it did bother them, and from the hasty way that Jenny was speaking, they now felt even worse about it. Whoever had vandalised the sign was inviting them all in, and they doubted that it was for battles and a friendly chat...

    Lucy snorted and folded her arms. "Oh really? That's what you tell everyone, is it?"

    Jenny didn't answer. Instead she pulled out her walkie-talkie and held it up against her ear. Assuming that she was just using it as an excuse not to respond again, Brock opened his mouth to protest, but closed it again when Jenny said, "Alright, thank you," into it and put it back onto her belt.

    "They've found your Pikachu," she told them. "He's hurt, but not too badly. He's safe."

    "Oh thank god, thank god," Dawn cried.

    "That's a relief," Brock sighed. "No Ash, though?"

    "They didn't mention him, no."

    Dawn began to shiver. "W-We need to find him. We'll help you!"

    "I'm afraid I can't allow that," said Jenny. "You two need to go to the hospital in Claret City nearby and get some treatment. We'll take care of everything here."

    "Even I'll have to agree here," Lucy said, flashing Jenny a brief, cold glare. "Come on, you two. Let's get you out of here. All this smoke and dust and stuff can't be good for us."

    As soon as they were out of Jenny's range, Lucy grumbled under her breath, "********. Vandalism, my backside. They'll tell you anything these days."

    "I knew she was lying," Brock growled, wincing as his leg unleashed a fresh wave of pain. "So what is going on here?"

    "Yeah, I mean ... surely if everything was OK here, they wouldn't be keeping so many secrets from us?" Dawn piped up.

    "And I still haven't gotten all my answers. Such as: what the hell were those things that almost killed us?"

    "And what was with that red fog?"

    "And why is that town sealed off like that?"

    Lucy quickly glanced around her to make sure that no one could hear her. Then she said quietly, "I'll be seeing you two later at the hospital. I'll tell you everything I know then."

    Both of them looked at her in bewilderment.

    "You know about it?" asked Dawn.

    "Yeah. Everyone around here does, but it's hardly ever mentioned nowadays. Still, I can see that you two aren't going to give up here, right?"

    "You got that right," said Brock.

    "Not until we know where he is and if he's OK," said Dawn. "He'd do the same for us."

    "He sounds like a good guy," Lucy said as she helped them to cross chunks of debris and twisted metal. "And I sincerely hope that he's all right."

    The ambulance was parked on a nearby road, its headlights cutting through the darkness and the fog. Lucy led them over to the back and helped them up the steps.

    "Wait, where did Jenny say they'd taken Pikachu?" asked Dawn.

    "She didn't," Lucy replied. "But I suspect he's been taken to Claret City's Pokémon Centre. It's right next door to the hospital, so you can go and get him as soon as you're free to go."

    "That's good. Thank you."

    Tomas and John joined them a minute or so later, both of them looking at Brock cautiously, as if expecting him to bolt again at any moment. John sat down next to Dawn and examined her arm, while Tomas took out an antiseptic spray for Brock's leg wound. Lucy got into the driver's seat and fired up the ignition.

    It felt has if someone had inserted scalding liquid into his leg, but Brock bit his tongue, determined not to make a sound. As the vehicle began to force its way up the winding, rocky hills back up towards the road, he and Dawn both gazed out of the back window, watching the crash site get smaller and smaller. The town was obscured by the fog, but now that they knew it was there, they could see it clearer than ever. Right next to that huge lake. In complete darkness.

    DANGER! RESTRICTED AREA! VISITORS WELCOME.
    My fanfiction, 'Pokemon Nightmare' can also be found on there.

    Team White


  7. #7
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    CHAPTER THREE

    ______________

    The ride to Claret City hospital was a long and apprehensive one. Brock and Dawn could barely keep their eyes away from the window, almost expecting the fog outside to redden and for the monsters to come swarming back to finish them off. But they didn't; in fact, the most eventful part of the thirty minute-long journey was Lucy suddenly turning round and candidly informing Tomas that she was sick of doing the night shifts and wanted to get some decent shuteye. She drove carefully but quickly, occasionally glancing at them both in the mirror and asking if they were all right.

    Eventually, they came away from the dark, foggy and dangerously narrow mountain roads and began to drive through a small suburb on the edge of the city. Both of them felt a lot safer here, since there was no longer the risk of plummeting down the cliff and going through a déjŕ-vu. Plus the fog was gone, which was even more of a relief since they could actually see whether anything was going to creep up on them.

    The entire journey was like this; shuddering at any moving shadow and flinching at any bump in the road. They kept telling themselves that it was OK, nothing was here and that Ash was perfectly fine, right as rain. In fact, he was waiting for them at the hospital ... yeah ... he was all right. He'd run up to them and greet them warmly, just as he always did. Pikachu would be sitting on his shoulder, grinning broadly. They'd laugh in utter relief that it was all over and then they'd walk out of there together and carry on their journeys without looking back. Ever.

    But he wasn't there, and their optimistic little fantasies were blown away as they limped, bloodied, battered and beaten, into the hospital reception. Lucy led them through corridors, into lifts and yet more corridors. Along the way, people were being wheeled past them that were in a much worse state than they were. Again, this reminded them just how lucky they'd been...

    Luck ... is that really what it is?

    Thankfully, the treatment was nowhere near as scary as they both thought it would be. Since Dawn had suffered with mild shock, they gave her an antibiotic and a drink of water while they bandaged her arm properly. By the time they had finished, it was double its usual size and was wrapped neatly in a large, blue plaster. Meanwhile, Brock's leg wound had been properly cleaned and carefully bandaged. Both of them had head wounds, so they were cleaned up as well and covered with a soft dressing.

    Blood pressure, pulse rates and temperature were tested and came out well. After the doctor gave them some painkillers and (in Brock's case) antiseptic sprays, they were allowed to go.

    Dumping the painkillers in their bag, never bothering to get them out again, they wandered out into the corridor. They had expected Lucy to be waiting for them, but she was nowhere to be seen. So instead of hanging around for her, they started to retrace their steps back to the entrance. Although they had to ask for directions on more than one occasion, they eventually made it out.

    The night air was pleasantly cool with a slight breeze. Squinting in the light of the streetlamps, they spotted Lucy leaning against the ambulance with her arms folded and her head down. As they approached, she looked up and smiled wearily at them.

    "Hey, are you feeling better?"

    "Not really, no," Brock replied, "but at least we didn't have to stay for longer."

    Lucy nodded slowly, never taking her gentle, hazel eyes off them. She examined their faces and frowned; she had it all figured out.

    "Look, I know that you two want to go back there to search for your friend, but it's completely out of the question. The police will be guarding the area heavily, and even if you do manage to get in, I doubt you'll ever get out again," she said.

    "But Lucy, we have to find him!" Dawn said earnestly. "If it was one of us who were missing, he'd do the same. Wouldn't he, Brock?"

    "Yeah," Brock nodded. "We just ... we just want to know where he is and what's happened. After that, our minds will be put at rest."

    "And you think that the only way you can find out is to enter that death-trap of a town?" Lucy laughed sadly and shook her head. "Oh no, no, no, you're nuts if you—"

    "But he's in there," Brock insisted. "Don't ask me how I know ... I just do." The strange feeling that he had gotten at the crash site was still there, and the more he thought about it, the stronger it became. "Please Lucy, we have to go down there and look for him."

    "We'll be OK; we have our Pokémon," said Dawn, as cheerfully as she could muster.

    Lucy groaned dramatically and sighed, throwing her head back and almost banging it on the wall of the ambulance. "You don't get it, do you?"

    "Please!" Brock and Dawn cried together.

    "Lucy, please, you have to help us," said Dawn.

    "We've made up our minds, and there's nothing you can say to change that."

    "I guessed that," Lucy groaned, reaching behind her and taking out her ponytail. Her long, black, wavy hair spilled freely over her shoulders. She was quiet for a moment or two, then finally said quietly, "Alright, I can tell that you won't stop bugging me unless I agree, so yes, I'll take you down there."

    Brock felt an overwhelming urge to hug her, but suppressed it. "Thank you, Lucy. Really."

    "Don't thank me yet; if they send me out on another call I'll have to go. So you'd better be quick and go get your Pikachu." Lucy nodded to the large building next door with a big neon Poké Ball above the door. "Hurry up, before I change my mind."

    "Thank you Lucy!" Dawn cried, beaming at her. "Come on Brock."

    Brock turned to follow her, but quickly looked back at Lucy and said, "We appreciate this so much. Thank you. I owe you one for this."

    Lucy didn't reply, but he could see her blushing scarlet under her hair. He smiled at her before limping off after Dawn.

    The Pokémon Centre was fairly standard; a counter at the far end with a Nurse Joy standing behind it typing away on her keyboard and a few chairs and coffee tables scattered around. There was only one other trainer in there besides them; a young red-headed girl reading a magazine, her hair concealing her face, a steaming cup of coffee on the table in front of her.

    They wandered up to the counter and were greeted warmly by Nurse Joy. She briefly examined their worn-out faces with an expression of worry, but said nothing. Brock told her that they had come for Pikachu, and she nodded and disappeared into the back room. Dawn kept glancing at Brock expectantly, obviously surprised that he had not attempted to ask Nurse Joy out yet.

    "...Do you think that we'll find him?" she asked quietly.

    "He's definitely in there," Brock replied, staring straight ahead at an advert posted on the wall in front of them. "I know it, Dawn. Don't ask me how. I know that you and Lucy think that I'm just being naive and stubborn, but I'm telling the truth."

    "I do believe you," she said. "It's just that ... what if we get there and we can't find him?"

    "Then we'll keep looking until we know the truth."

    "...Brock? Is that you?"

    Both of them turned round to notice that the red-haired girl was standing behind them. Red hair tied up into pigtails, tomboyish clothing—

    "Misty!" Brock exclaimed. "What are you doing here?"

    "Sightseeing, of course," Misty beamed. "Wow, it's great to see ... you." Taking a proper look at their faces, her smile faded. "Hey ... what happened to you two? And," she glanced around briefly, "where is Ash?"

    Brock and Dawn looked at each other and sighed. Then they told her everything that had happened to them; the red fog, the 'things', the bus crash and that Ash had disappeared. When they had finished, Misty looked both dumbfounded and terrified.

    "Oh my god ... it's a miracle that you're both all right."

    "Yeah..."

    "So ... does anyone have any idea where Ash is?"

    "I do," said Brock. "I think he's in that old, abandoned town a few miles away from here. We crashed at Sapphire Peak, right next to it."

    Misty raised an eyebrow. "Isn't that place off-limits? I'd heard some pretty creepy stuff about it."

    "Yes, but we're going there anyway."

    "You're so stubborn," Misty sighed, folding her arms. "What makes you think that—"

    Brock knew what was coming. "I don't know! I ... I just know. Don't ask me how."

    "I won't, then," Misty sighed again. She was quiet for a few moments, staring at the floor, frowning. She eventually said, "Alright, whatever you're planning, I'm coming with you."

    "Really?"

    "Of course! I'll never rest until I know that Ash is OK ... Wait, what about—"

    "Pikachu!" The little, yellow Pokémon jumped out of Nurse Joy's arms at soon as he saw them, landing in Brock's. His fur had a few faint bloodstains on it, but otherwise he looked relatively unharmed. He held on tightly, as if terrified of being let go again. He looked up at Brock hopefully and said quietly, "Pika-pi?"

    Brock knew by now what that meant. "Don't worry, we'll find him," he said, stroking the Pokémon's fur gently.

    "Come on," Dawn said after introducing herself to Misty. "Let's get going. Lucy is waiting for us."

    "Who's Lucy?" asked Misty after they had thanked Nurse Joy and Chansey.

    "A new friend. She's going to take us down there," replied Dawn.

    "And hopefully she's going to tell us more about that place," Brock said as they wandered back outside.

    He and Dawn breathed a sigh of relief that Lucy was still there. She looked up, saw Misty and raised an eyebrow. "Bringing anymore women with you?" she asked Brock flippantly.

    "Nope, this is it," Brock grinned back. "You ready?"

    "Sure."

    Lucy opened the back doors to the ambulance and ushered them all in. After giving Pikachu to Misty, Brock sat in the passenger seat after being helped up by Lucy.

    "There aren't any seat belts back there, I'm afraid," she said, getting into the driver's seat beside him. "Just ... hold on tight, yeah?"

    The engine roared into life and they set off down the dimly lit, near-deserted roads, Misty and Dawn holding onto anything they could find in the back. Behind Brock and Lucy was a little open window, so they could still hear each other.

    "So ... what do you know about that place?" Dawn asked as they turned the corner leading out of the hospital's car park.

    "More than I want too," Lucy replied grimly. "Talk about horror stories. That place was really messed up forty years ago. No wonder everyone's dead."

    Those last four words send a chill down everyone's spine.

    "I hope you guys aren't going to have second thoughts when I tell you all this, because it might be too late to turn back," said Lucy. She then asked jokily, "Are you all sitting comfortably? Good. Now ... where to begin...?"
    My fanfiction, 'Pokemon Nightmare' can also be found on there.

    Team White


  8. #8
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    It felt has if someone had inserted scalding liquid into his leg, but Brock bit his tongue, determined not to make a sound. As the vehicle began to force its way up the winding, rocky hills back up towards the road, he and Dawn both gazed out of the back window, watching the crash site get smaller and smaller. The town was obscured by the fog, but now that they knew it was there, they could see it clearer than ever. Right next to that huge lake. In complete darkness.

    DANGER! RESTRICTED AREA! VISITORS WELCOME.
    That was so cool!
    He and Dawn breathed a sigh of relief that Lucy was still there. She looked up, saw Misty and raised an eyebrow. "Bringing anymore women with you?" she asked Brock flippantly.

    "Nope, this is it," Brock grinned back. "You ready?"
    Best line ever! XD

    Lucy is pretty brave to go along with them even if they might not come back...and Brock is certainly determined in his goal to find Ash. And speaking of which, I wonder what's happening to Ash right now...

    Overall, an excellent two chapters. Great job!
    I will be offline from January 2013 to October 2014.

    Greetings from the asylum of my insanity.
    Chapter 3 and cooler banner coming eventually. :P

    Dex: 128 created! ~ DA and LJ links coming later.

  9. #9
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    Thank you very much! Oops, I almost forgot to post this one. XD

    _________________

    CHAPTER FOUR

    "Well, apparently, it used to be such a nice little place," Lucy began, hurling the ambulance round a sharp bend. Misty and Dawn in the back held onto whatever they could to avoid being thrown about. "Quite a popular tourist attraction, too. A lot of people went there for the water sports on the lake and to do some hiking on the mountain. But there were a load of posh hotels around and on the lake front. You could do pretty much anything you wanted there."

    "So, what happened?" asked Dawn.

    "I'm getting there," Lucy replied, turning on the radio. A heavy metal song with soaring female vocals began to play. "My parents actually went in their late teens for a summer getaway. I can remember them telling me about it. My dad loves fishing, so he spent a lot of the time at the lake and then boasting about a huge Magikarp that he had caught to my mum." She laughed quietly. "Typical Dad ... Anyway, they said that it was one of the nicest places they'd ever been to. Great food, friendly locals, superb sightseeing ... Who'd have thought that it was going to go so terribly wrong?"

    She paused a moment to turn another corner, her fingers tapping on the steering wheel in time with the music. Everyone watched her, almost holding their breath in anticipation. Dawn had released her Piplup, and he and Pikachu were playing with a box of Snap cards that they had found, showing each other the pictures.

    "Anyway, an outbreak of flu arrived sometime in the winter of 1972. Well, they thought it was flu at the start, since the symptoms were pretty much the same. Both humans and Pokémon were catching it, so that was a worry. Although doctors tried everything they could to cure the virus, they didn't have any luck. The authorities also tried to track down the cause of the disease and to dispose of it, but their efforts were in vain as well."

    "Well ... that's not anything out of the ordinary, right?" said Misty. "I mean ... how does it connect to any of the other stuff?"

    "Hang on; I haven't got to that part yet," Lucy said as she quickly braked to avoid a red light. Everyone grunted as they were thrown forward. Lucy didn't seem to notice. "As I was saying, the virus just continued to get worse and worse. Eventually, they decided to evacuate any tourists that were there." She visibly shuddered. "When I first started this job, I had a look at the medical records of that place, just out of curiosity, y'know? It wasn't the flu, I can tell you that."

    Everyone leaned forward eagerly. Even Pikachu and Piplup had quietened down long enough to listen.

    "The symptoms continued to worsen, some people even being unable to get out of bed. While the human sufferers were mainly just bedbound all day, the Pokémon began to show really weird patterns of behaviour ... Very out of character for them."

    "What did they do?" asked Brock.

    "Well ... some of them turned on their trainers. I don't mean that they fried them with a Flamethrower or anything like that; I mean that their attacks were vicious and bloodthirsty. One trainer was even killed by his Scyther. It cut his throat open. Now that was what worried people."

    Nobody said a word, motionless with shock. Eventually, Misty was the one to break the silence.

    "What happened after that?" she whispered.

    By now, they had driven away from the busy city areas and were now travelling through the suburbs. It was a lot darker and there were fewer cars on the road, so Lucy slowed down. The fear was creeping back into Brock and Dawn; it wasn't far now. Without the bright lights of the busy city streets dancing over their laps, the tension was starting to get to them once again.

    Lucy turned the radio up slightly as another song came on. This time it was a fast, power metal track with male vocals. By the way that she was drumming her fingers on the wheel in perfect timing with the drum beats, they concluded that she knew the song well. Somehow, it made them feel a little better knowing that Lucy was at ease. For the time being, at least.

    She was quiet for a few moments, but eventually said, "Well, people were terrified, of course. That Scyther was put down since it had become almost impossible to restrain, and the other Pokémon were carefully monitored from then on. But it wasn't just those who were infected that were acting strange. No ... the others did as well."

    "You see, the town used to be quite religious and it had an impressive church. But all of a sudden, they began to worship this strange god that no one had heard of. Every evening they'd head over to the church and pray to this god for mercy and to heal the sick. It was so weird, almost as if they were brainwashed or something."

    "What was the name of this god?" Brock asked, a bizarre, haunting fear beginning to crawl over him without warning.

    "I don't know," Lucy replied, turning the radio down again as the song finished. "I don't think any of them knew what they were doing. Maybe it was a part of their faith that had been hidden for a long time. Either that or their minds truly had been tampered with."

    "How weird..." Misty said quietly. "Why would they suddenly do that?"

    Lucy shrugged. "Last resort, I guess. Anyway, I haven't even gotten to the worst bit yet."

    The roads were narrowing now, and although there were a few street lamps dotted on the sides of the path, the darkness was thicker than ever. Lucy brightened the headlights and slowed down even more. Something could easily catch up to them like this...

    "The church massacre, that's what really terrified people. After a few days, the non-religious people just let the believers get on with what they were doing. One night, they all piled into the church to worship this god, and an hour after they were due to come out, they hadn't. A woman went charging into the police station saying that she'd heard screams from inside the church. When the police broke into the place, every single person in there had been murdered."

    "By whom?" Dawn asked, her voice quivering.

    "They didn't know," Lucy replied. "But some of the ways in which they died were just ... weird. Some of them had been dismembered until they just resembled stumps with a head, if they were lucky enough to keep it, and one woman was found with what looked like thick, black roots wrapped around her body. Some people were covered in a sort of black liquid - they were the ones who no longer had any skin."

    Everyone felt ill, and the jolting bumps in the now-rocky road weren't helping one bit. Misty had grabbed a sick bag and was holding it near to her green face.

    "How horrible..." Dawn whispered. "Did they ever find out who did that?"

    "Nope. And that wasn't the end of it. Written on the church wall in blood was a Latin phrase: 'Veni, vidi, vici'. Surrounding that were loads of bloodied handprints, some of them too high up for any person to reach. That was what stumped them."

    "They thought that a – puh – Pokémon did that?" Brock asked, almost tempted to reach behind him and steal Misty's sick bag.

    "Well, people jump to hasty conclusions, don't they? After that, people were literally pissing themselves with fright. Some of them even packed up and left. Just abandoned their homes and ran off. They were the ones who survived. The sensible ones."

    "By this time, what was happening with the 'flu' virus?" asked Brock, swallowing.

    "To be honest, I don't really know. The medical records were a little vague sometimes, so it's hard to say. I do know that some of the human sufferers eventually died from the virus. Some did recover though."

    "What about the Pokémon?" asked Dawn.

    "They didn't die ... but they'd have been better off dead if you ask me."

    By this time, they had reached the road along the mountain and were carefully traversing its soggy, muddy path. They were on the same road that they had been on when the monsters attacked. Brock peered out of the window and tried to make some sense of the valley below. All he saw was a huge cloud of thick, silver fog that obscured it. The town. It was down there, within their view. What Lucy was telling them almost felt like some sort of old horror story, written by a poetic old bard with some time to spare and some morals to teach. But it wasn't; it was all real, and they could tell that Lucy hadn't even gotten to the worse part yet.

    "Now, I can't take you much further this way because we'll end up at the crash site," said Lucy. "Not only that, but it'll be heavily guarded by the police, and there's no chance that you'll get in then." She slowed down even more, so much so that one could easily walk along beside the vehicle. "But if I'm not mistaken, there's another road nearby which leads to the eastern side of the town. I'll take you down that way."

    "OK, thanks."

    Surely enough, after a few more yards, they took a sharp turn to the right and began to head down a dangerously steep bank that led into the valley. The darkness was thicker than ever now, and they could only see a few metres in front of them thanks to the headlights, which were cranked up to full-power. After a moment, the atmosphere began to thicken with thin, silvery strands of damp fog. Within minutes, it was all they could see.

    "Damn, this mist is ridiculous," Lucy exclaimed. "I can't see a thing."

    "Is it always this foggy down here?" asked Misty, lowering her sick bag, her face starting to regain its colour.

    "Yeah ... Oh right, I haven't finished telling you about the homicide, have I?" Lucy said, somewhat nonchalantly.

    Everyone gulped.

    "Homicide?" whispered Dawn.

    "Yeah. As I was saying before about the Pokémon, they didn't die. No one could quite understand why the humans were dropping like busted lifts and the Pokémon just continued to suffer. But then, without warning, the people started to change in nature as well. They ... sort of became the opposite of their previous selves. They started to become aggressive, greedy, wrathful ... It was as if their Dark sides were coming out of them. They couldn't control it. The crime rates soared in a matter of weeks, and some of them even started to commit murder. The place had gone insane."

    "Their ... Dark sides?" said Brock, that horrible fear starting to crawl back.

    "Yeah, but that's not the end of it. While the humans were going nuts; stealing from the bank, killing people and ... generally going insane, not many people noticed that the fog had descended ... Then, one day, it turned red."

    Everyone was on the edges of their seats, staring at Lucy although they all guessed what she was going to say next.

    "No one survived," she continued. "Everyone was murdered. Men, women, children..."

    "What about the Pokémon?" asked Misty, her voice trembling.

    For a few long moments, Lucy did not answer them. The road was starting to flatten itself now, and the fog was still as thick as ever. Then, in a low whisper that they had to strain themselves to hear, Lucy said: "They helped."

    "What do you mean?"

    "They helped to kill the humans," Lucy said. "They ... weren't really Pokémon anymore. They'd changed. Mutated. They were never going to be the same again."

    Everyone sat in a dead, stunned silence, barely able to comprehend what they had just heard. Pokémon ... killing humans? What in the world had happened to them?

    "I bet it was those horrible monsters," Dawn cried. "They did it. What were they? And ... and who could do such a terrible thing? Those poor, poor Pokémon..."

    "Hell if I know," Lucy grumbled, carefully guiding the vehicle down a narrow, winding road. "It was just chaotic. Of course, the people in Claret City got involved and the police went there to investigate. They never came out again ... Soon after that, the area was sealed off and ... well, that was the end of it. No one has spoken about it since then. It's a subject that people try to avoid these days."

    Brock, Dawn, Misty, Pikachu and Piplup didn't make a single sound for several minutes. The very thought of the fact that this wasn't a made-up horror story made them feel weak at the knees and sick at the stomach. And they were on their way there. Just how crazy were they?

    Brock probably felt the worst out of all of them. That strange fear still hadn't gone away, and no matter how many times he tried to reassure himself that it was alright, it wouldn't shift. Something about Lucy's story had triggered a nerve somewhere within him. Some parts of it were oddly familiar somehow...

    "Surrounding that were loads of bloodied handprints..."

    That vision that I had before I woke up at the crash site...? No, it can't be...


    He was so caught up in his thoughts and fears that he didn't hear Lucy telling them that they'd arrived.
    Last edited by Ocean Soul; 6th February 2011 at 12:27 PM.
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    CHAPTER FIVE

    _______________

    Before they knew it, they were in front of it again; the tall, chain-linked fence that separated them from the tainted town. The dark shadows of the buildings loomed above them, cutting through the silver fog like towering blades. After managing to find their nerve, Brock, Dawn, Misty, Lucy, Pikachu and Piplup all climbed out of the ambulance.

    The air was surprisingly cold with no traces of wind whatsoever. They all shivered and wrapped their garments around themselves in a bid to keep warm. The silence was starting to get to them; the only sounds that could be heard were their own crunching footsteps and their slow, steady breathing. The fog was so immense that they couldn't even see the vapour clouds creeping from their lips with every breath.

    Neither were they aware of Team Rocket prowling around nearby.

    "Yes!" Jessie hissed. "We've got them right where we want them."

    James and Meowth stared at her.

    "Well, not to be discourteous, but I don't exactly want to go in there," said James. "We won't even be able to see them in this fog."

    "Not only dat, but I still gots a bad feelin' about dat place," said Meowth, his fist in his mouth. "Makes my Poké-senses tingle, y'know?"

    "Don't tell me that you two are wimping out?" Jessie growled through gritted teeth, not taking her eyes off the hazy figures in the distance. "Think about it. They won't be able to see us in all this fog. Then we can—"

    "Sneak up on 'em!"

    "Oh, I get it now!"

    Jessie rolled her eyes. "Honestly ... Right, ready to go?"

    "Ready as I'll ever be," Meowth said quietly, gazing at the fog, transfixed. "I gots the heebie-geebies."

    "James, ready?" He did not answer her. "James?"

    He was staring at the ground. The expression on his face was hard to decipher; his eyes were alarmingly wide and his mouth hung open slightly. It was difficult to tell whether he was fascinated or terrified, perhaps both.

    Then, making them all jump in surprise, he shrieked, "OH MY GOD!"

    "What, what? What is it?" Jessie fell backwards onto her rear while Meowth tried to scramble up a tree. "Did you see something?"

    "A ... bottle cap!"

    "WOOOBUFFET!"

    Meanwhile, the group could've sworn that they heard a sound from somewhere behind them, but didn't have much time to think about it; Lucy had reached into the ambulance and came back with three torches, some rope and a small role of bandages.

    "Take them," she said. "You never know if you'll need them."

    "Thank you." Brock smiled at her as he passed a torch to Dawn and Misty and dumped the rope and bandages in his bag. "I guess you'll be heading back now?"

    "Yeah. I have to; knowing my luck I'll be getting another call before I can even have a coffee." She sighed deeply and looked at them all in turn; first Brock, then Dawn, then Misty. "...Please be careful. All of you. I don't ... really know what's in there, but I don't want to hear about anything bad happening to any of you. I'd feel responsible, and I'd never be able to get over the guilt."

    "We'll be all right," Dawn said, although she wasn't sure. "Don't worry about us."

    "And ... I sincerely hope that you find you friend, and that he's unharmed."

    "So do I," said Misty. "I swear he'll be getting a telling-off from me when we find him for putting us through this!" She shivered and wrapped her arms around her torso. "It's so cold here ... much colder than it was in Claret City."

    "Do you guys need anything else?" asked Lucy.

    "I don't think so," replied Brock. "Seriously, Lucy, I can't thank you enough."

    "Hey, it's nothing," Lucy said, blushing and twiddling with her hair, not looking Brock in the eye. "I can't refuse to help people who have a friend in need. I guess I'm just too helpful. Or stupid, I haven't decided yet."

    "Maybe we're the stupid ones," Misty muttered under her breath. She turned around to face the fence. "How are we going to get in? I don't see any doors or anything."

    "C'mon, the police aren't that dumb. Even they have their limits," Lucy grinned, stepping forward. "Oh wait, I've got an idea."

    She headed back over to the ambulance and leaned inside, searching though the glove compartment. To everyone's surprise, she came out with a Poké Ball.

    "You have Pokémon?" asked Dawn, staring at the ball as if she'd never seen one before.

    "Yeah, a few. They're my friends more than anything."

    Lucy hurled the Poké Ball up into the air, and in a brilliant flash of light, a Sneasel appeared. She commanded it to use Slash on the fence, and it did exactly as it was told; running towards the fence, claws extended, it cut a hole into it. The torn piece of fence fell to the floor, leaving a fair-sized hole for them to enter through.

    The Sneasel grinned smugly at its work before disappearing back into the Poké Ball.

    "There," Lucy sighed, returning to the vehicle and putting it away. "Anything else I can help you with today?" she asked sarcastically, grinning.

    "I think you've done more than enough," Dawn smiled. "Thank you, Lucy."

    "Yes, thanks," Misty piped up.

    "I won't say 'you're welcome', but I'm glad that I was able to help." Lucy's gaze turned to the hole in the fence. "You'd better go in then. No time like the present, right?"

    "Right..."

    Pikachu hopped up onto Brock's shoulder, while Piplup kept close to Dawn's feet. The three of them walked in single-file towards the fence; Brock in the lead, followed by Dawn and Piplup and then Misty. They tried to forget everything that Lucy had told them for a while ... just until they got in there. They couldn't back down now; they had come too far for that. Brock had already decided that they would not leave without Ash, dead or alive, and the two girls kept questioning his sanity to themselves. It wasn't like Brock to be so reckless...

    VISITORS WELCOME.

    "Good luck," Lucy called from behind them. "Bring me back a souvenir for all my hard work!"

    "Will do," Brock called back, giving her a small wave.

    In turn, they crouched slightly before entering the hole in the fence.

    It felt as if someone had opened a freezer door; now that they were on the other side, it felt several degrees cooler than it had before. It was a strange kind of cold ... they couldn't quite put their fingers on it. Instead of the usual cold that winter brought, this felt as if the atmosphere had been drained of something ... and now, only the cold was left...

    They all stood up again after entering and had a look around. The fog made things almost impossible to see, but by the way that the road was widening, it looked like a high street of some sort, with rows of buildings on either side. A few old cars sat, abandoned, in random places on the road, their doors hanging off their hinges.

    Brock swallowed. "All right ... come on. Let's waste no time."

    He began to limp forward, the others following shortly afterwards. They had taken no more than ten steps when a loud, clanging noise almost startled them off their feet, followed by the screech of scrapping metal. It was coming from behind them. They turned.

    The fence had repaired itself.

    "B-But ... how did—" Dawn stammered.

    Brock sighed. "Now it's definitely too late to turn back," he said.

    From the other side of the fence, they could hear the sound of a vehicle door closing, followed by the tired roar of the ambulance's engine.

    "Lucy's probably the only one of us with common sense," Misty muttered as they heard Lucy begin to drive away.

    Before anyone could reply, the most terrible sound tore at their ears. Tyres squealing, something screeching, somebody screaming...

    "Oh my god..."

    Those three sounds went on for a few seconds, like the intro to a macabre symphony ... or, perhaps, a chalk being scrapped onto a blackboard. Then they abruptly stopped, just like that. Cut off.

    "No..."

    Silence again. No screaming, no screeching; just a depressing, deafening silence that disturbed them even more than the symphony of death did.

    Before anyone could stop her, Dawn ran back up to the fence and rammed her good arm onto it, screaming, "LUCY!"

    "Dawn—"

    "LUCY, NO!"

    "Dawn!"

    She turned, trembling, a flood of tears pouring down her crumpled face. "Lucy is—"

    "I know," Brock said, fighting back tears himself. "But ... there's nothing we can do now."

    "But Lucy is—"

    "Dead," Brock said unexpectedly. Misty and Dawn stared at him in shock. "Lucy ... is dead. We can't do anything about it now. We have to ... let it go."

    "What are you saying?" Misty cried, her own eyes leaking. "We have to help her!"

    "We can't ... We're in here, and she is out there. We ... have to carry on. We have to find Ash."

    Both girls stared at him with wide, wet eyes, knowing that he was right. Dawn wandered back over to them, wiping her eyes. Misty sniffed and put an arm around her.

    "Come on; let's just get this over with," she said.

    Surely enough, the three of them faced back down the street and forced their feet to move in the direction that they needed them to. There was no turning back now.

    Outside, the red fog slowly morphed back into its usual silver.
    My fanfiction, 'Pokemon Nightmare' can also be found on there.

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  11. #11
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    Everyone watched her, almost holding their breaths in anticipation.
    I think the correct term is just "breath."
    "Nope. And that wasn't the end of it. Written on the church wall in blood was a Latin phrase: 'Veni, vidi, vici'. Surrounding that were loads of bloodied handprints, some of them too high up for any person to reach. That was what stumped them."
    Wow! I know I've heard that Latin phrase somewhere, but I don't know what it means!

    And the plot thickens! James and those bottle caps...haha, I should have known! And what happened to Lucy...that was freaky. That, and the whole story behind the town. It was beautifully constructed and very creative. Love the ominous fog, too. Keep up the good work! So excited for the next chapter!
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    Quote Originally Posted by GastlyMan View Post
    Wow! I know I've heard that Latin phrase somewhere, but I don't know what it means!
    "i came, i saw, i conqured"


    this just a great story. it's creepy and mysterious and just plain compelling
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    D: must read the new chapter....

    anyway it reminds me of a mix of Silent Hill, Cabin Fever, and another movie that i dont know the name of.
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    I think the correct term is just "breath."
    Ah, whoops. I was unsure about that. *casually wanders over to edit button* XD

    It was beautifully constructed and very creative. Love the ominous fog, too. Keep up the good work! So excited for the next chapter!
    Thank you so much!

    "i came, i saw, i conqured"

    this just a great story. it's creepy and mysterious and just plain compelling
    Yes, that's it!

    And thank you for the compliment.

    anyway it reminds me of a mix of Silent Hill, Cabin Fever, and another movie that i dont know the name of.
    Ah yes, I get quite a lot of inspiration from Silent Hill. I love it!
    Last edited by Ocean Soul; 6th February 2011 at 12:28 PM.
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    Skimmed it through and I like it so far. Anyways, time for the constructive criticism that I'll probably be bad at and the praise!

    Tyres squealing, something screeching, somebody screaming...
    Isn't it tires...?

    Well, that's the only spelling mistake I can find via skimming through. So far so good, Ocean Soul! Also, alas poor Lucy...(a cookie for whoever finds the reference)
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    thats awesome i hope theres more i luv the mystery and suspense keep up the good work

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    Thanks to everyone for their feedback, I appreciate it!

    CHAPTER SIX

    (WARNING: CONTAINS GORE AND DISTURBING IMAGES)

    ______________

    Upon opening his eyes, the first thought that sprang to Ash's head was: That's blood!

    And it was, on the ceiling, lots of it. Gasping, Ash sat bolt-upright but then wished that he hadn't. His head felt like it had been crushed like an old car at the dump, thudding in time with his rapid pulse. Otherwise though, he was relatively unharmed, other than a few cuts and bruises.

    He sat back, taking a moment to try and regain his senses, squeezing his eyes shut and clutching his forehead as another wave of pain pounded through it. His sense of smell had sharpened; there was a damp, musky scent wafting about, as well as something else. Something metallic.

    The pain started to ebb away, and he slowly opened his eyes and had a look around the room. Directly in front of him was a set of tall bars, travelling from the ground to the relatively low ceiling. The room was somewhat small in size, with moist, brick walls surrounding him.

    A prison cell?

    Looking out beyond the bars, there were a whole row of other cells opposite him and on either side. At first, Ash thought that they were all empty, but all that changed when he spotted a rotting corpse hanging from the ceiling of the cell opposite him. He retched and fell backwards, forcing his eyes away from the gruesome sight. They fell upon the left wall of his own cell and, again, he had to divert his gaze to avoid being sick.

    They looked as if a bleeding body had been used to clean them; they were soaked with blood from top to bottom. Hanging on small hooks were long, thin chains; on the bottom of which were huge cuffs. Ash's wrists hurt just looking at them.

    What is this place?

    Not really knowing what compelled him to do so, he turned back to the cell opposite him. He gasped; the hanging corpse was gone, no traces of it whatsoever.

    Was I just seeing things?

    Turning back into his own cell, he screamed and scrambled backwards against the bars, banging his head. The rotting, bloodied corpse was hanging right in the middle, a thick rope around its neck, a rhythmic creaking sound as it gently swayed from side to side, blood drizzling down its cheeks from where its eyes had been gouged out, a soft drip, drip, drip as the blood hit the floor.

    Not only that, but it looked just like Brock.

    "No, no, no!" Ash cried, twisting himself around and pressing his face between two of the bars. Then he wished that he hadn't. In the opposite cell, another corpse was lying up against the bars, its arms hanging out into the corridor, its mutilated, skinless face staring at him, half the flesh on its torso stripped off. It was female ... and it looked strikingly similar to Dawn...

    Whimpering, Ash pulled his own face back in and covered his eyes, his body now in fits of trembles.

    It's not real, it's not real ... Just a bad dream. A nightmare. None of this is real. It's OK, I'll wake up and everything will be OK ... OK ... OK...

    He began to shiver; there was a chilling drought coming from somewhere, but he couldn't bring himself to look at either of the dead bodies again, so he couldn't bring his hands away from his face to wrap them around him. The room was getting darker as well, as if a cloud had covered the sun. Cold ... so cold...

    He eventually started to shiver so violently that he began to have painful spasms in his back. Keeping his eyes tightly closed, he wrapped his arms around his torso and bunched up against the bars. The regular creaking sound had disappeared, as well as the dripping. Swallowing, Ash slowly opened his eyes. The corpse had disappeared again; the only trace left of it was the small puddle of blood on the floor.

    No ... it couldn't have been blood ... it was black. But it wasn't black before ... was it?

    The cold had become almost unbearable, almost as if it was in the middle of an icy day in winter. His chest was still tight with fear, but every gasping breath that he took sent vapour clouds into the air. There was an odd, faint squeaking sound. A Rattata, perhaps? No. It was ice; the walls were becoming encrusted with it.

    Despite all this though, the black puddle seemed to be expanding, ever so slightly.

    Then, as if Ash wasn't terrified enough, he heard a voice; a cold, harsh, deep voice that sent further chills down his spine.

    My, my ... what do we have here? It's not very often that I get a visitor. Welcome.

    Ash immediately turned his frightened gaze outside, expecting to see someone there, but there wasn't. The second carcass had vanished as well, much to his relief. The draught was getting colder and stronger. Even the shadows were starting to shiver...

    "Who's there?" he asked. He tried to make his voice sound strong and aggressive, but failed; he sounded as if he was about to burst into tears. Perhaps he was. "S-Show yourself!"

    I can't do that. Not while I'm in your world. But you will be seeing me eventually, when I am stronger. And you will help me to regain my strength, won't you?

    "No, I won't," Ash growled, staggering to his feet. His eyes wandered frantically across the floor for anything that he could use as a weapon in case something sprang out at him. A metal pipe, a knife, anything. But there was nothing; just that ominous pool of black blood on the ground which, despite the bitter cold, didn't appear to be freezing over at all. In fact, it was still expanding, very slowly...

    Oh you will. I'll make sure of it. Do you know who I am?

    "No, and I don't want to know!" Ash snarled, turning on the spot to try and get a glimpse of whoever was talking to him. He saw nothing, heard nothing, felt nothing except for the cold. Although he did notice that the shadows in the top corner of the cell were quivering, despite the fact that there was no candlelight or anything that could've caused it. "Where are my friends?"

    Hm? Your friends? The voice sounded careless, almost as if it was mocking him.

    "Yes, my friends! Where are they? Are they alright? If you've hurt them, I'll—"

    You're a bit slow, aren't you? the voice laughed. Isn't it obvious? Well, there's one of them...

    Ash hadn't stopped whirling round and round, and collided with the hanging corpse that had once again reappeared. He screamed and fell backwards against the wall, covering his eyes and whimpering.

    "Not real, not real, not real—"

    And if you look to your left, the voice continued, mimicking a tour guide, you'll see corpse number two. Please, no flash photography.

    Surely enough, the Dawn lookalike corpse was back in the opposite cell, her arms hanging out of the cell, reaching towards him.

    "Not real, just an illusion, not real—"

    Got it now? Your friends are dead, the voice said, its tone filled with some sort of twisted glee. Dead, dead, dead, dead, dead as doornails. I've already started on them; so far, they're delicious.

    He couldn't believe it, he mustn't! They weren't dead; if he could survive, then they could as well. This was just some sort of sick, twisted trick, an illusion. They weren't dead, not dead, not dead, not dead...

    "You ... YOU LIAR!" Ash suddenly screamed, looking up. The corpses had disappeared again. "You're lying to me! Th-They aren't dead! You're a liar and I won't believe you!"

    The voice tutted mockingly. You asked me what happened to your friends, and I told you. There's no need to yell at me like that.

    "Just tell me the truth!"

    I DID! The voice's mimicking bellow shook the shadows like spider webs in a gale. Wow ... are humans that stupid?

    "I still ... refuse to believe you," Ash said, gritting his teeth and staring at the opposite wall. "I don't know who you are, or what you are, so why should I trust you?"

    The voice didn't respond. The cold draught seemed to be moving past Ash, towards the back of the cell. Any shadows that darkened that side of the room seemed to shiver whenever the breeze reached them, like cobwebs in the wind.

    Oh! Right, right, it eventually said abruptly. I almost forgot – not all of your friends are dead. That yellow rat-thing of yours is still alive.

    "Pikachu?" Ash sat up. "He's alive? Where is he?" he demanded. "Tell me!"

    Pfft ... be patient, he's right here.

    Surely enough, Ash glanced to his left and saw Pikachu looking at him and, thank goodness, he was alive ... barely. His little body was weak, skinny and malnourished, and his fur was stained with blood. He looked at Ash helplessly with heavy, bloodshot eyes. They were pleading him. For help.

    "Pikachu..." Ash reached out his hand to touch the Pokémon, but it whimpered and backed away from him. "It's OK, it's me." It was then that he noticed its tail.

    It had a v-shaped dent in it. If Ash wasn't mistaken, this was an indication that this Pikachu was a female. His was male.

    All at once, his feelings changed for the poor Pokémon in front of him, quivering against the bars. Although he felt for it, he couldn't help but feel somewhat hostile towards it – or her, rather. It was an impostor, a fake, not his.

    "That's not my Pokémon."

    Hm? Are you sure? the voice queried in mock surprise.

    "Yes. Certain."

    Huh ... they all look the same to me. Ash couldn't tell whether it was being serious or not. My mistake. Let me just get rid of that for you...

    Ash hadn't noticed just how big the black puddle had grown. It was at least a metre wide on all sides, black as ink, thick as blood. The liquid began to quiver and ripple rapidly. To Ash's horror, several long, black, root-like tentacles came wriggling out of it. They snaked and twisted and squirmed through the air until they almost reached the ceiling. They halted completely for a moment, before lurching downward at an incredible speed and seizing hold of the Pikachu and pulling her towards the puddle. The Pokémon screamed in agony as she thrashed and twisted, but they kept an iron grip on her and didn't even flinch when she unleashed a Thunderbolt on them. There was a hissing sound and a revolting smell ... the smell of burning flesh and roasting fur...

    "NO! Stop!" Ash cried, reaching forward. Without hesitation, he grabbed hold of one of the 'roots' and pulled hard. At first, his hand was numb, but a few seconds later, it hit him. An excruciatingly painful burning sensation ate away at both of his hands. At first, he refused to let go – this Pikachu would be crushed, burnt or strangled unless he helped her – but eventually he had no choice but to release his grip. He fell backwards, screaming. He lifted his trembling hands to see what damage had been done.

    The skin on the palms of his hands had almost been completely burnt off. Purple nerves had surfaced on them, leaking pus and blood. For the moment, it was almost completely numb, but the soft tingling told him that he'd be having a lot of trouble with them eventually.

    The Pikachu seemed to be feeling the pain though; she twisted and wriggled and unleashed one Thunderbolt after another, each one weaker than the last. She screamed in pain as the burning-hot 'roots' singed her fur, ate at her skin. She was barely visible under the 'roots' now; they had wrapped themselves around her so much that she now resembled a bee with two ears and a lightning bolt tail.

    Coming back to his senses, Ash forced his eyes away from his burnt hands and cried, "NO! Please stop it! Let her go!"

    The 'roots' ceased their movement for a moment and the surface of one of them quivered. A large, red eye appeared on it, leering at Ash.

    You want me to release her?

    "Yes," Ash said, shuffling forward, ready to catch the poor Pokémon as it fell, even if it did damage his charred hands further. "Yes, let her go."

    Tell me to release her.

    "I already have! Just do it!"

    Tell me to release her!

    "Release her!" Ash cried desperately. "Please, please, release her!"

    The voice let out a malicious, almost mischievous chuckle. The red eye on the tentacle closed slowly; the others slowly began to move the immobile Pikachu towards Ash. He nodded and held out his hands ready to catch the Pokémon. He hoped he wasn't too late, and wasn't looking forward to seeing what damage had been done...

    But then, to Ash's horror, many more tentacles came shooting out of the black puddle and wrapped themselves around the Pikachu, squeezing until Ash could've sworn he heard a sickening crack coming from the Pokémon's spine. The smell of burning fur and flesh was revolting. The roots that had wrapped themselves around the Pikachu's top half seemed to be pulling to the left; the opposite direction of the ones on the bottom.

    As you wish.

    They pulled. Hard. In opposite directions.

    The Pikachu was torn in half.

    As soon as this happened, Ash had thrown his arms in front of his face to avoid the sight. He couldn't bear it. Anything but this. Although it was not his Pokémon, he still felt that he had a connection to it. It was no different to his, after all. It was a Pokémon; an innocent Pokémon...

    ...That had died because of his words.

    Not real not real not real ... Just a nightmare nightmare nightmare ...Vision illusion not real...

    The hot blood that had splattered onto his arm told him otherwise.

    There we go! the voice said, sounding quite satisfied with itself. There were two squelching thuds as the two halves of the Pikachu were dropped onto the floor. Dinner is served.

    Ash couldn't look, he wouldn't. Couldn't bare it. Hasn't happened, just a nightmare—

    Pfft ... What's wrong? You told me to release it, so I did. Isn't death supposed to be a release?

    Not answering can't answer you tricked me cruel sadist trick not my fault you tricked me—

    Then again, I did not create Death for it to be a release, but that's how some people have interpreted it, I guess. What can you do?

    Who is this what is this I don't know I'm scared oh god help me please—

    You want to know who I am, don't you?

    Yes no I don't know just leave me alone—

    Let's put it this way: I have many, many names, all of which have been brought about by you lovely humans. They include Death – that's a common one – Famine, War, Greed, Wrath ... Oh the list goes on. But most people call me Evil. Now that's a name that I have grown rather fond of.

    Who is this it's not human it's not a Pokémon oh please someone help me—

    But since I'm such a nice guy, I'll let you call me by my real name; the one that was not given to me by humans. My true name.

    I don't want to know please just leave me alone you monster—

    I am Kradd.

    Upon hearing the name, a terrible feeling of pure dread crept into Ash. It was a bizarre fear that he couldn't figure out, but it was there, pounding away at the same erratic rate as his heart. He didn't understand – he had never heard this name before in his life; why was he so afraid of it?

    And guess what? I know your name too. It's Ash. Ash Ketchum. I know a lot about you, oh yes I do. I know all your fears, my friend. Every single one of them, no matter how big or how miniscule. Now... Kradd's voice became low and menacing. ...You're going to stay here in this cell like a good little human until I can use you properly, aren't you? Because if you don't, I may just have to expose a fear or two to you. Got it?

    Yes yes I get it please oh please just go away—

    How rude to not even look up ... Ah well, I'm getting bored so I'm going to leave you now.

    Yes please do that—

    Hey, look on the bright side – at least you have something to eat if you get hungry. Kradd laughed loudly. It was a terrible cackle that made Ash's insides tremble. Ta ta!

    Then he was gone. Although Ash's eyes were still squeezed shut and his face was still pressed up against his arm, but he could tell that Kradd had gone. Through his eyelids, he could see that the room was getting lighter, as if someone was opening the curtains. The bone-chillingly cold draught was gone too. Ash's back felt wet as the thin blanket of ice covering the wall began to melt, sending tears of cold water trickling down it.

    He's gone he's gone oh thank god please don't let him come back oh please oh please oh please—

    He still didn't dare to look up. He knew that the two halves of the dead Pikachu were there, but he couldn't bring himself to look, no way.

    Pikachu Dawn Brock are dead why oh why do I have to be the one who survives?

    Losing everything – his strength, his nerve and the will to live – Ash felt his side hit the ground as he began to weep.

    The black puddle had disappeared.
    Last edited by Ocean Soul; 9th July 2011 at 10:03 PM.
    My fanfiction, 'Pokemon Nightmare' can also be found on there.

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    wow thats cool

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    Although Ash's eyes were still squeezed shut and his face was still pressed up against his arm, but he could tell that Kradd had gone.
    "But" is unnecessary, seeing as you already have "although."

    That was awesome! Poor Ash...should be exciting to see if he gets rescued, or if he's going to be trapped even longer. Great job!
    I will be offline from January 2013 to October 2014.

    Greetings from the asylum of my insanity.
    Chapter 3 and cooler banner coming eventually. :P

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    Quote Originally Posted by GastlyMan View Post
    "But" is unnecessary, seeing as you already have "although."

    That was awesome! Poor Ash...should be exciting to see if he gets rescued, or if he's going to be trapped even longer. Great job!
    Whoops... There I go again! XD *goes to edit*

    And thank you! Here's chapter 7.

    _______________

    (From Crimson Fog by Brock Harrison (published 2020); page 43)

    Despite the fact that we tried to carry on like nothing had happened, Lucy's death affected us in greater ways that we could've anticipated. After all, it was thanks to her that we even managed to get there in the first place. And what's more, she'd gone out of her way to do this for us, risking her job and eventually her life. We all carried a horrible feeling of guilt our shoulders, but we couldn't let it bother us for any length of time; finding Ash was our top priority and we couldn't allow anything to distract us. We could mourn for Lucy later.

    I could tell that Misty and Dawn still doubted me; they occasionally glanced at me nervously as if I was a ticking time bomb that would go off at any moment. Maybe I was ... In fact, we all were, little did we know, but I'll get to that later.

    I wasn't about to give up. I knew what I was talking about, and I still don't know how I was so certain. I wish I could've said the same thing about where we were going...

    We had no choice but to try and put Lucy out of our minds for the time being and to press on. It was easier said than done; the fog was ridiculously thick and every street looked almost exactly the same. Thank god we found those maps, that's all I can say ... But despite Lucy's story, we just hadn't predicted just how hostile and dangerous that place had become. We had yet to come across any mutated Pokémon, and at the time that was our greatest worry.

    We just hadn't met Kradd yet...

    * * * * *

    "Hey, Brock, do you actually know where we're going?"

    The question came from a very irritable Misty as she and Dawn followed Brock through the deserted, fog-drenched streets. It had been roughly half an hour since they had entered and they were getting nowhere; no matter where they turned, every single one of the streets looked identical. Thanks to the mist, they could only see a few metres in front of them at any given time.

    Brock led the small group, trudging forward with an increasing limp; his leg was beginning to bother him again. He flinched slightly at his friend's sudden question, since he'd been keeping his ears open and eyes peeled for anything other than them that was moving.

    After a moment, he answered her: "No, I don't, but bear with me."

    He heard Misty huff behind him. "So ... you drag us both in here without even knowing where you're going?"

    "I think what Misty's trying to say is ... if you knew that Ash was in here, shouldn't you know where he is?" Dawn cautiously queried.

    Brock actually stopped and considered her question for a moment. While that incomparable feeling that Ash was definitely here hadn't left his mind, he had no idea exactly where. And what's more, they wouldn't get very far if they kept going as they were. The incredible silence was starting to get to them.

    He sighed and turned round to face them both. "OK, I'll admit that I haven't got a clue where Ash is. What I think we should do is look inside a few of the buildings to see if we can find anything to help us."

    "Lucy said that this place used to be a tourist attraction," said Dawn. "I bet that we can find a map somewhere."

    "Exactly. There must be an information booth around here or something."

    "I hope it's close by," Misty said, shivering. "It's so damn cold..."

    "Come on, let's have a look."

    Pikachu and Piplup nodded in agreement. The two Pokémon hadn't shown any bizarre patterns of behaviour as of yet, but all three of them were making sure to keep a close eye on them both.

    They set off again down the deserted road, examining buildings, peeking into windows. They passed abandoned cars, a baby's pram, an old boot ... Fragments of a town that used to be alive. It saddened them to see such things.

    Dawn noticed that Brock had a slight limp and asked him if he was alright.

    "Yeah," he replied. "Hopefully I can rest it soon; it's starting to hurt. How's your arm?"

    "It's OK ... Hurts a little. I hope that we can—"

    It happened so quickly that they all failed to notice that they were all experiencing it at once. Their heads felt as if a huge, invisible hand had grasped them and was starting to squeeze tighter and tighter. They all groaned in unison and clutched their heads, their knees buckling. Pikachu and Piplup wandered between them nervously, tapping them, calling them.

    As Brock fell to his knees, he had to force his lips together to stop himself from screaming as his injured leg received both his full weight and a few sharp stones. But he quickly forgot about all that as the squeezing sensation on his head intensified. The hand had moved; now it was inside his mind; reaching, probing, searching.

    Misty fell onto her side and moaned in pain while Dawn just managed to stay upright, both of them clearly in the same amount of discomfort as each other. The Pokémon were beside themselves with worry as they could do nothing but watch in anticipation.

    Then, just as quickly as it had begun, it was all over.

    None of them moved for several moments in case it came back, but it didn't. Their heads felt completely normal again, untouched. Misty was the first to get to her feet as Pikachu hugged her ankle in relief.

    "OK ... what was that?"

    "That was horrible," said Dawn, also getting up and nearly tripping over a thoroughly relieved Piplup. "You guys felt it too?"

    Misty noticed that Brock was struggling to stand and helped him up.

    "I've ... no idea what that was," he said, still holding his head. "Let's hope that ... it was nothing," he said uncertainly.

    "But if we all felt it at the same time—"

    "None of the Pokémon felt it."

    "It felt as if something was probing my mind, searching through it." Misty whirled around on the spot in panic. "Oh god, something's here. Something's watching us."

    "I don't like this," said Dawn, taking Piplup in her good arm. "Come on, let's find somewhere to go. Maybe we can find what we're looking for." She glanced around, squinting through the fog, before pointing towards a sign beside a door. "Look."

    They all staggered forward, still slightly dazed from their mental ordeal. Surely enough, the sign read 'Tourist Information' with a big blue arrow beneath it, pointing to the door.

    "Thank god for that," Misty sighed, heading straight inside. The others followed.

    It was pitch black inside, so they took out their torches and turned them on. They were in a fairly large room with a circular counter in the middle. Covering the walls were stacks of shelves containing magazines, newspapers, sweets and souvenirs.

    "Alright," said Brock, "have a good look around and take anything that might be useful."

    "It's a shame we can't take any of the food," said Misty, heading around the left-hand side of the counter. "What if we get hungry?"

    "For now, let's just see if we can find a map or something."

    Dawn wandered over to the newspaper shelf and examined the front covers. She picked up one dated 23rd January 1972 and held her torch onto the headlines. 'CHURCH MASSARCE STUNS OFFICIALS' and 'LATEST NEWS ON 'FLU' EPIDEMIC – page 5' were among them. Out of curiosity, she turned to page five to read about the virus when another smaller headline on page six caught her attention: 'GIRL, 8, DISAPPEARS FROM HOME'.

    "Hey you two," she said, "come and look at this."

    Brock and Misty abandoned what they were looking at and came over. Dawn raised the newspaper and Brock shined his torch onto it.

    Just below the headline, there was a small, black and white headshot of a little girl with wide, innocent eyes, a large bow in her hair and a huge, delighted smile on her face.

    "That's odd," said Misty. "Lucy never mentioned a missing child."

    "Probably because they were too busy dealing with the murders to worry about things like that," Brock pointed out sadly.

    "That's true."

    Dawn lowered the newspaper again and began to read:

    "Scarlet Taylor, 8, was last seen leaving Lando's Sweet Shop on 14th January. She has black hair, blue eyes and 'a playful, optimistic nature' according to her parents. She was wearing a red, checked dress. A reward is being offered for her retrieval. Please contact the police if you have any information."

    "How terrible," said Misty. "I wonder if they ever found her?"

    "I doubt it," said Brock ruefully. "Anyway, come on, let's keep looking."

    They continued their search, looking in drawers, cupboards, every nook and cranny they could find. Brock wandered over to the circular counter in the middle, while Misty helped Dawn to empty one of the drawers.

    "Just a map," said Dawn, tossing aside a blank notepad. "That's all we need. Let's just get that; no point in staying here for much longer, right Brock?" He did not answer her. "Brock?"

    He was standing by the counter, leaning forward, looking over at the other side. His face was ghostly pale as he stared in shock at something on the floor.

    "Er ... you two stay o-over there," he said, swallowing. "Don't look."

    Of course, once he said that, the two girls couldn't hold back their curiosity. Before they knew it, they were up on their feet and heading towards where Brock was standing, despite his protests. Pikachu and Piplup followed them, just as interested. They reached the desk and peered over the side. What they saw made them retch.

    The fresh corpse of a woman.

    "Oh my god," Misty gasped, covering her mouth and backing away.

    Dawn stayed where she was, but her face had gone whiter than the fog outside. She narrowed her eyes and stared at the dead woman, examining her bloodied body.

    "...That's so weird," she eventually said. "Hasn't she been dead for forty years?"

    Misty turned round, still holding her mouth, and she along with Brock stared at Dawn, a grim realisation spreading across their faces; a truth that they would've rather not found out about.

    "That's ... true," Brock finally said, not taking his eyes off the woman. "Then again, it could be something to do with the cold."

    "But it's not as cold in here as it was outside."

    While it was true that she wasn't in a good state at all, her body was showing no signs of decay whatsoever. She lay scrunched up on her side in the small circle. Her eyes were wide open in permanent shock, and she had a big hole in her stomach that was still leaking blood onto the wooden floor.

    "The only other explanation," Dawn said, "is that she died recently. In other words, she was ... like us. She came in here to look for something ... or just out of interest ... and then was killed."

    "OK, now I'm really spooked," Misty said, beginning to pace the floor. "If what you're saying is true, then whatever killed her may still be here. Can we just find this god damn map and get out?!"

    Brock had climbed over the counter, being careful not to tread on the woman.

    "Aha!"

    In a small pile on the counter were some printed leaflets. Brock picked one up and unfolded it and, hey-presto, there was a large, detailed tourist map inside of it.

    "Found it!"

    "Good, good, good, now let's get out—"

    "Wait; let's get two in case we lose one." He picked another one up and gave it to Dawn, who safely placed it inside her bag. "OK, let's go."

    Misty didn't need to be told twice; she was out of the door before Brock had even climbed back over the counter. He and Dawn took one last sad look at the woman before following her.

    Once outside, they were greeted by the usual deafening silence, bitter cold and incomprehensible fog. Brock unfolded his map and held it before him. Misty and Dawn stood on either side of him, staring at it, dumbfounded.

    "You can actually read that thing?" asked Misty, squinting at it.

    "I'll try..."

    After a long pause (in which Misty started to jump up and down in a bid to keep warm) and a good deal of head scratching, Brock finally said, "If I'm not mistaken, we're not far from the lake. We're still on the eastern side of town. There's a Pokémon Centre not too far from here, so at least we know where to go if we need any supplies."

    "I wonder where Ash could be..."

    "If he's even here at all," Misty muttered under her breath as she absently shuffled away from them towards a nearby alleyway. "Does that map point out any shortcuts, Brock?" she asked.

    "No. Just main roads."

    "Well that's just—AAARGH!"

    Misty shrieked in terror and scrambled backwards, away from a nearby dustbin, covering her mouth and retching.

    "Oh my – urp – god ... not another one..." she mumbled, leaning against a wall.

    Although they knew very well what Misty had seen, Brock and Dawn folded the map away and followed her. They moved nearer to the blood-splattered dustbin, holding their breaths (not only because of nerves, but also because there was a sickening smell wafting towards them). Brock was first to peer round it.

    There was another corpse, but it was in a much worse state than the last one. Although it wasn't decaying, it looked half-eaten; its bare torso was almost stripped completely of flesh and half of its face was missing. The ground beneath it was sodden with blood and mushy remains of internal organs.

    While Brock struggled to keep his stomach contents down, Dawn, upon seeing the body, staggered over to another dustbin nearby and threw up. Misty simply stayed flat against the wall, doing everything in her will to divert her gaze.

    "This place is sick ... What are we – urp – doing here? We should never have come..."

    CLANG!

    The sudden, sharp noise cut the silence like a knife; all three of them almost left the ground in fright and turned towards its source; deeper into the alleyway. Dawn, who had finished throwing up, whimpered and moved closer to Misty; Brock simply stood up straight and stared straight ahead into the gloom, scanning it carefully for any signs of movement.

    Pikachu suddenly hopped off of Brock's shoulder and faced the darkness, crouching, growling and emitting sparks. Piplup stood next to him, his beak beginning to glow.

    "They're sensing something..."

    "Oh no ... What if it's those horrible monsters?" Dawn trembled.

    "But they're acting aggressively," said Brock. "On the bus, they were terrified."

    "But if it's not the monsters, then what is it?"

    There was another noise now; a high-pitched, scraping noise, like claws tearing at metal.

    Pikachu charged forward a few feet and then came to an abrupt stop, growling, his back arched, his fur crackling with electricity.

    "Something's there..." Misty whispered. "Come on, let's get out of—"

    "MOVE!"

    No sooner had Brock shouted that, a piece of scrap metal had spun through the air, missing their necks by inches. All three of them quickly ducked to avoid being decapitated as the scrap metal zoomed past them and landed with a clatter nearby.

    They stayed on the ground for several moments afterwards in case another one was thrown, but there was nothing; nothing except for an unearthly, harsh, hoarse breathing moving towards them. A figure appeared, nothing but a shadow in the fog, but it had a slightly hunched-over posture and a limp on its left leg.

    "Is that ... a Pokémon?" Dawn whispered.

    It was, but at first they did not recognise it. Although its features told them exactly what Pokémon it was, they had become monstrous. They all gasped in horror as it lumbered through the fog and came into their full view.

    It was an Ambipom, but it looked as if it had just stepped out of the gates of Hell. Instead of the usual purple, its fur was black and matted with blood. Both of its eyes had been gouged out, leaving nothing but hollow, black holes leaking a thick, dark liquid. Its usual grin was still there, but it displayed a number of sharp fangs. Its back was hunched over, halving its height and jutting out its backbone.

    The Pokémon then lifted its two tails, displaying the large, balloon-like 'hands' on the end of them. On the end of each of the three fingers were wicked hooked claws stained with blood. The 'hand' on the left-hand tail had an enormous, red eye on its palm, blinking and examining the three terrified trainers with a sharp, foreboding leer. The 'hand' on the other tail did not have an eye on the palm, but a huge mouth lined with several layers of jagged, razor-sharp teeth, smacking its lips and snarling at them.

    Pikachu backed away from the Ambipom slightly, clearly just as scared as the humans were. But he glared at the mutated Pokémon before him, growling, his brisling fur at its highest voltage. Piplup looked almost tempted to flee, but he stood his ground next to Pikachu, his little beak glowing, ready to attack if the Ambipom got any closer.

    The three trainers all got to their feet, never taking their eyes off the horrid monster before them. While Dawn and Misty were staring at the enormous set of jaws on the right 'hand', Brock hadn't stopped gazing into the red eye ever since he first saw it.

    I've seen that before...

    "OK ... what do you guys suggest?" Dawn whimpered, beginning to back away as the Ambipom let out a low growl and began to approach. "Do we attack, or..."

    I have seen it! In that vision!

    A chorus of hoarse cries echoed over the rooftops. Dark shadows leapt over them across the gaps between the buildings on either side of them.

    "There're more of them..." Misty whispered, beginning to tremble.

    The Ambipom in front of them chuckled, the jaw on its 'hand' drooling in anticipation. As the chattering cries reverberated around them, it began to creep closer.

    Pikachu didn't wait for a command; he tensed himself and released a powerful Thunderbolt straight at it. The Ambipom stopped and shuddered as the attack hit, but once it was over, it merely shook it off and continued forward.

    Pikachu's attack snapped Dawn out of a mini-trance. "Piplup, use Bubblebeam!"

    Her Pokémon immediately did as he was told, unleashing a torrent of large bubbles from his mouth. The Ambipom was ready this time, however; it brought both of its tails round to its front and blocked the attack with his 'hands'. It chuckled, mocking their unsuccessful efforts, and continued to advance.

    Black things were crawling down the walls on either side of them, one tail clinging onto the wall, the other leering at them with the sharp eye on the palm. They laughed and chattered to each other, plotting their assault.

    Pikachu's ears twitched and he turned urgently to Brock (who was still transfixed by the eye) and began to push his legs, trying to get him to move. "Pikaaaa! Pikachu!"

    "I think that's your cue to move!" Misty snapped, grabbing him by the shoulders, spinning him round and pushing him. "Stop staring and run!"

    Now that his gaze was away from the eye, Brock came back to his senses. The menacing chatters and s******s and claws-on-concrete noises somehow fuelled him. He grabbed Pikachu up off the ground (while Dawn scooped up Piplup), shouted, "Run!" and began to do just that.
    My fanfiction, 'Pokemon Nightmare' can also be found on there.

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  21. #21
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    Great chapter. Undead Ambipom(s) = creepy! Really, Ambipom's scary enough even when it's in a normal state...
    Now that his gaze was away from the eye, Brock came back to his senses. The menacing chatters and s******s and claws-on-concrete noises somehow fuelled him. He grabbed Pikachu up off the ground (while Dawn scooped up Piplup), shouted, "Run!" and began to do just that.
    The parentheses probably weren't necessary here. Maybe the phrase would be better written in a separate sentence.

    Anyway, great cliffhanger at the end. It's amazing that the Pokemon attacking the ambipom had essentially no effect on it whatsoever...wow.

    Great job!
    I will be offline from January 2013 to October 2014.

    Greetings from the asylum of my insanity.
    Chapter 3 and cooler banner coming eventually. :P

    Dex: 128 created! ~ DA and LJ links coming later.

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    Sorry about the wait, I've had writer's block, but here is chapter 8. Enjoy, and please comment!

    CHAPTER EIGHT

    None of them uttered even a sound as they tore themselves out of the alleyway and took a sharp turn to the left; the last thing they needed was to attract yet more unwanted attention. The menacing chatters and laughs and snarls got closer and closer with every step. They had no idea just how many Ambipom were chasing them, but their only priority was to get away before those huge jaws tore into them.

    Normally, Brock would've led the group, but his limp was slowing him down considerably. Misty noticed that he was falling behind and briefly stopped, grabbed his hand and pulled him forward. Dawn took it upon herself to lead them, despite the fact that she had absolutely no idea where they were going; the fog was so thick now that they could barely see their own hands in front of their faces as they felt their way through the mist, being careful not to crash into a wall or trip over a body...

    Yes, there were lots of them littering the streets, some half-eaten, some completely untouched, almost frozen solid in the cold. Some even had limbs missing. But the group desperately tried to divert their eyes away from the gruesome sights as they ran for their lives.

    Eventually, Misty got the courage to glance behind her. She immediately screamed and quickened her pace, dragging Brock along behind her.

    Five Ambipom were chasing them, clinging to the sides of the buildings and leaping along the rooftops above. The one that they had met in the alleyway was on the ground a short distance behind them, the eye on its tail widened and the mouth drooling and licking its lips in anticipation.

    All the while that they were running, Pikachu did not stop squirming in Brock's grasp. He wriggled and protested so much that Brock was having trouble holding onto him. He noticed that Piplup was behaving in a similar manner in Dawn's arm.

    "Ouch!"
    A sharp twinge in Brock's arm made him release Pikachu, who had delivered a weak electric shock to it in one last bid to get free. It worked. While Brock reflexively rubbed his arm, Pikachu dropped to the ground, growled, and unleashed a powerful Thunderbolt at the ground-based Ambipom. But once again, the mutated Pokémon merely shuddered as the attack hit, quickly recovering and advancing upon Pikachu menacingly.

    The others had stopped when Pikachu had attacked, and Piplup had managed to get free as well. He waddled unsteadily towards Pikachu, ready to help his friend at all costs.

    "They want to battle them," Brock said, watching in horror as the four other Ambipom crawled down the sides of the buildings, cackling in pure joy.

    "But what's the point? They can't be harmed by Pokémon attacks!" cried Misty, but at the same time she placed her hand inside of her bag and pulled out a Poké Ball.

    "We might be able to defeat them if we try," said Dawn. "We can't run forever. They'll catch up eventually."

    They all knew that she was right; they knew that they would eventually become too weary to run any further and that the Ambipom would resume in ripping them apart. They had to at least try...

    All five of them had now surrounded the group, smacking their lips hungrily, their red eyes narrowed, seizing up their weak spots. One of them grabbed the lid of a dustbin and hurled it at them with alarming strength and speed, but it was intercepted by a Bubblebeam from Piplup and knocked away. It landed some feet away with a loud clang.

    A flash of bright light startled them, and they turned to find out that Misty had released a Vaporeon. The Pokémon saw the half-crippled, blood-thirsty and cackling monsters approaching and backed away, whimpering. But with an urgent word of encouragement from Misty and the acknowledgement that he was not alone in the fight, he gave a cry of rage and charged forward, joining Pikachu and Piplup.

    Brock decided not to release a Pokémon unless he really needed too, since he had no idea how this was going to turn out, and he didn't want anyone to unnecessarily get hurt. If he did have to release one, Croagunk was his top choice.

    The Ambipom were getting ever closer, snapping their jaws in aggression. It was now or never.

    "Piplup," Dawn cried, "use Whirlpool!"

    Without hesitation, the little Pokémon raised his head and took a long, deep breath, filling his lungs. As his chest expanded, his body began to glow a blue-white colour and as he exhaled, a huge, swirling whirlpool formed above his beak. With a cry of effort, Piplup hurled the whirlpool at the nearest Ambipom. It hit, and the monster scrambled to get away but was a moment too late. The whirlpool picked it up, spun it round in rapid circles and eventually hurled it into a wall. It lay for a moment, slightly dazed, but quickly got to its feet, its eye narrowed dangerously.

    The others appeared enraged by their futile attempts to defeat them as well. The deafening sound of claws tearing at metal scraped at their ears once again, and the group was forced to drop to the ground as several razor sharp pieces of scrap metal spun through the air towards them at an alarming speed. Some of them were cut off by attacks from Piplup and Vaporeon, but one of them slashed at Misty's arm as she fell to her knees, leaving a long, thin gash. She hissed in pain, but didn't let her concentration falter.

    "Pikaaaaa!"

    Not even waiting for a command, Pikachu raced towards one of the Ambipom while charging a powerful Volt Tackle. Everything seemed to move in slow motion as the little Pokémon dashed at his target, letting out a cry of rage; driven forward by the urge to find his master.

    However, the Ambipom was ready for him.

    It calmly held out the 'hand' which owned the huge set of jaws and merely stood there, completely still, its grin broadening. The eye on the other hand stared unblinkingly at Pikachu as he rapidly approached; pinpointing the perfect moment...

    The three trainers all guessed what was about to happen at the same time; the way that the jaws were drooling and flicking a forked tongue over their fangs gave them a clue. They all cried out at Pikachu to stop and turn round, but they were a second too late.

    When Pikachu was literally inches away from the Ambipom, the monster lashed its tail forward, quick as a flash, and plucked its attacker up off the ground and held it tightly above its head, laughing madly. Pikachu yelped in surprise as the claws grasped him firmly, digging into him. He let out a Thunderbolt in a desperate bid to get free, but the Ambipom appeared not to notice. Its friends began to cackle and jeer.

    Misty cried out and started a run towards them, but Brock quickly stopped her. None of them noticed Dawn creeping away towards a nearby building, but they did notice that the hand which had grasped Pikachu was the one on which the murderous jaws were located ... and they were pressed right up against Pikachu's fur...

    The little Pokémon screamed in terror and unleashed several Thunderbolts in a row, but the Ambipom hardly even flinched this time; it was too focused upon Pikachu to even pay attention to the shouts of encouragement from its friends.

    EAT IT EAT IT EAT IT

    Piplup shot a Bubblebeam at it, but again it was almost unnoticed. A tiny trickle of blood drizzled down Pikachu's side as he wriggled and squirmed and cried out in pain, trying hopelessly to get free. Misty commanded her Vaporeon to attack, but once again it was no use. Brock even considered making a move towards the Ambipom, but the way in which its companions were leering a warning at him made him stay away. The more he stared into that red eye, the greater that bizarre fear became.

    "Pikaaaaaa!"

    CLANG!

    It all happened in a second. The Ambipom's head was wacked with such a force that it tilted at a strange angle to the side. Without even uttering a grunt, the monster fell face down onto the ground and fell limp. Pikachu managed to prise the claws open and free himself. He ran straight over to Brock and jumped into his arms. The fur on his back was lightly stained with blood, but other than that he looked relatively unharmed, but in shock.

    The rest of the Ambipom screamed in some sort of enraged horror and backed away slightly. Misty and Brock stared at the fallen Pokemon for some time, terrified that it was just playing dead and would jump up again and attack them at any moment. But the horribly deformed neck told them otherwise. Eventually they looked upwards and gasped.

    Dawn stood over the dead Ambipom, breathing deeply and rapidly, staring down at it with blazing hatred in her eyes. Clutched in her good hand was a long metal pipe.

    "Oh my god..." Misty whispered.

    Dawn hadn't finished yet; she saw the Ambipom's foot twitch insignificantly and raised the pipe again. In one swift movement she brought it down on the monster's twisted corpse. Then again. And again. She continued to beat its body with increasing velocity and rage, letting out shrill grunts of effort. Her strength was alarming considering the fact that she could only use one arm.

    Brock couldn't hold himself back any longer. "Dawn, stop!" he cried, limping towards her. He took care to stay well away from the pipe as it continued to beat the last traces of life out of the Ambipom. He went to Dawn's side and grabbed her, spinning her round to face him. "Stop it, Dawn. It's already dead."

    She stared at him in bewilderment, her eyes full of wrath and fear. A loud clang to their left indicated that she had dropped the pipe. Her legs buckled as she fell to her knees, Brock supporting her. She blinked a few times, as if just waking up, and glanced down at the badly beaten Ambipom before her. She gasped.

    "Oh my ... What have – Why did I—"

    A loud screech of rage told them that now wasn't the time for a conversation. The remaining four Ambipom looked just about ready to commit murder.

    "We can't stay," Brock cried, hauling Dawn to her feet. "Come on, let's move!"

    None of them hesitated. Misty, being the only one without an injury of some sort, picked up the pipe that Dawn was using in both hands and proceeded to bolt straight towards the nearest building. Of course, the enraged Ambipom gave chase, but made sure to keep a good distance from Misty, as she brandished the pipe at them if they got too close. Since Dawn could barely get her own legs to work, Brock had no choice but to try and drag her along despite his own injury. Pikachu, Piplup and Vaporeon followed suit, using attacks such as Thunderbolt and Hydro Pump to keep the monsters away.

    "In here!"

    Misty ran headlong into the door of a building and began to twist the handle. Nothing happened. She screamed and kicked the door but it still wouldn't budge. The three Pokémon were doing their utmost best to keep their foes at bay, but they were beginning to get weary. They couldn't keep it up for much longer...

    Brock eventually caught up to her with Dawn stumbling along behind him.

    "It won't open!" Misty cried, slamming her fist into the door.

    "On three!" Brock shouted, letting go of Dawn's wrist. "One, two, three!"

    He and Misty both rammed into the door at once, finally bringing it off its hinges. Without a moment to waste, they entered. Their Pokémon quickly followed suit, with Pikachu firing one last Thunderbolt at an Ambipom before following. The monsters screeched in fury and charged at the door, but they managed to close it just in time.

    While Dawn sagged against a wall, Misty and Brock gathered anything they could find to stack up against the door. By the time they had finished, a mountain of chairs blocked the Ambipom's entrance ... and their exit. They could hear them screaming outside, banging furiously at the door.

    "Come on," Misty said, "let's get away from here."

    Brock quickly took out his torch and shone it ahead of them. They were in a long hallway with several doors on either side of them. A single light bulb hung from the ceiling, gently swaying from side to side. The three trainers and their Pokémon headed straight to the nearest door; the first one on the left.

    Only to be greeted by a dead man sitting in a chair facing the door with his face torn off.

    Brock was the first to enter. He quickly backed out and closed the door before the girls could see what was behind it.

    "Nuh-Nothing in there," he said, swallowing. "Come on."

    Misty glanced at the door inquisitively, but then thought better of it and continued to follow. Unbeknownst to Brock, she was glaring at him furiously. Dawn simply tagged along behind them both, her eyes wide, her face expressionless.

    Thankfully, the next room was devoid of anything that was dead. An empty armchair sat near to the wall facing an old TV. A tall bookshelf covered most of the left-hand side wall, and a few of its book were scattered on the floor. A painting hung unevenly on the wall, showing a man nailed to a Cross. But some of the paint had been peeled off, leaving the man's face unidentifiable...

    Dawn wandered aimlessly over to the chair and slowly sat down, staring at one of the books on the floor while Brock and Misty secured the door with a few wooden chairs.

    "There," Brock said, "we should be safe in here for the time being."

    None of the girls answered him. Misty absent-mindedly pulled out a Poké Ball and called back her Vaporeon. Pikachu gasped in relief and sat down next to the chair next to Dawn's feet. The girl was trembling violently; even when Piplup called her and cuddled her ankle, she did not respond.

    "I ... I killed a Pokémon..."

    Brock and Misty stared at her. Pikachu flinched and muttered to himself. Piplup let go of her ankle.

    Now Brock understood why she had been almost catatonic ever since they'd arrived there. The very thought that human beings had every bit of potential for killing a Pokémon had never occurred to him until now. Likewise, he realised, they were perfectly capable of killing them, their masters. He wondered if it had ever happened before ... and couldn't bear to think of the guilt that Dawn must've been feeling at that moment. After all, she had an Ambipom of her own...

    "I killed it ... it was a Pokémon and I killed it..."

    "Dawn..."

    Brock really didn't know what to say to her. He walked over to the chair and placed his hand on her shoulder. Then he thought of something.

    "Dawn ... I don't even think that they were Pokémon anymore," he said.

    Dawn nodded slowly. "But ... I don't understand ... Why did I do that? I don't ... I don't know what came over me. I suddenly felt so ... angry. I wasn't scared anymore. I wanted to hurt it..."

    "So you got mad and tried to defend both yourself and us. That's no big deal."
    "But ... I didn't feel like myself..."

    "Just ... Just try to forget about it." Brock squeezed her shoulder. "By the way that the Ambipom looked, I'd say that you put it out of its misery."

    Dawn nodded again, her face expressionless. She bent down and scooped Piplup up off the ground and cuddled him.

    Feeling that his work was done for now, Brock approached the centre of the room. Misty faced the wall and hadn't spoken to either of them since they arrived there. He left her to ponder her thoughts for the moment though.

    "...OK," he said. "We need to try and find another way out of here, since I'm sure that the Ambipom will be waiting at the door and—"

    "This is all your fault," Misty said coldly, not turning round.

    Brock blinked and looked at her. "Excuse me?"

    She turned round. Her face was bright red and she was shaking with rage, her eyes blazing.

    "You. You are the one who led us into this hellhole. You are the one who 'just knew' that Ash was here—"

    "Now wait a minute—"

    "—and now we're stuck here, with a horde of Pokémon outside who want to tear us apart—"

    "—I didn't ask you to come—"

    "—limb from limb! Well, maybe I'm just as stupid as you are, coming with you. I would never have done so if I knew that you were going to lead us straight into a death-trap!"

    "Don't call me stupid," Brock said, glaring at her.

    Dawn glanced between the two of them nervously. "Guys, don't—"

    "I'll call you whatever the hell I want!" Misty screeched. "Why can't you just wake up and accept reality? Ash died in that crash!"

    The room went completely silent. Dawn let out a soft sob while Misty and Brock continued to glower at each other. Misty eventually lowered her head and sniffed.

    "Face it ... He didn't make it out alive. He isn't here."

    While a part of him wanted to comfort Misty, another foreign part of him wanted to punch her in the face. His fist clenched.

    "He ... is ... here," he said through gritted teeth. "Don't tell me otherwise! I'm sick of people contradicting me! Why won't you believe me?"

    Misty shook her head in disbelief. "You're mad."

    Brock went to raise his fist, but quickly forced it to stop. Hitting his own friend ... he refused to sink that low.

    Go on. I dare you. Hit the b*itch.

    No!

    Brock shook his head and clutched it.

    What the hell—

    Punch her lights out.

    No!

    You know you want to.

    NO!

    He involuntarily staggered backwards, hitting the bookcase, still holding his head. A book fell from it and landed on the wooden floor with a loud thump.

    Misty simply stood and watched him with an emotionless face. "The truth hurts, doesn't it?"

    "It's not that. I ... heard something."

    "You're mad!" Misty shrieked. "Mad, mad, mad!"

    Hit her.

    He made a move towards her before he could stop himself. Luckily, Dawn had recovered enough to step between them boldly.

    "Stop it," she said, her voice trembling, "both of you. This isn't helping one bit. We still need to find out if Ash is here or not—"

    Misty looked as if she was about to explode. "HE'S – NOT – HERE!"

    "YES HE IS!"

    "Shut up!" Dawn shouted, placing her hand on Brock's chest to stop him from advancing any further. She suddenly broke down into tears. "I don't ... I don't know what do to, or who to believe. For now ... For now we just try to get out of here as soon as we can. If you two start fighting, then it's going to get a whole lot harder. We have to try and stick together." She sniffed and wiped away a tear. "Alright?"

    Brock and Misty both scowled at each other before sighing and nodding.

    "Good..." Dawn looked as if she had just stopped a bullfight. "Calm down and ... and let's see if we can find a way out."

    No one said a word as they gathered their belongings. The atmosphere was just as
    cold as the weather was outside. Brock tried to calm himself down, but it was no use. He almost hated Misty for speaking to him like that ... for not believing him ... how dare she ... the b*itch would pay...

    What? No!

    He shook his head as he hauled his bag onto his shoulder.

    Maybe he was going mad after all.

    All three of them headed towards the door, not looking, not speaking to each other. Both Brock and Misty knew that Dawn was right, and that arguing in a place like this was one of the stupidest things you could do. Yet they felt like they hadn't finished yet.

    Don't worry. You can get the b*tch later.

    A blood-curdling scream from upstairs halted their thoughts and movements.
    Last edited by Ocean Soul; 26th March 2011 at 4:20 PM.
    My fanfiction, 'Pokemon Nightmare' can also be found on there.

    Team White


  23. #23
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    This is awesome! Keep going, man!

    "If beer and women aren't the answer, then you're asking the wrong questions." -Anonymous

  24. #24
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    Awwwh, no more? ): I love this, but then again I'm a sucker for horror story. Keep up the great work!

    Pokémon white! :3

  25. #25
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    Great chapter. Misty and Brock's growing conflict was intense, and now he's hearing a voice whispering in his mind? Wow! I wonder if the monsters were behind Misty's anger as well...

    I couldn't find any spelling/grammatical errors, so good job with that! I was rather worried about Pikachu when he was being attacked by that Ambipom...luckily Dawn saved him!
    I will be offline from January 2013 to October 2014.

    Greetings from the asylum of my insanity.
    Chapter 3 and cooler banner coming eventually. :P

    Dex: 128 created! ~ DA and LJ links coming later.

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