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Thread: Chronicles of Unova (PG-15)

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    Chronicles of Unova

    Chapter 13: Pooh's Paula's Grande Adventure!
    Part 2 of 2

    Mt. Moon cast its shadow on the rocky terrain surrounding it in the early afternoon sun. Summer was just beginning in the Kanto region and many young, aspiring trainers from nearby Pewter City played in the foothills during their break from school. Many wild Pokémon came out of their homes to frolic with the children, chasing each other and rolling in the tall grass; two in particular seemed especially cheerful however, running and enjoying the warm summer sun.

    “Theese-ah way, Christian!” Gloria shouted, leading her love through the rocky meadow. Christian tagged along behind, trying to keep pace with the speeding girl; he struggled to keep up with her bubbling excitement though and panted heavily.

    “What-ah are you trying to show me, Gloria?” he wheezed, catching up. Gloria just giggled and motioned for him to keep going. She ran behind a rock and out of sight. Christian sighed and ran after her, running up to a big tree and instantly seeing what she had wanted him to see.

    “Isn’t it-ah beautiful, Christian?” she said excitedly. “The Jigglypuff made it for us.” she continued. Nestled below the tree was a wreath of pink flowers, shaped like a simple, crude heart. Much like what humans sometimes did, the letters “C + G” were spelled out in the middle, simply and humbly marking their love. Christian smiled and moved in close to his partner in affection.

    “It is, mio amore, just like-ah the woo-man it was made for.” he replied. Gloria smiled and nuzzled her small face against his.

    “Christian? Will we be-ah like this forever?” she whispered after a moment’s pause. Christian nodded and continued to stand close to her. The simple, flawless moment seemed to last indefinitely.

    Here! These two’ll do.” a gruff voice said from behind them. They turned in shock at the interruption and saw two foreboding men drawing close to them. The one who had spoken reached out and grabbed Christian, shielded from his poisonous barbs by thick black gloves.

    Gloria!!” he shouted after her, but his fear of losing her was short lived. The other man bent down and scooped her up too, following his partner down the hill and back into the valley.

    “The boss has been wanting a Nidoking and Nidoqueen for a long time. This’ll get us promoted for sure.” the man holding Gloria commented. His partner chuckled and they continued on their way. The pair of Nidoran tried to struggle free, but without their poison to help them, they were too weak to break the grips that bound them. They watched in terror as their home at the base of the mountain slipped away…

    * * *

    “After-ah that, we were put on many boats and shipped all around the world.” Christian continued. “We have not seen-ah our home in many months. The only theeng keeping us going is each other…” he finished, trailing off. Gloria timidly spoke up to continue his statement, but she spoke softly and fearfully.

    “We-ah do not know why we were keed-napped, but we have overheard ah-the guards talking since we came into theese port. We believe theese to be our final destination.” she mused. “The man who wanted us must-ah be here somewhere.” she continued. Paula was beside herself with sadness at their terrible story, her eyes welling up with tears.

    “You poor children.” she said thoughtfully, falling to her knees and embracing them. “You are so young and pure… the hardships you have endured together…” she mused; she looked out the window at the shore and nodded her head in determination. “We are going to get you out of here. That’s a promise.” she said, turning back to them. A grin spread across her face as she said this, turning to the other Pokémon for support.

    “Absolutely.” Gus chimed up unequivocally.

    “Beyond a shadow of a doubt.” Umbreon mimicked.

    Christian and Gloria stared at the fellow Pokémon in shock as the concept of freedom dawned on them. They looked at each other in confusion, but slowly started to smile. They nuzzled their noses together affectionately again and began to grin.

    “Sank you, my friends; grazie mille.” Christian murmured, overcome by the emotion of the situation. Gloria began to softly weep again, but this time tears of joy instead of sorrow. The sight touched the hearts of everyone who saw it… all except for Munchlax.

    Munchlax cleared his throat to get as much attention as he could. The Pokémon turned to look at him and, after a moment to prepare, he bellowed “Gaaaaaaay.” as disinterestedly as he could. Paula flushed red and snapped at him.

    “Munchlax, you heartless cretin, have you no shame?” she said in disgust. Munchlax simply waved her off, but she strode up and grabbed at his neck.

    “Now listen here, you; I have tried to be polite, but now I see that diplomacy will have no effect on your simple mind. As unladylike as it may be, I can see that the only thing to sway you now is a threat.” she started to say. “Unless you want to spend the rest of your life on this ship, then we are getting off of it eventually one way or another. When we do, if you do not help us, then I will tell Master David about your little charade, and he will punish you however he sees fit. In fact, he might even… cut back on your food.” she continued ominously. Munchlax gasped at the thought, but after a moment, a mischievous grin spread across his face.

    “Actually…” he started to say, pondering something. “…that’s all the incentive I need.” A confused look spread across Paula’s face as she released him, surprised at his sudden willingness to behave.

    “It is?” she asked. “How do you figure?” she continued.

    “David told you to watch out for me and keep me out of trouble. If he found out what I’ve been up to, you would get in trouble too! That’s all the incentive I need to want to head back.” he replied, rubbing his hands together devilishly. Paula started to protest, but Golbat cut her off.

    “Maybe it’s just my Inner Focus talking, but don’t you think we should make some kind of plan?” he asked. “The deck is swarming with guards. How are we going to get past them?” Before anyone else could speak up though, Umbreon chimed in with an answer.

    “Don’t worry about that, Golbat.” he said ominously. “Just leave everything to me…”

    * * *

    “Umbreon, are you certain about this?” Paula whispered nervously. “I do not think this is going to work…” she stammered, but Umbreon grinned and nodded in reply.

    “Don’t worry about it, babe.” he replied smoothly. “You look great. Just remember to do it like I explained, and don’t forget, once you have their attention and we’ve gotten away, Teleport back to us, okay?” he continued. Paula swallowed audibly but nodded in response, turning away from him and back towards the stairs leading to the upper decks. She sighed to calm herself as Pachirisu nervously walked up.

    “Hey Paula, um…” she started to say. “I, um… I just think you’re really brave for going through with this…” she stammered. “I think it’s pretty cool.” she continued. Paula shot her friend a smile and laid a hand on her shoulder.

    “Thank you, dear. Wish me luck.” she replied quietly. Pachirisu grinned and nodded, stepping back as Paula prepared for her task. Taking one quick look back at Umbreon and the rest of the group, Paula sighed and stepped out onto the upper decks. She walked confidently and commandingly towards the bow and halted in the bright sunlight. She struck up the pose Umbreon had described and waited for the crew to take notice.

    “You hoo! Oh boooooys…” she shouted as seductively as she could, but her voice wavered. She held one hand behind her head and bent the opposite leg up, smiling knowingly like an old-time fashion model. She tried to look and act calm, but her heart was beating out of control and she felt herself break out in a cold sweat. Some of the crew took notice of her and stared in confusion.

    “Is it working?” Gus asked as Umbreon peered around the corner at her display. Umbreon remained silent for a moment, but then started to speak.

    “Err… I don’t know…” he mumbled. “It’s hard to tell. Not much is happening yet, although some of them have spotted her…” he continued. Up at the bow, more and more of the crewmen were taking notice of the peculiar little Kirlia and her strange pose.

    “Could one of you, err… big… um… muscular chaps help a lady in distress?” Paula tried to say nervously. “I seem to have misplaced my… um…” she continued.

    Kirlia kir kirlia, li-kir kirlia, kirlia kirlia ki-ki…” she muttered. The crew was completely oblivious to whatever she was trying to say and continued to stare in awkward confusion.

    “Hey, uh… whose Kirlia is that?” one of them whispered. “I didn’t know any of us had one of those.” he continued.

    “I dunno, mate.” the man next to him replied. “But it looks like it wants to tell us something…” he muttered.

    “Why is it standing like that? Is there something wrong with its leg?” another man asked. The crew continued to mumble amongst themselves in bewildered surprise, trying to determine just what to think of the odd display.

    Paula grinned nervously, gritting her teeth and trying to not show how worried she was. She turned her head over her shoulder and tried to whisper to Umbreon.

    “Umbreoooon! This isn’t workiiiing!” she whispered in a panicked sing-song voice. “Time for plan B please!” she continued. Umbreon nodded and turned around to face Gus and Aerodactyl.

    “Plan B guys. Have at it.” he said calmly. A Cheshire grin spread across Aerodactyl’s fanged mouth as the pair stepped forward to join their comrade.

    “Well I dunno, should we like… try and catch it or something?” one of the crewmen asked. The others nodded in general agreement and the man started walking towards Paula. She shook with nervousness, still trying desperately to maintain the seductive pose and grin.

    “Umbreon, any time nooooow!” she whispered back. “Hurryyyy!” she continued, but Umbreon didn’t reply. Just as the man drew close and reached down to grab her, Paula heard a shout from behind her and the crew looked up in fright.

    BOOGEDY BOOGEDY BOOGEDY BOO!” Gus and Aerodactyl shouted in unison. Umbreon was beside himself with laughter at their ridiculous display as the pair flew at top speed down the hall towards the crew. The terrifying sight of the ghastly, menacing sarcophagus and rampaging, feral dinosaur instantly sent the crew into a panic; they scattered in all directions as the monsters came screeching towards them, throwing the ship into complete chaos.

    Every man for himself!” the man near Paula shouted before jumping the short distance into the water. Guards and crewmen ran everywhere as Aerodactyl and Gus swirled overhead, still screaming and screeching nonsense at the tops of their lungs. Paula bolted back towards the remaining Pokémon to help them off of the ship as Aerodactyl and Gus covered their escape.

    “Come on!” she whispered, motioning for Christian and Gloria to come out onto the deck. The terrified pair was reluctant to move, but joined her and began running for the stern of the boat. The group of Pokémon started to make a break for it, but one of the crewmen spotted them.

    “Hey! Wait! Stop!” he shouted, trying to get anyone else’s attention that he could. “They’re getting away with the boss’ Nidoran!” he bellowed. Ignoring the pretend attack by the flying beasts, he charged towards the fleeing Pokémon, holding his cap with one hand to keep it from flying off. They noticed him charging, but couldn’t react in time to stop him.

    “I’ve got this!” Munchlax shouted. He curled his hand into a fist as it burst into flames, standing rooted in place as the man ran up to him. A grin spread across Munchlax’s face as the man drew near and, using the momentum the man had already built up, threw a powerful punch at the man’s abdomen that sent him flying into the water below. His clothing seared for a brief moment, but was extinguished quickly by the ocean water. Munchlax snickered and ran to catch up with the other Pokémon. The band of escapees reached the edge of the ship and could see the docks just on the other side. Paula looked around to make sure they were all still there before turning to look at Golbat to speak.

    “Once we have gone, go and collect Gus and Aerodactyl. Hurry!” she shouted. Golbat nodded and took to the skies to fly back to the bow of the boat. Paula stretched out an arm and started to focus.

    “Hold on, everyone!” she exclaimed quickly. Pachirisu took her heroine’s hand, with Munchlax taking hers, Umbreon taking his, and Christian and Gloria grabbing Umbreon’s sleek tail. Paula focused on the docks and began to Teleport away. In a flash, the group had left the boat and made it safely to the shore. They ran off into the shadows and left the panicking ship behind.

    “They’re gone, come on!” Golbat screeched as he flew over the command tower. Gus and Aerodactyl acknowledged his statement and made one final pass over the terrified crew before turning back towards the city. They flew away in a rush to rejoin their fleeing friends, escaping safely into the afternoon shadows. Christian and Gloria were free, but still many miles from home.

    * * *

    The docks were eerily quiet after the surprise attack on the docked ship. The escaping Pokémon moved through the shadows to try and avoid detection, jumping from cover to cover carefully. Paula spoke up in a whisper as they neared a safe distance from the ship.

    “Alright friends, we need to find today’s shipping register.” she started. “We must find a boat that is sailing for Kanto. That way, Christian and Gloria may return home.” she continued. They moved stealthily through the docks and eventually reached the Harbormaster’s office. Paula found the shipping register and scanned through it for the relevant information she needed.

    “Let’s see… J-U, J-Y, K-A… no, that’s not it… K-A-B, K-A-L… ah!” she exclaimed. “Here it is, Kanto. Let’s see…” she mumbled. “There is a ship leaving from dock D79 today at 4:45 for Vermilion Harbor. It is just north of here; come friends, let us hurry and catch it!” she continued, setting the book back where she found it. They rushed towards the dock she had specified and stood in the shadows watching it as they arrived. Several of the crewmen from the first boat were guarding it however as crews loaded packages onto the small ship. They would need some degree of stealth to make it onto the second ship undetected.

    “Alright guys, here’s what we’re going to do…” Umbreon started to say as he eyed the strategic points of the area, but Munchlax had had enough.

    “Pardon me, ‘scuse me, coming through.” he said loudly, bumping Umbreon aside. Munchlax strode into the sunlight towards the guards with a frown on his face and began to wag his finger at them.

    “Munchlax, wait! No!” Paula whispered, but it was too late.

    “Now you guys listen here!” Munchlax started to shout. “I’ve been all over this crappy town today trying to get something to eat, and I am tired of this bullshit. I’ve been hit in the back with a streetlight, gotten my ear nagged off by my sister, I’ve been-”

    Munch munch lax lax, munch munchlax! Lax munch lax lax munchlax lax munchlax…” he shouted angrily. A dumbstruck look spread across the guard’s faces as the little tike berated them unintelligibly, completely oblivious to whatever he was saying.

    “–and these stupid Nidoran have an Italian accent for some reason, and I just want something to EAT!” he finished in rage. He flung his arms in fury, staring up at them sternly and expecting them to simply move aside. The guards looked at each other tiredly before drawing their Pokéballs to attack.

    “Oh shit…” Munchlax started to say as he realized what was going on. His friends rushed from cover to assist him before it was too late.

    “Nice going, Munchlax!” Umbreon chastised as he ran up. “Thanks for blowing our cover, jerk.”

    “Shut up and fight!” Aerodactyl screamed viciously as he prepared for battle. The guards released many Rattata and Meowth to fight with, outnumbering the ragtag group 2-to-1. They threw themselves haphazardly at Aerodactyl, but he swatted them down with ease.

    The whistle blew on the boat as the crews raised the anchor. It slowly started to move as it set sail, leaving the dock and the fight behind.

    “Christian! Gloria! We must go now!” Paula shouted. The timid Nidoran watched as the boat began leaving and ran up the long pier after it.

    “Aerodactyl, do you-” Paula started to say, but he cut her off.

    “No! Just go!” he screamed, swatting another Rattata that had lunged at him out of the air. As the other Pokémon covered her escape, Paula ran after the terrified Nidoran as they followed after the boat.

    Christian and Gloria ran as fast as their short legs would carry them. They were starting to catch up to the small ship, but it was gaining speed as it reached the deeper water. Knowing this was their only chance, they ran to the edge of the pier and leapt with all their might. Time seemed to slow as Paula watched the young couple sail through the air. As they fell through their arc, Gloria managed to land on the deck of the boat, but Christian slipped and didn’t make it. He grabbed at the guard rail, flailing desperately to hang on and make it over the other side, but his grasp was slipping.

    “Christian! Hang-ah on!” Gloria shrieked in terror as she tried to climb up to him; she was fighting an uphill battle though, literally, and was losing time. Paula knew she had to step in and intervene or else Christian would fall in and drown; she focused her mind to try and telekinetically give him a little push from afar, but a loud noise broke her concentration before she could help.

    “Fuck yeah! Seaking!” a wild Seaking shouted as it burst from the water. The determined fish leapt from the swells of the boat towards Christian, bumping him with its horn and pushing him the remaining distance onto the boat. As quickly as it had appeared, the Seaking splashed back into the deep blue water, grinning determinedly to itself with a mischievous look in its eye. Paula stared blankly at the display as this happened, simply relieved that Christian was safe.

    “Challenge accepted…” she murmured quietly to herself. Christian righted himself as Gloria ran up, squealing with joy as the pair of stowaways sailed home on the ship. They waved at Paula as they went out of sight, motioning their thanks for all that she and her friends had done. Paula smiled and waved back, turning around as Aerodactyl finished off the last of mysterious guards’ Pokémon. Aerodactyl screeched at them terrifyingly, causing them to flee in terror, returning the dock to its peaceful quiet. Paula calmly approached her friends, smiling at them and nodding in success.

    “Yeah, that’s right! You better run!” Aerodactyl bellowed after them. He turned around in disgust as they fled, a grin spreading across his face after the exhilarating battle. The group was quiet and content for a moment, reflecting on their good deed. After a pleasant, silent moment, Munchlax broke the silence and spoke up.

    “Well, not that this wasn’t just a fascinating little adventure, but I think I’ve had enough of this goodie-goodie crap for one day. I’m going back to the Pokémon Center for some food.” He said loudly. “Screw you guys… I’m-ah goin’ home…” he continued. A blank expression spread across Paula’s face as she remembered her trainer’s words. “We’ll be back at 5 o’clock sharp.” she remembered, hearing the words in her mind as clearly as when he had said them. Munchlax strolled past the dumbstruck group as the same thought occurred to the rest of them. Paula spoke up timidly as he went by.

    “Friends…” she stammered. “What time was the boat supposed to leave?” she continued.

    “4:45…” Umbreon replied as the same realization began washing over him. The group stood in shock for a moment before bolting off in a rush after Munchlax. Paula grabbed his hand as they ran past, dragging him along with them. They were in a losing race against the clock to make it back in time, and it was a long way back to the Pokémon Center.

    * * *

    David, Bianca and Cheren had spent a productive day at the open-air Driftveil Market, and had bought quite a few excellent resources for their journey. As they left with their new items, David began to speak up.

    “Do you think Paula is going to like this record I got for her?” he asked. “She seemed pretty bummed about having to watch Munchlax, so I figured she should hear this song.” he continued, pointing to a particular song listed on the label. Bianca giggled as she saw what he meant, speaking up in reply.

    “It’s perfect. It’ll be really cute watching her dance to that.” she answered.

    “I hope they’re okay. I wonder what they’ve been up to…” David pondered, but Cheren interrupted before he could go on.

    “I’m sure they just sat around and talked all day. We’re the main characters after all; why would anything interesting ever happen without us?” he mused quietly.

    “Hey!” David shouted. “No breaking the fourth wall, Cheren. I worked hard putting that up.” Cheren shrugged in indifference, continuing on his way silently.

    “At least I don’t spend my free time writing Pokémon fan fiction.” he muttered.

    Ahem… I heard that…

    As they reached the Pokémon Center and walked through the large glass doors, Paula and the other Pokémon rounded the corner on the opposite street and saw them enter. A look of panic spread across their faces as they realized they were too late.

    “Oh no!” Pachirisu shouted. “What are we gonna do? What are we gonna do?!” she continued. Paula was undeterred though and grit her teeth in determination.

    “Everyone, grab on!” she shouted. Her friends just looked at her in confusion though, not understanding her plan. “Grab ON!” she shouted again. They formed a chain like they had done on the boat in connection with Paula as she prepared to Teleport, but Munchlax was still oblivious to the plan.

    “Munchlax, you too!” Golbat shouted.

    “What is this, I don’t even-” he started to say, but Paula cut him off. She shook with pent up anger and threw herself at him.

    RAAAHH!” she screamed. She leapt at him, tackling him to the ground as she Teleported. It took tremendous strength to Teleport them all like that, but the distance was short and she managed it without a hitch. The group fell to the floor of the jet black playroom just as David, Bianca and Cheren walked in. Paula looked up, holding her head as they entered, and looked at her trainer through tired eyes.

    “Hey Paula, we’re back. How was your day?” David asked just as the clock struck five. Paula sighed in relief as he said this, looking at the other Pokémon as they also rose.

    Hi David!” Munchlax shouted, leaping from the ball pit where he had landed. He once again sprayed balls all around the room, making a mess and irking Paula further; she was too tired to argue with him now though.

    Before she could realize what he was doing or stop him, Munchlax ran up with his arms outstretched and began to speak excitedly to his trainer.

    “Hi David, hi! Me and Paula went on lots of adventures today!” he shouted. “We were on a truck, and then we were on a boat, and then we saw some foreign Pokémon, and then-”

    Munch munch munch munch lax lax munchlax!” he exclaimed. David didn’t understand a word of it and simply looked down at his jubilant Pokémon with a smirk.

    “What’s he saying, Paula?” David asked as he finished. A look of worry spread across Paula’s face for a brief instant, but she calmed herself and tried to act cool.

    “Oh, uh… he just missed you, master, that’s all.” she replied nonchalantly. She shot Munchlax a dirty look to silence him, but Munchlax simply seemed confused.

    “Oh, okay. So what did you guys do all day?” he continued to ask. Paula kept up her cool appearance and replied calmly.

    “Oh, you know… just hung out…” she continued. David smiled at his Kirlia and picked her up for a hug. The happy pair embraced after the day apart and Paula sighed at her good fortune for having made it through the day safely.

    “Well, sounds like you were a good girl and looked after your little brother for me, so we brought you guys back presents.” David started to say. The group reached into their bags and pulled out various items for each of them.

    “Golbat, I got you a very rare item.” Bianca spoke up. She held up a TM from her bag, but it had a curious shine to it, much like the Pokémon it was meant for. “This is a special kind of TM known as a ‘Hidden Machine.’ This one contains the move Fly. You can carry stuff with you now when you are flying, and it will help you with your stamina in flight. Think of it as a more powerful version of your Wing Attack.” she continued. Golbat screeched receptively as she gave him the disc, and he set to work learning the move inside. Bianca giggled as Cheren now spoke up to give away his presents.

    “Gus, Umbreon, I got each of you a TM also. For you, Gus, I got the move Energy Ball, and for Umbreon, Work Up.” Cheren explained. “Energy Ball is a Grass type attack, and will let you shoot a ball of natural energy much like how Shadow Ball works. Work Up helps you hone your mind and lets you strike even stronger, boosting both your Attack and Special Attack.” he continued, handing the machines to their respective Pokémon. Gus and Umbreon smiled at their presents, happy and proud to be growing stronger for him. Now it was David’s turn, and he smiled as he looked at Munchlax.

    “Munchlax, were you a good boy for your sister today?” David asked. Munchlax grinned and nodded his head; Paula giggled to herself in the corner, too tired to be mad. “Well, Driftveil City imports a special type of milk from Johto that comes from Miltank. The lady at the market told us it is the richest, creamiest milk in the world. I thought you might like to try some.” he continued, handing the brimming bottle to Munchlax. Munchlax gasped excitedly and began to drink the silky liquid. It was too rich even for him though and at long last, he had found a food that he had to eat slowly. Munchlax set to work on his new treat, happily sipping at it in the corner. David smiled at his young Pokémon and finally turned to Paula for her presents.

    “Maybe I’m spoiling you a bit, but I think you deserve it.” David started to say. Paula blushed as she looked at him, grinning at his kind words. “I got you two things. A TM like the others, but also something extra; I hope you like it.” he continued.

    “You did not need to get me anything, master.” Paula said shyly, but David protested.

    “You looked after Munchlax all day and were responsible like an adult. That’s more mature than sitting in a stuffy ballroom all day, isn’t it?” he replied. Paula blushed brighter as David smiled, taking the TM out of his bag; he handed it to Paula and started to explain.

    “This TM contains the move Focus Blast. It is a Special Fighting type attack that will greatly improve your coverage. It is notoriously hard to control, but I think you’re ready.” David continued. Paula grinned and set to work trying to learn the move, but David interrupted and took out one other object from his bag.

    “Wait, hold on.” he said. “Before you try and learn Focus Blast, I’ve got one other thing for you.” he continued. David held up a large black disc with a tiny hole in the middle and smiled. Paula looked at it in confusion and started to speak.

    “What is that, master? Is it another TM?” she asked. David smirked and knelt down to her height.

    “No, Paula, it isn’t another TM. This is called a vinyl record, and it plays music if you put it in a record player. You gave up some of your dancing time today to watch Munchlax, so I figured you might like to hear a certain song on here. Would you care to dance?” he asked mischievously. Paula smiled as she heard the words.

    “Master, you know me all too well.” she replied. David took her petite hand and the group retired to the ballroom as the sun began to set outside.

    * * *

    F# F# F# F#, F# E D# C#

    The deep, resonating bass notes of the piano sang clearly from the speaker as the record crackled to life. There was a long pause before the song continued, and from off stage, Paula took a running dive for the dance floor. She slid gracefully on the slick wood with her back to the small, impromptu crowd, standing defiantly in the dark room. The lights were off and the blinds were shut, plunging the room into almost total darkness; she stood with her arms outstretched at her sides and her head bowed. She counted off the beats until the next set of notes and grinned.

    F# F# F# F#, F# E D# C#

    She waited for her cue to spring to life, waiting for the rest of the song to start. As light flooded the room, she leapt into the air and spun, landing proudly before her friends with the biggest grin of her life plastered on her face. As the lyrics began, she started to strut forward sassily, shaking her hips and snapping her fingers as she went. She mouthed the lyrics to the song through a smirk, dancing with all her strength to the pounding drums. David couldn’t help but laugh.

    [Author’s Note: Sung to the tune of “Old Time Rock and Roll” by Bob Seger and The Silver Bullet Band.]

    ♫ Just take those old records off the shelf,
    I’ll sit and listen to ‘em by myself.
    Today’s music ain’t got the same soul,
    I like that old time rock and roll! ♫


    The small crowd of Pokémon and people cheered and screamed for the sassy little Pokémon. She shook her hips and snapped her fingers as she strut forward, dipping and bending to the music. She was having the time of her life, and everyone watching was completely intoxicated by her show.

    ♫ Don’t try to take me to a disco!
    You’ll never even get me out on the floor.
    In 10 minutes I’ll be late for the door,
    I like that old time rock and roll! ♫


    Paula wagged her finger and nodded her head as the line came about the disco. She giggled as she realized how silly she looked and threw her arms into the air in joy. As she landed, she bent forward and shook her short hair wildly, laughing away to herself and having great fun. She continued to spin and dance about the room as the chorus began, moving rhythmically to the beat and bringing an elegance to her movements that only a Kirlia could.

    ♫ Still like that old time rock and roll,
    That kind of music just soothes the soul.
    I reminisce about the days of old,
    With that old time rock and roll! ♫


    As the guitar solo began, Paula slid to her knees on the slick floor and mimed the instrument, flailing wildly and twirling her arms over her head in joy. The small crowd was growing bigger as more and more people came in to see what the commotion was about. Paula was hamming up the crowd, and as the solo ended, she leapt from her knees and flipped over her back, landing daintily and continuing to dance. She raised a finger over her shoulder and then pointed down past her knee, with the other hand rested on her outstretched hip. She wore a confident grin, repeating the motion several times as the verse continued.

    ♫ Won’t go to hear ‘em play a tango;
    I’d rather hear some blues or funky old soul.
    There’s only one sure way to get me to go;
    Start playing old time rock and roll! ♫


    Paula shook her head “no” over the first line, and grinned and nodded over the rest. Her small, controlled smile began to grow as the song went on, stretching across her whole face and finally out of control at the end of the verse. She slid forward and continued to dance, miming the words of the next verse with her lips.

    ♫ Call me a relic, call me what you will,
    Say I’m old fashioned, say I’m over the hill.
    Today’s music ain’t got the same soul,
    I like that old time rock and roll! ♫


    She clutched at her back and hunched over during the first two lines. As if by magic, she slowly sprang back to life, growing more and more energetic as the verse went on. By the end of it, she was bouncing, spinning and dancing jubilantly again, still wearing her beaming grin. There was an unmistakable energy and elegance to her movements that no human could have conveyed; she seemed to naturally be able to embody the spirit of the song, and always knew just the right step for her otherwise haphazard seeming movements. It all came together in a beautiful living symphony of movement and harmony. Adrenaline coursed through her blood and her tiny chest heaved as the music continued, filling her with the spirit she had been longing for all day.

    ♫ Still like that old time rock and roll,
    That kind of music just soothes the soul,
    I reminisce about the days of old,
    With that old time rock and roll! ♫


    Paula again took a running slide towards the continually growing crowd, falling to her knees again and miming the saxophone as it took its solo. There was a wild, uncontrollable energy to her movements that mimicked the power of the sax. She fell to her back and kicked her legs in the air like a child, losing her unmatched elegance temporarily but living for the fun of the moment.

    ♫ Still like that old time rock and roll,
    That kind of music just soothes the soul,
    I reminisce about the days of old,
    With that old time rock and roll!
    Still like that old time rock and roll,
    That kind of music just soothes the soul,
    I reminisce about the days of old,
    With that old time rock and roll! ♫


    As the entirety of the band minus the drums and the singer dropped out, Paula leapt to her feet and stood with a wide stance. She raised her arms above her head and clapped to the rhythm, getting the whole crowd involved. It had grown now to a sizable number, especially when compared to how it had started as just David, Bianca, Cheren and the other Pokémon. Paula’s rhythmic clapping and mesmerizingly shaking hips led the crowd in a frenzy, but no one was more enthralled than Munchlax; he wore a grin as large as his sister’s and clapped along with her in pride and joy. He had given his sister a hard time during the course of the day, and harsh words were exchanged in flashes of anger, but deep down he loved her, and just knew how to push her buttons. It was much like the relationship David and Cheren had had as children in Nuvema Town, now passed on to the next generation in the grand tradition of harmless ribbing. As the song neared its conclusion, the record player belted out the final chorus. Paula redoubled her efforts and danced her beating little heart out.

    ♫ HEY! Still like that old time rock and roll,
    That kind of music just soothes the soul,
    I reminisce about the days of old,
    With that old time rock and roll!
    Still like that old time rock and roll!♫


    The song built to its conclusion and Paula sensed the crescendo. She danced and spun through the air for the final solo; as it reached its zenith, she bent her knees, took a deep breath, and flipped several times over her back, landing gracefully on beat with the final note and looking down knowingly. She wore a small smile, trying to downplay her physical feat; her deep breathing and beating heart betrayed her however and she fell to the ground in a tired mess of joy with a content smile on her lips. The crowd roared for her performance; she stood after several seconds and curtsied politely before rejoining her friends.

    Everyone wanted to try and talk to her at once, but one voice overpowered them all. Pushing his way through the crowds, Munchlax ran up to his sister and embraced her proudly. He was a bit overpowering and almost knocked her over, but it was out of blindfolded pride and admiration more so than any malice. Paula was startled by the gesture and didn’t know how to react at first.

    That was AWESOME, Paula!” he shouted in his native tongue. He was overcome with pride and joy for his sister and stammered to say more but could not. Paula smiled and hugged her little brother back, putting the day’s events behind her. As the pair separated, she looked up at her trainer and saw him grin.

    “Well, master?” she asked through a smirk. David remained silent and grinned back at her. He reached down and put his hands below her arms, lifting her and embracing her around his neck. He remained silent, preferring to speak telepathically to her instead.

    “That very well may…” he started to say, pausing to think before continuing. “…have been the cutest thing I ever saw.” he continued. “We’ve got to get you into show business, kid.” Paula buried her face in his jacket and could feel tiny tears well up in her eyes.

    “Thank you, master…” she thought quietly to herself.

    Though her day had been hectic and filled with turmoil at the hands of Munchlax, she had still managed to keep her little brother out of too much trouble and impress her trainer. On top of all that, she had managed to dance to her heart’s content, as was the pride of her species. As she rested her head down to sleep for the night a few hours later, she thought back on her day and pondered whether Munchlax’s antics had made it not worth it; after a moment of thought, she decided she wouldn’t have changed a thing. Somewhere under the ocean moonlight, Christian and Gloria lay together, enjoying the salty air and the soothing rhythm of the waves; they looked up at the moon and thought of their new friend: the proud, elegant Kirlia who had saved their lives. Paula’s unmatched mind and delicate body relaxed as she drifted back off to sleep.

  2. #77
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    I am so glad you stopped using Beatles songs and started using real rock and roll.

    Also, never change your writing style. Every Pokemon character was constantly making me laugh my ass off, as well as your way of breaking the fourth wall.

  3. #78
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    That was the funniess(?) chapter you ever made. keep up the good work
    † I am a Christian, and proud of it! Copy and paste this if you are too.†
    Quote Originally Posted by djhappy View Post
    I watch you while you're sleeping.....
    Quote Originally Posted by Me View Post
    0__0

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    Isn't it something whatthe will of Arceus intertwines us with?

    First gripe: I couldn't get ahold of an accecnt for Christian & Gloria. I know you said Italian, but thier voices just wouldn't play.

    Second gripe: You know, Munchy went from everyone's favorite bottomless pit to downright rude in this chapter. Not the fondest character choice in this chapter.

    Seeing a Sarcoughagus and a dinosaur go BOOGEDY BOOGEDY BOOGEDY BOO! is funny. Five stars for that line alone.

    The Dance scene I skimmed (see earlier comment about reading around lyrics) but was a lot of fun. And I totally didn't jump immediately to Paula in a Hanes commercial... that came after the scene was read...

    Eh, the TM scene didn't really feel all that special to me.

    Byt he way, Glover happened to misplace a boat in Johto (World Turns, chapters 8 and 10, to be published) belonging to "guys with snazzy outfits" and matchign your description. It's showing up in Unova, and that's that.

    “Challenge accepted…”
    Challenge? To what is she referring?

    Cheren shouyld be forced to do community service in rebuildinbg the wall he tore down.

    Oh, and one more thing.

    HUZZZAH! NO ONE EVOLVED!! *dances*
        Spoiler:- Breeding stuff:

  5. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by AudinoGlitch View Post
    I am so glad you stopped using Beatles songs and started using real rock and roll.
    ő_ő

    Thems is fightin' words, son. Don't make me send Cheren's Aerodactyl to your house...

    Quote Originally Posted by Glover View Post
    Isn't it something whatthe will of Arceus intertwines us with?
    Um... sure? Not sure what you're referring to.

    Quote Originally Posted by Glover View Post
    Second gripe: You know, Munchy went from everyone's favorite bottomless pit to downright rude in this chapter. Not the fondest character choice in this chapter.
    As the ending showed, he didn't really mean any of it, he was just trying to get under Paula's skin. He loves his "sister" though and just has a one-track mind.

    Quote Originally Posted by Glover View Post
    And I totally didn't jump immediately to Paula in a Hanes commercial... that came after the scene was read...
    What? That scene comes from the movie Risky Business. Not sure again what you mean by the Hanes commercial...

    Quote Originally Posted by Glover View Post
    Challenge? To what is she referring?
    http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/f-yeah-seaking
    http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/challenge-accepted

    I considered putting these links in the Author's Comments, but I had hoped that on a Pokemon forum people would know "F*** Yeah, Seaking!"

    Quote Originally Posted by Glover View Post
    HUZZZAH! NO ONE EVOLVED!! *dances*
    Nor in the next chapter. Nor in the chapter prior to this past one. I've been good about that.

    Edit: Oh, and by the way, you guys should check the OP if you haven't recently. I spent a few hours last night making a banner for the first post, reorganizing the OP a good deal, and I added a bunch of new chapter titles for future chapters. Speculate away!

  6. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosBlizzard View Post
    ő_ő

    Thems is fightin' words, son. Don't make me send Cheren's Aerodactyl to your house...
    Don't worry, I've got an Aerodactyl too, I know how to defend my house with ice types. I'm not a Beatles fan either. Decent music, not my cup of coffee. (Because in America, we don't drink tea. :P) I prefer Aerosmith's version of "Come Together" for example.
    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosBlizzard View Post

    Um... sure? Not sure what you're referring to.
    Spellign and grammar is yur friend. CAUSE IT AIN'T MINE! What I'mreferring to is how Arceus/God has us do these little side trips for something much bigger.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosBlizzard View Post
    What? That scene comes from the movie Risky Business. Not sure again what you mean by the Hanes commercial...
    Hanes did (I believe for their socks) A series of commercials of people sliding out on a hardwood floor on their sock feet dancing to Seger's Old Time Rock and Roll. And I've never seen Risky Business

    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosBlizzard View Post
    http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/f-yeah-seaking
    http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/challenge-accepted


    I considered putting these links in the Author's Comments, but I had hoped that on a Pokemon forum people would know "F*** Yeah, Seaking!"

    Ah, there's the problem. I don't pay attention to, nor do I follow crowdsthat use memes.

    edit:

    I never got much of an apologetic vibe from Munchlax far as blowing everyone off goes. Appreciation, yes. And maybe one for getting them in trouble, but for thibngs like his comments about Christian and Gloria's story, nope. And not for rather eating then helping them.
    Last edited by Glover; 5th October 2011 at 2:39 AM.
        Spoiler:- Breeding stuff:

  7. #82
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    Sorry for not being onboard for a while. It's so busy at work.

    Anyways, nice chapter. I quite enjoyed it.

    I would just like to say before moving onto the nice part of the review that you didn't really need a whole chapter dedicated to showcasing each and every Pokemon's personalities. You can do that during the main story.

    But I was just saying. This was a pretty nice chapter, and although slightly random, it came out nicely. ^__^

    One more thing; italian accents from Kanto? If anything, I would have made Kanto/Johto Japanese. Hoenn or Sinnoh (I'd go with Sinnoh, but whatever) seem like a better choice for the accent, but I'm not the one writing. And Munchlax seemed just as confused as I was, so I'm going to assume it was intentional.

    But other than that, I liked the characterization. Paula, despite her kindness, is very much a part of the emotion Pokemon evolutionary line. Her emotions really seem to come out; whether it be happiness, anger, etc. They run strong. Her personality was also very nice. I like her sass and her formalities colliding.

    And Munchlax was kind of cute too. Sometimes, he seemed a bit much, but it works. Still one of my favorite characters.

    Now the rest definitely had their own respective personalities, but sometimes, it seemed a bit lacking. I can say Pachirisu's very much like her trainer, while Umbreon's very suave. But the rest kind of confuse me; I don't really know what they're like. Gus, Aerodactyl, and Golbat seemed to be background figures that didn't really do much. Side characters I guess. Not a bad thing, but you said you wanted this chapter to show what the Pokemon's individual personalities were like, and it really only amplified Paula's and Munchlax, as well as solidify Pachirisu's and finally give Umbreon one. Just something to think about.

    I don't know FYeahSeaking, but I do understand the memes. Made me laugh.

    I have to agree with Glover on this though; it's nice that you did include the TMs, but you didn't really expound upon them or anything. Golbat just kind of took at and worked on learning it somehow from a disc. Iono, it wasn't a bad thing. It's just you made it seem special, but it wasn't all that grand.

    The chase scene was pretty eventful though. A lot of small things were taken notice of, which is a good thing on your part. It very easily could have been an unnoticed chase scene through the streets. Including the oddity of the Pokemon just sort of wandering through was a nice thing to add. I really liked the Houndour scene; it was pretty amusing.

    And another nice touch was the dance scene; writing a dance scene is kind of hard, but you pulled it off really well. I like how you incorporated the chords being played, but it's a little weird for those who don't understand chords. But very ingenious of you; can't describe music, so you describe the thing that describes it. I see what you did there.

    And that leaves... Nothing else to say really. haha. It was a pretty good chapter; a very nice break from the rest of the story. I can't wait for the rest of the chapters!

    On a side note, the OP looks pretty good. I do like the character art that you put up. Doesn't look very choppy, which is always cool. At least the story has some fancy artwork. And I see Bianca gets Haxorus, which is surprising. I wonder how that'll work out? And David's Galvantula? Nice. haha

    EDIT: Green Day references. ^__^

    Feel like you need a little more Pokemon in your life? Tune into our show!
    EPISODE 55 - SLOWPOKE HOLIDAY
    Looking for something Pokemon-related to listen to while playing through Pokemon XY? This episode is for you!!
    Released: 12/11/14


    Guess who claimed Luxray?!

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    Great fanfic!!! its amazing! But.... one question. Why the HELL does munchlax go from being awesome sweep machine to a bastard in pooh's adventure?
    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Harvest View Post
    What was that Regarde. I couldn't hear you with all of that dick in your mouth.
    Quote Originally Posted by D-idara View Post
    Well, actually Blaziken isn't really Uber because some people whined about how they were getting owned by it. I mean, it doesn't stand a chance in the Uber enviroment.

    And Reuniclus...i see everyone using him, could you tell me any actual advantages over Musharna?

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    FINALLY!

    After three days of constant reading, I have FINALLY gotten to par on the latest chapter, which by the way, is my favorite so far! Now I can FINALLY tell you how awesome your reading is!

    ...Sorry, just that I didn't want to just post until I got to your most recent work, and I really like this fan fic! You should write a book! Also, I love the references and fourth-wall breaking. I really like stories like that.

    These are just my opinions for now: I'm surprised you didn't get the name Paula from Earthbound. That's what I thought it was from. Another random thing I seem to think of... McCartney and Lennon have sort of a Bulk and Skull vibe to them. Their theme always comes up in my head every time they appear. That's probably just me though.
    Want to read an epic reinactment of a series that needs more love? Click the userbar! As of 3/16/13, Chapter 50 is up!

    Credit to Trickster44 for the userbar!

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    Quote Originally Posted by mudkips View Post
    Great fanfic!!! its amazing! But.... one question. Why the HELL does munchlax go from being awesome sweep machine to a bastard in pooh's adventure?
    I was going for simplistic and one-track-mind. He was just trying to get under Paula's skin for teh lulz. He wasn't meant to be malicious. Seeing as none of you got that though, I obviously didn't convey it well. Munchlax will be toned down if I do another chapter like that again.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hilijix View Post
    FINALLY!

    After three days of constant reading, I have FINALLY gotten to par on the latest chapter, which by the way, is my favorite so far! Now I can FINALLY tell you how awesome your reading is!

    ...Sorry, just that I didn't want to just post until I got to your most recent work, and I really like this fan fic! You should write a book! Also, I love the references and fourth-wall breaking. I really like stories like that.
    I'm glad you like it. Thanks for the dedication.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hilijix View Post
    These are just my opinions for now: I'm surprised you didn't get the name Paula from Earthbound. That's what I thought it was from.
    I have never played any of the Earthbound games (unless Super Smash Brothers counts, since Ness and Lucas are in them), but I am aware of that character. The name Paula actually comes from a real-life friend of mine. Paula the Kirlia is not supposed to be based on Paula the human, but the name is a direct reference.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hilijix View Post
    Another random thing I seem to think of... McCartney and Lennon have sort of a Bulk and Skull vibe to them. Their theme always comes up in my head every time they appear. That's probably just me though.
    I'm afraid I don't get the reference. In a very general, simplistic sense, Lennon is supposed to be the more tactical and calculating of the two, while McCartney is more about brute force. I can't stress enough however that Lennon and McCartney are not bad people. Their aspiration of helping Pokemon who, in their minds, have been kidnapped and tortured is a noble one; they're just in with a bad lot, and are quickly realizing that.

    ---

    The next chapter will probably be up tomorrow afternoon or early evening. It is the shortest one in terms of number of pages that we've had in a while, but a fairly significant amount of things happen in it. Check back soon.

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    I may be a new reader, but that doesn't mean I can't hate you. I am so far behind on my homework from reading this awesome story.
    Witness the truly awesome power of my claimed Gyarados.

    Gyarados used Epic Awesomeness!
    It's super effective!
    The foe lost OVER 9000% of its health!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Zero View Post
    "I moved my Monopoly piece forward two squares when nobody was looking, but I didn't use an action replay so it's totally okay"

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        Spoiler:- Author's Notes:


    Chronicles of Unova

    Chapter 14: Into the Lion's Den

    A crowd at least fifty people strong was gathered around the entrance to the Driftveil City Gym. They were all whispering and clamoring to get to the front so they could see what was going on. Clay stood before the entrance with his hands at his sides in a wide stance, angrily staring down the man opposite him; behind him stood Zinzolin and the five Plasma grunts who had been arrested at the warehouse, all looking around in terror as if they were afraid of the bright morning sun. Standing calmly and commandingly opposite him with the crowd to his back, the imposing, ornate figure of a fellow Plasma Sage stood to defy Clay. This was no ordinary Sage like Zinzolin or Gorm however, this was Ghetsis himself. David, Bianca and Cheren arrived at the gym for their battles and watched as events unfolded between the two men. Ghetsis began to speak.

    “Mr. Clay, I am afraid I simply don’t follow.” Ghetsis said calmly, flipping his hand dismissively. A cool, smug smile spread across his lips, irking Clay even further. “You utilized a fully armed SWAT team and halted all traffic out of the city a few days ago to arrest my operatives behind you, and then proceeded to hold them in prison against their will with no end to their sentence in sight, but you cannot even tell me a single law that they broke? What have they done wrong to warrant this?” he continued. Clay took a step towards him, raising his finger and bellowing back at Ghetsis.

    “N’ah you listen here, you varmint, I know yer kind! I know the kin’es uh things Plasma’s done! You lot steal Pokémon from trainers and brainwash yer operatives t’uh do yer biddin’!” he exclaimed. “These men are wearin’ the uniform of Team Plasma guards. That’s all AH need in order to know they’re bad news.” he continued. Clay folded his arms and stood firmly rooted in place, shooting Ghetsis a look that could have sliced through steel. Ghetsis sighed but continued to grin his smug smile.

    “Well Mr. Clay, I am truly sorry you feel that way. My organization no longer supports such things; we are committed to Pokémon Liberation through peaceful means, rather than violence or robbery. We stopped doing that after I had a fateful meeting with the Castelia City Gym Leader, Burgh.” Ghetsis replied. “Unless you can provide me with a law that any of these men broke, then either I will be taking them back to our headquarters with me or I shall be forced to take legal action against you to ensure their safety. Take your pick…” he continued. Before Clay could reply however, David pushed his way to the front of the crowd with Bianca and Cheren in tow and began to speak.

    “I can name several laws that those two broke.” he said loudly, pointing to Lennon and McCartney in particular. “Assault, disturbing the peace, and of course the big one, attempted murder of a senior!” he continued. The crowd gasped as he made his claim; Ghetsis frowned, finally breaking his conceited smile.

    “It’s true!” Bianca shouted. “David and I stopped them from attacking an old man in Nimbasa City last week with their Pokémon! He was elderly and frail; if they had landed any solid hits, he easily could have died!” she continued. Lennon and McCartney both wore scowls that almost rivaled Clay’s, but remained silent, waiting for Ghetsis to come to their defense.

    “That is quite an accusation, young man…” Ghetsis murmured quietly. “Attempted murder? That is something we have never condoned at any point in our organization’s history.” he mused. “But tell me, can you provide any proof to back up your claim” he continued. He turned to Lennon and McCartney, now addressing them. “Tell me, men, is this accusation true?” he asked simply.

    “Murder, you say?” Lennon replied. “Why no, Lord Ghetsis, we would never do such a thing!” he lied. “We, just like everyone else in Team Plasma, simply want to help the poor, abused Pokémon; we would never attack anyone over it though.” he continued. Ghetsis’ thin smile returned to his face and he turned back towards David and Bianca.

    “Well, children, it is your word against ours. Obviously one of us is lying, but there is no way to prove who it is. Since no evidence of a crime has been displayed, I will be escorting my operatives back to our headquarters now, if you don’t mind…” he said venomously. He turned to look at Clay expectantly; Clay continued to wear his stern, angry expression with his arms folded, but he had to admit defeat. He lowered his head and turned away, motioning for the captured men to return to Ghetsis. The Plasma operatives grouped together and began shuffling through the crowd away from the Gym.

    “Lord Ghetsis!” Zinzolin whispered as they retreated. “I must speak to you at once!” he continued softly. “These two traitors showed disloyalty to the organization and heresy to the cause during our last mission! They must be punished at once!” he said, motioning to Lennon and McCartney. Lennon started to speak up in protest, but Ghetsis cut him off.

    “Silence, Zinzolin…” he muttered in a tired voice. “I care not for your gossip of the month. Any legitimate concern you may have inadvertently stumbled onto will be taken care of however; these two are being removed from standard duty, effective immediately.” he continued. Lennon again tried to speak up in defense of himself and his partner, but Ghetsis once again cut him off, turning over his shoulder to address the pair directly.

    “You two are being removed from standard duty because you are being promoted to Special Operations status. My son is putting together a task force for one final brave and noble mission, and you two are to be a part of it.” he said both proudly and ominously. Dumbstruck smiles slowly spread across their faces as they heard the news; Zinzolin on the other hand wore a bitter frown.

    “We… but… I…” Lennon stammered. “Lord N wants us?!” he finally managed to say.

    “He asked for you by name…” Ghetsis replied stoically. “Special Agent Lennon and Special Agent McCartney, you are to rendezvous with my son at Chargestone Cave at the head of Route 6. You will receive your first mission there. Congratulations, and… other such nonsense…” he muttered disinterestedly. Zinzolin finally managed to push through his shock and protested.

    Lord Ghetsis, surely you cannot be serious!” he said incredulously. “These two heretics defied my orders and verbally assaulted me! They should not receive promotions after such-” he started to say, but Lennon and McCartney cut him off.

    “We can…” Lennon started to say confidently.

    “…and we did.” McCartney finished, smirking to himself. Zinzolin was flabbergasted and started to raise his voice.

    “They. Can. Not. SPEAK. To. Me. Like. That!” he said in absolute shock, but Ghetsis simply sighed.

    “They are Special Agents now, Zinzolin, they no longer report to the Sages; they are removed from the standard chain of command. They report only to myself and N. Get over it.” he replied sternly. Zinzolin started to respond, but was forced to decide against it. He lowered his head, sulking in defeat, but not before shooting Lennon and McCartney a piercing glare. The group continued on their way, heading back into town. The Gym was now well out of sight as they left the city and began heading for Route 6.

    * * *

    The crowd began to disperse as the Plasma operatives left. David heard them muttering amongst themselves about “traitors,” but didn’t catch any of the specifics of it. He glared at Lennon and McCartney as they went past, but they didn’t seem to notice. Soon only he, Bianca, Cheren and Clay remained outside the Gym; Clay still stood sulking in defeat, silently thinking to himself angrily. After a moment, he began to move quietly towards the doors of the Gym, indicating for them to follow him.

    The Gym was much smaller than most; in fact, it was only one room in size. Granted it was a sizable room, but it appeared to be nothing more than an office reception area with a desk and some potted flowers lining it. There was definitely no room for a battlefield, and it in fact appeared void of almost anything useful to a Gym Leader. Along the floor in the back however was a metal plate with guard rails along it; it stuck out among the carpeted room, perhaps leading somewhere. There was a humbly dressed man standing on it and Clay walked towards him, motioning for the group to do the same.

    “Howdy, Hank.” Clay said, tipping his hat to the man. Hank did the same as Clay turned to address the challengers. “Kids, this here is m’ah ol’e business partner, Hank Hill. Hank’s gonna be the judge f’er our matches today.” he explained. “You folks go ahead an’ g’it cordial; I’m gonna go g’it the elevator ready.” he continued. Clay stepped towards the corner of the room and began entering data into a computer; Hank stepped forward towards David with a hand outstretched.

    “Howdy.” he said in a similar accent. “Hank Hill, Driftveil Propane. I sell propane and propane accessories.” he continued in a very businesslike manner. He shook each of their hands sequentially, smiling cordially to himself. The group introduced themselves as Clay headed back across the room towards them. He stepped onto the metal plate alongside Hank and motioned for the group to do the same.

    “I’m sorry ya’ll had to see that th’ar display with Team Plasma.” he muttered as they stepped on. “Ah don’t give a damn ‘bout what anyone says, those folks are trouble, an’ ah don’e trust ‘em any farther than ah can throw ‘em.” he continued. He punched some buttons on a nearby control panel and the metal grate began to descend. Shocked and confused looks spread across David, Bianca and Cheren’s faces as the furnished room slowly disappeared above their heads. The elevator began descending deeper and deeper into a dark pit, illuminated only by torches and dug straight into the earth. The pit seemed to stretch on forever with no way back to the surface. Seeing their looks of terror, Clay began to explain.

    “Ya’ll look like you seen a ghost.” he said. “Didn’t you lot know I’m a Ground-type trainer?” he continued. They shook their heads “no,” to which he laughed heartily and continued to speak.

    “Folks call me the ‘Underground Boss.’ I’ve invested in nearly every kin’e uh business in this town, and the majority uh m’ah wealth comes from the shipping industry, but the first business ah ever owned was in mining.” he started to say. “Minin’ sparked m’ah interest in Ground types and has always been a passion o’ mine. I built m’ah Gym over the site of m’ah company’s first mine to remind me uh where I came from. I started m’ah career at the very bottom of society as a farm hand back in Sinnoh; I worked m’ah ass off t’uh g’it t’uh where ah am today. The depths uh this mine helps remind me uh that.” he said, looking around nostalgically. “Capitalism is what makes our economy and our society function. With the proper workin’ ethic, even a nobody like me can reach the top.” he continued. “I call this… my Lion’s Den.” he concluded. The elevator was nearing the bottom of the shaft as he said this. As it reached the bottom, flood lights burst on, illuminating a massive underground cavern. Brilliant green gemstones hung from the walls, sparkling in the bright light; they were each the size of semi-trucks, untouched and unharvested from the ground they had formed in. Clay and Hank stepped off of the elevator and towards the massive battlefield in the center of the cave as the group of adventurers stared in wonder at the beauty around them.

    “Well? Who’s goin’ first?” Clay bellowed expectantly. His cry pulled the group’s attention back into focus and David stepped forward to accept the challenge. The trainers took up positions opposite each other on the field and drew their starting Pokéballs for battle.

    “Alright, gentlemen…” Hank said in a slow, deliberate drawl. “I want a fair fight. This will be a 2-on-2 battle between Clay, the Driftveil City Gym Leader, and David, the challenger from Nuvema Town. I will determine when a Pokémon is unfit to go on. Are we clear?” he continued. David and Clay nodded, but Clay spoke up in response.

    “Yeah yeah, we know the rules, ya varmint.” he said sarcastically. “Quit’cher pontificatin’.” he continued. A small, confused frown spread across Hank’s face, but he put it aside as the trainers released their Pokémon.

    “Munchlax, go!” David shouted. He drew the Pokéball and threw it onto the field, releasing the Pokémon inside. Munchlax struck up a fighting pose, staring down his opponent with a cheeky grin as he prepared to for battle. Clay tipped his hat and drew a Pokéball as well, throwing it to meet his opponent.

    “Krokorok, come on out!” he shouted. The confident crocodile sprang from the ball, striking a relaxed pose and folding his arms dismissively. He tipped his snout up at Munchlax, staring down at him over the bridge of his nose. The sandy beast seemed to drip with an air of superiority and strength, glaring at Munchlax sternly and calmly; his Intimidate ability took effect, setting Munchlax ill at ease. Hank called for the battle to begin and the trainers issued their commands.

    “Krokorok, use Sandstorm!” Clay shouted. Krokorok maintained his relaxed pose, shutting his eyes and concentrating. From all directions, sand flowed through the room and whipped up the air. It seemed to radiate off of the dirt and stone walls themselves, filling the air in a fine mist. It stung at Munchlax’s eyes, but his thick hide took the beating in stride. Krokorok continued to stand like a statue, embracing the sand to strengthen himself. David took action and issued his starting command.

    “Munchlax, Earthquake!” he shouted. Munchlax used the sand to his advantage, leaping into the air and smashing to the ground below. Whereas the tremor normally would have only moved through the ground, it now had all three dimensions to move through. The wave reverberated through the sand, striking Krokorok on all points. His Intimidating glare broke as the strike hit him, falling to the ground and struggling to rise. Clay seemed unaffected by the staggeringly powerful blow however, simply calling coolly for a new command.

    “Don’t jus’ sit th’ar and take that, ya varmint! Bulldoze!” he shouted. Krokorok struggled to rise, but the whipping sand helped bolster him. He took a mighty stomp on the ground, trying to do the same thing Munchlax had done, but his version was much weaker. Munchlax struggled to maintain his balance, but the hit did little damage to his bulky body. He righted himself and began to charge.

    “Finish this, Munchlax; Body Slam!” David commanded. Though pushing through the raging Sandstorm was difficult, Munchlax charged with all his strength towards his tired foe. He again leapt into the air, falling with a resounding “smash!” on top of his opponent. Krokorok had sustained too much damage and could not go on; Munchlax had won the first round having taken hardly any damage at all. Hank raised his arm towards David and began to speak.

    “Krokorok is unable to battle. Round one goes to the challenger!” he shouted through a thin smile. Clay silently returned his Pokémon to its Pokéball, but a mischievous grin was spreading across his face. He drew his next Pokéball and prepared for the second round.

    “This will be Clay’s only other Pokémon…” Cheren whispered to Bianca. “Munchlax still seems in pretty good shape. I wonder if maybe Clay isn’t all he’s cracked up to be…” he continued. Bianca pursed her lips in confusion, but couldn’t exactly complain about the outcome. Clay released his second Pokémon, preparing for battle.

    “Excadrill, y’er turn!” he shouted, restraining a laugh. The gigantic mole landed with a “stomp!” among the swirling sand, a cheeky grin spreading across his face too. He raised and lowered his massive Steel claws menacingly several times, waiting for the round to start. After verifying that the trainers were set, Hank called for them to fight.

    “Excadrill, use Horn Drill!” Clay shouted maliciously. Excadrill put his claws together and began to attack, but there was something odd about his movements. He stood proudly, preparing for his attack one moment, but he had simply vanished the next. He moved like a blur, nearly too fast to even be seen. Munchlax reeled back in shock as his opponent disappeared, feeling the piercing pain of his attack just a second later. The spinning claws dug into his back, dealing absolutely crushing damage and defeating him instantly. As quickly as he had appeared, Excadrill vanished again, reappearing across the field before his trainer. Munchlax fell to the ground in defeat, unable to withstand the blow. Hank was shocked but raised his hand towards Clay to signal the quick end of the second round.

    Bwaha! Munchlax is unable to battle! Round two goes to the Gym Leader!” he shouted in surprise. David was dumbstruck by his sudden defeat and recalled Munchlax in shock. Clay laughed heartily and looked at him squarely through the raging sand.

    “Sand Rush, kid! My Excadrill’s Speed is doubled during a Sandstorm!” he chuckled. David grit his teeth angrily, but drew his second Pokéball to continue.

    “Both trainers have lost one Pokémon.” Hank explained. “Round three will determine the outcome of the match.” he continued. David released Paula from her Pokéball and waited for Hank to call for the start of the round.

    “Master, may I make a suggestion?” he heard Paula say in his head. He acknowledged the sentiment and she continued. “All Pokémon have a special Ability such as that Excadrill’s Sand Rush or Krokorok’s Intimidate. Ms. Bianca’s Golbat has Inner Focus, Mr. Cheren’s Umbreon has Synchronize, and so on. I am a Pokémon, aren’t I?” she asked rhetorically. “Well, then logic would dictate that I too have a special Ability. May I demonstrate it to you?” she continued. A sly grin slowly spread across David’s face as he heard her suggestion.

    “You know what you’re doing, right, Paula?” he asked patronizingly. Paula turned to look at him, a sheepish and incredulous smile spreading across her face as well.

    “Master, you do realize you are speaking to me, right? Paula the Kirlia? When have I ever not known what I am doing?” she replied mockingly, putting her hands on her hips. David stifled a laugh as Hank called for the round to begin.

    Excadrill smiled devilishly to itself as it vanished again. Paula grinned back though and began to glow with a faint blue light. She took a moment to concentrate, resonating with psychic power, and then vanished as well. She moved just as quickly as Excadrill, copying his Sand Rush Ability with her Trace. Excadrill was thrown off guard by her newfound Speed, losing his edge against her as the Sandstorm’s effect on the field now became neutral; the battle would be fought at high, but equal speeds.

    “Trace.” David heard Paula say quietly in his mind. “My Ability allows me to copy the Ability of the Pokémon I am in battle with. With only one exception, it is unique to my species.” she continued. David smiled cunningly, having regained his footing in the battle; victory wasn’t beyond his grasp just yet.

    “Paula, hit back with Focus Blast!” David shouted excitedly. As the pair continued to race through the sand, Paula began to focus and build up the power for the strike. A pulsating bundle of red-brown light and energy formed before her as she shaped and molded it with her hands. She cradled the ball of energy as it grew larger, shaking with power that was almost beyond her control. She lined up the shot and let the attack fly, but at such high speeds it was difficult to control. The bundle of light went wild and slammed into one of the giant crystals protruding from the wall, shattering off a large chunk and sending a mist of green powder flying through the air. The sight was a beautiful one, but Excadrill now had an opportunity to strike back.

    “Dig, Excadrill.” Clay commanded authoritatively. Excadrill burrowed into the dirt, filling the cavity behind him with sand. He moved like a lightning bolt through the ground, flying from a hole behind Paula with tremendous strength. Thanks to Paula’s Trace of Sand Rush however, she was too quick and threw up a shield of Heal Pulse to block the attack. The high-speed battle was fascinating to watch, but the Sandstorm was hurting them more by killing their accuracy than it was helping at this point.

    Focus Blast was a terrifically powerful move, one of the most powerful Fighting type attacks in existence, but controlling the brilliant bundle of birr once it was formed was notoriously difficult. Even the most skilled of Special fighters had trouble consistently hitting with the raw power and strength of the move. Paula was a mighty Psychic, but her tiny, delicate body had exceptional difficulty controlling the wild blast; couple that with the high speeds that not only her target but that she herself was moving at, and the attack was almost sure to miss. Knowing she would need more solid footing to launch the attack accurately, David ordered her to remain still and focus on her aim. Paula stood like a beautiful gargoyle as the sand whipped around her, catching fleeting glimpses of Excadrill as he passed around her like a ghostly desert spirit. The sand whipped her short hair and skirt, but she remained still and concentrated. She closed her eyes and focused, building another bundle of energy and light with which to attack. She cradled it close to her thin stomach as it grew in size, building with power and struggling to break her grasp. It took every ounce of concentration she had to control the energy, but she held it in as she waited for a chance to strike. Excadrill decided he had toyed with her long enough and moved through the sand to attack. He again dove underground, coating himself in a thick armor of sand, and leapt at her from the dirt to strike. Paula felt time slow as she prepared to fire the blast. Excadrill was charging toward her with his claws outstretched; she slowly went through the motion of pivoting on the tips of her toes to face him, not so much “shooting” or “firing” the blast as she was simply presenting it to him and letting it go on its own. The bundle of energy shot loose as her perception time began to speed up again, catching him squarely in his exposed abdomen. A look of horror and pain spread across his face as the attack clipped him, falling back and landing on the ground with a “thud!” Paula reopened her eyes and saw that her aim had been true. The Fighting-type attack had done tremendous damage to her Steel-type opponent; his armor of sand crumbled as he struggled to stand. David tried to convey as much pride and excitement for her small victory that he could, causing her to blush shyly.

    Excadrill rose and held his stomach, trying to focus his vision. He shook off the disorientation and began to run again, but he faltered as the Sandstorm began to peter out. Krokorok’s Sandstorm attack could only last for so long, and it had been a fair amount of time since he had summoned it. As the sand began to fall to the ground and cease to blow, Excadrill lost his footing as his ability to utilize Sand Rush left him. He looked around in panic as his weather effect abandoned him, turning to look at Paula as she confidently began to march towards him. She took long, ominous steps as her victory became more and more assured. Excadrill panicked and burrowed into the ground to try and escape. Clay called for him to use one last Dig attack to try and do some damage, but the decision proved to be fatal.

    “Paula, one last Focus Blast!” David said, trying to restrain his excitement as victory came within his grasp. Paula daintily strode up to the hole that Excadrill had dug and began to generate a third and final Focus Blast. She didn’t have to worry about controlling this one however; she fell to her knees and simply dropped the bundle of energy into the hole. She waved cutely as it went, shooting down the tunnel like a pinball through a chute. With nowhere but the path Excadrill was defining to go, it followed after him doggedly, striking from behind just as he resurfaced. The attack hit him again squarely, soundly defeating him as he fell to the ground in a slump. Paula walked calmly to his unconscious form and sat down politely on his massive back, folding her legs and wrapping her arms around her knees. She smiled daintily at Hank, waiting expectantly to hear his judgment.

    “Ah-haha! Excadrill is definitely unable to battle! The challenger is the winner!” he proclaimed through a smile. David shouted with joy and ran out onto the field to embrace his Pokémon. Paula rose gently off of her impromptu bench to meet him, throwing her arms around his neck in celebration of their victory. While she was far from mastering the wild attack, she had made great strides in utilizing the raw power of Focus Blast; this would be a day to remember.

    “Gah… Excadrill, return…” Clay said disappointedly. He returned his unconscious Pokémon and looked down at the ball through a thin, tired smile. He tipped his hat and walked out to join David on the field. He extended a massive, weathered hand towards him and David shook it proudly. Clay had a forceful grip, but was proud to have lost to a worthy trainer. He silently drew a badge from his pocket and pinned it on David’s jacket.

    “Congratulations, son, you’ve earned the Quake Badge.” he said. “You did purdy well… f’er a Yankee…” he continued. David chuckled at his remark, looking down at the shiny new badge with pride. David unpinned it and handed it to Paula, resting his gaze on her bright red eyes as she looked it over. Clay turned towards Cheren and wagged his finger, mouthing silently “You’re up” and stepping back towards his side of the field. David and Paula stepped aside as their friend prepared to battle.

    * * *

    “Pachirisu, Hidden Power!” Bianca shouted. The tired and battered Krokorok tried to evade the freezing winds, but Pachirisu filled the cavern with them, finally ending the long battle and securing victory for Bianca. The fearsome crocodile fell in battle, ironically, to the cute little squirrel, marking Clay’s third loss for the day and earning Bianca her very own Quake Badge. As Clay handed over her prize, he began to speak up conversationally.

    “Well, I gotta hand it to you, kids; you three really ain’t half bad.” he mused. “I s’pose you’ll be heading for Chargestone Cave next so ya’ll can get to Mistralton City?” he asked leadingly. Cheren nodded in the affirmative and began to speak.

    “Mistralton City is home to the next Gym Leader. I’d actually like to leave town tonight if it’s still early enough.” he replied. David and Bianca were a bit surprised by the news, but didn’t argue with it; a small frown spread across Clay’s face however and he began to reply.

    “Oh, I’m sure it’s still early ‘nough to make it there ‘fore sundown, but ya’ll can’t leave just yet regardless.” he mused. “There’s a bit of a problem wit’ the cave that ah need to take care of, but ah can’t leave ‘til t’uh’morrow mornin’.” he continued. Cheren grew annoyed at his response, but spoke calmly.

    “Is the problem with Chargestone Cave itself?” he asked. Clay replied in the affirmative and he continued. “I wanted to leave this afternoon because I want to take some time to explore nearby Mistralton Cave. Legend has it that Cobalion retreated into the depths of the cave after the war. Even if it is only a myth, I’d still like to look around. Chargestone itself wasn’t the reason for my haste; it can wait if you aren’t ready.” he continued. David and Bianca maintained their looks of confusion and stared at him to explain.

    “You know? Cobalion?” Cheren said patronizingly. “The leader of the legendary Musketeer trio?” he continued, but David and Bianca still looked perplexed. Cheren sighed and hung his arms. “Have you two really never heard the legend of the Musketeer Trio?” he asked flabbergasted, but they replied that they had not. Hank stepped forward calmly and began to explain.

    “If I might lend my knowledge, the ‘Musketeer Trio’ refers to a group of three Legendary Pokémon who fought against humans long ago. In one of the great wars between Zekrom and Reshiram, a raging forest fire threatened to destroy the homes of a group of innocent Pokémon. The trio battled the flames and fought off human expansion to protect their friends. After the war was over, the trio retreated into the wilderness out of disgust with humanity; they have not been seen since. Some say they are immortal, but if they ever really did exist, chances are that they would be dead.” he explained. “Cobalion was the leader of the group; calm, calculating and commanding with a heart of Steel. He was stern and cold, able to control unruly Pokémon with just a glare. Terrakion provided the muscle, with a stout body and massive horns like shears. Legends say that Terrakion once charged at a thick stone castle and broke through the surrounding wall without a scratch. Virizion was the most effeminate and vain of the trio, but also perhaps the most skilled swordsman. His slender form allowed him to move elegantly and swiftly, slicing at enemies with his razor-sharp horns. Cobalion is said to have chosen Mistralton Cave as his resting place, which is what your friend is referring to…” he continued softly, motioning towards Cheren as he finished. David and Bianca listened with interest through the story, now understanding what Cheren had meant. As Hank finished his story and stepped back, Clay continued to speak.

    “I have business with a lady from out uh town tomorrow, but she ain’t getting’ in ‘til tonight. I’ll be able t’uh meet’cha at the entrance to the cave tomorrow ‘round noon. Ya’ll can do whatever ya please ‘til then.” he said gruffly. Cheren nodded and smiled, turning towards the elevator to head back up. The group left the Lion’s Den behind and headed back out into the sunshine of the outside air. They bade Clay and Hank farewell and started off towards Route 6.

    * * *

    Route 6 was a verdant Garden of Eden, winding through the foothills of the Twist Mountain Range. A pristine river ran through it, generated by snowmelt from the mountains, leading out into the sea near Driftveil. Lush forests surrounded the path, filled with Grass, Bug and Flying type Pokémon. Young Deerling, their coats a rich brown for the autumn season, approached the water’s edge to drink; Basculin and Poliwag swam past them as they took their rest. Foongus stood around the grassy meadows, waiting for passersby to approach them. Tranquill flew through the air in droves, while Swadloon and Karrablast crawled among the low brush. The rare sight of Audino and Emolga could be seen poking their heads out from behind the trees if you looked fast enough, only to pop back into cover once they noticed the wandering eyes. The green and blue oasis seemed to sing with life as the group passed through it on their way to Mistralton Cave; Route 6 was renowned throughout Unova as one of the region’s most beautiful natural routes. Heading north through the wilderness, the group eventually reached a bend in the path which followed the river; the two turned to the west and continued onward to Chargestone Cave, but across the river to the east lay a dark and mysterious cavern. The foreboding landing seemed to call out to them; they approached the river’s edge and began to speak amongst themselves as they looked on at it.

    “So that’s Mistralton Cave…” Cheren murmured. He rested his hand on his chin and looked at the river, trying to find an easy way across. A small landing lay on the other side of the river which led into the cave, but it was surrounded on all sides by trees and boulders. The cave extended into the mountain range behind it, meaning the only way to reach it was by crossing the river directly. Seeing no other alternative, Cheren decided to do just that. He reached down for Aerodactyl’s Pokéball and released him from it.

    “Aerodactyl, can you Fly me over there?” he asked, pointing towards the cave. Aerodactyl screeched and rose into the air, stretching out his leg for Cheren to grab. Cheren took hold and he felt his feet leave the ground as Aerodactyl transported him across the stream. Bianca proceeded to do the same thing with Golbat, and David with Paula Teleporting him across. The group landed before the cave and started heading in.

    The dark cave was poorly illuminated. The sunlight was unable to pierce its depths very effectively, only lighting the first couple of feet. The remainder of the cave was plunged into darkness, seeming to spread on ad infinitum. Bianca wasn’t “scared,” per se, but she shuffled closer to David and took a hold of his hand as they wandered in. Cheren determinedly ventured into the darkness however, unafraid of whatever beast may come his way. Noticing David and Bianca were falling behind, he turned around and began to speak to them.

    “Aren’t you two coming?” he asked indignantly. David wasn’t particularly interested in Cheren’s wild goose chase for Cobalion, and he could sense that Bianca wasn’t terribly keen on exploring the dark, sprawling cave either, so he spoke up in reply.

    “You know, I think we’re just going to hang out here, Cheren.” he started to say. “I’m not really all that interested in this place and I think Bianca would rather stay here too.” he continued. He turned towards her to verify that his assumption was correct, but she confirmed the sentiment and stayed rooted in place with her boyfriend. Cheren shrugged his shoulders and turned away, continuing on into the cave.

    “If I find Cobalion in here, I get all the credit!” he shouted over his shoulder. David laughed at his comment, listening to it echo throughout the cave. David waved his friend off as he strode out of sight, sitting down against a boulder with Bianca. The pair sat facing the entrance to the cave, looking out at the stream as it shimmered in the light. Bianca leaned in close to David and snuggled up next to him. Truth be told, while David wasn’t terribly intrigued by the mysterious cave, he would have gone with Cheren if it had just been the two of them; the prospect of being alone with Bianca in the dark was simply more promising than the alternative however. David smiled as he cuddled up next to her as well, running his fingers through her golden blonde hair. The couple sat happily in silence for several minutes, simply enjoying each other’s company.

    After several minutes of quiet bliss, Bianca sighed and looked up at David. Her shimmering blue eyes shone in the dim light like sapphires, but there was an uneasiness behind her gaze. He smiled at her as she began to speak up.

    “David?” she asked softly. “Are you worried about what N told you back in Nimbasa? I know Cheren said not to take him seriously, but the way you described him, he sounded so passionate and determined… what if he really does reawaken Zekrom?” she continued. David smiled and squeezed her tighter, looking out at the placid stream.

    “Bianca, you worry too much.” he replied calmly. “What makes you think he’s even got a chance? These are the Legendary Dragons we’re talking about here; who even knows if they’re real? N is dangerous to be sure, he proved that when he poisoned me; I think as far as the Dragons go however, that was just him bloviating. We need to continue to defy Plasma, but N personally is nothing to worry about.” he continued. Bianca was unconvinced however, sighing again and gazing out at the river with him.

    I know, I know…” she said. “But still, there’s just something about him that makes me believe him for some reason. Even if you two aren’t the Heroes, I still can’t shake the feeling that you’re going to get hurt in all this. After… what we’ve become… I don’t want to see that happen…” she continued, trailing off. Her voice waved ever so slightly and her eyes were moist. David frowned and looked down at her, watching as her bright blue eyes met his gaze. He cupped his hand around her cheek and spoke calmly.

    “Bianca, listen to me.” he said authoritatively. “You are not going to lose me, understand?” he continued. Bianca shivered as she heard the words, but a small smile began to creep along her lips. Small streams of tears began to run down her face, but David wiped them away. In a tender moment of determination, she leaned up and kissed him softly. The pair sat in ecstasy for what seemed like an eternity, playing at each other’s lips lovingly. Their bodies were still, removing themselves entirely from reality.

    After a long period of blissful embrace in silence, Bianca began to feel something tugging at the base of her skirt. She gently broke their lip-lock and began to whisper.

    “Mmm, a little higher please, David.” she murmured. “We’re not there yet.” she continued. David opened his eyes in confusion though, unsure of what she meant.

    “What?” he asked in mild surprise. He was resting his hands on the small of her back, not moving them and simply enjoying what was within his grasp. Bianca pecked at his lips again playfully and continued to speak.

    “You’re just going a little bit low, babe. Bring it up a notch.” she said softly. David completely removed his hands from Bianca’s back altogether, showing her that whatever she felt wasn’t him.

    “I wasn’t doing anything. What did you feel?” he asked in confusion. A blank expression spread across Bianca’s face as she continued to feel something poking at her butt. She turned around and looked in shock to see what was disturbing her. A small green creature with large tusks stood next to them, curiously poking at her squishy behind. As the creature realized Bianca was looking at it, it turned to look back at her with a grin on its face.

    Axew!” it sneezed. Bianca screamed in delight at its cute response, turning fully to face it.

    Aww!” she shouted. “Hello, cutie! What’s your name?” she continued. David looked over her shoulder at the creature in surprise. It tilted its head towards them, still wearing its confused grin.

    Axew!” it said again, raising its arms playfully into the air. The chipper creature was simply curious about what Bianca was, continuing to poke at her thighs cheerily. Bianca reached down and picked him up, smiling at the cute little dragon happily.

    “Looks like I’ve got some competition.” David said, stifling a laugh. He took the little tike from her, cradling it in his arms for Bianca to see. The tiny dragon looked confused as it changed hands, continuing to stare at Bianca through friendly eyes. “It’s an Axew.” David continued to say. “They’re a Dragon-type species that are indigenous to Unova. I was hoping we might see one…” he explained, trailing off. As he said this, he relaxed his grip; Axew took the initiative and leapt from his grasp, kicking at his chin as it went. David reeled back in surprise at the quick jolt, watching as it landed opposite them. Bianca put a hand to her mouth and gasped at the display, watching as Axew struck up a fighting pose.

    “Ax-ew!” he shouted defiantly, pronouncing each syllable carefully. The little Pokémon stood with one hand raised in the air and another touching the ground, looking up at David expectantly to battle.

    Ow, you little shitass!” he said angrily, holding his chin. Bianca gingerly moved his hand away to look at it, smiling to herself and gently kissing the tiny scratch. She stood up and moved towards the feisty Pokémon, bending down and smiling at it expectantly.

    “You’re quite a little tough guy, aren’t you?” she said patronizingly. The Axew maintained its pose, staring at her determinedly. Bianca giggled and continued to speak. “You want a battle, do you, Axew?” she asked confidently; Axew nodded through a grin. Bianca giggled and raised a Pokéball with which to battle the little dragon. “I want to catch you!” she exclaimed. “If I win, you come with me, deal?” she asked. Axew nodded and prepared for battle. Bianca released Pachirisu from her ball, landing opposite it with a similar grin and bristling with electricity.

    “Pachirisu, Spark!” Bianca shouted. Pachirisu charged the electricity for the attack and lunged towards Axew. Her opponent held firm however, waiting for an opportunity to strike. As Pachirisu drew near, Axew’s tusks began to glow and he swiped at her. He struck once to stop Pachirisu’s charge and struck again to send her flying back. Pachirisu fell to the ground in a slump after sustaining the powerful Dual Chop, but rose undeterred and continuing to bristle with power.

    “Wow! Cute and strong!” Bianca shouted in surprise.

    “That reminds me of someone…” David muttered, looking at her. Bianca flashed him a smile and turned back towards her battle. Axew was beginning to glow with light, contorting and moving rhythmically. Bianca was confused by his movements, but David spoke up in warning.

    “Look out, Bianca, it’s using Dragon Dance!” he said. Bianca gasped at the news, but it was too late. Axew had finished the ancient pattern and took a powerful “stomp!” on the ground. A strong Earthquake attack shot out towards Pachirisu, bolstered by the Dragon Dance. Bianca was quick to react though, issuing her command.

    “Pachirisu, quick! Use Hidden Power before it gets to you!” she shouted. Pachirisu launched off the freezing blast as quickly as she could, but the Earthquake struck her just after. Pachirisu fell to the ground in defeat after the extremely effective Ground-type attack, but her Hidden Power was still charging towards Axew. It struck the Dragon-type powerfully, knocking it to the ground and freezing it. Pachirisu was too tired to continue, but Axew has sustained considerable damage as well, struggling to rise. Bianca wasted no time in trying to catch it; she quickly drew an empty Pokéball and chucked it at the dragon. Axew was just managing to stand, but in his weakened state, the ball struck him on the head and pushed him back to the ground. It zapped him inside and sealed; Bianca held her breath as she waited for the light on the seal to grow dim.

    One shake; Axew was fighting tiredly to break out and continue the fight.

    Two shakes; Axew was nearly hers.

    Three shakes; the ball wiggled for one final time and then… remained still. The light extinguished on the seal as Axew was caught. A thin smile spread across Bianca’s lips as she realized what had happened, walking calmly towards it and picking it up. Bianca released her new Pokémon from its confines and looked at it as it smiled up at her. She picked it up under the arms and embraced it against her ample bosom, finally breaking her calm façade and screaming in joy.

    Yay!” she shouted. “I caught an Axew!” she continued. David grinned and walked up to her, putting a hand on her shoulder in congratulations. Bianca gave him a quick peck on the check in joy and held up her new Pokémon for him to see. Pachirisu rose from her tired stupor and walked up calmly to join in the celebration. Bianca set Axew down on the cave floor again and the new partners greeted each other warmly. David embrace his girlfriend and began to speak.

    “I’m proud of you, Bianca, good job. You, on the other hand…” he started to say, looking towards Axew, “…better not keep trying to make time with my gal.” he continued sarcastically. Axew looked up at him and chuckled, hugging Bianca’s shin happily. “No more poking her butt.” David continued to say. “That’s my job.” he concluded, folding his arms and smiling. Bianca giggled at his comment and kissed him again warmly.

    * * *

    Later that evening as the group sat around their campfire near the entrance to Chargestone Cave, they sat up and talked about the events of the afternoon, watching the smoke drift lazily into the night sky. Axew sat on Bianca’s lap on top of her sleeping bag, looking around at the trees curiously. Cheren began to speak.

    “Well Bianca, this marks an important day for us, not just because you caught a Pokémon, but for the group as a whole.” he said. “You and I both have three Pokémon now, while David only has two. What’s-a-matter, David? Scared of catching Pokémon?” he teased. David shot him a patronizing look however and quipped back.

    “Yeah, I only have two Pokémon, but how many of yours can talk?” he ribbed. “Besides, Paula and Munchlax could beat your sorry-ass Pokémon without even breaking a sweat.” he continued, brushing his hair out of his face. Cheren opened his eyes wide and stifled a laugh.

    “Oh-ho! Is that so?” he said sarcastically. “Well maybe you’d like to put your money where your mouth is!” he continued, drawing a Pokéball. David waved him down though and continued to stare peacefully into the campfire. He looked over at Bianca as the flickering light reflected in her eyes and her golden blonde hair. Her beauty made him smile.

    “It’s too bad you didn’t find anything useful in the cave though, Cheren.” Bianca said sweetly. “At least I got to meet Axew though.” she continued.

    “Yeah, that’s too bad. I didn’t really expect to find much though. Umbreon and I did some training against wild Pokémon, but there was no sign of Cobalion. Oh well…” he responded. “I think I’m going to hit the hay now though.” he continued. He rose with a stretch and began heading down to the river to wash his face and prepare for sleep. David watched him go, not hearing Bianca silently sneaking up behind him.

    “David…” she whispered seductively in his ear. He hadn’t noticed her moving towards him and heard her soft voice right behind him. He felt her warm breath on the back of his neck and turned around to face her. She was in her night clothes which, as he recalled from their first night as Pokémon Trainers back in Professor Juniper’s lab, consisted of nothing more than her bra and panties. A smile spread across his face as he realized how close to hers it was. He ran his fingers through her hair and whispered back.

    “Hi…” he said softly. Bianca laughed and slowly crawled on top of him with Cheren well out of sight. The lovers began to kiss again like they had before, embracing each other before the warmth of the fire.

    “Since Axew interrupted us earlier…” she whispered in explanation. “Thank you for your reassuring words about N earlier. I appreciate it.”

    After a few moments, they heard Cheren coming back to camp and they separated, saying their tender farewells for the night. As the fire died off and his friends fell asleep, David lay in his bag, resting his hands behind his head and thinking. A thin smile played across his face as he thought back on the day’s events; Paula had made great strides towards mastery of Focus Blast, they had all won their fifth Unova region Gym Badges, Bianca had added a new member to her team, and perhaps best of all, their relationship had enjoyed a healthy dose of physical release. David turned his head toward Bianca and watched her as she slept peacefully. They had been the best of friends since a very young age back in Nuvema Town, and there was no doubt that he loved her as such, but as she stirred in her sleep and he looked on at her tender beauty, he couldn’t help but wonder if he was falling in love with her. Maybe they weren’t there yet, he considered, but whatever they called it, he knew it was good. Letting his mind wander peacefully and thinking mischievously to himself about her ample breasts, David breathed in a soothing mixture of the cool autumn night air and the smoke from their dying campfire and fell asleep.
    Last edited by ChaosBlizzard; 25th November 2011 at 7:50 AM.

  13. #88
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    Great chapter I'm really tired so I can't see any mistakes. I like what David says to the axew, lol. And what is BIANCA getting the best Pokemon supposed to mean? I mean...
    Cheren's mons
    Aerodactyl: UU
    Cofagrigus: RU
    Urmbeon: UU
    David's mons
    Gardevoir/kirlia: both NU, lol
    Snorlax: UU
    Soon to come joltik/gavantula: LC and RU, respectively
    Bianca's mons
    Pachurisu: NU
    Crobat: UU
    Axew/fraxure/haxorus: LC, NU and OU, respectively.

    Bianca having the best Pokemon.... SERIOUSLY?!?!!!?!? Aaaaaa!!!! Sorry lol
    Can I be on the pm list?
    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Harvest View Post
    What was that Regarde. I couldn't hear you with all of that dick in your mouth.
    Quote Originally Posted by D-idara View Post
    Well, actually Blaziken isn't really Uber because some people whined about how they were getting owned by it. I mean, it doesn't stand a chance in the Uber enviroment.

    And Reuniclus...i see everyone using him, could you tell me any actual advantages over Musharna?

  14. #89
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    This is win.

    Sorry I haven't posted in a while, but I haven't thought of anything intelligent to say.


    I was wondering why you put certain words in italics. I understand that you want emphasize it, but it seems hiccupy. You could try to make the writing emphasize the word for us, as in we just automatically emphasize it in our minds, because of the way the sentence is written.

    That is, if you're going to take seriously. Or just re-but me with your writing skillz.

    Run-on, derp.

    Axew+ DavidxBianca+ "smart-***" lesson= WIN

    Imma post later with more intellectual post. Pressed for time right now, seeya.


  15. #90
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    I do not get the whole no evolution thing the other fans have. I mean they are already on the sixth gym. That means that the pokemon are at least lvl 36. That means that kirlia should be evo'd. I mean it's about two chapters for every town they go through right? So then evolveing a poke once wcry 2-3 chapters is a good thing. Like I think you should have kirlia evolve soo. That way it makes sense.
    FEAR THE WRATH OF THE MIGHTY WALREIN WHO IS MINE!



    Quote Originally Posted by a person View Post
    Again, N believed he would thrash your ass with his dragon, thus winning the ultimate duel of death and crap between truth and ideals. He had no idea that you would pull your own dragon out of the ass he expected to thrash.

  16. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by mudkips View Post
    And what is BIANCA getting the best Pokemon supposed to mean? I mean...
    Cheren's mons
    Aerodactyl: OU
    Cofagrigus: UU
    Urmbeon: UU
    David's mons
    Gardevoir/kirlia: both BL, lol
    Snorlax: OU
    Soon to come joltik/gavantula: LC and OU, respectively
    Bianca's mons
    Pachurisu: NU
    Crobat: UU
    Axew/fraxure/haxorus: LC, NU and OU, respectively.
    Maybe I'm not quite as up on Smogon's current tiers as I thought I was, but that's what I thought all their respective tiers were.

    Quote Originally Posted by Volt Trainer View Post
    I do not get the whole no evolution thing the other fans have. I mean they are already on the sixth gym. That means that the pokemon are at least lvl 36. That means that kirlia should be evo'd. I mean it's about two chapters for every town they go through right? So then evolveing a poke once wcry 2-3 chapters is a good thing. Like I think you should have kirlia evolve soo. That way it makes sense.
    I have the timing for every remaining evolution already planned out. In no particular order, Paula has to evolve into a Gardevoir, Munchlax has to evolve into a Snorlax, David's soon-to-be-Joltik has to evolve into a Galvantula, Bianca's Golbat has to evolve into a Crobat, Bianca's Axew has to evolve into a Fraxure, and then her Fraxure into a Haxorus. I have all of them planned out as to when they should happen.

        Spoiler:- Possible spoilers:

  17. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by Volt Trainer View Post
    I do not get the whole no evolution thing the other fans have. I mean they are already on the sixth gym. That means that the pokemon are at least lvl 36. That means that kirlia should be evo'd. I mean it's about two chapters for every town they go through right? So then evolveing a poke once wcry 2-3 chapters is a good thing. Like I think you should have kirlia evolve soo. That way it makes sense.
    For moi, I read a story as its own chronology, not so much based on the games timeframe, and we had PKMN evolving every chapter, it felt too rapid-fire for a reader. But that's just me, and the others may be based in different opinions. To each their own!

    Sorry I'm late with this review. This si actually the third iteration, I keep closing/losing the webpage before it posts...

    Axew was kinda, odd. He could prove interesting in upcoming chapters. I'm not familiar with Dual Chop, must be one of the new moves I've never encountered.

    Cobalion seems to be a good way to get rid of Cheren for a while. Dav id ought to remember that, maybe learn the other legendary locations.

    The Ghetsis scene is filled out admirably. Well done there.

    “I caught an Axew!”
    Geisundheit.

    Hank's aninteresting cameo but that was another show I never cared for, so I'm gonna say ugh and move on

    And the Sand Rush bit. That, was a classic one. I'm in love with that.
    She didn’t have to worry about controlling this one however; she fell to her knees and simply dropped the bundle of energy into the hole.
    BOMB'S AWAY!!! Seriously, I wish there was a way to treat Dig like this in the games.

    While she was far from mastering the wild attack, she had made great strides in utilizing the raw power of Focus Blast; this would be a day to remember.
    I think I'll need to call her "Teddy Roosevelt." You know, speak softly, carry BIG HONKIN' BOOM STICK.

    Prediction: Galvantula web over door---> David's Joltik.

    And what's with the distracting links mid-story?
        Spoiler:- Breeding stuff:

  18. #93
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    This is AWESOME.

    The charecters are fantastic, and the story is proggresing at a steady rate.
    Lennon and McCarty are flipping funny to.
    Can't wait for the next chapter.
    My Pokemon

    BlitzBreaker Stryker Micheal Zack Alex Brett :26:







  19. #94
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        Spoiler:- Author's Notes:


    Chronicles of Unova

    Chapter 15: The Test
    Part 1 of 2

    Disturbed by a loud “clang!” sound, Bianca gently fluttered her eyes open and awoke from sleep. She sat up in her bag and looked at where the noise had come from; David and Cheren were standing around their campfire, trying to hang a metal pot over it from an impromptu stand. The pot had fallen, spilling water on the ground and causing the fire to sizzle. Realizing she was awake, they turned their attention away from the mess and spoke to her.

    “Oh, crap, did we wake you up, Bianca?” Cheren asked worriedly.

    “Yeah…” she replied. “…but it looks like I slept in anyway.” she continued, looking up at the late morning sun. David and Cheren were already dressed and preparing their breakfast; Cheren picked up the pot and brushed off the dirt, jogging down to the river to fetch more water. David sat down at the edge of the fire and smiled at her as he waited for Cheren to return.

    “So what’re we having?” she asked, giggling at the boys’ attempts at cooking.

    “Those grits we bought at the Driftveil Market a few days ago.” David replied, lifting up the bag of grain. Cheren returned with the water and they continued their attempt at making an impromptu stove. After a few minutes, the pot was boiling away. The group released their Pokémon and sat around the campfire chatting.

    “So why is it called Chargestone Cave, Cheren?” Bianca asked as she waited for him to serve her.

    “The cave has a special magnetic property that causes the rocks in it to levitate.” he replied. “It’s theorized to have some connection to Mt. Coronet in Sinnoh. You can actually see electricity crackling around the cave and shooting between the rocks, so I’ve heard.” he continued. “It naturally draws Electric and Steel type Pokémon to it.” He took the ladle as he said this and spooned out some of the damp grain into Bianca’s bowl; she turned and sat down next to David.

    “Flying rocks and electricity shooting through the air sounds safe.” David muttered as she sat. She stifled a laugh and took a spoonful of her breakfast out of her bowl. She put the whole spoon in her mouth at once, smiling as she tried the new food, but it was quickly replaced by a blank stare.

    “What do you think, Bianca?” Cheren asked. “Is it good?”

    Bianca slowly pulled the spoon out of her mouth and set it down in her bowl. She painstakingly swallowed the hot substance, grinning back at him.

    “Oh, uh… yeah.” she struggled to say. “Really, um… what did you say this was called again?” she continued.

    “Grits.” David replied quietly, taking a spoonful of his own. “It’s a very traditional breakfast for farm hands and wandering adventurers like us. I’ve always really liked them.” he continued. Bianca struggled to take another bite, but was obviously pained. David smiled and reached into his bag.

    “Psst, here.” he whispered, handing her something. “They taste a lot better if you put a pad of butter in them.” he continued, discreetly handing her a partially opened stick. “Don’t tell Cheren, but he makes ‘em kind of bland.” he continued to whisper. Bianca stifled a laugh and let the butter melt over the hot grain. She laid her hand over top of his, smiling back at him and mouthing “thank you.” David nodded and turned to look at Paula who was seated next to him on the other side. She didn’t seem to have the same problem with her breakfast that Bianca was having, devouring the contents of her bowl ravenously. David smirked as he watched her eat.

    “Gee Paula, are you hungry?” he asked sarcastically. She finished her last few bites and looked up at him with a quizzical look.

    “A little.” she replied, wiping her mouth with the back of her hand. “Why do you ask?”

    “You looked liked you would have eaten the whole bowl if I hadn’t said anything!” he replied with a chuckle. “Do you want some more?” he continued.

    “Well, if you are offering, master.” she replied, handing him her bowl. “I do not know why, I just feel very hungry this morning. I do not feel any weaker than normal, but I somehow feel as if I woke up at less than my maximum strength. Does that make any sense?” she asked. David spooned the rest of the grits into her bowl and handed it back to her.

    “Yeah, kind of.” he replied. “Maybe you’re just close to leveling up and you just need to build up your strength.” he continued. Paula again dove into her food, swallowing it very quickly. In a matter of only around 10 seconds, she was already finished.

    “I hope whatever it is passes quickly.” she started to say. “I feel unladylike eating so quickly- HIC!” she continued. A blank look of confusion spread across her face as she interrupted herself. “Oh- HIC! no… HIC!” she continued.

    “Haha, have you got the hiccups?” David asked, stifling another laugh. Paula bounced in her seat with each spasm, unable to hold her small body down through the jolts. She crossed her arms and frowned.

    “I do not- HIC! have the stupid- HIC! hiccups- HIC!” she muttered angrily. “I am a- HIC! lady, and proper Victorian- HIC! ladies do not get- HIC! the hiccups- HIC!” she continued. “Aaargh- HIC!” she shouted in flustered anger, but she continued to interrupt herself. David was beside himself with laughter at her predicament, but she shot him a piercing glare.

    “That’s what you get for eating so fast!” he stammered through his laughter. Paula looked like she could have shot laser beam from her eyes with her angry stare, but it was hard to take her seriously as she bounced in her seat like a child. David put his arm around her shoulders both to support himself and to try and hold her down, but she continued to pout.

    “I do not- HIC! have the hiccups- HIC! I do not- HIC! have the hiccups- HIC! I do not- HIC! have the hiccups- HIC!” she pouted. David wiped his eyes and sat back up.

    “Come on, let’s go take care of those.” he said, still chuckling. He took her hand and led her down to the river with a plastic cup. He collected some water and handed it to her.

    “Hold your breath and drink this.” he explained. Paula was still pouting but did as he suggested. She took in a big breath of air and began to drink the water. She appeared cured after the first few seconds, but just as she let her guard down, another massive hiccup came and startled her. She flailed her arms in shock, splashing the water all over her face and body. David had to bite his lips to keep from laughing.

    “MMMPH!” she shouted, throwing the cup to the ground. “I HAVE- HIC! HAD IT WITH THESE- HIC! STUPID HICCUPS- HIC!” she continued. In an instant of determination, she threw her arms to her sides and exploded in a bright bundle of light. Her eyes completely glazed over, glowing like the sun in a brilliant blue color. Her body looked as if it was encased in flames and her hair flew wildly. She levitated off of the ground as she cracked with psychic power. David was taken aback by the display, startled at her sudden outburst of strength. Paula ominously opened her mouth as wide as it could go, continuing to concentrate and burn with energy. Slowly, her face contorted and a tiny bundle of grains floated out of her throat. She closed her mouth again and “stared” at the offending particle through her glazed over eyes. It began to shake in midair before shattering dramatically into a thousand pieces. Paula calmed herself and fell back to the ground with a scowl on her face. She straightened her hair and looked up at David as if nothing had happened.

    “Well then, glad we took care of that, master…” she said with a heavy sigh. David wore a confused and nervous look on his face, looking at her worriedly.

    “Hey uh… Paula?” he started. “Remind me never to make you mad…” he continued. Paula grinned slyly and took his hand.

    “Don’t worry, master, I would never hurt you.” she replied, blushing. “I just cannot stand the hiccups, that is all.” she continued with a very girly giggle. She started walking back to the campfire, tugging at his arm as she went. David followed after her, but was still startled by her extraordinary and sudden outburst of psychic power. She was truly becoming a phenomenally powerful Pokémon; perhaps this outburst was foreshadowing of things to come.

    * * *

    After finishing their morning activities, the group started off for Chargestone Cave. They reached the cave in short time, but found something blocking the entrance.

    “What is all this?” David asked in surprise. The entrance to the cave was covered in a web of thin yellow fibers. They stretched across the entirety of the opening in the rock wall, blocking off any way in. The pattern looked like a spider’s web, but seemed different somehow. It certainly wasn’t made by a regular spider, whatever it was.

    “I don’t know…” Cheren said in a mystified voice. “I’m stumped…” he continued, shrugging his shoulders.

    “Should we just try and go in past it?” David replied.

    “Ha!” Cheren said in shock. “I’m not touching that mess. You want to, go ahead and be my guest…” he continued, stepping back. David shot him an angry look and moved towards it.

    “Fine. I gotta do everything around here anyways…” he muttered. David stretched out his hand and tried to brush away the fibers, but was instantly met with resistance. He felt a strong current run through his arm, searing with pain. His muscles tensed up and he couldn’t let go. Cheren and Bianca had to pull him away to stop the spasm.

    “I hate to say ‘I told you so,’ but… wait, who am I kidding? I told you so, I told you so!” Cheren quipped, laughing. David’s arm was still very tense and rigid; he smacked Cheren behind the head with his taut arm, knocking him to the ground in a heap of dirt. Bianca giggled as Cheren struggled to rise.

    “Okay Cheren, well what do you suggest we do?” David asked angrily. Cheren stood up and held the back of his head, wincing.

    “This is probably what Clay was warning us about, smartass. We should wait for him to-” Cheren started to say, but he was cut off by a noise from behind him.

    “You hoo! David! Bianca! Cheren! Hi there! How are you doing?” came a soothing, excited female voice from down the path. Walking into sight with her hand outstretched above her head was the trim, well-dressed sight of Professor Juniper. She wore a very short business skirt and her bleached white lab coat. Walking behind her calmly was Clay, his arms folded stoically.

    “Professor Juniper?” Bianca asked in surprise. “What are you doing here?”

    “I’m here to do some field research.” she replied as she walked up. “I hired Clay here to escort me to Chargestone Cave safely. I just arrived in town last night.” she continued. Clay strode up behind her, tipping his hat to them as he arrived.

    “Ya’ll ‘member that b’iddness ah had to atten’ to ‘fore I could come’un help you kids?” he asked. “Well… meet b’iddness…” he continued.

    “So what seems to be the problem with the cave, Clay?” Professor Juniper asked, putting a hand to her cheek. Clay tipped his hat and drew a Pokéball as he approached the entrance. He scratched his chin and inspected the fibers carefully.

    “Ah-yep… just like ah fig’gured…” he muttered. “See this web here? This nest was created by a Pokémon called Galvantula. Ah gotta clear it ‘fore ya’ll can go in.” he continued. He released his Krokorok from its Pokéball and proceeded to give it a command.

    “Krokorok, use Bulldoze!” he shouted. Krokorok stomped on the ground and sent a tremor towards the web. The crackling yellow fibers burst as they discharged their electricity and then fell to the ground, disintegrating as they reached the dirt. Krokorok folded his arms coolly and turned back towards his trainer.

    “Good job, Krok. Return.” Clay growled proudly. He recalled his Pokémon and turned back towards the group, tipping his hat.

    “All taken care of, ladies. Have a safe trip.” he said, motioning to Bianca and Professor Juniper. He started to walk off, but Bianca shouted after him.

    “Hey! Wait! Clay, what did you say made that nest again?” she asked timidly. Clay turned to face her with a stern look in his eyes.

    “It’s a Pokémon called Galvantula.” he said ominously. “They’re an Electric/Bug type what live ‘round here. They’re massive spider Pokémon with furry bodies an’ beady li’l blue eyes. They’re each the size of a person, with long feelers an’ giant fangs. They shoot a web charged with electricity and hunt in packs. They slowly trap their prey and then move in for the kill, eating them while they’re still alive. They-” he tried to continue, but Professor Juniper cut him off.

    “Clay, stop it, you’re scaring the poor girl!” she shouted. Bianca was shivering with a horrified look on her face. She turned in surprise towards Professor Juniper however and started to protest.

    “I’m n-n-n-not s-s-s-scared!” she stammered. “I j-j-j-just d-d-d-don’t like s-s-s-spiders…” she said. She moved closer to David subconsciously however and grasped his hand tightly.

    “Bianca, don’t worry, most of that is just urban legend. I have studied Pokémon my whole life and there is no scientific evidence that Galvantula torture their prey before eating it. And they certainly are not as big as a person, they’re around two-and-a-half feet tall.” Professor Juniper said soothingly. Clay coughed loudly though and folded his arms.

    “Yeah, sure they ain’t…” he muttered. “I’ve lived in Driftveil for the last 25 years, and ah know Galvantula hunt like that. Why’d’ya think the city council likes havin’ a strong Ground-type trainer ‘round here?” he continued. Professor Juniper shot him a disapproving glare, but he tipped his hat and walked off.

    “Don’t say ah didn’t warn ya. Afternoon, ladies…” he said dismissively as he went.

    “Don’t worry, Bianca, I’ll protect you.” David whispered. Bianca smiled and looked at him, still gripping his hand, relaxing her stance a bit and turning back towards the cave. The group began to enter the dim cave and looked around as their eyes adjusted to the light.

    * * *

    The inside of the cave was a beautiful sight to behold. Just as Cheren had described, streams of electricity bristled around the floor and between the rocks, playing at their feet with each step. Many of the rocks floated in the air, anywhere in size from pebbles to massive stone obelisks. Electricity charged between them, illuminating both the rocks and the cave in a neon blue light. The cave felt almost like a Nimbasa nightclub due to the strange lights, and the whole area buzzed like the sound from fluorescent lighting. After the initial shock of the beauty of the cave wore off, Cheren spoke up to Professor Juniper conversationally.

    “So Professor…” he started to say. “What exactly brings you to the cave? What are you researching?” he continued. A grin spread across the professor’s lips and she raised her index finger into the air.

    “Are you kids familiar with the Pokémon Klink?” she asked.

    “Yeah! David and I battled a Klang on the Battle Subway; that’s the evolved form, right?” Bianca asked with genuine interest. Professor Juniper chuckled at her enthusiasm.

    “That’s right, Bianca, it is. Klink is a very unique species of Pokémon. The Klink-Klang-Klinklang evolutionary line is a fully defined series of Pokémon. They are living creatures and appear to possess the same traits as any other Pokémon, such as being able to control the elements or survive powerful attacks, but curiously, no record of them exists anywhere in the world dating back farther than 100 years. Records of Chargestone Cave and its strange electromagnetic properties are documented from farther back than that, as are records of Steel types, but it is almost as if Klink and their evolutions just suddenly appeared out of thin air 100 years ago.” she explained. “I came here and try to catch a Klink so I could study it. Hopefully I can uncover some of the secrets of their creation; the first man-made Pokémon is widely believed to be the Porygon evolutionary line, but perhaps that title actually belongs to Klink.” she continued. She reached into her coat pocket and pulled out a few Pokéballs. “I can’t wait to catch one so I can learn more.” she murmured softly.

    The group continued on their way silently and uneventfully for a short distance, but eventually reached a dead-end. A natural ramp led farther into the cave down to a lower level; there appeared to be no alternate path they could take besides descending into the cave’s lower tiers, so they continued on towards it. As they neared the ramp however, the magnetically charged rocks and crystals lighting the cave in the electric blue light dimmed and flickered for a moment. A chilling breeze blew through the cave, even though they were very deep inside. The group looked around in surprise at the disturbance, but saw nothing. They collectively shrugged and continued towards the ramp, but were startled by a sight forming before them. Three dark pools of shadows were slowly bubbling up out of the ground before them, growing in size. They seemed to radiate with darkness and swirled like whirlpools, sucking light out of the already relatively dim cave. Three masked men slowly began to ascend out of the vortexes, standing like statues as they rose. The sight startled and scared the group of travelers, unsure exactly how to react. When the men reached the top of their portals, they closed below them. The men all looked the same, with black masks obscuring their faces and shoulder-length bleached white hair. They stood like hunchback statues and wore form-fitting black clothes. They stared vacantly from behind glazed white eyes, unmoving and silent.

    “Who… who are-” David started to stammer, but they cut him off.

    Silence.” they murmured in unison. David froze in terror, obeying the command. After several more second of awkward and suspense silence, one of them spoke up.

    “Who is the one they call ‘David?’” the right one said. He spoke slowly and ominously, and his voice sounded almost other-worldly. David nervously stammered in reply.

    “I… I am.” he said, trying to restrain his alarmed voice.

    “Good. Then you are the one Lord N wanted.” the man on the left said. They remained silent for a moment, just long enough for David to attempt his question again.

    “Who… who are you people?” he asked, swallowing his nervousness momentarily. The man in the middle took a step forward, still holding his position rigidly.

    “We are the Shadow Triad.” he responded carefully. “We come with a message from Lord N of Team Plasma for the Hero of Truth. We-” he tried to continue, but Cheren cut him off.

    “Wait! The Shadow Triad?!” he shouted in surprise. “Like Giratina’s Shadow Triad?!” he continued. The man he had interrupted slowly nodded his head a single time, still rigidly holding the rest of his body still. “What is Team Plasma doing getting involved with Giratina?!” Cheren asked in shock.

    “We are dark, trans-dimensional assassins; the evil actors of an ancient deity. We do not need to explain ourselves to you.” the man on the right said sternly.

    “All will be explained in due time, human. Now hear our message.” his partner on the left continued. The group remained silent as the man in the middle again began to speak.

    “We of the Shadow Triad are the dark assassins of Lord Giratina, hallowed by His evil name. Our Lord and Ghetsis of Team Plasma have an agreement of mutual benefit to both parties; we come on behalf of Team Plasma to deliver a message from Lord N to the Hero of Truth.” he started to say. “For the prophecy of Unova to be realized, a Hero of Truth must stand with Reshiram once more to oppose the Hero of Ideals and Zekrom; Lord N believes that warrior to be you, as he indicated to you in Nimbasa City. Team Plasma will be testing you in this cave to determine if you truly are such a Hero. We warn you however: Team Plasma’s test will prove to be your greatest hurdle yet. Do NOT take this lightly.” he continued ominously.

    “What do you mean by ‘test me?’” David asked in surprise; the man on the right spoke up for a third time.

    “You will find out in due time.” he replied.

    “If you truly are the Hero of Truth as Lord N suspects, then passing this test should prove to be no challenge to you.” the man on the left said, continuing his partner’s thought. The man in the center took a step back to rejoin his comrades and began to speak for a final time; aside from those two steps, they hadn’t moved an inch since they had appeared, not even when speaking.

    “We will take our leave now, Pokémon trainers; we come only as messengers to relay Lord N’s intent. However, before we depart, we have been instructed to impart a second message on a more personal note for the one called ‘Cheren.’” he said carefully. Cheren gulped as he heard his name and stepped forward to receive the message. “We have been instructed to relay the following dispatch: Tell Gustavo that Giratina sends his regards. He should enjoy this small taste of freedom, for soon he shall never savor it again.” he continued. As he spoke the final words, the space around the trio distorted and they vanished like static disappearing from a television screen. As they disappeared, the lights around the cave again flickered, humming back to life brighter now than before. As quickly as they had appeared, they had imparted their message and vanished; David didn’t know what kind of “test” N had cooked up for him, but he knew it couldn’t be good.

    “Alright…” Professor Juniper started to say softly, pinching the bridge of her nose. “Someone is going to have to tell me just what the Hell just happened.” she continued. The group proceeded to explain about their time in Relic Castle as they ventured farther into the cave.

    * * *

    Clean cut, recently bathed and at full strength, Lennon and McCartney took point for their small task force in brand new, spiffy uniforms. Their swords were polished and their new uniforms were still crisp from the packaging. For the first time in what seemed like an eternity, they were actually smiling while they were doing their work. They stood at a bend in the path near the northern exit to the cave, waiting to alert the rest of their comrades when the traveling band of adventurers came in sight. Flanking either side of the path behind two large stone monoliths, the pair stared hawk-eyed down the path for any sign of movement. Lennon spoke up conversationally.

    “Finally livin’ the dream, huh, McCartney?” he said with a smile, flicking his eyes away from the path and towards his partner for a brief instant. McCartney grinned back slyly but stayed on task. “Working with Lord N directly, not having to deal with all the bureaucratic bullshit, finally just getting to free the innocent Pokémon like we should be doing… I don’t know how we got so lucky, but man is this great.” he continued. McCartney continued to grin and sighed.

    “I can tell you how it happened, Lennon; we managed to run into Lord N and impress him. That day back in Nimbasa was our second turning point. If it weren’t for him, we would still be on the outs with Plasma. That guy’s a saint.” McCartney replied.

    “Amen to that.” Lennon said through a chuckle. “Seems like he’s the only one in this organization with his head screwed on right. This whole new task force is like that; seems like Lord N managed to find all the best and brightest in the organization and get them away from all the stupidity of the front lines. This is going to be a great new assignment for us, McCartney; I can’t wait to see what he has in store.” he continued.

    “So uh… speaking of that… do you know what it is we’re supposed to do once we see them?” McCartney asked in a confused voice. “I mean, I know we go back and alert the others, but then what?” he continued.

    “Lord N said something about a ‘test’ for them. I don’t really know what he thinks that’ll entail.” Lennon replied, scratching the back of his head. “I’m just glad we get to see that little shitass Pokémon trainer and his bimbo girlfriend again. I owe him a little payback…” he continued maliciously. He rubbed his hands together and smirked a Cheshire grin. McCartney stifled a laugh also and continued to stare down the path.

    “Well, I’m sure Lord N knows what he’s doing. He was- hey, wait! Shh! Listen!” McCartney stammered, bringing a gloved finger to his lips. “Did’ja hear that?!” he whispered. The sounds of a scuffle were coming from a little deeper in the cave. The pair both gripped the hilts of their swords and unsheathed them slightly. They hunched down behind their cover and continued to hawk-eye the path.

    “I think it’s almost show time…” Lennon whispered. The pair grinned to themselves and chuckled under their breath. Team Plasma was nearly ready to spring their trap.

    * * *

    “So then I said, ‘Grimer?! I ‘ardly know’er!’” Professor Juniper exclaimed. The whole group laughed heartily at her joke; they had gone a fairly long distance through the cave since their meeting with the Shadow Triad, and were starting to head back up through the cave now instead of descending. Strangely, they had seen almost no other living creatures however. David began to speak through his laughter.

    “That’s a good one, Professor.” he said as he calmed himself. “You know, it’s strange… Team Plasma was supposed to be ‘testing me’ in here and it was going to be this whole big thing, but here we are cracking jokes like there’s nothing happening. Where do you suppose they are?” he asked. Professor Juniper and Bianca both shrugged, but Cheren spoke up in response.

    “I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but we haven’t really seen any wild Pokémon either. It’s almost as if they’re hiding or something.” he suggested. “Maybe Team Plasma really is here somewhere and the two are correlated.” he continued.

    “I certainly hope not.” Professor Juniper chimed in. “I need to find a- KLINK!” she started to say, but she was cut off by a loud metallic sound. “Um… well yes, that too…” she continued. The group stopped for a moment and looked around to try and find where the sound had come from. They heard it again from a little farther down the path and headed quickly towards it.

    In a portion of the cave that was down and away from the path, a pair of young Pokémon were playing amongst the rocks. They were oblivious to the passing travelers and to the mysterious forces of Team Plasma preparing their ambush deeper in the cave. One of the Pokémon was a healthy young Klink, playing tag with the other Pokémon and occasionally bumping into rocks with his metallic body which made the sound. The other Pokémon they didn’t recognize however; it was very small and appeared to be almost nothing more than a little ball of yellow fuzz. It moved at extremely fast speeds however, jittering around the trench and dodging its friend. The group looked over the edge of the path at the Pokémon in silence as so to not disturb them.

    “Well, we’ve found your Klink, Professor…” Cheren murmured. While David, Cheren and Professor Juniper were taking notice of the whole spectacle however, Bianca stared fixedly at the little yellow Pokémon. She whispered softly

    “What is that?” she asked in a mystified voice. Professor Juniper smiled at her and replied.

    “It’s called a Joltik, Bianca.” she cooed soothingly. “They are-” she started to continue, but Bianca cut her off.

    “Oh. My. GOOOSH!” she squealed. “It’s soooo cuuuuute, David, you have to catch it!!” she continued. She grasped his arm and stood up quickly, pulling him with her. David shot Professor Juniper a quizzical look and shrugged at her as he rose; Cheren and Professor Juniper flashed each other a smirk and stood up with them.

    Catch it catch it catch it catch it!” Bianca squealed as she bounced on her heels in place. David grinned and rubbed the back of his head, turning to Professor Juniper with a slightly forced smile.

    “What do you say, Professor? Feel like a Double Battle with me?” he asked. The Professor grinned slyly back at him and drew a Pokéball. Bianca squealed with joy as the group proceeded down the incline towards the Pokémon.

    The Klink and Joltik had been oblivious to them as they played their game, but took notice as they saw them jogging down the incline towards them. The Joltik was the first to notice, hunching down close to the ground and growling to fend them off. It wore a tiny scowl on its face and jittered in place with built up energy. The Klink noticed its friend’s change in mood and turned to face the new threat as well. The pair stood defiantly next to each other as they sized up the potential danger.

    Hiiii cutieeees!” Bianca squealed as she ran up with her friends. The incline was just a tad too steep however and was littered with small, loose rocks. Bianca lost her footing, tripping on one of the stones, and started flailing her arms to try and regain her balance as she ran towards them. Thinking she was trying to attack them, Joltik sprang into action to defend itself and his friend. The Pokémon leapt towards her, hissing menacingly. Bianca shrieked and covered her face with her arms instinctively. Joltik narrowly missed, flying over her shoulder behind her. Now that they were agitated and ready to fight, David and Professor Juniper prepared their Pokémon for battle.

    “Go, Munchlax!” David shouted, releasing his Pokémon.

    “Cinccino, assistance please!” she shouted in a very business-like manner. The ornate, showy form of the Cinccino landed alongside Munchlax and began to straighten and comb its fur before staring down the Klink. It was extremely well-kept and polite-looking, but wore a confident smile that belied its true strength. Seeing no other option, the Klink and Joltik sprang into action to defend themselves.

    The Joltik moved first, throwing itself at Munchlax with tremendous speed. It grabbed for Munchlax’s face and held on tight. Munchlax flailed in shock and tried to pull it off, but the little Bug was unrelenting. Joltik began to charge with electricity and spat a web at Munchlax from extremely close range as it jumped off. The silk bound Munchlax and knocked him to the ground, zapping him with the strong current as well. Munchlax struggled to break free, but was flailing. David called for him to use Fire Punch to burn it off like they had done at the Castelia Gym, but even after he was free, Joltik’s Electroweb attack had done a sizable amount of damage; they were off to a bad start. Before Munchlax could even shake off the disorientation, Joltik was already charging up energy for his next attack.

    Professor Juniper was having an easier time with the Klink. It zipped through the air as it spun, trying to clip Cinccino with Gear Grind. Cinccino was too fast for it however and leapt out of the way with ease, waiting patiently for a chance to strike. After several failed attempts, Klink slipped up and gave Cinccino that chance; Cinccino struck at it with its lavish tail as it passed, striking it back and forth several times with a powerful Wake-up Slap. The Fighting-type attack did tremendous damage to the Steel-type foe, knocking it to the ground in near-defeat. Klink struggled to rise, but Cinccino held it down.

    Joltik was building up a bundle of green energy before it. It launched the blast at Munchlax just as he shook off the disorientation from the Electroweb attack. Joltik’s Energy Ball flew towards Munchlax at a high speed, but Munchlax’s fists were still enflamed from the Fire Punch. He met the ball head-on and punched it out of the air; the Grass-type attack couldn’t stand up to the fire and dissipated before it could do any damage to Munchlax. Munchlax was mad now and began to charge towards the Joltik. He threw a powerful Fire Punch towards it, but it zipped away before Munchlax could strike. Munchlax continued to flail powerfully at the Joltik, but it was much too fast for him. Munchlax managed to get in a lucky strike and clipped it, knocking it to the ground in shock. Joltik tried to shake off the disorientation, but David refused to let his opportunity pass him by. With both Pokémon partially incapacitated, David and Professor Juniper each drew their empty Pokéballs and threw them towards the target Pokémon. Klink and Joltik were both zapped inside and struggled to break free.

    The Pokéballs shook out of rhythm with each other as the Pokémon inside tried to break out; it was to no avail however. The Professor’s ball was the first to stop as Klink gave up the fight; Joltik continued to struggle, shaking the ball wildly, but it too eventually ran out of strength. The seals grew dim as they latched, waiting for the trainers to go and collect them. David and Professor Juniper each picked up their respective Pokéballs in unison, grinning to each other confidently.

    Yay!” Bianca shouted, running up from the sidelines to hug David. “Joltik is such a cutie-pie. I’m so glad you caught him!” she continued. Cheren scoffed and folded his arms with a smirk.

    “You know, David, I think that’s why you caught Munchlax too, if I remember right. Bianca thought he was ‘cute’ and told you to catch him. Can you say ‘whipped?’” he said sarcastically. David started to protest but Cheren cut him off. “And Bianca, you know how you think Joltik is ‘cute?’” he asked. Bianca pursed her lips nodded. “Well remember that Pokémon Galvantula Clay was telling us about? Guess what they evolve from…” he continued. Bianca put her index finger against her lips as she put two and two together. A blank, horrified look spread across her face as she realized.

    Che-ren!” she said angrily. “Why didn’t you warn me?!” she pouted. Cheren just laughed and started heading off towards the path. Bianca stamped her foot and folded her arms, pouting, but David rested his arm around her shoulders.

    “Don’t worry, sweetie, I don’t have to evolve him right away.” he whispered. Bianca sighed and started heading off after Cheren. David chuckled and looked down at his new Pokémon’s Pokéball. He and Professor Juniper followed after her as they continued to venture on throughout the cave.

    * * *

    [Continued Below]

  20. #95
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    Chronicles of Unova

    Chapter 15: The Test
    Part 2 of 2

    It had been several minutes since McCartney had heard the noise. They continued to focus intently on the bottleneck David and his friends would have to be passing through, but didn’t see or hear anything else. After a while, Lennon relaxed his stance.

    “Hmm…” he muttered. “Maybe it was nothing…” he continued. As he said this though, McCartney noticed movement coming from around the bend.

    “No, wait, here they come!” he whispered. “Come on! Let’s go tell the others.” he continued. The pair nodded at each other and retreated back towards the ambush. Near the exit to the cave, N and a group of other recently promoted Plasma operatives were mulling around, waiting for their signal.

    “Ahh, Special Agents Lennon and McCartney.” N said magnanimously as they ran up. “You have spotted David and his friends I take it?” he continued. Lennon and McCartney struggled to catch their breath but nodded.

    “Yes, my Lord.” Lennon wheezed. “They are… just around the bend…” he continued. N smiled to himself and closed his eyes.

    “Alright, everyone, here is the plan…” he said ominously. After N had explained the mission to the agents, they began to move silently and quickly into position as they waiting to spring their trap. Farther down the road, David and the rest of the group were nearing Lennon and McCartney’s old hiding place, unaware of the danger that lay ahead.

    “Well guys, I think I can see light up ahead…” David murmured. “Guess Plasma’s full of shit after all…” he continued.

    “It doesn’t make sense.” Cheren commented. “Why would the Shadow Triad go to all the trouble of scaring us like that if they didn’t mean it.” he continued. “I don’t know about you guys, but I think that-” he started to say, but he left his sentence dangling as they rounded the final corner. “Oh shit…” he muttered.

    A large group of Plasma agents stood defiantly, blocking their path. They all wore angry scowls and smirks with their arms folded. They stood in two rows of four, with Lennon and McCartney standing at the front of the pack, grinning maliciously.

    ‘ello, poppit…” Lennon sneered slowly in a fake English accent. David instinctively reached for a Pokéball to defend himself, but stopped when he saw the crowd start to divide. N shuffled slowly through them before stopping at the head of the group. He still had his arms folded and his eyes shut. He opened them slowly, staring with an eerie smile towards David.

    “Well well, David… we meet again…” he said calmly. David grit his teeth and finished pulling out Munchlax’s Pokéball. He shot N a piercing glare and took a step forward.

    “Your lackeys told us you’d be here.” he scoffed. “We didn’t think you’d actually show up.” he continued. N chuckled to himself however and spread his arms.

    “Oh come now, David, don’t be like that.” he said sweetly. “I like to think of you as a friend, not an enemy. Why all the hostility?” he continued. David opened his eyes wide in surprise and stood up straighter.

    “‘Why the hostility?!’” he said in shock. “Uh… maybe because you poisoned me!” he continued. “You’re the head of Team Plasma! You want to destroy the Unova region! There’s a goddamn legion of armed guards standing behind you? Need I go on?!” he shouted. N continued to chuckle.

    “Oh David, please don’t be mad at me.” he said with a smile. “I want for us to be friends. I never had any human friends growing up. I respect and admire you, David, even if we do have to be foes temporarily.” he continued. N nodded his head and wore a stern, confident grin. “I want to fulfill the prophecy and reawaken Zekrom to realize my ideals. In order to do that, a Hero of Truth must stand with Reshiram to oppose me. I know in my heart that Hero is you, but we need to be certain first. I just need to give you a little test. Once Zekrom and I have freed all of the Pokémon, we can be best friends, but first I need to know you really are the Hero; agents, begin.” he said ominously. The wave of Plasma grunts moved towards him in unison, each drawing a single Pokéball. David released Munchlax in a panic, preparing for battle.

    “Come on, we have to help him!” Bianca shouted. She and Cheren began to draw their own Pokéballs to help fend off the onslaught, but were quickly stopped. The Shadow Triad materialized before them, grabbing each of them by the arms and forcibly holding them down.

    “Tsk, tsk…” the one holding Bianca muttered.

    “You won’t be helping anyone.” the one holding Professor Juniper continued.

    “Lord N has instructed us to keep anyone and everyone but the Hero of Truth from interfering.” the one holding Cheren explained. It would be up to David to win the fight alone.

    Munchlax sprang from the Pokéball to defend against the first Plasma Agent, but before his opponent could release his own Pokémon, Joltik sprang from his Pokéball of his own accord. He bristled with power and was raring to fight, but he was still obviously pained from his earlier battle. David was impressed by the Bug’s vivacity, but had to hold him back. David released Paula from her Pokéball as well and began to speak to her.

    “Paula, can you use Heal Pulse on Joltik?” he asked. “I think I’m going to need all three of you by the time this is over, and I need him at top condition.” he continued. Paula nodded silently and determinedly, understanding the gravity of the situation and doing as she was told without argument. David turned back towards the impending battle as his first opponent released a Pokémon.

    [Author’s Note: For an enhanced experience, listen to this during the next few paragraphs.]

    “Duosion, come out!” the agent commanded. The amorphous bundle of gel and plasma floated through the air with a blank expression. David was quick to react however and called for Munchlax to use Crunch. Before his opponent could even react, Munchlax had taken a powerful bite out of him. The Duosion squirmed in pain and tried to break free, but Munchlax’s Dark-type attack had done a tremendous amount of damage to his Psychic foe. Duosion tried to focus enough to summon a Psyshock attack, but Munchlax was continuing to inflict pain. The tiny bundles of psychic energy bombarded Munchlax, but he held fast. Duosion finally had to give in to the pain as Munchlax defeated him.

    “One down…” the defeated operative muttered.

    A million more to go!” shouted one of his comrades, stepping forward with a sinister laugh. The man had already released his Pokémon, a scrappy, virile Scraggy, and launched a sneak attack at Munchlax before he could defend himself. His Scraggy’s Hi Jump Kick struck Munchlax squarely in the side of the face, knocking him to the ground in a slump. The Fighting-type attack had done a tremendous amount of damage to David’s Normal-type Pokémon, but Munchlax doggedly refused to give up, sustaining the attack with his massive Physical and Special bulk. Munchlax was growing tired, but determinedly faced down his new foe. David called for him to attack with an Earthquake, but Scraggy was too quick. He leapt into action, bouncing off of the floating rocks as the tremor passed below him. He threw himself back to the ground towards Munchlax, but that was just what Munchlax was hoping for. He curled his fist into a tight bundle as it burst into flames. Scraggy was falling towards Munchlax rapidly, unable to defend himself against the blow. Munchlax threw a tremendous Fire Punch at him, knocking him all the way across the cave. Scraggy tried to stand, but slumped to the ground in defeat. Munchlax had now taken down two of the Plasma grunts, but he was breathing heavily and was tired. Again, before he could defend himself, another sneak attack struck him from behind and knocked him to the ground in defeat. McCartney strode up with a terrible sneer, his Trubbish following on his heels.

    “Trubbish, Sludge Bomb- oh wait…” he murmured for show. “Too late…” he sneered. The attack had struck Munchlax harshly and finally defeated him. Between his battle with Joltik earlier and the slow grind from his battles with the Plasma grunts, Munchlax had simply taken too much abuse. David grit his teeth angrily and recalled Munchlax, turning towards Paula and Joltik to continue the fight. Unfair as it might be, he knew the Plasma operatives would be unrelenting; he had to continue to defend himself, because he knew they wouldn’t stop coming. Paula was just finishing her healing process and Joltik looked raring to go.

    “How’s the patient, Paula?” David asked. Paula rose from her knees and stopped the healing wave. She looked up at him with determination in her eyes and replied.

    “Fully healed, master. He appears very anxious to battle as well.” she commented. Joltik was jittering and growling uncontrollably, chomping at the bit to get into the fight. David sent him out and prepared to defend against McCartney’s Trubbish.

    “Joltik, Electroweb!” David shouted. In a blur, Joltik sprang into action and launched the sticky string towards Trubbish. Flailing to get away, Trubbish stumbled in surprise and was bound by the web. It stung him as electricity flowed through the silk, slowly chipping away at his health. In a last ditch effort, Trubbish emitted a Poison Gas attack out of spite. As he gave up the will to fight, the smog struck Joltik, poisoning him to slowly wear him down. Joltik coughed as the smoke cleared, watching as McCartney bowed out like his previous two comrades; the cloud of poison gave the next grunt a chance to get off an early strike as well however.

    “Maractus, Sucker Punch!” a female operative shouted. Before Joltik could react, the cactus Pokémon was already bearing down on him, striking with the powerful Dark type attack. Joltik took the attack in stride however, pushing back his opponent with a Signal Beam, much to David’s surprise. The Bug type attack did crushing damage to his Grass-type opponent, knocking it to the ground in a stupor. Before it could defend itself, David called for Joltik to use Signal Beam again, striking Maractus for a second time. Unable to dodge in time, the iridescent beam of light soundly defeated Maractus, taking down yet another of the Plasma operatives. Joltik was still bursting with energy and jittering around the impromptu arena, but was already starting to show signs of weakness. The Poison damage was beginning to take its toll; the next Plasma grunt strode up to continue the beating, but for the first time since the wave of battles had started, the new opponent wasn’t introduced by means of an unfair surprise attack. Joltik had time to collect himself and prepare for battle.

    “Go, Tranquill” the latest Plasma grunt shouted commandingly. The proud bird sprang from the ball, spreading his wings defiantly. David wasted no time in issuing a command for another Electroweb attack, but Tranquill was too quick. The Plasma agent called for it to use Detect, allowing it to narrowly dodge the crackling web of electricity. It missed and landed on the rock wall behind them, burning and sizzling into the very face of the stone. Tranquill proceeded to strike back, moving in for an Air Slash attack. The Flying-type attack hurt Joltik’s Bug side, but was resisted by his Electric side; he took the attack in stride, much like his previous opponent’s Sucker Punch, but was showing signs of pain, both from fatigue and the Poison condition. He caught the opposing Tranquill on its second pass, striking it at close range with another Electroweb. Unable to dodge at such close quarters, Tranquill fell to the ground in a slump as the trap ensnared him. The Electric-type attack did crushing damage to the frail bird, defeating it soundly. Joltik was proud of his three victories in a row, jittering and growling excitedly; he didn’t see the tiny, sharp projectile flying towards him.

    “Boldore, Rock Blast!” Lennon shouted. It was his turn now to test David, and the rock fragment struck Joltik powerfully. Boldore’s Rock-type attack had done a considerable amount of damage to the already weakened Bug, but he was unrelenting, continuing to fire more and more rocks. Joltik was unable to defend himself from the onslaught and was finally defeated after several repeated hits. David grimaced as his Pokémon took the blows, forced to recall him and rely on his last Pokémon. He shot Lennon a furious look that could have burned through steel before turning to his side and looking to Paula for help.

    “You’re my last line of defense, Paula. We’re almost through this. Are you ready?” he asked in grave determination.

    “Do not worry, master. You saved the best for last.” she replied with a devilish grin. She began to step forward into the fray, shooting Boldore a confident look. Without even waiting for a command from her trainer, she burst with psychic power like she had at the river that morning and summoned a powerful Magical Leaf. The wind whistled through the whole cave as the stream of foliage found its way toward her from the outside. Boldore looked around in terror, unable to dodge in time due to his massive stone body. The leaves flew into the clearing at tremendously high speeds, hacking and slashing at Boldore’s rocky body. The Grass-type attack was perfectly matched to defeat Paula’s Rock-type opponent, but he managed to hold on thanks to his Sturdy Ability. Struggling to stand and continue the fight, Boldore looked up at Paula through tired and nervous eyes. She continued to burn with psychic flames, flipping him a confident grin. Unrelentingly, she summoned a quick Confusion attack to finish the job. Boldore slumped to the ground in defeat, marking yet another win in quick succession for David. Paula calmed herself and returned to the ground, looking around for the next challenger. David had the same realization at that moment too; he had actually defeated most of the Special Agents at this point, with only a few still remaining. N was still standing behind the group, grinning to himself calmly with his arms folded as he watched the test unfold. The next grunt walked up to do battle with the mighty Hero of Truth.

    “Liepard, go!” he shouted, throwing the Pokéball into the field. The majestic cat jumped from the ball and sat down, eyeing Paula suspiciously. It raised a paw to its mouth and began to clean itself with an air of superiority. The Dark-type Pokémon should have had an advantage over Paula in theory, but David had an ace up his sleeve.

    “Liepard, Fake Out!” the Plasma agent commanded. Liepard set its paw back down on the ground and glared at Paula menacingly. It slowly rose and started walking away, but then suddenly lunged towards Paula in a flash. The sudden movement startled Paula, but she was expecting it and utilized Liepard’s temporarily lowered guard to strike.

    “Hey Paula!” David started to say in a loud voice. “Remember when N beat us in Accumula Town because you didn’t know any moves that could damage his Purrloin?” he asked. Paula nodded and grinned as she realized his plan. “You know what I think about Purrloin and Liepard?” he asked.

    “What is that, master?” she asked back sheepishly.

    “I think that- FOCUS BLAST!” he shouted in reply. Paula summoned the bundle of energy and launched it towards the overly-confident cat. The Fighting-type attack dealt absolutely crushing damage to her Dark-type opponent, soundly defeating it. David raised his fist in excitement, motioning towards N in the back of the room.

    That one was for you, N!” he shouted in a jubilant, determined voice. Paula blushed and giggled at his joke, but lowering her guard like that proved to be a mistake. The final Plasma agent who had yet to battle released his Pokémon and launched off another surprise attack at her.

    “Gurdurr, Low Sweep!” he shouted menacingly. The massive, bulky Pokémon strode towards her, swinging his thick steel girder with tremendous strength at her fragile legs. The Fighting-type attack was not particularly effective against her, being a Psychic type, but the steel beam had still struck her frail, delicate body harshly. Her thin legs buckled against the strike, flinging her across the room. She smashed into the rock wall harshly, crying out in surprised pain. David had watched his Pokémon take damage many times before, but there was something different about this time; he felt a cold shiver run through his body from his heart as he heard her scream, burning with rage at his opponent. He felt small tears well up in his eyes momentarily for some reason, but blinked them away and focused on the fight.

    “Paula, Confusion!” he shrieked, but she was already way ahead of him. Paula looked like she was about ready to kill something. She burned with psychic power for a third time that day, levitating through the air and bearing down over Gurdurr. The meathead tried to still look tough and in control, but a cold sweat was breaking on his brow. Paula sneered at him and loosed the most powerful blast of Confusion David had ever seen from her. Gurdurr was defeated in an instant as the Psychic-type attack absolutely crushed her Fighting-type opponent. Paula burned with rage as the final Plasma grunt was defeated. She fell back to the ground, but winced as her legs had to again support her weight. She was breathing heavily, having taken a good deal of damage, but was still ready for more. Paula seemed more powerful than David had ever seen her; he was glad that she had had extra breakfast that morning. Now it was N’s turn to battle and he slowly strode forward.

    As all eight of the defeated Plasma agents in N’s task force grouped back together, their leader began to ominously move forward. N wore a proud grin on his face and began to clap slowly. He reached the head of the pack and put his feet together, standing up very straight. He reopened his eyes and shot David a confident look.

    “David, I know you don’t like me very much, but I want to be honest with you.” he started to say softly. “I’ve known all along you were the Hero of Truth, but my father said I had to prove it. That was the whole reason for this test, you’ll recall; to verify if you really will be my opponent when we fulfill the prophecy together.” he continued. “You have surpassed my expectations with flying colors. It will be an honor to battle you with Zekrom in the future.” he said. “Are you ready for one final battle before we let you leave?” he asked. David grit his teeth and nodded a single time. N smiled and drew his Pokéball for the final battle.

    [Author’s Note: For an enhanced experience, listen to this during the next few paragraphs.]

    “Ferroseed, help me please, my friend.” N said stoically. He released his Pokémon, revealing the Thorn Seed Pokémon. It gripped into the ground, staring Paula down quietly. It was silent and mysterious, simply waiting for a command. Paula couldn’t get any kind of reading off of it; the Steel-type Pokémon would be able to resist her Psychic attacks easily.

    “Ferroseed, Pin Missile please.” N commanded. Ferroseed began to launch its thorns towards Paula, still remaining stock still. Paula tried to dodge the spikes, but she was tired from her prior battles. The Bug-type attack did considerable damage to the Psychic-type ballerina, striking her repeatedly. Paula finally threw up a wall of Heal Pulse to block the rest of the spikes, but she had already taken a good deal of damage. She was growing angry, although she was also growing increasingly more and more tired.

    “Paula, another Focus Blast!” David shouted in desperation. Paula struck Ferroseed with the Fighting-type attack, doing harsh damage to her Steel-type foe, but she was growing weak. Ferroseed weathered the attack, still doggedly digging into the ground. He continued to bombard her with Pin Missile, slowly chipping away at her dwindling health.

    Paula was losing. She would have been able to easily defeat N if she were fighting him on fair footing, but David had already lost Munchlax and Joltik to the onslaught of prior battles, and Paula had sustained damage from them as well. Ferroseed was relentless with the Pin Missile attack, and every one of the tiny shards that hit her did tremendous damage, given that it was a Bug-type attack and she was a Psychic-type. She desperately threw up another wall of Heal Pulse to try and sponge the hits, but exerting the effort to create her shield left her without strength. She collapsed to the ground behind the wall, listening to the rhythmic tapping of Pin Missile bombarding her shield like rain against a window. It would only be a matter of seconds before they broke through.

    “Master…” she murmured in a strained voice. “I don’t know… what more… to do…” she continued. David knew what was necessary, but was hesitant to call for it.

    “Paula, you’ve got to get off another Focus Blast; it’s the only move that will do any real damage to that thing. It can resist Confusion and Magical Leaf. Can you do it?” he asked with panic creeping into his voice. Paula struggled to lift herself back off of the ground and summon the attack, but she was without strength.

    “I… I…” she stammered, but David knew she was done.

    “…it’s okay, Paula. You did your best…” he thought dejectedly to her. “When Heal Pulse breaks, I’ll tell N that we surrender. I won’t let him hurt you anymore…” he continued. Paula could feel her heart break.

    Ferroseed continued to bombard her with Pin Missile, slowly chipping away at her shield. Paula looked at him through the semi-transparent wall and saw what looked like a tiny sneer form around where his mouth would be. Between David’s begrudging disappointment and compassion for her pain, and her opponent’s unrelenting bombardment, the Emotion Pokémon felt a rare emotion well up inside of her: rage. Paula wasn’t about to let her trainer down that easily. Though her legs wobbled and her body ached, she somehow found the strength to push herself back up. David felt small tears again well up in his eyes as he watched her push through the pain.

    “Paula, stop, this isn’t worth it, you don’t have to do this.” he started to say, but Paula refused.

    “I… am… not… out… yet…” she said in a pained voice.

    “Paula, no! Don’t do it! You’ve done enough already, stop! I won’t let him hurt you!” he commanded, but Paula wouldn’t hear it.

    “I… am… not… out… yet… master…” she said again, ignoring him.

    “Paula, return!” David shouted commandingly, raising her Pokéball and trying to recall her to it by force. She spun around and shot him an angry glare, launching a weak psychic blast towards him and knocking her ball from his hand. David looked down at it in surprise as it bounced away, clinking against the stone floor. He turned to face her again as she continued to rise in defiance.

    “Master…” she struggled to say. “I told you…” she continued. “I will not give up.” As she said this, her body went limp as if possessed by a spirit and she began to glow. Her eyes glazed over again, glowing like flashlights in a brilliant white; her mouth opened wide with a similar light shining out of it from inside of her. Just as her shield of Heal Pulse broke and the remaining Pin Missiles flew to strike her, her whole body burst into the light… and she began to change.

    Pulsating blue rings spread out from the center of her body, wrapping around her at a slow rate. Her body became nothing more than an amorphous bundle of light, destroying the Kirlia that was and replacing it with the Pokémon that would be. The blue rings started to wrap around her faster now, glowing in rhythm with the brilliant pulsating light. The bundle of light slowly began to take a more defined form, growing appendages and reforming into a humanoid shape again. It stretched into the form of a very tall, thin woman, with slender arms and a flowing dress. Paula continued to float in the air, flashing like a strobe light at a rapid pace. As the period of the flashing light began to approach infinity, she filled the whole cave in brilliant white light and burst. Taking her place was the gorgeous, angelic form of a fully evolved Gardevoir; Paula had at long last evolved.

    Gardevoir gently fluttered back down to the ground, seeming to find a newfound strength after evolving. Her flowing evening gown fluttered around her as she descended, revealing fleeting glimpses of her long, slender white legs. She reached the ground delicately, staring the enemy Ferroseed down with a look equally seductive and enraged. Without any hesitation, she raised her left arm towards her opponent, parallel to the red horn that had moved from her head as a Ralts and Kirlia to between her breasts as a Gardevoir. She closed her eyes and began to silently focus, concentrating her psychic powers. The horn began to glow a bright white. Ferroseed watched as Paula began to strike, too surprised by her metamorphosis to know what to do; N knew this was the end and consciously decided against giving his Pokémon a command. The horn continued to glow brighter and brighter until it finally burst with strength. Directed through her outstretched arm, Paula loosed a highly concentrated bundle of psychic energy towards her weakened foe. The blast struck him powerfully and, despite being resistant to Psychic-type attacks, he fell to it; Paula had learned the attack Psychic.

    Ferroseed tried to stay rooted into the ground as he took the attack, but the force from the blow was too much. His remaining pins finally gave way and he became unanchored from the ground. He fell over on his back and rolled away like a pinecone; against all odds, David and Paula had won.

    [Author’s Note: For an enhanced experience, listen to this during the next few paragraphs.]

    Exerting the effort for the powerful attack had drained Paula of all the spare energy she had gained from evolving. A feeling of lightheadedness washed over her and she put the back of her hand to her forehead. She started to sway, collapsing to the ground in a heap. Uncaring of the Shadow Triad still standing behind him or of the small army of Plasma operatives he had just defeated who might try and stop him, David bolted forward and caught her as she collapsed. David softened the impact of the fall, catching her delicate form and gently cradling her in his arms. Paula painstakingly fluttered her eyelids open, looking at him through the same simple red eyes that she had had as a Kirlia. David could no longer restrain himself; he softly began to weep as he embraced his newly evolved Pokémon.

    “You were right, Paula.” he murmured. “You did it.” he continued. Paula gently held him back, cupping his cheek with her hand as small tears welled up in her eyes as well.

    “I am pleased that you are proud, master.” she whispered back. “This is all for you.” she continued. “Do you remember when we first met? Do you remember what I said?” she asked timidly through a pained voice. “I said ‘I will be a Gardevoir some day, master. I will be tall and elegant and have a flowing dress, and you can teach me how to be one.’” she continued. “You taught me how to be one, master; you trained me and brought me to these heights. Please never count me out because you do not want to see me get hurt; as I said in Relic Castle, I will always love you for your devotion, but I fight on your behalf. This… is all… for… you…” she stammered. As she thought the final words to him, her mind slipped and she too passed into unconsciousness along with Munchlax and Joltik. Her body went limp in David’s arms as his final Pokémon became unable to battle. David held her lifeless body tightly and continued to sob. N removed his cap in a show of respect and admiration, ordering all of his guards to be silent as well. N would not interfere and ruin David’s moment; it was a bond he had never seen another human besides himself share with a Pokémon. N gently wiped his tearing eyes as well.

    “Ferroseed, return…” N whispered softly. He returned his defeated Pokémon to its Pokéball and silently began to walk out of the cave. He flipped his hand over his shoulder to indicate to the Shadow Triad to release Cheren, Bianca and Professor Juniper, and then continued to leave without a word. The agents of his task force mulled around curiously, unsure if they should follow their leader or continue to try and attack. Lennon and McCartney jogged up to N and began to speak.

    “Um… Lord N? Is that it? Are we just going to leave now after all that?” Lennon asked in surprise. N sniffled, rubbing his nose, and spoke without turning to look at him.

    “Yes, Agent Lennon, we are. No one could be heartless enough to break up such a loving moment as that.” he whispered. His voice wavered and cracked as he tried to restrain his emotions. Lennon and McCartney shot each other a quizzical look.

    “But my Lord! He is making that poor Pokémon cry! We have them on the ropes; shouldn’t we try and liberate her from his tyranny?” Lennon asked in shock, but N simply sighed.

    “Agent Lennon, you and your partner are quickly becoming two of my favorite advisers, but if you think those two should ever be separated, then you clearly do not fully understand the cause.” he replied. “Pokémon who have been kidnapped and forced into battles need to be liberated; they are free and noble spirits who deserve better than what we can give them. But a bond like that which those two share… that is something I have only ever seen between myself and my own Pokémon. That is in fact the reason why David will be the Hero of Truth; he can command Pokémon as an expert trainer, but he does so with compassion for their pain. The love between David and Paula is something sacred which we will never break, even after we reawaken Zekrom…” he continued. Lennon remained quiet, wearing a shocked expression.

    “Lord N, may I-” McCartney started to stammer, but N cut him off.

    “No, Agent McCartney, you may not. You all have performed beyond expectations and have done a great service to Team Plasma, but my new orders are for us all to retreat and fall back. Do as you are told.” he replied sternly but calmly. Lennon and McCartney lowered their heads and followed him silently. The group of Plasma operatives left the cave and did not say a single other word. David continued to hold his defeated Gardevoir silently, thinking to himself of all the things she had said as he composed himself. After a short period of time, he returned her to her Pokéball and rejoined his friends as they left the cave. They stepped out into sunny Mistralton City, heading for the Pokémon Center to heal their wounded warriors.

    It had been a long and memorable day…

  21. #96
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    The chapter went from hilarious to epic to beautiful. Great job.

  22. #97
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    Can't believe i didn't shed a tear.
    Last edited by Quackjack29; 11th October 2011 at 11:07 AM.
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  23. #98
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    I really liked the new chapter and how you put in music from the actual game into the story. It really helped show how good the battle was. One thing that distracts me was your lack of word choice. You tend to use the same verbs over and over again such as "crushing damage" or "burst with energy". Try to implement different verbs into your story. Other than that, great chapter. Can I be added to the PM list?
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  24. #99
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    AAHH! I was so late that I wasn't able to even review the last chapter.

    *sad*

    But at least the next one came out quickly. ^__^

    Anyways, this was a very good chapter. I think this is the first chapter I didn't really spot ANYTHING that I could nitpick it.

    Because, really, all your chapters are fine. I have to bring up SOMETHING that you can improve on. But this one, I can't. I don't have any problems with this chapter.

    I liked the build-up to the ending. They entered the cave, walked around. Enjoyed it a little bit. A lot of people, when writing Chargestone Cave, kind of skip through, only mentioning brief details about it. Your chapter, although not the most scenic (towards the cave), spent time in the cave, and allowed the beauty, and simpleness of it seep through. At least that's how I felt. @__@

    The comedy in the beginning was also very nice, creating a soft contrast to the rest of the chapter. It started off light, and really not too eventful, and slowly, it became this huge turning point. It became a very powerful chapter. I can very easily see why you say this is your favorite chapter.

    I like Joltik. He seems like the fun, but excited and eager type of Pokemon. I can't wait until we see more of him!

    And everyone else was characterized very nicely as well. The slightly less prepared and un-trainer like behavior of Bianca was shown, Cheren's knowledge and slightly childish side is shown, David's own simplicity and kindness is also shown. Juniper and Clay were also nicely characterized.

    And now that I think about it, Gardevoir was the right Pokemon for David. Bonds are questioned very highly by Team Plasma, and Gardevoir is the prime example of a trainer's bond with their Pokemon (umbreon and Munchlax too, but that's beside the point, because Gardevoir is kind of double). It escaped my notice until we reached the part where N brings up the bond the two share. I was like, "Woah. I see what you did there." Very clever.

    And the battle scenes. As usual, right on spot. I don't know if I'm just getting used to it, or you're actually starting to do it, but I feel more emotion coming from your Pokemon in battle now. And Paula's evolution scene; very powerful. I'm with you; that line is my favorite line you've ever written. I'm like, all giddy about it. haha. But the whole scene was so nicely written.

    Another thing I want to add is that I actually thought it was a really cool idea for you to add music to the story. I may be the only one who says this, but I felt it added a nice dynamic to the story that just words can't do. But it is a story and blah blah blah. I think it's cool. And I must mention that Unwavering Emotions is probably my favorite track on the Black and White Soundtrack.

    On a side note, I really really have to applaud your battle scene with Paula and Excadrill. VERY good use of in-game mechanics and infusing it with the freedom that writing gives you. Such an epic scene.

    You sir have an amazing knack for writing. I believe this is your first story? My first story definitely sounded like a ten year old's piece of writing. Compared to yours, mine might as well have been garbage. This is a very good story, and it is very well written. Some of the best writers I know (well. I know the work.) start off their stories somewhat shakily. As I mentioned in my podcast when I did Author's Cafe, both Breezy's and xXSaberXx wrote amazing stories. But neither of them started off on what you would call a professional level. Breezy's newer stuff don't even look like when she started HL:BMA, and Saber's style actually changed mid-fic. Or more improved. You started off on a very strong note, and this is just one of the chapters that prove that you're either inherently good at writing, or you're improving even more. Which is crazy cos you're already quite skilled, but also expected because you should always improve. ^___^

    Anyways, great job with the story. Sorry about the last rant. @__@ I just wanted to say this as a long time reader. Can't wait to read the next chapter! And just so you know, I always read the chapters when they come out, within two days of when they're released. I've just been really busy lately, and sometimes, I can't write very intelligent reviews, so I just opt to not post B.S. But I always read, because this is a good story. ^__^ Just so you know.

    EDIT: Funny thing. On Macs, there is an option called Speech. You can make your computer read to you. I'm busy getting ready for the Autumn Friendly, so I put that on and was in Chargestone looking for a decent Tynamo to breed. Chargestone Cave. hahah
    Last edited by jstinftw!; 12th October 2011 at 1:54 AM.

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  25. #100
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    Great chapter... Must say though, Team Plasma is crazily evil in this fic. Not that it's a bad thing, but it's a giant leap from the games. It was more of a test here than there, David didn't even get to heal. It's a bit understandable why N only used Ferroseed though... having Paula sweep an entire team may have been too much.

    I bet that line will be very influential with the final showdown (assuming there will be one) with N at the League.

    I honestly liked the in-game music option, by the way. Unwavering Emotions really added to the scene.

    Similarly to what NACHOE! said, your story would blow my story to smithereens. But like he said, we'll all improve our skills as time goes on.
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