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Thread: The Legendarian Chronicles [Revision 11]

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    Default The Legendarian Chronicles [Revision 11]


    “If the Legendaries are so superior, then why do the humans speak of them as though they are nothing but pawns…pieces of a plan that must be obtained? These so-called Legendary Pokémon are in danger, that much is certain.”
    -Mewtwo


    The balance of power is shifting…

    ~THE LEGENDARIAN CHRONICLES~

    Rating: PG-13 for violence, blood/gore, and language. Genre: Action/Adventure, Suspense. Pokéfic Genre: Original Trainer (non-journey), Team Rocket, Legendary

    Notes:
    - Welcome to LC, a fanfic that has been on these forums almost as long as they’ve been alive. I’ve spent the past ten years revising it (with a 3-year hiatus during college) so I hope to bring you the best reading experience I can.
    - LC is recommended for readers ages 13 and up. Although it features violence, language, questionable themes, and dark subjects, it is rather light compared to some of the more mature works on these forums.
    - I fully admit that this fic contains many elements that, well...quite frankly are considered clichéd. That's what I get for continuing to write a fic I started when I was twelve. Nowadays, my intent is to deliberately utilize these clichés in the hopes of using them as well as I possibly can, possibly showing them in a new light in the process.


    ~Book 1: Rebellion~
    Prologue: Separation
    Chapter 1: Death on the Mountainside
    Chapter 2: Reinforcements
    Chapter 3: Clash of the Experiments
    Chapter 4: Ace from the Past
    Chapter 5: Deliberation
    Chapter 6: The Voyage of the S.S. Anne
    Chapter 7: Into the Fire



    ~Worldbuilding Extras:~
    TM Mechanics
    Pokéspeech
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~




    ~Prologue: Separation~


    The time has come, the era draws nearer…

    Every day the balance grows more unstable…how long until it falls?

    Our actions tip the scale…how long until the past is destroyed?

    The Revolution is coming…

    A pair of eyes snapped open suddenly, radiating an eerie cobalt aura and illuminating the inky blackness within the depths of the sea. The true blessing of light had never reached the utter darkness of the ocean floor, and even the rare glow of life could not betray its concealment. The creature to which the eyes belonged knew this better than any other. The deep was always dark and always would be. The deep was always calm—not like the surface. The deep could always hide those who wished to be hidden.

    The ancient creature had spent much time within this realm of its dominion, reflecting upon the state of the world. The Order of the Legends had been empowered to protect the balance, and protect it they had. For so long they had kept watch over its course…caring for it…guiding it. At that thought, the words of the other Legendary Pokémon echoed within the creature’s mind. It had been so long ago—the time when that balance had fallen.

    The story was well known amongst the Order of Legends, though after eons of being passed on, retelling after retelling, it was now more myth than truth. Such thoughts had been the creature’s sole focus; the legend told of a time when Pokémon and humans had lived divided. And just when it seemed that the two worlds would be joined, conflict had torn the land apart. It had taken every effort for the Order to mend the balance, though the exact tale had been lost to time.

    Remembering the secrets of the past only brought further urgency upon the present. There was still one last legacy from that era, and it was far more significant than any of them had imagined. The events of the past few months had confirmed it—that much was certain.

    At once, the creature shot up from the ocean trench like a silver torpedo. The crushing depths released their hold as it flew through the water, scattering countless tiny water Pokémon in its wake. Piercing eyes adjusted to the rapid increase of light just in time to be met with the inviting glimmer of the surface right above. And then the beast rocketed out of the sea. Cool, salty air washed over its body, a sharp contrast to the water’s embrace. The sensation was like needles against its feathers, but still…there was something almost freeing about being able to beat its wings through the currents of wind and take gulps of sweet air that burned its unused lungs yet felt so good.

    It was so wildly different than the deep, but somehow felt just as right. Flying was, indeed, one of the simplest joys in this world. The creature effortlessly sailed through the skies, its wings stealing bits of silvery cloud from all around to shield it from the view of any onlookers, had there been any. One could never be too careful, especially when legendary.

    The legends shall reawaken on the eve of the fourth millennium after the war. And from there shall dawn the new era, with the schism rekindled and the fires of war ignited, only to be smothered by a wave of revolution.


    It was a strange thought, knowing that the balance of the world soon unravel again. Less than seven years remained. The initiation had begun years ago, but now…now the search would be set into motion. It seemed like such an unusual course of action, but the legendary creature knew that it could not be helped, as it was the only way. Eight humans, eight members of the Order…was it even possible? Lugia gazed down over the mainland, its mind filled with vague feelings. For now, at least, events would have to run their course…

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

    A loud ringing filled the air, which meant the end of class for the day—and it was about time, too. I quickly stuffed my books into my backpack, following after my classmates and pretending I hadn’t heard the last-minute assignment that we’d been given. It would have been just as normal as any other afternoon, except my head was still filled with rumors from earlier that morning.

    I glanced down the other end of the hallway just in time to spot my friend Ajia, a small fifth-grader with dark hair and eyes. Well, that was good—at least I’d get to talk to someone before the end of the day.

    “Hey Ajia!” I called out, waving to her from the crowd of my fourth-grade classmates before quickly making my way over to where she was standing.

    “Heya, how was class?” she asked.

    “Meh…failed a Pokéspeech quiz—you know, as always,” I replied with a smirk.

    Ajia laughed. “Yeah, that class is confusing doom when you first start out. It gets better later on, though,” she said.

    “Yeah…” I replied, my mind wandering back to what had been bothering me most of the day. “So, uh…have you seen Starr? I didn’t even see her at lunch.” I fidgeted a bit—how was I supposed to bring up the topic? “Is it really true, that…?” My words sort of died before the end.

    Ajia sighed. “I think she didn’t want to talk about it with you ‘cause she knew you’d take it the hardest…”

    “What? What does that even—ugh, I’ve got to talk to her before she leaves.”

    “She’s right outside, actually,” Ajia pointed out.

    I blinked. “Huh? She’s not taking the bus home?”

    “No, her mom’s picking her up. If you hurry, you might catch her.”

    “Alright. See you on Monday!” I exclaimed, immediately taking off through a pair of double doors behind me.

    The bright afternoon light stung my eyes as I raced past the areas where the younger kids would get picked up by their parents. I quickly looked over all of the groups sitting along the ledges by the parking lot…and then spotted a girl dressed in a purple shirt and jean skirt sitting by herself off to the side. My footsteps slowed, and I hesitated a bit before walking up to her.

    “Hey, Jade,” Starr mumbled, looking up slightly when she saw me. She was leaning forward so that her short brown hair fell across her face—probably trying to keep from looking me in the eye.

    I sat down next to her, but didn’t say anything at first. She had only hinted at what was going on, and I had no idea what I was supposed to think. “So…this is really your last day at school here?” I finally said.

    Starr slowly nodded, not really looking up.

    “Where’re you moving to?” I asked cautiously. She obviously didn’t want to talk about it…and I almost didn’t want to know.

    Her voice was blank as she replied, “Cianwood.” I didn’t even know where that was supposed to be.

    Everything felt silent after that. It was like nothing around us even existed. I couldn’t get my thoughts straight—all of this had come up too fast. I couldn’t figure any of it out.

    “It’s not fair!” I suddenly exclaimed. “You only just moved here a month ago. And moving on your birthday? What’s up with that?”

    “I don’t know…it’s all my mom’s idea, and she didn’t tell me anything. But my dad’s staying here in Viridian,” Starr said gloomily.

    I folded my arms. “Huh. You never really saw your dad very often before…did you?”

    She shook her head.

    “Still…it’s stupid that your mom won’t tell you why all of this is happening,” I added.

    “Yeah…she keeps saying that she wants me and my brother to have a better life that we couldn’t have gotten here, or something like that…she never really explains,” Starr mumbled.

    “Hey, that’s right, what does your brother think about all of this? Isn’t he friends with Ajia?”

    Starr sighed. “I don’t know, Lexx has been acting weird and not talking to me much lately,” she said with a bit of a scowl.

    Neither of us said anything else for a while. I stared at the floor as the time went on, feeling sort of lost. Wanting to make the conversation more enjoyable without totally changing the subject, I asked, “So…since you’ll be in Johto when you get your trainer’s license, which of the starter Pokémon are you gonna choose?”

    “Probably Totodile. You know how much I like water Pokémon,” she said, smiling for once.

    “Cool. It’s too bad I won’t turn twelve for almost three more years. Then I could start a Pokémon journey and—” I realized it instantly. “Hey, wait! If you’re gonna be a Pokémon Trainer, that means you can travel anywhere you want, right? So then you can come visit way before I become a trainer!”

    She paused, looking surprised. “I hadn’t thought of that. It’ll have to be in a while when I get strong Pokémon to protect me while traveling so far, but I will.”

    My face fell. I had been expecting her to be more excited about it. Instead, Starr just stared downward, like she was lost in thought. She looked like she wanted to tell me something else, but didn’t say anything more.

    We sat there for some time. It was probably only a few minutes, but it seemed like forever. And then Starr glanced up suddenly at a blue car that had just parked along the curb. She stared at it for a few seconds, then stood to her feet and threw her backpack over her shoulder before walking towards the car, her feet dragging a bit. She had only taken a few steps when she paused suddenly and turned back towards me one last time.

    “Bye.”

    Just hearing that one word made me feel weirdly numb. I forced a smile—it felt fake, and I could tell from her face that she wasn't fooled by it.

    I didn’t watch as she got in the car.








    ~End Prologue~
    And with that, the stage is set for things to come. The first half of the Prologue is mostly comprised of hints towards future events, but don’t worry—the plot kick-starts itself right away in Chapter 1. Please comment to let me know what you think!

        Spoiler:- PM LIST:


    ~Chibi~
    Last edited by Chibi Pika; 24th September 2012 at 4:31 PM. Reason: Did some quick fixes to ze nitpicks.


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


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    Default Notes~

    If this is your first time ever reading this fic, you can ignore this post, as it will likely be rather confusing. I hope you enjoy this fic, as I’ve put a lot of time and effort into it.


    But on the other hand, some of you are probably going, “Wait a minute! I remember this fic! I thought it died. Wtf, why is she reposing it?!” This post is for you.

        Spoiler:- For Old Readers:


    And yes, I know, I double posted. Come on, it obviously wasn’t for PostCount++; I wanted to separate all this stuff from the main page, since I don’t like cluttering my chapters with author’s notes. I don’t think it’s the end of the worl—*struck down by super deadly mod death.*

    ~Chibi~
    Last edited by Chibi Pika; 2nd October 2011 at 4:35 AM.


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


  3. #3
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    I did read it! See, I'm not completely hopeless at reading things!

    It couldn’t help feeling caught up in the simple joy of flight, for it had not experienced the feeling it quite some time.
    This should presumably be "in quite some time".

    You seem to overuse ellipses just a tad in the prologue. An ellipsis can be effective when used to end a thought or line of dialogue that is actually trailing off, but in lines like this one...

    The deep was always dark and always would be…the deep was always calm, not like the surface…the deep could always hide those who wished to be hidden…
    ...there doesn't really seem to be any meaningful trailing off; the ellipses are just used to make the sentence seem more dramatic, and the ultimate effect of such attempts to create drama with ellipses is generally just a sense of cheesiness. In one of the reviews I wrote for the Perspective contest, I described it as feeling like the author is looking up at you and going "DUN DUN DUUUN!": it doesn't really make things seem more dramatic and intriguing, just calls attention to the fact that's what the author wants you to think. So I think this sentence, and more in the first part of the prologue, would be much better off without all the ellipses. A few work - like the last one, for instance, where it really does seem to be a thought trailing off - but a lot don't. In general, use ellipses very sparingly.

    Why is the trainer starting age suddenly twelve? o_O

    The first person bit doesn't feel especially first-person-y to me, especially given Jade is apparently nine; I can't really picture a nine-year-old's inner monologue wording stuff like "I felt my spirits lift slightly" or "The full effect of it all was weighing over my head" or "I suddenly exclaimed, unable to contain myself" or "Silence fell over us again; I stared at the floor blankly as time passed, still unable to grasp everything that was going on". It probably won't be as noticeable when Jade is older (as I presume she'll be in the main body of the fic), but you might still want to watch out for that a bit.

    Aaand that's it for the nitpicking. Not much has happened so far so there isn't a lot to say on the plot, but things could turn out quite intriguing. I'll do my very best to follow this faithfully as you continue. :3

    Chapter 63: Recovery
    The story of an ordinary boy on an impossible quest in a world that isn't as black and white as he always thought it was.
    (rough draft of the remaining chapters finished for NaNoWriMo; to be edited and posted)

    Morphic
    (completed, plus silly extras)
    A few scientists get drunk and start fiddling with gene splicing. Ten years later, they're taking care of eight half-Pokémon kids, each freakier than the next, while a religious fanatic plots to murder them all.

    Lengthy fanfiction reviewing guide / A more condensed version
    Read and I will be very happy for a large number of reasons.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfree View Post
    You seem to overuse ellipses just a tad in the prologue. An ellipsis can be effective when used to end a thought or line of dialogue that is actually trailing off, but in lines like this one...there doesn't really seem to be any meaningful trailing off; the ellipses are just used to make the sentence seem more dramatic, and the ultimate effect of such attempts to create drama with ellipses is generally just a sense of cheesiness. In one of the reviews I wrote for the Perspective contest, I described it as feeling like the author is looking up at you and going "DUN DUN DUUUN!": it doesn't really make things seem more dramatic and intriguing, just calls attention to the fact that's what the author wants you to think. So I think this sentence, and more in the first part of the prologue, would be much better off without all the ellipses. A few work - like the last one, for instance, where it really does seem to be a thought trailing off - but a lot don't. In general, use ellipses very sparingly.
    Bwah, you're right. And I don't think I do that too much during the main body of the fic (on the other hand, I horribly abuse dashes there...) so I think it was indeed a case of le drama. xP
    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfree View Post
    Why is the trainer starting age suddenly twelve? o_O
    Oh yeah... I forgot that I wasn't going to explain that until Chapter 1. And unfortunately...by "explain" I mean leave an author's note that it's one of those things I'm stuck with and unable to change for reasons somewhat outside my control, and that I am aware that I'm breaking canon. x.X;
    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfree View Post
    The first person bit doesn't feel especially first-person-y to me, especially given Jade is apparently nine; I can't really picture a nine-year-old's inner monologue wording stuff like "I felt my spirits lift slightly" or "The full effect of it all was weighing over my head" or "I suddenly exclaimed, unable to contain myself" or "Silence fell over us again; I stared at the floor blankly as time passed, still unable to grasp everything that was going on". It probably won't be as noticeable when Jade is older (as I presume she'll be in the main body of the fic), but you might still want to watch out for that a bit.
    Egh, I'll try to improve that. x.X Can you believe that it was even worse before? *_*

    Eee, thanks so much for reviewing!

    ~Chibi~


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


  5. #5
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    Ha ha, I remember this story. I read it before, but it was so long ago (and I was too young to understand everything going on, lol), I can't remember what happened in the story at ALL. I do, however, remember the names, for the most part. So yay?

    So to hear you've been re-writing this is rather nice to hear. I can now experience this the way it should be experienced, and I look forward to future chapters. Dragonfree already pointed out what needed to be pointed out, so you got lucky you're off the hook no Grammar Nazi mode today! But if what you say is true, that you have gotten WAY much better, especially since you've been through college (unless you're still in college, so that would actually read 'are in college'), so you may not see that from me a lot, if at all.

    Glad to see you've returned, Chibi Pika. I once thought to myself about a couple of years ago, "Gee, I wonder where Chibi Pika went, she sounds like a really swell member, shame I can't contact her." Now, here you are, having returned from lands afar to bring us a revisioned story of old. It makes staying here longer all the more worth it.

    Please add me to the PM list, I can't bear to forget about this story any further now that it has returned.
    Winner of Best Pokémon/Pokémon Fic of 2013 in the Shipping Oscars
    Current Chapter: Chapter Ten - 3/17/14 / Current: Last Chance - 11/3/11 - Chapter 20 progress: 75%
    I survived Pupa.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kutie Pie View Post
    Ha ha, I remember this story. I read it before, but it was so long ago (and I was too young to understand everything going on, lol), I can't remember what happened in the story at ALL. I do, however, remember the names, for the most part. So yay?
    Hallo there! I remember you too!
    Quote Originally Posted by Kutie Pie View Post
    So to hear you've been re-writing this is rather nice to hear. I can now experience this the way it should be experienced, and I look forward to future chapters. Dragonfree already pointed out what needed to be pointed out, so you got lucky you're off the hook no Grammar Nazi mode today! But if what you say is true, that you have gotten WAY much better, especially since you've been through college (unless you're still in college, so that would actually read 'are in college'), so you may not see that from me a lot, if at all.
    Yeah, I'm still in college (though I'm on my fifth year, so it wouldn't be weird to assume I had already graduated.) It's not even so much that my writing got better during college, just that I'm older and I notice more when characters did things that made no sense. Also I had no sense of purpose before. I wrote scenes "just because," and so I missed lots of crucial character development, and just plain didn't make a lot of parts entertaining enough. There's still probably going to be a lot of patchy logic in the early parts though, so you reviewers will have your work cut out for you. ^^;
    Quote Originally Posted by Kutie Pie View Post
    Glad to see you've returned, Chibi Pika. I once thought to myself about a couple of years ago, "Gee, I wonder where Chibi Pika went, she sounds like a really swell member, shame I can't contact her." Now, here you are, having returned from lands afar to bring us a revisioned story of old. It makes staying here longer all the more worth it.
    Heh, it's been ages, hasn't it? It's really weird posting my fic again after three years, but it's gonna be fun. =D I can't wait to get into the meat of the story.

    Aaaand, I'll add ya to the PM list. Thanks for posting!

    ~Chibi~


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


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    A note: In this fic, the Pokémon Training age limit is twelve. I am aware that I’m breaking canon. And while I generally believe it is good to follow canon, I will change things to make certain aspects of the Pokémon world, in my eyes, function better with the rest of my headcanon. And exploring my headcanon is pretty much the entire reason I'm writing this fic.

    Certain characters need to be a certain number of years older or younger than others. If the training age limit was 10, I’d end up with ridiculously young Team Rocket leaders. Heck, even the way it is now is barely believable.

    And with that out of the way…here we go. Get ready to dive into the plot straight away. No looking back.


    ~Chapter 1: Death on the Mountainside~

    June 14, 3:31 PM

    Summer days were made for this—made for the feeling of exhilaration and the blast of wind in my face as my bike flew down the street. A slight twinge of fear pricked at the back of my mind, but that didn’t matter; my head was too flooded with excitement. I kept my eyes focused straight ahead. My teeth were clenched. My fists tightly gripped the handlebars as I closed in on my target. Just a few more feet, and—

    The front wheel thudded against the start of the ramp; I pulled up on the handlebars suddenly at just the right moment, sending my bike flying into the air.

    “Woo! Yeah!” I yelled, throwing a fist towards the sky in victory. It didn’t matter how many times I had jumped that same ramp; that feeling of being airborne was always amazing. I landed several feet away with a thump and immediately veered my handlebars to double back in a wide arc, turning to look at the top of the hill.

    “Did you see how much air I got?!” I yelled.

    “Big deal, I can beat that!” my friend Rudy called out to me while speeding downward on his bike. The usual determined grin covered his tan face, and his dark brown eyes were wide and full of confidence as he raced downward. Neither of us were really experts at this whole biking thing, but still—it was our favorite way to spend the after-school hours…and summer offered the promise of biking every day.

    I sluggishly pedaled upward, still watching him race toward the ramp. And then—wait, what?

    Before I had any idea what was going on, a black blur had raced out of nowhere and skidded to a halt right in front of me. I swerved instantly to avoid hitting it, but then—crap, I was heading for a parked car, turn, turn! I spun too far, felt my wheels hit the curb awkwardly, then found myself toppling over into a sprawled heap on the grass.

    Well, that was random. But there was really only one thing that could have done that. Sure enough, I felt heavy paws on my chest immediately afterward. Black fur filled my entire field of vision, and the air was filled with musty, hot breath and uneven panting.

    “Ow…get off, Ebony!” I yelled, shoving the dog away. She lumbered off, but sat down less than two feet from me, apparently fighting the urge to jump on me again. With an exasperated sigh, I said, “You’re never gonna get tired of this game, are you?” Sure, she knew who I was, but still felt determined as ever to “protect” her territory and owner—who was now standing next to his bike, cracking up.

    “Pfft—shut up, Rudy” I laughed, climbing to my feet and wiping the grass off my baggy shirt and jeans. “How’d Ebony get out this time?” I glanced back at the energetic young dog Pokémon, who was now wagging her short, stubby tail with the apparent hope that she could play with us.

    “Dunno,” Rudy said, shrugging. “I guess I didn’t close the backyard up good enough. At least Chloe didn’t get away.” He grabbed Ebony’s collar and led her toward his backyard. The Houndour followed without struggle, although her reluctance showed with how heavily she dragged her paws.

    “Oh yeah, and I forgot to tell you…I get to take Ebony with me when I leave,” Rudy spoke up casually, as though I already knew what he was talking about.

    “Huh?” I said offhandedly, not really sure what he was getting at. And then suddenly my brain clicked into place. “Wait, wait… You’re going on a Pokémon Journey? Now?!”

    “Yeah, didn’t I tell you?” he asked.

    “No. You didn’t,” I said flatly. Really, he waited until now to tell me something like this?

    “Yeah? Er, sorry…but come on, you can’t be surprised. I mean, school just got out, and I’ll be getting my score from the Pokémon Handling exam any day now. It’s like the most perfect time to start training.”

    I had to admit he was right. Summer was really the best time for kids to start their training journey, even though you could apply to take the exam at any time during the Pokémon Handling class…after turning twelve and passing the two years required Pokémon courses beforehand. Rudy would have gotten his trainer’s license last year if he hadn’t been missing some credits—failing Pokéspeech the first time hadn’t helped much either.

    “It’s not fair,” I muttered. “I’ve been taking practically all of the Pokémon classes ever since forever. But did my parents let me take the test when everyone else did? No, it was always something like, ‘you’re not old enough and education is more important.’” It had taken all the begging and pleading in the world to be allowed to even take the test this year. And while I couldn’t deny that I’d been excited when I’d opened the results envelope to see a passing grade the day before, it didn’t mean much if I wasn’t allowed to leave on a Pokémon Journey.

    “I don’t see why it really matters now, though,” Rudy commented, looking kind of bored with my complaints after having heard them a dozen times. “I say you should just leave once you get your license.”

    “Are you kidding? I was only even allowed to take the test in the first place because I swore I just wanted to be able to train, and that I didn’t want to go on a journey. I’d be in so much trouble if I just up and left.”

    “Alright, alright, it was just an idea,” he said, waving a hand impatiently. “At least you can get a license now. That’s one thing.”

    “Yeah…” I mumbled distantly, not really wanting to talk about it anymore. Everyone else I knew had left to train and now Rudy, one of my few remaining friends, was leaving too. Then again, the other reason I was upset was probably just as significant—if not more—but…I didn’t want to think about that right now.

    “So…what Pokémon are you gonna get if you passed?” I asked, trying to change the subject. “You are gonna get a starter, right?” Sure, there was always the chance that he could have applied for Ebony to be his starter Pokémon, but most trainers just went with getting one of the official League-raised starters.

    “What do you mean ‘if’? Of course I passed, and why the heck would I pick anything other than Charmander?”

    “Right,” I said, rolling my eyes. “Because obviously having one fire Pokémon just isn’t enough. This way you can light even more random crap on fire.” I guess the flame-tailed Charmander would be a perfect match for him, in that case.

    “I just hope they don’t run out of starters at the League registration building…” Rudy mumbled to himself as we led Ebony along a rock path to a fenced-off area of his backyard. “Maybe if I get my results today—it is Friday—but so many trainers have already started…”

    “Heyy, that’s right—Charmander is the most popular Kanto starter. You might get stuck with Bulbasaur,” I said tauntingly.

    “Shut up,” he laughed. “I don’t like grass-types.”

    Really? I had no idea,” I said, rolling my eyes.

    We stepped onto the grass and over to the fence where Rudy opened a gate and let her in with Chloe, another puppy Pokémon of his. Chloe wagged her fluffy, cream-colored tail and rubbed her orange-furred nose against the fence, but to no avail. The Growlithe then blinked her large eyes at us before deciding to roughhouse with Ebony. Rudy glanced around the backyard and clapped a hand to his forehead.

    “Oh crud! I forgot to do my chores—my dad’s gonna kill me!” he exclaimed frantically.

    “I could help,” I said, shrugging.

    He considered the offer for a bit, running a hand through his spiky black hair. “No…if my dad gets home and sees that you’re here…I wasn’t even supposed to be playing in the first place. Help me get the ramp in and then I gotta get to work.”

    I groaned mentally as we ran back to the front yard—figures that something like this would come up. We grabbed opposite ends of the ramp and carried it to his garage, setting it in a corner next to the large piles of boxes that took up most of the space. He wheeled his bike in and slammed the garage shut.

    “I’ll see ya, Jade,” Rudy said, running to the backyard.

    “Later,” I said, swinging a leg over my bike and riding down the street to my house. Well, a perfectly good day of biking had been cut short. The only thing I could think of to pass the time was…bike some more. It seemed like a nice day to go riding around town for a little bit, in any case…just to take my mind off things.

    I grabbed my wallet from my room, quickly scribbled a note to my mom on the first piece of scrap paper I could find, and was about to head outside when a fluttering noise from the other room made me stop. The source of the noise was the Pidgey sitting atop the wooden perch in the corner, flapping his wings lightly. He chirped occasionally, not saying anything in particular but hoping to get my attention in the smallest way possible.

    “Alright, alright, Swift. You don’t have to be so shy—you know you can come with me whenever I go for a ride,” I said cheerfully, holding out my arm as the small, tawny bird flew over to perch on my shoulder. I knew how boring it had to be staying inside all the time. As I walked outside and mounted my bike once again, the Pidgey took flight and soared in the sky above me, chirping contentedly.

    I sped down the streets of Viridian City, glancing around at the densely packed stores and buildings of the town. I didn’t have anywhere to go in particular, but the free time was nice, just being able to ride around aimlessly. I glanced up at the sky, taking my hands off the handlebars occasionally and thinking about everything that was going on.

    Rudy was leaving. Going on a Pokémon journey, like everyone else. And as much as I hated to admit it…I’d been glad when he hadn’t been able to get his license last year.

    I’d never had many friends, but it seemed like for each one that left, I always had someone still here. First Ajia three years ago, then all the aspiring trainers in my year, and then everyone I knew in the year below me. I didn’t even want to be a professional Pokémon Trainer; I just wanted to go with them. There wasn’t even much point in having passed the Handling exam—what good would a license do me now?

    I hated to think about it, and yet I didn’t want to do anything but think about it.

    I was now nearing the edge of Viridian city; the buildings on either side of the road grew further apart and open stretches of tall grass were now visible. I reached the point where the road merged with the highway to Johto, with trails leading north branching off into the forest—this was usually where I turned around. I glanced up at the sky and was about to call to Swift, but he was nowhere to be found.

    “…Swift?” I called out hesitantly, half expecting him to hear me and suddenly fly into view, even though there was no sign of him anywhere in the open sky. Where had he gone? He had never done this before.

    “Swift!” I yelled, pedaling hard to power my bike along the route. Part of me had just started to wonder how I would ever find him if he didn’t come back when I noticed that the sky was empty. There were no birds within sight, and these fields were usually full of Spearow.

    “That’s…weird…” I muttered to myself. I surveyed the horizon intently, looking for any clues, and then spotted a glimpse of smoke within the trees to the north. What was that?

    Feeling almost compelled to follow in that direction, I turned and rode along one of the trails that led north—towards the forest. I reached the treeline within minutes and kept going, unsure of whether I’d be any nearer to finding Swift when I could barely see the sky. Still, I kept feeling a vague sense of significance, like there was something I’d find here. I couldn’t explain it, and the more time passed, the more stupid I felt.

    I was just about to turn around when I caught sight of a winged figure passing over the trees above me.

    “Swift?!” I yelled, not expecting much. It could have been any bird.

    Except it wasn’t. It was him.

    “Swift!” I exclaimed, holding out my arm for him to perch. “Why’d you fly off like that? What’s going on?”

    His expression was reserved like usual, but he looked distinctly troubled by something. He motioned a wing in the direction I had been heading.

    “You flew that way? Did you see the smoke or something? Is there a fire?” I asked.

    The Pidgey nodded. I glanced over my shoulder, but now that there was a thick canopy of trees above us, I couldn’t make out the smoke. Then again…weren’t there a lot of fire Pokémon living in this area? Fires had to be pretty common.

    Swift gave a low string of chirps. This time they had meaning, and I had taken enough classes on Pokémon language to understand his words as, “*It’s bad…you should see.*”

    He took flight again towards the ridge north of us, and I followed in silence for several minutes. In time, the air was filled with a thick haze, and a horrible stench burned my nose. And still we continued on until we reached the edge of the destruction. One moment we were within the thick of the forest, and the next, there was nothing but the charred remains of tree trunks and blackened bits of what had once been grass and leaves. Flurries of ashes saturated the air, stinging my eyes. And that noxious odor just wouldn’t go away.

    I stopped dead. For whatever reason, I realized that the odor saturating the air was burning flesh. These woods had been filled with Pokémon, all of them now dead. My brain really had no idea how to process the scene. Who on earth expected to see something like this on an ordinary day?

    “C’mon…” I muttered to Swift. “We don’t need to be here. We shouldn’t be here.”

    But then I caught a glimpse of flame amongst the ashes, still burning feebly at the edge of a dark mass. I leaned my bike against a tree before approaching it hesitantly, my eyes wide once I got a good look at it.

    It was breathing.

    The mound was alive. It was a Charmander.

    I stared, unable to believe it. The lizard’s normally glossy orange scales were burnt black, and with each breath its body shuddered, as though it were cold despite the fact that its body was filled with warmth. The flame that would normally have burned bright yellow on its tail was little more than a tiny scarlet ember that flickered constantly.

    Shaking slightly, I reached a hand towards it. I didn’t know why I was doing it—it was like my arm was moving on its own. So far the Charmander hadn’t reacted to my presence at all. I took a deep breath before awkwardly attempting to pull the blackened scraps of leaf and wood away from it. The lizard’s body jerked suddenly upon having its skin exposed to the air like that, and I pulled my hand back immediately. Okay, so trying to clean its wounds was a bad idea; I didn’t even know what I was thinking. It wasn’t like I had any water or bandages anyway. In fact, water probably would have made things worse.

    The fire Pokémon didn’t move again after that. It was still breathing though, so I could only guess that it was out cold.

    “I wouldn’t stay here much longer if I were you.”

    I almost jumped at the sudden voice—how was anyone else here?! I immediately glanced over my shoulder to see a figure standing behind me. Upon turning to look at him more clearly, I could see that he was several years older than me—in his late teens at least—and quite a bit taller than me, for that matter. He was dressed in a black shirt with a long gray coat, dull blue cargo pants, and gray boots. The expression on his face was reserved, and somehow his overall air was that of someone much older.

    “What did you say?” I asked.

    “You shouldn’t be here,” he repeated. “They wouldn’t want any witnesses, and”—he paused mid-sentence and suddenly asked, “Are you a Pokémon Trainer? You look old enough to be one.”

    “Um, no…not yet,” I admitted. After a few seconds of awkward silence, I asked, “Are you?”

    “Well, I’d have to be if I wanted to carry these around,” he said, pointing to the small red and white spheres clipped onto his belt. Right…it would’ve been illegal for him to use Poké Balls if he weren’t a licensed trainer.

    Now gazing at the ravaged landscape, he muttered, “Amazing how much damage humans can cause… The fire’s spread too far, though…how are they gonna keep it unnoticed?” I wasn’t entirely sure whether he was talking to me or just commenting to himself.

    “Who did this, do you know—?”

    “There’s no point trying to explain it,” he interrupted, walking further in the direction I had originally been going. “Just follow me.”

    I glanced back down at the pitiful form of the unconscious Charmander. I didn’t want to risk hurting it by moving it, but what choice did I really have? Was I supposed to just leave it here to die? I hesitated as long as possible, but then finally wrapped my arms around the lizard’s limp body, taking care to avoid its tail flame, tiny though it was. Its skin felt raw and sticky against mine and gave off a radiating heat.

    The trainer was now just a hazy figure in the distance with all of the soot clouding the air, and I had to jog quickly to catch up with him. “How recently did all of this happen?”

    “So recently that it’s still happening,” was the only response. We reached the edge of a ridge that overlooked an open valley between the forested hills. It was there that I saw what he was talking about.

    A brilliant flash of fire tore across the mountainside before stopping suddenly in the middle of the clearing and unleashing a blazing heat wave outward. When the flames cleared, I saw it. A fantastically bizarre beast stood before us, shaking its head and ruffling its long brown mane. The creature surveyed its surrounding intensely, and when it turned in our direction, I couldn’t help but stare openmouthed. Its face was, in short, amazing—rimmed by brightly colored crests of red along the side, blue over the muzzle, and a crown of yellow over its eyes. Large sets of spikes jutted outward from the sides of its back, and between them a silky, almost cloud-like tail billowed constantly. Entei, it was called—the Beast of the Volcano. A Legendary Pokémon of Johto…here, right in front of us. I was almost unable to fully take in the amazing sight.

    And then suddenly there was a roar of engines to the right. A huge group of jeeps and trucks burst into the clearing, filled with countless armed adults. Entei recoiled backward, pelted by bullets—they were shooting it? The auburn beast slammed its shackled paws to the ground and let loose a massive wave of fire, incinerating everything within the valley. But when the flames cleared, I could see that the jeeps were surrounded by protective force fields. A large group of Pokémon charged forward from behind the vehicles, unleashing torrents of water at their target. Entei stood its ground with a determined glare, but I could still see it wincing in pain as steam poured off its body. I could still hear the fury in its roar as it finally tried to flee, but was somehow prevented from it.

    “What…how can they…? Why…?” I stammered.

    There was a pause. Then came the reply, “Have you ever heard of Team Rocket?”

    The name did seem…familiar. Faint memories of the news surfaced at the back of my mind, but they were obscured by time and the fact that, well, I didn’t really pay attention to those things when I was a kid.

    “Sort of…why?” I responded.

    “It started out as a sort of widespread group of criminal gangsters,” he continued, without acknowledging the question. “But then the leader slowly pushed the team towards power and conquest. He recruited hundreds of members from all over Johto, Kanto, and even a few from way out in Hoenn and other regions. There are still some places when their standard street operations are well-known, but that just hides the fact that there’s a whole other side to the team that no one knows about.” He motioned to the ongoing struggle down in the valley.

    I couldn’t quite find my words. Everything he had said was kind of overloading my head, and the only thing I could manage was, “How do you know about all of this?”

    “Figures that you’d ask that. Let’s just say I have my sources. There are quite a few people working against Giovanni from within the team.”

    “Giovanni?” He couldn’t mean…the Giovanni?

    “Yeah, he’s the leader of the team. The one behind all. You’ve probably heard of—”

    “Of course I’ve heard of him,” I interrupted. How could I not know about the leader of the Viridian Pokémon Gym? “You’re saying he’s head of Team Rocket?”

    He nodded.

    I couldn’t help staring. “You’re serious? Shouldn’t more people know about that, then? I mean, if the leader of some huge organization is right under everyone’s nose, then—”

    “You underestimate the team’s influence,” he replied with a slight laugh. “They have agents working all over. Turning him in wouldn’t do anything. Influencing the police or the media or whatever they need is easy for them.”

    Well that was…unnerving. Really, what was I supposed to say to that? With a glance back at the blazing hillside, I asked, “Shouldn’t we do something? I mean, if we don’t—”

    “We?” he said, again laughing slightly. “You have a pet bird and a half-dead lizard, so it’d be me doing everything. And I know my limits. The dragons I train may be powerful, but they’re not fast enough to dodge repeated fire from the Rockets. They’d be shot down before getting within twenty feet of the battle.”

    I glanced down at the dying Charmander in my arms, feeling rather miserable about all of this. Really, why did he even bother explaining everything only to flat-out tell me I was useless?

    “If you want to help…” he began slowly, with an unusual tone, “then I’ll tell you this: with agents all over Johto and Kanto, if Team Rocket really wanted to execute a massive takeover, I’d say it’s within their power by now.”

    I turned towards him in surprise. “What?”

    “The only reason they haven’t already is because they’re building up forces in case they had to face an army of trainers united against them. That’s why they’ve taken to capturing Legendary Pokémon. If each Team Rocket faction were headed by a top leader wielding a Legendary, there would be no stopping them,” he explained matter-of-factly, as though Team Rocket being on the verge of world conquest was normal, everyday conversation.

    I was frozen, unable to process all of this. “…What do we do about that? Why are you telling me this?”

    He gave me a very serious look. “Are you interested in helping stop Team Rocket’s Legendary project? Would you be willing to fight them?”

    I stared. How exactly was I supposed to fight them, and how did he expect me to? Didn’t he just say that there was no way I could help? I kept waiting for him to say something like “it would be nice if it were possible,” but his expression was cold and unflinching.

    “How…what do you mean?” I asked.

    “If you were able to stop Team Rocket from catching Legendaries, would you?”

    I wanted to say “well, who wouldn’t?” but that didn’t quite seem like a very good answer. I found myself simply nodding.

    He considered me for a while before reaching into his coat pocket and pulling out a small card. “I’ve been giving these out to a lot of people,” he said, handing it to me. “If you really want to stop them…this will explain what you need to know. Once you become a trainer, let me know and I’ll tell you more.”

    “But how—?” I began.

    “The card explains everything,” he said again. “Don’t lose it, and don’t reveal it.”

    He pulled out a red and white sphere and pushed a button on it, causing it to enlarge and open. In an instant, a flash of white light burst forth from inside it and began to take the form of a huge dragon, upright and majestic. Shiny, flaming orange-colored scales covered most of its thickly muscled body, save for a massive pair of blue wings. I widened my eyes—it was a Charizard, the fully evolved form of Charmander. This was the first time I had seen one in person.

    He replaced the Poké Ball and climbed up onto the dragon’s back. It flexed its wings and outstretched them, flapping against the air and sending flurries of soot into my face. I shielded my eyes reflexively until the reptile had ascended high enough.

    “I’ll see ya,” the trainer said before soaring out of sight.

    “Er, later,” I said more to myself than him, wondering how and why I’d see him later. I looked at the small card he had given me and read.

    If you have received this card, it is because you have been recognized as either a beginning trainer with the potential for skill, or an ambitious young trainer willing to face danger for the sake of stopping Team Rocket. If you are serious about joining a rebellion against the Rockets, then meet in Vermilion City prior to the following date for further instruction. The cruise ship, S.S. Anne departs on July 10.

    Talk about being vague. Still, it made sense, just in case Team Rocket got a hold of one of the cards. But was he really just giving them out to random trainers? Why was he doing this? And how on earth had I gotten myself mixed up in all of this?

    I turned back to the battle that was still continuing. Everything about it was completely mind-boggling. The ridiculously powerful fire beast was still struggling to ward off its attackers, but I could tell that its strength was waning. I still found myself wanting to help Entei somehow, even though I knew I couldn’t do anything. It was frustrating, and I felt stupid about it. With a sigh, I sat down and continued to watch.

    And then it happened. The Rockets and Entei were now only about a hundred yards away from where I was sitting. One of the jeeps near the front of the formation suddenly broke from the group and began speeding up the hill in my direction. I stared stupidly at the vehicle racing towards me, unable to quite work though what it meant.

    “Crap… Crap—don’t tell me they…” My eyes widened as the realization hit me like a brick.

    I’d been spotted. And they were coming for me.





    ~End Chapter 1~
    Egh. I don't really like that cliffhanger, but it was the only place to end the chapter that semi-worked. That, or end up with my first chapter being 16 pages long. That's definitely a way to draw readers in.[/not]

    Anyways...due to the nature of this revision having a very choppy, cut-and-paste nature, where I rewrote scenes completely out of order and sewed them together with old material, the thing I’m most concerned with is making sure that all the material feels coherent. The last thing I want is for some scenes to feel like they were done in a completely different writing style. x.X;

    ~Chibi~
    Last edited by Chibi Pika; 6th June 2012 at 4:29 AM. Reason: edits~


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


  8. #8
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    Finally posted it eh?

    I've been waiting for over a month for this! :P

    What I've read so far was enjoyable, nice and flowing, the conversations were natural and the narrative was great. The premise is awesome and I can't wait for the plot to unfold.

    Thing is, I don't know whether I've read this (or at least a chapter of this) before. The only thing I remember is a battle in one of the Regi's caves and there are a few people trying to catch it, one for evil, others to stop the evil guy. Details are fuzzy but I remember it being awesome.
    Skogsrĺ

    Gardenia never liked the Old Chateau, but what if the Old Chateau liked her?

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  9. #9
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    - Charizard can't learn Fly.

    *smacks* Ignore him.

    - You were thinking it!

    Anyway, I giggled when I got your PM, and was excited to read another chapter. Then I got this idea to open the other thread and compare this revision to the last one you did.

    You sure improved and cut out and changed a lot of things, even cutting the chapter down for easy reading. You sure are more serious this time around, and I say kudos to you.

    Well, this is sure a nice start to kick off the story quickly. Get to the action almost immediately, that works wonders. And I must say, there was a perfect amount of detail, I am finding myself enjoying the story in such a short amount of time. And we get our second first look at a Legendary, nice.

    Question that came to mind: is this similar to the Pokémon Special manga by any chance? I got that feeling when Jade was talking to the stranger whom I swear is Lance, but most likely isn't.

    And how come the chapter is called "Death on the Mountainside"? I'm sure it's reference to the forest fires and/or Team Rocket showing up, but there didn't seem to be anything that was dead. The closest dead thing we have is the Charmander, and it's still alive. Meh, I'm sure I'm just looking too hard into it.

    Anyhoo, looking forward to more! Is this gonna be some weekly thing or something?
    Winner of Best Pokémon/Pokémon Fic of 2013 in the Shipping Oscars
    Current Chapter: Chapter Ten - 3/17/14 / Current: Last Chance - 11/3/11 - Chapter 20 progress: 75%
    I survived Pupa.

  10. #10
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    Eeee, I finally get to read this version. :D And I get to follow it from the start this time, too. Or, well, almost the start. CLOSE ENOUGH. XP Point is, this is gonna be fun. :3

    ANYWAY. Regarding the prologue... I really liked the nice, majestic image of Lugia emerging from the sea that the opening scene provided. :D And the scene that followed had the curious side effect of making me nostalgic for elementary school. Elementary school was freaking awesome. Except for fourth grade. Bleah.

    But back to the fic. Regarding the first chapter, well, first of all:

    “How’d she get out this time?” I said with a glance back at the energetic young dog Pokémon, who was still wagging her short, stubby tail with the apparent hope that she could play with us.
    Apparently I had been in need of some sort of reminder that oh yeah, houndour are DOGGIES, because upon reading that, my mind's reaction was, OH MY GOSH THAT IS SO FREAKING DOGGY OF HER, HOW ADORABLE... as if houndour displaying any even remotely canine qualities was a genuine surprise to me. Which maybe it was. Houndour's a pokémon about which I generally don't find myself doing a lot of thinking.

    But damnit, I'm rambling again. Point is, Ebony was being really cute there. ^^

    On a related note:

    We stepped onto the grass and over to the fence where Rudy opened a gate and let her in with Chloe, another puppy Pokémon of his. Chloe wagged her fluffy, cream-colored tail and rubbed her orange-furred nose against the fence, but to no avail. The Growlithe then blinked her large eyes at us before deciding to roughhouse with Ebony.
    The dogginess! It's just freaking adorable. ^^

    And on an unrelated note:

    I was hit by a pang of nausea as I realized that the odor saturating the air was burning flesh.
    Oh creepy. o~o; Thought that was a nice bit of detail. Well, nice as in it gave the scene a bit more impact, not nice as in pleasant.

    You can put me on the PM list if you want; I'll definitely be back for more, but I can't guarantee for sure that I'll always be able to pop in and respond to chapters while they're still new, so it might be more convenient to just kinda consider me an honorary list member rather than possibly having to keep taking me off and putting me back on. So yeah, feel free to just do whatever seems most convenient where that's concerned. :3

    Current Chapter: Chapter 18 – Remnants

    COMPLETE
    Communication banner: Saffire Persian | TOoS banner: CHeSHiRe-CaT

  11. #11
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    It didn’t matter how many times I had jumped that same ramp, that feeling of being airborne was always amazing.
    Since these are two full sentences, you can't use just a comma to separate them.

    “Big deal, I can beat that!!”
    More than one exclamation mark is never necessary.

    “Seriously, Ebony? Come on, you know who I am, and you sure as heck know you don’t actually need to protect your idiot owner,” I said, jerking a thumb at Rudy, who was now standing next to his bike, cracking up.
    This is a bit "As you know, Bob" - the phrasing here feels like something you put in for the reader's benefit to inform us that Ebony is Rudy's Pokémon (which, of course, it is), rather than something she'd actually say to her friend's Pokémon that she's known for years, and that makes it come off as kind of fake.

    although her reluctance showed with how slowly she dragged her jet-black paws.
    Kind of an awkward description. You've already told us she's a Houndour; in fact, you've already described her as black, so squeezing in a reference to the color of her paws here feels wildly unnecessary.

    “Wait, so you passed the test?” Rudy asked eagerly.

    “I already told you when I got my results yesterday, didn’t I? What does it really matter if I can’t leave to go on a Pokémon Journey?” I muttered.
    Wait, huh? She already told him she passed the test and he still asks her about it? Also, she seems to be implying she isn't going out on a journey even though she just made a reference to how she's getting a license now. I'm confused. o.o

    There is a lot more "As you know, Bob" as the chapter goes on - all the characters seem to have caught a serious case of let's-explain-things-we-both-know-to-each-other-itis. You really don't need to have the characters talk about any of these things, because one of them is your narrator - she can simply think it. It's a lot easier to excuse having characters think things for the reader's benefit than say those things to other characters, provided those things are relevant enough for the character to plausibly be thinking about them, which they are.

    I glanced over to see a small, tawny bird Pokémon flapping his wings from atop a wooden perch.
    This doesn't feel like Jade seeing her own Pidgey; it feels like Jade seeing some Pidgey. Surely from her point of view seeing her pet Pokémon shouldn't just register as "a small, tawny bird Pokémon flapping his wings from atop a wooden perch". It sounds like she's familiar with neither the bird nor the perch, making the reader start to imagine Jade looking over there at this random Pidgey and get confused when she starts talking to it as if nothing were more natural.

    Right…it would’ve been illegal for him to use Poké balls if he weren’t a licensed trainer.
    I'd think you should either capitalize both words of "Poké Balls" or neither - this doesn't make much sense.

    When the flames cleared, I saw it, and it was unlike anything I had ever seen.
    This sentence bugs me - "and it was unlike anything I had ever seen" seems kind of a weird and rather wimpy way to describe seeing a legendary Pokémon, and it's unnecessary anyway since you go on to spend a good long paragraph describing her amazement.

    Entei recoiled backwards, pelted by bullets—they were shooting it???
    As with exclamation marks, you never need more than one question mark in a row.

    Is there a real reason Mr. Mystery Man just cheerfully told her everything? She only saw anything because he got her to follow him, so it's not that she was already involved, and she wasn't exactly brimming with enthusiasm about stopping Team Rocket once they'd witnessed Entei there - all she did was go "Um, shouldn't we maybe do something?", which is pretty much the expected human reaction, so it doesn't exactly justify his bizarre decision to trust her. At least one would expect him to be very careful with the information that he is part of Team Rocket but working against them - that's a recipe for getting oneself murdered if there ever was one, and volunteering it to a strange girl who could be a Rocket member's daughter for all he knows is a pretty humongous risk for the very small benefit of being able to answer her when she asks how he got his info on Team Rocket. And then, of course, there's the bit where he's recruiting a girl who he knows isn't a trainer yet before he starts to involve her, and the card makes it sound like he's making a habit of recruiting beginning trainers, which doesn't make much sense unless he has good reason to believe established trainers are very likely to be tied to Team Rocket somehow.

    Anyway, it's nice to see the plot jumping into action immediately (unlike *cough* some fics). Looking forward to more.
    Last edited by Dragonfree; 6th October 2011 at 5:22 AM.

    Chapter 63: Recovery
    The story of an ordinary boy on an impossible quest in a world that isn't as black and white as he always thought it was.
    (rough draft of the remaining chapters finished for NaNoWriMo; to be edited and posted)

    Morphic
    (completed, plus silly extras)
    A few scientists get drunk and start fiddling with gene splicing. Ten years later, they're taking care of eight half-Pokémon kids, each freakier than the next, while a religious fanatic plots to murder them all.

    Lengthy fanfiction reviewing guide / A more condensed version
    Read and I will be very happy for a large number of reasons.

  12. #12
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    @Diddy

    Heh, believe me, I wanted to post it earlier, but there were still a bunch of things I hadn’t yet worked out. The battle that you remember involving the Regis wasn’t from this fic though. Sounds like it’s from a fic with a similar premise, though I wouldn’t be surprised, as originality is not one of my fic’s strong points (but that’s going to be a given with a fic that tries to take a bunch of clichés and attempt to make them good.)


    @Kutie Pie

    Kehe, your Pikachu needs to play Yellow version! Charizard can totally learn Fly!

    Heh, I was actually wondering if anyone would ever try to compare the two. The next chapter (which is comprised of the second half of the old Chapter 1) is insanely different.
    Question that came to mind: is this similar to the Pokémon Special manga by any chance? I got that feeling when Jade was talking to the stranger whom I swear is Lance, but most likely isn't.
    Oh man. In the old days (like…really old days) I used to rip off the Pokémon Special manga so hard it is not even funny. And not even in the interesting sort of way, with themes or the like. Funnily enough, you’re not the first person to compare him to Lance, though he’s too young to be (and has significantly less spiky of hair. xD)
    And how come the chapter is called "Death on the Mountainside"? I'm sure it's reference to the forest fires and/or Team Rocket showing up, but there didn't seem to be anything that was dead. The closest dead thing we have is the Charmander, and it's still alive. Meh, I'm sure I'm just looking too hard into it.
    *Snicker* An artifact of the past. The first incarnation of this chapter as we know it (Revision 6) was so completely melodramatic and over-the-top and loved to shout at you, “Hey Jade is walking through this area filled with death! And there are dead things everywhere! Dead death DEAD DEATH.” (…I was 14 and had this complex about proving that my fic was cool and mature.) The title is kept mostly out of nostalgia because even for all its silliness, it was still the first version of the fic that began with Jade not getting a starter and going on a journey.
    Anyhoo, looking forward to more! Is this gonna be some weekly thing or something?
    I’m thinking about doing a new chappie every ten days or so. There are still a buttload of edits to be made to future chapters and I don’t want to get ahead of myself. I might get impatient and post Chapter 2 before that though, because it’s actually semi-final right now. Chapter 3 is still a weird mess though.


    @Sike Saner

    Hello Sike!! =D I can guarantee a 100% more awesome reading experience this time around! (Even though you already know all the plot twists, but oh well.) And hey, remember that silly/weird PM I sent you about all the logic fails I was trying to sort through about the plane incident? I actually somehow magically fixed them!



    @Dragonfree

    Alrighty, any of the various nitpicks I don’t respond to here are the ones that I’m gonna go and edit, no questions asked. Thanks for the thoroughness by the way (even if I whine or seem ungrateful.)
    This is a bit "As you know, Bob" - the phrasing here feels like something you put in for the reader's benefit to inform us that Ebony is Rudy's Pokémon (which, of course, it is), rather than something she'd actually say to her friend's Pokémon that she's known for years, and that makes it come off as kind of fake.
    Egh, that was me trying to grapple against the urge to just throw all of that info into the narration (where it originally was) since I’ve been trying to wage a war against my old tendency to have Jade infodump at the readers. And now I realize that all I needed to do was just use my newly improved author powers to make the narration *gasp* less infodump-ish! (Why do I always realize these things too late?)

    Also, maybe it’s just a symptom of the fact that I do “As you know Bob”s all the time in real life. X.x
    Wait, huh? She already told him she passed the test and he still asks her about it? Also, she seems to be implying she isn't going out on a journey even though she just made a reference to how she's getting a license now. I'm confused. o.o
    Alright, this is why I’m glad I’m posting this darned thing again! I’ve read it so many times that idiotic lines like that slip by. I think added that line of Rudy’s in like…Revision 7 (the stupid revision, for future reference.) That or…maybe I was trying to characterize Rudy as the sort of person who would forget/not really pay attention to things his friend told him (and while that is perfectly in-character for him, I could certainly think of less dumb ways to include that.)

    The part about Jade, though…that’s a bit more involved. And now that I look at it, I think it was my attempt to make something more convenient 20 chapters later, which I hadn’t planned on at the time of writing it (what.)

    Okay, to attempt to sort through this… basically, I think my train of thought was that Jade had finally been allowed to take the Pokémon training test, but was still not allowed to go on a journey (yes, that that is more brilliance brought to you by 2004.) Well, the obvious response to that would be: “Lol, just change it. You’re obviously not opposed to revising things.” The problem is…Jade does in fact get a license eventually (very eventually), and it’s without her parents’ approval. So I set it up that she had begged and pleaded to at least take the test, even though she wasn’t allowed to go on a journey. So in that way, she is in the league registry as having passed the exam and being cleared to receive a license. I’m not sure how realistic it would be for her to just be allowed to waltz into a random League building and be allowed to take the exam.

    Hm…I just realized…maybe all of this could have been avoided if I just scrapped the whole “not allowed to go on journey” thing (yet another thing I shoved into an old revision without putting much thought into it.) Except…that would have extremely drastic effects on a ton of future events…oof.
    There is a lot more "As you know, Bob" as the chapter goes on - all the characters seem to have caught a serious case of let's-explain-things-we-both-know-to-each-other-itis. You really don't need to have the characters talk about any of these things, because one of them is your narrator - she can simply think it. It's a lot easier to excuse having characters think things for the reader's benefit than say those things to other characters, provided those things are relevant enough for the character to plausibly be thinking about them, which they are.
    Hmm. I’m almost curious what your opinion would be on the way I had it in revision 10 (even though it suffered from the aforementioned infodump syndrome.) Looks like the best thing I can do here is edit it back to the way it used to be. xP
    More than one exclamation mark is never necessary.

    As with exclamation marks, you never need more than one question mark in a row.
    Yeeaaahh…this is one of those things where…I know that in all technicality it’s wrong, but…

    Alright, you’ve sold me on the question mark thing. I know I got into the habit of using more than one punctuation mark because I’m so picky that my sentences sound exactly the way I intended them, and that it didn’t matter because it was an informal narrator. But I can see how multiple question marks might be kind of silly (though I do want to be able to distinguish the tone between mild confusion and complete bafflement, but oh well.) However, when it comes to exclamation points…I just, I don’t know. I know they say it weakens sentences, but there are so many instances that just wouldn’t sound right without… *goes off to ponder.*
    Is there a real reason Mr. Mystery Man just cheerfully told her everything? She only saw anything because he got her to follow him, so it's not that she was already involved, and she wasn't exactly brimming with enthusiasm about stopping Team Rocket once they'd witnessed Entei there - all she did was go "Um, shouldn't we maybe do something?", which is pretty much the expected human reaction, so it doesn't exactly justify his bizarre decision to trust her. At least one would expect him to be very careful with the information that he is part of Team Rocket but working against them - that's a recipe for getting oneself murdered if there ever was one, and volunteering it to a strange girl who could be a Rocket member's daughter for all he knows is a pretty humongous risk for the very small benefit of being able to answer her when she asks how he got his info on Team Rocket. And then, of course, there's the bit where he's recruiting a girl who he knows isn't a trainer yet before he starts to involve her, and the card makes it sound like he's making a habit of recruiting beginning trainers, which doesn't make much sense unless he has good reason to believe established trainers are very likely to be tied to Team Rocket somehow.
    Lesse…where do I start… I have spent a very long time trying to work out the logistics of all this (though I won’t pretend there aren’t still kinks that need to be ironed out.) I’m just gonna say that…I wouldn’t say he trusts her yet…at all. Given that, however…the line about the fact that he’s on Team Rocket is one of those outdated ones I really should have caught and deleted, so I’ll get rid of that, because there’s no reason for that to be revealed here. Basically…he’s not being too choosy because…urk…dang, I…don’t think I can say why, and not even in the typical-misleading-author kind of way. (And hey, unlike 2005 Chibi, I’m not just being vague and mysterious to seem like I have more things figured out than I really do.)

    But this brings up an important thing that had been bothering me because it’s a plot device I use way too often: what is the best way to go about including obvious logical flaws in a character’s actions, with the intent to explain them later, without frustrating readers in the meantime? In later chapters I try to gloss over it by having Jade go, “Wtf, none of this makes sense, but maybe I just don’t know enough.”

    But yeah, this just kind of gives some insight into what a logistical NIGHTMARE this revision has been and why it’s taken me three years to do it. In Rewrite three, I just cheerfully plowed ahead into a retardedly complicated web of character actions, and it’s taken me this long to try to make them semi-plausible. Actually…the entire fic is basically me trying to logic through all these dumb ideas from when I was—
    Silverwing: Pretty sure she already knows that, Chibs.




    Whew! *deep breath* Long post! So many things to edit! T_T Man, I’m dreading some of the later chapters now. Why am I still trying to make this big logic fail of a fic actually make sense after ten years? Right. Insanity. Gotcha.


    Thanks so very much to everyone for reviewing! Oh yeah, and I’m currently working on a bunch of character artwork, so hopefully I can have one up with each chapter.

    ~Chibi~


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chibi Pika
    The part about Jade, though…that’s a bit more involved. And now that I look at it, I think it was my attempt to make something more convenient 20 chapters later, which I hadn’t planned on at the time of writing it (what.)

    Okay, to attempt to sort through this… basically, I think my train of thought was that Jade had finally been allowed to take the Pokémon training test, but was still not allowed to go on a journey (yes, that that is more brilliance brought to you by 2004.) Well, the obvious response to that would be: “Lol, just change it. You’re obviously not opposed to revising things.” The problem is…Jade does in fact get a license eventually (very eventually), and it’s without her parents’ approval. So I set it up that she had begged and pleaded to at least take the test, even though she wasn’t allowed to go on a journey. So in that way, she is in the league registry as having passed the exam and being cleared to receive a license. I’m not sure how realistic it would be for her to just be allowed to waltz into a random League building and be allowed to take the exam.

    Hm…I just realized…maybe all of this could have been avoided if I just scrapped the whole “not allowed to go on journey” thing (yet another thing I shoved into an old revision without putting much thought into it.) Except…that would have extremely drastic effects on a ton of future events…oof.
    Oh, I wasn't really complaining about the fact it happens that way - I was just confused by it and couldn't figure out what you were actually implying. If you'd just gotten across what's going on in the narration better I wouldn't have tripped over it like that, but because I lacked the background information I couldn't quite piece it together. It's just a clarity issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chibi Pika
    However, when it comes to exclamation points…I just, I don’t know. I know they say it weakens sentences, but there are so many instances that just wouldn’t sound right without… *goes off to ponder.*
    Well. When I say you don't need multiple exclamation marks, I don't mean the stock complaint that it weakens sentences or something - I've never really gotten how that is supposed to work, and there are a lot of similar stock complaints that I'd argue are actually just wrong. But when I see two exclamation marks in a row, I think of particularly immature YouTube commenters. No matter how not-right you feel like it would sound with only one exclamation mark, it cannot possibly be worse than how it sounds with two exclamation marks to me and (I'd wager) many other readers. Hell, the moment I see the second exclamation mark I can't even imagine the character speaking it aloud anymore, because in my head it just transforms itself into a YouTube comment. It's easy for nonstandard word usage or punctuation to take on some nuanced meaning when you're used to writing that way - but ultimately, when a wider audience comes into the picture, you have to consider whether it is actually communicating that nuance to them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chibi Pika
    But this brings up an important thing that had been bothering me because it’s a plot device I use way too often: what is the best way to go about including obvious logical flaws in a character’s actions, with the intent to explain them later, without frustrating readers in the meantime? In later chapters I try to gloss over it by having Jade go, “Wtf, none of this makes sense, but maybe I just don’t know enough.”
    That would depend on what the actual reason for the character's seemingly illogical actions is, but I'd say the main character being confused specifically by the illogicality of it is reasonably reassuring that the character's behaviour is intentionally strange. (Here Jade only questioned a couple of aspects of it - she was confused by why he was handing out cards to beginning trainers, but not by why he'd want to involve her when she wasn't a trainer at all or why he was telling her all that stuff.) There are also ways of actively making somebody's actions seem deliberately illogical as opposed to just illogical, e.g. by making them react very defensively when asked about it, make up a blatantly flimsy excuse, etc., but that depends on the characterization and the precise nature of what they're doing.

    Sorry for all the nitpicking. It's just what I do.
    Last edited by Dragonfree; 6th October 2011 at 7:34 PM.

    Chapter 63: Recovery
    The story of an ordinary boy on an impossible quest in a world that isn't as black and white as he always thought it was.
    (rough draft of the remaining chapters finished for NaNoWriMo; to be edited and posted)

    Morphic
    (completed, plus silly extras)
    A few scientists get drunk and start fiddling with gene splicing. Ten years later, they're taking care of eight half-Pokémon kids, each freakier than the next, while a religious fanatic plots to murder them all.

    Lengthy fanfiction reviewing guide / A more condensed version
    Read and I will be very happy for a large number of reasons.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfree View Post
    Oh, I wasn't really complaining about the fact it happens that way - I was just confused by it and couldn't figure out what you were actually implying. If you'd just gotten across what's going on in the narration better I wouldn't have tripped over it like that, but because I lacked the background information I couldn't quite piece it together. It's just a clarity issue.
    Ohhhhh-kay, that makes sense. ^^; Well, that's a relief. Yeah, I can definitely make it more clear.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfree View Post
    Well. When I say you don't need multiple exclamation marks, I don't mean the stock complaint that it weakens sentences or something - I've never really gotten how that is supposed to work, and there are a lot of similar stock complaints that I'd argue are actually just wrong. But when I see two exclamation marks in a row, I think of particularly immature YouTube commenters. No matter how not-right you feel like it would sound with only one exclamation mark, it cannot possibly be worse than how it sounds with two exclamation marks to me and (I'd wager) many other readers. Hell, the moment I see the second exclamation mark I can't even imagine the character speaking it aloud anymore, because in my head it just transforms itself into a YouTube comment. It's easy for nonstandard word usage or punctuation to take on some nuanced meaning when you're used to writing that way - but ultimately, when a wider audience comes into the picture, you have to consider whether it is actually communicating that nuance to them.
    Aw dangit. Yet another way that Youtube commenters ruin everything. I'm not totally sure if I'll abstain from it entirely, but I've looked at the future chapters and I could definitely stand to tone it down quite a bit, in any case. And the double question mark thing must have been a recent habit because I never used to do it. :S

    While on the subject, what are your thoughts on all caps? (I only use them veeerrrrry sparingly.) I know some people find them annoying, but I think they can be effective. :/
    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfree View Post
    Sorry for all the nitpicking. It's just what I do.
    It's alright, and actually, it's helped me out in more ways than just fixing the things you've pointed out. I'm starting to think about the future chapters more critically because I don't want things pointed out there too. xP For example, in Chapter 4, there was a really contrived coincidence. It did have an explanation, but it was kind of a flimsy one. I was thinking to myself, "Dang, I'm gonna get grilled for this, I know it," and then all of a sudden the solution hit me. I realized the real reason why that coincidence happened, and that it was not a coincidence at all. In fact, it fit together perfectly with like three other things and happened to foreshadow something later on, which was lacking in the foreshadowing department. It's like my fic has been trolling me all along.




    Anywho, slightly delayed response due to trying to finish up the first piece of fic art!
        Spoiler:- Jade:


    Next chapter will be followed by Rudy art. Should be up soon. I wanna finish doing the edits to Chapter 1 and fully revise Chapter 3 first.

    ~Chibi~


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chibi Pika View Post
    Anywho, slightly delayed response due to trying to finish up the first piece of fic art!
        Spoiler:- Jade:


    Next chapter will be followed by Rudy art. Should be up soon.
    O_____O

    Oh my gosh! That's... that's amazing! I love it! From what I can remember of your old comic, you have gotten LOADS better! Your style is so mature, it's breath-taking! Well, actually... I don't know why, but it looks like Full Metal Alchemist style for some reason XD. But that doesn't matter, you draw people better than I do! And fabric. The fabrics awesome.

    *jealousy gauge rises*

    I'm going to be more jealous if you did this all on a mouse.

    I look forward to more drawings! And chapters.
    Winner of Best Pokémon/Pokémon Fic of 2013 in the Shipping Oscars
    Current Chapter: Chapter Ten - 3/17/14 / Current: Last Chance - 11/3/11 - Chapter 20 progress: 75%
    I survived Pupa.

  16. #16
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    Well, I’d been hoping to have more of Chapter 3 finalized before posting this chapter, but it’s been a busy week, what with friends visiting and the zombie apocalypse starting. At least I worked out most of its more serious logic fails so just writing all the replacement scenes shouldn’t take too long.

    This chapter in particular has diverged immensely from previous revisions. The course of events before was extremely unbelievable, so I hope it works better now!



    ~ Chapter 2: Reinforcements~

    I immediately took off back the way I had come, my mind racing. They were coming for me—why were they coming for me?! Swift flew alongside me as I sprinted though the woods, still completely floored by what was going on. I could feel my heart pounding and my lungs burning as I choked on ash, but the sudden burst of fear kept me running onward. I threw a glance over my shoulder—I wasn’t running nearly fast enough. They were gaining on me.

    My only hope was to reach my bike—nothing was more important than that. If I managed to, then I could make it to town before they caught me and then lose them on the side streets. Just that tiny bit of hope was enough for me, but was I too far away?

    I couldn’t help looking over my shoulder again, and—they were right behind me. What was I supposed to do now?! I wasn’t going to make it in time.

    The jeep sped past me and skidded to a stop in my path. I tried to turn and run in the other direction, but the driver threw open the door and grabbed me by the back of my shirt.

    “Augh, no—stop, damn it—” I yelled, pulling against his hold, but it was no use. The Rocket flung open the back hatch and threw me into the rear of the jeep without saying a word. And then he climbed back into the front seat and drove off as though nothing had happened.

    I lay there in a crumpled heap, my heart racing and my breath shallow and my brain still trying to work through how the heck this had just happened. I hadn’t meant to be there—I had just sort of…been there. I willed myself as hard as I could to at least sit up and figure out my situation, but nothing in my body would respond for the longest time. Clenching my teeth, I finally managed to shove everything out of my mind for the moment and look over the back seat without drawing attention to myself.

    Four…there were four Rockets in the jeep. The driver was tall, burly, and looked older than most of the others—probably more experienced too, judging by a number of badges pinned to his vest. I glanced at his reflection in the rear view mirror—he had thick black hair and dark eyes surrounded by a stern and commanding face. Really, it was intimidating just looking at him; I couldn’t help ducking behind the seat right afterwards.

    I only just noticed that I was still holding the wounded Charmander. It was still unconscious, but also still alive. I vaguely realized that we were nearing the main streets of Viridian, which came as a surprise—I had thought that we’d have joined up with the group going after Entei. But if we were in Viridian…would it be possible for me to yell for help? No—almost immediately it dawned on me that all of the windows were up now, and each of the Rockets was armed. There was no way out of this.

    I clenched my fists hard, mind still reeling from shock. How had I managed to get myself into this? It was the sort of thing you always imagined would happen to someone else. I still found myself trying to come up with something, anything that I could do, even though there was nothing. Nothing—that fact alone was eating at my mind most of all.

    After some time, I pulled myself up to look out the window again. We had just passed the outskirts of Viridian, now heading into the forests to the east of the city. And then I noticed that Swift was still flapping his wings quickly to follow the jeep, calling out to me—it was almost a painful sight. Upon seeing that I was watching him, he soared downward to fly alongside the window, apparently unwilling to leave.

    “Just go,” I mumbled, though he couldn’t hear me. “There’s nothing you can do…”

    I jumped suddenly at the sound of a gunshot and whirled around. To my horror, one of the Rockets had pulled out a small handgun and begun shooting at Swift before the driver stopped him.

    “Don’t waste your bullets on a Pidgey,” he said.

    I quickly turned to look out the back window and saw Swift flying high up in the sky. When he seemed sure that the Rockets weren’t paying attention to him, he swooped low again and waved his wing at me. I could’ve sworn I saw him wink once before taking off to the north, toward my neighborhood. I stared after him; part of me couldn’t help feeling more alone now. Still…I was confused as to what he planned to do.

    Upon reaching a small clearing that had been stripped of tress, the jeep suddenly skidded to a halt. I couldn’t see anything more from the back window, and the Rockets in the front seats were blocking my view in front of the car. The driver got out and slammed the door.

    I leaned forward to see out the back seat window and watched as he kneeled and lifted up a small hatch in the grass. Underneath were a keypad and a small screen. He pushed in a long and complicated password and pressed his hand against a scanner before closing the hatch.

    I was stunned to see the ground starting to sink, revealing a sort of ramp that descended into darkness. He walked back and got into the car again before driving downward. As we neared the end of the tunnel, the entrance behind us closed and I could see lights far ahead in the distance. And then we emerged into an immense, dimly lit underground hangar, filled with trucks, small aircraft, and on the far end, a massive jet. I stared around at it all, realizing now that Team Rocket was every bit as large as the Charizard trainer had implied.

    The driver parked the jeep in an area to the side, and the Rockets all exited the vehicle. I watched as the driver walked off toward a side of the hangar, where a heavy computerized door stood. He pulled a card out of his pocked and touched it to the scanner, unlocking it before entering what looked like an office hallway.

    And so I was left alone in the jeep. Well, not quite alone, as I quickly realized—the Charmander was still here, after all. I looked down at where I had set it next to me. A tiny flare flickered at the end of its tail, so it was still alive, at least. It probably wouldn’t survive much longer though. That fact seemed to make the already bleak situation even worse somehow.

    I nearly jumped upward upon hearing a loud bang as a door was thrown open. A young man stormed out wearing an irritated expression, closely followed by the driver, who was looking slightly submissive, which seemed unusual. The former Rocket had to be higher ranking or something. If they were arguing about something, then this would probably be a chance to find out more about my situation, at the very least. Acting more on impulse than anything, I threw myself over the back seats so that I could open the back door slightly and hear them.

    “Of course no one ever feels like telling me a damn thing about the mission status,” the higher-ranked Rocket snapped. “And what the hell made you think it would be a good idea to grab some random girl who happened to see it? Sure, she reports some poaching of a Legendary Pokémon, big deal. No one would have any idea that it was us. But now she sure as hell knows too much. Honestly, Tyson, I don’t even know why I—”

    “That’s not all,” the driver continued significantly, as though trying to defend his decision. “I saw him. The one we’ve heard rumors about from the new recruits. Course, he was far off so I didn’t see what he looked like, but I know she did.”

    A very heavy pause followed.

    “Don’t tell me you’re taking that crap seriously?” his superior asked. “I don’t know what you’ve heard, but all I’ve heard is that some ******* is going around gathering a bunch of twelve-year-olds against us.”

    “I heard he was a part of the revolt.”

    Yet another pause. This time the other Rocket seemed at least slightly intrigued. “So he might know more about us than we figured… But how many others left us that day? Have any of them accomplished much against us? I don’t see how this is any—”

    At once, I heard the beeping of what sounded like a cell phone. Tyson answered it and proceeded to listen for nearly a minute while his superior watched, still looking a bit irritated. After some time, Tyson gave a short response quietly and hung up.

    “Well?” the other Rocket asked impatiently.

    “Shortly after I left, for the others it was looking like Entei was going to escape into the Tohjo Mountains. And then—would you believe it?—the Johto Combat Unit showed up. They took control of the situation, and of course one of their agents was the one who threw the ball that caught Entei. Only now he doesn’t really want to give it up and he’s waiting for instruction from the Commander,” Tyson reported.

    I felt myself go rigid from shock. They had actually caught it?

    “The fool…Giovanni’s word isn’t enough for him?” his superior muttered scornfully, folding his arms.

    Tyson shrugged. “It’s the Johto Force. You know how they are.”

    “Tch…always making their own terms for everything…” he scoffed. “Anyways, we’re almost done preparing to transport the experiments to the secondary headquarters for testing, along with the supplies and machinery,” the higher ranking Rocket said, jerking a thumb toward the black plane on the far side of the hangar. “Since you’re back, and you have a…vested interest in that program, I want you on board.” At this point, he let out a sigh. “Now, about the girl…”

    “Should I just kill her?” Tyson interrupted. My heart seemingly stopped when he said that.

    “Well, if you’re convinced that she knows anything, it could be useful…but I don’t have time to question her, and I know none of the other Admins do.” Rather unexpectedly, he laughed. “I know, this is perfect—most of the head Executives are at the secondary headquarters right now. Stick the girl on the transport jet; let them deal with what to do with her.” With that, he walked off to discuss things with some of the other Rockets.

    I breathed a sigh of relief after hearing that. My situation hadn’t improved, but just knowing that I wasn’t dead yet was enough to make me feel better. A few seconds later, however, I noticed that Tyson was coming back toward the jeep. I immediately climbed into the back area and pretended as though I hadn’t been doing anything.

    “Well, it’s your lucky day,” he said with a snide grin as he opened the back hatch. “If you keep your head down and answer the Executives’ questions, they might not mind letting you go alive after all, though I’m not offering any guarantees.” He grabbed me by the wrist and jerked me out of the jeep. I racked my brain for something to do—some sort of resistance to show that I wasn’t just some helpless kid. I couldn’t think of anything.

    “Here,” Tyson said, handing me off to one of his subordinates. “Throw her in one of the containment cells on the transport jet. Don’t forget all the standard procedures.”

    “What about the kid’s Charmander?” the Rocket asked with a glance back in the jeep.

    “That thing isn’t dead?” Tyson said, raising an eyebrow. “I don’t know…we’ve got tons of Poké Balls—I’ll have someone else put it with the stolen Pokémon.”

    Tyson walked off in another direction, and the Rocket holding me started to head for the large, black airplane that was in the opposite corner of the hangar. Several mechanics seemed to be making sure everything was in order, and other Rockets were loading supplies into the cargo hold; Tyson’s subordinate escorted me in that direction. Large crates of machinery and boxes of various supplies filled the area, and more were being loaded in. The Rocket paused to unlock a panel along the side, and then I was thrown into a small metal room. He proceeded to check that I didn’t have any weapons or Poké Balls on me—pretty much the only thing I did have was my wallet.

    “So….” he said, flipping through it and pulling out my school ID, “Jade Arenesa, fourteen years old. I’ll be sure to get that on file. And…what do we have here?” I felt like kicking myself when I saw him pull out the wad of cash I had stuffed in there. It was my birthday savings, which I’d intended to use on a Pokémon Journey someday, though I had never quite figured out how exactly. A part of me had known all along that it was a stupid idea to carry it around like that, but…there wasn’t too much I could do about it now.

    After having found the money, the Rocket didn’t bother looking through the miscellaneous cards I had in there (most of which weren’t very important), and simply tossed the wallet into a bin with what I assumed were other confiscated items. He then chained my hands and feet to the wall before shutting the door.

    I lost track of how much time I spent alone in that cell with the only sound being the occasional clunk of more cargo being loaded onto the plane. It was nerve-wracking just standing there drenched in sweat mixed with soot and not knowing how much longer until something happened, or even what would happen. I almost just wanted to get it over with, but then immediately drove the thought from my head when I realized what it meant. I couldn’t afford to think like that—I wasn’t going to die. I was going to figure a way out of this. Expect…there was no way out. What was I supposed to do?

    After what felt like hours, I heard another door shut and then the heavy thunk of what must have been the cargo hatch closing. I tensed up slightly; the air was now filled with the steadily growing roar of engines. I could feel movement—the plane accelerated suddenly and I felt myself slant backward as it sped up the long ramp that exited the hangar. And with that, we were airborne, and I was facing an unknown fate.

    I wanted to clear my head of everything, but the thoughts wouldn’t leave. What would I have done differently if I had the chance to redo this day? Going into the forest…that was probably the one thing I shouldn’t have done. Or maybe following the mysterious trainer I’d met…but if what he said about Team Rocket’s position to take over was true…

    A sudden clang jarred me from my thoughts. I could hear footsteps nearing my cell and tensed up involuntarily. What did they want now? I had no idea what I expected to see when the cell door handle turned and opened.

    …But I definitely wasn’t expecting what I did see.

    A teenaged boy who looked about a year or two older than me was standing in the doorway. He was about my height, with thick, dirty-blond hair, baggy clothes, and was currently looking rather pleased with himself.

    “Hello there,” he said. “It looks like I’m rescuing you. My name is Spencer—I think we’re gonna be good friends.”

    I blinked. I had about a million questions, but about the only thing I could say was, “What?”

    “That’s all the response I get? Boring.” He stood aside, allowing a sleek tan-and black-furred beast to step forward in front of him. I recognized it as the final evolution of the fire-type starter Pokémon that trainers from Johto could receive. “Alright Typhlosion, I need you to melt these chains, so we’re gonna need it hot.”

    The Typhlosion leaned down onto all fours and grasped a bundle of the chains, holding them behind his head. Suddenly, a blazing ring of fire burst out from the red burners around its neck, torching through the metal with a wave of sparks. The room was instantly filled with sweltering heat.

    Still trying to make sense out of this seemingly random turn of events, I asked, “What are you doing here? And how did you know I was here? Who are you?”

    “I already told you my name,” Spencer said matter-of-factly, folding his arms. “And, uh, I guess if you wanna know how I’m here, you’ll have to ask him.” He motioned a thumb over his shoulder.

    A voice behind him said, “Yeah, Jade, I hope you’re happy, because I hadn’t planned on getting stuck on some stupid Rocket jet like this.”

    What. That voice…it couldn’t be…

    Spencer stepped aside revealing a rather disgruntled Rudy standing in the cargo bay.

    “How did you get here?” I asked, completely floored.

    He groaned slightly, putting a hand to his face. “Well Spencer needed to find his Pokémon first, and luckily it was the same place they’d taken you, so we snuck on board and then we came here for you.”

    I would have clapped a hand to my forehead if it hadn’t been chained up. “Okay, just….what? That doesn’t answer my—how about you actually start at the beginning? How did you know I was here?”

    “Alright, alright,” Rudy said impatiently, as though details like that didn’t matter and he wanted to get them out of the way as quickly as possible. “It’s because of Swift. I had walked to your house to show off my license and I saw him pecking the windows in a fuss, and—what’s with that look?!” My jaw had dropped upon hearing the word “license.”

    “You got a license. Already?!”

    “Oh come on. Enough questions already,” he said, waving a hand aside. I noticed he wasn’t totally paying attention and was preoccupied with staring at the ongoing blaze. The heat from it was starting to become overwhelming.

    “Hey, uh, is Typhlosion almost done?” I asked.

    Almost right after I had said that, the fire beast extinguished its blaze and pulled the chains apart with a snap, which was a relief. I took a few steps to stretch out my legs, the chains clattering around as I walked.

    “Guess you’ll have to deal with those for a while,” Spencer said as I stepped out of the cell. “Any closer and he’d have melted your hands and feet off.”

    I didn’t really mind—just being free was enough. Really, just them being there was enough to make the entire situation feel better somehow. I wasn’t alone in this; with three of us there was no way we wouldn’t find some way out.

    “So…” I said turning towards Rudy. “Am I even gonna get the full story as to how you got here? And how the heck do you already have a license for that matter?”

    “Oh, er…right. See, my dad got home right after you left. He would’ve been upset with me, except my test results had come in the mail and I passed everything,” Rudy said, beaming. “So, my dad took me to the place and he signed the form and I got my license and a Pokémon and everything.” He stopped there, but then realized that I was looking at him expectantly, wanting to hear the important part of the story. “But yeah, uh, I went over to your house, and no one was home, and Swift was flying around like crazy. From what I could make out, he was saying you’d been captured or something, so I followed him out into the forest and that’s when I ran into Spencer here.”

    “Yeah, my Pokémon were stolen from me a few days ago,” Spencer explained. “I’d been scoping out the entrance to the hideout for a few days, but I had no idea how I was ever gonna get inside. Rudy showed up in the area, and then about an hour later a bunch of jeeps were returning to the base, so we took the chance to sneak in behind ‘em.

    I stared, impressed. “You guys snuck into a Rocket base? What was your plan?”

    “No plan, really. Just kind of improvising, y’know?” Spencer said, laughing awkwardly. My face fell somewhat. Okay, so maybe my newfound ally wasn’t the most competent.

    “We hung out by a cargo area where we could avoid being seen, but still hear what all the passing Rockets were talking about,” he explained. “Then I overheard stuff about transporting Pokémon and supplies and a prisoner.”

    “And just look at this awesome mess it’s gotten us all into,” Rudy added, half-jokingly, half-accusingly.

    “You didn’t have to come and get me,” I said, a little bit insulted, even if it were true that he wouldn’t have been in this mess had it not been for me.

    He sighed. “I didn’t know any of this would happen, so that doesn’t matter now. We’re here now. This Team Rocket crew sounds like bad news, so we’ve gotta do something.”

    Easy for him to say. He hadn’t seen how dangerous they could be.

    “Well…” I said, “I guess we’re not really in any danger right now, so we’ve got time to plan.”

    “Exactly. Anyways, why don’t we start by screwing up as much of the crap on this plane as possible.” I couldn’t help noticing that Rudy had almost exactly the attitude that the Charizard trainer had been looking for in his anti-Rocket recruits.

    With a glance around at the crates surrounding us, I replied, “Screw up things how? I don’t think we can just go around blowing up random crap while flying.”

    “Well, for one thing…what do we do about the rest of the stolen Pokémon?” Spencer asked, motioning towards an open box filled with Poké Balls. “I already got mine back, and—”

    “Hey wait, that’s right!” I exclaimed, running over to the box. “I had a Charmander with me before I was captured. It should be in there!”

    Now it was Rudy’s turn to gape incredulously. “You have a Charmander? What in the…how?”

    “I found it out on Route 22, where I got captured. It’s…kind of a long story.” I shifted through some of the Poké Balls in dismay. “How am I ever gonna figure out which one it’s in?”

    “Here,” Spencer said, pulling out his Pokédex and opening it. I watched in fascination as he held the Poké Balls one by one up to the scanning lens on the side. After about twenty or so of them, he announced, “Here we go. Low-level, unregistered Charmander. Heh, it’s asking if I want to register it to myself. And, uh…its energy is reeaally low. I know in school they like to stress how you have to weaken the Pokémon before catching it, but come on now.”

    “I didn’t catch it,” I said a bit defensively, despite his joking tone. “It was really close to dying when I found it. I’ve got to like…find some healing items or something.” I turned to gaze vaguely around all the supply boxes in the cargo hold.

    “Alright. You fix your Charmander, I’ll go see if I can find anything useful,” Rudy said, taking the opportunity to wander off. I could have sworn I heard him mumble, “We should totally set some of this junk on fire at least.”

    I headed in the opposite direction, opening boxes and scanning their contents as I went. I had originally been unsure what the jet was intended to transport, but it was seemingly for almost anything. Most of the crates were filled with heavy machinery and old computerized devices, but then others were packed with battle enhancements for Pokémon or stronger variations of the Poké Ball. Finally I scored—a box near the front of the plane was packed with medical supplies. I picked up the first thing I could find and read the label.

    “‘Full Restore: Guaranteed to soothe burns, frostbite, poison, rashes, close open wounds, and heal any other damage done to your Pokémon’…sounds great.” I noticed the rather unappealing suggested price of 3000p—good thing I wasn’t buying it.

    I held out the Charmander’s Poké Ball and carefully pressed the button on its center, making it split open down the middle and let loose a burst of white light that quickly condensed into the fire lizard’s unconscious form. It shivered slightly, but looked to be in the same condition it had been earlier.

    I kneeled down and sprayed the liquid all over the Charmander’s skin. The lizard flinched slightly, but soon enough, the charred flesh slowly regained its normal color, leaving only small scabs in some areas on its back. It was amazing how easily Pokémon could heal; that was the only reason why the League could make Pokémon Centers free. Still, it wasn’t enough that the Charmander’s injuries were gone, as it was still exhausted and drained of power.

    “Hey Spencer!” I called out. “Do you know the name of the stuff that fully heals energy?”

    “Hyper Potion?” he said, in a tone that sounded more like he was asking me.

    “Not injuries. Energy.”

    “Oh right…uh, I think it’s called Elixir? Never used one before—I haven’t seen them sold anywhere.”

    I dug through the box some more. “Got it,” I said, pulling out a yellow bottle labeled “Max Elixir.” I flipped the cap open and poured a small amount into the fire Pokémon’s mouth. Almost in an instant, the tiny flare on its tail burst into full flame. Slowly, it opened its bright blue eyes and managed to stand to its feet.

    “Hey, how’re ya feeling?” I asked it.

    It turned suddenly toward me in alarm. The lizard gave a light whimper and glanced around nervously, as though wondering how it had gotten there.

    “This is probably a pretty big shock. And, uh…you’re probably wondering how you got here. I didn’t mean to take you from your home. It’s just that—you were…sort of…dying,” I finished lamely. The Charmander showed no real reaction to my words. Could it even understand me? As a wild Pokémon, it might never have heard human speech before.

    “Can you understand me?” I asked.

    It stared, apparently confused at my confusion. “*Yes…*” it said slowly, in a tone suggesting that it found the question to be very strange.

    “Well, uh, okay—so you’ve been around humans before. Have you ever been named?”

    The fire lizard gave me a long, quiet stare, something shifting in its eyes. After several seconds’ hesitation it replied, “*Firestorm.*”

    “Alright then,” I said. “So, are you male or female?” I wasn’t quite sure if this was an offensive question or not, but I really wasn’t used to Pokéspeech enough to tell a Pokémon’s gender by its voice.

    “*Male,*” he answered simply.

    I nodded, not really sure what else to ask him. After having gotten over his initial shock, Firestorm was looking surprisingly unconcerned with having been taken from his home, and not even very curious about his situation.

    “*Are you a Pokémon Trainer?*” he spoke all of a sudden, the words a bit more difficult for me to understand than the previous one-word statements.

    I debated over what to say in response, but before I got a chance to answer, I heard Rudy call out, “Hey Jade, come check this out!”

    I stood to my feet and motioned to the Charmander to follow, though I supposed he didn’t really have to—it wasn’t like he belonged to me or anything. After navigating back through the maze of boxes, I found Rudy and Spencer, the former sitting on the ground and undoing the latches on a long metal case.

    “Oh hey,” Spencer said, giving a small wave. “Normally I’d say that warnings are meant to be ignored, but I don’t know about this.” He looked skeptically down at Rudy.

    I stared blankly. “Huh?”

    “Check it out,” Rudy said, holding up the case. Engraved on the top in sleek lettering were the words “Poké Ball Containment Unit.” Beneath that, a label read, “Caution: Experimental Pokémon are extremely unstable and must be kept in the containment unit at all times unless removed by an experiment handler.”

    “Experimental Pokémon?” I said incredulously. Then again, Tyson’s superior had mentioned something like that…

    “Yeah, yeah! Just think—these could be like, super-powerful mutant Pokémon. If we used them to fight the Rockets, we’d be able to get out of this for sure!” Rudy said excitedly.

    I hesitated. “That…does seem like our best chance to get out of here, but…we don’t even know if they’ll listen to—hey, don’t let them out now!” I yelled frantically. He had opened the case, revealing several black Poke Balls encased in holders, each labeled with info on the experiment within.

    “I’m just looking,” Rudy countered. “I’m not gonna let them out. ...Huh, these are weird looking, aren’t they?” He pulled one of the black spheres out of its holder and rotated it in his hand.

    “Okay, okay, just wait. We’re not gonna have to fight until this plane lands, wherever it’s going. Spencer, how many Pokémon have you got?”

    “Six,” he replied, posing importantly. “Typhlosion here is the strongest, but the rest are pretty powerful too.”

    “Alright, that’s good since, uh…Rudy and I will be pretty useless in a fight.” It felt rather lame to admit.

    “Hey, what do you mean?! I’ve got two Pokémon,” Rudy shot back.

    I clapped a hand to my forehead. “Don’t be stupid, these Rockets are dangerous.”

    “How about when the plane lands, we confuse the experiments into attacking the Rockets, and then we run away during the commotion?” Spencer interjected.

    “How do we do that—?”

    Out of nowhere, an explosion of black light suddenly shot out from within our circle, knocking the three of us backward into a pile of boxes. I sat up shakily, completely stunned. What on earth had just happened?

    Spencer looked about as flustered as I felt. “Okay, just…what was that?”

    I glanced around rapidly, my eyes falling on Rudy, toppled over in a heap with his eyes wide, clutching an opened Poké Ball.

    “What did you…?” I gasped.

    “I didn’t open it, I swear!” he yelled back. “It—it let itself out!”

    “Wait, where’s the experiment?!” Spencer cut in frantically.

    The three of us whirled around in a panic, all eyes falling on the Pokémon that had appeared behind us. A jagged, lightning bolt-shaped tail twitched. Four paws slowly lifted a small, golden-furred mouse off the floor. No…it couldn’t be…

    “It’s…it’s a Pikachu?” Spencer blurted out, stifling a laugh. “A Pikachu?”

    Except something looked…off…about it. It was missing the familiar red cheek markings. And…the fur on its head was long and stiffly pointed, almost like feathers. And then its eyes suddenly snapped open, revealing a pair of fiercely intense brown irises.

    I hesitated. “Guys…I don’t think—”

    A flood of lightning surged out of the rodent’s body at once as it bolted up to the highest point it could find and sent waves of electricity flying around.

    “Let me see that!” I shouted, practically shoving Rudy out of the way so I could get a look at the label on the case holder its ball had been kept in.

    Experimental Pokémon 009: Possesses increased power intensity and rebellious disposition as a result of Zapdos heritage. Hybrid categorized a failure due to undersized power capacity, unstable chemical makeup, and immunity to traditional experiment control procedures.

    My face fell with dread. “This thing was mixed with the legendary Zapdos.”

    “What? No way… That is awesome!” Rudy exclaimed.

    “Hey, focus! If we don’t stop it, it could end up taking down the plane!”

    “Er, right, I’ll put it back in the ball—”

    The Pikachu turned suddenly at the sound of our voices and sent a string of lightning flying in our direction, shattering the black Poké Ball before any of us could do anything. I gaped in horror—what were we supposed to do now? Firestorm clutched at my leg fearfully. Typhlosion leapt in front of our group and snarled defensively, igniting its neck blaze.

    And then, in the midst of all this, I heard the sound of a door opening.

    “WHAT. THE. EVER. LIVING. HELL?!!”

    My stomach sank even lower than it had been before as I turned to see an extremely pissed-off Tyson standing in the doorway to the cargo area, his jaw hanging open from shock.

    “Uhh, hey…” Spencer said awkwardly. “Could you just leave for a bit? We kind of have a situation here.”

    Tyson stared at us in a sort of stupefied rage before turning his gaze on the experimental Pikachu and clenching his teeth. He then pulled one of the black Poké Balls from his belt and opened it. The flash of light from within took the form of a huge green mantis with an exoskeleton that was plated like armor. Its blank, pupil-less eyes flared mindlessly from a vaguely reptilian head. It flashed its impressive scythe-lined arms, seemingly cutting the very air. The Pikachu glared at the Scyther, its eyes wide with what looked like a combination of anger and dread.

    “Thought you’d play with the hybrids did you?” Tyson asked, sneering. “Then have fun facing the strongest of them. Razors, attack!”

    The three of us sat there, frozen in horror as the blade-armed nightmare of a Pokémon shot toward us, too fast to even see.




    ~End Chapter 2~
    Anyone who knows how things went in the old version might be surprised that I added Rudy and Spencer’s arrival in this chapter (it used to be in the next one.) It kind of takes away from the suspense a bit, but it makes the chapter more entertaining overall, and also makes a lot more sense, because the fact that Jade was able to free herself was something that always bugged me a lot in the old one.

    Now then, I do realize that Spencer being in the area at the time all this goes down is a bit of a lucky break for the other characters. Normally I don’t like giving my characters lucky breaks. However, I ultimately decided it was a necessity, for several reasons that actually took a few months to work out. I could explain the thought process behind it all, but I don’t think I want to bore us all with that right now.

    Next chapter is filled with lots of Experiment 009! I’ve had a lot of fun writing him this time around, so please look forward to it (though we don’t get to know him as a person until a few chapters from now.)

    ~Chibi~
    Last edited by Chibi Pika; 7th June 2012 at 9:50 PM.


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


  17. #17
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    Ya know, I actually read your previous version a few months ago when you posted in Dragonfree's fic. Since then and a few signature changes on your part announcing the updated version, I have been awaiting the return of this. Anyways, here is a rather short review of the few things that I had a qualm with in this chapter.

    “You got a license. When? How?!” I pressed, my voice probably way more excited than it should have been. Sure, he had gotten it because he was gonna be leaving soon, but still…the fact that he had one was undeniably cool somehow.
    I have a problem with this exclamation. In the previous chapter, Jade and Rudy already discussed about Rudy being pretty sure he was getting his license and leaving. Here, you make it out that Jade is hearing this for the first time.

    “Well, if you’re convinced that she knows anything, it could be useful…but I don’t have time to question her, and I know none of the other Admins do.” Rather unexpectedly, he laughed, “I know, this is perfect—most of the head Executives are at the secondary headquarters right now. Stick the girl on the transport jet; let them deal with what to do with her.” With that, he walked off to discuss things with some of the other Rockets.
    *double take* Whoa, whoa. Mercy. From Team Rocket. We are talking about a notorious crime syndicate here. You speculate later that Jade is convinced that she is going to die no matter what, but in my opinion, a heartless statement from Tyson's superior indicating that she can die there after questioning may have had a more dramatic approach.

    Other than those two things, great chapter. Introducing a new character, Bringing in one of my favorite Pokemon, just awesome. So... can I be on the PM list?

    Oh, just remembered something. I also have a slight problem with the Pokespeak you use, meaning the grammatical part. To me, quotations and asterisks seem a bit cluttered. Just a thought. I can live with it, but again, seems a bit cluttered when reading it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Septic Scepti1e View Post
    I have a problem with this exclamation. In the previous chapter, Jade and Rudy already discussed about Rudy being pretty sure he was getting his license and leaving. Here, you make it out that Jade is hearing this for the first time.
    Ahh. I guess my intent was that she was surprised that he had gotten it so soon after, but on second thought, their earlier conversation got edited to indicate he was planning to get it right that day anyway (in the old version, it was just implied that he'd get it within the next few days.) So yeah, I'll fix that up then.
    Quote Originally Posted by Septic Scepti1e View Post
    *double take* Whoa, whoa. Mercy. From Team Rocket. We are talking about a notorious crime syndicate here. You speculate later that Jade is convinced that she is going to die no matter what, but in my opinion, a heartless statement from Tyson's superior indicating that she can die there after questioning may have had a more dramatic approach.
    Was his statement particularly merciful? I'm a bit interested in how the whole scene came off overall, because in the old version there was no reason whatsoever why Tyson didn't kill her out on the mountain, or why his superior sent her to the Executives. So I tried to be more careful this time around and make sure everyone had clear motivations. Is it just that Jade's reactions seemed off-balanced?
    Quote Originally Posted by Septic Scepti1e View Post
    Oh, just remembered something. I also have a slight problem with the Pokespeak you use, meaning the grammatical part. To me, quotations and asterisks seem a bit cluttered. Just a thought. I can live with it, but again, seems a bit cluttered when reading it.
    Mmmm...dang. That is something that's crossed my mind several times over the course of the fic's (far too long) lifespan, and I did ask readers about it several times in the last thread. I know that it's not necessary to distinguish the Pokespeech, and that some authors don't, but I've always preferred to keep it distinguished (and in a way that doesn't require forum tagging.) Everything else I tried (like say, brackets) didn't register as dialogue when I was doing read-overs, so I decided to go the opposite route and overmark it. Well, I don't want to come off as ignoring crits, so I hope it doesn't make it difficult to read. :S

    Well, thank you very much for reviewing and I'll add you to the PM list. =)

    ~Chibi~


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


  19. #19
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    Was his statement particularly merciful? I'm a bit interested in how the whole scene came off overall, because in the old version there was no reason whatsoever why Tyson didn't kill her out on the mountain, or why his superior sent her to the Executives. So I tried to be more careful this time around and make sure everyone had clear motivations. Is it just that Jade's reactions seemed off-balanced?
    Alright, I will attempt to clarify. Team Rocket is typically trying to keep their plans secret. Your older version hinted at this quite a lot. My point is the fact that Tyson's superior seemed too... nonchalant about it.

    Also, I have no problem with people separating Pokespeak and human speak. It's the double symbols that throw me off.

    Hope that clarifies my meanings.
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    - I’ve totally played Pokémon Yellow, until it died. I just never bothered to teach the Charizard Fly.

    …are you saying you broke my game, Cheeky? I always knew you could destroy everything you touch, which is why I never let you touch anything out of my sight.

    - Not while you’re at school.

    *angrish*I was THIS CLOSE to doing the Mew Glitch myself*angrish*

    *long, deep breath* Anyway…

    “Hello there,” he said. “It looks like I’m rescuing you. My name is Spencer—I think we’re gonna be good friends.”
    He’s so blunt about it too, I can already tell he’s gonna be the funny guy of the group.

    I could have sworn I heard him mumble, “We should totally set some of this junk on fire at least.”
    Wait, is Rudy a pyromaniac o.O? I’m sure we’ll get more characterization later (well duh, he’s a main character), but that right there gets me thinking he just loves setting things on fire.

    “WHAT. THE. EVER. LIVING. HELL?!!”

    My stomach sank even lower than it had been before as I turned to see an extremely pissed-off Tyson standing in the doorway to the cargo area, his jaw hanging open from shock.

    “Uhh, hey…” Spencer said awkwardly. “Could you just leave for a bit? We kind of have a situation here.”
    I rest my case: Spencer is the Funny Guy. I honestly hope we get more crackpot moments from him. He might even be the glue that keeps the group together x3.

    Anyway, this is notably longer than chapter one, which I’m totally cool with. I’m pretty sure that if I remember correctly, both this and the first chapter used to be all one chapter back in the day, they both easily flowed together. Though that’s expected, since chapter one ended on some form of cliff hanger.

    Ah ha, was this Experiment 009 in your little comic? I remember seeing some kind of Pikachu in it, but couldn’t tell because it didn’t have the cheek marks. So is this Pikachu a main character, then :3?

    Looking forward to chapter three, since you’re so engrossed in it X3.
    Winner of Best Pokémon/Pokémon Fic of 2013 in the Shipping Oscars
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    So where was my PM about this actually being up? You told me you'd tell me. Now I'm 2 chapters and a prologue behind...
    Oh well, that's ok, I still love you chibi.
    Man trying to remember how it all began is fun and difficult to remember. Remembering certain scenes, How freaking epic 009 is. And seeing the changes in it all, not many of which I really noticed... oh well.
    Anyway, great stuff, I think muuuch better than originally written. Especially since I don't think I ever went back and reread the changes you made to certain chapters and just went off the A/N. lol.
    Buuut good to be back to reading some good stuff again, I've been without for a while now.
    I guess I don't have too much else to say other than great work and I can't wait to read more of it. PM list please.
    jirachiman out
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    Ugh, sorry about the delayed response, guys. This week was hell. A midterm project, game design iteration presentation, and finishing up my demo reel for an animation festival. And the ongoing zombie apocalypse...that too.
    Quote Originally Posted by Septic Scepti1e View Post
    Alright, I will attempt to clarify. Team Rocket is typically trying to keep their plans secret. Your older version hinted at this quite a lot. My point is the fact that Tyson's superior seemed too... nonchalant about it.
    Okay, I think I totally misread your first post, because now it makes perfect sense. Yeah, I see what you mean about the nonchalance, and I can edit that out. I'm not totally sure if I want to have him go outright say that she can die there (a number of reasons: feels a bit cliched-villain-ish; I didn't want it to be a sure thing that Jade was going to die because...the dangers in the story sort of...escalate from here on out, so it seemed better to leave this one more conflicted; and I was trying to characterize him as finding the idea of dumping more work onto the Executives as amusing. Hmm...maybe I can tweak the lines to get the best of both worlds...I think I have an idea.

    I'm not sure what you mean about the old version better getting across that Team Rocket keeps their plans secret, though. I felt like the Rockets used to compromise their secrecy waaaaay too often. Dx In fact, in the old version, he even let Jade live for no reason--they didn't even need her questioned--there was no reason at all.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kutie Pie View Post
    Wait, is Rudy a pyromaniac o.O? I’m sure we’ll get more characterization later (well duh, he’s a main character), but that right there gets me thinking he just loves setting things on fire.

    I rest my case: Spencer is the Funny Guy. I honestly hope we get more crackpot moments from him. He might even be the glue that keeps the group together x3.
    I have been trying my hardest to make Rudy and Spencer more endearing this time around, since they basically had no personality before. I hope they'll be enjoyable to read. ^^ (And yeah, Rudy is totally a pyro. I outright told the reader this in the old version, even though we never got any real proof of it before.)
    Quote Originally Posted by Kutie Pie View Post
    Ah ha, was this Experiment 009 in your little comic? I remember seeing some kind of Pikachu in it, but couldn’t tell because it didn’t have the cheek marks. So is this Pikachu a main character, then :3?
    Actually...no, he was never in my comic. But I can see how you thought that, because the explanation makes everything 100% weirder...

    My comic, Chibi Pika n' Friends, was based around the zany adventures of me and my friends. The main character, Chibi Pika, was a loose caricature of me, and obviously my namesake here (the comic predated the username.) All of the characters were named "Chibi _____" So then along comes Experiment 009, who, in all my brilliance, I decided to name Chibi (because the Pikachu character was always named Chibi in the old revisions, even though he was now a badass.) Well, in the comic, since all the chibis had Chibi in their name, they were mostly referred to as their second name, so Chibi Pika was always referred to as Pika. This sort of separated them in my mind. But then I started insisting that people nickname ME Chibi, which has unintentionally connected me with a badass male who is completely unrelated to me. Oh, and Chibi Pika doesn't have cheek markings just because it made the crazy facial expressions easier to draw.

    It makes so much sense now, doesn't it?! 8D

    But yeah, Chibi is most definitely a main character, and his personality is much more defined this time around. If you want a sneak peek at what he looks like, here is some old (2007) art of him I had lying around.
    Quote Originally Posted by jirachiman876 View Post
    So where was my PM about this actually being up? You told me you'd tell me. Now I'm 2 chapters and a prologue behind...
    Oh well, that's ok, I still love you chibi.
    Man trying to remember how it all began is fun and difficult to remember. Remembering certain scenes, How freaking epic 009 is. And seeing the changes in it all, not many of which I really noticed... oh well.
    Anyway, great stuff, I think muuuch better than originally written. Especially since I don't think I ever went back and reread the changes you made to certain chapters and just went off the A/N. lol.
    Buuut good to be back to reading some good stuff again, I've been without for a while now.
    ASFDGSFDFGSGD. I knew I was forgetting something! Gaaaahhh, I'm sorry. Dx Well, I'm glad you found it anyway, thanks for reading!

    (And yes, I used to post silly author's notes about changes made to chapters WAY TOO OFTEN. Hence why I just decided to start over. =P)




    Aaand, now for updates! This past week was hell so I didn't get much writing done, but it's the weekend now!! The world is open to me, muahahah!! Needless to say, I'll be writing like crazy. I hope to get the new chapter up by Monday or Tuesday (sorry about the delay!)

    Oh yeah, and I've got the second piece of character artwork!
        Spoiler:- Rudy:

    Next chapter will be followed by Spencer art.

    ~Chibi~
    Last edited by Chibi Pika; 23rd October 2011 at 7:40 AM.


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chibi Pika View Post
    I have been trying my hardest to make Rudy and Spencer more endearing this time around, since they basically had no personality before. I hope they'll be enjoyable to read. ^^ (And yeah, Rudy is totally a pyro. I outright told the reader this in the old version, even though we never got any real proof of it before.)
    Well, you're doing great in giving them personalities. I've been enjoying Spencer's weird sense of humor X3.

    Actually...no, he was never in my comic. But I can see how you thought that, because the explanation makes everything 100% weirder...

    My comic, Chibi Pika n' Friends, was based around the zany adventures of me and my friends. The main character, Chibi Pika, was a loose caricature of me, and obviously my namesake here (the comic predated the username.) All of the characters were named "Chibi _____" So then along comes Experiment 009, who, in all my brilliance, I decided to name Chibi (because the Pikachu character was always named Chibi in the old revisions, even though he was now a badass.) Well, in the comic, since all the chibis had Chibi in their name, they were mostly referred to as their second name, so Chibi Pika was always referred to as Pika. This sort of separated them in my mind. But then I started insisting that people nickname ME Chibi, which has unintentionally connected me with a badass male who is completely unrelated to me. Oh, and Chibi Pika doesn't have cheek markings just because it made the crazy facial expressions easier to draw.

    It makes so much sense now, doesn't it?! 8D
    Ahhhh, okay. That makes a lot of sense now, thanks for clearing that up. I'll take a closer look at the comic, then, since I screwed it up within my own head.

    Oh yeah, and I've got the second piece of character artwork!
        Spoiler:- Rudy:

    Next chapter will be followed by Spencer art.
    Haaauuuu, I'm in love with your drawings now! They're so clean and professional-looking! More, more!
    Winner of Best Pokémon/Pokémon Fic of 2013 in the Shipping Oscars
    Current Chapter: Chapter Ten - 3/17/14 / Current: Last Chance - 11/3/11 - Chapter 20 progress: 75%
    I survived Pupa.

  24. #24
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    Incoming review! And happy late birthday, LC! *confetti*

    I glanced over my shoulder—too slow, they were gaining on me.
    This doesn't pan out grammatically or syntactically, I think - exactly what is it that is too slow? Because the only way this sentence would work out would be if "they" were too slow, which is clearly not what you were going for. Otherwise, "they were gaining on me" is at least definitely an independent clause, making that a comma splice, and the "too slow" just becomes a vague dangling something with no subject.

    I couldn’t help looking over my shoulder again, and—they were right behind me, what was I supposed to do now?!
    Similar grammatical problem here. "What was I supposed to do now?" could stand on its own, so you can't separate it from the rest of the sentence with just a comma. I'd replace it with a period.

    The driver was older than most of the others and judging by a number of badges pinned to his vest, more experienced as well.
    You need another comma on the other side of "judging by a number of badges pinned to his vest".

    How can she see his eyes if she's in the back seat and he's driving, which would presumably mean he's looking straight ahead and she's behind him? o.o If she's seeing it in the rear-view mirror, it would make sense, but then say that.

    I'm a bit confused by all the mentions of other Rockets besides the driver - you never make it really sound like there are more Rockets inside the car than just her and the driver because she never mentions that and one would have expected it to get brought up in some manner, but she does keep talking about "the other Rockets", with no real indication of what other Rockets she's talking about. If there is another Rocket in the seat beside her, say so. If there is one in the passenger seat that's watching her, say so. Logically one would expect she'd notice people who are actually beside her or paying attention to her before she'd notice the hair or eye color of the guy who's driving the car (and is therefore neither exactly near her nor of immediate relevance to her for now).

    This sort of comes into something that generally bugs me a little about several of the descriptions in this chapter, which is that they... feel like descriptions rather than like the natural flow of the narration, if that makes any sense. Like, Jade is narrating what's going on, and then suddenly there's description, and then Jade starts narrating stuff again. It doesn't prioritize what Jade would be noticing or thinking or caring about in a natural way while the description goes on, making it feel jarringly distanced from the rest of the narrative. Try to get the necessary details in where they are directly relevant to Jade. Descriptions say something about the POV character, not just the subject of the description, and when Jade is supposed to be scared but then suddenly starts impassively describing this Team Rocket driver dude in a very neutral, impassive way, that really ruins the sense of dread you've been setting up. I keep pointing people to this post.

    In general I find the portrayal of Jade's mental state a bit hit-and-miss - you've got some very nice descriptions of it ("I lay there in a crumpled heap, my heart racing and my breath shallow and my brain still trying to work through how the heck this had just happened" is one of my favorites), but other parts don't really succeed at conveying that sense of fear and urgency. "Part of me just wanted to get it over with, but then…I realized that the more time I spent stuck in here meant more time to live. No…no, that was stupid, I wasn’t going to die. I was going to figure a way out of this" feels pretty dead, for example; I'm not sure if I can point at precisely why, but it could be that it's kind of tell-y, i.e. it feels like it's summarizing her thoughts more than showing them directly. Either way, it falls flat.

    It probably wouldn’t survive much longer though.
    You need a comma before that "though", I'm pretty sure.

    Why has Tyson heard more of the rumours than the higher-ranking Rocket has? Especially a nugget as significant as "the guy who is working against us may have been part of an internal revolt, so he has inside knowledge"? I can get how there was a revolt if significant rumours are going around between the lower-ranking officers that don't reach the higher ranks at all, but I don't think you meant to convey that kind of broken hierarchy where the grunts are more in the know than the admins.

    Rather unexpectedly, he laughed, “I know, this is perfect—most of the head Executives are at the secondary headquarters right now. Stick the girl on the transport jet; let them deal with what to do with her.”
    You can't laugh a sentence. Maybe a word (although some would argue with that), but not this. So that should be a period after "he laughed".

    Spencer and Rudy, once they come in, are completely devoid of any kind of fear or confusion or concern about the fact they're in a Team Rocket jet that's currently flying them to some unknown location. They act like superheroes who do this sort of thing all the time, not like normal teenagers trying to save their friends from dangerous armed criminals, and it makes the whole thing just feel awfully cartoony and difficult to take seriously once they come in; their nonchalance about what's going on sucks out all the real sense of danger. Establishing characterization is nice, but characters still need to act in a way that's appropriate to their situation. Jade also stops being scared when they walk in, which is perhaps even more jarring since we have already seen that she's afraid and now suddenly she's getting excited over Rudy having a license as if that's the biggest of her concerns. It's amusing and all, but seeing as this isn't a pure humour fic, there are better moments to be amusing than when you have to sacrifice all sense of drama and suspense for it.

    He groaned slightly, putting a hand to his face. “I got stuck being the decoy so we could figure out where they’d have taken you. Luckily, it was the same place they took his Pokémon, so Spencer was able to break me out with his Typhlosion first and then we came here for you.”
    Decoy? Did it not occur to them that the gang of armed criminals might just shoot him? In fact, why did it not occur to the gang of armed criminals to just shoot him? They kept Jade because they suspected she had information about the Charizard guy - but why did they keep Rudy, who clearly had no such information? What did they think the executives would want him for?

    “Well, uh, okay—so you’ve been around humans before. Have you ever been named?”

    The fire lizard gave me a long, quiet stare, something shifting in its eyes. After several seconds’ hesitation it replied, “*Firestorm.*”
    Yay for hints at backstory.

    “We kept all the successful experiments for ourselves. This one happens to be my personal favorite,” Tyson said proudly.
    Why is he telling them this? Feels rather infodumpy.


    Aaaanyway.

    Yay for stuff happening! Yay for rewriting silly fics for ten years! Yay for more plot!

    Most of my issues this time around are kind of style/emotion-related, but there's also the decoy bit. I do think the "she may have information about Charizard guy" thing works fine as a reason for them not to kill her right away, but Spencer and Rudy's appearance feels very handwaved by comparison. I'm not sure how best to fix that (you'd know better, what with knowing the framework of your story and all), but I think it does really need a better excuse than what it currently has (i.e. none).

    Happy tenth fic-anniversary again.

    Chapter 63: Recovery
    The story of an ordinary boy on an impossible quest in a world that isn't as black and white as he always thought it was.
    (rough draft of the remaining chapters finished for NaNoWriMo; to be edited and posted)

    Morphic
    (completed, plus silly extras)
    A few scientists get drunk and start fiddling with gene splicing. Ten years later, they're taking care of eight half-Pokémon kids, each freakier than the next, while a religious fanatic plots to murder them all.

    Lengthy fanfiction reviewing guide / A more condensed version
    Read and I will be very happy for a large number of reasons.

  25. #25
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    Why hallo there everyone. Did you miss me? Probably not, but here I am anyway. -_- I guess I should probably explain just WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED to make me abandon thread for so long.

    ...

    I've...I've been seeing another fic.
    Silverwing: *Dramatic soap-opera gasp.*

    Okay, okay, on a more serious note...I basically got kidnapped by the MLP fandom. My friend started writing a massively long and complicated epic about a group of ponies trying to save the legendary beasts of their world while having no idea what they're doing. Naturally, I fell in love with it immediately. I joined my friend's group and together we all worked out the story details. Then I somehow ended up starting to make a full anime intro to the fic, and since I'm really supposed to be an animator, and not really much a writer, I got way more devoted to that project than to my own fic. Combine that with my final year of college, graduation around to corner, my ongoing need to find an internship, and my general devotion to spending all my time becoming a better animator, and not much fic stuff got done. Well...not much non-pony-related fic stuff, anywho.

    I'll start things off by saying I did read your long review Dragonfree, and at first I was torn between whether I should focus on continuing Ch3, or going back to fix up Ch2. Most of the problems with Ch2 were ones I didn't know how to fix, though, so I spent most of my time just sitting around staring at Word (ah, the best form of productivity) because of my stupid urge to always revise things. x_X But then, in time, I actually did manage to fix almost all of the problems, even the big ones (like the infinitely stupid Rudy-as-a-decoy bit that I have no idea how it made it past QA.) Still haven't added the edits to the fic, but I did write them! Huzzah!

    Then I got stuck on the mess that was Ch3...Stitching together lumps of content from different revisions and trying to make the logic of it all coherent. (I'll just say...trying to choreograph a Pokemon battle in which your opponent has a gun is HARD.)

    But yeah, I'm done with school and have a month until I start an internship (assuming I actually get picked for any of them) so I'm back into writing and already picking up the slack on the next chapter. I was going to post all this ages ago, but I never wanted to post it until I was reasonably close to being done with the chapter, which completely got forgotten during the Month of Pony. >:

    I will not let LC die! It will return, and soon!

    Current Progress: 10/15 pages!

    ~Chibi~
    Last edited by Chibi Pika; 8th May 2012 at 8:09 PM.


    Ever wondered what would happen if humans had the power to overthrow the Legendaries? To either use them for their own ends, or eliminate them altogether? One thing is for certain...the balance between human and Legendary is unstable.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    8/30/12: CHAPTER 7: “Into the Fire” POSTED!!!
    Chapter 8 progress: 9/12 pages


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